Jumat, 29 November 2013

Rumors: Audi Considering to Produce Nanuk & Quattro Concept

Audi will launch a  series of top-end image-building cars based on recent concepts, such as a new Audi Quattro and off-beat Audi Nanuk supercar, in order to stretch its brand appeal and strengthen Audi's image as a maker of ultra-desirable cars, , according to André Konsbruck, the director of Audi UK.

Although neither concept vehicle has been confirmed for production, Konsbruck said that they both had production viability, and were undergoing customer testing and internal evaluation to see if there is a business case for them to be made.

“Every concept we show has production possibilities, and these cars are no different,” said Konsbruck. “I can see a future where we aim to deliver different, innovative premium cars that people aspire to own, such as these. They will be niche, and they will push our price ceiling, but they deliver on the brand image and build the desirability of the brand as a whole.

“However popular they are, we cannot just build Audi A3s, that’s clear. Audi has always done special projects to drive its premium image, and cars like the Quattro and Nanuk could achieve that.”

Thanks to: Autocar

Spied Up Date: 2015 Mini Cooper 5-Door

The MINI five-door hatch will be a brand-new addition to the range when it arrives in Summer 2014, and we have exclusive pictures of it months ahead of the reveal. Taken at the Oxford plant, these camera phone images were sent in anonymously to Auto Express.

Despite being taped-up for the paint shop, you can clearly see the stretched profile next to the three-door MINI revealed earlier this month. "You can see from looking at the standard hatch that we will need to expand the wheelbase just to fit another set of doors in", Dietmar Zimmerhackl, Senior Vice President MINI Product Line told us at the recent LA Motor Show.

The five-door hatchback is tipped to be the most lucrative member of the new MINI range, aimed at young families desperate for extra space. “Some people want a MINI with the ease of five doors but they don't want it to be as big as the Countryman. That's our market here," Zimmerhackl revealed.

A visible bonnet vent gives away that this is the Cooper S model in our pictures – fitted with a 189bhp 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo, but expect the five-door model to get the same all-new engine range as the three-door. That means a 134bhp three-cylinder 1.5-litre turbo in the Cooper and a 114bhp 1.5-litre turbodiesel in the Cooper D. A hot JCW model will follow too, with a tuned version of the Cooper S’s 2.0-litre turbo.

Three and five-door version of the MINI hatch will spearhead a new-look line-up for MINI, that could total as many as eight separate model lines, all based on the flexible new UKL1 platform. Replacements for the Cabriolet, Clubman, Countryman and Paceman are guaranteed, while a sporty MX-5 rival could replace the slow-selling Roadster and Coupe models. An MPV is also being considered along with a saloon for the Chinese market. For more details click here.

Thanks to: Auto Express

Kamis, 28 November 2013

New Concept Car: Suzuki A-Wind

Suzuki has unveiled the new A-Wind concept hatchback at the Thailand Motor Show.
The concept hatch is 3600mm long, 1600mm wide and 1540mm high and has got a 2425mm long wheelbase. The concept rides on 16-inch alloy wheels with 185/55 R16 tyres.  Power comes from a 996cc 3-cylinder petrol engine mated to a CVT gearbox. 
The concept is painted in an striking Energy Yellow shade.  The overall exterior stance is more of a tall-boy hatchback which apart from some concept-car bits, looks production ready. Side profile looks simple with a deep character line running across from the rear door to the front fender. The concept gets pull-type door handles seen in other premium hatchbacks. The A-Wind concept’s front gets twin chrome-bars that run along the grille going all the way inside the headlamps.
Interior gets lighter shades and an overall-dual tone theme and the dashboard looks simple yet upmarket with some bits shared with existing Suzuki models like the steering wheel and control knobs. The steering wheel and the CVT gearknob however, are leather wrapped in this concept. The A-Wind concept also features a large touch-screen display that sits in the center above manually operated A/C controls. Interior packaging looks good in terms of rear-seat legroom, headroom as well as boot space. 
Overall, the Suzuki A-Wind concept previews a future mainstream hatchback (Codename YL7) which will make it to our shores as well. Expect Maruti to unveil a production version of the car based on the Suzuki A-Wind concept at the upcoming Auto Expo 2014 early next year.

Thanks to: Autocar India

Rabu, 27 November 2013

New Car: 2014 Hyundai Genesis

The 2014 Hyundai Genesis has been unveiled in Korea – the luxury sedan, teased last month, will replace the original Genesis sedan in its domestic market by the end this year, with exports to selected markets set to begin in 2014.

The production version of the rear-wheel drive offering fully reflects the company’s ‘Modern Premium’ brand direction and showcases the new ‘Fluidic Sculpture 2.0’ design theme, the car deriving its styling from the HCD-14 Genesis Concept shown earlier in the year.

It measures in at 4,990 mm long, 1,890 mm wide and 1,480 mm tall, with a 3,010 mm wheelbase, 75 mm more than its predecessor. The new Genesis is offered with a choice of rear-wheel drive (2WD) or new HTRAC All-Wheel-Drive (AWD) layouts, with a new multi-link rear suspension to boot.
Four GDI engines are available for the car, three Lambda V6 units in different displacements and a range-topping Tau unit. The entry-level mill is the 3.0 litre Lambda, offering 257 PS at 6,000 rpm and 304 Nm at 5,000 rpm, followed by a 3.3 litre Lambda with 282 PS and 347 Nm, at an identical rpm range.

The last Lambda is a 3.8 litre job, with 315 PS and 397 Nm, again at the same rpm point. As for the 5.0 litre Tau V8, that one offers 425 PS at 6,000 rpm and 520 Nm at 5,000 rpm. All engines are paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission.

Performance figures range from a 0-100 km/h time of 8.6 seconds and a 230 km/h top speed for the 3.0 litre variant right up to a 0-100 km/h sprint time of 5.4 seconds and a 240 km/h top speed for the 5.0 litre Tau V8.

Some other numbers, this concerning body rigidity – 51.5% of the new Genesis’s body is made of ultra high-strength steel, a 37.7% increase over the previous car. Body-in-white stiffness is now stiffer in torsional and bending strength by 16% and 40% respectively.

The rear boot offers 493 litres (in VDA, and 433 in SAE) of luggage space, while available storage space in the cabin is now 26.9 litres, up 3.7 litres than before – Hyundai says the capacity on call is greater than its premium Euro rivals. Improved NVH is also evident – there’s 38 kg of sound insulation to be found in the new car, slightly more than before.

Thanks to: Paultan

Recall Up Date: 2013 Maruti Suzuki Ertiga, Swift, Dzire, & A-Star

Maruti Suzuki has issued a recall of some of its vehicles over a possible defect in the steering column.
The recall affects only models of the Ertiga, Swift, Swift Dzire and A-star that had been manufactured between October 19 and October 26, 2013.
As part of the recall, Maruti Suzuki will replace the steering column on cars where it is found to be defective, and has already dispatched the new steering columns to its dealer workshops. Maruti dealers will contact the owners in order to conduct this exercise.
Additionally, the company has also urged owners of Ertiga, Swift, Dzire and A-star models purchased after October 19, 2013 to check on the company website if their car is part of the recall. This can be done by following the link on the home page, and entering the chassis number (MA3 followed by 14-digit, alpha-numeric number) in the field provided. The chassis number is embossed on the vehicle ID plate and is also in the vehicle invoice and registration documents. Owners can also contact a Maruti Suzuki workshop to ascertain if their vehicle is eligible for recall.
Maruti has further stated that this recall is limited to the above mentioned vehicles only and does not pertain to any other model sold in India or in international markets.
Thanks to: Autocar India

Hot News: Ssangyong to Launch Nissan Juke Rival at Geneva Show 2014

The new Ssangyong X100 baby crossover - a budget rival to the likes of the Nissan Juke  - will be launched at next year's Geneva motor show.

Developed in conjunction with new part-owner Mahindra, the crossover sits on an all-new platform and will be sold in the UK, where company bosses expect it to help double the brand's sales to around 2000 cars a year. Buyers will get a choice of a new 1.6-litre petrol or diesel engine.

"This is a big car for us, because it marks the beginning of a new era for the company and pitches a wparticularly well-priced car in to a growing segment of the market," said Ssangyong UK's marketing manager, Steve Gray. "We are the niche Korean brand, and we always will be, but we think we can exploit that to deliver quality cars for an affordable price. That clearly resonates with some car buyers, and will do so in the future."

Ssangyong has recently committed to developing new models in its core 4x4, SUV and MPV markets, with Gray suggesting that the next new launch would be an SUV even smaller than the X100. "It is where the market is heading, and we think we can produce something eye-catching and appropriate," he said.

Thanks to: Autocar

Rumors: BMW to Add 'i' Lineup with i5

It’s only a matter of time before BMW fills in gap between its i3 and i8 green cars, and according to Autocar the next i car will be the i5.  

The i5 will essentially be a stretched version of the i3, making it a more practical family car with more legroom and cargo space. With the added dimensions, the i5 could gain full-sized rear doors giving rear passengers easier access to the back seats. The i3 has an overall length of 157 inches, and Autocar suggests that the i5 will provide an additional 4 inches of legroom and a larger cargo area than the i3 city car, which currently provides 11.8 cubic feet of space in the rear and 2.8 cubic feet up front.

It’s uncertain if the i3’s powertrain, including its available range extender, will carry over or if the i5 will gain a more robust system. The i3 is powered by an electric motor rated at 170-hp and 184 lb-ft of torque. It has an estimated range of 100 miles, though an optional gas-powered range-extending engine should bump total range to about 200 miles.
Thanks to: Motor Trend

Selasa, 26 November 2013

New Car: 2014 Honda City

Honda has taken the wraps off the fourth-generation City, with the launch confirmed for January 2014.
The new Honda City (Code: 2CT) is built on the same platform as the upcoming new-generation Honda Jazz. The new car has a length of 4440mm (same as the current City), but the wheelbase is 50mm more at 2600mm, shoulder room 40mm more than the current car, height stands at 10mm more at 1495mm, width at 1695mm, legroom up by 60mm and knee-room up by 70mm.
The new Honda City will come with both petrol and diesel engine options. The 1.5-litre diesel is Honda’s new made-for-India engine, the same as seen on the Amaze, but is more fuel efficient and refined. The 1.5-litre petrol has also been tuned for better fuel efficiency and comes with a plastic intake manifold for weight reduction.
The car boasts a 24 percent improvement in structural rigidity as compared to the old car. There’s new MacPherson struts for the front suspension, while the rear gets an H-shape twist-beam suspension. Honda also claims that the brakes have been tuned to provide better feel.
In terms of equipment, the new 2014 Honda City comes with a five-inch LCD display, with in-built hands-free telephony, steering-mounted audio controls, and an eight-speaker sound system with USB, MP3 and Bluetooth connectivity as standard, along with a total of four power outlets for the front and rear seats. The car now also gets rear air-con vents, touchscreen air-con controls, a sunroof and cruise control.
Thanks to: Autocar India

Spied: 2015 Mercedes S63 AMG Coupe

The new Mercedes S-class coupé has again been spotted testing in AMG guise.

Due to launch in 2015, this performance version of the S-class coupé sports a new, lower front bumper than the standard car along with redesigned air intakes and new AMG wheels. AMG exhaust outlets can be seen at the rear alongside redesigned LED light clusters.

The Concept S-class coupé was first seen at the Frankfurt motor show earlier this year. Conceived as a replacement for the current CL, the concept measures some 5005mm long, 1958mm wide and has a wheelbase of 2945mm.

The S63 AMG coupé will use the same eight-cylinder twin-turbocharged 5.5-litre V8 engine as the S63 AMG saloon. That means 577bhp in total with 664lb ft of torque. It will also use the same seven-speed Speedshift MCT and is expected to have a top speed of 186mph.

Mercedes has said the Concept S-class coupé is "very close" to the styling of the production model. The brand has also confirmed that a convertible version of the S-class coupé is also in development.

Thanks to: Autocar

Hot News: Fisker Files for Bankruptcy

American car manufacturer Fisker has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, but the brand has been sold to investment group Hybrid Tech Holdings LLC, which could restart production of the Fisker Karma in the US.

There have been numerous efforts to help salvage the company after it was initially backed by a U.S. government loan. Effectively, the sale of Fisker means U.S. taxpayers have lost around $139 million (£86 million) after Hybrid Technology acquired most of Fisker’s assets for around $25 million (£15.5 million).

"After having evaluated and pursued all other alternatives, we believe the sale to Hybrid and the related Chapter 11 process is the best alternative for maximising Fisker Automotive's value for the benefit of all stakeholders,” said Marc Beilinson, Fisker Automotive Chief Restructuring Officer.
Earlier in the year Fisker announced it had been forced to lay off a huge number of staff, which also followed the resignation of its Executive Chairman, Henrik Fisker – the ex-Aston Martin and BMW designer who founded the company in 2007. For more details click here.

Thanks to: Auto Express

New Cars: 2015 Volvo S/V60 Polestar

Volvo has revealed two new high-performance Polestar models, based on the S60 saloon and V60 estate. Under the bonnet the 3.0-litre six-cylinder turbo-charged engine is now fitted with twin-scroll turbos and a new intercooler, for a total of 345bhp – a slight reduction from the 500bhp in the original S60 Polestar Concept, revealed in June last year.

Upgrades over the standard models include modifications made to increase the rigidity of the chassis, 80 per cent stiffer springs and Ohlins performance shock absorbers, along with 20-inch Polestar wheels. Power is delivered to the road through a Haldex all-wheel drive system and six-speed automatic gearbox with a new paddle shift system. Both Polestar models will hit 62mph in 4.9 seconds and top out at an electrically limited 155mph.

There are subtle aero tweaks too, including a new front splitter, rear spoiler and rear diffuser to increase downforce. The brakes have also undergone substantial modifications, with new ventilated front discs and six-piston Brembo callipers. Changes to the interior are less dramatic with new details such as the steering wheel and seats being finished in Polestar colours.

Further details and final production numbers will be released next year, with first deliveries beginning in June 2014. Prices are also yet to be released, but expect a price tag of around £40,000. For more details click here.

Thanks to: Auto Express

Spied: 2015 Mini Cooper 5-Door

The real Maxi Cooper is coming. With the 2014 Mini Cooper hardtop making its debut this week at the 2013 Los Angeles auto show, Mini is hard at work making a four-door version of the Mini Cooper a reality. A spy photographer recently caught this camouflaged Mini Cooper S four-door testing overseas, signaling that the Cooper four-door isn't far from production.

Though the back-half of this Mini Cooper is complete with dazzle camouflage, it's immediately obvious this isn't the 2014 Cooper that just debuted in L.A. Behind the B-pillar sits full-size doors (unlike those found on the Mini Clubman, which spy shots confirm will live on -- also with four-doors), smaller rear quarter glass, and a whole extra pillar. With the stretch to accommodate the extra door, the Mini gains a more rakish roofline, with a rounder hatch – taking away a bit from the traditional "bulldog" stance of the Mini. 
Aside from the extra pair of doors and new hatch, the four-door Mini Cooper looks like it retains all of the 2014 Mini Cooper's new styling cues, including its big, gaping grille, and elongated, pedestrian-friendly nose. Like the new Mini hardtop, we're expecting the four-door Mini Cooper to be powered by a 1.5-liter turbocharged I-3 making 134 hp, while the four-door Mini Cooper S will have a 2.0-liter turbocharged I-4 producing 189 hp. Both a six-speed manual and a six-speed automatic will be available.
Thanks to: Motor Trend

Recall Up Date: 2007-2008 Hyundai Entourage & 2006-2012 Kia Sedona

The Kia Sedona and its platform mate the Hyundai Entourage minivan are being recalled for lower front control arms that are susceptible to corrosion in areas where road salt is used. Vehicles originally sold or currently registered in Massachusetts, Maryland, Michigan, New Hampshire, New York, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Wisconsin, Connecticut, Delaware, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Minnesota, Missouri, New Jersey, Ohio, Rhode Island, West Virginia and the District of Columbia are affected by the recall.  

The recall affects a total of 79,867 2006-2012 Kia Sedona models, and 15,500 2007-2008 Hyundai Entourage models. If the control arm fractures, the vehicle could lose control and result in a crash. Kia owners can call 800-333-4542, Hyundai owners can call 800-633-5151 or email consumeraffairs@hmausa.com. The recall campaign is scheduled to begin in December, and affected owners will be notified by mail. The control arms will be inspected and replaced if necessary at no charge to owners. 

The Entourage was briefly offered by Hyundai as a minivan offering, but is essentially identical to the Sedona. An all-new Kia Sedona is expected for the 2015 model year with more aggressive, modern styling, improved comfort and convenience features, and more efficient powertrains.

Thanks to: Motor Trend

New Car: 2014 Ferrari 458 Italia Niki Lauda

A Ferrari owner, inspired by the story of James Hunt and Niki Lauda in the movie Rush, has gone out and bought himself a custom Ferrari 458 Italia paying tribute to Austrian Formula 1 Ferrari racing legend Lauda. Using Ferrari's new Tailor Made program, the buyer spec'd his new 458 Italia in the livery that Ferrari race cars wore during the mid-'70s. 

Primarily finished in Ferrari red, the custom 458 sports white accents all over the car, most notably on its roof, pillars, spoiler, rocker panels, and on the lower-front fascia. The white roof sports the Italian tricolore running longitudinally down the car. 

The exterior is finished off with gold wheels. The Ferrari 458 Italia's interior sees a similar treatment in paying tribute to Lauda. The racing buckets are covered in black leather with red stitching, and the colors of the Italian flag run down the center of the seats. The center console also features the red, white and green of the Italian flag, this time painted onto the bare carbon fiber trim. Other than the custom paint work, the Lauda 458 Italia is mechanically identical to the 458 that won Best Driver's Car in 2011, powered by a high-revving mid-mounted 4.5-liter V-8 making 557 hp and 398 lb-ft of torque, paired with a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission.

Thanks to: Motor Trend

Minggu, 24 November 2013

Guangzhou Show 2013 Highlights: 2014 Chery Tiggo 5

The brand new Chery Tiggo 5 SUV debuted on the 2013 Guangzhou Auto Show. The Chery Tiggo 5 will be launched on the China car market on November 28, price will start around 100.000 yuan and end around 150.000 yuan. The Tiggo 5 is the largest Chery SUV to date, it will be positioned above the ever-continuing Chery Tiggo 3 (facelifted 3 did not debut in Guangzhou).

Lone engine at launch will be a 132hp 2.0 petrol, mated to a 5-speed manual or a 7-speed CVT. In 2014 a 1.6 turbo and a 1.4 turbo will be added to the line-up. The 1.6 turbo will get 155hp and 210nm, so it will slot above the 2.0 in the lineup. The specs of the 1.4 turbo are yet unknown.Size: 4506/1841/1740, wheelbase is 2610.

The Chery Tiggo 5 will compete in a hyper competitive market with more than 30 cars from different brands fighting for the fat Chinese wallets. The Chery brand name is relatively strong China and the Tiggo 5 is a big car for the money, so Chery will likely be able to grab a piece of the pie.

Thanks to: Car News China

Guangzhou Show 2013 Highlights: 2014 Lexus CT200h

The Lexus CT200h has received a major makeover, just two years after it was first launched.

The facelift, unveiled at the Guangzhou motor show today, intends to address the biggest complaint about the current car: its unyielding ride. Lexus says that improvements have also been made to the CT200h’s overall refinement.

Perhaps most impressively, Lexus engineers have managed to further lower the CT200h's official CO2 rating. Models equipped with 16in wheels see CO2 output fall from 94g/km to 88g/km. Models fitted with 15in wheels see the CO2 figures drop from 87g/km to just 82g/km.

The front bumper and grille and rear bumper have also been redesigned to fit in with the new Lexus design language, particularly the ‘spindle grille’

According to Chika Kako, the chief engineer for the 2014 model CT200h, the balance between wanting ‘direct handling’ and achieving a more absorbent ride has been addressed by selective stiffening of the bodyshell.

To that end, structural adhesive as well as spot welds are used join the panels around the base of the A-pillars, around the rear wheel housings and around the lower tailgate opening. The tailgate structure is now also constructed using an increased number of spot welds.

Kako says that the ‘significantly enhanced’ body rigidity has allowed ‘direct’ handling to be retained even thought the springs and dampers have been retuned for a more compliant ride and a new rear anti-roll bar fitted.

In order to improve cabin refinement, revised sound proofing was fitted to the bulkhead and as many as 94 individual changes – such as the improved sealing of the holes in the bulkhead itself – were made to reduce sound transmission into the cockpit. The car also gets a revised and quieter intake system, as well as remapping of the way the engine and CVT transmission work together.

Thanks to: Autocar

Guangzhou Show 2013 Highlights: 2014 Brilliance-BMW Zinoro 1E

The very first live shots of the Brilliance-BMW Zinoro 1E, a full-electric vehicle based on the BMW X1. The Zinore E1 debuted yesterday evening in Guangzhou, two days before the start of the 2013 Guangzhou Auto Show. Zinoro, Zhinuo in Chinese, is a sub brand of the Brilliance-BMW joint venture focused on building electric cars. The 1E is their first baby, it will be launched on the China car market in March 2014 under a lease-scheme.

The Zinoro 1E is powered by a BMW-developed ‘IB1P25B’ electric motor with an output of 170hp and 250nm. Juice comes from a iron phosphate lithium-ion battery made by a Chinese company called Ningde Times New Energy Technology. Top speed is 130km/h. Range is 150km. Curb weight is a hefty 1970kg.

Thanks to: Car News China

Guangzhou Show 2013 Highlights: 2014 Volvo S60L

This is the brand new Volvo S60L sedan, seen on the 2013 Guangzhou Auto Show. The Volvo S60L is a China-only stretched variant of the Volvo S60, it is extended by 8 centimeter in the middle for more space in the back. The Volvo S60L will be launched on the China car market in December. Price will start around 220.000 yuan.

The S60L is manufactured in a new Geely-funded Volvo factory in Chengdu in central China. The Volvo S60L is the first Volvo that is manufactured in the new factory. Next up is the Volvo XC60 SUV and after that most probably a sedan-version of the successful Volvo V40.

The S60L will be powered by a 200hp 2.0 turbo (2.0T), a 241hp 2.0 turbo (T5), or a 300hp 3.0 turbo (T6). Size is: 4715mm/1866mm/1481mm, and wheelbase is 2856mm.

The Volvo S60L will compete with other China-made China-only stretched sedans such as the Audi A4L, the BMW 3Li, and the upcoming Mercedes-Benz C-Class L. The S60 somehow looks more upmarket than the Audi and the BMW, but it will have a hard time battling the new Benz.

Thanks to: Car News China

Sabtu, 23 November 2013

Guangzhou Show 2013 Highlights: 2014 Fiat Ottimo

The Fiat Ottimo, formerly known as Fiat Viaggio hatchback, has been launched on the 2013 Guangzhou Auto Show. The Ottimo will hit the China car market in December, price will start around 100.000 yuan. The Fiat Ottimo is based on the Fiat Viaggio sedan, which is basically the same car as the Italian-American Dodge Dart.

The Viaggio sedan and Ottimo hatchback are made in China by the Guangzhou-Fiat joint venture.  Fiat is also working on a Viaggio cross-kinda-wagon which will debut sometime late next year. The wagon will spawn a Dodge variant, the hatchback probably not.

Thanks to: Car News China

Guangzhou Show 2013 Highlights: 2014 Haval H8

The Haval H8 SUV has been launched on the 2013 Guangzhou Auto Show in China and at the same time on the Chinese auto market. Price starts at 201.800 yuan and ends at 236.800 yuan, making the H8 not only the largest but also the most expensive vehicle in the Great Wall Haval range.

The Haval H8 will be powered by a brand new 2.0 turbo with 218hp and 324nm, mated to a 6-speed automatic.

The engine is the strongest power plant in the whole Great Wall empire, and one of the strongest engines ever build by a local Chinese automaker. However, the Haval H8 will soon be surpassed by the even bigger and even stronger Haval H9 that will arrive sometime next year.

Very clean design although not overly exciting. The Haval H8 will be exported as well, to markets as far as Australia, Europe, North Africa, Russia, and the Middle East. Great Wall recons the Haval H8 will be its most profitable export product. The current export range consists mostly of low-spec pickup trucks and cheaper SUV’s with much lower margins. The H8 will bring in cash, or so Great Wall hopes.

Thanks to: Car News China

Guangzhou Show 2013 Highlights: 2014 Changan BenBen

This is the new Changan BenBen, it debuted today at the 2013 Guangzhou Auto Show. The Changan BenBen will be launched on the China car market just before the end of this year, Price will range from 40.000 to 60.000 yuan. The new BenBen comes with a razor sharp design but the greatest surprise hides inside.

The extremely funky dashboard with a central speed pod, wing-like red cladding, airplane engine-like air vents, a large touch screen in the center console. Best thing however is the gear lever, which is missing, replaced by a very coolio knob, with the Changan logo on top. First time we see this on a mini car, in the world. Brilliant work!

Power will come from a new 1.4 with 100hp and 136nm, mated to a 5-speed manual or a 4-speed automatic. A 1.2 with about 80hp will joint the line-up later. Size: 3730/1650/1530, wheelbase is 2410 and curb weight is 1020kg. Top speed is 156km/h and fuel consumption is 5.6 liter per 100km. The new BenBen is Changan’s answer to the new and already very successful Chery QQ.

Thanks to: Car News China

Guangzhou Show 2013 Highlights: 2014 Bentley Mulsanne Four Seasons Edition

This is the $1.46 million Bentley Mulsanne Four Seasons Edition Golden Pine for the Chinese car market, a  China-only special edition based on the Mulsanne Mulliner. The Four Seasons Edition is a massive special edition consisting of five different cars and a grand total of 45 vehicles. The Four Seasons Edition debuted today on the 2013 Guangzhou Auto Show.

This golden car is ‘earth’ and its interior is themed around the pine tree, hence the name ‘Golden Pine’. Note golden pine drawing on the right side of the dashboard, which is made of pine tree wood. The Golden Pine is the most rare of the Four Seasons. Bentley will only make five examples. The other Four Seasons, which are made up of the actual four seasons, are limited to ten each.

The Bentley Mulsanne Four Seasons Edition Golden Pine comes with two-tone gold paint, a 24K gold Bentley hood ornament, loads of palm trees inside, and a few kinda cheap-looking golden pine badges.

More pine tree drawings on the tray tables, which are made of pine tree wood. When the table is in use the pine tree drawing is not visible. The Bentley Mulsanne Four Seasons Edition Golden Pine costs 8.888.888 million yuan or 1.46 million USD. The other four seasons go for 6.888.888 million yuan or 1.13 million USD. Eight and six are both lucky numbers in China.

Thanks to: Car News China

Guangzhou Show 2013 Highlights: Guangzhou Auto WitStar Concept

This is the fish pod in the Guangzhou Auto WitStar Concept that debuted earlier today on the 2013 Guangzhou Auto Show. The WitStar showcases technology for autonomous driving. The fish are used to prove that the WitStar is capable of avoiding obstacles. A autonomous crash would break the pod and kill the fish. The fish pod is an integral part of the WitStar’s design, the pod sits in a specially constructed bay in the rear bench, which thus only can seat two.

The passengers in the front, because they are mere passengers in an autonomous vehicle, can turn their seats around and join the action in the pod, while driving.

The WitStar is equipped with cameras and computers that can make a 3D image of the surrounding world, and plan a safe way home. However, Guangzhou Auto didn’t demonstrate the system on the show. The vehicle stood static on a platform. It somehow doesn’t look too real, check this dashboard:

It seems to be made out of foam and carton. But anyway, this is a concept car and concept cars are almost always completely or partly fake. The idea is what matters for a concept car, and the WitStar scores very high here, being able to safely carry gold fish around.

The WitStar is ‘powered’ by an electric motor assisted by a petrol-powered range extender. Top speed is 160km/h. Acceleration from 0 to 50 (fifty) km/h takes 4.5 seconds. Range on pure electric is 100 km, and range with the extender on is 600km. 

Thanks to: Car News China

Guangzhou Show 2013 Highlights: 2014 Rolls-Royce Ghost Canton Glory

This is the brand new Rolls-Royce Ghost Canton Glory, a China-only special edition based on the Ghost LWB. The Ghost Canton Glory debuted today on the 2013 Guangzhou Auto Show. The name ‘Canton’ refers to the historical name of Guangzhou. The Canton Glory is limited to only two examples.

The Canton Glory comes in a special wine red-white color scheme and the interior is in wine-red and gray. The Canton Glory is an ode to the Canton Tower (wiki), one of the tallest TV towers in the world and a famous Guangzhou landmark. An artistic (as in: doesn’t look like) drawing of the Canton Tower is stitched in the head rests, printed on the dashboard, and stickered on the sides.

Note drawing of the Canton Tower on the lid covering the screen. When the screen is in use the drawing is not visible. Wine red and gray not a very luxurious looking combination. 

Special Commissioned for the Guangzhou Auto Show One of Two. No word yet on price but such a limited limited edition will likely be very expensive. Price of the base Ghost LWB starts at 5.11 million yuan or 838.000 USD. The Canton Glory will be at least a million more.

Thanks to: Car News China

Guangzhou Show 2013 Highlights: Citroen DS5 Golden Pearl Concept

This is the new Citroen DS5 Golden Pearl, it debuted today on the 2013 Guangzhou Auto Show. The Citroen DS5 Golden Pearl is a concept previewing a super luxurious variant of the China-made Citroen DS5. The name refers to the Pearl River that flows through Guangzhou city. The Golden Pearl is painted in matte gold with red touches and stands on racy wheels with speedy matte silver alloys. The interior however, is even better:

The whole inside is clad in ebony wood and calfskin leather, making for a very impressive cabin. Even the leather around the gear lever is completely made out of calfskin. The steering wheel is a stunning piece of art by its own right. Thick carpets are made of wool.

Thanks to: Car News China

Guangzhou Show 2013 Highlights: 2014 MG5 Turbo

The sorta speedy MG5 Turbo, also known as MG5 1.5T, debuted today at the 2013 Guangzhou Auto Show, and it was launched on the China car market at the same time. Price starts at 119.700 yuan and ends at 140.700 yuan. The MG5 Turbo differs from its naturally aspirated sister by a red stripe in the grille and a chrome bar in the bumper.

The interior comes with seats that look a little bit more sporty and a few MG5 Turbo badges. Power comes from a turbocharged 1.5 liter four-cylinder petrol engine with 129hp and 210nm, mated to a new 6-speed automatic gearbox. If 135 horses doesn’t sound like a lot, remember that the non-turbo version has only 109hp. These Chinese MG cars are no racers yet.

Thanks to: Car News China

Tokyo Show 2013 Highlights: Subaru Crossover 7 Concept

Just last week, Subaru president Yasuyuki Yoshinaga said that the company would replace the unsuccessful Tribeca SUV with a new seven-seater model in the near future. 
We don't know yet if Subaru's new Crossover 7 Concept that was released today at the Tokyo Motor Show is that car, but you must admit, it sure comes close, fitting the bill. 
Displayed alongside the new production-intent Levorg estate and the Cross Sport concepts, the Crossover 7 is described in Subaru's press literature as a "seven-seat SUV designed to combine the rigors of urban family use with true off-road driving capability".
Obviously, there's a boxer engine hiding under the hood linked to Subaru's all-wheel drive system, but that's all we can tell you for now about this new concept as official information remains limited at this time.

Thanks to: Carscoops  

Tokyo Show 2013 Highlights: Daihatsu FC凸Deck Concept

When we first saw the Daihatsu FC凸DECK (also called the FC Deco Deck), we couldn't get over its funny name, but this cab-over kei car could signal a whole new level of efficiency wrapped in a very small package. Unveiled at the Tokyo Motor Show, the Daihatsu FC Deco Deck is powered by a liquid fuel cell and a compact generator, and the Japanese automaker suggests that this technology might someday be used in low-cost vehicles.

Looking like the back of a Nissan Cube mounted atop a piece of luggage, Daihatsu says that the platform used for the FC Deco Deck allows greater freedom for the design of fuel-cell vehicles. In addition to the FC Deco Deck, Daihatsu is also showing off two generators (the FC-Dock 20C and FC-Dock 5C) for use of this technology outside of the automotive world.

Thanks to: Autoblog

Tokyo Show 2013 Highlights: 2014 Toyota Harrier

Historically, the Toyota Harrier has been a doppelgänger for North America's Lexus RX – at some points, it was little more than a badge-swap and a few options away, at least aesthetically. That appears to be changing with this just-revealed new generation at the Tokyo Motor Show.

That's because this two-row, five-seat Toyota is in possession of a bold new look, dominated by a jutting, baleen-like grille edged in chrome, along with new headlamps and fascia. The greenhouse has likewise been revamped and gotten more pointed at the rump, which has new taillights, a resurfaced tailgate and a faux rear diffuser. Were it to be ported over to North American Lexus dealers intact, the Harrier's look would be jarring in light of the brand's spindle-grille-based design language, so we suspect that if the RX gets any of these updates (it was just refreshed for 2013), it will strike out on a different path visually.

Unlike the US RX, the new Harrier will rely on smaller-displacement four-cylinder engines, namely a 2.0-liter paired with a continuously variable transmission or a 2.5-liter four backed up by an electric motor. We'd like to see a smaller-displacement option for the US RX (it presently runs with 3.5-liter V6 engines in both gas-only and hybrid guise), but suspect it won't arrive until the next all-new model.

Tokyo Show 2013 Highlights: 2014 Nissan Leaf Aero Style

Here we have the Nissan Leaf Aero Style, which the automaker says "offers 100% electric vehicle performance in a new stylish and sporty shape." We call it a Nissan Leaf with a not-terribly-attractive body kit and two-tone wheels. Suffice it to say, it's not much like the conceptual version Nissan showed off at the Tokyo Motor Show back in 2011...

Our blunt assessment of the Leaf Aero Style doesn't necessarily mean it's bad, of course. It's still, best we can tell, a Nissan Leaf through and through, which means it has the same 107 horsepower, 187 pound-feet of torque and 24-kWh battery pack as every other new Leaf. That, in turn, means it has an official range of 75 miles (though you're probably better off assuming you can get 50 or so miles per charge in the real world) and a top speed of 90 miles per hour.

The Nissan Leaf Aero Style will go on sale in Japan in December of 2013, and there's no word on whether or not it will make its way to the States. There's also no official word on whether the Aero Style is actually any more aerodynamic than the standard Leaf, one of the slipperier cars on the market.

Thanks to: Autoblog

Tokyo Show 2013 Highlights: Mazda 3 Hybrid & CNG Concept

Mazda has received a tremendous amount of public and industry praise in the last few years, following up the successful introduction of its Skyactiv technology (powertrain and otherwise), with strong products like CX-5, Mazda6 and most recently, the Mazda3. At the Tokyo Motor Show, Mazda has taken yet another step forward with Skyactiv and the 3, showing the compact (called "Axela" in Japan) with an all-new compressed natural gas engine in the Skyactiv-CNG Concept.

Mazda thinks that CNG-powered vehicles are due for an uptick in demand, and the company believes this new powertrain will add valuable breadth to the Mazda3 range. The CNG Concept is actually a duel-fuel vehicle, capable of running on either natural gas or gasoline. In fact, we're told that the high compression ratio (14:1) inherent in Skyactiv-technology gasoline engines makes conversion to CNG particularly simple.

Perhaps more interesting is the unveiling of Mazda's first-ever hybrid powertrain, aptly named Skyactiv-Hybrid. The new system, which is only slated for the Japanese market at this point, connects an electric motor to a 2.0-liter four-cylinder gas engine, using it to assist at low engine speeds and under low-load conditions. The electric motor is supplied by a nickel-metal hydride battery of unstated capacity.

The end result of the Skyactiv-Hybrid in the Mazda3 is fuel consumption estimated at 3.2 liters per 1,000 kilometers on the lenient Japanese cycle, or something like 74 miles per gallon, and total system output of around 134 horsepower (136 PS).

Thanks to: Autoblog

Jumat, 22 November 2013

Tokyo Show 2013 Highlights: Subaru Viviz Evolution Concept

The Subaru Viziv Evolution concept has had its world debut at the Tokyo motor show.

The car is an updated form of the original Viziv concept seen at the Geneva motor show earlier this year, and is designed to demonstrate both the brand's direction in both design and technology.

Subaru says the new Viziv Evolution crossover is powered by a plug-in hybrid system comprising a 1.6-litre direct-injection turbo engine, coupled to a CVT, and three electric motors.

One electric motor would assist the front axle, while a pair of electric motors would drive the back axle. Energy would be stored in lithium-ion batteries.

Subaru states the concept will also feature a prototype “autopilot” system, which appears to allow semi-autonomous driving.

Thanks to: Autocar

Tokyo Show 2013 Highlights: 2014 Nissan Dayz Roox

Even average production cars from Japan often seem very conceptual to US eyes. Throw in typical, nonsensical-quasi-English-words name like "Dayz Roox" and you'd be forgiven for thinking this Nissan box on wheels was still a designer's dream. But the fact is that the Nissan Dayz is a model currently on sale, and this Roox version is the latest take on the micro-van, which is a popular segment in Japan.

In fact, this generation of Dayz is the first minicar that Nissan has developed completely in-house, and the thing has been selling astoundingly well in its first stint on the market (30k units in month one month, says Nissan). So it's unsurprising that the company is looking to expand the range with a model that is more fully featured.

The Roox (we have no clue as to where that name came from, or what it means) would appear to be a high-roof version of the three-cylinder Dayz minicar – in fact Nissan goes so far as to call it an "Impressive Super Height Wagon." Features like automatic sliding doors, Around View Monitor and UV-insulated glass are all luxuries in kei-class car. The press release also specifies that the Roox is tall enough to swallow a 27-inch bicycle.

Thanks to: Autoblog

Tokyo Show 2013 Highlights: 2014 Porsche Panamera Turbo S

The revised Porsche Panamera Turbo S has been revealed, and is pictured here for the first time.
Porsche has raised the already imposing performance potential of the Turbo S, giving the facelifted model a 20bhp boost in reserves to take the output of its twin-turbocharged 4.8-litre V8 up to 562bhp – 49bhp more than the recently introduced facelifted Panamera Turbo.

To be revealed to the public at the upcoming Tokyo motor show prior to the start of UK sales in February 2014, the range-topping Panamera model adopts the various exterior and interior styling upgrades brought to other less powerful Panamera models earlier this year.

Included in the mid-life make-over is a new front bumper with larger air intakes and redesigned head lamps with LED operation.

Bigger changes are concentrated at the rear, which receives a larger rear window within the tailgate along with a colour-keyed four-way spoiler and a new bumper which now houses the licence plate.
Together with the standard model, Porsche now offers the Panamera Turbo S in Executive form with a 150mm longer wheelbase in selected markets, both running  20-inch 911 Turbo-style wheels shod with 285/40 and 295/35 profile tyres as standard.

At the heart of the facelifted Panamera Turbo S is a lightly revised version of its predecessor’s twin-turbocharged 4.8-litre V8. It gains new turbochargers boasting a larger compressor for improved air flow and combustion.

Further changes are concentrated on the injection system, which now operates at a pressure of 140 bar – up from a previous 120 bar. New pistons and piston rings featuring a newly developed aluminium coasting are also used.

Despite delivering more power than before, the reworked engine continues to serve up a nominal 553lb ft of torque, but on a slightly wider range of revs between 2250 and 5000rpm.

An overboost function sees the maximum torque rating raised to 590lb ft, but only for short bursts of full throttle action.

Thanks to: Autocar

Tokyo Show 2013 Highlights: Daihatsu Deca Deca Concept

Besides the Kopen roadster, there was another fascinating Tokyo 2013 concept from Daihatsu that caught our eye. The Daihatsu Deca Deca concept is described as a ‘super space’ vehicle – one look into the cabin and you’ll know why.

Great packaging is not a hidden talent at the compact car specialist, but Deca Deca takes things up a notch – it’s surely a more comfortable and spacious place to sleep in than this city’s capsule hotels. The tall van (1,850 mm), powered by a 660 cc turbo triple, offers a commanding viewpoint and a sense of openness together with utility for outdoor pursuits.

The double doors reveal a huge opening with no obstructing pillars, making it easy to roll in whatever you desire. The seats can be arranged in a variety of poses or folded flat to make a bed. Whatever you do in there, shielded by those tall sides, is up to you.

Thanks to: Paultan

Tokyo Show 2013 Highlights: 2014 Nissan Serena

Nissan has made some minor changes to the Nissan Serena, which also covers the S-Hybrid model that’s on sale here in Malaysia. The updated Serena makes its debut at the 2013 Tokyo Motor Show and will go on sale in December 2013 in Japan.

In terms of exterior design, we notice changes to the front bumper as well as the removal of a strip of trim that runs along the lower edge of the headlamps to meet the front grille. This gives the car’s face a different look as the headlamp shape is more pronounced now. LED headlamps are now an option. The alloy wheel design has also been updated.

On the rear, we’re told there are new LED rear combination brake lamps with an ’S’ shaped design, but we don’t have a photo of the rear yet as of now.

There are new safety equipment as well such as Emergency Brake and Lane Departure Warning (LDW), which has been made standard for all variants except the base 20S. Other features include AVM (Around View Monitor) with MOD (Moving Object Detection), Emergency Assist for pedal misapplication and Driver Attention Alert.

Nissan also claims the 2WD S-Hybrid model now has improved fuel consumption but doesn’t go into details on what the differences are.

Thanks to: Paultan

LA Show 2013 Highlights: 2015 GMC Yukon & Yukon XL

The middle child of General Motors' trio of truck-based SUVs, the GMC Yukon and long-wheelbase Yukon XL, received their auto show debut at today's 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show. Showing off a bigger, bolder look, particularly on its Denali trim, the Yukon sports prominent chrome grille instantly identifies GMC's new top-end SUV.

The Yukon is will come to market with a pair of engines. The base 5.3-liter V8 pumps out 355 horsepower and 383 pound-feet of torque, while the higher-end models benefit from the same direct-injected, 6.2-liter V8 as the Escalade. That engine makes 420 horsepower and 450 pound-feet of torque, with fuel economy seeing a likely boost thanks to an active fuel management system. Like the Tahoe, Suburban and Escalade, the Yukon takes advantage of a six-speed, column-mounted automatic transmission.

The cabin has seen significant upgrades in terms of materials and technology, with an eight-inch touchscreen display and IntelliLink standard in both Yukon and Yukon Denali. Fold-flat second and third-row seats come standard, while a power option is available, as well. Other techy features include active noise cancellation and standard Bose stereos.

Thanks to: Autoblog

LA Show 2013 Highlights: 2015 Chevrolet Suburban & Tahoe

The Chevrolet Suburban and its short-wheelbase cousin, the Tahoe, have both seen significant redesigns, which are being shown off live at the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show. The new looks, with the dual-tiered headlights and bold grille aren't a radical departure from the current Suburban/Tahoe's design. Accompanied by an overhauled interior, the new models are a solid improvement over the previous models.

Unlike the rest of GM's large, truck-based SUVs, the Tahoe and Suburban's engine bay is home to a 5.3-liter V8, rather than the brawnier 6.2-liter found in the Escalade and Yukon. With 355 horsepower and 383 pound-feet of torque, it's still more potent than the previous models' engines, but is down considerably on the 420 hp and 460 lb-ft of torque in the higher-end SUVs. Despite the lower power output, the 5.3 is fitted with the same suite of fuel-saving features found on the other GM SUVs, including active fuel management with cylinder deactivation.

In the cabin, Chevrolet's MyLink system sits front and center on higher-end models, complete with an eight-inch touchscreen. Push-button start is the marquis standard feature, although other items like power fold-flat seats, 20- and 22-inch wheels are optional extras.

Thanks to: Autoblog

LA Show 2013 Highlights: 2015 Cadillac Escalade

The new Cadillac Escalade sauntered out onto the Los Angeles Auto Show stage, showing off its new familial face and redesigned interior. That exterior, with its slim, wrap-over headlights and tall, vertical taillights (both made up of LEDs) is a subtle but significant departure from the past styling of General Motors' flagship SUV.

And while there's no shortage of stuff to discuss about the Caddy's exterior, its cabin is where the big changes happen. Aside from the column-mounted shifter, the cabin receives a heavy going-over, receiving Cadillac's new CUE infotainment system and a significant upgrade to the materials. Comparing it to furniture, Eric Clough, Cadillac's director of design for interiors, said, "An exceptional level of craftsmanship has gone into the redesign of the 2015 Cadillac Escalade, and it all centers on the premium materials and extensive use of cut-and-sew live stitching."

Under hood sits a 420-horsepower, 460-pound-foot, 6.2-liter V8. Fitted with direct injection and active fuel management, fuel economy for the big Escalade should get a much-needed boost beyond the current model's 14-city and 18-highway miles per gallon, although official numbers haven't been published quite yet. A six-speed automatic is the sole gearbox choice. Cadillac has also fitted the new Escalade with GM's magnetic ride control system, which should deliver a more refined ride than its predecessor.

The 2014 Escalade will be available in both standard and long-wheelbase ESV variants, along with two and four-wheel drive (naturally).

Thanks to: Autoblog

LA Show 2013 Highlights: 2014 Jeep Wrangler Willys Wheeler Edition

The original Jeep was developed for military service and won its reputation on the battlefields of World War II. In 1945, after the guns had gone silent, the first civilian Jeeps (“CJs”) were made available to the public. It is those first models—the Willys-Overland CJ-2A, and its successor, the CJ-3A—that are celebrated today with the debut of the Jeep Wrangler Willys Wheeler Edition at the L.A. auto show.

When it goes on sale early next year, the two-door Willys Wheeler Edition will start at $26,790 and the Unlimited four-door models at $30,590. That pricing reflects a premium of $3400 for either version, but there is quite a bit that comes with the package.

To create the Willys Wheeler, Jeep starts with a Wrangler Sport and adds to it a host of go-anywhere goodies. A Dana 44 rear axle features a Trac-Lok limited-slip rear differential with a 3.73 ratio. The Jeep Command-Trac part-time all-wheel-drive system has a two-speed transfer case with a 2.72:1 low-range gear ratio. It puts the power to the pavement—or rocks, or trails—via unique high-gloss-black 17-inch aluminum wheels shod with knobby BFGoodrich KM Mud Terrain tires (LT255/75R17s). Rock rails help protect the undercarriage and a new Jeep Trail Rated Kit includes a D-ring, tow strap, and gloves in case the terrain gets the better of the Wrangler’s tractive abilities.

On the exterior, Jeep’s iconic seven-slot grille has a gloss-black finish topped with a black “Jeep” badge, while gloss-black appliques cover the front and rear bumpers. Decals are present and accounted for, too: The tailgate sports a satin-black “4 Wheel Drive” decal, and “Willys” decals grace the sides of the hood. A Sunrider soft top is standard; either a premium Sunrider soft top or a black-splatter Freedom Top are available. Under the hood, the Willys Wheeler features the 285-hp, 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6; a six-speed manual is standard and a five-speed automatic is optional. The Willys Wheeler Edition will be available in all Wrangler colors.

Thanks to: Car and Driver

LA Show 2013 Highlights: 2015 Fiat 500 1957 Edition

Automakers love to create anniversary editions to spur sales. Tenth anniversary Miatas, 50th anniversary 911s, oodles of commemorative Corvettes, but is a 57-year celebration really necessary? Leave it to Fiat to present us with a 2014 500 tagged as the 1957 Edition in the 57th year since the brand’s first Nuova 500 was produced. This step back would be lost on Americans, enamored with tail-finned Chevys and Plymouth Furys that year, but history must be served. That Nuova 500 was conceived by Dante Giacosa, the genius who also penned the prewar Fiat Topolino, two little machines as important to Italy as Ford’s Model T was to the U.S.

But what does a tribute to 1957 get you today? Well, Fiat begins with its Lounge trim level and adds throwback exterior finishes Bianco, Verde Chiaro, and Celeste. (That’s white, light green, and baby blue for those not familiar with Italiano.) The 16-inch retro-look wheels are finished in body color and white, housing vintage Fiat emblems, and a white roof and white mirror caps are available.

That exterior is a nice touch, but it’s the dashboard that really takes you back. Both its shape and Avorio (ivory) finish are reminiscent of the 1950s. Leave it to the Italians to effectively mix ivory, Grigio (gray), and Marrone (brown); the latter used on the leather seats, the door panels, the inside of the steering wheel, and shifter boot. Contrasting ivory stitching over the rich leather seats looks very uptown. Our biggest disappointment is that rather than including a ’50s-era tube radio, Fiat opted for a six-speaker, 276-watt audio system.

The Fiat 500 1957 Edition is powered by the same 1.4-liter four-cylinder found throughout the Italians’ American lineup, although engine specifics are not available. The mill will back up to a choice of a five-speed manual or a six-speed automatic. Pricing information should become available closer to the ’57 Edition’s on-sale date of next spring.

Thanks to: Car and Driver

LA Show 2013 Highlights: 2014 Dodge Charger 100th Anniversary Edition

The year 2014 marks 100 years of doing business for Dodge, and it’d be foolish to think the milestone might slip past without the automaker issuing at least a few commemorative special editions. For the opening round of what’s certain to become an entire year of centennial-themed promotions, Dodge has chosen to release 100th Anniversary editions of the Challenger and the Charger, two current models that also hold a prominent place in the maker’s past.

Chargers get a 10-speaker, 552-watt Beats by Dre audio system that incorporates a Beats proprietary equalizer algorithm, said to “create the high-definition sound quality required in professional recording studios;” Challengers make do with a seven-speaker, 368-watt Boston Acoustics system. Both feature a Uconnect start-up graphic that’s said to evoke Detroit’s industrial legacy, and a pair of 100th-anniversary key fobs, customized owners kits, and a commemorative book chronicling 100 years of Dodge history.

Dodge Charger 100th Anniversary edition buyers have their pick of two flavors, mild or wild: a Charger SXT Plus–based model that comes with the 300-hp, 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6; or a Charger R/T Plus–based version packs the maker’s 370-hp, 5.7-liter Hemi V-8. Both will add $2200 to the sticker. Likewise, the Dodge Challenger 100th Anniversary edition comes in two strengths: Challenger SXT Plus guise with a 305-hp, 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6; or the Challenger R/T Plus, which rides in on the maker’s 375-hp, 5.7-liter HEMI V-8. Both special-edition Challengers add a $2500 premium.

The 100th Anniversary editions will begin arriving in dealerships in the first quarter of 2014, but as Chrysler tells us, they’ll only be available in limited quantities, so Mopar fans looking to get their history on and speculators will want to act swiftly.

Thanks to: Car and Driver

Tokyo Show 2013 Highlights: Mitsubishi GC-PHEV Concept

Mitusbishi has revealed three new concept vehicles, which will be unveiled at the Tokyo motor show in November.

The Mitsubishi GC-PHEV concept has made its world debut at the Tokyo motor show.

The concept is a plug-in hybrid SUV, and uses Mitsubishi's electronic all-wheel drive system, named Super All-Wheel Control, to deliver what the company describes as "superior handling, stability as well as the all-terrain capability an SUV offers".

The concept also utilises both the latest driver safety systems, and also offers wi-fi driver support - making it what Mitsubishi describes as a 'connected vehicle'. The model could form the basis of a replacement for the current Shogun. The concept is powered by a 3.0-litre V6 engine coupled to a high-output electric motor and an 8-speed automatic gearbox.

Dimensions for the SUV are 4930mm in length, 1940mm wide and 1980mm high.  The interior is dominated by a 'tactical table' - a cabin-length TV screen mounted on top of the central transmission tunnel. It displays occupants data, data from the car itself and maps. Mitsubishi says "It allows the creation of original maps and driving plans that occupants can share as they connect with the world."
The GC-PHEV concept forms one of a four-strong lineup from Mitsubishi, alongside models like the XR-PHEV compact plug-in hybrid SUV and the Concept AR MPV. The company is also showing its boxy eK Space model, which has already been earmarked for launch in Japan next year according to internet reports.

The company has already told Autocar that much of its future model line-ups rely on electrification and hybridisation. Last year, the company said it wanted to refresh its entire model range - beginning with the launch of the new Outlander earlier this year. Plans for the new Evo have also been revealed, with the car taking on a new plug-in hybrid persona to rival the Nissan GT-R.

A Mitsubishi spokesman told Autocar “Mitsubishi Motors in the UK has a significant amount of experience in the MPV market, launching the first seven-seat MPV, SpaceWagon, into the UK in 1983, followed by Grandis in 2004. Mitsubishi also sold the smaller MPV, Space Star, for six years in the UK.”

Mitsibushi also stated it aims for 20 per cent of its sales volume to be EVs by 2020.

Thanks to: Autocar

Tokyo Show 2013 Highlights: Toyota JPN Taxi Concept

Toyota has unveiled its JPN Taxi concept for the first time at the Tokyo motor show.

Intended to show the company's vision for the next generation of Japanese Taxis, the concept is designed for five-passengers. Power in the JPN Taxi comes from a hybrid LPG powertrain. The firm says it has incorporated design elements from the London Taxi into its styling.

Toyota also says the JPN-Taxi conforms fully to the Japanese regulations for user-friendly public service vehicles.

The company will also show two new seven-seat MPV concepts, dubbed Voxy and Noah. Toyota has yet to reveal specific details about the models, including powertrain and pricing, but both cars are due to launch in early 2014.

The firm will also show its FT86 concept, based on the GT86 sports car. Toyota says the concept has been "created to explore future sports car variations".

Toyota's previously seen i-Road personal mobility vehicle was also unveiled shown, as well as other concepts including the hydrogen-powered FCV and the FV2.

Thanks to: Autocar

Tokyo Show 2013 Highlights: Toyota FCV Concept

Toyota has showcased a production version of its FCV concept at the Tokyo motor show.

The new model previews Toyota's work with hydrogen fuel cell technology, and is already planned for launch in 2015. The car has a reported range of at least 300 miles on a full tank, and has a refuelling time of three minutes.

The exterior shape of the FCV is incredibly aerodynamic to improve drag, while the front end has large air intakes. Numerous references to water have been incorporated into its design, says Toyota, a reminder of the only waste product to be produced by hydrogen-powered vehicles. The FCV is designed to carry four people. Its engine has a maximum output of 134bhp.

It measures 4870mm long, by 1810mm wide with a height of 1535mm and a wheelbase of 2780mm. Read Autocar's first drive in a prototype of the FCV here.

Thanks to: Autocar
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