Car News

After years, of patent leaks, spy shots, and endless rumors about its feasibility, the Cadillac LTS flagship sedan may finally become a reality. That’s the sentiment within the ranks at Cadillac after a high-level source told Autoblog that the RWD, flagship, luxury sedan is being developed in time to make its debut at the New York Auto Show in April 2015. That’s still a long ways away, so it should give Cadillac enough time to prepare its long-awaited answer to the likes of the Mercedes S-Class , the Audi A8 , and the BMW 7 Series .

Autoblog is also reporting certain design elements of the Elmiraj Coupe Concept we saw at the 2013 Pebble Beach Concours d’ Elegance will make their way to the LTS sedan. That’s a great way to establish a luxury identity for the LTS, because the Elmiraj is everything we hoped a Cadillac flagship sedan would be. While we don’t expect the LTS to be identical to the Elmiraj, we’re looking forward to seeing what Cadillac has in store for the model.

If anything, the company needs to be on its A game in developing the LTS. Last we checked, the S-Class, A8, and 7 Series were all heavyweights of the luxury sedan market. The 2015 S-Class, in particular, was a dramatic improvement from its own predecessor, re-validating Mercedes Mercedes ’ place in the pecking order of the segment. Cadillac will definitely have a lot of pressure on its hands, although the Caddy source did tell Autoblog that the company is prepared to embrace the challenge.

At this point, we’re holding our judgment on that one, at least not until we see the LTS in the flesh in April 2015. You still have time on your hands, Cadillac. You better make the most out of it if the LTS wants to live up to the hype.

Updated 09/19/2014: Cadillac officially confirmed that it will manufacture its new, top-end, high-tech car at the Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant starting the fourth quarter of 2015. According to the company this new sedan "uses completely new, custom-designed materials on a unique vehicle architecture." Also, the new model will make its public debut in the first half of next year.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2016 Cadillac LTS.

Source: Autoblog

Needing the right tool for the job often requires ingenuity. That’s exactly the case at Nissan’s Stanfield, Arizona proving grounds. The team of engineers needed a truck-like vehicle to haul test gear, but something that got great gas mileage around the 3,050-acre complex.

Meet Sparky, the wild idea a few Nissan engineers cooked up while trying to solve the dilemma. The team started with a stock Nissan LEAF, the all-electric hatchback and combined it with several parts scavenged off a Nissan Frontier pickup. The combination is something of a Frankenstein, but it gets the job done.

Not using a drop of fuel, little Sparky makes his way across the grounds and helps out with testing of future Nissan products. "I needed a project for a team building activity so we can bring the team together. We had a need for a truck . Something to drive around, a shop truck," says Roland Schellenberg, one of Nissan’s masterminds behind Sparky.

Helping build Sparky was Arnold Moulinet. “I went home and stayed up till like four in the morning making all kinds of designs for what would work,” he says. “We basically got the stock Leaf, and after reviewing a bunch of designs of pickup trucks that we have here at Nissan, we decided to go with a Frontier bed.”

Now the Nissan development team has an electrically powered mini truck that functions as park of the team. “It’s something that we all put together,” says Schellenberg. “We all share, so it has a little bit of everybody in there.”

In the land of the Interwebz where exaggeration is the norm and idiocracy runs rampant, there lies this video : Monster Energy’s Ballistic BJ Baldwin Recoil 2 – Unleashed in Ensenada, Mexico. I kid you not; this video contains the most ridiculous driving I’ve ever seen. Period.

Let me back up.

‘Ballistic BJ Baldwin’ is a five-time national off-road racing champion and driver of the Monster Energy Trophy Truck. BBB has more than 17 years of off-road racing under his belt with impressive back-to-back wins at The Best in The Desert Trophy Truck Championship in 2010 and 2011. His other wins include a 2006 and 2008 victory at the SCORE-International Trophy Truck competition. Needless to say, he lives up to his ‘ballistic’ title.

His latest publicity stunt comes a year after the first ‘Recoil’ flick. Unlike Hollywood, BBB’s second Recoil totally outdid the first. There’s more slow-motion suspension action happening here than a Stephen King book has suspense. If you’ve ever wanted to see an independent front suspension and a live rear axle with a long-arm kit work, this is your video.

BBB’s 800-horsepower Chevrolet Silverado trophy truck careens through the little seaside town of Ensenada, Mexico, hitting incredible jumps and diving from impossible heights. Ensenada is no stranger to trophy trucks, however, as the town is home to the Baja 1000.

There’s a bit of a story line to the whole sequence, if the ridiculous action doesn’t enthrall you. So follow along for the most insane seven minutes of your life.

Click past the jump to watch the original Recoil

Source: SpeedSociety

Imagine if Ferrari made you a custom wallet that was as futuristic and modern as the LaFerrari supercar . There is a good chance that it may look like the Billetus. The Billetus is a minimalist wallet form the mind of Dennis Kaping that uses modern exotic materials like carbon fiber, aluminum, and titanium to create a unique and bold minimalist wallet that has lots of visual substance with very little weight.

The wallet comes in two flavors. The first is the solid-aluminum Billetus Minimus that holds five cards and five folded bills, while the larger Billetus Maximus adds carbon fiber and titanium to the build sheet and will hold seven to eight cards comfortably as well as five bills. What makes the Billetus wallet unique from other minimalist wallets is its rigid structure and compact dimensions. The stiff shell structure means that it will hold its shape permanently, and it won’t swell with every item you place in it. It also has notably smaller than other designs of this nature. At 9.5 mm (0.37 inches) thick for the larger Billetus Maximus, it is only slightly thicker than a modern smartphone like the Samsung Glalaxy S5 or the iPhone 5c.

If this wallet sounds like something you would be interested in buying, it needs your help to make it to the market. The project is currently on Kickstarter, and it is $4,000 away from its goal. There are 35 days left before the funding period ends, so there is plenty of time for you to get your pledge in. Pledges range from just $5 all the way up to $575. The smallest donation to secure yourself a Billetus Minimus is $45, and you can get a Maximus for a pledge of $105.

Click past the jump to read more about Billetus.

Source: kickstarter

We’ve seen a lot BMW -badged safety cars recently, including the M4 Coupe DTM safety car and the BMW i8 that paces the newly founded Formula E series . Needless to say, Munich’s vehicles are quite common with racing events, but IMSA is among the very few sanctioning bodies that prefer other marques. For this year’s Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge race at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas, IMSA opted for the 2015 Nissan 370Z Nismo . The coupe, as you may remember, received an extensive facelift in 2014.

Seeing the 370Z make its debut as a safety car in North America isn’t surprising at all. Nissan is an official partner of IMSA, the sanctioning body for both the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge and the TUDOR United SportsCar Championships, and has fielded multiple race cars throughout the 2014 season. In addition, the Japanese automaker also provides powerplants to various independent companies. The Circuit of the Americas race, scheduled for September 19th, will also include Nissan racers. Two 370Z Nismos and a couple of Altima-based race cars will battle for victory in Texas.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Nissan 370Z Nismo.

Audi looks to be putting the finishing touches on is upcoming 2015 RS 3 Sportback as this test mule runs ‘round the Ring. Spotted thanks to its larger, more aggressive front lower fascia, lowered suspension, and the aggressive note spewing from the four oval exhaust tips, this Audi means business.

Under the hood, we expect the Audi to have a turbocharged, 2.5-liter, inline five-cylinder engine and Quattro all-wheel drive. This updated version of the same I-5 mill found in the previous RS 3 will likely find a home in the new TT RS as well. Rumors suggest the engine could produce more than 360 horsepower and 343 pound-feet of torque. Backing the five-banger would likely be the seven-speed, S-tronic dual-clutch found elsewhere in the Audi lineup.

What’s more important is the U.S. has an actual shot at getting the RS 3 Sportback on its shores. If you’ll recall, Audi set a goal back in 2011 of doubling sales of its sporty RS-branded cars in the United States by 2015. Well, the time has come, and the RS 3 Sportback is a likely candidate. The likelihood increases further considering Audi needs a competitor to the Mercedes CLA45 AMG and BMW M2 .

We expect to see the 2015 Audi RS 3 Sportback officially unveiled at the 2014 Paris Motor Show . If not, expect it at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show . Until then, enjoy this spy video of Audi’s meanest hot hatch tearing up the Nürburgring .

What happens when you combine rally heritage, diesel racing technology and a small sports car ? If you ask Audi, it will tell you that sounds the perfect recipe for the new 2015 Audi TT 2.0 TDI Ultra.

Yes, I know it’s an obnoxiously long name, but there is a lot of important information in there. First off, the 2015 Audi TT portion lets us know that this is based on the latest and greatest version of Audi’s venerable coupe , the TT. The 2.0 TDI tells us it uses the latest Volkswagen family, common-rail, turbo-diesel engine. The Ultra is the most important part though. Audi has reserved that term for new versions of its cars that are ultra-efficient while still retaining the fun and excitement that the brand is known for.

Considering this little rocket will hit 60 mph in less than seven seconds, reach a top speed of 150 mph and still manage more than 50 mpg, I think Audi has succeeded in its mission. Is this new TT the Ultra choice for frugal fun? Read on to find out more and decide for yourself.

Continue reading to learn more about the 2015 Audi TT 2.0 TDI Ultra

If you missed this week’s episode of the TopSpeed Podcast , you might not be aware that I am currently reviewing the new Forza Horizon 2 game. I am not allowed to tell you much about it now, but if you want to get an idea of what the game is about, you can take a look at this video. This is the opening cutscene that takes place as soon as you turn the game on for the first time.

This video sets up the whole premise of the game. Forza isn’t a game about racing; it’s a game about the culture of the car. It celebrates the fun, the excitement, the friendship and the freedom that all comes with owning a car. It looks and feels a lot like my experience in the Gumball 3000 .

The video is a live-action piece, so don’t get too excited about how realistic it looks at first. I think the video is incredibly well-done and sets an excellent tone for the game as a whole. If you are interested in the game, you can buy it starting September 30th for both the Xbox One and the Xbox 360 . If you want a bit more information about the game, my review will go live Thursday September 25th.

While you wait for the review and the game to come out, why don’t you watch some of the other trailers and look over the official car list for the game.

Ringbrothers are responsible for some of the coolest resto-mod projects the tuning market has to offer. Be it the 1965 Ford Mustang Blizzard or the 1970 Chevrolet Camaro Diversion, Ringbrothers’ recent builds are arguably amongst the finest automotive works of art. Enormous horsepower, tastefully reshaped bodies and modern underpinnings make any classic muscle car with a Ringbrothers badge a prized collectible. Not surprising, these cars auction for big bucks. Last time we heard anything about the Wisconsin-based company, it brought the stunning 1971 De Tomaso Pantera ADRNLN to the 2013 SEMA Show . Nearly a year has passed, and Ringbrothers have yet another project on its hands.

This time around, the tuning shop is breathing new life into a 1966 Chevrolet Chevelle . The muscle car is being built for lubricant manufacturer Royal Purple, who plans to introduce four new products alongside the beefed-up Chevelle. It’s all scheduled to happen on November 4th, the first day of the 2014 SEMA Show in Las Vegas. Meanwhile, let’s have a look at what the Ringbrothers have in store for this 1966 Chevelle.

Click past the jump to read more about the 1966 Chevrolet Chevelle By Ringbrothers.

Although the third-generation Audi TT has yet to arrive in dealerships — European deliveries are set to begin in December 2014, while U.S. customers won’t get it for the 2016 model year — the Germans have already developed a special-edition coupe. Dubbed Nuvolari, the model that precedes the commercial launch of the new TT over the pond pays tribute to an important figure in Audi’s history: Tazio Nuvolari.

Nuvolari is known as one of the greatest drivers in motorsport history. And for good reason, as the Italian-born ace has no less than 52 major racing victories to his name. His prodigious career spanned between 1924 and 1939, with a brief return from 1946 until 1950. He has driven various Bugattis , Alfa Romeos , Maseratis and Ferraris before switching to Auto Union, one of the most successful race car manufacturers of the 1930s. At the time, Auto Union incorporated four brands including Audi, which explains why Ingolstadt takes so much pride in Nuvolari.

Of course, the Audi TT is not in any way related to Tazio, but the TT Nuvolari Special Edition is a great way to stir emotions among classic motorsport enthusiasts. Especially in Italy, where this coupe will be launched on September 19th, 2014.

Click past the jump to read more about the Audi TT Nuvolari Special Edition.

Source: Audi Italia

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