Ultra-luxury brands beware, another one of your comrades is falling down the shame spiral and building a - gasp - SUV!
Sure that’s a little dramatic, but so are all of the people that are scoffing at the fact that Bentley has now confirmed a new SUV scheduled to hit their lineup sometime in 2015. If everyone remembers correctly, these are the same people that were horrified that Porsche decided to build the Cayenne and look how well that turned out for them.
Now, with a 37-percent increase in sales in 2011 (to 7,003 vehicles sold), Bentley is looking to double this number by the time this new SUV comes out by making it "the world’s most luxurious 4x4" SUV and targeting growing SUV markets like the U.S. and China. The "luxurious" title will also match the price; rumors point to the starting price for this future SUV coming in at $271,000, making the $48,200 starting price of the Porsche Cayenne look like it belongs on a Kia Sportage.
So, what constitutes the jumbo price tag? Other than the supposedly tremendous amount of luxury built into the future SUV, rumors are swirling that a V-8 twin-turbocharged engine would be the standard powerplant and a W-12 engine is a possible option.
Bentley is taking a big step with its improving sales by giving an SUV a chance to flourish. Does the world need a strong competitor for the Porsche Cayenne? Probably not, but that doesn’t mean that high-end customers with deep pockets won’t be writing out checks for a chance to wallow in the luxurious nature promised by Bentley.
UPDATE 02/03/2013: Volkswagen Group has finally given the green light to the EXP 9 F super-luxury SUV unveiled at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show. The production version is internally known as the "Falcon" and is expected to be unveiled in the upcoming three years. The good news is that reports are pointing toward that the production version likely dropping the controversial design of the EXP 9F concept and will adopt a more conventional Bentley look. When put on sale in will be priced at about 200,000 euro - about $271,000 at the current exchange rates. Additionally, Bentley plans to sell about 5,000 units of its new SUV per year. (Automotive News)
When the DB9 hit the market in the 2005 model year, we loved what Aston had done with it, as it took its 1950s and 60s predecessors and just modernized it — a brilliant concept. Well, the DB9 went through a few minor changes in the 200s, namely a boost from a 449-horsepower, 412 pound-feet V-12 to a 470-horsepower, 443 pound-feet V-12 engine. Other than that, the DB9 has been basically a carryover and is well overdue for a mild upgrade, which we have been speculating about for a while now.
Finally, Aston Martin has given into our prying selves and has released some information on the upcoming revisions to the DB9 for the 2013 model year. Keep in mind here, Aston Martin, like many sports car and supercar builders, are not keen on changing things around just for the sake of change. So we do not expect to see any massive styling changes, only small tweaks here and there to make it sleeker and more stylish, so it remains up to date.
Aston Martin Chief Executive Officer Dr. Ulrich Bez certainly feels good about the revised DB9, as he said: "I am very excited to be unveiling the new DB9 now. My team here at Gaydon has been working hard for many months to improve and update key aspects of this superb Sports GT – the mainstay of our sports car range – and I believe the results to be exceptional."
Well, with all due respect to Dr. Bez, and he deserves plenty, we will have to take a look at this revision and just see how “exceptional” it really is. We have certainly seen some redesign bombs in the last few years, so let’s hope that the DB9 is not one of them.
Click past the jump to read our full review on this all-new DB9 and see if it lives up to the level that Dr. Bez is telling us it does. Full story
Mitsubishi has been out of the luxury sedan market for what seems like ages, but in reality it’s just about a decade. Thanks to the Japanese automaker’s relationship with Nissan, Mitsu is diving back into the luxury sedan market, as it will use the Infiniti M35hL LWB to make a luxury sedan of its own.
According to reports, the exterior of the Mitsubishi variant of the M35hL LWB will remain very similar to the Infiniti model it is based upon. The key differences between the Infiniti model and the Mitsubishi model will be the elimination of the Infiniti waterfall grille, swapping out the front bumper for a slightly revised one and replacing the Infiniti badges for Mitsubishi ones, of course.
Being based on the M35hL LWB, this new Mitsubishi Dignity will boast the same hybrid 3.5-liter V-6 drivetrain that the Infiniti has, which boasts an impressive 359 horsepower, but a slightly disappointing 199 pound-feet of torque. The base price tag of ¥8,400,000 ($105,500) is also quite the deterrent, but 30-plus mpg on the highway is definitely a draw.
In addition, if you are in the U.S. and want to snag up this upcoming model, you can pretty much forget about it. Mitsubishi is only offering this model in Japan. We would suspect that if this model performs well in the Japanese market, Mitsubishi would certainly release it in the U.S.
For now, the details on the Dignity are still a little scarce, so this is all we have to pass on for now. As more information becomes available we will pass it on.
The Marussia B2 is the company’s second supercar and was built as an evolution of the B1 - Russia’s first supercar. This second coming continues the same impressive technologies of the B1, but is distinguished by a more powerful face and a unique interior. Marussia only created 500 units of this impressive model, with prices starting from $130,460.
The Marussia B2 will be offered with either a 2.8 liter V6 turbo engine or a naturally aspirated 3.5 liter V6 engine with power ranging from 300 to 420 HP. With these engines, the supercar can sprint from 0 to 60 mph in just 3.2 seconds and continue on to a top speed nearing 190mph.
"The B2 is an overt expression of our capabilities and ambition. Using the same exceptionally light and strong chassis structure combined with Marussia-Cosworth power units, the B2 allows our designers and our customers to explore their wilder side."
UPDATE 05/08/2012: Just 500 units were planned from the start and less than 12 months after hitting the market, all 500 units have already been ordered and in order to fill all of these orders, Marussia and Valmet (the firm producing the B2) have decided to shift production from Marussia’s headquarters in Moscow to Valmet in Finland, which also produces the Fisker Karma.
With the B2 having received such a warm reception, it’s likely that Marussia is currently developing its successor, possibly named the ‘B3’.
Hit the jump to read more about the 2012 Marussia B2. Full story
Mercedes has been hot to trot lately with an onslaught of different models just spilling out of the German manufacturer. The SLS AMG is fresh and so is the SLK Roadster. And, as a next logical step, the SL-Class has also entered a whole new generation. The new SL continues the tradition started by its predecessor, but offers considerably more comfort and athletic character, setting new standards in the luxury roadster class.
The US market will only get the SL550 version - a model powered by a 4663 cc V8 engine that delivers a total of 429 HP and 516 lb-ft of torque. The engine will be combined with ECO stop/start function as standard equipment and a 7-Speed Driver-Adaptive automatic transmission. The European market will benefit from that model, as well as an SL350 version that will use a V6 engine with an output of 306 HP.
UPDATE 04/17/2012: Mercedes USA has released a new walk around video of the SL-Class Roadster. Be sure to give it a watch because the SL’s product manager, Dave Larsen, will be the one taking you through everything you need to know about the new member of Mercedes’ legendary SL line. Check out the video after the jump! Full story
After displaying one image of the new generation G-Class secretly or accidentally in the official picture gallery of the new GLK-Class, Mercedes has finally decided to drop the official details on the new G-Class. The car has been heavily modified and includes a new interior with exquisite materials, a completely redesigned instrument cluster and center console, and some minor changes for the exterior.
The line-up now includes a new G63 AMG powered by an eight-cylinder biturbo engine combined with an ECO start/stop system and a new G65 AMG model featuring a new V12 biturbo engine.
"Our G-Class has been a force to be reckoned with for the last 33 years. In its latest evolutionary stage, it offers state-of-the-art, powerful engines, a further improved range of luxurious appointments and the very latest safety features, as well, of course, as its now legendary off-road capabilities. At the same time the design remains true to its down-to-earth, unmistakable style," said Dr Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars.
Hit the jump to read more about the new generation Mercedes G-Class. Full story
The Nissan GT-R just gets better and better every year and 2013 will be no exception. The original version launched back at the 2007 Tokyo Motor Show delivered a total of 473 HP; the most recent model - Model Year 2012 - went up to an impressive 530 HP; and things aren’t slowing down for the Japanese automaker. The new version (2012 in Japan, 2013 in USA) has made its official debut at the 2011 Tokyo Motor Show, and Nissan has delivered the kind of performance the GTR is known for, but not what we expected.
The bad news from this reveal is that, despite previous rumors, the 2013 GT-R will not deliver 560 HP. Its output has been increased indeed, but "only" to 542 HP - an increase of 12 HP over the current model. The most impressive part however is that the 466 lb-ft of torque will be delivered from 3,200 rpm all the way up to 5,800 rpm.
For 2013, the GT-R will also offer a new "For Track Pack" special edition that adds new high-friction seats, a stiffer suspension, and lighter wheels.
UPDATE 01/20/2012: Nissan has just announced prices for the 2013 Nissan GT-R, which is on sale now at Nissan dealers nationwide. The model will be offered in two versions: the GT-R Premium at a starting price of $96,820 and the GT-R Black Edition priced at $106,320. An optional Special Paint-Super Silver will add another $3,000 to the car’s price.
UPDATE 06/20/2012: Nissan has unveiled a pretty cool video featuring the 2013 GT-R taking some laps on a race track at the Monticello Motor Club, North America’s Premier Automotive Resort and Private Race Track, located just 90 miles from Manhattan.
Hit the jump to read more about the 2012/2013 Nissan GT-R. Full story
Mach7 Motorsports waltzed into the 2011 Detroit Auto Show with a killer new machine that was poised to further represent America in the supercar war of the worlds. Turns out, that was just a prototype and they’re back in Detroit again to reveal their polished Falcon F7. The new Falcon F7 supercar will go on sale at a starting price of $195,000, with some versions heading up to $250,000. Mach7 Motorsports hopes to produce fifteen cars in the first year, twenty- five plus cars in the second year, and then consistently produce one hundred or more cars in each of the following years.
The Falcon F7 will feature an all carbon-fiber body, an aluminum/carbon fiber monocoque chassis, a billet suspension, an extreme power to weight ratio, and hand-crafted interiors. It is powered by a 7.0 liter V8 engine that delivers a total of 620 HP at 6600 rpm and 585 lb-ft of torque at 5400 rpm. With the extra power, the Falcon F7 will sprint from 0 to 60 mph in 3.3-3.6 seconds and will hit a top speed somewhere between 190 to 200 mph.
UPDATE 01/30/12: The Falcon F7 is one of the most intriguing super cars to come out of American soil in recent history. Check out this newly-released video of the supercar undergoing its first track testing session. It’s a good watch!
Hit the jump to read more the 2012 Mach7 Motorsports Falcon F7. Full story
Now that Porsche has unveiled the new generation 911/991 at the Frankfurt Motor Show, the company has started to test the convertible version. Obviously, the two models will more or less be the same, but the Cabriolet will feature a canvas soft-top - and not the folding hardtop previously suggested.
Like with the coupe version, the 911/991 Cabriolet will receive an updated exterior featuring an even more muscular stance, a new headlamp design, remodeled exterior mirrors, and new wheels. The interior will be more driver-focused and will offer better technology.
As for the engine line-up, the standard Carrera will get a 3.4 liter direct-injected flat-six engine that will deliver a total of 350 HP, while the S version will feature a 3.8-liter flat-six with direct injection engine delivering a raised output of 400 HP. Performance times would obviously suffer just a tad with the added weight of the soft top, but shouldn’t be too far off of the 0-62 mph time of 4.6 seconds for the Carrera and 4.3 seconds for the Carrera S.
UPDATE 01/09/2012: The new 911 Cabriolet made its North American debut at the Detroit Auto Show allowing Porsche to unveil a new promo video for the sports convertible. Enjoy! Full story
Well, that was fast. Just a couple of days after releasing a teaser image for their new flagship sports car, Ginetta has gone balls to the wall with a full list of details on their G60. The new Ginetta G60 will be limited to only 50 units and will be priced at £68,000 or about $105,000 at the current exchange rates.
Being the first model produced since Ginetta took over Farbio Sports, the G60 benefits from this union with a heavily reworked version of the carbon fiber-tubbed Farbio GTS. According to the official press release, Ginetta states that the G60’s tub is now stiffer and easier to manufacture. Other additions to the Ginetta process are arelaigned driver position, stripped out weight, and new body panels.
The Ginetta G60 is powered by a Ford Mustang 3.7-liter V6 engine that delivers a total of 310 HP. This power will sprint the car from 0 to 60 mph in just 4 seconds and up to a top speed of 165 mph.
Hit the jump to read more about the new Ginetta G60. Full story