2014

2014

About 16 years ago Chevrolet launched the Niva, a mini SUV spawned from a joint venture between General Motors and Russian manufacturer AvtoVAZ. The Chevrolet Niva is based on the no-nonsense Lada Niva, which has been around since 1977 without major updates, using the same Russian-built underpinnings. But don’t let the dated appearance fool you, the Chevy Niva is a capable off-roader that can put many modern SUVs to shame.Nearly two decades after rebadging the Lada Niva, General Motors is finally upping the ante to deliver a more appealing second-generation SUV. For the moment only a concept, the new Chevrolet Niva is a massive departure from the current SUV, boasting an all-new design, a more rugged appearance, and revamped drivetrain.

The production model won’t break cover until 2016 and we likely won’t see it in the United States, but it’s definitely a vehicle worth a mention. If you like to spend your weekends taking on the roughest off-road paths in your SUV, then the Niva Concept is a rock climber you need to have a look at.

Click past the jump to read about the Chevrolet Niva SUV Concept

The Lexus GX sport utility has been around since 2003 when Lexus added the midsize SUV to its lineup. Slotted between the smaller crossover RX and the larger LX platforms, the GX offered plenty of room for seven passengers and loads of rugged abilities that the then up-and-coming crossover segment lacked. A heavy refresh came in 2010 and included the 4.6-liter V-8 to replace the older 4.7-liter, a revised interior, and some slight updating to the exterior. Now for 2014, Lexus has reworked the GX460, giving it the corporate-wide Spindle Grille up front with HID and LED lighting, a reshaped rear bumper, and a new range-topping trim level. Lexus has also subtracted some stuff, namely the pricing. In fact, the base GX460 is roughly $4,700 cheaper than 2013 model. That said, the GX460 isn’t a cheap SUV, thanks to a starting price still touching $50,000.

The GX460 does offer a lot for that scratch, however, and it makes a solid case for itself when considering its heritage and capabilities as a true SUV — and one that can still haul seven people. It’s able to tow a 6,500-pound trailer, engage low range and hit the trails, yet still look at home parked at the county club.

I recently spent a week getting to know the 2014 GX460 with all its quirks and strong suits. The week was spent doing mixed driving, split pretty evenly on highways and city streets. Hauling passengers and hill climbing even happened on a few occasions.

Click past the jump for the full report

The Lexus IS dates back to 1998, when it was introduced as an entry-level luxury car mainly in Japan and the United States. Initially launched as a four-door sedan and five-door wagon , the IS didn’t receive a two-door version until the second-generation model came in 2006. However, the Japanese only built a convertible , postponing the coupe for a few more years. The much-anticipated coupe has finally arrived for the 2015 model year, about 12 months after Lexus unveiled the third-generation IS. But unlike the latter, the coupe carries the RC F nameplate.

Although it borrows most of its styling from the IS sedan, the RC F features a more aggressive design, which is supposed to pay tribute to Lexus’ only supercar as of 2014, the LFA . The RC F, however, is not intended to compete with the likes of the Nissan GT-R , but rather take on the BMW M4 , the upcoming Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe and the Audi RS5 . Does it have what it takes to play with Germany’s main weapons for the sports coupe market? Read on to find out.

Updated 09/05/2014: Lexus announced full details and prices on the all-new RC F sports coupe which will be put on sale starting this fall. Prices will start from $63,325 including $925 destination charges.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Lexus RC F.

First teased back in January under a sheet of white cloth, Peugeot’s Beijing-bound concept vehicle has finally had the covers pulled off, revealing a dramatically-styled four-door coupe bearing the name "Exalt". So here it is, ladies and gentlemen: the Peugeot Exalt Concept.

Back when it was first teased, Peugeot boldly announced that this concept would serve as a follow up to the incredible Onyx Concept we saw at the 2012 Paris Auto Show . If anything, the Exalt has some pretty enormous shoes to fill, considering how bonkers the Onyx turned out to be with its insane 680-horsepower and 1,061-pound-feet output.

Peugeot is presenting the Exalt Concept with a Hybrid4 powertrain that combines with a gasoline engine and an electric motor, producing a combined output of around 340 horsepower. It’s not on the level of the Onyx, but really, there aren’t a lot of cars out there that are on the level of the Onyx.

Updated 09/04/2014: Peugeot will bring a new version of the Exalt concept to the 2014 Paris Auto Show. The new version will feature a new combination of colors: grey covering the majority of the exterior combined with a ‘Shark Skin’ rear end and ‘Newspaper Wood’ finish for the interior.

Click past the jump to read more about the Peugeot Exalt Concept.

The current Mitsubishi Outlander is on its last leg, which explains why Mitsubishi is giving it a fresh look before an entirely new model arrives in 2017. There’s still little information about this ‘new model’ but as it turns out, Mitsubishi is giving us a little preview at the Paris Motor Show with the debut of the Outlander PHEV Concept-S.

It’s unlikely that the successor will be called the Outlander because that would go against the premise of the new model taking the Outlander’s place in Mitsubishi’s lineup. Instead, Mitsubishi is promoting the Outlander PHEV Concept-S as a preview of the Outlander PHEV production model, complete with refined design aesthetics that combines the technology of the company’s twin-motor PHEV system with the spirit of a tried and true 4x4 SUV .

We’ll know more about the Outlander PHEV Concept-S at the Paris Motor Show in October. For now, indulge yourselves with these two teaser photos that Mitsubishi graciously sent to our inbox.

Click past the jump to read more about the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV Concept-S.

This is the new Infiniti Q70, just announced at the New York Auto Show , and at first blush you may not peg it as a new or refreshed model. To be honest, not much has changed since it was still called the M Sedan . There have been some visual changes to distinguish the new 2015 model from the current 2014 version, but by and large this is the same swoopy and fluidic sedan Infiniti has been selling since 2010.

That isn’t necessarily a bad thing though, as I think the Q70 is one of the best looking cars in the class.

The big news for the 2015 car is the addition of new technology and the announcement of a long wheelbase Q70L, specifically created to cater to the booming Chinese markets. Thankfully for those of us who enjoy the idea of extra rear legroom, the Q70L will be coming to the U.S. and other important Infiniti markets. This isn’t a China exclusive like so many long wheelbase models tend to be these days.

Updated 09/02/2014: Infiniti announced prices for the 2015 Q70 set to be put on sale later in September. Prices will range from $49,850 for the Q70 3.7 version and up to $67,050 for the Q70L 5.6 AWD version. Details after the jump.

To find out about all the changes coming to the freshly announced 2015 Q70 and Q70L hit the jump.

Toyota is turning up the fun factor with the heavily refreshed 2015 Camry, making it more exciting to drive, quieter inside, and more appealing to look at. A new interior includes better materials and even a handy wireless phone charger in the center console. This update comes only two years after the Camry’s last refresh, but in its quest to excite customers with a more upmarket sedan, Toyota is staying poised on its toes, jabbing at the competition.

Though much of the car’s underpinnings are not new, the car will have a fresh feel and character. Revised suspension components make the Camry a better handler while upgraded insulation keeps NVH levels to a minimum. Outside, every body panel except for the roof has been replaced in a effort to liven up the Camry’s demeanor.

While the Camry gets a new look, the greasy bits under the hood will carry over. The 2.5-liter inline four-cylinder and the 3.5-liter V-6 return, as does the six-speed automatic transmission. The hybrid trim carries over as well, utilizing the same Atkinson Cycle 2.5-liter I-4 mated to an E-CVT. All three engines are good performers and get impressive fuel economy numbers, though none of them will be setting lap time records or leaving burnout marks up Interstate on-ramps.

The Camry might not be setting records around a racetrack, but it sure has set plenty of sales records, leading the pack as the best selling sedan for the last 12 years. Toyota has sold nearly a million Camrys in the last two years alone. So is messing with success worth it? Click past the jump for all the details on the new 2015 Camry and decide for yourself.

Updated 09/02/2014: Toyota announced prices for the 2015 Camry set to be put on sale in late September. Prices will range from $22,970 for the LE trim and up to $29,980 for the Hybrid XLE version. Details after the jump.

Click past the jump for the low down on the 2015 Toyota Camry

The ATS-V is one of the more-anticipated Caddys since the completely redesigned CTS made itself seen at the 2013 New York Auto Show. It’s not too hard to predict what this M3/M4 fighter will bring to the party, but there is still a slight debate on what will power it. Essentially everyone agrees that the ATS-V will use the 3.6-liter, twin-boosted V-6 that we all fell in love with in the CTS Vsport, but there is some disagreement on how much power it will have. Some folks claim it sill carry the same 420 horses and 430 pound-feet of twist as the CTS Vsport , but some — myself included — think Caddy will boost its power slightly to better battle the M3 and M4 .

According to a report from the Los Angeles Times, we will not have to wait much longer to find out what it’s packing, as the sedan version will debut at the 2014 LA Auto Show. The LA show kicks off for the press on November 19, 2014,meaning we will see it in just a few month’s time.

Unfortunately, only the four-door model will show its face in the City of Angels, as the two-door M4 fighter will wait until 2015 to make its debut.

We’ll bring you all the details on the greasy bits once GM reveals it, so keep it here at TopSpeed.com.

Although it doesn’t benefit from the same recognition surrounding the Ferrari brand, Renault is a big name in the world of motorsports. The French have been involved in top-tier racing for decades and, more recently, their World Series championships have helped numerous talented youngsters grow into professional racers. For 2015, Renault and its Sport Technologies arm have developed yet another racing division, one that comes with its own, exclusive race car.

Make no mistake though, this new racer is not another beefed-up Megane RS . The French have taken things up a notch with a vehicle that’s faster than the entire bunch of race-ready Megane RS and Clio RS hatches. Making things even more interesting is the fact that Renault’s new race car features a unique design, highlighted by a coupe-like shape with a fixed wing on the rear.

Updated 8/27/2014: Renault has revealed the new Renaultsport R.S. 01

Click past the jump to read more about the Renault Sport Trophy.

Bugatti rocked the supercar world in 2005 by releasing the Veyron , its first production vehicle since the EB110, which was discontinued in 1995. Initially powered by a quad-turbocharged, 8.0-liter, W-16 engine that cranked out 987 horsepower, the Veyron was later updated and gifted with no less than 1,183 ponies and 1,106 pound-feet of torque. The French supercar is mostly know for being the fastest street-legal production car in the world, with a record sitting at 267.856 mph. Its roadster version, the Grand Sport Vitesse , holds the same benchmark for the world’s fastest open-top with a top speed of 254.04 mph. With only 15 units left to be built as of August 2014, Bugatti is sending the Veyron into the history books with yet another unique iteration, this time around created for an unnamed customer in Singapore.

Suggestively named "1 of 1," this bespoke Veyron was crafted using the same recipe that made Bugatti famous. However, there’s twist to the "1 of 1", which comes with more than a custom paintjob and a personalized interior. Not that these features are something to sneeze at, but it goes to show that Bugatti is capable of taking its customization program even further. Read on to find out why.

Click past the jump to read more about the Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse "1 of 1"


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