Car News

Thanks to my job, I have had the rare opportunity to drive several high-powered and expensive cars. From Porsche to Lamborghini with a few GT-Rs in between, I have spent a lot of time going fast. When I heard Gotham Dream Cars was coming to town, I didn’t really think too much about it. A few quick laps in a Lamborghini around an autocross course seemed to pale in comparison to some of the things I had done. Then I started to hear some of the other car fiends in the area talking about how exciting this seemed.

Even people I know of who aren’t that excited about cars were interested in this chance to experience the power and speed of a supercar. It makes sense though. Supercars are the most useless creation in the world of the automobile, but they still draw certain emotions from us.

It doesn’t matter how much you like cars or not, when a supercar rolls by, you likely pay attention. Maybe it’s the speed, the looks or the noise, but the majority of the world is simply drawn to them.

I decided that I would test this theory and I decided to head to the event. Aside from just experiencing what Gotham has to offer, I brought my wife. Thanks to me she knows about cars, but aside from the fact that she thinks Porsche 911s are pretty, she has little to no interest in anything to do with supercars.

Would she still enjoy this experience? Would she revel in the noise and the horsepower that all petrol heads crave? What about the other guests of the event? Are they gasoline-drinking speed junkies or just regular people drawn in by the allure of Italian horsepower?

Read on to find out more about my day with Gotham Dream Cars

With less than a year left until production begins around the world, the second-generation BMW X1 is slowly revealing itself as testing continues on public roads. Caught roaming the streets somewhere in Germany by our skilled spy photographers, the 2016 X1 showcases its production headlamps for the very first time.

Although most of the crossover’s front end is still camouflaged, the new headlight configuration suggests the upcoming X1 borrows its front fascia from the bigger BMW SUVs . We expect the new headlamps to connect with the chrome surrounds of the reshaped, taller kidney grille, meaning the X1 will carry a lot of character up front, albeit it will be less muscular when compared to the X5 .

Nonetheless, the next-gen X1 is just an evolution of the current model, so don’t expect any overwhelming changes inside and out except for the introduction of the front-wheel-drive, UKL architecture that underpins the new Mini Cooper and the upcoming BMW 1 Series Active Tourer.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2016 BMW X1.

You can now rest easy, Subaru BRZ fans. The Japanese sports car will live to see a second generation version after all. It wasn’t looking too good, especially after a recent conversation between Toyota chief engineer Tetsuya Tada and Drive indicated that the second-generation 86 could be a BMW -Toyota collaboration, leaving Subaru out in the cold .

But thank your lucky stars for Fuji Heavy Industries president Yasuyuki Yoshinaga. The head honcho of Subaru’s parent company has told Automotive News that the BRZ will live on, effectively debunking the previous report of the BRZ’s possible demise.

Yoshinaga told Automotive News that Toyota and Fuji Heavy Industries will be working on a successor to the current-generation BRZ . The Fuji chief was responding to the aforementioned Drive report that quoted Toyota chief engineer Tetsuya Tada.

"If I were to be told that, I’d pass out," Yoshinaga told Automotive News. "It’s not going to be just one generation."

Cue the collective sighs of relief from fans of the BRZ.

So it looks like Subaru will still be involved in the next generation model of the BRZ.

Click past the jump to read more about the Subaru BRZ

By now, we all know how awesome the Ferrari LaFerrari is. It’s the one road car that features the very best of Ferrari technology, something even the F12berlinetta and the 458 Italia can’t boast of. Recently, Motor Trend’s Ignition web series had a chance to get up close and personal with the LaFerrari. Quite frankly, we’re a little jealous of Ignition host Carlos Lago. Not everyone gets to drive the LaFerrari around even for just a few laps.

Lago not only secured a morning’s worth of laps around Ferrari’s famed test track in Fiorano, he also had some time to take in the beautiful scenery around the track later on that day. That ear-to-ear grin on his face is a pretty good indication that he had a ball. We’d feel the same way, too.

The Ignition host was clearly blown away by his time with the LaFerrari, as was every other person who was allowed some time to drive the hybrid supercar . The LaFerrari is, after all, an incredible piece of Ferrari engineering, created with the simple task of showcasing the very best in technological advancements the company has accomplished.

The only thing missing is a Topspeed review of the LaFerrari. Cross your fingers that we get our chance soon.

It’s been six years since Jaguar and Land Rover left the Ford ownership umbrella, but the British automakers are still using Ford-derived engines they inherited back in the late 1990s. That’s about to change though, as the Brits are set to introduce a new family of efficient powerplants. Dubbed Ingenium, these new engines promise to deliver a compelling combination of power, efficiency, and low CO2 emissions in many shapes and sizes.

Built in-house at the company’s new engine facility in Wolverhampton, England, the first version of the modular unit family is set to debut in the upcoming Jaguar XE and find its way into the Land Rover Discovery a few months after that. The Ingenium family will include both gasoline and diesel variants with turbochargers attached to them. As with all modular engines, JLR’s new powerplants will share many internals and calibration strategies, enabling the company to raise quality and simplify manufacturing.

Looks like Jaguar Land Rover is finally growing up!

Click past the jump to read more about Jaguar’s new Ingenium Engine Family.

It appears Audi is developing a wireless charging system for its next-generation R8 and possible future models. The news comes as Tobias Meyer of Audi’s product marketing department mentioned the experimentation with inductive wireless charging to CarAdvice at the debut of the gasoline-electric A3 e-tron .

Apparently the German automaker is in the very early stages of product development with such a system. “It’s brand new, and wireless charging is an expensive technology,” Meyer says. “We are discussing the topic right now….it’s under investigation.”

The wireless charging system would work by parking a compatible car atop a charging plate. That plate would then communicate and then charge the car via a matching charging plate installed on the car’s underbelly, eliminating the need of a plug.

At this point, the possibility of wireless charging is still a distant goal, but one that potentially may come on the next-generation Audi R8 e-tron set to enter its second generation in 2015. If Audi brings wireless car charging to market, it would be an industry first. However, Audi may have some competition, as BMW and Daimler have announced plans to jointly develop a wireless charging system.

Click past the jump to read more about the next Audi R8.

Source: CarAdvice

It’s been only a week since we’ve seen the first LaFerrari crash , and the first fire-related incident involving the company’s brand-new supercar have surfaced the Interwebz via Instagram. The details are pretty thin, but it appears the incident occurred during the Trento-Bondone rally, which was attended by a large number of Ferrari s, including the LaFerrari depicted above.

According to various reports, the red-painted LaFerrari started smoking while roaring up the hillclimb event, but details as to what might have happened under the hood are nonexistent. All we know is the photo taken right after the event suggests the LaFerrari’s rear end suffered some fire damage before an extinguisher jumped in to cool things down. Granted, the damage is limited to the slight burns seen on diffuser and the powder stains covering most of the rear fascia, but we can’t help wonder whether or not the LaFerrari is facing some fire-related issues of its own.

Click past the jump to read more about Ferrari’s fire problems.

Source: Instagram

The hype over the 2015 Challenger SRT Hellcat ’s 707 horsepower hasn’t died off since Dodge proclaimed that information on its 100th birthday July 1, 2014. Now the fun begins. First up: gratuitous burnouts. Yep, what would an American muscle car be without the ability to lay down a smoke screen thick enough for a war zone? Well, it seems the SRT Hellcat has that ability and then some, as this video proves.

Put on by the guys at Car & Driver, the two Challengers challenge each other to the best burnout. This sort of hooning comes easy with 650 pound-feet of torque getting both tires loose and a monstrous 707 horsepower to keep them spinning. You almost feel sorry for the Pirelli P Zero Nero tires. Almost.

What’s more, those 707 horses not only make the SRT Hellcat more powerful than Dodge’s own SRT Viper , but more powerful than any other muscle car in history. It’s all thanks to a supercharged, 6.2-liter, HEMI V-8 with beefed up internals and a 14,600-rpm redline on the Lyshoim-style supercharger. The HEMI engine is mated to a six-speed TF-6060 manual unit from Tremec.

We look forward to seeing some actual numbers from the drag strip, including both 0-to-60-mph and quarter-mile times. Until then, we’ll know the Challenger SRT Hellcat is one awesome burnout machine.

It was a day early, but we hope you enjoyed this week’s episode of the TopSpeed Podcast . There was the usual bit of silliness, a fair amount of arguing and we even managed to talk about some car stuff.

As always, we want to say a very special thanks to our live viewers.

For Weekly Wheels, I discuss my time with the Prius V , Mark talks to us about what he thinks I got wrong with the Lexus RX 450h , and Justin tells us how much he liked the new 2015 Honda Fit .

For news stories we cover the new fourth-generation Miata engine and reveal date, talk about Mercedes bringing back the Maybach name, and we cover our exclusive news of Kahn Design moving into car production.

After that we spend some time with Mark talking about the 100-year anniversary of Dodge , how they are celebrating with a 707 horsepower Challenger, and end with a look at the future of the rock-crawling Jeep Wrangler . To finish the news, I had a few things to say about a faster Alfa Romeo 4C and looked at how you can buy a cheap Porsche Boxster or Cayman next summer.

For our viewer-question segment we talk about cars that can do epic burnouts, cars we want to see do epic burnouts and then we talk about racing video games. With the video games we take a second to look at our all-time favorite games and touch on the games that are coming out in the next six to nine months. There is even a sneak peak at a new piece I am working on.

To end the show we do our traditional Own, Drive, Burn and it was easily the hardest one we had yet. We have to choose between a legendary classic Porsche , Ferrari and Lamborghini .

If you liked the show, let us know in the comments. If you didn’t like the show, let us know that too. Apart from the comments, you can reach us on Twitter @TopSpeedPodcast or by email, Podcast@TopSpeed.com. Don’t forget, if you like the show but can’t always make it the to site to watch or listen, you can subscribe to our cast on iTunes.

Stay safe this weekend, and we will see you guys next week.

To say simply that Jaguar has been making some cool cars over the last few years would be a monumental disservice to the brand and the work it’s doing. From the complete line of R-S models, the introduction of the F-Type roadster and coupe, and the heritage classics like the Lightweight E-Type project. Of all the interesting and cool things that Jaguar has made, the special Project 7 concept car was easily my favorite. Now Jaguar has decided to make a production version, and it has 567 horsepower. If you aren’t caught up on your Jaguar history, that makes this the most powerful production car to ever come from the team in Coventry.

XCAR was lucky enough to catch some time with Ian Callum, the head of design at Jaguar and the man who penned Project 7, as well as John Edwards, the Managing Director of the Special Operations division at Goodwood . They get a thorough look at the car and get some great insight into how and why the car was created along with some info on why this car is so special. Some of the highlights include a weight cut of nearly 200 pounds, a limited production run of only 250 units, and deliveries are set to start next spring.

If you are one of the lucky few who gets to claim the keys to a Project 7, please drive it. I really want to see one of these in motion on the road one day.


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