compact cars

compact cars

  Compact car is a largely North American term denoting an automobile smaller than a midsize car, but larger than a subcompact car. Compact cars usually have wheelbases between 2.54 metres (100 inches) and 2.67 metres (105 inches). Another definition specifies between 100 ft³ (2800 L) and 109 ft³ (3000 L) of interior volume.

Toyota is coming back to this year’s SEMA Auto Show , and it’s bringing along the Dream Build Challenge for an encore run.

Last year, the competition was won by NASCAR racer Kyle Busch , who took home the title for his work on the 2013 Toyota Camry , or as he later on christened it: the Rowdy Camry .

This year, another NASCAR driver, Parker Kligerman, will team up with Kyle Busch Racing to be one of the four participants in the complete custom build of four unique Toyotas. In the case of Kligerman, he has the task of using another Camry and create a rally -inspired version that has been dubbed the "CamRally".

Meanwhile, freestyle skier Simon Dumont will be teaming up with Oakley to work on a Toyota 4Runner , or as it will be built and called, the "Ultimate Dream Ski 4Runner".

Representing the world of Supercross are a pair of the sports biggest stars, Justin Brayton and Josh Grant, both of whom will collaborate with Joe Gibbs Racing Motocross to build the "Let’s Go Moto Tundra " pickup.

And finally, BMX rider Drew Bezanzon has the Toyota Corolla all to himself. He’ll still get help from Skullcandy to build what we can only imagine to be an audio box on wheels, thus its aptly named handle, the "Corolla Crusher".

All four entries will be in attendance at the SEMA Auto Show where just like last year, the fans get to decide which build stands out ahead of the pack.

Click past the jump to read about last year’s winning build, the 2013 Toyota Camry Rowdy Edition by Kyle Busch

Mini Cooper

We’ve seen plenty of spy shots of the 2014 Mini Cooper , and we’ve even seen leaked imaged. Heck, we even had Mini officials complaining that leaked images didn’t represent the newly redesigned models properly. Well, Mini is now starting the flow of next-gen information by releasing a very in-depth presser that outlines the chassis, engine and safety updates to the soon-to-be-revealed models.

This press release, which dropped late last night, confirms that the new Mini models will feature three- and four-cylinder powerplants, ranging from a petite 1.5-liter, three-banger up to a 2.0-liter, four-pot that nearly reaches the 200-horsepower mark. Along with these new engines will comes an all-new driveline that will help deliver increase fuel economy across the range.

The chassis will also get some nice refinements that will offer up precision handling and a comfortable ride all at the same time.

Click past the jump to read more about the next-gen Mini technology

In the short time that it’s been around, the new Mercedes A-Class has turned into one of Mercedes ’ more popular models, so much so that a number of racing teams have begun the process of developing race cars based on the compact hatchback .

One of these teams is Ciceley Racing and for the 2014 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship, it’s going to field a heavily tuned A-Class that was designed and developed to be a true race car.

The exterior of the A-Class received a load of modifications, both in aesthetic and aerodynamic form. The predominantly blue color of the body is treated to a wide range of decals from sponsors and partners alike. Likewise, a slew of new components were added to the car to make it more performance ready when the BTCC season kicks off.

A new carbon-fiber front lip spoiler is clearly visible, as is a ventilated hood that allows for faster cooling of the engine and extended side skirts to keep the race car as close to the ground as it can be, even at high speeds. The rear wing at the back also helps in improving downforce, while the presence of a new rear diffuser and a four-tailpipe sports exhaust system should give the A-Class smoother performance credentials.

Ciceley Racing’s Mercedes A-Class BTCC Race Car is scheduled to begin competition in March of next year in time for the opening of the 2014 BTCC season. Always good to know that racing teams are preparing this early for next year’s models; that’s a sign of a competitive team willing to put the time and effort to field a competitive car.

As expected, Ciceley Racing didn’t release any of the A-Class racer’s performance specs.

Click past the jump to read more about the Mercedes-Benz A-Class that this racer is based on.

Posted on by Simona  

Revealed at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show , the second-generation Mercedes B-Class is already about to receive its first update.

Our spy photographers caught this updated B-Class testing on public. As you can see, the prototype in these pictures is wearing camouflage on just the parts that Mercedes is updating.

Of course you shouldn’t expect anything big from the revised B-Class , as we only expect Mercedes to refresh it just enough to allow it to remain in dealer showrooms for a few more years.

These updates will include revised front and rear bumpers, and revised headlights and grille.

Under the hood, the updated B-Class will most likely keep the current engine lineup, which includes gasoline and diesel engines. Power ranges from 109 to 156 horsepower through the B-Class’ engine line. However, we expect to see some updates on the output and emission levels.
We expect to see the revised B-Class in early 2014.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class.

Posted on by Simona  
Caterham AeroSeven Concept

During the unveiling of the 2013 AeroSeven Concept Car , Tony Fernandes, Caterham Group Co-Chairman, also revealed some of the company’s future plans. We must admit that they sound quite promising, and it looks like the Caterham name will undergo a huge transformation in the near future. .

The company plans a big expansion, especially into the Asian market, and Fernandes confirmed there will be a new crossover and small city cars, alongside a range of sports cars to meet a diverse global market.

The first step in this direction was made with the AeroSeven — a concept car that previews the company’s new sports car set to be developed in cooperation with Renault Alpine. The production version will arrive in the autumn of 2014.

However, when asked when the new models will be launched, Fernandes added: "We’re focused on developing the right products; with the right retail experience, in the right markets, at the right time. The sales will then come." Well, that is rather cryptic; so, we guess we’ll just have to wait...

Click past the jump to read more about the new Caterham AeroSeven Concept.

The Hyundai Veloster represents the Korean automaker’s move to become a more diverse brand. Known for building a whole lineup of impressive models, ranging from entry-level cars to mid-size vehicle, all the to SUVs and luxury cars, Hyundai had a whole lot of markets covered.

The sports hatch market, though, wasn’t in the company’s radar until it released the Veloster.

And when the Veloster did arrive, it ushered in a new era of affordable Hyundais with incredibly sporty looks and well-placed performance capabilities to back it up. It’s numbers aren’t as high as a lot of people would’ve liked, but overall, the Veloster offered customers a cool and new way to enjoy a car with sports car looks that won’t empty their wallets in the process.

Hyundai answered those performance questions with the release of the Veloster Turbo , but the standard Veloster still has some appeal to it, even if it seemed like the top-line trim rendered everything below it redundant.

Click past the jump to read about the 2013 Hyundai Veloster

Compact cars usually don’t generate the same kind of buzz compared to supercars .

Tell that to the 2014 Ford Focus , which seems to be getting its fair share of attention, thanks to a balanced offering that crosses off a whole lot boxes from people’s checklists.

The new Focus isn’t entirely new, although Ford did put some new additions to keep the model as fresh as can be in the face of competitors rolling out new models of their own (hello there, Toyota Corolla !).

Ultimately, Ford’s objective with the 2014 Focus appears to be simple. Keep it true to its nature and build on all the things people enjoy about it.

It’s still styled impressively; it’s got impressive efficiency numbers; and it’s technologically proficient. All of these give the Focus even more depth, character and appeal to the consumer. These are the kind of things that translate to sales.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Ford Focus

Posted on by Simona  
BMW X1

Rumors have been circulating about a the next-gen BMW X1 for quite some time now, but this is the first time we’ve caught one in the wild. Internally called F48, the next X1 was spied while being transported between two different test facilities in Germany on the back of a flatbed tow truck, so we still have yet to catch one in action.

The 2015 X1 will be built on BMW’s new front-wheel-drive platform, which is known as the UKL (German for "Unter Klasse" or "entry level"), and that same platform will see use on the new Mini and the upcoming 1 Series GT.

The new front-wheel-drive platform gives BMW the ability to offer more space in the upcoming X1,and reduce production cost. Though the X1 will come standard with front-wheel drive, BMW will offer all-wheel drive with the X1’s upper-level engines.

Expect the new BMW X1 to arrive late in 2015.

Click past the jump to get a better look at there BMW X1 spy shots.

Posted on by Simona  
Honda Civic Type R

The current Honda CR-Z was unveiled at the 2008 Detroit North American International Auto Show, and experts have greeted it with lukewarm approval. New rumors suggest that with the next-generation CR-Z, Honda plans to base it on the 2015 Civic Type R , which recently lapped Nurburgring in less than eight minutes.

This move could transform the CR-Z into a real competitor for models like the Toyota GT 86 and Subaru BRZ , just as Honda always wanted. According to a Honda insider, the next CR-Z will deliver "driving experience, good power, sporty look, low price and sizable global sales figures."

The model will be built on a a shorter version of the new Type R platform and will feature a design similar to the current CR-Z. Under the hood, it will likely get a a turbocharged 1.5-liter, direct-injection four-cylinder gasoline engine mated to an updated version of the current CR-Z’s hybrid system. This system could help it deliver somewhere in the 221-horsepower area.

Rumors suggest that the new CR-Z will arrive on the market one year after the new-generation Civic, so expect it sometime in 2016.

Click past the jump to read more about the next Honda Civic Type R.

Source: Car Sales
Posted on by Simona  

Last time Chris Harris tested the Ford Fiesta ST he decided to do so in a rather strange way...

In the latest episode of Drive, Harris decided to find a more suitable test for the ST, as he put it against a Renault Clio RS 200 . We’ll need to be completely honest with you from the start, and let you know that this was no ordinary ST. This one is actually carrying with it a dealer-installed Mountune performance kit.

For those that aren’t familiar with the Ford Fiesta ST Mountune, we’ll remind you that this petite hatchback delivers 215 PS (212 horsepower) at at 6,000 rpm and 320 Nm (236) pound-feet of torque at 3,000 rpm. This puts the Clio at a 12-horsepower and 59-pound-feet disadvantage, but it has a paddle-operated gearbox to the Fiesta’s manual, making it easier to launch and shift.

Check out the video to see Harris pushing the two little hatches to almost to their breaking point, and find out if the paddle-shift auto helps out enough to overcome the huge power gap.


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