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 ftÂ³ (2800 L) and 109 ftÂ³ (3000 L) of interior volume.
The Audi A1 is all set to get a much needed facelift for the 2014 model year, but that’s not all that will be happening with Audi at that time. According to a report from “sources within Audi,” the A1 facelift will also bring about the introduction of the S1 – a higher-performance variant of the compact hatch.
We expect this hot hatchback to come equipped with a 2.0-liter TSFI engine that is tuned to pump out 220 to 240 horsepower, but nothing is confirmed just yet. We also assume that the S1 will feature Audi’s famed quattro all-wheel-drive system. This would likely translate out to a 5-second run to 60 mph and a top speed nearing 155 mph.
Now it’s time for the bad news. Also reported by these supposed “insiders” is that the Audi RS1 is officially off the table. This 300-plus-horsepower hatchback is said to be a no go because officials think it would be too expensive to market in the compact hatchback realm. We can certainly see where this could be an issue with the Focus ST dominating the class at just over $20K, but there is definitely a market for a $30K-plus high-performance hatchback in our opinion. We’re willing to bet that the S1 will test the market and if it performs well, the RS1 will launch.
With so many Mercedes-Benz AMG models floating around the market at the moment, it would have been easy to forget that the German giant doesn’t have a direct competitor to the Audi RS3 hatch or the BMW M135i. That’s where the new A45 AMG is said to step in.
Pinned to be the most affordable AMG on sale, the A45 AMG aims to not only compete with the aforementioned BMW and Audi models, but to completely annihilate them with its performance capabilities.
The A45 AMG has actually been in development for the better part of two years, and, after spying it in many times, the first official details on the car are finally here. It is the first high-performance vehicle Mercedes has ever offered in the compact class, and according to officials it will target the age range from 30 to mid-40.
The new Mercedes A45 AMG will be making its world debut at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show and will be put on sale in April.
UPDATE 05/21/2013: Mercedes unveiled a new commercial for the new A45 AMG. Called "Apparition" the new ad is featuring features Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg riding the car. the ad is oddly similar to Toyota’s RAV4 ad, sans the high-performance hatchback, of course. Enjoy!
Japanese automaker Mitsubishi has never been one to look for the spotlight. Even if they have concepts in these auto shows, they’re more than content to show their latest offerings without any hints of trying to upstage anybody else.
At the 2013 Geneva Motor Show, Mitsu will be bringing two concepts that will probably get little attention but are no less important, as it pertains to the future of their vehicular lineup. One of these concepts is called the CA-MiEV Concept.
Described as a next-generation EV that follows in the reins of the MiEV, the CA-MiEV will feature a slew of new technologies to go with what looks like an aggressively designed exterior that’s highlighted by a pretty striking set of LED headlights. We don’t know about you, but we’re very interested to see this concept with the lights on.
As far as the technologies are concerned, Mitsubishi is indicating that the CA-MiEV will carry a lot of them, including high-energy-density batteries and high-efficiency EV systems (motor, inverter, regenerative braking and wireless charging system) with both systems, enabling the concept to carry a cruising range of 300 km.
We’re looking forward to seeing what Mitsubishi has with the CA-MiEV. At the very least, this could be an interesting concept that brings attention back to the Japanese automaker.
It’s been a while since we last heard something about the smart fortwo and forfour, but today our spy photographers have caught the two prototypes during winter testing in Sweden. The forfour will be pretty much identical to the fortwo, as it will be just a four-door version of the latter.
Both the forfour and fortwo will be built on a new platform that will also be used for the next-generation Twingo, and a future model from Nissan. This new platform has been developed as a recent cooperation between Daimler, Renault and Nissan. Despite rumors suggesting that Renault has dropped interest in this co-operation, the two mules were seen with French plates and a Dacia Duster with French plates was used as a security vehicle to protect the two prototypes. Those facts could mean nothing, but they could also mean that Renault has regained interest.
Both the fortwo and forfour were heavily camouflaged, but rumors suggested that the production version will take inspiration from the Smart forstars concept revealed at the 2012 Paris Car Show.
Expect the new-generation Fortwo to hit the market in 2014, with the forfour coming in 2015.
French automaker, Renault, is headed to the 2013 Geneva Motor Show with a bevy of new models that, moving forward, will most likely head to production status.
One of them is Scenic XMOD, a B-segment MPV that provides crossover-type looks designed to attract a younger and hipper market, and who are we to go against the Renault’s strategy?
There seems to be growing clamoring for MPVs these days, although with the caveat that they’re not really some of the most fanciful vehicles available in the market. Still, there’s strong interest in the type and Renault wants to take advantage of it by offering a vehicle that passes the eye test in more ways than one.
Plus, it should also have a variety of engine options that will be right in line with what the market looks for. Having said all of that, the Scenic XMOD will make its debut at the Geneva Motor Show, where we’ll be able to know the full details about the vehicle.
For now, click past the jump to read about what we think about Renault’s new MPV.
The CLA-Class is, in all likelihood, still wet behind the ears, having only been around for a little over a month. But that hasn’t stopped the German automaker from rolling out a limited-edition version of the compact four-door coupe for its home-countryclientele.
It’s called the CLA Edition 1 and it’ll only be available for the first 12 months of the CLA-CLass’ lifespan. What it means is you have pretty much the entire year to buy one. Otherwise, well, you’re going to be out of luck.
It’s limited nature allows it to be completely distinct from the rest of its kind and that was made evident by a number of aesthetic enhancements, including a choice of five different colors - Cosmos Black, Mountain Grey, Cirrus White, Night Black and Designo Polar Silver Magno - to go with an AMG "Sport" package that features new bumpers with larger air intakes, enhanced skirts, and a set of black multi-spoke alloy wheels.
Inside, Mercedes dressed up the CLA Edition 1 with what it calls NEON ART, a fancy way of saying the interior features leather and microfiber upholstery with yellow stitching. Add a new Nappa leather-wrapped flat-bottomed sports steering wheel, and a new aluminum finish trim and there you have it, folks: Edition 1!
For the chance to own one, you probably need to be in Germany because the model will be exclusively sold there at a price of €35,402 ($47,400) for the base CLA 180 all the way up to €44,625 ($60,000) for the CLA 250 Sport.
Head past the jump to find out the specs and pricing of each trim of the CLA Edition 1
Back in the 1970s, Volkswagen thought it was a good idea to release a special-edition model of the popular Beetle with the designation "GSR", which stands for "Gelb Schwarzener Renner".
Translated to English, GSR stands for "Yellow Black Racer.” As the name suggested, that Beetle was dressed in yellow and black though, more importantly, it was far sportier and more exclusive than most Beetles of its kind with only 3,500 units built.
Fast forward to today at the 2013 Chicago Auto Show and Volkswagen thought it was a good idea to release the modern-day version of the Beetle GSR. And true to form, they’re calling it, well, the 2014 Beetle GSR.
Suffice to say, this is a pretty big deal, not only for those old enough to remember the original Beetle GSR, but also for the young bloods out there who can be reminded just how popular and sought after this special-edition model was back in the day.
There’s a lot to like about the new Beetle GSR and for our part, we can’t get enough of it.
UPDATE 05/13/13: Volkswagen has officially been given a sticker price. Click past the jump to see how much it’s going to cost you.
Find out more about the 2014 Volkswagen Beetle GSR after the jump
Just like its brethren, the Beetle Convertible Turbo R-Line comes packed with so many exterior and interior upgrades that spruces up the already fresh-looking Beetle. The exterior offers new bi-xenon headlights matched with LEDs to go with an R-Line badge on the front grille that makes sure everyone knows that this Beetle comes loaded with the program. Aluminum-alloy wheels measuring 19-inches and a new sport-tuned suspension was fitted into the car to further improve its driving characteristics.
As for the interior, Volkswagen went to lengths to give the Beetle a sportier look, highlighted by a "metallic-finish" dash and door trim, a flat-bottom R-Line multi-function leather steering wheel, stainless-steel R-Line scuff plates, aluminum sport pedals, and plenty of leather on the seats. Volkswagen also added a number of tech features, including an RNS 315 navigation system, keyless access with push-button start, and the totally awesome and ear-soothing Fender Premium Audio System.
At the end of the day, the R-Line upgrades are enough to spice up the Beetle Convertible Turbo. Some people might think that there’s not enough to warrant the badge, but for us, these add-ons are well worth your time.
Today, Volkswagen has dropped a first teaser image of the seventh-generation Golf R concept. Volkswagen took the creative route with this teaser and, instead of showing an indistinguishable close up of some random part of the hot hatchback, it placed the concept in a virtual block of ice to disguise its features.
Even though this teaser reveals nearly nothing, you can still make out larger air intakes in the front bumper and the overall “R” persona. Under the hood, the new Golf R will get a 2.0-liter TFSI engine with an output in the range of 290 horsepower. The engine will be connected to a six-speed manual or a six-speed DSG and will send power to all four wheels via a Haldex all-wheel-drive system. Of course, top speed will be limited to only 155 mph, but we expect a little improvement on its 0 to 60 mph time.
Thawing will begin 14 days from now and the official unveiling will be made at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show.
While Volkswagen is famous for building simple-looking cars that offer great practicality, it never really brought much eye candy to the table. That was the case until the Passat CC was born in 2009. Bringing coupe-like design features in a less expensive package, the Passat CC was a stunner in its heyday and in its current generation, it still is.
Now we might soon witness the Golf sporting the CC badge, if the recent reports are true. This Golf CC, like its bigger brother, will be designed along the sweeping lines of a coupe and have a much sportier stance. It will most likely look like a sensible VW Jetta with style and charisma injected to its design.
Like the Jetta, the Golf CC will sit on an extended version of the MQB platform that will underpin most of the small cars in the Volkswagen Group.
For the car to perform well in the market, looking sporty isn’t enough. So, expect more-powerful engines like the 120-horsepower 1.4-liter turbo or the 148-horsepower 2.0-liter turbo-diesel in the Golf CC’s engine lineup. If that isn’t powerful enough, then VW will later launch a GTi version of the Golf CC powered by the 2.0-liter TFSI four-cylinder engine that develops 220 horsepower, befitting the sporty image.
The VW Golf CC would clearly win in the price category against its rivals, but we will have to wait to find out if it also beats them in other categories as well. Nevertheless the Volkswagen Golf CC looks promising as it will bring style and sportiness in less expensive package.
Updated 01/21/2013: Today we have prepared a TopSpeed rendering of the upcoming Golf CC. The rendering combines design elements from the Passat CC with elements from the new generation Golf. We hope you like it!
Image Note: The above image is a TopSpeed rendering and is not an official image of the Golf CC.