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.

International recording artist and Mr. Worldwide, Pitbull, recently put his design hat on to customize a 2013 Dodge Dart which was part of a sweepstakes at the iHeartRadio Music Festival in Las Vegas.

The car, called the Dodge Dart iHeart, received Pitbull’s full design touches, which as you might expect, centered on his own style. You know the classic Pitbull ensemble, right? Tailored suit, classic sunglasses, and the contrasting pin stripes; the Dart iHeart was designed to be an extension of Pitbull’s top level swag.

The Dart iHeart is highlighted by a high contrast matte white exterior and black roof, a custom set of 18" liquid graphite aluminum wheels, a black and pear white leather and suede interior, the addition of a new hood scoop and rear spoiler, and the artful use of metals that not only evoke Pitbull’s classic style, but also add a dose of mystery to the compact sedan.

So who took home the Dodge Dart iHeart? A man named Jack Walters from New York, who personally took the keys to his brand new, one-off ride from the hands of Pitbull himself.

Jack Walters is a lucky man.

The last time we saw a G-Powered BMW it was the M5 Hurricane RR , which ended up being the world’s fastest LPG-powered vehicle. Well, G-Power is back for a little bit more, but this time in a much smaller package: the 1M.

If the 1M and its 335-horsepower turbocharged 6-cylinder engine just isn’t enough for you, the BMW 1M G1 V8 Hurricane RS by G-Power just might be the ticket. G-Power took special care of this 1M coupe and brought it to a point that just about any auto enthusiast could be both impressed and scared to death of it at the same time.

What’s awesome, though, is the amount of careful planning that BMW put into the 1M straight from the factory had a direct relationship with the amount of power G-Power was able to crank out. BMW fitted the 1M with the front and rear axles of its M3 counterpart, giving it the clean and stout base that the 1M needs to handle more intense power output.

So, did G-Power earn another gold star with its latest BMW modification or did it fall a little short of the precedent it set with the M5 Hurricane RR?

Updated 11/02/2012: The guys over G-Power took their latest G1 V8 Hurriance RS out for a test drive and the result was impressive: the car was able to hit a top speed of 314 km/h (195 mph). Enjoy the video!

Click past the jump to find out.

Honda FCX Clarity

Since 2009, Honda has had hydrogen fuel cell vehicles running around in Europe and in 2011, Honda joined the Clean Energy Partnership in Europe to help bring hydrogen fuel cell vehicles to the forefront. Now Honda is set to expand its hydrogen fuel cell vehicle production in a huge way by replacing the existing FCX Clarity with an all-new fuel cell vehicle in 2015. What’s more is that this car will be marketed in Japan and the U.S., as well as Europe.

Hydrogen fuel cell vehicles use hydrogen to create electricity and the electricity is used to power the car. This means that there is literally no non-renewable fuel used and the only emissions created are water vapor. The details are still pretty sketchy on the entire project and Honda has pretty much only let us in on a little bit of information. In a statement, Honda stated that this new fuel cell vehicle will “showcase further technological advancement and significant cost reduction that Honda has accomplished.”

The latter statement is thanks to a new manufacturing process that Honda will adopt that allows it to produce its cars at the same time around the world, as opposed to staggering the production around the globe. Per Honda’s research, and general consensus agreement, this will reduce the cost of producing all Hondas, not just FCVs.

The biggest issue that Honda will run into in the U.S. is the hydrogen-delivery infrastructure. You can’t really head on down to your local BP station and top off your hydrogen tanks at will. It definitely takes a little planning and we are interested to see what Honda has up its sleeves for this. Don’t be shocked to start seeing Honda offering up filling stations at local dealerships that sell these cars.

We’ll keep you up to date on the production and details on this upcoming Honda FCV.

Though Daihatsu may be out of sight out of mind for many Americans, due to its several-decade-long American hiatus, it is actually alive, well, and thriving in smaller markets, like Indonesia. Most Daihatsu vehicles are very utilitarian, providing little thrill and tons of functionality, but it looks as if Daihatsu may be working its way toward a new area with its latest D-R Concept.

At the 2012 Indonesian International Motor Show in Jakarta, Toyota subsidiary, Daihatsu, unveiled its all-new D-R Concept roadster. The exact details on the model are still a little scarce and the chances of it hitting the market are positioned somewhere between hell freezing over and the day it rains frogs, but the concept at least gives you an idea of the direction Daihatsu is looking to take its automobiles.

Currently, the most popular Daihatsu is overwhelmingly the Xenia, a compact 7-passenger MPV, and this roadster is anything but the Xenia.

Click past the jump to read more about the D-R Concept.

General production Audi models aren’t the only cars that ABT Sportsline loves to tune. Turns out, they’ve set their eyes on limited edition models too, including the A1 Quattro.

As stunning as the car is to look at it, ABT Sportsline left any kind of improvements on the A1 Quattro’s looks alone. What they did was take the car’s 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine and tweak it to give the sports hatchback an increased output without having to compromise on the car’s fuel consumption and exhaust emissions.

After going under the ABT Sportsline knife, the A1 Quattro’s output has been spiked from the standard 256 horsepower and 258 lb/ft of torque figures all the way up to 307 horsepower and 295 lb/ft of torque. The improved output nets a faster 0-62 mph time of 5.4 seconds, as opposed to the standard model’s 0-62 mph time of 5.7 seconds.

Talk about giving more reason to fall in love with the A1 Quattro, ABT Sportsline has one for us.

Mini Countryman

Here MINI grows again – well, potentially grows – as in an interview with Inside Line, BMW announced the potential of three new MINI models. We’ll start with the not-so-fun ones first, as Harald Kreuger let IL know that a larger SUV, to complement the Countryman , is in the works, as is a sedan model. The SUV would likely have some chances of making it to the U.S., but the sedan would likely head to developing markets, like China or Indonesia.

Okay, enough with the family-style stuff, let’s see what we’re really here to talk about. Kreuger also announced that MINI is considering a roadster model. Kreuger even went as far as to point to the master of said domain, the original MX-5 Miata , as the potential mold for this vehicle. This would mean that we would have a quick, fun-to-drive roadster bearing the traditional MINI look. We could live with that.

Additionally, we have to look into the distant possibility of BMW sharing its 1.5-liter three-cylinder turbocharged engine lineup with said Miata-like sports car. Considering the rumors afloat about the upcoming MX-5 Miata boasting a far more powerful four-cylinder engine than ever before, this very well may be the time to take a swipe at the compact roadster crown by including the new 1.5-liter Bimmer engine.

If anyone can create a machine that rivals the fun-to-drive factor that the Miata has always afforded its owners, BMW can. And that 1.5-liter 3-pot has some serious potential.

In the same report, MINI also announced that it may open up a British-design office to help it maintain the “Britishness” that makes MINIs so attractive to the world. Additionally, MINI is midway through a $1.2 billion renovation of its Oxford plant to extend its manufacturing capacity to 250,000 units and it will be renting space from the Mitsubishi -Volvo Nedcar factory in the Netherlands starting in 2014.

We certainly hope that all of these upcoming models will feature a little bit of their own character, as opposed to being simply squashed up or stretched Coopers . Stay tuned for more!

Source: Inside Line
Honda Civic Type R

The Honda Civic Type R is one of those cars that import tuners – regardless of their make preference – would give just about anything to get their hands on. We knew that Honda was working on an all-new Civic type R, thanks to a few savvy spy photographers, but the details were still rather sketchy on when and where it would be released.

Well, with a news release that Honda sent out today, we have found out that the Civic Type R is a certainty and that this beast will hit the market in 2015. Unfortunately, this model will remain a fabled unicorn for the U.S. market, as Honda also announced that the Type R will be developed specifically for the European market – what a bummer.

According to Honda, the Civic Type R will apply technologies developed while preparing for the World Touring Car Championship (WTCC). Given its WTCC roots, Honda has huge expectations of its 2015 or 2016 Civic Type R, as it also announced that it is aiming to make the Civic Type R the fastest front-wheel-drive car to ever lap the mighty Nürburgring .

That 2-year-old record is currently held by the Renault Megane RS Trophy and the time to beat would be 8:07.97, which is about 54 seconds slower than the Porsche 918 Spyder popped off the other day . Rather lofty goals indeed, Honda, as the Megane RS Trophy is no slouch, pumping out 256 horsepower, 360 Nm (265 pound-feet) of torque.

Reports are showing that the Civic Type R will arrive with between 220 and 230 horsepower, putting it far short of the Renault Renault . Plus, if Honda is planning to use its aging i-VTEC technology, there is simply no way the Civic Type R can produce the torque required to navigate the `Ring fast enough to beat the Renault’s time. The only way that Honda can expect to pull off this feat is to add a little boost to its VTEC engine to pump up the bottom-end torque and top-end horsepower, or simply create the most ridiculous power-to-weight ratio by deleting half of the body panels…

We’ll keep an eye out for more.

Audi is speeding up their unveiling process by releasing details on a second model just one day after revealing the A3 Sportback . It’s the S3 version’s turn to shine as it joins the Sportback at the 2012 Paris Auto Show. The quicker version of the A3 will go on sale early in 2013 at a starting price of €38,900, or about $51,800 at the current exchange rates (price for Germany).

The Audi S3 is powered by a 2.0 TFSI turbocharged four-cylinder engine that delivers a total of 300 HP and 280 lb-ft of torque. This power is enough to sprint the car from 0 to 60 mph in 5.1 seconds and up to a top speed of 155 mph.

In terms of design, the new S3 looks a lot like the A3, except it has added elements like an S single-frame grille, a revised front bumper, new side skirts, aluminum-look mirror caps, a new exhaust system with quad tailpipes, a roof spoiler, and a different rear bumper. These elements differentiate the S3 from the A3, unless of course you add the S-Line package to the A3, which would then make them look almost identical.

UPDATE 09/21/2012: This review has been updated with the official details and images for the new Audi S3.

Hit the jump to read more about the 2013 Audi S3.

French automaker Citroen has been relatively coy about their plans for the 2012 Paris Motor Show , but with the event a little over a week away, we’re slowly getting a good idea on what’s in store from Citroen.

One of the models headed to Paris is the DS3 Electrum Concept, an all-electric concept that promises to take the phrase of an electric supermini to new heights.

Details have yet to be revealed, but Citroen has said that the car can run a range of up to 75 miles and will be powered by a pair of 65 kW motors that has been fitted on the front axle with a Panasonic 17.5 kWh lithium-ion battery.

The automaker also describes the DS3 Electrum Concept as a car with "an innovative and non-intrusive design,” which means we’re expecting nothing short of stunning for this car.

That being said, we’re looking forward to seeing what the DS3 Electrum Concept is all about. Chances are, we’re not alone.

Note: Photo is of the Citroen DS3

Seeing as the Paris Motor Show is the home auto show of Citroen , it’s pretty obvious that they’re going to bring a whole load of vehicles to the event.

With a little over a week before the doors to the event officially open, the French automaker is slowly unveiling their Paris-bound line-up, including a pair of special edition DS models carrying the "Pure Pearl" special edition designation.

One of these models is the DS4 Pure Pearl, which, as the name suggests, comes finished with a pearlescent white body color to go with touches of gloss chrome detailing and a new set of 18" alloy wheels. Other unique features of the DS4 Pure Pearl include an interior that’s been dressed in a watchstrap-style club leather upholstery that has been complemented with blue over-stitching.

For this particular model of the DS4, Citroen decided to give it a more powerful 1.6-liter HDi 160 engine instead of the standard model’s HDi 110 engine. What that means is that the DS4 Pure Pearl Edition comes packed with a tidy 110 horsepower and 199 lb/ft of torque and mated to an automatic transmission.

It’s not going to blow a lot of cars on the road, but for a hatchback of its caliber, it sure has plenty of promise.


Back to top