It seems like since the beginning of time, Mercedes has offered a diesel option on its sedans to its U.S. customers, but BMW has always avoided putting these loud and relatively sluggish engines in its U.S.-bound cars. According to various reports, this is all due to come to an end in the near future, as BMW is prepping its 3.0-liter diesel power plant for U.S.-bound 7 Series models.
Nothing is definitive yet and we are still in the early phases of all of the speculation and reports, but we anticipate it to bear a 735d or 740d badge. We also do not know if BMW is planning to further tune the current 3.0-liter diesel engine to exceed its current 265 horsepower and 425 pound-feet of torque, but we certainly anticipate the German auto builder to pump up the horsepower to the 300 horsepower range to attract buyers.
As for fuel economy, we can expect the highway economy to jump from the 17 mpg city and 25 mpg highway to roughly 19 mpg city and 29 mpg highway, given the fact that the much heavier and less aerodynamic X5 gets 26 mpg highway with the same diesel engine. This would make the 7 Series one of the most fuel efficient cars in its class, as the automaker strives to stay ahead of the CAFÉ curve.
Reports are pointing toward this new engine arriving in showrooms sometime in late-2013, but don’t be surprised to see it makes its way over here a little earlier. We will continue to monitor the details of this new engine and keep you updated as more information becomes available.
A few weeks back, we reviewed BMW’s Active Sound system, the system that pipes V-10 engine sounds through the stereo system. We dubbed this system a useless gimmick because a turbo V-8 is a damn fine sounding engine, but owners cannot opt to turn it off without pulling a fuse that also turns off the entire stereo system. Well, it looks like BMW is not alone in this game.
Starting In 2014, Maserati will be selling its first ever diesel-powered vehicle, the Kubang SUV to compete with the Porsche Cayenne diesel in the European market. What Car? asked Maserati’s Vice President of Product Development, Roberto Corradi, about the notoriously beautiful engine sounds that Maserati buyers know and love in their cars and its potential effect on the sales of this diesel SUV.
Corradi responded by stating that engineers are working on using the Kubang’s stereo system to give it a nice engine note. This can only be interpreted as Maserati piping in fake engine sounds through the stereo. Unlike the BMW M5, we see a purpose for this, just like we do in electric cars, as these economic diesel engines just don’t sound cool. This piping in sounds of a high-performance engine can make drivers feel more like they are driving a true Maserati rather than a slower diesel model.
All we ask of Maserati is to install an “On/Off” switch that allows its owner to shut this feature off if he prefers natural engine sounds. As long as that’s taken care of, we have no problem with this feature and actually find it pretty neat.
One Lap America actually has roots dating back to the original Cannonball Sea-to-Shining-Sea Memorial Trophy Dash, known simply as Cannonball. Many of today’s enthusiasts think that Cannonball was simply a movie or plot, but this was actually a real-life cross-country race that included high speeds on U.S. highways.
The original Cannonball only lasted five runs until its organizer, Brock Yates, decided he had better quit this no-holds-barred race before the authorities decide to close it down. In 1984, the Cannonball returned, but was not about making it across the country as fast as possible, but about making it through a course that went throughout the lower 48 states and ended up with the amount of miles closest to Brock’s estimate.
In the modern era of the One Lap America, the race is now about following the rules of the road, as you drive throughout a predetermined course, and between these leisurely drives, you have track events. The scoring of this event is solely based on the track event results, but you and your co-driver(s) must also survive driving 24 hours on end, stopping only to enjoy a “gourmet” gas station hot dog or two along the way.
This 19-event, eight-day racing series just wrapped up on Saturday and we have your full list of winners in each class and we have also broken down a list of all of the oddest and most awesome cars to grace the 2012 running.
Click past the jump to read about the odd and awesome cars, as well as the winners from each class. Full story
German tuner, Hofele Design, has earned a stellar reputation as one of the leading Porsche Cayenne tuners in the world. Their program for the Porsche SUV, called the "Cayster GT 670," has been developed for a number of model years for the Cayenne and we’re not the least bit surprised to find out that they’ve released an updated version for the 2012 model.
Made up of a comprehensive aerodynamic body kit to go with a performance program, the 2012 Cayster GT 670 is one Cayenne that has truly been modded to look more aggressive than a standard 2012 Cayenne looks.
The first part of the package is a 14-piece aero kit that includes a number of new "bolt-on" components, including a new front bumper with integrated LED lights, widened wheel arches, a new "PowerDome" hood, new side sills, a rear spoiler and roof wing, and a new rear bumper with its own diffuser. Rounding off the exterior changes are a new set of 20" or 22" alloy wheels that have been finished in either black or silver.
Inside, the German tuner fitted new two-tone "StarLight" leather seats with quilted accents and Hofele Design logos embroidered on the headrests.
As far as performance is concerned, Hofele Design has a number of modifications for both the Cayenne Diesel and Cayenne S Hybrid. For the former, the engine enhancements increased the output of the SUV from the standard 241 horsepower and 405 lb/ft of torque all the way up to 296 horsepower and 479 lb/ft of torque. Meanwhile, the latter gets an increased output of 474 horsepower and 543 lb/ft of torque, a significant improvement from the standard model’s 374 horsepower and 427 lb/ft of torque numbers.
The recent 33rd Vienna Motor Symposium brought out some of the most amazing details about Volkswagen’s future plans, ranging from internal combustion engines to hybrids and electrics. However, one of the most amazing announcements involved a diesel engine for the future Porsche Boxster.
This isn’t the first time Porsche will be offering a diesel engine for their models - they are already doing it with the Cayenne and Panamera - but offering it in two large models and then going to a tiny sports car is quite a jump. It may sound crazy, but Porsche has indicated that it could happen in the future.
Porsche R&D Chief and VW Group’s engine guru Wolfgang Hatz said at the conference that he is "firmly convinced the internal combustion engine will remain dominant in the foreseeable future. The diesel has arrived and is a firm part of our strategy. There will be more powerful variations with Porsche-like performance. It would be wrong to say no to a Boxster diesel for all times."
This news follows the announcement of the Porsche Boxster E, which has been in the prototype stage for a couple of years ans should be debuting for the 2013 MY. The Boxster E is powered by two independent electric motors - one on the front axle and one on the rear - that develop a total power output of 241 HP and a maximum total torque of 398 lbs-ft at a maximum engine speed of approximately 12,000 rpm. With this amount of power, the car will sprint from 0 to 60 mph in 5.5 seconds and can hit a top speed of 124 mph, all while producing zero tailpipe emissions.
The question is which type of engine would you prefer for the Boxster: a diesel or a full electric? Let us know in the comments section below!
Every car buff knows that when you need to haul 15,000+ pounds, rip a stump out of the ground, or pull down an aging barn, you’re best off if you use a diesel-powered machine. Not due to its horsepower, but due to its torque. See, diesel engines notoriously have extremely high torque ratings, but their horsepower is typically very low in comparison.
So now you can understand our confusion and excitement when we hear about a diesel-powered dragster. That’s like hearing about a 1994 Geo Metro that can tow 10,000 pounds; it just doesn’t quite make sense. Well, now it does. What we have in the above video is a rail car with an International DT466 engine, which primarily saw use in school buses and farm equipment.
We are not too sure which DT466 this dragster has, as there are several variants – MaxForce DT466, DT466E, and DT466 – but we do know they produced a maximum of 300 horsepower, which is certainly not enough to get the car down a quarter mile in 7.6 seconds. According to the original poster of the video, the engine was built by famed diesel engine specialists Hypermax.
Needless to say it is fairly badass to hear a diesel engine spooling up three turbo chargers, then flying down a racetrack with black smoke billowing away. Yeah, a 7-second drag car is fun, but the added effect of the diesel sights and sounds just make it absolutely insane.
Crank up those speakers nice and loud, and enjoy the sounds of this beast.
We haven’t seen a new Peugeot sold in the U.S. since the company pulled out of our market in 1991, and we will likely never see one again, despite their loose ties to Chrysler. This doesn’t mean that they don’t produce some cool cars, which they most certainly do. Another cool thing they do is take risks when it comes to marketing. This can lead to an absolute win or a complete loss.
This leads us to the all-new Peugeot 208, which is the European super-mini car that the automaker released as the XY Concept in Geneva. This isn’t your typical run-of-the-mill super-mini, however, as it features an impressively modern design that takes the super-mini class to a whole new level. But we are not here to talk about the 208 and its deceptively large cabin, and ultra-low emissions diesel engines. Nope, we are here to talk about only one thing… Dancing!
That’s right, Peugeot it pulling out all the stops in advertising the new 208 with the release of the “Let your Body Drive” ad campaign. It features Marquese “Nonstop” Scott – a dancer who gained fame from a viral video – performing some sweet moves around a parking lot.
Little homage is paid to the 208, as the video centers around Scott’s dancing. It’s kind of similar to those blue jeans commercials that have more to do with a scantily clad person than the jeans themselves. The commercial is just there to get your attention and make you remember it. Ah, isn’t marketing cool!
So kick back and crank up your speakers, then watch the above video of something that would likely injure most of us. We think this one is an absolute win for Peugeot. Have a look at the car too; it’s really pretty cool… for a super-mini.
Just a few weeks ago, we teased you about Porsche bringing its popular-in-Europe clean diesel engine to the U.S., and installing it in the Cayenne. Not only is this engine powerful, boasting 240 horsepower, 406 pound-feet of torque, and towing 7,716 pounds, but it is also economical, getting 28 mpg.
According to our colleagues over at Car and Driver, we are essentially just getting Europe’s hand-me-downs. Much like a big brother does with clothes that are too small for him, European Porsche drivers have grown out of the 3.0-liter V-6 diesel that we are just now getting and are moving into a larger engine, a full two cylinders larger that is.
Yup, Porsche will be adding in a V-8 diesel option to the Cayenne lineup in the “very near future,” according to Car and Driver’s report. It looks like the most likely and cost-effective diesel engine to offer is the Audi 4.2-liter V-8 that cranks out 346 horsepower and 590 pound-feet of torque, given Porsche and Audi are in bed under the VW umbrella. Given how well the smaller 3.0-liter diesel performs now, this engine would make the Cayenne diesel a screamer – as much as a diesel can be a screamer. It would also thrust its towing rating toward a truck-like 10,000-pound mark.
With that said, there are also rumors afloat that another VW affiliate, Bentley, may be working directly with Porsche to develop this new diesel engine.
Now, before you start getting all excited for this large diesel engine, you can forget about it. Porsche does not appear to have any plans on bringing this larger diesel engine to the U.S. This is no surprise, as the European market is easier for Porsche to distribute to, as well as the fact that Euro drivers are accustomed to buying these clean diesels than U.S. buyers are. Maybe one day the European market will outgrow this engine and we will finally get it here, but the chances are slim.
We all understand that the European market was the first to really get nailed with high gas prices. They were paying over $5 per gallon while the U.S. market still was just cresting the $2 per gallon mark. This forced the European market to start accepting smaller and less desirable vehicles in hopes of getting better economy, while folks in the States continued to drive Hummers and other large SUVs.
Now that gas is hitting $4 per gallon, the U.S. buyers are starting to become more receptive to smaller cars with upwards of 40 mpg capabilities and hybrids cresting the 50 mpg mark. However, we are still left out in one market, the ultra economic clean diesels. The latest one is the 2012 Chevrolet Aveo, which is known as the Sonic in the U.S.
In the U.S., the highest mpg available on the Sonic is 40 mpg and that is the optional 1.4-liter turbocharged engine, which we have our doubts if any normal driver can actually hit 40 mpg in this car. In the U.K., the Aveo has several four-cylinder engine options, including a 1.2-liter gasoline, 1.3-liter diesel, 1.3-liter Eco Diesel, and a 1.4-liter. The highway fuel economy on these engines is 68.9 mpg, 83.1 mpg, 85.6 mpg, and 62.7 mpg, respectively.
None of these engines would make the Sonic a speed demon, like the relatively quick Sonic LTZ and its 1.4-liter turbo engine, but will Chevy ever bring these engine options to the U.S. market? We understand that diesel fuel is not as readily available as regular gasoline, but they certainly give the U.S. buyer an option other than hybrid or electric, which have technologies that could end up requiring rather pricy repairs in the future.
We’re not singling out Chevy here, as Ford has its ECOnetic system getting 65+ mpg in a Ford Fiesta. Our best Fiesta gets an arguable 40 mpg on the highway. Seemingly every car company has a super-Eco diesel engine in its European lineup, but we have yet to see one in the U.S. We think the time has come for one to show up.
Europeans have been driving a diesel version of the Porsche Cayenne since 2009, but now Porsche has finally decided that it was the right time for the US market to get in on the action. After being rumored for quite some time, the US version version of the Cayenne Diesel will be making its world debut at the 2012 New York Auto Show.
The new Cayenne Diesel is powered by an efficient 3.0-liter V6 turbo
diesel engine that delivers a total of 240 HP and 406 lb.-ft. of torque. It sprints from 0 to 60 mph in just 7.2 seconds and can hit a top speed of 135 mph. This figures are delivered while still providing a fuel economy of 23 mpg on a combined cycle. The engine is mated to an 8-speed Tiptronic S transmission, without the Auto Start/Stop function available on other Cayenne variants.
The new Porsche Cayenne Diesel will go on sale in September 2012 at a starting price of $55,750, not including a $975 destination charge.
Hit the jump to read more about the 2013 Porsche Cayenne Diesel. Full story