Frankfurt Auto Show

Frankfurt Auto Show

Hiding behind the shadow of the bigger and better 2012 Lotus Exige S at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show is Lotus’ brand new Exige R-GT. This new racer marks the brand’s return to the rally world, 30 years after their World Rally Championship victory in the Talbot Talbot Sunbeam Lotus. The Exige R-GT will participate in the newly formed FIA GT category of the FIA Rally Championship on asphalt in Monte Carlo, Tour de Corse, and San Remo.

The new Exige R-GT shares the new Exige S model’s mid-mounted, transverse 3.5 liter DOHC V6 VVI-i engine, but power has been brought down to 300 HP because of the 34mm air restrictor required for racing. The Exige R-GT will also have to pack on ballast weight to meet FIA requirements of 1200 kg (2645 lbs).

"With the new R-GT rules in rally, it’s a very interesting time for us to return to the sport. Naturally our approach this time around will be different to when we won the championship with Talbot three decades ago but I think our philosophy is definitely the same, we want to compete and ultimately we want to win. Our new rally car, the Exige R-GT is a dream come true for those who are passionate about GT racing – this will be their car," said Group Lotus’ Director of Motorsport Claudio Berro.

UPDATE 12/28/2011: After its official debut in Frankfurt, the Exige R-GT headed to the Dallara’s headquarters in Varano Melegari, Palma on December 22, 2011 for its first track test under the watchful eye of Group Lotus Director of Motorsport, Claudio Berro, and technicians from the team. According to Lotus, the results were delightful and the team will continue to test the car until the 2012 FIA World Rally Championship season where the Exige will contend in the FIA GT category on asphalt at events in Monte Carlo, Tour de Corse, and San Remo. We have also added new images from the testing days. Enjoy!

The Evora GTE Concept’s engine is still a bit warm from its 2011 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance debut, and Lotus is already revving up the production version for the Frankfurt Motor Show. The Evora GTE road car was originally designed as a special limited edition for the Asian market, but Group Lotus has decided to expand its production to meet demand and reach further markets.

The Evora GTE is powered by a race-tuned 3.5-liter V6 engine that delivers a total of 444 HP, making it the most powerful Lotus road car ever built. It also delivers a comfortable and refined element to its high performance driving characteristics.

Commenting on the Evora GTE road car, Group Lotus CEO Dany Bahar said: "The response to this model in China has been so incredible, within days we had sold out with 114 orders. In response we decided that the only logical step from a business perspective was to increase production and widen our reach.

"What is unique about this car, is not just that it’s a serious race car – it’s a serious car. People get so excited when they see and especially hear it for the first time. It’s a very special car and will appeal to a very special type of driver – and they won’t be disappointed!"

UPDATE 09/13/2011: The new special edition Evora GTE has finally been unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor Show today. The new model comes with carbon fiber front and rear bumpers, a carbon fiber rear wing, and carbon fiber doors. This measure, next to the lightweight Recaro carbon fiber seats, help to reduce the total weight by 231 lbs.

UPDATE 12/19/2011: Lotus has dropped new images of the special edition Evora GTE - and we have to admit it looks great in yellow. See all of the images in our picture gallery!

Everyone expected the Frankfurt Motor to come with its share of surprise entrants and a new automaker based in London has provided just that with their very first auto show appearance in Frankfurt. They just brought a concept SUV that looks to have the BMW X6 and the Porsche Cayenne Turbo S in its sights.

The brand is called Eterniti - not to be confused with Infiniti - and they’ve introduced the Hemera concept SUV at the Frankfurt Motor Show. After promising to completely knock the entire auto industry upside its head, Eterniti more than delivered with the introduction of the Hemera, a concept SUV that promised big things leading up to its debut and has more than lived up to it in every which way.

UPDATE 12/19/11: The folks over at Eterniti have released new teaser photos of the Hemera SUV. You’ll notice that these two photos feature some slight modifications from what we first saw at the Frankfurt Motor Show, including a redesigned front fascia and new bespoke headlights. According to Hemera, the design modifications were partly done to further differentiate the Hemera from the car that it was based on, the Porsche Cayenne . Expect a few more nip and tucks done on the Hemera leading up to its debut at the 2012 Beijing Auto Show.

Find out more about the Eterniti Hemera Concept SUV after the jump

€3.5 million, or $4.83 million, will buy you a lot of things, including 12 Lamborghini Aventador supercars. Why anyone would need that many Aventadors is beyond us, but what is even more mind-boggling is why someone would spend that much money on a 1:8 scale model of the new Lamborghini supercar. Yes, one is for sale and it’s priced at $4.83 million.

This unbelievable scale model was presented by former Mercedes-Benz engineer and German model maker, Robert Gulpen, at the Frankfurt Motor Show. Made from some of the most precious materials used for construction, the scale model Aventador comes wrapped in 1/1000mm thin threads of solid gold with carbon fiber forming the entire body of the car, and solid gold and platinum rims and interior to finish it off. On top of that, the material used on the windows is bulletproof glass and the Lamborghini logo adorned in the back is made from gold, platinum, and other precious gems.

All told, the whole project required €2 million ($2.8 million), which is insane just to read. The other half of that cost most likely comes as a result of 500 hours of build time.

The car is set to be auctioned off soon, possibly at Sotherby’s or Chrystie’s in New York or Dubai. Expect the model to fetch a starting bid of €3.5 million - $4.83 million - with part of the final purchase price going to charity.

Whether somebody’s insane enough to actually pay 12 times the price of an actual Lamborghini Aventador is besides the point. Paying $5 million for just about anything, let alone a scale model, is crazy enough.

UPDATE 12/02/2011: Robert Guelpen has decided to further increase the value of his Aventador by gilding it with gold. The car will be sold in December 2011 and will more than likely enter the Guinness Book of Records. The car features approximately 700 diamonds studded on each of the two seats inside, the chassis is made in solid gold, the wheel rims are platinum, and other elements are made of carbon fiber.

UPDATE 12/12/12: What was initially priced at €3.5 million ($4.8 million) at an auction in December in New York, Robert Guelpen’s Aventador scale model has been re-evaluated by Sotheby’s and now carries an estimated price of €10.5 million ($13.6 million!). That’s 65 times more expensive than an ACTUAL Aventador. Wow.

Hit the jump for a video showing off the Aventador scale model.

For all of their vast experience in the auto tuning world, Mansory has never built a project for the Audi R8. Sure, there have been Ferraris , Porsches , and Mercedes ’, but no Audis.

All that, however, is about to change since the German tuning company has brought their very first program for the Audi supercar. The package is actually for the R8 V10 Spyder , which will be introduced to Mansory expertise courtesy of cosmetic, aerodynamic, and performance upgrades.

Fresh off of the box are the aforementioned cosmetic and aerodynamic improvements, which include a new bonnet, a new front grill, side skirts, and a new rear bumper. There’s also a new front spoiler that provides more downforce, a new rear apron with an integrated rear diffuser, and a set of 20" lightweight forged Mansory wheels rounding out the physical modifications on the R8 V10 Spyder.

Mansory is also offering a comprehensive interior program for its customers. Depending on tastes and preferences, customers can choose to dress up their R8 V10 Spyder with a new leather upholstery with Mansory couture and carbon applications, illuminated door entry strips, and aluminum pedals and footrests.

Of course, making the car prettier is not the only significant part of this Mansory-tuned R8 V10 Spyder. There’s also the matter of the car’s 5.2-liter V10 FSI engine, which sees a significant performance upgrade in the form of a newly-installed sports air filter, and a news sport exhaust system. The resulting modifications give the R8 V10 Spyder a performance boost that takes an already powerful 525 horsepower all the way up to 552 horsepower, to go with an increased peak torque of 406 lb/ft of torque.

UPDATE 11/22/11: Mansory has released new photos of their work on the Audi R8 Spyder. It was later than we thought, but nevertheless, the photos are well worth the delay. Check them out in the gallery section!

Earlier this month, we reported on a tidbit that Jaguar was going to the Frankfurt Motor Show with a new sports car concept in tow. Now, thanks to full specifications released by the company ahead of the show, we have a clear picture of what the British automaker is bringing to the biggest auto show in the calendar.

The concept is called the ’C-X16’ and has been described as a production concept that will serve as the prototype for future Jaguar sports cars. This car "aims to set new class benchmarks in design, vehicle dynamics and technology."

Some have speculated that this model will serve as the successor to the XK while others have reported that it’s a completely new model that has the Porsche 911 in its sights. These new specifications, while impressive, don’t exactly spell worthy competition for the new 911.

UPDATE 09/15/11: Jaguar has unveiled a new video for the C-X16 concept just after its official debut in Frankfurt. Also, for those of you who can not be in Germany these day for the show, you should check www.jaguarfuture.com to learn more about the C-X16.

UPDATE 11/18/11: The smokin’ hot Jaguar C-X16 Concept made its North American debut at the 2011 Los Angeles Auto Show. To our surprise, as well as many others we presume, the car that Jaguar brought to Frankfurt was different from the concept we just saw at LA with the latter sporting a new Neuron White exterior paint finish to go along with all the fancy digs the C-X16 already has in its fold. This, dear friends, is the epitome of a drop-dead, gorgeous Big Cat. Check out all the shots of the Neuron White C-X16 in the photo gallery!

UPDATE 11/29/11: A Jaguar insider has confirmed to TeamSpeed that the C-X16 concept is inches closer to mass production. The same source has told that Jaguar is currently working on the seat frames "to ensure the car will pass stringent crash tests."

Mercedes has caused history to repeat itself as they have come out with a roadster version for one of their popular coupes. This trend was seen in the SLR McLaren and will now repeat itself with the SLS AMG coupe version. The SLS AMG Roadster will be revealed in September at the Frankfurt Motor Show, but right now the car is under extreme testings.

In terms of design, the roadster version will remain faithful to the coupe version. However, it will drop the gullwing doors in favor of more traditional units. The SLS Roadster will be offered with Mercedes’ traditional retractable soft-top which can be opened and closed electrohydraulically while on the move up to 30 mph.

TheMercedes SLS AMG roadster version will be powered by a 6.3-liter V8 engine with 563 hp and 479 lb-ft of torque. However, being a much heavier model, it will rocket from 0 to 60mph in 4.0 seconds before topping out at approximately 192 mph.

In Europe, prices will start from € 195,160, or about $278,000 at the current exchange rates. The Mercedes’ US debut will be made later this fall.

UPDATE 11/07/2011: Mercedes has unveiled a new video presenting the history behind the SLS AMG Roadster photo shoot with Michael and Ralf Schumacher.

Hit the jump to read more about the new Mercedes SLS AMG Roadster.

At the beginning of August, Lamborghini revealed a teaser image announcing an extreme supercar for the Frankfurt Motor Show. A few guesses as to what supercar this could be were instantly thrown out, such as the roadster version of the Aventador or the production version of the Sesto Elemento. Now we know that this new special edition model is the Lamborghini Gallardo 570-4 Super Trofeo, limited to only 150 units and described as "the most extreme Gallardo ever."

The new Gallardo LP 570-4 Super Trofeo Stradale was inspired by the Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo and will be placed on the top of the Gallardo line-up. It is powered by a V10 engine that delivers a total of 570 HP and a peak torque 398 lbs-ft at 6500 rpm. The engine will be combined with an all-wheel-drive system and a robotized six-speed transmission controlled by steering wheel paddles.

With a total weight of 2954 lbs, the new special edition will make the 0 to 60 mph sprint in just 3.4 seconds and to 124 mph in 10.4 seconds, headed up to a top speed of 198 mph.

UPDATE 09/13/2011: We have added two new videos showing off the Lamborghini Gallardo LP 570-4 Super Trofeo Stradale’s official debut in Frankfurt. Enjoy!

UPDATE 10/26/2011: Lamborghini has found a pretty interesting solution to promote the new Gallardo LP 570-4 Super Trofeo Stradale: using a C’était un Rendezvous theme. And even if the video does not actually show the car, we can get a pretty good idea on just how fast it will be. Check it out!

UPDATE 11/03/2011: There hasn’t been too much on the new Gallardo Super Trofeo Stradale, but K & S Photographers have managed to n all of its beauty and glory. Hit the jump to watch the video!

Hit the jump to read more about the new Lamborghini Gallardo LP 570-4 Super Trofeo Stradale.

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If there’s anything better than a beautiful, red Ferrari 458 Italia, it’s that same beautiful, red Ferrari with its top stripped off. We received confirmation that Ferrari was planning on producing a Spider version of one of their highly successful new models back in 2009 from none other than Luca di Montezemolo, himself and now the covers have finally been pulled off.

Ladies and gentlemen, say hello to the 2012 Ferrari 458 Italia Spider.

The car is scheduled to make its public debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show next month, but the Prancing Horse wanted to release the first salvo of information, together with official photos, well ahead of that. Thank your lucky stars, people.

And now that the Ferrari 458 Italia Spider has officially arrived, the next question that needs to be answered now is when it’s going on sale. Word has it that Europe will get first crack at the Ferrari supercar around spring of 2012 with the US following suit towards the end of 2012.

UPDATE 09/27/2011: Price, Set, Buy! Ferrari has revealed pricing for their luscious 458 Italia Spyder! Sales for the drop top beauty will start in January for the US with prices starting at $257,000. Sales in Europe will begin in October and prices will start at 226,800 euros, or $309,000 at the current exchange rates.

UPDATE 01/09/12: Ferrari has now released the online configuration for the 458 Italia Spyder. We can’t say that we didn’t wait for this and now that its here, we’re all excited to see what we can do with our very own "virtual" 458 Italia Spyder.

Find out more about the 2012 Ferrari 458 Italia Spider after the jump

At this rate, we’d probably use a paddle and a canoe to get to Frankfurt, Germany for the year’s biggest automotive event. That’s how huge this event is shaping up to be and it’s about to get even bigger after Subaru has announced their intention to bring a new "technology concept" called the BRZ Prologue - Boxer Sports Car Architecture II.

The BRZ, which stands for ’Boxer engine’, ’Rear-wheel drive’, and ’Zenith’, could very well be the Japanese automaker’s answer to Toyota ’s version of the FT-86 that, ironically, the two are co-developing.

We don’t know exactly what to expect from the BRZ other than thinking it will be an RWD sports coupe and that it "embodies ultimate passion for the new sports car and confidence in its distinctive trademark and core technology." Subaru hasn’t revealed anything other than announcing that they’re bringing the car to Frankfurt and that the start of production is being planned for the spring of 2012, but hopefully, everything becomes crystal clear when the biggest auto show of the calendar year opens this September.

UPDATE 09/13/11: You remember when we said that we didn’t really know what to expect from the Subaru BRZ Concept heading to the Frankfurt Motor Show? Well, we certainly didn’t expect what we saw. You see, we where actually expecting something tangible that could take the look of a concept car. But what we got looked something like an X-ray mock-up version of the concept, which incidentally still doesn’t have all the elements that would constitute an actual car. What we did find out, and its something that could prove useful in the future, is that the car will carry a naturally-aspirated 2.0-liter horizontally-opposed Boxer engine that features Toyota’s direct-injection technology called the D-4S.

UPDATE 09/22/11: After being postponed for some time, Subaru will finally be bringing a full concept version of the BRZ sports car to the 2011 Los Angeles Auto Show in November. However, this concept won’t reveal anything about the production version scheduled to appear in December. Turns out, both Subaru and Toyota have agreed not to display anything from the final production version of the BRZ or the FT-86 until the vehicles’ official debuts in Tokyo. So we’ve basically been chasing the BRZ and FT-86 carrots only to find out they are actually turds. Not cool. (Car And Driver)


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