Car Reviews

Peugeot launched the 308 in 2007 as the successor to the 307 . The company’s new competitor to the Volkswagen Golf and Ford Focus was based on the same chassis as the 307 but received a redesigned body and a revamped interior. The 308 included a host of gasoline and diesel engines at launch, and it carried over unchanged until a facelift in 2011. A brand-new 308 was unveiled in late 2013, sporting Peugeot’s new design language showcased on the 508 sedan and the 208 hatchback. Besides inaugurating the new Peugeot numbering system where the final digits remain fixed, the 308 received the 2014 European Car of the Year award, beating vehicles the likes of the BMW i3 and Tesla Model S . As we’re moving closer to the 2015 model year, Peugeot is introducing a warmed-up GT model that boasts extra power and sportier looks compared to the standard versions.

This new GT trim is available in both the hatchback and wagon models. Power is provided by either a gasoline or a diesel engine, with both mills being the most powerful of the 308 lineup as of September 2014. Beefed-up engines aside, the GT is also a more stylish proposition for hatchback and wagon consumers, as it comes with a host of unique features inside and out.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Peugeot 308 GT.

It took BMW about a year to release the 2 Series Convertible to sit alongside the Coupe version , but now that the drop-top is here on official terms, Munich is rolling out all the goodies that come with each new model. This time around, the Germans started with the M Sport Package, a bundle that adds a touch of aggressiveness to the stylish cabriolet. It’s for those looking to get more than just a plain 2 Series Convertible in terms of looks, but can do just fine without the brawnier engines of the M235i or the M2 .

As you might have already guessed, the M Sport Package leaves the drop-top’s powertrain unaltered. The proven 2.0-liter, four-cylinder unit gets to keep its 240 ponies and 255 pound-feet of torque, which do an excellent job at pushing the 2 Series Convertible from 0 to 60 mph in 5.7 seconds with rear-wheel drive or 5.6 seconds with the available xDrive system.

Click past the jump to read more about the BMW 2 Series Convertible with the M Sport Package.

Volvo is the king of the family-hauling luxury SUV . When the XC90 hit the scene, it began a slow domination of the three-row market. Soon after, the Swedish automaker moved into the smaller market with the XC60 and once again, Volvo had a relative hit for the brand. Now for the new 2015.5 model, the XC60 is updated, upgraded and supposedly better than ever, and I was going to drive the new, more fuel efficient T6 Drive-E model.

As someone who ordinarily hates family hauling crossovers, but loves nicely designed cars like those from Sweden, I was interested in giving this car a run for its money. One of my favorite small hatches of all time is the Volvo C30 , so would Volvo be able to make me like a crossover ?

It is great to look at, has lots of nice details and features, plus it has 300 horsepower under the hood. I took the keys for a week and a few hundred miles to see if it was worth buying. Would the fuel saving features ruin the fun? Would the generally boring driving dynamics of a family car make me hate driving it?

Read on to find out more about the new 2015.5 Volvo XC60 T6 Drive-E.

Porsche Exclusive is running out of models to work on. That appears to be the case after Porsche’s design division released a new program for one of its models, namely the Cayenne .

The new program is the latest in a series of models that Porsche has been working on. Remember the Porsche Cayman from a few weeks ago? This time, the Cayenne gets treated to a comprehensive exterior and interior upgrade, highlighted by the Palladium Metallic exterior paint finish.

The color is not dramatic to the point that its style and character changes, but it is significant enough to provide a new look to the luxury SUV. If anything, the gold touches on the body and wheels of the Cayenne S bring out a fresh and regal visual appeal to the mighty Porsche SUV .

I admittedly don’t own a Cayenne, but if I did, this is the kind of look I want it to have. It’s classy and flashy at the same time. More importantly, it’s indicative of what Porsche Exclusive can do when you let it run around and work on any model it likes.

Click past the jump to read more about the Porsche Cayenne S Palladium Metallic By Porsche Exclusive.

The Formula E Championship kicked off in spectacular style over the weekend, featuring a last-lap crash between the race leaders Nicolas Prost and Nick Heidfeld that gift-wrapped the historic win to Lucas di Grassi. That’s what everybody’s talking about and rightfully so. But the inaugural Formula E race also saw the BMW i8 take center stage as the series’ official safety car.

Isn’t it fitting that a championship among electric-powered race cars would have a low-emission, hybrid sports car like the i8 serving as its safety car?

The BMW Qualcomm i8 Safety Car, as it’s officially known, was joined by its little brother, the BMW i3 , which also performed duties as the series’ official medical car and extraction car. Might as well keep it in the family!

True to form, the i8 Safety Car ended up taking part in a busy and action-packed race, none more dramatic than the hellacious crash in the last lap of the race. While jockeying for the lead, Prost’s Renault made contact with Heidfeld’s Venturi, sending the latter into the barricades in one of the most spectacular crashes we’ve seen this year. Fortunately, both Prost and Venturi escaped the accident in relatively unscathed.

At the very least, it gave us a good preview of how exciting the new FIA Formula E Championship can be. The BMW i8 Safety Car already knows that after only one race manning the track.

Click past the jump to read more about the BMW i8 Safety Car.

Posted on by Simona  

The Porsche 911 started its run back in 1963 - and oh what a run it is -, but it wasn’t until 1999 that a GT3 version was offered up for our ravenous consumption. It came to complete the series of performance vehicles that started back in 1973 with the 911 RS, a model that was capable of sprinting from 0 to 60 mph in 5.5 seconds and to 100 mph in 13 seconds. Why the short history lesson? Well, the new generation GT3 has just made its world debut at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show and would be nice to make a comparison between the things that were and the things to come.

The new GT3 is lighter and more powerful than the model it replaces, and it brings innovative features like the first active rear wheel steering in a production Porsche. There is a bad news too unfortunately: the new GT3 will only be offered with a PDK transmission - at least for now!

Updated 09/16/2014: Porsche unveiled a new video showing the new 911 GT3 in action on the track. Enjoy!

Hit the jump to read more about the next generation Porsche GT3.

It appears Toyota is readying a new iteration of its famed Hilux midsize pickup truck . Our spy photographers grabbed these images along a mountain road in southern Europe as the Japanese automaker put this test mule through its paces.

Absent from the pictures but present on-site was a Volkswagen Amarok , a direct competitor for the Hilux. While the two trucks aim at the same market, the VW is regarded as more spacious and comfortable than past Hilux trucks. Since Toyota brought it along, perhaps we can expect a more civilized and roomy Hilux.

We can expect the upcoming Hilux to include a bevy of gasoline and diesel engine options, along with both manual and automatic transmissions and two- and four-wheel-drive. At this point, no details exist about its powertrain options.

Considering the new offerings coming to the U.S. by way of the Chevrolet Colorado , GMC Canyon , Nissan Navara , and a rumored Honda Ridgeline , Toyota may elect to bring the new Hilux to the States as the Tacoma . If this possibility becomes a reality, then we could see a new Tacoma by 2017, if not sooner.

Then again, Toyota could stick with its current U.S.-spec Tacoma, opting for a heavy refresh with new looks, new underpinnings, and generously updated powertrain options. Only time will tell, but rest assured TopSpeed will cover it.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2016 Toyota Hilux.

Holden has built small utility vehicles since the early 1950s. At first it was the Special-based Utility. The Kingswood-based coupe utility followed in 1968 and remained an integral part of the lineup until the model got the axe in 1984. The body style returned in 1990 as part of the Commodore family and adopted the familiar Ute name. Since Chevrolet cut the El Camino from its lineup in 1987, the Ute remained the only mainstream utility coupe manufactured by General Motors. The Holden Ute has become increasingly powerful over the last two decades, especially with HSV building its beefed-up version. Unfortunately, the Ute saga will come to an end in 2016, when Holden is scheduled to cease vehicle manufacturing operations in Australia. As the 2015 model year looms, HSV is bidding farewell to its iconic muscle pickup by launching the GTS Maloo, the most-powerful Ute ever created in Australia.

Still cranky about GM not wanting to import the Commodore Ute to North America? Well, then get ready to have a seizure because the GTS Maloo is the coolest coupe utility since the 1970 El Camino SS 454 LS6. And it’s supercharged!

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 HSV GTS Maloo.

The crisp, cold air caught me off guard when I stepped from the hotel into the staging area where Lexus had filed a handful of its newest creations into two lines, prepped for a drive through the lush countryside that envelopes New York’s Hudson Valley. The brisk air might not have been what this Floridian was used to in mid-September, but once behind the wheel of the 2015 Lexus RC F, things became familiar.

Though I’d not sat in Lexus’ two-door, rear-drive sports coupe a day in my life, the interior was an immediately recognizable place, harking back to my time in the 2014 IS 350 F-Sport. The controls fell in the same position, the infotainment screen showed the same Enform system, even the overall design looked like I’d accidentally sat in the wrong Lexus.

And that’s not a bad thing.

While there’s plenty of IS flavor in the new RC, there’s even more that’s unfamiliar. The beautifully stitched sports seats, the reworked gauge cluster, and the center console arrangement are all new, not to mention the 2+2 seating configuration.

Slipping the eight-speed automatic into gear, the faintly audible rumble of the RC F’s 5.0-liter V-8 mumbled at a lower tone. Our entourage of journalists was off to conquer a two-hour drive before arriving at our destination, Monticello Motor Club.

My recent drive around the Monticello Motor Club in the 2015 Lexus RC still has me pondering all the possibilities Lexus could throw at its new two-door coupe. TopSpeed has already reported Lexus’ hints at a four-door version of the car, but then the idea struck about a drop-top version. It makes perfect sense, so just follow along.

See, the RC’s chassis is a mishmash of sorts. It’s front clip, engine cradle, and suspension supports are borrowed from the GS sedan . The rear section is from the new IS sedan. But the middle section is pulled off the aging IS C, Lexus’ 2+2 hardtop convertible. Now with that stiff center section acting as the RC’s foundation, plus the serious bracing Lexus put in the chassis’ middle section, it seems completely possible for the RC to get a convertible version.

The idea becomes even more plausible when considering Lexus could replace the old IS C convertible with the RC Convertible. Development and engineering costs would be minimal as the majority of the work should already be done. Lexus’ customer base then gets a new hardtop convertible that could come available with the F Sport and track-ready F packages. That puts Lexus in line to compete with the BMW M4 Convertible and Audi RS 5 Cabriolet.

The RC Convertible would span all trim and powertrain levels, so expect the base RC 350 to get the topless treatment too — just as our rendering shows. Expect the RC Convertible to debut for the 2016 model year if the project gets the go-ahead.

Click past the jump to read more about the future Lexus RC.


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