Renault has big plans for Alpine and apparently, it wants its new sub-brand to follow in the footsteps of another automaker: Porsche .
That much was said by Renault’s Senior Vice President of Corporate Design, Laurens van den Acker, who recently told Piston Heads of the company’s expectations for Alpine.
But before it can get to that level, it needs to have a sports car that can do what the 911 did for Porsche. Lofty goals, but one Renault hopes it can achieve.
"We need to create the 911 of Alpine," van den Acker said. "Then we can do the Panamera and Cayman."
For now, Alpine’s initial plans involve building an entry-level sports car that’s already in the pipeline. Set to be launched in 2016, the car is expected to carry some styling cues from the classic A110 from back in the 60s with an equally possible interpretation on the A110-50 Concept that was launched last year.
No details about the car have been confirmed but there’s word that it will carry a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that produces about 280 horsepower and mates to either a six-speed manual transmission or a dual-clutch EDC automatic. It’s expected to carry a price of about £50,000 ($76,000) per unit.
Click past the jump to read about the Renault Alpine A110-50 Concept
It looks like things have turned sour at Porsche headquarters in the past few months. At the beginning of this year, a former Porsche dealer in India, Precision Cars, filed a criminal case against Porsche and the courts in Jaipur decided that Porsche CEO, Mattias Müller, and eight other Porsche execs could be arrested and issued warrants for said arrests .
Now, Porsche’s is facing other difficulties. Ex-finance chief, Holger Haerter, has been convicted of fraud after a court in Stuttgart, Germany proved he provided falsified information back in 2009 when Porsche tried to take over Volkswagen AG. The court decided that Haerter offered inaccurate information when he was working on refinancing French bank BNP Paribas’ part of a €10 billion loan ($13 billion). The biggest issue at hand is that this false information affected Volkswagen ’s stock price and lead to market manipulation.
Reports say that prosecutors wanted him to serve time in jail, but instead he was fined an unspecified amount. Haerter rejected the charges and argued for an acquittal.
Click past the jump to read more about Volkswagen’s takeover.
Tell us if you’ve seen this song and dance before.
The Rolls-Royce SUV , which has been killed and brought back to life more times than the villain in a slasher movie, appears to be back on the optimistic side of Rolls Royce management.
According to Automobile Mag, the British luxury maker is back to considering the possibility of building the Rolls Royce SUV, provided that the BMW X7 , which has had its own uncertain future, hits the market.
Remember, BMW initially had plans for a super luxury SUV a few years ago but ultimately canned those plans. But now, Automobile Mag points out that the market has changed with the introduction of high-end SUVs, including one from Maserati .
So, speculation of BMW revisiting the X7 might not be as farfetched as they once were. And if Bimmer does push forward with it and builds the SUV, Rolls Royce may finally follow suit and built its own, especially if it has a platform - the X7’s - that it can use.
Also, don’t sleep on how the Maserati Levante does as far as sales are concerned. In the event that it ends up becoming a hit, will Rolls Royce just sit back and let its competitors have the spoils? We think not…
About the only thing we know at this point is that the Rolls Royce SUV is neither alive nor dead. It’s stuck in limbo and for those waiting for it, that’s probably the best place for it to be on at this time.
Click past the jump to read about the Rolls Royce SUV’s potential rival: the Maserati Levante
The Boston Marathon Bombings will go down as one of the most heinous acts of evil us Americans have seen in recent years.
So, it fills us with enormous pride to share with all of you that Supercar Road Trips, a private exotic car club with hundreds of members residing in various regions of the North East, will be hosting the Boston Marathon Exotic Car Rally on June 6.
The objective of the rally is to raise $20,000 for One Fund Boston with 35 exotic cars set to be present to participate in the event. SCRT can’t take back the horrific events of that day, but in its own little way, the organization is trying to help in the rehabilitation efforts for the people of Boston.
This isn’t the first time Supercar Road Trips have banded together for a noteworthy cause. Over the years, the organization has raised funds for numerous local charities, including the Make-A-Wish Foundation of CT, the Brain Injury Organization of NH, the Brain Injury Organization of MA, and the Boys and Girls Club of Newport, RI.
Should you be interested to participate, you can register on the organization’s website. The event is scheduled on June 16th with the rally travelling along the same 26.2-mile route of the Boston Marathon before finishing up on Boylston Street - the site of the deadly bombings.
Hat tip to the fine folks of Supercar Road Trips for organizing the event.
To say that the Porsche 918 Spyder is just another supercar is pretty inaccurate. For one, it’s the most powerful vehicle Porsche has ever built. And another thing: it’s combination of power, speed, fuel economy and low emissions is nearly unrivaled, so much so that even with 918 models priced at over $800,000 a piece, it’s already nearly sold out.
Speaking of sold out, a lot of the customers that paid for the 918 Spyder appear to reside here in the U.S. That’s why Porsche has said that America will receive the biggest allotment of 918 Spyders than any other country with up to 190 models headed our way.
That probably explains why Porsche has taken to great lengths to promote the 918 Spyder in the U.S. Numerous promotional events held in the United States over the past two years, and soon enough, a lot of these actual supercars will be calling the Land of the Free their home.
Click past the jump to read about the Porsche 918 Spyder
Four years after Mercedes decided to discontinue the badge, it looks like the CLK is gearing up for a return.
According to Automobile Magazine, Mercedes is planning for the return of the CLK, which will be based on the next-generation C-Class Coupe. Though that may be surprising to some, it shouldn’t come as a surprise considering that the German market, namely Mercedes’ competitors, are all coming up with new models.
So what’s Mercedes to do, right?
Well, bring back the CLK, apparently.
As far as details about the car is concerned, word has it that it will be designed as a highly emotional driver’s car to go with a full plate of engine options, not the least of which could include numerous turbocharged engines.
The plan for the returning CLK is to slot it direct in competition with the new BMW 4-Series and the upcoming Audi A5 .
While the CLK is expected to undercut the BMW 4 Series and the next Audi A5 with a coupe and convertible version that will both be available with the 4Matic all-wheel-drive system.
Click past the jump to read more about the car that eventually replaced the CLK, the E-Class Coupe
As promised at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show , Aston Martin unveiled today, May 19, 2013 at the 24 Hours of Nürburgring race the exceptional CC100 Speedster Concept - a vehicle specially designed to celebrate the company’s centenary. The CC100 made its debut by lapping the the circuit together with the 1959 DBR1 - the model that inspired. Behind the wheel was Aston Martin CEO Dr Ulrich Bez.
The new CC100 measures 4,5 m (177.16 inches) in length and 2 m (78.74 inches) in width, and, according to the first details offered by the company it features hint at potential future design direction.
The CC100 had both the body and the interior made in carbon fiber and is powered by the latest generation AM11 naturally aspirated V12 gasoline engine mated to a six-speed hydraulically actuated automated sequential manual transmission.
The Speedster can sprint from 0 to 60 mph in a little over four seconds, while the top speed is limited to 180 mph.
Update 5/19/2013: The new CC100 Speedster made its world debut today at the Germany’s ADAC Zurich 24 Hours of Nürburgring race.
click past the jump to read more about the car that inspired the CC100, the DBR1.
Nothing surprises us anymore when it comes to Ferrari . Its relentless pursuit of building some of the world’s most extreme supercars knows no bounds.
And after Autocar reported that there are plans to build an extreme version of its newest hypercar, the LaFerrari , it all seemed par for the course for the Italian automaker.
With the LaFerrari limited to just 499 units, Ferrari wants to build an even more exclusive version of the 963-horsepower hypercar. That’s what Flavio Manzoni, the LaFerrari’s chief designer, told Autocar. Could this possibly be the LaFerrari EVOXX that we spoke of back in March?
“When we were producing the original design proposals for LaFerrari,” said Manzoni, “there was one proposal that I thought was especially beautiful. So we decided to keep that one back for something truly special in the future.”
That "something truly special" appears to be this mystery hypercar that could pack well north of 1,000 horsepower. Talk about its exclusivity should be one of the most important details of this vehicle; Manzoni estimates that no more than 10 could be built with an estimated price tag of anywhere between £3 million ($4.67 million) and £5 million ($7.78 million).
Click past the jump to read about the Ferrari LaFerrari
Automakers are known to come up with contests for their fans that are launched to get the latter more involved in the inner workings of the industry. We’ve seen it before and we’ll see it again.
This time around, it’s Chrysler that has taken that role, opening up a new online contest to encourage its fans to show their customized Chrysler vehicles.
To drive up the interest in the contest, which has been dubbed the Chrysler Custom Challenge, the automaker decided to roll out a number of prizes that are too cool to pass up, including attending the 2013 SEMA Auto Show with their customized Chryslers, as well as a trip to the 2014 NAIAS and a lease of a Chrysler vehicle.
That last part alone would’ve gotten us interested.
As far as entering the competition is concerned, interested participants are invited to visit Chrysler’s Facebook page and submit an image of their customized Chrysler brand vehicle to go with a brief description of the customizations.
All entries will then be subjected to public voting until July 1st at which time three finalists and ten runner-up winners will be selected by a combination of judges’ scores and public votes.
So if any of you have any Chrysler-modded vehicles in your garage, stand proud and show them off. Who knows, you might be rewarded with a trip to SEMA with your baby for your efforts.
Click past the jump to see some of the past Chrysler aftermarket programs that would make for good contenders in this contest
Infiniti’s strong sales performance in recent years has given the automaker reason to look forward to bigger things. And apparently, those bigger things equate to a pair of new vehicles added to its lineup.
Talking to Car and Driver, Infiniti’s new president Johan de Nysschen is looking at the possibility of strengthening its lineup with the addition of a new flagship sedan that de Nysschen describes as an "upscale, very emotional, high-performance luxury sedan." Basically, he’s looking at the possibility of developing a flagship sedan that will follow a different formula and not march to the beat of the industry.
So what does that mean, exactly? That’s the question on everyone’s mind, and understandably so because not a lot of people seem to have a clear grasp on what Infiniti is planning to do. The most ideal comparison as far as a unique flagship sedan that didn’t follow a certain design script is the Porsche Panamera . A fastback model has been thrown around, according to Car and Driver, which seems to lend to the suggestion that if and when Infiniti decides to introduce a new flagship sedan to the world, it’s going to take a different approach on its design.
Equally compelling news is consideration being put on also building a high-performance coupe based on the platform of the aforementioned flagship sedan. That’s a pretty exciting development, considering Infiniti is lacking that kind of poster-worthy sports car that other automakers have.
If there’s a chance to introduce a pair of new and exciting models that will take the Japanese automaker to another level, Infiniti should jump at the chance of building on its sales momentum.
Click past the jump to see a couple of Infiniti concepts that have been introduced in recent years