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  Automotive industry news, it feels like nothing of what they say is really important but put it together and you will get the big picture before the others.


The unfortunate and untimely death of Paul Walker put the future of the Fast & Furious franchise in tenuous position, a position that it was only able to move on from just recently. One of the biggest challenges Fast 7 experienced in the wake of Walker’s death was how it would be able to finish a movie when he still had some action scenes to shoot? It took months of discussions, but ultimately, the people behind the Fast franchise came to a decision to use not one of Walker’s brothers, but two of them.

In an announcement it made on its Facebook page, Fast 7 producers have made it known that both Cody and Caleb Walker, are set to be included in the movie to finish Paul’s action scenes. Rumors of a Walker brother stepping in to film Paul’s final scenes have been going swirling since late last year , shortly after his shocking death. At that time, it was Cody that was being talked about as being Paul’s replacement, but now it’s been announced that Cody and Caleb are going to be in the movie.

As far as what producers have in store for Walker’s character, Brian O’Connor, it appears that the character won’t be killed off as previously thought of. Instead, it would be "retired" in the seventh movie.

The death of Paul Walker still leaves a bad taste in our mouth, but knowing that both his brothers will be involved in the movie franchise that defined his career is as good a sign as any to pay respects to the fallen actor.

Click past the jump to see a collection of videos on Paul Walker and to read the official statement regarding the Walker brothers’ inclusion in Fast 7

Source: Yahoo!

Things are getting pretty racy over at Ferrari , as the company has just confirmed plans to build a racetrack-only version of the LaFerrrari hypercar titled the LaFerrari XX and will see big changes with the suspension and aerodynamics setups in the production car.

The breaking news comes way of Antonello Coletta, Ferrari’s head of Sporting Activity Department, at the ongoing Ferrari Racing Days in Sydney, Australia. “Now we are working on the new hypercar for the circuit, the LaFerrari XX,” Coletta admitted to Drive.com. "I hope that the new car will arrive on the circuit in January or February of next year.”

Coletta says Ferrari realizes improving the car’s power will be a difficult challenge as the car already makes an impressive 963 horsepower and 664 pound-feet of torque with its 6.3-liter V-12 engine and two electric motors. Though the power will increase, the biggest changes are said to be within the suspension tuning, tire choice, and aerodynamics.

“It will be completely different the handling, because it’s normal that the handling is different for the circuit and the road, says Coletta. The difference will be the slick tires, the aerodynamics, the electronics, the suspension, the shock absorbers.”

Though the rumors still fly about Ferrari reentering Le Mans , Coletta and the Italian automaker still deny any definite plans. “Now, we stay in F1 … For now Ferrari will not be in Le Mans but we will see, but it is absolutely not sure,” Drive reports Coletta saying. Catching an odd, Le Mans-style, LaFerrari racer testing is only adding fuel to these rumors.

The track-only LaFerrari XX follows in the footsteps already laid by the Enzo -based FXX and 599 XX. The car is expected to launch in 2015 for a price even larger than the production LaFerrari’s $1.8 million asking price.

Click past the jump to read about the LaFerrari EVOXX that we envisioned

Source: Drive
Posted on by Ciprian Florea +  

About two weeks ago. we reported about McLaren ’s decision to pause 12C production to focus on the brand new 650S. Well, it appears that the temporary halt has just become permanent, with the British company revealing that the three-year-old 12C will no longer be built.

The move comes at no surprise, as the newly-launched 650S has proven to be quite popular with customers. Although it’s more expensive than the 12C, the new supercar will keep McLaren busy with an order bank that spans over at least six months.

Although it has stopped producing and taking orders for the MP4-12C , McLaren will continue to work on improvements for the said model. Starting June, 12C drivers will benefit from a free Technology Upgrade that includes a software update and an improved IRIS system.

First up is a new Active Aero software which will enable the car’s Airbrake to detect different driving scenarios and thus improve stability. The second upgrade included in the package is a Drag Reduction System (DRS) mode. Created to enhance high-speed aerodynamics, the DRS mode lowers the rear wing when the 12C is driven at full throttle in a straight line.

Lastly, an improved Android-based IRIS infotainment system will also come with the Technology Upgrade.

In addition, McLaren promises that the reversing camera and the DAB radio introduced on the 650S will be offered to 12C owners at "a special price."

Click past the jump to read more about McLaren MP4-12C.

To say Tesla is the world’s leading automotive start-up of the last 90 years would be a gross understatement. The company has done extremely well for itself, considering its mere 10-year existence and two-model lineup. Now solely producing its second product — the Model S — Tesla is on the forefront of all-electric car design and manufacturing. The Silicon Valley company can pin the majority of its success on the shoulders of its founder and CEO, Elon Musk.

CBS 60 Minutes correspondent Scott Pelley recently sat down with Musk for an interview about Tesla. “Well, I didn’t really think Tesla would be successful,” Musk answered regarding how he could start a car company and be successful at it. “I thought we would most likely fail. But I thought that we at least could address the false perception that people have that an electric car had to be ugly and slow and boring like a golf cart.” That sort of tenacity seems to be a driving force behind Musk’s inability to think small. “If something’s important enough you should try. Even if you [think] the probable outcome is failure.”

The Model S has shown an electric car can be successful inside the U.S. It’s so successful, in fact, Tesla is having a hard time keeping up with demand, turning out 600 cars each week, despite a few fiery setbacks. Musk is even planning a $5 billion factory to be built within the U.S. for constructing enormous amounts of lithium-ion batteries. With the eventual lowered cost of battery production, Tesla’s next major goal is producing an all-electric car costing roughly $35,000, making the company and its technology open to a far greater number of consumers.

Click past the jump for more info on Elon Musk’s other projects


As one of the world’s most esteemed brands, Ferrari is no stranger to getting involved with weird lawsuits. But this time, the Maranello-based company has found itself in a humdinger of a legal battle with a 21-year-old amateur racer. The issue at hand? Control of a Ferrari fan page on Facebook.

According to Bloomberg, 21-year-old Sammy Wasem and his father Olivier have filed a criminal complaint against Ferrari SpA over accusations that the latter engaged in copyright infringement on a Ferrari fan page the younger Wasem started when he was 15 years old. Not to be outdone, Ferrari has also taken the steps to sue the Wasems, claiming that on their part, the two misused the company’s trademark to advertise non-Ferrari merchandise on its website, not to mention touting the brand on items like Wasem’s 18th birthday celebration.

This case is peculiar on so many levels, notwithstanding the obvious oddity of a fight involving a Facebook fan page. But it also has far-reaching consequences to a lot more people, largely because of how it can define the line that crosses violating somebody’s freedom of expression on social media.

As far as Ferrari is concerned, the issue it has is with people who, according to spokesman Stefano Lai, "try to use Ferrari’s intellectual property to make money out of it,” an accusation that the company is apparently throwing the direction of the Wasems despite objections by Olivier Wasem that he and his son made no money selling merchandise on the site.

For them, the fan page was merely an expression of Sammy’s love for the Maranello brand, and when it grew to become one of the biggest Ferrari fan pages on Facebook, it caught the attention of Ferrari, who in turn, sent the Wasems an email on March 2009, informing them that it was "taking over formal administration of the fan page".

At first, the Wasems agreed to turn the site into the official fan page for Ferrari, but on the understanding that they would receive financial compensation for their efforts in improving the fan page. But the money never came, four years after they lost their administration rights, hence, the civil lawsuit that was filed in February 2013, demanding Ferrari to pay them owed compensation, amounting to around $11 million for 5,500 hours of work.

I have a mild issue with the numbers the kid and his dad are tossing out. First of all, 5,500 hours since the age of 15 means that he spent 17 hours per week working on the Facebook page. I find that a little outlandish. Secondly, doing the math on the amount they are suing for and the amount of time spent on the site (per their claims) that amounts out to $2,000 per hour... Yeah, that’s a little much, folks.

As it stands, the case is now in the hands of a Geneva prosecutor who, in turn, will determine what kind of action is going to be taken next.

Click past the jump to read about Ferrari’s latest model: the California T

Source: Bloomberg

The SRT Viper’s well-chronicled sales struggles have been well documented in the media these days. While company boss Ralph Giles continues to put on a brave — and maybe even defiant — face, today’s news involving Chrysler’s decision to shut down production of the Viper because of lagging sales is something even Giles doesn’t have any excuse for.

The company made the announcement in a statement, essentially confirming rumors that it was shutting down its Conner Avenue Assembly Plant from April 14th to to June 23rd. That’s two months of the Viper’s production remaining idle, but given how much supply it still has in its inventory — 756 unsold on March 1 — there was no need for the company to keep building more Vipers .

The Viper’s struggles in sales are a little surprising, considering the hype and fanfare the sports car received when it made its return a few years ago. Some people might point to the season as a reason for lagging sales, but even that doesn’t fully explain how the Viper hasn’t been universally lauded the same way as the new Chevrolet Corvette Stingray .

Even with its limited production, wouldn’t consumers be tripping over themselves to get a Viper if it were in such a high demand? The truth its, demand for the sports car isn’t as high as SRT would’ve hoped.

We are starting to wonder if this lack of interest may result in a very short lifespan for the new SRT Viper... Let us know what you think in the comments section.

Click past the jump to read more about the SRT Viper.

Posted on by Simona  

Ultra-luxury brands beware, another one of your comrades is falling down the shame spiral and building a - gasp - SUV! Sure that’s a little dramatic, but so are all of the people that are scoffing at the fact that Bentley has now confirmed a new SUV scheduled to hit their lineup sometime in 2015. If everyone remembers correctly, these are the same people that were horrified that Porsche decided to build the Cayenne and look how well that turned out for them.

Now, with a 37-percent increase in sales in 2011 (to 7,003 vehicles sold), Bentley is looking to double this number by the time this new SUV, rumored to have the name "Falcon" — comes out by making it "the world’s most luxurious 4x4" SUV and targeting growing SUV markets like the U.S. and China. The "luxurious" title will also match the price; rumors point to the starting price for this future SUV coming in at $271,000, making the $48,200 starting price of the Porsche Cayenne look like it belongs on a Kia Sportage .

So, what constitutes the jumbo price tag? Other than the supposedly tremendous amount of luxury built into the future SUV, rumors are swirling that a V-8 twin-turbocharged engine would be the standard powerplant and a W-12 engine is a possible option.

Bentley is taking a big step with its improving sales by giving an SUV a chance to flourish. Does the world need a strong competitor for the Porsche Cayenne? Probably not, but that doesn’t mean that high-end customers with deep pockets won’t be writing out checks for a chance to wallow in the luxurious nature promised by Bentley.

Updated 3/19/2014: Bentley just released the first teaser image of its new SUV, which is rumored to be called the Falcon. You can see the image after the jump.


We’ve been keeping a close eye on the roasting Porsche GT3 debacle unfolding over the last month or so with little information to go on. However, Porsche has unofficially announced the findings from its investigation and the company’s apparent remedy to the conundrum. Porsche will be replacing every 2014 GT3’s 3.8-liter engine.

A GT3 owner posted a letter from Porsche on an owner forum explaining the issue and Porsche’s plan to rectify it. According to the letter, damage is caused by “loosened piston rod screw connection which damaged the crankcase,” in the case of at least two GT3s. The letter continues saying a new screw connection is currently being tested.

In our estimation from the statement above, the 3.8-liter flax six threw a rod that damaged the crankcase and resulted in a fire. Perhaps shrapnel from the exploding block ripped through a fuel line, resulting in the blaze seen in the picture above.

When Porsche concludes the updated hardware will work, “we will be installing new engines with optimized piston rod screw connections in all 2014 Porsche 911 GT3 vehicles.” The letter goes on to say the Porsche will begin scheduling services and owners will be getting more information within the next three weeks.

Stay tuned to TopSpeed for any breaking news on this story.

Click past the jump to read Porsche’s letter and more about the Porsche 911 GT3 and to read the letter from Porsche.

Source: Rennlist

Ever since Jeep unveiled the new 2015 Renegade at the Geneva Motor Show , the world has gobbled up every bit of information about the new crossover . Small, practical, useful, fun, and sporty — Chrysler’s newest Jeep has all the same Jeep ingredients we’re used to, but has packaged it in a very unique way.

Besides being a unique vehicle in the Jeep lineup, the Renegade is also set to be one of Jeep’s most popular. Built in Italy in cohorts with Fiat , the Renegade will be sold globally. Its small size, fuel-efficient lineup of engines, and four-wheel-drive systems will help it conquer the competition.

We’ve already told you about the all-new Renegade here , but now we’re bringing you a condensed version – a top 10 list of notable features Chrysler hopes will put the Renegade on top.

Click past the jump for an overview of the 2015 Jeep Renegade

Chevrolet Corvette Z06

Get those checkbooks ready because the first production 2015 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 is headed to Barrett Jackson. For everyone who was pining for the return of the Corvette Z06, your wish was granted when Chevrolet officially unveiled the sports car it hailed as the "most track-capable Corvette ever, designed to deliver supercar levels of performance through unique powertrain, chassis and aerodynamic features".

But if you’re interested in new Corvette Z06, you’re going to need to pony up a significant amour of money because the first production Corvette Z06 — yep, the one with VIN 001 — is headed to the Barrett Jackson auction in Palm Beach, Florida from April 11th through the 13th.

This isn’t the first time that Chevrolet has sent first production models to the auction block, including the first production 2014 Corvette Stingray , which NASCAR team owner and Corvette collector Richard Hendrick scooped up for $1 million.

Not to discourage anybody who doesn’t have that kind of budget, but that’s just the market these days for these first production Corvettes. And with this one being the long-awaited Z06, there’s a good chance that $1 million turns out to be a conservative estimate.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Corvette Z06.


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