Okay folks, we’ve all been awaiting for this day since the moment we found out that the Aston Martin DBS was being discontinued and the Vanquish would swoop in to takes its place. Well, the wait is now over, as we were at its Miami Auto Show unveiling and got plenty of images to pass onto you.
When Aston Martin pulled the sheet back on the tangible version of the Vanquish, we were amazed by a stunning light blue color that wouldn’t quite look right on any other model. The computer generated images and the spy shots that we all saw just didn’t quite do this beauty the justice it deserves. Its silk roofline, highlighted by a black-tinted roof gives the air a rather scenic route on its way over the top of this sexy Aston.
One of the most stunning parts of this new model is by far the fender heat extractors. These are pretty much standard on every Aston Martin, but these ones are a little different. On the Vanquish, Aston stretched the chrome strikethrough on the center of the extractors back the forward most end of the door, then a raised bodyline almost creates an extension to the end of the chrome strikethrough. Truthfully, the images do it so much more justice than we could ever put into words.
Don’t let our obsession with the heat extractors take away from the rest of the Vanquish’s stunning body. Its hood features a pair of ridges that start near the center of the hood and shoot outward as you approach the shallow-raked windscreen. Underneath this sharp hood lies the beast that makes this car a true Aston Martin, and that is its 565-horsepower, 6.0-liter V-12 engine that is also good for 457 pound-feet of twist. Unfortunately, Aston Martin didn’t crank this beast up for us, but we’ll hear it in due time. Full story
We have speculated, spied, and even rendered the C7 Corvette as we anxiously awaited any news on its upcoming release. Well, the speculation will officially be over in less than three months, as Chevrolet has just announced that it will officially unveil the C7 Corvette on January 13, 2013.
GM also let us know that the Corvette will be a “world-challenging sports car with design, refinement, efficiency and driver engagement that is second to none.” We also learned in GM’s presser that the C7 Corvette will be nearly 100 percent new, as it will use only two components from the C6 generation: the cabin air filter and rear latch for the removable top. That gets us extremely excited, as a fear of ours is a body overhaul but the same old driveline and chassis under the skin. Maybe the rumors of a 5.5-liter V-8 powerplant are true...
With these all-new components also comes a brand new Crossed Flags logo. GM was actually kind enough to provide us with an image of the new Crossed Flags logo (pictured above) and it is definitely far more modern and aggressive than any one before it. According to GM, there were over 100 different prototypes for the new emblem reviewed before executives finally decided on this one.
It seems as if GM is just as excited about this upcoming release, as it has launched a website – www.one13thirteen.com – dedicated to tracking all of the C7 `Vette release details over the next few months. In fact, the first video on the site unlocks on November 15th. You can also track all of the release info at the Corvette’s Facebook page.
Chevy also announced that we will see the C7.R Corvette running in the 2014 ALMS. So, the question now is what in the world does GM have up its sleeve? We’ll keep close tabs on every bit of info that GM releases.
Click past the jump to read GM’s full press release and see a video on the Crossed Flags’ evolution.
With the Gallardo lineup winding into its final production years, everyone is antsy to get a look at the all-new Cabrera. With Lamborghini being, well, Lamborghini, it tends to play its cards very close to its chest and only the information it wants out gets out – unlike GM, which has many leaky valves.
Fortunately for us, Lamborghini has been more giving than usual, as it has released just enough information about the Cabrera to keep us interested. So far we know that Lamborghini is calling the Cabrera’s design a “revolution not an evolution,” so we can assume that the its body will be significantly different than the Gallardo. As you can see from our rendering, we anticipate it to take some of the Sesto Elemento’s styling cues.
We have also learned that the Cabrera will be a much simpler lineup than the Gallardo, so we won’t see the laundry list of available options, as we do on the current Gallardo. We also know that the Cabrera will feature the same 5.2-liter V-10 as the Gallardo and will likely boast a supercharger to pump it up to 600, or more, horsepower.
The Cabrera will carry over the same 6-speed automated manual transmission as the Gallardo. The traditional manual transmission was axed as a possibility recently. We have also heard that it will definitely come in rear-wheel drive and all-wheel drive is still on the table.
Add in the fact that is will feature carbon fiber body panels to drop its weight by 66 lbs and you will get a supercar that hits 60 mph in only 3.4 seconds – roughly 0.2 seconds quicker than the base Gallardo – and a 203 mph top speed.
We’ll keep an eye out for more information to make its way onto the wire, but given the history of Lamborghini, we likely have to wait until it is good and ready to drop the info.
After several days of teasing us with what looked to be an all-new Gallardo, Lamborghini has decided to lift the veil off of this beast and give us a look at it. This all-new Lambo, dubbed the Gallardo LP 560-4, made its debut in Paris alongside its slightly upgraded counterpart, the Gallardo 570-4 Edizione Technica.
Overall, the Gallardo’s body will remain intact from last year’s model, but Lambo will be making mild additions to the already sexy body. The real question remains whether Lamborghini actually improved upon its entry-level – if you can really call any Lamborghini an “entry-level car – supercar’s already popular appearance, or were these changes simply unnecessary and counterproductive.
Now with all of the information in hand, we can offer you our full review of this all-new Gallardo and allow you to make an educated decision on it.
Click past the jump to read our full review. Full story
The details on the upcoming SRT Barracuda are still very scarce and we aren’t expecting to hear more until sometime in late 2013, at the earliest. There are, of course, the occasional leaks and the inadvertent video evidence of its existence, but nothing too concrete. We all have our assumptions, given the nature of the SRT line, that the SRT Barracuda will be a hulking V-8 powered machine set to rip the fender wells from future 4-cylinder Mustangs and Camaros.
Well, let’s not get ahead of ourselves here. The SRT lineup is a growing brand in itself, much like the Ram lineup. Plus, with Chrysler now being in bed with Fiat, we all know that Chrysler likely won’t build any other cars that don’t have a Fiat relative somewhere. Not to mention that Fiat is in need of a newer rear-wheel-drive platform. This brings us to our point that the SRT `Cuda very well may be a full-line vehicle. By that, we mean one that has a 4-cylinder, V-6 and multiple V-8 options.
According to reports, the SRT Barracuda should come in at a full eight inches shorter than the Challenger it will replace, giving it an optimal size for Fiat to use. With this shorter body, the `Cuda is also set to drop a few hundred pounds, which will make it more even with the Mustang and Camaro that the Challenger is simply monstrous compared to.
Now add in the fact that the EU standards and new CAFÉ regulations are going to force SRT to up its mpg and lower its emissions and you can see exactly why the Barracuda may have more than just a bulky V-8 engine powering it. We will likely see a boosted 4- or 6-cylinder engine gracing the bottom end of the SRT Barracuda range with your typical array of 5.7- and 6.4-liters playing at the top. Without that, all that SRT has to offer up to the CAFÉ standards is the gas-guzzling SRT Viper, and that simply won’t do. Nor will it work for the EU standards that Fiat has to live up to.
We’ll keep an ear out for any more information that we can dig up.
After the Del Sol failed to grab buyers’ attention and the S2000 pretty much fizzled into nothingness after nine model years, Honda shelved its roadster-building practices for a few years. That being said, in a speech today, Honda’s CEO, Takanobu Ito, has announced that the automaker will again dive into the roadster-building realm, just not as deep as it was before.
According to his statements, Honda will release a new roaster in 2014, but there are two problems here. Problem No. 1, this roadster will only be available in the Japanese market, making us wonder if an S2000 successor will ever show up. Problem No. 2 is the fact that this new roadster will be based on one of the Honda’s “mini-vehicle” models. In other words, we are looking at something along the lines of a Geo Metro LSi convertible – if you even remember that slouch – not an S2000 successor.
According to Ito, this new roadster will feature “strong vehicle dynamics,” which sounds promising, but could ultimately be the typical automotive lip service. From what this sounds like, Honda is planning to actually produce a version of the EV-STER Concept that has been rumored to hit 60 mph in just 5 seconds and have a total electric range of 100 miles – okay, so maybe it’s a little cooler than the Metro LSi, but still not an S2000 replacement.
Given Honda’s tendency to let models hover in Asia for a while before releasing them worldwide, we anticipate that this new roadster will make its way to the U.S. after about two or three successful years. If it fails in the Japanese market, Honda will simply fold it up and act like it never happened.
Now for the big question; what will Honda name this new roadster? Will it bring back the much maligned Del Sol name or maybe finally cater to the purists that want the CRX name back so badly that they can taste it? We doubt that either name will make a comeback, but it would be kind of cool to see the CRX name again. The Del Sol, eh, not so much…
Click past the jump to read the full summary of the speech.
One of the many advantages of being in Toyota’s home country of Japan are the number of models the automaker builds exclusively to their homeland. The Toyota Mark X, which we first saw in concept guise a few years ago, is one of them.
Unlike any model Toyota produces for the international market, the Mark X is exclusive to the Japanese market. More importantly, the 2013 model of the car gets a facelift, making it even more distinguishable than its past incarnations.
For one, the front grille of the car is probably the only one amongst Toyota’s many models to have a huge "X" adorning it. In addition, the car also gets LED infused headlights, bulging fenders, a trunk-mounted rear spoiler, and wraparound taillights that resemble the Toyota Camry. Inside, the Mark X also gets plenty of new equipment and features, particularly the higher trim Premium and 350 G’s models that both have leather upholstery, heated front seats, stainless steel door sill plates, and a comprehensive infotainment system that includes GPS navigation, a TV tuner, and 12 speakers.
As far as performance goes, the Mark X comes with two powertrain options with the first being a 2.5-liter V6 engine that produces 200 horsepower and 179 lb/ft of torque. Meanwhile, a more powerful 3.5-liter V6 engine is also being offered with 314 horsepower and 280 lb/ft of torque.
In case you’re interested - and you live in Japan - the 2013 Mark X retails for 2.4 million yen, which is around $30,500 based on current exchange rates.
There have been rumors circulating that Volkswagen AG is interested in Proton, which includes the Lotus debacle, as either minority owners or a controlling stake. But if VW’s labor union officials have any say, this will not take place. Bend Osterloh let the Handelsblatt know that the labor union will not support VW acquiring Proton, Lotus, or any other brand.
Osterloh was quoted saying “We already have 12 brands and we first have to stabilize the group.” Osterloh also agrees that VW needs to increase its presence in Southwest Asia, but the labor union still won’t support VW in this potential purchase.
Osterloh holds a seat on the supervisory board, so he has a little pull in the company, but not that much pull. VW is looking to overtake GM as the world’s largest auto manufacturer by 2018 and we doubt a puny labor union will stop VW. Even the taxman couldn’t put the brakes on VW’s expansion when it purchased, err, restructured Porsche.
We are pretty sure that VW will own at least a portion of Proton before the end of 2013, it just has to figure out how to let its labor union know that it can either come along for the ride or step aside. This should be a pretty interesting one, as we all know exactly how well auto unions and automakers play together, so we may be in for a pretty big power struggle.
Grab the popcorn... We’ll keep you updated.
Volkswagen is making it their personal goal to compete with just about every single auto manufacturer in the world, be it from acquiring the Porsche brand or making their own car to compete with someone. The latest rumor afloat in the automotive realm is the BMW X6 Competitor, the Volkswagen Touareg CC.
The information on this new crossover SUV is very scarce, but based on our knowledge, we were able to come up with a rendering of what we think the Touareg CC will look like. One thing that we are fairly certain of is that the Touareg CC will be modeled after the Cross Coupe Concept we saw in Geneva, boasting an aggressive-looking front end with an array of sharp body lines and a stylish chrome grille up front. On the rear, you’ll get exaggerated rear fender wells and arches, semi-oval taillights, and a raked rear hatch. You also get a pair of oval exhaust exits directly under the rear bumper.
Down the side of the Touareg CC, you have a profile that looks more like a coupe, almost like the profile that Nissan gave to the Juke. Unlike the Juke, however, you will have an exposed rear door handle, giving away its status as a 4-door model.
Click past the jump to read more. Full story
Regardless of how odd it may look to have a bulky crossover SUV, like the MKT, replacing the equally bulky, yet outdated, Town Car sedan in Lincoln’s lineup, you can’t resist saying that it just might work. It’s equally luxurious as the Town Car and far larger, allowing passengers to stretch out a little more. One complaint about the Town Car that has somewhat carried over to the MKT is the cost to fuel it.
The last Town Car got a wallet-draining 16 mpg city and 24 mpg highway and the MKT was not much better at 16 to 17 mpg city and 23 to 25 mpg highway, depending on options. Well, for fleets later on in the 2013 model year, Lincoln is addressing this concern by offering a 4-cylinder engine – that’s right, a 4-cylinder Lincoln...
This variant will not be made available directly to the public, as it will be a fleet-only model. It will boast a 2.0-liter EcoBoost engine that pumps out 235 ponies and 260 pound-feet of torque. That’s a 65-horsepower drop from the now-standard V-6 engine, but only a 15 pound-feet decrease in torque. Where the EcoBoost engine comes into play is the fact that it gets 20 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway, that’s a 3 to 4 and 3 to 5 mpg increase, respectively.
It achieves these increases by not only offering two fewer cylinders to fuel, but also that it is only available in front-wheel drive. The lack of an AWD variant may seem like an issue to many non-fleet, but look at any fleet of Town Cars and you’ll find out that they are all rear-wheel drive, so that’s not a concern to fleet owners.
The Lincoln MKT Town Car Fleet is expected to debut later in 2012 and will come in at a base price of $49,845. There are no details on whether the options list is thinned out from the current MKT, but we assume it will all remain the same..
We’ll update you with more info as it becomes available.