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Posted on by Christian Moe +  

Happy Thursday, everybody. We made it to the incredible milestone of five (5!) episodes. It may not seem like much, but it is our first step towards world Podcast domination. Also, for reasons that I can’t really explain, we spend a lot of time at multiple points in the podcast discussing the Ford Bronco. So, yeah.

In this week’s episode, Mark, Justin and myself find ourselves rambling about the Hyundai Equus , Mistubishi Lancer GT and the Ford Flex Ecoboost in the Weekly Wheels segment.

For the big news stories of the week, we cover the shenanigans that transpired over April Fool’s Day , and slowly built into a horsepower war. We begin with the BoldRide created Jeep rally hatchback , then we move to the deliciously powerful rumor of a Jaguar F-Type Club Sport . Moving the horsepower even higher, we talk about the rumored 700-horsepower SRT Challenger Hellcat , and finish the insanity with some talk of the 2,000-horsepower Trion Nemesis . There is a bit of talk about the current legal dustup with Ferrari and fan’s Facebook page, as well.

TopSpeed Podcast Episode 005 - "Apparently we like the Ford Bronco"

For the Q&A segment, we field a pair of great questions from you guys. The first involves our thoughts on the success of super-cheap superminis, like the Dacia, and if we think they would work in the states. Our second question involves our ability to maintain a critical viewpoint when dealing with cars or brands that we hold a certain loyalty to.

Both great questions that lead to some interesting discussion.

We finish with the new Own, Drive, Burn segment where we argue over the merits of the classic mud-slingers of the International Scout, Jeep Wrangler and Ford Bronco.

Make sure to keep all those comments, questions and suggestions coming. You can hit us up here in the comments, reach us on Twitter using our new podcast account @TopSpeedPodcast or you can reach us via email: Podcast@TopSpeed.com

Thanks for hanging with us for five episodes, everyone!! See you next Thursday.

Hosts: Christian Moe, Justin Cupler, Mark McNabb
Weekly Wheels: Ford Flex, Mitsubishi Lancer GT , Hyundai Equus

Posted on by Christian Moe +  

We knew it was inevitably going to happen, but now Mitsubishi has confirmed to NJP.jp that the Lancer Evo X is dead. We don’t mean that the Evo X is set to be replaced by the Evo XI next year, either. Rather, Mitsubishi is killing off the model all together to focus its efforts on its hybrid and fuel-efficient offerings.

It isn’t much of a surprise, considering generally slow sales for the brand, and having a low volume model such as the Evo is not exactly a smart financial decision. The small Japanese makers are having a hard timing of making in the states and Mitsubishi’s closest competitor, Suzuki has already closed up shop and left.

It may seem slightly sudden for fans of the nameplate after the recent announcement of the special FQ-440 MR , but remember that is a small production run model for the UK only.

There is still hope for this venerable nameplate to return sometime in the couple of years as a hybrid sports car, but we don’t expect to see that arrive until 2017 or so. Still, as sad as it is to see the incredible rally-bred Evo drive of into the sunset, if it will give Mitsubishi the time and resources to make an even faster and more fuel efficient Evo XI. If you are afraid that hybrid technology will numb the Lancer Evo’s senses, let me remind you that the fastest cars from Ferrari , Porsche , and McLaren are all hybrid machines.

Bring it on, Mitsubishi.

Click past the jump to read more about the Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X.

Source: NJP.jp

During a recent trip to a Miami-area Porsche dealership, TopSpeed founder Philippe Daix found himself face to face with five 911 GT3s as they patiently await an engine swap. Porsche is reportedly testing a revised version of the GT3’s 3.8-liter, flat-six engine, but until the engine is ready and shipped to dealers, these brand-new cars sit covered in a layer of dust, blocked by other vehicles within the bowels of the dealer’s service department.

Porsche made the unprecedented move in February of notifying owners to stop driving their GT3s and ordered dealers to stop selling them until repairs are made. The announcement came after two seemingly perfect GT3s burst into flames as they meandered down European roads earlier this year.

The German automaker’s investigation into the fires revealed two piston rod screws became loose, causing all sorts of mayhem and catastrophe within the engine block. Thankfully, no accidents or injuries resulted from the fires, but the incidents were enough for Porsche to recall all 785 of the 2014 911 GT3 s produces. Until the cars are fixed, current GT3 owners have replacement Porsche vehicles.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Porsche 911 GT3.

Cue the evil laugh. Commence the soul-piercing glare. Engage the 550-horsepower, 5.0-liter, supercharged V-8. To a select few, being bad is so seductively good – especially if the chariot of choice is the all-new Jaguar F-Type R Coupe. To commemorate such dubious and markedly British characters, Jaguar has produced a series of short videos based on its recent Super Bowl ad, It’s Good to be Bad.

Jaguar’s longest video of the series is the one above, and features British actor Tom Hiddleston. Dressed to the hilt in a suit likely more expensive than the Jag’s first months payment, Hiddleston conveys just how a villain should carry oneself; especially whilst piloting an F-Type.

The series of videos cover everything from the active exhaust pipes and selectable dynamic mode to the F-Type’s interior accoutrements and outward appearance. They all feature a heavy dose of V-8 growl and close in shots of the notable features. Of course, the voiceover completes each video’s feel with Hiddleston’s suave British accent.

Holistically, I’m impressed to see Jaguar pour so much focus and money into advertising the F-Type. It’s surely worthy of the attention and it’s a nice change from the previous status quo. On sale this May, the F-Type Coupe starts at $65,000 and rises to over $100K for the F-Type R.

Now if I could only find a briefcase full of $100 bills to take to the Jaguar dealership…

Click past the jump to see all Jaguar’s villainous videos

Posted on by Ciprian Florea +  

When it comes to modern muscle cars , the Dodge Challenger is anything but a best-seller compared to its Ford and Chevrolet rivals. Although it had a spectacular sales increase of more than 19 percent in 2013, the Chrysler-built pony spent the entire year looking at Mustang and Camaro taillights, settling for a U.S. market share of 24.6 percent.

The Challenger is already in its seventh production year, and very little has changed since introduction in 2008. That being said, the coupe is in dire need of an update, and that 2015 model year facelift can’t come soon enough. But in spite of its dated looks and technology, Challenger aficionados still stand firm behind their muscle. Especially when it comes to special edition models.

You might recall that the 2014 Dodge Challenger R/T Shaker , which marked the reintroduction of the iconic, 1970s shaker hood, went on sale with much fanfare, as Chrysler dealers flocked to order no less than 2,000 units in four days. Now, Dodge reports that yet another version of the 2014 Challenger was launched with great success. We’re talking about the limited-edition Mopar ’14 Challenger , which sold out in the blink of an eye.

Sure, this special, Hemi-powered bullet will be built in only 100 units, but mind you, all of them were accounted for in less than 24 hours after being made available to U.S. dealers.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Dodge Challenger Mopar Edition.

Generally the S-Class finds itself more at home cursing along the Autobahn at high speeds or taking a leisurely drive along some posh suburban California road while the occupants enjoy the comforts afforded within. However, in this spy video above, Mercedes engineers have lit the afterburners in that upcoming S500 Coupe.

Still covered in camouflage, the S-Class Coupe squeals its way around hard turns along the Nürburgring in Germany. Power comes from a 4.6-liter twin-turbocharged V-8 making 455 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque, the car accels quickly after exiting each turn. From the level of protest heard from the tires, it seems Mercedes still intends the S-Class Coupe to be a boulevard cruiser rather than a track star champ.

Conversely, The upcoming S63 AMG makes its short appearance midway through the video as well (1:34). With its suspension tuned, sticker tires in place, and a more powerful engine, the S63 AMG is the proper gentleman’s speed racer. Powering that car will be a 5.5-liter twin-turbo V-8 making roughly 577 horsepower and a massive 664 pound-feet of torque. The car will likely be offered in both RWD and 4Matic AWD, with the latter making sprints to 62 mph in 3.9 seconds.

It is a little odd the S500 still wears its camo while the S63 AMG bears it all since the S500 has already been officially debuted at Geneva while the AMG isn’t due until the New York Auto Show, though the official images have already been released. We just count ourselves lucky while enjoying the spy video.

Posted on by Ciprian Florea +  

As spring kicks in each year, Jeep and Mopar are gearing up for the annual Easter Jeep Safari in Moab, Utah, by creating some of the greatest off-roaders which, unfortunately, we can’t buy.

Last year, for instance, the Chrysler -owned brands have come up with the extreme Wrangler Sand Trooper II perched on 40-inch bead-lock wheels, the lightweight Wrangler Stitch , and the production-friendly Grand Cherokee Trailhawk II Concept .

For 2014, Jeep and Mopar are storming Utah highly-anticipated event with another half-dozen of unique climbing-capable machines. Among them, visitors will be able to get up close and personal with a more extreme take on the redesigned 2014 Jeep Cherokee.

Dubbed Cherokee Dakar, the crossover concept pays tribute to the grueling African (err, South American) safari rally with its off-road-spec suspension, massive sand-digging tires and flared wheel arches. From the teaser, it appears that the dark-grey body is complemented by a red window trim, while the two-tone rims benefit from the same contrasting hues. Additionally, the concept will get to keep the Cherokee’s standard red tow hooks.

There are no clues as to what might be hiding under the hood, but we’re not hoping for more than a 3.2-liter Pentastar V-6. Not that we wouldn’t love to see a Hemi V-8 in there, but the Cherokee’s bay is not roomy enough for a 6.4-liter mill

Updated 04/10/2014: Jeep unveiled the official details on the new Cherokee Dakar concept set to be unveiled on April 12 at the Jeep Easter Safari.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Jeep Cherokee Dakar.

Posted on by Christian Moe +  

Do you own an iOS or Android device and want a really fun way to kill a few hours of time? Check out the new 650S Design Studio app from McLaren . The app is an easy to use, portable version of an online car configuration tool, but McLaren have added some extra touches to make it special.

Start with picking your car, Spider or Coupe , and then choose your favorite color, wheels and options to create the perfect personalized supercar. Once you finish choosing your options, the fun really begins.

The app has the ability to insert your newly designed 650S into any picture on your device. Take a picture of your garage, and you instantly get to see what it would look like to park a new McLaren at your own house. Make your Facebook friends jealous by putting the new 650S casually into your vacation photos.

To make sure things look as real possible, McLaren claims the app will alter things like shading and reflections to make the photos look as real as possible.

If you would prefer to photobomb yourself with the 12C or the P1 , you are out of luck. The app only features the newly announced 650S, but I see no reason why an app update later couldn’t add other cars.

I wonder if I can put the 650S into my wedding photos to make it look like I am marrying a car...

You can pick up the app for Android ’HERE->https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.mclaren.McLaren650S]. or you can grab the iPad/iPhone app HERE

Editor’s Note: I personally tried the app on Android (my results above), and it works very well!

Click past the jump to read more about the McLaren 650S Coupe and Spider.

Posted on by Ciprian Florea +  

Few people can really afford a supercar like the McLaren P1 , which is one of the reasons why the British manufacturer decided to build only 375 of them.

Sure, the $1.15-million hybrid sold out in a matter of months, a hint that McLaren could’ve produced more, but that doesn’t change anything — the P1 just wasn’t aimed at the average Joe.

Most of us will never get to drive McLaren’s ultimate hypercar, which is bound to make its way onto our long list of forbidden, outrageous vehicles that already includes the Bugatti Veyron and the Ferrari LaFerrari . Sounds pretty depressing, huh?

Well, not exactly. The fact that we’re not able to toss money around when it comes to utterly expensive cars shouldn’t stop us from enjoying and celebrating the supercar phenomenon. Who knows, maybe at some point we’ll be lucky enough to get a shotgun ride in a P1.

But until that happens, we’re here to twist the knife in your wounds with nearly three minutes of POV footage. The clip was shot at the Bruntingthorpe Aerodrome in the United Kingdom, during a supercar meet, and shows an orange P1 flexing its muscles on a straight line up to 175 miles per hour.

Need more salt on that wound? Then you should know that the lucky passenger is an attendee that got the ride of his life after winning a charity donation event. So start donating folks!

Posted on by Ciprian Florea +  

Scheduled to be unveiled sometime in the third quarter of the year, the 2015 Smart ForTwo is almost ready to go into production, as company engineers are conducting final road tests in different environments. Although our spy photographers have spotted the new tiny vehicle in all shapes and sizes, and stretching their legs in both warm weather and near-freezing conditionss, the ForTwo’s design is still a mystery. However, with the brand new Renault Twingo out in the open, we can imagine what the next Smart will bring styling-wise.

Why should we look at the Twingo to figure out more about the ForTwo? Well, it’s already common knowledge that the ForTwo and ForFour pair of Smarts have been developed in conjunction with the French car. All three will share a rear-wheel-drive architecture with an engine mounted it the back, while both the Twingo and the ForFour will wear a similar shell.

Because the two share about 70 percent of their components, they will be built at Renault ’s Novo Mesto plant in Slovenia. The ForTwo, which will sport the same body panels as the ForFour minus the rear doors, will continue to be assembled in Hambach, France, the tiny vehicle’s traditional home.

Click past the jump to read more about the new Smart ForTwo.


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