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sedan

sedan

  A sedan car is a four-door vehicle, with a separate hood covering the engine in the front, and a separate trunk for luggage at the rear — the achetypical 3-box car. However, other variations of the body style exist as well, including two-door and hatchback/fastback models.

As recently as a few years ago, not a lot of people talked about Jaguar as a worthy contender in the full-size luxury sedan segment. But times sure have changed and not only has Jaguar completely reinvented itself, but the likes of BMW and Mercedes are starting to understand why messing with this cat with evil intentions may not be such a good idea anymore.

The 2014 Jaguar XJ is far from the unquestioned best in its segment, but it sure has some pretty sharp claws. A new distinctive design has turned the XJ into a head-turner and when you combine that with a plush and luxurious cabin and a hefty engine under its hood, it’s become apparent that when you’re looking for a loaded luxury sedan, you’re window shopping won’t be complete without taking a long and hard look at the Jaguar XJ.

That’s how far Jaguar has come and there’s no telling the heights it can reach once people start noticing the brand even more.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Jaguar XJ

Given the reputation Suzuki has established in the industry, it wouldn’t be too out there if you thought that the Japanese automaker was capable of rolling out an impressive-looking concept .

Yet there it was at the New Delhi Auto Show where Suzuki, together with its partner, Maruti, unveiled the Concept CIAZ sedan . We don’t know what Suzuki has in store for the concept, other than plans to offer its in markets India and China.

But given what we’re looking at, we really wouldn’t mind seeing the Concept CIAZ, in production guise, make its way to American soil. It’s got promise, that much we can give you. But, with Suzuki pulling out of the American market recently, there is little to no chance that this concept or any other Suzuki will hit the U.S. market any time soon.

Performance numbers will be determined in the future, but from what we’re seeing, we have to give both Suzuki and Maruti some serious props for designing a sedan that looks and feels more than what it’s expected to stand for.

Click past the jump to read more about Maruti Suzuki Concept CIAZ

Things are going very well for Maserati these days. Its Super Bowl commercial “Strike” was a tremendous hit and basically defined the brand’s position to storm the performance/luxury marketplace. Now Maserati is concentrating on a cross promotion with 40-year-old model, Heidi Klum, in the upcoming swimsuit issue of Sports Illustrated.

In a seven-page pictorial feature titled Beyond the Swimsuit, Klum will pose with both the Ghibli S Q4 and the GranTurismo MC Trofeo racecar. The two cars will act as a play on emotion and mindset with Klum presented in a business-woman-like fashion posed along side the Ghibli S Q4, while a juxtaposed set of images will convey her thrill-seeker side as she stands with the GranTurismo MC Trofeo.

This particular issue of Sports Illustrated will be extra special as it celebrates the swimsuit issue’s 50th anniversary and Maserati’s 100th year of production. All the photographs were taken by renowned Italian photographer Francesco Carrozzini and will play a major part in the issue’s celebration. The issue hit newsstands on February 18 and is the largest issue Sports Illustrated has produced since 1989, with a total of 260 pages.

Click past the jump to read more about the new Maserati Ghibli and to read why Maserati likely picked Klum.

Audi Q7

Ever since the upper-management shakeup at Audi last year, details have been murky on when the new A4 sedan and Q7 SUV would make their debuts. Well, as Car & Driver reports, the two popular vehicles have been redirected back into development.

The A4 was originally on track for a debut later this year with its menacing new look, but Audi’s head of R&D, Wolfgang Dürheimer, was unexpectedly “moved to another position within the Volkswagen Volkswagen Group” for apparently ruffling too many feathers in the short 10 months he occupied the position. Now Ulrich Hackenberg, Volkswagen ’s R&D former front man, fills the role. Hackenberg made the call to postpone the A4’s launch in order to rework its styling and fine tune its suspension and assistance systems to ensure everything meets Audi’s ever-increasing expectations. It appears the A4 is rescheduled for the summer of 2015 with a hybrid version coming as well.

An oddly similar story surrounds the Q7. Another Audi executive named Wolfgang — this time Wolfgang Egger, Audi’s chief designer — was canned and replaced by yet another Volkswagen employee, Marc Lichte. Now both new in their positions, Hackenberg and Lichte are reworking the Q7 at the design level. Car & Driver’s insider reports the new design will be softer and less aggressive than Egger’s original plans. This is the Q7’s second delay attributed to its exterior design. There’s no real word on when the Q7 will eventually see production, but at this rate, we’re expecting it to fly and cure cancer.

Click past the jump to read more about the next Audi A4 and Audi Q7.

Source: Car & Driver

It is no surprise that like most other uber-luxury car companies, Bentley is not too keen on changes. It’s buyers like a certain thing and it makes sure to deliver the goods year in and year out, no surprises. Well, Bentley is making the oh-so-rare changeup this year at the Geneva Auto Show , as it will debut the Flying Spur V8 as a complement to the existing Flying Spur W12 .

The V-8 power found under the hood is no stranger to us, as we’ve seen this 4.0-liter in various Bentley models, including the Continental GT . The purpose here is obviously to improve upon the company’s current corporate fuel economy, as the V-8 powerplant adds 2 mpg city, 4 mpg highway and 2 mpg combined to the W-12 engine’s numbers.

Additionally, the new Flying Spur V8 will put the model more in reach to top-line Mercedes , BMW , Jaguar and Maserati buyers. Sure, it’ll still cost way more than models from those manufacturers, but it will give fringe buyers something to think about.

Click past the jump to rear all about the 2015 Bentley Flying Spur V8.

When you’re browsing through the Chevrolet lineup for a high-performance vehicle, the SS is likely to get overlooked in favor of the Corvette , the Camaro , and maybe even the Sonic RS .

While those models deserve to be mentioned (the Sonic RS to a lesser extent), the hidden performance jewel of the Chevy lineup is the car with the shortest name: the SS .

The Smoking Tire took a Chevrolet SS for a test drive and you immediately know that the SS impressed the heck out of them. It’s not so much that the car itself used to be just a trim level instead of an actual model, or that Chevrolet doesn’t go out of its way to promote the same way it does the more popular models.

The true characteristic of the SS is its performance, it being given a massive 6.2-liter V-8 that produces an impressive 415 horsepower and 415 pound-feet of torque, good enough to hit 60 mph in under five seconds to go with a top speed of around 165 mph.

It’s not going to be as eye-catching as the Corvette or as angry and loud as the Camaro, but for all its worth, the Chevrolet SS gives you a sedan that hits all the right spots, even if it means doing so in the shadows.

When the checkered flag finally fell at the 2014 Daytona 500 late Sunday night, it was over Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s Chevrolet SS -inspired Sprint Cup race car . Earnhardt’s win came after a long day of racing and waiting with several multi-car pile-ups and an excruciating six hour rain delay.

While Earnhardt’s Chevy SS took much of the spotlight, it wasn’t the only SS circling the steep banks at the Great American Race; not considering the other tube-frame SS-look-a-likes trailing behind Jr.’s number 88 car. Pacing the race was the real deal, a 2014 Chevrolet SS modified only with safety strobe lights and Daytona 500 decals.

The SS is powered by GM’s 6.2-liter LS3 V-8 making 415 horsepower and 415 pound-feet of rear-wheel-spinning torque. A six-speed automatic with paddle shifters sends power to the rear differential sporting a 3.27:1 final drive ratio. Unfortunately, this four-door Camaro isn’t offered with a clutch pedal, but the automatic does allow for fairly quick shifts.

Inside the SS is a cabin showcasing GM’s new-found efforts in interior quality with materials and fit and finish on par with offerings from Cadillac and Buick . Heavily bolstered leather seats, a leather-covered steering wheel, and suede-like material give the car an upscale feel while buttons and controls have a weighted, rich feel to them.

For pacing duties, the SS is fitted with an aerodynamic light bar up top and strobes in the head and taillights. Daytona 500 decals and stripes are stuck to the SS’ Red Hot 2 paint color. Lower profile tires and optional chrome wheels further separate the car from regular production units.

Click past the jump to watch the video of the burning SS and read more about the standard Chevrolet SS.

Much like its sister company, Hyundai, Kia has been designing cars that not only offer its customers low-cost options to higher-priced brands, but also cars that offer high-quality workmanship and stylish appearances. We all knew that the Kia Forte is going to be up for a significant redesign when its 2014 model year debuts at the 2012 LA Auto Show, but we were not too sure what direction Kia would take it.

But now that the covers have been officially pulled and we have our answer.

We want to say that the Forte blew us away, but that just wouldn’t be fair to it. Sure, there are things about it that we like, but some elements of the car still leaves a lot to be desired. Then again, a car like the Forte, or any other in this segment for that matter, isn’t subject to an all-or-noting affection level.

There are things about it we liked. There are things we didn’t like. At the end though, the Forte received good marks from us because the things we liked outweighed the things we didn’t like.

Not by much. But hey, that’s still worth some salt to us.

Updated 02/24/2014: TopSpeed editor in chief, Justin Cupler, spent a week with a Kia Forte EX with all sorts of goodies installed. Did he love it? Check out the "Driving Impressions" section after the jump.

Find out what we think of the new 2014 Kia Forte after the jump

Audi RS4 Avant

Europe’s stringent emission laws have forced some shuffling deep within some of the continent’s biggest automakers, a lot of whom have had to make sacrifices on killing off their eight-cylinder engines in favor of settling for the six-cylinder variety. BMW and Mercedes are two such companies that have already taken to downgrading the powertrain for their performance vehicles and now, it appears that Audi is following suit.

Word from Car and Driver seems to indicate that the German company will be using turbocharged V-6 engines on its RS-branded lines, including the RS4 . No longer will the company’s sports line hitting production V-8, instead the focus will now center on those turbo V-6s, smaller in displacement but no less powerful once you add those turbochargers into the mix.

That’s looking like Audi’s plan for the RS4, which really is as much a return to its previous form than it is a downgrade of sorts. After all, as recent as 2001, the RS4 Avant packed a 2.7-liter, twin-turbo V-6 under its hood, so it’s not like Quattro GmbH is venturing into unchartered territory when it comes to marrying the two sides together.

The important thing for the RS4 is to not cheapen its value relative to the new BMW M4 and the redesigned M3 . It wouldn’t look too good for Audi if it cut power from its prized sports wagon, so you can still expect the vehicle to generate more than 400 horsepower.

Anything less would spell trouble for Audi given that its predecessor already had 450 ponies and other manufacturers have seemingly integrated those turbocharged V-6s into producing stout levels of output.

Only time will tell what Audi has in store for the RS4, but if those twin-turbo V-6s carry their weight, nobody’s going to be crying a river over the loss of those V-8s.

Note: Current Audi RS4 Avant pictured here.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2016 Audi RS4.

Source: CarAndDriver
Posted on by Christian Moe +  
BMW 4 Series Coupe

Every year, hundreds of motoring journalists from all over the world descend upon New York City for the New York International Auto Show . Among the new car reveals, fancy parties and exciting concepts, the New York Auto Show also plays host to the World Car of the Year Awards.

This prestigious award is handed out by a collection of experienced automotive journalists from around the world. Some of this year’s jurors include writers from countries like Japan, Russia, South Africa, China, Australia and more. Overall there are nearly 70 jurors in total.

Some of the previous year’s winners include the Mk VII Volkswagen Golf and the Nissan Leaf .

Of all the cars that were eligible for this year’s award, twelve have been selected as finalists. We have brought together all twelve of the final candidates for you here, and we also included a little bit information about each one.
Which one do you think deserves to win and why? Sound off in the comments below.

Click past the jump to read about the World Car of the Year candidates


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