A Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV) is a type of passenger vehicle which combines the load-hauling and passenger-carrying capacity of a large station wagon or minivan with features designed for off-road driving. They have been the hot car to own for the past 10 years, but lately they are regarded as gas guzzler and substantially dangerous because of high potential to roll over.
BMW is preparing to recreate its entire X family and the new-generation X5 is only part of the job. The BMW X5 was first launched in 1999, and 13 years later, it’s getting ready to enter its third generation to help keep up with the changing times. The redesigned SUV is rumored to make its world debut in 2014 at the Detroit Auto Show.
BMW will mostly focus on reducing the X5’s total weight and improving the final performance figures for its new generation. It is rumored that BMW plans to reduce the SUV’s total weight by about 330 pounds, but it will still be offered with the latest technologies, like a lane-departure warning and compensation system, night vision, park assist, traffic-sign recognition, surround-view cameras, and active cruise control.
The new X5 will be offered with two new four-cylinder engines and the most powerful version will still get a 4.4-liter V-8 engine with improved power figures and a increased fuel economy. It is also rumored that BMW is planning a plug-in hybrid version.
As for the exterior design, it will be more an evolution of the current car as opposed to a revolution.
Updated 04/25/2013: Another image of the new X5 (above) has surfaced online and this time it looks like more than just a simple rendering. So, if this is really a leaked image of the next X5 it can mean only one thing: the official debut is getting closer. (bp.blogspot)
Updated 5/24/2013: A slick person with an HD camera phone managed to catch the X5 with very little camo to hide its goodies. Thanks to a tip from a reader, we now have this HD video and a few screen shots of all the good stuff after the jump. Things are looking good for the new X5, really good...
Shortly after Maserati unveiled the Kubang concept at the 2011 Frankfurt Auto Show, rumors began circulating that a production version would be offered. Shortly after, Maserati confirmed that a production version will indeed be offered, but the production version will drop the Kubang name in favor of Levante.
The SUV takes its name from the Via Emilia Levante in Bologna, where the Maserati brothers, almost a century ago, dreamed up the company that today still bears their name.
The Levante will be offered with three engines: a twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V-6 engine delivering 410 horsepower, a twin-turbocharged 3.8-liter V-8 engine with 530 horsepower and a turbo-diesel engine only offered in Europe. All the three engines will be mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission and will send their power to all four wheels via Maserati’s new all-wheel-drive system.
Maserati’s first SUV will combine exterior and interior elements from Quattroporte and Ghibli with some electronic architecture from Chrysler and Jeep.
Until recently, it was rumored that the Levante would be built at Chrysler’s Jefferson North Assembly Plant in Detroit alongside the Jeep Grand Cherokee, but due to the huge demand for the Jeep SUV, this isn’t a possibility. Instead, it will be produced in Italy.
The Levante will be unveiled in 2014 - just in time to celebrate Maserati’s centennial.
Image Note: The above image is a TopSpeed rendering and not an official image of the Levante
Update 5/21/2013: A report by Edmunds has revealed more information on the Levante’s production home and drivetrain.
This is a lesson George Michael had to learn in a very unpleasant way. It looks like the famous musician opened a Range Rover’s door and tried to pull it shut again because it wasn’t shut properly. Before he could close the door, he fell out of the car at 70 mph.
The incident happened on a motorway near St Albans and a woman approaching from behind almost ran him over. Katherine Fox said that when she saw him falling from the car she slamed on her brakes and reversed her Mini, so that no other vehicles would hit him.
According to Fox, George Michael had his clothes ripped and there was blood everywhere. Still, when he was transported to the hospital, his publicist Connie Filipello said that the injuries are just "superficial cuts and bruises." Michael’s partner, Fadi Fawaz, also reported the Michael was doing well at the hospital.
Police officers have opened an investigation and a final decision on what happened will be announced the in the upcoming weeks. We’ll keep an eye on Michael’s condition and report back if anything changes, but he seems like everything is going to be fine.
Click past the jump to read more about George Michael’s other incidents with cars.
After the VelociRaptor APV concept announced back in 2010, Hennessey finally decided to come with a production version. The new package will be applied to the Ford F-150 Raptor SVT and will be limited to only 30 units per year. Customers interested will have to pay a total of $149,500.
The tuner transformed the Raptor pickup into an SUV, so it now offers seating capacity for up to eight people, making it the ideal car for a big family.
In standard form, the VelociRaptor is powered by the Raptor’s standard 6.2-liter V-8 engine delivering a total of 411 horsepower, but you know as well as we o that Hennessey wouldn’t stop there. For an additional cost, the tuner will install a 600 Supercharged upgrade, which will increase the SUV’s output to 600 horsepower. If you have a few more dollars in your pocket, Hennessey also offers a Brembo front brake upgrade, larger wheels and tires, LED lighting upgrades, bespoke interior and electronic upgrades, and new security and armoring systems.
With all these updates, the VelociRaptor’s weight will be increased by about 600 pounds. With this added weight, the base version will sprint from 0 to 60 mph in just 7.5 seconds and the 600-horsepower version does the same sprint in just 5.9 seconds.
Click past the jump to read more about the standard Ford F-150 Raptor SVT.
The Suburban nameplate is the longest continuously running name used in General Motors’ lineup. Granted, the model has not been the same for the entire 81 years it’s been in existence, as the nameplate started on essentially overgrown station wagon that was for military use only, then it became a windowed “carryall” truck and didn’t really resemble the modern day model until 1967.
Now 81 years young, the Suburban is going stronger than ever as it enters the 2014 model year and shows no signs of slowing down. With other makers downsizing their full-size SUVs into more agile crossover models, the Suburban remains one of the handful of body-on-frame SUVs left roaming the Earth. Essentially, it is the automotive equivalent of a brontosaurus.
Even though the 2014 model for the most par carries over aesthetically and mechanically, Chevy has tweaked the model ever so slightly to keep it fresh and ready to roll with all-new standard features and a new color.
Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Suburban
Back in March, Kahn Design unveiled a cool Chelsea Wide Track tuning kit based on the Land Rover Defender. This week, the tuner has further expanded the kit with a few more options and come with the Chelsea Wide Track Fuji White/ Matt Pearl Grey.
The updates offered for the new package are similar to the ones offered in the previous version, but this time the SUV is painted in a nice combination of Fuji White and Matt Pearl Grey, while for the interior, the tuner opted to combine red leather with black quilted leather and grey Alcantara with silver stitching.
Along with this cool color combination, Kahn also offers up an aerodynamic exterior kit, a new set of wheels, privacy glass and lots of updates for the interior.
Click past the jump to read more about the Land Rover Defender Chelsea Wide Track Fuji White by Kahn Design.
The new Jeep Grand Cherokee will arrive in European dealers later in July and in order to help its customers further individualize their SUVs, Mopar is offering more than 100 accessories to choose from. Thanks to these accessories, customers can improve the SUV’s technical, styling and mechanical characteristics.
The list of accessories will include: aluminum racing pedal unit kit; protective mat situated in the boot loading area; and aluminum sill plates distinguished by a back-lit “Jeep” logo. For the exterior, customers can opt for: special wheels; chromed parts; molded splash guards; skid plates; sport-utility bars; a roof cargo basket, soft-side roof cargo carrier; bike and ski carriers; trailer hitch; a trailer wiring; and tubular side steps.
Unfortunately, no updates were made under the hood, but even in the standard version, the Grand Cherokee is quite a powerful SUV.
Click past the jump to read more about the Jeep Grand Cherokee.
Harry Metcalfe from Evo Magazine was one of a select few to find himself at Lamborghini’s 50th anniversary gala and apparently he took to tweeting during the event. One of his tweets alerted us to something that we all assumed but were still uncertain of: Lamborghini will produce its first SUV since the LM002 starting in 2017.
You read that right, folks; we are just three or four model years – depending on whether Metcalfe was talking U.S. model years or Euro model years – away from seeing the Lamborghini Urus in showrooms. Of course, we do take this report with a little doubt, as it is not straight from the mouth of Lamborghini, but the source is still rather reliable.
Surprisingly, the Tweet has remained up for quite a long time without Metcalfe getting too much flak from Lambo over it. And the longevity of this tweet lends a little authority to it, as Lamborghini is quick to squash any leaks that are either huge secrets or outright lies.
We’ll keep an eye on the twitter world to see if Metcalfe changes his tune soon or if Lamborghini chooses to release this information after seeing how much press it’s getting. Stay tuned!
At the 2013 Geneva Motor Show, TECHART unveiled cool aerodynamic kit based on the diesel version of the new Porsche Cayenne S. The model displayed in Geneva featured a deep-black metallic paint combined with a black leather interior and a new set of wheels, sized 23 inches with light-green applications. However, each customer can opt from a wide selection of colors and materials.
The aerodynamic kit includes a three-part front spoiler with integrated air outlets for a better cooling, a new carbon-fiber aero hood with integrated double-sided air outlets, a new front apron and side skirts, a roof spoiler and a rear apron with integrated diffuser and two reflectors. TECHART is also offering a Lighting Package that includes twin headlights with LED or halogen lights.
When it comes to wheel choices, customers will have a wide selection to choose from: Formula 5-spoke light-alloy wheels ranging from 20 to 23 inches or Formula III 5-spoke forged light-alloy wheels sized 21 or 22 inches. The tuner is also offering a new sport exhaust system that will further improve the diesel engine’s sound.
For the interior, the tuner is offers high-quality materials, exotic woods or carbon and lots of individual colors.
Just months after unveiling the base kit, Porsche has added in an engine tune that includes the tuner’s TA 058/SD1 powerkit. When you press the “Sport” button in the center console, this powerkit bumps the Diesel S’s power by 38 horsepower to a full 420 ponies and 73 pound-feet of torque to 700 pound-feet. This helps drop the SUV’s 0-to-100 km/h (62 mph) time to 5.2 seconds – 0.5 seconds faster than the stock time – and increase top speed by 4 km /h (2.48 mph) to 256 km/h (159.07 mph).
Also added in is TECHART’s TECHTRONIC system that improves acceleration and driving dynamics without interfering with the standard control software.
Submit an inquiry to TECHART for pricing and delivery times.
UPDATE 5/12/2013: TECHART has released a new engine tune for the Cayenne Diesel S
Hennessey is far and away one of the best American tuners and this time the tuner focused its attention on a Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8. Equipped with the tuner’s HPE650 package, the model was taken to the racetrack and put to the test on the 1/4-mile.
The results were pretty impressive for the Grand Cherokee, as it ran the 1/4-mile in 12.6 seconds at a speed of 110 mph. The updated SUV sprints from 0 to 60 mph in just 3.9 seconds.
The HPE650 package includes: new ported cylinder heads; a custom air intake; a TVS2300 supercharger; stainless-steel, long-tube headers; an upgraded fuel system; and an optimized ECU. With these updates, the SRT8 delivers a total of 650 horsepower - up from the standard 470 horsepower.
Let us know in the comments section below if you like the updates offered by Hennessey for the Jeep SRT8.