Car News

Posted on by Nico DeMattia  

Bentleys introduction to the SUV world will come in the form of the Falcon. Due next year, Bentleys new flagship model, will be designed by Luc Donckerwolke, who has worked for the Volkswagen group for many years now and was the designer behind the Lamborghini Murcielago and Gallardo . His style usually utilizes sharp, crisp lines designed to reflect light. “I like really sharp, defined surfaces. If it’s too voluptuous, it’s too sweet. You need spices.”Said Donckerwolke.

This is somewhat different to the usual Bentley design, which is about softer, more rounded edges. However, despite his love for sharper lines, the new Falcon SUV will stick closely to the Bentley design language while still being a new direction for the famed British brand. “We are adapting the DNA of the brand to a new topology of car, but it’s always good when you do something that the brand hasn’t done before.”

A larger issue that Donckerwolke faces is creating a car for both the Western and Eastern markets. The Chinese and Russians seem to like the EXP 9 F concept , in which the Falcon is based, quite a bit, however the Western markets seemed more opposed to it. So the design for this car has to meet somewhere in the middle for both markets. Donckerwolke claims this is a difficult task and says Bentley “can’t design for just one market. We are ambassadors of a culture, and we have to look like a Bentley.” Hopefully Donckerwolke is up to the task, as he will have some stiff competition from Maserati and Aston Martin, which are both developing their own SUVs .

Click past the jump to read more about the Bentley Falcon

The Pirelli World Challenge (PWC) has become increasingly difficult for Cadillac and its CTS-V.R race car , which now faces competition from lighter and more powerful GT3-spec machines. Mercedes AMG , McLaren , Lamborghini and Porsche have all joined the PWC series in 2014, preventing the CTS Coupe-based racer from winning more than three events in 2014. Cadillac is in dire need of brand-new vehicle and word has it the manufacturer is already testing a brand-new chassis for 2015.

According to Racer, the next-generation Pirelli World Challenge car was seen lapping the Gingerman road course in Michigan in late-August 2014. While there’s no actual footage or photos of the vehicle, the source claims the new chassis will drop the CTS-V Coupe body in favor of an ATS-V Coupe -based shell. A new body could also mean a new engine, as Cadillac is expected to drop a twin-turbo V-6 in the yet unconfirmed ATS-V.R. The current race car is motivated by a naturally aspirated, 6.2-liter V-8.

As with its predecessor, the ATS-V-based track car is also developed by longtime Cadillac Racing partner Pratt & Miller engineering.

Click past the jump to read about the Cadillac ATS Coupe

Source: Racer

Leave it to Red Bull to pull off a stunt like this. The F1 racing team got the help of FLIR, the leading company in infrared camera systems, to do some high-speed infrared video of its car commencing in gratuitous burnouts.

The video provided by the high-speed FLIR cameras is absolutely stunning, with hot pebbles of rubber and scorching exhaust gases showering front and rear of the racecar . The slow motion effects add all the more drama. The footage was captured at the GAMMA Racing Day 2014 at the famed TT circuit Assen.

FLIR captured these shots with several of its camera systems, including the T650sc, the B660, and the x6580sc for high-speed shots. FLIR is the world’s largest company specializing in infrared cameras has supplies cameras to everyone from the U.S. Military , to BMW for uses in their vehicles, to a consumer-based infrared camera for the iPhone .

One thing is for sure, you’ve never seen doughnuts like this before.

If you thought the GT-R -powered Nissan Juke and its 545 horsepower was a crazy idea, then you’re in for a big surprise. Nismo’s crazy limited-edition crossover is far from being the fastest Juke ever built and it’s quite slow compared to the monster a Russian company managed to create. How’s that possible, you may ask? Well, the folks over at Shpilli Villi Engineering squeezed no less than 800 ponies out of Godzilla’s twin-turbo, 3.8-liter, V-6 engine, while adding a shot of nitrous for an extra 200 horses. That’s right, this Juke has no less than 1,000 horsepower traveling through its drivetrain, albeit only for a few seconds.

So what do you do when you have at least 800 horses to spare besides winning a dozen drag races against the world’s most powerful supercars ? You take it to the Nurburgring track, of course, the place where all production cars go to have their engines and chassis refined. Not that this Juke needs further tweaks or any race-course time given its purpose, but at least the Juke R isn’t one of those massive SUVs BMW and Mercedes-Benz keeps bringing at the ’Ring.

Naturally, the overly powerful crossover isn’t the kind of vehicle you’d expect to set a new Nurburgring record, especially on a wet track, but owner and race car driver Vladimir Ulanov manages to put the Juke R through its paces and clock a few fast laps. Thankfully, the Russians captured it all on tape and you can watch the madness in the video above.

The Vitara, one of Suzuki’s most iconic vehicles, was launched in 1988 as a compact SUV . Dubbed Escudo in Japan and Sidekick in the United States, the small crossover came to North America for the 1989 model year. The Vitara name, mostly used in Europe and some South American and Asian market, was introduced in the United States starting 1999. That’s when the second-gen Vitara was born as a slightly larger, pricier and more powerful version of the first-gen model. A replacement was developed for 2005, but the current Grand Vitara has very little in common with the original concept. For 2015, however, the Vitara nameplate is making a surprising return to its roots, as it’s pinned as a compact SUV destined to compete against the Nissan Juke .

Set to break cover at the 2014 Paris Motor Show in October, the brand-new Vitara promises to have "a striking road presence," a "distinctive design," and numerous personalization options, the latter a feat Suzuki rarely offers. So is the Vitara signaling the Japanese are reinventing themselves? It’s a bit too early to draw a conclusion, but the compact SUV is definitely a new approach for a company such as Suzuki.

Click past the jump to read more about the Suzuki Vitara

BMW’s M5 is rumored to get a healthy boost in power while the rest of the 5-Series lineup gets some additional features both inside and out. That’s according to the German website Autobild, which reports the changes will come with the next generation of BMW’s full-size sedans .

Leading the headlines is a rumored 626-horsepower M5 that will feature all-wheel-drive. Not much is know on how BMW plans on producing that power, but it’s a possibility the automaker will still use the same twin-turbocharged, 4.4-liter V-8. Currently that engine produces 560 horsepower, so adding an extra 66 horsepower shouldn’t be an impossible task.

The next-gen 5 Series lineup is said to also roughly 100 pounds lighter, thanks to extensive use of aluminum in place of steel. Despite the added lightness, the Bimmer will feature more premium interior materials. The iDrive controller will be revised to use smaller turn/push knob and its voice recognition software will be easier to use. The car’s automated driving features are also set for an extensive update, making fully automated driving a closer reality.

A plug-in hybrid is also set for release. Its 109-horsepower electric motor will work in conjunction with a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine, itself producing 240 horsepower. The hybrid is also rumored to have inductive charging abilities.

The remainder of the BMW 5 Series lineup will get power updates as well. The top version of the 3.0-liter I-6 will produce 354 horsepower and 368 pound-feet of torque; the diesel will produce 324 horsepower with a respectable 486 pound-feet of torque; and the M550xd will kick out 402 horses and 553 pound-feet of torque.

We can expect the new 5 Series to hit German roads for the 2016 model year.

Click past the jump to read about the current BMW M5

Jay’s latest adventure takes a deep dive into hot-rodding history with this beautiful 1932 Ford Highboy roadster . But don’t pass this off as just another deuce coupe . No, this car is the deuce coupe. Jay has with him Bruce Meyer, the car’s restorer and current owner, who tells of a storied past barely imaginable.

The story began in the late 1940s as U.S. soldiers were returning home from the war. At that time, Bob McGee was a student at the University of Southern California and had customized the 1932 Ford in ways never done before. He had notched the frame in order to lower the car, added a custom three-piece hood, V-notched the spreader bar, removed the fenders, shaved the radiator cap and door handles, reworked the car’s interior, and added a 21-stud, Flathead V-8 from a 1934 Ford.

The car then gains even more notoriety when Bob Petersen, the owner of Hot Rod Magazine and Petersen Publishing, shot a picture of McGee in his deuce coupe cruising along the USC campus for the cover of Hot Rod Magazine. As it turns out, McGee’s roadster was one of the first hot rods to grace the magazine’s cover.

McGee eventually had to sell his beloved roadster and the car underwent many other modifications over the years by the hands of several owners. That’s when Bruce Meyer got a hold of it. He painstakingly restored the car back to its original glory, even employing the direction of McGee in his older age.

Now we get to enjoy this piece of history as Jay and Bruce drive the 1932 Ford down its native streets of Southern California. This, my friends, is the definition of hot-rodding.

SUVs and crossovers became increasingly popular beginning in the 1990s. Few automakers have yet to join this profitable segment, while most manufacturers that offer such vehicles are elbows deep into providing the sportiness and chutzpah more and more customers are demanding nowadays, while struggling to keep up with the stringent fuel-consumption and CO2-emission regulations. Granted, SUVs are now more than just plain, slow vehicles designed to haul people or tackle the roughest off-road trails.

Need a sports car that rides higher than usual and can carry four people comfortably? Porsche is ready to take your check and deliver a Cayenne . If legroom is what interests you most, but you also need more than 500 ponies and an off-road capable rig, then you’re better off with the Range Rover LWB . You’d rather trade British elegance and German sportiness for some American bling? No problem, you’re the reason why Cadillac is building the Escalade . There’s no doubt these are all great machines, but they all come with at least one drawback, they’re awfully expensive.

That’s not to say there aren’t any affordable SUVs that can offer seating for seven people out there. There’s a handful of seven-seaters you can buy for less than $50,000 that still offer plenty of posh features. We put together a list comprising the cheapest luxury seven-seater SUVs you can buy for the 2015 model year. Check it out below and let us know which one would you pick as a daily driver.

Click past the jump to find out more about the Top 5 Luxury 7-Seater SUVs priced under $50,000.

It appears Bentley’s Mulsanne Convertible Concept is back on the drawing board. This comes after the project was killed by Bentley’s then-new CEO Wolfgang Schreiber back in 2012. Originally debuted to a small number of customers at the Concours d’Elegance a few months prior, the project went cold when Bentley’s former CEO Wolfgang Duerheimer left the company.

With Duerheimer gone, Schreiber told journalists “we will not do that car,” saying there was “just regional demand” and that it lacked a strong business case. Well the turn of fates has Duerheimer, the father of the Mulsanne Convertible Concept, returning as CEO of Bentley just two years after his leaving.

“When I returned, I was a bit irritated by the fact that no work had been done on this project in two years, Duerheimer said, later reassuring Automotive News that the project was “back on track.”

During his absence at Bentley, Duerheimer spent time as Audi’s Chief of Research and Development, along with a short period at Volkswagen coordinating all its motorsports activities.

Duerheimer is convinced the Mulsanne Convertible will be a strong competitor to the upcoming convertible versions of the Rolls-Royce Ghost and Mercedes-Benz S-Class . Still at this point we don’t know much about the Mulsanne’s pricing or future availability. But with Wolfgang Duerheimer back at the helm, his brainchild will assuredly make it to production.

Click past the jump to read more about the Bentley Mulsanne Vision Concept

Mazda is now confirming details on its upcoming launch of the all-new 2016 MX-5 Miata . The event is set to take place in Monterey, California on Wednesday, September 3, 2014. It will in fact be a global launch with simultaneous debuts in Tokyo and Barcelona. Coverage will also be viewable live on Mazda’s YouTube channel.

Besides the new MX-5 getting the spotlight, 1980s rock band Duran Duran will headline the event, singing plenty of their classic hits. “Duran Duran and the MX-5 Miata both made their world debuts in the 1980s and captured the hearts and imagination of an entire generation,” says Russell Wager, vice president of marketing for Mazda North American Operations. “In 25 years, both the car and the band have evolved while staying true to their roots.”

This is a special time for the MX-5 Miata, as it celebrated its 25th anniversary on February 10, 2014 and will soon break the one millionth unit sold. As of this writing, Mazda quotes that it’s sold over 930,000 Miatas globally since its debut back in 1989.

The details about the new Miata are still unknown, but that won’t last for long. Its debut is scheduled for 6:00 p.m. PDT.

Mazda is throwing a second party for the MX-5 in partnership with Fashion Rocks. The event will be broadcast live on CBS on Tuesday, September 9 at 9:00 p.m. ET. Fashion Rocks will be hosted by Ryan Seacrest at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. The two-hour event will celebrate the close relationship between fashion and music.

Click past the jump to read the full press release


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