Kirby’s fascination with cars began when he first laid eyes on his first Micro Machine. At that time, he thought they were the coolest toys in the world, narrowly edging out those Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles action figures. Over time, his love for cars evolved to Matchbox cars and Burago models, then finally, it all became a reality when he bought his first ride — a 1998 Honda City — back in 2002.
His tastes and preferences on cars has changed over time, but his passion remains (as does his love for TMNT). Writing about his passions for Top Speed has been the closest thing to a dream job this side of being a Ferrari test driver.
One of the hottest SUV concepts to appear this year — the Lexus LF-NX — will not remain just a concept much longer, according to reports. Cue all the rejoicing from fans of this absolutely wicked crossover!
The news comes by way of Auto Express, who spoke with Lexus ’ European director Paul Van der Burgh about the future of the concept crossover. According to Van der Burgh, customer demand spurred the decision for the automaker to green light a production model of the LF-NX. Even better, the production version of the concept will receive many of the striking exterior details of the concept, a development that could turn the LF-NX into one of the sickest looking crossovers /SUVs this side of the upcoming Lamborghini Urus.
No word yet on what kind of powertrain the production LF-NX is going to carry. The concept that appeared last September at the Frankfurt Motor Show carried a 2.5-liter, Atkinson-cycle four-cylinder engine working with an electric motor while the turbo model that was shown at the Tokyo Motor Show just last month featured a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder turbocharged gasoline engine with D-4S and VVT-i combustion technologies.
The production LF-NX is expected to go on sale sometime in the summer of 2014, making it one of the most eagerly anticipated new crossovers of the next year. Lexus will show the LF-NX’s production variant at the 2014 Geneva Motor Show .
Click past the jump to read more about the Lexus LF-NX Concept
Customers of the Bugatti Veyron in North America are in for a treat, as if having the capabilities to buy one of the most expensive cars in the world isn’t good enough.
If you happen to be a prospective customer of Bugatti and you’re in line to buy one of its multi-million-dollar supercars , the French automaker will give you a chance to take one of its own out for a spin. And by "one of its own", we mean the world’s fastest convertible, the mighty Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse .
The recently-launched Bugatti Dynamic Drive Experience allows you to see whether you made the right decision in signing up for a Veyron and while we can’t imagine a reason for somebody to renege on their interest after driving the car, the Dynamic Drive Experience is the perfect way for prospective owners to find out if they could handle the heat of owning one of the world’s fastest, most powerful, and most expensive supercars.
The first Dynamic Drive Experience was recently held in Las Vegas with Bugatti indicating that more stops in cities across the U.S. and Canada are being planned.
Click past the jump to read more about the Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse
Aftermarket company, BBM Motorsport, has pulled the covers off of its new program for the BMW M6 Cabriolet and by all accounts, this is one of the more impressive takes we’ve seen of the German saloon .
The first order of business was to change the color of the M6, and BBM Motorsport called in SFT Carwrap for the job. With the latter responsible for the dress-up, the M6 Cabrio was treated to a fancy matte steel-blue body wrap and accented with gunpowder shades that came from SOTT / Arlon. A set of alloy wheels - 21-inch Breyton Spirit R types - was also installed, as was a KW suspension kit that keeps the car handling supremely even with all the power upgrades it received.
Speaking of such, BBM Motorsport wasted little time giving the M6 Cabrio a huge engine modification, something it achieved by remapping the ECU and installing a complete Akrapovic exhaust with carbon end pipes. With these upgrades, the aftermarket company was able to increase the output of the M6 to an insane 705 horsepower and 636 pound-feet of torque, a significant rise from the standard 560-horsepower and 502 pound-feet of torque output of the standard model.
No performance numbers were given, but we assume the BBM Motorsport-tuned M6 is now capable of hitting 60 mph in 3.5 seconds to go with a top speed of 190 mph.
Click past the jump to read more about the BBM Motorsport’s program for the BMW M6 Cabriolet
Shortly after unveiling the absolutely scintillating Red Bull X2014 , Sony and Polyphony Digital decided to give us all a peek at what we can expect with all of its Vision Gran Turismo Concepts . Yup, the two companies weren’t just content with just one teaser image; they decided to give us a tease of a handful of vehicles that will appear as part of the Vision Gran Turismo Concepts.
It’s been a few days since Paul Walker’s unexpected passing and the details behind the ordeal are still pretty hard to fathom.
One of the things that have been directly affected by Walker’s death is the Fast & Furious franchise, which is actually in the middle of filming its seventh installment with Walker playing a prominent role in it, as usual.
Recently, leaked footage containing a scene from Fast & Furious 7 made it’s rounds in which Walker’s character, Brian O’Conner, promises "just one more" funeral while attending one held for another member of the "Fast Family," Han Seoul-Oh. You can see the scene above, though the audio is a little low quality.
Not a lot of details are being released about this particular scene, although a recent report from Movies indicated that the scene is actually a spoiler from the Fast & Furious 6 Blu-ray and DVD.
Either way, it’s a particularly goosebump-raising scene given the unfortunate and truly shocking death of Walker last weekend.
Our thoughts and prayers are still with his family and friends.
Click past the jump to relive all the trailers for all six Fast & Furious movies.
Caractere Exclusive has just finished work on the recently revised Porsche Panamera , but that didn’t stop it from jumping into a new project. This time, it turned its attention to the Porsche 911 Cabriolet.
Known for building some impressive programs for Porsche vehicles, Caractere Exclusive has another one to offer its loyal customer base. While it doesn’t have the same comprehensive list of goodies that we’ve come to expect from the company, it still makes the 911 Cabriolet look all sorts of wicked.
What’s of particular note about this program is that the kit it comes with was built entirely from polyurethane (PU) that was done through the reaction injection molding (RIM) process. A host of components have been built using this material, including a redesigned front bumper with built-in air intakes. New side skirts are also part of the program, all of which come with integrated air intakes and outlets.
Around back, there’s a new rear wing that has its own brake light, as well as engine vents, and a new trunk lid. Rounding out the program is a new rear spoiler and a set of 20- or 21-inch, three-piece modular matte GRAPHITE CW2 forged alloy wheels.
Click past the jump to read more about Caractere Exclusive’s program for the Porsche 911 Cabriolet
The Volkswgen Touareg is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year, and while a lot of folks in Europe have enjoyed the full-sized SUV for as long as it’s been around, people here in the US haven’t had that long of a love affair with the vehicle.
The German automaker hopes to change all that after announcing that a special-edition Touareg, dubbed the Touareg X, is coming to America.
The "X" designation on the SUV is a reference to its 10th year anniversary and as one can expect with a limited-run set, the Touareg X has its fair share of custom goodies, befitting of its stature as a special edition.
The SUV itself is based on the Volkswagen Touareg TDI Clean Diesel Lux and has been revised to include a number of new features, including a Moonlight Blue Pearl exterior, a new set of 19-inch, Moab-style alloy wheels, and an interior that’s been dressed to the nines.
One look at the cabin and you immediately know that this Touareg is dressed to impress. There are Vienna leather seats, a black headliner and engineered ebony wood trim. In addition to all of that, the Touareg X’s cabin also got piano black accents, illuminated sill plates and faux aluminum pedal covers.
Power wasn’t modified, and yet we don’t think anybody will have problems with the Touareg X’s 3.0-liter, turbodiesel V-6 engine, developing 240 horsepower and 406 pound-feet of torque.
Like we said, the Touareg X is a limited run vehicle with only 1,000 units earmarked to come Stateside. Pricing begins at $56,170.
Click past the jump to read about the Volkswagen Touareg
When Dr. Don Panoz, the man largely behind the DeltaWing Coupe , saw the BladeGlider Concept , he probably didn’t take too kindly to its design, something he believes infringed on the look of the DeltaWing project.
Apparently, Panoz believes Nissan did just that, and he’s taking to the courts to issue a cease-and-desist order on the BladeGlider and the ZEOD RC — another car that bears a striking similarity to the Delta Wing project. While this piece of news might come as a surprise to a lot of people, it was actually months in the making for Panoz, who already had reservations when Nissan came out with the ZEOD RC, months after pulling out of the DeltaWing project.
And with the BladeGlider bearing the same design — the long nose cone, the narrow front track, and the wider rear track — Panoz knew that action needed to be taken, and take action he did, naming Nissan motorsport boss, Darren Cox, and former DelaWing colleague, Ben Bowlby, as part of the lawsuit.
Now, filing a lawsuit and seeing something done about it are two different things. Panoz accomplished the first one pretty easily, claiming infringement of intellectual property rights on Nissan’s part. The second part, though, will still be a matter of how the courts treat the issue.
What we do know is that this battle between Nissan and DeltaWing is just getting started.
Click past the jump to read about the 2012 NIssan DeltaWing and the 2013 Nissan BladeGlider Concept
The Range Rover Sport is one of those SUV s that doesn’t really need to a whole lot to grab attention. But if an aftermarket company is willing to give it some added shine, we doubt the SUV will have any complaints about it.
One of the best tuners for Range Rovers happens to be really good at things like this and at the 2013 Essen Motor Show, Startech presented a program that took a pretty long time to build. Then again, with programs of this quality, you can’t short change the time it takes to get it up in full swing.
Designed to further enhance the Range Rover Sport’s already appealing visage, the Startech program comes with a load of new features, the most prominent of which are new body components, including a new front bumper with larger air intakes and hooked up with LED daytime running lights. At the rear, a new diffuser was also installed, as well as a stainless-steel sports exhaust system, adding that throatier response that will be of good use with the performance kit added under the SUV’s hood.
Rounding out the exterior mods is a set of 22-inch alloy wheels and a suspension lowering module that can drop the SUV’s ride height by about 25 mm (0.98 inches).
Meanwhile, the interior’s been spruced up with some fine upholstery material, something the Range Rover Sport deserves. Be it premium leather or Alcantara, the material is nothing but top-of-the-line and complemented nicely by carbon-fiber and exotic-wood trim.
Finally, this program wouldn’t be complete without any performance mods and that’s exactly what Startech did. The tuner equipped the SUV with an SD30 S tuning kit, driving up the output of the Range Rover Sport to 323 horsepower and 501 pound-feet of torque, which is a nice jump from the stock 258 horsepower and 600 Nm (443 pound-feet) of torque from the stock 3.0-liter turbo-diesel engine. This power allows the vehicle to hit 62 mph in 6.9 seconds to go with a top speed of 138 mph.
Click past the jump to read more about Startech’s program for the Range Rover Sport
Russian tuner Larte Design may not be a household name on the tuning scene, but that hasn’t hampered the company from dishing out a new program in attempt to gain more recognition front the public and the industry.
It’s latest work is based on the Range Rover Evoque and despite not being a jaw-dropper at first glance, the kit does still include a variety of aesthetic and performance modifications
A new wide body kit was install, featuring a new honeycomb grille and large air intakes in the front apron. The kit also has a redesigned rear apron, a centrally-mounted triple exhaust system, and a set of gloss-black, 21-inch lightweight alloy wheels. Additionally, the Evoque’s suspension was tuned to drop the SUV by 30 mm (1.18 inches).
Meanwhile, power comes in the form of a 2.2-liter, four-cylinder engine that produces 190 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque. Thanks to Larte Design, the Evoque saw its output increase to 220 horsepower and 354 pound-feet of torque.
The modifications are simple, but ultimately, effective to give the SUV a serious upgrade in style, attitude, and flair.
Click past the jump to read about the Range Rover Evoque