Kirby Garlitos

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.


Part of Daimler AG’s new ownership stake in Aston Martin appears to be ajoint partnership between the two companies to develop a slate of sport-utility vehicles. Don’t look now, but the future of the long-awaited Lagonda SUV might just have gotten a lot clearer.

According to Bloomberg, the two brands are in the middle of talks on sharing the underpinnings of a new full-size SUV with Aston Martin, something the British marquee has planned for a long time but has yet to materialize.

But the recent alliance with Daimler opens up a whole slate of possibilities for Aston Martin , now that it has a technology partner that can provide it with the right blueprint to see to completion a project that has been in the works for a long time now.

Part of the discussion appears to be Daimler helping Aston Martin in shaping up the Lagonda SUV. The two have already announced another part of their deal that calls for Mercedes’ AMG division to help develop new V-8 engines that will be used on future Aston Martin models. So this latest news that the two companies are now working on the Lagonda can be construed as another significant step toward what’s shaping up to be a fruitful alliance between the two companies.

Daimler may not get anything out of it at the moment, but should Aston’s next wave of models, the Lagonda included, be sales hits, Daimler’s five percent stake in Aston Martin could very well prove to be very useful.

Click past the jump to read more about the long-rumored Lagonda SUV.

Source: Bloomberg

The Mercedes A45 AMG may be considered as the baby brother of AMG’s full lineup, but there’s nothing small about this model once you add Brabus into the mix. Thanks to the German tuner’s comprehensive aerodynamic and performance upgrades, this A45 AMG is ready to tussle with the big boys.

The program is typical of what you can expect from Brabus. Slap on some new aero components, dress up the interior, and drop a performance upgrade on the engine. It’s the three-step process to turning cars like the A45 AMG into veritable pocket rockets.

But the best part about this program — apart from having Brabus’ seal of approval — is the fact that on its own, the A45 AMG is already a pretty powerful Mercedes , capable of producing in excess of 360 horsepower and 331 pound-feet of torque. This insane power allows the A45 AMG to hit 60 mph in 4.6 seconds to go with a top speed of 155 mph.

But even with those impressive numbers, Brabus was still able to add more ponies to the engine, which in a lot of ways proves that when it comes to Mercedes models, nobody does aftermarket programs better than this tuner.

Click past the jump to read more about the Mercedes-Benz A45 AMG by Brabus.


The hotly anticipated launch of the Jaguar XQ-Type isn’t expected until 2016, but as early as now, Jaguar is already started development of the "sports crossover" ahead of that timeframe. With its impending arrival, the folks over at Jaguar aren’t wasting any time in building the XQ, not when its expected rival, the Porsche Macan , is drawing closer and closer to its own launch date.

Fortunately for Jaguar, it won’t have to start from scratch in building the XQ as the SUV ’s basic aluminum architecture is set to be borrowed from the XE compact sedan. It’s no secret that Jaguar is targeting the younger buyers that have active lifestyles and it’s preparing the XQ to fit that bill. According to Jaguar’s global marketing director, Steven de Ploey, the XQ could also be prepared to cater to "women buyers and more customers with young families," a good indication that the market for the sports crossover will be different from the people the British company targets with its luxury sedans.

The XQ is still a Jaguar at heart, but its characteristics will be markedly different from cars like the XF and the XJ . Like with Porsche’s plan for the Macan, Jaguar is trying to establish a new segment of customers to complement the well-off adults that are already in its books.

“It is a Jaguar, but in a completely different form," chief designer Ian Callum explained when the C-X17 Concept was first show at the Los Angeles Auto Show late last year.

By all intents and purposes, the XQ could be the vehicle that gives Jaguar a more diverse client base. That’s what the company’s aiming for, and we’ll know whether the plan pays off or not when the crossover arrives in 2016.

Click past the jump to read more about the Jaguar SUV.

Source: AutoCar

The Vauxhall VXR8 doesn’t get nearly the same amount of love as the Audi RS6 Avant , or any of the equally powerful German estate models. But completely dismissing the VXR8 isn’t fair to the Vauxhall , something EVO found out first-hand during a recent comparison run between the two.

It goes without saying that high-performance estate models don’t get any better than the RS6 Avant. Audi is one of the pioneers of the segment and the latest RS6 Avant holds true to all of Ingolstadt’s capabilities in building a car that still runs incredibly despite carrying all that weight.

Ultimately, EVO found the RS6 Avant impressive given the standards Audi has set for it. But it didn’t possess the kind of "fun" EVO wanted out of its, which is saying something. The 1:26.5 lap time of the RS6 was impressive in a lot of ways, and certainly much faster than the 1:29.9 seconds the VXR8 pulled out of its hat.

But as far as entertainment value was concerned, Evo gave the nod to the Vauxhall not so much because its more fun to drive, but because you get a whole lot of raised heartbeats doing so. Audi has always been about efficiency, and it’s no different with the RS6 Avant.

A new batch of spy shots of the 2015 Mercedes M-Class has found its way onto my desk, making these the fourth set of photos we’ve seen of the German SUV since the first batch arrived in early December.

Compared to what we’ve seen, these photos of the M-Class come with an even deeper camouflage with pretty much every body panel covered in the hypnotic camo. But from what we’ve seen in the past, our initial notion that both the front and rear sections of the M-Class are going to be updated looks to be spot on.

Since the current generation model was revealed in 2011 as a 2012 model, you can notice that the front end has a more elaborate grille setup with more accessible openings for the air to cool the engine. The main grille looks to have been split in half, possibly to create a unique space for the Silver Arrows logo. The headlights also appear to be more rectangular in design compared to the swept back almond look of its predecessor.

As for the rear, it’s hard to make out any distinctive changes, given that the rear lights don’t look like they’ve been changed. But a particularly interesting tweak are the twin-tailpipes that are now on the front passenger side of the SUV.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Mercedes-Benz ML-Class.

Lexus ’ goal of becoming a player in the luxury market has received a shot in the arm with the arrival of the 2014 ES . Not only is it more dynamic looking, thanks to its adaption of Lexus’ new design ideology, but it also has all the luxury amenities and requisite technology to lock horns with the big boys of the market.

Say what you want about the 2014 ES 350, but you can’t deny that it has arrived and made its intentions known that it’s not going away anytime soon. The limited engine choices could be a drawback, given how versatile and generous other models are in in their drivetrain variety.

All that being said, though, the ES definitely qualifies as a true luxury contender. It’s revised looks and incredibly detailed interior is already enough to justify that billing.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Lexus ES 350.


Anytime you hear an upstart automaker promise the world and deliver little to nothing, you get disensitized with the hype these soon-to-be-unveiled exotics have. But something about Rezvani Motors is different, in large part because it’s set to debut a supercar with a ridiculously high bar attached to it. Rezvani is promising to shame other supercars with the Beast, an exotic we know very little about except for this one teaser photo the company has released.

Rezvani Motors has done a good job keeping the project under wraps, opting only to say that the Beast will make use of "lightweight racing technologies" to go with an engine that will "leave other supercars in the dust." Very, very strong words.

But if you’re thinking that Rezvani is drinking way too much hyperbole juice, the company remains unfazed about throwing out all these promises. After all, it has a car that, based on the teaser photo, appears to have the kind of sharp edges and ventilated components to make you wonder what exactly the Beast is all about.

We’re interested to see it, that much we can tell you. Whether it lives up to Rezvani’s claim that the Beast will be the "purest driving expericence" on the market today is still up to interpretation. Maybe with these claims, it’s not unreasonable to expect the Beast to put down around 1,000+ horsepower, right?

Updated 04/01/2014: Rezvani unveiled a second teaser image for the upcoming Beast supercar set to be unveiled in the upcoming months.

Click past the jump to read more about the Rezvani Beast.


How is it possible that Dodge’s flagship model, that being the 640-horsepower SRT Viper , may not even be the most powerful model in the entire lineup? For Chrysler , the answer might very well be tied up to what it does with its new "Hellcat" supercharged V-8 engine, specifically if it uses it to power the next-generation Dodge Challenger.

Should that be the case, it could prove prophetic to what SRT boss Ralph Giles told Hot Rod magazine. In the April issue of the mag, Giles talked about an "internal horsepower race" brewing within Dodge, one that could determine whether the Viper maintains its post as the brand’s flagship, or if it gets undermined by the next-gen Challenger .

It’s an interesting pickle to be in the middle of, especially if the Hellcat engine is everything it’s been hyped up to be. The company has made no bones about its plans for the Hellcat, with a recent leak of what could very well be an official Hellcat logo having made the Internet recently.

Every indication seems to point to the arrival of the SRT Challenger Hellcat within the year, and the word out is that it will come in a 6.2-liter, supercharged package, producing close to 700 horsepower, more than what the SRT Viper and its 640 ponies is capable of producing.

If that doesn’t smash eggs in the face of the Viper, then the potential demand for the SRT Challenger Hellcat would. With the Viper struggling to get its sales going , the last thing it needs is a competitor from within its ranks.

Note: Current Dodge Challenger pictured here.

Click past the jump to read more about the Dodge Challenger.


Knowing the technology that goes behind the development of a car like the 2015 Ford Mustang is important to understand why the car is what it is: a powerful piece of American engineering designed to thrill Mustang aficionados young and old. One of the more important elements about the development of the Mustang outside of its performance numbers is in the aerodynamic front, something Carl Widmann, the Mustang’s Aerodynamics Manager, touched on in this video.

The Mustang might look like an aggressively-designed muscle car that pays homage to its sporty spirits, but it’s no accident why the car was built that way. Take for instance the Mustang’s sharp nose, which Widmann describes as "forward-facing," allowing it to trap the flow of the air as it goes across the top, thus improving the car’s aerodynamic functionality.

If you’ve ever wondered why the Mustang can perform the way that it does in a seemingly uninhibited fashion, the answer lies in its aerodynamic features. It might be too complicated to understand for some people, but once you watch this video of Widmann describing the innovation in all its glory, you’ll begin to understand that the start and end of aiming for aerodynamic tightness is tantamount to building the perfect performance vehicle.

Click past the jump for the video and more details on the 2015 Ford Mustang.

Supercars boasting incredible horsepower aren’t anything new in the auto industry. But that’s what Trion Supercars is promising with the Nemesis, an exotic that’s promising returns of unimaginable proportions to the tune of 2,000 horsepower.

That’s not so much as a misprint as it is a call for high expectations. Trion Supercars is laying down the gauntlet with a vehicle that definitely looks the part of a modern-day supercar, complete with some unique features that should allow it to stand out in a market that doesn’t have any shortage of stomach-churning performance and mind-bending technology.

One of the more unique features of the Nemesis is its apparent convenience for tall drivers, something not a lot of exotics take into the equation when building their own supercars. But the Nemesis is different, in large part because of an interior package that can comfortably sit driver 6’4" and above. There’s also a package for the hardtop that can accommodate 7-footers comfortably.

If Trion Supercars intended the Nemesis for professional basketball players, it sure hit that niche right on the mark. If for nothing else, that’s a market that it can dominate for as long as it holds true to its promise.

Click past the jump to read more about the Trion Nemesis.


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