Believe it or not, Ducati has launched a Diesel Monster 1100 EVO. Trust us though, it’s not what you think. When we say Diesel, we’re speaking of the Italian clothing brand that sponsors the Ducati Team in MotoGP and has also launched a Ducati apparel collection so that riders can look fashionable on their new bike.
The 2012 Ducati Monster 1100 Evo was launched alongside the apparel collection on March 15, 2012 at the Diesel store in Soho, New York City. Ducati calls the bike "urban military chic." The exclusive ’Diesel Brave Green matte’ paint on the tank and rear fairing delivers a rugged military vehicle feel, especially while set against the black that covers almost every other part. To pay homage to the bike’s racing heritage, the shock and the Brembo calipers are painted yellow. Expect this bike to set you back a cool $13,795.
Leave a comment below and let us know what you think of the 2012 Ducati Monster Diesel 1100 EVO.
This awesome roadster was crowned America’s Most Beautiful Roadster for 2012 earlier this year at the 63rd annual Grand National Roadster Show. The custom 1927 Ford Track T Roadster, better known as the "Indy Speedster," is owned by Bill Lindig of Houston, Texas, and was built by SoCal Speed Shop in Pomona, California. The craftsmanship that went into this roadster is absolutely amazing. It features an Art Chrisman built small block engine. The 352ci Ford makes over 450HP and is mated to a Tremec T5 five-speed transmission. And don’t think for a second this is just a show car; Bill actually does drive the Indy Speedster.
The Indy Speedster project goes back 16 years. Bill’s friend, Indy car driver Jack Howerton, wanted a racecar-inspired hot rod like the old sprint cars he used to drive. About 12 years ago, Jack started the Chrome-moly chassis, but never finished. Later, he brought in Moal Coachbuilders, and they made some progress, but the car was still very far from complete. Finally, Bill asked Jack to sell him the roadster, and promised him it would get finished. Jack sold the car to Bill, Bill took it to SoCal Speedshop, and the rest is history. As you can tell from the video, no corners were cut and this hot rod was done right.
The Grand National Roadster Show, once known as the Oakland Roadster Show, is the longest running indoor car show in the world. It was held at the Fairplex in Pomona, California for the ninth consecutive year. The show features the best of the best when it comes to roadsters, and this year the Indy Speedster proved to be the absolute best.
Hit the jump to watch America’s Most Beautiful Roadster for 2012 on HOT ROD Unlimited
How do you write the word "Porsche," and make that word over 475 feet long? Well, obviously there is only one way; you take 48 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup Challenge Brazil race cars and line them up accordingly beside a massive Brazilian flag. Where do you accomplish something like this? On the finishing straight at Estoril Circuit in Portugal, of course.
This is exactly what happened on March 15, 2012. 180 people from the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Brasil team and the Portuguese staff of Estoril Circuit came together before the season opening race to get the perfect shot. The entire shoot took 23 hours, and the end result was this 3 minute 30 second video which includes helicopter shots and a time-lapse of the shoot. All that was left to do was write "Porsche" with rubber by having all 48 cars do simultaneous burnouts!
Check out the video to see the whole event take place, and don’t forget to let us know what you think in the comments section below.
General Motors has officially revealed the highly anticipated 2013 GMC Terrain Denali ahead of its public debut at the 2012 New York Auto Show. Not only does the Terrain finally get the Denali trim as an option for the 2013 model, but it also gets a bigger, more powerful engine. The current 264 HP 3.0L V6 option gets replaced with a new 301 HP 3.6L direct injected V6. Those who want to stick with the standard Ecotec 2.4L four-cylinder will get the best of both worlds; best in class fuel economy and, thanks to the Denali trim, the most luxurious SUV in its segment.
The Denali trim has been very successful for GMC vehicles, and the Terrain has been eagerly waiting to wear the Denali emblem ever since the very first one rolled off the assembly line in late 2009. The Terrain is already GMC’s hottest seller with the 2012 model’s sales up 37 percent from 2011, and adding the Denali trim will only boost sales further. Last year, over half of all GMC Yukons and Yukon XLs sold included Denali trim. GM global marketing chief Joel Ewanick calls Denali, which accounts for 15 percent of total GMC sales, "a brand within a brand."
The first Denali offering was revealed at the 1997 Detroit Auto Show with the 1999 Yukon Denali. It was GMC’s goal to set the Yukon apart from its Chevrolet counterpart. Over a decade later, GMC is still setting itself apart even though all of GMC vehicles are built on platforms shared with Chevrolet.
Updated 06/12/2012: Chevrolet announced today prices for the new 2013 Terrain Denali that will go on sale in the third quarter of this year. Prices will start from $35,350, including an $825 destination charge. Options like all-wheel drive can rise the base price to $37,100, while a V-6 can be paired with either drivetrain for an additional $1,500.
Hit the jump for more details on the 2013 GMC Terrain Denali.
In 2002, the first Dodge Ram Lone Star edition went on sale exclusively in Texas. You see, Dodge was banking on the idea that this special edition Ram would do well in terms of sales, since the Texas pickup market was so strong. Boy, were they right; the Lone Star model now makes up 30 to 40 percent of all Ram 1500s sold in Texas, and Ram has sold more than 80,000 units since the Lone Star’s debut.
Ram Truck has now unveiled a special 10th Anniversary edition of its Ram 1500 Lone Star. The 2012 Ram 1500 Lone Star 10th Anniversary edition will get an exclusive appearance package, which includes new, Texas-size “Lone Star” badges that will replace the “Ram 1500” badging. The truck is only available in Crew Cab configuration with bucket seats. Inside the 10th anniversary Lone Star, you’ll find Katzkin perforated leather seats with stylized Lone Star logos, as well as a 10th Anniversary Lone Star logos on the glove box and floormats.
The Ram Lone Star comes standard with the 5.7L HEMI V8, which delivers 390HP, 407ft.-lbs of torque, and 20 mpg. The power is transferred to the wheels by a 6-speed automatic transmission. The Lone Star also gets 20-inch aluminum wheels, a 115V auxiliary power outlet, a Class IV receiver hitch, a 10-way adjustable power driver’s seat, halogen quad headlamps, fog lamps, rear 60/40 split folding seats, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls. In addition to the many standard features, more than two dozen factory options and hundreds of Mopar accessories are available for buyers who want to make the Ram Lone Star reflect their personalities.
The Lone Star package is $1,500, giving the 2012 Ram 1500 Lone Star 10th Anniversary edition a starting price of $36,440. You will definitely see a lot of these trucks in Texas in 2012, since the Lone Star edition will be exclusively for sale in Texas at the end of second quarter.
CFC StylingStation, based in Neuss, Germany, has once again offered a tuning package for the Volkswagen Golf VI GTI. The once vinyl body specialists branched out in 2010 and tried their tuning skills on the 2010 Volkswagen Golf GTI, and now they’ve outdone themselves with the 2012 Volkswagen Golf GTI package. They call the finished product the Leitgolf. For 22,900 Euro, or about $30,000 USD, CFC StylingStation will not only upgrade the performance, but will also totally change the look of your 2012 Golf GTI.
After adding a Kerscher front bumper and widening the fenders by 2.5 cm, CFC gets to their area of expertise and wraps the body with matte grey vinyl. The Leitgolf’s roof gets high gloss carbon fiber vinyl, while the emblems, passenger’s side front fender, fuel door, and the inner part of the front bumper grille get covered with an awesome looking comic book style collage that CFC calls "Sticker Bombing." Vinyl lettering on the rear passenger glass simply reads "I Love Haters." CFC then adds a carbon fiber kit that includes a front lip spoiler, side sills, mirror caps, rear diffuser, and an engine cover.
Hit the jump for more details on the Volkswagen Golf VI GTI "Leitgolf" by CFC StylingStation.
The best-selling luxury performance car in the U.S., the Chevrolet Corvette, has finally been inducted into the Sebring Hall of Fame after six decades of proving what it can do on the track. The induction is a great birthday present for the Corvette, since 2013 marks its 60th anniversary.
Corvette first competed at Sebring in 1956, and 231 Corvettes have since competed in the Twelve Hours of Sebring race. Corvette has racked up an impressive 24 class wins in this legendary race, with seven of these won by Corvette Racing, the most successful team in the history of the American Le Mans Series. In Sunday’s 60th anniversary race, Corvette Racing placed second and third in the GT Class.
“We are thrilled that Sebring has recognized the success of the Corvette on the race track by inducting it into the hall of fame,” said Russ Clark, Chevrolet marketing director for Performance Cars.
“Even more important than the awards and race wins are the benefits to our production vehicles as a result of our racing programs,” said Clark. “We have been successful at transferring racing technology to the street, especially in our high-performance vehicles such as the Corvette ZR1, Z06 and our carbon fiber models, including aerodynamic, powertrain, chassis, braking, safety and design features.”
Riding in the backseat of a vehicle for mile after monotonous mile can be very boring, and we all know the feeling. Maybe it was when you were a child going on family vacations. Maybe it was this morning in the carpool lane. Maybe your children have now been passed the boredom torch. Well, now, General Motors is looking to change all that.
GM’s newest project, Windows of Opportunity(WOO), is a revolutionary new concept being worked on by students and researchers at Bezalel Academy of Art and Design in Israel. The goal is to give the backseat passengers something to do by making the rear windows virtually touchscreen computers using "smart glass" technology. Imagine driving through a long stretch of unchanging desert and being able to change the scenery to, say, New York City. Or maybe you would prefer playing an interactive game with passing vehicles. Maybe you just want to draw pictures on the window, in color! GM is hoping this will all be possible one day through a series of apps accessed by the touchscreen rear window.
WOO was inspired by studies suggesting that rear seat passengers feel disconnected from their environment. GM has no immediate plans to implement this technology into vehicles, but, for us, it can’t come quick enough. Some of us have little ones in the backseat and DVDs only work for so long! This, we think, would be a much welcomed feature in future vehicles.
Check out the video above and let us know what you think of WOO.
Ford has stated in a press release that the all-new 2013 Ford Escape will have a towing capacity of 3,500 pounds when equipped with the optional 2.0L EcoBoost engine. That’s a full 1,300 pounds more than the Escape’s closest competitor, the Volkswagen Tiguan, which is only capable of towing 2,200 pounds. The Kia Sportage and Acura RDX have tow ratings of 2,000 and 1,500 pounds, respectively.
The Ford Escape’s tow rating is around the same weight as two trailered personal watercrafts. This towing feat is made possible by the small SUV’s class-exclusive sway control and the four cylinder EcoBoost that is packing 237 hp and 250 lb-ft of torque. This turbocharged 2.0L engine is replacing the 3.0L V6 engine in the current Escape, amazingly with no loss of power and with fuel economy higher than the V6’s 19 city mpg and 25 highway mpg.
“Smaller-displacement engines have a fundamental efficiency advantage,” said Roger Maynard, powertrain supervisor for the 2013 Ford Escape. “These inherent efficiencies are improved with the EcoBoost technology of direct fuel injection and turbocharging.”
The 2013 Ford Escape will also offer two more four cylinder engines: the 1.6L EcoBoost delivering 177 hp and a naturally aspirated 2.5L that makes 171 hp. The Escape should hit showroom floors this spring, which is just in time to test out the towing capacity with your newest toys.
This 14-minute documentary features the Pagani Huayra and the companies that helped make it the beautiful combination of art and technology it has become. The video explores the Huayra’s air and wind inspired carbon fiber and titanium body design, the hand-built 6.0L twin-turbo AMG V12, the hand-assembled MHG custom tuned exhaust, the tailor-made Dani Group leather interior, and the 1000 components that are made by ASPA, including the Huayra emblem that is cut from a solid block of aluminum in a 24-hour process.
The Huayra is built with what are most likely the highest standards in the industry. Every part of this car is produced to utter perfection. Perhaps the most beautiful piece of technology on the Huayra is the active aerodynamics system: The car’s computer system monitors its behavior, and aerodynamic surfaces on all four corners of the car adjust accordingly, with the back two surfaces even acting as emergency brakes to assist the lightweight Brembos at high speed. This is not just a supercar; it is the supercar that the Ferrari F12berlinetta and Lamborghini Aventador dream about at night.
The Pagani Huayra’s V12 engine makes 700hp and 740lb-ft. of torque. The 2,970 lb. supercar is capable of hitting 230 mph, though Pagani Automobili focuses more on dynamic driving than top speed. The Huayra was supposed to hit the U.S. market this year, but the NHTSA forced a delay by blocking U.S. sales until advanced airbag systems are installed in every car. Pagani argued that implementing the advanced airbags would cost millions, but ultimately decided to spend the extra production money. The safer Pagani Huayra will likely go on sale in America in 2013 and is expected to cost a cool $1.4 million.
Let us know what you think of this amazing work of art in the comments below.
When Cadillac designers and engineers learned that full-size luxury sedan customers desire and expect more room for active lifestyle gear, they gave themselves an ambitious goal: Maximize the space in the upcoming 2013 Cadillac XTS to comfortably accommodate four adults and four golf bags.
“Our owners want to comfortably take four adults out for a round of golf and dinner afterwards,” said XTS Chief Engineer Sheri Hickok. “The challenge was to give customers what they expect in terms of interior spaciousness, comfort and luxury, but to do so without compromising exterior looks and handling dynamics.”
The final result of their efforts was almost 40 inches of rear legroom in the Caddy and a massive trunk measuring 18 cubic feet. In terms of space, this puts the Cadillac ahead of the Audi A8L, the BMW 7-series, and the Mercedes-Benz S-class. The country club credibility of the XTS is on display at the Cadillac Championship at the Doral Golf Resort and Spa in Miami, where four full Callaway golf bags and four adults fit into the Cadillac easily and with room to spare.
Security is something Cadillac takes seriously, so the contents of the trunk remain out of sight and behind a locked lid. And with more than a dozen storage compartments, the passenger cabin was also designed to keep valuables hidden. A space under the front center armrest can conceal a smartphone, and there is even a hidden compartment behind the advanced new Cadillac User Interface, known as CUE, that is accessed by a hidden button and motorized door.
Check out the video above that Cadillac has released, and see why the 2013 Cadillac XTS should be your vehicle of choice for future golf trips.
The 2012 Chevrolet COPO Camaro is no longer a concept. Chevrolet has announced that they will be building 69 COPO Camaros this year; the exact number of “ZL-1” COPO Camaros made in 1969. COPO, or Central Office Production Order, was Chevy’s high performance special-order system used in the 1960s by dealers to build high performance models. The new COPO Camaro will be a not-street-legal drag car with the sole purpose of competing in NHRA’s Stock Eliminator and Super Stock classes. This will put the new COPO Camaro in direct competition with the Ford Mustang Cobra Jet and the Dodge Challenger Drag Pak; this should be interesting.
For too long, Chevy has sat on the sidelines watching as Dodge and Ford, especially Ford, dominated in Stock Eliminator and Super Stock. The Cobra Jet and the Drag Pak have been proven winners in these NHRA classes for years. Bowtie fans have long wondered if Chevy would ever have an answer to the bad-ass factory-built race cars of its Detroit neighbors. That answer is finally coming. The Cobra Jet and the Drag Pak are no pushovers, though, so the new COPO Camaro will definitely have its work cut out.
The COPO Camaro’s biggest threat, the Ford Mustang Cobra Jet started at $91,900 in 2012 and boasts a supercharged 5.4L V8 under the hood, while the $39,999 2010 Dodge Challenger Drag Pak sports a 6.1L Hemi. For 2011, though, the Mopar Challenger Drag Pak upgraded drastically to a naturally aspirated 512ci V10 and upped the pricetag to $85,512. The 2012 COPO Camaro, starting at $89,000, has three engine options to choose from: a naturally aspirated 427ci V8, a 327ci V8 with a 2.9L supercharger, and a 327ci V8 with a 4.0L supercharger. All of the Big Three’s race cars are stripped-out versions of their former selves and are built to run in the NHRA. They are all sold race-ready and come complete with everything from roll cages to fuel cells in the trunk.
The 2012 COPO Camaro should be delivered to anxious customers sometime in the Summer of 2012, and, by the middle of the NHRA racing season, 69 lucky people should be taking on the Cobra Jet and the Drag Pak head to head. The new COPO Camaro will be the quickest Camaro Chevy has ever produced. This race car will re-ignite the legendary racing rivalry between Chevy, Ford, and Dodge that gearheads have followed for decades. Drivers, start your engines!
Hit the jump for a full list of COPO Camaro features.
Lighting really is important on all vehicles, but, on luxury vehicles, it can make or break the look of the entire car. In the case of the upcoming all-new 2013 Cadillac XTS luxury sedan, the dramatic lighting truly reflects the inspiration that went into this car. The XTS’s more than 20 separate light sources “greet” the driver in a choreographed sequence that is timed to the fraction of a second when cued by various triggers, such as the key fob, the doors, and the ignition switch.
The new XTS includes signature Cadillac vertical LEDs in the headlights and taillights, LEDs embedded in the door handles, and ambient lighting in and around the car’s perimeter. Not only does this lighting extend the car’s design, but it also brightens the perimeter of the car providing added security in dark parking lots and making the car easier to locate. Inside the XTS, cooler blue lights accent the car’s instruments while warmer lights highlight the passenger areas.
Cadillac designers have taken advantage of advances in LED technology, using lighting that conveys drama and space alongside functional benefits. Inside the XTS, cooler blue lights accent the car’s instruments while warmer lights highlight the passenger areas.
“The new LED offerings now provide a new palette of color to bring more dramatic lighting effects that have never been available before,” said Christos Roustemis, Cadillac interior designer. "We sketched each phase of the process to carefully choreograph how every important area inside and outside of the vehicle would come up and fade back down, similar to a production crew lighting a theater stage.”
Check out the video and let us know what you think about Cadillac’s awesome new signature lighting in the comments below.
How does Buick take a turbocharged two-door coupe and give it the ride comfort and stability for which they have always been known? Well, in the case of the 2011 Regal CXL Turbo, they didn’t. The torque steer was terrible and it just didn’t feel like a Buick. These issues, however, didn’t go unnoticed by the engineers. They knew that coming up with a new suspension for the 2012 Buick Regal GS was imperative, and it was back to the drawing board. They realized that this isn’t just your Grandfather’s Park Avenue. This car is young and sporty.
What they came up with is the HiPer Strut system. Short for High Performance Strut, this unique suspension system is a vast improvement. The added components enable the steering knuckle to rotate independently from the strut tower, creating a better separation between steering and shock absorption. This improves camber control and also maintains ideal suspension geometry. And now with the Buick Interactive Drive Control System, the driver can control the suspension stiffness through the "Sport" and "GS" buttons.
With HiPer Strut, the torque steer that was prevalent in the 2011 Regal is almost nonexistent now, and steering response and control are improved significantly. These enhancements allowed engineers to place a 270 horsepower turbocharged four cylinder in the Regal GS. This advanced 2.0L replaces the old 220 horsepower four-banger and has the highest horsepower-per-liter ratio General Motors has ever produced.
“HiPer Strut raises the limits of how a front-drive car can perform.” said Lead Engineer Bill Rietow.
Buick is not just for elderly ladies and gentleman anymore. They really are appealing to a broader base now and are making the changes necessary to please the younger crowd.
MR Car Design, in collaboration with BTS-Racing, has released a new aftermarket tuning package for the Volkswagen Golf V R32, which was produced from 2005 to 2008. The package starts with a R32 HPG turbo kit and a 3-inch sport exhaust system with valve control. After performance tuning, the Golf’s 3.2L engine makes a whopping 458 horsepower and 405 lb.-ft. of torque. That’s an amazing increase of over 210 horsepower and over 165 lb.-ft. of torque. To handle all that extra power, the tuning companies reinforced the DSG transmission.
The tuning doesn’t stop there. With the package, The Golf V also receives a KW Clubsport suspension kit, H&R stabilizers, and a Stoptech brake package. All the old bushings are replaced with Superpro bushings. The matte blue VW MR Car Design used to highlight their performance parts got fitted with 19-inch OZ Ultraleggera HLT matte alloy wheels wrapped in 225/35/ZR19 high performance tires.
Top speed and acceleration times have not yet been released. Check out the photos and leave a comment to let us know what you think of this souped up Volkswagen.
In 2010, NASCAR held a summit with representatives of Ford, Chevrolet, Dodge, and Toyota. They wanted to talk about returning brand identity to the cars on the track. You see, over the years, NASCAR race cars have strayed farther and farther from the appearance of the cars they are based on.
NASCAR originally appealed to manufacturers with a "Race on Sunday, sell on Monday" philosophy. But now when you tune-in to a Sprint Cup series race, you will basically see 43 of the same race car with vinyl stickers to let you know what car brand it is supposed to represent. NASCAR is now trying to change all that. They’ve relaxed some of their very strict rules for body design, allowing manufacturers to design the cars to look more like their road-going counterparts.
One car that has already released a rendering of it’s new body is the 2013 NASCAR Dodge Charger. Thanks to the new, more lenient rules, this car looks awesome. With the signature Charger character lines on the side, this race car looks more like the street version than ever. Sam Hornish, Jr. got to test the new NASCAR Charger at a closed test earlier this year at the Homestead-Miami Speedway that was attended by all four manufacturers.
“The car looks the best out of any of the new cars, that’s for sure — nice, sharp lines — and you can see a lot of the street car in the race car." said Hornish "It brings the Charger’s identity back onto the racetrack.”
The 2013 NASCAR Dodge Charger will be unveiled March 11, 2012 in the Neon Garage at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, just before the start of the Kobalt Tools 400. It will compete in its first Sprint Cup series race at next year’s Daytona 500.
UPDATE 03/12/11: The Dodge Charger NASCAR race car was officially unveiled over the weekend. Check out all the photos of the car in the gallery below!
If you’re a Porsche fan, then you’ve heard of Champion Motorsport. Along with performance parts, they’ve been producing the RG5 and RG5B forged monolite wheels for Porsche 911’s for years. Now it’s the new 991’s turn to sport these rims, and they look like they were meant for this car. Honestly, Porsche should sell their cars with these wheels already installed.
If you’ve bought a 2010 or newer 911, and you have the centerlock wheels option, then you already know that the RG5 and RG5B rims are out of the question for you. But what you probably didn’t know is that they have a RG5 look-a-like just for you. The RG72 forged monolite wheel has the same classic design as the RG5 with a few styling revisions, and, most importantly, they are centerlock wheels. Champion Motorsport also offers wheels for Cayman, Boxster, Panamera, and Cayenne models.
All Champion Motorsport wheels are made from a single piece of aluminum and forged in an 8,000 pound press. The end result is a 19 to 26 pound wheel, depending on width and diameter, that is much stronger than any multi-piece wheel on the market. Each wheel is finished in Brilliant Silver and features and diamond cut and polished outer lip.
Check out this awesome video of a Top Fuel dragster fuel pump at the Wally Parks NHRA Motorsports Museum in Pomona, CA. This super-cool setup is a Waterman Super Bertha fuel pump connected to an injector in a mock cylinder to show just how much nitro methane is pumped into an NHRA Top Fuel dragster engine. The Super Bertha is capable of pumping 8 gallons per minute to each of the eight cylinders. That’s 64 gallons per minute flowing into the 500 c.i. aluminum engine at full throttle.
A Top Fuel dragster makes around 8,000 horsepower. These 25 feet long rockets regularly catapult from 0-320 mph in around 3.8 seconds. That equates to 5 G’s of force on the driver at the starting line, and then 5 negative G’s on the driver when the parachute is deployed at the 1000 ft. mark. Around 6.5 gallons of nitro methane is burned in a full pass. The tires on these monsters have to be changed after every two passes and the engine is rebuilt after every single run.
Ford’s new ad spot for the 2013 Mustang made its National television debut during the 2012 Daytona 500. The ad, instead of showing off the vast number of improvements made for 2013, simply shows a 2013 Mustang rolling through city streets while morphing through different levels of customization as different people look at it.
“We know that Mustang owners are incredibly passionate about their car,” said Matt VanDyke, Ford’s Director of U.S. Marketing Communications. “Rather than just show features and benefits, our new ad demonstrates how people see the product as an extension of who they are. We believe that everyone has an inner Mustang just waiting to be unleashed.”
The idea for the commercial came, in part, from the massive success of the Mustang Customizer website and phone app. So far, over four million digital Mustangs have been created on the customizers.
“This ad was created to work in tandem with the success of our Mustang Customizer and downloadable app, which allows anyone to create their very own Mustang, selecting colors, accessories and decals to complement the amazing design,” said Lee Jelenic, Ford Car Marketing Communications manager. “Mustang owners are unique, independent, and like their cars to reflect their personalities. The Customizer site and this spot pay homage to that.”
Check out the commercial and let us know what you think of it in the comments section below.
When you talk about muscle cars, the name "Mustang" comes up a lot. And when you’re a car guy, you either love the Mustang or you hate it. Camaro fans almost always despise the Mustang, and likewise, Mustang fans curse the day the Camaro was born. I am one of the few, though, that is a fan of American cars in general. I love Chevrolet, Ford, and Dodge. America would be a very boring place for gearheads if these three brands did not create the muscle cars that they did. This is especially true for the Mustang.
On March 9, 1964, Ford’s assembly line in Dearborn, Michigan started production on a car that would change the entire industry. Just over a month later, people at the New York World’s Fair laid eyes on the very first pony car ever built. This new class of car spawned the birth basically every American muscle car from that point on. And now, 48 years later, the 2013 Ford Mustang GT is a work of art.
The legend continues...
Photos of the electric 2012 Infiniti EMERG-E Concept have finally been released, or should we say leaked? Most of us weren’t very impressed with the patent renderings of the car that were released earlier this month, but these new photos show just how sexy this car really is!
Not a whole lot is known about this mid-engine sports car, but we do know that it will be electric powered with a 1.2L internal combustion range extender. Infiniti says that their main goal is to create an "uncompromising" electric sports car that will offer "vivid performance" with zero emissions capability.
Infiniti Vice President, Andy Palmer, says that the car will be the first to highlight Infiniti’s new styling direction. They’re definitely headed in the right direction, because this car looks better than some super cars we’ve seen. Whether the EMERG-E will be rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive is, for now, only known by the engineers and executives at Infiniti.
The electric Infiniti EMERG-E concept will make it’s official debut at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show in early March. Until then, leave your comments below and let us know what you think of it.
Lexus has just released a video in which they let Alex Wurz loose on Estoril Circuit in Portugal in their $400,000 LF-A. What did Wurz do? Well, he enjoyed the supercar in the only way a former Formula 1 driver and two-time Le Mans winner knows how.
Wurz let all 552 horsepower go as he raced the supercar around the wet track, drifting through the corners and all. When asked what he thought about the car, Wurz said "I love it. I can just take the car and run away."
The Lexus LF-A is powered by a 4.8 liter V10 that delivers 552 HP at 9,000 RPM and 354 lb-ft of torque at 6,800 RPM, with 90% of the total torque being available between the 3,700 RPM mark and the super car’s 9,000 RPM red line. As a result of such a road torque curve, the LF-A can sprint from 0 to 60 MPH in just 3.7 seconds and won’t stop until it reaches a top speed of 202 MPH.
Check out the video and see the Lexus LF-A doing what it was built to do.
Danica Patrick hit the wall hard during the very last lap of Thursday’s first qualifying race for the Daytona 500. She was holding the number ten spot with two corners to go when Aric Almirola’s Ford veered left into her No.10 GoDaddy.com Chevrolet, sending her sliding to the inside wall. She hit the wall so hard that her car briefly left the ground.
“It felt pretty big,” Patrick said. “I don’t know what it looked like, but it felt pretty big.”
“It happened really quick,” she said. “When it gets down to the end of the race, everybody’s on each other’s doors really close. That’s what happens. Unfortunately, I was part of it.”
“We were looking to finish honestly,” Patrick said. “I felt comfortable. It was just a matter of getting into the right line with the right people. I’m just bummed out. We only had two corners to go.”
She climbed out of the wreckage uninjured, thanks in part to her taking her hands off the steering wheel just before impact. Wrist and hand injuries are very common in NASCAR when a driver crashes while tightly gripping the wheel. Despite the crash, Patrick still finished in 16th position.
In some good news, Danica returned to Daytona International Speedway on Friday in her backup car and won the pole position for Saturday’s Nationwide race. This makes her only the second woman to ever win a pole in NASCAR’s 64-year history. Patrick started her NASCAR Sprint Cup debut in 29th position at the Daytona 500 on Sunday, Feb. 26.
UPDATE 02/27/2012: For the first time in 54 years, the Daytona 500 has been postponed due to some scattered showers that moved in around race time. The race was supposed to be moved to today at noon, but the weatherman put a stop to that as well. If rain doesn’t get in the way again, the Daytona 500 will take place tonight at 7pm ET.
Bugatti has announced that they will be showing off their new Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse edition at the Geneva Motor Show. The roadster will be packing the same amazing 1,200 horsepower as the Veyron Super Sport, thanks in part to four turbochargers. The Veyron started out as a limited production vehicle, but the engineers at Bugatti keep coming up with a seemingly endless line of different versions of the supercar.
Bugatti has said that this Vitesse edition Veyron will be the most powerful roadster of all time. "The rapid success of the Bugatti Veyron Super Sport convinced us to increase the performance of the Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport roadster. Once again our engineers worked hard to demonstrate that Bugatti is able to constantly redefine the boundaries of what is technically feasible. We gave our all to transfer the achievements of the Super Sport over to the Grand Sport, thereby turning open-top driving itself into an extraordinary experience at high speed," explained Bugatti’s Wolfgang Durheimer.
It now seems that all cars set to unveil at the Geneva Motor Show will be somewhat overshadowed by this monster. While acceleration and top speed times have not been released, we can guess that the numbers will be pretty close to those of the Veyron Super Sport. I believe we can also safely say that this will be the funnest Veyron of all to drive.
The 2012 BMW M5 comes from the factory with a 4.4L twin-turbo V8 capable of 560 horsepower and 502 lb-ft of torque. This power catapults the M5 to 62 mph in just over four seconds. With these kind of numbers, there is no need for improvement, right? Well, the folks over a G-POWER would say otherwise.
The tuning company has released this single image of the latest G-POWER tuned M5. With a custom, stainless steel G-POWER exhaust system and a little ECU tuning, the G-POWER M5 puts out 640 horsepower. 0-62 mph is reached in 3.9 seconds while 0-124 mph is reached in only 11.9 seconds. Tuning under the hood is not the only work the company has done to the M5.
G-Power hooked up the BMW with a new fully adjustable coilover kit, bigger brakes, and some nice alloy rims. The 21-inch G-POWER "SILVERSTONE RS" wheels come wrapped in high performance Michelin Pilot Super Sport tires, measuring 265/30ZR21 up front and 305/25/ZR21 in the rear. G-Power has also announced that they are working on a successor for the 800 HP 2011 BMW M5 Hurricane RR, which has been clocked at 231 mph.
SRT has just posted another teaser image of the 2013 Viper, which shares it’s platform with the Mercedes-Benz SLS, on their official Facebook page. The mysterious photo seems to be of a carbon fiber scoop. Last month, SRT released a very dark picture of the front of the Viper and they’ve since released a sketch of the official new ’Stryker’ logo.
You can’t really tell from the pictures what exactly the new SRT will look like, but you can tell that it’s going to be awesome to say the least. In case your wondering why it’s not called a Dodge Viper anymore, well, it’s not a Dodge anymore. Chrysler has made SRT a standalone car brand and the Viper is going to be there flagship model.
Since the government mandates it, this is the first time in the model’s history that a Viper will come with traction control. No one yet knows what will power the new Viper, but rumors are circulating of an 8.7L V10. The 2013 SRT Viper will be revealed during April’s New York Auto Show. Until then, we’ll just have to hope for more teasers.
Ferrari’s chairman, Luca di Montezemolo, has stated in a company earnings report that the company’s next V-12 supercar will debut at the Geneva Motor Show in a few weeks. And this picture could show the rear of that car.
The photo has been circulating on Ferrari forums, and the lighting and exhaust placement looks pretty consistent with recent spy shots of 599’s successor. So, could this be the first picture of the new Ferrari with no camo?
Expect the V-12 to make massive horsepower. You can bet that this is going to be one of the main attractions at Geneva. Expect a lot more info on this monster from Maranello as we get closer to the Geneva Motor Show.
Nick Holms of Houston, Texas has completed his 1974 Chevrolet Nova street-legal drag car project. This is something that happens everyday; you take an old car of your choice, paint it, throw in a big engine and you’re ready to roll. This Nova is different, though. Instead of throwing in a big block Chevy, Nick chose to go rotary. To Chevy fans, this is a sin, but this car is bad.
He went with a Mazda 13B turbocharged rotary engine, the engine many consider the pinnacle of rotary power. The engine actually puts over 530 horsepower to the ground, though it sounds like a swarm of bees trapped in a beer can. The Nova was just filmed running the quarter-mile in 11.03 seconds @ 125 mph.
Check the video out at http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=EUhz2MjT1fE
Porsche has picked a name for what they are calling a sports car in the SUV segment: an off-road car, if you will. The Macan will start rolling off the production lines in Leipzig in 2013. Porsche says that the name Macan is "derived from the Indonesian word for tiger and combines suppleness, power, fascination and dynamics."
“The Macan combines all sports car characteristics with the benefits of a SUV and is a genuine Porsche”, said Bernhard Maier, Executive Vice President Sales and Marketing of Porsche AG. “The name of a new Porsche has to fit with the brand, sound good in very many languages and dialects and evoke positive associations.”
The Macan will share it’s platform with the Audi Q5. It will be assembled at the Porsche plant in Leipzig, Germany, which is undergoing a $650 million dollar expansion. Porsche is hoping that the Macan will be as successful as the Cayenne. Expect the Porsche Macan to be sold at the end of 2013 as a 2014 model.
The SRX is Cadillac’s biggest seller. It is also the number two luxury midsize crossover in the market, so it’s no surprise that Cadillac is not making any major changes to the 2012 SRX. Well, that is, except for one. If there was one complaint customers had about previous SRXs, it was about the less than impressive power. Cadillac’s answer: the 3.6-liter V6 from the CTS.
The new 3.6L will be the only available engine in the 2012 Cadillac SRX. It replaces the 2.8L, 2.8L turbo, and the 3.0L. Making 308 horsepower and 265 lb-ft of torque, the crossover SUV’s new engine is more powerful than even the discontinued 2.8L turbo. The 3.6L has 16 percent more horsepower than the last years 3.0L. Since that extra power can really bring down your mpg, Cadillac has added an ECO mode that alters shift points in the transmission to save around 1 mpg. The EPA rates the 2012 SRX at 17/24 mpg city/highway, and those numbers drop to 16/23 mpg if you opt for the all-wheel drive version.
While it is not the 403 horsepower 6.2L V8 found in it’s bigger sibling, the Escalade, this 3.6L V6 really does the new SRX justice. The power really matches the vehicle now and the throttle is more responsive. The 2012 Cadillac SRX will most likely continue to be Cadillac’s biggest seller through the rest of the year and for as long as Cadillac keeps making the improvements necessary to compete globally.
The B2K Corvette is back.
From 1987 to 1991, Callaway sold the twin-turbo RPO B2k Corvette. This was the only time that a car produced outside of GM held a regular production code (RPO). This meant that you could order the B2K from select Chevy dealers as an option. It was thought that an outside company would never hold a GM RPO again.
Now, twenty-five years later, it’s back. You can again select the B2K option and receive a 2012 Callaway Corvette 25th Anniversary Limited Edition. The option will only be available on the Grand Sport, and only 25 will be produced. The Grand Sports will roll off the Corvette assembly line in Bowling Green, Kentucky, in April and be sent to Callaway for final assembly.
Upgrades known so far will be a Callaway supercharger system, new suspension parts, a Callaway Double-D exhaust system, carbon fiber body components, and Callaway black chrome wheels wrapped in Michelin PS2 ZP tires. The B2K will only be available with Cyber Grey Metallic paint with a Carbon Flash roof. The B2K will also be available as a convertible.
The 2012 Callaway Corvette 25th Anniversary Limited Edition will be officially unveiled on April 23 at the Callaway Dealer Summit in Bowling Green, Kentucky. Specs on this beast are not yet known, but expect a full review soon.
Kia has just released sketches of the sedan codenamed "KH". It will go on sale in Korea in the first half of this year and is the company’s first rear-wheel drive vehicle. It will share it’s platform with the Equus, which is Hyundai’s top-of-the-line RWD sedan.
According to a press release issued this weekend by Kia, the KH sedan will be sold around the world. Kia Motors America has not yet confirmed that the KH will be sold in the U.S., but it seems very likely since nearly 500,000 Kia vehicles were sold in the states last year.
Soon-Nam Lee, Kia’s overseas marketing chief, has said, “Although launch timings for overseas markets are yet to be confirmed, this all-new rear-wheel drive large sedan will definitely become the leading model of our lineup around the world, showcasing the best of the best of Kia.”
This top-of-the-line sedan will be Kia’s new flagship model, filling the slot above the Optima. The KH likely be powered by a V8 paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission. There is no word yet on what will be the official name. Expect a full review when this new Kia is released.
Hitting GMC dealerships later this year will be the 2013 GMC Terrain Denali. Denali is the highest trim level available on GMC vehicles. This is the only logical next step for GMC’s hottest vehicle. Sales are up 37 percent on the Terrain already, and adding Denali trim has proven itself as a sales booster.
The first Denali offering was revealed at the 1997 Detroit Auto Show with the 1999 Yukon Denali. It was GMC’s goal to set the Yukon apart from it’s Chevrolet counterpart. Over a decade later, GMC is still setting itself apart from Chevy even though all of GMC vehicles are built on a shared platform.
Though the Denali line is not as exclusive as it once was, it is still a big seller. Last year, over half of all GMC Yukons and Yukon XLs sold included Denali trim. GM global marketing chief Joel Ewanick calls Denali, which accounts for 15 percent of total GMC sales, "a brand within a brand." Expect to see a full review of the 2013 GMC Terrain Denali soon.
Seven-time NHRA Top Fuel champion Tony Schumacher showed up to Auto Club Raceway at Pomona today for qualifying, but he’s not happy. He really wanted to debut the new hardtop that his team, owned by Don Schumacher Racing, has come up with for his U.S. Army dragster.
The state-of-the-art, bulletproof canopy, made of kevlar and carbon fiber, is a safety advancement that could revolutionize the sport. But the NHRA has yet to approve it. And now, rival Top Fuel teams are saying that the canopy would give Tony an unfair advantage because it makes his dragster more aerodynamic. That’s not the point, though, says Schumacher.
"This isn’t about performance. This is about safety," Schumacher said. "I want every driver to have one. We aren’t hiding anything. Everything we’re doing is for the better of everybody."
"It’s a no-brainer. I’m going to show up in Pomona and not be allowed to use it. I’m not comfortable without it, but it has to be approved. I understand that. I just hope they do it quickly. I feel safer in it. So let everybody have it. Do whatever, but keep me safe. That’s it. That’s all I ask for."
Schumacher has had his share of horrible crashes, and has even had good friends die on the track. Darrell Russell was killed in 2004 when a part of his car flew into the cockpit and hit his helmet. Tony even recalls, on two separate occasions, hitting birds with his front wing at 300 mph. "If those birds would have hit my helmet, I probably wouldn’t be here today."
Glen Gray, NHRA’s vice president of technical operations, totally agrees with Don Schumacher Racing this would be a great safety advancement on Top Fuel dragsters, but he has to follow the approval process on any new equipment submitted by teams. He is hopeful that all Top Fuel dragsters will be running the $15,000 canopy by the end of this season.
The Maybach will be no more in 2013 as Daimler will shutter the brand for good. This is a move that should have happened years ago since the ultra-luxury car company lost almost $439,000. Wait, did I say $439,000? What I meant was $439,000 on every single Maybach sold. So, how many were sold in it’s seven year production run? 3,000.
Since you’re still trying to do the math in your head; I’ll just spell it out for you. $1.3 billion dollars. Not only did the Maybach fail to compete with Bentley and Rolls, but they also became one of the biggest failures in automotive history. When the Maybach first launched, Daimler expected to sell a couple thousand every year. In 2010, 63 were sold in the U.S.
The demise of the long, overpriced Maybach may not be all bad news though. In order to fill the gap, Mercedes will start selling ultra luxurious trims on the S-Class. And with the market for $200,000 plus cars only growing, we can probably expect to see even more luxury models from Mercedes. So, don’t be sad all you 1 percenters out there, because you will always be able to find that ridiculously overpriced, luxury sedan to park in your fifteen car garage.
The 2013 VW Beetle TDI, unveiled this week at the Chicago Auto Show, will go on sale this summer. This will be the third model released in the current Beetle lineup, and the only Clean Diesel offering in the compact coupe category. VW has estimated the fuel economy to be 39 mpg on the highway and 29 mpg in the city. Pricing will be announced sometime before launch.
Drivetrain & Suspension
The TDI is powered by the 2.0-liter turbocharged, direct-injection Clean Diesel engine that makes 140 horsepower and 236 lb-ft of torque.This engine features a cast-iron cylinder block and an aluminum-alloy cylinder head. It also utilizes design elements that contribute to longevity and the reduction of noise, vibration, and harshness.
Bolted to the engine is either a six-speed manual transmission or the innovative, dual-clutch DSG six-speed automatic. DSG combines the ease of an automatic with the economy of a manual. The six-speed DSG transmission features two wet clutches with hydraulic pressure regulation. One clutch controls first, third, fifth and reverse gears, while the other operates second, fourth, and sixth. DSG is essentially two gearboxes in one.
The suspension is a strut-type with a lower control arm and a 22mm anti-roll bar. In the rear, there’s a torsion beam with coil springs and telescopic dampers. The TDI uses rack-and-pinion steering with electric power assistance.
Braking the Beetle TDI are 11.3 inch vented front discs and 10.7 inch rear disc brakes. Anti-lock brakes (ABS) with electronic brake pressure distribution (EBD) are standard on all Beetles.
The 2013 Volkswagon Beetle TDI will be available in three self explanatory trims: TDI, TDI with Sunroof, and TDI with Sunroof, Sound, and Navigation. All three will be very well equipped, with standard features such as power windows, cruise control, V-Tex Leatherette seating, three auxiliary gauges, Keyless entry with push-button start, a leather-wrapped multifunction steering wheel with audio controls, Bluetooth, and a Media Device Interface with iPod cable.
The top of the line TDI with Sunroof, Sound, and Navigation features the RNS 315 navigation system that has a five-inch touchscreen display. The Fender Premium audio system that offers concert quality sound is also included. This 400 watt system includes an additional subwoofer that covers the cabin with directional sound.
Safety and Warranty
Electronic Stability Control (ESC) is standard in the Beetle TDI, as are driver and front passenger airbags and Side Curtain Protection airbags in front and back. It also includes Volkswagen’s advanced Intelligent Crash Response System that shuts off the fuel pump, unlocks the doors, and switches on the hazards if the car is involved in certain types of collisions.
The Beetle TDI is also covered under the free Carefree Maintenance Program. All scheduled maintenance is covered for the length of the New Vehicle Limited Warranty, which is three years or 36,000 miles.
In my opinion, this will be the best Beetle to date. The options are great, the fuel economy is excellent, and the semi-circle exterior styling is finally gone. Though the domed roof is not as pronounced as the super feminine 1998-2010 New Beetle, there is still plenty of headroom in front and back. The turbo diesel engine and auxiliary gauges complete the TDI as a guy’s car, something the Beetle has not been for a long time.
As long as the NHTSA exempts the Swedish automaker from having Smart airbags, we should expect to see the Koenigsegg Agera for sell in the U.S. in June. Smart airbags require weight sensors in the front passenger seat to detect children, and deploy the at varying speeds depending on the crash dynamics. CEO Christian Von Koenigsegg said in a letter to the Department of Transportation last May: “The Koenigsegg vehicle, a $1.32 million ultra high performance sports car, is simply not typically used to carry child seats or small children.” While this statement may be true, the Agera still must clear this last hurdle before it can be sold in America.
In case you’ve never heard of the Agera, (yeah, right!) it’s the 245 mph rocket that makes over 940 horsepower on pump gas. 0-62 is achieved in 3 seconds. And now for the good part; rumor has it that the model to be sold in the U.S. in June is actually the 1,115 horsepower, E85 guzzling, 1.6 lateral g pushing, 0-300-0 km/h Guiness World Record holder. Yes, I’m talking about the 261 mph 2012 Koenigsegg Agera R. This will indeed bump up the $1.32 million dollar price tag, but it will also bump up my level of anticipation as I patiently wait for that passing glance of this twin-turbo technological marvel.
The 650 horsepower 2013 Ford Shelby GT500 convertible will debut today at the Chicago Auto Show. This comes twenty years after the unveiling of the 1993 SVT Mustang Cobra at the same venue. The ’93 Cobra made a now unimpressive 235 hp. 415 horses later and the automotive world is awestruck from the power of this beast.
The topless GT500 has the same supercharged engine as it’s coupe counterpart, and it’s the most powerful production V8 in the world. And even though it is limited to 155 mph, the drop-top Shelby still beat the 2012 GT500 around Sebring International Raceway by 3.5 seconds. This may come as no surprise to some, since the 2013 model makes 100 more horsepower!
Helping push the ridiculous 650 hp and 600 lb-ft of torque to the pavement is an upgraded six-speed transmission and a carbon fiber driveshaft. SVT has fitted the GT500 convertible with Bilstein electronic adjustable dampers, however this is part of the optional Performance Package. Also offered by Ford is the Track Pack that includes an external oil cooler, differential cooler, and transmission cooler to keep temperatures down during the inevitable bout with the upcoming convertible ZL1.
Lingenfelter Performance Engineering has released two new tuning kits for the Chevrolet Camaro. The first of the two, called Signature Series 1, mainly consists of graphics and a complete body kit and is available on both the V6 Camaro and the SS. The Camaro’s interior gets upgraded with aluminum pedals, embroidered seats, an in-house made leather shift knob, and a unique LPE number plaque. Performance modifications include a Pedders suspnesion and a Magnaflow high performance exhaust system.
Signature Series 2 will really make your Camaro SS come alive. The tuners at Lingenfelter add a fuel pump voltage booster, Corsa stainless-steel exhaust, LPE high-flow intake, and a Magnuson intercooled TVS2300 supercharger to the LS3 for a total of 600 horsepower. This is enough power to make even the ZL1 nervous! Signature Series 2 also features a set of Brembo brakes behind the 20 inch Lingenfelter forged alloy wheels. The suspension gets upgraded to a full Lingenfelter Coil-Over suspension system.
Lingenfelter, as always, guarantees their work and will provide a dyno report as well as a three-year/36,000-mile warranty for peace of mind as you tear through the streets in this highly modified monster.
Porsche Cars North America has announced that the all new, seventh generation 2012 911 Carrera and Carrera S models have arrived in showrooms across the United States. Though 90 percent redesigned, they are unmistakeably 911’s. These newest members of the iconic Porsche family have been improved upon from the previous year models in every aspect.
“Whether this will be a customer’s first or just their latest Porsche 911, it’s going to be the most invigorating ownership experience yet,” said President and CEO of Porsche Cars North America, Detlev von Platen. “The 911 Carrera and Carrera S are the ultimate choices for drivers who want the fun and excitement of a true benchmark-setting sports car week in and week out, not just for show or play during the weekends.”
The 911 Carrera is sporting the new, 350 horsepower, 3.4-liter boxer engine and can hit 60 mph in 4.4 seconds. The 911 Carrera S is equipped with the 400 horsepower, 3.8-liter boxer engine and races to 60 in an impressive 3.9 seconds with the Sports Chrono Package Plus option installed. Top speed is 179 mph for the 911 Carrera and 188 mph for the 911 Carrera S. Expect to shell out at least $82,100 for the 911 Carrera, while the 911 Carrera S will start at $96,400.