2012 Lexus LF-A Nurburgring Package
The Lexus LFA Nurburgring Package is the last hurrah of a truly special car, the first and, so far, only supercar built by Lexus. It is a lighter, more agile and, overall, faster version of the oh-so-loud LFA that dried up Toyota’s pockets only to be regarded at the time of its arrival as "too expensive for what it offers." Now, as the years have passed, more and more car guys and journalists started to come around and appreciate the Nurburgring-honed LFA for what it is, a very charismatic supercar.
Everyone knows about the LFA’s enormous development time that spanned almost a decade as Lexus switched from its original plans of building it around an aluminum monocoque and decided upon a carbon fiber structure that, in turn, called for updates to be made at the Motomachi plant that wasn’t ready to build a CFRP car. To this day, it’s unclear precisely how much Toyota actually spent to make the LFA a reality, but we reckon that the reason behind the secrecy lies in the obscenity of the sum.
As a swansong to the LFA, Akio Toyoda, Toyota’s CEO and one of the key people in the creation of this halo model, greenlighted a batch of 50 track-focused examples that came with the "Nurburgring Package." This package included changes to both the bodywork and the internals, changes that came about after years of testing and racing around Germany’s famed Nurburgring-Nordschleife circuit in the Eifel Mountains.
The Lexus LF A was an Oddity in the supercar world but an absolute gem at the same time. When it was released in 2011, it came complete with a 4.8-liter V-10 that delivered a cold-hearted (especially for a Lexus) 560 horsepower. Just a year later, Lexus decided to get a little more exclusive and created the LF-A Nurburgring Edition – a car that was destined to conquer the infamous track and set a new record lap time. And, it did, running the track in just 7 minutes and 14 seconds, enough to beat out the Porsche 911 GT2 RS, Corvette ZR1, and the Dodge Viper ACR at the time. Lexus only created 50 examples of the LF A Nurburgring edition, all of where were either black, white, or orange. Since it’s been nearly seven years since the LF A’s conquering of the Nurburgring, we’ve decided to show it a little love and make it our wallpaper of the day. Go ahead and download our hand-picked favorite or choose something else you might like from the gallery at the bottom of the page.
This is the voguish OSSA Monocasco
If you find that name weird, don’t coax yourself. Even I needed a while to familiarize myself with the Spanish brand.
Active for a very brief period from 1924 to 1982, OSSA (Orpheo Sincronic Sociedad Anónima) first made movie projectors and then shifted to being a motorcycle manufacturer only in 1949 that was best known for producing lightweight, two-stroke-engined bikes used in observed trials, motocross, and enduro.
Paying tribute to the brand and the OSSA 250 Monocasc GP motorcycle, the folks at a Barcelona design company concocted an electric concept bike that according to my tastes is the most soothing looking thing ever made on two wheels. It is almost as if your eyes can just flow over those curves. It’s called the Monocasco.
The Lexus LFA Has Yet To Sell Out
We’ve seen how some models in the industry can sell out faster than it took for me to complete this sentence. The new Porsche 911 GT2 RS is sold out. The Aston Martin Valkyrie is sold out. There are countless other cars whose demand far outweighed the supply. So the question begs: why hasn’t the Lexus LFA, a supercar that was as groundbreaking as anything that was released seven years ago, not sold out yet?
It’s a fascinating question that’s going to beg for answers, and we have Autoblog to thank for even making the question relevant, to begin with. Apparently, a Lexus sales report from July 2017 came with a fascinating statistic behind it: an LFA was sold last month. Intrigued, the publication reached out to Toyota and the Japanese automaker confirmed that U.S. dealerships still have 12 LFAs in their inventories, all of which are still classified as brand new. This is very revealing information that runs counter to past reports that dating back to 2012 that only 10 LFAs were still available. Apparently, there’s a few more of them around, but getting one may not be as easy as it sounds. After all, the LFA was priced at $375,000 when it was released, so there’s no telling how much one model costs today. Even if you do have that kind of money at your disposal, there’s no guarantee that any one of these dealers that still have an LFA will sell them to you for one reason or another. Chalk this one up then to one heck of a long callback to one of the most exciting supercars to hit the scene in the early part of this decade.
Continue after the jump to read the full story.
A Brace Of Woes For Kawasaki Motors Off-Road Division
Kawasaki announces the voluntary recall on a handful of its off-road products for a couple of different reasons. Both of these recalls expose a chink in the anti-terrain armor on almost 59,000 units sold in North America. First up we have approximately 28,000 side-by-side units sold between July 2014 and June 2016 from the 2015 through 2017 YM Mule Pro-FX/FXT and the Mule Pro-DX/DXT families. This bundle of trouble is closely followed by something around 30,094 Teryx and Teryx4 from a spread of years, specifically; 2012-13 Teryx4 750 4x4 units with four seats as well as the two- and four-seat variants of the 2014 through 2016 Teryx 800 4x4 range that were sold between November 2011 and November 2015.
Continue reading for more on the Kawasaki recalls.
2009 - 2017 Nissan 370Z
When it comes to sports cars from the Land of the Rising Sun, the Nissan Z is one of the best. As far back as the ‘60s, the Z has captured the hearts and minds of enthusiasts worldwide thanks to its timeless good looks, traditional drivetrain layout, sonorous six-cylinder exhaust note, and giant-slaying performance potential, all of which is offered at an affordable price point. The latest iteration is the Z34, a.k.a. the 370Z, which bears the same attributes as its predecessors, but with modernized packaging. Summed up, the 370Z gets slick styling, updated cabin tech, RWD handling, and a solid amount of thrust, making it a 21st-century performance-machine worthy of the letter Z.
Unlike most manufacturers, Nissan did it right when designing its next-gen sports car. Compared to the previous generation (the 350Z), the 370Z gets smaller dimensions and lower weight, plus increased chassis rigidity and higher engine output – exactly the right combo when aiming to please throngs of enthusiasts. Over time, Nissan added new features and trim levels to broaden the Z’s appeal, but kept the original’s hardcore attitude for customers who demanded it. These days, the Z needs to evolve, which is a tricky proposition for a model bearing nearly five decades of history. For now, though, read on for a look at the newest version of Nissan’s classic two-door.
Updated 07/10/2017: Nissan announced minor equipment and pricing updates for the 2018 model year 370Z.
Continue reading to learn more about the 2009 – 2018 Nissan 370Z.
Speedriven Took an Audi R8 V10 and Turned it Into a 1,000 Horsepower Monster
Speedriven is based out of Palatine, Illinois and has been making quite a splash lately with its insane upgrades to some of the finest cars out there. In the past, we’ve brought you reviews of a 2011 Mercedes E-Class V12 the 2011 Mercedes S600, and my personal favorite – the 1,000 horsepower V-12 CL600 that we reviewed back in November of 2015. Mercedes isn’t the only brand Speedriven specializes in, though. They also have programs for various Lamborghini models and several Audi models as well.
The vehicle in question here is a 2012 Audi R8 V10 that, after being caressed by the techs over at Speedriven, has broken records at the race track – twice in one day – as a matter of fact. The most insane fact about this R8 isn’t necessarily that it broke records on the dragstrip, but the fact that Speedriven was able to more than double the horsepower of the R8 without breaking into the engine. Now that is certainly something to write home about.
So how did the guys over at Speedriven manage to muster so much power out of the R8’s 5.2-liter engine? Well, it surely wasn’t easy, but keep reading to find out.
Ladies and gentlemen, the wait is over! After months of speculation, Lotus has finally unveiled the new Exige S. This "ultimate lightweight high performance sportscar" comes bearing a new look inside and out, as well as a brand new engine that adds over 100 HP to the car’s output.
The look of the 2012 Lotus Exige S still claims it as an Exige, but the add-ons provided smooth out the sports car’s look, while still adding a certain degree of aggression to the design. The Exige S now carries a new front splitter that reveals a cleaner line across the front of the car and a smaller rear spoiler, both of which still improve the vehicle’s aerodynamics.
As for power, the Exige S is now working with a mid-mounted, transverse 3.5 liter DOHC V6 VVI-i engine that delivers a total of 345 HP, a far cry from the previously used 257 HP 1.8L Toyota supercharged I4. The reason for this massive upgrade is clear when the car’s weight gets introduced into the equation. The previous model claimed 2,077 lbs, while the new Exige S plumps up at 2,380 lbs. Once the added weight gets brought in, the Exige S’ 0-60 mph time is still better, coming in at 3.8 seconds (from a previous time of 4.0 seconds) and its top speed hikes up to 170 mph (up from a previous 145 mph).
Lotus will also be offering a Lotus DPM (Dynamic Performance Management) switch that allows the driver to switch between three driving modes: Touring, Sport, and DPM off. An optional Race Pack also gets thrown in to add a fourth driving mode (Race) to the mix, for the ultimate Lotus Exige S experience.
Updated 10/24/2014: Lotus just announced that the Exige S will alsobe offered with an automatic transmission. The new option will add about $3k to the car’s final list, but it’s a pretty nice addition if you’re not too anxious about driving with a stick. Details after the jump.
Hit the jump to read more about the new Lotus Exige S.
After revealing the ILX Concept at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show in January, Acura has quickly followed it up with the production version at the 2012 Chicago Auto Show. Carrying the same ILX name, the new sedan will be offered with a choice of two different engines, as well as a Hybrid version for those with a particular love for the environment.
The Acura ILX addresses the young buyers that are looking for their first luxury vehicle. Acura has promised the ILX will be a cheaper alternative to models like the Buick Verano and the Audi A3.
"First-time luxury buyers tend to place a high value on exterior styling, affordability and environmental issues, and that’s what we have created with the new Acura ILX," said Jon Ikeda, head of the Acura Design Studio. "The strategy behind this new model is to position ILX as the first opportunity for many young buyers to enter the luxury market."
Updated 06/17/2014: Acura announced prices for the 2015 ILX which continues to be offered with the same features as the 2014 model year. The only change includes a new Modern Steel Metallic exterior paint that replaces the Polished Metal Metallic.
Hit the jump to read more about the 2013-2014 Acura ILX.
Any motorcycle is more enjoyable when its fit, function and styling are a perfect match to its owner. To help its customers achieve this goal, Harley-Davidson offers H-D1, a comprehensive set of customization tools that can be used by those purchasing a new Harley-Davidson motorcycle, and riders who wish to update a Harley they already have on the road. Available on Harley-Davidson.com and at authorized Harley-Davidson dealerships, H-D1 offers almost unlimited opportunities to turn a Harley into a custom of one, a motorcycle that is truly personalized to its owner.
The CVO Ultra Classic Electra Glide takes luxury to new heights with a suspended, dual-control heated seat, adjustable passenger backrest with lumbar support; plush lined Tour- Pak luggage, saddlebags and more.
The CVO Ultra Classic Electra Glide is built on the innovative Harley-Davidson Touring chassis, based on a single-spar, rigid backbone frame and swingarm developed to withstand the demands of long-haul touring riders.
Hit the jump fore more information on the Harley-Davidson CVO Ultra Classic Electra Glide.
Harley-Davidson Custom Vehicle Operations (CVO) emphasizes exclusive styling and inspiring performance with four limited-production motorcycle models for 2012. Decked out with bold paint, gleaming chrome, high-output audio and the most-powerful V-Twin engines offered in production Harley-Davidson motorcycles, each CVO model is a rolling object of desire for the discerning motorcyclist.
The Harley-Davidson CVO Softail Convertible is a limited-production custom motorcycle that can be configured for all-day touring, two-up cruising or solo profiling by adding or detaching key components, which can be easily removed or installed without tools.
Power comes from an air-cooled, Twin Cam 1802 engine which sends power to the rear wheel through a six speed cruise drive transmission. The Softail rear suspension mimics the clean lines of a vintage hardtail frame, but offers the comfort of modern suspension that is hidden under the chassis.
Hit the jump for more information on the 2012 Harley-Davidson FLSTSE3 CVO Softail Convertible.
With its classic design, the Harley Davidson CVO Road Glide Custom is considered one of the most wanted hot rod touring models in its class. The 2012 Harley-Davidson FLTRXSE CVO Road Glide Custom is offered with an exclusive multi-color paint scheme, a new high-output sound system and a host of fresh custom components.
Its distinctive feature is the shark-nose which not only protects the rider from wind, but also gives the entire bike a pretty unique look. Then, there is the strong, air-cooled, Twin Cam 110 engine, which is mated on a 6-Speed Cruise Drive gearbox and delivers a combined fuel consumption of 41 mpg.
The CVO Road Glide Custom is built on the innovative Harley-Davidson Touring chassis, based on a single-spar, rigid backbone frame and swingarm developed to withstand the demands of long-haul touring riders.
Hit the jump for more information on the 2012 Harley-Davidson FLTRXSE CVO Road Glide Custom.
The Road King Classic model takes the nostalgic look and feel of the Road King a little further with extra details for this road-worthy touring bike, like leather-wrapped saddlebags, chrome fuel tank console, tooled metal detailing on the fender, tank, seat and bags, and chrome laced wheels with wide whitewall tires.
The motorcycle is built on Harley-Davidson’s innovative touring chassis which is based on a single-spar, rigid backbone frame and a stout swingarm. The ride quality is assured by a front 41.3 mm telescopic fork and a rear air-adjustable shock absorber.
Power comes from a 1690 cc air-cooled, twin cam 103 engine with Integrated Oil-Cooler and Fuel System Electronic Sequential Port Fuel Injection (ESPFI). Power is sent to the rear wheel through a six speed cruise drive gear box and the combined fuel consumption is rated at 42 mpg.
Hit the jump for more information on the 2012 Harley-Davidson FLHRC Road King Classic.
The Harley-Davidson Road King was launched in 1994, but shortly after it managed to become a benchmark in its segment. The 2012 Harley-Davidson FLHR Road King looks like a timeless boulevard cruiser, but it is also a fully equipped, long-distance tourer.
As far as comfort goes, the 2012 Harley-Davidson FLHR Road King features a detachable windshield, an air-adjustable touring rear suspension and a comfortable seating position. You also get a set of spacious, standard saddlebags.
The Harley Davidson Road king is equipped with a 1690 cc Twin Cam 103 engine which sends power to the rear wheel through a 6-Speed Cruise Drive transmission. The engine’s fuel consumption is rated at 42 mpg.
Other features worth noting are the optional anti-lock braking system, Harley-Davidson’s Smart Security system, a six-gallon fuel tank and the electronic cruise control.
The bike is offered in a wide range of colors including Vivid Black, Big Blue Pearl, Midnight Pearl, Ember Red Sunglo/Merlot Sunglo.
Hit the jump for more information on the 2012 Harley-Davidson FLHR Road King.
Much like its sister company, Hyundai, Kia has been designing cars that not only offer its customers low-cost options to higher-priced brands, but also cars that offer high-quality workmanship and stylish appearances. We all knew that the Kia Forte is going to be up for a significant redesign when its 2014 model year debuts at the 2012 LA Auto Show, but we were not too sure what direction Kia would take it.
But now that the covers have been officially pulled and we have our answer.
We want to say that the Forte blew us away, but that just wouldn’t be fair to it. Sure, there are things about it that we like, but some elements of the car still leaves a lot to be desired. Then again, a car like the Forte, or any other in this segment for that matter, isn’t subject to an all-or-noting affection level.
There are things about it we liked. There are things we didn’t like. At the end though, the Forte received good marks from us because the things we liked outweighed the things we didn’t like.
Not by much. But hey, that’s still worth some salt to us.
Updated 02/24/2014: TopSpeed editor in chief, Justin Cupler, spent a week with a Kia Forte EX with all sorts of goodies installed. Did he love it? Check out the "Driving Impressions" section after the jump.
Find out what we think of the new 2014 Kia Forte after the jump
Meet the Ural Yamal SE sidecar. This Russian machine was especially developed to be able to deal effortless with the toughest tracks, so it’s the perfect partner for long adventures on three wheels.
The Yamal comes with a sealed double hull, a customized oar and an orange paint job. At its heart lies an OHV, air-cooled, 4 stroke, opposed twin cylinder engine with a displacement of 749cc. Fire up the unit and it will reward you with a maximum output of 40 hp at 5600 rpm and 38 ft.lbs at 4600 rpm. The engine transfers its power to the ground through a five speed transmission and propels you to a maximum speed of 65 mph.
Other features that are worthy of being mentioned include a two fog lights mounted on the sidecar bumper, a windscreens for both the rider and passenger and a 5.0 gallons fuel tank.
Hit the jump for more information on the 2014 Ural Yamal SE.
2014 Porsche Cayman
The second-generation Porsche Cayman was unveiled in 2012, seven years after the nameplate made its debut on the same platform as the Boxster. The upgrad brought a new body design, a longer wheelbase, a wider front track, and a revised interior that matched the styling of the more upscale 911 model. The redesign also brought more power to the table, with both the base and S models gaining updated flat-six engines alongside tweaked six-speed manual and seven-speed PDK transmissions.
As a result, the new Cayman was quicker and had better handling and driving dynamics.
Unlike its predecessor, the second-generation Cayman also spawned a GTS variant, previously available only on the 911. The sportier model was followed by the Cayman GT4 in 2015, a more track-oriented sports car that borrowed its engine from the 911 Carrera S. The GT4 Clubsport was another premier for the nameplate. Developed by Porsche Motorsport for racing, it featured several weight-reducing measures, a mechanical rear-axle locking differential, and a race-spec interior with a racing bucket eat and six-point harness.
The second-gen Cayman received an extensive facelift in 2016, when Porsche not only revised its design, but also changed the name and replaced the flat-six units with turbocharged, four-cylinder engines.
Continue reading to learn more about the 2014 Porsche Cayman.
Meet the 2012 Yamaha FX Nytro MTX 162 – a fast sled that can tackle anything you throw at it. As far as power is concerned, the sled is propelled by a 4-stroke, 3-cylinder, 2-valves, liquid-cooled engine with a displacement of 1,049 cc.
Among the improvements made for 2012 you’ll find the new Ascent track, single-piece extrovert drivers, MT-9 mountain skis and new graphics. Moreover, the sled’s seat has been also improved, offering better anti-sag properties in the foam and a more durable seat cover.
The 2012 Yamaha FX Nyto MTX 162 rides on a plush suspension that was carefully tweaked to put the rider’s comfort on the first place. It consists of Fox Float 2 and Fox Float XV shocks that are combined with a new shallow approach angle and new lightweight rails with the designed semi-couple.
Hit the jump for more information on the 2012 Yamaha FX Nytro MTX 162.