A Deep Look Into Aston Martin’s Mid-Engined History
Aston Martin is known as a maker of exquisite and refined grand tourers, long-legged cars that offer enough panache to satisfy Ian Fleming’s James Bond on many an occasion. You could say Aston Martin knows every trick there is to know when it comes to building a front-engined GT car and that’s why they’re now looking to build more and more cars with the engine behind the seats. But the Valkyrie, the new Vanquish, and the AM-RB 003 aren’t the first of their kind in Aston Martin’s history.
When you think of any DB model from Aston Martin, you imagine an elegant two-door tourer ready for long journeys with a sumptuous and well-appointed interior and a feisty engine in front of the windshield. The company’s one and only Le Mans winner, the DBR1, was also front-engined as was the futuristic brick-like Lagonda luxury sedan from the ’70s. But, then, in the ’80s, when Aston Martin returned to sports car racing, it did so with a mid-engined car. This effectively heralded a new breed of Aston Martins, one that has stayed away from the public highways up until now but one that’s interesting to look into nonetheless.
2018 Lexus LX 570
First hitting the market in January of 1996, the Lexus LX nameplate has evolved through three separate generations over the years, with the latest J200 iteration arriving in 2007. Based heavily on the Toyota Land Cruiser, the Lexus LX is the premium Japanese brand’s take on full-size luxury SUV transport, comfortably seating up to eight passengers and offering a good deal of capability if road conditions are less than ideal. However, according to Lexus, “some customers indicated they did not use the third row and expressed a preference for more interior cargo space,” and as a result, the 2018 model year gets a bit of switch-up in the cabin. Introduced as the LX 570 at the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show, the third-row bench was tossed to accommodate more junk in the trunk, all while keeping the same capability and comfort found in the LX’s eight-seater counterparts.
Lexus says the LX 570 is aimed at “smaller families, empty nesters and multiple-vehicle households, [customers who] are more likely to travel with fewer passengers but more carry-on gear. Among the activities they enjoy are skiing, cycling, kayaking, and golf, along with such hobbies as nature photography and antique collecting. Some also wanted more versatility for carrying their dogs.” So – does the LX really work better with fewer seats and more cargo?
Update 8-13-2020: Lexus has updated the LX570 for the 2021 model year with a few new goodies, a new package, and a new limited-edition Inspiration Series. Check out the details down below.
The 2020 SEMA Show is the Latest to Bite the Dust
SEMA show has been a major attraction for people interested in aftermarket equipment and accessories. It also served as a perfect ground for the engineers and designers to showcase their creative sides by building crazy concepts. For off-roaders and pickup trucks, it was the biggest stage of ‘em all. But, just like the other shows this year, the SEMA show, too, will bite the dust. Earlier this week, SEMA officially confirmed that the 2020 edition of the show is scrapped. Well, this was expected.
One of the World’s Best and Largest Auto Shows Could Be Dead Forever
Lamborghini Might Attend Future Auto Shows, But We Won’t See Anything New
Italian supercar manufacturer Lamborghini says it will no longer unveil new cars at mainstream auto shows. The company claims that its customers want a more intimate relationship with the brand, something they can’t have through major auto shows, which are usually packed with visitors. Instead, Lambo wants to focus on smaller, private events where customers will feel that they can develop a closer connection to the brand.
Elektron Innovativ To Debut A 1,300-Horsepower Electric Hypercar At The 2021 Geneva Motor Show
For some reason, the majority of the electric startups begin their journeys with supercars or hypercars before trickling down to mass-market cars; Tesla, Rivian, and Fisker, to name a few. Here’s one such company, Elektron Innovativ, that has taken the first step – build a mighty powerful electric car to grab everyone’s attention. But, is it that intriguing to the enthusiasts anymore?
COVID-19 Pandemic: 2020 Beijing Auto Show Postponed Until September
The 2020 Beijing Auto Show was postponed until late September due to the novel coronavirus outbreak. Original scheduled for April 21 to 30, the event will take place between September 26 and October 5.
The Beijing Auto Show joins several major car shows across the world that had to either be canceled or postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Detroit Auto Show was canceled, New York was postponed but could be canceled as well, while the Paris Motor Show could be much smaller than before.
COVID-19 Pandemic: Is the 2020 Paris Motor Show Canceled?
The novel coronavirus pandemic could lead to the cancellation of the 2020 Paris Motor Show. According to the organizers, the new Paris Motion Festival, which was supposed to include the 2020 Paris Motor Show, might not happen this year. French organization La Plateforme Automobile (PFA) says that even if the event will go on as scheduled, the car show will be much smaller than before.
Coronavirus Update: Is The 2020 Detroit Auto Show Canceled?
If you’re one of those people that believe there’s a little too much hype and fear-mongering surrounding the Coronavirus, then I’m right there with you. Personally, I think there’s a lot more to the story, and it’s being blown WAY out of proportion. But that’s a conversation for another time. Today, we’re here to talk about auto shows and the impact the “outbreak” of the virus, as it’s called, is affecting them. The 2020 Geneva Motor Show was canceled altogether, and now the New York Auto Show has been rescheduled until late August. So, is the Detroit Auto Show the next auto show to close its doors this year or, at the very least, be postponed?
Update 3/30/2020: The 2020 Detroit Auto Show has officially been canceled. Check out our updated section below to learn all about it and what’s happening next.
New York Auto Show Venue Becomes A Hospital Amid COVID-19 Pandemic
New York’s Jacob K. Javits Convention Center should have been preparing to host the 2020 New York Auto Show this time of the year, but instead it will be turned into a field hospital for COVID-19 patients.
Local authorities announced that the center will be ready to receive patients in seven to 10 days. The 2020 New York Auto Show was originally scheduled to open on April 10, but it was postponed to late August due to the coronavirus outbreak.
2020 Morgan Plus Four
The 2020 Morgan Plus Four is a neo-retro roadster produced by British coachbuilder Morgan. The 2020 Plus Four replaces the old Plus 4, a roadster that Morgan produced without any updates from 2005 to 2020. While the nameplate carries over unchanged, the word "Four" replaces the numeral "4" for better differentiation between the two cars. The 2020 Plus Four is underpinned by the CX-Generation, bonded aluminum platform that Morgan debuted in the 2019 Plus Six. Although it looks virtually the same on the outside, the 2020 Plus Four features a more modern interior, while the old naturally aspirated four-cylinder engine was replaced with a turbo-four from BMW.
2020 Skoda Octavia vRS iV
The 2020 Skoda Octavia vRS is the high-performance version of the fourth-generation liftback sedan. Available in both sedan and wagon body styles, the 2020 Octavia vRS boasts the sportier, more angular design of the latest Octavia, but the really big news is that it features a hybrid drivetrain. This isn’t surprising given that it shares underpinnings with the latest Volkswagen Golf,, but it’s the first vRS model to sport a form of electrification. The 2020 Octavia vRS iV is the first performance Skoda model with a plug-in hybrid drivetrain. It also joins other electrified Octavia models like two mild hybrids and a less powerful plug-in. Let’s find out more about this performance four-door in the review below.
2021 Porsche 911 Turbo S
The 2021 Porsche 911 Turbo S is the range-topping version of the latest, 992-generation Porsche 911. Unveiled during the virtual edition of the 2020 Geneva Motor Show, the 2021 911 Turbo S arrive before its least powerful twin, the Turbo. Fitted with a twin-turbo, 3.8-liter flat-six engine rated at 640 horsepower, the 2021 911 Turbo S is the most powerful 911 Turbo model ever. It’s also the quickest, as the beefed-up coupe needs only 2.6 seconds to hit 60 mph from a standing start. How does it compare with the old Turbo S and similar sports cars on the market? Let’s find out in the review below.
2018 - 2020 Zenvo TSR-S
Already nine years old as of 2018, the Zenvo ST1 has already made a name for itself as a potent supercar with extreme design and performance. Designed and built in Denmark, the ST1 remained in production until 2016, when it was replaced by the TS1, which gained certain changes in terms of aerodynamics and drivetrain. The TS1 was followed by the race-spec TSR in 2017. With the latter still new, Zenvo launched a new iteration of its only vehicle to date. It’s called the TSR-S, and it’s the company’s most radical car for street use.
Positioned between the TS1 GT road car and the race-only TSR, the TSR-S shares the looks of the original ST1. However, it borrows the revised aerodynamics of the TSR, as well as a number of unique features that improve performance on both the road and the track. As usual, the Danish automaker will keep production very limited, with only five examples to be built a year. Yes, this thing is just as exclusive as a Koenigsegg, but does it have the power and speed to go against it? Let’s find out in the review below.
Update: 3/12/2020 Zenvo has showcased its latest iteration of the TSR-S road-going hypercar and it comes with a handful of new improvements. Learn all about it below!
2021 Mercedes-AMG E 53 4MATIC+
The 2021 Mercedes-AMG E53 is a facelifted version of the performance sedan that sits between the regular E-Class and the AMG E63. The sedan that replaced the old AMG E43 arrived less than a couple of years ago, but Mercedes-Benz decided to upgrade it alongside the standard E-Class. The facelift adds restyled front and rear sections and some new tech, but the drivetrain remains unchanged.
2020 Mercedes-AMG G-Class Star Trooper Pickup by Mansory
Mansory is a premium aftermarket company that has designed some pretty good vehicles in the past. The cars that it has unveiled lately, however, seem to tell a different story. Check out the audacious Lamborghini Urus Venatus or the Rolls-Royce Cullinan Coastline to know what I mean. But, now, the company is back to working on its favorite vehicle, the Mercedes-Benz G-Class.
In 2019, Mansory worked on the Mercedes-AMG G63 to create a Star Trooper edition of the legendary SUV. The company has now created a pickup version of the same Star Trooper SUV with a few more touches. Did Brabus inspire them to do this? The Star Trooper has been designed by Mansory in collaboration with Phillip Plein.
2021 Aston Martin V12 Speedster
The 2021 Aston Martin V12 Speedster is a limited-edition roadster developed by Aston Martin and its bespoke Q division. A tribute to the Le Mans-winning DBR1 of 1959, the 2021 V12 Speedster sports a traditional speedster body with no windscreen and roof and with a spine separating the driver and the passenger. Built on a custom architecture that combines elements from both the Vantage and the DBS Superleggera, the 2021 V12 Speedster is also a spiritual successor to the CC100 Speedster, a concept that Aston Martin launched in 2013 and built in just two examples. Built in only 88 units, the 2021 V12 Speedster costs almost $1 million. Find out what makes it special in the review below.
The Fiat 500 Is Now Only Sold as an EV - Here’s What You Need to Know About It
EV technology is still not foolproof and people still have range anxiety. That is one of the reasons why buyers are steering clear from EVs until the range issue becomes as minuscule as it is in internal combustion cars. Perhaps that is why automakers are focusing on building urban EV commuters where the range anxiety is not the biggest issue.
Fiat is the latest automaker to dive into the urban EV market with its offering, the 500. Although it seems to be the electric version of the 500 hatch, the 500 is actually built new from the ground up.
2021 Koenigsegg Gemera
The 2021 Koenigsegg Gemera is a two-door, four-seat hypercar developed by the Swedish company that gave us the Agera, Regera, and Jesko. But unlike its siblings, and despite having only two doors, the 2021 Gemera offers seating for four. And it does so via four equally comfortable seats, so it’s not just a regular grand tourer. The 2021 Gemera boasts a hybrid drivetrain under the skin, comprising three electric motor and a three-cylinder engine. As shocking as it may sound, the three-cylinder generates 600 horsepower, making it the most powerful of its kind in production, and works on a variety of fuels, including CO2-neutral methanol. Overall, the hybrid drivetrain pumps out an amazing 1,700 horsepower and 2,581 pound-feet of torque. Let’s find out more about the world’s first practical megacar - aka Mega GT - in the review below.
2020 AIWAYS U6ion
The 2020 Aiways U6ion is an electric crossover concept that the Chinese brand unveiled online during the virtual 2020 Geneva Motor Show. The 2020 U6ion broke cover alongside the 2021 U5, which will be the company’s first vehicle to hit the European market.
The 2020 U6ion previews a coupe-style SUV that will likely share underpinnings with the 2021 U5. Much like its sibling, the 2020 U6ion boasts a bold exterior design and a premium interior. It also looks ready to go into production as none of its design cues and technologies seem far-fetched.
2020 Rolls-Royce Cullinan Coastline By Mansory
The Rolls-Royce Cullinan is the most luxurious SUV you can buy today. Even in the standard form, it basically has everything one needs (and doesn’t need) in an SUV. But that didn’t stop aftermarket companies from trying to do different things to it and give it a twist.
Klassen stretched and armored a Cullinan and put a $2 million price tag on it. Rolls-Royce upped the ante when it launched the Cullinan Black Badge edition. And, now, Mansory has laid its hands on it and unveiled the Rolls-Royce Cullinan Coastline.
The Cullinan Coastline features a lot of changes in and out, and feels like a fresh take on the world’s costliest SUV. The exterior features a body kit, the interior receives a new theme, and the drivetrain receives a power bump. Will it lure in any buyers?
2021 AIWAYS U5
The 2021 Aiways U5 is a Chinese-built, midsize SUV powered by an all-electric drivetrain. Originally unveiled in 2018 for the Chinese market, the 2021 U5 was presented during the virtual 2020 Geneva Motor Show for the European market.
Unlike regular vehicles, the 2021 U5 will be sold exclusively via a direct-to-customer process instead of being retailed or leased through traditional dealerships. The 2021 Aiways U5 features a 140-kW electric motor and a 63-kWh battery that provides more than 400 km for range on the WLTP cycle.
The Gumpert Nathalie’s Battery Source Can Be Replenished In Three Minutes!
Gumpert is a German sports car manufacturer owned by Shanghai-based Aiways, and it debuted two prototypes at the 2019 Geneva Motor Show. A year later, Gumpert’s revolutionary car, the Nathalie, has become a reality. The Gumpert Nathalie is the world’s first methanol fuel cell car that takes EV technology to a whole new level. The Nathalie sprints to 60 mph in under three seconds and comes with a range of over 500 miles. Insane, isn’t it?