The 2019 Honda Civic Is Safer and Better Looking
While the Type R may be a bit over the top with its styling, the lesser versions of the latest Honda Civic are definitely exceptional in their compact-car mission. Now, Honda has revealed the 2019 Civic with new styling features for the coupe and sedan. As an added bonus the Sport trim can now be had on the Civic Coupe.
21 Awesome Hot Hatches That Americans Can’t Drive
The world of hot hatches is far more interesting than what we in the U.S. can ever fathom. The Europeans are particularly fond of them (the Brits especially), which led to the development of some of the most amazing cars. Some of them have never even appeared on U.S. shores. Believe it or not, I have found 21 awesome hot hatches from the past five years that have never set their tires on this side of the pond.
While compiling this list, I have come to a conclusion that buyers and drivers in the U.S. are usually really predictable. Apart from some producers who do not sell in the U.S. at all, international safety (UNECE) standards for car production are the ones to blame for a shortage of some of these cars.
We’re not compliant with those standards as we have our own set of rules called the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards. In short, a disparity like this makes it very expensive for car producers to create two different versions of a car. And, that is exactly what is needed if you want to sell the same car in the U.S. and in the rest of the world.
Nevertheless, walk through this 4,853 horsepower list and imagine what your life would be like if some of these hot hatches could actually come here.
2018 Brabus 125R
I don’t know why, but there is something majestic when it comes to tiny cars powered by powerful engines. Yup; that 400+ horsepower Cygnet is awesome, but I am thinking something more civilized. Even with less than 100 horsepower, cars like the Toyota iQ, or anything from Smart are simply a lot of fun. This time around, Brabus created a rather special 125R based around the Smart ForTwo Convertible and called it the “Pocket Rocket.” Well, it is the pocket rocket considering that the German tuning company dialed up the 0.9-liter turbocharged engine, improved its suspension, and put a special makeup on a tiny car.
2019 Audi A3
The Audi A3 was spotted testing on public roads with what appears to be a production-ready exterior. The hatchback is wrapped in camo from front to rear, but the headlamps, the grille, and other details hint at the company’s recent corporate look. The A3 was joined by the higher performance S3 model. While the regular A3 will break cover in 2019 and go on sale for the 2020 model year, the S3 will probably arrive later, most likely for the 2021 model year.
1956 Maserati A6G/2000 Berlinetta Zagato
Introduced in 1947, the A6 isn’t your regular car nameplate. Unlike most badges, it was used for a variety of models, including both road-legal and race-spec vehicles, as well as single-seat race cars. Although production lasted ten years, the A6 is a rare gem, especially in A6G 2000 Zagato trim. It’s so rare and desirable that RM Sotheby’s estimates that it will be able to auction one for at least $4.25 million.
Developed to replace the 6CM race car, the A6, in which A is for Alfieri Maserati and 6 for six cylinders, also spawned a road-legal car. The first one to arrive was the A6 1500, but the updated A6G 2000 model was far more successful. In 1954, the A6G 2000 was updated, changing its name to the A6G/54. Originally bodied by Frua and Allemano, the A6G 2000 also received a Zagato body in 1956, a collaboration that resulted in a lighter and more aerodynamic car. Not just beautiful to look at, the Zagato-designed A6G 2000 also had a successful racing career.
This particular model, which will go under the hammer in August 2018, competed at the Mille Miglia in 1956 and it’s one of only 20 cars ever built. Extensively documented by marque historian Adolfo Orsi Jr., it went through a two-year restoration and won two awards at the 2014 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, plus another one at the 2015 Villa d’Este Concorso d’Eleganza. Yes, this one’s in mint condition and as special as they get, so it’s not surprising that it could fetch in excess of $4 million.
Ever since it became a subcompact crossover, the Suzuki Vitara has managed to outsell almost everything in its class. I cannot say that Suzuki hit the jackpot with it, but it sure got close. Really close. Now in its third year of production, the car has received a mid-cycle facelift that gives it exterior features and a more refined cabin. It Completely ditched the most popular engine from the lineup, though. The 1.6-liter, naturally aspirated engine was replaced with the Boosterjet engine. It is a 1.0-liter that’s good for 109 horsepower and 125 pound-feet of torque. Obviously, not the most powerful engine out there, but it is expected to outsell the other one in the line up (the 1.4-liter, 138 horsepower engine) by quite a margin.
2019 Audi Q3
Audi first produced the Q3 compact crossover in 2011, but didn’t bring it stateside until after a refresh for the2015 model year. Since its star-spangled arrival, the luxury-oriented high-stance five-door has posted strong sales numbers, performing well in a segment fraught with competition. These days, demand for small SUVs continues to grow unabated, which means Audi is giving the Q3 a second-gen update for the 2019 model year. Providing the Q3’s latest styling cues and equipment perks is Audi’s lineup of range-toppers, including the Q8 and the A8, while larger exterior dimensions and a turbocharged engine lineup round it out.
Continue reading to learn more about the 2019 Audi Q3.
2019 Ford Mondeo
The Ford Mondeo is spending a lot of time in front of the cameras these days. After being spotted frolicking in the snow in Sweden a few months ago, the Mondeo is back doing test runs, this time in the friendlier climate of Southern Europe. It’s also a different body type — it’s a wagon! — than the Mondeo prototype a few months ago, but the location of the camouflage remains the same, so the front and rear sections are still matters of speculation. Still, we get a good look at the Mondeo wagon’s entire body, giving us an indication of what to expect when it comes out.
2019 Lynk & Co 04 Hatchback
Lynk & Co started out as a curious novelty, but since launching the intriguing 01 SUV in 2017, the Geely-owned start-up is now turning more than a few curious heads. In a span of a year, Lynk & Co has gone from launching the 01 to doing succeeding unveilings of the 02 and 03. Now, the brand’s fourth model — a hatchback — takes center stage, thanks in large part to a new batch of spy photos showing the car in proper prototype form, complete with thick black wraps and lots of camouflage. The model is tentatively called the "04," and it has the makings of being a serious challenger in a market dominated by heavyweights like the Ford Focus, Volkswagen Golf, and Chevrolet Cruze.
2020 Mercedes-Benz CLA
Mercedes previewed the CLA-Class with the Concept Style Coupe, then a year later showed up at the Detroit Auto Show with the very first CLA-Class – a new entry-level model and the true baby of the Mercedes lineup. It’s essentially as CLS sized down a bit but features that trending four-door coupe body style that we’ve had to get used to. With that said, the CLA has been around for a while now, and 2020 will be the mark for the second-gen model to hit the market. That means it will debut in 2019, but that doesn’t matter because we’re already getting a good look at it now, and it looks very much like its bigger brother, the CLS. It will ride on the same platform as the new Mercedes A-Class and will even get the same engine lineup – including a pair of over-powered and brawny-for-their-size AMG models.
Update 07/25/2018: The Mercedes CLA has finally dropped some of its camo and was found playing on the Nurburgring. There’s still some time before it makes its debut but check out the spy shots section below to see the latest developments.
2019 Mercedes-Benz B Class
The first generation of the Mercedes-Benz B-Class subcompact five-door MPV arrived back in 2006, lasting until 2011. The second generation hit the scene a year later and continues to occupy dealership lots the world over. The current generation received a facelift back in 2014, so it’s about time for an update. As such, Mercedes has a fleet of test mules out on public roads, once again offering entry-level luxury in a small, yet practical package.
With a debut expected for later this year or early in 2019, our carparazzi managed to capture the third-gen as it underwent final testing, including recent summer testing and cold-weather testing late last year. The new B-Class is expected to carry the internal codename W247, as well as evolved styling cues, the latest Mercedes-branded infotainment goods, and a slew of engine options pulled from the Mercedes parts bin. Read on for our full speculative review.
Continue reading to learn more about the 2019 Mercedes-Benz B-Class.
Hyundai has come a long way. Like, a really, really, long way. Remember the old Hyundai Accent? It was a strangely underwhelming machine even when new. Last night I was strolling through the streets and suddenly came across the new Hyundai i30 (the Elantra GT.) It was dark outside, the car was black, and you know what, the new i30 did not look underwhelming. Not a bit. It’s a hatch I wouldn’t mind driving, owning or, in its most potent N form, racing. Now, the Europeans get a new version of the i30 to spice the things up a bit. The N Line! I did not use “spice up” only by chance. Hyundai actually titled the press release with “Spice up your driveway,” and I get them. With body additions inspired by the top of the line i30 N, the new i30 N Line feels lively and rambunctious. Especially in red.
2019 Nissan Leaf Nismo
Introduced in 2010, the Nissan Leaf set many benchmarks in the electric car market and has become one of the most popular EVs out there. But, after seven years on the market, the Leaf got a bit long in the tooth, and with other companies having introduced more modern EVs in this niche, Nissan had no choice but to develop a second-generation model. Unveiled for the 2018 model year, the new Leaf is better in just about any department and it finally spawned a Nismo version.
Previewed by a concept unveiled at the 2017 Tokyo Motor Show, the Leaf Nismo is heavily based on the show car. However, the Nismo isn’t the "higher power, longer range version at a higher price" promised by Nissan, as the upgrade is far from comprehensive under the skin. The EV was also launched in Japan only, and it doesn’t seem as if Nissan wants to sell it in Europe or the United States anytime soon. Information is still scarce, but until more data becomes available let’s have a closer look at what we already know about it.
Continue reading to learn more about the Nissan Leaf Nismo.
2019 Volkswagen T-Roc GTI
Launched in 2017, the T-Roc is Volkswagen’s smallest crossover yet. Built on the MQB platform that underpins several Volkswagen Group vehicles, it’s related to the Audi Q2 and Seat Arona and competes against the likes of the Nissan Juke, Toyota C-HR, and Renault Captur. Ever since it arrived in showrooms, there have been rumors that Volkswagen may develop a GTI version of the mini SUV. Come 2018, and the beefed-up crossover was spotted testing on public roads.
Performance-oriented models are quite rare in this niche. Although the segment is populated by at least ten models from various companies in Europe, none of them are available with power upgrades. Nissan used to offer a Nismo version of the Juke, or even the extreme, GT-R-powered Juke-R, but these variants are no longer available. This means that the T-Roc GTI will be a unique model and will have the entire market to itself. At least for a while. Let’s find out what it may bring to the table in the speculative review below.
2019 Audi A1
The second-generation Audi A1 is finally here. Initially launched as a small-sized, three-door, entry-level ‘Sportback’ in 2010, Audi then went on to give it five doors in 2011. The A1 has been a successful product for Audi, and is targeted to customers who prefer an “ideal companion for an urban lifestyle." After six years, the second-gen makes its debut, and it definitely looks fresh and sharper than ever.
2018 Aston Martin Cygnet V8
A big part of the Goodwood Festival of Speed’s charm is that you never know exactly what to expect when it comes to the cars that take a crack at the Hill climb event. In the first day of the event, we’ve already seen a rainbow-colored Porsche 911, a lawnmower (yes, a lawnmower!), and a tiny city car that somehow found enough room in its body for a V-8 engine. That last car is the Aston Martin Cygnet, the cute little urban transporter that was essentially a rebadged version of the Toyota iQ. Even better, this V-8-powered Cygnet isn’t a hack job built by some loony tuner in some corner of England. Aston Martin actually created it, or to be more specific, Q by Aston Martin created it for a customer, and now it’s turning heads at the Goodwood Festival of Speed.
To the surprise of the whole car world, Aston Martin revealed a new version of its long-deceased Cygnet at the 2018 Goodwood Festival of Speed. Billed as “The Ultimate City Car,” the new Aston Martin Cygnet V8 is actually a one-off piece for a customer who commissioned it through the ‘Q by Aston Martin – Commission’ service. With an engine taken from the Vantage S, 19-inch wheels, and a dramatically reimagined drivetrain, the new Cygnet V8 is the most unusual piece of machinery Aston has revealed in a while. This is a 123-inch long car, with a 4.7-liter, V-8 that develops 430 horsepower. It sounds like a joke, but it is not.
2019 Suzuki Jimny
The fourth-generation Suzuki Jimny has arrived, and as usual with the small off-roader, it’s packing plenty of might and muscle in such a small frame. The baby off-road machine gets plenty of new features, a lot of which have been thrown in to get fans of the model new reasons to get excited about what it has to offer. And it has a lot to offer. It may not be as powerful as other off-roaders in the market, but there’s something to be said for a Suzuki that has lasted this long and has gained somewhat of a cult following of its own. The fourth-gen Jimny is here, and it couldn’t have arrived soon enough.
2018 Fiat 500 Spiaggina by Garage Italia and Pinninfarina
Marking the 60th anniversary since the unveiling of the first special edition car based on the model 500 - the 500 Jolly, known as "Spiaggina," Fiat showcased their new limited edition of the latest Fiat 500. Called the Fiat 500 Spiaggina ’58, the new model is limited to 1958 units. A number which is an homage to the year Fiat showcased the original 500 Jolly, a car adored by rich and famous of the time.
However, apart from Fiat showcasing a rather cool Spiaggina ‘58 production model based on the 500C with a 1.2-liter, 69 horsepower engine, Garage Italia and Pininfarina prepared their own celebration model. It is a better one.
2019 Renault Captur Coupe
Renault’s got big plans for its Captur lineup, and it seems that one of those plans involve rolling out a new coupe-crossover that will make its debut in concept form at the 2018 Moscow Motor Show. The French automaker has rolled out at the first teaser of the concept, but more importantly, a heavily camouflaged test prototype has been seen rolling on the streets recently. By all accounts, this test mule is an early production version of the Moscow-bound concept that we will see this August. It’s already pegged to get the Captur Coupe name, and it will likely be shared with Dacia using the same nameplate.
2019 Volkswagen T-Cross
New spy shots of the Polo-based Volkswagen T-Cross are giving us a clear idea of what to expect when the smallest member of VW’s crossover family hits dealerships next year. The T-Cross was seen testing in and around the Nurburgring with heavy camouflage covering its front and rear sections. The crossover’s design elements are slowly unraveling, and from the looks of it, the T-Cross is going to be what we all thought it’d be. It’s a high-riding Volkswagen Polo with some design elements culled from its big brother, the T-Roc.
2019 Suzuki Jimny
Most Americans miss out on some really interesting things. Fine, missing out on Kinder eggs is one thing, but missing out on some amazing cars is where we should draw the line.
Take for example the Suzuki Jimny - a pocket-size off-roader capable of treading where only a few would dare. After three generations and more than 2.25 million units sold since 1970, Suzuki finally revealed the first official photos of the fourth generation Jimny.
And, that only happened after some customers captured photos of the new Jimny at a Suzuki private event and published them online. An official live presentation is scheduled for the 2018 Paris Motor Show in October.
2019 Volvo S60
Following the launch of the new-generation V60 wagon, Volvo introduced a redesigned version of the S60 sedan in June 2018. Essentially a shrunken S90 with mild tweaks on the outside, the new S60 comes to tackle the highly popular BMW 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class with new technology and new drivetrains.
The first Volvo to be built in the United States, the S60 was unveiled during the inauguration of the company’s new South Carolina factory. It’s not only the first U.S.-built Volvo, but it’s also the brand’s first vehicle to be sold without a diesel engine. Although the Swedish company has some of the most efficient oil burners out there, its diesels will retire in a couple of years as Volvo wants to add electrification to all of its cars from 2019.