2018 Volkswagen I.D. R Pikes Peak
In case you hadn’t heard, Volkswagen is pivoting to a greener, more eco-friendly approach to building its cars, offering up plans to produce a host of new all-electric models over the next several years. Spearheading this new direction is a range of vehicles dubbed the I.D. family, which includes concepts like the Buzz minivan and Crozz four-door crossover. However, doesn’t think the I.D. range will be the death of go-fast VW’s - quite the opposite, in fact, as VW is also prepping a little something labeled I.D. for the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb in Colorado this June. It’s called the I.D. R, and it’s the company’s first-ever all-electric race car, purpose-built to tackle the Race to the Clouds. If ever there was a worthwhile application of VW’s EV tech, this is it. Mind the wing.
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2018 Ferrari SP38
Introduced in 2015 as a replacement for the 458 Italia, the Ferrari 488 GTB is already an iconic supercar. It already spawned a topless, Spider version, as well as a replacement for the 458 Speciale, called the 488 Pista. Racing duties go to the 488 GTE and 488 GT3 for the most coveted classes in the FIA-governed championships. Much like its predecessor, it was also used for a custom limited-edition model, called the J50 and built in just ten units to celebrate 50 years since the Italian brand arrived in Japan. Come 2018 and Ferrari rolled off yet another bespoke model. It’s called the SP38, and only one will ever see the light of day.
Developed by company’s One-Off program, the SP38 was designed by the Ferrari Design Center on the chassis and running gear of the 488 GTB. It was unveiled at Ferrari’s Fiorano test track, where it was handed over to one of the company’s most dedicated customers. The new supercar will be on public display for the first time at the 2018 Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este before it will find its way in a heated garage. Needless to say, the SP38 is the most intriguing version of the 488 GTB yet, and it will probably become a highly sought-after collectible in a few years.
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2019 Audi TT
Audi first introduced the TT as a sporty compact two-door in the late ‘90s, with the latest third-generation model arriving in 2014 at the Geneva International Motor Show. Offered with both a hardtop coupe and a drop-top roadster body style, the TT is looking to get a mild refresh heading into the 2019 model year. Updates include the usual bumper treatment changes and a few extra mpg and horsepower under the hood.
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2018 Rezvani Beast Alpha X Blackbird
Rezvani Motors was originally founded in 2014 in Orange County, California. In May of 2015, Rezvani released its very first model - the Rezvani Beast, a low-weight supercar based on the Ariel Atom. The company has released a series of new models in the years that followed, including an SUV called the Rezvani Tank, and now it’s introducing a new top-of-the-line iteration of the Beast called the Alpha X Blackbird, which sits atop four other models, including the Beast, Beast Alpha, Beast X, and Beast Alpha X. Rezvani says this latest model is even more hardcore than those that came before, once again combining impressively low weight and high horsepower to make for the “quickest, most powerful vehicle Rezvani Motors has ever built.”
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2019 Audi TT RS
The current Audi TT was unveiled in 2014, and the range-topping TT RS model was introduced for the 2017 model year. The high-revving coupe has been on the market for less than two years as of May, but Audi is already testing a mid-cycle facelift. Spotted testing on public roads in late 2017, the TT RS visited the Nurburgring track in April 2018. The coupe is still wearing camouflaged over the body parts that will get updates, but it seems that it won’t be long until it’s ready to go into production.
Like all Audi facelifts, expect the upgrade to bring only minor revisions inside and out. The exterior should get new bumpers and improved aerodynamics, while the cabin should receive Audi’s latest technology, but retain the third-generation design layout. The German car will continue to use the turbocharged, five-cylinder engine, but revised internals should add a bit of extra power and decrease CO2 emissions. An unveiling could happen by the end of 2018, but don’t expect the updated TT RS to arrive in the United States before the 2020 model year.
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2018 Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 RS
When it unveiled the 2016 Porsche Cayman GT4 in February 2015, Porsche finally did what gearheads had been asking for a very long time: it allowed the mid-engined Cayman to live up to its true potential, which had been kept leashed to prevent it from being faster than the base 911. Now that the first Cayman GT4 has come and gone and the mid-engined sports car it was based on received its mid-cycle update, it’s time for a new track ready coupe.
Ever since the first GT4 was announced, enthusiasts have been asking themselves whether Porsche will take things up a notch and develop a GT4 RS. But, despite favorable rumors and the fact that an RS version would make sense, a more powerful GT4 has yet to happen. This could change with the upcoming model. And even though there’s no confirmation whether it will be called the GT4 or GT4 RS, the new coupe will definitely pack a significantly beefed-up engine. So I’m tempted to go with an "RS" badge.
Updated 05/15/2018: Our spy photographers caught the upcoming Porsche Cayman GT4 out for a new testing session around Nurburgring. Porsche is rumored to unveil the new Cayman GT4 in autumn at the 2018 Paris Motor Show.
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2019 Aston Martin DB11 AMR
Aston Martin debuted the DB11 in 2016 at the Geneva International Motor Show, introducing it as a replacement for the critically acclaimed DB9. Offered with both a twin-turbo 4.0-liter V-8 from Mercedes-AMG and a twin-turbo 5.2-liter V-12 made in-house, the DB11 quickly established itself as a force to be reckoned with in the luxury grand tourer performance segment. Now, Aston is replacing the top-trim V-12 with an even-faster version from AMR, stuffing it with more power, sharper handling, and tons of aesthetic upgrades front to back, inside and out.
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2018 Aston Martin V12 Vantage V600
Aston Martin just redesigned the Vantage for 2018, replacing the previous model after no fewer than 13 years on the market. But, in a surprising turn of events, the British firm revived the old model for a limited-edition run called the Vantage V600. Built by the company’s Q division, the V600 was designed on request and will be produced in only 14 units, split between seven coupes and seven convertibles. The Vantage V600 pays tribute to the original V8 Vantage V600 that Aston Martin introduced in 1998.
Based on the Virage model sold between 1989 and 2000, the previous V600 was the most extreme iteration of the Vantage model. Powered by a 600 horsepower supercharged engine (remember, that was in 1998!), the first V600 was one of the most powerful sports cars of its time. Come 2018, and Aston Martin is sending the VH-platform Vantage into the history books with a similar model. Although not as extreme as its predecessor, the new-old V600 marks the official retirement of the iconic VH platform in two-door Aston Martins.
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2018 Lotus Exige Sport 410
The apex-hungry engineers over at Lotus are at it again, releasing yet another tuned-and-tweaked version of the most-excellent Exige. This time, it’s called the Sport 410, and it slots between the Exige Cup 430 and Exige Sport 350 as a replacement for the Exige Sport 380, offering a harder edge than the Sport 350, but a more forgiving A-to-B drive experience than the Cup 430.
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2018 Roush JackHammer Mustang
The sixth-generation Ford Mustang gained a comprehensive facelift for the 2018 model year, and the update also injected a bit more power into the 5.0-liter V-8. But if 460 horsepower still isn’t enough for you and you simply can’t wait for the Shelby GT500 model in 2020, there are plenty of shops to choose from if you want to supercharge your pony. Roush is one of them, and its new JackHammer package will put more than 700 horsepower under your gas pedal.
Based on the latest Mustang GT, the JackHammer package is pretty much a Stage 3 update with some extra features. As usual, you get the sportier appearance with black body inserts, a range of stripe and hockey stick graphics, and a handful of bespoke features inside the cabin. Under the hood, there’s a brand-new supercharged atop the 5.0-liter V-8 and plenty of oomph to take the fastback to the drag strip. Let’s find out more about that below.
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2018 Brabham BT62
Although it hasn’t built road cars yet, Brabham is among the most iconic race car builders of all time, most famous for its 30-year career in Formula One. Established in 1962, Brabham disappeared from racing in 1992 due to financial issues. The brand was revived in 2014 as Brabham Racing, and in 2018 it unveiled its firm design in more than two decades. Meet the Brabham BT62, a track-only supercar powered by a 700-horsepower V-8 engine.
Seemingly unveiled out of nowhere, the BT62 is a project that David Brabham, the youngest son of company founder Sir Jack Brabham, has been working on for a few years. The firm was reestablished in 2014 with a goal to join the World Endurance Championship and to return to Formula One. This has yet to happen, but Brabham designed a supercar instead. Although it’s not eligible for road use, the BT62 looks as aggressive as track-only supercars get and its spec sheet is impressive to say the least. Let’s find out more about it below.
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2018 DS X E-Tense
Citroen has a reputation in the auto industry for designing some of the most extreme concept cars in the business. The Survolt and the Cxperience are two that come to mind. Since the company launched the DS sub-brand in 2009, that design creativity has extended to give us creations like the Divine DS and the E-Tense concept vehicles. Today, DS takes us on another wild ride with the arrival of its latest brainchild, the DS X E-Tense concept, a car that the company describes as “a vision of what a dream car might resemble in the year 2035.”
2019 Pininfarina H2 Speed
Pininfarina has been around for quite a while now, first spreading roots in Torino way back in 1930. Best known for its design work for major automakers like Alfa Romeo, Ferrari, and Maserati, among others, Pininfarina is more old-school cool than it is next-gen tech. However, that association looks like it’s getting a shakeup with the release of the H2 Speed, a production-ready hydrogen-powered race car destined to blitz race tracks around the world, leaving nothing but water vapor from the exhaust tips.
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2019 BMW M2 Competition
Revealed in October 2015, the BMW M2 Coupe turned out to be a revival of the iconic BMW 1 Series M Coupe from 2012. With a more compact body and a power-to-weight ratio similar to the M4, the M2 is actually a better option for those looking for the dynamics and dimensions of the original M3. All told, there are plenty of things to get excited about with the M2 Coupe. However, as soon as it arrived, word got out that the M2 won’t be the most hardcore incarnation of the 2 Series. Original rumors talked about a CSL version of the coupe, but come 2018 and BMW launched a more powerful version of the car under the Competition name. And surprisingly enough, it’s not an addition to the lineup, but a successor to the M2 Coupe.
Although it’s actually mid-cycle facelift, the M2 Competition received a notable amount of extra features over the standard M2. The exterior is a bit more aggressive, while the interior gained new standard features and carbon-fiber trim. There’s big news under the skin too, where the M2 Competition comes with an engine based on the M4, with more oomph obviously, and upgraded chassis, cooling, brakes, and exhaust. All told, the M2 Competition is a slightly more compact M4 now, which is both good and bad for the company. Keep reading to find out why.
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2018 Touring Sciàdipersia
The history of Carrozzeria Touring Superleggera stretches all the way back to 1926, with a lengthy hiatus between 1966 and 2008 breaking up an otherwise very impressive resume´ of custom cars and design work. The latest from this Italian powerhouse is called the Sciàdipersia, and as you might have guessed, it’s an utterly bespoke, limited-run sports machine dripping with high-end details.
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2020 Porsche 911 Turbo
The 991.2-generation Porsche 911 may be just a year old, but the German company is already working on the next iteration of the iconic sports car. Likely to be called the 992, the upcoming 911 is already being tested on public roads according to our paparazzi, who just sent us the first pictures with the coupe. Although the 992-gen 911 looks identical to the current model, that’s not to say that the upcoming sports car will carry over unchanged on the outside. The reason for the similar looks is that the 992 is still in its early stages of development, and thus Porsche uses the body of the current model, albeit with some modifications.
We don’t know much about the next-generation 911, but Porsche is working on a brand-new platform and new version of the existing engines. Alongside the standard model, Porsche will also launch a new Turbo variant, which will be sportier and will use a more powerful drivetrain. There’s no official word as to when it will arrive, but I expect it to break cover sometime in 2018. However, we should see an update model with the new styling features on the road by the end of 2017. Meanwhile, find out what we already know about the upcoming 911 Turbo in the speculative review below.
Updated 04/17/2018: The next generation Porsche 911 Turbo was caught testing once again around the famous Nurburgring race track.
Continue reading to learn more about the 992-generation Porsche 911 Turbo.
2018 Audi e-tron Vision Gran Turismo
Launched in 2013, the Vision Gran Turismo program gave mainstream automakers to develop wild concept cars for the Gran Turismo 6 and Gran Turismo Sport video games. No fewer than 26 virtual vehicles were created by more than 20 carmakers until 2018, with the likes of Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Aston Martin, Toyota, Chevrolet, Lexus, and Bugatti having joined the ranks. Come 2018 and Audi launched its first concept car for the Gran Turismo Sport video game. But unlike the competition, the Audi e-Tron Vision Gran Turismo is a fully functional vehicle.
While most Vision Gran Turismo concepts were developed exclusively for the pixelated world of Gran Turismo, some were built as full-scale models, and only a small fraction had an actual drivetrain. But none of them were able to function as actual race cars outside the video game. Audi is the first to deploy its Vision Gran Turismo car to real-world racetracks, as the fully-electric vehicle will be used as a taxi during Formula E events.
One of the first manufacturers to enter Formula E with a factory-backed team, Audi is now the first carmaker to offer its customers and guests the opportunity to experience Formula E’s city circuits as passengers in the e-Tron Vision Gran Turismo. This will happen starting April 14, when Formula E goes to Rome, Italy, for the seventh race of the 2017-2018 season. There’s no specific information as to how you can sign up for a ride, but a Vision Gran Turismo concept that actually works in the real world is a might big accomplishment.
Continue reading to learn more about the Audi e-Tron Vision Gran Turismo.
2019 Chevrolet Camaro
Chevy’s resident muscle car and Mustang fighter went under the scalpel for the 2019 model to bring it up to speed in the looks and technology department. As part of this mid-cycle update, Chevy also added in the 1LE package for the Camaro Turbo to make it more track ready while updating various components of other trim levels to help keep them fresh while still standing out in the crowd. There are no power updates as part of this update, but with the new tech and new looks, the Camaro should be able to hold its own against the Mustang and the Challenger for a few more years.