2019 Bentley Flying Spur
Launched in 2005 and updated in 2013, the Bentley Flying Spur is getting a little long in the tooth. As a result, the British firm has already begun testing the next-generation model and we have already received the first spy shots of the upcoming luxury rig. Don’t let the Panamera body fool you, this is actually a Bentley mule, and the fact that Bentley is using a Porsche body is by no means surprising. As you may recall, the first Bentayga prototype hit the road with an Audi Q7 body. Also, keep in mind the Bentley, Porsche, and Audi are all under the same Volkswagen Group umbrella. If you’re still in doubt, our paparazzi have already checked the British plates with the DVLA, which revealed that the prototype is indeed registered as a Bentley.
Likely to break cover in late 2018 or early 2019, the next-generation Flying Spur will bring major improvements to the nameplate. Arguably the most imporant is the MSB-F platform, which already made its debut in the new Porsche Panamera. The redesign will also spawn a new styling language, a more luxurious interior, and give the sedan more powertrain options. Official data is virtually non-existent, but I gathered all existing rumors in a speculative review that should keep you covered until a Bentley-bodied prototype shows up in 2017. Make sure you stay tuned for details.
Updated 02/13/2018: Our spy photographers caught the new generation Flying Spur out for a new testing session in Sweden. The new car is expected to debut in late 2018 or early 2019.
Continue reading to learn more about the Bentley Flying Spur.
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 02/13/2018: Our spy photographers caught the upcoming Porsche Cayman GT4 out for a new testing session during cold winter conditions. New details suggest that the GT4 will be unveiled on March 6, at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show.
Continue reading to learn more about the Porsche Cayman GT4 RS.
2019 Mercedes-AMG A35 Sedan
After four years with the Audi A3 Sedan being the only four-door on the premium compact market, Mercedes-Benz decided its time to jump in with a three-box version of the popular A-Class. The company’s smallest sedan made its debut in concept form at the 2017 Shanghai Auto Show and the Germans were quick to confirm that a production version is in the making. With the fourth-generation hatchback just unveiled for 2018, the sedan is only months away from an official unveiling. And alongside the standard model, we’ll also get the potent AMG A45, and according to recent spy shots, a milder AMG variant too. The latter is rumored to be called the AMG A35 and it will take on the Audi S3 Sedan.
While the new A-Class is spectacular in just about every department and sports the most beautiful interior in the compact market, the really big news about the A-Class Sedan is that it will be a global vehicle. When the unveiling took place in Shanghai, I was almost certain that the German sedan will follow in the footsteps of the BMW 1 Series Sedan, which is only available in China as of 2018. But Merc has big plans for the A-Class and has already confirmed that the sedan will be sold in the U.S. The regular model should be followed by both AMG versions, including this one. Before we dig in, I want to stress that the A35 nameplate is by no means official. Last year, the less potent AMG was rumored to get an A40 badge, so it could be anything at this point.
Continue reading to learn more about the Mercedes-AMG A35.
2020 RAM Ramcharger
Many in the industry basically begged Dodge to build a three-row SUV based on the then-new 1994 Ram 1500 pickup. Those requests went ignored for three generations of pickups, even as the Ram Trucks brand spun off onto its own from Dodge. But it seems the stars have aligned yet again; Ram has an all-new 1500-series pickup for 2019, SUVs are enjoying a healthy uptick in popularity, fuel are holding steady at a reasonable price, and Fiat Chrysler is basically abandoning domestic sedan productions to make room for more crossovers and SUVs.
So, that begs the question – will Ram build a competitor to the Chevrolet Tahoe/Suburban and Ford Expedition?
Sadly, we haven’t heard any official rumors or seen any appropriately shaped and camouflaged test mules running around Detroit, so it’s almost impossible to speculate with any certainty. However, the timing has never seemed more right. As such, we decided to compile what we imagined a new Ram SUV might look like. Let us know your thoughts in the comments.
Continue reading for more information.
2020 BMW X2 Convertible
Introduced in 2017 as a follow up to a concept vehicle launched in 2016, the X2 is BMW’s sixth crossover and the smallest of its kind alongside the X1. Although the even number in the badge suggests that this crossover is actually a smaller version of the X4, the X2 is far from being a coupe. Somewhat similar to the X1 in terms of shape and size, the X2 does have a few unique features that help it stand out. Already available in Europe and soon to be offered in the U.S. as well, the X2 could get a convertible version in the future. According to recent reports, BMW is already studying a business case for a competitor to the Range Rover Evoque Convertible.
Not yet approved for production, the X2 Convertible is reportedly under serious consideration, with BMW having already conducted a study found that a significant number of drivers would buy such a model. A decision will be made later this year, but the X2 Convertible appears to be a solid proposition if BMW wants to further expand in the crossover segment. Should it get the green light, it will become the company’s eighth crossover, given that it will arrive after the flagship X7. Until BMW confirms it, let’s find out more about what it may bring to the table in the speculative review below.
Continue reading to learn more about the BMW X2 Convertible.
2019 Lamborghini Aventador Performante
It’s been around six months since Lamborghini upgraded the flagship Aventador to S specs, thus introducing the facelifted model, and the Italian firm is already testing a new iteration of the supercar. With the mid-cycle facelift and the high-performance SuperVeloce (SV) already on the road it might seem out of place for Lambo to test a new version of the current generation model, but the prototype our paparazzi caught testing on public roads doesn’t appear to be a next-gen car. Instead, it looks like Lamborghini is actually preparing yet another high-performance model.
There’s no official confirmation from the automaker as of this writing, but the general consensus is that Lamborghini will launch a Performante version of the Aventador soon. As you may remember, the Performante is a more extreme version of the Huracan that uses a more powerful engine and race-inspired aerodynamics. Oh, and it’s the fourth quickest car around the Nurburgring as well as the fastest Lambo on the German race track. Yup, it’s quicker than the Aventador SV, which is why a Performante version of the flagship supercar is actually a really good idea. Let’s find out more about it below.
Updated 02/02/2018: Based on the recent rumors and speculations, we created a rendering for the upcoming Aventador Performante.
Continue reading to learn more about the Lamborghini Aventador Performante.
2020 Hyundai Veloster Cabrio
The second-generation Hyundai Veloster made its debut at the 2018 Detroit Auto Show. As expected, the Korean automaker put in a lot of work to differentiate the punchy hatchback from its predecessor. The new Veloster’s design still jumps out of the page, but it’s not as funky as the first-gen model that had all sorts of curves and weird edges on it. The tamer-looking second-gen Veloster is more appealing to look at. That car has already been well-received by the public, and the same thing should happen once the new Veloster hits dealerships.
But as good as the new Veloster looks like, can you imagine what a drop-top version could look like if Hyundai decided to build one? It’s unlikely that the company will go that route, but if it did, who’d be excited to see a Veloster Cabrio? Is it something you’d want to be seen driving in? If you can’t picture what that kind of car will look like, let this new rendering from master artist X Tomi Design guide your senses and perception. Convinced yet? I know I am.
2020 Lincoln Aviator
It seems Ford is busy developing new vehicles these days. We’ve seen spy shots of a refreshed Explorer, a new Focus hatchback, and this, which is a long-wheelbase SUV that is much larger than the Explorer yet smaller than the Expedition. Upon closer inspection, this test mule rides on reused Lincoln Navigator wheels, has a large vertical pillar in the center of its grille, and has taillights that somewhat recall the shape of the current Navigator’s rear lights. Could it be that Lincoln is preparing a second-generation Aviator? It seems to be happening.
This isn’t the first we’ve heard of the Aviator name getting a reprise. Several articles suggest Lincoln is working on the mid-size SUV. Looking holistically at Lincoln’s lineup, the Aviator would fit perfectly between the larger Navigator and smaller (and recently renamed from MKX) Nautilus. That means Lincoln would have three crossovers with seating for five in the Nautilus, seven in the Aviator, and seven in the Navigator. Of course, the Navigator would remain the flagship SUV with the Aviator targeting luxury-minded yet slightly more budget-conscious families needing three rows of seating. The two-row Nautilus would target small families and empty nesters.
Continue reading for more information and speculation.
2019 Hyundai Tucson
Hyundai is readying its first mid-cycle refresh for the third-generation Tucson crossover. Introduced for the 2015 model year, the two-row SUV has proven extremely lucrative for the South Korean automaker, with sales blasting northward like Elon Musk’s Falcon 9 rocket. Hyundai managed to sell 114,735 examples of the Tucson in 2017 – 2.4 times the number it sold in 2014. Slow claps.
Yet; the current Tucson can’t be left to stagnate. Hyundai is wisely working on a refreshed version that is likely due for the 2019 model. If we’re lucky, we’ll see it debut sometime in 2018.
Our spy photographers captured a couple heavily camouflaged Tucson test mules running about in Germany. Both extreme winter testing and regular driving can be seen in the photos, showing just how much work automakers put into evaluating pre-production models.
Continue reading for more on the upcoming Hyundai Tucson.
2019 Porsche 718 Boxster Spyder
Introduced in 2016, the current-generation Porsche Boxster gained a couple of major changes compared to its predecessor. While the styling and interior didn’t change much compared to the previous roadster, the new Boxster changed its name to the 718 Boxster, a tribute to a sports car from the late 1950s, and switched to turbocharged engines for the first time ever. Come 2018, and it seems that Porsche is finally working on a new version of the Boxster Spyder. First introduced in 2009 and relaunched in 2015, the Boxster Spyder is a modern tribute to the 718 Spyder of the 1960s, and the upcoming will be the first to actually wear the iconic "718" badge next to the "Spyder" lettering.
There isn’t a lot of information to run by as of this writing, but the spyder configuration is pretty obvious in the spy shots. The soft-top roof is different toward the back, while the engine hood features the famous flying buttresses. I also spotted a few changes front and rear. They’re not massive, but they do make the Spyder a bit more aggressive. Under the hood, it should get the most powerful engine ever fitted in a Boxster, but the nameplate’s switch to turbocharging makes things a bit complicated. We should find out more later this year, but until then let’s have a closer look at the spy shots in the speculative review below.
The new 718 Boxster Spyder could break cover in the summer of 2018.
Continue reading to learn more about the Porsche 718 Boxster Spyder.
2019 Land Rover Range Rover SV Coupe
The Range Rover was first introduced back in 1970 under the British Leyland brand. At the time, it was offered exclusively in a two-door body style, and it wasn’t until more a decade later that a four-door variant hit the scene in 1981. These days, fans of high-riding luxury get to enjoy the latest fourth generation, which dropped back in 2012 at the Paris Motor Show. The last time we saw a production two-door Range Rover was in 1994, followed by the concept-only Range Stormer in 2003. Now, Jaguar Land Rover is gearing up to once again offer a two-door iteration of its iconic flagship model. It’s called the Range Rover SV Coupe, with JLR’s in-house tuners, SVO, taking responsibility for the build. JLR calls it the “world’s first full-size luxury SUV coupe,” and although details are scant as of this writing, it’s looking to be a segment-topping exercise in excess, packing the best equipment, the highest output, and the largest price tag ever attached to the nameplate. Production will be limited to just under 1,000 units.
At this point, official info is limited to an overhead shot of the interior and a few words uttered in passing from the company’s top-brass, but we also managed to get our hands on a few spy shots that reveal the forthcoming Range Rover SV Coupe doing a spot of cold-weather testing out in the wild. A full reveal is expected by this March at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show, but until then, read on for our speculative review.
Continue reading to learn more about the Land Rover Range Rover Coupe.
2019 Jeep Renegade
The cute-ute Jeep Renegade is getting its first mid-cycle refresh. Spy photographers spotted a camouflaged Renegade winter testing in Europe along side the euro-spec Wrangler JL and some Alfa Romeo products. The changes are confined to the Renegade’s front and rear fascias, along with tweaks to the dashboard.
Changes to the drivetrain will likely be limited to a new nine-speed automatic transmission and updated Active Drive 4WD system, both courtesy of the updated 2019 Cherokee. Jeep could even include its new 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder, though at 270 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque, is a big jump over the for the 2.4-liter Tigershark four-cylinder and its 180 horses and 175 pound-feet. The power would certainly be welcomed, though.
Jeep is expected to debut the updated Renegade sometime in 2018 ahead of the 2019 model year.
Continue reading for more on the refreshed Jeep Renegade.
2018 BMW Z4
Announced in early 2013, the BMW-Toyota partnership is beginning to take shape with a couple of cars that will share underpinnings and drivetrains. Many rumors have circulated since the two automakers announced the collaboration, a lot of which has been centered on the revival of the Toyota Supra and the development of the next-generation BMW Z4. At one point, reports said that the iconic roadster will be replaced by a new nameplate called the Z5, but it turns out that the Z4 is here to stay. This was confirmed by the Z4 Concept that BMW unveiled in 2017.
After more than three years of unconfirmed speculations, the Z4 has made several public appearances as a camouflaged prototype. Our paparazzi caught the roadster during cold weather testing in early 2017, which suggests that BMW has been working on this new model for quite some time. Come early 2018 and the Z4 was caught stretching its wheels alongside the BMW 3 Series and the new Toyota Supra. The thin camouflage is a strong hint that an unveiling will take place very soon. The roadster will ride on a brand-new platform but it will share engines with other BMW models. Have a look at my speculative review below for more information and stay tuned for updates.
Continue reading to learn more about the 2018 BMW Z4.
2020 Subaru WRX
Ever since its introduction in 1992, the Subaru WRX has promised enthusiasts a thick slice of the high-flying, sideways-sliding, gravel-spraying antics that made the six-star brand famous in the World Rally Championship. Thanks to its turbocharged flat-four engine, stout suspension set-up, speed-oriented interior, and wing-heavy exterior styling, the WRX has cemented its reputation as a machine capable of competition-style performance, but at a price that keeps all your internal organs inside you, rather than going to the highest bidder. Over the years, we’ve seen four generations of the ’Rex, with U.S.-based consumers getting their first taste in the early 2000’s with the second-gen “bug eye” iteration. These days, though, the WRX is considered a bit long in the tooth. While still a solid performance buy, the alternatives are plentiful, while the WRX’s updates mostly just spin the tires. In truth, enthusiasts are clamoring for an updated next-generation WRX capable of besting much fresher offerings from the likes of Ford and Honda.
Luckily, it appears as though Subaru is working on exactly that, as previewed by concepts like the Viziv Performance sedan that dropped at the Tokyo Motor Show back in 2017. But we’re impatient, so we decided to create a rendering, put on our thinking caps, and write up a speculative review on what we think the next-gen WRX could bring to the table. Read on for the details.
Continue reading to learn more about the 2020 Subaru WRX.
2019 Fisker EMotion
If you’ve never heard the name Fisker before, let me give you a brief summary. The name comes from Henrik Fisker, a Danish-born entrepreneur and automotive designer currently residing in Los Angeles. Mr. Fisker worked his pen designing such show stoppers as the Aston Martin DB9, BMW Z8, Galpin-Fisker Mustang Rocket, and VLF Force 1 V10, among others. In 2007, he founded Fisker Automotive, consequently unveiling the Fisker Karma hybrid sports sedan in 2011. Long story short, the Karma didn’t pan out all that great, and Fisker resigned as chairman of the company that bore his name in 2013. But that was then, and now, Fisker has a new automotive startup, and even a new model to go with it. It’s called the EMotion, and it’s framed as a luxurious all-electric four-door with quick performance, groundbreaking solid-state battery technology, and upwards of 400 miles of range per charge, not to mention supercar good looks and Level 4 self-driving capability.
The new firm is called Fisker Inc., and the EMotion will be the company’s very first offering. But it’s not easy to break into the premium EV segment, especially when you consider all the other companies out there vying to do exactly the same. Pair that with growing competition from all the established makes currently doubling down on electric vehicles, and you’re left with odds of success akin to an ice cube’s chance in Hades.
That said, Fisker is no novice in this space. Sure, the Karma didn’t exactly pan out they way it was intended, but when consider Fisker’s vast industry connections and knowledge, Fisker Inc. might actually have a shot at making it. Yes, it’s an extremely bold endeavor, and yes, the claims getting tossed around the EMotion smell a lot like vaporware. But hey – if that guy who made PayPal can do it, why not Fisker?
Updated 1/9/2018: Fisker just debuted the EMotion at CES 2018! Read on for all the details and new images.
Continue reading to learn more about the Fisker EMotion.
2019 Porsche 911 Cabriolet
Introduced in 2011, the current-generation 911 is entering its seventh year on the market in 2018. It may sound like a lot given that most carmakers redesign their models every six to seven years, but the 2015 facelift (called 991.2) managed to keep things fresh. However, the 991-gen 911 is indeed getting a bit long in the tooth, and a brand-new model is under development for the 2019 model year. The German firm has been testing the 992-generation 911 since late 2016, and the sports car’s design moved closer to its production form in the final months of 2017. Come January 2018 and Porsche began testing the convertible version.
Spotted on public roads with the top down, the upcoming 911 Cabriolet sports the same design features as the coupe. Not surprisingly, the visual upgrades are rather mild, with the 992 exterior being heavily based on the outgoing model. The interior is still a mystery as of this writing, but more changes are in store under the skin. The fact that every version of the 911 will be turbocharged is a known fact, but word has it that the next-gen 911 will also get a hybrid variant and maybe even an all-electric model. There’s a big chance that the 992 will be a radical departure from the traditional 911 and the convertible model will follow suit.
An official unveiling is likely to happen in 2018, but I expect more test cars to hit the road over the next six months. So stay tuned for updates and check out the speculative review below for more info on the next-gen 911 Cabriolet.
Continue reading to learn more about the Porsche 911 Cabriolet.
2019 Mercedes-AMG GT4
AMG might be responsible for Mercedes’ most-powerful and appealing models, but the high-performance brand has yet to use its full potential as a car manufacturer. Sure, the Affalterbach-based division brought us the awesome SLS AMG, and more recently, the AMG GT, but it hasn’t developed more than one stand-alone vehicle at a time. With rumors that AMG is pondering a sedan that’s not based on an existing Mercedes model, the brand’s current lineup will soon expand to include a second fully AMG-made product.
The company’s plans to develop a high-performance four-door became more than obvious at the 2017 Geneva Auto Show, where Mercedes-Benz unveiled the AMG GT concept. The show car also confirms that the sedan will be based on the AMG GT in terms of design, but still feature some of the more traditional Mercedes cues seen on the regular sedans. In all, the concept is pretty much a mash up between the AMG GT sports car and the CLS four-door coupe. Also, the fact that the concept’s design isn’t too wild means that the production model could be very similar. The prototypes that were spotted on public roads in 2017 confirms just that.
Update 12/29/2017: The Mercedes-AMG GT4 was caught doing some cold weather testing and playing in the snow. Check out the spy shots section below to get a fresh look at the upcoming sports sedan.
2019 BMW 1 Series
We didn’t get a chance to enjoy the second-generation 1 Series here in the States, but with the introduction of the third-gen model, BMW has decided we are worthy yet again. So far, very little is known about the new 1 Series, but one big factor could be rather detrimental to its success: it’s shifting from a RWD architecture to a FWD architecture. It’s a move that’s surely ruffling some feathers in the Bimmer community. This switch is made possible by UKL platform that debuted in the 2014 Mini Cooper and now underpins the new 1 Series Sedan, 2 Series Active Tourer, and the X1. Outside of this, the new 1 Series will shed its homely exterior design in favor of a more aggressive look with a slightly longer wheelbase than previous models. Rumor also has it BMW is dropping the three-door model, leaving just the five-door hatch to fight against models like the Volkswagen Golf and Ford Focus, among others.
More importantly, however, is the fact that the UKL platform will translate to more space inside for rear seat passengers and cargo. Compared to the Mini Cooper, the new 1 Series will be a bit longer and is even said to be coming back to the U.S. And, to add even more fuel to the fire, the BMW 1M could come back with as much as 360 horsepower on tap – just enough to put the Focus RS and Golf R in their place. But, before we get too far into all of that, let’s take a short walk down memory lane before diving into hints offered by the first round of spy shots.
Updated 12/27/2017: Our spy photographers caught the upcoming BMW 1 Series out for a new testing session, this time during its first winter testing.
2020 Nissan Silvia S16
Between the 370Z and the GT-R, you could make the argument that Nissan already has a pretty solid lineup of sports cars. However, the more discerning enthusiasts out there will be quick to point out just how much more could be done. After all, the current Z car is practically ancient by modern standards given its introduction dates all the back to 2009, and at six figures, the current GT-R is just way too expensive for the average speed lover. That said, there’s one nameplate that desperately needs to be brought back into the discussion – the Silvia. The last time we saw this two-door beauty was in 2002 with the S15, and we think the time is right for a follow-up S16 generation to round out the Japanese automaker’s performance offerings. We know we’re certainly not alone in that respect, and indeed, the next-gen Silvia was expected to show in concept form at the 2017 Tokyo Motor Show. Alas, such a creation never surfaced, but fear not, because we did a little chin scratching, drew up the above-featured rendering, and wrote up the following speculative review to help bridge the gap.
It’s been over 15 years since the S15 bit the dust, so any follow-up has a bit of catching up to do. However, we think Nissan has the right stuff to make it work. Read on for our take on it.
Continue reading to learn more about the 2020 Nissan Silvia S16.