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2018 Volkswagen Golf Estate TGI GMOTION

2018 Volkswagen Golf Estate TGI GMOTION

Adding spice to a CNG five-door

The annual GTI Fest at Lake Worthersee in Austria is currently underway, and per tradition, Volkswagen is bringing along a pair of custom rides built by a select group of apprentices to show off the next generation’s skill set. In addition to the GTI Next Level that we featured earlier this week, there’s also this spruced-up five-door wagon dubbed the GMOTION, intended to bring a combination of “sporting character, elegance, and off-road capabilities.”

Continue reading to learn what makes the Volkswagen Golf Estate TGI GMOTION special.

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2019 Audi S6 Avant

2019 Audi S6 Avant

Style, speed, and plenty of space for things

Produced since 1994, the S6 is Audi’s go-faster version of the A6, slotting in under the even-faster RS6 variants. Currently offered as the fourth-generation C7, Audi revealed its fifth-gen A6 at the 2018 Geneva International Motor Show, and as such, a new S6 is on the way, as evidenced by this long-roofed Avant wagon prototype recently spied undergoing a bit of cold-weather testing. Read on for our speculative review on what we think it’ll bring to the table (beyond the groceries, obviously).

Continue reading to learn more about the 2019 Audi S6 Avant.

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2019 Audi A6 Avant

2019 Audi A6 Avant

Forbidden fruit for U.S. wagon enthusiasts

After seven years on the market, the seventh-generation Audi A6, also known as the C7, was finally retired in 2018, making way for a much-improved midsize sedan from the Ingolstadt-based automaker. Redesigned to look more modern inside and out and fitted with all the fancy tech that it needs to go against the competition, including semi-autonomous capability. With the A6 sedan unveiled to the world at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show, Audi quietly revealed the wagon version, also known as the A6 Avant.

Just like its predecessor, the Avant takes all of its design features and tech from the sedan model. The key difference here is the longer roof and the bigger trunk, which makes the Avant more practical for drivers who haul stuff on a regular basis and an ideal family vacation car. It’s as practical as any midsize wagon out there, but it comes with premium comfort features and the latest safety technology. Does it have what it takes to compete against the Mercedes-Benz E-Class Wagon and the BMW 5 Series Touring? Let’s find out in the review below.

Continue reading to learn more about the Audi A6 Avant.

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2018 Mazda6 Tourer

2018 Mazda6 Tourer

The more practical version of the Zoom-Zoom brand’s refreshed flagship

Mazda introduced the 6 nameplate in 2002 as a replacement for the highly successful Mazda 626. Offered as a near-premium mid-size four-door model, the 6 is now considered Mazda’s flagship model. Three generations have arrived since the 6 first hit the scene, the latest of which showed in 2012. Back in November, Mazda brought out a refreshed iteration at the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show (LAAS), dropping cover on a tweaked exterior style, a newly updated interior, fresh technology and equipment, and even a new turbocharged engine package. Suffice to say, we thought the whole thing looked great, so much so that we gave it a spot on our Best In Show list for the 2017 LAAS. Given the extensive updates seen for the 2018 model year, you could consider this latest iteration as the 3.5-gen vehicle. Now, the 6’s more practical Tourer wagon body style looks set to receive the same good stuff when it arrives in Switzerland with a debut at the 88th Annual Geneva International Motor Show.

All told, the 2018 Mazda6 Tourer should look and feel more premium than before, just like the latest sedan version that appeared in Southern California. Full details are still forthcoming, but for now, read on for the lowdown on what we know, plus a splash of speculation along the way.

Continue reading to learn more about the 2018 Mazda6 Tourer.

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Visual Comparison: 2019 Volvo V60 Wagon vs 2019 Kia Optima Sportswagon

Visual Comparison: 2019 Volvo V60 Wagon vs 2019 Kia Optima Sportswagon

These aren’t your grandfather’s wagons

There once was a time not too long ago when station wagons were becoming irrelevant. They still had a following, but fans of wagon we’re dwindling. Fast forward to the present, and the script has flipped entirely. Wagons are popular again, and a big part of that is the design reinvention they’ve enjoyed in recent years. Need two examples? Look no further than the Kia Optima Sportwagon and the Volvo V60.

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2019 Kia Optima Sportswagon

2019 Kia Optima Sportswagon

Two new engines, updated appearances, and updated safety tech for 2019

Kia Motors Europe is giving the Optima and Optima Sportswagon a mild mid-cycle refresh for the 2019 model year. The cars will go on display at the 2018 Geneva International Motor Show March 6 and will go on sale in Europe starting in the third quarter of 2018.

While the visual modifications are light, the 2019 Optima Sportswagon adds two new engines to its current lineup. These are designed to expand the Optima’s range and appeal, on top of the current plug-in hybrid powertrain and the sporty GT variant.

Continue reading for more on the 2019 Kia Optima Sportswagon.

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2018 Porsche Panamera by Techart

2018 Porsche Panamera by Techart

German tuner is elevating the Panamera to new heights

TechArt’s work on the Porsche Panamera extends all the way from the saloon’s introduction in 2009. We’ve seen the German tuner introduce different versions of its GrandGT tuning kit in the past eight years. At the 2018 Geneva Motor Show, TechArt is keeping the tradition alive with its latest and punchiest Panamera program to date. The kit is called the GrandGT Supreme, and as its name suggests, the program is a more sophisticated version of the standard GrandGT, one that features a more aggressive body kit, a more opulent interior, and enough power to justify its cutting-edge looks.

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2019 Volvo V60

2019 Volvo V60

Honey, I shrunk the V90!

After several years with slow sales and dated products, Volvo began to revive its vehicle lineup with a new architecture and a fresh design language. It started things off with the XC90 in 2014, but several models followed suit until 2017. The V60 remained the oldest car in the lineup to still feature the old design, but this just changed ahead of the 2018 Geneva Motor Show, as Volvo unveiled a new compact station wagon. After struggling to compete against similar offerings from BMW, Mercedes-Benz, and Audi for nearly eight years, the V60 finally has what it takes to climb higher in the compact premium segment.

Essentially a shrunken V90 on the outside, the V60 boasts the same tech and safety packages as the larger Volvo models. This makes it the most advanced vehicle in its class, despite both the Audi A4 Avant and Mercedes-Benz C-Class Wagon still being relatively new. It also gained most of the V90’s drivetrain lineup, which includes both gasoline and diesel mills, as well as a hybrid. But unlike the V90, the V60 gets a second, less powerful hybrid drivetrain for customers looking for a more affordable electrified vehicle. But let’s find out more about that in the review below.

Continue reading to learn more about the Volvo V60.

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2018 Volvo S60 & V60 Polestar Champion Edition

2018 Volvo S60 & V60 Polestar Champion Edition

Go faster, Swedish style

Volvo took a title win in the FIA World Touring Car Championship this year thanks to the efforts of Cyan Racing and its S60 Polestar TC1 racer. Leading the charge was driver Thed Bjork, who also managed to grab the Driver’s Championship, making him the first Swede to “win a motor racing world title” according to Volvo. In recognition of that, the brand is releasing upgraded iterations of the S60 sedan and V60 wagon dubbed the Polestar Performance World Champion Edition.

Continue reading to learn more about the Volvo S60 and V60 Polestar Champion Edition.

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2020 Mercedes-Benz CLS Shooting Brake

2020 Mercedes-Benz CLS Shooting Brake

Will the midsize Shooting Brake make it into a new generation?

After six years on the market with minor changes, the Mercedes-Benz CLS was redesigned and launched in its third-gen configuration in late 2017. Now sporting a more aggressive design with features borrowed from the AMG GT sports car, the four-door coupe boasts a more upscale interior borrowed from the E-Class and introduced a brand-new engine for Mercedes-Benz. A high-performance AMG CLS63 version is sure to follow, but word has it that the German firm may not launch a new Shooting Brake model now that station wagons are no longer popular. But until Mercedes says a firm no I’m hoping that the German shooting brake will make a comeback by the end of 2018.

The CLS Shooting Brake is much newer than the four-door coupe it is based on. While the CLS broke cover back in 2004, the Shooting Brake didn’t arrive until 2012, one year after Mercedes introduced the second-generation model. So if Merc decided to axe the nameplate, the CLS Shooting Brake will die after only five years on the market. It would be a shame to lose one of the only two affordable shooting brakes (the other being the CLA) and one of the very few premium wagons still available. You can see why I’m still hoping that the second-gen CLS isn’t the end of the road for this model. We should find out more about the wagon’s future in 2018 but until that happens, let’s find out what it may bring to the market if it survives.

Continue reading to learn more about the Mercedes-Benz CLS Shooting Brake.

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2017 Mercedes-AMG C 63 Estate By Vath

2017 Mercedes-AMG C 63 Estate By Vath

German tuner gives Mercedes wagon power for days

Estate vehicles, or wagons as we like to call them, aren’t supposed to do 211 mph. It’s just one of those things that don’t happen as far as automakers are concerned. But the car tuning world is a different story, and we see a good example of that with Vath’s latest tuning program for the Mercedes-AMG C 63 Estate.

A lot of us are familiar with Vath’s work in the past, especially when it comes to Mercedes-AMG models. It has put in work to develop kits for the AMG SL 65, AMG C 450, and the sedan version of the AMG C 63. Heck, it’s even worked on the previous version of the AMG C 63 Estate. To say that Vath knows what it’s doing with Mercedes-AMG models is an accurate portrayal of the tuner’s abilities, and we see those abilities on full display once again with its new program for the meaty estate. Pick a section of the AMG E 63, and there’s a chance that Vath has something for it. The estate’s exterior? Check. Interior? Check on that too. Drivetrain? You better believe it. There are even “miscellaneous items” on the table, just in case you’re in the mood to get those. This is the kind of comprehensive tuning program that Vath has built its name on. There may be more popular tuning firms in the world out there, but when it comes to quality Mercedes-AMG tunes, few are as consistently good as Vath.

Continue after the jump to read more about the Mercedes-AMG E 63 Estate by Vath

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2018 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake

2018 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake

Ferrari GTC4Lusso who?

Redesigned in 2012, the current Aston Martin Vanquish is set to retire in less than a couple of years in order to make way for a brand-new model, and the British firm is doing whatever it takes to spice things up before pulling the plug. In 2016, it unveiled a re-bodied version of the grand tourer made by Zagato, but the coupe was soon followed by a Volante version. 2017 brought a Speedster model as well, and with 2018 just around the corner Aston Martin and Zagato launched a new body style, the Shooting Brake. The wagon model will be as exclusive as its sibling and likely extremely expensive, but it’s an important milestone in a market where shooting brakes have almost gone the way of the dodo bird.

While the Vantage Zagato wagon arrived unexpectedly, it’s not exactly surprising that Aston Martin created a shooting brake. The British firm is no stranger to this body style, and it has released quite a few wagons in the past. Harold Radford built such versions of DB5, DB6, and DBS back in the 1960s, but Aston Martin made its very own production run of the Virage in the early 1990s. More recently, Bertone transformed the Rapide in a shooting brake, but these are just a few examples. We definitely need more shooting brakes on the market today, and even though the Vanquish Zagato is limited to very few examples, it will be great to see one more sports wagon hit public roads.

Continue reading to learn more about the Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake.

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2019 Gensis G70 Sportwagon

2019 Gensis G70 Sportwagon

Is Hyundai’s luxury brand ready to expand?

Launched in 2015, Genesis is the newest luxury brand on the market and the first such company to come from South Korea. Established after Hyundai rolled out increasingly more premium versions of the Genesis and Equus sedans, Genesis has already introduced three products since 2016. It all started with the G90, a redesigned and more luxurious version of the Equus, which was followed by the G80, a better replacement for the Hyundai Genesis. The third sedan, the G70, was introduced in late 2017 as a competitor for the highly popular BMW 3 Series, Mercedes-Benz C-Class, and Audi A4. Having already seen the G70 in all its glory, we began wondering what if Genesis decided to expand the lineup with a wagon?

Called the G70 Sportwagon by X-Tomi Designs, which provided the rendering of what could become Genesis first ever grocery getter, this luxury wagon would compete in a very small niche that no longer benefits from a global presence. While BMW, Mercedes-Benz, and Audi continue to sell station wagon versions of their compact sedans in Europe, the United States only gets the 3 Series Sports Wagon. The G70 Sportwagon not only would add a bit of drama to this market, but it could also come to the U.S. to give BMW a bit of action and maybe even motivate Mercedes-Benz and Audi to bring their own grocery getters over the pond. But, until that happens, let’s have a closer look at what this wagon could bring to the table.

Continue reading to learn more about the Genesis G70 Sportwagon.

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2018 Audi RS4 And RS5 Carbon Editions

2018 Audi RS4 And RS5 Carbon Editions

Lighter and leaner performance models are always good recipes for an improved driving experience

In a day and age where “special edition” models can mean just about anything under the sun, Audi has found a nifty trick to kill two birds with one stone by offering special edition models for the Audi RS4 Avant and the Audi RS5 Coupe. Officially, both models are have been designated as Carbon Editions, a nod to the smattering of carbon bits they received that help make them lighter and a bit more fun to drive on the open road.

The lightweight blueprint is a tried-and-tested one, and many automakers have taken that approach to squeeze out every ounce of improved performance they can out of their cars without having to pump more power out of the engines. Audi’s approach with the RS4 and RS5 Carbon Editions is similar by the sheer number of carbon fiber reinforced polymer add-ons both models received. The goal of replacing the standard parts with CFRP counterparts is to make both cars lighter, which is exactly what Audi accomplished. The RS4, for example, is now 80 kilos (176 pounds) lighter than its standard counterpart whereas the RS5 slashes 60 kilos (132 pounds) from its original weight. Does the weight loss spell massive improvements in performance? Not quite. But don’t think that these are “standard” RS4s and RS5s either. If anything, these two new special editions should be lighter on their feet, and we know what that equates to in the end.

Continue after the jump to read more about the Audi RS4 Avant and RS5 Coupe Carbon Editions.

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2018 Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo

2018 Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo

High-performance wagons aren’t extinct just yet!

If there’s one thing I don’t like about today’s hybrid car market, it’s the lack of station wagons. Seriously, you have plenty of options for every configuration, including supercars, but station wagons are pretty much restricted to a handful of models like the Toyota Auris wagon and the Volvo V90 T8. And you can’t even get the Toyota in the U.S. Fortunately, this just changed with the arrival of the arrival of the Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo. Sure, it’s not exactly affordable, but it’s a breath of fresh air if you’re in the market for a fast yet efficient vehicle with a little more room in the trunk than a standard sedan.

As you might have already guessed from the name, this Sport Turismo is essentially the wagon version of the Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid that Porsche introduced at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show. It has the same sporty design, but with a shooting brake roof, and the same powerful drivetrain that combines the company’s massive V-8 with an electric motor, and a battery. It’s the most powerful hybrid you can buy right now (that’s not a supercar, that is!) and it has no rival, especially in the station wagon niche. Let’s find out what makes it so attractive.

Continue reading to learn more about the Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo.

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2018 Audi RS4 Avant

2018 Audi RS4 Avant

The world’s greatest compact grocery getter?

Introduced in 1999, the Audi RS4 placed itself at the top of Audi’s compact car lineup. With a sportier, more aerodynamic exterior, exclusive features on the inside, and a more powerful engine, the RS4 quickly became a solid competitor for the BMW M3. However, unlike BMW, Audi also built a wagon version a created a brand-new niche for performance grocery getters. The RS4 Avant become such an important car in the Audi lineup, that the third-generation RS4 didn’t even get a sedan version. Come 2017 and a brand-new generation RS4 arrived, also introduced with an Avant variant only.

Essentially a beefed-up version of the latest A4 wagon, which already sports Audi’s new design language with more angular features, the RS4 Avant gained a brand-new engine that smaller, but more potent than the outgoing unit. The new performance wagon is also lighter than its predecessor, which had quite a few issues when compared to the awesome Mercedes-AMG C63 Estate. All told, Audi finally has a proper competitor for the souped-up Merc and we will find out what it brings to the table in the review below.

Continue reading to learn more about the 2018 Audi RS4 Avant.

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2017 Kia Proceed Concept

2017 Kia Proceed Concept

The company’s most daring design yet?

Launched in 2006 as a replacement for the Cerato, the Kia Cee’d is now one of the company’s most popular vehicles in Europe. Redesigned in 2012 into a more modern, better-looking car, the Cee’d, along with its Procee’d, GT, and station wagon variants, is getting a little long in the tooth, and a third-generation model is likely under way for 2018. While we don’t know much about it, Kia unveiled the Proceed concept at the Frankfurt Motor Show, giving us a good glimpse of what the next-gen Cee’d might bring to the table.

Described as an "extended hot hatch that presents a new body type for Kia," the Proceed concept appears to be the bastard child of a Kia Stinger and a low, sleek shooting brake. And it’s one of Kia’s most intriguing design to date. Not surprisingly, it was penned at the company’s European design center in Frankfurt, only 500 meters (0.3 miles) from where it will be unveiled. Kia also says that the Proceed concept indicates what the next-generation Cee’d "could look like," so we might be looking at a fancier version of the upcoming hatchback.

Continue reading to learn more about the Kia Proceed Concept.

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2018 Opel Insignia GSi Sports Tourer

2018 Opel Insignia GSi Sports Tourer

Looking good, hauling goods

German automaker Opel first offered the Insignia in 2008, replacing the Vectra and Signum in its lineup. Also sold as a Vauxhall in Britain, a Holden Commodore in Australia, and the a Regal in China and the U.S., we’ve already seen a fastback iteration of the model offered on this side of the pond as the new 2018 Buick Regal GS. Now, Opel is offering up a hot-to-trot wagon version called the GSi Sports Tourer. The GSi nameplate was pulled from previous go-faster versions of Opel’s street cars, with previous examples including the Manta GSi and Kadett GSi from the mid-‘80s, as well as the Kadett 2.0 GSi 16V and Astra GSi and Corsa GSi. Now, followingw a full reveal at the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show, there’s a new one that the automaker says was designed to be both fun and practical. Outside, you’ll find long, lean, wide, and horizontal styling elements, while under the hood resides a potent turbo 2.0-liter engine, all of which combines with a substantial amount of space in back for people and things.

This is Opel’s new flagship station wagon, so it makes sense the Germans gave it the royal treatment. In fact, Opel is so certain it’ll bring the sporting goods, it included a picture of a racing suit, helmet, and gloves in the back of the trunk in the press shots. But is it really worthy of such connotations? Read on the find out.

Continue reading to learn more about the Opel Insignia GSi Sports Tourer.

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2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class All-Terrain 4x4² Wagon

2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class All-Terrain 4x4² Wagon

One-off luxury wagon gets portal hubs, 31-inch tires, & 16 inches of ground clearance

God love Mercedes-Benz and its outlandish imagination for all things off-roading. The automaker has built a one-off 4x4² version of its new E-Class All-Terrain. Yes, a 4x4²! You’ll recognize that odd designation from the AMG G550 4x4², the four-wheeled version of the high-riding AMG G63 6x6. But it’s not just the name that’s similar. Mercedes actually fitted the E-Class wagon with the same Portal hubs as the G550 4x4². The extra height gives this AWD car a whopping 16 inches of ground clearance. That’s equal to a Humvee!

The project is the brainchild of Jürgen Eberle, a vehicle development engineer assigned to the E-Class. According to Auto Express, Eberle wanted to build something that gave the new 2017 E-Class All-Terrain some credence to its name. Eberle was eventually given a small budget after approaching his bosses with the idea. The E-Class suspension was modified to accommodate the large portal hub assemblies at each wheel, which drastically widened the E-Class’ track. This necessitated fender flares, which Eberle and his team crafted from carbon fiber. Beadlock wheel and 31-inch-tall winter tires were then added to round out the project. The best part – nothing else changes. The remainder of the exterior and all of the interior is standard E-Class All-Terrain, making this one awesome looker.

Continue reading for more on the Mercedes-Benz E-Class All-Terrain 4x4².

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