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The Latest News And Reviews
Throughout The Car Industry

Categories: Auto Shows

Maserati SUV To Debut In Frankfurt

On: Wed, Aug 31, 2011 at 2:27PM | By: Chris Weiss

Maserati SUV To Debut In Frankfurt  test 2

A concept version of Maserati's Jeep Grand Cherokee-based SUV will debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show. The production model will be built at Chrysler plant in Detroit beginning in 2013.

As you may or may not be aware, Maserati is in the process of building a luxury SUV to compete with the likes of the Porsche Cayenne. Previous rumors had indicated that the Jeep Grand Cherokee-based Maserati SUV would debut at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show. That is shaping up to be correct.

According to a recent Bloomberg report, a source confirms that Maserati will be giving the world its first look at how Detroit ruggedness combines with Italian flair at the Frankfurt Motor Show. It will unveil the initial concept version of the SUV at next month's show.

A Different Kind of Microbus From Mia Electric

On: Tue, Aug 30, 2011 at 12:05PM | By: Chris Weiss

Microbus From Mia Electric  test 2

While the world waits for an official Microbus decision from Volkswagen, a new player has swept in and stolen some of its thunder. In VW terms, "microbus" was but a nickname for Type 2 (T1 and T2). It wasn't an official model name. Over at Mia Electric, on the other hand, "Microbus" is an official model name.

Not only did France-based Mia Electric borrow VW's name, it borrowed some of its talent. The all-electric Microbus was designed by Murat Günak, former VW head of design. The design reinvents a quirky van for modern times by making it smaller, lighter and far more efficient than ever. According to the company, the standard Microbus weighs just 1,650 lbs. and the longest version adds about 20 lbs.

The Microbus is offered in three varieties: the standard, small-wheelbase version, a longer L model and the box van. While each is a different size, they all feature the same funky shape.

Ferrari 458 Spider Unveiled

On: Fri, Aug 26, 2011 at 3:29PM | By: Chris Weiss

Ferrari 458 Spider Unveiled test 1-1

The Ferrari 458 Spider is official! Thanks to months of leaks and rumors, there really isn't anything new to report, but we have the full scoop complete with the extra authority of a company-issued press release. After a big leak earlier this week, Ferrari decided to unveil the 458 Spider ahead of its Frankfurt public debut.

Subaru RWD, Frankfurt-Bound Sports Car Named 'BRZ'

On: Thu, Aug 25, 2011 at 5:01PM | By: Chris Weiss

Subaru RWD, Frankfurt-Bound Sports Car Named 'BRZ' test 2

So far, the sports-car partnership between Toyota has given us a whole lot of Toyota—two iterations of the FT-86 and a Scion-branded FR-S—and not a whole lot of Subaru. From Fuji Heavy Industries' car brand we've been left with the awkwardly named, 100-percent concept Boxer Sports Car Architecture Concept a.k.a. Rear-Wheel Drive Sports Car Technology Concept.

Well, the production Subaru is anticipated at this December's Tokyo Motor Show, so Subie doesn't have much time to go from transparent concept to full-fledged, production-ready car. The automaker will release the next concept version of the car at the Frankfurt Motor Show next month. And, we're happy to report, the model will finally have a simple name that doesn't give us cramped fingers.


Cadillac Unveils Ciel Convertible Concept

On: Thu, Aug 25, 2011 at 9:05AM | By: Chris Weiss

Cadillac Unveils Ciel Convertible Concept test 2

Last Wednesday, when Cadillac announced that it was producing the Converj plug-in concept as the ELR, it mentioned that it would launch a concept the following day at the Concours d'Elegance Pebble Beach. If you read it quickly, it appeared the concept was going to be the next version of the ELR, since the entire press release save for the last paragraph was about the ELR. But if you read a little closer, Cadillac simply said: "Cadillac will reveal another new concept car on Thursday, Aug. 18, at a special event prior to the annual Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance."

The new concept isn't the next iteration of its plug-in, but a classicly styled convertible that it calls the Ciel.

Kia Launches RWD Sports Car Concept

On: Wed, Aug 24, 2011 at 10:25AM | By: Chris Weiss

Kia Launches RWD Sports Car Concept test 1-1

Well, as promised, Kia has announced its own sporty sedan concept. Unfortunately, the car looks like a cheap Korean-made knockoff of the million-dollar Aston Martin One-77. Not exactly the best way to announce that you've arrived in the serious performance car market. The four-door rear-wheeler will make its debut at next month's Frankfurt Motor Show. Kia provided a sneak peak last week.

Despite the fact that its pointed headlamps and vertical air intakes look ripped off and dumbed down from the One-77, some of the car isn't a bad effort. The car packs four seats and four doors into a flowing, extended-coupe profile. We're not too sure we can take the hood-mounted rear-views seriously on a Kia, however. And from what we can see of it, that flat-faced rear-end yells misfortune.

Ford Revamps An Old Favorite - The 1.0-Liter

On: Mon, Aug 22, 2011 at 4:17PM | By: Chris Salamone

2011 Ford Fiesta test 2

The Big Three hasn’t graced the US auto market with a 1.0-liter engine since the early 1990s. But, rising gas prices combined with a sudden consumer appetite for small cars has captured the attention of at least one US automaker: Ford.

At the upcoming Frankfurt Auto Show, in September, Ford intends to showcase a 1.0-liter inline 3-cylinder engine which includes all the bells and whistles of modern technology. Their latest 3-cylinder looks to mark significant improvements over engines of yesterday, offering both efficiency and some modicum of fun-factor. In total, the latest 1.0-liter hopes to offer the same or better power as Ford’s current 1.6-liter normally aspirated engine while delivering better fuel economy and reduced emissions.

“No one’s ever built a three-cylinder engine quite like this,” stated Joe Bakaj, Ford Vice President of Global Powertrain Engineering. A bold claim indeed.

Society Of Automotive Historians Sets The Date

On: Mon, Aug 22, 2011 at 11:30AM | By: Chris Salamone

Jeff Mahl with the Thomas Flyer test 2

A car enthusiast, you say? What’s the difference between a member of the Society of Automotive Historians and your general car buff? The answer, it seems, is somewhat simple: professionalism. The folks down at the SAH take cars seriously. From books, to articles, to archives, the SAH exists for the sole purpose of exchanging knowledge about cars. Members have free access to their extensive resources and also receive the Society’s three publications: the SAH Journal, the Automotive History Review, and the ever-enticing Membership Directory (connecting members of similar interests around the globe). And most recently, the SAH released an announcement of the upcoming Annual Meeting in Hershey, Pennsylvania to be held October 7, 2011. Chocolate and cars, is there no greater glory?

Largest Display of James Bond Cars Ever Coming to U.K.

On: Mon, Aug 22, 2011 at 9:24AM | By: Chris Weiss

Largest Display of James Bond Cars Ever Coming to U.K. test 2

James Bond is more than just a movie character; he's the epitome of manhood. To be cliche, women want him and men want to be him. What man hasn't watched a James Bond flick and fantasized, even just for a moment, about being a wealthy, debonair international hero that always gets the girl. And the car.

Yes, James Bond's famous wheels rival only his catch phrases and girls in defining the timeless icon. Whether it's the 1964 Aston Martin DB5 from "Goldeneye" or the 1999 BMW Z8 from "The World is Not Enough," the car was as much a main character as the actor driving it. Many of the world's hottest marquees—Alfa Romeo, Aston Martin, Bentley, BMW, Lotus and so on—starred in a James Bond flick at one point or another, and now the largest collection of those cars is coming to a U.K. museum exhibition.

smart fortwo Electric Drive Gets Revamped For Frankfurt

On: Fri, Aug 19, 2011 at 9:17AM | By: Chris Weiss

Smart ForTwo Electric Drive Gets Revamped For Frankfurt test 2

Other cars, like the Nissan Leaf and Ford Focus Electric, may get all the ink, but they're not the only fully electric options on the market. Sure, the Mercedes-backed smart fortwo Electric Drive is a little goofy, and God forbid you ever get into a crash in the tiny two-seater, but it's an ultra-compact, fully electric ride that's hard to beat for city driving. Just think about how nice it must be to park that car on crowded city streets and at events.

An updated version of the smart fortwo Electric Drive will make its debut at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show next month. Mercedes has addressed some complaints in redesigning the EV.

Ferrari Leaning Toward V-12 For New Enzo

On: Wed, Aug 17, 2011 at 5:29PM | By: Chris Weiss

Ferrari Leaning Toward V-12 For New Enzo test 2

Last fall, Fiat unraveled a Ferrari road map detailing what cars were coming over the next few years and when we could expect them. From that, we know that Ferrari has saved its juiciest releases for next year. The company will unveil a successor for the Enzo as well as a replacement for its current flagship 599 GTB. A new Auto News report this week lends a closer look at these two cars.

According to the latest, Ferrari is leaning toward a V-12 engine for the next Enzo, which is being called the F70 internally. That contradicts an Autocar report from this past spring that Ferrari was thinking twin-turbo V-8 for the flagship. The V-12 is likely to carry somewhere in the range of 700 to 800 horses.