The Latest News And Reviews
Throughout The Car Industry
There are cars that are fun to read about, and then there are cars that make you wish the talking heads would just shut up and show some video. And even though I'm technically one of those talking heads, I've long wished that I could just shut up and show some video when it comes to the Noble M600; because this is a car that promises to perform in a way that its specs might underestimate.
Well, I can now shut my mouth and put up some video.
It seems that carmakers these days want to make sure they explore every avenue imaginable. They want to see that there is a car to fit every need, want, or even whim. We have all-wheel drive Ferraris, Porsche SUVs, and even four hundred horsepower Jeeps; there really is something for everyone. And now, there's one more option out there for those that have been dreaming of it: The Mini Cooper Countryman S All4.
Don't be mistaken, this car, err, truck, er, uh... crossover... yeah, crossover is still a Mini. It runs with the same 1.6-liter inline four cylinder 181-horsepower engine as the standard Cooper, the same six-speed manual gearbox, same big tachometer front and center, and has the same standard Cooper's quirky personality. The only real difference is that the Countryman S All4 is bigger by two doors and taller by a few inches. The only other big difference is that the All4 runs through... you guessed it... all four wheels instead of the traditional two Coopers have been accustomed to.
Announced a couple of weeks ago, and revealed ahead of its official debut at the Concorso d'Eleganza Villa d'Este last week, the Ferrari Superamerica 45 is the latest, privately commissioned one-off built by Ferrari Special Projects. It was commissioned by New York real estate mogul Peter Kalikow to celebrate his 45 years of Ferrari ownership.
Posted In: Special / Limited Edition, Exotics
Tags: Ferrari, special editions, one-offs, SA Aperta, Superamerica 45
Honda has released the first official photos of the CR-Z Mugen, a tuned-up concept that will debut at the Goodwood Festival of Speed this July. The prototype is a supercharged version of the CR-Z that adds some pep and performance to the hatch's eco-heavy resume.
The CR-Z Mugen is being developed jointly by Honda and Honda's tuning arm Mugen Euro. It will provide an enviable mix of hybrid-powered fuel economy and on-tap speed and performance.
Tags: pictures, Honda, CR-Z, CR-Z Mugen, tunes, hot hatch
Once again, Zagato is here and it doesn't disappoint. Built to celebrate 50 years of Aston-Zagato collaboration, the all-new Aston-Zagato concept, which doesn't appear to have a unique name outside of "V12 Zagato", was unveiled a day ahead of its official debut at the Villa D'Este Concours in Lake Como, Italy last week.
Aston and Zagato's first collaboration was the 1960 DB4GT Zagato, so the V12 Zagato was built with that roadster in mind, a fact that is immediately evident from the concept's short, muscular stance. Much more of a fastback design than modern Astons, the V12 has an impressively sharp, slung-back roofline that dives right down to the rear-end, a rear-end that is in itself thoroughly sharp and angled. The handcrafted aluminum body allows for curves and shapes that wouldn't be possible with pre-formed panels, according to the companies. The muscular haunches immediately jump out as a defining feature.
When I first read Popular Mechanics article title "10 Cars That Deserved to Fail," I immediately started thinking about some of the most notorious failures in automotive history. The explosively terrible and embarrassing Ford Pinto. The not-buying-it-no-matter-how-cheap-it-is Yugo GV. And so on.
Indeed, both those models showed up not far down the list. It would be hard to write any list of "car fails" without including them. What's more interesting about the list is some of the more recent, more subtle car failures that I probably would never have thought of.
Tags: lists, fails, car failures, fun, Popular Mechanics, bad cars
Volkswagen is getting ready to open its plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee, on May 24. The plant will build the new Passat, and it’s a key piece in VW's strategy to become the world's largest automaker.
The $1 billion factory will eventually build up to 150,000 Passats. The next Passat will be priced at $20,000, about $8,000 cheaper than the European version, thanks to the fact that U.S. wages are lower, the design is simpler, and local content will be used.
Now I have to warn you Corvette people: What you’re about to read may be upsetting and could result in conniptions and all manner of carrying-on. So if you have a heart condition, a “Jake” tattoo, or a child named “Zora,” you better stop reading right now.
For the rest of you, it might interest you to note that you can see an incredible collection of American Muscle—built by all the finest brands in the business—from now until Father’s Day weekend at a little spot in Bowling Green, Kentucky, the locals like to call the National Corvette Museum.
No, I’m not kidding. Right in the very place created to revere the Corvette there’s a display of 14 of the finest classic muscle cars America ever produced, with nary a Corvette—and only three Chevys—to be seen.
Posted In: Auto Shows, Classics, Special / Limited Edition
Tags: National Corvette Museum, display, Bowling Green, KY, Corvette, Buick Grand Sport, Camaro RS convertible, Chevelle SS convertible, Trans Am Ram Air
I wish that someone would poke a fork into the whole SUV/CUV/crossover trend and just end it all ready. But unfortunately, the closest we're going to get is putting a fork on an SUV, a trident to be specific. According to Car and Driver, Maserati will be the next high-end brand to build an SUV, following in the footsteps of Porsche, Alfa Romeo, and others.
The report says that Maserati will debut an SUV by 2014. The SUV will be developed at Chrysler HQ in Detroit and will be based on the Jeep Grand Cherokee. Not much else is offered on the Maser jeep, but we don't have high hopes (Cayenne with a trident? No, thanks).
Posted In: Car News, Reports, Rumors, Exotics
Tags: Maserati, SUV, Ferrari, new cars, rumors, Crossover,
So far, the partnership between Toyota and Subaru has been all Toyota. Beginning in 2009, Toyota has shown three versions of the jointly developing sports car platform: the original Toyota FT-86 in Tokyo 2009, the Toyota FT-86 II at this year's Geneva Motor Show, and the Scion FR-S at the New York Auto Show just last month. Meanwhile, Subaru has shown only a shell of a concept meant to convey its rear-wheel layout.
But, that will all change this year, with Subaru catching up in a hurry.
Posted In: Auto Shows, Car News, Reports
Tags: subaru, toyota, ft-86, sports coupes, concepts,
Just days ago, Hyundai Motor Company began sales of the extremely limited edition Genesis Prada. Hyundai plans to sell 1,200 vehicles initially in the Korean market, then later expand into the Middle East and China. Genesis Prada is such an exclusive vehicle that each car will be built to customized personal orders, uniquely sporting a GP500 emblem intended to emphasize scarcity.
Posted In: Car News, Special / Limited Edition
Tags: Hyundai, Genesis, Prada, Korea, Korean, Seoul, saffiano, exclusive, colors, scarcity, scarce