Official: New Mini to bow on Nov. 18, on Alec Issigonis’ birthday

Filed under: Budget, Performance, Hatchback, Mini

F56 Mini Hardtop covered

Miniacs, note November 18 on your calendar. That’s when the all-new Mini Hardtop will debut. Now, this might not be a great deal of news, after all, we already showed you the car, codenamed F56, a few weeks ago. But this full unveiling should bring with it even more detailed exterior images, a full look at the cabin and if we’re lucky, performance numbers.

History buffs will also note that November 18 is the birthday of Sir Alec Issigonis. It was Issigonis that penned the original idea for the Mini on a cocktail napkin, envisioning a car with a transversely mounted engine, the wheels pushed out to all four corners and plenty of cabin space for occupants. That car had a remarkably small footprint and was quite efficient, perfect for tackling the fuel shortages brought on by the Suez Crisis in 1959’s Great Britain. An unintended side-effect of its design was that it was also an absolute hoot to drive.

The November 18 debut will take place at Mini’s home, Plant Oxford, in the UK. Following that, November 20 will see a near-simultaneous debut at both the Tokyo Motor Show and Los Angeles Auto Show. We’ll be on hand to bring you all the details.

Continue reading New Mini to bow on Nov. 18, on Alec Issigonis’ birthday

New Mini to bow on Nov. 18, on Alec Issigonis’ birthday originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 07 Aug 2013 13:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Video: Watch one man drive a KTM X-Bow at the track, then get the girl

Filed under: Motorsports, Videos, Specialty, MISC, Racing

KTM X-Bow race track

C’etait un Rendezvous is a legendary film with a very simple premise – a man drives very quickly to be with the woman he loves, careening through the streets of Paris with a blatant disregard for things like road signs, speed limits and pigeons. This film, from South African director Seagram Pearce, has a similar but much more law-abiding plot.

An unnamed racer arrives a track, gets his safety gear on, and zips around at the wheel of a KTM X-Bow. All the while, a beautiful woman watches on, with the driver finishing the film alongside his leading lady.

Take a look below for the stylized, beautifully filmed piece.

Continue reading Watch one man drive a KTM X-Bow at the track, then get the girl

Watch one man drive a KTM X-Bow at the track, then get the girl originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 31 Jul 2013 12:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Report: Mercedes S65 AMG to bow in LA, S600 in Detroit

Filed under: Detroit Auto Show, LA Auto Show, Hybrid, Sedan, Performance, Mercedes-Benz, Luxury

Between the launch of the 2014 Mercedes S-Class, the debut of the S63 AMG (shown above) and reports about a new “super S-Class,” the Mercedes-Benz flagship sedan has been in the news a lot lately. According to Car and Driver, Mercedes plans to introduce three new flavors of the latest S-Class at the Frankfurt, LA and Detroit auto shows.

We already heard that the plug-in hybrid version will be introduced at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September, but this new report says that the V12-powered S65 AMG and S600 models will soon follow. At the LA Auto Show in November, the S65 AMG will hit the stage with a twin-turbo V12 expected to produce more than the current model’s 621 horsepower. This should make for one quick S-Class, no doubt able to shave a few ticks off the 2014 S63 AMG’s 0-60 time of 3.9 seconds.

Following the S65’s debut, Mercedes will reportedly take the wraps off its S600, which will use a less-powerful version of the mighty V12. The 2013 model year S600 produces 510 hp from its 5.5-liter twin-turbo V12, which is enough to propel the sedan to 60 miles per hour in 4.5 seconds. The updated version should only improve those figures. Stay tuned.

Mercedes S65 AMG to bow in LA, S600 in Detroit originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 30 Jul 2013 15:59:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Official: Aston Martin Vanquish Volante to bow at Pebble Beach

Filed under: Convertible, Performance, Aston Martin, Misc. Auto Shows, Luxury

2014 Aston Martin Vanquish Volante Front Three-Quarter

Aston Martin is one of the featured marques at the 2013 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. With events set for August 14 through 17 and the show itself on August 18, the British brand is going all out in showing its sleek, powerful GT cars to the throngs of well-heeled attendees.

The star of the show will be the Vanquish Volante, which will be receiving its global debut. It will be joined by the CC100 Speedster Concept, Aston Martin’s centenary birthday present to itself, and the new V12 Vantage S, which is also getting its first live showing here.

All three cars feature the brand’s excellent 6.0-liter V12. With that under hood, the Vanquish Volante and V12 Vantage S deliver 565 horsepower and top speeds of 183 and 205 miles per hour, respectively.

The Autoblog team will be on hand at this year’s show, so be sure to check back to see all the high-dollar metal on the California coast.

Continue reading Aston Martin Vanquish Volante to bow at Pebble Beach

Aston Martin Vanquish Volante to bow at Pebble Beach originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 17 Jul 2013 18:32:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Suzuki Kizashi EcoCharge and Apex concepts bow in New York [w/video]

Filed under: Concept Cars, New York Auto Show, Hybrid, Sedan, Performance, Suzuki

Suzuki Kizashi EcoCharge

Suzuki Kizashi EcoCharge Concept – Click above for high-res image gallery

Suzuki is building a car that we wish more people knew about – the Kizashi. The automaker’s mid-size sedan was featured in Suzuki’s first-ever Super Bowl ad, a modified version set a Bonneville speed record and the stock car traveled a grueling trail from Tokyo to Los Angeles. Now, Suzuki has prepared two new concept versions, showing us what might be in store for the Kizashi down the road. And believe us, are fingers are crossed that these two make it to production.

First up, the Kizashi EcoCharge Concept is a hybrid sedan that adds a touch of style to a segment rarely getting that extra dash of curb appeal. (Sorry, Ford Fusion Hybrid – you aren’t nearly as pretty as this thing.) Traditional gasoline oomph is provided courtesy of a 2.0-liter inline-four, while a 15-kilowatt motor and 115-volt, air-cooled, lithium-ion battery give the EcoCharge its electric giddy-up. Suzuki says the combination is good for a 25 percent increase over the standard Kizashi’s 30-mile-per-gallon highway fuel-economy rating. But it’s not just the hybrid powertrain providing the MPG lift – the Kizashi EcoCharge Concept is fitted with start/stop, has regenerative braking and wears low-rolling resistance tires.

To help it stand apart from its standard Kizashi siblings, Suzuki has gussied up the exterior of the EcoCharge. Unique headlights, LEDs in the fascia and a white satin paint job communicate that this Kizashi has something else going on. The LEDs also help communicate that this is still a concept, since we don’t think the local authorities would be too fond of the blue lights up front (they’re illegal, y’all).

The EcoCharge wasn’t the only sedan on the stand. On the other end of the spectrum, the automaker debuted something more focused on outright performance rather than efficiency.

Continue reading Suzuki Kizashi EcoCharge and Apex concepts bow in New York

Continue reading Suzuki Kizashi EcoCharge and Apex concepts bow in New York [w/video]

Suzuki Kizashi EcoCharge and Apex concepts bow in New York [w/video] originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 20 Apr 2011 03:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Refreshed 2012 Kia Soul to bow at New York Auto Show

Filed under: New York Auto Show, Budget, Hatchback, Kia

Kia Soul spy shots

2012 Kia Soul spy shots – Click above for high-res image gallery

According to a newsletter sent out by the New York Auto Show organizers, Kia will debut its refreshed 2012 Soul hatchback as part of next week’s festivities. In addition to a slightly revised front fascia complete with LED running lamps, the funky hatch will receive a number of powertrain enhancements for the 2012 model year.

Most significantly, the Soul will benefit from the addition of new six-speed transmissions, likely in both manual and automatic forms. According to Kia, this means the 2012 Soul will achieve nearly 35 miles per gallon on the highway – a healthy boost over the current car’s fuel economy rating of 24/30 mpg city/highway when equipped with the 2.0-liter engine and five-speed manual shifter.

As we reported earlier, Kia will also debut the 2012 Rio in New York, boasting new direct-injection technology and fuel economy ratings of over 40 mpg. Stay tuned for the full details next week.

Gallery: Spy Shots: Next-generation Kia Soul

Spy Shots: Next-generation Kia SoulSpy Shots: Next-generation Kia SoulSpy Shots: Next-generation Kia SoulSpy Shots: Next-generation Kia SoulSpy Shots: Next-generation Kia Soul

[Source: New York Auto Show | Images: CarPix]

Refreshed 2012 Kia Soul to bow at New York Auto Show originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 14 Apr 2011 13:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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KTM X-Bow finally on sale in North America

Filed under: Convertible, Performance, Europe, Audi, Racing

KTM X-Bow

KTM X-Bow – Click above for high-res image gallery

Long ago, we told you that the KTM X-Bow was coming to the United States in street-legal form. Now, the magic moment is upon us – the Audi-powered, carbon fiber X-Bow is available now as a special construction vehicle kit car through British Racing Group, LLC.

The X-Bow is powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged Audi four-cylinder with direct injection, good for 240 horsepower. While 240 hp isn’t exactly astronomical by anyone’s standards, the X-Bow’s Formula 1-style carbon fiber monocoque chassis means it’ll shoot to 60 miles per hour in less than four seconds. This lightweight chassis also helps the X-Bow pull 1.5g on a skidpad if you’re running track tires. When you finally manage to terrify yourself and your passenger, as you inevitably will, huge Brembo brakes will bring you to a halt from 60 mph in just 99 feet.

To get the car legal for stateside use, KTM has to import the X-Bow as a kit car, which means supplying the Audi powerplant is up to you. To get your hands on one, contact British Racing Group, where you’ll get an estimated purchase price proposal from one of the customer relations specialists.

Gallery: KTM X-Bow

[Sources: British Racing Group via Lotus Talk]

KTM X-Bow finally on sale in North America originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 24 Feb 2011 14:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Toyota Yaris HSD concept to bow in Geneva

Filed under: Concept Cars, Budget, Hybrid, Geneva Motor Show, Europe, Hatchback, Toyota

Toyota Yaris HSD Concept

Toyota has announced that the company will be showing off a new concept at next month’s Geneva Motor Show. The Japanese stalwart has big plans for the B-segment in the near future, and those include bringing a full hybrid system to some of the smallest cars on the road, and we’ll all get a glimpse into how the automaker plans to do that with the Yaris HSD Concept. Details are remarkably murky at the moment, and while we’d love to be able to tell you all about the vehicle’s drivetrain and fuel economy, it looks like we’ll just have to wait until the vehicle gets its official unveil next month.

The Japanese automaker is hoping to bring hybrid efficiency to the most popular segment in Europe, though the Yaris HSD will have to show off some pretty incredible fuel economy numbers and performance to match in order to best the small-displacement diesel mainstays of the market across The Pond.

Toyota will also show off the seven-seat Prius+ at the show. Hit the jump for the full press blast.

[Source: Toyota]

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Toyota Yaris HSD concept to bow in Geneva originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 18 Feb 2011 11:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Officially Official: 2012 BMW 1 Series coupe and convertible take a bow

Filed under: Convertible, Coupe, Performance, BMW

2012 BMW 1 Series Convertible

2012 BMW 1 Series – Click above for high-res image gallery

BMW recently pulled the wraps off of its hot new 1 Series M Coupe, but this new addition to the automaker’s least expensive range isn’t the only changes on tap for the 2012 model year. Both the coupe and convertible versions of the 128i and 135i receive modest upgrades for 2012, including very, very slight styling updates and a new powertrain for the 135i.

Up front, 1 Series cars equipped with Xenon headlamps (optional on 128i, standard on 135i) receive a new horizontal LED eyebrow to complement the corona running lamps. Out back, newly tweaked taillamps use LED running lamps similar to those on the rest of the BMW product line. The 1 Series also gets a tweaked M Sport package that includes an aero kit (standard on the 135i), increased top speed limiter and more sporting suspension geometry. Additionally, M Sport cars are fitted with sport seats and M-branded interior trim components.

Much like its older brother, the 3 Series, the 135i is now powered by BMW’s N55 3.0-liter inline-six which uses a single twin-scroll turbocharger to produce 300 horsepower and 300 pound-feet of torque. In addition to the standard row-it-yourself six-speed transmission, the 135i can now be had with BMW’s seven-speed DCT that first debuted in the Z4 roadster. Fitting this new engine means that the 135i Coupe can run to 60 miles per hour in five seconds flat with DCT and 5.1 seconds with the manual (add 0.3 seconds to those respective times for the droptop 135i). The base 128i continues to use the naturally aspirated 3.0-liter mill found in the outgoing model, rated at 230 hp and 200 lb-ft and paired with six-speed manual or Steptronic transmissions.

Pricing for the 2012 1 Series will be revealed closer to the car’s on-sale date in the Spring of 2011, and we wouldn’t expect the current base price of $29,450 for the 128i and $36,350 for the 135i to change much. Follow the jump for BMW’s exhaustive press release that details the full host of changes.

Gallery: 2012 BMW 1 Series

2012 BMW 1 Series2012 BMW 1 Series2012 BMW 1 Series2012 BMW 1 Series2012 BMW 1 Series

Gallery: 2012 BMW 1 Series Coupe

2011 BMW 1 Series Coupe2011 BMW 1 Series Coupe2011 BMW 1 Series Coupe2011 BMW 1 Series Coupe2011 BMW 1 Series Coupe

Gallery: 2012 BMW 1 Series Convertible

2012 BMW 1 Series Convertible2012 BMW 1 Series Convertible2012 BMW 1 Series Convertible2012 BMW 1 Series Convertible2012 BMW 1 Series Convertible

[Source: BMW]

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Officially Official: 2012 BMW 1 Series coupe and convertible take a bow originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 15 Dec 2010 18:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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300-hp KTM X-Bow R revealed

Filed under: Convertible, Performance

2011 KTM X-Bow R – Click above for high-res image gallery

The KTM X-Bow may not be the prettiest ride on the track, but looks don’t help you win races. With 240 horsepower motivating a mere 1,742 pounds, the X-Bow has plenty of punch to dice through a track with relative ease. And if 240 ponies can help you win at the track or the next stop light, then 300 horsepower ought to be even better. We caught wind of rumors back in July that KTM was prepping just such a beast, with the ability to hit 60 miles per hour in a scant three seconds, and it looks like those rumors were based in fact.

KTM has officially announced that the new X-Bow R is, in fact, the real deal, with a 300 horsepower version of the turbocharged 2.0-liter Audi engine sourced from the S3. The X-Bow R will also sit lower with a lower engine mounting to increase cornering speeds and impress your friends at the same time. The R model will reportedly come in two forms; a “Sport” variant for the street and a “Race” pack for the track.

If you’re already one of the 500 existing X-Bow owners, don’t worry about your sudden case of horsepower envy. KTM is said to be prepared to offer many of the parts that add up to an R designation through X-Bow PowerParts, giving owners the opportunity to tune their four-wheeled motorcycle to Sport or Race specifications. Additional details and pricing information will be available after the first of the year.

Gallery: 2011 KTM X-Bow R

[Source: CarScoop]

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300-hp KTM X-Bow R revealed originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 27 Sep 2010 18:40:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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