Report: Next Infiniti FX to gain interior volume

Filed under: Performance, Crossover, Infiniti, Luxury

2013 Infiniti FX37 front three-quarter

The Infiniti FX, soon to be renamed QX70 thanks to the Japanese brand’s convoluted naming scheme, is currently in the midst of its second-generation. And while we like the compact, sporty crossover’s driving character a lot, it lacks the “utility” part of the CUV moniker. That lack of cabin space will be addressed in the future, though.

Automotive News recently sat down with Nissan’s global design boss, Shiro Nakamura, to talk about the future of what he called “the icon of Infiniti.” And while Nakamura-san admitted the FX/QX70’s worth to the brand, its sales have long been something of a disappointment. “Exterior and styling-wise, it’s very strong as an icon. But to be honest, its sales volume has not been as big as we wanted,” a reality Nakamura believes is due largely to its tight cabin relative to its competition.

Finding the right balance might be difficult, though. The FX/QX70 is selling extremely well in both China and Russia, according to Nakamura, because of its looks. Altering that style in order to increase interior space risks alienating a new and important group of buyers for Infiniti. The designer put it best when he told AN, ” It is selling well in China and Russia because it stands out. So we want to maintain that striking look.” As it stands, we’ll likely be living with the current vehicle for a few more years – AN doesn’t expect the third-generation of the FX/QX70 to arrive until 2015 or 2016.

Next Infiniti FX to gain interior volume originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 03 Sep 2013 13:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Report: Next Infiniti FX to gain interior volume

Filed under: Performance, Crossover, Infiniti, Luxury

2013 Infiniti FX37 front three-quarter

The Infiniti FX, soon to be renamed QX70 thanks to the Japanese brand’s convoluted naming scheme, is currently in the midst of its second-generation. And while we like the compact, sporty crossover’s driving character a lot, it lacks the “utility” part of the CUV moniker. That lack of cabin space will be addressed in the future, though.

Automotive News recently sat down with Nissan’s global design boss, Shiro Nakamura, to talk about the future of what he called “the icon of Infiniti.” And while Nakamura-san admitted the FX/QX70’s worth to the brand, its sales have long been something of a disappointment. “Exterior and styling-wise, it’s very strong as an icon. But to be honest, its sales volume has not been as big as we wanted,” a reality Nakamura believes is due largely to its tight cabin relative to its competition.

Finding the right balance might be difficult, though. The FX/QX70 is selling extremely well in both China and Russia, according to Nakamura, because of its looks. Altering that style in order to increase interior space risks alienating a new and important group of buyers for Infiniti. The designer put it best when he told AN, ” It is selling well in China and Russia because it stands out. So we want to maintain that striking look.” As it stands, we’ll likely be living with the current vehicle for a few more years – AN doesn’t expect the third-generation of the FX/QX70 to arrive until 2015 or 2016.

Next Infiniti FX to gain interior volume originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 03 Sep 2013 13:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Spy Shots: Land Rover LR4 getting facelift and interior refresh

Filed under: Spy Photos, Land Rover, Luxury, Off-Road

Land Rover is preparing a slight freshening of the its seven-passenger, mid-range LR4 (known outside of North America as the Discovery 4). The LR4/Disco 4 is currently the second oldest model in the Land Rover range, besides the mostly forgotten LR2/Freelander, and while it’s still a competent entry, its age is beginning to show.

This refresh should allow it to soldier on until a replacement can be built, which logic would dictate is to be called LR5/Discovery 5. Until then, the current SUV gets the typical batch of headlight tweaks, along with a freshened front bumper. The side mirrors are new as well.

On the inside, we can also expect a long-awaited upgrade to the infotainment system. Jaguar and Land Rover have both struggled in this regard, so here’s hoping the new system offers an improvement.

The big news for the LR4 will come under its hood. Jaguar Land Rover as a whole has already phased out the excellent but thirsty 5.0-liter V8, with the only holdover being the supercharged variant. That means the V8 LR4 is not long for this world. Look for it to be replaced by the same supercharged, 3.0-liter V6 that’s offered as a base engine in the Range Rover and Range Rover Sport. As with the Jaguar XF we tested, ZF’s eight-speed automatic would likely harness the V6’s power.

Expect to see a refreshed LR4, likely before the end of 2013.

Land Rover LR4 getting facelift and interior refresh originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 19 Jul 2013 17:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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2013 Chevrolet Malibu gives us a glimpse of its interior

Filed under: Sedan, Chevrolet, GM, Shanghai Motor Show

malibu teaser pic interior

2013 Chevrolet Malibu interior teaser – Click above to enlarge

General Motors piqued our interest last week with a video glimpse of the 2013 Chevrolet Malibu (albeit in highly stylized rendered form), as well as a teaser image of its taillights. In the video, GM tells us the new Malibu will be wider than the outgoing Malibu with a more rakish exterior design. The teaser image goes a step further, showing us that the 2013 model’s taillights are strikingly similar to those at the butt of the Camaro.

Fast forward one week and The General is ready to give us another peek at the interior. As you can see from the photo above, the new Malibu will feature a more fluid cabin design than the current model with fewer buttons and GM’s new touch-friendly MyLink infotainment system prominently displayed.

It’s difficult to judge the new Malibu’s interior by looking at one intentionally poor-lit teaser images, but we see some serious potential. Here’s hoping the materials can match up to the LCD screen.

The Malibu will be unveiled on April 18 at the Shanghai Motor Show, and you’ll be able to watch the reveal live from Chevy’s Facebook page.

Gallery: 2013 Chevrolet Malibu teaser

[Source: Chevrolet]

2013 Chevrolet Malibu gives us a glimpse of its interior originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 08 Apr 2011 12:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Video: How Ford fights interior glare

Filed under: Etc., Technology, Videos, Ford

Ford Visual Performance Evaluation Lab fights interior glare

Ford Visual Performance Evaluation Lab – Click above to watch video after the jump

Engineers get to play with all the fun toys. Just look at the researchers within the Ford kingdom. In a quest to make sure FoMoCo cabins are easy to use no matter what the lighting conditions, the automaker has set up a special room with enough artificial light to accurately mimic the sun. All told, there are over 6,000 watts of power on hand, and the lamps ride on an automated track to provide various lighting angles. The room is part of the Ford Visual Performance Evaluation Lab.

Why go through the trouble of subjecting vehicle interiors to massive rays? With the increased number of LCD screens spread throughout its vehicles’ cabins, Ford wants to make sure that drivers can accurately and quickly access applicable information without being hindered by pesky hangups like screen glare.

It also sounds like a sweet place to spend time during the darker months of Michigan’s winter. Hit the jump to see a video of the lighting system for yourself.

[Source: Ford via Gizmodo]

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Video: How Ford fights interior glare originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 22 Mar 2011 16:57:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Mauro Lecchi’s Lamborghini yacht under construction, with Fenice Milano interior

Filed under: Etc., Lamborghini, Design/Style

Mauro Lecci Lamborghini motoryacht

Mauro Lecci Lamborghini motoryacht – Click above for high-res image gallery

When we first brought you Italian designer Mauro Lecchi’s vision of a Lamborghini power yacht, we were suitably intrigued, but didn’t imagine it would actually ever hit the water. Color us surprised, because apparently it is.

The design, “heavily contaminated by stretched lines”, according to the press release, takes its cues from Lamborghinis old and new and applies them to the 50-foot form of an express motor yacht. Available propulsion options range from an available pair of 550-horsepower V12s from Motori Marini Lamborghini, and ultimately top out at twin 950-horsepower Seatek turbodiesels. The first example of the Lamborghini-themed yacht is apparently now being built, incorporating lightweight carbon-Kevlar construction that promises to be significantly lighter than the usual fiberglass or even aluminum.

Just in case it isn’t flashy enough on the outside, Lecchi and company have contracted Fenice Milano to outfit the yacht’s interior spaces. Yes, that’s the same Fenice Milano that has gilded everything from the Fiat 500 to the Rolls-Royce Ghost. So you know it’ll be suitably decadent (or horrifying). We’ve updated the high-res image gallery below as the yacht undergoes construction, accompanied by Fenice Milano’s press release after the jump.

Gallery: Lamborghini poweryacht concept by Mauro Lecchi

[Source: Fenice Milano]

Continue reading Mauro Lecchi’s Lamborghini yacht under construction, with Fenice Milano interior

Mauro Lecchi’s Lamborghini yacht under construction, with Fenice Milano interior originally appeared on Autoblog on Sat, 12 Feb 2011 19:41:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Spy Shots: Ferrari 612 successor snapped again, interior revealed

Filed under: Spy Photos, Coupe, Performance, Ferrari

Ferrari 612 Successor

Ferrari 612 successor spy shots – Click above for high-res image gallery

It’s been less than a week since the last batch of shots of Ferrari’s 612 Scaglietti replacement have hit the Net. And while we were quick to dismiss the hunchbacked shape the last time around, this more revealing set of photos proves that the 612 does, in fact, take on a more traditional shooting brake design rather than that of a swoopy coupe.

Ferrari 612 successor interiorOur spies managed to get a quick glance inside the 612 replacement, and in addition to confirming that there’s an honest-to-goodness luggage compartment out back, we now have a relatively clear idea of what the cockpit looks like. In addition to heaps of the finest leather, we can see what appears to be a set of nicely bolstered seats and a Ferrari-spec steering wheel complete with the bright red “engine start” button and drive mode selector switch.

This latest Ferrari will undoubtedly be an eye-catching piece of machinery when the camouflage cladding is removed. Gorgeousness aside, we’re salivating at the rumors of a 670-horsepower 6.3-liter V12 being found underhood, meaning 0-60 should be ripped off in just 3.7 seconds and the car’s top speed should be well north of 200 miles per hour.

Gallery: Spy Shots: Ferrari 612 Successor

Ferrari 612 Successor spy shotsFerrari 612 Successor spy shotsFerrari 612 Successor spy shotsFerrari 612 Successor spy shotsFerrari 612 Successor spy shots

[Source: CarPix]

Spy Shots: Ferrari 612 successor snapped again, interior revealed originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 18 Jan 2011 12:29:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Detroit 2011: Johnson Controls ie:3 Concept reinvents the interior

Filed under: Detroit Auto Show, Technology, Design/Style

Johnson Controls ie:3 Interior Concept

Johnson Controls ie:3 Interior Concept – Click above for high-res image gallery

All the fancy technology automakers are planting inside our vehicles needs to be supplied from somewhere… like, say, Tier 1 automotive supplier Johnson Controls. The supplier is using the Detroit Auto Show to show off some of its latest wares, and it’s packaged a slew of goodies in the hollowed-out shell of a Kia Soul and called it the ie:3 concept. The little ‘ute has had all of its guts removed, with the drivetrain replaced by a 23-kWh lithium ion battery pack that sits beneath the floor, which Johnson Controls estimates is good for a 100-mile range.

The IE in ie:3 stands for Inspired Efficiency, and the 3 means there are three main benefits to the design: delighting buyers, allowing automakers to differentiate their products and expanding sustainability. All that may be more a bit of marketing fluff, but there’s at least some substance to the claims. For instance, the single-piece stamped seats save lots of space, allowing the reclining rear seats to be mounted higher than the fronts. Also notable is the so-called FaserTec seat pads that are made from natural fibers and are easily recyclable.

More innovation can be found in the vehicle’s headliner, which acts as a large speaker that frees up storage space where the door-mounted speakers would normally be found. However, perhaps the coolest bit of tech is the Human Machine Interface, consisting of a transparent heads-up display that rises from the dash, a 6.5-inch transflective display that doesn’t wash out in direct sunlight and another 8.8-inch central display that can be controlled either through a touch interface or a haptic controller mounted on a sliding rail between the two front seats.

It’s all pretty impressive, and, despite the fact that it’s got so much technology baked in (plus an entire battery pack under the floor), Johnson Controls has still managed to substantially increase interior space. See for yourself in our high-res image galleries below, and read all the details in the press release after the break.

Gallery: Johnson Controls ie:3 Interior Concept: Detroit 2011

Johnson Controls ie:3 Interior ConceptJohnson Controls ie:3 Interior ConceptJohnson Controls ie:3 Interior ConceptJohnson Controls ie:3 Interior ConceptJohnson Controls ie:3 Interior Concept

Gallery: Johnson Controls ie:3 Interior Concept

Johnson Controls ie:3 Interior ConceptJohnson Controls ie:3 Interior ConceptJohnson Controls ie:3 Interior ConceptJohnson Controls ie:3 Interior ConceptJohnson Controls ie:3 Interior Concept

Live photos copyright (C)2011 Jeremy Korzeniewski / AOL

Detroit 2011: Johnson Controls ie:3 Concept reinvents the interior originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 11 Jan 2011 12:57:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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2011 Chrysler 300 interior image arrives on web

Filed under: Sedan, Chrysler

2011 Chyrsler 300 Interior

2011 Chyrsler 300 Interior – Click above for high-res image gallery

If you’ve been itching to see exactly what the designers at Chrysler have cooked up for the next-generation 300 interior, itch no more. A photo of the car’s cabin has managed to sneak past the watchful eyes of Chrysler bosses and make its way to the web, and from what we can tell, buyers can expect to see plenty of the company’s new-found attention to detail inside. Attractive wood trim accents the door panels, dash, center stack and steering wheel, and it looks like the new 300 will make use of the same delicious touch screen navigation system that we played with in both the 2011 Dodge Charger and 2011 Dodge Journey.

The changes easily take care of the much harped-on interior of the current generation 300. Expect to see the big sedan bow with a 292-horsepower version of the new Pentastar V6 as well as a 360-horsepower 5.7-liter V8. Chrysler hasn’t said whether or not an SRT8 version is in the cards, but we’d be surprised if we didn’t see a muscle-bound version of the vehicle show up in the near future.

Gallery: 2011 Chrysler 300 teasers

2011 Chrysler 300 teaser2011 Chrysler 300 teaser2011 Chrysler 300 teaser2011 Chrysler 300 teaser

[Sources: Automotive News, Es.Autoblog]

2011 Chrysler 300 interior image arrives on web originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 13 Dec 2010 13:58:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Spy Shots: BMW 3 Series caught testing, interior revealed for first time

Filed under: Spy Photos, Sedan, BMW

BMW 3 Series spy shots

BMW 3 Series spy shots – Click above for high-res image gallery

Lately, we’ve been hearing a lot about BMW’s plans to expand its model line with more niche models like the X6 and 5 Series Gran Turismo. We’ve heard talks of a new X4 crossover, a 3 Series GT and even a hatchback M3. It’s all a bit maddening, yes, but never fear – BMW has not forgotten about its core models, especially the all-important 3 Series sedan. After all, the four-door 3er is quite possibly the most important benchmark vehicle in the automotive marketplace. We do talk about it quite a bit.

BMW 3 Series interior spy shotOur sneaky spy photographers have just snapped this 3 Series prototype out testing on public roads, and while the exterior hasn’t been altered too much from other development cars we’ve seen, our photogs managed to snap the 3er’s reworked interior for the first time. Breathe easy, folks – it isn’t too far removed from what we’ve come to know in the current E90 car. The dash has more sculpted lines, the steering wheel is beefier and has some more functional buttons and the center console features BMW’s new remote-sized shifter.

We’re still unsure as to what BMW has lurking under the hood, but we can expect the usual host of six-cylinder powertrains, both turbocharged and naturally aspirated. Of course, there’s always the possibility of a four-cylinder option, too. Until we get the official word, we’ll hug our current E90s and wait patiently. See the latest set of spy shots for yourself in the gallery below.

Gallery: Spy Shots: BMW 3 Series

BMW 3 Series spy shotsBMW 3 Series spy shotsBMW 3 Series spy shotsBMW 3 Series spy shotsBMW 3 Series spy shots

[Source: KGP Photography]

Spy Shots: BMW 3 Series caught testing, interior revealed for first time originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 19 Nov 2010 16:29:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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