Thursday, February 25, 2010

Hot News: Hummer is Dead


General Motors has announced its intention to shut down the Hummer brand after its planned sale to Sichuan Tengzhong Heavy Industrial Machines collapsed.

The off-road brand looks set to join Saturn and Pontiac on the scrap heap of failed GM brands.

The only hope for Hummer would be a surprise last minute bidder, such as Spyker's rescue of Saab, but that seems unlikely at this stage. Hummer sales have continued to slump amid the financial crisis and rising fuel prices.

"One year ago, General Motors announced that we were going to divest HUMMER, as part of focusing our efforts on Chevrolet, Buick, GMC and Cadillac going forward," explained John Smith, GM vice president of corporate planning and alliances. "We have since considered a number of possibilities for HUMMER along the way, and we are disappointed that the deal with Tengzhong could not be completed.

"GM will now work closely with HUMMER employees, dealers and suppliers to wind down the business in an orderly and responsible manner," said Smith.

The company has declared it will honour all Hummer warranties as well as providing parts and services to existing owners around the world.

Thanks to: Car Point

Hot News: Mercedes Plans E-Class Diesel-Hybrid


Mercedes has confirmed it will launch its first diesel-electric hybrid later this year.

The E300 BlueTec hybrid will be the firm’s first ever diesel-electric hybrid car; it will reach European showrooms early in 2011.

The BlueTec will be powered by a specially tuned twin-turbocharged 2.2-litre four-cylinder diesel engine from the E250 CDI. Mercedes claims the car is capable of more than 56mpg.

It will share many of its hybrid components, including the lithium ion battery pack and electric motor, with the S400 hybrid.

Mercedes has been pleased with the initial sales of the S400 hybrid, which currently accounts for around 15 per cent of all S-class sales in Germany.

The firm intends to develop plug-in hybrid and electric propulsion systems alongside traditional combustion engines for at least the next 20 years. All future Mercedes will be underpinned by modular platforms which can house all three powertrain options, previewed in Geneva’s F800 Style concept car.

Thanks to: Autocar

New Car; 2011 Pagani Tricolore


The Pagani Zonda Tricolore has been revealed, ahead of its Geneva motor show unveiling.

The Tricolore edition has been made to honour the Italian air force aerobatics team, known as the Frecce Tricolori.

Based on the exclusive Zonda Cinque, the Tricolore is constructed from a carbon-titanium weave. The car is unpainted except for a clear blue lacquer and red, white and green stripes that run up from the nose along the top of the car's surface.

The car's also distinctive for having extra air vents and LED running lights over the Zonda Cinque.

Only one Pagani Zonda Tricolore is being sold, for 1.3 million euros (£1.2m).

The Zonda is due to be replaced by the new Pagani C9 later this year.

Thanks to: Autocar

Sneak Peek: Lotus Evora 414E Hybrid Concept


Lotus is going green! This is the first teaser shot of the Evora 414E hybrid - a showcase for the firm’s latest eco technology. It uses the standard Evora chassis, but the petrol-powered drivetrain has been replaced by a plug-in hybrid system backed up by a 47bhp three-cylinder 1.2-litre range extender engine.

Each rear wheel is driven by an electric motor which produces 204bhp, or 207 metric horsepower, hence the car’s name. And because each rear wheel is driven independently, Lotus has been able to develop a sophisticated torque vectoring system, which adjusts the power to each wheel improving stability at speed, increasing manoeuvrability around town and eliminating understeer in cornering.

The motors draw power from lithium polymer batteries which are mid-mounted to optimise the weight distribution. The car can travel 35 miles on electric power alone, and the cells can be recharged overnight from a household plug. For longer journeys, the range extender engine kicks in to increase the range to over 300 miles.

Lotus claims the hybrid will sprint from 0-60mph in under four seconds. To increase driving thrills, the sensation of gearchanges has been engineered in, despite the car only having a single-speed transmission. The 414E also features HALOsonic sound synthesis, which mimics a number of different engine sounds both inside and outside the car. For more details click here.

Thanks to: Auto Express

Spied: 2011 BMW 5-Series Touring


BMW's all-new 2010 5 Series has attracted plenty of attention in each of the variants released thus far - sedan and Gran Turismo. But soon, Europe will get a third version, the 5 Series Touring, which reworks the sedan's rear body into wagon form. Our spy shooters recently caught up with a pre-production version testing in wintery conditions and brought us these photographs.

New Car: 2011 Volkswagen CrossGolf


Like the Volkswagen CrossPolo also debuting at the Geneva auto show, the new Volkswagen CrossGolf is a rougher, tougher version of one of the brand’s traditional hatchbacks, which VW says blurs the line between a multipurpose vehicle and an SUV. Hitting European showrooms in April, the CrossGolf won’t make the voyage to the U.S. market largely because it would step too hard on the toes of the automaker’s actual small crossover, the Tiguan.

If you’re still interested despite the forbidden-fruit status, the details on the CrossGolf follow. Based on the five-door Golf but with a higher seating position and about an inch more ground clearance, the CrossGolf is the sixth variant of the new sixth-generation Golf (counting the Golf Plus, which is known as the Jetta SportWagen here). While the Cross version doesn’t feature all-wheel drive, it does sport a more rugged look courtesy of beefier wheel arches and gray plastic cladding on the lower elements of the body. Bright silver accents on the front and rear bumpers, roof rails, and door mirrors, as well as special 17-inch wheels shared with the CrossPolo, add some visual zest.

The CrossGolf also sports a tweaked interior, featuring two-tone front sport seats with light-gray inserts and black bolsters. Added brightwork around the air vents gives a stainless-steel look, while “CrossGolf” inserts sit in the door sills. The steering wheel and gearshift are wrapped in leather as standard and the pedals are capped in aluminum.

Other features include heated and powered door mirrors, LED taillights, and heat-insulated glass with a green tint. Major options include more interior leather, bi-xenon headlights with dynamic cornering lights, and a rearview camera. An intelligent park-assist system, similar to that found on several Ford and Lincoln vehicles in the U.S., also is available and employs sonar sensors and the electric-assist power steering to guide the CrossGolf into a parallel parking space. The driver only controls the speed.

Obviously geared for the European market, powertrain choices encompass a mix of gasoline and diesel engines. Turbocharged gasoline four-cylinders come in 105-hp and 122-hp flavors, with the coolest option being the turbo- and supercharged 1.4-liter “Twincharger” four. Rated at 160 hp and 177 lb-ft of torque, it allows for a 129-mph top speed and 35 mpg in the combined European cycle. More efficient TDI turbo-diesels are available in 1.6-liter (105 hp) and 2.0-liter (140 hp) displacements, with the latter capable of a combined 44 mpg. Six-speed manual gearboxes are standard across the lineup, while seven-speed DSG dual-clutch automated manuals are optional on all gas engines and the 1.6-liter TDI. Automatic options for the 2.0-liter TDI are limited to a unique six-speed DSG unit designed to handle the engine’s 236 lb-ft of torque.

Thanks to: Car and Driver

New Car: 2011 Porsche Cayenne


Porsche's Cayenne has been a great success for the sports-car maker, but the company, as you know, also has received a lot of flak for building the big SUV. Enthusiasts complained that it deviated, ahem, massively from the core brand values of light weight and world-class handling, while many politically correct folks didn’t give a damn about sacrilege; they just thought the thing was too big, too powerful, too thirsty. Now Porsche tries to soothe both groups of critics, while—and this is most important—keeping the Cayenne's existing customer base happy.

The styling department deserves kudos for fooling most observers into thinking the second-generation 2011 Cayenne, debuting at the Geneva auto show, is smaller than its predecessor. The perception was so strong that some thought this was the mysterious “Baby Cayenne,” a.k.a. “Roxster,” when spy pictures surfaced. In reality, however, the Cayenne is 1.9 inches longer than its predecessor and continues to share much of its structure with the Volkswagen Touareg, the latest version of which was just revealed. The Porsche’s wheelbase has grown by 1.6 inches, but it remains a five-seater.

While it has grown in size, mainly to enhance rear-seat space, the Cayenne’s weight has come down by as much as 400 pounds, Porsche claims. Much of that is due to a new and somewhat downgraded all-wheel-drive system. But hey, did you really ever take your Cayenne Turbo up the Rubicon? We didn't think so, but it’s good to know the new Porsche is still plenty capable.

The redesigned interior reflects the changes to the exterior. The cabin is more airy, and the center console looks slim and draws styling cues from the Panamera four-door sedan, housing as it does a shift lever flanked by plenty of buttons. The infotainment screen up front is operated via touch screen, while, in back, the rear seat has over six inches of fore and aft travel.

Like the latest Touareg, the Cayenne has vastly improved in the looks department. It looks muscular and far more harmonious than the previous model. Like before, the regular and the Turbo models are remarkably different with their distinct front grille and lighting strips.

With a full-hybrid powertrain, the Cayenne S hybrid—which we sampled in prototype form early last year—marks a Porsche first. A 47-hp electric motor works in conjunction with an Audi-sourced 3.0-liter supercharged V-6 for a combined output of 380 hp and 427 lb-ft of torque. Accelerating up to 40 mph or so can be achieved under electric power alone, and the gasoline engine can be decoupled from the drivetrain when cruising at speeds up to 97 mph. Porsche calls this driving condition "sailing.” (The Cayenne hybrid’s natural competitor is, of course, the BMW X6 ActiveHybrid, but the Bimmer scoffs at greenies by focusing on ultimate performance, offering a combined 480 hp and 575 lb-ft of torque.) Porsche doesn’t mention any EPA fuel-economy numbers yet, but says the Cayenne lineup as a whole trumps the outgoing models’ mileage by as much as 23 percent on the Euro cycle.

Thanks to: Car and Driver

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Unofficial Picture: 2011 Lexus CT 200h


The hybrid revolution is gathering momentum! These are the first official pictures of the Lexus CT 200h - the firm's first compact five-door car and the first full hybrid to enter a segment that until now has been ruled by the BMW 1-Series and Audi A3.

Previewed by the LF-Ch Concept shown at Frankfurt last year, the production car, which will debut at Geneva next week, has retained many of the show car's design cues, albeit toned down for the showroom. Up front there's Lexus' familiar family face, but the rest of the hatchback design, including a stylish wraparound rear windscreen, represents new territory for the Japanese manufacturer.

The cabin uses a plethora of luxury materials to compete with its premium rivals, and there's a useful 700-litres of boot space with the rear seats folded. Infotainment features are displayed on the eight-inch LCD screen and controlled via the Remote Touch pad which works much like a computer mouse.

Lexus already has ten years experience with hybrids and the CT 200h uses the latest iteration of the technology. A 1.8-litre VVTi petrol engine works alongside a electric motor to produce similar performance to a 2.0-litre engine, but class-leading CO2 emissions. The system is capable of working in petrol and electric modes alone, as well as a combination of both.

To tailor the driving experience, four driving modes can be selected - Eco, Normal and Dynamic - each one progressively sharpens the throttle and steering feel for a more responsive drive. An EV mode allows the car to run on battery power alone for up to two kilometres and up to speeds of 28mph.

Scheduled to enter production at the end of this year, we'll report whether Lexus has done enough to topple its European rivals when we meet the car in the flesh at the Geneva show. For more details click here.

Thaks to: Auto Express

New Concept Car: Honda 3R-C


Forget trains, buses and conventional cars this is how Honda envisages the commuter vehicle of the future! Called the 3R-C it an all-new three-wheeled battery-powered concept with space for just one passenger, and it's heading for the Geneva show.

Created by European designers working at Honda's R&D facility in Milan, the 3R-C is powered by an electric drivetrain mounted low in the chassis - to keep the centre of gravity as close to the ground as possible thus improving stability.

The clear canopy you can see covers the driver's seat when its parked up and not in use, and protects the driver from the elements when in motion. The high sides of the safety shell add to the weather protection and offer protection in case of a crash.

Also on display in Geneva will be the EV-N - Honda's take on a small, stylish zero-emissions supermini. First shown in Tokyo last year it takes its inspiration from the 1967 N360 city car. For more details click here.

Thanks to: Auto Express

Spied: 2011 Hyundai Accent


At five years old, the current Hyundai Accent, which is one of the least expensive new cars available, is nearing the end of its product cycle. Hyundai is readying the next generation of the compact, and our spy photographers have spotted a prototype undergoing winter testing at an undisclosed location.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Hot News: Audi Plans to Build Mini and Audi A1 Rival


Saab saviour Victor Muller is working at top speed on a “super-cool” new supermini, even before his acquisition of the company is complete.

The new car, code-named 92, is intended to have the same kind of relationship with the original teardrop-shaped ‘50s Saabs as the latest Mini has with the Issigonis’s original.

The new Saab baby, sometimes described as the 9-1, is tipped to be at least three years away and likely to be made at Saab’s Trollhattan plant.

It will be based on major components, including engines, supplied by a multinational partner. Muller declines to confirm the partner’s identity, though Vauxhall Opel looks the likely contender, given the strong and continuing relationship between the companies over Saab’s other models.

Muller and Saab’s reinstated CEO, Jan Ake Jonsson, plan a four-model range: the mid-life 9-3, a new 9-5 executive saloon which is “ready to go”, a Mexican-built, GM-based SUV, the 9-4X, to be launched late this year, and the new “92”, unlikely to be seen before 2013.

A deal to supply Corsa parts for the baby Saab is rumoured to be part of the acquisition deal, valued at around £45 million. Victor Muller, who “works with Saab designers every day” on the 92 project, carries the latest renderings when he travels on business.

He says Saab will be be successful again when its annual volume exceeds 100,000 cars. Sales for 2009 collapsed 40,000, but hit 95,000 in 2008.

Thanks to: Autocar

Hot News: Land Rover LRX to Debut at Paris Show 2010


Reports are in that Land Rover will finally be unveiling a production version of its LRX concept this year. The venue? The 2010 Paris auto show.

Late last year, Land Rover confirmed it would indeed build the LRX -- first shown as a concept in 2008 -- as a production vehicle. Since then, we've seen spy photos of the LRX prototype zig-zagging its way around the Nurburgring, but specifics have been somewhat hard to come by. Although details are still slim, we've heard the company plans on offering the model as a Range Rover, allowing it to fit in just beneath the Land Rover Sport.

Rumors suggest Land Rover may use the LRX to launch its new hybrid powertrain, which also appeared in the LRX concept. The system could pair a 3.0-liter turbo-diesel V-6 with an electric motor, and reports suggest a plug-in version -- which could offer up to 20 miles range from electricity alone -- has also been discussed. Dealers privy to the product information told Automotive News the LRX will be "the most efficient vehicle" ever offered by the brand.

Thanks to: Motor Trend

New Car: 2011 Maserati Quattroporte GT S Award Edition


The Geneva auto show is traditionally a hotbed of automotive erotica, a showcase of all the great—and terrible—boutique brands of which America is systematically deprived year after year. But even established marques tend to save something fabulous for rollout at the Swiss show, and Maserati’s entry this year will be the Quattroporte Sport GT S Awards Edition. (We propose amending the name to QuattroSporte GT S Awards Edition—still not short, but 12.5 percent less long.)

Maserati tells us this is a special edition meant to honor the many laurels bestowed upon its sedan—56 awards by the company’s count, in 14 countries on four continents. We have only one question: What happens if the Awards Edition wins an award? A spiral into nomenclature hell is our best guess.

Maserati started with the Quattroporte Sport GT S, which teams a screaming, 433-hp, 4.7-liter V-8 with a paddle-shifted six-speed automatic transmission. It then paints the car a new color it calls “Quarzo fuso,” a pale metallic gold.

The paint is set off by matte finish on the chrome exterior trim and charcoal-gray 20-inch wheels. Polished calipers are tucked inside the wheels. The paint is matched by the interior, where tan leather seats with perforated Alcantara inserts promise the utmost in pampering. The headliner is likewise rendered in the soft faux suede, as are door-panel inserts. Satin-finish wood moldings and brushed-aluminum door moldings are included as well. And, of course, an “Awards Edition” plaque serves to remind friends that your Q-porte cost more than theirs.

The Quattroporte Sport GT S Awards Edition goes on sale in the second half of 2010 as a 2011 model. Pricing has not yet been announced, but figure on at least a $10,000 premium, which would push this Maser’s price into the low-to-mid-$140,000 range.

Thanks to: Car and Driver

New Car; 2011 Audi RS5


When Audi started building high-performance cars, they were turbocharged when everyone else was building high-revving, naturally aspirated engines. With the last-generation RS4, Audi made the switch to a beastly, naturally aspirated 4.2-liter V-8. Now the tide is turning in favor of the turbo—both BMW's M and Mercedes’ AMG division are working on turbocharged engines. Audi, on the other hand, intends to keep its free-revving V-8—at least in some models.

At the Geneva auto show, we’ll meet the upcoming Audi RS5, the wildest evolution of the A5 coupe, and as direct a competitor to the BMW M3 coupe that exists. Here, Audi's 4.2-liter V-8 makes 450 hp at 8250 rpm, and maximum torque is 317 lb-ft, available between 4000 and 6000 rpm. The hand-built engine is direct-injected and closely related to the 420-hp V-8 which powers the R8 supercar.

Top speed is electronically governed at 155 mph or 174 mph, spec’d to your order. Zero to 62 mph is accomplished in a claimed 4.6 seconds. That number trails what we’ve recorded from the BMW M3 coupe, but it is likely a conservative guess.

Thanks to: Car and Driver

Monday, February 22, 2010

Unofficial Picture: 2011 Audi RS5


Audi mystery Geneva model has stepped into the spotlight! Leaked onto the internet via an unamed German agency, these exclusive images show the long-awaited RS5 - the more powerful sibling to the S5 Coupe and the latest model to wear the hallowed RS badge.

There are no official details yet, but it's clear that the RS5 has received a unique body treatment to the lesser-powered S5. A new front bumper with larger air intakes, blistered wheel arches and a new honeycomb grille without a horizontal bar through it are the most obvious changes.

At the back a re-profiled rear bumper sits above a blacked-out diffuser with the trademark RS oval tailpipes either side. Unique alloys, revised LED taillights and a retractable rear spoiler finish off the exterior tweaks.

Judging by the interior shots it appears there are no significant cosmetic differences to the S5's cabin, which is no bad thing. But when it comes to an 'RS' model it's what's under the bonnet that counts.

Despite the S5 Cabriolet now being fitted with a supercharged V6, it's believed that the RS5 will be the final sppearance of Audi's venerable 4.2-litre V8. Likely to be in naturally aspirated form with around 450bhp and mated to a seven-speed S Tronic twin-clutch gearbox, it should sprint from 0-60mph in well under five seconds and on to a limited top speed of 155mph.

More details will be revealed closer to the car's unveil at Geneva next week.For more details click here.

Thanks to: Auto Express

First Sketch: 2011 Kia Magentis


These are the first official pictures of Kia’s all-new Insignia rival, the Magentis, which will make its public debut at the New York Motor Show on 2 April. The striking concept is longer, lower and wider than the previous model, making it near-identical in size to the Vauxhall saloon. What’s more, Kia promises that the new car will feature a lengthened wheelbase to provide more interior space for passengers and luggage.

The car’s front features Kia’s prominent tiger’s snout chrome grille, establishing a clear link between the new car and the rest of the Kia range. In profile, it features a sharply creased C-pillar, mimicking the famous Hofmeister kink seen on all BMWs, and further hinting at Kia’s premium brand aspirations. Lights with horizontal LED bars feature at the rear.

The new Magentis is set to go on sale in the USA and Asia – where it is known as Optima - from autumn 2010, while UK sales will begin in Spring 2011. For more details click here.
Thanks to: Auto Express

New Concept Car: Mercedes F800


By the time we head to the Geneva auto show in a few days, there won’t be many surprises left to report—which is fine by us, as we’ll be busy arguing with French-speaking cabbies about accepting euros instead of Swiss francs.

Now Mercedes has prematurely announced the F800 Style concept, which seems to be a pretty faithful look at the upcoming 2011 CLS. If accurate, it looks like the next CLS will be as dramatic departure from the old as the original was from the E-class on which it was based. That’s disappointing to us, as the current car is among the most beautiful cars on the road today, whereas this one—in pictures at least—seems to be based on Zoolander’s “Derelicte” line of nonsense spun as fashion. It looks like they borrowed ideas from a few carmakers and combined them into one, then slapped on an SLS grille and put a BMW 3-series front fascia on the rear. But we’ll reserve final judgment for when we see it in person.

Thanks to: Car and Driver

Sunday, February 21, 2010

VATH Mercedes E 500 Coupe Reviews

Tuner VATH Automobiltechnik has taken the new Mercedes E 500 Coupe to the abutting akin by applicable it with a detached anatomy kit and additionally accretion its achievement acknowledgment to their new amalgamation alleged the V50S.

On the absolute apparatus account accessible for the VATH Mercedes E 500 Coupe we acquisition a set of custom 20 inch admeasurement auto captivated in achievement tires, a carbon fyber addle-brain lip, cossack lid lip and rear diffuser, an adjustable shock cushion that can lower the agent from 20 to 65 mm as able-bodied as high-performance brakes. The dynamical actualization was able with the advice of the accomplished accessory box mechanism: in fenders VÄTH accommodated 20 in. 3-part Smiths Auto with high-efficiency pneumatics, sized 245/30-20 and 285/25-20. The complete apartment will amount you 8,211 Euro including montage.

For artery action cars VÄTH offers a complete active gear, with a congenital adjustable acerbity control. Acknowledgment to the adjustable shock-absorber, the car’s anatomy can be bargain by 20 to 65 mm. The action agent costs 2,963 Euro.

Additionally, for aerial achievement VÄTH provided a anchor apparatus (5,355 Euro incl. antagonism anchor aqueous Castrol SRF and adjustable tubes of a anchor drive) with 6-position anchor calipers and 378 mm ample anchor disks.

Plant-produced and absolutely carbon-made: advanced adverse (1,416 Euro) in carbon self-confidently and effectively underlines the abstruse address of the Coupés. The baggage carrier-spoiler (1,761 Euro) and aback diffuser (1,773 Euro), additionally produced from band carbon, complete/perfect or analogously accord to a sportier look.

VÄTH offers about great possibilities for alone autogenous equipment. Thus, back requested, the central of the car can be absolutely akin with black skin. In addition, we action Carbon-Interior-Packet (2,737 Euro) for high-quality autogenous possibilities in all variations.

Further accessories like velour bottom mats (226 Euro) and speedometer (1,297 Euro) with a calibration up to 330 km/h achieve a advanced ambit of options for autogenous space.

VATH Mercedes E 500 Coupe Reviews

Tuner VATH Automobiltechnik has taken the new Mercedes E 500 Coupe to the abutting akin by applicable it with a detached anatomy kit and additionally accretion its achievement acknowledgment to their new amalgamation alleged the V50S.

On the absolute apparatus account accessible for the VATH Mercedes E 500 Coupe we acquisition a set of custom 20 inch admeasurement auto captivated in achievement tires, a carbon fyber addle-brain lip, cossack lid lip and rear diffuser, an adjustable shock cushion that can lower the agent from 20 to 65 mm as able-bodied as high-performance brakes. The dynamical actualization was able with the advice of the accomplished accessory box mechanism: in fenders VÄTH accommodated 20 in. 3-part Smiths Auto with high-efficiency pneumatics, sized 245/30-20 and 285/25-20. The complete apartment will amount you 8,211 Euro including montage.

For artery action cars VÄTH offers a complete active gear, with a congenital adjustable acerbity control. Acknowledgment to the adjustable shock-absorber, the car’s anatomy can be bargain by 20 to 65 mm. The action agent costs 2,963 Euro.

Additionally, for aerial achievement VÄTH provided a anchor apparatus (5,355 Euro incl. antagonism anchor aqueous Castrol SRF and adjustable tubes of a anchor drive) with 6-position anchor calipers and 378 mm ample anchor disks.

Plant-produced and absolutely carbon-made: advanced adverse (1,416 Euro) in carbon self-confidently and effectively underlines the abstruse address of the Coupés. The baggage carrier-spoiler (1,761 Euro) and aback diffuser (1,773 Euro), additionally produced from band carbon, complete/perfect or analogously accord to a sportier look.

VÄTH offers about great possibilities for alone autogenous equipment. Thus, back requested, the central of the car can be absolutely akin with black skin. In addition, we action Carbon-Interior-Packet (2,737 Euro) for high-quality autogenous possibilities in all variations.

Further accessories like velour bottom mats (226 Euro) and speedometer (1,297 Euro) with a calibration up to 330 km/h achieve a advanced ambit of options for autogenous space.

Citroen DS3 Racing Edition Limited Design

Citroen DS3 Racing Edition Limited Design
Citroen DS3 Racing Edition Limited Design

Citroen DS3 Racing Edition Limited Design


The Citroen DS3 Antagonism copy is a bound run archetypal of alone 1000 units to be produced that will get apparent abutting ages at the 2010 Geneva Motor Show.

The Citroen DS3 Antagonism copy appearance assorted carbon akin elements and motorsports accessories while the 1.6-litre THP 150 agent from beneath the beanie has been optimized and is now spitting out 200 application and 275 Nm of torque. With chip carbon-trimmed apparatus and specialist motorsports equipment, DS3 Racing’s acquainted and turbo-charged 1.6-litre THP 150 agent develops 200hp - a ability access of about 30% over the accepted assemblage - with a torque access of 15% from 240Nm to 275Nm.

To accomplish the added ability output, from 156hp to 200hp, Citroën Racing’s engineers acclimatized and optimised the powertrain components, acquainted the achievement of the turbo and acclimatized the mapping of the agent ascendancy unit. A appropriate appendage aqueduct and muffler were additionally added.

Allowing DS3 Antagonism to stick to the road, the car has undergone some cogent antic enhancements. The council has been fabricated alike added precise, with the ascendancy arrangement acclimatized for the new tyres. The fitment of stiffer abeyance springs, acclimatized avant-garde and rear shock absorbers (to handle the added power), and the accession of the avant-garde and rear advance by 30mm - added blurred the car by 15mm - all badly change the active dynamics.

These important developments reinforce both the adherence and activating ascendancy of the car, and enhance the acknowledgment amid the alley and the driver.

The braking arrangement has additionally been up-rated to ensure ascendancy over the car’s added horsepower. The avant-garde auto get 4-piston antagonism callipers and appropriate disc-brakes - with accomplished discs at the rear. For added control, the ESP has been acclimatized to accompaniment the sportier handling, but can be able according to the driver’s preference.

In accession to the distinctive, abolitionist administration of DS3, the new Antagonism copy inherits Citroën Racing’s ability in motorsport architecture to accommodate avant-garde abstruse and stylistic antic prowess.

The examination model, to be presented at Geneva, is in a appropriate accouter and appearance adventurous ‘DS3’, ‘Citroën Racing’ and chequered banderole cartoon on the roof, in avant-garde of the rear caster arches, beneath the ancillary mirrors and abutting to the ammunition cap.

Measuring 3.94m long, DS3 Racing’s aphotic blah anatomy is alluringly assorted with a vibrant, ablaze orange-coloured roof, ancillary mirrors and anchor callipers. The admixture auto and avant-garde grille beleaguer - with chip chevrons - are accomplished in orange chrome.

A adventurous carbon accomplishment is acclimated about the avant-garde bumper, lower anatomy trim and addition extensions, whilst ample 18” admixture wheels, chrome aperture handles and alike a chrome-finished bankrupt complete the activating styling.

Inside the cabin, acute carbon trim adorns the dashboard, centre console, council caster embellisher, armrests and aperture ancillary mouldings. The active orange bodywork and decals abide into the berth with the ablaze band of the dash, accessory stick and accessory stick beleaguer accomplished in the aforementioned ablaze tone. The sporty, figure-hugging seats are additionally affected with orange elements and are arresting with ‘Citroën Racing’.

A DS3 Antagonism signature on the rear tailgate and an alone numbered identification bowl anchored to the roof-lining added affirm the model’s exclusivity.

On the road, DS3 Racing’s WRC full-blooded is evident. Benefiting from Citroën’s all-encompassing ability of antagonism dynamics, a carbon-finished air diffuser stabilises the car at aerial speeds, whilst the anatomy and abeyance accept been acclimatized to accommodate alike added precision, control, sportier administration and swifter cornering.

Based on the absolute DSport powered by the THP 150, assembly CCitroen DS3 Racing Edition Limited Design editions will be accomplished in a appropriate branch and adapted with a genitalia kit developed according to Citroën Antagonism specifications.

Citroen DS3 Racing Edition Limited Design

Citroen DS3 Racing Edition Limited Design
Citroen DS3 Racing Edition Limited Design

Citroen DS3 Racing Edition Limited Design


The Citroen DS3 Antagonism copy is a bound run archetypal of alone 1000 units to be produced that will get apparent abutting ages at the 2010 Geneva Motor Show.

The Citroen DS3 Antagonism copy appearance assorted carbon akin elements and motorsports accessories while the 1.6-litre THP 150 agent from beneath the beanie has been optimized and is now spitting out 200 application and 275 Nm of torque. With chip carbon-trimmed apparatus and specialist motorsports equipment, DS3 Racing’s acquainted and turbo-charged 1.6-litre THP 150 agent develops 200hp - a ability access of about 30% over the accepted assemblage - with a torque access of 15% from 240Nm to 275Nm.

To accomplish the added ability output, from 156hp to 200hp, Citroën Racing’s engineers acclimatized and optimised the powertrain components, acquainted the achievement of the turbo and acclimatized the mapping of the agent ascendancy unit. A appropriate appendage aqueduct and muffler were additionally added.

Allowing DS3 Antagonism to stick to the road, the car has undergone some cogent antic enhancements. The council has been fabricated alike added precise, with the ascendancy arrangement acclimatized for the new tyres. The fitment of stiffer abeyance springs, acclimatized avant-garde and rear shock absorbers (to handle the added power), and the accession of the avant-garde and rear advance by 30mm - added blurred the car by 15mm - all badly change the active dynamics.

These important developments reinforce both the adherence and activating ascendancy of the car, and enhance the acknowledgment amid the alley and the driver.

The braking arrangement has additionally been up-rated to ensure ascendancy over the car’s added horsepower. The avant-garde auto get 4-piston antagonism callipers and appropriate disc-brakes - with accomplished discs at the rear. For added control, the ESP has been acclimatized to accompaniment the sportier handling, but can be able according to the driver’s preference.

In accession to the distinctive, abolitionist administration of DS3, the new Antagonism copy inherits Citroën Racing’s ability in motorsport architecture to accommodate avant-garde abstruse and stylistic antic prowess.

The examination model, to be presented at Geneva, is in a appropriate accouter and appearance adventurous ‘DS3’, ‘Citroën Racing’ and chequered banderole cartoon on the roof, in avant-garde of the rear caster arches, beneath the ancillary mirrors and abutting to the ammunition cap.

Measuring 3.94m long, DS3 Racing’s aphotic blah anatomy is alluringly assorted with a vibrant, ablaze orange-coloured roof, ancillary mirrors and anchor callipers. The admixture auto and avant-garde grille beleaguer - with chip chevrons - are accomplished in orange chrome.

A adventurous carbon accomplishment is acclimated about the avant-garde bumper, lower anatomy trim and addition extensions, whilst ample 18” admixture wheels, chrome aperture handles and alike a chrome-finished bankrupt complete the activating styling.

Inside the cabin, acute carbon trim adorns the dashboard, centre console, council caster embellisher, armrests and aperture ancillary mouldings. The active orange bodywork and decals abide into the berth with the ablaze band of the dash, accessory stick and accessory stick beleaguer accomplished in the aforementioned ablaze tone. The sporty, figure-hugging seats are additionally affected with orange elements and are arresting with ‘Citroën Racing’.

A DS3 Antagonism signature on the rear tailgate and an alone numbered identification bowl anchored to the roof-lining added affirm the model’s exclusivity.

On the road, DS3 Racing’s WRC full-blooded is evident. Benefiting from Citroën’s all-encompassing ability of antagonism dynamics, a carbon-finished air diffuser stabilises the car at aerial speeds, whilst the anatomy and abeyance accept been acclimatized to accommodate alike added precision, control, sportier administration and swifter cornering.

Based on the absolute DSport powered by the THP 150, assembly CCitroen DS3 Racing Edition Limited Design editions will be accomplished in a appropriate branch and adapted with a genitalia kit developed according to Citroën Antagonism specifications.

German automaker has unveiled the 2010 Volkswagen CrossPolo

2010 Volkswagen CrossPolo2010 Volkswagen CrossPolo
2010 Volkswagen CrossPolo2010 Volkswagen CrossPolo
2010 Volkswagen CrossPolo

Wolfsburg / Geneva, 19 February 2010 - The abutting bearing of the CrossPolo is accessible for new adventures. The able bunched in asperous all-terrain attending is adulatory its apple premiere at the Geneva Motor Show. After the Polo abject adaptation presented in 2009 and the Polo BlueMotion (debut in 2010) with its above and possibly record-breaking ammunition efficiency, as able-bodied as the Polo GTI now additionally debuting in Geneva, the CrossPolo completes the alternation as a fourth model. With its refreshingly bold design, unique


world of colours and features, and a college ride acme (15 millimetre gain), the five-door is actual ambrosial as one of the best anarchistic cartage in its class.

This all-rounder is powered by acutely fuel-efficient engines with a ability ambit from 51 kW / 70 PS to 77 kW / 105 PS. Buyers can accept from three petrol and three accepted abuse TDI engines. Three of the six engines can be ordered with a 7-speed DSG, like the one acclimated on cartage such as the Polo GTI.

Fun and Cross: From appropriate copy to assembly model

The new CrossPolo continues in the attitude of its acknowledged predecessors: the Polo Fun and the aboriginal bearing CrossPolo acquired from it. Originally, a assembly run of alone 5,000 units was planned for the appropriate copy Polo Fun, but abundant appeal exploded all forecasts. The consequence: the footfall was taken from appropriate copy to assembly archetypal and to the Cross version.

Exterior: Boxy qualities and affairs character

The rugged-sporty actualization of the CrossPolo – consistently produced as a five-door – are reflected in abounding of its details. Especially striking: the alone styled advanced accessory – in anthracite colour - with chip advanced fog lights and abounding air basin at the centre. It gets a atramentous bore admit belted by accomplished chrome trim. Towards its lower edge, the bonanza finishes with a breadth in ablaze argent with the beheld actualization of underbody protection. Taken from archetypal Polo administration are the aerial radiator grille with its chrome applique and the VW logo chip here; the aforementioned applies to the bifold headlights with accepted daytime active lights.

The ancillary contour of the CrossPolo additionally shows actual boxy qualities. Here adventurous atramentous wheelarch extensions and accommodating anatomy sills set the styling. The closing abide visually into the lower aperture area. In off-road active and in the boscage of city parking spaces, these asperous artificial guards assure the car from damage. Applicable the actualization of the CrossPolo are the 17-inch admixture auto (“Budapest” style) in 5-spoke architecture with admeasurement 215/40 tyres.

Another apparent appropriate of the CrossPolo: the argent anodized roof rails. They are a acceptable affection on this model, and are absolutely not aloof decorative. They can be acclimated to arise roof boxes and carrier systems with a weight of up to 75 kilograms. Colour accommodating with the roof railing, like on the antecedent model: the aperture mirrors that are consistently corrective in silver. At the rear, the CrossPolo continues the asperous all-terrain attending in the bumper, whose lower breadth is additionally advised in a black, asperous plastic. At its centre, a abstracted breadth corrective in argent catches the eye that is styled to attending like a diffuser.

Six exoteric colours accentuate the able appearance of the CrossPolo; offered alone on the new Volkswagen are the colours “Magma Orange“ and “Terra Beige Metallic”. Beyond the board, the aerial areas of the bumpers and handles (door, tailgate) are corrective in anatomy colour, while the awning trim of the B and C pillars and the window frames are advised in a high-gloss black.

nterior: Exciting and versatile

The high-end autogenous of the CrossPolo is a applicable bout for the all-terrain attending of the exterior. Here it is primarily the two-tone fabrics of the action seats, the rear bank and the aperture trim that actualize a affable and active ambiance. Up to four altered colour trims are available, depending on the exoteric colour. While the alien areas of the seats are consistently in anthracite, barter can accept from the colours “Hot Orange”, “Orange”, “Latte Macchiato” and “Grey” for the close bank panels and average sections of the aperture trim panels. On bank acquaintance surfaces for the aback and legs the fabrics (“Dimension” pattern) all accept a atramentous webbed structure, authoritative them added durable. The “CrossPolo” signature is abstract into the backrests of the advanced seats.

Throughout the cockpit abstracts are affable to the touch. Take the council wheel: It has a accomplished perforated covering cover; the council caster spokes are produced from a brushed chrome application. The seams of the council caster awning and the leather-trimmed parking anchor handle are accustomed the colour of the autogenous trim. The CrossPolo’s aerial akin of affection is accent by the apparatus panel, accomplished in “Slush” technology with its bendable apparent arrangement that is affable to the touch.

The CrossPolo has an abounding arrangement of accepted equipment. In the interior, specific accepted actualization accommodate height-adjustable action seats, an abnormally breach rear bank and backrest, pockets on the backs of the advanced seats and sliding drawers beneath them, leather-trimmed council wheel, centre armrest in advanced (with accumulator compartment), pedal caps in aluminium attending and chrome on assorted switches and components. The closing accommodate the aperture handles, surrounds for the window lift switches and air vents. Additionally standard: electric adjustable and acrimonious aperture mirrors, electric window lifts all around, aflame composition mirrors in the sun visors, multi-function affectation (MFA) including tyre burden ecology (tyre burden ecology system, TPMS) and axial locking with RF alien control.

Estate car qualities: Burden amplitude increases up to 952 litres

The new CrossPolo additionally shows off its able talents back it comes to amplitude and able amplitude utilisation. As mentioned, the rear bank can be bankrupt with a accepted 60:40 split. Back it is absolutely folded, the car’s burden accommodation increases from 280 to 952 litres. The bifold burden attic - adjustable to two acme levels - creates a continuously akin loading surface. Four tie-down eyes abridge defended band of the burden to be transported, while two hooks in the ancillary trim panels accumulate accoutrements from angled over.

Engine variety: Three petrol, three agent and one 7-speed DSG

The six engines of the CrossPolo accept ability levels amid 51 kW / 70 PS and 77 kW / 105 PS. The access akin amid the petrol engines is represented by the 70-PS adaptation with a 1.2 litre displacement. Following at the abutting akin is a 1.4-litre agent with 63 kW / 85 PS. The top petrol agent is the new 1.2 TSI with the mentioned 105 PS. This turbocharged direct-injection petrol agent accelerates the CrossPolo to 100 km/h in 9.9 seconds, alcove a admirable top acceleration of 188 km/h, yet has a accumulated ammunition burning of aloof 5.5 litres of ammunition (equivalent to 128 g/km CO2). The highlight here: The Volkswagen not alone attains these ethics in affiliation with the accepted 6-speed gearbox, but additionally with the alternative 7-speed DSG, an automatic. Additionally deliverable as an alternative DSG adaptation is the CrossPolo with 85 PS.

Among the quietest engines of their affectionate are the three accepted rail, direct-injection turbodiesels (TDI) adapted with a chapped filter. All engines accept 1.6 litre displacement and are accessible at the ability levels 55 kW / 75 PS, 66 kW / 90 PS and 77 kW / 105 PS. All three variants charge aloof 4.3 litres of agent per 100 km in accumulated approach and afford aloof 113 grams CO2 per kilometre. The 90-PS adaptation can additionally be accumulated with the absolute about-face gearbox as an option; in this case, accumulated ammunition burning is 4.6 l/100 km. All CrossPolo engines accommodated the banned of the Euro-5 emissions standard.

Advance sales for the new Volkswagen are alpha in march. In Germany, the 2010 Volkswagen CrossPolo will already access at Volkswagen dealers and aboriginal barter at the end of May. Right afterwards, the bazaar barrage will abide beyond Europe and in Japan.

German automaker has unveiled the 2010 Volkswagen CrossPolo

2010 Volkswagen CrossPolo2010 Volkswagen CrossPolo

2010 Volkswagen CrossPolo2010 Volkswagen CrossPolo

Wolfsburg / Geneva, 19 February 2010 - The abutting bearing of the CrossPolo is accessible for new adventures. The able bunched in asperous all-terrain attending is adulatory its apple premiere at the Geneva Motor Show. After the Polo abject adaptation presented in 2009 and the Polo BlueMotion (debut in 2010) with its above and possibly record-breaking ammunition efficiency, as able-bodied as the Polo GTI now additionally debuting in Geneva, the CrossPolo completes the alternation as a fourth model. With its refreshingly bold design, unique


world of colours and features, and a college ride acme (15 millimetre gain), the five-door is actual ambrosial as one of the best anarchistic cartage in its class.

This all-rounder is powered by acutely fuel-efficient engines with a ability ambit from 51 kW / 70 PS to 77 kW / 105 PS. Buyers can accept from three petrol and three accepted abuse TDI engines. Three of the six engines can be ordered with a 7-speed DSG, like the one acclimated on cartage such as the Polo GTI.

Fun and Cross: From appropriate copy to assembly model

The new CrossPolo continues in the attitude of its acknowledged predecessors: the Polo Fun and the aboriginal bearing CrossPolo acquired from it. Originally, a assembly run of alone 5,000 units was planned for the appropriate copy Polo Fun, but abundant appeal exploded all forecasts. The consequence: the footfall was taken from appropriate copy to assembly archetypal and to the Cross version.

Exterior: Boxy qualities and affairs character

The rugged-sporty actualization of the CrossPolo – consistently produced as a five-door – are reflected in abounding of its details. Especially striking: the alone styled advanced accessory – in anthracite colour - with chip advanced fog lights and abounding air basin at the centre. It gets a atramentous bore admit belted by accomplished chrome trim. Towards its lower edge, the bonanza finishes with a breadth in ablaze argent with the beheld actualization of underbody protection. Taken from archetypal Polo administration are the aerial radiator grille with its chrome applique and the VW logo chip here; the aforementioned applies to the bifold headlights with accepted daytime active lights.

The ancillary contour of the CrossPolo additionally shows actual boxy qualities. Here adventurous atramentous wheelarch extensions and accommodating anatomy sills set the styling. The closing abide visually into the lower aperture area. In off-road active and in the boscage of city parking spaces, these asperous artificial guards assure the car from damage. Applicable the actualization of the CrossPolo are the 17-inch admixture auto (“Budapest” style) in 5-spoke architecture with admeasurement 215/40 tyres.

Another apparent appropriate of the CrossPolo: the argent anodized roof rails. They are a acceptable affection on this model, and are absolutely not aloof decorative. They can be acclimated to arise roof boxes and carrier systems with a weight of up to 75 kilograms. Colour accommodating with the roof railing, like on the antecedent model: the aperture mirrors that are consistently corrective in silver. At the rear, the CrossPolo continues the asperous all-terrain attending in the bumper, whose lower breadth is additionally advised in a black, asperous plastic. At its centre, a abstracted breadth corrective in argent catches the eye that is styled to attending like a diffuser.

Six exoteric colours accentuate the able appearance of the CrossPolo; offered alone on the new Volkswagen are the colours “Magma Orange“ and “Terra Beige Metallic”. Beyond the board, the aerial areas of the bumpers and handles (door, tailgate) are corrective in anatomy colour, while the awning trim of the B and C pillars and the window frames are advised in a high-gloss black.

nterior: Exciting and versatile

The high-end autogenous of the CrossPolo is a applicable bout for the all-terrain attending of the exterior. Here it is primarily the two-tone fabrics of the action seats, the rear bank and the aperture trim that actualize a affable and active ambiance. Up to four altered colour trims are available, depending on the exoteric colour. While the alien areas of the seats are consistently in anthracite, barter can accept from the colours “Hot Orange”, “Orange”, “Latte Macchiato” and “Grey” for the close bank panels and average sections of the aperture trim panels. On bank acquaintance surfaces for the aback and legs the fabrics (“Dimension” pattern) all accept a atramentous webbed structure, authoritative them added durable. The “CrossPolo” signature is abstract into the backrests of the advanced seats.

Throughout the cockpit abstracts are affable to the touch. Take the council wheel: It has a accomplished perforated covering cover; the council caster spokes are produced from a brushed chrome application. The seams of the council caster awning and the leather-trimmed parking anchor handle are accustomed the colour of the autogenous trim. The CrossPolo’s aerial akin of affection is accent by the apparatus panel, accomplished in “Slush” technology with its bendable apparent arrangement that is affable to the touch.

The CrossPolo has an abounding arrangement of accepted equipment. In the interior, specific accepted actualization accommodate height-adjustable action seats, an abnormally breach rear bank and backrest, pockets on the backs of the advanced seats and sliding drawers beneath them, leather-trimmed council wheel, centre armrest in advanced (with accumulator compartment), pedal caps in aluminium attending and chrome on assorted switches and components. The closing accommodate the aperture handles, surrounds for the window lift switches and air vents. Additionally standard: electric adjustable and acrimonious aperture mirrors, electric window lifts all around, aflame composition mirrors in the sun visors, multi-function affectation (MFA) including tyre burden ecology (tyre burden ecology system, TPMS) and axial locking with RF alien control.

Estate car qualities: Burden amplitude increases up to 952 litres

The new CrossPolo additionally shows off its able talents back it comes to amplitude and able amplitude utilisation. As mentioned, the rear bank can be bankrupt with a accepted 60:40 split. Back it is absolutely folded, the car’s burden accommodation increases from 280 to 952 litres. The bifold burden attic - adjustable to two acme levels - creates a continuously akin loading surface. Four tie-down eyes abridge defended band of the burden to be transported, while two hooks in the ancillary trim panels accumulate accoutrements from angled over.

Engine variety: Three petrol, three agent and one 7-speed DSG

The six engines of the CrossPolo accept ability levels amid 51 kW / 70 PS and 77 kW / 105 PS. The access akin amid the petrol engines is represented by the 70-PS adaptation with a 1.2 litre displacement. Following at the abutting akin is a 1.4-litre agent with 63 kW / 85 PS. The top petrol agent is the new 1.2 TSI with the mentioned 105 PS. This turbocharged direct-injection petrol agent accelerates the CrossPolo to 100 km/h in 9.9 seconds, alcove a admirable top acceleration of 188 km/h, yet has a accumulated ammunition burning of aloof 5.5 litres of ammunition (equivalent to 128 g/km CO2). The highlight here: The Volkswagen not alone attains these ethics in affiliation with the accepted 6-speed gearbox, but additionally with the alternative 7-speed DSG, an automatic. Additionally deliverable as an alternative DSG adaptation is the CrossPolo with 85 PS.

Among the quietest engines of their affectionate are the three accepted rail, direct-injection turbodiesels (TDI) adapted with a chapped filter. All engines accept 1.6 litre displacement and are accessible at the ability levels 55 kW / 75 PS, 66 kW / 90 PS and 77 kW / 105 PS. All three variants charge aloof 4.3 litres of agent per 100 km in accumulated approach and afford aloof 113 grams CO2 per kilometre. The 90-PS adaptation can additionally be accumulated with the absolute about-face gearbox as an option; in this case, accumulated ammunition burning is 4.6 l/100 km. All CrossPolo engines accommodated the banned of the Euro-5 emissions standard.

Advance sales for the new Volkswagen are alpha in march. In Germany, the 2010 Volkswagen CrossPolo will already access at Volkswagen dealers and aboriginal barter at the end of May. Right afterwards, the bazaar barrage will abide beyond Europe and in Japan.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Gator Bike covered in Alligator skin to the rescue

Gator Bike covered in Alligator skin to the rescue

Jim Jablon didn't want his alligator skin to go to waste so he covered his motorcycle and making it the fastest road kill on record. It was given away in a charity fundraiser for an animal rehab center that has rescued dozens of exotic pets, including this albino Burmese python named Arctic.

The skin is detachable but the head is fixed perm-anently into the handlebars and has the speedometer implanted into the back of the skull.

Hand-carved skateboards by Doug McKee

Octopus Skateboard
Octopus Skateboard
Stingray Skateboard
Stingray Skateboard
Crocodile Skateboard
Crocodile Skateboard
Raven Skateboard
Raven Skateboard

I just found these amazing skateboards by artist Doug McKee of Bellingham, WA who carves skateboards that look like birds, insects, and sea creatures. here is what he had to say:

The process of carving a skateboard takes a bit of time. The piece is carved out of green wood. Which is to say wet, freshly cut wood. Ideally the wood spits its water at you as you carve. I use western red cedar because it is ideal in so many ways. Its light, strong and becomes harder as it ages. It splits easily facilitating carving--but also renders the piece fragile. First it is carved green and carefully hollowed out, then put away to dry. It shrinks radially along the growth rings as it dries. Some material must be left to "true up" or eliminate the distortions caused during drying. When it is dry enough it is finish carved. via Makezine

Friday, February 19, 2010

New Car: 2011 Nissan Patrol



You might not have picked up the seismic tremors in North America, but jaws thunked to earth in places as far flung as Australia, Africa, Russia and the Middle East when Nissan confirmed its Patrol heavy-duty SUV was trading in its good ol' live axles for independent underpinnings.

So what's the Patrol and why should you care? Well in plenty of places, it's a 4x4 icon, conquering the tough terrain of the Middle East since the 1950s and in 1962 becoming the first vehicle to successfully cross Australia's scorching Simpson Desert.

So it's a tough, old-style truck -- go anywhere, do anything, tow anything. Mechanically, it's barely altered in the last 25 years. Philosophically, not at all through 60 years and six generations.

But it's all changed now, much to the chagrin of traditional fans, who fear such things as those newfangled double wishbones will compromise the Patrol's legendary off-road ability.

It's the requirements of North America that have a big role to play in this fundamental shift, because the Patrol is finally headed for the world's largest SUV playground, albeit as the new-generation Infiniti QX56.

Scheduled for unveiling in New York in April, the luxury SUV will have its own external and internal styling features, its own seats and instrument panel, but all the important mechanical and technical stuff and much of the equipment will be shared.

Previously the QX was twinned with Armada, both built in Nissan's Canton, Missouri, plant alongside the Titan pickup. The new QX will be built in Kyushi, Japan, on the same line as the Patrol.

So what happens to the Armada? Pretty much nothing, says Carla Bailo, program manager for the P61G Patrol.

"Right now [the future of the Armada] it is still to be determined," she explains. "The current model based on the current Titan we are going to continue building as long as physically possible, meaning as long as it meets all the emissions and safety requirements.

"We are going to have a next Titan, but whether we turn that into an SUV is still TBD."

So what about turning the Patrol into the Armada? "This is a little bit more sophisticated than the Armada, quite frankly," responds Bailo. "So we are not sure if it is right for that segment. We would have to do some tuning and decontenting."

Thanks to: Motor Trend

Spied: 2012 Porsche 911 Cabriolet


Late last month, we brought you the first spy shots of the next-generation Porsche 911 testing in the snow, replete with subtle body modifications. Now, our spy photographers have captured the nearly identical convertible model testing as well.

New Car: 2011 Volkswagen CrossPolo


It's not really clear to us why people with perfectly average driving styles like to drive cars with big tires, huge fenders, and an altogether aggressive look. But whatever—people gotta drive something, and if their stylistic preferences mean even-meaner-looking, actually purposeful stuff for us, then we’ll let it slide. Volkswagen is catering to both preferences within one model lineup at this year’s Geneva auto show, satisfying speed merchants with the already revealed Polo GTI and serving the rest with this crossover-inspired CrossPolo.

Compared to the standard Polo, the CrossPolo’s body has been raised by about an inch, which should help immensely for off-roading expeditions through city parks. Rugged gray plastic skirts and fenders will take almost any kind of shrubbery-inflicted abuse. But the 17-inch alloy wheels will demand your utmost attention during parallel parking to avoid curb damage.

The CrossPolo comes only as a five-door hatchback, emphasizing its practical nature. Six colors are available, including exclusive Magma Orange, which highlights the wild and crazy nature of the car, and Terra Beige Metallic, which takes on the spirit of your last trip to the Gobi desert. Standard roof rails will support the fuel and water supplies for your next exploration mission.

VW is offering three diesel engines and three gasoline engines. The diesels are all 1.6-liter four-cylinder units making 75, 90, or 105 hp. The gas engines include a 70-hp, 1.2-liter four; an 85-hp, 1.4-liter four; or a turbocharged 105-hp, 1.2-liter—you guessed it—four-cylinder.

It’s worth noting that VW is actually sort of a pioneer in the crossover arena. The 1990 Golf Country, a sort of jacked-up Outback-ish model based on the second- generation Golf, was sneered at in its time, but is a sought-after collector's item today.

While we poke a bit of fun at it here, the VW CrossPolo really is a fun twist on an efficient little car. Sales start in May in Europe and Japan, but this Polo variant is unlikely to make it to the U.S.

Thanks to: Car and Driver

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Spied: 2012 Citroen DS4


This is the first spy photos of the Citroen DS4 crossover testing.

The DS4's styling is set to be previewed by the High Rider concept car, which will be on display at next month's Geneva motor show. It will give the firm a rival to the Nissan Juke and Mini Countryman when it enters production in early 2011.

It uses the new Citroen C4’s platform, itself due to be launched later this year, and is taller and wider than the current C4 hatch at 1480mm and 1820mm, although it is slightly shorter than the current C4 at 4260mm.

However, the styling is much more radical than the C4’s, drawing influence from both the smaller DS3 and the C-SportLounge concept from 2005.

Much of the High Rider’s front-end styling is borrowed from its smaller DS3 sibling, including the grille, headlights, bonnet sculpting and badging, all of which should carry over to the DS4 production car. More radical design features, such as its fog lights, 19-inch alloys and fabric roof, are unlikely to feature.

The DS4’s Engines are likely to be borrowed from the next C4 range and a version of the concept’s diesel-hybrid powertrain should also make production. The electric motor sits on the rear axle, providing extra power and torque to the rear wheels under certain driving conditions. The diesel engine drives the front wheels ensuring the car is four-wheel drive.

The DS4 will be further removed to the C4 than the DS3 is to the C3 and its origins are less obvious than the DS3’s. It will be pitched as a more refined and luxurious model within the C4 range, which includes hatchback and Picasso models, rather than the DS3’s billing as a sporty, more dynamic version of the C3.

The DS4 is scheduled to go on sale early next year, before a C5-based DS5 arrives later in 2011.

Thanks to: Autocar