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Xcar goes analog with the Ferrari F40

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Kia Soul getting turbo power, possible AWD

Posted Sep 18th 2014 9:00AM

2015 Kia Soul

It's been a long time coming, but it appears we might finally see a turbocharged Kia Soul next year. Kia officials reportedly confirmed the hotter Soul to Motor Trend recently, and also stated that the company is (still) investigating the use of all-wheel drive for the next generation of its boxy hatchback.

The turbo Soul will arrive with the same 1.6-litre four-cylinder found in the Forte, rated at 201 horsepower and 195 pound-feet of torque. According to Motor Trend, Kia wanted to launch the hotter Soul this year, but didn't have the retuned steering or suspension calibration, as well as the larger brakes, ready in time. Transmission pairings weren't discussed, but Kia does mate both its six-speed manual and automatic units to the 1.6T.

As for all-wheel drive, this isn't the first time we've heard reports on this front, and it seems like a pretty natural fit, to us. Adding AWD would allow the Soul to better compete with vehicles like the Nissan Juke and the upcoming Chevy Trax and Jeep Renegade. But as of right now, a four-wheels-driven Soul hasn't been given an official go-ahead.

News Source: Motor Trend

Mercedes B-Class gets fresh facelift for 2014 Paris Motor Show

Posted Sep 18th 2014 8:00AM

2015 Mercedes-Benz B-Class

Front-drive hatchbacks are the name of the game these days in the German automotive industry. In recent years BMW has gotten into the game with the 2 Series Active Tourer, while Audi has stepped up its game with the A1 and Mercedes has been keen to play, too. The Silver Arrow has rolled out the new A-Class and its sedan sister, the CLA, as well as the GLA crossover, and you can bet there'll be more to come. But Benz doesn't want you to forget about the B-Class, so it's introducing an updated version.

Mercedes first introduced the B-Class back in 2005, replacing it with the second-generation model in 2011. But with its newer stablemates garnering the lion's share of attention at the bottom of the Benz range, and increased competition from rival automakers, the B-Class has undergone some minor updates. Up front you'll find a reshaped bumper, grille and headlights, along with new taillights and bumper around back. There's also a revised interior designed to convey a more upscale environment, with colour-changing ambient lighting and an eight-inch touchscreen display atop the dashboard. Of course, this being a Mercedes update, the new B-Class benefits from added safety systems as well.

Buyers in markets where the B-Class is sold will be able to choose between three new trim levels and a staggering array of four-cylinder engine options, with gasoline engines ranging in output from 122 to 211 horsepower, and diesels from 90 to 177 hp – some available with 4Matic all-wheel drive. There's also a natural gas version, and the B-Class Electric Drive – the only version offered Stateside – continues with the same output. Look for the new B-Class to make its live debut at the Paris Motor Show next month.


2016 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Facelift Trailer

News Source: Mercedes-Benz

2015 Infiniti QX70S Design gets ready for Paris Motor Show debut

Posted Sep 18th 2014 7:00AM

Infiniti QX70S Design

Dig the Infiniti QX70 but wish it were just a touch more low-key? Infiniti will have the answer at the fast-approaching Paris Motor Show, where it will launch the QX70S Design.

Based on the vehicle erstwhile known as the FX, the QX70S Design gets dark chrome all over: on the grille, foglight surrounds, side air vents, side sills and license plate surround. The headlights are smoked and the 21-inch six-spoke wheels, roof rails and mirror caps are painted black.

The darkened treatment continues inside with black lacquer trim and black leather with purple stitching. The S Design otherwise gets all the equipment of the S Premium model. It goes on sale in Europe right after its debut in Paris, and while we're told this trim isn't planned for the North American market, there's no telling what the future will hold.

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News Source: Infiniti

Take a spin in a street-legal Lancia Group B rally car

Posted Sep 17th 2014 8:00PM

Petrolicious Lancia 037

Lancia's death is sad for many, many reasons, chief among which is the end of its wonderful, wild rally heritage. While the brand might best be known for the Stratos and the Delta HF Integrale, there was another big name model, called the 037, that did its best to live up to the family name.

The last of a dying breed, the 037 debuted as a rear-driver at the dawn of all-wheel-drive dominance. Despite its disadvantage, though, it still captured a WRC championship in 1983, and managed to finish second to Audi in 1984 and Peugeot in 1986. It remains the last rear-drive car to win the WRC title.

As per Group B regulations, Lancia built a limited run of homolgation specials. The street version, the 037 Stradale, sports a 2.0-litre, supercharged Abarth engine – detuned from the rally cars, of course – while this particular example benefits from a rortier exhaust, meaning it produces somewhere around 240 horsepower, according to Toledano.

It's a truly stunning piece, and one worthy of coverage by the team at Petrolicious. Take a look at the video.

News Source: Petrolicious via YouTube

Nissan ZEOD RC on track and from behind the wheel

Posted Sep 17th 2014 7:00PM

Nissan Zeod RC takes on the Top Gear test track

The Nissan ZEOD RC hybrid racecar has had mixed success in its competition life. It was invented to do a completely electric, high-speed lap at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, which it was able to do in practice. However, when the big event actually came, the car lasted less than an hour before it had to bow out with transmission issues. Nissan hasn't completely given up on its experiment, though. The experience (and possibly some of the tech) is going to help with the GT-R LM racer next year, and now the ZEOD is getting its chance to see how it handles the Top Gear test track.

Unfortunately, it's not The Stig piloting the ZEOD; instead, the magazine's motoring editor Ollie Marriage is the lucky man for the job. The car's sharp shape seems to be a good metaphor for how it handles because it just seems to dart around the track. Its tiny, turbocharged 1.5-litre engine with 400 horsepower and two electric motors put out a claimed 750 horsepower, and that seems like plenty for the relatively short Top Gear course.

As usual of Top Gear, the cinematography here is fantastic, and a second video shows off a single lap of the course from around the car. It's amazing to watch, especially with its big screen constantly showing the camera view out of the rear. Scroll down to see both.

News Source: Top Gear via YouTube [1], [2]

Lamborghini announces new car coming to Paris with cryptic teaser

Posted Sep 17th 2014 6:00PM

Lamborghini Paris teaser image

"Once perfection is achieved, you can just double it."

What in the name of Ferruccio Lamborghini does that mean? Well, we have no idea, and we think that's sorta the point. Lamborghini wants us to know that it's bringing something very interesting to the Paris Motor Show, and it wants the public and press alike wondering what it might have up its finely tailored sleeves.

Taking a look at the white-on-black line drawing that accompanies the teaser (click above to enlarge), we note a pretty clear fastback shape, which reminds us of the classic Espada, and we also know that the brand has long been considering a four-door sedan to add to its high-performance portfolio. Either way, a four-seater or a four-door machine could seemingly fit with the "double it" tagline of the teaser, and we're really just speculating anyway.

So, while we get nary a blink of sleep ahead of the car's October 2nd Paris debut, feel free to dissect the teaser yourselves and let us know what you think it is in Comments.

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News Source: Lamborghini

Hawaii road rage minivan mom gets arrested after "Go Fat Boy" viral video

Posted Sep 17th 2014 5:00PM



If you're looking for good parenting tips, you won't find any here, as this road raging mom goes on a NSFW rampage following an incident on the streets of Hawaii.

Check out this angry soccer mom's hot temper in action, as she not only confronts and antagonizes a driver for apparently "cutting her off," but goes on to scream obscenities and taunt him by chanting "Go fat boy, go fat boy!" (which will no doubt spawn many great viral video remixes still to come).

Thanks to the video footage which quickly spread online, it seems to have caught the attention of local authorities in Hawaii, who've allegedly identified and since arrested the potty-mouthed minivan mom according to Huffpost Crime.

Click here to watch the entire clip for yourself and remember, road rage just ain't worth it folks.

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News Source: Huffpost Crime via AOL On

Image Credit: Via Huffpost Crime

Mercedes boosts CLA supplies, says it could sell twice as many

Posted Sep 17th 2014 4:00PM

2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class

It's been a few months since we talked about the Mercedes-Benz CLA's status as an unmitigated hit, but a new story from Automotive News will allow us to revisit the sleek, fast-selling, four-door home run. Production has been increased again, with some of the extra capacity destined for North American showrooms.

"We could have sold twice as many vehicles, easily, compared to our planning," Daimler AG boss Dieter Zetsche told AN.

Dealers are sitting on perilously small supplies of the CLA, with Mercedes execs confirming to AN that a few dealers have slipped below a ten-day supply. For reference, a 60-day supply is generally considered healthy.

Mercedes' Kecskemét, Hungary factory added a third shift back in May to address high demand for the four-door. Zetsche was unwilling to divulge how many more cars the facility will be able to churn out with this latest production increase, though.

"We do not want our customers to have to wait too much," Zetsche told AN. "Wherever we could, we pulled out all the stops."

News Source: Automotive News - sub. req.

Image Credit: Copyright 2014 Seyth Miersma / AOL

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