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2015 Cadillac Escalade

  • 2015 Cadillac Escalade
  • 'Blood Muscle' auction to sell impressive collection of ill-begotten classic cars
  • 2015 Porsche Macan S
  • Rob Ford and Deadmau5 go on memorable coffee run

2015 Dodge Viper getting small increase in power

Posted Aug 1st 2014 6:00PM

2014 SRT Viper GTS

The Viper is used to being the most powerful car in the Dodge and SRT stables, but the arrival of the 2015 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat means that's no longer the case. The serpentine supercar is, however, reportedly getting a small boost in output for 2015, amounting to all of five horsepower.

The increase was uncovered by Road & Track courtesy of the SAE J1349 certification process to which Detroit's Big Three automakers submit themselves and which reports the Viper's output at 645 hp instead of the 640 it was rated at until now. There are a hundred factors that could have contributed to the relatively mild boost in output (best guess? nothing at all changed...), but we doubt anyone's going to complain about some extra horses under the hood.

The five-horsepower boost brings the Viper that much closer to the 650-hp Chevy Corvette Z06, not to mention the 707-hp Hellcat, but the Viper's impressive power-to-weight ratio ought to mean it'll have little problem keeping up in a straight line – which is just one of the reasons why Chrysler won't shoe-horn the Hellcat into the Viper: as R&T points out, the supercharged engine is too heavy and the blower makes it too tall to fit in the Viper's engine bay.

Chrysler's big-bore V10 engine has come a long way from the 400 horsepower it produced back in 1992, increasing displacement by only 24.5 cubic inches but power by over 60 percent over the past 22 years.

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Renault R.S. 01 says hello before debut in Moscow

Posted Aug 1st 2014 5:00PM

Renault Sport RS 01

What does the "RS" in the Renault Clio RS and Megane RS mean? Well, unlike Audi and Porsche, it doesn't stand for Renn Sport. No, it's actually a signifier that said hot hatch has been breathed upon by Renault Sport, the French manufacturer's answer to Volkswagen's R models, Ford's ST hatches and Opel/Vauxhalls's OPC and VXR lines. Its production of forbidden fruit aside, Renault Sport has another project on the burner – the RS 01.

Formerly known as the Renault Sport Trophy, the RS 01 is a 500-horsepower racer that's underpinned by a Dallara carbon-monocoque chassis. Its power is sent to a dedicated set of Michelin slicks through a Sadev seven-speed sequential trans, while the curb weight hovers around 2,500 pounds (1,134 kilograms). A road car, this is not.

And now, we have our very first look at it. As teaser videos go, this 30-second spot from Renault is particularly juicy, giving us an excellent look at the new RS 01 and it's almost prototype-like shape.

Scroll down for the full video and a very short press release, and then keep your eyes on this space, as Renault will officially unveil the RS 01 on August 27 at the Moscow Motor Show.

News Source: renaultsport via YouTube

Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat ringtone revs up [w/video]

Posted Aug 1st 2014 4:01PM

2015 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat

The best (or worst, depending on your views) thing about smartphones is that you're able to carry lots, and lots of useful stuff around in your pocket. That means you can always have a phone, messaging service, email, flashlight, calculator, dictionary, encyclopedia, and literally thousands of other things on your person at all times. Now, we can add one more thing for you to carry about in your little slab of aluminum, glass and plastic – a Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat.

Now, you obviously can't carry around a 707-horsepower muscle car around in your pocket. That'd be ridiculous, impractical and uncomfortable. You can, however, carry around the noise made by said muscle car's 6.2-litre, supercharged Hemi V8, thanks to a new, free-to-download ringtone from the folks at Dodge and SRT.

We can't embed the ringtone here, so if you'd like to hear exactly how it'll sound when your phone goes off, you'll need to head over to the SRT Hellcat's page. If that's more trouble than it's worth, the same ringtone was attached to a tiny speaker on the press kit for the mighty Challenger, and was captured on video by our own Seyth Miersma (don't worry, he's already been soundly dressed down for shooting a video in portrait mode).

Scroll down for both the video of the ringtone, and the official press release from Dodge.

2015 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat Burnout | Autoblog Short Cuts

News Source: Seyth Miersma via Facebook

Image Credit: Copyright 2014 Seyth Miersma / AOL

Will this McLaren F1 sell for over $12 million at Pebble Beach?

Posted Aug 1st 2014 2:57PM

1995 McLaren F1 #0065

Decades ago, a dominant Formula One team made a few dozen examples of a sports car that was as devastating on the track as it was on the road, and as such, it has become highly sought-after by collectors willing to pay millions – even tens of millions – for the privilege of ownership. We have to be talking about the Ferrari 250 GTO, right? We very well could be, but in this case, no: we're talking about the McLaren F1 – a legendary supercar whose values seem to be skyrocketing in the footsteps of its arch-rival's most iconic classic. And if this latest pre-auction estimate is anything to go by, it will only continue to climb as quickly as it accelerates.

The past couple of McLaren F1s on whose sales we've reported traded hands for over $5 million apiece and we thought that was pretty spectacular, but this latest example consigned to Gooding & Company for its upcoming sale at Pebble Beach has an expected selling price of between US$12 million and US$14 million.

Chassis No. 031, a 1995 model, is a bit of a rarity in that it's one of only a handful of McLaren F1s painted in white, and the only one in this particular shade of Marlboro White, adopting the colour of the grand prix team's title sponsor at the time. It's had only three owners who've put barely over 1,000 miles (1,600 km) on the odometer, starting in Japan, where it resided with collector Shin Okamoto for 15 years before he sold it to a collector in Chicago, who in turn sold it to its current owner who's putting it up for auction. The 27th example built, it's said to be in "highly original" condition, was extensively serviced at the McLaren factory as recently as 2008, and comes with all its original manuals, tools and fitted luggage.

Is all of that enough to make this 1995 McLaren F1 worth more than twice what they've been going for? If someone pays it, we suppose it will. But the McLaren isn't even the most expensive lot consigned for the auction. Little surprise, it'll have to compete with a number of much older Ferrari models for that honour: a 250 GT SWB California Spider is estimated to fetch US$13-15 million, the estimate for a similar coupe has not even been released, and a rare three-seater 1966 Ferrari 365 P Berlinetta Speciale could go for over US$20 million.

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News Source: Gooding & Company

Image Credit: Brian Henniker / Gooding

See what a Nissan infested with a whole lot of NOPE looks like

Posted Aug 1st 2014 2:00PM



We apologize in advance for what you are about to watch. Truly.

In the video posted below, you'll see what looks like a Nissan Quest infested with an impossibly disgusting horde of cockroaches. We don't have any information on how or why this is even happening (beyond the guy filming mentioning this car belongs to a man he calls an "absolute hoarder") and frankly, we don't care.

You've been warned, while we're watching this, we not only see a car full of the devil incarnate crawling around in a filthy Nissan, we can practically feel it. Watching this video makes us want to hop onboard the nope-train all the way to GetthehelloutofheresVille. Time to call the exterminator... or pray that Smaug takes his vengeance out on this car. #NOPE.

News Source: FB-RAMBO via LiveLeak

Edmunds' long-term Tesla Model S has been wonderful, woeful

Posted Aug 1st 2014 1:00PM

Tesla Model S

We generally don't report on other outlets' long-term model tests, but Edmunds just completed a 17-month ownership experience with a 2013 Tesla Model S. It's just too interesting not to share.

The site bought a 2013 Model S Performance model for the added range of its 85-kilowatt-hour battery and tossed on a good variety of options for a total price of US$105,005, including a wall charger. In terms of driving the electric hatchback, the folks there seemed to love it. There were a few minor gripes, but for the most part it offered sufficient driving range, plenty of space and generally good quality.

However, the ownership experience was hardly flawless. The journalists there were never quite able to hit the Model S' promised range of 265 miles (427 kilometres), with a best real-world result of 230.4 miles (370.8 kilometres) during their ownership. Also, while they had it, the Model S had a rash of unscheduled trips for service – seven times – and their Tesla left them stranded by the side of the road once.

These weren't just some minor quibbles, either. The drive unit was replaced three times and the main battery once. That massive center info screen had to be manually reset nine times and was completely replaced once, as well. Edmunds writers forgave some of the faults, though. Their Tesla was an early production model, and some of the fixes were a result of technical service bulletins. They never had to pay for any of it, other than buying a new set of tires.

While this is all anecdotal evidence based on just a single Model S, it doesn't make the Model S sound like an easy car to live with all the time. You can get the full skinny on the love/loathe affair directly from Edmunds by clicking here.

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News Source: Edmunds

Image Credit: Copyright 2014 Drew Phillips / AOL

2015 Cadillac Escalade

Posted Aug 1st 2014 12:00PM



The fourth-generation 2015 Cadillac Escalade is among the most important new Cadillacs since the division's renaissance kicked into high gear. It's clearly the brand's de facto flagship vehicle, and the first thing many people think of when hearing the name "Cadillac."

Leading up to the debut of the 2015 Cadillac Escalade, we were told that the new luxo-SUV would be "much less ostentatious" and that we could expect greater differentiation from its Chevy Tahoe/Suburban and GMC Yukon siblings. And while those things may be true to some extent, after digesting the full raft of Escalade information and getting a full day of driving it in and around Toronto, we can say that this new 2015 model is exactly what we were expecting all along and dare we say it maybe more... READ FULL REVIEW

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Image Credit: Copyright 2014 Mark Pereira / Autoblog Quebec

Bret Michaels Poisons Nissan's new truck commercial

Posted Aug 1st 2014 11:00AM

Bret Michaels for Nissan Commercial

Mötley Crüe isn't the only 1980s hair-metal band getting into the world of selling out to pitch new car commercials. Poison frontman and reality show "star" Bret Michaels is following their lead and doing some auto advertising of his own. Where the Crüe have been all over the airwaves in recent years with a Super Bowl ad for Kia and music licensing with Dodge, Michaels has taken a very different route by becoming the pitchman for Nissan's line-up of commercial vehicles.

These recently released videos run the gamut to advertise predominantly the NV line of full-size vans, but the NV200 shows up a few times too. The star of this new campaign is Michaels' full-length music video (above) for the song Tough Love. It's basically a parody of all of those '80s rock ballads where the bands would slow the tempo down a little and reveal their softer side. Michaels rocks out at the Nissan proving grounds in Stanfield, AZ, while showing off the evaluation process and strutting around like a proper rock frontman. There are also a bunch of shorter videos (below) with the singer highlighting each part of the vans' torture testing.

Although, the dialogue in these come off a bit more stilted. With these '80s metal bands getting into advertising, can it be long before Warrant is shilling for Fiat or Ratt for Mazda?

Click here to watch and let us know what you think on our Autoblog Canada facebook page.

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News Source: Nissan USA via YouTube [1], [2], [3], [4], [5], [6], [7]

Road Race Motorsports rolls out Fiat 500 M1 Turbo Tallini Competizione

Posted Aug 1st 2014 10:00AM

Fiat 500 M1 Turbo Tallini Competizione

We've seen some pretty radical modifications based on the Fiat 500 – from the Abarth 695 Biposto to that ridiculous idea to put a Ferrari engine in the back of a Cinquecento – but we never seem to get tired of it. On that note, we bring you the Fiat 500 M1 Turbo Tallini Competizione.

Built by Road Race Motorsports, the M1 takes a tarmac-rally approach and features an extensive list of modifications. For starters, the engine has been retuned to produce 250 horsepower and 250 pound-feet of torque, helping to knock a second off the 0-60 (0-96 km/h) time (7.2 seconds from the factory). Upgraded brakes net a 20-per cent improvement in stopping distance, and Road Race has put a special emphasis on high-speed stability and cornering performance.

Other modifications include a limited-slip differential, carbon-kevlar clutch and a reworked suspension with Bilstein shocks, stiffer bushings and upgraded sway bar, with 16-inch wheels wearing Toyo Proxes rubber. In addition to a full carbon-fiber wide-body kit that helps cut 120 pounds (54 kilograms) off the curb weight, Road Race has given the M1 a new front air dam, side skirts, hood vents, brake ducts and rear spoiler. The interior has similarly been upgraded with racing buckets, five-point harnesses and a roll cage.

Road Race will only build 50 individually numbered examples of what it calls "the only Special Edition Fiat built in the Western Hemisphere... since Fiat's reintroduction to North America." With an extensive list of options, prices range from $15k to $100k.

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News Source: Road Race Motorsports

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