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2015 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat [w/videos]

  • 2015 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat [w/videos]
  • Gran Turismo 6 video game car comes to life with Nissan's 2020 GT-R Concept
  • Stadium Truck Stunt Ride with Robby Gordon on the Streets of Toronto
  • 2015 BMW i3 test drive reveals all you need to know

Chop the top of your new Dodge Viper for $35,000

Posted Jul 23rd 2014 2:00PM

Prefix Performance Dodge Viper Medusa convertible

We have good news, and we have bad news. First, the good: It's now possible to get a brand-new Dodge Viper roadster, which is nice, considering we're in the dead of summer and many of us like wind-in-the-hair motoring. Now, the bad: This is not a factory option from the automaker, instead coming courtesy of an aftermarket company called Prefix Performance, and that means it's going to cost you some serious coin.

Called Medusa, this drop-top Viper was created without the knowledge or consent of Dodge, but that's probably fine because Prefix works with the automaker already for the final preparation of the American supercar, including paint. According to the company, the current, fifth-gen Viper was built with a convertible version in mind, so no chassis strengthening is required. From the looks of the somewhat grainy photos available, the conversion appears of very high quality.

Want one? Well, that means you're going to need to procure a Viper – Prefix has 10 units ready for transformation as it stands – and that's going to cost at the very least US$102,485. Then, you'll need to write a check for an additional US$35,000 for Prefix to surgically remove the car's roof. Thing is, for that kind of cash, a prospective owner could buy, among other very nice options, a Viper hardtop and a loaded Miata, or a Corvette Stingray convertible and several pockets full of change. Or, perhaps a new Viper hardtop and a used, first-gen Viper convertible?

If you're still interested (and we wouldn't blame you if you were, regardless of the value debate), we'd suggest getting in touch with Prefix and getting yourself in line. In the meantime, feel free to check out the images above and below.

How Hollywood furthered our automotive obsession [w/videos]

Posted Jul 23rd 2014 1:01PM

Our Favourite Cars From The Big And Small Screens

Generally, General Lee

The car enthusiast's passion generally isn't founded in any single experience. It is a result of many influences, coming from places like our parents, our surrounding area's culture and, almost always, the media.

The automobile plays both major and minor roles in nearly every movie and TV show known to mankind. Today the editors at Autoblog, Autoblog Canada and AOL Autos are paying homage to a few of these, acknowledging the ones that stand out in our minds as having played a profound part in forming our ardor for all things automotive.

Head on past the jump to see the cars from the big and small screen for which our staff still pines. And make sure to tell us about your favorite movie/TV cars, in Comments.

Image Credit: Bruno_me - Flickr

2015 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat [w/videos]

Posted Jul 23rd 2014 11:57AM

If You Ain't First, You're Last

Darrell Waltrip once said, "If the lion didn't bite the tamer every once in a while, it wouldn't be exciting." The sentiment behind that aphorism is causing my adrenal gland to wake up as Dodge and SRT drivers and engineers – somber-faced to a man – give me the track talk that will precede my driving the 2015 Dodge Challenger SRT on the circuit at Portland International Raceway. PIR might not be Daytona, and the 707-horsepower Challenger Hellcat might seem tame to a legend like ol' Jaws, but there's a not-small part of me that's thinking about how hard Dodge's fire-breathing kitty might bite.

Just a few hours previous, I'd gotten behind the wheel of the Hellcat for the first time, letting its hyperbole-spitting, supercharged V8 Hemi pull me yieldingly through Portland's morning commuter traffic. Lulled into a cocky certainty by the Challenger's good manners at low speed, I drove the throttle just a hair too deep, too fast when I ran on to the highway ramp. For just an instant the rear tires were utterly drenched in torque, and the back end of the big Dodge loosened up like a drift car on a wet track. Throttle steer lives at the fleeting whim of your right foot in this car.

It was no big thing to lay off the gas and pull the Hellcat back in line as I entered the highway, but the incident did get me to thinking: What will this car do to me on a road course?

With the track talk ended, I picked up a helmet and a head sock – stand-ins for the whip and the chair every good lion tamer needs – hoping like hell I wouldn't end up as a gravel-track snack for the new biggest predator in the muscle car circus.

Image Credit: Copyright 2014 Seyth Miersma / AOL

Mercedes-AMG GT's new V8 will sound just like an AMG should

Posted Jul 23rd 2014 10:58AM

Mercedes-AMG GT

When it comes to sweet-sounding V8s, there are few outfits around the globe that can match the work of Mercedes-Benz's AMG division. The in-house performance group has blessed us with such masterpieces of metal as the iconic 6.2-litre V8, code-named M156, the supercharged V8 from the McLaren SLR, code-named M155, and the 6.2-litre V8 found in the SLS AMG, code-named M159.

The next great sounding AMG engine is code-named M178, and it will sit under the long hood of the Mercedes-AMG GT. The 4.0-litre V8 will turn out 503 horsepower and 479 pound-feet of torque with the help of two turbochargers. Of course, you already know this. We detailed it all right here.

Today, though, we have more on the sound that will come from this GT's four, rectangular tailpipes, in the form of a short video. The new model will boast four different driving modes, each of which comes with its own unique acoustic signature. We like the idea of being able to choose things like suspension firmness, but when it comes to engine noise, we'll leave it on the loudest setting, thank you very much. As has been the case with most AMG-badged Mercedes products (regardless of the number of cylinders under hood), the GT should also pack a ear-pleasing bark on startup.

Scroll down for the full video on the sounds of the new Mercedes-AMG GT.

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News Source: Mercedes-AMG via YouTube

Will Dodge limit 2015 Challenger SRT Hellcat to 1,200 units?

Posted Jul 23rd 2014 10:00AM

2015 Dodge Challenge SRT Hellcat

With over 700 horsepower on tap and a price tag barely over $60k in Canada, Dodge appears on paper to have a winner on its hands with the new Challenger SRT Hellcat. But if you want to get your hands on one, you may have to act quicker than this most powerful of muscle cars covers the quarter-mile.

That's because, according to our compatriots over at Edmunds, Dodge may limit production – in the first year, at least – to just 1,200 units. That would amount to barely a quarter of the Challengers that Dodge moves each month, and would also mean only one Hellcat for every two Dodge dealers in North America - which could lead to some serious contention over which stores and which customers can get their hands on the ultimate Challenger.

Reached for comment, SRT spokesman Dan Reid told Autoblog Canada that "there is no plan to limit production of the Challenger Hellcat," echoing the words of Dodge CEO Tim Kuniskis who told Edmunds: "We don't know what the market demand is." Which doesn't mean that it won't restrict production, but doesn't mean that it will, either. It just hasn't decided yet - or announced any such decision, at any rate - over what will be the final allocation strategy for what could be a game-changing muscle car. That is, at least, until new versions of the Mustang and Camaro come along in pursuit of Dodge's bragging rights...

News Source: Edmunds

James Garner, celebrated actor and auto enthusiast, dies at age 86 [w/videos]

Posted Jul 23rd 2014 9:00AM


James Garner, star of such Hollywood television and film classics as Maverick and The Rockford Files, has passed away at his home at the age of 86. Garner is believed to have died of natural causes.

While Garner is best known for his television and movie roles, he was also a certified car guy. After starring in Grand Prix in 1966, James Garner developed a taste for racing, later being part owner of the American International Racers team, which took part in Le Mans, Daytona and Sebring endurance racing events. Garner's outfit also took part in the Baja 500, finishing 7 out of 10 AMC SC/Ramblers and taking three out of the top five positions. Garner himself drove an Oldsmobile 442 in off-road competition in 1969 and 1970. Garner's love of racing extended to the Indy 500, where he drove the pace car in 1975, 1977 and 1985.

With such a certified pedigree for competition racing, it comes as little surprise that Garner's automotive obsessions carried over into this acting career, gaining particular notoriety in The Rockford Files, where the gold Pontiac Firebird Esprit Garner's character drove became something of a star in its own right. Anyone who has watched the series is surely familiar with the J-turn that Garner's character, Jim Rockford, employed for quick getaways. So engrained was this stunt, which Garner performed himself, in the show that it is commonly referred to as the Rockford Turn.

We've gathered together some auto-themed clips for which Garner is known. Scroll down to take a short trip down memory lane as we celebrate the life and career of James Garner.

News Source: ABC News

Image Credit: Moviestore Collection Ltd / Alamy

The best place to get your Top Gear fix online has been thwacked by lawyers

Posted Jul 23rd 2014 8:00AM

Top Gear World Tour - Photocall

The website Final Gear is one of the premiere fan sites for Top Gear on the Internet. For over a decade, it has been providing followers of the show and its spinoffs with BitTorrent links for the episodes and gave people a place to discuss all things related. However, the site was hobbled on July 17 by a Digital Millennium Copyright Act Takedown notice that forced it to remove all of its links to the series... READ MORE

News Source: Final Gear [1], [2]

Image Credit: Ferdaus Shamim / WireImage

Top 5 best stick shift cars under $30,000

Posted Jul 22nd 2014 7:35PM

Top 5 Stick Shift Cars

As auto enthusiasts, we have to accept that the general public is never going to embrace the manual transmission in a big way ever again. Automatics, CVTs and dual clutches are winning the war, in part because many people think of their car as an appliance. It transports them to and from work, and any way to make the drudgery involve less conscious thought is a welcome relief.

The fact that modern automatics are often more fuel efficient than three-pedal setups isn't helping either. However, the stick shift isn't dead yet. Manual-transmission cars are hanging on to their fan base like the vinyl LP's of the road and the video above lists the top 5 cheapest cars with a clutch

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News Source: CNET via AOL On

Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 race car will make you cry for mommy

Posted Jul 22nd 2014 7:00PM

What It's Like to Sit Shotgun in the Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3
GT Academy USA winner Steve Doherty takes the wheel as our friends at show us what it's like to ride shotgun during a quick spin in a Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 race car.

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