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Ken Block puts stunt driving skills against Neymar Jr. in funny Footkhana video

  • Ken Block puts stunt driving skills against Neymar Jr. in funny Footkhana video
  • Watch R/C fans car chase tribute to Fast and Furious franchise
  • W Motors Lykan Hypersport caught on the street
  • HIGHLIGHTS: The top secret supercar meet you've never heard of

Renault gunning for sub-8-minute Nürburgring lap time

Posted Apr 24th 2014 6:00PM

#Under8

While hybrid hypercars like the Porsche 918 Spyder, McLaren P1 and Ferrari LaFerrari are thrown into the (at least hypothetical) battle for the sub-7-minute Nürburgring lap record, there's another war waging further down the time sheets. That's for the fastest lap clocked around the Nordschleife in a front-wheel-drive production vehicle.

Arguably more relevant to the common (European) man, this war is being waged between the top hot hatches on the Continental market. Seat became the current leader when it clocked a lap time of 7:58.4 in the new Leon Cupra 280, and Honda has made no secret of its intent to take the record with the upcoming Civic Type R. We wouldn't be surprised to see Opel go for it with the Astra OPC Extreme, but before any of these contenders came along, the record rightfully belonged to Renault.

The French automaker set a time of 8:16.9 with the Mégane R26.R back in 2008, then reset the record at 8:07.9 in 2011 with the newer Mégane Trophy. Evidently unhappy to see its bragging rights stolen away by the Spanish (and eyed by the Japanese and Germans), Renaultsport is apparently preparing an even hotter hatch with the explicit aim of setting a sub-8-minute lap time of its own.

Teased with the social media hashtag #Under8, the project is apparently bringing on board the collaboration of Michelin for tires, Akrapovic for the exhaust, Öhlins for the suspension and BRM as official timing partner. Accompanying the image above on Renault Sport's Facebook page just days ago was the caption "two months to go", hinting that the attempt will be made sometime in mid-June.

We'd assume the Mégane will once again serve as the base, and if they want the time to mean anything, it'll have to be offered for sale. Unfortunately since Renault doesn't market in North America it's all rather theoretical to us, but as far as theoretical challenges go, this one's shaping up to be one for the record books.

News Source: Renault Sport via Facebook

2015 Honda HR-V looks fit for the urban jungle

Posted Apr 24th 2014 6:00PM

2015 Honda HR-V

Honda has been teasing us with the looks of its Fit-based compact crossover for months. Now the production version, dubbed the HR-V in North America, has finally been unveiled – in photographic form, at any rate – at the 2014 New York Auto Show. The CUV will slot into the brand's range this winter, and at the moment the company is keeping mum on many details about the new model.

The HR-V looks almost identical to the Urban SUV Concept unveiled at the Detroit Auto Show. The concept wore some nifty LED headlights and bigger wheels, but the rest of the styling has carried over to production. The handsome CUV sports diamond-shaped headlights, and a centre bar splits the grille into two tiers. It has the same swoosh down the side running to the C-pillar, but it appears slightly less pronounced than in Detroit. The rear door handles are also hidden in the back pillar.

The compact crossover rides on the same platform as the new Fit. That allows it to take full advantage of the compact's highly versatile interior. The HR-V comes with Honda's Magic Seat that allows the back row to fold flat into the floor when needed.

Honda has given no indication about which powertrains the HR-V is going be to offered with. It's expected that the 1.5-liter direct injected four-cylinder and CVT is going to be one option, but the possibility of also offering a turbocharged version of the four has also been rumoured. The automaker says more details are coming closer to launch.

The HR-V will slot in below the CR-V in terms of size and price when it goes on sale. All models are being built at Honda's new factory in Celaya, Mexico, that also builds the new Fit for North America. Scroll down to read the details in the release.

Related GalleryHonda Urban SUV Concept: Detroit 2013
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News Source: Honda

Danica Patrick, Brooke Burke pitch Can-Am Spyder as ultimate paparazzi escape tool

Posted Apr 24th 2014 4:55PM

Can-Am Spyder Team

Can-Am has added another pair of stars to its advertising push for the three-wheeled Spyder motorcycle. After showing former NHL star Mark Messier guaranteeing a number of things (playing on his guarantee of winning a crucial game in the Stanley Cup playoffs in 1994), the company has hired IndyCar and NASCAR star Danica Patrick, and model/television personality Brooke Burke to talk about the Can-Am Spyder's talents as a paparazzi escape vehicle.

It's a clever little ad, showing a sort of silly, celebrity oriented version of Uber. That said, we'd argue that based on the rather dark history of paparazzi harassment and the tendency for stars or paparazzos to be injured or arrested when trying to escape from the cameras, the spot walks a fine line in terms of taste. Click here to watch these two ladies and their need for three-wheeled speed.

Image Credit: Can-Am

Audi A3 named 2014 World Car of the Year

Posted Apr 24th 2014 4:00PM

2015 Audi A3

As usual, the second press day of the New York Auto Show was kicked off by the World Car of the Year Awards. Rather than fluff things up, we'll cut right to the chase: top honours go to the brand-new Audi A3, which bested the Mazda3 and BMW 4 Series for the all-important award.

Of course, the wonderful thing about the World Car awards is that there isn't just one big announcement – other honours are given out for specific categories. Here are the other winners from this year's ceremony: Have a look at our list of finalists to see which cars didn't make the cut, and be sure to let us know if you agree or disagree with the winners, in Comments.

Image Credit: Copyright 2014 Michael Harley / AOL

Car pool? Woman smashes brick wall and crash lands in swimming pool

Posted Apr 24th 2014 3:00PM

Car Crashes Thru Brick Wall Into Pool

Some things are never meant to go together, like Dennis Rodman and North Korea, hairdryers and bathtubs, oh and of course swimming pools and cars! Oddly enough this happens more than you think, as we've already spotted a man crashing his new Camaro ZL1 into a pool (proving it's not waterproof) and a security camera that caught an elderly woman and her car making a sudden splash.

The video above is yet another fine example of some VERY distracted driving, as the news report captures the full trail of destruction after a Texas women lost control of her vehicle, smashed it through a brick wall and then crash landed into someone's backyard swimming pool.

According to reports, the female driver is now recovering in a San Antonio, TX hospital as authorities (and insurance companies) try to figure out how something like this could happen and total up the hefty cost of damage done.

92-Year-Old Drives Car Into Pool

News Source: via AOL On

Ferrari threatening to fine journalists $76,000 for breaking LaFerrari embargo

Posted Apr 24th 2014 2:00PM

Ferrari LaFerrari

In automotive journalism, we deal with embargoes on a regular basis. For the uninitiated, these are agreements between publications like Autoblog Canada and manufacturers. While news embargoes (where pubs are provided with information and images and agree to hold until a predetermined date) are fairly common, today, we're focusing on drive embargoes. These are what we generally end up signing when we attend a vehicle launch. Generally, these are in the media's best interest. As drive programs are spread out over a week or two with multiple different "waves" of media, drive embargoes put the biggest and smallest publications on level footing when it comes to publishing reviews.

According to a report from Autocar's Steve Sutcliffe, Ferrari has taken its drive embargo for the LaFerrari hypercar a bit too far. See, initial reviews from the few publications that attended the drive event for the hybrid-powered monster can hit the newsstand or internet on April 30. Originally, syndicated stories – those sold by freelancers or publications to other outlets – couldn't be published until May 12. These syndicated reviews are big money for larger magazines and, in the case of freelance journalists, are a primary source of revenue. Inexplicably, though, Ferrari has pushed the syndication embargo back to May 26, which is bad news for everyone involved (aside from Ferrari).

This could have been nothing more than an annoyance. The stories would still get sold (although it might be for a bit less coin, considering the initial reviews will be nearly a month old) and you'll still be bombarded by reviews of the LaFerrari not once, but twice, just as Ferrari planned.

What's truly weird, though, is what Ferrari is doing to try and enforce its syndication embargo – the Scuderia is threatening to fine journalists 50,000 euro (CAD$76,370 at today's rates) if their embargoed copy or images are published before May 26. Let's keep in mind, this isn't a leak of driving impressions – those are almost certainly going to be published at 12:01 AM on April 30 by every publication that attended the drive program – it's merely the secondary publication of an old review.

Not only is the reasoning for this absolutely bewildering – Ferrari doesn't seem to gain anything by limiting secondary publishing of LaFerrari reviews – but as Jalopnik's Matt Hardigree points out, it basically puts a price tag on breaking an embargo. Publications that aren't invited to drive the LaFerrari but can afford to pay the $76,370 fine have no reason to follow the embargo (they obviously weren't invited to drive the car, so why worry about angering Ferrari?).

Sutcliffe has a more concise breakdown of the entire affair over at Autocar. Have a look, and then head back here and let us know what you think.

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News Source: Autocar via Jalopnik

Hyundai presents 70 movies in 10 minutes... and it's very strange

Posted Apr 24th 2014 1:01PM

Hyundai 70 movies video

Hyundai i10 ShortCuts 70 films in 10 minutesIt's not often we can use the term "trippy" to describe anything we post here at Autoblog Canada, but this German video, promoted by Hyundai and starring the brand's European-spec i10 is trippy, surreal and totally bizarre. And we love it.

Movie buffs will appreciate this ridiculous mix of classic movies into a strange mishmash that makes no sense at all. From Silence of the Lambs to the Terminator series to Pulp Fiction, The Godfather and 300, there's the list of films parodied in this spot is wildly diverse. We've watched a few times, and while we can name the vast majority of classic films shown, we have no idea what the actual point of the video is.

Take a look below and let us know what you think in Comments. But beware, there is some NSFW language.

News Source: Shortcuts via YouTube

2014 BMW 328i xDrive Gran Turismo

Posted Apr 24th 2014 11:57AM

2014 BMW 328i xDrive Gran Turismo

"The Ultimate Driving Machine" has been BMW's tagline for nearly 40 years. Launched in the 1970s, the marketing campaign was a stroke of genius by ad firm Ammirati & Puris, as the phrase helped differentiate the imported Bavarian cars from their fellow European rivals by subtly pointing out that Mercedes-Benz and Audi were offering luxury models, while BMW was selling sporty and youthful driving dynamics. The campaign worked – some would argue that stands among the most effective ad campaigns ever – and countless Baby Boomers embraced the brand's fun-to-drive image by taking delivery of the company's new models.

BMW still boasts that its vehicles are "The Ultimate Driving Machine" four decades later, but the brand is very different today. It offered just a few model lines in the mid-1970s, and only a handful of vehicles within. In 2014, the automaker offers an exhaustive range comprised of nearly a dozen lines with almost 50 different models. To survive and thrive, BMW has decided it must massively broaden its appeal.

One of the latest arrivals to BMW's ever-growing stable is the 2014 3 Series Gran Turismo. The five-door hatchback is best thought of as a smaller version of the company's 5 Series Gran Turismo built on stretched 3 Series platform that, in the case of this test car, shares the running gear of the 328i xDrive sedan. On paper, the five-passenger vehicle checks all the proper boxes with regards to performance, utility and economy. But does this family-focused 3 Series still deliver driving dynamics that qualify it for the title of Ultimate Driving Machine? READ FULL REVIEW

Image Credit: Copyright 2014 Michael Harley / AOL

Ken Block puts stunt driving skills against Neymar Jr. in funny Footkhana video

Posted Apr 24th 2014 11:00AM

Footkhana

Whether you're going for speed or for show, professional driving is as much about working the pedals as it about man-handling the wheel and shifter. And nobody does it quite like Ken Block. But is his fancy footwork up to par with that of an international soccer star like Neymar?

That's what sponsor Castrol set out to find out with this latest video. Called Footkhana, it pits the Brazilian footballer against the American rally driver for a little round of friendly Gymkhana-style competition. It's not the first time we're seeing a car used on the soccer pitch – Top Gear had that covered years ago – but for the legions of sports fans who like their motorsports as much as they do their footie, it's a must-see. Check it out below.

News Source: Castrol via YouTube

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