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Subaru launches STI-tuned Forester tS in Japan

  • Subaru launches STI-tuned Forester tS in Japan
  • Hottest Selling Cars in Canada 2014
  • Such Sweet Sorrow: 2015 Cadillac CTS-V gets an Irish wake
  • Watch Razor Crazy Carts turn office space into hilarious racetrack

Autoblog

Watch Razor Crazy Carts turn office space into hilarious racetrack

Posted Nov 25th 2014 6:00PM

XCAR Crazy Cart video

Working here at Autoblog Canada is a lot of fun. Working at Xcar, though, seems like it's somehow even better, if this video above is any indication of a typical day's work.

Xcar's Alex Goy and Drew Stearne have apparently been wreaking havoc in their UK offices with their avid use of Razor's hoontastic Crazy Cart. An irate HR manager reached out to the two, asking them to please move their antics back to the basement and spare the office's walls of further collisions.

Naturally, the best (and quickest) way for the pair to move the single-wheeled go carts downstairs was to tear through the office one last time. The results are just as sensational as you might expect. Hit the jump to watch the incredible footage of these office-racing pranksters in action. Oh, and if you want to get a Razor Crazy Cart of your very own, they happen to be on sale right now too :P

News Source: XCAR via YouTube

Lincoln dons the Black Label

Posted Nov 23rd 2014 8:00AM

Custom Program Launches In December On MKZ, MKC

2015 Lincoln MKZ Black Label

"We're really trying to simplify for the customer on their terms." – Paul Bucek

Lincoln is launching a Black Label service and customization program in December at 32 dealerships across the country in a bid to attract new and more upscale customers.

The Black Label program will be available on the MKC crossover and the MKZ sedan for US$5,995 (no word on Canadian availability yet) on top of the purchase price. It includes custom design themes – with colours and materials only available through Black Label – plus free routine service and car washes for four years or 50,000 miles (80,000 km). It will be offered through dealerships in California, Michigan, Texas, New York, New Jersey and Florida.

Black Label was originally previewed during the week of the 2013 Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance, and Lincoln said it would take more than a year to get the program launched. Though that seemed like a lengthy lead time, Lincoln said it had to upgrade dealerships, train employees and has added more choices to the program.

News Source: Lincoln

Land Rover, Toyota big winners in ALG top resale value awards

Posted Nov 21st 2014 5:00PM

2015 Land Rover Range Rover Sport SVR

"Residual value is important for automakers and consumers because it's a complete indicator of the vehicle's future value." – Larry Dominique

Toyota and Land Rover took home the top brand honors in ALG's 2015 Residual Value Awards, which will be presented this week at the Los Angeles Auto Show.

Toyota won in the mainstream brand category, while Land Rover was honored in the luxury segment. In addition to brands, ALG recognized vehicles in individual segments, and notable winners included the Mazda3 for compact car, Subaru Legacy for midsize car and Dodge Charger for fullsize car. The Subaru WRX won in the sportscar category, while the Toyota Tundra earned top honors in the fullsize truck segment.

"Residual value is important for automakers and consumers because it's a complete indicator of the vehicle's future value, accounting for quality, durability and brand desirability, among other factors," said Larry Dominique, president of ALG and executive vice president of ALG-parent, TrueCar. "The award recipients demonstrate strong forecasted returns on investments for their owners."

There were eight first-time winners this year, including the Charger, WRX, Toyota Prius V and Audi TT. Toyota had the most model winners with six.

ALG passed out 26 awards – two for brands and 24 for models – based on vehicles that are expected to retain the best percentage of their MSRP after three years. This was the 15th iteration of the awards, which are given out annually, and you're welcome to read more in the press release below.

News Source: ALG

Image Credit: Land Rover

Audi A7 Sportback H-Tron Quattro packs plug-in hydrogen powertrain

Posted Nov 21st 2014 1:30PM

The Name Is Almost As Complicated As The Technology

Audi A7 H-Tron

If you think a plug-in diesel hybrid is an expensive proposition, just wait until you hear details about the just-revealed Audi A7 Sportback H-Tron Quattro. The "H" in H-Tron, as you might guess, stands for hydrogen, so say hello to a new concept that combines a plug-in battery system with a hydrogen fuel cell. Yeah, exactly.

Let's start with the numbers. On the plug-in side, the new H-Tron has an 8.8-kWh lithium-ion battery that can power the car for up to 31 miles (50 km) on battery power. With electric motors on both axles – it's a Quattro, after all, but a through-the-road hybrid with electronic torque distribution management – the A7 H-Tron uses a hydrogen fuel cell and four (!) H2 tanks to offer about 62 miles per gallon (3.8L/100km) equivalent. Audi says the overall fuel cell stack efficiency is "as high as 60 per cent" while the electric motors operate at 95 per cent efficiency.

Efficiently turning all of that electricity into movement means the A7 Sportback H-Tron Quattro has a total power output of 398.3 pound-feet of torque. The 4,299-pound (1,950-kilogram) concept can allegedly go from 0-100 km/h (0-62 miles per hour) in 7.9 seconds and has a top speed of 180 km/h (112 mph). The car's total range is 500 kilometres (311 miles).

The A7 H-Tron is not the first plug-in hydrogen vehicle concept. That title goes to the Ford HySeries Edge. Mazda also considered putting a hydrogen range extender in the Mazda5 plug-in van.

News Source: Audi

Image Credit: Live photos copyright 2014 Drew Phillips / AOL

2015 Maserati Ghibli gets the lightest of updates [w/video]

Posted Nov 20th 2014 5:45PM

2015 Maserati Ghibli

Maserati continued its centennial celebration this week with a lightly updated version of the 2015 Ghibli at the Los Angeles Auto Show.

The sedan is enhanced with navigation and Bluetooth features, which are now standard. Reinforcing that this is a light refresh, Maserati gave the brake calipers a new finish, and contrasted stitching is also added on the Ghibli and Ghibli SQ4 models.

Maserati is also throwing in a free three-month "all-access" subscription to SiriusXM satellite radio for the Ghibli, Quattroporte and GranTurismo.

The Ghibli shared space in Los Angeles with the Alfieri concept that debuted at the 2014 Geneva Motor Show, the GranTurismo MC Centennial edition and the updated Quattroporte GTS.

Though Maserati has had an understated presence in LA, it's had a strong year in North America and has already posted its best-ever sales tally.

2016 Jaguar F-Type prowls the floor with new manual and AWD options

Posted Nov 20th 2014 3:45PM

2016 Jaguar F-Type

The Jaguar F-Type has become an instant enthusiast favorite for its alluring design, powerful, sonorous engines and rewarding handling. In short, it's a worthy successor to the iconic mid-century E-Type. But Jaguar hasn't been sitting idly, and it's continuing to refine and enhance the F-Type with subtle yet significant enhancements, including a bunch that are debuting this week at the Los Angeles Auto Show.

The 2016 model year brings with it all-wheel drive, which will be standard on 550-horsepower F-Type R models. AWD will be optional on mid-level F-Type S models, which run the 380-hp V6. The system sends all of the supercharged engine's torque to the rear axle in default mode, but it can also be split with up to 50 per cent going to the front axle when needed. Jaguar has even added subtle visual differentiators to the the AWD models, fitting them with body-colored sills and a new hood design. The penalty? the AWD system adds about 176 pounds (79 kilograms) to the curb weight.

The F-Type also gets an available six-speed manual transmission for 2016 on V6 variants with rear-wheel drive. While obviously adding a more interactive driving character, the close-ratio manual is about 22 pounds (10 kilograms) lighter than the automatic gearbox. Jaguar has also given all F-Type models electric power steering, using a stiffer steering shaft to maintain the hydraulic setup's connected feel with the road.

The 2016 models will be available in the spring, and pricing will be announced closer to launch.

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News Source: Jaguar

Image Credit: Live photos copyright 2014 Drew Phillips / AOL

2015 Chrysler 300 swaggers into LA Auto Show [w/video]

Posted Nov 20th 2014 2:15PM

2015 Chrysler 300

The Chrysler 300 has always exuded a certain brashness, but its chip-on-its-shoulder styling seemed to mellow a bit after its 2011 redesign. Now, the bad boy of the premium sedan segment is getting some of its angry attitude back for 2015, and with the refreshed model debuting here at the Los Angeles Auto Show.

The grille is larger, the fascia is updated and the lights are redesigned. That doesn't seem like much, but when taken collectively, they give the car a more menacing glare. The inside is freshened with a new seven-inch in-cluster display, better-quality materials and an updated suite of available Uconnect features, and there's a bevy of new active safety features available, too.

The engine line continues with the 3.6-litre V6 and the 5.7-litre V8, though they are now both paired with Chrysler's eight-speed automatic. The sedan also received a Sport mode button, which changes the tuning for the steering, engine and transmission, while providing a rear bias for all-wheel drive models. Pricing starts at $34,595, just as it did for the 2014 model.

The lineup also gets a new Platinum model with special wood, chrome and leather finishings, though the company also has said it will discontinue the 300's high-performance SRT variant for in North America.

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News Source: Chrysler via YouTube

Image Credit: Live photos copyright 2014 Drew Phillips / AOL

Chevy Chaparral 2X Vision Gran Turismo concept blends the past and the future

Posted Nov 19th 2014 6:00PM



The Chevrolet Chaparral 2X Vision Gran Turismo is the rare concept car that salutes a seminal moment in history, yet also borders on science fiction.

Revealed Wednesday at the Los Angeles Auto Show, the concept uses the name of one of Chevy's historic racing partnerships, with Chaparral Racing, which dates to the 1960s. Chaparrals raced successfully at a range of levels, including IndyCar, Trans-Am and SCCA competition.

But the history ends there, as the concept's main purpose is as a racecar in a downloadable update for the PlayStation 3 game Gran Turismo 6.

Reinforcing the forward-looking feel, the Chaparral 2X Vision Gran Turismo concept uses a 671-kilowatt laser propelled by lithium-ion batteries and an air-powered generator to make up to 900 brake horsepower of thrust. This allows the concept to achieve a speed of 240 miles per hour (386 km/h), while sprinting to 60 mph (96 km/h) in 1.5 seconds in the video game.

Furthering the fantasy element, the driver is also supposed to lay in a face-down prone position with arms and legs splayed out toward the 17-inch wheels, and the instruments are projected onto the driver's helmet visor.

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"Think of it as adapting a wing suit to a racing car, where the driver's movements control certain aspects of the aero package," Frank Saucedo, who oversaw the team that worked on the concept, said in a statement.

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News Source: Chevrolet

2016 BMW X6 M brings the power at LA Auto Show

Posted Nov 19th 2014 3:45PM

2016 BMW X6 M

BMW tore the cover off the second generation 2016 X6 M Wednesday at the Los Angeles Auto Show.

BMW tuned the 4.4-litre twin-turbo V8 to push out 567 horsepower, up from the last model's 555 hp. Torque also leaps to 553 pound feet, compared with the previous output of 500 lb-ft. The V8 is paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission, which swaps in for the old six-speed. This potent powertrain allows the crossover to hit 60 miles per hour (96 km/h) in about four seconds.

The X6, which features slightly more dramatic styling and an angled rear roofline, debuted alongside the more conventionally styled 2016 BMW X5 M at the LA show.

Crossover and performance buyers alike will enjoy the xDrive all-wheel-drive system, which allows 100 per cent of the power to be distributed to the front or rear axles. The M treatment is evident in the exterior design, which features flared wheel arches, 21-inch wheels, prominent air intakes in front and quad exhaust pipes in rear. The X6 M starts at US$103,050 when it arrives in dealers next year.

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News Source: BMW

Image Credit: Live photos copyright 2014 Drew Phillips / AOL

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