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Articles on this Page
- 05/31/15--11:58: _Fiat Panda K-Way sp...
- 06/01/15--14:00: _2016 Vauxhall / Ope...
- 06/02/15--15:57: _Petrol-powered Golf...
- 06/03/15--14:22: _The Mitsuoka Roadst...
- 06/06/15--14:53: _All-new 2016 BMW X1...
- 06/07/15--09:19: _20th birthday editi...
- 06/08/15--10:49: _Aston Martin Le Man...
- 06/08/15--15:37: _Seven-seat Nissan e...
- 06/09/15--15:44: _Mopar ’15 Performan...
- 06/10/15--14:41: _Vespa 946 Emporio A...
- 06/11/15--14:51: _The 2016 Cadillac C...
- 06/12/15--15:30: _BMW Concept Path 22...
- 06/13/15--11:34: _2016 Volkswagen Cal...
- 06/14/15--15:18: _Celebration concept...
- 06/15/15--15:34: _2016 Honda CRF250R ...
- 06/15/15--15:40: _2016 Honda CRF450R ...
- 06/16/15--15:42: _2016 Holden Colorad...
- 06/17/15--14:51: _The Isuzu N-Series ...
- 06/19/15--14:47: _Flying Spur V8 Belu...
- 06/20/15--12:12: _Electric-powered Mo...
- 05/31/15--11:58: Fiat Panda K-Way special edition launched
- 06/01/15--14:00: 2016 Vauxhall / Opel Astra first view
- 06/02/15--15:57: Petrol-powered Golf BlueMotion TSI launched
- 06/03/15--14:22: The Mitsuoka Roadster is coming to the UK
- 06/06/15--14:53: All-new 2016 BMW X1 unveiled
- X1 sDrive20i: 189 bhp (141 kW / 192 PS); 280 Nm (206 lb/ft).
- X1 xDrive20i: 189 bhp (141 kW / 192 PS); 280 Nm (206 lb/ft).
- X1 xDrive25i: 228 bhp (170 kW / 231 PS); 350 Nm (258 lb/ft).
- X1 sDrive18d: 147 bhp (110 kW / 150 PS); 330 Nm (243 lb/ft).
- X1 xDrive20d: 187 bhp (140 kW / 190 PS); 400 Nm (295 lb/ft).
- X1 xDrive25d: 228 bhp (170 kW / 231 PS); 450 Nm (332 lb/ft).
- 06/07/15--09:19: 20th birthday edition Sprinter launched
- 06/08/15--10:49: Aston Martin Le Mans art car unveiled
- 06/08/15--15:37: Seven-seat Nissan e-NV200 arrives in the UK
- 06/09/15--15:44: Mopar ’15 Performance Kit for the Charger R/T
- 06/10/15--14:41: Vespa 946 Emporio Armani edition revealed
- 06/11/15--14:51: The 2016 Cadillac CTS-V arrives in Europe
- 06/12/15--15:30: BMW Concept Path 22 unveiled
- 06/13/15--11:34: 2016 Volkswagen California T6 launched
- 06/14/15--15:18: Celebration concept marks 60 years of Alpine
- 06/15/15--15:34: 2016 Honda CRF250R revealed
- 06/15/15--15:40: 2016 Honda CRF450R revealed
- 06/16/15--15:42: 2016 Holden Colorado Z71 launched
- 06/17/15--14:51: The Isuzu N-Series truck becomes a Chevrolet
- 06/19/15--14:47: Flying Spur V8 Beluga announced
- 06/20/15--12:12: Electric-powered Morgan EV3 revealed
Fiat has teamed up with rainproof clothing brand K-Way to produce a special version of the Panda.
On the outside, it’s distinguished by several K-Way logos and the use of a titanium finish for the wheel covers, roof bars and front trim piece.
To help create an individual look, buyers have a choice of black, blue, orange, red, white or yellow paintwork. All of those options can be combined with blue, orange, titanium or yellow shades for the door mirror caps and wheel centres.
Blue fabric and grey leatherette upholstery features inside, along with a blue dashboard and a contrasting silver instrument panel. Completing the specification are unique seatbelts and a pair of ‘Visibag’ high-visibility vest holders.
The Panda K-Way is available in Italy now and further European market launches will follow in due course.
2014 Fiat Panda Cross unveiled
2013 Fiat Panda 4x4
Although the current Astra is yet to celebrate its sixth birthday, Vauxhall and Opel have already unveiled the next-generation model.
From a styling perspective things haven’t moved on massively. However, an all-new architecture means less weight and more compact dimensions.
Indeed, this latest Astra is lighter by an average of 130 kg (286 lbs) across the range, something that should benefit economy, performance and handling.
The car’s length has shrunk by around 5.0 cm (2.0”) to 4.37 m (14’ 4”), while overall height is down by 2.6 cm (1.0”) to 1.46 m (4’ 9”). Conversely, interior space is actually better than before thanks to packaging improvements.
Full technical specs have still to be confirmed but, unsurprisingly, buyers are going to have a broad selection of engines to choose from.
With a growing resistance to diesel in some market segments, expect the advanced 103 bhp (77 kW / 105 PS) 1.0 litre three-cylinder and 143 bhp (107 kW / 145 PS) 1.4 litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol units to receive particular attention.
The 2016 Astra, which will be built at Vauxhall’s Ellesmere Port plant, is due to make its first public appearance at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September.
The three-door Astra is heading to Australia
2015 Vauxhall / Opel Corsavan unveiled
Vauxhall Viva / Opel Karl first view
Images © General Motors.
For many years diesel has been the accepted choice for car buyers seeking superior fuel economy and lower running costs. However, a growing number of high-efficiency petrol-powered models is now challenging that received wisdom.
The latest such offering is the new Volkswagen Golf BlueMotion TSI.
It's powered by a three-cylinder turbocharged EA211-series engine which displaces just 999 cc. An output of 114 bhp (85 kW / 115 PS) – plus a substantial 200 Nm (147 lb/ft) of peak torque – is sufficient for a 126 mph (204 km/h) top speed.
More importantly, the Golf BlueMotion TSI officially delivers 65.7 mpg (4.3 l/100km) on the combined cycle while emitting 99 g/km of carbon dioxide. Those figures apply to both the standard six-speed manual and optional seven-speed dual-clutch transmissions.
Other fuel-saving measures include stop-start and brake energy recovery systems. Furthermore, the aerodynamics have been improved thanks to a unique rear spoiler, a smoother front grille and a slightly reduced ride height.
In the UK, prices for the 3-door start from £19,740. The 5-door version sells for an additional £655.
Why buying a diesel car might not be wise
Volkswagen Golf GTE plug-in hybrid
Japanese coachbuilder Mitsuoka Motor Company is best known for taking modern cars and giving them a retro-English facelift. Its Viewt, for example, is essentially a Nissan Micra with imitation Jaguar Mark 2 front and rear ends grafted on.
Another of the firm’s models is the two-seat Himiko, which is about to be launched in the UK thanks to a distribution agreement with dealer group T W White and Sons. Here, it’ll simply be known as the Roadster.
Beneath the skin is a third-generation Mazda MX-5 Roadster Coupé, although that might not be immediately obvious. A completely restyled nose bears Jaguar XK150 influences, while a wheelbase stretch plus an extended rear overhang increase the overall length to 4,575 mm (15’ 0”).
Using the Mazda as a base vehicle certainly makes a lot of sense, because most of the MX-5’s complex components are retained. These include the stability and traction control systems, anti-lock brakes, airbags and power-operated retractable hardtop.
Mechanically things are standard Mazda too. Therefore power is provided by a 2.0 litre normally-aspirated engine, which delivers its output to the rear wheels via either six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmissions.
The Mitsuoka Roadster is priced from £53,800. To put that considerable figure into perspective, a similar amount would buy a Porsche Boxster GTS or a Mercedes-AMG SLK55.
2016 Mazda MX-5 UK specs and prices
MX-5 25th Anniversary Limited Edition
Ungainly proportions and clumsy details meant the original BMW X1 could never be described as handsome. Thankfully the second-generation model, which arrives at dealers in October, enjoys vastly more attractive styling.
In another major change, the new sDrive versions feature front-wheel drive instead of their predecessors’ rear-wheel drive. If that sounds like bad news, then the xDrive intelligent all-wheel drive system remains as an alternative.
A choice of five engines (now transversely mounted) is going to be available at launch. The line-up consists of two petrol and three diesel options, all of which are 2.0 litre turbocharged four-cylinder units.
Shortly after sales begin the sDrive18i and sDrive16d are set to join the range. Following a growing trend, both are powered by three-cylinder motors.
As well as a base specification, BMW will offer xLine, Sport Line and M Sport trim grades. Standard equipment on all includes satellite navigation with a 6.5” colour screen, an automatic tailgate, Servotronic speed-sensitive power steering and the Active Guard suite of collision warning devices.
Of course, buyers should expect to be tempted by plenty of extra-cost items. Among them are adaptive dampers, a sliding rear bench seat, active cruise control, a reversing camera and a panoramic glass sunroof.
Prices for the 2016 X1 have yet to be announced.
BMW X5 xDrive40e plug-in hybrid launched
BMW 2 Series Gran Tourer launched
BMW unveils a three-cylinder 2 Series Coupé
Twenty years ago Mercedes-Benz introduced its first-generation Sprinter van range. To mark the nameplate’s special anniversary, an exclusive Edition Sprinter model has been created.
Available in either panel van or Traveliner minibus guises, the Edition Sprinter is distinguished by metallic silver paintwork, body-colour bumpers and dark-tinted tail lights.
Also adding to the unique look are a set of black 16” alloy wheels, bi-xenon headlights and a chrome finish for the front grille. Furthermore, Traveliner versions gain rear privacy glass.
Production of the Edition Sprinter is going to be limited to 2,000 examples. It’ll be offered in nineteen European markets, but whether or not that includes the UK remains to be seen.
Vito becomes Metris for North America
2015 Mercedes-Benz Vito 4x4 introduced
2014 Sprinter Airstream Autobahn revealed
This weekend’s 2015 Le Mans 24 Hours race will see the #97 Aston Martin Vantage GTE wearing a uniquely striking livery.
Conceived by German artist Tobias Rehberger, it uses repetitive blocks of colour to give an illusion of movement.
Commenting on his creation, Rehberger said: “My design for the Aston Martin art car is rooted in my interest in distorted perception and related phenomena like auto moving patterns, optical effects, camouflage and visual confusion, which I have addressed in many works before.
“In this case, the design is based on a geometric optical effect pattern. Comparable to a fast object, a steady fixation on a point of the pattern is impossible.”
Any other competitors who get too close should expect to be dazzled!
Nissan’s retro livery for Le Mans 2015
2015 FIA WEC calendar confirmed
Nissan has confirmed that a seven-seat version of its electric-powered e-NV200 will be launched in the UK next month.
Customers are certainly going to have plenty of choice. For starters, a new more upmarket Evalia model line is joining the existing Combi range. Then there are two trim grades and the different charging methods to consider, giving a total of seven seven-seat variants.
That just leaves the decision to either purchase the battery pack outright or lease it. Both options take advantage of the government’s Plug-in Car Grant, which is currently worth up to £5,000.
|Seven-seat Nissan e-NV200 - UK on the road prices|
|Battery pack||Outright purchase||Flex leasing|
|Combi Acenta Rapid||£24,245||£21,075|
|Combi Acenta Rapid Plus||£24,900||£21,740|
|Combi Tekna Rapid||£26,080||£21,270|
|Combi Tekna Rapid Plus||£26,745||£21,940|
|Evalia Tekna Rapid||£26,595||£21,590|
|Evalia Tekna Rapid Plus||£27,260||£22,255|
|All prices are net of the Plug-in Car Grant.|
The Nissan e-NV200 has an NEDC range of 106 miles (170 kilometres).
Nissan creates the e-NV200 VIP Concept
Nissan NV200 Taxi for London
Mopar has introduced a limited edition Performance Kit for the 2015 Dodge Charger R/T.
Its main component is the Scat Pack Stage 1 upgrade. This consists of a cold-air intake, a high-flow oil filter, a powertrain control module and a Mopar exhaust system.
As a result, power from the R/T’s 5.7 litre Hemi V8 increases from 370 bhp (276 kW / 375 PS) to 388 bhp (289 kW / 393 PS). Peak torque meanwhile rises by 24 Nm (18 lb/ft) to 560 Nm (413 lb/ft).
A front strut brace, body-side graphics, Mopar-branded doorsill kick plates, bright pedal covers and a dashboard plaque are also included.
Available to order now from dealers, the Mopar ’15 Performance Kit has an MSRP of $3,550 in the United States. Just fifty units are going to be produced.
2015 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat unveiled
2015 Dodge Charger Pursuit launched
2015 Dodge Charger revealed
So you’ve got Armani clothes, Armani shoes and Armani sunglasses (some of which might actually be genuine). Well now you can add an Emporio Armani scooter to your collection.
Based on the 125 cc Vespa 946, it features matte grey-green paintwork, two-tone 12” wheels, a special finish for the metallic parts and a brown leather saddle.
The resultant look is certainly classy. Even the requisite Armani branding manages to be reasonably subtle.
Vespa says the 946 Emporio Armani edition is going to be offered “in the world’s most important cities”. Each will be individually numbered.
2014 Vespa GTS and GTS Super launched
Vespa Primavera unveiled
Cadillac’s European dealers are now accepting orders for the 2016 CTS-V.
To recap, the rear-wheel drive CTS-V features an all-aluminium supercharged 6.2 litre V8 engine that’s mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission.
An output of 640 bhp (477 kW / 648 PS) makes it the most powerful car in Cadillac’s history. Peak torque meanwhile is 855 Nm (630 lb/ft).
Those figures translate into an impressive 0-62 mph (100 km/h) time of just 3.7 seconds. By comparison, the 552 bhp (412 kW / 560 PS) BMW M5 and 550 bhp (410 kW / 557 PS) Mercedes-AMG E63 achieve the same benchmark in 4.3 and 4.2 seconds respectively.
Cadillac is quoting a 199 mph (320 km/h) top speed. That’s slightly odd, because a lot of fuss was made about the CTS-V’s ability to hit a nice round 200 mph (322 km/h) when it was first unveiled in the United States.
Of course, miles per hour means little in most markets on this side of the Atlantic. And anyway, does such a small discrepancy matter when the aforementioned German rivals are both electronically limited to 155 mph (250 km/h)?
European deliveries of the CTS-V are due to begin this autumn. In Germany, prices start from €98,500.
2016 Cadillac CT6 first view
2016 Cadillac CTS-V first view
2016 Cadillac ATS-V unveiled
Images © General Motors.
Attaching a surfboard carrier to the side of a motorcycle is a pretty daft idea. Lopsided balance, weird handling and a susceptibility to crosswinds would be just some the pitfalls.
Nevertheless, BMW has added such an accoutrement to its Concept Path 22, which is currently on display at the Wheels and Waves Festival in Biarritz.
The result seems like it would be a real handful to ride. But ignore the (thankfully detachable) carrier, because what remains is a bike that’s worthy of attention.
Based on the R nineT, Concept Path 22 provides a foretaste of how a BMW scrambler might look. Its pared-back specification includes a high-mounted stainless steel Akrapovic exhaust, longer-travel suspension and bespoke five-spoke alloy wheels shod with knobbly tyres.
A MotoGadget instrument cluster, various unique parts from Roland Sands Design, a protective headlight grille and a leather-covered solo saddle are also fitted.
Completing the transformation are bodywork graphics by Nico Sclater (AKA Ornamental Conifer). Oh, and Californian firm Dyer Brand even designed a couple of special surfboards for that carrier.
BMW builds a bagger
BMW Concept Roadster revealed
BMW R nineT revealed
Following the sixth-generation Transporter’s unveiling in April, Volkswagen has introduced an updated California camper van. In Germany it’s being offered in three versions.
The California Beach features a manual elevating roof, window blinds and up to seven seats. Also part of the standard specification are a picnic table and a pair of folding chairs which are stored in the side door and tailgate respectively.
For those wanting more facilities there’s the five-seat California Coast. It gains a traditional side-mounted furniture unit that incorporates a two-burner gas stove, a stainless steel sink and a 42-litre cool box.
Topping the range is the California Ocean. As well as a powered elevating roof, this variant boasts double glazing and auxiliary heating to help make year-round camping more of a possibility.
German prices start from €41,429.85. That amount buys a California Beach powered by an 83 bhp (62 kW / 84 PS) 2.0 litre diesel engine.
At the other end of the cost spectrum, €68,371.45 is needed for a 201 bhp (150 kW / 204 PS) California Ocean equipped with a six-speed manual transmission and the 4Motion all-wheel drive system.
2016 Volkswagen Transporter T6 first view
Mercedes reveals the Marco Polo camper van
There's still considerable equity in the Alpine brand, even if owner Renault has basically neglected it for the past two decades.
So does the new Celebration concept signal a proper revival for the French marque?
Officially the compact coupé – which was unveiled just before this weekend's Le Mans 24 Hours race – has been created to celebrate Alpine's 60th birthday. However, Renault is probably gauging public opinion very carefully to help determine whether a production version should follow.
Its attractive styling is clearly influenced by the A108 and A110 that were built from the late 1950s until the 1970s. Like those models the 2015 concept is rear-engined, meaning an expensive standalone platform would be required.
Doubtless sales volumes will be low, though. That then makes setting an acceptable price while achieving profitability a difficult balancing act. Consequently a business case might be hard to justify, regardless of the Celebration's reception.
A desire for economies of scale is exactly why Alpine established a joint venture with Caterham to manufacture sports cars in 2012. Unfortunately that partnership was dissolved last year, therefore any imminent Celebration-based project is going to have to be a solo effort.
Renaultsport R.S. 01 makes its track debut
Honda has announced a series of upgrades for its CRF250R motocross bike.
The changes start with the four-stroke, liquid-cooled, 249 cc single-cylinder engine. Improvements include an extra intake duct for the airbox, a revised cylinder head, a reshaped con-rod, a lighter piston and recalibrated fuel injection.
As a result, power rises from 37.5 bhp (28.0 kW / 38.0 PS) to 39.4 bhp (29.4 kW / 39.9 PS). Peak torque meanwhile is up by 0.6 Nm (0.4 lb/ft) to 27.1 Nm (19.9 lb/ft).
Another component that has received attention is the Showa Separate Front Function with Triple Air Chamber fork, which was first used on the 2015 model. For 2016 it gains slightly longer top tubes plus modified internals to reduce friction.
At the rear, the Showa shock unit now features a stiffer spring rate and increased compression damping.
The CRF250R’s bodywork and aluminium twin-tube frame remain unaltered.
2016 Honda CRF450R revealed
Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin (partly) revealed
2015 Honda CRF250R announced
An enhanced suspension set-up spearheads the amendments that Honda is making to its CRF450R motocross bike for 2016.
Better handling and improved stability are promised thanks to a revised KYB Pneumatic Spring Fork. The unit is longer and more rigid than before, plus it gains firmer damping on both compression and rebound.
To complement the front-end updates, the rear KYB shock now has more rebound damping but marginally less compression.
As a result of those modifications the CRF450R’s steering geometry, wheelbase and ground clearance have all been altered very slightly.
Just about everything else is carried over unchanged from the 2015 model, though. That means power still comes from a liquid-cooled, fuel-injected, four-stroke, 449 cc single-cylinder engine that develops 53.0 bhp (39.5 kW / 53.7 PS).
2016 Honda CRF250R revealed
Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin (partly) revealed
2015 Honda CRF450R unveiled
Holden’s Colorado pick-up is getting a new range-topping trim grade. Based on the existing LTZ 4x4 Crew Cab model, it borrows the Z71 moniker from fellow GM brand Chevrolet.
Identifying features include a front nudge bar, roof rails, 18” gunmetal-coloured alloy wheels, a ‘sailplane’ mounted on the cargo box and a soft tonneau cover.
A large bonnet graphic complements the five available paint shades, plus there’s a black finish for the door mirror caps, side rubbing strips and B-pillars.
Inside, the extra specification comprises leather upholstery and heated front seats.
Deliveries of the Colorado Z71 are due to begin next month.
2015 Colorado Z71 Trail Boss edition unveiled
2015 Holden Colorado and Colorado 7
Images © General Motors.
Chevrolet has confirmed that it’s going to offer a rebadged version of the Isuzu N-Series medium-duty truck across North America.
Available in regular or crew cab guises, the Low Cab Forward range will consist of six models. Overall lengths vary from 5,092 mm (200.5”) to 7,708 mm (303.5”).
A selection of three engines should also help to give operators sufficient variety. The two diesel units are provided by Isuzu, but GM supplies the V8 option.
|3.0 litre I4
(111 kW / 152 PS)
|5.2 litre I4
(160 kW / 218 PS)
|6.0 litre V8
(221 kW / 301 PS)
Deliveries of Chevrolet’s Low Cab Forward series are due to begin in 2016.
2015 Silverado HD Custom Sport editions
Silverado 1500 WT Black Out edition launched
City Express van is a re-branded NV200
Images © General Motors.
Bentley is adding an extra trim grade to the Flying Spur V8 saloon range. Named Beluga, it gains a more purposeful appearance thanks to a few cosmetic changes.
On the outside these include a gloss black radiator matrix plus a body-coloured bar across the lower air intakes. Furthermore, 20” two-tone machined alloy wheels are fitted, but they're swapped for 21” six-spoke 'Extrovert' rims if the optional Mulliner Driving Specification package is ordered.
The interior meanwhile features piano black veneer, contrast stitching for the upholstery and a set of deep-pile floor mats.
Dealers around the globe are accepting reservations for the Flying Spur V8 Beluga now. The first deliveries are due in the autumn.
Bentley Mulsanne Speed ‘Blue Train’ edition
2015 Bentley Mulsanne Speed launched
This month’s Goodwood Festival of Speed will see the debut of a zero-emissions Morgan 3 Wheeler.
Called the EV3, it’s currently just a prototype. However, development is ongoing and a production version is expected to arrive towards the end of 2016.
Power is provided by a 100 bhp (75 kW / 101 PS) electric motor. Performance figures have yet to be confirmed, but that seems like a very decent output for a car that weighs just 450 kg (992 lbs).
Morgan says the EV3’s range should be around 150 miles (240 kilometres).
Morgan 3 Wheeler 1000th Edition
2014 Morgan 3 Wheeler announced