Automobile Magazine http://www.automobilemag.com No Boring Cars! | Reviews, Auto Shows, Lifestyle Mon, 16 Jan 2017 22:00:37 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.5.4 207-Horsepower Toyota Yaris Geneva Bound http://www.automobilemag.com/news/high-performance-toyota-yaris-2017-geneva-auto-show/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/high-performance-toyota-yaris-2017-geneva-auto-show/#respond Mon, 16 Jan 2017 22:00:01 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=1096760 Heads up, hot-hatch fans. The segment is about to grow thanks to a new high-performance Yaris variant that Toyota will debut at the 2017 Geneva auto show in March. Based on the two-door hatchback body style of the Yaris, the new model sports a more powerful engine producing more than 207 horsepower — almost double the current...

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Heads up, hot-hatch fans. The segment is about to grow thanks to a new high-performance Yaris variant that Toyota will debut at the 2017 Geneva auto show in March. Based on the two-door hatchback body style of the Yaris, the new model sports a more powerful engine producing more than 207 horsepower — almost double the current U.S.-spec Yaris’ 106 hp.

Toyota is trying to establish a link between the WRC Yaris rally car and the Yaris model lineup with this new high-performance model. But updates won’t be limited to just this unnamed Yaris hot hatch. According to Toyota of Europe, “The entire Yaris lineup will benefit from the similar design modifications, with a new front face, a new rear style, and a modernized interior.” Additionally, Toyota claims that various technical improvements will increase the overall comfort and handling of the standard subcompact hatchback. This should make Toyota’s most-affordable model more enticing to potential buyers.

new yaris rear three quarter crop

After a 17-year absence from the World Rally Championship, the Yaris WRC rally car will debut at the Monte Carlo Rally on January 19 equipped with a 1.6-liter turbocharged I-4 engine that makes 375 hp and 313 lb-ft of torque. The new Yaris hot hatch doesn’t make nearly that much, but if its curb weight is close to the roughly 2,300 pounds of the standard U.S.-spec Yaris its 207 hp should be more than enough. Unfortunately, Toyota is keeping technical details like engine size and curb weight close to its chest for now. We’ll find out when the model debuts in Geneva.

Besides a limited-release TRD-tuned RS model that was sold in Japan in the early 2000s, the Yaris line has never had a high-performance offering before. With an all-new next-gen Yaris based on the modular TNGA platform on the horizon, this special model could serve as a swan song for the current Yaris.

Sadly, the likelihood of a Yaris hot hatch reaching our shores isn’t good. Should Toyota bring this rally-inspired subcompact to the U.S.? Let us know.

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Honda Civic Type R Black Edition is Special Sendoff http://www.automobilemag.com/news/honda-civic-type-r-black-edition-marks-end-current-generation/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/honda-civic-type-r-black-edition-marks-end-current-generation/#respond Mon, 16 Jan 2017 17:00:49 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=1096999 Honda has finished production on the current-generation Civic Type R, and the last 100 copies to come off the line are special-edition models. The Honda Civic Type R Black Edition is headed to dealerships in the U.K. looking particularly sharp. Like its name suggests, the Black Edition Type R features a black paint job along...

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Honda has finished production on the current-generation Civic Type R, and the last 100 copies to come off the line are special-edition models. The Honda Civic Type R Black Edition is headed to dealerships in the U.K. looking particularly sharp.

Like its name suggests, the Black Edition Type R features a black paint job along with prominent red accents on the front fascia and wheels. It also gets unique red rear wing end plates on the spoiler. The car’s red-and-black theme is particularly striking inside the cabin.

Honda Civic Type R Black Edition Steering Wheel

European customers looking for the Black Edition should act soon because Honda expects to sell out of the models quickly. Priced at £32,300, or roughly $39,300 at today’s rates, the Black Edition costs the same as the top-trim Civic Type R GT.

The outgoing Civic Type R boasts a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine producing 306 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque. The next-gen model coming to our shores is also likely to get a 2.0-liter turbo engine. In September, Honda debuted a prototype that looks quite promising.

A final version is set to be unveiled later this year. When it goes into production, the Type R will once again be built at Honda’s manufacturing plant in Swindon, U.K., where the 10th-generation Civic hatchback is built.

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How Many Sports Cars Did We Buy Last Year? http://www.automobilemag.com/news/no-boring-car-sales/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/no-boring-car-sales/#respond Mon, 16 Jan 2017 12:05:53 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=1097284 Automobile Magazine founder David E. Davis, Jr., once said that the absolute number of car enthusiasts in the world is the same today as it was in 1905. Or something like that; I don’t know whether that quote is from 1986 or ’99. I’m not sure he said “1905” or “1912” or somewhere in-between. But...

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Automobile Magazine founder David E. Davis, Jr., once said that the absolute number of car enthusiasts in the world is the same today as it was in 1905. Or something like that; I don’t know whether that quote is from 1986 or ’99. I’m not sure he said “1905” or “1912” or somewhere in-between.

But he knew what he was talking about. Whatever our absolute number, we’ve become a smaller minority as U.S. car sales hit record numbers, and automakers try to figure out how to get customers behind the wheel without making them actually drive. Calendar year 2016 sales of 17,539,052, according to Automotive News, topped the previous record set in CY15 by 56,211.

The difference between total CY15 and CY16 sales is 4,181 units greater than all of Mini’s sales in the U.S. last year.

Sports cars, however you define that term, didn’t help. Ford infamously lost significant Mustang sales here last year. Though the Blue Oval crowed about “record” sales in Western Europe, it wouldn’t take much to achieve that. Still, Ford sold more than 100,000 Mustangs in the U.S., and together, the three “pony cars” totaled 243,080 sales last year, down 8.7 percent from CY15.

Sporty sport/utility vehicles are probably grabbing sales from traditional sports cars, sport coupes, and sport sedans. Jaguar nearly doubled CY15 sales by selling 10,016 of its new F-Pace SUVs, which quickly became its bestseller here last year, despite having a higher sticker price than Jaguar’s other new car, the XE compact sedan. Jaguar F-Pace sales even outperformed Mazda MX-5 Miata sales in the U.S., by 551 units.

david e davis jr behind his desk

Early this month, I wrote about U.S. car sales in 2016, as I do after every year just ended. That annual column, and its monthly counterparts, violates our “No Boring Cars” dictum first coined by David E. Davis, Jr. That’s because I call out the volume models, the cars, trucks and SUVs that pay the bills at the major automakers; the vehicles that give them the profit margins to help fund the specialty models you, I, and a good portion of their engineers, designers and managers like to drive. Our cars — and yes, they are cars, not sporty sport/utilities — are known as noise in the system, volume-wise.

So here’s a little roundup of the sales for the models we like. This includes the sports cars, yes, of course, and the sport coupes and sport sedans. But also, the electric and electrified cars, which have their own enthusiast following, and a few select sporty SUVs and interesting sedans just to give perspective on how well they are selling compared with performance cars. I’m going to skip some low-volume, lame duck models such as the Honda CR-Z, Kia K900, and Volkswagen Eos.

While my regular monthly columns are compiled from sales reports released by the automakers, this column relies on Automotive News’ sales chart published the first week of January. Before you look at the numbers, some perspective: Ford sold 820,799 F-Series last year (the big-volume F-150, plus the Super-Duty F-Series models). Toyota sold 388,618 Camrys in CY16, and to include a model that’s interesting in its own right and is still available with a manual transmission, Honda sold 366,927 Civics, which was its bestseller last year. [Manual take rate for such models typically run between 2 percent and 5 percent, so that’s maybe 7,300 to 18,350 Civic sticks.] This year, Honda’s bestseller is very likely to be the new CR-V.

Although Toyota Prius sales dropped 26.1 percent as sub-models were dropped from the lineup, its total still was a healthy 136,632. Although the Kia Soul looks like a niche model, it remains the brand’s bestseller, at 145,768 sold, off 0.9 percent.

2017 Mazda MX 5 Miata Arctic rear three quarter 2018 Audi TT RS vs 2017 Porsche Cayman S 01 Ferrari J50 Front Three Quarter 2017 Acura NSX top view 05

*Mazda Miata: 9,465, up 10.2 percent. Fiat 124 Spider: New model, 2,475 sold, for 11,940 total on the ND Miata platform.

*Toyota 86/Scion FR-S: 7,457, off 29 percent. Subaru BRZ: 4,141, off 21.8 percent, for 11,598 total on the Toyota/Subaru RWD sports car platform.

*BMW X6: 7,117 off 10 percent.

*Porsche Boxster/Cayman: 6,260, off 26.8 percent.

*Porsche Macan: 19,332, up 42.9 percent.

*Porsche Cars: 19,565, off 10 percent.

*Porsche SUVs: 34,715, up 15.7 percent.

*BMW 2 Series: 15,519, up 19.2 percent.

*Audi A5/S5: 8,354, off 35.4 percent. Allroad: 2,300, off 18.4 percent.

*Audi TT: 3,044, up 160.8 percent. R8: 736, up 48.7 percent.

*Chevrolet Corvette: 29,995, off 10 percent. Chevy SS: 3,013, off 4.1 percent.

*Chevrolet Volt: 24,739, up 60.7 percent. Chevy Bolt: 579 (for a total of 25,318 V/Bolts).

*Tesla Model S: 24,000, off 4.8 percent. Tesla Model X: 2,725, up 1,551 percent. Tesla’s total was 26,725, outselling V/Bolt by 1,407.

*Hyundai Veloster: 30,053, up 24 percent.

*Ford C-Max: 19,834, off 8.9 percent.

*BMW i3: 7,625, off 30.8 percent. BMW i8: 1,594, off 29.6 percent. Total: 9,219.

*Rolls-Royce (all models): 1,224, up 3.9 percent.

*Ferrari (all models): 2,460, up 20 percent.

*Bentley Continental GT: 1,144, off 32.7 percent.

*Bentley Bentayga: 884 (new).

*Lamborghini (all models): 1,032, up 2.3 percent.

*Alfa Romeo 4c: 480, off 27.2 percent. Alfa Romeo Giulia: 36 (new).

*Chrysler 300: 53,241, up 0.4 percent, and to end production this year.

*Dodge Viper: 630, off 8.7 percent, in its last year of production.

*Maserati Ghibli: 7,100, off 10.4 percent. Gran Turismo: 1,249, off 9 percent.

*Maserati Quattroporte: 2,268, off 5.4 percent. Levante: 1,917 (new).

*Buick Cascada: 7,153 (new).

*Acura NSX: 269 (new).

*Kia K900: 834, off 67 percent.

*Jaguar F-Type: 4,069, off 12.1 percent.

*Mercedes-AMG GT: 1,227, off 3.9 percent.

*Mercedes-Benz SL: 3,722, off 8.3 percent. SLK: 3,397, off 18.8 percent.

*Mercedes-Benz G-Class: 3,950, up 9.2 percent.

*Nissan 370Z: 5,913, off 20.1 percent. GT-R: 698, off 36.8 percent.

*Nissan Juke: 19,577, off 27.8 percent. Leaf: 14,006, off 18.9 percent.

*Mitsubishi i-MiEV: 94, off 18.3 percent.

*Subaru WRX/STI: 33,279, off 1.3 percent.

*Lexus RC: 11,165, off 24.5 percent. CT: 8,903, off 60.7 percent.

*Toyota Mirai: 1,034, up 1,336.1 percent.

2017 Bentley Bentayga front three quarter in motion 02

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12 Things You Didn’t Know About the 2018 Kia Stinger http://www.automobilemag.com/news/12-things-didnt-know-2018-kia-stinger/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/12-things-didnt-know-2018-kia-stinger/#respond Mon, 16 Jan 2017 10:00:19 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=1097213 While most of the buzz at the 2017 Detroit auto show centered on new versions hugely important consumer cars like the Toyota Camry and Honda Odyssey, the car we most wanted to drive right out of Cobo Center came from an unexpected brand – Kia. The 2018 Kia Stinger sedan is the Korean automaker’s first...

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While most of the buzz at the 2017 Detroit auto show centered on new versions hugely important consumer cars like the Toyota Camry and Honda Odyssey, the car we most wanted to drive right out of Cobo Center came from an unexpected brand – Kia. The 2018 Kia Stinger sedan is the Korean automaker’s first effort at a true performance car. Kia officials made it clear that the Stinger is more Gran Turismo than super sports sedan, but hopes are high that the Kia Stinger, which was tuned at the famed Nürburgring, will impress enthusiasts.

At the show, we walked around the 2018 Stinger with Kia Motors America’s VP of product planning, Orth Hedrick, and learned several interesting new details about the car, which will consist of the base Stinger powered by a 2.0-liter turbo with 255 horsepower and the Stinger GT, packing the brand’s twin-turbo 3.3-liter V-6 with 365 horsepower underhood.

“This is a first time we’ve had a car like this in the lineup, ever,” said the affable Hedrick. “So we’re super excited about this. It started with the original concept, the GT, from 2011, and the impetus of that, I won’t use the word genesis, the impetus on that was really a dream from the designer [Gregory Guillaume, Kia Europe’s chief designer], which is why we had him on stage presenting it.”

Here is what we learned from our time chatting with Hedrick:

2018 Kia Stinger GT front end1. The wheelbase informed a lot of Kia’s decision making with the car. “Its 114 inch wheelbase [114.4 to be precise] is longer than anything else in the markets that it’s up against. The A4, the A5, even the GS 350, so the benefit there was, you get a lot bigger backseat,” said Hedrick. “The tradeoff is, you can’t twist, turn, and move like a 3 Series, or the ATS. And that was a deliberate tradeoff. I think for us, it was important, really, to be true to what the concept of the vehicle was. It’s not to be a 3 Series, it’s to be a GT.”

2. Out at the Nürburgring, the Stinger’s pro drivers were looking to communicate specific attributes to the engineers that are more in line with a GT car. “They were looking for specific things like high speed stability, being able to track a line, is it balanced when you go over a negative radius? Does the car kind of offset, and does it feel heavy? A lot of the work is actually done digitally, before the car was even put together,” said Hedrick.

3. Weight distribution was a key focus, as was the powertrain placement. “We were trying to get as much as possible, the center of gravity down low, and in the middle of the car so we get close to 50/50. So that drove decisions, for instance, they did a lot of work making sure the engine is as low as possible and towards the middle of the car as possible,” said Hedrick.

4. The Stinger is built on the same basic platform as its K900 stablemate, but with a key difference. The mid FR platform, it’s the modular platform we use it across the board for K900, our sisters [Hyundai/Genesis] it for their two big FR cars. But the front and dash, forward, the engine room box is completely different,” Hedrick said. “It’s a little bit smaller in the front, it’s a little bit lighter, so that helped with the weight distribution.”

5. No, the Stinger’s hood vents aren’t functional (surprise, they’re a design flourish), but there is some functional design at the front of the car. “There’s an air curtain [at the edge of each side of the lower fascia]. And what that does is, when air comes around it creates a turbulence, a low pressure area [around the front wheels]. This helps create a sheet and it breaks that low pressure, and it just helps the aerodynamics a little bit. It stops that turbulence that happens along the side of the car,” Hedrick said.

6. While the hood vents aren’t functional, there is a “floating hood” on the Stinger. “The other big discussion point was using, they call it an island hood, it’s the term that R&D groups call it, I think everybody else calls it a floating hood,” said Hedrick. “Typically, we have a cut line that goes across just behind the fascia, and it comes down over the fenders. A lot of other manufacturers use it but it’s expensive because you’ve got to get all of those parts coming together, and to make sure it’s flat and even all the way across. So this is the first application of that, and we wanted to give it that premium feel, that premium look.”

7. The interior of the 2018 Stinger carried over elements of the GT concept from 2011, and packaging and use of top tier materials were a major focus. “I think from an overall standpoint, this cockpit is pretty straightforward. We’ve got the three center vents in it. This was also from the original concept; they included a lot of the details on that. This has a shift by wire, which helped in some of that packaging when that transmission came through. The main thing is the backseat. But I think the other point is the premium materials. We didn’t have any really hard arguments with the bean counters, we were able to get pretty much everything we wanted,” Hedrick said.

2018 Kia Stinger GT front three quarter 02

8. The Stingers feature Brembo brakes at all four corners on both the base car and the Stinger GT, and they will roll on Michelin rubber. But there’s still a question whether they will be summer or all-season as the main option. “There’s only two other names except ours on the car, hence, on the tires and the brakes, so we wanted to make sure that we had top tier stuff,” said Hedrick. “These are specific tires, they’re different sized. We have two sets; we have an 18-inch, and a 19-inch. The 19s are available only on the V-6 twin turbo. And on the all-wheel drive, we’re gonna fit all of them with summer and we’re having a debate, we haven’t finalized yet whether to do all-seasons or summer.”

9. The Stinger’s hatchback-style trunk opening created some specific challenges the team had to address. There are other five doors out there, but if you’re going after handling, this is a huge engineering challenge, this big open space in the back of the body. So there was a lot of work that went into the body in white to make sure there was this stiff, rigid chassis that we needed,” said Hedrick. “This was really a trick because it’s right over the suspension point so you’re pushing all of the road inputs right where you have a giant hole. So the backend, if you watch it on the CAD it can really move around a lot. So there’s a giant ring of ultra, high-strength steel that goes around this opening, which is a really tough material to work with. It has to be molded while it’s molten, while it’s red hot. So they have to move this thing, and it’s all done with robotics to give it the proper shape.”

Kia Stinger GT rear end

10. The concept also drove the decision to create the hatch-style trunk. We wanted to have something that was true to the concept which was two couples going down to a getaway weekend, a three day weekend, to make sure there’s enough room. If you look at the trunk on a 3 Series or an ATS, or premium sedans, it’s really small. And this, we thought, was kind of in line with the Kia practicality and the idea that you could use it as an everyday car and it’s really versatile, having this space back here means you can do a lot with it,” said Hedrick.

11. Roughly 130 meters of industrial strength adhesive is used throughout the car. “All of this was driven to get a really, really, super stiff, light body. It was not only for safety, it was also for that premium feel that we’re trying to build, that Germanic, European feel. But also just to give it a great handling, so the suspension can do its job,” said Hedrick.

12. The former head of BMW’s M division had a hand in the Stinger’s engineering. It’s a really cool looking car, and it’s going to drive as good as it looks because we’ve got Albert [Albert Biermann, BMW M’s former VP of engineering who left the company to become Hyundai’s head of vehicle test and high performance development in late 2014] involved with it from about halfway through development. And he’s pushing us really hard to make sure that it’s a great drive and also for our dealers to get them excited, because they’ve never had a driving car. So it’ll be interesting, it’ll be really interesting.

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2017 Toyota Prius C Gets Refreshed http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-toyota-prius-c-gets-new-look-updated-safety-tech/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-toyota-prius-c-gets-new-look-updated-safety-tech/#respond Sun, 15 Jan 2017 10:15:58 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=1097019 You’re about to see some small but notable changes for Toyota’s smallest hybrid. Along with cosmetic upgrades, the 2017 Toyota Prius C receives a few new standard features. Look for a new front fascia, side rocker panels, rear bumper, and a black rear spoiler. Alloy wheels are now standard instead of steel wheels. Toyota’s Safety...

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You’re about to see some small but notable changes for Toyota’s smallest hybrid. Along with cosmetic upgrades, the 2017 Toyota Prius C receives a few new standard features.

Look for a new front fascia, side rocker panels, rear bumper, and a black rear spoiler. Alloy wheels are now standard instead of steel wheels.

Toyota’s Safety Sense C package is another new standard feature on all model grades. This system includes automatic emergency braking, lane departure alert, and automatic high beams that switch between high and low beams when appropriate.

2017 Toyota Prius C HatchbackThe 2017 Toyota Prius C is available in the following trims: One, Two, Three, and Four. Standard features on the One model include an Entune audio system with a 6.1-inch touchscreen as well as Bluetooth hands-free capability, AM/FM CD player, auxiliary audio jack, USB 2.0 port with iPod connectivity, and a four-speaker sound system. Still, you have to upgrade to get many other basic features such as cruise control and a backup camera.

The Two model adds cruise control as well as soft-touch materials and other cabin upgrades. Three brings new technology features including smart key and the Entune Premium Audio system with integrated navigation, while the Four model tops the range with a power sliding moonroof, integrated backup camera, SofTex-trimmed seats, and a heated steering wheel and heated front seats.

The Prius C continues on with one powertrain option. A 1.5-liter gas engine combines with an electric motor and nickel-metal hydride battery to produce a total output of 99 hp. Fuel economy is rated at 48/43 mpg city/highway. Pricing has not yet been announced for the updated 2017 Toyota Prius c.

 

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EPA Finalizes 2025 Fuel Economy Standards http://www.automobilemag.com/news/epa-finalizes-fuel-economy-standards-2025/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/epa-finalizes-fuel-economy-standards-2025/#respond Sat, 14 Jan 2017 23:41:42 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=1097235 The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) had until April of next year to finalize fuel economy standards for passenger cars and light trucks, but decided to lock in the standards on Friday, just one week before President Obama leaves office. U.S. and Foreign automakers have urged President-elect Trump, who has criticized some of Obama’s climate policies,...

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The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) had until April of next year to finalize fuel economy standards for passenger cars and light trucks, but decided to lock in the standards on Friday, just one week before President Obama leaves office. U.S. and Foreign automakers have urged President-elect Trump, who has criticized some of Obama’s climate policies, to roll back the fuel economy targets, saying they impose high costs.

Finalized in 2012, the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) regulation requires automakers to bring the average fuel economy of their respective model lineups to 54.5 mpg by the year 2025. In July of 2016, due to the increased sales of SUVs and trucks, the EPA relaxed the 54.5 mpg target to a more realistic goal between 50 mpg and 52.6 mpg by 2025.

“My decision today rests on the technical record created by over eight years of research, hundreds of published reports including an independent review by the National Academy of Sciences, hundreds of stakeholder meetings, and multiple opportunities for the public and the industry to provide input,” said EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy when she announced her decision on Friday.

Environmental groups are happy with the EPA’s decision, but the same cannot be said for automakers. According to Reuters, Gloria Bergquist, a spokeswoman for the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, criticized the EPA’s decision. “Our fundamental priority remains striking the right balance to continue fuel economy gains and carbon reduction without compromising consumer affordability and vital auto-sector jobs,” she said.

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Chevrolet Introduces Life-Sized Lego Batmobile at Detroit Auto Show http://www.automobilemag.com/news/chevrolet-introduces-life-sized-lego-batmobile-detroit-auto-show/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/chevrolet-introduces-life-sized-lego-batmobile-detroit-auto-show/#respond Sat, 14 Jan 2017 20:12:34 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=1097227 The Caped Crusader and Chevrolet have joined forces to promote the February 10 release of “The Lego Batman Movie.” The Bat Signal shined on GM’s Renaissance Center headquarters in downtown Detroit the evening before Chevrolet revealed its 17-foot Lego Batmobile at the first public day of the North American International Auto Show. Chevrolet, in conjunction...

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The Caped Crusader and Chevrolet have joined forces to promote the February 10 release of “The Lego Batman Movie.” The Bat Signal shined on GM’s Renaissance Center headquarters in downtown Detroit the evening before Chevrolet revealed its 17-foot Lego Batmobile at the first public day of the North American International Auto Show.

Chevrolet, in conjunction with Detroit’s Cody Rouge community, A World in Motion, and First Lego League, unveiled the 1,695-pound life-sized Lego Batmobile that took 1,833 hours to build and consists of 344,187 Lego bricks. Inspired by Batman’s Speedwagon in the upcoming movie, the Lego sculpture is almost 7 feet high, over 9 feet wide, uses 17 colors, and is supported by an interior frame made from more than 86 feet of square tube aluminum.

Chevrolet LEGO Batmobile at 2017 Detroit auto show 2

“To work on the LEGO Batmobile with Warner Bros. is an absolute thrill for us at Chevy,”  said Chevrolet’s U.S. president of  marketing, Paul Edwards, in a release. “Many of the themes in ‘The LEGO Batman Movie,’ like imagination, family and community, align perfectly with our Chevy brand values and add to the value of the partnership.”

Expect to see Chevrolet‘s Lego Batmobile in the next installment of the automaker’s “Real People, Not Actors” campaign that also features real Lego figurines. The Lego Batmobile will be on display in Detroit until January 22.

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Just Listed: Mickey Thompson’s 1963 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 “Big Tank” http://www.automobilemag.com/news/just-listed-mickey-thompsons-1963-chevrolet-corvette-z06-big-tank/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/just-listed-mickey-thompsons-1963-chevrolet-corvette-z06-big-tank/#respond Sat, 14 Jan 2017 01:00:44 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=1097221 Barrett-Jackson’s upcoming 2017 Scottsdale sale has proven to be a real doozy for Corvette fans. America’s fiberglass coupe is well-represented, with rare examples ranging from a squad of SCCA-ready C4 ‘Vettes up to a one-of-one experimental GM test vehicle, CERV 1. We’re still finding some seriously cool stuff, including a hype-desirable 1963 Chevrolet Corvette Z06...

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Barrett-Jackson’s upcoming 2017 Scottsdale sale has proven to be a real doozy for Corvette fans. America’s fiberglass coupe is well-represented, with rare examples ranging from a squad of SCCA-ready C4 ‘Vettes up to a one-of-one experimental GM test vehicle, CERV 1. We’re still finding some seriously cool stuff, including a hype-desirable 1963 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 “Big Tank” originally owned by racing legend Mickey Thompson.

This white C2 coupe exists as a perfect storm of rare performance options, period racing gear, and celebrity ownership coalesced into one package. The C2 Z06 is one of the rarest Corvettes ever created, designed as a way around GM’s factory ban on motorsports competition. The RPO code “Z06” was created for intrepid wanna-be racers to take  delivery of a circuit-ready ‘Vette, straight from the factory floor.

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Each Z06 in ’63 arrived with uprated suspension components on all four corners, including larger diameter shocks, springs, and front anti-roll bar. A beefy brake package came standard as well, including dual master cylinders, high-spec brake lining, power-assisted drums, brake booster, and vents for extra airflow. Crucially, a number of the ’63 Z06s, including this example, arrived with a massive 36-gallon tank for endurance racing.

In 1962, Thompson took delivery of five fuel-injected C2 Z06s, prepping each one for competition. This car underwent a complete nut-and-bolt restoration, and is presented in spectacular condition. Under the front hood, a 5.3-liter (327 ci) fuel-injected V-8 pumped out an impressive 360 hp. This car served as Thompson’s daily runabout for a period of time, giving this car an incredible provenance.

No word on how much this car will go for, but it won’t be cheap. Make sure to head over to Barrett-Jackson’s Scottsdale page for more information and the chance to submit a bid online.

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http://www.automobilemag.com/news/just-listed-mickey-thompsons-1963-chevrolet-corvette-z06-big-tank/feed/ 0 1963 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Barrett Jackson Engine 1963 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Barrett Jackson Engine 1963 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Barrett Jackson Engine 1963 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Barrett Jackson Engine
Just Listed: Six Offbeat Cars from Barrett-Jackson’s 2017 Scottsdale Sale http://www.automobilemag.com/news/just-listed-six-offbeat-cars-barrett-jacksons-2017-scottsdale-sale/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/just-listed-six-offbeat-cars-barrett-jacksons-2017-scottsdale-sale/#respond Fri, 13 Jan 2017 23:42:27 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=1097179 For the most part, you can expect more-or-less the same theme and curated quality of cars from Monterey-favorite auction houses like RM Sotheby’s and Gooding & Co. If you’re in attendance at one of those beau monde sales, you’ll run into a grab-bag of vintage European sports cars, pre-war rolling sculpture, and an assorted gathering...

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For the most part, you can expect more-or-less the same theme and curated quality of cars from Monterey-favorite auction houses like RM Sotheby’s and Gooding & Co. If you’re in attendance at one of those beau monde sales, you’ll run into a grab-bag of vintage European sports cars, pre-war rolling sculpture, and an assorted gathering of top-spec, showroom-fresh muscle cars.

Barrett-Jackson, on the other hand, prides itself on catering to the needs of every type of enthusiast. The lot docket is mostly filled with all manner of muscle cars, but there’s a little bit of everything up for grabs. Here are six unconventional classics crossing the auction block at Barrett-Jackson’s 2017 Scottsdale sale:

1971 Halfinger 700 AP Troop Carrier

Conceived and designed in Austria as a replacement for decrepit surplus Willys Jeeps from the U.S., Steyr-Daimler-Puch developed the Halfinger 700 to serve as a generalized military transport vehicle.

Like all Halfingers, this 1971 example is powered by an air-cooled flat-twin that sends power to all four wheels through a four-speed manual transmission. Thanks to its size, it’s exceptionally light, wafting in at a dainty 1,100 pounds.

1970 GMC C/K Crew Cab

It looks weird, doesn’t it? As far as we can tell, the second-generation of C/K wasn’t available from the factory in crew-cab guise, so if you wanted four-doors, you turned to a handful of GM-approved aftermarket conversion shops. There are a few styles of dealer-installed crew-cab conversions, and this one appears to have two front doors grafted behind the front seats. It’s lengthened, as well, giving it an ungainly and unnatural appearance.

1991 Porsche 911 Carrera 2 Targa RWB

Nakai-San’s RWB creations don’t often go up for auction, especially not the few RWB-ized 911 Targas. According to Barrett-Jackson, this is one of the first RWBs created for the U.S. and wears the stable body flares and deep-dish wheels. It’s a tidy example of a top-tier “tuner” car, so you’ll need a hefty check to win this lot.

2010 Ford Focus RS

We weren’t privy to any of Ford’s RS products before the Stateside launch of the current Focus RS, so this acid-green RS coupe will likely be one of the rarest track-toys around. That’s right – you won’t be able to drive this on the street, barring enactment of the Show and Display law.

It’s a shame, really. This is considered one of the finest front-wheel-drive cars ever made, and it arrives with a bucket of go-fast parts to boot. According to the listing, the Volvo-sourced inline-five engine is spitting out a heap more power than stock thanks to bigger turbocharger, wastegate, upgraded manifold, 1,000-cc injectors, forged internals, beefier fuel pump, and upgraded cooling systems.

1970 Plymouth Barracuda “Torc”

We’re not quite sure where to start on this ‘Cuda. Unlike most high-power, high-profile muscle car builds, whatever check-writer commissioned this psychopath eschewed the traditional big-block gas engine in favor of a 6.7-liter Cummins I-6, putting down an insane 1,500 hp and 2,500 lb-ft of torque to the rear wheels. Yowza.

1955 Messerschmitt KR-200

You might not be able to tell from the goofy appearance, but this is one of the most desirable microcars ever made. As the name implies, the KR200 comes from the Post-War efforts of Messerschmitt aircraft company. Power comes from a tiny 0.19-liter (191 cc) engine, sending power to the wheels through a four-speed transmission.

1971 Halfinger 700 AP Troop Carrier Barrett Jackson Engine Rear 1971 Halfinger 700 AP Troop Carrier Barrett Jackson Engine Front Three Quarters 1971 Halfinger 700 AP Troop Carrier Barrett Jackson Engine Interior 1971 Halfinger 700 AP Troop Carrier Barrett Jackson Engine 1970 GMC CK Crew Cab Barrett Jackson Side 1970 GMC CK Crew Cab Barrett Jackson Rear Three Quarters 1970 GMC CK Crew Cab Barrett Jackson Front Three Quarters 1970 GMC CK Crew Cab Barrett Jackson Engine 1991 Porsche 911 Carrera 2 Targa RWB Barrett Jackson Front Three Quarters 1991 Porsche 911 Carrera 2 Targa RWB Barrett Jackson Rear Three Quarters 1991 Porsche 911 Carrera 2 Targa RWB Barrett Jackson Interior 1991 Porsche 911 Carrera 2 Targa RWB Barrett Jackson Engine 2010 Ford Focus RS Barrett Jackson Front Three Quarters 2010 Ford Focus RS Barrett Jackson Rear Three Quarters 2010 Ford Focus RS Barrett Jackson Engine 2010 Ford Focus RS Barrett Jackson Interior 1970 Plymouth Barracuda “Torc” Barrett Jackson Front Three Quarters 1970 Plymouth Barracuda “Torc” Barrett Jackson Rear Three Quarters 1970 Plymouth Barracuda “Torc” Barrett Jackson Interior 1970 Plymouth Barracuda “Torc” Barrett Jackson Engine 1955 Messerschmitt KR 200 Barret Jackson Front 1955 Messerschmitt KR 200 Barrett Jackson Front Three Quarters 1955 Messerschmitt KR 200 Barrett Jackson Open

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Hybrid Bentley Bentayga Coming Next Year http://www.automobilemag.com/news/report-bentley-will-offer-plug-in-hybrid-versions-of-every-model/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/report-bentley-will-offer-plug-in-hybrid-versions-of-every-model/#respond Fri, 13 Jan 2017 23:30:10 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=1097006 Bentley has yet to offer an electrified model, but according to a report from Automotive News, it will add plug-in hybrid technology to its entire lineup in the next few years. Some of the first vehicles to receive plug-in hybrid powertrain options will be the Bentayga and the all-new Continental GT. A plug-in Bentayga will...

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Bentley has yet to offer an electrified model, but according to a report from Automotive News, it will add plug-in hybrid technology to its entire lineup in the next few years.

Some of the first vehicles to receive plug-in hybrid powertrain options will be the Bentayga and the all-new Continental GT. A plug-in Bentayga will arrive in 2018, while a plug-in Continental GT will make a showing after a new W-12-powered model debuts. The plug-in version will have a V-6 engine, but its power output should rise to V-8 levels, Bentley CEO Wolfgang Durheimer told AN.

The decision to offer a plug-in hybrid version of every model in its lineup signals that Bentley is serious about the technology. Bentley sees plug-in hybrids as an important part of a green future, not just a temporary solution until it’s ready to bring out fully electric vehicles.

“PHEV sometimes is mentioned as a transitional technology — it will be out of our way pretty soon,” Durheimer said at the 2017 Automotive News World Congress in Detroit. “From my point of view, plug-in hybrid technology provides the best of two worlds.”

According to Durheimer, one of the main draws is that plug-in hybrids can travel long distances more easily than pure electric vehicles. “I think the combustion engine will follow us for a long time,” he said.

Bentley’s plans have been brewing for at least a few years. In 2014, the automaker debuted a plug-in hybrid concept based on the Mulsanne at the Beijing auto show. At the time, it said 90 percent of its model lineup would be available as a plug-in hybrid by the end of the decade.

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