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Official photos of Aston Martin’s super exclusive Lagonda surface
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  • 2015 Aston Martin Lagonda
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Aston Martin’s making a Middle East-only Lagonda sedan, thanks to the rich and deep pockets of the various one percenters in the sandy deserts over yonder.

And to brag to the rest of the world and taunt about how we can’t get it, Aston Martin finally revealed official photos of its Lagonda prototype running about the deserts of Oman. Built on the same VH platform as the current Rapide, the new Lagonda receives a lightweight carbon fiber body and is limited to just 100 units. An updated 6.0L V12 is included in the mix with around 600bhp on tap, mated to a ZF-sourced eight-speed automatic.

In Oman, the Lagonda will be tested for around 14,000 miles before being transported back to the United Kingdom for additional torture tests.

- By: Chris Chin


Report: Mercedes-Benz serious about hybridization, could reveal 10 new models by 2017
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Mercedes-Benz is serious about their hybrid plans as Australia’s CarAdvice recently heard of 10 possible plug-in models from the Silver Arrow.

So far, the latest plug-in model to come from Stuttgart is the S500 Plug-In Hybrid, but similarly equipped models could surface in great variety by 2017. According to Daimler AG’s Dr. Thomas Weber, the plan involves making plug-in hybrid variants of the C-, E-, and S-Class models, in addition to various crossover SUVs. Each model could surface every four months until 2017.

The next model to follow the S-Class could be the new C-Class Plug-In Hybrid. Not much is know, though visually, the model shouldn’t be that much harder to differentiate from the standard C-Class, except for slightly more unique body work for improved aerodynamics and the inclusion of active body shutters. Under the hood should be a 2.0L turbo four-banger with a 63hp electric motor. Alternatively, the gasoline portion could involve the brand’s new 3.0L twin-turbo V8 with an electric motor.

An arrival at the Paris Auto Show is expected for the C-Class Plug-In Hybrid.

- By: Chris Chin

Source: CarAdvice.com.au


Report: The Kia Soul could get a boost in soul with a turbo and AWD

The Kia Soul is a very sweet deal for the value subcompact crossover that it is, but to make things possibly more interesting, Kia could be boosting some more soul into the Soul with a turbocharger and even all-wheel drive, according to Automobile Magazine.

The turbo would take form as a high-performance version of the Soul, thanks to the same 1.6L turbo four-banger in the current Kia Forte, good for a not too shabby 201bhp and 195 lb-ft of torque. The new turboed Soul should also get sportier suspension and brakes to cope with the extra boost.

As for the all-wheel drive version, not much is particularly known–though being a crossover, the lack of all-wheel drive probably keeps sales from truly skyrocketing, since the all-wheel traction drivetrain is just as high on demand and popular as the crossover itself. Plus, being a crossover, all-wheel drive is in many ways expected.

There’s no particular time frame in mind, but a prediction within the next few years shouldn’t be too unreasonable.

- By: Chris Chin

Source: Automobile Magazine


Report: The rumor strikes back – a Bugatti sedan could actually happen
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Rumors of a Bugatti-based sedan have been circulating the rumor mill for quite some time, but never has it ever come to fruition. Bugatti first expressed interest to produce a sedan with the Galibier Concept from 2009, which possibly could’ve taken the title as the world’s fastest sedan. However, it never made it into production because a sedan was thought to “dilute the Bugatti philosophy,” according to the brand’s former head honcho, Wolfgang Schreiber.

Now that Wolfgang Durheimer is at the helm of Bugatti in addition to Bentley, Durheimer wants to bring the sedan idea back to the table as a possibility, according to AutomotiveNews.

This isn’t sure-on confirmation that a Bugatti sedan is going to actually happen, though the possibility is just slightly and more distinctly greater. Should it happen, a power rating of at least 1,300bhp and a top speed of around 235 mph are some notable benchmarks for the sedan.

Not much else is known, so speculation remains to be the name of the game here, for now.

- By: Chris Chin

Source: AutomotiveNews


Report: Lexus may finally be working on a GS F and a possible four-door RC F by 2016

Lexus could finally be in the works with a GS F to compete against the likes of the BMW M5, the Jaguar XFR-S and the Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG, according to a new find from AutoCar in the UK.

The Japanese luxury auto giant has been on a big branding trend, pushing their newly coveted F brand, following models such as the LF-A, the IS F, and their new F Sport models. To keep the ball rolling, the new Lexus RC F was just introduced and now, Lexus could be F-ifying the GS–it’s about time.

Numerous GS F test mules have been spotted over time, tackling the infamous Nurburgring a.k.a the Green Hell, further bolstering the fact that Lexus is definitely working on something GS F related. Although no confirmation exists at this time, speculation suggests the use of the RC F’s current 5.0L V8 with 500hp and 400 lb-ft of torque serving duty under the hood, while an eight-speed auto sits in between the rear-wheels and the mill. Of course, expect high-performance suspension, brakes, steering, and chassis tuning to complement the package and to handle the extra oomph.

On a separate note, AutoCar also heard of a possible four-door coupe version of the RC F, which could compete against BMW’s rumored M4 Gran Coupe.

- By: Chris Chin

Source: AutoCar


Report: Alfa Romeo confirms a new model due next summer

Photo rendering by Thorsten-Krisch

Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne recently confirmed to be introducing a new Alfa Romeo next year, specifically on June 24, 2015, just as the automaker turns 105 years old.

Specifics as to what model this exactly may be haven’t been released, though speculation suggests it could be the new BMW 5-Series competing Alfa Romeo Giulia sedan.

Nicknamed the “Tipo 952,” the new model sports Alfa’s latest Giorgio modular platform, built to also underpin future Chrysler and Dodge models, after being developed by Maserati. As for the Giulia, it’s anticipated to receive a new line of gas and diesel fours–though we Americans can wager to receive the gas versions only. Maserati’s 3.0L twin-turbo V6 should also find its way under the hood, donning around 480hp to 520hp for the rear-wheels to handle via a dual-clutch auto tranny and a limited-slip rear. Sounds great to us, on paper, to say the least.

We’re not quite sure what to expect visually, but if it looks anything like the rendering shared with the article, we’d imagine Alfa could have a serious winner.

- By: Chris Chin

Source: Autoedizione


Cadillac announces plans to have semi-autonomous cars within two years
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General Motors’ CEO, Mary Barra, officially revealed Cadillac’s plans to begin introducing semi-autonomous cars and systems within two years, which is colloquially named, Super Cruise.

Due for a reveal sometime in 2017 on an undisclosed model, the Super Cruise system features similar tech to other models with semi-autonomous features, including an array of cameras, sensors, and lots of computers, enabling owners to be able to drive hands-free in various conditions while controlling lane tracking, braking, and speed on the highway.

In addition to the Super Cruise systems, Barra confirmed the 2017 Cadillac CTS is set to offer new vehicle-to-vehicle communication technology as a part of GM’s plan to make allow cars to talk to each other to boost on-road safety and awareness to other drivers.

For the press release, check it out after the jump.

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Report: Tesla announces joint project with Toyota

AutomotiveNews reports Tesla recently announced possibly be working with Toyota on a new project despite the fact their first joint venture, the Toyota RAV4 EV, was a bit of a flop.

According to the report, Tesla’s Elon Musk recently hinted the two companies could reunite once again to work on a “significant project” in the next two or three years. However, there are currently no concrete plans in existence for a cooperatively built vehicle, yet.

Despite this, Musk did suggest the new project could be a more high-volume model than the RAV4 EV, though what could be in the works is anyone’s guess at this point.

- By: Chris Chin

Source: Automotive News


Recalls: Several Porsche 918 examples recalled over rear-axle control arm woes

When one dollies up about $845,000 for a new car, expectations for perfection aren’t irrational. But it seems over-engineering and eye-watering price tags still don’t buy perfection as Porsche and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration have just issued a recall for five US-spec 918 Spyder supercars over problems with the rear-axle control arms. A total of 45 units worldwide are affected.

There’s a risk of the arms just flat-out breaking under use, and that’s not good by any stretch of means, especially at the speeds the 918 Spyder is capable of. Should a control arm fail, one could immediately lose control of their precious 918. Porsche is obviously on call to repair and replace all affected cars, free of charge.

No incidents and accidents have been reported, though Porsche stumbled upon the issue in June during the 918′s heavy-duty durability testing at the Nardo test track in Italy, where the automaker found and began investigating problematic parts while issuing a stop-sale.

Check out the press release after the jump.

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Report: Volkswagen to execute five-year product cycles in the US

The automobile industry is already fast paced as is, in order to keep customers interested in new products since products that become stale lost interest–this is quite the given.

As a result, Volkswagen Group of America’s Vice President of Quality and Service, Marc Trahan, recently told Edmunds that the People’s Car maker is going to implement five-year product cycles for cars in the US. Currently, the average running time for a model generation lasts for anywhere between six to eight years.

The new move to introduce new model generations every five years should allow Volkswagen to “keep models fresh and attractive.” Trahan didn’t say which models would see shortened lives, first, though this should usher in a radical new change for anyone who directly competes with Volkswagen. If Volkswagen introduces a new model every five years, others will have to do the same in order to keep up.

Speculation suggests the next-gen Jetta and Passats are the first to last only five years, though confirmation hasn’t been published since Volkswagen Group of America’s CEO, Michael Horn, did still say facelifted versions would happen three years after a product gets launched.

- By: Chris Chin

Source: Edmunds