Misc. Auto Shows auto news

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Lamborghini Huracan Super Trofeo gets teaser trailer before Pebble Beach debut

08/02/2014   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Coupes, Videos, Lamborghini, Misc. Auto Shows, Racing

Lamborghini first tipped us to the coming arrival of its race-ready Huracán Super Trofeo, with this dark-and-camouflaged teaser image a few weeks back. Slated to replace the venerable Gallardo Super Trofeo in the brand's one-make series, the Huracán flavored for racing duty should result in a faster field.

However, before the new Super Trofeo car debuts on host circuits for the North American, European and Asian iterations of the series, it'll get a share of the spotlight at Pebble Beach. Lamborghini is scheduled to pull the wrapper off its new racecar at The Quail on August 15 - an event we're sure to be in attendance for.

Until then, we can offer up one more pulse-pounding teaser of the new Huracán, in the form of a new official video. The Super Trofeo Lamborghini is still wearing its under cover uniform in this bit, and the camera darts from focus to blur with irritating regularity, but you'll get the idea.

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Mercedes takes VW Westfalia Camper idea upscale with new Marco Polo

07/09/2014   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Minivans/MPVs, Euro, Mercedes Benz, Misc. Auto Shows, Special/Limited Editions, Luxury

Mercedes-Benz V-Class Marco Polo

Earlier this year, Mercedes-Benz revealed the new V-Class. Slotting in below the popular Sprinter, the new V-Class replaced both the Viano and Vito upon its debut at the Geneva Motor Show. But Mercedes isn't quite done with it just yet. At the upcoming Caravan Salon in Düsseldorf, Germany, Mercedes will reveal the Marco Polo - a versatile, stylish and decidedly contemporary take on the classic camper van.

Named after the famous Italian explorer, the Marco Polo was converted by Westfalia, an outfit which you might more closely associate with classic VW camper vans but which Daimler absorbed over a decade ago. Offering, according to the press release below, "a maximum of opportunities to be independent, free and spontaneous," the Marco Polo sleeps four thanks to the rear bench that electrically folds flat into a bed and the second berth under the pop-top. The flexible interior is decked out like you'd expect a modern Mercedes to be, with ambient LED lighting as well as wood, metal and piano black trim.

It's got an onboard kitchenette with two gas burners, a sink and fridge with a 10 gallons of fresh water and an even bigger waste tank. All that gear is shlepped around by a choice of four-cylinder turbodiesel engines ranging in output from 136 to 190 horsepower. The relatively compact form boasts a turning circle similar to a full-size sedan and a height designed to fit into most garages and car washes. All of which just might make us reconsider the appeal of traveling by camper van.

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Range Rover Sport SVR sounds like a lion... or a Jaguar

07/03/2014   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Sports/GTs, SUVs, Videos, Land Rover, Misc. Auto Shows

Land Rover Range Rover Sport SVR uncrated

Jaguar's AJ-V8 engine is many things to many cars. It may be old, sure - having been developed with Ford money back in the late 1990s - but it's also grown to be seriously powerful, with output rising from 240 horsepower in the original 3.2-liter version to 575 hp in its latest 5.0-liter supercharged form. It's rather ubiquitous, too, powering an assortment of Jaguar, Aston Martin, Ford, Lincoln and Land Rover models like the one you see here. And it's one of the sweetest-sounding engines on the market.

That latest AJ-V8-powered Land Rover is the Range Rover Sport SVR, presented in prototype form at the Goodwood Festival of Speed this past weekend. That's where Shmee150, one of the most popular automotive videographers on YouTube, caught a glimpse of it being uncrated and started up.

With 550 metric horsepower on tap, it's sure to give even the Porsche Cayenne Turbo S a run for its money - and really, there are few SUVs that can do that (at least until the Lamborghini Urus comes along, or Jeep decides to slot the new 707-horsepower Hellcat V8 into the Grand Cherokee SRT). Expect the first of JLR's SVR models to debut at Pebble Beach next month, but in the meantime, watch - and more importantly, listen - to the video below.

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Ford rolls out diesel Focus ST at Goodwood [w/poll]

06/30/2014   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Sports/GTs, Euro, Hatchbacks, Ford, Misc. Auto Shows, UK, Diesel

Ford Focus ST Diesel

If you're in the market for a hot hatch, there are some excellent choices at your disposal - especially if you live in Europe. But if you want a diesel, well, your choices become rather more limited. Volkswagen tends to that niche market with the Golf GTD (essentially an oil-burning version of the GTI available Stateside), but that's about the extent of it. The pleas of those looking for more diesel-burning hot hatch choices haven't fallen on deaf ears at Ford, with the Blue Oval not only rolling out a facelifted gas-powered Focus ST at the Goodwood Festival of Speed this weekend, but also a new diesel version as well.

The diesel Focus ST (which we hope and pray isn't marketed as the STD) packs a 2.0-liter turbodiesel four producing 182 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque to propel the oil-burning hot hatch to 62 in 8.1 seconds en route to a top speed of 135 miles per hour. With less power and only slightly more torque, that makes the diesel Focus ST considerably slower than the gasoline one, which packs 252 hp and 270 lb-ft, runs to 62 in 6.5 seconds and tops out at 154 mph, but (in a testament to how far particulate filters have come) the diesel model cuts carbon emissions by nearly a third compared to the petrol version and returns about 50-percent better fuel economy, which makes that much more of a difference in markets where diesel is already priced better than gasoline at the pump.

For buyers who wouldn't consider anything other than a diesel, it also represents 23-percent more power than the previous top-level diesel Focus. The VW Golf GTD, for reference, offers up 181 hp (just 1 horse less), 280 lb-ft (15 fewer torques) but is somehow estimated to reach 60 in a considerably fleeter 7.4 seconds.

Regardless of engine choice, buyers get the same six-speed manual transmission and all the other enhancements introduced on the updated Focus ST, including recalibrated suspension and steering, updated front- and rear-end styling and upgraded interior equipment. Plus they'll get to choose between the five-door hatchback or extended wagon bodystyles, giving our European compatriots four configurations where American buyers only get the one. Increased utility and fuel economy aside, we're still convinced ours is the pick of the litter, and we've got our doubts that a diesel ST would sell in America. What do you think? Vote in our poll below and then have your say in Comments.

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McLaren rolls out new competition-spec 650S GT3

06/27/2014   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Coupes, Misc. Auto Shows, Racing, McLaren

McLaren 650S GT3

When McLaren rolled out its new 650S, we knew it would only be a matter of time before it would completely replace the 12C altogether. And that would include the racing version - not least because McLaren officials told us as much. And with the Goodwood Festival of Speed now getting underway in the UK, Woking's GT racing division has revealed its new GT3-spec racer.

The new McLaren 650S GT3 benefits from several key upgrades over the MP4-12C GT3 that's been competing for the past three seasons in racing series like the Blancpain Endurance Series and GT Asia championship - both of whose standings it currently leads - as well as the Pirelli World Challenge, European Le Mans Series and countless local racing series.

For starters, McLaren gave its GT racer a new face that not only more closely resemble the 650S (which, like the previous GT3, is also based on the 12C's chassis) but, along with the rest of the revised bodywork (and some rather intriguing-looking wing mirrors), is also more aerodynamically efficient to provide more downforce, better cooling and less drag. McLaren says the 650S GT3 also has a wider track, revised suspension geometry and will cost privateer teams less to run in whichever series they choose thanks to more robust components and a powertrain that can run longer between rebuilds. The cockpit has also been updated to make it more accommodating for drivers who often have to run it over long distances around the clock.

McLaren's familiar 3.8-liter twin-turbo V8 provides the motivation, mated to a six-speed competition-spec sequential gearbox. But while the same engine produces 641 horsepower in road-going spec, the FIA's Balance of Power regulations mandate it be limited to 493 hp. That actually makes it the least powerful model McLaren makes, but then, of course, the same regulations apply to all the cars against which it will be competing, so customer teams will be counting on the other revisions to help them stay at out ahead of GT3-spec versions of models like the Porsche 911 GT3, Aston Martin V12 Vantage, Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG, Ferrari 458 Italia and Bentley Continental GT.

McLaren GT says it plans to build 15 examples in time for the start of next season, each selling for £330,000 (before tax, or about $560k). However, teams already running the current 12C GT3 will have the opportunity to upgrade theirs to 650S spec as well. Scope out the full details in the press release below.

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McLaren Special Operations showing limited-edition 650S at Goodwood

06/27/2014   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Convertibles, Coupes, Sports/GTs, Misc. Auto Shows, McLaren

MSO 650S Spider

When things get under way at the Goodwood Festival of Speed this weekend, McLaren will be among the automakers revealing new metal. The F1-team-turned-automaker is expected to reveal the GT3 racing version of the new 650S, but will also have a new special edition of the same to show off to prospective buyers and supercar enthusiasts alike.

Previewed in concept form just a couple of months ago, the 650S by McLaren Special Operations offers a number of upgrades over the existing supercar. Supervised by Woking's design director Frank Stephenson, the MSO 650S features satin-finish carbon-fiber exterior components, a three-piece rear bumper, a more aggressive rear diffuser, 10-spoke lightweight diamond-cut alloys and an interior decked out in black leather, Alcantara, glossy trim and more satin-finish carbon.

Buyers will be able to choose between coupe and Spider in one of three special metallic paint finishes: Agrigan Black (with a ruby red flake) as previewed on the concept, Papaya Spark that reinterprets McLaren's signature orange and the above-pictured Sarigan Quartz silver with "a subtle gold infusion." Regardless of the color or body style, however, only 50 examples of the MSO 650S will be offered, starting at £252,500 in fixed-roof form. That represents a premium of more than £50,000 ($85k) over the stock 650S, for an approximate US sticker of $350,000.

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2015 Ford Focus ST gets sleeker style, improved dynamics

06/27/2014   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Sports/GTs, Hatchbacks, Ford, Misc. Auto Shows

2015 Ford Focus ST

The Brits don't really have a major auto show these days. Not in a conventional sense, anyway, with stationary vehicles under floodlights in a closed exposition space. What they do have, you could argue, is much better: the Goodwood Festival of Speed, where the public can view the latest machinery not only under an open sky, but in motion as well, speeding up Lord March's front lawn. And this year, British automakers are rolling in with some very enticing new metal.

In the past few days alone we've confirmed the McLaren 650S GT3 and MSO, Jaguar F-Type Project 7, Range Rover Sport SVR and Ariel Ace will all be revealed for the first time at Goodwood this weekend. Ford isn't, strictly speaking, a British automaker, but for all its history in the UK, it might as well. So it's chosen Goodwood as the site to unveil its refreshed Focus ST.

The upgraded Blue Oval hot hatch still packs a 2.0-liter turbo four with 252 horsepower and 270 pound-feet of torque driving through a six-speed manual to the front wheels, so we're not expecting much change in measurable performance. But Ford has given the new Focus ST a new front suspension setup and a new electric power-assisted steering rack that combine to promise improved handling.

While it was at it, Ford has equipped the 2015 Focus ST with redesigned front and rear fascias, HID and LED lighting, 18-inch wheels and an improved cabin complete with a redesigned center stack, center console and front door panels, a new flat-bottom steering wheel and standard rear-view camera. Buyers will also be able to opt for a new shade of silver and black or red racing stripes as well as a heated steering wheel and eight-way power driver's seat - all of which promises to make one of our favorite hot hatches that much better, and that can be no bad thing.

Scroll down for the official release from Ford.

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Aston Martin confirms DP-100 for Gran Turismo 6 and Goodwood debut

06/27/2014   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Concept Cars, Videos, Aston Martin, Misc. Auto Shows, Toys

Gran Turismo 6 is set to come to life this weekend at the Goodwood Festival of Speed. That's where Mercedes-AMG will run its Vision Gran Turismo and Nissan will show a full-size mockup of its Concept 2020 Vision Gran Turismo. Now Aston Martin has announced it's getting in on the action as well with its Design Prototype 100.

Aston has released a video two teaser images to give us a hint at what it's working on, but will reveal the finished product in the Supercar Paddock at Goodwood tomorrow, although we don't know if that will be in the form of a scale model, a full-size show car, a series of design sketches or a virtual rendition existing only in the game. From the look of the two images, though, it appears that we're dealing with an LMP-style racer with Aston's ubiquitous V12 mounted in the middle of a carbon-fiber chassis.

What we do know for certain is that, when it's released for download next month, it will be the latest (but certainly not the last) in a long line of concepts designed specifically for driving on the PlayStation 3.

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Watch the full Goodwood Festival of Speed weekend on live stream

06/26/2014   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Videos, Misc. Auto Shows, UK

Ferrari F60 speeds past Goodwood House

The Goodwood Festival of Speed kicks off today, representing the premier automotive event in the UK. But if your travel plans don't have you headed for Britain this weekend, and you still want to watch all the action live, we're glad to report that the festival organizers are putting it all live on YouTube.

The four-day spectacular starts today with the presentation of new models on the "digital stage," and continues tomorrow when things really pick up speed. Friday, Saturday and Sunday are when the classic hill climb event takes place, with all manner of vehicles running the famous course up Lord March's lawn, from classics road and racing cars through F1, Indy, NASCAR, rally and Group C racers and on to motorbikes and contemporary supercars - all peppered with air shows for good measure.

Bonhams will hold its auction on Friday at 2:00 PM (GMT) - the same time as the rally stage opens - and there'll be a minute of engine noise (more fitting than silence) on Sunday in tribute to the late Jack Brabham. Before all is said and done, we very well might have a new record on our hands (served up by Sébastien Loeb in the Peugeot 208 T16 in which he set the record at Pikes Peak), Maserati will drive a specially-prepared (and more powerful) MC12 in celebration of its centenary, the Koenigsegg One:1 will make its first run, and we'll see Kimi Raikkonen reunited with his 2007 championship-winning Ferrari, plus Damon Hill with his winning 1996 Williams FW18 and Andy Wallace with the Jaguar XJR9 LM in which he won at Le Mans in 1998.

In short, there'll be no shortage of action to check out, and you can watch it all here as it happens. Unfortunately Goodwood has split the live feeds into individual days, but we've got all four feeds posted right here below.

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Jaguar confirms 575-hp F-Type Project 7 for Goodwood debut

06/25/2014   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Convertibles, Sports/GTs, Jaguar, Misc. Auto Shows

Jaguar F-Type Project 7

Two days ago, Jaguar announced it had something special in store for the Goodwood Festival of Speed this weekend. Then yesterday images of that special creation, the F-Type Project 7, leaked out. And now, as promised, Coventry has released the full details on the ultimate F-Type to date. And its even better than we expected.

The production version of the concept revealed last year, the F-Type Project 7 celebrates the 60th anniversary of the D-Type by borrowing some of that legendary roadster's design cues, right down to the rear fin and British Racing Green livery with white racing stripes.

Of course the Project 7 is more than just a retro appearance package. The bespoke speedster packs a version of Jaguar's prolific 5.0-liter supercharged V8 with 575 horsepower - 25 more than the F-Type R Coupe - to make it the Leaping Cat marque's most powerful production car to date. Mated to Coventry's familiar eight-speed automatic transmission, that's said to be enough to propel the Project 7 to 60 in 3.8 seconds en route to an electronically limited top speed of 186 miles per hour. Keeping all that power and pace in check and on the road are such features as carbon ceramic brakes, a full complement of carbon-fiber aero components, electronic differential and brake-based torque vectoring system.

Fully road-legal, the flagship F-Type features a folding cloth roof that can be removed entirely. Fortunate buyers will be able to choose between blue, red or green (with white graphics), or black or white (with grey graphics). Jaguar's new Special Operations division will only make 250 examples of the F-Type Project 7, each of which is sure to command a suitable premium over the $92K MSRP of the F-Type V8 S roadster or $99K F-Type R Coupe. Scope out the full details in the press release below.

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