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Monthly Archives: May 2018

Tesla Model Y To Be Revealed On March 15

tesla model y

There are some pretty outrageous things that have been said on Elon Musk’s Twitter account, and another crazy claim from the Tesla CEO is that the Model Y will be revealed on March 15. Yes, as in 10 months from this date.

When Musk said that the reveal date is on March 15, Twitter handle @DMC_Ryan remarked that the date was “oddly specific” and that he cannot tell if the Tesla CEO is serious or not. Musk answered, “I just made that up, because the Ides of March sounded good” but followed it up with “But consider it real.” He added that Tesla could unveil the Model Y anytime from late 2018 to middle of next year, so March 15 sounds about right.

That’s a pretty big window for a schedule, considering that there is still a lot of drama surrounding the Model 3’s production. Tesla can’t even settle the production issues of the Model 3 and then, there’s the Tesla Semi. Throwing in the Model Y into the fray is a bit crazy, but nothing is crazier than Tesla, Musk, and their production and delivery dates all thrown together.

If the Model Y will debut on March 15, it will begin its production by mid-2020, barring other issues. Of course, we’re all assuming that the Model Y’s production will befall the same fates as the Model S, the Model X, and the Model 3, all of which suffered from delays in production and delivery.

There is no hate here. We’re just pointing out the obvious that Tesla has made some erroneous promises in the past and have not kept them. With Tesla’s past representative of what could happen, it certainly means we will encounter some trouble along the way. But since we’re pretty excited about this small electric SUV, we’re hoping Musk will finally make true his overzealous timeframe.

 

 

 

New BMW X5 To Feature The Latest iDrive Infotainment System

bmw x5 (1)

BMW has confirmed that a new model under its X series will become available by the end of this year. The BMW X5 will also be the best platform for the German brand to feature its latest iDrive infotainment system.

The new fourth-generation BMW X5 will be revealed most likely at the Paris Motor Show in September, and might become available in dealerships around the end of 2018. This information was confirmed by BMW head Harald Kruger during BMW’s 98th annual general meeting. This will be the fourth X model to arrive this year, after the X2, the new X3, and the X4.

This new SUV will be the first vehicle to feature BMW’s latest iDrive infotainment technology, which is called the BMW Operating System 7.0. The same system will also be featured in the upcoming 3 Series saloon and the flagship X7.

The spy shots revealed a lot about the evolutionary design language that BMW has used for the X5. As a rival to the Range Rover Sport and Porsche Cayenne, the photos showed the company’s latest hexagonal lighting signature even when it is completely covered in camouflage.

CLAR Platform

The current X5, which was introduced in 2013, is still using the same platform as the second-generation X5 from 2006. The biggest challenge then is finding a suitable platform for the new X5, and this could be the CLAR platform, which has already transitioned from the saloon to the SUV in the latest X3. On the latter, the platform has already shed off 55kg off the kerbweight. The larger X5 will have more saving in terms of weight and fuel efficiency.

The new X5 will follow the 5 Series’ four- and six-cylinder petrol and diesel engines.

SUV sales for BMW grew rapidly in the past decade as this segment continues to be the main focus of customers. The company hopes to build on that success when the X5 is revealed later this year.

Mercedes-Benz Plans To Build Electric Compact Car In France

mercedes-benz concept eq a

Daimler is investing as much as $589 million in Hambach, France to produce a small electric car for Mercedes-Benz. This is the first move by the German automaker to jumpstart its plans of producing 10 electric vehicles by 2022 and finally competing with US rival Tesla and its Model 3.

The Smart brand is producing all of its EVs in Hambach. Markus Schaefer said in a statement that the Smart plant in Hambach will become a part of the brand’s global compact car production network. The lead plant will be placed in Rastatt, Germany.

Mercedes is working to make its vehicle underpinnings suitable for the conditions it wants—to be able to mass produce a variety of electric vehicles in the same volume as models with gasoline, diesel, and hybrid engines. Such a move will allow the German automaker to boost production once the orders start to come in.

Making 620,000 units of compact vehicles last year, Mercedes is currently producing its compact A-Class, B-Class, and GLA models in Rastatt, Germany, in Kecskemet, Hungary, in Beijing, China, and in Aguascalientes, Mexico. Its US rival, Tesla, was able to deliver 101,312 vehicles last year.

There was no information what EV Mercedes is planning to initially produce, though the brand presented the Concept EQA in September. It is an electric car with a 250-mile range and has the ability to recharged without having to be plugged in.

The French plant is being adapted to make it possible to house a variety of EVs that Mercedes will have in the pipeline. Particularly, the facility is being readied for the first-ever Mercedes-Benz passenger car in France. It looks like Daimler is expecting orders to pour in for its electric compact car as its Hambach plant, where Daimler produces its electric and combustion-engined two-seater Smart vehicles, can already produce more than 80,000 units in a year.

 

Three-Door 2019 Hyundai Veloster Starts At $19,385

hyundai veloster (7)

It’s the only car right now with three doors—one door on the driver’s side and two doors on the other side. The weird and yet familiar design of the Hyundai Veloster skipped the 2018 model year, but would be back this 2019 with a few upgrades.

Base Veloster

The base Veloster will be coming with a naturally aspirated 2.0-liter inline-four that can produce 147 horsepower and 132 pound-feet of torque. Paired with a six-speed manual transmission and featuring a direct injection, it will be more powerful than the previous 1.6-liter four. Standard safety equipment are forward-collision warning with automated emergency braking, lane-keeping assist, and a driver-attention monitor.

Other tech goods include LED running lamps and a rear spoiler. Seventeen-inch alloy wheels, a 7.0-inch touchscreen, a six-speaker stereo, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, a six-way manual driver’s seat, and a real metal key.

2.0 Premium

With the same engine but with six-speed automatic and paddle shifters, the 2.0 Premium has a price tag of $23,635. That price will also get you 18-inch wheels on 225-width tires, blind-spot warning with rear cross-traffic alert, a panoramic sunroof, automatic climate control, heated front seats with leatherette inserts, keyless entry with push-button start, an 8.0-inch touchscreen with SiriusXM satellite radio (which is no longer standard on base Velosters), an eight-speaker Infinity stereo, and wireless device charging. You can also enjoy three years of Blue Link telematics services.

Turbo R-Spec

For $23,785, the Veloster will come with a turbocharged 1.6-liter that produces 201 horsepower and 195 pound-feet of torque. The six-speed manual is standard and upgrades will include thicker front and rear anti-roll bars, Michelin Pilot Sport 4 summer tires, LED taillights, LED low-beams with automatic high-beams, a black grille, adjustable rather than fixed rear headrests, specific cloth trim, and Active Engine Sound. The Turbo R-spec will not carry the 2.0 Premium’s blind-spot warning, panoramic sunroof, automatic climate control, and heated front seats.

The Turbo R-spec, however, can get the 2.0 Premium’s features plus the side-mirror turn signals and seven-speed dual-clutch automatic for $2,500 more.

Turbo Ultimate

The loaded Turbo Ultimate will be sold $27,535 for the manual and $29,035 for the automatic. Standard equipment would be the rain-sensing wipers, pedestrian detection, leather with contrast stitching, a dashtop head-up display, navigation, and HD radio. The automatic version will come with adaptive cruise control and the manual will have the summer Michelins.

BMW X8 Flagship SUV Focuses On Rear-Seat Comfort

BMW X8 render. (Photo Source: BMW Blog)

BMW X8 render. (Photo Source: BMWBlog)

New details about BMW’s flagship SUV, to be called the X8, are emerging. Reports suggested that the BMW X8 will focus on giving rear-seat passengers a comfortable experience.

By all appearances before, the X8 didn’t look like it would go the coupe-SUV route. What was understood before was that BMW would focus on maximizing the rear seats for the comfort of the passengers, especially the Chinese consumers which the X8 will be targeting.

But an Autocar report published on Friday said that the X8 will feature a sloping roofline and a more coupe-like design like the smaller X4 and X6. The BMW is planning to position the X8 flagship as a rival to the Range Rover and to the Bentley Bentayga and the Rolls-Royce Cullinan if the X8 will tick off every box on the options list.

Now, in addition to the rear passengers’ extra space, the X8 will still feature a sloping coupe-like roofline that for most cars won’t be able to accommodate the needed extra space in the rear side. The X8, however, will be employing modern architectural and engineering technology to make this possible even with a slanted roofline.

The platform to be used will prove to be difficult for the German automaker, though reports indicated that the engineers will likely take elements from BMW’s CLAR modular platform and the Rolls-Royce Cullinan’s aluminum architecture.

This means that the 2020 BMW X8 will only be a four- or five-seater to achieve a comfortable experience for rear passengers. The upcoming BMW X7, which the X7 iPerformance concept previewed, will boast three rows of seats for a total of seven seats.

BMW will trademark the X8 to numerous markets around the world, including in Asia and most particularly in China. A final decision on how the X8 will look like will be made later this year before the SUV is released in 2020.

 

3 Things To Expect From The 2020 Audi SQ3

2019 audi sq3 (1)

The Audi SQ3 is the sporty and level-up version of Audi’s second-generation Q3 crossover, which will be unveiled in late July. The SQ3 will come with the trademark aggressive S styling treatment and four exhaust pipes.

This performance version of the Q3 will match the power output of the outgoing RS Q3, which will have a new iteration of Audi’s turbocharged 2.5-liter inline-five that produces at least 400 horsepower later on. The RS Q3 was not released to the American market, making the SQ3 much more in demand and anticipated.

1. Platform

Like the base model Q3, the Audi SQ3 will use the Volkswagen Group’s MQB modular-transverse platform that is being used by a wide range of vehicles—from the small VW Polo to the Atlas SUV. The SQ3 will be similar in size to the current model, but the suspension will be tuned aggressively for minimum roll and sporty handling characteristics.

2. Powertrain

The Audi SQ3 will have the same EA888 turbocharged 2.0-liter four engine that can now be found in the Audi S3 and the Volkswagen Golf R. It can produce around 300 horsepower and can go from complete stop to 60 mph in just 4.5 seconds. It will have a top speed of 155 mph. The engine will come standard with a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic and Quattro all-wheel drive. We don’t have information on other powertrains available for higher-end versions.

3. Estimated Arrival and Price

The Audi SQ3 is expected to arrive in the United States in 2019 as a 2020 model. There is no information yet about the prices, but it will have a starting price of $45,000. Other variants will go north of that range with the available options offered to the vehicle.

The 2020 Audi SQ3 is competing directly with the BMW X2 and the Mercedes-AMG GLA45.

Spy Shots

Here are some spy shots of the Audi SQ3 from CarAndDriver:

5 Things To Know About The 2020 BMW 7 Series

2019 bmw 7-series (1)

The latest sixth generation of the BMW 7 Series was revealed three years ago in 2015. Now thanks to these spy photos that revealed a fresh exterior and a revamped interior space, it looks like BMW is finally going to come out with the seventh generation of the 7 Series.

Exterior

There’s not much that happened up front but overall, the 7 Series has a revamped exterior that keeps the style fresh for new customers. It has updated headlight housings that are slimmer than the current generation and it has a reshaped hood design and new trunk lid. As revealed by the tweaked front end, this looks like an M model and will most likely include a larger grille, revised intakes, active air flaps in the kidney grille, and reshaped taillight housings.

Interior

The new 7 Series will have more or less the same interior design as before, which is characterized by horizontal lines and high-end materials throughout the cabin. The seats are going to be upholstered in Nappa leather and there’s a new three-spoke multifunction steering wheel design. On the dashboard, you’ll find a 10-inch display screen and a few knobs below. The most notable change is the new all-digital gauge cluster that finally replaces the physical needles and driver’s information screen on the current model.

Drivetrain and Performance

The 2020 BMW 7 Series will carry over the same engines as before. The base model is a turbocharged 3.0-liter inline six-cylinder machine which currently produces 320 horsepower. This will be offered in RWD and xDrive AWD. Next is twin-turbo 4.4-liter V-8 engine that makes 445 horses, though it may be upgraded with an additional 20 ponies for the 2020 version. RWD will be standard and AWD is extra.

The hybrid model, known also as the 740e, has a plug-in powertrain that produces 322 horsepower. The power comes from a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder and electric motor combo. The upgraded version could produce as much as 390 ponies. This will be paired only with AWD.

The top-of-the-line model is a turbocharged 6.6-liter V-12 with the standard AWD. The current output is 601 horsepower, though we expect a few extra ponies and better fuel rating.

Prices

The 2020 7 Series should stay within the same price range. The current model has a starting price of $83,650. The top-of-the-line M760i is selling for $156,700.

Competition

Current competitions are the Audi A8 and the Mercedes-Benz S-Class.

Photos

Check out the photos of the 2019 BMW 7 Series below, which were provided by Autoguide:

3 Things We Can Learn From The 2019 Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Spy Shots

Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 (1)

After Porsche fitted its 718 Boxster and Cayman with the GTS treatment, the German automaker is now planning the new 718 Boxster Spyder and the Cayman GT4. The spy shots shown here is that of the Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 or even possibly, a Cayman GT4 RS, which is being developed together along a new Boxster Spyder.

Powertrain

Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 (2)

The Boxster’s and Cayman’s standard versions are fitted with a turbocharged flat-4 engines, though the more powerful versions run on naturally aspirated flat-6 engines (same with its predecessors). The last Cayman GT4 was introduced in 2016 and was fitted with a 3.8-liter flat-6 that could produce 385 horsepower. What we’re seeing right now is possible the one that carries a 4.0-liter flat-6 that can come up with 400 horsepower or more.

We’re still not clear on our information whether there will be a dual-clutch transmission seeing as the last Cayman GT4 was sold exclusively with a manual gearbox. The car should be able to go 60 mph from a full stop in just 4 seconds and the top speed would be above 180 mph. The last Cayman GT4 could hit 60 mph in 4.2 seconds and its top speed was 183 mph.

Other upgrades will include a lowered suspension, a more aggressive aero kit with larger intakes, plus uprated brakes and sharpened steering.

Exterior

Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 (3)

From the spy shots, we can see that the exhaust tips are no longer on the center of the rear bumper, but were moved toward the outer flanks. Aside from that, there are not much details to go on.

Production

There will be limited production of the Cayman GT4. If you want your hands on one, you better start asking your favorite Porsche dealer. These special edition Porsches sell pretty fast.

Speaking of GT4, there’s another GT4-spec racing version called the Clubsport. A prototype of this was seen being tested at Italy’s Monza.

Photos by: CarAdvice

Hyundai Kona N Crossover With 247HP Is Looking For Approval

2018 hyundai kona

Hyundai’s N Performance sub-brand is awaiting approval from the top tier of the South Korean automaker to make over the Kona, the brand’s new compact crossover. Once it has the approval, the Hyundai Kona N Crossover will get 247 horsepower from a 2.0-liter turbo engine used in the i30 N.

Albert Biermann, Hyundai’s N performance boss, already instructed his engineers to develop a test mule version of the Kona. This test mule version would be the consideration for the production of the Kona by the end of the decade. Biermann had no assurances about the Kona getting approval, but he reiterated that the Kona needs to use the powertrain in the i30 N.

To differentiate it from the standard version, the Hyundai engineers would need to develop a different suspension and steering specs for the performance version.

The i30 N is based on the i30, an overseas version of the Elantra GT seeing as the i30 N was never offered to the American market. It was offered in three body styles—a hatchback, a wagon, and a fastback sedan. Fitted with a six-speed manual transmission, the i30 N has two engine options: the 2.0-liter four-cylinder and another version producing 271 horsepower. The latter version will power the Veloster N, which will be available in the US.

The Kona’s standard version will have two engines: a 2.0-liter four-cylinder that produces 147 horsepower and 132 pound-feet of torque, or a 1.6-liter turbocharged engine that can do 175 horsepower and 195 pound-feet of torque.

Other features of the N version of the Kona could possibly be a large grille, red-trimmed undercarriage, a special badge, and interior trim and suspension upgrades that will include a rear diffuser, small roof spoiler, and exposed rear tailpipes.

Since going on sale last February, the Kona had already sold 5,874 units. It also has plans to develop an all-electric version for 2019 and an entry-level Kona Electric will be available in Europe.

 

Mercedes AMG GT 63 S Four-Door Coupe Gets Edition 1 Model

Mercedes-AMG has decided to come up with a family style model for its AMG GT 63. The Mercedes AMG GT 63 S four-door coupe will mark its launch with an Edition 1 model, complete with exclusive interior and exterior appointments for the 2019 model year.

This latest model of the AMG GT family will get all the trappings of the AMG Aerodynamics Package, including larger front splitter and integrated flics in the front bumper, optimized diffuser and fixed rear spoiler with mechanically adjustable angle.

The paintwork in designo Graphite Grey Magno immediately captures the attention of anyone who’ll see the car. There are AMG sports stripes in matte Graphite Grey on the sides, as well as above the side sill panels, on the hood, roof, and the decklid. Finishing off the whole look is the 21-inch AMG cross-spoke forged wheels painted in matte black and with a high-sheen finish.

Inside the car, you’ll find AMG multicontour performance seats with memory package. These are upholstered in exclusive Nappa leather in Magma Grey/Black with yellow contrasting topstitching. Topping off the whole look of the seats are yellow seatbelts. Even the door center panels and armrests in the door and the center console are in Nappa leather in Magma Grey.

The AMG performance steering wheel is in DINAMICA microfiber with yellow contrasting topstitching, yellow 12 o’clock marking, and “Edition 1” badge. Other important things to note are the illuminated AMG door sill panels and the floor mats in black with the AMG badge.

The Edition 1 is exclusive to the GT 63 S four-door’s top-of-the-range model, which features the handcrafted AMG 4.0-liter V8 biturbo engine with an output of 630 hp and 664 lb-ft of torque. It has a top speed of 195 mph and can go 0 to 60 mph in just 3.1 seconds.

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