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The New Ford Focus RS Will Be A Hybrid

ford focus rs

Ford is planning for another RS-badged Focus as the current generation Ford Focus RS is preparing to stop production by April 6 this year. The next-generation Focus RS will reportedly be a hybrid that can produce up to 400 horsepower.

Dutch publication Auto International started the rumor last week when it reported that the next-generation Focus RS will have a 48-volt, mild-hybrid system that will boost the power production of the vehicle. That is reason enough for the RS-badged Focus to be able to choke out a nice 400 horsepower output.

The current-generation Ford Focus RS produces 350 horsepower, though a 370-horsepower version was also available, thanks to a Mountune performance kit. The 370-horsepower Focus RS was aptly called the Focus RS Heritage Edition.

The same report said that the current 2.3-liter turbocharged inline-4 engine will be carried over to the next-generation Focus, but it is believed that the hybrid will have a bigger starter motor that will seriously boost the powertrain capability. Aside from the 400-horsepower output, the new Focus RS will allegedly also come up with an additional 44 pound-feet of torque, bringing the total to 394 pound-feet of torque.

These are just rumors, of course, but there’s credence to it since Ford plans to electrify most of its vehicles in the coming years. In fact, it even teased a future battery-electric performance crossover that would carry the “Mach 1” name. There was also a report that a hybrid version of the Mustang and F-150 might be coming out.

Jim Farley, executive vice president and president for global markets, earlier said that Ford plans to distribute seven fully-electric cars in North America by 2022. This might be the start of that project.

There’s no timeline as to when the next-generation Focus RS will come out. What we do know is that the next hatchback will make its bow at the 2018 Geneva Auto Show. The sedan version might make its debut at the 2018 New York Motor Show.

Hyundai Reveals “Hottest Ever Hatch” To The Market Through The Veloster N

2019 hyundai veloster (3)

Aren’t we all excited what Hyundai has in store for us when it introduced the new N performance sub-brand? Well, here it is in the form of the 2019 Veloster N. It’s not only truly capable on the road, but it looks so good too.

Hyundai has high aspirations when it comes to producing the “hottest hatch ever,” and it  horsepower, thanks to its turbocharged inline-4 engine and sportier chassis, it also has a more aggressive look. Overall, the new hatchback from the South Korean automaker falls somewhere between sport compacts such as Volkswagen Golf GTI and Honda Civic Si and the more powerful Golf R and Civic Type R.

2019 hyundai veloster (2)

If you are familiar with the Europe-only market i30 N, the Veloster N almost looks similar to that. It is, in fact, available in the same Performance Blue paint with red trims on the front fascia and side skirts. The colors black, red, and white are also available. There’s an N badge on the grille, making sure everyone knows you’re not driving just any Hyundai out there.

2019 hyundai veloster (13)

The power is coming from a turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-four that can produce up to 275 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque, almost the same figures with the i30 N. This engine is paired with a 6-speed manual transmission while an electronically controlled limited-slip differential is optional equipment.

Enthusiasts will also be welcoming a slew of new performance features such as adaptive dampers, launch-control capability, automatic rev matching, and a variable exhaust. There are five driving modes, including an “N” that is meant for the race track.

2019 hyundai veloster (9)

Like the idea of large wheels? You can choose between an 18-inch base wheel wrapped in 225-series Michelin Pilot Super Sport performance tires and an optional 19-inch wheel has wider, 235-series Pirelli P Zero rubber.

There are no pricing details yet, but we’ll expect the Veloster N to play in the range of $25,000 to $30,000.

Photo Source: Autoblog

2018 Honda Civic Type-R: It’s Not Only for Racing, It’s Also Practical

honda civic type-r

The 2018 Honda Civic Type-R is best known for its performance. It is the world’s fastest production front-wheel drive car today.

The hot hatch is equipped with a 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-four engine. The unit produces 306 hp. The power goes to the front wheels via a six-speed manual gearbox. That allows the car to accelerate from zero to 60 mph in just 4.9 seconds. Then, its top speed is electronically-locked at 170 mph.

The Civic Type-R exudes an air of aggressiveness, thanks to its extended front bumper complete with black mesh and lip spoiler, air intakes, side skirts, protruding rear bumper, rear wing, rear diffuser, triple exhaust pipes, and sports wheels.

Due to the mentioned factors, most buyers tend to overlook the practical side of the car. So here is a list of things that make the Civic Type-R ideal for every day driving:

1. Fuel Efficient

The hot hatch may not be Honda’s most fuel-efficient car out there. But its combined fuel-consumption is 22/28 mpg. According to TorqueNews, you can also fill it with your regular unleaded gasoline because of its engine’s low compression.

2. Its Manual Transmission is Easy to Use

Driving a manual may take away the convenience brought about by the ease of operation provided by automatic and CVT gearboxes. On the good side, an MT gives the driver a good feel of the vehicle’s power. That’s why most car purists prefer it.

The Civic Type-R’s MT is easy to learn. It has the always-on torque feature that makes shifting in city drives very minimal. In addition, the center display has indicators that help the driver determine when to shift gears.

3. Comfortable Interior

Despite the compact appearance of the Civic Type-R, it actually has a decent space in its cabin. The front has a total headroom of 39.3 inches and total legroom of 42.3 inches. The back offer an overall headroom and legroom of 37.4 inches and 35.9 inches, respectively. The rear seats can be folded to accommodate more of your haul from the grocery or your baggage.

The sports front seats possess that cozy feel in them. Then the center console has a 7.0-inch digital gauge cluster that manages the drive modes of the hatch as well as information on navigation, G-force meter, lap timer and shift lights.

Top 5 Things About the 2018 Volkswagen Golf Lineup

volkswagen golf

The Volkswagen Golf range just got a series of updates for its 2018 models. There were some noticeable visual changes in the car and popping up the hood of some of its models will reveal upgrades in the engine department.

The Golf is one of the resilient models of the Volkswagen brand. The car has been around since 1974. The auto is currently in its seventh generation.

The present generation of the VW Golf was introduced in 2012. However, its maker introduced gradual updates in its look and performance along the way to keep it fresh during its production cycle.

Here are the major changes in the VW Golf based on TopSpeed:

1. Volkswagen Golf Hatch

The VW Golf hatchback is receiving a 1.8-liter turbo engine. It produces 170 hp mated to a five-speed manual gearbox or six-speed DSG. The car is available in S and SE trims. The S is equipped with “Lyon” alloy wheels. Going for the SE gets you a set of full LED lights, fog lioghts, panoramic tilting sunroof and 16-inch “Toronto” wheels.

2. Volkswagen Golf Wagon

The wagon variants are available in S, SE and SEL trims. The SE and SEL each takes an 8-inch touchscreen. All the wagons get LED DRLs, automatic headlamps and a new shade of green in the finish.

3. Volkswagen Golf GTI

The GTI is offered with a 2.0-liter engine. It gets a 10 hp bump compared to its predecessor, which brings its output up to 220 hp. The power of the car is distributed via a six-speed manual or six-speed DSG.

The vehicle is sold in three trims namely the S, SE and Autobahn. The upgrades in the Performance Package are available in the SE and Autobahn as a standard fit plus safety features like the VAQ Electronic Limited Slip Differential, auto emergency braking and forward collision warning. The Autobahn is also fitted with High beam Control, Lane departure Warning, updated maneuver braking and others.

4. Volkswagen Golf R

The range-topping Golf R packs a 2.0-liter engine with 292 hp paired with either a seven-speed DSG or six-speed manual. Included in the trim are 19-inch “Englishtown” aluminum alloy wheels, DCC Adaptive Cruise Control and 8-inch infotainment system with the brand’s Digital Cockpit.

5. Pricing

The starting prices of the Golf models are:

  • $21,760 for the Hatch.
  • $22,535 for the SportWagen.
  • $26,845 for the Alltrack.
  • $27,265 for the GTI.
  • $40,635 for the R.

Top 3 Things About The New Suzuki Swift Sport Hatchback

suzuki swift (14)

It’s honestly cute as a button, so is it any wonder why the Suzuki Swift Sport Hatchback remains to be a favorite in whatever market it is in. The Swift Sport Hatchback looks like the Mini Cooper minus that expensive price tag. Perhaps, that’s where its appeal comes from.

Since it was introduced to the market back in 2005, the Swift Sport has been a favorite. It remains to be one today, though there are lots of competitions out there.

1. Powertrain

Because this is not your usual Swift, the Sport hatchback weighs 2,100 pounds and receives some muscles through the turbocharged 1.4-liter inline-four that can deliver 138 horsepower. It is paired with a six-speed manual transmission that works well with the front-wheel drive system.

To experience on-road smoothness and maneuverability, the Suzuki Swift Sport Hatchback is also equipped with 17-inch wheels while its tires are 1.6 inches wider than the previous and current generations. Why do the tires have to be wider? These will help the car for high-speed stability.

2. Exterior

Who doesn’t love how the Swift Sport Hatchback looks? For anyone who cannot purchase a Mini Cooper, here’s your next best thing. Now that the car has been upgraded, the grille and the front intakes are larger and angrier-looking than the regular model’s. There are also two big exhaust outlets that can be seen from the rear bumper.

3. Safety

It may be tiny, but the Swift is looking after its driver and passengers. Among its suite of active-safety tech are automated emergency braking and lane departure warning.

The Suzuki Swift Sport Hatchback can compete with the Ford Fiesta ST, but unfortunately for American consumers, they won’t ever get their hands on a Suzuki since this has pulled out from American shores years ago. For whatever reason, the brand failed to capture the American market.

3 Variants Stand Out For The 2018 Mazda 3

mazda 3 sedan and hatchback

The new Mazda 3 may not be as popular as Honda Civic right now, especially when it comes to the Si and Type R variants, but it has an appeal that cannot be denied, too. As the Civic’s direct competitor, the Mazda 3 added new standard equipment to its lineup and made the powerful 2.5-liter engine more readily available.

1. Sport Variant 

The Sport variant of the compact sedan is powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that can produce 155 horsepower at 6000 rpm and 150 lb-ft of torque at 4000 rpm. It comes with a six-speed manual transmission and a $18,970 price tag. The six-speed auto transmission will add $1,050 and the hatchback style has a $1,250 premium.

The standard equipment would be an automated emergency braking (available across all variants), 7.0-inch infotainment screen, Bluetooth phone and audio, push-button start, and cloth seats. With the $1,000 Preferred Equipment package, owners can also get blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert plus 16-inch alloy wheels (standard for the hatchback), satin chrome interior trim, and heated side mirrors with turn-signal lamps.

2. Touring Variant

The Touring has a new 2.5-liter engine that has an output of 184 horsepower at 5700 rpm and 185 lb-ft of torque at 3250 rpm. The price tag starts at $20,965 with the hatchback version adding $750 on top of that.

Standard equipment includes leatherette seats with heated front, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, rain-sensing windshield wipers, automatic headlights, dual-zone automatic climate control, a new dark silver alloy wheel color, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob.

For an additional $1,500, owners can get a nine-speaker Bose audio system, SiriusXM satellite radio, and a sunroof.

3. Grand Touring Variant

Mazda 3’s loaded version has a starting price of $24,020 with a six-speed manual transmission but for $24,770, you can have it in the hatchback version with manual gearbox. An automatic transmission adds another $1,050.

The Grand Touring will have all the standard and optional equipment on the lower trims, plus black or off-white leather seats, a color head-up display, and all-LED exterior lighting. If you want more, there’s the $1,600 Premium Equipment package that will add navigation, adaptive cruise control, lane-departure warning and lane-keeping assist, and traffic-sign recognition, plus adaptive front headlights, a heated steering wheel, and paddle shifters (with the automatic transmission).

Expect the Mazda 3 to arrive this month.

3 Major Expectations With The High Performance Toyota Yaris

toyota yaris (2)

When it comes to the Toyota Yaris, not many people give it attention these days. It is, after all, merely a car, something that gets you from Point A to Point B. Nothing more, nothing less. But that’s about to change as Toyota previewed a high performance (unnamed) Yaris that will soon be available for the European market.

There is not much information available for this new Yaris. It doesn’t even have a name at this point. What we do know is that it’s going to produce more than the 106 horsepower the current generation can.


At 2,400 pounds for the hatchback, the redesigned Yaris can apparently produce 207 horsepower based on a report. That’s a pretty good pull for such a heavy hatchback, but we’ll see more of that once the car got tested on the road.

Based on these specifications, we’re guessing that the power will come from a turbocharged four-cylinder engine. That would only be the only possible reason that the subcompact can pull off a 207 horsepower.

According to Toyota, the car also has an upgraded chassis that will improve the handling. We are not sure yet what it means this time, though.


The new Yaris fits the European market nicely. It looks sportier than the current model and it has that edge that almost makes it look like a (lesser) Mini Cooper, in a way.

The redesigned Yaris is based on the two-door version of the hatch. It will now come with sharp-looking wheels, a rear spoiler, and graphics in red and black. There are also revisions at the front and rear styling.


It’s not yet clear of this Yaris will be brought to the United States. If it does, it will compete directly with the Ford Fiesta ST, the Mini Cooper S, and the Fiat 500 Abarth.

toyota yaris (1)

Spy Shots Of 2019 Audi S7 Emerge


The second generation Audi S7 was spotted being tested on the road, and it reminds us of the large, four-door hatchback or “Sportback” body found in the Mercedes CLS Coupe, the BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe and the Audi A7 Sportback in 2010.

This is the first time the second-generation Audi S7 was spotted in the wild, so we are sure there will be plenty of surprises in future spy shots. The prototype has a strong resemblance to the Prologue Avant Concept since it has the same stretched-out hexagonal grille and small but dominating corner air intakes.

For now, the fascia is still incomplete, so we’re yet to see if it will sport the proper grille or intake inserts. Up front, you’ll also notice the thin headlights, and this is a big thing because the lower, outer corner of the headlamps on the current S7 dips down. But on this model, the bottom edge of the light is flat while the top edge follows the hood. It is a much cleaner look, and would look great once the camouflage comes off the prototype.

On the sides, the Audi S7 has the same distinct body line on the bottom of the door between the two wheel arches. The mirrors are a little shorter and the rear quarter panels are extended outward, which along with the low body height, gives the vehicle rather a “sitting pretty” look. The roof is very much a true “Sportback” while the sharp body line on the rear quarters fade as it gets closer to the headlights.

There’s a new pair of taillights at the rear end. These are thinner than the current model, and have a more rounded contour on the top and the outside edges. As for the rear fascia, it’s not too different from the current model.

There’s no report yet on the powertrain of the new S7, though it may have the same 4.0-liter V-8, except that a little tweak can power it up to 470 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque.

Pricing for the S7 might be $80,500 for the entry model and $85,000 for the prestige.

Renault Introduces Clio RS16

Last month, Renault gave a sneak peek of its new Clio RS16 concept car, and we were mightily impressed by the performance engine it came with. We expected Renault to soon introduce the production version, and this week was apparently the right time for us to see the latest in Renault’s series of Clio RS hatchbacks.

The RS in the RS16 stands for Renault Sport, the French automaker’s official performance arm. It includes both the road car division Renault Sports Cars and the motorsport division Renault Sport Racing, which makes up Renault’s Formula One team.

The Clio RS16 is born out of a collaboration between these two divisions. Based on the fourth generation of the compact Clio, the new RS16 is available in two options—a standard model with 200 horsepower and the sportier Clio RS Trophy with 220 horsepower.

Both of these versions come packed with a turbocharged 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine with front wheel drive and six-speed dual-clutch transmission.

But what’s unique to this particular segment is the choice of three chassis setups—Sport, Cup and Trophy settings. The Trophy setup is the most powerful one with the ride height getting lowered by 20 millimeters at the front and 10 millimeters at the rear. It gets finished with 18-inch wheels, which would come as standard.

According to Renault, the new Clio RS16 can go 0-62mph in 6.6 seconds. Top speed is believed to be 146 mph, though the automaker also claims that there is a 14.5-second elapsed time for the quarter mile.

All of these Clio RS16 models will get a body kit with front splitter, side sills, roof-mounted spoiler and rear diffuser. The models also have the R.S. Vision, a checkered flag pattern for the LED fog lights.

Once you go inside, you’ll find the shift paddles for transmission, launch control function, RS infotainment system, and drive modes selector—Normal, Sport and Race settings.

Kia Plans To Introduce Turbocharged Kia Soul Hatchback

kia soul

Kia Soul has been highly popular the past years. Although I am personally not a fan of the bodystyle and there are extreme reactions to it among the auto industry experts, it was certainly one of Kia’s most popular models.

In fact, the only thing more popular than the Soul is the commercials Kia has produced for the incoming hatchback. Aside from the catchy hit songs that they used, the commercials also featured hamsters (which Kia tagged as Hamstars). Can anything be cuter than that?

The latest commercial is now out and it’s full of the same things—catchy song and Hamstars. But what specifically is being talked about right now is the “wink” at the end of the commercial, hinting of the possibility of a turbocharged Soul hatchback.

An overview of the current Soul lineup was also shown at the end of the video. The lineup included the regular gasoline-powered model, the electric model and a “turbo” version. Kia teased that all of these will be arriving just in time for Winter 2016.

We’ve heard rumors that Kia has been planning a turbocharged Soul hatchback for years. So far, this is the first evidence of those plans, and it’s just in time for a change in the Soul’s performance and power.

As for the bodystyle, many experts have always raved about the Soul’s standout styling, roomy interior and useful in-car technology. That’s not to mention that the Soul is nicely priced.

But what it does lack is more power and better performance on the road. The current Soul has either a gas-powered 130-hp 1.6-liter or a 164-hp 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine, the latter offered only with automatic transmission.

What are we expecting? Kia currently has a 201-hp 1.6-liter turbo four on the Forte5. If that would be used to turbocharge the hatchback, we’re sure it will add a bit of pep, complete with either a manual or dual-clutch auto transmission.

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