Sunday, 27 August 2006

2007 Lancia Ypsilon Facelift

Polished Letter

It’s has been quite some time since spy-shots of a Lancia prototype have surfaced, but here are the first pictures of the facelifted Lancia Ypsilon, due to be presented at the Geneva Show in March next year.

It is believed the engines and other mechanical systems will be left untouched, but the grille and the bumpers front and rear will get an overhaul losing the massive black plastic bars.
Headlamps and taillights as well as the fog-lights appear to be re-shaped, too, and we assume the Ypsilon’s interior will be freshened-up as well.

Saturday, 26 August 2006

2008 Volkswagen Tiguan SUV

Volkswagen announced the official name of its new compact SUV last month, and now we bring you the first unofficial video of the 2009 Volkswagen Tiguan. Caught during hot-weather testing in Death Valley, California, the Tiguan shares its platform with the Rabbit and GTI hatchbacks. Power for base models will come from the same 200bhp 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder used in the GTI with an upgrade to VW's 3.6-litre V6 a possible option.

The ForMotion all-wheel-drive system used in both the Passat and the upcoming R32 could be standard if Volkswagen wants to position the Tiguan further upscale than typical compacts like the Toyota RAV4 and Honda CR-V, both of which offer lower-cost front-wheel-drive models. Although European versions will have a manual transmission as standard, U.S versions will get a six-speed Direct Shift Gearbox as the sole option. Although the Tiguan is based on the Concept A, what little of the cabin we could see showed a fairly typical dash layout. There may be a few upgrades added to give the Tiguan a unique look and feel compared to its Rabbit and GTI cousins, but other than a few minor trim changes it will be a standard-issue Volkswagen design.

A third-row seat won't be available, but it looks as though second-row passenger room will be generous by compact-SUV standards. And just in case you're wondering, the name "Tiguan" is a made-up combination of "tiger" and "iguana." Volkswagen decided on the name after polling readers of a European automotive publication. Dr. Wolfgang Bernhard, Volkswagen's chairman, called it a "unique event [that is] demonstrative of how Volkswagen is opening up."

We call it a unique look at how clueless Volkswagen is when it comes to selling SUVs in the U.S. We won't see how the Tiguan name goes over here in the States for another two years as production doesn't begin until 2008.

Monday, 21 August 2006

New Car: 2007 Skoda Octavia Scout

Here it is. The Skoda Octavia Scout. This should be different from the Octavia 4x4 sold in Europe. I hope this has an all wheel drive (AWD). No information on it yet but prices around £16,500. Plastic SUV styled bodykit gives it a proper SUV look. Overall, it looks nice, modern and stylish and I won't mind owning one either.

Sunday, 20 August 2006

2007 Mercedes GL63 AMG

Mercedes GL 63 AMG:

While Daimler-Chrysler’s largest new off roader GL-Class just about to arrive in dealerships, the even more powerful AMG version is currently being tested in the streets of Stuttgart. Just like all AMG models, it can be recognized from the two large double exhaust pipes and sportier air intakes in the front skirt It will also be equipped with a 6.3 litre V8 engine.

2007 Volkswagen CrossGolfPlus?

Thats right! Volkswagen is planning another crossover or SUV. Its believed that the VW GolfPlus will get another brother set to be called "CrossGolf" or "CrossGolfPlus". This CGI suggest that the new vehicle will be a GolfPlus but with SUV body kit.

I don't know where this will fit into the range because we have the CrossFox, CrossPolo, Tiguan (Golf based SUV) and last but not least Toaureg. If this will be put into production prices will start from £13,500 in the UK.

New Car: 2006 Fiat Doblo Adventure

Intended for the Brazilian market is the all-new Fiat Doblo Adventure. Based upon the very popular Doblo compact commercial van, the Adventure has plastic bodykit, giving the impression of a faux-4x4. Revised front bumper, roof-rails, external spare wheel and side-steps will be standard.

Availability of engines is only restricted to a petrol, which is mated to a manual transmission.

Wednesday, 16 August 2006

Next generation Kia Sorento spied?

Although the current Sorento just underwent a facelift, Kia is already testing the next-generation SUV. This time, as is obvious in these pictures, the Sorento is growing to accommodate three rows of seating. In addition to the larger size, the Sorento will also move upscale.

New Car: 2007 Mini Cooper & Cooper S

Due to enter the market in late 2006, the MINI Cooper is powered by a 1.6-litre normal-aspiration engine developing maximum output of 88 kW/120 hp, the MINI Cooper S comes with an even more powerful and dynamic 128 kW/175 hp turbocharged engine.

The “basic” version, the new MINI One, will be following in the first half of 2007, its 1.4-litre power unit developing maximum output of 70 kW/95 hp. And finally the range will be joined, also in the first half of 2007, by the new MINI Diesel featuring the most advanced and sophisticated turbodiesel technology.

The four-cylinder petrol engines come from a brand-new range of power units developed from a clean sheet of paper and boasting a number of highly innovative technical features. The interior is also brand-new in its design, while the exterior has been through a process of design evolution maintaining the unmistakable character of the MINI. Indeed, the specific features of the car’s body and interior now come out even more convin­cingly, clearly reflecting the typical character of the brand. And together with the modified chassis and suspension, the modern power units further sharpen the already legendary go-kart feeling so characteristic of the modern MINI.
At the same time it is not only the design and drive technology of the new model, but also the wide range of standard equipment and the sophisticated finish, that make the new MINI so unique, reflecting the premium standard of the brand in every respect.
Even more distinctive than before: unmistakable features of MINI design.

In its dimensions, the new MINI has grown slightly over the size of the first generation. The larger dimensions at the front serve inter alia to fulfil future safety standards and requirements, with the new MINI Cooper being 60 millimetres or 2.87´´ longer than its predecessor, the new MINI Cooper S 61 millimetres or 2.36´´ longer.

In the words of MINI’s Chief Designer Gert Hildebrand, “we have set off this increase in size optically by working on various exterior details”. Following the philosophy of “moving from the original to the original”, Hildebrand and his team have re-designed the entire car while preserving and authentically updating the characteristic look of the MINI.

As a result, the new MINI is characterised, as before, by short body over­hangs front and rear as well as large wheels highlighting the muscular sideline of the car. Features naturally retained are the unmistakable high­lights of the MINI such as the hexagonal radiator grille, the large, round headlights moved far to the outside, the complete “band” of glass stretching round the passenger compartment, as well as the diagonal seam between the engine compartment lid and the side direction indicators clearly bearing testimony to the welding seams at the same point on the classic Mini. And another feature virtually natural on the car is the size, position and arrange­ment of the upright, almost vertical rear light clusters.

The front end of the new MINI is also characterised by the position lights and foglamps beneath the main headlights. Indeed, these additional light units serve as “beauty spots” in the face of the new MINI, while the direction indicator lights are now integrated in the headlight units themselves.

The MINI Cooper S differs from the MINI Cooper inter alia through its even more muscular powerdome and its opening in the engine compartment lid. On both model variants, vertical air flow edges on the C-pillars and indivi­dual spoilers at the rear end of the roof enhance the level of aerodynamics to an even higher standard than before.
The typical MINI Center Speedo re-interpreted.

The changes in the interior design of the new MINI are far more significant than on the exterior. Both the design of the control units and the special sur­faces inside the car clearly symbolise the high level of technical excellence and the outstanding premium quality of the new MINI. The dominating geo­metric elements are circles and straight lines skilfully combined with one an­other, round instruments and air vents, for example, being arranged attrac­tively on the dashboard subdivided horizontally into three levels.

This clear focus on clear shapes and design elements gives the interior a particularly sturdy, functional and purist, but also light and generous look. Sophisticated, high-quality materials and soft surface contours, finally, round off the characteristic ambience of the interior in the new MINI.

The most striking and conspicuous feature within the cockpit of the new MINI is the Center Speedo even larger than in the former model. This cen­tral display and control instrument, acknowledged for a long time as an icon in the interior design of the MINI, has not only grown in size, but also in fun­ctional significance.

Hence, the Center Speedo now comprises not only the analogue speedo­meter, but also all entertainment and, as an option, navigation functions. With the entire centre console becoming even slimmer and more subdued as a result, the footwells are correspondingly larger. The door and ignition key, finally, is now a round signal sensor in typical MINI design, with the driv­er pressing a start/stop button to switch the engine on and off.
New petrol engines, complete range of safety features.

Displacing 1.6 litres, the four-cylinder turbocharged power unit of the MINI Cooper S now develops an even more impressive 128 kW/175 hp, the right kind of power to turn the MINI Cooper S into a truly outstanding experience in motoring fun. The engine is boosted in power by means of a twin-scroll turbocharger driven by the separate emission flow from two cylinders at a time. As a result, the turbocharger serves to boost engine power significantly from low engine speeds, providing a truly impressive effect: The 1.6-litre four-cylinder featured in the MINI Cooper S accelerates the car with the kind of power and performance otherwise to be found only in much larger normal-aspiration models.

The MINI Cooper also boasts a 1.6-litre power unit, this time, however, with normal aspiration and maximum output of 88 kW/120 hp. Intake valve con­trol featuring the BMW Group’s unique VALVETRONIC technology is fully variable, valve stroke and opening times being adjusted infinitely and with electronic management to the respective power requirements. This innovative valve control ensures not only a particularly high standard of respon­sive­ness and superior motoring refinement, but also superior fuel economy and optimised emission management.

Compared with the MINI Cooper, the chassis and suspension of the MINI Cooper S is a lot firmer and more dynamic. And as an option both models are available with sports suspension for an even higher standard of fun and enjoyment at the wheel.

Reflecting the MINI’s commitment to premium, both models come with a wide range of safety features. Six airbags, for example, are naturally fea­tured as standard to ensure comprehensive occupant protection on all seats. Active safety of the highest calibre is ensured in critical situations, in turn, by ABS anti-lock brakes, EBD Electronic Brake Force Distribution, CBC Cornering Brake Control, ASC+T Automatic Stability Control + Traction standard on the Cooper S and with on-off control by the driver, as well as DSC Dynamic Stability Control.

The Brake Assistant in the new MINI reliably detects application of the brakes in an emergency and builds up maximum brake pressure at the fastest conceivable rate. Yet another new function is Hill Assist uphill starting-off assistance combined with DSC, which activates the brakes when setting off on a gradient to prevent the car from rolling back.

The new MINI takes up the overwhelming success of its predecessor already accounting for sales of more than 800,000 units and immensely popular among a growing community of MINI aficionados the world over. And applying the high standards of quality, technology and safety con­sist­ently upheld by the BMW Group, the new MINI, more than ever before, underlines its claim to leadership in this segment.

Monday, 14 August 2006

2007 Kia Cee'd On The Streets

These are the very first photos of the Kia Cee'd on the streets of Korea. The car looks smaller than the European Ford Focus, VW Golf and Vauxhall/Opel Astra but it could still win our European hearts with its good looks and hopefully low prices. More info on the way soon.

Mazda 3 MPS Splashes Onto The Scene

It all starts with the sporting style and dynamic driving DNA of the renowned Mazda3. Add formidable turbocharged power, a specially tuned chassis and a more purposeful, aggressive stance on the road. And the result? The hottest hatch we've ever built, the Mazda3 MPS. Welcome to Zoom-Zoom, taken to the limit.With its compact, lightweight body, maximum power of 190kW @ 5,500rpm and maximum torque of 380Nm @ 3,000rpm, Mazda3 MPS is one of the highest performance small cars with front-wheel drive on the road today. The 2.3 litre Direct Injection Spark Ignition turbocharged engine is capable of propelling the Mazda3 MPS from 0 to 100km/h in just 6.1 seconds."Mazda3 MPS dramatically reinforces the acclaimed dynamics of the original Mazda3 and delivers maximum driving pleasure through outstanding performance and superior chassis performance," said Tatsuo Maeda, Programme Manager.Like the new Mazda3, the Mazda3 MPS features a body with high rigidity. The Mazda3 MPS is based on the Mazda3 Hatch, with local reinforcements added to realise a body sufficiently stiff and robust to stand up to the extra demands of sporty driving. Suspension and brakes have also been specially tuned for the Mazda3 MPS. These improvements assure a body and chassis capable of easily handling the extremely high power delivered by the 2.3 DISI turbo engine.

Saturday, 5 August 2006

Update: 2007 Fiat Stilo

As far as we know, the next Fiat Stilo will be sharing the same platform as the next Lancia Delta.

This seems to be the clearest picture yet of what the Ford Focus competitor could look like. Compared to the current car it seems more sleek, stylish, sexy and modern.

Sources have also told us that the 2008 Fiat Multipla will be sharing the same platform as these two cars. Front radiator grille has clearly been taken of the Fiat Grande Punto as the Grande Punto is exceeding sale limits.

2007 Bentley CrossContinental (SUV) Caught

According to insider information the famous Volkswagen-owned British car maker Bentley is about to go off road. Dubbed “Cross Continental” the new model is set to rival the Porsche Cayenne, VW Touareg, Cadillac Escalade and Lincoln Navigator.
Hardly known, but the first steps into the SUV market were already made by Bentley years ago when they built just one Range Rover-based 4x4 named Dominator for some very rich and famous celebrity – back then.

Now that the luxury SUV market does not show any signs of slowing down but rather keeps going, Bentley is about to develop a genuine production 4x4 SUV, this time based on the next generation VW Touareg-Porsche Cayenne platform. Development of this platform is currently being tested by using various existing Cayenne mules. The Bentley 4x4 SUV is expected to be powered by a 6.0 litre Twin Turbo W12 engine from the Bentley Continental GT delivering 560 HP.

Its estimated price tag is 120.000 British Pounds. Speculations suggest that at least a concept car for the new model could debut at the 2007 Frankfurt Motor Show.

Peugeot 4007 & Citroen C-Crosser feels the heat

At the 2005 motorshow in Tokyo, Mitsubishi launched the new Outlander while the French car maker PSA was developing a new and first 4x4 model based on this new Outlander platform. It is expected to be launched under the Peugeot and Citroën badges and dubbed 4007 and C-Crosser respectively. For this project, PSA has searched and found in Mitsubishi an experienced partner particularly for off road models.

Recently, a group of engineers from Japan and France were sighted testing the two new models side by side in the roaring heat of Southern Spain. The Peugeot 4007 and Citroën C-Crosser are scheduled for launch in 2007. They will be manufactured by Mitsubishi and engines will be supplied by both PSA and Mitsubishi. Talk is of a Mitsubishi based engine (2.4 litre 170bhp) and a PSA diesel engine (2.0 litre HDI 136bhp). The Mitsubishi Outlander is already available in Japan and is arriving in the United States in late 2006.

Plans for the Peugeot 4007 and Citroën C-Crosser are to produce 30,000 units with Peugeot setting a modest 2,000 units per year for the UK. The cars are expected to cost between €20,000 and €30,000.

Friday, 4 August 2006

2007 Audi TT RS Coupe?

Well it could be or it might be a sporty looking Audi TT. Well, we car nuts don't actually know what this car is but my guess is that it is an actual TT RS testing mule. Compare the test car to the impression (below) the cars look pretty similar.

On the front, you will notice Audi's soprty grille below the raditator grille and you will also notice large air vents behind the front fog lamps.

As for the rear, there is a foruth brake light on the sporty moulding of the bumper below the license plate and one thing that clearly visiable is the alloy wheels
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