Sunday 28 January 2007

Smart ForTwo in Madrid

These are the first photos of the new Smart ForTwo caught in Madrid. The vehicle is production ready and will go on sale across Europe in April - September with a price tag of £6,500.
Orders are now being taken.

2007 Peugeot 308

This heavily disguised prototype is the first glimpse of next year's family hatchback from Peugeot: the 308. Under a whole marquee's worth of black plastic cladding lies a conventional high-roof five-door - a look pioneered by today's 307.We won't see the production 308 until 2008, but our spies have brought you the first details on this important new hatch direct from Sweden, where Peugeot is cold-weather testing in the snow.
It is heavily disguised, but look closely and you can make out some interesting details. The 308 has an MPV-style, stretched forward scuttle, so there's a big windscreen and what look like quarterlight windows ahead of the door mirrors.
The high roofline should guarantee decent interior space (like in today's 307), and if the hatchback isn't roomy enough, you can always wait for the SW estate version; a folding tin-top 308 CC model is also scheduled for production along with an mini SUV with no 4WD system and a minivan dubbed as 3008 later in 2008 or 2009. Although you can't quite make out the grille in this disguised prototype, one source claimed that Peugeot's gaping-mouth grille would be toned down on the new model.
Peugeot and Citroen continue with their three-platform strategy; every new model will use one of their core platforms, with exceptions for third-party collaborations like this summer's 4007, produced in partnership with Mitsubishi.
So the 308 will remain on the PF2 medium-car component set; it's the same as the Citroen C4, and means front-wheel drive, the option of an automated manual gearbox and a suite of petrol and diesel engines from 1.4 up to 2.0 litres.The 307 won the 2002 European Car of the Year gong, but never scored criticial acclaim, lacking the dynamics of the Focus, the quality of the Golf and the sharp looks of the Astra. With the 308, it aims to close that gap...

2007 Citroen C5 Caught Cold

These are the very first photos of the next Citroen C5. Despite the heavy bin liner disguise the roofline and the overall shape of the car can just about be made out. The current C5 only comes in two body styles a hatchback (which can easily be mistakan for a sedan) and a mid-sized stationwagon and for the first time there could be a sedan for the next generation.
All though, a pre-production model was caught undisguise in France a while ago. The impression and the undisguised pre-production model look very alike. Unlike its competitors, the next C5 should look sporty and sleek.
As for the engines, the diesels will be kept as they are the European favorties but petrol engines will change. We currently don't know what they are so I guess that Citroen could be keeping the range topping 3.0i V6.
The 2 photo are showing a prototype which is a hatchback undegoing cold weather testing in Northern Scandinavia

Sunday 14 January 2007

2008 Mini Traveller Caught Undisguised

BMW testers have stripped away most of the camouflage from their prototypes of the MINI Traveller. This latest look not only gives us our best glimpse of the newest model from MINI, it also puts to rest once-and-for-all some questions about its packaging and configuration. The clean, uncamouflaged windows and body-sides clearly reveal different pillar configurations for the driver- and passenger-sides. The driver-side has only one door, and a long uninterrupted expanse of glass between the B- and C-pillars. The passenger-side gets a rear-hinged, suicide rear access door, which requires an additional pillar that is visible through the driver-side glass. Unless a driver-side suicide door will be offered as an option (which is highly unlikely), rear-seaters will want to load up from the passenger-side. This past summer, we snapped the first pix of the Traveller's rear double doors in place of a conventional hatchback, and the rear cut-line is now clearly visible on this latest prototype.
Seeing the Traveller in something very close to finished form, it's clear that this larger MINI fits in well with the rest of the MINI model range. The Traveller's longer footprint adds extra versatility, but the MINI look remains intact. We expect the MINI Traveller to make its official debut at the Geneva Motor Show this spring.

*** This prototype looks like a U.S spec model. Check out the orange reflectors on the wheels arches (front & rear) ***
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