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TopCar GLE INFERNO Coupe – Wide, Low and Ready to Brawl!

Wide, low and in a full blackout!?  Am i looking in a mirror or at the hottest GLE upgrade on the market? Updated 3.28.16 with live photos TopCar is taking its Porsche love to new heights in 2016: a major stand at the Geneva show set the brand on level footing with other supertuners like Brabus, KAHN Design and Novitec Group.   TopCar is focused on all Porsche models, clearly, but also now with great new upgrades for Range Rover, BMW and Mercedes SUVs. The latest creation?  An AMG GLE dubbed the INFERNO! Bold names are not something TopCar needs help …

Read more TopCar GLE INFERNO Coupe – Wide, Low and Ready to Brawl!

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2016 GENESIS New York Concept – Design Analysis, Live Photos + Flyaround Video

The standalone launch of the GENESIS brand is in full swing: unique showrooms, unique models of course, and a unique mission to snag high-margin sales from Lexus and BMW. The offshoot is one that has mixed history: Acura is a constant drain on Honda with little upside, as is Infiniti on its Nissan parent. Mazda’s mooted entry with the Amati luxury brand was killed before its launch model, the Millenia, even broke cover. Why? The costs are astronomical and the returns are — as proven — less than a sure thing. Hyundai’s rise from punchline to top-five global automaker in …

Read more 2016 GENESIS New York Concept – Design Analysis, Live Photos + Flyaround Video

#NYIAS – 2017 JEEP Grand Cherokee Trailhawk and Summit (+Visual Comparo vs 2015)

Jeep just revealed its updated 2017 Grand Cherokee look with two fresh trim levels: the Trailhawk and Summit. These specials are the most hardcore off-road, and most soft-core luxury, variants of the broad GC lineup.  They introduce a new shape for the seven-slot grille that is slimmer than before, and integrates new bumpers and a few other tweaks. New LED fogs in the Summit model are great SRT-inspired elements.  The new mid-nose below the grille drops the smiling accent crease in favor of a chunkier, body-color pair of cheekbones below each headlamp. As before, LED DRLs are not standard but …

Read more #NYIAS – 2017 JEEP Grand Cherokee Trailhawk and Summit (+Visual Comparo vs 2015)

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2016 Lincoln NAVIGATOR Concept (+Video and Live Photos)

  First look this morning at a *stunning* vision for the future Lincoln Navigator. Innovative and super-posh throughout, as you would expect, but also extremely elegant outside and in.  The most striking element at first sight is the clean and all-new styling for the nose, tail, glasshouse and panel surfaces.  Most elements of the truck-based model are banished in favor of a million-mile first class airline experience.  This extends to the giant showcar gullwing doors, of course, but also to the lower panels and the design in total.  As though a Range Rover and Bentayga met in a bar and …

Read more 2016 Lincoln NAVIGATOR Concept (+Video and Live Photos)

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MANIFESTO Wins Ferrari Top Design Challenge 2015

Ferrari crowned the winner of its latest Top Design Challenge recently… and it is not the one you would think! Nor the one with the most votes online.  The popular vote went to deEsfera, but the unanimous jury selection — MANIFESTO — came in fourth online.     MANIFESTO by ISD-RUBIKA out of France was the absolute winner of the challenge.  The judges loved its fully-developed powertrain, cabin packaging and innovative inside-out appearance for the floating rear canopy.  This giant space between the rear wheels and the inner chassis/engine compartment appears to have been the defining design element adored by …

Read more MANIFESTO Wins Ferrari Top Design Challenge 2015

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2017 Toyota 86 – First Look At Revamped FR-S + Corolla iM and Yaris iA

The Scion FR-S will live on, of course, in the Toyota range with a new name and style for 2017. Dubbed just the 86 — versus GT86 in Euorpe and elsewhere — the car has aggressive new LEDs for the nose and tail.  All-new lighting is complemented by a fresh nose appearance, without the lower amber blinker bulbs. Looks like these we’re relocated up into the main light units.  Slick new taillamps are sexy too, but the tail does lacks the fresh bumper treatment of the nose.  But integrated LED rear turn signals are a nice upgrade along with the …

Read more 2017 Toyota 86 – First Look At Revamped FR-S + Corolla iM and Yaris iA

2017 SPYKER C8 Preliator – Sharp 3rd-Gen Exotic is Coming to America!

The world’s most curious supercar made a glittery debut in Geneva and is now on the way to the New York auto show! This return to the USA for Spyker is a pretty big deal.  As we all know, this market can be make-or-break for low-volume manufacturers.  Spyker’s new Coventry factory puts in in great company: Morgan, Aston Martin, McLaren and Jaguar are fairly closeby. Hopefully this localization helps Spyker navigate its way back onto US roads as well as our auto shows! On to the main event: the new PRELIATOR! This means warrior in Latin and marks the third …

Read more 2017 SPYKER C8 Preliator – Sharp 3rd-Gen Exotic is Coming to America!

Design Talent Showcase – Alfa Romeo AW30 by Olcay Tuncay Karabulut

  Some fantastic, out-of-this-world designs to feature today from Turkey! Olcay Karabulut’s Alfa Romeo AW30 design takes a look into the future of renewable-powered racecars.  And not just coal-fired EVs… this AW30 hopes to hit 200-mph around the world’s racetracks thanks to two constants: sun and wind. The solar component is intended as the solution under 100-mph, after which it synthesizes energy via dedicated turbines.  This might sound far-fetched, but is certainly worth exploring.  If only for the unique design solutions it inspired. The proportions take a radical shift: much longer and lower than current F1 cars.  Next, the intakes …

Read more Design Talent Showcase – Alfa Romeo AW30 by Olcay Tuncay Karabulut

2017 Bugatti CHIRON – Colors Visualizer – 50 Shades of 300mph BOSS!

Excitement around the all-new Bugatti Chiron is palpable in the car world.  Ahead of first arrivals to the lucky few owners later in 2016, we’re prepared a three-angle look at the Chiron in more than 70 different colors. Most of these are screencapped drafts along the way in Photoshop — those are in the three-column gallery below.  The main, higher-quality renderings are a single layout directly below. Interesting notes?  Beyond the 310-mph Vmax of the speedo??! How gorgeous and special the Chiron is, mostly.  The design itself is sexy, aero-honed and also quite artful.  All at once! The car has …

Read more 2017 Bugatti CHIRON – Colors Visualizer – 50 Shades of 300mph BOSS!

Inside the Dream Factory – McLaren Track22 Product Roadmap

McLaren Automotive is a clear favorite in the supercar world.  Just look at the rocket-like launch trajectory of the firm in just six years!  It is causing serious pain to rivals Ferrari and Lamborghini, all while delivering great pleasure to its growing owner base.  The launches come fast and furious from Woking, however, and it can be confusing.  Or, just irritating… depending on how recently your new McLaren was superseded by an even newer, hotter model. So it is good to hear that there is method to the rapid product rollouts, ultra-short model cycles of McLaren Cars. Track22 is what McLaren …

Read more Inside the Dream Factory – McLaren Track22 Product Roadmap

2016 Dodge Charger SRT392 – Road Test Mega Gallery

Extension of the glowing review just published:  all these stunning photos (and crazy-fun launch videos!) all by themselves. The photos below are still a gallery lightbox on click, but using a single column layout to give you a close look without any clicking.  Cheers. Thanks Dodge.  May I please have some more? =] Drive Video 1       Drive Video 2 2016 Dodge Charger SRT392 – Road Test Mega Gallery http://www.dodge.com/en/  

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HD Road Test Review – 2016 Dodge Charger SRT392 – Balls Deep in the 4.2s ThunderCat!

World Class FAST! The 2016 Dodge Charger SRT392 is a life-changing machine. Normal drives become the highlight of your day.  The remote start is a thunderous event in itself!  Waking the 6.4-liter, 485-horsepower HEMI V8 happens with pure raging fury. Hence, our loving ThunderCat nickname! The 2016 Charger is an instant Best-of Award winner.  A week in this car is enough to make anyone feel like a man’s man.  Women included.  It puts hair on your chest and a baritone in your throat. Full review here with standard headings of Exterior, Interior, Performance, Pricing and Summary.  Two HD drive videos …

Read more HD Road Test Review – 2016 Dodge Charger SRT392 – Balls Deep in the 4.2s ThunderCat!

Wildest Geneva Reveal – 2017 Lazareth LM847 – Monsterbike Runs 500HP Maserati V8!

Imagine all the show-stopping appeal and road presence of the Dodge Tomahawk V10 concept from the early 2000s… but made real, ride-able and road-legal acros Europe! And then imagine swapping the V10 for a much-better-sounding Maserati V8!? The results would be world-shaking. Such is the case for the custom-engineered Lazareth LM847 out of France.  This firm has been making some insane custom bikes, quads and car/bike hybrids for years, but this LM847 takes the firm to a whole new level. This seems like the perfect bike for the Clooney crew to thrum around Lake Como. But also a great fit …

Read more Wildest Geneva Reveal – 2017 Lazareth LM847 – Monsterbike Runs 500HP Maserati V8!

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TechArt Debuts 2017 911 and 911 Turbo – PnP Powerkits and Uniquely Sexy Aero

TechArt just launched its new bodywork, suspension, exhaust and cabin mods for the new 2017 911 Turbo and 2017 911 Carreras — and makes them more mouth-watering than ever! The beauty of the TechArt programs for the 911 is that they are subtle, yet very convincing.  Without the TechArt badges, the quality and integration into the original Porsche designs helps the parts disappear into the whole machine. This is in contrast to many of the very-obvious aftermarket upgrades out there. The favorite among this group?  Has to be the bright blue C2S. This TechArt stunner has the curb appeal to stop …

Read more TechArt Debuts 2017 911 and 911 Turbo – PnP Powerkits and Uniquely Sexy Aero

2016 BMW Vision Next 100 – Nightmare Blob Shows Why BMW Sales Are Tanking

Ready for 5000 German words you cannot possibly care about!? Let’s dive in to the BMW Next 100 Years press conference and new-concept debut, while stripping out 95-percent of the unintelligible corporate babble below. First things first: BMW Group and BMW pressclub have new websites.  Yay! But they do not work as easily as the previous ones. Boo.  At least the zip files do not create unmoveable, undeletable 3GB desktop bombs like BMW USA PressClub’s.   The renderings do turn from brown to pink when saved on a PC tho.  Bonus — some fails live on!   Dear BMW.  Flatten …

Read more 2016 BMW Vision Next 100 – Nightmare Blob Shows Why BMW Sales Are Tanking

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Geneva 2016 – Showfloor Mega Gallery – Part Two

So, so much hotness in here. Aston Martin DB11, Huayra BC, Apollo Arrow, Remac Concept One, Ferrari GTC4 Lusso, new Spyker and Zenvo’s….! Our favorite is split between the new Apollo and the DS E-Tense.   Geneva 2016 – Showfloor Mega Gallery – Part Two      

Design Analysis – 2016 Alfa Romeo DISCO VOLANTE SPYDER By Touring Superleggera + 1952 C52

It takes a master designer to reinterpret a retro model in a desirable, futuristic modern car.  The fail count is much larger than the short success list of the New Beetle, Ford GT and perhaps MINI. Fails?  Fiat 500, Lamborghini Miura, Ford Thunderbird, Chevrolet HHR, Plymouth Prowler, etc. etc. Among supercars, it is even harder to continue designs from so long ago.  Why? The designs were always extra wacky, with limited appeal even in their original iterations. In addition, supercar shoppers are always craving the next hotness.  The unattainable, never-before-seen machines that will bring traffic to a halt around you. Therefore, Touring Superleggera struck a …

Read more Design Analysis – 2016 Alfa Romeo DISCO VOLANTE SPYDER By Touring Superleggera + 1952 C52

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2017 Audi Q2 – Slides Below Q3 with All-New Design Language, Cheaper Price

Audi only secured the naming rights to the Q2 and Q4 trademarks in the last few weeks — coming right down to the wire before the car’s global debut in Geneva this week. Alfa Romeo had resisted giving their Q2 and Q4 drivetrain descriptors up until recently, and Audi likely paid big loot for the privilege. So just imagine — this car went through the entire VW/Audi development cycle without a confirmed name! And it does show, a bit, in that the Q2 makes little visual sense in the Audi lineup.  Its design is far more modern than the new …

Read more 2017 Audi Q2 – Slides Below Q3 with All-New Design Language, Cheaper Price

Design Analysis – 2017 Lamborghini CENTENARIO + 20 Astounding Geneva Closeups

  This might be the most outrageous Lamborghini of all time. And that is saying something — there have been some real wild childs’ in the back catalog! The Centenario is a 40-unit special Aventador with all-new styling and 770HP.  Half coupes and half roadsters, they are all pre-sold. The big innovations over the Aventador include rear-wheel steering and a new carbon-fiber chassis tub.  Much part sharing for boring things (like glass and suspension details) with the Aventador, yet cutting out a large bit of mass by replacing its aluminum spaceframe with a CF tub wherever possible.  This is likely …

Read more Design Analysis – 2017 Lamborghini CENTENARIO + 20 Astounding Geneva Closeups

Design Analysis – 2016 Pininfarina H2 Speed and Sigma Grand Prix

This is one of the first times someone has dusted off the idea of a hydrogen FCEV supercar in quite a while.  The most notable effort was likely from BMW more than a decade ago. There is certainly promise in a 180-second refill from a hydrogen station, then all the benefits of a full-EV drivetrain. Namely, SPEED! The H2 Speed is quoted at some quite impressive figures.  100-kph flashes by in a 3.4-second whir, and on to a max speed of 186-mph. DESIGN ANALYSIS All this is wrapped in the purest snow white panelwork you’ve ever seen.  The bubble-like nose …

Read more Design Analysis – 2016 Pininfarina H2 Speed and Sigma Grand Prix

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2016 ItalDesign Giugiaro GTZero

  Official debut details below on a very intriguing prototype from ItalDesign. Now that Giugiaro’s design boutique is integrated in the VW Group, and Audi in particular, their projects have taken on extra relevance.  Perhaps predicting the future of some kind of Audi or Lambo?  Or perhaps just reflecting the new mood toward shooting brake supercars…? Our theory is that the GTZero may have been a Lambo proposal that didn’t get the green light for production.  But got the go-ahead for a redesign to showcase ItalDesign’s skills. Either way, the three-door model is a 2+2 with a finished cabin and …

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Geneva Debuts – 2016 Subaru XV Concept – Less Hideous, More Production-Ready

Subaru has been bringing shockingly ugly concept cars to Europe for the big auto shows as long as anyone can remember. We’re equally unimpressed by this concept’s detailing, style and design decisions. As we were with the Viziv before.  Less repugnant… is still repugnant though. The difference is, this new XV Concept model is actually very, very close to production form.  Strip away the fug-nasty orange trims, fake honeycomb LEDs and the pricey paintwork, and we could be looking at the next-gen XV Crosstrek.  Of course, we will also see door handles and a frumpier roofline. The best angle is from the back, …

Read more Geneva Debuts – 2016 Subaru XV Concept – Less Hideous, More Production-Ready

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2016 TechRules AT96 TREV Supercar Concept

Very promising debut from TechRules today!  The AT96 is the supercar startup’s launch prototype, making its big-league entrance in Geneva after a round of testing at Silverstone and years of development in China. The core premise is to introduce a revolutionary new turbine-recharged EV powertrain — and make it viable as a hypercar! Of course, keen readers will recall the many turbine misadventures in automobiledom, from the Chrysler Turbine cars to the original powertrain of the canceled Jaguar C-X17 prototype. The idea of turbines to deliver an EV charge makes perfect sense.  Military vehicles have employed this tech for decades. Functionally, the …

Read more 2016 TechRules AT96 TREV Supercar Concept

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Concept Flashback – 2013 Lamborghini EGOISTA

As we prepare to be awed by the new Lamborghini Centario concept this week, how about a look back to three years ago.  Same place, same buzz of excitement around a new raging bull of a supercar. The Egoista certainly shocked crowds as it rumbled onstage.  Otherworldly angles on all sides, a monopisto cockpit layout with jet-fighter orange canopy, and a nose defined by three spikes where cars have always had a flat bumper plane. The idea of the Egoista was to make the fighter-jet link even more explicit than ever.  Lambo’s sharp angles have long claimed inspiration from stealth-y …

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2016 DS E-TENSE – Fantasy Color Visualizer of FULL-BALLS Supercar

2016’s confluence of new-car technology is great news for HOT supercars and concepts. Carbon Fiber for the the chassis can be the smallest of all batches: just one. And next, the freedom of an EV to package the batteries and drive motors relatively easily anywhere in the tubs.  This opens a lot of possibilities for fairly feasible ‘dream cars’ … following that dream road down from the Geneva showstand and into your garage! On that note, the 2016 DS E-TENSE is a perfect look at the R8-hunting, Tesla-scalping low-volume models that could come from the double innovations of CF and …

Read more 2016 DS E-TENSE – Fantasy Color Visualizer of FULL-BALLS Supercar

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1985 Volvo 480ES – ‘Project Galaxy’ Showcar Turns 30 + Lessons In Retrospect

Trust and affection go hand in hand. When you love a brand, you are willing to follow it to the ends of the Earth if need be. The BMW X5 proved this conclusively — with initial haters eventually loving the SUV’s Bimmer-ness, and its sales success worldwide still quite striking. Volvo proved its brand flexibility in a similar way with the XC90 — a game-changer of an SUV that saved the marque from a possible SAAB-like fate during the industry shakeout of ~2009. In fact, Volvo has long been remarkably flexible in moving beyond its core family sedan and wagon …

Read more 1985 Volvo 480ES – ‘Project Galaxy’ Showcar Turns 30 + Lessons In Retrospect

2.8s, 670HP 2017 ICONA Vulcano Titanium – New Video, Specs and 35 Photos Ahead of Top Marques Monaco

Icona is prepping the Vulcano Titanium for Top Marques Monaco — and has shared a new video about the trials and tribulation of creating a titanium-bodied hypercar. We must say, despite the very enchanting design and clear purpose — challenging the Ferrari F12 — the Vulcano was quite a curious sight on the Pebble Beach Concept Lawn in 2015. Why? It is mostly the exposed titanium finish!  It is distracting, hard to photograph, and presents pretty poorly versus the ultra-high-gloss paintwork of the others with which it shared the practise putting green. But that incredible bodywork is also part of the …

Read more 2.8s, 670HP 2017 ICONA Vulcano Titanium – New Video, Specs and 35 Photos Ahead of Top Marques Monaco

1986 Lotus 98T/3 F1 Car of Ayrton Senna – Animated 3D Cutaway by Roy Scorer, Tech Illustrator Extraordinaire

  Ed’s Intro:  Please welcome a brilliant new contributor: Roy Scorer. Roy shares a detailed, step-by-step demonstration of his artistic process here — and it is a fascinating display, indeed! Why is this all so special?  Let’s zoom out for a moment, and know that even in 2016 and with unlimited processing power… 3D ‘cutaway’ technical illustrations of a car’s engine, chassis and mechanicals are all done by hand.  CAD-CAM etc is lovely for surface details, but is singular in that purpose.  To actually “see” inside a car takes near-surreal understanding of every component, from every angle.  Even after photographing …

Read more 1986 Lotus 98T/3 F1 Car of Ayrton Senna – Animated 3D Cutaway by Roy Scorer, Tech Illustrator Extraordinaire

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Concept Debrief – 2007 Land Rover LRX

THe LRX today is kindof a non-event to view — simply because we are all so familiar with the production Range Rover EVOQUE’s design.  They are dead ringers for one another. But in 2007 when this stunning design vision rolled onstage, it was unlike any green oval truck ever before. Simply magnificent in its chunky, low and sporty proportions…. the LRX also evolved the tech-intense appeal of the LR and RR brands.  Monoblock surfacing all looks milled from solid billet steel — broken up only for ultra-slim and advanced LEDs and a blacked-out, low-roof glasshouse. The production Evoque would appear …

Read more Concept Debrief – 2007 Land Rover LRX

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2018 Lexus LC500 Cabrio Rendering

Full details on the new LC500h from Lexus! Very interesting advancements… conforming to few of the hypotheticals we initially posed below. For example, would it be a PHEV?  Would it run a V8? No and no on those fronts. But fear not: a new Li-ion battery system and four-speed EV transaxle in back complements the3.5-liter V6 up front to deliver a ballparked 4.7-second 4.2s sprint to 60-mph.  That is deeply impressive for a machine that also offers a new Hybrid manual gear-shift mode and far less CVT drone than possible before.  Lexus’s explicit promise of “well under 5 seconds to 100-kph” …

Read more 2018 Lexus LC500 Cabrio Rendering

Update1 – Ferrari 458 Widebody by MISHA Designs Is Shockingly Sexy Redesign

Updated with 16 new photos from Misha Designs.  A gorgeous car-mod crew is evolving — right before our eyes! Misha Designs out of LA has been on the custom supercar scene for years now, but has limited its scope — until recently — to wheels, stance and lower-body mods. Panameras, SLS AMGs, 911 Turbos and the rest of the usual Lambo suspects have been under the knife over at Misha on La Cienega Blvd. All those upgrades just seem like training for the main event now.  Seeing the MISHA 458 widebody is a clear signal of the talent and ambition of …

Read more Update1 – Ferrari 458 Widebody by MISHA Designs Is Shockingly Sexy Redesign

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Hall of Fame – 2010 Alfa Romeo Pandion by BERTONE

We obviously cover a lot of concepts and dream cars here, but rarely does one captivate the eye and mind more than the 2010 Bertone Pandion. BERTONE: COMPANY SITUATION ANALYSIS First things first: Bertone (pronounced ‘Bear Tony’) is currently restructuring after some lean years in the Italian car business drained its corporate accounts to breaking point. Is this any way indicative of the quality of the firm’s design work? Absolutely, positively not. In fact, it is because of Bertone’s amazing ideas that the firm branched back into actual car factories versus just dreamy, steamy concept cars and prototypes. Full-scale production …

Read more Hall of Fame – 2010 Alfa Romeo Pandion by BERTONE

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2017 PAGANI Huayra BC – Hyperlight Aero + Xtrac Race Drivetrain for Street-Legal Masterpiece

Welcome to the hottest new Pagani! The BC is named after Horacio’s very first customer, Benny Caiola, and is a hell of a tribute indeed. Every body panel except the roof is all new for this track-ready beast of a machine.  Power is up, weight is radically down, and a new active diff and Xtrac racing paddle-shifter will drop laptimes down radically as well. And one of its best details?  One that will send your happiness quotient through the clouds?! Unlike the Pagani Zonda R or Zonda Revolucione, the Huayra BC will be fully street-legal worldwide.  Yes, this includes the US …

Read more 2017 PAGANI Huayra BC – Hyperlight Aero + Xtrac Race Drivetrain for Street-Legal Masterpiece

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Road Test Review – 2016 Infiniti QX50

The QX50 is a crossover that every single carmaker in the world would love to have in their lineup. Just think about its core package: a standard 3.7-liter V6 making 325HP, to the back wheels, through a 7-speed automatic. A balanced chassis, and roaring Z-car-like performance from a base price of just under $35k!  Sign me up. Is the QX50’s rare offering the one you want leading your fleet, though?  Let’s find out… The QX50 is the kind of anti-minivan, performance SUV that typically carries pricing in the 50s as a BMW X4, Mercedes GLC or perhaps Dodge Durango R/T.  What else can be purely rear-drive and …

Read more Road Test Review – 2016 Infiniti QX50

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PRIOR DESIGN Ferrari PD458 AeroKit – Looking Gorgeous on New Rosso Corsa Example

New photoshoot of the PD458 aerokit from Prior Design! This time, we see the non-widebody version with a set of lovely 21-inch VOSSEN VPS-306 forged wheels. Continental tires and a slight height drop from the H&R springs complete the look.  Clearly, this aerokit is a winner with or without the extended PD458WB fenders. Check out the latest lipstick-red hotness — and how-to-buy info — below..   PRIOR DESIGN Ferrari PD458 AeroKit – Red Prior Design can make some of the craziest, most-exotic customs look absolutely flawless. Truly factory-fresh in appearance, the Prior Design upgrades are a fabulous treat on any supercar. But the …

Read more PRIOR DESIGN Ferrari PD458 AeroKit – Looking Gorgeous on New Rosso Corsa Example

2016 ALPINE Vision Concept – 99% Production-Ready with Stunning Beauty, Race Dynamics

We’re getting very, very close to the first mass-market, mid-engine French sports car in decades!  Excluding the Bugatti Veyron and a few race specials, the Clio V6 has been the closest thing to a locally-made track car in ages. Why is this?  And how will Renault’s relaunch of the ALPINE brand enhance the firm’s strategic goals, profitability and sales of the Kadjar in China? All that remains a bit fuzzy. But the actual car is now in stark focus — and looks spectacular!   Beautiful rebirth of the original Alpine proportions, flowing rear end, and quad-lit nose right off the …

Read more 2016 ALPINE Vision Concept – 99% Production-Ready with Stunning Beauty, Race Dynamics

HD Design Analysis – 2020 Volkswagen GT Ge by Eli Shala – Biplane Aero Theory, Negative Space Define EV Supercar

Imagine your senior year in college.  Did any of your final projects merit global attention, countless strategy meetings and even full-scale models? Your ideas, and how you expressed them, drawing attention from one of the largest and most-influential carmakers in the world? We’d bet not. But then, you are not the design whiz that is Eljesah “Eli” Shala, and you did not create the 2020 VW GT Ge “Ground Effect” design study. The start of a exceptionally promising career for Eli began long ago, but is picking up momentum rapidly in 2016.  All thanks to the extreme sportiness + eco principles …

Read more HD Design Analysis – 2020 Volkswagen GT Ge by Eli Shala – Biplane Aero Theory, Negative Space Define EV Supercar

Porsche MACAN PD600M Widebody by Prior Design – Chopster Looks, Easy Pricing

  Prior Design is a favorite for the gorgeous enhancements they provide to a huge range of exotic cars.  The Macan is a fave too!  Any SUV that can do an accidental four-wheel-drift when making a U-turn is a hero car for us!!   And you are forgiven for thinking these customs are $100k or more atop whatever the base price of the car is — a la Brabus or Mansory, among others.  Those firms are known for one-off and bespoke carbon-fiber creations, full fender swaps and general re-engineering on a very dramatic scale. Prior Design is more of a …

Read more Porsche MACAN PD600M Widebody by Prior Design – Chopster Looks, Easy Pricing

HD Road Test Review – 2016 Audi A6 2.0T Quattro – 5.8s, 550-Mile Time-Traveler

No scoffing at my 2.0T badge! It only takes a block of driving to know: this Audi is a time machine. It takes us into a future of downsized, forced-induction engines that hold their own beside V8s.   And cruise onward while others take the exit ramp to refuel. Power, speed, efficiency and value come standard on the 2016 A6 2.0T.  There are a few option boxes omitted on the test car that we think you will enjoy, however. And one bombshell performance secret to why the 32-MPG A6 quattro is a *must* over the 35-MPG A6 2.0T in its $46k, front-drive guise. The …

Read more HD Road Test Review – 2016 Audi A6 2.0T Quattro – 5.8s, 550-Mile Time-Traveler

Top 10 SUPRA-Tastic Design Details – Toyota FT-1 Concept + 88 NEW Photos

NEW FT-1 photos?  Yes ALL NEW…? Sortof. We posted these originally on laptop in Santa Cruz, and the results were iffy.  So we went back to the originals, starting again and bringing the FT-1’s details to high-res glory! The most striking things about the FT-1 in person are its captivating beauty, extremely long-hooded proportions, and intense aero detailing. A stunning car. Let’s appreciate its top 10 design details from up close. The design of the FT-1 is visibly alive.  Functional ventwort in a dozen places around all side brings the wild, swooping fenders and hood into sharp relief.  The aero cuts and ground-effect details make …

Read more Top 10 SUPRA-Tastic Design Details – Toyota FT-1 Concept + 88 NEW Photos

2016 Chrysler 300S and 200S Alloy Editions – Sport Chassis Tunes Now Featuring Titanium and Dark Bronze Finishes

  The main Chrysler trim letter to lust after?  C, right? For 2016-and-beyond style, the coolest Chryslers are now definitely wearing the S! Bold pronouncement, perhaps, but over the last few years the 200C and 300C have become the lux and powerful versions of the standard models.  The S twins, however, are the badass ones with mean night styling and performance-tuned handling — regardless of engine. To drive that point home even more explicitly, Chrysler just pre-launched its coolest S models yet: the 300S and 200S Alloy Editions. They are gorgeous and easily the most SRT-infused cars in the Chrysler …

Read more 2016 Chrysler 300S and 200S Alloy Editions – Sport Chassis Tunes Now Featuring Titanium and Dark Bronze Finishes

2016 nanoFlowcell QUANTiNO – AWD EV Aims Squarely at BMW i3 via Revolutionary Battery Tech

NanoFlowcell is the stunning startup trying to make energy from ordinary salt water. A revolutionary new battery chemistry is at the heart of the firm’s products to date.  Cars like the super-exotic Quant F — a four-seater with gorgeous gullwing doors opening the entire bodyside. Looking like a stretched Porsche 918 Spyder, the main quant prototype is still a stunner. But what about production feasibility?  FOr that, the plan has evolved into this slick electric hatchback.  A premium model aimed right at the BMW i3, the QUANTiNO majors on realistic goals.  Four electric motors — one at each corner — …

Read more 2016 nanoFlowcell QUANTiNO – AWD EV Aims Squarely at BMW i3 via Revolutionary Battery Tech

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2016 Opel GT Concept – RWD Turbo Triple Under Sexy, Blown-Glass Exterior Design

Opel is trying to get its mojo back.   The German firm and its Vauxhall twin have taken a pounding in the last few years in terms of desirability and brand affinity. This Opel GT aims to realign the firm with modern Euro values and driving ideals. Best place to start? A lightweight purist’s special! This Opel GT’s design is what will make a big splash, but we like what is underneath even better. A front-mid mount for the turbo 1.0-liter triple sends power to the back wheels.  Simple pleasures! A six-speed sequential manual and 8.0-second sprint to 60-mph are …

Read more 2016 Opel GT Concept – RWD Turbo Triple Under Sexy, Blown-Glass Exterior Design

2016 Dodge VIPER ACR - Bondurant Black 4

2016 Dodge VIPER ACR – Bondurant Black Mamba

Updated 1.31.16 Just drove the 2016 Viper GT on track and am still in V10 nirvana. But there is a new king in the Viper range: the road-legal American Club Racer. Seeing the car in person is a jaw-dropping experience — this exterior is the coolest supercar since the TVR Sagaris! Huge new fender vent slashes, a underbody fully shrouded with air channels, and a nose and tail treatment more aggressive than even the wildest tuners can make real. Let alone make for sale as a $20k option! 2016 Dodge VIPER ACR – Bondurant Black 2016 Dodge VIPER ACR PREVIOUS …

Read more 2016 Dodge VIPER ACR – Bondurant Black Mamba

2017 Audi R8 V10 – USA Pricing, Colors and Spec Secrets + 40-Photo Flyaround

Fun meet/greet with the 2017 Audi R8 V10 yesterday at the Rolex Daytona 24 Hours! Fantastic to see the car out in the sun here in the USA fairly quickly since its reveal in mid-2015.  We’re seeing the car arrive to first buyers around the same time as in Europe — by the end of March in some cases.  No big lag in crossing the Atlantic, in other words. The new R8 is mysterious in person. You really have to know cars to note that this is the new model, first of all. Second of all, its new design details …

Read more 2017 Audi R8 V10 – USA Pricing, Colors and Spec Secrets + 40-Photo Flyaround

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2016 PrintTech.de Lamborghini HURACAN TRICOLORE in Brushed Chrome Flames

The world of wraps is getting very artful!  The hundreds of all-new surface finishes present opportunities to customize your car that were impossible until now.  Or at least cost prohibitive! This Print Tech GmbH creation shows the state of the art: a tricolore flag motif that skins the nose in green, the mid-section in white and the tail in red.  These chrome flame finishes are crowns by a brushed-alloy look as the protective topcoat layer. That’s not all: there are literal brushstrokes visible on these patterns.  The whole effect looks like $75k in customization… but only costs a tenth of …

Read more 2016 PrintTech.de Lamborghini HURACAN TRICOLORE in Brushed Chrome Flames

First 2016 Ferrari F60 America Delivered + F60 Speedster Renderings

Ferrari just delivered its first F60 America in Palm Beach.  This 10-unit special edition celebrates Ferrari USA in the best way possible — a future collector classic! The F60 America is a fully redesigned F12 custom — sharing no bodywork with the hardcore V12 hero coupes. Nor does it share the roof of its sibling — this F60 is a pure spyder meant for sunny days only. The F60 America is a double-edged sword as a loyalty perk to its ten most loyal clients.  Sharp on one side from its devastating beauty and all-new design elements in front and back. …

Read more First 2016 Ferrari F60 America Delivered + F60 Speedster Renderings

4.0s, 350HP 2017 Porsche 718 Boxster S Revealed – All-Turbo Pair Boast Huge Power Bumps

Update: Sorry to beta test a new GIF technique in this post.  These new gif-movies are very large files.  They make the slideshow GIFs I make look like little newborns by comparison!  Why GIFs?  they are endlessly animated, natural loading and auto-playing videos.  Without the awfulness of autoplay audio.  And no need to click ‘play,’ which few will do nowadays.  Practise will make perfect, one hopes.  Porsche just dropped some very exciting news: the Boxster and Boxster S are rebranded and re-designed for 2017. Now dubbed the 718 Boxster, the twins boast massive power upgrades at both trim levels — …

Read more 4.0s, 350HP 2017 Porsche 718 Boxster S Revealed – All-Turbo Pair Boast Huge Power Bumps

Hypercar Heroes – Lamborghini DIABLO Evolution – VT to SE, Jota to SV, SVR and Roadster, then GTR and 6.0

The Lamborghini Diablo is a true icon in the supercar business. And despite all the sideways hooning and 200MPH bragging rights, it is indeed a business. As the Diablo launch in 1990 seems farther and farther in the past, let’s look at how this car saw off challenges from all sides of the hypercar world.  And how the Diablo and Lamborghini’s clever reinventions helped the car evolve from an 80s throwback of a drive into an ultra-modern GTR and 6.0VT near the end of production in 2001. Think about that: 11 years.  Staying in production is an achievement in its …

Read more Hypercar Heroes – Lamborghini DIABLO Evolution – VT to SE, Jota to SV, SVR and Roadster, then GTR and 6.0

Concept Debrief – 2004 Kia KCV III – Glass-Roof CC Showed Newfound Design/Execution Skills

In a few short years at the turn of the millennium, Kia’s concepts went from reskinned and rebadged Lotus Elan’s to purely bespoke creations, designed with near-Italian flair.  And constructed with credible, world-class production values! This KCV III was an important mark in the sand for Kia’s evolution from niche budget brand to mainstream heavy-hitter. Today, the giant headlights are alarmingly out of style, but there is goodness shining through even there. Check out the bright white LED DRLs in the bottom of those giant lamps! And the full-frame grille set vertically into the bumper?  Finished in non-chrome grey, no …

Read more Concept Debrief – 2004 Kia KCV III – Glass-Roof CC Showed Newfound Design/Execution Skills

Exclusive! TopCar Teases New Mercedes-AMG GLE Inferno Coupe

TopCar is taking its Porsche love to new heights in 2016: a major stand at the Geneva show set the brand on level footing with other supertuners like Brabus, KAHN Design and Novitec Group.   TopCar is focused on all Porsche models, clearly, but also now with great new upgrades for Range Rover, BMW and Mercedes SUVs. The latest creation?  An AMG GLE dubbed the INFERNO! Bold names are not something TopCar needs help with, clearly.  =] This new take on the GLE Coupe looks quite striking. Major changes in mood and style are visible from even 1000-paces thanks to contrast-carbon …

Read more Exclusive! TopCar Teases New Mercedes-AMG GLE Inferno Coupe

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TOPCAR Shows Full Carbon STINGER Reskin for Porsche 911 Turbo

  Updated 1.23.16 What better way to drive home how exotic the TopCar Stinger GTR is than to see its all-new carbon bodywork make up that iconic 911 shape — even without the Porsche underneath to distract the eye. This custom upgraded exterior looks exceptionally high-quality in its raw form.  Yet also featherlight and dropping the OEM curb weight by around 200 pounds.  Along with the menu of power and handling mods, the Stinger GTR definitely packs a strong punch.  Like a prize fighter in carbon-kevlar, nothing it getting past these TopCar turbos! The full carbon Stinger GTR is set for …

Read more TOPCAR Shows Full Carbon STINGER Reskin for Porsche 911 Turbo

Own the ONLY 2016 Aston Martin DB10 – SPECTRE Hero, Vulcan, DBX and DP-100 All Slightly Awful, Though

The DB10 is finally available to buy! But not for you.  =] Just ten of the bespoke 007 rides were created ahead of the film. It was not immediately clear if that ten included the movie stunt cars, or how the ten DB10’s would be sold. We now know.  Eight were used to film the movie, while two stayed in pristine and brand-new condition. Aston is keeping one of the new cars for itself to enjoy.  And that last one? Up for grabs!  Christie’s auction house is selling the DB10 on February 24th to benefit MSF, or Doctors Without Borders …

Read more Own the ONLY 2016 Aston Martin DB10 – SPECTRE Hero, Vulcan, DBX and DP-100 All Slightly Awful, Though

2017 VLF FORCE 1 V10 – FULL Launch Details, Price and Auto Option for 218MPH American Beauty

A new supercar is always a welcome surprise — and this one is like a gift that keeps on giving! The Force 1 V10 is the second launch model of rapidly-expanding VLF Automotive — a collabo and evolution on the VL Destino plans revealed in 2012. That car is now available for sale to owners as a Fisker Karma with an LS9 V8 engine swap instead of its previous turbo EREV powertrain.  A new nose and tail — now with quad square exhaust pipes — now tops out at 200-mph and delivers a 3.9-second sprint to 60-mph.  The unreal lowness of the four-seat …

Read more 2017 VLF FORCE 1 V10 – FULL Launch Details, Price and Auto Option for 218MPH American Beauty

Worst of NAIAS - 2016 Acura Precision Concept 3

Update1 – 2016 Acura Precision Concept – Design Reboot Ruined By Another Fugly Nose

Updated with real-life photos. Good to see more angles of the Acura Precision Concept, a car whose design is really expressive and deep in real-life photos versus the initial renders.  The beak is still rough, but there is promise here. Acura is still having trouble rebuilding its sales since a brief peak in the early 2000s with the TL and MDX. More recently, the sales velocity for the brand is in terminal decline. A big part of the problem has been the dogged persistence with the ‘shield’ grille since at least 2007.  This is a look that no one really likes, …

Read more Update1 – 2016 Acura Precision Concept – Design Reboot Ruined By Another Fugly Nose

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2016 Kia TELLURIDE Concept – LWB SUV Brings 7-Seat Chalet Cachet

The face of this all-new KIA Telluride concept hit me like a sucker punch in thumbnail form.  What is that, a Lada Bentley? But after a closer look, we have nothing but praise the this Telluride’s bluff yet rounded design themes. The core basics are all there: short front overhang, awesome long and level hood, plus a steep windshield rake like a future G-wagen. It all really works for the Telluride, especially in profile. Here the elegant, techy and innovative glasshouse wears a signature brightwork wrap-around.  In the tail, we have more clean lines and vertical forms. Yet all smooth …

Read more 2016 Kia TELLURIDE Concept – LWB SUV Brings 7-Seat Chalet Cachet

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2016 Audi h-Tron Quattro Concept – Hypercomplex Tech Showcase Headed for Sale as $100k Tesla Rival as 2018 Q6

Audi’s big news for the Detroit show?  The new 2017 A4 and Q7 — which are set for arrivals to US showrooms in the next few months. Alongside those dull-looking production cars come massive cabin tech enhancements, efficiency boosts and all-new powertrains. A bit more exciting on the appearance front?  This new h-Tron Quattro Concept. Roughly previewing the size of an upcoming Q6 crossover, this latest prototype shows a production-intent hydrogen-electric SUV.  And boy is is complex: multiple tanks of hydrogen power advanced electrics for a range of nearly 400 miles, a 0-60-mph sprint under 7-seconds, and AWD grip just …

Read more 2016 Audi h-Tron Quattro Concept – Hypercomplex Tech Showcase Headed for Sale as $100k Tesla Rival as 2018 Q6

2016 Buick AVISTA Concept – SuperCoupe As First Glimpse of Next GNX

Imagine a Camaro GT-R, with huge V6TT power and four-paw traction.  Brutal shout + pace to outrace an RS5 and C2S? THe Buick Avista is a first glimpse into the future of the triple-shield marque.     2016 Buick AVISTA Concept   For Release: Sunday, Jan. 10, 2016, 7 p.m. EST       Buick Introduces Avista Concept Design elegance, performance heritage conveyed in turbocharged 2+2 coupe   DETROIT – Ahead of its public debut at the North American International Auto Show, Buick today revealed the Avista concept – a 2+2 coupe that pushes the brand’s contemporary design ethos and rekindles its historic …

Read more 2016 Buick AVISTA Concept – SuperCoupe As First Glimpse of Next GNX

Concept Flashbacks – 2001 SEAT TANGO Trio – Cabrio, Roadster and Coupe Made Racy, Avante-Garde Superminis

Here is the next evolution of the SEAT cabrio design concepts from around the turn of the century: the 2001 Tango twins. The Tango itself is a sexy expression of ultra-modern, flowing and intersecting surfaces. There is almost an abstract artistry to the hyper-curved elements of the Tango’s nose and hood. A nice aero strake is also a trademark part of the design theme shown here. The rounded hood and front arch then flows back and downward toward the rear axle. It is a nice look and one that translated directly to a generation of SEAT production cars very nicely. …

Read more Concept Flashbacks – 2001 SEAT TANGO Trio – Cabrio, Roadster and Coupe Made Racy, Avante-Garde Superminis

2017 BMW i8 Spyder Teased Via BMW i Vision Future Interaction + ConnectedRide HUD Cycle Helmets

  BMW debuted a half-dozen new tech innovations at CES this year, including gesture control and mirror-less exteriors. But the real eye-catcher?  The BMW i Vision Future Interaction — a near-production 2017 BMW i8 Spyder. Sans two critical pieces, of course. Yes, the production car will have doors.  At first we thought the BMW i VFI Concept hid its doors in the side sills, a la the BMW Technik Z1 model sold in Europe briefly in the early 1990s. Alas, the lack of doors is just to give full view of the new cockpit controls and layouts.  This new user …

Read more 2017 BMW i8 Spyder Teased Via BMW i Vision Future Interaction + ConnectedRide HUD Cycle Helmets

2016 Faraday Future FFZERO1 Concept 10

2016 Faraday Future FFZERO1 Concept Throws Down Gauntlet – Now or Never, Laggards

Well, this is it!  Nearly 24 hours after the leaks began, and a full 12 since the press conference in Vegas last night, the Faraday Future concept car for CES is now in clear focus. Before you get too excited about a full reveal — with the normal specs, pricing and a production roadmap —it is best to temper expectations. This fantasy concept from Faraday Future is not headed for the road. Nor is it really headed for any race series. But racetracks? That is another story.  The quad-motor, AWD EV promises 1000+ horsepower and a 200-mph-plus top speed.  The electric motors are …

Read more 2016 Faraday Future FFZERO1 Concept Throws Down Gauntlet – Now or Never, Laggards

Concept Debrief – 2011 SAAB PhoeniX was DOA

  The only thing we really recalled about the final SAAB concept car was its tail. With backlit red lighting through a screen mesh, the PhoeniX reminded us of a nasty reborn Pontiac Bonneville SSEi.  Cheap body cladding and all, unfortunately. Reviewing the PhoeniX design today four years later, the look of this sports coupe is no more appealing. Put simply, this car would have flopped like a pancake on the market. Imagine comparing this with a $50k BMW 435i? It is not just the detailing that is overwrought, but all the surfaces and even the proportions. This thing is …

Read more Concept Debrief – 2011 SAAB PhoeniX was DOA

2000 Lancia Stratos S81 Stola 3

Concept Flashback – 2000 Lancia STRATOS S81 by Stola

  We have a couple really cool concepts in the pipe from CES for later tonight and tomorrow, but a bit of a lull at moment. What better time to showcase a very influential concept car from Stola for Lancia at the Turin motorshow of the year 2000. Dubbed the Stratos S81, the machine updated the original proportions and design elements of the Lancia Stratos rally hero — but three decades later. WHat really strikes you about the S81 in 2016 is how influential is details ended up being, albeit long after its retirement. Most cloned details?  The boomerrang of …

Read more Concept Flashback – 2000 Lancia STRATOS S81 by Stola

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Design Analysis – 2014 SEAT Ibiza CUPSTER

The 2014 GTI Wörthersee event brought out a few exciting concept reveals: including this very playful Ibiza. If any car’s namesake location points to its mission, it would be this concept!  Why?  Ibiza (say: eeee-beee-thhaaa) is the Cancun of Europe. Sunny party people flock to this semi-trashy island resort to escape the grey, rainy winters across Europe.  They dance to all the latest club bangers, contract some STDs (worth it!), then march home — back to the real world. Would this CUPSTER make sense in just resort mode, or in real life? It does not really matter: the car is …

Read more Design Analysis – 2014 SEAT Ibiza CUPSTER

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2017 BMW i6 Is Hiding in Plain Sight: 2009 BMW Vision EfficientDynamics Teased LWB i8

Here is an interesting one, simply because it shows an upcoming machine hiding in plain sight. What car is that? The BMW i6, we predict. This exceptionally advanced concept seemed extremely unfeasible when it was revealed under the EfficientDynamics moniker in 2009. Look at those skinny tires! And Clear doors with a carbon-fiber chassis?  Silly! But they the BMW i8 concepts started appearing, with a 2+2 PHEV supercar BMW announced for production just a year after this first concept.  That car would materialize for 2014 as the i8 and i3 we know now as the real thing. Where the eventual …

Read more 2017 BMW i6 Is Hiding in Plain Sight: 2009 BMW Vision EfficientDynamics Teased LWB i8

2016 Porsche Boxster SPYDER Silver 27

2016 Porsche Boxster SPYDER – First USA Photos! 100-Shot Animated Flyaround

    Incredible intro to the 380HP Porsche Boxster Spyder today!  The car is absolutely gorgeous, with upgrades dripping in aggression and hypercar hints of the top 918 Spyder. The sound on startup is suitably aggressive, with a deep baritone thrummmm after the initial startup bark. Smoked finishes all around and a liquid silver paintjob are only half the battle. The giant double bubble tonneau cover with mid-mounted brake light reminds many of the Carrera GT, or especially the Carrera GT by Zagato. What really makes the Boxster Spyder so impressive in the flesh? It is almost a total redesign.  By our count, …

Read more 2016 Porsche Boxster SPYDER – First USA Photos! 100-Shot Animated Flyaround

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Concept Flashback – 2011 Volkswagen Up! Azzurra Sailing Team was Playful Blue Sky Thinking

A harborside revival of many beach cars, the Up! Azzurra Sailing Team concept for the 2011 show circuit was the most whimsical part of a five-pack of custom Up! variants. The vehicle features exquisite wood and brass detailing for its doorlets and seatbacks, and a totally bespoke solid sill and rear window. The entire roof is just blue sky. And while this type of cabrio is questionable from all perspectives, it is exceptionally well-executed as a showpiece for the standard Up! Even with that million-dollar four-seat cabin, the nose, bumpers and even mini steel wheels are all exactly what Euro …

Read more Concept Flashback – 2011 Volkswagen Up! Azzurra Sailing Team was Playful Blue Sky Thinking

NOVITEC TORADO Reveals New Lambo HURACAN N-LARGO Widebody with 860HP

N-Largo is like a special passcode behind the velvet rope of the supercar universe. Since falling HARD for the sister-company Novitec Rosso’s California N-Largo, the name has sent a tingly shiver up my trousers. The new Novitec Torado Huracan N-Largo therefore is a very welcome new-year’s surprise. Gorgeous aggression and new-ly scultped panels take the Huracan shape to new levels of aggression from all angles. And unlike many widebodies accomplished via manually-extended metal fenders, or tacked-on flares, Novitec goes a much more thorough route. Those wild new front fenders with trailing vent slash?  All-new. The giant lower and upper intake scoops behind …

Read more NOVITEC TORADO Reveals New Lambo HURACAN N-LARGO Widebody with 860HP

2017 Lexus RX-L Renderings 2

Exclusive Animated Renderings – 2017 Lexus RX-L Is LWB 7-Seat Variant

The new Lexus RX is already flying off showroom floors — with its devoted owner-base loving its all-new cabin inside, design outside and eight model variants.  With F Sports and Hybrids all available with or without AWD, the RX350 and RX450h are looking at a huge sales year in 2016. One thing Lexus mentioned at the launch of the new RX is that owners did not want the next-gen model to grow.  To that end, the new RX and its chopped roofline adds second row legroom over the 2015 models (plus powerfold and recline controls).  But the new RX is …

Read more Exclusive Animated Renderings – 2017 Lexus RX-L Is LWB 7-Seat Variant

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Concept Debrief – 2011 Volkswagen NILS – Govt-Funded EV Commuter Now Seems Like Unfathomably Bad Joke

It is very, very challenging to read (and write) about VW’s eco mobility ideas in light of the company’s current emissions scandals. The “diesel issue” — as it is known in German — really puts all the last ten years of innovative, visionary concept cars in the shameful, punishment corner of the automotive universe. What about the “C02 issue”?  Oh, that has resolved itself.  Not a pattern of lies and systemic fraud.  Hooray! Super, super trustworthy company, obviously. Beyond that obligatory caveat… This NILS concept shows how seriously the VAG once took its mission to mass-produce zero-emissions automobiles. VW was actually …

Read more Concept Debrief – 2011 Volkswagen NILS – Govt-Funded EV Commuter Now Seems Like Unfathomably Bad Joke

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Concept Flashback – 1995 BMW Z18 is Fascinating Rally Roadster

BMW Technik was really up to some clever stuff in the mid-1990s. This concept is chock full of interesting and production-bound ideas — even set far apart from the kooky nature of a rally roadster. A convertible crossover… as we might call it today. But still unlike anything this side of the Ariel Nomad in terms of purity of purpose. And the Z18 would actually be a pretty fun off-roader. Check out the nonexistent front bumper, fantastic ride height and river-ready wading depth. There is interesting ‘flame’ surfacing on the Z18, as a matter of fact, far before Bangle made …

Read more Concept Flashback – 1995 BMW Z18 is Fascinating Rally Roadster

Concept Flashback - 2001 RINSPEED Rone 16

Concept Flashback – 2001 RINSPEED Rone – Single-Seater Debuted Dynamic Cockpit Control

This is a pretty cool one from the RINSPEED back catalog: the Rone, or R-one. Racing One is the name, and also the ethos of the single-seater with origins in the Audi TT. Ultra-low and lean is the name of the game for this sporty vision: the Rone is is just 38-inches off the ground at its highest point. This is a cool 15-inches below the roof of the Audi TT — and it gets even better. The single-seat layout in the center of the Rone is part of a very innovative Dynamic Cockpit Control Concept — a flying center …

Read more Concept Flashback – 2001 RINSPEED Rone – Single-Seater Debuted Dynamic Cockpit Control

2017 Jannarelly Design JD1 is All-New, Rear-Engine Exotic from Talent Behind LYKAN HyperSport and Zarooq Sandracer

WHat happens when two of the most skilled talents in bespoke supercars come together?  Fusing design vision, carbon-fiber production and a bit of marketing magic? The JD1 from Jannarelly Design! This is a fantastic bit of absolutely breaking news: Anthony Jannarelly is a clear favorite of ours since obsessing over his crisp, layered aesthetic as seen on the W Motors Lykan and Fenyr, plus the recently-revealed Zarooq SandRacer. This new venture pairs Jannarelly with Frederic Juillot, lead at Equation Composite, to make their own supercar vision a reality. A look behind the curtain of the two Frenchmen’s lives shows that their …

Read more 2017 Jannarelly Design JD1 is All-New, Rear-Engine Exotic from Talent Behind LYKAN HyperSport and Zarooq Sandracer

2016 Acura Precision Concept – Teases Next-Gen RLX with Cali-Penned Fastback Coupe

  Just a single teaser sketch so far of the upcoming Acura Precision Concept, but it is a promising one! The design overtly previews upcoming sports sedan models from the resurgent luxury arm of Honda, with a design direction expected to diverge from the current Acura design direction.  Not much to learn from the teaser image about that look, but we can see impressively enhanced proportions. The long-hood and short front overhang is unlike current RL sedans or even the new TLX, as is the plunging roofline and curt tail — evoking a bit of Audi A7 or BMW 650i …

Read more 2016 Acura Precision Concept – Teases Next-Gen RLX with Cali-Penned Fastback Coupe

BENGALA Auto Design – Widebody Boutique Prelaunch Gallery

Gorgeous needs no introduction… Some delicious visions from the talented Bengala Automotive Design in Madrid today, with the LF-A, P1 and Huracan widebodies particularly stunning.     BENGALA Auto Design – Widebody Boutique Prelaunch Gallery   Bengala Automotive Design S.L. is a privately owned Company dedicated to the Design & Customization of High-end Luxury Vehicles. Our market is currently segmented in two different areas, Luxury and Semi-Luxury. Brands which compose this first segment include Lamborghini, Ferrari and Porsche. While our Semi-Luxury Projects cover brands such as Mercedes-AMG,Audi and BMW. Today we work with customers in Europe and Middle East. Our expansion …

Read more BENGALA Auto Design – Widebody Boutique Prelaunch Gallery

2016 W Motors FENYR SuperSport 9

2016 W Motors FENYR SuperSport – Updated w/ Tech Specs, Video and Latest Photos

  World premiere of a screaming new hypercar: the Fenyr Supersport from W Motors! Following the incredible LYKAN in production form, the new FENYR is more compact, more wicked and even more exotic. Power comes in mid-engine RUF boxer form; the FENYR runs a 900-horsepower, 1100-foot-pound 4.0-liter twin turbo. Porsche basis, but remade by RUF to an extreme degree. That giant-killing motor is mounted inches above the ground in the mid-rear of the full carbon monocoque.  The FENYR drives the rear wheels alone through a new 7-speed PDK and limited-slip differential. Quoted performance figures so far are 2.7-seconds to 100-kph, …

Read more 2016 W Motors FENYR SuperSport – Updated w/ Tech Specs, Video and Latest Photos

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Concept Flashback – 2009 RINSPEED iChange

How about an awesome Rinspeed concept to help forget the X-Trem from 1999? Flash forward ten years later, and we have the 2009 iChange — an ultra-low, sleek and sexy single-seat sports car — with a twist. At the touch of a button, the track-attack looks and functionality of the iChange into a chic three-seater with bubble glass canopy.  How?  The entire glasshouse shifts upward and forward, with its rear section base extending a few inches upward to give more headroom in back.   (It is subtle)  Very subtle.  So the name is iChange, but might be better billed as the …

Read more Concept Flashback – 2009 RINSPEED iChange

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Concept Debrief – 1999 RINSPEED X-Trem M.U.V.

Flashbacks can be good…. and they can be bad. The one thing both have in common:  a livid, full-color reminder of something you otherwise never think about. Livid and vivid certainly describes the Rinspeed X-Trem MUV from 1999. The firm was embracing a bit of Americana in the late 90s, and this monstrosity was the ultimate expression of the bright, loud and obnoxious USA, at least as seen from new Geneva.  Less an expression of actual American wants/needs for trucks, and much more a reflection of SoCal life as seen on tv and movies.  The whole machine attempts to embrace …

Read more Concept Debrief – 1999 RINSPEED X-Trem M.U.V.

2017 Bentley Continental R-Type - Renderings 6

2017 Bentley Continental R-Type – Renderings, Rationale and Analysis

The previous Bentley R-Type 1952 meetup with the 2016 GT Speed started a snowballing effort in photoshop. While Bentley certainly focuses on selling their current W12 Speed — especially versus its incredibly good V8S sibling — we are focused on the future! The Panamera basis for the next Continental GT platform is well-known and virtually confirmed in the car business, and has been for years.  But will it be a Panamera clone? Absolutely not. Not one bit of cabin, engines or design anywhere will be in common among the two. Key changes versus the current Conti range are expected to …

Read more 2017 Bentley Continental R-Type – Renderings, Rationale and Analysis

2016 RINSPEED Etos Concept – Self-Driving, Drone-Launching Technical Tour de Force

The RINSPEED concept for 2016 is out, with highly advanced digital-car tech of the future taking a front seat for nearly every technical element of the machine. And if there were a back seat in the Etos, the two occupants could both chill back there while the self-driving tech takes over, sinks the steering wheel into the dashboard, and performs fully autonomous self-driving. A basis on the BMW i8 platform means that style, to some extent, has taken a back seat to tech this year.  This means the BMW kidney grilles are replaced up front by ultralight plastics and 3D-effect …

Read more 2016 RINSPEED Etos Concept – Self-Driving, Drone-Launching Technical Tour de Force

1995 BMW Z21 6

Concept Flashback – 1995 BMW Z21 Just 4/2

Here is a very fun roadster concept from BMW Technik in 1995: the Just 4/2.  Also known as the Z21 internally, the rear-engine design was intended as a lightweight sports roadster in the mold of the Lotus/Caterham Seven — but designed to be safe and road-legal worldwide. The UK’s very forgiving road safety rules are all that allow their thriving mini track car industry — so BMW hoped to take the sheer joy of an open-cockpit, open-wheeled plaything to a global audience. Interesting details abound: the removable door panels keep their upper frame element in place for side crash protection …

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Mercedes-Benz Concept IAA (Intelligent Aerodynamic Automobile)

2015 Mercedes-Benz Concept IAA – Extreme Teardrop Drips Elegance for New Photoshoot

 This concept IAA is the best-looking among the trio of piloted-drive, alternative-propulsion concepts from big Benz this year. But how to love its active rear flange and sleek roofline, when the nose hits you like a punch in the cheek? Seeing the machine out in the wilds of natural light*, the integrated lighting up front creates a nicer glow. With so much solid white OLED in the grille slat edges, the inner portion resembles a more traditional V-shaped element. Even if it is just a matter of distance or movement, the IAA is undoubtedly stunning in these new photos —- …

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Concept Flashback - 2001 BMW X Coupe 4

Concept Flashback – 2001 BMW X Coupe

A design so unfeasible, we all thought, that it didn’t matter how unviable. An SUV Coupe?  Ruthlessly absurd! How wrong we were!  Car enthusiasts obviously recognize this compact crossover shape from more than three dozen new or upcoming road cars. The chopped roof, the bluff face and 1-series-previewing headlamps?  Z4 Coupe backlight, with the high rump of the X6? It all came true! Like a wild wet dream for gravel drifters… the X Coupe came well ahead of its time in 2001. Concept Flashback – 2001 BMW X Coupe

Road Test Review – 2015 Lexus NX300h – Future-Proof Cruiser

By now you have definitely done a double-take on seeing the 2015 Lexus NX on the road. At first, another of the RX cavalry. Then new creases, new LED graphics and a sleek and low roofline make clear this is no RX. With the lean and chic nose look off the RC and IS, the NX is a deeply stylish crossover in all three of its trimlines: NS200t, NX F Sport and the NX300h tested here.  Both the base turbo four and this uplevel Hybrid model share their appearances, with only the F Sport getting the aggressive front chin spoiler, …

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McLaren Wraps P1 Production with Painted Stunner, MSO Now Creating Full-Carbon Example

McLaren just announced the conclusion of P1 production. Just 375 units were promised in total, and those are now all built and on their way to eager owners! For the final P1, McLaren has flipped many of the bare-carbon surfaces to body color– in an interesting twist on the look of the hypercar hero.  The nose plate, side intakes and rear diffuser element are fully painted on this orange beauty, and we love the results.   You may or may not recall a set of renderings in an article titled “Unpainted CF Robbing Hypercars of their Beauty.” As a counterpoint, MSO …

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Spec Renderings – 500HP 2018 Volvo XC80 Polestar

It has been quite a while since a new Volvo stirred as much excitement as the 2016 XC90. The truck is absolutely miraculous, and an exciting new corporate re-alignment will see most of the XC90’s style and PHEV tech filter down throughout the range. The new S90 limo kicks things off, followed by (we predict) a lightly facelifted XC60 mid-size crossover. Beyond that, we have new S60/S70 models on the mid-term horizon — with the first Charleston, SC-built sedans set for a summer 2017 arrival as 2018 model-years. But if we were Volvo… what is the first possible thing to …

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McLaren MP4-X  24

McLaren MP4-X Detailed – Fascinating 2025 F1 Car Prototype Re-imagines Everything

This is much more than just a set of fantasy closed-cockpit renderings, as we first thought. This is a deeply interesting revision of the F1 racecar theme — so advanced that it might not just replace the current open-wheeled racers. It might be even more fascinating to watch run alongside them in an alternative race class! Call it FX1? Whatever the case, this official MP4-X concept car from McLaren Applied Technologies is a chock full of applicable design elements that could be racing tomorrow, if the circumstances allowed. The most noticeable change right off the bat is the closed and …

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SRT Tomahawk 2

FCA 2016 #DriveforDesign Contest Seeks Teen Input on 2025 Dodge SRT Hellcat!

On the heels of Ferrari’s very promising design challenge for 2015, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles just launched its multi-playform FCA Drive for Design contest. The objective for all entries is to envision a 2025 Dodge SRT Hellcat — and is limited to high school students in grades 10-12, sophomores to seniors.  The goal is to see what tomorrow’s design talent would do with the 2025 Hellcat in a no-limits world of the future. Will it be an open-wheeled racecar with tandem double cockpit? Or a mid-engine exotic like the SRT Tomahawk Vision Gran Turismo? 2015 SRT Tomahawk Vision Gran Turismo Or …

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Ferrari Design Challenge 2015 – Vote Your Future Hypercar Style!

Ferrari has been crowd-sourcing design ideas and talent since at least 2005 — with many of the ideas for the eventual LaFerrari sharing at least something with the design-student scale models and renders. This was after Ferrari pulled the marquee hypercar design contract back in-house from Pininfarina. ‘Crowd-sourcing’ is not really a fair description of this Design Challenge effort, though. Why? These entries are not ‘loser-generated-content’ from the public — but near-finished and highly thought-through prototypes.  So more of a creative shootout than simply hive-mind idea cultivation. For the 2015 contest, Ferrari switched the script in a few ways. Ferrari …

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Concept Flashback – 2011 Gumpert TORNANTE by Touring SuperLeggera

Touring Superleggera is one of the most iconic names in the history of Italian design boutiques. A resurgence of late has been hard-earned — many smaller projects during the financial crisis left the studio in gorgeous form, only to be let down by the realities of the market. The business of small-volume supercars is exceptionally precarious, and swallowed the AC Cars rebirth as well as Gumpert two years after this Tornante made its world debut in 2011. Gumpert is on life-support now — their Apollo hypercar was meant to be joined by a smaller and cheaper siblings: the Tornante and …

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Concept Flashback – 1988 ITALDESIGN Aspid – Tinted Bubble Canopy

PART TWO: The Aspid bubble hardtop. This Aztec is the first of two from the design studio’s 1988 releases — and is a huge piece of automotive coolness that might otherwise be lost to the ages. It is hard to get psyched about 80s concepts sometimes, but this Aztec’s influence on SO MANY CARS of the 1990s is clear as day. Camaro, Corvette, Probe, RX-7, MX-5, 300ZX… the list goes on and on. The mid-engine concept car runs a 250-horsepower Audi-sourced engine, but its most memorable part is the glasshouse. Twin mini windshields wrap around both passenger compartments, and open …

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Concept Flashback - 1988 ITALDESIGN Aztec 11

Concept Flashback – 1988 ITALDESIGN Aztec – Twin-Cowl Design Full of Ideas and Impact

  This Aztec is the first of two from the design studio’s 1988 releases — and is a huge piece of automotive coolness that might otherwise be lost to the ages. It is hard to get psyched about 80s concepts sometimes, but this Aztec’s influence on SO MANY CARS of the 1990s is clear as day. Camaro, Corvette, Probe, RX-7, MX-5… the list goes on and on. The mid-engine concept car runs a 250-horsepower Audi-sourced engine, but its most memorable part is the glasshouse. Twin mini windshields wrap around both passenger compartments, and open upward in butterfly arcs as the …

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Concept Debrief – 1972 Maserati Boomerang by GIUGIARO – Leading Wedge Hypercar

  The wedge. This design mantra took over the minds of the world’s top stylists collectively around 1970 – as the Ferrari 512 S Module and the Lancia Stratos HF Zero concepts swept everyone to accept the shape. The design was the ultimate expression of mid-engine hypercar engineering of the time. In wind tunnels of the day, the goal was to have as little front surface area as possible. Something like a rocket for the road. Ferrari 512 S Modulo at Atlanta Dream Cars exhibit http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2014/06/10/dream-cars-1970-ferrari-512s-modulo-pininfarina/       Lancia Stratos HF Zero at Atlanta Dream Cars exhibit http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2014/06/10/dream-cars-1970-lancia-stratos-hf-zero-by-bertone/ Wind …

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TrendWatch – Stenciled Tires Escape Racetrack, Sex Up Ferrari and Porsche Road Cars

Here is a trend that looks set to expand bigtime in the next few years:  race-branded tire sidewalls! This trend is really in the early stages of the curve — like dark wheels were in 2007 or 2008. The only production car we can think of featuring loud tire letters and colors so far is the Lamborghini Aventador Pirelli Edition, but more are surely on the way from OEM supercar brands and tire companies alike. Until then, the real tastemakers are taking matters into their own hands. These two stunning white exotics are extensively customized by GT Auto Concepts of …

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2016 Audi R8 LMS – New Open-Aero Design Analysis, Specs and Pricing

The new R8 is big news, of course, for supercar shoppers. Three models are set for the US range: the R8, R8 V10 and R8 V10 Plus. All sport AWD as standard and curb weights of 3500- and 3600-pounds. America will miss out on the limited-release R8 E-Tron but we will definitely see the fifth family member: the nearly unbeatable 2016 R8 LMS. This factory racecar is already outselling the existing model among dozens of top-tier sportscar racing teams. The reasons are simple: it is faster than ever thanks to cunning new aero and mechanicals. The biggest changes versus the …

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South African RED BULL Concept Truck is Defender 130 APC

  Stealthy? Not to our eyes!  This futuristic armored personnel carrier is a really sleek bit of design, even if its radar signature is huge. The truck is a bit mysterious at the moment. It appeared online about a week ago in a few obscure spots, but has since been removed from at least one official Red Bull channel… RedBull.co.za in South Africa.  Nada from LR or RB press people about it, nor even a name beyond “Armored Event Vehicle.” The only thing we know is the chassis underneath: a Land Rover Defender 130 donated its LWB rails to this …

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Bell & Ross BR-X1 Skeleton Carbon Forgé Leads New Lightweight Timepiece Collection

A new dream-watch just launched!  The Bell & Ross BR-X1 is named to honor the Bell X-1 supersonic test plane from 1947 — and employs tech just as advanced for 2015 watchmaking. Four initial styles of the BR-X1 are part of a very limited-release initial collection. The favorite of ours is the Carbon Forge model — as it has a very unique marbled finish, tinted sapphire crystal, and should be much lighter than the typical BR watches. Milled from single pieces of alloy, the heft of their watches makes you feel important. But does take time to get comfortable with …

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2016 Lexus RX450h F Sport AWD 93

HD Road Test Review – 2016 Lexus RX450h F Sport AWD – A Plush Rush?!

The new Lexus RX is one of the most eagerly-anticipated new SUVs for 2016.  This redesign proves the RX can be a style leader even while outselling entire luxury brands like Volvo and Jaguar in the USA. So far, the RX has been so ubiquitous on the roads that any sense of chic sexiness was seriously diluted.  The 2016 model wears all-new styles and new trimlines to bring variety to the efficiency, lux ride comfort and versatility its 2-million owners love so much. The upgrades for 2016 are extensive — with the entire cabin, exterior and some drivetrain parts refreshed …

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