วันพุธที่ 30 กันยายน พ.ศ. 2563

Prototype Test Drive: 2022 Volkswagen Taos

Fuel efficiency is the name of the Taos’s game.

Slated to arrive at dealership showrooms in the summer of 2021, Volkswagen's newest compact SUV, the 2022 Volkswagen Taos, enters VW's SUV and crossover lineup sandwiched between the Tiguan and the recently revealed ID.4. It will be built at the Puebla, Mexico plant, and is ready to go head-to-head with its adversaries in the fiercely competitive SUV kingdom. We recently visited the newly expanded Volkswagen Group Test Center in Oxnard, California, to take a quick test drive of a prototype version of the Volkswagen Taos.

2022 Volkswagen Taos Prototype: All New 1.5-Liter Engine

The Volkswagen Taos is powered by a new 1.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine generating 158 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque. A tad bit more powerful than the 1.4-liter engine used in the VW Jetta, this new engine promises to deliver suitable power and excellent fuel economy.

Featuring a higher compression ratio of up to 11.5:1, the new 1.5-liter engine uses a high-pressure injection system, map-controlled cooling module, air plasma sprayed (APS) cylinder coating, and a Variable Turbine Geometry (VTG) turbocharger. The results of this relatively exotic technology are good low-speed torque, a shorter time to warm up the engine, on-demand engine cooling, and faster heating of the vehicle interior, all in the name of fuel efficiency. Volkswagen's new 1.5-liter engine is the first volume production engine to employ VTG in North America.

2022 Volkswagen Taos Prototype: Drivetrain แม่จำเนียร

The Volkswagen Taos is available with two drivetrains to suit your driving style and your local environment. The standard front-wheel-drive Taos gets an eight-speed automatic transmission, a more economical choice for a commuter. For those who see snow or other slippery conditions for a good chunk of the year, there's the all-wheel-drive version, which also offers an optional upgrade to a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission.

2022 Volkswagen Taos Prototype: Interior, Tech, And Safety Features 

While we were able to take the Taos for a quick spin, Volkswagen kept the interior under wraps and did not disclose details on tech and driver assistance aids. Based on what we could spy through the camouflage, though, the interior looks similar to the current Tiguan's and features a slightly updated steering wheel that looks sporty and cool. What we do know is that the Taos will be 11 inches shorter in overall length than the Tiguan, but that doesn't appear to affect rear passenger legroom, as we also had a chance to sample the backseat.

2022 Volkswagen Taos Prototype: Driving Impressions Quick Take

For less than an hour, I had the opportunity to drive the Volkswagen Taos prototype outside of the VW facilities in Oxnard, testing the compact SUV on mostly rural and suburban roads. On the roughest of surfaces, including over railroad tracks, the Taos feels well-mannered. One caveat: The wheels on the prototype were not the ones that will be on the production vehicle, so it's possible the prototype's ride quality may not be completely representative of the eventual retail model.

At sudden stops, the brakes were reassuring, and during lane changes to pass slower-moving vehicles on the freeway, the Taos reflected agility and guts. Wind, road, and engine noises were almost invisible, and throttle response was reasonably on point, the Taos responding to my throttle inputs smoothly and relatively quickly.

2022 Volkswagen Taos Prototype: Pricing And Competition

The Volkswagen Taos prototype I drove briefly is close to the eventual production model's targeted configuration, according to Volkswagen. Pricing and fuel economy are yet to be released, but we estimate that the Volkswagen Taos will start somewhere in the ballpark of $22,995. VW's latest compact SUV will compete against the likes of the Hyundai Tucson, Nissan Rogue Sport, and Jeep Compass.

Intrigued? We should learn the official price of the 2022 Taos at the unveiling set to take place in mid-October, though VW may hold back pricing until closer to the Taos's summer 2021 sales launch. Until then, we can sit back and relax—something the makers of the Taos's rivals are unlikely to be doing any time soon.


วันอังคารที่ 29 กันยายน พ.ศ. 2563

Ferrari Omologata Is a One-Off 812 Superfast With Retro Touches

 Commissioned by a European purchaser, this is the tenth one-off V-12 Ferrari has built since 2009.

Buying a new Ferrari is obviously a special experience, but there are always well-heeled folks who think even ticking all the option boxes or selecting a unique paint color aren't enough to set their car apart from other buyers'. Because of this, bespoke bodywork has become a big business, albeit not in terms of volume but rather money and prestige. Take the recently unveiled and very outrageous Aston Martin Victor, which is very much in this vein, as well as 10 V-12 Ferraris since 2009—a roster that now includes this one-of-one, 812 Superfast-based Ferrari Omologata custom creation.

Of course, for decades, custom bodywork was the norm rather than the exception for rarified European sports and luxury cars, and several coachbuilding outfits might body the same mechanicals—for example, you could have your early 1950s Ferrari 212 Inter bodied by Touring, Ghia, Vignale, Ghia-Aigle, or Pininfarina. But what was relatively commonplace then is nearly unthinkable today given the need for the whole vehicle to work as a system optimized to meet safety standards, aero targets, and so forth.

And this kind of coachwork is even rarer, more expensive, and more customized than ever before. It took two years for Ferrari to go from initial commission to final car, and the Modenese company says the entire exterior is all new save the windshield and headlamps. The customer sought a timeless design that also recalled the company's racing heritage—the Omologata's racing stripes and giant meatballs on the hood and doors definitely telegraph that. More important, the Omologata smoothes and settles down the frenetic aesthetic of the 812 Superfast, which is aggressive but perhaps too busy to be considered truly beautiful. The lines of the Omologata—Italian for "homologated," as a nod to racing-approved road cars—accentuate the car's overall length and proportions and especially its organic curves, rather than chopping it up visually. If a more classically beautiful Ferrari was the goal, the Omologata succeeds. แทงบอลออนไลน์

While Ferrari says little to nothing about the mechanicals, the basic 812 packs a 6.5-liter V-12 that makes 789 horsepower and 530 lb-ft of torque—and you know the Omologata isn't going to be any weaker. As such, the new owner can expect their car to hit 60 mph in something like 2.8 seconds, and to cover the quarter-mile in a scorching 10.4 seconds at 139 mph. And, of course, the Omologata will pack all of the other amazing chassis technology of the 812 Superfast.

Inside, special touches include electric blue accents on the seats and a crinkle-paint finish on some interior components that recalls some classic racing Ferraris' cam covers. The rest is black—surprisingly restrained considering the combination of blank slate and massive customization fee generally promote questionable frivolity. Instead, the Omologata is a coherent, if individualistic, reimagining of the 812 Superfast, and its owner now has a tasteful and classy—and, oh yes, hugely capable—Ferrari for the ages.

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2021 Audi E-Tron Sportback Is Your Everyday Electric Vehicle

With a little more range, it’d be perfect.


LOS ANGELES—Reviewing an electric vehicle like the 2021 Audi E-Tron Sportback is tricky for an old hack like me. EVs are still a novelty for many, and it's easy to focus only on electrical aspects like range, charging, and (most of all) that silent, satin-smooth power delivery. The way I see it, that sort of approach is rapidly becoming outdated. It won't be long before all-electric cars are, if not mainstream, then at least a common option, and I think it's time we start evaluating them like we would any other car. The 2021 Audi E-Tron is a great place to start. Electric or not, it's a fantastic vehicle and one I really enjoyed driving.

For those unfamiliar, the big story behind the E-Tron Sportback is not so much its electrical powertrain as its body. It's got all the same mechanical pieces as the 2019 E-Tron SUV; what sets it apart is the A7-esque hatchback body style. The E-Tron Sportback toes the line between crossover and sedan-on-stilts.

As soon as it arrived, I hopped in and headed north toward my favorite curvy roads. On the freeway ride to Malibu, the Audi was lovely, its ride pillow-soft and extraordinarily quiet, even without the optional dual-pane side windows. The view out is, shall we say, unusual: The driving position and windshield shape are reminiscent of a car, but your height off the road feels like a particularly tall SUV. Credit (or blame, depending on your perspective) goes to the battery pack, which is mounted under the floor and raises everything accordingly.

2021 Audi E-Tron Sportback Shows Us How Much Fun An EV Can Be

Now, if you're worried that the decline of the internal combustion engine will mean the end of motoring joy, I can assure you that the best is still ahead of us. I had a great time piloting the E-Tron Sportback through the curves, all the while recalling something John Lamm wrote in a 1972 Cadillac review for our sister publication, MotorTrend: "The Cad rides like a Chevrolet with a 1,200-pound steel slab welded to the bottom of the frame. Handles that way, too." I always thought he meant that as a dig, but now that I found myself driving a car with a 1,600-pound slab welded to the bottom of the frame (bolted, really), lemme tell ya, friends and neighbors, this is the way to motor. That low center of gravity all but obliterates body lean, and the big tires gripped strongly and gave plenty of early warning before letting go. Weight balance is near 50/50, and the steering feels light and precise. Too much speed yields gentle understeer, just like most all-wheel-drive Audis.

The E-Tron Sportback comes with air springs as standard, and it demonstrated everything I love about an air suspension: Great handling and a ride as smooth as the proverbial baby's butt-cheek, even with the car in Dynamic mode.

Range And Charging For The 2021 Audi E-Tron Sportback

I also discovered the disadvantages of hot-dogging in an electric car: On my way up the hill, I used up 20 miles of range in just over two miles of driving. Range is a sore spot with the Audi, as the anticipated EPA range (not finalized at the time of writing) from its 95-kWh battery is 218 miles, far short of the 300-or-so offered by Tesla's SUVs and promised by Ford's all-electric Mustang Mach-E. I happen to believe that "range anxiety" is part state-of-mind and part myth. Most EV owners charge at home, and the average American drives less than 35 miles per day, so 218 (or even 118) is plenty for most driving. But for long distance driving, 218 miles is a short tether.

On the plus side, the E-Tron Sportback supports 150-kW charging, which can theoretically get the car from empty to 80 percent in 30 minutes. (Charging slows down as the battery fills up.) I stopped by one of Electrify America's 150 kW chargers, and got from 38 percent (85 miles of range) to 76 percent (163 miles) in 22 minutes. I picked up my first 20 miles of added range in the first 5 minutes of charging,

Back to the curvy roads: I don't have a charger at home, so I slowed down as I approached the summit, but only a little. That wasn't easy—the E-Tron may be tuned for comfort, but it's the kind of car that just begs you to speed up in the corners. If Audi ever comes up with a performance electric—may I be the first to suggest they call it the RS-Tron?—I am so going to run out of juice on a canyon road somewhere.

Happily, the rule in Malibu is that which goes up must drop back down to sea level. For the downhill sections I used the steering wheel paddles, which control the amount of accelerator-off regenerative braking (there are three stages of regen, if you want to get granular), and with judicious use I was able to pick up plenty of power while keeping momentum through the curves. The game I set for myself was to drive as fast as I could without touching either pedal. I had more fun doing this than I should probably admit to, and by the time I got to the end of my route I was showing the same range remaining as I had when I started. God bless you, Isaac Newton, wherever you are.

Power When You Need It And Serenity All The Time

I'll pat myself on the back for exhibiting such restraint, because it's easy to get carried away with the E-Tron Sportback's available power. The dual-motor all-wheel-drive powertrain is rated at 355 horsepower and 414 lb-ft, and will boost to 401 hp and 490 lb-ft if you shift to Sport mode and push past the point of resistance near the end of the accelerator pedal's travel. It's hard to describe the feel of 490 lb-ft of electric torque, because it's not at all like a gasoline car, where it takes time to build, then trails off. Floor the e-Tron at any speed, and you just sort of get magicked to whatever speed you want (or, more frequently, a speed well beyond, up to its top speed of 124 mph). Some day, when all cars drive like this, we're going to wonder why the hell we ever bothered with internal-combustion power.

Having already discovered the delights of the e-Tron Sportback on the freeway, I took the city streets home. What can I say about the car except that it's lovely here, too? A bit big, perhaps—the E-Tron Sportback is a much larger car than it appears from the outside, and you'll feel that from behind the wheel. But it's smooth and quiet and serene to a degree that gasoline cars have trouble approaching at any price.

2021 Audi E-Tron Sportback's Cabin Is Modern And Functional

Like its powertrain, the E-Tron Sportback's dash represents Audi's latest-and-greatest, with crisp LCD screens in place of traditional buttons and gauges. I'm still getting used to virtual climate controls—changing temperature and fan speed by tapping or swiping on the screen—but I like that when you press one of the E-Tron's virtual buttons, you get physical feedback in the form of an audible click and a vibration from the screen. It makes the transition that much easier. And I love, love, love, love Audi's moving-map instrument panel display with its satellite imagery (even if that's more useful for helicopter pilots than earthbound drivers).

A few things I don't like: The slab of open-pore wood that bisects the dashboard looks totally out of place to me, as if "wood" was on the checklist and someone fulfilled the obligation without considering the consequences. (My wife disagreed, she thought it looked fine.) The center console is a big gaping hole that can only be partially covered by the armrest, and something about that just annoys me—there ought to be a sliding panel to seal it closed.

As for the whole Sportback thing, obviously you give up some cargo space compared to the e-Tron SUV. The eTron's cargo floor sits nearly at waist level for a short guy like me, owing partially to the fact that Audi stubbornly insists on fitting the car with a real spare tire. (How could they?) Underhood space is taken up by make-the-car-go stuff, but there's a small covered compartment big enough for the home charging cord, and it'll accommodate handbags or other valuables one wishes to hide from prying eyes.

The Sportback body gives up some rear-seat height compared to the E-Tron SUV, but I found plenty of headroom (I'm 5'6", so no surprise there) and easy ingress/egress. I see it as a small price to pay for the Sportback's handsome lines, which make the E-Tron SUV look dowdy and matronly by comparison.

Is The 2021 Audi E-Tron Sportback The EV To Buy?

Speaking of prices to pay, the spread for the E-Tron Sportback is $70,195 for the Premium model (including destination fee and before the $7,500 Federal tax credit) and $83,395 for the top-of-the-line Prestige. My mid-level 2021 Audi E-Tron Sportback Prestige Plus, with optional metallic paint and rear-seat thorax airbags, split the difference at $80,090. That puts it in the same general price range as Tesla's big SUV, the Model X, which goes farther on a charge and has more fancy bits (falcon-wing doors!) but isn't as well engineered.

What I like best about the 2021 Audi E-Tron Sportback is that it presents a realistic vision of our electric future. As an EV, it's cool—but if you ignore its powertrain, it's still cool: It looks good, rides like a Rolls, and is good fun to drive. Shame about the range, though, because the E-Tron Sportback has all the makings of a great long-distance car. If Audi can get the range to that magic 300-mile mark, the E-Tron Sportback will be as easy to live with as it is to review.

2021 Audi E-Tron Sportback Highlights ufa.bet

Mechanically similar to Audi E-Tron SUV

355 horsepower, with boost to 402 hp

95-kWh battery, 218-mile range

4,000-lb towing capacity when properly equipped

2021 Audi E-Tron Sportback Pros

Luxury-yacht ride with respectable sporty handling

Control interface is high tech yet easy to use

Looks way cooler than regular E-Tron SUV

2021 Audi E-Tron Sportback Cons

EPA range rating falls short of other long-distance EVs

A few annoyances in the interior

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วันพฤหัสบดีที่ 24 กันยายน พ.ศ. 2563

2021 Volkswagen ID.4: VW’s Electric-Car Future Is Here

VW’s first mass-market foray into EVs begins with this compact crossover.

Lest you think Volkswagen is merely talking a big game around its future as an electric-car-focused brand, let VW America's COO and industry legend Johan de Nysschen lay it out.

"The [2021 VW ID.4 electric car] is the most important new Volkswagen debut since the Beetle," he said casually during a private debut event for the new electric-car crossover vehicle. "Where the Beetle brought mobility to the masses, the ID.4 brings e-mobility to the millions, not the millionaires." Quite the catchy slogan, but catchy is what VW hopes for the 2021 ID.4, intentionally positioning its first full-scale production EV in the U.S., in the country's hottest-selling segment.

2021 VW ID.4: The Electric-Car/Crossover Ticket

Instead of launching the new ID sub-brand here with a cluster of quirky, bubble-bodied hatchbacks that would have likely undersold and come to be considered by consumers as nothing more than stylistic oddities, VW's first electric-car feint on our shores is into the compact crossover segment. This is a space occupied by A-List best-seller mega-stars like the Toyota RAV4, Honda CR-V, and Chevrolet Equinox.

Of course, while buyers in this segment are probably some of the least likely to take purchasing risks, VW did its due diligence and double-checked its homework—according to VW, 30 percent of compact-crossover buyers are ready to make the switch to EVs. Not a huge number, but considering there are more than 4 million new compact crossovers sold during normal economic conditions, the 2021 VW ID.4 electric car might be poised to capture a significant chunk of those sales. The ID.4 is set to start landing in customers' hands in early 2021, with order reservations open now

2021 Volkswagen ID.4: Electric-Car Range Anxiety? Not Here

So, with a $55-billion investment in ongoing EV development, the sleek 2021 VW ID.4 lands as the first reasonably priced all-electric compact crossover, standing a full segment-size larger than the Hyundai Kona EV and that car's sibling, the Kia Niro EV. VW wants and needs to make sure this appeals not just to the EV-curious, but to the greater buying populace as a whole.

Range anxiety is usually the No. 1 reason people cite as causing them to hesitate to make the jump, but VW says the average reported distance a compact-crossover driver will travel daily is 59 miles, with only 88 percent of those people reporting they driving more than 100 miles in a usual day. "For some reason, some buyers have it in their heads that they drive across the country once a week," de Nysschen chuckled. "If they do take one of those mythical roadtrips, they can stop and charge it."

At launch, the 2021 VW ID.4 electric car has an 82-kWh battery sending juice to a single rear-mounted motor, returning 201 horsepower and 228 lb-ft of torque, but more importantly 250 miles of range on the EPA cycle. The range is not ironclad quite yet, but VW tells us to expect it to be just above or just below that 250-mile sweet spot. Find yourself running low, and the ID.4 drinks from up to a 125-kW fast charger, shooting the ID.4 from 5- to 80-percent charge in 38 minutes.

If you aren't near a fast charger, expect the 11 kW onboard charger to charge the battery enough to travel 33 miles, in about one hour, and complete a full battery charge in around 7.5 hours at a home or public Level 2 charger. VW will sometime next year launch a dual-motor AWD ID.4 with 302 combined horsepower, and a slightly lower range. Have a small boat or RV trailer to tow? VW claims the ID.4 leads the class with a 2,700-pound towing capacity. Regardless of spec, VW is happy to announce all ID.4s come with three years of free fast-charging service through Electrify America.

2021 Volkswagen ID.4: Style And Substance

It certainly looks the part of VW's EV renaissance. The 2021 ID.4 is very much what we hoped and imagined this electric car would look like—a less aggressive productionized translation of 2017's I.D. Crozz concept. It's an effortlessly stylish design, with strong brand identity balanced with clear-cut conservatism as to not alienate those who are more interested in fitting in than standing out. In other words, compact-crossover buyers. Through the use of clever aerodynamics, lip spoilers, and underbody packaging, the ID.4 slips through the wind with a 0.28 drag coefficient.

Inside, it's a cool, future-forward environment with smart packaging, especially in the driver's quadrant. A 5.3-inch digital dash frames the view ahead of the electric car's driver, while buyers have the choice of either a 10- or 12-inch infotainment display that harbors controls for the aforementioned radio, navigation, media, and climate control. Beneath the screen, touch controls handle additional climate functions, and you also find a handful of essential menu-navigation buttons. Drive functions are operated via a nifty, cluster-mounted shift array that looks straight out of "Blade Runner." Like other electric cars, the 2021 VW ID.4 supports seamless turn-on; that is, once you're seated and ready to go, just put it into drive and set-off without any need for hitting a start/stop button.

Early adopters of the ID.4 are more likely to be tech-gurus, and VW hopes to court them with standard features like wireless charging, adaptive interior lighting, gesture controls, four USB-C ports, wireless app connect, and VW's full range of driver-assistance systems packaged as IQ.Drive. Spec it right, and the ID.4 incorporates a full panoramic glass roof and power tailgate with easy-open gesture function.

As VW put it, this has to be an excellent compact-crossover vehicle first, and an electric car second; the fact it's all electric should just be icing on the cake. As such, there is essentially identical passenger space in the ID.4 compared to the Toyota RAV4 and Honda CR-V, right down to leg and shoulder room. Out back, 30.3-cubic-feet of cargo space with a bi-level loading floor provides a smidge less than the competition, but more than enough for regular use and occasional fold-down second-row duties that gives a combined 64.2 cubic feet.

2021 Volkswagen ID.4: Electric-Car Numbers Game

Of course, the biggest factor in all of this is price, as it's no use going against the industry's best if you can't match them financially. The 2021 VW ID.4 electric car starts at $39,995, before the applicable EV tax credit or state-level incentive, equipped with the mid-level "Pro" trim. With an average segment transaction price of around $33,000, VW thinks this is right on the money, while also promising a lower-cost entry-level model is on its way in the near future that's predicted to land around $35,000. For $43,995, an ID.4 1st Edition combines the available Statement package (vegan leatherette, panoramic roof, power tailgate, premium lighting) and the Gradient package (20-inch wheels, bi-color package with black roof) with 1st Edition-specific touches that include white accents inside and out, small 1st Edition badging, contrast mirror caps, and some seriously adorable Play/Pause graphics on the throttle and brake pedals. แทงบอลออนไลน์

So, finally, VW's electrified future in America is here, and it's every bit as cohesive as we hoped it would be. If the 2021 VW ID.4 sounds like an electric car you'd like to snap-up for yourself, VW will hold you a car if you pay a $100 reservation fee, ahead of those deliveries beginning early next year.


2021 Volkswagen ID.4 Fast Facts

First all-electric compact-crossover SUV in the S.

Around 250 mile range

Launches VW's ID sub-brand in the U.S.

Starts at less than $40,000, with a cheaper model on the way

Three years of free fast-charging service

5- to 80-percent battery charge in less than 40 minutes with fast charging

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2021 Acura TLX First Drive: A Seriously Strong Sports Sedan

 After discovering how the regular TLX drives, we can’t wait for the new Type-S.

MALIBU, California- You know, Acura didn't have to redesign and launch the new 2021 Acura TLX in the way it did. Not that an automaker has a duty to do anything at all, but placing significant investment into how its new premium sedan might appeal to an enthusiast isn't exactly a sure-fire way to make some cash. Catering to what car dorks think they want these days is a good way to burn a big pile of corporate greenbacks, regardless of the product's impeccable spec-sheet or bucket of go-fast goodies.

Acura's repositioning of the new TLX as a driver's car is more impressive still when you consider the fact parent company Honda—ever the enthusiast's best friend—is in a state of fanboy retraction, cutting the manual transmission from the Accord, and entirely nixing the adorable Fit and racy Civic Coupe families. It's not like the outgoing TLX was a salesroom dud, either; last year, Acura moved more than 26,000 TLXs in the U.S., and while this isn't within reach of the BMW 3-Series' 47,827 units, it handily outstripped the Lexus IS' 14,920 units, and it matched the 26,435 Audi A4s sold.

2021 Acura TLX: A Welcome Shift

So, Acura could have just as easily made another sharp-ish, easy-driving premium four-door and continued to let that stack of cash grow larger as the sedan segment continues to shrink in the coming years. It could have told the handful of true Acura enthusiasts left to pound sand, and not spent the time and resources developing an Acura-exclusive platform that incorporates a double-wishbone front suspension, NSX-derived brake servo, and according to the product presentation and supplied materials, a vastly improved dash-to-axle ratio. Color us surprised, intrigued, and excited for the new 2021 Acura TLX, all at once.

In the ongoing gradual march toward total crossover-vehicle dominance, and the eventual proliferation of electric cars, a new sedan designed from the lowest levels of production as something with drivers in mind feels like a warm cup of cappuccino and a tight hug in the midst of a storm. Adding to that, the thought of the forthcoming Audi S4-battling TLX Type-S model landing later next year hangs on us like our favorite hoodie. It seems there may be crepuscular rays lancing through the clouds, and we're totally here for it.

All this fuzziness before we even got a chance behind the wheel. Before that happened, we had to decipher just what went into the new 2021 Acura TLX, and where Acura's bread-and-butter sedan now sits in the hyper-competitive premium-sedan segment. The first thing you'll notice is the size differential compared to the old car; this is one of many new segment straddlers we're beginning to see fill in the gaps between the showroom superstars like sand between marbles. Acura knows it can't hope to compete with the eternally popular BMW 3-Series, 5-Series, and Mercedes-Benz C- and E-Class, so why not blur the lines a bit? For 2021, the Acura TLX goes upmarket in size, stretching an extra 2.9 inches in length, 2.2 inches in width, and surprisingly dropping half-an-inch in height. The wheelbase and track grow too, with an additional 3.7-inches on the wheelbase and 1.2 inches extra front track, and 1.5 inches for the rear track.

2021 Acura TLX: Looking The Part

Visually, the new TLX is longer, leaner, and lower. That dash-to-axle mention above was no joke; compared to the older car, Acura added 7.8 inches to the distance, giving the TLX a markedly more purposeful stance and sharp profile. Acura's trademark angularity still very much runs thick, but it's a much more cohesive and pleasing design overall. There's tension to the pinched, creased lines, and it works as a natural progression of what we've come to expect from the automaker.

The interior is redesigned to the same degree. Like the exterior, much of what you find inside takes cues from the current RDX crossover, especially in the center console. The same flat, waterfall-style control cluster for the 10-speed automatic transmission cascades from a large drive-mode selector knob, framed on both sides by seat heating/cooling and climate controls. A 10.2-inch HD screen sits atop the center dash, controlled by Acura's "True Touchpad Interface" just south of the shift cluster. The moderately aggressive and quite handsome steering wheel is similar to the one found in the RDX, as is the red-accented silver gauge cluster, lending a racy feel to the whole affair, regardless of how you spec your TLX.

2021 Acura TLX: What Was Two Is Now One

Speaking of spec, what's under that creased hood up front is the same across the board. Gone is both the base-level naturally aspirated 2.4-liter four-cylinder and the optional natty 3.5-liter V-6, now supplanted by a variant of the Honda K20C4 2.0-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder found in the RDX.

Compared to the crossover, power and torque remain the same 272 horsepower and 280 lb-ft, routed to either the front or all-four wheels via the aforementioned 10-speed automatic. This is down 18 hp compared to the discontinued V-6, but up 13 lb-ft; those sticking with the base-level TLX will reap the biggest benefits, as the turbo-four pumps an additional 66 hp and 98 lb-ft of torque against the old 2.4-liter.

Not too shabby for what Acura touts as a sports sedan. In that pursuit, the new 2021 TLX is a significant departure from the prior Accord-based TLX. It features an Acura-exclusive platform with a sizable roster of noteworthy dynamic and structural upgrades when superimposed over the old TLX, a product of developing the new sedan with plans for the future Type-S baked into the design. As mentioned above, one of the more substantial changes is the move to a double-wishbone front suspension from the previous strut design, working in tandem with a multi-link rear suspension setup, and dramatically improved structural appointments that increase overall torsional rigidity by an impressive 50 percent, Acura says.

There's a slight increase in weight distribution, now 57/43 front/rear compared to the earlier TLX's 60/40. Most hardware is reworked as well, including an updated electric power-steering system and a brake-by-wire arrangement that includes control componentry cribbed from the NSX. The fourth-generation of Acura's trademark SH-AWD system manages the new powertrain, capable of sending up to 70 percent of power to the rear wheels, and able to shift 100 percent of power from right-to-left via torque vectoring. All this go-fast stuff, and we're not even close to the Type-S yet.

Moving back to suspension for a moment: Depending on which trim you pick, the new 2021 Acura TLX holds either standard "Amplitude Reactive Dampers"—a fancy name for Acura's two-valve damper design that allows for variable spring rates—or the TLX Advance's adaptive damper setup. Curiously, the TLX A-Spec is not available with the adaptive suspension, despite remaining the aesthetically sportiest of all of the non-Type-S TLXs.

2021 Acura TLX: So Far, So Good

All this is to say Acura put an impressive amount of engineering and work into returning the Acura calipers to their rightful place on the snout of a real-deal sports sedan. With a barrage of percentages, ratios, and charts flying at us during the pre-drive breakdown, and genuinely overjoyed and very enthusiastic Acura engineers and product planners rallying around the new TLX, it was difficult approaching the new premium sedan with anything other than sky-high expectations.

The day's drive route took us on a circuitous route through the Malibu hills and coastal roads that placed us in a variety of different scenarios and environs; both the roads and the region are ones in which we are intimately familiar with, so we improvised at some junctions to wring out the TLX properly. At some points, these roads turn serpentine and narrow to a fault; any small dynamic issues presented by the TLX would be magnified tenfold.

We started in the A-Spec with the fixed dampers, cutting a path up the backside of Mulholland Highway before landing beachside on the Pacific Coast Highway. Right off the bat, the 2021 Acura TLX feels sharp and well-balanced—an innate base level of confidence that encourages heavy right-foot inputs and late-ish braking. Even without the adaptive dampers, body composure is excellent, with minimal roll and predictable reactions during long sweepers and tight, technical turns alike. Steering is light and without much feel, but turn-in is quick and predictable. Considering the intended market, we'd say this is right on-beat, but for a sports sedan, we'd like a little more feedback.

2021 Acura TLX: Tire Troubles

In the TLX Advance, we defected from the route to explore the Advance's adaptive suspension more thoroughly through one of the more vicious sections of tarmac in Southern California. As expected, the adaptive suspension proved even more predictable and progressive, though not to such a degree we'd decry those who settle for the fixed suspension. Regardless of the spec, all TLXs rode smooth and quiet over regular surface streets, with all the poise necessary for the car's premium standing. When the quietness started to make us a little stir-crazy, blasting some surfy tunes from the Panasonic ELS Studio 17-speaker system was top-notch.

Unfortunately, in both Advance and A-Spec form, the new 2021 Acura TLX is under-tired for canyon-carving duty. The chassis greatly outpaces the standard Michelin Primacy all-season tires, with the relatively squishy rubber screaming at full volume even during low-ish speed maneuvers. However, despite the protesting, grip was maintained for most sane speeds, with understeer arriving only at the threshold of enthusiasm. For the majority of TLX buyers, this tire is perfect; for those who commute through the canyons, consider making a simple tire swap to fix the problem outright and have yourself quite the capable sports sedan.

2021 Acura TLX: Engine Chatter

Power from the 2.0-liter engine feels healthy, but since the 2021 Acura TLX isn't exactly the lightest compact/midsizer on the block, acceleration feels somewhere in the mid-to-low 6-second range. The SH-AWD Advance we grabbed the most seat time in spun the scales at 4,028 pounds, just a few pounds shy of a similarly equipped RDX. Of course, looking over the fleet of cars the TLX is up against, it falls somewhere between the 3,900-pound BMW 530i xDrive and the 4,100-pound Audi A6, and the Acura has noticeably more power and torque than those Germans.

it's heavy, but the 2.0-liter never dragged when stepping into the passing lane or charging up steep mountainous inclines. The transmission was similarly snappy, though it's understandably tuned more for slogging through the city than setting a lap record at Suzuka. If you do plan on whipping around your new TLX, there's a whole suite of drive modes ranging from Comfort, Normal, Sport, and Individual that remaps the throttle, shift points, steering, torque vectoring, and adaptive suspension, where available.

2021 Acura TLX: Worthy Of Acura's Legacy

As far as premium sports sedans go, the new 2021 Acura TLX is a good one; with a new set of performance all-seasons and fine-tuned steering, the TLX would be one of the sharpest in both the compact- and midsize-executive segments, despite sitting comfortably between both. It gets even better when you look at how much this is going to cost you—not a whole lot, comparatively speaking.

The cheapest front-wheel-drive 2021 Acura TLX starts at $38,525, jumping to $40,525 to get a base-level TLX with the vaunted SH-AWD. This is right around—or less than—what you would pay for a base-level Audi A4, Mercedes-Benz C 300, and BMW 330i, and significantly less than the midsize BMW 5-Series, Mercedes-Benz E 350, and Audi A6, all of which share similar dimensions to the Acura. The TLX even features a baked-in suite of active driver-safety systems like adaptive cruise control, lane-keep assist, and automatic braking; the same cannot be said for the rest of the gang, though the smaller Lexus IS and Genesis G70 match the Acura in safety content, but not in size.

The new 2021 Acura TLX is a mighty fine effort and an excellent modern interpretation of the type of Acura sports sedan we used to enjoy so much. Like we said, all this brow sweat and engineering didn't have to happen—this is a rare case of enthusiasts getting a chance at the development reins, and it shows. With this level of attention to detail levied on the mass-market product, we can't wait to see what Acura has in store for the TLX Type-S.

2021 Acura TLX Fast Facts ufa.bet

A shift from sharp-ish compact to premium sports midsizer

Bigger than before, but far less expensive than the competition

New double-wishbone front suspension

Sole 2.0-liter turbo-four engine one of the more potent in the segment

Great chassis

Can't wait for the Type-S


วันอังคารที่ 22 กันยายน พ.ศ. 2563

About Face: The 2021 Ford Bronco Sasquatch Package *Will* Offer a Manual Transmission

The off-roadiest Bronco option bundle can now be paired with the seven-speed stick.

 Ford's launch of the reborn 2021 Bronco SUV couldn't have gone much better. Its retro-flavored styling struck the right balance between old-school and modern. The lineup is appropriately broad, with models aimed at city slickers and boulder bashers alike. And the First Edition sold out, saw its production doubled, and then sold out again. But one large misstep loomed: The rough-and-tumble Sasquatch package, the key to unlocking the Bronco's maximum off-road capability, couldn't be paired with a manual transmission. That's now changed.

Citing feedback from reservation holders, Ford confirmed it has decided to offer the Bronco's seven-speed manual transmission with the Sasquatch gear on both the SUV's two- and four-door body styles. As a refresher, the gearbox is a Getrag-sourced 7MTI550 seven-speed manual, with six forward gears in a conventional pattern and a crawler gear (marked "C") located left and down from the first set of gates. The crawler gear—also known as a granny gear—is a super-low ratio that allows the Bronco to, well, slowly crawl over almost anything in its path.

The Sasquatch package is available on every Bronco—base, Big Bend, Black Diamond, Outer Banks, and Badlands, and standard on First Edition and Wildtrak—and brings 35-inch all-terrain Goodyear rubber; fatter flares; an additional suspension lift; high-travel, position-sensitive Bilstein shocks; two additional inches of track; 17-inch beadlock-capable wheels; and front and rear locking differentials with a 4.71 final-drive. The Sasquatch/manual pairing will offer a 94.75:1 maximum crawl ratio. Combine that with the go-anywhere goodies and you have one hell of a capable trail rig.

Official orders—for those who didn't get in a pre-order-will open in December, but manual Sasquatch 2021 Bronco two- and foor-door models aren't going on sale until late 2021. That's likely due to Bronco production already being allocated to the various other available combinations.

Now that this oversight has been corrected, there was actually one more thing we'd like to ask for: a V-8 Bronco to battle Jeep's forthcoming Hemi-powered Wrangler. Ford has already confirmed it won't offer one, but the Sasquatch-package rig didn't always offer a manual, did it? แทงบอลออนไลน์

2021 Hyundai Sonata N Line: The Sporty Sedan Lines Up a Big Power Bump

 The midsize family sedan is set to receive Hyundai's N Line upgrades—and new turbo engine.

The big-name German performance brands all sell performance in various packages and steps, from BMW's M Sport or Mercedes-Benz's AMG packages to full-blown M and Mercedes-AMG models. Hyundai aspires to follow in these footsteps with N models like North America's Veloster N and Europe's i30 N at the top of the retail pyramid (factory racing N cars occupy the ultimate peak of the pyramid) and a widening line of N Line models occupying the rung beneath them. First to get the N Line treatment was the Elantra GT N Line, and next up are the Elantra and Sonata sedans.

Not too much info has been shared on the full Sonata N Line package, but at a powertrain backgrounder in December 2019, we learned that the heart of this new beast is a turbocharged 2.5-liter "Smartstream" gasoline direct injection (TGDI) engine that should make 290 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque. That represents a 52 percent power bump and a significant 71 percent more torque than the next-hottest-performing Sonata, a turbocharged 1.6-liter good for 191 hp and 181 lb-ft. Relative to the Elantra GT N Line's 25 and 30 percent bumps in power and torque, that's pretty impressive.

A performance boost of that magnitude will require commensurate reinforcement and re-tuning of the brakes, springs, and dampers, which engineers are no doubt putting the finishing touches on. Will the team be able to transform this sizeable front-drive sedan into a credible back-road burner that performs somewhere between an Elantra GT and a Veloster N? Consider our fingers well and truly crossed.

Performance aside, the N Line kit comes with a number of visual updates relative to the standard Sonata, including a new fascia, racier grille, and three large air intakes. Around the back sits a new rear bumper with dual exhaust outlets flanking a new lower fascia. A set of 19-inch alloys help complete the sportier look. Inside, the model benefits from dark chrome trim, more heavily bolstered seats, red stitching on the steering wheel, and N Line badging (how else are you supposed to know you're in a Sonata with a little extra flair?).

Then comes the question of what Hyundai will charge for such a device. If it applies the same roughly 20 percent upcharge that one pays to upgrade a base Elantra GT automatic to an Elantra GT N Line with its seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission, then that should bring the price of an SEL-spec Sonata N Line to around $34,000, or a Limited grade one to $41,000. It's a bad idea to load a performance car up to Limited spec anyway, and with the Accord 2.0T Touring topping out at $37,355 and a loaded Camry XSE V-6 just cresting $39,000, we'd expect the Sonata N Line to be spec'd to price out a little shy of $40,000. ufa.bet

วันจันทร์ที่ 21 กันยายน พ.ศ. 2563

Terrible Cars That Shouldn’t Have Been Terrible: Chevrolet Vega


With the might of GM behind it, the Vega should have been great. It wasn’t.

The Chevrolet Vega is remembered as one of General Motors' worst cars, a troublesome rust-bucket prone to gas tank fires and melting engines. It's easy to assume that the Vega was a sign of GM's hubris, cobbled together on the cheap like the AMC Gremlin for a public that would stop buying imported subcompacts as soon as there were viable American alternatives. In fact, the opposite was true. The Vega was designed and built with new processes and procedures that should have made it the most advanced small car on the market.

So how did it all go wrong? How did the Vega end up being so terrible?

The Sleeping Giant Awakens
On October 3rd, 1968, at the opening of the new General Motors Building in Manhattan, chairman Jim Roche broke with GM tradition: He talked about future product. In two years, he said, GM would introduce a revolutionary small car that would weigh less than a ton, cost less than the Volkswagen Beetle, use an advanced aluminum engine, and would be built with the most automated assembly process ever developed. GM would even develop a unique railcar to ship it to dealers.

It was a surprising announcement from GM, which was perceived as having long since lost its innovative edge to Ford. The interpretation was that the sleeping giant was awakening, and that the car—code-named XP-887—would swat away those pesky imports like so many flies.

Unbeknownst to outsiders, however, the XP-887 was creating all sorts of problems within GM's walls.

Centralizing A Decentralized Company
In the mid-1960s, GM was still closely following Alfred Sloan's system of centralized policymaking and decentralized operations. Though basic car platforms were shared, each division did the bulk of its own engineering and marketing and managed its own plants. Chevrolet and Pontiac were diligently working on their own subcompacts, but according to John DeLorean's authorized-then-unauthorized biography, On a Clear Day You Can See General Motors, there was a third mini-car in development. Ed Cole, Executive Vice President of GM's Operating Staffs, was bucking corporate tradition by having the corporate engineering staff work on its own subcompact. When Cole was named GM president in 1967, he forced his mini-car on the Chevrolet division in place of its own. Pontiac was cut out entirely.

Outsiders didn't know any of this, nor did they know that when Roche made his announcement, the XP-887 existed only on paper with no prototypes yet completed. According to DeLorean, when GM's corporate engineering staff finally delivered its first prototype to Chevrolet, it lasted eight miles at GM's Milford proving ground before the front end separated from the rest of the car.

Chevrolet Vega: Leader Or Lemon?
That was only one of the problems Chevrolet found. Of paramount concern was the XP-887's engine. Chevrolet had developed a low-cost, short-stroke, iron-block engine, but Cole was intent on using aluminum, a choice traditionally ruled out for inexpensive cars because of the need for expensive iron cylinder sleeves. Reynolds Metals had developed an aluminum alloy that would allow sleeveless cylinders with iron-coated aluminum pistons. The engine used a long stroke for emissions and was topped with an iron head, and the result, according to DeLorean, was tall, top-heavy, and more expensive than Chevy's engine.

Besides the 20 pounds of material required to reinforce the front end, the XP-887 design did not incorporate the door crash beams that GM was installing in all of its cars. It quickly became obvious that the XP-887 wasn't going to meet the cost and weight goals promised by Roche, and Chevrolet engineers, resentful that their own design was pushed aside without due consideration, were disinclined to do anything about it.

Chevrolet Rallies Around The XP-887
DeLorean was named Chevrolet's general manager in 1969, and he convinced his troops that no matter how much they disliked the XP-887, it would be judged as a Chevrolet, and it was in the division's best interests for it to succeed. The marketing team determined that since the car couldn't make its targeted price, the best bet was to add in a few dollars' worth of trim and sell it as a premium model. They also came up with a name: Gemini, which tied into the US space program and had a familial ring ("G-M-eni").

Amazingly, most of these efforts were thwarted. Cole insisted on calling the car Vega, even though the name tested poorly, and the corporate financial staff nixed the upgraded trim. Chevrolet would have to sell a basic car at a premium price. When the Vega finally came to market, its $2,091 base price was $311 more than the Volkswagen Beetle and $172 more than Ford's new Pinto, and it was 200 pounds over its one-ton target weight.

Chevrolet Vega Meets The Press
For all the problems happening behind the scenes, media reception to the Vega was surprisingly good. DeLorean, ever the dedicated salesman, touted the Vega's highly advanced assembly process. Eighty percent of the body welds were automated, as opposed to 18 percent for a typical car of the time. The Vega's body had just over half as many parts as a full-size Chevy, and it was protected by a new six-stage rust-proofing process.

Car magazines liked the 1971 Vega's styling and handling. Power was meagre at highway speeds but significantly better than the Volkswagen Beetle, and braking stability was noted as the only serious problem. The Kammback wagon (which wasn't really a kammback) was particularly well-liked. MotorTrend named the Vega as its Car of the Year for 1971. Aside from its price and weight, it seemed that GM had delivered what Roche had promised: A well-built, competitive minicar.

Behind the scenes, however, a bad situation was getting worse. Chevrolet had gone to great lengths to ensure its Lordstown, Ohio plant could match the imports for quality by hiring additional quality-control staff, designing a computerized system to alert assembly staff to defects as soon as they were found, and extensively test-driving the first 2,000 cars made. The Vega got off to a strong start, but with only 24,000 cars built, the UAW went on strike against GM for two and a half months, cutting off the supply just as the first Vegas arrived at dealerships. With production constrained, 1971 sales fell about 150,000 units short of Chevrolet's forecast—and below sales of Ford's new-for-1971 Pinto.

With the 1971 model year effectively shot, Chevrolet focused on '72, optimistic about new economic policies from the Nixon administration that would put American subcompacts on a more even economic footing with the imports. But just after production of the 1972 models began, General Motors transferred control of Lordstown from Chevrolet to the General Motors Assembly Division. In order to cut costs, GMAD eliminated 700 jobs, including several quality-control positions, and scrapped the computerized defect-feedback system. The UAW accused GMAD of trying to get more work out of fewer workers and called a strike. A classic union-versus-management struggle erupted, with GM in the role of the bad guy. The headlines captured the imaginations of the young buyers to whom the Vega was supposed to appeal.

Discovering The Chevrolet Vega's Engineering Flaws
Right about this time, the severity of the Vega's problems was becoming apparent. Chevrolet recalled half a million Vegas in 1972. Rear axle shafts could separate from the housing, causing the wheels to literally fall off. Faulty brackets on the single-barrel carb jammed the throttle open. The optional two-barrel engine could backfire violently enough to split the muffler, blowing hot exhaust on the fuel tank and causing it to expand, rupture, and ignite.

An undiscovered defect in the new rust-proofing system left the underside of the front fenders unprotected. GM had rejected plastic fender liners to save money, and Vegas suffered from rapid corrosion—primarily of the fenders, but rocker panels, lower doors and front suspension parts could also be affected. One dealer told Automotive News that he was touching up rust spots on brand-new Vegas.

The Vega's best-remembered problem, however, was its infamous melting engine. The engine didn't actually melt, but if it got too hot the cylinders would distort, wearing the coating on the walls and forcing coolant past the head gaskets. The former problem increased oil consumption (exacerbated by faulty valve stem seals) and the latter increased the frequency of the overheating issue. If a Vega owner didn't keep the coolant topped off, the Vega could, and often would, destroy its own engine. Chevrolet extended the engine warranty and retrofitted an overflow bottle and low-coolant warning light, but not before many owners got replacement engines to go with their replacement fenders.

Chevrolet Fixes The Vega, But New Problems Arise
Chevrolet managed to iron out the bulk of the Vega's problems between 1973 and 1974, and even came up with a decent performance version, the 1975-76 Cosworth Vega. Despite all the damage done to its reputation, the Vega sold reasonably well—2 million examples over seven model years. By the end of its run in 1977, the Vega was a simple and reliable, if somewhat dated, economy car.

But the Vega was also an axe wielded by the Corporation to cause more damage. Pontiac, which had been working on its own small car in the late '60s, was given a version called the Astre. The automotive press saw it for what it was: A dressed-up, overpriced Chevrolet. This experiment in badge engineering set the stage for GM's upcoming disaster, the ill-fated front-wheel-drive 1980 X-car.

Why was the Chevrolet Vega so poorly executed? DeLorean blames its corporate origins, the fact that it was forced on Chevrolet with minimal engineering and marketing input, and the ill-timed GMAD takeover of the Lordstown plant. The Vega's innovative design and manufacturing advances had promise, and it's impossible to say if Chevrolet's own small car would have been any better. One thing is for sure: The Vega was a promising car that turned out to be truly terrible. แทงบอลออนไลน์

วันอาทิตย์ที่ 20 กันยายน พ.ศ. 2563

10 Awesome Nissan Z Special Edition Cars: From 240Z to 370Z

 The Nissan Proto Z Concept car is finally here to preview the next Z to enthusiasts excited to see what the company is going to cook up after 11 years of the 370Z. The heritage-inspired Proto Z previews what we're thinking will be called the 400Z—the latest in a long line of Z cars stretching back to 1969.

Over the years, the regular Zs have been special enough, but occasionally Nissan built (or collaborated with a company who could build) some special, limited-edition models. Rare, interesting, and definitely unique, these run the gamut from go-fast specials to luxury cosmetic packages. Take a trip through Nissan's special Z car history with us.

1970 240Z Fairlady Z432/Z432R

The original 240Z's inline-six was potent enough for the period, but no one could blame Nissan for trying to hot-rod. That's exactly what the Z432 is. Under the hood is an S20 engine making 158 horsepower. That engine was pulled directly out of the legendary, range-topping Skyline 2000GT-R, giving it even more mystique. It could rev out to 7,000 RPM, wild for the time. The "432" part of the name refers to its four valves per cylinder, triple carburetors, and twin camshafts, respectively. Extremely rare and very expensive at the time (nearly double the price of a regular 240Z), only a few hundred were made for the home market. They are quite valuable now.

1972 Fairlady 240ZG

The 240ZG is a legend, and its inspired countless aftermarket and special edition homages in the years since it went on sale. The primary differences between a 240ZG and a regular 240Z are the "G-nose"—an extended composite nosepiece with glassed in headlights for lower drag at high speeds—and the bolt-on fender flares. The coefficient of drag dropped to 0.390, and the ZG achieved a top speed of 130 mph. The ZG was never sold here, but plenty of aftermarket companies offered G-style nose conversions in the period and right up to the present day.

1977 280Z ZAP Edition

While the 240ZG and Z432 weren't sold here, the ZAP Edition 280Z was. Unlike those other two, it was really just a package of cosmetic add-ons that didn't affect drag or make any more power. Even so, the ZAP cars were a dose of period cool, with bold graphics and rear window louvers. Nissan referred to it as a Special Decor Package, and offered the ZAP Editions through dealers. There were even "race mirrors", and all ZAPs were painted a bold yellow called "Sunburst."

1980 280ZX 10th Anniversary Edition

"Very few will posses its limited number. So lavishly appointed there are virtually no options. The 280ZX is Datsun … driven to the ultimate!" That's the voiceover for one of the most delightfully campy car commercials of all time, singing the praises of the 10th Anniversary Edition.   While these "Black Gold" cars are collectible today, they also show how the Z evolved from a true sports car to something heavier, slower, and more luxurious by the dawn of the '80s. Comfortable and kitchy-cool, but no hot rod, that's for sure. 2,500 of these cars wore the distinctive black and gold paintwork, and a further 500 wore a similar two-tone job using red and black.

1984 300ZX 50th Anniversary Turbo

The Z31-generation Z car, the first 300ZX, was a radical departure from the cars that came before. In addition to the wedge-y body shape and pop-up headlights, the inline-six bowed out, replaced by a V-6 engine with an optional turbocharger. The 50th Anniversary car—celebrating 50 years, of course, of the company itself and not the Z car—was built around the 200-hp turbo V-6 model. These special editions didn't feature any radically different mechanicals, but did sport commemorative badging, unique exterior graphics, special fender flares, and unique gold-accented alloy wheels. The interior received similar custom touches.

1988 300ZX Shiro Special

Powerful, laden with eye-popping tech—the mid-1980s 300ZX was a real flagship for Nissan, but it wasn't the budget E-Type that the 240Z had debuted as, offering serious performance and style at pennies on the dollar. The Shiro Special was a limited-edition model that hinted that Nissan realized the Z had strayed from its roots. Mechanically, the Shiro Special ditched the heavy electronically-adjustable suspension in the regular car for stiff non-adjustable springs and Koni dampers. Larger anti-roll bars helped control lean in corners. The luxurious power seats were replaced by cloth Recaro sport buckets. And the digital gauge cluster was replaced by a analog gauges. Want an automatic? Too bad, you couldn't get one in the enthusiast-oriented Shiro Special. A limited-slip differential helped channel the Turbo's unchanged power output to the ground. Cosmetically, the Shiro featured a European-market front air dam and was only available in a pearlescent white paint—shiro, after all, is Japanese for "white." Overall, the Shiro lopped 125 lbs off the somewhat portly standard turbo. Relatively rare, just over 1,000 were made and are highly collectible today.

1995 300ZX SMZ

The Z32-generation 300ZX brought Nissan's sports car to another level, a tech-laden performance powerhouse featuring available twin-turbocharging and Super HICAS four-wheel steering. With performance already stratospheric for its time, Nissan didn't offer any in-house special models, but they allowed a few aftermarket outfits to create officially authorized conversions. Longtime Nissan racer and aftermarket producer Steve Millen's Stillen company sold the 300ZX SMZ through dealers—although the package wasn't cheap at $14,000 over a standard 300ZX Twin-Turbo. It featured a big wing, some front end revisions, new rocker skirts, a revised rear bumper—and—more importantly, Stillen exhaust and a few extra pounds of turbo boost upped the SMZ by a claimed 65 hp. Stiffer springs and roll bars aided handling as well. The expense of the SMZ (on top of the already extremely expensive Twin-Turbo) meant that few were built.

2005 350Z 35th Anniversary Edition

The Z car took a hiatus in the early 2000s, but the 350Z brought things back to basics. Much less tech-heavy and expensive than its predecessor, the V-6-powered 350Z still brought a stout 287 hp to the table, wrapped in retro modern styling. The 35th Anniversary Edition (this time celebrating the Z car itself rather than Nissan as a whole) was more than just a special package. There were real, tangible performance upgrades, too. Nissan teased 13 more hp out of the 3.5-liter VQ engine and Brembo brakes added stopping power. Commemorative badging was, as you'd expect, also part of the deal. Three colors were offered: Ultra Yellow, Silverstone, or Super Black.

2010 370Z 40th Anniversary Edition

In 2009, the 350Z made way for the restyled and up-engined 370Z. The next model year, a 40th Anniversary Edition dropped based on the Touring trim. No performance upgrades were offered, but some distinct cosmetic ones distinguished the 40th Anniversary cars. 40th Graphite Gray over a red interior set these cars apart, and red accents and stitching inside further made this edition unique. All 40th Anniversary cars also get the Sport package and "smoked" 19-inch wheels, as well as a shock tower brace with special badging.

2020 370Z 50th Anniversary Edition ufa.bet

Ten years after the 40th Anniversary car, the 370Z is still on sale, and so it gets a very special 50th Anniversary package. Interestingly, this limited edition model can be equipped on four different trims, including the NISMO—but doesn't bring any performance enhancements to either. Instead, it's purely a retro-themed package of cosmetic upgrades that are an homage to the BRE Racing, Pete Brock's outfit that saw success with various Nissan models, including the Datsun 2000 Roadster and the 240Z. At $2,600, the package isn't cheap, either. A host of special touches, badgers, and other call-outs complete the look.

วันพุธที่ 16 กันยายน พ.ศ. 2563

New 2021 Ferrari Portofino M Gets 612 Horsepower, 8-Speed Dual-Clutch Gearbox

 Modificata spec gives the Porto more sport-o.

"Modificata" is a familiar moniker to Ferraristi, being tacked onto the end of model names with a signifying "M" to indicate an increase in spec and performance. Go all the way back to Ferrari's sports racing cars of the 1970s, and you'll find the evolved 1970-71 512 M endurance racers which competed against the legendary Porsche 917s. In more recent times, Ferrari closed out production of the Testarossa with 501 F512 M variants between 1994-96, and it named the 2002 550 Maranello successor the 575M Maranello. Today, Ferrari announced the 2021 Portofino M, a significantly updated version of its retractable-hardtop convertible which arrives in U.S showrooms in summer 2021 at a starting cost in Italy of 206,000 euros (about $244,000, though official U.S. pricing has yet to be announced).

2021 Ferrari Portofino M Updates: Drivetrain Improvements

True to its naming convention, the new 2021 Ferrari Portofino M's 3.9-liter, turbocharged V-8 now makes 612 horsepower and 561 lb-ft of torque courtesy of new high-lift cam profiles and a faster-spinning turbo impeller; the improvement marks a 20-hp increase from previous Portofinos with no increase in torque. Ferrari says the power bump comes despite a new gas-particulate filter added to the model to curb emissions for the European market which, like a catalytic converter, saps both power and exhaust noise. To help rectify this, Ferrari simply ripped out the existing twin rear silencers, and it modified the 2021 Ferrari Portofino M's exhaust-valve shape and opening characteristics for less backpressure and more of the sound expected of a Ferrari.

A new eight-speed dual-clutch transmission, based on the design of that in the SF90 Stradale, is modified and compacted, as it has been in the new Roma, for use in the Portofino M. With more aggressive ratios in the first few gears and taller ratios further up the cog set, Ferrari says both acceleration and fuel economy is improved, while the gearbox is mounted slightly lower in the chassis for an improved center of gravity.

Maranello says the updated 2021 Ferrari Portofino M's new transmission also makes city stop-and-go driving smoother with improved clutch-torque control. Also like the Roma, the 2021 Ferrari Portofino M gets the manufacturer's new Side Slip Control (SSC) 6.0, which is essentially an electronic system to help make oversteering antics easier to manage. In this model, SSC is available only with the Manettino, Ferrari's steering wheel-mounted drive mode selector, set in Race mode, which itself is a new feature for the model. Manettino modes now include Wet, Comfort, Sport, Race, and ESC-Off.

2021 Ferrari Portofino M Updates: Styling Upgrades

Styling updates are very subtle, with the Portofino M's front end being given aluminum-finish horizontal slats in the grille and functionally reshaped vents to either side. The ends of the front bumper also have cut-outs which blend into the styling of the car's existing front fender vents. At the rear, the bumper is restyled slightly, while the underbody diffuser is also new and now available optionally in carbon fiber. Fresh five-spoke, diamond-finish wheels round out the changes, with the interior looking largely untouched, save for a "Portofino M" badge at the end of the dashboard.

2021 Ferrari Portofino M Updates: Performance

If you hope these changes have a big effect on the updated Portofino's 0-60-mph time, you'll be disappointed. Michael Leiters, Ferrari's chief technology officer, says the Portofino M's sprint to 62 mph is limited by rear-end grip and remains at 3.4 seconds like the standard Portofino. Still, there's improvement to be found further up the speed range, with a 9.8-second 0-124-mph run, which Ferrari says knocks a full second off of the outgoing car's time. Top speed is unchanged at 199 mph.

The revisions mean the Portofino M even makes the same horsepower as the new 612-hp Roma coupe, but Ferrari still considers the rakish Roma coupe and voluptuous Portofino M convertible as very different cars, designed to coexist alongside each other. "Different Ferraris for different Ferraristi," as Enrico Galliera, Ferrari's marketing boss, puts it. We'll have one of each, please.

2021 Ferrari Portofino M Highlights

"M" stands for Modificata, "modified" in Italian, as on heritage models

Turbocharged, 3.9-liter V-8 gets a 20-horsepower bump to 612 hp, making it as powerful as the new Ferrari Roma

Seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox is replaced with a new eight-speed version, as fitted to the Roma

Side Slip Control 6.0 added along with Race mode on the Manettino

Subtle exterior revisions to front and rear, new wheels

Replaces standard Portofino, with deliveries starting in summer 2021 at an estimated base price of $244,000 ufa.bet

Lincoln and SBE Partnership Brings Fleet of Navigator and Aviator SUVs to Luxury Hotels

 A little more than two years ago, Lincoln and SBE announced a partnership that made the American automotive luxury brand the "official luxury vehicle" of a number of the hospitality group's hotels. At the time, guests at eight different SBE properties were given the opportunity to get carted about in top-of-the-line Lincoln Navigator Black Label SUVs and Continental Black Label sedans.

Now, Lincoln and SBE are at it again. The two brands announced a continued commitment to the partnership, which allows those staying at the likes of the Hudson Hotel in New York City, the Delano in Miami's South Beach, and the Mondrian in Los Angeles to enjoy the comfortable quarters of Lincoln's Navigator or Aviator SUVs. 

That's right, posh hotel goers, Lincoln no longer plans to use Continentals at SBE properties; the brand will instead rely on its mid-size Aviator SUV to fill the role previously occupied by the luxury sedan. No surprise, really, given Lincoln recently announced the demise of the Continental. After all, why cart potential customers about in a car that's gone to the big scrapyard in the sky? The addition of the Aviator to the SBE fleet complements the additional news that the two brands' partnership now extends to a ninth SBE property: the SLS Cancun.

Admittedly, the current environment makes it a rather tough time for traveling. That said, if you're looking to stay at a luxury hotel in North America and want the added bonus of spending time in a Lincoln Navigator or Aviator, then these are the SBE properties you'll want to look into:

SLS Beverly Hills

SLS Brickell

SLS South Beach

Delano South Beach

Mondrian Los Angeles

Hudson Hotel

SLS LUX Brickell

Hyde Hotel and Residences Midtown Miami

SLS Cancun แทงบอลออนไลน์

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วันจันทร์ที่ 14 กันยายน พ.ศ. 2563

Shelby's New GT500CR Is an 810 HP Monster With a Carbon Fiber Body

Have $298,000 burning a hole in your pocket and a hankering for a classic-looking Shelby GT500 with a modern twist? Meet the GT500CR Carbon Edition, a limited run of just 25 carbon-fiber-bodied specials that just so happen to go on a shocking diet.

Shelby claims this special model tips the scales 600 pounds lighter than the regular GT500CR. There's also a supercharged "Coyote" 5.0-liter V-8 in the mix, pumping out a claimed 810 hp with a laundry list of mods. Traction is handled by a nine-inch rear end with a limited-slip differential and coilovers to help with handling. Wilwood brakes provide stopping power, and a Tremec-supplied six-speed manual is the only transmission option.

But it's the body that has our full attention. Peek at the gallery below to see the unfinished bare body in all its woven glory. The finished cars will wear a veneer of clear coat, although owners can customize a stripe color and Shelby American will happily apply special badging.

SpeedKore produced the body, and Classic Recreations is the company responsible for actually building these vehicles. Shelby American isn't producing these beasts, but the outfit's Las Vegas facility will receive the carbon-fiber-bodied monsters and distribute the lot to customers. It apparently takes 12 to 18 months to build one, so get your order in now and try to be patient while these companies work together to put an outrageously-finished, massively powerful GT500 together for you. แทงบอลออนไลน์

2022 Hyundai Tucson Revealed: Yes, This Is Really What It'll Look Like


This may be your first look at the 2022 Hyundai Tucson, or it might be your second or third. We say take as many looks as you need, or if you have only one look to give, make it last as long as possible with Hyundai's all-new compact crossover. The extroverted new SUV practically whips double takes out of casual observers.

What's New? Nearly Everything

The current Tucson has been on sale since 2015, having been last fully redesigned for the 2016 model year. It's a competent if unassuming entry in the competitive compact crossover segment. The 2022 Hyundai Tucson, on the other hand, is almost entirely new, with fresh styling, new hybrid powertrain options, and a massively overhauled interior.

Hyundai will build two versions of the Tucson, one with a short wheelbase and one with a longer one—only the latter will be sold in the U.S. (This strategy is similar to the current VW Tiguan, which is sold in America in the longer of its two global forms to offer more interior room.) As before, front- and all-wheel drive will be available.

Now, Take A Real Long Look

You are not looking at a concept car, or a design apparition—this is the 2022 Hyundai Tucson you'll be able to buy next year. Wild, isn't it? Compressed within the fairly conventional tall-hatchback shape of a modern compact crossover SUV is a lot of styling. Typically that spells trouble, as piling design on design can often be too much. On the Tucson, though, the riot of creases, chamfers, and chunky surfacing kind of works. We wouldn't call the result beautiful, and some of the flourishes or perhaps too florid on their own, but the Tucson is eye-catching without being ugly.

Hyundai is working with a new styling language here, one we haven't seen on any other production model save the limited-production, high-tech Nexo fuel-cell electric vehicle. The SUV's face is striking and dominated by a spread-wings grille-and-headlight combination. Deep cheekbone vents with fog lights nestled into them are likely nonfunctional but give the Tucson a more purposeful aesthetic than most small SUVs. Ditto the Hyundai's athletic stance, where the wheels seem to sit wide of the body beneath bulging fenders and the tail seems kicked up in the air. Jaunty!

Most observers' eyes will quickly flit to the taillights, however, which in shape and execution bring to mind the Ford Mustang's vertical-bar arrangement. The lights are more original than they first seem, however. There are only two bars per side (the Mustang wears three), and they're connected by a full-width reflective unibrow. Each taillight bar also is more triangular and three-dimensional in shape than the Ford pony car's units. Other novel styling touches include the faux vents stamped into the trailing edge of each fender flare, the Hyundai badge hovering in the tailgate glass, and the silver trim (with its own simulated vent stamping at its trailing edge) running up and over the side glass all the way to the Tucson's tail. Final dimensions have yet to be revealed, but it would appear as though the new Tucson is larger than the old one; this theory is backed up by the cargo volume figure Hyundai provided. At 38.7 cubic feet, the 2022 Tucson's cargo area is notably larger than the 2021 model's 31-cubic-foot hold; both figures are measured with the rear seats upright. With them folded, the new Tucson's figure surely jumps beyond the current model's 62-cubic-foot capacity.

The Interior Kicks Hard

Forget the current Tucson's interior styling if you haven't already. The new model's cabin turns its sights upscale, with a handsome dual-cockpit setup split by a waterfall central stack and an elegant "floating" center console. A trim element lining the top of each front door flows into the dash, with well-integrated air vents embedded at each front corner; that trim line continues all the way in front of the driver and front-seat passenger and frames the central stack. A set of pushbutton transmission controls helps streamline the already sleek-looking center console by eradicating a traditional shift lever; just ahead of the console is a horizontally arranged set of physical buttons for the seat heaters and ventilation, steering wheel heater, and parking cameras and sensors. The control treatments scream "luxury car!" even though the Tucson is priced and sold as a mainstream compact SUV.

A new 8.0-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto phone integration is standard, but the optional setup wows: It's a 10.3-inch touchscreen pictured that fits flush with the surrounding panel. Below it sits a strip of touch-sensitive, backlit controls for volume and tuning, as well as shortcuts to the navigation, radio, media, and setup menus. While logically arrayed, the controls raise two potential shortcomings: First, being touch-sensitive and shapeless, the buttons likely will require a glance to operate (you can't easily "feel" for a flush-fit, touch-sensitive button as you can a physical button or a knob). Also, speaking of knobs, there aren't any on the 10.3-inch screen—only tap inputs for volume and tuning, which could prove fiddly, as it does in certain products from other automakers.

At least with the optional 10.3-inch display, the Tucson also includes touch-sensitive climate controls below the main touchscreen. These flank a conventional digital display for the air temperature and fan speed. Again, the button layout appears intuitive, but these touch-sensitive controls carry the same potential drawbacks as those for the audio system. More information on the base setup, which we presume won't be touch-sensitive, is expected later this year, when U.S.-specific 2022 Tucson information will be released.

One Gas Engine, Two Hybrid Options

Big changes are in store beneath the Tucson's straked hood. Last year's engine lineup—a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine and a turbocharged 1.6-liter engine—is replaced by an all-new 2.5-liter four-cylinder and a pair of hybrid options based around a turbocharged 1.6-liter gas engine and an electric motor. The 2.5-liter four is standard, and puts down a class-competitive 190 horsepower and 182 lb-ft of torque (both figures are preliminary estimates). It comes paired with an eight-speed automatic that's also new to the Tucson, and will also be offered with front- and all-wheel drive choices.

The two hybrids include a regular gas-electric setup and a plug-in hybrid with a large battery pack for extended electric-only driving capability, much like Ford's Escape Hybrid and Escape Plug-In Hybrid models. Regardless of which hybrid you choose, it will have a turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine (180 horsepower, 195 lb-ft of torque) assisted by an electric motor of unspecified output and using a six-speed automatic. Hyundai does quote a total output for the system, a substantial 230 horsepower and 258 lb-ft—on par with some turbocharged, nonhybrid competitors and reminiscent of Toyota's strategy with its similarly sized RAV4 hybrid and plug-in hybrid, which are more powerful than their gas siblings and promise both better fuel economy and improved performance.

More zest may be on the horizon, too: Hyundai isn't offering specifics yet, but it has announced a sporty N Line trim will be part of the 2022 Tucson's lineup. The Elantra and Sonata N Line models provide a general blueprint, but beyond that, further details (including U.S.-specific information) surrounding the new Tucson and its N Line variant are due closer to the end of the year. ufa.bet

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The Manhart MH4 GTR Outguns Mightier M Cars, Sniffs Around Hellcat Territory

ข่าวสดวันนี้  The outgoing M4 was plenty powerful, but this takes it to a whole new level. BMW recently took the wraps off of the new BMW M4...