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There are more than a few good reasons to live in Southern California. Watching winter on television, awesome Mexican food, and outstanding driving roads all come to mind. Once we figure out that drought and traffic stuff, we’ll be set. In this latest video from Drive, Mike Spinelli and Alex Roy stretch the legs of the new 2016 Mercedes-AMG GT S on the Pacific Coast Highway through Malibu and nearby canyon roads in the Santa Monica mountains.

Of all the cars on sale today, there aren’t many better suited for the area than the Mercedes-AMG GT S, though with a starting price of just $130,000, well-heeled Malibu residents might take you for a charity case. Even so, its drop-dead gorgeous shape fits right in with the scenery and its agile chassis devours twisty roads. The 503-horsepower, twin-turbo, 4.0-liter V-8 creates a wonderful cacophony that probably sounds pretty good bouncing off canyon walls.

If you’ve never been there, it really is an amazing area to explore. The PCH offers incredible ocean views and the real estate in Malibu is absolutely gobsmacking. While you’re there, check out Malibu Seafood (Pro tip: It’s BYOB. Do we need to tell you not to drink and drive?) and The Getty Villa for some culture. Traffic can get pretty bad on weekends, but the scenery is spectacular to the point that it’s impossible to get frustrated. Besides, you can always peel off to one of the excellent canyon roads, like Deer Creek, Latiga Canyon or Topanga Canyon, and head over to Mulholland Highway. Stop at the Rock Store while you’re there for possible Jay Leno sightings.

On a personal level, these are some of my favorite roads in the country, right up there with the Lewis and Clark Highway in the Columbia River Gorge and Route 129 ‘The Tail of the Dragon’ straddling the North Carolina-Tennessee border. Visit all three if you can.

Now in its third generation, the smallest model in the Mercedes-Benz range has just received its mid-cycle refresh. The timing may seem odd for some people, as the latest A-Class was only unveiled back in 2012, but recent reports have made it clear that Mercedes-Benz is pushing for a slightly shorter shelf life for its models, down from the regular seven years to only six. The 2016 A-Class comes to confirm that Stuttgart is already making use of this strategy.

Even though this is the third-ever A-Class, it actually represents the first time that Mercedes-Benz has ventured into the Audi A3 and BMW 1 Series segment, unless you also count the ill-fated C-Class SportCoupe or the 2013 Mercedes-Benz CLC and the subsequent CLC. Based on a platform called MFA (Modular Front-Wheel-Drive Architecture), the latest A-Class shares most of its underpinnings with the entire compact lineup from Mercedes-Benz, namely the B-Class, GLA-Class, CLA-Class and CLA Shooting Brake.

Essentially sporting a front-wheel-drive architecture, some of its versions also offer a 4MATIC-badged AWD system, something which it desperately needs in its higher-powered variants like the awesome A45 AMG. As expected, the mid-cycle refresh did not change much in terms of exterior or interior design, while most of last year’s engines are carried over with slight improvements.

Updated 06/29/2015: Mercedes dropped the official details on the new generation Mercedes A-Class.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2016 Mercedes-Benz A-Class.

Lambo has just announced that a roadster version of its 2015 Lamborghini Aventador LP 750-4 Superveloce is now officially available. Only 500 roadsters will be built.

The news comes straight from Lamborghini President and CEO Stephan Winkelmann, who spoke during the Aventador Superveloce coupe’s U.K. debut at the Goodwood Festival of Speed this past weekend. As the high-powered two-door made its run “up the hill,” Winkelmann said that all 600 coupes were already accounted for, and that first deliveries were starting now. More excitingly, he went on to add that the Italian make would also offer a roofless version, and that dealers worldwide are currently taking orders. 

Anyone looking to pick one up is encouraged to make their intentions known sooner rather than later, considering the hardtop sold out in just three months. Pricing is not yet confirmed, but expect to pay a good deal over the coupe’s $400,000 plus MSRP. 

Continue reading for the full story.

Imagine the frustration. After dropping about $1.4 million on it, you’ve just taken delivery of your new 2014 Ferarri LaFerrari. You lay awake at night anticipating the moment when you roll up to the 2015 Ferrari Cavalcade in your 963-horsepower hypercar and finally get to show up that scoundrel Marco and his silly 2014 Ferrari 458 Speciale. But on meeting day you arrive to find out that everyone else you know has also bought a LaFerrari, including Marco and even that weird guy who works at the dog groomer’s.

As much as I like to think that’s the scenario that played out in the video, it’s probably not entirely accurate. YouTube exotic car impresario, Marchettino, went to the 2015 Ferrari Cavalcade in Rome where, for a few days in June, LaFerraris were as common as wine bars. A total of 15 were registered for this year’s Cavalcade and 12 were on hand the day Marchettino attended.

The Cavalcade is an official gran turismo event organized by Ferrari and this year took participants through the medieval cities that surround Rome, the hill climb at Mount Terminillo and the Vellelunga circuit. In addition to the LaFerrari, just about every other newish Ferrari was there as well, including several 458 Italias and Speciales, F12 Berlinettas, F430s, 2011 Ferrari 599 GTOs, Californias and FFs. Not a bad way to spend five days.

To refresh, the LaFerrari is the latest in a line of Ferrari halo cars that includes the 1985 Ferrari 288 GTO, 1987-1992 F40, 1995-1997 Ferrari F50 and 2003-2004 Ferrari Enzo. As the first Ferrari gas-electric hybrid, it pairs a 6.3-liter V-12 with an electric motor to produce 963 horsepower and 663 pound-feet of torque. It does 0-60 in less than three seconds and will go on to a top speed of 217 mph. Only Ferrari’s weekend cars driven by Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen are faster.

Here’s the thing: you can buy speed. Anyone with an extra six-figures burning a hole in his pocket can pick up a supercar, drive it to the track, and smoke pretty much everyone in attendance. Talent, on the other hand, is much harder to come by. Talent takes dedication, work, and no small degree of passion. Money can’t buy talent – but it sure doesn’t hurt.

Enter Lamborghini’s Accademia Programs. For about 3,750 euros ($4,204), anyone with a penchant for adrenaline can climb behind the wheel of a 2015 Lamborghini Aventador LP 750-4 Superveloce to get hands-on experience and instruction on what it takes to use a supercar to its fullest potential. The program includes car control exercises, track section training, individual coaching, telemetry and video analysis, and full-circuit lapping. No previous experience is required.

Lambo hosts Track Accademia events at famous race tracks all over the world, including Imola, Hockenheim, and Laguna Seca. Participants can sign up for the entry-level single-day “Intensivo” program or the more extensive “Avanzato” two-day program.

Check out the above-featured video to see what’s in store. If it were my money, I’d look into the Skip Barber Three Day Racing school, which doesn’t come with seat time in a Lambo, but does offer more time on track at a cheaper price (depending on your venue of choice).

McLaren wants to bring performance hybrids to the masses, as long as the masses can afford to spend over $300,000 on a supercar. Speaking at a recent shareholders meeting, McLaren CEO Mike Flewitt said he wants to see 50 percent of McLaren models incorporate hybrid power with in the next 10 years. Of the three tiers that make up McLaren’s lineup, only the Ultimate Series cars, which include the $1 million-plus 2014 McLaren P1 and 2016 McLaren P1 GTR, use hybrid drivetrains. The new plan would likely see this technology extended to the Super Series 650S replacement, which is due in 2017.

“I have said in 10 years I expect half of our cars to be hybrids, but I actually think it will be faster. And I think it could be more than half,” Flewitt told Auto Express. “Will we put that on all vehicles? If I could get the cost and weight right I absolutely would. Our strategy is to use technology to produce the best driving cars.”

Currently in development and internally designated P16, the next Super Series cars will be entirely new from the ground up and will replace the 2015 McLaren 650S, 2015 McLaren 650S Spider and 2016 McLaren 675LT, all cars originally spawned from the 2011-2013 McLaren MP4-12C first introduced in 2011. Look for the 3.8-liter, twin-turbo V-8 to be replaced with a new, downsized, twin-turbo V-6 coupled with a new hybrid system that will produce more than enough power to compensate for the smaller-displacement engine. Like the 650S, expect the P16 to be priced between $250,000 and $300,000, with drop-top Spider and lighter, more-powerful variants to be spun off as well.

Continue reading for the full story.

Source: AutoExpress

It’s been two years since Sebastien Loeb smashed the Pikes Peak record with an amazing run of 8:13.878 minutes, and it seems no other manufacturer/driver is able to get close to that time, let alone beat it. However, this year’s "Race to the Clouds" had plenty of drama, mostly in the electric car department. Specifically, veteran Rhys Millen set a new record time for battery-powered vehicles, taking his Latvian-built Drive eO PP03 up the mountain in 9:07.222 minutes. What’s more, Millen became the first to win the race with an electric racer.

The New Zealander beat last year’s 9:08-minute record for EVs, which was set by Grec Tracy in the 2014 Mitsubishi MiEV Evolution III. Although Mitsu didn’t return for this year’s event, Millen had some competition in "Monster" Tajima’s Rimac e-Runner Concept_One prototype. Nobuhiro finished the race in second, but no fewer than 25 seconds behind the winner.

The podium was completed by a gasoline-powered car, Paul Dallenbach’s PVA, which won the Open Wheel category with a 9:36.496-minute run. Jeff Zwart’s Porsche 911 came in in fourth (9:46.243), while Clint Vahsholtz’s Ford finished fifth (9:55.479).

Keep it locked here for a detailed race recap of the 2015 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb.

Continue reading for the full story.

Source: tflcar

Even though the 2015 Goodwood Festival of Speed was packed with plenty of modern supercars and classic racers, there’s at least one hatchback visitors were anxious to see. I’m talking about the 2016 Ford Focus RS, the 345-horsepower hot-hatch that outguns everything in its class but the wild 2015 Mercedes-Benz A45 AMG and 2015 Audi RS3. With that much power under its belt, an AWD system that can send up to 70 percent of the engine’s torque to the rear axle, and an aggressive body kit, the Focus RS was one of the most anticipated appearances at this year’s Festival of Speed.

And Ford left no one disappointed, sending the hot-hatch up the famous hill with Ken Block behind the steering wheel. Sure, there’s wasn’t much drifting except for a quick slide in the first turn, but the sound of the 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine at full throttle was spellbinding to say the least.

If one minute of action up Goodwood’s hill isn’t enough though, you’ll have to wait a few more months until the Focus RS arrives at a dealership near you, as the hatch isn’t scheduled to reach its first owners until early 2016.

As a brief reminder, Ford’s 345-horsepower and 324-pound-feet five-door uses the Mustang’s 2.3-liter turbo-four and a new AWD system with dynamic torque vectoring, launch control, and selectable drive modes. It also comes with a Drift Mode, which those of you looking to play Ken Block (on an enclosed track, of course) should find very entertaining.

Volvo first introduced the S90 name in 1996, when it renamed the 960 for certain markets. With Volvo discontinuing the 900 Series midsize in 1998, the 2014 Volvo S80 we know of today rolled in as the replacement for the S90. The S90 also marked the end of an era for Volvo, being the last rear-wheel-drive car wearing the Swedish company’s badge. The S80 continued the S90’s luxurious legacy over the course of two generations. The first series lived between 1998 and 2006, while the second-gen model is in its eighth year on the market as of 2014. In 2015, which also marks a new design era for Volvo, rumors are swirling about the return of the S90 nameplate as the company’s range-topping model.

Besides taking duties from the S80, the S90 is also set to revolutionize the midsize luxury segment, much like the second-generation XC90 did in the SUV market. Expect the sedan to receive the hauler’s design language, along with an interior packed with the latest technology and luxury items developed by the Swedes. The overhauled sedan will hit dealerships in the second half of 2016.

Updated 06/29/2019: While all we have so far on the upcoming S90 is pure speculation, we decided to create a rendering to give you an idea of what the car will look like. More details below.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2016 Volvo S90.

Source: AutoExpress

We brought you news earlier this month about a lighter, more powerful Ferrari F12, and now we have what appear to be two newly leaked photos from a yet-to-be-released online configurator for prospective customers. Speculatively called F12 ‘GTO,’ the revised super GT will have over 780 horsepower, and, at 3,120 pounds will weigh an entire 220 pounds less than the standard 2013 Ferrari F12 Berlinetta.

If you were expecting an angrier F12B styling-wise, then these images, courtesy of Autogespot won’t disappoint. It shares the same hard points as the car on which it’s based, but the ‘GTO’ is a riot of air intakes, fins and winglets, and there are even a few nods to iconic Ferraris of the past, specifically the Series I 1962-1964 Ferrari 250 GTO.

Continue reading for the full story.

Source: Autogespot

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