Car News



Porsche Left a Funny Message for Acura in the Porsche 911 GT3

What do you do when rival companies use your sports cars as benchmark? If you have a few giggles

It’s no longer a secret that many automakers anonymously buy cars from other companies to benchmark while they are developing a new vehicle. We’ve seen many big brands to that, including Cadillac, BMW, and Lexus, and there’s a big chance others are doing it without drawing attention to themselves. Honda, on the other hand, was caught red-handed by Porsche for buying a 911 GT3 to benchmark against the new NSX hybrid sports car.

Although Honda most likely purchased the car like a regular customer, the German company found out about it after the GT3 was recalled to fix an issue with the engine connecting rods. How is that possible? Well, high-profile sports cars are basically equipped with "black boxes" that provide the manufacturer with all sorts of data as to how the vehicle is being used. The folks over at Porsche likely spent some valuable time to put the pieces together, but as soon they were sure it was Honda’s car, they decided to pull a prank on the Japanese maker.

According to the NSX’s dynamics project leader Nick Robinson, the 911 GT3 returned with a note that said "Good luck Honda Honda from Porsche. See you on the other side" under the engine cover. Someone at Honda had a good laugh — and probably spilled some coffee in the engine bay — over this...

Interestingly enough, Honda was also busted by McLaren for using a 12C to benchmark the NSX. But, instead of leaving a note, the Brits wanted to know "where did you go 205 mph? What track?" according to Robinson.

Keep reading for the full story.

Nissan Titan XD Single Cab

Nissan’s first single-cab Titan aims for the workin’ man

The second-generation Nissan Titan and its heavy-duty counterpart, the Titan XD are the newest members of the full-size pickup segment. The “heavier-duty” Titan XD arrived in dealers for the 2016 model year, while the half-ton Titan will hit showrooms for 2017. Missing until now was a single cab version. Now as both the Titan and Titan XD roll out for 2017, both trucks can be had in a regular cab, long bed configuration.

Nissan’s obvious target is the fleet and commercial segment where regular cab, work trucks offer all the capability of their extended and crew cab counterparts, but with less buy-in cost. Sure, there’s only room for three, but until the late 1990s, that was normal for most pickups.

"Once we complete the roll-out of all Titan cab, bed, powertrain, and grade level configurations, our all-new Titan family will cover about 85 percent of the total light pickup marketplace," said Rich Miller, the chief product specials for Titan and Titan XD. "More importantly, “ he continues, “the Titan XD and Titan single cabs will have the power, torque, heavy duty chassis, and durability demanded by today’s demanding worksites – including the highest towing capacities and payloads in the lineup."

Did you catch that? The regular cab versions of the Titan trucks will have the highest payload and towing specs of the trucks’ lineups.

The addition of a regular cab also means Titan XD customers can choose from the three traditional cab sizes with three bed lengths. Like all trucks in the industry, the available wheelbase lengths limit the number of cab and bed configuration. You can’t get a regular cab, short bed Titan XD even if you wanted it. Nissan could potentially make that combination available on the half-ton Titan in the future.

Both the Titan and Titan XD regular cabs will be available the S and SV trims, giving fleet managers a choice between the base and mid-grade levels. In the Titan XD, two engine options and two drivetrain options are given. This includes the heavily revised 5.6-liter Endurance V-8 and the new 5.0-liter Cummins V-8 turbodiesel, along with the choice of 2WD or 4WD with either engine.

So let’s dive into the Titan XD regular cab for all the details.

Aston Martin Ends Production Of The DB9

The iconic grand tourer was discontinued to make room for the new DB11.

Aston Martin is currently in the middle of a massive lineup refresh that already brought us the 2011 Aston Martin DB11 and will soon introduce successors for both the Vantage and the Vanquish, as well as the company’s first crossover vehicle. Unfortunately, for gearheads like us, every reorganization process also means that iconic models must be discontinued to make way for brand-new products. With the DB11 on its way to dealerships, Aston Martin is bidding farewell to the DB9.

Although this is a sign of progress and brings a faster and more technologically advanced vehicle to the streets, the discontinuation of the DB9 is also a sad event, putting an end to one of the most important Aston Martins ever built.

Introduced in 2003 as a replacement for the DB7, which was developed under Ford ownership and based on a Jaguar platform that was nearly two decades old, the DB9 was the company’s first all-new vehicle in years. While the drivetrain wasn’t exactly new, the previous dated platform was replaced with the aluminum Vertical Horizontal architecture, while the exterior was thoroughly redesigned by Ian Callum and Henrik Fisker. The DB9 was gorgeous to look at and its styling became the norm for future products.

What’s more, due to the fact that Ford sold Aston Martin in 2006 and the Brits had to make without proper financing, the DB9 became the base for every model that followed, including the DBS, Vanquish, Vantage, and the four-door Rapide (many of which are still in production as of 2016).

After 13 years in production, the DB9 was sent off to the history books on July 22, when the "Last of 9" Edition, obviously limited to nine examples, rolled off the assembly line.

Continue reading for the full story.

Lamborghini Huracan with After Sales Packages

Three new packages give the Huracan a new look and won’t void the factory warranty

As the saying goes, all good things must come to an end, and even the coolest cars out there end up getting replaced. That’s exactly what happened to the Lamborghini Gallardo when Lambo decided to replace the icon with an all-new model called the Huracan. Initially debuting at the 2014 Geneva Auto Show, the supercar came with a 5.2-liter V-10 that was good for 610 horsepower and 413 pound-feet of torque, LED illumination, 12.3-inch fully digital instrument cluster, generous portions of Alcantara and Nappa leather, and lots of other features that were clear improvements over anything the Gallardo could offer.

The 610-4 Coupe eventually spawned the 610-4 Polizia and the 610-4 Avio, and there was even a 620-2 Super Trofeo. By 2016, the Hurcan had an official LP 610-4 Spyder edition, and there was also an LP 580-2, which served as more of an entry-level model with rear-wheel drive. With the life cycle of the Huracan well underway, Lamborghini has finally announced three new after-sales packages that will assist current owners in giving their Huracan a new and sportier look.

These three packages are primarily focused on exterior enhancements, but there is a new center-lock kit that hasn’t been offered on the Huracan until now. With that said, let’s take a good look at what these new packages do for the Huracan.

Acura NSX GT3 Program on Schedule; Surprise Public Testing Session this Week

2017 North American campaign target is "on schedule"

When Acura showed up at the New York Auto Show with the 2017 NSX GT3 in its booth, all of us here at TopSpeed went a little crazy. We’ve known that the plan was to homologate the car as an FIA GT3 racer this fall, and so far, it looks like everything is on schedule. In a press call today, Acura announced a number of things, including a surprise public testing session during the Pirelli World Challenge practice session at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio.

The car will be driven by Peter Kox, who has been named as the official NSX GT3 development driver and has driven various GT3 vehicles in Europe in the past. The NSX GT3 will take its turn on the 2.25-mile, 14-turn course on Thursday, July 28 and on Friday, July 29. According to Art St. Cyr – the President of Honda Performance Development, the car is “pretty much a stunner” and steady progress has been made thus far.

“Based on a very successful test program, we’re taking the next logical step in seeing how we stack-up against the competition,” Said St. Cyr. “Mid-Ohio seemed like the perfect opportunity, given the demands it places on a racecar and its proximity to NSX R&D and manufacturing.”

During the press call, it was stressed that this car isn’t in finalized form, which means there could be any number of changes before we see the finalized version, including changes to the cockpit. The car you see here in these pictures is the primary development car, so don’t expect to see Kox get too wild behind the wheel. As Art St. Cyr put it, they aren’t racing the car so they are “limiting the risk that it will get smashed up.”

Bernie Ecclestone’s Mother-In-Law Held For $36.5 Million Ransom

Formula One chief currently negotiating for her release
Posted on by jayk  

Bernie Ecclestone’s mother-in-law, 67-year-old Aparecida Schunck, was reportedly kidnapped in Sao Paulo, Brazil last Friday and is currently being held for ransom. According to the Brazilian magazine Veja, Ms. Schunck was abducted from outside her home in the Sao Paulo neighborhood of Interlagos. The report goes on to say that the kidnappers are demanding 120 million Brazilian Reals (approximately $36.5 million) for her return, to be paid in pound sterling divided into four separate bags. If confirmed, it’ll be the highest kidnapping ransom in Brazilian history.

Ecclestone, the 85-year-old chief executive of the Formula One Group, is believed to be one of the wealthiest men in sports, with a net worth of billions of dollars. Ms. Schunck is the mother of Ecclestone’s third wife, 38-year-old Fabiana Flosi.

This isn’t the first time Ecclestone has faced a kidnapping. Four years ago, British citizen Martin Peckham was sentenced to five years in jail for blackmail after demanding 200,000 pounds from Ecclestone, claiming that he could foil a plot to kidnap Ecclestone’s daughter, Tamara.

Continue reading for the full story.

Source: Veja

No Jaguar Supercar For You

British automaker will instead focus on an all-electric luxury sedan and SUV

Rumors of Jaguar planning to build a production version of the C-X75 supercar were exciting to talk about while they lasted, but now it appears that’s all they’ll ever be. According to Automobile Magazine, Jaguar has officially closed the door on building a C-X75-inspired supercar and bringing back the XK line as a stand-alone tourer. Neither of the two models will make it to production, largely because the British automaker is instead setting its sights on a pair of electric vehicles, specifically a replacement unit for the XJ and a premium SUV.

Given the current climate of the auto industry and the growing importance being placed on electric vehicles, it seems that Jaguar is looking to capitalize on that fact by leveraging two of its models to fit in that specific market. The all-electric XJ, codenamed the X590, will be developed to complement the existing model and will make use of a new electronic architecture with a software in place for autonomous driving capabilities. Physically, the X590 is being described as a four-door coupe with its own rear hatch in what Automobile Magazine is saying as something of a compromise between Jaguar’s design boss Ian Callum and Jaguar Land Rover CEO Ralf Speth.

Jaguar’s new plan also calls for another model, an all-electric SUV, to be built before 2019. This particular model will likely be configured in one of two ways: a rear-wheel drive model with just one motor or an all-wheel drive version with two motors. It was also initially thought of to be a Range Rover, but it will instead take on the mantle as another Jaguar EV to further bolster the automaker’s all-electric lineup.

With these models now being the focus of Jaguar, the rumored C-X75 supercar and the returning XK model have both been relegated to the sidelines. It’s not uncommon for a company like Jaguar to make these kinds of decisions. Apparently, the X590 is being pegged to be the company’s answer to the Tesla Model S and expectations are that once it hits dealerships, it’s going to sell 20,000 to 30,000 units a year for the British automaker.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

Porsche Bisimoto 911BR "One-of-a-Kind"

An air-cooled tribute to the King of Cool
Posted on by jayk  

In the 1971 film Le Mans, Steve McQueen delivers one of his all-time most memorable quotes: “When you’re racing, it’s life. Anything that happens before or after is just waiting.” That attitude wasn’t just a figment of McQueen’s onscreen character – the man really did live to go fast. When he wasn’t acting, McQueen participated in a variety of professional racing series, and when he was acting, he regularly performed his own stunts behind the wheel. The Porsche you see here is a rolling tribute to the McQueen mythos, a customized one-off creation packed to the brim with performance-enhancing modifications and polished subtlety. If style were a liquid, this thing would be an ocean, and next month, it’s going to the highest bidder.

Slated to hit the block at the 2016 Mecum Collector Car Auction in Monterey, California, the Mecum website describes the 911BR as “a no expense spared bespoke Porsche” that “reflects [McQueen’s] personality and penchant for straight line performance, cornering prowess and understated appearance.”

Proceeds will go to benefit Boys Republic (hence the “BR”), a non-profit organization in Chino, California that serves troubled adolescents. Since 1907, Boys Republic has helped more than 30,000 at-risk teenagers, including McQueen himself, who credited Boys Republic with refocusing his life towards success.

So what makes the 911BR worthy of association with the King of Cool? Read on to find out.

Continue reading to learn more about the 1980 Porsche Bisimoto 911BR.

Should Mercedes Build A 1,300-Horsepower Hypercar?

Rumored hypercar could redefine the performance market

So there’s this flaming hot rumor going around that Mercedes is planning to build a 1,300-horsepower hypercar that will make its debut in 2017 as the crown jewel of AMG’s 50th anniversary celebrations. German magazine Autobild first reported on this rumor, saying that the unnamed machine of apocalyptic proportions will feature a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that will be tuned to deliver an astounding 1,000 horsepower to go along with a pair of electric motors, each coming with 150 horsepower. It’s a wild car by any stretch of the imagination, but it’s still a rumor and when it comes to rumors involving hypercars of this power, it’s probably best to have the salt shakers handy at this point.

Still, these are also the types of rumors that are hard too ignore. At one point in time, nobody would have thought that Aston Martin and Red Bull would collaborate on its own hypercar, and yet here are, waiting with baited breath to see what the now confirmed AM-RB 001 hypercar is going to be all about. The Autobild report about the Mercedes hypercar adds that the model will be named the AMG R50 as a possible nod to AMG’s 50th birthday. It’s also rumored to feature a carbon fiber monocoque and four-wheel steering just like the one found on the recently unveiled AMG GT R. A target weight of 2,886 pounds was also thrown around, as is the use of prototype race cars as the design inspiration of the hypercar. The car’s estimated price, according to Autobild, is around $2 to $3 million.

Make no mistake, the rumored details about the “AMG R 50” are staggering, even if the validity of it all is still up in the air. So instead of trying to decode this potentially segment-altering development, I’m going to try to instead make a case for why Mercedes should or shouldn’t build a 1,300-horsepower hypercar. The popular sentiment may be on the side of doing it, but there’s also an alternative discussion to be made on why it may not be that much of a good idea to get into this market, at least not yet.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

Source: Autobild

Let’s talk a bit about mobility for a minute. Most of us have it pretty good; we can stand up, and walk around with little to no problem. We can kick our feet through the mud without fear and navigate over tough terrain with much of a headache. But, not everyone is that fortunate. Those who are confined to using a wheelchair to get around – for whatever reason – have limits that the rest of us don’t have. Trying to push yourself (or drive an electric wheelchair) through things like mud, or even thick grass just doesn’t work. Well, that’s about to change. I’d like to introduce you to the Ripchair 3.0.

What started out as a prototype that was built for the Howe and Howe Technologies Show on the Discovery channel has now turned into this insane looking person hauler you see before you. Thanks to an increasing interest after the public laid eyes on that prototype, manufacturer Track Chair Extreme had no choice but to build a production model. As you can see from the images, this baby is built like a tank but is nice and user-friendly at the same time.

It is large enough that it can support most standard and electric wheelchairs, thanks to a newly designed ramp in the front. There is also a built-in seat option that extends outward for easy access. The Ripchair itself is built from aerospace grade aluminum, which means it is strong and lightweight. It has a 29 horsepower, four-stroke engine that is powerful enough to truck along 8 to 10 mph. It comes in various colors, has four-way dogleg suspension, and has hydrostatic drive with electronic controls. That’s just the basics, though. Keep reading to learn about the various options available for the Ripchair and what it’s really capable of doing – you’ll be amazed.

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