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BMW overtakes Toyota and becomes world’s most valuable car brand

The beginning of the year has been pretty tough on Toyota, thanks to the major recalls and various scandals. While many fans of the Japanese company believed the carmaker would survive and see its public image not too seriously tarnished, a new study shows that Toyota has indeed suffered, in terms of brand value.

Millward Brown, in its BrandZ Top 100 list revealed that BMW is now the most valuable car brand in the world, overtaking last year’s former number one, Toyota. The German company is worth $21.82 billion, as opposed to Toyota, which saw its value drop by 27% to $21.77 billion.

The podium was completed by Honda, which ranked ahead of luxury carmakers like Mercedes-Benz or Porsche. While drops in value were registered almost across the board for carmakers, there were companies that achieved growth, as opposed to this time last year. Among them were Ford, Volkswagen or Audi.

In terms of predictions for the future, Millward Brown analyst say they see Hyundai and Kia cracking the top 10 next year, while Chinese brands, like Geely, will see significant growth.


2010 Lexus GX460 back on sale, stability fix now available in dealerships

Lexus has just announced that the 2010 GX460 SUV is now back on sale and that the software update for the car’s stability control system is available, so there is no longer the possibility of losing control of the big Lexus.

While safety fans will definitely rejoice and drifting fans will be sad, Toyota is scoring this as a big win, hyping up the fact that it acted quickly and no victims were reported because of the tail happy luxury SUV.

As you may remember, at the middle of the month, Consumer Reports placed the 2010 GX460 on the ‘Do Not Buy’ list, as the car began sliding out of control if you took your foot off the acceleration in the middle of a corner (aka it started drifting).

The Japanese engineers worked diligently and modified the VSC software to take into account new parameters. As was shown last week, the car is now composed and no longer fit for any amateur drifting. Sales will be restarted while current owners are going to get their car fixed free of charge.


BMW planning X4 after X6 success

BMW is taking some pretty big risks lately, as highlighted by the launch of the X6 SAV/sports coupe/offroader etc or the 5 Series GT pseudo-shooting brake.

According to a new report from Autocar, it seems things are going to get even crazier as the company, after seeing the success of the X6, might launch a smaller version, called the X4. It will slot in, as its name suggests, above the next generation X3 (with which it might share the platform) and under the X5.

While the source says a decision hasn’t been made, it makes sense from a business standpoint. From a logic standpoint, the niche just isn’t big enough to warrant such a new model. Plus, don’t forget, there’s the 5 GT which is basically just an X6 without the increased ride height.

What do you think? Should BMW try to follow up on the success of the X6 with a smaller X4 crossover/coupe/sports something? Share your thoughts below.


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Ferrari F430 Spyder burns in the streets of Singapore

Supercars tend to offer some extreme thrills, unrivaled by most of the vehicles we see on the road today.

Sometimes, owners might get a bit too much than what they bargained for, and get some life threatening experiences alongside their expensive supercar.

We’ve seen Audi R8 models burst into flames or catch fire on the road, but now a new incident has been reported, concerning a Ferrari F430 Spyder, which caught fire on the streets of Singapore.

The incident happened two days ago, but not much is known about the whole deal. There were no people in the supercar, and the Singapore Civil Defense Force managed to extinguish the fire eventually. All we’re left are these terrifying photos before the fire crew arrived and after the blaze.


Video: Peugeot unleashes first ad for RCZ roadster

Peugeot is gearing up to release the first model, in a long time, that promises to revamp the image of the French carmaker: the RCZ roadster.

As such, the company released the first ad for the attractive coupe. While the message is pretty good, the RCZ, at least from this ad, does appear to a be a bit creepy rather than menacing.

Hit the jump to check out the first Peugeot RCZ ad and then share your thoughts about it in the comments sections below.

Hyundai presents new Elantra (Avante) in South Korea

Hyundai is on a roll these days, and just a week after it revealed the new Accent/Verna compact sedan at the Beijing Motor Show, the South Korean carmaker revealed the Elantra (or Avante, as it is know in Asia) at the Busan Motor Show in its native country.

As you can see above, the new Elantra sports the same fluidic design language, as seen on the bigger Sonata and on the smaller Accent. Thankfully the increased dimensions of the Elantra make it sport more attractive looks than its smaller brother.

In terms of engines, a new 1.6-liter direct injection inline-four cylinder unit will be available at launch, capable of 138 HP and 123 lb-ft of torque. The unit will be coupled to a six-speed automatic transmission, resulting in an improved fuel average by 10%.

The new Hyundai Elantra/Avante is set to go on sale in the carmaker’s native South Korea later this year. Expect it to reach other territories like North America or Europe around the beginning of 2011.


Suzuki extends ‘free gas for summer’ offer for all models

Suzuki launched a very interesting offer last summer, when it offered free gas for the whole season to anyone who purchased either the SX4 Sport or Crossover models.

Now, seeing as how summer is rapidly approaching and people are already thinking about going on vacation, the Japanese company has restarted the ‘free gas for summer‘ offer.

The promotion is now available across the model range, and includes the attractive new Kizashi sedan. Customers who purchase a new car will receive a card that that ranges in value from $280 to $442, good enough for three months of fuel. The amount of money is based on the EPA fuel average numbers for each model and on the NHTSA estimate that people drive around 1,000 miles each month.



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TVR set to bring Chevrolet Corvette-powered roadster, ponders hybrid tech

The UK had small sportscar manufacturers by the dozen in the glory days, but things aren’t looking that good in the present. One company which was deemed pretty much dead by the media was TVR, which didn’t reveal anything big after it was purchased by Russian rich guy Nikolai Smolenski.

For fans of the sportscar manufacturer, Autocar managed to track the Russian down and grilled him about the future of the once popular brand. It seems that the company has been restructured, according to Smolenski, but now it has some big plans for the next few years.

The TVR owner revealed that it has finally decided on what type of engine will power the next model. It seems that the future TVR roadster will use an American Chevrolet Corvette engine. No details on what engine will be chosen, either the 505 HP LS7, found in the Corvette Z06, or the 638 HP supercharged LS9 unit, found in the top of the range Corvette ZR1.

According to Smolenski, we will know more until the end of 2010. While lightweight, rear-wheel drive, American-powered roadsters might be on the wish lists of many rich people, Smolenski also wants TVR to do a bit of research in hybrid technology and also work on automatic transmissions, a feature that the next model can’t support, given its chassis and technology.

It seems that loyal TVR fans don’t have to worry so much know, as the company is slowly getting back on its feet.



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Lotus showcases lightweight, futuristic Toyota Venza

These days, practically all carmakers are trying to make their models as light possible in order to achieve the best fuel average. But while some may proclaim that aerodynamics also play a key role in keeping fuel consumption down, lighter is still better.

In order to further highlight the importance of reduced weight, Lotus, a sportscar manufacturer specialized in releasing lightweight models, has been asked by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to take a mainstream model, the Toyota Venza, work its magic, and see how the reduced weight will impact the fuel average.

The British engineers went to work and revealed the 2020 version of the Venza, now 38% lighter. The reduced weight did come at a rise of 3% in the cost of manufacturing, but the fact that its fuel average was improved by 23% does make it up for it. The futuristic people carrier had almost half as many parts as the current model, and used aluminum and other lightweight materials extensively.

Do bear in mind that the 2020 concept used technologies that will become viable around that time, so Toyota won’t go asking for plans from Lotus for the next Venza. Still, it does highlight the importance of keeping weight down in carmaking.



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Mercedes-Benz also announces a carbon fiber future for its models

It seems carbon fiber won’t be just a thing high end supercar manufacturers or tuners use on specific vehicles. After BMW announced that it will build a carbon fiber processing plant in the USA, and use the material on its future models, including the electric Megacity, Daimler has also revealed that the material will be used on Mercedes-Benz models.

As such, the German company partnered up with Japanese carbon fiber specialist, Toray Industries. While many of you might not be familiar with this company, it controls around 34% of the global carbon fiber market.

Future Mercedes-Benz will benefit from carbon fiber reinforced plastic body parts and other such materials, in order to achieve a lighter weight and improved fuel averages. The first car to boast such things will be the SL Class.


Audi A5

Cars are important for all of us nowadays because we all either have and drive a car or plan on buying one in the near future. Everyone has become more and more interested in cars in the last few years because it has become kind of impossible not to have a car these days as cars are helpful to us in many ways every day.
We all have the possibility to choose the perfect car for us to drive nowadays as there is a great variety of offers presenting all sorts of models of cars on the market. Each of them presents more or less interesting features and specifications to be considered according to our choices and needs when considering the possibility of buying a new car.

Audi cars have been appreciated by numerous car fans as well in the last few years because many of their features have proved to be very interesting to be taken into account when analyzing them in the idea of becoming able to decide upon their quality and in this way upon their usefulness in each case. One type of Audi cars that has also been analyzed and appreciated by numerous persons is Audi A5.

Audi A5 is an executive mid size type of car and its production began in 2007. As body styles in which this model of cars can be found available can be mentioned the 2 door coupe body style, the 2-door convertible body style and certainly, the 5-door liftback type of body style. In what concerns the type of layout presented by Audi A5 model of cars it can be mentioned that the engine is front longitudinal type and that the drive is either front-wheel type or permanent front-wheel type. The platform on which the manufacture of this type of cars has been based upon is considered to be MLB/MLP.

Like other models of Audi cars, Audi A5 also presents various possibilities of choice regarding its engine. Two examples of engines available to be used are a 1.8 L I4 Turbo FSI and a 3.0 L V6 TDI type of engine. In what concerns the transmissions having been made available for Audi A5 models of cars it has to be mentioned that there are 4types, as it follows: a 6 speed manual type of transmission, a 6 speed triptonic one, a 7 speed S tronic transmission and certainly an 8 speed Multitronic type of transmission.

Some of those interested in finding out more about Audi A5 model of cars might also be interested in being mentioned some specifications presented by these cars such as their dimensions. From this point of view it can be said that for example, Audi A5 S5 Coupe model of cars presents a length of 182.5 in, 73 in width and 53.9 in height. In what concerns Audi A5 cabriolet model of cars the dimensions are a little different: 182.1 in length. 79.5 in width and 54.5 in height. Certainly, the other two models of Audi A5 cars present slightly different dimensions as well. In this way Audi A5 Sportback presents a 185.5 in length, 73 in width and 54.8 in height. On the other hand, Audi A5 coupe presents the following dimensions: 182.3 on length, 54.1 in width and 54.1 in height.

There are numerous aspects related to each of these models of Audi A5 type of cars which can be considered and analyzed by all of those interested in getting better informed about this type of cars.

Opel Meriva

Cars are very important nowadays because everyone wants to have and drive one. There are numerous persons who already have and drive cars and others who do not have one yet or do not drive it but who intend to do this soon. Cars are seen everyday wherever we might go. Everyone has his or her own model of car according to the choices that have been made by each of us in this respect. There are cars of all kinds which can be used and which can be very useful for us to drive for many reasons.

Opel Cars are one type of cars that can be found on the market nowadays and which can also be seen very often on the street as well. This is because numerous persons have already decided to drive a car of this type due to some of their features and specifications that might have been considered as appropriate to be presented by such cars that might be useful for them to use. One such model of Opel cars is the Opel Meriva which was first produced in 2002 and which is still available nowadays.

Opel Meriva is a mini MPV type of car which is said to have been manufactured by following the platform GM Gamma. There are various possibilities of choice in what concerns the models of engines presented by this model of cars.

Some examples in this respect are: a 1.4L I4 engine, a 1.6L I4 Turbo type of engine as well as a 1.7L i4 DTI engine. In what concerns the types of transmissions presented by Opel Meriva model of cars can be mentioned the fact that there are two manual ones, a 5-speed manual and respectively a 6-speed manual transmission and a 5-speed automatic type of transmission.

The dimensions of Opel Meriva model of cars have been considered as it follows: 159.4in length, 66.7 in width, 66.7 in width and 64.0 in height. In what concerns the wheel base presented by it can be said that its size is of 103.5 in. There are two main generations of Opel Meriva cars: Meriva A and B. The first generation of such cars was made public in 2002 and there have been made certain changes to it in 2006. Opel Meriva B model of cars was presented this year in March and its production is believed to start sometime in June.

Opel Meriva A presents petrol and diesel types of engines and there are various options which can be made when choosing which of them we might enjoy more being included within the car that we might choose to drive. In what concerns Opel Meriva B model of cars it has been said that it will present great features that numerous persons , especially the ones interested in Opel models of cars will certainly appreciate.

Opel Meriva models of cars have been chosen by numerous persons who have considered them appropriate for them to drive in time. The new model is already said to have attracted attention and there might be numerous persons interested in buying it as well as a good alternative of choice in their case.

Lamborghini GTV 350

We all have and drive a car nowadays or intend to drive one soon. We have become used to driving cars and many of us actually enjoy doing this. Certainly, it is not all about enjoying to do this as cars are also useful for us in many ways and attention is required to be paid when driving a car and also when choosing what type of car to buy and use. We have many possibilities of choice in this respect, nowadays many more that there were in the past because in time numerous models of cars have been changed and improved making it possible in this way for new and better generations of such models of cars to be manufactured and presented to the public.

As we are all different and in this way we cannot all enjoy driving the same type of car. This is why we all decide to drive different types and model of cars according to various features presented by them and which might be more or less appropriate for the purposes in which we intend to use such cars.

Choosing a god car can also prove to be somehow challenging nowadays because there are numerous good models of cars available on the market and many of their features determine us to consider them as possibilities of choice as they might be the appropriate ones for the purpose in which we intend to use a certain model of cars.

There are old and new models of cars available to be analyzed by us nowadays because there are interesting features to be considered related to each of them. Older models of cars have been used by numerous persons in time whereas modern models of cars are used by some persons nowadays and are analyzed by others who are interested in buying one of them either because they might intend to change their old model of cars or because they might not have had a car before and they need to drive one. One model of cars that has been driven in the past is the Lamborghini GTV 350, which was presented to the public in 1963, the same year in which it was produced.

Lamborghini GTV 350 is a two-door coupe type of car. Its dimensions have been considered as it follows: 96.6in length, 68.1 in width and 48 in height. In what concerns its front track it can be said that I is one of 54.3 in and that the rear track presented by it is of the same size.

It is said to have weighted 1050 kg. In what concerns the structure of such cars it can be mentioned that it is said to be represented by a square steel type of tube chassis. Its body was made of steel and aluminum. Its engine is V12 type, presenting a capacity of 3464cc.

There are various aspects which could be considered as presented by Lamborghini GTV 350 models of cars and which users interested in this type if cars might appreciate when analyzing them.

Audi RS6

Nowadays, many more persons have and drive cars and this is because everyone has got accustomed to driving their own car and getting in this way much faster to work, to school, at home and also to various other places where they might need to go to. There are numerous types and models of cars available for us to analyze in order to decide according to what type of features and specifications that they might present the way in which they might be useful for us to buy and use.

Audi models of cars are familiar among all car fans nowadays because in time there have been presented numerous models of this type of cars and many of them have been discovered to present great features to be considered by all of those willing to decide upon the usefulness of such cars in their cases and for the purpose in which they might intend to use them. One model of Audi cars that has been considered by numerous car fans as useful to be taken into account and analyzed due to its interesting features is the Audi RS6.

There are two generations of Audi RS6 cars , one produced between 2002 and 2004 known as Audi RS6 C5 and the other one produced since 2008 and until now, known as Audi RS6 C6. These cars are considered as mid-size luxury executive type of cars or sports cars. They present longitudinal types of front engines and Quattro permanent type of four wheel drives. In what concerns the platform on which it is considered their creation to have been based upon it is important to be mentioned that it is represented by a Volkswagen platform, known as the C platform. In what concerns the type of transmission presented by these cars it can be said that it is a ZF automatic type of transmission.

Audi RS6 model of cars have been mainly appreciated for their great performance as it has been presented by the company having manufactured and presented them as well as by all sorts of car fans which might have had the chance to drive one of them or who have carefully analyzed their specifications which widely influence their performance.

Audi RS6 C5 model of cars can be found available in two body styles, a 5-door Avant style and a 4-door saloon type of body style. Its dimensions have been considered as it follows: 191 in length, 72.8 in width and 54.6-56.1 in height for the model presenting an Avant body style and of 54.7-56.3in for the saloon model. Its fuel capacity is considered to be of 80L.

Audi RS C6 is available in the same two body styles and its transmission is a 6-speed ZF tiptronic automatic type as well. Its dimensions are the following ones: 193.8 in and respectively 194 in length in the case of the models presenting an Avant body style and respectively in the case of the ones with a saloon body style, 74.4 in width and 57.5 in and respectively 57.3 in height. Its fuel capacity is also one of 80 L.

There are similarities and dissimilarities between the two generations of Audi RS6 cars and they are all useful to be analyzed by those interested in buying one of these models of cars or just for being very well informed about them for their own general knowledge in cars.

Opel Calibra

Cars are essential in the world in which we live as they are used by everyone in one way or another. Cars are useful to be used in many situations and we are all interested in being able to buy a good car for us to drive these days.

There are numerous persons who already have and drive a car but there are also numerous persons who do not have one yet or have a very old model of cars that they might no longer consider useful to be used and in this way they are interested in finding a good car that they might afford paying for and that might prove to be very useful for them to drive.

This is why it is important for all sorts of analyses to be made to all sorts of different models of cars available on the market so that everyone interested in buying a new car or in getting better informed about a certain model of cars to have the opportunity of easily discovering this type of information and of using it in order to become able to decide what model of cars might be the most appropriate one for them to drive. Opel Calibra is one model of cars that can be analyzed because some persons might be interested in learning more about this type of cars as well.

Opel Calibra model of cars has also been known in time as Chevrolet Calibra or as Holden Calibra model of cars. Its predecessor is known to be Opel Manta and the class in which it has been included is represented by sports cars. Its body style is a 2-door coupe type and as layout it presents an FF type or a F4 type. The platform on which its manufacture is considered to have been based upon is GM2900. This model of cars was produced between 1989 and 1997.

Opel Calibra model of cars presented three engine possibilities: a 2.0L I4 type of engine, a 2/0 L Turbo I4 engine as well as a 2.5L V6 engine. It also presents there types of transmissions which are as it follows: a 5 speed manual type of transmission, a 6-speed Gertrag type of manual transmission and a 4-speed ZF automatic type of transmission. It was considered the most aerodynamic type of production car in the entire world in the 1990s.

These are some of the numerous features and specifications which can be considered when analyzing a certain model of cars such as Opel Calibra. Different persons are interested in various different models of cars and sometimes even the same features presented by the same car might be interpreted differently.

This is why it is important for all of those looking to buy a new car go make use of all sorts of opinions expressed by persons who might have already worked with models of cars that they might be interested in and at the same time to make their own analysis by making use of all the specifications presented by these models of cars that they can easily find and that can help them in the end to decide upon the quality of a certain model of cars that they might enjoy driving.

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