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Volkswagen Golf GTI Cabriolet might debut in Geneva

VW Golf GTI Cabriolet Worthersee

The UK journalists from Auto Express are saying that the GTI version of the Volkswagen Golf Cabriolet will be making its debut next month at the Geneva Motor Show. We’ve already seen a soft-top edition of the GTI in 2011 at the Worthersee tuning event organized in Austria, while the new production version is scheduled to be the last big thing for this generation of the car until the Golf 7 is launched in 2013. If this rumor turns out to be true, this will be the second time in the car’s history when the cabriolet model gets the hot GTI version, after the first generation of the car during the 80s.

VW Golf GTI Cabriolet Worthersee

The GTI engine has been available for quite some time in the Golf 6 Cabriolet and also in the Eos hard-top model, but up until now there wasn’t a full GTI-spec version of the Golf. Under the hood it will be the 2.0-liter turbo engine that pumps out 208 hp, along with a GTI-specific suspension which should include the Adaptive Chassis Control. Inside the cabin we should expect a GTI interior with tartan seats.

VW Golf GTI Cabriolet Worthersee

The power unit will most likely be mated to 6-speed manual and DSG transmissions, while the wheels set should include 17-inch alloys. The aforementioned Worthersee version had massive 19-inch Glendale alloy wheels which are a 1,000-pound optional over the standard 17-inch Monza alloys that the GTI hatch rides on.

VW Golf GTI Cabriolet Worthersee

Auto Express also believes that there are good chances that the Worthersee version will also make it into production. If this happens, it is going to be the most powerful convertible ever made by Volkswagen, powered by a 2.0-liter turbo engine with 268 hp sent to all four wheels. That car shown last year had the Edition 35’s LED lights, along with an aggressive bodykit that includes bespoke side skirts and front + rear bumpers.

VW Golf GTI Cabriolet Worthersee

The Volkswagen Golf GTI Cabriolet is expected to cost about 4,000 pounds more than the hatchback so it should carry a starting price of approximately 27,000 pounds. It is scheduled to hit the dealerships this September.

Source: Auto Express

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Report – 2014 Audi R8 will be more powerful and lighter

2011 Audi R8 GT

The next generation of the Audi R8 won’t be out until 2014 but it seems that details about the car are already emerging. Autocar believes that the new model is codenamed AU724 and it’s being developed alongside with the replacement for the Lamborghini Gallardo. Both cars will probably feature an advanced carbon fiber and aluminum monocoque that has a curb weight of 437 lbs (198 kg).

The 2014 Audi R8 will be 132 lbs (60 kg) less heavy than the current model and it will weigh somewhere around 3,307 lbs (1,500 kg). It will feature just about the same engine options but these will suffer some modifications which will make them more efficient and powerful. Rumors say that the 4.2-liter V8 will be capable of generating about 450 hp (456 PS / 336 kW) while the more powerful 5.2-liter V10 will churn 550 hp (558 PS / 410 kW). Also in the works is a GT version of the R8 that will develop 580 hp (588 PS / 432 kW) but this won’t come out until 2016.

The Ingolstadt-based automaker will probably bring to this year’s edition of the Moscow Motor Show the facelift for the R8. The event is scheduled in August.

Source: Autocar.co.uk

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Fresh news about the upcoming Fiat 500L

Fiat 500

It seems that the Italian automaker Fiat is working hard on a wagon version of the popular 500 model which will be wearing the 500L designation (L from “large”). Recent reports say that there will be two versions of the car, one that will have five seats while the other will feature seven seats. The latter will probably not be sold in the United States but nothing is certain at the moment.

The upcoming Fiat 500L is going to ride on a platform that is based on the Fiat Punto and will have a high roof, five doors and a front end that will look much like the other 500 models. The car is expected to be 4150mm long which is going to make it 60mm longer in comparison to the 500 hatchback model.

The same report mentions that the 500L will be offered with the company’s 2-cylinder TwinAir turbocharged 0.9-liter engine that produces 85 hp (86 PS / 63 kW). Aside from this one, there will also be a beefier 1.4-liter gasoline engine with 77 hp (78 PS / 57 kW) or 105 hp (106 PS / 78 kW). The 500L is also going to get a more frugal 1.3-liter diesel engine that can develop 75 hp (76 PS / 56 kW) or 95 hp (90 PS / 70 kW).

The automaker wants to produce 100,000 units of the 500L in the first full year and it will be manufactured at the company’s factory located in Kragujevac, Serbia. The car is expected to make its official debut this March at the upcoming Geneva Motor Show.

Source: Automotive News

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2013 BMW M6 heading to Geneva Motor Show?

2013 BMW M6 (rendering)

According to the guys from BMWBlog, the new generation of the BMW M6 will be making its official debut at the upcoming Geneva Motor Show which is scheduled for March.

Rumors say that the car will be benefiting from a sportier suspension, lightweight alloy wheels, carbon ceramic brakes. Under the hood it is expected to have the same engine as the M5 which as you probably know is a V8 4.4-liter unit that pumps out 552 hp (560 PS / 412 kW) and a peak torque of 502 lb.-ft (680 Nm). The power unit is linked to a seven-speed M DCT transmission.

According to various sources, the BMW M6 (F12) will be able to do the 0-62 mph sprint in 4.2 seconds, which means that it will be 0.2 seconds faster than the outgoing model. The convertible will need about 4.5 seconds to hit 62 mph from start.

Source: BMWBlog

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Volkswagen Golf 7 heading to Paris Motor Show?

VW Golf 7 (rendering)

According to Auto Motor und Sport, the seventh generation of the Volkswagen Golf will be making its official debut later on this year at the Paris Motor Show which will be organized in September. The car is expected to be wider and longer than the current model and it will ride on the new MQB platform that was also used for the Cross Coupe concept.

The VW Golf 7 will have a sleeker styling with a lower roofline and steeply-raked windscreen. Some say that it will also adopt a sportier interior cabin that will feature a new instrument panel that will be angled towards the driver.

We don’t know what engines will power the Golf 7 but most likely we should see a wide array of gasoline and diesel units. According to various sources, the GTI version might get an upgraded 4-cylinder 2.0-liter that generates 220 hp (223 PS / 164 kW).

Auto Motor und Sport says that at the Paris Motor Show we should also see a new Porsche concept, the next-generation Mazda 6 and Skoda Octavia, along with BMW’s front-wheel drive van and the Opel Junior.

Source: Auto Motor und Sport

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Lotus Ethos Heading To U.S. ?

2010 Lotus City Car Concept

Not many people in the United States have heard of the Malaysian automaker Proton, but they are the owners of Lotus. A few years ago, the British automaker launched (and later on revised) a 3-cylinder, range-extending, 1.2-liter engine & generator set for EVs. Using that powertrain, Proton revealed a lineup of plug-in Emas minicar concepts while at the 2010 Paris Motor Show, Lotus brought its own city car concept.

According to the guys from duPont Registry, the recently renamed Lotus Ethos might be heading to the United States. This might occur sometime in late 2013 as a 2014MY or even later than that date. The price tag for the Ethos is expected to be somewhere around $45,000.

Dony Bahar who is the CEO at Lotus hinted that the city car could be also sold as a pure battery EV, without the traditional gasoline engine. The electric range of the Ethos is up to 40 miles and with the range extender it can go for up to 250 miles. The 0-62 mph sprint is done in approximately 9 seconds, en route to a top speed of 105 mph.

The car will probably be built by Proton and depending on the demand they might roll out as high as 1,500 cars annually.

We’ll have more news once they become available so stay tuned.

Source: Green Car Reports

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New Details About Next BMW 3-Series (F30) Emerge

2012 BMW 3-Series

The 6th generation of the BMW 3-Series will make its official debut at the beginning of next year during the Detroit Motor Show and it seems that the car, dubbed F30, is now during its final phase of a 3-year durability testing program. More and more prototypes have been seen around the company’s Munich HQ as well as the Nurburgring.

The sedan version is the first one that will be launched, followed later on by five other variants: Touring, GT, coupe, cabrio and a GranCoupe. The last three models will ditch the 3-Series designation and will wear the new 4-Series nameplate. The sedan is set to go on sale in the United Kingdom in March at a starting price which will be 4% higher in comparison to today’s price tag.

Design-wise, the car as we said a few days ago will look a lot more like the 5-Series, which is a smart approach BMW is taking with its two best selling models. The car will have a more wedge-shaped profile while the kidney grille will evoke the shark nose appearance of the original E21 3-Series from 1975. Other updates worth mentioning include a heavily angled window, a high bootline and defined front wheel arches, as well as more prominent lines running down the flanks.

The wheelbase of the next BMW 3-Series is going to be 50mm longer while the tracks have been increased by approximately 20 mm in the front and 15 mm out in the back. The target of BMW’s engineers is to increase the interior cabin space so that it could match its main competitors, the Mercedes-Benz C-Class and the Audi A4.

The new 3-Series will ditch the regular MacPherson strut suspension in the front in favor of a space-saving double wishbone design which promises to provide a shorter front overhang, a slight reduction in the turning circle in comparison to the current model, along with an improved wheel control. The back will still feature the multi-link suspension. However, it will benefit from a bigger number of aluminum components and will feature variable damper control.

Another update that we have to mention is the inclusion of an electro-mechanical steering that will come with an ActiveSteering option in order to provide the necessary variable assistance based on the speed of the car. A novelty of the model will be the two different wheelbases. The sedan, touring, coupe and cabrio models will ride on the SWB version while the GT and the GranCoupe will use the LWB version that will be 75mm longer in comparison to the wheelbase of the current 3-Series. China will also get a LWB version of the sedan.

The car will be available with a choice of 11 engines; five of them will be turbocharged gasoline units while the other six will be turbodiesels that will have piezo injectors. Keep in mind that the car won’t be available at first with all of these power units. The now legendary 3.0-liter naturally-aspirated 6-cylinder gasoline engine will be retired in favor of an all-new 4-cylinder 2.0-liter turbo unit that powers the X1 xDrive28i. The entry-level gasoline engine will be the 4-cylinder 1.6-liter turbocharged unit with 150 hp.

A trio consisting of turbocharged 2.0-liter engines will be available, with outputs of 180 hp for the 320i model, 210 hp for the 325i and 245 hp for the 328i. The top-spec 335i will get a 6-cylinder 3.0-liter turbo engine with 306 hp.

As far as the diesels are concerned, the new BMW 3-Series will be available with a 4-cylinder 2.0-liter engine that will be available in the following output configurations: 122 hp for the 316d model, 143 hp for the 318d and 184 hp for the 320d. These will be joined by three 6-cylinder 3.0-liter engines with 204 hp for the 325d, 245 hp for the 330d and 286 hp for the 335d. All of these engines will be mated as standard to a 6-speed manual transmission and clients will be able to choose an optional 8-speed automatic gearbox developed by ZF.

Also in the pipeline are at least three other models that will benefit from an optional 4WD configuration. We are talking about the 328iX, 320dX and the 330iX models and rumors say that if the demand will exist, BMW will roll out other similar ones. The German automaker is also working on a frugal variant of the 3-Series in the form of a 320d EfficientDynamics version that will manage to return about 75 mpg UK on the combined cycle.

After the launch of the Touring variant, BMW will most likely prepare an ActiveHybrid version that will be powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged gasoline engine that will work in tandem with an electric motor which will be mounted within the housing of the automatic gearbox.

Some of the technology available on the upcoming BMW 3-Series include night vision, lane change warning, forward collision warning, the company’s four-color version of the head-up display that features traffic sign recognition, along with surround view parking system that has side-mounted cameras plus driving dynamic control to modify the mapping of the power unit, suspension and gearbox.

Source: Autocar

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2014 Audi A4 Plug-in Hybrid Will Get e-Quattro

2011 Audi A4 Avant

More and more details have surfaced the Internet this week regarding the 2014 Audi A4 (B9). According to the German journalists from AutoBild, the vehicle will ride on the MLB Evo platform which will lower the car’s weight by 265-331 lbs (120-150 kg). Although it will weigh less, the new A4 will grow in size to be a more worthy adversary for the enlarged 3-Series from BMW.

We don’t have any certainties about the engines, but we should expect a range of TDIs which will produce from 150 to 300 PS whereas the gasoline units will develop between 150 to 350 PS. All of the models in the lineup will most likely benefit from the stop/start system, thermal energy recovery system and brake energy recuperation.

According to various reports, we will also see a plug-in hybrid variant which will feature an electric motor mounted on the rear axle that will allow the car to travel between 19 and 37 miles (30 to 60 km) on electric mode. Moreover, this configuration will come with an all-wheel drive system named e-Quattro that won’t have any mechanical connections between the two axles.

In addition, rumors say that Audi will also launch a CNG variant as part of the company’s e-gas project.

Source: Autobild via WCF

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BMW 2-Series In The Works

BMW 2-Series (rendering)

Rumors say that BMW is working on the 2-Series which will be a coupe that is scheduled for a 2013 release. The car is rumored to be based on the recently launched 2nd generation of the rather ugly 1-Series and it will also come in a convertible flavor as well. What’s even more interesting is that BMW is working on an M2 version which will replace the extremely hot 1-Series M Coupe, a limited edition model.

This decision will allow the German car manufacturer to separate the hotter 1-Series-based cars from the standard 5-door models. The new kid on the block will adopt a sleeker appearance that will feature the nose of the recent 1-Series, along with wider wheel arches as well as a steeply raked roofline. The same rumors say that the car will be tuned in order to provide a sportier handling. The convertible version will probably get an electric folding canvas roof, just like the today’s 1-Series convertible model.

Under the hood it will have just about the same engines that power the 1-Series, including here a 1.6-liter TwinPower 4-cylinder turbocharged gasoline unit that in its current configuration fires 170 hp in the 118i model. As far as diesels, the 2-Series will probably get an updated 2.0-liter engine with 181 hp.

Source: Auto Express

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Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport Might Get More Power

Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Grand Sport

You probably know that the days of the Bugatti Veyron are numbered but good news is that the Grand Sport version will go out with a serious bang. Bugatti’s president, Wolfgang Durheimer hinted in an interview given to De Telegraaf’s Autovise that a more powerful variant of the car will be released. He denied the possibility of a Super Sport (1,184 hp / 1,200 PS / 883 kW) version, but he did say that this Grand Sport will have “more than 987 hp (1,001 PS / 736 kW)”.

As a reminder, Bugatti plans on rolling out 150 units of the Veyron Grand Sport and Durheimer stated that the supercar maker has already sold 40 units and a very wealthy client from the Middle East ordered eight Veyrons!

Source: Telegraaf.nl via Motor Authority via WCF

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VW Bulli, Due In 2014?

VW Bulli

A few months ago, the German car manufacturer Volkswagen revealed the interesting Bulli concept and rumors regarding a possible production version surfaced right away. According to recent reports, the car will indeed go into production sometime in 2014 and it will carry most of the concept’s features.

VW Bulli

VW is expected to make the 2014 Bulli an electric people carrier and we should see a car slightly a little bit bigger than the Polo, with a 5-passenger configuration. The production version will measure 3.99 m in length, 1.75 m in width and 1.70 m in height, while the curb weight will be less than 1.5 tons.

VW Bulli

There is a strong possibility that when it will come out it will have the same electric powertrain as the concept, which means that we should expect a motor that generates 115 PS and 260 Nm of torque. According to VW, this motors & lithium-ion battery pack combo is capable of providing the Bulli with a driving range of up to 186 miles (300 km).

Let’s hope that these rumors will turn out to be true and in 2014 we shall see a production version of the Volkswagen Bulli.

Source: ZerCustoms

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Cadillac Converj Heading To Production?

Cadillac Converj

We have some interesting news coming from Green Car Reports as according to the journalists over there; General Motors has put the Cadillac Converj back on track. They say that the car has been already approved for production and the luxurious coupe will hit the market in 2013 as a 2014 model.

Most likely the car will be powered by “a Generation 1.5 Voltec” which translated means an updated version of the one found in the 2011MY Volt. Most likely, this one will have a better acceleration to match Cadillac’s image. However, this won’t be an entirely new generation of the engine because that one won’t come out until 2015.

As a reminder, the sexy Cadillac Converj made its official debut at the Detroit Auto Show back in January 2009 and was an instant hit among car journalists and automotive fans as well.

Source: Green Car Reports

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Daihatsu Copen Revival In The Works

2011 Daihatsu Copen

To be honest I’m not what you’d call a fan of the Daihatsu brand but I’ve always had a soft spot for its cute Copen convertible. Those of you who like this car will be glad to hear that according to insiders within the company, a new generation of the model is under development and it seems that it will be powered by an engine from its parent company, which if you didn’t know is Toyota.

The previous generation of the Copen was discontinued this year and had a small 660cc turbo engine which was replaced by a more frugal 1.3-liter power unit in order to meet the stricter emissions rules.

The new one which Daihatsu is working on will go back to its roots and sources say that it will be powered by a 2-cylinder, 0.9-liter gasoline engine that will use roughly the same technology of the TwinAir engine found in the funky Fiat 500. This new car promises to return 90 mpg UK while CO2 emissions will be below the 80 g/km mark.

Most likely, the all-new Daihatsu Copen is going to be wider and longer than the discontinued model due to the reason that the automaker’s bosses definitely want the car to comply with the latest safety regulations. The same sources say that it will probably still have the folding hard top of the original model.

Rumors say that Daihatsu will launch the new generation of the Copen sometime in 2013 and if we learned one thing from this automaker is that the car will probably be very cheap.

Source: Auto Express

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Next Generation Mini Lineup Will Be Extended

2011 Mini Coupe

It seems that the third generation of the Mini will consist of 10 individual models and the first one that will hit the market is going to be the 3-door hatchback, codenamed F56. The model will be revealed before the end of this year and it will probably go on sale sometime in 2013. By 2015, Mini will launch 9 spin-offs, including a new version of the Clubman estate as well as an MPV which will most likely be called Traveller (internally known as Spacebox).

This new generation of the Mini is based on an all-new BMW-engineered platform dubbed UKL1. It has a FWD architecture and it will be available in two wheelbase lengths, featuring a MacPherson strut front suspension and a Z-axle rear end borrowed from BMW. The German automaker announced recently a 500 million pounds investment for preparing the Cowley, Oxfordshire for the 3rd gen of the Mini. Most of these 10 models are going to feature a new lineup of 3-cylinder engines developed by BMW which will be just as powerful as the current 4-cylinder units but will be able to provide more fuel efficiency.

The power outputs of these engines is expected to range from 120 to 160 hp and this platform is also suitable for the new 4-cylinder 2.0-liter BMW engines that could output more than 230 hp, which will most likely be used for the hot JCW version as well as for a potential all-wheel-drive Mini John Cooper Works.

Aside from this AWD configuration, the UKL1 platform is going to offer at least one hybrid drivetrain. In addition, the platform will be used for a new series of compact models that will wear the BMW badge, including 3- and 5-door hatchbacks, a tall 5-Series GT-styled model as well as a super compact sport utility vehicle.

Taking into consideration that there are going to be ten Mini models that will feature this platform, along with five BMW cars, this UKL1 platform will most likely become BMW’s best-selling vehicle range. With the launch of the third generation Mini, it means that the British car company will finally be entirely integrated into the BMW family. If you remember, Mini was saved by BMW when the broke up with the Rover Group.

More details about the lineup of the third generation Mini should be out in the weeks to come so stay tuned for additional details.

Source: Autocar.co.uk

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Report – Audi Planning Mexico Production Plant

If we were to believe a recent report published in a German magazine, the Ingolstadt-based manufacturer Audi is considering on opening its own production plant in North America, most likely in Mexico.

A few days ago, Manager Magazin said that Rupert Stadler (who is Audi’s CEO) wants the company to have its own factory in Mexico in order to build the Q5 model. However, the big bosses over at Volkswagen think that it would be wiser if Audi share production facilities at Volkswagen’s factory located in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

Just a couple of weeks ago we’ve learned that VW is thinking about opening an engine and transmission plant somewhere in North America that would provide the parts for the local production of VW and Audi models.

As most of you probably know this, Mercedes-Benz and BMW already have a manufacturing plant there. The aforementioned German magazine said that a decision will be made most likely this October.

Source: Reuters via WCF

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