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Alongside unveiling the second-generation Tesla Roadster in November 2017, Elon Musk made the audacious claim that it would reach 60 mph (96 km/h) in 1.9 seconds.


We’re yet to see if that time is achievable by the Tesla but small Japanese marque Aspark has shown its Owl prototype achieving such a blistering time. indicating that Musk’s claim wasn’t so outlandish after all.


This Aspark Owl was unveiled last year and like the Roadster, utilizes an all-electric powertrain. With roughly 1000 hp on tap, it recently reached 62 mph (100 km/h) in 1.9 seconds during testing.


A clip of the Japanese supercar shows the insane feat being achieved on a very short ribbon of tarmac. It may not be the most appropriate testing facility but the car seems to achieve the feat with relative ease.


As brisk as the Owl’s acceleration is, it’s worth noting one significant factor in its speed. The tires. Look closely and you’ll notice that they come from Hoosier and are probably slicks designed for drag racing. Throw on a set of road-legal rubber and the same acceleration number probably can’t be replicated.


Aspark intends on producing and selling 50 examples of the Owl.


VIDEO












source:carnewmag





The BMW M550i is one heck of a set of wheels. With 456 horsepower and 480 lb-ft of torque on tap, it’ll rocket to 60 in under four seconds – making it quicker than the previous M5 with which it shares its 4.4-liter twin-turbo V8, and just half a second more lethargic than the new one.


If that new M5 weren’t such a bonkers performance machine, we’d scarcely think it’d be necessary. In fact, looking at this particular machine, we can’t help but wonder if this wouldn’t be the one we’d want.


On display at the world’s largest BMW dealership, located in the Persian Gulf emirate of Abu Dhabi, is a brand-new M550i xDrive, all decked out in white with a deep brown leather interior. Making it even more tempting is the optional M Performance body kit it wears and those oversized 20-inch alloys in a dark grey finish.


Even more compelling is the price gap from this model to the full-on M5. While the top-level model will set you back over $100k in these United States, the M550i sells for less than $75k. That’s a heck of a difference – about enough to buy a base Ford Mustang with the EcoBoost turbo four. If we didn’t have the six figures to spend, we get the feeling we’d be plenty satisfied with the next best thing.


Shame that, with new emissions regulations coming into effect, the Bavarian automaker has reportedly had to shut down production of the M550i – albeit only temporarily. Here’s hoping that when it reemerges with new restrictions in place, it won’t prove any less tempting.




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source:carnewmag




We thought it was a pretty big deal for Mitsubishi, relatively speaking, when it issued a recall for over 140,000 vehicles. But now the same manufacturer has issued another two recalls that amount to another 226,995 units.


The larger of the two affects certain Outlander and Outlander Sport crossovers. The problem here comes down to the actuator shaft for the parking brake, which could be prone to corrosion due to water leaking into the rear brake calipers. That could render the parking brake inoperable, leaving the vehicle to roll away unexpectedly.


To address the problem, Mitsubishi is asking the owners of certain 2014-16 Outlanders and 2013-16 Outlander Sports to bring their vehicles in to their local dealers. There technicians will inspect the rear brakes and replace certain components if necessary. That already amounts to an estimated 170,354 vehicles across the United States… but there’s more.


At the same time, the Japanese automaker is notifying the owners of various models to bring their vehicles in to have the sunroof glass assemblies. The sunroofs could detach while under way, posing a severe hazard to other vehicles on the road. Models affected include certain 2007-10 Outlander, 2008-10 Lancer, 2009-10 Lancer Evolution, and 2010 Lancer Sportback models.


That may seem like a wide array of models. But since that second recall only affects those models fitted with sunroofs, it only affects an estimated 56,641 vehicles in the US.


Combined with the previous recall issued just the other day, that brings the total number of vehicles being recalled up to 368,048. (That is, assuming none of the vehicles being recalled will have to be serviced for more than one issue at a time.) Either way, that’s a heck of a lot of vehicles being recalled by a manufacturer that sold just 103,686 units in America last year. And that marked a ten-year high.


With the scope of recalls ranging from 2006 through 2016, we’re looking at nearly half the 922,766 vehicles that Mitsubishi sold over the course of those eleven years.




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source:carnewmag





British sports car maker Lister has received over £3 million worth of orders for the 200+mph Thunder withing the first 24 hours of its announcement.

The exact figure earned for the 22 models ordered is £3.1 million ($4.4 million), with each car priced from £139,950. The bespoke Thunder is now the fastest-selling new Lister in the company’s 65-year history.


“I am delighted, overwhelmed and gratified by the huge level of interest and excitement the Thunder has already generated. Following the release of the Thunder prototype, the number of phone calls and email inquiries have been bonkers,” stated Lister CEO, Lawrence Whittaker.


“Securing over £3 million-worth of orders within the first 24 hours is a company record, and I am now even more thrilled to be revealing the Thunder to the world at ExCel on Thursday 15th February, as the car looks even better in the metal, carbon fiber and Nappa leather than it does in the photographs!”. said Whittaker. “I’d like to thank Tiff Needell for his epic work on the launch video. As a former Lister racing driver and having watched him on Top Gear and 5th Gear throughout my life, working with him was a dream come true.”


Powering the F-Type-based Lister Thunder is a supercharged 5.0-liter V8 pushing out 666HP. The estimated acceleration time is estimated at around 3 seconds, while top speed stands at over 200 mph (322 km/h).


As for visual mods, the car boasts custom carbon fiber front and rear bumpers, extended splitter, bonnet vents, decals and carbon exhaust tips, while a carbon fiber bonnet is available as an optional extra.




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source:carnewmag




With its high-revving naturally aspirated V8 engine, the E92 M3 remains one of BMW’s hottest cars ever.

It’s easy to drive on a daily basis, it’s quick, reasonably loud and sufficiently practical, both as a Coupe and a Cabriolet. Meanwhile, its V8 produces 420 PS (414 HP) at a whopping 8,300 rpm and 400 Nm (295 lb-ft) of torque.


This being an M3, it surely must cost an arm and a leg to maintain. However, on this episode of Road and Race, we get to hear what one E92 M3 owner had to go through one year of ownership, and we must admit, we’re pretty impressed with how low maintenance costs were.


The British owner ended up spending £34 on coolant, £120 on the oil and oil filter, a further £26 on power steering fluid and £10 on a set of leaf grilles. While he did spend way more on brake components, those don’t actually count as maintenance costs. Besides, if you don’t track the car, you’ll save a lot of money on brake and tire wear.


In total, maintenance and repairs over a year came in at just £180 ($254). Not bad at all for an 11-year old 420 PS V8-powered BMW.


So, as long as you find one in good condition and at a reasonable price, you should be good to go, provided that you can also keep up with the fuel and insurance costs, of course. In the States, on Autotrader, it’s not uncommon to find E92 M3’s with under 100,000 miles (160,000 km) on the clock for around $25,000.


VIDEO


https://youtu.be/LuvJ8j1XkVw



source:carnewmag





Audi continues to put the final touches on its edgy Q8 crossover and as these spy shots indicate, BMW X6 owners may soon start regretting their choice of SUV.


First unveiled in concept guise, the Audi Q8 will be slightly longer, wider, and shorter than both the X6 and Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe. Thanks to this long, low-slung profile, the Q8 looks seriously impressive, especially on the streets of Warsaw, Poland, as snapped by Carscoops reader Marcin Laudan.


As previous spy shots have confirmed, the production-spec Q8 will bear an uncanny resemblance to the concept. Consequently, the front end will be dominated by an expansive grille and a set of sharp headlights that’ll strike fear into other luxury crossovers.


Interestingly, Audi decided to premiere the Q8 Concept with a plug-in hybrid powertrain. This package consisted of a 328 hp 3.0-liter TFSI powertrain and an electric motor providing an additional 100 kW and 330 Nm of torque.


At this stage, it remains unclear if this hybrid system will be an option for the production car. Either way, we know that customers will have a selection of petrol and diesel engines at their disposal.


Audi has yet to confirm a launch date for the Q8 but we should definitely see it in the flesh this year.


Hat tip to Marcin Laudan!




more photos…










source:carnewmag





Kia has a new SUV concept in the works, but it’s not bringing it to Chicago, or Geneva, or any of the other major international shows coming up that you might expect. This one’s destined for the Auto Expo show in New Delhi.


Called the Kia SP Concept, the little crossover previews a new model that the Korean automaker is developing specifically for the Indian market. That’s new territory for Kia, considering that the show (set to open in little over a week) will mark the manufacturer’s debut in India.


Previewed by these two teaser images, the concept is described as “bold and stylish,” combining “sophisticated beauty, breakthrough technology, and high functionality in a small SUV form” that’s “inspired by Indian heritage and driven by advanced technology.”


Kia will showcase the concept alongside a full range of its global models: 16 in all, ranging from EVs and plug-in hybrids to the Stinger sports sedan.


“All of us at Kia Motors are extremely proud to take our first steps into one of world’s largest automotive markets. And we are here to build more than just great cars,” said Kia president Han-Woo Park. “We aim to set a new standard in the Indian auto industry by providing consumers with world-class products and services, while engaging with and giving back to the local community.”


The concept will be unveiled on February 7 at the center of Kia’s stand in Hall 7 at the India Expo Mart in Noida on the outskirts of New Delhi in India’s capital region.








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source:carnewmag




The slow-selling C4 hatchback was dropped last year, and Citroen now has the C4 Cactus pseudo-crossover to compete in the compact segment.

However, in a surprising move, the French firm will reportedly bring the C4 hatch back, reports AutoExpressafter talking to the company’s CEO, Linda Jackson, who admitted that the regular C4 hatchback is still “extremely important” to them.


“I’m not saying we’re going to get rid of Cactus, but we will introduce a new C-segment car“, Jackson said. “It’ll be in the sector, but it will not be traditional. Nor will it necessarily be the C4 Cactus. As time evolves, we’ll move back into what we call our core model strategy, which will be to have a C-segment car.”


Introduced in 2010 and facelifted four years later, the second generation Citroen C4 shared its underpinnings with the first-gen Peugeot 308. The latter was replaced by an entirely new car in 2013, which won the 2014 European Car of the Year award.


PSA’s next logical step would be to use common platforms for the new Citroen C4 (name unconfirmed) and the third generation Peugeot 308, which would allow both cars to share the same engines and technologies and, thus, reduce costs.


At this point, however, there’s no word on when the new C4 might be launched and whether it’ll get a Cactus version as well.


Note: 2014 Citroen C4 shown




more photos…




source:carnewmag





On paper, the new Ford Kuga (aka the Escape in the U.S.) has everything it takes to compete against the best in its class.

The latest version of Ford’s SUV comes with sharp looks and the company’s latest tech. The cabin is big enough for hauling a family, although not as big compared to rivals like the Skoda Kodiaq.


The interior mixes soft-touch materials with hard plastics and the dashboard has a distinctive design that’s compromising its ergonomics in certain places. The SYNC3 infotainment system offers clear graphics and all the options you could want from an SUV of this class.


Engine choices include a 1.5-liter EcoBoost petrol with 120hp, 150hp and 180hp, a 1.5-liter TDCi diesel with 120hp and a 2.0-liter TDCi diesel with either 150 or 180hp. You can get a six-speed automatic transmission with the petrol engines and a PowerShift dual-clutch unit with the diesels.


The rather firm suspension of the Kuga isn’t ideal at low speeds, while the claimed sporty character doesn’t translate into a fun driving experience, according to Carwow’s review.


With the segment being a hot-contested one, the Ford Kuga has to tick a lot of boxes to make it into customers’ buying list. So, does it? Find out the answer in the following video.










source:carnewmag




It hasn’t been two months since Rolls-Royce started producing the new Phantom, and you can bet that most of them built to date have gone to eagerly awaiting customers.

If you put down a deposit early enough, you may not have to wait too long before your build slot comes up. But if you didn’t, and can’t wait, there’s one already listed for sale on James Edition.


Crafted in black over black with orange leather accents inside, this limousine is listed by Hollmann International out of Bremen – the same city where Mercedes builds the SL, SLC, C-Class, E-Class, and GLC at its largest plant.


Like any other example of the new Phantom VIII, it comes equipped with a mammoth 6.75-liter twin-turbo V12 engine, sending 563 horsepower and 664 lb-ft of torque to the rear wheels through an eight-speed automatic transmission in the most serene manner possible.


This is a the normal wheelbase model, but at 139.8 inches (over eleven and a half feet) from grille to tail, it’s even longer than a Cadillac Escalade ESV (the Suburban-sized one, not the shorter Tahoe). It weighs about as much, too, even with its new lightweight platform.


This example is brand-spanking-new, with just 31 delivery miles on the clock. Hollmann doesn’t disclose how much it’s asking for the privilege of owning one of the most opulent automobiles on the market. But if there’s ever been a case of “if you have to ask, you can’t afford it,” a brand new Phantom fits the description perfectly.




more photos…




source:carnewmag





VW has launched a proper GTI version of the Up city car, and now it’s time to find out whether it deserves that badge or not.

The company wants you to think the new Up GTI as a modern reincarnation of the original Golf GTI. If this sounds like too far-fetched, consider that the two cars are similar both in size and performance.


Power comes from a turbocharged 1.0-liter three-cylinder TSI engine that makes 113hp and 170lb-ft of torque. The 0-62mph (100km/h) sprint takes 8.8 seconds and the Up GTI won’t stop accelerating until it hits a respectable 122mph (196km/h).


Three-cylinder engines always produced a rather special, almost boxer-like, soundtrack, and the Up GTI is no exception – and that, in our books, is a big plus.


Of course, being a modern GTI means that the range-topping Up comes packed with all the kit you could want from a car this size. On the other hand, what’s even more important, especially from a VW wearing the GTI badge, is how it fares on winding roads/


It’s not that we often get to have a car of this size with such clear sporting aspirations. The only similarly-sized rivals the moment are the more powerful and expensive Fiat 500 Abarth, the Opel Adam S and the Renault Twingo GT.


So, does the sportiest Up really deserve that GTI badge, or is VW’s marketing department trying to make the exploit the moniker’s rich history? Let’s hear what Auto Express has to say about that.


Video










source:carnewmag





Despite FCA’s expectations, Alfa Romeo will not return to profit this year, Sergio Marchionne said during the company’s fourth-quarter earnings call.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles is still rebuilding the Italian brand, according to Marchionne. “The losses are shrinking, but we need more volumes,” he told Automotive News.


FCA didn’t break out Alfa Romeo’s 2017 financial performance and Marchionne didn’t give a timetable for the brand’s return to profitability.


Last April FCA’s Chief Financial Officer Richard Palmer said that Alfa Romeo would be profitable in the fourth quarter of 2017. Marchionne backed that comment by saying that the Italian brand will turn a profit for 2018, but at the end of last October he appeared more cautious, saying that Alfa Romeo’s US sales were slower than expected and that the brand was also “behind the curve” in China.


FCA isn’t releasing production or sales numbers for its brands, leaving market researchers to make an estimate. JATO Dynamics say that Alfa’s global sales increased from 71,700 cars in 2016 to 118,000 in 2017, while the Fim-Cisl union says that production of Alfa Romeos was increased last year to 150,722 units, from 93,117 in 2016.


Marchionne’s 2014 plan for the revival of the Alfa Romeo brand targeted 400,000 global sales by 2018 and a lineup of eight new models. In 2016, FCA lowered these targets and pushed the date for completing the eight-model range to mid-2020.




more photos…










source:carnewmag

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