Thursday, July 31, 2008

SpeedART Porsche 997 Turbo Tuning – a really lethal blade!

I’ve recently seen some chart on German TV about the most favorite cars in the world. 

There were names such as Nissan Skyline, Mercedes-Benz 300SL and etc., but the most surprising was the name of this winner – the first place of Porsche 911 around the year 1975. 

The car with its toughness, simple sporting interior, powerful engines and great workmanship conquered all other famous vehicles. But time has come, so today we can enjoy the legend’s next successor of famous Porsche family. 

In 2006, the Porsche 997 Turbo was introduced in Geneva and it’s a successor of the famous Porsche 911. Its design from the Porsche 996 was restructured to look of a real racer. 

Distinctive lines, suction openings, rear wing, LED lights and other various elements make this car really uncompromising. 

The Porsche 997’s engine comes from the Porsche 964/GT1 model with some improvements of course. Sharp sporting sound is a result of six cylinders with displacement of 3.6 liters and cooperating turbocharger. No surprise that it can produce amazing 480 hp (353 kW) at 6000 rpm and 620 Nm of torque. 

This performance potential allows hitting 100 km/h in just 3.7 seconds (3.4 seconds with Tiptronic automatic transmission) and the top speed is 311 km/h. There’s a new system VTG (Variable Turbine Geometry) developed by BorgWarner to maintain better and perfect work of the turbocharger. 

Porsche will be always the symbol of pure dynamics and sporting emotions. Its really the best candidate for the first place in that chart, because this is a machine that never disappoints its owner. 

Perfect technical parameters, amazing body and even better power-to-weight ratio – this is the Porsche 911.

Toyota Prius Shows Next Gen Body for First Time

The images confirm the rumors that the Prius would be growing in exterior dimensions – the car seen here is both longer and wider than today’s version – meaning more usable space for backseat passengers and trunk storage. Toyota is said to be giving the Prius a power hike as well, supplying the car with better performance in addition to its beefier body. While one might expect that a larger more powerful car would indicate an attendant drop in fuel efficiency, we’re told that the new Prius will be even more fuel efficient than the old one. That’s a viable claim considering the pressure Toyota must be under to improve the vaunted mpg numbers for its green halo car.

While we’ve seen images of a Toyota test mule for the next generation Prius hybrid already, that earlier test vehicle was little more than a powertrain mule built from the current model with a new front fascia attached. These new images reveal much more; the very first look at the all new, next generation Prius.

Scroll down for the spy shooter’s own words on the next gen Prius and be sure to browse through our gallery of exclusive images above.

The world’s most popular Hybrid car, the Toyota Prius is getting a new look, and here are the first photos of it.
Caught earlier as a mule, with the new front welded to the old body, these are the very first photos of the completely new car.

One of the ways in which Toyota will pull off this trick new packaging is by replacing the current car’s nickel-metal hydride batteries with smaller lithium-ion units. Reported solar panels on the roof also seem to be for real.

Look for the Prius to start a family in this generation as well, with possible station wagon and convertible variants reportedly on the table.

Other news about the Prius: the roof will get solar cells to power the air-condition, and it will also be built in a new plant in Mississippi, USA. So when you look under the next generation Toyota Prius, it could stand: Made in USA, underneath.

Except for the fact that the new Prius has grown, and is now longer and wider, especially the rear seat passengers have gotten more space, and the boot is bigger, rumors are talking about a whole family of Prius models. That means that we also will see a station wagon and maybe even a convertible with the Prius badge.

Insiders in Japan are talking about more power and yet still better fuel economy. There might even be a plug-in version this time which will be even more fuel efficient.

Other news that Toyota is working with, is that they will change the NiMh batteries for lighter and smaller Li-ion batteries. The Li-ion will not just make it possibly to load some more stuff in the boot because they are smaller, no, it will make the Prius faster as well.

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BMW M3 Sedan 2009 Update

The new BMW M3 Sedan is the first four-door M3 since the E36. You’ll immediately notice it doesn’t look like a regular 3-Series sedan, but rather it shares the same front end treatment with the M3 Coupe.

The M3 Sedan is based on most of the same components as the coupe, delivering 420 horsepower from 4.0 liters and maximum torque of 295 pound-feet at 3,900 rpm. While the coupe targets the Audi RS5 and Mercedes CLK63 AMG, the sedan takes aim at the Lexus IS-F, Audi RS4, and Mercedes C63 AMG.

Unlike the M3 and M6 Coupes, the M3 Sedan does not have a carbon fiber roof. The Sedan comes standard with the same 18-inch wheels as the Coupe.

Power from the BMW M3 Sedan’s V8 is transmitted to the rear wheels through a close-ratio six-speed manual gearbox or the company’s seven-speed M DCT dual-clutch unit. The new final drive comes with a Variable M Differential Lock generating up to 100 percent locking action with fully variable action whenever required, ensuring optimum traction on all road surfaces.

The Sedan features driver-adjustable settings for crucial dynamic controls including steering, damping and stability. An available steering-wheel-mounted “MDrive” button can be used to store these preferences.

2009 Update

For the 2009 model year, BMW revised its M3 sedan — after just one year on the market. Most notable is the change to the rear taillight design, featuring a ‘notched’ design and drastically smaller reverse lights.

Other changes include the addition of the seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox with Drivelogic, plus a revised center console, active head restraints for whiplash protection, and a selection of new exterior colors.


Prices for the M3 Sedan start at 53,800 — $3,000 less than the coupe.

A premium package, priced at $1900, offers power folding mirrors, universal garage opener, digital compass mirror, BMW Assist, Novillo Leather interior and choice of three optional interior trims.

The technology package includes EDC, M Drive, Comfort Access, and a navigation system - all for $3250.

19″ wheels are $1200, Electronic Damping Control is $1000, and Extended Novillo Leather can be had for $2000 as a standalone option or $1000 with the premium package. Enhanced premium sound is $1900.

Buyers seeking an open-air experience can opt to pay $1050 for a glass moonroof.
Source: BMW

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Wednesday, July 30, 2008

All New Honda Jazz/Fit Revealed

The all-new Honda Jazz have been revealed a month ahead of its world debut at the Tokyo Motor Show, revealing a wider and lower grille with an optional glass roof.

Called the Honda Fit on the local market in Japan, the new Jazz builds on much of the technology of the predecessor like the fuel tank located in the centre of the vehicle with a flat floor.

It delivers stronger performance with improved economy and emissions from its two new engines, has more space and is even easier to use.

New ACE body structure

Even more efficient safety performance results from the introduction of the ACE (Advanced Compatibility Engineering) body structure, a concept that is being progressively rolled out across the Honda range. Its structure, in particular a front polygonal main frame, helps to reduce the negative effect of misalignment between vehicles of different sizes and construction and multiple energy absorbing pathways disperse impact energy to prevent cabin deformation.

Standard on all models are dual front and side airbags, full length side curtain airbags and three-point seatbelts in all five seating positions, those in the front with dual-stage pretensioners. The front passenger airbag can also be deactivated to allow a rear facing child seat to be fitted to the front seat and for the first time Jazz is equipped with seatbelt reminders for both the front and rear seats. Front seats are also fitted with active headrests to minimise the potential for whiplash injuries.

Two ISOFIX fittings in the left and right rear seats together with tether anchors in the roof ensure correct child seat installation.

Larger, more refined cabin with even better functionality

The ingenious interior layout of the original Jazz, with its compact suspension and centrally-mounted fuel tank liberating more load space, together with the increased external dimensions of the new model, mean interior comfort has been taken to a new level.

Rear seat passengers now have 37 mm greater knee room, while the distance between front and rear passengers is up by 30 mm. The slightly wider body also means shoulder room increases by 44 mm in the front and 43 mm in the rear.

Visibility gets a considerable boost, too. Reduced width A-pillars, a larger windscreen and quarter windows three times the size of those in the previous model make for more relaxed driving, while retractable rear headrests ensure the view out of the rear window is now totally unobscured.

Magic Seats now one-motion dive-down

Given the popularity of the previous Jazz's innovative ‘cinema' style rear seats, it comes as little surprise that Honda chose to offer a similar arrangement in the new car; but while the latest Magic Seats operate on the same principle, they are even more convenient since they have a one-motion, dive-down operation. No longer is there a need to move the front seats forward to collapse the rear seats. Instead, thanks to headrests that are virtually flush with the seatback, the 2:1 split rear seats are able to clear the front seats even when the latter are slid back to their rearmost position.
New Double-Trunk boot feature (1.4-litre models)

The outstanding practicality of the Magic Seats concept is complemented in the new Jazz by a flexible luggage area based on similar principles to the arrangement found in the Honda CR-V. Standard on 1.4 models, which are equipped with a tyre repair kit, the Double-Trunk boot features an underfloor storage area concealed by a double hinged panel - Regular Mode. The 230 mm deep, 64 litre capacity lower compartment is ideal for stashing sports gear or wet items, and once covered, won't soil other luggage.

The floor can be removed altogether or folded up against the rear seats to make full use of the total depth available - ideal for particularly tall objects (Tall Mode). Alternatively, rather than folding the complete panel against the seat backs, its rear half can be folded up to create a load shelf at half height - so creating a double load space - Upper/lower Mode. Heavier items can be stored below, while lighter items can be placed on the upper shelf, and since it incorporates a load net, is perfect for carrying awkwardly shaped items, preventing them from moving around.

Total luggage space available is 399 litres in models with a tyre repair kit, greater than that of some compact MPVs and class-leading in the supermini sector. The previous Jazz had a total of 380 litres (VDA).

Refined cabin environment

High quality, pleasant-to-the touch materials, stylish design and tasteful colours give the cabin a more upmarket feel.

More comfortable front seats with better support, a driver's footrest, a height adjustable driver's seat, a steering wheel adjustable for reach and rake and larger rear seats are just some of the features that contribute to the more cosseting, more relaxed cabin environment. Extra sound insulation and the increased body rigidity also play their part in making the Jazz a pleasant place to be. And for a real sense of spaciousness, the Jazz 1.4 EX is equipped with a panorama roof that extends over the rear seats for a great aerial view. Heat absorbing glass and a power sun shade ensure a comfortable cabin environment all year round.
Source: Honda via: sportscarforums

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Detroit-Specter Werkes C6 Corvette GTR Revealed

The GTR shares only the roof, rear hatch and glass with the exterior of the 2008 Chevy Corvette Z06 upon which it is based and has a footprint widened by four-and-a-half inches.The overall design effect is one of taking the C6 Corvette, mixing it with a touch of Viper RT/10.

The Specter Werkes GTR combines the distinctly shape of wellknown American muscle cars with a custom bodywork.

After a few months waiting for the new generation of Specter Werkes Corvette GTR extreme, based on the C6 version of the car, Michigan and the company finally presented the car in all her details. The model is based on Corvette C6, ant it is a unique and impressive interpretation of the Corvette basic form.

The company says that the new car will have many levels of engine tune, but the first is based on LS3, up from the standard 6.2L to 6.8L.
Combined with a tune it goes to 535hp (398kW) and 530lb-ft (719Nm) of torque, thanks to a Corsa exhaust. The car is also more wide than the base model with a wider covering and broadened suspension. Also the alloy whels, measuring 19 x 11in at the front and 20 x 12in at the rear provide enough space for the huge 285/30ZR19 front and rear 335/25ZR20 Michelin Pilot Sport 2 Zero Press tires.

Stop Tech 15 inch brake discs and six pistons in front with 14 inch mate and four-piston calipers in the are perfect for stopping the car at high speeds.

The car is painted in BASF silver, while the interior features standard Spinneybeck GTR sport seats and leather trim details. The Corvette GTR package have a base price of $ 34995. Of course all GTR are custom built...

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Schumacher Wrecks Ferrari F430 Prototype on the Ring

Last week Ferrari had exclusively reserved the Nürburgring for testing of a Ferrari 430 Scuderia prototype, and our spy photographer on the scene noticed it was Michael Schumacher driving. Also, as co-driver he had his son, Mick, who seemed to be enjoying some quick laps at the famous Nordschleife.

We recently reported that seven time Formula One World Champion, Michael “Schumey” Schumacher helped complete final test stages of the new Ferrari California. With past development involvement with other notable Ferrari cars such as the Enzo and 599 GTB, Schumacher has become a permanent fixture as a Ferrari test driver on and off the track.

Our spy photographer states that an hour later the track was closed after an accident was reported by the 430 Scuderia at Schwedenkreutz. Some rumors quickly emerged that its was Michael's son Mick who was driving the vehicle, but this is highly doubtful since Mick is only 9 years old, track conditions were damp, we can clearly see his silhouette in the passenger seat and the F430 Scuderia proto hit the guardrail at 250 km/h (155 mph).

According to Schumacher's spokeswoman Sabine Kehm, "Michael called me and said 'We have crashed the car but are going to continue with another one',"
Source:World Car Fans

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Tuesday, July 29, 2008

CLR X650 BMW X6 by Lumma

Tuning companies are catching on to the all powerful teaser image, and German tuner, Lumma Design, have issued theirs - with the controversial BMW X6 model. Love it or hate it, the BMW X6 Coupe Crossover is an interesting car and Lumma's CLR X650 is no different – yet in a different character.

With a beefy front bumper fascia, which contains no less than 6 air vent openings, the entire kit gets a dash of aggression with side skirts and quarter panel leg vents plus revised mirrors, however, the added attitude comes from the 40mm suspension drop with the 23-inch arch filling black dished wheels.

As one of the first tuning companies to put together a dramatic styling kit for the X6, the CLR X650 takes the whole X6 hatchback coupe vibe and molds it

AC Schnitzer Presents BMW X6 Styling and Performance Package

In the X6 by AC Schnitzer, the front skirt with its diagonal air intakes and repositioned fog lights are exposed. The drive-under protection has been removed in favour of a more dynamic contour of the spoiler edge. The rear carries a massive skirt with framed edges. In contrast to the original, all components are painted body-colour throughout, so the body appears downstretched and hence more dominant. Instead of the drive-under protection originally fitted here, AC Schnitzer Designer Michele Viandante has opted for a rear diffuser.

The new BMW X6 exerts a particular form of magnetism: not only does its chassis sit perfectly on the road, it also magically attracts attention. Now it appears there is only one place where the fascination, dynamism and presence of the first Sports Activity Coupé (SAC) can be enhanced: in the workshops of AC Schnitzer in Aachen. The result is a visual and technical masterpiece which further magnifies the core qualities of the X6.

Typical AC Schnitzer: The vehicle's appearance is not misleading, but simply a reflection of its inner values. The renowned BMW tuner has developed a real firecracker under the bonnet of the diesel versions 3.0dX and 3.5dX with a new Motor Control Unit. Precise performance data will be released shortly. Of course, sheer engine power is not the only ingredient in sporting performance. So Manfred Wollgarten, Technical Director of AC Schnitzer, has developed a unique suspension spring kit for the X6 on the North Loop of the Nürburgring.

One thing can be disclosed: Despite its high body, the X6 by AC Schnitzer in this configuration will show a clean pair of heels to many sports saloons. Perfect handling with corresponding Look and Feel is ensured by the "EVO" 3-spoke Sport Airbag steering wheel. With AC Schnitzer, you hold the road firmly in almost any position. The X6 by AC Schnitzer takes control on public roads as willingly as on changing terrain with varying up and down gradients!

Another eyecatcher is the chromed tailpipes of the dual-flow exhaust system in AC Schnitzer Racing Design. The BMW X6 is not the only SAC in the world, but it is one of the first vehicles to be fitted with the multipiece AC Schnitzer alloy wheels Type Vll. With their black paint and tightly arranged spokes, the 22" rims present a challenging stance. The changing angles of the web pairs give an air of sophistication.

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First in road Spy Photos Ferrari California

As the Ferrari California heads into the final stages of development prior to its public unveiling in Paris this October, engineers are keen to keep the new model taped despite its recent media unveiling.

Seen here in the famous shade of blue Ferrari calls, Azzurro California, these are some the first “real life” photos of the California taken on the autostrada just outside of Modena.

Big thanks to David for submitting the pics!

Source:World Car Fans

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OFFICIAL: Porsche Introduces New 911 Targa

After the facelifted Carrera and Carrera 4 debuts, Porsche is following up with the 911 Targa facelift. Available in the same variants and 997 facelift upgrades, the 911 Targa 4 and Targa 4S feature more powerful direct injection engines, PTM Porsche Traction Management replacing all-wheel drive and Porsche's new 7-speed Doppelkupplungsgetriebe or double-clutch gearbox.

The visual highlight of the 911 Targa, as before, is the 1.54-square-metre glass roof made up of two segments, the elegant sliding roof at the front and the tailgate. When opened completely, the roof slides within seven seconds beneath the tailgate, offering an open space above the passenger compartment of 0.45 square metres.

The sliding roof comes as standard with a new sunblind offering even greater privacy than before and, when closed, covering the entire area of the sliding roof and opening and closing electrically independently of the roof itself. The glass roof and the tailgate come in special anti-sunglare glass, protecting the occupants even in bright sunshine from UV radiation and excessive heat.

Compared to the 0-100 km/h time of 4.7 sec and 4.5 time of the facelifted Carrera and Carrera S, respectively, with PDK trans, the heavier 911 Targa 4 accelerates to 100 km/h in 5.0 seconds while the Targa 4S does it in 4.7 seconds.

Top speed is also a little slower of 289 km/h (179 mph) for the base Carrera while the Targa S is 284 km/h (176 mph). Carrerra S top speed is 302 km/h (187 mph) and the Targa 4S notches slight below at 297 km/h (184 mph).

Expect market launch and pricing information to be released after its October public debut in Paris.
Source: World Car Fans

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Monday, July 28, 2008

Gumpert Apollo takes on America, foiled by speed bump

The first Gumpert Apollo on American soil was brought out for its big debut Saturday, only to make more of an impression than intended. That impression was not only left on showgoers, but also on the speed bump leading into the parking lot. With roughly 4 millimeters of ground clearance it was easy to see this coming. The driver had brought the car from the sole U.S. distributor to show it off at a weekend cruise. He somehow failed to recognize that the speed bump was in fact approximately half the height of the low-slung supercar and after inexplicably getting the front air dam over the hump, found himself stuck.

The car came down and gently ground to a halt. It teetered a bit as it crept along the driveway, producing a grinding noise that had all of the witnesses cringing. As the carbon undertray was polished along its midsection, it became apparent that the rear tires might not make it over too. The driver stopped as the rears lifted just enough to take away traction. After a few moments of contemplation, he had the passenger get out and the lower payload gave the suspension just the right amount of lift to get the job done. Afterwards, there was much rejoicing in supercarland. A follow-up note from the dealer told us that there was thankfully no damage to the car from this incident. We recommend that anyone considering buying one of these 2400 lb, 750 hp monsters consider waiting for the "softer" model the company has pitched. Hopefully it will have an adjustable suspension.

2010 Renault Alpine Sportscar All But Confirmed?

Underpinning this vehicle would be an Infiniti G37/ Nissan 370 Z base, which we think wouldn’t be a lame idea in the least bit, given the outstanding handling characteristics of these two cousins. Moreover, the name Alpine would be the one to carry a sports Renault. You know the name from decades ago when it used to build winning racing cars using Renault engines. Although WCF reported on such a car a few weeks ago, it has been very much a rumour. Up until now.

While Renault car sales in France have been robust in the first half of 2008, in Europe – its biggest market – the group is down 4.6 percent. If higher sales and better market penetration is the question, could a sports coupé be the answer? The Cartribe reckon Renault thinks so. They say after an interview with one of Renault’s highest-ranking officials, news was revealed to them of a sportscar similar to the Nissan’s 350Z will be on sale by 2010.

A Renault proper sportscar we suspect would use a relatively small turbo engine rather than a large V6 block for obvious reasons; weight, compactness, emissions and a possible return of the turbo to Formula One. The car will not be based on any existing Renault car and will be quite different, even radical in styling. Renault desperately needs to justify its multi-million-Euro involvement in F1 and so far, as good as RenaultSport is, it hasn’t happened to the extent desired.
Source: WorldCarFans

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Sunday, July 27, 2008

Car News Is the BMW M6 CSL Still Coming?

In early 2004 we had a small but very informative conversation with a highly-placed source at BMW. The person revealed that the then-new 6 Series would indeed go quite above 300kW. Much higher. It turned out reference was to the M6, all 378kW of it. That’s not the very interesting part by the way; your yawns are telling. That part is the story of a “lightweight” 6, something we might call an M6 CSL.

Our source confirmed the future production of such a model, but claimed it probably won’t be badged a CSL. And while we trust this source almost 100 percent, we can’t help but nervously look at the clock, relentlessly ticking away. New model 6 is due out in 2010, yet we still have no M6 CSL.

Meanwhile, a growing number of insiders are talking about an M3 CSL, slated for the year 2010. It is said to carry about 100kg less than the standard 4.0-litre V8, but adds at least 30 bhp in the process, giving it a 4.5 second shoot from zero to 60 mph. Excess fat will be trimmed ala the usual suspect material, carbon fiber. Slicker rubber as well as other minuses will ensure these performance figures. What of the Nürburgring though? A time of 7:45 is thought to be the target for that.


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