Porsche announced today that the second generation of its phenomenal Macan crossover will go fully electric. Apparently the decision was made this past July, with part of the deciding factor being the desire to invest in electrified vehicles at the Leipzig, Germany, plant where the Macan is currently built. Porsche has said that it wants 50 percent of its new cars to have “an electric drive system” by 2025, and an electric Macan will be a big factor in achieving that. The Leipzig plant currently produces the Macan and the Panamera, with more than 90,000 vehicles rolling off the line every year.
The next Macan will be based on the Premium Platform Electric (PPE) platform that is being developed in conjunction with Audi, which will use the platform to underpin its own all-electric models; PPE will underpin the next-generation Taycan sedan. (The Taycan that is debuting later this year is on a different platform, code-named J1, that will be shared with the Audi e-tron GT.) The Macan will have the same 800-volt tech as the next Taycan and will probably share its electric motors and battery packs, too.
We know that the upcoming, first-gen Taycan—or at least one version of it—will have two electric motors producing 600 horsepower, a range of more than 300 miles, and a zero-to-60-mph time under 3.5 seconds. If those specs carry through to the following generation, then the top-end Macan EV should match or get close to those numbers, too. But expect multiple lower-end variants to have less power and a shorter range than the “Turbo” equivalent. The current Macan does start at less than $52,000, after all, and Porsche will likely want to keep the Macan’s entry-level status intact.
This news is bittersweet. The prospect of a compact, fully electric Porsche crossover is pretty exciting to us, especially if it drives anywhere as well as the current 10Best-winning model does. But part of the existing Macan’s appeal is its varied engine lineup. The Macan is available with a turbocharged inline-four and multiple different turbocharged and twin-turbocharged V-6s in different states of tune.
Porsche says the next Macan will enter production at the start of the next decade, most likely in 2021. It will follow the first Taycan sedan, which will make its debut by the end of this year, and the Taycan Cross Turismo and Sport Turismo wagon variants, which Porsche says will come soon after the standard car. The second-gen, PPE-based Taycan will likely arrive midway through the decade at the earliest.
When the Bentley Bentayga came out back in 2016, it claimed the title of “world’s fastest SUV” with its 187-mph top speed. A year later, Lamborghini took that record away with the 190-mph Urus. Now Bentley reclaims the record by a nose with the 2020 Bentayga Speed.
We’ve said previously that the Urus will hit 190 mph flat out. Technically, however, the automaker’s quoted 305 km/h top speed calculates to 189.5 mph. Now, Bentley says the Bentayga Speed will do 306 km/h, which is an honest 190.1 mph.
Now, you might think a 0.6-mph difference is meaningless, but apparently Bentley doesn’t. The British automaker is gleefully calling the Bentayga Speed the “world’s fastest production SUV.” It’s especially silly when you recall that Bentley and Lamborghini are both owned by Volkswagen Group—and the Bentayga and Urus share a platform. Seems there’s a bit of sibling rivalry at play here.
The Bentayga Speed makes it to 190 mph with the help of a revised version of the 6.0-liter W12 available in lesser Bentley SUVs. Power rises by 26 hp to 626 hp, while torque stays the same at 664 lb-ft. For comparison, the 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 in the Urus puts out 641 hp and 627 lb-ft of torque.
The Bentayga Speed also gets revised suspension and exhaust tuning, plus new 22-inch wheels and a larger rear spoiler. There’s also lots of Alcantara inside to remind you and your passengers that this is the fast one. Optionally, you can get carbon-ceramic brakes, which might seem like overkill, but then again, so is a 190-mph, 626-hp luxury truck.
You also can’t help but wonder how long the Bentayga Speed’s record will hold. After all, Lamborghini will probably bring out a hotter Urus at some point, and Aston Martin and Ferrari are working on SUVs, too. We also know that yet another challenger from within the VW group is coming in the form of a 680-hp Porsche Cayenne Turbo S e-Hybrid. It’s only a matter of time before we see a 200-mph utility vehicle.
By: Chris Perkins, February 14, 2019
A potential rival to Tesla in electric cars just got a big boost from Amazon.
The online retail giant is leading a $700 million investment in Rivian, a Michigan company that is developing a battery-powered pickup truck and an electric sport utility vehicle. The automaker announced the new round of investment on Friday, offering few details but saying it would remain independent.
Founded in 2009 by an M.I.T.-trained engineer, R. J. Scaringe, Rivian first showed its truck and S.U.V. at the Los Angeles Auto Show in November. The key feature of each is a chassis that is shaped like a skateboard and includes all the components that propel the vehicles — a large battery pack, axles, suspension, cooling system and four electric motors. The company says its pickup will be able to go up to 400 miles on a full charge.
The deal is the latest example of how the auto industry is being reshaped by new technologies and nimble companies that have raced ahead of many traditional carmakers. While General Motors, Ford Motor and others are scrambling to introduce new electric vehicles, Tesla has become by far the leading seller of electric cars in the United States. Waymo, a division of Google’s parent company, Alphabet, is considered by some analysts to be the leading developer of autonomous vehicles.
“We’re inspired by Rivian’s vision for the future of electric transportation,” Jeff Wilke, Amazon’s chief executive for worldwide consumer, said in a statement. “R. J. has built an impressive organization, with a product portfolio and technology to match. We’re thrilled to invest in such an innovative company.”
An Amazon spokeswoman declined to elaborate on the thinking behind the Rivian investment.
Since 2015, Amazon has been building out its own logistics network, one that is a “global, end-to-end network covering all transportation modalities,” Morgan Stanley said in a research note last month. It owns dozens of planes and has a transoceanic shipping operation, not to mention trucks, rail and other ways to deliver products and packages. The company spent more than $27 billion on worldwide shipping last year.
Amazon relies on contract drivers in passenger cars and trucks to make many last-minute deliveries quicker than it can through delivery partners like the United States Postal Service. Last month, the company said it was testing a delivery device called Scout, which is the size of a large ice chest that can “roll along sidewalks at a walking pace.” The company says it is using the devices to deliver packages to customers in a suburb near Amazon’s Seattle headquarters.
Remember the SSC Ultimate Aero? It was the American-built hypercar that, back in 2007, briefly stole the title of world’s fastest production car away from the Bugatti Veyron by recording a two-way average speed of 256.18mph. The Ultimate Aero’s successor, the Tuatara, was first announced in 2011, first shown as a concept at the 2013 Dubai motor show and unveiled in production form early in 2018. Now its maker has released a video of the model on the road.
With SSC aiming for the rather ambitious goal of a 300mph top speed, the new car ought to have the specs to match. A mid-mounted, twin-turbo flat-plane-crank 5.9-litre V8 pushes up to 1750bhp to the rear wheels through a seven-speed automated manual gearbox. The car also features a carbonfibre chassis and body, and has a dry weight of 1247kg and an impressive drag coefficient of just 0.279 – both claims better than the Koenigsegg Agera (which currently holds the production car speed record) and Bugatti Veyron.
SSC recently said: ‘Production of the Tuatara is ready to begin, with pre-orders currently being secured by those who wish to own this next-generation hypercar.’ Pricing information hasn’t been announced. However, being such a limited model with just 100 in the pipeline, we can’t imagine it’ll be cheap.
In November 2017, Koenigsegg’s Agera RS took the crown of world’s fastest production car, with a staggering two-way average speed of 277.9mph. Factory test driver Niklas Lija put the car’s 5-litre turbocharged V8 to good use, hitting over 284.6mph in one direction and smashing the Veyron Super Sport’s previous speed of 267.8mph. With the possibility of VAG-backed Bugatti also working on a model to beat this record behind closed doors, SSC certainly has its work cut out…
for the FULL VIDEO, click here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=2&v=ywdcgVUWffY
By: Sam Jenkins & Jordan Katsianis, February 14, 2019
For more cars visit: https://www.evo.co.uk/videos/planetevovideos/270541/video_shelby_tuatara.html
The Cullinan is a big deal, and not because it weighs nearly 6,000 pounds. Although Rolls-Royce‘s first SUV starts rolling into driveways this holiday season, you don’t have to wait for one to appear under a freakishly large Christmas tree to learn more about it. As we discovered when we drove the 2019 Cullinan, the Rolls-Royce is more of a stately super-luxury cruiser than a quick and posh back-road carver. Great. But how much do you really know about the 563-hp, 12-cylinder Rolls-Royce Cullinan? Keep reading for six cool facts about the new SUV.
Rolls-Royce says it’s starting to hear interest from a few customers who want an alternative to high-quality leather. Such an option may become available on the Cullinan down the line, but not until the right, no-compromises leather alternative is found, one representative told us. We’ve begun to see premium fabrics on lower-priced luxury cars, from a base-model Volvo V60 wagon whose interior wowed MotorTrend editors, to the non-leather seating options on the Range Rover Velar and electric Jaguar I-Pace, which combines a wool blend with a suede-like material.
For the type of experience the Rolls-Royce Cullinan offers, $330,350 (including destination and gas guzzler fees) is an appropriate price. But no one drives home in a base-model Rolls-Royce. Sales to early adopters of the new model are in the $380,000-to-$390,000 range, Rolls-Royce says.
For a traditional Rolls-Royce experience, order the Cullinan with the so-called Individual seating—a four-passenger layout with two separate rear seats. Between the reclining seats sits a drinks cabinet with a refrigerator and champagne flutes, as well as Rolls-Royce whisky glasses and decanter. If this is your family road trip car, maybe go for the five-seat Lounge option. Although you can order the Cullinan any way you wish, Rolls-Royce expects about 80 percent of American customers to pick the five-seat Lounge option, but just 50 percent for Chinese buyers.
Twenty-two-inch wheels make the most of the Cullinan’s imposing presence (yes, like that Cadillac). Those wheels are standard in the U.S.—Rolls-Royce will make the 21s a no-cost option. Winter tires are available on the 21-inch wheels, and all Cullinan tires are specially designed to reduce road noise. And maybe it works, because the Cullinan provides a smooth and quiet ride, just as you’d expect from a Rolls-Royce.
By: Zach Gayle, December 29, 2018
For more cars, visit: https://www.motortrend.com/news/2019-rolls-royce-cullinan-6-cool-facts/
The 200-mph club is an exclusive one. Less than 20 cars on sale today are members, and of those, there are only five sedans. Today though, a sixth joins. The Alpina B7 has been updated for 2020, and it boasts a claimed 205-mph top speed, making it the fastest four-door of the bunch. By our reckoning, it’s the fastest sedan there’s ever been.
Alpina says the current-generation B7 was able to do 205 mph before the 2020 model-year update, but in the US at least, it was limited to 192 mph. A BMW USA spokesperson told us the 2020 B7 will be capable of an honest 205 mph here. Humorously, the B7 can be fit with all-season tires, and so equipped, the top speed is limited to 130 mph.
The Alpina B7 is, of course, based on the current-generation BMW 7-Series, which was updated for 2020, mainly with an absolutely enormous pair of kidney grilles. As before, the B7 is powered by a 4.4-liter twin-turbo V8 with 600 hp and 590 lb-ft of torque, though the engine has been upgraded with larger turbo impellers and new software. Alpina also upgraded the 7er’s eight-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive system for the 2020 B7.
The B7 also gets air springs that lower the car 0.6 inches when placed into Sport+ mode, which surely helps reduce drag on the way to 205. All of that helps shave a tenth off the B7’s 0-60 mph time, bringing it down to just 3.5 seconds. BMW’s own V12-powered M760i only manages 3.6 seconds, though it’ll probably be updated in the not-too-distant future.
As you’d expect, the B7 gets all the other upgrades that come to the 7-Series for 2020 including a new digital gauge cluster, and the latest version of BMW’s iDrive infotainment system.
And while it could just be these photos, we think the B7 is the best looking of the new 7er bunch. Alpina’s signature blue paint and multi-spoke wheels generally tend to do good things for BMWs, and that’s true here.
Such speed and luxury don’t come cheap. The 2020 B7 will cost $141,700 when it goes on sale in the third quarter of this year, and that doesn’t include a $1000 destination fee.
In 1909, Bugatti founder Ettore Bugatti unveiled his first ever model, the Type 10. It was “light, small and nimble with an adequate power output”. In 2019, Bugatti has unveiled this new, limited edition Chiron Sport ‘110 ans Bugatti’.
It celebrates 110 years since the first ever Bugatti obviously, but takes few cues from that first car. The Bugatti Chiron Sport ‘110 ans Bugatti’ is not light. It is also not very small. Nimble? Actually yeah. Adequate power output? We’d proffer, 1,479bhp is just about adequate.
What you get in place of lightness and smallness is a celebration of Bugatti’s French roots. The special Chiron gets a body and front constructed from carbon fibre, finished in a matt ‘Steel Blue’ (or should that be – narrows eyes, pouts lips – Blue Steel?) paintjob, along with exposed carbon fibre in steel blue carbon. There’s a matt black exhaust system too.
The French tricolour is embellished across the exterior mirrors, across the fuel filler cap, and layered across the underside of that giant rear wing. Even the brake calipers are blue.
This theme is reflected inside too: the headrests, back of the front seats, and the top point of the steering wheel all feature the tricolour. The entire interior is decorated in blue leather, while the trim is Alcantara.
There’s no more power on offer in this exclusive new Chiron – limited to just 20 cars worldwide – but you’d be hard pushed to want more. It’ll still do 0-62mph in less than 2.4secs, and top out at over 261mph. It’s based on the ‘Sport’, which comes with stiffer shocks, modified steering, a new rear diff setup and torque vectoring.
It’s also lighter, and gets a carbon fibre wiper too, and all those changes over the regular Chiron make the Sport version five seconds faster around Nardo. So fairly rapid, then.
The McLaren 600LT has appeared on Hennessey’s radar, and it has been selected for detonation: prepare yourselves for a 1,000bhp+ version of McLaren’s new Sports Series star.
Company boss John Hennessey confirmed to TopGear.com that he does indeed have a 600LT, and is planning on upgrading the mid-engined, twin-turbo supercar to levels that’ll eclipse McLaren’s own Speedtail. Yep, that’s the 1,036bhp, streamliner-GT.
“I decided to buy my 600LT for the same reason I bought a new Ford GT,” John tells us, “to give our team a solid benchmark for our Venom F5.”
Indeed, he wasn’t planning on modifying it at first, but after a first run, decided “it is so good the only thing that it’s asking for is more power”. The idea is to give McLaren’s own £2.1m Speedtail a “run for its money” from 0-150mph, after which point the Speedtail’s lower drag – thanks in part to that super slippery bodywork – would give it the edge.
There are three levels of upgrade planned for the Hennessey 600LT. One with a modest 708bhp upgrade (0-60mph in 2.6s), one with 805bhp (0-60mph 2.4s), and the Big Daddy HPE1000. We’re talking a full 1,001bhp, 865lb ft of torque, 0-60mph in 2.1s and the ability to run the quarter mile in under ten seconds (9.6s) at 156mph
To complete such herculean feats of speed, Hennessey will fit high-flow air filters, a Motec ECU, the company’s own stainless steel turbo headers, upgraded twin-turbos, a high-flow wastegate, a better transmission system, stainless steel exhaust and a better intercooler.
“I think that McLaren is building the best supercars in the world right now,” John told us. Indeed, when TG first tested the 600LT, we said “it generates speed without effort and never stops communicating”.
Lord only knows what one packing similar power to McLaren’s Super Series cars feels like…
By: Vijay Pattni, February 5, 2019
For more cars, visit: https://www.topgear.com/car-news/modified/hennesseys-building-1001bhp-mclaren-600lt
Pictured above: the hybrid, gearbox-less Koenigsegg Regera.
Company founder and boss Christian von Koenigsegg told Top Gear that it’s working on a new hybrid supercar with a pricetag of around €1 million ($1.15 million) to increase its annual sales to a few hundred cars. Oh, and it’ll have an engine without camshafts.
Yes, Koenigsegg is apparently right on the cusp of bringing its innovative Freevalve technology to the market. Instead of using traditional camshafts to open and close valves, a Freevalve engine uses pneumatic actuators. This allows far more control over what the engine does. Theoretically, a Freevalve engine can run on diesel, gas, or alcohol with no mechanical changes—though not at the same time—and can even switch from a two-stroke to a four-stroke cycle. Speaking to Jalopnik in 2014, Koenigsegg said using camshafts was like using a broom to play a piano, while pneumatic actuators are more like using fingers.
“Our ambition is that this car will be completely CO2 neutral,” Koenigsegg told Top Gear. The company is aiming to do so by combining a Freevalve engine with hybrid technology sourced from NEVS. “Given the Freevalve technology, we can actually cold-start the car on pure alcohol, down to -30 degrees Celsius, so there’s no need for any fossil fuel mix then. The idea is to prove to the world that even a combustion engine can be completely CO2 neutral.”
Koenigsegg seems to imply this hybrid will come in addition to the soon-to-arrive successor to the Agera RS. Last year, Koenigsegg told us his company will always aim to offer at least two models. Apparently that means a low-volume supercar and a really low-volume hypercar.
We’ve reached out to Koenigsegg for additional info, and we should know a lot more about the company’s plans in the coming weeks. We’re incredibly excited, and you should be too.
By: Chris Perkins, January 31, 2019
Ahh our American cousins – ever the purveyors of restraint and minimalism. Here’s another example of just that, the Lexani Motorcars 30” Extended Cadillac Escalade Viceroy Edition. Blimey.
That name is almost as long as the car itself, and it pretty much does what it says on the tin too. It’s a Cadillac Escalade that’s been chopped in half and stretched by an extra 30 inches (or 76.2cm for those of you that way inclined).
Lexani, who are well-known for their Instagram-worthy interior upgrades of SUVs and vans, then equip the XL Caddy with everything you could need to turn it into a ‘mobile-office’ – including more screens than your local branch of Dixons.
As well as increasing the length of the car, Lexani will also raise the roof and fit a Rolls Royce style star-filled lining. Despite the extra space though, you’ll only get four of the massive reclining chairs in the back, so just three of your fellow business partners will be able to enjoy the ride.
If you get tired of working, there’ll be no chance of getting bored. The Viceroy Edition has a curved smart TV, ‘multiple’ iPad Pros and a PlayStation 4 on board – although you’ll have to pay extra for the luxury champagne flutes. We wish our office was like that.