Wednesday, November 25, 2009

New Ferrari Store Opens in Athens, Greece, More to Come

Lately, Ferrari stores are popping up like fast-food chains all over the globe. Joining the other Prancing Horse retail locations around the world, including those in Milan, Rome and Venice in Italy, London in the UK, Barcelona in Spain, San Francisco and Miami in the U.S., Macao in China and Dubai in the U.A.E., is the company's first store in Greece, located at the heart of Athens in Kolonaki street.

According to the Italian exotic supercar maker, the Ferrari Store development programme includes plans to bring the number of openings to more than 50 within the next to two years in Europe, America, and the Middle and Far East.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

2010 Dodge Viper ACR to Debut at LA Show, Breaks Lap Record at Laguna Seca

The subtly revised 2010 Dodge Viper ACR, which is set to make its world premiere at next month's Los Angeles Auto Show, has set a new lap record at the Laguna Seca with a time of 1:33.915 as recorded by Motech in-vehicle data recorder (1:33.944'' as unofficially recorded by trackside clock) breaking the previous lap record of 1.35.117 set by a Devon GTX this past August. The 2010 Dodge Viper ACR was piloted by SRT vehicle dynamics engineer, Chris Winkler.

"It was definitely exciting but a somewhat uneventful lap overall from behind the steering wheel," said Winkler. "The Dodge Viper ACR has amazing power and handles like a dream, so following my first practice here last month, I came away pretty confident that we'd be able to set a new record."

In the final year of the Viper's production, the hardcore ACR, (first introduced in 2008), receives a series of upgrades including a shorter fifth gear ratio that changes from 0.74 to 0.80 for improved high-speed acceleration and higher straightaway speed, a new short-throw shifter and a redesigned rear wing to further optimize aerodynamics and improve rear yaw downforce.

Dodge says that these improvements result in an increase in top speed of 4 mph, to 184 mph (296 km/h) for the 2010 model.

There are no other changes for the Viper ACR that is powered by an 8.4-liter V10 engine with 600 horsepower and 560 lb.-ft. of torque, for a 0-60 mph (96km/h) acceleration in under 4 seconds, quarter-mile time in the mid 11-second range and 0-100-0 mph in 11 seconds flat.

Ralph Gilles, President and CEO, Dodge Brand and Senior Vice President, Product Design Office, Chrysler Group LLC, said that the company plans to release several special edition models during the last year of the Viper including a Laguna Seca edition to commemorate the record lap. All in all, around 500 Vipers will be produced in 2010.

Monday, November 23, 2009

New Audi A8 to be Unveiled in Miami on November 30

We first though that Audi would perform the world debut of its new A8 luxury sedan at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September. When that didn't happen most bets were on the LA Auto Show in December. Turns out that Audi had a different idea altogether as the company announced today that the world premiere of its BMW 7-Series and Mercedes-Benz S-Class challenger will take place at the Audi Pavilion, a temporary museum structure in Miami on November 30, in a special setting amidst selected art works from a new exhibition.

Aside from the lightweight aluminum chassis, expect to see a revised engine line-up that will include the firm's new 3.0-liter supercharged V6 petrol unit. The Audi flagship will go on sale worldwide in early 2010.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Porsche Unveils New 911 GT3 R 480HP Racer

Building on the 911 GT3 Cup, Porsche has developed yet another racing car for the 2010 motorsport season. The new 911 GT3 R is based on the international FIA GT3 regulations and its designed to replace the 911 GT3 Cup S. The 'R' model is powered by a larger-displacement four-liter six-cylinder boxer engine that delivers an output of 480-horsepower driving the rear wheels through a six-speed sequential gearbox.

Weighing in at just 1,200 kg or 2,646 lb, Porsche's new racer makes use of the extra-wide body of the 911 GT3 RS street-legal sports car.

The German firm says that it has equipped the car with an anti-lock brake system (ABS), traction control and an electronic throttle with 'blip' function on gearbox down-changes in order to make the new GT3 racer easier for drivers to get used to than its predecessor.

According to Porsche, the new model is more appropriate for the ambitious amateur racing driver rather than purely experienced professionals.

The 911 GT3 R will make its world debut on 14 January 2010 at the Birmingham Motor Show with first cars to be delivered to Customer Teams from spring 2010. The base price of the 911 GT3 R is €279,000 (US$ 415,000) plus local sales tax/VAT.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Audi R10 V10 Supercar: Impressive Concept Study by Design Student

Today's concept study comes to us from Marouane Bembli, a 23-year old industrial design student from Sweden. The futuristic-looking supercar was designed as a 'halo' vehicle for Audi that would in theory, either sit atop or replace altogether the current R8 in the automaker's model range.

"I've designed what I believe will be Audi's new supercar, the R10", Bembli told Car Magazine. "It features a mid-mounted V10 engine and a dry weight of 1200kg. I hope you like it!"

Well, minus the proportions of the passenger cabin area that looks way too small when compared to the rest of the body, we must say that we find the R10 Concept pretty impressive.

Photos: Marouane Bembli , Via: Worldcarfans and Car

Friday, November 20, 2009

JE Design Turns the Wick Up on the 2010 SEAT Leon FR TSI and TDI

The tuning specialists over at JE Design are planning to debut their 2010 Seat Leon FR at this month's Essen Motor Show in Germany. The performance package includes upgrades for both the TSI gasoline and TDI diesel versions of the Spanish hatchback. In its latest form, the 2.0-liter TSI petrol engine delivers 211HP and 280Nm of torque. With JE Design's engine kit that's priced at €1,499, the TSI's output is lifted to 270HP and 335Nm reducing the Leon FR's zero to 100km/h (62mph) sprint time from 7.1 to 6.2 seconds.

The 170HP 2.0-liter diesel engine's gets a nudge to 204HP and 380Nm of torque. This extra muscle helps cut 0-100km/h acceleration from 8.2 to 7.6 seconds. The price for this kit is €1,339 Euros and also includes VAT, assembly and warranty.

The tuner shop offers a set of lowering springs (€159) to bring the car 35mm closer to the ground while there's also an adjustable coilover suspension (€979) that allows the driver to drop the vehicle's height between 15mm and 40mm. A set of 19-inch multispoke alloy wheels shod in 225/35R 19 rubber priced at €2,930 complete the performance tweaks.

For the exterior, JE Design offers a bevy of upgrades including headlamp covers (€89), LED daytime running lights (€299) and its aerodynamics package that comprises of a front spoiler (€279), side skirts (€299), rear apron (€299) and the centre diffuser attachment (€99) plus a four-pipe muffler system (€899) and a pair of Lamborghini-style scissor doors (€1,499).

Finally, the interior can be modded with a leather treatment for the seats, door linings and the centre armrest (€1,599), a two-stage seat heating function (€379) and even a massage system with twelve programmes for the front seats (€429).

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Maserati GranCabrio Priced from £95,630 in the UK

The convertible version of the Maserati GrandTurismo coupe, the GranCabrio, is available for order now in the UK with OTR prices starting from £95,630. The first right-hand drive examples will reach Maserati's showrooms in April 2010. It comes equipped with a folding fabric roof and according to Maserati, it features the longest wheelbase (2,492mm) of any convertible available on the market, meaning that it should offer adequate room for all four passengers.

The GranCabrio is powered by a 4.7-liter V8 delivering 440 HP and 490Nm (362 lb-ft) of torque. All that action is sent to the rear wheels through a ZF automatic six-speed gearbox with Maserati announcing a 0-100km/h (62mph) sprint time of 5.4 seconds and a top speed of 281 km/h or 175 mph.

Buyers can choose from 14 different colors for the body and six different shades for the soft top. In addition to the wide range of options, Maserati also offers a bespoke four-piece leather luggage set which fits perfectly into the boot.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Porsche Panamera Turbo with Engine and Alloy Upgrades by Mcchip

For Porsche Panamera owners looking for a more subtle tuning touch, Germany's Mcchip has wrung a few upgrades for the sport saloon that include a reconfigured ECU, and new tire and alloy wheel combos. With the new software, the Panamera's 4.8-liter turbocharged V8 produces an output of 550 horsepower and 775Nm (571.6 lb-ft) of torque, up from the standard car's 500 HP and 700Nm.

If the Panamera Turbo is equipped with Porsche's Sportchrono package, the V8's torque is bumped to 845Nm (623.3 lb-ft). In both cases, the extra muscle results to an increase of the sport saloon's top speed by 8km/h (5mph) to 311km/h (193mph). The price for the reprogrammed ECU is set at €1,499 (US$2,230).

To complete the package, Mcchip offers Panamera customers two different sets of tires and alloy wheels from Cargraphic.

The first set includes 22-inch rims shod in Continental tires size 265/30 R22 up front and 305/25 R22 at the rear for €7,969 (approx. US$11,900), while the second set comprises of 22-inch alloys wrapped in Dunlop Sport rubber size 265/30 R22 at the front axle and 295/25 R22 at the rear axle for €8,089 (about US$ 12,000).

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Lotus Evora Priced from $73,500 in the States

The all-new Lotus Evora mid-engined coupe will hit U.S. showrooms in early 2010 with prices starting from $73,500, the British automaker announced today. That's 12 grand more than the 320HP Porsche Cayman S ($61,500) but $5,500 less than the entry-level Porsche 911 with RWD and 345HP ($77,800).

The Evora is powered by a Toyota-sourced 3.5-liter V6 producing 276 hp at 6,400 rpm and 258 lb./ft. of torque at 4,700 rpm that drives the rear wheels through a 6-speed manual transmission.

Lotus says that the 2+2 seater is capable of accelerating from 0 to 60 mph (96km/h) in 4.9 seconds and reach a top speed 162mph (260km/h) while also delivering over 30 miles per gallon on the highway.

The U.S. market Evora will come equipped with several standards fetures including bi-xenon headlamps, air-conditioning system, leather seats, Alpine audio system and a flat-bottomed leather and magnesium steering wheel.

Lotus Evora Optional Equipment Pricing

2010 Lotus Evora 2+2
Premium Package
Sport Package
Technology Package
Sports Ratio 6-Speed Gearbox
Premium (IMPRINT) Audio
Reversing Camera
Power Folding Mirrors
Stealth Grey Cast Alloy Wheels
Silver Forged Alloy Wheels
Anthracite Forged Alloy Wheels
Metallic Paint
Lifestyle Paint
Limited Paint