Archives for December 2014

Golf R Pre-Order Details

Golf R 2015 Blue

If you want to be the first on the block for a new Golf R (and given all the love various magazines/tv shows and friends have given it back over in Europe, why would you not), VW are giving you the opportunity to put your $500 down to reserve your spot at the top of the list. The pre-order will go live on on January 8th for the first 500 cars. 

These first Golf R models will be identical: the topline Golf R with DCC® & Nav and the six-speed DSG® dual-clutch automatic transmission. All the cars will be painted in Lapiz Blue Metallic and feature the 292 horsepower 2.0-liter TSI® engine; 19-inch “Cadiz” aluminum-alloy wheels and summer performance tires; 4Motion® all-wheel drive; Bi-Xenon headlights with LED Daytime Running Lights; DCC® adaptive damping system; Park Distance Control; a navigation system; and the Fender® Premium Audio System. The Golf R with DCC & Nav has a starting MSRP of $39,090, plus $820 destination and delivery charge.

These first 500 owners will receive an exclusive, numbered Volkswagen Driver Gear R accessory kit, which consists of:

  • An exclusive, serialized Volkswagen R watch
  • A serialized carbon fiber and stainless steel keychain
  • A serialized and VIN-specific certificate

There will only be 500 of these Volkswagen R accessory kits ever made available to customers, and these will be serialized to match the VINs of the Golf R pre-Order vehicles.

Personally if I was getting one (although I’m pretty sure I’m not) I’d hold off for the 6 months or so to get my hands on the manual version, but I’m sure either version will put plenty of smiles on your face.

Lamborghini (none snow) Driving

02_Lamborghini Track Accademia 2014 in Dubai

Those nice folks at Lamborghini have decided to spread out all of their “drive our cars fast” press releases, so hot on the heels of the snow driving we chatted about last week, the on racetrack version of the program details are released today.

After the three winter events, the track-driving Accademia will visit Barcelona in Spain, before moving on to Imola in Italy and then to the famous F1 Yas Marina circuit in Abu Dhabi. The Sepang circuit in Malaysia will be another stop-off point in Asia, while in the United States the program will visit the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas.

The 2015 Lamborghini Esperienza will visit four continents for the first time. More than 20 fixtures have been arranged at some of the most prestigious circuits in Europe, United States, Asia and Australia. The Lamborghini Esperienza is the first step for anyone wanting to explore the world of Lamborghini. The courses are held at circuits or driving centers suited to the type of program, with the aim of introducing the brand and a first experience of Lamborghini super sports cars.

01_Lamborghini Esperienza 2014 in Baden Baden

“We are very pleased to extend our Accademia and Esperienza program so significantly this year. It is proof of the growing interest in Lamborghini’s super sports cars, among existing and potential customers from all over the world,” commented Giorgio Sanna, Lamborghini’s motorsport coordinator. “These courses offer all participants, whatever their driving experience and their familiarity with Lamborghini, to enjoy our brand and experience our cars.”

If you’re still reading, and you have a pretty large disposable income, the relevant link you need is

2015 NSX – Production Ready!!

Acura NSX Production Model Teaser Image

Those folks over at Honda (or Acura if you live over here in the States) have been pretty silent in recent years over the much anticipated NSX.

Acura NSX Production Model Teaser Image

Instead of going all Toyota and issuing 27 prototypes of a possible future car (Supra anyone), they just drop a couple of teaser photos and a quick video while telling us to stay tuned for January 12th at the Detroit Auto Show.

“After three years of intensive development work we are excited to reveal this next-generation supercar—the Acura NSX—to the world,” said Ted Klaus, chief engineer and global project leader over NSX development. “We’ve developed a human-centered supercar that responds to the will of the driver and that builds upon the NSX heritage.”

Acura NSX Production Model Teaser Image

Personally, I can’t wait – this is going to be a great Detroit Show!

Acura NSX Production Model Teaser Image

Top Gear Teaser Trailer

The kind folks at the BBC released a little teaser of the new Top Gear special coming to BBC 2 in the UK on December 27th and 28th. Not sure when it will make it to BBC America but I’m pretty sure it’s going to be worth the wait.

BMW 6 Series

6 Series Grand Coupe

The world debut of the 2016 BMW 6 Series and BMW M6 will be represented in Detroit by all three body styles in the form of: the new BMW 6 Series Coupe, BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe, and the BMW M6 Convertible.Through three generations, the BMW 6 Series has stood for vehicles meeting the highest standard of handling, comfort, technology, and elegance.  Using state-of-the-art suspension technology, the BMW 6 Series strikes the ideal balance between agility and comfort. The two-door body of the BMW 6 Series Coupe exudes an athletic and elegant aesthetic, while its interior ambience is designed to comfortably immerse four people in the ultimate driving experience. Similarly, the BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe blends the performance and elegance of a coupe with the functionality of a four-door vehicle.  The BMW 6 Series Coupe, Convertible and Gran Coupe will continue in the US in the  650i and 640i models.

Infiniti Sports Coupe Teaser

Infiniti Q60 Concept

Set to be fully released at the Detroit Auto Show next month, Infiniti released a brief teaser of the upcoming Q60 design. It looks promising but I’ll reserve final comment until we get a better look and a few more details. Stay tuned.

New Mini John Cooper Works

Mini John Cooper Works Front

Mini announced the John Cooper Works version of the latest model today, with the news that it would the most powerful produced.

Mini John Cooper Works Side

The power for the new John Cooper Works is delivered by a 2.0- liter 4-cylinder engine that was developed based on the latest generation of power units with MINI TwinPower Turbo Technology. It generates a maximum output of 228 bhp and a maximum torque of 236 ft-lbs., accelerating from 0 to 60 mph in 5.9 econds (Manual: 6.1 seconds). This is an increase in sprint capability of 0.3 seconds compared to the previous generation John Cooper Works.

Mini John Cooper Works Hood Bonnet

Together with the hallmark brand concept comprising front-wheel drive, a low center of gravity, short overhangs, wide track and rigid body structure, the suspension technology has undergone extensive further development for the latest generation of the MINI so as to provide the perfect basis for thrilling race feeling. The new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop is fitted as standard with a sports suspension and benefits from the well-established design principle of a single-joint spring strut axle at front and a multilink rear axle which is unique within the competitive environment, as well as optimized details geared towards high engine and driving performance figures. A standard suspension is also available as a no-cost option.

Mini John Cooper Works Inside Wheel

In order to reduce weight and increase component rigidity, the front axle is fitted with aluminum swivel bearings as well as axle supports and wishbones made of high-strength steel. The model-specific axle kinematics supports an agile turn-in response as well as a precise steering sensation largely free of drive torque. At the rear axle, too, a larger proportion of highly rigid steel types ensure increased stiffness combined with reduced weight. Tube-shaped stabilizers at the front and rear axle, an innovative axle bearing including a hydraulically damped engine mount and triple- path support bearings to decouple the dampers from the body additionally contribute to the fact that the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop retains precise handling as well as optimized ride comfort even in highly sporty situations.

Mini John Cooper Works Inside Seats

Another standard feature of the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop is the high-performance sports brake system developed exclusively for this model. Designed in collaboration with the specialized manufacturer Brembo and precisely harmonized with the properties of the MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop, the fixed caliper disc brakes guarantee a high deceleration performance even when exposed to intensive stress on the race track. The brake calipers are finished in red and bear the manufacturer’s logo. The standard 17-inch John Cooper Works light alloy wheels in Race Spoke design were created exclusively for the John Cooper Works Hardtop, and there are three more wheel design options including 17-inch Joh Cooper Works Track Spoke light alloy wheels in silver or black and 18-inch John Cooper Works Cup Spoke light alloy wheels with two-tone finish.

Mini John Cooper Works Rear Three Quarter

Ford Focus RS Coming to the US

Ford Performance LogoFord will deliver more than 12 new performance vehicles for global enthusiasts through 2020, as the company announced today its new global Ford Performance team.

The vehicles include an all-new Focus RS that will be available to customers in major markets around the world for the first time. It is part of Ford’s plan to deliver even more performance vehicles, parts and accessories for customers around the world more quickly.

“Ford remains committed to innovation through performance,” said Raj Nair, Ford group vice president, Global Product Development. “Our new global Ford Performance team ties together racing, performance vehicles and parts. It will allow us to more quickly introduce products and accessories that meet the needs of customers around the world on-road and on the track.”

Focus RS, which builds on a pedigree of driving excellence dating to the first Ford RS in 1968, was last introduced in 2009. That time around it wasn’t available in the US, but that looks to be changing with the worldwide focus on major markets. Lets hope it’s as good as the Fiesta ST and everyone will be very happy.

Mercedes GLE Coupe

Mercedes GLE CoupeIt appears someone at Mercedes decided that despite the X6 being a bit weird and not much use, it deserved a competitor, and low and behold, the GLE Coupe appears. SUV Coupe’s (or whatever they’re called) hurt my soul – I still haven’t worked out why the X6 exists or why people buy them, but there must be some out there if Mercedes feels the need to match their German counterparts.

Mercedes GLE Coupe - RedThere is even an AMG designated model, and claims that “the GLE Coupe feels like a true sports car”.  There’s plenty of power to go along with the increased heft – a 3.0 liter V6 bi-turbo engine pushing out 362 bhp and 384 lb-ft of torque, and a 9-speed automatic gearbox mated to the 4-matic drivetrain.

Mercedes GLE Coupe interior

Lamborghini Snow Driving

Huracan Winter AccademiaSo what could be better than a day blasting around in a new Lamborghini with a bit of expert tuition? Well, how about a day blasting around in a new Lamborghini in the snow? Lamborghini have just announced it’s first every US based winter driving school – the 2015 Winter Accademia at Aspen/Snowmass will provide driving enthusiasts and brand aficionados an opportunity to push exclusive Lamborghini cars and themselves to the limit.

Aventador Winter Accademia

For those who crave the opportunity (and have the $6k to fund this very fine weekend), the Lamborghini Winter Accademia program, which takes place February 5-7 and 6-8, 2015 in Aspen/Snowmass, Colorado, will allow enthusiasts to experience the all-wheel-drive supremacy of the Aventador LP 700-4 as well as the Huracán LP 610-4 on ice and snow.