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Archive for the ‘rumors’ Category

PostHeaderIcon How Will Additional Workforce Affect the 2020 Corvette C8 Production?

Just before starting the production of the Corvette C7 in 2013, GM added 150 new jobs at its Bowling Green Corvette plant. That number rose to 250 very next year. Right now, as the C7 spends its last days on the Bowling Green production lines, GM announced that it would add a new workforce of 400 workers just before the mid-engine 2020 Corvette C8 production starts later in 2019. The move of adding more jobs is a commonality with the introduction of the new cars. Especially ones that make a significant departure in terms of design and underlying architecture compared to its predecessors. The C7 was a significant departure compared to the C6. Actually, it shared only two parts with it – the cabin filter and the rear latch for the removable roof panel. On the other hand, I feel that the C8 will share more with the C7 despite such a profound change in its form. The added complexity of the new design could be a part of the reason for the significant workforce increase.

PostHeaderIcon All-New Land Rover Defender Debuts This September, Goes On Sale In 2020

After years of working on it, Land Rover is going to reveal an all-new Defender this year. The old Defender was phased out in 2016 mainly due to the fact that it did not meet safety standards for both occupants and pedestrians – they couldn’t even equip the old one with airbags, so a ground-up redesign was decided.

PostHeaderIcon The Next-Gen R36 Nissan GT-R Won’t Be Here for a While, But That’s a Good Thing

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Nissan is currently celebrating five decades of the GT-R with the debut of the 2020 GT-R 50th Edition at the 2019 New York Auto Show. While we’re happy to see Nissan paying tribute to one of the greatest Japanese sports cars of all time, you’d be forgiven for saying the automaker is dragging its feet when it comes to introducing a new generation for Godzilla. However, recent comments made by a few folks high in the Nissan corporate food chain seem to suggest that the company is indeed working to pin down exactly what the R36 will bring to the table, including electric power options, handling upgrades, and possibly even self-driving capability.

PostHeaderIcon Ford’s Latest Patent Filing Hints at the Name of the New Baby Bronco

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The Ford Bronco is the next hot thing in the world of SUVs. Relying on the cache built up by the original Bronco that was discontinued in 1996, the new model is tipped to sell in big numbers if Ford gets the recipe right and revives an off-roader revered for its no-nonsense attitude. We’re now hearing that the name ’Scout,’ along with the ’Bronco Scout’ moniker are in the process of being trademarked by Ford through the United States Patent and Trademark Office. The ’Scout’ name can either refer to the upcoming ’Baby Bronco’ or just a trim level of the Bronco itself.

Information has been thin regarding the 2021 Ford Bronco, which is set to go into production this year. We’ve heard a lot of rumors, but few can be checked and considered as facts. For instance, we’ve heard that the Bronco will come with either two or four doors and a removable soft top option will be available as Ford plans to take on the Jeep Wrangler – a rumor backed by these patent fillings. We also reported that the 2019 Ford Ranger and the 2021 Ford Bronco will sport the same underpinnings and that the Bronco might be fitted with a seven-speed manual after all. Let’s let the rumor mill spin a bit more and talk about the Scout.

PostHeaderIcon Leaked Images Show Off the 2021 Ford Ranger Long Before Its Scheduled Debut

Wait, what? It’s barely been a year since the fourth-generation Ranger, that marks the nameplate’s return to the North American market, was shown at the Detroit Auto Show and now we get to see the next one? Apparently, this is actually true, and you are looking at a car that you shouldn’t have seen for at least two more years, the fifth-generation Ranger that will share its platform with the upcoming Amarok, both models destined for the European and African markets.

When manufacturers are preparing to launch a new vehicle, they go about their business in a tried and tested way. They either try to take the test mules out on the road either in more secluded areas where there’s less of a likelihood that someone with a camera, hiding in a bush, might be tracking down their movements or, when city testing or highway testing are on order, they wrap the vehicle in question in as odd a camouflage pattern as possible. The point of the camo is to deter those that try to pick out the new model’s key aesthetic features that differentiate it from the older one or, in case of brand-new standalone models, to make it hard for folks to figure out whether or not that model is bringing with it a new design language or not. Basically, most often, it’s a game of hiding your hand in plain sight.

This time, though, it seems like an Australian automotive outlet got its hands on some leaked images. We know that the T6 generation of the Ranger built for international markets (although it did debut in the U.S. as well in 2018) was conceived by Ford Australia and, most probably, the engineers Down Under are now working on the upcoming international model because the T6 has been around since 2011 although it received a facelift in 2015. Obviously, with the T6 Ranger arriving in the U.S. last year and selling well, don’t expect what you see in these pictures to spot rolling down American roads pretty soon.

PostHeaderIcon A Hotter Version of The Genesis G70 Sounds Spicy, Doesn’t It?

The Genesis G70 is arguably the best compact luxury sedan on the market today, and if new rumors have any weight to them, the G70 could give birth to a hotter offspring in the near future. Neither Hyundai nor Genesis have confirmed plans to build a performance-spec G70, but Hyundai’s head product planner, Mike O’Brien, dropped an interesting hint at the 2019 North American International Auto Show that suggests that a high-performance version of the G70 could be in the works. If that happens, the BMW M3s and Mercedes-AMG C63s of the world could have a new challenger to worry about sooner than later.

PostHeaderIcon Is this Proof that Cadillac Is Making a Mid-Engined Sports Car?

It’s no longer a mystery that GM is working on a mid-engined Chevrolet Corvette. The sports car has been spotted testing numerous times, we’ve seen sketches of the interior, plans of the engine, and even leaked pricing information. But General Motors may be hiding a vehicle based on the upcoming C8-generation Corvette: a mid-engined Cadillac.

PostHeaderIcon Mid-Engined Chevrolet Corvette C8 Could Cost $170,000

Arguably the hottest and most discussed car to be unveiled in 2019, the Chevy Corvette C8 remains a mystery, with very little official information to run by as of November. Thankfully, the rumor has provided us some data in recent months and now it’s back with pricing information, placing the mid-engined sports car at $169,900 before options.

PostHeaderIcon Silly Ford Thinks it Can Take On the Porsche Panamera With a Four-Door, V-8 Mustang

Yes, the Mustang will remain the only car the Blue Oval will offer on U.S. soil, but the legendary pony car might spawn a number of models, including a four-door coupe-style sedan that aims to match Audi’s A7 or Mercedes-Benz’s CLS Class.

We’ve heard just about anything that could’ve been heard about the upcoming Mustang-styled crossover. But during that same meeting with the dealers that Ford organized, the company threw in the mix some hints towards a potential Mustang sedan that could be outfitted with a turbocharged V-8 engine.

Keep reading to learn more about the rumored Mustang sedan.

PostHeaderIcon Bugatti Could Flip the Super Luxury SUV Market If It Green Lights an SUV

Just when you thought the super-luxury SUV market calmed down with Lamborghini, Bentley, and Rolls-Royce in the fold, Bugatti could enter the fray and turn the whole segment upside down. That’s the word that came out from no less than Bugatti’s own president, Stephan Winkelmann, at the Paris Motor Show. No confirmation has been made on the matter, but Bugatti is legitimately thinking about expanding its lineup, and an SUV reportedly has the inside track on getting greenlit if the company decides to give the Chiron hypercar a stablemate.

PostHeaderIcon Next Mercedes-AMG A45 Coming With Drift Mode and Over 400 Horsepower

Mercedes is working on an all-new A45 AMG model to sit at the top of its A-Class lineup, and even though it’s set to debut sometime next year, we’re already learning new details about it – exciting details regarding how it will be very different from (and just plain better than) the outgoing A45 AMG.

PostHeaderIcon Aston Martin Valkyrie Could Come with the World’s Most Powerful Naturally-Aspirated Engine!

The Aston Martin Valkyrie has been a surprise element from a long time. This ambitious project from the British marque is essentially a road-legal version of a Le Mans prototype racer. The $3.3 million hypercar has been teased on multiple occasions and always left us so close to the real thing. Now, Cosworth has confirmed that the Valkyrie will have the world’s most powerful N/A engine ever equipped in a street-legal car. The engine supplier said that the Valkyrie will be offered with an all-atmosphere V-12 unit producing around 1,100 horsepower!

PostHeaderIcon Lamborghini Urus Hybrid Could Generate 700 Horsepower!

The Lamborghini Urus, the company’s first SUV since 1993, was just unveiled at the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show, and the automotive world is already talking about future versions of the vehicle. A hybrid model has been in the rumor mill for at least a year now, but a new report claims that an electrified version of the Urus could arrive before the end of the decade. Its drivetrain is obviously a mystery at this point, but word has it that the plug-in hybrid could borrow its drivetrain from the Porsche Panamera. With the Urus using the same underpinnings as the sedan, this move would make a lot of sense, but the big deal here is that the Urus PHEV will probably end up being more powerful than the gasoline-only version.

Specifically, the range-topping Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid, which pairs a turbocharged, 4.0-liter, V-8 and an electric motor, comes with a whopping 680 horsepower and 626 pound-feet of twist on tap. That’s 30 horses more than the Urus. And, knowing Lambo, it may want a bit more power, so a 700-horsepower rating is very likely. The extra oomph will make the hybrid quicker than the standard model by at least two tenths, if not more. On top of that, it will return better fuel economy and gain the ability to run on electricity alone, albeit for less than 40 miles. Emissions will drop too, which will make the Urus a bit more affordable in China, one of Lambo’s most important markets.

There’s no specific word as to when the Urus plug-in hybrid may arrive, but with the Panamera’s drivetrain already available, it could happen as soon as late 2018.

References

Lamborghini Urus


2019 Lamborghini Urus - image 749811

Read our full review on the 2019 Lamborghini Urus.


2012 Lamborghini Urus - image 451044

Read our full review on the Lamborghini Urus Concept.


1986 - 1993 Lamborghini LM002 - image 737272

Read our full review on the 1986-1993 Lamborghini LM002.

PostHeaderIcon Lamborghini Urus Hybrid Could Generate 700 Horsepower!

The Lamborghini Urus, the company’s first SUV since 1993, was just unveiled at the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show, and the automotive world is already talking about future versions of the vehicle. A hybrid model has been in the rumor mill for at least a year now, but a new report claims that an electrified version of the Urus could arrive before the end of the decade. Its drivetrain is obviously a mystery at this point, but word has it that the plug-in hybrid could borrow its drivetrain from the Porsche Panamera. With the Urus using the same underpinnings as the sedan, this move would make a lot of sense, but the big deal here is that the Urus PHEV will probably end up being more powerful than the gasoline-only version.

Specifically, the range-topping Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid, which pairs a turbocharged, 4.0-liter, V-8 and an electric motor, comes with a whopping 680 horsepower and 626 pound-feet of twist on tap. That’s 30 horses more than the Urus. And, knowing Lambo, it may want a bit more power, so a 700-horsepower rating is very likely. The extra oomph will make the hybrid quicker than the standard model by at least two tenths, if not more. On top of that, it will return better fuel economy and gain the ability to run on electricity alone, albeit for less than 40 miles. Emissions will drop too, which will make the Urus a bit more affordable in China, one of Lambo’s most important markets.

There’s no specific word as to when the Urus plug-in hybrid may arrive, but with the Panamera’s drivetrain already available, it could happen as soon as late 2018.

References

Lamborghini Urus


2019 Lamborghini Urus - image 749811

Read our full review on the 2019 Lamborghini Urus.


2012 Lamborghini Urus - image 451044

Read our full review on the Lamborghini Urus Concept.


1986 - 1993 Lamborghini LM002 - image 737272

Read our full review on the 1986-1993 Lamborghini LM002.

PostHeaderIcon Volkswagen Beetle to Live On as RWD Electric Car

There’s been a lot of talk about Volkswagen looking to drop the Beetle nameplate in the future. While rumors from a couple of years ago quoted slow sales and Volkswagen’s plans to reduce manufacturing costs, newer reports claim that the “Dieselgate” scandal will force the company to axe the Beetle alongside the Scirocco. The brand has yet to confirm any of this, but a more recent report says that the Beetle may have a chance to survive as an all-electric car.

That’s the word from Autocar, which claims that Volkswagen is “actively considering plans for an electric, rear-wheel-drive successor to today’s Beetle” as part of its range of zero-emissions models based on its new MEB platform. More specifically, the new Beetle will be a system model to the company’s upcoming small electric van, which was previewed by the ID Buzz concept at the Detroit Motor Show. The electric Beetle will also be rear-wheel-drive, according to Volkswagen chairman Herbert Diess.

“If we wanted to do a Beetle, electrically it would be much better than today’s model, much closer to history, because it could be rear-wheel drive,” he said, adding that the MEB platform provides the perfect basis for emotional cars like the Beetle and Microbus. Volkswagen is reportedly also considering open-top models such as the Kubelwagen and the Buggy, so we may get a full lineup of electric cars that revive the company’s most iconic vehicles. On the flipside, Diess said that a firm decision on the Beetle’s successor has yet to be made.

Introduced in 1938, the original Beetle was produced in Germany until 1978, but assembly continued in other countries, with the Mexican plant rolling out vehicles until as recent as 2003. The New Beetle was launched in 1997 and redesigned in 2011.

References

Volkswagen Beetle


2015 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible 1.8T - Driven - image 599665

Read our full review on the 2015 Volkswagen Beetle.



Read more Volkswagen news.

PostHeaderIcon Can The Toyota R-Tuned C-HR Beat The Honda Civic Type R’s FWD Lap Record At The Nurburgring?

2017 Toyota C-HR R-Tuned Concept

When you build a custom version of an SUV and later on claim it to be the “fastest of its kind,” the rationale after that is to go to a race track and validate your boasts. To his credit, that’s what Dan Gardner of Dan Gardner Spec wants to do with the race-spec, 600-horsepower Toyota C-HR, provided that Toyota allows him to do it.

At the moment, Gardner says that the Japanese automaker has no plans for the R-Tuned C-HR past its SEMA showcase so it’s anybody’s guess where the power-packed SUV will show up next. That said, if Gardner had his way, it’d be at the Nurburgring where it can properly stretch its legs and make a run at the current FWD lap record of the Honda Civic Type R that the Honda hot hatch set in April 2017 with a time of 7:43.8. Not only does Gardner believe that the R-Tuned C-HR can beat the Civic Type R’s lap time, but he actually has “no doubt” that it can do it if given the opportunity to do so. That’s not to say that it can take the record away from the Civic Type R. The R-Tuned C-HR isn’t a production car so it wouldn’t be eligible for the record to begin with. But Gardner still wants to do it, if only to let the world know that there’s truth to his “fastest SUV” claims. Considering what amount of aftermarket tuning the C-HR was subjected to, I’m prepared to believe him regardless of whether or not the SUV does hit the ‘Ring.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

The R-Tuned C-HR is not a car you’d want to mess with


2017 Toyota C-HR R-Tuned - image 741807

On the surface, the Toyota R-Tuned C-HR has a chance to not only break the Honda Civic Type R’s record but to smash it completely to smithereens. It certainly doesn’t look like a standard C-HR anymore. It’s dripping from head to toe with aerodynamic bits. It’s been stripped down so that non-essential items don’t add unnecessary weight. It’s even been tuned to produce 600 horsepower, all thanks to the addition of a DG-Spec Garrett turbo compressor that’s responsible for breathing an extra 23 psi into the cylinders. The result is an SUV that packs more power than a Porsche 911 Turbo S.

Speaking of the Porsche 911, the R-Tuned C-HR proved its prowess during a recent run at Willow Springs, where it posted a lap time of 1:25.22. That’s a faster time around the track than the Porsche 911 GT3 and the Lamborghini Aventador.

Clearly, Gardner and his crew at Dan Gardner Spec built a powerhouse in the R-Tuned C-HR. It’s even more impressive when you consider just how much work the tuning house put into turning it into what Gardner refers to as a “supercar killer.” More than just the significant increase in power, Dan Gardner Spec also worked on the SUV’s handling characteristics, which is arguably one of its most weakest points. All told, the tuning shop spent close to 10,000 hours to complete the transformation and, for what it’s worth, the result validated all those hours spent turning the otherwise mundane C-HR into a legitimate powerhouse on wheels.

Can it beat the Honda Civic Type R’s record lap time in the ‘Ring?


2017 Toyota C-HR R-Tuned - image 741806

I firmly believe that it can, but that’s just my opinion of it. And, I’m certainly not dismissing the Civic Type R either. The hot hatch doesn’t just own the Nurburgring lap time record for a FWD car. It also holds that same title in some of the world’s most notable race tracks, including Silverstone, Spa, Monza, Estoril, and the Hungaroring.

Gardner’s firm started the build late last year, and he estimated that it took a total of around 10,000 hours. Although there are no plans for the C-HR R-Tuned after SEMA, Gardner said he would love to take the car to the Nordschleife for a lap record bid there.

But, I’m taking Dan Gardner’s side on this one. I think the R-Tuned C-HR has the mechanical and technical chops to post a faster lap time than the Civic Type R. I don’t have any facts to back up my position, just a strong belief that an SUV that’s as stripped down as the Toyota with close to double the power output will be able to lap the Nurburgring quicker than the Civic Type R’s record lap for an FWD machine.

Here’s to hoping that Toyota gives it the green light to make the trip to the ‘Ring. I’d love to be proven right – or wrong.

References

Toyota C-HR


2017 Toyota C-HR R-Tuned - image 741805

Read our full review on the 2017 Toyota C-HR R-Tuned.

Honda Civic


2017 Honda Civic Type R - image 719374

Read our full review on the 2017 Honda Civic Type R.

PostHeaderIcon Scoop: Is the Nissan Xterra in for a resurgence?

After running for a decade and a half, Toyota stopped the Xterra’s production in 2015; the obvious reason being dwindling sales. While this mid-size SUV came with a body-on-frame design and impressive off-road skills, it all came at the cost of good city and highway driving. But, rumor has it that the Renault Nissan Mitsubishi alliance is planning to revive the Xterra again at the 2018 Beijing Motor Show.

While the 4Runner is not precisely a new model, the 2018 Jeep Wrangler sure is. With one veteran being too long in the tooth, the Xterra would try to foil the Wrangler’s monopoly in the mid-sized SUV segment. Ford has thrown its hat in as well with the Bronco, but its planned 2020 launch is still far away.

Author’s Take

The new generation today is looking for SUV’s that not only provide a relaxed Point A to Point B drive but also some off-roading fun for the weekends. While the Xterra excelled at the latter, comfortable rides on smooth terrain were not its cup of tea. And, when coupled with poor fuel efficiency, the Xterra had to be laid to rest.
But now, when its chief rivals – the Jeep Wrangler and Toyota 4Runner – are seeing the sales rise steadily, Nissan is planning a comeback to enjoy its share of the pie. Hopefully, this time Nissan gets the right blend of both, along with an engine that’s not so thirsty and gives cut-throat competition to its competitors.

References

Nissan Xterra


2014 Nissan Xterra - image 542025

Read our full review on the2014 Nissan Xterra.

Jeep Wrangler


2018 Jeep Wrangler - image 669920

Read our full speculative review on the 2018 Jeep Wrangler.

Toyota 4Runner


2015 Toyota 4Runner - Driven - image 658689

Read our full driven review on the 2015 Toyota 4Runner.

PostHeaderIcon Hanging in the Balance: Nissan Shows Confusion, Uncertainty over the Next Z-Car

We all want to know about the next Z-car, but Phillip Klein – Nissan’s Chief Planning Officer – couldn’t even give us a slight glimmer of hope last week during the Tokyo Auto Show. Long story short: It sounds like a new Z-Car may not happen and, even if it does, it will be a long time before we see it.

Let’s face it; sports cars are freaking awesome, but they all have expiration dates. Most automakers understand this – there’s a reason cars like the Porsche 911 and Chevy Corvette have been through more generations than you can count on one hand. Automakers like Mitsubishi, and Nissan, apparently, seem to have missed that memo, though. If you remember right, Mitsubishi let the Lancer go one for a decade without an update, and then let it die a slow, miserable death. Well, as it turns out, Nissan could very well do the same with the Z-car. When the Tokyo Auto Show kicked off, we were expecting to the Nissan 390Z concept, but instead, all we got was an executive that refused to even confirm the car exists let alone offer up information of when the next production Z will actually arrive.

“There’s a lot of passion behind this vehicle…. At the same time, it’s a segment that’s gradually declining, making the case more difficult. We have no intention to quit excitement, but we’re going to make it happen in different ways,” said Klein. Design Chief, Alfonso Albaisa, got in on it on it too, saying, “I can say we don’t have a fixed thing yet… but how can we be completely blind to the importance of that name to the company? Maybe you can feel that I love these cars… but I can’t say too much, or I’ll be taking a train home [instead of my company car]!”

So, at this point, the 370Z is almost a decade old, and Nissan isn’t even sure what to do about a successor. It has said that the GT-R is a better halo car, so the GT-R is safe for now, but perhaps if the brand showed the Z-car some love, it might experience better sales as well. After all, it’s a super senior as far as car generations go. As I said about Mitsubishi and the Lancer – you can’t not bring about something fresh and then use declining sales as a good reason to let it die a pitiful death. But, then again, rumor has it that Nissan is going to take the same approach Mitsubishi did with the Eclipse name. Keep reading to learn more about what could happen to the Z name…

The Stench of Stupid Just Keeps Getting Stronger


2016 Nissan Gripz Concept - image 646230
“The Nissan Gripz is a model that was supposedly modeled after the 240Z”

So, here’s the deal. Mitsubishi decided to scrap the Eclipse after the fourth generation because, well, consumers were blind to it. We could argue all day long about why they were blind to it, but it had to do with its horrible design, piss poor engineering, the fact that it was still based on the Galant, and it was just a bit too large. But, that’s just my opinion, and I’m starting to get off topic. The point is that Mitsubishi has brought back the Eclipse name, but it has done so on an SUV. Why? Because everyone is buying them up like they are the next best thing since the invention of condoms. Fast forward to today and poke your head in the boardroom at Nissan, and I bet you anything you’ll hear them talking about why the next vehicle wearing a Z-badge will be a dumb SUV or Crossover. Want evidence? Well, they already hinted at it a couple of years ago with the Nissan Gripz, a model that was supposedly modeled after the 240Z. And, let’s not forget that at least one outlet heard from an “insider” that the next Z will be a “small, sporty crossover about the size of the current Juke.” Ugh…

So, why not shift yet another SUV into production and throw a well-known badge on it. Mitsubishi seems to think it’ll work with the Eclipse Cross, so it can work for the Nissan Z too, right? I’m not so sure, folks. I have a feeling Nissan is going to take this path, and everyone who loved the Z cars for what they were (and rightfully so) is going to turn their backs and walk away because the Z badge deserves better than that. The world has enough crossovers and, if Nissan would not let the current model live longer than my grandmother, consumers might be interested in it again.
I don’t know, though. Maybe I’m just tired of seeing awesome names die needlessly and automakers try to hang onto the fame that those names once garnered by using them for something else. What do you guys think? Would you buy a new Z-badged crossover, or should Nissan usher in a new RWD coupe as a successor? Or, should they just kill off the car altogether and let the GT-R do all of the work in this niche? Let us know in the comments section below.

References

Nissan Z


2018 Nissan Z - image 660951

Read our full speculative review on the 2019 Nissan Z.

Nissan 370Z


2009 - 2017 Nissan 370Z - image 420367

Read our full review on the 2017 Nissan 370Z.


2016 Nissan Gripz Concept - image 646366

Read our full review on the 2016 Nissan Gripz Concept.

PostHeaderIcon Thoughts of A Lexus LFA Successor has us Wondering: Can Dreams Come True?

Everyone dreams, including those tasked with keeping an automotive company running at full speed. Never more has that been evident than when it comes to the dreams of Lexus President, Yoshihiro Sawa, who recently told Autocar that he can’t “rule out” a spiritual successor to the Lexus LFA, but for now it remains “just a dream.” That, ladies and gentlemen, has a begging the question: Do dreams come true?

Well, the truth is, they do…sometimes – most of us have experienced moments of déjà vu (or as some would call it, a “glitch in the matrix”) and there are many reports of people dreaming about something that eventually happens days, months, or years later. Whether or not that means we’ll see a successor for the Lexus LFA is a question that has been etched in our minds since the model technically went off sale back in 2012, just a few years after it stole the show at the 2009 Tokyo Motor Show. And, even though Lexus has “other priorities for now,” the fact remains that Mr. Sawa certainly dreams of a successor. That may not mean that it will happen tomorrow or even in 2020, but it is a glimmer of hope for those of us who actually got to spend some personal time with the $375,000 Japanese-built supercar.

Want to take a trip down memory lane? Click “Continue Reading” to hear about why an LFA successor isn’t on the table right now, see some cool videos, and learn more about the famous, Japanese-built supercar that stole our hearts back in 2009.

SUVs… That’s Why


2016 Lexus UX Concept - image 690251
“Lexus has to keep up with the Jones’, and that means it needs to build SUVs”

According to Autocar, Sawa has expressed a generalized reason why there is no LFA successor in the works right now: “I really want to do an LFA successor, and it is important to have dreams, but for now it is a very complicated situation. It’s a very difficult question to answer as I would like to do it, but we have other priorities for now.”

Those other priorities, folks, lies in the fact that Lexus has to keep up with the Jones’, and that means it needs to build SUVs because everyone is still buying them up like they are the best thing to hit the market since toilet paper. The biggest thing that Lexus is working on now is the Lexus UX – a model that will compete against the Germans and take on models like the Audi Q3, Mercedes GLA, and the BMW X1. And, Lexus wants to take on the Range Rover Sport as well, so it needs a seven-seater that will likely be formed out of the versatile and luxurious Lexus RX. So, with that in mind, an LFA successor probably won’t come to be until either the SUV craze dies down, and automakers are sent scrambling to jump on the bandwagon of the next trend or until Lexus has a full lineup of SUVs and enough extra capital to build another six-figure supercar. Sure, that kind of sucks because that could take a long time, but hey – there’s always Sawa’s dream and, as we all know, sometimes dreams come true.

The LFA in a Nutshell


Thoughts of A Lexus LFA Successor has us Wondering: Can Dreams Come True? - image 328629
“It was high-revving with a redline cutoff at 9,000 rpm and could hit the 60-mph sprint in just 2.6 seconds on the way to an electronically limited speed of 202 mph.”

To put it simply, the Lexus LFA was the cream of the crop in 2009 when it debuted at the Tokyo Auto Show. It featured carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) construction for not only the chassis but the body as well. It was developed from the ground up by a very small team, with nothing to go on but the hopes and dreams of the engineers involved. The project started in 2000 and didn’t debut until 2009, so it took around eight years for Lexus to perfect its supercar. And, as Lexus put it, they “created the most driver-oriented car they possibly could.” All in all, the car was built in just 500 examples, and as a 2011 model, it went off sale in 2012. It was powered by a 4.8-liter V-10 that pushed out an incredible-for-the-time 552 horsepower and 354 pound-feet of torque. It was high-revving with a redline cutoff at 9,000 rpm and could hit the 60-mph sprint in just 2.6 seconds on the way to an electronically limited speed of 202 mph.

Unfortunately, the LFA is pretty much a collectors car now, with used examples rarely showing up for sale. And, even if you find one, you’ll surely be asked to pay more than the original $375,000 asking price. But, for what it’s worth, there are still a few examples sitting around various U.S. dealers that are listed as new. One was even sold earlier in 2017. Of course, those are being held onto by the dealers that own them, so chances are, you’ll really pay a pretty penny if you want them to come up off them.

Lexus LFA Specs


Thoughts of A Lexus LFA Successor has us Wondering: Can Dreams Come True? - image 328619
Engine Type 72° V10, aluminum block and heads, port fuel injection with 10 independently controlled throttle bodies (one per cylinder)
Displacement 4.8 liters (292.914 cubic inches)
Valvetrain Four cam, four valves per cylinder, with dual Variable Valve Timing with intelligence (VVTi)
Compression Ratio 12.0:1
Horsepower 552 HP @ 8,700 RPM
Torque 354 LB-FT @ 7,800 RPM
Redline 9,000 RPM
0-60 MPH Acceleration 3.6 seconds
Top Track Speed (electronically limited) 202 mph
EPA Fuel Economy Ratings (city/highway/combined) 11/16/12

Fun LFA Videos

References

Lexus LFA


2011 Lexus LF-A - image 328612

Read our full review on the 2011 Lexus LFA.


2018 Lexus LC Structural Blue Edition - image 737618

Read more Lexus news.

PostHeaderIcon Does This Leaked Window Sticker Confirm the 2018 Ford Mustang GT Bullitt?

The Internet went ablaze last February when Ford released a behind-the-scenes video of a TV commercial shoot with Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson that (purposefully?) might have leaked an upcoming iteration of the iconic Mustang Bullitt. Now, fan forum site Mustang6g.com claims an anonymous source gave them a window sticker for a mock build of a 2018 Ford Mustang GT Bullitt. While its authenticity can’t be confirmed, the build sheet seems to have all the right parts needed for a Bullitt-edition Mustang.

For those living under a rock, Ford built two generations of special-edition Bullitt Mustangs to pay homage to the 1968 Mustang GT driven by Steve McQueen in the classic cop film Bullitt of that same year. The movie’s greatest feature is a drawn-out car chase between the bad guys in a black 1968 Dodge Charger R/T and the hero, Frank Bullitt, in his Dark Highland Green Mustang GT Fastback. The movie car had a unique appearance, which Ford copied for the 2001-2002 Mustang GT Bullitt edition and again on the 2008-2009 version. The cars all featured Torq-Thrust wheels, removed badges, a plain black grille, and that Highland Green paint, though the special edition models were offered with other dark colors, too. Ford had great success with the Bullitt Mustangs, so it wouldn’t be surprising to see yet another version. As for what the 2018 special edition might hold, check the full photo and description below.

Continue reading for more information.

Is this the next Bullitt?

Ford has never shied away from special editions of its popular models and that hasn’t changed with the latest-generation Mustang. For 2018, the Mustang is undergoing a mid-cycle refresh, gaining a slightly more aggressive face, some new styling out back, and a fully digital gauge cluster. Mechanical updates include a reworked 5.0-liter V-8 with both direct and port fuel injection with an active exhaust system, an available magnetic suspension system, Ford’s new 10-speed automatic transmission, a revised six-speed manual transmission, and the discontinuation of a V-6 option (leaving only the EcoBoost turbo-four and V-8).

As seen at three-minute, 12-second mark into the behind-the-scenes video, a dark-green Mustang is clearly visible in the background. The car features the same style Bullitt badge between the taillights and dark, five-spoke wheels. Of course, Ford would not comment on the rendering, so the partial image is all we had to go on. That’s changed now.

The leaked window sticker, technically called a Monroney, offers a glimpse at what Ford could be planning. The important points include the paint color – Highland Green Metallic – which is awful close to the original Dark Highland Green color used on the previous cars. Then there’s the rear window louvers and faux gas cap options in the exterior section. Looking deeper, Mustang6g says the VIN listed actually belongs to a 2009 Mustang Bullitt, both giving credence to this Monroney belonging to a pre-production mock build and being a Bullitt edition. The rest of the Monroney isn’t very telling, leaving all but the final price of $56,080 to the imagination. There isn’t a “Bullitt Edition” package or anything listed. In fact, the Bullitt name doesn’t even appear on the build sheet.

That does make it easier to believe Mike Levine, Ford’s North American Product Communications Manager, who told Motor Authority the Monroney is not authentic. Then again, it is Levine’s job to control the flow of information from Ford to the general public.


Does This Leaked Window Sticker Confirm the 2018 Ford Mustang GT Bullitt? - image 736500
“2018 marks the 50th anniversary of the 1968 Bullitt film.”

The car’s price seems a bit off, too. The 2018 Mustang GT starts at $35,095. At $56,080, that’s a $20,985 mark-up over the standard GT. The Monroney doesn’t explain this with a ton of optional extras or packages (like say, the Bullitt Edition), making the price seem rather unwarranted. Perhaps the price isn’t correct for the car since this Monroney is supposedly for a mock build.

While these surface-level clues lead to confusion, a more solid lead is found by thinking big. See, 2018 marks the 50th anniversary of the 1968 Bullitt film. What better way to pay homage to the Hollywood classic while spurring consumer awareness (and hopefully sales) of a special-edition Mustang? After all, Ford has seen great success with the Bullitt editions in the past and the timing for a new version couldn’t be better.

What do you think? Is Ford preparing a 2018 Mustang GT Bullitt edition? Is this all hype and hearsay? Let us know in the comments below.

References

Ford Mustang Bullitt


2008 Ford Mustang Bullitt - image 211591

Read our full review on the 2008 Ford Mustang Bullitt.


2018 Ford Mustang - image 702950

Read our full review on the 2018 Ford Mustang.

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