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K1 - TR2 Triumph SFI-1 Auto Racing Suit - Driving Nomex Style Fire SFI 3.2A/1
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Archive for the ‘sedan’ Category

PostHeaderIcon Did They Steal? Faraday Future Sues Former Execs for Trade Secret Theft

Faraday Future is in the headlines again. The beleaguered electric carmaker has filed a lawsuit against a startup company founded by former executives that used to work for the company. The lawsuit specifically accuses former Faraday CFO Stefan Krause and CTO Ulrich Kranz of stealing trade secrets and poaching talent away from the company. Krause and Kranz eventually started Evelozcity Inc., a company that touts itself as an electric vehicle manufacturer that’s looking to address the “future needs of urban mobility.” Sound familiar?


Did They Steal? Faraday Future Sues Former Execs for Trade Secret Theft - image 700027
“The lawsuit accuses Krause and Kranz of stealing trade secrets and soliciting 20 former employees to join a startup electric car company that would compete against Faraday Future.”

Will there come a day when we’ll actually receive some good news come out of Faraday Future? It seems so long ago that something like it has happened. The lawsuit, which was filed at the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, accuses Krause and Kranz of stealing trade secrets and soliciting 20 former employees to join a startup electric car company that would compete against Faraday Future.

According to the complaint, employees who left Faraday to join Evelozcity were encouraged to get as much information as they could from the company they were leaving. This included downloading thousands of confidential documents and so-called “trade secrets,” ranging from vendor databases to technical documents.

Not surprisingly, Evelozcity responded to the complaint by debunking all of its claims. “This complaint continues Faraday’s pattern of hurling false and inflammatory accusations against us,” the new startup said in a statement. “We will respond to the many recklessly inaccurate allegations in this desperate lawsuit at the appropriate time.”


Did They Steal? Faraday Future Sues Former Execs for Trade Secret Theft - image 700023
“Evelozcity was incorporated on or around Nov. 7, a day after Krause asked Faraday’s then-head of human resources to back-date his resignation by two weeks”

Faraday Future’s status as a sinking ship is well-documented, so it wasn’t a shock when its CFO and CTO left the company to look for greener pastures. Krause, in particular, didn’t last long in Faraday. He was hired in March 2017 to help raise funding and oversee its finances as the company’s CFO. But after only seven months — or eight months, depending on who you ask — Krause stepped down and left the company to start his own electric car startup, Evelozcity.

The quick turnaround from his departure at Faraday to the launch of Evelozcity sits at the heart of Faraday’s claims. According to the company, Evelozcity was incorporated on or around Nov. 7, a day after Krause asked Faraday’s then-head of human resources to back-date his resignation by two weeks. For his part, Kraus says that he actually left the company the month before.

Whichever side is telling the truth, the lawsuit paints yet another picture on the sorry state of affairs happening within Faraday Future. If it’s not news about the company struggling to raise cash, it’s news about shutting down its hyped gigafactory in Nevada. If it’s not that, it’s news about founder Jia Yueting’s crumbling business empire. Now it’s about a lawsuit against two former executives who may or may not have stolen trade secrets from the electric carmaker. This is the reality of what’s become of Faraday Future.

References


Did They Steal? Faraday Future Sues Former Execs for Trade Secret Theft - image 700035

Read our full review on the 2018 Faraday Future FF 91.

PostHeaderIcon Did They Steal? Faraday Future Sues Former Execs for Trade Secret Theft

Faraday Future is in the headlines again. The beleaguered electric carmaker has filed a lawsuit against a startup company founded by former executives that used to work for the company. The lawsuit specifically accuses former Faraday CFO Stefan Krause and CTO Ulrich Kranz of stealing trade secrets and poaching talent away from the company. Krause and Kranz eventually started Evelozcity Inc., a company that touts itself as an electric vehicle manufacturer that’s looking to address the “future needs of urban mobility.” Sound familiar?


Did They Steal? Faraday Future Sues Former Execs for Trade Secret Theft - image 700027
“The lawsuit accuses Krause and Kranz of stealing trade secrets and soliciting 20 former employees to join a startup electric car company that would compete against Faraday Future.”

Will there come a day when we’ll actually receive some good news come out of Faraday Future? It seems so long ago that something like it has happened. The lawsuit, which was filed at the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, accuses Krause and Kranz of stealing trade secrets and soliciting 20 former employees to join a startup electric car company that would compete against Faraday Future.

According to the complaint, employees who left Faraday to join Evelozcity were encouraged to get as much information as they could from the company they were leaving. This included downloading thousands of confidential documents and so-called “trade secrets,” ranging from vendor databases to technical documents.

Not surprisingly, Evelozcity responded to the complaint by debunking all of its claims. “This complaint continues Faraday’s pattern of hurling false and inflammatory accusations against us,” the new startup said in a statement. “We will respond to the many recklessly inaccurate allegations in this desperate lawsuit at the appropriate time.”


Did They Steal? Faraday Future Sues Former Execs for Trade Secret Theft - image 700023
“Evelozcity was incorporated on or around Nov. 7, a day after Krause asked Faraday’s then-head of human resources to back-date his resignation by two weeks”

Faraday Future’s status as a sinking ship is well-documented, so it wasn’t a shock when its CFO and CTO left the company to look for greener pastures. Krause, in particular, didn’t last long in Faraday. He was hired in March 2017 to help raise funding and oversee its finances as the company’s CFO. But after only seven months — or eight months, depending on who you ask — Krause stepped down and left the company to start his own electric car startup, Evelozcity.

The quick turnaround from his departure at Faraday to the launch of Evelozcity sits at the heart of Faraday’s claims. According to the company, Evelozcity was incorporated on or around Nov. 7, a day after Krause asked Faraday’s then-head of human resources to back-date his resignation by two weeks. For his part, Kraus says that he actually left the company the month before.

Whichever side is telling the truth, the lawsuit paints yet another picture on the sorry state of affairs happening within Faraday Future. If it’s not news about the company struggling to raise cash, it’s news about shutting down its hyped gigafactory in Nevada. If it’s not that, it’s news about founder Jia Yueting’s crumbling business empire. Now it’s about a lawsuit against two former executives who may or may not have stolen trade secrets from the electric carmaker. This is the reality of what’s become of Faraday Future.

References


Did They Steal? Faraday Future Sues Former Execs for Trade Secret Theft - image 700035

Read our full review on the 2018 Faraday Future FF 91.

PostHeaderIcon BMW to Launch an M2 Gran Coupe in 2019

A report is swirling around the Internet suggesting BMW is launching a new 2 Series Gran Coupe in 2019. The new sedan will also boast an M version, complete with the current M2’s 3.0-liter turbocharged inline-six making 365 horsepower and 343 pound-feet of torque and will come with a six-speed manual and optional seven-speed dual-clutch.

For those not familiar, BMW’s “Gran Coupe” models are basically four-door sedans based on two-door coupes that have a hatchback rather than a trunk. For the 2 Series Gran Coupe, it will be an elongated 2 Series with four doors that is slightly smaller than the 3 Series sedan. BMW already does with the 4 Series and 6 Series. Making things even more confusing is BMW’s not-so-recent division of the 3 Series Coupe into its own model, the 4 Series. Then BMW gave the 4 Series (which is a coupe) a four-door version under the Gran Coupe guise. So in other words, the 4 Series Gran Coupe is a four-door hatchback version of a two-door coupe, which is a derivative of a four-door sedan. Yeah…

Continue reading for more on the rumored M2 Gran Coupe.


2018 BMW 2 Series Coupe - image 724423
“A 2 Series Gran Coupe would offer more room for people and space for cargo in a compact sedan while having a handy hatchback lid”

While it could be very easily argued that BMW is splitting hairs and flooding the market with cars that are too similar, the German automaker seems dead-set of the idea.

It’s hard to imagine a BMW customer wanting a premium-level, expensive 6 Series Coupe that has been transformed into a four-door hatchback, the same action makes more sense on the lower end of BMW’s lineup. A 2 Series Gran Coupe would offer more room for people and space for cargo in a compact sedan while having a handy hatchback lid. Better still is having that functionality but mixed with the M2’s 365 horsepower and slick transmission options.

An M2 Gran Coupe would compete directly against the Audi RS3 and Mercedes-AMG CLA 45. Both the Audi and Mercedes are established models, so BMW has some ground to catch up.

BMW has yet to confirm the 2 Series Gran Coupe rumors, but AutoCar reportedly has knowledge of the future plans. The website then says the new four-door hatchback coupe will arrive in showrooms sometime in 2019. It’s unknown if it will be a 2019 or 2020 model-year vehicle, however.

References

BMW M2


2018 BMW M2 Gran Coupe - image 679499

Read our full speculative review on the 2019 BMW M2 Gran Coupe.


2016 - 2018 BMW M2 - image 650546

Read our full review on the 2018 BMW M2.


2018 Audi RS3 Sedan - image 690334

Read our full review on the 2018 Audi RS3 sedan.


2017 Mercedes-AMG CLA45 - image 669717

Read our full review on the 2018 Mercedes-AMG CLA45.


maker logos - image 741745

Read more BMW news.

PostHeaderIcon BMW to Launch an M2 Gran Coupe in 2019

A report is swirling around the Internet suggesting BMW is launching a new 2 Series Gran Coupe in 2019. The new sedan will also boast an M version, complete with the current M2’s 3.0-liter turbocharged inline-six making 365 horsepower and 343 pound-feet of torque and will come with a six-speed manual and optional seven-speed dual-clutch.

For those not familiar, BMW’s “Gran Coupe” models are basically four-door sedans based on two-door coupes that have a hatchback rather than a trunk. For the 2 Series Gran Coupe, it will be an elongated 2 Series with four doors that is slightly smaller than the 3 Series sedan. BMW already does with the 4 Series and 6 Series. Making things even more confusing is BMW’s not-so-recent division of the 3 Series Coupe into its own model, the 4 Series. Then BMW gave the 4 Series (which is a coupe) a four-door version under the Gran Coupe guise. So in other words, the 4 Series Gran Coupe is a four-door hatchback version of a two-door coupe, which is a derivative of a four-door sedan. Yeah…

Continue reading for more on the rumored M2 Gran Coupe.


2018 BMW 2 Series Coupe - image 724423
“A 2 Series Gran Coupe would offer more room for people and space for cargo in a compact sedan while having a handy hatchback lid”

While it could be very easily argued that BMW is splitting hairs and flooding the market with cars that are too similar, the German automaker seems dead-set of the idea.

It’s hard to imagine a BMW customer wanting a premium-level, expensive 6 Series Coupe that has been transformed into a four-door hatchback, the same action makes more sense on the lower end of BMW’s lineup. A 2 Series Gran Coupe would offer more room for people and space for cargo in a compact sedan while having a handy hatchback lid. Better still is having that functionality but mixed with the M2’s 365 horsepower and slick transmission options.

An M2 Gran Coupe would compete directly against the Audi RS3 and Mercedes-AMG CLA 45. Both the Audi and Mercedes are established models, so BMW has some ground to catch up.

BMW has yet to confirm the 2 Series Gran Coupe rumors, but AutoCar reportedly has knowledge of the future plans. The website then says the new four-door hatchback coupe will arrive in showrooms sometime in 2019. It’s unknown if it will be a 2019 or 2020 model-year vehicle, however.

References

BMW M2


2018 BMW M2 Gran Coupe - image 679499

Read our full speculative review on the 2019 BMW M2 Gran Coupe.


2016 - 2018 BMW M2 - image 650546

Read our full review on the 2018 BMW M2.


2018 Audi RS3 Sedan - image 690334

Read our full review on the 2018 Audi RS3 sedan.


2017 Mercedes-AMG CLA45 - image 669717

Read our full review on the 2018 Mercedes-AMG CLA45.


maker logos - image 741745

Read more BMW news.

PostHeaderIcon BMW to Launch an M2 Gran Coupe in 2019

A report is swirling around the Internet suggesting BMW is launching a new 2 Series Gran Coupe in 2019. The new sedan will also boast an M version, complete with the current M2’s 3.0-liter turbocharged inline-six making 365 horsepower and 343 pound-feet of torque and will come with a six-speed manual and optional seven-speed dual-clutch.

For those not familiar, BMW’s “Gran Coupe” models are basically four-door sedans based on two-door coupes that have a hatchback rather than a trunk. For the 2 Series Gran Coupe, it will be an elongated 2 Series with four doors that is slightly smaller than the 3 Series sedan. BMW already does with the 4 Series and 6 Series. Making things even more confusing is BMW’s not-so-recent division of the 3 Series Coupe into its own model, the 4 Series. Then BMW gave the 4 Series (which is a coupe) a four-door version under the Gran Coupe guise. So in other words, the 4 Series Gran Coupe is a four-door hatchback version of a two-door coupe, which is a derivative of a four-door sedan. Yeah…

Continue reading for more on the rumored M2 Gran Coupe.


2018 BMW 2 Series Coupe - image 724423
“A 2 Series Gran Coupe would offer more room for people and space for cargo in a compact sedan while having a handy hatchback lid”

While it could be very easily argued that BMW is splitting hairs and flooding the market with cars that are too similar, the German automaker seems dead-set of the idea.

It’s hard to imagine a BMW customer wanting a premium-level, expensive 6 Series Coupe that has been transformed into a four-door hatchback, the same action makes more sense on the lower end of BMW’s lineup. A 2 Series Gran Coupe would offer more room for people and space for cargo in a compact sedan while having a handy hatchback lid. Better still is having that functionality but mixed with the M2’s 365 horsepower and slick transmission options.

An M2 Gran Coupe would compete directly against the Audi RS3 and Mercedes-AMG CLA 45. Both the Audi and Mercedes are established models, so BMW has some ground to catch up.

BMW has yet to confirm the 2 Series Gran Coupe rumors, but AutoCar reportedly has knowledge of the future plans. The website then says the new four-door hatchback coupe will arrive in showrooms sometime in 2019. It’s unknown if it will be a 2019 or 2020 model-year vehicle, however.

References

BMW M2


2018 BMW M2 Gran Coupe - image 679499

Read our full speculative review on the 2019 BMW M2 Gran Coupe.


2016 - 2018 BMW M2 - image 650546

Read our full review on the 2018 BMW M2.


2018 Audi RS3 Sedan - image 690334

Read our full review on the 2018 Audi RS3 sedan.


2017 Mercedes-AMG CLA45 - image 669717

Read our full review on the 2018 Mercedes-AMG CLA45.


maker logos - image 741745

Read more BMW news.

PostHeaderIcon Kia is Working on a More Extreme Version of the Forte and it Smells like Proceed

The all-new Kia Forte’s debut at the 2018 Detroit Auto Show was met with sighs of relief from a public that had gone tired and weary of the last-generation model. The third and current-generation Forte came with an updated styling that evoked similarities to the highly touted Stinger GT. It also featured an updated interior and new safety and tech equipment. As promising as the new Forte is, there might be more reason to celebrate because of reports that a hotter version of the Forte could be in the pipeline for performance-starved customers in the U.S.


Kia is Working on a More Extreme Version of the Forte and it Smells like Proceed - image 761778
“"We’re not done with Forte, so we have more exciting products"”

We’re long overdue, aren’t we? I’d like to think so because we’ve so far been shut out of the 200-horsepower Kia ProCee’d GT, which is available in both the U.K. and European markets. On our end, the best we can get as far as an entry-level performance Kia is the Elantra Sport or, if we’re really reaching, the Soul Turbo.

A performance version of the Forte makes a lot of sense. The model’s product manager, Derrick Ty, seems to be of the same mind. Speaking with Motor Trend, Ty confirmed that there are more plans for the all-new Forte beyond the sedan that we saw in Detroit last month. “We’re not done with Forte, so we have more exciting products,” he said. “We have more exciting products that are coming that I can’t speak of… It’ll be pretty exciting for the next few years. I mean, I’m already excited as it is with the Forte the way it turned out. It’s a taste of what’s to come.”

If that’s the case, consider our appetites to grow in the coming months. There’s certainly going to be a lot of speculation on the model Ty’s hinting at, including what we think is a likely candidate: a performance version of the Forte5 hatchback.

The hatchback version of the Forte should follow in the sedan’s concept and debut in the coming months. This could be the model Ty is referring to because all the elements are there for a performance model. More importantly, a hot version of the Forte5 would slot in nicely in a Forte lineup that Kia appears to be expanding.


Kia is Working on a More Extreme Version of the Forte and it Smells like Proceed - image 761803
“A hot version of the Forte5 would slot in nicely in a Forte lineup that Kia appears to be expanding.”

From a practical standpoint, the pieces are also already in place. Remember, the Forte already shares the same J5 platform with the Cee’d so building a hot hatch Forte5 based on the Pro_Cee’d GT isn’t going to be a start-from-scratch proposition. The latter has already proven itself as a desirable hot hatch, thanks in part to a 1.6-liter GDI engine that delivers a total of 201 horsepower and 195 pound-feet of torque. Those power numbers on a hot Forte5 would do well to satisfy the cravings of hot hatch aficionados here in the US.

Regardless of what Kia has in store for the all-new Forte, a possible performance model is the kind of shot-in-the-arm the automaker needs to get people in the U.S. excited about the model. We’ll have to make do with the Forte sedan for now, but if there is a hot hatch in the horizon, you can be sure that a lot of people are going to want a piece of that.

References

Kia Forte


2019 Kia Forte - image 761739

Read our full review on the 2019 Kia Forte.


maker logos - image 745757

Read more Kia news.

PostHeaderIcon Kia is Working on a More Extreme Version of the Forte and it Smells like Proceed

The all-new Kia Forte’s debut at the 2018 Detroit Auto Show was met with sighs of relief from a public that had gone tired and weary of the last-generation model. The third and current-generation Forte came with an updated styling that evoked similarities to the highly touted Stinger GT. It also featured an updated interior and new safety and tech equipment. As promising as the new Forte is, there might be more reason to celebrate because of reports that a hotter version of the Forte could be in the pipeline for performance-starved customers in the U.S.


Kia is Working on a More Extreme Version of the Forte and it Smells like Proceed - image 761778
“"We’re not done with Forte, so we have more exciting products"”

We’re long overdue, aren’t we? I’d like to think so because we’ve so far been shut out of the 200-horsepower Kia ProCee’d GT, which is available in both the U.K. and European markets. On our end, the best we can get as far as an entry-level performance Kia is the Elantra Sport or, if we’re really reaching, the Soul Turbo.

A performance version of the Forte makes a lot of sense. The model’s product manager, Derrick Ty, seems to be of the same mind. Speaking with Motor Trend, Ty confirmed that there are more plans for the all-new Forte beyond the sedan that we saw in Detroit last month. “We’re not done with Forte, so we have more exciting products,” he said. “We have more exciting products that are coming that I can’t speak of… It’ll be pretty exciting for the next few years. I mean, I’m already excited as it is with the Forte the way it turned out. It’s a taste of what’s to come.”

If that’s the case, consider our appetites to grow in the coming months. There’s certainly going to be a lot of speculation on the model Ty’s hinting at, including what we think is a likely candidate: a performance version of the Forte5 hatchback.

The hatchback version of the Forte should follow in the sedan’s concept and debut in the coming months. This could be the model Ty is referring to because all the elements are there for a performance model. More importantly, a hot version of the Forte5 would slot in nicely in a Forte lineup that Kia appears to be expanding.


Kia is Working on a More Extreme Version of the Forte and it Smells like Proceed - image 761803
“A hot version of the Forte5 would slot in nicely in a Forte lineup that Kia appears to be expanding.”

From a practical standpoint, the pieces are also already in place. Remember, the Forte already shares the same J5 platform with the Cee’d so building a hot hatch Forte5 based on the Pro_Cee’d GT isn’t going to be a start-from-scratch proposition. The latter has already proven itself as a desirable hot hatch, thanks in part to a 1.6-liter GDI engine that delivers a total of 201 horsepower and 195 pound-feet of torque. Those power numbers on a hot Forte5 would do well to satisfy the cravings of hot hatch aficionados here in the US.

Regardless of what Kia has in store for the all-new Forte, a possible performance model is the kind of shot-in-the-arm the automaker needs to get people in the U.S. excited about the model. We’ll have to make do with the Forte sedan for now, but if there is a hot hatch in the horizon, you can be sure that a lot of people are going to want a piece of that.

References

Kia Forte


2019 Kia Forte - image 761739

Read our full review on the 2019 Kia Forte.


maker logos - image 745757

Read more Kia news.

PostHeaderIcon Kia is Working on a More Extreme Version of the Forte and it Smells like Proceed

The all-new Kia Forte’s debut at the 2018 Detroit Auto Show was met with sighs of relief from a public that had gone tired and weary of the last-generation model. The third and current-generation Forte came with an updated styling that evoked similarities to the highly touted Stinger GT. It also featured an updated interior and new safety and tech equipment. As promising as the new Forte is, there might be more reason to celebrate because of reports that a hotter version of the Forte could be in the pipeline for performance-starved customers in the U.S.


Kia is Working on a More Extreme Version of the Forte and it Smells like Proceed - image 761778
“"We’re not done with Forte, so we have more exciting products"”

We’re long overdue, aren’t we? I’d like to think so because we’ve so far been shut out of the 200-horsepower Kia ProCee’d GT, which is available in both the U.K. and European markets. On our end, the best we can get as far as an entry-level performance Kia is the Elantra Sport or, if we’re really reaching, the Soul Turbo.

A performance version of the Forte makes a lot of sense. The model’s product manager, Derrick Ty, seems to be of the same mind. Speaking with Motor Trend, Ty confirmed that there are more plans for the all-new Forte beyond the sedan that we saw in Detroit last month. “We’re not done with Forte, so we have more exciting products,” he said. “We have more exciting products that are coming that I can’t speak of… It’ll be pretty exciting for the next few years. I mean, I’m already excited as it is with the Forte the way it turned out. It’s a taste of what’s to come.”

If that’s the case, consider our appetites to grow in the coming months. There’s certainly going to be a lot of speculation on the model Ty’s hinting at, including what we think is a likely candidate: a performance version of the Forte5 hatchback.

The hatchback version of the Forte should follow in the sedan’s concept and debut in the coming months. This could be the model Ty is referring to because all the elements are there for a performance model. More importantly, a hot version of the Forte5 would slot in nicely in a Forte lineup that Kia appears to be expanding.


Kia is Working on a More Extreme Version of the Forte and it Smells like Proceed - image 761803
“A hot version of the Forte5 would slot in nicely in a Forte lineup that Kia appears to be expanding.”

From a practical standpoint, the pieces are also already in place. Remember, the Forte already shares the same J5 platform with the Cee’d so building a hot hatch Forte5 based on the Pro_Cee’d GT isn’t going to be a start-from-scratch proposition. The latter has already proven itself as a desirable hot hatch, thanks in part to a 1.6-liter GDI engine that delivers a total of 201 horsepower and 195 pound-feet of torque. Those power numbers on a hot Forte5 would do well to satisfy the cravings of hot hatch aficionados here in the US.

Regardless of what Kia has in store for the all-new Forte, a possible performance model is the kind of shot-in-the-arm the automaker needs to get people in the U.S. excited about the model. We’ll have to make do with the Forte sedan for now, but if there is a hot hatch in the horizon, you can be sure that a lot of people are going to want a piece of that.

References

Kia Forte


2019 Kia Forte - image 761739

Read our full review on the 2019 Kia Forte.


maker logos - image 745757

Read more Kia news.

PostHeaderIcon Video: Mercedes S-Class With “Digital Light” Headlights Caught Testing In The Wild

Mercedes’ up-and-coming four-door limo is hitting the streets early, this time to test out the German brand’s latest headlight technology. The large-and-in-charge luxury sedan was recently caught prowling the public streets emblazoned with a set of side graphics proudly declaring “Digital Light,” so it’s not exactly a secret Merc is pushing to get this tech into the hands of customers as soon as possible.

The “Digital Light” system first broke cover early last month, with Mercedes proclaiming a litany of benefits to safety. For example, the headlights can project road signs directly onto the road, like a stop sign at an intersection, providing an extra reminder to the driver and others. The headlights also provide the usual adaptive features, identifying other cars on the road and changing the beam pattern to refrain from dazzling oncoming motorists. The system will even modify the beam to keep it out of the eyes of pedestrians.

To accomplish this, each headlight in the S-Class will use more than a million “micro mirrors,” each of which helps to refine the headlight beam as needed, while a system of outboard cameras and radar systems scan the road for traffic signs, cars, and pedestrians. In addition to the updates to the new HD headlights, the S-Class will also get a pair of new taillights, although they won’t be nearly as tech-heavy as the lights up front.

Unfortunately, it’s uncertain whether or not the Digital Light tech will make it stateside, as outdated legislation could prevent it from being sold here, much like old adaptive headlight technology. Either way, look for it to hit dealers in Europe as soon as 2020.


References

Mercedes-Benz S-Class


2018 Mercedes-Benz S-Class - image 713883

Read our full review on the 2018 Mercedes-Benz S-Class.


maker logos - image 743625

Read more Mercedes-Benz news.

PostHeaderIcon You Can Rent A Tesla In Minneapolis For Super Bowl Week

Normally, if you wanna drive around in a new Tesla for a little while, you gotta have a trusting friend with one already parked in his or her driveway. Now, one rental company in Minnesota is offering folks a shot at experiencing a Tesla first-hand by renting them out during Super Bowl week.

Continue reading for the full story.

The Full Story


2016 Tesla Model X - image 722484

Thanks to its silent-running motors and low-end all-electron torque shove, driving a Tesla is most definitely an interesting and unique experience. The badge carries quite a bit of clout, which has prompted a variety of rental companies to offer the California-sourced EVs as their exclusive brand. Trevls is one such company, and now the Minneapolis-based firm is setting up shop at the Mall of America to push its 20-Tesla strong fleet out to visitors in town for the Big Game.

Pricing ranges between $195 per day for the Model S sedan, while the Model X sport utility vehicle is $350 per day. Funny enough, Trevls is even offering rental by the hour, which is perfect for anyone looking to take a Tesla for a test drive.


2017 Tesla Model S - image 672438
“Finding a Model S parked inside the Mall of America is a bit of a windfall for Tesla, as the company has been vying to get a location there to tempt potential buyers.”

Finding a Model S parked inside the Mall of America is a bit of a windfall for Tesla, as the company has been vying to get a location there to tempt potential buyers. However, state law stipulates car sales must be done through a dealer, which is a sales model Tesla refuses to adopt, instead preferring direct sales. However, a rental company offering hour-long rates circumvents the issue entirely.

As a reminder, the current Tesla Model S comes in three different flavors, including the 275-mile 75D, the 351-mile 100D, and the top-trim 337-mile P100D. That last model manages an incredible run to 60 mph in just 2.3 seconds. Meanwhile, the Model X features seating for up to seven passengers, Falcon Wing doors, and 295 miles per charge.

References

Tesla Model S


2017 Tesla Model S - image 672438

Read our full review on the 2017 Tesla Model S.

Tesla Model X


2016 Tesla Model X - image 678035

Read our full review on the 2017 Tesla Model X.


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Read more Tesla news.

PostHeaderIcon Mercedes Is Giving Away An AMG C43 Coupe During The Super Bowl

Do you have a smartphone, a finger, and an astounding amount of free time? Then you could very well win a pumped-up German luxury two-door in Mercedes’ latest promotion.

Continue reading for the full story.

The Full Story


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“The German brand is calling it “Last Fan Standing,” and the principle is identical – the last one to keep in contact with the auto takes it home as a prize. However, this time around, the competitors can be anywhere, and every one of them has their finger on their smartphone.”

Some of you out there might be familiar with that old car dealership promotion called “Last Man Standing,” wherein participants would place their hands on a car, and the last person to remain in contact with the auto took it home as a prize. It’s a game of patience and determination and calling into work sick the next day because dammit you’re gonna win this thing, and now, Mercedes is giving us a new digital version.

The German brand is calling it “Last Fan Standing,” and the principle is identical – the last one to keep in contact with the auto takes it home as a prize. However, this time around, the competitors can be anywhere, and every one of them has their finger on their smartphone.

“This new digital version requires players to use their fingers to follow a virtual Mercedes-AMG C43 Coupe around a smartphone screen until their patience or attention gives way,” Merc explains in a press release. “However, the original rules remain the same: lose contact with the car, you’re out. The last person touching the car wins it.”

Participants will be able to monitor their progress thanks to a real-time counter on the screen that displays the number of contestants currently playing the game and how long the game has been going on. To get into the mood, Merc is dropping an interactive training game that’ll help would-be players practice tracking the AMG Merc as it moves across the face of their smartphone.


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“Players who share on Twitter that they're participating are granted a five-minute “timeout” whenever they want.”

Official registration kicks off on game day, Sunday, February 4th, between 12:00 AM and 6:25 PM EST. If you’re interested, visit LastFanStanding.com to check it out. While there, you’ll also be able to find tips and advice on how to win, including phone charging suggestions and how to execute a bathroom break.

Additionally, players who share on Twitter that they’re participating are granted a five-minute “timeout” whenever they want.

The car itself is worth some $63,140, and the lucky winner will also receive roughly 20 grand extra to cover the various taxes and fees. The winner can also choose another Merc model if desired, but it’s unlikely you’ll get your hands on the Project One.

As a reminder, the Mercedes-AMG C43 comes equipped with an AMG-tuned 3.0-liter V-6 stuffed by two turbochargers to produce a total of 362 horsepower and 384 pound-feet of torque. Output is routed through a nine-speed automatic transmission and AWD system, with the 0-to-60 mph sprint completed in 4.6 seconds.

References

Mercedes C-Class


2017 Mercedes-AMG C43 Coupe Unveiled - image 667049

Read our full review on the 2016 Mercedes-AMG C43.


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Read more Mercedes-Benz news.

PostHeaderIcon Porsche Claims The Mission E is its Make-or-Break Model

The Porsche Mission E electric car is an important model for Porsche. It’s so important, actually, that Porsche CEO Oliver Blume describes at as the company’s make-or-break model. There might be some hyperbole attached to that statement, but the all-electric sedan’s importance to the automaker’s electrification effort cannot be understated. At worst, it could short-circuit Porsche’s dreams of an electrified future. At best, it could jolt that future to life.


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“he German automaker has invested more than $1 billion on these new technologies, and the Mission-E sits at the heart of that investment”

The industry is trending towards an electrified future, and almost all automakers are getting on board with that shift. Porsche is in on it, too. The German automaker has invested more than $1 billion on these new technologies, and the Mission-E sits at the heart of that investment. That’s a lot of money tied to the potential of one model to live up to expectations.

The good news is that Porsche has a good track record of innovation. It was one of the first companies to really strike gold in the luxury SUV market. It’s decision to build a four-door saloon — the Panamera — has opened plenty of doors, including the hybrid and plug-in hybrid markets. According to Porsche, the Panamera plug-in hybrid is now the best-selling variant of the sedan, accounting for around 60 percent of the Panamera’s sales volume. Countries like Norway and Belgium have even reported 90 percent sales of the plug-in hybrid, a staggering percentage even by today’s standards.


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“The goal now is to put the electric sedan in the best possible position to succeed”

The kind of success Porsche has had in the hybrid, and plug-in hybrid segments, is what the company’s hoping to replicate with the Mission-E. Albrecht Reimold, member of the Executive Board for Production and Logistic, called the Mission E the company’s “most ambitious project.” The resources Porsche put into developing the car, and the technology that comes with it adds weight to the statement.

The goal now is to put the electric sedan in the best possible position to succeed. Porsche is doing its part with the nine-figure investment. Of that sum, $870 million went to the production facilities near its headquarters in Zuffenhausen. There’s a new paint shop, a dedicated assembly area, and long conveyor bridge that will be used to transport the painted bodies and drive units to the final assembly area.

If the Mission E becomes a successful model, Porsche’s investments in electrification will spur the creation of a new line of pure electric models. If the Mission E is not a success, then Porsche will likely lose all the momentum it has generated in recent years.

No pressure, right?

References

Porsche Mission E


Porsche Claims The Mission E is its Make-or-Break Model - image 750706

Read our full speculative review on the 2020 Porsche Mission E.


2021 Porsche Mission E GTS - image 743227

Read our full speculative review on the 2020 Porsche Mission E GTS.


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Read more Porsche news.

PostHeaderIcon Mercedes-AMG CLS 53 4Matic

Merc has been making the CLS-Class since the early 2000’s, dropping the first-gen with a debut at the 2004 New York International Auto Show. Framed as a sleek sedan packing top-shelf luxury, a sporty exterior, and no shortage of power under the hood, Merc quickly ushered in the go-faster AMG iteration at the 2004 Paris Motor Show. The second-generation CLS arrived in 2011, with a hot-to-trot AMG 63 hot on its heels. Now, there’s a third-gen model on the table, with the latest CLS dropping at the 2017 Los Angeles Show. As is tradition, Mercedes brought along a new AMG iteration as well, introducing the new 53-Series model alongside two other high-powered luxury rides from the boffins at AMG, including the 53-Series AMG E-Class Coupe and the
E-Class Cabriolet, all of which arrived in style at the 2018 Detroit Auto Show. All told, the latest AMG CLS 53 4Matic comes packing with superlative Mercedes-Benz styling, the latest technology in the cabin, a high-performance attitude, and all the requisite power to back it.

The new four-door coupe also comes a supplementary electric system that adds a good deal of low-end torque on demand, a feature that makes the heavy-hitting luxury cruiser even more frisky when you dig into the skinny pedal. “With the new 53-series models we are extending our portfolio in a first step towards a hybridised future with a leading-edge combination of sporty design, performance and efficiency,” says Tobias Moers, Chairman of the Board of Management at Mercedes-AMG GmbH. Sounds good. But how good is it, really? Read on for all the details.

Continue reading to learn more about the 2019 Mercedes-AMG CLS 53 4MATIC.

Exterior

  • Looks elegant and refined, yet aggressive
  • Four-door coupe body style
  • Wide and low stance
  • Graceful roof line
  • Pumped-up AMG cues front to back
  • Tweaked styling in the nose
  • Extended and rounded rear end
  • Polished metal and carbon fiber trim
  • Subtle yet effective rear trunk spoiler
  • Standard 19-inch wheels
  • Optional 20-inch wheels

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“When it comes to the underlying philosophy driving the CLS-Series, there seems to be two main schools of thought – elegance and power.”

When it comes to the underlying philosophy driving the CLS-Series, there seems to be two main schools of thought – the first is elegance and refinement, which is to be expected considering the three-pointed star badge fixed to the nose. The other half of the equation is power and performance, both traits that get triple underlined when dealing with something from AMG.

As such, the AMG CLS 53 4Matic looks like a powerful, low-swept grand touring machine. The wheelbase is long, as is the hood line, while the stance is wide and close to the ground. The headlight housings pull back into the fenders with a triangular shape and check-mark daytime running lights, while the roof line is rounded, falling back into an equally rounded rear end with a graceful, unbroken arc. The tail section is square in its proportions and rounded at the edges, enhancing the car’s visual length with an extended overhang.

Updated features for the latest 2018 model year are numerous. Let’s start in front, where we find a twin-blade radiator grille, a design once relegated exclusively for the V-8 models (this one’s got a ’six under the hood, by the way). The main intake is complemented by black mesh insert, as is the lower horizontal intake. A dividing middle character bar stretches from side to side and comes finished in shiny metal. There’s also an A-wing front apron that incorporates black flics, while a front splitter juts out from the lower bumper section and comes finished with chrome detailing. Further horizontal elements in the outer intakes also add to the car’s visual width, while additional air curtains specific to the model help to reduce drag.


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“The AMG CLS 53 4Matic looks like a powerful, low-swept grand touring machine. The wheelbase is long, as is the hood line, while the stance is wide and close to the ground. New features include a restyled grille and extra aero efficiency.”

Moving over to the car’s profile, we find AMG-specific side sills that bring the car just a little closer to the ground. Higher up, there’s a set of side-view mirrors that are positioned further back on the body in a manner that’s reminiscent of the AMG GT sports car. We also love how that roof line naturally draws the eye rearwards into the well-proportioned rear end.

Speaking of the rear, the tail of the machine sports mud flaps that were redesigned to be more aerodynamically efficient, moving air around the wheel arches. The rear apron comes with a diffuser insert that completes the car’s squarish rear profile, plus there’s a quartet of round exhaust tips finished in a high-gloss chrome that do well to enhance the car’s sporting demeanor. Up top is a body-colored trunk lid spoiler, a feature that’s also offered in an optional carbon-fiber finish. At the sides are two-section taillights, which Mercedes says allow for a bigger trunk opening. Their shape also gives the car a wide and low stance that looks great with its wider track.


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Finally, the AMG CLS 53 4Matic comes standard with 19-inch wheels made with an alloy construction, but buyers can also get theirs with the optional 20-inch wheels if preferred.

Interior

  • Horizontal layout dripping with opulence
  • Large infotainment screen connects with the driver’s screen
  • Several options for upholstery materials and colors
  • Multiple display modes for the screens
  • Carbon fiber trim material dominates throughout
  • Sport seats keep limbs in place
  • Brushed metal adds extra bling
  • Voice control and touch pad for inputs
  • Energizing comfort control provides synergy
  • Latest safety tech included

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“Horizontal cues appear to be the predominant style here, with a broad, sweeping dash that wraps its way fully around the cabin in an almost unbroken slab.”

Like its exterior appearance, the interior of the AMG CLS 53 4Matic looks to combine elegance with sportiness. However, this go-faster four-door definitely leans heavily towards the sporting side of things thanks to its copious AMG-specific equipment and trim bits.

But before we get into all that, though, let’s first examine the layout and design. Horizontal cues appear to be the predominant style here, with a broad, sweeping dash that wraps its way fully around the cabin in an almost unbroken slab. Air vents are placed in the corners, while a quartet of vents are mounted in the middle, all coming with a rounded shape and exaggerated rifling inserts. The center console is equally large and wide, as is the infotainment and gauge cluster screens (more on those in a little bit).

In back, we find a wave design seating arrangement, which Mercedes says was tweaked this time around to provide more comfort. There’s a new shape, new colors, and
new materials, with an overarching focus on providing the utmost in comfort, ergonomics, sportiness, and safety. There’s also an adjustable head rest height. There’s seating for three in the rear, which in addition to the two up front, brings passenger capacity to five. Additional practicality is offered with the 40:20:40 split in the bench, making the most of the available space in the trunk.

Now let’s talk about all that AMG gear, shall we? The CLS 53 comes standard with an AMG steering wheel wrapped in nappa leather, offering a flat bottom, four spokes, red contrast stitching, and a red top center mark. The wheel is also optional with wood inserts in piano lacquer, or a Dinamica microfiber, if preferred. There’s highly bolstered sport seats up front as well, with an AMG-specific upholstery appointment, plus more of that red contrast stitching. AMG badges are added in numerous places, and there are red seat belts to keep you in place. Carbon fiber trim is the dominant material of choice, but you can also get it with glass fiber in matte silver. Brushed metal and aluminum add extra bling.


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“The CLS 53 comes standard with an AMG steering wheel wrapped in nappa leather, highly bolstered sport seats, AMG-specific upholstery appointment, AMG badges, and red seat belts to keep you in place. Carbon fiber trim dominates.”

The top-shelf materials don’t stop there. Options include Artico leatherette and Dinamicra microfiber, nappa leather, and designo interior gear. Meanwhile, the color combos include macchiato beige with magma grey, black with bengal red, and espresso brown with magma grey. Several colors are also added to the rim of the steering wheel and the rear seating.

High-end materials and slick upholstery appointment are great, but no modern luxury mobile worth its animal hide would be complete without a modern infotainment system to keep passengers entertained and properly informed. As such, the AMG CLS 53 gets a new “control and display concept,” plus an optional 12.3-inch diagonal screen. This unit combines to create a Widescreen Cockpit view, stretching across the dash to join up with the digital gauges behind the wheel. Users can adjust this to suit their taste using a lineup of display styles, which include “Classic,” “Sporty,” and “Progressive.” It’s also configurable to view parameters such as the engine oil temperature, the transmission oil temperature, lateral and longitudinal acceleration, engine output, torque levels, boost pressure, tire temperatures, tire pressure, and other info, plus the current vehicle system settings (and yeah, there’s a lot of them).

User inputs are made via touch-sensitive buttons placed on the steering wheel, enabling swiping motions akin to what you’d use on a smartphone or mobile device. There’s also a touch pad controller in the center console, and a new Linguatronic voice control system, the latter of which can be used for additional functions and features, such as the air conditioning, seat heat and ventilation, interior lights, and the optional heads-up display.


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“One of the more interesting features is the optional “Energizing comfort control,” which connects a variety of different systems for a holistic cabin experience.”

One of the more interesting features is the optional “Energizing comfort control,” which connects a variety of different systems (air conditioning, seat heating/ventilation/massage, surface heating, steering wheel heating, lighting, and “music moods”). With all these systems properly connected, the comfort control will generate “a special wellness set-up to enhance well-being and performance,” depending on the driver’s moods and requirements. While the description is a little vague, we see it as a bit like a holistic climate control, encompassing more than just the temperature of the air coming through the vents to more accurately fulfill the needs of the passenger.

The AMG CLS 53 4Matic also pulls tech from the Mercedes S-Class for the safety gear. Standard spec throws in features like Active Braking Assist, Lane Keeping Assist, Attention Assist, Speed Limit Assist, and the Pre-Safe system, while the optional gear includes Active Distance Assist, Active Steering Assist, Active Speed Limit Assist, Active Braking Assist (plus Cross-Traffic Function), Evasive Steering Assist, Active Blind Spot Assist, Active Lane Keeping Assist, and Pre-Safe Plus. Making it all work is the onboard camera and radar systems, which also throw in navigation data “to calculate vehicle behavior.”

Drivetrain

  • 3.0-liter inline six-cylinder engine
  • Twin turbochargers pump up the output
  • EQ Boost adds electric efficiency and low-end shove
  • Peak output rated at 435 horsepower and 384 pound-feet of torque.
  • 0-to-62 mph done in 4.5 seconds
  • Top speed rated at 168 mph with optional Driver’s package
  • Nine-speed automatic transmission and 4Matic AWD
  • Multiple drive modes

2019 Mercedes-AMG CLS 53 4Matic - image 761056
“The big news in this department is the new EQ Boost starter-alternator, which can “momentarily” provide another 21.5 horsepower and a remarkable 184.4 pound-feet of torque.”

Pop the hood on this four-door, and you’ll first find a big plastic engine cover, as is tradition these days. However, under all that plastic, Mercedes is hiding an electrified 3.0-liter inline six-cylinder engine, which gets pumped up by a twin-turbo set-up that includes one turbo spun by exhaust gases and a second turbo spun by an electric auxiliary compressor.

Of course, the big news in this department is the new EQ Boost starter-alternator, which can “momentarily” provide another 16 kW (21.5 horsepower) and a remarkable 250 Nm (184.4 pound-feet) of torque. The added muscle is great, but in addition to the extra go, the EQ Boost will also provide juice to the 48-volt onboard electrics.

This feature manages to combine a starter and alternator into a single electric motor, which Merc then mounted between the engine and transmission. According to the automaker, “This innovation as well as the intelligent charging via an electric auxiliary compressor and an exhaust gas turbocharger all have the same goal: to enhance the hallmark AMG performance and driving dynamics, while at the same time reducing fuel consumption and emissions.” We’re all for that first bit, but if Merc can one-up the output while also decreasing the fuel consumption, we’re all for it.


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“A system like this should provide a really solid whomp way down low in the rpm range, and once the engine is spinning fast enough, the gas-driven turbo will kick in for even more peak power.”

Indeed, a system like this should provide a really solid whomp way down low in the rpm range, and once the engine is spinning fast enough, the gas-driven turbo will kick in for even more peak power. That means that despite the high-boost applications, there’s no turbo lag, thus offering more refinement (less turbo thrash) and a super-sharp throttle response as well. Very nice.

All told, look out for this system to make into future hybrid applications from AMG. Even with a shift in priorities to higher efficiency, systems like this will keep the brand in the high-performance game. “Thanks to the 48 V battery, the overall battery capacity in the vehicle is increased, enabling more electrical energy to be made available – and therefore also allowing innovative functions to be introduced, for example,” Mercedes says. “The 48 V on-board electrical system is therefore paving the way for further hybridisation.”

While we’re on the subject, we might as well mention the fuel and energy savings that come with the 2018 model year. These include the previously mentioned 48-volt electric system, an energy recuperation system, and an engine start/stop system now offering smoother transitions between engine on and engine off. There’s also a glide mode that’ll let you coast when most appropriate. With all those systems combined, the AMG CLS 53 4Matic manages 8.4 liters per 100 km (28 mpg), as well as 200 grams per km in CO2 emissions.

More importantly, though, is output, which is rated at 435 horsepower and 520 Nm (384 pound-feet) of torque. All that muscle makes it quick, with the 0-to-100 km/h (62 mph) test done in only 4.5 seconds – solid sports car territory. Toss in the Driver’s package, and top speed looks like 270 km/h (168 mph), also impressive for such a large luxury four-door.

It’s also worth mentioning that the engine is shorter this time around, as Mercedes deleted the ancillary component belt drive. As a result, Merc was able to install the exhaust gas after-treatment system closer to the engine, yielding even higher levels of efficiency.


2019 Mercedes-AMG CLS 53 4Matic - image 761032
“Output is rated at 435 horsepower and 384 pound-feet of torque. All that muscle makes it quick, with the 0-to-62 mph test done in only 4.5 seconds – solid sports car territory.”

Making the connection with the engine is an AMG Speedshift 9G automatic transmission. Merc prides itself on the nine-speed’s short shift times, and the quick-response you get from the shift paddles behind the steering wheel. Stand out features for the transmission include a double-declutching function, plus the ability to execute multiple downshifts at a time. Sport+ is the mode of choice for the most crispiest shifts possible, while the box also offers a fully manual mode for a more hands-on approach to the cog swaps.

After the transmission, power is fed into a fully variable all-wheel drive AMG Performance 4Matic+ system as standard. This comes with an electro-mechanically controlled clutch, as well as variable torque transfer between the front and rear axles. That means it can go full RWD when needed. Of course, we wouldn’t expect Mercedes to offer a “drift” button to smoke the rear meats on demand – it’s more about optimal grip, rather than burnouts. Pity.

Finally, there are multiple drive modes offered, which can be selected via the Dynamic Select knob in the cabin. The drive modes include names like Eco, Comfort, Sport, Sport+, and Individual, and the modes affect a variety of systems, branching out into the engine, the transmission, the suspension, and the steering.

Drivetrain Specifications

Engine 3.0-litre 6-cylinder in-line engine with exhaust gas turbocharger and electric auxiliary compressor
Displacement 2,999 cc
Output 435 HP @ 6,100 RPM
Add. output with EQ Boost 22 HP
Peak torque 384 LB-FT @ 1,800-5,800 RPM
Add. torque with EQ Boost 184 LB-FT
Drive system AMG Performance 4MATIC+ all-wheel drive with fully variable torque distribution
Transmission AMG SPEEDSHIFT TCT 9G
Fuel consumption – combined 8.5 l/100 km
CO2 emissions – combined 201 g/km
Acceleration 0-100 km/h 4.5 s
Top speed 250 km/h (155 mph)

Chassis And Handling

  • Independent air ride suspension components
  • Continuously variable dampers
  • Enormous brakes as standard
  • Self-leveling ride height
  • One-touch nose raise for steeply angled drives
  • Variable-ratio steering

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“The AMG CLS 53 4Matic uses an advanced AMG Ride Control+ system, which offers multi-chamber air dampers to keep it all shiny side up. The damping is adjusted by way of two separate valves for the rebound and compression, and AMG matched it with spring tuning that keeps it feeling appropriately sporty.”

To keep this heavy luxury barge feeling as sprightly as physically possible, Mercedes utilizes a fully independent suspension layout with a multi-link set-up in the rear. The headline in this area is the advanced AMG Ride Control+ equipment, which offers multi-chamber air dampers to keep it all shiny side up. The damping is adjusted by way of two separate valves for the rebound and compression, and AMG matched it with spring tuning that keeps it feeling appropriately sporty. It’s also continuously adjustable for the damping, offering harder settings while cruising through the corners to help reduce the car’s inherent body roll.

The air suspension also offers a self-leveling feature for a consistent ride height “regardless of vehicle load.” Another perk is that the driver can raise the front end on demand to help maneuver up highly angled driveways or whatever else might be in the way. Just hit it with one button touch, and you’ll be good to go. The car will then automatically lower back to the normal ride height as you drive along.

Merc also mentions that there are special steering knuckles in front and new load-bearing joints as well, while extra negative camber was added this time around for crisper turn-in characteristics. Speaking of
turning, there’s an AMG speed-sensitive steering on board as well, offering a variable steering rack ratio and more feedback with the sportier drive modes.

Finally, the brakes are appropriately large for the application, measuring in with 370 mm (14.6-inch) by 36 mm (1.4-inch) discs in front, clamped by four-pot calipers. In back, there are 360 mm (14.2-inch) by 26 mm (1-inch) discs, clamped by single-pot calipers.

Prices


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Official pricing was not announced as of this writing, but it’s probably safe to assume it’ll be around the $80,000 mark, considering the current V-8 powered 550 4Matic starts at $77,650 and the fire-breathing CLS 63 S starts at $108,900.

If so inclined, buyers can act early and get into the Exclusive Edition 1 version. The big ticket item here is the Copper Art interior, which adds the color to various interior bits, with copper-colored contrast stitching for the black nappa leather, plus more added to the instrument panel, armrests, center console, door panels, and floor mats. The center console is also done up with carbon fiber, while a Performance steering wheel, a number of “Edition” badges, 64-color ambient lighting, the Memory and Mirror package, and an IWC analogue clock round it out.

Competition

Audi S7


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Truth be told, Mercedes isn’t alone in offering four-door sports machines with coupe-like roof lines. Audi’s take on the formula is the S7, which comes with a handsome exterior that’s rather understated considering what it’s got in store under the hood – namely a 450-horsepower twin-turbo 4.0-liter V-8, which sends power to the ground by way of a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission and permanent all-wheel drive system. Properly motivated, the S7 can hit 60 mph in a scant 4.5 seconds, all while coddling passengers in the utmost luxury. Pricing starts at $81,200.

Read our full review on the 2017 Audi S7.

Porsche Panamera


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Despite a rather questionable take on the four-door coupe styling aesthetic, the Porsche Panamera has plenty in reserve when it comes to performance. Buyers get a turbocharged 3.0-liter V-6 sending power exclusively to the rear axle in the base model, but theAWD and twin-turbo 2.9-liter V-6 in the mid-range model would be a better fit for the AMG CLS. There’s even a hybrid model, if you’re so inclined. If performance and speed are at the top of your priority list, then the Panamera is likely the better buy.

Read our full review on the 2018 Porsche Panamera.

Conclusion


2019 Mercedes-AMG CLS 53 4Matic - image 761052

The latest Mercedes-AMG CLS 53 4Matic is a great example of one of those niche vehicle segments that’s so popular these days. It’s elegant and luxurious, with four doors to get in and out and a well-appointed interior dripping with premium touches. At the same time, it’s sporty and performance-oriented, with loads of go available with every stab of the right pedal and a svelte coupe roof line to boot.

Now, it looks like Merc is stepping down a third path with the model, one that leads towards extra efficiency. Posting a 28-mpg fuel return figure for a machine like this is impressive, and we have no doubt the German brand will look to expand that number in the future.

All told, the Mercedes-AMG CLS 53 4Matic is a great choice for those looking for something that can do it all. If the price is right, it’s definitely worth a drive.

  • Leave it
    • * Faster options already on the table
    • * More comfortable options already on the table
    • * No V-8 grumble from the exhaust pipes

References

Mercedes-Benz CLS


2019 Mercedes-Benz CLS - image 748196

Read our full review on the 2019 Mercedes-Benz CLS.


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Read more Mercedes-Benz news.


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Read more Detroit Auto Show news.

PostHeaderIcon Kia Previews Super Bowl Ad Spot Featuring Emerson Fittipaldi And A Pair Of Stingers

South Korean brand Hyundai is once again returning to the big game this February, dropping a 60-second ad spot during the third quarter of the 52nd Super Bowl between the Philadelphia Eagles and New England Patriots. The ad is set on an old abandoned race track, where we find a pair of Kia Stingers staged up for what we can only assume to be a race. Leaning up against one of the high-powered four-doors is none other than the mutton-chopped two-time Formula One and Indy 500 champion Emerson Fittipaldi. Meanwhile, in the other car, we have a mystery celebrity, who kicks over the Stinger’s twin-turbo 3.3-liter V-6 with a single, slender, be-ringed and nail polished finger.

Kia provides few cues as to who’s driving the other Stinger, merely stating the ad features “two eternally youthful legends who have logged seat time in some of the most powerful and exotic cars in the world.” Based on that description, plus the silver ring and two-tone nail polish, there’s really only one candidate here – Aerosmith lead singer Steven Tyler. It makes sense, considering Tyler’s previous rides have included such insane machines as the Hennessey Venom GT and Shelby Cobra, among others.

Either way, make sure to tune in on February 4th to see the entire 60-second ad spot. Something tells us that rubber will be burned.

As a reminder, the Kia Stinger GT produces 365 horsepower and can hit 60 mph in 4.5 seconds.


References

Kia Stinger


2018 Kia Stinger - image 745723

Read our full review on the 2018 Kia Stinger.


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Read more Kia news.

PostHeaderIcon Porsche Used to Transport $14 Million in Gold – Now That’s Rich!

It’s not exactly the plot for Fast & Furious 9, but it might as well be. A convoy of three Porsche Panameras was given an unusual task by Baird & Co. that’s normally done by armored trucks. Britain’s leading bullion merchants and gold refiners needed to organize a massive shipment of 24 gold bars with a combined value of $13.8 million from its refinery to its new London showroom in Hatton Garden, a distance of 12 miles. Instead of hiring a security company as most companies do, Bard & Co. hired Porsche to get the job done.


“The logistics of the transport involved each Panamera having a driver, a radio operator, and a security specialist”

It was a curious choice to tap Porsche for the job, but the potential for tremendous publicity for both companies was sitting there on a silver platter. So Baird & Co. and Porsche did it. The latter supplied a pair of Porsche Panamera Turbo Sport Turismo and a Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo to do the work normally reserved for armored trucks. The logistics of the transport involved each Panamera having a driver, a radio operator, and a security specialist. The three would work in concert with their colleagues to transport the gold bullion crates that each car was carrying. These crates weighed close to 60 kilos a piece and carried $4.7 million in gold bullion. That’s a lot of weight packed in a very dense package.

The security plan put in place was worthy of a head-of-state. In addition to the three Panameras, the convoy also included a helicopter, a security detail, and a precisely planned and rehearsed route that needed to be executed with absolute precision. Time was also important because, according to Porsche, the longer it took the gold bars to reach their destination, the greater the risk of something going awry.


Porsche Used to Transport $14 Million in Gold - Now That's Rich! - image 763327

At around 11 a.m. local time on Sunday morning, the convoy left the Baird & Co. refinery in route to its destination. A lead car guided the convoy as it snaked through the streets of London and after 40 pulse-pounding minutes, the convoy arrived safely at its destination. Specialist teams on standby at Hatton Garden unloaded the heavy crates from the Panameras, concluding a tense hour of waiting to see if the convoy made it to its destination. One of the most relieved people to see the journey come to an end was Baird & Co. director Nick Hammond. “In this instance, we had a very large shipment of gold to transport – which is quite rare,” he said.

“We had to rely on the cars to be absolutely reliable, to be stable, and to be more than capable of carrying the gold with capacity – in terms of performance – to spare. We didn’t want the vehicles to be anywhere near their limits, which is asking quite a lot. And, despite the phenomenal weight – and the density of the weight – the Panamera had to carry, they performed impeccably.”


Porsche Used to Transport $14 Million in Gold - Now That's Rich! - image 763329
“All’s well that ends well, and in this case, the three Panameras and their air suspension systems deserve a lion’s share of the credit”

All’s well that ends well, and in this case, the three Panameras and their air suspension systems deserve a lion’s share of the credit. It’s not easy to carry a 60-kilo crate with almost $5 million in gold inside it. But the three Porsches managed to do it. Now it’s basking in the glory of the publicity it generated. Well played, Porsche.

References

Porsche Panamera


2018 Porsche Panamera Sport Turismo - image 707721

Read our full review on the 2018 Porsche Panamera Turbo Sport Turismo


2018 Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo - image 733889

Read our full review on the Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo.


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Read more Porsche news.

PostHeaderIcon Video of the Day: Watch the Kia Stinger Level With the Panamara; Kick BMW’s Ass

It really has to suck for BMW to get beat out so badly by a Korean economy brand


PostHeaderIcon Check Out Lexus’ Black Panther Super Bowl Commercial Before The Big Game

Super Bowl 52 is less than two weeks away, with kickoff between the Philadelphia Eagles and New England Patriots scheduled for Sunday, February 4th. And that means its time to ramp up the blockbuster commercials. Lexus is getting ahead of the game with the release of its latest Black Panther spot, which you can view in its entirety right here.

The ad is 60 seconds in length, but a shortened, 30-second iteration is scheduled for the third quarter on Super Bowl Sunday. The ad features the LS 500 F Sport, Lexus’ flagship four-door, as well as the hot-to-trot Lexus LC 500 Coupe, both of which slice and dice through the ad in heroic tire-burning fashion. We also get to watch Black Panther snagging some stolen vibranium before pulling up to a world leadership conference, giving us a preview of the costumes and props from the film.

All told, the ad should do well to expand Lexus’ target audience, which typically ranges from the old to the very old.

Make sure to check out Marvel’s Black Panther movie when it hits U.S. theaters February 16th.


References

Lexus LS


2018 Lexus LS 500 F Sport - image 712551

Read our full review on the 2018 Lexus LS 500 F Sport.

Lexus LC


2018 Lexus LC 500 - image 710825

Read our full review on the 2018 Lexus LC 500 Coupe.


maker logos - image 746643

Read more Lexus news.

PostHeaderIcon Wallpaper of the Day: 2016 Cadillac CTS-V

It’s a good, modern American beast with a luxury badge – It doesn’t get better than this folks — at least not on this side of the pond, anyway!

2016 Cadillac CTS-V


Wallpaper of the Day: 2016 Cadillac CTS-V - image 599728

Read our full review of the 2016 Cadillac CTS-V or check out some more wallpaper-worthy shots below!

PostHeaderIcon Ford to Announce What Cars Get the Axe in the Near Future

Just a week ago Ford Announced that it would be cutting a number of its products in order to recover from its falling profit Margins. What products will be cut remains to be seen, however, we’ll get full disclosure about the product cuts later this year. While nothing is certain, models like the Ford Taurus, C-Max, and even the Lincoln MKZ are all suspect with low sales numbers and falling interest. Of course, Ford is on a mission to cut out $14 billion in costs, and the SUV craze is going strong, so this shouldn’t be much of a surprise. There’s a lot more to it, though, so keep reading to find out more.


2017 Lincoln MKZ - image 655938
“Part of this plan includes cutting costs amounting to $14 billion, as well as simplifying orderable products”

Ford CEO Jim Hackett didn’t divulge more details about the product cuts, but the temperature within Ford suggests that the company is keen on adopting Hackett’s plan to build “smart vehicles for a smart world.” Part of this plan includes cutting costs amounting to $14 billion, as well as simplifying orderable products, and streamlining the entire model lineup to feature higher-margin segments that can be profitable in all parts of the world.

The company’s chief financial officer, Bob Shanks, said that the company’s 2017 pretax profits fell 19 percent to $8.4 billion. That reduced the company’s operating profit margin to five percent from 6.7 percent in 2016. In addition, the company’s fourth-quarter adjusted pretax profits also fell 19 percent to $1.7 billion, a product of higher of steel and aluminum prices, as well as adverse currency rates. The company’s fortunes in Europe weren’t all that different as its pretax profit dropped by an incredible 66 percent to just $56 million in the fourth quarter. The numbers are worse for the entire year as the company’s pretax profit fell by a staggering 81 percent to just $234 million.

Some things needed to change for Ford to reverse the negative momentum. It just so happened that small cars will pay the price for that. Ford’s new direction adds weight to persistent rumors of the demise of Ford’s sedans. Last month, rumors surfaced that Ford was seriously considering cutting the Fusion sedan from its U.S. lineup. Sales of the sedan are still strong, but they’ve dropped significantly relative to its sales volume in past years. The Fusion example is a small sample of a growing trend throughout the industry. Sedans are losing their appeal because more customers now prefer crossovers and SUVs.


2014 Ford Fusion - image 525001
“The numbers are worse for the entire year as the company’s pretax profit fell by a staggering 81 percent to just $234 million.”

That said, small cars aren’t going to be completely extinct from Ford’s global lineup. The Fusion, for example, will still be sold in the Chinese market. The European market will also still get its share of small cars, beginning with the new Focus hatchback, which is scheduled to debut later this year. But for the most part, these small cars will likely play supplementary roles to crossovers, SUVs, and self-driving cars that Ford’s planning to turn into the foundation of its vehicular lineup.

References

Ford Taurus


2013 Ford Taurus - image 399396

Read our full review on the 2017 Ford Taurus.

Ford C-Max


2013 Ford C-Max - image 509485

Read our full review on the 2017 Ford C-Max.

Ford Fusion


2014 Ford Fusion - image 525009

Read our full review on the 2017 Ford Fusion.

Lincoln MKZ


2017 Lincoln MKZ - image 726176

Read our full review on the 2017 Lincoln MKZ.


maker logos - image 744958

Read more Ford news.

PostHeaderIcon An AWD Version of the Tesla Model 3 Could Break Cover in Spring 2018

An all-wheel-drive Tesla Model 3 has been in the cards for some time. We all know it’s coming; we just don’t know when it’s coming. Turns out, it could arrive sooner than we thought because Tesla appears to be rolling out the dual-motor all-wheel drive Model 3 as early as the Spring of 2018. Unless your calendars are acting up, the dual-motor Model 3 could arrive as early as March 2018 or as late as June 2018.


An AWD Version of the Tesla Model 3 Could Break Cover in Spring 2018 - image 762981

The current timetable for the all-wheel drive Model 3 is intriguing. Spring 2018 is just around the corner so it could really happen anytime. Then again, we’ve seen this song-and-dance from Tesla before. It’s usually accompanied by delay announcements, so I’m taking the current schedule with a grain of salt.


An AWD Version of the Tesla Model 3 Could Break Cover in Spring 2018 - image 762980

Then again, that doesn’t mean that we’re not seeing a dual-motor Model 3. It’s still happening because Tesla appears to have leaked it in its online configurator for the Model 3. It’s still available by invite, but those who were able to play around with it found a dual motor option listed just below the standard rear-wheel drive drivetrain. That same option is accompanied by a note saying that it’s arriving in “Spring ’18.”

If you need more proof, another image shows a Model 3 with two motors, one on the front axle and another on the rear axle. According to a Reddit user, the image was found in the HTML code of Tesla’s recently updated configurator.

Franz showing off the Model 3

Posted by Tesla Owners Los Angeles on Friday, January 19, 2018

Take these pieces of evidence however you like, but it’s looking more likely that a dual-motor Tesla Model 3 is arriving sooner than we expected. That doesn’t mean that it’s arriving on schedule, though, because production delays are common occurrences for Tesla. Even if it doesn’t meet its target, it wouldn’t be too bad to get a delay. The important thing is that a dual-motor Model 3 is coming.

Editor’s Note: There has also been what some are saying to be a “performance version” of the Model 3 spotted somewhere in California as posted by TeslaOwnersLA and it was also found that Tesla has registered 19 dual-motor VINs in recent days as shown in the social embeds above

References

Tesla Model 3


2018 Tesla Model 3 - image 727971

Read our full review on the 2018 Tesla Model 3.


maker logos - image 746180

Read more Tesla news.

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