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Lincoln MKX Concept announces impending launch in China

Luxury Cars - 8 hours 48 min ago

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Lincoln MKX Concept

Lincoln has finally dropped the details on the MKX Concept after a few days of teasing. Set for a very important global debut at the 2014 Beijing Motor Show, we're going to have to see this conceptualized version of the third-generation MKX in person before we can draw any real conclusions on the effectiveness of its design.

One of the things Lincoln will need to do to succeed is deliver something to customers that's unique to the brand's vehicles, which are exclusively rebadged models from parent company Ford. We're not sure this is going to be distinctive enough.

Unlike its last new vehicle, the Navigator, the work done on the MKX is smooth and refined. The stance of the vehicle, with its 21-inch wheels, is aggressive enough. Viewed from the profile, the overhangs appear rather short, while character lines keep it from looking slabsided. In front, we might be witnessing the cleanest interpretation yet of Lincoln's twin grilles. The headlights are slim and stylish, and we're digging the shape and style of the mirrors, which feature integrated turn signals that outline the mirror cap.

That said, the overall look still reminds us too strongly of the Ford Edge Concept that was shown in LA. A number of key styling elements, like the taillights and the shape of the greenhouse, have more Edge DNA in them than we'd like to see. The MKX does have an interesting styling to its roof, although we can't say that this treatment would make it into production.

In any case, this is a clean, stylish and attractive piece of design. Certainly, Lincoln seems to be coming to grips with its styling language, adding some of the very best cues from the upcoming MKC to the MKX Concept. All things considered, had the MKX debuted before the Edge Concept, we'd probably be a lot more impressed.

Unfortunately, we don't have any interior images to share, and Lincoln is completely mum on the details. Here's hoping that the interior is attractive enough to create some distance between the MKX and the Edge. And we hope the same can be said of mechanical details.

All things considered, then, it's time we asked what you thought. Take a look at the full gallery of images at the top of the page, read through the press release below, and then head into Comments and let us know if Lincoln's handiwork is up to snuff. What do you think they should change, and what's your favorite design aspect on the MKX Concept? Have your say below.

Continue reading Lincoln MKX Concept announces impending launch in China

Lincoln MKX Concept announces impending launch in China originally appeared on Autoblog on Sun, 20 Apr 2014 00:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Mercedes-Benz Concept Coupe SUV blends sleekness and utility in Beijing

SUV Reviews - Sat, 04/19/2014 - 23:00

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Mercedes-Benz Concept Coupe SUV

Automakers attempting to mix the sexiness of a coupe and the utility of an SUV don't appear to be going away. BMW arguably created the niche with its X6, and Acura latched onto it with the awkward ZDX. Mercedes-Benz might be taking the best stab at the form yet with the Concept Coupe SUV, which debuts at the 2014 Beijing Motor Show.

At over 16 feet long, over six feet wide, and riding on 22-inch wheels, the Concept Coupe SUV is an imposing vehicle. The front of the concept is dominated by tons of chrome mesh, and the three-pointed Mercedes star stands proudly in the middle. The hood features some very pronounced creases to lead the eye to that big front end.

Compared to the eye-arresting expanse of chrome at the front, the rest of the styling is surprisingly soft. The profile shows a sweeping curve starting at the A-pillar and ending just above the taillights. It's a sporty look but still slightly weird on a vehicle with SUV proportions. From the rear-three quarters perspective, the design appears to be nothing but curving lines and glass. The back uses simple, horizontal lines with a strip of lights wrapping around, and flat oval exhaust pipes to complete the elegant look below. There are no photos of the interior so that remains a secret for now.

The concept is propelled by a twin-turbocharged, 3.0-liter V6 with 333 horsepower and 354 pound-feet of torque. It routes through Mercedes' 9G-Tronic nine-speed automatic gearbox to send power to all four wheels.

Recently, Mercedes is treating concepts as thinly veiled previews of future vehicles, and it seems the Concept Coupe SUV is no different. In fact, the company goes so far in the release to say: "With this concept car, Mercedes-Benz is announcing the possible expansion of the previously uniform SUV off-roader family." It's not hard to read between the lines. Scroll down to get all the details.

Continue reading Mercedes-Benz Concept Coupe SUV blends sleekness and utility in Beijing

Mercedes-Benz Concept Coupe SUV blends sleekness and utility in Beijing originally appeared on Autoblog on Sat, 19 Apr 2014 22:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Mercedes-Benz Concept Coupe SUV blends sleekness and utility in Beijing

Luxury Cars - Sat, 04/19/2014 - 23:00

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Mercedes-Benz Concept Coupe SUV

Automakers attempting to mix the sexiness of a coupe and the utility of an SUV don't appear to be going away. BMW arguably created the niche with its X6, and Acura latched onto it with the awkward ZDX. Mercedes-Benz might be taking the best stab at the form yet with the Concept Coupe SUV, which debuts at the 2014 Beijing Motor Show.

At over 16 feet long, over six feet wide, and riding on 22-inch wheels, the Concept Coupe SUV is an imposing vehicle. The front of the concept is dominated by tons of chrome mesh, and the three-pointed Mercedes star stands proudly in the middle. The hood features some very pronounced creases to lead the eye to that big front end.

Compared to the eye-arresting expanse of chrome at the front, the rest of the styling is surprisingly soft. The profile shows a sweeping curve starting at the A-pillar and ending just above the taillights. It's a sporty look but still slightly weird on a vehicle with SUV proportions. From the rear-three quarters perspective, the design appears to be nothing but curving lines and glass. The back uses simple, horizontal lines with a strip of lights wrapping around, and flat oval exhaust pipes to complete the elegant look below. There are no photos of the interior so that remains a secret for now.

The concept is propelled by a twin-turbocharged, 3.0-liter V6 with 333 horsepower and 354 pound-feet of torque. It routes through Mercedes' 9G-Tronic nine-speed automatic gearbox to send power to all four wheels.

Recently, Mercedes is treating concepts as thinly veiled previews of future vehicles, and it seems the Concept Coupe SUV is no different. In fact, the company goes so far in the release to say: "With this concept car, Mercedes-Benz is announcing the possible expansion of the previously uniform SUV off-roader family." It's not hard to read between the lines. Scroll down to get all the details.

Continue reading Mercedes-Benz Concept Coupe SUV blends sleekness and utility in Beijing

Mercedes-Benz Concept Coupe SUV blends sleekness and utility in Beijing originally appeared on Autoblog on Sat, 19 Apr 2014 22:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Jeep does Renegade Chinese-style with Zi You Xia design concept

SUV Reviews - Sat, 04/19/2014 - 22:01

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Jeep Renegade Zi You Xia design concept

As we mentioned, Jeep is bringing a quartet of concepts to the Beijing Motor Show this year. Its largest model, the Grand Cherokee, is nowhere to be found, but its smallest is. That, of course, would be the new Renegade, which has been done up as the Zi You Xia design concept.

Taking its name from the Mandarin word (or words) for "rebel," the Zi You Xia takes its inspiration from the National Centre for the Performing Arts in Beijing, with a Warm Chocolate Gray paintjob with contrasting dark bronze trim. The roof, grille and mirror caps are color-keyed to match the rest of the exterior, riding on 20-inch alloys in the same dark bronze finish.

Inside it's all Piano Black, Anodized Copper and brown leather with plaid fabric inserts. Scope it out in the high-res image gallery above and the press release below.

Continue reading Jeep does Renegade Chinese-style with Zi You Xia design concept

Jeep does Renegade Chinese-style with Zi You Xia design concept originally appeared on Autoblog on Sat, 19 Apr 2014 21:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Jeep Wrangler Sundancer design liberally applies bronzer

SUV Reviews - Sat, 04/19/2014 - 22:00

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Jeep Wrangler Sundancer design concept

Jeep is bringing a total of four concepts to the Beijing Motor Show, and the one you see here is called Sundancer (no relation to the Sundance, of course), based, as you can plainly see, on the Wrangler.

To create the Sundancer - a name that riffs off of nearly forgotten Plymouths of yore - Jeep coated the Wrangler in a tri-coat Chocolate Brown metallic paint with gold accents, bronze fender flares and bronze-tinted glass. The bumpers have been color-keyed to the rest of the bodywork, and the 20-inch billet aluminum wheels have a tone-on-tone gold finish.

Inside, it's been outfitted with Axis II perforated and Berry Baltique semi-aniline leather with lace stitching on the control surfaces with gold trim throughout. All of which makes the toughest model in the Jeep lineup look more like a box of high-end sweets. Whether that's a good thing or not, we leave up to you.

Continue reading Jeep Wrangler Sundancer design liberally applies bronzer

Jeep Wrangler Sundancer design liberally applies bronzer originally appeared on Autoblog on Sat, 19 Apr 2014 21:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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BMW Vision Future Luxury arrives in Beijing dressed to the nines

Luxury Cars - Sat, 04/19/2014 - 19:00

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BMW Vision Future Luxury Concept

BMW Vision Future Luxury ConceptAlmost two weeks ago, we reported that BMW may be bringing a concept to the 2014 Beijing Motor Show that could herald a flagship 9 Series model that would be better suited to do battle with the tip-top of the Mercedes-Benz S-Class range than the current 7 Series. Well, here it is. This is the Vision Future Luxury Concept, and straight away, it looks suited to the role of ultra-luxury flagship.

In our original story, we reported that the Beijing concept would wear styling similar to the Pininfarina Gran Lusso Coupe that was shown in Villa d'Este nearly a year ago. Unlike that car, the Vision Future Luxury sports four doors, although its roofline plunges aggressively enough for it to be considered a four-door coupe. That doesn't mean it will compromise on rear-seat space, however. Judging by the length of the rear doors alone, this is a very large vehicle.

Its styling, though, is, as we reported, quite familiar. We can see the evolution of the Concours' concept's styling, with a narrower grille that still leads up into the hood. The thin headlights use BMW's Laserlight technology while retaining a shape similar to the Gran Lusso, and the lower intake is dominated by a carbon-fiber air deflector on both ends. BMW's Air Breather system can be found behind the front wheels, adding an accent along the lower portion of the doors. In back, organic LED lighting is used for the super-slim taillights.

Considering that this car has "Luxury" in its name, the cabin should be a pretty nice place to spend time. There's no shortage of concept car styling, but the overall sense of design looks like a nice evolution of the styling we see on newer Bimmers. BMW opted for a layered design to the interior materials, using carbon fabric as a base before adding an aluminum support layer. Finally, wood and aniline leather are added, as needed. There's no shortage of exposed carbon fiber, but it's found in such tasteful doses that it looks quite nice.

Being a concept, BMW took the opportunity to include a few next-gen interior technologies. A new head-up display projects information onto the road, highlighting certain buildings or road signs, for example. Rear-seat occupants, meanwhile, have access to a detachable Touch Command Tablet, which can access BMW's Luxury Concierge Service, as well as games, the Internet and trip information. There are two other seat-mounted displays for rear-seat occupants, as well.

Make no mistake, this might be a wild, out-there concept, and there's no talk of what might potentially power it, but much of its look seems very much grounded in reality. Perhaps, like the Vision concept that went before it, we'll be talking about this fullsize, four-door coupe for the next few years. Take a look above to see what BMW's put together for the PRC's annual Auto China show, and then scroll down for the official press release on the Vision Future Luxury concept.

Continue reading BMW Vision Future Luxury arrives in Beijing dressed to the nines

BMW Vision Future Luxury arrives in Beijing dressed to the nines originally appeared on Autoblog on Sat, 19 Apr 2014 18:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Ford confirms Everest SUV production for China

SUV Reviews - Sat, 04/19/2014 - 13:01

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Ford Everest

According to Ford, the Chinese SUV segment grew by 49 percent in 2013, and the Blue Oval held a 4.5 percent market share. At the 2014 Beijing Motor Show, Ford is showing the Everest SUV that, while just a concept for now, will go into production in the near future.

The Everest is a big, brawny seven-seat SUV that mixes solid, chiseled styling and contemporary Ford design cues. Up front there is an angular version of the trapezoidal grille and sharp, wraparound headlights. The beltline rises in the rear to make the back appear higher than the front. The rear seems just as chiseled, with the taillights resting in jagged scallops. There is no doubt that this concept means to look rugged, and ready for rough roads - the whole thing looks pretty great.

The truck was penned by Ford's Asia Pacific design and engineering team in Australia, and it was first shown in Sydney last year. Ford's JMC joint venture will build the truck for the Chinese market, and it will be sold at Ford dealers there. The Blue Oval isn't hinting at what powers the production version yet, but it reportedly shares some components with the foreign-market Ranger.

Don't get up any hopes of the Everest coming here. "We have no plans for it at the moment," said Ford spokesperson William Mattiace, about its US prospects. Scroll down to read the official press blast.

Continue reading Ford confirms Everest SUV production for China

Ford confirms Everest SUV production for China originally appeared on Autoblog on Sat, 19 Apr 2014 12:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Mazda recalls 109k Tribute models for rust issue

SUV Reviews - Fri, 04/18/2014 - 17:04

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2004 Mazda Tribute

The Mazda Tribute is being hit with a similar recall as its platform-mate the Ford Escape underwent a few weeks ago. Mazda is recalling 109,000 Tributes from model years 2001 to 2004. On the trucks, the subframe can rust from road salt, potentially causing the lower control arm to detach. If this happens, a loss of steering control could occur.

Mazda is adding a reinforcement crossbrace for added strength on the affected models. The recall covers Tributes currently registered in or originally sold in 20 northern states and Washington, DC, where road salt is used.

The reinforcement braces aren't available yet to do the repair. Mazda will send a letter in May to owners of affected vehicles that will inform them of the problem, and a second letter telling them when the parts will be ready. Scroll down to read the full recall press release.

Continue reading Mazda recalls 109k Tribute models for rust issue

Mazda recalls 109k Tribute models for rust issue originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 18 Apr 2014 16:04:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Rolls-Royce shows bespoke Pinnacle Travel Phantom in Beijing

Luxury Cars - Fri, 04/18/2014 - 15:33

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Rolls-Royce Pinnacle Travel Phantom

Rolls-Royce is exclusive. Rolls-Royce's Bespoke Collection, though, takes that exclusivity to the highest levels, representing the very finest work that the craftsmen at the company's Goodwood factory are capable of producing. With the Pinnacle Travel Phantom, set to be shown at the 2014 Beijing Motor Show, Rolls-Royce may have finally outdone itself. Apparently, the puzzling name (as well as the reason it's being shown in Beijing) comes from China's second consecutive year as the largest outbound travel market in the world.

The one-off custom job wears a gorgeous two-tone paint scheme, with a section of Silver Sand and a lot of Madeira Red paint. The intricate coachline includes a few small details that just add to the exterior's specialness.

The cabin, though, is where the work has really been done. It has throw pillows, for crying out loud. Ignoring the silvery poofs on the back seats, the cabin is dominated by Morello Red and Seashell leather, the former of which is on the seats, doors and interior partition. The woodwork, is some of the most beautiful we've seen from Rolls-Royce, which is saying something.

According to Rolls-Royce, each piece of wood veneer is laser cut and then hand-assembled by a Rolls-Royce woodworker into the designs seen on this car. There are 230 pieces used throughout the car's cabin.

Take a look up top for the official gallery from Rolls-Royce, and then scroll below for a short press release.

Continue reading Rolls-Royce shows bespoke Pinnacle Travel Phantom in Beijing

Rolls-Royce shows bespoke Pinnacle Travel Phantom in Beijing originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 18 Apr 2014 14:33:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Building a better Pinewood Derby car with science

Automotive Technology - Fri, 04/18/2014 - 13:45

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Screencap from a video explaining the science behind building a Pinewood Derby-winning car.

Every corner of human endeavor has its researchers, and that includes activities that we might think are just supposed to be fun for kids, like pinewood derbies. In case you don't know, a pinewood derby where kids build a car out of a block of wood, add some nails for axles and plastic wheels and then race them head-to-head on a length of track with an elevated starting line. It's all about kids having fun with gravity and little chunks of timber.

Except it isn't at all, because dads are involved, and that means that winning pinewood derby cars use the kind of science and technology real car enthusiasts are familiar with: center-of-mass studies, polished axles, lightweight wheels and copious use of graphite.

YouTube regular Mark Rober gives an excellent explanation of what goes into a champion derby run, with science help from Dr. Scott Acton, a physicist with spacecraft and defense component maker Ball Aerospace. But Rober mostly uses children's blocks to lay it all out, and then he wins, which are things we can all understand. You'll find an education in the video below.

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Building a better Pinewood Derby car with science originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 18 Apr 2014 12:45:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Jaguar sends off XK with limited-run Final 50 edition

Luxury Cars - Fri, 04/18/2014 - 12:33

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Jaguar XK Final 50 Edition

The Jaguar XK coupe and convertible are pointed at the production sunset, and the cars that will end their retail lives in the US will be the dubbed the XK Final Fifty Limited Edition. As the name implies there will be fifty of them made, 25 of the fixed-roof variety, 25 of the droptop.

As the name doesn't imply, however, they'll be based on the XKR and be injected with liberal doses of XKR-S and XKR-S GT: the 510-horsepower V8 from the XKR will be mated to normally optional items like the Dynamic and Performance Packs, machined front suspension components from the XKR-S and a 10-millimeter lower ride height, the louvered hood from the XKR-S GT and Vortex 20-inch forged wheels. The sheetmetal gets a bath in Ultimate Black paint "with special trim" and badged door sill plates. Convertibles will come black roofs, but the Performance Active Exhaust will keep you apprised of the 5.0-liter V8 bellows no matter which car you choose.

They'll go into production this summer and hit dealerships in the fall. There's a lengthy press release below with more info on how this cat will sing its swan song.

Continue reading Jaguar sends off XK with limited-run Final 50 edition

Jaguar sends off XK with limited-run Final 50 edition originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 18 Apr 2014 11:33:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Alfieri headed for production based on strong Maserati sales

Luxury Cars - Fri, 04/18/2014 - 11:30

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Maserati Alfieri concept

Maserati has been on a heck of a product surge recently. After years of subsiding on versions of the previous Quattroporte and the aging GranTurismo, the Modense automaker rolled out the new Quattroporte the year before last, the Ghibli last year, it will introduce the Levante crossover next year and - according to the latest intel - will begin production of the Alfieri sports car the year after that.

The Alfieri concept debuted just last month at the Geneva Motor Show, taking the form of a two-door sports car foreshadowing the brand's new design language. Reception was positive, but it appears that sales of Maserati's existing models is what's giving the Alfieri the green light.

According to Automotive News, citing an interview given by Maserati chief Harald Wester on Bloomberg Television, the brand has been getting 3,500 orders per month, putting it on track to sell 42,000 units this year - nearly three times as much as the 15,400 it sold in 2013. The profits generated off those orders could be enough by themselves to offset the losses which Fiat is expected to record this year based on flagging sales for the Fiat, Alfa Romeo and Jeep brands in Europe.

Sources says that it wouldn't take much for the Alfieri to be put into production. If and when it does, it would target the likes of the Porsche 911 and Jaguar F-Type, but we wouldn't be surprised to see it ditch the old V8 from the GranTurismo and adopt the newer twin-turbocharged V6 or V8 engines that power the latest QP and Ghibli.

Alfieri headed for production based on strong Maserati sales originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 18 Apr 2014 10:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Audi prepping minor refresh for S6

Luxury Cars - Thu, 04/17/2014 - 19:40

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Audi S6

Audi is well underway with testing for all of the refreshed versions of its A6-based sedan. We've already shown you shots of the Euro-spec A6 Allroad (which will wear some of its styling with our US-spec A6 sedan), and now we have some shots of a car that will actually arrive in the United States - the S6.

Like the Allroad, this will be quite a modest refresh, with tweaks to the headlights and taillights, as well as some slightly revised front and rear fascias. The headlights should get a new LED DRL pattern, although we doubt the changes will be much more drastic than that.

As with the Allroad, it seems likely that Audi will make a few very small changes to the interior, while the MMI infotainment system should also see an update. Changes under the hood, though, are more difficult to guess. That said, minor changes could be in store, but don't expect a dramatic increase in power or performance.

Audi prepping minor refresh for S6 originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 17 Apr 2014 18:40:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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2015 Infiniti QX80 gets a minor refresh, fancy new trim

SUV Reviews - Thu, 04/17/2014 - 18:20

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2015 Infiniti QX80

Infiniti revealed an ever-so-slightly refreshed QX80 alongside its Q70 luxury sedan this morning in New York. The biggest news for the brand's fullsize SUV is the addition of a range-topping trim level, unimaginatively dubbed the QX80 Limited.

The Big 80 sports a couple of styling tweaks in an effort to bring its appearance more in line with the brand's current design language. The "double-arch" grille with mesh inserts we first viewed on the Q50 now adorns the front fascia, and the head and taillights have gone full-LED. Still, it's hard to call this SUV anything but ugly. It's bulbous and almost brutish, which aren't generally words you want to have to use when talking about any kind of luxury vehicle.

There aren't many updates inside or to the drivetrain, either. Like the Q70, Infiniti has added a couple of new tech features, such as its Predictive Forward Collision Warning system and High Beam Assist. Although it's getting a bit long in the tooth, the interior remains nice, with lots of wood and leather all around. The SUV continues to use a 5.6-liter V8, which produces 400 horsepower and 413 pound-feet of torque, mated to a seven-speed automatic transmission.

The Limited trim is an answer to the Range Rover Autobiography and the Mercedes-Benz GL-Class Designo trims, which both top their respective lines. The cabin of the Limited comes with a unique Truffle Brown interior environment, which employs a combination of brown, black and silver leather, as well as real Ash trim featuring a matte finish and an Ultrasuede headliner. On the outside, smoked head and taillights, dark chrome trim and big 22-inch wheels will help to set the vehicle apart.

The 2015 QX80 will go on sale in the fall. Check out our high-res image gallery and the press release below if you're looking for more.

Continue reading 2015 Infiniti QX80 gets a minor refresh, fancy new trim

2015 Infiniti QX80 gets a minor refresh, fancy new trim originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 17 Apr 2014 17:20:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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2015 Infiniti QX80 gets a minor refresh, fancy new trim

Luxury Cars - Thu, 04/17/2014 - 18:20

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2015 Infiniti QX80

Infiniti revealed an ever-so-slightly refreshed QX80 alongside its Q70 luxury sedan this morning in New York. The biggest news for the brand's fullsize SUV is the addition of a range-topping trim level, unimaginatively dubbed the QX80 Limited.

The Big 80 sports a couple of styling tweaks in an effort to bring its appearance more in line with the brand's current design language. The "double-arch" grille with mesh inserts we first viewed on the Q50 now adorns the front fascia, and the head and taillights have gone full-LED. Still, it's hard to call this SUV anything but ugly. It's bulbous and almost brutish, which aren't generally words you want to have to use when talking about any kind of luxury vehicle.

There aren't many updates inside or to the drivetrain, either. Like the Q70, Infiniti has added a couple of new tech features, such as its Predictive Forward Collision Warning system and High Beam Assist. Although it's getting a bit long in the tooth, the interior remains nice, with lots of wood and leather all around. The SUV continues to use a 5.6-liter V8, which produces 400 horsepower and 413 pound-feet of torque, mated to a seven-speed automatic transmission.

The Limited trim is an answer to the Range Rover Autobiography and the Mercedes-Benz GL-Class Designo trims, which both top their respective lines. The cabin of the Limited comes with a unique Truffle Brown interior environment, which employs a combination of brown, black and silver leather, as well as real Ash trim featuring a matte finish and an Ultrasuede headliner. On the outside, smoked head and taillights, dark chrome trim and big 22-inch wheels will help to set the vehicle apart.

The 2015 QX80 will go on sale in the fall. Check out our high-res image gallery and the press release below if you're looking for more.

Continue reading 2015 Infiniti QX80 gets a minor refresh, fancy new trim

2015 Infiniti QX80 gets a minor refresh, fancy new trim originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 17 Apr 2014 17:20:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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2015 Audi RS7 Dynamic Edition is a pretty car for a pretty penny

Luxury Cars - Thu, 04/17/2014 - 18:00

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Audi RS7 Dynamic Edition

Making its world debut at the New York Auto Show, and commanding a $40,250 premium over the base RS7, is Audi's new 2015 RS7 Dynamic Edition that arrives with an MSRP of $146,045 (including destination and delivery). The range-topping hatchback is designed to showcase Audi's exclusive program, which allows customers to choose choose from the automaker's long list of options and then take the customization one step further with bespoke paintwork, upholstery, bodywork and wheels.

The interior features Black Valcona leather seats with Crimson Red honeycomb stitching, and matching Crimson Red seat belts. The contrasting color is carried through to the stitching on the dashboard, center armrest, door panels, shift boot and center console. Carbon fiber inlays provide additional contrast. The exterior is offering in four colors (Ibis White, Suzuka Gray metallic, Daytona Gray pearl and Phantom Black pearl), with each arriving with performance-oriented DRC suspension (with three-stage adjustable dampers), 21-inch Gloss Black wheels, Tornado Red painted brake calipers and sport exhaust. A carbon fiber front splitter, rear diffuser and carbon fiber engine cover complete the package.

Like the standard RS7, the Dynamic Edition arrives with a twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 rated at 560 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque. With an eight-speed automatic transmission, running through Audi's Quattro permanent all-wheel drive and a sport differential, the four-passenger vehicle will crack the 60 mph acceleration benchmark in a reported 3.7 seconds - and, thanks to cylinder-on-demand technology, it avoids a gas-guzzler tax. The RS7 Dynamic Edition arrives at dealerships in early summer.

Continue reading 2015 Audi RS7 Dynamic Edition is a pretty car for a pretty penny

2015 Audi RS7 Dynamic Edition is a pretty car for a pretty penny originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 17 Apr 2014 17:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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2015 Infiniti Q70 stretches out in NYC

Luxury Cars - Thu, 04/17/2014 - 16:39

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2015 Infiniti Q70

Infiniti released its refreshed Q70 (the car formerly known as "M") in New York this morning. The luxury sedan is brings with it, quite literally, a big change: it's now the only vehicle in its segment to offer both long- and short-wheelbase options here in the US (other automakers do this in China). Currently, the two-wheelbase sedan strategy is exclusive to the ranks of fullsize players like the BMW 7 Series, Audi A8, etc.

Infiniti has elongated the standard Q70's wheelbase from 114.2 inches to 120.1 inches, in doing so lengthening the car 7.3 inches overall. For the sake of comparison, a standard wheelbase Audi A8 runs 117.8 inches, so the Q70 is no slouch. The extension mostly benefits rear-seat occupants, who are treated to an extra 5.6 inches of legroom. We think the enlargement improves the car's aesthetic, as well.

In addition to the long-wheelbase option, there are a few other tweaks in store for 2015. New head and taillights are the biggest changes, with full LEDs in the back and LED accents in front. Aspects currently seen on the smaller Q50 are evident, as well, such as the "double-arch" grille that comes with mesh-finish inserts. The fascia also includes a new front bumper with integrated foglights. Interior changes seem to be fairly minimal, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. The outgoing Q70 had a spacious (if dated), luxurious cabin with all kinds of high-quality materials.

Infiniti also added its Predictive Forward Collision Warning system to the Q70, which warns drivers of potential risks beyond their field of view, as well as its stellar AroundView Monitor system, which makes parking a breeze.

Mechanical changes are minimal. The base 3.7-liter V6 still pumps out 330 horsepower and 270 pound-feet of torque, and the 5.6-liter V8 retains its 420 hp and 417 lb-ft. Both engines will be available on the long-wheelbase version (although the V8 will be slightly less powerful, producing only 416 hp and 414 lb-ft). A seven-speed automatic remains the only transmission across the board. The Q70 Hybrid, which employs a 302-hp, 3.5-liter V6, will not be available in long-wheelbase form.

For more info, check out Infiniti's rather extensive press release below.

Continue reading 2015 Infiniti Q70 stretches out in NYC

2015 Infiniti Q70 stretches out in NYC originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 17 Apr 2014 15:39:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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BMW offering Track Handling Package for 2 Series

Luxury Cars - Thu, 04/17/2014 - 15:20

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BMW 228i Track Handling Package

After getting a chance to drive the BMW M235i earlier this year, we mentioned our regret at not being able to sample the lighter and less powerful 228i Coupe. We'd like to have seen how close the latter could get to the former, noting that "there's a lot of room for upgrades with the $11,000 retail difference." BMW is closing that performance gap slightly, announcing that a Track Handling Package will join the options sheet for the 2015 228i Coupe.

The group bolts on Variable Sport Steering, Adaptive M Suspension and M Sport Brakes behind new 18-inch lightweight wheels wearing Michelin Pilot Super Sport tires. There's no change to the 240-horsepower four-cylinder, but a coupe so equipped should be able to do plenty more with the horses it has thanks to a faster steering rack, sharper handling due to additional sensors and a ten-millimeter drop in ride height, and larger brakes and discs.

BMW has used the New York Auto Show as a venue to introduce the new Track Handling Package, and it will roll onto showroom floors in July and pricing will be announced sometime between now and then. Takers can get it with both the six-speed manual and eight-speed Sport Automatic, see it in the high-res image gallery above, and read about it in the press release below.

Continue reading BMW offering Track Handling Package for 2 Series

BMW offering Track Handling Package for 2 Series originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 17 Apr 2014 14:20:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Maserati surprises Manhattan with Centennial edition GranTurismo

Luxury Cars - Thu, 04/17/2014 - 14:20

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Maserati GranTurismo MC Centennial Edition

The GranTurismo may be getting a little long in the proverbial tooth, but it hasn't quite been a century just yet. It has, however, been a hundred years since Maserati was originally founded, and to celebrate that milestone, the Modenese automaker has rolled in to the New York Auto Show this year with a pair of special editions. Available in either coupe or convertible form, the MC Centennial Editions arrived as a surprise just as the Alfieri concept was a month ago in Geneva, albeit somewhat less revolutionary.

The special editions are differentiated from any other by their paint scheme, special wheels, revamped interior and special badging throughout. Magma red and Inchiostro blue - the colors of the city of Bologna where the company was founded a century ago - are new to the Maserati catalog, and come with a choice of wheel options with special logos at the center. The interior color is specified to complement the exterior with red, white or blue trim and carbon-fiber accents.

Power comes from the same 4.7-liter V8 as the GranTurismo MC Stradale or GranCabrio Sport, driving 454 horsepower to the rear wheels through a six-speed automatic transmission. That's said to be enough to propel either coupe or convertible to a top speed of 185 miles per hour, and comes coupled with Brembo brakes and MC sport suspension. Deliveries commence in July, but you can scope it out here in the gallery of live images from the show floor above, the galleries of stock images below and the press release below that.

Continue reading Maserati surprises Manhattan with Centennial edition GranTurismo

Maserati surprises Manhattan with Centennial edition GranTurismo originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 17 Apr 2014 13:20:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Land Rover Discovery Sport officially announced for production

SUV Reviews - Thu, 04/17/2014 - 11:39

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Land Rover Discovery Vision Concept

Land Rover unveiled its Discovery Vision concept (pictured above) at the New York Auto Show. Now the company has announced that the first vehicle to wear some of the concept's styling is going to be the new Discovery Sport. The Sport is the newest member of a whole new family of Disco models that LR has in the works.

Land Rover says that the Discovery Sport will go on sale as a premium compact SUV in 2015. The company claims in its release that: "This will be the most versatile and capable SUV in its segment and is the first expression of the Discovery Vision Concept unveiled here in New York." We don't have any images to go on just yet, aside from the concept car cues, but we do know the new model is likely to be a replacement for the aging LR2.

The Discovery Vision is a seven-passenger SUV concept is meant to show the general look of a whole family of new vehicles from Land Rover, including the smaller Sport. It's expected that a larger model will be used as a replacement for the current LR4/Discovery. Scroll down for LR's entire tease about the Discovery Sport.

Continue reading Land Rover Discovery Sport officially announced for production

Land Rover Discovery Sport officially announced for production originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 17 Apr 2014 10:39:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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