ACB: 2014 BMW M3 Exhaust Note

Bimmerpost.com has released a video of a camouflaged 2014 BMW M3 driving around. The most peculiar part is that it sounds like there is a V6, not an inline 6, under the hood. Normally, this would be blasphemy, and large mobs would form, pitchforks in hand. But after the introduction of turbos, M SUVs, and general weight gain, can anyone really be surprised that “M” may abandon its remaining calling card?

Source: Bimmerpost

Sliver of Hope

Car enthusiasts worldwide have mourned Lotus’ decision to end production of simple, lightweight sportscars. However, a savior has arrived. Caterham, now owned by Lotus, has announced the creation of an engineering department that is focused on making all new, affordable sportscars.

Right now, Carterham produces the 7. The 7 is often held up as the purest driving machine and was the first car Lotus ever built. Caterham bought the rights of the 7 and have been making kits ever since. Everything has gone full circle now since Lotus has bought Caterham. With Lotus stiopping to make pure driver’s cars in pursuit for profit, it is great to see Caterham stepping up to fill the void. Sportscars for the masses are not dead, yet/

Source: Autoblog

2011 Ford Taurus SHO Car Review

Our staff member recently reviewed the 2011 Ford Taurus SHO for Bullz-Eye.com. Find out what he had to say about the ride!

The Taurus SHO is back in a rebirth that brings serious power back to Ford’s flagship sedan. The 2011 Ford Taurus SHO AWD has an unassuming exterior but delivers impressive horsepower under the hood.

Exterior
According to Ford, “A key element of the authentic SHO formula is the subtlety of its unique exterior design cues. Features include sporty premium painted wheels wrapped in standard low-profile 19-inch Goodyear Eagle or optional 20-inch Michelin high-performance tires, a deck lid-mounted spoiler and twin chrome exhaust tips. The car also features a uniquely finished interpretation of the Ford signature three-bar grille with SHO-specific parking lamp bezels”. Our test model also boasted HID projector headlamps, supplemental park lamps with security approach lamps, securicode keyless entry and dual exhaust with chrome tips. Several folks that checked out the sterling gray metallic test car were surprised to learn it was a Taurus. Many were also impressed with the sporty look of the SHO even though it doesn’t stand out from the base Taurus or the Taurus Limited.

Interior
The interior of the 2011 Taurus SHO AWD has the size of a full size sedan with the accents of a sports car. Our model included charcoal black leather seating, 10-way power driver and passenger seats with lumbar and driver memory, Sony premium 12-speaker sound system, Sirius satellite system, SYNC voice activated system, dual electronic temperature control, tilt and telescoping leather-wrapped steering wheel, ambient lighting, aluminum interior accents, aluminum gas and brake pedals, heated and cooled front seats, power moonroof, heated rear seats, rear window power sunshade and voice-activated navigation system. The leather trimmed seats with Miko suede inserts are made with recycled post-consumer yarns from plastic soft drink bottles and are comfortable and luxurious. When you add excellent trunk space to the feature list, the 2011 Taurus SHO AWD leaves little to be desired.

Check out the full review.

There I Fixed It: VW Beetle’s Gender Problem

Think tanks are a wonderful thing. Where else can you publish pages of biased research, get paid tons of money for it, and then have no accountability if your results are used? Car enthusiasts need their own think tank. Dashboard News is filling this void with lukewarm, soft facts with our new feature: “There I Fixed It.” In this column, we make somewhat logical solutions to an automaker’s problems. No rants about manual, diesel hatchbacks for under $25k here, our rants have data and evidence, sort of. So read on, and make sure to put your own thoughts on the subject, or new problems, in the comments below.

The first automaker to need our help is VW. On a quest to become the world’s largest automaker, VW has both decreased prices and content on some cars (Jetta), and has strengthened their niche offerings (New New Beetle) to attract more sales. However, they want the New Beetle to be bought by both girls and boys this time, instead of mostly girls like last time. AP details some of the efforts VW made to make the Beetle “manly”, such as boost gauges, bolder lines, and a stereo from Fender. But here’s the problem, the Beetle will never be manly.

Read the rest of this entry »

New VW Phaeton for 2015

If you don’t remember the VW Phaeton, then you are lucky. For those that do, they will remember it as was one of the most boneheaded product decisions known to man. The Phaeton was a joint product between VW and Bentley. Bentley’s version was the wildly successful Continental GT (as seen in any rap video that involves champagne and girls dancing). The Phaeton did not fare so well. Reason being, it offered the cost and complexity of a Bentley, with the image of a VW. So, the nearly 100k car sat on dealersihp lots until it left the U.S. market in 2006. However, it has survived overseas and is set for a return.

Car magazine reports that we almost saw a new Phaeton during the Frankfurt Auto Show a couple weeks ago. However, VW is full steam ahead on creating a brand new Phaeton for 2015. They don’t seem to know why though:

Even after the third facelift, the Phaeton can still only field one truly strong point, and that is the beautifully finished cabin which matches any Bentley even though the layout is about as contemporary as a Biedermeier sideboard, and the electronics tend to lag at least one generation behind the leaders.

It is an open secret that the next Phaeton will be styled from the inside out, matching a top-notch but less olde worlde interior to a much more timely exterior. How do we define timely? This is a question VW will have to answer in the course of next year. Before the summer break, three options were being discussed: another three-box notchback, a rather stylish five-door hatchback, and an elegant and luxurious Super-Variant.

Sounds like they are headed for the same mistake as last time; they should call it the Titanic II instead.

Source: Car Magazine

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