Car Lists, News

8 Ways the Honda Civic Type R TCR Race Car is Better than the Road Car


DAYTONA, Florida–Honda invited us to this year’s BMW Endurance Challenge at Daytona, which was the first race for the Civic Type R TCR. For some drivers, this series could be the first rung in the ladder to climb up to higher tiers of racing.

Although the three teams running Honda’s car couldn’t quite surpass all of the mighty Hyundai Veloster N and Audi RS3 TCR cars, the top Civic Type R teams finished comfortably mid pack. Rather than providing extensive factory backing for its teams like Hyundai does, Honda merely affiliates itself with the customers who purchase its cars—it doesn’t sink its own funds into the teams.

As you may recall, we at Automobile kept a Honda Civic Type R in our stable of long-term cars for an entire year, giving us plenty of time to get really familiar with its capabilities while zipping around town or taking longer road trips. While our long-termer was a total sweetheart, and repeatedly confirmed its All-Star status during its tenure, Honda’s race car version of the mega hot hatch is a beast on another, much less street-legal level.

Here are eight ways the Honda Civic Type R TCR is more savage than its road-going sibling.

More power

Ever read an article about a racing version of a street car but then got to the part where it talks about the drivetrain? If you’re like us, it’s a bit saddening when we learn a racecar doesn’t get a bump in power. Fortunately, that’s not the case with the Civic Type R TCR. A slew of engine upgrades ratchets the output up to 340 hp (compared to the standard 306 hp) thanks to improvements that include an HPD/Borla downpipe and turbo-back exhaust. The race car Type R also receives an HPD/CSF radiator, auxiliary oil coolers, and HPD cooling ducts. In total, the Civic Type R TCR has just 8.1 pounds to haul around with each horsepower, an improvement of about 2 lbs per horsepower (nearly 20 percent) over the road-going Civic Type R.

Upgraded suspension

Any racecar worth its salt needs beefier suspension than its road-going sibling, and the Civic Type R TCR is no exception. While we here at Automobile love the street car’s three-mode suspension settings, Honda took things a couple steps farther with HPD/Bilstein inverted double adjustable dampers, Eibach race springs, and HPD front camber and caster plates. To further enhance the car’s cornering capabilities, Honda offers its TCR car with a HPD/RV6 rear adjustable stabilizer bar and rear lower arms designed to take race spring rates.

Bigger brakes

To accompany all of the equipment that helps the Civic Type R TCR get going, Honda provides its race car with some serious stopping power. The front brakes have six-piston calipers, an improvement over the 2019 racecar. Brake rotors remain the same size but instead of being the OEM disc, HPD adds its Girodisc two-piece units. The brake lines and ABS actuator get an upgrade too, and Honda offers the car with varying brake compounds for endurance and sprint racing.

Even more aero

Detractors of the road car will say that it has too many aerodynamic elements and that they wouldn’t want to be seen in this hot hatch on the street. Honda’s taken this aspect of the Type R another step beyond with a massive adjustable wing. It also gets a big front splitter. Unlike the haters, this is a car in which we’d definitely want to be seen.

Lightweighting measures

As a privateer or race team owner, one of the advantages of purchasing a Civic Type R TCR is that J.A.S. Motorsport in Italy builds the car from a body-in-white, which includes the doors and hood. The bodywork is largely made from composite materials, which is also installed ahead of delivery. Naturally, the interior is devoid of sound deadening and normal creature comforts.

Huge transmission upgrades

The transmission is an area where this racecar diverges from its more pedestrian counterpart. We love the slick, short throws from the road car’s manual transmission, but the racecar ditches its six-on-the-floor in favor of a sequential gearbox. The six-speed paddle-shifted transmission still has three-pedals (the clutch helps get the car in gear), but once it’s on the track the driver just needs the throttle and brake pedals.

A big fuel tank

One of our staff’s few gripes with the Civic Type R is that the gas tank isn’t quite where it needs to be for the long haul of a road trip. Whereas the model for the non-racing public can store 12.39 gallons of gas in its tank, the fuel cell in the TCR car is a massive 26.4 gallons, which lasts for about an hour and a half during a race.

Race Ready

Like we said earlier, the car comes prepared and ready to race (pending setup) from J.A.S. Motorsport. Before options, the official sticker price is $172,238—and that figure also excludes any export, import, or tariff charges that may apply. Honda offers a bunch of other helpful gear and support for people new to the platform or new to racing, including setup tools, spare parts, an upgraded ABS system, data logging gear, and homologation documents as well.  Overall, it’s about as out-of-the-box as racecars get, and we’d bet it’d be challenging to build out one’s own car for a comparable price.













































The post 8 Ways the Honda Civic Type R TCR Race Car is Better than the Road Car appeared first on Automobile Magazine.



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2020 Chicago Auto Show Hits, Misses, And Revelations


Chicago now is the first major auto show of the calendar year, unless you count CES (and we don’t), and so with the Detroit show moved to June this year, there seemed to be some hope the Windy City would take its place with several important new car introductions and maybe a concept or two. Our colleagues at Motor Trend for example, brought in a team big enough to cover, say, the recently deceased IAA in Frankfurt.

The Chicago Auto Show is a big consumer event, with large numbers of the public showing up after the press days. As in previous years, the new stuff consisted mostly of mid-cycle facelifts and special edition trims, but at least Chicago isn’t in decline the way the bigger, more important shows are.

Appropriately, two of us attended Chicago for Automobile magazine, and while that means you’ll only see two bylines in the comments and criticisms below, it should be obvious that we’re not short on such comments and criticisms.

HIT: Ford GT Liquid Carbon Edition

We’ve seen the whole-car-in-carbon-fiber thing before, but… ooh, does it work for the Ford GT. Ford is building each one from a single batch of carbon fiber, to help ensure the weave is perfect and can be properly integrated into the car’s design. In person, the effect is breathtaking. Hopefully Ford has built a drainage system around the display to handle all the drool this thing is bound to generate. And $750,000? I’ll take two, please. Put them on my corporate card.

–Aaron Gold

REVELATION: Ford GT is the new Bugatti

More horsepower in a car like this is always welcome, but a 50-percent premium for perfectly matched carbon fiber? Ford says it will limit this car’s production to 12 per year, all made available to customers on the sold-out list, so as not to flood the market with these cars and diminish their value. That’s a total of 36 of these through the production run ending in 2022, or $9 million more than the customers on the allocation list had expected to pay. I predict we’ll see Ford rolling out variants of the GT for years after they’ve finished building them, milking it the same way Volkswagen Group milks Bugatti’s hypercars.

–Todd Lassa

HIT: GMC Yukon

Finally, only 23 years after Ford started installing an independent rear suspension in its Expedition, General Motors is following suit. Both Chevrolet (Tahoe, Suburban) and GMC (Yukon, XL) benefit from the upgrade, along with a much-improved third-row seat, but of the two GM trucks, the Yukon is the big winner—it’s definitely better looking than the Chevys. Also notable is that the Denali gets a unique dashboard, while the lower-line Yukons share their dash with the Tahoe and Suburban—an acknowledgement that they didn’t do enough to differentiate the Sierra Denali from lesser pickups. The new dash may not be any better, but at least it’s different. Bottom line is that GM’s new royalty-size SUVs are impressive, and for the first time in years, Ford has something to worry about besides GM buyer loyalty.

–A.G.

MISS: GMC Yukon

I didn’t realize how big the new SUV’s snout is until I walked past a couple of them on the stand, including one with the Denali grille and another with the XT4 grille. Who’d have thought the Cadillac Escalade (not present at this show) would have the understated design?

–T.L.

HIT: Mercedes-Benz Metris Weekender

We’ve heard lots of vans pitched as potential replacements for the Volkswagen campers, but this is as close as I’ve ever seen, and it’s going into production. Super-cool, super-social, and it pops its top. Still needs a sink and a stove, though. After all, we are not barbarians.

–A.G.

 

MISS: Genesis GV80

I like the look of Genesis’ first SUV from the outside; there are a lot of genuine concept-car cues, like the LED light pipes around the headlights and taillights, that look great in person. But the miles-off-the-ground stance is a bit awkward, and the interior strikes me as a little… well… clumsy. The basic layout is nice enough, and I like the quilted leather used throughout, but some of the controls, particularly the dials for the shifter and climate control, feel too plasticky. This is the age of genuine materials, and bits that look like metal should be made of metal. It’s rare to see the South Koreans put a foot wrong, but this feels to me like the bean counters saw the bill for what the designers really wanted and had a panic attack.

–A.G.

HIT: Jeep Gladiator Mojave

The black and orange Mojave lettering looks right on the show model’s Granite Crystal paint (other colors are available), and the optional Steel Gray leather interior is designed to resist scorching from the sun’s rays. It doesn’t have the hotrod engine or (fortunately) the widened body of the Ford F-150 Raptor, but it does come with a slick suspension featuring Fox shocks. For those who like total control, it’s available with a six-speed manual gearbox as well as the eight-speed automatic.

–T.L.

 

MISS: Jeep Wrangler and Gladiator High Altitude

The black 20-inch wheels look like they come from a local aftermarket shop. As authentic as the Gladiator Mojave looks, the High Altitudes scream “poseur.”

–T.L.

MISS: Million-mile Nissan Frontier

A million miles is worthy of recognition (Lexus missed an opportunity with Matt Farah’s million-mile LS430), but when a thirteen-year-old, million-mile Frontier looks almost exactly like the brand-new re-engined Frontier you’re introducing at the show… well, that’s really not a good look.

–A.G.

MISS: 2020 Nissan Frontier

If Brian Murphy had managed to hold off on flipping the odometer on his 2007 Frontier until next year’s Chicago Auto Show, maybe he’d have scored the all-new next-generation midsize truck from Nissan instead.

–T.L.

  

HIT: The Ford Stand

Ford’s stand is arguably the best of the show. With the Liquid Carbon GT out front, Mustangs galore, the new Mach-E, a full-motion driving simulator and the whimsical STEAM Machine (a Transit XL decked out with kid-friendly science exhibits), it’s bound to be mobbed. The CAS crew was right to give it pride of place at the front of the South Hall.

–A.G.

MISS: The Audi Stand

Audi usually brings a beautifully designed display stand wherever it goes, but at Chicago its display is buried at the back of the South Hall, seemingly little more than a bunch of cars on carpet. It looks like one of those low-budget off-limits “Exotic Car Gallery” displays typically found in an auto show basement. Audi’s almost-all-AWD lineup makes it perfect for Chicagoans, so why is Audi giving show-goers the second-city treatment? Car shows are about attracting buyers, Audi. You can and should do better.

–A.G.

HIT: 2021 Jaguar F-Type

Facelifts often turn out to have ill-conceived blemishes on the original model designer’s vision. Think Series III Jaguar E-Type of the early ‘70s. These days, the facelifts are limited to front and rear styling, the grille, maybe the hood, and the front fenders. But the redesigned grille, the new side vents, and the Leaper badge applied to the sides (for the first time ever on a Jaguar) works pretty well. This mid-cycle update ought to extend the life of Jaguar’s sports car for several years.

–T.L.

HIT: Chevrolet TrailBlazer

I somehow managed to miss (heh) this at the Los Angeles Auto Show, but what a stunner the little TrailBlazer is—an obvious rip-off of the Nissan Kicks and Hyundai’s little Venue, I suppose, but I prefer to think of it as an accurate homage (and with a much better name—“Nissan Kicks” still makes me cringe). Chevrolet has become a bit staid in its styling and this shows a real effort to do things differently and (cue gravelly cigar-chomping New Yorker voice) give the kids what they want. Viewed in the context of the broader spectrum of General Motors—Suburbans with independent rear ends, a commitment to skip hybrids and go straight to EVs, and a mid-mounted engine for the 2020 Corvette?—it shows a willingness to march boldly into the future.

–A.G.

HIT: Ultimate Track Contest

Jaguar and Hot Wheels brand ambassador Mike Zarnock scored a Guinness World Record for Most Loop-the-Loops by running a Hot Wheels car, sans power booster, through seven loops, two more than the previous record. Then Jaguar announced the Ultimate Track Contest, challenging college engineering teams to beat this record. They’ll get more than 100 feet of Hot Wheels track, and must setup their track designs and run them through a local Jaguar Land Rover dealership’s showroom, offices, or service garage, by April 30. They’ll be timed for running a Jaguar Hot Wheels car through the eight loops in the shortest possible time, without the car falling off the track, and they’ll also be judged for the track’s complexity. The winning engineering team’s school gets a $50,000 scholarship.

–T.L.

HIT, MISS, AND REVELATION: Chrysler Pacifica AWD press conference

It had been a while since I’d seen a truly bizarre press conference, but Chrysler just reset my counter. After announcing the new all-wheel-drive Pacifica, what looked like a giant condom descended from the ceiling. We then stood and watched for a couple of long minutes while this thing inflated into what I believe was supposed to be a giant snow globe. I kept waiting for snow to start blowing inside, but that didn’t happen—instead, they projected pictures of snowflakes on the outside. A bunch of children ran onto the stage, the projected snowflakes began to spin, and the children began to wave their arms as if they were worshiping the giant-condom-slash-snowless-snow-globe. A Pacifica drove up, the children were shooed back off the stage, the van spun around a bit, then the condom deflated and was hoisted into the ceiling and that was that. You can see the whole strange spectacle here—skip to 6:00. Was this a hit, a miss or a revelation? Hell, it was all three.

–A.G.

HIT: Dogs for adoption at the Subaru stand

Subaru has long used the Chicago, New York, and Los Angeles shows to set up a pen and let local pet adoption organizations bring in puppies for showgoers to take home. I usually miss the dogs, because they’re often saved for the public show days, but Subaru did not have a press conference or anything new to unveil here, so it had a puppy festival going on during both media days. Thanks to the comfortable time cushions between the press conferences, I hightailed from the Chrysler Pacifica presser in the South Hall of McCormick Place to the North Hall to spend some attitude adjustment time with the adoption puppies. On Thursday, they were cute little Catahoula leopard dogs, all from the same litter, a few dozen feet from the next presser at Hyundai. I took the time to watch them play and put out of my mind how these auto shows, relics of the 20th Century, have been devolving toward irrelevance the last few years.

–T.L.

MISS: The entire automotive history (or show management?)

Detroit has moved its auto show from January (perfect time to launch the following year’s models) to June (zzzzz…), and that leaves Chicago as the perfect heir apparent. Chicago is well timed, centrally located, and well-attended, and media folks like me love it. So where are the massively big debuts? Ford’s Liquid Carbon GT seems like it would definitely be a Detroit reveal, and the GV80 is arguably the most important Genesis product to date, but it’s clear the automakers still see Chicago as an also-ran truck show. Either the manufacturers need to take a second look at the Second City, or the Chicago Auto Show staffers need to sell harder.

–A.G.


















































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Car Lists, Gears This Week, News, Opinion

Why You Should Buy a First-Gen Mazda Miata


Richard Hart, an old friend and transplanted New Orleanian who lives in Durham, North Carolina, followed my automotive advice recently. He bought a low mile, first-gen 1990 Mazda MX-5 Miata, from a friend of a friend, an older gent who’d owned the car since new, maintaining and garaging it continuously. This was good news, essential even, since the owner lived in Queens, New York, where cars that live on the street don’t get no respect.

Richard and I have been friends since my second day of college and I knew his automotive history, a thrifty enterprise littered with older cars, sometimes ones I’d found or was passing along, the last one of these being a 1975 244 Volvo sedan, which only a few years in had become too needy, too reliably unreliable, for him and his long-suffering wife, Sally, to bear. Sorry about that, guys.

In his past, there had been Darts and Valiants and Opels and not too long ago an old Mercedes Fintail. But Richard always remembered the MGB he daily drove for a few years in the ’80s, the way he loved its sporty, rorty nature and top-down possibility, as anyone with a pulse must. But it is fair to say that he was not a dedicated gearhead, displaying no discernible bandwidth, mechanically speaking, and little of the true obsessive’s willingness to spend money on nonessential maintenance—essential/nonessential being a fine line in many old cars and an issue on which the wrong side is too easily chosen. Even with his kids grown up, another MGB, which he craved, wouldn’t do. But a Miata would. They’re cheaper to buy and for someone seeking practicality, an altogether more reasonable proposition. At least that’s what I kept telling him. When it comes to old cars, I’m not afraid to proselytize. Especially for the NA Miata, the first of the breed, which turns 30 this year. (Here’s our original review.)

So Richard bought this one, which was good, because it spared me or my son, Ike, who found it, the trouble of having to buy it ourselves. Because it was too nice to let pass by. Low miles—80,000, or less than 3000 a year—crank windows, factory hardtop. No rust, no accidents, no mods. Its original red paint still shined and its black cloth interior had no tears or serious wear; the timing belt, the only expensive maintenance item, was freshly done.

Last month, I delivered the car to Richard in Durham, driving 650 miles or so in a day, with a stop in rural Virginia to lunch with an old friend of this magazine, the veteran journalist, curator, and hot-rod authority Ken Gross. The visit reminded me that there is a reason Ken’s niceness is the stuff of legend. And after 10 hours on the road with the first Miata, I remembered why I liked it back in the day, why the MX-5 itself is a legend and an indisputable classic. It easily earns a spot on my list of 10 all-time best cars.

If you’ve never spent time with one, you ought to. Here’s why:

DRIVING FUN. Famously inspired by the Lotus Elan, the sweetest handling, most chuckable confection of the 1960s, the Miata is above all a hoot to drive. It’s a Denali XL next to an Elan (though actually only about 500 pounds heavier) but safer and less likely to shred a half-shaft coupling or snap a lightweighted wishbone mid-corner. The Miata’s steering feel is as good as it could be by 1990, and especially so when in manual, non-powered steering form like this car’s. The MX-5 was born with what I’d nominate as the most pleasant manual gearbox ever, a creamily positive, short throw, dream device with that all-useful fifth speed for highway cruising that is also one of its many best features. Handling is companionate, ride is excellent by sports-car standards, thanks to all independent suspension, with delightfully predictable roadholding, plus a pleasing willingness to slide and just enough free-revving power in its original 1.6-liter formula to get that job done.

ECONOMY. Cheap to run, cheap to repair. Mazda and an army of aftermarket suppliers make finding parts easy and when used parts will do, they’re plentiful, as we found out when the car arrived and it turned out the motor that lifted the left headlight was dead. New? $314 from the Mazda dealer (sure, not too cheap, but readily available). Perfectly good used from a guy down the street with a wrecked Miata in his backyard? $50. Twenty-nine miles per gallon at 75 mph was not going to win any economy prizes, and is worse by some meaningful percentage than a new Miata, but it wasn’t bad. And if you want to buy a new Miata instead, a still joyous machine, better but less simple, you won’t hear me object.

CONVERTIBLE TOP. First off, Miatas don’t leak, a concept that makes MG owners variously cackle or cry. Second, there hasn’t been a manual convertible top easier to erect or take down, making this one simply the best in the business. It’s long-wearing, with a zip-out rear window for breezy top-up use on a too-sunny day. And three cheers for the optional hardtops. Like Miatas themselves, they are a meaningful unit of currency—handsome, easy to remove, easy to install, and always easy to sell, say, if you ever need some of your money back but don’t want to give up the car. Also, unlike many of its historic antecedents, there’s no need to do anything with the Miata’s soft top to make the hardtop fit.

CHEAP TO BUY. NA Miatas found the bottom of the market, price-wise, several years ago and are on their way back up, but on a dollar-to-smile basis they’re still incredibly affordable. Good Miatas needing work can be had from $1500 to $4000, cars purporting not to need work from about $4000 on up. Expect to pay $1000 extra for the hardtop, and less for cars with uninspiring automatic transmissions. Go shopping with $6000 and you should be pretty certain of going home in a good car. If you don’t, it’s probably because you didn’t have someone who knew cars check it out for you. Avoid: rust, accidents.

RELIABILITY. Everything works in a Miata and if it doesn’t it is A) a rare occurrence and B) easy to set right. The plastics are hard-wearing, ditto the switches and cable-operated controls. The bodies don’t rust, except in cases where repaired bodywork has been poorly prepared. The gauges and electrics work, always, as do the wipers and a real heater and defroster. The oily bits don’t leak. The doors open and shut properly. The door locks function. Can you tell I’ve owned some old convertibles? These things concern me. As does the fact that trunk stays dry. And for those so inclined, Miatas are straightforward and easy to work on yourself. Nor too expensive for you to hire someone else to work on.

Six weeks later, Richard is still pinching himself—the Mazda hasn’t broken once. “No better, smoother, cheaper thrill than hugging a corner from a foot off the ground at 30 mph,” he writes in this morning’s e-mail.  I’ve owned a few Miatas in my day, and, though I don’t own one now, I guess I’m still crazy about them after all these years. Would I buy another, even if only to salt it away? Absolutely.

Read More
Did You Know Mazda Built a Production Miata Coupe?
Here’s the Miata 30th Anniversary Model: It’s Orange
ND Mazda Miata RF Review: Carving Canyons

















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2019 LA Auto Show, 2019 Los Angeles Auto Show, audi rs 6 avant, audi rs q8, bollinger b1, bollinger b2, Car Lists, Car News, cooper se, Editor's Picks, electric cars, General Chat, id. space vizzion, jcw gp, Mustang mach e, New Cars, porsche manual 911

2019 LA Auto Show: Six Star Cars – The CarGurus Blog


With the 2019 LA Auto Show just a week away, now’s the perfect time to take a quick look at some of the new models set to be unveiled in the LA Convention Center. Below we’ve listed a half-dozen of our favorites, plus be sure to visit the CarGurus Facebook page and CarGurus YouTube channel during the LA Show press days on November 20th and 21st for updates.

Without further ado, here are six cars that have already piqued our interest.

Mach-E badge

Ford Mustang Mach-E

Two things tell you all you need to know about the faith Ford has in its all-new and all-electric SUV. First, there’s the name—because you don’t call something a Mustang without also inviting intense scrutiny about its heritage, positioning, and performance. Mustang it is, though, albeit with an added “Mach-E” for good measure.

Second is the fact that Ford’s opening press surrounding the car hasn’t detailed its drivetrain or performance, but simply informed customers that it’ll be taking pre-orders (via a deposit) the moment the official unveil ends on November 18. Now that’s confidence.

Among the options for those pre-ordering a car will be to go for a lavish First Edition model, although Ford stresses that “timing will be critical” for anybody looking to secure a vehicle in this spec. Whatever Mustang Mach-E takes your fancy, it’s hard not to think that with the right styling and performance, this could be one of the hottest cars to go on sale in 2020.

Audi RS badge

Audi RS Q8

It is unlikely anybody could come away from a drive in Audi’s Q8 and think that what it really needs is more power. However, the imminent arrival of the RS Q8 will provide precisely that, courtesy of Audi Sport’s twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8. With what is likely to be around 600 hp and 590 lb-ft of torque, the RS Q8 is expected to get from 0-62 mph in just 3.8 seconds and has already lapped the Nürburgring Nordschleife in 7:42:2. That—because we know you’re wondering—is a record for a production SUV.

The RS Q8 will be joined in LA by Audi’s latest RS 6 Avant, which is making its debut on US soil along with its five-door coupe sibling, the RS 7. Powered by the same V8 as the RS Q8, the RS 6 can get from 0-62 mph in just 3.6 seconds. Having never been offered in the US before, it’ll be interesting to see if Audi’s muscular estate is as well-received here as it has been with European buyers.

Porsche 911 Manual

The debut of an old-fashioned manual transmission in a car that’s already been for sale for almost a year would not be normally deemed newsworthy. But when the car in question is a Porsche 911, things are a little different. To a non-car person the surprise would grow further upon learning that by gaining a manual, the latest 992-generation 911 becomes slower rather than faster; for that, thank the fact that Porsche’s dual-clutch automatics now change gear so quickly it’s simply not possible to match them when you throw human limbs into the equation. As a guide, Porsche is quoting a 0-60 time of around 4.0 seconds for the 992 Carrera S manual versus 3.3 for the PDK automatic.

However, speed is not everything in a performance car. What some buyers also crave is the tactile interaction that a manual offers, whether it’s the weighty feel of the clutch pedal, the precise throw of the shifter, or the joy of a perfectly executed heel-toe downshift. And these are precisely the people Porsche is targeting with the installation of its 7-speed manual in the Carrera S and Carrera 4S versions of the 992. Rumour is these cars—and that gearbox—will be on the stand in LA. Watch this space.

Bollinger B1 and B2

Slab-sided and right-angle rich, Bollinger’s built-in-Detroit, all-electric, all-aluminum, all-black LA Auto Show debuts look less sleek than any other vehicles expected to hit the show floor. The B1 “sport utility truck” promises all-wheel drive, 10 inches of wheel travel, 15 inches of ground clearance, and a 200-mile range despite its 5,000-pound curb weight. With 614 horsepower, 668 pound-feet of torque, and a list of removable parts and off-roading angles reminiscent of the Jeep Wrangler’s, we can’t help but be intrigued.

The longer B2 electric pickup truck shares the B1’s powertrain, weight, range, and most of its removable parts, not to mention its full-length central pass-through, which in the B2’s case will accommodate cargo up to 16 feet long. Each of these trucks features air conditioning and 10 110-volt outlets (we can’t help but wonder how those will impact range). At $125,000 each, these vehicles aren’t intended for the masses, which is probably fine for now, as Bollinger hasn’t found a production partner yet.

MINI Cooper John Cooper Works GP and SE

Featuring enough airflow-managing scoops and bulges to shame Ford’s buttressed GT in addition to a huge rear wing/spoiler, the third-generation MINI John Cooper Works GP aims to whet appetites for a limited-edition 3,000-unit high-performance 2020 model. The GP concept and its 301-horsepower turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder recently lapped the Nürburgring Nordschleife in under 8 minutes, making it the fastest MINI model ever produced. It should reach US showrooms in mid-2020 at a price of $45,750, including an $850 destination fee.

MINI’s stand will also feature the new MINI Cooper SE, an all-new EV based on the MINI Hardtop 2-door launched in 2014. The SE’s electric motor supplies 181 horsepower and 199 lb-ft to the front wheels, getting the car from 0 to 60 in 6.9 seconds on the way to a top speed of 93 mph. A full charge will be possible in as little as 4 hours at home, and charging to 80% can happen as quickly as 35 minutes at a public charging station. The SE should reach dealers in March 2020 at an MSRP of $30,750, including a similar $850 destination fee.

Volkswagen ID. Space Vizzion Concept

Volkswagen’s fleet of ID. concept cars will welcome its seventh member at the Petersen Auto Museum November 19th with the world debut of the ID. Space Vizzion crossover concept. VW describes this new vehicle as combining the aerodynamics of a gran turismo with the spaciousness of an SUV in a zero-emissions car with a range of up to 300 miles.

Looking like a very long, low, streamlined station wagon, the ID. Space Vizzion, unlike the earlier ID. Vizzion, features a steering wheel and a very large but horizontal digital control panel on the dashboard. Using sustainable interior materials, the cabin features AppleSkin, a vegan alternative to leather that’s made with leftovers from apple-juice production. Volkswagen plans to release a production version in late 2021, with different versions available in North America, Europe, and China.

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