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The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
 |  Feb 17 2009, 1:48 PM

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Ahead of its expected debut at the Geneva Auto Show in March, these two official pictures of Hyundai’s new flagship luxury sedan, the Equus, have been leaked.

Hot on the heels of the Genesis luxury sedan, the Equus is aimed at the upper echelon of luxury motoring, and is intended to take on cars like the BMW 7 Series, Mercedes S-Class and Lexus LS.

The vehicle will be 7 inches longer than the Genesis sedan, 1.5-inches wider and boast a wheelbase that is 4.5-inches longer as well. Initially the car will be offered with the same two powerplants that are found in the Genesis; the 290hp 3.8-liter V6 and 375hp 4.6-liter V8, although it is expected that a 5.0-liter V8 will eventually be offered and will boast as much as 420hp.

Based on the conversion rate the Equus could cost almost $100,000 but that is extremely unlikely and we imagine a base price closer to $60,000.

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 |  Feb 13 2009, 1:14 PM

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Moments after we posted the unofficial pics of BMW’s new Concept 5 Series Gran Turismo, which will debut at the Geneva Auto Show, BMW updated its press site and now we have all most of the juicy info and plenty of official pics.

BMW says this is the first production-destined concept based on the company’s Progressive Activity Sedan (PAS) idea, and combines aspects of a BMW Sedan, Sports Activity Vehicle and a Gran Turismo.

The vehicle’s dimensions are 196.8-inches long, 61.2-inches high and 74.8-inches wide. This makes it second in length only to the 7 Series (as expected) and second only in height to BMW’s X Series SUVs.

The wheelbase is a significant 120.9-inches.

As for that rear hatchback trunk design, it allows for significant flexibility of cargo space. The trunk can be opened like a sedan to provide 15.1 cubic feet of cargo space, or like a hatchback or wagon to give 20 cubic feet of space. The rear seats can also be folded down for a total of 58 cubic feet of cargo capacity.

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With a focus on usability, the Concept 5 Series Gran Turismo is intended to be a comfortable space for passengers and so a great deal of attention has been paid to rear seat room. Leg room is said to be almost the same as in a 7 Series, and rear seats are adjustable fore and aft by 4-inches. Headroom in the rear is almost equal to the X5.

Inside, the Concept 5 Series GT has plenty of unique features, most of which we expect to see make it to the production vehicles. One of the key items is the black panel screen on which the instruments are displayed. Used for the gauges it remains black until the car is turned on and then the different gauges and dials are electronically generated. (This system is already in use on the new 7 Series).

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Outside, BMW has drawn inspiration from past models on this truly modern vehicle. The signature BMW kidney grille slants slight forward on this 5 Series concept, forming the front-most point of the car. This is similar to a design used on the old 2002s.

BMW has yet to release any info on the powerplants available for the new 5 Series, however, as we already mentioned, expect to see one or more turbocharged options.

BMW Concept 5 Series Gran Turismo:

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Official release after the jump:

Continue Reading…

 |  Feb 13 2009, 11:18 AM

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Gumpert has released some specs and info (and just one picture) of the upcoming Speed version of its Apollo supercar, which will be unveiled at the Geneva Auto Show in March.

Whereas past Apollo models, including the Apollo, Apollo Sport and Apollo Race, were all aimed at track performance, the Speed model is designed for hitting and breaking those 200+ mph barriers. And according to Gumpert, that shouldn’t be a problem with the Apollo Speed, as it is listed as having a top speed of 224 mph!

To hit these speeds, Gumpert stuck to modifying the aerodynamics of the car and left the engine well-enough alone. A revised front end, including new, smoother front fenders and a modified front air intake, as well as a new adjustable rear spoiler are apparently enough to get the Apollo up to that 224 mph speed.

As for the engine, it remains unchanged from past models. Out back can be found a 4.2-liter twin-turbocharged Audi 4.2-liter V8, which produces anywhere from 650 to 800hp. Gumpert claims a 0-60 mph time of 3.0 seconds.

Other aesthetic modifications include revised tail lights.

As for the rest, we’ll have to wait for Geneva to find out.

Official release after the jump:

Continue Reading…

 |  Feb 13 2009, 10:28 AM

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Thanks to the folks over at www.5post.com, we have hour first look at the BMW 5 Series Concept. Called the Concept 5 Series Gran Turismo, little is known about the vehicle yet other than what it looks like – and we wouldn’t exactly say it is beautiful. This is, after all, most likely the last BMW to be directly infused with Chris Bangle’s signature style.

The Concept 5 Series GT has styling hints from throughout the BMW range, including the new 7 Series, the X6 and the stunning Concept CS – plans for which have since been scrapped. The vehicle features a long hood, a tall mid-section and a hatchback style trunk. In fact, it looks as though BMW took a great deal of the design of this vehicle from Audi’s Sportback Concept – which will form the basis of the upcoming A7.

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As for the engine, BMW hasn’t released any info as of yet but we do expect to see a turbocharged powerplant offered as one of the options.

We’ll be sure to bring you more information from the floor of the Geneva Auto Show, starting March 3rd.

Concept 5 Series GT:

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[Source: 5post.com]

 |  Feb 10 2009, 10:46 AM

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General Motors has just released info and pics of its new micro-car, the Chevrolet Spark, which will be officially unveiled at the 2009 Geneva Auto Show in March.

There is no word on what engine will power the vehicle when it comes stateside but it is possible the Spark could be powered by the larger of the two European engine choices. In Europe, the Spark will come with a base 1.0-liter DOHC four-cylinder, or an optional 1.2-liter DOHC four-cylinder.

The body of the Spark will continue to look quite similar to the Chevy Beat Concept (that first appeared at the 2007 North American International Auto Show [NAIAS] in Detroit), on which it is based. The Spark will, however, be a four door, with rear door handles integrated into the upper part of the door to give the appearance of a two-door. Out back a tailgate spoiler is a part of the package and the Spark will also feature Chevy’s signature round tail lights. 15-inch wheels will be optional.

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In total the Spark will measure 143.3-inches in length with a 93.5-inch wheelbase. This is roughly 10-inches shorter in length than the Chevy Aveo, but still 39-inches longer than a SMART fortwo.

Inside the Spark has a motorcycle-inspired instrument cluster and depending on the market, a wide range of safety features will be included, such as driver and passenger front air bags, front side airbags, roof rail head curtain airbags, antilock brakes and electronic stability control.

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Official release after the jump:

Continue Reading…

Hyundai Tucson Concept Coming to Geneva Auto Show: the IX-35

Concept will inspire all future Hyundai SUV designs

 |  Feb 09 2009, 1:05 PM

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Its code name is the HED-6, but this concept car, set to be unveiled at the 2009 Geneva Auto Show in March will be the successor to the Hyundai Tucson. When it does make it to production, this entry-level SUV will be called the IX-35…. at least it will be called that in Europe.

Hyundai has yet to comment on if North American cars will get the alpha-numeric nomenclature that their overseas counterparts currently receive and considering the new i30 recently launched in the U.S. using the name “Elantra Touring” we wouldn’t be surprised if the Tucson name stayed.

When the concept is unveiled in full at Geneva be sure to take a close look, as according to Allan Rushforth, Hyundai Motor Europe vice president, the HED-6 Concept will pave the way for all future Hyundai SUV designs.

The HED-6 Concept was penned at Hyundai European Design in Rüsselsheim, Germany, under the leadership of Hyundai Europe’s Chief Designer Thomas Burkle.

The concept will feature a hexagonal grille, plenty of angles, 21-inch wheels and headlamps that wrap around onto the fenders. Those headlights will feature LED daytime running lights.

Power will come from a direct-injection 1.6-liter engine that makes an impressive 175hp.

[Source: AutoNews]

 |  Feb 09 2009, 12:39 PM

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According to a report on Driver’s Republic, Ferrari will unveil a special HGTE version of it’s 599 GTB flagship at the Geneva Auto Show in March.

Ferrari has produced HGT versions of both the 575 and 612 in the past. The “E” will apparently stand for Evoluzione.

The 599 HGTE will feature a more aggressive front grille (similar to the F430 Scuderia), three-piece 20-inch wheels, a more aggressive tire package and new exhaust outlets. Power should remain the same but expect the exhaust modifications to give the car an even louder growl.

To better work with the new wheels and tires, the suspension system will receive some tweaking, including stiffer springs and anti-roll bars. This setup will be integrated with the Manettino, which will feature new settings.

We expect HGTE models to cost roughly $25,000 more than the standard $302,000 asking price.

[Source: Drivers Republic]

 |  Feb 04 2009, 6:01 PM

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We recently reported that Mazda would officially unveil a new version of the Mazdaspeed3 at the 2009 Geneva Auto Show in March. First Mazda teased us with some pictures of the hot hatch and now we have this video.

We’ll be sure to bring you full details on the car from the Geneva Auto Show floor on  March 3rd.

Aston Martin V12 Vantage: It’s Really Real

Just 1,000 of the 510hp British exotics to be built

 |  Feb 04 2009, 11:04 AM

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You’ve got to hand it to those guys over at Aston Martin, they just keep coming up with ideas that seem too good to be true, and then deliver on our wildest dreams by making them a reality. Case in point: the V12 Vantage that the company will officially unveil at the 2009 Geneva Motor Show

Just yesterday we reported the rumor that the V12 Vantage RS Concept car would see production and today Aston has confirmed the news. The super-Vantage will be powered by a 6.0-liter V12 engine and make 510hp and 420 ft-lbs of torque. Aston Martin claims a 0-62 mph time of 4.2 seconds with a top speed of 190 mph.

The body of the car will use significant amounts of carbon fiber and judging from the photos, the V12 Vantage will also make use of carbon-composite brakes.

“This is the ultimate performance interpretation of the Vantage range, combining our most agile model with our most powerful engine,” says Dr. Ulrich Bez, Aston Martin’s Chief Executive Officer. “It represents the definitive driving package; providing spectacular performance to ensure a dynamically thrilling and everyday useable driving experience.”

“The V12 Vantage has a unique character, one unlike our other cars. This will appeal to different people with different tastes, allowing more people to enjoy the Aston Martin experience.

“This also illustrates one of Aston Martin’s key strengths – the ability to act quickly and turn concepts and ideas into reality.”

How right Dr. Bez is. When the V12 Vantage RS concept car came out it seemed too-good-to-be-true and yet Aston Martin is making dreams a reality. To insure exclusivity, just 1,000 models will be built.

Aston Martin V12 Vantage:

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Official release after the jump:

Continue Reading…

 |  Feb 03 2009, 12:11 PM

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After releasing the first production pictures of its Rapide saloon, there is now a rumor from Aston Martin that the company will bring two new models to the Geneva Auto Show: a car based on the V12 Vantage RS Concept and a drop-top version of the flagship DBS.

We’re most excited about the possibility of a V12-powered Vantage. The concept car featured a 600hp version of Aston’s 6.0-liter V12 engine and weighed less than 3,530 lbs – thanks to gobs and gobs of carbon fiber parts. The concept car has an estimated 0-62 mph time of 4.0 seconds. We don’t expect a production version to be quite as powerful or as light as the concept but a more hard-core Vantage would certainly be welcomed.

The second model might not get our blood pumping quite as quickly but we certainly wouldn’t turn down the opportunity to drive a convertible version of the shockingly-good DBS. This vehicle is also significantly more likely to actually become a reality.

V12 Vantage RS Concept:

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[Source: The Motor Report]

V12 Vantage RS Concept press release after the jump:

Continue Reading…

 |  Jan 29 2009, 10:38 AM

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Porsche has let the cat out of the bag, releasing images and details of the updated 2010 GT3 ahead of the Geneva Auto Show in March. A long list of improvements have been made to the track-ready street car including an increase of 20hp.

The engine’s new output totals 435hp thanks to an increase in displacement from 3.6 to 3.8-liters. The engine also receives Porsche’s VarioCam variable valve technology on both the intake and exhaust side. Porsche hasn’t release torque numbers but it has said that mid-range torque is up.

The result of this power-boost is a 0-62 mph time of 4.1 seconds and a top speed of 194 mph!

The design of the new GT3 is also updated with a new aerodynamic kit that increases downforce on both the front and rear of the car to more than double that of the outgoing model. Aesthetic changes include bi-xenon headlights, LED rear lights and modified air intakes and outlets.

Porsche has tuned the suspension to be stiffer than the outgoing model with higher spring rates and more rigid anti-rollbars. The car is also more user-friendly as Porsche has decided to offer the GT3 with an optional height-adjustable suspension. A driver would be able to raise the height of his car by as much as 1.2-inches to enter or exit parking garages or when driving on rough roads.

As the GT3 is known for its trackability, Porsche has outfitted this new model that will make it even more appealing. For starters, it will be offered with a new version of PSM (Porsche Stability Management) that will allow a driver to turn of Stability Control and Traction Control in different steps. Other performance improvements include larger and lighter brake disks (and the option of a special PCCB ceramic disk set. For racing applications Porsche will even offer the GT3 with single lug center-locking wheels.

The 2010 GT3 will go on sale in North American this fall and will be priced at $112,000 ($138,000 CDN).

2009 Porsche GT3:

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Official release after the jump:

Continue Reading…

 |  Jan 28 2009, 11:01 AM

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We already told you about the BioFuel (or FlexFuel) model that Bentley hinted at at the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit. Now the British marque is calling it a supercar and says it will unveil the new vehicle at the Geneva Auto Show in March.

The company has also released this one picture.

A lot can be discerned from the one photo – namely, that the vehicle is likely to share the Continental GT platform and most of its body parts.

As for the engine, we expect it will be another twin-turbo W12 that makes close to 650hp and is capable of giving the new model a top speed of more than 210 mph. Bentley says it will be the most powerful and fastest production vehicle they have ever built.

In Detroit Bentley did announce plans for an all-new engine and while that is a possibility for this Bentley Supercar, it’s more likely that powerplant will arrive later in 2009.

For more information on Bentley and its commitment to renewable and sustainable fuels, visit www.BentleyFlexFuel.com