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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.
 |  Sep 22 2011, 9:45 PM

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For quite some time now, GM executives in North America have been contemplating distributing Opel’s Astra GTC as a Buick in America. Now there’s a chance that the three-door, sporty vehicle could even be produced in America.

In order to satisfy the UAW, GM has plans to build an additional compact car at an unnamed plant in America, which points fingers at the Astra GTC. Though it’s all speculation right now, GM has been committing to reopening its Spring Hill, Tennessee plant and with the addition of the new compact’s production, could generate 500 new jobs. Could Buick’s version of the Astra GTC be rolling off the Tennessee assembly line by early 2013? We’ll just have to wait and see.

[Source: Left Lane News]

 |  Sep 12 2011, 8:15 PM

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Though there are no real surprises, Bentley has made their new Continental GTC official, detailing the new luxury convertible in a comprehensive press releases. The four-seater convertible features a seven-bow, three-layer fabric roof that’s available in eight different colors. It can fold and rise in just 25 seconds and works at speeds up to 20-mph.

Standard features for the convertible also include a heated glass rear window and reading light in the liner when the roof is down while the heating/ventilation system will automatically adjust the air distribution and volume accordingly.

For the first time, 20-inch wheels will be standard for the GTC while Bentley will also offer three different styles of 21-inch wheels available as an option. It’ll feature Bentley’s infamous 6.0L twin-turbocharged W12 engine under the hood along with a new Quickshift transmission putting all 567-hp and 516 lb-ft of power to the ground.

Inside, the new interior features a bold, sweeping dashboard and instrument panel finished in premium soft-touch leather, while a choice of 17 different colors are available for your picking. In the center console, a new 30GB infotainment system is touchscreen and includes satellite navigation and Google Maps compatibility.

The new Continental GTC is now available for order through your local Bentley dealership.

GALLERY: New 2012 Bentley Continental GTC

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 |  Aug 23 2011, 8:45 PM

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Bentley has officially revealed the all-new Continental GTC with updates similar to those of the GT coupe. Originally hitting the market in 2006, the revamped second generation GTC is set to officially debut at next month’s Frankfurt Motor Show.

There are no real surprises to the new GTC, as it was heavily anticipated to receive the same treatment as the GT coupe, but it will have a weight savings of about 154-lbs compared to the first iteration.

Standard to the second generation GTC will be stylish 20-inch wheels, with three styles of 21-inchers available as options. Compared to the first generation, the new GTC will feature a 40:60 rear torque bias as opposed to the original’s 50:50, helping minimize understeer during hard cornering. It will be powered by a 6.0L twin-turbocharged W12 powerplant with 567-hp and 516 lb-ft of torque and with a weight savings of 154-lbs the convertible can hit 60 mph in just 4.5 seconds.

The new Continental GTC is now available to order with first deliveries starting in late 2011. MSRP is set at $212,800.

GALLERY: 2012 Bentley Continental GTC

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Read AutoGuide’s 2011 Bentley Continental GT Review

 |  Aug 18 2011, 3:15 PM

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Opel is set to make an impression as this year’s Frankfurt Show which takes place on September 15th to the 25th. Their main focus will be the surprise debut of an experimental car which Opel claims will emphasize the passion for driver-focused vehicles.

In addition, the booth will host the world debuts of the Astra GTC and Zafira Tourer minivan models. They will also show off the Ampera, the first electric vehicle catered to everyday European use, and seven new ecoFLEX models.

We’ve already taken an in-depth look at the Astra GTC model, while the Zafira Tourer is a stylish minivan featuring a completely redesigned Flex7 seating system and will reach UK showrooms in early 2012. The Ampera is basically the European version of the Chevrolet Volt, while the ecoFLEX models will include the following: Agila 1.0 petrol, Meriva 1.3 CDTi, Astra 1.7 CDTi, Insignia 1.4 Turbo petrol, Insignia 2.0 CDTi, and ecoFLEX versions of the Astra GTC and Zafira Tourer.

 |  Jul 26 2011, 5:00 PM
GM may decide to expand its compact car segment with a coupe version of the 2012 Verano sedan that will launch this fall.
The Verano coupe has not been given the green light, though it would be an Opel Astra GTC with Buick style accents. Issues regarding the Verano coupe include how to insert a Buick-style waterfall grille in the place of the GTC’s vertically short grille. Buick would have to build the vehicle at the Orion Township plant, to make it profitable in the long term.

There may also be plans to build a Cruze coupe in 2013, and it would compete against the Honda Civic, Kia Forte Koup and Scion tC. The Chevrolet Cruze hatchback was unveiled at the Geneva auto show last March and will arrive stateside soon. The current model will not  be sold in the U.S, but the Cruze hatch will arrive with the next-gen Cruze.  GM has also officially announced the sale of a diesel-powered Cruze in the U.S in the 2013.

[Source: Motor Trend]

 |  Jul 09 2011, 5:21 PM

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It appears that Bentley will be ready to debut the new Continental GTC at this year’s Frankfurt Auto Show in September. This debut will come one year after Bentley first unveiled its refreshed Continental GT, featuring a lighter body, more powerful and slightly more fuel-efficient engine.

The cabrio Conti GT will look similar to the GT’s refresh, featuring the same 6.0L twin turbo W-12 engine and six-speed transmission.

With the GTC on its way, look for a Flying Spur (sedan) or high performance Speed variant to follow with a Supersports in the distant future.

[Source: Car and Driver Blog]

Click here to read AutoGuode’s 2011 Bentley Continental GT review

 |  Jul 05 2011, 11:45 AM

It is a tradition at the Goodwood Festival of Speed to run up the hill of this famous estate. Just about every type of road and racing car make this trek, and the Bentley ice racer is no exception.

Earlier this year, Bentley set a new record of the highest speed achieved by a car on ice when it hit 205.48 with their 631-horsepower Continental Supersports convertible. The record run took place on a section of the Baltic Sea on a 10-mile track, just off the coast of Finland, and the car was driven by rallying superstar Juha Kankunnen.

The weather at Goodwood was a lot warmer and the crowd was much bigger for the run up the hill, but Kankunnen delighted the crowd with some quick runs. He said; “Driving this very special Bentley Continental in front of the packed Goodwood grandstands was a special experience for me. Driving on a frozen sea was a unique challenge and only a few Bentley engineers and my support crew were there to witness the new world record. So it was a pleasure to provide a glimpse of the capabilities of this Bentley to a huge audience of motorsport enthusiasts on a beautiful summer’s day.”

However, Kankunnen wasn’t the only celebrity on the Bentley grand stand, as five-time Le Mans winner Derek Bell was also in attendance. Bell, who now works as a driving consultant for Bentley also made the run, choosing to drive the new Continental GT coupe up the hill. Bell who was part of the winning 2003 Bentley Le Mans team said; “Driving the GT at Goodwood was a lot of fun. The new car maintains all the luxury and refinement for which Bentley is renowned, but is even quicker, dynamically sharper and more powerful than its predecessor.”

 |  Jun 08 2011, 11:30 AM

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Vauxhall’s Astra GTC is poised to take on the European market with its sleek, stylish design and compact body. More importantly, its price point will really give Volkswagen’s Scirocco and Renault’s Megane Coupe some serious competition. Vauxhall announced that their 2012 Astra GTC will be available with four different four-cylinder powerplants, one of them being a diesel. The most powerful will be a 1.6L turbo with 178-hp while their 2.0L diesel will sport 163-hp. Economy seekers will have two choices, a 1.4L, one with 118-hp and another with 138-hp.

The GTC will start at $30,425 (USD) while its top of the line will come in at close to $37,000. All Astra GTCs will come complete with a 100,000-mile warranty. Vauxhall’s focus for the Astra GTC includes their HiPerStrut technology that can be seen on the Insignia VXR. Thorough testing and tuning puts ensures that the Astra GTC benefits from tight handling and control.

Ironically enough, the GTC shares no actual body panels from its Astra Hatch or Sports Tourer counterparts. High-end options will include standard tinted glass, onboard computer, leather-trimmed steering wheel and fog lamps. For the entry-level Sport trim, the GTC will come with 18-inch wheels standard, DAB stereo and USB functionality.

GALLERY: Vauxhall Astra GTC

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