AutoGuide News Blog
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.
It’s Christmas time and depending on where you live, snow could be falling and carolers calling. However, depending on your outlook, frozen precipitation is either a beautiful natural phenomenon or a dreadful sign of frigid weather; holiday singers can be a festive reminder of bygone times or guilty of trespassing.
Porsche‘s announcement that a Cayenne Diesel will finally be available to U.S. buyers was fairly big news at this year’s New York Auto Show. However, we’ve now learned that the Stuttgart automaker plans to introduce a more powerful oil burning SUV, a V8 diesel Cayenne S.
Details are still rather sketchy on exactly which engine it will use. While the existing V8 diesel used by Audi for its A8 flagship might seem the most logical choice, it’s getting on in years and with looming tighter emissions standards in Europe it probably won’t make the cut.
With Maybach being axed, again, Bentley is now looking to entice some of the brand’s top customers, including the likes of rapper J-Z, as well as the Sultan of Brunei and Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich.
Under its new corporate strategy, Daimler AG will focus high end marketing around its core S-Class sedan, adding new, more exclusive variants to help cater to existing Maybach customers,
Given that these cars will be less “unique” than Maybach’s own offerings, this approach could actually serve VW owned Bentley well, which will no doubt be able to capitalize on providing “Bespoke” services and vehicles to a discerning clientele.
In addition, Bentley Chief Executive Wolfgang Durheimer also talked of creating a “specific welcome zone inside our brand,” which includes inviting clients for VIP tours of the brand’s production facilities in Crewe, Cheshire, United Kingdom.
At the other end of the spectrum, Bentley is also looking to cultivate Porsche Cayenne customers, who are looking to upgrade their existing Turbo SUVs. Durheimer believes that Bentley’s upcoming SUV model would be an ideal platform for bringing these customers into the Bentley fold.
[Source: Automotive News]
Although it hasn’t been officially given the green light, there’s every indication that a hot rod version of the recently introduced ‘baby’ Range Rover could be on its way.
Evoque program director David Mitchell has been driving one of the little Rovers, equipped with a 300 horsepower version of the turbocharged 2.0-liter gas engine found in regular models and says that the vehicle’s chassis is more than up to the task of handling an additional 63 horsepower.
However, there remains the question of how to market such a high performance model, if and when it reaches production; one scenario is perhaps offering a ‘hot’ sub brand, a bit like Cadillac with it’s V-series.
“We’ll have to look at that when the time comes,” says Mitchell.
For more information on the Range Rover Evoque, please visit our Range Rover Evoque Forums at http://www.rrevoqueforum.com/
And it promises to be the most radical example of the breed yet, according to inside sources within Jaguar Land Rover.
In addition, in terms of styling it’s also believed to look a lot more like the Evoque than the current Mk 3 Range Rover, boasting a steeper windshield angle and more pronounced creases in the flanks, unlike its predecessor, which is loosely based on the 1970 original in terms of design cues.
Codenamed L405, it will also be larger than the current model, but also significantly lighter, thanks to the use of a pressed aluminum unibody structure, which should save almost half a metric tonne (1100 lbs) in weight. The new architecture will also result in a longer wheelbase, by pushing the rear axle back, resulting in improved back seat legroom, enabling the new Rover to rival upscale, long wheelbase luxury sedans.
In addition, interior quality is expected to take a considerable jump, with emphasis placed on rivaling ultra luxury marques like Bentley, rather appropriate considering that the new Rover will cost more than £100,000 (roughly $160,000) when it eventually does go on sale.
In terms of engines, despite other luxury manufacturers downsizing or turbocharging their offerings, the new Range Rover is expected to retain normally aspirated and supercharged gasoline fueled V8s, though in some markets, especially Europe a diesel will be offered. There’s also rumors of V6s making the cut, including a supercharged version, derived from that seen in Jaguar’s CX-16 concept two-seater, unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor Show last month. There’s even talk of a gas/electric hybrid version, though it will be interesting to see if that does indeed, reach fruition.
In terms of getting ready to build the thing, Jaguar Land Rover will invest heavily in re-vamping its Solihull, West Midlands assembly plant, particularly to cope with the demands of manufacturing the unique aluminum structure.
Call it the Cayenne Syndrome, yet it seems that even ultra luxury manufacturers can no longer resist the temptation of offering some kind of Crossover Utility.
The latest is Bentley, whose current CEO Wolfgang Durheimer, confirmed on August 10, it will be offering an SUV of its very own.
However, considering that Durheimer actually worked on the Cayenne project while at Porsche (a vehicle that saw the marque’s sales double) the idea of a Bentley 4×4 perhaps isn’t so far out on left field. He also said that Bentley plans to offer diesel engines and possibly even Hybrid powertrains down the road; he also announced the marque will return to motor sport.
Getting back to the SUV concept, the Bentley, internally coded BY736, is likely to adopted aluminum space frame construction and according to insiders, styling in the idom of a a five-door ‘shooting brake,’ a posh term for sports wagon.
Hand craftsmanship will likely feature prominently as will a plethora of high technology features, ranging from driver aids to an adjustable air suspension.
In terms of powertrains, expect a W12 gas engine to be offered, along with an eight-speed automatic transmission, though in Europe at least, a diesel will also be available. While the VW corporate 4.2 TDI could be a possibility, it’s likely the Bentley’s oil burner will also be a 12-cylinder motor, more in keeping with the brand’s stature.
As was the case with Cayenne, Durheimer believes that this SUV could be a major profit center for Bentley, helping bolster sales beyond pre-recession levels of around 10,000 units world wide. In fact he said Bentley could produce as many as 30,000 cars a year and that even that annual total, wouldn’t has he describes it, ‘devalue’ the brand.
[Source: Car Magazine]
An international gang of thieves operating in New York City managed to steal nearly 300 vehicles, shipping them off around the globe before finally being busted by police.
The 19 thieves targeted luxury SUVs such as Range Rovers, taking orders for specific models from potential buyers around the country and overseas. The crew would then go about producing illegal paperwork, including fake titles and registrations. Two Toyota dealer employees gave master key codes to locksmiths to unlock the vehicles. Within 48 hours, the stolen cars would have their VINs stripped and be bound for destinations as far-reaching as Africa, Yemen, and Afghanistan, complete with forged paperwork.
The NYPD’s auto crimes division took 10 months to investigate the group before making arrests, and now ringleader William Cruz is awaiting trial at Rikers Island, along with 2nd-in-command Michael Torres.
[Source: NY Daily News]