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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.
 |  Aug 20 2010, 9:16 PM

Car Crazy TV host and enthusiast Barry Meguiar is reported to be in stable condition in hospital in Monterey, according to a statement issued by Meguiar’s Inc. yesterday.

Meguiar, who took his family’s car detailing product business and turned into into a multi-million dollar operation; was attending the Pebble Beach Concours D’Elegance when he fell ill after contracting an undiagnosed virus, reportedly from filming his TV show outside the United States. He was immediately rushed to Monterey Community Hospital and taken into intensive care . Meguiar is one of the most popular figures on the collector car circuit and is often to be found at major events across the United States, including SEMA.

[Source: Autoweek]

 |  Aug 17 2010, 8:10 AM

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Bentley chose the suitable Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance as the perfect location to debut two new special edition drop-tops: the continental GTC 80-11 and the GTC Speed 80-11.

Both cars get Union Jack badges on the front fenders and a special color named “Midnight,” matched up with a “Dark Grey Matallic” soft top. Interior trim includes Beluga leather with a bright aluminum finish for the GTC and a dark finish for the SPEED models. Both models also get unique 20-inch wheels.

As for power, well, both Bentley’s get the twin-turbo W12 with 552-hp and 479 ft-lbs of torque for the GTC 80-11 and 600-hp and 553 ft-lbs of torque for the GTC Speed 80-11.

Pricing is set at $220,545 for the GTC and $247,545 for the GTC Speed, which includes a $3,000 gas guzzler tax and $2,595 destination charge. Just 80 examples of each model will be made in 2011.

GALLERY: Bentley Continental GTC 80-11 and GTC Speed 80-11

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 |  Aug 15 2010, 6:56 PM

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Amidst all the other impressive classics on display at Pebble Beach, many of the most interesting belong to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Hall of Fame Museum. The car are part of a larger collaboration between the race track and the Concours as next year the Brickyard will celebrate its racing centennial.

Notable vehicles on display include the innovative 1928 Miller “Front Drive Special” which used a 1.5-liter engine. Without a driveshaft tunnel, the car could sit much lower the the ground. Despite several pole positions it never finished higher than sixth, although it did set records in Europe, racing against the leading Alfa and Maserati models of the day.

Equally as innovative is the 1950 Kurtis “Cummins Diesel Special” which may only have placed 13th at Indy, but did so without ever making a pit stop thanks to the turbocharged 6.6-liter diesel’s impressive fuel economy.

And finally, we can’t ignore the 1972 McLaren “Sunoco Special.” The very same McLaren company that currently races in the Formula One World Championship competed at Indy from 1970 to ’82, winning three times, the first of which was in this blue and yellow car piloted by Mark Donahue.

Check out the gallery of official Hall of Fame Museum cars as well as a few other notable Indy racers on display at Pebble Beach.

GALLERY: Indianapolis Motor Speedway Hall of Fame Museum Cars at Pebble Beach

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 |  Aug 15 2010, 6:20 PM

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Considering how long it’s been around, we were surprised to see the VRS Concept on display at the Concept lawn at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. Regardless, it’s a unique vehicle using a tubular chassis and a first-gen Cadillac CTS-V engine. The Caddy connection is an obvious one thanks to the dramatic front grille. Equally dramatic is the rear end with a set of massive 22-inch Alcoa wheels.

The connection to Cadillac is an even more direct one than that, however, with company founder Wayne Cherry a former Cadillac designer.

While hardly a concept that’s headed to production, when we spoke with a company representative earlier in the week (when the car was on display at The Quail), we learned that at one point six Cadillac dealers had expressed interest in purchasing VRS models as show pieces in their dealerships. That all fell apart with the recession, but with the economy starting to get back on track and Cadillac starting to position itself as competitor in the luxury segment, perhaps Mr. Cherry will have a few customers after all. Heck, knowing the income of the folks viewing the car at the Pebble Beach concours, maybe some of them will pick up a VRS as show-piece for their 12 car garage.

GALLERY: W.K. Cherry Design VRS Concept at Pebble Beach

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GALLERY: W.K. Cherry Design VRS Concept at The Quail

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 |  Aug 15 2010, 5:43 PM

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Unveiled at the Geneva Auto Show earlier this year, the Alfa Romeo Pandion Bertone Mantide concept car is once of three coachbuilt vehicles built to celebrate the brand’s centennial. Based on the Alfa 8C platform and using the same 4.7-liter V8 engine, it features over-the-top design language, especially when it comes to the particularly Baroque wheels and rear end.

It also features two massive doors that run the length of the car, flipping upwards to create access to the 2+2 cabin.

The car is also said to feature design traits that will inspire future Alfa models. We certainly hope that includes the sinister front end.

GALLERY: Alfa Romeo Pandion Bertone Mantide Concept

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 |  Aug 15 2010, 3:38 PM

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One of the celebrated marques at this year’s Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance is luxurious British automaker Jaguar. With 75 years of history, Jag decided to celebrate the occasion with the limited edition XKR175. As the name suggests, just 175 versions of the luxury coupe will be built for the U.S. market – with an additional 15 being produced for Canada.

Based on the European Speed Pack model, the XKR175 makes 510-hp and 461 ft-lbs of torque from a supercharged 5.0-liter V8 engine. It also gets a special aero kit, larger 20-inch wheels and tires, not to mention some plus-sized brakes.

All models will come in Ultimate Black paint with a Warm Charcoal interior with Cranberry stitching and Piano Black wood accents. Plus, there are the obligatory “XKR175 – x of 175″ door sill plates.

Pricing for this collectors item is set at $104,500 (including destination charge).

GALLERY: Jaguar XKR175

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 |  Aug 15 2010, 3:20 PM

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To celebrate 60 years of the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, Rolls-Royce has unveiled a special Concours Edition version of its Phantom Drophead Coupé. It goes without saying that the debut locale was none other than the world famous concours.

With custom trim items, Pebble Beach logos on the seats and door sills this bespoke Rolls even gets its own color. Named Stillwater Blue, the deep shade is named after Pebble Beach’s famous Stillwater Cove. Adding to the unique qualities of the luxurious drop-top is a special picnic set – perfect for a very opulent mid-day snack.

Named after the concours, this car is destined to become a prized classic.

GALLERY: Rolls-Royce Concours Edition Drophead Coupé

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 |  Aug 15 2010, 1:44 PM

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What better venue for classic British automaker Morgan to debut a new concept than at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. Keeping the same general body shape as the Aero, the EvaGT does away with the VW Beetle headlights in favor of some angry LED units. The large Morgan grille remains, however, and grows in size to add more oomph to the retro coupe.

Continuing to rely on BMW for the powertrain, the EvaGT comes with the German automaker’s twin-turbo inline-six making just over 300-hp and a solid 300 ft-lbs of torque. Using a light weight chassis, aluminum body panels and light weight Rays wheels, the EvaGT tips the scales at just 2,755 lbs, allowing for an impressive 0-62 mph sprint of just 4.5 seconds. Top speed is rated at 170-mph.

Technically speaking the EvaGT is still a concept, but a small automaker like Morgan isn’t about to do through all the trouble of building this prototype to then store it away in a museum. Expect a production model to debut as early as the Geneva Auto Show this coming March.

GALLERY: Morgan EvaGT

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 |  Aug 15 2010, 12:44 PM

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On display for the first time even, Ferrari chose the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance to display the one-off P540 Superfast Aperta. One of the first vehicles to come from Ferrari’s Special Projects program (others including the Enzo-based P4/5 and the F430-based SP1), underneath this gold beauty is a Ferrari 599 chassis.

The P540 Superfast was built for Edward Walson, the son of John Walson, who invented cable TV. Walson commissioned the vehicle with inspiration coming from the Fantuzzi-designed Ferrari which appeared in the 1968 film Toby Dammit. It was designed by Pininfarina and built in-house in Maranello, with Walson taking part in the entire design process. While added bracing was required to maintain the chassis’ rigidity, plenty of carbon fiber panels were used to reduce the impact of the weight gain. In total, engineers managed to limit the added weight to just 44 lbs.

Like previous projects, the luxurious Ferrari’s engine remains untouched, with the factory 6.0-liter V12 producing a tremendous 612-hp.

GALLERY: Ferrari P540 Superfast Aperta

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 |  Aug 15 2010, 11:40 AM

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It may be on the Concept Lawn at Pebble Beach, but the McLaren MP4-12C is not a hypothetical model – even if it’s named like one. One of very few carbon chassis vehicles in the world (a list which also includes the Lexus LFA, displayed directly next to the MP4-12C at Pebble Beach), this new McLaren model was not designed to be the supercar performer that the McLaren F1 was, but rather a usable exotic that will rival, and possible beat, the Ferrari 458 Italia in all categories.

Seeing it in person for the first time, with the Pebble Beach venue being its first North American showing, we’re still not sold on its looks, with an overall shape that doesn’t make us want to put up a poster of the car on our wall.

Power for the MP4-12C comes from a twin-turbo 3.8-liter V8 that makes 600-hp and 433 ft-lbs of torque and makes it to the ground through a 7-speed dual-clutch transmission. McLaren estimates a 0-60 mph time of less than 3.0 seconds. The elapsed time to 124-mph (200 km/h) is set at under 10 seconds.

Exact pricing for the MP4-12C has yet to be set, but will be between $225,000 and $250,000. So far, six dealers have been announced in North America, including Auto Gallery in Beverly Hills, CA; Park Place in Dallas, TX; Miller Motorcars in Greenwich, CT; Price Family Dealerships in San Francisco, CA; Lake Forest Sportscars of Chicago, IL and Dew Luxury Motor Cars in Tampa Bay, FL. McLaren is expected to announce their representatives in Philadelphia, Orange County, Toronto and Miami shortly.

GALLERY: McLaren MP4-12C

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 |  Aug 15 2010, 11:24 AM

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Several weeks ago we brought you a few pictures of a yellow Lexus LFA; now that car has been officially unveiled on the Concept Lawn at Pebble Beach, during the annual Concours d’Elegance. Those early pictures were misleading about the exact shade of yellow, however. Seeing the car in person it is definitely more of a soft yellow than the eye searing color previous photos had lead us to believe.

Nothing else is new about the model, with a 552-hp V10 engine and 354 ft-lbs of torque. With a six-speed sequential transmission and a curb weight of just 3,263 lbs, the LFA has a power to weight ratio of 5.8 lbs/hp and can hit 62 mph in 3.7 seconds and top at at 202 mph!

Priced at $375,000 just 500 LFA models will be produced. Lexus also recently announced that along with its complex leasing program, the LFA is also available to purchase outright, but customers must agree not to flip the car.

GALLERY: Yellow Lexus LFA

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 |  Aug 15 2010, 11:13 AM

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There’s no doubt that with the new XJ, Jaguar decided to leave behind its decades old approach of building the same old vehicle in order to take on the luxury saloons of Germany with something fresh and new that would appeal to less traditional Jag customers. Taking that approach to the next level is the XJ75 Concept, presented today on the Concept Lawn at Pebble Beach during the annual Concours d’Elegance.

With an aggressive aero kit, blacked out grille, tailpipes, wheels and even Jag emblems, the exterior still isn’t as surprising as the interior. Much like the outward appearance, the cabin takes a black and white approach with seriously high-grade materials and quilted black Alcantara seats that look straight out of a Lamborghini. This youthful approach really meshes well with the Jag’s high-tech features.

Jag is using this concept to test the waters and see if the new group of customers would be interested in something a bit more wild and a bit more expensive. A Jag representative on hand told us that so far the new Jag approach is working with first month sales of the new XJ in the U.S. exceeding those of the past XJ for the previous 12 months! Better yet for Jag, 80 percent of those customers are new to the brand.

Are you a current or prospective Jag customer? Would you buy this car? Tell us what you think by leaving a comment.

GALLERY: Jaguar XJ75 Concept

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 |  Aug 13 2010, 8:24 AM

At this year’s Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance Jaguar is celebrating its 75th anniversary as an automaker and what better way to blow out the candles than with the exhaust gases from a 510-hp XKR. Based on the European Speed Pack model, the XKR175 makes the 510-hp (as well as 461 ft-lbs of torque) from a supercharged 5.0-liter V8 engine. It also gets a special aero kit, larger 20-inch wheels and tires and some plus-sized brakes.

All models will come in Ultimate Black paint with a Warm Charcoal interior with Cranberry stitching and Piano Black wood accents. Plus, there are the obligatory “XKR175 – x of 175″ door sill plates.

Pricing for this collectors item is set at $104,500 (including destination charge) and as you might expect, just 175 models will be built. Jag has also announced an additional 15 models for Canada.

We’ll be sure to bring you more photos of the car from the Pebble Beach Concours this weekend.

Official release after the jump:

Continue Reading…

 |  Aug 12 2010, 10:09 PM

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Having just arrived in Monterey, the AutoGuide team headed over to Pebble Beach to pick up media credentials and when we got there we were shocked to see a massive Lotus display. With numerous vehicles on display (including the new Evora GT4 car) we quickly snapped a few photos of the Elise SC RGB special edition. The Pebble Beach Concours venue is the first time this car has been show.

The limited edition Elise was built to honor long-time (but now retired) Director of Vehicle Engineering, Roger George Becker, who dedicated 44 years of his life to developing Lotus vehicles. The RGB model comes full-loaded, offering most option packages and items like light-weight forged alloy wheels. All models will also get a numbered plaque and will be signed by Roger Becker.

Pricing for the Elise SC RGB edition is set at $57,950 while Lotus has also now confirmed the Exige S RGB for North America, priced at $70,750.

GALLERY: Lotus Elise SC RGB

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