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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.
 |  Nov 03 2009, 12:54 PM

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After its world debut just a few weeks ago at the Tokyo Auto Show, today Lexus gave an audience of media and aftermarket tuners the first look on U.S. soil of the its new LFA supercar.

It is undeniably the most expensive Lexus, the company has ever created. The LFA supercar, priced at $375,000 is aimed at raising Lexus from a German imitator to an Italian rival. Aimed at cars like the Ferrari 599, the LFA is powered by a 4.8-liter V10 engine with 560 PS (552hp) and 354 ft-lbs of torque and thanks to a six-speed sequential transmission and a weight of just 3,263 lbs, the LFA can hit 62 mph in 3.7 seconds and tops out a 202 mph!

Lexus says the V10 engine they have created is both smaller and lighter than most V8 engines. It also uses 10 individual electronic throttle bodies for the best possible throttle response. As the the body of the car it uses carbon fiber, which is joined to the car’s metal pieces in a special process the Japanese automaker has developed.

As rumored, the car does use a carbon fiber cabin structure (often referred to as a monocoque), which is why the vehicle weighs so little. Until now production vehicles with such a setup were limited to even more expensive vehicles, like the upcoming Aston Martin One-77, which is rumored to cost close to $1.7 million.

Inside, the car has plenty of state-of-the-art technology and even has the user-friendly Remote Touch mouse.

Lexus calls the car, “Ultra-responsive and extremely stable even when taken to the edge,” saying that, “the LFA creates a sense of reassurance that opens up a new world of driving emotion, exhilarating the senses to move the driver in more ways than one.” We’ll have to wait until some serious track tests to see if the car performs like it costs.

GALLERY: Lexus LFA in Matte Black

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SEMA 2009: Toyota to Display Two Modified Priuses by Five Axis

Both hybrids to get plenty of green technology modifications

 |  Nov 03 2009, 11:46 AM

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For the SEMA Show, Toyota often calls on the Five Axis tuner shop to create wild and wacky Scions or Lexuses, but for the first time the custom fabricators have been called upon to modify a Prius. Actually, Five Axis has built two versions of the 2010 Prius, the first called the Prius Aerius (Latin for “belonging to the air”), is a SEMA Show car, while the second, called the Prius Aemulus (meaning “envious imitation”), is a street legal replica. The second car will be given to the Environmental Media Association (EMA) and auctioned off for charity.

Both cars get a Five Axis aero kit that has been made using Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) software, to not only ensure it looks cool, but also to maintain the Prius’s amazing 0.25 drag coefficient.

The show car gets Five Axis FIVE:AD S6:F 19-inch wheels with clear covers to reduce drag, along with a set of Yokohama Super E-Spec low rolling resistance tires. The actual street car will get slightly less “bling” with factory rollers.

Outside, both cars get a custom paint job that resembles the color of the sky, while the rear and side glass has been coated in 3M’s Crystalline Automotive Window Film to block 99.9 percent of UV rays.

Inside the Prius Aerius show car has its seat fabric replaced with 100 percent consumer recycled polyester, while the seatbacks are made of Polyurethane produced by Ultrafabrics that produces almost zero pollutants in the production process. The factory seats weren’t just tossed out either, but recycled to make business cards and cosmetics cases.

For more photos of both cars check out AutoGuide’s live SEMA Show coverage here:

Official:

Continue Reading…

 |  Nov 03 2009, 11:09 AM

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Ahead of its official debut later today at the 2009 SEMA Show, Toyota has revealed a single photo of its Hot Rod Tundra. Build by Phoenix-based motorcycle shop Sucker Punch Sally’s, the Tundra gets a long list of design cues from the hot rods of the 1950s and ’60s.

The Regular Cab 4×2 gets some matte black paint, red flames and Bonneville moon hubcaps, along with a custom 1950′s Toyota logo on the grille. There’s also a classic cherry bomb exhaust.

The interior gets a long list of custom items like a bench seat, while Fender Guitars was sourced to build custom hand-turned brass control knobs, as well as a polished maple wood cargo deck.

For more on this truck, see AutoGuide’s live coverage here:

Official release after the jump:

Continue Reading…

 |  Nov 02 2009, 11:32 PM

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For the 2009 SEMA Show Mazda is playing it low key, but that doesn’t mean the two vehicles on display are any less cool. Sure there aren’t LCD screens galore, nor is there any 600-hp twin-turbo V8 under the hood, but Mazda’s two modified 3 models are clean and performance oriented – just the way enthusiasts like them.

Both cars get a Crystal White Pearl paint job with some faded gray graphics, reminiscent of the style first shown on the Mazda 787B that won Le Mans in 1991. Many of the remaining exterior details get black paint, including the grille inserts, side mirrors, fog lamp bezels and the roof. The front headlamps also get a black treatment. Then both cars have been outfitted with a set of 19×8-inch forged aluminum wheels straight off the RX-8 with a set of 225/40/19 Bridgestone Potenza RE050A tires.

The Mazda3s with the 2.5-liter 4-cylinder was then shipped over to Mazda’s World Challenge racing partner Tri-Point, which installed the company’s turbo kit to boost power to 250-h thanks to a Garrett GT2871R turbo.

The front brakes have been upgraded to those of the MazdaSpeed3, with rear brakes coming from the Mazda5. Suspension duties were outsourced to KW, with a Tri-Point rear stabilizer bar.

With the MazdaSpeed3 already finely tuned from the factory, only an AEM air intake was added for a gain of 20-hp. Along with the same exterior changes and wheels, a KW suspension was also added but with new suspension mounts for camber adjustability. The brakes were also upgraded to Stoptech units – the same used on the World Challenge cars.

We’ll be sure to track these cars down at the SEMA Show and bring you more photos.

See AutoGuide’s live SEMA Coverage here!

GALLERY: Custom Mazda3s and MazdaSpeed3 for SEMA

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Official release after the jump:

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 |  Nov 02 2009, 8:57 PM

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Last year Lexus used the SEMA Show to help promote the IS-F, but for SEMA ’09, the IS Convertible is taking the stage. Lexus shipped out three IS Cs to different shops and organizations, letting them be as creative as they liked. A fourth IS C was built by Lexus’s in-house F-sport performance division.

First up is the bright green IS C from Fox Marketing (which we’ve already covered several times over). It gets a widebody conversion, iForged wheels, a Seibon carbon fiber rear spoiler and a ProCharger supercharger to make over 400-hp.

A matte-red IS350C built by the folks at VIP Auto Salon and JTuned.com might just be the nicest looking of the IS Cs at SEMA with a carbon fiber hood and trunk spoiler. Performance mods are minimal with a Joe Z intake pipe and a header back exhaust system. There’s also a TOMS air filter and reprogrammed ECU. And finally, a set of Work Gnosis GS3 MDB wheels.

The 0-60 Magazine is another relatively simple build with a Greddy exhaust and ECU. It’s a full package though with Advan wheels and Continental tires, Brembo brakes, KW coilovers and an Ings+1 body kit to give it the right look.

Finally, Lexus’s TRD F-Sport division used in-house tuning parts that any Lexus owner can buy for his or her car. They include F-Sport 19-inch forged aluminum wheels, an F-Sport big brake upgrade, F-Sport shocks, lowering springs and sway bars. On top of these parts, there’s a Five Axis aero kit and finally a custom PPG Vibrance Orange Glow three-stage candy paint.

See AutoGuide’s live SEMA Coverage here!

GALLERY: Fox Marketing IS350C

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GALLERY: VIP Autosalon and JTuned IS350C

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GALLERY: 0-60 Magazine & Design Craft Fabrication IS350C

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GALLERY: F-Sport by TRD IS350C

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 |  Nov 02 2009, 8:08 PM

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Looking more like something we might have seen at SEMA in 2002, Lexus has decided to showcase David Huang’s wild IS300 along with its collection of custom IS Cs, a TRD GS and the new LFA Supercar. Making about as much power as two LFA’s, Huang has dubbed the car the IS1000, due to its supposed 1,000-hp output. The modifications list would no doubt be as long as a dictionary but this gist of it is a 2JZ-GTE engine (from a Supra or Aristo) with just one massive turbo. Other modifications include some stunning 20-inch Work VS-XX wheels, Endless brakes, Zeal coilovers and a selection on Kansai and HKS goodies.

Owner David Huang has poured over $100,000 into this IS300, to transform it into the quintessential SEMA show car.

See AutoGuide’s live SEMA Coverage here!

GALLERY: Lexus IS1000

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 |  Nov 02 2009, 7:51 PM

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We were really excited when we started reading Subaru’s latest SEMA press release, as it listed things like a 400-hp WRX STI, the word’s “rally-prepped” and “Ken Block.” That was all well and good, but entirely too normal for a SEMA show car. And that’s what we discovered upon continued reading as we downloaded the solitary photo from Subaru’s media site. Yikes!

Along with all that good stuff, is a truly SEMA-rific TRAX system, provided by Mattracks, which replaces the car’s tires for some even more serious off-roading.

The car was built by Subaru Rally Team USA’s technical partner, Vermont SportsCar, and features a stripped down shell, roll cage, carbon fiber door panels and carbon/Kevlar Recaro racing seats with a HANS device. It makes 400-hp and 400 ft-lbs of torque and uses a KAPS 5-seed gearbox.

Even sillier than the TRAX system is the fact that the car comes with its own sleigh.

Subaru says the WRX STI TRAX is just in time for the holidays. We’re pretty sure this monstrosity just officially marked the start of SEMA.

See AutoGuide’s live SEMA Coverage here!

Official release after the jump:

Continue Reading…

 |  Nov 02 2009, 7:17 PM

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Along with a more traditional modified STI and a wild Legacy show car, Subaru is set to debut a stunning Legacy wagon at the 2009 SEMA Show. Called the Legacy GTk, this wagon is designed to be an autocross champ and can also carry your family and an autocross secret weapon. Subaru designed the car so that it would fit a racing go kart in the back and that’s where you’ll find a Coyote Motorsports XP kart.

As for the Suby, it was built by Specialized Vehicles, Inc. (SVI), with several parts like the rear spoiler and HID headlights donated from the Japanese domestic market (JDM) Legacy. SVI then built its own custom parts like a new front bumper, quad-tipped exhaust system and a new vented hood.

Under that hood you’ll find the Legacy GT’s turbo 2.5-liter boxer engine that has been modified with a new exhaust system and a reprogrammed ECU to make 300-hp and 350 ft-lbs of torque – up from 265-hp and 258 ft-lbs. There’s also a six-speed manual transmission – yummy!

Subaru Performance Tuning (SPT) and STI parts were also tossed on, including an STI shift knob and SPT short shifter.

To make it a real autocross champ, the Legacy gets an SPT strut brace, Bilstein shocks, STI “pink” springs, 6-piston Brembo brakes up front and a 4-piston setup in the rear, along with a set of 19-inch HRE Comp wheels and 245/50/19 BF Goodrich Force-KDW 2 tires.

It might just be a SEMA Show car, or could Subaru be using this vehicle to see how interested the U.S. public is in a wagon version of the Legacy? Subaru already offers the Outback, but the Legacy wagon is on sale in Japan and Europe and perhaps there is space in the North American marketplace for Subaru to bring back a sporty Legacy Wagon. Please do!

See AutoGuide’s live SEMA Coverage here!

Official release after the jump:

Continue Reading…

 |  Nov 02 2009, 6:32 PM

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The Locus Plethore has no trouble standing out in a crowd. In fact, we couldn’t help but be drawn towards its oversized backside, hardly noticing a bright green Lamborghini Murciélago on one side and a pristine white twin-turbo Gallardo on the other.

Built by HTT Technologies, the Plethore is a Canadian supercar and is manufactured at a facility at the S. Eustache Raceway in the province of Quebec. Debuting at the 2007 Montreal International Auto Show, the car is powered by a supercharged 6.2-liter V8 that makes 750-hp and 655 ft-lbs of torque. An optional 1,100-hp engine is also offered.

Both the chassis and the body are made entirely of carbon fiber, allowing the car to weigh just 2,400 lbs.

As for the car’s layout, it is similar in design to the McLaren F1 with a three-seat cockpit with the driver situated in the middle of the car, just ahead of two passenger seats that flank the driver’s chair on each side.

Pricing is set at just under $400,000 Canadian.

See AutoGuide’s live SEMA Coverage here!

GALLERY: Locus Plethore

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 |  Nov 02 2009, 6:07 PM

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With the SEMA Show officially starting tomorrow, we were in town early and thought we drop by to see what we might stumble upon. It was hard to miss the tasty Skittles rainbow of convertible Challengers parked out front. Dodge tuner Mr. Norm’s Garage was displaying five of the drop-top Challengers in different colors and with plenty of different custom work.

Mr. Norm’s has already released several Challenger performance packages including a Super Cuda, Super Challenger and the Legend’s Edition cars that come with rebuilt HEMI engines with forged internals and a Kenne Bell twin screw supercharger that pumps out 900-hp!

See AutoGuide’s live SEMA Coverage here!

GALLERY: Mr. Norm’s Garage Dodge Challenger Convertibles

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 |  Nov 02 2009, 5:39 PM

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It doesn’t get much more extreme than this in the tire business. Known for building ridiculous one-off tires for the SEMA Show, in the past Italian tire manufacturer Pirelli has shown such monstrosities as a 30-inch tire – on a Hummer no less. For the 2009 SEMA Show, the company has decided to go in the opposite direction.

No… we’re not talking about smaller tires, but wider ones. Debuting on a brand new 2010 Camaro are a set of Pirelli tires in a 405/25/24 fitment. The wheels were supplied by bling wheel maker Forgiato and with some custom flared fenders that will have Bumblebee doing a double-take. An AirRunner air bag suspension lets the Camaro drop low for the show, or raise up for more functional use. Still, we doubt this Camaro will even see Main Street, let alone the drag strip.

See AutoGuide’s live SEMA Coverage here!

GALLERY: 2010 Widebody Camaro With 405/25/24 Pirelli Tires

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 |  Oct 30 2009, 2:24 PM

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Those wandering the isles of the SEMA Show next week in Las Vegas probably won’t pay much attention to the red 2009 Chevy Corvette in the Edelbrock booth. But they should.

As the performance-oriented company that it is, Edelbrock’s Corvette won’t have 22-inch diamond-encrusted wheels, or orange paint, or six LCD screens. Nope. In fact, the car will be entirely stock – except where it counts.

Edelbrock will use the SEMA Show to debut a new E-Force supercharger system. This blower is an Eton unit and uses the same rotors as found on the Corvette ZR1.

The E-Force supercharger will be offered for 2008-10 Corvettes in two stages. A stage one setup bring power from 430-hp to 554-hp, along with a healthy dose of torque – 515 ft-lbs to be exact. A stage two package will also include a smaller pulley and an upgraded fuel pump, with an output of 599-hp and 547 ft-lbs of torque.

Edelbrock promises ZR1-like acceleration without the price tag.

Be sure to check back on November 3rd for AutoGuide’s complete SEMA Show coverage.

See AutoGuide’s live SEMA Coverage here!

Official release after the jump:

Continue Reading…

 |  Oct 30 2009, 10:59 AM

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NASCAR racing team Hendrick Motorsports is planning to launch a limited edition run of Camaro SS models to celebrate 25 years in the business. Called the Hendrick Motorsports 25th Anniversary 2010 Camaro SS, each car will be built by famed Corvette tuner Callaway Cars.

The package will include a stylish aerodynamics kit with a front splitter, side skirts, rear spoiler and diffuser all made of carbon fiber. Another very cool item is the ZR1-styled hood that not only makes room for a little extra something under the hood, but lets you take a look at it too. The clear opening gives view to an Eaton TVS supercahrger that raises the Camaro’s output from 426-hp to 582!

Additional modifications include Callaway springs, shocks and anti-roll bars, as well as a stylish set of Callaway wheels.

The vehicle is rated at a 0-60 mph time of 3.9 seconds with a quarter mile pass of 11.89 at 120.1 mph!

Just 25 Hendrick Motorsports 25th Anniversary 2010 Camaro SS models will be built for a price of $76,181 each. The car will officially be unveiled next Tuesday, November 3rd at the SEMA Show in Las Vegas.

We’ll bring you more on the car with AutoGuide’s live SEMA coverage starting Nov. 3rd.

See AutoGuide’s live SEMA Coverage here!

GALLERY: Callaway Cars Hendrick Motorsports 25th Anniversary Camaro SS

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[Source: CamaroBlog]

 |  Oct 30 2009, 9:50 AM

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Subaru will showcase three vehicles at the SEMA Show in Las Vegas next week, including one vehicle that owners can replicate, thanks to the company’s Subaru Performance Tuning division. That car is a WRX STI, which has been completely outfitted with a long list of SPT parts straight out of the factory catalog. The car retains its turbocharged 2.5-liter engine but gets an SPT exhaust system to raise power slightly to 315-hp – up from 305-hp. Under the hood, there’s an SPT turbo heat shield and a selection of shiny bits, including a billet oil cap and battery hold down. Outside, the car also gets some extra style with a new front lip spoiler and exhaust finishers. Oh, and let’s not forget the 19×8.5-inch Prodrive GT2 wheels in Glitter Gold.

Wrapped in wear Michelin Pilot Sport rubber to help the car’s cornering abilities, the STI also gets some assistance from STI performance springs, an SPT strut tower brace and lower chassis brace.

Inside, the car is mostly stock with an added SPT boost gauge, a media hub audio system, an STI shift knob and some all-weather floor mats.

The second vehicle is definitely one that won’t be offered in the SPT catalog. It’s a VIP styled 2010 Legacy 2.5GT. Sure you can get the SPT oil cap and battery tie-down, but the air ride suspension and 20-inch wheels (with a 4-inch lip) are most certainly one-off items. To fit these wheels on the car’s body, the fenders had to be flared. Other body mods include a long list of JDM Legacy parts (overnight parts from Japan anyone?) like a hood, bumper, grille as well as HID headlights and fog lights. The car also gets a roof spoiler as well as a rear decklid spoiler. In order to fit the smooth JDM hood, the Legacy’s top-mount intercooler was replaced with a Mishimoto front mount intercooler.

And if the exterior seems extreme, just take a look at the interior, which gets a complete diamond-stitch leather treatment. The rear seat area was changed significantly with two bucket seats, two LCD screens and a huge audio setup.

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A third vehicle will also join these two Subys. It’s a Subaru SPT Parts Delivery Van, that’s based off a fully restored 1969 Subaru 360. This is no performance machine with a 356cc engine that makes 25-hp and 25 ft-lbs of torque. But hey, it does get 66 mpg.

We’ll be sure to bring you more on all of Suabru’s SEMA show vehicles with live coverage from Las Vegas starting next Tuesday, November 3rd.

See AutoGuide’s live SEMA Coverage here!

Official release after the jump:

Continue Reading…

 |  Oct 29 2009, 10:16 PM

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Kia appears to be readying an announcement that for 2010 it will launch a motorsports initiative using the Forte Koup.

We just received a brief (very brief) email from Kia Motors America stating that the Korean automaker will, “be accelerating its brand transformation” with an announcement at the SEMA (Specialty Equipment Manufacturers Association) Show next week. Included with that announcement was the above photo.

Don’t be fooled by the badges and decals, however, as this is no SEMA show car. It appears to be a race ready Forte Koup, with the colors and badging being that of Kinetic Motorsports. Kinetic has long been involved in the Grand Am series an we suspect the announcement will be a car (or team) that will compete in next year’s Koni Challenge Series.

Kinetic does also run the Kinetic Speed Shop, for street legal performance, so there is also a strong possibility that Kinetic will be offering a full line of performance parts for the Forte Koup.

If we’re really lucky, Kia will announce both.

We’ll find out for sure next Tuesday, November 3rd on the first day of the SEMA Show in Las Vegas. Be sure to check back for AutoGuide’s live SEMA coverage starting then.

See AutoGuide’s live SEMA Coverage here!

 |  Oct 29 2009, 1:54 PM

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Much like last year, Chevy is planning a display of tricked-out Camaro models for the SEMA Show and one of those vehicles is apparently a Grand Sport model. Chevy hasn’t made any comments other than releasing the video, which shows a few different vehicles, including a lime green Camaro and the dark gray car with red hash marks and Grand Sport badging. What we expect is slightly more power from the LS3 engine, with bigger brakes, shorter gears and (presumably) a dry-sump oil system and differential cooler – just like on the Camaro.

We’ll have to wait for the car’s official reveal next Tuesday (November 3rd) at the SEMA Show and AutoGuide will be there to bring you all the coverage. In the mean time, check out the video below:

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 |  Oct 29 2009, 1:31 PM

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Later today Scion is planning to display a selection of its 2009 SEMA Show cars before they hit the convention center floor in Las Vegas next week. But if you can’t wait until later today, let alone next week, we have a sneak peak at just what modifications each car will receive. We already reported on which shops are planning to do what (see the Tuner Challenge cars here and the additional three cars here), but now our Scion source has leaked us the full specs on each car.

Let’s start with the Tuner Challenge cars, which are once again all xB models for 2009. First up is the Bowls entry that will take its design cues from the Japanese El Camino – a 1970 Toyota Crown pickup. Along with a custom trunk conversion, roll cage and special ADF 20-inch wheels, under the hood there are Crower cams, a TRD clutch and limited slip differential, as well as TRD brakes, a front strut tower bar and rear stabilizer bar. Also included is an Air Lift Company digital air ride kit.

As for the Mummbles Marketing car, this xB is getting a 9-piece widebody kit from BRS Autodesign with  shaved door handles and a custom Teal Blue Pearl paint job. Seibon will provide plenty of carbon fiber bits outside, while NRG has outfitted the interior with new seats, harnesses, a steering wheel, shift knob and parking brake lever. Also look for a powerful Descendant turbocharger system.

The final Tuner Challenge car is from designer Eneri Abillar. It also gets a BRS widebody kit but will get added motivation from a Greddy turbocharger. Added goodies include TRD strut tower bars and illuminated door sills, while the interior will feature a hard wood floor.

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The additional three vehicles are from Five Axis, Epic Cartel and Kogi – a Korean/Mexican fusion food truck in LA (we’re not making this up). Five Axis will do a modernized version of the DJxB, using the second generation xB. It will come with 3-inch fender flares, a four-piece lip kit, a custom dual exhaust setup and 18-inch Five Axis wheels.  The exterior of the car will be coated in Molten Lava Red paint. Inside, there will be plenty of audio from Pioneer, plus a DJM mixer. But we’ll have to wait for the car’s reveal to see how it all plays out.

Epic Cartel is also looking to play off its past successes. Having already built an xD and xB, this year the company will take on the tC, which will get similar design cues. The car will get a 3-inch chopped top, along with an air bag suspension setup and 22-inch Vellano wheels. Added power will be delivered by a TRD supercharger and a Cartel side exit exhaust setup.

As for the Kogi car, it will be an xD with an MV Designz aero kit. Built with inspiration from the Kogi truck, it will have a BBQ grille, fridge, sink, ice chest, cooking utensils and even condiments. The rear doors, tailgate and hatch glass will all be motorized. Also look for items like Tein colivers, 19-inch DPE wheels and a Rotora big brake kit.

Scion is also expected to display an xD model from the folks at 0-60 Magazine with a rally car theme, but no info on that car is available yet.

Check out the gallery of design sketches below and we’ll bring you photos once Scion sends them (or sooner if they “leak” out).

See our live SEMA coverage here:

2009 SEMA Show Coverage

GALLERY: Scion’s 2009 SEMA Show Cars

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 |  Oct 29 2009, 12:30 PM

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Suzuki is hoping to drum up interest in its new Kizashi mid-sized sedan with a quartet of customized versions that will be officially unveiled at the SEMA Show in Las Vegas next week. Suzuki has already released some info on three of the cars built by different tuner shops, while a fourth car, built by the folks at Import Tuner Magazine, will be kept secret until the show.

First up is the Road Race Motorsports Kizashi (pictured above). With a complete aerodynamic kit, a new front grille and vented hood, Road Race gives the mid-sized sedan more track appeal. And helping the car’s performance to live up to its looks are a set of Progress Technology springs and sway bars and Rotora brakes. Performance modifications are kept to a minimum, but Road Race did include a dual exhaust system as well as a new air intake and a reprogrammed ECU.

The lighting experts at Delta Tech also took a stab at the Kizashi, outfitting it with LED and HID lights. The car also has an RK Sport aero kit, a new cold air intake and exhaust system, a well as Koni coilovers.

Looking like an extra from a crash scene in the first Fast & Furious movie (from before or after the crash?) is the Westside Group’s Kizashi Soliel. With “soliel” being the French word for the sun, we do see the relevance, as both hurt your eyes when you stare at them.The car gets a notably extreme aero kit, with a massive rear spoiler and exhaust pipes that are integrated into the bumper. In a nod to Suzuki’s impressive motorcycle building, the Westside guys did use a custom Yoshimura exhaust setup.

In addition to these three Kizashis, Suzuki also shipped one of its new Equator pickups to the folks at ICON Vehicle Dynamics. They slapped on a set of long tube headers and a cat back exhaust for added power from the 4.0-liter V6, while ICON tossed on its own coilover suspension, Total Chaos upper control arms and 2.5-inch shocks for some added off-road capability. The truck was then outfitted with Bushwacker fender flares and a set of Goodyear Wrangler MTR tires on some Trail Ready wheels.

Suzuki won’t have an official presence at this year’s SEMA Show, so the collection of five Suzuki vehicles will be displayed throughout the venue.

See AutoGuide’s live SEMA Coverage here!

GALLERY: Road Race Motorsports Kizashi

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GALLERY: Delta Tech Kizashi

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GALLERY: Westside Group Kizashi

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GALLERY: ICON Equator

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More on all of the 2009 SEMA Show Suzukis after the jump:

Continue Reading…

 |  Oct 29 2009, 7:13 AM

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HRE wheels has teamed up with Michigan-based Corvette tuner Specter Werkes/Sports to build a seriously impressive ZO6, which will showcase the wheel maker’s new carbon fiber rims. HRE has been working on a line of carbon fiber wheels for quite some time now – even displaying a prototype version at last year’s SEMA Show. The testing appears to be finished, with these light-weight rollers tipping the scales at just 22-lbs each.

The Specter Werkes car also includes the tuner’s wild aero kit, with plenty of carbon fiber and a race-ready appearance. And let’s not forget the Lingenfelter-sourced twin-turbo 7.0-liter LS7 setup (and Corsa exhaust) that produces as much as 800-hp!

See AutoGuide’s live SEMA Coverage here!

GALLERY: Specter Werkes/Sports Corvette GTR

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[Source: MotorTrend]

 |  Oct 28 2009, 10:37 PM

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Prior to its official SEMA Show debut, several photos of the Saleen S281 version of the 2010 Mustang have leaked onto the net. With all the controversy surrounding the Saleen brand as of late, it’s no surprise that this pony car won’t be displayed along with the stable of Stangs at Ford’s booth. Then again, with the Saleen name still carrying a lot of cache, the Mustang tuner doesn’t exactly need to piggy-back.

The S281 2010 Mustang is (arguably) the first full package to come from the new Saleen Performance Vehicles company. Several months back the “new Saleen” did roll out a 435S model, but in many ways it was more a collection of parts than a fully thought out vehicle. Even the company admitted that the 435S was more of a budget-minded performance vehicle.

As for the S281, it promises much more and we have to say the exterior styling is impressive – although we’ll take ours without the rear quarter window covers.

And as for the rest of the package, that info didn’t leak out with the pics, so we’ll have to wait for SEMA to find out more.

Be sure to check back for AutoGuide’s 2009 SEMA Show coverage starting November 3rd.

GALLERY: 2010 Saleen S281 Mustang

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[Source: TheMustangSource]

 |  Oct 27 2009, 9:18 PM

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Ready to give the Lingenfelter Camaro a run for its money, the team at SpeedFactory will unveil a 440 cubic-inch Dodge Challenger SRT8 with as much as 700-hp. The power increase comes thanks to a supercharger, but that’s not all. The 440 cu.-in. (7.2-liter) engine is a big step up from the already huge 6.1-liter V8. And to make the package even better, it uses a Mopar block made of lighter aluminum – rather than the heavy factory iron block. The heads are also aluminum and the all-new internals are forged.

Getting all that power down is made possible thanks to a Mopar transmission and a new rear end that can handle up to 1,000-hp.

Other highlights on the car include a Corsa stainless steel exhaust, new 20-inch wheels with Bridgestone R Compound tires, 15-inch Brembo rotors, stiffer springs and anti-roll bars, as well as a chassis brace.

AutoGuide’s live coverage of the 2009 SEMA Show starts November 3rd and we’ll be sure to track down this monster machine for a few extra pics – especially some under the hood!

See AutoGuide’s live SEMA Coverage here!

[Source: Car & Driver]

 |  Oct 27 2009, 6:01 PM

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Mid-sized sedans aren’t exactly the type of vehicle that spring to mind when you think of the SEMA Show, but Ford will be presenting three versions of its impressive new family car in Las Vegas next week. Each of the three vehicles represents a different part of the Fusion’s spectrum, with a hybrid offering, a high volume four-cylinder model and a powerful V6 Sport model.

Seemingly the least exciting, the 4-cylinder Fusion might just be the opposite. The Ford Fusion T4 by MRT (pictured above) gets a turbocharger to help pump out a lot more power, but still retains a reasonable level of fuel economy – along the lines of Ford’s own EcoBoost setup. MRT estimates the car should make anywhere from 275 to 300-hp. Other modifications include an intercooler, a special exhaust system, an H&R Springs suspension setup and a set of 20-inch wheels.

For a more dedicated approach to fuel economy (performance be damned) the folks at MJ Enterprises modified the Fusion Hybrid. The car is now even greener thanks to: a reduced body weight (with lighter products); a more aerodynamic body; heat-reflective paint and the removal of petroleum-based products.

Finally, Ford will showcase the efforts of Aaron Vaccar Signature Series, and owner Aaron Vaccar. This 3.5-liter V6 Fusion also gets a turbocharger for what will no doubt be an SHO matching amount of power.

See AutoGuide’s live SEMA Coverage here!

GALLERY: Ford Fusion Show Cars for SEMA 2009

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Official release after the jump:

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 |  Oct 27 2009, 5:25 PM

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Lincoln has been hard at work refreshing its lineup over the past few years and the luxury arm of Ford has chosen to display three of its newest vehicles at the 2009 SEMA Show: a 2010 MKZ, a 2009 MKS and a 2010 MKT. But before the two luxury sedans and one crossover made their way to Las Vegas, Lincoln shipped them out to different tuning shops across the country to have each car individually stylized.

“Lincoln as a brand is continuing to attract younger customers to the showroom with products like the MKS, MKZ and the new MKT luxury crossover,” said Amy Marentic, Ford Car and Crossover marketing manager. “These customers place huge importance on style, design and technology, and these are areas where Lincoln plays well. SEMA gives customizers the opportunity to push the boundaries of design, while still focusing on the core strengths of the Lincoln brand.”

Ford’s SEMA Designer Melvin Betancourt echoes Marentic’s thoughts stating that, “Customization is about individuality and reflecting who you are. That is particularly true about the new generation of people who are buying cars. The vehicles at this year’s SEMA show prove that Lincolns have great personalization potential.”

See AutoGuide’s live SEMA Coverage here!

See more on each of the three SEMA Lincolns after the jump:

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 |  Oct 27 2009, 2:25 PM

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Set to officially debut next week at the SEMA Show in Las Vegas, next to a selection of other modified Lexus vehicles, Fox Marketing has decided to jump the gun, revealing all there is to know about the extremely custom IS350C. While the bright green paint (in true Fox Marketing style) might be the most obvious, the most impressive mod is easily the ProCharger blower under the hood that helps the 3.5-liter V6 pump out 405-hp.

Other performance modifications include an F-Sport exhaust and set of Yonaka coilovers, to help the drop-top Lexus sit low on a new set of custom 20-inch iForged wheels. Inside those wheels there’s even a big set of F-Sport performance brakes.

Inside, the car gets Lexus’s cream white hide, while a Classic Design Concepts light bar helps give the car a sporty flare.

Outside, it’s more than just a few coats of green paint. The car received a custom 2-inch widebody conversion with new fenders, a new front lip spoiler, rear bumper and a Seibon carbon fiber rear wing. As for the paint color, Foxy Green, it’s even been named after the company known for building some of the wildest SEMA creations.

See AutoGuide’s live SEMA Coverage here!

GALLERY: Fox Marketing Lexus IS350C

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See the full specs after the jump:

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