2016-02-26: Striking DS concept headed for Geneva, more potent Evora and American F1 car ...

Porsche DS E-TenseAt the upcoming Geneva Motor Show, DS Automobiles will celebrate the company's first anniversary as an independent brand with this fabulous E-Tense show car. Built around a carbon-fibre composite monocoque, it benefits from the experience gathered by DS as an entrant in the Formula E World Championship. Accordingly, the E-Tense is powered by an electric motor, which is good for 402 bhp. We can only hope that the Geneva show car will be followed by a production version, perhaps to rival the newly re-established Alpine company.
Certainly due to hit the road is the new Lotus Evora Sport 410. As the name suggests, it is powered by a 410 bhp version of the Toyota-sourced, supercharged V6 engine. More importantly, it is also a full 70kg lighter than the Evora 400 it replaces. Thanks to the lowered weight and increased power, the Evora Sport 410 is a full three seconds faster around Lotus' Hethel test track. The top-of-the-range model is due in showrooms later this year and a North America specific model will also be available.
The arrival of Haas F1 this week has prompted us to look back at earlier American involvement in Formula 1 and while the exploits of the front-engined Scarabs and the Grand Prix winning Penske PC4were already well covered, we did not yet have an article on the short-lived Scirocco. Although it was built in England and entered in the 1963 World Championship under the British flag, the project was financed by a young American millionaire, to further the driving career of his guardian. Although powered by the frontline BRM V8, the cars failed to run competitively before the funds ran out. Remarkably both cars built have survived and are pictured in our 64-shot gallery.


2016-02-24: New McLaren and Bentleys headed for Geneva and more F1 images ...

McLaren 570GT CoupeWith the start of the Geneva Motor Show less than a week away, news of releases continues to hit our desk. The most recent is of the McLaren 570GT, which is the third in the British manufacturer's 'Sports Series' range. It shares the same chassis and 570 hp engine with the 570S announced last year but offers a more luxurious and practical interior. Among the features unique to the 570GT are the panoramic roof and a rear parcel shell that can be accesses by opening the back window. The Coupe version of the 570S will enter production this summer and should reach the dealers before the end of the year.
Bentley will use the Geneva Motor Show to launch a revised Mulsanne line-up. A refinement of the existing model, the new Mulsanne is changed in detail only. In addition to the 'base' model, Bentley also offers the Extended Wheelbase and the high-performance Speed versions.
Also due in Geneva will be the new Mercedes-AMG C 43 Coupe and the Audi S4 Avant.
We have also kept a close eye on the Formula 1 testing and have added on-track images of the Haas VF-16Renault R.S. 16 and Force India VJM09.


2016-02-22: F1's class of 2016 hits the track and Maserati's new SUV revealed ...

Red Bull Racing RB12 Tag HeuerToday, the Formula 1 season started in earnest with the first day of official testing in Barcelona. It gives the teams a rare opportunity to see how well the new designs work and how they might stack up against their closest rivals. Sebastian Vettel was fastest of all in the new Ferrari SF16-H, while Lewis Hamilton impressed by completing a staggering 156 laps and clocking the second fastest time in the title defendingMercedes-Benz W07 Hybrid. Observers will also have kept a close eye on Romain Grosjean in the Haas VF-16 Ferrari, which is the first American F1 car in over thirty years. Also out on track today were the new Red Bull Racing RB12 powered by the Tag Heuer badged Renault engine, the Toro Rosso STR11, now with Ferrari power and the McLaren MP4-31 Honda, which looked a lot more reliable than its predecessor. We will update the galleries as testing continues with action shots of all the 2016 cars, so keep an eye on this page.
Over the weekend, Maserati also released the first details of the all-new Levante. Due to be unveiled in Geneva next week, it is the Italian manufacturer's very first SUV. Although few specifics have been released, we expect the four-wheel drive machine to boast the same range of power-units as the Ghibli.


2016-02-19: New Ferrari and Williams F1 cars, Volvo V90 and more on the Lexus LC 500h ...

Ferrari SF16-HToday, the first 2016 specification Formula 1 cars have been revealed. Grabbing the most attention was the Ferrari SF16-H, which represents a considerable departure from its predecessor. The aerodynamics have been comprehensively revised and a switch has been made from a pull-rod to push-rod front end. The most obvious difference is the all-white air-box, most famously used on the 1975 World Championship winningFerrari 312 T. For the occasion, we have added more images toone of the three chassis featured, which was demonstrated at Goodwood last year.
Representing a more subtle evolution is the Williams FW38 Mercedes. Carrying over much of the outgoing FW37, it has been refined to address the weak spots of the 2015 car, which included handling at low speeds. We expect more F1 cars to break cover ahead of the start of testing on Monday, so keep an eye on this page.
Volvo, meanwhile, debuted the fabulous V90 estate at a special launch in Stockholm ahead of the official Geneva debut. Building on 60 years of estate experience, the V90 shares its underpinnings with the S90 sedan that broke cover in Detroit last month. The range-topping T8 is powered by a 402 bhp hybrid drivetrain.
Another hybrid to be unveiled in Geneva is this Lexus LC 500h, we already announced a few days ago. Lexus have now revealed more images and details. It will be powered by a 3.5-litre V6, which is mated to an electric motor. The so called 'Multi Stage Hybrid System' produces a combined 354 bhp and drives the rear wheels through a four-speed, automatic gearbox.


2016-02-17: Rebirth of Alpine, new high performance Jaguars, Bentley, BMW and Lotus ...

Alpine Vision ConceptAt a special event, yesterday, Alpine revealed the Vision Concept. The compact mid-engined sports car will form the the basis of the production model due to break cover later this year. Very little technical details have been been released but Alpine's Cayman chaser will be powered by a turbocharged, four-cylinder engine, developed by Renault Sport.
Following a first glimpse a few weeks ago, Jaguar have now released the full details of the range-topping F-Type SVR model, which is available both as a Convertible and a Coupe. The first Jaguar developed by the newly created SVO department features a 575 hp V8, a revised chassis and several subtle exterior cues to distinguish it from the other models in the range.
Also due in Geneva is Bentley's new Flying Spur V8 S. The third Flying Spur variant, it fills the 'void' between the base V8 model and the W12 top-of-the-range version. The twin-turbo eight-cylinder engine fitted in the V8 S is good for 528 hp, which represents a 21 hp hike over the base model.
BMW, meanwhile, announced the X4 M40i, which was presented at a special ceremony at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca yesterday. Its most interesting attribute is a new six-cylinder engine, which is good for 360 hp.
The latest news from Lotus is the Elise Cup 250, which promises to be the fastest ever Elise. Compared to the earlier Elise Cup versions, more weight has been shaved off by using additional carbon-fibre components and also through the use of a lightweight lithium-ion battery. The Elise Cup 250's four-cylinder also produces 26 hp more. Unfortunately, it will not be available in the United States.

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