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New York International Auto Show 2019 Highlights

1. Porsche 991 Speedster & Heritage Design Package

Porsche had been teasing us with Speedster concepts for a couple of years and took the opportunity to pull the wraps off the GT3 based 2019 911 Speedster at NYIAS 2019.

The press conference confirmed the rumours that a GT3 engine would be used in contrast to previous Speedsters that utilised standard Carrera engines and not the GT engine we see here. In the standard GT3 there is 500 horsepower, the Speedster achieves 502 horsepower and 346 pound feet. 1948 units will be produced to celebrate 70 years of Porsche.

2. Rimac Concept_Two

Promising some breathtaking performance figures like a 0-60 mph time of 1.85 seconds, 1,914hp and 2,300Nm of torque. Enough for a top speed of 412 km/h. Add a carbon-fibre monocoque with state of the art technology like all-wheel torque vectoring and a 650 km full electric range and you have one hell of a promising electric hypercar. The electric hypercar did not look out of place surrounded by combustion engined hypercars.

3. Koenigsegg Jesko

What we are looking at here is possibly the fastest road car in history and possibly the first to hit 300mph. It was a surprise seeing Jesko at NYIAS as the car has been seen in Hong Kong just 48 hours prior. The V8 produces 1,280 hp running on regular fuel with the flexfuel E85 option allowing 1,600 hp in some markets. Torque reaches 1,500 Nm at 5,100 rpm. The transmission is another unique design. It is a 9-speed multi-clutch unit that dispenses with traditional synch rings yet allows lightning fast changes between any gear. It weighs just 90 kg in total, lighter than a comparable dual clutch unit.

4. BAC Mono

The BAC Mono is not a car that we have not seen before, however, this example looks stunning in its naked blue carbon with gold highlights that it had to feature in the highlights.

5. Bugatti Chiron Sport 110 Ans Edition

What better way to celebrate 110 years of engineering excellence? The Bugatti Chiron Sport “110 ans Bugatti” is a special edition of the Chiron Sport limited to 20 cars.

6. Lamborghini Aventador SVJ

Lamborghini will build 900 SVJs and few will be brighter than the car at the NYIAS 2019 stand. Each will come fitted with a 770 hp naturally aspirated V12 engine producing 720 Nm of torque. Dry weight is reduced to 1,525 kg which will allow a 100 km/h sprint in 2.8 seconds and a 200 km/h sprint in just 8.6 seconds. Top speed is comfortably above 350 km/h.

7. Genesis Mint Concept

No motor show would be complete without an outlandish concept car and The Genesis Mint Concept stole that crown at NYIAS 2019. The luxury city car concept is electric, obviously. The rear doors that allow access to the rear storage deck are probably the stand out feature, but the overall design is very cool indeed.

8. Mercedes-AMG GLC 63 S Coupe

At a show brimming with electric cars and a look to the future, it was great to see Merecdes-AMG presenting a good old fashioned V8 fossil fuel muncher – the facelift on the GLC and GLC Coupe is modest, the lights being the most significant visual cue.

2019 BMW i8 Roadster Review: Yesterday’s Vision of Tomorrow

The BMW i8 Roadster is, in one sense, the Bavarian Motor Works‘s halo car—a range-topping two-door with a lofty price tag that represents where the company is headed. On the other hand, it’s a middling compromise, neither as fast (or fun to drive) as its similarly-priced competitors nor as efficient as many other modern-day vehicles boasting wheel-powering battery packs and electrical ports.

The Good: It’s hard to argue with a sports car that can accelerate from 0 to 60 miles per hour in four seconds and get the combined equivalent of 69 miles per gallon between its gas engine and battery pack. Still harder when it looks as wild as the i8 does, with its gullwing doors and aquatic predator lines.

Who It’s For: People whose primary reasons for buying a six-figure sports car are more along the lines of showing off on the streets and drawing stares than shooting for lap times or carving up rural B-roads. In other words, probably the majority of people who buy six-figure sports cars.

Watch Out For: Climbing in and out, which is pretty much impossible to do with any decorum. Also, mockery from anyone owning a newer luxury car in the same price bracket; the i8’s interior would look cheap in a car half the price to the discerning eye.

Alternatives: The all-new 2020 Porsche 911 Carrera 4S Cabriolet ($133,400), the Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster ($158,850), the Audi R8 Spyder ($182,100). Oh, and there’s the brilliant all-new Aston Martin Vantage ($149,995), if you’re not wedded to that convertible body style.

Review: The problem with visions of the future is that they rarely come true—and they tend to date quickly when they don’t. The i8 first reared its head a decade ago; granted, it was called the Vision EfficientDynamics then, but a glance at that concept car is all it takes to see that most of its style and substance made it to the streets. In those days, the idea of pairing a compact gas-powered engine to a plug-in battery pack was fresh and exciting; after all, General Motors had just unveiled the production version of the Chevrolet Volt, and Tesla was still three years away from flipping the automotive space on its head with the Model S. The i8’s idea of allying a turbocharged inline-three with a lithium-ion battery pack and electric motor to make a car that combined Porsche performance with econo-car efficiency felt like a window into a better tomorrow—one where even the threat of $7/gallon gas couldn’t suppress our sports car dreams.

But in 2019, when fully electric vehicles have been embraced—by the zeitgeist, if not the mass market—the i8 feels like a throwback, not a look forward. It’s a feeling that’s exacerbated the moment you swing your legs over the awkward door sills and plop into the interior, which already feels dated. The all-digital instrument panel looks two sizes too small by today’s standards, with an unfortunate amount of black plastic bezel on each side of the screen. Same goes for the iDrive screen, though at least that now includes touchscreen capabilities—handy for operating Apple CarPlay, if nothing else. The wiper and blinker stalks feel old and cheap. And the radio presets allocated via iDrive, oddly enough, don’t correspond to the hard buttons next to the volume knob.

It’s not all bad, though, The orange-leather-and-gray-cloth trim found in my tester add a distinctive touch; the color combination is a matter of personal taste, but the material pairing feels premium in a way that breaks it apart from the six-figure car pack. The seats are comfortable—far more accommodating than the hard-sided Recaros and their clones found in many similarly-priced sports cars whose owners want to hit the track (or at least make it seem like they do).

The exterior, though, is how i8 sales are made. The car is still every bit as visually arresting as it was a decade ago, even now resembling a refugee from Minority Report or I, Robot—a shape too irrational to co-exist with ‘97 Honda Accords and late-model Chevy Silverados and busted-up panel vans. Low and slippery, it looks like a well-oiled shark as it cuts through traffic towards you. And unlike some hardtops that meet the Sawzall, the drop-top conversion does the look no harm; it’s still every bit as alien on the road, it just happens to now let others see the human hosts within. And the roof’s quick transition time means you won’t be caught with your top down often; it can flip from open to closed in 16 seconds—shorter than plenty of traffic lights.

Going Roadster also alleviates some of the flaws of the coupe. It allows for near-silent top-down running, which is both delightful and rare; in fact, I’m pretty sure this the only convertible on sale today that lets you drive under electric power alone, allowing you to savor the rush of the wind and the smell of the air, undisturbed by clattering pistons or carcinogenic exhaust. It makes driving the i8 more about enjoying the experience of motoring as a whole, rather than just the kinetic thrills of carving through corners and blasting past speed limits.

Which is good, because this Bimmer lacks the power to punch as hard as its competitors. The i8 received the mildest of performance updates for 2018, but you’d be hard-pressed to tell the difference the added battery power (capacity rose from 7.1 to 11.6 kilowatt-hours, and the electric motor went from 129 hp to 141) brings to the table. The maximum system output of 369 horses is hardly the sort of fact worth whipping out at the bar in an era when Dodge sells four cars making more than that for around $40,000 or less.

Still, the more I drove the i8 over the course of a week, the more it grew on me. It’s legit fast when you floor it, the electric motors and turbochargers joining forces for an immediate shove of torque off the line and speed alike. Thanks to that rifle-blast kick of instant power, it feels faster than even its 4.1-second 0-60 time would lead you to believe.

Three cylinders and a turbocharger aren’t what most motorheads would consider the orchestra needed for a melodious internal combustion soundtrack, but the i8’s gas-burner doesn’t offend the ears once you’re really pushing it in Sport mode—aided, somewhat cheaply, by subtle synthetic enhancement that plays through the speakers. At lower speeds and rpm, though, it’s a bit clattery, hardly the sort of purring soundtrack.

Leave the car in the default Comfort mode or toggle up Eco Pro, and you won’t have to deal with that; unlike Sport, which leaves the engine on all the time, those fuel-sipping modes kill it at every opportunity around town, using the front axle-powering electric motor to hum from A to B. They’re not completely silent, but the only time you’ll hear their high-pitched whine is with the stereo off and the roof shut at low speeds—and even then, it’s hardly annoying.

Still, electric driving comes with its quirks. While the motor can carry you at speeds of up to 75 mph, getting the most out of that requires some very delicate feet. The accelerator tricky to modulate in maximum-efficiency Eco Pro mode; it’s resistant to input at first, leaving the i8 falling behind traffic when pulling away from a light, but push too hard and the gas engine clatters to life unnecessarily. Likewise, the brakes’ battery-recharging capabilities are difficult to master; there’s a bit of lift-off recapturing—about 25 percent of the full ability, according to the gauge—but even the slightest tap on the brake pedal pushes it way beyond that into the friction braking zone.

But if the electric motor is handy, the battery pack that feeds it may be its worst characteristic. That 11.6 kWh of electron capacity only delivers a claimed 18 miles of zero-emissions range; based on my time with the car, that estimate ought to come with an asterisked caveat along the lines of: *with a sole occupant and no cargo, on a perfectly flat surface, at a speed of 40 miles per hour, when the external temperature is between 68 and 72 degrees Fahrenheit, when driving towards the moon at high tide. 15 miles seems more realistic in real-world conditions. Even if the full 18 miles were easily attainable, though, it’s just not very much for practical purposes—only enough to cover the average American driver’s 16-mile commute if he or she can recharge at the office.

Which brings me to one grand ol’ your-mileage-may-vary caveat: I spent my week with the i8 in New York City, which is arguably one of the worst places to live with a plug-in car. To use them most effectively, plug-in hybrids and EVs require a garage at home or a parking spot at work with a dedicated outlet—somewhere you can reliably depend on leaving the car for several hours so it can charge while you’re away.

Which is exactly the sort of thing most New Yorkers lack.

Those who commute via private vehicle can rarely depend on having the same place to park every day, while most of those who own cars but commute via mass transit leave them parked —where EV charging ports are few and far between. Tesla, at least, offers a fair number of Superchargers scattered around the Tri-State area—and besides, they have enough battery capacity to make once-a-week charging a possibility. The i8, however, doesn’t offer such luxuries, forcing New Yorkers to cobble sketchy extension cord chains out their apartment windows if they want to charge up at home.

And even then, it’ll take a long time to add power: Seven hours suckling on a 110-volt wall outlet yielded between six and seven miles of EV range. In an ironic twist, the fastest way to add electric driving range seems to be to drive it hard with the gas engine running; five miles of stop-and-go between 0 and 45 mph—about 20 minutes of driving—loaded the battery up with five additional miles of electric-only driving range.

Still, even under less-than-ideal conditions, the i8 proved itself fairly efficient. My average fuel economy sat right around 25 miles per gallon over 100 miles of mostly city driving, which favors electric motivation. Plugging it into the wall socket in every day and gaining even those six miles of battery power from a free source would have probably sent that up a bit. Considering any comparable Mercedes-AMG GT would be lucky to hit its EPA-rated 16 miles per gallon over the same stretch.

Verdict: Decent fuel economy isn’t enough to excuse the biggest issue with the i8: It’s neither sporty enough nor green enough to justify the price. At $165,000, those looking for straight-line thrills or virtue-signalling power would be better served with a Tesla Model S P100D; or, on the flip side, if your ultimate goal really is to be kind to the planet while still driving a sexy, speedy German drop-top, it’s hard not to argue in favor of buying a Porsche 911 Carrera GTS Cabriolet and spending the extra 20 grand on carbon offset credits. (Fun fact: At $5 per 1,000 pounds of offsets, that $20K could offset 4 million pounds of carbon dioxide—the equivalent of 78,430 gallons of gasoline.)

Still, there’s a specific space out there for the i8 Roadster. If you can reliably plug in your car for a few hours each day, and if you’re more concerned with the lifestyle aspects of sports car ownership than driving engagement, the i8 will treat you well. Otherwise, though, there are better choices for the money.

2019 BMW i8 Roadster Specs

Powertrain: 1.5-liter turbocharged three-cylinder connected to rear axle via six-speed automatic transmission; AC synchronous electric motor connected to front axle via two-speed automatic transmission
Total Maximum Horsepower: 369
Total Maximum Torque: 420 pound-feet
0-60 MPH: 4.1 seconds (Car and Driver testing)
Cargo Capacity: 2.3 cubic feet

BMW provided this product for review.

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New GMC Syclone Brings America’s Greatest Sport Truck Back to Life

The GMC Syclone of the early Nineties is an absolute legend in the automotive world. A modified, high-performance version of the Sonoma pickup truck with a turbocharged 4.3-liter V-6 producing 280 horsepower and 350 lb-ft of torque, it was ludicrously quick; the Syclone could accelerate from 0-60 miles per hour in 4.3 seconds, making it the quickest-accelerating production car of 1991—even faster than a Ferrari 348. And it looked rad as hell, too—slammed close to the ground and only available in black with red graphics.

Syclones are quite rare; GMC only made it for one year, with a production run of fewer than 3,000 units. But now, you can buy a modern-day version of the Syclone—sort of. Speciality Vehicle Engineering of New Jersey has announced it will produce a run of 100 2019 Syclone sport trucks based off both two-wheel-drive and four-wheel-drive versions of the GMC Canyon pickup.

The 2019 Syclone’s sport suspension drops it to the ground by two inches up front and five inches in the rear. The truck will use a supercharged 455-hp 3.6-liter V-6—noted by “455HP” badging on multiple areas of the truck—along with myriad other performance upgrades, including a cat-back dual exhaust. SVE won’t make any claims about beating Ferraris, but promises the new Syclone will be “outrageously fast.”

The Syclone will also have 20-inch wheels, rocker panel extensions, a body-color grille, a numbered dash plate, and Syclone badge inside, outside, and on the key fob. It will be available in the Canyon’s full range of factory colors, though why get anything but black?

The price for these mods? Steep. The conversion costs $39,995—in addition to the price of the Canyon itself, which starts at $32,195 in 4WD form. That’s far more than what one would pay for an original Syclone in fine shape these days. (You can buy this one for $37,900, for example.)

Oh, and as for that oddly-spelled name? Turns out GMC had to use an “S” at the front because Ford held the rights to “Cyclone”—but General Motors wasn’t going to let that deter them from calling the truck what they wanted.

These Four Cars Were Named the Best In the World This Year

The 2019 New York International Auto Show is upon us—and that means so are the annual World Car Awards. The WCA jury is made up of over 80 automotive journalists and industry professionals from more two dozen countries, who come together to decide the absolute best cars across six different categories.

This year, however, only four cars took home awards. That’s because the 2019 Jaguar I-Pace not only swept up the Green Car and Design of the Year Awards, it also took home the big one: World Car of The Year. The other winners include the Audi A7, Suzuki Jimny 4×4 and McLaren 720S.

Check out the full list of winners below—and be sure to read Gear Patrol’s associated reviews of each, for more insight into what makes these cars so award-winningly special.

World Car of The Year/ Green Car of the Year/ Design of the Year

2019 Jaguar I-Pace “The I-Pace has a great deal of Jaguar DNA flowing in its shape. Jaguar designer Ian Callum’s pen is strong here, and there’s a clear through-line between this car and his other works, like the Jaguar F-Pace, though I feel like there’s even a hint of Jaguar C-X75 in its overall form.” – Alex Kalogianni, Contributor

World Urban Car

2019 Suzuki Jimny 4×4 “Would this car thrive in the U.S.? Sure. It’s cool and fun and will take you where you want to go for thousands less than its closest competitor. And yeah, it’s cute, too.” – Eric Adams, Contributor

World Luxury Car

2019 Audi A7 “An even more elegant upgrade, though, sits at the corners, with the headlights and taillights, which in the upper trims – namely the Prestige – perform brisk little light shows each time you lock and unlock the vehicle. The HD Matrix-design LED headlights feature distinctive vertical bars, and can be augmented with an optional laser light booster that doubles the reach of the headlights ahead of you.” – Eric Adams, Contributor

World Performance Car

2019 McLaren 720S “Thanks to a strong focus on ergonomics, the 720S is just as easy to park in a garage as it is to take on a road trip as it is to scream around a race track.” – Nick Caruso, Coordinating Producer

Read More Gear Patrol Reviews

Hot takes and in-depth reviews on noteworthy, relevant and interesting products. Read the Story
Note: Purchasing products through our links may earn us a portion of the sale, which supports our editorial team’s mission. Learn more here.

BMW i8 E.N. Army Edition By EVE.RYN

The BMW i8 is yet another testament to the German automaker’s innovative push for modernity. Not only is it one of the company’s most iconic hybrid sports cars, it’s also a template for the future of automotive design.

But EVE.RYN just took it even further with its own BMW i8 E.N. Army Edition. The Japan-based tuner has decided to remove the sporty platform’s aging aesthetics and replaced it much newer-looking parts. The revamp is a stunning example of what a car could look like given some slight tune-ups. That’s no shade to the BMW i8, by the way. In fact, it’s a testament to the versatility of the core vehicle that it can lend easily to modern upgrades.

The BMW i8 E.N. ARMY Edition revises the electric hybrid sports car mold. Among the changes the Japanese tuner brought include a custom front bumper, carbon fiber intakes, and gold wheels. You also get flared wheel arches and modified rear buttresses. The result is a distinct vehicle oozing with personality. A matte-green coating rounds the whole thing out, while E.N. ARMY branding on the vehicle’s rear visors serve a subtly stylish edge.

In terms of performance, you won’t be disappointed. EVE.RYN decided to leave the powertrain be, which is good since it was pretty excellent to begin with. You get 369 ponies, for starters, and that’s just the beginning. You’ll also find a bespoke carbon fiber diffuser and rear wing for aerodynamic design improvements. It’s a staggering achievement, and you can learn more by hitting the link below.


Photos courtesy of EVE.RYN

The Apollo IE Hypercar Is Updated and Ready for Production

A True Carbon Fiber Beast

The Apollo IE hypercar is one of those cars that came out as a prototype a couple of years ago and then pretty much disappeared. Well, now it’s back and ready for production. According to a recent press release, the car is better than ever, too. The model features a full carbon fiber chassis that’s different than ever before. The company worked with HWA AG to make the handmade carbon fiber chassis.

Apollo IEApollo IE

According to the company, the chassis is built to “meet and to partly exceed respective FIA LMP2 safety requirements.” This could mean that the vehicle will have a shot at competing in the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Because of the way the carbon fiber chassis is built, the car doesn’t need to have a roll cage installed. This will help keep weight down and should help make it extremely stiff for track use.

The car also takes a step away from the prototype in the aerodynamics department. The production model is much more aerodynamic. This should allow the car’s massive, naturally aspirated 6.3-liter V12 engine, which makes  780 horsepower and 560 lb-ft of torque and is mated to a six-speed sequential gearbox, move the car through the air efficiently.

The car is capable of a 0 to 60 mph time of just 2.7 seconds and a top speed of 207 mph. Those sound like some Le Mans competing performance numbers to us. We’d love to see the Apollo IE hypercar at the race. Only 10 of the cars will be produced and each one will cost $2.71 million.

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NYIAS 2019: 2019 Porsche 911 Speedster

We are live at the New York International Auto Show 2019 and the star of the show is undoubtedly the 2019 Porsche 911 Speedster.

The press conference confirmed the rumours that a GT3 engine would be used in contrast to previous Speedsters that utilised standard Carrera engines and not the GT engine we see here. In the standard GT3 there is 500 horsepower, the Speedster achieves 502 horsepower and 346 pound feet. The modest bump comes courtesy of the race-bred powerplant which has been enhanced with individual throttle bodies that make the throttle response even sharper, just like in the 911 GT3 R race car.

The 2019 911 Speedster shares a chassis derived from the 911 GT3 models with a specifically-calibrated rear axle steering system and dynamic engine mounts to deliver a maximum amount of stability and precision. Unlike the GT3, the Speedster will only be offered with a six speed manual gearbox. The 4.0 litre flat-six engines still has a redline up at 9,000 rpm and will hit 60 miles per hour in 3.8 seconds. The weight saving measures, including the 9 pounds saved with the manual transmission result in the 2019 Porsche 911 Speedster weighing just 3,230 pounds.

The 2019 911 Speedster is planned to be available for order on May 7, 2019 and is expected to reach U.S. dealers in late 2019. The MSRP is $274,500, not including a $1,250 delivery, processing and handling fee.

The Porsche 911 Speedster Debuts In New York With Gorgeous Styling

The Best Looking Porsche?

We reported on the fact that Porsche was going to pull the cover off the 911 Speedster at the New York Auto Show, and now it’s happened. The car looks better than we expected. The car isn’t just all about looks, though. It has the same 4.0-liter flat-six engine that makes 502 hp and 346 lb-ft of torque that’s in the 911 GT3. It also uses individual throttle bodies like the GT3 RS racing car.

The Porsche 911 Speedster can make 0 to 60 mph in 3.8 seconds and it has a top speed of 192 mph. The car weighs just 3,230 pounds and has a special rear axle steering and dynamic engine mounts. The car will be for sale only with a six-speed manual transmission. Porsche made significant efforts to lighten the car. The company used plenty of carbon fiber and lighter weight door panels to keep the weight as low as possible.

The Speedster features a super lightweight fabric top so you can get out of the weather if things turn bad while you’re out driving around. Porsche came out with a Speedster concept last year. While the production model looks great, it doesn’t have some of the retro-inspired features of that concept car. Still, we’d argue it’s one of the best-looking cars in the Porsche lineup. 

Porsche only plans to build 1,948 units worldwide. Some of the models built will come to North America. If you want a chance at owning one of these super sleek convertibles, you’ll really have to pony up the big bucks. Porsche wants $275,750 (that’s including the destination fee of $1,250) for each 911 Speedster. If you do get the car Porsche has a special watch called the Porsche Design 911 Speedster Chronograph to go along. It’s inspired by the car and will look perfect on your wrist as you drive.

The 2.5RS Is the Unsung Hero of the Subaru Impreza Family

While most of the world watched Subaru dominate the World Rally Championship in the mid-’90s while simultaneously enjoying the fruits of those labors in the form of the race-bred road-going Subaru WRX STI, those of us the United States were left wanting. But in 1998, to test the waters, Subaru gave us the Impreza 2.5RS—and the success of that car is the reason Subaru finally brought the WRX to our shores in 2001.

The two-door Impreza 2.5RS, like the one above, is somewhat of the last of its kind, in that Subaru stopped making coupe versions of the now-legendary performance sedan in 2000. Considering it also  “first high-performance Subaru Impreza in the US” status, and the 2.5RS seen here might be a collector car someday.

That said, this particular 2.5RS currently on sale on Bring a Trailer isn’t exactly in show-car condition, but it is an affordable way to get a taste of early-2000s AWD entertainment. From the factory, the Impreza 2.5RS pumped out 165 horsepower and 167 lb-ft of torque from its 2.5-liter flat four engine before sending that to all four wheels. With such a short wheelbase, the handling was sharp and responsive—the sort of behavior pro drivers might describe as “lively.”

The interior and exterior are in decent condition, except for a bit of corrosion on the undercarriage and in the engine bay—but for a car that spent its life in the Salt Belt and is showing 88,654 miles on the odometer, it’s par for the course. And the relative lack of aftermarket parts make this Impreza a bit of a rarity, as a lot of ’90s Japanese performance cars were modified to hell and back; this Subaru’s owner only added Borla headers and a cat-back exhaust to help the flat-four engine breathe a little better.

As of this writing, this 2000 Subaru Impreza 2.5RS is currently listed at $3,100 with two days left on the auction block, but don’t count on it staying that low; other examples of the 2.5RS from the same year with more than double the miles are selling elsewhere for a little over $10,000. Is owning a unique slice of Subaru history worth that kind of money? If you’ve ever driven one, the answer is an obvious yes.

The New Chevy Trailblazer Looks Great, But We Can’t Have It Yet

General Motors has never been the sort of carmaker to let a good name lie dormant. So when it came time to roll out a new compact Chevy crossover designed to appeal to those who want a hefty helping of style with their all-road utility, the automaker reached into its bin of badges and pulled out one sure to be familiar to any gearheads who remember the early Aughts. Without further ado: Meet the new 2020 Chevrolet Trailblazer.

GM yanked the cover off the new Trailblazer on Tuesday at Auto Shanghai, the Chinese auto show that, as that country’s new car marketplace has exploded, has grown into one of the world’s most notable automotive industry events. As one might expect based on the name, the new crossover bears a striking resemblance to the 2019 Chevy Blazer that went on sale earlier this year, with aggressive lines and a Clint Eastwood squint.

It’s a bit smaller than the new Camaro-inspired crossover now gracing showrooms—which, if anything, makes the angular face seem a little more proportionate than it does on the Blazer; the top set of lights don’t seem quite as thin, and the large trapezoidal headlights below them seem more appropriately-sized to the car’s front end than the Blazer’s tiny round lights. The sweeping lines of the flanks lead back from that broad face to a subtle-yet-pronounced set of hips above the rear axle, while above that, a darkened design element like an inverted version of the one seen on the Bolt EV takes some of the visual weight out of the heavy C-pillar.

The Trailblazer seen here comes in Redline trim, which brings with it black accents and red details, such as the hash marks on the wheels, the razor-thin lines on the mirrors, and the red nibs on the front fascia. Combined with the 17-inch black rims and the dark body cladding around the wheel arches, the whole look gives the vehicle a general impression of sportiness and casual off-road capability—one that certainly makes it pop amongst the fleets of generic compact crossovers out there, such as the Honda CR-V and Nissan Rogue.

How sporty it will actually feel from behind the wheel remains to be seen. Chevy’s announcement made no mention of powerplant, but given the vehicle’s size and the current GM powertrain options, a turbocharged inline-four like the 1.5-liter, 160-horsepower unit or the 2.0-liter, 250-hp one found in the Malibu seems probable—at least, for the US market.

We may have to wait to find out more about that, as it doesn’t seem like we’ll be able to buy the new Chevy Trailblazer in the United States for a little while; GM’s press release made no mention of Stateside sales. The authorities over at GM Authority say the 2020 Trailblazer will eventually go on to replace the ancient and little-loved Chevy Trax here in the US. Hey, Chevy: For what it’s worth, we’d say it’s worth fast-tracking this thing for America.

Lotus teases its sleek Type 130 electric hypercar

Lotus has shown a teaser image of a new concept, which will usher in the automaker’s electric era. The Type 130 hypercar concept will be shown later this year in London, but this aerodynamic teaser is the first glimpse at its shapely flanks. The Type 130 is said to be in “advanced stages of development.”

According to Lotus, the Type 130 will spawn a production version, which will be the brand’s first all-new vehicle in 11 years. It will be partially bankrolled by Lotus’ parent company, the Chinese carmaker Geely, which also owns Volvo. Despite that, the hypercar will not be built in China, but in England. An earlier Autocar article estimated the eventual price at around $2.6 million.

Last month, news broke that Lotus is also bringing another new car to market, but that one is likely to retain internal combustion technology along with engineering ties to older Lotus architecture, as it forms a sort of “bridge” between current Lotus products and its future cars. Hence, it can’t be called “all-new” in the same sense as a fully electric halo model can.

Lotus also noted some of its “firsts” when informing the media of the upcoming concept, which it calls “the world’s first full-electric British hypercar.” The 1995 Elise was the world’s first aluminum and bonded extrusion construction production car, while the 1957 Elite was a production first in the sense that it first brought the composite monocoque within the reach of customers. Between those, there was a lot of groundbreaking F1 knowhow: ground effects for the ’77 Type 78 F1 car, carbon fiber for the ’81 Type 88, and active suspension in 1983.

How Much Would You Pay for This Special 186 MPH BMW M1 Prototype

The Prototype Heads to Auction

Are you looking for an ultra-rare supercar that has some history to it? Do you love BMWs? Then we have the perfect suggestion. Buy this unique BMW M1 Prototype. The car broke the 186 mph (300 km/h) speed barrier in the 1980s and is a piece of automotive history. The historic moment happened at a BP Autogas event in 1981.

Italdesign was the company that crafted the M1’s now iconic shape. However, this particular prototype has plenty of custom body panels on it. The car has huge air scoops and a big wing on the back, making it one of the coolest M1’s we’ve seen.

BMW M1 PrototypeBMW M1 Prototype

According to Carscoops, the vehicle’s 3.5-liter six-cylinder engine got two turbochargers that boosted its horsepower all the way up to 401. Coy Auction is the auction house that will handle the sale. The auction house told Carscoops the car was stored in a garage for around 25 years. Many people thought it had been lost to history. Eventually, someone found it in a garage in East London.

It’s a super rare car in part because BMW only made around 450 of the M1, to begin with. This unique car is a one-of-a-kind item, and it will come with a price that reflects that. Pre-auction estimates have come in at about $327,000. That’s quite a lot of money for a barn find, but then this is a super unique car.

Karma Reveals the 2020 Revero GT With 528 HP

An Impressive Hybrid

While most of the news out there is about electric supercars and hypercars, the Karma 2020 Revero GT is one that’s a hybrid that should get people pretty excited. The car is made by the Chinese-backed Karma, which used to be Fisker Karma. The company revealed its new Revero GT at the Shanghai Auto Show.

The Revero GT is based on the previous car from Karma, but it features new bodywork, new technology, and much-improved performance. The car gets an all-new powertrain that the company developed with the help of an engine sourced from BMW. The Twin-Power 3-cylinder engine. The engine is the same as the one found in the BMW i8 plug-in hybrid. The company added to the powertrain upgraded batteries and more powerful electric motors. 

Altogether the vehicle makes 535 hp and can go for 80 miles on battery power alone before the gasoline engine kicks in to extend the range. The car can make a 0 to 60 mph sprint in just 4.5 seconds and has an electronically limited speed of 125 mph. Overall, it’s a major step forward for the brand and a serious competitor to the other vehicles out there.

The company also showcased a special design from Pininfarina and a concept vehicle at the show. The concept is meant to showcase that the company will eventually transition its vehicles to fully electric powertrains.

Wagon Lovers, Rejoice: The Audi RS 6 Avant Could Come to America

The crossover may be king these days, but there are still enough people out there who love its predcessor—the station wagon—to keep the breed alive. And that market apparently has enough room not just for jacked-up variants like the Subaru Outback, but for high performance versions, as well. The latest proof of that: The next-generation Audi RS 6 Avant may wind up being sold in the United States.

That’s the coy word from Audi Sport R&D head honcho Oliver Hoffmann, who said as much to Car and Driver in a recent interview.

“The U.S. market is increasingly interested in real station wagons like the RS 6 Avant, Hoffman told C/D. “Therefore, it is entirely possible that we will bring it back to North America.”

It comes as Audi Sport—the carmaker’s in-house performance division, which used to be known as “Quattro” until Audi presumably realized that was confusing as hell for most people who associate that word with the company’s all-wheel-drive system of the same name—prepares for what Hoffman described as “the biggest product offensive we ever had.” That onslaught will reportedly include RS versions of the Q8 four-door crossover coupe and the Q3 compact soft-roader, as well as the new RS 6 and its RS 7 Sportback sibling.

For the last five years, said RS 7 was the only way Americans could lay their hands on one of Audi’s fastest four-doors. While the RS 6 had been available in the States in the early Aughts during the C5-generation A6’s run, the carmaker chose to slice the car from the American lineup after that—and, indeed, without any version of its speediest sedan until the RS 7’s arrival in 2013.

Audi his staying tight-lipped about what sort of power the new RS 6 will crank out, but combining rumors, spy shots, and common sense paints a fairly realistic picture of what to expect. Unlike the new Audi S6 and S7, which switched to six-cylinder power for the 2020 model year, spy videos of the car at the Nurburgring reveal the RS 6 is expected to stick with turbocharged V-8 power—specifically, the biturbo 4.0-liter V-8 shared in various states of tune across the Audi, Bentley, Lamborghini, and Porsche lineups. Expect at least 600 horsepower—the outgoing RS 6 Avant sold in other markets seen above topped out at 597 hp and 553 pound-feet of torque in Performance trim—along with an eight-speed automatic tuned for snappy shifts and a power-shifting all-wheel-drive system to maximize grip. (A hybridized version could be in the cards at some point to add some electrified pep to the RS 6’s step, as well.)

Should all go as wagon fans hope and the RS 6 Avant does wind up arriving in US dealerships sometime soon, four-ring enthusiasts might consider sending a thank-you card to the nearest Mercedes-Benz dealership. Unlike Audi and BMW, Mercedes has consistently kept the wagon version of its middleweight super-sedan—the AMG E63—around in America, catering to a small-but-loyal cadre of very wealthy buyers…and a ravenous secondhand market on Bring a Trailer.

Audi prices 2020 TT RS, R8 V10, and R8 V10 Decennium

Audi nipped and tucked the skin of the 2020 TT RS while maintaining the fundamentals. That means the 2.5-liter turbocharged five-cylinder with 394 horsepower and 354 pound-feet of torque holds steady. The price, however, doesn’t. The damage comes to starting price $66,900 plus $995 for destination, totaling $67,895. That’s $2,020 more than the previous generation for finer lines and more colors.

The standard 2020 R8 V10 coupe starts at $169,900 before the $1,250 destination fee and the $1,300 gas guzzler charge. Those two line items bring the total to $172,450, whereas the Spyder goes for $184,650 after tallying everything up. Those models put out 562 hp and 406 lb-ft, increases of 30 hp and 7 lb-ft. They’re rated to go at least 200 miles per hour: 201 mph for the coupe, 200 for the Spyder. Both MSRPs represent a $5,000 increase over the 2018 model.

The R8 V10 Performance, which changed its name from R8 V10 Plus, doesn’t add any more puissance, staying on 602 hp and 413 lb-ft. They open the bidding at $198,450 for the coupe and $210,650 for the Spyder. As the two additional members in the lineup’s 200-mph club, the coupe will do 205 mph, the Spyder 204 mph. The new Performance coupe price has gone up by $1,500, but the Performance Spyder is the same price as the 2018 model.

At the top of the heap comes the limited-edition R8 V10 Decennium, which celebrates 10 years of the 5.2-liter V10 engine. Production is capped at 222 examples, only 50 of them coming to the U.S. If there are any places left in line, a buyer would need $217,545.

The TT RS and R8 series production models are due in showrooms in spring. Before then, we’ll see them at next week’s New York Auto Show.

Watch Now: An Oven for Pizza Idiots, the 2019 BMW X7 & More

In this episode of This Week In Gear: Eric Yang and Will Price test Breville’s countertop pizza oven, Henry Phillips discusses the $5K Leica Q2 and Nick Caruso raves about the all-new BMW X7. Also in this episode, a Bryan Campbell reviews the Honda Talon side-by-side – in 30 seconds – and AJ Powell explains why the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless earbuds are the last thing he bought.

This episode of This Week In Gear is presented by Crown & Caliber: the convenient online marketplace for pre-owned luxury watches. Visit to get $175 towards any watch purchase until May 31st.

Featured Products

Breville the Smart Oven® Pizzaiolo

“This thing is fuckin’ awesome at what it does. It works for the pizza idiot to the pizza savant.”


Leica Q2

“All the improvements feel iterative, deliberate and genuinely helpful to the end user. The Q was my general price-no-object recommendation for a great camera for basically everyone. The Q2 takes that place no problem.”


2019 BMW X7

The X7 very well may be everything great about BMW, fully realized.


Honda Talon SxS

“Add an exciting application of DCT technology and it’s fair to say that while the Talon 1000R and 1000X aren’t necessarily game changers, they’ve sure as hell raised the bar.”


Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless Earbuds

“I believe the Momentum earbuds could replace each headphone in my current rotation — including my Bowers & Wilkins P5 on-ear headphones.”


Note: Purchasing products through our links may earn us a portion of the sale, which supports our editorial team’s mission. Learn more here.

An Oven for Pizza Idiots, the 2019 BMW X7 & More

In this episode of This Week In Gear: Eric Yang and Will Price test Breville’s countertop pizza oven, Henry Phillips discusses the $5K Leica Q2 and Nick Caruso raves about the all-new BMW X7. Also in this episode, a Bryan Campbell reviews the Honda Talon side-by-side – in 30 seconds – and AJ Powell explains why the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless earbuds are the last thing he bought.

This episode of This Week In Gear is presented by Crown & Caliber: the convenient online marketplace for pre-owned luxury watches. Visit to get $175 towards any watch purchase until May 31st.

Featured Products

Breville the Smart Oven® Pizzaiolo

“This thing is fuckin’ awesome at what it does. It works for the pizza idiot to the pizza savant.”


Leica Q2

“All the improvements feel iterative, deliberate and genuinely helpful to the end user. The Q was my general price-no-object recommendation for a great camera for basically everyone. The Q2 takes that place no problem.”


2019 BMW X7

The X7 very well may be everything great about BMW, fully realized.


Honda Talon SxS

“Add an exciting application of DCT technology and it’s fair to say that while the Talon 1000R and 1000X aren’t necessarily game changers, they’ve sure as hell raised the bar.”


Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless Earbuds

“I believe the Momentum earbuds could replace each headphone in my current rotation — including my Bowers & Wilkins P5 on-ear headphones.”


Note: Purchasing products through our links may earn us a portion of the sale, which supports our editorial team’s mission. Learn more here.

This 1989 Nissan Skyline Will Make You Forget All About the New Supra

These days, buying a vintage Toyota Supra will set you back more than buying a new one. Instead of making a tough choice between a ’90s Supra and a down payment on a house, why not save some money and get even more attention at the local meetup with this JDM legend 1989 Nissan Skyline R32 on sale at Japanese Classics right now for a more reasonable $16,495?

Now, this isn’t the famous GT-R “Godzilla” Skyline R32; that car can be quite a bit more expensive. But the GTS-t Type M is still a rather special version. It has a turbocharged 2.0-liter inline six that delivered 212hp and 195lb-ft out of the box.It’s rear-wheel drive (the GT-R is AWD) and weighs just 2,844 pounds, which puts it near the power-to-weight ratio of the beloved Honda S2000.

This Skyline R32 comes with a five-speed manual and right-hand drive (because, y’know, it’s imported from Japan). When new, this car accelerated from 0-60mph in 5.9 seconds, which is amazingly quick for 1989.

While the Skyline R32 is a known favorite of tuners, this example is virtually 100-percent stock beneath the skin, even down to the clutch and the exhaust. The body also appears to be in excellent shape for a car this age not kept behind glass. It even has a still-functional factory-spec retractable front splitter.

This R32 does have 131,000 miles on the odometer, but don’t consider that a weakness. After all, if you’re buying a 30-year-old Japanese car you plan to drive, you want one that’s been driven regularly and well-maintained.

19-year-old creates insane caged Lamborghini Huracan rally car

If you’re looking at this car and thinking, “what the F?” or “why?” or “ruined!” or “money doesn’t buy taste,” then Alex Choi accomplished what he set out to do with this build. Being different brings out the negativity in people who don’t understand the desire to stand out, and that’s exactly what Choi wants: to be different. He calls it the Unicorn V3, and it’s now one of the wildest custom exotics in the saturated California car scene.

As indicated by the V3 tag, this is the third major overhaul of Choi’s Lamborghini Huracan, but he’s made numerous alterations since he first took delivery of the car in June 1, 2017. Choi, who also has a widebodied winged BMW “M2-R,” first gave the car a pink and blue camo scheme. Then he added a ski box, a wing, a carbon hood, and took off the rear bumper. For the Gold Rush Rally, he unveiled V2 with a pink BAPE wrap. He then gave the car underglow and put the rear bumper back on. V3 is the crazy creature seen above.

Before Unicorn V3 gets revealed, here’s the history of the Unicorn: June 1st, 2017, the Unicorn was born, and i took delivery of the car. V1️⃣.0️⃣: the pink and blue camo. V1️⃣.1️⃣: ski box!! V1️⃣.2️⃣: @ms.emelia enjoying her picnic on my new lunch table wing, with a new carbon hood, and joining the bumper delete gang. V2️⃣.0️⃣!!!: broke a lot of necks on Gold Rush Rally with a pink bape wrap. V2️⃣.1️⃣: Underglow. and due to popular request, i put the rear bumper back on. V3️⃣.0️⃣: expected launch date, April 9th, 2019. Twin turbo, and something else that has never ever been done before that will make everyone’s head explode, and be the most controversial Lamborghini, (or perhaps even car in general) to ever exist. 🤭 *not responsible for any head explosions

A post shared by Alex C (@alex.choi) on Mar 28, 2019 at 9:31pm PDT

Choi first upgraded the engine with Sheepey Race twin-turbo power. RSR then added “monkey bars,” as Choi calls them, a hand-crafted chromoly and stainless steel cage that surrounds the entire car. This look was inspired by the Flip Car from Fast & Furious 6. Speed Tech Lights added the Group B-inspired round rally lights up front, and gave it a roof-mounted light bar straight from a cop car.

The wheels were custom-made for Choi’s Lamborghini by Brixton Forged Wheels. They’re technically not new, but he changed the color from white to black. The Michelin PS4S tires also have white stickers that give a white wall impression when the car’s in motion. Enormous foot-long semi-truck cannon air filters on each side of the rear give it a very Star Wars-esque look, and on the driver’s side, there is a one-off air-to-air intercooler. The carbon fiber rear wing is also a carryover from V2, but it was raised a foot. Finally, Choi added a rear diffuser and flipped the rear taillights upside down to create an entirely different light signature.

Choi says the car’s major changes are done with, but he plans numerous small tweaks in the near future. If you’re one of the people who likes the car (this author included), he does regular updates on his Youtube and Instagram pages.

The 2020 Audi R8 Makes Its U.S. Debut in New York

It Is Now Stateside

The 2020 Audi R8 has finally arrived in America. The car was officially unveiled last fall, but now it has come to America. The will appear at the New York Auto Show. The Audi R8 underwent a facelift recently. It now has more aggressive styling. It’s the best looking the R8 has ever been.

The front fascia is different, with a unique honeycomb grille, and most of the other elements of the front end, including the headlights, hood, and bumper have been reworked. The car also has new side skirts, a new rear bumper, new rear diffuser, and a new spoiler. Inside, the cabin looks more or less the same. It features two new colors, though. They include Pastel Silver and Palomino Brown.

The supercar gets a 5.2-liter V10 that produces 562 hp and 406 lb-ft of torque. That engine is connected to a seven-speed S tronic transmission that filters power to all four wheels via Audi’s renown quattro all-wheel-drive system. Zero to 60 mph comes in a quick 3.4 seconds, and its top speed is 201 mph.

If that’s not enough, you can make the jump to the Audi R8 V10 performance and get 602 hp and 413 lb-ft of torque. This bumps the 0 to 60 mph time to 3.2 seconds and the top speed to 205 mph. The Audi R8 has always been a true performer, and now it looks better than ever, too.

There’s a roadster version of the car, too. It’s a little slower but other than the drop top, not all that different from the coupe version of the car.