All posts in “Spy Shots”

Sunday Drive: From a mid-engine ‘Vette to a restomod RV

Automotive enthusiasts are a diverse bunch. As proof, we present last week’s top posts on Autoblog, starting with some really good spy photos of the upcoming mid-engine Chevrolet Corvette. Will it be sold alongside a classic front-engine ‘Vette? We have no idea, but we can’t wait to find out.

Up next is a pickup truck. Can’t get much further from a supercar, right? At least both the Corvette and the 2019 Ram 1500 – which will debut a radical new design that appears to eschew the mini big-rig look of past Rams in favor of something more refined – are both American.

Decidedly not American? The Mercedes-Benz G-Class SUV. The boxy off-road ‘ute looks a heck of a lot like the old one, which is probably a good thing, but we know it’ll be fancier and more luxurious than ever before. Check out the leaked images below.

Also hailing from Germany, but sharing absolutely nothing else in common at all, is the Audi A4 Allroad. We’ve been driving this all-wheel-drive wagon for a while now, and we like it quite a bit. And, last but not least, is a 1959 bus that’s been converted into an RV.

Like we said, y’all certainly are a diverse bunch.

Mid-engine Corvette Mid-engine Corvette — our clearest pictures yet

Ram 1500 spy shot 2019 Ram 1500 shows its full face

Mercedes G-Class leak 2019 Mercedes-Benz G-Class revealed in leaked photos

Audi A4 Allroad 2018 Audi A4 Allroad Drivers’ Notes Review | Wagons still rule

1959 Mercedes-Benz O 319 bus This Mercedes O 319 restomod camper van shames your VW Microbus

BMW i8 Spyder on track for 2019

We’re getting an up-close look today at the 2019 BMW i8 Spyder, which appears ready for production. We saw the open-air hybrid supercar in February testing in the snow, and today we’re seeing it cruising during warmer conditions, though the top is still up.

The Spyder will grow the i8 lineup beyond the scissor-door coupe. It looks like the open-air model will use a targa-style roof. Otherwise, it appears identical to the hardtop, with futuristic design punctuated by flashy wheels and piercing LED headlights. There’s also a Canadian flag and the word “Bruno,” likely for BMW factory driver Bruno Spengler, on the roof pillar. Maybe he’s helping out with the testing.

Naturally, it will share underpinnings with the fixed-roof i8, employing an aluminum chassis and carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic cell. The i8 coupe has a total hybrid output of 357 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque, enabling sprints to 60 miles per hour in 4.2 seconds.

You might remember we named named the i8 the 2014 Technology of the Year. The Spyder will likely debut later this year, perhaps at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September.

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Ferrari dips into its parts bin to test a Dino, or something

“It’s a when not an if. We know that it [Dino] is an under-used resource, but that’s why we need to get it right.” – Sergio Marchionne

We know Ferrari is thinking about bringing back the Dino. This might be it. Or not.

Spy shooters snapped this prototype during winter testing in Sweden, sparking speculation the long-hoped for Dino could return. Witnesses said the mule didn’t sound like it had a V8, suggesting the 2.9-liter V6 turbo developed by Ferrari for the Alfa Romeo Giulia was instead providing power.

Fiat Chrysler chief Sergio Marchionne said back in 2015: “It’s a when not an if. We know that it [Dino] is an under-used resource, but that’s why we need to get it right.” He also suggested a 500-hp V6 would be the right fit for a new Dino. That Alfa engine makes 505 ponies in the Giulia’s Quadrifoglio trim

But those comments are nearly two years old, when Ferrari was owned by Fiat Chrysler. Ferrari was spun off in the fall of 2015, though Marchionne remains head of the supercar maker in addition to leading FCA.

But what are we actually looking at here? There’s bits of both the 488 GTB and its predecessor, the 458 Italia, Frankensteined together onto the prototype. There are huge tailgun exhausts in back. The car is testing on a snowy road. Could in fact Ferrari be shaking down an all-wheel-drive 488 variant? A high performance version?

On the other hand, the Dino was a mid-engine car, and the similar layout of the 458/488 line makes for a fitting testbed. Perhaps Ferrari is using that body style to conceal the identity of an all-new project like the Dino. Or perhaps…

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