Kia Cerato Koup Turbo 2014 review

April 23rd, 2014 by Darren Cottingham

kia-cerato-koup-turbo-frontAs Kia’s first truly sporty car (the Sportage most definitely is not sporty), the Cerato Koup Turbo straddles the line between performance coupe and hot hatch(of which it has just released one in New Zealand in the form of the Pro_cee’d GT with the same engine, which hopefully we’ll be driving soon).  Continue reading “Kia Cerato Koup Turbo 2014 review” »

Lighter, Faster, More Agile: The New 911 Carrera to the Power of 4

August 30th, 2012 by Karen Joy Provo

The new Porsche 911 Carrera 4 blends the excellent performance and efficiency of the new generation of the 911 Carrera with the dynamic benefits of the latest version of the active all wheel drive system PTM (Porsche Traction Management).

The typical Porsche all-wheel drive with rear-focused layout in this latest 911 version guarantees maximum vehicle dynamics on a wide variety of road surfaces and in all weather conditions.

The new all-wheel drive 911 is available in four variants – as the 911 Carrera 4 and 911 Carrera 4S in both Coupé and Cabriolet body styles. They sport the same traits as the rear-wheel drive versions: their lightweight body design, suspension, engines and gearboxes are identical; the only exception being modifications related to the all-wheel drive.

Despite a higher level of engine and driving performance, all four models consume significantly less fuel than the models they replace – up to 16 per cent, in fact. Additionally, the new 911 Carrera 4 is up to 65 kg lighter.

The most distinct identifying feature of the 911 with all-wheel drive is still the wide rear body: compared to the two-wheel drive 911 Carrera models, the extended rear wheel arches combine to produce a body that is 44 mm wider at the rear, and the rear tyres are also 10 mm wider. The traditional red light band that connects the two tail lights has also taken on a new look.

Porsche Intelligent Performance: high levels of driving performance, low fuel consumption\

The C4 models have a 7-speed manual gearbox as standard with the Porsche Doppelkupplung (PDK) gearbox available as an option. The 911 Carrera 4 Coupé with 257 kW sprints from zero to 100 km/h
in as little as 4.5 seconds (Cabriolet: 4.7 secs) and has a top speed of up to 285 km/h (Cabriolet: 282 km/h). Fuel consumption with PDK is 8.6 L/100 kms (CO2 203 g/km) for the Coupé and 8.7 L/100 kms (CO2 205 g/km) for the Cabriolet.

The Coupé and Cabriolet of the 911 Carrera 4S each have a 3.8-litre rear-mounted boxer engine producing 294 kW; enabling acceleration to 100 km/h in 4.1 secs (Cabriolet: 4.3 secs) and a top speed of 299 km/h (Cabriolet: 296 km/h). Fuel consumption with PDK is 9.1 L/100 kms (CO2 215 g/km) for the Coupé and 9.2 L/100 kms (CO2 217 g/km) for the Cabriolet.

New: all-wheel drive indicator, Porsche Active Safe, sliding glass sunroof, extended Sport Chrono pack

In the new 911 Carrera 4, a new menu in the instrument cluster informs the driver how the PTM allwheel drive is currently distributing engine power. Additionally, with the debut of the 911 Carrera allwheel drive models Porsche is introducing optional Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) to the range, which controls distance to traffic ahead and vehicle speed.

When ordered with PDK, the ACC system adds the safety function Porsche Active Safe (PAS), which helps to prevent front-end collisions. In addition, Porsche offers a new sliding glass sunroof as an optional for the 911 Carrera Coupé. Driving 911 cars with a manual gearbox and Sport Chrono pack can now be even sportier: In Sport Plus mode, the system automatically double-declutches (blips the engine) during downshifts.

The new all-wheel drive models replace a very successful previous generation, of which a total of about 24,000 units were sold since 2008.

This represents a 34 per cent share of total sales of second generation 997 models. This previous generation launched with one of the greatest development steps in powertrain technology that the 911 with all-wheel drive ever made: new were the engines with direct petrol injection, Porsche Doppelkupplung (PDK) gearbox and electronically controlled Porsche Traction Management (PTM). In July 2011, Porsche crowned the all-wheel drive model series with the 911 Carrera 4 GTS, whose 3.8-litre engine was boosted to 300 kW.

World premiere at the Paris International Motor Show

The new Porsche 911 Carrera with all-wheel drive will make its first public appearance at the 2012 Paris International Motor Show in late September.

New Zealand deliveries will commence in the first quarter of 2013 with local specification and pricing to be announced shortly.

Subaru BRZ rumoured to have more power than Toyota FT-86 brother

October 27th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

The joint development of a lightweight sports coupe between Subaru and Toyota has provided much rumour and speculation. While Toyota has shown its hand at every opportunity with its FT-86 concepts, much little is known about Subaru’s mysterious BRZ. But with both cars set for world premiers at next month’s Tokyo Motor Show, interest has reached fever pitch.

Up until now, Toyota has tantalized us with three versions of its RWD coupe, while Subaru has revealing only a transparent concept in Geneva and Frankfurt with very little details.

Now Subaru, which has performed most of the engineering work providing the 2.0-litre flat-four engine that will power both cars, has revealed some very interesting facts in a recent interview. Continue reading “Subaru BRZ rumoured to have more power than Toyota FT-86 brother” »

BMW unleashes 6-Series Coupe into NZ market

October 10th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

BMW has released its new 6 Series Coupe in the NZ market with the sports-focused GT car slotting into the German car maker’s expanding model range.

Powering the BMW 650i is a 4.4-litre eight-cylinder engine which develops a maximum 300 kW and peak torque of 600 Nm.  It is partnered with an eight-speed Sports automatic gearbox as standard. Steering wheel paddles are included and M gearshift logic.

“The all-new BMW 6 Series Coupe is the perfect mix of performance and pleasure and over-delivers on all expectations,” said the Managing Director of BMW New Zealand, Mark Gilbert. The design of the Coupe epitomises BMW dynamism, as one only has to note the stance of the new model to understand its potential.  As anticipated, its all-round performance is exhilarating and the aural experience created by the optional M-Sport package featuring unique exhaust tuning has to be heard to be appreciated.

The new 6-Series has extra length and width over its predecessor and a 5-millimetre lower height to produce a low-slung and athletic design. Continue reading “BMW unleashes 6-Series Coupe into NZ market” »

BMW confirms production of X4

September 26th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Online reports are claiming that BMW has confirmed production plans to build an X4 crossover. The new entry into BMW’s SUV range will slot in between the X3 and X5 models.

The X4 will likely use the same platform as the current X3 and will be positioned like the X6 (pictured) is to the X5. Expect the X4 to have more raked-back sportier styling than the X3 and a coupe like roof line. In terms of powertrains the X4 will use the same four- and six-cylinder turbocharged options as the X3. A higher-output X4 M is also on the cards for future production.  Continue reading “BMW confirms production of X4” »

Subaru names new RWD coupe – the BRZ

August 24th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

When it was first revealed that Toyota and Subaru would collaborate in developing a low-cost, RWD sports coupe, fans of both brands were suitably excited. Since then it’s been all about the Toyota FT-86 with Subaru keeping much more quiet about the development of its version. Toyota has already unveiled several preview concepts of the FT-86 and all Subaru has given loyal fans is some images of the vehicles frame. But now that’s set to change.

The Frankfurt Motor Show is on in a couple of weeks and will be the scene for Subaru to reveal a ‘technology concept’ of its take on the sports coupe. While announcing its plans, Subaru announced the name of its new creation – BRZ.

What does it mean? BRZ stands for Boxer Rear-drive Zenith and will be used firstly on the concept called the BRZ Prologue. While it’s unknown exactly what a technology concept really is, expect at least some of the questions surrounding the BRZ to be answered at the Frankfurt show.

Until then, enjoy the name BRZ, feel free to say it out loud and use it to impress friends with your knowledge of future Subaru products. Or click here to go to Subaru’s BRZ teaser website.

Cadillac confirms production for electric ELR Coupe (+video)

August 19th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Cadillac’s smooth styled ELR Coupe has been given the green light for production. With its sharp looks and range-extending hybrid drivetrain, General Motors has high hopes for the luxury two-door.

The model was originally shown as the Cadillac Converj concept at the 2009 Detroit Motor Show, rumours have been around ever since that it would enter production. Now, development has been officially confirmed with the new model, named the ELR Coupe, heavily borrowing technology from the Chevrolet Volt.

“The concept generated instant enthusiasm,” said Don Butler, vice president-Cadillac Marketing. “Like other milestone Cadillac models of the past, the ELR will offer something not otherwise present – the combination of electric propulsion with striking design and the fun of luxury coupe driving.”

No official specs have been released but Cadillac has confirmed its ELR will use a version of the same Voltec drivetrain as the Volt, but possibly a more advanced set up. This will feature a T-shaped lithium ion battery, an electric drive unit, and a four-cylinder engine-generator. Continue reading “Cadillac confirms production for electric ELR Coupe (+video)” »

BMW 1 Series M Coupe 2011 Review

August 15th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

The 2011 BMW 1-Series M Coupe is certainly special, a one-off offering from the M-division that has raised suspicion from purists and excitement from badge fans. But what exactly makes it so unique? Is it because by being based on BMW’s entry level 1-Series a new M-car is more affordable than ever before? Or is it because of the 1M’s turbocharged engine and M3-borrowed running gear? Or maybe because it will be built for just one model year with only 14 units making their way to NZ? Or does it just go totally hard? Car and SUV had a chance to pilot the new 1-Series M on a rapid-paced voyage of discovery for the answers.

It hasn’t been an easy birth for the 1M, some have labeled it a parts-bin car because of its extensively shared components with others saying it’s cheapening the M range with its budget 1 Series donor body. But neither of these accusations is accurate. True the 1M is the new lightweight of the M Division stable but it’s quick, feisty and can throw a heavy punch when provoked. Continue reading “BMW 1 Series M Coupe 2011 Review” »

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