2013 Ford Mustang teased online

November 15th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

The new 2013 Ford Mustang is on its way and is widely expected to be put on show later this week at the upcoming Los Angeles Auto Show. To get Mustang fans all hyped up the blue oval has dropped a teaser image showing some of the changes for the new model.

The four separate shots include cropped images of redesigned head- and taillights as well as upgraded instrumentation with Ford’s Track App display. The new Mustang is expected to borrow styling cues from the current Shelby GT500 model and this will mean more a more aggressive aesthetic.

Aerodynamics are also set to improve with the addition of a new chin splitter and rear spoiler. But for many fans, what’s in store for the new 2013 GT500 has them really excited. Continue reading “2013 Ford Mustang teased online” »

Nissan boosts power for 2012 model GT-R

November 8th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Every year since the GT-R debuted in 2007, Nissan has made tweaks for each model year. In keeping with this tradition the latest Godzilla has just been revealed with more power and a couple of new tricks.

The new 2012 GT-R is set to officially debut later this month at the 2011 Tokyo Motor Show.

There’s no point looking for any styling differences because there are none with the main changes being mechanical. Power has been increased with the twin-turbocharged engine now producing 404kW and 632Nm of torque. Previous models made 390kW and 612Nm so the difference will be likely be enough to feel, just.

Nissan are also claiming that engine response and torque at mid- and low-speeds, and power at high revolutions, has also been significantly improved. Surprisingly there are also claims that fuel efficiency has been improved from the current models 11.8l/100km rating but new figures haven’t been released yet.

The power increase comes largely from improved intake efficiency. Air flow resistance, for example, has been reduced by adding an intake manifold fitted to the head of each unit and the use of special resin in the enlarged air intake duct for the intercooler. The intercooler and exhaust system have also received treatment. Continue reading “Nissan boosts power for 2012 model GT-R” »

Renault Koleos Phase 2 arrives in NZ this month

October 12th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Renault’s new-look Koleos compact crossover arrives in NZ later this month with fresh styling and an updated equipment list.

The Koleos Phase 2 represents the first significant facelift for Renault’s inaugural compact SUV since it was originally launched in late 2008.

The Koleos is an important model in the NZ Renault range since the franchise was reinvigorated early this year. “The mix of models – 2WD and 4WD and both petrol and diesel engines has given the market a value for money choice,” said Stephen Kenchington, General Manager of Renault New Zealand.

The most popular model in NZ has been the 4WD Koleos with CVT transmission and standard leather upholstery and remains available as a free upgrade for $43,990.

Design changes on the Koleos Phase 2 include a revised interior and a new-look front-end that takes styling cues from Renault’s other Korean produced models, the Fluence and Latitude sedans. There’s a more rounded front bumper and all-new bonnet and front quarter panels that wrap around narrower headlights and a more traditional six-sided, three-bar chromed grille.

Inside, the Koleos will feature new seat upholsteries and interior trims, while the dashboard has been revised with a more contemporary instrument panel housing and lighting. Continue reading “Renault Koleos Phase 2 arrives in NZ this month” »

2012 Ford F-150 truck receives updates (+video)

October 4th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

The volume-selling Ford F-150 truck has been updated for 2012 with various mechanical and equipment updates in preparation for its next assault on the U.S market.

As Ford’s most popular truck, the F-150 has been subtly revised with styling updates that include a flashy new FX Appearance Package. This cosmetic upgrade is available on both FX4 and FX2 models and includes tinted headlights, graphics on the body, special badging, smoked lights and flat-black 20-inch alloy wheels. Inside, the FX model receives black leather seating surfaces with red piping, black-painted dash accents, brushed metal surfaces and a satin gear stick.

Mechanically, Ford has replaced its electronic shift-on-the-fly system with an enhanced two-speed automatic 4×4 set up that has an automatic mode for Lariat, King Ranch and Platinum trim levels. A Hill Start Assist feature has also been added across the range to help prevent the heavy truck from rolling backwards.

The SVT F-150 Raptor also gets some treatment with restyled wheels, revised graphics and a new Torsen front differential. There’s also a clever front camera system that allows drivers to view obstacles through the eight-inch cabin mounted screen. It can display at speeds up to 25 km/h and has a dedicated washer system to keep it clean. Continue reading “2012 Ford F-150 truck receives updates (+video)” »

2012 Holden Commodore updated with new features and colours

September 12th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Holden’s engineering team is busy developing the next-generation Commodore dubbed VF, but with this new model still two to three years away, there’s plenty of time for more tweaking of the current VE model.

For the 2012 model year, the Commodore will receive two new colours, modest exterior and interior enhancements, plus the inclsion of the track-inspired FE3 sports suspension on Redline variants.

Selected models receive chrome accents to highlight the Series II front fascia, while Omega is fitted with new 16-inch seven-spoke alloy wheels. A new lip spoiler enhances the styling of the luxury focused Calais V. The SS V-Series Redline Edition gets new forged and polished 19-inch alloy wheels plus painted rear brake calipers.

In the cabin, there’s silver stitching on the optional Onyx and Razor leather interior trim while the Redhot trim also receives some treatment. The iQ multimedia system has been updated to be compatible with the latest smartphones.

Holden’s colour and trim team has introduced two new exterior colors named Perfect Blue and Chlorophyll. The new blue hue pays homage to Australian motorsport icon Peter Brock and his famous Formula Blue HDT Group A VK SS Commodore that was launched back in 1985. Continue reading “2012 Holden Commodore updated with new features and colours” »

Updated 2012 Jaguar XJ sports sedan arrives in NZ

August 30th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Jaguar’s NZ distributor has just landed the updated 2012 version of its luxury flag ship – the XJ sports sedan. With new equipment and pricing for 2012 the XJ apparently allows for greater personalisation and flexibility of use, with the first models available in New Zealand now.

Prices for the 2012 model start from $155,000 and the new XJ now offers the Rear Seat Comfort pack. This feature allows the electric adjustment of the backrest recline angle, four-way lumbar support and a massage function. Increased comfort is also provided by new winged headrests and rear seat footrests. The Rear Seat Comfort pack is standard on the long wheel base Supersport model and an option on the others in the XJ range.

There are new interior colour combination for 2012, available with both the Premium Luxury and Portfolio trim levels. There’s a Jet/Ivory option that features ivory seating with contrast jet stitching, piping and upper surfaces while the headlining is available in either colour, according to customer preference.

“An XJ should be the ultimate in comfort, design and refinement. The bespoke interior changes  incorporated for the 2012 model make it an even more special car to drive or be driven in,” said Paul Ricketts, the brand manager for Jaguar New Zealand. Continue reading “Updated 2012 Jaguar XJ sports sedan arrives in NZ” »

Lexus reveals new 2013 GS sedan

August 19th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Lexus has just dropped the covers on its third-generation GS luxury sedan at a special event during the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance in California.

Visually, the new GS features more aggressive and bolder lines that its predecessor with a new ‘spindle’ trapezoidal grille that Lexus says will be a trademark of all future models. Other styling features include recessed headlamps with L-shaped LED daytime running lights and an aerodynamic body that takes cues from the smaller IS.

The new GS rides on a revised platform that is apparently more rigid thanks to the increased number of spot welds and laser weld work.

The GS suspension has been fully reworked with aluminum upper, and lower control arms for reduced unsprung weight and an updated rear subframe that works in with a new multilink set up. Putting on the anchors is ventilated disc brakes all around with four-piston calipers clamping at the front. Continue reading “Lexus reveals new 2013 GS sedan” »

Honda updates Jazz for 2012 with styling tweaks

August 19th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Honda has released details on its planned updates for the 2012 model Jazz hatchback. While the changes are subtle the Jazz sport receives styling tweaks and all models have interior changes and new standard features.

The 2012 Jazz Sport, will be updated cosmetically with a revised front grille and bumper, black headlight bezels and a darker, machined silver finish for the alloy rims.

In the cabin, a dark metallic dashboard trim replaces the previous gray and black themes, there’s now chrome accents around the instrumentation, plus standard steering wheel-mounted audio controls and new seat fabrics.

The entry-model Jazz gains colour-coded exterior mirror caps and freshly-styled wheel covers. All models in the range get new console-mounted center beverage holders along with new interior lighting, and added sound insulation. Continue reading “Honda updates Jazz for 2012 with styling tweaks” »

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