Archive for Upcoming cars

Murray T25

Posted in Car conception, Green Tech, Upcoming cars with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on 28/06/2010 by Alexander

Gordon Murray’s long-awaited small urban car has finally been unveiled: the T25. Now for something so anticipated, and being associated to the resounding name of the McLaren F1 guru, the hype is considerable. This may very well go against it, in a Segway sort of way, since everyone was expecting something like Colani’s Egg and what they’ve got is a three-seat Smart car.

Comparisons to the Smart car are inevitable. So-called compact parking, reduced engine, low top-speed, etc.,etc. If based solely on this, the T25’s outlook is grim. Smart cars are the vehicle of choice for all sorts of stupid drivers who go far too fast in town and simply screw other drivers over with their selfish parking, but I’ve covered that. The three-seater concept seems interesting, but it’s a bit specific. This probably only appeals to one-child families, or people with only two friends, although the one-child families would fancy a decent boot.

So it seems to have all the pros and cons of a Smart plus an extra seat. What’s so revolutionary about that? The big thing about this car is its manner of manufacture, called iStream that “slashes the investment, factory space and energy required for manufacturing”, and that could be the entire basis for its success. Applied to other cars, then this may be truly revolutionary, in a Ford Model T sort of way. The official details also suggest the scheme could be used for non-automotive purposes, without which the sound of things were enticing enough.

This could also mean the rebirth of British-owned motoring industry. Which is nice.


Latest on the S60

Posted in Desirable machines, News, Upcoming cars with tags , , , on 10/02/2010 by Alexander

Autocar has posted some novelties regarding the upcoming incarnation of the Volvo S60, namely some interior shots and a list of engines. Portuguese site Autoportal has some additional information, namely the engine’s designations, which are rather interesting. Volvo’s T5, T6 and D5 were always cool (though I am biased, I have a T5), and this new power plant line-up expands to such designations as D3 and T4. Here’s the list of the initial range to choose from:

2.0T – turbocharged 2-litre straight-4, 203bhp (One could initially assume that te 2.0T was straight-5 like the old one, but alas, Autocar reports it’s not so).
T6 – turbocharged 3-litre straight-6, 304bhp and 4WD.

D3 – turbocharged 2-litre straight-5, 163bhp.
D5 – turbocharged 2.4-litre straight-5, 205bhp (already available on the latest S80).

Apart from these, later on there’ll be more petrol units added to the range. Autocar and Autoportal diverge on the number, with the British mag saying it’ll be two, and the Portuguese portal saying it’s three. Also, Autocar says the new ones will be straight-4’s, while Autoportal say one of these will be a straight-5 and two other straight-4’s.

Those who have accompanied S60 news will recognise the 1.6-litre, straight-4, turbocharged, direct injection, 180bhp unit, first called the 1.6 GTDi. Autoportal calls it the T4. This will sit in between the T3 (a 1.6-litre, 150bhp engine, probably a detuned version of the T4) and the latest incarnation of the T5 (2.0-litre, 240bhp – again, a retuned variation of an existing engine).

I’d be very interested to know the consumption figures, since all I can find is a 5,9l/100km (48mpg) for the D5. The D3 sounds especially miserly, and a DRIVe version would be spectacular.

Amazing! Upcoming Peugeots may not be crap

Posted in Crap cars, Desirable machines, Upcoming cars with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on 25/11/2009 by Alexander

After slagging off Peugeot, and especially the 3008 quite ruthlessly, here’s an entry to prove I’m not a mindless Peugeot hater. The above image came from here, and the fanfair is grand.

Take a look at Peugeot’s new baby coupé! Auto Express has learned that the Lion is getting ready to roar into the small sports car market with this sensational 2+2, which boasts Ferrari style at an affordable price tag.

Phwoar! A insy-bitsy Ferrari! I’m being a little sarky, but let’s be honest: it looks good. Gone are the ridiculous Peugeot grills and exaggeratedly swept-back headlamps. This seems promising! Let’s read on:

Small coupés are big news! You don’t need big engines and a huge price tag to have fun, which is why pint-sized sports cars are making a comeback.

And we’re then treated to a list of future coupés that fill the above criteria, which stupidly include a MINI Coupé (a stupid concept, since the MINI is already coupé-ish, and if you look at the pictures it resembles a MINI that’s previously had cartload of bricks tipped on it) and a Toyota Prius Coupé (?!?!?? I thought a criterion was it had to be fun and pint-sized? How can a bloated, soulless object like a Prius ever be either?).

But is the news of this Peugeot coupé too good to be true? Yes. Sifting through the comments, an interesting datum popped up. The Hyundai Veloster Coupé concept looks suspiciously similar. In fact, it’s obvious this Peugeot coupé was Photoshopped from the Hyundai, which gives us two possibilities; either Peugeot is teaming up with Hyundai to give us a common platform car; or the most certain, AutoExpress has been duped. Besides, after the announcement of the 308 RC Z, it would be stupid for Peugeot to compete with itself before the 308 RC Z was even available.

But fear not! If you, for some unfathomable, irrational, bile-swelling reason have a fancy for the Lion brand, Peugeot have decided to make a car that, at first glance doesn’t completely suck.

Dubbed the 508, it marks the return of the “5” at the beginning of the designation, and harks back to my personal Peugeot favourite, the 504. It’s based on the RC HyMotion 4 concept of 2008, which shows Peugeot at least manages to make good use of its nicer concepts, unlike, say, Citroën, who ignore the C-Airplay. But I digress. This 508 car looks crackingly good, and not just for a Peugeot. It reminds me of an old Bugatti four door saloon, the EB112, which never saw the light of day. It has the same sort of profile and fundamental concept.

In conclusion, it’s a sign that upcoming Peugeots may not be dreary crap after all.

Citroën C-Cactus/Essentialle

Posted in News, Upcoming cars with tags , , , , , , , on 29/09/2009 by Alexander

Photos of Citroën’s upcoming C-Cactus-based economical hatchback have been leaked.

Rumours are rife that Citroen is planning to establish a new eco-brand to sit below its standard models, which in turn sit below the recently introduced DS premium range. Called ‘Essentiale’ the new sub-brand would focus on low-weight, simplicity of design and affordability – and the C-Cactus is mooted to be the first member of the Essentiale family when it goes on sale in 2012.

The philosophy of simplicity and ditching of superfluous equipment places the C-Cactus as a spiritual succesor to cut-price Citroens of the past such as the legendary 2CV and lesser-known Citroen Visa. If the 2007 concept is anything to go by, the entire dash structure could be ditched to cut weight and provide additional room in the cabin.

The interior might be purposefully low-tech, but under the bonnet a three-cylinder diesel engine mated to an electric motor should provide class-leading fuel economy, and mark the start of a new wave of cheap but reliable hybrids.

I personally would’ve preferred a dead ringer for the Citroën C-Airplay, one of the best-looking concepts Citroën has come up with in recent years. This model isn’t exactly ugly, though I do have my reservations on Citroën’s new front grill aesthetics, based upon the dubiously-styled new brand symbol.