Next year will see the introduction of the all-new, next-generation MINI Hatch. Like the previous versions, the new 2014 MINI looks back to the original for inspiration. It features significant improvements in technology, engine efficiency and power delivery, driving dynamics, quality and personalisation. Inside, the new MINI is quieter than the outgoing model, with improvements to acoustic refinement inside the cabin.
The body of the new MINI is 3,821mm long (MINI Cooper S is 3,850mm), 1,727mm wide and 1,414mm tall. This makes it 98mm longer, 44mm wider and 7mm taller than its predecessor. The wheelbase has been extended by 28mm, while the track width has been enlarged at the front by 42mm and at the rear by 34mm.
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Zender, a German tuning company which closed its “aftersales tuning” division in 2008, but carried on as a smaller company selling their products through other companies, quietly displayed a high-performance Fiat 500 Abarth concept called the Zender Abarth Corsa Stradale at the Frankfurt Motor Show earlier this month.
The Zender Abarth 500 Corsa Stradale Concept features an aggressive new bodykit – made from carbon fiber – which is in-keeping with the rest of the car’s design, lowered sports suspension, and 18-inch multi-spoke alloy wheels with Pirelli P Zero tires. One of the surprises of the concept is the clamshell front end which replaces the standard hood. This whole assembly tilts forward to allow access to the engine bay.
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One of the vehicles which will be on display at the Toyota stand during the upcoming Frankfurt Motor Show will be the Toyota Yaris Hybrid-R. The car is based on a three-door production model Yaris, and that’s where the similarities end. Because in place of the standard Yaris Hybrid drivetrain is a motorsport-developed hybrid setup which makes use of a Toyota Motorsport-designed race-ready turbocharged four-cylinder engine, and no less than three electric motors.
The 1.6 litre internal combustion engine produces 235 horsepower and delivers it all to the front wheels. Meanwhile on the rear axle are two 60 horsepower electric motors, one for each wheel. The two electric motors work as electric generators when the car is braking, and assist the engine during acceleration.
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The Peugeot 308 R Concept will make its world debut in a couple of weeks time at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show. The 308 R is powered by the same 266 horsepower 1.6 litre turbocharged 4-cylinder engine used in the Peugeot RCZ-R. All that power, and the 243 lb-ft (330 Nm) of torque, is channeled through the front wheels via a six-speed manual gearbox and limited-slip differential.
Enhancing the 308 R’s appearance is a wider and lower body which sits on 19-inch wheels. More powerful brakes are also part of the package. Most obvious of all though is the striking two-tone paint job which sees the front two-thirds of the car painted bright red, and the final third finished in a dark satin grey.
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At the 2013 Concorso Italiano, which takes place August 16 at Laguna Seca Golf Ranch in Monterey, California, Fiat will introduce a special edition version of the 500 called the 500 Cattiva. In Italian, “Cattiva” can describe a person or situation that is naughty yet cool.
The limited-production Fiat 500 Cattiva provides the 500 Sport and 500 Turbo models with a factory-tuned look inspired by the FIAT Design concept that debuted at the 2013 North American International Auto Show. The aggressive styling approach starts with blacked-out headlamp, taillamps and parking lamp surrounds and unique 16-inch Hyper Nero painted aluminum wheels. Changes also include a gloss black painted roof and spoiler. Exterior paint colors for the 2013 Fiat 500 Cattiva include red, copper, black, silver, granite crystal, white, and light blue – 500 Sport only.
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The Frankfurt Motor Show, as usual, is shaping up to be a big one. It’s still four weeks away and yet several major manufacturers have let slip what they’ll be bringing along to the party. Kia is the latest to tease their wares on the ‘net, publishing some artistic renders which show a B-segment supermini concept designed to fit in under the Rio and cee’d models.
Kia say the new concept is “playful but gutsy, sturdy yet impish”, whatever that means. The car was designed in Europe and is specifically aimed at European buyers. The car was designed to appeal to small car buyers who don’t necessarily want a compact car feel. To that end Kia say their concept features intruiging elements not usually found on smaller cars.
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Emeric Baubant is the man who answered the unasked question, “what would a compact car from Porsche look like?”
Baubant is a design student at the ISD (Institut Superieur de Design) in Valenciennes, France. He created the Porsche 822 Compact concept during his time as an intern at the Porsche Design Studio in Austria. So while his concept might not be an officially sanctioned Porsche design, you can be sure designers at Porsche have at the very least glanced at it.
The Porsche 822 Compact was designed to compete with the likes of the BMW 1M, Mercedes A45 AMG and Audi RS3, a segment Porsche has never competed in, and probably won’t for the forseeable future. The styling of the 822 Compact is Porsche through-and-through, there’s no mistaking that. It kind of reminds me of a slightly squished two-door Panamera.
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MINI has just surprised everyone with a concept debuted at the MINI Design@Home event in Munich, Germany. The MINI Vision is a taster of what’s to come for the third-generation of MINI three-door hatchbacks. The concept features a number of futuristic styling and technology advances, some of which will make it into the new car, some of which probably won’t.
The MINI Vision concept retains the chunky, almost cartoon-like proportions and design features for which the new MINI has become famous. The MINI Vision appears to share a few styling cues with the MINI Rocketman concept from 2011. Including the rounded LED headlights, grille with integrated driving lights, and contrasting-colored body panel which continues in-line with the A-pillar and fits in between the front wheel arch and door. Sadly the Rocketman’s bizarre handle-shaped taillights are gone, replaced by more familiar rectangular units.
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MG just unveiled the full range of styles available for the Uk-version of the new MG3. It’s pretty clear MG are taking a leaf out of MINI’s playbook and trying to inject some individuality into the car’s design.
MG say that from launch, MG3 customers will be able to personalise both the exterior and interior of the new supermini. With three trim levels, 10 colors and a range of at least 10 graphic packs, it might not have the same ludicrously large options list as the MINI. But it should be enough to accommodate most tastes.
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Renault chose to unveil their latest concept car at one of the most famous automobile events in the world, the Monaco Grand Prix. While the race itself takes place on Sunday, the entire weekend is just one big build-up before the green lights come on. Renault’s decision to debut their concept at such a notorious race is an obvious reflection of the car itself.
The Renault Twin’Run might look almost identical to the earlier Renault Twin’Z concept, and indeed both cars are a preview of the next Renault Twingo city car. But whereas the Twin’Z was a mild-mannered electric car, the Twin’Run is a custom built race car based around a motorsport grade tubular chassis. Into this Renualt’s engineers have wedged a 3.5 litre V6 engine borrowed from a Megane Trophy race car. The mid-mounted engine produced 320 horsepower @ 6,800 rpm and 380 Nm of torque @ 4,850 rpm. The transmission is a six-speed sequential unit with limited slip differential. The 0-62 mph sprint takes just 4.5 seconds. The top speed is 155 mph.
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