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Complete Round-Up from 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show

by on Sep.21, 2015

Missed the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show? No problem. Check out everything from the industry’s smallest convertible to the world’s most expensive SUV. Click Here for’s complete wrap-up.

Bentley Bentayga Offering World’s Most Expensive In-Car Clock

Queen Elizabeth II expected to take delivery of first Bentley SUV.

by on Sep.18, 2015

The new Bentley Bentayga will offer an optional clock as expensive as the SUV itself.

If you’re going to build the world’s most expensive SUV, it might seem logical to offer the world’s most expensive in-car clock, as well.

At least, that’s what Bentley plans to do when it starts rolling out the new Bentayga in a few months. The full-size ute, with its leather and wood-lined cabin will start at $229,100 in the U.S. But you can bump that up with a variety of options – including the Breitling Mulliner Turbillon clock.

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While a final price hasn’t been set, it’s expected to come in at around £150,000, or roughly $234,000 – which could make it more expensive than the “base” Bentley Bentayga. The maker justifies the price by explaining the clock has “the most complex of watch mechanisms.”


Mazda Reveals New Design Direction with Koeru Concept

Automaker’s show car aims to “go beyond.”

by on Sep.17, 2015

Mazda's Koeru concept hints at the evolving direction of the maker's distinctive design language.

With its sweeping lines, blacked out B pillars and floating roof, the Mazda Koeru is one of the more distinctive concept vehicles to make its debut at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show. It’s also one of the more likely to influence future design direction.

While they seldom actually go into production, Mazda has a long history of telegraphing its styling strategy through its concept vehicles, and the Koeru is the latest example. It picks up and builds upon the Japanese maker’s current Kodo design language.

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It wasn’t an accident that Mazda decided to go with a crossover body style for the new concept vehicle, after traditionally favoring coupes and sedans. Insiders say the first examples of where Koeru’s lines will reappear could be replacements for the Mazda CX-9 and CX-7 crossover vehicles.


First Look: Ferrari 488 Spider

Lightweight power hardtop opens in 14 seconds.

by on Sep.16, 2015

The 488 Spider's drop top was designed to add minimal weight to the sports car.

You already know the Ferrari 488 Spider is going to be fast, but that extends to the new folding hardtop, as well, which will retract in a mere 14 seconds, the Italian automaker announced during the preview of the new cabriolet at this week’s Frankfurt Motor Show.

The Spider is the open-air version of the only recently launched Ferrari 488 GTB, and with the top up, the two models bear a strong visual resemblance. The good news is that they also share the same basic performance specs thanks to the design of the top which adds only a modest amount of mass to the new model.

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Cutting the roof off is always a challenge for Ferrari engineers. It not only risks adding weight, but weakening a car’s chassis and worsening aerodynamics. The maker claims it was able to overcome all three of those potential problems.


Volkswagen, Audi Expect to “Electrify” Entire Line-Up

Conventional gas models could be dropped in favor of hybrids, plug-ins, battery-electric vehicles.

by on Sep.16, 2015

The Audi e-tron Quattro SUV Concept will be followed by a production model around 2018.

Long focused on high-mileage diesels, Volkswagen and its luxury arm Audi are suddenly getting charged up about battery power. So much so, in fact, that virtually all of the vehicles sold by both the mainstream VW and high-line Audi brands will offer some form of “electrified” options in the near future.

The German brands may even start dropping some conventional gas and diesel models in favor of hybrids, plug-ins and pure battery-electric vehicles, officials noted during a series of interviews at the Frankfurt Motor Show. Even sibling brands Bentley and Porsche are getting into the battery act, the former planning a new plug-in SUV, and the sports carmaker coming to Frankfurt with a 600-horsepower performance model.

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“Every car will be electrified,” said Ulrich Hackenberg, the board member overseeing technical development at Audi. And while new fuel economy and emissions mandates are factors driving the shift, he also believes that consumers will find the next generation of electrified vehicles attractive and compelling.


Nissan Gets a Gripz on the Next Juke

A hint of a sportier Juke to come.

by on Sep.15, 2015

The Nissan Gripz Concept aims to blend the functionality of a Juke with the sportiness of a 370Z.

Even before it rolled onto the stage at the Frankfurt Motor Show on Tuesday, the Nissan Gripz was already generating some wild rumors suggesting it might be anything from the next Juke crossover to a replacement for the Nissan 370Z sports car.

In a sense, both of those ideas are accurate. No, the Z-car isn’t going away, but today’s buyers want something more than the minimal soft-roaders of years past, and the Gripz suggests the next-generation Juke will bring not only the flexibility and utility of a crossover vehicle, but also the fun-to-drive characteristics of a sports cars.

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Exactly how much of the Gripz concept will carry over into production remains to be seen, but expect to see some key elements, including the so-called V-Motion grille, which Nissan global creative director Shiro Nakamura confirmed will be the new face of Nissan products.


Toyota C-HR Moves Closer to Production

Concept crossover features new, advanced hybrid system.

by on Sep.15, 2015

Toyota appears to be moving closer to entering the compact crossover segment with the latest C-HR.

Toyota is driving into Frankfurt with a new small crossover and a new design language.

A year after unveiling the original C-HR concept, the Japanese maker is back with an updated design that appears to be a step closer to production. The updated version of the Toyota C-HR also appears to help the Japanese maker pull together in a cohesive whole some of the design details it has been showing off in other recent offerings, including the new Camry and Corolla models.

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“This highly innovative design study for a stylish, lightweight and dynamic hybrid crossover is designed to stand out in an increasingly homogeneous marketplace,” Toyota declared in a release describing its plans for the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show.


BMW Cancels Frankfurt Debuts After CEO Collapses

Bavarian maker cancels Frankfurt news conference.

by on Sep.15, 2015

BMW CEO Harald Krueger unexpectedly collapses as he begins his opening comments. Photo courtesy AP.

The Frankfurt Motor Show got off to an unexpectedly rough start when BMW CEO Harald Krueger unexpectedly collapsed during the maker’s news conference, the first of the 2015 show.

Krueger stumbled suddenly while addressing a standing-room-only crowd in the large hall BMW is using to show off an assortment of new and older products. BMW staff quickly rushed the stage and helped Krueger to his feet and off the stage.

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Moments later, a BMW official announced that the maker was canceling the news conference but would attempt to reschedule it later during the two-day Frankfurt Motor Show press preview.


Porsche on a Mission to Electrify with 600-hp Battery Sports Car

Mission E will hit 60 in just over 3 seconds and deliver 500 miles a charge.

by on Sep.14, 2015

Porsche's Mission E will make about 600 horsepower out of its twin electric motors.

If you’re image of a battery car runs along the lines of a Nissan Leaf, Toyota Prius or Chevrolet Volt, something, slow, awkward and anything but fun to drive, Porsche is about to blow your doors off.

The German maker is on a mission to redefine the battery car. Mission E, that is. Looking like it’s rolled out of a sci-fi flick, the concept car Porsche is unveiling at the Frankfurt Motor Show is meant to prove that Tesla isn’t the only automaker that can be both mean and green.

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The 600-horsepower Porsche Mission E will launch from 0 to 100 kmh, or 62.5 mph, in under 3.5 seconds, yet get more than 310 miles per charge if you’re a little more gentle on the throttle. And if you do want to see what it can deliver on the track, Porsche says you can get an 80% battery charge-up in just 15 minutes.


Audi Electrifies with e-tron SUV Concept

310-mile range and sports car performance.

by on Sep.14, 2015

The Audi e-tron Quattro concept is meant to give a "foretaste" of the production model coming.

Audi is intent on pulling the plug on Tesla, and it is showing off a new battery SUV concept that could prove faster and deliver better performance than the new Model X electric utility vehicle the California carmaker will launch in the coming months.

Technically, the Audi e-tron Quattro debuting at the Frankfurt Motor Show is a concept vehicle, but the German maker quickly noted that it is meant to serve as a “foretaste of the production version” to come by “early 2018.”

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The new model, “combines driving pleasure with great range, an expressive design and excellent comfort,” said Ulrich Hackenberg, the Audi board member in charge of technical development, during a presentation the night before the official opening of the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show.