The New Aluminium-Intensive Jaguar XE: The Most Fuel Efficient Jaguar Ever To Achieve Over 75MPG



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  • The Jaguar XE brings new levels of aluminium-intensive lightweight construction expertise to the segment
  • Projected to deliver fuel economy of over 75mpg* (less than 4 litres/100km) on EU combined cycle
  • The high strength, rigid body enables world class driving dynamics – with supple ride and precise handling
  • All-new modular architecture developed around Jaguar’s fifth-generation bonded and riveted aluminium technology
  • New aluminium alloy invented: RC5754 uses highly recycled aluminium to dramatically reduce energy consumption and lifecycle CO2
    *subject to certification

The innovative new Jaguar XE redefines the standard in its segment. Designed around Jaguar’s modular vehicle architecture, the XE is the only car in the class to use an aluminium-intensive monocoque, with lightweight aluminium accounting for 75 per cent of the structure.

This milestone in body engineering, a product of Jaguar’s world-leading expertise in high-volume production of aluminium vehicles, ensures that the Jaguar XE combines outstanding design with benchmark levels of ride and handling – it will be the true driver’s car in the segment.

Lightweight construction is a core element of Jaguar’s DNA and Jaguar is at the cutting-edge of aluminium technology in the automotive industry. The Jaguar XJ, XK and F-Type have all been developed using exceptionally stiff bonded and riveted aluminium structures: now the XE becomes the latest model to use this aerospace-inspired technology.

The weight reduction realised ensures that the XE is the most fuel-efficient Jaguar yet with fuel consumption and CO2 emissions on the NEDC combined cycle of over 75mpg and less than 100g/km respectively.

“The Jaguar XE body uses over 75% aluminium content, which far exceeds any other car in its class. This gives us a body structure with unrivalled low weight: it’s light but also immensely strong with extremely high levels of torsional stiffness. We’ve made sure our aluminium-intensive body structure exceeds all global safety standards without compromising on vehicle design or refinement.”
Dr Mark White, Jaguar’s Chief Technical Specialist; Body Complete

The Jaguar XE’s aluminium-intensive body is beautiful to look at, but the structure also delivers exceptional torsional stiffness. The light but strong architecture incorporates highly advanced suspension systems delivering unparalleled levels of ride quality, handling and steering.

The Jaguar XE is also the first car in the world make use of a new grade of high strength aluminium called RC 5754 which has been developed specifically for the XE. This new alloy features a high level of recycled material and makes a significant contribution to Jaguar’s goal of using 75 per cent recycled material by 2020.

Designed and engineered in the UK, the XE will be the first Jaguar to be manufactured at a new purpose-built production facility at the company’s Solihull plant in the West Midlands in the UK.

The world premiere of the new Jaguar XE will be held in London on September 8th.

Bold And Sophisticated Styling For Third Generation Kia Sorento

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3rd Generation Kia Sorento gaycarboys (2)3rd Generation Kia Sorento gaycarboys (1)


(SEOUL) July 29, 2014 – The all-new third generation Kia Sorento will be unveiled in Korea next month, featuring bold, swept-back exterior styling.
The new model sports a lower roofline, higher beltline, more muscular stance, rounded shoulders at the rear, and deeply sculpted body surfaces. Together with a larger, more upright ‘tiger-nose’ grille, these design changes raise the aesthetic sophistication of Kia’s best-selling SUV.
Styled at Kia’s design studios in Korea, Germany and the USA, the new Kia Sorento will be showcased in Korea at the end of August, and is due to make its world motor show premiere on Thursday 2 October at the 2014 Paris Motor Show.

Click on the following link to view a short video of the third generation Sorento being rendered at Kia’s design studio in Korea

Helpful Hints: Toll Account Rip Off and how to avoid it

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Did you know if you tag doesn’t beep, you get a notice in the mail. That’s not such a big thing, or is it? There is an administrative fee which varies between states. You can set up a temporary account but does that mean you won’t be getting half of the South American forest shoved in your mail hole? No sir it does not.Gateway bridgae brisbane gaycarboys 5

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On a recent trip to Queensland, the tag had been left behind in Sydney so I set up a temporary account Gateway bridgae brisbane gaycarboys 7which I assumed worked the same way as tags too. I thought I had been terribly clever. So chuffed was I, that I used toll roads with gay abandon. I thought I was covered, sadly no, I was in fact not covered.

Whereas tags work regardless of the company who owns the road you’re using, the temporary accounts do not. Crazy isn’t it? And If I didn’t know that I’ll bet others don’t know it either. So let’s say you drive through 5 different tolls owned by 3 different private companies, you would need 3 different temporary accounts, and they refuse to entertain an idea that you already have an account.

In my case, I dutifully set up an account each time I collected a new car, because there doesn’t seem to be a way to alter the registration. Because state governments are misusing our Australian dollar in road taxes, they need private businesses to run roads on their behalf. Such is the level of ongoing incompetence that road users are not made aware that each operator needs its own temporary account. You will get the spanking Gateway bridgae brisbane gaycarboys 2of your life if you fail to understand that which he not been explained to you. The method of cross checking permanent accounts does not apply to temporary accounts because the private businesses are as incompetent as the dopey governments who allow this robbery in the first place.

Remember, many of these private operators have gone broke because drivers object to paying to build roads, then paying again to use them just so a shareholder can buy a bottle of Grange for a politician. I don’t blame them one little bit.

The story takes a sad turn when the $4.13 fee to cross the shiny new Gateway Bridges has a $22.73 fee for the private business to process your toll, even though you think you have done the right thing. And, there is no escaping it. If you don’t pay they simply ask the courts to fine you and the toll suddenly becomes $140.

There is a dual-edged moral to this story: Governments should explain that the complex toll issues have done you like the Christmas dinner. And, the private businesses who charge us for driving on roads we paid to build need to explain that we have to bend over each time we use our own roads. If we fail to bend over we will have to pay. Normally if we bend over, it is we who are paid surely?

Beware! This system is broken, if not corrupt. It seems to me these details have purposely been withheld so innocent, unsuspecting, law abiding motorists are forced to bend over and take it up the clacker! Perhaps we should rise up!

Jaguar Special Vehicle Operations Builds F-Type Concept To Support Team Sky In Tour De France

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Carcassonne, July 21st 2014: With Richie Porte in a strong position in the current overall classification at the 2014 Tour de France for Team Sky, Jaguar has extended its support as an Innovation Partner to Team Sky by designing, engineering and building a bespoke F-TYPE Coupé high performance support vehicle, for the team to use during stage 20 of the competition. Stage 20 of the 2014 Tour de France will see riders traverse from Bergerac to Périgueux.

Development of this bespoke F-TYPE Coupé by Jaguar Land Rover Special Operations follows the successful launch of the Jaguar F-TYPE R Coupé – the most dynamically capable, performance-focused production car Jaguar has ever built, which went on sale worldwide earlier this year. This unique F-TYPE concept vehicle is based on the F-TYPE R Coupé and will be supplied with the same 404kW/680Nm 5.0-litre V8 supercharged engine.

Jaguar does not plan to place into series production any version of this unique F-TYPE Coupé. Engineers working in the new Jaguar Land Rover Special Vehicle Operations team were briefed specifically to develop one vehicle for Team Sky, and this exciting version of the F-TYPE sports car is now set to follow the Team Sky riders on Saturday 26th July.

Bespoke features include a new racking solution, which carries two of the team’s bikes. The vehicle exterior is finished in Team Sky’s famous livery, with colour ways and other Team Sky graphic design features also present inside the car. Further specifications include a separate electric supply in the boot which provides power to the radios, amplifiers, microphones, horns and televisions which support communications between Team Sky’s Race Director and the riders.

Sir Dave Brailsford, Team Principal at Team Sky, said: “Jaguar is an iconic British brand that has been an integral partner for Team Sky for four years. We have already benefited from their high performance credentials and expertise in technological capabilities and engineering innovations, particularly with the recent development of the Pinarello Dogma F8. This F-TYPE concept is a world class vehicle that will help get the best out of the team on the TT stages.”

JLR Global Brand Experience Director, Mark Cameron added: “Jaguar has supplied high performance support vehicles to Team Sky since its first season in 2010. The development of this F-TYPE Coupé is the latest example of our shared belief to push the boundaries and provide technologically innovative solutions that optimise the performance of the team, both on and off the bike.  The visual impact of the F-TYPE Coupé during Stage 20 will also of course bring added attention to Team Sky and our unique partnership.”

As an official supplier to Team Sky since its inception in 2010, Jaguar has been proud to support the team’s back-to-back victorious campaigns in 2012 and 2013, where the British engineering leaders supplied Team Sky with a fleet of all-new high performance Jaguar XF Sportbrakes.

All-New Mazda2: The Next Gen and 4th Mazda Makeover

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-Production of All-New Mazda2 begins at Hofu Plant-

HIROSHIMA, Japan—Mazda Motor Corporation today unveiled the All-New Mazda2 which will go on sale in Australia in the last quarter of 2014.

The All-New Mazda2 will be available with a range of three different engines, dependant on market, including SKYACTIV-G 1.5 and 1.3 litre petrol engines, or a SKYACTIV-D 1.5 litre diesel engine.

The All-New Mazda2 packs a whole host of improvements into its compact body and KODO design giving the car the look of a living creature and imparting a presence unrivalled in the class.

Developed around the same engineering concepts as those in larger next-generation models, new SKYACTIV engines, transmissions, body, and chassis, allow the All-New Mazda2 to provide both outstanding safety and fuel efficiency whilst enhancing the all-important fun-to-drive factor.

The All-New Mazda2 line-up offers a range of cutting-edge technologies such as MZD Connect, Mazda’s next-generation car connectivity system.

Available for the first time on Mazda’s smallest model are i-ACTIVSENSE advanced safety features that aid the driver in recognizing and responding to hazards.

Production of All-New Mazda2, which has been fully redesigned for the first time in seven years, has begun at Mazda’s Hofu Plant No. 1 in Yamaguchi, Japan.

Following the Mazda CX-5, Mazda6 and Mazda3, the All-New Mazda2 is the fourth in Mazda’s line-up of next-generation models which adopt the full range of SKYACTIV Technology and ‘KODO – Soul of Motion’ design.

With total sales of over 2.4 million units globally, the Mazda2 is one of Mazda’s core products. Starting with the launch of the original in 1996, the Mazda2 has brought new value to the subcompact segment every time it has been fully redesigned. With this fourth generation Mazda2, Mazda again offers customers around the world a new interpretation of the subcompact car.

The New AMG 4.0-Litre V8 Biturbo Engine- Powerful, Innovative and Efficient

Mercedes-AMG 4.0-Liter Biturbo-Motor (M 178); 2014Mercedes-AMG 4.0-Liter Biturbo-Motor (M 178); 2014

Mercedes-AMG 4.0-Liter Biturbo-Motor (M 178); 2014Mercedes-AMG 4.0-Liter Biturbo-Motor (M 178); 2014

Mercedes-AMG 4.0-Liter Biturbo-Motor (M 178); 2014Mercedes-AMG 4.0-Liter Biturbo-Motor (M 178); 2014

Mercedes-AMG 4.0-Liter Biturbo-Motor (M 178); 2014Mercedes-AMG 4.0-Liter Biturbo-Motor (M 178); 2014



Affalterbach.  Mercedes-AMG presents a new technological masterpiece: the AMG 4.0-litre V8 biturbo engine is a new development at the sporting heart of the new Mercedes-AMG GT car. This innovative eight-cylinder unit stands out for its sublime power delivery, the purposeful lightweight construction, as well as its high efficiency and environmental compatibility. With peak power of up to 375 kW (510 hp) and maximum torque of up to 650 Nm the new AMG V8 delivers motorsport-inspired performance. The new sports car engine follows in an impressive V8 tradition that started in 1967 with the M100 in the legendary 300 SEL 6.8 AMG racing car and continues with trendsetting features of the future.

Powerful V8 engines have long been a core competence at AMG, the performance brand from Mercedes-Benz. Innovative and exciting high-performance engines come out of the location in Affalterbach. On this occasion, Mercedes-AMG GmbH is entirely responsible for both development and production.
Tobias Moers, Chairman of the Board of Management of Mercedes-AMG GmbH: “V8 engines are an integral part of the AMG philosophy and the brand’s commitment to ‘Driving Performance’. The V8 biturbo engine for our new GT is going to delight our customers!”
Christian Enderle, Head of Engine and Powertrain Development at Mercedes-AMG: “The new AMG 4.0-litre V8 biturbo sees us presenting an exciting and powerful sports car engine which, thanks to a number of measures, also represents the next step in efficiency.”

First sports car engine with ‘hot inside V’ and dry sump lubrication

The new AMG V8 engine has two turbochargers which are not mounted on the outside of the cylinder banks but rather inside the V configuration – experts call it a ‘hot inside V’. The benefits are a compact engine design, an optimum response and low exhaust gas emissions. Dry sump lubrication allows the engine to be installed lower, which moves the centre of gravity closer to the road and forms the basis for high lateral acceleration. The M178 (in-house designation) from AMG is thus the world’s first sports car engine with hot inside V and dry sump lubrication. With a dry weight of 209 kg the new AMG V8 is also the lightest engine in its competitive segment.

The new AMG M178 V8 engine at a glance:

Cylinder arrangement


Cylinder angle


Valves per cylinder



3982 cc

Bore x stroke

83.0 x 92.0 mm

Cylinder spacing

90 mm

Compression ratio

10.5 : 1


375 kW (510 hp)
at 6250 rpm

Output per litre

94.2 kW/litre
128 hp/litre

Max. torque

650 Nm
at 1750 – 4750 rpm

Torque per litre

163.2 Nm/litre

Maximum engine speed

7200 rpm

Maximum charge pressure

1.2 bar

Peak pressure

130 bar

Engine weight (dry)

209 kg

Emissions standard

Euro 6

Superior power delivery and motorsport-inspired performance

As the latest member of the Mercedes-Benz BlueDIRECT engine family, the AMG M178 stands out for its superior power delivery and motorsport-inspired performance. It boasts an emotive and unmistakable AMG V8 engine sound, along with an immediate response and high pulling power. The torque curve is synonymous with good driveability: the peak of 650 Nm is available in the broad range from 1750 to 4750 rpm.
With a displacement of 3982 cc, in terms of technology the V8 is closely related to the AMG 2.0-litre turbo engine in the A 45 AMG, CLA 45 AMG and GLA 45 AMG, which is currently the most powerful, series-production four-cylinder engine in the world. Both AMG engines have the same bore/stroke ratio, guaranteeing high revving ability. Mixture formation comes courtesy of third-generation direct petrol injection with piezo injectors. The highly efficient and economical AMG 4.0-litre, V8 biturbo engine meets the Euro 6 emissions standard and the maximum particulate emissions level that takes effect in 2016.

Cylinder bore liners featuring NANOSLIDE® technology

The aluminium crankcase is produced using sand casting technology and features a closed deck design. This ensures extreme strength whilst keeping the weight as low as possible, and enables high injection pressures of up to 130 bar. The cylinder bore surfaces feature NANOSLIDE® technology which makes them twice as hard as conventional cast-iron linings.

NANOSLIDE® was developed by Daimler starting in the year 2000 and has so far been used in over 200,000 engines since 2006. The first unit with NANOSLIDE® technology was likewise an AMG V8: the extremely successful predecessor to the new AMG 4.0-litre biturbo. The application scope for this multi-award-winning technology has been continually widened. Since the start of the 2014 race season it is also being deployed in the new Mercedes F1 V6 turbo engine.

‘Spectacle honing’ is another measure to reduce friction and therefore consumption: in this complex process, the cylinder liners receive their mechanical surface treatment when already bolted in place.

A jig resembling spectacles is bolted to the crankcase in place of the cylinder head mounted later. Any cylinder warpage that might occur during final assembly is therefore taken into account or eliminated as the cylinder liners are honed. This has advantages in terms of both durability and oil consumption. The new AMG V8 has forged aluminium pistons featuring a lightweight design and high strength. A low-friction piston ring package reduces fuel and oil consumption.

Dry sump lubrication for high lateral acceleration

Thanks to the use of dry sump lubrication, a conventional oil pan is redundant. Already installed low down, the engine could thus be dropped by a further 55 millimetres. This lowers the vehicle’s centre of gravity, which is ideal for a sports car with extremely high lateral dynamics. In addition to improved agility, dry sump lubrication ensures direct oil extraction from the crankcases for optimal engine lubrication, even at high speeds on bends.

In the M178, dry sump lubrication deploys a suction pump, a pressure pump and an external oil tank with a capacity of 12 litres. The system circulates nine litres of engine oil in total. The oil suction pump extracts oil directly from the crankcases, cylinder heads and valve body assembly and delivers it to the external oil tank at a pump output of up to 250 litres per minute. Lubricant remains there for just five seconds before being pumped back around the high-performance engine. Efficient engine oil suction improves engine efficiency further. On-demand control of the pressure oil pump takes into account the engine rpm, temperature and load characteristics stored by the control unit. Made of plastic, the oil pan bottom section and oil tank are proof of a commitment to lightweight construction.

Cylinder heads with zirconium alloy

The cylinder heads in the AMG 4.0-litre, V8 biturbo engine are made of a zirconium alloy for maximum temperature resistance and thermal conductivity. Four overhead camshafts control a total of 32 valves. Camshaft adjustment on the inlet and outlet side enables an excellent response and optimises the gas cycle for each operating point. Optimised valve springs and the low-friction valve gear with cam followers deliver further fuel savings.

Direct injection with spray-guided combustion

A combination of biturbocharging and direct petrol injection with spray-guided combustion increases thermodynamic efficiency, thereby reducing fuel consumption and exhaust gas emissions.

articularly fast and precise piezo injectors spray the fuel at high pressure into eight combustion chambers. Multiple injection occurs on-demand, ensuring a homogeneous fuel/air mixture. The delivery of fuel is electronically controlled and fully variable for a fuel pressure between 100 and 200 bar.

Biturbocharging with ‘hot inside V’

Unlike the previously conventional approach, both exhaust gas turbochargers in the new M178 are located inside the ‘hot inside V’ configuration rather than on the outside of the cylinder banks. The advantages of this layout are that the V8 engine is considerably more compact, which enables optimum weight distribution between the front and rear axle, as well as the low installation position. The ‘hot inside V’ also optimises the supply of fresh air to both exhaust gas turbochargers. Electronically controlled blow-off valves ensure a very immediate and direct response. The maximum charge pressure is 1.2 bar; the turbochargers have a maximum speed of 186,000 revolutions per minute. For combustion purposes, 2.3 times more oxygen atoms are pressed into the turbocharged engine as would be the case in a naturally aspirated engine. The two firewall catalytic converters in thin-walled ceramic material positioned down from the exhaust gas turbochargers respond very quickly due to their close-coupled configuration. In conjunction with two metal, underfloor catalytic converters, the M178 delivers effective emission control.

Sports exhaust system with variable exhaust flaps

Excitement, emotive appeal and recognition value: at Mercedes-AMG engine sound is an important target during development. The new GT has a sports exhaust system with fully variable exhaust flaps. This gives the driver the ability to vary the engine sound: depending on the selected mode they may experience the new AMG V8 with a focus on comfort and relaxed, long-distance journeys or with a more emotive, motorsport-inspired touch. The M178 has its own tonal characteristics which denote the GT’s membership of the AMG family but that also distinguish it from all other high-performance cars.

There is an exhaust flap on either side of the rear silencer which is actuated variably on a logic-controlled basis depending on the transmission mode, driver’s power requirement and the engine speed. At low loads and engine rpm the flaps remain closed. This causes the exhaust gases to cover a longer distance and flow through an additional damping element so that the engine sound is pleasantly subdued and irritating frequencies are effectively suppressed. When the driver accelerates, the flaps progressively open so that although some of the exhaust gases cover the longer, acoustically dampened distance, most travel the shorter distance. Under full load at higher engine speeds, both flaps are fully opened, thus allowing the occupants to enjoy the powerful sound typical of an AMG V8. In short, they are left in no doubt as to the performance potential of the 375 kW (510 hp) eight-cylinder biturbo engine.

Efficient cooling of charge air, water and engine oil

For optimum power output even when outside temperatures are high, Mercedes-AMG uses indirect air/water intercooling. The charge air cooler has a separate, low-temperature water circuit. Due to the optimised throughflow profile for the intercooler, the maximum intake air temperature is 180 degrees Celsius. The low-temperature cooler with its water circuit ensures that the intake air compressed by the turbochargers cools down effectively before it enters the combustion chambers, and maintains a consistently low intake temperature even under full load. A large radiator at the car’s front end ensures controlled cooling of the water circulating in the low-temperature circuit. Extremely short charge-air ducting makes for optimum responsiveness.

The engine coolant is cooled using the particularly efficient cross-flow principle and there is a three-phase thermostat to warm coolant faster. Because the water pump is driven by a timing chain rather than the usual poly-V-belt, a simplified belt drive system is used with less clamping force. The advantages: less loss of drive power. With a rated flow of 420 litres, the water pump conveys the equivalent of more than two full bathtubs per minute.

An external engine oil cooler in the front apron of the Mercedes-AMG GT helps with heat management for the V8 engine. A two-stage, controlled oil pump circulates the engine oil: it varies the flow rate depending on load and engine speed requirement, thereby benefiting fuel economy. At high engine speeds more than 1.0 litre of engine oil per second flows through the oil lines and ducts. To save on weight numerous oil and water lines are made of aluminium.

Sophisticated solutions are also deployed on the engine’s periphery:

  • Separate cooling-air flow for the exhaust gas turbochargers under high thermal load
  • Active engine mounts for excellent lateral dynamics with no loss of comfort
  • Auxiliary units efficiently powered by two short, low-friction belts with four grooves. Intelligent positioning of auxiliary units virtually neutralises belt forces on the crankshaft.
  • Two-mass flywheel with centrifugal pendulum prevents torsional vibration on the drive line for a smooth ride.
  • ECO start/stop function and alternator management to save fuel.

High-tech test benches for engines with over 470 kW

There are nine high-tech test stations in Affalterbach on which AMG engines with an output exceeding 470 kW and more than 1000 Nm undergo dynamic testing. These test facilities are able to simulate a very wide range of road and environmental conditions to reproduce any conceivable type of operation. Cold or hot starting, mountain passes, stop-and-go traffic or fast laps on the North Loop of the Nürburgring – the engines are required to give their utmost. Even different intake air temperatures and densities can be computer controlled.

Function and endurance benchtesting for the highest quality

The goal of the detailed bench tests is to verify the performance of all engine components, including the peripheral units. All measurement data for the engines examined is systematically compared and evaluated using reproducible test methods. The functional tests are accompanied by endurance testing. To ensure the very highest quality standards over their entire operating life, new AMG engines are required to undergo several thousand hours of endurance testing.

Extensive trials in every climatic zone on earth

Simultaneously the first test engines undergo intensive testing in practical trials. The standardised test programme at Mercedes-AMG includes all climatic zones and route profiles from the icy cold of northern Sweden to the merciless heat of Death Valley (USA), from fast laps on the North Loop of the Nürburgring and high-speed circuits in Nardo (Italy) and Papenburg to stop-and-go city traffic during rush hour. This programme makes the very highest demands on the day-to-day practicality, reliability and long-term durability of new generations of engine.

A tradition of hand-built excellence: “one man, one engine”

The AMG 4.0-litre, V8 biturbo engine is being made in Affalterbach according to the “one man, one engine” principle. In the AMG engine shop highly qualified fitters assemble the high-performance engines by hand according to the strictest quality standards. The fitter’s signature on the AMG engine plate attests to this exclusive type of engine production and indicates maximum quality and technology transfer from motorsport – from Formula 1 and the DTM to customer sport activities in the SLS AMG GT3.

Long tradition of powerful AMG V8 engines

Powerful eight-cylinder engines are an inseparable part of Mercedes-AMG’s history. Established in 1967, the company caused a stir with the 300 SEL 6.8 AMG which succeeded in taking second place at the 24-hour race in Spa-Francorchamps (Belgium) in 1971 for a class victory. The AMG racing saloon was technically based on the Mercedes-Benz 300 SEL 6.3 with the M100 V8 engine. With an engine output of 184 kW (250 hp) at 4000 rpm and a top speed of 220 km/h, this luxury saloon was Germany’s fastest regular production car at the time. Classic tuning as well as an enlarged displacement from 6330 to 6835 cc resulted in an increase in output to 315 kW (428 hp) at 5500 rpm and in torque from 500 to 608 Nm.

Another important engine in the AMG story was the M117, its first eight-cylinder unit with a four-valve-per-cylinder design. With a displacement of 5.6 litres, 265 kW (360 hp) and 510 Nm of torque, this V8 accelerated the 300 CE 5.6 AMG to a top speed of 303 km/h. In 1987 this made the coupé the fastest German car in series production, and American AMG fans reverently christened it “The Hammer”.

The supercharged AMG 5.5-litre V8 of 2001 is another milestone in the history of AMG engine development: the M113 K delivered up to 428 kW (582 hp) and 800 Nm of torque. The supercharged AMG 5.5-litre V8 of the SLR McLaren dating from 2003 was even more powerful – the M155 generated up to 478 kW (650 hp) and 820 Nm.

2005 saw the début of the naturally aspirated, high-revving AMG 6.3-litre V8 engine known as the M156, which developed up to 386 kW (525 hp) and 630 Nm depending on the model.

Exclusively reserved for the SLS AMG, the likewise 6.3-litre M159 had a maximum output of 420 kW (571 hp) and maximum torque of 650 Nm. In the SLS AMG Coupé Black Series the M159 actually attained 464 kW (631 hp).

The AMG 5.5-litre V8 biturbo M157 engine delivers between 386 kW (525 hp) and 430 kW (585 hp) depending on the model, and a maximum torque of between 700 and 900 Nm. M157 is regarded as the most efficient engine in its output and displacement class.

With a high specific output of 128 hp/litre and consumption of considerably less than 10 litres/100 km (NEDC combined), the AMG 4.0-litre V8 biturbo engine leads the way in the long tradition of powerful V8 engines from Mercedes-AMG.


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Last ever Falcon Debuts with High-Performance XR8 Model Showcasing Ford’s Global Design Language

Banner 2014 Ford Falcon XR8 gaycarboys

  • Ford reveals the new Falcon XR8, designed to be the best Falcon ever with improved design, technology and performance
  • Falcon XR8 showcases Ford’s global design DNA with signature trapezoidal grille, chiseled headlights with daytime running lamps and smoother wrap-around tail-lamps
  • Signature bonnet power dome has been enhanced
  • Falcon XR6 and XR8 carry distinctive XR head light design cues in the headlights

MELBOURNE, 25 Jul., 2014 – Ford revealed today the new Falcon XR8 performance sedan that blends the car’s iconic history with Ford’s new global design DNA to achieve the development team’s goal of creating the best Falcon ever.

Also joining the new XR8 performance model is the first official image of the refreshed XR6 sedan.

2014 Ford Falcon XR6

The Falcon XR6 and XR8 showcase the Australian design team’s interpretation of Ford’s global design DNA with a signature trapezoidal grille, chiseled head lamp treatment and smoother, wrap-around tail-lamps with LED technology. These features accentuate the high levels of design refinement that will appear across the refreshed Falcon range.

As a mark of distinction among the sporty XR series, the XR8 features strong exterior graphics with a distinct sporty front end treatment, as well as signature bonnet power dome that has been enhanced for the 2014 Falcon XR8. This is complemented by a specific exhaust system tuned for the sporty V8 exhaust note.

2014 Ford Falcon XR8

The Exterior Design Manager for the new Falcon, Nima Nourian, said the Australian design team drew on all the visual strength of the existing XR series, which provided a perfect canvas to develop the 2014 Falcon XR series.

“The challenge was delivering a powerful, yet premium look for the 2014 car,” Nourian said. “I’m proud of the fact that the new Falcon XR builds on an already distinctive design and yet delivers a whole new personality.

“The Falcon is acknowledged as being one of the most iconic Australian sedans available but the 2014 Falcon pushes this theme further forward. Our customers will easily identify the new Falcon by its premium look.”

On the sports XR models, the head lamp treatment is a key differentiator, which in past XR models had featured a distinctive sporty quad-head lamp design.

There XR’s slim head lamps provide a high-end technical look and feature ‘hockey stick’-style LED daytime running lamps that mimic the “double drop” headlight treatment of past XRs. The lens reflectors also get distinctive “XR” shields inset into the overall head lamp design. There are also unique fog lamp bezels.

“With the XR6 and XR8 the front end is not only sporty but has a premium look, which will also be apparent across the Falcon range,” Nourian said.

“We did that by implementing the signature Ford trapezoidal grille shape high on the front end to provide a more purposeful look which is a signature look on most of our vehicles globally.

“This new layout is further enhanced by the slim head-lamps flanking either side of the grille. The headlamps have distinct technical graphics and detailing inside as well as clever use of materials and finishes.

“On the XR series, we wanted a three-dimensional honey-comb grille mesh, which visually demonstrates the sporty nature of the car. The power dome on the XR8 also further enhances this look. The power dome expresses the car’s intention and for our XR8 customers, will be an instantly recognisable difference.”

The 2014 Falcon XR8 power dome now extends up to the windscreen cowl to deliver a stronger look. “This look is also found on the Mustang that will arrive next year so it’s perfectly in keeping with Ford’s V8 performance vehicles,” Nourian said.

The strong family resemblance not only links Falcon to the new Mustang but highlights DNA shared with the new Mondeo which joins the line-up in Australia next year.

On the rear, the jeweled split tail-lamps accentuate the car’s wide, purposeful stance and smooth exterior lines. The new tail -lamps use LED technology while the new sculpted boot lid has an integrated rear spoiler on XR models. A bespoke lower diffuser on the XR8 houses the round quad exhaust tips and further emphasizes the performance of the XR8 from the rear view.

“For customers, the exterior of the 2014 Falcon – particularly the XR models – is distinctive and the rear of the car takes on a wider stance. It will stand out from the crowd,” Nourian said.

Ford President and CEO, Bob Graziano, said the XR8 badge was a welcomed return to the Falcon line-up. “We’re very excited by the return of the XR8, as this badge has not been seen on a Falcon since 2010,” he said. “Our enthusiasts have been asking for it so we’ve purposely revealed the Falcon XR6 and XR8 first.”

With the return of the V8 into the Falcon portfolio, Graziano said Falcon will be the only Australian-made large sedan available that has the choice of three engines, the acclaimed EcoBoost four, in-line six or V8 petrol engines.

“Four, six, or eight; our customers will have more choice,” Graziano said. “To enhance the choice too, our six cylinder customers will also be able to choose between the locally developed EcoLPi engine or Turbo six cylinder, as well as the naturally aspirated six.”

“Quite simply, we think this is the best Falcon ever. I just couldn’t be more pleased with what the talented local team’s been able to accomplish, I’m really proud of them,” Graziano said.

“When you look at cars like the new Falcon, it’s easy to understand why we are now leading global projects such as the new Everest which is designed and engineered in Australia for the world.”

Pricing, features and specifications of the 2014 Falcon will be revealed closer to launch. The Falcon range and ute go on sale in the fourth quarter of this year.

Eyjafjallajökull: Toyota HiLux did it, now try saying it

Toyota HiLux drives to the heart of Iceland’s Eyjafjallajökull volcano

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2011 Toyota HiLux Turbo Diesel engine

2011 Toyota HiLux 4x4 Double Cab Turbo Diesel: SR5 (front), SR (right) and WorkMate (left).2011 Toyota HiLux SR5 Double Cab 4x4 Turbo Diesel2011 Toyota HiLux SR5 Double Cab 4x4 Turbo Diesel

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2011 Toyota HiLux SR5 Double Cab 4x4 Turbo Diesel

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Toyota HiLux SR5: Leather and Shirtless Hunks Don’t Mix

Yes Yes Yes oh Yes: sexy, butch, versatile, well made, rugged, good reputation

Oh dear me no: pricey, noisy diesel, harsh ride, vague steering, limited rear legroom

Sexy, Muscular, Good-looking, Desirable, are all words I did not hear said about me during my week in the HiLux but the Ute itself got many kind comments.

When I think of HiLuxes, I think of the musky scent of sweaty “P” plated tradies with the merest hint of chest 2011 Toyota HiLux 4x4 automatic transmissionhair peaking from an open flannelette shirt. I also think of loud music, beer and bad manners but there are always swings and roundabouts.. There is something sexy about a workman’s ute that you can’t quite put your finger on, but wish you could. Maybe it is the way it looks, or sounds, either way it evokes a feeling. They are honest and hardworking.

The HiLux has been round for long enough that many are now slightly down-at-heel farm hacks and fisherman’s totes. Their prime is well and truly past, and they smell a little funky. It’s hard to believe they were once shiny and new.

The new HiLux is an evolution of that story. Strictly speaking it is a pick-up not a ute, but for our purposes Ute will do, this is Australia after all. I for one take great pleasure in thinking of “tradies” and “pick-up”, in the same sentence. I frequently need a short private moment after that notion has entered my thoughts, but I digress.

Australia's best-selling 4WD: Toyota's HiLux. (Toyota HiLux SR5 4x4 turbo-diesel shown)The HiLux is rugged and handsome and its interior feels sturdy and well made. There is a vague similarity with many other pick-up types, no matter who made them. After all you can’t go far wrong with a double cab and Ute back. All you need is an engine that doesn’t make a complete hack humping gear around a building site, a couple of chairs, and a nice interior with air conditioning. The top draw HiLux SR5 has either a 3.0L diesel or a 4.0 L petrol engine. The diesel has an adequate 126kw (@3600rpm)/343Nm (@1400rpm) but it won’t set the world on fire. The petrol has 175kw (@5300rpm)/376Nm (@3800rpm) and both need your stiletto mashed hard into the Axminster. Neither feel capable of moving with the tray full tool thingummies especially while towing a trailer, but, they do, and they do it well.

I mention this quite deliberately, because unladen, the diesel feels decidedly lack-lustre and is unbelievably noisy. Although it’s stupidly economical for a vehicle this size, I found myself not as in love as I thought I would be, given the whole tradie slant. There is only so far the musky-sweat fantasy will carry you.

The exterior is gorgeous. The side steps look great and they are handy for the vertically challenged amongst us. The stainless roll bars are only attached to the tray, so are purely decorative as they are on most utes. This makes no sense at all and would be no help in a rollover. You wouldn’t want to tie anything heavy to them either for fear of the whole thing coming away mid journey. Generally however, the appearance gets double snaps.

Inside, the cabin is understated and comfy. There are queens among us who will be particularly 2011 Toyota HiLux SR5 4x4 manual interiorappreciative of the easy-wipe leather interior. They will like being able to give untimely spills a quick whisk over while keeping that nice leather smell as new. They are often found nose down giving it a really thorough inspection. Their enthusiasm and diligence is indeed laudable. Needless to say a genuine tradie probably wouldn’t be going for the leather option, even though at $60,000 the SR5 just sneaks in under the luxury car tax thresh hold.

I have a theory: People should only be able to claim a car as a business expense and tax deduction if it is actually used for business. Those vehicles should be station wagons, utes, pick-ups, and vans under $60,000. Special dispensation may be sought if the business relates to 4WD’s such as off-roading tours and so forth. If people want luxury cars, they can pay for them themselves. If they don’t use them for business, why should it be a tax deduction? I’ve finished ranting now.

The dash is clearly laid out but the HiLux has an odd driving position. An average size driver needs to lean2011 Toyota HiLux SR5 4x4 manual interior forward to reach dash mounted controls. With the seat set at a comfy reach to the pedals, the steering wheel won’t adjust high enough and has no adjustment for reach making it too low and too far away. It just isn’t quite right.

The Audio system is standard Toyota so has the ubiquitous Satnav and Bluetooth on the top model. It’s easy to use and sounds great, but I might expect more in a 60K car, albeit one that can tow a moon.

I like the hidey numerous holes, including under the back seats which are set slightly higher than the front. Toyota HiLux ute SR5 gaycarboys (4)Herein lies another problem. Should you find yourself carting a bevy of safety-booted lads in the back for whatever reason, they will find they have no legroom. With the front seat set for me the rear legroom wasn’t overly generous, and was made worse by the height of the space between the front seats and the floor. Steel-capped boots won’t fit under the front seats, so the back seat boys have no room to move their feet. That is stupid in a tradies Ute which could logically expect blokes with work-boots on board.

In the cargo hold, the tray needs a liner. You don’t want things rolling around in the back banging into things, do we? Speaking of banging, boys that bang nails in all week don’t want to bang things in on the weekend. Weekends are meant for play and the HiLux would be fabulous for campers. Your camping stuff would be tied into the tray with rope fixed with big butch knots. The only thing they’d be banging in would be tent pegs, probably.


I wouldn’t want to drive the HiLux on a long trip. With the big off-road tyres the make the steering feel a little vague, and the wheel doesn’t adjust to where I’d feel comfortable. The ride is a bit harsh without a load in the back, and the rear leg room is far too limited, especially since you can’t get boots under the seat in front. The HiLux does what it does well, but the opposition like Amorok and Ranger are as good as the HiLux, and for similar trim levels are a bit cheaper.

Would I buy one? Sure, why not if I had a need for a tool carrier. I’d also have a look the Amorok and the Ranger.

Price: From $32,240 to $59,405 (*prices for Cab Chassis models not included **inc NSW onroads)

Engine (SR5 double cab diesel tested): 3.0L turbo diesel, 4cyl DOHC, 126KW/343Nm

Renault Renews The Mégane Hatch And Wagon Range

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Renault has today launched the renewed Megane hatch and wagon range in Australia.  Renault’s striking New Brand Identity – designed by Senior Vice President of Corporate Design, Laurens van den Acker – has now been rolled out across the entire Megane range to deliver a revitalised and contemporary character to Renault’s best-selling model in Australia.

First debuted on the award-winning Renault Clio, Renault’s new brand identity has been rolling out across the Renault range to ensure a unified and striking corporate design language.  The road presence of the Megane range is enhanced by the prominent and upright Renault diamond on a black background – a hallmark of Laurens van den Acker’s new design language.

The renewal of the Megane range heralds the introduction of new technology to the range – most notably Mégane Hatch Authentique gaycarboysthe new TCe 130 turbocharged petrol engine coupled with 6-speed Efficient Dual Clutch (EDC) automatic transmission – the first vehicle to receive this combination.  This engine debuted in the Megane range in late 2013 with a 6-speed manual transmission only and producing 97 kW and 205 Nm it was well received by customers looking for sprightly performance and efficiency.  With a combined cycle performance of just 5.6 litres per 100km and CO2 emissions of 129g when coupled with the EDC transmission this engine reduces fuel consumption 28% over the outgoing petrol engine.  Undoubtedly the new TCe 130 petrol engine is set to become the best-seller of the Megane range.

In September 2012 Renault Australia introduced the diesel engine to the Megane hatch range, which proved an instant success with customers and immediately accounted for one third of Megane sales.  Following this success the diesel engine was added to the Megane line-up in the GT-Line specifications of both the Megane hatch and wagon.  Today the Megane diesel story continues with the introduction of two entry-level specifications – Megane Hatch Authentique with an RRP of $25,990 and Megane Wagon Dynamique with an RRP of $29,490.  The dCi 110 engine fitted in the Megane diesel variants has a fuel consumption figure of just 4.5-litres per 100km on the combined cycle – making it one of the most fuel-efficient diesel vehicles in its class.  This engine produces 240 Nm at just 1,750 rpm ensuring a sprightly and enjoyable driving experience at all times.

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The technology story continues with the new Megane range with the introduction of Renault’s innovative R-Link entertainment system.  Available on various specifications across the range, R-Link includes a large seven-inch (18 cm) touchscreen display, intuitive voice commands and a home page that can be personalised by the user for safe, simple access to key functions, without the driver having to take his or her eyes off the road.  In addition the menu includes six icons, which provide access to the six main functions: Navigation, Multimedia, Phone, Vehicle, Services and Applications, and System.

In July 2013, Renault Australia introduced the limited edition Megane GT220 Sport Wagon to bridge the gap Mégane Wagon GT-Line Premium Diesel gaycarboysbetween Renault’s central Megane range and the iconic Renault Sport vehicles.  Intense global demand for this vehicle and for a hatch variant has resulted in an exciting new addition to the Renault Megane range – the new Megane GT220 Hatch and the permanent inclusion of the Megane GT220 Sport Wagon to the Megane wagon line-up.  As with the Megane GT220 Sport Wagon, the Megane GT220 Hatch features the 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine from the Megane R.S. range.  This has an output of 220 hp (or 162 kW) and 340 Nm and thanks to the addition of Stop&Start technology, has a combined cycle fuel consumption of just 7.3-litres per 100km.  The Megane GT220 Hatch and Wagon both feature a 0-100km time of 7.6 seconds and a top speed of 240 km/h. 

Commenting on the launch of the renewed Megane range Justin Hocevar, Managing Director of Renault Australia, said: “The Megane nameplate is the best known and highest selling Renault nameplate in Australia and it is exciting to introduce this renewal of the range.  We have already seen a very positive reaction by Renault customers to Laurens van den Acker’s design language with the award-winning Clio and we are confident customers will embrace the renewed Megane range.

“One of the highlights of the renewed Megane range is the introduction of the new TCe 130 petrol engine from Renault’s Energy Engine range.  This new engine delivers in all respects – from sprightly performance to impressive fuel economy and it a genuinely enjoyable drive experience.  I am confident that this engine will become a welcome addition to the Megane range and anticipate the TCe 130 representing two thirds of all Megane sales.

“Another exciting addition to the Megane range is the permanent introduction of the GT220 specification in both the Sport Wagon and Hatch variant.  We had a very positive customer reaction to the limited edition Mégane Hatch GT- Line Petrol  gaycarboysMegane GT220 Sport Wagon when we launched in 2013.  There were several customers who had previously considered a Megane RS265 but needed the practicality of a 5-door vehicle and a more family-oriented suspension set-up.  Along with several other markets we fed this strong customer acceptance back to the team at Renault Sport Technologies and we are thrilled that they were able to respond to this demand and introduce both a hatch variant of the GT220 and ensure that this specification is a permanent inclusion in the Renault Megane range.  The GT220 provides an important bridge between the central Megane range and the hard-core, hero Megane RS range, ensuring we have a vehicle to meet all customer needs.

“Megane represented approximately 27% of total Renault sales in 2013 and I am confident that the popularity of the Megane nameplate will continue to grow and be spearheaded by the renewed range.

“So far this year Renault sales have grown by 53% over the same period last year and the new Megane range will help to ensure our rate of growth continues strongly throughout the remainder of 2014,” Mr Hocevar said.

All variants of the Megane Hatch and Wagon have a 5 year/unlimited kilometre warranty and 5 years’ roadside assist.  All vehicles in the Megane range have 1 year servicing intervals and are covered by Renault’s Capped Price servicing program.  The first three services are capped at just $299 per service.

The renewed Megane hatch and wagon ranges go on sale nationally on Monday 27th July, 2014. 

Holden Cruze Stars In Stunning Tasmanian New Short Film

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The Holden Cruze Z-Series has starred in a new short film shot in beautiful Tasmania by award winning photographer, Nathan Kaso and award winning writer and director, Timothy Melville.

The talented duo set out from Holden’s Port Melbourne headquarters with a pair of Red Hot Cruze Z-Series Cruze Tasmania gaycarboys holden (1)to explore the island state and its stunning landscape for a two week period of filming. 

The excursion put the new Cruze Z-Series through its paces on various road surfaces, from lake shores to mountain summits, with the car playing the lead role in the film. 

The short film features the new Cruze Z-Series exploring Tasmania using unique time-lapse footage similar to that for which Kaso received his previous accolades, Miniature Melbourne. 

After two weeks of intense filming, both Kaso and Melville were pleased with the resulting footage in which the Cruze Z-Series performs exceptionally.

“We wanted to make something unique that would appeal to a wide audience.” Kaso said.

“Incorporating cars into the time-lapse process was an exciting challenge and something that has not Cruze Tasmania gaycarboys holden (2)been attempted before. 

“It was an ambitious project to undertake, but we were really fortunate with the conditions and came away with some beautiful footage.”

Holden’s Director of Marketing Bill Mott added “This sort of project is exciting for Holden.  We don’t get the opportunity to showcase a car in this way too often and I think the Cruze really shines throughout the film”

“To be able to perform so well on challenging surfaces and conditions is testament to the quality and performance that the car provides.”

The film is available to view on the Holden YouTube channel and Facebook page.  To follow Cruze and stay up to date with Holden news, connect with Holden: