AUDI Q2: NEAT, PETITE AND SASSY

all-new Audi Q2 gaycarboys (4)

all-new Audi Q2 gaycarboys (2)all-new Audi Q2 gaycarboys (3)

all-new Audi Q2 gaycarboys (5)Audi Q2

Audi’s Q2 SUV is set to become the big ticket summer item when it goes on sale in February.

IT’S ALMOST HERE, the cool car for a hot summer and a warm autumn, the sexy thang from Audi that will get your bits wet and make you smile.

“It” is the Q2 (or should that be Q-tee?) and rather than actually being here it is more like “almost here” if you accept that “almost” means sometime next February.

Regardless of the timing it will be well worth the wait because this sub-compact SUV really is Audi’s coolest car of the last five years, cooler than the R8 and TT sportsters and way to good-looking.

Put another way, if this car was your boyfriend you wouldn’t let it go out by itself at night.

Sadly, Audi would only let me look at the car because (a) it is the only one in the country and (b) it is left-hand-drive and (c) because I’d already sucked-down a few Little Creatures while I was waiting my turn to look.

But it is gorgeous and so easy on the eye with lines that are a sweet mix of sharp angles and coupe styling highlighted with delicately sculpted scallop lines on the shoulders from the windscreen to the rear pillar.

It has some muscle in its looks, too, with a wheel at each corner giving it an air of bulldog tenacity blending with that beautifully proportioned superstructure atop it. And, dammit, everything fits perfectly with everything else.

The wheelbase is right, the nose-to-cabin proportions are right, sill to shoulder and shoulder to roof dimensions are spot-on and even the wide rear pillar and slightly sloping semi-coupe roofline looks the goods.

Inside? It looks a little bit “Audi-familiar” but is different at the same time and while it has enough standard equipment to keep even fussy buyers happy it can be given the full tart with options that include Audi’s wonderful Virtual Cockpit – which turns the main instrument panel into a huge satellite navigation screen, a Head-Up Display and a panoramic sunroof.

And let’s not forget the interior lighting pack giving drivers a choice of 10 trim lighting colours highlighting dash, doors and centre console. My favourite is the toxic green.

Q2 inherits well, grabbing a lot of the cool features from big brother Q7 and the uber sexy TT coupe for its options list.

Which means it will be possible to have Q2 with a full infotainment system, driver assist systems such as Side Assist (it warns against opening doors if something is approaching from behind), Lane Assist (to guide the car back into its lane should it start to wander), radar-guided cruise control with stop and go feature and pedestrian protection (autonomous braking) that works at up to 85km/h.

So what will buyers get when they don’t want to pay extra to sex-up their Q-tee?

The Australian range will start with two variants, a front-wheel-drive model powered by a 110 kilowatt, 1.4-litre turbocharged petrol engine and an all-wheel-drive ‘quattro’ model using a 2.0-litre turbo-diesel for propulsion.

A third variant, a quattro powered by a 2.0-litre petrol engine will join the model mix around the middle of 2017. No manual gearbox though because all Aussie Q2s will be automatic.

And while Audi is yet to make public Q2’s final detail it is known the small SUV will get a big equipment list so expect it to debut with 17-inch alloy wheels, the company’s MMI navigation unit, smartphone interface and reversing camera all standard.

To give the car even more appeal to a distinctly different demographic Audi will, for the first time, let buyers do a bit of customisation with the colour palette. The broad rear pillars, for example, can be ordered in silver, white or two shades of grey, ditto the side skirts, wheel arch mouldings and bumper inserts.

The price will be right, too and with a $41,100 (plus on-roads) start up this car will have more chance of success than President Malcolm’s gay marriage plebiscite.

The really good thing about the new Q2? That superbly sexy styling is likely to set Audi’s SUV design trend for the next generation and that is sure to get a big “Amen!” from anyone who has tried to understand the styling of the Q3 model.

Seriously, February cannot get here soon enough.

British Actor Nicholas Hoult Takes On Unique Driving Challenge In New Jaguar XF All-wheel Drive

 

  • Star of Mad Max, Fury Road and X-Men is the latest contender to take on Jaguar’s ‘Smart Cone’ driving challenge
  • New Jaguar XF AWD put through its paces on a unique low-grip course

Monday 26 September, 2016: British actor Nicholas Hoult, known for his roles in blockbuster films including Mad Max and the X-Men series, has become the second Jaguar ambassador to tackle the ‘Smart Cone challenge’ after F1 driver Romain Grosjean set the score to beat earlier this year.

It comes as Nicholas’ brand new film Collide, which also features Felicity Jones, Anthony Hopkins and Ben Kingsley, hits cinemas across Europe. The film features Nicholas behind the wheel of a Jaguar XF, as well as the Jaguar F-TYPE as the ride of choice for Ben Kingsley’s character.

For the unique ‘Smart Cone’ challenge, Nicholas put the Jaguar XF AWD R-Sport through its paces around a course situated in the beautiful backdrop of rural Sardinia, where the Art of Performance Tour visited in August. The course was built on a low-grip sandy surface, pushing both Nicholas and the AWD capability of the XF to the limit.

The Smart Cone course uses wireless technology to randomly illuminate pairs of cones to set out a PORTO POLLO, SASSARI, SARDEGNA, ITALY - 19 AUGUST 2016
Nicholas Hoult attends Jaguar - The Art of Performance Tour on 19 august 2016 at Porto Pollo Beach in Sardinia, Italy © Photo: Tullio Puglia/Getty Imagesdifferent route each time. With millions of different potential options taking place in real time, the technology provides a unique test of driving skill, precision and reactions.

The challenge is part of the Art of Performance Tour – a worldwide tour for Jaguar fans that provides the opportunity to drive the latest Jaguar products. To get behind the wheel and challenge Nicholas’ score of 42000 and Romain’s score of 49032 points, sign up here – www.jaguar.com/experience

Nicholas said: “I’ve loved getting behind the wheel of the new Jaguar XF AWD R-Sport. Driving scenes in films can be a challenge – everyone expects you to be a superstar even behind the wheel and I’m definitely not a pro driver – so it’s good to be able to put my skills to the test in a safe environment.

The XF AWD R-Sport is great – it does a lot of the work for you. I was driving on a particularly challenging surface with lots of sand and dust but the car just gripped and performed. It was really fun to be able to compare driving the car here to some of my driving experiences when filming and hopefully I’ve done myself justice!”   

The new all-wheel drive option is available for the 2.0D AWD R-Sport variant of the model (not available in Australia). It brings Jaguar’s Intelligent Driving Dynamics system, shared by the F-TYPE AWD, to the executive saloon. With the ability to transfer torque to the front axle when it senses a loss of traction, the system provides surefooted capability across all surfaces.

Current Tour locations will include:
Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Finland, Romania, Turkey, Ireland, Germany, Austria, Czech Republic, Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg, Italy, France, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, UAE, Qatar, India, Singapore, Philippines, New Zealand, Japan, Poland, Hungary, Bulgaria, Greece, Moldova, Ukraine, Australia, South Africa, UK, Brazil, Korea, Russia, USA, China and Canada.

High-Tech, High-Style: All-New Holden Astra is Coming Soon

 

All-New Holden Astra gaycarboys (1)

 

  • First Holden Astra rolls off the production line in Europe
  • Special pre-order campaign sees Holden Astra pricing start at $21,990
  • Advanced technology includes Automatic Emergency Braking, Forward Collision Alert, IntelliLux LED Matrix headlamps, Apple CarPlay® and Android® Auto and rear view camera
  • Holden Astra on sale from December 2016

Holden has announced the high-tech, all-new Astra will soon arrive in Australia with customers able to get their hands on the 2016 European Car of the Year for as little as $21,990. Customers are urged to register their interest early by visiting Holden’s ‘Astra: Coming Soon’ webpage or by contacting their local Holden All-New Holden Astra gaycarboys (3)dealer.   

Rolling off Opel’s Gliwice production line for the first time, the all-new Holden Astra comes to Australia after receiving multiple awards and accolades in Europe… thanks to its impressive blend of premium European styling, world-class driving experience and an array of high-tech features.

Holden Executive Director of Sales, Peter Keley, said the all-new Astra will be the next vehicle to be launched in Holden’s huge new product onslaught and offered the perfect combination of leading design, performance and technology with exceptional customer value.

“It’s incredibly exciting to see the first all-new Holden Astra built and ready to ship – it’s a stunning car, packed with state-of-the-art technology, and another great example of the exciting future vehicles we will be introducing over the next couple of years. Holden has committed to replacing or refreshing every single model in our line-up as part of our plan to launch 24 new models by the end of 2020,” said Mr. Keley.

“Astra’s premium European design oozes quality and style, and with Australian input and extensive global testing, you can be sure it will deliver the performance and refinement Holden has built its reputation on.

“Standout features including Automatic Emergency Braking, Forward Collision Alert and Active Lane Keep Assist, ensure the all-new Astra brings premium tech and polish to the segment.

“Astra’s combination of state-of-the-art technology, style and performance, coupled with very attractive All-New Holden Astra gaycarboys (4)pricing, will shake-up the small-car segment and redefine what a Holden small car can be.”

ALL-NEW EUROPEAN DESIGN

Whilst the Astra name is long serving in Australia, the incoming Astra is all-new. Developed from a clean-sheet design under the watchful eye of Opel/Vauxhall’s Vice President – Design, Mark Adams, Astra exhibits the same sleek, ‘Sculptural Artistry meets German Precision’ design philosophy first introduced on the stunning Monza concept in 2013.

Focused on blending style and efficiency, Astra is built off a new vehicle architecture that facilitates up to 130kg weight reduction whilst allowing the introduction of distinct styling cues. A rear floating roof design complemented by a sports front fascia and grille that extends seamlessly into the front LED headlamp design, give Astra a strong and unmistakable road presence.

PACKED WITH STATE-OF-THE-ART TECHNOLOGY

Aside from enhancing Astra’s design, the IntelliLux LED Matrix headlamps^ lead the display of state-of-the-art technology packed into the ninth of the 24 new models Holden is committed to launching by 2020. Consisting of 16 individual LED segments – eight on each side of the vehicle – the new LED Matrix system works with the Holden Eye front camera to automatically adapt length and distribution of the light beam, All-New Holden Astra gaycarboys (2)depending on traffic situations. 

Astra’s raft of high-tech features also extends into active safety.  Rear view camera is available as standard across the range, accompanied by Holden Eye forward facing camera^ facilitating key features including Forward Collision Alert, Lane Keep Assist, Automatic Emergency Braking and Side Blind Spot Alert to reduce, and in some cases avoid, collision incidents.

Equally as impressive as Astra’s exterior design is an interior that effortlessly blends style with technology, significantly reducing the number of buttons and adding an element of simplicity when compared with its predecessor.  Centered around a colour touch screen display housing the latest Holden MyLink with Apple CarPlay® and Android® Auto** phone projection technology, Astra boasts luxury leather-appointed, heated front seat as well as a premium heated seated wheel.

ASTRA DRIVES LIKE A HOLDEN SHOULD

Astra is equipped with a new and frugal all-aluminum, 1.4-litre ECOTEC Direct Injection turbo engine capable of producing up to 110 kW of power and 240Nm of torque with a targeted combined fuel consumption of as little as 5.8L/100km. Customers that enjoy a sportier drive have the option of a more powerful 1.6-litre ECOTEC Direct Injection turbo engine, boasting up to 147kW of power and a 300Nm of torque.

Holden’s Director of Vehicle Performance, Ian Butler, said Holden and Opel identified efficiencies and similarities in customers’ expectations and vehicle usage and were able to work together to develop a common vehicle setup.

“Holden and Opel share very similar D.N.A. but we still made sure our engineers were involved in developing Astra and setting targets, right from the start of the program,” Mr. Butler said.

“We’ve engineered our own unique Australian chassis input which, when combined with the new 1.4-litre and 1.6-litre turbo petrol engine options, we’re confident will excel on the variety of road surfaces in Australia.

“Along with Spark and Colorado, Astra is another great example of how Holden is collaborating with GM engineers globally to ensure we can deliver the best vehicles to Australia and also share our expertise for the benefit of other markets.”

The high-tech all-new Astra will go sale in December with customers encouraged to register their interest with dealers early, to avoid missing out.

2017 Holden Astra Feature Highlights

Astra R

  • 1.4-litre turbo ECOTEC engine
  • 17-inch alloy wheels
  • 7-inch colour touchscreen with Apple CarPlay® and Android® Auto
  • Rear View Camera with Rear Park Assist
  • Digital Radio

Astra RS (above Astra R)

  • 1.6-litre turbo ECOTEC engine
  • Passive Entry Push-button Start
  • Advanced Park Assist
  • Side Blind Spot Alert
  • Holden Eye forward facing camera with:
    • Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB)
    • Forward Collision Alert
    • Lane Keep Assist

Astra RS-V (above Astra R)

  • 18-inch alloy wheels
  • Leather-appointed, front heated seats
  • Heated Steering Wheel
  • 8-inch colour touchscreen with Apple CarPlay® and Android® Auto
  • Embedded satellite navigation
  • LED tail lamps
  • Dual zone climate control

2017 Holden Astra Recommended Retail Pricing

1.4L turbo R manual                                      $21,990
1.4L turbo R automatic                                    $24,190

1.6L turbo RS manual                                     $26,490
1.6L turbo RS automatic                                 $28,690

1.6L turbo RS-V manual                                 $30,990
1.6L turbo RS-V automatic                              $33,190

^ model dependent (IntelliLux LED Matrix headlamps are an optional extra on RS-V)

** MyLink infotainment system not compatible with all devices. Apple CarPlay is a registered trade mark of Apple Inc. Android is a registered trade mark of Google Inc.

Astra has received numerous awards including:

Abarth 124 Spider pricing confirmed: Unbeatable value and exclusive Launch Edition for best-in-class performance roadster

Abarth 124 Spider gaycarboys

· Powered by turbocharged MultiAir 1.4-litre engine producing a class-leading 125kW@5500rpm and 250Nm @ 2500rpm

· Packaged for performance, the Abarth 124 Spider features sports suspension, mechanical limited-slip differential and Sport Mode as standard

· Abarth 124 Spider also arrives with standard Brembo brakes and Bilstein shock absorbers, coupled with leather-and-Alcantara sports seat

· Iconic Abarth soundtrack delivered through chrome quad-tip sports exhaust as standard, with optional Monza exhaust for a truly earth-shattering sound

· Available with six-speed manual or six-speed automatic gearbox with paddle shifters

· Aggressive appearance with unique front and rear fascia, 17-inch Gun Metal aluminium wheels, Gun Metal exterior accents

· Delivers best-in-class power and torque, along with segment’s most comprehensive suite of performance components as standard

· Australia’s ultimate performance roadster, the Abarth 124 Spider, priced at $41,990 (MSRP) for the six-speed manual, or $43,990 (MSRP) for the six-speed automatic

· Incredible drive-away pricing: just $43,500 for the six-speed manual anywhere in Australia, putting the Abarth 124 Spider on your driveway at a lower cost than its less-powerful competitors

· To celebrate this iconic nameplate, FCA Australia is offering the first 100 cars as commemorative launch editions, complete with contrasting bumper inserts and tow-hook covers, mirror caps and “1 of 100” launch edition plaque

· Abarth 124 Spider will arrive in Australian Fiat dealerships in October

September 23, 2016 – FCA Australia has today confirmed pricing for Australia’s ultimate performance roadster, the Abarth 124 Spider, which will arrive in dealerships in October.

The stunning Abarth 124 Spider will start at $41,990 (MSRP) for the six-speed manual version – incredible value for its best-in-class power and performance. Customers can also opt for a six-speed automatic transmission, complete with wheel-mounted paddle shifters, for a further $2,000.

But to provide even better value, the Abarth 124 Spider will be offered at a drive-away price of just $43,500 for the six-speed manual, putting the class-leading roadster on Australian driveways at a lower cost than its less-powerful competitors.

Offering best-in-class power and performance combined with stunning Italian design, the Abarth 124 Spider is designed and built for thrills, with its four-cylinder turbocharged 1.4 Turbo engine producing an unrivalled 125kW @ 5500rpm and 250Nm @ 2500rpm, paired with a choice of a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic gearbox with paddle shifters.

Built with a pure performance focus, the 2017 Abarth 124 Spider arrives with a comprehensive list of standard performance components; including a mechanical limited-slip differential, sport suspension and Sport Mode selector as standard.

The Abarth 124 Spider also arrives with standard Brembo brakes and Bilstein shock absorbers, along with leather-and-Alcantara sports seats. And to ensure that iconic Abarth soundtrack accompanies every drive, the 124 Spider is equipped with a chrome quad-tip sports exhaust as standard.

The Abarth 124 Spider has been engineered to offer drivers responsive handling and an excellent power-to-weight ratio in a robust rear-wheel-drive package.

“The Abarth 124 Spider is not just an amazing performance vehicle, but the return of one of the world’s most iconic nameplates to Australian roads,” says FCA Australia President and CEO Steve Zanlunghi.

“And we’re thrilled to reveal today that the most powerful vehicle in its class will offer incredible value in Australia, regardless of whether it’s in the performance-packed Abarth 124 Spider or the commemorative Launch Editions.”

100 Commemorative Launch Editions

To celebrate the return of this iconic nameplate, the first 100 Abarth 124 Spiders will be sold as commemorative Launch Editions at no extra cost. These special-edition vehicles will be easily recognisable via their contrasting bumper inserts, mirror caps and tow-hook covers, while inside each will be stamped with a special “1 of 100” metal plaque.

Performance Characteristics

The 2017 Abarth 124 Spider features the proven turbocharged 1.4-litre MultiAir four-cylinder engine, generating 125kW @ 5500rpm and 250Nm @ 2500rpm, and is paired with either a six-speed manual transmission or a six-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters. The Abarth-exclusive Sport Mode changes the calibrations of the engine, automatic transmission, electric power steering and dynamic stability control system to ensure a sporty, responsive and performance-oriented drive experience.

A mechanical limited-slip differential, featuring a low torque bias ratio, provides improved traction and handling, as well as improved launch performance and power delivery during cornering. The Abarth’s unique sport suspension includes mono-tube Bilstein front and rear shock absorbers for increased traction and more precise handling. The as-standard Brembo braking system offers monoblock aluminium calipers with four pistons, allowing for unparalleled braking performance.

The Abarth 124 spider creates a new benchmark in the roadster segment. Much of the weight is concentrated between the axles and the engine is installed behind the front axle to guarantee agility and superior driving feel. Sophisticated mechanicals and the use of special materials have contained the weight to just 1,060 kilograms, which results in a weight-to-power ratio of 6.2 kg/HP, the best in its category, and perfect 50/50 weight distribution in running order, which translates to great agility and performance.

Chassis & Braking System

The suspension of the Abarth 124 Spider has a double-wishbone layout in front and a five-link set up in the rear, specifically tuned for greater braking and cornering stability.

“Abarth by Bilstein” dampers, together with stiffened anti-roll bars, provide ultimate handling and driving comfort. The Abarth dynamic vehicle set-up ensures customers can get true driving pleasure out of the rear-wheel drivetrain.

The Brembo braking system, features monoblock aluminium front calipers with four pistons, improving braking effectiveness and guaranteeing very short braking distances, and excellent resistance to brake fade.

Powerful Engine & Sporty Gearboxes

The Abarth 124 spider is equipped with a powerful 1.4-litre MultiAir Turbo engine boasting 125kW and 250Nm of torque. Impressive acceleration allows the sprint to 100km/h to be achieved in only 6.8 seconds. A sports exhaust is standard equipment and can be upgraded with an optional dual-mode Monza exhaust for even greater auditory pleasure.

The Abarth 124 Spider is available with a six-speed manual or a six-speed automatic gearbox. The first is characterised by quick and accurate shifting with a short-throw, direct lever. The six-speed automatic gearbox is the result of careful tuning to exploit all the engine torque, conveying genuine race sensations. Using the lever or the paddles behind the steering wheel, shifting is extremely fast and the performance of the car is boosted even further by setting “Sport” mode on the driving mode selector.

Throttle-Steer Driving Style

The Abarth 124 Spider is equipped with state-of-the-art electronic devices and active safety features to ensure the Abarth provides a proper race car feeling. When driving on track, the new 124 Spider lets the driver disengage the electronic controls to experience the perfect mechanical balance and linear engine response – the trademarks of a genuine rear-wheel drive performance car.

The Abarth 124 Spider will be on sale in all Australian dealerships from Friday the 7th of October.

Pricing:

Abarth 124 Spider – Six-Speed Manual
MSRP: $41,990
Drive Away: $43,500

Abarth 124 Spider – Six-Speed Automatic
MSRP: $43,990
Drive Away: $45,500

Abarth 124 Spider pricing confirmed: Unbeatable value and exclusive Launch Edition for best-in-class performance roadster

· Powered by turbocharged MultiAir 1.4-litre engine producing a class-leading 125kW@5500rpm and 250Nm @ 2500rpm

· Packaged for performance, the Abarth 124 Spider features sports suspension, mechanical limited-slip differential and Sport Mode as standard

· Abarth 124 Spider also arrives with standard Brembo brakes and Bilstein shock absorbers, coupled with leather-and-Alcantara sports seat

· Iconic Abarth soundtrack delivered through chrome quad-tip sports exhaust as standard, with optional Monza exhaust for a truly earth-shattering sound

· Available with six-speed manual or six-speed automatic gearbox with paddle shifters

· Aggressive appearance with unique front and rear fascia, 17-inch Gun Metal aluminium wheels, Gun Metal exterior accents

· Delivers best-in-class power and torque, along with segment’s most comprehensive suite of performance components as standard

· Australia’s ultimate performance roadster, the Abarth 124 Spider, priced at $41,990 (MSRP) for the six-speed manual, or $43,990 (MSRP) for the six-speed automatic

· Incredible drive-away pricing: just $43,500 for the six-speed manual anywhere in Australia, putting the Abarth 124 Spider on your driveway at a lower cost than its less-powerful competitors

· To celebrate this iconic nameplate, FCA Australia is offering the first 100 cars as commemorative launch editions, complete with contrasting bumper inserts and tow-hook covers, mirror caps and “1 of 100” launch edition plaque

· Abarth 124 Spider will arrive in Australian Fiat dealerships in October

September 23, 2016 – FCA Australia has today confirmed pricing for Australia’s ultimate performance roadster, the Abarth 124 Spider, which will arrive in dealerships in October.

The stunning Abarth 124 Spider will start at $41,990 (MSRP) for the six-speed manual version – incredible value for its best-in-class power and performance. Customers can also opt for a six-speed automatic transmission, complete with wheel-mounted paddle shifters, for a further $2,000.

But to provide even better value, the Abarth 124 Spider will be offered at a drive-away price of just $43,500 for the six-speed manual, putting the class-leading roadster on Australian driveways at a lower cost than its less-powerful competitors.

Offering best-in-class power and performance combined with stunning Italian design, the Abarth 124 Spider is designed and built for thrills, with its four-cylinder turbocharged 1.4 Turbo engine producing an unrivalled 125kW @ 5500rpm and 250Nm @ 2500rpm, paired with a choice of a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic gearbox with paddle shifters.

Built with a pure performance focus, the 2017 Abarth 124 Spider arrives with a comprehensive list of standard performance components; including a mechanical limited-slip differential, sport suspension and Sport Mode selector as standard.

The Abarth 124 Spider also arrives with standard Brembo brakes and Bilstein shock absorbers, along with leather-and-Alcantara sports seats. And to ensure that iconic Abarth soundtrack accompanies every drive, the 124 Spider is equipped with a chrome quad-tip sports exhaust as standard.

The Abarth 124 Spider has been engineered to offer drivers responsive handling and an excellent power-to-weight ratio in a robust rear-wheel-drive package.

“The Abarth 124 Spider is not just an amazing performance vehicle, but the return of one of the world’s most iconic nameplates to Australian roads,” says FCA Australia President and CEO Steve Zanlunghi.

“And we’re thrilled to reveal today that the most powerful vehicle in its class will offer incredible value in Australia, regardless of whether it’s in the performance-packed Abarth 124 Spider or the commemorative Launch Editions.”

100 Commemorative Launch Editions

To celebrate the return of this iconic nameplate, the first 100 Abarth 124 Spiders will be sold as commemorative Launch Editions at no extra cost. These special-edition vehicles will be easily recognisable via their contrasting bumper inserts, mirror caps and tow-hook covers, while inside each will be stamped with a special “1 of 100” metal plaque.

Performance Characteristics

The 2017 Abarth 124 Spider features the proven turbocharged 1.4-litre MultiAir four-cylinder engine, generating 125kW @ 5500rpm and 250Nm @ 2500rpm, and is paired with either a six-speed manual transmission or a six-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters. The Abarth-exclusive Sport Mode changes the calibrations of the engine, automatic transmission, electric power steering and dynamic stability control system to ensure a sporty, responsive and performance-oriented drive experience.

A mechanical limited-slip differential, featuring a low torque bias ratio, provides improved traction and handling, as well as improved launch performance and power delivery during cornering. The Abarth’s unique sport suspension includes mono-tube Bilstein front and rear shock absorbers for increased traction and more precise handling. The as-standard Brembo braking system offers monoblock aluminium calipers with four pistons, allowing for unparalleled braking performance.

The Abarth 124 spider creates a new benchmark in the roadster segment. Much of the weight is concentrated between the axles and the engine is installed behind the front axle to guarantee agility and superior driving feel. Sophisticated mechanicals and the use of special materials have contained the weight to just 1,060 kilograms, which results in a weight-to-power ratio of 6.2 kg/HP, the best in its category, and perfect 50/50 weight distribution in running order, which translates to great agility and performance.

Chassis & Braking System

The suspension of the Abarth 124 Spider has a double-wishbone layout in front and a five-link set up in the rear, specifically tuned for greater braking and cornering stability.

“Abarth by Bilstein” dampers, together with stiffened anti-roll bars, provide ultimate handling and driving comfort. The Abarth dynamic vehicle set-up ensures customers can get true driving pleasure out of the rear-wheel drivetrain.

The Brembo braking system, features monoblock aluminium front calipers with four pistons, improving braking effectiveness and guaranteeing very short braking distances, and excellent resistance to brake fade.

Powerful Engine & Sporty Gearboxes

The Abarth 124 spider is equipped with a powerful 1.4-litre MultiAir Turbo engine boasting 125kW and 250Nm of torque. Impressive acceleration allows the sprint to 100km/h to be achieved in only 6.8 seconds. A sports exhaust is standard equipment and can be upgraded with an optional dual-mode Monza exhaust for even greater auditory pleasure.

The Abarth 124 Spider is available with a six-speed manual or a six-speed automatic gearbox. The first is characterised by quick and accurate shifting with a short-throw, direct lever. The six-speed automatic gearbox is the result of careful tuning to exploit all the engine torque, conveying genuine race sensations. Using the lever or the paddles behind the steering wheel, shifting is extremely fast and the performance of the car is boosted even further by setting “Sport” mode on the driving mode selector.

Throttle-Steer Driving Style

The Abarth 124 Spider is equipped with state-of-the-art electronic devices and active safety features to ensure the Abarth provides a proper race car feeling. When driving on track, the new 124 Spider lets the driver disengage the electronic controls to experience the perfect mechanical balance and linear engine response – the trademarks of a genuine rear-wheel drive performance car.

The Abarth 124 Spider will be on sale in all Australian dealerships from Friday the 7th of October.

Pricing:

Abarth 124 Spider – Six-Speed Manual
MSRP: $41,990
Drive Away: $43,500

Abarth 124 Spider – Six-Speed Automatic
MSRP: $43,990
Drive Away: $45,500

LEXUS UX CONCEPT INTRODUCES HOLOGRAM-STYLE DISPLAYS

 

Hologram style displays are a feature of the Lexus UX Concept gaycarboys

 

The Lexus UX Concept, making its world debut at the 2016 Paris Motor Show, presents a vision for imaginative, forward-thinking technologies that will provide vehicle occupants with a fully immersive experience.
The radical interior of the Lexus UX Concept reveals floating hologram-style displays for the driver’s instrument binnacle and centre console, alongside the latest advances in vehicle electrical technologies.
A vision for a compact Lexus SUV of the future, the UX Concept represents a new step in the company’s design journey and a redefinition of the driving experience.
All on-board human-machine interface technology has been designed to offer an innovative, three-dimensional driver experience to progressive customers who live and work in an ever-connected environment.
The driver’s instrument binnacle houses a transparent globe, floating in the manner of a hologram, in which a combination of analogue and digital information expresses a functional yet unexpected user interface.
The centre console features a prominent, faceted crystal structure within which a hologram-style display of the air-conditioning and infotainment systems is clearly visible to both driver and front passenger.
The latest advanced in-vehicle electrical technologies are also on display in the new UX Concept. It features electro-chromatic windows while door mirrors are replaced by e-mirror camera housings that are far slimmer than conventional mirror assemblies. All switchgear is electrostatic and displayed under transparent covers.
Finally, the fin motif used on the A-pillar lining is repeated on the dashboard to provide an advanced audio experience for the new-generation Lexus customer – a demountable sound bar built into the passenger side of the dashboard.
“Our brief was to create a new genre of compact crossover; a vehicle that could create something unique from a customer’s point of view – an innovative, three-dimensional, fully immersive user experience.” Stephan Rasmussen, Designer at European Design Centre, ED2.

Road Trip in Peugeot’s Frisky Filly, the 308 GTI 270

 

308 GTI 270 gaycarboys (1)

 

308 GTI 270 gaycarboys (2)308 GTI 270 gaycarboys (3)

308 GTI 270 gaycarboys (5)308 GTI 270 gaycarboys (6)

Above left: tiny single cup holder behind gear stick,  Right: dials read opposite directions

308 GTI 270 gaycarboys (7)

 

 

What a peach.

When I drove the 308 GTI 270 (henceforth known as the GTI or I’ll be driven quite mad) on the track, I loved the rocket-like performance. But, the suspension felt quite soft yet firm on the track and I wondered how that 308 GTI 270 gaycarboys (4)might fare on a road where there are potholes and ruts.

Well, I can answer that now after 2,400kms, it went well, very well.

With your hoof flat to the floor, there is a pleasing “pop” as she snorts haughtily between gears. Sadly, since you get to the speed limit in 3rd gear, the pops are few and far between. The acceleration feels linear with a turbo that kicks in early thanks to a twin scroll. The sport button makes a slight difference, but not so much that you are pinned back in your seat. It adds extra oomph to the acceleration and makes the instruments all red and angry, which is kind of cool. Slightly less cool is the excellent exhaust note, which is only inside the cabin via the genuine fake-engine-noise-valve. Fake engine noise in any car is naff, it’s the real thing or nothing as far as I’m concerned.

First: The OK Stuff.

Getting your geek on means playing with the infotainment system. For the first time since PSA introduced this system, I’ve had enough of a s stint to really get under the skin of it. Nearly all functions of the centre stack have been subsumed by a single 9.7” screen. We wanted it, now we have it we are not so sure we wanted it.

There is no “home” screen, but all functions have fixed virtual buttons down either side of the screen. You can also access some of these functions from the steering wheel controls. Only two buttons are backlit though meaning the thumb-wheels go dark once the sun goes down. You have to remember which wheel does what.

It was hard to go between radio stations regardless of which controls you use. The media home screen displays radio, ipod, jukebox etc. Labels are clearly laid out but the function is not immediately obvious.

The Presets page is accessed by pressing the preset bar, and the list of current stations by pressing the station button. There is no need to tune as you pass from state to state because the system keeps a current list for you to select from. The screen is “mapped” so that most of the displayed items are also hot buttons like hyperlinks on a webpage. You press the temperature and you go to a small climate control screen with the 2 zone temperature adjustments. This saves even more time. Of course there is no feedback which leads to my criticism of this system. No matter what you want to do, you have to take your eyes off the road. When there was a button for most functions, you could easily use your muscle memory to dial up the heat or change to the Buddha Chill Station, or at least you could if the GTI had DAB. Now, you must look at the centre console. Even using the steering wheel buttons means looking at the console because the functions of the buttons change depending on what the screen in the middle is displaying. There is another small 3” display between the tacho and speedo which shows you what’s going on depending on the functions you have it set to. This display can be toggled though by pressing the button on the end of the wiper stalk.

The driver’s LCD is normally used for the digital speedo when I’m at the helm. For some reason I find the normal dials harder to read. In a fit of Frenchness, both dial hands move towards the centre of the cluster instead of both the tacho and speedo hands moving in the same direction. Why? Just, why? Driver info should be clear and need no interpreting.

Also, the “heads up” i-cockpit has the instrument cluster sits above the tiny bread-and-butter-plate sized steering wheel. My Peugeot tells me I’ll get used to it.

The Downright Awful

There is a single cup holder buried deep in a smallish bin in the centre console. It is so deep down that a regular cup disappeared well below the top of the console. Fishing it out went fifty shades of bad. The flimsy lid deformed allowing the cup to also deform. You guessed it, coffee everywhere. There is a very narrow opening with a ledge at the front and rear making it even harder to use. Had the cup holder have been adjustable in height, there would be no problem. Remember, you’re going to be using this at 110kph on a road trip.

The Rest is Marvy

The looks are stunning. Once a bit of an old frump now looks brilliant with Daytime Running Lights in bright LED, and cutting edge head and tail lights also with LED tech The tri-claw rear lights look so sexy with claws outlined in LED lines. The discrete chromed Peugeot badge on the grille looks classy. All current 308 hatches look amazing.

As good as 19” wheels look, I’d prefer a little extra sidewall in 18” tyres. Most punters can’t really tell the inch difference between 18” and 19” much as they say otherwise, so eighteens are fine for me. It’s an option of course, but you notice the occasional choppiness of the ride on nineteens. The GTI gets rambunctious on bumpy corners. The rest is sheer joy.

The Trip

M1 roadhouse lunchtime day 1 308 GTI 270 gaycarboys

 

 

I set off on the crack of morning tea on Thursday. My early day was scuttled by a bad night’s sleep. Sydney came over all moody with the sky a murky shade of green-grey. Those who regularly drive the Pacific Hwy, or M1, or Pacific Motorway, or whatever it is called this week, will know the untold misery of even the best of runs. Sydney has been dogged by massive road works to be paid for by selling the electricity transmission lines, or by tolls, or both. There are billions being spent to make the road between Brisbane and Sydney 2 lanes each way.

Vast swathes are still poorly maintained, pot-hole riddled goat tracks with a single lane each way. This 19th century transport solution is where grey-haired motorists towing caravans gather in their hundreds. They drive up and down at half the speed limit making life for everyone else on the road an absolute misery.

I’ve fancied taking a modern hot hatch on a road trip because I wanted to see if it was actually possible. On the M1, the 308 was extremely comfortable. I discovered a series of buttons which cause a gentle squeezing and kneading action in the seat. It makes a long journey even more comfortable. The firm cushions are covered in covered in Alcantara. There’ll be some who prefer leather to fabric no doubt, but I am not one of them. For those unfamiliar with Alcantara, it is a man-made fabric resembling suede leather but needs rather less fuss to keep it looking good.

As the day wore on, the way was paved with considerably less ami. Many comfort stops punctuated the progress. It drove me mad when each time I started the car, I had to tell the satnav to continue the trip. If I Va toilet in the middle of a farmers field day 3 308 GTI 270 gaycarboysmissed the cue, I had to initiate the route again. I use the Satnav to keep an eye on the arrival time on every long trip so having to remember to be quick enough to press Yes” is annoying.

The real joy of stopping for a coffee and toilet break was being able to hear the popping noise as I changed up through the gears. GTI’s main rival, the Golf GTi also has this pleasing blip. The gear changes are sweet with a medium throw between each gate. The clutch is very light too.

The afternoon saw the weather deteriorate even further. Water over the road at 100 can be frightening but the GTI coped without blinking an eye.

 

By now, we had used much of the 53 litre fuel supply. I get nervous about getting below ¼ of a tank. This is even more important in a smallish tank where failing to fill will leave you on the side of the road with your filler cap swaying in the breeze. This brings me to the economy figures. Of the 2,400 km, only 100 km was in town. We got 6.4 L/10km which considerably higher than either the highway cycle of 4.9L/100km, or the combined of 6.0L/100km. Although 828 km out of a tank is a decent figure, it falls far short of the 1,081 Peugeot claims we should get.

As night fell, the heavy showers continued their waves of misery making the visibility fairly appalling. Bright Visitng grandma day 3 308 GTI 270 gaycarboyslights glinting of the rain-splattered glass was made worse by schmaltz kicked up by hundreds of trucks.

11 and a half hours later, I rolled into Brisvegas feeling somewhat shell-shocked. Fed and watered, I collapsed into bed.

The weekend highlight was the 90th birthday of a favourite uncle and before I knew it, it was time to retrace my route to Sydney.

Impressions

The Peugeot 308 GTI 270 is extremely comfortable. The cabin is thoughtfully laid out with the exception of the daft single cup holder.

For years we’ve been asking for fewer buttons on the centre console, but I’d like 6 or 8 radio presets, (including DAB, Carplay/Android Auto), and A/C temperature controls. There is too much switching between functions for my liking. If the passenger wants to make changes, they would need to toilet break pacific hwy day 5 308 GTI 270 gaycarboys (1)disturb the driver who might be following the satnav. Although the driver still receives turns via the central LCD in the instrument cluster, I’d rather the passengers not disturb driver’s zen.

The GTI has excellent handling, and the 270 has 200kw and 330Nm does a decent 6.0 seconds from zero to 100 kph. The steering feels light and precise and although there is not the road real there once was, Peugeot Sport has made a decent fist of making the driver feel connected to the road. Although the low profile tyres made the ride choppy from time to time, it was incredibly comfortable the rest of the time. The harshest of bumps sounded far worse than they felt.

The GTI 250 has a full sized spare tyre but the 270 only comes with the puncture repair kit. I threw a spare into the boot but would find a way to have a space saver permanently in the wheel well.

I’ve already said I don’t love the I-cockpit. I’d rather conventional instruments with a proper heads-up display, but I’d no doubt get used to things after a few months behind the wheel. Peugeot has persisted with an onboard hard disc drive “jukebox” to store music. There is also a CD player which is now sounding distinctly last century. When was the last time you played a cd, let alone in a car? Exactly.toilet break pacific hwy day 5 308 GTI 270 gaycarboys (2)

While on the subject of the infotainment system, plugging in your Iphone causes the system to select it, and start playing the first song in your library. You could really get to hate that song after a while.

I do not like the fake engine noise that comes with activating the sports button and will say no more on that subject.

testing the navman Satnav dashcamcomboI’d rather not have to use 95ron unleaded but this is a high performance engine. There is much cost in making bespoke components, especially of exotic materials like those in this engine. Peugeot Sport did a brilliant job of making a family hatch into something special. Even better is the fact that it is not so hard-edge that you can’t use it daily. Most of the time the 308 is a pussycat, but it only needs the slightest poke to make it angry.

There are few options, and the one to make the most impact is the striking red/black paint job. I want it so badly that I’d consider paying the $5,000 price. Whether or not I’d actually part with the cash, who knows.

Conclusion

There is a fistful of worthy competitors, most notably the ferocious 257kw/440Nm Focus RS. Although I haven’t driven it yet, the figures are impressive. The RS has AWD and costs $55,839 tiny tyndale roadhouse day 5 308 GTI 270 gaycarboys[7]driveaway NSW VS $55,038 driveaway for the 308 GTI 270. If I wanted the red/black paint job, I’d need an extra 5 grand. Finally, the 0-100 is dispatched in a mere 4.7 seconds for RS VS the 308’s 6.0 seconds.

 

I loved the way the GTI drove. There was a restrained urgency to the acceleration that felt almost relaxed. The cabin looks afternoon tea pacific hwy day 5 308 GTI 270 gaycarboysand feels classy and uncluttered. Apart from a few niggles such as the French cup holder and the odd sensation of the i-cockpit, I loved the Peugeot. My preference for a road trip would be a larger car. That is not what the 308 was made for, but it did brilliantly none the less. I’d get a space saver spare though. Having a full sized wheel chucked in the boot didn’t leave room for my beauty case.

I haven’t even mentioned the smart entry/start, the almost-full suite of safety gear, or the quietness of the cabin.

P

rior to the RS release my choice would have been clear, but now I’m flummoxed.

Citroen To Unveil C3 WRC Concept At Paris International Motor Show

Base de donnée : Astuce Productions

Base de donnée : Astuce Productions

Base de donnée : Astuce ProductionsBase de donnée : Astuce Productions

Base de donnée : Astuce ProductionsBase de donnée : Astuce Productions

Base de donnée : Astuce Productions

 

 

 

Citroën Racing is getting ready for its big comeback to the FIA World Rally Championship, bringing with it a new challenge and adventure for a race team with renowned expertise. It is also an other way for the brand to support the launch of the New C3: an energetic car with a unique shape that packs a real punch under the bonnet.

The world will get its exclusive first look at the C3 WRC concept car at this year’s Paris Motor Show.

Designed by the Citroën style centre in partnership with Citroën Racing, the concept car offers and extreme vision of the C3, muscular and chiseled, with striking visual design.  The concept car heralds the arrival of the race car that will compete for the first time at the Monte-Carlo Rally in January 2017.

Already boasting three driver’s world championship titles, Citroën is now on its way to winning its third manufacturer’s title in as many shots at the FIA WTCC with the C-Elysée. The C-Elysée has encountered both sporting and commercial success in Citroën’s major international markets. Today, Citroën is making another push in its product offensive with the New C3, and is getting ready to win a major championship: the FIA WRC.

The Citroën team is already more than familiar with the WRC, having won 8 manufacturer’s titles and boasting a record 96 wins. A competitive championship that is perfectly suited to the technical foundations of the New C3 and its energetic character.

Very close the finalised car, the C3 WRC concept car hints at the intentions of the Citroën style centre without giving everything away about its final form. Based on the New C3, it retains all of its curves and fresh appeal.

This ultra-sporty, brawny, and chiseled version incorporates the stylistic elements of the consumer version: a two-level illuminated logo, two-tone canopy and accents echoing the colours of the canopy. The exterior also stands out with a chassis 55mm larger than the New Citroën C3, affording greater aerodynamic freedom such as a spoiler for the front bumper.

The C3 WRC’s exterior has been adapted for the racing world with sober bumpers that accentuate the car’s look, as do the dual chrome chevrons that extend down towards the LED daytime running lamps. The decorative touches have also been enhanced: the canopy is adorned with a gel capsule and a yellow border. As for the wing mirrors, they have been sculpted from carbon for a real racing look, and come in yellow to echo one of the colours available for the New Citroën C3.

While the final version that will race in the championship will be fully compliant with current FIA WRC regulations, the C3 WRC concept car is already almost there: indeed, its width has been designed with these New regulations in mind, as have the front and rear aerodynamic adornments. The final racing version will take all of these changes into account. The main ones are listed below:

  • Enhanced engine power to around 380bhp, mad possible in particular by enlarging the diameter of the turbo flange to 36mm.
  • Greater freedom with aerodynamics with a maximum width of 1875mm, a protruding front bumper and a rear bumper fitted with a diffuser.
  • An enlarged rear spoiler moved further back for even greater aerodynamic support.
  • The car is 25kg lighter.
  • Electronic differential control is now allowed.

Committed to an innovative, avant-garde approach, the brand is also unveiling a video showing the C3 WRCconcept car in action. Shot especially for the Paris Motor Show 2016, the film was produced by Citroën and ScanLab Projects, a specialist in “3D scanning”: an innovative image processing technique using scans and data.

The video was filmed in late May at the Portugal Rally, along 26km of the Marao course. Shot entirely in black and white, this artistic direction fits perfectly with the brand’s desire to innovate.

While you wait for the Monte Carlo Rally in January 2017, visit the Citroën stand in Hall 1, Aisle C, Stand 320!

C3 WRC concept car dimensions:

Length: 4.15m
Width: 1.90m