Babes - Fast Cars

Blog about the car industry and other related car news

Bertone B.A.T.11 will not be at Geneva Auto Show

Italian car maker Bertone has been undergoing financial strife in recent times, and now the future of the Group and of the family-owned but independent Stile Bertone hangs in an uncertain balance. Ironic really, as the vehicles created by the famed Italian coachbuilder were considered the epitome of idealist futurist automobiles.

It has now emerged that Bertone will not be making an appearance at this year's Geneva Auto Show, the first time in more than 50 years that the company will not have a stand at the grand European show. Though the Bologna Auto Show is now the biggest Italian show - replacing the now defunct Turin Motor Show - Geneva is arguably the largest global auto show the Italian marques attend, as they're able to showcase their latest wares in neutral territory and aren't cast in the shadows of the French and German automakers.

It was hoped that Bertone would be exhibiting its latest concept, the B.A.T.11, in Geneva this year, a design inspired by the B.A.T.5., B.A.T.7 and B.A.T.9 concepts developed between 1953 and 1955. The car is based on the Alfa Romeo 8C Competizione. But after receiving a release from Stile Bertone announcing the prototype on February 13, the company's communications department sent through another email stating that it would not, in fact, be attending the show this year.

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A new look for Mercedes-Benz SL

The Stuttgart manufacturer’s iconic luxury sports car, the SL, has received cosmetic and mechanical updating to ensure its styling and performance match the other models in the Mercedes range.

Mechanically, there are two big changes: the introduction of an ‘entry level’ SL 280 equipped with a 228bhp V6, and the adoption of the Mercedes-Benz ‘direct-steer system’ that’s already seen the light of day in the revised SLK and new CLC. The new V6 joins an uprated SL 350 (now 312bhp at 6500rpm), the familiar V8 SL 500 and the silky smooth, range-topping V12 SL 600.

AMG’s own 6.3-litre V8 will replace the current supercharged 5.5-litre V8 of the SL 55 AMG, while the SL 65 AMG, with its 6.0-litre V12 biturbo (604bhp), remains the model line’s flagship. The engineers at Mercedes have been working hard to reduce emissions and fuel consumption. The SL 350 for example - despite its extra power - can return 28.5mpg, a 1.1mpg improvement on the outgoing version.

Inside the new car there’s a redesigned three-spoke leather steering wheel and a completely restyled instrument cluster. As ever, buyers can choose from an extensive options list that includes Mercedes’ patented AIRSCARF neck-level heating system, a Harman Kardon 'Logic7' sound system, and the Intelligent Light System. The latter provides five different light functions designed specifically for typical driving situations and weather conditions, including a ‘Motorway mode’ that’s activated in two stages when the speed exceeds 90km/h, increasing the driver's range of vision by up to 60 per cent.

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The Koenigsegg Edition comes in two limited versions, the CCX and CCXR models

Due to request from certain Koenigsegg Clients and Customers, Koenigsegg has created a Limited Edition version of its sought after cars. The Koenigsegg Edition comes in two limited versions, the CCX and CCXR models.

It features a 4.8L twin supercharged Koenigsegg engine, together with many other unique features. The car is more track biased compared to the standard models, as it has stiffer springs and anti-roll bars, reset dampers and lowered chassis. It also features a fully visible carbon body a large adjustable rear wing, larger front splitter and side strakes for increased down force and a unique forged wheel design.

The interior is also reworked and features; color matched leather carpets, Edition side step plates, Edition chronograph instrument cluster, New edition only layout for the center console control panels.

All other extra equipment comes as standard, such as Carbon Wheels, Special interior trim and color, Rearview camera, Satnav or Bluetooth, Amplifiers, complete Inconell exhaust system in order to save weight.

The Edition cars will be built in two different versions, a CCX model limited to 14 cars with 888 bhp and a CCXR (Bio flexi fuel) model limited to 6 cars with 1018 bhp. The price for the 888 hp CCX is 1 330 000 Euro, and 1 500 000 Euro for the 1018 hp CCXR (E85/petrol flexfuel) version. The two first of each version are already spoken for.
Each car comes with 5 years free Service and Warranty.

Unveiling of the Edition versions will be at the Geneva Motor show in March 2008, where the first delivery will take place.

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Audi TT TDI Coupe and Roadster at the Geneva Motor Show

The diesel TT is here. Audi will unveil the TT TDI Coupe and Roadster at the Geneva Motor Show next week. It was always an obvious thing to do, yet it’s taken the Ingolstadt slowcoach ten years to send its ubiquitous sports car to the black pump.

Precisely. There’s really nothing revelatory about the principle behind the TT TDI, which is why we’re surprised it’s taken Audi so long.

Having said that, let’s not be too glib here – the TT TDI is remarkably efficient, returning well over 50mpg in both Coupe and Roadster forms (53.3mpg and 51.3mpg respectively) and its torque advantage means it will feel genuinely fast.

Let’s be honest, a 0-62mph time of 7.5 seconds (7.8 for the roadster) isn’t gut-wrenching, but the 168bhp diesel engine has 258lb ft of torque at only 1750rpm – 22lb ft more than the 3.2 V6 petrol – and is good for 140mph.

The TT TDI utilizes the same 141bhp 2.0 TDI engine found in the new A4, but the saloon’s tubocharger has been dropped in favor of a bigger unit. Add to that standard Quattro four-wheel drive and the Audi TT looks like it might become the pick of the range.

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Caterham RST-V8 Levante

This is the Caterham RST-V8 Levante, an example of what happens when a chirpy British sports car turns over to the dark side. The Levante is the work of RS Performance, which has taken an SV chassis, stuffed a 2.4-liter supercharged V8 into the front and coated the lot in swathes of carbon fiber. The result is 550bhp in a chassis weighing little over 500kg.

The mathematicians among you will already have worked out that’s over 1000bhp per tonne, and the statisticians will know it’s more than a Bugatti Veyron. The 0-62mph sprint is completed in under three seconds.

With difficulty. The carbonfibre weight-loss diet means there's even less weight to push the rear tyres in the Tarmac. Hopefully the chassis, super-sticky tires and traction and launch control will keep everything tidy.

Russell Savory, the man behind RS Motorsport, has been developing the Levante for over 16 years, so don’t expect any shoddy kit-car workmanship here. Weight-saving measures include a steering wheel fashioned with carbonfibre and Kevlar seats. Even the F1 style front splitter is carbon, although for £115,000 you might expect a bit of racing technology.

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Porche 911 GT Street Cabriolet from TechArt

Like the predecessor the new GTstreet edition centers on a powerful engine: The 3.6-liter twin-turbo flat engine is modified by the TechArt engine specialists and now develops 630 hp / 463 kW at 6,800 rpm, up from standard 480 hp / 353 kW. Peak torque increases from 620 Nm to 820 Nm at 4,500 rpm.

Thus equipped the TechArt GTstreet delivers performance that firmly places it among the world's fastest sports cars: 0 – 100 km/h in just 3.2 seconds, 200 km/h after just 10.9 seconds and a top speed of 345 km/h speak volumes.

The body kit for the TechArt GTstreet was created in the wind tunnel, and offers an optimal symbiosis of aerodynamic downforce, minimized drag and striking design.

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GTA Motor Concept sports car

Spanish motorsport team, GTA Motor has released the images their concept sports car which could deliver 700 hp and set to be priced at €600k.

The work on the car is still at the initial stage so no actual car is available yet. The GTA Concept will be powered by a V10 engine mated to a sequential 6-speed transmission.

The chassis will be made of carbon fiber/titanium and it is reported that the GTA Concept could reach the top speed of 340 km/h (211 mph)

Even at €600k per unit, 8 orders have been received and there will be 99 units to be built annually.

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New Australian sports car E-Vade

New Australian sports car will make its world debut at the Melbourne Motor Show when the wraps come off the Melbourne-built E-Vade.

E-Vade brings to life the dream of a naval officer to design and build his own land-based transport to his own exacting standards.

Lieutenant Commander David Walter is the ship's engineer for the Anzac class frigate HMAS Ballarat.

He has drawn on all his engineering expertise and lifelong love of cars to create a potent two-seater that is equally at home on the track as the road.

E-Vade is a joint effort by David and his wife Peta, who encouraged David to design his own car rather than building a kit car, and has "got out there and got the overalls on" to work on it.

David's objective has been to build a car for himself and Peta to enjoy "and if we end up making and selling more of them, then that's something extra".

It has been more than five years since David and Peta started talking seriously about building the car, with serious design work starting in 2002 and the first parts built in 2003.
E-Vade has a mild steel space-frame chassis clad in fibreglass, and weighs just 950 kg in road-going form and 900 kg for a track car being built beside David and Peta's own car.

Power comes from a Nissan V6 engine, mounted longitudinally behind the driver and modified to produce around 300 kW for the road car and more than 500 kW for the track car.

Both engines drive through a five-speed transaxle built by Ballarat high-performance gearbox manufacturer and exporter, Albins Off Road Gear.

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Production of the Porsche 911 has been suspended after a gas explosion

Production of the Porsche 911 has been suspended after a gas explosion in the paint shop of Porsche’s main factory in Zuffenhausen, Stuttgart. Porsche says that gas leaking from a PVC oven ignited leading to the explosion. Full details are not clear as of yet.

There were no deaths reported, although two workers suffered minor injuries and were taken to the hospital. Both were released later. Some sections of the production line where the 911 is assembled are under water after the sprinkler system went off.

Porsche is saying that production of the 911 will be halted for at least two to three days until the damage can be repaired. The 911 production line churns out around 160 units a day.

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Maserati GranTurismo S with 435 horsepower

Ah yes, the Maserati GranTurismo. The car already has a very special place in hearts and next week at the Geneva Motor Show, our feelings will only get stronger for this sexy coupe as Maserati brings us the GranTurismo S. The Maserati GranTurismo S will take this stylish coupe into the high-performance league with an extra 30 horsepower.

The Maserati GranTurismo S will be powered by a 4.7 liter V8 engine producing up to 435 horsepower and will be matted to Maserati’s quick-shifting automated manual gearbox. The range-topping GranTurismo also comes with powerful Brembo brakes as standard. More performance details will be announced next week at the Geneva Motor Show.

There are also minor changes to the exterior styling tweaks to give the GranTurismo a more aggressive look. The interior is trimmed with leather and Alcantara and features a bespoke seat design.

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Jaguar XJ Portfolio

Jaguar’s commitment to creating beautiful, fast cars continues with the introduction of the new XJ Portfolio - first revealed on the Super V8 Portfolio special edition in 2005.

Already renowned for its all-aluminum body construction, state-of-the-art technologies and outstanding craftsmanship and build quality, the new XJ Portfolio is now even more desirable thanks to its unique exterior and interior styling cues.

Luxury, elegance and dynamic performance are XJ signatures. The XJ Portfolio adds a host of bespoke design cues and styling features that set it apart. The exterior is painted in either Celestial Black or Astral Gold, with contrasting side power vents in milled aluminum. A distinctive profile is completed by new 20″ Selena alloy wheels featuring red Jaguar ‘Heritage’ center badges.

XJ Portfolio’s dynamic excellence is underpinned by XJ’s all-aluminum monocoque body construction and highly advanced chassis and suspension. Lightness with strength and exceptional rigidity provide a platform for remarkable agility and performance, as well as safety, improved fuel efficiency and lower emissions. Computer Active Technology Suspension (CATS), Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) and a self-leveling air suspension ensure impeccable control and a ride that is involving yet composed and refined.
In the U.S., the 2009MY XJ Portfolio is available with Jaguar’s highly acclaimed 4.2-liter V8 supercharged (400bhp SAE) or the naturally aspirated V8 engine. In either derivative, the XJ Portfolio offers effortless performance and exceptional refinement.

XJ Portfolio’s individuality is further reflected in a luxurious interior characterized by premium quality materials and exquisite attention to detail. The hand-crafted Rich Oak veneer is new to XJ Portfolio, and there is the choice of two unique interior themes – Navy or Ivory. Each features contrast piping to the softgrain leather upholstery, special twin-stitched door casings and headrests embossed with the Jaguar ‘Leaper’ design. The alloy gear selector, with aluminum gearshift surround, is also trimmed with Navy leather, and there are ‘Portfolio’ branded treadplates and special leather-edged carpet mats.

And XJ Portfolio’s premium specification includes individually heated and cooled front seats; 7-inch Touch-screen operation of the satellite navigation, Jaguar premium sound and dual-zone climate control systems; Bluetooth® connectivity for up to five separate telephones; JaguarVoiceTM, Adaptive Cruise Control, and rear multimedia system with DVD player and twin display screens.

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That’s the Mini John Cooper Works

Just take it in for a moment. That’s the Mini John Cooper Works you’re staring at, all 208bhp of it. Mini will unveil this steroidal version of the already beefy Cooper S at Geneva 2008 before opening the books in July, so get saving.

The Mini JCW extracts an extra 33bhp over the standard Cooper S by dumping the regular turbocharger and strapping on a bigger, twin-scroll unit. The air filter and exhaust get a tinkle too – the JCW’s twin central tailpipes have noticeably more girth, which should enhance the soundtrack.

Can do. Using a leaden right foot to coax the overboost function, which briefly summons an extra 14lb ft of torque over the standard 192lb ft, the JCW will sprint to 62mph in 6.5 seconds.

It’ll top out at 148mph, giving Mini the perfect opportunity to squeeze a couple more numbers onto the dinner plate-proportioned central speed – it now reads 160mph, ten more than lowlier versions.
And if it’s a pub stat you’re after, get this: the Mini JCW produces 132bhp per liter from its turbocharged 1.6. That’s a good one to bore Civic Type-R owners with.

The JCW debuts Mini’s Dynamic Traction Control (DTC) system, which allows the front wheels to spin slightly when you’re caning it, before handing over to the standard DSC if things get out of hand. They can both be fully switched off too, in which case you’re free to slide around to your heart’s content, aided only by the standard limited slip differential.

It’s all pretty standard upgrade stuff after that really. You know the drill; sportier 17-inch rims stretched over bigger, bright red brake calipers; suspension dropped by 10mm; stiffer springs; a few JCW badges and a more aggressive body kit. Expect a pair of deep bucket seats in the front as well.

A six-speed manual shifter is the only gearbox option and, as ever, power is driven through the front wheels.
The JCW Clubman is like phoning for Batman and getting Robin instead – it still has the utility belt and a cape, but it’s all a bit, well, embarrassing. The extra weight means it’s slightly slower to 62mph (6.8 seconds), and the length will blunt the handling ever so slightly. From our experience with the Clubman though, it might offer a better ride compared to the hatch. And if you must have that bit extra space and another door, there it is.

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Fiat 500 Abarth

Watch out Mini, the Fiat 500 is getting the high-performance treatment. The Abarth version unveiled today is pitched as a new interpretation of the Sixties road racer, but can they make a bigger, heavier hatch as exciting as that?

The 500 Abarth 2008-style uses the Fiat group’s 16-valve 1.4-litre Fire engine breathing with the assistance of an IHI variable-geometry turbocharger to deliver a warm 135bhp at 5500rpm. So this car won’t challenge the upper echelons of hot-hatchdom that now have to pump out closer to 200bhp to be in contention. That honor will befall more tuned Abarth SS versions that are under development.

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Peugeot 308 GT THP

Peugeot is hammering the final nails into the coffin of the 307 with two new additions to the 308 range – a warmed-up 308 GT THP and a practical SW estate – both due to be unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show in March 2008.

Peugeot has given that ‘Lion’s nose’ bonnet a bit more, erm, growl by dropping the 175bhp engine from the 207 GTi into it. That means 0-62mph comes up in 8.3 seconds while the top speed is 140mph. Hardly headline-grabbing, but 180lb ft at only 1600rpm (or 195lb ft on overboost) means it should feel just as punchy as its younger brother.

As is customary these days, CO2 emissions have gone down compared to the 180bhp 307 the GT replaces. It’s a bit more economical too, returning 37.1mpg if you drive it nice and slowly.
This warm 308 looks quite aggressive though...
It does indeed. In addition to that in-your-face grille Peugeot has added bigger wheels, lowered suspension, a redesigned front bumper and a new rear spoiler. You can decide whether it’s delightfully aggressive or just OTT, but it’s certainly a big step forward over the 307.

Inside’s the same story too. The quality is considerably up over the 307, and in the GT you get a six-speed manual 'box topped with an aluminum knob. The pedals also have aluminum facials, while the new sports seats should offer decent support. Expect prices to start at £19,000 when the car goes on sale in the UK in April 2008.

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The New Chrysler 300C

The Chrysler 300C is one of those rare ‘unfaceliftable’ cars, you might think. But that hasn’t stopped them having a fiddle with this striking saloon - and this is the first glimpse of the 2008-edition model.

The gangster-special 300C gets a modestly refreshed exterior and cabin improvements across the range, and you can now buy the diesel model in sporty SRT-Design spec (pictured here). All models get a new rear fascia and rear light clusters, while saloons boast a new bootlid with integrated spoiler and high-mounted brake light.

Inside, all 300C models get a new instrument pack and center console, with satin-silver finish, soft-touch armrests and door panels, and gadgets such as touch-button ignition, fully adjustable steering wheel and improved interior lighting. Music lovers can spec the optional MyGIG infotainment system with a large 20GB hard drive and touch-screen sat-nav.

The new SRT-Design spec brings the SRT-8 performance model looks to the 215bhp 3.0 V6 diesel saloon and Touring versions. It comes with 20in alloy wheels, wheelarch spats, bodykit and chrome mesh grille, as shown in our photos. Inside, the MyGIG multimedia kit, sports steering wheel and seats, and carbonfibre inserts are standard.
Chrysler has rationalized the 300C range and the saloon now comes with two engines: £27,495 diesel or £40,995 SRT-8, the latter sporting a 425bhp 6.1-litre Hemi V8.

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Vida Guerra and Old-timers sexy shoot

Vida Guerra is a Cuban-born American model, actress, and singer. Her first notable appearance was in the U.S. edition of FHM magazine in December 2002; since then, she has modeled for many other men's magazines.

Born in Havana, Cuba, Guerra moved with her family to the United States soon after, ending up in the town of Perth Amboy, New Jersey. While growing up, she entered several fashion shows modeling swim wear, and appeared in a few music videos.
Guerra's first national exposure came when she appeared in a lingerie spread for FHM in December 2002. The magazine later reported that following its publication, almost one-third of their mail was from readers demanding more photos of her. She was called back for more photo shoots and became "FHM's Model of the Year" in 2004.

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