Make no mistake: Mini is the force to be reckoned with in the Dakar Rally. Former champion Nasser Al-Attiyah has just taken his second win in the famously grueling trans-continental rally, making it four in a row for BMW's premium small-car brand.
This month, Audi said it will boost spending by two billion euros ($2.5B US) over the next five years, for a total outlay of 24 billion euros from 2014 to 2019. Something like 70 percent of those billions will be spent on new models, technology like "connectivity and lightweight construction," and factory expansion at its plants in Ingolstadt and Neckarsulm.
For motorsports fans in the US, the winter is often a wasteland of interest, leaving us to look forward to warmer weather and the return of racing. However, there's a lighthouse that shines each year during the cold doldrums in the form of the Dakar Rally. Often broadcast in the wee hours of the morning, it gives the DVR-savvy a reprieve to watch motorcycles and trucks blasting through the desert while the snow falls outside at home.
The Top Gear crew may have encountered more of an "episode" than they bargained for on their recent trip to Argentina. But before the team had to flee the country under the imminent threat of violence, they apparently got enough footage to put together a TV special, and that special will air in two parts after Christmas.
A couple of months ago, the team from Top Gear ticked off masses of locals in Argentina and had to flee the country – leaving their cars behind. Now it seems the BBC crew is trying to get those cars back.
It was a mixed bag for the Porsche team at the 6 Hours of Sao Paulo this weekend – the last race of its first season in the FIA World Endurance Championship. On the one hand, the German team took its first win since launching its LMP1 effort at the start of this season. On the other, its star driver suffered a massive crash that left him in the hospital.
Formula One got the drawn out Driver's Championship it wanted, which won't be decided until the last race in Abu Dhabi, and it didn't even need double points to do it. A trip below the equator turned around more than merely weather patterns, Nico Rosberg throwing his Mercedes AMG Petronas around the Interlagos track faster than teammate Lewis Hamilton every time it counted, beginning with Free Practice 1.
Ford rolled into the Sao Paulo Motor Show with some pretty cool crossovers in tow, the awesomest of all being the EcoSport Storm concept shown above, which draws its inspiration directly from the F-150 SVT Raptor. It packs a lower grille clearly derived from the now-famous muscle truck, as well as a Blue Storm paint job, black and silver trim, special graphics, lower body cladding and 215/75 R15 off-road tires. Don't go holding your breath for a supercharged V8, though; made locally in Brazil, I
Looking forward to getting your mitts on a new Land Rover Discovery Sport? Well you should, because it promises to be a markedly better product than the Freelander/LR2 it replaces. Just don't assume it will necessarily be built in the UK, as just about every Land Rover has in the company's 66-year history.
If you've been following the news from the Sao Paulo Motor Show, you'll likely have seen not only a series of new concept cars, but also a whole mess of production vehicles you never knew existed because they were developed specifically for the Latin American market. One of them is the Hyundai HB20.
Crossovers are the name of the game at the Sao Paulo Motor Show this year, with numerous European and Japanese automakers using the occasion of Latin America's largest auto show to showcase new high-riding concepts. This latest example comes from Citroën.
The striking new concept vehicle seen above is called the FCC4, which stands for Fiat Concept Car... with, um, four doors. We're not quite sure what else to call it, because the Fiat Design Center Latam (as in, Latin America) has apparently tried to transcend market segments and traditional bodystyles as much as possible. It's sort of like a four-door coupe, riding high on a jacked-up suspension, with what looks at first like a pickup bed but is actually covered by a sloping glass fastback.
Barely three weeks ago, Renault-owned Romanian automaker Dacia showed off a pickup-bodied version of its Duster SUV. A special job for Romania's OMV Petrom Group, the Duster pickup isn't available to the European public. The new Duster Oroch, however, could be.