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The News for June 27th, 2014

Greg Kachadurian June 27, 2014 The News! 12 Comments

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Welcome to the Hooniverse News! As always, this is a weekly recap of some of the biggest stories in the automotive industry without the fluff or bull, which this week is mostly from the Goodwood Festival of Speed happening now. Along with the facts you need, I just throw in a little opinion of mine because I can. This week:

  • Jaguar confirms F-Type Project 7 for production, all wars end

  • McLaren Special Operations to produce special 650S model

  • Ford introduces the all-new Edge

  • Ford updates the Focus ST to make it awesome-er

Jaguar F-Type Project 7 (production)

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I suspect that Jaguar is about to make a lot of people very happy. They’ve been on a roll over the past couple years as jaw-dropping concepts have turned into jaw-dropping realities and doing so largely unchanged (think F-Type). As if the regular F-Type Roadster and Coupe weren’t enough, the Jaguar F-Type Project 7 Concept was revealed last year to pay tribute to Jaguar’s road racing heritage (“7” stands for their seven Le Mans wins) and set the internet abuzz. Revealed at this weekend’s Goodwood Festival of Speed 60 years after the debut of the D-Type which inspired its design, that Project 7 Concept is the next car which gets to be promoted to production-spec.

The Project 7 is Jaguar’s most performance-focused car [soon to be] on sale and will be the fastest and most powerful production model to date… if you ignore the XJ220, which was faster. Jaguar’s Project 7 is definitely more powerful though, thanks to its 5.0-liter supercharged V8 which produces 567 horsepower and 502 lb.-ft. of torque. Power gets channeled to the rear wheels through Jaguar’s most aggressive eight-speed Quickshift automatic transmission and an Electronic Active Differential which helps the 0-60 mph sprint happen in just 3.8 seconds and eventually a limited top speed of 186 mph.

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Along the way, drivers, anyone brave enough to ride shotgun, and really anyone within a couple miles of the thing will also enjoy that glorious V8 sound through Active Sport Exhaust which features bypass valves that allow for a free-flowing arrangement and a much louder, meaner sound. Torque Vectoring by Braking is standard equipment and it works its magic by applying precise amounts of braking force to each wheel independently to sharpen the car’s line through a corner. Carbon Ceramic Matrix brakes, which measure 15.7″ front and 15″ rear in size, offer high resistance to fade and enough power to prevent a botched turn from ending in disaster. Jaguar’s newly formed Special Vehicle Operations, which is largely responsible for this car coming to light, has given it a substantially reworked suspension setup which includes height-adjustable spring and damper units as well as a recalibrated Adaptive Dynamics system which actively adjusts said suspension to cope with driving conditions.

Project 7’s all-aluminum body work (with some carbon fiber thrown in) is largely unchanged from the concept. The most notable difference is the addition of a second rollover hoop behind the passenger seat, both of which didn’t exist in the concept. The D-Type-inspired rear fairing and shorter windshield carry over unchanged along with the carbon fiber front splitter, rear diffuser, adjustable rear spoiler, and side skirts which all contribute to an increase in downforce of up to 177%. Along with improved downforce comes less weight with the a loss of 176 pounds dropping the overall weight down to just under 3,500 pounds.

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The interior is reflective of the car’s personality as well, with lightweight race-inspired, diamond-quilted bucket seats, available four-point racing harnesses, carbon fiber veneering, an Alcantara steering wheel, and special badging. Conveniently, there is also a folding Bimini roof included but I’d imagine most owners will leave it stowed.

Jaguar’s F-Type Project 7 is the first of many upcoming halo cars which will be conceived at their new Special Vehicle Operations, and boy, what a way to start. Deliveries will begin from mid-2015 in a variety of markets including North America, though NA’s model will differ slightly in ways which are yet to be disclosed. Pricing is not available yet.

[Source: Jaguar]

McLaren 650S MSO

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McLaren has had a Special Operations team of their own since a year or two after the launch of the MP4-12C and that team was also responsible for a few limited-run models which further enhanced an already incredible car. Now that the 650S has replaced the MP4-12C, McLaren Special Operations has turned their attention away from the old and on to the new.

The McLaren Special Operations (MSO) 650S Spider was revealed ahead of Goodwood and shows the world a small sample of what MSO is capable of. Also available as a Coupe but limited to just 50 units worldwide, this 650S features new exterior components, new wheels, and unique interior treatments which you can’t find on a standard 650S. It appears that performance upgrades aren’t part of the package, but does this car really need any of that?

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Carbon fiber is the material of choice for all of the new body panels, including side blades and the rear diffuser. Three also unique paint choices are available such as Papaya Shark (a new version of McLaren Orange), Agrigan Black (features ruby red flakes), and the attractive Sarigan Quartz which is pictured and features vibrant metallic silver paint with a subtle infusion of golden stuff. The exterior is topped off with Palladium colored ten-spoke alloy wheels which feature a unique diamond cut effect on the spokes and save almost 9 pounds over the standard wheels.

The interior is upholstered with carbon black leather and Alcantara with carbon fiber and glossy painted trim pieces.

Pricing for the MSO 650S Coupe and Spider are about $430,279 and $464,360 respectively (converted). Only the British pricing was official, so I assume that McLaren won’t actually charge that much for a 650S… but at least it includes a matching bag.

[Source: McLaren]

2015 Ford Edge

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And now for something that won’t be at Goodwood, the 2015 Ford Edge. A “better vehicle by every measure”, the all-new Edge features new looks inside and out, improved craftsmanship, new technology and comfort, and better driving dynamics (because that’s exactly what a crossover needs). Set to go on sale Q1 of 2015, the third-generation Edge hopes to further strengthen Ford’s position as the global leader in utility vehicle sales.

The new styling reflects that of the current lineup which was first established by the 2013 Fusion – which the Edge also shares a platform with – and features a more athletic, sporty appearance. Underneath the sheet metal is a reworked suspension setup which is designed to deliver comfort and more confidence as it navigates through shopping mall parking garages. The new stiffer body structure and advanced suspension means bumps are dealt with more smoothly than before. It even features and independent rear suspension, which the Mustang didn’t have until now. Another new feature is adaptive steering which decreases the amount of input required at lower speeds, a first for Ford.

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Three engine options are available including two which are new to the Edge. A 3.5-liter V6 will continue to be offered but a new twin-scroll 2.0-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder (245 hp / 270 lb.-ft.) and 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6 with “more than” 300 horsepower are available as well. All engine options dump power to the ground through a six-speed automatic and into the air you breathe through dual-output exhaust. For those who really want it,
“race-inspired” paddle shifters are standard too.

Ford’s most comprehensive suite of technology will be available on the 2015 Edge and it enhances the car’s comfort, safety, and efficiency. A brief list of those features include active grille shutters, adaptive cruise control with collision warning and brake support, an air curtain which improves aerodynamics at speed, blind spot monitoring, rear camera and front 180-degree camera, hands-free liftgate, lane keep assist, SYNC displayed on an eight-inch touch screen, 360-degree parking sensors, curve control which helps slow the car down through turns, inflatable rear safety belts to mimic the effects of airbags, and much more. I guess you could say this crossover is on the very cutting edge of technology (sorry).

The cabin, which is larger and features more storage, is all-new as well with new styling, new (for the Edge) materials, and is also quieter than ever.

Pricing is not available yet.

[Source: Ford]

Ford Focus ST

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Back to Goodwood we go. As was expected, Ford has updated the Focus ST in a similar fashion to what’s already been done on the standard Focus. All new technology and the improved build quality of the standard car carries over to the ST as will its slightly revised styling. What’s mostly been improved though is what matters on a car like this, which is  its driving dynamics.

A quick rundown of new features for the 2015 Focus ST include redesigned, sportier front and rear styling, standard LED signature lighting, two choices of eighteen-inch alloy wheels, red painted brake calipers, satin black of high gloss red over-the-top stripes, redesigned instrument panel with improved climate control and new finishes, upgraded cup holders (!!!), new flat-bottom steering wheel which can be optionally heated, improved steering feel, available eight-way adjustable driver’s seat, and did I mention new cup holders?

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Power from the 2.0-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder remains at 252 horsepower and 270 lb.-ft. of torque and the six-speed short-throw manual transmission its paired with also remains as the only available gearbox. As far as improved driving dynamics goes, the sport suspension is updated with all-new front springs and more aggressive shock tuning at each end for sharper handling. Another thing Ford claims to have improved is the steering feel from the electronically-assisted power steering system, but I of course have my doubts.

[Source: Ford]

What else to expect from Goodwood…

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Many of the world’s leading manufacturers are at the Goodwood Festival of Speed to reveal something new and exciting at one of the world’s most prestigious events, like three of the manufacturers discussed above. They’re not the only ones we’ll see something from though…

Aston Martin is expected to reveal their Vision Gran Turismo concept, the DP-100, as teased in this video and with the image above. Like other Vision Gran Turismo concepts we’ve seen so far, this could give us an interesting, super early hint as to what we can maybe expect from Aston Martin in the near future. [Video source: Gran Turismo TV]

Nissan will be at Goodwood as well with their previously covered 2020 Concept, which seems to be their radical idea for a future GT-R. The car will be available for free as a digital download in Gran Turismo 6 in the coming weeks but those who attend Goodwood can see the car in the flesh.

McLaren has teased a new racing version of one of their road cars ahead of the Goodwood festival. My guess: 650S GT3 to replace the MP4-12C GT3. What I want it to be: P1 GT-R.

Land Rover has also hinted at revealing the Range Rover Sport HSR, a super sporty model which has gone through rigorous testing on the Nürburgring. We’ve only seen it in camo so far, so hopefully we’ll get a chance to see it uncovered (or hopefully not).

Of course, by the time this goes live some or all of these cars and more could already be revealed in full. Since I likely won’t be able to update this, I’ll point you to our friends at Autoweek for up-to-date coverage on these cars as they’re revealed.

  • I Think Not

    Is anyone else getting irritated with Ferd's cagey "more than ### horseponies!" talk with reference to the new 2.3L and 2.7L ecoboost engines? This close to production, you still haven't nailed down how much power your motor is going to make?

    • PotbellyJoe ❤❤❤❤♡

      To my understanding, some of it has to do with the standard required testing that goes into HP and the turbos exacerbate the issue. It's easier when your engine is standard motor from another car that doesn't need unique piping for its turbo to fit in the engine bay. Then because new SAE standards have you attach all accessories, etc. you can't test until you finalize the layout and such.

      But that's just what I heard/remember from a buddy in the industry, over drinks, when I complained about it.

      Of course there's a pokerface method to it too of not showing your full hand before market, so they're not working hard to lessen the issues above either.

      • I Think Not

        That makes perfect sense, but I don't remember this much vague nonsense about past turbo engines, even when new.

        • PotbellyJoe ❤❤❤❤♡

          Yeah, for that I couldn't tell you. The newest round of SAE stuff came into play ~7 years ago, so it's not like it's a new issue.

  • Sjalabais

    Gold and yellow – pride and envy. Ford's got confidence!

  • I wonder if the members of McLaren's regular development team get all pissy because they don't get to work on the exciting stuff.

    And BTW, just for the opportunity to drive that Jag, I would perform a daredevil trapeze act, without a net, in front of a audience of machine-gun wielding asylum inmates who are off their medication.

    • Yes, I'm sure you'd be welcome to bring it to a LeMons race, but you should still expect some penalty laps.

      • Van_Sarockin

        It's a Jaguar. You can rely on it to fail on its own merits.

    • topdeadcentre

      Either that or the "regular development team" and the "special development team" are one and the same, except that they call themselves special on Fridays after a round or two of lunchtime double espressos.

      Trophies and medals for everyone!!

  • IMO Pike's Peak > Goodwood

    That said, Goodwood gets all kinds of crazy debuts.

  • I Think Not

    Is that interior shot of the Focus from the new-and-NAH ST diesel (STD? ::shudder::)? I know turbo gassers don't need to spin to the stratosphere to make power, but a 5000rpm redline seems a bit low.

    • tonyola

      Couldn't tell you, but it's nice that Ford is still including extra gauges on its dashboard, even if they're mounted on the upper edge.