The News for August 14th, 2020

Welcome to the Hooniverse News! As always, this is a weekly recap of the biggest stories in the automotive industry without the fluff or bull. This week: Audi debuts refreshed and more powerful S3, Mazda breaks our hearts by cancelling their TCR car, Hyperion shows off hydrogen power with ridiculous XP-1, BMW confirms an M3 Touring is coming even though it will probably be ugly as shit, and a next-gen Toyobaru 86/BRZ was spied testing.

2021 Audi S3

Audi S3 Sedan

Audi’s awesome little sport compact is getting a bit of a makeover later this year. The S3 sedan and sportback get updated looks, more power, and more #dynamic when they go on sale this month in Europe. US sales will follow shortly, though I don’t suspect we’ll be getting the hatchback here.

Some of the biggest news with the S3 is that it breaks that magic 300 horsepower mark with its newly refined 2.0-liter TFSI turbocharged four-cylinder engine. Some of the tricks they used include an “Audi valvelift system” which adjusts the lift of the intake valve to keep the combustion chambers filled plus better thermal management. Up from 288 horsepower, it now produces 306 horsepower and has 295 lb.-ft. of torque (up from 280) to go with it. The standard seven-speed S tronic offers super quick gear changes and channels power through an also standard performance-optimized Quattro system. They claim a 0-62 mph time of 4.8 seconds on both sedan and sportback models.

Audi S3 Sedan

The chassis is largely the same as the outgoing model with a four-link rear axle and progressive steering, but the standard suspension is now 15mm lower. You can opt for the Series S Sport Suspension with Damper Control as well though. Oil flow in the dampers is controlled by variable valves which adapt to road conditions, driving situations, and driver preferences within a few thousandths of a second. There’s a new electric brake booster as well for “strong and spontaneous deceleration”, which is usually what you want from one of those. All four brake discs are internally vented and sit behind standard 18″ or optional 19″ wheels.

Audi S3 Sedan

There is of course some new design features inside and out as you’ve probably noticed. Basically it’s the same Audi school of thought that brought us a large singleframe grille with its rhombus pattern, various air inlets all around the car, and some splitter and diffuser action – just more of it. They managed to add so much to this little car that it looks more like an RS3 at this point. The interior has some new accents and options as well. You can get Audi’s virtual cockpit, new ambient lighting, and new sport seats with upholstery largely made from recycled PET bottles.

Europe will be getting their first new S3s this October. Prices in that currency that looks like the weird E start at €46,302 and 53 euro cents for the S3 Sportback while the S3 Sedan is listed at €47,179 and 83 euro cents. Yes, they actually factored cents into the MSRP. I can’t think of a press release where I’ve ever seen that before.

[Source: Audi]

Mazda cancels TCR project

Mazda3TCR_02

Welcome to our new reality where everything is terrible and nothing good can exist because of the aforementioned everything that is terrible. Mazda has confirmed some crushing news that their gorgeous Mazda3 TCR project is dead without having turned a single lap in competition. It was revealed last fall with a planned launch this year until their contracted race car builder suddenly shut its doors. The program was then pushed back to 2021. But then the world went to shit and it, like many good things, is being cancelled due to global economic hardships caused by covid-19 according to a report obtained by Grassroots Motorsports.

Mazda3TCR_8

In a statement, they insinuate that the project was being led by Mazda North America. The decision seems obvious given how hard we’re hit over here. After all, Mazda isn’t a massive manufacturer so this program likely took up a not insignificant part of the budget. If Porsche needs to cut GTLM in America to ensure their survival, then Mazda certainly would need to cut TCR. It’s a genuine shame though because this was one of the most beautiful race cars shown in recent memory and it would’ve been a standout in the wonderful TCR class of competition. Just as Mazda was rolling out a turbocharged 3 with some clear influences from the TCR concept, I’m hopeful that they would pick this back up in the future if the Turbo sells well and we’re given a break from this constant hell hole we all live in.

Until then, press F to pay respects.

[Source: Grassroots Motorsports via Jalopnik]

Hyperion XP-1

hyperion_xp1

Remember about a month ago when a mysterious company was promising a groundbreaking hydrogen supercar? The one that I couldn’t find any evidence to prove that it actually existed in the capacity they said it did? Well they’ve made it a step further towards their path to legitimacy – they’ve debuted what they said they would with a timeline for production and without immediately asking for money. There’s still a lot of ambitions and hurdles in their way, like things you’d usually expect from trying to bring your first car to the market. But if it works, this could mean a bright future for hydrogen-powered cars.

Hyperion’s goal with the XP-1, other than to make a name for themselves, was to prove the capabilities of hydrogen power. They say it can provide better performance, longer driving range, quicker fill ups than recharging, and can be more scalable for various applications. They claim their tech is used in space and derived from tech pioneered by NASA. I suppose that’s why they had to make the XP-1 look like it drove through a scifi convention and put S P A C E on the dashboard. It looks like the kind of car that you’d see in b roll shots of a Back to the Future remake.

hyperion_xp1

But ridiculous looks aside, this car could very well help prove hydrogen propulsion as a viable option in the automotive space. Assuming it can actually do what they say of course. They claim 1,000 miles of range with a 0-60 time of “under” 2.2 seconds and a top speed in excess of 220 mph. We don’t have many other specifics on the powertrain, but the obvious question is where would buyers get their hydrogen from. Well, one of Hyperion’s divisions exists solely to answer that question. They plan to build their own hydrogen stations across the country to lay the groundwork for further Hyperion models that would be more fitting for the masses.

They say just 300 XP-1s will exist but more cars that aren’t absurd hypercars are on the way. It’s a huge gamble though because hydrogen has never quite gotten off the ground. They’re not selling well and most markets don’t even have them as options because there aren’t any stations around. So Hyperion would effectively be building hydrogen stations across the country in hopes that their limited edition hypercar isn’t the first and only car they make.

While you can register your interest with them, they aren’t yet asking for deposits. The car is expected to launch in 2022. I’m sure the car will be changing a good bit before it’s deemed road worthy – like, for example, where the hell the front plate would go – but time will tell.

BMW confirms M3 Touring

bmw m3 touring

It only took years of cancelled prototypes and people making their own M3 Tourings for BMW to realize that it may just be a good idea to make their own. With a teaser shot that truly came out of nowhere, BMW has confirmed that the next generation M3 will be offered as a five door wagon. This is truly wonderful news and I’m happy to see people still embracing the wagon.

However… it’s a given that this will be for Europe only since, you know, they’re the ones actually buying wagons. Also there’s that absolutely hideous vertical grille that we got a taste of with the 4 Series which has also been spied on next-gen M4 and M3 prototypes. It’s a great day for wagons and thus the world, but I’m afraid the hype for this car will last until we see the front of it. BMW says they’re still undergoing testing and we’ll soon be able to see it in spy shots on the road and on the ‘Ring but have not given us a timeline for its launch yet.

[Source: BMW]

2022 Subaru BRZ/Toyota 86 spied testing!

Toyota 86 Hakone

I can’t show you the images here because posting spy photos another outlet paid for is kind of a no no, but CarScoops photographers have found next-gen Toyota 86 and/or Subaru BRZ (we can’t really tell which one) testing. Even though they’re still heavily camouflaged, it’s easy to tell that this thing is going to look wonderful. And best of all, their scoops have revealed a cheeky intercooler which would indicate a turbocharged engine. That means more than 200 horsepower! Check out the spy shots they captured and get excited.

[Source: CarScoops]

What’s your automotive news?

hooniverse

That’s all I’ve got for you this week, so now it’s your turn. If you saw anything, fixed something, broke everything, or otherwise did anything even remotely car related that you want to share with your fellow hoon, sound off in the comments.

Have a good weekend.

I'm the guy that spoiled the site with all the new car stuff. Hooniverse News Editor since 2011, amateur motorsport photographer, sim racer, and mountain road enthusiast.

19 Comments

  1. In a stupendous leap forward in adventure technology, the guy who thinks fuel injection is a nifty new idea installed some GPS mapping software on his smartphone.
    Another forward thinking action was to update my tire & tube changing equipment, which ever since 1994 has consisted of two BMW tire spoons. In pristine condition.

    I still carry these things, because sometimes I throw my phone in the water. Also, high level perspective with low level detail.
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/29b7d888ac62c58b1a11f599d883f95d34cc933682581ca3c3987c62579f50b0.jpg

    I installed Locus Maps Free on my aging smartphone and tried it out for a couple weeks. When my new smartphone arrives I’ll put the $$ Pro version on there. It’s just my kind of program that provides a high level of customization to those willing to put in the time figuring it out, but not geared towards the casual end-user. It’s primarily a mountain biking and running software, which makes it good for off-roading-off-grid.

    For tire fixin’ I got some longer tire spoons that incorporate box-end wrenches for the axle nuts, same as I had for my DRZ (why did I give them to the new owner?), a ‘bead buddy’ that helps hold th eopposite bead, and a spoke wrench.
    Still working on a new inflation option, might go with a mini compressor, but I like the old CO2 gadgets as long as they have a control valve (if you just open up the cartridge full bore decompression freezes the Schrader valve in the open position.)

    1. If you plan on traveling where cell coverage is questionable, remember to put maps for the entire route onto the phone prior to starting the trip. I’ve had to drive miles out of the way just to reacquire signal so I could find out where I needed to make my next turn.

      1. Yep! Even the freeware version of Locus let me download all of California, Oregon and Nevada.
        That Mexicali map in the pic is from that one time when my navigator swore she downloaded all the maps of Northern Mexico we would need, only to have the phone go blank as soon as we crossed the border. She swore she could remember the route they took before, but Oh, No! that street is closed for construction.

          1. Google is evil. Google is primarily an information aggregator, where Locus seems to be made by GIS experts that are secondarily app developers. I’ve never liked Google’s maps anyway, I have the hardest time reading them ’cause the roads are barely one shade lighter than the background. Many annoying things I could probably modify if I took the time, but I’d rather spend that effort working on a product from Czech GIS nerds than a Tech giant.
            I researched what the other motorcyclists were using, and the complaints about Locus weren’t matters that concerned me. People use Google to navigate while running errands, but not to plan multi-day off grid excursions.

          2. Educated opinion of the day: look/listen what other people are complaining about, and consider if that would actually matter for yourself. More +1 to you!
            Edit: also, Google has a record of not implementing/sudden retraction of features, tools, and properties.

  2. Color me legitimately interested in the new 86/BRZ. That does indeed look promising. The only thing I don’t like about the current twins (aside from the fact that they’re coupes and not sedans) is the styling– I’ve hated it from Day 1. This new design looks simpler, purer, and less Toyota-like, although the front end looks like a cross between the new Ford Escape and the Honda S2000.

  3. I think it would be cool if they called the new toyota coupe a Celica. That name sort of faded away when the tC replaced the celica as toyota’s compact coupe. I dont think North America ever had much affinity for the HachiRoku, and FR-S was a poop name. It would mesh with their historic Celica/Supra sports car combo offering.

  4. Since I fixed the overdrive switch and installed the trailer brake controller on my truck midweek I’m celebrating a 3 day weekend of not needing to work on a vehicle.

  5. We’re visiting the in-laws for a little celebration, driving the Camry that started leaking steering fluid for six hours to get here…sigh. Anyway, I use the opportunity to, eh, hide around the property and research paint preserving methods for my new pride and joy. The black piano paint, or “ebony black” as Hyundai so eloquently put it, is screaming for attention. Detailling though is a rabbit hole too deep for me to enter.

    So I landed on the classic Auto Glym Super Resin Polish, a filler polish with unspecified sanding ability, and Fusso99, a wax sealer that most people seem to be happy with. Now I’m totally exhausted, spend an invisible 100$ internet moneyz, and need you guys to confirm that I didn’t just make a fool of myself…I am honestly concerned that I do damage to the paint, after an incident 10+ years ago when polish turned a burgundy Volvo into a pinkish one.

    1. modern paint is really good! I have no idea what that product is but paint is super hard these days, and there’s a nice fat layer of clear coat on top. I’m sure the car will be fine.

      black cars are hard. I’ve been trying to find out more about ceramic coatings but i can’t find an honest review that isn’t bro science or obviously slanted #sponcon.

      1. Ha, that’s exactly it! Paid bloggers and small selling sites create an impenetrable forest of non-information. Detailer forums are obnoxiously “my stuff is best”, like a neighbour defending his Landrover’s stellar reliability record. And everyone is bashing the competitions products…

        I can take a few photos when I get home again, but I am afraid my issues go deeper than the clear coat. It seems there are a fair bit of clear coat scratches, but also sort of white spots in the black paint. It generally just looks incredibly tired…I would never order black paint if I could choose. My fantasy Century was supposed to be Emerald green.

        1. dude. I spent today detailing a black car, then I got blazed and watched videos about what i did. detailing is so stupid. the people in the videos are so serious about it, about the five step routine you *have* to take every week to maintain your paint, but it’s really not that important. if most people could just wax their cars once a year that’d pretty much meet their detailing needs. so the whole industry is just planting insecurity in enthusiasts’ heads about insufficiently deep shine in our paint.

          which I buy into. after typing out my above message i did some detailing I’d been putting off. it’s a stupid concern, but now the car looks great.

    2. I admit that I don’t know much about auto polishes, but my limited experience suggests that problems with color fade cannot be resolved through the use of polish on modern cars. I had, during the later years of the last century, a red car that I kept long enough to encounter fading and other finish problems. I discovered that I could not get to the faded paint pigment because a layer of clear coat was in my way so the faded pigment remained faded. I could (and did) polish the clear coat, but in some places it still turned ‘milky’ white anyhow and in other places I accidentally rubbed it off completely. This gave me access to the faded pigment, but that base paint was -very- thin, still didn’t polish well, and just emphasized the difference between the clear-coated and (now) uncoated areas more conspicuously. The net effect of my efforts left the car looking worse.

      For my current situation (Two white cars, and one Rosso Amaretto)I have settled on “Klasse” which is a polymer product. The company have two products, a cleaner/‘wax’ which I love and find easy to use, and a clear-coat ‘sealer’ with which I have a love-hate relationship. The sealer give a ‘cellophane shine’ (rather than a deep glow like wax) and lasts “forever” but it is very difficult to work with in that you will find places where you thought you had buffed if out but actually didn’t, for weeks after applying it. This naturally requires rewashing the car every time you find a patch you missed since you don’t dare buff a dirty car. This is …..annoying…..

      So, I ain’t got no good answers. Good luck to you and may God have mercy on your soul…

    3. I went down the detailing wormhole about 10 years ago and recently have loosened up about it. All my cars are outside 24/7 and normal daily drivers. Auto Glym Super Resin Polish is perfectly fine for your car (it had very light abrasives and has been formulated for hand application as well as using a polisher). It is a great product that is perfect for a DIYer. I’ve never used Fusso99 but have heard great things about it. I’m at the point to really strip down my routine. In March we bought an off lease 2017 Rav4 and the first thing I did to it was wash. use a clay bar towel with car wash soap as a lubricant. After inspecting the paint, I used Turtle Wax Seal and Shine. (seriously look up the reviews, this is inexpensive, easy to use and super durable). I seriously will not go back to any paste/hand applied sealant again. There are numerous reviews of this product on YT and it shames much more expensive products.

      1. So how have 10 years of proper detailling affected your cars? Did paint last longer in better shape? The Turtle Wax product seems to be quite similar to the Gyeon Q2M Wetcoat I tried earlier, with spray on application. I like that!

        1. I admit it is more for my personal satisfaction ( some call it OCD) as I tend to drive the wheels off of my cars. However, I traded in a 2001 Mitsubishi Mirage several years ago.( this was my commuting appliance for a a 130 mile round trip daily) It was Phoenix red and had over 250k mileage on it and the dealership was impressed at the the paint and interior condition. For me, I have scaled back with full corrections on my vehicles about once annually. However, maintaining them with a quick spray sealant like TW Seal and Shine has helped the process and can be completed in less than 20 minutes

  6. The BMW stranded me on the way home from work last night. Cut out and came back a few times before dying completely on the freeway. Fuel pump is the likely culprit. Supposedly easy to change.

    Someone broke the driver’s window on the Mazda3. I’ll probably fix it but it’s time for it to go. Too much rust and oil consumption. I wonder if any lemons team is looking for a car perfectly set up for a Rust-Eze theme?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

The maximum upload file size: 64 MB. You can upload: image, audio, video. Links to YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and other services inserted in the comment text will be automatically embedded. Drop files here