The News for June 6th, 2014

Audi RS 7 Sportback 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. I just throw in a little opinion of mine because I can. This week:

  • BMW gives the X6 a second generation

  • Audi updates the sweet RS7 Sportback

  • Aston Martin returns to the Nürburgring 24

  • Cosworth works their magic on the Toyobaru

  • Ford reveals awesome off-roader in Brazil, gives us hope

  • Mini elongates the Cooper for a new five-door model

2015 BMX X6

P90151860 This is arguably the biggest news story of the week, yet it isn’t the car on the lead image. You’re welcome. And now for a combination of words that most BMW enthusiasts didn’t want to hear: the new BMW X6 is official. The awkward “four-door coupe” SUV thing that so appropriately launched during the financial crisis and served as a reminder of all the horrible decisions made in the previous years has been given a second generation. Why? Because amazingly 250,000 people actually bought it even though the X5 it’s based on has more cabin room, is more practical, and is less expensive. I’m not sure why either. With that BMW purist rant out of the way, engineers have truly been hard at work redesigning the X6 by doing exactly what was already done for the new X5 that launched last year. The list of updates include a more muscular and refined design outside – which uh… looks like that – with a new interior and new technology inside, and a familiar but solid range of engine options and dynamic improvements beneath. Engines range from super efficient six-cylinder diesels to BMW’s improved TwinPower Turbo V8 capable of 450 horsepower. For the cooler parts of the world they’ll even continue to offer the straight-six diesel with three turbochargers in the X6 M50d. Over all the X6 line sees a twenty-two percent fuel consumption reduction over the last generation thanks to the efficient turbochargers, the standard eight-speed automatic gearbox, auto stop/start, weight savings, and optimized aerodynamics. The ride is claimed to be smoother but sportier than before and has three suspension packages that cater to different needs – one sportier, one comfier, and one to offer a bit of both.P90151809 The interior looks like that ^. Like all modern BMWs the new X6 comes crammed with technology to make driving more pleasant and not at the center of your attention. Available features include high-end Bang & Olufsen sound system, rear seat entertainment (also known as spirited driving for some), touch-control navigation, heads-up display, park assist with surround view, freakin’ night vision, and a traffic jam assistant of sorts. The 2015 BMW X6 launches this December with additional engine options arriving next Spring. [Source: BMW]

2015 Audi RS7 Sportback

Audi RS 7 Sportback Audi has revealed a life cycle refresh for the RS7 Sportback which focuses on bringing some minor updates to an already attractive package which ought to hold us over until it gets redesigned however many years from now. Shown here in European spec (and eventually making its way elsewhere), the 2015 RS7 Sportback features a few styling updates borrowed from other newer cars in the Audi lineup. That new styling update brings in a sharper and more sculpted front fascia with a new Singleframe honeycomb grille as well as new LED headlights with an option for a Matrix LED setup. Exterior accents all around are darker for a sportier look and “quattro” is proudly plastered on the central air inlet. Optional twenty-one inch cast aluminum wheels (twenty is standard) are available in three colors and do a nice job of showing off the available carbon ceramic brakes that hide behind it.Audi RS 7 Sportback The other updates come inside the cabin with updates to the HVAC controls (fascinating), paddle shifters, and the Multimedia Interface (MMI) which features a new Nvidia graphics processor to speed up its operation and make it look nicer as you slay n00bs… or more realistically as you summon one of its many available displays. Nothing’s changed in the power department but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. The 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V8 still cranks out a mental 560 horsepower and 514 lb.-ft. of torque to all four wheels through a quick eight-speed automatic gearbox. All that means this five-door “coupe” rockets from 0-60 in 3.9 seconds and won’t stop going until it hits 174 mph or 190 mph if you pay them more. Despite the huge performance capabilities, the European fuel economy standards agency people reported an average of up to 25 mpg (US equivalent). Deliveries will begin by the end of the year. [Source: Audi]

Aston Martin returns to the N24

The V12 Vantage GT3 is based on the road-going V12 Vantage S On June 21st one of the most grueling sports car endurance races will take place on the famous Nürburgring 24-hour course. The world’s automotive powerhouses will be well represented, including Jeff’s buddies at Aston Martin who return once more to make their mark. Racing in the GT3-homologated class with a Bilstein-liveried V12 Vantage GT3, team Aston Martin is going for the overall race win at one of their favorite events. Three other near-stock Aston Martin Vantages (two V8 and one V12) will race in lower classes. A notable driver includes Chris Harris who will be in the near-stock V12 Vantage, which should be good. The competition will be fierce and the thirteen-mile track will be relentless as teams compete for a grueling 24 hours straight, but they – as always – feel good about their chances. Even if they’re out of contention they could just send Harris around to drift the whole thing and win style points. Godspeed, Aston Martin (and everyone else just to be fair)! [Source: Aston Martin]

Cosworth Subaru BRZ, Scion FR-S, Toyota GT-86

brzcozsie Why am I talking about tuners? Because Cosworth. The world famous tuning powerhouse that is Cosworth has revealed something I’m sure many were waiting for anxiously. Available in an array of performance kits are their new mutli-stage Power Packages for the Subaru BRZ, Scion FR-S/Toyota GT-86. A series of stages, each with bigger and better upgrades, allows the 2.0-liter boxer four engine to produce upwards of 380 horsepower (eventually), nearly double what it makes from the factory, with no forced induction from what I can tell. The Stage 1 Power Package focuses on a more efficient and of course louder exhaust system with plenty of available components to boost power, but apparently that’s only the beginning. More details including pricing are available from Autoblog. [Source: Cosworth via Autoblog]


P90151637 Oh Mini, what are we gonna do with you… about a week after they reveal the awesomeness that is the Superleggera roadster concept they reveal this, the Mini Cooper Five-Door a.k.a. smaller Mini Countryman. They say it’s the first time Mini has been represented in the small five-door segment, because apparently the Countryman isn’t small enough. The elongated Mini Cooper (wheelbase extends 72 mm) promises more practicality, more rear leg room, but all the driving fun that comes with a Mini. Engine options range from a three-cylinder diesel with 116 horsepower to a turbocharged four-cylinder with 192 horsepower with a manual transmission as standard and automatics available. [Source: Mini] fordbraziltruckthing Ford proved that they haven’t given up on a proper SUV by introducing the spiritual successor to the Bronco… in Brazil. The brand Troller, a recent acquisition of Ford, is responsible for this back-to-the-basics beast. Reportedly available with a 3.2-liter diesel with a six-speed manual, heavy-duty Dana off-road axles, sway-bar disconnect, and all-terrain tires on seventeen in wheels, this Troller is just itching to come to America and show us a good time. Hopefully Ford will make it happen, but they’ll need to find a way to put more cup holders in it first. [Source: Ford via Autoweek]  

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