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:
Volkswagen debuts two new concepts they could actually build
Ford updates the Mustang for 2016, adds blinkers on the hood again
BMW to debut 3.0 CSL Hommage concept
Dodge prices the Viper ACR
Chevrolet to reveal new Camaro tomorrow, makes sure we all already know how it’s going to look
What’s your automotive news?
Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport and GTE Sport concepts
This week, one of the world’s biggest Volkswagen meets is going down in Wörthersee, Austria. It’s that annual thing where a bunch of GTIs assemble around the beautiful Lake Wörthersee to do GTI things. Volkswagen always brings some kind of concept to the show as a treat for the guests, but this year they’ve brought two: the Golf GTI Clubsport and GTE Sport concepts. I try to keep concepts out of this esteemed column as much as possible, but these two serve a real purpose. And news was a little slow this week.
The Golf GTI Clubsport is surprisingly tame for a concept and it’s functional. It’s an idea for an even sportier, more serious GTI which packs the same 2.0-liter turbo vier as the GTI but with up to 287 horsepower thanks to some tuning and an overboost function. The car also features a reworked aero kit and some new wheels as well as other visual tweaks. The exciting part of this one is that it’s already been more or less confirmed to see production next year as Volkswagen celebrates 40 years of the Golf GTI. A Clubsport GTI of some sort will be sold in… uh, some markets and will surely look very close to this.
As for the other concept, it’s not nearly as tame. The Golf GTE Sport Concept is a plug-in hybrid super Golf that we really, really want to see the light of day. It’s powered by three motors, including a 1.6-liter turbocharged four cylinder borrowed from the Polo R WRC car. When two other electric motors are working in harmony with a freakin’ rally car engine, total system output is around 395 horsepower and 494 lb.-ft. of torque. 0-62 mph takes just 4.3 seconds.
With added power comes added lightness thanks to its carbon fiber body and other trickery they’ve learned from motorsport. The interior is removed of anything unnecessary and adds racing seats, a racing wheel, and five-point harnesses on each set. As for the styling, it’s just as crazy and awesome as it should be. This concept may not make it to production exactly as is, but I fully expect to see that powertrain technology reach a production VW within the next few years.*
*I base that on zero facts. But trust me, I’m a blogger.
2016 Ford Mustang updates
The roads are just starting to get saturated with 2015 Ford Mustangs and Ford has already announced an updated Mustang is coming for 2016. The Mustang gets two familiar packages added to its options list once again and it gets a new party trick.
First of all, the hood-mounted turn signal indicators are back! As with the 1967 Mustang, the 2016 Mustang will feature turn signal indicators tucked away cleanly in individual hood vents. This will be standard equipment in the Mustang GT.
Two iconic packages return to the 2016 Mustang fastback and convertible, those being the California Special and the Pony Package that originally debuted in the 60’s. The California Special (available on the GT Premium) adds 19-inch ebony-painted machined aluminum wheels, ebony leather/miko suede inserts with red stitching, aluminum dashboard finish, hood and side stripes, strut tower brace with special badging on it, performance splitter, and a unique grille. The California Special will be available this fall.
The Pony Package (available on the EcoBoost model) adds 19-inch polished aluminum wheels, the classic tri-bar pony logo on the grille, side stripes, and chrome window surround. Another option available on the EcoBoost Mustang is a black-painted roof, which hasn’t been a factory option since the last Boss 302.
The Mustang GT Convertible, when equipped with a manual, can also now be ordered with the Performance Package. Formerly a Fastback exclusive, this features increased structural bracing, revised suspension components, better brakes and tires, and bespoke wheels.
Also returning to GT and EcoBoost models are over-the-top stripes from the factory available in black or silver over most paint colors and trim packages.
The 2016 Ford Mustang will be available to order soon, but you’ll have to wait for fall to get the California Special and “by the end of the year” for the Pony Package.
BMW 3.0 CSL Hommage concept teased
The original BMW 3.0 CSL has aged beautifully since its introduction in the 1970’s. It’s still one of the most beloved cars to wear a kidney grille and it’s a great reminder that BMW used to be really cool. Next week, BMW hopes to bring some of that old school cool back to life with a 3.0 CSL Hommage concept, as teased here.
The full thing will be revealed on May 22nd at the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este by Lake Como, Italy. Our invitation was lost in the mail, but it’ll feature plenty of gorgeous, pristine machinery along with the world debut of what could be the best concept BMW released in recent memory. It’ll draw on the character of the original 3.0 CSL but will use modern materials and engineering to sort of remaster it for 2015. Also they promise it’ll be lightweight and not nearly as bloated as the whale that is the X6 [they didn’t actually say that last part].
It’ll maybe be revealed just in time for the news next Friday, so I’ll bring you more as it becomes available… unless BMW IP bans me from their press site for calling the X6 a whale.
Dodge Viper ACR priced
Last week, Dodge revealed the most insane factory-built, road legal Viper in history in the form of the all-new Viper ACR. This week, they’ve officially opened the order books for the track-ready model and have announced pricing.
$117,895 will get you prime seating in a 645 horsepower track monster. That includes more or less everything that can come with the car, including its adjustable and removable aero elements, adjustable track suspension, huge carbon ceramic brakes, somewhat legal tires, and all the incredible performance that comes with it. The Viper ACR is eligible for the 1-of-1 program as well, which allows buyers to personalize their Viper in a myriad of ways with the promise that no other Viper will be identical for that model year.
Viper ACR production will begin in Q3 this year and will start arriving in dealerships shortly thereafter.
The new Chevrolet Camaro debuts tomorrow
The all-new 2016 Chevrolet Camaro debuts tomorrow at Detroit’s Belle Isle Park, but before they show us the whole thing, Chevrolet showed us most of the whole thing in a new teaser talking about the aerodynamic improvements.
Total aerodynamic lift is improved by 30% for improved stability thanks in part by the flush belly pan, which replaces a traditional front air dam. The car’s wind tunnel testing helped shape much of the car’s finer details. Chevy engineers have not only been able to improve stability, but also improve cooling, reduce wind noise, and improve overall performance.
Since it debuts the day after this news piece is being run, I may cover it tomorrow in a separate post – unless I’m lazy or it sucks (probably the former).
What’s your automotive news?
I’ve been playing Project CARS. It’s very good even though getting this in-game picture was a thousand times harder than it needed to be. Look for a review on Monday, maybe. Also, I need a new GPU.
Now it’s your turn. If you saw, bought, drove, fixed, broke, or otherwise did anything newsworthy that you want to share with your fellow hoon, sound off in the comments.