The News for October 26th, 2018


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. There’s also just a little opinion of mine because I can. This week:

  • Audi reveals sharper and more powerful R8

  • Camaro SS SEMA concept reportedly previews fixed fascia for production

  • The Ford Ranger officially returns to the US next week!!!!

  • What’s your automotive news?

2019 Audi R8


Just a few weeks after Audi revealed a new and improved R8 LMS for GT3 racing, the road car that started it all gets its fair share of updates. The timing is appropriate as the new R8 road car has more in common with the race car than ever before. It’s more powerful, sharper, and has just enough extra styling to look new and [even more] interesting.
The face lifted and extensively updated 2019 R8 shares around 50% of its parts with the R8 LMS GT3 car and 60% with the GT4 version. Most of that comes down to the 5.2-liter V10 which they say is “nearly identical” to what’s in the race car, even down to the separate radiator for the new dry sump oil system. And since the road version doesn’t need to worry about series homologation, there was nothing stopping them from adding even more power.

Exactly how much power remains to be confirmed; they’re still offering two power levels between the ‘normal’ R8 and the R8 Plus but they’re expected to close the gap slightly between the two. Autocar reports the base V10 jumps significantly to 562 horsepower while the V10 Plus slightly increases to 611 horsepower.
Sharpness is the buzzword with the updated suspension and retuned driver assistance settings. For starters, the electromechanical steering with its optional variable ratios has become more responsive and should deliver more feedback from the road. New driving modes are added and the Electronic Stability Control works harder to keep things in line under heavy braking. There’s even an option for a front stabilizer made from carbon fiber-reinforced polymer and aluminum which cuts weight by four whole pounds.

The top-of-the-line R8s are capable of 1.5Gs in cornering (hence the need for the dry sump) it’ll be more stable and precise across the board and we have every reason to believe that claim.
That theme of sharp and edgy carries over into the styling which almost makes the previous version look bland in comparison. There’s a lot going on up front all of a sudden with the wider and flatter “Singleframe” grille, divided air inlets, and flat slits in the hood. The rear diffuser is also new with more pronounced exhaust surrounds and some extra ventilation.

Up to three available exterior packages are available depending on the engine selection which add various highlights to the front splitter, the side trims, and the diffuser. Kemora Gray and Ascari Blue (both pictured) are new colors. New 19″ and 20″ wheels are available as well.
The 2019 Audi R8s will go on sale early 2019 with European deliveries commencing within Q1. America and other markets will follow sometime later. Prices have not been confirmed yet, but if you have to ask, you obviously haven’t established an LLC in Montana.
[Sources: Audi and Autocar]

Chevy reportedly rushing to fix Camaro SS styling


In today’s increasingly divided and hostile society it’s rare for a majority of people to agree on something, but the verdict on the face-lifted 2019 Camaro was overwhelmingly negative. It was seen as too busy and just plain unattractive by, uh, a lot of people. Your third-or-fourth-favorite automotive site had plenty to say about it as well. Apparently GM was listening.
About a week ago, Chevrolet revealed a Camaro SS show car headed for SEMA in a flashy “Shrek in the Swamp” green (ok that’s not actually what it’s called). They casually mentioned a few things that were done to the nose of the car which could make it less offensive to eyes. According to a report by GM Authority, that new nose is likely headed for production… as soon as possible.
The report confirms that Camaro sales have been falling and the rejected Transformers prop of a redesign has done little to fix that since it launched *checks notes* two months ago. This “snap decision” to include the new fascia in the SEMA car is either jumping the gun without giving the new models much of a chance or damage control; either way, GM Authority hears it’s being fast-tracked for production and will be standard on next year’s models.

The new fascia does two crucial things for the Camaro SS: it ditches the black face paint for a body-colored crossbar and correctly moves the bowtie off said crossbar and into the upper grille. GM Authority obtained images of the current fascia on the show car so we can more closely compare the two.
Do you think it works? I’d say it’s a definite improvement but still a downgrade over the older gen sixes.
[Sources: GM Authority via Autoweek, Chevrolet]

Ford Ranger production restarts in US next Monday


That is all.

What’s your automotive news?


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.
[Image © 2018 Hooniverse/Greg Kachadurian]

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.

12 Comments

  1. The 2019 Camaro fascia version 2.0 is an improvement, but still pretty ugly. What was wrong with the 2018 nose that they felt they needed to change?

    1. Just like with the previous silverado, I don’t think many lay-people even realized that they designed a totally new car, since it looked so similar to the fifth-gen.

  2. Ordered top strut mounts for the suspension I have acquired for the Stromtrooper 4Runner. Absolutely ecstatic to get it on the truck soon.

  3. Every time I see a new Audi I think of my 2007 A3. Still think it’s the best car I ever had. On the other hand the tire pressure sensors are wonky on the Acura. I’ll replace them when I put winter tires on it about a month.

  4. I had to get the starter replaced on my truck last weekend after it was obviously about to die. The weekend prior the truck wouldn’t start and I had just gotten it packed for Petit Le Mans. It would fire up later on but only after some convincing. I was pleased to see how easy it was to replace while my friend did all the work 😛

  5. I saw one of the new Ranger Raptors the other day, it is actually tamer than some modified ‘normal’ Rangers I have seen. (aka no photo…)

  6. A bit on the fringe of what we usually discuss here, but pick up trucks are becoming a political argument in a white house paper:
    https://preview.ibb.co/g7hLLq/n-NW6ewe48-uj-PAj93o77-Mwy-FWQIbdjv-IXt-Cavu-OWqjvw.jpg
    As a sociologist and economist, this whole report is a very odd read. In wealth research, you wouldn’t want to use averages, rather medians, for grand comparisons like that – precisely because the US has individuals with incomes on the scale of tiny countries, and a lot of really poor people on the other side. Also, “single earner married households”…I know of none such in my entire area, and if one part didn’t work for anything but health reasons, it would attract curious attention. Pickups are not used as cars either in Europe. There is so much more off with this whole opinion piece dressed as social science, it is giving social sciences a bad rep. And I don’t even think that the US should mimic any other society in order to change itself; even though we all learn from each other’s experiences, which is usually a good thing.

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