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:
Porsche brings Turbo S E-Hybrid powertrain to Panamera Sport Turismo
Ford goes all in on the luxury truck trend with Super Duty Limited
Porsche reclaims production car record on the ‘Ring with GT2 RS
Upcoming Subaru concept may preview new WRX
Dyson wants to build an electric car by 2020
What’s your automotive news?
Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo
Porsche’s most difficult name to remember is now this powerful variant of the Panamera Sport Turismo wagon. The range-topping Turbo S E-Hybrid powertrain has already been released in the Panamera saloon, but this high-performance hybrid option will soon be offered in the much cooler body style.
Those that correctly opt for the Turbo S E-Hybrid will get the best of both worlds. Porsche’s 4.0-liter biturbo V8 (550hp) is paired with a 918-inspired electric motor setup (136hp), creating an all-wheel-drive eco warrior with up to 680 horsepower and 627 lb.-ft. of torque combined. 0-62 mph is achieved in just 3.4 seconds and on pure battery power alone it can travel up 30 miles and at speeds of up to 87 mph… just maybe not at the same time. The batteries can be charged on the go or in as little as two-and-a-half hours when plugged in.
With the Turbo S E-Hybrid powertrain comes a load of standard performance features like dynamic chassis control, torque vectoring with rear differential lock, carbon ceramic brakes, 911 Turbo-esque wheels, and a three-chamber air suspension system.
All of that performance is nothing particularly new, but it being in a more practical and much cooler package is. The Sport Turismo body style improves headroom for back seat passengers and increases storage space to 15 cubic feet or up to 46 cubic feet with the seats folded down. So it’s basically a wagon with 680 horsepower.
It’s cool, but you’ll pay dearly for it. Prices in Germany (including VAT) start at €188,592 (~$222,912).
Ford Super Duty Limited
Speaking of outrageously expensive things, Ford has a new range-topping F Series trim and it confirms that the trend of luxury trucks is here to stay. They pulled the wraps off the Super Duty Limited trim for the F-250, F-350, and F-450 4×4. Ford believes this trim sets new standards for high-end trucks. It’s a luxury vehicle that can tow over 30,000 pounds, which as Ford points out, is about the same as the Air Force’s F-35A weighs without fuel and armament.
Funny enough, like the F-35 JSF program, the price tag on the Super Duty Limited is also hard to believe. From F-250 Limited to F-450 Limited, MSRP is set between $80,835 and $87,100. An F-450 Limited with all the options goes for $94,455.
“What’s the point?”, Ford asks in their own press release. Todd Eckert, Ford Truck group marketing manager, says there are heavy duty truck customers who “need Super Duty-level capability and want true luxury”. Trends show truck buyers moving towards higher end offerings – in the Super Duty alone, more than half of all sales go to the Lariat, King Ranch, and Platinum trims. To meet this trend, they’re creating the most premium truck they can manage.
The Super Duty Limited can be distinguished from the rest by its twin-bar satin grille with chrome accents, quad-beam LED lights, and a satin-finished tailgate. Inside, it has custom Camelback two-tone leather seats, premium stitched leather-wrapped steering wheel, armrests, and instrument panel, Miko suede headliner, hand-finished dark ash wood trim, and of course special badging.
It also gets every bit of tech they could fit into it… which is to say it has a lot. It sports a class-exclusive 360-degree camera with trailer reverse guidance, the latest version of Sync, class-exclusive adaptive cruise control and adaptive steering, lane-keep assist, forward collision warning with brake assist, flat rear load floor with fold-up locking storage, full panoramic moonroof with retractable shade, heated and ventilated front seats, and heated rear seats. So yeah, basically everything.
The new official luxury car of Texas is available this winter with Ford’s 6.7-liter Power Stroke diesel V8. It’s available as an F-250, F-350, and F-450 with both single and dual rear wheel configurations.
Another day, another Nürburgring lap record – this time by the mental Porsche 911 GT2 RS. The previous lap record for production cars was held – controversially – by the Lamborghini Huracan Performante, but it fell to both factory driver Nick Tandy and test driver Lars Kern who each broke the record on their first attempt. After several runs, five of which were under 6:50, the fastest lap was ultimately set by Lars Kern with a 6:47.3. It’s roughly five seconds faster than the Lamborghini and ten seconds faster than Porsche’s own 918 Spyder. The 911 GT2 RS was factory fresh and was running with Michelin Pilot Cup 2 tires. You can see the lap in all its glory right here.
Subaru has teased an upcoming sports sedan concept, but it may also preview the new WRX. The car is called the Viziv Performance Concept and it shows large air intakes up front and extensive braking ventilation along the extended wheel arches. Less radical things like the redesigned front fascia and the greenhouse could very well be our best look yet at the new generation of WRX. The whole concept will be on display at the Tokyo Motor Show.
Dyson – as in the vacuum and airport bathroom hand dryer company – plans to launch an electric car by 2020. With that announcement came the commitment of $2.7 billion and a team of 400 to make it a reality. Work has already begun, but don’t expect a lot of teasers or leaks about the car’s details due to the growing competition within the EV space. Fortunately, that leaves us plenty of time to come up with some sucky jokes.
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 © 2017 Hooniverse/Greg Kachadurian]