Wednesday, July 10, 2019

2020 BMW 840i Starts at $91,795 In September

The 2020 BMW 840i and 840i xDrive Gran Coupes are powered by a 335 horsepower 3.0 liter inline 6-cylinder Turbo engine that weighs 13 lbs less than its predecessor that's mated to a eight-speed Steptronic Sport transmission and starts at $88,895 (including $995 destination charge) for the new 2020 840i Coupe, $91,795 for the 840i xDrive Coupe. The 840i Convertible starts at $98,395 and the 840i xDrive Convertible at $101,295. The BMW Live Cockpit Professional in the 2020 BMW 8 Series combines the latest-generation of the iDrive, featuring a high-resolution digital 12.3” instrument cluster display behind the steering wheel and a 10.25” center display diagonally across. Production for all 2020 8 Series models begins this month with market launch in September.

Bentley EXP 100 GT - The Future

Bentley EXP 100 GT has a battery electric powertrain for a predicted 434 mile range. The battery system will power four motors that offer a 0-60 mph time of less than 2.5 second to a top speed of 186 mph. Biometrics are embedded throughout the Bentley EXP 100 GT to track eye and head movements, even blood pressure.

2020 Buick Enclave Starts At $41,195 Later This Summer

The 2020 Buick Enclave seven-passenger SUV, powered by a 310 horsepower 3.6L V-6 engine, starts at $41,195 (including destination freight charge, excluding tax, title, license and dealer fees) and will arrive in dealerships later this summer.  A new 8-inch diagonal touchscreen comes standard on all trim levels with available new HD Rear Vision Camera and HD Surround Vision systems and a new, four-way power lumbar seat adjuster with a driver and front passenger massage feature that is standard on the Premium and Avenir models.

MINI Cooper SE - Purely Electric

The new MINI Cooper SE purely electric premium small car, based on the MINI 2-door hardtop, is powered by a 181 horsepower lithium-ion battery that enables a range of 146 to 167 miles though US EPA estimated range figures not yet available. The electric model is about 319 pounds heavier than the MINI Cooper S 2 door hardtop with Steptronic transmission. The new MINI Cooper SE is available in the US with three trim levels; Signature, Signature Plus, and Iconic, which each include a specific combination of exterior finish, light alloy wheels, seat upholstery and interior fittings. The purely electrically powered MINI accelerates from zero to 62 mph in 7.3 seconds; its top speed is limited to 93.2 mph.

Mercedes-AMG CLA 45 Coming By Yearend

The new Mercedes-AMG CLA 45 compact sports car is powered by a newly developed 382 horsepower four-cylinder 2.0-liter engine mated to the new AMG SPEEDSHIFT DCT-8G dual-clutch transmission with eight gears. Active, fully variable AMG Performance 4MATIC+ all-wheel drive distributes the power to the rear axle on a wheel- selective basis using AMG TORQUE CONTROL. The 2020 Mercedes-AMG CLA 45 will go on sale in the U.S. by the end of the year.

All-New 2020 BMW X6 Sports Activity Coupe Coming In November

The new 2020 BMW X6 Sports Activity Coupe, the third generation X6, offers a 335 horsepower 3.0-liter TwinPower Turbo inline 6-cylinder engine mated an  eight-speed Sport Steptronic transmission in the sDrive40i and xDrive40i and 523 horsepower 4.4-liter eight-cylinder TwinPower turbocharged engine in the M50i versions. MSRP pricing starts at $65,295 (including $995 destination charge) for the new 2020 X6 sDrive40i, $67,595 for the X6 xDrive40i and $86,645 for the X6 M50i. An available factory trailer package is rated for up to 7,200 lbs towing. The X6 is longer in overall length by an inch, wheelbase  by 1.6 inches and is 0.6 inches wider, while height has been reduced by 0.7 inches. The standard Active Driving Assistant on the new BMW X6 includes Blind Spot Detection, Lane Departure Warning, Rear Collision Warning, Frontal Collision Warning and Pedestrian Warning with City Collision Mitigation (which now also alerts the driver if cyclists are detected) Cross Traffic Alert Rear, and Speed Limit Information. Production begins in August with market launch in November.

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Lee Iacocca, A Car Legend, Passes Away At 94

Lee Iacocca, passes away at 94. Iacocca worked his way up at Ford Motor Company, creating the Mustang, becoming President in 1970, leaving Ford in 1978, then joining Chrysler Corporation as President in 1979 and a year later adding the title of Chairman, reviving the company twice, until his retirement in 1992. A car legend whose name you could always remember how to spell - I Am Chairman Of Chrysler Corporation America.

Click here to view this 1992 KWHY-TV The Business Channel interview which ranks among the top of the thousands I conducted over 40 years.

Sunday, June 30, 2019

Tesla Model 3 - Stunning - Says An Owner of 2

Stunning - the one word that describes the Tesla Model 3 all-electric sedan - according to an owner of two 2018 long range rear-motor Model 3s. This Tesla owner who previously owned numerous luxury vehicles and raced high performance cars, can't stop raving about his Model 3 that cost him around $56,000 (including California tax and registration fees and after receiving the Federal tax incentive). Extras included the $2,000 Red Multi-Coat paint and the $6,000 Autopilot and Full Self-Driving features which Tesla will later upgrade to a 100 times more powerful computer with regular software updates. The over-the-internet upgrades occur at least once a month, one has already boosted range and power by 5 percent.

Autopilot enables your car to steer, accelerate and brake automatically for other vehicles and pedestrians within its lane, while Full Self-Driving is automatic driving from highway on-ramp to off-ramp including interchanges and overtaking slower cars, automatic lane changes while driving on the highway, Autopark in both parallel and perpendicular spaces, and, believe or not, Summon where your parked car will come find you anywhere in a parking lot, currently to be upgraded at no cost.

Stunning - the relaxation of highway driving with the aforementioned features and the automatic stop-and-go in traffic, the cabin's quietness, clear display screen, large trunk, and, of course, the all-glass roof which especially benefits rear seat passengers adding immense visual space to the generous interior legroom. He feels much more refreshed after long trips due to the absence of typical vehicle vibration and engine noise.

Registering about 11,000 miles since buying his red Model 3 in November, he's very satisfied averaging about 260 miles per charge which is about 80 percent of the posted 325 miles due to driving style and terrain. The batteries charge from empty to full overnight on a home charger or 30 minutes for $20 at a commercial charging station.

The only cautionary words from this very happy Tesla owner is that there's no AM radio, possibly because of electric motor interference, and the Model 3 is wider that you expect, something I found out from scuffing the curb with the right rear wheel while turning a corner. The 41 PSI tire pressure creates a road feel that can bother some passengers.

(The standard range Tesla Model 3 gets an estimated 220 miles and the price starts at $35,000.)

Saturday, June 29, 2019

2020 Chrysler Pacifica and Pacifica Hybrid

The 2020 Chrysler Pacifica minivan, available in Touring, Touring L, Touring L Plus and Limited trim, is powered by a 287 horsepower 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 gasoline engine mated to the TorqueFlite nine-speed automatic transmission. The 2020 Pacifica Hybrid, with a choice of Touring, Touring L and Limited packages, delivers more than 80 miles per gallon equivalent (MPGe) in electric-only mode, has an all-electric range of more than 30 miles and a total range of more than 500 miles from a dual-motor eFlite electrically variable transmission paired with a specially modified version of the 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 gasoline engine. More than 100 standard and available safety and security features, include 360-degree Surround View Camera, ParkSense Parallel/Perpendicular Park Assist, Adaptive Cruise Control with Stop and Go and Forward Collision Warning-Plus. Other features include the Uconnect 4 systems with a standard 7-inch or available 8.4-inch touchscreen, a Uconnect Theater entertainment system with two 10-inch seatback touchscreens and standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and available 4G Wi-Fi.

2020 Chrysler Voyager Minivan

2020 Chrysler Voyager minivan, with standard seven-passenger seating and 3.5-inch digital information display, replaces the Pacifica L and LX models, and is powered by a 287 horsepower Pentastar V-6 gasoline engine mated to a TorqueFlite nine-speed automatic transmission. Voyager’s available SafetyTec Group includes ParkSense rear park assist with stop, Blind-spot Monitoring and Rear Cross Path detection. Through six generations of the vehicle, the company has sold more than 14.6 million minivans globally since 1983.

2020 F-Series Super Duty Tremor Off-Road Package Coming Later This Year

The 2020 F-Series Super Duty Tremor Off-Road Package, available for XLT, Lariat, King Ranch and Platinum F-250 and F-350 Super Duty, is powered by an all-new 7.3-liter gas V8 or third-generation 6.7-liter Power Stroke® diesel and can be specified for 4x4 single-rear-wheel SuperCrew trucks with a 6.75-foot box. Unique to Tremor is a new rock-crawl mode, which is optimized to operate in 4x4 low and is enabled by the standard TorqShift® 10-speed automatic transmission. Tremor trucks equipped with the 7.3-liter gas engine have a 53:1 crawl ratio while those equipped with the 6.7- liter diesel engine have a 44:1 crawl ratio. Super Duty gets Trail Control™ which functions in any mode like cruise control for off-road driving. The Tremor Off-Road Package will be available when the 2020 Super Duty launches later this year.

Bentley Continental GT Convertible Number 1 Edition by Mulliner

The Bentley Continental GT Convertible Number 1 Edition by Mulliner, featuring 18 carat gold plated fender badging, celebrates Bentley’s 100th year on July 10th. The Bentley Continental GT Convertible Number 1 Edition by Mulliner, powered by a 6.0-liter twin-turbocharged W12 TSI engine mated to a dual-clutch eight-speed transmission, is based on the Continental GT Convertible, limited to a handcrafted production of 100. Available in either Dragon Red II or Beluga, and with a Claret or Beluga folding hood, the Limited Edition is equipped with a Centenary Pack, Bentley Black Line Specification and Carbon Body Kit, rounded off by the painted Number 1 front grille.

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

2020 BMW 8 Series Gran Coupes Start At $85,895 In September

The new 2020 BMW 8 Series Gran Coupes are 9.0 inches longer, 1.2 inches wider, 2.2 inches taller than the 8 Series Coupe with a 7.9 inch longer wheelbase. The 840i and 840i xDrive are powered by a 335 horsepower 3.0 liter 6-cylinder engine weighing 13 lbs less than its predecessor and mated to an eight-speed Steptronic Sport transmission. Prices start at $85,895 (including $995 destination charge) for the new 2020 840i Gran Coupe and $88,795 for the 840i xDrive Gran Coupe. The BMW M850i xDrive Gran Coupe, which starts at $109,895, is powered by a 523 horsepower BMW TwinPower 4.4-liter eight-cylinder Turbo engine. Standard equipment includes Frontal Collision Warning with City Collision Mitigation. Production begins next month with a September market launch.

Saturday, June 15, 2019

2020 Hyundai Palisade Starts At $32,595 Soon

The 2020 Hyundai Palisade powered by 3.8L V6 GDI engine mated to an 8-Speed Automatic SHIFTRONIC® transmission starts at $32,595 (including $1,045 in freight charges) and will be available at U.S. dealerships soon.

All-New Bentley Flying Spur Deliveries Start Early Next Year

The all-new Bentley Flying Spur, recreated from the ground up on a new platform, is powered by a 626 horsepower 6.0-liter, twin-turbocharged W12 configured 12-cylinder engine mated to a dual-clutch eight-speed transmission with 0-60 mph time of 3.7 seconds to a top speed of 207 mph. New features include 22-inch wheel designs, electronic all-wheel steering, three-chamber air springs which contain 60 percent more air volume compared to the previous model, and all-new seats featuring a twin-flute design including heating, ventilation, multi-mode massage, adjustable bolsters and top tilt. Optional full size, glass-to-glass panoramic sunroof is available. Driver Assistance Systems available, include Traffic Assist, City Assist and Blind Spot Warning. Night Vision and Head Up Display and a Top View Camera complemented by reverse traffic warning and self-parking features. For sound, there's a Naim 2,200W, 19-speaker system with Active Bass Transducers built into the front seats, available with eight sound modes. The new Flying Spur is available to order this Fall and customer deliveries will begin in early 2020.

2020 Mercedes-Benz GLB Coming By Year End

The all-new 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLB compact vehicle is powered by a 221 horsepower two-liter four-cylinder gas M 260 engine in the GLB 250 and offers an optional third row with two additional seats. The GLB can look up to 1,641 feet ahead and can drive partially autonomously in certain situations. The GLB can be equipped with the permanent all-wheel drive system 4MATIC, with variable torque distribution. The all-new 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLB will go on sale in the U.S. by the end of the year.

2020 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel

The 2020 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel is powered by an all-new third-generation 260 horsepower 3.0-liter V-6 EcoDiesel produced at the FCA Cento facility in Ferrara, Italy and has a 480 lb.-ft. torque rating and 12,560 pound towing capacity.

2020 Mercedes-Benz GLS 450 4MATIC Starts At $76,195 By Year End

The all-new 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLS 450 4MATIC, seats up to 7 passengers and powered by a 362 horsepower 3.0L Inline-6 turbo engine with EQ Boost starts at $76,195 (including $995 destination and delivery) and will be available in U.S. dealerships by the end of the year. Pricing for the new GLS 580 will be announced at a later date.

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

2020 BMW M8 Coupe and Convertible Coming Soon

The 2020 BMW M8 Coupe and Convertible, the new top performance models in the M brand’s lineup, are powered by a 600 horsepower 4.4 liter S63 M TwinPower Turbo V8 engine mated to an eight-speed M Steptronic transmission which transfers the BMW M8’s power to the M xDrive all-wheel drive system. The Competition models feature unique tuning which not only produces more horsepower at 617 but also increases the band at which maximum torque is produced by 160 rpm. Pricing for the new 2020 M8 Coupe is $133,995 (including $995 destination charge) and $146,995 for the M8 Competition Coupe. The 2020 M8 Convertible MSRP is $143,495 and $156,495 for the M8 Competition Convertible. Production begins next month.

2020 Chevrolet Silverado 3.0L Duramax Diesel

The all-new 2020 Chevrolet Silverado 3.0L Duramax diesel, available on LT, RST, LTZ and High Country models, is powered by a 277 horsepower inline-six turbo-diesel engine paired with GM’s 10L80 10-speed automatic transmission. It is priced identically to the 6.2L V-8 as a $2,495 premium over a 5.3L V-8 model or $3,890 over a 2.7L Turbo model.

2020 Cadillac CT4-V and CT5-V Coming Early Next Year

2020 Cadillac CT4-V powered by a 320 horsepower 2.7L Turbo engine featuring a three-step sliding camshaft that helps optimize performance at all speeds is mated to a 10-speed automatic transmission while the CT5-V boasts a 355 horsepower 3.0L Twin Turbo V-6 engine, which uses low-inertia turbochargers to enhance power production across the rpm band also has a 10-speed automatic transmission. Both have Standard RWD and available AWD and V-Series performance chassis with Magnetic Ride Control 4.0. Brembo front brakes with eBoost electronic assist and a limited-slip rear differential on CT4-V and electronic limited-slip differential on CT5-V. The CT4-V and CT5-V go on sale early in the 2020 calendar year. (The CT6-V is also pictured above).

2020 Buick Encore GX Coming Early Next Year

2020 Buick Encore GX will be positioned between the smaller Encore and the larger Envision and Enclave models when it arrives in early 2020, giving Buick four SUVs across the small, compact and midsize segments. The Encore GX’s new standard safety and driver assistance features will include Front Pedestrian Braking, Automatic Emergency Braking, Forward Collision Alert and Lane Keep Assist with Lane Departure Warning. It will also offer the Enclave’s innovative Rear Camera Mirror, which provides a wide, less obstructed rear view while parking and driving, and High Definition Surround Vision camera system.