Auto Car News and Review

Featured: Happy Thanksgiving! Autoblog is thankful for… [w/videos]

November 28th, 2014 0 Comments




The inimitable David E. Davis, Jr., once described himself as “…the luckiest guy in the world; a car enthusiast and I live in car-enthusiast heaven.”



I think about that line a lot, but it seems ever-more poignant around this time of year, when families are gathered, stories are told and words of thanks are offered up more readily than on your average Thursday.



And even though, as a group, we wear a good deal fewer cravats than DED usually did, we can’t help but feel as though we belong to that same Luckiest Guy group ourselves. Every man, woman and child of us.



So, keeping up with tradition, we offer you the 2014 version of our Thanksgiving List. Take a break from the carbo-loading, have a read, and then tell us which motoring wonders you’re thankful for this year, in Comments.

Teased: Mercedes confirms first AMG Sport models for Detroit

November 27th, 2014 0 Comments
Mercedes AMG Sport teaser



If you’re looking for a sportier Mercedes-Benz but can’t quite make the leap to a full-on AMG model, we’ve got some good news for you: the German automaker is about to expand its performance portfolio with a more accessible AMG Sport range.



Set to bridge the gap between a standard Mercedes fitted with an AMG Sports package and a complete AMG performance variant, models in the the new AMG Sport line will feature upgraded engines, suspensions and brakes. They’ll even have “all-wheel drive as standard in selected markets” (almost certain to include ours).



Affalterbach has confirmed that the first two AMG Sport models will debut at the upcoming Detroit Auto Show in January. Though it’s not saying which models will hit the stage, the teaser image above suggests that one of them will be the new MLC crossover coupe (or whatever it’ll be called under the new nomenclature), while the other is almost certain to be the new C450 AMG Sport sedan.



The launch of the AMG Sport line is part of the brand’s effort to double its 2013 sales figures by 2017 to top over 40,000 units per year globally. With the AMG Sport line joining the standard AMG and AMG S models, the sub-brand is considerably expanding its product portfolio to cater to more customers and budgets, and will give Mercedes a vehicle range to challenge Audi S models and the BMW M Performance range.

Report: Mini phasing out Coupe, Roadster next year

November 27th, 2014 0 Comments
2012 Mini Cooper Coupe



With its previous generation, Mini went for a maximalist strategy, expanding its lineup to include seven derivatives. But with the new generation, BMW’s retro Anglo-Saxon brand is shifting gears to a “superhero strategy” focusing on core models with volume sales potential rather than small niches.



That, according to the latest reports, will spell the end of the Coupe and Roadster models introduced in the outgoing generation. Speaking with AutoGuide at the LA Auto Show last week, Mini USA product planning chief Patrick McKenna confirmed that both the two-seat models “will actually go out of production next year” and that “they’ve run their life cycle.”



Though we’ve yet to receive word on the future of the Paceman, we wouldn’t hold our breath for its long-term prospects either. Under the new strategy, Mini is expected to focus more on models like the base Hardtop (now available with three or five doors) and the Countryman – which, between the two of them, account for roughly 75 percent of Mini sales, the other models slicing up the remaining quarter of the pie.



Will you miss them? Will these short-lived Minis become future collectibles, or will they be soon forgotten? Have your say in Comments.