Just Car Blog
|Hyundai new HB20X softroader||
Hyundai is launching a new line of cars exclusive to its Brazilian consumers called the HB (standing for “Hyundai Brasil”). This new Hyundai features a beefed-up exterior and more ground clearance, and it comes at the same time that Honda’s similar Fit Twist was also unveiled.
Looking like a jacked-up version of a US-spec Elantra GT, the HB20X has more of a soft-roader appearance than the base HB20 thanks to its taller ride height, tinted headlights and taillights, black plastic trim around the lower edge of the car and rear fascia, black decal on the side doors and the roof rack. The HB20X on display in São Paulo also gets a flashier interior with blue contrast stitching on steering wheel and seats, sport pedals and chrome accents.
Unfortunately, as many comparisons as we’d love to draw for this car to the Suzuki SX4 or Subaru XV Crosstrek, it does not appear that the HB20X is available with all-wheel drive. Power comes from Hyundai’s 128-horsepower, 1.6-liter Gamma I4.
|Nissan showing Extrem new crossover||
The Nissan Extrem concept is indeed a “high character” concept and, as the Japanese automaker says, “a radical concept car aimed squarely at young (and young-at-heart) car enthusiasts keen to make a statement.”
Wraparound glass and a “see-through” A-pillar reminiscent of Volvo’s Safety Car Concept (circa 2001) are interesting features that could enhance safety, while overlapping body panels “create a feeling of layered armored toughness.”
Such a vehicle could definitely compete with the similarly styled Veloster from Hyundai. But with its higher ground clearance and possible all-wheel-drive, the Extreme could offer a light-use off-road alternative. If anything, the Extrem is arguably most similar to Nissan’s own Juke, albeit with fewer doors.
The Extrem concept is built on Nissan’s V-platform, which is also used on its March supermini, albeit with larger dimensions. The Extrem is larger in every exterior dimension except wheelbase, as it retains the March’s 96.4-inch track.
According to Nissan, power “would come” from the company’s 1.6-liter, direct injection, turbocharged engine – an engine also seen in the Juke.
|Seven-passenger VW Taigun CUV||
Seven-passenger VW CUV last week, we also mentioned the possibility of a new sub-Tiguan crossover, and we may have gotten our first look at such a vehicle courtesy of this Volkswagen Taigun Concept that is debuting at the São Paulo motor show.
Although the Taigun Concept suggests that VW has all but given up on imbuing its new vehicles with comprehensible names, this new softroader also looks to balance practicality and fuel economy. With a slightly smaller footprint than the current Golf, the Taigun actually has more interior space (including more front headroom), but it’s the powertrain that could really make this B-segment CUV standout if it sees production. Using a small gasoline 1.0-liter direct-injected and turbocharged three-cylinder under the hood, the Taigun Concept still has pretty respectable small car numbers, generating 108 horsepower and 129 pound-feet of torque. However, the true beauty of this engine is that VW puts its fuel economy numbers at 4.7 liters per 100 kilometers – around 50 miles per gallon on the EU cycle.
Even the styling of the Taigun shows that VW’s current design language looks good on just about any size, with its boxy shape and short overhangs, but the automaker says that it is using Brazil’s emerging auto show to gauge interest for such a vehicle before making any decisions as to whether or not to put it into production.
|2013 Nissan Pathfinder Official Specs, Images Released||
Going the way of all of the other dinosaurs and mammoth frame-on-body SUVs, the all-new 2013 Nissan Pathfinder gets a new unibody construction, room for seven, better gas mileage, and softer looks.
As we reported months ago, the new 2013 Nissan Pathfinder is built on the same platform as the 2013 Infiniti JX. With it going up against the Ford Explorer, Honda Pilot, Jeep Grand Cherokee, among others in the same class, the new 2013 Nissan Pathfinder loses some of its ruggedness and off-road prowess. For broad target demographic, we think Nissan is thinking like we do – soccer moms and suburbia families don’t take their SUV off-road that much.
By changing the new 2013 Nissan Pathfinder’s platform, engineers were able to achieve better fuel consumption, 20 mpg city and 26 mpg on the front-wheel-drive model. The new Pathfinder shaves off about 500 pounds and gets Nissan’s cash-cow VQ-series 3.5-liter V6 engine, same setup as in the Infiniti JX. The V6 engine is good for 260 horsepower and enough grunt to tow up to 5,000 pounds.
Basically ‘shooting enthusiasts in the foot’, the new 2013 Pathfinder directs its power through a CVT transmission, also found in the Infiniti JX, to improve gas mileage. An all-wheel-drive system is available slightly diminishing fuel economy to 19 mpg city and 25 mpg highway but improving its off-road capability.
Although not as luxurious as the Infiniti JX, the 2013 Pathfinder will still get heated and cooled front seats, around-view monitor and Easy-Fill Tire Alert.
Official pricing has not been confirmed but we suspect a base price around $28,000 to make its way to the all-new 2013 Nissan Pathfinder’s sticker.
Hit up the full press release below for additional information on the new 2013 Nissan Pathfinder
- 500-pound weight reduction from 2012 Pathfinder, aerodynamic design, new powertrain delivers 30 percent fuel economy improvement over last generation
- Best-in-class city, highway and combined fuel economy of 20/26//22 MPG*
- Most interior passenger volume, front headroom and legroom in class**
- Highest standard towing capacity in class**
- On sale at Nissan dealers nationwide this fallNEW YORK/DETROIT (Aug. 3, 2012) – Nissan today unleashed the all-new 2013 Pathfinder SUV, a complete makeover featuring a sleek, aerodynamically styled exterior, a premium interior, class-exclusive user-friendly technology and a new unibody platform and advanced drivetrain that helps it achieve best-in-class fuel economy while maintaining class-lead towing and off-pavement capabilities.The all-new vehicle design sheds 500 pounds of mass compared to the outgoing model yet maintains the Pathfinder’s SUV-ruggedness while delivering up to 26 miles per gallon on the highway. With its blend of capability, including class-leading standard towing capacity of 5000 pounds, and modern amenities, such as a class-exclusive Around View™ Monitor, the 2013 Pathfinder is the next-generation SUV.”Unveiling our next-generation Pathfinder is a major follow-up to the introduction of the all-new Altima sedan,” said Al Castignetti, vice president and general manager, Nissan Division, Nissan North America, Inc. “With its bold new design, best-in-class fuel economy and family adventure capabilities, our dealers can’t wait to share this new model with customers in their showrooms.”
The 2013 Pathfinder’s fuel economy has improved more than 30 percent over that of the 2012 Pathfinder. Both the FWD and 4WD 2013 Pathfinder models lead their segments in fuel economy across the board.
City, highway and combined average fuel economy numbers are 20 (City), 26 (Highway) and 22 (Combined) mpg for the FWD version and 19 (City), 25 (Highway) and 21 (Combined) mpg for the 4WD version. This significant increase over both the outgoing model’s fuel economy as well as that of the competition was achieved primarily through a new, aerodynamic vehicle design, 500 pounds of weight reduction, reduced engine friction and the application of a class-exclusive, next generation Xtronic CVT®.
Also playing a significant role in the Pathfinder’s excellent fuel economy is the fact that it is now one of the lightest vehicles in its segment,with the FWD model tipping the scales at a mere 4149 pounds. Even the 4WD Pathfinder weighs only 4290 pounds.
Nissan teased the new Pathfinder earlier this year, showing a concept exterior design model in January. Today marks the first official look at the production model, which goes on sale nationwide this fall.
New Chassis Meets Consumer Shift
Truck-based SUV sales peaked in the mid-2000s and have declined steadily as consumer demands shifted to more refined, fuel efficient crossover SUVs. The 2013 Pathfinder is built with unibody construction, vastly reducing its weight by eliminating the fuel-penalizing mass of a traditional SUV’s truck-based frame. In addition to making the Pathfinder a lighter vehicle, the new unibody chassis design increases Pathfinder’s structural rigidity over the previous model. This improves ride and handling, while reducing overall noise, vibration and harshness, delivering an outstanding mix of responsiveness, refinement and ride comfort. The Pathfinder’s rigid platform is also key to maintaining the trailer-towing capability expected from an SUV – the vehicle has a standard towing capacity of 5000 pounds, which is the best standard towing capacity in the segment.**
“It’s no secret that the industry has shifted as gas prices have increased,” says Al Castignetti. “But while traditional SUV customers are looking for improved fuel economy, they still demand a vehicle that can do all the things they need, like carrying seven people, towing, and providing the surefootedness in all conditions of a four-wheel drive.”
Weight reduction is one of the key components in Nissan’s drive to improving vehicle performance across the board. The just-introduced all-new Nissan Altima also is the lightest vehicle in its class.
Pathfinder’s design conveys modernity while paying homage to the three generations of Pathfinders before it. The new unibody platform provided the designers an opportunity to create a more aerodynamic exterior without compromising headroom or cargo capacity. In fact, the new Pathfinder has more interior space than the previous model thanks to more efficient packaging.
Moving upscale in appearance, the new exterior styling presents a smart fusion of signature Nissan styling cues and dynamic strength. The look is adventure-ready with wheel-oriented muscular fenders and a strong, stable stance.
The upper body features an open cabin with a low beltline and thin A- and D-pillars, which flow smoothly into the rugged, durable-looking lower body. Pathfinder’s design incorporates front and rear spoilers, rear tire deflectors and rear suspension fairings to help achieve what is expected to be among the best aerodynamic performances in the segment. Other exterior details include a wide chrome grille and large aerodynamic headlights, recessed front windshield wipers, chrome door handles and large rear combination lights.
A panoramic dual-panel moonroof, with sliding opening front panel and fixed rear glass panel which extends over the 2nd and 3rd rows, combines with the large windows to create an open, airy interior environment.
“With its new aerodynamic shape, the styling is a major step forward in the evolution of the SUV – retaining its people and cargo hauling utility without looking quite so utilitarian,” said Castignetti. “It’s fitting that a vehicle that tackles adventures in a whole new way also now looks the part.”
Pathfinder’s all-new interior design features versatile and comfortable seating as well as premium materials and advanced technology. The vehicle seats seven passengers comfortably, and is best-in-class in terms of front headroom, front leg room and overall passenger volume. Additionally, Pathfinder is now the only vehicle in the segment with a 3rd row seat recline.
The new Advanced Drive-Assist™ Display, located in the center of the instrument display between the tachometer and speedometer, features a 4-inch color display that is customizable, easy-to-use and integrates key information right in front of the driver. A separate touch-screen monitor, mounted in the middle of the instrument panel, provides intuitive interaction and control of the available navigation system and other vehicle systems and settings.
Technology and Innovation
The all-new Pathfinder also features EZ Flex Seating System™ with LATCH AND GLIDE™. LATCH AND GLIDE™ is an industry first 2nd row tip-up seat for use with a child safety seat, which also provides easy access to the 3rd row while keeping the child seat securely fastened. The 2nd row also features a 60/40 split-fold seating with a segment best 5.5 inches of seat travel. Class-exclusive features include Easy Fill Tire Alert and the segment-first availability of an Around View™ Monitor.
Other available amenities include leather-appointed seating, heated steering wheel, heated and cooled front seats, programmable Nissan Intelligent Key®, Nissan Navigation System, Bluetooth® Hands-free Phone System, 13-speaker Bose® Premium Audio system, Satellite Radio (SiriusXM subscription required, sold separately), Dual-Zone Climate Control, RearView Monitor, remote engine start and tri-zone entertainment system.
All 2013 Pathfinders come equipped with an advanced 260-horsepower 3.5-liter DOHC V6 engine matched with a next-generation Xtronic CVT® (Continuously Variable Transmission). It is also the only vehicle in class with selectable 2WD, Auto or 4WD modes for the available intuitive ALL-MODE 4×4-i system. The 2013 Nissan Pathfinder will be offered in 4×4 and 4×2 drive configurations and in four models – S, SV, SL and Platinum.
Pricing and Additional Details
Pricing on all models will be announced closer to the fall on-sale date. Additional information is available at https://www.facebook.com/nissanpathfinder and https://twitter.com/nissanpathfindr.
Pathfinder is assembled at Nissan’s Smyrna assembly plant in Smyrna, Tennessee. The 3.5-liter V-6 engine is assembled at the company’s Decherd, Tennessee powertrain plant.
|Kia Sportage SX Turbo Official||
The Kia Sportage has announced its new SX Turbo variant. The new model sports a revised grille and modified side skirts. This high performance model has got a dual exhaust system and rides on unique 18-inch alloy wheels. However, the interior has not been subjected to big changes, though it includes new aluminum door sills and a revised instrument cluster.
The engine option includes a turbocharged 2.0-liter GDI engine with an output of 256 hp (191 kW / 260 PS) and 264 lb-ft (358 Nm) of torque. It is mated exclusively to a six-speed automatic transmission. The vehicle comes equipped with a sport-tuned suspension that features stiffer shocks and revised struts.
The Sportage SX will hit the US showrooms later this month. The crossover sports a starting price of $25,795.
|Audi Q5 Hybrid Gets an Official Unveiling||
Audi has officially unveiled the Q5 Hybrid at the Geneva motor show. The vehicle was announced last year. The Audi Q5 Hybrid comes in an altogether exceptional form.
It has got exclusive 19-inch alloy wheels as well as chrome exhaust pipes. The vehicle features plenty of hybrid badging as well.
To talk about the power source, the auto features a 155 kW (211 PS / 208 hp) 2.0-liter TFSI petrol engine and a 33 kW (45 PS / 44 hp) electric motor.
The engine churns out a combined output of 180 kW (245 PS / 241 hp) and 480 Nm (354 lb-ft) of torque. The Q5 Hybrid takes 7.1 seconds to accelerate from 0-100 km/h. It boasts of a top speed of 222 km/h (138 mph).
Above all, the unparalleled vehicle exhibits average fuel consumption of less than 6.9 L/100km (33.60 US mpg) and CO2 emissions of 159 g/km.
It is perhaps one of the most fuel-efficient crossovers. The vehicle also makes the lightest hybrid SUV in the world.
|BMW X1 US Launch Delayed||
The upcoming X1 crossover of BMW has delayed its U.S launch by almost one year. BMW spokesman Tom Plucinsky said the X1 won’t be coming “until fall of 2011 at the absolute earliest.” The stated reason is that the Leipzig, Germany plant can barely keep up to the extreme demand for the vehicle in the European Markets. Hence the plant is struggling to meet its European orders. Amidst this, US launch is not possible at the moment.
Despite the delay in U.S markets, Canada will get the X1 early this year as scheduled, due to their smaller market size. Moreover, customers over there have more inclination towards compact vehicles.
The small crossover BMW X1 enjoys wide popularity and demand in Europe. The auto recently overtook the Audi Q5 to become Europe’s top selling premium SUV.
|Kia KV7 Concept Preview Sketch Revealed||
The Kia KV7 concept is all geared up for Detroit, and we have been exposed to a preview sketch of the crossover vehicle. The KV7 concept will be seen at the Detroit Auto Show that gets underway next month.
From what we see on the preview sketch, the car s expected to hit production with features such as swivel seating, and wood panel flooring.
Further, Kia is also likely to bring about gull wing opening rear doors, and that means the car maker will do way with the center-pillarless opening on the passenger side. However, the center pillar on the drivers side will stay.
The sketch reveals a shape resembling an SUV. Further, it also bears a similarities with the original concept designs as had been earlier shown for models such as Soul, Sportage and Sorento
Look forward to the debut of the Kia KV7 crossover concept at the North American International Auto Show on January 10.
|Chevrolet Aveo-based Crossover in the Works; Roll Out Likely in 2012||
Chevrolet fans will be pleased to hear that the company is developing a new crossover that is reportedly based on the new redesigned Aveo. What’s more, they may not have to wait too long, since the vehicle might come out as early as 2012.
The new crossover will be placed on an elongated Aveo platform, and will have as standard the front wheel drive, and an optional all-wheel drive. Although the style of the vehicle will be similar to the Chevrolet vehicles that have come out lately, there will be more attention paid to the interiors.
The dual cockpit design is likely to be in place, and Opel’s switchgear will be incorporated as will a new high tech digital display.
An Opel variant will be on offer, but company sources have confirmed that there will not be any badges on any of these.
|Saab 9-4X Crossover Spied; Car Heads for LA Show||
Pictures of the Saab 9-4X crossover have appeared online, in the form of spy images. The car, scheduled to make its debut at the Los Angeles Auto Show in November, will be based on the same underpinnings as the Chevrolet Equinox GMC Terrain and the Cadillac SRX, which are built on GM’s Theta platform with all-wheel-drive.
It is expected that the car will be coming with a 2.8-liter turbocharged V6 engine. But there are some who suggest the possibility of the 2.0-liter turbo four which is seen in the new 9-5 (already out on the road). Both engines will most likely be mated to a six-speed automatic transmission.
There are also rumors that the tail lamps might look different when the production model comes out. Just wait until the car is unveiled at the auto show and you will know a lot more about it.