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To Overtake BMW, Audi Plans A $17 Billion Investment 31
Dec
Posted by Kurt Ernst in audi, Automotive, Automotive Industry, BMW, Kurt, Mercedes Benz on 12 31st, 2012

At a time when most luxury automakers are paring back spending in case the European economic crisis worsens, or in case the U.S. drops back into recession, Audi has its sights locked on its main German rival BMW. To surpass BMW atop the luxury pyramid, Audi knows it needs to invest in new vehicle development, factory expansion and targeted marketing. Success comes at a price, and for Audi that price is $17 billion, to be spent over the next four years.

As The San Francisco Chronicle (via Autoblog) explains, nearly $14 billion of that investment will go towards vehicle development and factory expansion, including the construction of a new plant in Mexico to serve the North American market. Research and development spending will concentrate on lightweight construction (likely via the extensive use of aluminum) and even supplemental electric power.

By the end of this decade, Audi is projecting annual global sales of two million vehicles, which should be sufficient to overtake BMW. While BMW will also see sales increase, the smaller automaker is incapable of matching the investment that the Volkswagen Group is willing to spend on Audi’s growth. Don’t expect Mercedes-Benz to sit idle as rivals steal market share, either; it’s planning on countering Audi’s advances with a new product blitz aimed at first time luxury buyers.

Which automaker will ultimately come out on top is academic, since the real winners will be the consumers who benefit from the increased competition between the brands.



Porsche Demonstrates The Real World Benefits Of The 911 Carrera 4 31
Dec
Posted by Kurt Ernst in 2013 Porsche 911 Carrera 4, 2013 Porsche 911 Carrera 4 S, Automotive, Kurt, porsche, video on 12 31st, 2012

The temperature is well below freezing, and a thick coat of frost covers the ground. If you’re a track day junkie, you realize your favorite circuit will be dotted with patches of unforgiving black ice, and that no amount of spirited driving is going to put enough heat in your tires to make them stick well. Is it time to hunker down and await the arrival of spring?

Not according to Porsche, which is why it’s been building all-wheel-drive 911 Carrera 4 models since 1989. To demonstrate how good the car is when the weather turns bad, Porsche filmed a recent winter test drive event at Britain’s Silverstone circuit. As expected, the AWD Carrera 4 models performed flawlessly, impressing owners of rear-drive 911 models with their handling prowess and tenacious grip.

Even a flooded skid pad and cold tires failed to upset the Carrera 4, as long as the driver used some judgement in applying throttle, brakes and steering. We don’t advise you probe the handling limits of any car on wet or icy roads, but it’s good to know that the Porsche 911 Carrera 4 extends the driving season for those of us wh can never get enough time behind the wheel.



Seven-passenger VW Taigun CUV 31
Dec
Posted by admin in Concept Cars, crossover, Design/Style, Misc. Auto Shows, Passenger Cars, South America, Volkswagen, VOLKSWAGEN, VW, World Cars on 12 31st, 2012

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.

VW shows Taigun small CUV

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.



Video: Infiniti Teases New Q50 as G37 Sedan Successor 28
Dec
Posted by Darryl in Automotive, Infiniti, Infiniti G37, infiniti q50, video on 12 28th, 2012

After Infiniti’s announcement on changing their complete line of vehicle’s names, consumers who have paid attention have been in a disarray. Despite the overhaul of vehicle name plates, Infiniti seems to have planned some amazing vehicles to come down the pipeline starting with the new Q50 Sedan -the successor to the G37 Sedan.

To kick things off before the official reveal at the upcoming Detroit Auto Show next month, Infiniti has shared a teaser of their new Q50. From the looks of the headlight in the teaser, the new Q50 will utilize the new design language captured from the Infiniti Essence Concept.

Enjoy the teaser video below and be sure to chime in on the comments with your thoughts.



2013 Hyundai Elantra GT Hatchback Review & Test Drive 28
Dec
Posted by Malcolm Hogan in 2013 Hyundai Elantra GT, Automotive, featured, Hyundai, Hyundai Elantra, Test Drives on 12 28th, 2012

For the 2013 model year, Hyundai expands on its Elantra lineup with a GT hatchback model alongside of a new Coupe to build upon the Elantra sedan’s astounding recognition in holding the 2012 North American Car of the Year crown. The all-new 2013 Elantra GT hatchback steps up the compact car game to give consumers the most bang for their buck in a versatile, sporty and economical package.

The new 2013 Hyundai Elantra GT makes use of the additional ‘hatchback’ and cargo space without diminishing the rewarded styling attributes and economical drivetrain of the Elantra sedan. The new Elantra GT, adding even more entertainment value to the equation, utilizes the same 1.8-liter 148 horsepower and 131 ft-lbs. of torque 4-cylinder engine. Enthusiasts will be pleased to know that the Elantra GT comes standard with a 6-speed manual transmission, but can be optioned with a quick-shifting 6-speed automatic.

Driving characteristics of the Elantra GT are surprisingly nimble for a vehicle having a conservative horsepower figure on paper. The sporty handling characteristics of my loaded up Elantra GT with the Style and Tech packages, are somewhat evocative of much more powerful hatchbacks targeting a large enthusiast base. In a way, the new Elantra GT hatchback drives and handles like it could easily adapt to a much more powerful drivetrain without breaking a sweat. Though, you will suffer the wrath of Mr. Understeer should you find yourself crossing that fine line of being an outright hoon with the Elantra GT hatchback.

Sharing virtually the same engine and transmission as the Elantra sedan and coupe, with the same gear ratios, the 2013 Elantra GT has a sportier attitude and feels more agile when pushed near its lateral limits. I wouldn’t go as far as to say the Elantra GT is a pocket-rocket or in anyway poised for an autocross competition, but it has certainly added some ‘virtual’ enthusiasm to the Elantra line.

Hyundai’s choice for using the same powertrain throughout the Elantra line of new vehicles becomes crystal clear in knowing that you get a respectable amount of power output -yet you can consistently get well-over 30 mpg around town. During my time in the new 2013 Hyundai Elantra GT hatchback I saw a steady 36 mpg on the highway and about 27 mpg in town. The EPA estimates for the new Elantra GT are 26 mpg city and 37 mpg highway.

Surprisingly enough, being that the Elantra Sedan has a spacious interior almost reaching that of a mid-sized sedan, the Elantra GT scales things down a bit on the outside with a shortened wheelbase and over-all vehicle length. Visually, the Elantra GT does not appear to be much smaller than the Elantra sedan, but has, in fact, about 9 inches less in vehicle length and two inches shorter wheelbase. Those dimensions stand without compromising much seating area, too.

Front heated seats, heated mirrors, a/c cooling in the glove box, fog lights, USB connectivity, aux input, 16-inch aluminum wheels, driver-selectable steering modes (comfort, normal, sport) and Hyundai’s Blue Link telematics are just some of the highlighted standard features included on the new Elantra GT. Further setting the new Elantra GT apart from its mainstream competition is up to 51 cubic feet of available cargo space when the rear seats are folded down.

Seats in the new Elantra GT hatchback are comparable to the Elantra sedan providing just enough bolstering to keep you planted and comfortable enough for long hauls.

Interior space is not diminished despite shorter exterior dimensions in the Elantra GT when compared to the sedan. Moreover, ride quality is still good considering the use of new sachs dampers. Adding a performance-oriented Style package takes the suspension to a new level with increased spring rates giving the Elantra GT a sporty ride coupled with larger 17-inch wheels. My 2013 Hyundai Elantra GT test vehicle came equipped with the Style package and Tech package adding leather seats, leather-wrapped steering wheel, double-panel sunroof, power driver’s seat, aluminum pedals, auto up-down driver’s window control, navigation system, rearview camera (hidden behind a motorized Hyundai logo on the rear hatch), auto headlights, auto climate control and keyless/proximity key with push-button start.

Versatility is an expected uncompromised trait of the traditional hatchback and the new Elantra GT does not disappoint in this aspect. Interior seating area in the Elantra GT hatchback is about the same as the sedan with the major interior volume difference being in the cargo space. The Elantra GT comes with 60/40 split rear seatbacks to fold down for the need to expand on cargo room in the rear. The Elantra GT, with a slightly smaller wheelbase and length dimensions, manages to serve up more cargo area than its competition. There is even a separate, but shallow, storage bin under the cargo area floor.

Hyundai continues to impress not just with a nameplate that has received new-found recognition in America, but with new extensions of current products that tend to exceed expectations. The all-new 2013 Hyundai Elantra GT hatchback is no exception to exceeding my expectations in an affordable 5-door hatchback considering it blends well into the DNA of light-hearted enthusiasts. The new 2013 Hyundai Elantra GT hatchback, with a starting price of $18,395 for a 6-speed manual equipped vehicle, is an eagerly awaiting prize for consumers seeking exceptional style, sportiness and value wrapped up in a versatile and well-equipped package.

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Copyright: 2012 AutomotiveAddicts.com

SPECIFICATIONS

  • Price: Base Elantra GT $18,395 As-Tested $
  • Engine: 1.8-liter 4cyl 148hp/131 ft-lbs torque
  • Drive: FWD
  • Wheelbase: 104.3in.
  • Total length: 169.3in.
  • Total width: 70.1in.
  • Total height: 57.9in.
  • Track: f/r-61/61.5in.
  • Turning circle: 34.8ft.
  • Headroom: f/r-40.1/37.9in.
  • Legroom: f/r-42.0/34.6in.
  • Fuel tank: 12.8 gallons
  • EPA fuel economy: 27 mpg city/ 30 mpg highway (6-speed automatic transmission)
  • 0-60mph: 9.5 seconds
  • EPA cargo volume: 23.0cu.ft. / Max w/ rear seats folded: 51.0 cu.ft.
  • Curb weight: 2,745lbs.


Bertone Nuccio Concept 28
Dec
Posted by admin in Bertone, china, Concept Cars, Coupe, Geneva Motor Show, Passenger Cars, Performance, Specialty, Sport Cars, supercars, World Cars on 12 28th, 2012

The Nuccio concept, showed off by Bertone as a rolling model at the Geneva Motor Show and then as a road-ready car at the Beijing Motor Show is in talks to be sold. An update on the Lancia Stratos Zero concept from the seventies and powered by a 4.3-liter Ferrari V8 with 480 horsepower, the Nuccio was a 15,000-hour exercise in what the company’s historical language could look like today.

Bertone Nuccio Concept

That styling has changed a little from the Geneva concept, befitting its new-found usability. The single, narrow LED headlight has been replaced by two more conventional units, and the windscreen is now a more realistic size. The larger side mirrors are also more usable.

Named after the late Giuseppe “Nuccio” Bertone, one of the company’s most famous designers, the Nuccio concept car also celebrates the design firm’s 100th anniversary this year.

Bertone is responsible for some of the world’s most famous vehicles–the Lancia Stratos, Lamborghini Miura, Lamborghini Countach and several Alfa Romeos and Citroëns have passed over the drawing board at Bertone before hitting the streets.



2014 Chevrolet Corvette C7 Service Manual Images Leaked 27
Dec
Posted by Darryl in 2014 Chevrolet Corvette, Automotive, Chevrolet, Chevrolet Corvette, Corvette C7, News on 12 27th, 2012

The guys at Jalopnik have discovered several images posted on the Corvette Forum enthusiast site of the new Corvette C7, which all appear to be from a service manual of the upcoming American sports car.

The anticipation is steadily building as we await the Detroit Auto Show next month where there will be an onslaught of new vehicle reveals and releases including that of the highly anticipated Corvette C7.

Many of the design elements of what we see in the speculated service manual leaked images of the new C7 Vette, show us fresh body panels and new technology. Many of the images match to what some spy photographers have captured up to this point of the C7 out on testing grounds. Some will say that the design looks to have traits of current sports cars such as the Nissan GT-R, and maybe some hints at the Camaro. Either way, the new C7 is looking to be an stunning vehicle, good for some and maybe questionable for others.

What we do know, aside from the previously released details on the new V8 engine for the C7 Corvette, is that we cannot wait to get our hands on one when it hits the ground literally burning up the rear tires.

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Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays 2012! 25
Dec
Posted by Malcolm Hogan in Automotive, Merry Christmas on 12 25th, 2012

We at AutomotiveAddicts.com would like to wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!



Two-door BMW Concept 4 Series Coupe 24
Dec
Posted by admin in Automotive News, BMW, Concept Cars, Coupe, Detroit-Auto-Show, Luxury, Passenger Cars, World Cars on 12 24th, 2012

With the launch of the BMW 4 Series coupe, we can officially say goodbye to the two-door 3 Series. BMW is moving its coupe and convertible models up one digit (like the 5 Series/6 Series relationship); when the next-generation 1 Series launches in the States, it will actually be called the 2 Series. And while there are certainly a lot of 3 Series aspects to this new 4er, BMW says the new car has given the new model its own individual character and a standalone design.

two-door BMW Concept 4 Series Coupe

Compared to the current 3 Series coupe, the 4 Series concept rides on a two-inch-longer wheelbase, adds 1.7 inches of width, and is just over half an inch shorter in height. The whole thing looks very sculpted and sleek, and there are plenty of design elements from the larger 6 Series, as well. The full-LED headlamps and aggressive lower fascia will certainly grab your attention, but if we’re honest, some of us prefer the simpler, cleaner lines of past 3 Series models versus this somewhat overly stylized new coupe. From the rear, however, this thing is damn pretty.

The interior certainly looks good, too – premium leather is slathered on nearly every surface, and the overall design is modern and plush. A lot of what we see here is similar to the larger 6 Series, again, but that isn’t a bad thing. Specific details have not been divulged for the production 4 Series, but expect a full suite of technological goodies to be packed inside the cabin, as well.



Volkswagen brings Buggy Up! concept 22
Dec
Posted by admin in Buggy Up, Concept Cars, convertible, Frankfurt-Motor-Show, Off-Road, Passenger Cars, Volkswagen, VOLKSWAGEN, VW on 12 22nd, 2012

Typically an automaker releases information on its latest concept cars. But when you get this Volkswagen have a few surprises up its sleeve that were neither previewed beforehand nor unveiled at the VW Group event the night before the Messe opened its doors to the gathered press.

Volkswagen brings Buggy Up! concept

Not only did Volkswagen unveil the new production Up! city car, it also showcased a whole mess of Up-based concept cars as well. Drawing its inspiration from the iconic Meyers Manx and other such Beetle-based beach buggies, the Buggy Up! concept takes the new urban hatchback’s mechanical bits and covers them in a new shape that has no doors. Instead, there’s a waterproof cockpit with two neoprene bucket seats, drain holes, a grab-handle for the passenger, a removable infotainment module and a fabric roof. The hatchback, meanwhile, has been replaced with a trunklid that splits to fold up and down for easy access.



Volkswagen Shows Off The Golf R Convertible: Video 21
Dec
Posted by Kurt Ernst in Automotive, Kurt, video, Volkswagen, Volkswagen Golf R Cabriolet on 12 21st, 2012

At Volkswagen’s Wörthersee uber-fest in 2011, the automaker wowed gathered fans by showing off a topless Golf R concept. Reception was so positive that VW made the decision to put the car into production, and it’s due to make its world premier at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show.

Those of us on this side of the Atlantic shouldn’t get too excited, as it’s highly unlikely the car will land on these shores. Blame VW’s strategy of emphasizing the new Beetle as its primary convertible, coupled with the relatively low demand for hard-top Golf R models. Still, we’d bet this topless Golf R would be serious fun on the right roads, in the right weather. Like Volkswagen says, adrenaline now comes in open top form.

VW isn’t releasing details on the Golf R Cabriolet just yet, but we’d expect it to come with the same turbocharged 2.0-liter engine used in the standard Golf R. That’s good for 256 horsepower and 243 pound-feet of torque, and it comes bolted only to a six-speed manual transmission. The stock Golf R can reel off 0-60 runs in just over six seconds (before you have it tuned, that is), and we’d guess that the cabriolet will add a few pounds and a few tenths to this time.

Expect more details as we get closer to the Geneva show, scheduled for March 7-17, 2013.



Porsche Shows Off The All-New 911 Carrera 4: Video 21
Dec
Posted by Kurt Ernst in 2013 Porsche 911 Carrera 4, Automotive, Kurt, porsche on 12 21st, 2012

2013 Porsche 911 Carrera 4

If you live where the weather gets cold and snow is a potential fact of life between Thanksgiving and Easter, chances are you view a sports car as a three-season luxury. As much fun as a traditional Porsche 911 is on dry pavement with sticky tires, it’s less than ideal for winter transportation, even when fitted with winter tires. No one sums this up better than the late Frank Zappa, who once penned “a cow don’t make ham.”

Or does it? Porsche’s 911 Carrera 4 is the German automaker’s answer to those who refuse to compromise on their ride due to geographical limitations, and it may just be the best all-weather, all-purpose sports car on the planet. While the previous version, the Type 997, had a distinctly different (and heavier) feel, Porsche’s Silverstone chief driving instructor Gordon Robertson explains that the new Type 991 Carrera 4 feel lighter and better balanced. It’s different, Robertson says, when it needs to be different.

The car can trace its lineage directly back to the legendary Porsche 959, which was originally developed for Group B rally competition. The 959 proved itself off-road by taking the first and second podium spots at the 1986 Paris-Dakar Rally. Later, the road-racing Porsche 961, also based on the 959, proved itself at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

The first 911 Carrera 4 hit the market in 1989, and the car has continually evolved since then. One common element of all 911 Carrera 4 models is the red reflector line used to define the rear; in the new Type 991, this is now illuminated and used to accentuate the car’s wide-body design.

The new Carrera 4 will hit dealers in early 2013, packing a 3.4-liter flat-six engine good for 350 horsepower. If that’s not fast enough for you, the Carrera 4S will come with a 3.8-liter flat-six, rated at 400 horsepower. Both models are available with either a seven-speed manual gearbox or Porsche’s superb seven-speed PDK dual-clutch automatic transmission.



Low-Speed Vehicles of Bennch 21
Dec
Posted by admin in ATV, Automotive News, LSV, side by side atv, UTV on 12 21st, 2012

In recent years, Americans have become very popular outdoor recreation and sports. For good outdoor activities use special LSV (Low-Speed ​​Vehicles) cars. Bennche offer Chongqing Huansong Industries Group (Hisun) products. All of our UTV, ATVs, side by side UTVs, and other vehicles showcase Hisun’s commitment to excellence.

LSV (Low-Speed ​​Vehicles) are used in many areas of life. So it is very popular is the use of this technique to:

  • golf
  • rally
  • cargo traffic
  • passenger traffic
  • Outdoor recreation
  • others

LSV’s (Low-Speed Vehicles) are a rapidly growing market segment. All LSV’s that we sell meet the federal standards that define an LSV. These are not just golf cars that have added features. LSV’s hold the same requirements as automobiles in terms of insurance, tags, titles, and taxes. All ours LSV the unit has equipped with headlamps, front and rear turn signals, tail lamps, stop lamps, reflex reflectors, exterior and interior mirror, parking brake, windshield.

Side by Side UTVs: Utility Vehicles
UTVs Utility Vehicles
For homes, offices, farmers, a wide range of models Side by Side UTVs: Utility Vehicles from simple travel and ending upgraded accessories included for work. Wide range including models with 2, 4 safely seats. This models can equipment many This model range may have special equipment, trailers. Have the equipment, you can perform any load carried in your household or farm.

Bennche ATVs: All Terrain Vehicles

For people who like outdoor activities and sports we offer a range of Bennche ATVs: All Terrain Vehitsles. You able with ATV to explore your territory with all new Gray Wolf 700 or Gray Wolf 500. Featuring a powerful, four-stroke, liquid-cooled engine; independent front and rear suspension, the Gray Wolf goes from 2WD to 4WD with the easy flip of a switch, so you can conquer tough off-road conditions

ATVs, All Terrain Vehicles
You can use the LSV is to make short shopping trips, social trips, and or for recreational use. The Bennche Bighorn UTVs come in handy while you’re working on the farm or for the yard work that needs to be done in the neighborhood. This means that you can use these LSV vehicles not only for recreation, sports and entertainment. It is in essence a multi-passenger and freight-efficient service costs.

Bennche has been providing good quality and affordable UTVs and ATVs since the beginning. Now with Bennche’s consumer financing program, you can own a Bennche UTV or ATV easier than before. Bennche specializes in developing and producing quality utility vehicles, UTVs, ATVs, side by side ATVs, motorcycles, and electrical golf carts .Our factory-direct products come standard with many upgrades, like:

  • Roofs
  • Windshields
  • Winches
  • Aluminum Wheels
  • Street-Legal Ready Equipment

This factory-direct, why you can get not only quality products, but also service with best support on warranties and products. All parts are stocked and shipped from assembly facility in Carrollton, Texas. and this is American quality.



Infiniti Building A 550-Horsepower Flagship Sedan 20
Dec
Posted by Kurt Ernst in Automotive, Future Models, Infiniti, Infiniti M, Infiniti Q70, Kurt on 12 20th, 2012

2013 Infiniti M sedan – image: Infiniti

Days after announcing a bizarre and questionable naming strategy for all new Infiniti models, company head Johan de Nysschen seemed to placate fans by “leaking” some very good news on Facebook: Infiniti is working on a forced-induction V-6 version of its M sedan (which will become its Q70 sedan in the near future) that will be good for over 550 horsepower. While speculation is that the new Infiniti sedan will get the 3.8-liter V-6 from the Nissan GT-R, de Nysschen’s comments referred to the new engine as a 3.0-liter unit.

The news was hidden in a statement from de Nysschen, who wrote, “I’m sure you will agree, it would be a bit odd to have a powerful, luxurious and refined V8 powered Infiniti M56, then position a new high-tech 550+ horsepower performance flagship for the Infiniti M range above it, using a potent charged induction V6, but then call it Infiniti M30, which we would be obliged to do, following our current naming logic.”

While that would be bizarre, equally odd is that under the new naming strategy, the V-8 powered M56 would be called the Q70, while the faster forced-induction M30 would be called… the Q70. Having the same name for the two cars, apparently, makes more sense than using different names, since consumers simply wouldn’t understand that the M30 > M56.

We’ll stop questioning Infiniti’s logic now, because we don’t care what they decide to call a 550-horsepower M (or Q). In fact, if it came to market as the Infiniti QM70550 Fluffy Bunny, all our ridicule would go out the window as soon as we dropped the hammer.



Quick Spin: 2013 Chrysler 200 V6 Convertible 20
Dec
Posted by Malcolm Hogan in Automotive, Chrysler, Chrysler 200 Convertible, convertible, Test Drives on 12 20th, 2012

For 2013, Chrysler continues to keep their prided 200 convertible moving forward with slight improvements. For the 2013 model year, the new Chrysler 200 Convertible remains the same except for much-needed suspension system improvement for the V6 soft-top model.

Having driven the new Chrysler 200 Convertible earlier this year, it was evident of Chrysler’s goal to provide the masses with an affordable option when the need arises to literally let the top down and your hair blow in the wind. With much of the success of Chrysler’s two door Sebring convertible being the gateway to the new 200 convertible, Chrysler kept things simple but expanded the new fresh styling of the 200 sedan and new technology with an excellent powertrain.

Powered by the new 3.6-liter V6 Pentastar engine, the new Chrysler 200 Limited convertible has ample power and proves to provide quite the relaxing drive, as one would expect from a convertible. Though, the underwhelming interior fit and finish along with the hefty weight of the new 200 convertible remains to be somewhat of a disconnect for enthusiasts. However, being that the 200 convertible’s demographic will not want much more than what they expect from a convertible rental car, the 200 convertible does just fine with its consumer base.

The new 2013 Chrysler 200 convertible is available in a base Touring trim with a 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine producing 173 horsepower and a Limited trim featuring the 283 horsepower 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 found in my test vehicle. For 2013, either trim can be optioned with an S package featuring sporty accent such as a darkened grill, sporty darkened alloy wheels and perforated sued-like leather seat inserts with the S embroidering.

Power output from the beefy 3.6-liter V6 engine is delightful but delivered in an inconstant manor due somewhat hard shifts by the new 6-speed automatic transmission in my test vehicle. I do not remember the 2012 200 Convertible S that I reviewed earlier this year shifting so abruptly. Possibly, the transmission programming has been adjusted for the 2013 model. Either way, the 6-speed auto transmission still quickly shifts but not without some unnecessary feedback at times. Fuel economy for the V6 model is estimated at 19 mpg city and 29 mpg highway, which were easily attainable numbers during my time with the V6 200 Convertible.

To address previous issues of the 2012 Chrysler 200 convertible’s hefty weight, the suspension system for the V6 soft-top convertible has been revamped. The spring rates are now higher, by over 20%, with some additional damping and a thicker front anti-roll bar. The setup may have been a bit too harsh for the hard-top convertible model, but all 200 convertibles get a revamped steering rack and rear toe-link for a better road-feedback and ease of drivability. The new setup seems to keep the car more balanced with only a minimal amount of added stiffness to the ride going across bumps when compared to last year’s model. Still, the over-weight issue (4,058 pounds) is noticeable when the 200 convertible is pushed near its limits in turns. And it is not hard to find those limits. In a nutshell, the new 2013 Chrysler 200 Convertible with its revamped suspension system eliminates its preconceived clumsy handing traits.

Exterior and interior styling remains the same for 2013. Chrysler’s Uconnect system still integrates nicely while the typical dashboard controls reintroduce the familiarity of a properly attired rental car.  Some will find it hard to quickly obtain a comfortable driver’s seating position even with the power seat. Moreover, the front seats fail to have enough bolstering to keep you in place even during a Sunday drive.

The new 2013 Chrysler 200 Convertible still remains to be a big improvement over the Sebring convertible. Over-all, the fresh exterior styling and over-all demeanor attempts to shake off being the epitome of a convertible rental car.

Chrysler possibly bets on the 200 Convertible’s loyal following, which only adds to the prided 200 Sedan’s excellent design. At a starting price of $27,100 for the base Touring 4-cylinder 200 Convertible and reaching a base of $29,890 for the V6, Chrysler’s convertible is in a competitive spot for those in the drop-top market. There are much more thrilling rides in the price category of the new 200 Convertible, sans a usable back seat. ie: You can actually fit 4 adults in the Chrysler 200 Convertible but may have issues with something like a new Camaro convertible. With the new 2013 Chrysler 200 Convertible, buyers will enjoy its open-air practicality with 4 usable seats and an economical but powerful drivetrain.

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Copyright: 2012 AutomotiveAddicts.com

SPECIFICATIONS

  • Price: Base Chrysler 200 Touring Convertible $29,890 / As-Tested 200 Limited Convertible V6 $35,510
  • Engine: 3.6-liter DOHC V6 283 hp @ 6400 rpm / 260 lb-ft torque @ 4400 rpm
  • Wheelbase: 108.9in.
  • Total length: 194.8in.
  • Total width: 72.5in.
  • Total height: 54.9in.
  • Track: f/r-61.7/62.7in.
  • Headroom: f/r-38.7/37.0in.
  • Legroom: f/r-42.4/33.5in.
  • EPA total interior passenger volume: 101.3cu.ft.
  • Cargo capacity: 13.0cu.ft.
  • Turning circle: 37.7ft.
  • 0-60mph: 6.8 seconds
  • Fuel tank: 16.9 gallons
  • Curb weight: 4,058 lbs.
  • EPA mileage: 19 mpg/city, 29 mpg/highway






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