Tag Archives: World Premiere

Cadillac ATS vs. Germany’s Best

9 Jan

2013 Cadillac ATS: Photo Courtesy GM Company

Cadillac’s all-new ATS has been unveiled at the 2011 North American International Auto Show, signaling America’s most significant challenge to Germany’s dominance in the compact luxury sport sedan segment. Of the three German manufacturers, Audi, Mercedes-Benz and BMW, Cadillac has set their sights primarily on the BMW 3 series, who has led the compact luxury segment for years.

The 2013 ATS brings a high level of weight reduction in order to compete with the competition. To reduce the curb weight a combination of lightweight, high-strength steel, magnesium, aluminum and even natural-fibers have been used throughout the vehicle. The ATS’ hood is comprised of aluminum, while the engine mount brackets consist of even lighter magnesium. These savings allow the ATS to weighs in at less than 3,400 pounds, one of lowest in the segment.

2013 Cadillac ATS: Photo Courtesy GM Company

Weight has been reduced, but to compete with established models such as the 3 series, Mercedes C-Class and Audi A4 driving dynamics and handling need to be up-to-par. To fulfill these needs the ATS has used a multi-link, double-pivot MacPherson-strut front suspension, and the ATS is the first Cadillac to offer a five-link independent rear suspension. This, combined with the ATS’ nearly perfect 50/50 weight distribution should give the vehicle enough cornering and road-going performance to hold its own.

Other major mechanical aspects of the new ATS are its different engines and gearboxes. The North American market will receive three different power plants, in the form of two four-cylinders and one six-cylinder. The base engine is a 2.5-liter four-cylinder developing 200 hp and 188 lb-ft of torque. An all-new 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder with 270 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque gives customers an option for greater performance and more fun behind the wheel. Rounding out the engine offerings is a 3.6-liter V-6 with 318 hp and 267 lb-ft of torque. The power from these engines is delivered to the wheels via a choice of two transmissions, a six-speed automatic or six-speed manual. The ATS is also available in either a rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive configurations.

All-new 2.0L I-4 Turbocharged Engine: Photo Courtesy GM Company

In terms of mechanical makeup, the ATS definitely seems to match up well with its German counterparts, but what about the interior? In years past some GM vehicle have scored big in performance and handling, only to come up short with interior design and styling.

Well, you’ll be glad to know it seems like the designers at Cadillac have gotten the message, making the ATS’ interior both luxurious and driver-orientated. One of the major features of the new interior is the Cadillac User Experience (CUE). The entertainment and information system allows for the pairing of up to 10 technological devices, such as Bluetooth-enabled mobile devices and MP3 players to be integrated with less buttons and controls than traditional setups. The CUE system is controlled from an eight-inch LCD touch screen, located in the center of the vehicle’s dashboard. The ATS’ interior comes in three “collections”, luxury, performance and premium. BOSE surround sound and navigation systems are available on all three, with both systems coming standard on the premium collections.

Interior of 2013 Cadillac ATS: Photo Courtesy GM Company

© 2012 GermanAutoNews

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Sixth Generation BMW 3 Series Unveiled in Munich

14 Oct

New BMW 3 Series Sport Line: Courtesy BMW Group

The sixth generation of the BMW 3-series has been revealed in Munich. The new 3-series is larger, lighter and more efficient than all previous generations, yet still promises to deliver the spirited driving experience which has become synonymous with the BMW 3-series.

New BMW 3 Series: M Sports Package: Courtesy BMW Group

The dimensions of the new 3-series have grown in nearly all aspects. The track has increased by 37mm in the front and 47mm in the rear, while the length and wheelbase have expanded by 93mm and 50mm respectively. In addition to changes in size the F303-series will be offered in three unique model variants, the Sport Line, Luxury Line and Modern Line, with each designed and engineered to cater to a particular customer in a more intimate manner.

Under the hood, the new 3-series will be available with four different engines, all of which feature BMW TwinPower Turbo technology. The engine choices include two gasoline and two diesel units. A 3.0-liter inline six will continue to power the 335i and 335i xDrive, while the 328i receives the turbocharged, four-cylinder that was unveiled in April, along with the 2012 Z4 sDrive28i.

An optional eight-speed automatic transmission is the first to be used mid-sized luxury segment and promises to offer greater efficiency and decreased emission when compared to the standard six-speed manual transmission.

New BMW 3 Series Modern Line: Courtesy BMW Group

Despite the changes in power the new 3-series claims to maintain a fuel-efficient and economical profile. BMW EfficientDynamics have incorporated Auto Start-Stop function, Brake Energy Regeneration, Optimum Shift Indicator and situational operation of certain components into the latest 3-series. Those, along with a new Driving Experience Control button allows the driver to improve the total efficiency of the vehicle to an even greater extent.

With the introduction of the new 3-series BMW seems to be making a concentrated effort to make its vehicles more appealing to different demographics of potential buyers. With the Sport Line, Luxury Line and Modern Line, as well as the optional M Sport Package, BMW seems to have covered all of the bases. The first impressions were impressive, but the verdict is still out on the sixth generation 3-series. Only time will tell if the finished product lives up to its dramatic premiere presentation.

New BMW 3 Series Luxury Line: Courtesy BMW Group

© 2011 GermanAutoNews

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Any unauthorized reprint or use of any material is prohibited. No content information whatsoever may be reproduced or retransmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system without the express written consent of the creator of GermanAutoNews.com

First Glance: Audi S6, S7, S8 to debut in Frankfurt

1 Sep

By Matt McCarron

2012 Audi S6: Courtesy Audi USA

Three models from Audi’s high-performance S-line, the S6, S7 and S8 will debut at the 2011 Frankfurt Auto Show. All three vehicles will be powered by versions of Audi’s new 4.0-liter, twin-turbocharged V8. According to Audi the new engine offers greater performance while reducing emissions and improving fuel economy.

Despite being substantially smaller than the outgoing 5.2-liter, naturally-aspirated V10, the new engine in the 2012 S6 and S6 Avant (wagon) pushes out nearly identical horsepower and torque numbers. Peak output has been reduced by 15 hp to 420 hp, but torque has increased by just over 7 lb-ft to 405.6 lb-ft from 1,400 to 5,300 rpm. Even with the significant reduction in displacement and slight drop in horsepower, the new engine still delivers performance figures consistent with Audi’s S models. The S6 reaches 60 mph in 4.8 seconds and the S6 Avant just 0.1 slower in 4.9 seconds. All power for the S6 is transferred to the wheels via the seven-speed S tronic transmission and offers Quattro all-wheel drive.

While performance is impressive what really shines through is the S6′ efficiency. Audi claims overall fuel economy has improved by as much as 25 percent to roughly 24 mpg. Much of the added mileage is the result of high-tech technologies, namely in the form of start-stop, energy recovery and cylinder management systems. The S6 has also incorporated an active Noise Cancellation system (ANC), which reduces and cancels out much of the noise emitted from the engine during cylinder disengagement.

Stylistically the S6 differs from the A6 courtesy of exterior mirrors in an aluminum-look finish, prominent side sills and a single-frame front grill. It can also be distinguished by two exclusive exterior paint colors, Estoril Blue, crystal effect and Prism Silver, crystal effect.

2012 Audi S7: Courtesy Audi USA

The S7 offers the same engine, with the same horsepower and torque numbers as the S6 and S6 Avant. Technology and other features are identical between the two models. The S7 comes standard with an adaptive air sport suspension, 19-inch wheels, and internally ventilated disc brakes front and rear.

The top-of-the-line S8 once again sets the standard for Audi’s S-line. With a more robust V8 engine the S8 sprints from 0-60 mph in just 4.2 seconds with a limited top speed of 155 mph. As with the S6 and S7, the S8 has increased performance while drastically improving fuel economy. Average consumption has jumped from 17.8 mpg to 23 mpg, regardless of a 70 hp improvement in power. Cylinder management, Active Noise Cancellation among other technology are all standard on the S8. All other aspects to the S8, from the near-exclusive use of aluminum in the body design, to the high-end finish in the interior all reflect why this is Audi’s flagship model.

2012 Audi S8 TFSI V8 engine: Courtesy Audi USA

© 2011 GermanAutoNews

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Any unauthorized reprint or use of any material is prohibited. No content information whatsoever may be reproduced or retransmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system without the express written consent of the creator of GermanAutoNews.com

2012 Mercedes Benz C-Class Coupe to debut in Geneva

13 Feb

By Matt McCarron

Following its television debut during Super Bowl XLV, Mercedes-Benz said information on the new 2012 Mercedes-Benz C-Class coupe would become available during mid-February, and it didn’t take long at all. Keeping with their word, Mercedes released details for the new two-door C-Class on Feb. 13.

The 2012 C-Class coupe is poised to make its world debut at the 2011 Geneva Auto Show on March 1. True to form, the C-Class coupe will be offered in two variations. The entry level C250, will be powered by a turbocharged, 1.8-liter, inline four-cylinder engine, producing 201 horsepower at 5,500 rpm and 229 lb-ft of torque between 2,200-4,300 rpm. The upper level model C350 has a 3.5-liter V6 engine that produces 302 horsepower at 6,500 rpm and 273 lb-ft of torque from 3,500-5,250 rpm. Both power plants will be paired with a 7-speed automatic transmission.

2012 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupe: Courtesy M-B USA

The 2012 C-Class coupe will offer a number of improved communication and design features, allowing the driver to keep in contact without sacrificing safety or driver appeal. Some of the improved communication aspects include larger displays, phone book transfer, wireless streaming Bluetooth audio and a USB interface now located in the center armrest. The Sirius weather information and “Comand” navigation systems allow the driver to access maps and directions via Google maps, or transfer previously uploaded files from a PC directly to the vehicle.

Even though the C-Class coupe offers optional features, giving the driver access to the latest in-car technology, many Mercedes-Benz owners expect a certain level of quality and finish when purchasing a vehicle from the German manufacturer, whether it be in an entry-level C-250 or a top-of-the-line C63 AMG. The 2012 C-Class coupe is no exception. The interior of the C-Class coupe is tastefully adorned with metallic trim pieces, adding a feeling of class and elegance to the two-door coupe. The instrument panel’s three cylindrical rings are finished in a metallic hue, along with many of the controls and central and side air vents.

The 2012 C-Class coupe is an all-in-one package, combining sporty handling, a classy interior and aggressive styling. The MSRP should be expected to range between low-30 and 40K range. The 2012 C-Class coupe is expected to arrive in U.S. dealerships and showrooms in September.

© 2011 GermanAutoNews

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Any unauthorized reprint or use of any material is prohibited. No content information whatsoever may be reproduced or retransmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system without the express written consent of the creator of GermanAutoNews.com

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