The News for August 28th, 2015

Welcome to the Hooniverse News! As always, this is a weekly recap of some of the biggest stories in the automotive industry without the fluff or bull. I just throw in a little opinion of mine because I can. This week:

  • Hyundai to launch N performance brand with insane concepts

  • Meet the Oshkosh JLTV, the military’s Humvee replacement

  • Kia shows off all-new Sportage early with… interesting styling

  • Honda previews awesome new concept and confirms debut for new Civic

  • Fiat Chrysler dealer meeting was allegedly awe inspiring, new Barracuda and others shown

  • What’s your automotive news?

Hyundai N 2025 Vision Gran Turismo

Hyundai will be at next month’s Frankfurt International Motor Show with a performance-driven display to help build momentum for a new sub-brand. It’s simply called N and it’s all about performance, apparently. It’s the same N sub-brand that they first hinted at in a press release back in 2013. Yep, I knew it sounded familiar.
Back then they wouldn’t talk about what all N would be doing and when, but I guess we know now. The Hyundai N spectacular will kick off at Frankfurt with a new i20 World Rally Championship car and two concepts. One of those concepts is going to be unfiltered insanity and it happens to be the same one going into Gran Turismo 6.
As part of GT6’s Vision Gran Turismo program (which is still going on), Hyundai will be revealing a one-off concept car built as a preview for the kind of madness N engineers are capable of. It’s called the Hyundai N 2025 Vision Gran Turismo and it highlights sustainable technology with a performance-minded design, the two big things N wants to accomplish with future products.

Hyundai N wants to get to a point where building something like this in the real world is possible, but that’s a long way out – the name even says so. To bring us back to 2015, the other concept is the RM15, a car that aims to show the brand’s passion for performance and suggesting how their ideas could be brought into production soon. It looks like it’s based on the Veloster, so that’s a good start. The only detail they’ve provided so far about the RM15 is that it has a mid-mounted 2.0-liter engine with 296 horsepower. It has more tricks that are currently being developed with the goal of eventually debuting in production cars, but we’ll have to wait and see what exactly those are.
In any event, Hyundai is finally doing something with that performance sub-brand of theirs sounds likes BMW M on a budget.
[Source: Hyundai]

Oshkosh JLTV to replace military Humvees

As I write this, I’m blasting the Team America theme song because reasons.
The Department of Defense has decided on what’s going to replace the AM General HMMVW/Humvee. After a defense contractor showdown for the contract to produce a new Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV) for the American military, Oshkosh Corporation has been chosen for the $6.75 billion contract. The terms call for Oshkosh to deliver 17,000 JLTVs to the Army and Marine Corps, which with a little bit of math turns out to be about $397,000 per unit.
It comes with great standard features for the money though, such as the ballistic protection of a light tank, MRAP-class levels of underbody protection, and supposedly off-road mobility and speed to rival a Baja racer. Optional luxury features include a panoramic roof for the tube launched missile system, a driver assist package including IED Defeat and Situational Awareness systems, and safety features like an automatic fire suppression system.
Comfort is provided by their advanced, combat-proven TAK-4i suspension system which enhances ride quality while promoting excellent maneuverability on any terrain and is height-adjustable through interior controls. The interior is luxuriously appointed with blast protected seats, headrests, and storage solutions. Buyers will get to chose from a two-seat utility version and a four-seat personnel carrier and each can be personalized with a huge variety of equipment to make it their own.
Deliveries are expected to begin within the next ten months. Check your local military for availability.
I can’t wait for these things to show up in surplus auctions…
[Source: Oshkosh Defense via Autoweek]

New Kia Sportage revealed early

And now for something that can’t take part in an invasion, the new Kia Sportage. This is scheduled to debut next month at the Frankfurt motor show but Kia has revealed its most noticeable update with some initial images. It can be seen here wearing the face of someone who just ran out of the lake because something touched their feet.
Kia pins the blame on their European Design Centre who led the new exterior styling project. The goal was to create a “bold, progressive design… with a sense of power and agility from every angle”. Whether or not they’ve succeeded is up to you. The single biggest change is right up front with headlamps sweeping back along the more sharply detailed bonnet. It’s meant to portray a more imposing and stable stance, but eh, see my earlier comment.
We’ll see and learn more about the all-new Sportage next month; and who knows, maybe they’ll have put more lights on it by then.
[Source: Kia]

Honda’s Frankfurt motor show plans

Honda, like that other Asian brand that starts with an H, will also bring an all-new showcase of power to the Frankfurt motor show next month. This includes a variety of new and updated models for the European market, some of which were already shown in America like the HR-V and CR-V, but also an interesting concept.
That interesting concept is the Honda Project 2&4 and it’s in that teaser shot above. This came to existence after Honda held a design competition between all of its global design studios. This winning design comes from their motorcycle design center in Asaka and their automobile design center in Wako, Japan. You can probably guess what’s coming next…
Project 2&4 is described as having a cabin-less structure for an immersive driving environment and power from the RC213V bike, which means a 1,000cc V4.
That all goes down on September 15th. On the 16th, however, Honda is finally going to show the all-new Civic in sedan form at least at events in LA and Detroit. It’ll be an interesting time.
[Source: Honda]

Fiat Chrysler shows the future to dealers

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles held a meeting with dealers in Las Vegas (where else) to talk about all the wonderful new vehicles they’d get to see pass through their showrooms in the near future. There’s no word on if they released updated markup guidelines, but they did allegedly show some of the upcoming vehicles we’ve been anticipating the most. If the reports Automotive News received from anonymous dealers are true, FCA will be cranking out some awesome product in the not too distant future.
Among the list of cars that were allegedly shown, a Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT Track Hawk complete with the supercharged 6.2-liter Hellcat V8, a premium Jeep Grand Wagoneer, a next-generation Dodge Charger, and something called a Barracuda. That last legendary name will finally return as a Dodge convertible sharing a platform with the Alfa Romeo Giulia and the next Charger. They didn’t talk engines besides the Hellcat motor in the Jeep, but it would be neat if we were deemed worthy of a Barraduca Hellcat.
Some Italian metal was shown as well, that being in the form of some new Alfa Romeo and Maserati content and even the upcoming Fiat 124 Spider.
So that *allegedly* confirms varying levels of awesome headed our way. That doesn’t include the Alfa Romeo SUV they showed though, because nobody cares about that. If some reports are to be believed, we can expect as many as 30 new or updated FCA models within the next two years.
[Source: Automotive News via Autoweek]

What’s your automotive news?

Because my automotive news this week didn’t have any pictures, have one of the thousand or so photos I’ve got left over from my time in Monterey a few weeks ago. I was at Laguna Seca on turn 6 snapping photos of anything that went by when suddenly a car spun around just after it made the corner. I couldn’t see where he spun but I could hear it. There was no impact, at least. As I’m looking through my photos I discovered that I captured the early stages of that spin. That’s a pretty fast corner and I can’t even imagine the pant-wetting terror of swapping ends there.
So how about you? If you saw anything, drove something, broke everything, or otherwise did anything newsworthy that you want to share with your fellow hoon, sound off in the comments.
Have a good weekend.
[Image © 2015 Hooniverse/Greg Kachadurian]

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23 responses to “The News for August 28th, 2015”

  1. Jeff Glucker Avatar
    Jeff Glucker

    HoonTruck – Radiator installed. Truck running much cooler!
    Now I went and installed a new temp gauge to replace the one I borked. To install it, I had to remove the distributor to gain access to the temp sensor location. Like an asshole, I didn’t mark the location of the distributor before I removed it… so now my timing is fucked.
    So today I’m going to learn how to set timing on a vehicle, after I return from Harbor Freight with a new timing light.

    1. nanoop Avatar

      Looking at the Wombat in comparison, the saying that you have to do it yourself if you want progress seems like being true again. Within a few hours, you will fix the car and improved your skills!

      1. dukeisduke Avatar

        Usually, when you install a distributor, you’re supposed to point the contact on the rotor at the number one cylinder, with the engine at TDC on number one. On an FE motor (352, 390) that would be the front right (passenger side) cylinder. Of course, the distributor gear is helical, so the rotor turns as your push the distributor down, so you have to take that into account.

  2. nanoop Avatar

    After a brief casual chat on WW about the wiper motors on the 944 where I claimed that a cheap replacement from a Golf would basically fit, my car decided to make me putting my soldering iron where my mouth is, and spun the gear.The replacement arrived today, looks as if it will fit. 400GBP vs. 400 NOK

  3. Frank T. Cat Avatar
    Frank T. Cat

    So the shift linkage on my 9-5 broke on the 8th, leaving me with only 3rd and 4th. Whoops. Getting the new shift linkage was a rigamarole (I don’t suggest using Saab USA Parts/Saab Parts USA as a result,) but I finally fixed it this Monday, the 24th.
    Then on Wednesday, I went to the NY Washington County Fair, aka NY’s biggest annual gathering of rednecks, in my 9-5. When I went to leave at 8:30 that night, I found the starter was dead. Long story short, I ended up having an AAA tow truck pulling me with a tow strap through the parking lot to bump start my car, and finally left at 10pm.
    I literally put 25 miles on the car since I replaced the shift linkage, and now I need to replace the starter too. ;-;

    1. CraigSu Avatar

      I share your Saab tribulations. One thing after another is piling up on the 9-3. When I had 2 new tires ($250) put on recently I was told that both right-side wheels were bent. Given that one of the left-side wheels already had some wheel hop in it I decided to just spring for a new set of wheels (Voxx MG-3, $450 installed) since it wasn’t much more than paying $120+$15 each to have the original wheels straightened and installed. Once those were installed I took it to have a 4-wheel alignment done since there was still noise coming from the front. That’s when I found out that the front wheel bearings were shot and would have to be replaced ($440) before the alignment ($75) could be done. When I picked up the car yesterday I was told that the motor mounts were going which is what was causing the thumping noise on acceleration (engine bottoming out on the axle). I was quoted $630 for that job (I’ll get another quote to be sure). And that’s just August. All told, I will have sunk over $3000 into the Saab just this summer once the motor mounts are done. And I haven’t even started on the cosmetics yet. The bright (?) side is that it’s only (?) about 8 months worth of what we can afford as a car payment. To replace the car with something more modern, reliable and suited to my taste I’d be making that same payment for about 5 years.

      1. Frank T. Cat Avatar
        Frank T. Cat

        I don’t dare add up the money I put into my cars. It’d probably put me over the edge.

  4. dukeisduke Avatar

    Alfa Romeo? LOL! Sergio has been promising a flood of Alfa models for several years (and no, the 4C doesn’t count). He also told Chrysler dealers to build separate Fiat store, and then they would be given Alfas. Then he told them they’d have to build Alfa showrooms. Fool me once, shame on you, etc.

    1.  Avatar

      Thou shalt not question the exalted Sergio. Blasphemy!

    2. William Robinson Avatar
      William Robinson

      The fiat store at one of the local chrysler dealers looks like a broom closet… are they not quite ready to commit or what.

  5. Tanshanomi Avatar
    New tires, tubes and rim strips arrived for the CL125S. Tying to get get it up and running for the K.C. Moto Giro, or “Tiddler Tour”: a 90 mile timed rally for bikes under 305cc and over 40 years old. It happens two weeks from tomorrow. Gonna be tight.×636.jpg

  6. hwyengr Avatar

    “You see, most blokes, you know, will be driving an M. You’re in an M
    here, all the way up, all the way up, all the way up, you’re in an M on
    the track. Where can you go from there? Where? ”
    “I don’t know.”
    “Nowhere. Exactly. What we do is, if we need that extra push over the cliff, you know what we do? ”
    “Get into an N.”
    “N. Exactly. One louder.”

  7. 0A5599 Avatar

    At lunch today I beat a Hellcat Charger across the intersection. Good thing the driver wasn’t aware we were racing.

  8. JayP Avatar

    Saw 6 Tesla Model S in traffic yesterday in a state that doesn’t allow direct sales.

  9. CraigSu Avatar

    So, when do we get the Inferno Gatto Giulia edition?

  10. salguod Avatar

    Taking my middle daughter to Tire Rack’s Street Survival school on Sunday. Sounds like it’ll be a good school on car control not just the mechanics of driving. Her older sister got to do a similar school at mid Ohio.

    1. Greg Kachadurian Avatar
      Greg Kachadurian

      I did one of those from BMW a few years ago and it taught me some valuable lessons. It’s great that you’re having her do it, she’ll benefit greatly from it!

    2. JayP Avatar

      My boy is almost 14 but he’s already tried driving. My plan is to get him to sit in on the HPDE green classroom sessions. It is high perf driving but a lot of it translates to daily driving. He’s still 4 years from being able to participate in an event but book learnin’ never hurt anyone.

    3. salguod Avatar

      It was a great day, lots of good driving exercises. Braking, slalom, lane change, skid pad and a short sort of road course. I ran into issues fixing the exhaust on her Protege Saturday so she did the the class in Mom’s Prius.
      I have a video that I’ll post later, probably in today’s Last Call.

  11. CraigSu Avatar

    The lede photo of the Hyundai N 2025 Vision Gran Turismo (phew!…um, where was I?..Oh, yes!) looks very Batmobile-ish under that cover.

  12. Guest Avatar

    “Oshkosh JLTV to replace military Humvees”

    Meh. They should have chosen the Tucker Combat Car, sure it’s an old design, but hey, airplane turret!

    1. Vairship Avatar

      Of course, since the Oshkosh b’gosh JLTV is too big to fit on any urban roads, other than those in the US and Canada, you know who’ll be invaded next…