The News for March 20th, 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:

  • Nissan GT-R goes gold for its 45th anniversary

  • Jaguar to debut the all-new XF in an… interesting way

  • Kia promises an all-new Optima for the NY Auto Show

  • BMW to run the 12 Hours of Sebring with classic 3.0 CSL livery

  • McLaren reveals the new Sports Series’ door

  • Chevrolet to debut the sixth-gen Camaro to fans in Detroit

  • What’s your automotive news?

Nissan GT-R 45th Anniversary Gold Edition

2016 Nissan GT-R 45th Anniversary Gold Edition
The Nissan GT-R is getting a handful of updates for the 2016 model year. Most importantly, pricing is unchanged from the last model year despite the new tweaks; but those willing to throw extra cash at Nissan can pick up the biggest update in the range, the 45th Anniversary Gold Edition GT-R.
Built off the GT-R Premium model, the Gold-ish GT-R commemorates 45 years of the original Skyline GT-R with Silica Brass paint off of the 2001 Skyline GT-R M-Spec, a gold-toned VIN plate in the engine bay, and a commemorative plaque on an interior panel. The Gold edition also features new twenty-spoke RAYS aluminum-forged alloy wheels which comes available on the Premium model as well. Worldwide production figures for the 45th Anniversary Gold Edition weren’t given, but 30 are at least coming to America.
As for the rest of the GT-R range, the Premium and Black Edition get an extra five horsepower bump out of the same VR38DETT 3.8-liter twin-turbocharged V6 for a total of 550 horsepower. The top-of-the-line Nismo remains unchanged with 600 horsepower out of the same unit.
Prices for the 2016 GT-R range start at $101,770 for the Premium, $111,510 for the Black Edition, and $149,990 for the Nismo. Prices for the 45th Anniversary Gold Edition were not disclosed.
[Source: Nissan]

Jaguar XF debuts on March 24th

In just four days from now, Jaguar will present the all-new XF to the world in a way that nobody else has before: by performing the world’s longest high-wire water crossing. Why? Because Jaguar.
The all-new XF will supposedly offer unrivaled levels of refinement, luxury, comfort, and technology as well as segment-leading efficiency. So naturally, it needs to be driven across a high-wire. This suspenseful debut will take place in London and will be live streamed on at 19:00 GMT on March 24th. The stunt will be performed by British stuntman Jim Dowdall, known for his work in Bond, Bourne, and Indiana Jones movies. He will be driving the all-new XF across two 34mm-diameter wires suspended high above water to help demonstrate its lightweight construction, agility, and water resistance.
Crucially, the new XF’s design is headed by Ian Callum, who already has a stellar track record with Jaguar designs. He believes the all-new XF will be “the best looking car in its class. Elegant, handsome and with proportions that imbue a great sense of integrity – the all-new XF will be true to the strong tradition of sporting Jaguar saloons while being completely of its time”. If he says it’s the best-looking, I believe it.
Full technical details will come on April 1st during its full debut at the New York Auto Show.
[Source: Jaguar]

Kia Optima teaser

Back in 2010, Kia was just starting its serious transformation into the company it is today. The cars are more competitive, they look better, and its brand image has more or less recovered from the less-than-great lineup it once had. At the forefront of this radical transformation was the redesigned Optima. It featured all of the new styling cues that trickled down to the other models as they went through their transformation and it was arguably the first sign that Kia wasn’t here to mess around anymore.
So on April 1st, Kia will reveal the all-new Optima at the New York Auto Show. No details are known about it yet, but Kia has supplied us with a few concept renderings to give us an idea of how it’ll look. If you look past all the flamboyant concept car proportions and the over-sculpted features, it looks… uhm, just about the same. The headlights, center grille, side vent, and that little notch on the upper part of windshield could all be traced back to what’s already on the Optima you can buy today. Hopefully more of this concept rendering’s attractive proportions make it into production to substantially differentiate it, but they usually never do. Regardless, the 2016 Kia Optima will sell well and be another important car for Kia, whether it’s actually all-new or not.
[Source: Kia]

BMW Z4 GTE heritage livery

*WANT intensifies*
BMW is a company that likes to celebrate its past accomplishments as often as possible, but it’s not often that they do it with their motorsports program. Last weekend, BMW did just that with the introduction of a special livery for the BMW Z4 GTLM to commemorate one of their most important wins in America.
In 1975, BMW North America was founded just a few days before a BMW won the 12 Hours of Sebring for the first time. The 1975 BMW 3.0 CSL took the victory 40 years ago, so for the 12 Hours of Sebring this weekend, BMW Team RLL’s #25 Z4 GTLM will carry the colors of the winning 3.0 CSL as it seeks victory yet again. The 12 Hours of Sebring is the second race in the Tudor United Sports Car Championship after the Rolex 24, where BMW earned a hard fought 2nd and 4th place.
While it’s not confirmed in the press release, this special livery will probably only be run at Sebring. But it should definitely be the official livery for as long as BMW participates in USCC.
[Source: BMW]


McLaren Automotive took to Facebook to reveal the new Sport Series’ door! Yes, it’s just a door. But this is the first time we’ve seen any part of the upcoming McLaren not camouflaged. The Sports Series is just days away from its unveiling at the New York Auto Show, so don’t expect this to be the last teaser shot McLaren gives us. What we can tell from this is: 1) it has a door! 2) it has carbon fiber 3) it’s available in orange. Don’t you just love teaser shots?
[Source: McLaren]
Chevrolet is inviting fans to see the all-new 2016 Camaro on Sat
Chevrolet got into the teaser spirit by confirming the all-new Camaro’s release date and badge. The reveal won’t take place at an auto show, but rather at Belle Island just before the Chevrolet Detroit Belle Island Grand Prix. A day-long celebration on Belle Island of all things Camaro will ultimately lead up to Chevrolet’s presentation of the sixth-generation Camaro. The event is free to attend but spots must be reserved at The day-long celebration will include a Camaro museum, hot lap rides in the Z/28 around the Belle Island GP course, meet-and-greets with Camaro designers and engineers, and of course, Camaro-only parking for owners. The all-new sixth-gen Camaro drops on May 16th, and when it does, it’ll sport the red, white, and blue badge as shown above and include a mix of parts where at least 70% are unique to the Camaro.
[Source: Chevrolet]

What was your automotive news?

That green group of pixels a Euro-spec Ford Focus RS MkII in Georgia. I promise. On my way home the other day, I caught a glimpse of a MkII Focus RS pulling out of a Walgreen’s right in front of me. I was only armed with my phone, so I tried to snap a shot of it at a red light; but as you can see, it didn’t go so well. When I tap my screen to take a picture, my phone sits there for a while contemplating life and its place in the universe before actually doing anything. So that’s why a GMC and a Volvo are blocking the car that I probably won’t see again on the road legally for another twenty years. That night I posted this [shamefully] to an Atlanta-area car enthusiast Facebook page and the owner chimed in within a few hours while others suggested that there might be others here as well. It’s here legally having been driven in from Mexico and at least one of them is only here for 60 days before it goes back.
Your turn.

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  1. Sjalabais Avatar

    Suzuki is heavily advertising the new Gran Vitara in my local paper. It looks like the result of a 15 year old Subaru and a random RAV4 hiding behind the garage for 15 minutes. Not that bad, really:
    They use this picture of a turquoise car, sometimes photoshopped to brown. And: A black Kizashi has started to come towards me regularly on my morning commute. In lack of a better word, I have to say the stance is just right. I might try to snap a photo for Mr. Tanshanomi one day…

    1. Andrew Avatar

      Kizashis look surprisingly almost muscular in real life. Future cult classic for sure.

    2. Maymar Avatar
      What does it say about Subaru that it could just as plausibly be the progeny of a 15-year old model as a brand new one?
      Actually, nothing terrible really. And that Suzuki’s not bad looking either. Is it still semi-body-on-frame?

      1. Sjalabais Avatar

        Not sure about the tech specs – Suzuki gets new cars in the road completely under the radar of auto journalists. Would have to google it…

  2. nanoop Avatar

    I learned today that proportions can imbue integrity. And that ‘to imbue’ means more than just soaking it up.

  3. wunno sev Avatar
    wunno sev

    car hit 250k and then 251k last week, so of course this week it’s decided to develop a rough idle on warm starts. hot and cold starts are no problemo. i’ll run some injector cleaner through and see if it resolves itself; otherwise, it’ll just have to be shitty until i have a second car.
    it broke the quarter mil on the drive down to Texas, where i now reside. i’m going to have to get used to this truck-centric road system: as i moved to exit a parking lot, i noticed at the last second that it wasn’t a sloped curb i was headed toward, but a regular curb, with no grass, guard rail, or other indication that This Is Not An Exit. it was like driving off a sidewalk. i hit the brakes, but not before the car slammed down on, i assume, the front subframe. i was able to reverse back up the curb, and there was no damage underneath, but it really pissed me off that there was nothing to indicate the unsuitability of this exit for probably half the cars on the road.
    i also scraped on a sharp undulation in pavement on a residential street a few days ago. really, there are a lot of trucks out here, and i guess the roads aren’t set up for something low with a relatively long wheelbase.

  4. Citric Avatar

    Why am I weirdly interested in getting a base model Ram? Is this something that happens to men as they age? No real interest in owning a truck for years, strong preference to the small hatchback, and now I’m sitting here thinking “huh, full size truck, I could go for one of those.” Of course I’m a weirdo so it’d be a base model, black trim, brown paint, so on.
    But I won’t buy one because I don’t want to actually pay for one. I’ve just been sitting here looking at base model Rams for a while now.

    1. Maymar Avatar

      So, my father-in-law, his car recently had the engine rebuilt under warranty (bearings went out, or something), at 95k kms. So, not wanting to deal with the problems of a car with a rebuilt engine (and, sure enough, it hasn’t been right since he got it back), he decided to trade it in on something else (actually, an Elantra GT pretty similar to yours, I believe). I was idly checking Auto Trader for whatever ’14s are being cleared out fairly cheaply, and realized for about $19k, he could’ve gotten a stripped Hemi Ram. Which is admittedly a terrible idea, as he drives too much for work, and already has an older pickup he’s looking to unload, but with the V8, it’s the sort of terrible idea he’d laugh off and then call me an idiot or something.