The News for March 30th, 2018

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. There’s also just a little opinion of mine because I can. This week:

  • Jaguar stuffs a bigger engine into the F-Pace

  • Audi introduces RS 5 Sportback

  • Lincoln is giving the Aviator another go

  • Genesis reveals G70, a new 3 Series fighter

  • The Toyota Corolla iM lives on as the Corolla Hatchback

  • Honda reveals some more Insight numbers

  • Lamborghini stuns with Huracan Performante Spyder

  • Cadillac bores with XT4

  • What’s your automotive news?

Jaguar F-Pace SVR

In a move that almost surprised someone, Jaguar Land Rover’s Special Vehicle Operations has injected some of their high-powered goodness into the Jaguar F-Pace for a special SVR model. The F-Pace SVR gets a full makeover with a beast of an engine, special suspension, and unique bodywork. It’s the “fastest and most powerful F-Pace yet”… it was only introduced two years ago, but still.

As with every other SVR made to date, the centerpiece is a supercharged 5.0-liter V8 which they somehow fit under the hood of this thing. That might actually be the most impressive thing about this. The F-Pace basically competes with the Porsche Macan but you don’t see them stuffing V8s in that one.
This V8 is the same one that’s in use in various Land Rover SVRs and the magnificent F-Type SVR, but it’s been detuned to 542 horsepower and 501 lb.-ft. of torque. With power distributed to all four wheels, that’s still good enough for a 4.1-second 0-60 mph time and a top speed of 176 mph.

Because their Special Vehicle Operations doesn’t just add power and push it to market, it also rides on uprated SVR suspension with stiffer dampers and roll bars, it cuts weight in the wheel department with new forged alloy wheels, and has special calibrations for the automatic transmission, traction and stability control, torque vectoring, and electric power steering.
Long story short, it’s an F-Pace that hauls ass. It also costs £74,835 (~$104,970).
[Source: Jaguar]

Audi RS 5 Sportback

Audi is offering the high-performance RS 5 option for their recently introduced five-door “coupe” this summer. Simply put, the RS 5 Sportback takes everything that’s great about the RS 5 Coupe and adds two more doors and a rear lift gate. So it adds three doors, I guess.

The highlights are 444 equestrian powers from a twin-turbocharged 2.9-liter V6, an eight-speed automatic, sport-tuned Quattro, a 3.9-second 0-60 time (only two tenths off the RS 5 Coupe), a top speed of up to 174 mph, five-link front and rear suspension, and more RS-bespoke hardware and software than I care to list. It moves like an RS 5 Coupe but has the added practicality of larger rear seats that might have enough headroom for some adults, thanks to its “coupe-like” roof line.
But most importantly… it comes in Sonoma Green Metallic.
[Source: Audi]

Lincoln Aviator

Remember when Lincoln sold the Aviator about 15 years ago during the height of America’s badge engineering craze? It was basically a Ford Explorer with a shrunken Lincoln Navigator grille and some interior upgrades that people didn’t seem to care about. It only lived for 3 years. This week in New York though, Lincoln announced round two for the Aviator… and it’s definitely not just a slightly nicer Ford Explorer anymore.

It’s technically a “preview” which might just be a more pretentious way of saying “concept”, but Lincoln confirmed the Aviator returns to showrooms next year and this vehicle shows the direction they’re headed with it. Highlights of said direction include streamlined styling inspired by its namesake, new technology that will aim to enhance the user experience (like having your smartphone serve as the key), and a plug-in hybrid option. The days of badge engineering are very much over.

The Aviator certainly looks like it’s ready for production, but we’ll keep an eye on how much it changes between now and it’s 2019 production timeline. I’m guessing it won’t change much.
[Source: Lincoln]

Genesis G70

Genesis, Hyundai’s luxury sub brand, has launched its opening salvo in the competitive entry-level luxury sedan segment. It’s that segment where everything is a BMW 3 Series fighter, but this one might be the most compelling fighter yet. It’s the Genesis G70 and it’s coming for the segment that Germany holds dear.
Following the brand’s “athletic elegance” design signature, the G70 looks the part with short overhangs, a long bonnet, and a cab rearward architecture. It looks mean, yet sensible. Or maybe that’s just my sleep deprivation thinking that.

The ‘athletic’ part of the Genesis mantra is brought to life by what lies underneath. It launches with a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine making 252 horsepower or a twin-turbocharged 3.3-liter V6 with 365 horsepower. Rear-wheel drive is standard while all-wheel drive is an option. The four-cylinder model has a six-speed manual option too, but there’s an eight-speed automatic option as well and the V6 version is automatic only.
It rides on a MacPherson multi-link front and multi-link rear suspension setup that’s designed to strike a balance between ride comfort and handling prowess. The Brembo brakes, limited slip differential, and Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tires help with the latter.
So… basically it’s how Genesis does a Kia Stinger. It goes on sale this summer.
[Source: Kia]

Toyota Corolla Hatchback

What used to be the Scion iM and Corolla iM will continue life as the Corolla Hatchback. Toyota revealed a slew of changes for the compact that take it up market a bit without sacrificing its playful spirit. It gets leaner and meaner, some new tech features, and a new engine to help breathe new life into a forgotten segment.
The redesign brings the car about an inch lower and makes it 1.2 inches wider and 1.5 inches longer to create some sportier dimensions for it. In that space is a more sculpted front and rear fascia, and it even sports an optional rear wing. They promise a tighter chassis, a lower center of gravity, and a more planted ride for the enthusiasts.
It will launch with Toyota’s brand new “Dynamic Force” 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine and will be available with six-speed manual or a CVT. There’s no word just yet on what kind of numbers are coming out of that engine.

Inside you get more cabin space, an eight-inch touchscreen, a wireless charging pad, and reworked seats that they say are more comfortable. It also comes standard with Toyota’s latest Safety Sense which features pre-collision warning with pedestrian detection, radar cruise control, lane keep assist, road sign assist, and automatic high beams.
It goes on sale this summer as well. There’s no pricing on it just yet.
[Source: Toyota]

Honda Insight

As the all-new Honda Insight debuted in New York this week, we got some new numbers for their upcoming hybrid. The 1.5-liter Atkinson-cycle four-cylinder gas engine working in conjunction with an electric motor backed by lithium-ion batteries produces a total of 151 horsepower and 197 lb.-ft. of torque. More importantly though for a car like this, they revealed a figure of 55 mpg in city driving – highway and combined numbers will come later. Also, with 15.1 cubic feet of trunk space, their goal of making the uncompromising hybrid sedan to date just might pan out. On the next episode of the 2018 Honda Insight Goes to Market, maybe they’ll tell us something else about it!
[Source: Honda]

Lamborghini Huracan Performante Spyder

Remember that super fast Lamborghini Huracan Performante that held the Nürburgring production car lap record for a few weeks? It’s like that, but now with a folding cloth top. It’s probably the coolest car in New York this week but there really isn’t much to say about it other than that. Look for it in the thumbnails of YouTube videos about how to make money with a new cryptocurrency.
[Source: Lamborghini via Autoweek]

Cadillac XT4

Remember every compact luxury crossover that’s ever existed? It’s exactly like that, except it’s from Cadillac.
[Source: Cadillac]

What’s your automotive news?

That’s all I’ve got for you this week, so now it’s your turn. If you saw anything, fixed something, broke everything, or otherwise did anything even remotely car related that you want to share with your fellow hoon, sound off in the comments.
Have a good weekend.
[Image © 2018 Hooniverse/Greg Kachadurian]

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30 responses to “The News for March 30th, 2018”

  1. mdharrell Avatar

    My news: HooptieCon went well, with my Allegro covering the 1700-mile round-trip without incident; I assume this means the car is attempting to lull me into a false sense of security. Thanks to the parade laps I may very well now hold the track record for an Allegro at Sears Point/Infineon/Sonoma. This is at the Arcane Auto Society portion of the event, with a Herald and a 2CV for scale:

    1. Kamil K Avatar

      You must set Allegro track records… everywhere!!!

      1. mdharrell Avatar

        I’m working on it.

    2. mdharrell Avatar

      I think I was parked next to that same 2CV at the 2009 Cd’L, too.

  2. Kamil K Avatar

    So… there is the new F-Pace SVR, and powerful Maserati something SUV with more power, and I guess some other ones… and the folks responsible for the Jeep Trackhawk are somewhere laughing.

  3. Kamil K Avatar

    Also… crazy, but the Lincoln is the best of show IMO.

  4. GTXcellent Avatar

    Anyone interested in a now demon possessed Saab 9-3? I believe that the car has turned vindictive, knowing it’s time is neigh.
    I had to purchase another $65 bi-xenon HID bulb today (shouldn’t they last longer than 18 months or so?) I just hope the igniter isn’t shot too – guess I’ll find out this weekend.
    The more pressing matter though, is that the CD changer imploded, and my Iron Maiden, Number of the Beast CD is trapped! Big deal you say, who even listens to CDs in this day and age? Well, as someone who basically quit any new technology circa 1995, refuses to get a cell phone, and lives in the remote wilderness where [and I’m not exaggerating here] only 3 radio stations come in – it is a big deal. I think the removal/disassembly process is pretty straight forward – but then again, it is a Saab.
    Barring any weird, unforeseen circumstances, I’m pretty sure we’ll be ordering a JL Rubicon this summer.

    1. P161911 Avatar

      But the 9-3 is a combination of a Saab and a Malibu.

  5. Citric Avatar

    The most exciting thing about Lincoln is they’re actually giving all of their models real names instead of their dumb and confusing MK? nonsense.
    I want more luxury brands to realize they don’t have to try to be Germans.

  6. Maymar Avatar

    I’m into the Genesis Essentia concept if just for being a dramatic grand tourer. Also, it confuses me a little to be excited by a Hyundai.

    1. Fuhrman16 Avatar

      That is one pretty car.

      1. outback_ute Avatar

        Hadn’t seen that angle before, much better than the front!

    2. Rover 1 Avatar
      Rover 1

      The return of a flat,level window/DLO base, just like you need for good visibility.
      And thus, obviously not for production.

  7. Greg Kachadurian Avatar
    Greg Kachadurian

    My “news” is I’m pretty much sold on the 2018 Mustang GT. I put almost 1,200 miles on the rental I had for about 4 days last week and loved every minute. I can’t help but write a quick review on it because it was. Just. That. Good. I think a Performance Pack 2 Mustang GT will be enough for me 😛

    1. JayP Avatar

      I’m starting to see PP2 cars out and about.
      I can’t wait to see how they go on the track.

      1. Greg Kachadurian Avatar
        Greg Kachadurian

        I’ve been waiting for them to get in the hands of some trusted reviewers to reserve judgement, but I think it’ll be the Mustang that’s best for what I want to get out of it… besides a GT350 I can’t afford. The rental I had didn’t feel very planted at all in the twisties and I hear of the same issues with the new PP1, so I hope PP2 can fix that. Even if it doesn’t… shit I’ll probably get it anyway.

  8. Smaglik Avatar

    No auto news for me, but I did get 1000 miles of seat time in a fleet Honda Pilot from my University. Other than the manual climate control that confused me cause it was a typical auto climate interface (toggles and such) but manual, and the info screen that looked like something I’d draw up on my old Commodore, it really was pleasant to drive.

  9. tonyola Avatar

    “…and it’s definitely not just a slightly nicer Ford Explorer anymore.”
    Actually, the original Aviator was rather more than that. Even though it was based on the Explorer, the Aviator got the DOHC engine from the Mustang Mach I (slightly retuned) that had much more power, its own suspension tuning, a much nicer interior with a new non-Ford dash, and a front end that shared nothing with Ford.

    1. Sjalabais Avatar

      Is that a heart imprint on the steering wheel or is my chocolate milk giving me visions?

      1. tonyola Avatar

        I see the heart (for the first time), so it’s not your milk. Weird – other pictures of the Aviator interior don’t have the heart.

      2. crank_case Avatar

        Someone braked a bit hard wearing a pendant but not a seatbelt?

  10. Tomsk Avatar

    I can’t imagine I’m the only one hoping to see somebody do an AE82 FX16 GT-S inspired Corolla Hatchback for SEMA…am I?;0,0&resize=768:*

  11. Sjalabais Avatar

    I’m starting to see the occasional Honda Element here in Norway, never originally sold outside of the US though as far as I am aware. I like a reliable box on wheels that can be cleaned out with a pressure washer. But they never came with 6 seats, or did they? Only finding 4-seaters, which is short of my requirements.

    1. Rover 1 Avatar
      Rover 1

      Sold in Japan in RHD form as well. So we’re getting them here in NZ. It looks like four seats only, I can’t see how you’d get six in.
      For sale in Japan…

    2. Zentropy Avatar

      The four-seat limitation is what curbed my interest, as well.

  12. nanoop Avatar

    The car stereo in the 944 died, the second unit within one year. I suppose it’s either the usage at zero F, or the trickle charger, or both.
    The device won’t turn on or reset (and consequently refuse to return the audio medium I actually bought in a specialty store), and silently draw 3mA on battery/ignition each, which is the spec for standby.
    New cheapest unit I could find has a shitty UI but understands DAB signals.

    1. Sjalabais Avatar

      But isn’t that weird? I killed a DAB Panasonic with chlorine water attempting to clean my AC. But apart from that, even the four 100 NOK China units I have unprofessionally twisted into a varying array of cars have worked as they should.

  13. Zentropy Avatar

    I’m not normally an Audi fan, but that RS5 Sportback looks awesome (and it’s green!).
    Finally finished up the dual-1.75″-to-single-2.5″ exhaust on my E28, with a Magnaflow muffler and a high-flow cat. Doing the work with non-OEM parts saved me about $1700, but I think I’m going to need to add a resonator in the back to keep the neighbors happy. Next on the list are rebuilding the brake calipers, adjusting the valves, and replacing worn control arms.

  14. P161911 Avatar

    After a week with the Impala rental car I’m actually somewhat impressed. I got a V-6 and the 305HP is rather nice. The transmission could be slightly better and the “manual mode” instead a useful bump shifter or steering wheel paddles is a stupid toggle switch on top of the gear shift knob, nearly useless. The thing is BIG. At a hefty 6′ tall, there is room for another me in the backseat behind me, even with the seat in a normal position for me.While it has a huge trunk, it comes at the cost of some rearward visibility. The rear parcel shelf sticks up above the rear seats by 4-6″ which is just odd when viewed in the rear view mirror.