Category Archives: Spy Photos

Challenger Spied wearing a Huge Brake Kit, is there a new Supercharged Engine under that hood?

The Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 and Chevy Camaro ZL1 were the most recent salvos launched in the pony car horsepower wars, and Chrysler Group is reportedly preparing to return fire with the rumored “Hellcat” engine. These latest spy shots might just show a Hellcat-equipped supercharged Dodge Challenger, as the prototype looks to have the brakes needed to slow down 600-plus hp.

Hellcat Supercharged V8 Prototype - Spy Shot

Hellcat Supercharged V8 Prototype – Spy Shot

The tester wears an unusual set of wheels as well as a non-production exhaust system, which could lead the casual observer to believe it’s a modified Challenger SRT8. However, a closer look at what’s behind those front wheels reveals larger brake calipers and rotors compared to the standard SRT8.

Hellcat Supercharged V8 Prototype - Check out the Exhaust

Hellcat Supercharged V8 Prototype – Check out the Exhaust

As we’ve previously reported, that powerplant is rumored to be a supercharged 6.2-liter V-8 producing as much as 640 hp. The Hellcat engine is said to be lighter and more compact than the Viper’s 8.4-liter V-10, and would likely be produced alongside the existing 6.4- and 5.7-liter Hemi V-8s. With SRT boss Ralph Gilles telling us in March that the upcoming Barracuda has been delayed, a high-powered Challenger could be just the thing to tide over Mopar fans.

Hellcat Supercharged V8 Prototype - Now thats a big boy brake kit

Hellcat Supercharged V8 Prototype – Now thats a big boy brake kit

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Take a look at the Upcoming BMW M4 Testing at Nurburgring

With just months to go before the debut of the new BMW M3 and M4, it’s only right that we’d catch a prototype or two testing. And we have: this M4 coupe prototype was spotted testing recently at the Nurburgring.

2014 BMW M4 Spy Shot - Front 3/4

2014 BMW M4 Spy Shot – Front 3/4

The next-gen model will ditch the natural aspiration and V-8 engine for a twin-turbo six-cylinder model (an I-6, not the rumored V-6) that will make about 450 horsepower and 406 lb-ft of torque — an increase of 36 horsepower and 106 pound-feet over the current engine. Total weight loss for this new model is estimated to be 220 pounds through the adoption of a carbon fiber roof, trunk, and hood. With the increase in power and decrease in weight, the M4 you see here should be able to sprint to 62 mph in 4.3 seconds, down from 4.6.

2014 BMW M4 Spy Shot - HeadOn

2014 BMW M4 Spy Shot – HeadOn

We should see the final car this fall at the Los Angeles auto show, months before a summer 2014 release.

2014 BMW M4 Spy Shot - Rear 3/4

2014 BMW M4 Spy Shot – Rear 3/4


BMW Springs a Leak and Reveals it’s X4 Concept SUV

Last month, BMW confirmed that its long-awaited X4 crossover would debut next year, but other than imagining a smaller X6-shaped crossover. It’s no secret that BMW is planning to enlarge its crossover lineup with a more style-oriented version of its popular X3. However until Yesterday we had no idea how a compressed X6 would look like. Fortunately yesterday a Russian website (Autowp) leaked a handful of embargoed images this morning showing the X4 Concept that will be unveiled in a couple of weeks at the Shanghai Motor Show.

2015 BMW X4 Concept SUV - Head On

2015 BMW X4 Concept SUV – Head On

While the X4 follows the same general blueprint as the X6, the coupe-SUV combination appears to be better suited to the X4’s tighter proportions proportions.  The X4’s exterior design is also aided by more organic character lines.  The concept’s 21-inch wheels give the X4 a decidedly sporty look, but those rollers will likely be downsized for production.

2015 BMW X4 Concept SUV - Front 3/4

2015 BMW X4 Concept SUV – Front 3/4

This thinly veiled concept truck should carry over almost untouched when it enters production with the exception of the door handles and the overly stylized fascias and side mirrors. According to CarScoops, it will measure the same length as the current X3 and use the same engine lineup as well.

2015 BMW X4 Concept SUV - Side Profile

2015 BMW X4 Concept SUV – Side Profile

The production version of the X4 will be built alongside the X5, X6 and X3 and BMW’s plant in Spartanburg, South Carolina.  Look for the road-going version of the X4 to make its world debut this fall at the Frankfurt Motor Show, with sales likely to kick off in early 2014.

2015 BMW X4 Concept SUV - Rear 3/4

2015 BMW X4 Concept SUV – Rear 3/4

Stay tuned, as we’ll have more information on this concept shortly.

bmw-x4-official-5_1035


Cadillac Announces its new 420hp Twin-Turbo V6 Engine

With GM promising it’s loyal red, white, and blue followers five world debuts at next weeks New York Auto Show the rumor mills have been running rampant. One Model that was indirectly confirmed to be in the big apple next week will be the 2014 Cadillac CTS.

While the Detroit carmaker is holding back on the pictures, it confirmed details on the engine lineup, which is highlighted by a brand-new 3.6-liter twin-turbocharged V6 gasoline unit paired to an 8-speed automatic transmission – both a first for the brand. The PR department has indicated that “The new powertrain is the highest-output V6 we’ve done in General Motors history,” said Richard Bartlett, assistant chief engineer for the engine. Which is a far cry from the 3.8-liter V6 found under the hood of my Dad’s old 88 Bonneville which could only manage a few ponies over 200, or the 245hp in his 98 supercharged model.

2014 Cadillac Twin Turbo 420hp LF3 Engine

2014 Cadillac Twin Turbo 420hp LF3 Engine

The Brand-new 3.6-Liter unit will produce 420hp at 5750 rpm and 430 lb-ft of torque between 3500-4500 rpm. On this non-V CTS, Cadillac claims a 0-60 mph time of 4.6 seconds with a top speed of about 170 mph. A version of the engine will also be made available in the 2014 Cadillac XTS.

This LF3 engine will feature an all aluminum construction and will feature both direct injection and rather large intercooler. Official fuel-economy ratings from the Environmental Protection Agency haven’t been set, but Cadillac expects the new CTS engine will be rated at 17 mpg city and 25 mpg highway, running on required premium fuel. It will be available only in a rear-wheel-drive layout.

2014 Cadillac Twin Turbo 420hp LF3 Engine

2014 Cadillac Twin Turbo 420hp LF3 Engine

The next-generation CTS will carry over the 3.6-liter V6 from the current car (likely as a base engine) and also add the 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder from the ATS. The twin-turbo V6 is the most powerful of three engines announced for the redesigned CTS. We had to look up stats on those engines and discovered the following: The naturally aspirated directed injected 3.6-liter V6 is rated at 321 hp at 6,800 rpm and 275 lb-ft of torque at 4,800 rpm; and the Cadillac ATS’ turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder is dialed up to 272 hp at 5,500 rpm and 295 lb-ft at 1,700 rpm.

2014 Cadillac CTS - Front 3/4 Spy Shot

2014 Cadillac CTS – Front 3/4 Spy Shot

We are expecting the turbocharged four and naturally aspirated V6 will be the only all-wheel-drive engines of choice due to the huge amount of that the twin turbos can produce in the newly introduced V6 engine. The rear-drive naturally aspirated V6 will also be mated to the new eight-speed transmission, while the all-wheel-drive variant and the turbocharged four-cylinder will be mated to a six-speed automatic transmission.

2014 Cadillac CTS - Rear 3/4 Spy Shot

2014 Cadillac CTS – Rear 3/4 Spy Shot

In GM’s release there was no mention of the ATS-V, but if the 420-hp twin-turbo 3.6-liter V-6 can make the 2014 CTS accelerate from 0-60 mph in 4.6 seconds, it may do just fine under the hood of the ATS.

The 2014 CTS goes on sale this fall and the brand has clearly addressed the one area where they were not yet able to compete with their German rivals, which in the words of jeramy Clarkson is “POWER!!!!!” Tune back next week when the cars official images will be released to see if the aggression from under the hood will translate to the body-lines of the car.

All the numbers for the CTS’ Engine and Transmission Options


Maserati GranTurismo MC Stradale Retains its Sexy Styling while adding two extra seats

Maserati has revealed it plans to show its new four-seater GranTurismo alongside the Quattroporte at the upcoming Geneva auto show. When Maserati launched the GranTurismo MC Stradale back in 2010 at the Paris Motor Show, its goal was to create a more performance-orientated version of the Pininfarina-designed coupe, with more power, less weight and a stiffer suspension.

2014 Maserati GranTurismo MC Stradale - Front 3/4

2014 Maserati GranTurismo MC Stradale – Front 3/4

Maserati says the GranTurismo MC Stradale takes its “inspiration from the racing version which competes in the Maserati Trofeo Championship.” However unlike the original MC Stradale, this car will not remove the rear seats meaning it will seat four. Other than that the 4-seater GranTurismo MC Stradale is identical to its 2013 MC 2-seater sibling.

The exterior styling of the GranTurismo MC Stradale has been taken to the next level and is highlighted by a new carbon fiber hood with an integrated air scoop. There are also new air extractors at the rear, and the updated GranTurismo MC Stradale rides on new look 20-inch forged alloy wheels.

2014 Maserati GranTurismo MC Stradale - Rear 3/4

2014 Maserati GranTurismo MC Stradale – Rear 3/4

Under the hood is the brand’s (or Ferrari’s) latest refresh of the 4.7-liter V8 engine making 455 hp, mated to a sequential 6-speed automatic transmission for quick shifts and enabling a top speed of 188 mph. And while it may be track focused, Maserati boasts that the new 4.7-liter engine is also more efficient, meaning fewer emissions, however they have yet to tell us how they have managed that feat.

The GranTurismo MC Stradale will make its world debut next week at the Geneva Motor Show alongside the European debut of the all-new 2014 Quattroporte.


2014 Jeep Cherokee is Leaked and then Confirmed as the Liberty Replacement

2014 Jeep Cherokee Limited - Head On

2014 Jeep Cherokee Limited – Head On

Jeep is not afraid to take risks, that’s for certain. This is officially the 2014 Jeep Cherokee, which replaces the Liberty, except in foreign markets, where that car was called the Cherokee all along. Jeep has pulled the sheets off the Cherokee well in advance of its New York auto show debut. The 2014 Jeep Cherokee replaces the Liberty midsize SUV and, finally, the U.S.-spec version’s badges will match those of the European model.

2014 Jeep Cherokee Limited - Front 3/4

2014 Jeep Cherokee Limited – Front 3/4

Jeep has only released a handful of shots of the trucklet’s new nose, not showing off the profile or rear view (we note that today’s spy shots didn’t show the rear, either), but they do give the best look yet at what is likely to be one of the most polarizing designs to come out in 2014. The crimped-back seven-slot grille is a big enough design change that it will take some getting used to, but add in the Cherokee’s aggressive split-lens headlamp treatment and you’ve got the makings of a design revolution.

2014 Jeep Cherokee Limited - In Motion

2014 Jeep Cherokee Limited – In Motion

It also announced that the model will start to arrive in dealerships during the third quarter. In a previous report by Automotive News, we learned that powering the Cherokee is a 3.2-liter V-6 engine based on Chrysler’s 3.6-liter Pentastar engine. It also gets an all-new 9-speed front-wheel-drive automatic transmission that ZF Friedrichshafen designed. We won’t be surprised either when it is announced the Cherokee will also have the 2.4-liter TigerShark four-cylinder and possibly 3.0-liter diesel for Europe on the options list. Fuel economy improvement will be more than 45 percent versus the outgoing mid-size SUV model (aka Liberty).

2014 Jeep Cherokee Limited - Interior

2014 Jeep Cherokee Limited – Interior

The all-new, “no-compromise” 2014 Jeep Cherokee sets a new standard with even more best-in-class capability, exemplary on-road driving dynamics, and fuel economy improvements of more than 45 percent versus the outgoing mid-size SUV model. The 2014 Jeep Cherokee will hit dealer showrooms in the third quarter of this year and production is expected to begin in May at the Chrysler Group’s Toledo, Ohio assembly plant.


The Toyota GT-86 Open concept spied Stretching its Legs in South Africa

Now isn’t this a tantalizing glimpse of the Geneva Auto Show bound Toyota GT-86 convertible “concept car”. The picture was snapped in Cape Town, South Africa, where we are guesstimating that it was participating in a photo shoot ahead of its big debut party during the big show next month. Seeing it finally in the flesh confirms that the convertible is just as pretty as the rendering that we have previously posted.

Toyota GT-86 convertible “concept car”

Toyota GT-86 convertible “concept car”

You can see them by clicking on the hyper links below:

Toyota GT-86 Convertible Teased Ahead of Geneva Motor Show Debut

Toyota’s Chief Engineer for the GT-86 confirms a Roadster version is coming

We’ll get a firsthand look at the GT-86 Open concept car in a few weeks when the doors open up at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show.