Editor-in-Chief's Note: From the "Misplaced Headlines" File, in today's The Wall Street Journal the headline "The Irrational Fear of GM Food" appeared. For a moment it gave us pause, and the idea that Captain Queeg was taking GM into the snack food business was a horrifying thought (Buick Pop? Chevy Energy Juice?), but no, thankfully, it was just another article about genetically modified food. - PMD
McLaren has released official factory performance numbers for its new P1 hyper sports car: 0-100 km/h (62 mph) in 2.8 seconds, 0-200 km/h (124 mph) in 6.8 seconds, and 0-300 km/h (186 mph) in 16.5 seconds – which is a full 5.5 seconds quicker than the iconic McLaren F1. The P1 also brakes from 100 km/h to zero in 30.2 meters. Despite having 916HP from its highly efficient 3.8-litre twin turbo V8 petrol engine and lightweight electric motor, the McLaren P1 delivers 34.0 mpg (8.3 l/100km) on the EU combined cycle, with CO2 emissions of 194 g/km. The electric motor offers a range of 11 km (6.8 miles) in full electric mode on the NEDC cycle, which sees emissions drop to zero.
The new Mercedes-Benz C-Class will have a dramatic new interior, so dramatic in fact, that Mercedes-Benz felt it necessary to do a show and tell a year before it appears in showrooms here. Mercedes-Benz says that the new C-Class, besides having an all-new interior, will have the lightest body shell in the segment, extensive safety features - including all of the available passive and active safety technology from the S-Class and E-Class - a new agile and comfortable suspension as well as GPS-sensitive air conditioning. The most prominent new styling feature in the interior is the completely reinterpreted center console, whose progressive lines "create an inviting, open sense of space, as well as a free-standing central display," according to Mercedes. More information will be forthcoming on the new C-Class as the months go by. The 2015 C-Class sedan will go on sale in the USA in the Fall of 2014 and will be built in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.
BMW has announced the US launch of a new line of BMW M Performance Parts developed specifically for BMW M5 and M6 models. Offering "a combination of lower weight, increased performance and a unique sound," according to BMW, the BMW M Performance Exhaust System was jointly developed by BMW M GmbH and exhaust specialists Akrapovič and is made completely from titanium. The BMW M Performance Exhaust System is offered both for the BMW M5 and for all variants of the BMW M6, it further enhances the characteristic sound of the 560 hp high-revving M Twin PowerTurbo V8 engine. Akrapovič -also an official partner of BMW Motorsport- is one of the leading manufacturers of titanium exhaust systems. Thanks to the use of this material, the BMW M Performance Exhaust System is exceptionally heat-and corrosion-resistant and lightweight. The reduction in weight compared to the standard exhaust system amounts to more than 22 lbs (10 kilograms). Another item for BMW M drivers is the BMW M Performance Alcantara leather steering wheel with display. On the display integrated into the top center of the steering wheel rim the driver is now provided, among other functions, with gear shift information as well as lateral and longitudinal acceleration values. Moreover, lap times in minutes, seconds and hundredths of a second can be displayed and saved. Other items include an M Carbon-Ceramic Brake System, carbon trim for the shift lever of the double clutch transmission, carbon interior trim, stainless steel pedals as well as BMW M Performance floor mats. The exterior of BMW M5, BMW M6 Coupe, BMW M6 Convertible and BMW M6 Gran Coupe models can be additionally individualized by carbon mirror caps and a BMW M Performance high-gloss black front grille designed exclusively for each specific model. BMW Performance accessories for the M5 Sedan and all M6 models will be available in BMW Centers next month.
Following its debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show, the new Jeep® Wrangler Polar Edition is coming to the U.S. Based on the Jeep Wrangler Sahara, the new limited-edition Jeep Wrangler features a Gloss Black Jeep logo above the new front grille, which has Black accents, Powerdome hood, body-color hardtop, deep-tint sunscreen glass, 18-inch polished Gloss Black alloy wheels and Polar White interior finishes. It will be available in both two- and four-door Unlimited versions. The new Jeep Wrangler Polar Edition also has a unique, three-color hood decal featuring the outline of mountains, and a black fuel-filler door from Mopar. A Trac-Lok limited-slip rear differential is standard. A "Polar" badge, located on the vehicle’s side next to the front fender flares completes the package. The badge exhibits the 78° S and 106° E coordinates that correspond to the location of Vostok in Antarctica: the exact point where the absolute severest temperature in the world was recorded at -128.56° F (-89.2° C). The new Jeep® Wrangler Polar Edition will hit showrooms in November.
Editor-in-Chief's Note: Sometimes the "car thing" is inexplicable, unless you're immersed in it of course, then you understand. Watch this great video "Some Old Ford" here. Thanks to longtime reader Roger Clarke for passing it along. - PMD
2014 Audi A4 quattro Tiptronic: $43,845 ($35,900 Base Price; Ice Silver Metallic exterior; Black Interior; 2.0-liter direct-injected turbocharged 4-cylinder engine with 220HP and 258 lbs-ft of torque; 8-speed Tiptronic automatic transmission; quattro permanent all-wheel-drive with 40:60 torque split; 17" 10-spoke alloy wheels with 245/45 all-season tires; Power glass sunroof with sunshade; power exterior mirrors (heated); Leather seating services; A4 Premium Plus model - 18" 10-spoke RS design wheels with all-season tires, Auto-dimming interior mirror with compass, Auto-dimming heated exterior mirrors, heated front seats with driver memory, Three-zone automatic climate control, split-folding rear seat back & trunk storage package, Audi advanced key, Audi xenon plus lighting with LED DRL & taillights, Aluminum window surrounds, S line exterior - $3,500; Audi MMI Navigation plus package - 1 CD/DVD-player with HD radio, AUDI MMI Navigation plus with voice control, color driver information display, Audi parking system plus with rearview camera, Audi connect with online services (6-month subscription) - $3,050; front filler panel; Destination Charge, $895)
Adherence to Brand Image: The Audi A4 is every bit an Audi and that's a very good thing. There are certainly several worthy competitors - the Cadillac ATS, the BMW 3 series, the Mercedes-Benz C-class - to look at in this class, but the A4 more than holds its own. - PMD