Highlights from the 2014 LA Auto Show

Jack Martin

1884 De Dion Bouton et Trepardoux Dos-a-Dos Steam Runabout

This 1884 de Dion Bouton et Trepardoux Dos-a-Dos Steam Runabout was one Count de Dion's second prototype and can lay claim to having "won" the world's first automobile race. Although it takes more than half an hour to "steam" before it can be driven and needs "watering" every 20 miles, it is nonetheless, one of the most significant automobiles in history ... and it's for sale. Extensive detailed photo gallery.  Read More

The new Interceptor

With more comebacks than Dame Nellie Melba, the Jensen Interceptor name must surely have the record for the most revived name in automotive history. It was first used between 1950-57 for a 4.0 liter convertible based on Austin componentry, then rose to international awareness with its second coming in 1966 as a Grand Tourer designed by the Italian Carrozzeria Touring running Chrysler V8s of 6276cc and 7212cc. In 1967, the FF variant had four-wheel drive, anti-lock brakes and traction control. The next generation of Jensen Interceptor is previewed here - it will be built in Great Britain by the fast-growing CPP Global Holdings and will cost in the vicinity of US$200,000 when it hits showrooms in 2014.  Read More

Fisker Surf

Shown for the first time at IAA in Frankfurt last week, the Fisker Surf is a luxury/sports "shooting brake" or station wagon, built on the same base as the Fisker Karma (electric drive with gas-engined range extender), though the Ferrari FF look makes it a lot easier on the eye. The Surf can be expected in showrooms in the first half of 2013 with a price tag in the low six figures.  Read More

Maserati's Kubang SUV - more details

We covered Maserati's new sport luxury SUV prior to the announcement at IAA in Frankfurt earlier this week, but there's bit more info plus a lot more pics available.  Read More

Lamborghini Gallardo LP 570-4 Super Trofeo Stradale

There's a torrent of automotive news flowing from this week's Frankfurt Motor Show and next on the rank is the Lamborghini Gallardo LP 570-4 Super Trofeo Stradale - the most extreme V10 yet produced by Volkswagen's Italian supercar subsidiary. Only 150 of the four wheel drive 570 bhp carbon fiber projectiles, no doubt due to the extreme effort required to shave another 70 kilograms off the already anorexic Gallardo LP 560-4. The motor might be the same as a “normal” Gallardo but the aerodynamics and lightweight construction are what make it a genuine racer for the road.  Read More

23-year-old designer set to show 1088 bhp Electric Sports Car this week at IAA Frankfurt

The Frankfurt Motor Show opens this week and a number of new brands will be seen for the first time, including a Croatian company Rimac Automobili, which will show a pure electric sportscar named the Concept One with an aluminum frame, carbon fiber bodywork, and an all-up weight of just 1650 kg. Inside that lightweight construct lurks a massive 92 kWh battery capacity good for a 366 mile range. It's the performance of the car which has the buzz percolating though, as it has a claimed 1088 bhp, prodigious torque of 3800 Nm and an electronically-limited top speed of 305 km/h. Perhaps the most remarkable claim is the acceleration though, which has the 0-100 km/h time pegged at 2.8 seconds, making it one of the fastest accelerating road cars anywhere.  Read More

LEDSSPORTS LED markings remove the clutter from multi-sport court surfaces

Dutch company LEDSSPORTS looks set to solve one the major problems associated with the plethora of sports played on multi-purpose courts – LED court markings that can be turned on and off depending on the sport being played. Instead of the myriad lines on multisport surfaces which often confuse players, LEDSSPORT's Pulastic ® LED Court illuminates just one set of markings at a time, while the others stay “invisible”. The company also makes a range of other LED sports-related innovations, including a set of lights which function as a basketball shot clock.  Read More

1300 bhp monster truck fires refrigerators

Modern technology is capable of creating some astounding vehicles, as is evidenced by a behemoth of remarkable proportions that will be one of the attractions at the forthcoming Top Gear Live shows in the U.K. Each 6ft x 4ft wheel/tire combination of the Ford 350 Monster truck weighs in at a quarter of a ton, but that's no problem because its methanol-burning, supercharged 9.5 liter Chevy motor produces 1300 bhp and more than 1000 ft-lb of torque. Economical it is not, delivering a jaw-dropping 50-60 yards per gallon. Completing the over-the-top creation, the truck is fitted with a 600 psi air cannon capable of firing any object up to 650 kg (1,433 lb). Refrigerators go more than 80 yards (73 m), scooters (pictured) go a lot further.  Read More

BMW and Husqvarna to show electric motorcycle concepts in Frankfurt

Two of the more intriguing concepts planned for the world's largest motor show (IAA) in Frankfurt a fortnight from now will come from BMW Motorrad and sister brand Husqvarna. Almost nothing about the concepts has been disclosed other than their existence and a few cryptic words in a press release which mention an e-mobility BMW Motorrad design study and "a new idea for individual single track mobility" from Husqvarna.  Read More

The smart forvision electric concept

Smart's iconic lightweight fortwo was such a natural for conversion to electric propulsion that it was one of the first zero emission cars with a badge recognizable by the general public. In essence, the electric smart changed little from the petrol-engined version apart from the drivetrain. Now it has teamed with chemical developer BASF to envisage the smart reconstructed with new materials for insulation, reflection, energy management and weight saving. The roof not only transmits light, it generates energy. smart says the end result of the forvision makeover is an increase in range of 20 percent with exactly the same powertrain.  Read More

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