more top stories »

Frankfurt Motor Show

— Motorcycles

The Can-Am Spyder gets a trio of fully-faired touring versions

Bombardier Recreational Products has had a remarkable success with its three-wheeled Can-Am Spyder since the roadster’s launch more than two years ago, and the big news is that the Spyder is to be developed into two streams – one for sports riding and one for touring. The existing GS model will now be designated the Spyder RS (roadster sport) and the new touring range will be designated Spyder RT (roadster touring). There’s also a new special edition Spyder RS-S model, with a host of additional features as standard, three RT models and a purpose-built 622 liter trailer. Read More
— Automotive

Brabus E V12 ‘one of ten’ unveiled at IAA 2009

German performance vehicle manufacturer Brabus has done it again with the “world’s most powerful high-performance sedan”. Brabus has a history of churning out high performance sedans, but the new Brabus E V12 'one of ten' unveiled at IAA 2009 outdoes all previous efforts. Dubbed the 'Black Baron', the car features a newly-developed SV12 R Biturbo 800 12-cylinder displacement engine boasting a rated power output of 800hp (788bhp), which is able to propel the car to a ridiculous top speed of more than 370kmh (230mph). Read More
— Automotive

Ferrari 458 Italia debuts at Frankfurt

The Ferrari 458 Italia finally saw the light of media flash bulbs on the Ferrari stand at the 63rd IAA Frankfurt Motor Show yesterday after a series of online sneak previews. We've written extensively about the car previously, an evolution of Maranello’s mid-rear engined V8 sports cars and, as usual with Ferrari, the 458 Italia is a concentration of innovation thanks to the company’s racing expertise. Employing exactly the same techniques and methods used to develop the Scuderia’s F1 cars, Ferrari’s engineers concentrated their efforts on obtaining the maximum in terms of efficiency in every aspect of the car, and their commitment was repaid with levels of fuel consumption and C02 emissions that set the benchmark in this market segment – 13.3 l/100 km and 307 g/km respectively in the combined cycle (ECE+EUDC). Read More
— Automotive

Volkswagen’s electric E-Up! Concept – 84 mph and 80 mile range

Volkswagen showed an all-new electric vehicle, the E-Up! Concept, at Frankfurt yesterday, indicating strongly that the car will be very close to the production model we’ll see in 2013. The 81 PS (54 PS constant) front-wheel-drive E-Up! can accelerate to 62 mph in 11.3 seconds before reaching a top speed of 84 mph. The E-Up! weighs just 1,085 kg (it’s lithium-ion batteries weigh 240 kg) and will have a range of over 80 miles. Read More
— Around The Home

VW enters the home power market

Volkswagen has recently announced a rather ambitious project that, for a change, has nothing to do with cars. Teaming up with regenerative-power company Lichtblick, it aims to install 100,000 co-generation power units in Germany as part of a concept called ‘SchwarmStrom’ which, literally translated, means ‘swarm power’. Successful application would allow Germany to abandon the use of nuclear and coal power stations and provide adequate backup to renewable energy sources, reducing carbon dioxide emissions by up to 60%. Read More
— Automotive

The Peugeot BB1 electric four seater just 2.5 metres long

One of the most visually distinctive cars on show at Frankfurt on the opening day of the world’s most important car show was Peugeot’s BB1 concept car. Looks aside though, the inbuilt practicality of a car just 2.5 metres long and capable of seating four people indicates how the design freedom afforded by electric cars opens the way for reinventing the automobile in every way: architecture, style, interior design, interior space and connectivity. Read More
— Automotive Feature

The Audi e-tron electric Quattro with 4,500 Nm of torque

One of the highlights of IAA 2009 was undoubtedly Audi’s electric Quattro, and the development ecosystem the company is establishing. Dubbed the e-tron, it has four motors producing in total a 230 kW (313 hp) and a stunning 4,500 Nm (3,319.03 lb-ft) of torque, enabling it to accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h (0 – 62.14 mph) in 4.8 seconds, and from 60 to 120 km/h (37.28 – 74.56 mph) in 4.1 seconds. The car’s lithium-ion battery is stored directly behind the passenger cabin for an optimal center of gravity, and holds 42.4 kilowatt hours, enabling a range of 250 km. Read More