Porsche will roll out a new incarnation of the Boxter Spyder
at the Los Angeles auto show next month. The flagship mid-engined model is the lightest sporstcar in the company's range at 1,275kg and more powerful than the Boxster S, topping 235kW from its direct-injection 3.4-liter flat six-cylinder powerplant. All this adds up a hair-piece destroying top speed of 166mph (267kmh) with the roof open, making it Porsche's fastest Roadster.
Lexus debuted the replacement for both the current RX 400h hybrid
and the RX 350 petrol engine models at the recent Los Angeles Auto Show
. The new RX 450h will replace both models in the UK to produce an all-hybrid RX range, while in North America a non-hybrid RX 350 will also be offered. Both the RX 350 and RX 450h are propelled by a 3.5-liter 6-cylinder petrol engine which provides 205kW (275hp) with the 450h’s augmented by an electric motor to provide a combined output of 220kW (295hp).
Kia has rolled-out the latest chapter in its fuel-cell research vehicle development program at the Los Angeles International Auto Show. Continuing on from the Sportage
Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle (FCEV) technology demonstrator which made its European debut in Paris this year, the new Kia Borrego FCEV boasts significant improvements in both range (now over 400 miles) and performance (154 horsepower with a top speed of 100 mph).
The Mazda R&D team has fended off some very impressive competition to take out the Los Angeles Auto Show's 2008 Design Challenge
. This year's Challenge posed the question - "How will auto racing look in the year 2025?" - and Mazda responded with this rakish three-wheel design that utilizes a patented electronic tire system to draw energy from an electro-conductive road surface and achieve speeds of 250 mph with no harmful emissions.
After last year being asked to provide a glimpse of what automobiles will look like 50 years
into the future, design studios vying for recognition in this year's LA Auto Show Design Challenge are leaving city streets behind and heading for the racetrack under the theme "Motorsports 2025". Throwing away preconceptions of what motor racing should be and incorporating the possibility of cars that never crash or need re-fueling, nine of Southern California’s big-name automotive design houses have submitted entries, and again the results are both outrageous and thought provoking - from vehicles that race over land, sea and air to 8 x 4 wheel-drive ATVs and solar sailing energy-miser's that compete on see-through tracks.
In a further sign that full-electric drive vehicles are headed for the mainstream, BMW Group will showcase a lithium-ion battery powered version of the MINI
at next month's Los Angeles Auto Show ahead of a pilot project that will see 500 of the cars evaluated on US roads in 2009. Based on the current MINI Hatch, the MINI E will initially appear in two-seater form with rear seats dropped to make way for the battery pack. Rather than an in-hub motor arrangement, an electric motor mounted under the bonnet drives the front wheels through a single-stage helical gearbox derived from the Cooper S, and being all-electric, the full power kicks-in from a standing start delivering quite adequate acceleration of 0-62 mph in 8.5 seconds with a top speed electronically-limited to 95 mph.
will present a fascinating historical treat alongside the Cayenne Hybrid SUV
at the upcoming Los Angeles Auto Show – the 108 year old all-electric Lohner-Porsche. One of the world’s first zero emission vehicles and an early forerunner to environmentally friendly technologies like the Full-Parallel-Hybrid system now being showcased in the Cayenne prototype, the Lohner-Porsche was first unveiled at the Paris World Fair in 1900 and its appearance in LA this month will be the first ever public display outside Europe.