Wednesday, 27 May 2009

Mitsubishi Evolution X FQ400 coming to the UK in June

The Mitsubishi Evolution X FQ400 has been rumored for months and its finally ready for its close-up before sales begin in the UK this June.

In keeping with its NSFW nomenclature, the FQ400 is putting out 403 hp at 6,500 rpm, with peak torque – 387 lb-ft of the stuff – arriving at an oh-so-usable 3,500 rpm. The extra grunt is thanks to a set of high-flow fuel injectors and a new turbo with low friction bearings, an uprated thrust bearing and high temperature turbine that Mitsubishi insists will keep turbo lag at bay. A new intercooler helps bring down the charge, a new ECU works its binary magic and a three-inch stainless steel exhaust exits at the center of the restyled bumper, complete with carbon fiber diffuser.

The exterior benefits from a carbon fiber front fascia, side skirts and rear wing, along with the Sonic the Hedgehog "Vortex Generator" mounted on the roof. The ride height has been dropped by 30 mm with a revised set of Bilstein dampers and Eibach springs, each hidden from view by front Alcon brakes and 18-inch, nine-spoke wheels shod in super sticky Toyo Proxes R1R rubber.

In addition to all go-fast bits, the FQ400 is fully loaded with Bluetooth connectivity, 30-gig hard drive, sat-nav and privacy glass, along with a carbon fiber gear knob and matching handbrake handle.

Tuesday, 26 May 2009

GTA Spano supercar debuts in Valencia

Anything you can do, I can do...also. That seems to be the modus operandi of the Spanish auto industry vis-a-vis the Italians. So while Volkswagen is vying to reshape its Seat subsidiary into an Iberian version of Alfa Romeo, Spanish racing team GTA has been hard at work developing its own supercar to rival the best from Ferrari and Lamborghini. After months of speculation on our part and preparation on theirs, the GTA Spano has finally made its debut in Valencia, the same Mediterranean coastal city that hosts the European Grand Prix. While only limited details were revealed at the Spano's launch, our compadres over at AB Spanish got it covered.

Underneath the rather generic supercar body lies the beating heart of the beast: an 8.3-liter V10, purportedly sourced from the Dodge Viper, and tuned to deliver 780 horsepower. That's said to be good enough to propel the carbon, kevlar and titanium supercar to 100 km/h (62 mph) in a don't-blink-or-you'll-miss-it 2.9 seconds. The engine is mated to a choice of seven-speed paddle-shifter, automatic or gated manual transmission, 19" wheels coated in ultra-low-profile rubber grip the road at all fours, and the engine is even designed to burn straight alcohol if so desired. Production will be limited to 99 examples, each available at a price of around $670,000.

Koenigsegg engineer building modern-day Volvo P1800

Mattias Vöcks is at it again. Back in 2006, the Swedish-born designer who normally spends his days hand-assembling supercars for Koenigsegg used the SEMA to debut his show-stopping custom 1967 Volvo Amazon that was once voted "Sweden's Hottest Volvo." That title may soon go out to another of Vöcks' stunning creations, this time based on the classic Volvo P1800 made famous in part as the car driven by Roger Moore in the British television series The Saint from the 1960s.

With help from Bo Zolland from Swedish design firm Vizualtech, Vöcks has added a few modifications to bring the shapely Swedish beauty to modern standards. Aerodynamics are improved by a rear diffuser, flat underbody tray and a front fascia that's been smoothed out and lengthened by 70mm. Powering the beast is a 4.4-liter V8 borrowed from a Volvo XC90 SUV that's been force-fed by a turbocharger and routes its 600 horses through a six-speed manual transmission to the rear wheels.

According to a report by Auto Express, this custom Swede is slated to enter small-scale production at some unspecified date in the future. We can hardly wait.

Monday, 25 May 2009

Lamborghini Murcielago LP670-4 SuperVeloce

We haven't necessarily had a shortage of photos of the Murcielago LP670-4 SuperVeloce. In addition to the first batch of press photos released by Lamborghini, we also captured the super-Murcielago on the show floor in Geneva and once again here in the United States when it stopped by at one of our favorite weekly car gatherings. Even so, our salivary glands went into overdrive when we saw this latest batch of photos of the SuperVeloce. There' s just something about the outrageous over-the-top styling that takes us back to being a teenager.

Sunday, 24 May 2009


This is the Škoda Fabia ‘Super 2000’ Rally car.

Running to similar regulations to the World and British Touring Cars, the new Super2000 Rally class allows for some variations including wider bodykit and four wheel drive. This regulations will form the basis of the new World Rally Championship from 2011.

As Škoda is part of Volkswagen Group (Its not called VAG anymore), legendary rally driver, VW’s Carols Sainz has helped with development.

The Škoda team have a limited program in 2009, concentrating on National rallies in Czech Republic and some events in the Intercontinental Rally Championship (IRC) which sometimes runs as part of the World Rally Championship.

The series is competitive with participation from the Czech manufacture, Peugeot, Honda and Fiat. Regular Speedhunters may remember our feature on the JAS Honda Civic in 2008.

The Fabia made its IRC in the Monte Carlo Rally. Finland’s Juho Hanninen was leading IRC car on Day one, although later retired. Team mate, Jan Kopecky finished 4th. The Fabia S2000 first win came in the Norwegian Rally.

Looking further ahead, Francois Duval and co-driver Denis Giraudet will be competing in a Rene Georges run Fabia S2000 on the famous Ypres Rally in June, with help from Škoda Motorsport and their Belgium importer.

Rene Georges have rallied a number of VW products in their time including the VW Polo S2000 and are official partner of VW Motorsport.

Saturday, 23 May 2009

Mitsubishi Evolution FQ-330 SST: Euro Only

In keeping with Mitsubishi's FQ tradition abroad, the automaker has developed a new model to fit in between the standard FQ-300 and the insanity known as the FQ-400. The Mitsubishi Evolution FQ-330 (almost) lives up to its namesake by delivering an additional 29 hp (up from the standard Evo's 300 hp) and an additional 22 lb-ft. of torque for a total of 322. The sprint to 60 mph drops accordingly, with 0.3 seconds shaved from the standard cars 4.7-second time. The minimal powertrain changes consist of a reworked intake, high-flow down-pipe, exhaust and catalytic converter and a re-mapped ECU to make use of the breathing mods. As it's name would suggest, the FQ-330 is equipped with Mitsubishi's new six-speed Twin-Clutch Sports Shift Transmission (TC-SST), and the whole packages only commands a £3,000 premium over the standard Evo, at £35,999.


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