Next-Gen Mercedes-Benz GLA Spied in Germany

Earlier this year, Mercedes-Benz debuted a lightly refreshed GLA lineup. The compact crossover received minimal changes to its front and rear ends, new fog lights, optional LED headlights, and some additional interior bright work. However, while the refresh extends the car’s life, this model isn’t long for this world as Mercedes-Benz is hard at work designing the next generation that we’ve captured testing.

Spied in Germany, this GLA mule wears less body cladding and camouflage than the last one we caught. Like the previous model, the 2019 Mercedes-Benz GLA will again ride on the A-Class’ platform when the next-gen cars arrive. Though the current GLA was clearly distinguishable from the A-Class hatch, it appears the next-generation cars will look more alike, if similar-looking recent test mules are any indication.

Although the camouflage is still obscuring much of the car’s features, some aspects are easily made out. At the front, a more aggressive hood and front bumper encompass the new headlights that resemble the GLA’s distant cousin, the AMG GT.

Moving rearward, the wheel wells have been enlarged and given protruding fender flares, very similar to the fender flares we saw on the E-Class All-Terrain 4×4² concept shown not too long ago.

Further back, the hatch appears to have a reshaped rear spoiler, new rear fascia, and new taillights. Engine options are likely to remain similar to the current model, with small-displacement turbocharged engines expected to make up the bulk of powertrain choices. It’s also likely that there will be another AMG-tuned model like the current GLA 45 AMG with a hotter engine.








The GLA will also likely receive a host of diesel options, but with Mercedes-Benz’s recent commitment to electrification, we wouldn’t be surprised if we saw an all-electric GLA, or at the very least a hybrid GLA, further down the next-gen GLA’s life cycle.

Mercedes-Benz hasn’t disclosed when the new GLA will launch, but given that the German company just released the updated GLA earlier this year, we’d guess the next generation won’t arrive until the end of next year at earliest.

Photo source: CarPix

The post Next-Gen Mercedes-Benz GLA Spied in Germany appeared first on Motor Trend.

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It Sounded Like A Good Idea: Leadville Stage Race Final Day

Ed. Note: It Sounded Like A Good Idea is a new semi-regular column by Olympic track racer Bobby Lea and endurance mountain bike racer Ian ‘Big DiRtY’ Mullins who have teamed up with plans to race Cape Epic, Breck Epic and the Leadville Trail 100 next year. But, this isn’t just another story about some guys going to some race. It’s going to go much deeper and possibly become more polarizing to you, the reader, because of its honest look at some difficult subjects. Read on and find out why


Photo courtesy of ATHLINKS

Sunday dawned bright and clear and I woke up with a possibly false sense of security that today wasn’t going to be that bad. Brimming with confidence, I thought I’d play loose and fast with the rules that normally govern endurance events at altitude. I planned to go over the limit and stay with the leaders over the opening climb for the sake of having a fast group to ride with through the double track and road sections leading into Powerline climb. Then I’d recover on the 20-30 minutes of flat before the final grind up Powerline, Sugarloaf Pass and Carter Summit, where I’d presumably have a good enough cushion to let the mountain goats go and climb at my own pace to the finish. Sounds good on paper, right?

Part 1 of the plan worked well as three of us went clear on the first climb and even though we were on mountain bikes it felt much more like road racing as we swapped turns and pulled away from the large chase group. The plan was working perfectly, but I had forgotten about one critical section that turned out to be more of a climb than I remembered . The wheels very nearly came off and the plan almost blew up in my face but despite a few minutes of flirting with disaster, things settled back down and the crisis passed.

We hit Powerline together, those two guys set about racing up the climb and I tried to tuck into a dark hole and wait it out, grind it out, hoping that I hadn’t burned too many matches in the first hour.

The climbs went on forever. The descents went by too quickly. Eventually I found myself on the outskirts of town and closing in on the finish. Just as I had wrapped my brain around mashing up one last paved climb to the line, the course made an unexpected turn and I was face to face with yet another steep, rocky climb that sucked whatever life was left out from my legs. With no sign of the finish other than my computer suggesting the end was near, I hobbled along, vacillating between motivated, exhausted, strong and completely distraught at the idea that the finish may be so much farther away than I thought. How much more climbing could there be! How many more minutes was I going to spend toiling away at 4 miles per hour! The crest of each small rise only revealed more climbing and just as I was really on the edge of melting down after turning onto a surprise singletrack hill, the finish was right there in front of me and it was all over.

I survived my first Leadville adventure no worse for wear and happily stood in line on shaking legs to collect my finisher’s belt buckle.

One of the biggest revelations from leaving the highly regulated and cutthroat world of pro road and track racing, where accolades and money are highly sought after, is seeing the vibrant community and social scene around events that cost a lot to attend and give you not much in return other than the chance to spend more money at another one of their events.

From the road racing perspective, that’s what we see, but to see it in such a narrow minded way is to miss the beauty of the event completely. It’s about community and family. It’s about self-exploration and pushing the limits. Above all, it’s about fun. For all of you amateur roadies out there who say the answer to dwindling numbers at your weekend races is more prize money, you’re wrong. One only must look at the overwhelming success of events like this to see the answer isn’t a small monetary reward for a day spent playing bikes with friends. One look at the hundreds of smiling faces walking around the Lake County Rodeo Grounds and you can see it isn’t about the tangible reward. One look at the joy and excitement from crossing the line, from completing the challenge and you’ll know that no amount of prize money can buy that feeling.

Photo courtesy of ATHLINKS

At the end of the day, we’re all doing this because we truly love bikes and we love being around other people who love bikes. With that thought in mind, I look forward to choosing my next race based not on the prize list but on how much I enjoy the event. And although I can’t make it back to Leadville in two weeks for the 100, I look forward to lining up at the Leadville Trail 100 in 2018 and doing this all over again.

 

 

Read the introduction to this trip if you missed it.

Day one can be found here.

Day two here.

 

 

Source: http://dirtragmag.com

2018 Honda CRF250R First Look

Honda’s 2017 CRF250R has been a perennial contender that has come up just shy of its peers when in the engine performance and suspension departments. With an all-new, electric-start, DOHC engine and a chassis layout that mimics the 2018 CRF450R, the 2018 CRF250R is poised to make a serious run at 250cc motocross class honors.

Honda’s all-new 2018 CRF250R mates the proven chassis and suspension of the 2017-2018 CRF450R with a DOHC, dual exhaust port engine designed for high-rpm power delivery.

Honda’s all-new 2018 CRF250R mates the proven chassis and suspension of the 2017-2018 CRF450R with a DOHC, dual exhaust port engine designed for high-rpm power delivery.

Although Honda showed the American moto press the CRF250R while we visited the GEICO Honda motocross shop in Corona, California, two weeks ago, Honda swore us to secrecy until it could officially unveil the 2018 CRF250R to the world today at the 36th Annual Rocky Mountain ATV/MC AMA Amateur National Motocross Championship, presented by Lucas Oil.

Here’s an excerpt from the company press release:


“HURRICANE MILLS, Tenn. (July 30, 2017)– In a special unveiling event with top Honda amateur motocrossers during the AMA Amateur National Motocross Championship at Loretta Lynn’s Ranch, American Honda unveiled the all-new 2018 CRF250R. Designed and developed following the same “Absolute Holeshot” philosophy as the CRF450R, the highly anticipated motocross model features a host of updates aimed at achieving maximum power and optimum handling.

“We’re excited to show this all-new, no-compromise model to our customers, and it’s appropriate that we do so with our family of Red Rider amateur motocrossers here at Loretta Lynn’s,” said Lee Edmunds, American Honda’s Manager of Motorcycle Marketing Communications. “The CRF450R has become the top-selling 450cc motocross model, and now that the CRF250R shares many of the same performance-focused updates, we’re confident it will enjoy similar success in the market and on racetracks everywhere.”


In addition to double overhead cams, the 2018 CRF250R engine boasts larger titanium intake and exhaust valves, dual exhaust ports, and a much larger bore and shorter stroke than the 2017 CRF250R.

In addition to double overhead cams, the 2018 CRF250R engine boasts larger titanium intake and exhaust valves, dual exhaust ports, and a much larger bore and shorter stroke than the 2017 CRF250R.

Honda is really hoping that the 2018 CRF250R will give the flat motocross motorcycle market a nice shot in the arm. According to Honda officials, the entire 2016 motocross market was down just under 1 percent while the 250cc four-stroke motocross segment was down 8.5 percent and Honda CRF250R sales have been down a whopping 26.9 percent to this point in 2017. Part of that low number may have to do with the buzz created when a pre-production version of the 2018 CRF250R broke cover at round three of the All-Japan MX Series, scoring a 1-1 sweep of the IA2 (250cc) class with rider Takeshi Katsuya. It signaled that a new CRF250R was on the horizon. Now it’s here, and it looks impressive.

Engine

The 2018 CRF250R’s clean-sheet approach does away with Honda’s Unicam four-valve engine design, which will remain in use on the CRF450R for the time being. To achieve maximum power levels at high rpm, the 250R’s 249.5cc engine boasts a double overhead cams and a new cylinder head that features a 1-degree narrower included angle than the 21.5-degree angle of the 2017 and larger titanium valves (33mm intake and 26mm exhaust instead of 30.5mm intake and 25mm exhaust). To help the engine breathe more efficiently the camshaft lobes deliver more valve lift on both the intake and exhaust sides, 10.5mm vs. 9.2mm on the intake and 9.5mm vs, 8.4mm on the exhaust. F1-style finger follower rocker arms are used for greater valve train stability with the higher lift cams. Like the 2017-18 CRF450R, the CRF250R also uses the valve springs with oval cross-section coils to help keep engine height as low as possible for better mass centralization. Honda engineers also relocated the cam chain to the other side of the engine; it’s now located on the right.

The double overhead cams actuate the valves through finger follower rocker arms. Honda has reversed the location of the cam timing gear and cam chain, placing it on the right side of the engine rather than on the left.

The double overhead cams actuate the valves through finger follower rocker arms. Honda has reversed the location of the cam timing gear and cam chain, placing it on the right side of the engine rather than on the left.

The 2018 engine also features a much larger bore and shorter stroke than the previous Unicam engine – 79mm x 50.9mm compared to the 2017’s 76.mm x 53.8mm. Pretty much a standard in the industry nowadays, a bridge-box piston is located in the CRF250R’s cylinder that now has a 4.5mm offset rather than a 4mm offset. The CRF250R is the first production Honda engine to utilize the proven piston design. A new crankshaft with an H-shape cross section reduces reciprocating weight by 350 grams without – says Honda – sacrificing crankshaft rigidity. A larger oil jet is also used in an effort to cool the underside of the piston more efficiently.

And, speaking of oil, the 2018 engine also gets a completely redesigned oiling system with a new scavenging pump that maintains negative pressure more effectively in order to reduce pumping loss and friction at the high rpm where the engine is designed to work best. The oil passages are shaped to provide a simpler and shorter path as the oil circulates through the engine. There’s also less oil in the engine than before, as the 2018 CRF250R does away with the separate engine oil/transmission oil compartments, allowing a reduction in engine oil capacity from 1600cc down do 1250cc. The oil pump, drive gear and filter are now located on the right side of the engine rather than on the left.

The downdraft intake system found on the CRF250R is just like that of the CRF450R.

The downdraft intake system found on the CRF250R is just like that of the CRF450R.

Honda didn’t feel the need to change the 2018 CRF250R’s throttle body size. A 46mm Keihin throttle body is still part of PGM-FI fuel-injection system, but the entire intake layout uses the same downdraft design introduced on the 2017 CRF450R. The benefit is that the incoming fuel charge gets a much straighter and more symmetrical shot into the combustion chamber than previous Honda designs for better throttle response and easier power production. The CRF250R’s ECU retains Honda’s excellent-working Engine Mode Select system, which allows for virtually on-the-fly engine mapping changes by simply pushing a button mounted on the left-side handlebar. It allows the rider to choose from among three fuel-injection maps: Standard, Smooth, Aggressive to match the terrain and/or rider preference. The system’s Smooth and Aggressive modes can also be re-mapped using Honda software and a laptop computer.

The CRF250R also features a new electric starter powered by a small, lightweight lithium-iron phosphate battery, same as the CRF450R. The design eliminates the need for a kickstarter.

The CRF250R also features a new electric starter powered by a small, lightweight lithium-iron phosphate battery, same as the CRF450R. The design eliminates the need for a kickstarter.

The end result of all of these changes is expected to be a CRF250R that offers superior acceleration and much improved top-end performance.

Clutch/Transmission

Honda also redesigned the 2018 CRF250R clutch and five-speed transmission. The new clutch still features coil springs, but it features clutch plates that use two friction materials instead of one. The gears in the transmission feature entirely different ratios than the 2017 CRF250R, and the whole works shave an additional 200 grams from the power train.

Chassis

The CRF250R’s aluminum perimeter chassis is taken from the proven sixth-generation design introduced on the 2017 CRF450R. The frame offers a shorter wheelbase and better flex to help improve rear wheel traction.

The CRF250R’s aluminum perimeter chassis is taken from the proven sixth-generation design introduced on the 2017 CRF450R. The frame offers a shorter wheelbase and better flex to help improve rear wheel traction.

We loved the slim, quick-handling aluminum perimeter chassis that Honda designed for the 2017 CRF450R (and now 2018 CRF450R), and since the 2018 CRF250R chassis is identical, it’s hard to imagine that our minds will be changed. The new-for-the-250 frame is intended to incorporate the same slim and low layout of the CRF450R and deliver better drive off the starting gate and out of corners while retaining high-speed stability. The new main spars are tapered and feature more gradual bends to offer better flex characteristics than the old ones, and the aft section places the rear shock 39mm lower in the chassis than before for better mass centralization. A new subframe has also been lightened by 20 percent via the use of an extruded rather than forged rear section. A shorter and narrower swingarm also shaves 220 grams from the chassis while placing more weight on the rear end. Like the CRF450R, the 2018 CRF250R also gets a 1.6-gallon titanium fuel tank to help lower the center of gravity even further. According to Honda, the chassis numbers break down as follows:

  • Shorter swingarm (588mm → 573mm); Design Goal: improve rear traction
  • Shorter wheelbase (1489mm (58.6 in.) → 1486mm (58.3 in.)); Design Goal: lighten handling
  • Slacker rake (27.4º → 27.5º); Design Goal: decrease front-end lift
  • Shorter trail (118mm → 116mm); Design Goal: optimize steering agility

One thing that’s also worth noting is that Honda’s claimed curb weight for the 2018 CRF250R (we haven’t weighed it yet) is considerably higher than that of the 2017 model. Honda says that the 2018 CRF250R checks in at 238 lbs., 7 more than the 2017.

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Even though some of DirtBikes.com test crew didn’t curse the previous-gen CRF250R’s 49mm inverted Showa SFF-Air fork as much as other air fork designs on the market, the fact that Honda has ditched it in favor of a 49mm Showa SPG coil spring fork doesn’t hurt our feelings one bit. We praised that fork during our 2017 450cc Motocross Shootout, and there’s no reason to be suspect of its performance on the CRF250R. The kit uses a productionized version of Showa’s A-Kit race suspension—which means no trick coatings—to help deliver what we’re confident will be a plush and controlled 12 inches of front suspension travel. Out back, a fully adjustable Showa single shock is connected to Honda’s trademark Pro-Link rising rate rear suspension linkage to produce 12.4 in. travel.

The CRF250R now features a 49mm Showa coil spring fork instead of an air fork. The internals are a production version of Showa’s A Kit race suspension.

The CRF250R now features a 49mm Showa coil spring fork instead of an air fork. The internals are a production version of Showa’s A Kit race suspension.

The 2018 CRF250R’s brake and tire spec is about the only thing that hasn’t really changed all that much from the 2017. The wave-style front rotor still measures 260mm and is clamped by a Nissin two-piston rotor, while the rear is a 240mm wave-style unit with a Nissin single-piston caliper. Dunlop is still the OEM tire supplier for the CRF250R, although Dunlop Geomax MX3S 80/100-21 front and 120/90-19 rear tires replace the MX51s found on the 2017.

Of course, the 2018 CRF250R is nothing like the 2017 model, and you also won’t mistake the one for the other at the track. The ’18 boasts smoother, more compact bodywork that is designed to not only help slim up the look of the bike and improve ergonomics, it’s also designed to be more aerodynamic and to provide more efficient airflow into the CRF’s compact dual radiators. To keep the CRF250R looking fresh for a longer amount of time, the graphics are of the in-mold variety.

Honda has not yet set an MSRP for the 2018 CRF250R, but we expect it to be in dealerships this fall. For more information, check out Powersports.Honda.com.

073117-honda-2018_crf250r_action_01

2018 Honda CRF250R Specifications
MSRP TBA
Engine Type 249cc, liquid-cooled, single-cylinder, four-stroke
Valve Train DOHC, four-valve; 33mm intake, titanium; 26mm exhaust, titanium
Bore x Stroke 79.0mm x 50.9mm
Compression Ratio 13.9:1
Induction Programmed fuel-injection system (PGM-FI); 46mm Keihin throttle body
Ignition Full transistorized
Starter Electric w/ lithium-iron-phosphate battery
Driveline; Final Gearing #520 chain; 13T/48T
Transmission Constant-mesh 5-speed return; manual
Clutch Multiplate wet (5 springs)
Front Suspension 49mm fully adjustable leading-axle inverted telescopic Showa SPG coil-spring fork; 12.0 in. travel
Rear Suspension Pro-Link system; fully adjustable Showa single shock; 12.4 in. travel
Front Brake Single 260mm hydraulic disc
Rear Brake Single 240mm hydraulic disc
Front Tire Dunlop Geomax MX3S 80/100-21 w/ tube
Rear Tire Dunlop Geomax MX3S 120/90-19 w/ tube
Rake (castor angle) 27°22’
Trail 116mm (4.6 in.)
Length 85.9 in.
Width 32.6 in.
Height 50.2 in.
Seat Height 37.8 in.
Ground Clearance 12.9 in.
Wheelbase 58.3 in.
Fuel Capacity 1.6 gal.
Curb Weight* 238 lbs.
Color Red

073117-honda-2018_crf250r_startbutton
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073117-honda-2018_crf250r_radiator
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073117-honda-2018_crf250r_overhead
The CRF250R also features a new electric starter powered by a small, lightweight lithium-iron phosphate battery, same as the CRF450R. The design eliminates the need for a kickstarter.
073117-honda-2018_crf250r_mufflers
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The downdraft intake system found on the CRF250R is just like that of the CRF450R.
073117-honda-2018_crf250r_handlebar_rear
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The CRF250R now features a 49mm Showa coil spring fork instead of an air fork. The internals are a production version of Showa’s A Kit race suspension.
073117-honda-2018_crf250r_front_wheel_lt
073117-honda-2018_crf250r_front_brake_lt
073117-honda-2018_crf250r_front_
The CRF250R’s aluminum perimeter chassis is taken from the proven sixth-generation design introduced on the 2017 CRF450R. The frame offers a shorter wheelbase and better flex to help improve rear wheel traction.
073117-honda-2018_crf250r_fr34
073117-honda-2018_crf250r_forks
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073117-honda-2018_crf250r_exhaust_lt
In addition to double overhead cams, the 2018 CRF250R engine boasts larger titanium intake and exhaust valves, dual exhaust ports, and a much larger bore and shorter stroke than the 2017 CRF250R.
073117-honda-2018_crf250r_engine_headers_lt
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073117-honda-2018_crf250r_cam_chain
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073117-honda-2018_crf250r_action_01
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073117-honda-2018_honda_crf250r_cg_eng
In addition to double overhead cams, the 2018 CRF250R engine boasts larger titanium intake and exhaust valves, dual exhaust ports, and a much larger bore and shorter stroke than the 2017 CRF250R.
The double overhead cams actuate the valves through finger follower rocker arms. Honda has reversed the location of the cam timing gear and cam chain, placing it on the right side of the engine rather than on the left.
073117-honda-2018_honda_crf250r_cg__cut_eng
073117-honda-2018_crf250r_throttlebody
In addition to double overhead cams, the 2018 CRF250R engine boasts larger titanium intake and exhaust valves, dual exhaust ports, and a much larger bore and shorter stroke than the 2017 CRF250R.
073117-honda-2018_crf250r_static_01
073117-honda-2018_crf250r_lifestyle_02

2018 Honda CRF250R First Look appeared first on Motorcycle.com.

Source: http://ift.tt/Xzx9iy

Ford F-22 Raptor Goes for $300,000 at Auction

Inspired by a fighter jet, a one-off Ford F-22 Raptor commanded $300,000 at auction recently.

The one-off truck, named after the Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor, features a Whipple-intercooled 3.5-liter twin-turbo EcoBoost V-6 good for 545 hp and 660 lb-ft of torque.

Other modifications include a Modified Addictive Desert Design front suspension and bump stop kit, upgraded Alcon six-piston calipers with oversized rotors and high-friction pads, cat-back Borla exhaust system, Innov8 Racing custom forged beadlock wheels, and Falcon Wildpeak tires.

In addition to an off-road LED lighting system, the model also features DeBerti carbon fiber fender flares, hood, and fender vents.

With $300,000, you can very easily buy five regular Raptor trucks. The standard Raptor produces “just” 450 hp and 510 lb-ft of torque from its 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6.

The auction took place in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, at the Experimental Aircraft Association Gathering of Eagles. Since 2008, Ford has raised more than $3 million at the annual event that benefits youth aviation programs.
















Appropriately, the lucky new owner of the Ford F-22 Raptor is an Honorary Commander/Ambassador for the U.S. Air Force’s F-22 Squadron at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada.

The post Ford F-22 Raptor Goes for $300,000 at Auction appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

Source: http://ift.tt/LhoIaq

Ford F-22 Raptor Goes for $300,000 at Auction

Inspired by a fighter jet, a one-off Ford F-22 Raptor commanded $300,000 at auction recently.

The one-off truck, named after the Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor, features a Whipple-intercooled 3.5-liter twin-turbo EcoBoost V-6 good for 545 hp and 660 lb-ft of torque.

Other modifications include a Modified Addictive Desert Design front suspension and bump stop kit, upgraded Alcon six-piston calipers with oversized rotors and high-friction pads, cat-back Borla exhaust system, Innov8 Racing custom forged beadlock wheels, and Falcon Wildpeak tires.

In addition to an off-road LED lighting system, the model also features DeBerti carbon fiber fender flares, hood, and fender vents.

With $300,000, you can very easily buy five regular Raptor trucks. The standard Raptor produces “just” 450 hp and 510 lb-ft of torque from its 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6.

The auction took place in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, at the Experimental Aircraft Association Gathering of Eagles. Since 2008, Ford has raised more than $3 million at the annual event that benefits youth aviation programs.
















Appropriately, the lucky new owner of the Ford F-22 Raptor is an Honorary Commander/Ambassador for the U.S. Air Force’s F-22 Squadron at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada.

The post Ford F-22 Raptor Goes for $300,000 at Auction appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

Source: http://ift.tt/LhoIaq

Ford F-22 Raptor Goes for $300,000 at Auction

Inspired by a fighter jet, a one-off Ford F-22 Raptor commanded $300,000 at auction recently.

The one-off truck, named after the Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor, features a Whipple-intercooled 3.5-liter twin-turbo EcoBoost V-6 good for 545 hp and 660 lb-ft of torque.

Other modifications include a Modified Addictive Desert Design front suspension and bump stop kit, upgraded Alcon six-piston calipers with oversized rotors and high-friction pads, cat-back Borla exhaust system, Innov8 Racing custom forged beadlock wheels, and Falcon Wildpeak tires.

In addition to an off-road LED lighting system, the model also features DeBerti carbon fiber fender flares, hood, and fender vents.

With $300,000, you can very easily buy five regular Raptor trucks. The standard Raptor produces “just” 450 hp and 510 lb-ft of torque from its 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6.

The auction took place in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, at the Experimental Aircraft Association Gathering of Eagles. Since 2008, Ford has raised more than $3 million at the annual event that benefits youth aviation programs.
















Appropriately, the lucky new owner of the Ford F-22 Raptor is an Honorary Commander/Ambassador for the U.S. Air Force’s F-22 Squadron at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada.

The post Ford F-22 Raptor Goes for $300,000 at Auction appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

Source: http://ift.tt/LhoIaq

BMW Convertible Concept Likely Previews Z4 Successor

BMW and Toyota fans alike have waited eagerly for any updates on the forthcoming Z5/Supra sports car developed jointly by the two automakers. We’ve only seen the sports car in camouflaged, test-mule form as it underwent testing on the Nürburgring, but that might be about to change.

Thanks to a teaser from BMW, we’re getting our first glance at an open-air concept that likely previews the German-Japanese roadster ahead of its debut at this year’s Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. Additionally, the striking Concept 8 Series BMW showed in May at the 2017 Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este will be making its first appearance on North American soil at Pebble Beach.

Don’t get too worked up – regardless of what it looks like, it’s still a concept. Still, this might be our first peek at what the two automakers have been working on for a few years now, and serves as a solid preview of what we can expect to see. Purists hoping for a back-to-basics, stripped-down, simplified sports car will likely be disappointed, considering reports have emerged predicting a hybrid powertrain and an automatic transmission as the only drivetrain option.

As much as we’d like to believe this is the successor to the Z4, there’s a chance it isn’t. It could also be an 8 Series convertible concept. An i8 drop-top has been in development for a while, though this car’s proportions seem to hint at a front-engine layout. Look for more information closer to the car’s debut in August.

Source: BMW












 

The post BMW Convertible Concept Likely Previews Z4 Successor appeared first on Motor Trend.

Source: http://ift.tt/JPPTFe

BMW Convertible Concept Likely Previews Z4 Successor

BMW and Toyota fans alike have waited eagerly for any updates on the forthcoming Z5/Supra sports car developed jointly by the two automakers. We’ve only seen the sports car in camouflaged, test-mule form as it underwent testing on the Nürburgring, but that might be about to change.

Thanks to a teaser from BMW, we’re getting our first glance at an open-air concept that likely previews the German-Japanese roadster ahead of its debut at this year’s Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. Additionally, the striking Concept 8 Series BMW showed in May at the 2017 Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este will be making its first appearance on North American soil at Pebble Beach.

Don’t get too worked up – regardless of what it looks like, it’s still a concept. Still, this might be our first peek at what the two automakers have been working on for a few years now, and serves as a solid preview of what we can expect to see. Purists hoping for a back-to-basics, stripped-down, simplified sports car will likely be disappointed, considering reports have emerged predicting a hybrid powertrain and an automatic transmission as the only drivetrain option.

As much as we’d like to believe this is the successor to the Z4, there’s a chance it isn’t. It could also be an 8 Series convertible concept. An i8 drop-top has been in development for a while, though this car’s proportions seem to hint at a front-engine layout. Look for more information closer to the car’s debut in August.

Source: BMW












 

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2017 Lamborghini Huracan Performante Hits the Track on Ignition

Lamborghini took the already-stellar Huracán supercar and turned it into a record-breaking track weapon called the Performante. It’s definitely quick, but does it deliver the behind-the-wheel thrills of the original? Host Jonny Lieberman finds out on this episode of Ignition.

The 2017 Lamborghini Huracán Performante uses the same 5.2-liter V-10 as the standard model, but gets a power bump to 631 hp and 443 lb-ft of torque – up 29 hp and 30 lb-ft. The Performante also gets a revised seven-speed dual-clutch transmission, reprogrammed all-wheel-drive system, new aero features, and specially tuned magnetic shocks. It’s about 100 pounds lighter than a normal Huracán thanks to Forged Carbon composite parts. The Performante’s big aerodynamic party trick is its patented Aerodynamica Lamborghini Attiva (ALA) system. In the video, Lieberman explains how ALA differs from active aero systems on other supercars. ALA allows the Performante to have a fixed rear wing, and opens and closes flaps in the body to control drag and downforce. To demonstrate how this system works, Lieberman takes the Performante around Italy’s famed Imola circuit.

On the track, Lieberman finds that these improvements work in concert to create something that’s very different from your run-of-the-mill Huracán. But is the current fastest production car around the Nürburgring also a hoot to drive? Find out in the full episode below.























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