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Zenos E10R is fast, obscure and coming to America11/25/2015
British sports car manufacturer Zenos recently announced a new addition to its E10 lineup -- the E10R. The successor to the E10S receives more power and a step up in displacement. The 2.0-liter Ford Ecoboost I4 gets bumped to 2.3-liters and the power goes from 250-hp to an attention grabbing 350-hp. Considering the dry weight of the Zenos is 1,543 pounds, that should mean this thing is capable of solid 3.0-second 0-60 times. The E10R shares the E10S's chassis, but gets bigger brakes -- four-piston calipers sit at every corner clinging to the vented iron rotors. If you plan on tracking the car, that would probably be the place to do a personal upgrade. Double wishbone suspension is present front and rear, and is dampened by coilovers -- inboard dampening in the front, and outboard dampening in the rear.
The lightweight cockpit is carbon fiber, but features a steel roll bar and steel side protection. This all sounds great, but there is a major downside:
Alpina dials up the BMW M5 to 600 hp and 590 lb-ft11/24/2015
BMWs are inching up into Hellcat territory, at the least the ones coming out of Buchloe, in Bavaria. But it's not the 30 Yahre Edition M5 that was built by BMW itself earlier in the year that seeks to clean the clocks of AMG-powered Mercedes sedans -- tuning house Alpina has just taken the wraps off the new B5 Biturbo packing 600 and 590 lb-ft of torque.
How did this uber-sedan come about? The factory 30 Yahre Edition M5 wasn't exactly short on power before Alpina started tinkering with it, producing 560 hp and 500 lb-ft of torque with its turbocharged 4.4-liter V8 engine and sending that power to the rear wheels via a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. Alpina has kept the base engine, though in upgrading it the tuner, has also swapped in an eight-speed automatic transmission.
2016 Mercedes-Benz GLE450 AMG review
Killer crossover coupe?11/25/2015
The Mercedes-Benz GLE seems to be an answer to the question, “Shouldn’t Mercedes have something to compete with the BMW X6?”
I’m not sure who asked that question, or why, but here we are. Still, after a few days with the bubble-shaped AMG450, I have a little better sense of what this car is truly for.
I had the AMG for our first weekend of snow here in Michigan, and on those aggressive Pirelli P-Zeros, things got a little dicey. On my first expressway jaunt, when there were just a few slippery inches on the ground, the car felt sloppy. I looked at the window sticker and didn’t see the 4Matic notation, which made me even more nervous. I ended up putting the car in snow mode, which softened up the throttle, allowing me to use my normal pedal force without flying off the road. When I found it was 4Matic-equipped, I got a little more aggressive and found the 4WD and traction control system working in unity, no matter what I did with the right pedal. The porky curb weight of nearly 5,000 pounds surely helped it push through the slushy mess.
2017 Bentley Bentayga first drive11/23/2015
What is it?
It’s a winner, guaranteed.
With no hint of reticence, Bentley calls the 2017 Bentayga the “fastest, most powerful, most luxurious and most exclusive SUV in the world.” The Bentayga comes with 600 hp, 664 lb-ft of torque and a top speed approaching 200 mph. It can tow 7,700 pounds, has four ride heights and nearly 10 inches of ground clearance. It has Tesla-style autonomous driving electronics, the world’s first 48-volt automotive system and 90 separate ECUs processing 100 million lines of code.
Inside are the hides of four cows, 15 separate pieces of veneer, mineral glass gauge covers, milled aluminum accents and tolerances measured in tenths of a millimeter. All this is before options; they can include a self-winding Breitling Mulliner Tourbillon watch in place of the standard timepiece, cast of solid gold with a diamond-studded mother of pearl face, still to be priced but certainly in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. Just for the watch.