The Aston Martin Rapide is a four-door, high-performance sports car that was introduced to the public by British luxury marque Aston Martin in early 2010. The Rapide name is an allusion to the Lagonda Rapide, a 4-door saloon manufactured by Lagonda, which is now part of Aston Martin. The latest iteration of the Rapide is the firm’s first four-door fastback saloon since the Lagonda was discontinued in 1989.
Based on the Aston Martin DB9, the first cars rolled off production lines in May 2010. With a starting price of US$206,120 the Rapide is powered by a 5.9-liter 12-cylinder engine rated at 550 hp and mated to an 8-speed automatic transmission. It is rear-wheel drive and has a top speed of 188.5 mph. The zero to 60 mph dash takes 5.3 seconds.
The 458 Speciale is by far the best performing 458 Italia. The cars can be distinguished by their vented hood, redesigned bumpers, finned side sills, taller rear spoiler, and forged wheels. The updates include aerodynamics designed by the Ferrari Styling Centre in collaboration with Pininfarina. Ferrari engineers also tweaked the V8 engine, with power boosted to 597 hp at 9,000 rpm and 398 lb-ft of torque at 6,000 rpm. The electronic systems were likewise updated, including side slip angle control to improve control on the limit. The car was unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 2013 with a starting price of US$243,090.
The Porsche 918 Spyder is a mid-engined plug-in hybrid sports car. It is powered by a naturally aspirated 4.6-liter eight-cylinder engine generating 599 hp, with two electric motors producing an additional 275 hp for a combined output of 874 hp and 944 lb-ft of torque. The car’s 6.8 kWh lithium-ion battery pack can deliver an all-electric range of 12 miles under the five-cycle tests of the EPA. The 918 Spyder has a top speed of 211 mph.
The Alfa Romeo 4C Spyder was introduced showing a pre-production prototype at the Geneva Motor Show in 2014. The stock engine is a turbo-four cylinder rated at 237 hp and mated to a 6-speed automatic gearbox. The 4C Spyder shares its engine with the Coupé version but has different external parts like the headlights, engine hood, exhaust, and a roof section with a removable panel. Top speed is quoted at 160 mph and acceleration at 4.5 seconds to 62 mph.
The Mulsanne is a luxury car with a starting price of US$303,700. It was named after the Mulsanne Corner of the Le Mans racing circuit. The cars are manufactured by Bentley Motors Ltd in England. The Mulsanne is powered by a 6.75-liter twin-turbo V8 coupled to an 8-speed automatic gearbox. It features a leather-lined interior and has a top speed of 190 mph. Gas mileage has been rated at 11 mpg (city) and 16 mpg (highway).
The Corvette Z06 is the fastest production Corvette ever built by Chevrolet. Nicknamed the “Big Nasty,” it boasts a top speed of 200 mph and can go from zero to 60 mph in 3.0 seconds. Owners who upgraded to the 8-speed automatic from the 7-speed manual get even faster zero to 60 mph time. The stock engine is a supercharged 6.2 liter V-8 capable of blasting out 650 hp and 650 lb-ft of torque.
The Lamborghini Aventador is a mid-engined sports car that was launched on February 28, 2011 at the Geneva Motor Show, roughly five months after its initial introduction in Sant’Agata Bolognese. It was meant to succeed the aging Murciélago as Lamborghini’s new flagship model. The stock engine is a 6.5 liter, 691 hp V-12 bolted to a 7-speed automatic with all-wheel drive. By March 2016, about 5,000 cars have been built, taking Lambo five years to achieve this feat.
The Jaguar E-Type is a historic British sports car, known as the Jaguar XK-E in the North American market.It was manufactured by Jaguar Cars Limited between 1961 and 1975. At a time when most cars came with drum brakes, live rear axles, and lackluster performance, the E-Type barged into the automotive scene with monocoque construction, rack and pinion steering, disc brakes, independent front/rear suspension, a top speed of 150 mph and a sub-7 second 0-60 time.
The Zonda S is one of the finest Italian sports cars ever produced. It was offered in 2-door coupes and roadster versions, and the main material used for construction was carbon fiber. The Zonda S is powered by a 7.0-liter AMG-tuned variant of the engine generating 540 hp. It can go from standstill to 62 mph in 3.7 seconds and complete the quarter mile in 11.3 secs. Pagani only built 15 7.0-liter cars during the entire production run.
The Dodge Viper American Club Racing (ACR) model was unveiled in 1999. It is one of the fastest Vipers ever built and came with suspension and engine enhancements aimed at maximizing performance in autocross and road racing environments. The engine is an 8.4 liter V-10 that thumps out 645 hp and 600 lb-ft of torque. Weight was reduced by more than 23 kg by stripping the cabin and discarding non-essential components. These cars have an “ACR” badge and rode on 20-spoke BBS wheels.
The Bentley Continental Flying Spur is a luxury sedan powered by a twin-turbo V8 rated at 500 hp and 488 lb-ft of torque. Auto shoppers can opt to upgrade to a twin-turbo 6.0-liter W-12 that increases power output to 616 hp and 590 lb-ft of torque. All versions of the car are equipped with an 8-speed automatic gearbox and all-wheel drive. Top speed has been pegged at 183 mph and the 0-60 mph sprint is completed in 4.2 seconds.
The Maserati GranTurismo is a 2-door, 4-seat coupé that shares the platform of the Quattroporte V and parts of the Ferrari Scaglietti and 599 GTB. The standard version has a 4.2 liter V8 that was designed in conjunction with Ferrari with 405 PS and automatic ZF six-speed transmission. Maserati also offers a convertible version equipped with a 6-speed automatic gearbox with manual shifting mode. The car can accelerate from zero to 60 mph in 4.7 seconds.
The Huracán is a sports car that succeeded Lamborghini’s sales leader and most produced car, the Gallardo. It made its debut at the 2014 Geneva Auto Show, and was released in the second quarter of the same year. With a starting price of $240,745 it was labelled as Lamborghini’s ‘entry-level’ sports car. It is powered by a 5.2 liter V10 rated at 610 hp and bolted to a 7-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox with rear-wheel drive.
The Audi A8 is a 4-door luxury sedan produced since 1994. It has been offered in short- and long-wheelbase versions and with both front- or permanent all-wheel drive. Renowned for being the first mass-market vehicle with an aluminium chassis, the A8 is powered by a super-charged V6 rated at 333 horsepower. It has a top speed of 155 mph and the stock car can go from zero to 60 mph in 5.5 seconds.
The Corvette Stingray Convertible is one of the finest sports cars on the market today. It is powered by a 6.2 liter V-8 engine that blasts out 455 hp and 460 lb-ft of torque. An 8-speed automatic is now offered in addition to the standard 7-speed manual. The car carries a starting price tag of US$56,395 before dealer options are added to the cost. It has a top speed of 181 mph and can accelerate from 0-60 in 3.7 seconds.
The Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG is a front-engine, two-seater luxury supercar developed and designed in-house by Mercedes-AMG. The car, with the iconic gull-wing doors, was the successor to the high-end SLR McLaren. It is extremely fast, thanks to its 6.2 liter V8 engine rated at 583 hp bolted to a 7-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox with rear-wheel drive. The car was Mercedes-Benz’s last naturally aspirated engine. It has a top speed of 196 mph can go from 0-60 mph in 3.2 seconds.
By Top Gear
The Prius gets better in the areas it needed to. Fresh-feeling cabin, urban economy, powertrain.
By Adil Khan
For decades, people have been speculating on topics ranging from car colour affecting insurance premiums to outlandish service intervals. You might ask yourself why these misconceptions exist and where these myths come from. It’s partially due to the lack of transparency in the industry itself as well as the fact that most people find the world of cars to be a little confusing. Whatever the reason, we’re debunking five of the silliest misconceptions about cars, once and for all.
By Craig Jamieson
Ah, the Skyline. Against a skyline. Nice.
The Skyline, in our opinion, is the car that made Nissan.
Never mind that it was actually invented by Prince – no, not the ‘Purple Rain’ one, the Japanese car manufacturer, which merged with Nissan in the 1960s. Nissan kept the excellent ‘Skyline’ name – and the somewhat suspect ‘Gloria’, but we digress.
The Skyline nameplate dates all the way back to the late 1950s, but it’s the 1989 R32 Skyline GTR that really put Nissan on the map. Even though there had been quite a few highlights in the range over the years – the original 1969 GTR, for instance, and the R31 GTS-R – the R32 left an indelible mark, both on the road and in motorsport.
Families have moved on from the family sedan.
Looking at sales trends, soccer fields and school drop-off lines it’s clear that today’s family car is actually an SUV. And the family-friendliest vehicle of them all, the minivan, continues to appeal with its purpose-built practicality.
As SUVs have grown more comfortable and more efficient over the years, families and car shoppers in general have demonstrated an increasing preference for the elevated driving position, superior cargo versatility and higher profile of SUVs. Whether it’s the sliding doors and cavernous interior of a minivan or the high-riding nature and available all-wheel drive of an SUV, each of these vehicles is simply more functional as a family car than a traditional sedan.
~ Best 2-Row SUVs for Families
2017 Honda CR-V
Totally redesigned for 2017, the CR-V is the best-selling SUV in the country and one of our most awarded cars every year.
By Robert Liwanag
Motor Company's futurist shares six automotive trends that will shape the car
industry this year.