Powered by a naturally aspirated, motorsport-based 4.0-litre flat-six engine that develops 502 horsepower and 346 lb-ft of torque, the 2019 911 Speedster can sprint from zero to 60 mph in as little as 3.8 seconds, with a top track speed of 192 mph. To deliver a particularly engaging driving experience highly desired by purists, the 911 Speedster, with a 9000 rpm redline, is available exclusively with a GT Sport six-speed manual transmission.
Porsche Speedster models began in the United States in the early 1950s, as a lightweight, and less expensive option for the burgeoning California market and rapidly developing car culture. Speedsters combine open-top driving pleasure with incredibly distinctive driving dynamics, have been part of Porsche history since 1952.
The forefather of Porsche Speedster models, the 356 1500 America Roadster, had an aluminum body manufactured entirely by hand. It weighed about 20%, or approximately 350 pounds (160 kilograms), less than the 356 Coupe it was based on, and its top track speed of 108 miles per hour (175 km/h) with its 70-hp four-cylinder flat engine was impressive at the time.
Featuring slot-in curtain side windows, a folding top, lightweight bucket seats and no heater, this car, developed exclusively for the US market, embodied several key elements of the speedster design that would be repeated in future models.
By 2010, eight different production and special models bearing the "Speedster" name had been created. The 356 A 1500 GS Carrera GT Speedster represented a highlight in 1957, and the first 911 Speedster followed in 1988. Limited to just 356 units worldwide, the 997 generation Speedster built in 2010 was the latest model to be fitted with the famous designation.
The 2019 911 Speedster is the first developed by the Porsche Motorsport department in Weissach and is immediately recognisable as a Speedster. The low-cut front windshield and side windows as well as the manually operated lightweight fabric top are characteristic for a Speedster model and make the car stand out from other series production 911 models. The two streamliners atop the rear decklid are made from carbon fibre are yet another design highlight rooted in the model's history.
The interior of the 911 Speedster is characterised by a focus on the essentials of driving. Lightweight door panels with storage nets and door pulls emphasise the dedication to weight reduction. The standard black leather interior can be supplemented with red stitching for the dashboard and the "Speedster" designation in the headrests. With this option, the door pulls are also fitted in red, and the GT Sport steering wheel is decorated with a red 12 o'clock centre marker. The interior trim, which spreads to the gear shift knob as well as the door sill guards with "Speedster" model designation, is carbon fibre.
Underscoring its purist focus, extensive measures were taken to keep the weight of the new 911 Speedster down. The front luggage compartment lid, front fenders and rear decklid are made from carbon fibre composite material, while the front and rear fascia are constructed with lightweight polyurethane. The rear decklid, which covers the top when folded, is also made from carbon fiber composite and weighs just 22 pounds.
Standard Porsche Ceramic Composite Brakes (PCCB) save about 50% from the system weight with grey cast iron rotors. The fabric top does without any automated operation, save for the electrically-operated latch to lock and unlock it. Air conditioning is omitted in the interest of weight savings, but can be added as a no-cost option if the customer desires.
Finally, the six-speed manual transmission saves about nine pounds compared to the seven-speed manual transmission in other 911 Carrera models, and almost 40 pounds compared to a PDK dual clutch unit. With this clear focus on lightweight construction, the 2019 911 Speedster weighs just 3,230 pounds.
The 911 Speedster's race-bred powerplant is based on the on the one used in the 911 GT3 and GT3 RS models and represents the next generation of this engine. It has been enhanced with individual throttle bodies that make the throttle response sharper, similar to the ones found on the new 911 GT3 R race car. Higher fuel injection pressure and a new lightweight exhaust system, which saves about 22 pounds of weight compared to the 2018 911 GT3, are also unique to the new 911 Speedster.
The 2019 911 Speedster uses a chassis derived from the 911 GT3 models with a specifically-calibrated rear axle steering system and dynamic engine mounts to deliver a maximum amount of precision, stability and driving pleasure. 20-inch centre lock wheels painted in Satin Black are shod with Ultra High Performance (UHP) tires to offer high levels of grip, while standard PCCB (Porsche Ceramic Composite Brake) delivers very powerful and consistent braking performance.
The 2019 911 Speedster is available to order and has an MSRP of $274,500, not including a $1,250 delivery, processing and handling fee. It is expected to reach US dealers in late 2019. The optional Heritage Design Package designed by Porsche Exclusive Manufaktur, which offers many styling cues and design elements inspired by classic Speedster models from the 1950's, can be ordered for an additional $24,510.
Seat CEO Luca de Meo said, “The auto industry is undergoing a process of transformation and is facing the biggest challenge in its over 100 years of history. We are at our best moment and with these launches can look to hthe future with confidence and lead the transformation facing the sector.”
Seat is displaying its range at the motor show alongside all the Volkswagen Group brands in the same space in order to demonstrate the strength of the consortium and its vision of future mobility. During the Group Night, for the first time in the history of the motor show three gobal CEOs from the Volkswagen Group came together to talk about the future of mobility - Oliver Blume, Porsche CEO and Global Head of Production for the Volkswagen Group; Lamborghini CEO Stefano Domenicali and Luca de Meo, Seat CEO and highest representative of the companies of the Group in Spain.
The el-Born concept car is the first Seat that has been conceived as an electric vehicle and it is scheduled for market launch in 2020. Seat will be the Volkswagen Group’s second brand to make a model on the MEB platform, whose assembly line is set to turn out a new generation of vehicles based on the market’s most advanced electric and connectivity technology.
With a practical range of between 300 and 420 km thanks to its 58 kWh battery, this vehicle is ready to travel beyond urban limits. The battery is compatible with direct current superchargers of 100 kW; Thanks to this, the Seat el-Born will take the energy needed for at least 260km in only 30 minutes.
After just one year of operation as an independent brand, Cupra is presented the Formentor concept car in Barcelona, which is the first model it has developed. It is intended to take the brand into the future, equipped with a high-performance plug-in hybrid engine whose output is designed to comply with current performance and efficiency requirements. Its market launch in 2020 will signal the beginning of the brand’s electrification of commercial vehicles.
The Niro is powered by an efficient 1.6-litre GDi (Gasoline Direct injection) engine, twinned with either a 1.56 kWh lithium-ion polymer battery pack (Niro Hybrid models) or 8.9 kWh (for Plug-in Hybrid models). The Niro Plug-in Hybrid can achieve a pure electric driving range of 30 miles. Both the vehicles are equipped with a slick-shifting six-speed auto dual-clutch transmission, delivering more direct and immediate responses – and a more entertaining drive – than traditional electronic continuously-variable transmissions (e-CVT) found on other hybrids.
The refreshed design aligns the Hybrid and Plug-in Hybrid variants of the range with the appearance of the all-new all-electric e-Niro. While the new Niro retains its distinctive design and iconic ‘tiger-nose’ grille, new bumpers at the front and rear give it a more purposeful appearance and more confident stance on the road. The standard projection headlamps have been redesigned, incorporating Kia’s unique ‘ice-cube’ design with LED headlamps on the ‘4’ grade.
The Niro Hybrid is offered with redesigned 16-inch alloy wheels on grade ‘2’, with an all-new 18-inch dual-tone diamond-cut alloy wheel for grades ‘3’ and ‘4’. The Niro PHEV is available with newly-designed 16-inch alloy wheels with dark grey inserts, contributing to its unique stance and design.
Kia is also introducing a new 10.25-inch TFT-LCD widescreen for the main display on grades ‘3’ and ‘4’, with a 7.0-inch TFT Supervision instrument cluster for the driver included on grade ‘4’. The car is fitted with an 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system and 4.2-inch TFT instrument binnacle as standard on grade ‘2’.
The new Niro is among the first Kia models in Europe to offer the brand’s innovative UVO CONNECT telematics system, connecting drivers to the world around to provide them with invaluable information during a drive. Accessible via the 10.25-inch touchscreen and the owner’s smartphone, UVO CONNECT features a new Kia Live system, which uses its own SIM card to retrieve and update live data. This gives owners access to live traffic information, weather forecasts, points of interest, fuel prices, and details of potential on- and off-street parking – including price, location and availability.
The second element of the UVO system is the UVO App, designed for compatibility on Android and Apple smartphones. The app offers users peace of mind with a range of features to provide diagnostic data about their car and the trips they take. The app also enables owners to activate a range of remote functions and features remotely. Depending on country, users can remotely send route directions to their car before a journey, check the location of their vehicle, and access vehicle reports and diagnostic notifications.
The upgraded Niro range sees the introduction of a series of new active driver-assistive safety technologies. Already available with Adaptive Smart Cruise Control, the upgraded Niro Hybrid and Plug-in Hybrid are now offered with additional Stop & Go functionality. Adaptive Smart Cruise Control with Stop & Go follows the preceding vehicle and can now bring the Niro to a stop if traffic slows to a halt, bringing the car back up to speed as the car in front moves off.
Lane Following Assist is available for the first time on Niro Hybrid and Plug-in Hybrid models, following its introduction on the electric e-Niro. This feature operates between zero and 81mph. Other active safety technologies include Forward Collision-avoidance Assist, Lane Keeping Assist, Driver Attention Warning, High Beam Assist, Blind-spot Collision Warning, Rear Cross-traffic Collision Warning, and Intelligent Speed Limit Warning, in addition to the new electronic parking brake.
Paul Philpott, President of Kia Motors UK said: “The Niro has become a key growth driver for Kia in Europe and is a cornerstone of our electrified product strategy. Its cool crossover design, high versatility, and low emissions and running costs make it an attractive proposition for both private and business buyers.”
The number 3 is significant in two ways. On the one hand, it indicates the ID. as belonging to the compact segment, which is the class distinction in both internal and industry-wide classification systems. On the other, the ID.3 follows the Beetle and the Golf to introduce the third major chapter of strategic importance for the history of the brand.
“With the ID.3, we are starting from the centre, the Volkswagen brand’s core, in which the majority of the models and sales volume can be found. The number 3 also signals expandability into the segments above and below it. We have a lot in the pipeline,” said Jürgen Stackmann, Member of the Board of Management Volkswagen Brand for Sales, Marketing & After Sales, offering a preview of Volkswagen’s e-mobility campaign.
With this campaign, the brand is willing to become the number one brand globally by 2025, with more than 20 purely electrically driven models and more than a million vehicles sold annually, all of which being both networked and emission-free.
Every member of this model family will bear the name ID., which represents a new, independent series of products in the brand portfolio. While the Beetle once mobilised the masses, and the Golf as the class leader featured great innovations in each generation, the ID. will make e-mobility accessible to a broad spectrum of customers. The name ID. stands for intelligent design, identity and visionary technologies.
Following the launch of the ID.3, additional models will roll out, such as those previewed by the concept cars ID. Crozz, ID. Vizzion and ID. Roomzz, and which will in the future also be named with model numbers.
The design sketch of the new Škoda Superb depicts clean-cut front headlights, fog lights with a distinctive trim as well as the Škoda-typical radiator grille. The Škoda lettering at the rear instead of the brand logo makes its debut in a Škoda.
As the flagship of Škoda's model range, the Superb, whose history stretches back as far as the 1930s, boasts the brand’s latest innovations in terms of design, technology and functionality. The refined top model gives substance to Škoda's aspiration to offer vehicles of the highest quality that provide customers with an exceptional amount of space and numerous features from higher-tier segments.
The story of the Superb as the Škoda flagship begins back in 1934 with the original Superb at the plant in Mladá Boleslav. From 1947, Škoda produced the Superb as the first model at its Kvasiny plant. The name Superb derives from the Latin word ‘superbus’ meaning exceptional, excellent, or outstanding.
After more than a 50-year break, the modern Škoda Superb seamlessly took up the mantle of these characteristics in 2001. The modern Superb is now in its third generation and has become just as popular among families and private customers as it is as a comfortable business and fleet vehicle. In April 2017, the third generation of Škoda's flagship model surpassed the mark of one million cars produced.