1964 Honda S600 Appreciation

Stanley Yee on

The Honda S600 was the brainchild of company founder Soichiro Honda, who decided that his motorcycle company should start producing cars as well. The S600 evolved from the company’s line of S-roadsters - including the debut Honda automobile, the S360 - and became an important part of the company’s entry into the automotive world.

In the early 1960s, the world was in love with the roadster. Some of today’s most prized designs like the E-Type Jaguar and Lotus Elan were introduced in that time, and Honda decided to take what they had learned from building motorcycles and apply it to a lightweight roadster. The result evolved into the S600, a car which continues to influence Honda to this day. more

2015 Chevrolet Corvette Adds New 8-Speed Auto

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The 2015 Chevrolet Corvette will feature GM’s new 8-speed automatic transmission, offering improved acceleration and fuel economy. The new gearbox will replace the old 6-speed automatic unit, and purists will still be able to opt for the 7-speed manual.

It isn’t a double-clutch unit, but GM is adamant that the Corvette’s new 8-speed will shift just about as well as the best double-clutch designs. Shift times will be so short that the automatic will beat the manual transmission in a sprint to 60, albeit barely. more

2015 Subaru Legacy and Outback Earn Top Safety Pick+

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Subaru is apparently on top of its safety game for 2014. Two of its 2015 models, the Legacy and the Outback, have earned the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety's highest award possible, the 2014 Top Safety Pick +.

The Legacy and Outback join five other Subaru models to be worthy of safety awards from IIHS in 2014. Four have earned Top Safety Pick and three have earned Top Safety Pick +. more

McLaren P1 GTR Concept Unveiled at Pebble Beach

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With just under a year left until final production officially begins, McLaren unleashed the nostalgic, track-only P1 GTR concept that resembles the original F1 GTR that took the 1995 24 Hours of Le Mans race by storm. 

Unveiled at a private event at the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance event last weekend, the P1 GTR concept stunned viewers. It is based off of the McLaren P1 road car but has been fine-tuned to a higher level so that it can compete on the track. With no road legality limitations, the P1 GTR boasts a highly upgraded body and 83 more horsepower than the road car. more

Electric Renovo Coupe Debuts With Insane 1,000 Lb.-Ft of Torque
Ryan ZumMallen on

Among a sea of priceless, impeccably restored automobiles of the highest pedigree anywhere in the world, it was an upstart and unknown vehicle that captured hearts and minds at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance over the weekend. With any luck, they captured future buyers as well.

Renovo Motors made their grand debut at Pebble Beach, showing the striking Renovo Coupe that borrows the iconic Shelby Daytona Coupe design and fits it with a monstrous electric powertrain good for 1,000 lb.-ft of torque. Buzz around the Silicon Valley outfit is building as it appears Renovo may have built, as they claim, the first all-electric American supercar. more

Jaguar To Roll Out New InControl Infotainment With 2015 XE
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Already vital to the automaker because of the new architecture it will debut and the new segment it will enter, the upcoming Jaguar XE will also break new ground by being the first Jag to be equipped with an InControl infotainment system.

Jaguar has been a bit behind the times when it comes to technology for a while now, but are promising that the InControl system that will debut in the new XE sedan will change all that. Notable features include an 8-inch touchscreen, both Android and Apple smartphone apps and voice control. Is it everything it’s cracked up to be? more

Chrysler Group Appoints New Ram Truck and Alfa Romeo Leaders
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Chrysler Group LLC has appointed Reid Bigland as Head of Alfa Romeo Brand for the NAFTA region, and Robert Hegbloom as Head of Ram Truck Brand. Both positions are effective immediately as Chrysler Group continues to build its stake in the region.

As well as serving as Head of Alfa Romeo, Bigland will continue as Head of U.S. sales and as President and CEO of Chrysler Canada. His roles on the NAFTA Leadership Team and Fiat Chrysler Group Executive Council will continue as well. Hegbloom’s new position will add him to the list of members on the NAFTA Leadership Team. more

2015 Chevrolet Corvette Valet Mode Announced
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Corvette owners will soon get peace of mind when letting a complete stranger drive their car, thanks to the car’s new Valet Mode. Built into the Performance Data Recorder, Valet Mode will record video and data while a valet is behind the wheel.

No longer will Corvette owners fear a joyriding or clumsy valet, or at least not without evidence. What started as a track day recording device has quickly turned into a form of surveillance to keep a prized sports car from being used and abused by any pesky drivers. more

2015 GMC Sierra 3500 HD Victorious in Heavy Duty Challenge
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The GMC Sierra 3500 HD was chosen as the winner of the Ultimate Heavy Duty Challenge, which tested the newest 1-ton trucks against each other in practical scenario tests. After 19 rounds of testing and input from a panel of educated judges, the GMC was crowned the winner.

The 2014 Ultimate Heavy Duty Challenge stacked the GMC Sierra, Ford F350, and Ram 3500 against each other. All three trucks were equipped with diesel engines, dually rear axles, and 3.73 gearing as a standard baseline. The competition is held annually by Cars.com, PickupTrucks.com and MrTrucks.com, and this year's did not disappoint. more

Saleen FourSixteen Extends Performance of Model S
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Saleen is most known for being one of the top Mustang modifying companies in the business, but their new FourSixteen will look to electrify the market. Based on the Tesla Model S, the FourSixteen has been reworked from bumper to bumper, with new drivetrain components, aerodynamics, and interior.

“Tesla has created an entirely new class of American automobile,” said Steve Saleen, founder of Saleen Automotive, Inc. “There are many similarities to this and how Ford created the ‘pony car’ class in 1964 with the Mustang, which is how these vehicles stand out from the rest of the pack.” more

Motorsports Monday: Power Surges Ahead After Milwaukee Win
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IndyCar – ABC Supply Wisconsin 250: Will Power has had years where he drove spectacularly, but couldn’t find consistency. This year, he’s simply been good enough all year long, and it’s paying off in a big way.

The Australian drove his Chevrolet to the checkered flag at the Milwaukee Mile on Sunday, finishing ten spots ahead of teammate Helio Castroneves to grab a 39-point lead in the IndyCar standings with just two races remaining. more

2014 Volkswagen Touareg TDI Test Drive
Ben Lewis on

If you want a perfect example of constant, focused, improvement look no further than the Volkswagen Touareg.  For ten years, this midsize vehicle has offered the look and feel of a high-end European SUV at somewhat more reasonable prices.

And if you think your neighbors might wonder if you’ve gone snobbish with a new Porsche or Audi in your driveway, a nice VW badge puts you in the fun-but-smart mold that a lot buyers are happy to be in. more

Bentley Continental GT3-R Debuts at Pebble Beach
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Bentley has brought their new Continental GT3-R to Pebble Beach, commemorating the success of the recent Continental GT3 racing car. The GT3-R’s design was inspired by its racing counterpart, and will be the fastest accelerating Bentley ever built.

Only 300 examples of the Continental GT3-R will be sold, each one hand-built by Bentley’s craftsmen and motorsports division. Of the 300, just 99 units will be destined for the U.S. market, making it also one of the rarest Bentleys available today.

All examples of the Bentley Continental GT3-R will feature the same exterior design, painted in white with green graphics. A carbon fiber front splitter and rear wing will give the car downforce and stability at speed, emulating the aerodynamics of the GT3 car. Other details like the 21 inch wheels and the front grille will be painted in gloss black.

Under the hood of the GT3-R will be a 4 liter, twin turbocharged V8 producing 572 horsepower and 516 lb-ft of torque. Paired with shorter gearing and 220 lbs of weight loss, the GT3-R will vault from 0-60 in just 3.6 seconds, making it the fastest accelerating Bentley ever.

A Bentley would be nothing without comfort, and the GT3-R is no different. According to Bentley, the car is a GT cruiser with the performance of a race car, and the luxuriously appointed interior suggests the same. The new seat design features a mix of fine leather and diamond-stitched Alcantara. In the name of weight savings, the rear seats have been removed. Like the outside, green contrasts highlight the features of the GT3-R. Each of the 99 units coming to the U.S. will come with a numbered plaque to identify the car.

The Continental GT3-R will make its way around the different events around Monterey. Throughout the week, Bentley’s model lineup will be at their temporary setup in Pebble Beach. At The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering, the GT3-R will be shown with the GT3 race car. On Saturday, Dyson Racing will show their GT3 car in front of crowds at the Monterey Historic races at Laguna Seca; the weekend will end on Sunday with the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, where the pair of GT3s will make yet another appearance.

Bentley has already started to take orders on the Continental GT3-R, and will undoubtedly sell more before the end of the weekend. Priced at $337,000, the GT3-R will cost almost twice as much as the standard Continental GT, even priced above the flagship Mulsanne sedan. Deliveries will begin in the first quarter of 2015.


Visit the autoMedia.com Bentley Research Center for quick access to reviews, pricing, photos, mpg and more. Make sure to follow autoMedia.com on Twitter and Facebook. more

Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Waterspeed Honors Water Speed Record
Stanley Yee on

The Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Coupe Waterspeed Collection made its debut at The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering in Pebble Beach. The car was designed to commemorate Sir Malcolm Campbell’s water speed record set in 1937.

On September 2, 1937, Sir Malcolm Campbell piloted his Bluebird K3 boat 129.5 mph across the surface of Lake Maggiore in Italy. Powered by a Rolls-Royce R-Engine, Campbell’s record bested the existing records, which for years had been set in the United States. Rolls-Royce has chosen to build a limited run of the Phantom Drophead Waterspeed Collection, honoring the achievement. more