Honda Sports EV concept unveiled at Tokyo motor show

Honda Sports EV 1

Honda unveiled the surprisingly likable Urban EV at the recent Frankfurt motor show, and its looking like it was the first of a series of concepts as at this years Tokyo motor show Honda unveiled the Sports EV, a sleek coupe with similar styling accents to the little Urban EV. The Sports EV is an electric sports car designed to show where Honda is looking to go in the future.

Honda Sports EV 3The Urban EV was also announced to be going into production in 2019, the quick turnaround is a sign that the Sports EV could be expected as early as 2020, to head up Honda’s electric division. The Sports EV shares the same white paint scheme as the Urban and also carries over the simple design of the head and taillights. The Sports EV is similar in size to the Mazda MX5 leading people to believe it will be in a similar performance bracket rather than more powerful cars like the Mercedes SLC and the Jaguar XK.

Honda Sports EV 2Whilst no performance specs have been released for the Sports EV, Honda insiders have talked of a 150 mile range for the Urban so a similar spec is expected for the little sports car. The Sports EV joins Honda’s range of sports cars with the likes of the NSX and S660. The little electric sports car is a sign of where Honda is headed to, the increased pressure to release electric cars is threatening all car manufacturers and the Sports EV is what we should come to expect to see in the future.

Honda Sports EV 4On the whole I like the little Sports EV, just as I liked the Urban EV. Its styling takes much less inspiration from cars and more from things like the iPod with its smooth white finish with no aggressive styling or aerodynamic attachments, maybe Honda could learn a thing or to and transfer these ideas to the current Civic Type R.

What do you think of the Honda’s family of electric vehicles, let us know in the comments.

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Frankfurt Motor show 2017 round up

The Frankfurt motor show is going on right now in Germany, with the great and the good from around the car world coming together to give us a look at what the showrooms will look like in 2018 and beyond. There are far too many cars to go through to list them all so I thought I would list my highlights from Germany’s premier motor show.

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  1. Kia Proceed

Not to sound like a school report but Kia have improved greatly over the last decade, their growth has been impressive and turned them into one of the companies to look out for in the future along with Hyundai and Skoda. The Proceed is yet another amazingly designed concept car that follows the likes of the Stinger and Novo cars from previous years. The striking sweeping rear end follows the likes of the Mercedes CLA Shooting Brake in its aggressive approach to an estate car.

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  1. Honda Urban EV

Whilst the Honda Urban EV is clearly a concept at the moment its inclusion on this list is purely because of the attention it drew at the show. The Honda Urban EV is a future electric car expected in 2019, whilst no specs have been revealed people are amazed by the way it looks both modern and retro at the same time. The looks have been compared to everything from a VW Golf MK1, to a Peugeot 205 and I even see a little Nissan Cube creeping in at the front there.

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  1. BMW X7

This thing is big, like really big. The X7 is an upcoming luxury SUV for BMW expected in 2018. The BMW X5 is a big car already but the X7 is even bigger at 5 metres long. BMW are trying to take on the giants in America from Lincoln Cadillac and Ford. But on European roads the X7 will dwarf just about anything.

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  1. Borgward Isabella

Back in 2015 Borgward returned with the BX7 an SUV designed to take on the Mercedes M class and BMW X5, and they pretty much faded away after that. But now they have returned again to Frankfurt to unveil the concept for their prestigious Isabella. Named after their car from back in the 50’s the Isabella is a 4 door electric car, and whilst no new specs have been revealed Borgward did say they wanted it to be one of their flagship models. Its unlikely this new Borgward adventure will succeed as they are fairly forgettable and have a silly name, but prove me wrong Borgward.

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  1. Mercedes AMG Project One

The star of the show that drew all the eyes and stares from all around the arena was the Project One. The Formula 1 powered hybrid monster is set to take to the roads in early 2019. This new Mercedes monster looks like a combination of the McLaren F1 and Mercedes CLK GTR (and even looks a bit like a Spyker from above). The Project One is going to be up against tough competition in the Aston Martin Valkyrie in the hyper car battle to end all battles. This 1000BHP monster hybrid uses the engine from Lewis Hamilton’s Formula 1 car to take it to a top speed of more than 218MPH and from 0-124MPH in 6.0 seconds, certainly an amazing machine set to take the world by storm.

What were your highlights from the 2017 Frankfurt motor show, let us know in the comments.

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The Geneva Motorshow 2017

So the Geneva Motor show is in full swing and the great and the good of the motor industry are out in force at the Swiss event. If I were to go through everything at the show I would be here for three days straight so I thought I would just bring you the highlights of the greatest show on the motoring calendar.

McLaren 720S

McLaren 720S

McLaren are releasing cars thick and fast right now and they have been working hard on the new replacement for the 650S. So here we have the long rumoured 720S. Boasting a new 4.0 litre twin turbocharged V8 engine (upped from the 3.8 in the 650S) the 720S has 710BHP and 770Nm of torque. McLaren tasked themselves with doubling the aerodynamic efficiency of the 650S for the new 720S. Which has led to the distinctive look of the new car with its hidden headlights and aerodynamic streaks down the side, certainly an impressive machine to behold. Prices start from £208,000 and its on sale now.

Porsche Panamera Sport Turismo

Porsche Panamera Sport Turismo

Finally they did it, the Panamera estate has been in development for what seems like years now. There were spy shots and camo cars but finally Porsche revealed the Sport Turismo. The extra boot accessory gives the Sport Turismo 20 litres more boot space over the original and also means the Panamera has room for an extra seat in the back, now making it a five seater, prices start at £84,000 and go all the way up to £138,000 through all models from the S to the big bad Turbo model.

Honda Civic Type R

Honda Civic Type R

Its seems like just last week the new Type R was rolling into showrooms but Honda already have a new version ready for the new shape Civic, and while I’m not a Civic fan I can still safely say that the new Type R Civic is hideous. Looks aside though the new Type R has 316BHP, ten more than the previous model but still 30 less than the out going Ford Focus RS. Honda still plan on going back to the Nurburgring to try and break records again.

Bentley EXP12 Speed 6

Bentley EXP12 Speed 6

One of the more beautiful cars on the show floor is the new Bentley EXP12 Speed 6. Whilst only being a concept of things to come from the company, the EXP12 is still paving the way forward in being a fully electric Roadster, an area even Tesla seem to have left well alone. The EXP12 isn’t expected to make production any time soon but after a good response from press and the public Bentley may be forced to change their mind on the subject.

Aston Martin Valkyrie

Aston Martin Valkyrie

We at long last have a new name for the AM RB001 hyper car from Aston Martin and Red Bull, the new car called the Valkyrie will have over 900BHP from a naturally aspirated 6.5 litre V12. The Valkyrie uses an F1 style ERS system to harvest Kinetic Energy from braking. Only 150 road models will ever be made, along with 25 track only versions costing in the region of £2-3 million with deliveries expected to take place in early 2019.

What are your favourites from Geneva 2017, Sound off in the comments.

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Top 5 convertibles for a summer of topless fun

So summer is finally here, are we must grab hold of that sunlight while it lasts, because we know what the UK is like. But you don’t want to be all cooped up in a hard top during these gorgeous summer months, you want to be outside with a million miles of headroom and a fun sports car to spend your time in, so here are my top five cheap convertibles for a summer of fun.

Toyota MR2

  1. Toyota MR2

Now the MR2 has always been a rather forgotten little convertible, far over shadowed by its Japanese brother the Mazda MX5, but it shouldn’t be, because the MR2 is a great little car for the summer, fun to drive and still nice to look at, it combines everything you want in a sports car. Although later models didn’t come with some essentials, like a boot which is insane these days, its still a great car, and to be honest one I think Toyota could do with bringing back.

Honda S2000

  1. Honda S2000

The Honda S2000 may be long gone and dead, but it can still hang with even the newest of the convertibles, and is likely to be a classic someday. More powerful and bigger than the MX5 it still managed to keep the tight handling and fun of it. Again this is certainly a car that could be brought back by Honda, and its hard to understand why they haven’t yet. I wouldn’t be surprised if we see a new one in the coming years, but in the meantime you can pick up an old one for less than £5,000.

Porsche Boxster

  1. Porsche Boxster

if you were one of those people who thought the only reason you bought a Boxster was because you could afford a 911, then you missed out on probably one of the best cars of the last 10 years, the Boxster was fun as hell to drive, yet comfortable enough to be a daily driver. The Boxster is certainly in the 911 shadow though, and now even the Caymans, I even had someone come and ask me why Porsche don’t do a convertible Cayman. I swiftly slapped them for forgetting a great little car, then pointed them in the direction of the nearest Porsche dealer.

Fiat Barchetta

  1. Fiat Barchetta

The Fiat Barchetta is a fantastic car, plain and simple. I could just stop there but I don’t want to. The Barchetta is a car you love, you know it has flaws like being front wheel drive, and being quite unreliable. But you completely forget about those flaws, when your bumbling down the road, with the sun in the sky, the open road laid out in front of you, and your in a bright yellow Italian sports car, perfect day? I think so.

Mazda MX5

  1. Mazda MX5

Of course it was, there’s not much about the MX5 I could say that hasn’t been said before, I could tell you about the great handling, or the pretty looks, or the way it harks back to the classic British sports cars of the 50’s and 60’s. but all you need to know is that you need to drive own, it is a bucket list for about the price of a bucket. Even as it gets older Mazda still find a way to keep it at the top, in price spec looks and handling the MX5 is number one on any list.

Honda to take on the MX5 with new S2000

 

 

Honda S2000

Honda are in talks to make a new S2000 to take on the likes of the Mazda MX5 and the Fiat 124. In a new report by Autocar Honda engineers are said to have met with UK S2000 owners to find out what they should bring to a new roadster.

Honda S2000

Honda its simple lightweight, front engined, rear drive, nippy handling, and most of all make it cheap. The new S2000 doesn’t have to be a rocket ship, just so long as its fun to drive nothing else will matter. We said goodbye to the old S2000 in 2009 due to a lack of sales, but the cheap sports car has made a comeback in recent years. With the Toybaru GT86/BRZ and the new MX5, along with the Alfa 4C, now would be the perfect time for Honda to get back in the game. I wouldn’t be surprised if sooner or later we will see a completely new Lotus Elise as the past few cars have merely been a repackaging of the car we had more than 5 years ago.

Honda S660.jpg

Honda could rule the sports car sector if they get this right. The Honda S660 has proved to be a fantastic little sports car (Please Honda bring it to the UK) and all Honda would really need to do is upscale it. But I hope they don’t, I am one for tradition as readers may have noticed and the S2000 along with its competitors has always harked after the classic British sports car, cars like the Triumph TR5 and the MG B, bring us a cheap little sports car that handles brilliantly and looks great that all we ask.

The Return of the Sports Car, Isn’t it brilliant

2015 Mazda MX5

It’s a great time to be a driver isn’t it, there are so many great cars out there right now, and it seems we are getting a return of some truly brilliant cars, the sports cars. Sports cars have waned in popularity over the years, people are choosing to go for more practical hot hatches rather than the fun two-seaters. We saw the death of the Honda S2000 in 2009 and the MR2 gave up 2 years before that. Mazda had also appeared to stop bothering with the MX5 for a while.

GT86

But now I am happy to say the sports car is back, we of course have the fantastic Toyota/Subaru/Scion GT86/BRZ/FRS, and then we have the new MX5 next year to look forward to. We really are seeing a return of the true greats, however the Germans appear to be letting it slip the Z4 is starting to look a little tired, and the SLK has been overtaken completely, even by other cars within the Mercedes range.

Alfa 4C

The Italians are trying again as well with the Alfa Romeo 4C, which although being hilariously over priced is fantastic fun to drive. There are also rumours hovering around that Abarth may announce a new car this year based on the failed Mazda Alfa collaboration, and personally I think a modern RWD Barchetta would really energise the current Fiat line up which hasn’t had a truly fun sports car since the original Barchetta died back in 2005.

Cayman

We do appear to have three top contenders for the crown of top sports car now, which has been severely lacking in recent years, the new MX5 will undoubtedly be there for Japan the Italians will wield the 4C and the Germans can bring the excellent handling of the Porsche Cayman. Three great cars for the modern era of sports cars we can only hope that the sports car doesn’t go away like it did before as they are some of the most fun cars you can drive.

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The New Honda NSX

New NSX

So the new Honda/ Acura NSX another car revealed at the recent Detroit Motor show, and Honda fans are going crazy about it. However I don’t think there’s much to shout about. 600 BHP from a Hybrid engine and AWD as well what super car isn’t pushing out those numbers. Its less than the P1 and 918 but more than the Audi R8. However Audi are announcing a new R8 very soon so I think Honda should be worried. Also I don’t think the styling is that impressive either dare I say it boring, its almost looks like a combination of the old McLaren MP4-12C and the current R8 two not that exciting cars to look at.

old nsx

I also don’t think that the new NSX will carry the same prestige of the old one, the old NSX had a chassis tuned by the late great Ayrton Senna something the new car knows nothing about. I don’t think there is a way that the new car could feel the same as the old one, the old NSX was fantastic to drive, you could put it where you want it both on the road and on the track. And that was another great thing about the NSX it was one of the few cars that you could drive everyday nowadays the only cars that manage that are the R8 and the 911 both stiff competition for the new boy.

Huracan

Will it succeed maybe but I don’t think the new Honda NSX will achieve the same successes that the old car did. There is just too much competition in the current car climate. The new NSX has to beat out the 458 the R8 the 911 the new McLaren 650S and the fantastic Lamborghini Huracan. Why would you look over all those prestigious names and say yes I’m going to buy a Honda.

The Paris Autoshow

So the Paris Autoshow is going on right now an occasion where all auto makers show off there new stuff there everything from a new Mazda MX5 to a new Lamborghini I’ll attempt to show you everything interesting but I may miss something let me know in the comment if I do.

Asterion exterior Asterion interior

So first of all the New Lamborghini Asterion (concept) is it just me or are car makers trying to make all their new cars impossible to say it all started with the Huayra and now Lamborghini’s got the bug. Lambo’s new car has got on the hybrid band wagon as well with a 5.2 litre V10 from the Huracan and two electric motors giving this incredible car 907BHP, are you listening Ferrari and with the Asterion you get an incredible looking interior as well.

VW XL

Then there is the new VW XL Sport this great looking car has a 197BHP V twin form a Ducati of all places. Now the car is based on the super efficient VW XL1, which means it weighs a micro 870KG and gets from 0-62 in 5.7 seconds topping out at 168MPH. this car was built to celebrate VWs 200 Millionth car (now that’s a lot of Golfs) and that is quite frankly terrifying.

image

Another car I completely forgot to write about at launch was the Mercedes AMG GT now this is Mercedes attempt to take on Porsche’s 911 and the Jaguar F-Type but sadly it replaces the SLS AMG one of my favourite cars of all time. The Top AMG GTS has a 4 litre twin turbo V8 giving you just over 500BHP and a top speed electronically limited say Mercedes to 193MPH.

Civic Type R

Now I have to say I’m not a massive fan of the Civic Type R I think there are much nicer cars for the same price. The Type R always struck me as a yobos car screeching round an empty car park at 3 in the morning. And I’ll be honest the new one seems no different with a 2 litre engine giving us 276BHP. (not as much as the now ancient Focus RS)prices will be announced early in 2015 when it goes on sale.

tt convertable

The final car I’m going to talk about is the Audi TT now we saw the standard version a few months ago but now they’ve shown off the headless version (convertible) and it looks much more California cruiser than balls out sports car which ill be honest does disappoint me. Of course the standard engines are carried over from the hard top and all that usual crap. Prices start at £31,000

Now I know there were many more cars than just these 5 like our old friend the MX5 and the Jag XE and even the new Ford Mondeo but I didn’t have time to cover them all sorry.

Second Cars

People often compare their first cars saying which are good and which are bad.  But nobody seems to talk about their second cars, this is generally because people have boring cars after the unusual excitement of their first cars (unusual as generally it’s a 1- litre Vauxhall Corsa or Fiat Seicento) so after looking through loads of cars for my own second car I compiled this list.

  1. Ford Fiesta Zetec S

ImageThis is my personal favourite as you can pick them up dirt-cheap and they are fun as hell handle excellently but still have great fuel economy. People often can’t afford the 1.6-engined Fiesta’s insurance but generally it’s a lot cheaper for your second car.

2. Honda Civic Type R

ImageA lot more expensive than the Ford to buy, insure and run the Type R is also quicker, and for those of us who like to modify our cars there are thousands of parts out their for the Civics.

3. BMW 318i

ImageThis is also a favourite of mine for the money you’ll have you will probably have to get an original model. But don’t worry this is the best one it’s the best looking and most fun to drive due to the lightweight body and decent power from the 1.8 engine

4. Audi A4

ImageMuch more understated than the BMW and probably the most expensive car on my list for everything but you can’t beat the Audi for outright performance and reliability the Germans certainly know how to make a Car.