SEMA: 2009 Jetta TDI SportWagen

It’s all about diesel models for Volkswagen who not only announced the launch of the Jetta 2.0 TDI racing series (see here) but the German carmaker also showcased a slightly modified version of the 2009 Jetta SportWagen. Powered by a 2.0L Clean Diesel TDI, delivering 140 horsepower and 235 ft.-lbs. of torque, the SEMA Show station is finished in custom paint and graphics.

The SportWagen also sits on 19 inch Sportec Wheels and Yokohama tires wrapped around an upgraded Brembo brake kit while its underpinnings were upgraded by H&R Springs. Nice try, but despite the upgrades, we still can’t digest the duller than dull rear end. -Image gallery after the jump



read more "SEMA: 2009 Jetta TDI SportWagen"

Civette: RWD Honda Civic With Corvette Powertrain!


It’s about time we saw some… serious tuning today. We’re sure that most of you remember the story we posted back in June about the Civette project, which concerned fitting a 2000 Chevrolet Corvette V8 powertrain into a 1996 Honda Civic hatchback (doesn’t ring a bell?, click here). Well, the project is finished and to prove that all went well, the owner has circulated a video of the V8 powered, rear-wheel drive Civic hatch. Think if we asked nicely, he’d let us play around a bit?
read more "Civette: RWD Honda Civic With Corvette Powertrain!"

SEMA Show: Hyundai Elantra Concept by INCUS

Hyundai might not be our favorite carmaker when it comes to design, but we have to admit that this Elantra concept doesn't look so bad. The 4door sedan was decked out with original Hyundai aftermarket accessories by the Hyundai's sister parts company, INCUS. The Elantra features concept INCUS parts, including a body kit, 17-inch forged alloy wheels, custom mesh grille, suspension and dual exhaust. Inside the concept is equipped with a two-tone, leather-suede trim that covers the sports seats, the steering wheel and the door panels. -Image gallery after the jump

read more "SEMA Show: Hyundai Elantra Concept by INCUS"

2009 Toyota Matrix Revealed At SEMA Show

As promised, Toyota unveiled the second-generation Corolla Matrix along (along with the 2009 Corolla Sedan, see here) at the 2007 SEMA Show. According to Toyota, development of the 2009 Matrix focused on sportier looks with enhanced interior utility and improved dynamic performance. Like the new Corolla sedan, the Matrix will be available from February 2008 with two engine options, a 132 Hp 1.8-liter unit and a 158 Hp 2.4-liter engine. Both engines will be offered with a five-speed manual transmission, and either four- or five-speed automatic transmissions. -Details & image gallery after the jump








PRESS RELEASE: October 31, 2007 – Las Vegas - Toyota Motor Sales (TMS), U.S.A., Inc., unveiled the all-new second-generation Corolla Matrix at a press conference today at the 2007 Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show.

The Toyota Matrix, the sporty five-door vehicle that helped redefine the concept of a crossover utility vehicle, has been redesigned for the 2009 model year to offer performance that matters for driver enjoyment.

"The Matrix concept was based on blending the functionality of an SUV, the style, image and performance of a sports car with the affordability of a subcompact sedan," said Tim Morrison, Toyota Division corporate marketing manager. "For 2009, it’s all that, and more. It may have the body of a five-door hatch, but it comes with the soul of a two-door sports car."

Development of the 2009 Matrix focused on greater exterior coupe-like styling with enhanced interior utility and improved dynamic performance. It was made wider with a lower stance than the current model while maintaining its interior space. The result is a sporty, dynamic shape that contains room for five people to ride in comfort. As a result of significant changes to the Matrix’s profile, the theme is flowing and dynamic. The design expresses a low center of gravity, and coupe-like style with a fun-to-drive image. From the rear, the Matrix has rounded rear windows and continuous character lines that run from the front grille to the A-pillar.

Matrix will be available in three grades – Standard, S and the XRS. And Matrix will offer the option of all-wheel drive (AWD) with the S grade. The S and XRS models integrate a front underbody spoiler with a large mesh fog lamp bezel and rear underbody spoiler. A rear deck spoiler will be standard for all XRS models.

The Matrix interior is completely redesigned to enhance driving enjoyment, comfort and utility.

Seats have been redesigned to accommodate the vehicle’s new lower profile while maintaining the expected high comfort levels, and seat positions were lowered slightly to maintain appropriate headroom. As a result, cabin space remains equal to that of the previous Matrix.

A new three-spoke steering wheel enhances the rest of the new Matrix interior. XRS models come standard with a leather-trimmed steering wheel that also includes spoke-mounted audio controls and hands-free Bluetooth® capability when equipped.

The driver and front passenger are treated to comfortable new sport seats, with seat-mounted side airbags. A fold-down seatback table will be available for the front passenger’s seat, enhancing interior utility on S and XRS. A movable and removable cup support element for the front center console helps provide versatile storage area and convenience. The cup holder area can be used as a tray when the divider is removed.

For rear-seat passengers, expanded front-to-back couple distance helps to provide additional room and comfort. A folding seat with a 60/40 split includes a middle-seat headrest for the fifth passenger.
The Matrix is equipped with a new, high-efficiency air-conditioning system with larger vents for directional accuracy and offers reduced power consumption and improved heating and cooling.

The 2009 Matrix offers the choice of two different engines, a five-speed manual transmission, and either four- or five-speed automatic transmissions.

A 16-valve, 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine will produce 132 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 128 lb.-ft. of torque at 4,400 rpm. The engine will feature Dual VVT-i (Variable Valve Timing with intelligence) on both the intake and exhaust camshafts that helps it achieve outstanding performance and economy.

Estimated EPA fuel economy ratings are 26/32 city/highway mpg for manual transmission models and 25/31 for the automatic transmission model powered by a 1.8-liter engine.

For those who crave just a bit more horsepower and torque, the Matrix offers a 16-valve DOHC 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine with VVT-i that will produce 158 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 162 lb.-ft. of torque at 4,000 rpm.

Matrix models powered by the 2.4-liter engine with five-speed automatic transmission will have an estimated EPA fuel economy of 21/29 city/highway mpg.

The Matrix’s base wheel is a 16-inch steel unit with a six-spoke full wheel cover. A distinctive 17-inch five-spoke aluminum wheel will be available for the S grade, and an 18-inch aluminum alloy wheel with a twin five-spoke design will come standard on the XRS grade.

Dual-stage SRS airbags will be standard for the driver and front passenger. Front seat-mounted side airbags, two-row side curtain airbags and front active headrests are also standard.

Brake performance will be improved with standard front and rear disc brakes on all Matrix grades. Anti-lock brakes (ABS) with Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD) are also standard. Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) with TRAC and off switch will be standard on XRS and available as an option on all other models. VSC automatically adjusts engine output and the vehicle’s braking force at each wheel when the vehicle experiences a loss of traction during cornering.

Form, fun and functionality will be in abundance with an array of standard convenience features across all three grades. Base equipment on all Matrix models include power color-keyed outside rearview mirrors, power steering, tilt and telescopic steering wheel, daytime running lights, heavy duty rear window defogger, intermittent windshield wipers, 12-volt power outlet, four cupholders, auxiliary audio input jack, front center console box and an engine immobilizer.

The S grade adds standard power door locks and windows with one-touch down driver-side, 115-volt power outlet, cruise control, intermittent rear window wiper, fold-flat front passenger seat, remote keyless entry, AM/FM/CD with MP3 capability and six speakers, front and rear underbody spoilers and fog lamps.

In addition to these features, the XRS grade features standard P215/45 R18 tires on 18-inch alloy wheels, sport strut tower brace, VSC with TRAC and off switch, and a three-spoke leather-trimmed steering wheel with audio steering wheel controls.

In addition to the array of standard equipment, an impressive list of optional comfort and utility features are available to further enhance the Matrix driving experience. Available options will include an AM/FM/CD with six-speaker system with DVD navigation with XM NavTraffic® capability, alloy wheels, power heated outside rearview mirror, intermittent rear window wiper, cruise control, power door locks, power windows, and remote keyless entry.

The all-new Matrix will hit Toyota dealerships in February 2008.


2009 MATRIX PRELIMINARY SPECIFICATIONS

POWERTRAIN

1.8-liter four-cylinder engine

132 hp @6,000 rpm

128 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4,400 rpm

Five-speed manual and Four-speed automatic transmissions

2.4-liter four-cylinder engine

158 hp @ 6,000 rpm

162 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4,000 rpm

Five-speed manual and four and five-speed automatic transmissions

DIMENSIONS (inches)

Overall Length: 173.0 (S and XRS grades)

171.9 (Standard grade and S all-wheel-drive grade)

Overall Width: 69.5

Overall Height: 61.4 (XRS and S all-wheel-drive grades)

61.0 (Standard grade and S)

Wheelbase: 102.4

Ground clearance: 5.3 (S and XRS grades)

5.8 (Standard grade)

read more "2009 Toyota Matrix Revealed At SEMA Show"

2009 Toyota Corolla Sedan Unveiled At SEMA Show

Toyota took the wraps off the 10th generation Corolla that will be available in U.S. dealerships from February 2008. But wait, haven’t we seen this car before? Yes, we have as the U.S. 2009 Corolla sedan is no different from the European or Chinese Corollas that were presented in 2006. In America, the new Corolla sedan will come in five grades – Standard, LE, XLE, the sporty S, and the performance-driven XRS.

The Standard, LE and XLE models will be equipped with an all-new 1.8-liter Dual VVT-i engine producing 132 Hp and 128 lb-ft of torque. The engine can be matted either to a five-speed manual or four-speed auto gearbox. According to Toyota, the 1.8L version will achieve preliminary EPA city/highway fuel economy ratings of 27/35 mpg. As for the new Corolla XRS grade, there is a 2.4-liter VVT-i engine delivering 158 hp and 162 lb-ft of torque. Preliminary EPA city/highway fuel economy for the 2.4L engine (paired to a standard 5-speed manual and optional 5-speed auto), is 22/30 mpg. -Details & high-res image gallery after the jump





Press Release - Toyota Unveils All-New, 10th Generation Corolla At 2007 SEMA Show

October 31, 2007 – Las Vegas - Toyota Motor Sales (TMS), U.S.A., Inc., unveiled the all-new 10th generation Corolla sedan at a press conference today at the 2007 Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show.

"Nearly 40 years after the Corolla was introduced to American drivers, the 2009 Corolla will continue to offer the quality and value for which the brand has long been known," said Tim Morrison, Toyota Division corporate marketing manager. "In style and substance, the tenth-generation Corolla will have a strong, new identity, all its own. It will be far more than merely the next-generation Corolla and will position itself perfectly above our entry-level Yaris and below our sales leader, the Camry."

Originally launched in Japan in 1966, Corolla first arrived in America in 1968 to instant success. For nearly four decades, Corolla has been synonymous with Toyota quality, style and value, earning a distinction as one of the most trusted cars in America. Over that span more than 30 million Corollas have been sold worldwide, making it one of the best-selling cars of all time.

The new Corolla remains true to the brand’s role as a subcompact sedan, with dimensions similar to the model it replaces. But it offers an all-new body with a lean, stylish shape, and it delivers increased interior and luggage room, more power, more economical engines and an all-new chassis and suspension.

The all-new Corolla will come in five grades – Standard, LE, XLE, the sporty S, and the performance-driven XRS.

The Corolla’s wide, low profile was developed by Toyota Design in collaboration with styling studios in Turin, Italy. Its foundation was set by the search for a lower, sportier shape than that of the previous Corolla. That search drove the decision to move the bottom of the A-pillar forward and the bottom of the C-pillar aft to increase the angle of the window glass and to improve the Corolla’s aerodynamic performance.

The standard body kit on S and XRS models helps to modify aerodynamics and enhance the Corolla’s sporty look – these include a front underbody spoiler, fog lamps, rocker moldings, upper and lower rear spoilers, and for improved air management under the car, engine undercovers.

The 2009 Corolla’s interior is sporty and distinctive – with roomy-feeling comfort. While Corolla maintains the same headroom, legroom and shoulder room as the previous model, it feels larger, thanks to a design that enhances comfort and improves utility, usability and storage.

A variety of useable, easy-to-reach storage spaces add convenience and usability to the 2009 Corolla’s interior. These include center console side pockets, a storage box above the usual glove box, front and rear door pockets that can safely hold 20-ounce bottles, a console box with a large-capacity main tray and a smaller accessory tray, an overhead console useful for storage of sunglasses or garage-door openers, and a rear-seat center armrest with an integral drink holder.

Map lights that illuminate independently are supplied for both driver and front passenger. And to aid in ingress and egress, retractable handgrips are supplied above each door opening.

The Standard, LE and XLE models will be equipped with an all-new 1.8-liter engine. The 16-valve, DOHC four-cylinder engine with Dual VVT-i (Variable Valve Timing with intelligence), produces 132 hp at 6,000 rpm and 128 lb-ft of torque at 4,400 rpm. Corolla models equipped with the 1.8-liter engine will achieve preliminary EPA city/highway fuel economy ratings of 27/35 mpg.

A five-speed manual transmission is standard with the 1.8-liter engine, and a four-speed automatic Electronically Controlled Transmission (ECT) will also be available.

For those who crave just a bit more horsepower and torque, there is the 2.4-liter engine. This engine is completely redesigned for use in the new Corolla XRS grade. The 16-valve DOHC engine with VVT-i produces 158 hp at 6,000 rpm and 162 lb-ft of torque at 4,000 rpm. Preliminary EPA city/highway fuel economy for the 2.4-liter engine is 22/30 mpg.

The 2.4-liter engine will be paired with standard five-speed manual and optional five-speed automatic transmissions.

Safety features on the all-new Corolla include standard driver and front passenger airbags, front seat-mounted side airbags and two-row side curtain airbags.

Front seats employ active headrests as standard equipment. When the vehicle is struck from the rear, a cable-actuated mechanism in the active headrest moves the headrest upward and forward to limit the movement of the seat occupant’s head.

Toyota’s Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) is standard on all grades of the Corolla and Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) with Traction Control (TRAC) and an off switch is available.

The all-new Corolla will be loaded with a comprehensive list of standard performance and convenience features. All models will be equipped with a heavy duty rear window defogger, AM/FM/CD audio with four speakers that is also XM® satellite capable, auxiliary audio input jack, air conditioning with air filter, tilt and telescopic steering wheel, 60/40 split folding rear seats, and much more.

The sporty S grade will feature standard P205/55R16 tires with full wheel covers, color-keyed front and rear underbody spoilers, fog lamps, front sport seats, leather-wrapped steering wheel, black headlamp housing, chrome exhaust tip and AM/FM/CD XM® capable audio with six speakers.

In addition to S grade features, the XRS grade adds a rear deck spoiler, P215/45 R17 tires with alloy wheels, sport strut tower brace, VSC with TRAC and an off switch, XRS scuff plate, leather-trimmed shift lever and knob, cruise control and an interior chrome accent.

An impressive list of optional comfort and utility features will be available to further enhance the Corolla driving experience such as AM/FM/six-disc CD changer with MP3/WMA playback capability, satellite radio (subscription required) and six speakers, a power package that includes power windows and door locks. Additional options on select grades include JBL Audio system with AM/FM six-disc CD changer with eight speakers and Bluetooth®, Navigation system with AM/FM CD with MP3/WMA playback capability and XM® satellite radio with XM NavTraffic® capable with six speakers, leather-trimmed seats and shift knob, tilt and slide moonroof, VSC with TRAC and cut-off switch.

The all-new Corolla will reach Toyota dealerships in February 2008.

2009 COROLLA PRELIMINARY SPECIFICATIONS

POWERTRAINS

1.8-liter four-cylinder engine

132 hp @ 6,000 rpm

128 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4,400 rpm

Five-speed manual and four-speed automatic transmissions

2.4-liter four-cylinder engine

158 hp @ 6,000 rpm

162 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4,000 rpm

Five-speed manual and five-speed automatic transmissions

DIMENSIONS (inches)

Overall Length: 178.7

Overall Width: 69.3

Overall Height: 57.7

Wheelbase: 102.4

Ground clearance: 5.3 (XRS grade)

5.8 (Standard, S, LE, and XLE grades)

read more "2009 Toyota Corolla Sedan Unveiled At SEMA Show"

SEMA: Kia Spectra5 SX Concept

Here’s a nice example of what professional tuning can do for a vehicle that in normal form, is no more interesting than a milk carton. Designed in house by Kia USA, the Spectra5 SX concept (known as the Kia Cerato in Europe) is finished in a three-stage Amped Amber exterior color that changes shades and color depending on the vantage point. The bodykit includes a new front fascia with an expanded opening and mesh inserts and similarly-styled rear fascia and rear diffuser atop a catback exhaust with a 2.25-inch outlet. The headlamps and tail lamps are tinted while the car sits on 18-inch wheels fitted with 235/45R18 performance tires. -Continued

Additionally, Kia has fitted the concept with a performance suspension with Eibach springs (lowered 1.4 inches in front and 1.2 inches in the rear) and high-performance cross-drilled and slotted four-wheel disc brakes with front Rotora four-piston aluminum calipers.

read more "SEMA: Kia Spectra5 SX Concept"

HXC Cuda: Customized 2009 Dodge Challenger

Since we’re all about tuning today, one of our readers, “Chris P” from New York, rightfully thought that a customized version of the 2009 Dodge Challenger would sound interesting to our viewers. True, the Dodge Challenger hasn’t been officially presented in production form yet (sales start in Summer 2008), but HXC Performance wants to get a head start by opening a preliminary ordering list.

The tuning house will offer the customized Dodge Challenger which they call HXC Cuda, in four available colours (orange, green, purple and red) combined with painted billboards. The standard HXC Cuda will also feature 20-in. black alloy wheels, a shaker hood, coilover suspension, Brembo brakes, revised grill and fender inserts. According to HXC, the basic Cuda with the stock 5.7-litre Hemi V8 will cost under $50,000 (€35,000). -Continued after the jump

Additionally, HXC will offer a serious of upgrades including 20-in. alloy rims, Sparco bucket seats a high-end audio system and a supercharger kit.

Thanks for the tip Chris P!




Press Release - HXC Cuda List / Ordering Information

HXC Performance is now taking names for potential buyers of the 2009 HXC Cuda.

If you are interested in being on the preliminary list for the HXC Cuda, please email your contact information to sales@hxcperformance.com

-Name (First name, Last initial)
-City/State
-Email (contact/updates)

Because of the limited volume of 2008/9 Challengers expected to be built, HXC Performance is taking a new approach to having customers order cars. Like other specialty builders such as Saleen and Roush, the HXC Cuda will still be available for sale in select Dodge Dealerships, but to make it easier for buyers, the HXC Cuda will also be available to order through the HXC Performance Website.

How It Works;
After building and submitting your HXC Cuda online, your Name will be added to the HXC Cuda Build List and your Challenger will be ordered when one of our HXC Authorized Dodge Dealers has a Challenger Allocation available.

By taking this approach to ordering your car, we take out the hassle of dealing with local Dodge Dealers and hunting down a Challenger allocation. We want our customers to be able to order the exact car they want, and do so with the knowledge that their Challenger will be ordered as quickly as possible, and their HXC Cuda will be built to their specs.

The Process;
Once an Order has been submitted on the HXC Performance Website, our list of HXC Authorized Dodge Dealers are notified. Any one of our HXC Dodge Dealers can then "Grab" that order if they have a Challenger allocation available.

After HXC Performance has verified a Challenger is on order with that Dodge Dealership, we then notify the buyer and inform them that their vehicle is in the Dodge order system. The Challenger is then delivered to HXC Performance and your HXC Cuda gets built.

With over 1,500 potential HXC Authorized Dodge Dealers in the U.S., there is unlimited potential of Challenger Allocations to fill HXC Cuda Orders.

Link: hxcperformance

read more "HXC Cuda: Customized 2009 Dodge Challenger"