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Geneva Motor Show

Lexus LC 500h Makes 354-hp, Has Four-Speed Gearbox

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Lexus LC 500h Hybrid Sports Car

When Lexus unveiled the hybrid version of the LC coupe — the LC 500h — it held onto the supercar’s performance specs for a late date. The Japanese automaker has released some of those specs and they are a bit surprising.

The LC 500h measures 87.4-inches (4760-mm) long, 75.5-inches (1920-mm) wide, 53-inches (1345-mm) tall, and has a wheelbase spanning at 113 inches (2870 mm). It is powered by a hybrid powertrain that consists of a 3.5L V6 engine, an electric motor, a lithium-ion battery pack and — get this — a 4-speed automatic gearbox mounted at the rear of the hybrid transmission.

The 3.5L V6 produces 295-hp and 257 lb-ft. of torque, while the electric motor contributes an additional 60 horsepower, bringing total output to 354 ponies. As notable as that figure is, it is well below the 470-horsepower cited in early reports.

To offset the added weight of the four-speed transmission, Lexus’ engineers chose a lightweight and compact electric motor, along with a lithium-ion battery. As a result, the system weighs just as much as Toyota’s traditional hybrid powertrains.

The Lexus LC 500h can accelerate from 0 to 62 mph less than 5 seconds. Drivers can choose between several driving setting, including ‘M’ Mode, which enables driver-initiated gear shifts and is the first of such system to be offered on a Lexus full-hybrid powertrain.

Stay tuned for even more performance details.

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Geneva Motor Show

Mercedes-AMG GT R Roadster Is One Exclusive Convertible

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Mercedes-AMG GT R Roadster

Production of this drop-top German will be limited to just 750 units.

Just four months after the four-door Mercedes-AMG GT made its debut, the Mercedes-AMG GT family has grown yet again with the addition of the GT R Roadster.

Arriving just in time for summer, the limited-edition convertible features a three-layer fabric soft top with lightweight aluminum and magnesium construction and an acoustic mat that helps absorb wind noise.

Power is provided by AMG’s 4.0-liter V8 Bitrubo engine, producing 577 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque. The sprint from 0 to 60 mph (96 km/h) is complete in 3.5 seconds and top speed is reached at 197 mph (317 km/h).

Like the GT R coupe, the GT R Roadster boasts a long list of exterior upgrades that include a wider stance, a larger rear wing, exclusive 20-inch wheels in the rear and 19-inch rims up front, and an adjustable coil-over suspension with active rear axle steering

A number of active aerodynamic components have been implemented to manage airflow around the engine and underneath the car, reducing lift and maximizing efficiency and downforce.

Notable interior touches include AMG black carbon fiber trim elements, AMG Performance seats wrapped in Nappa leather, and an AMG Performance steering wheel.

Mercedes plans to build just 750 examples of the GT R Roadster, so act fast if you want one.

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Alfa Romeo

Alfa Romeo Tonale SUV Concept Previews Alfa’s First Electrified Vehicle

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Alfa Romeo Tonale SUV Concept, live

The Italian automaker is getting ready to enter the electric vehicle segment.

Alfa Romeo used the 2019 Geneva Motor show to debut the Tonale Concept, previewing its first plug-in hybrid.

Sharing a design language with the larger Stelvio, the sleek compact crossover stands out with a large lower grille flanked by LED-array headlights that are thinner than those on the Stelvio and retro design elements like Alfa Romeo’s characteristic phone-dial wheel, which as borrowed from the 33 Stradale of the 1960s.

Highlights of the interior include a 12.3-inch full digital instrument cluster, a large 10.25-inch touchscreen for the central head unit, and premium materials ranging from aluminum to Alcantara and leather.

Technical details or a launch window for the production Tonale were not revealed, but the model was envisioned with a plug-in hybrid powertrain.

Alfa Romeo plans to launch a total of six PHEVs by the end of 2022, and the Tonale will certainly be one of them.

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Geneva Motor Show

Polestar 2 Electric Car Charges Up To Battle Tesla Model 3

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Polestar 2 EV, front quarter

Sweden delivers yet another promising electrified vehicle.

The Polestar 2 has arrived, and it’s ready to do battle with the Tesla Model 3 and other premium compact electric cars.

As Polestar’s first fully-electric vehicle, the Polestar 2 draws heavy inspiration from the Volvo 40.2 concept that debuted in 2016, featuring a relatively high ride height for a sedan and a five-door fastback design that makes it more versatile.

In fact, the Polestar 2 is based on Volvo’s Compact Modular Architecture platform and is powered by a drivetrain consisting of two electric motors and a 78 kWh battery that deliver a combined 408 horsepower and 487 lb-ft. of torque, enough power to accelerate it from 0 to 62 mph (100 km/h) in under five seconds.

The 27-module battery pack also integrated into the floor to improve the rigidity of the chassis and improve noise, vibration and harshness levels. It provides the Swedish electric car with a driving range of around 275 miles (443 km) on a single charge.

For those interested in a sportier driving experience, the Polestar 2 will be available with a Performance Pack that adds Öhlins dampers, Brembo brakes and unique 20-inch forged wheels. It also adds gold seat belts, brake calipers and valve caps.

Highlights of the interior include an 11-inch touchscreen that runs an Android-based infotainment system, granting owners access to Google Assistant, Google Maps and a number of other vehicle-based apps.

Production of the Polestar 2 kicks off in China in early 2020, with pricing starting at 39,900 Euros in Europe and at $55,000 in the United States.

Like the Polestar 1, it will be available exclusively via an online ordering system, and there will also eventually be a subscription program to broaden its reach.

Polestar will also introduce a less expensive version of the Polestar 2 down the road.

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