Kia has injected a dose of attitude in its Rio subcompact hatchback, giving us the Kia Rio GT-Line.
As a slightly sportier version of the Rio, the new Kia Rio GT-Line further expands Kia’s lineup of GT models in Europe, which includes the Sportage GT , Picanto GT and Sorento GT. It features a gloss-black and chrome ‘tiger-nose’ grille, standard LED daytime running lights, ‘ice-cube’ LED fog lamps, chrome window trim, unique 17-inch alloy wheels, twin exhaust tips, and a gloss black roof spoiler.
Inside, one finds a new ‘D-cut’ leather steering wheel and seats finished in a combination of black synthetic leather and cloth with contrast grey stitching, new metallic trim on the door switches and gear lever, and a new carbon fiber effect finish on the dashboard.
The Rio GT is powered by a 1.0L three-cylinder engine mated to a six-speed manual transmission, producing 118 horsepower and 126 lb-ft. of torque. That’s not quite as much as you’d find in the similarly-sized Ford Fiesta ST, VW Polo GTI and Renault Clio RS, but it is an improvement.
It is also offered with the regular Rio’s 1.25- or 1.4-liter naturally aspirated four-cylinder engines, but they pack less power — 83 and 98 hp, respectively — and are paired with a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.
The Kia Rio GT goes on sale in Europe in spring 2018. It remains to be seen whether Kia will offer a proper performance version of the little hatchback.
Bentley Bentayga Speed Nabs “World’s Fastest SUV” Title
The luxury SUV can launch to 62 mph in under 4 seconds.
Bentley proudly boasts that, with a top speed of 190 mph (306 km/h), the Bentayga Speed is the world’s fastest production SUV.
The 6.0-liter W12 engine found in the standard Bentayga has been tweaked to put out 626 horsepower and 664 pound-feet of torque, providing enough propulsion to hit 62 mph (100 km/h) from a standstill in just 3.9 seconds.
It’s worth noting that the 641 hp, V8-powered Lamborghini Urus is actually lighter and more powerful yet has the same top speed. The fact that the two SUVs are closely related makes us think there were some politics behind this head-scratching outcome.
In addition to the extra power, the Bentayga Speed provides a more dynamic driving experience than the regular Bentayga thanks to a retuned Sport mode and a stiffened suspension, while the exhaust note is throatier.
Designer gave the exterior a performance-theme characterized by dark-tint headlights, blacked-out grilles, a tailgate spoiler, and unique 22-inch wheels available in three finishes. Inside, one finds contrast stitching on the diamond-quilted upholstery and Alcantara trim, the first time the material has been used in a Bentayga.
The Bentley Bentayga Speed goes on sale in the second half of 2019 after making its world debut at the Geneva Motor Show.
BMW M2 Coupe Edition Black Shadow Celebrates Success
The BMW M2 has surpassed the M3 as the best-selling M model, and the M2-Coupe Edition Black Shadow is a celebration of that sales triumph.
Unveiled at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show, the special blacked out M2 comes exclusively in Sapphire Black metallic and rides on 19-inch, black matte forged light alloys with a Y-spoke design. It also boasts a high-gloss black grille, a carbon finish for the exterior mirrors and rear diffuser, and race-inspired accents.
All mechanical bits remain unchanged from the regular M2, so power is provided by a turbocharged, 370 horsepower 3.0-liter straight-six engine that, when equipped with the optional seven-speed dual-clutch transmission, allows the Black Shadow M2 to accelerate from 0 to 62 mph (100 km/h) in just 4.3 seconds.
Compact dimensions combined with the exceptional chassis tuning gives it the handling chops to match the impressive speed.
Considered by many enthusiasts to be the true successor to the E36 M3, the BMW M2 managed to sell more than 12,000 examples in 2017. It is one of the finest performance cars on the market right now.
New Lexus UX Unveiled, Joins Crowded Small SUV Segment
Toyota’s luxury division has bolstered its SUV-crossover lineup with a compact CUV, the new Lexus UX.
Debuting at the 2018 Geneva Motor show and billed as a ‘gateway model’ for new urban customers “in a dynamic and growing” segment, the UX is essentially a Toyota C-HR but, fortunately, looks more expensive and upscale inside and out.
It rides on Lexus’ new GA-C (Global Architecture – Compact) platform — a variation of the Toyota New Global Architecture — and measures five inches shorter than the Lexus NX crossover at 177 inches (4,495 mm) long, which should make it easier to fit into those tight city parking spaces.
The exterior adopts many of the larger sibling’s styling cues such as the polarizing spindle grille and sculpted panels, though the full-width taillights are distinct. The interior is also an upgrade over the C-HR, featuring new seats, new materials, new tech and more refinement.
The Lexus UX launches in two flavors — UX 200 and UX 250h. The UX 200 gets its power from a new 168-hp 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine that’s mated to a CVT, while the UX 250h pairs the same engine with a new fourth generation hybrid drive system that produces 176-hp. A new E-Four system grants the hybrid UX all-wheel drive capabilities by employing an additional electric motor on the rear axle.
The new Lexus UX goes on sale in December 2018.
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