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Updated Toyota Yaris Sedan Gets New Name, More Safety Tech

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2019 Toyota Yaris Sedan

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Toyota has updated the Yaris four-door sub-compact for its 2019 model year, changing its name from Yaris iA to Yaris sedan, giving it more standard safety tech and introducing a new trim.

Three trims are available — L, LE, and a new premium XLE trim that makes the Yaris look and feel a bit more luxurious by adding leatherette-trimmed front seats, steering wheel, shift knob and parking brake, as well as Automatic Climate Control, automatic LED headlights, and rain-sensing wipers.

For styling, the updated Yaris’ front end gets a revised grille with a honeycomb insert design and standard fog lights on LE and XLE trim levels. Piano black accents and chrome trim also add more flavor to the exterior, while the LE and XLE trim get a sprinkling of sportiness with a new rear lip spoiler. Seven colors choices — Frost, Chromium, Graphite, Stealth, Sapphire, Pulse and the new Icicle — are available.

The 2019 Yaris sedan is powered by a 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 106 horsepower and 103 lb.-ft. of torque, mated to either a six-speed manual or automatic transmission. It delivers an EPA-estimated 32 mpg in the city and 40 mpg on the highway with the 6-speed automatic and a slightly less efficient 30 mpg in the city and 39 on the highway with the manual.

Safety has been enhanced with an Active Safety System and Low-Speed Pre-Collision System that come standard on all models.

The Toyota Yaris might received a new name and some new tech, but it’s still a Mazda2.

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Hatchbacks

Mini Cooper SE Is Mini’s First All-Electric Car

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mini cooper se electric car

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The SE provides a modest range of up to 168 miles in Europe, and generous instant torque should make it a real hoot to drive around town.

After months of teasing, MINI has finally unveiled its first-ever all-electric car, the Cooper SE.

The company’s EV is essentially a Mini Cooper S with an electric drivetrain — more specifically, the same technology used by the BMW i3 — that lets it drive 235 to 270 kilometers (146 to 168 miles) based on Europe’s WLTP and NEDC test cycles. It will reportedly have an EPA-certified driving range of 183 km (114 miles) in the U.S., a figure that will not make it a direct competitor with the Tesla Model 3 and other 200+ mile electric vehicles.

A 32.6-kWh lithium-ion battery pack energizes an electric motor that produces 181 horsepower and 199 lb-ft. of torque, allowing the Cooper Electric to zoom from 0 96 km/h (62 mph) in 7.9 seconds before hitting a top speed of 150 km/h (93 mph).

The production car seems to stay close to the concept that debuted back in 2017, featuring bright yellow accents and optional asymmetrical Corona Spoke two-tone 17-inch wheels. The interior features unique display and control elements.

According to MINI, the MINI Electric maintains the brand’s characteristic “go-kart feeling.” It weighs just 319 pounds more than the regular Cooper S two-door hardtop despite the added heft of the battery and has a 30 mm lower center of gravity thanks to the floor-mounted battery.

Are you happy with how it turned out?

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BMW

New, 2020 BMW X6 SUV Arrives With Twin-Turbo V8, Light-Up Grille

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New, 2020 BMW X6 SUV Coupe

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Its still a more stylish X5, but with a grille that lights up at night this time around.

Regardless of what you think about it’s polorizing design, the BMW X6 has been a relative success, having sold over 443,000 units since the first-gen model debuted in 2008. This success has warranted an all-new, third-generation X6.

The X6 was one of the first coupe-like crossovers — a funky-looking one at that– and the latest model sticks close to that formula. The overall proportions don’t change much — it still looks like a tall fastback on stilts — but the front and rear fascias have been upgraded with BMW’s latest design language.

Designers put more effort into differentiating the X6 from the more practical X5 than ever before, with distinct touches including a brand-first light-up grille that turns on at the same time as the daytime running lights.

The interior is mostly the same as the X5’s, including the driver-oriented center console and digital instrument cluster. A navigation system, tinted windows, a larger panoramic sunroof, ambient lighting, and Apple CarPlay all come standard, but Android Auto is still not offered.

The new X6 is a little longer and wider than the previous model, meaning more room for driver and passengers. Cargo space is still undermined by the coupe-like design, but it too is a little larger at 27.4 cubic feet with all seats up and 59.6 cubes with the rear seat folded flat. If space is your priority, go for the X5.

At launch, the X6 will be available in three versions called sDrive40i, xDrive40i and M50i. The sDrive40i and xDrive40i source their power from a 3.0-liter TwinPower Turbo inline 6-cylinder engine that produces 335 hp and 330 lb-ft of torque, while the M50i gets a 4.4-liter eight-cylinder TwinPower turbocharged engine with 523 hp and 553 lb-ft. Both engines are mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission.

The X6 sDrive40i is capable of going from 0 to 60 mph (96 km/h) in 5.2 seconds, while the all-wheel drive X6 xDrive40 reaches 60 mph in 5.3 seconds. The BMW X6 M50i is rear-wheel drive only and reaches 60 mph in only 4.1 seconds.

A proper M-tuned X6 M with over 600 horsepower will join the line-up later on, as will a plug-in hybrid model. European buyers will have access to several diesel options in addition to the aforementioned engines.

The all-new, 2020 BMW X6 is built in Spartanburg, South Carolina, and goes on sale in November 2019. Pricing starts at $64,300 for the sDrive40i model and $85,650 for the X6 M50i, both excluding a mandatory $995 destination charge.

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Audi

New, 2020 Audi S8 Brings A 563 Horsepower Biturbo V8

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2020 Audi S8 Super Sedan

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A standard active suspension and four-wheel steering are some of the major performance highlights.

There is a new Audi S8 and it packs more power, more technology and better overall performance than its predecessor.

Audi’s has a 4.0-liter biturbo V8 with cylinder deactivation and 48-volt mild hybrid technology that improves fuel efficiency for a heart, pumping out 563 horsepower (571PS) and 590 pound-feet of torque. That makes it 100 horsepower and 100 pound-feet more powerful than the A8’s twin-turbo V8.

In addition to the powerful engine, the S8 comes standard with all-wheel steering and predictive active suspension that limits body roll to just 2.5 degrees in ‘dynamic’ mode and can lift the car by up to 50 mm for easier ingress and egress.

A revised front bumper, side sills, dual twin exhaust outlets, and S badging sets the performance sedan from the lesser A8, while the interior gets a Carbon Vector upper inlay that creates a special 3D effect, Matte aluminum trim, and diamond-stitched seats with embroidered S badging.

The new and improved Audi S8 will be offered in both short-wheelbase and long-wheelbase versions, but only the long-wheelbase S8 will be sold in the United States and likely in Canada… with size-figure price tag, of course.

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