Citroen C- Buggy Concept Car

Unveiled in Madrid, C-Buggy is a fresh take on the leisure supermini. A small off-roader with a strong personality and original architecture, C-Buggy boasts a modern design of flowing lines. It is clearly a car in symbiosis with its environment.

C-Buggy goes on show alongside C-AirPlay, unveiled at the Bologna Motor Show last year. The resemblance is clear, although C-Buggy is more of a fun, go-anywhere type of car. Through these vehicles, Citroën is demonstrating dynamic performance and creativity, based on coherent styling and values.

It is said that the C- Buggy Concept Car front end previews that of the 2007 Citroen Picasso II and the Mitsubishi co-developed SUV, C9.

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Hyundai Getz Cross

Following the idea behind the creation of the Citroën C3 X-TR, Hyundai previewed a crossover concept version of their Getz supermini. As the X-TR, the Getz Cross, which uses a 1.5 CRDi diesel engine, has off-road appearance but no 4wd drivetrain. It remains unkown if Hyundai will ever put the Getz Cross in production.

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Citroen C4 Sedan coming to Europe in 2009

C-Triomphe is a forerunner to the car that will be launched in Europe in 2009 under the name C4 Sedan. Unveiled in China at the end of February, C-Triomphe goes on show in the Madrid Auto Salon for the first time in Europe, in a country where three-box vehicles are particularly popular.

Based on the C4 but with a longer wheelbase, this modern, original vehicle boasts all the characteristics and innovations that have made the C4 a success, while gaining an elegant notchback body style for remarkable interior space. C-Triomphe is a reference in its market in terms of rear space (leg room) and boot volume (513 litres, VDA standard).

Citroen previews two new editions of the C4 & C5 in Madrid

The C4 with a 6-speed electronic gearbox system

Premiered on the C4 and mated to the HDi 110 DPFS engine, the 6-speed electronic gearbox system is of an entirely new design.

This highly driveable engine boasts a range of advantages. Electro-hydraulic gearbox control makes for smooth, fast gear changing. At the same time, automated gear and clutch management cuts fuel consumption by between 3% and 5%, compared with a conventional manual gearbox.

This new gearbox therefore provides a real alternative to manual and automatic transmissions, not only in terms of driveability and comfort, but also in terms of fuel economy and a particularly attractive customer price. It joins the long list of innovative equipment available on the C4, for safety, convenience and on-board comfort.

A vehicle of innovative design and features that has picked up an array of prizes (including "World Car Design 2006" at the recent New York International Motor Show), the C4 is enjoying considerable market success. More than 350,000 vehicles have been sold to date.

The C4 HDi 110 DPFS equipped with the new 6-speed electronic gearbox system will be available from June 2006.

The C5 HDi 173 DPFS

The C5 range has gained a new HDi diesel engine developing 173 bhp DIN (125 kW or 170 bhp EEC), equipped with a particulate filter (DPFS) and mated to a six-speed manual gearbox.

Featuring a range of innovations (parallel sequential dual turbo and new combustion and injection systems), the new engine sets high standards in power and, above all, driveability, particularly at low engine speeds. It also stands out for its environmental performance (Euro IV + DPFS) and fuel economy.
This high-performance engine makes its market debut on the C5 from June 2006.

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Hertz Ford Mustang GT-H “Rent-a-Racer” Ad

This is Hertz’s commercial of 2006 Ford Mustang GT-H “Rent-a-Racer” that hopes to revive the cooperation between Hertz & Ford that started forty years ago. The special run of 500 performance-modified Ford Mustang GTs -- designated GT-H for "Hertz" -- will be produced by Shelby Automobiles and available at select Hertz locations to mark the 40th anniversary of the legendary program that offered car enthusiasts the unique opportunity to rent and drive a high-performance sports car.

The Ford Racing Performance Group Power Pack boosts the 4.6-liter, V-8 by 25 ponies, to 300 horsepower. The package includes Ford Racing’s 90-mm Cold Air Kit, the Muffler Kit, a new X-pipe similar to the one used on the new Ford Shelby GT500 Mustang, a performance calibration and a cat-back performance exhaust for the throaty sound that will make this car unmistakably a Shelby Mustang GT-H.

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BMW Concept Coupé Mille Miglia 2006

BMW has unveiled a brand new concept car prior to the 2006 Mille Miglia. With hints of today’s BMW Z4 Coupe and one of BMW’s most famous racing cars, the BMW 328, the BMW Concept Coupe Mille Miglia 2006 took pride of place in Brescia, Italy yesterday (May 10) as this year’s entrants were scrutineered ahead of the event.

On the surface, the BMW Concept Coupé unmistakably bears the traits of a racing sports icon. Its bodywork design is oriented on the BMW 328 Mille Miglia Touring Coupé, that legendary two-seater with which Fritz Huschke von Hanstein and Walter Bäumer drove home the victory during the Mille Miglia in 1940.

It also looks ahead to future motor sport achievements, with a modified drivetrain and suspension from the new Z4 M Coupe providing the car’s power and control. A body 23 centimetres longer, and four centimetres lower, than BMW’s latest production sports car is set off by bespoke 20-inch alloy wheels on 245/40 R 20 tyres that complement the car’s powerful presence.

PRESS RELEASE: Traditional values lead to new successes.

BMW’s historic 328 two-seater was not only the brainchild for the design of the BMW Concept Coupé; it also supplied the inspiration for the study’s inherent notion of heritage. From the long engine bonnet and the generously sweeping front wheel housings through the strongly recessed greenhouse with its divided windscreen up to the wings that arch over the rear wheels covering them completely.

Classical forms and optimised aerodynamics.

But at the same time, the characteristic basic design is being interpreted in a modern manner. The aerodynamics, already distinctive in the 1940 Mille Miglia winner was improved even further. The insights about airflow and its influence on the vehicle’s uplift pressure and downforce gained in the meantime have also opened up new opportunities.

Five each optically impressive air intakes near the A-pillars also control the flow movements in the front end. These gills are a venerable element typical for sports cars and are being fostered by BMW in current models also.

Low turbulence, clearly defined flow separation

The entire trim over the rear wheels and the extremely gently coasting tail are additional design elements based on both the traditional and the latest aerodynamic findings. A reverse V-form thus arises as the sum total, minimising undesired turbulences and concentrating the flow separation to a tightly restricted area. Trimmings placed on the underbody and diffusers made of carbon on the front and rear aprons also ensure defined air conductance in those parts of the body that are not openly seen.

Dynamic lines and asymmetrical forms.

The 20-inch alloy wheels, specifically developed for the BMW Concept Coupé, fit into the image of its powerful proportions. Tyres dimensioned 245/40 R20 are mounted on them. Instead of doors, the study bears permanently integrated sidewalls, contributing to weight reduction on the one hand and to increasing torsional stiffness on the other. To let the pilot access the interior, the entire cockpit swings up. The rear section of the concept study is also distinguished through design elements in which the aesthetics are tightly connected with their function. The headlight panel, made from LED elements is likewise conducted in a gentle Z-curve horizontally over the tail. The BMW Concept Coupé does not deny its inspirational source. Still, its body form is not dictated by nostalgia, but rather by the endeavour for forward-looking interpretations for typical BMW design themes.

Traditional artisanship for an emotional vehicle.

While developing the BMW Concept Coupé, traditional methods were applied. Whereas the nearly unlimited possibilities of high-tech designing on a computer always involve the danger of randomness, in traditional body design only consequent implementation of an idea leads to the desired goal.

During series development, this is done with clay models – a malleable Plasticine mass. For the Concept Coupé, the designers fell back on even more traditional methods: modelling with plaster.

During the material selection, the developers of the BMW Concept Coupé gave themselves the same task that inspired the creators of the BMW 328 Mille Miglia Touring Coupé to unconventional solutions. An extremely light chassis should emerge – from the available materials best suited to this purpose. At Touring in Milan, an aluminium shell was stretched over a lattice frame to accomplish that. Nowadays plastics developed especially for chassis construction set the standard for lightness, load ratings and design freedom. Accordingly, that kind of material was chosen for the Concept Coupé.

The entire body of the concept vehicle is made out of a carbon-fibre reinforced plastic (CFRP). The shell is painted fine silver, a full-gloss paint colour with extremely fine pigments.

Innovative “eyes” in a typical BMW “face”.

The BMW Concept Coupé unifies the best of two worlds – and even more. Its design provides hints of design and function opportunities, which can be made practical for series production vehicles used only in the far future.

At first glance the “face” of the study appears familiar, its “eyes” remind one of the circular headlamp used in the BMW 328. But they are not integrated into the chassis – rather they have been attached as flat elements. Modern LED technology facilitates accommodating powerful light sources in comparatively small units.

The optically dominating role on the front end is taken over by the BMW kidney. More than ever, it characterises the typical BMW “face” by letting the headlights take over the role of the “eye”, despite the innovative execution.

Timeless design, modern engineering.

Modern influences dominate the appearance of the Concept Coupé at other points also; the latest series technology is used under the timeless sheath of the study: the drive components in the BMW Z4 M Coupé, the most powerful version of the purist-sporty two-seater. The engine and suspension in the uncompromising sports car are given a totally new calling in the BMW Concept Coupé. They create the ideal basis for outstanding dynamics, for which the Concept Coupé must distinguish itself, as if it were conceived for driving on the road – or a racetrack.

The BMW Concept Coupé surmounts the BMW Z4 M Coupé by 23 centimetres length. Furthermore, it is 14 centimetres wider but 4 centimetres flatter than its counterpart approved for road traffic. The extremely short front body overhang is especially noticeable. On the other hand, the tail section is markedly gentle and stretched wide for aerodynamic reasons.

Six-cylinder in-line engine: Still the benchmark for dynamics.

On top of that, the BMW Concept Coupé provokes one to intensively delve into the history of engine construction. The study used a six-cylinder in-line powerplant as the power source. That was already the case in the BMW 328; that’s the case in the BMW Z4 M Coupé also. Six cylinders arranged in line were and are the ideal pattern for successful propulsion.

The exceptionally high performance of the six-cylinder in-line engine in the BMW Z4 M Coupé now draws its power from a displacement of 3,246 cubic centimetres; its power is rated at 252 kW/343 PS.

The modern power unit in the BMW Concept Coupé displays its advantage very impressively; also acoustically. Modifications made to the intake and exhaust system give the concept vehicle an engine sound uncompromisingly attuned to racing sports tonality.

The interior: Visions for stylish racing sports.

The driver’s and his co-pilot’s surroundings are also much different from everything that sports car enthusiasts were used to up to now. Completely free of the conventions that arise during series-ripe concept studies, the designers helped the BMW Concept Coupé to an incomparable interior.

Thus an interior was born in which the structure of the surfaces and forms achieve totally new effects. At the same time, gaps and contours have their own functionality; metal plied by hand impressively accentuates the characteristics of the material. All surfaces are brought out uninterrupted and unadorned. Neither decorating trim nor rings or frames impair their purist impression.

Even letterings, logos and symbols are not, for instance, additionally attached but are embossed into the respective metal component using laser technology.

Folding technology creates forms; gaps take on functions.

While designing the interior elements, the designers combined the use of traditional materials and the application of innovative processing methods with each other. While doing so, they achieved a result that is unique in automobile construction and loaded with incredible effects. Especially conspicuous: the implementation of V2a stainless-steel processing in the cockpit and the centre console area.

More than just the purist unpretentious material itself, that kind of shaping sets a fascinating accent. The metal sheets, rolled to a thickness of only one millimetre, are multi-folded to take up the final surface structure of the respective component.

Everywhere where two metal components meet, they are clamped together absolutely flush using laser cut castellations. Gaps are only present where they could and above all should take on a function at the same time; for instance, the transition between the dashboard support and the centre console is used as additional storage space.

New aesthetics from tradition and innovation.

Connecting tradition with innovation also led to a new aesthetic when processing the leather in the BMW Concept Coupé interior. Several layers of the merely tanned, but other than that natural cowhides are pressed into each other. Thus a three dimensional leather-mould part emerges that, among other things, imparts a new haptic feeling in the seating and middle console sections. Furthermore, the undyed leather underlies a natural maturing process, leading to attractive patina effects over the years.

The leather and Lycra elements are connected among and with one another using especially subdued stitches. Even metal and leather is stitched together wherever they meet. The three materials dominating the interior of the concept vehicle consist of highly varying characters: one is a metal created for infinite solidity, one an untreated and therewith living natural material and one made of modern, hardwearing plastic fibres.

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Knight Rider planning his return to the Big Screen

According to a report made by Reuters, Knight Rider and his talking car K.I.T.T. are heading to the big screen. The article says that the successful 80’s series creator, Glen A. Larson will write and executive produce the Weinstein Co. project, which he anticipates will begin production in 2007. The “Knight Rider” project had previously been in development at Sony-based Revolution Studios.

Larson had the idea for a movie version of K.I.T.T rolling in his mind for a lot of years. "A number of people wanted to do a pure comedic send-up of it, but I always felt that would throw away the franchise”, he says. "There was always some humor on the show, but this film will probably have more gallows, foxhole humor

The report doesn’t say whether David Hasselhoff, who was the star in the series, would appear in the movie. Wonder which car should replace the original Pontiac in the movie. Any ideas?

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Fiat presents a new line of custom made mobile phones

Fiat are set to become a manufacturer of 'high-technology' goods as they begin rolling out a range of Fiat-branded mobiles phones this month. These exclusive phones include all the technology that mobile phone consumers demand such as an MP3 reader, digital photo and video camera and cinema facility.

The new Fiat-branded range of mobile phones are proudly emblazoned with the Fiat logo in finished in the traditional dark blue colours of the historic brand and bodied in a simple 'cold' aluminium. They are embedded with the latest technology including internet browsing, music (MP3) playback, email, digital camera and video, photo albums and Bluetooth. Fiat have already invested in rolling Bluetooth capability across their auto range and a new integrated service, Blue&Me, developed in partnership with Microsoft was revealed at the Geneva Motor Show in March.

The evolution from cars to mobile phones is clearly demonstrated in the thinking that has led to the presentation of the new range of phones. While the aluminium finish of the actual phones themselves emphasise an association with the traditional aluminium of a car engine, the phones will be displayed in the retail outlets in distinctive display cases that enclose them in four clear cylindrical tubes that are also reminiscent of the pistons of a 4-cylinder internal combustion engine. The phones are mounted on top of a set of polished aluminium pistons that sit at different in positions in the tubes which correspond in pairs, just as they would in an engine application.

Emphasising the leisure but also useful and robust nature of their new mobiles phones, certain models will be waterproofed models making them ideal for the casual surfer or full water-sports enthusiast. The full range of new phones will be available in selected designer 'concept' stores and boutiques across Italy this month, and then around Europe during the summer period.

Read more here: Fiat "T-Logic"

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International Engine Of The Year Awards 2006

- BMW M5 engine takes International Engine of the Year title for a standard-setting second consecutive year

- Double-blown Volkswagen 1.4 TSI “miniature” tops its class

- Subaru picks up its first ever ‘Engine Oscar’

BMW’s 5-litre V10 has today been crowned the best engine in the world for the second year in a row at the International Engine of the Year Awards 2006 held at Engine Expo in Stuttgart, Germany.

The Bavarian car maker, which also won Awards for its Z4 M 3.2-litre and twin-turbodiesel 3-litre in this year’s competition, walked away from the eighth annual International Engine of the Year Awards Presentation with a total of five trophies, its re-crowned V10 having also dominated the Best Performance Engine and Best Above 4-litre categories. The unit saw tough competition from the likes of Volkswagen’s new 1.4-litre TSI and the previous International Engine of the Year title holder, Toyota’s 1.5-litre Hybrid Synergy Drive Prius, which in 2006 also won the Best 1.4-litre to 1.8-litre and the Best Fuel Economy categories.

Juror Frank Markus from America’s Motor Trend magazine said of the BMW V10: “A technological tour de force, and about the closest one can come to buying a Formula One engine for the road”, while Japan-based automotive freelancer Peter Nunn commented, “The BMW V10 is a masterclass in exhilarating power, sound, response and brilliant packaging that comes as standard.” Markus and Nunn wer

e two of the 61 motoring journalists from 29 countries that voluntarily give their time to choose the greatest powerplants in the world.

Elsewhere in this prestigious contest, Subaru won its first ever International Engine of the Year Awards trophy with its new 2.5-litre turbo that powers the Impreza, topping the 2-litre to 2.5-litre category. VW picked up Awards for its

2-litre FSI Turbo (170-220 hp), found in the Golf GTi, and for the 1.4-litre TSI (170hp), which won both the 1-litre to 1.4-litre class and the Best New Engine 2006.


International Engine Of The Year Awards Rules

Capacity Classes: Eight in total: Above 4-liter; 3-liter to 4-liter; 2.5-liter to 3-liter; 2-liter to 2.5-liter; 1.8-liter to 2-liter; 1.4-liter to 1.8-liter; 1-liter to 1.4-liter; and Sub 1-liter. To qualify for inclusion in these Awards' Classes, an engine must be housed in a passenger car that is on sale in more than one country as at 10 May 2006.

Best Fuel Economy: To qualify for inclusion in this Award Category, an engine must be housed in a passenger car that is on sale in more than one country as at 10 May 2006, and have been designed with fuel economy as a priority (i.e. diesels, hybrids, etc)

Best Performance Engine: To qualify for inclusion in this Award Category, an engine must be housed in a passenger car that is on sale in more than one country as at 10 May 2006, and either have been designed specifically for a performance-orientated car or be installed in a vehicle, the aim of which is sporting fun.

Best New Engine 2006: To qualify for inclusion in this Awards category, an engine must have been launched after 1 June 2005 and be housed in a passenger car that is on sale in more than one country as at 10 May 2006.

International Engine of the Year 2006: The winners of the eight engine capacity classes are shortlisted for the International Engine of the Year 2006 crown. The winners of the Best Fuel Economy, Best Performance Engine, and Best New Engine 2006 categories are omitted from the final shortlist to avoid duplication.

SCORING: In every category, the panelists judged each shortlisted engine using their subjective driving impressions and technical knowledge, and took into account characteristics such as fuel economy, noise, smoothness, performance and driveability. The jurors each had 25 points to spend on their five favourite engines in each class. The maximum points that could be allocated to one engine was restricted to 15, while the minimum reward was one mark. An engine could not be tied for the top slot.

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2007 Opel Antara -Vauxhall Antara Official Press Release

· Elegant, dynamic crossover will be launched by end of 2006

·Powerful diesel and gasoline variants; top-of-the-line 3.2 V6 with 224hp

·Intelligent four-wheel drive with electro-hydraulic differential

·Prices start at 26,850 euro

Following the enthusiastic reaction to the Antara GTC crossover concept car at the IAA 2005, Opel launches this year the five-door production version of the new Antara. “With the new Antara, we are entering one of the fastest-growing segments in Europe. It is a technically sophisticated vehicle with a unibody construction which combines dynamic design with intelligent four-wheel drive, high levels of functionality and a higher seat position – tailor-made for a growing customer base,” says Opel Managing Director, Hans Demant. The total share of the combined SUV and crossover market in Europe has doubled since 1998, from three to six percent, with continued growth expected.


“When we presented the Antara GTC concept car last September at the IAA in Frankfurt, it immediately became the star of the show,” says Alain Visser, Executive Director, European Marketing, Adam Opel GmbH. “Now the production version is ready. It realizes our high ambitions in the growing crossover market, as it takes the coupé-like sporty character of the three-door Antara GTC concept, and transforms it into a dynamic, elegantly designed five-door series-production model, with five seats and remarkable interior versatility.” Prices for the new Antara - with 2.4-liter-gasoline engine - will start at 26,850 euro. “That is a very modest price for such a high-value crossover,” adds Visser. While the opening of the GM Europe Design Center in Rüsselsheim today provides the first opportunity to see the new

model, the Antara will make its public world premiere at the Mondial de l´ Automobile in Paris (September 30 – October 15, 2006).


The special character of the Antara design is spotlighted by bold contrasts. The lower section looks very robust, and the body features bold lines and taut surfaces that combine to give a sporty muscular appearance with stylish elegance. The designers visualized a versatile car, that is both dynamic and comfortable for long journeys. Carefully crafted details such as the crease on the hood and the grille accented by the wide chrome bar with large Opel logo confidently emphasize the car’s high quality and brand identity.

High ground clearance, large wheels and robust protective elements all round are defining characteristics of the new Antara, as are its compact dimensions
(length x width x height: 4.57 x 1.85 x 1.
70 meters). It takes up no more space than a mid-size passenger car, while at the same time offering ample interior room. The interior echoes the style and elegance of a top-of-the-line sedan, with sporty contoured seats that highlight its dynamic SUV character. In characteristic Opel style, all instruments and operating controls are ergonomically placed and arranged. The large, well-designed instruments and center console with central info display give the cockpit a driver-oriented layout. On board are innovative infotainment systems familiar from other Opel models, including DVD navigation and Bluetooth functionality.


Initially, three transversally-mounted engines are available for the Antara, all of which have four valves per cylinder. The top-of-the-line unit is closely related to the six-cylinder engines of the Vectra and Signum models. The Antara’s V6 gasoline engine has 3.2-liter displacement, output of 165 kW/224 hp, and comes with an automatic transmission with ActiveSelect function. Opel expects the 110 kW/150 hp, 2.0-liter common-rail turbo-diesel to be the top seller. It is available with a five-speed manual gearbox, or with the same automatic transmission as the V6 engine. The entry-level engine is a 2.4-liter, 104 kW / 141 hp, four-cylinder gasoline unit with two overhead camshafts and one balance shaft.

4WD System

The Antara’s intelligent active four-wheel drive system combines the benefits of front-wheel drive - such as tractional stability when accelerating and increased driving dynamics - with those of permanent four-wheel drive. It features an electronically controlled electro-hydraulic differential which ensures optimal torque distribution between the front and rear axles in all situations. The drivetrain is fully integrated in the ABS and ESP systems, enhancing vehicle control and active safety.

Other standard functions include Hydraulic Brake Assist (HBA), Active Rollover Protection (ARP), and (unusually for the Antara´s segment) Descent Control System (DCS). DCS enables the Antara to be driven safely on steep slopes at a constant speed, which is pre-selected by the position of the gas pedal. Trailer Stabilization Assist (TSA) is available as an option. The McPherson suspension in front and a four-link suspension in the rear provide a high-quality chassis concept similar to that in the Opel Vectra and Signum models. The braking system comprises large-sized ventilated disc brakes on all wheels.

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Mercury debuts the Hispanic-themed, Milan Voga at the Miami Fashion Week Show

Mercury debuted a customized 2006 Milan Voga during the “Miami Fashion Week”, the largest Latin American fashion event in the U.S., which is being held May 6–10 in Miami Beach. The event brings top designers from Latin America and Florida to preview their spring 2007 collections.

With $736 billion of the nation's buying power, Hispanics are among the most influential consumers in the marketplace. And with arms wide open, Ford Motor Company is making every effort to welcome these influential customers to its family of vehicles.

The car was designed with the Nuevo Latino in mind by Ford GT car designer Camilo Pardo. Actress Roselyn Sanchez will unveil the car, which will be auctioned online in June at All the proceeds will benefit MANA, A National Latina Organization, which is committed to empowering Hispanic women.

"It's going to be really cool because I've never had the opportunity to get involved with the design of a car and then deliver it to the Hispanic community," said Pardo, who is a descendant of Columbia. "We've used the Ford GT as a centerpiece before, but this is a car designed specifically for this purpose, and it is going to be auctioned off for a very worthy cause."

The Milan Voga boasts a stainless blue metallic paint job, luxury black/vanilla bean custom leather trimmed seating and door inserts, 3D Carbon exterior ground effects, H.R.E. competition 943 forged 20-inch wheels outfitted with Pirelli tires, and stainless steel roof appearance cap. All of this is complemented by the Milan Premier interior package that includes a power moonroof and a Premium in-dash 6-CD sound system with MP3 capability. Under the hood, there’s a 3.0L Duratec V-6 engine that generates 221 horsepower and 205 pounds of torque.

The car will be auctioned online at E-bay. Consumers can pre-qualify for the online auction of Milan Voga by visiting The auction will officially commence on June 13 and will run for 10 days.

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Dodge to support FIA GT and FIA GT3 European Race Series

Coinciding with the introduction of its vehicles in Europe, the Dodge brand has been appointed ‘Official Cars Supplier’ to the FIA GT and FIA GT3 European Championships for 2006. These international Championships showcase race-prepared versions of the world’s most powerful and desirable supercars, providing spectacular racing and entertainment.

Dodge will provide a fleet of six vehicles for use on and off the race circuit at each round of the FIA GT and FIA GT3 Championships during the coming season, which starts on May 6 and 7 with the ‘Silverstone Supercar Showdown’ in England.

The Dodge fleet will consist of an ‘Official Safety Car,’ an ‘Official Pace Car,’ one ‘Official Medical Car’ and three additional Dodge vehicles that will serve as VIP and media shuttles during the series.

Track Action

As well as providing this fleet of ‘official vehicles,’ Dodge cars will also feature prominently in the track action, as nine of the 78 entries contesting the new-for-2006 FIA GT3 European Championship are Dodge Viper Competition Coupes run by French and Italian race teams

“The Dodge brand has an historic affinity with motorsports and a series like this complements many of the attributes of the brand, such as bold design, capability and affordable power,” said Stéphane Labous, Director–International Marketing and Communications, Chrysler Group. “So, this is a natural tie-in for the Dodge brand and we are delighted to be appointed as official cars supplier to this exciting racing series.”

Commenting on the agreement, Stephane Ratel, Chairman of SRO, the race series promoter, said: “I’m thrilled that SRO and Dodge have entered into this agreement to supply the official cars for the 2006 season of the FIA GT and FIA GT3 European Championships.”

Following the opening race weekend at Silverstone on May 6 and 7, the FIA GT 10-race series will visit seven countries during the season, including: Czech Republic, Germany, Belgium, France, Italy, Romania and the United Arab Emirates. The FIA GT3 European Championship will support FIA GT in the following four countries: Germany, Belgium, France (Dijon) and Italy (Mugello).

Visit the official FIA GT and FIA GT3 European Championship Web sites at or for the latest news and information.

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2007 Toyota Avensis to be revealed at Madrid Motor Show

• New Clean Power D-4D diesel engine joins line-up

• Fresh exterior and interior styling for more sporty look

• Further enhancements to ride and driving pleasure

Press Release: The 2007 Avensis, the flagship for Toyota in Europe, will set higher standards in the upper-medium car segment thanks to its refined driving pleasure and premium build quality.

The 2007 Avensis will feature a fully competitive diesel engine line up, including the new, high tech 2.0-litre D-4D 125. The new engine will offer an excellent combination of fuel economy and lively performance. The D-4D 125 is also a further development in the Toyota Clean Power strategy to reduce harmful emissions thanks to the availability of a diesel particulate filter.

Exterior and interior design changes to the 2007 Avensis will bring out a more sporty character. At the same time, a number of detail changes to the interior will enhance quality standards and driving pleasure.

The Toyota press conference will take place on the 25th of May at the Madrid Motor Show

Auto Cars 2011 Link:

Toyota Europe:

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Toyota Human Touch Commercial

Hakuhodo Agency made this funny Toyota commercial aimed at the Japanese market. The very entertaining ad demonstrates a Toyota Yaris sedan filled with a bunch of people acting as seatbelts, airbags etc.

In one scene, the car owner sits on a mans knee and reaches round for his “seatbelt”, which is simply a man's arms locked together at the front by his fingers while in another scene, when it begins to rain, a man in goggles materialises on the bonnet and his hand operates the windscreen wipers…(!)

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Rebadged Opel Astra coming to the USA in 2007 as a Saturn Ion

According to Automotive news, sources within GM and its Opel subsidiary confirmed plans of importing rebadged Opel Astra compacts to replace the Ion at the bottom of Saturn's lineup.

Saturn's version of the Astra will probably be assembled in GM’s factory in Antwerp, Belgium. It is still unclear If GM will import only the 5door hatchback and the 3door sporty GTC models, or the whole range which consist of a station wagon and an all new coupe-cabrio model. Sales are expected to start in the US late 2007.

The Opel Astra which went on sale in Europe in 2004 is also sold in Australia from Holden. The models strong points are its design and quality interior while driving dynamics -although much better than its Japanese rivals, it lacks the interactiveness of the Ford Focus. The Astra GTC OPC (blue car in pictures) is the top of the range model, fitted with a very powerful 2.0 Turbo engine that produces 240 hp.

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