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HomeThe MarketFord’s hot hatch, GMC’s off-road special and a supercar from India

Ford’s hot hatch, GMC’s off-road special and a supercar from India

Our occasional roundup of news and notes about what could become future collector vehicles

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Remember the Ford Focus, which in ST guise was the Blue Oval’s hot hatch? Well, European buyers not only still have access to such cars, but Ford of Europe has just rolled out a special-edition, fourth-generation model it says is “the most agile Focus ST to date, with high-specification adjustable suspension and lightened alloy wheels for increased cornering precision and response.”

The car, which rides of adjustable coil-over suspension and with lightweight wheels enclosing enlarged brakes, comes with a “suspension guide” to help enthusiast owners optimize their car’s driving dynamics. Among the choices is a special Nurburgring setting.

Power comes from a 2.3-liter EcoBoost 4-cylinder engine linked to a 6-speed manual transmission with what Ford calls “flat-shift capability’ that holds the throttle open when the clutch is disengaged during upshifts.

“The new Focus ST Edition takes the hot hatchback to a new level of handling precision and control,” Stefan Muenzinger, Ford Performance manager for Europe, is quoted in the news release. “Not only does it offer increased poise and responsiveness for the enthusiast, but also gives the ability to tailor the feel and handling balance of the car to the customer.” 

The cars are available in an exclusive Azura Blue exterior with black roof, special ST badging, and part-leather Recaro sports seats.

Pricing starts at £35,785 ($47,757) in the UK.

GMC unveils OVRLANDX concept truck

Focus, Ford’s hot hatch, GMC’s off-road special and a supercar from India, ClassicCars.com Journal
Canyon AG4 OVRLANDX concept is designed for overloading | GMC photos

At the recent Overland Expo Mountain West event in Loveland, Colorado, GMC unveiled the Canyon AT4 OVRLANDX concept, a vehicle it created to show how its mid-size pickup could be customized for the overlanding enthusiast.

Features include a factory lift kit (for 10 inches of clearance) and wide off-road chassis, off-road rocker panel protection, cast-iron suspension control arms, heavy-duty front bumper with winch, integrated front recovery points, front and rear electronic locking differentials, wheel flares with integrated task lamps, Multimatic DSSV shocks, spare-tire swivel mount, guy lines to protect the windshield from low-hanging branches.

Additional features for the ultimate overlanding setup include AEV rear bumper, roof-mounted tent, 270-degree awning, jerry cans for gasoline and water, traction boards, off-road jack, cooler and kitchenette, truck-bed storage system with drawers, and a solar panel.

GV60 revealed, and explained

Genesis says the “G” stands for Genesis, the “V” for Versatility and the number “60” denotes “the most athletic vehicle yet” in its lineup. The vehicle, the Genesis GV60, is the Korean automaker’s first one on the company’s new dedicated electric platform. 

Genesis says the exterior styling was done with a theme of “athletic elegance” while the interior emphasizes “the beauty of white space.”

One feature of the exterior design is a clamshell hood, a first for Genesis, that incorporates the hood and fenders as a single panel.

Inside the car is “the Crystal Sphere,” the sphere-shaped electronic transmission control that informs the driver of oncoming driving conditions by changing its illumination.

Another supercar, but this one’s from India

Focus, Ford’s hot hatch, GMC’s off-road special and a supercar from India, ClassicCars.com Journal
Azani is a 220-mph electric super car from India | Mean Metal Motors photo

If Mean Metal Motors is successful, India will have its first home-grown electric supercar in the form of the Azani.

The company claims the car will have a range of 325 miles, will sprint to 60 mph in 2.1 seconds and will keep going up to 220 mph, thanks to its 1,000-horsepower drivetrain.

Features to be incorporated into the car include augmented reality displays, morphing seats, advanced telematics and something called M-log integration. 

Mean Metal Motors says it will build the Azani in efficient microfactories using fewer parts per vehicle.

Porsche to produce in Malaysia

Porsche has announced expansion of its engineering and manufacturing footprint with a new development facility in Shanghai, China and will launch “small-scale local assembly” in Malaysia.

Beginning in 2022, Porsche will operate “a new permanent research and development satellite in China, allowing a sustained focus on what is Porsche’s biggest single market. 

“Having a permanent home for this work in China will bring obvious benefits, particularly when it comes to reflecting and predicting our customer’s needs in China, a nation that has truly welcomed Porsche and has taken our cars to heart to the extent that it’s been our biggest sales market for six consecutive years,“ Porsche board member Oliver Blume was quoted.

It also announced the small assembly center in Malaysia to produced vehicles specifically for the 10-nation Southeast Asian automotive market. 

Meet the Megaraptor

Focus, Ford’s hot hatch, GMC’s off-road special and a supercar from India, ClassicCars.com Journal
Megaraptor is based on Ford F-250 Super Duty Platinum | MegaRexx photo

So Osprey Custom Cars of Wilmington, North Carolina, acquires MegaRexx Trucks and soon unveils the Megaraptor, a brute based on the Ford F250 Super Duty Platinum, but with fiberglass body panels, a steel halo that supports the hood and lights, links for a tilt mechanism, gas shocks and larger wheels and tires.

Empowering all of this is Ford’s 6.7-liter Power Stroke turbodiesel V8 and supporting it all are 46-inch Michelin XZL tires on “mine-resistant ambush protected” aluminum wheels, each rated at 10,000 pounds.

Trucks have a built-in air compressor, “smasher” front bumper and custom lighting.

“We did not touch the engine nor the interior on this build,” said MegaRexx’s Aaron Richardet. “But we sure made a statement on the exterior.”

The silence was stunning?

Focus, Ford’s hot hatch, GMC’s off-road special and a supercar from India, ClassicCars.com Journal
Look, mum, no tailpipes | AC Cars photo

According to AC Cars, it’s AC Cobra Series 1 electric stunned the crowds at the recent British Motor Show, where the battery-powered version of the classic AC Cobra had its public premier.

What stunned the showgoers certainly wasn’t the roar of a big American V8 engine. Instead, we’re guessing the automaker’s hyperbole traces to those who noticed that the car lacked a tail pipe.

“This was our first chance to show off the car, and the positive response was overwhelming,” AC Cars chief executive Alan Lubinsky is quoted in the company’s post-show news release. “There’s so much adoration for the AC Cobra, whether you’re six years old or over 60 – and the chance to share and enjoy people’s stories was fantastic. It shows that our best of British approach – combining an iconic car with cutting edge technology – will be a sure-fire hit.”

AC says the 2,310-pound Series 1 roadster will sprint to 62 mph in around 4 seconds and will have a range of around 150 miles. Only 58 of the vehicles will be produced, but the company already has announced that a Cobra Series 4 electric is in the pipeline.

Larry Edsall
A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.

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