Own a Bentley but are reluctant to drive it in snow and icy winter weather? Fret not. Bentley has just introduced four new 21-inch wheel-and-tire packages for the Continental GT, GT Continental Convertible and Flying Spur, as well as two for the Bentayga and one for the Continental GT Speed.
Noting that winter tires are more effective than summer tires at temperatures of less than 45 degrees, Bentley adds that its “wheel packages provide the simplest method for swapping between summer and winter tires.”
The Bentley winter wheel packages include Pirelli tires.
Integra returning to Acura lineup
Once an enthusiast favorite, the Integra is returning to Acura’s model lineup for the 2023 selling season, albeit with 4 rather than 2 doors. Honda’s premium division has unveiled the Acura Integra Prototype and says the production version will feature Acura’s first turbocharged engine, a 1.5-liter 4-cylinder, linked to a 6-speed manual transmission and limited-slip differential, and priced “around $30,000.”
The Integra (later known as the RSX) was a 2-door sports coupe produced for US sales through the 2006 model year.
In addition, for the first time, the Integra will be produced in the US, at the Marysville, Ohio, assembly plant.
Mustang gets Heritage, Coastal versions
Ford has announced that the 2022 Mustang will be available in two new versions, a Shelby GT500 Heritage Edition in Brittany Blue with either painted or vinyl Wimbledon White stripes, and the first Mustang Coastal Limited Edition, which gets stripes down the side and over the hood, a rear-fender side scoop, black grille, pedestal real spoiler, and “tarnished dark-painted” 19-inch aluminum wheels.
The Heritage Edition vinyl stripes adds $2,140 to the car’s price while the hand-painted stripes cost $12,140.
Dodge giving away 25 ‘dream cars’
As part of its new “Never Lift” program, Dodge says it will undertake an 8-week promotion to give away 25 dream cars under its Operation 25/8.
In the program, 25 “ambassadors from automotive, music, sports, fashion, media entities and companies” each will award a new Dodge Hellcat by the end of 2021.
Subaru unveils Solterra, its first EV
Subaru has unveiled Solterra, its first battery-electric vehicle. The design theme is hexagonal, and Subaru notes that the gauge cluster is mounted atop the low dashboard, with gauges visible above the steering wheel, another first for the brand.
Subaru noted that the new SUV, which has separate electric motors for its front and rear axles, is built on a platform jointly developed with Toyota.
Mazda reveals new CX-50 model
Subaru isn’t the only Japanese automaker working with Toyota on joint ventures. Mazda has unveiled its new CX-50 model, which will be built in 2022 at the new Mazda Toyota Manufacturing center in Huntsville, Alabama.
Subaru says the CX-50 blends “the brand’s striking Kodo design with an outdoor capable presence,” which leads us to wonder what it might look like were it designed to be driven indoors instead of outdoors.
Ford, Purdue speeding EV recharging
Ford and researchers at Purdue University are working to make it possible to recharge electric vehicles as quickly as you can fill your gas tank, Ford has announced. In fact, they have a patent-pending cable they say could speed recharging without the danger of overheating.
“Charging faster requires more current to travel through the charging cable,” Michael Degner, senior technical leader at Ford Research and Advanced Engineering, is quoted. “The higher the current, the greater the amount of heat that has to be removed to keep the cable operational.”
The Ford-Purdue system uses an “active cooling agent” that “could one day deliver significantly more power than today’s leading systems to re-charge electric vehicles, making the potential of faster re-charging times possible if vehicle charging and other technology enhancements are made in parallel,” Ford said.
“Ultimately, this could eventually lead to re-charging EVs as quickly as conventional gas station fill-ups.
BMW using dairy tech for EV charging
BMW of North America and California Bioenergy have a program using technology from dairy farming to provide renewable energy for powering electric vehicles. The process capturing methane gas from manure and using a biodigester to converting it through fuel-cell technology to feed electricity into the grid.
When not captured, methane gas is a major contributor to global warming.
No, it’s not a new Batmobile
At first glance, the car above may appear to be the latest Batmobile. But it’s not. It’s the Toyota GR Supra that will compete in NHRA Funny Car drag racing during the 2022 season. Previous Toyota Funny Cars have been Solaras, Celicas or Camrys, which won three championships in 20 seasons of competition.
The new car provides a better vantage and more headroom for driver J.R. Todd, who will drive the car for Kalitta Motorsports.
Suitcase-sized charging unit for apartment dwellers
An issue with electric vehicles is how people living in apartment buildings will recharge their cars and crossovers. ZipCharge, a British company, says it has a solution. The ZipCharge Go is a suitcase-sized charger that can be plugged into a household outlet and, when fully charged, can be wheeled to the car to recharge its batteries. The company says its Go provides a 20- to 40-mile charge in 30 minutes to an hour, enough for most daily commutes.
Being suitcase-sized, the Go can be carried in the car and recharged during the workday.
NHTSA awards $24 million to whistleblower
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announced its first whistleblower award, more than $24 million going to someone in connection with information regarding Hyundai Motor America and Kia Motors America and their violation of the Vehicle Safety Act. The money being paid represents the maximum allowable share of the $210 million the automakers paid to the US government.
“The whistleblower provided NHTSA with information related to Hyundai and Kia’s violations of the Vehicle Safety Act,” according to the news release. “In November 2020, NHTSA issued Consent Orders with Hyundai and Kia reflecting the agency’s assessment that both Hyundai and Kia conducted untimely recalls of over 1.6 million vehicles equipped with Theta II engines and inaccurately reported crucial information to NHTSA about the nature of serious defects in the engines.”
Brembo plants a forest
Automotive brakes producer Brembo is celebrating its 60th anniversary by planting more than 14,000 trees near Lake Victoria in Kenya.
“Among the trees being planted are fruit and non-fruit species appropriate to the local environment and the needs of its population,” Brembo said in its announcement, adding that the project involved 1,300 farmers who will care for the forest.
Brembo said the forest will capture more than 7,000 tons of carbon dioxide over a 10-year period.
London gets double-decker EV bus
The double-decker passenger bus is an icon in London, England, and its largest bus operator, Go-Ahead, is scheduled to begin trials of the Beulas Jewel E double-decker electric-powered version in the first quarter of 2022. The bus is reported to have a 300-mile range.