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    Mini Lineup To Grow To Ten, No New Body Styles Though


    By William Maley

    Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com

    February 16, 2013

    We known for a time that the Mini lineup would be growing to ten models, but we weren't quite sure how that would happen. Well Car and Driver had the chance to talk with Mini U.S. product planning manager Patrick McKenna about the possibilities.

    Model eight is the new Mini Clubvan, while nine and ten will not be a new body style. Instead, nine and ten will be a front-wheel-drive hybrid and a second-generation electric Mini, both based on the three-door Cooper.

    Also in the pipeline is the new Cooper which will debut in November and come with a turbocharged three-cylinder engine and a next-generation Clubman.

    One model that will not be coming is the Rocketman, that has been canned.

    Source: Car and Driver

    William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.

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    Blah, the bulk of the Mini Lovers have their cars and now they are just putting frosting on the same old tired Mule and it will cost them. I do not see them increasing sales but canibalizing existing sales with no gain.

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    ^ Agreed; the 'trip down memory lane' has played it's hand, and Mini is locked into the look so rigidly they are unable to deviate from it. That said, the design is now coming up on TWENTY YEARS OLD, with the sole MCE being an incredible mirror image. Development is dead on the vine.

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    ^ Agreed; the 'trip down memory lane' has played it's hand, and Mini is locked into the look so rigidly they are unable to deviate from it. That said, the design is now coming up on TWENTY YEARS OLD, with the sole MCE being an incredible mirror image. Development is dead on the vine.

    Twenty? Exaggerate much? The New Mini has only been out for little over a decade... besides, the original design lasted for around 40 years, so I wouldn't expect revolutionary change..

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    Feels like almost 20. "Went on sale July 2001" - so coming up on 12 years old. An "eternity" in the opinion of most armchair auto industry critics, who begin to sweat when a car goes without changes after 2 years.

    Edited by balthazar
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    Mini is FWD, but no appliance. Didn't the original pioneer the idea of FWD/transverse engine for max passenger room formula back in the 50s? So it is absolutely appropriate it has FWD... essential to concept.

    That may not have been your point, Balthy, but you know wut I mean.

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    Mini is FWD, but no appliance. Didn't the original pioneer the idea of FWD/transverse engine for max passenger room formula back in the 50s? So it is absolutely appropriate it has FWD... essential to concept.

    That may not have been your point, Balthy, but you know wut I mean.

    Yes...the Mini is pretty much the original FWD subcompact...the original set the template for all that was to come. By appliances I mean bland commodity cars that the mainstream buys in volume---Camry, Malibu, Corolla, Cruze, Altima, etc...functional product that get people you point A to point B but offer nothing interesting or distinctive. The Mini is stylish and distinctive, more than a mere appliance.

    Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar
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    • By William Maley
      Previous Page Next Page Auto show season is upon us and automakers are beginning to reveal their various debuts. For example, Mercedes-AMG has pulled the curtain back on the AMG GT and GT-C Roadsters that will officially debut at the Paris Motor Show later this month.
      Like the GT coupe, the GT Roadster feature the same 4.0L biturbo V8 with different states of tune. The GT Roadster punches out 469 horsepower and 465 pound-feet of torque, and the GT-C features 550 horsepower and 502 pound-feet. Those with keen eyes will note the two roadsters produce more power than their coupe counterparts (GT: 456 horsepower and 443 pound-feet; GT-S: 503 horsepower and 479 pound-feet). Why? Our hunch is due to the added weight. Mercedes isn't disclosing that information at the moment. Both come paired with a seven-speed dual-clutch Speedshift transmission. 0-60 mph times are 3.9 seconds for the GT and 3.7 for the GT-C. 
      The GT-C is an interesting beast. It features remapped programming, a performance exhaust system, a wider rear track, electronic limited-slip differential, and rear-wheel steering. With all of the parts, the GT-C roadster appears to appeal to those hardcore folks who want to put the top down.
      The GT Roadster uses a soft-top that is available in three colors. The top can be put down or up in 11 seconds and at speed up to 31 mph. There is also the active air management system that uses vertical louvers behind the front grille. At low speeds, the louvers close to reduce drag. At higher speeds, the louvers open to provide additional cooling.
      “With our two Roadster models, we are strategically expanding the AMG GT family by two exciting variants. With the AMG GT C Roadster, we are also introducing a new model variant to which we have transferred main performance-related components from our top sports car, the AMG GT R. The result: a highly dynamic driving experience in a very exclusive ambience, coupled with that pure roadster feeling,” said Tobias Moers, chairman of Mercedes-AMG in a statement.
      Mercedes says the AMG GT Roadster will arrive in the U.S. next fall.
      Source: Mercedes-AMG 
      Press Release is on Page 2
      The new Mercedes-AMG GT Roadster and Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster
      Open-top driving performance September 14, 2016 - Affalterbach.
      Mercedes-AMG is blowing even more fresh air into the AMG GT family. Shortly after the world premiere of the AMG GT R, AMG is presenting two exciting roadster variants of the two-seater sports car. Alongside the AMG GT Roadster, the AMG GT C Roadster enhances the portfolio with a completely new model variant. With an output of 550 hp and peak torque of 502 lb-ft, the AMG GT C is the most powerful new Roadster variant and uses some of the technical refinements of the AMG GT R. These include active rear axle steering and the electronically controlled rear axle locking differential. In combination with AMG RIDE CONTROL sport suspension, the AMG GT C Roadster guarantees dynamic performance at the very highest level. The AMG GT C Roadster also takes its lead from the top AMG GT R sports car where muscular proportions are concerned: the wider rear fenders create space for a wider track and wider wheels at the rear axle, allowing for excellent traction and even higher cornering speeds. The variable performance exhaust system also ensures an authentic V8 sound from the AMG Roadster.
      The new Roadsters make hallmark AMG driving performance an even more intensive experience. "With our two Roadster models, we are strategically expanding the AMG GT family by two exciting variants. With the AMG GT C Roadster, we are also introducing a new model variant to which we have transferred main performance-related components from our top sports car, the AMG GT R. The result: a highly dynamic driving experience in a very exclusive ambience, coupled with that pure roadster feeling," says Tobias Moers, Chairman of Mercedes-AMG GmbH.
      With the two Roadster variants the Mercedes-AMG GT family has now increased to five members. The two new sports cars with fabric soft tops likewise have the technical genes for which AMG is famous. These include a lightweight and torsionally rigid aluminum bodyshell plus powerful and efficient V8 biturbo engines. The entry level into the Roadster world is the AMG GT with an output of 469 hp.
      The AMG GT C Roadster adds a completely new output level. With 550 hp it is the more powerful of the two new open-top sports cars.
      Technical data at a glance:
        Mercedes-AMG GT Roadster Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster Engine 4.0-liter V-8 with twin turbochargers and direct injection 4.0-liter V-8 with twin turbochargers and direct injection Displacement 3,982 cc 3,982 cc Output 469 hp at 6,000 rpm 550 hp at 5,750-6,750 rpm Peak torque 465 lb-ft at 1,700-5,000 rpm 502 lb-ft at 1,900-5,750 rpm Drive system Rear-wheel drive Rear-wheel drive Transmission AMG SPEEDSHIFT® DCT 7-speed dual-clutch transmission AMG SPEEDSHIFT® DCT 7-speed dual-clutch transmission Acceleration 0-60 mph 3.9 s 3.7 s Top speed 188 mph 196 mph Rear-axle limited-slip differential mechanical electronically controlled Suspension AMG Sport Suspension AMG RIDE CONTROL Sport Suspension with adaptive, adjustable damping Wheels front / rear 9.0" x 19" / 11" x 19" 9.0" x 19" / 12.0" x 20" Tires front / rear 255/35 R 19 / 
      295/35 R 19 265/35 R19 / 
      305/30 R 20 Brake discs front/rear 14.2" / 14.2" 15.4" / 14.2" Transmission modes four: C, S, S+, I five: C, S, S+, I, RACE The AMG GT C Roadster not only delivers more output and torque, it also impresses with numerous technical highlights from the Mercedes-AMG GT R for even more dynamic performance. Like the AMG GT R, the AMG GT C Roadster is recognizable by its wide, muscular rear end and large wheels. Other technical measures include the wider rear track and active rear axle steering.
      The AMG GT C Roadster is also equipped with a lithium-ion battery and has more exclusive appointments. Standard features include a Nappa leather interior, AMG Performance steering wheel in Nappa leather/DINAMICA microfiber and the additional transmission mode "RACE."
      Fully automatic: the weight-optimized fabric soft top
      Both Roadsters are quickly transformed from coupes to open-top sports cars. The fabric roof opens and closes in around eleven seconds, and can do this at speeds of up to 31 mph. The three soft top colors (black, red and beige) can be chosen to suit the eleven exterior and ten interior colors. The three-layered fabric soft top is supported by a lightweight magnesium/steel/aluminum structure which helps to keep the center of gravity low. Additional rollover protection is provided by an integrated aluminum cross-member with rollover bars.
      New output level: the handcrafted AMG 4.0L V8 biturbo engine
      With the AMG GT C Roadster, Mercedes-AMG is introducing a further output level of the handcrafted 4.0L V8 biturbo engine, thereby underlining the exclusive character of the new model. At 550 hp, the peak output is 47 hp above that of the AMG GT S and 27 hp below the Mercedes-AMG GT R. The maximum torque of 502 lb-ft is available from 1,900 to 5,750 rpm. A sprint from zero to 60 mph is achieved in 3.7 seconds, accelerating on to a top speed of 196 mph.
      The AMG GT Roadster has an output of 469 hp and 465 lb-ft of torque. This variant accelerates to 60 mph in 3.9 seconds and to a top speed of 188 mph.
      The eight-cylinder engine thrills with its immediate response, a linear, finely controllable power delivery and powerful acceleration in all rpm ranges. The handcrafted AMG 4.0L V8 biturbo engine comes with well-proven twin turbocharging, with the two turbochargers not located outside on the cylinder banks, but rather between them in the V of the cylinders. The advantages of the "hot inner V" configuration include a compact engine design, spontaneous response from the turbochargers and low exhaust emissions thanks to optimum air flow for the close-coupled catalytic converters.
      Also adapted: the dual-clutch transmission
      The developers have also adapted the seven-speed dual clutch transmission in a transaxle arrangement at the rear axle to the new power level of the Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster by modifying the hardware and software. The first gear of the AMG SPEEDSHIFT® DCT 7-speed sport transmission has a higher ratio, while seventh gear and the final drive have a lower ratio. This makes for even more agile acceleration and very fast responses to sudden accelerator movements.
      The driver is able to set the AMG GT Roadster to his/her individual requirements using the AMG DYNAMIC SELECT controller. The three transmission modes "C" (Comfort), "S" (Sport), "S+" (Sport Plus) and the individually programmable setup "I" (Individual) allow a broad range of driving experiences from comfortable to very sporty.
      The transmission mode "RACE" is additionally available for the Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster. This mode optimally adjusts the shift strategy of the dual clutch transmission to the needs of the racetrack – very fast shift speeds and highly emotional engine sound are included. By pressing the separate "M" button in the center console, the driver can activate the manual transmission mode.
      Pure sound: the AMG Performance Exhaust System
      The AMG GT C Roadster is equipped with the AMG Performance Exhaust System as standard to obtain an even more emotional sound experience. Two variably adjustable flaps modulate the exhaust note of the Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster authentically and directly. The flaps open and close depending on the selected AMG DRIVE SELECT mode, although they can also be controlled individually using a separate button in the AMG DRIVE UNIT. In the "Comfort" and "Sport" settings, the low-frequency sound typical of a V8 is designed for comfort. In "Sport+" and "RACE" modes the sound composition is far more emotional. The variable AMG Performance Exhaust System is also available as an option for the Mercedes-AMG GT Roadster.
      Also for the Roadster models: active air management system from the AMG GT R
      The two AMG Roadster variants have adopted a special technical highlight from the AMG GT R: the active air management system. Vertical louvers located in the lower area directly behind the front fascia can be opened and closed by an electric motor in around one second. This ensures that the cooling performance is according to need. Always achieving the optimum position requires highly intelligent and fast control.
      During normal driving with no increased cooling requirement, the louvers are closed to reduce aerodynamic drag and specifically conduct the air to the underbody. Only when certain components reach predefined temperatures and the air requirement is particularly high do the louvers open to allow the maximum cooling airflow to the heat exchangers.
      Highly expressive: athletic exterior design
      From the expressive AMG Panamericana grille to the long, muscular hood and the wide rear end, the two-seater guarantees a pure sports car experience even when stationary. The striking AMG Panamericana grille underlines the motor racing heritage: 15 chrome-plated, vertical bars echo the look of the current Mercedes-AMG GT3 customer sports racing car. The new front bumper emphasizes the car's width and gives it an athletic appearance on the road. Large outer air inlets ensure the supply of cooling air to the engine and the pronounced shoulder line is suggestive of a tensed muscle, enhancing the impression of sheer power and athleticism in combination with the new 19-inch and 20-inch AMG light-alloy wheels in a 5-twin-spoke design.
      Muscular with an emphasis on width: the rear end
      The rear end also features numerous, conspicuous innovations. The new aluminum fenders of the AMG GT C Roadster widen the open-top two-seater by 2.25-inches compared to the AMG GT Roadster, making it the same width as the AMG GT R. Compared to the AMG GT Roadster the muscular form also creates space for larger wheels and a wider track. Both measures make for traction while allowing higher cornering speeds. The likewise wider contours at the AMG GT C Roadster's rear bumper improve airflow at the rear with large outer air vents. Both Roadster variants feature a rear spoiler integrated into the trunk lid which can be electrically extended and retracted at defined speeds, depending on the selected transmission mode.
      Greater rigidity and low weight: Intelligent material mix
      Mercedes-AMG also uses an intelligent material mix for the body structure of the AMG GT and GT C Roadster. Various aluminum alloys are used for the chassis and body and magnesium is used for the front deck. This extremely light element at the front reduces the inertia ahead of the front axle, thus improving agility.
      The already rigid bodyshell structure has been specifically reinforced further to take account of the car's design as a roadster: side skirts with greater wall thicknesses and more chambers make the structure more rigid. The dashboard support is braced against the windscreen surround by additional struts and a strut tower brace between the soft top and the tank reinforces the rear axle. A cross-member behind the seats supports the fixed roll-over protection system.
      The trunk lid is particularly light, thanks to an innovative composite material. The load-bearing structure is of SMC (Sheet Molding Compound) with carbon fiber. These high-tech plastics excel with their light weight, great strength and first-class surface condition. These innovative materials were developed by the Mercedes-Benz TEC factory in Sindelfingen and brought to production maturity together with the AMG specialists in Affalterbach. This material combination is used for the first time in the new AMG Roadsters.
      The AMG lightweight construction experts have also used a composite material for the wheel-catching struts. 50 percent lighter than the equivalent in steel, these composite components help to guide the front wheels onto the side members as part of the intended crash kinematics in an accident, and to hold them there.
      Derived from motorsport: the AMG Sport Suspension
      The AMG Sport Suspension likewise confirms the motor racing heritage of the new AMG Roadsters. Wishbones, steering knuckles and hub carriers on the front and rear axle are manufactured entirely out of forged aluminum to reduce the unsprung mass. The wheels are also guided by double wishbones. The resulting precision in camber and track allows high cornering speeds and gives the driver optimum, highly precise road feedback right up to the very high cornering limits.
      In the Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster, the sport suspension is combined with AMG RIDE CONTROL continuously variable, adaptive damping system. The system is electronically controlled and automatically adapts the damping on each wheel to the current handling situation, speed and road conditions.
      Even more agility: active rear axle steering from the AMG GT R
      As standard, the new Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster responds even more sensitively thanks to the active rear axle steering that had its debut in the Mercedes-AMG GT R. The system offers an ideal combination of agility and stability - handling characteristics that are normally in direct conflict.
      Up to a speed of 62 mph, the rear wheels are turned in the opposite direction to the front wheels, resulting in significantly higher agility and increased driving pleasure with less steering input. In day-to-day driving the driver also benefits from a reduced turning circle.
      Once the speed of the AMG GT C Roadster exceeds 62 mph, the system turns the rear wheels in the same direction as the front wheels, this noticeably improves handling stability. At the same time, the lateral force on the rear wheels builds up considerably faster when changing direction, which makes the response to steering inputs quicker. The driver also notices the high grip and stability of the Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster during rapid changes of direction, without the usual tendency for the rear to break out.
      On board as standard: the rear-axle locking differential
      As standard the AMG GT C Roadster is equipped with an electronically controlled locking differential at the rear axle (The Mercedes-AMG GT Roadster comes with a mechanical locking differential), which is integrated into the compact transmission housing. Its sensitive and rapid control elevates the physical handling limits to a new level. It not only further improves the grip of the driven wheels, but also increases cornering speeds at the limit.
      High quality and exclusivity: the interior
      The interior design echoes the design lines of the exterior. The dashboard places an extreme emphasis on width, creating an impression of a powerful wing. High beltlines, concave door panels, dynamically rising center console and low seat position perfectly integrate the driver into the cockpit. The new, light-colored interior in Macchiato Beige Exclusive Nappa leather is available for the first time, lending the open-top sports car even more individuality and exclusivity.
      More lateral support and comfort: AMG Performance seats
      The optionally available AMG Performance seats provide even more lateral support with more heavily contoured backrest and seat cushion side bolsters. For the first time the AMG performance seat is also optionally available with the AIRSCARF® neck-level heating system, which makes open-air driving enjoyable even when the outside temperature is low. The air vent is seamlessly integrated into the seat's head restraint area. To meet the individual preferences of customers, the temperature of the warm airflow can be set in three stages.
      Customers wishing to enjoy comfortable temperatures even on very hot summer days will also opt for seat climate control, which is also available exclusively for the AMG Performance seat for the first time. The intensity of the cooling can also be set in three stages.
      Impressive sound in the interior: Externed Coupled Subwoofer
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      Instead of a subwoofer box of limited dimensions, ECS uses the entire interior as a bass box. This is made possible by a special aperture in the right rear wheel arch. The subwoofer is connected to the bodyshell via this aperture, transmitting the impressive sound.
      The Mercedes-AMG GT Roadster and Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster will arrive in US dealers by fall of 2017.
      Previous Page Next Page
      View full article
    • By William Maley
      Previous Page Next Page Auto show season is upon us and automakers are beginning to reveal their various debuts. For example, Mercedes-AMG has pulled the curtain back on the AMG GT and GT-C Roadsters that will officially debut at the Paris Motor Show later this month.
      Like the GT coupe, the GT Roadster feature the same 4.0L biturbo V8 with different states of tune. The GT Roadster punches out 469 horsepower and 465 pound-feet of torque, and the GT-C features 550 horsepower and 502 pound-feet. Those with keen eyes will note the two roadsters produce more power than their coupe counterparts (GT: 456 horsepower and 443 pound-feet; GT-S: 503 horsepower and 479 pound-feet). Why? Our hunch is due to the added weight. Mercedes isn't disclosing that information at the moment. Both come paired with a seven-speed dual-clutch Speedshift transmission. 0-60 mph times are 3.9 seconds for the GT and 3.7 for the GT-C. 
      The GT-C is an interesting beast. It features remapped programming, a performance exhaust system, a wider rear track, electronic limited-slip differential, and rear-wheel steering. With all of the parts, the GT-C roadster appears to appeal to those hardcore folks who want to put the top down.
      The GT Roadster uses a soft-top that is available in three colors. The top can be put down or up in 11 seconds and at speed up to 31 mph. There is also the active air management system that uses vertical louvers behind the front grille. At low speeds, the louvers close to reduce drag. At higher speeds, the louvers open to provide additional cooling.
      “With our two Roadster models, we are strategically expanding the AMG GT family by two exciting variants. With the AMG GT C Roadster, we are also introducing a new model variant to which we have transferred main performance-related components from our top sports car, the AMG GT R. The result: a highly dynamic driving experience in a very exclusive ambience, coupled with that pure roadster feeling,” said Tobias Moers, chairman of Mercedes-AMG in a statement.
      Mercedes says the AMG GT Roadster will arrive in the U.S. next fall.
      Source: Mercedes-AMG 
      Press Release is on Page 2
      The new Mercedes-AMG GT Roadster and Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster
      Open-top driving performance September 14, 2016 - Affalterbach.
      Mercedes-AMG is blowing even more fresh air into the AMG GT family. Shortly after the world premiere of the AMG GT R, AMG is presenting two exciting roadster variants of the two-seater sports car. Alongside the AMG GT Roadster, the AMG GT C Roadster enhances the portfolio with a completely new model variant. With an output of 550 hp and peak torque of 502 lb-ft, the AMG GT C is the most powerful new Roadster variant and uses some of the technical refinements of the AMG GT R. These include active rear axle steering and the electronically controlled rear axle locking differential. In combination with AMG RIDE CONTROL sport suspension, the AMG GT C Roadster guarantees dynamic performance at the very highest level. The AMG GT C Roadster also takes its lead from the top AMG GT R sports car where muscular proportions are concerned: the wider rear fenders create space for a wider track and wider wheels at the rear axle, allowing for excellent traction and even higher cornering speeds. The variable performance exhaust system also ensures an authentic V8 sound from the AMG Roadster.
      The new Roadsters make hallmark AMG driving performance an even more intensive experience. "With our two Roadster models, we are strategically expanding the AMG GT family by two exciting variants. With the AMG GT C Roadster, we are also introducing a new model variant to which we have transferred main performance-related components from our top sports car, the AMG GT R. The result: a highly dynamic driving experience in a very exclusive ambience, coupled with that pure roadster feeling," says Tobias Moers, Chairman of Mercedes-AMG GmbH.
      With the two Roadster variants the Mercedes-AMG GT family has now increased to five members. The two new sports cars with fabric soft tops likewise have the technical genes for which AMG is famous. These include a lightweight and torsionally rigid aluminum bodyshell plus powerful and efficient V8 biturbo engines. The entry level into the Roadster world is the AMG GT with an output of 469 hp.
      The AMG GT C Roadster adds a completely new output level. With 550 hp it is the more powerful of the two new open-top sports cars.
      Technical data at a glance:
        Mercedes-AMG GT Roadster Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster Engine 4.0-liter V-8 with twin turbochargers and direct injection 4.0-liter V-8 with twin turbochargers and direct injection Displacement 3,982 cc 3,982 cc Output 469 hp at 6,000 rpm 550 hp at 5,750-6,750 rpm Peak torque 465 lb-ft at 1,700-5,000 rpm 502 lb-ft at 1,900-5,750 rpm Drive system Rear-wheel drive Rear-wheel drive Transmission AMG SPEEDSHIFT® DCT 7-speed dual-clutch transmission AMG SPEEDSHIFT® DCT 7-speed dual-clutch transmission Acceleration 0-60 mph 3.9 s 3.7 s Top speed 188 mph 196 mph Rear-axle limited-slip differential mechanical electronically controlled Suspension AMG Sport Suspension AMG RIDE CONTROL Sport Suspension with adaptive, adjustable damping Wheels front / rear 9.0" x 19" / 11" x 19" 9.0" x 19" / 12.0" x 20" Tires front / rear 255/35 R 19 / 
      295/35 R 19 265/35 R19 / 
      305/30 R 20 Brake discs front/rear 14.2" / 14.2" 15.4" / 14.2" Transmission modes four: C, S, S+, I five: C, S, S+, I, RACE The AMG GT C Roadster not only delivers more output and torque, it also impresses with numerous technical highlights from the Mercedes-AMG GT R for even more dynamic performance. Like the AMG GT R, the AMG GT C Roadster is recognizable by its wide, muscular rear end and large wheels. Other technical measures include the wider rear track and active rear axle steering.
      The AMG GT C Roadster is also equipped with a lithium-ion battery and has more exclusive appointments. Standard features include a Nappa leather interior, AMG Performance steering wheel in Nappa leather/DINAMICA microfiber and the additional transmission mode "RACE."
      Fully automatic: the weight-optimized fabric soft top
      Both Roadsters are quickly transformed from coupes to open-top sports cars. The fabric roof opens and closes in around eleven seconds, and can do this at speeds of up to 31 mph. The three soft top colors (black, red and beige) can be chosen to suit the eleven exterior and ten interior colors. The three-layered fabric soft top is supported by a lightweight magnesium/steel/aluminum structure which helps to keep the center of gravity low. Additional rollover protection is provided by an integrated aluminum cross-member with rollover bars.
      New output level: the handcrafted AMG 4.0L V8 biturbo engine
      With the AMG GT C Roadster, Mercedes-AMG is introducing a further output level of the handcrafted 4.0L V8 biturbo engine, thereby underlining the exclusive character of the new model. At 550 hp, the peak output is 47 hp above that of the AMG GT S and 27 hp below the Mercedes-AMG GT R. The maximum torque of 502 lb-ft is available from 1,900 to 5,750 rpm. A sprint from zero to 60 mph is achieved in 3.7 seconds, accelerating on to a top speed of 196 mph.
      The AMG GT Roadster has an output of 469 hp and 465 lb-ft of torque. This variant accelerates to 60 mph in 3.9 seconds and to a top speed of 188 mph.
      The eight-cylinder engine thrills with its immediate response, a linear, finely controllable power delivery and powerful acceleration in all rpm ranges. The handcrafted AMG 4.0L V8 biturbo engine comes with well-proven twin turbocharging, with the two turbochargers not located outside on the cylinder banks, but rather between them in the V of the cylinders. The advantages of the "hot inner V" configuration include a compact engine design, spontaneous response from the turbochargers and low exhaust emissions thanks to optimum air flow for the close-coupled catalytic converters.
      Also adapted: the dual-clutch transmission
      The developers have also adapted the seven-speed dual clutch transmission in a transaxle arrangement at the rear axle to the new power level of the Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster by modifying the hardware and software. The first gear of the AMG SPEEDSHIFT® DCT 7-speed sport transmission has a higher ratio, while seventh gear and the final drive have a lower ratio. This makes for even more agile acceleration and very fast responses to sudden accelerator movements.
      The driver is able to set the AMG GT Roadster to his/her individual requirements using the AMG DYNAMIC SELECT controller. The three transmission modes "C" (Comfort), "S" (Sport), "S+" (Sport Plus) and the individually programmable setup "I" (Individual) allow a broad range of driving experiences from comfortable to very sporty.
      The transmission mode "RACE" is additionally available for the Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster. This mode optimally adjusts the shift strategy of the dual clutch transmission to the needs of the racetrack – very fast shift speeds and highly emotional engine sound are included. By pressing the separate "M" button in the center console, the driver can activate the manual transmission mode.
      Pure sound: the AMG Performance Exhaust System
      The AMG GT C Roadster is equipped with the AMG Performance Exhaust System as standard to obtain an even more emotional sound experience. Two variably adjustable flaps modulate the exhaust note of the Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster authentically and directly. The flaps open and close depending on the selected AMG DRIVE SELECT mode, although they can also be controlled individually using a separate button in the AMG DRIVE UNIT. In the "Comfort" and "Sport" settings, the low-frequency sound typical of a V8 is designed for comfort. In "Sport+" and "RACE" modes the sound composition is far more emotional. The variable AMG Performance Exhaust System is also available as an option for the Mercedes-AMG GT Roadster.
      Also for the Roadster models: active air management system from the AMG GT R
      The two AMG Roadster variants have adopted a special technical highlight from the AMG GT R: the active air management system. Vertical louvers located in the lower area directly behind the front fascia can be opened and closed by an electric motor in around one second. This ensures that the cooling performance is according to need. Always achieving the optimum position requires highly intelligent and fast control.
      During normal driving with no increased cooling requirement, the louvers are closed to reduce aerodynamic drag and specifically conduct the air to the underbody. Only when certain components reach predefined temperatures and the air requirement is particularly high do the louvers open to allow the maximum cooling airflow to the heat exchangers.
      Highly expressive: athletic exterior design
      From the expressive AMG Panamericana grille to the long, muscular hood and the wide rear end, the two-seater guarantees a pure sports car experience even when stationary. The striking AMG Panamericana grille underlines the motor racing heritage: 15 chrome-plated, vertical bars echo the look of the current Mercedes-AMG GT3 customer sports racing car. The new front bumper emphasizes the car's width and gives it an athletic appearance on the road. Large outer air inlets ensure the supply of cooling air to the engine and the pronounced shoulder line is suggestive of a tensed muscle, enhancing the impression of sheer power and athleticism in combination with the new 19-inch and 20-inch AMG light-alloy wheels in a 5-twin-spoke design.
      Muscular with an emphasis on width: the rear end
      The rear end also features numerous, conspicuous innovations. The new aluminum fenders of the AMG GT C Roadster widen the open-top two-seater by 2.25-inches compared to the AMG GT Roadster, making it the same width as the AMG GT R. Compared to the AMG GT Roadster the muscular form also creates space for larger wheels and a wider track. Both measures make for traction while allowing higher cornering speeds. The likewise wider contours at the AMG GT C Roadster's rear bumper improve airflow at the rear with large outer air vents. Both Roadster variants feature a rear spoiler integrated into the trunk lid which can be electrically extended and retracted at defined speeds, depending on the selected transmission mode.
      Greater rigidity and low weight: Intelligent material mix
      Mercedes-AMG also uses an intelligent material mix for the body structure of the AMG GT and GT C Roadster. Various aluminum alloys are used for the chassis and body and magnesium is used for the front deck. This extremely light element at the front reduces the inertia ahead of the front axle, thus improving agility.
      The already rigid bodyshell structure has been specifically reinforced further to take account of the car's design as a roadster: side skirts with greater wall thicknesses and more chambers make the structure more rigid. The dashboard support is braced against the windscreen surround by additional struts and a strut tower brace between the soft top and the tank reinforces the rear axle. A cross-member behind the seats supports the fixed roll-over protection system.
      The trunk lid is particularly light, thanks to an innovative composite material. The load-bearing structure is of SMC (Sheet Molding Compound) with carbon fiber. These high-tech plastics excel with their light weight, great strength and first-class surface condition. These innovative materials were developed by the Mercedes-Benz TEC factory in Sindelfingen and brought to production maturity together with the AMG specialists in Affalterbach. This material combination is used for the first time in the new AMG Roadsters.
      The AMG lightweight construction experts have also used a composite material for the wheel-catching struts. 50 percent lighter than the equivalent in steel, these composite components help to guide the front wheels onto the side members as part of the intended crash kinematics in an accident, and to hold them there.
      Derived from motorsport: the AMG Sport Suspension
      The AMG Sport Suspension likewise confirms the motor racing heritage of the new AMG Roadsters. Wishbones, steering knuckles and hub carriers on the front and rear axle are manufactured entirely out of forged aluminum to reduce the unsprung mass. The wheels are also guided by double wishbones. The resulting precision in camber and track allows high cornering speeds and gives the driver optimum, highly precise road feedback right up to the very high cornering limits.
      In the Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster, the sport suspension is combined with AMG RIDE CONTROL continuously variable, adaptive damping system. The system is electronically controlled and automatically adapts the damping on each wheel to the current handling situation, speed and road conditions.
      Even more agility: active rear axle steering from the AMG GT R
      As standard, the new Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster responds even more sensitively thanks to the active rear axle steering that had its debut in the Mercedes-AMG GT R. The system offers an ideal combination of agility and stability - handling characteristics that are normally in direct conflict.
      Up to a speed of 62 mph, the rear wheels are turned in the opposite direction to the front wheels, resulting in significantly higher agility and increased driving pleasure with less steering input. In day-to-day driving the driver also benefits from a reduced turning circle.
      Once the speed of the AMG GT C Roadster exceeds 62 mph, the system turns the rear wheels in the same direction as the front wheels, this noticeably improves handling stability. At the same time, the lateral force on the rear wheels builds up considerably faster when changing direction, which makes the response to steering inputs quicker. The driver also notices the high grip and stability of the Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster during rapid changes of direction, without the usual tendency for the rear to break out.
      On board as standard: the rear-axle locking differential
      As standard the AMG GT C Roadster is equipped with an electronically controlled locking differential at the rear axle (The Mercedes-AMG GT Roadster comes with a mechanical locking differential), which is integrated into the compact transmission housing. Its sensitive and rapid control elevates the physical handling limits to a new level. It not only further improves the grip of the driven wheels, but also increases cornering speeds at the limit.
      High quality and exclusivity: the interior
      The interior design echoes the design lines of the exterior. The dashboard places an extreme emphasis on width, creating an impression of a powerful wing. High beltlines, concave door panels, dynamically rising center console and low seat position perfectly integrate the driver into the cockpit. The new, light-colored interior in Macchiato Beige Exclusive Nappa leather is available for the first time, lending the open-top sports car even more individuality and exclusivity.
      More lateral support and comfort: AMG Performance seats
      The optionally available AMG Performance seats provide even more lateral support with more heavily contoured backrest and seat cushion side bolsters. For the first time the AMG performance seat is also optionally available with the AIRSCARF® neck-level heating system, which makes open-air driving enjoyable even when the outside temperature is low. The air vent is seamlessly integrated into the seat's head restraint area. To meet the individual preferences of customers, the temperature of the warm airflow can be set in three stages.
      Customers wishing to enjoy comfortable temperatures even on very hot summer days will also opt for seat climate control, which is also available exclusively for the AMG Performance seat for the first time. The intensity of the cooling can also be set in three stages.
      Impressive sound in the interior: Externed Coupled Subwoofer
      The Burmester® Sound System and Burmester® High-End Sound System ensure a very special musical experience in the AMG GT Roadster. Both systems benefit from an innovation developed jointly by AMG and Burmester®: the Externed Coupled Subwoofer (ECS). This new bass sound reproduction system with an extremely low bass range turns the open two-seater into a mobile concert stage.
      Instead of a subwoofer box of limited dimensions, ECS uses the entire interior as a bass box. This is made possible by a special aperture in the right rear wheel arch. The subwoofer is connected to the bodyshell via this aperture, transmitting the impressive sound.
      The Mercedes-AMG GT Roadster and Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster will arrive in US dealers by fall of 2017.
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    • By William Maley
      BMW Group U.S. Reports August 2016 Sales
      BMW brand sales decrease 8.0 percent MINI brand sales decrease 2.7 percent Woodcliff Lake, NJ – September 1, 2016… Sales of BMW brand vehicles decreased 8.0 percent in August for a total of 25,531 compared to 27,755 vehicles sold in August, 2015.  Year-to-date, the BMW brand is down 8.3 percent in the U.S. on sales of 204,744 vehicles compared to 223,348 sold in the first eight months of 2015.
       
      Notable vehicle sales in August include the BMW 7 Series which increased to 1,230 cars, the BMW X3 which increased to 4,668 vehicles, and the BMW X5 which increased to 4,121 vehicles.
       
      “The clear trend toward Sports Activity Vehicles took a good-sized leap forward in August, as our U.S. plant again increased production and availability of the always popular BMW X3 and X5 pushing total X model sales to 44% of BMW retail in the U.S. in August,” said Ludwig Willisch, President and CEO, BMW of North America. “With the production increase, I fully expect the key SAV numbers to remain strong in the U.S. through the end of the year.”
       
      BMW Group Sales
      In total, the BMW Group in the U.S. (BMW and MINI combined) reported August sales of 30,500 vehicles, a decrease of 7.2 percent from the 32,864 vehicles sold in the same month a year ago.  Year-to-date, BMW Group sales are down 9.2 percent on sales of 239,631 vehicles in the first eight months of 2016 compared to 263,908 in the same period in 2015. 
       
      MINI Brand Sales
      For August, MINI USA reported 4,969 automobiles sold, a decrease of 2.7 percent from the 5,109 sold in the same month a year ago.  Year-to-date, MINI USA reported a total of 34,887 automobiles sold, a decrease of 14.0 percent from 40,560 automobiles sold in the first eight months of 2015.

    • By William Maley
      Fiat is possibly adding another derivative of its Miata-based 124. Autocar has learned from sources that the Italian automaker is working a coupe variant. Unlike the retractable hardtop used on the MX-5 Miata RF, Fiat is keeping it simple by designing a regular coupe. It would also give a bit more differentiation between the 124 and Miata.
      We have a possible idea of where Fiat could go with the 124 coupe by looking at Abarth 124 Rally concept that appears to have a hardtop fitted permanently. Some sources say Fiat could change the design of the rear to better integrate the coupe roofline. 
      Power is currently undecided at the moment. Certain markets could get a 1.4L four-cylinder with 138 horsepower, while others may get the turbocharged 1.4L with 158 horsepower. There is talk about an Abarth model with 178 horsepower and limited-slip differential.
      Autocar says the 124 Coupe could be shown as soon as next year. 
      Source: Autocar

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      Fiat is possibly adding another derivative of its Miata-based 124. Autocar has learned from sources that the Italian automaker is working a coupe variant. Unlike the retractable hardtop used on the MX-5 Miata RF, Fiat is keeping it simple by designing a regular coupe. It would also give a bit more differentiation between the 124 and Miata.
      We have a possible idea of where Fiat could go with the 124 coupe by looking at Abarth 124 Rally concept that appears to have a hardtop fitted permanently. Some sources say Fiat could change the design of the rear to better integrate the coupe roofline. 
      Power is currently undecided at the moment. Certain markets could get a 1.4L four-cylinder with 138 horsepower, while others may get the turbocharged 1.4L with 158 horsepower. There is talk about an Abarth model with 178 horsepower and limited-slip differential.
      Autocar says the 124 Coupe could be shown as soon as next year. 
      Source: Autocar
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