You are here

Ten things we learned in New York

  1. This week we’ve been at the New York motor show - North America’s other other automotive launch pad behind the Detroit and LA-based events.

    But despite its diddy size, there are many things to see here. New metal and insights of the future from BMW, Jaguar, and Mercedes, fist-bitingly heinous custom cars, a selection of classics, and Americans wearing clothes we can only assume are counterpoints to modern fashion.

    Now click on the full download. Expect controversial naming decisions, dead Freelanders, and Minis styled by Xerox.

  2. Mercedes will drop Benz from its name

    It’s irredeemably pompous to tell people you drive a ‘Mercedes-Benz’. So it’s with some relief that we can report the company’s decision to drop the Benz bit for its upcoming GT model. Instead, it’ll be called the Mercedes-AMG.

    MB’s rationale is that it’ll cast a bit more limelight on the in-house tuning arm, “positioning AMG more vehemently and aggressively”, according to Tobias Moers, boss of the subsidiary.

    Presumably a hybrid version will follow, powered by the same 4.0-litre V8 twinned with energy captured from company founder, Karl Benz, spinning in his grave.

  3. The new Mini Countryman looks exactly the same as the old one

    Seriously. Try and spot the difference between this and the old one.

    There’s a fractionally different front grille, pair of LED fog lights and, er, that’s about it.

    The second coming of the all-wheel-drive has been a bit more thoroughgoing - it gets swollen sills, and new bumpers fore and aft.

    On the off chance these changes have moved you to buy one, you’ll have to wait until summer when it lands in UK showrooms.

  4. Nissan might bring the Murano to Blighty

    The concepty third-gen Murano just made its debut here, but company bosses aren’t sure if they’ll bring it to our mossy rock.

    Shame, really. Behind the angry face there’s a 3.5-litre naturally aspirated V6, 260bhp, and the new stepped X-Tronic constantly variable transmission. It’s slippery, too - aero’s been improved by 16 per cent over the old model, and it’s now rated at 0. 31cd. The same as a Lamborghini Diablo.

    Shout REALLY LOUDLY if you dig it.

  5. The Mustang Convertible really wants your attention

    Once every 50 years, Ford puts a Mustang Convertible on top of the Empire State Building.

    And by that, we mean it’s done it twice - once in April 1964, then again on April 16 2014. It’s not just helicoptered in though. On both occasions, Ford chopped one of the cars up into several pieces, putting them in a lift, then reassembled the car 1000 feet above Manhattan on the building’s 86th-floor Observation Deck.

    Watch the dry run build for the Empire State building here

  6. The Freelander is dead. Long live the Freelander

    Waiting for the Freelander replacement? Don’t, because Land Rover’s killed it. Well, killed the name at least. Instead it’s going to be called the Discovery Sport, and slot beneath a posher Disco.

    There’ll be four new Discos to begin with, one of which will be a seven-seat Sport. We really hope it gets the new tech Land Rover’s promised us.

  7. The new Dodge Challenger's got a really bad name

    This is the Challenger Scat Pack Shaker, which has prompted a TOP GEAR TOP TIP: When naming a car, Google it without SafeSearch switched on.

    Get over the name and the new Scat Pack’s pretty cool. It’s fitted with a 478bhp, 350lb ft 6.4-litre V8 and has an exposed engine cover that visually shakes with the motor. Dodge reckons it’ll hit 60mph in around 4.5 seconds and go on to 182mph. Still no official Vanishing Point edition though.

    Gallery: the ten weirdest company car tie ins

  8. The new Corvette Convertible is the first drop-top Z06 for 50 years

    In 1963, when America was in analogue format and the internet was all fields, Corvette offered a special Z06 package for endurance racing. 199 were built, and one of them was a rag-top. More than 50 years later, the General’s finally got round to following it up.

    Apart from the lidlessness, the coupe and convertible aren’t very different at all. The C7 ‘Vette’s aluminium chassis was already 20 per cent stiffer than the old C6 Z06, so GM didn’t bother with any structural changes. And engine wise, it’s the same blown 6.2-litre V8, with around 625bhp running through either a seven-speed manual or eight-speed auto’. That’s more than double the original car’s power output…

  9. Mazda wants a sub-1000kg MX5

    We saw the new chassis, got a bit excited, then descended into a full fizz when we realised that the next MX-5 could weigh as little as 1000kg.

    See, the current 1.8 convertible weighs 1150kg, which Mazda’s whittled more than 100kg from with the new chassis alone. Using more lightweight Skyactiv tech, a further 50kg weight less is entirely plausible…

  10. Alfa's back in the USA after 20 years

    Shoddy build quality eventually chased Alfa Romeo out of the states, but after having a long, hard look at itself, the company’s back with the 4C.

    There are 500 Launch Edition models available, but they’ll be plaque-and-paperwork specials, and pack the same 259bhp per tonne as the Euro version.

  11. The S63 AMG coupe gets from 0-62mph in 3.9 seconds

    Yep, three point nine seconds. How the hell does that work?

    Power, mainly. The £100,000 coupe has AMG’s twin-turbocharged 5.5-litre V8 engine, which belts out 577bhp and 663lb ft. But four-wheel drive helps, too. Only the 4Matic version can hit 62mph in less than 4.0 seconds - the rear-drive version takes a dithering 4.3.

What do you think?

This service is provided by Disqus and is subject to their privacy policy and terms of use. Please read Top Gear’s code of conduct (link below) before posting.

Promoted content