This week in cars: Next-gen Toyota Land Cruiser launch date, Bugatti La Voiture Noire

It looks like it’s going to be a busy month ahead
by | Jun 6, 2021

Toyota to unveil the next-generation Land Cruiser on June 9

“No, the all-new Toyota Land Cruiser isn’t a myth. It may have taken forever, but the Japanese car manufacturer is finally set to reveal the latest iteration of its iconic  SUV.

Toyota Bahrain has revealed that the next-generation Toyota Land Cruiser, the LC300, will make its debut on June 9. The brand made the news official through its social-media accounts. 

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“As far as teasers go, this is about as obscure as they come. The entire clip lasts about six seconds, and all we’re given a look at is the vehicle’s shadow-draped grille from an angle. Numerous leaks and spy shots leading up to this news, however, mean practically the whole Internet has a good idea of what the actual product will look like.”

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Bugatti has finally completed the Chiron-based La Voiture Noire one-off

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“Over two years since we first saw it at the 2019 Geneva International Motor Show, the Bugatti La Voiture Noire is done. Finished. Ready for immediate, Amazon Prime-style dispatch to its new owner, a ‘Bugatti enthusiast’ who paid €11 million (P640 million) before tax for this remarkable Chiron-based one-off hypercar. What. A. Thing.

“Thought to be the most expensive new car ever (though that record may have just been broken by the Rolls-Royce Boat Tail), the La Voiture Noire is a homage to Jean Bugatti’s Type 57 Atlantic, which mysteriously vanished from a train traveling between the company’s Molsheim factory and Bordeaux in 1940. Were it to be found, it would likely be the most valuable car ever. Just four Atlantics were built, and Ralph Lauren, who owns one of the two survivors, reportedly turned down an offer of $100 million for his.

“Like the other ‘coachbuilt’ Bugattis—the Divo and the Centodieci—the LVN is a Chiron underneath. But Bugatti claims its coachbuilt cars are ‘very distinct’ from one another, and from the car on which they’re based, in terms of their character and how they feel to drive. The LVN, for example, has more of a grand-tourer vibe. We don’t know exactly how Bugatti has achieved this far as setup goes, but the company has confirmed the LVN’s wheelbase is 250mm longer, and its body 450mm longer, than a standard Chiron’s.”

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Kia has released the new Seltos Nightfall Edition in the US

Kia has just updated the Seltos in the US, and it appears the crossover gets some upgrades that we wouldn’t mind seeing here in our market, too.

“There’s some nifty tech that’s been added to its arsenal. Forward-collision avoidance assist with pedestrian detection, lane-keeping and -following assist, lane departure warning, driver attention warning, and high beam assist are now standard across the lineup.

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“There’s also a new 10.25-inch infotainment system with UVO link connectivity, automatic A/C controls, and a remote-start function added to all except the base LX trim. An optional plum interior is now also available in the top-of-the-line variant. These are all rather desirable upgrades, aren’t they?

“But apart from all these, one thing we reckon would also be nice to have here is the new Nightfall Edition variant, which is the snazzy Seltos pictured above. It’s got all the goodies including all-wheel-drive with some blacked-out bits added into the mix—similar to treatment we saw Kia give the Telluride a while back.”

These accessories for the Nissan Navara now available in PH

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“The refreshed Nissan Navara is arguably one of the most stylish pickups in the segment right now, especially that macho top-spec Pro-4X variant. Nissan has made some substantial changes to its burly truck, and it’s a big improvement from the pre-facelift model.

“That being said, we know a lot of Filipino pickup owners are also big on aftermarket goodies. Yes, the bone-stock Navara looks pretty darn good already, but we’re sure a lot of potential owners have plans to dress it up the moment it rolls out the dealership. If you’re one of those guys, here’s something that might interest you: OEM accessories for the new Navara.

Nissan Philippines has released the entire catalog of accessories on its website, and we think these will have many pickup lovers gushing.

“The catalog includes an over-fender, a rear tailgate garnish, and headlamp and taillight finishers. There’s also a door visor, a fender and fuel-gate garnish, a door-handle protector, a kicking plate, and an exhaust-pipe finisher. All these accessories are available for all Navara variants save for the over-fender—that one isn’t applicable for the Pro-4X.”

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Mercedes-Benz launches the V-Class with captain’s chairs in PH

“Anyone else here a fan of captain’s chairs? There’s just simply no better way to stay energized (and sane) in traffic than having a ride where you can sit back and stretch your legs. If you’ve ever experienced being transported by a vehicle equipped with them on the regular, there’s no going back.

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“Agree? If your answer is yes and you have a modest budget to upgrade, then the Mercedes-Benz V-Class with ‘Luxury Seats’ might interest you.

Auto Nation Group, the German brand’s official Philippine distributor, has brought in the V-Class 220d equipped with Luxury Seats carrying a starting price of P4.69 million. It’s a premium ride and, as such, comes with one of the plushest cabins in the market.

“The main draw here, though, is the aforementioned Luxury Seats. They’re located in the second row of the vehicle and feature six-way power adjustment. This allows the occupants to sit in a reclined position of up to 60 degrees. Passengers looking to get work done, meanwhile, can take advantage of a folding table that can also be used in the second row.”

Kia gives us a glimpse of the next-gen Sportage

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“The Kia Sportage is getting an overhaul. The first teaser images for the next-generation compact SUV have been revealed, and it appears the South Korean car manufacturer has made some drastic changes—at least design-wise.

“As with most teasers, the brand has done as much as possible to conceal the vehicle’s new look. The all-new Sportage is draped in shadows, but we do get a look at its face, fenders, and rear. From what we’re seeing, expect an aesthetic that’s equal parts muscular and refined. The sleek C-shaped headlights are a nice touch, while the tapered roofline and large taillights add convey a sense of sportiness and ruggedness, respectively.

“The whole appearance is much more modern than its predecessor’s, and Kia says its  ‘Opposites United’ design philosophy is at the heart of the look.

“Inside, we’re given a peek at the Sportage’s new dashboard, which features a curved unified touchscreen infotainment screen and digital instrument cluster. There’s some nice metal or faux metal trim in there, modern A/C vents, as well as a new steering wheel featuring the brand’s revamped logo. Nice.”

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The Toyota Land Cruiser Prado is getting an anniversary edition over in Japan

“So, the all-new Toyota Land Cruiser is set to be unveiledpretty big news considering we’ve been waiting forever for this news. It’s not the only news regarding Land Cruiser name, though.

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“Over in Japan, the carmaker is celebrating the Land Cruiser’s 70th birthday with a special-edition anniversary release of the Land Cruiser Prado. Alterations are pretty subtle and all purely aesthetic (no mention of changes to the 2.8-liter diesel or 2.7-liter gasoline), but hey, more Land Cruiser news!

“Outside, the Land Cruiser Prado 70th Anniversary Limited gets upgrades like a blacked-out front grille, new headlight and foglight trim, piano black roof rails, as well as blacked-out 18-inch aluminum wheels. The rear, meanwhile, flaunts some new black trim as well as special ‘70th Anniversary’ badging.

“It’s tempting to pair these enhancements with a black paint job, but they contrast so nicely with white that it’s hard to argue with opting for a cleaner appearance. Inside, you’ll still find plenty of leather bits and a relatively rugged design. Toyota is also throwing in some special floor mats with ‘70th Anniversary’ embroidery, too.”

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Ford is launching the new Maverick compact pickup on June 8

“It seems Ford still has its hands full, as it has just announced that another truck is on its way real soon. This isn’t another electric pickup like the F-150 Lightning, though. And no, this isn’t another special-edition Ranger, either.

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“What Ford will be revealing on June 8 is an all-new compact pickup called the Maverick. So, not only is the American carmaker downsizing this time around, but it’s also reviving a classic name.

“Ford has already released a teaser, and starring in it is Gabrielle Union. The actress will also be the one to showcase the new pickup on Ford’s various platforms once it debuts in a matter of days. You can check out the preview here.

BMW has fully unveiled the all-electric i4 and i4 M50

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After a sneaky preview back in March, BMW has finally revealed the i4 EV in all its toothy glory. We now know Brits will be able to choose between two models when it goes on sale here in November. There’s the i4 eDrive40, which starts at £51,905 (P3.5 million). And then there’s the £63,905 (P4.3 million) i4 M50, which BMW bills as “the first purely electric performance car from BMW M.”

Whether or not it’s a proper M car is up for debate, mind you—the M50 appears closer philosophically to an M340i than it is to an M3—but it is still hugely fast. Hit the ‘Sport Boost’ button to liberate the full 537hp and 794Nm from its two e-motors, and you’ll hit 100kph in a claimed 3.9sec. The single-motor, rear-drive, 335hp eDrive 40 takes a still respectable 5.7sec.

The base car can travel further on a charge though. While both cars use the same 83.9kWh battery (gross), the eDrive40 is much more efficient, with a claimed WLTP range of 629km versus 591km WLTP for the M50. The drag coefficient is an impressive 0.24Cd.

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Both cars can charge at a max rate of 200kW, which means a ten-minute stop could yield 164km of added range for the eDrive 40, or 140km for the M50. Oh, and i4 customers get subscription-free access to BP Pulse and Ionity Plus charging for the first 12 months of ownership.

Rimac has officially unveiled the all-electric 1,914hp Nevera

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“It feels like it’s been a decade already since we first heard of Rimac Automobili’s 1,000hp++ all-electric hypercar. Not that it matters, because the Croatian company has now fully unveiled its staggeringly powerful EV in its full production form. And guess what? It has a proper name now, too.

“This, ladies and gents, is the Rimac Nevera. Not the Concept One or the C_Two—the Nevera. With that proper name comes proper hypercar figures: 1,914hp2360Nm, and a top speed of 412kph. It does 0-97kph in an eyewatering 1.85sec, up to 161kph in 4.3sec, and 300kph in 9.3sec. The company describes it as “out of this world acceleration,” and we’re not here to argue.

“The Nevera’s ‘exhaustively reworked’ electric powertrain comprises a 120kWh, 6,960-cell battery with an advanced cooling system that allows prolonged power delivery. The power is then generated by four bespoke surface-mounted permanent magnet motors (one for each wheel). The front and rear wheels, meanwhile, are each connected to a pair of single-speed gearboxes.

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“The all-electric hypercar also features Rimac’s All-Wheel Torque Vectoring 2 system that improves grip and traction, taking the place of traditional electronic stability program and traction control systems. This setup also facilitates the seven different drive modes available: Sport, Drift, Comfort, Range, Track, and two additional custom settings.”

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