COVID-19

Giveaway of new Morgan Plus Four raises millions for charity

The Plus Four is Morgan's newest car, joining the Plus Six and Plus Three.

Photo courtesy of Morgan Motoring Company

The Morgan Motor Company has helped raise $3.4 million USD with the giveaway of a new Plus Four during BBC Children in Need and Comic Relief's "The Big Night In" appeal. The car is worth £62,995 before options.

Around $1.7 million USD in chances to win the car were entered, by interested parties who texted the keyword CAR to a short code then were able to make a $10 voluntary donation to the cause. Those monies will be matched by the U.K. government. The money raised will be split between Comic Relief and Children in Need and will go on to support a variety of charities and projects in the U.K.

2020 Morgan Plus Four The Plus Four debuted just a few months ago.Photo courtesy of Morgan Motoring Company

The winner of the model has been chosen and, after the lockdown has been lifted, they, along with a select group of their friends and family, will be welcomed to the Morgan factory in Malvern, Worcestershire, England to choose their final specification. Once the car has been delivered, Morgan will also cover the cost of the winner's first year of tax and insurance on the car, as well as servicing for two years.

The Plus Four was unveiled just two months ago. It has a bonded aluminum platform and gets its power from a twin-turbocharged 2.0-liter engine that produces 255 bhp. The car can get from zero to 62 mpg in 4.8 seconds and has a top speed of 149 mph. It comes with the buyer's choice of a six-speed manual or an eight-speed automatic gearbox.

Morgan has a long history, having craved automobiles in Britain since 1909. The company has recently undergone a revitalization following an investment by Investindustrial. Last year, 850 Morgans were built with 70 percent of them being exported to the company's dealerships in 32 countries.

Morgan recently celebrated six decades of partnership with their dealership in the Netherlands by creating an exclusive series of five special edition models.

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Nuts & Bolts

 
 

The second-generation Acura TLX has debuted, packing a heck of a punch.

Photo courtesy of Acura

Acura has been teasing the return of a performance-focused sedan to its lineup for years now. Behind the scenes, plans have been in place to bring back some of the sports flavor to the Acura lineup that made it so popular two decades ago. Today, the first part of that puzzle has been revealed: the 2021 Acura TLX.

As it turns out, Acura had already given away many clues about the TLX, showing off a darn close version of it as the Type S prototype at the 2019 Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance. With its elongated wheelbase and low roofline, the TLX looks every bit the sports sedan.

The All-New 2021 Acura TLX: Reveal www.youtube.com

Exterior

The car's exterior showcases Acura Precision Concept design with an expansive hood, tapered windows, and muscular rear haunches. Its wheelbase is 3.7 inches longer in the new generation. The car also has a 2.2-inch wider body, wider off-set tracks in the front and rear (+1.2 in. and +1.6 in., respectively), a lower roof (-0.6 inches), and an extended dash-to-axle dimension (+7.8 in.).

The second-generation TLX is faced by an upright diamond pentagon grille that is flanked by lighting originally showcased on the Type S Concept. Under the headlamp cover are new Jewel Eye LED headlights with four LED elements and bright-white "Chicane" LED daytime running lights inspired by the championship-winning Acura ARX-05 Daytona Prototype race car. At the back are LED taillights and exposed dual exhaust.

The TLX rides on standard 18-inch wheels. Nineteen inchers are available in a variety of finishes, depending on trim level. TLX Type S models will be equipped with 20-inch split-10 spoke alloy wheels finished in Shark Gray. Buyers can upgrade to a lightweight wheel inspired by the NSX "Y-spoke" design that will be offered alongside a high-performance summer tire.

2021 Acura TLX An available A-Spec package puts black accents on the car but doesn't include any performance upgrades.Photo courtesy of Acura

Acura will make its popular A-Spec appearance package available on the TLX. It will include Shark Grey 19-inch wheels, gloss black accents front to rear, darkened headlight and taillight treatment, and a pronounced rear decklid spoiler.

The company will sell the model in nine exterior finishes including five premium colors. New to the TLX for 2021 is Phantom Violet Pearl. The TLX Type S will be offered in an exclusive, bold Tiger Eye Pearl. Apex Blue Pearl, previously available only on A-Spec models, will be added to the Type S catalog.

Powertrain

Buyers will have their choice between two turbocharged engines. A 2.0-liter turbo-four is standard and paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission. It delivers 272 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque. This base engine delivers more power than even the high-end 3.5-liter V6 in the previous generation model.
The TLX Type S will be powered by a turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 that is paired with the same 10-speed automatic transmission. However, Type S models will receive unique transmission tuning to provide an aggressive and responsive characteristic during performance driving scenarios. Final specifications for the new engine, including power output, will be released closer to launch timing. The car will have paddle shifters.

Drivers will be able to choose between Comfort, Normal, and Sport drive modes. TLX Type S models also get a Sport+ mode.

Ride and Handling

The 2021 TLX rides on a new platform that was designed for the sports car. The performance-focused chassis has a double wishbone front suspension, the same as what is in the redesigned 2021 BMW 5 Series and the current Acura NSX. This is in place of the common MacPherson strut setup that is favored by many other sedans.

The car also has a variable-ratio steering system, electro-servo brake-by-wire technology (applied from the NSX), and an available driver selectable Adaptive Damper System.

2021 Acura TLX The car features an elongated wheelbase.Photo courtesy of Acura

The architecture of the car is the most rigid that Acura has ever produced. It delivers a 50 percent increase in global torsional stiffness and up to a 100 percent improvement in localized rigidity where the suspension is mounted to the body. The new structure uses 56 percent (by weight) advanced, lightweight materials, including aluminum and press-hardened steel, more than any previous Acura sedan.

Acura has used aluminum extensively on the body and placed the car's 12-volt battery in the trunk to give the car a good front to rear balance ratio.

Acura is offering all variants of the car with all-wheel drive. Acura calls their rear-biased system Super Handling All-Wheel Drive (SH-AWD) and it delivers industry-leading torque-vectoring all-wheel drive technology. The TLX Type S comes standard with the tech.

Interior

The cabin of the TLX takes a heavy nod from the RDX, which was redesigned for the 2019 model year. Its premium appointments and driver-centric cockpit design put the car in line with the expectations of sports car enthusiasts who may have been turning to German brands to satisfy their need for speed.

2021 Acura TLX TLX models will be available with a red and black leather interior. Photo courtesy of Acura

While a high center turned divides the car up front, it creates a dual-cockpit-like design for the driver and front passenger. However, because of the extended width of the next-gen model, Acura doesn't expect occupants to feel pinched.

Sporty front seats provide 16-way power customized adjustability for the driver and front passenger.

A total of seven interior color options will be offered on the 2021 TLX. Ebony, Espresso, Graystone and Parchment will be offered on the standard TLX models, depending on trim. TLX A-Spec and TLX Type S models will feature either Ebony or Red Leather, both with black Ultrasuede inserts. Additionally, the TLX Type S will offer an exclusive Light Orchid leather interior option.

The car features real aluminum, open-pore wood, and full-grain Milano leather appointments. The steering wheel is wrapped in leather. In A-Spec and Type S models, that wheel is flat-bottomed.

Infotainment

At the center of the dashboard is a 10.2-inch infotainment screen that is navigated using the driver-oriented True Touchpad Interface. This is the same system setup as in the RDX. Physical power, volume, and seek control buttons are mounted next to the touchpad.

2021 Acura TLX The car's center stack is straight from the RDX playbook, with some fine tuning.Photo courtesy of Acura

In front of the driver is a 7-inch multi-information display in the middle of the center gauge cluster. A 10.5-inch full-color head up display is available, as is the Acura ELS Studio 3D premium audio system.

Safety

The new TLX also features the latest generation of AcuraLink with in-vehicle 4G LTE Wi-Fi with over-the-air software update capability and a variety of available cloud-based services, including emergency roadside assistance, remote locking/unlocking and engine start, stolen vehicle tracking, remote diagnostics, geofencing, speed tracking and Acura concierge services.

All models will come equipped with the latest version of AcuraWatch safety and driver assistance technology.

On-sale date and pricing

The 2021 TLX will arrive at dealerships early this fall with a manufacturer suggested retail price (MSRP) starting in the mid-$30,000 range. The 2021 Acura TLX Type S will arrive in the spring of 2021. The new TLX will be manufactured exclusively at the company's Marysville, Ohio plant.

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Work has begun on movie replica cars from the famous Bond film "Goldfinger".

Photo courtesy of Aston Martin

Did you happen to catch a few minutes of the James Bond movie marathon on AMC over Memorial Day weekend? With the release of the most installment of the series postponed, there has been a bit of a news void about the world's most beloved spy. Until now.

Aston Martin has once again begun production of the DB5, a model that is considered one of the most desirable cars in the world. Originally, just 900 saloon examples were built between 1963 to 1965. Bond drove one in "Goldfinger".

Fifty-five years after the first model rolled off the line in Newport Pagnell, Buckinghamshire, work is again happening on a limited number of new DB5 models in association with the producers of the James Bond films, EON Productions. Each car takes around 4,500 hours to produce.

Aston Martin DB5 "Goldfinger" Continuation car production

Photo courtesy of Aston Martin

These models will be known as continuation cars and features a broad suite of working gadgets first seen on screen in the 1964 film are priced at £2.75 million, plus taxes. Just 25 will be made.

According to a release, "Each of the 25 new cars is being built to the highest possible quality using a blend of Sir David Brown-era old world craftsmanship, with the sympathetic application of modern engineering advancements and performance enhancements, alongside the integration of cutting-edge gadgets developed in association with Chris Corbould OBE, the special effects supervisor who has worked on more than a dozen Bond films."

All of the cars are a meticulous reproduction of the one Sean Connery drove in character on screen.

The exterior features a rear smoke screen delivery system, rear simulated oil slick delivery system, front and rear revolving number plates, simulated twin front machine guns, bullet resistant rear shield, front and rear battering rams, simulated tire slasher, removable passenger seat roof panel (optional).

Rare Bond Car To be Sold At Automobiles Of London Auction This is the 1964 Aston Martin DB5 that was used in the "Goldfinger" and "Thunderball" movies. It recently went under the hammer. Photo by Getty Images

Additionally, the cabin includes a simulated radar screen tracker map, telephone in the driver's door, gear knob actuator button, armrest and centre console-mounted switchgear, under-seat hidden weapons/storage tray, and remote control for gadget activation.

All the DB5 "Goldfinger" Continuation cars are being built to one exterior color specification – Silver Birch paint – just like the original.

The cars feature original DB5 styled aluminum exterior body panels and a mild steel chassis. Under the hood lives a 4.0-liter inline six-cylinder engine, three carburetors, and oil cooler. The power plant achieves 290 bhp and is paired with a five-speed ZF manual transmission. It also has a mechanical limited slip differential.

Additional equipment is very much of the car's original production time. There are Servo-assisted hydraulic Girling-type steel disc brakes, rack and pinion steering – which does not feature assistance – and a suspension set-up comprising coil over spring and damper units with anti-roll bar at the front, and a live axle rear suspension with radius arms and Watt's linkage.

Rare Bond Car To be Sold At Automobiles Of London Auction The car featured a number of gadgets that were installed for the movie, including machine guns under the fog lights. Photo by Getty Images

The latest in Aston Martin's phenomenally successful Continuation car programme which began in 2017 with the DB4 GT

First deliveries of the DB5 Goldfinger Continuation to customers will commence in the second half of 2020.

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