New Model News

Tesla Cybertruck controversially breaks the conventional truck mold

Last night, Tesla unveiled its long-awaited truck to the world.

Photo courtesy of Tesla Motors

Remember the time when Ford's aluminum bed and GMC's Multi-Pro tailgate were the most outside-the-box thing in the truck world? That was yesterday. Then, Tesla revealed its long-awaited electric pickup truck, the Tesla Cybertruck, to a collective gasp.

The gasp wasn't just from truck traditionalists, it was from auto enthusiasts and tech giants, stock brokers and EV startup companies. Many people expected many different things from the Tesla truck, but what they saw on stage next to Tesla CEO Elon Musk wasn't what most envisioned.

Off the bat, there are two words that come to mind looking at the truck - risk and chance. While Car Twitter bemoans the similarities between much of the vehicles in the crossover market day in and day out, the team at Tesla was taking inspiration from the film "Blade Runner" and designing something futuristic and unconventional.

Prior to the reveal, Musk teased the truck's design inspiration.

He tweeted that the truck could possibly be used on Mars (without revealing the logistics of any type of operation that would get it there).

There's been no word yet on who at Mars Tesla should write a check to in order to receive "Official Truck of Mars" status.

The truck has the traditional truck components. There's a cab and bed, wheels, power source, and a drivetrain. Sure, it's not a muscular beast like the Ford F-150 or even the Rivian R1T, but that doesn't make it less of a truck, does it?

Consider the stats. The Cybertruck has the ability to tow more than 14,000 pounds and can handle a payload of up to 3,500 pounds. Those numbers are head and shoulders above what the Honda Ridgeline, Toyota Tacoma, and Nissan Titan offer.

The bed has 100 cubic feet of cargo space. That's about twice what the 2018 Chevrolet Silverado short box delivered. None of the pickups currently on the market, with the exception of the Ridgeline, offer an under bed or frunk lockable storage area. Tesla is offering a frunk in the Cybertruck.

The body of the Tesla truck is made of steel, just like the body of most other trucks.

The design was risky and Tesla, a publicly traded company, took a chance. Love it or hate it, the Cybertruck is here. Well, at least one of them is.

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The Porsche Taycan Cross Turismo brings an adventurous spirit to the table.

Photo courtesy of Porsche AG

Imagine a Porsche 911 with a long, wagon-like back end and you end up with something like the Porsche Panamera. Make the 911 a Taycan, Porsche's fully-electric sports sedan, give it a wagon-like back end and increased ground clearance, and you have the 2022 Porsche Taycan Cross Turismo.

Porsche says that the new model "draws on the strengths of its sport sedan sibling" giving buyers an idea of what to expect - a performance-focused driving style, sure-footedness, and a refined interior. The increased ground clearance via a standard air suspension and added cargo capacity make the Taycan Cross Turismo more adventure-ready.

The fresh body style give rear seat occupants 0.35 inches more legroom and 3.62 inches more headroom. With the rear seats folded, there's 42.8 cubic feet of cargo space, about 10 cubic feet less than what's in the 2021 Porsche Macan. With the seats erect, the differential is in the Macan's favor by just under two cubic feet (15.7 vs. 17.6). The Taycan Cross Turismo has 2.9 cubic feet of cargo space in the front, something the Macan doesn't have (because that's where its engine is).

2022 Porsche Taycan Cross Turismo

Photo courtesy of Porsche AG

Roof rails are standard. A roof transport system and rear-mounted bike rack are available via Telequipment. The Off Road Design Package adds additional body cladding and raises the ride height an additional 10 millimeters (0.39 inches).

The boutique automaker will launch the model in four grades: Taycan 4 Cross Turismo, Taycan 4S Cross Turismo, Taycan Turbo Cross Turismo, and Taycan Turbo S Cross Turismo. All models will features dual-motor all-wheel drive, a two-speed rear transmission, Porsche Adaptive Suspension Management in conjunction with air suspension, Performance Battery Plus and its 800-volt battery architecture, adaptive aerodynamics, a panoramic glass roof.

The Taycan Cross Turismo will come standard with a Gravel drive model, meant for driving situations that need more traction than most. But, in no way should the car be considered anything more than dirt-path ready. The car is quipped with more cladding than the traditional Taycan in order to prevent paint chips and body damage.

Porsche says that Taycan Turbo S Cross Turismo can accelerate from a stop to 60 miles per hour in 2.7 seconds while the Taycan Turbo Cross Turismo can make the sprint to 60 mph in just 3.1 seconds. The Taycan 4S Cross Turismo and Taycan 4 Cross Turismo can get to 60 mph in 3.9 and 4.8 seconds respectively.

Three years of free Electrify America charging is also included with every model.

Buyers will be able to order theres in a number of color ways, interior schemes, and Cross Turismo specific items such as the Off Road Design Package and 20-inch Off Road Design or 21-inch Cross Turismo Design wheels. There are 21,000 total combinations based solely on variant, wheel choice, exterior color, and interior selection.

Porsche's PCM infotainment and navigation system are standard. Wireless Apple CarPlay, Function on Demand, Plug and Charge capabilities, Apple Music, over-the-air updates for three years. Bose and Burmester audio systems and 14-way power-adjustable seats with massage functionality are available.

Adaptive cruise control, park assist, a head-up display, and lane keep assist will also be available.

The Taycan Cross Turismo models start at $90,900, not including the $1,350 destination charge. The Taycan Cross Turismo is expected to arrive at U.S. dealerships in summer 2021. EPA range figures will be announced closer to market launch.

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The McLaren Artura is a new hybrid supercar.

Photo courtesy of McLaren

The McLaren Artura is the company's first series-production high-performance hybrid supercar and, like everything else McLaren does, they're not letting the natural forces of the Earth get into the way of a good time behind the wheel.

It's more than just a modern car. The Arturo is a way forward for McLaren. It's built on the McLaren Carbon Lightweight Architecture, a new platform that allows for engaging drive dynamics and a hybrid powertrain.

The car is designed to have a low-nose, cab-forward, high-tail stance. It has dihedral doors, a short wheelbase, and low stance. McLaren describes the car as looking "almost 'shrink-wrapped''.

Mclaren Artura The Artura is ready for the track or street.Photo courtesy of McLaren

Mclaren Artura

The Artura's powertrain features a twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 engine that is paired with an electric motor and 7.4-kilowatt-hour battery pack. The power supply produces 671 brake horsepower and 531 pound-feet of torque. Up to 166 pound-feet of torque is available instantaneously, at the push of a throttle. That gets the car from zero to 60 mph in 3.0 seconds, zero to 124 mph in 8.3 seconds, and zero to 186 mph in 21.5 seconds.

The Artura's lithium-ion battery consists of five modules that are refrigerant called using cooling rails. The assembly is bolted onto the rear base of the monocoque. The car delivers 19 miles of all-electric range.

Owners charge the vehicle via a plug-in hybrid power outlet. It can be charged to an 80 percent level in just 2.5 hours with a standard cable. Batteries can harvest power from the V6 while the car is operational. That harvesting is tailored depending on the drive mode selected.

An eight-speed automatic transmission is standard. It pairs with McLaren's first electronic differential. It has an upgraded electro-hydraulic steering and Proactive Damping Control, which are deigned to enhance agility, stability, and dynamic performance.

McLaren Artura

Photo courtesy of McLaren

The total weight of all hybrid components is 287 pounds (194-pound battery pack and a 34-pound electric motor). The car has a dry weight of 3,075 and a wet weight of 3,303 pounds. That all-in weight is on-par with other supercars that aren't hybrids.

Four Powertrain models, including an E-mode for all-electric driving, Comfort mode for range and efficiency, Sport for more aggressive driving, and Track for premium performance. Separate handling mode choices adjust damper firmness and the degree of Electronic Stability Control intervention to suit driver preference and weather and road conditions. Drivers can choose Powertrain and Handling modes via a steering wheel control without their hands leaving the wheel.

The car's wheels are wrapped in next-gen Pirelli P Zero Corsa tires. The Cyber Tires generate real-time data and relay it to the car's stability control systems to optimize tire performance.

The interior sports standard power-adjustable seats and Homelink. Vehicle nose lift, power folding mirrors, carbon ceramic brakes, and soft close doors are also standard.

U.S. customers get standard power-adjustable heated Comfort Seats with memory. They can upgrade to new Clubsport seats that deliver the support of a bucket seat with a moveable backrest. The car's structure means that a 97.5th percentile (6ft 4in) driver can fit behind the wheel.

There are three further core specifications: Performance, which has a sporting, functional aesthetic; TechLux, where the focus is on the technical luxury that the name suggests; and Vision, which displays a more avant-garde and adventurous look and feel.

McLaren presents the Artura with a completely new interior featuring control buttons on the steering wheel, a new 8-inch high-definition infotainment touch screen, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto. Two high-definition screens include an interface that is built on all-new software. A stealth mode on the main binnacle hides non-essential content on the screens.

The vehicle is capable of over-the-air updates.

McLaren is equipping the car with a number of advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) including adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, auto high-beam assist, and road sign recognition.

McLaren backs the Artura with a five-year new vehicle warranty, six-year battery warranty, and 10-year body warranty.

The McLaren Artura is priced to start at $225,000. The first deliveries of the car will commence in the third quarter of 2021.

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