Mo­tor briefs

NT News - Motoring - - NEWS -

AUDI is now the world’s sec­ond-favourite lux­ury car brand. Through the first quar­ter of 2010 it out­sold Mercedes-Benz for the first time and now has its global sights set on BMW at the top of the lux­ury busi­ness. AN even-faster ver­sion of the Lexus LFA su­per­car is now avail­able, with a track-fo­cused per­for­mance pack­age de­signed for the Nur­bur­gring in Ger­many. Fifty of the 500 LFAs will be fit­ted with the pack, which lifts power to 420kW, cuts gearshift times to 0.15 sec­onds, and adds dif­fer­ent wheels on sportier sus­pen­sion. A NEW model, the Over­land, has just been added to the Grand Chero­kee lineup with the prom­ise of more than $10,000 worth of ex­tra equip­ment. The 5.7-litre Hemi-pow­ered model gets ev­ery­thing from wood-and-leather trim to dual-zone air­con, a sun­roof, sat­nav and Bos­ton Acous­tics sound for $68,990. HY­BRID cars have been cho­sen as the most im­por­tant global en­gi­neer­ing achieve­ment of the past decade in a study com­mis­sioned by En­gi­neers Aus­tralia. More than 40 per cent of the peo­ple in­volved high­lighted the de­vel­op­ment of hy­brids as the study also shows the im­por­tance of motoring and en­vi­ron­men­tal is­sues. THE start­ing price for the Porsche Panam­era has fallen to $193,000 with the in­tro­duc­tion of a V6-pow­ered model with rear-wheel drive. The range is also grow­ing to in­clude a Panam­era 4 from $204,400, us­ing the same 3.6-litre V6 with 200kW and 400Nm of torque. THE elec­tric Mini has joined the cars trum­pet­ing a lap time on the Nur­bur­gring race­course in Ger­many, with a lap in 9 min­utes 51.4 sec­onds for the 20.8km. It’s way be­hind the Nis­san GT-R and Porsche 911 that con­tinue to slug i t out for Nord­schli­effe brag­ging rights, and the Mini only man­aged a top speed of 195km/h.

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