Luxury car news: BMW, Audi, Mercedes and more are thinking of you

From BMW’s Z4 to Mercedes’ GT43 to Audi’s E-Tron, here’s the latest luxury cars are offering for you in India.

Have some extra cash lying around to splurge? Here's the latest in pace, power and performance

Ferrari-Monza-SP1

FERRARI SURPRISED everyone by unveiling two limited-edition open-top supercars that are styled to look like the Italian brand’s famed race cars from the '50s. Called the Monza SP1 and SP2, special editions are a part of Ferrari’s newly-launched Icona line that will spawn more limited editions inspired by Classic Ferraris. The design of the pair is said to reference the ‘Barchetta’ body style, which translates to “little boat” in Italian. The Monza SP1 is a single seat, humped back supercar with no room for a passenger. The SP2, on the other hand, is nearly identical, except for the second seat for the passenger.

In terms of styling, the aesthetics of special editions have been kept clean and minimalistic. The two super cars don’t even have physical windscreens; instead, they use something called “Virtual Wind Shield.”

It’s an aerodynamic carbon fibre funnel in front of the driver that sucks air down and then shoots it up in a 90-degree angle, creating an invisible shield. Both the special editions are based on the Ferrari 812 Superfast and powered by company’s 800 hp 6.5-litre V12 engine. Thanks to the extensive use of carbon fibre and other light weight materials along with the lack of roof, both the cars are extremely light weight. Ferrari claims the pair can do zero to 100 kmph in under three seconds and reach a top speed of 186 kmph.

If you want to get hold of one of these, hurry: Only 500 of these special editions will be made and are only available to Ferrari’s most loyal customers.

BMW Z4: BIGGER... BOLDER

2019-BMW-Z4

BMW UNVEILED the all-new Z4 roadster recently at the 2018 Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance. It is the third generation model of the open-top sports car, built in partnership with Toyota. Unlike its predecessor which had a folding hard-top, the new Z4 has a fabric soft-top to keep the roadster as lightweight as possible. In terms of design, the 2019 BMW Z4 looks completely different from the outgoing model. The slim headlights have been replaced by bigger, bolder-looking headlamps which flank a completely redesigned version of the BMW’s signature kidney grilles. The interior of the 2019 Z4 features a new driver-centric dashboard with styling and tech borrowed from BMW’s newly updated sedans. The new Z4 will come equipped with all the latest iDrive infotainment features, dual displays and the new BMW Driving Assistant Professional. Two versions of the new Z4 will be launched initially: M40i with a turbocharged 3-litre inline-six engine producing 382 horsepower, and a less powerful 30i model with BMW's latest turbocharged 2.0-litre inline-four, which makes 255 horsepower.

0-100 KMPH IN 4.5 SECONDS, FOR `2.19 CR

2018-Mercedes-AMG-G63

UNVEILED AT the Geneva Motor Show earlier this year, the latest generation of Mercedes-AMG G63 has finally arrived in India with a price tag of Rs 2.19 crore (ex-showroom). It might look exactly the same as the previous model, it is lighter, bigger and equipped with more high-tech gadgetry. The design changes are restricted to the new LED headlamps and grille, along with subtle changes to the body lines. The new G63 is 53 mm longer, 121 mm wider and 65 kg lighter than the previous model, which has created more room inside the cabin. The interior gets twin 12-inch displays, a 15-speaker 590- watt Burmester sound system and other amenities you’ll expect from a top-end Mercedes. The 5.5-litre V8 engine has been replaced with the 4.0-litre bi-turbo V8, which produces 578 bhp and a peak torque of 850 Nm. The power is enough to rocket the big luxury SUV to 100 kmph from a stand still in just 4.5 seconds.

MERCEDES UNVEILS GT 43 FOUR-DOOR COUPE

Mercedes-AMG-GT-43-Four-Door-Coupe

MERCEDES REVEALED the AMG GT 4-Door Coupe earlier this year, which packs the performance of the German automaker’s two-door AMG GT sports car in a practical sedan body. The brand expanded its range by adding GT43, a new entry-level model which sits below the GT 53, GT 63, and GT 63 S. The GT 43 is powered by the same turbocharged inline-six 3.0-litre engine found in the GT 53, but it has been tuned to produce less power. It gets 367 hp and 369 pound-feet of torque, which is 68 hp and 15 lb-ft less than the GT 53, respectively. It also gets the same mild hybrid system as the GT 53, which Mercedes calls the EQ Boost. The system adds an extra 21 hp and 184 lb-ft during high-load situations, and also serves as the starter motor for the engine and can recover energy under braking.

AUDI TAKES WRAP OFF ITS E-TRON PROTOTYPE

2019-Audi-E-Tron

AFTER MONTHS of teasing, the prototype wrapped in flashy camouflage, Audi finally revealed its first pure-electric SUV last month. Called the E-Tron, the luxury electric SUV looks similar to the recently unveiled Audi Q8, along with styling cues borrowed from the smaller-sized Q3. Audi made sure that the aesthetics of the E-Tron carries the brand’s instantly recognisable design DNA, while giving enough design features to distinguish it from the rest of the cars in Audi’s portfolio. The nearly solid front grille painted in silver, futuristic-looking wheels and the lack of tailpipes, all point towards the SUV’s electric powertrain.

The interior, on the other hand, looks almost identical to those found in the Q8, A8 and A7. The cabin seats five people, unlike the Audi Q7 which has a third row of seating. When launched, the E-Tron will only be available with a 95-kWh battery pack which can be charged to 80 per cent of its range in 30 minutes using 150-kW DC fast charging.

The final EPA-rated range hasn't been released yet, but the WLTP rating for range is about 400 km. The E-Tron has two electric motors for propulsion, one large one for the rear, and a small one for the front wheels.

The combined output of the two motors is 265 kW, or 365 hp, which is enough to propel the electric SUV from zero to 100 kmph in 6.2 seconds.

There is also a Boost mode which temporarily increases the power to 300 kW, or 410 bhp, that cuts down the 0-100 kmph time by half a second

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