Tag: Automobile Magazine Design of the Year
“There’s a good reason I keep a 1:18-scale model of the 1993 Porsche Boxster concept car sitting on a teak cabinet in my studio,” writes Automobile Magazine’s Robert Cumberford, “it’s gorgeous, the first Porsche to bring the spirit of early Porsche 550 racing cars to the road.”
Cumberford acknowledges that the first- and second-generation mid-engine Boxster’s design never appealed much to his sense of style; however, twenty years after the original Boxster concept, the all-new 2013 Boxster’s style managed to “wow” Cumberford and the rest of the Automobile Magazine staff enough to give magazine’s “2013 Design of the Year” award to the two-seat Porsche roadster.
Available with a 2.7-liter 265-horsepower flat-six engine, the standard Boxster will take the roadster to 60 mph from rest in just under six seconds. Moving up to the Boxster S puts a 315-horsepower 3.4-liter flat-six engine behind the driver’s head. Equipped so, the car’s 0-60 time is shaved to a tick under five seconds.
Available with either Porsche’s responsive six-speed manual transmission or the quick-shifting PDK semi-automatic gearbox, Automobile Magazine’s “2013 Design of the Year” is arguably more fun to drive than it is to look at.
If Cumberford doesn’t purchase a 1:18-scale model of the 2013 Boxster to sit next to his 1993 model, we’ll understand. After all, a car of the Boxster’s caliber can only truly be appreciated as a full-size model sitting in your home’s garage.
By Zack McDonald from HybridCars.com
The Fisker Karma has faced some tough press lately, including a brief, misinformed outrage surrounding the fact that the car will be manufactured in Finland despite the Fisker’s receipt of a $529 million loan guarantee from the Department of Energy. As those who have followed the company over the years know, Fisker intended to build the Karma in Finland long before it received any federal loan guarantees, and still plans to manufacture its next vehicle at a factory in Delaware.
Recently though, the headlines have begun to tilt in the Karma’s favor. On Wednesday, it was announced that Automobile magazine had named the car “Design of the Year” for 2012, calling it “a beautiful and highly dramatic automobile, unlike anything else on the road today and yet very much like dozens of the most beloved sports cars of the past.”
The accolade underscores an important point about the Karma that tends to get lost in a flood of often politically-tinged reactions: the Karma is a $96,000 luxury sports sedan and as such, it deserves to be evaluated on different terms from the Chevy Volt or Toyota Prius Plug-in. Emissions-conscious purchasers of luxury performance vehicles haven’t traditionally had many offerings to choose from. The Karma gives this relatively untested market a new option, and according to Automobile magazine-and nearly everyone else who’s driven and reviewed the vehicle-it’s a pretty impressive one at that.
Over in Europe, the Karma got some more good news last week from independent fuel efficiency tests carried out by the German regulatory body Technischer Überwachungs Verein (TÜV). The results of those tests prove that the Fisker Karma is one of the most capable—at least among plug-in hybrid vehicles—electric-only-mode performers in the world. The TÜV’s thorough “real-world urban” tests show that the plug-in returned an impressive 51.6-mile range in electric-only mode. This figure beats the Karma’s official EPA rating by a substantial 19.6 miles.
Of the results, Henrik Fisker, chief executive officer of Fisker Automotive, stated, “We are delighted that the TÜV has confirmed that most owners will achieve a 50-mile range running purely on electric during their daily commute.”
The 2012 Fisker Karma is currently on sale in the US, though production volume is extremely limited and all Karmas to be sold in 2011 have already been spoken for. Come next year, Fisker aims to ramp up production and sell approximately 15,000 Karmas in the US and Europe.