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MotorTrend March 2019

Motor Trend is the world's automotive authority. Every issue of Motor Trend informs and entertains with features on the testing of both domestic and import cars, car care, motor sports coverage, sneak peeks at future vehicles, and auto-industry news.

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all or nothing

Five years ago, we put the curvalicious, basted-in-cherry-red backside of Toyota’s FT-1 concept on our cover. We haven’t had a better-selling March issue since—which explains why the highly anticipated production version of the FT-1 is our cover car this month. What is a surprise is how the excitement and anticipation for the return of Toyota’s legendary Supra has slowly given way to subtle shade and full-on Haterade from keyboard warriors on social media, the forum boards, and beyond. As more details of Supra’s co-development with BMW’s Z4 emerged, there were cries from Gardena to Bavaria to Kansai: Surely one shall pollute, or at least dilute, the other? Neither fish nor fowl, JDM nor DTM, what is this unholy union between Germany and Japan? It’s smart, that’s what it is. Toyota has been here…

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2019 ram heavy duty

Modern truck customers want more than a bed, a seat, four wheels, and a trailer hitch. Much more. They’re telling truck makers they want three things, and they want them in perpetuity: more power, more technology, and more comfort. For the first, Ram and longtime partner Cummins went back to the drawing board and cooked up an all-new diesel that shares only its displacement, cylinder count, and layout with the engine you know. The all-new 6.7-liter turbodiesel I-6 is lighter, smoother, and more efficient, and in optional trim it can churn out a simply ridiculous 400 hp and 1,000 lb-ft of torque (standard output is 370 hp and 850 lb-ft). Bolted into a Ram 3500 dually, the monster motor can tow a class-leading 35,100 pounds. Even the narrower Ram 2500 is no…

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2020 lexus rc f track edition

Lexus’ bread and butter has always been soft, comfortable vehicles like the RX crossover and ES sedan. Yet starting with the LFA supercar, RC and LC coupes, and F performance subbrand, it started to look like Lexus was pivoting to become more of a sports-luxury brand. The new 2020 Lexus RC F Track Edition seems like a not-so-subtle hint at where Lexus is going. “The purpose of the RC F Track Edition is to show clearly what the Lexus behavior and taste is,” Lexus executive general manager Koji Sato told us ahead of the car’s official reveal. Developed at the Nürburgring and racetracks all over Japan (including the F subbrand’s namesake Fuji Speedway), the RC F Track Edition is designed for moneyed weekend warriors. Each will be kitted out with a massaged 5.0-liter…

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2020 porsche 911 carrera s

Code-named 992, the eighth-generation Porsche 911—launching in the popular Carrera S and 4S specifications—is longer, wider, and more powerful than the car it replaces. It also debuts a new transmission, new interior, and new driver-assistance tech. It is the most advanced Porsche 911 in history. A flip-up rear spoiler has 45 percent more aerodynamically effective area, continuously variable flaps in the front cooling vents close between 40 mph and 90 mph to reduce drag and fuel consumption, and the door handles retract. The twin-turbo flat-six, code-named 9A2 Evo, shares its crankcase, cylinder heads, oil system, and valvetrain with the 991.2 engine. The compression ratio has been upped, more precise injectors fitted, and the variable valve control system now opens one intake valve farther than the other under partial load to reduce emissions…

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2019 porsche macan s

Porsche has given its best-selling Macan a midlife makeover, a mix of cosmetic tweaks and technology upgrades designed to carry the car through to the arrival of an all-new replacement in 2022 or 2023. Visual changes include a new front fascia with gaping vents on either side of the grille. At the rear, the full-width taillight graphic is now a Porsche family design signature. Big 21-inch wheels are available on the Macan for the first time, and there are four new exterior colors. The 2019 Macans come standard with LED headlights. The base Macan is powered by a 248-hp, 273-lb-ft longitudinally mounted version of VW Group’s versatile 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine fitted with a new direct-injection cylinder head with centrally located injectors. Price is $50,950, a $2,100 bump over the outgoing model. The Macan…

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2019 toyota prius awd-e

One of the more startling signs of the rampaging crossover craze is that annual sales of the Toyota Prius liftback have diminished to a mere 50,000 units. What to do? Its California island of Prius sales desperately needs to colonize the northeast, which is presumably sympathetic to the car’s environmental arguments. But it snows there, so they buy Subarus instead. Consequently, Toyota is gambling on an answer it’s had all along—the all-wheel drive Prius E-Four, which has been on sale in Japan since 2015. It offers about the simplest and lowest-cost AWD solution imaginable: a small electric motor on the rear axle that is tuned purely to help get the otherwise front-drive Prius moving on the crunchy white fluff. Once underway, it de-energizes and freewheels, with parasitic drag minimized because the motor’s…