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topCar July 2015

Topcar provides unmissable coverage of the wide world of cars in a monthly magazine loaded with beautiful images, in-depth analysis and unbiased opinion by a passionate team of experts.

Country:
South Africa
Language:
English
Publisher:
Media 24 Ltd
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R35,50

IN THIS ISSUE

access_time1 min.
new beginnings

AS THE SEASONS change, so too does your copy of TopCar – you’ll notice that your favourite mag has implemented a number of changes aimed at making your journey through the book ever easier. We’re proud of the new, easy-to-read specification boxes, which we hope are as much fun as they are informative. Because fun is important, even when you’re head-down trying to decide whether your biggest investment this side of a house is going to be a good idea or a lemon. Let us know what you think. Speaking of fun, we’ve had a lot of it this month, trekking from Namibia to Switzerland via Spain to bring you a bunch of first drives. But almost more important than the still camouflaged and very sideways 7 Series (page50), Audi’s magnificent…

access_time6 min.
how apple’s icar is changing the car world

BEHIND CLOSED DOORS an Apple development team is working on a top secret project that has caused a car industry shockwave. Their mission? To explore the feasibility of Apple launching an iCar, potentially shaking up an entrenched market in just the same way as the iPod and iPhone transformed digital music players and smartphones. Only a small circle of insiders know what’s happening inside the Silicon Valley skunkworks, one that’s physically separate from Apple’s Cupertino campus, reported the Financial Times as it broke the story. But talking to industry watchers and car bosses, we have pieced together the most detailed dossier yet. Having banked $19.1 billion from its operations in the last quarter alone, Apple has the war chest to attack the car industry. Wall Street analysts Sanford Bernstein estimate car industry…

access_time1 min.
google’s plan: a real-life johnny cab

Like Apple, Google is working on a self-driving car – but in the public eye. It kicked off the project in 2008, and its adapted Toyota hybrids have evolved into a bubble car with the design integrity of a 1970s Dr Whoprop. The intent is deadly serious however: to create a fleet of electric taxis, that can be hailed via smartphone and use radar, cameras and Google Maps to get around. The only controls are start and emergency stop buttons. Perfect to keep the elderly mobile, for example. Aside from changing the (urban) world, Google will be hungry to monetise the data generated from four-wheeled pod users.…

access_time2 min.
wörthersee wonders

THE WÖRTHERSEE TUNING festival is widely regarded as the Woodstock of car gatherings for ardent VW nutters. The last few years has also seen a rise in OEM involvment with Audi and Volkswagen both using this event to showcase some of its concepts. This year saw the unveling of the TT Clubsport and Golf GTE Sport concept cars. The GTE Sport is a radical futuristic vision for hot hatches of the future; and will sit alongside the production-bound GTI Clubsport, a 195kW special due for the Golf GTI’s 40th in 2016. The GTE Sport has what VW calls an ‘electric propshaft,’ as the hybrid system powers the rear axle. Performance is predictably rapid: 0-100kph takes 4.3secs and top speed is claimed at 280kph. It’s not just about performance though – it…

access_time2 min.
we hear

NEW BROOMS are sweeping at BMW, in the form of fresh CEO HARALD KRÜGER and r&d chief KLAUS FRÖHLICH. They’ve shelved the M8 supercar proposal, large 9 SERIES COUPE and baby Z2 ROADSTER, and various MINI CONCEPTS. However, the I5, the third car in the I PROJECT, is on track for 2019. It’s a FOUR-DOOR, FOUR-SEAT saloon, which will mix extensive use of CARBONFIBRE, the company’s new rear-drive CLAR architecture and a choice of LOW-CARBON drivetrains. Packaging is supposed to be impressive, cramming MORE SPACE than a 3 Series into the footprint of an i8 (above), thanks to a tiny front overhang and long wheelbase. Like the I3, there’s an ELECTRIC MOTOR at the back driving the rear wheels, with 168kW. If you go PURE ELECTRIC, it’s supplemented by a 100kW unit…

access_time1 min.
when car designers go off piste

Mazda sofa Inspired by the stance of the CX-3 crossover. Here’s hoping it’s more comfortable than it looks. The sofa, too. Ford sailboat All Ford’s Milan designs are influenced by the new GT supercar – starting with this carbonfibre racing sailboat. Where’s the twin-turbo Ecoboost V6? Oh. Ford electric guitar Made from aluminium and wood, and painted Liquid Blue like the GT show car. Neither paint nor guitar are for sale. Mazda bicycle Intended as an exercise in minimalism, the frame is hand-hammered from a single sheet of steel! Seat and stitching are inspired by new MX-5 interior. Ford Foosball! It’s all about direct interaction and ‘the experience’, according to Ford interior designer and foosball aficionado Rafael Rego. Ergo, clear walls and grass pitch.…

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