Say "goodbye" to the BMW 3 Series Coupe, and welcome the new 2014 BMW 4 Series ($TBA). Like a cross between a sportier 3 Series and a smaller 6 Series, the 4 Series comes (in its most aggressive variation, the 435i) with a 306 hp twin-turbo six-cylinder engine and six-speed manual gearbox. Also available in four-cylinder diesel and gas variations with an optional eight-speed automatic. A lower stance, larger width and wheelbase, and improved aerodynamics further differentiate this quick two-door from its cousin, the 3 Series.
Long-known for gracefully combining luxury with performance, BMWs rarely disappoint, and the BMW Pinifarina Gran Lusso Coupe ($TBA) certainly doesn't. The Germans have joined forces with luxury Italian designers Pininfarina to make a one-off creation boasting exclusivity and roadworthiness. The exterior is distinctly BMW, with a set-back cockpit and stretched hood covering a massive V-12 (and of course the signature kidney-shaped grill). But the interior screams Italian opulence — fine Italian leather upholstery, plaid Italian wool headliner, and accents made of kauri wood aged 48,000 years. Carmakers could learn a thing or two from this impressive partnership.
Coming up its 40th anniversary, VW is getting ready to take the wraps off the seventh generation of its speedy hatchback. The 2014 Volkswagen GTI (€28,000; roughly $36,000) is the first GTI to arrive with two power options: a 220 hp 2.0L TSI engine standard, which is cranked up to 230hp with the optional performance pack. Even with the power improvements, the new hatch offers improved fuel economy of up to 39 mpg with the six-speed manual and 36.8 with the six-speed, dual-clutch DSG transmission. Other features include sports seats with the "Clark" tartan pattern, red ambient lighting, a GTI shifter knob and instrument cluster, stainless-steel pedals, Climatronic climate control, a touchscreen infotainment system, and heated front seats. Arriving in Germany in May; look for it stateside sometime after that.
Plenty of cars receive a mid-cycle facelift — but the 2014 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Coupe ($TBA) has more up its sleeve than just a new look. Accompanying the new, sportier front end — which holds new single-lens LED headlamps and large air intakes — redesigned rear fenders, and all new interior is a host of new safety features, dubbed "intelligent drive". Included in this new package is Collision Prevention Assist, a radar-based collision warning system with adaptive brake assist systems, Attention Assist, which can detect when you're getting drowsy, Distronic Plus with Steering Assist which helps to keep the car in its lane and can track multiple lanes of traffic, and a bunch of other futuristic systems that come just short of letting the car drive itself. Available in hardtop or Cabriolet versions, with engines ranging from 300 to 400 hp.
No, it's not a totally new car — you can think of the BMW Concept 4 Series Coupe ($TBA) as an extension of the 3 series, although it has one less door. Sometimes. Effectively the replacement for the 3-series coupe, the new 4 series concept is longer, wider, and lower, while retaining much of its younger (?) siblings blood. Features include LED headlights, a huge front air intake, an "Air Breather" behind the front wheels, and, of course, an interior that's probably slightly more progressive than what we'll see in the production version. Slated to arrive at a dealer near you whenever it makes its way out of the "concept" stage.
We're not the only ones to be surprised with a Hot Wheels toy instead of a real car over the holidays, but now it's time to turn the tables with the Camaro Hot Wheels Edition ($TBA). The very first full-size, production Hot Wheels car to ever be offered for sale, this limited edition ride is available in V6-powered LT and V8-powered SS trims, offering between 323 and 426 horsepower. Inside, the black leather-trimmed interior is accented with red and black seat stitching and complimented by the MyLink infotainment system, while the Kinetic Blue exterior features a ZL1 rear spoiler and front upper grille, a ground effects package, black 21-inch wheels with red outline stripes, a two-tone matte hood graphic, rear taillight blackout graphic, fender flame graphics, and Hot Wheels logos all around. Arriving in the first quarter of 2013.
Lusting after an M5 but simply don't want or need those extra two doors? Say hello to the 2013 BMW M6 Coupe ($TBA). This third-generation supercar-turned-daily driver is powered by a high-revving 4.4L V8 with M TwinPower Turbo Technology, which produces 560 hp and a 0-62 mph time of 4.2 seconds, a 7-speed M Double Clutch Transmission, an M specific chassis that's more rigid and robust than that of the standard 6-series, optional M Carbon-Ceramic brakes, standard 19-inch light-alloy wheels, available Adaptive LED headlights, a carbon fiber composite roof, a head-up display, and an agressive body that's sure to make sweaty the palms of anyone fortunate enough to spot one in their rearview mirror.
Classic looks meet modern guts in the HB Coupe ($TBA). This custom — but fully road-ready — ride offers a full carbon monocoque and a 3.0L inline six good for 306 hp. It sends that power to the rear wheels via a six-speed manual or seven-speed dual clutch transmission, making for a 0-62 time of 4.3 seconds and an estimated top speed of 155. Still in the development stage, it has yet to receive a price — but something tells us the attention it will draw will be worth every penny.
The new car caravan continues on with the 2013 Hyundai Veloster Turbo ($TBA). Powered by a 201 hp, 1.6L four cylinder, the Turbo also packs 18-inch alloy wheels, LED tail lamps, dual exhaust outlets surrounded by a new rear fascia, available factory matte gray paint (!), your choice of a six-speed automatic or manual transmission, LED headlight accents, leather seats, a 7-inch touchscreen display, a 450-watt Dimension Premium Audio system, and an aggressive front end that screams "get out of my way".
MINI's latest redesign meets the open air with the MINI Roadster ($TBA). Arriving in Cooper, Cooper SD, Cooper S, and John Cooper Works models, this powerful pit bull-esque drop-top features power ranging from 122 hp in the standard model to 211 in the JCW, Dynamic Stability Control, a manually operated soft-top roof for that old-timey feel, an optional Harman Kardon hi-fi audio system, and the MINI Connected system with web radio, Google services, an RSS reader, and integration with Facebook and Twitter.
Looking for a compact all-wheel-drive ride? The Audi A1 Quattro ($TBA) should fit the bill nicely, assuming you can get your hands one — they're limited to just 333 units. Features include a 2.0 TFSI engine pumping out 256 hp and a six-speed gearbox that team up to provide 0-62 mph times in the 5.7 second range, and fuel economy of 28 mpg. A metallic white paint job, aggressive looks, and, of course, Quattro all-wheel-drive round out the ride. Sadly, it's Europe-only for now.
One of the auto industry's true icons just got an update. The 2013 Mercedes-Benz SL ($TBA) is all-new, shaving 300 pounds in the process, while adding a more powerful, economical V8 engine producing 429 hp and a 0-60 time of 4.5 seconds, a new front fascia with upright nose, the Magic Vision Control intelligent and highly efficient wipe/wash system, and the new FrontBass system, which integrates the sound system into the body itself. Arriving just in time for 2012's drop-top season.