We publish a ton of car news stories during the working week, and it can be tough to keep up with everything – which is the rationale behind this weekend list.
In short, here are some key articles from our news desk since Monday of this week summarised, just in case you missed them at the time.
Cupra’s new concept comes from the dark side
The Cupra DarkRebel previews what a sports car could look like from the sporty Spanish brand, and is the “ultimate interpretation” of its vision.
It’s only a virtual concept for now, but Cupra says a physical version is “coming soon”, and you can help shape what that physical concept looks like.
It’s the first Cupra concept to be presented on Metahype, Cupra’s metaverse space, and an immersive experience called the Hyper Configurator allows you to alter aspects of the vehicle such as the colours and graphics and share videos of your creation.
MORE: Cupra DarkRebel is an electric sports car concept
Cupra reveals its first electric SUV
The Volkswagen Group’s sporty Spanish brand Cupra has unveiled the Tavascan, its first all-electric SUV.
It’s set for a 2024 launch, and will come to Australia in 2025 alongside production versions of the Terramar mid-sized SUV and UrbanRebel electric hatch.
Remaining largely faithful to the 2019 concept car, which was also updated in 2022, the Tavascan has a sporty stance thanks to its “shark nose”, raked roofline, and the polished black A-pillar connecting the windscreen to the side glass to mimic a racing driver’s visor.
MORE: Cupra Tavascan: Electric coupe SUV revealed, coming to Australia
There’s a new Mercedes-Benz E-Class
Say “guten tag” to the latest iteration of Mercedes-Benz E-Class, which goes on sale in Europe during the third quarter of 2023. It will likely be available in Australia some time in 2024.
As expected the sixth-generation E-Class copies its shape and many of its design elements with the latest C-Class and S-Class. These include flush-fitting door handles, and tail light clusters that stretch into the boot lid.
The new E-Class does have a few distinguishing items, though. Most notably it has scalloped headlight units that blend into the grille frame, a styling feature borrowed from the all-electric EQE and EQS models. If you’re so inclined, the grille can also be illuminated.
MORE: 2024 Mercedes-Benz E-Class unveiled
What happens when you give the McLaren 720S more power?
What happens when you add more power, more tech, and more modern looks to a McLaren 720S? You get the 750S.
That might be selling the 750S short, though. It might look like a massaged 720S, but McLaren says 30 per cent of the components in its new supercar are fresh or changed.
It’s coming to Australia priced from $585,800 before on-roads for the coupe, or $654,600 for the Spider.
MORE: McLaren 750S picks up more power, Artura technology
Ford Australia is shrinking two departments
Ford Australia will make 250 salaried employees in its vehicle development and design departments redundant in the coming months.
Staff told CarExpert some engineering and design employees have been offered the option to apply for a voluntary redundancy package – although if fewer than 250 people apply, it’s possible fewer than 250 will be laid off.
A spokesperson for Ford confirmed the Blue Oval will offer a “voluntary separation program for approximately 250 of our 1400 salaried product development and design employees”, as it shrinks some teams following the launch of the latest Ranger ute and Everest four-wheel drive.
MORE: Ford Australia confirms engineering and design redundancies
My, my, my, how the turntables… turn
The plot line is bit of Days of Our Lives mixed with Succession via Bollywood, but the company once known as SsangYong is in the box seat to rescue from receivership Edison Motors, the bus manufacturer that tried to buy it last year.
According to the Yonhap News Agency, KG Mobility – as SsangYong is now known – is the preferred bidder to purchase Edison Motors and bring it out of receivership, effectively flipping the script from a few years ago.
When the COVID-19 pandemic struck in March 2020, SsangYong’s majority shareholder Mahindra decided the Korean automaker needed to pay its own way.
MORE: SsangYong turns the tables, wants to rescue former suitor
Who doesn’t love a bit of sibling rivalry?
The Volkswagen Amarok is the latest vehicle to be awarded a five-star safety rating from ANCAP against the 2020-2022 testing protocols, with it narrowly scoring better than its Ford Ranger twin under the skin in one particular area.
This result was drawn from testing of the closely related Ford Ranger, with additional frontal offset and side impact tests conducted on the Amarok by Euro NCAP, which has harmonised testing protocols with ANCAP.
The Amarok scored 86 per cent for adult occupant protection, 93 per cent for child occupant protection, 74 per cent for vulnerable road user protection, and 83 per cent for safety assist.
MORE: Volkswagen Amarok ANCAP safety rating outshines Ranger
This recall involves a very, very special Porsche
Porsche has recalled 11 examples of the Carrera GT supercar in Australia, to fix a problem with the chassis control arm mounts.
According to the recall notice, “the chassis control arm mounts may not meet specifications and could corrode over the life of the vehicle. If the chassis control arm mounts corrode or crack, this could cause a reduction of vehicle control”.
“A reduction in vehicle control could increase the risk of an accident causing injury or death to the vehicle occupants, other road users and bystanders.”
MORE: Porsche Carrera GT recall: Australian owners told not to drive their cars
Skoda details its EV plans
The Skoda Enyaq and Enyaq Coupe will be refreshed and joined by a range of new electric vehicles (EVs), including a wagon and a replacement for the current Karoq.
The Czech brand has released a roadmap for the expansion of its EVs. It aims to have six EVs by 2026 that “will cover all vehicle segments that are relevant to our customers”.
It also says it will have invested a total of 5.6 billion euros (A$9.26bn) in EVs by 2027.
MORE: Skoda details its electric car onslaught
Elon Musk may have to testify under oath about Autopilot
In another headache for Tesla, its CEO Elon Musk has been ordered by a California judge to testify under oath about statements he made regarding Autopilot.
Reuters reports Tesla had opposed the request in court filings, claiming Musk couldn’t recall details about statements he was claimed to have made.
In addition, the company cited an unusual reason for its CEO to not be ordered to testify.
MORE: Musk ordered to testify in Autopilot suit despite deepfake claim
Volvo C40 and XC40 Recharge updates priced for Australia
Volvo’s updated C40 and XC40 Recharge Pure Electric SUVs have been priced for Australia, and are arriving sooner than expected.
The brand has confirmed they’re now due here in the third quarter of 2023 – not the fourth, as had previously been announced – and are available to order now.
Single-motor versions of the XC40 and C40 Recharge Pure Electric are priced at $76,990 and $78,990 before on-road costs, respectively, representing price increases of $3000.
The dual-motor Twin version of the XC40 is priced at $85,990 before on-roads, while the C40 Recharge Pure Electric Twin is priced at $87,990 before on-roads. Both are up by $4500.
MORE: Volvo C40 and XC40 Recharge: Updated electric SUVs priced
New GLC range launching with one model at first
Mercedes-Benz Australia has detailed the local pricing and standard features for its critical new-generation GLC SUV ahead of its on-sale date in June.
As previously detailed, the new Mercedes-Benz GLC will only be available with one variant at launch locally. The GLC 300 4Matic is priced from $104,900 before on-road costs, which is $12,600 more than the outgoing model.
The German carmaker’s local division has said coupe and AMG GLC models will follow at a later date. Although the latter hasn’t been officially revealed yet, a number of spied prototypes have been captured over the last 12 months.