During the run of a week, we run into numerous stories that require a grain of salt to become palatable. Other stories require a metric ton of sodium chloride just to get past the headline.
We’re here to save you from automotive hypertension. This is the Salt Truck.
Mini Superleggera Vision? Not even once.
Remember the Mini Superleggera Vision concept from the 2014 Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este? It was a stunning piece of metal put together by Touring Superleggera, the same company that built the equally gorgeous (or maybe even more so) Alfa Romeo Disco Volante Touring concept.
It seems the Mini concept caused enough of a stir that people were going into dealers in the UK attempting to put in an order, even though the concept was never meant to spawn a production model. As board member Peter Schwarzenbauer explained to Autocar, it was built as a study to see “how the public would react to a Mini stretched in a way that it had never been stretched before.”
Yeah, it is certainly gorgeous, but it’s also a stretch to still call it a Mini.
And, for that reason, they should never build it and they probably never will, no matter how many hand-raisers walk into dealerships. After culling the Coupe and Roadster from the Mini lineup in an effort to put more focus on the brand’s core models, the last thing Mini will want is to add a new model to the range.
Honda Civic Type-R? Maybe.
When rumours spread of a European-only model destined for our shores, there’s two ways they hit the press. The first is by way of one of the buff books here in North America, or another local outlet, throwing darts to see what’ll stick (*cough* RX-7 *cough*). The other usually comes from an outlet overseas that may actually have contacts a little closer to the speculated model; sources that aren’t as tight-lipped as our own public relations folk.
While there have been calls for me to drive an entire fleet of salt trucks toward the latest Honda Civic Type-R rumour, I think there might be some truth to it.
Honda rushed out an emergency facelift on the Honda Civic Coupe for 2014 after doing the same for the sedan in 2013. To see a new Civic debut this coming year for the 2016 model year would be one year short of Honda’s typical five-year life cycle. Considering the mess that is the current Civic, rushing out a brand new model one year early makes a hell of a lot of sense.
This matches up with timing of the rumour as well.
It’s all quite interesting and I’m willing to make a small wager – 50 cents, was it? – with one particular forum member to see who comes out on top.
There’s another part of the rumour that’s total and utter hogwash: the CR-Z will get the same motor. I’d be more willing to bet the CR-Z won’t see a second generation before Honda bothers putting anymore money into it.
Saab – third time isn’t a charm.
It seems Saab may have its third owner since General Motors spun off the brand during bankruptcy. According to Automotive News, Indian concern Mahindra & Mahindra is interested in taking on the Swedish automaker.
According to the Automotive News, “Mahindra wants to acquire the remnants of Saab to accelerate its expansion into Western markets and into premium and electric cars.”
I’m not sure how Mahindra & Mahindra could leverage Saab to do such an expansion. The Swedish automaker only owns one plant now in Trollhättan and there’s no longer a dealer network for the brand either.
There’s room for exactly one Swedish automaker in the world and it isn’t Saab. While the “born from jets” brand built some of the best-engineered and most Scandinavian cars one can imagine, today’s Saab is nothing but a hollow shell of its former self.
Sorry, Trollhättan. It’s time to move on.