Drive Wire: May 10, 2016
A new Fiat engine, Bolt sales predictions, Hyundai luxury hybrids, a compact camping trailer, and a bike on ice.
Hey guys, it’s Marisa Hunter and this is Drive Wire for Tuesday, May 10.
In keeping up with the saying that good things come in small packages, Fiat-Chrysler is rumored to be coming out with a four cylinder turbo-charged engine good for nearly 300 horsepower. It seems everyone has a two-liter four cylinder in their lineup, but we’d be plenty excited by one with this much go – especially if it found its way into the new Jeep Wrangler, as less weight and more power is an off-roaders dream.
One of the leading auto analysts is estimating that it could sell as many as 80,000 Bolts in its first year. The new GM EV goes on sale in 2017, and Kelley Blue Book senior editor Karl Brauer predicts first-year sales of at least 30,000, with the 80,000 number largely dependent on sales to large fleets. The interesting question here is, can the Bolt keep pace sales wise with the Tesla 3, which already has 400,000 pre-orders? It’s still anyone’s game – Tesla may be more desirable, while Chevy’s Bolt may have a production capacity edge. The future is more electrified any way you look at it.
Hyundai is planning a line of luxury plug-in hybrids. Actually, the Korean automaker is planning to make hybrids across all lines, but the top-flight Genesis models are the only ones they’ve discussed outright. It is still strange to think of Hyundai competing with luxo-boat PHEV’s from Mercedes, Porsche, and Volvo, but we respect the confidence. In the spirit of competition, Hyundai is keeping par with the race for alternative propulsion - in this case, hybrid luxury sedans. We’ll be watching the upcoming Seoul Auto Show with much interest.
Turning to gear, we’ve found your new lightweight camping trailer. The Timberleaf is a teardrop-style compact with all the modern advantages – a queen size bed, plenty of battery power, a deluxe upgradable kitchen, and at twelve hundred pounds, you could tow it with a Miata. You know what? You should tow it with a Miata. Get yours at timberleaftrailers.com.
Today’s ridiculous video is about no-drift and all-grip as Daniil Ivanov shreds his studded motorcycle across Russia’s Baikal Lake. Dropping his knee lower than any Moto GP racer would imagine, Daniil has done a fantastic job closing out our ridiculous winter videos.