SUV

Top Gayer is Going Stateside!

Cheap motels, key lime pie and the old open road!  Yes Top Gayer is going stateside on an all American road trip, east coast to west – Florida to California!

Setting off on the 18th June, Rich and Marcus are hitting the road covering 3,000 miles in just a few days.  Here we will be posting video diaries, reports on the places we visit and updates on our journey from east to west.

No specific stops or planned visits just driving until we drop.  Our weapon of choice…?  Mazda’s luxury SUV, the CX-9.  Bigger than the CX-7 we get here in the UK, the CX-9 seats 7 people in Mazda's iconic sporting style and luxury.

So we've raised the US flag in celebration, and for the next few weeks feel free to watch our progress in your best american attire. 

Our Route will hopefully look something like this...

 

 But we all know how the best laid plans don't always run as smoothly as we'd like.  Regardless of this however, we hope you will all enjoy it and we will try our best to not burst out into song 'a-la-Priscilla'. (we can't guarantee this, there will probably be a few classic hits we just wont hold back on).

 

If you fancy joining us along the road just log in and subscribe to get updates on what we’re up to.  Alternatively follow @TopGayer on twitter or 'Like' our Facebook page.

 

 

Audi Announce Q3 Pricing Ready for Launch

Order books for Audi's latest 'Q', the Q3, are set to open June this year with deliveries just in time for the winter weather from November.  So what could make the small compact SUV city crossover more attractive...?

A very attractive price of £24,560, generously equipped across the range.

 

So most importantly for any Audi is the power keg under the bonnet, ranging from 140PS to 211PS the Q3 features Audi's 2.0l TFSI and TDI engines - including start-stop technology and energy recuperation in all.

Moving onto specification and as mentioned earlier the Q3 is packed with standard equipment, from Audi's music interface to a retractable 6" display the Q3 is full of tech.  Bluetooth preparation and Voice dialogue also feature across the 8 speaker sound system, while headlights, windscreen wipers and Dual zone climate control are all automated for your comfort.

Exterior highlights include aluminium roof rails and trim surrounding the windows, with two tone contrasting metallic finishes and front fog lights.  This theme is carried into the cabin with aluminium door sills and a stainless steel luggage sill and monochromatic touches within the drivers information display and inlays.

The S-line of course gets upgraded features, including 18" alloys and Xenon headlights with LED runners and rear tail lights.  Throw in some sports seats and lower the sports suspension 20mm and the Q3 will no doubt look mean, but not as mean as an inevitable RS, convertible and sportback version.

Mazda Confirms a CX-5 small SUV

Mazda has today confirmed that a newer, smaller SUV will be made, named the 'CX-5'.  After the Minagi was received so well, it's no surprise that the Zoom-Zoom brand should enter the smaller SUV market.

The CX-5 will join the CX-7 in the SUV line-up for the global market, debuting at Frankfurt in September of this year.

 

Peugeot get SxC at Shanghai

Shanghai Motorshow sees Peugeot announce their new concept the SxC, and it seems they aren't wrong in naming the new crossover, as it certainly turns heads.

The SxC features design cues such as a floating grille, a piercing gaze and proudly placed atop the grooved bonnet is the new Peugeot lion, poised and ready for a chase down the freeway.  The rear is sculpted and carries the high waistline that is nicely highlighted by the tail lights in their 'boomerang' look.  Sat on some 22" alloys, the SxC is dominant and wont go unnoticed.

The roof-rails tail off at the rear, in an original design that promotes the cars fluid design and kinetic energy - a subtle hint that could suggest how fierce this lion really can be.

Inside hosts the usual concept components - lots of blue strip lighting and angles that never normally make it to the production stage.  What is most interesting however is that this beast of a crossover is only a four seater, which immediately suggests that it's the French manufacturers answer to the latest trend in SUV coupés.  Suicide doors only serve to back this theory up too, however another popular concept element that is rarely seen to make production.

Finally the SxC features the HYbrid4 technology that Peugeot have championed, introducing batteries into a diesel engine.

Audi's Worst Kept Secret - The Q3

Audi has finally released the information on the badly kept secret that is the Q3.  A compact SUV making it's debut at Shanghai Motorshow, the Q3 is said to look just at home amongst the city walls as it would scaling hills and fields.

Increased ground clearance and Quattro all wheel drive systems make the third model to be introduced into the 'Q' family of cars carry the same luxury and experience of driving an Audi SUV - just in a smaller shell.

Engines will all include start-stop technology offering the choice of two 2.0l petrol engines and a 2.0l TDI all reaching impressive mpg, however not as impressive as the efficiency focused 2.0l TDI reaching a high 54mpg.

Priced from around £25k this Audi Q-car is a nice introduction to becoming an Audi SUV owner and will be sure to offer everything Audi include throughout their range.

Ford to Unveil Exciting New Concepts at Geneva

Ford often utilise Paris Motorshow to show off new cars and announce to the journalists their next move in motoring.

Geneva this March is no different for the American giants, showing off not only their latest in electric tech, but we're told that at 2.30pm on March 1st, the big boss at Ford Europe will unveil a 'groundbreaking all-new vehicle' during their conference.

If you can't wait to see it, why not busy yourself with this - the rather interesting concept called the 'Vertrek'. 

The Vertrek represents a new direction in design for the next-generation of Kuga, and sees Fords vision for a sleeker more stylish SUV.  The fact it only has four seats might suggest it to be a contender for the latest trend of SUV coupés, but we can only speculate, as it is still just a concept.

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Other models featured within Fords realm at Geneva are, the all-new Focus Electric (a first in electric passenger cars for the brand), a 'C-Max Energi' plug-in Hybrid and the rugged new Ranger due to go on sale late in 2011.

KA gets a little bling added to the booty and interior space, adding to the already wicked 'individual' range in April - presenting the 'KA metal'

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Finally, the Mondeo ECOnetic suppresses it's CO2 down to 114g/km, plus ford have announced some 'additional large car powertrain enhancements', and a shiny new 1.6 diesel engine will be entered into the Mondeo, S-MAX and Galaxy ranges. 

They certainly have been busy, and to top it all off, today they delivered the first new-shape Focus' to their UK dealers.  Where have they found the time!?

Mazda's Newest Design Theme Showcased Through Minagi

 

 

Mazda have always been known for their design themes, and creating a concept to reflect an all encapsulating showcase of design and technological innovation. This year is no different either, with Mazda presenting the ‘Minagi’ compact crossover SUV concept at Geneva motorshow in March.


Mazda’s KODO design theme represents a very powerful styling to the brand, including sharp swooping lines, reminiscent of Japanese calligraphy. The Minagi concept evokes a very smooth body to compliment those blade-like lines, achieving a vibrant stance, that commands recognition.

However, this baby CX-7 concept does not just represent the brand’s design focus, but also demonstrates Mazda’s new ‘SKYACTIV’ technology. Not much is said about what that actually means, but mentions of the environment, transmission and engine elements suggest that it’s likely to be either, an ‘eco’ derivative range or a change in materials used for manufacturing – like Audi did with their Aluminium Space Frame (ASF).

Either way, it’s design sketches look great, and to see Mazda becoming more involved into markets they haven’t yet ventured toward, will be interesting. If the Minagi is their offering? And it looks like this? It should do well.