More power for Porsche Macan, Tom Cruise in top gear, “Right to Repair” fight could favor DIYers
Welcome to The Manifold, our fresh daily digest of news and what’s happening in the car world.
2022 Porsche Macan packs more poke
Intake: A mid-life update for the Porsche Macan is almost all under the hood. Visual changes for 2022 are limited to a subtly restyled front and rear end, and an increase in wheel size (19-inchers for the Macan, 20s for the S, and 21s for the GTS) but it’s what you can’t see from the outside that makes all the difference. The entry-level Macan employs a two-liter four-cylinder turbo motor with 261 hp (increased from 248 hp) to serve up a 0–62 mph sprint of 6.2 seconds and a top speed of 144 mph. Next up is the Macan S, with a 2.9-liter, twin-turbo V-6 that’s good for 375 hp (up almost 30 hp on the outgoing model). This cuts the 0–62 mph time to 4.6 seconds and raises the top end to 161 mph. At the top of the tree is the Macan GTS with a further fettled version of that V-6 producing 434 hp, nearly 60 hp more than before. The GTS will power to 62 mph from rest in 4.3 seconds and go on to almost 170 mph. All versions drive four wheels via a seven-speed, dual-clutch PDK. The GTS now gets sport air suspension as standard, rides 0.39 inches lower than before, and is 10 percent more rigid at the front and 15 percent stiffer at the rear. Inside the biggest change is a 10.9-inch HD touch display, which reduces the number of physical buttons, and a shorter gear selector. U.S. deliveries are set to begin in early 2022; prices start at $54,900 and rise to $79,900 for the GTS—before options.
Exhaust: The Macan has proved hugely popular, with more than 600,000 cars sold since it was first introduced in 2014. With 80 percent of its buyers new to the Porsche brand, this SUV has opened up a whole new audience. Adding more power to the formula certainly won’t hurt.
Watch Tom Cruise in a Formula 1 dogfight with David Coulthard and Mark Webber
Intake: Tom Cruise is a major motorsports fan and quite the helmsman himself. In the run up to last weekend’s British Grand Prix, where he was a guest of Lewis Hamilton, Cruise took to the Silverstone circuit with former Formula 1 drivers David Coulthard and Mark Webber in a promotion for the U.K.’s Channel 4 coverage. The result was not so much a race as a dogfight, with plenty of Top Gun references as the trio chucked three Porsche 911 GT3s around the same track that hosted the very first Formula 1 Grand Prix in 1951. Unlike the Porsches in the film we’ll hold off on the spoilers, but do look out for the hilarious missile lock sequence.
Exhaust: As evidenced by his tire-smoking, sideways-driving antics, Cruise really can drive. You’ve seen him in NASCAR for Days of Thunder and Red Bull even let him take the wheel one of its Formula 1 cars in the past. He certainly handles this Porsche better than the 928 he drove in Risky Business.
What the now-merged LMH and LMDh classes mean for Glickenhaus and Peugeot
Intake: U.S.A. underdog Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus and Peugeot may each face complications under the newly-merged Le Mans Hypercar and Le Mans Daytona Hypercar classes. IMSA’s president, John Doonan, confirmed to sportscar365.com that, to be eligible for participation in the stateside WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, an OEM must build 2500 road-going homologation units per year. Glickenhaus, with yearly production under 5000, qualifies as a low-volume manufacturer under the NHTSA definition. While the numbers add up, a 2500-unit run could majorly strain the independent, boutique automaker. The mighty Peugeot, now under the Stellantis corporate umbrella, faces a branding issue; all competitors in the WeatherTech series must be “established OEMs” in the North American market. The French automaker fled the U.S. market in 1991, and recent plans to bring it back have apparently been scrapped.
Exhaust: We reached out to Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus for comment, and it appears the team is keeping its cool: “We look forward to our meeting with Jim France at Le Mans and are confident that we will solve this matter,” says Jim Glickenhaus. Meanwhile, Racer reports that Peugeot is entertaining the notion of a part- or full-time IMSA effort with a Dodge-branded version of its recently revealed 9X8 hypercar. Does this mean we might see Dodge return to Le Mans? We’re skeptical; it depends whether Stellantis finds it worthwhile to field a second, Dodge-branded team at Le Mans just to qualify (a Dodge-branded) Peugeot for IMSA competition in the states. A hybrid V-6 “Dodge” at the Circuit de la Sarthe seems strange no matter which Mopar era you compare it to. It’s more likely that a “Dodge” flies its flag in the WeatherTech Championship, and Stellantis leaves Le Mans to Peugeot.
Executive order encourages FTC to take action in “Right to Repair” debate
Intake: It looks like right-to-repair advocates now have the support of President Biden. A new executive order urges the Federal Trade Commission to take action on “unfair anticompetitive restrictions” that limit third-party repair or self-repair of automobiles. The order, issued on July 9, also encompasses industry restrictions on other consumer goods. The executive order comes after the Alliance for Automotive Innovation sued to block a “Right to Repair” law that Massachusetts voters passed last year.
Exhaust: Although automakers claim that the right-to-repair law means they “would have to abandon existing cybersecurity controls that protect safety- and emissions-critical functions,” the new executive order may tip the scales in favor of mechanics and do-it-yourselfers. Neither the FTC nor the Alliance for Automotive Innovation has released a formal statement, but you can be sure that the fight is far from over.
Triumph motorcycles announces plans to joins the motocross and enduro markets
Intake: The motocross and enduro market is rich with competition, but Triumph sees potential and is planning to dive in head-first. This morning the Hinckley brand declared its intentions to not only produce a “a comprehensive range of all-new competition Motocross and Enduro motorcycles” but also “to race and win at the highest level in the sport.” Tall orders, but Triumph has two big names—Ricky Carmichael and Ivan Cervantes—as brand ambassadors to help guide the new effort.
Exhaust: This seems like a very bold move, but a few factors in the background may be encouraging Triumph. The market for off-highway machines in the U.S. has never been hotter, and every brand wants a chunk of that cash. There is also a deal between Triumph and Indian manufacturer Bajaj to collaborate on a few road-going models, a deal which could lend Triumph access to the KTM parts bin, since Bajaj is a major shareholder in the Austrian brand. We can only hope this comes to fruition and the resulting bike is more than a KTM in a different color.
Hummer EV too pricey? GMC’s building a more accessible, full-size electric pickup
Intake: The Hummer EV pickup won’t be the only EV with a bed in the GMC lineup. This second GMC offering will join the Chevy Silverado and the aforementioned Hummer in GM’s stable of bed-equipped BEVs, and will likely hew closer to the more traditional, less-flashy recipe of the Silverado. However, a less glamorous options sheet also means a more approachable price; the cheapest Hummer stickers around $80K and won’t be available for another three years. The as-yet unnamed GMC pickup is unlikely to beat the Hummer EV2 to market, however.
Exhaust: While the Hummer EV will burnish GMC’s halo, this pickup will be the true test of the brand’s ability to transition loyal, lumber-hauling buyers from ICE to EV. “I’m very confident GMC will be a big winner in this space,” says Duncan Aldred, global head of GMC. Though GMC remains tight-lipped, expect the EV pickup to ride on GM’s Ultium architecture and be both priced and equipped to take on the 2022 F-150 Lightning and Silverado EV.