New Mustang colors, Maybach goes electric, Lordstown’s line lives
Ford shows every color of new Mustang
Intake: Ford made an animated image to highlight the several shades of blue, gray, silver, and red, plus the requisite black and white, that will be offered on the 2024 Mustang. Two noteworthy shades are the iconic Grabber Blue, which returns for 2024, and Ember Blue, only available on the Dark Horse. The sheer volume of grayscale colors might put you in a somber mood, but at least Yellow Splash and Race Red can brighten up the EcoBoost and GT trim levels.
Exhaust: Take a look at Dodge’s kaleidoscopic palette for its rear-wheel drive performance machines, and you might hear a sad trombone playing as you watch Ford’s animation. (I’d take a Dark Horse in Mopar’s F8 Green.) But Ford and Mopar fans can both agree that no matter what the .gif’s creator says, if the first word of an acronym is “graphics,” you pronounce it “gif” and not “jif.” Because graphics are not ju-raphics. — Sajeev Mehta
Rivian to open charging network to public
Intake: A new report from Automotive News indicates that Rivian will open its rapidly growing, proprietary charging network to the public as early as next year, according to executives at the company. The Rivian Adventure Network currently has 30 sites using DC fast chargers that were developed and manufactured at the automaker’s Normal, Illinois, factory, but it has hundreds more in the works. CEO RJ Scaringe says the company is targeting 600 locations within two years, with six chargers at every location—sometimes more. He sees opening the network to the public as a way to help alleviate a massive pain point to EV ownership. “In the United States, there’s been a massive underinvestment in charging infrastructure,” said Scaringe on the tech podcast WVFRM earlier this month. “A year from now, the density of Rivian chargers will really help solve a lot of these core issues, and we’ll see third-party networks start to build up as well.”
Exhaust: If this sounds a lot like what Tesla recently did, that’s intentional. At a recent investor conference, Rivian CFO Claire McDonough suggested that Rivian could receive government funds, like Tesla did, to bolster its charging network—on the condition that the stations would eventually be open to the public. With charging infrastructure trailing EV adoption, this move is good news for anyone whose ride uses electrons instead of gasoline. — Nathan Petroelje
Honda Trail125 lightly refreshed for 2023
Intake: Honda’s powersports lineup is focused on many types of buyers, but those looking for fun, nostalgic rides don’t have to look much further than the Trail125, which is returning for 2023 with an updated engine that, Honda claims, increases efficiency. With electronic fuel injection and enough off-road capability to go just about anywhere, the Trail125 is an easy choice for anyone craving two-wheel adventure. Buyers looking for 2023 models don’t have to wait to get their hands on one; they can find the new Pearl Organic Green color at their local Honda dealer this month.
Exhaust: Continuing the Trail125 model seems like a no-brainer to us, and we are happy to see even slight updates that show Honda is not going to just let the model age out on its own. Combining the style of those classic ’60s models with modern suspension, braking, and engine tech is a winning package.— Kyle Smith
Mercedes-Maybach goes electric
Intake: Another one of the automotive landscape’s most luxurious nameplates is going electric. This new Mercedes-Maybach SUV, dubbed EQS 680, is based on the (slightly) more pedestrian EQS 580 SUV from Mercedes-Benz, but Maybach turns the swank to 11 with touches like an upright Mercedes star on the hood, 22-inch monoblock wheels, and two-tone paint with hand-applied pinstripe. Inside, things get even ritzier. Aside from the gargantuan 56-inch hyperscreen in the front, rear-seat occupants also get dual 11.6-inch displays mounted to the front seatbacks as well as a detachable tablet than can be used even while outside of the vehicle. Gorgeous Nappa Leather in all sorts of browns, whites, and tans can be selected, as can scores of natural wood decorative touches. Those lounging in row two will get heated, cooling, and massaging seats as standard, with the option to add things like calf massagers to their build. Champagne coolers, thermal cupholders, and the like are on offer—as they should be.
No word yet on battery size, but we know that the Maybach EQS 680 SUV’s two electric motors churn out a combined 649 hp and 700 lb-ft of torque and that Mercedes estimates roughly 350–370 miles of range.
Exhaust: Mercedes-Maybach was keen to highlight just how much engineering and thought went into the noise, vibration, and harshness (NVH) management for this ride—particularly for those sitting in the rear. Expect to be able to hear the bubbles in your champagne while on the go. How luxurious! — Nathan Petroelje
Lordstown motors resumes production
Intake: Lordstown Motors said on Tuesday that production and deliveries of its Endurance electric pickup truck resumed this month after a pause in February to fix some quality issues, according to Reuters. The Endurance pickup is targeted at the fleet market, though sales to private individuals are permitted. The Ohio manufacturer, which took over a shuttered GM plant, has been struggling to get production off the ground.
Exhaust: According to Reuters, Lordstown also said it has struck a deal with Amerit Fleet Solutions to provide service and maintenance for its fleet customers. The trucks are unique because they are driven by motors mounted on each wheel hub rather than placed on the front or rear axle. In January, the EV company forecasted that production would slow through its first quarter due to supply-chain issues, especially with respect to the availability of hub-motor components. — Steven Cole Smith
Audi will test new F1 engine this year
Intake: According to a new report from Automotive News, Audi revealed its plans to test its Formula 1 hybrid drivetrain before the end of 2023. The drivetrain, which is comprised of an engine, an electric motor, a battery, and an electric control unit, will be Audi’s first attempt developing at such a unit for F1 competition. The German marque announced last August, at the Belgian Grand Prix, that it plans to join the F1 grid in 2026, the first season for F1’s newest engine regulations.
Exhaust: Everything seems to be on track for the Four Rings’ maiden foray into F1. The hybrid drivetrain announcement is yet another confirmed component for its burgeoning Audi Formula Racing GmbH team—the German marque’s newest team founded for F1—which now employs more than 250 engineering specialists. Sauber, the Swiss motorsport engineering company, has already partnered with Audi. In addition to personnel, Audi plans to increase the footprint at the Competence Center Motorsport in Neuburg, Germany by adding a new building that adds over 32,000 square feet. The team’s launch date is still over two years away. What will be the next piece to fall into place? — Cameron Neveu
Gif like Gift, Not jift! Jif is peanut butter.
The new Mustang at first glance looks like a Camaro. So Camaro is leaving and Mustang picked it up??
Two too many greys for me, replace with a light green metallic and a gold/brown/bronze/copper metallic. Blue Ember is hard to make out so I might replace that with an orange or dark red.
Better yet, keep all these colours and add eight more. Just no more grey.
Lots of good colours for the Mustang; I’d happily take a GT convertible in Grabber Blue, Race Red, or Rapid Red. Glad to see some bright colours, including yellow, in today’s bland-colour-car world.