Car Hack's Notebook: Reporting from the Essen Show, Day Three

Most people would be more than satisfied with the fast-as-amphetamines Porsche Carrera GT, which is famous for knife-edge handling and a capacity to test even the best driver. But apparently not everyone is so easily pleased, as Gemballa has now seen fit to strap two turbochargers to the Carrera's engine to create… » 12/06/06 2:14pm 12/06/06 2:14pm

Car Hack's Notebook: Covering the Essen Show, Day Two

Volkswagen Audi Group can feel a bit slighted not to be the first port of call on the Essen show, but even a four-wheel drive, 300 hp battle wagon can't make a huge impression in this company. Still, the Passat R36 is a serious piece of kit in its own right, and should be an enticing alternative for those who want… » 12/05/06 1:20pm 12/05/06 1:20pm

Car Hack's Notebook: Reporting on Porsches from the Essen Show

At a show where pure lunacy struggles to get through the door, it was always going to be tough to pick out a star, but that's the job and ignoring the more obvious option here it is: The Mission 400 Plus. Now why this modified Porsche above the countless others that littered the show? Well how's about the basic… » 12/04/06 3:04pm 12/04/06 3:04pm

Essen Show Preview: Cobra N+ Nissan Qashqai

Our chap about town, Nick Hall, is hanging around Germany's Essen tuner show (like the US's SEMA), attending to the ladies vehicles on display. While he's there, he'll likely come across Cobra's N+ program as applied to the Nissan Qashqai, the company's new compact SUV currently only available in Europe. The package… » 11/30/06 1:39pm 11/30/06 1:39pm

A Smart 210hp: Brabus's Forfour Concept

Famed Mercedes tuning shop, Brabus, set their sights a bit, er, smaller, with a new smart forfour concept it plans to show at the Essen show this weekend. Sporting a roll cage and racing seats, the concept — which isn't in production (yet) — is juiced to over 200hp (210hp, actually), a symbolic threshold for the… » 11/25/05 9:51am 11/25/05 9:51am

Audi's Q7 S-Line, S4 Cabrio to Debut at Essen

Audi's chosen the Essen tuner confab to launch a one of its own in-house tuners, the S4 Cabrio — which gets the same 4.2-liter V8 as its hardtop sibling — and one kind-of tuner, the Q7 S Line — a sports-package version of its new SUV with upgrades like a sports suspension and 21" wheels. To be fare, the S-Line truck… » 11/23/05 9:28am 11/23/05 9:28am

AC Schnitzer's New Mini Cooper S Concept

John Cooper Works, check the rear-view. German tuning house, AC Schnitzer will be showing off its new Mini Cooper concept tuner at the Essen Euro-tuner hoedown next week. The Mini was designed — A collaboration with GT-car builder Drexler Motorsport — to adopt the road feel of a race car, from its cockpit (Recaro… » 11/22/05 11:15am 11/22/05 11:15am

New Mercedes S-Class Tuner from Carlsson to Debut at Essen

Those aftermarket technologists from way down by the River Saar, Carlsson, will unveil their newest Mercedes tuning job, the CK50, based on the 2006 S-Class, at the Essen motor show next month. On the performance side, the relatively mild engine kit boosts horsepower of the stock 5.5-liter V8 to 429 US (435 metric)… » 11/10/05 3:34pm 11/10/05 3:34pm

Startech to Bring Chrysler 300 CRD Tuner to Essen

If you've never seen the European Chrysler 300C Touring, you may be shocked to see the leonine nose cone of the 300C sedan attached to the business end of a Dodge Magnum. It's a distinctly European model, one we'll never see on these shores. Still, it's a Chrysler, meaning it's fair game for German tuning house,… » 11/08/05 3:01pm 11/08/05 3:01pm