10 Rumors of 2015 We Wish Would Come True
Published October 28, 2015
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Ah, rumors… They make the automotive world go around. What’s great about rumors in the automotive world is that there is often a lot of truth in them. From executives who don’t realize the quickness slipups spread across social media to savvy spy photographers that see through the disguises test mules wear, it makes our job as journalists much easier.
In celebration of the automotive equivalent of a wardrobe malfunction, we assembled 10 rumors from this year that we wish would come true.
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A Mid-Engine Corvette
The rumor of a mid-engine Corvette has been around for decades, but it has always been quickly shot down by the company. In 2015, this rumor has sprouted a healthy set of legs and is running rampant throughout the industry. Hell, there were even images of a hacked-up Holden Ute with the engine in the rear that tossed a five-gallon canister of high-test on this smoldering rumor.
At this point, it is almost a certainty that there will be a mid-engine Corvette in the near future, especially with the unveiling of the mighty Ford GT.
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The Return of the Ferrari Dino
The Ferrari Dino was the “poor man’s” way of getting a prancing horse in his garage. Well, according to rumors, which were fueled by a statement from Ferrari chairman Sergio Marchionne, the Dino will return at some point. Rumors insist that this model will hover in the low $200k range and come with a turbocharged V-6 engine handling propulsion.
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Next-Gen GT-R will be a Hybrid
One model that often churns the rumormill is the Nissan GT-R, and the latest rumor is that the next-gen model will feature a hybrid powertrain. Don’t go thinking that this will be some thrifty hybrid setup, as rumors indicate it will produce as much as 800 horsepower. Rumors also indicate that the next-gen GT-R will launch in 2018 and feature design cues from the wild Concept 2020 Vision Gran Turismo.
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Nissan Z Sub-Brand
The Nissan Z is another car that is a hotbed of rumors and speculation. The latest rumors center on the Z becoming a sub-brand instead of a single model. The wildest of these rumors is that the Z sub-brand will eventually spawn a performance crossover. This rumor was somewhat validated by the Gripz concept that Nissan recently debuted.
Another rumor that stems from this is the introduction of a smaller Z car that features a turbocharged four-cylinder engine.
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Return of the Toyota Supra
The Toyota Supra’s return has dominated the rumormill for years, but in 2015, these rumors have hit a fever pitch. The partnership between Toyota and BMW to produce the next-gen Z4 have added more fuel to the fire. What’s more, the introduction of the FT-1 – a Toyota concept sports car that looks production friendly – gives us a possible look into what the next-gen Supra will look like.
For now, Toyota is remaining pretty quiet on the new Supra, but its return seems to be a near certainty at this point.
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Mazda Reviving the Rotary Engine
The rotary engine has been gone since Mazda gave the so-so RX-8 the axe treatment. New rumors have surfaced about the resurrection of the rotary engine as emission technology continues to improve.
The issue with the rotary has long been its ability to produce power in a clean, efficient, and reliable way. The rotary engine has long had problems with being a gas hog and fragile when it is pushed for more power. According to rumors, Mazda’s new rotary engine will solve all of these problems.
Some validity has been given to these rumors by yesterday’s unveiling of the RX-Vision concept and its SKYACTIV-R rotary engine. While this is far from confirmation, it is definitely a step in the right direction.
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Honda S2000 Successor (AKA the Baby NSX)
Pretty much since the debut of the first concept NSX, Honda fans have been clamoring for it to spawn a successor to the S2000. The S2K had a nice run between 2000 and 2009, but in the end it fizzled out when Honda had about maxed out the 2.2-liter VTEC engine and drivers still had to wring it out to nearly 7,000 rpm to reach its meager 162 pound-feet of torque.
Recently, patent images of what looks like a smaller, convertible version of the NSX have spawned reports of a successor of the S2000. The introduction of the Honda S660 has added some fuel to this growing fire.
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Mazdaspeed MX-5 in the Works
The new Mazda MX-5 has been one of the more polarizing releases in recent years, as many MX-5 enthusiasts love its back-to-basics ethos, like its low-curb weight paired with a modestly powered four-cylinder engine. However, some see a ton of untapped potential, as its retuned Mazda3 engine leaves a lot to be desired.
This desire to see a more powerful MX-5 has led to new reports of a possible Mazdaspeed version. Mazda has thus far shut down these rumors, but the Japanese automaker is known for holding its cards close to its vest.
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Mercedes’ V-12 Supercar
The SLS AMG is officially a goner, and in its place is the smaller, more agile, and more accessible Mercedes-AMG GT. Some buyers, however, want more, which has led to rumors of a new Mercedes supercar. What’s more, this new supercar is rumored to make use of a V-12 engine.
The rumors claim that this V-12 engine will carry a pair of turbochargers and a hybrid system. The vehicle that results from this could produce upward of 1,000 horsepower, making it a competitor to the likes of the 918 Spyder, McLaren P1, and Ferrari LaFerrari.
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Tesla’s Smaller Crossover
Tesla CEO, Elon Musk, tends to tweet irresponsibly at times. This time around, he mistakenly revealed that the brand is working on a smaller crossover dubbed the Model Y. He quickly deleted that tweet, but like all things on the Interwebz, it lives on long after his deletion in the all-knowing cache.
Anyone with knowledge of Musk’s sixth-grade sense of humor (no, that’s not a jab at him, most of us males have this level of humor) see the rationale behind naming this the Model Y… Tesla’s lineup would then spell S-3-X-Y.
Categories: Gear Grinding