Abilene, Kansas, United States
The wheel ranks right up there with the telescope and four-slice toaster in the pantheon of inventions that have moved humankind forward. But what if a circle in three dimensions had never occurred to anyone, and we all had just moved on without it? Perhaps we'd be driving around in Lucas Motors Landspeeders with anti-gravity engines. Or maybe we'd have the same cars we do today, just without wheels.
That's the thought experiment that seems to have led French photographer Renaud Marion to create his six-image series called Air Drive. The shots depict cars throughout many eras of motoring that look normal except for one thing: they have no wheels. The models used include a Jaguar XK120, Cadillac DeVille (shown above), Chevrolet El Camino and Camaro, and Mercedes-Benz SL and 300 roadsters.
Perhaps one day when our future becomes our past, you'll be able to walk the street and see with your own eyes the rust and patina of age on our nation's fleet of floating cars. Until then, Monsieur Marion's photographs will have to do.
Cadillac has officially released pricing for the 2014 XTS Vsport. Buyers can expect to pay $63,020 for the fleet four-door, including destination and handling fees. That kind of coin will snag you a twin-turbocharged 3.6-liter V6 good for 410 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque. As you likely already know, engineers have done a lot more than simply bolt a pair of turbos onto the company's tried and true naturally aspirated 3.6-liter V6. The engine uses an all-new block, strengthened connecting rods and domed aluminum pistons and is fed through a revised direct-injection fuel system. Combined, the tweaks allow the V6 to suck down 12 psi of boost.
The price tag puts the 2014 Cadillac XTS Vsport well under potential (if ambitious) competitors like the Audi S6 at $71,900, plus destination fees. A base BMW 550i will set you back $62,700, excluding destination charges, but throwing options at the German sedan will quickly see that number climb higher. You can check out the full press release below for more information.
Cadillac is in the midst of some big changes. It's got a new chief executive. It's taking some distance from parent company General Motors and moving to a new headquarters in New York. And it's instituting a new naming scheme that will allow not only for a more clear progression in its lineup, but also for more models. But that's not the end of the story. Not by a long shot.
Speaking with Automobile magazine, Cadillac's new president Johan de Nysschen revealed his intention to develop several new models and powertrains. For starters, he does not want Cadillac to continue borrowing engines from the GM parts bin, but intends to develop a new range of engines specifically for the luxury automaker. The program will likely start with smaller-capacity engines but eventually lead to new V8s as well, taking the place of the long-serving Northstar engine that finally ended its lifespan a few years ago after some two decades of production. Along with other technologies, de Nysschen envisions possibly sharing these powertrains with other GM divisions, but developing them first and foremost for Cadillac.
The bigger question, however, is where those engines would go, and de Nysschen had some thoughts to share on that front as well. For starters, the former Infiniti and Audi exec sees room for an even bigger sedan above the upcoming new CT6 that will cap the current range. Maybe even two of them. But that's not all. Johan wants to see Cadillac get (back) into the sports car game with a new halo model or two - something it hasn't really done since the Corvette-based XLR roadster. A pair of new crossovers are also said to be in the works, flanking the SRX on both sides with smaller and larger models.