In this week's round-up of automotive gossip, Ferrari chats Dino namesakes, Audi talks hot hatch sales prognosis and much more.
What's in a name?
The new 296 GTB is Ferrari’s first V6 road car since the 1969 Dino 246, but the revival of the Dino name was never on the table, said commercial boss Enrico Galliera. “It’s true, there are some similarities – mainly the engine. But the Dino didn’t carry the Ferrari badge, because it was developed to attract new clients, to enter a new segment, and Ferrari accepted some compromises in terms of dimensions, space, performance and price.” The 296 GTB, he said, is a “true Ferrari” with far more power and different aspirations.
Audi's hot hatch sales success
Will the new Audi RS3 Sportback hot hatch sell well, given the existence of the same-engined RS Q3 crossover? “We hope the new RS3 will continue the sales success story of its predecessor,” said product boss Marcel-Alexander Hübner. “The RS Q3 speaks to a different customer, and that’s why these two cars aren’t cannibalising one another. They’re superbly positioned in the market.”
Lexus tips tradition
Lexus will follow company tradition in using underpinnings from parent company Toyota for its new-era EVs, but European vice-president Pascal Ruch isn’t happy for the brand to take a back seat on development. “Lexus has to take the lead on product development, because it feeds into the product life cycle,” he said. “To take multimedia as an example, the [new] NX [crossover] will be the first vehicle in the company to launch the new platform, which means a bigger screen, a faster system and improved ease of use. It’s what we call a Lexus first.”