Motoring Research covers the car news that matters to motorists and car buyers. If it’s of interest to drivers and car owners (and motorcycle fans, van owners, even reluctant car buyers), it will be on MR car news. Also follow us on Twitter and Facebook

HGV EU CO2 emissions

'Uncontrolled' HGV CO2 emissions RISE 36% since 1990

HGV EU CO2 emissions

Will trucks get a CO2-based taxation system similar to that applied to cars and vans?

The European Commission is to target Europe’s lorry sector for the first time in an effort to reverse a worrying rise in CO2 emissions. Read more

Toyota Aygo

Toyota is world’s most valuable car brand – again

 

Toyota Aygo

The most valuable car brand in the world has reinforced its top dog position in 2014

Toyota has again been named the most valuable car brand in the world – and is the world’s 26th most valuable brand of all, reveals a new report. Read more

Toyota Aygo

Toyota is world's most valuable car brand – again

 

Toyota Aygo

The most valuable car brand in the world has reinforced its top dog position in 2014

Toyota has again been named the most valuable car brand in the world – and is the world’s 26th most valuable brand of all, reveals a new report. Read more

2015 Mercedes-AMG GT teased

If you’re glum that the thunderous Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG is no longer in production, don’t be. There’s a new hot rod with a three-pointed star in town.

This is the first picture of the new 2015 Mercedes-AMG GT – a sports car from the German firm that will go up against the Porsche 911, following its debut at the 2014 Paris Motor Show.

On Bing: see pictures of the 2015 Mercedes-Benz AMG GT

Find out how much a used Mercedes-Benz AMG cost on Auto Trader

The silhouetted teaser shot shows a long bonnet, a relatively upright windscreen and a fastback-style, tapered rear end, suggesting the AMG GT may sport a hatchback to improve boot space and long-distance touring ability.

It does at least look the part and should deliver plenty of visual impact from this initial, heavily disguised image, even if the proportions do seem slightly awkward to us.

But we’ll put that down to a trick of the light for now…

At the heart of any sports car – and especially an AMG – is the engine. Mercedes has already confirmed that it will be a V8, but exactly what capacity and whether it will be turbocharged is not yet known.

However, we expect at least 500hp, with motive force delivered by a “downsized” 4.0-litre twin-turbo uni,t based on two 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo petrol engines from the firm’s A45 AMG model spliced together.

That four-cylinder unit is already a total firecracker, so doubling up can only mean good things for fans of performance and noise. Compared to AMG’s naturally aspirated 6.2- and twin-turbo 5.5-litre V8s, it should prove more efficient, too.

In true AMG fashion, drive will be sent to the rear wheels via a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox similar to that in the A45, with the 0-62mph sprint taking less than 4.0 seconds. But don’t rule out a four-wheel drive option in time, either.

The name is also an interesting one – rather than calling it the “Mercedes-Benz AMG GT”, the new car is the first model to be branded “Mercedes-AMG”.

This is small but significant, as it shows Mercedes’ intent to build a performance car to topple the Porsche 911, and that this has been developed from the ground-up with AMG involvement – a modified cooking Merc this is not.

Although Mercedes did recently reveal the AMG GT’s interior, detailing the extensive levels of technology it will cram into its new model, any other details surrounding the car are scarce.

We know the AMG GT will go on sale at the beginning of next year after being shown publicly for the first time at the 2014 Paris Motor Show in September. However, as for price, there’s no official (or even unofficial) information yet.

Expect the 2014 Mercedes-AMG GT to cost around £100,000 when it hits the market.

On Bing: see pictures of the 2015 Mercedes-Benz AMG GT

Find out how much a used Mercedes-Benz AMG cost on Auto Trader

Read a Mercedes-Benz review

Mercedes-AMG GT: 911 rival’s interior revealed

Porsche Carrera GT

Bank Holiday special: Porsche Carrera GT to be auctioned by BCA

Porsche Carrera GT

At a loose end this Bank Holiday? Why not go and bid to buy a Porsche Carrera GT?

The Porsche Carrera GT is unquestionably one of the most desirable cars in the world. Very few were made and – perhaps unsurprisingly – they don’t come up for sale all that often. Read more

Skoda Rapid Greenline

Launch pad: Skoda Rapid GreenLine

Skoda Rapid Greenline

We’re making a beeline for Amsterdam and the launch of Skoda’s new Rapid Greenline today…

We’re used to manufacturers churning out so-called ‘green’ versions of their hatchbacks with CO2 emissions below the 100g/km barrier – meaning free road tax and favourable company car tax rates. Ford has its Focus Econetic, Volkswagen has its Golf Bluemotion, and Vauxhall has its Astra Ecoflex. Read more

Honda motorcycle training

Honda UK launches Honda School of Motorcycling centres

Honda motorcycle training

Buy a bike, learn how to ride it – Honda dealers can now literally help people saddle up and go

Wannabe motorcyclists in the South of England will soon be able to train at a new Honda School of Motorcycling. Read more

Nissan Pulsar

Watch out VW Golf! Nissan Pulsar family hatch revealed

Nissan Pulsar

Nissan Pulsar or Volkswagen Golf? This autumn, family hatch buyers will be able to decide

The new Nissan Pulsar five-door family hatchback has been revealed – and will start battling the Volkswagen Golf and Ford Focus from autumn 2014.

The new model marks Nissan’s return to the C-sector – Britain’s second most popular – after huge success with the brand-defining Qashqai. The Pulsar does not replace that car, but supports it and will be hoping to draw in buyers currently driving more traditional rival hatchbacks.

New Nissan Pulsar to launch in the autumn

It’s not a British-built car – Nissan’s making it in Barcelona – but uses a variation of the Qashqai’s able platform and will offer a familiar range of all-turbo engines: 1.2 DIG-T 115hp, 110hp 1.5 dCi diesel and, early in 2015, a 190hp 1.6-litre turbo.

Will this model create a hot hatch Pulsar, possibly ripe for Pulsar Nismo branding, we wonder?

Nissan’s not revealing any detailed technical specs yet, but has confirmed the 4,385mm long car will have, at 2,700mm, the longest wheelbase in its class. And 692mm rear kneeroom is more than some cars from the class above.

There will also be models emitting less than 95g/km CO2.

It’s no Qashqai – on purpose

Nissan Pulsar 02

Design wise, first images suggest it’s a neat but unadventurous-looking machine, one that’s not as striking as the Qashqai crossover. Intentionally so, given the relative conservatism of regular hatch buyers compared to crossover choosers?

Nissan’s proud about the LED light technology, the ‘V-motion’ grille, and says the “bold, energetic curves” have been designed and engineered for Europe.

Curiously, it’s not revealed the interior yet, other than a stock boot shot, but it’ll be packed with technology, including the second generation NissanConnect system. This has full smartphone integration, plus Google Send To Car, and is packed with apps.

Safety Shield is the tech highlight but Nissan adds that the Pulsar “is the only car in its sector to offer Moving Object Detection, Lane Departure Warning and Blind Spot Warning as standard on at least one model in the range”.

Pulsar: Nissan Almera, reinvented

Nissan Pulsar 05

Seven years ago, the Qashqai marked the reinvention of Nissan’s generally dull model range into the hit line-up it is now. It also effectively signalled the end of Nissan’s presence in the mainstream family five-door market, then represented by the mundane Almera.

The Pulsar marks its return. We’ll find out later this year how successful it’s going to be – and whether the Golf and Focus should be worried…

Skoda Octavia vRS 280 rumour

280hp Skoda Octavia vRS rumoured for 2015

Skoda Octavia vRS 280 rumour

New 280hp Octavia vRS rumoured to celebrate 40 years of Skoda RS. Sssh, nobody tell Ford…

Skoda will celebrate 40 years of the RS brand in 2015 – and there are rumours it will mark this with a hot 280hp special edition version of the current Octavia vRS. Read more

Koenigsegg One:1

Koenigsegg One:1 to debut at Goodwood FoS

Koenigsegg One:1

Goodwood FoS will play host to the remarkable Koenigsegg One:1. It’s a Top Trumps legend in the making…

Koenigsegg’s mental Agera One:1 will make its UK debut at the Goodwood Festival of Speed next month. Read more