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Car news, 19 Apr ’24: Next Tesla Model 3 Performance info leaked ahead of reveal, Mazda debuts CX-80 luxury SUV, and more


Every important car news story breaking today, one convenient read

Thanks for joining us this Friday April 19th 2024. Notably in car news today: the next instalment in the story of the Tesla Model 3 Performance is almost here as information leaks early, and Mazda Australia confirms its next premium SUV, the CX-80, will launch in Australia by the end of 2024. 

Browse this issue:

Key details for next Tesla Model 3 Performance leak online 

Tesla Model 3 RWD 2024 front 3/4 far
The 2024 Tesla Model 3 RWD
  • Information surrounding the next hi-po Tesla Model 3, called the Performance, has leaked online, according to Motor1
  • According to the automotive website, the upcoming Model 3 Performance will use new electric drive units to produce over 373kW (500hp). Tesla has reportedly claimed that the Performance is the most powerful Model 3 ever.
  • Given the outgoing Model 3 Performance produced 393kW, it’s expected the new iteration will offer a superior power figure, perhaps to around 447kW (600hp).
  • How will you pick a Performance apart from a pack of Teslas? Well, some of the other new features include lightweight staggered wheels, a redesigned front fascia, new rear diffuser and a carbon spoiler to complete the Tesla’s look.
  • Expect an official reveal of the new Model 3 Performance in the coming days or weeks, as Tesla begins to update their global websites. 

2024 Mazda CX-80 luxury three-row SUV revealed 

This is Mazda’s next premium SUV, and it’s called the CX-80
  • Mazda Australia has confirmed that its next luxury SUV, the CX-80, will be landing on local shores before the end of 2024
  • Unveiled overnight in Europe, the CX-80 is positioned as a longer and taller SUV than the current Mazda CX-60. It will be offered in a choice of petrol and diesel straight-six engines, as well as a plug-in hybrid option, much like the rest of Mazda’s new ‘premium SUV’ lineup. 
  • The SUV will be available with two second-row configurations, with the choice of either a three-row bench, or a two-seat row featuring captain’s chairs
  • All variants of the CX-80 will use Mazda’s all-wheel-drive system and multi-link rear suspension, as well as an array of driver-sense safety systems.
  • Expect more information on Australian pricing and specification to be revealed in the next couple of months. 

BYD’s Fang Cheng Bao sub-brand debuts four new EVs, including supercar concept

Fang Cheng Bao, a BYD company, has four new models coming soon!
  • BYD’s subsidiaries are quickly expanding, and now, its sub-brand Fang Cheng Bao has debuted four new models, including a supercar concept vehicle. 
  • As a rival to the MG Cyberster, the brand’s Super 9 concept is a two-seat supercar which uses scissor doors and is roofless. It also uses carbon-fibre seats and a dual cockpit, with individual enclosures for the driver and passenger. 
  • Also debuting is a budget electric four-wheel drive called the Super 3, and the Bao 8 large SUV
  • Fang Cheng Bao is positioned below the Yangwang but above Denza brands in the BYD family of subsidiaries. 
  • The new models are expected to be shown in full next week for the Auto China event in Beijing. Stay tuned to Chasing Cars for more updates. 

Ford of America teases new Mustang variant: what could it be?

What could be lurking underneath? Odds are it’s the next Mustang GT500
  • As part of Ford’s Mustang 60th anniversary celebrations, the Blue Oval also hinted that a new variant of Mustang is coming. But what could that be?
  • It’s possible that a model that sits above the high-performance Dark Horse will happen for the seventh-generation ‘Stang, and could be the long-awaited Shelby GT350 or Shelby GT500 successor. 
  • Expect more aero, more power and the addition of a supercharger to a slightly different V8 engine to feature, just as it has for the GT350 and GT500 in the past.
  • Matt Simpson, general manager of Ford’s enthusiast vehicles, said during the 60th birthday festivities: “It is going to be another addition to the Mustang stable. We are not stopping with Mustang … we are continuing to grow the family. We cannot wait to show you more.”  
  • The seventh-generation Mustang is due in Australia in the second half of 2024, after several delays. Upgraded GT, Ecoboost and new Dark Horse variants are all confirmed. 

2024 Isuzu MU-X 1.9L reviewed

Isuzu has added its 1.9-litre four-cylinder turbo diesel engine to the MU-X lineup
  • Chasing Cars production specialist Tom Place’s review of the 2024 Isuzu MU-X 1.9L was published, including his thoughts on how the smaller engine performed during the Australian media launch of the large SUV.
  • Place found that key positive points were that the smaller 110kW/350Nm 1.9-litre engine was frugal with its fuel use, had a broad mid-range torque band and came with an overall lower purchase price.
  • However, on the not-so-good points, Place found that the 1.9-litre had less peak torque than a Hyundai Tucson, it was only $2000 cheaper than the existing 140kW/450Nm 4JJ3 3.0-litre variants and the smaller engine unfortunately isn’t available on the flagship LS-T (yet). 
  • In concluding, Place found that although the new 1.9-litre addition to the MU-X range was the more efficient choice, he’d still recommend the larger-displacement 3.0-litre engine, instead.

READ: Link to written review 

The next issue of Car News Today will be published on Monday 22nd April at 4.30pm Sydney time.