Automotive News Roundup: Lewis Hamilton Co-Designs LH44 Edition Superbike

Some manufacturers seemingly have saved some of their most exciting news for the tail end of the year.

With more major automotive shows on the horizon, this week saw announcements of everything from concept cars that eventually will become a reality, to products that will utilize cutting-edge technology and others that will be manufactured in limited numbers.

Here are three stories that made waves throughout the automotive world this week:

Nissan Reveals New Leaf NISMO Concept
Nissan has designed Leaf NISMO concept cars in the past, but this one is different.

The newest concept, of which Nissan revealed pictures Monday, is based on the updated Leaf and will be put into production.

Aimed at attracting more customers, and changing the public’s perception of Nissan’s five-door EV, the NISMO-tuned Leaf further improves on the new model’s design. The car is fitted with red-accented splitters and skirts, as well as a rear end that’s very reminiscent of the one on the Sentra NISMO sedan.

Lewis Hamilton, MV Augusta Co-Design LH44 Limited Edition Superbike
Formula One driver Lewis Hamilton already is living out his dream of helping Mercedes-AMG develop a hypercar with its upcoming Project One, but he also has been working on another performance vehicle that actually will sport his personal branding.

Hamilton has partnered with Italian manufacturer MV Augusta — of which AMG owns a 25 percent stake — to co-design a special edition superbike. Both the bike’s name, the Dragster RR LH44 Limited Edition, and its production cap of 244 units are nods to the three-time world champion’s race number.

Although Hamilton and MV Augusta announced the project Sept. 28, the 32-year-old racer actually arrived at the paddock in Monaco riding the bike, and performed burnouts for a crowd of fans — though at the time people assumed it was a one-off. There’s no word on whether Hamilton’s partnership with MV Augusta means he has terminated his sponsorship agreement with Honda Motorcycles.

Land Rover Adds Plug-In Hybrid To Range Rover Sport Lineup
Land Rover will offer a new powertrain option for one of its most popular models.

On Tuesday, the British automaker revealed the updated Range Rover Sport, which in addition to styling tweaks, now has an available plug-in hybrid powertrain.

Dubbed the P400e, the hybrid Range Rover offers a combined power output of 398 horsepower, has two hybrid driving modes and can travel 31 miles on electric power only. Land Rover said the Range Rover Sport P400e is expected to be available summer 2018.

Thumbnail photo via Mercedes-AMG Peronas

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