BBC Autos

Week in pictures: DiCaprio racecar runs on star power

  • Leonardo DiCaprio, racecar entrepreneur

    Monaco-based Venturi Automobiles announced that it had entered into a joint partnership with the film actor, in which the two would field a team in the coming Formula E series. The open-wheel, purely electric racing series kicks off in September 2014 in Beijing. In a statement, DiCaprio – long an advocate for hybrid and electric propulsion – said: “Venturi Grand Prix has shown tremendous foresight in their decision to create an environmentally friendly racing team, and I am happy to be a part of this effort.” (Photo: Newspress; Dominique Charriau/WireImage)

  • Meet BMW’s new M cars

    After a year of previews, BMW unveiled its M4 coupe and M3 sedan. The coupe (pictured) is based on the 4 Series, previewed as a concept at the 2013 Detroit auto show and recently placed into production, while the sedan derives its shape from the current 3 Series. Each car draws motivation from a 3-litre turbocharged in-line six-cylinder engine generating 425 horsepower and 406lb-ft of torque, which BMW estimates can propel both sedan and coupe from zero to 60mph in 3.9 seconds (dual-clutch transmission) or 4.1 seconds (six-speed manual transmission). (Photo: BMW USA)

  • GM names first woman CEO

    In a first for the automotive industry, a woman has been chosen as chief executive of a major automaker. Mary Barra, formerly the head of global product at General Motors (GM), was tipped to succeed outgoing GM chief Dan Akerson (above, in background), who announced he would leave the post in January 2014. Akerson, who helped steer GM from its 2009 bankruptcy towards profitability, cited his wife’s cancer diagnosis for his sudden departure. Barra enters the job with 33 years of experience at GM, having cut her teeth in senior engineering, manufacturing and human resources positions. (Photo: General Motors)

  • Volkswagen bus says goodbye – in Portuguese

    The Volkswagen Type 2 bus inched closer to the end of its 56-year production run in Brazil – the last market that produces and sells the iconic people-mover. Workers in Sao Bernardo do Campo assembled some of the final examples of the bus, which has been sold under names ranging from Kombi to Transporter since its world debut in 1950. In June 2013, Volkswagen do Brasil announced a special edition of the bus, limited to 600 units, to close production. (Photo: Nelson Almeida/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Ford Fusion goes autonomous

    In partnership with the University of Michigan, Ford is developing an autonomous version of its Fusion Hybrid sedan. Far from being a production mule in the traditional sense, the Fusion will act as a test bed for “future automated driving and other advanced technologies”. The automaker has also recently run durability tests on unmanned Transit vans driven by robots. (Photo: Ford Motor)