Tag Archives: Sports Car

Porsche 718 Boxster S: Driving Dream

The Porsche 718 Boxster is no longer the entry level sports car at Porsche, that title now goes to the new 718 Cayman. Since its launch in the late ‘90s, the car has grown tremendously. It is wider, longer and lower than its predecessors. In fact, the only part of the car that remained similar in size is the engine. In keeping with Porsche’s current trend of downsizing engines and turbo-charging, the new 718 comes in a 2.0 L (300 hp) and 2.5 L (350 hp) turbo-charged guise. This is the first time in many decades that Porsche has featured a 4-cylinder engine in one of their cars.

So what is it like? Well I picked up a Porsche 718 Boxster S from Porsche Singapore and I can attest that aesthetically, it is one of the prettiest roadsters on sale today. Over the few days that I had the car, I had a number of people approach me with praises of the car’s good looks, especially with the top down. I wasn’t surprised — it has got that old-school, wide, mid-engine charm that gets you excited and makes you want to drive it constantly.

I remember the Boxster commercial I saw when the car originally came out; it really stuck with me, considering I was only about 14-years-old then. A guy awakes from a coma after several decades, goes out to the garage and hops into his classic 550 Spyder. As he’s driving along, a Boxster overtakes him and both drivers are completely amazed at what they’ve seen. If the commercial was released today with the new car and the 550 owner driving the original Boxster, the reaction would still be the same.Porsche GT Silver 718 Boxster S

Inside, it is typical Porsche, with a similar set-up to the new 991, minus a few switches and instrument gauges. The quality is as good as ever and the car is packed with tech, including the new Apple Play functionality. The cabin is spacious and one of the best features about the 718 Boxster’s layout is its front and rear boots. This makes the car extremely practical for a two-seater and great for road trips.

My car was fitted with the latest PDK dual clutch transmission and the Sports Chrono Package. Saying that shifts are quick would be an understatement by any measurement. Setting up launch control is a breeze as well if you want to get the ultimate acceleration. Change a few traction and shift settings, plant your foot, the car holds revs briefly and then launches you forward at speeds you never thought possible in a 4-cylinder vehicle. The claimed 4.2 seconds to 100 km/h is easily believable. I wouldn’t be surprised if it went quicker.

However, to get the most out of the vehicle in normal driving situations, you really need to have it in the right gear; I did notice more turbo lag than in the 991 and although not terrible by any means – the engine crackles and pops on downshifts, forcing me to keep speeding up and slowing down to the “delight” of my passenger and the car in front – the note isn’t as aural as the previous Boxster.Porsche GT Silver 718 Boxster S

As with previous Boxsters though, the handling is spot on. There is not another car on the market in this category that handles corners with the same finesse as this one does. The chassis and aero set-up are perfect whether you’re on a back road in Singapore or at a race track in Germany. There’s a hell lot of grip and the steering is very communicative so you can feel what the car is going to do next.

So here is the big question, would I buy one? The SGD316,588 starting price is a lot to ask for a four-cylinder engine. However, this is Singapore and that is a great price for a car that really beats all its nearest competitors in the 300k range. The 718 Boxster S is a great looking and performing car, along with the pedigree of one of the sports car greats. The original Boxster really turned things around for Porsche and made them the brand they are today. The new 718 clearly re-emphasizes the importance this car plays in the line-up and builds on the qualities of the original.

Review: BMW M2 Goes Back To Basics

The brand new BMW M2 has received a lot of publicity the world over. With stablemates that have apparently lost their soul and become computers on wheels, the M2 is said to feel like the M cars of old. A straight 6 engine paired in this instance to a DCT gearbox, we take one out on the streets of Singapore to see what she can really do.

Getting into the M2 is familiar to getting in most BMW’s of the current generation. Comfy sports seats hug you and keep you in place, while the iDrive systems features prominently on the centre console. This car featured a keyless start system and as I pushed the starter button, the straight 6 comes to life with a typical BMW-esque burble. I select drive and pull away. Like with most modern sports cars, it’s incredibly comfortable to cruise around town in, yet when you want to drive faster, a completely different car rears its head.p90199664_highres_the-new-bmw-m2-coupe

Stopping at a traffic light, I decide to have a play around with the iDrive system. This thing is packed with tech. Attempting to figure out how to use it all without reading the manual – like I did – will result in ages of confusion and banging your head against the wall trying to complete simple tasks. BMW were the first car manufacturer to bring out a knob scrolling command centre. Once you get the hang of how to use it, it’s amazing, however it’s a lot more complex than many of the touch screen systems. The idea is that you can control most of the functions of the vehicle using the system and it has some pretty cool features. For instance, I can connect my GoPro camera to the system and film my driving through the screen.

As I pull away from the lights and head towards some corners, the two best single aspects of the car make themselves known and I feel first hand why everyone is in love with this car. That engine is a joy, I would have preferred the manual transmission to shift gears as the DCT can be a bit fidgety, however the mere urgency the engine creates when under acceleration is fantastic. There’s minimal lag from the TwinScroll turbo chargers and the thing really pulls hard. The 0 -100 km/h in 4.3 seconds is easily achievable from the 365 hp on tap. Secondly, the car feels light and likes to play around the corners. It has electronic stability and traction systems, but they’re not overly imposing and allow for some leeway if you want to make things a little lairy. The car is confidence inspiring and things never feel uncontrollable. From a small performance sports coupe, you want it to be fun and easy to throw around. This new M2 allows for this a lot more than its bigger relatives.p90210196_highres_bmw-m2-coupe-02-2016

I was surprised at how practical the car is to use as a daily driver as well. There’s a lot of room inside both front and back. Two medium sized adults can easily fit in the rear seats. There’s also plenty of boot space. You can get a couple sets of golf clubs in there or some suitcases for a weekend away.

This car deserves a 4 out of 5 stars. It offers great performance and it’s very useable and practical as a daily drive. Go for the manual transmission and you’ll have a smile on your face. If you’re in the market for a four seater performance car in this price range, it would definitely be my top choice. Oh and did I mention it looks great?

This article was first published in Palace.

BMW M4 DTM Championship Edition

BMW M4 DTM Championship Edition Unveiled

The BMW M4 DTM Championship Edition is yet another special model from the company in its centenary year, but one glance at the car’s vital statistics should have well-heeled keen drivers around the world rejoicing.

That’s because this model’s differences are more than skin deep. There’s the obligatory special exterior paint finish – Alpine White with BMW racing stripes. There’s also a large carbon fiber rear wing, side skirts and different front and rear aerodynamic elements. But lift that hood and the 3-liter six-cylinder engine that would normally output 431hp will give 200 lucky owners 500hp instead, plus an extra 50Nm of torque (600Nm).

What’s more, the car has the same ingenious water injection system that until now was only available on the equally collectable M4 GTS. This piece of technology sprays water into the chambers ahead of combustion to cool the engine before the fuel arrives. The fuel comes in colder and therefore denser, meaning it detonates with a bigger, more efficient bang, meaning more performance and less waste.

All of these powertrain enhancements mean the car can go from 0-100km/h in 3.8 seconds instead of the usual 4.3 seconds – seriously impressive considering the rear wing – and on to an electronically limited top speed of 305km/h.

Of course with that much power on tap, the suspension has been significantly altered too and fade-free ceramic brakes are standard equipment.

However, although this is a track car first and foremost, it hasn’t jettisoned all creature comforts. Ok, it’s a two seat rather than four-seat car in this configuration (the rear passenger seats have made way for a racing roll cage), but there’s still an infotainment system, air conditioning, satnav, parking sensors and the carbon fiber racing seats have been wrapped in Alcantara.

“Never before has one of our edition models been so closely linked to motor racing,” said Frank van Meel, President of BMW M GmbH. “Congratulations to Marco Wittmann, his team RMG and the entire crew from BMW Motorsport.”

The BMW M4 DTM Champion Edition 2016 will cost from €148,500 (roughly $165,000) and will be limited to 200 examples, globally.

Cadillac-V-Series

Cadillac Launches V-Performance Academy

If you’re getting yourself a V-Series Cadillac, chances are you’re going to want to learn how to drive it – properly. Yes, all cars require more than a basic driving license if you really care about getting the best driving experience possible. If you agree with that sentiment, you’re in luck because the American automaker has begun offering a two-day track school for customers of the aggressively sporty ATS-V and CTS-V at the new V-Performance Academy.

Located permanently at the Spring Mountain Motor Resort and Country Club in Pahrump, Nevada, entrance is completely free-of-charge, and the proud owners of 2017 model year Cadillacs will enjoy admission priority. A single-day V-Performance Lab program will also be available across other racetracks in the country, such as Lime Rock Park and Circuit of the Americas, though it will be far less intensive.

“Cadillac is a brand for passionate people, by passionate people,” said Nathan Tan, associate director of Brand Partnerships and Experiences for Cadillac. “V-Series customers are in many ways nearest the core of the Cadillac brand, and we are proud to offer this valuable training with our thrilling products.”

In the meantime, here’s what you can expect from Cadillac’s V-Series:

Lotus Elise Race 250 2016

Lotus Elise Race 250 Sets Track Record

Meet the Lotus Elise Race 250, a brand new car that has already bested the company’s customer car lap time on its own test track. To mark the 50th anniversary of its famous Hethel, Norfolk factory firing into life, Lotus has conceived the Elise Race 250, a car it describes as its best track-focused Elise since the model’s launch back in 1996.

The Elise Race 250 is faster around Lotus’s test track than even the Elise Cup 220 R and with a lap time of just 1 minute 33.5 seconds, it is the quickest lap the company has ever recorded for a customer car based on the Elise.

“Lotus was established to build race cars and with 68 years’ experience, no one knows more about extracting the best performance possible,” said Jean-Marc Gales, CEO of Group Lotus plc. “The Elise Race 250 is the fastest, most focused Elise we’ve ever produced and, judging by what it’s capable of on track, it looks set to become a favorite with our racers around the world.”

To make the Race 250 perform so well on the track yet still remain eligible for FIA race series around the world, Lotus has turned to weight saving rather than to engine mods. The car features the now familiar four-cylinder 1.8-liter supercharged 243hp engine aligned to a six-speed manual transmission. And in a car that tips the scales at under 900kg dry (i.e., when void of fluids and fuel) that’s more than enough power.

To get the weight that low — the Elise Cup 250 is 931kg for example — everything for the aluminum chassis to the battery have been overhauled to cut unnecessary kilos. The seats are carbon fiber, the wheels forged from an ultra lightweight alloy and the headlamps replaced with blanking panels.

However, Lotus has also added several serious features. The first is a serious aero package that generates up to 155kg of downforce when the car is traveling at its top speed of 248km/h.

Then there’s the FIA compliant A-Frame harness bar, roll cage, fire extinguisher system, towing eyes (front and rear) and battery isolator system in case of fire.

And so that owners can tune the car’s set-up to suit the circuit, conditions or simply their driving style, the front anti-roll bar is adjustable, as are the Nitron dampers and Eibach coaxial coil springs. The finishing touches are AP Racing twin-piston front calipers on the front and Brembo single-piston rear calipers on the back for breaking.

The Elise Race 250 will cost £53,500 in the UK and $76,200 (excluding local taxes) in the US.

This story is also available in Bahasa Indonesia. Read it here: Lotus Elise Race 250 Pecahkan Rekor Catatan Waktu

Porsche, Chopard Honor Le Mans With Limited Editions

The Le Mans 24-hour race is possibly the ultimate on-track test for drivers out there – forcing them to undergo intense non-stop racing in order to challenge the endurance of both man and machine. Speaking on non-stop, Porsche has been enjoying a non-stop winning spree here for a long time already, enjoying a record-breaking 18th victory at this year’s race. Coupled with that win, though, Porsche and their official timing partner Chopard are announcing limited editions inspired by endurance racing. One of this is the limited edition called the Porsche 911 Endurance Racing Edition, and the other is the Chopard Superfast Chrono Porsche 919 Black Edition.

The Porsche 911 Endurance Racing Edition

porscheendurance.f2926100436.h0

Since 1964, the Porsche 911 has always kept its basic outline and engine position, proving that it maintained an enduring appeal and stature from the very start. Even then, the special exclusive arm of Porsche aimed to create a model that can enjoy the best possible track performance on the road. In other words, the goal was always to create a race car that was also road-legal. A sneak peek was offered at Le Mans but it will be properly showcased at next weekend’s Goodwood Festival of Speed.

Taking the Carrera S as a starting point for further modification, it keeps the stock 3-liter flat-six twin turbo powerplant. This gives it 420hp as well as a 191mph top speed; power and the acceleration are improved via a revised chassis.

The model rides 20mm lower than standard, and comes with the Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control and Active Suspension Management systems. With this, power is always going to the wheel with the most traction, and wheels can be pushed up or down to either ensure contact with the road, or cancel out excessive force. It also introduces rear-wheel steering as standard. This provides quite a bit of flexibility in the various scenarios encountered on the road.

There’s also the Sports Chrono package, allowing the owner to time laps, perform racing starts, and even have a ‘boost function’ at their command. This function is entitled the “Sports Response” and will push out everything the engine’s got in one 20-second blast upon activation.

The interior will be fitted with black leather and subtle red accents, as well as carbon fiber. For the sake of the driver, there are quite a few comforts such as a sliding sunroof and parking sensors. Even more of a joy for serious drivers though, is the inclusion of seven-speed manual transmission as standard.

The Superfast Chrono Porsche 919 Black Edition

Superfast Chrono Porsche Motorsport 919 Black Edition - 1 - Black - 168535-3005

As the official timing partner for Porsche, Chopard aims to celebrate their legacy of speed with their own Superfast watch collection. The Black Edition is a 100-piece limited series exclusively available at their boutiques. It combines the aesthetic codes of the new Porsche prototype with the special precision for which the watch company is well known.

Sketch - 1 - Superfast - Case 1

A sleek 45mm diameter case made of titanium houses the Chopard Calibre 03.05M. This mechanism was desgined like an authentic engine and features a self-winding chronograph movement delivering a substantial 60-hour power reserve. It also features a flyback function. To further improve on its endurance, the case has also been bead-blasted and blackened by a DLC (diamond-like carbon) treatment – ensuring scratch-resistance. It is water resistant to 100 meters so you can go swimming with it quite safely.

This standout chronograph is designed mainly for the passionate racer in mind, even coming with a black rubber strap inspired by slick competition racing tires. No doubt Chopard Co-President Karl-Frederich Scheufele’s own love of racing played a part in the development of the Chopard Superfast Chrono Porsche 919 Black Edition.

Here’s a video that describes the relationship.

Custom Job: Ferrari 458 MM Speciale

The Ferrari 458 Speciale was distinctive when it was first released in 2013, which is only fitting for what is a souped-up version of the 2009 Ferrari 458 Italia. All versions of the 458 were phased out in 2015 so if you get one brand new today, you can count yourself extremely fortunate. For one mysterious British customer though, a rare car just wouldn’t cut it. Thus, the 458 MM Speciale was born. The bespoke Ferrari made its debut on Tuesday during a shakedown testing on the Fiorano circuit. Ferrari-458_MM_Speciale_article

The one-of-a-kind creation has a few similarities other 458s, with a few unique features in the mix. Like the collectible 458 Speciale, the bespoke Ferrari boasts a 4.5 litre 600 hp V8 engine and can go from 0 to 100km/h in three seconds on its way to hitting a top speed that exceeds 200mph. The differences begin with the exterior that is re-sculpted in aluminum and carbon fibre composites while also featuring side air scoops as well as a re-worked nose and tail. Ferrari-458_MM_Speciale_article-1

The custom Ferrari that was designed in-house by the Ferrari Styling Centre showcases sporty lines —a request of the client— as well as a glasshouse that resembles the 1984 Ferrari GTO. This wraparound solution sees the windscreen and side windows become one seamless glass surface while also lowering the roofline. The roofline joins the side scoops in adding to the aerodynamic revision of the new car. Ferrari-458_MM_Speciale_article-2

Thanks to the unique additions, Ferrari could afford to modify the car further by having the cooling radiators mounted closer together. With the help of the side scoops, the car is able to provide direct additional cooling to the engine. The downforce is evenly balanced thanks to a spoiler on the tail — something that you would not find on current production Ferraris. The customization of the car doesn’t stop there: the owner also requested specific wheels that are exclusive to the car along with an upgraded audio system as well as Ciccolato leather upholstery with white stitching and satin white rings around the tunnel controls.

Porsche Cayenne Platinum Edition

Don’t let its tough exterior fool you – the Cayenne is Porsche’s gentle giant. During its debut in 2002 as Porsche’s first-ever SUV, the model stood out like sore thumb amongst the German automaker’s sleek sports cars. The irony, then, is that the Cayenne was responsible for turning Porsche’s fortunes around during a period of stagnation but that is a story for another time. The point is that this Cayenne may well be the coolest one ever created.

Kitted out with either a 3-liter 262hp V6 engine or a 416hp gasoline/electric hybrid powertrain, the Platinum Edition’s upgrades are more than skin deep. The 20-inch RS Spyder alloy wheels (previously 21-inch 911 Turbo design) on the all-wheel drive are designed for sports performance and a refined drive through urban spaces.

The 5-door SUV also boasts one of the best infotainment units around, with a Bose sound system as standard and Power Steering Plus with ParkAssist that works together with the infotainment system’s display.

While both versions come standard with privacy glass and anti-glare mirrors, only the hybrid version enjoys stationary air conditioning and heating – a very useful feature in hotter countries with which drivers can cool or heat the cabin remotely. Yes, this means you can prep the car for your arrival without actually being at the wheel.

Inside, electrically operated leather and Alcantara sports seats provide a high-level of ergonomics, each one embellished with Porsche crests on the headrests. The stainless steel doors are backlit while a special analogue clock completes the dashboard.

The Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid Platinum Edition offers a combined fuel economy of 3.4-3.3l/100km (47mpg) and will cost €90,298 in Europe ($81,600 in the US, plus delivery and handling fees) when deliveries commence in June, 2016.

Meanwhile, the diesel edition manages 6.8-6.6l/100km and will cost €74,352. A lack of interest in diesel power in the U.S. means that Porsche will be offering its U.S. customers a 3-liter 300hp gasoline V6 option at $65,600 instead. Both versions will be available in black, white as standard, though a variety of five metallic colors are also available.

 

This story was written in-house, based on an AFP report.

McLaren 570S Coupe orange

McLaren Reveals the 570S Coupe

McLaren 570S Coupe

Ahead of the 2015 New York auto show, British automaker  showed off its latest creation, the 570S Coupe.

Described as the most usable McLaren in history, the 570S Coupé promises hair-raising performance on and off the track but wrapped up in a carbon fiber package that is easy on the eye and easy to live with as a daily driver.

McLaren 570S Coupe grey

The 570S, revealed on Tuesday ahead of the New York International Auto Show on April 2, is aimed at those who would ordinarily be debating whether to buy a Porsche 911 Turbo S or an Audi R8 V10 Plus.

And, on paper at least, the baby McLaren is better than both.

McLaren 570S Coupe orange

As its name suggests, it has 570PS — that’s 562bhp — on tap and, because it’s built pretty much exclusively from carbon fiber and other exotic super-strong yet lightweight materials, it weighs just 1313kg, meaning it’s lighter than any of its competitors and boasts a power to weight ratio of 428bhp per ton.

McLaren 570S Coupe interior

As for performance, those numbers translate into a 0-100km/h time of 3.2 seconds, a 0-200km/h time of 9.5 seconds and a top speed of 328km/h (that’s 204mph). But as Porsche continues to demonstrate, acceleration, speed and handling are only elements of a much larger equation in this segment; if the McLaren really wants to join this exclusive club, it also has to perform well in inner-city areas, on car parks and be an adequate long-distance cruiser.

McLaren 570S Coupe grey photo

That’s why the 570S has a redesigned suspension set-up that won’t dilute its red-line cornering or grip but that will ensure it rides gently on highways and byways when switched from sport to normal mode.

And why the door openings and sills have been designed as much to make entry and exit easy as they have to improve aerodynamics.

McLaren 570S Coupe interior

The cabin is also more comfortable as standard than the bigger McLarens — the seats are plush and wrapped with leather, as is the dashboard, the infotainment system is up to scratch and there’s even the option of a premium 12-speaker Bowers and Wilkins sound system (a weight-saving four-speaker sound system comes as standard). The cabin also offers stowage space to complement the 150-liter luggage compartment up front.

McLaren 570S Coupe grey back

However, perhaps the most impressive thing about the new car is that despite having a twin-turbocharged 3.8-liter V8 engine and a top speed in excess of 200mph, it has a combined cycle fuel economy of 25.5mpg (11.1l/100km) and carbon dioxide emissions of 258g/km meaning that US owners can avoid the gas-guzzler tax.

The car will be displayed at the 115th New York International Auto Show from April 3 to 12 at the Javits Center. 

Bugatti Veyron La Finale

Watch the Making of the Bugatti Veyron La Finale

Bugatti has already built and sold the last Veyron, the “La Finale”, which was presented at the Geneva auto show earlier this month.

Bugatti Veyron La Finale

The last Bugatti Veyron was built entirely by hand, just like the 449 cars before it, as the following video uploaded by the automaker shows.

Bugatti Grand Sport Vitesse La Finale

The Bugatti Veyron “La Finale” is an homage to the first Veyron built in 2005, sporting a similar black and red paint scheme.

The Ferrari 458 Speciale A

5 must-see sports cars at the Paris Motor Show

At the 2014 Paris Motor Show, these five , concepts and luxury vehicles stand out as some of the most remarkable.

Ferrari 458 Speciale A

The Ferrari 458 Speciale A

Ferrari chose to premiere this new supercar in Paris. Powered by a 605hp V8, the 458 Speciale A will be produced in a limited series of 499 units.

The most powerful convertible ever produced by the Italian manufacturer, the model rockets from 0 to 100km/h in just 3 seconds.

Lamborghini Asterion

Asterion

For its part, Lamborghini revealed the Asterion LPI 910-4 concept, a sports car with a total output of 910hp from its 5.2-liter V10 engine teamed with three electric motors. The combination enables a top speed of 320km/h and 0 to 100km/h acceleration in 3 seconds.

Maserati Alfieri

Maserati Alfieri

The Maserati Alfieri concept is a tribute to the founder of the brand, which is celebrating its centenary in 2014.

Designed as a study for a future coupe, the Alfieri is more aggressive and compact than the GranTurismo and packs a 4.7-liter V8 engine with 460hp.

Bentley Mulsanne Speed

Bentley Mulsanne Speed Paris

The latest model from the British car maker is presented as the world’s most powerful luxury car, boasting a 6.75-liter V8 with 537hp.

Slated to go on sale in early 2015, the car boasts a top speed of 305km/h and goes from 0 to 100km/h in 4.9 seconds.

Mercedes-AMG GT

The Mercedes-AMG GT

Presented in person by Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche in Paris, the new Mercedes-AMG GT is due to go on sale in spring 2015.

Under the hood, the sports car has a new 4.0-liter twin turbo V8 engine with 462hp, enabling 0 to 100km/h acceleration in 4 seconds and a top speed of 304km/h.

Don’t miss our TOP 10 CONCEPT CARS AT THE PARIS MOTOR SHOW

Mercedes AMG GT

2016 Mercedes-AMG GT revealed (pictures)

Mercedes AMG GT

Compact, agile, eco-friendly yet powerful and practical to boot, the Mercedes-AMG GT has its sights set on wowing not just the Porsche 911 faithful but potential Lamborghini, Aston Martin and even McLaren clients.

Unveiled to the world’s motoring press at a special event on Tuesday night, the Mercedes-AMG GT is a replacement for the company’s outgoing SLS AMG, a car that was all about conspicuous performance.

And although the Mercedes-AMG GT and its predecessor clearly share some DNA, it has been built with a focus on lifestyle rather than just good or striking looks and on offering a serious alternative to a host of similarly attractive serious drivers’ cars.

“The new Mercedes-AMG GT is a sports car in its purest form,” says Gorden Wagener, Vice President Design Daimler AG.

“Breathtaking proportions, powerfully sculpted surfaces and flowing lines turn the new AMG into a contemporary sports car which embodies the spirit of the glorious Mercedes sports cars. The GT is a consummate combination of beauty and intelligence.”

2016 Mercedes-AMG GT

But will beauty and intelligence be enough for the car to break into a market dominated by the Porsche 911 Turbo, which offers blistering performance, bulletproof build quality and sufficient levels of comfort, practicality and exclusivity to work as an almost everyday car?

On paper, the answer is ‘yes’. The range-topping ‘S’ variant can go from 0-62mph (100km/h) in 3.8 seconds, and onto a top speed just shy of 200mph (320km/h), thanks to an all-new biturbo hand-assembled V8 engine, yet it is capable of returning 30mpg on the combined cycle and CO2 emissions of 219 g/km.

And it should be a joy to drive at any speed whether in a straight line or negotiating a hairpin turn, thanks to almost 50/50 weight distribution, a new suspension set-up which includes clever dampers that can step in to stop the car’s body rolling, and an electronic differential.

2016 Mercedes-AMG GT interior

Mercedes claims that the new tech should also make the car predictable and even well behaved when on the limit.

In terms of practicality, it has a proper hatchback trunk so there’s 350 liters of space for luggage, and it comes with a host of cutting-edge driver aid technologies including semi-autonomous systems — such as parking assist, collision avoidance and automatic emergency braking.

And then, of course, there’s the cabin: the styling is heavily influenced by aviation and the space offers levels of comfort and an infotainment system that frankly none of its competitors can match.

The cockpit of the future Mercedes AMG GT

If the Mercedes-AMG GT can deliver on the road what it promises on paper, then it is a car that is going to give Porsche a serious headache.

However, Mercedes isn’t the only company looking to challenge the 911 or the 911 Turbo. McLaren is getting ready to reveal the P13 and Aston Martin is busy developing a new two-seat super coupé, while the second-generation Audi R8 could launch before the end of 2014 too.

All of which means that in 2015, supercar customers with €140,000 ($175,000) to spend, are going to be spoiled for choice.

Atalanta motor car

After 75 years, the Atalanta returns

Atalanta motor car

The British sportscar company is back with a special hand-built, classically styled roadster which combines 1930s good looks with 21st century mechanical know-how.

A car that was elegant, expensive and technologically advanced in equal measure, the original Atalanta, launched in 1937, had a tubular steel chassis at a time when most cars were still being built from wood.

It also had independent suspension for better handling and road holding. Then there was the matter of the optional V12 under the hood.

Its huge cost and the outbreak of the Second World War halted production in its tracks, but 75 years on, the marque is set to be reborn, and from the looks of the first images, the company is picking up exactly where it left off.

The new Atlanta will be a ‘restomod’ in that it will keep the 1930s exterior but will be a thoroughly modern sportscar underneath and, a bespoke one at that, as each new car will be an individual commission based on client tastes and performance expectations.

The company also promises the highest levels of craftsmanship — each body panel will be formed from aluminum using ashwood for shape and strength, just like coachbuilders of the 1920s and 1930s.

The car will be making its official debut at the International Concours of Elegance at Hampton Court Palace in the UK later this week.

McLaren range

McLaren 500S to arrive in 2015

McLaren range

After presenting the P1 GTR concept and a racetrack version of the 650S at Pebble Beach, McLaren is reportedly preparing the 500S, which will be more affordable and less powerful than the 650S.

This entry-level model will likely be unveiled at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show, according to the British publication Car Magazine.

As indicated by its name, the McLaren 500S is said to have a maximum output of 500hp from its 3.8-liter twin turbo V8 engine.

DON’T MISS: TOP 10 MOST POWERFUL CARS IN THE WORLD

Previously known as the P13, this car is slated to be more affordable, less technically advanced but also more spacious compared to the current 650S.

On the contrary, its exterior appearance could be quite different, according to comments made by McLaren Automotive CEO Mike Flewitt. Its carbon fiber chassis should ensure its lightweight construction and top-rate performance.

There will eventually be three versions of the model: an entry-level McLaren 500S Coupe to be launched during summer 2015, a 500S Spider (convertible) in 2016 and finally a 500S GTS (a sportier model) by 2018.

Finally, the magazine’s sources inform that the McLaren 500S could sell for as little as €140,000 or £110,000 (around $187,000).

This price would place the new sports car in competition with high-end editions of the Porsche 911 and the Audi R8, for example.

porsche 918 thumb

Top 10 most powerful production cars in the world

The Dodge Charger may be the most powerful four-door production car ever built, but where does it fall in the list when compared to production cars of all shapes and sizes?

1 Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Super Sport – 1200hp

Bugatti Veyron 16 4 Super Sport

This is the world’s fastest, most powerful production car. There are other companies, from Koenigsegg to Hennessey Performance, that currently offer vehicles with even more horsepower, but none of those cars meet the definition of a production car – 30 or more identical examples built.

The Koenigsegg 1:One is the most powerful car ever built, but the company will only ever build six, each of which will be different, whereas Bugatti has sold 435 Veyrons to date.

2. Ferrari LaFerrari – 950hp

2013 LaFerrari

A work of automotive art, the latest hypercar from the Italian masters uses a combination of a V12 petrol engine and an electric motor to deliver the fastest, most extreme driving experience of any Ferrari to date, while somehow being kinder to the environment.

3. McLaren P1 – 903hp

McLaren P1 supercar

Another hybrid, this time from UK supercar builder McLaren. All 375 P1s have already been snapped up and it’s not difficult to see why when you read the performance figures.

4. Porsche 918 Spyder – 795hp

porsche 918 spyder concept

You wait a generation for a hybrid supercar to arrive then, like a London bus, three turn up at once. Unlike the Ferrari or the McLaren, the Porsche also offers four-wheel drive and drop-top motoring, thanks to a removable roof panel.

5. Ferrari F12 Berlinetta – 730hp

Ferrari F12 Berlinetta photo

No battery packs, no electric drive, just a phenomenally powerful yet smooth V12 and so much power and so much grip that you run out of road before you run out of performance.

6. Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat – 707hp

Dodge Challenger SRT hellcat

Thanks to that supercharged 6.2-liter engine, the Charger and its sister model, the two-door Hellcat Challenger, are in sixth place on the list, ahead of the Lamborghini Aventador…

7. Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4 – 690hp

Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4 back

…which finds itself in seventh place due to a 17hp shortfall. But what it loses in flywheel power it makes up for in looks, acceleration – 0-62mph in 2.9 seconds – and a 217mph top speed.

8. Ferrari FF – 651hp

Ferrari FF World Premiere

The only other car on this top 10 list to offer four seats and space in the back for suitcases, the FF is meant to be a family grand tourer and is the first Ferrari with four-wheel drive and integrated iPads.

9. McLaren 650S – 641hp

McLaren 650S supercar

The second McLaren on the list it is available as a hard top or convertible and was launched earlier this year at the Geneva motor show.

It has a glorious 3.8-liter V8 under its carbon fiber hood and is capable of going from 0-100kph in under 3 seconds.

10. SRT Viper – 640hp

2014 Dodge SRT Viper TA

The only other US car to make the top 10 is also a Dodge. The Viper is built to the same template as the original Shelby Cobra – a lightweight body with a huge engine. In this case a V10 that was co-developed with Lamborghini and that also found a home in the recently retired Lamborghini Gallardo.

1962 Ferrari 250 GT SWB Berlinetta

Bonhams to auction 10 extraordinary Ferraris

1962 Ferrari 250 GT SWB Berlinetta

Ahead of the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, on August 15, Bonhams will hold an exceptional auction at the Quail Lodge in Carmel, California, including the sale of 10 extremely rare Ferrari sports cars.

The total estimated value of the automobiles in this “Maranello Rosso Collection” is over $33 million.

The most exceptional vehicle going under the hammer at the sale is a 1953 Ferrari 250 Mille Miglia Berlinetta appraised at between $9 and 12 million.

1953 Ferrari 250 MM Berlinetta

 

Presented at the Geneva Motor Show in 1953, the model was piloted by Phil Hill, among others, and provided the inspiration for a range of models (250 Tour de France, 250 GT Short-Wheelbase, 250 GTO).

The Maranello Rosso Collection consists of a number of other vintage race cars, including the 1962 250 GTO Berlinetta piloted by Jo Schlesser, the Dino 166/246T driven in both F2 and Tasman Championships (by Chris Amon), a 1978 F1 312 T3 (driven by Carlos Reutemann and Gilles Villeneuve), and a 512 BB that competed in the Le Mans 24 Hours race in the early 1980s.

1969 NART Ferrari 365 GTB 4 Daytona Competizione

Lovers of fine cars will also be able to bid on the rare 365 GTB and 365 GTC or on a Dino 206 GT.

The 10 automobiles in the “Maranello Rosso” collection 

1953 – Ferrari 250 MM Berlinetta ($9 – 12 million)
1958 – Ferrari 250 GT Series 1 Pininfarina Cabriolet ($6.5 – 8.5 million)
1962 – Ferrari 250 GT SWB Aerodinamica ($4 – 7 million)
1962 – Ferrari 250 GTO Berlinetta (undetermined)
1968/69 – Ferrari F2/Tasman Dino 166/246T ($1.2 – 1.8 million)
1969 – Ferrari Dino 206 GT ($500,000 – 700,000)
1969 – Ferrari 365 GTC ($750,000 – 1 million)
1969 – Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona ($650,000 – 800,000)
1978 – Ferrari F1 312 T3 ($1.5 million – 2 million)
1981 – Ferrari 512 BB/LM ($1.2 million – 1.6 million)

All of the automobiles are to be sold without reserve. This collection is only a small part of the sale organized by Bonhams, which will include the auction of over 300 lots over two days (August 14 and 15).

SEE ALSO: FANGIO’S RARE F1 MERCEDES SELLS FOR $29.6 MILLION

 

Watch: Mercedes teases new GT

The new range-topping, AMG-tuned supercar will replace the current SLS when it launches this September.

The new car will “thrill with breathtaking design and supreme agility” and that inside and out will boast cutting-edge design, materials and technology.

Sleeker and with a lower center of gravity than the SLS, the AMG GT does indeed look nimble and more sculpted for slicing through the air at high speed, but there will be no clear idea of what the finished car looks like until its official reveal at the Paris motor show in September.

Mercedes-AMG GT cockpit

Although the car’s exterior is still somewhat of a secret, we do know what the interior will look like thanks to previously published images.

Mercedes has confirmed that power for the car will come from a 4-liter twin-turbo V8 engine capable of pumping out at least 500bhp.

And, in order to maintain the excitement in the months leading up to the reveal, Mercedes plans to dripfeed fans and motoring journalists alike performance data, such as top speed and acceleration as well as other pertinent specifications over the coming weeks.

QUANT e-Sportlimousine concept (Video)

On display at the 2014 Geneva Auto Show is an all-electric sports car concept by nanoFLOWCELL called QUANT e-Sportlimousine.

QUANT e-Sportlimousine

Apparently, the QUANT e-Sportlimousine comes with flow cells that combine electrochemical accumulator cells and fuel cells. To put it in simple words, the QUANT’s batteries are 5-times for efficient than conventional lithium-ion ones.

Measuring 5.25 metres in length, 2.20 metres in width, and 1.35 metre in height, it uses four in-wheel motors to sprint from 0-100 km/h in just 2.8 sec and reach a top speed of 380 km/h, while providing a range of 400-600 km.

QUANT e-Sportlimousine back

That’s faster and more powerful than anything on this year’s Ferrari, Porsche, Lamborghini, McLaren or Bugatti stand.

Inside, it’s surprisingly subtle. Everything is covered in an ultrafine wooden veneer that looks like solid wood until the ignition is activated and the car’s dials and touch screens come to life behind it.

QUANT e-Sportlimousine interior

The brand has a history of building concepts that remain just that but this time it promises things are going to be different and a road-going version could be seen as early as 2015.

Audi Quattro Concept frontal

Audi to build Sport Quattro GT

Audi has confirmed that its superfast Frankfurt show car will be going into production as a standalone GT range.

Audi Quattro Concept frontal

The concept car, built to celebrate the original Audi Quattro’s 30th birthday, was an absolute monster in terms of potential power and performance, thanks to a 560PS V8 engine mated with a 110kw electric engine.

That meant it was capable of hitting 100kph in under four seconds and delivering a combined 700PS of power and 800Nm of torque.

Audi Sport Quattro concept back

However, that sort of hybrid power doesn’t come cheap — for proof just look at the only other cars offering that sort of package: the Porsche 918 Spyder, the McLaren P1 and the Ferrari La Ferrari.

So Audi is planning to offer a very slightly watered down version of the car as a serious GT car that will sit just below its R8 hypercar in terms of price tag and performance.

Audi Sport Quattro concept interior

Audi will offer the car with smaller engines and different levels of trim to make it more appealing to more potential customers, and to lower production costs sufficiently to bring the car to market within the next two years.

Audi Sport Quattro concept

In an interview this week with Top Gear, Audi’s chief engineer, Ulrich Hackenberg, explained: “We used a powerful powertrain to position it [The Quattro]. But the potential is to have more volume. It needs a high investment so it makes sense to use other engines.”

Expect to see the Sport Quattro on the roads before 2017.

David Brown logo

Mystery new luxury British sportscar planned

An all-new British company hopes to cause a stir with its first model, dubbed “Project Judi,” which is set to make its international debut in Monaco in April.

Until January this year, no one in the industry had heard of David Brown Automotive, but if the car it is planning is anywhere near as good as the company claims, all of that could change this spring.

David Brown logo

The company wants to be a real alternative to existing luxury British sports cars and has set about recruiting some big hitters, in the form of Land Rover’s former head of design, Alan Mobberley, as well as a host of automotive craftsmen and bespoke suppliers, to realize its goal.

“I wanted all the impact and style of a classic sports car, but with modern capabilities and conveniences. This is what I want in a car, but it’s not something anyone really offers. So, I’ve created it myself.” said David Brown.

David Brown

When a new car company launches from nowhere with promises of sporting prowess and luxury, limited production and bespoke features, it’s usually a recipe for disaster. The more bespoke a car is, the less likely it is to be reliable. The smaller the production run, the smaller the fund for future improvements, research and development.

David Brown Automotive first car

However, what could make David Brown Automotive different is that the company isn’t starting from scratch.

It is using a proven platform for its first car — the Jaguar XKR no less — and adding to and improving it. So the signs look promising.

It means that buyers will be getting a car capable of 0-62mph (100kph) in under five seconds and a wonderful 5-liter supercharged V8 engine.

David Brown Automotive first luxury car

“As reliability is vital, we chose to adopt a thoroughly provenchassis that not only delivers dynamic performance but also lends itself to our lightweight aluminium design. Renowned for its performance and handling, the XKR has been extensively developed and refined by one of the world’s greatest car manufacturers, making it an obvious choice on which to base our car.”

David Brown first car

The company has released a selection of teaser images to whet the appetite before the car is unveiled at the Top Marques Show in Monaco on April 17, 2014.