All posts in “Cars”

New Ferrari Patent Is Intriguing

An interesting patent has come out of the Ferrari wheelhouse: a new engine layout. It has been reported by AutoGuide that they recently uncovered a possible four-cylinder engine for Maranello.

The concept itself isn’t a big deal as lots of vintage Ferraris had four-cylinder racing engines in the past, but it’s the way that it’s designed. Basically, they have an electronic turbine that works to reduce turbo lag and(!) to control exhaust pitch. Now, that’s the intriguing part,

[…] But whereas most exhaust valves operate by being either ‘on’ or ‘off ‘, the turbine wheel allows for greater differentiation in tone. Due to the generator that stores energy away, the engine won’t suffer a dip in performance if the electronic control unit slows the turbine wheel down in order to deliver the desired exhaust tone.

We posted the detailed patent application and it’s quite a read, to say the least. To sum things up, what we’re looking at here could be the next Ferrari four-cylinder or half of a hybrid V8 that has a way of controlling exhaust sound. Let’s see where the future takes us on this one.

It’s complicated: Watch a Bugatti Veyron get a $21,000 oil change

Here’s a fascinating peek under the hood, or rather the rear carbon-fiber engine cover panel and undercarriage, that shows the complexity of getting a simple oil change for a Bugatti Veyron, courtesy of the folks at Royalty Exotic Cars. Servicing this Veyron Mansory Vivere owned by Houston Crosta costs an estimated $21,000. Jiffy Lube, eat your heart out.

How complicated can it be, you ask? Well, the video is 20 minutes long — and that’s with the benefit of plenty of editing to cut out the boring waiting-around and taking-things-apart parts. Crosta estimates the Veyron is held together by nearly 10,000 bolts, and a heck of a lot of them have to be removed.

Changing the oil on one of the supercars starts with needing specialty GoJack car dollies to get underneath and hoist the lowered body high enough to get it on the shop’s lift. Then, you have to remove the wheels on both sides, rear fender and carbon-fiber panel, carbon fiber wheel-well panels, the fuel filler … and on and on and on.

Also, where most modern cars have one or two drain plugs, the Veyron has 16. The mechanics managed to drain 16.5 quarts of oil from the quad-turbocharged 8.0-liter W16 engine.

Rather do it yourself? Well, the mechanics estimate the difficulty of the oil change ranked a 20 on a 1-to-10 scale. At least for the first hour or so, until they managed to pry off the rear panel. Then it went to a 6, they say. “After everything’s taken apart, some of this stuff is just plain and simple super easy,” Crosta says. “But getting everything out to get to this point, that’s a couple-day process.”

Interestingly, Royalty will let you rent out a Veyron Mansory Vivere for almost the same price as the oil change — $20,000 — for 24 hours of fun.

Related Video:

First U.S. McLaren Senna has green carbon fiber body

The McLaren Senna is one of the hottest cars of 2018. Named after one of the greatest racing drivers, the British automaker’s latest and greatest is an immensely fast machine. It certainly looks the part, too, with a giant rear wing, shin walloping front splitter and all manner of other aero aids. Today, McLaren released a batch of images of the first car heading to North America, and it’s finished in one of the most beautiful shades of carbon fiber we’ve ever seen.

Some lucky owner in New York City will be taking delivery of a new Senna with emerald green bare carbon-fiber bodywork and a white-leather interior. The car, like all bespoke McLaren models, was customized through McLaren Special Operations. The car bares the MSO logo on the headrests. Nearly every exterior panel is finished in green. McLaren says the bodywork consists of 67 panels and takes nearly 1,000 hours to produce. Other exterior design touches include blue and red wheel locks and ball-polished wheels.

The Senna is powered by a 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 making 789 horsepower and 550 pound-feet of torque. It can hit 60 mph in just 2.7 seconds and 124 mph in 6.8 seconds. There isn’t much mass to move around thanks to a dry weight of just 2,641 pounds.

Related Video:

Ford to reopen GT application process later this year

Motor Authority has learned Ford will begin taking new applications for the 2019 Ford GT in the fourth quarter of this year. After the Blue Oval extended production to October 2020, this year will be the third out of four years for GT builds. Applicants who haven’t been approved previously are welcome to update their applications, and new customers are welcome to apply.

The survey questions remain the same as at launch. Hopefuls will still need to show their Ford connections and possible Ford collections, and then they can take the optional freeform step of a publicly accessible 60-second video showing “Your Style.” There were a number of videographic gems among the first batch of applicants, when 6,506 people with $450,000 to spend tried to prove they would be the ultimate Ford ambassador.

The carmaker’s sticking to the application schedule even though supplier Multimatic is behind on the overall build schedule. Multimatic needed more time than expected to ramp up to producing one car per day, so instead of the 250 coupes promised for the 2017 model year, Multimatic built 138. Ford said it is committed to the quota of 1,000 units, so delivery times might have shifted a tad, but all deliveries will be made.

It’s expected that the plummy Heritage Edition will introduce a rare, sincere use of the famous Gulf livery. After the black and silver-striped 2017 Heritage Edition celebrated the 1966 GT40 Le Mans winner, the red and white-striped 2018 Heritage Edition celebrated the 1967 GT40 Le Mans winner, deduction would dictate the 2019 Heritage Edition will come dressed in the blue and orange Gulf colors flown by the No. 9 GT40 that won Le Mans in 1968.

For the newly rich who have more funds than followers, you probably have a couple of months before the window opens to blow up your social media accounts and build a pristine collection of Escorts and Probes. A one-way ticket to Kentucky and a paper copy of AutoTrader is probably the best place to start.

Related Video:

Ferrari LaFerrari: Price, Specs, Videos, Images, Performance & More

Introduction

What happens when quite possibly the world’s greatest supercar and hypercar maker sets out to create its greatest model ever?

The Ferrari LaFerrari – that’s what.

Described at launch by company president Luca Di Montezemolo as “the maximum expression of what defines our company,” the LaFerrari was revealed at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show.

Limited to just 499 examples (although since an additional 210 Aperta open-top LaFerraris have been produced), the LaFerrari featured a Formula-One derived HY-KERS system – an electric motor teamed to a 6.3-litre V12. Some would shirk at the concept of a hybrid Ferrari, but while enhanced efficiency is a by-product of the LaFerrari’s powertrain, this was by no means Ferrari’s motivation with the system.

Following in the footsteps of legendary Ferrari halo cars as the 288 GTO, the F40, F50 and Enzo, the LaFerrari had its work cut out from the start. Add to that competition – yes, at this insane level of performance and prestige – from Porsche and McLaren with their hybrid hypercars, the 918 and P1, and this ultimate Ferrari model had a lot to deliver in order to stand out.

Design, Styling & Interior

The overall shape of the LaFerrari – inside and out – is dictated mainly by the car’s carbon fibre tub chassis. Up front, surfaces are kept to a minimum and what is there is minimised to aid aerodynamics, with every strafe and slice in the car’s bodywork having been optimised in the F1 Wind Tunnel. Ferrari sought to produce a shape with the highest degree its efforts have granted the hypercar with a drag coefficient of just 3.

Underneath the car, active aerodynamic features including diffusers and a guide vane team up with the rear spoiler to generate downforce, gluing the LaFerrari to the road or track. These active features are automatically controlled by the car’s computer brain, which analyses various parameters to adjust the systems to work optimally to the conditions.

Inside the LaFerrari, carbon fibre detailing dominates, with the two seats bolted directly to the tub. A bulky squared-off steering wheel greets the driver, with Formula-One inspired LEDs to indicate when to change gear and Ferrari’s now-familiar Mannetino drive mode selector nestled among the various controls on the wheel.

An in-house design team headed up by Flavio Manzoni handled styling for the Ferrari LaFerrari. Inspiration was gathered from the engineering team to ensure a form that reflected the functional elements of the car, as well as taking inspiration from various Ferrari racecars from over the years.

Performance

LaFerrari’s 6.3-litre V12 hybrid power plant produces 950hp (788hp at 6750rpm from the V12 and 160hp courtesy of the electric motor, which delivers the power to the differential). The car’s dry weight is a meagre 1255kg, and on a charge 0-60 is dispatched in under three seconds. Top speed is rated by Ferrari as somewhere north of 217mph.

Figures only tell a part of the story with this car, with the sensations and usability involved in that performance having been prioritised by Ferrari during the car’s development. Despite its obvious track potential the LaFerrari is reputedly fairly comfortable and compliant on the road. Ambling about town, the car’s double clutch automatic gearbox takes the onus of shifting away from the driver, while a surprisingly supple ride cossets the driver, despite the perceived harshness often brought on in vehicles fitted with carbon fibre tubs.

Get it to a track, however, and the LaFerrari will do its thing better than almost any other road car on the planet. Those who questioned the addition of the hybrid powertrain may be surprised to find out its fitment is mainly to help out on the racetrack – with lowered emissions just a byproduct of that.

The HY-KERS system ensures on-demand torque across the rev range, improving throttle response for the driver and making chasing that 9250rpm redline even more addictive.

Ride & Handling

Performance and track capability are almost a given in a car of this caliber, and those the LaFerrari has in cartfuls. Its really surprising party piece are its manners on the road.

Ferrari wanted the car to be usable on the road and its automatic gearbox is sedate and easy to live with around town as these systems go, according to reviews of this scarlet missile.

Visibility is good around the front three-quarters, while the ride quality is as good as you can expect in a hypercar with seats bolted directly to a super-stiff carbon fibre chassis.

Take things up a notch and the LaFerrari provides an involving experience, with the active aero and stability control system working in tandem to flatter the driver. Steering response is smooth and communicative; giving an enjoyable response on the road that also translates well to track driving. Many of the videos we have brought together include footage of LaFerraris in acrobatic tail slides, which the system allows to flourish – to a point.

On track, the LaFerrari impresses further with the full fury of the V12 and HY-KERS systems available to be exploited in a chassis that is more than up to the task. Gearshifts are reputedly so quick as to almost be seamless, and the balance of the package allows the car to simply erupt along straights and flow through corners.

Prices & Specs

If you’re looking for a LaFerrari, it will have to be used as the limited run of 499 hardtops and 210 Aperta open-tops all sold out, despite an initial asking price of around $1,420,000 for the coupe and no official price confirmed for the convertible.

Thanks to the exclusivity of this “ultimate Ferrari” prices have quickly skyrocketed to hilarious levels on the auction circuit, so if considering one then deep pockets and a chequebook long enough to fit at least six zeroes and a digit or two in front are a must.

Ferrari auctioned off the final “new” examples of the Aperta and coupe LaFerrari to benefit charity. The final coupe (car number 500) went for $7 million, in aid of reconstruction in Italy following 2016’s earthquakes.

More recently, the last of the run (210th) Aperta convertible broke records when it went under the hammer at RM Sotheby’s, fetching almost $10 million, with the proceeds of the sale going to Save the Children.

Ferrari LaFerrari Performance & Specs >
< Back To The Beginning

Drivers buy new $300K McLaren 720S, 2019 Chevy Corvette, and wreck ’em

Two high-powered, high-priced sports cars, wrecked in their infancies. No doubt they were fun while they lasted.

In Great Falls, Va., a tony suburb of Washington, D.C., that hugs the Potomac River, someone was out enjoying driving the McLaren 720S they had purchased only the day before on a leafy, two-lane road. Then, horror: In an instant, the car hit a tree, mangled and destroyed “because of speed,” according to the Fairfax County Police Department.

Then on salvage auction site Copart, a brand-new orange 2019 Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport lies in a warehouse in Lincoln, Neb., its front left corner crushed, wheel askew. It had just 15 miles on the odometer. We know nothing of the backstory, except for the obvious front-end damage and secondary damage to the undercarriage. The rear end and 6.2-liter V8 engine, which makes 460 horsepower and 465 pound-feet of torque, look OK. The most current bid as this was published was just north of $9,000.

It’s tempting in both cases to assign the blame to over-eager drivers who weren’t quite yet able to corral all that power. In the case of the McLaren, the supercar makes 710 horsepower and 568 pound-feet of torque from its quad-cam, twin-turbo 4.0-liter V8. It goes from 0-62 miles per hour in 2.9 seconds and boasts a top speed of 212 mph. We’re not saying the unidentified driver was a newbie, but this car is definitely not for newbies.

Police write that the incident is “A reminder to slow down, or it could cost you.” As in, $300,000. Or at least the depreciation for driving it off the lot.

Related Video:

Nio EP9 EV sets its own Goodwood record

The Volkswagen I.D. R wasn’t the only electric vehicle to set a record at the 2018 Goodwood Festival of Speed. Chinese startup Nio showed up with its all-electric EP9, piloted by Peter Dumbreck, for the supercar shootout, and the car made a splash of its own, with a hill climb time of just 44.61 seconds.

While it’s not as quick as the Volkswagen, Nio’s sprint makes it the fastest road-legal car on this course, beating, as Motor Authority notes, the McLaren P1 LM‘s time of 47.07 seconds in 2016. The only modification on the Nio EP9: a set of racing slicks.

This isn’t the first record set by the Chinese electric hypercar. Last year, the Nio EP9 set a record at the Nürburgring, lapping it in just 6:45.90. It’s still the fastest EV at the ‘Ring, and only a small handful of road-legal and race cars have ever done better.

With 1,342 horsepower, a top speed of 194 miles per hour, and can sprint from 0-124 mph in just 7.1 seconds, the EP9 is a beast. It’s priced like it, too, at nearly $1.5 million and a very limited production run. The car is also fast without a human driver controlling it, circling Circuit of the Americas in 2:40.33 with a top speed of 160 mph.

For those who want the Nio name without the crazy price, the company has begun delivering its ES8 electric crossover in China. It’s a bit more reasonable with 644 horsepower and a price tag of about $68,000.

Related Video:

Audi R8 Spyder spied with updated look

Recently, the updated Audi R8 appeared wearing little camouflage and reworked front and rear fascias. Now the Audi R8 Spyder convertible has emerged. It too is wearing minimal coverings and features similar visual updates to the coupe.

Up front, the biggest changes compared with the previous model are in the shape of the grilles. The tallest sides of the main grille have more of a slant, making the front look lower and wider than the old model. This is aided by new outboard grilles that don’t merge with the headlights and also have more slanted sides.

The flanks exhibit virtually no changes, but the tail is significantly revised compared with the old model. There’s now a full width grille below the taillights that’s bifurcated by the license plate alcove. The integrated, rectangular exhaust tips have given way to RS-style oval tips. All of this is effectively the same as the updated coupe we’ve seen. Differing from that coupe are the roadster’s additional grille between the taillights that pokes through the camouflage and the large lip spoiler on the rear deck.

We expect the new Audi R8 will be shown sometime this year, going on sale early in 2019. Rumor has it that it will also be offered with a V6 of some sort. Odds are the V10 will continue to be available, though.

Related Video:

2019 Porsche 911 GT3 RS

Introduction

When automotive enthusiasts are asked to describe the pinnacle of the Porsche 911, the GT3 RS overwhelmingly dominates the conversation.

In terms of outright performance metrics, it slots in below the new GT2 RS in the pecking order. While it may not be Stuttgart’s king of lap times (most notably at Nürburgring Nordschleife), the GT3 RS is still the people’s champion.

The beloved GT3 RS is certainly no slouch at the ‘Ring either, clocking a 6:56.4 minute lap time – just 9 seconds behind the GT2 RS, and 1 second faster than the million dollar Porsche 918 Spyder.

View the official onboard-footage of the lap here

Like its stablemate, the GT3 RS is a rear-engine, rear-wheel drive iteration of the 911; but it is the soul of the GT3 RS – its 4.0L naturally aspirated engine – that is so enthralling and able to cajole even the most cut-and-dried enthusiasts.

The Porsche 911 GT3 RS – through all the admiration it garners – has essentially become Porsche’s brand ambassador and poster child.

Engine & Performance

The GT3 RS is the beneficiary of an upgraded 911 GT3 engine – a 4.0L, naturally aspirated flat-six power plant which revs all the way to 9,000 rpm. This also means that the GT3 RS and GT3 are the last of the non-turbocharged 911s.

The first 911 GT3 RS of the current 991 generation was released in 2015. For MY2019, the GT3 RS (and almost identical GT3) engine receives upgraded pistons and rings, a solid valve train with shims, a stiffer crankshaft, thicker connecting-rod bearings, and plasma-coated cylinder liners.

With updated electronics and a redesigned exhaust system, the GT3 RS produces 520-horsepower @ 8,250 rpm and 346 lb-ft of torque @ 6,000 rpm. As one would expect from a naturally aspirated unit, the engine has instant throttle response and revs as smoothly as it does protractedly.

The GT3 RS continues to employ the 7-speed PDK transmission. Porsche does not offer a manual transmission option for the GT3 RS – although, it is available for the GT3 – given that the intended application of the car is one that is both results-oriented and performance-epitomized.

Porsche claims that the GT3 RS is able to sprint from 0-60 mph in 3.0 seconds, 0-100 mph in 6.7 seconds, and can complete the ¼ mile in 11.0 seconds with a top speed of 193 mph – remarkable for a car that is not assisted by forced induction or electric motors, as is becoming today’s mainstream.

Chassis & Handling

The increase in power is meant to compliment the overall balance of the car, so naturally, there have been improvements made to the chassis as well.

The front struts and rear multi-link suspension utilize metal ball joints, while stiffer spring rates mitigate body roll. With the setup being much closer to a GT3 Cup car than other production 911s, Porsche states that this ensures “accurate, sharp and direct road holding. And for total emotional contact”.

In addition, steering response and feeling have been improved in conjunction with a redesigned rear-wheel steering system, allowing the car to respond instantly and expertly to driver input and direction.

Aluminum six-pot and four-pot brake calipers come standard on all for corners, while Porsche Ceramic Carbon Brakes (PCCB) are optional for those looking to tread at the highest echelon of performance. With either option, pedal feedback remains consistent even after repeated moments of substantial braking Gs, though the PCCB allows for slightly shorter braking distances and more effective trail braking, should the driver be capable and willing.

Specially designed Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires (265/35/20 at the front, 325/30/21 at the rear) raise the performance of the 911 GT3 RS to the next level – as road legal tires, they allow the driver to enjoy the car on both the street and track.

For the first time, optional tires developed specifically for race track are available for the GT3 RS. While they are also road legal, they are even more performance oriented and should really only be used at the circuit.

An optional hydraulic lift system on the front axle lifts the front bumper by 30mm, allowing the driver to negotiate curbs, ramps, and entrances seen in the real world.

Design, Styling & Interior

Like the turbocharged GT2 RS, the GT3 RS is also based on the extra-wide body of the 911 Turbo S. Minimum drag, maximum downforce, optimum cooling – all in great abundance and meticulous in detail.

The GT3 RS utilizes the same NACA ducts on the bonnet as seen on the GT2RS, which are used to help cool the braking system without reducing the drag coefficient by efficiently channeling air throughout the body. Large front fender vents assist in ventilating pressure from the rotating wheels.

The aerodynamic front bumper ensures optimum cooling and airflow into the radiator while providing massive downforce over the front axle. In conjunction with the huge carbon fiber rear wing and redesigned underbody panels and diffuser, the GT3 RS is able to generate 100% more downforce at 124 mph compared to the ‘standard’ GT3.

Thanks to the implementation of weight reduction measures wherever possible, the GT3 RS weighs in at 3,150 lbs – a noticeable 377 lbs lighter than the Turbo S that it is built upon, and 91 lbs lighter than its RS counterpart.

For those opting for a more hardcore diet, the Weissach package is available for an additional $18,000 USD. The package – which amongst a host of things, replaces the standard magnesium roof and anti-roll bars with a carbon fiber – also unlocks the option to purchase magnesium wheels for $13,000 USD on top of it.

Pricing

The GT3 RS is priced in a somewhat interesting fashion. While its pedigree is undoubtedly the same class as the turbocharged GT2 RS, it is surprisingly (to me, anyway) priced nowhere near it, and is only about $40,000 USD more than a GT3.

The base price of the GT3 RS is $188,550 USD, with the optional Weissach package and magnesium wheels bringing the total to $219,550 USD when included.

This means that the base price is over $100K USD less than the base price of the GT2 RS ($294,250 USD).

Many wondering if this makes the GT3 RS a direct competitor to the GT2 RS; it does, in a way, but not really. Afterall, the GT2 RS was made to be the rarer of the two iterations and will have no issues selling out. I try to refrain bringing up the GT2 RS so much (honestly!), but this is difficult to avoid in the context of commentating about the GT3 RS – and you can see why.

Its significantly lower price point makes it all the more alluring if it wasn’t already so even with the pricing not part of the debate. This at the very the least, means that the GT3 RS could very well be considered a bargain compared to its competition, even for those obsessed with lap times and technical specifications.

Performance & Specifications Summary

Model & Price Info

Make Porsche
Model 911
Generation 991 (2012-Present)
Sub-Model GT3 RS
Car type Coupe
Category Series Production Car
Built At Stuttgart, Germany
Released At Geneva International Motor Show
Introduced 2015
Base Price (US) $188,550
Base Price (UK) £131,296
Units built TBD

Body, Suspension & Powertrain

Curb Weight 1,430 kg (3,153 lbs)
Layout Rear-engine, rear-wheel drive
Body / Frame Aluminum-steel composite monocoque, carbon fiber elements
Suspension (F) MacPherson strut suspension with lightweight springs (including helper springs), anti-roll bar, fully ball-jointed mountings
Suspension (R) Multi-link axle with lightweight springs (including helper springs), anti-roll bar, fully ball-jointed mountings
Engine Flat-6
Position Boxer, 90°
Aspiration Naturally Aspirated
Block Material Aluminum block and heads
Valvetrain DOHC, 24-Valve (4 Valves per Cylinder) with VVT & VarioCam Plus
Fuel Feed Direct Fuel Injection
Displacement (Litres) 4.0L
Displacement (in³) 244 in³, 4000 cc
Transmission 7-speed DCT with automatic and manual shifting mode (PDK)

Engine & Output

Power (hp) 520 hp @ 8,250 rpm
Power (hp) / litre 130 hp / litre
Power (hp) / weight 0.36 hp / kg
Torque 346 lb-ft @ 6,000 rpm
Average Fuel Consumption 17 mpg

Performance & Acceleration Stats

Top speed 311 km/h
0 – 60 mph 2.9 s
0 – 100 km/h 3.1 s
0 – 160 km/h 6.9 s
0 – 200 km/h 10.9 s
0 – 240 km/h 16.9 s
1/4 mile 10.7 s @ 127.3 mph
1000 m 20.2 s @ 160.0 mph
100 – 0 km/h 31 m (102 ft)
200 – 0 km/h 117 m (384 ft)
18 m slalom 76.5 km/h
36 m slalom 148.0 km/h
Nürburgring Lap Time 6:56.4 (Driver: Kevin Estre)

Image Gallery

Aggressive, but ceaseless in its functionality. The GT3 RS silhouette is an outstanding display of aerodynamics, cooling efficiency and lightweight design. Whether it be the large rear spoiler, front fender vents, or antagonistic front bumper, the GT3 RS is all about the showmanship, but with the attributes to back it up.

In my opinion, the GT3 RS looks the part and looks even better playing it – form and function, at the highest level.

Video Review Gallery

Here are some YouTube video reviews from some of my favorite car reviewers and auto personalities. All of them provide feedback from an “everyday guy” perspective – but aren’t afraid to thrash the car around a racetrack when given the opportunity – providing commentary that is both technical and easy to absorb.

First up is Matt Prior from Autocar, taking the GT3 RS through the paces in its natural habitat – the race track. He immediately notes that the GT3 RS is more than just a naturally aspirated GT2 RS – its 9,000 rpm redline, brilliantly balanced chassis and cohesive entirety giving the car its own unique merits.

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Next, is a popular YouTuber and Autotrader reviewer, Doug DeMuro providing commentary on what he describes as “the craziest 911 of all time”.

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It’s always important to see what an accomplished professional racer can do with a car like the GT3 RS on a race track. This Car TV video provides onboard footage of two-time World Rally champion Walter Rohrl as he completes a hot lap with meticulous precision, technique, and coolness.

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Last but not least, is Porsche’s official onboard footage of driver Kevin Estre’s blistering 6:56.4 lap time achieved at the benchmark test of all road-approved sports cars – the Nürburgring Nordschleife.

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Original Press Release

Born from Racing: The New 2019 Porsche 911 GT3 RS

World premiere of the most powerful naturally aspirated series-production 911 ever

Atlanta

The Porsche motorsport department is presenting Weissach’s latest treat at the Geneva Motor Show: the 2019 911 GT3 RS with a race-bred chassis and a high-revving four-liter, naturally aspirated engine producing 520 horsepower and 346 lb.-ft. of torque.

Based on the 911 GT3, the RS has been refined even further, combining the most powerful naturally aspirated engine ever fitted to a road-legal 911 with a suspension that features recalibrated rear axle steering tuned for maximum dynamics and precision.

The new 911 GT3 RS accelerates from 0 to 60 mph in 3.0 seconds, which is 0.2 seconds quicker than the current 911 GT3 with PDK and 0.1 seconds quicker than the previous 911 GT3 RS. Top track speed of the 2019 911 GT3 RS is 193 mph. Following the launch of the 2018 911 GT3 and the 2018 911 GT2 RS, the new 911 GT3 RS represents the third road-legal GT model to be unveiled within a year.

Race-inspired aerodynamics and lightweight construction

Aerodynamics and lightweight construction have determined the design of the wide, weight-optimized body with its classic fixed rear wing. Like on the 2018 911 GT3, the front and rear fascia are made of lightweight polyurethane. Additionally, the front trunk lid and fenders on the 911 GT3 RS are made of carbon fiber and the roof consists of magnesium.

Like on the 2018 911 GT2 RS, NACA ducts in the front trunk lid optimize brake cooling without increasing drag. The front fascia features a spoiler lip that is larger than on the previous model, increasing downforce in conjunction with the larger side skirts. At the rear, the large wing mounted on the carbon fiber deck lid works in combination with a rear underbody diffuser. The result: The 2019 911 GT3 RS produces more than twice as much downforce as the regular 911 GT3 at 124 mph.

The race-inspired appearance continues in the interior: Full Bucket Seats with carbon fiber reinforced backrests provide a high degree of lateral support to suit the vehicle’s exceptional level of lateral grip. Lightweight glass for the rear window and rear side windows, lightweight door panels with door opening loops, reduced sound insulation, and the omission of rear seats emphasize the consistency of the material choices and the dedication to saving weight. The Alcantara steering wheel measuring 360 mm in diameter features a yellow 12 o’clock center marker.

The most powerful naturally aspirated engine in a road-legal 911 ever

The four-liter, naturally aspirated flat-six engine from Porsche in the new 911 GT3 RS pushes the sports car to new limits: It delivers 20 horsepower more than the engine in the 2016 911 GT3 RS and the current 911 GT3. Plasma coated cylinder liners, a central oil supply through the crankshaft with larger bearing diameters, larger connecting rod bearings and the rigid valve train with shims to provide valve clearance compensation all carry over from the 2018 911 GT3.

Capable of up to 9,000 rpm like the regular 911 GT3, the thoroughbred engine takes in ram air through openings in the rear quarter panels, and it is closely related to the unit used in current Porsche 911 race cars. The unmistakable flat-six sound escapes the exhaust tips, which are made of titanium like the muffler itself. The engine is mated to a specifically tuned seven-speed PDK, which features performance-oriented gearing with the top track speed being reached in seventh gear like all GT tuned PDK transmissions.

Race-bred chassis

Technology derived from motorsport ensures that the chassis offers exceptional driving dynamics. Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM), active engine mounts, rear axle steering, and the fully variable electronic locking rear differential with Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus (PTV+) are standard. Ball joints on all suspension links provide even greater precision than conventional bearings with rubber bushings. Furthermore, the new 911 GT3 RS features new helper springs at the front axle, in addition to the rear.

As is customary for a Porsche GT model, the ride height, toe, camber, caster and sway bar settings of the suspension can be adjusted to suit individual driver preferences. Forged lightweight wheels measuring 9.5 x 20 inches in diameter with newly developed 265/35 ultra-high performance (UHP) tires enhance agility and steering precision, while 12.5 x 21-inch wheels with 325/30 UHP tires mounted at the rear deliver excellent traction.

Overall, the wider tires offer a significantly larger contact patch than those of the regular 911 GT3. Large cross-drilled grey cast iron rotors measuring 380 mm front and rear are standard, while the Porsche Ceramic Composite Brake system with 410 mm rotors at the front and 390 mm rotors at the rear can be ordered as an option. The ceramic rotors weigh around 50 percent less than the cast-iron variants.

Optional Weissach package and magnesium wheels for extra weight savings

For particularly spirited drivers, the Porsche motorsport department has created an optional Weissach package to reduce the weight of the car even further. With this package, the front and rear sway bars and coupling rods, vehicle roof, steering wheel trim, and shift paddles on the steering wheel are all made of carbon fiber, reducing the weight by roughly 13 pounds.

Optional forged magnesium wheels, weighing around 25 pounds less than the standard wheels, are available as well in conjunction with the Weissach package. When equipped with these options, the weight of the 911 GT3 RS drops to 3,153 pounds.

Pricing and availability

The new 2019 911 GT3 RS is available to order now and is expected to reach U.S. dealers in fall 2018. The MSRP is $187,500, not including available options or the $1,050 delivery, processing, and handling fee. The Weissach Package is available for $18,000. The magnesium wheels can be ordered for an additional $13,000 in conjunction with the Weissach Package and will be available at a later date.

Final Verdict

As my fellow Supercars.net colleague, Nick Dellis once remarked, “The world is full of armchair commentators when it comes to cars. At Supercars.net we have a number of journalists and automotive publications we rely on when we want to get unbiased opinions from people we admire.”

Below are snippets from some of our favorite car reviewers and automotive personalities regarding the GT3 RS. As always, we ask that you support the amazing publications they release, so that the automotive community continues to benefit from the hard work and enthusiasm they put into providing us with content that we love.

Autocar – “Yes, power is wonderful. But lightness is better.” – 5/5

Matt Prior from Autocar believes that there is no coupe from any other manufacturer that can “…deliver more interaction, more mechanical feel and greater responsiveness than a GT3 RS…”

Naturally, a comparison to the GT2 RS is made, where Matt notes that “While I don’t think the 3 communicates any better than a 2, the messages it does transmit are superior: you can feel that it’s lighter, more willing to turn, easier and more satisfying to ease onto the throttle and keep it pinned. It’s why this car is only a few seconds slower than a 2RS around the Nürburgring Nordschleife despite being almost 200bhp down.”

He goes on to summarize that “And in the form of the GT3 RS it goes into creating – little by little, detail by detail – what might just be the best driver’s car currently on sale.”

The Good

  • Phenomenal feedback, easy to control at limit
  • Lightweight feel, ease of “turn-in”
  • Purposeful aerodynamic design elements
  • 9,000 rpm redline

The Bad

More: Read full review

Top Gear – “It is deeply, deeply fast and massively, massively exciting to use.” – 10/10

Ollie Marriage from Top Gear is a big fan of the GT3 RS’ engine. “Magnificent.”, he proclaims. But of course, it doesn’t stop there.

When asked how the engine blends with the chassis, Ollie replies, “In an almost celestial way. Everything feels sharper, and yet so immaculately precise to use. This makes the process of squeezing more power on while unwinding the steering, for instance, so symbiotic that some extra-sensory spark sends tingles around your body.”

Ultimately he is also in the school of thought that the GT3 is the more quintessential Porsche 911 – “For me, the toughest rival comes from within – the GT3 RS. Given a straight choice, I think I’d still go for the nat asp GT3, although that would mean foregoing the mad turbo headbang…”

The Good

  • Magnificent engine
  • Front end grip levels
  • Connection with chassis, accurate and precise steering

The Bad

  • Could possibly be lighter
  • Suspension changes would make daily driving difficult

More: Read full review

Car And Driver – “As always, massively capable and massively noticeable” – 5/5

“This is a track-day destroyer. Its cornering grip is, well, massive,” exclaims Daniel Pund from Car and Driver.

In his praise of the GT3 RS chassis, he goes on to state that “The car feels like it could handle a lot more than 520 horsepower. That’s because it can. It’s essentially the same vehicle as the turbocharged 700-hp GT2 RS. We suppose there are probably circumstances in which you’d really appreciate the extra 180 horsepower, but believe us when we tell you that 520 is plenty in this car on public roads. Plenty.

The Good

  • Braking and perfect pedal feel
  • Fantastic high-revving engine
  • Brilliant chassis
  • More than $100,000 less than a GT2 RS

The Bad

  • Manual transmission offering would be nice
  • Extroverted looks might not be for everyone

More: Read full review


My Final Verdict – 10/10

The new Porsche 911 GT3 RS is not the fastest 911 by any standard of measure that matters. However, by those same standards, it is also no slouch of a car, with a Nurburgring lap time just seconds off the pace of the production car record set by Porsche’s own GT2 RS.

But perhaps what truly matters is that the GT3 RS represents everything that is great about Porsche’s historic flagship car. It offers a cornucopia of pure unadulterated driving sensations; in no small part due to its unique naturally aspirated engine that screams to 9,000 rpm, which is as much art as it is technological marvel.

You feel a connection with the car as if it is an extension of your own thoughts. The grip, the steering feedback, the pedal feel, the responsiveness; engineering ingenuity in every detail. The GT3 RS is proof that a little bit of nostalgia and a whole lot of innovation can mix well together, at least when concocted by Porsche.

The overall appeal of the GT3 RS also stems from the notion that it is more relatable and relatively attainable – its much lower price point and higher production numbers than the GT2 RS, particularly setting it apart from its linemate.

The GT3 RS is Porsche’s most talismanic figure in its vast and comprehensive 911 roster. It is the first name on the team sheet, and the one everyone looks to for inspiration

Rivals

Lamborghini Huracan Performante
Ferrari 488 Pista
Ford GT
McLaren 720S
Porsche 911 GT3 RS

McLaren to go full hybrid by 2025 as part of plan for 18 new models and derivatives

A few months ago, McLaren Automotive CEO Mike Flewitt provided some insight on the future lineup at the English carmaker. He told Autocar we could expect the next generation of sportscars to feature hybrid powertrains and some measure of self-driving capability. In comments this weekend at the Goodwood Festival of Speed, Flewitt appears to expand on and clarify a few aspects from the earlier report, based on updates to the company’s business plan. First, instead of the earlier report that the Super Series and Sports Series would go all by hybrid by 2022, that won’t actually be complete until 2025.

As with the ubiquitous 3.8-liter V8, a single hybrid powertrain will come in different outputs in different models. Flewitt wouldn’t confirm whether the hybrid would be based around a V6. He did say, however, that the system is “designed… to have more differentiation than we have had out of the current package,” and performance variety would come from tweaking the electric portion of the powerplant, not the ICE. He didn’t expand on that point, but that could mean a wider range of driving characteristics within each series, or a greater power spread between series’, or both. The carmaker’s working on batteries that can do 30 minutes of track use, suggesting a potent pack with a high degree of tunability.

The 2025 deadline for hybridization could be due to a rollout of 18 new models and derivatives. Right now, McLaren makes six cars, five in the entry-tier Sports Series, the lone 720S in the Super Series; we don’t count the Senna because it’s sold out. Even overhauling the entire lineup, and counting the BP23 and the P1 successor in 2025, that still leaves ten new and offshoot models in the next seven years. Whatever they are, they’ll help McLaren reach its increased target of 6,000 sales a year by 2025.

Flewitt also took the chance to swap the word “autonomy” for “augmentation” when speaking of future driver assistance technology. In the Autocar report, the CEO said the lineup would need autonomous features “designed in for safety, legislation, and emissions.” At Goodwood, he recast the driver aids as “‘augmentation’ technology,'” the focus on helping the driver be better behind the wheel instead of taking the wheel for him. “Imagine,” said COO Jens Ludman, “having a virtual coach who could show you how to improve on a track.”

Related Video:

This 1975 Vintage Fiat Campagnola Is Basically an Italian Land Rover Defender

Editor’s Note: We love scouring the internet for reasons to spend money we don’t have on cars we daydream about owning, and these are our picks this week. All prices listed are bid amounts at the time of publishing.

Every major car-making country seems to have its own bare-bones, iconic off-roader. America has the Willys Jeep. Great Britain has the Defender. Germany has the G-Wagen. Japan has the Land Cruiser. It turns out, Italy has its own little off-roader — the Fiat Campagnola — and you probably didn’t even know about it.

The Campagnola first arrived in 1951, and was, like many of the aforementioned off-roaders, inspired by the Willys. It was cheap, it was simpl, and it has a humble 53-horsepower engine and selectable all-wheel drive; it became a staple both on the civilian and used markets within various Italian government agencies. Shortly after its debut, a Campagnola traveled across Africa from Cape Town to Algiers in one day, four hours and 54 minutes, setting a record that, according to FCA, still hasn’t been broken.

In 1973, the truck was redesigned and re-launched as the Nuevo Campagnola, and that’s the vehicle you see here for sale today. It grew in size, received a bigger engine (an inline-four that still made only around 80 horsepower) housed in a large, square engine bay that not only makes repairs easier but allows the truck to wade to depths up to 27 inches (a Defender, for reference, can wade up to 20 inches). Supposedly, the interior became a bit more comfortable and refined, but we all know the result is still a rugged, stupidly-simple off-roader. There isn’t even a glove box in there. There are, however, a couple of jump-style seats in the back, which means you can take six of your friends into the backwoods with this bad boy.

Thus, the Campagnola is up there with the ranks of those other iconic off-roaders regarding sheer utility and off-roading prowess. We love sheer utility and off-roading prowess. And there’s also an element of obscurity and authenticity to the Campagnola that’s alluring. Every trendy urban enclave is stuffed with Defenders, G-Wagens and Land Cruisers which have become little more than status symbols for the weekend warrior. The Campagnola, on the other hand, was mostly kept in its home market (and sold mainly to farmers and Government agencies) which means you’re very unlikely to see another on the road.

Which should make this clean example on Bring a Trailer a tempting proposition if you’re looking for a unique but capable little off-roader. As of writing, the car is at $9,000 with a few more days to go. It’ll assuredly see more bids before the auction closes, but at the rate it’s going, it’ll probably still sell for less than a comparable Land Rover or G-Wagen.

New Nissan GT-R aims to be ‘fastest super sports car in the world’

The automotive press has spent five years hypothesizing about the next-generation Nissan GT-R, and the prognostications won’t stop soon. Autocar spoke to Nissan head designer Alfonso Albaisa, who revealed that the design team hasn’t yet begun working on the car in earnest because the powertrain isn’t decided. There’ll be a new platform, and there are exterior sketches, but until the internals get locked in, the shell remains a mystery. The most important consideration, Albaisa said, is that the next GT-R be “the fastest super sports car in the world.”

How will the GT-R achieve that? The designer would only say the new coupe would “play the advanced technology game,” adding, though, that said game didn’t necessarily mean hybridization. It’s possible Godzilla could omit an electric motor. However, we’d be shocked if that happened when the primary competition — the Porsche 911 and even the C8 Chevrolet Corvette — have hybrid options planned or rumored over the lifecycles of their next-gen models, and super sports cars like Lamborghini and Ferrari are already confirmed for hybrid conversion.

Years ago, during the dark days of the LMP1 GT-R LM NISMO, sabers rattled about the next GT-R getting some version of the 3.0-liter V6 in the race car, and assumed electric assistance. Former Nissan EVP Andy Palmer said there was the “very real prospect of enhancements coming from [the race car] and ending up on a sports car like the Nissan GT-R,” and, “I’d expect to see some form of hybridization on the next generation of car.” The design would be a toned-down version of the 2020 Vision Gran Turismo, and power would stand at around 786 horsepower and 737 pound-feet of torque, shifting through a new eight-speed dual-clutch. But the race car died an awful death, Palmer’s now the head man at Aston Martin, and the Vision Gran Turismo never left the video game.

Even more confounding, Albaisa’s comments make it sound like the new GT-R might need to overcome its own bodywork on its way to being “the quickest car of its kind” and owning the track. The new coupe won’t shrink from its heavyweight stance, with Albaisa saying the visual mass and “audacity” will need to communicate that “It’s an animal; it has to be imposing and excessive.” We should expect a cohesive design that does its aero work without a lot of extra appendages. Said the designer, “It’s the world’s fastest brick, really. And when I review sketches for the new car, I say that a lot: ‘Less wing, more brick.'”

A 2016 report from Autoevolution ties into Albaisa’s comments. We were told not to expect major weight loss, with GT-R father-figure Kazutoshi Mizuno suggesting in interviews that the coupe’s corpulence “ensures a correct level of handling for all customers.”

So all we think we know now is that we’ll get 2+2 seating, a twin-turbo V6 in front, a transaxle layout, and an all-wheel-drive powertrain. And based on this latest insight, and what the competition’s doing, we can probably expect a healthy price increase for the standard model whenever it finally gets here.

Related Video:

The Most Hated BMW M3 Is Your Best Bet at Affordable German Performance

Editor’s Note: We love scouring the internet for reasons to spend money we don’t have on cars we daydream about owning, and these are our picks this week. All prices listed are bid amounts at the time of publishing.

It’s widely known that of all the BMW M3 generations the first — the E30 — is the most beloved. The E46 (third generation) isn’t far behind; it’s followed by the fourth, then probably the fifth. What is incredibly clear, if you couldn’t tell from the glaring omission, is the second generation M3 (E36) is the black sheep of the family. Despite being faster and more powerful than the E30, the follow-up generation seemed tame by comparison. There were no flared wheel arches, the interior and its materials looked and felt downmarket. The E36 was seen as a way to make the M3 more affordable and more viable for BMW.

Whether that was BMW’s real motive and intention is arguable. What is accepted as fact is that the E36 carried one of the best handling chassis of the decade. The interior might draw out some critics, but if you’re driving this car like it was meant to be driven, you won’t be focusing on the interior. This 1997 BMW M3 certainly has some faults all its own; regardless, this might be your best bet at affordable German performance.

What We Like: Right out of the gate, conceding this particular M3 was in an accident is important. The airbags were deployed, but the damaged front bumper, fenders, headlamps, grille, radiator and air conditioning condenser were all replaced. And it should also be noted even though there are only 63,000 miles on this example, the previous owner tracked the car regularly. “The seller recommends replacement of both rear tires due to wear,” in the description should say it all. Now, with those caveats out of the way, as considerable as they may be, if you don’t treat this car like it’s destined for a blue ribbon at a car show (because it isn’t), you’ll thoroughly enjoy your time in it.

Being the M3 known for looking and feeling a little less upscale than all the other M3s, the E36 should be driven and driven often. In the same way an old off-roader with dents, scratches and other beauty marks is always going to be the more fun car because you don’t care as much, this E36 is the sports car equivalent. Yes, it has faults, but don’t we all?

From the Seller: “This 1997 BMW M3 is finished in Estoril Blue with a Modena leather interior and powered by an S52 inline-six displacing 3.2 liters and mated to a five-speed manual gearbox. Modifications include adjustable Koni shocks and struts, Hawk brake pads, polyurethane bushings and more. Service in the last three years included accident repair and replacement of suspension, cooling and steering components as well as a new battery, fluids, and alignment.”

Watch Out For: The main annoyance with an M3 of this vintage isn’t really any single repair cost getting too expensive (although replacement catalytic converters can list for over $5,000), but a lot of little things adding up. Power steering hoses are a popular candidate for failure and tend to leak on E36 M3s, but those are relatively simple and cheap to replace.

Original Review: “From as low as 2500 rpm, our vivid Dakar-yellow M3 pulled like a turbo car all the way to its engine limiter at 6800 rpm or 6500 rpm, depending on which gear it was in. The engine-management system gives you 6800 in the first two gears, then 6500 in the next two, with a 137 mph cutoff in top. Exactly why our car curtails its rush toward what is surely a 145-to-150-mph top speed is beyond our understanding, although the safety watchdogs are probably scandalized by the 137-mph figure anyway.” — Car and Driver

Alternatives: There should be no surprise here. The rivalry BMW has with Mercedes and Audi is almost as old as time (in car-years, at least). In 1997 Mercedes touted its 302-horsepower, V8-powered C43 AMG against the BMW, but also the Audi RS4 with its 240-horsepower V6 mated to Quattro AWD.

Engine: 3.2-Liter S52 inline-Six
Transmission: five-speed manual
Location: Long Island City, New York
Mileage: 63,000
Price When New: $36,642

The 32 Best Car Features Ever: Exposed Gear Levers and $160K Clocks and More

When automotive designers and engineers get together and put forward the best they have to offer, cult followings and icon statuses just come naturally. For era-defining cars, influences from highway safety rules and crash protection regulations play just as big of a part in the final product as culture and societal trends.

If global warming wasn’t a thing and if fossil fuels weren’t going the way of, well, the dinosaurs, the Tesla Model S might not have even been a scribble on a napkin, let alone the seismic shock to the auto industry it’s become. Had it not been for the flash and excess of the ’80s, we might never have seen the V12 Ferrari Testarossa or Lamborghini Countach 5000 QV. But what these cars make us feel and think of when we hear them wailing their way towards their redline or simply sitting quietly in a parking lot is a product of all the little things that make up the big picture.

Some of the best automotive details come from form following function or vice versa, from exercises in excess and/or minimalism. Some serve no purpose whatsoever, but the car wouldn’t be the same without. Regardless of their initial intention, these are our 32 favorite car quirks of all.

Ferrari Testarossa Side Intakes

Testarossa-Vents-Gear-Patrol
As big as they were, the Testarossa’s gills were completely functional. The massive intakes and long strakes served to organize turbulent air and use it to cool radiators and channel hot air through vents in the engine lid, creating downforce, and thus negating the use of a massive spoiler. Form and function, hand in hand.

Spyker C8 Exposed Gear Lever

Spyker-Gear-SHift-Gear-Patrol
Seeing the mechanical linkage of the shifter exposed is like looking into a grandfather clock. It’s absolutely mesmerizing to see that sort of precise engineering at work.

Porsche 930 ‘Slantnose’ Whale Tale

Porsche-Whale-Tail-Gear-Patrol
It might have been more of a necessity on Porsche’s part to keep drivers from consistently coming out of turns the wrong way forward, but damn it if it doesn’t suit the 930’s powerful personality to a T.

F50 Transparent Rear End

Ferrari-F50-Gear-Patrol
It’s almost a forbidden feeling catching a glimpse of the F50’s mesh rear end — like you weren’t supposed to see that glorious V12, but you can’t look away.

Pagani Zonda R Exhaust + Exhaust Note

Pagani-Zonda-Exhaust-Gear-Patrol
A Mercedes-AMG hand-built V12 mated to Pagani’s even-length exhaust headers and stacked quad pipes would put the current F1 grid to shame in a sound comparison.

Koenigsegg CCX Dihedral Doors

koenigsegg-ccx-doors-gear-patrol
The CCX dihedral doors only serve to highlight Christian von Koenigsegg’s delightfully mad way of going about simple functions.

LFA Tachometer

Lexus-LFA-Dash-Gear-Patrol
The only way Lexus could get the tachometer to keep pace with the speed with which its V10 could rev was to go digital.

Volkswagen Phaeton Trunk Hinges

Phaeton-Hinges-Gear-Patrol
There’s something to be said for beautifully milled and wonderfully complex trunk hinges on a Volkswagen.

Bentley Bentayga Breitling Mulliner Tourbillon

Bentley-Bentayga-Gear-Patorl
The world’s most expensive in-car clock ($160,000) in the world’s most expensive SUV ($250,000) creates a wonderful exercise in excess.

Original Mini Exterior Weld Seams

P90045991
Putting the weld seams on the outside meant Mini didn’t have to fit the welding machine in the car during assembly, meaning they could build the Mini even smaller. Brilliant.

Jaguar XJ220 Hidden Headlights

XJ220-Lights-Gear-Patrol
When pop-up headlights were regrettably being phased out, the drop-down shields of the XJ220 made for a worthy continuation of the concept.

Bugatti Type 57 SC Atlantic Suicide Doors

Bugtti-57c-Gear-Patrol
Picking one aspect to highlight from the Bugatti Type 57 is a herculean task, but the way the suicide doors open up — as if they are welcoming you into its warm embrace — may be the most beautiful detail of all.

Jaguar D-Type Speed Hump

Jaguar-D-Type-Gear-Patrol
The spiritual connection to Jag’s storied Le Mans racer just oozes legendary performance and panache.

Alfa Romeo Grille

Alfa-Grille-Gear-Patrol
Most cars on the road today have some sort of rectangular cop-out for a grille, but that’s because few cars have the style and elegance required to sport one like Alfa Romeo’s signature fascia.

Porsche 918 Top Exit Twin Exhaust

918-Exhaust-Gear-Patrol
It had to be done to make sure the engine and hybrid system could fit in the 918 and still be low enough not to compromise the handling or design. But when fire starts spitting out of the the twin exhausts, you can’t help but applaud Porsche for “going green.”

Bugatti Chiron Side Intake

Bugatti-Chirion-Gear-Patrol
Very rarely do a concept car’s lines make it to the production model; when the side intake mimics the company founder’s signature, it deserves recognition.

BMW i8 Laser Headlights (EU only)

BMW-i8-Laser-Lights-Gear-Patrol
The design alone makes every other headlight on the road look like a gaslight lantern.

Porsche Targa Top

911-Targa-Gear-Patorl
Simply put, it’s the better way to do a convertible.

Aston Martin Vulcan Tail Lights

Aston-Martain-Vulcain-Gear-Patrol
Like nothing else on the road. In fact, you’d have to be aboard the Millennium Falcon at light speed with stars streaming by to see anything similar.

Mercedes 6×6 Third Axle

Mercedes-Benz G63 AMG 6x6 Showcar, Dubai 2013
The only way to describe it: necessarily unnecessary.

2016 Ford GT Rear Quarter

Ford-GT-Gear-Patrol
Between the separated intakes, massive flying buttress and the tail light doubling as a hot air extractor, the GT’s butt comes together as one fantastic piece of design.

Alfa Romeo TZ3 Zagato Cam Tail

Alfa-Zagato-Gear-Patrol
One of Zagato’s signature design elements incorporated into one of the most beautiful cars of the modern era.

BMW M4 GTS Roll Cage

BMW-GTS-Rollcage-Gear-Patrol
Roll cages in road cars usually seem out of place, no matter the performance or intentions of the vehicle. But the M4 GTS’s copper webbing of high-strength protection looks like a work of art.

Audi A4 Clamshell Hood

Dynamic photo, Colour: in crystal effect paint finish Ara Blue
Hood shut lines can make or break a car’s design, so for a mass-production car like the new A4 to receive the extra attention and engineering to hide the necessary surface break is commendable by all accounts.

Porsche GT3 RS Fender Vents

GT3-RS-Vents-Gear-Patrol
Usually when vents are put on cars for performance gains, they stick out like the dorsal fin on a sailfish. But the new GT3 RS fender vents sit just below the body panel surface as a subtle call to performance rather than an obnoxious aerodynamic catcall.

Lamborghini Aventador Ignition

Aventador-Gear-Patrol
Unleashing 700+ horsepower with the flip of a switch that looks at home on an F-22 Raptor just makes sense.

Citroen DS Steering Wheel

Citroen-DS-Gear-Patrol
Absurd. Ridiculous. Unbelievably stylish. All the reasons we love Citroen.

Shelby Cobra 427 Side Pipes

Shelby-Side-Pipes-Gear-Patrol
When there’s a 7.0-liter engine shoehorned into a car barely big enough for two people, anything other than side-mounted exhausts would be doing it a disservice.

Porsche Carrera Beechwood Shifter

Carrera-GT-Gear-Patrol
It’s an homage to the Porsche 917 race car, which is fitting for the Carrera GT considering its V10 may have started life as F1 engine development project.

Audi Virtual Cockpit

Audi-Virtual-Cockpit-Gear-Patrol
In an age where infotainment systems stick out of otherwise well-designed dashboards like technological afterthoughts, Audi’s virtual cockpit gets the job done and with a stunning, customizable display.

Tesla Model 3’s Front End

Model-3-Fascia-Gear-Patrol
With Tesla’s “skateboard” battery pack, Elon Musk could have made the Tesla Model 3 look any way he wanted. By completely removing the grille from a car that will undoubtedly sell well, Tesla is deliberately challenging the status quo of car design.

Ferrari 599 Gated Shifter

599-GTB-Manual-Gear-Patrol
As it’s the last analog manual V12 Ferrari ever built, we’re glad Maranello decided not to cover up its beautiful simplicity with a leather boot.

Noble M500 revealed with reported 550 horsepower

Goodwood Festival of Speed has hosted a number of public debuts of sports cars, from the Nissan GT-R50 to the Toyota Supra. We knew those were coming, though. What we weren’t expecting was for little British company Noble to show off a brand-new sports car called the Noble M500.

It’s certainly a handsome-looking car, and it’s not as brutal as the the M600, a car that is all flat planes, sharp corners and protruding air scoops. This is a more organic design, and everything looks better integrated — though it does risk looking more generic than the M600. Another fun detail: It appears to have the headlights from the C7 Corvette. They work surprisingly well on the Noble.

As the company says in its tweet, the M500 is not a replacement for the M600, but rather a more entry-level, approachable complement to the 660-horsepower, twin-turbo V8 monster. That’s not to say the M500 will be slow, though. According to Autocar, the M500 has a 550-horsepower version of the twin-turbocharged V6 Ford uses in the Ford GT. The news outlet goes on to say the engine will be attached to a dual-clutch transmission, and the whole body will be made from fiberglass. We expect to have more photos and details on the car in the near future.

Related Video:

1963 Aston Martin DP215

Monterey, California is the place to be on 24-25 August, if you want to witness the auction of a truly legendary race car–the 1963 Aston Martin DP215 Grand Touring Competition Prototype. One of four ever built, this is the first vehicle in history to officially break the 300 km/h (186 mph) barrier at the famous Le Mans competition.

Touted as the most significant one-off Works Aston Martin, the DP215 boasts a build quality that’s superior to virtually any other competition car of the period.

The stunner shown here has been painstakingly restored with the consultation of Tedd Cutting, the original designer. As a result, the vehicle comes in its glory-days condition, including the perfectly-shaped body crafted from high-strength Hiduminium alloy, original seats, and rebuilt Indianapolis Cooper-Aston 4.2L V8 engine paired with a sophisticated S532-type gearbox that contains over 1000 parts!

Looking toward a fresh start, this exceptional piece of Aston Martin racing heritage clocks in at only 300 miles on the odometer and is said to run as comfortable at 40 mph as it does at 180 mph-plus. Expected to fetch north of $20 Million.

Learn More From RM Sotheby’s

Photos Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

BF Goodrich Mud-Terrain T/A KM3 Tire Review: Makes Any Truck the King of the Mountain

I

I was already awake when the first light of day crept through the strategically opened blackout curtains. Without ambient natural light, there is no waking me until my body is good and ready. However, on this particular trip, there was no need for my tactical curtain placement. Given what the next 12 hours were going to be like, it’s a wonder I slept at all. I was about to be helicoptered out to drive one of the toughest sections of the legendary off-road playground that is The Rubicon Trail.

We had been assembled to get an idea of what the new BF Goodrich Mud-Terrain T/A KM3 off-road tire was like, not to test our mettle on the Rubicon. But in hindsight, I’m pretty sure the folks at BF Goodrich enjoyed the idea of putting a bunch of journalists through the wringer just as much as they enjoyed the idea of launching a new tire — especially when mounted to contemporary, modified Jeep Wranglers and classic Land Rover Defenders we were provided.

Slapping one of 54 different sizes of KM3s on your vehicle won’t make it unstoppable and they won’t magically imbue you with talent on the trail. What they will do is give you a sizable cushion for error which is about as much as any driver, amateur or professional can ask for — something I found out firsthand in a variety of off-roaders supplemented by the new, badass-looking rubber.

I started the drive behind the wheel of 1994 Land Rover Defender 90 that had been properly modified by The 4×4 Center in South Burlington, VT (who also brought their Bond-esque remote satellite communications Defender so we could have WiFi in the middle of nowhere). Since my experience with rock crawling was basically non-existent prior to this experience, I was fully relying on the equipment and the team of guides to keep me from banging vehicles around the trail like a teenager hopped up on Code Red. The steady burble of the V8 from the custom exhaust comforted me as we rolled out onto the trail — my guide in the right seat explained that “patience is key with this vehicle.”

Fortunately, as technical as rock crawling is, I could also rely on driving senses that I’ve developed plenty of over the years driving on trails in the woods of New England and on sand dunes. The same principles — being smooth with all your inputs and making deliberate decisions — apply to rock crawling, so with those basic instincts in place and the KM3 to assist me, I managed to not make an ass of myself.

By the time I moved into a highly modified JK Wrangler, I was listening to the radio, one hand on the wheel, the other resting on the window frame just cruising along. Make no mistake, it was challenging, but in an exciting way, never stressful. You arrive at an obstacle, make a plan with the guides and execute it as best you can. The ebb and flow of rock crawling isn’t for someone who enjoys the sensation of immense speed. I found myself enamored with watching a tire sidewall flex as it slowly rolled over razor-sharp rock at a ridiculous angle. Still, the sense of accomplishment that I got upon receiving a thumbs up or “well done” from a guide after navigating a climb or descent was equal to any solid lap time result I’ve turned in at the track.

Slapping one of 54 different sizes of KM3s on your vehicle won’t make it unstoppable — what they will do is give you a sizable cushion for error.

Just before lunch, thankfully, I rode along in the passenger seat of an Ultra 4 vehicle to go for a ride with one of their pro drivers. You know the way a child picks up a Hot Wheels and holds it semi-airborne while moving it over any obstacles? That’s essentially what an Ultra 4 does. I have heard my fair share of incredible exhaust notes over the years, but nothing like the unrestricted hellacious growl that came from these things. The only reason I wasn’t laughing like a madman the entire ride was because I didn’t want to bite my damn tongue off. We scrambled up and down rock faces with such ease that I began to wonder what these things can’t do. A quick scroll through YouTube will show the answer is, not much.

Following the adventure on the Rubicon I drove a Tacoma TRD-Pro from Tahoe back home to Los Angeles and found, surprisingly, that the KM3 is a good road tire too. Not only is it far quieter than you would ever expect, even at highway cruising speeds, it also hangs onto a paved corner respectably and doesn’t have any frightening amount of “squish” when braking under duress. In short, for those that need to drive a fair distance to enjoy off-road playtime, getting there won’t be a miserable affair. This is a product that gives the consumer the best of both worlds.

BFGoodroch KM3 Specs (Manufacturer Claims)
5% Better Mud Traction
8% Better Rock Traction
27% Tougher Sidewalls

Bugatti Divo will be a $5.8 million hypercar with an appetite for corners

Too much is never enough, especially when you’re talking about Bugatti supercars. The Divo is the next step in Bugatti’s continuing history of building the most covetable vehicles on the planet. Based on the existing 1,479 horsepower Chiron, the Divo is intended to be lighter in weight and significantly quicker around corners. Oh yes, and it’s almost massively expensive, with a starting price of approximately $5.8 million. If you want one, hurry up, because only 40 will be produced.

“Happiness is not around the corner. It is the corner. The Divo is made for corners,” says Stephan Winkelmann, President of Bugatti Automobiles S.A.S. “With the Divo, we want to thrill people throughout the world. With this project, the Bugatti team has an opportunity to interpret the brand DNA in terms of agile, nimble handling in a significantly more performance-oriented way.”

Little to no details have been released about the Divo ahead of its official introduction this August at Monterey Car Week. The powertrain will likely be carryover from the Chiron, which means the quad-turbocharged W12 will be there in all its decadent glory. The body could be significantly different, however, in keeping with Bugatti’s promise that the car has been honed to go around corners at physics-defying speed.

As for the name, it might conjure up images of a certain 1970s-80s band, but the Divo is named after Albert Divo, a French racing driver who twice won the Targa Florio while piloting a Bugatti race machine.

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Experiencing a Supercar Isn’t As Expensive As You Think

For car enthusiasts, there might be no greater experience than owning a supercar. It could be that you have always dreamed of owning a particular make and have had posters on your bedroom wall from your youth, dreaming of the day that you could sit behind the wheel. Alternatively, you may have developed a love for supercars later in life and now want the ultimate experience that driving has to offer.

But it can be easy to be put off supercar ownership by the fact that it is expensive. Detractors point to the initial cost of the car, as well as insurance and regular maintenance, not to mention running costs, which would appear to make it exorbitant to own a supercar. However, you might be surprised to learn that owning a supercar is not as draining for your bank balance as you think.

The opportunity to try a car

Not everyone who wants to get behind the wheel of a supercar also wants to own it on a day-to-day basis. It might simply be the case that you would be happy with simply the occasional few hours in the driver’s seat. And after all, roads have the same speed limits for supercars as they do for every other car, and if the thrill that you are looking for comes from taking a car up to high speeds, then you might even just be satisfied with a supercar experience day.

You can look at supercar experiences two ways. Firstly, they can be a relatively cheap and easy way to the experience the best of what a supercar has to offer. You won’t be committing yourself to one specific car and can give multiple different models a try. Secondly, however, you can consider your experience day as a test run before you commit to ownership. Buying a supercar won’t come cheap so it can be best to know that you are choosing the right one.

An alternative to buying

If you are committed to owning a supercar and enjoying it on a day-to-day basis, then you might be looking into the prices and wondering how you can afford the initial outlay necessary to own. But it is actually the case that you can drive a supercar without having to buy one. Leasing has become a very popular alternative to outright car ownership, with simple monthly payments and a fixed term often being preferable.

Many buyers assume that it is only possible to lease more affordable cars, but if you look at the top of the market you can find it is possible to lease high-end sports cars and supercars such as the Porsche 911, the Audi R8, and even various Ferraris. With predictable repayments and the financial future of your car planned out, this can be a very affordable way to drive a supercar.

A supercar as an investment

Naturally, the price of a supercar can be extremely high but sometimes it is a case of how your frame that price. Remember that a supercar will not depreciate at the same rate as a normal road car – in fact in some cases if you buy the right model, a supercar will actually gain value. You can’t count on this being the case, but it is often possible to recoup a lot of your initial expense when you come to sell.

You need to think of your supercar as an investment. This starts with doing your research into which model you are going to buy as some will depreciate faster than others. Additionally, you need to ensure that you take care of your supercar correctly. Keeping the car in good condition will pay dividends in the long-term.

Built to last

It is also worth pointing out that supercars are built to be able to withstand the rigors of demanding use at very high speed. This means that all of the parts used in construction are of exceptional quality. Given that these cars are not often used at these sorts of speeds you can enjoy the benefits of their quality in the fact that they will last for a long time. This means that while supercars will still require maintenance, you are likely to have fewer problems, especially if you don’t constantly push it to its limits.