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Goodwood Festival of Speed 2019 – Celebrating Motorsport’s Record Breakers

We’re seasoned Goodwood veterans at this stage. GTspirit has covered the Festival of Speed for as long as I can remember. Quite possibly the greatest celebration of performance machinery in Europe, if not the world, it never gets old. This year’s event was themed “Speed Kings”. It was all about celebrating the biggest names in motorsport; the record breakers.

For those of you unfamiliar with the Goodwood setup, let us enlighten you. Goodwood Circuit (which is not where the Festival of Speed is held) began life as the perimeter track of RAF Westhampnett airfield. When World War II was over, the circuit began to be used extensively for motor racing. Some of the biggest names raced there between 1948 and 1966 when it officially closed.

The Festival of Speed takes place less than a mile away from the Goodwood Circuit. It was founded in 1993 by Lord March and plays on the heritage of the Circuit on a less competitive level. The centrepiece is a hill climb which winds its way from the front of the house to the top of the hill. The course is 1.86 km long and is shared by a huge variety of vehicles, Formula 1 racers, Le Mans cars, Drift cars and Rally cars.

What’s more, the event incorporates a Concours, a Forest Rally Stage and the release of brand new machinery!

This year’s event saw some notable new releases. Mercedes-AMG took the opportunity to launch the Mercedes-AMG A 45. Ford released a new track-only version of the Ford GT. De Tomaso stole the show with a stunning new concept car.

Alongside the new releases, we also got an opportunity to see some of the most iconic race cars. Our unanimous favourite? The V10 engined Ferrari Formula 1 cars driven by Michael Schumacher, one of the best known “Speed Kings”. Goodwood dedicated an entire category to the 50-year-old racer. Cars such as his Formula Ford 1600, Van-Diemen-Ford RF88, his Jordan-Ford 191 and his Benetton-Ford B191; the cars he cut his teeth on before moving to the prancing horse.

Schumacher wasn’t the only person to receive a celebration. March Engineering turned 50 this year, it had its own category, Mercedes celebrated 125 years in competition and it was Bentley’s centenary year. Then there was Aston Martin. Celebrating 70 years since its Goodwood Circuit debut, the British company paid for the centrepiece which sat at the front of the house.

One of the most popular categories was dedicated to the Porsche 917. It first raced 50 years ago. Goodwood’s collection of 12 examples represents one of the largest 917 gatherings in history. We even saw the famous Porsche 917K chassis 030 which was converted for road use by the infamous Count Gregorio Rossi di Montelera.

Away from the hill climb, the Concours d’Elegance drew big crowds. Seven categories displayed some of the most iconic cars of all time. Two categories stuck out. The “Cent Ans d’Avant Garde”, celebrating Avions Voisin’s 100th anniversary with a collection of quirky pre-war cars. The second was the “Like Father, Like Son” category celebrating “The Genius of Jean Bugatti”.

The former category was won by the stunning 1936 C28 Aerosport, while the latter won by the 1937 Type 57 SC Atalante. The overall winner of Best in Show was an Abarth 250 Monza.

The biggest news over the course of the weekend came from Volkswagen. The German brand had re-geared its Volkswagen ID.R race car specifically for the event. It made no secret of the fact that it wished to take the hill climb record. The time it had to beat was a 41.1 second run set 20 years ago by Nick Heidfeld in a McLaren MP4/13. Romain Dumas shaved 1.7 seconds, setting a new record time of 39.9 seconds. There was a feeling it could have gone faster but for the rain which disrupted Sunday’s timed shoot out.

De Tomaso P72 rebirth livens up the Goodwood Festival of Speed

A De Tomaso re-launch has two presumed starting points: Either a Pantera, the original automaker’s most popular model, or a crossover, because of the days we live in. When De Tomaso brand owners Consolidated Ideal TeamVentures (CIT) began promoting their effort earlier this year, they did so with what looked like a camouflaged Pantera. Yet execs said they spent years studying Alejandro de Tomaso’s history, vision, and products and spoke of making a much deeper impact than merely recycling a classic. They have proved their point at the Goodwood Festival of Speed with De Tomaso’s first new product, the P72. It’s the modern incarnation of a car CIT didn’t know existed before they bought the brand, the De Tomaso P70.

It’s likely hardly anyone beyond De Tomaso historians remembers the P70 (Car Design News has an excellent two-part story on it). In 1964, Carroll Shelby wanted to develop a race car to take on the big boys for the Can-Am series launching in 1966. Peter Brock had designed a car, Shelby had financing, the Texan only looking for a chassis and someone who could turn his Cobra’s 4.7-liter V8 into a lightweight, bored-and-stroked 7.0-liter. He called De Tomaso, who was working on his first road car and a 7.0-liter V8. The two men agreed to collaborate, but things didn’t go well. As the project fell behind and Shelby grew wary about De Tomaso’s interpretation of the design, and about timely delivery of the promised engine and five cars, he sent Brock to Italy to oversee the project. This offended De Tomaso, and the partnership dissolved soon after. Shelby’s withdrawal — he began working on the GT40 project — angered De Tomaso enough to finish the P70 with help from Ghia. The Argentine showed the car at the 1965 Turin Motor Show as the Ghia-De Tomaso Sport 5000, and reworked the chassis to serve his Mangusta road car.

Whereas the Apollo IE pays homages to the GT1 era from the mid-1990s, the “modern-day time machine” P72 celebrates the sixtieth anniversary of De Tomaso and the prototype racing era in the sixties. In the original vehicle, the P stood for Prototipi, the 70 stood for the expected 7.0-liter engine. The P represents the same today, but 72 stands for the number to be built. A small number, but multiples larger than the ten Apollo IEs headed for climate-controlled garages.

We mention Apollo because the same all-carbon chassis from the Apollo IE underpins the P72. Jowyn Wong, the man behind the Apollo’s design, penned the P72’s Le Man’s body and that captivating, wide open rear end. The interior looks like a moody dalliance between Spyker and Pagani, full of polished copper, diamond motifs on the stitched leather, on the shift knob above the exposed linkage, and the pedals, plus golden lighting. A row of analogue dials bespeaks the past and the future, the circular theme capped outside by the small round side mirrors.

The carmaker’s finalizing the specs, and hasn’t said what will power the final version. The Apollo IE uses a naturally-aspirated Ferrari-sourced V12, but based on De Tomaso’s history with V8s, don’t be surprised by a free-breathing and burly eight-cylinder. Pricing is expected to be around 750,000 euros ($842,000 U.S.). That’s a reasonable sum given the prices of low-volume custom vehicles today, exemplifying the last of De Tomaso’s six core tenets: Heritage, Passion, Racing, European Design, and World-Class Performance at Extreme Value. The company is taking deposits now, and with Miller Motorcars on board as a U.S. dealer, don’t be surprised to see the P72 here — at least, in photos — one day.

Watch the McLaren GT Do a Run at the Goodwood Festival of Speed

Beautiful Sights and Sounds

The McLaren GT made its debut at the Goodwood Festival of Speed. This gorgeous grand touring car features a strong 4.0-liter V8 that makes 612 hp and 465 lb-ft of torque. The car is able to utilize that power on the course at Goodwood for all to see. In the video included below, you’ll see and hear the car move through the course. It’s one of McLaren’s most elegant-looking cars ever, and the engine note is something wonderful to behold. 

One of the reasons the GT sounds so good is because it has a bespoke exhaust system. While the engine itself isn’t all that different from the one found in other McLarens, the new exhaust gives it a distinctive and unique sound. This is exactly what you want from a supercar. 

The GT also stands out from the rest of the McLaren lineup because it’s a straight up bigger car. The mid-engine vehicle is longer than any other McLaren. The car also has more luggage space than any other car, meaning it can be used as an everyday car. That doesn’t keep it from being fast, though. This car can do a 0-60 mph sprint in just over three seconds. It’ll do all the way up to 124 mph in just nine seconds. The top speed is 203 mph. You can view the GT getting down at Goodwood in the video below. 

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Singer Vehicle Design Marks 10 Years in Business with Celebration at Goodwood

Yep, Singer Is a Decade Old Now

Singer Vehicle Design has been thrilling motoring enthusiasts everywhere for 10 years. The company is known for taking old Porsches, restoring them and then modifying them with extreme attention to detail. To help mark the 10-year milestone, the company will bring two cars to the Goodwood Festival of Speed

The company will bring the Dynamics and Lightweighting Study (DLS). The car was built in connection with Williams Advanced Engineering. Since the time that Singer debuted the car, it has continued testing and modifying it. According to EVO Magazine, Singer said the car has been “much abused.” The DLS will appear in a new red livery.

The company will also bring the Sussex commission to Goodwood. This car is a little more typical for the company. This car is used as a daily driver and track driven by the owner. The car will come in the Attack Grey color and feature ghosted stripes and lettering. 

According to EVO, the company has a new car called the Mulholland commission. That car will unfortunately not be shown at Goodwood. If you can’t make it to Goodwood, head to the Monterey Car Week in California in August where Singer will also showcase cars. 

De Tomaso Re-Born During 60th Anniversary Year – Debut at Goodwood!

Italian supercar manufacturer De Tomaso is set to make a return later this year at the Goodwood Festival of Speed 2019. The Italian brand went into administration in 2005. Several attempts have been made to re-launch the brand since, however, these have failed to materialise. The latest re-launch follows the purchase of the rights in the De Tomaso brand by Ideal Team Ventures.

Ideal Team Ventures are the company behind the re-birth of Apollo Automobil. They have some experience in re-launching defunct supercar brands! The company appears to be financed by Hong Kong businessman Sung Fung Choi and lawyer, Neil Baylis who was formally involved with the re-launch of the AC Cars brand.

De Tomaso has some serious history behind it. The company was founded in 1959 by the Argentine-born Alejandro de Tomaso. De Tomaso was a race car driver, competing for two years in Formula 1 with Scuderia Ferrari and OSCA. The company he founded would later go on to produce cars like the Mangusta and the iconic Pantera.

The company attempted to re-launch in 2009 when it was bought by Gian Mario Rossignolo. That venture ended in disaster after Rossignolo and his son were convicted in Italy of fraud and embezzlement having failed to produce a single customer car.

The company has been re-born during its 60th anniversary year with the latest model set to debut at the Goodwood Motor Show 2019. It is code-named Project P for the time being and the story will unfold over coming months using the hashtage #DTprojectP. We will bring you further information as and when we know more!

Goodwood 2019 Theme: Speed Kings – Motorsport’s Record Breakers

Goodwood have announced the theme to this year’s Festival of Speed. The event normally carries a loose theme, focusing some of the entrant vehicles and displays. This year it will be “Speed Kings – Motorsport’s Record Breakers”. The theme has a thinly veiled goal too.

The Festival of Speed has established itself as the biggest U.K. car event and a destination for the release of the biggest performance cars. In recent years we have seen the release of new Aston Martin’s, Mercedes-Benz and BMW’s. This year we expect just as much excitement!

The theme this year has the 20th anniversary of the hill climb record in mind. If you’ve been to the event before you will have seen Nick Heidfeld’s fantastic 41.6 second run at the wheel of a McLaren MP4/13. The Volkswagen I.D. R Pikes Peak car came very close to toppling that time last year, yet the McLaren remains the fastest. By setting such a theme, Goodwood have made their intentions clear.

Away from the hill, Goodwood have announced that there will be changes to some of the attractions at the event this year. Details will be released over the coming months in the run up to the event.

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.

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Nissan and Italdesign will build 50 GT-R50s

We’ve got some good and bad news for Nissan GT-R fans. The good news is that stunning Nissan GT-R50 designed by Nissan and Italdesign won’t just be a fancy one-off concept. The companies are prepared to build 50 units of the sports car, provided it’s received well at its public debut at the Goodwood Festival of Speed. The bad news of course is that there will only be 50 examples of this amazing car.

It’s also going to be eye-wateringly expensive. While a top-rung 2018 Nissan GT-R Nismo starts at $177,185, the GT-R50 will cost an estimated 900,000 euros. At current exchange rates, that’s about $1,060,000. For some additional perspective, that’s more than a McLaren Senna, which comes in just under the $1,000,000 mark.

But this is a seriously exclusive GT-R that marks the important 50th anniversary of the model, and that of Italdesign. It also features radically different styling from a typical GT-R, and each one will be customized to the buyer’s taste. Not only that, but the forged internals, race car turbochargers, upgraded suspension and brakes all ensure this 710-horsepower GT-R is the best performing version of the car to come from Nissan directly. Well, at least the best performing one, so far.

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