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Archive for the ‘cool fast cars’ Category

PostHeaderIcon Video of the Day: What it Took for One Man to Attain His Dream Cars


PostHeaderIcon Wallpaper of the Day: McLaren 570GT Sport Pack

2018 McLaren 570GT


Wallpaper of the Day: McLaren 570GT Sport Pack - image 757586

Wallpaper of the Day: McLaren 570GT Sport Pack - image 757587

Wallpaper of the Day: McLaren 570GT Sport Pack - image 757588

Check out the latest on the McLaren 570GT Sport Pack

Want to Know More?

McLaren 570


2017 McLaren 570GT - image 677573

Read our full review on the 2017 McLaren 570GT.


2016 McLaren 570S Coupe - image 651280

Read our full review on the 2016 McLaren 570S.

PostHeaderIcon Wallpaper Selections of the Day: 2018 Lotus Evora GT410

2018 Lotus Evora GT410


Wallpaper Selections of the Day: 2018 Lotus Evora GT410 - image 757671

Wallpaper Selections of the Day: 2018 Lotus Evora GT410 - image 757672

Wallpaper Selections of the Day: 2018 Lotus Evora GT410 - image 757674

Wallpaper Selections of the Day: 2018 Lotus Evora GT410 - image 757678

Wallpaper Selections of the Day: 2018 Lotus Evora GT410 - image 757679

Read the Latest on the 2018 Lotus Evora GT410 or get up to speed on the 2017 Lotus Evoa Sport 410

Want to Know More?

Lotus Evora


2016 Lotus Evora 400 - image 617787

Read our full review on the 2016 Lotus Evora 400.


2017 Lotus Evora Sport 410 - image 667203

Read our full review on the 2017 Lotus Evora 410.


2017 Lotus Evora GT430 - image 724277

Read our full review on the 2017 Lotus Evora GT430.

PostHeaderIcon Wallpaper Selection of the Day: 1993 McLaren F1

1993 McLaren F1


Wallpaper Selection of the Day: 1993 McLaren F1 - image 674550

Read our full review of the 1993 McLaren F1 or check out the gallery below for more wallpapers of this iconic beauty!

PostHeaderIcon ATS GT

Race-spec seats

Revived in 2012, almost 50 years after it was originally established in Italy, ATS, short for Automobili Turismo e Sport, returned to the market with a couple of open-cockpit, race-inspired sports cars. These prototype-style vehicles were followed by the Leggera roadster in 2015, but not much happened since then. Now, ATS is making a new comeback to the market, this time around with a potent supercar that promises to give Ferrari and Lamborghinis a run for their money. It’s called the ATS GT and pays tribute to ATS first road car, the 2500 GT, launched all the way back in 1964.

If you haven’t heard of ATS before, it was established in 1963 by former Ferrari employees Carlo Chiti and Giotto Bizzarrini after the “great walkout” of 1961, when Maranello lost some of its most valuable engineers. ATS was established as both an automobile constructor and a Formula One race team, but it survived for only two years. Its only road car, the 2500 GTS, wasn’t exactly successful either, but it remained in history as the second mid-engined sports car ever produced. Come 2017 and ATS is trying to recapture its former glory with the GT, a supercar that employs state of the art technology, a premium interior, and a powerful engine. It’s also the first ATS to join the small niche of exclusive supercars with high price tags and limited production runs.

Continue reading to find out more about the ATS GT.

Exterior

  • Tribute to original 2500 GTS
  • Modern design with muscular lines
  • Race-inspired engine hood
  • State-of-the-art aerodynamics
  • Dynamic rear wing

2018 ATS GT - image 743152
“The new ATS GT was designed as a modern take on the 1964 ATS 2500 GTS”

The new ATS GT was designed as a modern take on the 1964 ATS 2500 GTS, but it’s by no means a neo-retro interpretation. While the headlamps, the overall shape of the body, and the mid-engined configuration do remind of the classic model, the new GT is as fresh and unique as they get. The front fascia revolves around the modern standard for sports cars. There’s a sloping hood that descents abruptly toward the nose, the swept-back headlamps are set at the corner of the fenders, while the bumper is made of large air intakes and a race-inspired diffuser. The twin stripe on the hood reminds me a bit of special-edition Ferraris from recent years, but given that ATS is an Italian company, I’m not surprised to see it there.

The GT’s profile is an attractive combination of organic, muscular lines and sharp cues. The beltline starts low at the base of the side mirror, and then ascends abruptly toward the quarter windows to meet with the line that defines the sexy rear haunches. The quarter window itself sports a unique design, with a wide B-pillar element turning it into a thin stripe. Speaking of stripes, the door and the quarter window are highlighted by a red stripe, which also surrounds the main window. The same red accents decorate the multi-spoke wheels.


2018 ATS GT - image 743147
“The profile is an attractive combination of organic, muscular lines and sharp cues”

The rear fascia is as vintage as they get. Much like sports and race cars from the 1960s, the fascia itself is very narrow and sunken into the fender and spoiler extensions. It’s also flanked by round taillights, yet another cue that was highly popular 50 years ago. Of course, the lights are modern and feature LED technology. They’re also hollow in the middle, which makes them look like small jet engines. The area between the fascia and the diffuser is a massive grille and a V-shaped black element, both adding aggressiveness.

The engine hood is also inspired by vintage race cars. Instead of the glass cover we see on modern sports cars, the hood features two vertical grilles on each side and a black element that also acts as an air vent in the middle. A deployable wing looks ready to pop out when needed.

Interior

  • Nubuck leather upholstery
  • Carbon-fiber trim
  • Race-spec seats
  • High-quality fit and finish
  • Premium appointments
  • Simple dash layout
  • Modern display

2018 ATS GT - image 743156
“The cabin that's both modern and sporty, featuring Nubuck leather and carbon-fiber trim”

ATS didn’t have much to say about the GT’s interior, but the photos show a cabin that’s both modern and sporty. The first thing that catches the eye is the enormous amount of Nubuck leather that covers nearly every surface, including the dashboard, steering wheel, door panels, and the seats. The soft material is combined with glossy carbon-fiber inserts and aluminum.

The dashboard design is very simple and straightforward. Unlike most supercars that have instrument clusters mounted underneath deep hoods, the GT sports a nearly flat screen that’s rounded around the edges. Two smaller displays are placed atop the center stack, which includes a wider, thin screen in the middle, three buttons below, and three more rectangular gauges above. The center console is also pretty simple and features carbon-fiber sides and a small gearshift lever.


2018 ATS GT - image 743160
“The seats have contrast stitching, red piping, and highly detailed "ATS" logos on their headrests”

The seats have contrast stitching, red piping, and highly detailed “ATS” logos on their headrests. More red detailing is visible on the door panels. The headliner is also made of grey Alcantara with red stitching. Overall, the ATS GT isn’t as luxurious as a Bugatti Chiron, but it has that classic vibe combined with modern features. That’s a win in my book.

Unfortunately, ATS didn’t say what kind of technology customers will get in this car, but it’s safe to assume that it won’t have too many gadgets. If you want the latest gadgets, you can always go with an Aston Martin.

Drivetrain

  • Twin-turbo V-8
  • Up to 700 horsepower
  • Up to 553 pound-feet of torque
  • Seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox
  • Brembo carbon-ceramic brakes
  • 0 to 60 mph in three seconds
  • Top speed of 206 mph

2018 ATS GT - image 743148
“The V-8 engine generates up to 700 horsepower and 553 pound-feet of torque”

The drivetrain under the hood is also modern. Whereas the old ATS 2500 GTS was powered by a naturally aspirated, 2.5-liter V-8, the new GT uses a twin-turbo, 3.8-liter V-8 unit. Output is rated at a whopping 650 horsepower and 500 pound-feet of torque. If that’s not enough for the drag racer in you, ATS offers a 700-horsepower and 553-pound-feet version too. The Italian firm says that the engine is built with “abundant use of composite materials” and “state of the art technological solutions.” Unfortunately, there’s no additional information to run by, so all this state-of-the-art stuff remains a mystery until further notice.

But at least ATS said that the engine pairs to a seven-speed transmission and comes with three driving modes, Viaggio, Sport, and Corsa. Each of them change the dynamic behavior of the car from a somewhat comfortable grand tourer to a full-fledged race car. As usual, each mode acts on the suspension’s set-up, gearshift speed, and on the engine’s power output. Sprinting from 0 to 60 mph takes three seconds, which puts the ATS GT in a similar league to the Ferrari 488 GTB and the Lamborghini Huracan. Top speed is rated at “more than 206 mph,” again on par with the Italian competition. Stopping power comes from carbon-ceramic breaks from Brembo, the best on the market right now.

Prices


2018 ATS GT - image 743157

Specific pricing for the ATS GT isn’t yet available, but the Italian firm wants in excess of £1 million for the supercar. That’s a fortune even when compared to Ferrari and Lamborghini sports cars, but it’s a result of the vehicles exclusivity due to production being limited to only 12 units. This number is identical to the production of the original ATS 2500 GTS.

Competition

Ferrari 488 GTB


2016 Ferrari 488 GTB - image 615039

Designed to replace the 458 Italia, the 488 GTB is already one of the most iconic modern sports cars out there. Combining design features from the 458 Italia, the LaFerrari, and newer styling cues, the 488 GTB is decidedly aggressive to look at but still boasts that classy Italian flair. The Ferrari is just as luxurious on the inside, with leather, Alcantara, and carbon-fiber covering just about any surface. Under the hood, it sports a recently introduced 3.9-liter V-8 engine. The twin-turbo unit cranks out 660 horsepower and 560 pound-feet of torque and uses a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission to send the 488 GTB flying from 0 to 60 mph in three seconds flat. Top speed is rated at 205 mph. Pricing for the Ferrari starts from $242,737, only a fraction of what ATS wants for the GT.

Read our full story on the 2017 Ferrari 488 GTB.

Lamborghini Huracan


2015 - 2016 Lamborghini Huracán LP 610-4 - image 674398

Also a mid-engined supercar, the Huracan sports an entirely different design philosophy. Unlike the Ferrari and the ATS, both of which sport organic styling cues, the Huracan’s body is made mostly of sharp lines, a trademark for Lamborghini supercars since the Countach. The Lambo feels extreme on the inside too, but it also carries an impressive amount of premium features, especially in terms of materials and technology. The Huracan is quite different under the hood too. While Ferrari and ATS use turbocharged V-8 engines, Lambo remained true to its already iconic V-10. The naturally aspirated 5.2-liter mill generates 610 horsepower and 413 pound-feet, enabling the coupe to hit 60 mph in 3.2 seconds. Top speed is rated at 201 mph. The Huracan is the slowest and least powerful of the pack, but it’s also the most affordable at $237,000 before options.

Read our full review of the 2017 Lamborghini Huracan.

McLaren 720S


2018 McLaren 720S - image 708563

Launched for the 2018 model year, the 720S is the newest supercar here. It replaced the 650S and introduced a new design language for the company’s Super Series line. And it looks pretty wild compared to the 488 GTB and Huracan. Inside, the McLaren boasts more carbon-fiber than anything else available from the Italian carmakers. Leather and Alcantara are visible on just about any surface, while the Folding Drive Display turns it into a no-nonsense race car at the track. Power comes from a twin-turbo, 4.0-liter V-8 that cranks out 710 horsepower and 568 pound-feet, making the 720S the most powerful of the bunch. It’s also the quickest, needing only 2.8 seconds to hit 60 mph from a standing start. With a top speed of 212 mph, it’s also the fastest. And if you are looking for the lightest alternative, you should know that the 720S fits the bill at 2,828 pounds. Pricing starts at $288,845.

Read our full story on the 2018 McLaren 720S.

Conclusion


2018 ATS GT - image 743154

The ATS GT is a somewhat surprising release. Although the Italian company has been active for the past few years and launched a series of open cockpit sports cars, the GT is its first coupe sports car since the original 2500 GTS. ATS had a previous attempt with the Leggera back in 2015, but the roadster was more of an affordable vehicle that’s than a supercar aimed at Ferraris and Lamborghinis. In many ways, the GT brings ATS into a new era with a vehicle that looks and sounds promising. However, it remains to be seen whether it will make an impact, especially with a price tag that blows past the $1 million mark with ease.

  • Leave it
    • * Awfully expensive
    • * No match for the McLaren 720S

PostHeaderIcon McLaren Senna

2019 McLaren Senna

A successful race car builder from the 1960s to the 1980s, McLaren began making a name for itself as a road car manufacturer in the early 1990s with the F1. Launched with many benchmarks, including the first carbon-fiber construction, the F1 became one of the most iconic supercars ever made. It was so great that it took McLaren 15 years to gives us a predecessor, the P1, introduced at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show. Four years have passed, and the McLaren Ultimate Series is entering a new era with a brand-new supercar. Codenamed the P15 and in the rumor mill for a couple of years now, the McLaren Senna was unveiled on December 9, 2017, as the company’s ultimate road-legal race car.

A unique design that brings together styling cues from the P1, 720S, and new aerodynamic features, the Senna bears the name of F1 driver Ayrton Senna, who drove McLaren Formula One cars for six years, from 1988 to 1993.

While the Senna’s aggressive design and aerodynamics aren’t surprising, the fact that it’s not a hybrid comes as a bit of shock. With its predecessor sporting an electric motor, the new Ultimate Series was expected to have a similar layout. The same goes for the interior, which has a standard left-hand-drive configuration, despite prototypes that have a mid-mounted driver’s seat, like the old F1. But this doesn’t make the Senna a less spectacular supercar. On the contrary!

Continue reading to learn more
about the McLaren Senna.

Official video

Exterior

  • Radical design
  • Extreme aerodynamics
  • 720S- and P1-inspired features
  • Carbon-fiber body panels
  • Two-piece diffuser
  • Huge rear wing

2019 McLaren Senna - image 752215
“The organic styling cues, the teardrop shape, and the massive rear wing put the Senna in a league of its own”

It’s basically impossible to describe a car like this with one work, but if I were forced to do it, I’d use “extreme.” Actually, make that “extreme!!!” Granted, the P1 and the 720S are also pretty extreme styling-wise, but the Senna just takes things to a new level. Its organic styling cues, the teardrop shape, and the massive rear wing put it in a league of its own.

The front fascia is a significant departure from previous McLaren designs, not so much in aesthetics as in aerodynamics. There are a few recognizable features, like the split hood from the P1 (but in a more aggressive form here) and the slim headlamps carved into the body. But everything else is new. The nose is more angular, and the intake underneath is bigger. The vents under each headlamp make it seem as if the nose simply floats above the splitter.


2019 McLaren Senna - image 752224
“It's pretty much an open wheeler design with full fenders and a closed cockpit”

Things become more extreme onto the sides. Whereas previous McLaren’s had a rather traditional design with the body becoming increasingly wider toward the rear, the Senna is narrowed between the front and rear fenders. The shape is somewhat similar to Formula One and IndyCar vehicles, with the wide side skirts acting like side pods. It’s pretty much an open wheeler design with full fenders and a closed cockpit. The design may seem radical, but it has nothing to do with styling. Everything was conceived in the wind tunnel. When seen from above, the Senna has a teardrop shape, and all the components seem clipped onto the cabin. The narrower center section also helps with cooling, having enabled McLaren to fit massive vents into the rear fenders and the side skirts.

Around back, the Senna has nothing in common with previous McLarens. While both the P1 and 720S have organic designs with lots of flowing lines, the Senna’s rear fascia is all about horizontal features. The deck is pretty flat too, as is the upper side of the diffuser, which sticks out a few good inches from the body. The rear fenders also have a unique design, raising above the decklid to create to create an aerodynamically optimized area. The fenders are backed by prominent gurney flaps that direct air away from the rear deck. The exhaust pipes are placed on the decklid too, facing upward, yet another unique design.


2019 McLaren Senna - image 752222
“The double-element carbon-fiber rear wing sits four feet from the road at its highest point”

Below, there are slim LED taillights almost hidden underneath the edge of the decklid. The simple design is also the result of intense aero testing, as they minimize interruption to airflow. The double diffuser is just as wide as the rear fascia and uses its unique design to create a low-pressure zone that sucks the car tighter to the ground. The visual drama is completed by the double-element carbon-fiber rear wing. Sitting four feet from the road at its highest point, the wing has almost vertical stanchions and massive side pods. The design is rather unusual for a road car, being closer to something you’d find on a full-fledged race car, but it proves that McLaren made no compromises on its way to finding the best aerodynamics.

Speaking of which, both the front and rear section feature active aerodynamics and McLaren claims they raise downforce and aero control to “an unprecedented level.” There aren’t any actual figures to back this claim, but it’s hard to argue given the extreme design. Oh, and did I mention that every panel is made from carbon-fiber?

All told, the McLaren Senna is dramatic to say the least and, while it’s not the prettiest car the British firm has built so far, its aerodynamics and functionality should be superior to the P1 and maybe even the track-only P1 GTR!

Interior

  • F1-inspired doors
  • Carbon-fiber everything
  • Clutter-free dashboard
  • Racing seats
  • Folding Drive Display
  • Storage for helmets and racing suits

2019 McLaren Senna - image 752210
“The carbon-fiber cockpit is inspired by the world of racing”

To get inside the cabin, you need to open the F1-inspired dihedral doors that hinge forward and upward, opening with a portion of the roof. This system provides an aperture of sufficient size for drivers and passengers to enter or exit the cockpit even when wearing a helmet and a race suit. It pretty obvious that while road legal, the Senna is aimed at customers who spend a lot of time at the track. The doors have two-piece glass windows for proper insulation, with a fixed top part and a smaller opening section below.

As you’d expect from a top-of-the-league McLaren, the Senna’s cockpit is inspired by the world of racing. Carbon-fiber was used extensively on the dashboard, center console, door panels, seats, and even the steering wheel. Unlike other modern supercars, the steering wheel is free of buttons and switches, while driver controls on the center console have been kept to a minimum. Most functions are operated through the vertical infotainment screen attached to the dashboard, which also includes buttons for the manual transmission setup and the ESC system. Further information is available on the Folding Driver Display, which we first saw in the McLaren 720S.


2019 McLaren Senna - image 752209
“The Folding Drive Display keeps the driver focused on the race track”

Designed to rotate around its horizontal axis, the Folding Drive Display provides a comprehensive range of information in its regular, upright position, and switches to Slim Display Model to show only essential data on a small strip, just line in a race car. The idea is to keep the driver focused on the important info while driving at the track, which makes a lot of sense in a car like the Senna.

The carbon-fiber seats have heavy bolstering. The can be had in either Alcantara or leather and have an “S” letter embossed on the headrests. They don’t look very comfortable for cruising, but they provide the utmost lateral support on twisty race tracks.

Storage space is restricted to a chamber behind the seats, with just enough room for two helmets and race suits. Yup, that’s far from practical, but as a customer, you should feel lucky that McLaren made an effort to add a bit of room in there. The Brits almost removed the second seat, so space for two helmets is actually a bit of a compromise.


2019 McLaren Senna - image 752208
“Storage space is restricted to a chamber behind the seats, with just enough room for two helmets and race suits”

Another interesting feature lies atop the cabin and has to do with the experience of driving a road-legal race car. The “snorkel” intake on the roof produces “precisely tailored high-frequency” sounds that make the cockpit come alive under full throttle. In addition, low-frequency sounds from the engine are transferred into the cockpit through unique engine mounts. The double-walled rear structure of the carbon fiber Monocage absorb these vibrations and amplify every change in
engine revs, making it seem almost as if the powerplant is “sitting alongside the driver.”

Sounds exciting but, unfortunately, not many of us will get to experience that anytime soon.

Drivetrain

  • Upgraded carbon-fiber tub
  • Weighs only 2,641 pounds
  • Twin-turbo, 4.0-liter V-8
  • 789 horsepower
  • 590 pound-feet of torque
  • Dual-clutch, seven-speed transmission

2019 McLaren Senna - image 752223
“The carbon-fiber tub is a further development of the structure in the 720S”

Much like its predecessor, the Senna is built around a carbon-fiber tub. It’s called the Monocage III, and it’s a further development of the structure in the 720S, itself an upgrade over the P1’s. McLaren claims it’s the strongest monocoque it has built. It’s also incredible light and contributes to a supercar that tips the scales at an impressive 1,198 kg (2,641 pounds). It’s a bit heavier than the F1, which weighed in at 1,138 kg (2,509 pounds), but it’s very impressive for a modern supercar.

Power comes from an upgraded version of the twin-turbo, 4.0-liter V-8 engine that McLaren introduced in the 720S. On top of the upgraded components, the powerplant also gained lighter internals. Although the successor to the P1 was expected to be a hybrid, there’s no electric motor in the Senna. The decision is somewhat awkward given McLaren’s aim to electrify its entire lineup, but maybe the Brits are planning another supercar with a gasoline-electric combo.


2019 McLaren Senna - image 752201
“Power comes from an upgraded version of the twin-turbo, 4.0-liter V-8 engine”

But despite not being backed by an electric motor, the V-8 is plenty powerful, being rated at 789 horsepower and 590 pound-feet of torque. That’s an extra 79 horsepower and 22 pound-feet of twist over the 720S. Compared to the P1 in gasoline-only mode, it’s a 62-horsepower and 59-pound-foot upgrade. However, the Senna is actually 114 horsepower and 133 pound-feet below the P1’s total hybrid rating. It’s a bit disappointing that a brand-new supercar is less powerful than its predecessor, but the better power-to-weight ratio (659 horsepower per tonne vs. 647) and the superior aerodynamics should make it quicker and more agile. Unfortunately, McLaren has yet to release 0-to-60 acceleration and top speed figures.

Beyond the power rating, the V-8 uses motorsport-honed dry sump lubrication and a flat-plane crankshaft. A dual-clutch, seamless-shift, seven-speed transmission delivers the power to the rear wheels. The fully automatic mode is default, but the driver can choose full manual control of gear shifts via carbon-fiber paddles mounted behind the steering wheel.

McLaren Senna McLaren 720S McLaren P1 McLaren P1 Hybrid
Engine 4.0-liter V-8 4.0-litre twin-turbo V-8 3.8-litre twin-turbo V8 3.8-litre twin-turbo V8 plus electric motor
Horsepower 789 HP 710 HP @ 7,500 RPM 727 HP @ 7,500 RPM
Torque 590 LB-FT 568 LB-FT @ 5,500 RPM 531 LB-FT @ 4,000 RPM
Combined output 903 HP
Combined torque 1,100 LB-FT
Transmission Dual-clutch, seven-speed transmission 7 Speed SSG dual-clutch seven-speed gearbox dual-clutch seven-speed gearbox
Weight 2,641 LBS 2,828 Lbs 3,075 Lbs 3,075 Lbs
0 to 60 mph TBA 2.8 seconds 2.8 seconds 2.8 seconds
Top Speed TBA 212 mph 217 mph 217 mph

Suspension and Brakes


2019 McLaren Senna - image 752216

The Senna rides on a RaceActive Chassis Control II hydraulic suspension that works in conjunction with the front and rear active aerodynamics system. The double-wishbone features hydraulically interconnected dampers and hydraulic anti-roll bars instead of the conventional mechanical units. The whole system is a further development of the variable stiffness and ride height technology first seen in the McLaren P1

The stiffness is controlled using a kinetic roll system, while a new Race mode lowers the ride height, lowers the center of gravity, and stiffens the suspension.

Stooping power comes from a new, advanced braking system with carbon-ceramic discs. The wheels, which are limited to just one design with a race-spec center nut, come wrapped in bespoke Pirelli P Zero Trofeo R tires. Made specifically for the McLaren Senna, these tires were designed for the race track but approved for road use.

Prices


2019 McLaren Senna - image 752211

Pricing for the McLaren Senna starts from £750,000 including taxes in the United Kingdom. This converts to around $1 million as of December 2017, but we’ll have to wait for official pricing for the U.S. market for an exact figure.

Interestingly enough, the Senna costs less than the P1, which retailed from £866,000 in the U.K. Having said that, it’s likely that U.S.pricing for the Senna will be lower than the P1, so expect it to fetch less than $1.35 million. I’d venture to say that the supercar will start from around $1.15 million.

Production of the Senna will be limited to 500 units, which is 125 more than the P1, which was built in 375 examples. According to McLaren, the entire production run is already sold out. The official debut will take place at the Geneva Motor Show in March 2018.

Competition

Finding competitors for the Senna is a difficult task. While there are plenty of powerful supercars out there, like the Ferrari 812 Superfast and the Bugatti Chiron, none are as capable at the track as the Senna. The Aston Martin Vulcan would have what it takes to give the McLaren a run for its money, but you can’t drive it on public roads. This leaves us with just two high-profile supercars that have yet to be launched for sale as of December 2017.

Aston Martin Valkyrie


2018 Aston Martin AM-RB 001 - image 722966

Developed with input from Formula One genius Adrian Newey, the Valkyrie is as innovative as the Senna. It has aggressive aerodynamics, F1-inspired styling, and loads of unique features that you can’t see on other production cars. And it’s road legal. Wild-looking on the outside, the Valkyrie is very simple on the inside, where Aston Martin took the same no-nonsense approach as McLaren. This car is made almost entirely of carbon-fiber and, unlike the Senna, it’s being designed to deliver a 1:1 power-to-weight ratio. Specifics aren’t yet available, but it’s safe to assume that the Valkyrie will crank out more than 1,000 horsepower and hit 60 mph from a standing start in only 2.5 seconds. Power is supposed to come from a 6.5-liter V-12 engine, but it’s not yet known whether it will be part of a hybrid drivetrain or not. Production will be limited to “between 99 to 150 vehicles,” including the prototypes and the 25 track-only cars, so it will be quite the rare gem. It will be more expensive than the McLaren too, as it will cost more than the Vulcan, which retails for a whopping $2.3 million.

Read our full story on the 2018 Aston Martin Valkyrie.

Mercedes-AMG Concept One


2020 Mercedes-AMG Project One - image 730644

AMG’s very first supercar project isn’t supposed to arrive until 2019, but we already know a few things about it. Styling-wise, the most noticeable thing about it is that it doesn’t look like a Mercedes. Second; it’s not as radical as the Senna and the Valkyrie, but this isn’t a bad thing if you like more subdued designs. Still, it’s supposed to have race-like aerodynamics and downforce for solid performance on the track. And yes, it will be road legal too. The interior follows the same “form follows function” ethos with a clutter-free dashboard and a simple center console. But unlike the competition, it has massive displays in the center stack and the instrument cluster. The steering wheel is a tad more complicated too. Just like the Senna and the Valkyrie, there’s carbon-fiber almost everywhere you look. Motivation comes from a Formula One drivetrain that combines a 1.6-liter V-6 with an electrically-boosted turbocharger and an electric motor connected to the crankshaft. Total system output is expected to exceed 1,000 horsepower. Unlike the competition, the Concept One will also be able to run on electricity alone, albeit for only 15 miles or so.

Read our full review of the 2020 Mercedes-AMG Concept One.

Conclusion


2019 McLaren Senna - image 752222

I feel I should wait for the performance specs before making such a statement, but the McLaren Senna is the most radical supercar ever built. The aerodynamics seem to be out of this world, and the power-to-weight ratio is downright tremendous. To the extent that the Senna doesn’t need to be more powerful than its predecessor. Yeah, sure, I’m surprised that the Senna isn’t McLaren’s most powerful vehicle yet, but power isn’t always everything, especially in the case of cars that need to perform well on the track too. And the Senna was designed to do just that. It’s a race car that somehow is legal to use on public roads, and not many companies can do that. Yes, the Bugatti Chiron, for instance, is more powerful and has the higher top speed, but it simply sucks at the track. It wasn’t built to race, and it doesn’t have the ability to do so. As a race-ready vehicle for the road, the Senna is a unique car at this point, and the fact that it looks so radical only makes it that much better. Over to you, Ferrari.

A Tribute to Ayrton Senna


2019 McLaren Senna - image 752317
“The car is named after Ayrton Senna, one of the world's greatest Formula One drivers”

The car is named after Ayrton Senna, one of the world’s greatest Formula One drivers. Senna raced Formula One cars for 11 years, six of which it spent with McLaren. The Brazilian joined McLaren in 1988, after four years with Toleman and Lotus, when the British firm was racing Honda engines. Senna went on to win his first championship with McLaren in 1988 while finishing the 1989 season in second position. Two more titles followed in 1990 and 1991, helping McLaren become one of the most prominent F1 constructors at the time. His 1992 season was less impressive with a fourth-place finish, while in 1993 he lost the championship to Alain Prost. In 1994, Senna made the switch to Williams. The Brazilian driver died following a crash at the San Marino Grand Prix, when his car left the racing line at nearly 200 mph, running into a concrete wall. McLaren has won a total of eight constructors’ championship between 1974 and 1998, four of them scored with Ayrton Senna in the team.

“Our family is extremely proud of the naming of the new Ultimate Series McLaren Senna. This is the first project that really connects with Ayrton’s racing spirit and performance. The McLaren Senna honors my uncle because it is so utterly dedicated to delivering a circuit experience that allows a driver to be the best they can possibly be. There is an absolute, seamless connection between car and driver and this pure engagement, these sensory cues that a driver responds to and relies upon, ensure an experience so focused and immersive that you are left in awe of the depths of excellence the McLaren Senna possesses,” said Bruno Senna, racing driver and McLaren ambassador.

  • Leave it
    • Performance specs not yet available
    • Where’s the center-mounted driver seats?
    • Already sold out

References

McLaren 720S


2018 McLaren 720S - image 708563

Read our full review on the 2018 McLaren 720S.

McLaren P1


2014 McLaren P1 - image 521889

Read our full review on the McLaren P1.



Read more McLaren news.

PostHeaderIcon Meet the 2019 McLaren Senna – Track-Going Evil With a Hunger For the Road

The McLaren Senna, aka the P15, has finally arrived and it comes to the party toting a 4.0-liter V-8 that delivers 789 horsepower and 590 pound-feet of torque – the most powerful engine that McLaren has stuffed in a road-going supercar so far. But, it’s not just the power that makes this thing downright potent. See, the Senna is also the lightest road-going car built by McLaren to date (with the exception of the legendary F1,) tipping the scales at just 1,198 kg or 2,641 pounds – that’s less than the minimum curb weight for the 2017 Honda Civic, 2017 Subaru BRZ, and the BMW 3 Series. And, it’s no more than 300 pounds heavier than the 2017 Mazda MX-5 Miata. Sure, they are in a different class, but that’s the point. All told the car is so light that it has a power-to-weight ratio of 658 horsepower per ton – a staggering figure to say the least. Those are just the basics, though, so keep reading to learn more!

Official Video

2019 McLaren Senna Details


Meet the 2019 McLaren Senna – Track-Going Evil With a Hunger For the Road - image 752204
“The chassis and body panels are all composed of carbon fiber, with the chassis being the Monocage III, an evolution of the structure that underpins the McLaren 720S”

With the basics out of the way, let’s talk a little more about helps make the Senna possible. It starts out with an ultralightweight construction from head to toe. The chassis and body panels are all composed of carbon fiber, with the chassis being the Monocage III, an evolution of the structure that underpins the McLaren 720S.
Then you’ve got the aerodynamics. We’re talking about an all-new generation of aerodynamics from McLaren, with every single inch of the body designed to optimize downforce and aerodynamic balance in all conditions. In the rear, you’ve got that massive double diffuser that quite literally sucks the Senna to the ground to go with a carbon fiber wing that sits just 1,219 mm off the road at a standstill. Hit the gas, and that wing adjusts constantly, even functioning as a true-to-life airbrake under extreme braking load.

Despite the fact that this car looks absolutely crazy on the outside – and by crazy, I mean extreme – what really tells you that this road-going car was bred for the track is the interior. First off, you’ll notice the interior is all about business. There is carbon fiber everywhere and a serious lack of trim panels to save weight. Driver controls are at a minimum with most features being controlled through the infotainment screen and MFDD. Still not enough to say this thing is really a track monster? Well, you can bring a passenger (barely), but there’s no room for anything outside of what you can fit in your pockets. Behind the seats, you’ll find just enough room for helmets and race suits. That’s it; nothing else.


Meet the 2019 McLaren Senna – Track-Going Evil With a Hunger For the Road - image 752218
“As mentioned previously, that 4.0-liter delivers 789 horsepower and 590 pound-feet, but what’s important to know is that it, too, is ultralightweight”

As mentioned previously, that 4.0-liter delivers 789 horsepower and 590 pound-feet, but what’s important to know is that it, too, is ultralightweight. We’re talking a dry sump lubrication system, flat plane crank, and as many lightweight components as McLaren could muster up. A pair of ultra-low inertia, twin-scroll turbos cram as much air into the engine as possible while the electronic wastegates keep the throttle on point. Shifting duties are handled by a dual-clutch seven-speed that features seamless-shift technology. Automatic mode is the standard mode, but switch over to manual mode, and you can peg the engine any way you want with those paddles behind the steering wheel.

Under the carbon fiber sits a RaceActive Chassis Control II (RCC II) suspension system. It works together with all those active aero components to keep things steady. It’s a double-wishbone system with hydraulic dampers, eliminating the need for mechanical anti-roll bars. It allows for variable stiffness just like on the McLaren P1, but it has been improved. Meanwhile, the braking system of the Senna is also just as extreme. Specs at this point are nil, but McLaren says they are the most advanced ever fitted to a car that wears the McLaren badge. All we know thus far is that that utilize carbon ceramic discs. The ride behind ultralightweight alloy wheels wrapped in Pirelli P Zero Trofeo R tires.


Meet the 2019 McLaren Senna – Track-Going Evil With a Hunger For the Road - image 752222
“The McLaren Senna will be built in just 500 examples at a price of £750,00 or just over $1 million here in the U.S.”

Now, for the bad news. The McLaren Senna will be built in just 500 examples at a price of £750,00 or just over $1 million here in the U.S. Not that it matters, though, as all 500 models have already been “assigned” to customers. Seriously, though. Do people actually go through an application process or does McLaren actually assign new models to its customers? Back to the topic at hand, the new Senna will make it’s world debut at the Geneva International Motor Show next March at which point we should be able to get some real performance specs. We’ll be updating our full review of the McLaren Senna in the next couple of days so check back soon to hear even more about this new road-going track monster!

References



Read more McLaren news.

PostHeaderIcon Lamborghini Urus

2019 Lamborghini Urus

The SUV assault continues, filtering into every niche of every market imaginable. With so much demand out there, just about every automaker on the planet is getting in on the action, including some with a history that deviates quite a bit from the SUV norm. That includes Lamborghini, which just unveiled the Urus, a follow-up to the cult classic LM002. This time around, Lambo is doing it right, giving the Urus super car-esque agility, speed, and performance, all with a sharp (yet jacked-up) body style crammed with luxury and even a little off-road worthiness. Lambo is calling it the first Super Sport Utility Vehicle, but makes like Porsche and Bentley might have a few words to say about that.

Either way, this is a breakthrough moment for the Raging Bull. While the LM002 was arguably the brand’s first “real” SUV, you can’t really compare it to the hyperspeed Urus. While the old Ramboghini got square styling and somewhat plodding performance, the Urus looks and acts like a Lambo should. It’s also got the first-ever turbocharged engine in a Lambo. All told, Lamborghini claims this thing has a “dual personality” and is “multi-dimensional” in what it can do. But the question is this – where does it land amongst the bevy of fast luxury SUVs already on the market?

Continue reading to learn more about the 2019 Lamborghini Urus.

2019 Lamborghini Urus – Official video

Exterior

  • Mixes Aventador and Huracan with SUV tradition
  • Hexagonal shapes and sharp angles front to back
  • 21-inch to 23-inch wheels
  • Real working aero
  • Longer than a Porsche Cayenne Turbo S

2019 Lamborghini Urus - image 749810
“The Urus creates a blend of styling that combines the jacked-up off-roader aesthetic of the Lamboghini LM002 with the scalpel-sharp lines of the Aventador or Huracan.”

Right off the bat, the Lamborghini Urus is one of the most aggressive-looking factory SUVs we’ve seen in a while. The styling is meant to show off the Urus’ mix of luxury and performance, taking cues from Lambo’s very-first off-roader, the LM002, while also mixing in a good deal of Lambo’s traditional sports car cues as well.

And that’s a good thing when you consider one of the LM002’s greatest failings was the fact it looked nothing like the hyper spaceship aesthetic we’ve come to associate with the brand. Rather, the Urus creates a blend of styling that combines the jacked-up off-roader aesthetic of the Lamboghini LM002 with the scalpel-sharp lines of the Aventador or Huracan.


2019 Lamborghini Urus - image 749812
“The first thing you’ll notice when seeing this SUV from the front is the geometric bumper and fascia elements, which offer big, hexagonal intakes and Naca cooling bits”

That translates into a low-line coupe body style and short overhangs fused with a tall stance and more ground clearance than you’re accustomed to see on a Ranging Bull. Lambo also says the Urus gets a “two-thirds body, one-third window ratio” for the exterior, the same proportion as its sports cars, marking it a clear break from the large, square glass seen on the LM002.

The first thing you’ll notice when seeing this SUV from the front is the geometric bumper and fascia elements, which offer big, hexagonal intakes and Naca cooling bits to keep the brakes as chilly as possible. Below this sits a front splitter element that forms an offset to various body-colored angles. There are also several Y-shaped intake dividers similar to the LM002. Slim front lights sit high on the fender lines, and get horizontal, Y-shaped housings with five individual squared-off LED lighting elements. Behind the headlights is a bulging hood line, a feature Lambo says resembles the Miura and Aventador, while additional diagonal hood lines take inspiration from the Countach. A sharp rake to the windshield gives it even more sporty flavoring.


2019 Lamborghini Urus - image 749816
“Although it is quite a looker, aero was another major consideration for the development team, which worked to reduce coefficient of drag in the name of less wind noise, better engine efficiency, and more downforce.”

Moving to the sides, the Urus’ Coupe profile becomes clear. There are frameless doors and a swooping window line that suggests the low-down seating position that awaits the passengers. Speaking of which, we would have preferred it of Lambo gave the Urus some gullwing doors, although we understand why it didn’t. Moving on, we find the C-pillar’s design reminiscent of the Huracan, while more hexagons were used for the shape wheel arches. Behind the front wheels is a triangular cutout with the colors of the Italian flag, while wheel sizing ranges between 21 inches and 23 inches in diameter. When viewed from above, the Urus gets an hourglass shape, yet another sporty cue for the SUV.

Moving to the rear, there are Y-shaped taillight housings, plus a rear diffuser similar to what you might find on a Lambo race car, plus a quartet of integrated rounded exhaust tips. And although it is quite a looker, aero was another major consideration for the development team, which worked to reduce coefficient of drag in the name of less wind noise, better engine efficiency, and more downforce. Although Lambo declined to provide exact numbers on these various specs, we can find a set of aero blades on the outside rear window, a floating rear wing, an integrated rear spoiler, and a rear spoiler lip. Lambo also says there are various aero elements inside the wheel wells as well.

Finally, the Urus gets a rather lengthy long wheelbase, measuring in at 3,003 mm (118.2 inches). That’s quite a bit longer than competitors like the Porsche Cayenne Turbo S, which measures in at just 114 inches.

Exterior Dimensions

Wheelbase (Inches) 118.22
Overall length (Inches) 201.25
Overall width (excluding mirrors) (Inches) 79.37
Overall height (Inches) 64.48
Track front/rear (Inches) 66.73/67.32
Ground clearance (Inches) 6.22/9.76 (adjustable via air suspension)

Interior

  • Gets fighter jet like layout
  • Relatively small amount of cargo space
  • Optional two-seat rear bench
  • Basic infotainment and driver assists

2019 Lamborghini Urus - image 749823

Without a doubt, Lambo has a unique, recognizable aesthetic, and that extends into the interior space as well. The Urus offers the classic Raging Bull cues with a driver-focused layout and lowered seating position, plus a control scheme that should help drivers “feel like a pilot.”

Once again, we find lots of geometric design elements and hard angles. Hexagons were used for things like the door handles, air vents, air bag modules, and cup holders. Lambo also says the LM002 provided inspiration for some of the layout, but we don’t really see the similarities beyond an ultra-wide center console.

left
right
Lamborghini LM002 interior Lamborghini Urus interior

“Pilots” hold onto a multi-function three-spoke steering wheel with a vibration damper, which also gets thumb-length multifunction switches on the left and right for the infotainment system, navigation, and phone functions.

Seating for five passengers keeps it practical. The seats themselves were specially designed for the Urus, with the sitters in front getting sporty DNA memory units offering a heating function and electric 12-way adjustability as standard. Optional equipment includes 18-way electric luxury seats with a ventilation and massage function. If you’re looking for enhanced rear luxury, you can go for the exclusive two-seat second-row layout (as opposed to the standard three-seater arrangement). Meanwhile, the rear bench can also be reconfigured with the movable and folding function, enhancing rear cargo space in the process. With the bench up, rear cargo room comes to 616 liters (21.8 cubic feet), while with it down, cargo room expands to 1,596 liters (56.4 cubic feet). Compared to the Porsche Cayenne, that’s a bit under the Stuttgart competitor’s already small 23.6 cubic feet and 62.9 cubic feet, respectively.

“Of course, if maximum practicality is high on your priority list, this isn’t the SUV for you. Rather, the focus here is on speed and luxury.”

Of course, if maximum practicality is high on your priority list, this isn’t the SUV for you. Rather, the focus here is on speed and luxury, and for that latter characteristic, Lambo made sure to reduce “unwanted mechanical noise” while also keeping the good sounds intact. The Urus also includes a bevy of high-end materials, such as aluminum, wood, and carbon fiber for the trim bits, plus Alcantara and leather for the upholstery. Standard spec includes a single color for the leather, and trim in either Grigio Octans or Nero Ade. There are also five extra optional colors and a variety of double-color options making the list. Further customization can be had with various stitching options, seat belt colors, floor mat colors, carpet colors, and more. The dash is finished in piano black with brushed aluminum as standard, but open pore wood and carbon fiber are also offered.

Covering the infotainment front is a TFT digital display with 3D visualization and several customizable settings. The platform is the new Lamborghini Infotainment System III software, with two touchscreens for inputs and readouts. The upper screen does the entertainment, navigation, phone, and car status, while the lower screen has a keyboard input, handwriting recognition, and controls for the climate and seat heating. There’s also voice command.

“Covering the infotainment front is a TFT digital display with 3D visualization and several customizable settings. The platform is the new Lamborghini Infotainment System III software, with two touchscreens for inputs and readouts.”

Further tech goodies include a phone holder with wireless charging, a few USB connectors, Bluetooth support, a DVD player, a TV tuner, a DAB and CI car reader, a heads-up display, a smartphone interface, and rear seat entertainment. There’s also support for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Making the music is an eight-speaker stereo with four-channel sound. Audiophiles are encouraged to check out the optional Bang & Olufsen system packing 1,700 watts, 3D sound, and 21 speakers.

A few modern driver assists are also part of the tech stuff, with features like high beam assist, front and rear parking sensors, and collision mitigation as standard. Options include stuff like traffic management, a top-view camera, and trailer-coupling mode.

“A few modern driver assists are also part of the tech stuff.”

To help it make par for the course as a modern SUV (especially one in this pricing segment), Lambo throws in a keyless start and seven profiles programmed for the seating position, driving modes, and infotainment settings. In back is an electric rear tailgate with rear-kick detection and hands-free operation, plus an automatic rear ride height lowering function for easier loading and unloading.

Finally, drivers can select from a lineup of driving modes via the “Tamburo” (or drum). Basically, the Tamburo is the Urus’ driving dynamics controller, located in the center console and offering a selection of sound and driving feel changes, from the quiet Strada mode, to the louder Corsa mode. The sound is also customized based on engine speed, with more sound made as you explore higher in the rev range.

Drivetrain

  • twin-turbo 4.0-liter V-8
  • 0-to-62 mph in 3.6 seconds and top speed of 190 mph
  • quicker than a Porsche Cayenne Turbo S
  • faster than a Bentley Bentayga

2019 Lamborghini Urus - image 749825
“The 0-to-62 mph sprint is done in 3.6 seconds, while 0-to-124 mph is done in 12.8 seconds. Top speed is rated 190 mph, making the Urus the fastest SUV on the market.”

The heart of the matter is a front-mounted, twin-turbo, 4.0-liter V-8 producing 650 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 850 Nm (627 pound-feet) of torque at 2,250 rpm. Redline is set at 6,800 rpm.

For those of you keeping track, that’s 162.7 horsepower per liter, a number Lambo is claiming as the highest specific output for its class. The power-to-weight ratio is calculated as 3.38 kg per horsepower.

All told, this is one screaming SUV. The 0-to-100 km/h (62 mph) sprint is done in 3.6 seconds, while 0-to-200 km/h (124 mph) is done in 12.8 seconds. Top speed is rated 305 km/h (190 mph), making the Urus the fastest SUV on the market. And that’s a good thing, because after all, the Urus is, first and foremost, a Lamborghini, no?

Notable features for the engine include an all-aluminum construction, double overhead cams, variable valve timing, and new cylinder liner technology to help cut down on weight, as well as twin-scroll turbochargers set up in parallel for less turbo lag and loads of low-end torque. Lambo even mentions how the extra low-range grunt is perfect for off-roading (more on all that in the next section). It should also be noted that the Urus is the first-ever turbocharged engine for a Lamborghini model.

Separate twin exhaust pipes exhale the spent gasses to optimize the power band with the cylinder firing sequence. There’s also cylinder deactivation to make it a bit more efficient, although we wouldn’t recommend the 650-horse Urus if you’re trying to go light on the explodey juice.


2019 Lamborghini Urus - image 749819
“The gearbox feeds a new Lamborghini 4WD system, offering all-weather capability and Torsen central self-locking differential well-suited to the rigors of off-road driving.”

Making the cog swaps is an eight-speed automatic transmission with an electro-hydraulically controlled planetary gearbox, slip-controlled converter lock-up clutch, and a unique torque converter to help sharpen overall engine response.

The gearbox feeds a new Lamborghini 4WD system, offering all-weather capability and Torsen central self-locking differential well-suited to the rigors of off-road driving. Torque split is 40 percent front and 60 percent rear while cruising, but can see a dynamic shift with up to 70 percent front or 87 percent rear, as needed.

Finally, the rear differential gets an active torque vectoring system, which controls the yaw rates for a more engaging driving experience and less understeer.

Lamborghini Urus performance and engine specs

Engine type twin-turbo 4.0-liter V-8
Drivetrain configuration front-engine, 4WD
Transmission 8-speed automatic gearbox, characteristic depending on drive mode
Horsepower 650 HP @ 6,000 RPM
Torque 627 LB-FT @ 2,250 RPM
0-to-100 km/h (62 mph) 3.6 seconds
0-to-200 km/h (124 mph) 12.8 seconds
Top Speed 190 mph
Braking 100-0 km/h [62-0 mph] 33,7 m

Chassis And Handling

  • Multiple drive modes for adaptability
  • Active air damper system
  • Available off-roading package
  • Torque vectoring and rear-wheel steering
  • Carbon ceramic brakes as standard

2019 Lamborghini Urus - image 749816

While making an SUV fast is a relatively simple affair (just add power), making it handle right is a bit trickier, especially if it’s supposed to be comfortable on the street and capable in the rough stuff as well. To that end, the Urus comes equipped with multiple driving modes and active suspension and chassis components to help it adapt to whatever the situation may be.

First off, let’s talk about those various driving modes. Several are named in Italian, and include self-explanatory titles like Strada (street), Terra (land, or off-roading), Neve (snow), Sabbia (sand), Sport, and Corsa (race). Put it into Sport or Corsa mode, and you’ll be met with a lowered stance, less body roll, firmer dampers, and a greater degree of oversteer from the active torque vectoring system. As you can imagine, Strada is all about comfort, reversing the above characteristics, while Neve, Terra, and Sabbia raise the suspension and loosen the anti-roll bars for “independent asymmetric movement.”


2019 Lamborghini Urus - image 749817
“Making the magic is the an adaptive air suspension, with special new damper valves that make continuous adjustments to meet the given conditions, firming up in the corners and softening in the straights”

Making the magic is the an adaptive air suspension, with special new damper valves that make continuous adjustments to meet the given conditions, firming up in the corners and softening in the straights. The adaptive dampers are automatic or customizable, depending on your preference. There’s also an electromechanical active roll stabilization system, a first for Lambo, which reduces the roll angle with active decoupling of the stabilizer halves. 4WD and electronic stability control help to keep the oversteer in check.

There’s also rear-wheel steering similar to what you get in the Lamborghini Aventador S. This system angles the rear axle by as much as +/- 3.0 degrees, varying its settings according to the current speed and driving mode selected.
At low speeds, the rear axle steers at the opposite angle as the front wheels (also known as “counter-phase steering”), a characteristic that Lambo says effectively shortens the wheelbase by 600 mm in terms of turn-in crispness. At high speeds, the rear wheels turn in the same direction as those in front (“in-phase steering”), effectively making the wheelbase 600 mm longer for higher stability.

So it’s good on the track. That’s to be expected, considering the badge. But what’s all this about off-roading? If you’re actually thinking about taking your six-figure Lambo into the rough stuff, the Urus is offered with an Off-Roader Package that tosses in the Terra and Sabbia driving modes, metal-reinforced bumpers, and additional underfloor protection. We can’t wait to see what it can do.


2019 Lamborghini Urus - image 749824
“If you’re actually thinking about taking your six-figure Lambo into the rough stuff, the Urus is offered with an Off-Roader Package that tosses in the appropriate gear to do so.”

Put it on the scales, and the Urus weighs in at less than 2,200 kg (4,850 pounds). Considering just how much car we’re talking about here, that sounds about right. Of course, it could have been heavier, but Lambo managed to cut some heft with aluminum and steel for the chassis, including aluminum applications for the doors, torsional beams, and cross members, There’s also lightweight seats, and wheels made from forged aluminum. The front axle gets an aluminum subframe, while the rear axle is aluminum and steel.

“To help haul it down from the impressive speeds it can achieve, the Urus gets big brakes and several track-bred components.”

To help haul it down from the impressive speeds it can achieve, the Urus gets big brakes and several track-bred components. Most notable are the standard carbon ceramic brake discs, which offer high thermal resistance to ensure crisp stops even during “frequent and heavy braking.” Sizing for these is measured at a rather large 440 mm (17.3 inches) by 40 mm (1.6 inches) in front and 370 mm (14.6 inches) by 30 mm (1.2 inches) in the rear. Stand it on its nose at 100 km/h (62 mph), and Lambo claims the Urus will stop in 33.7 meters (110.6 feet).

To make it grip, Lamborghini is offering several different tire options, including all-season rubber, winter tires, all-terrain tires, and sport tires. Pirelli is the provider for all the above, with specially developed compounds made specifically for the Urus. Tire width is staggered front to back.

Pricing


2019 Lamborghini Urus - image 749813

The Urus is offered across most major markets. Deliveries are scheduled to kick off in the spring of 2018. Pricing in the U.S. starts at $200,000, but expect that final total to rise significantly depending on the options picked.

2018 Lamborghini Urus MSRP

U.S.A. $200,000
Europe 171,429 euros
Italy 168,852 euros
U.K. 131,500 pounds
China 3,130,000 RMB
Japan 25,740,000 yen

Competition

Porsche Cayenne Turbo S


2016 Porsche Cayenne Turbo S - image 610560

The first level of competition for the Urus is the Porsche Cayenne Turbo S. At a “budget” price of $159,600 in 2017, the Cayenne jumps out to a huge advantage against the Urus. The good stops there, however, as the 4.8-liter V-8 turbocharged engine in the Cayenne Turbo S pumps out 570 horsepower and 590 pound-feet of torque, a significant deficiency compared to the Urus’ 650 horses. Still, the Porsche is pretty quick from 0 to 60 mph, needing 3.8 seconds to achieve the benchmark on its way to a top speed of 176 mph. Another high point with the Cayenne is the fact that it can do some real-life work, as it tows up to 7,716 pounds.

Learn more about the Porsche Cayenne Turbo S.

Bentley Bentayga


2017 Bentley Bentayga - image 645128

Unleashed in 2016, the Bentley Bentayga is the latest performance luxury SUV and one of the reasons why Lamborghini is joining the SUV market. With a massive 6.0-liter W-12 engine under its hood, the Bentayga hits the road with 600 horsepower and 664 pound-feet of torque, making it the fastest and most powerful SUV on the road – next to the Urus, that is. Its 4-second 0-to-60 mph sprint and 187-mph top speed make it slower than the Lambo, although not by much, and considering the Bentley’s incredible interior, this might be the right pick for those interested in comfort over track-based bragging rights. Pricing starts from $229,100, which makes the Bentley the most expensive SUV as of February 2017.

Find our more about the Bentley Bentayga.

Conclusion


2019 Lamborghini Urus - image 749820

To be completely honest, the idea of a Lamborghini SUV feels a bit wrong, but then again, this is brand that’s never been totally “sane” when it comes to its models. One look at the Miura, Veneo, or Egoista is proof positive of that, so maybe a Lambo SUV is just about right.

Either way, the Urus has the right stuff for a vehicle plastered with the Raging Bull badge. It’s fast, looks great, and will undoubtedly make the wish list of many a buyer out there.

“The Urus elevates the SUV to a level not previously possible, the Super SUV,” says Stefano Domenicali, CEO and Chairman at Automobili Lamborghini. “It is a true Lamborghini in terms of design, performance, driving dynamics and emotion as well as drivable every day in a range of environments.”

We’ve gotta agree, and wouldn’t be surprised to see even more speed from the nameplate in the future as the competition steps up to challenge it. And as long as sales of the Urus fuel the brand’s sports car development, who can complain?

  • Leave it
    • Questionable practicality
    • Will anyone actually take this off-roading?
    • A bit light in terms of interior tech
    • Purists will find it revolting

References

Lamborghini Urus


2019 Lamborghini Urus - image 749811

Read our full review on the 2019 Lamborghini Urus.


2012 Lamborghini Urus - image 451044

Read our full review on the Lamborghini Urus Concept.


1986 - 1993 Lamborghini LM002 - image 737272

Read our full review on the 1986-1993 Lamborghini LM002.

What’s with the Name?

Though the name sounds odd, it is very appropriate for the model. The Urus, also called the Aurochs, is an ancient ancestor of the modern day cow, which went extinct in 1627. These things were massive, ranging from 61 to 71 inches tall at the shoulders and weighing in at 1,500 pounds – phew, that’s a lot of quarter pounders. This makes the urus one of the largest bulls ever recorded, which is appropriate, considering the Lamborghini Urus is the largest model to boast the Raging Bull emblem.

Now that we have turned off Animal Planet, we can continue with the Lamborghini Urus and not the extinct cow relative. There is some debate as to whether Lamborghini can actually support an SUV, especially after the LM002, the original Lambo SUV, fizzled out in 1993 with only 328 models ever produced. So, can Lambo actually have a successful SUV this time around?

Updated History

Updated 05/17/2017: Our spy photographers caught the upcoming Lamborghini Urus out for a first testing session at Nurburgring.

Updated 05/15/2017: Based on the recent spy shots, we created a rendering for the upcoming Lamborghini Urus.

Updated 02/12/2015: Lamborghini has confirmed to Autocar that the Urus will be powered by a twin-turbo V-8 unique to the SUV. Continue reading for the full details

Spy Shots

May 17, 2017 – Lamborghini Urus caught testing at Nurburgring

PostHeaderIcon Devel Sixteen

The Bugatti Chiron. The Koenigsegg Agera RS. The Mercedes-AMG Project One. The Aston Martin Valkyrie. The Hennessey Venom F5. These are the names of five of the most prominent performance cars of 2017. Yet somehow, not one of these cars can lay claim to being the most bonkers car to make its debut this year. That title belongs to the Devel Sixteen, thought to be nothing more than a mythical figment of the imagination when the prototype was introduced to the public four years ago. That was back in 2013 when the Devel Sixteen first became “something.” Four years later, it’s more than just “something” now; it’s the real deal.

It only takes one look at the car before you realize that you’re looking at a machine that could revolutionize the supercar/hypercar segment the same way cars like the McLaren F1 and the Ferrari F40 did two decades ago. It’s too early to say if the Sixteen has that potential, but the numbers being thrown around by Devel are completely unheard of. Think the Chiron is powerful by having 1,500 horsepower at its disposal? Well, Devel claims the Sixteen has 5,007 horsepower. 5,007! That’s more than three times the power produced by Bugatti’s latest crown and jewel! Think this current race-to-300-mph is worthwhile to follow? The Sixteen may soon render that race irrelevant with claims that it can hit 350 mph without even breaking a sweat. At some point, the hypercar will have a lot to prove when it finally gives us a taste of what it’s capable of. Until then, we’re going to sit here with bags full of salt, waiting for Devel to show us what the Sixteen is really all about.

Exterior


2018 Devel Sixteen - image 745545
“The car looks particularly long and stretched, emphasized by how the body swoops around as if every panel is wrapped around another panel”

The prototype version of the Devel Sixteen left little to the imagination as the prototype’s outrageous design provided us with a good preview of what’s to come. But as is the case with concepts like the 2013 version of the Sixteen, Devel did a lot of massaging on the production version’s design. The result is no less spectacular as the 2017 version looks every bit the part of a supercar sent from outer space.

The new-look Devel Sixteen is an exercise in quality car design. The car looks particularly long and stretched, emphasized by how the body swoops around as if every panel is wrapped around another panel. The front end remains properly ludicrous with the short yet sharp nose, the massive front spoiler that sits close to the ground, and the eccentric way the headlights are packaged. Move to the sides and you’re greeted with the sweeping wheel arches, the extended body lines, and the plethora of intakes and air ducts that are all over the car’s body. I suppose if you’re carrying a V-16 engine underneath that body, you’re going to need all those intakes and cooling ducts.


2018 Devel Sixteen - image 745548
“The rear wheel arches actually have fins on top of them, a unique take to an otherwise old design trick that allows minimal disturbance to the air flow that hits the car”

The rear section of the hypercar fits in with the demented theme of the body. The rear wheel arches actually have fins on top of them, a unique take to an otherwise old design trick that allows minimal disturbance to the air flow that hits the car. It’s interesting too how this section focuses on the two exhausts that look more like jet turbines. They’re so big that you can probably fit your head inside one of them and still have plenty of room to spare.

If the production version of the Devel Sixteen really looks like this, it’s going to redefine the way cars of this status will be looked at in the future. It is fitting that Manifattura Automobili Torino (MAT) is partly responsible for the car’s design. After all, this is the same firm that had a hand in building cars like the SCG 003 and the Apollo Intensa Emozione, two exotics that looked every bit the part of supercars in their own right.

Interior


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“The interior design of the Devel Sixteen is a far departure from the exterior design of the hypercar”

The interior design of the Devel Sixteen is a far departure from the exterior design of the hypercar. Whereas the latter invoked a serious amount of emotion, the cabin is less distinguished. There are still some futuristic elements to it, including the tablet-like steering wheel and the carbon shell seats that sit so close to the floor, but for the most part, Devel adopted a more minimalist approach in the latest version of the hypercar. I’m still not sure if that’s a good thing or a bad thing, but if it the car performs as well as it’s been hyped, I don’t think the interior’s going to matter as much.

Drivetrain


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“The Devel Sixteen is carrying a 12.3-liter V-16 quad-turbocharged engine”

I’m not going to beat around the bush with this one. The Devel Sixteen, for all of its eccentric design traits, will forever be defined by its promise to perform like no other car in the history of the world. The first big revelation is the car’s engine. Somehow, someway, the Devel Sixteen is carrying a 12.3-liter V-16 quad-turbocharged engine. That’s the kind of engine you normally see in heavily tuned drag racers. If your minds aren’t blown yet, then prepare yourselves for this do of a revelation. According to Devel, that massive engine allows the Sixteen to tap into 5,007 horsepower and 3,519 pound-feet of torque worth of power. Gulp.

Do the math and that’s more than three times the power output of the Bugatti Chiron, almost four times the output of the Aston Martin Valkyrie, and five times the power of the Mercedes-AMG Project One. Needless to say, the Sixteen isn’t
a car for the weak-of-heart. Devel is even estimating that once the Sixteen is up and running to its fullest capabilities, it could reach a top speed of around 310 mph.

As insane as that sounds, the real question to ask is whether it’s even possible to achieve that kind of speed on a car. Fittingly, that question has been thrown around a lot in recent months, largely due to significant movement from some of the biggest players in the supercar segment. The Koenigsegg Agera RS recently broke the Bugatti Veyron Super Sport’s seven-year record after averaging a top speed of 277.9 mph. Bugatti hasn’t responded yet with a lap time of its own, but it says that the Chiron is capable of reaching 300 mph if the engine’s speed limiter was removed. Then there’s Hennessey and its Venom F5. It claims that 300 mph on the new hypercar is a lock, even if it hasn’t proven it yet.


2018 Devel Sixteen - image 745559
“Devel is even estimating that once the Sixteen is up and running to its fullest capabilities, it could reach a top speed of around 310 mph.”

All of that jostling will be meaningless though if the Devel Sixteen somehow manages to back up its own claim of hitting 310 mph. That’s an attempt I’m definitely tuning in to watch.

Devel Sixteen Prototype Specifications

  • 12.3 LITER V16 QUAD TURBO
  • 5,007 HP, 36 PSI
  • 3,519 LB-FT @ 6,600 RPM, 36 PSI
  • 3,006 HP @ 6,900 RPM, 20 PSI (92 93 PUMP GAS – DAILY USE)
  • 2,407 TORQUE @ 6,400 RPM, 20 PSI
  • DEVEL SIXTEEN BILLET ENGINE BLOCK
  • DEVEL SIXTEEN CYLINDER HEADS
  • DEVEL SIXTEEN CRANKSHAFT
  • DEVEL SIXTEEN BILLET CAMSHAFT (ROLLER CAMSHAFT, STREET TUNE)
  • 2 VALVEs PER CYLINDER (32 TITANIUM VALVE)
  • 81 MM QUAD TURBO

Price


2018 Devel Sixteen - image 745549

Normally, assuming a car’s price tag is easy because there are so many references and comparisons to cull from. But I’m not even going to make any attempts at guessing how much Devel plans to sell the Sixteen if it does end up in production. I don’t even know how many units Devel plans to build. All I know is that a car with this much technology in it, not to mention a monstrous 12.3-liter V-16 engine underneath, is not going to come cheap. $7 million? $10 million? Maybe even $15 million? None of it matters. If you’re interested in buying the Sixteen, you’re going to need to break the bank for this one.

Competition

Bugatti Chiron


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There once was a time when anything that Bugatti built was considered the cream of the crop among supercars. Times may have changed as legitimate contenders have arisen, but Bugatti’s ability to develop supercars remains the same. The latest proof of that is the Chiron. The successor to the legendary Bugatti Veyron is capable of a lot of things, none more important than its ability to produce 1,500 horsepower and 1,180 pound-feet of torque out of its 8.0-liter quad-turbo W-16 engine. That kind of power allows it to accelerate from an idle position to 60 mph in just 2.3 seconds before going on a speeding spree onwards to an electronically limited 261 mph. Even better, Buggati says that the Chiron is capable of approaching 300 mph if the aforementioned limiter is disengaged. It may lack the power of the Devel Sixteen, but it’s still a race I’d be glad to pay real money to watch.

Read our full review on the 2018 Bugatti Chiron.

Koenigsegg Agera RS


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The Koenigsegg Agera RS is the current fastest production car in the world. It also follows a long line of Koenigseggs that have taken the supercar industry by storm. The Agera RS fits the bill of a quintessential exotic. It was developed with nothing less than the latest in automotive technology, has 1,360 horsepower at its disposal, and just averaged a top speed of 277.9 mph to break the Bugatti Veyron Super Sport’s seven-year top speed record for a production car. Right now, the Agera RS is the man, and if the Devel Sixteen wants to be the man, it’s going to have to beat the Koenigsegg for that title.

Read our full review on the 2017 Koenigsegg Agera RS.

Hennessey Venom F5


2019 Hennessey Venom F5 - image 742052

If I were to beat which car would come out with the fastest production car in the world title, my money’s on the Hennessey Venom F5. I don’t know enough about how far along Devel is in turning the Sixteen into an actual production car. I do know that the Venom F5 is here. Not only that, it’s heading to the party with a brand-new 7.4-liter V-8 engine that produces 1,600 horsepower and 1,300 pound-feet of torque. Hennessey has even teased us that its latest crown jewel can eclipse 300 mph. From the looks of things too, it’s closer than Devel to achieving that.

Read our full review on the 2019 Hennessey Venom F5.

Conclusion


2018 Devel Sixteen - image 745548

Everything that Devel has shown us about the Sixteen points to a hypercar that will change the game forever. The narrative is all there waiting to be printed. All Devel needs to do at this point is to make sure that the Sixteen sees production. Once it gets to that point, all bets are off as far as who the king of the hypercars will be.

  • Leave it
    • Won’t be cheap
    • Lots of unknowns
    • Safety could be an issue

PostHeaderIcon The 2018 Aston Martin Vantage Comes to Strike Fear in Porsche and Mercedes Purists Everywhere

2019 Aston Martin Vantage

The second-generation Aston Martin Vantage is here, and it takes the car’s design and aerodynamic prowess to a whole new dimension. It offers up an insane increase in power output (83 horsepower and more than 100 pound-feet of torque) over the outgoing V-8 model and can even hit a 60-mph sprint in less than 3.5 seconds. There’s even an all-new electronic differential, which is a first for any Aston Martin vehicle. With the last model running 2005 to 2017 – in various versions and trims, of course – it’s been a long time coming, but it’s finally here. So, let’s take a nice look at what the new Aston Martin Vantage has to offer in brief.

  • Two-door body style 2+0 seating
  • Extruded bonded aluminium body structure with steel panels
  • Looks similar to Mazda MX-5 at certain angles
  • Same grille enlarged and lowered
  • Front spoiler integrated with grille trim
  • Headlights sit closer to the nose and more horizontally
  • Side skirts act as spoilers and add a hint of extra aggression
  • Rear end is significantly wider
  • all-new diffuser and refined rear deck
  • Thinner taillights extend across rear spoiler
  • Aerodynamic design cuts back on air turbulence at the rear diffuser
  • All-new interior
  • Design cues remind of Lamborghini but smaller
  • Dash is more prominent and driver oriented
  • Futuristic Design in a modern world
  • German-like eight-inch infotainment display
  • Flat-bottom steering wheel w/ digital instrument cluster
  • Two-tone interior with high-sitting center console, low-seating position
  • iPod and iPhone integration, DAB radio, Satellite navigation
  • Aluminum 4.0-liter V-8 (Twin Turbo)
  • WTA Charge Cooling
  • Front-Mid engine configuration with RWD
  • Stainless steel, electronically controlled exhaust
  • VCT with CNC machined combustion chambers
  • 503 HP @ 6,000 rpm & 505 LB-FT @ 2,000 rpm
  • 0-60 mph in 3.5 seconds
  • Top Speed 195 mph
  • Rear-Mid ZF Eight-Speed Automatic Transmission
  • First Aston Martin to have an Electronic Differential
  • Double-wishbone independent suspension up front Rear multi-link in back
  • Adaptive Damping
  • 20-inch wheels with Pirelli P Zero tires

Aston Martin Vantage Exterior Update

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New Aston Martin Vantage Previous Aston Martin Vantage
“On the outside, the Vantage is very much the Vantage that we fell in love with more than a decade ago”

On the outside, the Vantage is very much the Vantage that we fell in love with more than a decade ago, but it has been refined, revised, and updated in a way that should will make existing models like the Mercedes-AMG GT, the Porsche 911 Turbo, and the Jaguar F-Type shake right out of the very rubber they ride on. To start off, engineers of at AM took that Vantage grille, enlarged it, and dropped it lower on the nose – ultimately allowing the nose to take on a more rounded look and for grille trim to integrate effortlessly with the front spoiler. The headlights now sit more prominently up front with a horizontal positioning that actually makes it look like the car is squinting at you as it comes down the road. The front fenders are more muscular, but the rear haunches see the most change; now wider and more commanding than below. The front spoiler element continues along the sides to help create more central downforce and cut back on turbulence from the rear wheels. Around back is a sleeker pair of taillights, sportier rear deck, and an according-to-Hoyle rear diffuser that will leave Porsche purists crying when overtaken. All told, it’s wider, meaner, and ready for business – Not bad, Aston Martin; Not bad.

Exterior Specifications


The 2018 Aston Martin Vantage Comes to Strike Fear in Porsche and Mercedes Purists Everywhere - image 746494
Length (Inches) 175.78
Width (incl Mirror Caps) (Inches) 84.76
Width (excl Mirror Caps) (Inches) 76.45
Height (Inches) 50.11
Wheelbase (Inches) 106.45

Aston Martin Vantage Interior


The 2018 Aston Martin Vantage Comes to Strike Fear in Porsche and Mercedes Purists Everywhere - image 746505
“The interior of the new Vantage is even more revised than the exterior”

The interior of the new Vantage is even more revised than the exterior, featuring an eight-inch infotainment display floating atop the center stack and a Lambo-like control setup ahead of the center console – definitely a nice touch. The steering wheel is a flat bottom unit that is accented by an all-digital instrument cluster up front. The center console still sits high above the tunnel while the seats are lower to give that true sports-car feel and the revised door trim panels give the new Vantage a true exotic feel. Standard features include satellite navigation, DAB radio, and iPhone and iPod integration with audio streaming. Very nice 2+2 layout, if I do say so myself.

Aston Martin Vantage Drivetrain and Power Output


The 2018 Aston Martin Vantage Comes to Strike Fear in Porsche and Mercedes Purists Everywhere - image 746487
“Under the hood of this beast sits a mid-front-mounted, Biturbo, 4.0-liter V-8 that’s good for a staggering 503 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 505 pound-feet at 2,000 rpm”

Under the hood of this beast sits a mid-front-mounted, Biturbo, 4.0-liter V-8 that’s good for a staggering 503 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 505 pound-feet at 2,000 rpm. Sure, that doesn’t seem like much in a world where some cars are easily topping 700 ponies, but that’s a huge improvement over the outgoing V-8. So much so, in fact, that the new Vantage delivers 83 ponies and 144 pound-feet more than the outgoing base model. Shifting duties are handled by a ZF eight-speed automatic that sends all that torque back to an electronic differential in the middle of the rear axle. Keep in mind, folks, this is the first time an Aston Martin has had an electronic differential, so it’s a big deal and a huge step up for performance and torque distribution at the rear axle. 60 mph comes in as fast as 3.5 seconds under the right conditions and top speed, well that comes in at 195 mph – 5 mph higher than the outgoing model.
Needless to say, Aston Martin wasn’t fooling around, but this is just the tip of the iceberg. We’re busy updating our full review of the 2019 Aston Martin Vantage right now, so take a look at that in the coming days to learn even more about the second-gen Vantage!

Drivetrain Specifications


The 2018 Aston Martin Vantage Comes to Strike Fear in Porsche and Mercedes Purists Everywhere - image 746510
Engine 4.0 litre twin turbo V-8
Horsepower 503 HP @ 6,000 RPM
Torque 505 LB-FT @ 2,000-5,000 RPM
0 to 60 mph 3.5 seconds
Top Speed 195 mph
Transmission ZF eight-speed automatic transmission
Fuel tank capacity 73 litres
Min Dry Weight 3,373 Lbs
Weight Distribution 50:50

References

Aston Martin Vantage


The 2018 Aston Martin Vantage Comes to Strike Fear in Porsche and Mercedes Purists Everywhere - image 746607

Read our full review on the 2019 Aston Martin Vantage.



Read more Aston Martin news.

PostHeaderIcon Top 10 Greatest Chevrolet Corvettes Ever Built

Chevrolet just introduced the latest Corvette ZR1, setting a new benchmark for the iconic sports car. Not only the quickest and most powerful Corvette ever built, the new ZR1 is also the most aerodynamic iteration of the car and comes with features usually found on high-end supercars. It definitely eclipses every road-legal Corvette built to date in terms of performance. It also wins battles with every classic Vette I can think of, but it’s not the only Corvette that made a massive impact upon arrival. It’s rather difficult to talk about Corvettes from the past with a car as incredible as the new ZR1 on its way to showrooms, but I compiled a list of iconic models that deserve to share the same celebrity page with this supercharged monster.

I’ve made my picks based on a few factors. For starters, I wanted to include at least one model from each generation, so this list goes back to the original C1. I also took horsepower and performance in consideration, as well as market impact and production figures, favoring limited-edition models that evolved into prized collectibles. I also included a concept, an experimental racing project that barely made it out of the factory, as well as an aftermarket upgrade, just to add an extra bit of flavor to the selection. Check it out below.

Continue reading for the full story.

1955 Corvette V8


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“The 4.3-liter V-8 engine enabled the C1 Corvette to compete with the then-new Ford Thunderbird”

The first-generation Corvette is now regarded as one of the most iconic classic cars out there, but the truth is that the C1 was very close to be discontinued after only a couple of years on the market. Which would have put an end to the Corvette nameplate and all the great cars that followed. Launched with an inline six engine that wasn’t particularly exciting, the first Corvette was also plagued with water leaks, doors that wouldn’t stay shut, and shoddy quality of the otherwise innovative fiberglass body. These issues and the negative customer reaction caused sales to plummet, with only 2,500 units sold in 1954. Things didn’t look good for the Corvette, and Chevy was already thinking about pulling the plug.

But things changed dramatically in 1955. While not yet part of the Corvette project, Zora Arkus-Duntov insisted that the brand’s new 4.3-liter, small-block V-8 was added to the car. The 195-horsepower unit not only improved the Corvette’s marketing and image but also enabled it to compete with the then-new Ford Thunderbird. The 0 to 60 sprint dropped from 11 seconds to a more impressive 8.5 seconds with the V-8, while the three-speed manual transmission turned into a true driver’s car. As a result, Duntov was also named the director of high-performance vehicle design and development for Chevrolet in 1956.

1962 Corvette Grand Sport


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“Zora Duntov initiated a program to produce a lightweight version of the second-gen Corvette”

Just like the 1955 V8, the Corvette Grand Sport was also the work of Zora Duntov. However, this project was entirely different, as the Grand Sport was conceived as a full-fledged race car. Chevrolet was no longer involved in motorsport in the early 1960s, and Duntov was converned about Ford and its tremendous Shelby Cobra, which was already hitting the race track with good results. Zora initiated a program to produce a lightweight version of the second-gen Corvette, set to go on sale for the 1963 model year, and planned to build 125 units to allow the car to be homologated for grand touring racing. The program was kept secret, mostly because GM executives didn’t want Chevy involved in motorsport. But they found out soon enough and stopped the project after Duntov built only five cars. Fortunately, they weren’t destroyed, and went on to compete and even win a few improtant races. Powered by V-8 engines rated at up to 550 horsepower, the Grand Sport was driven by famed race car drivers such as Roger Penske, A.J. Foyt, and Jim Hall.

Due to its interesting story and limited production run, the Grand Sport is among the most coveted and valuable Corvettes ever built.

1961 Corvette Mako Shark


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“Designed by Larry Shinoda and Bill Mitchell, the Mako Shark previewed the second-generation Corvette”

Like the Grand Sport, the Mako Shark isn’t a production car. Designed in 1961 by Larry Shinoda and Bill Mitchell, the Mako Shark was the concept car that previewed the second-generation Corvette. As the name suggests, it was partly inspired by the shortfin mako shark, the fastest-swimming shark in the world, capable of bursts of speed of up to 42 mph. A tremendous success on the auto show circuit, the Marko Shark, was sleek, had side-exit exhaust pipes, and its paint scheme matched that of an actual shark with the blue-gray upper surface gently blending into the white underside. The C2-generation Corvette that followed in 1963, also known as the Sting Ray, borrowed several design cues from the Mako Shark, including the muscular fenders, the windscreen, and the pointy front fascia. The concept was redesigned in 1965 into the Mako Shark II, which eventually went on to inspire the third-generation Corvette, launched in 1968.

1967 Corvette Sting Ray L88


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“Not only more powerful, the L88 engine was also closer to a pure racing powerplant than any other engine Chevy had ever offered”

Significantly more aggressive than its predecessor design-wise, the C2-gen Corvette also spawned higher performance versions. The L88 was the C2 to end all C2s and arrived in the generation’s final year on the market, 1967. The badge came from the engine, as the L88 was a beefed-up variant of the 7.0-liter V-8 that Chevrolet introduced in 1966. Not only more powerful, it was also closer to a pure racing powerplant than any other engine Chevy had ever offered in a production car. It had lightweight heads and bigger ports, hotter camshaft, stratospheric 12.5:1 compression, an aluminum radiator, small-diameter flywheel, and a single huge Holley four-barrel carburetor. The very high compression ratio required 103-octane racing fuel, which wasn’t widely available at U.S. service stations. Output was officially rated at 430 horsepower, but word has it that the L88 was actually capable of around 560 horses at 6,400 rpm. Naturally, the L88 didn’t come cheap. With the Positraction, transistorized ignition, heavy-duty suspension, power brakes, and radio and heater delete options made mandatory with the package, the L88 added an extra $1,500 over the base $4,240 price. As a result, only 20 units were sold, which makes the L88 one of the rarest Corvettes ever built.

1969 Corvette ZL1


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“The first-ever ZL1 was offered for the 1969 model year only”

The third-generation Corvette was introduced in 1968, just as the muscle cars were getting bigger and becoming more powerful. This came to a halt in the early 1970s when the oil crisis and new regulations nearly killed the high-power V-8, but the C3 had a few good years. The Corvette ZL1 is arguably the most exotic example. Now sporting a sleeker, even more aggressive design, the C3 also spawned new engines and upgrade packages. The ZL1 was offered for the 1969 model year only and added an all-aluminum, 7.0-liter big-block which was developed primarily for racing. The engine was officially rated at 430 horsepower, but testing revealed that output was actually at around 460 horsepower. The ZL1 was quick enough to run the quarter mile in 12.1 seconds. But much like the L88, it was highly expensive, adding a whopping $4,700 to the Corvette. It’s probably why only three were sold. The main reason why I’ve included the ZL1 on this list is that it was the fastest production car ever made back in 1969.

1988 Corvette Callaway Sledgehammer


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“The Sledgehammer had a top speed of 254.7 mph!”

For our next Corvette, I’m going to step away from the Chevrolet-made cars. I know it’s not exactly, but a Top 10 Corvette list without the Sledgehammer is incomplete. If you’re not familiar with Callaway Cars, it was established in 1977, and it’s been modifying engines ever since. Callaway began altering Corvettes in the 1980s and became famous when its twin-turbo kit for the C4 became a dealer option. The Callaway Twin Turbo Corvette was introduced in 1987, but it took the firm one more year to produce its most radical design yet. Based on the highly criticized C4-generation Corvette, which hit the market with delays and various issues, the Sledgehammer actually helped te fourth-gen car gain some notoriety. Heavily modified on the outside, the Sledgehammer was more than just a pimped-up Corvette.

The aggressive exterior was backed by a massively powerful drivetrain that sent no less than 898 horsepower and 772 pound-feet of torque to the wheels. The incredible output was achieved using a NASCAR-spec engine block with Mahle pistons and forged connecting rods, as well as a Brodix aluminum head and a pair of turbochargers from Turbonetics. The suspension was designed with help from Carroll Shelby, while the 17-inch aluminum wheels were wrapped in bespoke Goodyear tires. The sprint to 60 mph took only 3.9 seconds, while the quarter-mile run took just 10.6 clicks. These were incredible figures for the 1980s and are still impressive in 2017.

“The sprint to 60 mph took only 3.9 seconds, while the quarter-mile run took just 10.6 clicks”

But the Sledgehammer’s most impressive feat is its top. In October 1988, with John Lingenfelter behind the wheel, Callaway’s super coupe hit a record top speed of 254.7 mph. Although the benchmark wasn’t filed as a Guinness world record due to Sledgehammer being a unique car, it stood as the world’s fastest road-legal car until 2010, when Bugatti hit 267.8 mph with the Veyron Super Sport. The standard Veyron is actually almost one mph slower than the Sledgehammer. And we’re talking about a car built in 2005 with far more modern technology.

And that’s why the Sledgehammer deserves a place on this list.

1990 Corvette ZR-1


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“Co-developed with Lotus, the ZR-1 set a number of endurance world records”

While the Sledgehammer wasn’t available for purchase, the Callaway Twin Turbo package was, and its success prompted Chevrolet to build its very own high-performance version of the Corvette. The opportunity to do this arrived in the mid-to-late 1980s after General Motors acquired Group Lotus. The Corvette division approached the British firm with the idea of developing the world’s fastest production car based on the C4 Corvette and Lotus went on to design the iconic LT5 engine. Using an aluminum block, four overhead camshafts, 32 valves, and a unique air management system, the V-8 generated 375 horsepower, 125 horses more than the standard Vette at the time. In addition to the engine, Lotus also helped design the ZR-1’s braking and steering systems. The 5.7-liter V-8 engine was upgraded to 405 horsepower and 385 pound-feet of torque when the C4 Corvette was updated in 1993. When it first hit the market, the ZR-1 needed only 4.4 seconds to hit 60 mph, while its top speed was estimated at more than 180 mph. The coupe actually set a number of world records, including the 12 Hours Endurance at 175.5 mph, the 24 Hours Endurance at 175.8 mph, and running for 5,000 miles at 279.6 mph. The C4 ZR-1 was the first vehicle to wear the badge since 1971, but as we’ll see below, it wasn’t the last.

2001 Corvette Z06


Top 10 Greatest Chevrolet Corvettes Ever Built - image 745749
“The C5 Z06 reintroduced the Z06 badge and turned the Corvette into a modern, track-oriented vehicle”

Although it dates back to 1963, when it was created as a performance package that circumvented an SCCA racing ban, the Z06 badge was shortlived until the 2000s. Launched as a spiritual successor to the C4 ZR-1, the C5 Z06 had a similar approach. The exterior was closely related to the standard model, but the drivetrain was different. The new LS6 engine was a higher output, tuned version of the regular LS1 and initially developed 385 horsepower. This was less than the ZR-1, but the Z06 was much lighter, which gave it a superior power-to-weight ratio. It was also significantly more affordable, which helped it become a more mainstream proposition. The 2002 update increased power to 405 horsepower, which resulted in a 0-to-60 mph sprint of 3.9 seconds and a quarter-mile run of 12.4 clicks. A carbon-fiber hood introduced with the Commemorative Edition made the Z06 even lighter. Production ended in 2004 as Chevrolet began working on the C6-generation car. While the following Z06 models were faster and more powerful, I went with the C5 model because this was the car that reintroduced the Z06 badge and turned the Corvette into a modern, track-oriented vehicle.

2009 Corvette ZR1


2009 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 - image 221025
“The C6-gen ZR1 was unveiled with a supercharged, 6.2-liter LS9 V-8”

Although the Z06 was first introduced as a spiritual successor to the ZR-1, the two nameplates eventually became regular versions of the Corvette beginning with the C6-generation model. While the Z06 returned in 2006 and was built until 2013, the ZR1 made a comeback in 2009, after a 19-year hiatus. While the Z06 had a 7.0-liter LS7 under the hood, the C6-gen ZR1 was unveiled with a supercharged, 6.2-liter LS9 V-8. The mill produced 638 horsepower, 133 more than the Z06, and at the time of its launch, it was the most powerful Corvette ever made at the factory. It was also the quickest, needing only 3.4 seconds to hit 60 mph from a standing start. Its top speed was rated at 205 mph, another record for a Corvette. It also made extensive use of carbon-fiber, having the roof, engine hood, fenders, front splitter, and rocker moldings made from the lightweight material. It was also equipped with the larger wheels ever used on a production Corvette, carbon-ceramic brakes, and Magnetic Selectiv Ride Control with sensors to automatically adjust stiffness levels based on road conditions and vehicle movement. A supercar in its own right!

2018 Corvette ZR1


2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 - image 744658
“Although it's the last vehicle on my list, it's the most extreme Corvette ever built”

Finally, we’re moving on to the latest Corvette ZR1, unveiled in October 2017. Although it’s the last vehicle on my list, it’s the most extreme Corvette ever built. A significant upgrade in terms of exterior design compared to the current Z06, the ZR1 sports the most comprehensive aerodynamic package Chevy has ever created for a road car. On top of the redesigned front bumper and the massive bulge on the engine hood, the ZR1 comes with two distinct rear wings. There’s a standard low wing that delivers up to 70-percent more downforce and the highest top speed and a motorsport-spec high wing that provides maximum downforce for the quickest lap times. That’s a first for any Corvette. Under the hood, lurks the most powerful engine Chevy has built to date. Dubbed LT5, the 6.2-liter V-8 uses a massive supercharger to generate a whopping 755 horsepower and 715 pound-feet of torque. It sprints from 0 to 60 mph in less than three seconds and tops out at more than 210 mph, yet another record for the Corvette. The new ZR1 is also the first vehicle of its kind to use an automatic transmission thanks to the eight-speed option offered alongside the standard seven-speed manual.

This concludes my list of the greatest Corvettes ever built. A list I probably won’t alter until Chevy introduces the much-rumored mid-engined Vette. I’m well aware that this list is very subjective and that many other iconic Corvettes weren’t mentioned, so feel free to add your own in the comments section.

PostHeaderIcon The Devel-Sixteen is Here, but it’s Still just a Prototype

For years, we’ve been teased by Devel about its 300-mph, 5000-horsepower, supercar and the company has finally delivered at the 2017 Dubai motor show. The car isn’t exactly in “production” form quite yet and won’t be complete for another 12 to 18 months, with testing, but it’s much closer than the plastic, Hot-Wheels-wannabe car we saw a few years back.

The Devel Sixteen Comes Correct but Still Lacking

Truth be told, this revised prototype is much more believable, and now that we’ve seen video of the engine hitting some crazy horsepower figures (5,007 in the latest video on a company dyno,) there’s a lot of merit behind the car that could not only break the 300-mph barrier but put vehicles from Koenigsegg, Buggati, and McLaren to shame. As of now, one of the biggest concerns is where Devel can source tires from, considering a pair of rubbers that can handle speeds as high as 300 mph are far and few between – it’s the reason why the Bugatti Chiron hasn’t been able to reach its full potential.

Devel-Sixteen Engine on the Dyno

On that note, Devel says it’s “considering” two tire manufacturers, but declined to mention names in a discussion with CNN in Dubai. Unfortunately, there’s more bad news too – the Devel-Sixteen won’t be street legal and is intended to be more of a dragster or track car. Of course, we’re talking about a 12.3-liter with a quad, 81 mm, turbo setup that delivers a gut-wrenching 5,007 horsepower, so that’s not that big of a surprise – it’s essentially a jet-fighter on wheels.


The Devel-Sixteen is Here, but it's Still just a Prototype - image 744099

Devel Sixteen Prototype Specifications

  • 12.3 LITER V16 QUAD TURBO
  • 5,007 HP, 36 PSI
  • 3,519 LB-FT @ 6,600 RPM, 36 PSI
  • 3,006 HP @ 6,900 RPM, 20 PSI (92 93 PUMP GAS – DAILY USE)
  • 2,407 TORQUE @ 6,400 RPM, 20 PSI
  • DEVEL SIXTEEN BILLET ENGINE BLOCK
  • DEVEL SIXTEEN CYLINDER HEADS
  • DEVEL SIXTEEN CRANKSHAFT
  • DEVEL SIXTEEN BILLET CAMSHAFT (ROLLER CAMSHAFT, STREET TUNE)
  • 2 VALVEs PER CYLINDER (32 TITANIUM VALVE)
  • 81 MM QUAD TURBO

Other Models are on the Way


The Devel-Sixteen is Here, but it's Still just a Prototype - image 744098

Sometimes you have to roll with the punches, and the fact that the Sixteen isn’t going to be street legal is a bit of a bummer. But, not all hope is lost. See, the manufacturer also opened a whole new can of worms. Apparently, Devel is working on two more models, one with a V-8 that will deliver some 2,000 horsepower and another with a V-16 and quad turbos that will deliver some 3,000 horsepower. Projected speeds have yet to be mentioned, but you can probably guess somewhere around 245 mph and 280 mph, respectively.

On that note, however, don’t get too excited unless you have very, very deep pockets. Devel says the price for the V-8 model with start at $1.6 million while the V-16 model will start at $1,8 million. There are no plans to limit production of either model at this time, and both are expected to be 100-percent road legal. As for where the Sixteen or it’s slightly less-powerful children will make their high-speed debuts, that remains a mystery, but the man behind that brand has said “the U.S., the U.K, Germany… it could be anywhere.” I don’t know about you, but that sounds pretty promising and quite exciting too. We’re following the Devel brand closely, so check back soon for a full review on the Devel-Sixteen and all breaking news as it happens.

References


The Devel-Sixteen is Here, but it's Still just a Prototype - image 745558

Read our full story on the Devel Sixteen Debut.


2014 Devel Sixteen - image 532029

Read our full review on the 2014 Devel Sixteen Prototype.

PostHeaderIcon BMW i8

2020 BMW i8

Launched in 2014, the i8 was on BMW’s drawing boards since the mid-2000s. First unveiled as the Vision Efficient Dynamics in 2009, it was updated to the i8 Concept in 2011, before being showcased as a production-ready prototype in 2013. In 2012, BMW also revealed a Spyder concept car. More than three years have passed since its official debut, and the i8 is already a big hit with hybrid sports car enthusiasts. Despite this, BMW has yet to offer a mid-cycle update like it did with the i3, but it’s planning to launch a drop-top, Spyder version at the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show, Whether more oomph is on the table for the current i8 is still a mystery, but there’s a lot of buzz about a significantly more powerful next-generation model flying around for quite some time.

Given BMW’s current strategy, a brand-new i8 isn’t likely to arrive sooner than 2020, so information about the upcoming sports car is scant, to say the least. However, there have been claims that the new i8 will go fully electric and the I Vision Dynamics concept that was unveiled in 2017 likely previews the sports car’s new design. I gathered all the information available in the speculative review below, while our designer created a rendering of what the second-generation i8 might look like. Keep reading to find out all the details we have so far and stay tuned for updates on this car.

Continue reading to learn more about the second-generation BMW i8.

Exterior

  • Fresh design
  • Styling based on I Vision Dynamics concept
  • EV-style front grille
  • New lighting technology
  • Sporty coupe shape
  • Unique in the BMW lineup
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    right
    “While the BMW i8 still looks fresh in 2017, this may not be the case in 2020”

    Needless to say, the current i8 is one sexy sports car design-wise. The low nose, the wide stance, and the aggressive headlamp and front grille layout make it unique in the current BMW lineup and give it a strong resemblance to the iconic M1. The side cues are equally dramatic, especially the way the line that separates the door from the side skirt goes upward to create the massive rear haunches and then blends into the taillights. The rear fascia also reminds of the BMW M1, but the i8 is more than just a rendition of the classic sports car. It’s feels modern and it’s aggressive. It’s basically a supercar design with lightweight, sports car performance.

    But while the i8 still looks fresh in 2017, this may not be the case in 2020. Sports car makers are rolling out increasingly wilder designs, so BMW will have to up the ante and come up with an even more exciting exterior. While there’s no clue as to what the new i8 might look like, I do believe that the I Vision Dynamics concept will be used as inspiration. And needless to say, it’s a fantastic resource for a brand-new sports car.


    2017 BMW i Vision Dynamics Concept - image 731936
    “Our rendering borrows heavily from the I Vision Dynamics concept”

    Our rendering borrows heavily from the show car. Although it previews a competitor for the Tesla Model S, the I Vision Dynamics employs many styling cues that would look great on an aggressive two-door. Our designer transferred almost the entire front fascia onto the next-gen i8. The twin-kidney grille is obviously taller than any other production BMW and it stands out by missing a conventional mesh grille and for having blue highlights on the chrome trim. I think that the blue trim will become a production feature and that a grille-less twin-kidney is very likely given that the next i8 will be an all-electric car. We also borrowed most of the bumper from the concept car, but revised the openings and the side wings for better aerodynamics. The headlamps are a unique design that blend current BMW LED units with futuristic elements seen on recent concept.

    Move to the sides, and you’ll notice that our rendering retains the current i8’s shape and size. However, the angular lines are less aggressive, and the rear haunches are a bit more elegant. I think BMW will go with something similar in an effort to position the new i8 in both the high-performance and luxury market. Look for a redesigned rear end too, but nothing radical. Although the i8 may employ some features from other production BMWs — obviously with a unique touch — it should also come with active aerodynamics, such as a retractable wing and a diffuser that adapts to driving conditions.

    Interior

    • New, exclusive design
    • Added luxury features
    • Larger infotainment screen
    • Redesigned instrument cluster
    • Leather and Alcantara upholstery
    • Sports seats

    2020 BMW i8 - image 521247

    Note: current BMW i8 pictured here.

    “Some new high-end tech should also find its way inside the cabin”

    It’s really hard to tell what the next-gen i8 has in store for its customers inside the cabin, but it’s safe to say that it will sport a high-tech design with plenty of premium features. The dashboard design will be unique to this car, so don’t expect any of the styling cues seen inside the 3 Series or the X5. Now I’m not saying that the two models are a dull place to spend time in, but the current i8 plays in a far superior league, and this shouldn’t change with the new sports car.

    Some new high-end tech should also find its way into the cabin. I’m thinking bigger screens for the infotainment system and instrument cluster and a highly adjustable, sports steering wheel. Gesture control will be standard, alongside a wide range of features that will enable you to control and monitor the vehicle’s electric driverain.


    2020 BMW i8 - image 522671

    Note: current BMW i8 pictured here.

    “Expect the new i8 to come with acres of leather and Alcantara in standard trim”

    As far as materials go, expect the new i8 to come with acres of leather and Alcantara in standard trim. Aluminum and carbon-fiber will cover most of the remaining surfaces, but the latter is likely to be part of an optional, more expensive package. The leather seats should feature heavy bolstering for spirited driving, but if rumors about the drivetrain prove to be true, BMW should offer a more track oriented package with race-inspired, lightweight seats wrapped in Alcantara. Despite the i8 being a full-fledged sports car, it will have many of the amenities found in larger luxury BMWs, including air-conditioning, heating, a premium sound system, and the latest in terms of connectivity and Wi-Fi.

    The new i8 should also include a range of cabin features made from renewable materials — to showcase the company’s efforts toward a more sustainable future — as well as some industry-first technologies. But we will find out more about that closer to launch.

    Drivetrain

    • All-electric drivetrain
    • Three electric motors
    • Around 750 horsepower
    • All-wheel-drive
    • Rear-axle steering
    • Active suspension system

    2020 BMW i8 - image 518243

    Note: Drivetrain of the current BMW i8 pictured here.

    “While the current i8 gets its juice from a gasoline-electric drivetrain, the next-gen car will use electricity only”

    This is where it gets very interesting. While the current i8 gets its juice from a gasoline-electric drivetrain, the next-gen car will use electricity only. This rumor has been flying around for more than a year now and, while there’s no official confirmation, it makes sense given that BMW wants to roll out electric cars in the next decade. The change will be quite dramatic.

    The German sports features quite a peculiar drivetrain, bringing together a turbocharged, 1.5-liter three-cylinder engine, a six-speed automatic transmission, and two electric motors. I say “peculiar” because three-cylinder engines are far from common. Granted, the three-pot is no slouch at 228 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque, but it’s not the kind of output that puts “sports” ahead of “car.” But thanks to the electric motors strapped to the front and rear axles, total output sits at a more appealing 357 horses and 420 pound-feet.

    “Each motor will reportedly crank out well in excess of 250 horsepower, with total output to sit at a whopping 750 horses”

    Granted, those aren’t supercar figures, but at only 3,300 pounds, the i8 is quite agile. Hitting 60 mph from a standing start takes four seconds, while top speed is governed at 155 mph. As our own Mark McNabb pointed out in his driven review, the i8 needs a bit more oomph, and the main reason why I agree is that a sports car of this caliber should be quicker than the BMW M4. And the i8 isn’t. But this will change with the next-generation model.

    For the new i8, BMW will drop the gasoline engine and will add a third electronic. Actually, it will add three brand-new electric motors that will draw juice from a significantly larger battery. Each motor will reportedly crank out well in excess of 250 horsepower, with total output to sit at a whopping 750 horses. That’s more than double the oomph you get with the current i8! No word on torque yet, but knowing how much pound-feet electric motors are capable of, it’s safe to assume that the i8 could get closer to 1,000.


    2020 BMW i8 - image 745538
    “The i8 will also get rear-axle steering and an active suspension system”

    The new drivetrain layout will put two motors on the rear axle and one up front, which will make the i8 all-whee-drive. On top of that, the i8 will also get rear-axle steering, a feature that’s already available in some Porsche, Ferrari, and Lamborghini sports cars. Torque vectoring and a new active suspension system are also on the table. So not only will it be significantly quicker — expect a 0-to-60 sprint of less than three seconds — it will also perform better at the track. New Nurburgring record for electric cars, anyone?

    But what about range? Reports say that the new drivetrain and larger battery will enable the i8 to return 300 miles per charge. That would represent a 10-mile drop compared to the current hybrid drivetrain, but it’s a solid figure for a fully electric car. For reference, the current i8 runs for only 15 miles on electricity alone according to the EPA. In Europe, it’s rated at 23 miles.

    Current BMW i8 2020 BMW i8
    Gasoline Engine BMW TwinPower Turbo 1.5-Liter Three-Cylinder
    Electric Motor Hybrid synchronous motor with power Three electric motors
    Total Output 362 horsepower 750 HP
    Total Torque 420 Pound-Feet 1,000 LB-FT
    Transmission Six-Speed Automatic
    Acceleration (0-60 mph) 4.2 Sec., Est 3 seconds
    Top Speed 155 MPH 200 mph
    Total Range 310 Miles (372 Miles w/ ECO PRO) 300 miles

    Prices


    2020 BMW i8 - image 745539

    The current i8 is the second most expensive BMW on offer as of 2017. Priced from $143,400, it’s superseded only by the M760i, which costs $156,700 before options. Add the available packages and options to the i8, and the sticker jumps to $152,344. Far from affordable, but the new second-generation sports car will be much more expensive. The new technology, the new platform, and the all-electric drivetrain will add to the final cost of the car, which could move closer to the $200,000 mark.

    Competition

    The electric supercar car market is rather slim as of 2017, but with more and more automakers jumping on the bandwagon, this segment will be far more populated a few years from now. Due to its hybrid nature, the current i8 competes against the Acura NSX, but this will change when the all-electric version arrives. The Nio EP9 looks to be a good proposition, but the Chinese EV is set to be manufactured in limited numbers, and it could be discontinued soon. Same goes for the Rimac Concept_One, but automakers like Mercedes-Benz, Audi (the Germans recently discontinued the R8 e-tron), and Porsche could launch their own competitors for the i8 in a few years.

    Nio EP9


    You Won't Believe Which Autonomous Car is the Fastest in the World - image 707013

    The EP9 hit the market out of the blue. It’s designed by recently founded Chinese company NextEV, boasts a tremendous amount of power, and lapped the Nurburgring track quicker than any other production car, breaking a record that stood strong since 2009. Design-wide, the Nio EP9 is a full-fledged supercar and looks as if it was designed for the prototype class of the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Power comes from four separate electric motors, each creating in excess of 300 horsepower. Total output is rated at 1,341, which is far more impressive than the next-generation BMW i8, but it’s worth mentioning that the EP9 is also significantly heavier at 3,825 pounds. The sprint to 60 mph takes 2.7, which is as quick as it gets, but the i8 should come close thanks to its tremendous power-to-weight ratio. The EP9 is also likely to win the top speed battle at 195 mph, but it won’t be able to match the Bimmer’s range at 265 miles per charge. The Chinese EV is also ridiculously expensive, coming in at around $1.2 million before options.

    Conclusion


    2020 BMW i8 - image 744860

    When we drove the BMW i8 back in August 2017, we were impressed by its looks, high-end technology, and solid drivetrain figures. But we also discovered that it was rather uncomfortable getting in and out of the cabin and that it also lacked the luxuries found in the big BMW sedans. But the next-generation model should fix that, as BMW now has all the information it needs to provide a sports car that’s attractive in just about any department. And with a more powerful drivetrain that’s also green and provides a solid range, the i8 should become an even more successful vehicle. Despite having an exorbitant price tag.

    • Leave it
      • Likely expensive price tag
      • Not yet confirmed for production

    References

    BMW i8


    2015 BMW i8 - image 522680

    Read our full review on the current BMW i8.


    BMW i Vision Dynamics Previews Tesla Model S Fighter - image 730734

    Read our full review on the 2017 BMW i Vision Dynamics Concept.


    2017 BMW i8 – Driven - image 732595

    Read our full driven review on the 2017 BMW i8.


    2018 BMW i8 Spyder - image 716249

    Read our full speculative review on the 2018 BMW i8 Spyder.

    PostHeaderIcon Chevrolet Corvette ZR1

    2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1

    The seventh-generation Chevrolet Corvette was unveiled in early 2013 and introduced for the 2014 model year. It replaced the nine-year-old C6 and essentially changed the way enthusiasts viewed the Corvette thanks to its significant upgrades. Besides the more angular and aggressive styling, the C7 also received a revamped interior that no longer made use of cheap plastics. The cabin was finally moved into premium territory, putting an end to decades of criticism. While it continued to use an all-engine V-8, the Corvette gained a supercharged unit with the Z06 badge. Come 2017, and Chevrolet took things to a whole new level with a new ZR1 model, the fourth since the early 1970s. Powered by a brand-new V-8, it’s the ZR1 with highest power, greatest track performance, and most advanced technology in its production history!

    It took Chevrolet some four years to revise the range-topping ZR1, but the wait was definitely worth it. The new supercharged coupe surpasses every rumor we’ve been through so far with a significantly revised exterior, a menacing, race-inspired rear wing, and a supercharged V-8 engine that was designed on a clean sheet. After years of speculation, dozens of camouflaged test cars, and rumors that GM is also working on a mid-engined Corvette, the ZR1 is here to prove that Chevrolet isn’t yet willing to give up on its fantastic tradition and that the ZR1 legend will live on for a few more years. And, for the very first time since the Corvette was introduced more than five decades ago, it’s safe to say that Chevrolet finally has a competitor for the high-end supercars out there. Keep reading to find out why.

    Continue reading to learn more about the Chevrolet Corvette ZR1.

    Exterior

    • Redesigned front bumper with large intakes
    • Bigger carbon-fiber splitter
    • New engine hood with bulged center section
    • Unique wheels
    • Side sill extensions
    • Big rear wing
    • Two aerodynamic packages
    • Sebring Orange package
    • Most aggressive ZR1 exterior ever!

    2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 - image 744525
    “Up front, the headlamps and the nose are the only features that remind of the C7 Corvette”

    As suspected since we saw the first prototypes, the ZR1 arrived with a ton of new features compared to the Z06, including a massive change in the aerodynamics department.

    Up front, the headlamps and the nose are the only features that remind of the C7 Corvette. The bumper was redesigned on a clean sheet. The wide intake seen on other Corvettes is gone, replaced by a three-piece layout with a narrower opening in the middle and two massive intakes onto the sides. A honeycomb-like mesh complements all three, but the holes are larger than usual, which gives the bumper a menacing stance. The splitter is bigger than any similar unit seen on a Corvette before and puts even that of the race-spec C7.R to shame.


    2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 - image 744533
    “The engine hood is also new, and its center section is insanely tall”

    The engine hood is also new, and its center section is insanely tall. Designed this way in order to make way for the larger supercharger, it has a custom carbon-fiber “halo” opening. As we move onto the sides, when can see new vertical fins on the side splitter, redesigned vents on the front fenders, and more aggressive side skirts. Around back, everything seems to be the same below the decklid. The ZR1 keeps the four-pipe, center-mounted layout and the same diffuser, with only a “ZR1” badge setting it apart from the Z06. However, there’s a new wing to talk about. Actually, there’s two because Chevrolet offers two wind tunnel-designed aero packages.

    First up is the standard low wing, which delivers the highest top speed and helps generate up to 70-percent more downforce than the Z06. Although low, the wing is pretty wide and makes the ZR1 look like a full-fledged race car. Things become even more aggressive with the optional High Wing package. Replacing the low wing with a much higher, new-design unit, this bundle provides an estimated 950 pounds of downforce. This package basically offers maximum downforce on the track for the quickest lap times — Chevy says it comes with about 60 percent more downforce than the Z06 with the available Z07 Performance Package.

    left
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    “The ZR1 delivers 60 percent more downforce than the Z06 with the available Z07 Performance Package.”

    Both wings are tied into the chassis, like on the Corvette Racing C7.R racecar, for enhanced strength and stability. Both ZR1 models also feature a downforce-enhancing front underwing.

    Alongside these performance packages, Chevy also launched the Sebring Orange Package with the ZR1. The bundle adds new design features inside and out, including Sebring Orange Tintcoat exterior color and orange brake calipers and rocker panel and splitter accents stripes.

    All told, the ZR1 is not only the meanest Corvette ever built, but also the most aggressive vehicle wearing a Chevrolet badge.

    Exterior Dimensions

    Wheelbase (Inches) 106.7
    Overall Length (Inches) 176.9
    Overall Width (Inches) 77.4
    Overall Height (Inches) 48.6
    Track front/rear (Inches) 63.6/62.5

    THE COMPETITION


    2018 Porsche 911 GT2 RS - image 721894
    “If you're looking for a race-inspired design, the Porsche 911 GT2 RS is a solid proposition!”

    There aren’t many sports cars out there that have such big wings and are still legal on public roads. One good example is the Porsche 911 GT2 RS, but it’s not as powerful as the Corvette ZR1. And it’s not as menacing as the Chevy on the outside either. Sure, it has plenty of aero bits, and it looks pretty similar to the company’s track-only models, but it still has that organic, somewhat polished look modern 911s are known for. It’s nowhere near as angular as the Corvette ZR1, which feels a bit more modern so to speak. However, if you’re looking for a race-inspired design, this Porsche is a solid proposition!


    2016 Ferrari 488 GTB - image 620088

    You can get a more aggressive design with the Ferrari 488 GTB, but only if you’re willing to pay in excess of $200,000 to take one home. Comparing a Ferrari to a Corvette might be upsetting to some purists, mostly because the 488 GTB comes with a mid-engine configuration and significantly more luxury and cachet, but the ZR1 looks ready to give the 488 GTB a run for its money as far as design goes. Although it also lacks a rear wing, the GTB sports a fresh styling language that combines elements from the previous 458 Italia and the LaFerrari supercar. While the front fascia and most of the side panels look rather plain, the wide rear haunches and race-inspired rear end with classic looking round taillights give the Ferrari a unique appearance.

    Interior

    • Carbon-fiber steering wheel inserts
    • Carbon-fiber dash and center stack
    • Leather and Alcantara seats
    • Optional Nappa leather
    • Competition sport seats
    • Performance Data Recorder
    • Premium Bose audio system
    • Orange accents
    • Bronze aluminum trim

    2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 - image 744535
    “The first thing that catches the eye is the carbon-fiber inserts on the steering wheel”

    Upgrades aren’t as radical inside the cabin, but this is far from surprising. The Z06 gained mild updates of the standard model, so I’m not surprised to see that the ZR1 package doesn’t change all that much inside the cabin. But you will notice that this isn’t a Z06 as soon as you open the door.

    The first thing that catches the eye is the carbon-fiber inserts on the steering wheel. The seats are also wrapped in leather as standard, while Alcantara inserts remind that this ’Vette was built for quick lap times. Optionally, you can go with Competition sport seats, which are wrapped in Nappa leather and have heating and ventilation. Chevy also offers the Performance Data Recorder that allows you to record your experience at the track, and a Bose premium audio system.


    2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 - image 744524

    When equipped with the Sebring Orange Package, the ZR1 gets orange seatbelts and contrast stitching and bronze aluminum trim. The latter is visible on the steering wheel, center console, center stack, door panels, and the seats. Of course, the ZR1 also comes with plenty of carbon-fiber, particularly on the center stack and the driver-side dashboard.

    Interior Dimensions

    Headroom (Inches) 38
    Legroom (Inches) 43
    Shoulder Room (Inches) 55
    Hip Room (Inches) 54
    Curb Weight (Lbs) 3,524
    EPA passenger volume (cu. ft. ) 52
    Cargo volume (cu. ft.) 15

    THE COMPETITION


    2018 Porsche 911 GT2 RS - image 721946
    “Classy and simple, yet stylish, the Porsche’s cabin is made from high-quality materials only”

    Much like its exterior, the GT2 RS’ interior is less aggressive than the ZR1. But that’s not a bad thing. Classy and simple, yet stylish, the Porsche’s cabin is made from high-quality materials only. Somehow Porsche managed to blend the classy looks of the 911 with the sporty looks of its FIA-spec race cars. The dashboard and door panels also include leather inserts and contrast stitching, while red accents on the steering wheels, door panels, and A-pillars add a dash of color to an otherwise black layout. The race-spec seats made from carbon-fiber help set the Porsche apart, as does the full roll cage mounted in the rear compartment. Tech goodies include the Porsche Communication Management system, Porsche Connect Plus, and the Track Precision app that comes with the Chrono Package.


    2016 Ferrari 488 GTB - image 697233

    Opt for the Ferrari 488 GTB, and you’ll end up with a race-inspired cabin with tons of high-quality stuff all over the place. The Maranello-built sports car doesn’t differ much from the 911 as far as technology goes, but it’s cabin seems more suited for cruising rather than track performance.

    Drivetrain

    • New supercharged V-8 engine
    • 755 horsepower
    • 715 pound-feet of torque
    • Up to 23 mpg on the highway
    • 52-percent larger blower
    • 0 to 60 in less than 2.9 seconds
    • 210-mph top speed
    • Seven-speed manual
    • Optional eight-speed automatic
    • Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires
    • Magnetic Ride Control suspension

    2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 - image 744533
    “The potent LT4 engine in the Z06 was replaced by an even more powerful V-8 unit”

    Drivetrain upgrades are worthy of the aggressive, race-inspired exterior. The potent LT4 engine in the Z06 was replaced by an even more powerful V-8 unit. Called the LT5, probably a throwback to the V-8 engine in the C4-generation ZR1, this new V-8 is also supercharged, but the blower is 52-percent larger than in the Z06. The combo also utilizes GM’s first dual-fuel-injection, which employs primary direct injection and supplemental port injection. This not only helps the LT5 achieve its massive output, but also keeps fuel consumption relatively low at up to 23 mpg highway and up to 15 mpg city.

    Speaking of performance, the 6.2-liter V-8 cranks out a whopping 755 horsepower and 715 pound-feet of torque. That’s 105 horses and 65 pound-feet more than the Z06 and 300 horsepower and 255 pound-feet more than the standard Corvette. It’s worth noting that the ZR1 is the most powerful Chevrolet ever made. Impressive!


    2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 - image 744526
    ” The new ZR1 is the most powerful Chevrolet ever made”

    Info about how long it takes the ZR1 to hit 60 mph is not yet available, but it should be significantly quicker than the already stupid fast Corvette Z06, which reaches the benchmark in 2.95 seconds. Given the extra oomph and the revised aerodynamics, I’d say that the ZR1 can hit 60 mph in 2.8 seconds or less. Top speed is rated at “over 210 mph,” at least 25 mph more than the Corvette Z06! That’s also only seven mph less than high-end Ferrari and Lamborghini supercars.


    2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 - image 744531
    “Top speed is rated at "over 210 mph," at least 25 mph more than the Corvette Z06”

    Two transmissions are available, which is a first for the ZR1. Previous available with only manual transmissions, the new ZR1 can be had with an eight-speed automatic with paddle shifters. The manual box is Chevrolet’s latest seven-speed. Of course, both gearboxes have been optimized for the ZR1’s drivetrain.

    Cooling was also improved, with four new radiators added to increase the number of heat exchangers to 13. The High Wing package adds Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 summer-only tires and specific chassis and Magnetic Ride Control tuning for greater cornering grip.

    Drivetrain Specifications

    Type: LT5 6.2L Supercharged V-8 with direct and port injection
    Bore & stroke (in / mm) 4.06 x 3.62 / 103.25 x 92
    Block material: Cast aluminum
    Cylinder head material: Cast aluminum
    Valvetrain: Overhead valve, two valves per cylinder
    Fuel delivery: Direct and port injection
    Horsepower 755 HP @ 6,300 RPM (SAE certified)
    Torque 715 LB-FT @ 4,400 RPM (SAE certified)
    Transmission 7-speed manual with Active Rev Match
    8-speed paddle-shaft automatic
    Fuel economy city/highway 15/22 mpg (manual)
    13/23 mpg (automatic)
    Front Suspension: Short/long arm (SLA) double wishbone, cast aluminum upper and lower control arms, transverse-mounted composite spring, Magnetic Selective Ride Control
    Rear Suspension: Short/long arm (SLA) double wishbone, cast aluminum upper and lower control arms, transverse-mounted composite spring, Magnetic Selective Ride Control
    Steering Type: Variable-ratio rack-and-pinion with electric power assist
    Turning Circle (ft. / m): 39.2 / 11.6
    Brake Type: Front and rear power-assisted discs with two-piece carbon ceramic matrix rotors; fixed six-piston aluminum front calipers and fixed four-piston aluminum rear calipers
    Brake Rotor Size (in / mm): Front –15.5 / 394
    Rear –15.3 / 388
    Wheel Size: Front: 19-inch x 10.5-inch
    Rear: 20-inch x 12-inch
    Tire Size: Michelin Pilot Super Sport run-flat (std.)
    Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 (ZTK)
    Front: P285/30ZR19
    Rear: P335/25ZR20

    COMPETING PERFORMANCE


    2018 Porsche 911 GT2 RS - image 721915
    “While the 911 GT2 RS and 488 GTB aren’t as powerful as the Corvette ZR1, both are quick enough to give the American coupe a run for its money”

    While the 911 GT2 RS and 488 GTB aren’t as powerful as the Corvette ZR1, both are quick enough to give the American coupe a run for its money. Having adopted turbo technology since the 1990s, Porsche makes the quickest force-fed sports cars on the market the current 911 GT2 RS its most exciting product yet. Powered by a 3.8-liter flat-six and two turbochargers, the GT2 RS comes with 700 horsepower and 553 pound-feet of torque. Although significantly less powerful, the GT2 RS needs only 2.7 seconds to hit 60 mph, which should be quicker than the Corvette ZR1. Top speed is a mind-blowing 211 mph.


    2016 Ferrari 488 GTB - image 620087

    Likewise, the 488 GTB is pretty well suited to keep up with the ZR1. Also using a turbocharged V-8, a first for the brand’s entry-level supercar, the GTB comes with 660 horsepower and 560 pound-feet on tap, which enables it to charge to 60 mph in a scant three seconds. It might not be as quick as the ’Vette, but the upcoming GTB Scuderia should be quick enough. Top speed is rated at 203 mph, and before you say it’s not as fast as the ZR1, it’s more than you’ll ever need on public roads.

    Porsche 911 GT2 RS Ferrari 488 GTB Chevrolet Corvette ZR1
    Engine Twin-turbo 3.8-liter flat-six 3.9-liter V-8 6.2-liter V-8
    Horsepower 700 HP @ 7,000 RPM 660 HP @ 8,000 RPM 755 HP
    Torque 553 LB-FT 560 LB-FT @ 3,000 RPM 715 LB-FT
    0-to-60 mph 2.7 seconds 3.0 seconds <2.8 seconds (est.)
    Top Speed 211 mph 205 mph +210 mph

    Prices


    2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 - image 744532

    As the quickest and most powerful C7-generation Corvette, the ZR1 will also be the most expensive. But even though it will cost significantly more than the Z06, which retails from $79,400 as of August 2016, it will remain affordable compared to vehicles that deliver similar performance. I’d venture to say that Chevy will keep the ZR1’s sticker under $120,000.

    HOW MUCH FOR THE COMPETITION?

    Well, the competition is pretty expensive. Of all the cars named above, the Ferrari 488 GTB is the most affordable at around $240,000. That’s double the amount you’d have to pay for a Corvette ZR1, though. The Porsche 911 GT2 RS fetches even more, smashing the bank at $293,200 before options. However, chances are you won’t be able to buy one anytime soon as these cars sell like hot cakes. Granted, both the Porsche and Ferrari will give you a more premium interior, more features, and more ways to customize everything from upholstery to trim elements, but is it worth it? If you care about the badge, yes. If performance is all you’re interested in, the ZR1 will give you similar specs for a significantly more affordable price tag.

    Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 $120,000 (est.)
    Porsche 911 GT2 RS $293,200
    Ferrari 488 GTB $240,000
    McLaren 720S $288,845

    Competition

    McLaren 720S


    2018 McLaren 720S - image 708563

    A comparison between a Chevy and a McLaren may seem ludicrous, but the purpose is to highlight just how powerful and fast the new ZR1 really is. Developed as a replacement for the 650S, the 720S is obviously a potent supercar and has an aggressive, race-inspired design. It also has a mid-engined layout, which makes the comparison a bit unfair. Unlike the ZR1, the 720S is made almost entirely of carbon-fiber, and its cabin is far more radical in terms of design and technology. Under the hood, it hides a twin-turbo, 4.0-liter V-8 that cranks out a massive 710 horsepower and 568 pound-feet of torque. That’s a bit less than the Chevy, but the incredibly light body and chassis and the quick shifting seven-speed dual-clutch transmission push it from 0 to 60 mph in only 2.8 seconds. This should be on par with the ZR1, which is a big advantage for the American coupe. The 720S’ top speed is rated at 212 mph, which is only marginally higher than the ZR1’s. Pricing likely exceeds $280,000, but the McLaren is by far the more exclusive car here.

    Read our full story on the 2018 McLaren 720S.

    Corvette ZR1 History


    2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 - image 744656
    “The ZR1 nameplate was first used in 1970”

    The ZR1 nameplate was first used in 1970, almost two years after Chevrolet had launched the third-generation Corvette. Unlike the modern ZR1, the first version was just a drivetrain upgrade. Priced at $1,221, the option was available exclusively with the LT-1 mill and included a heavy-duty four-speed transmission, power brakes, aluminum radiator, and a revised suspension with special springs, shocks, stabilizer bar, and spindle-strut shafts. On the other hand, Chevy wanted the ZR1 to be a track-prepped option so all cars equipped with this package didn’t have power windows, power steering, air conditioning, a rear-window defogger, wheel covers, or a radio. Only 53 cars were built between 1970 and 1972.

    Chevy also offered a ZR2 package. This cost $1,747 and was essentially identical to the ZR1, but adapted for the bonkers LS-6 V-8 engine, which was rated at a whopping 425 horsepower. Only 12 were built in 1971, its only year on the market.


    2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 - image 744655
    “The C4-generation ZR-1 was designed with help from Lotus, which GM acquired in 1986”

    The ZR-1 returned in 1990, this time around with a hyphen. The revival of the badge was closerly related to the fact that General Motor acquired Lotus in 1986 and approached the British firm with the idea of creating the world’s fastest production car based on the C4-generation Corvette. A new engine was designed by the two firms; an aluminum-block V-8 called the LT5. Lotus also designed the air managemen, braking, and steering systems. Rated at 375 horsepower, the ZR-1 was one of the quickest vehicles of the era, needing only 4.4 seconds to hit 60 mph from a standing start. Top speed was rated at more than 180 mph. The ZR-1 set a few World Records in 1990, including a 24-hour endurance test at 175.8 mph, 12-hour endurance at 175.5 mph, and 5,000 miles at 173.7 mph. Although it was almost twice as expensive as the standard model, the ZR-1 was a big success and remained in production until 1995.


    2009 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 - image 221048
    “After skipping the C5, the ZR1 returned for the C6-generation Corvette, launching for the 2009 model year”

    It took the ZR another 19 years to make a comeback. After skipping the C5, the ZR1 returned for the C6-generation Corvette, launching for the 2009 model year. The ZR1 was powered by a supercharged, 6.2-liter LS9 V-8 and became the most powerful Corvette in history with a power rating of 638 horsepower and 595 pound-feet of torque. This was surpassed when Chevy launched the 650-horsepower, C7-generation Z06. The ZR1 has a carbon-fiber roof, hood, fenders, and front splitter, larger wheels, and carbon-ceramic brakes. Magnetic Selective Ride Control was also included in the package. The sprint from 0 to 60 mph took only 3.3 seconds, while top speed was estimated at 205 mph.

    Conclusion


    2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 - image 744531

    While it’s no longer the most anticipated Corvette — being superseded by the mid-engined version expected until the end of the decade — the ZR1 is definitely one of the most exciting American vehicles we will get in dealerships starting 2018. The twin-turbo engine, the immense output, and the extreme aerodynamic kit makes it a worthy competitor for the Ferrari 488 GTB and Porsche 911 GT2 RS, a feat Corvette enthusiasts have been dreaming since… well, forever. The front-engined configuration also makes it more appealing to purists who might take a few years to adjust to a mid-engine sports car wearing the Corvette badge. All we can hope is that the ZR1 won’t be the last front-engined ’Vette.

    • Leave it
      • Significantly more expensive than the Z06

    References

    Chevrolet Corvette


    2014 - 2016 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray - image 526921

    Read our full review on the 2017 Chevrolet Corvette.


    2015 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 - image 538131

    Read our full review on the 2017 Chevrolet Corvette Z06.


    2009 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 - image 221025

    Read our full review on the 2009 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1.



    Read more Chevrolet news.

    Spy Shots

    April 20, 2017 – Corvette ZR1 gets loud on the Nurburgring

    April 18, 2017 – Corvette ZR1 caught testing on the Nurburgring

    November 29, 2016 – Corvette ZR1 starts dropping camouflage

    August 12, 2016 – Corvette ZR1 out for a new testing session

    Update History

    Updated 04/18/2017: Our spy photographers caught the upcoming Corvette ZR1 out for a new testing session, this time around Nurburgring.

    Updated 12/15/2016: Based on the recent details and spy shots, we created a rendering for the upcoming Corvette ZR1. Let us know in the comments section below what do you think about it.

    Updated 11/29/2016: Our spy photographers caught the upcoming Corvette ZR1 out for a new testing session. When compared to the previous prototypes, this new one dropped significant camouflage, meaning its world debut is imminent.

    Updated 08/12/2016: The upcoming Corvette ZR1 was caught out for a new testing session, offering us another proof that a high-performance version of the seventh generation Corvette is right around the corner.

    PostHeaderIcon A Car God’s Blessing – The 2019 Chevy Corvette ZR1 is Finally Here

    2019 Chevy Corvette ZR1

    While you were not paying attention this weekend, the car God’s were busy blessing us with the 2019 Chevy Corvette ZR1 – quite literally the most powerful production model Chevy as ever introduced. Powered by a 6.2-liter, LT5, V-8, this force-fed monster delivers a butthole-puckering 755 horsepower and 715 pound-feet of torque, 105 ponies and 65 pound-feet more than the C7-gen Z06 – the most powerful and quickest Vette, well, until now, anyway. Chevy hasn’t gone into full performance details yet, but the new ZR1 can surpass 210 mph on the track. And, with the Z06 hitting the 60-mph sprint in 2.95 seconds, you can bet this beast does it in closer to 2.6 seconds. To help keep all of the muscle under control, the ZR1 is available with two aero packages, including a High Wing that can deliver as much as 950 pounds of downforce at speed.

    It’s the most powerful and fastest, and it’s also the best-looking too. There’s an all-new front fascia that has extra air channels to help keep things cool as well as four new radiators for a total of 13 heat exchangers and hopefully a solution for that questionable overheating problem Chevy has had in the past. A new, excessively aggressive hood has been added to the ZR1 and was actually a necessity thanks to that massive supercharger that force feeds air into the intake. There’s also stanchion-mounted wings available that will help keep the monster pinned to the track. So, ready to learn a little more? Check out all of the specs we have so far, and some more details about the ZR1’s crazy aerodynamics…

    • 2019 Chevy Corvette ZR1
    • Exclusive LT5, Supercharged, V-8 Engine
    • 755 HP @ 6,300 rpm and 715 lb-ft @ 4,400 rpm
    • 7-speed manual or eight-speed automatic transmission
    • 70% more downforce than base Z06
    • 60% more downforce than Z06 w/ Z07 Perf Package
    • Supercharger pushes 52% more displacement than on LT4
    • Four Extra Radiators
    • Low Wing as standard for high-speed
    • High Wing as standard for extra downforce
    • 19-inch wheels up front, 20-inch in back
    • Crazy Aerodynamics
    • Special Hood to accommodate supercharger
    • Performance data recorder, leather-trimmed seats; driver-focused cabin

    D.O.W.N.F.O.R.C.E.


    A Car God's Blessing - The 2019 Chevy Corvette ZR1 is Finally Here - image 744530
    “That Low Wing helps to deliver an insane amount of downforce, so much so, in fact, that it’s 70 percent more downforce than that of the base aero package on the Corvette Z06”

    The ZR1 may have a lot of muscle under the hood, but as you know, all of the muscle in the world doesn’t make a whole lot of difference if you don’t have stamina as well. In this case, stamina is how well the ZR1 can stick to the track. And, it’s one sticky beast, if I do say so myself. Let me break it to you this way; the standard aerodynamic package, which is designed for hitting top speed (again more than 210 mph,) comes with a Low Wing. That Low Wing, my friends, helps to deliver an insane amount of downforce, so much so, in fact, that it’s 70 percent more downforce than that of the base aero package on the Corvette Z06. Go with that adjustable High-Wing that I mentioned earlier and the ZR1 will be stuck to the track with 60 percent more downforce than that of the Corvette Z07 with the Performance Package. The front underwing is also an assist in this department, but it’s really only important because it’s a first for Chevy, but we’ll talk about that more later.


    A Car God's Blessing - The 2019 Chevy Corvette ZR1 is Finally Here - image 744533

    Like the Corvette Racing C7.R racecar, the ZR1’s wings are tied directly into the chassis, providing the utmost strength, stability, and durability in the long run. Even though Chevy hasn’t dropped all of the details on the optional aero packages, we know that the ZTK Performance Package – the one that includes that adjustable High Wing – also comes with a new front splitter with carbon fiber end caps, Specific tuning for the Magnetic Ride Control and Chassis (with a bias for corning grip,) and a fresh set of Michelin Pilot Sport 2 summer-only tires.

    What to Hear the Engine???? We Know You Do!

    All About That Interior


    A Car God's Blessing - The 2019 Chevy Corvette ZR1 is Finally Here - image 744535
    “The interior comes standard with leather-trimmed seats while sueded microfiber inserts are on the options list”

    Inside the ZR1 is where you really want to be. Since the ZR1 is the most powerful and fastest Corvette ever, it also has to be the most comfortable, right? Well, as with all Vettes, the interior is driver-focused. It comes standard with leather-trimmed seats while sueded microfiber inserts are on the options list if you want to indulge a bit. Want to splurge even more? Well, you can go for the Napa leather-trimmed seating, and there’s even a carbon fiber rimmed steering wheel to go with competition sport seats. Of course, you can get your hands on a performance data recorder, and the options list wouldn’t be complete without the choice of a Bose audio system, right? There’s still plenty more details to come in the months leading up the day the ZR1 rolls into dealers, but we still have a little more to talk about thanks to that nice little surprise package that Chevy showed off during the debut…

    Sebring Orange Design Package


    A Car God's Blessing - The 2019 Chevy Corvette ZR1 is Finally Here - image 744525

    If you were paying attention this weekend and caught the ZR1’s debut, then you know that the model we saw was a very special model. It was equipped with Chevys new Sebring Orange Design Package. Of course, the most obvious addition from this package is the Orange Tintcoat exterior paint. Other orange items include the brake calipers and the accents on the side skirts and splitter. Inside, the car gets the orange treatment applied to the seat belts, while all of the stitching is orange as well. Finally bonze aluminum trim ties the whole interior package together.

    Time is of the Essence


    A Car God's Blessing - The 2019 Chevy Corvette ZR1 is Finally Here - image 744531

    So, the fastest and most powerful Corvette to ever roll into production was just announced with a market debut expected to happen next spring. Between now and then, we’ll get even more details about standard equipment, options, and performance figures. But, to help hold you over, here’s a breakdown of all the specifications that we know about as of now, and you’ll be able to see our fully updated review of the ZR1 within 24 hours of this publication. Let us know what you think in the comments section below!

    2019 Chevy Corvette ZR1 –
    Drivetrain Specifications

    Type: LT5 6.2L Supercharged V-8 with direct and port injection
    Bore & stroke (in / mm) 4.06 x 3.62 / 103.25 x 92
    Block material: Cast aluminum
    Cylinder head material: Cast aluminum
    Valvetrain: Overhead valve, two valves per cylinder
    Fuel delivery: Direct and port injection
    Horsepower 755 HP @ 6,300 RPM (SAE certified)
    Torque 715 LB-FT @ 4,400 RPM (SAE certified)
    Transmission 7-speed manual with Active Rev Match
    8-speed paddle-shaft automatic
    Fuel economy city/highway 15/22 mpg (manual)
    13/23 mpg (automatic)
    Front Suspension: Short/long arm (SLA) double wishbone, cast aluminum upper and lower control arms, transverse-mounted composite spring, Magnetic Selective Ride Control
    Rear Suspension: Short/long arm (SLA) double wishbone, cast aluminum upper and lower control arms, transverse-mounted composite spring, Magnetic Selective Ride Control
    Steering Type: Variable-ratio rack-and-pinion with electric power assist
    Turning Circle (ft. / m): 39.2 / 11.6
    Brake Type: Front and rear power-assisted discs with two-piece carbon ceramic matrix rotors; fixed six-piston aluminum front calipers and fixed four-piston aluminum rear calipers
    Brake Rotor Size (in / mm): Front –15.5 / 394
    Rear –15.3 / 388
    Wheel Size: Front: 19-inch x 10.5-inch
    Rear: 20-inch x 12-inch
    Tire Size: Michelin Pilot Super Sport run-flat (std.)
    Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 (ZTK)
    Front: P285/30ZR19
    Rear: P335/25ZR20
    Wheelbase (Inches) 106.7
    Overall Length (Inches) 176.9
    Overall Width (Inches) 77.4
    Overall Height (Inches) 48.6
    Track front/rear (Inches) 63.6/62.5
    Headroom (Inches) 38
    Legroom (Inches) 43
    Shoulder Room (Inches) 55
    Hip Room (Inches) 54
    Curb Weight (Lbs) 3,524
    EPA passenger volume (cu. ft. ): 52
    Cargo volume (cu. ft.): 15

    References

    Chevrolet Corvette


    A Car God's Blessing - The 2019 Chevy Corvette ZR1 is Finally Here - image 744522

    Read our full review on the 2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1.


    2015 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 - image 538131

    Read our full review on the 2017 Chevrolet Corvette Z06.



    Read more Chevrolet news.

    PostHeaderIcon BMW M5: Old vs. New

    BMW M5: Old vs New

    2017 brought us the new BMW 5 Series, so it’s only fitting that 2018 brings us a new M5. We must have been good this year because Santa came early, and with him, he brought a whole slew of updates that include an updated V-8, loads of new technology, BMW’s xDrive AWD system as standard (optional outside the U.S.,) a lighter chassis, and better performance. Talk about some good news, right? Truth be told, the M5 dropped as much as 127 pounds, has more aggressive styling, an updated interior with the latest infotainment system, and an extra 38 ponies and 51 pound-feet over the outgoing model – that brings total output figures up to 591 horsepower and 553 pound-feet of torque. It can now hit 62 mph in as little as 3.4 seconds and 124 mph in just 11.1 seconds. Of course, top speed is still pinned at 155 mph, unless you get the M Driver’s package, which increases the top speed to 189 mph.

    Now, it’s set to take on other established beasts in the market that include the Mercedes-AMG E63, the Audi RS7, and the Cadillac CTS-V – I know, it’s not German, but this thing is seriously a beast, so don’t get caught slipping because it will eat you alive. With all this in mind, we decided to throw together a little infographic for the M5 to help bring its best features and qualities to the forefront. Check it all out in our visual comparison below.


    BMW M5: Old vs. New - image 742001

    BMW M5: Old vs. New - image 741998

    BMW M5: Old vs. New - image 742000

    BMW M5: Old vs. New - image 741999

    BMW M5: Old vs. New - image 741996

    BMW M5: Old vs. New - image 742002

    BMW M5: Old vs. New - image 742793

    References

    BMW M5


    2018 BMW M5 - image 727404

    Read our full review on the 2018 BMW M5.



    Read more BMW news.

    PostHeaderIcon Ferrari FXX-K Evo

    2018 Ferrari FXX-K Evo

    When a high-profile carmaker such as Ferrari launches a great supercar like the LaFerrari, it’s difficult to imagine a way to significantly improve the design. But the team from Maranello has already done it twice. First, Ferrari launched the FXX-K, a track-only LaFerrari with enhanced aerodynamics. This happened back in 2015. Two years have passed, and the Prancing Horse found a way to make the FXX-K even more brutal. It’s called the FXX-K Evo, and it has more downforce than any Ferrari to date!

    Launched at the 2017 Finali Mondiale of the Ferrari Challenge, the FXX-K Evo takes the familiar FXX-K to a new level in the same way that the Enzo-based FXX Evoluzione was a heavily upgraded FXX. Just like the FXX-K, the Evo is not homologated for road use, and production will be limited to only a few models. However, the Evo is also available as an upgrade to the standard FXX-K. The package includes many add-ons, starting with an aerodynamic kit built upon know-how obtained from the many racing series Ferrari competes in, including Formula One, GT3, GTE, and Challenge. It’s also lighter due to increased use of carbon-fiber and despite having a much larger rear wing. Yes, the FXX-K is a monster of a LaFerrari so keep reading my full review to find out more.

    Continue reading to learn more about the Ferrari FXX-K Evo.

    Exterior

    • Aggressive body kit
    • Redesigned front bumper
    • New cooling vents
    • Massive rear wing and fin
    • New diffuser
    • More downforce at high speed

    2018 Ferrari FXX-K Evo - image 741340
    “Much like any evolution of an existing design, the FXX-K Evo retains most of the design cues of the FXX-K”

    Much like any evolution of an existing design, the FXX-K Evo retains most of the design cues of the FXX-K and the LaFerrari. But the significantly redesigned aero package adds quite a few new features front and rear. The aerodynamics were modification after one year of simulations and wind tunnel testing, with Ferrari claiming that the car now boasts downforce figures that are very close to GT3 and GTE cars. Specifically, downforce improved by a whopping 23 percent over FXX K and an incredible 75 percent over the standard LaFerrari. In exact figures, the Evo generates 1,411 pounds at 124 mph, and exceeds 1,829 pounds at the car’s red-line speed. So this package basically pushes an already amazing car to the very limit.

    There aero enhancements modify the FXX-K’s appearance a lot, starting with a more menacing front end. The geometry of the sides of the front bumper was altered by hollowing out the surfaces beneath the headlamps, as well as by adding couple of flicks divided by a vertical turning vane. There’s also an additional intake ahead of the front wheels. All these elements contribute to a 10-percent downforce gain over the standard FXX-K. Ground effects were also boosted by new vortex generators in the undertray.


    2018 Ferrari FXX-K Evo - image 741335
    “The significantly redesigned aero package adds quite a few new features front and rear”

    There aren’t many visual changes to talk about onto the sides, but Ferrari added enlarged rear wheel arch vents. Also part of the package design to make the car more aerodynamic, these improved flow to the rear diffuser, which results in a five-percent downforce boost.

    Bigger changes are noticeable around the back. The main highlight is obviously the fixed rear wing. Whereas the FXX-K has those weird horizontal elements glues to the side fins, the Evo badge brought a proper wing to the supercar. But it’s by no means a regular wing. The element has a twin-profile design and a big central fin similar to those seen on prototype Le Mans cars. The central fin acts as a vertical fin, boosting stability at low yaw angles, but ut also supports the three triangular vortex generators. The latter clean the flow field striking the wing of the effects of the hot air coming from the radiators which vent onto the engine hood. Additionally, they create a downwash component in the flow which boosts the wings downforce capacity, resulting in a 10-percent increase over the regular FXX-K.

    The wing also works in conjunction with the active spoiler, which had its control logics and range of movement reviewed and reprogrammed for optimized results. Below the wing, we can see a revised center fascia that include one instead of two vertical slats above the diffuser. In addition to the huge side vents, Ferrari also redesigned the diffuser, adding wings on each side and red accents on the main elements.

    Interior

    • New steering wheel
    • Repositioned KERS Manettino
    • Larger 6.5-inch display

    2015 Ferrari FXX K - image 580997

    Note: Standard Ferrari FXX K pictured here.

    “The new steering wheel has Formula 1 design with integrated gear-shifting paddles and KERS Manettino”

    Ferrari has yet to publish any images of the interior as of this writing, but it’s safe to assume that changes compared to the standard FXX-K are slim. The Italians actually mention a new steering wheel that’s “brilliantly suited to hugely powerful performance levels achievable in the FXX-K Evo.” It has a Formula 1 design with integrated gear-shifting paddles and sports the KERS Manettino for improved ergonomics. The rear camera display to the right of the driver has been replaced with a larger 6.5-inch unit that also displays data from a new telemetry system. The new display includes clearer, more direct performance parameter and car status readouts.

    “The rear camera display to the right of the driver has been replaced with a larger 6.5-inch unit”

    Other than that, look for the usual FXX-K specs, which translates into a rather spartan configuration when compared to the LaFerrari. The Italians ditched all the luxury and convenience features of the road car and replaced them with race-spec, lightweight components. Highlights include a new center console and carbon-fiber inserts instead of soft-touch surfaces on the dashboard. The door panels are also plain carbon-fiber boards, like on any high-performance car.

    The seats feature massive bolstering on the sides, a carbon structure and race-spec harnesses. The instrument cluster is also different than the LaFerrari’s, featuring new graphics and new display options, allowing the driver to monitor vital car data while on the track.

    Drivetrain

    • Same output as FXX-K
    • Same F1 dual-clutch transmission
    • Revised suspension for extra downforce
    • Improved brake cooling
    • Better power-to-weight ratio
    • Likely quicker on the race track

    2018 Ferrari FXX-K Evo - image 741333
    “Total output sits at 1,036 horsepower, while torque is rated at an equally impressive 664 pound-feet”

    The FXX-K Evo uses the same hybrid drivetrain as the regular FXX-K model. The combo brings together a 6.3-liter V-12 gasoline engine rated at 848 horsepower and an electric motor that packs 187 horses. Total output sits at 1,036 horsepower, while torque is rated at an equally impressive 664 pound-feet. For reference, that’s an extra 86 horsepower compared to the LaFerrari. The FXX-K Evo also uses the same seven-speed, F1 dual-clutch transmission.

    But while the engine remained unchanged, Ferrari had to adjust the suspension to the car’s new aerodynamic efficiency figures. It also improved stopping power by redesigning the front brake air intakes for enhanced cooling.


    2018 Ferrari FXX-K Evo - image 741337
    “While the engine remained unchanged, Ferrari had to adjust the suspension to the car's new aerodynamics”

    There’s no word on performance, but the enhanced downforce and lighter curb weight should make it quicker in certain situations. While it likely won’t be quicker than the regular FXX-K from 0 to 60 mph (2.6 seconds), it should lap Ferrari’s Fiorano test track faster. With the FXX-K having completed the course in 1.14 minutes, five seconds than the standard LaFerrari, the FXX-K Evo should need around 1.13 minute to do the same.

    So who light is the new Evo? Again, no information from Ferrari. But we do know that the FXX-K is some 198 pounds lighter than the LaFerrari, tipping the scales at around 2,767 pounds. The Evo should weigh in at a little less than 2,700, which might not sound like much, but it’s a great achievement given that is sports that massive wing and fin at the back.

    Prices


    2018 Ferrari FXX-K Evo - image 741339

    Talking about pricing for limited-edition supercar like these is mostly about speculating as automakers rarely announce an official sticker. Just look at the standard FXX K. It was revealed back in 2015 and there’s no official price tag to talk about, although word has it that each owner paid at least $3 million to get one. Well, not as much as to buy it but borrow, because all 40 units remained with Ferrari for storage and maintenance, and the drivers only got them for specific events.

    This is exactly what will happen with the FXX-K Evo, which will benefit from a very active XX Programme schedule in the 2018/2019 season, with nine track outings between early March and late October. Ferrari didn’t say how many car will be built and how many packages will be offered for upgrades, but I have a hunch that the Evo will be at least as exclusive, if not more, than the first FXX-K. So don’t expect more than 40 cars/upgrade packages.

    Naturally, it will be more expensive than the FXX-K, likely close to $4 million, or even more than that if the limited edition includes significantly less models. Obviously, the cars should cost more than the upgrade, but we won’t get any specific figures any time soon. If there’s one thing I’m sure of, is that the FXX-K Evo is probably already sold out.

    Competition

    McLaren P1 GTR


    2016 McLaren P1 GTR - image 617800

    Also based on a road-legal hybrid supercar, the P1 GTR was designed in a similar way. It has an aerodynamically enhanced body with a host of race-spec add-ons, plus a massive wing at the back. The track-focused interior is loaded with carbon-fiber and features a spartan center console holding buttons and switches, and a steering wheel based on the unit used by the McLaren MP4-23 Formula One car. Sounds familiar? Motivation comes from the same hybrid drivetrain found in the road-legal P1, but the combo now includes a motorsport-optimized, 3.8-liter, twin-turbo V-8 and a lighter electric motor. The drivetrain sends 986 horsepower, 83 horses more than the standard P1, to the rear wheels, which translates into a 0-to-60 mph sprint of only 2.4 seconds, a 0.2-second improvement over the street-legal P1. At launch, pricing was set at around $3 million, a sticker that also included private consultations with the McLaren driver-fitness team and company design director Frank Stephenson, as well as access to one of McLaren’s dedicated racing simulators. Customers also gained access to several drive events held on various Formula One tracks. Production was limited to only 58 units.

    Read our full review of the 2016
    McLaren P1 GTR.

    Aston Martin Vulcan AMR Pro


    2018 Aston Martin Vulcan AMR Pro - image 721702

    The Vulcan arrived in 2016 as Aston Martin’s first full-fledged supercar. Built on a bespoke platform and with unique design and aerodynamics, the Vulcan is also a track-only vehicle and comes with a racing program. Production was limited to only 24 units, each priced from around $2.3 million. But in 2017 the British firm announced an aerodynamically enhanced version. Called the AMR Pro, it’s basically similar to the FXX-K Evo, featuring a more aggressive aero pack. Not only is it menacing on the outside, the Vulcan is radical on th einside too. The bolstered seats, the no-nonsense dashboard, the carbon door panels, and the race-spec cabin remind of Le Mans race cars. But it’s the drivetrain that sets it apart. While the FXX-K Evo is a hybrid, the Vulcan AMR Pro is a naturally aspirated beast. The 7.0-liter V-12 cranks out 820 horsepower, which might not be as exotic as Ferrari’s 1,000+ rating, but it’s enough to push it to 60 mph in less than three seconds and up to a top speed of at least 200 mph. It rides on a pushrod suspension with anti-dive geometry and Multimatic’s Dynamic Suspension Spool Valve dampers, the latter providing high levels of adjustability. There’s also variable traction control and anti-lock braking, as well as Brembo carbon-ceramic disc brakes. Production is capped to 24 units, with prices likely exceeding the $3-million mark.

    Check out the full story on the 2018 Aston Martin Vulcan AMR Pro.

    Conclusion


    2018 Ferrari FXX-K Evo - image 741337

    It’s been four years since Ferrari launched the LaFerrari and it’s pretty obvious that this supercar is from another world. The same goes for the FXX-K, which is not only more exclusive and expensive, but it’s also restricted to the race track and comes with a program that won’t allow its customers to take it home. The Evo takes everything up a notch. It’s more aggressive, likely limited to even less unit, and most certainly significantly more expensive. So why would you pay millions of dollars for a car that you only get to drive a few times a year and you can’t even park it in your garage? Well, I find it ridiculous, but I don’t have millions to spend on cars. So I’m pretty sure I can’t get the full picture here. But I can definitely understand the rush behind owning a very exotic and desirable race car with a Ferrari badge, even if “owning” means getting to see it and drive it a few times a year at the race track. This seemingly awkward ownership process may actually be what makes the FXX-K Evo such an appealing car.

    • Leave it
      • Awfully expensive
      • Very limited production run
      • You can’t actually take it home

    References

    Ferrari FXX K


    2015 Ferrari FXX K - image 632858

    Read our full review on the 2015 Ferrari FXX K.

    Ferrari LaFerrari


    2014 Ferrari LaFerrari - image 495448

    Read our full review on the 2014 Ferrari LaFerrari.

    Ferrari XX History


    2005 Ferrari FXX - image 37826

    The XX program was launched in 2005, when Ferrari launched a higher-performance, race-spec version of the Enzo, the company’s flagship supercar at the time. Called the FXX, it was built in 30 units, one of which was sold to F1-legend Michael Schumacher, between 2005 and 2007. Powered by a 6.3-liter V-12, the first FXX came with 789 horsepower and 506 pound-feet of torque on tap. Hitting 60 mph took around 2.6 seconds, while top speed was rated at 214 mph. Although production ended in 2007, it wasn’t the end of the line of the beefed-up Enzo. The program continued until 2009 and telemetry data gathered from the FXX enabled Ferrari to launched the Evoluzione upgrade. Much like the new FXX-K Evo, the FXX Evoluzione had increased downforce, lowered aerodynamic drag, and updates to the engine, transmission, and chassis. Power was increased to 850 horsepower, while the 0-to-60 mph sprint decreased to 2.5 seconds, while made it the quickest Ferrari ever made.


    2009 Ferrari 599XX - image 296349

    In 2009, the XX program was extended to the Ferrari 599 GTB, giving birth to the 599XX. Using significantly revised body work, a V-12 engine with 720 horsepower, and various chassis upgrades, the 599XX became the quickest production-derived sports car on the Nurburgring track, a title it held for a few months. The 599XX Evoluzione followed in 2011 with more aggressive aerodynamics, including a big rear wing, Pirelli tires, new electronics, 740 horsepower, and a better power-to-weight ratio. The 599XX Evoluzione was the last XX car until the FXX-K arrived in 2015.

    PostHeaderIcon Honda Sports EV Concept

    When Honda debuted the Urban EV Concept at the 2017 Frankfurt Auto Show, I was quick to scrutinize the brand for building something so weird, but as I looked at it more, it began to grow on me. And, it’s a good thing it did because that thing is slated for production for the European market sometime in 2019. And, to really top it off, Honda showed up to the 2017 Tokyo Auto Show with a sports car that looks quite familiar – the Honda Sports EV Concept. Following suit with the previous concept, it carries the same general styling cues in a futuristic but feasible package. Of course, it’s a sports car, so it doesn’t have that love seat up front, but it is quite sporty for what it is, and it could just as easily shift into production thanks to being built upon the same platform used for the last concept.

    Unlike the last concept, however, we have next to no information. And, Honda didn’t even take the time to release interior shots of the concept either. We can tell that it has that massive display screen and that it’s missing the couch, but outside of that, we can’t see much. But, that doesn’t mean that this little battery-powered sports car should be overlooked. Out of all the EV sports car concepts we’ve seen, this is the one we really want to see become a reality, so let’s take a good look and see what’s crackalackin.

    Exterior

    • Smooth body
    • lightweight
    • Compact and nimble

    2017 Honda Sports EV Concept - image 740626
    “The contrast between the white and the black is just what the doctor ordered.”

    If you’re thinking that this thing looks kind of like a funky Hot Wheels car, well, I couldn’t really blame you because it kind of does. But, at the same time, it also has a bit of a sporty nature to it. When I first looked at it, I had the same reaction I did with that funky little Urban EV Concept – “what the hell is Honda thinking” – but the more I looked at it, explored its lines, made love to its curves with my eyes, I realized that I wouldn’t be upset at all if Honda sent this thing rolling into dealers. In fact, I’d be pretty damn happy and would be one of the first in line with a big dumb smile on my face waiting to sign over an arm, a leg, and a testicle to own one. Range-anxiety and ICE sole be damned, this thing is freaking cool. It’s got the modern but circular headlights that point back to the original Civic, and it’s got those muscular front wheel arches that just scream sports car. That big illuminated G in the center of the nose is quite attractive too – kind of like it’s saying “yeah, that’s right; I’m a Honda.” In a world where everyone, including Honda, has gone overboard with the sharp body lines, massive fake vents, and over-styling, the Sports EV (and the Urban EV, for that matter) are a breath of fresh air.


    2017 Honda Sports EV Concept - image 740625

    The side profile is dominated… well, wait. It isn’t dominated by anything, and that’s the beauty of it. Sure, there are big wheels, but they aren’t too big, and they wear thick enough rubber that they don’t look stupid. I doubt those cameras will make into production until regulations change, but some sporty little chrome mirrors would look pretty good hanging on the doors, don’t you think? It’s hard to see, but there are door handles that sit flush with the doors and the way that roof slants down at the B-Pillar, then widens as it hits the rear quarters is something that should rewrite the book of future car design. Honda did tint the windows here to keep folks from getting too good a look inside, but you have to admit, blacking out the windows adds quite the stylish touch too, doesn’t it?


    2017 Honda Sports EV Concept - image 740630
    “That smooth rear bumper is as fresh as it is simple”

    Around back, the bubbly look of the body, and the extent of that all-glass roof is painfully obvious and sexy at the same time. The body wraps around the class like a blanket around a newborn baby, and the contrast between the white and the black is just what the doctor ordered. That smooth rear bumper is as fresh as it is simple and those square taillights that carried over from the original concept really seem to fit in well. Just like its bigger brother, the front and rear displays can be programmed to display messages. All told, it’s sporty and attractive and is certainly what I expect future cars from Honda to actually look like. The question now is whether or not Honda can put something like this into production. I certainly hope so.

    Interior

    • Probably a two-seater
    • Two seats mean decent cargo room

    Does Honda's Urban EV Concept Prove that Honda has no Idea what it is Doing? - image 731196
    Interior from Honda Urban EV Concept shown here
    “there could be a few gauges to measure G-force, acceleration, pitch, and battery life.”

    Honda didn’t take the liberty to release shots of the Sports EV Concept’s interior, but considering the fact that it is based on the Urban EV Concept, we have a pretty good idea. When you look at the outside, you can see that massive screen stretching across the dash. There’s no telling what size it is, but it seems to be at least 30-inches wide and about 10-12 inches tall. Since this is a sports car concept and not an urban lounge-mobile, there’s not going to be a couch behind the wheel, but instead, a pair of supportive racing seats. If Honda doesn’t go aftermarket, it will most definitely tap into Acura for seats similar to those found in the new NSX.

    “I suspect the car would be a two-seater as it’s a rather small sports car”

    Of course, this thing is all-electric, so what you see is really what you get. There isn’t a need for huge gauge clusters or anything of that nature. However, there could be a few gauges to measure G-force, acceleration, pitch, and battery life. These could be positioned in the face of the dash below the screen where there’s simple wood trim in the EV concept. In production form, I would expect to see some carbon fiber here for the sports car because, well, it’s a sports car. Instead of plush carpeting, I would expect to seat carbon floorboards or even Alcantara layered floors. The side view screens on the door trim panels will carry over, but I would expect there to be a better sound system as sports cars gotta have that good sound too.

    I suspect the car would be a two-seater as it’s a rather small sports car and trying to fit someone in the back would certainly be difficult. On the plus side, however, that means there should be plenty of room in the rear hatch. And, to top it off, the car does feature that massive glass roof, just like the Urban EV, so those riding up front get a pretty gnarly view of the sky at night.

    Drivetrain

    • Potential for 300+ horsepower
    • Could get AWD
    • Could see 60mph in three seconds

    2017 Honda Sports EV Concept - image 740628
    “Honda will likely position the battery across the length of the floor between the two axles.”

    What’s “Under the Hood” is actually a complete mystery. Honda didn’t even divulge details about the Urban EV’s drivetrain, and it sure didn’t spill the beans about this concept either. Of course, that wouldn’t matter considering one is meant for lounging and chillin while another is meant to bend corners and tear up those straightaways. So what could be lurking under that sweet, sexy, rounded body that makes this an “according-to-Hoyle” sports car?

    Well, first of all, Honda will likely position the battery across the length of the floor between the two axles. This will be a high-density lightweight battery that also takes advantage of Honda’s new Power Manager Concept to keep things as efficient as possible. As far as motors go, Honda has a couple of options:

    Front Motor Setup


    2017 Honda Sports EV Concept - image 740629
    “The setup could include a single, 300-horsepower motor or dual 170-horsepower motors for a total output around 340 ponies.”

    If Honda wanted this thing to be front-wheel drive only, and that is kind of Honda’s calling card, then Honda could position a rather powerful motor up front while the battery can be positioned just to the rear a bit to provide the perfect offset for as close to a 50:50 weight distribution as possible. Honda could also move the battery further to the rear, and place two motors that are a little less powerful but deliver equal amounts of power. This would allow the onboard computers to adjust torque delivery as needed to combat over-and understeer with ease. Again, the more weight put up front, the further to the rear the battery needs to be. A setup like this could include a single, 300-horsepower motor or dual 170-horsepower motors for a total output around 340 ponies. I would prefer the latter – not only because it’s more powerful but because torque distribution on demand is where it’s at in the sports car world.

    Rear Motor Setup

    Much like the front-motor setup described above. A rear motor setup could work the same way. A single 300-horsepower motor could turn both wheels with the battery positioned just a bit toward the front axle. Or Honda could go the preferred way and use a dual motor setup with more power and torque vectoring. Now, I’m sure I don’t have to tell you that, as a sports car, this thing almost needs to be rear-wheel drive, so we all really hope this thing ends up as rear wheel drive if it ends up in production. But, there’s another approach that could prove fatal to other models in the compact sports car segment.

    All-Wheel Drive

    If Honda really wanted to set the market on fire, it would bring this thing into production with AWD as standard equipment. Not only would that make it one mean little sports car, but it would offer something that cars like the Mazda Miata, Subaru BRZ, Toyota 86, and even the Audi TT can’t – power to all four wheels. Honda could do it with a two motor setup, or it could go with a motor for each wheel. The latter would be preferred as it would offer some serious torque vectoring possibilities and some amazing spirited driving. Both setups would allow the battery to be positioned right in the middle for a near-50:50 weight distribution, but they would have to be powerful enough to handle the extra weight.

    Range Woes

    The biggest problem with an all-electric sports car such as this is its size. Yeah, they are fun to drive, but when you’re relying on battery power alone, your supply of go-juice is limited. I speculated that something like the Urban EV would have around 150 miles of range, which wouldn’t be bad for a vehicle of its caliber. But, a sports car needs a little more. Honda needs to be able to deliver at least 250 miles with this car for it to really pose a threat to anything else on the market – gas or electric. With this thing potentially available by the turn of the decade, Honda could be one of the first to put a true EV sports car this small on the market – one with decent range and power.

    “Hopefully, those lightweight, high-density batteries will be good enough to get the job done.”

    But, and that’s a big but, Honda has to do it right. The biggest limitation here is the car’s size. You can only fit so big of a battery in the floor. Of course, Honda could use the space in the front and rear for auxiliary batteries that would help increase range, but it would have to maintain a pretty even weight distribution and still can’t be too heavy, or this sports car is going to be a slug. When we’re talking about battery power, the heavier it is, the harder it is to go, the more power you need.

    That doesn’t mean it isn’t possible. Hopefully, those lightweight, high-density batteries will be good enough to get the job done. Even at 200 miles, that would be ok, but 250 would be better. For now, we’ll just have to wait and see.

    Conclusion


    2017 Honda Sports EV Concept - image 740631

    In the past, I have voiced very strong opinions against automakers going EV with all of their models. I’ve spoken out against it every way I can, even arguing that the ICE essentially has a soul and the lack of that wonderful combustion would, in turn, leave a hole in our hearts that cannot be replaced. Now, I’m looking at this car, and all I can think of is that this is the electric sports car that we really need. Hell, it’s the electric sports car that we really want. It’s small enough to be very maneuverable and has the opportunity to be potent enough to really pose a real threat to some great names that are already on the market. For now, this car is just a concept, but like the Urban EV, it could become a reality in the next few years. And that, my friends, is a very cool thing.

    • Leave it
      • May not get very good range
      • Could end up being expensive
      • No guarantee of production yet

    PostHeaderIcon Porsche 911 Carrera T

    2018 Porsche Carrera T

    The Porsche 911 has gone through some big changes in the last couple of years, with the most important being Porsche’s decision to replace all naturally aspirated engines with turbocharged counterparts. While this was rather disappointing to some die-hard fans, it brought enhanced performance and fuel economy across the entire lineup. Porsche also revived the GT2 nameplate after a long absence and created the 911 R, essentially a limited-edition, wingless version of the GT3 for purists. Come 2017 and the German firm is offering yet another model aimed at purists and 911 Classic enthusiasts, but this time around is a significantly more affordable package. It’s called the 911 Carrera T and slots between the base Carrera and the GTS.

    Inspired by the 911T, the company’s entry-level 911 between 1967 and 1973, the Carrera T is essentially a base Carrera with features taken off the more performance-oriented GTS. Fitted with a unique design elements inside and out, the Carrera T is also the first Carrera to get full bucket seats and rear-axle steering. The Carrera T is also lighter than the standard model, which makes it the lightest 911 available outside the GT3 and GT2 range. The added features and the lighter curb weight also makes it a tad quicker than the entry-level Carrera, placing it just below the Carrera S model in terms of performance. So while it’s not the least powerful and most affordable 911, as the 911T was back in the late 1960s, it’s a solid proposition for customers who want a no-nonsense Carrera but also desire access to the performance-enhancing features usually offered with the GTS model.

    Continue reading to learn more about the Porsche 911 Carrera T.

    Official video

    Exterior


    - Optimized spoiler lip

    - Agate Gray highlights

    - Lightweight rear windscreen and side windows

    - Lowered suspension

    2018 Porsche 911 Carrera T - image 739972
    “Up front, the 911 T is identical to the entry-level Carrera save for the aerodynamically optimized spoiler lip”

    A 911 Carrera at heart, the T model has a hard time standing out in a pack of base 911 sports cars. Up front, the 911 T is actually identical to the entry-level Carrera save for the aerodynamically optimized spoiler lip. And even though it may sound fancy, this feature is actually not so different design-wise, which makes it difficult to spot. But there is one way to tell that a T isn’t a regular 911 Carrera, even when looking at the front end: the SportDesign mirrors are finished in Agate Grey, whereas the standard Carrera has them painted in the same color as the body.

    More hints that this is a different model can be found on the sides, starting with the 20-inch, Carrera S wheels in Titanium Grey with a stripe bearing the “T” designation. A black stripe just above the side skirt contains “911 Carrera T” lettering. Finally, the coupe sits nearly half an inch closer to the ground thanks to the standard PASM sport suspension, but this isn’t exactly noticeable.


    2018 Porsche 911 Carrera T - image 739958
    “The rear windscreen and rear side windows are made of lightweight glass”

    A few extra features can be spotted around back as well. The louvers of the decklid grille, the badge, and the “911 Carrera T” lettering are all finished in Agate Grey, while the sport exhaust system has black tips. The rear windscreen and rear side windows are made of lightweight glass. Granted, the latter doesn’t change the way this 911 looks, but makes quite a different in the power-to-weight department. But more on that in the “Drivetrain” section below.

    Paint options for the 911 Carrera T are as varied as they get and include Lava Orange, Black, Guards Red, Racing Yellow, White and Miami Blue. Metallic colors like Carrera White, Jet Black, and GT Silver are optional. It’s pretty cool that Porsche is offering Lava Orange, a color first launched with the GT3 RS, for 911 Carrera model.

    left
    right

    Interior

    • Optional bucket seats with rear-seat delete
    • Lightweight door handles and insulation
    • Shorter gear lever
    • GT Sport leather steering wheel

    2018 Porsche 911 Carrera T - image 739964
    “It's the first 911 Carrera available with the Full Bucket Seats package”

    The interior of the 911 Carrera T is actually a bit more exciting than the exterior, combining a range of race-inspired features that you can’t get on the standard Carrera. The coupe comes equipped with Sport Seats Plus as standard. These four-way electrically adjustable seats are finished in black, have “911” logos embossed on the headrests, and center sections made of Sport-Tex. But the big news lies in the fact that you can order the Full Bucket Seats package, a first for the 911 Carrera designation. The option also comes with a rear-seat delete to save even more weight.

    Speaking of weight-saving measures, the standard door handles have been replaced with fabric loops. The cool thing about these is that they also give the door panels a race-inspired look. Further weight is saved by use of thinner sound insulation under the skin. This is Similar to the 911 GTS and yes, it makes the cabin a bit louder. But hey, it’s a sacrifice you have to make if you want a quicker Carrera without the GTS premium.


    2018 Porsche 911 Carrera T - image 739959
    “A shorter gear lever with embossed shift pattern in red is standard”

    Porsche also added a GT Sport steering wheel with leather rim and a switch for driving mode selection, as well as a shorter gear lever with embossed shift pattern in red. The trim on the dashboard and doors is black, which isn’t particularly exciting, but the Carrera T Interior Package adds contrasting colors in Racing Yellow, Guards Red or GT Silver. The latter add colored accents to the seat belts, the “911” logo on the headrests, the door opener loops, and the Sport-Tex seat surfaces.

    Drivetrain

    • Standard rear differential lock
    • 11 pounds lighter than base model
    • A tenth-second quicker to 60 mph
    • Optional rear-axle steering

    2018 Porsche 911 Carrera T - image 739977
    “The Carrera T needs only 4.3 seconds to hit 60 mph a tenth-second quicker than the base Carrera”

    The Carrera T draws its juice from the same 3.0-liter flat-six unit as the base 911 model. The turbocharged engine cranks out 370 and 332 pound-feet of torque, which is again identical to the entry-level model. Well, comparing specs on Porsche’s American website actually revealed there’s an extra pound-foot for the Carrera T, but that’s either a typo or it doesn’t make a difference in terms of performance. However, the standard manual transmission has a shorter constant transaxle ratio, while the mechanical rear differential lock is included at no extra cost.

    What’s more, the Carrera T tips the scales at 3,142 pounds due to the weight-saving measures, which makes it 11 pounds lighter than the base Carrera and the lightest non GT 911 model available. Combined with the revised transmission, the PASM sport suspension, and the slightly lighter curb weight, the Carrera T needs only 4.3 seconds to hit 60 mph from a standing start, a tenth-second quicker than the base Carrera. Top speed is rated at an exciting 182 mph.


    2018 Porsche 911 Carrera T - image 739992
    “Unlike the 911 Carrera, the T model can be equipped with the optional rear-axle steering”

    When equipped with the optional PDK transmission, which also adds a launch control feature, the Carrera T completes the same benchmark in four seconds flat, which is not only quicker than a similarly equipped base Carrera, but also a tenth-second faster than the more powerful Carrera S with a manual transmission. Top speed for this model sits at 180 mph, a tad lower than the manual version.

    Unlike the 911 Carrera, the T model can be equipped with the optional rear-axle steering, which is a cool thing to have on a non Turbo car.

    Drivetrain Specifications

    Engine 3.0-liter flat-six
    Horsepower 370 HP @ 6,500 RPM
    Torque 332 LB-FT
    0 to 60 mph 4.3 seconds
    Top Speed 182 mph
    Weight 3,142 LBS

    Prices


    2018 Porsche 911 Carrera T - image 739994

    Pricing for the 911 Carrera T, which went on sale for the 2018 model year but won’t hit dealers until March, starts from $102,100, excluding the $1,050 delivery, processing and handling fee. That’s a $11,000 premium over the base 911 Carrera, which is reasonable given all the extra features. The T is also only $3,000 less than the Carrera S, which might be a problem if you like all that extra power. But hey, you’re getting a lot of GTS-specific stuff for nearly $19,000 less.

    Porsche 911 Carrera T Manual $102,100
    Porsche 911 Carrera T PDK $105,830

    Competition

    Mercedes-AMG GT


    2018 Mercedes-AMG GT C Coupe - image 700634

    Although it’s an entirely different animal as far as drivetrain layout goes, with the engine being mounted in front of the cabin, the AMG GT was developed as a competitor for the Porsche 911. While modern to look at, the coupe also has a vintage vibe to it reminding of the Mercedes-Benz grand tourers of the 1960s. So it’s actually very similar to the 911 from this standpoint. The interior is of the same variety, blending race-inspired features with luxurious amenities, fine materials, and a wide range of options. Under the hood, the German two-door hides a twin-turbo, 4.0-liter V-8. Upgraded for the 2018 model year, the base AMG GT comes with 469 horsepower and 465 pound-feet of torque, which is significantly more than the 911 Carrera T. With almost 100 extra horses at its disposal, you’d be tempted to think that the AMG GT is significantly quicker, but the difference is far from overwhelming. The sprint to 60 mph takes 3.9 seconds, which is only a tenth-second faster than the Carrera T with the PDK. Of course, we’re talking about four tenths if compared to the manual variant, but you need to consider that the Merc is some $10K more expensive at $112,400.

    Read our full story on the 2018 Mercedes-AMG GT.

    Jaguar F-Type


    2017 Jaguar F-Type - image 655250

    Although not exactly a full-fledged competitor for the 911, the F-Type has what it takes to give Porsche’s finest a run for its money. The exterior design, credited to have helped revive the brand, is aggressive and downright gorgeous, while the interior is packed with premium features and state-of-the-art tech. Sure, it doesn’t have rear seats, but given that the Carrera T can be had with a rear-seat delete, I think it’s a pretty fair comparison. Much like the 911, the F-Type can be had with a wide selection of drivetrains. In the U.S., the range begins with a 2.0-liter four-pot that cranks out 296 horsepower. That’s obviously not enough for the Carrera, especially since this model is significantly slower from 0 to 60 mph at 5.4 seconds. To get something closer, you have to go with the coupe fitted with the 3.0-liter V-6 rated at 400 horses and AWD. This one needs 4.9 seconds. Sure, it’s still slow, but the F-Type that’s next in line uses a massive 5.0-liter V-8. This one cranks out 550 horses and gets to 60 mph in 3.9 seconds. The good news is that this model retails from $99,900, which makes it a bit more affordable than the 911 Carrera T.

    Read our full review of the 2017 Jaguar F-Type.

    Alpine A110


    2017 Renault Alpine A110 - image 708518

    Much like the F-Type, the A110 plays in a different league. Alpine did aim at Porsche with this car, but the smaller 718 Cayman. The reason why I’m including it here it’s because the A110 is a proper, no-nonsense sports car created specifically for the purist in you. Not only does it pay tribute to one of the greatest European sports car ever built, it also combined classic heritage with carbon-fiber, premium features, and a lightweight construction that puts a Porsche to shame. Tipping the scales at an incredible 2,381 pounds, the A110 is some 800 pounds lighter than the 911 Carrera T. Power is provided by a turbocharged, 1.8-liter four-cylinder rated at 252 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of twist. This may not seem like a lot compared to the 911 Carrera, but the solid power-to-weight ratio enables the A110 to hit 60 mph in 4.5 seconds. That’s still slower than the Porsche, but not by much. The good news is that the Alpine is significantly more affordable at under €60,000 (around $70,400 as of October 2017) in Europe, but the bad news is that it’s not available in the United States and there’s no word as to when it will cross the pond.

    Read our full story on the 2017 Alpine A110.

    Conclusion


    2018 Porsche 911 Carrera T - image 739967

    Diversification is key to success nowadays and it’s probably why I’m not surprised that Porsche rolled out yet another version of the 911. However, I’m not really sure that the Carrera T was a necessary addition to the lineup. Sure, having a base Carrera with some GTS features is a cool idea that should appeal many enthusiasts in need of a purist sports car, but I have strong doubts that the Carrera T will be a high seller. Linking this coupe to the 1968 911T is also a nice thing to do, but it’s not exactly very similar to its ancestor. While the 911T was the entry-level 911, the new Carrera T slots between the base model and the GTS and costs almost as much as the Carrera S. But I guess these details don’t make much of a difference since the 911T isn’t among the most iconic versions of the 911.

    • Leave it
      • Almost as expensive as the Carrera S
      • Do we actually need the Carrera T?

    Porsche 911T History


    2018 Porsche 911 Carrera T - image 740173
    “The 911T is known for having helpted Porsche become the first German manufacturer to comply with strict U.S. exhaust and emission control regulations”

    Introduced in 1967, there years after Porsche had launched the iconic nameplate, the 911T was the most affordable version of the 911. The concept wasn’t exactly new. When production of the 356 came to an end in 1965, Porsche noticed that there was still a market for a four-cylinder car, especially in the United States, so the German firm created the 912, a 911 with less equipment and the 356’s 90-horsepower engine. The 912 was kept into production until 1967, when it was replaced by the 911T, which slotted under the 911L and later the 911E.

    Unlike the 912, the 911T used a flat-six engine. The first version was sold with the base 2.0-liter rated at 110 horsepower, but a 1969 upgrade replaced it with a 2.2-liter mill that generated 123 horses, 30 horsepower less than the 911E and 57 less than the 911S. The engine was again upgraded for all models, including the 911T, to a 2.4-liter unit in 1971. But unlike the 911E and 911S, which used mechanical fuel injection, the 911T was carbureted. However, this wasn’t the case in the United States, where regulations forced Porsche to also add fuel injection to the T model. The output was rated 130 horsepower in Europe, while the fuel-injection U.S. model came with 140 horses on tap. In January, 1973, North American 911T engines were switched to Porsche’s then-new K-Jetronic Continuous Fuel Injection system from Bosch. These CIS-powered cars are were among the last 911Ts built and are usually referred to as 1973.5 models by enthusiasts.


    2018 Porsche 911 Carrera T - image 739960

    While not as iconic as other versions of the classic 911, the 911T is known for having helpted Porsche become the first German manufacturer to comply with strict U.S. exhaust and emission control regulations. The 911T is somewhat widely available in the U.S. right and if often considered a great starting point for collectors that want a first-generation Porsche 911. Prices vary depending on mileage and condition from as low as $40,000 to more than $120,000.

    References

    Porsche 911


    2017 Porsche 911 - image 701926

    Read our full review on the 2017 Porsche 911.


    2018 Porsche 718 Cayman GTS - image 739165

    Read more Porsche news.

    PostHeaderIcon Porsche 718 Cayman GTS

    Minor styling changes to the front and rear fascia

    Introduced in 2005 as a hardtop coupe iteration of the ever-popular Porsche Boxster roadster, the Cayman gets all the same good stuff as its topless sibling, plus the added rigidity and aggressive looks of a fixed roof. The latest fourth-generation was introduced in 2016, dubbed the 718 after the racer Porsche built in the late ‘50s. Now, Porsche is adding a new GTS iteration for the 2018 model year, and although we’ve seen a Cayman GTS in the past, this is the first time the formula has been applied to the fourth-gen 718. Per usual, the upgrades include a marginal power increase, more standard equipment, blacked-out trim pieces, and high-end interior materials.

    Continue reading to learn more about the 2018 Porsche 718 Cayman GTS.

    Official video

    Exterior


    2018 Porsche 718 Cayman GTS - image 739173
    “The basics are completely unchanged – you still get a two-door coupe that’s low, wide, and rounded”

    Per Porsche tradition, the 718 Cayman GTS looks only marginally different next to non-GTS iterations. The basics are completely unchanged – you still get a two-door coupe that’s low, wide, and rounded. The 911-inspired front end gets teardrop-shaped headlight housings, each with a set of quad lighting elements. The profile leads the eye rearwards, with a swept-back, streamlined shape, plus a prominent intake added just ahead of the rear wheels. The tail is curvy and short, bulging at the sides with sizable hips that give the whole thing a forward-leaning, raked stance.

    Basically, it’s a two-door coupe version of the two-door Boxster roadster. We think it looks good, albeit a bit predictable.


    2018 Porsche 718 Cayman GTS - image 739167
    “To help the GTS variant stand out, Porsche added a series of subtle, yet effective upgrades, including redesigned fascias and black trim pieces.”

    To help the GTS variant stand out, Porsche added a series of subtle, yet effective upgrades. Kicking it off is a redesigned front fascia, which the Stuttgart automaker has dubbed “Sport Design.” Basically, this encompasses a new lower half for the front bumper, gaining tweaked intakes and additional black components that seem to stretch from fender to fender. The result is a wider look for the GTS.

    left
    right

    The Cayman GTS looks wider than the standard Cayman thanks to a new front fascia.

    The complement the new front fascia, Porsche also added a few updates to the tail, although differences here are a bit more difficult to pick out.

    Finally, a slew of black accents were added front to back, and include black badging and insignia, as well as a tint added to the front turn signals and taillights. Finishing it off are matte-black wheels, sized at 20 inches in diameter at each of the four corners.

    Interior


    2018 Porsche 718 Cayman GTS - image 739169
    “Step into the Cayman GTS’s interior, and you’ll find the traditional two-seat layout, just as you’d expect”

    Step into the Cayman GTS’s interior, and you’ll find the traditional two-seat layout, just as you’d expect. The space is tight, hugging the passengers in the typical sports car fashion, while drivers grip a three-spoke multifunction steering wheel. Prominent handles can be found on the doors, while rounded air vents are on the dash. Adorning the center console is a digital infotainment screen, plus a plethora of buttons and switches to adjust the various onboard systems.

    All pretty standard stuff, if we’re honest. However, much like the exterior, the GTS stands out thanks to a few choice upgrades. For starters, you’ll notice the Porsche chronometer placed high on the dash, a feature you’ll find on every Cayman GTS thanks to the standard Sport Chrono Package (more on that in the next section).


    2018 Porsche 718 Cayman GTS - image 739186
    “Much like the exterior, the GTS stands out thanks to a few choice upgrades, including a standard chronometer, sport seating, and further black accents.”

    Further upgrades include a variety of black accents, plus standard Sport Seats Plus

    sitters specifically engineered to provide ample lateral support while exploring the Cayman’s lofty cornering abilities. High on the seats, you’ll find the GTS logo embroidered into the seat headrest, while Alcantara adorns the seats’ center sections. Further Alcantara was added to the steering wheel, center console, and door armrest.

    Options include the Navigation Module Package and Connect Plus Package, as well as the Porsche Track Precision App, which basically relays pertinent track data to your smartphone as part of the Sport Chrono Package.

    Drivetrain


    2018 Porsche 718 Cayman GTS - image 739165
    “Displacement still comes in at 2.5 liters, but peak power is rated at 365 horses, 15 more than the S.”

    Mounted behind the cabin, the Cayman GTS comes equipped with a turbocharged 2.5-liter boxer flat-four engine, the same lump you get with the Cayman S. As an upgrade over the standard 2.0-liter flat-four in the base model Cayman, the S produces as much as 350 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque, a sizeable increase over the base model’s 296 horsepower and 280 pound-feet. Properly motivated, the Cayman S can manage a run to 60 mph in 4.0 seconds and a top speed of 177 mph.

    The GTS sees a little more added on top thanks to a new intake plenum and update to the turbocharger. Displacement still comes in at 2.5 liters, but peak power is rated at 365 horses, 15 more than the S. Sending the power to the rear axle is a standard six-speed manual gearbox, although a seven-speed double-clutch automatic (popularly known as the “Porsche Doppelkupplung,” or PDK), is also offered as an available option.


    2018 Porsche 718 Cayman GTS - image 739185
    “The GTS sees a little more added on top thanks to a new intake plenum and update to the turbocharger”

    Torque in the 718 Cayman GTS is rated at 317 pound-feet when equipped with a PDK, or 309 pound-feet with the manual transmission. Max torque hits at 1,900 rpm, lasting until 5,000 rpm with the PDK and 5,500 with the manual.

    Clearly, the PDK is the faster option, and as such, acceleration with the seven-speed looks like 3.9 seconds to 60 mph – about a tenth of a second quicker than the S. Top speed is rated at 180 mph, 3 mph faster than the S.

    Finally, the GTS comes standard with a sport exhaust, finished with black pipe tips to complement the rest of the black trim.

    2015 Porsche Cayman GTS Porsche 718 Cayman S 2018 Porsche Cayman GTS
    Cylinder layout / number of cylinders Boxer engine / 6 Boxer engine / 4 turbocharged flat-four
    Displacement 3.4-liter 2.5 liter 2.5-liter
    Engine layout Mid-engine Mid-engine Mid-engine
    Horsepower 340 HP @ 6,700 RPM 350 HP @ 6,500 RPM 365 HP @ 6,500 RPM
    Torque 280 LB-FT 309 LB-FT 317 LB-FT
    Top Track Speed 177 mph 177 MPH 180 MPH
    0 – 60 mph 4.7 seconds 4.4 sec/4.2 sec (4.0 sec w/ Sport Chrono) 3.9 seconds

    Chassis And Handling


    2018 Porsche 718 Cayman GTS - image 739179
    “The Cayman GTS has the right stuff to be an absolute delight in the corners.”

    While certainly quick, one of the Cayman’s biggest selling points is the way it handles. Indeed, with a mid-/rear-mounted engine and relatively low curb weight (roughly 3,000 pounds), not to mention Porsche’s reputation for building razor-sharp track toys, the Cayman GTS has the right stuff to be an absolute delight in the corners.

    Making the most of it is the standard Porsche Torque Vectoring system, which throws in a mechanical rear-differential lock to keep the traction flowing. Buyers also get standard Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM). Also note, the PASM lowers the car by 0.39 inches compared to the standard Cayman suspension set-up.

    Finally, the Cayman GTS comes standard with the popular Sport Chrono Package, which enables a sportier drive mode perfectly suited for track driving. Features like Launch Control, faster gear changes, a sharper throttle response, and dynamic transmission mounts are all included.

    Prices


    2018 Porsche 718 Cayman GTS - image 739174

    Order books are open now for the 2018 Porsche 718 Cayman GTS, with first deliveries expected to arrive by March of 2018.

    Pricing for the Cayman GTS is set $79,800, which is a little over $27,000 more than the standard model Cayman.

    Competition

    Jaguar F-Type


    2017 Jaguar F-Type - image 655250

    If you prefer a sports car with an extra dose of grand touring style, then Jag has what you need with the F-Type. Offering a variety of trim levels and price points, Jag’s best fit for the 718 Cayman would be the $80,000 R-Dynamic Coupe, which equips a front-mounted 3.0-liter V-6 that’s supercharged to produce 380 horsepower at the rear wheels. Not only does it look incredible, but it’s also got enough muscle to hit 60 mph in 4.8 seconds and reach a top speed of 161 mph.

    Read our full review on the Jaguar F-Type.

    BMW M4 Coupe


    2018 BMW M4 - image 702089

    Slotting in as the Bavarian’s compact two-door performance machine, the M4 Coupe is a muscle-bound luxury sports car dripping in track-inspired styling cues. Even better, it’s got the goods under the hood to back the aesthetic, rocking 425 horsepower and 406 pound-feet of torque thanks to a turbocharged inline six-cylinder. And although pricing starts at $64,200, well below the sticker for the Cayman GTS, the M4’s long list of options is sure to pad the bottom line significantly.

    Read our full review on the BMW M4 Coupe.

    Chevrolet Corvette Z06


    2015 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 - image 538131

    Sometimes, subtlety needs to take a back seat to raw, unbridled performance, and in circumstances such as those, the Bow Tie offers the Corvette Z06. Producing a whopping 650 horsepower and 650 pound-feet of torque from a supercharged 6.2-liter V-8, this all-American bruiser trounces the competition in terms of acceleration, hitting the 60-mph mark in just 3 seconds flat. Either a seven-speed manual or an eight-speed automatic routes the muscle rearwards, while mammoth grip comes courtesy of real working aero and wide Michelin tires. It’s even got carbon brakes to slow it down. And starting at just over $80,000, the Z06 won’t break the bank either.

    Read our full review on the Chevrolet Corvette Z06.

    Conclusion


    2018 Porsche 718 Cayman GTS - image 739166
    “The GTS thing is nearly thirty grand more than standard model, which begs the question – is it really worth it to pay the equivalent of a brand new Dodge Challenger or Toyota 86 to get the GTS?”

    At first glance, the Porsche 718 Cayman GTS might seem a bit too pricey for its own good. After all, this thing is nearly thirty grand more than standard model, which begs the question – is it really worth it to pay the equivalent of a brand new Dodge Challenger or Toyota 86 to get the GTS?

    For many folks, the answer is an unequivocal yes. Sure, in terms of power, the GTS isn’t setting any sort of new benchmarks, and although an extra 15 horses over the S isn’t a lot, it’s good enough to optimize the rest of the equipment you get with the model. The active suspension, Sport Chrono Package, and torque vectoring system are all included with the GTS badges, which should go a long way in making this Cayman even more impressive in the corners.

    And at the end of the day, that’s what Porsche’s customers really want. If a blistering 0-to-60 mph is more your speed, then the ‘Vette is where you should look.

    Long story short, the Cayman GTS is worth it – just so long as you were originally planning on getting a little heavy-handed with that options list anyway.

    • Leave it
      • Seriously expensive
      • Much faster options already on the market
      • Standard Cayman might be the smarter buy for some

    References

    Porsche 718


    2017 Porsche 718 Cayman - image 697886

    Read our full review on the new 2017 Porsche 718 Cayman.

    Porsche Cayman


    2015 Porsche Cayman GTS - image 546440

    Read our full review on the previous 2015 Porsche Cayman GTS.

    Porsche Boxster


    2015 Porsche Boxster GTS - image 723936

    Read our full review on the 2018 Porsche Boxster GTS.

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