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Archive for the ‘special editions’ Category

PostHeaderIcon Chevrolet COPO Camaro

Chevrolet COPO Camaro

Chevrolet has launched its 2018 COPO Camaro with an all-new, 302 cubic-inch V-8 and “Supercrush” orange paint with black racing stripes just like the 2018 Chevy Camaro Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Edition, which debuted alongside it. Both cars will make their first public appearance next week at the 2017 SEMA Show in Las Vegas. And, while anyone can order the Camaro Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Edition, the COPO Camaro is a race-bred monster built exclusively for the dragstrip and limited to 69 examples per year. Hopeful buyers have to win Chevy’s lottery for the chance at COPO keys.

The COPO Camaro has a rich history that dates back to 1969 when Illinois Chevy dealer Fred Gibb ordered 50 Camaros with the all-aluminum ZL-1 V-8 from Chevy’s central office production order system, hints the COPO name. Basically, these were special-order cars that proved insanely quick. Soon, 19 other COPO Camaros in similar configurations were ordered by other eagle-eyed dealerships. Yenko Chevrolet also got in on the action, ordering 201 COPO Camaros with a 427 cubic-inch iron-block V-8 in 1969. Sadly, the original COPO Camaros were a one-year-only phenomenon – that is, until Chevy decided to build its own COPO Camaro with its all-new, fifth-generation Camaro for 2012. Since then, the COPO tradition has lived on into the Camaro’s sixth generation and into 2018. To see what changes Chevy has made for this year, keep reading.

Continue for more information on the 2018 COPO Camaro.

Exterior

  • Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Package
  • Supercrush orange paint & black stripes
  • Purely for drag racing
  • Limited to 69 examples

2018 Chevrolet COPO Camaro - image 740876
“The 2018 COPO Camaro can be ordered with a bright Supercrush orange paint with the black racing stripes and Hot Wheels fender badges”

To understand why the 2018 COPO Camaro looks the way it does, we’ve got to check out the 2018 Camaro Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Edition. This car honors the long history between the Camaro and the famed toy car builder, Hot Wheels, by throwing on a highly visible paint color, racing stripes, unique 20-inch Satin Graphite wheels, Hot Wheels badges on the front fenders, and a slew of added Hot Wheels details on the inside. It can be had in both coupe and convertible form and with either the 2LT or 2SS trim packages. That means it’s available in only the highest trim, but with the 2.0-liter turbo-four, the 3.6-liter V-6, or the 6.2-liter V-8.

The 2018 COPO Camaro can be ordered with a similar exterior treatment that includes the bright Supercrush orange paint with the black racing stripes and Hot Wheels fender badges. But that’s where the similarities end between it and the road-going Camaro. The COPO wears an airbrushed-style copy of the “Hot Wheels 50” logo on its rear haunches, has a tall ram-air hood, and drag racing equipment that includes skinny front tires massive rear slicks, wheelie bars, and a parachute. You’ll also notice the missing side mirrors and low-buck headlights. Those changes are meant to save weight. There’s no denying the COPO is meant to live on the drag strip.

Interior

  • NHRA-certified to race
  • Gutted cabin for reduced mass
  • Pro-level gauges and controls

2018 Chevrolet Camaro Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Edition - image 740872

Note: Chevrolet Camaro Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Edition pictured here.

Speaking of saving weight, the COPO Camaro’s cockpit barely resembles the production car. The dashboard, steering wheel, and door panels are about the only stock pieces still in place. NHRA-rated racing seats and five-point harness replace the standard seats. A full roll cage keeps the driver and front passenger protected. Controls include a set of aftermarket analog gauges, an A-pillar-mounted tachometer, a shift light, and a rocker switches in place of the infotainment screen that controls the ignition, fuel pump, radiator fans, and the starter motor. A ratchet shifter controls the TH400 three-speed automatic transmission and beside that is a lever to release the parachute. It’s all business inside the COPO.

Drivetrain

  • New 302 cubic-inch V-8 built for high revs
  • 427 cubic-inch V-8 with 470 horsepower
  • Supercharged 350 cubic-inch V-8 with 580
  • Quarter-mile times in mid-8s at 160 mph
  • TH400 three-speed automatic
  • Solid rear axle

2018 Chevrolet COPO Camaro - image 740877
“The 2018 COPO Camaro has three engine options”

The 2018 COPO Camaro has three engine options. There’s the 427 cubic-inch, 7.0-liter V-8, the supercharged 350 cubic-inch V-8 (5.7 liters), and the new 302 cubic-inch V-8. The new 4.9-liter replaces the 410-horsepower, LT1-based 6.2-liter found in the 2016 and 2017 COPOs. Technically, the 4.9-liter is a de-stroked 6.2-liter LT1 that’s build to hit higher revs. Chevy didn’t get into the exact details, but expect to see the 302’s redline well past 7,000 rpm. Likewise, horsepower and torque figures haven’t been published, but expect it to be competitive with the outgoing 6.2-liter.

The returning 427 is also naturally aspirated and is based on the LS7 V-8 found in the fifth-generation Camaro Z/28. In this application, it should make 470 horsepower. The supercharged 5.7-liter is an LSX small block race mill with a 2.9-liter roots-type blower force-feeding it cool air. Last year, the engine made an NHRA-certified 580 horsepower and boasted a redline of 8,000 rpm. That’s no joke.
In fact, the 350-powered COPO will do the quarter-mile in the mid-eights at a blistering 160 mph.

“Regardless of engine choice, the transmission is an ATI TH400 three-speed automatic with a ratchet shifter”

Regardless of engine choice, the transmission is an ATI TH400 three-speed automatic with a ratchet shifter. Super strong with crazy fasts shifts, the turbo-hydramatic 400 is a legendary transmission that’s been used for decades.

And unlike the standard sixth-generation Camaro with its independent rear end, the COPO uses a solid rear axle with a multi-link suspension system. The front suspension is also adjustable to suit track conditions. That just goes to show, sometimes old technology works just fine.

The COPO is designed to compete in the NHRA’s Stock Eliminator Class.

Pricing


2018 Chevrolet COPO Camaro - image 741105

The exact pricing for the 2018 COPO Camaro has not been announced, but 2016 and 2017 COPOs sold for between $90,000 and $110,000, depending on what options were ordered. Expect those prices to continue, though Chevy is likely to charge more for the Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary paint job.

On the road-legal 2018 Camaro Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Edition, the package adds $4,995 to the MSRP and is limited to 2,500 cars.

Competition

2016 Ford Mustang Cobra Jet


2016 Ford Mustang Cobra Jet - image 653934

Ford is in on the NHRA Stock Eliminator and Super Stock class action, too. The 2016 Cobra Jet is a special-built drag car with 1,000 horsepower from a supercharged 5.0-liter V-8 that shares nearly 75 percent of its internal parts with the stock Mustang GT. It has a solid rear axle, massive drag slicks, and the all-important parachute. Inside, the cabin is stripped of all unnecessary parts and fitted with a roll cage and race seats. Basically, it’s Ford’s direct answer to the COPO Camaro. Ford even limited the Cobra Jet to 50 examples. Sadly, 2016 is the most recent example Ford has produced.

Read our full review on the 2016 Ford Mustang Cobra Jet.

2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon


2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon - image 729184

The Demon has gotten plenty of press over the last year thanks to Dodge’s incredibly slow yet methodically planned rollout. The car was well worth the wait, though, thanks to its insane level of go-fast drag strip technology. Its powered by a modified Hellcat engine that displaces the same 6.2 liters of Hemi goodness, but with 840 horsepower and 770 pound-feet of torque when ran on race fuel. An eight-speed automatic transmission is the same ZF gearbox found in the standard Challenger Hellcat. Dodge somehow makes this four-seater hit 60 mph in 2.3 seconds and through the quarter-mile in 9.65 seconds at 140 mph.

The best part, of course, is the Demon is completely street legal and comes with a VIN – something no COPO or Cobra Jet can boast. Better yet, Dodge is building 3,000 of them for 2017. The price is even comparatively reasonable at $86,090.

Read our full review on the 2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon.

Conclusion


2018 Chevrolet COPO Camaro - image 740876

The 2018 Chevrolet COPO Camaro is a helluva car, though only if you’re planning on living life a quarter-mile at a time. Vin Diesel has met his match. The COPO offers a factory-built dragster to anybody with six figures in their bank account and enough luck to win the independently moderated and randomly drawn lottery. Remember, only 69 COPOs are built each year.

And should you want your Camaro to do more than drive straight, Chevrolet also has you covered with the Camaro GT4.R track car. This ZL1 1LE-based GT4 car is designed to out-turn, out-stop, and out-accelerate the best from Germany, all for $259,000.

  • Leave it
    • Not street legal
    • Verly limited production

References

Chevrolet Camaro


2016 - 2017 Chevrolet Camaro - image 630471

Read our full review on the 2017 Chevrolet Camaro.


2018 Chevrolet Camaro Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Edition - image 740868

Read our full review on the 2018 Chevy Camaro Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Edition.


2016 Chevrolet COPO Camaro - image 653876

Read our full review on the 2016 Chevrolet COPO Camaro.

PostHeaderIcon Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake

2018 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake

Redesigned in 2012, the current Aston Martin Vanquish is set to retire in less than a couple of years in order to make way for a brand-new model, and the British firm is doing whatever it takes to spice things up before pulling the plug. In 2016, it unveiled a re-bodied version of the grand tourer made by Zagato, but the coupe was soon followed by a Volante version. 2017 brought a Speedster model as well, and with 2018 just around the corner Aston Martin and Zagato launched a new body style, the Shooting Brake. The wagon model will be as exclusive as its sibling and likely extremely expensive, but it’s an important milestone in a market where shooting brakes have almost gone the way of the dodo bird.

While the Vantage Zagato wagon arrived unexpectedly, it’s not exactly surprising that Aston Martin created a shooting brake. The British firm is no stranger to this body style, and it has released quite a few wagons in the past. Harold Radford built such versions of DB5, DB6, and DBS back in the 1960s, but Aston Martin made its very own production run of the Virage in the early 1990s. More recently, Bertone transformed the Rapide in a shooting brake, but these are just a few examples. We definitely need more shooting brakes on the market today, and even though the Vanquish Zagato is limited to very few examples, it will be great to see one more sports wagon hit public roads.

Continue reading to learn more about the Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake.

Exterior

  • Muscular, Zagato-design body
  • Unique roof and rear end
  • DB11-inspired features
  • Carbon-fiber body elements
  • Glass and carbon roof
  • Exclusive wheels

2018 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake - image 740278
“Arguably the biggest change to the car's profile is the longer, wagon-style roof”

Much like the Speedster and the Volante, the Shooting Brake model is identical to the Zagato coupe below the waist. So you’re basically getting an already good-looking grand tourer with more muscular cues and a unique twist thanks to the revised roof.

Up front, the new Zagato model sports the same massive grille with LED daytime running lights at each corner, a big splitter at the bottom, and a sculpted engine hood with big vents on each side of the center section. It also has the same deeply sculpted side skirts and DB11-inspired fender strake, but the latter was mounted on a black background. With all the other Zagato models having their front fenders finished in one color, this is yet another element that makes the Shooting Brake unique.

The side mirrors carry over unchanged, but this is cool since they’re inspired from those seen on the One-77 limited-edition supercar. But, arguably, the biggest change to the profile is the longer, wagon-style roof. The upper section is actually identical to the coupe from the A- to the B-pillars, but from there on, Aston Martin designed significantly longer quarter windows and C-pillars. The latter are flatter and continue the arch of the roof toward the front fascia. It forms a wagon-like tailgate, but with a narrower design that allows the Vanquish Zagato to keep it muscular haunches.


2018 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake - image 740277
“This Zagato is a mighty fine example of how a modern shooting brake should be designed and engineered”

The rear fascia remains the same as far as the round taillights, the pointy decklid, and the carbon-fiber diffuser go. However, the rear glass is obviously smaller, while the heavily raked angle of the coupe is now gone. But the sloping roofline and the aggressive spoiler make the shooting brake just as aggressive as the coupe. The roof itself is also an interesting piece of engineering, with the fully transparent area being shaped like a V, with the narrower end oriented toward the rear. The remaining surface and the spoiler seem to be made of carbon-fiber, so Aston Martin took some precaution to keep the roof as light as possible.

All told, this Zagato is a mighty fine example of how a modern shooting brake should be designed and engineered and it’s by far the most appealing of the Vanquish Zagato lineup. Of course, this has to do with the fact that shooting brakes aren’t very common nowadays and the fact that I’m a big fan of sporty wagons.

Interior

  • “Herringbone” carbon-fiber paint
  • Anodized bronze detailing
  • “Z” quilt pattern on seats
  • Rear-seat delete
  • Enhance luggage room

2017 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato - image 680400

Note: 2017 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato pictured here.

“The rear-seat delete provides more luggage room than the standard Vanquish”

There aren’t any photos of the interior, but it’s safe to assume that the Shooting Brake is like any other Vanquish Zagato out there. This also means that it’s almost identical to the standard Vanquish, being set apart by new luxury features. The main highlight here is the “Herringbone” carbon-fiber paint with anodized bronze detailing on the center stack. There’s also the aniline leather and a unique “Z” quilt pattern stitch on the seats and door panels. The headrests have the letter “Z” embossed, while the upper door panels received double contrast stitching.

The coupe also has “Z” headliner stitching, but this feature is obviously missing here since the most of the roof is transparent. What remains unknown is whether the Shooting Brake is a two or a four seater. A picture showing the car from above suggests that Aston Martin may have removed the rear seats. This makes it somewhat less practical than a standard Vanquish in terms of how many passengers it can carry, but it provides additional luggage room. Not that customers will actually use it as a vacation car, but it remains somewhat true to the original shooting brake concept, which was as utilitarian as a full-fledged wagon.

Drivetrain

  • 5.9-liter V-12 engine
  • 592 horsepower
  • 465 pound-feet of torque
  • 0 to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds
  • Eight-speed automatic transmission

2014 - 2015 Aston Martin Vanquish - image 461514

Note: Standard Aston Martin Vanquish engine pictured here.

“Just like the rest of Vanquish Zagato family, the shooting brake gets its juice from the familiar 5.9-liter V-12”

Just like the rest of Vanquish Zagato family, the shooting brake gets its juice from the familiar 5.9-liter V-12 that powers the standard Vanquish. Output is rated at 592 horsepower and 465 pound-feet of torque in Europe, while the U.S.-spec version comes with 580 horsepower. The 12-horsepower deficit most likely has something to do with emission regulations on this side of the pond.

There’s no info on performance as of this writing, but we do know the coupe model hits 60 mph in 3.5 seconds. The shooting brake could be just as quick, as it shouldn’t be significantly heavier. The V-12 mates to the same ZF-developed, eight-speed automatic transmission from the regular Aston Martin Vanquish.

Prices


2018 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake - image 740276

Aston Martin hasn’t revealed pricing for any of its Vanquish Zagato models, and the Shooting Brake is no exception from this rule. The only hint we have about this series is that the Zagato Speedster could cost a whopping £1.3 million, which converts to around $1.7 million as of October 2017. But, unlike the Speedster, which is limited to only 28 units, all the other Zagato models, the Shooting Brake included, are built in 99 examples. So it’s safe to assume that the Shooting Brake will cost less. than that. It won’t be as “affordable” as the regular Vanquish, priced from around $300,000 either, but it could cost around $1 million. Granted, it’s a lot of money even for a beefed-up Vanquish, but much like any other boutique shooting brake out there, this Zagato-design wagon will sell out in no time.

Competition

In the current market, there are only four regular production shooting brakes you can buy: the Mercedes-Benz CLS and CLA, the Porsche Panamera Sport Turismo, and the Ferrari GTC4Lusso. Of the four, only the Ferrari is a worthy competitor to the Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake.

Ferrari GTC4Lusso


2017 Ferrari GTC4Lusso T - image 689068

Essentially an upgrade to the Ferrari FF, the GTC4Lusso is actually very similar to the Vanquish Zagato. It has a long nose, a sporty roof, and virtually no decklid to the rear. Sure, it’s roofline and tailgate aren’t as sleek as the Zagato’s, but it’s a proper shooting brake model. And, the new features it received in 2016 make it more appealing than the FF. Luxury is a given inside the cabin, with nearly every surfaced draped in leather, Alcantara, aluminum, and carbon-fiber. Unlike the Vanquish, it also has a number of race-inspired features, like instrument cluster with the white clock in the middle and the flat-bottom, multi-control steering wheel. Output-wise, it’s the more potent option, with its 6.3-liter V-12 engine generating a whopping 680 horsepower and 514 pound-feet of torque. This translates into a 0 to 60 mph sprint of 3.3 seconds, which should be at least two tenths quicker than the Aston Martin. Top speed is also far superior at 209 mph. Pricing starts at a little over $300,000, so it’s more affordable too.

Read our full review of the 2017 Ferrari GTC4Lusso.

Conclusion


2018 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake - image 740277

When Aston Martin unveiled the Vanquish Zagato Concept as I said to myself “that’s one hell of a sexy coupe” and I just knew that we will eventually see a production model. And, Aston Martin delivered shortly after. But I honestly didn’t expect the British brand to expand the Vanquish Zagato nameplate to include four different models. Aston Martin has rolled out quite a few Zagato models in the past, but no project was a complex as this one. And on top of the usual coupe and convertible, we also got a speedster and a shooting brake. Needless to say, all of them are spectacular in their own right, but the Speedster and the Shooting Brake are by far the more exotic versions, especially since you don’t see these body styles on the road quite often.

Up until now, the Speedster was my favorite variant of the Vanquish Zagato, but I just fell in love with the new Shooting Brake model. I must admit that I am a fan of vintage shooting brakes, but I’d take the Vanquish Zagato in a heartbeat. Assuming it wouldn’t be this exclusive and expensive. But hey, these attributes are part of what makes a car stand out from the pack.

  • Leave it
    • Exclusive and expensive
    • Not so much official info

References

Aston Martin Vanquish


2017 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato - image 727558

Read our full review on the 2017 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato.


2017 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Volante - image 685633

Read our full review on the 2017 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Volante.


2018 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Speedster - image 726604

Read our full review on the 2018 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Speedster.


2018 Aston Martin Vanquish S - image 695571

Read our full review on the 2018 Aston Martin Vanquish S.

PostHeaderIcon Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake

2018 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake

Redesigned in 2012, the current Aston Martin Vanquish is set to retire in less than a couple of years in order to make way for a brand-new model, and the British firm is doing whatever it takes to spice things up before pulling the plug. In 2016, it unveiled a re-bodied version of the grand tourer made by Zagato, but the coupe was soon followed by a Volante version. 2017 brought a Speedster model as well, and with 2018 just around the corner Aston Martin and Zagato launched a new body style, the Shooting Brake. The wagon model will be as exclusive as its sibling and likely extremely expensive, but it’s an important milestone in a market where shooting brakes have almost gone the way of the dodo bird.

While the Vantage Zagato wagon arrived unexpectedly, it’s not exactly surprising that Aston Martin created a shooting brake. The British firm is no stranger to this body style, and it has released quite a few wagons in the past. Harold Radford built such versions of DB5, DB6, and DBS back in the 1960s, but Aston Martin made its very own production run of the Virage in the early 1990s. More recently, Bertone transformed the Rapide in a shooting brake, but these are just a few examples. We definitely need more shooting brakes on the market today, and even though the Vanquish Zagato is limited to very few examples, it will be great to see one more sports wagon hit public roads.

Continue reading to learn more about the Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake.

Exterior

  • Muscular, Zagato-design body
  • Unique roof and rear end
  • DB11-inspired features
  • Carbon-fiber body elements
  • Glass and carbon roof
  • Exclusive wheels

2018 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake - image 740278
“Arguably the biggest change to the car's profile is the longer, wagon-style roof”

Much like the Speedster and the Volante, the Shooting Brake model is identical to the Zagato coupe below the waist. So you’re basically getting an already good-looking grand tourer with more muscular cues and a unique twist thanks to the revised roof.

Up front, the new Zagato model sports the same massive grille with LED daytime running lights at each corner, a big splitter at the bottom, and a sculpted engine hood with big vents on each side of the center section. It also has the same deeply sculpted side skirts and DB11-inspired fender strake, but the latter was mounted on a black background. With all the other Zagato models having their front fenders finished in one color, this is yet another element that makes the Shooting Brake unique.

The side mirrors carry over unchanged, but this is cool since they’re inspired from those seen on the One-77 limited-edition supercar. But, arguably, the biggest change to the profile is the longer, wagon-style roof. The upper section is actually identical to the coupe from the A- to the B-pillars, but from there on, Aston Martin designed significantly longer quarter windows and C-pillars. The latter are flatter and continue the arch of the roof toward the front fascia. It forms a wagon-like tailgate, but with a narrower design that allows the Vanquish Zagato to keep it muscular haunches.


2018 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake - image 740277
“This Zagato is a mighty fine example of how a modern shooting brake should be designed and engineered”

The rear fascia remains the same as far as the round taillights, the pointy decklid, and the carbon-fiber diffuser go. However, the rear glass is obviously smaller, while the heavily raked angle of the coupe is now gone. But the sloping roofline and the aggressive spoiler make the shooting brake just as aggressive as the coupe. The roof itself is also an interesting piece of engineering, with the fully transparent area being shaped like a V, with the narrower end oriented toward the rear. The remaining surface and the spoiler seem to be made of carbon-fiber, so Aston Martin took some precaution to keep the roof as light as possible.

All told, this Zagato is a mighty fine example of how a modern shooting brake should be designed and engineered and it’s by far the most appealing of the Vanquish Zagato lineup. Of course, this has to do with the fact that shooting brakes aren’t very common nowadays and the fact that I’m a big fan of sporty wagons.

Interior

  • “Herringbone” carbon-fiber paint
  • Anodized bronze detailing
  • “Z” quilt pattern on seats
  • Rear-seat delete
  • Enhance luggage room

2017 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato - image 680400

Note: 2017 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato pictured here.

“The rear-seat delete provides more luggage room than the standard Vanquish”

There aren’t any photos of the interior, but it’s safe to assume that the Shooting Brake is like any other Vanquish Zagato out there. This also means that it’s almost identical to the standard Vanquish, being set apart by new luxury features. The main highlight here is the “Herringbone” carbon-fiber paint with anodized bronze detailing on the center stack. There’s also the aniline leather and a unique “Z” quilt pattern stitch on the seats and door panels. The headrests have the letter “Z” embossed, while the upper door panels received double contrast stitching.

The coupe also has “Z” headliner stitching, but this feature is obviously missing here since the most of the roof is transparent. What remains unknown is whether the Shooting Brake is a two or a four seater. A picture showing the car from above suggests that Aston Martin may have removed the rear seats. This makes it somewhat less practical than a standard Vanquish in terms of how many passengers it can carry, but it provides additional luggage room. Not that customers will actually use it as a vacation car, but it remains somewhat true to the original shooting brake concept, which was as utilitarian as a full-fledged wagon.

Drivetrain

  • 5.9-liter V-12 engine
  • 592 horsepower
  • 465 pound-feet of torque
  • 0 to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds
  • Eight-speed automatic transmission

2014 - 2015 Aston Martin Vanquish - image 461514

Note: Standard Aston Martin Vanquish engine pictured here.

“Just like the rest of Vanquish Zagato family, the shooting brake gets its juice from the familiar 5.9-liter V-12”

Just like the rest of Vanquish Zagato family, the shooting brake gets its juice from the familiar 5.9-liter V-12 that powers the standard Vanquish. Output is rated at 592 horsepower and 465 pound-feet of torque in Europe, while the U.S.-spec version comes with 580 horsepower. The 12-horsepower deficit most likely has something to do with emission regulations on this side of the pond.

There’s no info on performance as of this writing, but we do know the coupe model hits 60 mph in 3.5 seconds. The shooting brake could be just as quick, as it shouldn’t be significantly heavier. The V-12 mates to the same ZF-developed, eight-speed automatic transmission from the regular Aston Martin Vanquish.

Prices


2018 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake - image 740276

Aston Martin hasn’t revealed pricing for any of its Vanquish Zagato models, and the Shooting Brake is no exception from this rule. The only hint we have about this series is that the Zagato Speedster could cost a whopping £1.3 million, which converts to around $1.7 million as of October 2017. But, unlike the Speedster, which is limited to only 28 units, all the other Zagato models, the Shooting Brake included, are built in 99 examples. So it’s safe to assume that the Shooting Brake will cost less. than that. It won’t be as “affordable” as the regular Vanquish, priced from around $300,000 either, but it could cost around $1 million. Granted, it’s a lot of money even for a beefed-up Vanquish, but much like any other boutique shooting brake out there, this Zagato-design wagon will sell out in no time.

Competition

In the current market, there are only four regular production shooting brakes you can buy: the Mercedes-Benz CLS and CLA, the Porsche Panamera Sport Turismo, and the Ferrari GTC4Lusso. Of the four, only the Ferrari is a worthy competitor to the Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake.

Ferrari GTC4Lusso


2017 Ferrari GTC4Lusso T - image 689068

Essentially an upgrade to the Ferrari FF, the GTC4Lusso is actually very similar to the Vanquish Zagato. It has a long nose, a sporty roof, and virtually no decklid to the rear. Sure, it’s roofline and tailgate aren’t as sleek as the Zagato’s, but it’s a proper shooting brake model. And, the new features it received in 2016 make it more appealing than the FF. Luxury is a given inside the cabin, with nearly every surfaced draped in leather, Alcantara, aluminum, and carbon-fiber. Unlike the Vanquish, it also has a number of race-inspired features, like instrument cluster with the white clock in the middle and the flat-bottom, multi-control steering wheel. Output-wise, it’s the more potent option, with its 6.3-liter V-12 engine generating a whopping 680 horsepower and 514 pound-feet of torque. This translates into a 0 to 60 mph sprint of 3.3 seconds, which should be at least two tenths quicker than the Aston Martin. Top speed is also far superior at 209 mph. Pricing starts at a little over $300,000, so it’s more affordable too.

Read our full review of the 2017 Ferrari GTC4Lusso.

Conclusion


2018 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake - image 740277

When Aston Martin unveiled the Vanquish Zagato Concept as I said to myself “that’s one hell of a sexy coupe” and I just knew that we will eventually see a production model. And, Aston Martin delivered shortly after. But I honestly didn’t expect the British brand to expand the Vanquish Zagato nameplate to include four different models. Aston Martin has rolled out quite a few Zagato models in the past, but no project was a complex as this one. And on top of the usual coupe and convertible, we also got a speedster and a shooting brake. Needless to say, all of them are spectacular in their own right, but the Speedster and the Shooting Brake are by far the more exotic versions, especially since you don’t see these body styles on the road quite often.

Up until now, the Speedster was my favorite variant of the Vanquish Zagato, but I just fell in love with the new Shooting Brake model. I must admit that I am a fan of vintage shooting brakes, but I’d take the Vanquish Zagato in a heartbeat. Assuming it wouldn’t be this exclusive and expensive. But hey, these attributes are part of what makes a car stand out from the pack.

  • Leave it
    • Exclusive and expensive
    • Not so much official info

References

Aston Martin Vanquish


2017 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato - image 727558

Read our full review on the 2017 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato.


2017 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Volante - image 685633

Read our full review on the 2017 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Volante.


2018 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Speedster - image 726604

Read our full review on the 2018 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Speedster.


2018 Aston Martin Vanquish S - image 695571

Read our full review on the 2018 Aston Martin Vanquish S.

PostHeaderIcon Lexus RC F Limited Edition

2017 Lexus RC F Limited Edition

Founded less than 30 years ago as of 2017, Lexus has come a long way in the luxury market, now offering quite a few models that can give production from BMW, Mercedes-Benz, and Audi a run for their money. The Japanese company has been growing so fast it’s already celebrating a full decade since it launched its first performance-oriented vehicle wearing the now familiar “F” badge. To mark the anniversary, Lexus launched two limited-edition models at the2017 Tokyo Motor Show, one of which is the RC F Limited Edition.

While the name might not be very inspiring, this RC F has plenty of new features to brag about. From a wide array of carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic body elements to an exclusive upholstery layout and upgraded suspension, the limited-edition coupe proves that the RC F has yet to reach its full potential. Unfortunately, this beefed-up two-door won’t make it to the United States, but you’ll have to keep on reading to learn more about that.

Read more about the Lexus RC F limited edition.

What makes the Lexus RC F limited edition special

  • CFRP body parts
  • Upgraded splitter and diffuser
  • Matte grey paint
  • Heat Blue upholstery
  • White contrast stitching
  • CFRP trim inside the cabin
  • Performance shock absorbers
  • Titanium mufflers
  • Limited to only 50 units

2017 Lexus RC F Limited Edition - image 740862
“The special-edition RC F stands out thanks to a range of carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic (CFRP) elements”

While exterior modifications are far from radical, the special-edition RC F stands out thanks to a range of carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic (CFRP) elements. Up front, we can see the lightweight material at each corner of the bumper, in the form of race-inspired winglets. Adding to the fact that they are made from CFRP, these elements aren’t fitted on the standard RC F either, so it’s more than just a material upgrade. The engine hood is also made from CFRP, which should translate into significant weight loss. The fact that it has a transparent finish that shows the carbon layer makes it that much better.

More CFRP goodness is visible on the sides, where Lexus replaced both the side skirts and the front fender intake covers with this material. Just like the hood, it has a glossy transparent finish. The standard model has these elements painted in the same color as the body, so they don’t stand out as much. Around back, both the diffuser and the lower bumper now feature CFRP elements. What’s more, the diffuser has a redesigned center section with three small fins. The spoiler was seen on the standard model.

To top things off, Lexus painted the car in matte grey for a nice contrast with the glossy CFRP elements.


2017 Lexus RC F Limited Edition - image 740861
“Called Heat Blue, the new interior color adorns the steering wheel, the seats, the gear shift knob, and the center console”

Inside, the limited-edition is pretty much standard business, but Lexus did introduce a new, exclusive color. Called Heat Blue, this light blue color adorns the steering wheel, the seats, the gear shift knob, and the side panels of the center console. There’s blue leather atop the instrument cluster hood too, as well as blue stitching in the door panels, The steering wheel, the dashboard, the seats, and the shifter have contrasting white stitching. Finally, there’s carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic trim on the door panels and atop the glove compartment door.

Lexus mentioned no upgrades under the hood, so it’s safe to assume that it features the same 5.0-liter V-8 as the regular model. The naturally aspirated unit cranks out 467 horsepower and 389 pound-feet of torque and pushes the coupe from 0 to 60 mph in 4.4 seconds. Top speed is limited to 170 mph. However, the limited-edition RC F gained lightweight titanium mufflers and performance shock absorbers. So, while it might not be quicker in a straight line, it will provide improved steering stability, which means it should be a bit quicker on the race track.


2017 Lexus RC F Limited Edition - image 740856
“The limited-edition RC F gained lightweight titanium mufflers and performance shock absorbers”

Production is limited to only 50 units, all of which will be sold in Japan. Pricing information is not available as of this writing.

References

Lexus RC


2015 Lexus RC F - image 567567

Read our full review on the 2017 Lexus RC F.


2015 - 2016 Lexus RC - image 649169

Read our full review on the 2017 Lexus RC.


2017 Tokyo Motor Show – Visitor's Guide - image 737628

Read more Tokyo Motor Show news.

PostHeaderIcon Lexus RC F Limited Edition

2017 Lexus RC F Limited Edition

Founded less than 30 years ago as of 2017, Lexus has come a long way in the luxury market, now offering quite a few models that can give production from BMW, Mercedes-Benz, and Audi a run for their money. The Japanese company has been growing so fast it’s already celebrating a full decade since it launched its first performance-oriented vehicle wearing the now familiar “F” badge. To mark the anniversary, Lexus launched two limited-edition models at the2017 Tokyo Motor Show, one of which is the RC F Limited Edition.

While the name might not be very inspiring, this RC F has plenty of new features to brag about. From a wide array of carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic body elements to an exclusive upholstery layout and upgraded suspension, the limited-edition coupe proves that the RC F has yet to reach its full potential. Unfortunately, this beefed-up two-door won’t make it to the United States, but you’ll have to keep on reading to learn more about that.

Read more about the Lexus RC F limited edition.

What makes the Lexus RC F limited edition special

  • CFRP body parts
  • Upgraded splitter and diffuser
  • Matte grey paint
  • Heat Blue upholstery
  • White contrast stitching
  • CFRP trim inside the cabin
  • Performance shock absorbers
  • Titanium mufflers
  • Limited to only 50 units

2017 Lexus RC F Limited Edition - image 740862
“The special-edition RC F stands out thanks to a range of carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic (CFRP) elements”

While exterior modifications are far from radical, the special-edition RC F stands out thanks to a range of carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic (CFRP) elements. Up front, we can see the lightweight material at each corner of the bumper, in the form of race-inspired winglets. Adding to the fact that they are made from CFRP, these elements aren’t fitted on the standard RC F either, so it’s more than just a material upgrade. The engine hood is also made from CFRP, which should translate into significant weight loss. The fact that it has a transparent finish that shows the carbon layer makes it that much better.

More CFRP goodness is visible on the sides, where Lexus replaced both the side skirts and the front fender intake covers with this material. Just like the hood, it has a glossy transparent finish. The standard model has these elements painted in the same color as the body, so they don’t stand out as much. Around back, both the diffuser and the lower bumper now feature CFRP elements. What’s more, the diffuser has a redesigned center section with three small fins. The spoiler was seen on the standard model.

To top things off, Lexus painted the car in matte grey for a nice contrast with the glossy CFRP elements.


2017 Lexus RC F Limited Edition - image 740861
“Called Heat Blue, the new interior color adorns the steering wheel, the seats, the gear shift knob, and the center console”

Inside, the limited-edition is pretty much standard business, but Lexus did introduce a new, exclusive color. Called Heat Blue, this light blue color adorns the steering wheel, the seats, the gear shift knob, and the side panels of the center console. There’s blue leather atop the instrument cluster hood too, as well as blue stitching in the door panels, The steering wheel, the dashboard, the seats, and the shifter have contrasting white stitching. Finally, there’s carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic trim on the door panels and atop the glove compartment door.

Lexus mentioned no upgrades under the hood, so it’s safe to assume that it features the same 5.0-liter V-8 as the regular model. The naturally aspirated unit cranks out 467 horsepower and 389 pound-feet of torque and pushes the coupe from 0 to 60 mph in 4.4 seconds. Top speed is limited to 170 mph. However, the limited-edition RC F gained lightweight titanium mufflers and performance shock absorbers. So, while it might not be quicker in a straight line, it will provide improved steering stability, which means it should be a bit quicker on the race track.


2017 Lexus RC F Limited Edition - image 740856
“The limited-edition RC F gained lightweight titanium mufflers and performance shock absorbers”

Production is limited to only 50 units, all of which will be sold in Japan. Pricing information is not available as of this writing.

References

Lexus RC


2015 Lexus RC F - image 567567

Read our full review on the 2017 Lexus RC F.


2015 - 2016 Lexus RC - image 649169

Read our full review on the 2017 Lexus RC.


2017 Tokyo Motor Show – Visitor's Guide - image 737628

Read more Tokyo Motor Show news.

PostHeaderIcon Ford Mustang RTR

2018 Ford Mustang RTR

Part of the Ford Mustang’s appeal lies in its ability to be easily customized. We’ve seen so many versions of the ‘Stang over the years, and there are a handful of them that are head and shoulders above the rest, including the Ford Mustang RTR. Created by Ford in partnership with Pro Formula Drift driver Vaughn Gittin Jr., the Mustang RTR stands tall as one of the sickest interpretations of the iconic muscle car. It’s essentially a Mustang on steroids, accomplished in part because Ford is always looking for ways to improve the car’s status as one of the best pony machines in the market today.

Those of you who are familiar with the RTR badge will know that it’s become somewhat of a tradition for Ford and Gittin Jr. to collaborate on this specific kind of creation. In fact, the past decade has given birth to a good number of Mustang RTRs, ranging from the subtle to the over-the-top. Hard to think of the 2014 Mustang RTR as anything but outlandish, but that’s the whole point on why the RTR badge has become synonymous with Ford’s legendary muscle car. This year, a new version of the Mustang RTR is set to make its debut at the 2017 SEMA Show, and really, where else would it do it? Ford and Gittin Jr.’s aftermarket firm are once again heavily involved in its creation, and the result is nothing short of our expectations. Improved looks, more power, and a seal of approval from one of the best race drifters in the world. This is what awaits us when we get a hold of the latest version of the Mustang RTR.

Continue after the jump to read more about the 2018 Ford Mustang RTR

Exterior

  • Front lip spoiler
  • Sculpted hood
  • RTR signature LED grille lighting
  • RTR Appearance Package
  • RTR graphics
  • RTR 19″ Tech 7 wheels w/ Nitto 555G2 tires

2018 Ford Mustang RTR - image 741085
“The RTR Design Package features a steady stream of design pieces meant to enhance the muscle car’s visual looks”

If pictures painted thousands of words, the Mustang RTR is going to turn some serious heads. While it’s somewhat true that almost all of the signature elements from the last RTR remains here, the underlying appeal of the special edition Mustang still holds weight. The name of the game in this section is the RTR Design Package, which features a steady stream of design pieces meant to enhance the muscle car’s visual looks. The triangular-shaped LED accent lights on the grille count as one of the most distinct exterior features, but there’s also a new front splitter and a more sculpted hood in the mix now. Combine these aero parts with black accent striping on the hood and side profile and a new set of 19-inch Tech 7 wheels wrapped in Nitto 555G2 tires and you have the makings of a Mustang RTR that does its predecessors proud.

It’s admittedly not as flashy as some of the past Mustang RTR’s we’ve seen before, but remember, those versions Gittin Jr. created with the help of Monster Energy and Nitto tires were race-spec units of the RTR. This one, like the more subtle RTR-spec versions that have also come out, are road-production models. If you want to see the difference, check out the photos below.


2014 Ford Mustang RTR Monster Energy Nitto Tire by Vaughn Gittin - image 500929

2015 Ford Mustang RTR - image 575812

Note: Photos of the 2014 Ford Mustang RTR by Monster Energy, Nitto Tires, and Vaughn Gittin Jr. and the 2015 Ford Mustang RTR.

Interior

  • Recaro sports seats
  • Signed dash plaque by Vaughn Gittin Jr.
  • RTR shift knob
  • RTR floor mats

2018 Ford Mustang - image 702250

Note: Standard 2018 Ford Mustang pictured here.

“There are some noteworthy pieces like the Recaro sports seats and the signed dash plaque by Gittin Jr. himself”

Judging by what we’ve come to know about past Ford Mustang RTRs, the road-spec versions are lacking in terms of exclusive interior goodies. There are some noteworthy pieces like the Recaro sports seats and the signed dash plaque by Gittin Jr. himself, but for the most part, the most you can expect are throw-in items like the RTR shift knob and if you really want to go all-out, the RTR-branded floor mats.

That’s likely the extent of what we can expect from the RTR unit, though Ford may still have a few more surprises up its sleeve once the special edition Mustang makes its official debut at SEMA.

Drivetrain

  • Three Spec options
  • Around 700 horsepower for the Spec 3 tune

2018 Ford Mustang RTR - image 741088
“Details about the Spec 1 and Spec 2 tunes are expected to be announced at SEMA”

Specific details surrounding the power and performance credentials of the Mustang RTR are still shrouded in secrecy, we can at least expect it to hit the magic number of 700 horsepower. That’s the indication Ford has given us as it pertains to the Spec 3 state of tune that the Mustang RTR will have at its disposal. On the other end, details about the Spec 1 and Spec 2 tunes are expected to be announced at SEMA, so that’s two things we can at least look forward to. Regardless of their specific states, the 2018 Mustang RTR should come with noticeable power and performance improvements over its predecessor. Not by much, but still something worthwhile. My best guess would be that the Spec 1 RTR will simply be a design and aero-focused tune. That means it’s going to carry the same output as the stock model, or about 460 horsepower and 410 pound-feet of torque at the tilt.

As far as Spec 2 is concerned, the previous road-spec version of the RTR carried over with a 30-horsepower increase from the standard unit so given what the 2018 Mustang has at its disposal, somewhere in the territory of 500 horsepower and 450 pound-feet of torque is a possibility. The incremental gains will likely be credited to software upgrades.


2018 Ford Mustang RTR - image 741091
“Adjustable sway bars and a sports exhaust system should also be featured elements.”

Last but not least is Spec 3. This is where a supercharger and a few other fun bits, including an intercooler and an upgraded fuel injection system, were thrown into the mix and the result of that on the last Mustang RTR was an output of 670 horsepower. If Ford decided to adopt the same approach using the Mustang’s new engine configuration, 700 ponies is definitely attainable.

On the suspension side, lowering springs are a lock to be included, owing to the fact that they’re included in the RTR Design Package. That said, adjustable sway bars and a sports exhaust system should also be featured elements.

Pricing


2018 Ford Mustang RTR - image 741087

Ahh, yes, The question that trumps all manner of features and oddities for each and every car. How much is it? Well, Ford hasn’t released a price tag yet, but we were hinted on the likelihood that the Mustang RTR will carry a price tag of somewhere in the neighborhood of $65,000.

That figure came to our attention because of a giveaway being sponsored by American Muscle. Yep, one lucky Mustang aficionado will win one of the first Mustang RTRs to come out of production. The drawing isn’t taking place until April 6, 2018, but the giveaway did mention that the special edition Mustang carries an “approximate retail value” of $65,000. It’s far from a slam dunk that the figure is the exact price, but at least it’s somewhere in the neighborhood of that.

Those who miss out on the giveaway will still get a shot at owning the car as it’s scheduled to become available at select Ford dealerships sometime in the spring of next year.

Conclusion


2018 Ford Mustang RTR - image 741086

It’s Ford. It’s Vaughn Gittin Jr. It’s the new Ford Mustang RTR. Really, what could go wrong? I certainly don’t expect any hiccups as far as the new ’Stang RTR is concerned. We’ve seen what the protagonists are capable of in the past so there’s no reason to believe that this new version is going to be a letdown. Regardless of what we see at SEMA, I fully expect the new Mustang RTR to be a hot-ticket item when it goes up on sale next year, as it should since Ford and Vaughn Gittin Jr. have been doing this racket for almost a decade now with no let-up in sight. Seems like they’re doing something good so why mess with that?

  • Leave it
    • Not much happening on the interior
    • Expected bigger and more profound improvements from previous version
    • Availability could be limited

References

Ford Mustang


2018 Ford Mustang - image 702950

Read our full review on the 2018 Ford Mustang.


2014 Ford Mustang RTR Monster Energy Nitto Tire by Vaughn Gittin - image 500924

Read our full review on the 2014 Ford Mustang RTR Monster Energy Nitto Tire by Vaughn Gittin.


2015 Ford Mustang RTR - image 575812

Read our full review on the 2015 Ford Mustang RTR.

PostHeaderIcon Ford Mustang RTR

2018 Ford Mustang RTR

Part of the Ford Mustang’s appeal lies in its ability to be easily customized. We’ve seen so many versions of the ‘Stang over the years, and there are a handful of them that are head and shoulders above the rest, including the Ford Mustang RTR. Created by Ford in partnership with Pro Formula Drift driver Vaughn Gittin Jr., the Mustang RTR stands tall as one of the sickest interpretations of the iconic muscle car. It’s essentially a Mustang on steroids, accomplished in part because Ford is always looking for ways to improve the car’s status as one of the best pony machines in the market today.

Those of you who are familiar with the RTR badge will know that it’s become somewhat of a tradition for Ford and Gittin Jr. to collaborate on this specific kind of creation. In fact, the past decade has given birth to a good number of Mustang RTRs, ranging from the subtle to the over-the-top. Hard to think of the 2014 Mustang RTR as anything but outlandish, but that’s the whole point on why the RTR badge has become synonymous with Ford’s legendary muscle car. This year, a new version of the Mustang RTR is set to make its debut at the 2017 SEMA Show, and really, where else would it do it? Ford and Gittin Jr.’s aftermarket firm are once again heavily involved in its creation, and the result is nothing short of our expectations. Improved looks, more power, and a seal of approval from one of the best race drifters in the world. This is what awaits us when we get a hold of the latest version of the Mustang RTR.

Continue after the jump to read more about the 2018 Ford Mustang RTR

Exterior

  • Front lip spoiler
  • Sculpted hood
  • RTR signature LED grille lighting
  • RTR Appearance Package
  • RTR graphics
  • RTR 19″ Tech 7 wheels w/ Nitto 555G2 tires

2018 Ford Mustang RTR - image 741085
“The RTR Design Package features a steady stream of design pieces meant to enhance the muscle car’s visual looks”

If pictures painted thousands of words, the Mustang RTR is going to turn some serious heads. While it’s somewhat true that almost all of the signature elements from the last RTR remains here, the underlying appeal of the special edition Mustang still holds weight. The name of the game in this section is the RTR Design Package, which features a steady stream of design pieces meant to enhance the muscle car’s visual looks. The triangular-shaped LED accent lights on the grille count as one of the most distinct exterior features, but there’s also a new front splitter and a more sculpted hood in the mix now. Combine these aero parts with black accent striping on the hood and side profile and a new set of 19-inch Tech 7 wheels wrapped in Nitto 555G2 tires and you have the makings of a Mustang RTR that does its predecessors proud.

It’s admittedly not as flashy as some of the past Mustang RTR’s we’ve seen before, but remember, those versions Gittin Jr. created with the help of Monster Energy and Nitto tires were race-spec units of the RTR. This one, like the more subtle RTR-spec versions that have also come out, are road-production models. If you want to see the difference, check out the photos below.


2014 Ford Mustang RTR Monster Energy Nitto Tire by Vaughn Gittin - image 500929

2015 Ford Mustang RTR - image 575812

Note: Photos of the 2014 Ford Mustang RTR by Monster Energy, Nitto Tires, and Vaughn Gittin Jr. and the 2015 Ford Mustang RTR.

Interior

  • Recaro sports seats
  • Signed dash plaque by Vaughn Gittin Jr.
  • RTR shift knob
  • RTR floor mats

2018 Ford Mustang - image 702250

Note: Standard 2018 Ford Mustang pictured here.

“There are some noteworthy pieces like the Recaro sports seats and the signed dash plaque by Gittin Jr. himself”

Judging by what we’ve come to know about past Ford Mustang RTRs, the road-spec versions are lacking in terms of exclusive interior goodies. There are some noteworthy pieces like the Recaro sports seats and the signed dash plaque by Gittin Jr. himself, but for the most part, the most you can expect are throw-in items like the RTR shift knob and if you really want to go all-out, the RTR-branded floor mats.

That’s likely the extent of what we can expect from the RTR unit, though Ford may still have a few more surprises up its sleeve once the special edition Mustang makes its official debut at SEMA.

Drivetrain

  • Three Spec options
  • Around 700 horsepower for the Spec 3 tune

2018 Ford Mustang RTR - image 741088
“Details about the Spec 1 and Spec 2 tunes are expected to be announced at SEMA”

Specific details surrounding the power and performance credentials of the Mustang RTR are still shrouded in secrecy, we can at least expect it to hit the magic number of 700 horsepower. That’s the indication Ford has given us as it pertains to the Spec 3 state of tune that the Mustang RTR will have at its disposal. On the other end, details about the Spec 1 and Spec 2 tunes are expected to be announced at SEMA, so that’s two things we can at least look forward to. Regardless of their specific states, the 2018 Mustang RTR should come with noticeable power and performance improvements over its predecessor. Not by much, but still something worthwhile. My best guess would be that the Spec 1 RTR will simply be a design and aero-focused tune. That means it’s going to carry the same output as the stock model, or about 460 horsepower and 410 pound-feet of torque at the tilt.

As far as Spec 2 is concerned, the previous road-spec version of the RTR carried over with a 30-horsepower increase from the standard unit so given what the 2018 Mustang has at its disposal, somewhere in the territory of 500 horsepower and 450 pound-feet of torque is a possibility. The incremental gains will likely be credited to software upgrades.


2018 Ford Mustang RTR - image 741091
“Adjustable sway bars and a sports exhaust system should also be featured elements.”

Last but not least is Spec 3. This is where a supercharger and a few other fun bits, including an intercooler and an upgraded fuel injection system, were thrown into the mix and the result of that on the last Mustang RTR was an output of 670 horsepower. If Ford decided to adopt the same approach using the Mustang’s new engine configuration, 700 ponies is definitely attainable.

On the suspension side, lowering springs are a lock to be included, owing to the fact that they’re included in the RTR Design Package. That said, adjustable sway bars and a sports exhaust system should also be featured elements.

Pricing


2018 Ford Mustang RTR - image 741087

Ahh, yes, The question that trumps all manner of features and oddities for each and every car. How much is it? Well, Ford hasn’t released a price tag yet, but we were hinted on the likelihood that the Mustang RTR will carry a price tag of somewhere in the neighborhood of $65,000.

That figure came to our attention because of a giveaway being sponsored by American Muscle. Yep, one lucky Mustang aficionado will win one of the first Mustang RTRs to come out of production. The drawing isn’t taking place until April 6, 2018, but the giveaway did mention that the special edition Mustang carries an “approximate retail value” of $65,000. It’s far from a slam dunk that the figure is the exact price, but at least it’s somewhere in the neighborhood of that.

Those who miss out on the giveaway will still get a shot at owning the car as it’s scheduled to become available at select Ford dealerships sometime in the spring of next year.

Conclusion


2018 Ford Mustang RTR - image 741086

It’s Ford. It’s Vaughn Gittin Jr. It’s the new Ford Mustang RTR. Really, what could go wrong? I certainly don’t expect any hiccups as far as the new ’Stang RTR is concerned. We’ve seen what the protagonists are capable of in the past so there’s no reason to believe that this new version is going to be a letdown. Regardless of what we see at SEMA, I fully expect the new Mustang RTR to be a hot-ticket item when it goes up on sale next year, as it should since Ford and Vaughn Gittin Jr. have been doing this racket for almost a decade now with no let-up in sight. Seems like they’re doing something good so why mess with that?

  • Leave it
    • Not much happening on the interior
    • Expected bigger and more profound improvements from previous version
    • Availability could be limited

References

Ford Mustang


2018 Ford Mustang - image 702950

Read our full review on the 2018 Ford Mustang.


2014 Ford Mustang RTR Monster Energy Nitto Tire by Vaughn Gittin - image 500924

Read our full review on the 2014 Ford Mustang RTR Monster Energy Nitto Tire by Vaughn Gittin.


2015 Ford Mustang RTR - image 575812

Read our full review on the 2015 Ford Mustang RTR.

PostHeaderIcon Chevrolet Camaro Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Edition

Stop the presses if you’ve seen this one before. Chevrolet and Hot Wheels have been business partners for quite some time, and the fruits of that partnership have given us a handful of Camaro Hot Wheels special editions over the past years. We’re getting a new version of the same special edition at the 2017 SEMA Auto Show, though this time, we’re also getting something extra on the side courtesy of the Hot Wheels’ 50th Anniversary Edition.

Special is as special gets, and we’re getting two doses of it with the 2018 Chevrolet Camaro Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Edition. The first of these two SEs come in 2LT and 2SS coupe and convertible trims of the muscle car. The aesthetic elements of the Camaro Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Edition is a cool callback to the 1968 Camaro that was one of the first cars to be immortalized in Hot Wheels format. In fact, the ’68 Camaro holds the distinction of being the first car to get a Hot Wheels casting. 50 years later, that milestone is being celebrated in typical bombastic Hot Wheels fashion with the inclusion of the Hot Wheels package on the purpose-built 2018 COPO Camaro drag race car. These two special edition Camaros are expected to headline the Camaro contingent at SEMA, and there’s no reason to think that any other custom-built version of the pony car will compare to the appeal of these two commemorative crown pieces.

Continue after the jump to read more about the Chevrolet Camaro Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Edition

What makes the Chevrolet Camaro Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Edition special

  • Orange Crush paint
  • Satin Graphite stripes / Silver Ice Metallic accents
  • 20-inch Satin Graphite forged aluminum wheels
  • 50th Anniversary Hot Wheels fender badges
  • Galvano Chrome inserts on the front grille
  • Orange brake calipers
  • Dark taillamps
  • Black taillamp panel with the Hot Wheels emblem
  • Black Chevrolet bowtie emblems
  • Jet Black leather-appointed interior
  • Orange kneepads on the doors and orange safety belts
  • 50th Anniversary Hot Wheels badge on the steering wheel
  • Illuminated door sill plates with 50th Anniversary Hot Wheels badges
  • 3.6-liter V-6 engine (LT trim) with 323 horsepower and 278 pound-feet of torque
  • 6.2-liter V-8 engine (SS trim) with 426 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque

2018 Chevrolet Camaro Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Edition - image 740867
“In keeping with the theme of tying the SE up to Hot Wheels’ 50th anniversary, the Camaro receives a striking Crush Orange paint finish”

For the record, we’re talking about two special edition Chevrolet Camaros here. The first one is available on all 2LT and 2SS coupes and convertibles. In keeping with the theme of tying the SE up to Hot Wheels’ 50th anniversary, the Camaro receives a striking Crush Orange paint finish. It’s not exactly the exact same shade as the Hugger Orange paint on the 1968 Hot Wheels Camaro, but it certainly comes close to it. Providing a nice contrast to the splashy and dominant orange color are Satin Graphite stripes with Silver Ice Metallic accents, though you can probably just use “grey” and “white,” and it’s going to mean the same thing. The use of the Satin Graphite shade continues on the ground effects, wheels, and the Hot Wheels badges on the fenders. Speaking of the wheels, the Hot Wheels Camaro sits on a set of 20-inch forged aluminum wheels that are finished in, you guessed it, Satin Graphite. It’s hard to make out from the photos too, but those wheels also feature milled faces and unique center caps. Other additions come in the form of dark taillights, Galvano chrome inserts right on the front grille, and Chevy’s own bowtie emblem getting the all-black treatment.


2018 Chevrolet Camaro Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Edition - image 740872
“The cabin showcases an explosive combination of black and orange upholstery”

Move inside the car and prepare yourself for a cabin that showcases an explosive combination of black and orange upholstery. The treatment is pretty slick though, especially the orange stitching on the black leather. That’s a nice touch. The embossed headrests and the Hot Wheels banding on the steering wheel and door sills are perfect identifiers of the car’s special edition roots, while the orange knee pads are there for reasons that are unclear to me. But, hey, the orange seat belts are another nice touch to the cabin.

You would think that a car like this would get an engine upgrade, right? Well, if history is any indication, it won’t, and I don’t expect it to have any. Still, you can get it with one of two engines. Your first choice is a 3.6-liter V-6 that’s good for 323 horsepower and 278 pound-feet of torque and a sprint to 60 mph in just 5.9 seconds. If you want the big boy Camaro SS unit, you’ll get a massive 6.2-liter V-8 with 426 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque at your disposal. Likewise, that 5.9-second time gets shaved by over a second to 4.8 seconds.


2018 Chevrolet Camaro Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Edition - image 740869
“2,500 units of the Camaro will receive the Hot Wheels package, which itself is an option priced at $4,995”

Availability shouldn’t be an issue, especially if you jump on the wagon early. According to Chevy, 2,500 units of the Camaro will receive the Hot Wheels package, which itself is an option priced at $4,995. Be wary, though, because these units sell out quickly. So if you’re not up on your toes when the package becomes available, you might be out of luck.

The Chevrolet COPO Camaro Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Edition

  • Orange Crush paint
  • Satin Graphite stripes / Silver Ice Metallic accents
  • 50th Anniversary Hot Wheels fender badges
  • Hood scoop
  • Fat Hoosier tires
  • Naturally aspirated 302-cubic-inch Gen V small-block V-8 engine (standard)
  • Supercharged 5.7-liter V-8 engine (optional)
  • Naturally aspirated 7.0-liter V-8 engine (optional)

“This Hot Wheels SE is the living embodiment of the toy car maker’s over-the-top philosophy”

Far more exclusive is the COPO Camaro Hot Wheels Edition, which might as well be the closest thing to a life-sized Hot Wheels car Chevrolet has ever created. We’re talking about a factory-built drag racer here, folks. And, while the striking orange paint scheme does make it a little cartoonish, this Hot Wheels SE is the living embodiment of the toy car maker’s over-the-top philosophy. The massive bulge on the hood and the fat Hoosier tires further slam home the car’s drag racing credentials. It’s worth noting, too, that the car that will be on display at SEMA will get an exclusive Supercrush Orange paint finish. That’s not going to be the case though for the available lot that Chevy will offer; they’re getting the same Orange Crush treatment as the “standard” Hot Wheels SEs.

Vanity takes these special edition Camaros far, but in the case of the COPO Camaro, it’s not the most important part of the whole package. That distinction goes to the engine or, at least in this case, engines. Three different versions are available, including a standard naturally aspirated 302-cubic-inch, Gen V, small-block, V-8 engine that’s based on the LT1 unit found under the hood of the Camaro SS. If that engine’s not to your liking, you can opt for a supercharged, 5.7-liter V-8 engine or a bigger, naturally aspirated, 7.0-liter V-8 powerhouse. Chevy made no mention of power numbers, but it did say that a COPO Camaro using the supercharged V-8 will be able to hit a quarter mile in eight seconds with trap speeds approaching 160 mph.

“The COPO Camaro Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary is far more limited than its standard counterpart”

The cost of getting a Chevrolet COPO Camaro Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Edition is unclear at this point, though if you’re interested, Chevy’s already taking in registrations from potential buyers. Make no mistake though; the COPO Camaro Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary is far more limited than its standard counterpart as only 69 units of the actual COPO Camaro will be made available. How many will get the Hot Wheels SE treatment is another question entirely, though don’t expect it to be more than the 69 units that Chevy’s building of the COPO drag racer.

References

Chevrolet Camaro


2016 - 2017 Chevrolet Camaro - image 630471

Read our full review on the 2017 Chevrolet Camaro.


2016 Chevrolet COPO Camaro - image 653876

Read our full review on the 2016 Chevrolet COPO Camaro.

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.

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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 Lotus Elise Cup 260

Arguably the most iconic Lotus still in production, the Elise has been around for more than two decades. Now in its third generation, the tiny Elise is heading toward a major redesign that will bring a faster, lighter car into dealerships. But despite working on a brand-new model, Lotus isn’t yet willing to give up on the current Elise, and it keeps pushing the limits of the small roadster with all sorts of limited-edition packages and upgrades. With several new iterations launched in 2016 and 2017, Lotus has prepared yet another version of its supercharged two-door. It’s called the Cup 260 and its the lightest, quickest road-legal Elise built to date.

Developed as the company prepares for the 70th anniversary of when founder Colin Chapman built his first car in 1948, the Cup 260 is based on the Cup 250 model that came in 2016 and includes nearly all of the lightweight Elise Cup options as standard. It also sports the latest visual upgrades that Lotus introduced for the standard Elise, as well as a comprehensive aerodynamic package that adds a tremendous amount of downforce at high speeds. Naturally, it’s the quickest Elise on the brand’s Hethel track, and its production is limited to only a handful of examples. Find out more about that below.

Continue reading to learn more about the Lotus Elise Cup 260.

What makes the Lotus Elise Cup 260 special

Unique, Aggressive Exterior


2017 Lotus Elise Cup 260 - image 739735
“The front bumper was revised with a wider and taller center grille”

A quick look at the Cup 260 will leave you wondering what changed compared to the Cup 250. Well, upgrades aren’t exactly visible upon first glance, but take a closer look and you’ll notice a few new features. For starters, there are a couple of louvers atop each front wheel fender. These vents not only give the Elise a more race-inspired look, but also reduce aerodynamic lift.

The front bumper was also revised with a wider and taller center grille, as well as significantly larger side vents. Down below, the standard carbon-fiber splitter has smaller winglets on the sides. Onto the sides, we can see a black panel on the rear fender, just below the intake that feeds air into the engine. The latter is also slightly different, now missing the center fin and sporting a fine mesh. Surprisingly enough, the Cup 250’s aggressive carbon-fiber side skirts have been removed.


2017 Lotus Elise Cup 260 - image 739738
“Based on the Lotus 3-Eleven, the new rear wing turns the Elise into a full-fledged race car”

The rear end boasts the biggest change in terms of aerodynamics. While the Cup 250 has a pretty large wing, the Cup 260 gained a much bigger element that’s also mounted higher. Based on the rear wing of the bonkers Lotus 3-Eleven, this feature turns the Elise into a full-fledged race car. The huge wing is backed by a revised diffuser that’s smaller than the Cup 250’s, but exually aggressive. A center-mounted exhaust pipe and the Elise’s new taillights with smaller inner reverse lights round off the look.

The sports car is also equipped with ultra-lightweight, forged alloy wheels measuring 16 inches at the front and 17 inches in the rear, both wrapped in Yokohama Advan Neova tires. Much like the Cup 250, it comes with a wide array of carbon-fiber features, including the sill covers, roll hoop cover, front access panel, and engine cover. The motorsport-style polycarbonate backlight glass also helps cut down weight by at least 13 pounds.

Finally, the Elise Cup 260 has a laurel wreath decal on the left buttress and the Union Jack on both the rear wing endplates. Optionally, the car can be ordered in the iconic Championship Gold color, as seen in the official photos above.

Carbon-Fiber Seats and Trim


2017 Lotus Elise Cup 260 - image 739736
“The carbon-fiber seats are wrapped in black Alcantara with red or yellow stitching”

The interior is pretty much identical to the Cup 250, featuring the same carbon-fiber race seats and open gearbox mechanism. The seats are wrapped in black Alcantara with red or yellow stitching, as are the door panels. The package also includes body-keyed color inserts in the seats, transmission console, HVAC trim, and window switches, which means you can have a bunch of cool Championship Gold accents inside the cabin. The exposed aluminum and carbon-fiber elements, including new instrument cluster cover, complete the race-inspired look. Options include an Acantara steering wheel and matching sill covers, leather or tartan trim packs for the seats and door panels. Tech geeks can also opt for an in-car entertainment system with iPod and Bluetooth connectivity.

250 Horsepower and a Record Lap


2017 Lotus Elise Cup 260 - image 739734
“Lotus upgraded the Toyota-sourced engine with new induction components and revised calibration”

Under the hood, the Cup 260 hides the same supercharged, 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine as the Cup 250. However, Lotus upgraded the Toyota-sourced unit with new induction components and revised calibration. As a result, the engine now generates 250 horsepower and 188 pound-feet of torque. That’s seven horsepower and four pound-feet more than the Cup 250. It might not seem like a lot on its own, but it makes a big difference when combined with the enhanced aerodynamics and the lighter body and chassis.

Specifically, the Cup 260 hits 60 mph from a standing start in 3.8 seconds, a tenth-second quicker than the Cup 250, and laps the Hethel track in just one minute and 32 seconds. That’s an impressive 2.5 seconds faster than the Elise Cup 250! This is obviously the result of the Cup 260 being 33 pounds lighter (1,989 pounds unladen and 1,900 pounds dry), but it’s also because the revised design and aero configuration generates up to 397 pounds of downforce at 151 mph, a 44-percent gain over the Cup 250.


2017 Lotus Elise Cup 260 - image 739737
“The Cup 260 hits 60 mph from a standing start in 3.8 seconds”

The race-bred chassis is also responsabile for the outstanding performance. The roadster rides on a fully independent double wishbone suspension with an adjustable front anti-roll bar, Nitron coaxial coil springs, and, for the first time on an Elise, adjustable Nitron high-performance dampers. Stopping power comes from two-piece brake discs combined with AP Racing twin-piston calipers at the front axle and Brembo calipers to the rear wheels.

Limited Production Run


2017 Lotus Elise Cup 260 - image 739740

Pricing information is not yet available, but the Elise Cup 260 will be limited to only 30 units. This means it will cost significantly more than the Cup 250, which retails from £45,60 in the United Kingdom and €61,100 in Germany. The Lotus Elise isn’t available in the United States due to safety regulations, so don’t get your hopes up on getting the Cup 260 on this side of the pond.

References

Lotus Elise


2016 Lotus Elise Cup 250 - image 665809

Read our full review on the 2016 Lotus Elise Cup 250.


2015 Lotus Elise S Cup - image 611648

Read our full review on the 2015 Lotus Elise S Cup.


2011 Lotus Elise - image 359235

Read our full review on the 2017 Lotus Elise.

PostHeaderIcon Mercedes-AMG G 65 Final Edition

With almost 40 years of history now in the books, it’s time for the Merc G-Wagen to get a substantial update. But before that happens (the new-gen is expected to show at the Detroit Motor Show next year), the German automaker is releasing a new, glossier, limited production run dubbed the G 65 Final Edition. Bearing the same AMG-branded bones as the standard G 65, the Final Edition adds a host of aesthetic enhancements to help it stand out from the crowd. Outside, you’ll find large wheels, specialized trim pieces, and black and bronze coloring, while the interior comes decked out in nappa leather, carbon fiber, and unique badging, all set in the traditional top-shelf G-Wagen luxury.

Merc says over a third of its G-Class vehicle sales are the AMG variants, so it makes total sense to release this spruced-up special edition before we wave goodbye. With only 65 units slated for production, Mercedes is banking on exclusivity to move this thing, because they certainly won’t come cheap. Pricing starts at a whopping 310,233 Euros, which is around $368,000 at current exchange rates (10/19/2017). And in case you’re keeping track, that’s about $150,000 more than the standard AMG G 65. Seriously. So what the hell makes it worth all that extra outlay? Read on for the details.

Continue reading to learn more about the Mercedes-AMG G 65 Final Edition.

What Makes The Mercedes-AMG G 65 Final Edition Special?

What’s It Got Under The Hood?


2013 Mercedes G65 AMG - image 450391

Note: standard Mercedes-AMG G 65 pictured here.

“The V-12 gets a double-dose of turbocharging to produce 630 horsepower, plus 738 pound-feet of torque between 2,300 and 4,300 rpm”

Take a peek behind that three-pointed star on the grille, and you’ll find the same AMG-tuned 6.0-liter V-12 engine that you’d get in the standard model. Once again, the V-12 gets a double-dose of turbocharging to produce 630 horsepower, plus 1,000 Nm (738 pound-feet) of torque between 2,300 and 4,300 rpm. Lighting the fire is a multi-spark ignition system, with 12 individual twin-sparking ignition units. Adding some underhood glitz is a carbon fiber and aluminum engine cover.

That’s a lot of go, and although the AMG G 65 weighs in at a ground-pounding 3 tons (6,050 pounds), it’s got the right stuff to hit 62 mph in 5.3 seconds. Top speed is electronically limited at 230 km/h (143 mph).

“Top speed is electronically limited at 230 km/h (143 mph).”

Routing the muscle is an AMG-tuned seven-speed automatic transmission, which feeds a standard AWD system. The Final Edition also gets the same off-roading chops as the standard models, rocking high-travel suspension that enables slope climbing up to 80 percent, the ability to wade through water 60 cm (24 inches) deep, stability while driving at 28 degrees, a 27-degree angle of approach and departure, and a 22-degree breakover angle.

Sounds Pretty Standard, So Why Is It So Expensive?


2017 Mercedes-AMG G 65 Final Edition - image 739732
“It comes equipped with new 21-inch wheels, complete with a five twin-spoke design, alloy construction, and bronzed color finish”

For starters, it comes equipped with new 21-inch wheels, complete with a five twin-spoke design, alloy construction, and bronzed color finish. Under the plus-sized rollers, you’ll find calipers finished in silver, while AMG Sport trim strips were added to the flanks. Additional matte bronze detailing was added to the skid plates, bumper trim, and side view mirrors housings. The radiator grille gets a black mesh insert and matte bronze surround, while high-gloss black was added to the protective strips. In the rear, the spare wheel cover is covered in glossy obsidian black paint, while matte black was added to the running boards and exhaust tips.

What About The Interior?


2017 Mercedes-AMG G 65 Final Edition - image 739560
“The Final Edition adds stuff inside as well, tossing in the design Exclusive Package and adding nappa leather to the seats, plus carbon fiber to the seat side bolsters”

The Final Edition adds stuff inside as well, tossing in the design Exclusive Package and adding nappa leather to the seats, plus carbon fiber to the seat side bolsters. Light brown stitching is prevalent everywhere. Additional carbon fiber was added for the trim, while further bronze stitching adds a little more color. The grab handles get the Edition lettering milled right into them, while the floor mats get light brown leather edging. There’s also a flat-bottom AMG Performance steering wheel, which comes covered in black nappa leather, as well as the Seat Comfort package with “climatised” seats.

Conclusion


2017 Mercedes-AMG G 65 Final Edition - image 739561

Granted, only European pricing has been announced at this point, but even then, the price tag on this thing is rather ridiculous. When you break it down, you’re basically paying an extra six-figures for some wheels, black and bronze trim, and the bragging rights to say you own one of 65 limited edition G-Wagens. But to be frank, that’s more than enough for Merc’s customers in this segment. Expect it to sell out fast.

References

Mercedes G-Class


2013 Mercedes G65 AMG - image 450390

Read our full review on the 2016 Mercedes-AMG G 65.


2018 Mercedes-Benz G-Class - image 683652

Read our full speculative review for the 2018 Mercedes-Benz G-Class.


2018 Mercedes-AMG G63
- image 697064

Read our full speculative review for the 2018 Mercedes-AMG G63.

PostHeaderIcon BMW 7 Series Individual Black Ice Edition

BMW has released another special edition model, but again, it’s not headed to the U.S. Such a reality has become the norm for us even though it doesn’t get any easier to come to grips with. This time, the German automaker is rolling out a special edition 7 Series exclusively for the Russian market. The model goes by the name BMW 7 Series Individual Black Ice Edition, and as its name suggests, it’s dressed up in all layers and manners of black.

From a distance, the special edition 7 Series looks exactly like the kind of car that a Russian oligarch would own. The all-black look gives it business-like swag and the fact that it’s based on a 7 Series is another indication that Bimmer Russia is keen on rolling this out for the upper-echelon of Russia’s social class. In keeping with its identity, the 7er Black Ice carries plenty of exclusive features, not the least of which is the paint finish that was used in it. Apart from that, the luxury sedan also boasts of an aerodynamic kit from BMW M Sport, interior upgrades courtesy of BMW Individual, a new set of wheels, and enough of the automaker’s newest and most advanced tech features. And for vanity’s sake, there are also badges throughout the car denoting its “Black Ice” name. I suppose that at some point in the future, we’re going to get our turn and have more of these special edition models head to our soil. But now’s not our time yet, so the only thing we can do at this point is admire what other market is getting from Bimmer. And, in this case, it looks like the Russian market got itself a good one from the German automaker.

Continue after the jump to read more about the BMW 7 Series Individual Black Ice Edition.

What makes the BMW 7 Series Individual Ice Edition special


2017 BMW 7 Series Individual Black Ice Edition - image 739622
“There are a number of different things about this particular 7 Series special edition that make it “special””

There are a number of different things about this particular 7 Series special edition that make it “special” in my eyes. The first and most important of it is its color because it’s a one-off. That means that no other BMW model will get this specific shade. BMW calls it “Frosty Black Metallic,” which it created by covering the base layer of metallic paint with a special matte varnish. This process, or “paint technology,” as BMW puts it, creates transformative properties in the paint giving it a unique shine under specific lighting conditions. BMW didn’t say what those conditions are but I suppose we can take their word for it. They’ve been doing this a lot over the years and they at least get the benefit of the doubt in this regard.

“The 7 Series SE also comes with a new set of 20-inch forged, V-spoke 649 wheels from BMW Individual.”

Beyond the meticulous process of creating a one-off paint scheme for the 7 Series, BMW also gave the luxury sedan its patented M Sport package. Notice the double grille in the front? That’s part of the M
Sport package. Same thing with the gloss black door handles and the gloss black boot lid. I suppose if BMW’s going to go to great lengths to create a one-off paint finish for a car, might as well use complementary pieces to make the whole thing shine as it did here. The 7 Series SE also comes with a new set of 20-inch forged, V-spoke 649 wheels from BMW Individual. This wheel setup is unique in it of itself because this particular set of wheels can only be paired with the M Sport body kit.

Now on to the tech side. Seeing as the 7 Series Individual Black Ice Edition is exclusive to the Russian market, BMW need not worry about US regulations pertaining to the use of laser headlamps. So the luxury sedan gets them. Also standard on the special edition sedan, among other things, are parking assist with a remote control module, a 360-degree vision system, and an Executive Drive Pro package with roadway scanning.


2017 BMW 7 Series Individual Black Ice Edition - image 739624
“The cabin itself is dressed up in Nappa Black leather trim to go with a BMW Individual trim that’s finished in Black Piano lacquer”

Move to the interior, and you’ll be greeted by a continuation of the stealthy theme that Bimmer seems to have adopted for this SE. The cabin itself is dressed up in Nappa Black leather trim to go with a BMW Individual trim that’s finished in Black Piano lacquer. The upholstery also gets Anthracite Alcantara, and the whole black-on-black theme continues with the BMW badge sporting this color scheme. A “Black Ice” badging on the passenger dashboard is the cherry on top of this proverbial sundae.

BMW made no mention of how much the 7 Series Individual Black Ice Edition is going to cost. That said, we can at least point to the pricing of the standard 7 Series for reference, which in this case adds up to $84,000 for the base 740i model and $97,000 for the 750i. That means that with all the work BMW put into turning the 7 Series Individual Black Ice Edition into a true SE, it should cost somewhere in the $110,000 range, maybe even more. Not that it matters since we’re not getting it here in the US, but if any of our friends in Russia are interested in getting one, they better get their checkbooks ready. This special edition Bimmer isn’t going to come cheap.

References

BMW 7 Series


2016 BMW 7 Series - image 633492

Read our full review on the 2017 BMW 7 Series.


2017 BMW M2 CSL - image 645061

Read more BMW news.

PostHeaderIcon BMW 7 Series Individual Black Ice Edition

BMW has released another special edition model, but again, it’s not headed to the U.S. Such a reality has become the norm for us even though it doesn’t get any easier to come to grips with. This time, the German automaker is rolling out a special edition 7 Series exclusively for the Russian market. The model goes by the name BMW 7 Series Individual Black Ice Edition, and as its name suggests, it’s dressed up in all layers and manners of black.

From a distance, the special edition 7 Series looks exactly like the kind of car that a Russian oligarch would own. The all-black look gives it business-like swag and the fact that it’s based on a 7 Series is another indication that Bimmer Russia is keen on rolling this out for the upper-echelon of Russia’s social class. In keeping with its identity, the 7er Black Ice carries plenty of exclusive features, not the least of which is the paint finish that was used in it. Apart from that, the luxury sedan also boasts of an aerodynamic kit from BMW M Sport, interior upgrades courtesy of BMW Individual, a new set of wheels, and enough of the automaker’s newest and most advanced tech features. And for vanity’s sake, there are also badges throughout the car denoting its “Black Ice” name. I suppose that at some point in the future, we’re going to get our turn and have more of these special edition models head to our soil. But now’s not our time yet, so the only thing we can do at this point is admire what other market is getting from Bimmer. And, in this case, it looks like the Russian market got itself a good one from the German automaker.

Continue after the jump to read more about the BMW 7 Series Individual Black Ice Edition.

What makes the BMW 7 Series Individual Ice Edition special


2017 BMW 7 Series Individual Black Ice Edition - image 739622
“There are a number of different things about this particular 7 Series special edition that make it “special””

There are a number of different things about this particular 7 Series special edition that make it “special” in my eyes. The first and most important of it is its color because it’s a one-off. That means that no other BMW model will get this specific shade. BMW calls it “Frosty Black Metallic,” which it created by covering the base layer of metallic paint with a special matte varnish. This process, or “paint technology,” as BMW puts it, creates transformative properties in the paint giving it a unique shine under specific lighting conditions. BMW didn’t say what those conditions are but I suppose we can take their word for it. They’ve been doing this a lot over the years and they at least get the benefit of the doubt in this regard.

“The 7 Series SE also comes with a new set of 20-inch forged, V-spoke 649 wheels from BMW Individual.”

Beyond the meticulous process of creating a one-off paint scheme for the 7 Series, BMW also gave the luxury sedan its patented M Sport package. Notice the double grille in the front? That’s part of the M
Sport package. Same thing with the gloss black door handles and the gloss black boot lid. I suppose if BMW’s going to go to great lengths to create a one-off paint finish for a car, might as well use complementary pieces to make the whole thing shine as it did here. The 7 Series SE also comes with a new set of 20-inch forged, V-spoke 649 wheels from BMW Individual. This wheel setup is unique in it of itself because this particular set of wheels can only be paired with the M Sport body kit.

Now on to the tech side. Seeing as the 7 Series Individual Black Ice Edition is exclusive to the Russian market, BMW need not worry about US regulations pertaining to the use of laser headlamps. So the luxury sedan gets them. Also standard on the special edition sedan, among other things, are parking assist with a remote control module, a 360-degree vision system, and an Executive Drive Pro package with roadway scanning.


2017 BMW 7 Series Individual Black Ice Edition - image 739624
“The cabin itself is dressed up in Nappa Black leather trim to go with a BMW Individual trim that’s finished in Black Piano lacquer”

Move to the interior, and you’ll be greeted by a continuation of the stealthy theme that Bimmer seems to have adopted for this SE. The cabin itself is dressed up in Nappa Black leather trim to go with a BMW Individual trim that’s finished in Black Piano lacquer. The upholstery also gets Anthracite Alcantara, and the whole black-on-black theme continues with the BMW badge sporting this color scheme. A “Black Ice” badging on the passenger dashboard is the cherry on top of this proverbial sundae.

BMW made no mention of how much the 7 Series Individual Black Ice Edition is going to cost. That said, we can at least point to the pricing of the standard 7 Series for reference, which in this case adds up to $84,000 for the base 740i model and $97,000 for the 750i. That means that with all the work BMW put into turning the 7 Series Individual Black Ice Edition into a true SE, it should cost somewhere in the $110,000 range, maybe even more. Not that it matters since we’re not getting it here in the US, but if any of our friends in Russia are interested in getting one, they better get their checkbooks ready. This special edition Bimmer isn’t going to come cheap.

References

BMW 7 Series


2016 BMW 7 Series - image 633492

Read our full review on the 2017 BMW 7 Series.


2017 BMW M2 CSL - image 645061

Read more BMW news.

PostHeaderIcon Rolls-Royce Dawn Neiman Marcus Special Editions

Neiman Marcus’ annual Christmas Book has just been unveiled, and as expected, a car is included in it. This year’s different though because instead of offering just one ride in the catalog, Neiman Marcus is rolling out two special edition Rolls-Royce Dawns, each one dressed in a unique summer look that promotes a his-and-hers vibe.

In keeping with the summertime theme, each of the two Rolls-Royce Dawn models also get names attached to them. One is called the Dawn Lago di Como, a nod to Italy’s famous Lake Como, a favorite tourist destination in the hot months. The other is called Dawn Saint-Tropez, named after the French coastal town that’s famous for being the playground of the rich and famous. In those terms, these two Dawn models appear to have been named appropriately considering their own pedigree as Rolls-Royce models. As expected, the Dawn Lago di Como and the Dawn Saint-Tropez will be extremely limited with only 20 total models set to be made available, presumably just 10 for each of the two SE Dawns. That said, before you start placing your orders, remember that items from Neiman Marcus’ Christmas Book don’t come cheap. That’s certainly the case for these two Dawns as one of them – the Lago di Como – costs $439,625 whereas the other – the Saint-Tropez – is priced a little higher at $445,750. Either way, you’re bank accounts will have their work cut out for them should you decide to get either one of these two beauties.

Continue after the jump to read more about the Rolls-Royce Dawn Neiman Marcus Special Editions.

What makes the Rolls-Royce Dawn Neiman Marcus Special Editions special


2018 Rolls-Royce Dawn Neiman Marcus Special Editions - image 739552
“It’s defining feature is its blue paint finish, which is supposed to evoke the beautiful blue waters of Lake Como.”

I don’t know if it was a case of timing, coincidence, or both, but when I wrote about the 2016 Ford Mustang Convertible Neiman Marcus Edition yesterday – that one that was headed to the auction block – I had no inkling that the luxury department store was set to unveil this year’s Christmas Book. In any case, let’s chalk down that up to a happy coincidence.

Now about these two special edition Dawns. Let’s take a look at the Dawn Lago di Como first. It’s defining feature is its blue paint finish, which is supposed to evoke the beautiful blue waters of Lake Como. The exterior look is completed by a silver hood and a silver fabric top. Inside, the treatment involves the use of black and grey leather and a brushed aluminum dashboard. There’s no mention of any badges or plaques denoting the model as an exclusive to Neiman Marcus, but you can rest assured that if history is an indication, there’s going to be some of them in there in some form or fashion.

The other special edition Dawn is the Saint-Tropez Edition. It’s flashier in terms of appearance, thanks in part to the use of orange as the main body color of the luxury drop-top. It also gets a silver hood and silver fabric top just like the Lago di Como Edition. But the best part of the Dawn Saint-Tropez Edition is its interior, particularly how it stands out compared to its Lago di Como counterpart. Officially, Rolls-Royce calls it a Seashell and Dark Spice upholstery, though you can be forgiven for thinking of the colors simply as white, orange, and dark reddish-brown. It also gets open-pore wood on the panels and lambswool floor mats, two features that are distinctly absent from the Dawn Lago di Como.

Unlike the 2016 Mustang Convertible that was featured in the 2015 Christmas Book, neither of the two special edition Dawns received any engine upgrades. It would’ve been unlikely anyway owing to the car’s status, but it’s still something worth mentioning. In any case, both special edition models are powered by a massive 6.6-liter V-12 engine that produces 563 horsepower and 575 pound-feet of torque. That’s enough power to make a statement.


2018 Rolls-Royce Dawn Neiman Marcus Special Editions - image 739556

2018 Rolls-Royce Dawn Neiman Marcus Special Editions - image 739558
“Only 20 units are going to be made of them – 10 for each version – and there’s a precedent for these SEs to sell out quickly”

So now that the two Rolls-Royce Dawn Neiman Marcus Special Edition models have been revealed, the question is which of the two are you most likely to get? Remember, only 20 units are going to be made of them – 10 for each version – and there’s a precedent for these SEs to sell out quickly. If you’re ready to make the financial commitment, remember that the Dawn Lago di Como Edition carries a price tag of $439,625. It’s a tough price to reach, but hilariously enough, it’s also the “cheaper” of the two SE Dawns as the Dawn Saint-Tropez Edition is slightly more expensive at $445,750.

References

Rolls Royce Dawn


2016 Rolls-Royce Dawn - image 645027

Read our full review on the 2017 Rolls Royce Dawn.


2017 Rolls Royce Dawn in Fuxia - image 727499

Read more Rolls Royce news.

PostHeaderIcon Rolls-Royce Dawn Neiman Marcus Special Editions

Neiman Marcus’ annual Christmas Book has just been unveiled, and as expected, a car is included in it. This year’s different though because instead of offering just one ride in the catalog, Neiman Marcus is rolling out two special edition Rolls-Royce Dawns, each one dressed in a unique summer look that promotes a his-and-hers vibe.

In keeping with the summertime theme, each of the two Rolls-Royce Dawn models also get names attached to them. One is called the Dawn Lago di Como, a nod to Italy’s famous Lake Como, a favorite tourist destination in the hot months. The other is called Dawn Saint-Tropez, named after the French coastal town that’s famous for being the playground of the rich and famous. In those terms, these two Dawn models appear to have been named appropriately considering their own pedigree as Rolls-Royce models. As expected, the Dawn Lago di Como and the Dawn Saint-Tropez will be extremely limited with only 20 total models set to be made available, presumably just 10 for each of the two SE Dawns. That said, before you start placing your orders, remember that items from Neiman Marcus’ Christmas Book don’t come cheap. That’s certainly the case for these two Dawns as one of them – the Lago di Como – costs $439,625 whereas the other – the Saint-Tropez – is priced a little higher at $445,750. Either way, you’re bank accounts will have their work cut out for them should you decide to get either one of these two beauties.

Continue after the jump to read more about the Rolls-Royce Dawn Neiman Marcus Special Editions.

What makes the Rolls-Royce Dawn Neiman Marcus Special Editions special


2018 Rolls-Royce Dawn Neiman Marcus Special Editions - image 739552
“It’s defining feature is its blue paint finish, which is supposed to evoke the beautiful blue waters of Lake Como.”

I don’t know if it was a case of timing, coincidence, or both, but when I wrote about the 2016 Ford Mustang Convertible Neiman Marcus Edition yesterday – that one that was headed to the auction block – I had no inkling that the luxury department store was set to unveil this year’s Christmas Book. In any case, let’s chalk down that up to a happy coincidence.

Now about these two special edition Dawns. Let’s take a look at the Dawn Lago di Como first. It’s defining feature is its blue paint finish, which is supposed to evoke the beautiful blue waters of Lake Como. The exterior look is completed by a silver hood and a silver fabric top. Inside, the treatment involves the use of black and grey leather and a brushed aluminum dashboard. There’s no mention of any badges or plaques denoting the model as an exclusive to Neiman Marcus, but you can rest assured that if history is an indication, there’s going to be some of them in there in some form or fashion.

The other special edition Dawn is the Saint-Tropez Edition. It’s flashier in terms of appearance, thanks in part to the use of orange as the main body color of the luxury drop-top. It also gets a silver hood and silver fabric top just like the Lago di Como Edition. But the best part of the Dawn Saint-Tropez Edition is its interior, particularly how it stands out compared to its Lago di Como counterpart. Officially, Rolls-Royce calls it a Seashell and Dark Spice upholstery, though you can be forgiven for thinking of the colors simply as white, orange, and dark reddish-brown. It also gets open-pore wood on the panels and lambswool floor mats, two features that are distinctly absent from the Dawn Lago di Como.

Unlike the 2016 Mustang Convertible that was featured in the 2015 Christmas Book, neither of the two special edition Dawns received any engine upgrades. It would’ve been unlikely anyway owing to the car’s status, but it’s still something worth mentioning. In any case, both special edition models are powered by a massive 6.6-liter V-12 engine that produces 563 horsepower and 575 pound-feet of torque. That’s enough power to make a statement.


2018 Rolls-Royce Dawn Neiman Marcus Special Editions - image 739556

2018 Rolls-Royce Dawn Neiman Marcus Special Editions - image 739558
“Only 20 units are going to be made of them – 10 for each version – and there’s a precedent for these SEs to sell out quickly”

So now that the two Rolls-Royce Dawn Neiman Marcus Special Edition models have been revealed, the question is which of the two are you most likely to get? Remember, only 20 units are going to be made of them – 10 for each version – and there’s a precedent for these SEs to sell out quickly. If you’re ready to make the financial commitment, remember that the Dawn Lago di Como Edition carries a price tag of $439,625. It’s a tough price to reach, but hilariously enough, it’s also the “cheaper” of the two SE Dawns as the Dawn Saint-Tropez Edition is slightly more expensive at $445,750.

References

Rolls Royce Dawn


2016 Rolls-Royce Dawn - image 645027

Read our full review on the 2017 Rolls Royce Dawn.


2017 Rolls Royce Dawn in Fuxia - image 727499

Read more Rolls Royce news.

PostHeaderIcon Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Midnight Edition and Dusk Edition

Chevrolet is now offering two new special editions for the high-performance off-road Colorado ZR2 mid-size pickup. The Midnight Edition brings an all-black theme with tons of dark accents and a ZR2-branded sports bar with LED off-road lights. The Dusk Edition brings all the same black accents and the sports bar but allows customers to choose any of the eight other paint colors available on the standard Colorado ZR2. Both the Midnight and Dusk Editions come with new five-spoke, 17-inch alloy wheels painted in black.

The Colorado ZR2 is one of the hottest trucks on the market right now, and Chevy is hoping the added special editions will pour gasoline on the ZR2 fire. Obviously, special edition models tend to sell roughly twice as quickly as standard pickups, so it’s no doubt why Chevys bean counters are happy to offer the blacked-out packages.

According to Jim Campbell, Chevy’s U.S. VP of truck strategy, performance vehicles, and motorsports, “The Colorado ZR2 Midnight and Dusk Edition models offer customers even more personalization choices from the only company with three distinct trucks: midsize, full-size and full-size heavy-duty. Chevrolet offers more choices because the truck market is too diverse for a ‘one size fits most’ strategy.” Basically, it boils down to customers feeling exclusive when they buy and drive a special edition truck.

So what makes these special editions so… special? Keep reading for the details.

Continue reading for more on the Colorado ZR2 special editions.

2018 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Midnight Edition


2018 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Midnight Edition and Dusk Edition - image 739209
“The Colorado ZR2 Midnight Edition is exactly what we’ve come to expect from something called the “midnight edition.””

The Colorado ZR2 Midnight Edition is exactly what we’ve come to expect from something called the “midnight edition.” Both Chevy and Nissan have midnight editions, and several other automakers have a play on the blacked-out theme. For the 2018 ZR2, it means black paint, black bowtie badges, those black 17-inch wheels (including the spare), and the bed-mounted sports bar with the ZR2-branded sail panels and LED off-road lights. Beyond that, honestly, there’s not much to speak of. Chevy makes no mention of interior changes.

2018 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Dusk Edition


2018 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Midnight Edition and Dusk Edition - image 739207
“What separates the Dusk from the Midnight is the availability of the standard Colorado ZR2’s eight other body color options other than black.”

Do you like the Midnight Edition but think black paint is hard to keep clean? You’re in luck because the Dusk Edition is dark, but not as dark as midnight. See what Chevy did there? (Hardy har har… ) What separates the Dusk from the Midnight is the availability of the standard Colorado ZR2’s eight other body color options other than black.
These include Deepwood Green, Graphite, Red Hot, Satin Steel, Silver Ice, Summit White, Kinetic Blue, and Cajun Red. Those wanting Kinetic Blue or Cajun Red will have to shell out $395 or $495, respectively. The other colors are no-cost options.

Besides the body color options, the Dusk Edition comes with the same equipment as the Midnight Edition. This includes the black bowtie badges, the black wheels, and the sports bar with the ZR2 logo and LED off-road lights.

More on the Special Editions


2018 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Midnight Edition and Dusk Edition - image 739206
“Chevy is using the Midnight and Dusk Editions to help celebrate its 100th-anniversary of building trucks”

Chevy is using the Midnight and Dusk Editions to help celebrate its 100th-anniversary of building trucks. You’ll probably remember reading about the 2018 Chevy Silverado and Colorado Centennial Edition. If not, check those out here. The special editions also give Chevy more things to showcase at this year’s SEMA show. The Colorado ZR2 special edition with be on display at the Los Vegas Convention Center from October 31 through November 3, 2017, along with roughly 20 other Chevy entries.

Chevrolet didn’t announce pricing or availability of the 2018 Colorado ZR2 special editions, but we expect them to arrive in showrooms sometime in December or early in 2018. Pricing will likely be steep, ranging between $1,200 and $2,000. And aside from what comes with these special edition packages, all other options will be available on the ZR2, including both engine choices.

More on the Chevrolet Colorado ZR2


Chevy Colorado ZR2 Takes L.A. By Storm with Supercar Suspension - image 695642

The Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 is a no-holds-barred attempt at a high-performance off-road pickup. While Ford has seen fantastic success with the full-size F-150 Raptor, Chevy is taking a different route by using the Colorado in the mid-size category. The smaller truck is arguably better since its smaller dimensions make it easier to drive on tight trails.

What separates the ZR2 from a run-of-the-mill Colorado Z71 is its wider stance, special shock absorbers, locking differentials, high-clearance bumpers, wide fenders, and grippy Goodyear Wrangler Duratrac tires on ZR2-specific wheels.

Let’s break things down.

The ZR2 is 3.5-inches wider than a standard Colorado, giving it a more planted foundation. The suspension is also two inches higher than stock, giving it more ground clearance and wheel travel. The underbody is protected from damage via an upgraded aluminum skid plate under the radiator and engine oil pan. The skid plate also adds to the macho appearance of the truck. There is also a skid plate protecting the transfer case, too.


Chevy Colorado ZR2 Takes L.A. By Storm with Supercar Suspension - image 695945
“With the two-speed 4WD transfer case locked into 4WD High or Low range, the ZR2 sends equal power to all four wheel no matter what”

The Colorado ZR2 features front and rear locking differentials. These electronically actuate and keep both left and right tires on an axle turning at the same speed, regardless of wheel slip. With the two-speed 4WD transfer case locked into 4WD High or Low range, the ZR2 sends equal power to all four wheel no matter what – an extremely handy feature when traversing loose terrain or slick rocks. The rear axle is also unique to the ZR2 and runs a stout 3.42:1 gear ratio.

The ZR2 also boats an off-road drive mode than reworks programming for the traction controls, ABS, stability control, transmission shift patterns, and throttle response.

However, the biggest performance upgrade on the ZR2 is its DSSV Spool Valve dampers from Multimatic. This is the first off-road application of spool valve shocks, which have a rich yet relatively short history in F1 race cars, supercars, and high-end track-day brawlers. Chevy has experience with spool valve shocks, though, as the fifth-generation Chevy Camaro Z/28 used them. In the ZR2’s application, the spool valves are designed to give highly controlled rates of drop and compression throughout its travel, all while staying cool no matter the ambient temperature, how rugged the terrain, or how fast the truck is traveling. In short, they are the ZR2’s magic bullet. They also give the truck instant street cred among sports car and racing enthusiasts.


Chevy Colorado ZR2 Takes L.A. By Storm with Supercar Suspension - image 695643
“The Colorado ZR2 can be had with either the 3.6-liter gasoline V-6 or the 2.8-liter Duramax four-cylinder turbodiesel”

And as mentioned the Colorado ZR2 can be had with either the 3.6-liter gasoline V-6 or the 2.8-liter Duramax four-cylinder turbodiesel. The V-6 offers 308 horsepower at 6,800 rpm and 275 pound-feet of torque at 4,000 rpm. It comes mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission. The turbodiesel is the extra-cost option and comes with 181 horsepower at 3,400 rpm, and more importantly, 369 pound-feet of torque at only 2,000 rpm. A six-speed automatic comes with the baby D-Max. For those torn between which engine is right, the V-6 is best for high-speed running where big revs are needed. The turbodiesel is best for those situations where low-end torque is king – situations like rock crawling, towing, vehicle recovery, and of course, getting decent fuel economy.

As for pricing of the current 2017 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 without any special edition package adding cost, the MSRP starts at $41,550 for the Extended Cab and V-6 configuration. Those needing four real doors will want the $43,175 Crew Cab. Adding the turbodiesel to the Extended Cab pushes the price to $44,655 and $46,280 for the Crew Cab. Those aren’t cheap prices, but they do undercut the Ford F-150 Raptor’s base sticker price of $49,785 for the SuperCab model. Option for the bigger SuperCrew costs even more at $52,770. Check every option box, and the Raptor will quickly sail towards $70,000. That makes the Colorado ZR2 look like a bargain, doesn’t it?

References

Chevrolet Colorado


Chevy Colorado ZR2 Takes L.A. By Storm with Supercar Suspension - image 695944

Read our full review on the 2017 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2.


2015 Chevrolet Colorado - image 532914

Read our full review on the 2017 Chevrolet Colorado.

PostHeaderIcon Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Midnight Edition and Dusk Edition

Chevrolet is now offering two new special editions for the high-performance off-road Colorado ZR2 mid-size pickup. The Midnight Edition brings an all-black theme with tons of dark accents and a ZR2-branded sports bar with LED off-road lights. The Dusk Edition brings all the same black accents and the sports bar but allows customers to choose any of the eight other paint colors available on the standard Colorado ZR2. Both the Midnight and Dusk Editions come with new five-spoke, 17-inch alloy wheels painted in black.

The Colorado ZR2 is one of the hottest trucks on the market right now, and Chevy is hoping the added special editions will pour gasoline on the ZR2 fire. Obviously, special edition models tend to sell roughly twice as quickly as standard pickups, so it’s no doubt why Chevys bean counters are happy to offer the blacked-out packages.

According to Jim Campbell, Chevy’s U.S. VP of truck strategy, performance vehicles, and motorsports, “The Colorado ZR2 Midnight and Dusk Edition models offer customers even more personalization choices from the only company with three distinct trucks: midsize, full-size and full-size heavy-duty. Chevrolet offers more choices because the truck market is too diverse for a ‘one size fits most’ strategy.” Basically, it boils down to customers feeling exclusive when they buy and drive a special edition truck.

So what makes these special editions so… special? Keep reading for the details.

Continue reading for more on the Colorado ZR2 special editions.

2018 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Midnight Edition


2018 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Midnight Edition and Dusk Edition - image 739209
“The Colorado ZR2 Midnight Edition is exactly what we’ve come to expect from something called the “midnight edition.””

The Colorado ZR2 Midnight Edition is exactly what we’ve come to expect from something called the “midnight edition.” Both Chevy and Nissan have midnight editions, and several other automakers have a play on the blacked-out theme. For the 2018 ZR2, it means black paint, black bowtie badges, those black 17-inch wheels (including the spare), and the bed-mounted sports bar with the ZR2-branded sail panels and LED off-road lights. Beyond that, honestly, there’s not much to speak of. Chevy makes no mention of interior changes.

2018 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Dusk Edition


2018 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Midnight Edition and Dusk Edition - image 739207
“What separates the Dusk from the Midnight is the availability of the standard Colorado ZR2’s eight other body color options other than black.”

Do you like the Midnight Edition but think black paint is hard to keep clean? You’re in luck because the Dusk Edition is dark, but not as dark as midnight. See what Chevy did there? (Hardy har har… ) What separates the Dusk from the Midnight is the availability of the standard Colorado ZR2’s eight other body color options other than black.
These include Deepwood Green, Graphite, Red Hot, Satin Steel, Silver Ice, Summit White, Kinetic Blue, and Cajun Red. Those wanting Kinetic Blue or Cajun Red will have to shell out $395 or $495, respectively. The other colors are no-cost options.

Besides the body color options, the Dusk Edition comes with the same equipment as the Midnight Edition. This includes the black bowtie badges, the black wheels, and the sports bar with the ZR2 logo and LED off-road lights.

More on the Special Editions


2018 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Midnight Edition and Dusk Edition - image 739206
“Chevy is using the Midnight and Dusk Editions to help celebrate its 100th-anniversary of building trucks”

Chevy is using the Midnight and Dusk Editions to help celebrate its 100th-anniversary of building trucks. You’ll probably remember reading about the 2018 Chevy Silverado and Colorado Centennial Edition. If not, check those out here. The special editions also give Chevy more things to showcase at this year’s SEMA show. The Colorado ZR2 special edition with be on display at the Los Vegas Convention Center from October 31 through November 3, 2017, along with roughly 20 other Chevy entries.

Chevrolet didn’t announce pricing or availability of the 2018 Colorado ZR2 special editions, but we expect them to arrive in showrooms sometime in December or early in 2018. Pricing will likely be steep, ranging between $1,200 and $2,000. And aside from what comes with these special edition packages, all other options will be available on the ZR2, including both engine choices.

More on the Chevrolet Colorado ZR2


Chevy Colorado ZR2 Takes L.A. By Storm with Supercar Suspension - image 695642

The Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 is a no-holds-barred attempt at a high-performance off-road pickup. While Ford has seen fantastic success with the full-size F-150 Raptor, Chevy is taking a different route by using the Colorado in the mid-size category. The smaller truck is arguably better since its smaller dimensions make it easier to drive on tight trails.

What separates the ZR2 from a run-of-the-mill Colorado Z71 is its wider stance, special shock absorbers, locking differentials, high-clearance bumpers, wide fenders, and grippy Goodyear Wrangler Duratrac tires on ZR2-specific wheels.

Let’s break things down.

The ZR2 is 3.5-inches wider than a standard Colorado, giving it a more planted foundation. The suspension is also two inches higher than stock, giving it more ground clearance and wheel travel. The underbody is protected from damage via an upgraded aluminum skid plate under the radiator and engine oil pan. The skid plate also adds to the macho appearance of the truck. There is also a skid plate protecting the transfer case, too.


Chevy Colorado ZR2 Takes L.A. By Storm with Supercar Suspension - image 695945
“With the two-speed 4WD transfer case locked into 4WD High or Low range, the ZR2 sends equal power to all four wheel no matter what”

The Colorado ZR2 features front and rear locking differentials. These electronically actuate and keep both left and right tires on an axle turning at the same speed, regardless of wheel slip. With the two-speed 4WD transfer case locked into 4WD High or Low range, the ZR2 sends equal power to all four wheel no matter what – an extremely handy feature when traversing loose terrain or slick rocks. The rear axle is also unique to the ZR2 and runs a stout 3.42:1 gear ratio.

The ZR2 also boats an off-road drive mode than reworks programming for the traction controls, ABS, stability control, transmission shift patterns, and throttle response.

However, the biggest performance upgrade on the ZR2 is its DSSV Spool Valve dampers from Multimatic. This is the first off-road application of spool valve shocks, which have a rich yet relatively short history in F1 race cars, supercars, and high-end track-day brawlers. Chevy has experience with spool valve shocks, though, as the fifth-generation Chevy Camaro Z/28 used them. In the ZR2’s application, the spool valves are designed to give highly controlled rates of drop and compression throughout its travel, all while staying cool no matter the ambient temperature, how rugged the terrain, or how fast the truck is traveling. In short, they are the ZR2’s magic bullet. They also give the truck instant street cred among sports car and racing enthusiasts.


Chevy Colorado ZR2 Takes L.A. By Storm with Supercar Suspension - image 695643
“The Colorado ZR2 can be had with either the 3.6-liter gasoline V-6 or the 2.8-liter Duramax four-cylinder turbodiesel”

And as mentioned the Colorado ZR2 can be had with either the 3.6-liter gasoline V-6 or the 2.8-liter Duramax four-cylinder turbodiesel. The V-6 offers 308 horsepower at 6,800 rpm and 275 pound-feet of torque at 4,000 rpm. It comes mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission. The turbodiesel is the extra-cost option and comes with 181 horsepower at 3,400 rpm, and more importantly, 369 pound-feet of torque at only 2,000 rpm. A six-speed automatic comes with the baby D-Max. For those torn between which engine is right, the V-6 is best for high-speed running where big revs are needed. The turbodiesel is best for those situations where low-end torque is king – situations like rock crawling, towing, vehicle recovery, and of course, getting decent fuel economy.

As for pricing of the current 2017 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 without any special edition package adding cost, the MSRP starts at $41,550 for the Extended Cab and V-6 configuration. Those needing four real doors will want the $43,175 Crew Cab. Adding the turbodiesel to the Extended Cab pushes the price to $44,655 and $46,280 for the Crew Cab. Those aren’t cheap prices, but they do undercut the Ford F-150 Raptor’s base sticker price of $49,785 for the SuperCab model. Option for the bigger SuperCrew costs even more at $52,770. Check every option box, and the Raptor will quickly sail towards $70,000. That makes the Colorado ZR2 look like a bargain, doesn’t it?

References

Chevrolet Colorado


Chevy Colorado ZR2 Takes L.A. By Storm with Supercar Suspension - image 695944

Read our full review on the 2017 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2.


2015 Chevrolet Colorado - image 532914

Read our full review on the 2017 Chevrolet Colorado.

PostHeaderIcon 2017 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Z71: An Overview

My driveway this week holds something sinister – something dark and powerful – the 2017 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Z71 Midnight Edition. This blacked-out pickup is also fitted with the LTZ trim package, which is the highest trim available with the Z71 Off-Road Package. Only the High Country trim outranks the LTZ. Don’t count the LTZ out though; it comes with just about every imaginable feature Chevy has available.

Pickup trucks might be workhorses, but modern examples have become thoroughbreds of luxury and creature comforts. My Silverado includes heated and vented front seats and leather over all five seating positions, memory settings for the driver’s seat, power-adjustable pedals, dual-zone and automatic climate controls, and room enough for four of the largest NFL linebackers and a scrawny waterboy in the middle seat in back. And let’s not forget handy features like four USB ports, three 12-volt chargers, a 110-volt household outlet, a center console designed for hanging file folders, and more cubbyholes and storage spots than most minivans.
Sure, tree huggers can argue against pickups since most people don’t use them for towing or hauling, but dadgummit, the Silverado is insanely practical.

But it’s not all rainbows and butterflies. I do have a bone to pick with Chevy. Keep reading for that.

Continue reading for more information.

The 2017 Chevy Silverado LTZ Z71

“The Z71 package includes skid plates and recovery hooks for extra piece of mind.”

So, what’s my beef? Chevy apparently doesn’t think rear passengers need air vents. That might not be a big deal in Detroit, but in my home state of hot-as-heck Florida, anybody without direct airflow is sweating in the summer heat. Adding insult to injury, the Silverado (and its corporate twin, the GMC Sierra) is the only full-size pickup to not have rear air vents. Yep, the Ford F-150, Ram 1500, Nissan Titan, and even the decade-old Toyota Tundra all keep their rear passengers comfortable.

Rants aside, the rest of the Silverado provides plenty to like. Its cargo bed is extremely easy to use thanks to those handy bumper steps and stake pocket hand-grabs. It has provisions for towing. The Z71 package includes skid plates and recovery hooks for extra piece of mind. Oh, and then there’s the engine.


2017 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Z71: An Overview - image 739275
“It boasts 355 horsepower at 5,600 rpm and 383 pound-feet of torque at 4,100 rpm.”

The Silverado is available with three engine choices: the 4.3-liter V-6, the 5.3-liter V-8, and the mighty 6.2-liter V-8. All belong to the EcoTec3 family, which represents the fifth-generation of small-block Chevy V-8s. (The 4.3-liter V-6 is essentially a 5.3-liter V-8 with two cylinders lobbed off.) The engines include variable valve timing, direct fuel injection, and cylinder deactivation. My tester came with the 5.3-liter, Chevy’s volume engine by far. It boasts 355 horsepower at 5,600 rpm and 383 pound-feet of torque at 4,100 rpm. Somehow, the engine feels stouter than that, especially considering it’s moving 5,300 pounds around.
The sprint to 60 mph only takes 7.2 seconds. Sadly, Chevy limits the Silverado’s top speed to a measly 99 mph. Then again, the truck isn’t designed to bomb the Autobahn.

These days, the V-8 is mated with GM’s eight-speed automatic transmission. It shifts fine enough and is mostly invisible in the general driving experience. The extra gears certainly help with fuel economy, though. The EPA rates my 4WD tester at 20 mpg on the highway. Of course, in-city and mixed driving results in lower numbers – 15 mpg city and 17 mpg combined, to be exact. Still, that’s not bad for such an all-steel pickup with a fully boxed frame and a 9,100-pound tow rating. The truck can also lug 1,760 pounds in its bed.


2017 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Z71: An Overview - image 739276

2017 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Z71: An Overview - image 739279
“My tester has a starting price of $48,890 then adds $5,415 worth of options and another $1,295 in delivery fees.”

If things turn sour during a drive, the Silverado has a five-star safety rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. It scored five stars in all but the rollover risk assessment, where it still earns a respectable four stars.

Of course, a loaded-out Silverado doesn’t come cheap. Sure, Chevy will sell you a base Silverado regular cab with zero options for $28,085, but unless you’re a fleet manager with a bottom line to meet, nobody buys a truck like that. My tester has a starting price of $48,890 then adds $5,415 worth of options and another $1,295 in delivery fees. The grand total comes to $55,600. While that is pricey, it’s in line with what the competition is charging for a comparable truck.

Anyway, this is just a quick look at the 2017 Chevy Silverado LTZ Z71 Midnight Edition that’s in my driveway this week. I’ll have a ton more in the coming days. Leave a comment if you have a question or want to see something specific.

References

Chevrolet Silverado


2016 Chevrolet Silverado - image 712066

Read our full review on the 2017 Chevrolet Silverado.


2015 Chevrolet Silverado Midnight Edition - image 612398

Read our full review on the Chevrolet Silverado Midnight Edition.

PostHeaderIcon You Need a Lot of Money To Even Sniff A One-Off Aston Martin

Like most premium automakers that have deep-pocketed customers at their disposal, Aston Martin knows the value of diversifying its lineup to keep its clients on their toes. As rivals like Ferrari, McLaren, and Rolls-Royce have shown, one way to do that is to offer one-off models that no other person will get to own. Aston Martin has actually done this exercise in the past courtesy of its Prototype Operation division, having created the CC100 Speedster in 2013 to celebrate the marque’s 100th anniversary. Now it looks like the one-off offers are back on the table, provided that customers fork up at least £2 million for each car. By the way, that converts to $2.6 million in today’s exchange rates. Gulp.

Aston Martin CEO, Andy Palmer, made the proclamation in a conversation with Road & Track, raising a lot of eyebrows in the process. There is one other catch though to getting Aston Martin to build a one-off. Palmer said that on top of paying the steep price to even get considered for one, interested customers would also have to wait in line for their turn because Aston is only building two of them per year. And, just in case that condition still suits someone with deep pockets and a longing for one-off creations, the official wait, at this point, is around two years since the next four slots are already accounted for. Still, if patience is a virtue, two years isn’t a long time to wait for a car that literally nobody else in this world is going to own. Just make sure to keep that £2 million locked away somewhere.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

It’s a steep price to pay, but Aston has a good history with one-offs


2014 Aston Martin CC100 - image 506917

I’ll be honest. I actually laughed when I first heard about Andy Palmer’s comments. I don’t know if it was the $2.6 million figure or the fact that it’s Aston Martin, but my initial thought was not a lot of people will be enticed by this. Then I sat back and looked at the CC100 Speedster from 2013 and thought to myself, “dear God, it still looks amazing four years later.”

Now, I’m still a little wary of the price tag, but not so much about Aston Martin’s ability to build one-off models. The automaker has done an incredible job in the past in this regard, and there’s no reason to think that it’s not capable of replicating those feats. Heck, the potential to actually exceed them is there for the taking, as we saw with the Aston Martin Valkyrie, the automaker’s $3.2-million crown jewel hypercar.

“The automaker has done an incredible job in the past in this regard, and there’s no reason to think that it’s not capable of replicating those feats.”

A one-off Aston Martin is going to be the definition of exclusivity, though there is that trade-off that comes with such a high-asking “base” price. See how the cost of the Valkyrie is “only” $600,000 more than what Aston Martin is asking for a one-off? I doubt that any of these exclusive creations will be as powerful and as technologically advanced as the Valkyrie, so it is weird to think how high the company’s asking price is for these models. The reason though is simple, and it’s owed to the fact that as a literal one-off – maybe two-off in some cases – no one else is getting the car. It’s a formula that Ferrari, McLaren, and Lamborghini have done in recent years with their own super exclusive models. None of this guarantees that any of the future one-offs to come out of Aston Martin’s Prototype Operations division will be fastest or most powerful of their kind, but the fact that there will only be one or two of them kind of makes it a moot point, doesn’t it?

Here’s to simply hoping that we get to see these cars in some capacity at some point because Palmer also hinted that these one-off creations aren’t going to be shown in public once they’re built. Kind of makes you wonder how many are already out there in the wild.

References

Aston Martin CC100


2014 Aston Martin CC100 - image 506888

Read our full review on the 2014 Aston Martin CC100.

Aston Martin Valkyrie


2018 Aston Martin AM-RB 001 - image 722966

Read our full review on the 2018 Aston Martin Valkyrie.

PostHeaderIcon You Need a Lot of Money To Even Sniff A One-Off Aston Martin

Like most premium automakers that have deep-pocketed customers at their disposal, Aston Martin knows the value of diversifying its lineup to keep its clients on their toes. As rivals like Ferrari, McLaren, and Rolls-Royce have shown, one way to do that is to offer one-off models that no other person will get to own. Aston Martin has actually done this exercise in the past courtesy of its Prototype Operation division, having created the CC100 Speedster in 2013 to celebrate the marque’s 100th anniversary. Now it looks like the one-off offers are back on the table, provided that customers fork up at least £2 million for each car. By the way, that converts to $2.6 million in today’s exchange rates. Gulp.

Aston Martin CEO, Andy Palmer, made the proclamation in a conversation with Road & Track, raising a lot of eyebrows in the process. There is one other catch though to getting Aston Martin to build a one-off. Palmer said that on top of paying the steep price to even get considered for one, interested customers would also have to wait in line for their turn because Aston is only building two of them per year. And, just in case that condition still suits someone with deep pockets and a longing for one-off creations, the official wait, at this point, is around two years since the next four slots are already accounted for. Still, if patience is a virtue, two years isn’t a long time to wait for a car that literally nobody else in this world is going to own. Just make sure to keep that £2 million locked away somewhere.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

It’s a steep price to pay, but Aston has a good history with one-offs


2014 Aston Martin CC100 - image 506917

I’ll be honest. I actually laughed when I first heard about Andy Palmer’s comments. I don’t know if it was the $2.6 million figure or the fact that it’s Aston Martin, but my initial thought was not a lot of people will be enticed by this. Then I sat back and looked at the CC100 Speedster from 2013 and thought to myself, “dear God, it still looks amazing four years later.”

Now, I’m still a little wary of the price tag, but not so much about Aston Martin’s ability to build one-off models. The automaker has done an incredible job in the past in this regard, and there’s no reason to think that it’s not capable of replicating those feats. Heck, the potential to actually exceed them is there for the taking, as we saw with the Aston Martin Valkyrie, the automaker’s $3.2-million crown jewel hypercar.

“The automaker has done an incredible job in the past in this regard, and there’s no reason to think that it’s not capable of replicating those feats.”

A one-off Aston Martin is going to be the definition of exclusivity, though there is that trade-off that comes with such a high-asking “base” price. See how the cost of the Valkyrie is “only” $600,000 more than what Aston Martin is asking for a one-off? I doubt that any of these exclusive creations will be as powerful and as technologically advanced as the Valkyrie, so it is weird to think how high the company’s asking price is for these models. The reason though is simple, and it’s owed to the fact that as a literal one-off – maybe two-off in some cases – no one else is getting the car. It’s a formula that Ferrari, McLaren, and Lamborghini have done in recent years with their own super exclusive models. None of this guarantees that any of the future one-offs to come out of Aston Martin’s Prototype Operations division will be fastest or most powerful of their kind, but the fact that there will only be one or two of them kind of makes it a moot point, doesn’t it?

Here’s to simply hoping that we get to see these cars in some capacity at some point because Palmer also hinted that these one-off creations aren’t going to be shown in public once they’re built. Kind of makes you wonder how many are already out there in the wild.

References

Aston Martin CC100


2014 Aston Martin CC100 - image 506888

Read our full review on the 2014 Aston Martin CC100.

Aston Martin Valkyrie


2018 Aston Martin AM-RB 001 - image 722966

Read our full review on the 2018 Aston Martin Valkyrie.

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