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Archive for the ‘sports cars’ Category

PostHeaderIcon TVR Griffith

Well, Folks, the day is here. TVR has shocked the world by debuting the new TVR Griffith at the Goodwood Revival. One of the most anticipated cars of the year, the Griffith has a lot to live up to, but luckily the team responsible for this piece of rolling artwork has managed to deliver a car that resides well above our expectations and should send marques like Aston Martin and Jaguar running for the hills. Featuring a look that reminds me of an FD-gen Mazda RX-7 on steroids, the Griffith features a stunning design, a 50:50 weight distribution, a Cosworth-enhanced V-8 that’s good for at least 400 ponies, and a Magnum XL gearbox that can handle as much as 700 pound-feet of torque. It’s beautiful iStream architecture provided by none other than Gordan Murray, paired with that beautiful carbon composite body means we’re talking about a car that isn’t only exceptionally light but exceptionally strong as well and could very well push TVR beyond being the brand it once was as it steps into the ring with the big boys for the first time in nearly two decades.

The car was presented for the very first time in Launched Edition spec, a model that will go for £90,000 or about $119,000 a current exchange rates. It boasts a full leather interior to go with custom wheels, a special paint selection, and a bespoke infotainment system. A good number of these have likely already been spoken for so if you’re hoping to get one of the first models that rolls off the line, you might want to get with TVR quickly as once they are spoken for, that’s it. Production is slated to start sometime in late 2018 with a total of 500 Launch Edition models on the bill. After that, you’ll be stuck with the standard production model, which will likely go for a bit more once in production and ready to hit the streets. So, with that in mind, we should start seeing the Griffith on the street in the next couple of years, so let’s talk more about this stunning masterpiece and see just what it brings to the table.

Continue reading to learn more about the 2018 TVR Griffith.

PostHeaderIcon Mercedes-AMG S63-S65

The S-Class is an old nameplate for Mercedes, dating all the way back to the ‘50s. Back then, Merc called it the Sonderklasse (“Special Class” in its native German), adopting the current “S-Class” badge in the early ‘70s. These days, you can get a variety of S-Class variants, but the quickest of the bunch tout the letters “AMG” on the trunk lid. Tuned by the automaker’s independent performance division, these titans of European motoring offer all the traditional comfort and luxury you’d expect, but add a dollop of furious DTM-themed performance on top, creating one serious slice of automobile as a result. Available in several different body styles, two-door variants include a coupe and a cabriolet, with either the twin-turbo V-8-powered S63 or the twin-turbo V-12-powerd S65 rounding out the powertrain options. Keeping things fresh, Merc just announced updates for the 2018 model year, including tweaked styling and a new V-8 for the S63, once again continuing the tradition established over six decades in the past.

However, this latest refresh brings with it a few questions, the most pressing of which pertains to the S63’s new engine. While the eight gets a displacement downgrade, power is up, challenging the twelve in terms of peak output and straight up trouncing the S65 in terms of acceleration numbers. Which begs the question – why get the S65 when the S63 is arguably the better buy? Read on to find out, plus learn about all the updates for 2018.

Continue to learn more about the Mercedes-AMG S63 and S65.

PostHeaderIcon What Makes A Civic Type R?

The entry of the 2017 Honda Civic Type R into the U.S. market is big news – both for Honda fans and the hot hatch segment. The new Type R will only add fuel to the already large flame burning between the Ford Focus RS, Volkswagen Golf R, and Subaru WRX STI. Needless to say, Honda had to bring its A-game. Turning the 10th-generation Civic into competitive hot hatch wouldn’t be an easy task, but the Type R had to perform as good or better to be taken seriously. Well, thanks to time behind the Type R’s wheel, both on the track and bombing down mountain roads, it’s clear Honda has built a worthy rival for its global counterparts.

It all starts with the bones of Honda’s 10th-generation Civic, which debuted back in 2015. Even the base car was designed with a stronger structure for added rigidity, knowing in two years’ time, the Type R would need the extra strength. The same is true for the Civic hatchback, which is new for 2017. But Honda didn’t stop there. Engineers added even more structural adhesives to bind the bodywork together. A stiffer yet lighter suspension with adaptive dampers, bigger wheels, and stickier tires were added, too. And of course, Honda dumped that 1.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder for something with a bit more power – a 2.0-liter turbo-four with 132 more horsepower and 133 pound-feet more torque. Add to that the aggressive yet functional aerodynamic features and heavily bolstered front bucket seats, and the Type R’s pedigree begins to take shape.

Continue reading for more info on the 2017 Honda Civic Type R.

PostHeaderIcon Nobody on eBay Wanted this 1983 DeLorean Plated in 24k Gold

As a fan of the Back to the Future franchise, I can’t think of any other movie car that I want to own more than the DeLorean. I might even pay good money for one provided that it’s in great working condition. Imagine my surprise then when I chanced upon this beauty while doing my weekly browse through eBay. It’s a 1983 DeLorean that reportedly has just 156 miles in it. It also still has its original tires and has a rich history of its own. Oh, and it’s gold-plated too. Yep. Gold-plated. In some ways, it’s a car that’s too good to be true. Then I noticed how much the owner wants to sell it and, well, yeah, it was too good to be true.

For the record, the owner wants $150,000 for the car. On the surface, it looks to be a fair price for a 24-karat gold-plated car that also has an intriguing amount of history behind it. But I went ahead and did a little research on past DeLoreans that have been sold, that $150,000 price tag suddenly became way too overpriced. I understand the things that make it unique, but in my head, I’m not interested in the 24-karat gold as much as I am in the car itself. And when I started making comparisons, it became a little clearer why nobody actually bid on this particular example of the DeLorean when it was being offered on eBay. I still love the car and love the history that makes it as unique as it is. But do I love it enough to spend $150,000 for it? Not really.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

PostHeaderIcon Seat Leon Cupra R

The 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show is just around the corner and we’re already getting a steady stream of cars that will be in attendance at the event. One car that has our attention is a hot hatchback from an automaker that normally doesn’t get its share of the spotlight. Prepare yourselves as Seat is looking to take Frankfurt by storm with the new Leon Cupra R, the automaker’s most powerful road car in history.

The Leon Cupra R will be joined by the likes of the Ibiza and the Leon Cupra Evo 17 in Frankfurt, but make no mistake, the Cupra R will be the highlight of Seat’s booth, in large part because of its status as a limited edition model and its significance for the company moving forward. Remember, Seat recently filed trademark applications for a Cupra sub-brand, seemingly separating the model from the entire Seat family in hopes of turning it into a performance sub-brand. I can’t
help but wonder then if the Leon Cupra R is more than just a limited edition hot hatch, but a preview of sorts of what we can expect from the Cupra sub-brand in the event that its separation from Seat does happen. For now, though, our attention should be on the Frankfurt-bound Leon Cupra R. With its credentials, the hot hatch has at least earned its place as one of the most exciting cars to hit the upcoming motor show.

Continue after the jump to read more about the Seat Leon Cupra R.

PostHeaderIcon Everyday Life With the 2017 Honda Civic Type R

Honda’s new Civic Type R is a beast on the track. Its 306 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque are more than enough to push this 3,100-pound car toward speeds anyone besides a pro driver should feel comfortable with. My time with at The Ridge Motorsports Park proved that much. Yet, despite the Civic Type R’s race-bred underpinnings, it’s still a Civic hatchback. That means it should be easy to live with, easy to drive slowly, and easy to throw cargo into. So, how’d it do?

Wonderfully. The Civic Type R still offers a pleasant driving experience around down. The light clutch and short-throw shifter are just as enjoyable on the street as on the track. And despite their heavy bolstering, Honda’s front bucket seats are comfortable to get into and easy to get out of. They remain supportive over a long drive, too. The rear seats aren’t touched in the Type R transformation, so they remain spacious for the Civic’s class, yet do lack a center armrest and air vents.

But the value really arrives when it’s time to haul stuff. The Civic boasts a class-leading 25.7 cubic feet of cargo space behind the second- row seat. Fold the 60/40-bench flat, and the Civic Hatch has 46.2 cubic feet of room. The hatchback’s rear opening is wide and tall, allowing for ungainly items like furniture and boxes to easily slide in.

When it comes to storing everyday items like drinks and cell phones, the Civic offers tons of options. The center console is ingeniously designed with a deep container under the armrest. It houses three cup holders – two of which are mounted midway down on a slidable track. The third is way down low, perfect for those Trenta-sized Starbucks drinks. A small storage cubby ahead of the shifter is great for phones and knick-knacks. A cable pass-through lets charging cables run into the lower tier area where Honda locates the USB and 12-volt charge ports. Large door pockets add to the usable (and reachable from behind the wheel) storage space.

On the downside, the Civic Type R rides on 245/30ZR-20 performance wheels and tires. While great on smooth pavement, the 30-series sidewalls offer little cushion from potholes and bumps. This leaves the active dampers with all the work of quelling uneven pavement. Road noise is prevalent, too, imitating mostly from the rear of the interior. Long drives on older pavement might spur on a headache from those sensitive to booming noises. I don’t remember noise being an issue in the 2017 Honda Civic Hatchback EX-L Navi I previously tested, so it’s likely a trade-off for the added lightness and stickier rubber needed to make the Type R perform. In truth, these negligible complaints won’t turn away those eager customers. The Type R isn’t trying to pass as a Cadillac, after all.

Thankfully, the firm ride is about the only trade-off for upgrading to the Type R over the standard Civic Hatchback – at least in terms of everyday livability. The big wing and aggressive aero bits might make it a target for speeding tickets. Just ask one of the journalists at this press event…

PostHeaderIcon The 370Z Continues to Show its Age, Yet Nissan Refuses to Kill it

As excited as it was to hear rumors that Nissan was bringing thesuccessor to the 370Z sports car at the Tokyo Motor Show, it appears that the hype has fizzled out even before it had a chance to be worth anything. The latest word coming from former Nissan Australia Managing Director, Richard Emery, who has come out saying there are unlikely to be any plans for a new Z concept anytime soon.

Speaking with Motoring, Emery said that there are no plans to introduce a replacement study for the 370Z. His comments also came a few days after the automaker unveiled the 2018 370Z in Europe, packing some aesthetic improvements in the exterior and interior. Considering these recent developments on the front of Nissan’s Z sports car family, it does look like all those talks of a successor were premature. It doesn’t mean that they were unwarranted, though. The fact remains that the 370Z is eight years old and (should be) at the end of its lifecycle. It’s certainly possible that Nissan is giving the sports car one final facelift before officially launching the successor. Whether that’s a couple of years from now or not, it’s going to be a while.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

PostHeaderIcon Dodge Viper ACR Almost Breaks Seven Minutes At The Nürburgring: Video

It may not have succeeded in reclaiming the Nürburgring production car lap record from the Lamborghini Huracán Performante, but finally, the Dodge Viper got the proper send-off it so richly deserves, all thanks to the passion and determination of the Viper Owners Association. Relentless in their pursuit of Nürburgring glory, members of the group continued to bang in laps around the Nürburgring in an effort to unseat the Huracán Performante’s record lap time of 6:52.01. It failed to even get close, but that shouldn’t take away from the accomplishment of squeezing in a lap time of 7:01.3 around the 12.9-mile lap.

Yep. Against all odds, drivers Dominik and Mario Farnbacher and all the people involved in the endeavor managed to improve on its previous fastest lap of 7:03.23, coming a second over actually breaking the seven-minute barrier. The achievement is made even more impressive by the fact that these Viper owners had little to no help from Dodge or FCA to bring the Viper ACR to the famed German track. The collective relied on a fund-raising effort and a few sponsors to even come this far in their quest and while they did fall short of their ultimate goal (the Huracan was still nine seconds faster around the track) they have nothing to be ashamed about.

They did what FCA and Dodge should’ve done in the first place. They gave the Viper a proper tribute and had they not crashed out, who knows if they could’ve really broken that all-too precious seven-minute barrier. It doesn’t matter now, nor should it because the Viper Owners Association represented the Viper about as well as they could. Well done, guys.

PostHeaderIcon Missed Out on the Cool Porsche 911 R? You’ll be Able to Buy One Soon

Introduced in 2016, the 911 R is arguably one of the greatest sports cars Porsche has ever built. Essentially a wingless GT3 with a manual transmission, it was designed as the ultimate purist 911 and it was received with great enthusiasm. Interest was so high that all 911 units were sold before the car’s official launch, despite a $184,900 sticker that was $9,000 higher than that of the 911 GT3. What’s more, the 911 R began to fetch more than $1 million on the used-car market after only a couple of months on the road. All told, it was way too exclusive to become a proper purist sports car since only a few rich customers had access to it. But things could change in the near future.

According to Porsche R&D boss Michael Steiner, the German firm plans on launching a purist version of the 911 with a regular production run. Speaking to Autocar at the launch of the new Cayenne, he said that Stuttgart sees “potential for more purist versions of sports cars with no limitation” on production numbers. This could mean that Porsche might introduce a model similar to the 911 R as a regular member of the Porsche family instead of a highly limited edition that would send prices through the roof and leave many enthusiasts out of the picture.

Continue reading for the full story.

PostHeaderIcon Mercedes-AMG S65 Cabriolet Brabus Rocket 900

Brabus has dropped the gloves ahead of the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show with the presentation of what it claims to be the world’s most powerful four-door cabriolet. The German tuner has been known to use superlatives like this from time to time, but it’s hard to argue against its claim for the tuned up version of the 2017 Mercedes-AMG S65. This gnarly beast packs 888 horsepower and 885 pound-feet of torque, and that’s only one part of the story of the car now known as the Brabus Rocket 900.

We’ve been down this road before with Brabus as the history of its programs wearing the “Rocket” name stretches back to the last decade with the CLS-Class and the SL-Class. Even the coupe version of the Mercedes-AMG S65 has been the recipient of the “world’s fastest” treatment, a testament to the kind of audacity the tuner is capable of. Needless to say, the new Rocket 900 follows along the same path, with almost 900 horsepower in tow to go with a menu of aerodynamic enhancements, suspension improvements, new wheels, and a plush interior offering. The result is a car that not only performs like a car with rockets strapped onto it, but also looks the part of what a fully dressed up AMG S65 should look like. It’s a fitting kit from the tuning company that has given us no shortage of over-the-top tuning programs over the years.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

PostHeaderIcon BMW M2 CSL Details Leaked

Rumors of higher performance version of the already exciting BMW M2 have been flying around for quite some, and even though the Germans have yet to confirm it, we’ve spotted many prototypes on public roads. Set to arrive by the end of 2017, this new M2 will follow in the footsteps of the M4 CS. In short, it will lighter and more powerful than the standard model. The name is not yet official, but the M2 CSL has been speculated a lot. However, BMW could also go with the M2 CS or, according to newer reports, the M2 Competition. But while the name is still a mystery, a new report adds a few new pieces to the M2 CSL puzzle.

Arguably the biggest news is that the M2 CSL could have around 400 horsepower. With the standard M2 rated at 365, it was believed that the M2 CLS won’t get more than 380 horses, but it seems that BMW wants to take this coupe closer to M4 territory. Munich is also preparing a few exclusive features, like a new Silver Hockenheim paint, which will be offered alongside the already familiar Sunset Orange. Inside, the Dakota black upholstery will be paired with Polar Blue or Kyalami Orange stitching, while perforated leather will be offered as an option. Needless to say, it’s a welcomed departure from the usual black cabin found in M cars. Finally, word has it that production will be capped at only 1,000 units, with ordering to begin in January 2018 and deliveries in May.

Continue reading for the full story.

PostHeaderIcon Kimi Raikkonen Actually Cracked A Smile While Driving The Alfa Romeo Guilia Quadrifoglio: Video

Kimi Raikkonen is a robot. Kimi Raikkonen has the emotional capacity of a cardboard cut-out of himself. Kimi Raikkonen cracks a smile about as often as a total solar eclipse. We’ve all read and heard about the stone-faced demeanor of the Ferrari F1 driver and former world champion. This is the same guy, after all, who once famously said on national television that he was dropping a deuce during a tribute for F1 legend Michael Schumacher. Yet for all of his “Iceman” moments, Raikkonen is also regarded as one of the best race car drivers in the world today, and together with teammate and four-time champion Sebastian Vettel and Antonio Giovinazzi, Ferrari’s third F1 driver, the Iceman put those skills to the test for a day in the track onboard the Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio.

The following video here is what happens when you get Raikkonen, Vettel, and Giovinazzi to race the wheels of the 505-horsepower Giulia Quadrifoglio. You get lots of smoke, plenty of sideways action, and an actual smile creep in to the face of the Finn. For what it’s worth, it’s hard to tell what’s more shocking between seeing the Giulia Quadrifoglio perform the way it did on the track with three F1 drivers driving it or the fact that Raikkonen seems to be having a ball of a time in the car. My money’s on the latter since the sight of a smiling Raikkonen is worthy enough to actually steal some of the spotlight away from the car he’s driving. Either way though, it’s good to see the three Ferrari racers enjoy themselves with Alfa’s new performance sedan. Heck, if the Giulia Quarifoglio actually made Kimi smile, that’s vindication of the sedan’s prowess in it of itself already.

PostHeaderIcon Flogging The 2017 Honda Civic Type R

It doesn’t get hotter than the 2017 Honda Civic Type R – at least this month. That comes as no surprise since the Type R is just now making its debut in the U.S. after decades of devouring foreign roads in markets worldwide. This performance variant is based on the 10th-generation Civic, a compact car with a pedigree that needs no explanation. Honda wanted me to give the new Type R a swing, so they flew me to Seattle, Washington for some seat time in those heavily bolstered front buckets on winding mountain roads and through all 16 corners of The Ridge Motorsports Park just north of Olympia.

The Civic Type R arrives amidst a raging fight in the hot hatch segment. The Ford Focus RS and its ridiculous powertrain and Drift Mode square up against the dethroned champion, the Volkswagen Golf R and the rally-bred Subaru WRX STI. What these competitors all have in common are four cylinders being force-fed via turbochargers, six-speed manual transmissions, and AWD. Tit for tat, these compact brawlers are mostly equal – save for the Focus RS’ extra horsepower and the Civic Type R’s lack of AWD. Wait, what? Yep, Honda ditched the idea of a heavy, complex, and parasitic AWD system in favor of a lighter curb weight, a limited slip differential, and its dual-axis front MacPherson struts. The result is a 3,100-pound car that hangs with its toughest competitor despite its 44-horsepower, 55-pound-foot disadvantage.

Continue reading for my on-track driving impressions.

PostHeaderIcon The Fastest Car In The World Is A Ford?!

The title for “fastest car in the world” is a pretty hotly contested one. Officially, the old Bugatti Veyron Super Sport holds the record at 268 mph. The new Bugatti Chiron is estimated to reach speeds of nearly 280, but it hasn’t been officially tested yet. And then we have the Hennessey Venom GT which hit 210, technically beating the Veyron, but there are several factors that disqualify it from meeting Guinness Records requirements.

PostHeaderIcon Honda Civic Type R – Driven

Performance vehicles are pushing the envelope beyond the imagination these days. Insane horsepower numbers and bleeding-edge technology contribute to ridiculous lap times and sub-four-second sprints to 60 mph. But more often than not, these all-out performance machines – think Chevrolet Corvette, Jaguar F-Type, and Porsche Cayman – are too compromised for daily living and cost a significant chunk of change. But imagine combining the impressive performance of a two-seater coupe with the functionality of a five-door hatchback and a reasonable price. That’s exactly what that hot hatch segment does. And now for the 2017 model year, Honda has launched its all-new Civic Type R. What’s more, Honda is bringing it to America for the first time.

Based on the new 10th-generation Honda Civic, the new Type R adds power, a sophisticated suspension system, and functional aero to the family-friendly Civic hatchback. It’s like having cake and eating it, too. Now, the Civic Type R has some stiff competition. The 350-horsepower Ford Focus RS is the reigning performance king and the Volkswagen Golf R is the grown-up’s idea of a performance-minded hatchback. And if having a hatchback isn’t a priority but hitting the rally circuit is, there’s always the Subaru WRX STI. The Civic Type R sort of carves its own niche in the segment with an outlandish design, heavily bolstered front buckets, and the lowest starting price of the bunch, but mixes it with only 306 horsepower and the lack of all-wheel drive. To find out how the Civic Type R recipe tastes, Honda flew me to Washington State for time on a private racetrack and scenic drives near the Olympic National Forest. Here’s what I found.

Continue reading for the full driven review.

PostHeaderIcon Detroit Electric Still Has A Pulse, Or So It Claims

Believe it or not, but Detroit Electric is still alive and kicking. I won’t hate on anyone thinking otherwise because even I thought the company had long hit the dirt. But it’s apparently not true. The company is headed to the Cenex Low Carbon Vehicles event in the U.K. next week and it’s bringing an announcement of some kind that points towards its future as an EV company. This should be interesting.

The company was coy on details when it announced its intentions, but it seems that it’s now on a far better financial footing than where it was in the past. At least that’s the picture Chief Technical Officer and Company Director, Richie Frost, tried to paint when he said that the company has “secured the solid financial foundation to embark on our business plan.” More to that, Frost added that the company is actually embarking on a major recruiting drive with plans to fill its ranks with anywhere from 150 to 200 new employees. For sure, it’s a revealing development that puts to light a different perspective on what the company’s status is at the moment and moving forward. Whether this new-found optimism lasts is an entirely different matter. After all, this is the same company that promised to launch the SP:01 electric sports car three years ago and then added an electric SUV and an electric sedan to its plans two years ago. Nothing’s come out of it so it’s going to be interesting to see if the “solid financial foundation” Frost is talking about has legitimate legs to it.

Continue after the jump to read the full story

PostHeaderIcon Dodge Viper ACR’s Quest For Nurburgring Glory Still Falls Short

Production of the Dodge Viper has officially ended, so there really is little reason to hope for the American sports car to somehow find its way back into the land of the living. If there ever were people who have been properly commemorating the departure of the beloved Viper, nobody’s doing a better job at it than the good people of the Viper Owners Association. For those who don’t remember, members of the organization successfully embarked on a crowdfunding movement to send the Dodge Viper ACR to the Nurburgring to see if it could take down the lap record for a production car, a record currently held by the Lamborghini Huracan Performante.

It had an initial run back in July and, while it didn’t succeed in toppling the Huracan Performante’s 6:52.01 lap time, it did manage to post a still-impressive time of 7:03.45. Not content with its pace, the group went back to the ‘Ring with drivers Dominik and Mario Farnbacher in tow, determined to succeed where it failed the first time. Unfortunately, their best efforts “only” resulted in a fastest lap of 7:03.23, which was still more than 10 seconds off of the pace of the Huracan Performante. Disappointing as it was – the team blamed the hot weather as a factor in the car’s performance, as per Road & Track – there’s still reason to be optimistic as the team plans to make a third trip back to the ‘Ring to see if it can at least break the seven-minute barrier, or better yet, do what is becoming a seemingly insurmountable task and take down the Huracan Performante’s record.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

PostHeaderIcon Aston Martin Vantage

Around for a little more than a decade, the first-generation Aston Martin Vantage is about to the discontinued, with a redesigned, second-gen model underway for 2017. Official details are still under wraps as of this writing, but prototypes and test cars have been spied on public roads or the Nurburgring track since late 2014. Come 2017, and Aston Martin is testing the next-gen Vantage more than ever, a sign that the official unveiling is just around the corner.

Recent reports have suggested that the British are already testing the Biturbo, 4.0-liter, V-8 mill, and our paparazzi claim that the test car is fitted with the new AMG-developed powerplant. The unit comes as part of a deal Aston Martin and Daimler signed in 2014, which also includes various electronics and likely further drivetrain assistance. The Vantage will also get the new V-12 that debuted in the DB11. We should find out more toward the end of the year, so stay tuned for new info. Meanwhile, let’s have a look at what we already know about the upcoming Aston Martin Vantage.

Continue reading to find out more about the next Aston Martin Vantage.

PostHeaderIcon Aston Martin’s Plan To Use A V-6 Engine For Its Upcoming Sports Car Is A Sign Of Things To Come

While much of Aston Martin’s focus these days rests on the Valkyrie hypercar, the British automaker is also keeping one eye to the future. Don’t look now, but that “future” that Aston’s looking into could be devoid of any traditional V-12 or V-8 engines. Instead, the future of the British automaker’s engines could come in the form of a smaller V-6 engine, starting with the sports car it’s developing to rival what the likes of Ferrari, McLaren, and Lamborghini are currently offering.

Aston Martin CEO Andy Palmer didn’t flip into the details of the company’s plans, but he did tell The Financial Times that the upcoming sports car that will slot below the Valkyrie hypercar will feature a turbocharged V-6 engine and a manual transmission to go with it. Without revealing the reasons why, Aston Martin’s decision to go small on the engine was likely done to accommodate displacement-based laws being enacted in countries where the company plans to sell the sports car. In other words, stringent laws that cater to smaller engines will prevent Aston from going down its usual V-12 or V-8 paths, unless the company is perfectly suited to paying stiff taxes for these cars, of which Aston Martin apparently has no plans of doing. It’s may be a disappointing turn of events for purists who love themselves the thirst-quenching roar of a naturally aspirated V-12 engine, but the decision to go with a V-6 for its future sports car is a sign that Aston Martin is willing to forego heritage in favor of acquiescing to the ever-evolving landscape of the business.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

PostHeaderIcon Manhart Racing’s Program For The New M5 Packs A Punch

There are a number of certainties we can always count on in the auto industry. One of those is the inevitability that comes with building tuning programs for new models, and we’re seeing it now with Manhart Racing. We all know that the German tuner has shown a particular affection for all things BMW and it’s no surprise that with the launch of the BMW M5 on the horizon, Manhart Racing is already preparing a tuning kit for the performance saloon. Heck, it even has a name for it already: MH5 800.

Now to be clear; the tuner does not have the kit ready yet. It’s still in the development phase, which explains why it only has one rendering to show all of us. But, we can make out what the tuner’s plans for the new M5 are and, for what it’s worth, we can at least expect some serious business from the M5 once the kit is on the market. The name of the program alone gives away the expected output of the car in PS measurements. That’s 800 PS, which converts to about 789 horsepower, almost 200 ponies more than the 591-horsepower output of the “standard” M5. The expected figures from this program ought to be enough to make Manhart Racing’s first aftermarket offering for the BMW M5 something that’s worth keeping an eye on.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

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