Four-Links – electric Ferrari, electric cabover, GMC Twin Six, fastback Grand National

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Servicing a Ferrari can sometimes cost as much as an entirely new car. And then there’s their apparent propensity to catch fire. But out of adversity comes opportunity, and Eric Hutchinson embraced the former to create the latter when he bought a fire-damaged 1978 Ferrari 308 GTS and converted it to electric power using three AC51 HPEVS electric motors good for a combined 465 horsepower. Engine Swap Depot has the details.

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* Another unlikely place for an electric drivetrain? A cabover truck. Yet that’s just what Nissan attempted in 1973 with its EV4-P and EV4-H concept trucks, as we learned from Japanese Nostalgic Car this week.

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* A more typical cabover engine choice might be the GMC Twin Six V-12 of the 1960s, one of the last attempts to wring as much power out of gasoline engine packaging for big trucks before the era of diesel took over. Mac’s Motor City Garage has more on the unusual engine.

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* Speaking (slightly) of appropriateness, how was it ever appropriate that Buick named its Grand National after the stock car racing series but it was Chevrolet and Pontiac’s chassis-mates to the Grand National that got the aerodynamic aids for stock car racing? As one of our readers pointed out earlier this week, one intrepid Grand National owner embarked on a project to rectify that by adding a Monte Carlo Aerocoupe’s rear glass to his GN and making it look factory.

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* Finally, there’s probably no more inspiration to swapping a Volkswagen’s VR6 into a Triumph TR6 than the nameplay, but as we see at Stance is Everything, at least one hot rodder went ahead and built a VR6-powered TR6 anyway.


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Source: blog.ritedrive.com

Engine swap-a-bration: Concorso Italiano highlights once-repowered Ferraris

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Ferrari serial number 0438. Photos courtesy Concorso Italiano.

For all their vaunted status and multiple millions they sell for these days, Ferraris were once used cars – yesterday’s news with an engine that in many cases proved a liability rather than another part of the mystique. So while an engine swap in any other car’s past might make for a curiosity, engine-swapped Ferraris qualify for a class all their own at this year’s Concorso Italiano.

As Randy Cook, author of two books devoted specifically to engine-swapped Ferraris – Bowtie Ferraris and Blue Oval, et al, Ferraris – noted, not every vintage Ferrari owner likes to admit that his car once relied on something as common as a Chevrolet or Ford V-8 for power. “Some people do, though some don’t want the notoriety,” he said. “Even when it’s public knowledge, some don’t want it to be publicized.”

Yet Cook has documented 99 instances in which former owners ditched the original Ferrari engine for one either more powerful, more reliable, or more easily serviced: 76 of them using Chevrolet engines, 14 using Ford engines, four using Buicks, two using Offenhausers, and one each using a Chrysler, Mercedes, and Maserati engine. Pretty much all of them occurred in the mid-Fifties through late 1960s.

Cook said he believes still more engine-swapped Ferraris remain undocumented. “My guess is that every one that went to South America had an American engine in it at one point,” he said.

Generally, Cook said, owners of street-driven Ferraris chose to repower their cars following a failure of the original engine. As for Ferraris dedicated to racing, about half got repowered following an engine failure, the rest because another engine was cheaper to maintain or because another engine proved more competitive.

“For example, they could still run the same class with a 5.0-liter Chevrolet engine that they previously ran with the original 3.0-liter Ferrari engine,” Cook said.

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Ferrari serial number 0235.

Noteworthy examples of Ferraris that once relied on something other than Ferrari power include 0666, the first 250 Testa Rossa, which famously sold for $16 million five years ago (and which had a Ford V-8 installed in the mid-1960s); and 0235, a 212 Inter Pinin Farina cabriolet displayed at Paris and Brussels when new (and which later received a Chevrolet V-8).

Almost every engine-swapped Ferrari returned to Maranello power during the price bubble of the late 1980s and early 1990s, largely thanks to collector Dick Merritt, who stockpiled at least two dozen removed Ferrari engines during the years prior. Cook said that, to his knowledge, only one Ferrari remains with its swapped engine still underhood: serial number 1175, the 1959 250 GT Series 1 Pinin Farina coupe that he once owned and that inspired the Concorso class when Tom McDowell spotted it at last year’s event.

Perhaps due to the reluctance of current-day Ferrari owners to address the engine-swap history of their cars, Cook said he and McDowell are still searching for examples to fill the class. Among those slated to appear are the above mentioned serial number 0235 and serial number 0438, a 1954 500 Mondial once powered by a 320hp Corvette V-8.

Concorso Italiano takes place August 20 at Black Horse Golf Course in Monterey Bay, California. For more information, visit Concorso.com.


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Source: blog.ritedrive.com

Aston Martin DBS vs Ferrari California

The Aston Martin DBS and the Ferrari California are a pair of cars designed for the great art of touring – two vehicles that tease with the promise of wind in your hair, long straight roads and endless sunshine, but which is better? Both cars hark back to the golden age of tourers – the Ferrari brings memories of the 365 California of 1966, while the DBS’ ancestor proudly roamed the roads of the same era with its bullish, muscular frame. Their descendants were both released in the late 00’s, 2007 for the Aston and 2008 for the California, making you think that someone, somewhere wanted the automotive contest of their fathers to once again rage free on the highways of the world.

Aston Martin DBS

Aston Martin DBS For Sale

The DBS sits in a similar frame to the DB9, packing a 5.9L V12 under the hood, whilst the comparatively svelte California is powered by a 4.3L V8. When it comes to the all-important facts and figures of performance, the Ferrari hits 60 in 3.8 seconds, fast enough to turn all but the neatest coiffure from high style to high times, half a second faster than its British cousin, which it also edges out at top speed – 193 to 191 MPH respectively. The California has a true sense of composure however, the speeds you hit never feel as all-consuming as they do on some other cars. Depending on your personality, speed demon or weekend cruiser, this could fall either into the pro or con category for you.

To drive, they both fit neatly into the GT category, but at different ends of the spectrum. The California feels comfortable on long journeys while maintaining a balance and ease of driving. The DBS on the other hand is more wild, with its traction control earning its pay handily on any high-speed drive, with the Aston having a tendency to go from an easy drive to a thrill-ride pretty quickly. It’s fun, and never feels anything less than fast but the California is a more balanced ride.

So the California wins round one, but when you think Aston Martin, the idea of sophistication, of design, of hand-stitched leather (how could we forget?) is never far from our minds, so let’s take a look at the car’s design and aesthetics. As mentioned above, the DBS’ body is broadly similar to that of the DB9, with a few additions to give a more aggressive, racing look, such as the deep cut vents you’ll find in the hood. Inside, you’ll find the same plush luxury you’ve come to expect – immaculate leather coats the surfaces, with magnesium alloy paddle ratio-selectors sitting comfortably behind the wheel. It’s inestimably Aston, while in some other cars it could come across as pretentious, in the DBS it just feels right.

Ferrari California

Ferrari California For Sale

The California’s design has the classic Ferrari look, with swollen and muscular haunches sitting above the wheel-arches, and retro-style vents on the wings. From a cursory look at the interior, you’d feel like you were playing a game of ‘spot the difference’ with the Aston. Once again, beautifully-stitched leather abounds, but on closer inspection, the California lacks some of the class that can be found in the DBS, making up for it with increased driver comfort.

On the price front, a DBS with little mileage will set you back around $140K, with a California rolling up at around the same price, occasionally falling to around $120K.

The final verdict – the DBS puts on a very strong show, with a large, powerful engine pushing what feels like a mobile clubhouse to great speeds and providing a fun ride, but the California is able to just edge ahead on comfort and speed. It provides a more balanced package, delivering the traditional Ferrari blend of aesthetics and performance that is what led many of us to love cars in the first place.

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Source: Exoticcarlist.com

BMW M4 Competition Sport Set For Limited Run In Spain

2017 BMW M4 Competition

The list of cool things native to Spain, topped by Jamón ibérico, La Liga and Ibiza, grows a little longer with the introduction of BMW’s newest addition to their M4 lineup, the M4 Competition Sport Edition. Limited to a run of just 60 units, Spain is the only market that will receive the middle-child of the M4 model range, sandwiched between the standard M4 and track-focused M4 GTS.

In essence, the BMW M4 Competition Sport appears to be a slightly less frenetic version of the BMW M4 GTS — a diet M4 GTS if you will — perfect for deep-pocketed customers who crave a little more flamboyance, just a few ticks more of performance, and occasionally require the use of their rear seats.

BMW M4 Competition Sport

A modest increase of 25-hp via tuning of the M4’s 3.0-liter S55 twin-turbo inline-six means the M4 CS now makes a total of 450-hp, with torque remaining unchanged from the standard M4 at 405lb-ft. In comparison to the M4 GTS, which with the help of water injection makes 500-hp, the increased output may seem insignificant, but note the GTS has a much narrower powerband than the CS, needing to be revved all the way up to 4,000rpm before max torque is available. The CS still produces peak torque at 1,850rpm, a figure which can be translated to read: “usable power.”

And though the extra horsepower does command some recognition, it’s the exterior touches to the M4 CS that make it worthy of a limited edition moniker. At the corners, the CS gets the same M star-spoke “666” style wheels as the M4 GTS, which are polished and forged — without the Acid Orange finish unique to the GTS. Behind the M light-alloy wheels BMW has equipped carbon-ceramic brakes, which are claimed to reduce unsprung mass by 14lbs.

BMW M4 Competition

As we slowly make our way up the M4 CS, we find a generous use of carbon fiber, employed for the front splitter, side skirts, and rear diffuser. These M Performance accessories are matched with the mirror housings and fixed rear spoiler, both finished in CFRP, the later weighing just 3.5lbs.

The M4 CS will only be available in three color combinations, using custom colors and trims from BMW’s Individual line. These include a Brilliant White exterior with a Cohiba fine-grain leather interior, San Marino Blue on San Marino Blue, and Jerez Black with BMW Individual Goldbraun seats and instrument panel.

BMW M4 Competition Sport Interior

Orders are currently being accepted for the BMW M4 Competition Sport Edition at a price of 132,900 euros (~$151,838 US). US customers who feel left out can choose to option their standard M4s with the $5,500 competition package, which comes with the same retuned 450-hp engine and the same 20” star-spoke M light-alloys as the M4 CS. The package also includes staggered tires, different seats (coupe only) and an M sports exhaust system with black chrome tailpipes accented by high-gloss Shadow Line black exterior trim bits.

You won’t be in the limited edition club, but you can opt for a manual transmission if you choose to go this route, unlike with the M4 CS which only gets the dual-clutch automatic.

BMW M4 For Sale

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Source: Exoticcarlist.com

Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG GT3 Race Car

A sports car collector’s dream; this 2014 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG GT3 Race Car is on of the last cars produced and the only one for sale in the United States. This specific car is Chassis #135 and raced in the Pirelli World Challenge for a partial season. This ultra-rare race car is for sale by The Garage in Doral, Florida with only 2,952 miles (4,750 km). The Asking price is $499,900.

Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG For Sale

Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG GT3 Race Car

2014 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG GT3

Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG GT3 Race Car For Sale

White Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG GT3 Race Car

Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG GT3 Race Car USA

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Source: Exoticcarlist.com

Musk Cracks the Whip on Tesla Production, Experts Say ‘Get Real’

Tesla HQ

Everyone and their 90-year-old great aunt knows that Tesla is putting all of its might into reaching a volume target of 500,000 vehicles in 2018, but more voices are now calling CEO Elon Musk’s timeline impossible.

Musk wants high-volume production to start in less than two years, but suppliers tell Reuters that the accelerated target is a pipe dream. Will delays in parts sourcing and other nitty-gritty issues throw cold water on Tesla’s plans (and customers’ Model 3 ownership dreams)?

In the past, Musk said he wants at least 100,000 Model 3 vehicles out the door by the end of 2017, and plans to raise (and spend) $2 billion to see that it happens. There are 373,000 Model 3 reservations to satisfy, as well as boosted Model S and Model X demand.

Not so fast, say a number of people in the know.

The Reuters report cites auto production consultant Ron Harbour of Oliver Wyman, who claims the assembly machinery parts could take up to 18 months to source and install. If the full 18 months are used up just getting the not-yet-finalized Model 3’s assembly line in order, it means production wouldn’t start until November 2017.

Industry forecaster Jeff Schuster of LMC Automotive called Musk’s goal “implausible,” pointing to issues in battery procurement.

Musk plans to source batteries from his massive Nevada Gigafactory, which is currently under construction. Any delay at the Gigafactory will hamper production, regardless of whether the assembly line is ready to go.

The materials that make up lithium-ion batteries are somewhat scarce, meaning there could be a limit on the pace of battery production, says Sam Fiorani of AutoForecast Solutions.

Musk plans to pour more cash into the Gigafactory, but a battery savior might gallop to his rescue with more money. Today, Panasonic announced it would speed up its planned $1.6 billion investment in the factory if Musk asks for it.

There’s no end to the skepticism surrounding Tesla’s production target, but many Musk naysayers also give a grudging benefit of a doubt to the man who can land a rocket upright on a ship.

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Source: Thetruthaboutcars.com

The Mini Clubman’s 2,860-Pound Hitch is Rated R

Mini Clubman Hitch Pixelated, Image Source: Mini

Mini, the British brand built atop the idea of British fashionability, has been incredibly style conscious ever since BMW brought it back from the depths of English oppression. Its iconic Cooper still wears a silhouette that harkens back to the original, but offers modern safety equipment and enough room for life-sized humans. You can order the Union Jack placed on virtually any body panel. And those center-mounted speedometers — as much as they put Flava Flav on notice — were a charming touch, if completely useless.

Yet, posh Britons are a fairly easy bunch to embarrass. For example, flatulence is met with mortified exclamations of “My word!” before said flatulator escapes to another room to make tea.

So, with that in mind, how the hell did the Clubman’s tow hitch make it past the censors?

Mini Clubman Hitch, Image: Mini

Yup … there it is. Introducing the Clubman: the new compact from Mini that’s incredibly excited to tow your next load. Truck Nutz not included.

This image was pulled directly off the Mini press site. I’m sure from any other angle it looks just peachy. But, what is seen cannot be unseen.

[Image: Mini]

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Source: Thetruthaboutcars.com

Rebels, Race on with the Porsche Cayman GT4

New York Cayman GT4 | NY Exotic Vehicles

For the new Porsche aficionados who have been waiting, the time is now as Porsche offers the Cayman GT4. This extraordinary vehicle is race-ready, with forces both unleashed and controlled in its design. Increased downforce, a mid-engine design for optimum weight distribution, and a 6-speed manual gearbox with dual-mass flywheel and self-adjusting clutch will make the Cayman GT4 at home on your local roads or the track. Unleash its powerful 3.8 liter flat-six aluminum engine, and you have at your command 385 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque, and a top track speed of 183 mph. The engine is protected by a range of technology features, including a variable resonance intake system with switchable flaps, electronic engine management, cylinder-specific knock control, on-demand electronically controlled oil pump, pressure sensor for determining engine load, and on-board diagnostics for monitoring emission controls. A Sport Chrono package with “Sport” button is standard.

The body and suspension of the Cayman GT4 are race-inspired, and use both active and passive designs to maximize performance. NY Exotic VehiclesFeatures include Porsche Active Suspension Management lowered by 30 mm, a lightweight spring-strut suspension with front and rear stabilizers, an aluminum structure to provide rear-end rigidity, tire pressure monitoring, and electromechanical power steering with variable steering ratio. Additionally, Porsche uses the Enhanced Porsche Stability Management System for vehicle control that includes antilock brakes, traction control, vehicle stability controls, pre-filling of the brake system, and brake assist. The body of the Cayman GT4 uses an intelligent lightweight construction using aluminum and steel. The rear spoiler is fixed with aluminum wing supports. The windshield has a gray tint at the top, and a water-repellant coating is used on the door windows. Underbody paneling is used to reduce drag. Bi-Xenon headlights in black, tinted taillights with clear lenses, and a specially designed front fascia with integrated daytime running lamps and black surrounds are all standard.

The Cayman GT4 uses Sport Seats Plus with elevated side bolsters, electric backrest adjustment, manual height fore/aft adjustment, backrest shells in silver grey with GT4 logo on the headrests, and available seat heating. A tilt and telescoping steering wheel with leather trim on the steering wheel and gear lever are standard. Two-zone automatic climate control is available. A leather interior with deviated stitching is available. An 18-way adjustable seat with memory is available, as are full bucket seats. Standard electrical and technology features include power windows with one-touch controls, heated windshield washer nozzles, electrically adjustable side mirrors, a 4-speaker CDR audio system with 7-inch touchscreen, universal audio input in the glove box, Bluetooth® hands-free connectivity, HomeLink® programmable door opener, cruise control, and electrical activation of the front and rear luggage compartment lids.

Safety features in the Cayman GT4 are extensive, as would be expected from Porsche engineering. Standard features include 4-wheel disc brakes with 6-piston calipers in the front and 4-piston calipers in the rear, pad wear sensors on every brake pad, electric parking brake, anti-lock brakes, anti-theft system with engine immobilizer, side impact protection system with head and thorax airbags, front dual intelligent airbags, side door beams, and tire pressure monitoring.

Manhattan Motorcars is proud to offer you the Porsche Cayman GT4. Performance, style, and precision engineering offered as a hallmark of Porsche design continues its legacy with the Cayman GT4. Fill out our luxury car finance application online!.

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Source: Manhattanmotorcars.com

Mahindra KUV100: An SUV for the Future Types

Mahindra brand of India has been busy creating concepts for their own burgeoning market, including the KUV100 SUV, their entry into the hatchback crossover arena. The company has been slinging images of the newbie around Mumbai and intends to take on competitors like the Ford Figo, Hyundai Grand i10 and Maruti Suzuki WagonR.

Mahindra KUV100Images courtesy of MahindraKUV.com gallery

The Mahindra KUV100 SUV will be offered in both diesel and standard petrol, with no mention of an electric or hybrid offering just yet. The brand launched the TUV300 earlier in the year, which looks very much like an Indian version of the Jeep Grand Cherokee. Because the swanky new KUV100 is still a concept, it simply looks cooler than its predecessor, but it may appear quite similar in production form—a perhaps smaller version of it. That said, it is important for potential buyers to be realistic about what a concept vehicle is actually going to look like when it hits the market. Automakers spend countless hours and dollars drumming up love for their new offerings– but by the time the actual product emerges, too many hands have had their way and it is often a disappointment in comparison to its promise.

The Mahindra KUV100 is pronounced “One double Oh” and will be rolling out over the next few months as the major auto shows begin to occur. The SUV concept was developed in the company’s own facility in Chennai adhering to global standards and regulations, including those pesky emissions. According to director Pawan Goenka of Mahindra (which is actually named Mahindra & Mahindra, like an egotistical law firm): “We are all set to create a new segment with the launch of the KUV100 which also marks our foray into ground up petrol engines. An ambitious project from the very start, the KUV100, is all set to carve its niche amongst first time car buyers with its unique propositions.”

Mahindra KUV100So…is this what American automakers will be driving while they are living in India making the most of the economic auto boom?

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Unbelievable Lamborghini Huracan and Dodge Viper Drag Race Finish

The Dodge Viper and Lamborghini Huracan are two completely different V10-powered machines. One is a new Italian sports car powered by a 5.2-liter V10 that looks like a speeding rocket, even when it’s at a standstill. On the other hand, you have a mean machine straight out of the U.S.A. with a massive 8.4-liter V10 under the hood. One big difference is the Huracan has its V10 in the back, while the Viper’s is installed in the front.

With both of these cars having V10s, how do they stack up against each other in a half-mile drag race? That’s where a video from TheBayAreaRacing YouTube Channel comes in. The video stars both the Viper and Huracan in a heated battle down a drag strip to determine which is faster. America vs. Italy: who wins?

Check the video below to see that there’s more to this comparison than just raw power.

Vipers For Sale | Huracans For Sale

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Aston Martin Reveals Remarkable Vanquish Zagato Concept

If you find yourself near Lake Como this weekend, it would be worth your while to stop by the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este. Aside from the scenic venue, Aston Martin will be pulling back the curtain on the new Vanquish Zagato Concept. While it may be impossible to improve upon perfection, Zagato has a knack for building the world’s most beautiful cars. The famed Italian styling house is known for low volume coachbuilding, which means their creations are regularly sought after by collectors.

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The new Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Concept marks the fifth collaboration between England and Italy, and the four previous builds have been mainstays of our magazine since 1985. One day we will gather together classic Zagato bodied cars for a Throwback Thursday, but for now lets dive into the details of this stunning supercar. Starting with a solid foundation of a 2016 Vanquish, Andrea Zagato and his team did away with several of the body seams and replaced them with one-piece carbon fiber panels.

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“We pride ourselves on our strong partnership and the creation of the Vanquish Zagato Concept was a true shared experience,” says Zagato’s CEO, Andrea Zagato, “it represents the essence of an important design relationship that dates back over fifty years.”

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Our favorite feature of this concept is the roof. The double bubble design slopes down quickly from the cockpit to make the greenhouse appear smaller. Carbon fiber rocker panels and diffusers give the body a ready to race appearance.

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Italian style and attention to detail permeate the interior. Anodized bronze and aniline leather along with Zagato’s trademark Z emblems are just a few of the aesthetic upgrades. Captivating details can be found everywhere you look; so if you find yourself staring for hours don’t say we didn’t warn you. Stay tuned to Autofluence for more coverage of this weekend’s events.

Aston Martins For Sale

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Mercedes Short Film Introduces Mobility on Land, Water and in the Air

In a new short film, Mercedes celebrates the world premiere of their luxury motor yacht against the picturesque backdrop of the south of France. The Mediterranean coastline offers the perfect, luxury setting for the movie’s protagonists, which include the Arrow460-Granturismo the S-Class Cabriolet and the H145 Mercedes-Benz Style helicopter.

The film illustrates Gottlieb Daimler’s “dream of mobility with the Mercedes star in the three dimensions of land, water and air,” according to a company press release. In addition, these three models were chosen because they “represent the brand’s sensual pure design as well as high standards in terms of luxury, aesthetics and technological perfection,” as stated in the press release.

Check out the video below.

Mercedes-Benz Inventory

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