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0-60 vw volkswagen xl1 xr1 porsche 911 fighter sports car
BY: Bix

Volkswagen XL1 Could Spin Off Cheap, Super-Light Porsche 911 Fighter


Perhaps you're familiar with Volkswagen's XL1. It's basically the anti-matter version of the Bugatti Veyron: a super-exclusive, spared-no-expense VW Group project masterminded by Dr. Ferdinand Piëch in pursuit of never-before-seen performance for a road car. Only where the Veyron chased after top speed records, the XL1 goes for efficiency. (more…)

June 26, 2013 at 01:22 PM
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BY: Bix

Dig The Aston Martin Vanquish Volante, Baby

565 horsepower of droptop naturally-aspirated V12 thunder.

Where an hardtop Aston Martin is now, a convertible version is soon to follow. (Like the lovely DB9 Volante we recently drove.) It's as inevitable as the tides—except for the Rapide, but there's not a lot of market in ragtop sedans. So we are in no way, shape or form surprised to meet the 2014 Aston Martin Vanquish Volante. (more…)

June 25, 2013 at 08:23 PM
Porsche Le Mans 2013 feature image

Porsche Celebrates 50th Year Of The 911 With 100th Career Le Mans Class Victory

Porsche does what it does best: win.

This year's 24 Hours of Le Mans was a good one for Porsche, as the car maker extended its record at the famed endurance race with class wins number 99 and 100. On the Circuit des 24 Heures, the new Porsche 911 RSR fielded by Porsche AG Team Manthey with Porsche works drivers Romain Dumas (France), Marc Lieb (Germany) and Richard Lietz (Austria) won the fiercely competitive GTE-Pro class against strong opposition from Aston Martin, Chevrolet, Ferrari and Viper. In the second 911 RSR, their works driver colleagues Joerg Bergmeister (Germany), Timo Bernhard (Germany) and Patrick Pilet (France) finished second, making the race car from Weissach perfect. In the GTE-Am class, the Porsche 911 GT3RSR run by the customer team IMSA Performance Matmut clinched victory with Frenchmen Raymond Narac, Jean-Karl-Vernay and Christophe Bourret. The victory comes at an appropriate moment for the car maker. In case you'd forgotten, Porsche is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the 911 this year'. Since its introduction and competition debut, the iconic car has accounted for near-countless motorsport victories around the world. Of the 100 Le Mans class titles, 911-based racers have earned more than half. Porsche has stood on the top step of the podium at Le Mans overall 16 times. In 2014, Porsche will return to the overall prototype category. The 81st running of the long distance classic took place in changeable weather with constant showers and under the most difficult conditions. Amidst those celebrating the teams efforts stood Dr. Wolfgang Porsche, Chairman of the Supervisory Board at Porsche AG, and CEO Matthias Miller, as well as Board Members Wolfgang Hatz (Research and Development) and Bernhard Maier (Sales and Marketing) who had witnessed most of the race firsthand round-the-clock in the Porsche pits. In the first hour of the race, the 911 RSR made up positions at just its third outing in the sports car World Endurance Championship WEC, which yielded double points at Le Mans as the third round. With fast lap times and utmost reliability, the Number 92 in particular fought for victory right from the start. The pit stops were predominantly just routine: refuel, tires, driver change then back out on the track. Both works-run Porsche completed the entire distance without the slightest technical problem, apart from a rear light that had to be replaced on the Number 91 Porsche 911 RSR after being nudged by a competitor. The second racer fielded by Porsche AG Team Manthey was thrown back in the field shortly after the start when the safety car was deployed right in front of Joerg Bergmeister which cost the Porsche factory pilot almost two minutes. While some competitors struggled on the difficult and partly wet circuit, the 911 RSR made it safely through the night without any problems and underlined the intention to clinch its maiden victory with consistently fast lap times. Even when torrential rain fell an hour before the finish and its pursuers launched a final attack, Richard Lietz remained unfazed at the wheel of the 91 car. In the final race hours, the Number 91 also gained ground and slipped into second place ahead of the Aston Martin and Ferrari. In the GTE-Am class, at times three Porsche 911 GT3 RSRs ran at the front. At the flag, Raymond Narac, Christophe Bourret and Jean-Karl Vernay, who receives support from Porsche in his Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup campaign this season, brought home the victory. Porsche race driver Patrick Dempsey, one of an all-American driver trio helming the Dempsey Del Piero-Proton 911 GT3 RSR with Porsche works driver Patrick Long and Joe Foster, also held the lead at times. However, after he was blamelessly shunted off the circuit by a sports prototype he had to bury his dream of winning his first Le Mans outing with Porsche. The Le Mans race was overshadowed by the death of Denmarks Allan Simonsen. In the fourth race lap, the Aston Martin pilot crashed into the barriers in the fast Tertre Rouge corner and died from his injuries shortly afterwards in the Circuit des 24 Heures Medical Center. Race results: GTE-Pro class 1. Dumas/Lieb/Lietz (F/D/A), Porsche 911 RSR, 315 laps 2. Bergmeister/Bernhard/Pilet (D/D/F), Porsche 911 RSR, 315 3. Dumbreck/Mcke/Turner (GB/D/GB), Aston Martin, 314 4. Magnussen/Garcia/Taylor (DK/E/USA), Chevrolet Corvette, 312 5. Beretta/Kobayashi/Vilander (MC/J/SF), Ferrari 458 Italia, 312 6. Bruni/Fisichella/Malucelli (I/I/I), Ferrari 458 Italia, 311 GTE-Am class 1. Narrac/Bourret/Vernay (F/F/F), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 306 laps 2. Perazzini/Case/OYoung (I/I/CDN), Ferrari 458 Italia, 305 3. Gerber/Griffin/Cioci (ZA/IRL/I), Ferrari 458 Italia, 305 4. Dempsey/Long/Foster (USA/USA/USA), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 305 7. Henzler/Gibon/Milesi (D/F/F), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 300 8. Ried/Roda/Ruberti (D/I/I), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 300 9. Collard/Perrod/Crubile (F/F/F), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 298 [via Porsche]
June 25, 2013 at 01:05 PM
0-60 mercedes-benz slc slr slt sls gt amg sports car new small
BY: Bix

Mercedes-Benz Wants You To See Their Secret New Sports Car

So they're handing out "official spy pictures."

The automotive journalism term "official spy photographs" sounds about as oxymoronic as "jumbo shrimp," though the product they describe isn't nearly as delicious. Manufacturer-released spy shots are a classic way for a car company to get ahead of a story, and the automotive equivalent of a photo-shoot selfie; instead of letting the Brenda Priddys of the world snap up pictures of prototypes with their pants down, the car company puts out a flattering image that shows just what they want you to see.

In this case, Mercedes-Benz and AMG want to show us that they are, indeed, working on a new sports car—one that, from the looks of it, shares the SLS AMG's general cab-backwards proportions in spite of being a bit smaller overall. From the looks of it, the car doesn't have gullwing doors, but if those proportions are any guide, it'll be a looker.

That's what we know for sure. However, the gang over at Car and Driver have their ears to the ground. They say the car will likely be called GT or SLC, and instead of being an SLS replacement, it'll supplement the bigger sports car in showrooms at a lower price point (figure in the low-to-mid $100,000 range). In spite of reduced usage of carbon fiber for cost reasons, the GT/SLC should still be a couple hundred pounds lighter than the SLS (off whose platform it's based). Power is expected to come from AMG's new twin-turbo 4.0 liter V8, making around 500 horses to start; subsequent versions, such as a Black Series model, will likely push that up towards or past 600 ponies. The AMG dual-clutch seven-speed automatic will handle the grunt en route to the rear wheels.

As much as we don't want to see the SLS AMG (or its naturally-aspirated 6.2 liter V8) pushed to the sidelines, the notion of a smaller, lighter sports car built on the same rock-solid platform fills us with a fair amount of glee. Plus, we're hoping this new car will give AMg a chance to rectify the SLS's biggest flaw: those really unfortunate headlamps. [via Mercedes-Benz, Car and Driver]

June 24, 2013 at 05:13 PM
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BY: Bix

2014 Corvette Stingray Is Almost As Quick As A C6 Z06

Or even a ZR1, depending on how you measure it.

Chevy's been drip-teasing the new 2014 Corvette Stingray for months now, ever since they revealed it on the eve of the Detroit Auto Show back in January. They've shown us the various colors, they've shown us the convertible version, they've shown us the option packages and revealed how much power its new smallblock V8 will make... (more…)

June 21, 2013 at 04:05 PM
BY: Bix

Lamborghini Gallardo Replacement Coming This Fall?

At least in concept car form, perhaps.

If you're a Lamborghini fanatic looking to buy a mid-engined super sports car in the "rich people consider this reasonably cheap even thought it costs as much as a decent house" range, it's been a tough couple of years. (more…)
June 20, 2013 at 01:36 PM
BY: Bix

Nismo Nissan GT-R Coming, Could Lap The 'Ring In 7:18

Will you have the balls to handle a 570 hp Godzilla?

Just about everybody knows by now that the Nissan GT-R destroys tracks the way its kaiju namesake destroys Japanese cities. Back in April 2009, a GT-R ripped around the Nordschleife in 7:26.7—and that was the O.G. R35 GT-R with its 478 horsepower engine. It's been upgraded multiple times since then, so a 2014 model could probably knock a few seconds off that time. But if you're looking for One GT-R To Rule The 'Ring, then hold on for the NISMO GT-R.

Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn spilled the beans on the NISMO GT-R earlier this year, when he said, "It would be unthinkable for us to develop a range of Nismo road cars without including the GT-R. The GT-R Nismo will be special." But we didn't know how special—not until the crew at Top Gear caught word from Nissan that the car will lap the Nordschleife in less than 7:18. That'd make it faster than all but two production cars—the Lexus LFA Nürburgring Edition (7:14.64) and the Dodge Viper ACR (7:12.13). But the Viper's basically a street-legal race car, while the LFA Nürburgring, well, you're more likely to see Kanye West riding a unicycle down Rodeo Drive than you are to see one of them in the flesh. In terms of performance that's accessible and insane, the NISMO GT-R sounds like it'll be hard to beat.

Don't expect wild changes in the car compared to a regular GT-R. The power bump will be around 25 horses, to the 570 hp range, while the suspension will also be upgraded for improved handling. Oh, and Nissan says they pride themselves on making NISMO models look better than their regular counterparts; based on the transition from 370Z to NISMO 370Z, we'd say that means more air inlets, new spoilers front and rear at the very least. Look for the NISMO GT-R in the latter part of 2014. [via Top Gear]

June 19, 2013 at 07:36 PM
0-60 cars audi-sport-quattro-s1 new quattro concept frankfurt
BY: Bix

Audi May Be Building A 650 HP Sport Quattro "Concept" For Frankfurt

You may commence with the drooling.

The guys at Audi have taken pride in building prime daydream-worthy concept cars for decades now, but few of them received the acclaim that fell upon the Quattro concept of 2010. (more…)
June 19, 2013 at 03:14 PM
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