2017-01-30: Daytona winner, Vanquish S drop top and Aston and Lola headed for auction ...
With a very close and somewhat controversial finish, this weekend's Daytona 24 Hours ended with first and second placed cars running nose to tail. Both were of the all new Cadillac DPi-V.R. with the winning machine being piloted by Max Angelelli, Jeff Gordon and brothers Ricky and Jordan Taylor. Based on a Dallara chassis and using a naturally aspirated V8, the Cadillac was clearly the car to have and to mark the occasion we have further expanded the DPi-V.R. gallery.
During the weekend, Aston Martin revealed the first images of the Vanquish S Volante. Its specification and price are similar to that of the Coupe announced late last year, so the car features a 595 bhp version of the venerable V12 engine, mated to an eight-speed automatic gearbox.
Another Aston Martin set to make headlines in a few weeks is this Ulster consigned to the Bonhams Les Grandes Marques du Monde au Grand Palais sale in little over a week. The Ulster on offer was first raced at Le Mans in 1935 and had a very long competition career after that. It is estimate to sell for at least Euro 1.6 million.
Rival auctioneer Artcurial will offer this Lola T70 Mk2 Spyder at their official Retromobile sale Friday next week. Raced in the Can-Am in period, chassis SL71/29 was rebuilt during the 2000s in the United States after it was damaged by fire late in 1966. It has since been raced on both sides of the Atlantic and is estimated to sell for Euro 250,000 - 350,000.
2017-01-27: Daytona winners from Ford and Porsche, and the new Mazda RT24-P ...
This weekend, the racing season starts in earnest with the Daytona 24 Hours. To mark the occasion, we have taken a renewed look at a pair of previous winners. The earliest of these two is the original Ford GT, which won the 2000 km race at Daytona back in 1965. One of the prototypes for the definitive GT40s, it featured a slightly different design and mechanicals. The cars that raced at Daytona had been developed by Carroll Shelby over the winter and boasted many improvements compared to the 1964 specification. This allowed chassis GT/103 to score what was the first major victory for the new Ford racer. Featured in our 48-shot gallery are all three survivors of the original five prototypes built in 1964.
Porsches have always faired very well at Daytona, and more often than not in privateer hands. One of those independent victories came in 1979 when the Interscope team clinched the outright victory with their brand new Porsche 935. One of the very last complete 935s built by the factory, this 1979-spec machine featured a single turbocharger to comply with stricter regulations. Regardless, chassis 930 990 0029, helmed by Danny Ongais, Ted Field and Hurley Haywood grabbed the win. This was Haywood's fourth of a record five victories in the Daytona 24 Hours.
One of the most striking cars on the grid this weekend is the Mazda RT24-P. Although based around a Riley/Multimatic chassis, it features a bespoke exterior design, which is the most visually pleasing of all prototypes due to hit the track this weekend. The two RT24-Ps have their work cut out as they were outpaced in qualifying but anything can happen in 24 hours, especially in a field packed with brand-new cars.
2017-01-25: Lovely Group 5 Lancia Beta Montecarlo and first Ecclestone Brabham ...
After all the auction news, we now felt it time to take a closer look at a spectacular racing car and they do not get much more spectacular than the Lancia Beta Montecarlo Turbo silhouette racer. Built to comply with the Group 5 regulations, the diminutive four-cylinder engined machine was pitched against the mighty Porsche 935s. Less powerful but also lighter, it proved a worthy adversary for the Porsches and Lancia was crowned World Champion in 1981. Today we take a renewed look at the Martini-liveried with several works cars pictured in a 102-shot gallery.
The big motorsports news this week was the dismissal of Bernie Ecclestone from running Formula 1. He was at the helm of the sport since 1978 and for the first part of his tenure, he was also in charge of the Brabham Formula 1 team. He bought a share in the team in 1972 and the first car created under his leadership was the BT37 Cosworth. Raced by the likes of Carlos Reuteman, it was not particularly successful but it did allow Ecclestone time to restructure the team. The featured BT37 is the sole survivor of the two cars built in 1972.
2017-01-23: 2017 Scottsdale Auctions report and 250-shot gallery ..
Last week, all eyes were on Scottsdale, Arizona as most of the major auction companies staged sales. We visited the Bonhams, RM Sotheby's and Gooding auctions. They were topped by these Jaguar E-Type Lightweight Roadster ($7.4 million), Mercedes-Benz 540 K Spezial Roadster ($6.6 million) and Bugatti Type 35 ($3.3 million) respectively. Also worth noting were a one-owner Mercedes-Benz 300 SL sold by Gooding for just shy of $1.5 million and the Ferrari Enzo offered from first owner Tommy Hilfiger by RM, which changed hands for $2.7 million.
From our visits, we have made three separate galleries with a total of 250 shots, which serve to illustrate a brief report from the auctions and the current state of the market. At the bottom of the report, links can be found to the results of the individual sales.
2017-01-20: Rare Porsche and Squire headed for auction and news from McLaren and MINI ...
Today, the auctions at Scottsdale with RM Sotheby's starting their second day, while the two-day Gooding sale starts. The Bonhams Scottsdale Sale has already concluded and the results are topped by this lovely Jaguar E-Type Lightweight Roadster.
Among the many great cars due to cross the block today is this very rare Porsche 911 GT2 offered by RM. Built as a homologation special for the competition car, this is one of the most extreme road cars produced by Porsche during the 1990s. Only 57 examples were built, and the 911 GT2 available has had just two owners from news.
Gooding, meanwhile, has consigned an even rarer Squire 1500. Using a gem of a supercharged four-cylinder engine, less than a dozen were built during the second half of the 1930s. The Ranelagh Tourer on offer today has recently been completely restored by a British specialist and was shown at last year's Concorso d'Eleganza Villa d'Este.
Ahead of the official launch at the upcoming Geneva Motor Show, McLaren have released the first details of the second generation Super Series that is due to replace the 650S models.
BMW owned MINI announced the latest addition to their John Cooper Works line-up in the form of this Countryman. It uses the same 231hp engine as fitted to the other MINI body styles, which can be mated to a six-speed manual or eight-speed automatic gearbox.
2017-01-18: Magnum P.I.'s Ferrari and Bonhams Scottsdale preview ...
The 2017 auction season is about to kick off at Scottsdale with a series of major auctions. The first of these is the Bonhams The Scottsdale Auction that will start Thursday afternoon local time. We were at the preview yesterday and have now illustrated our lot list with a 90-shot gallery.
Among the star lots is this Ferrari 308 GTSi qv. It is more special than most as it was one of around five examples of the type used during the filming of the popular television series Magnum P.I. Having survived unmolested, chassis 51941 is now offered by its second owner with less than 40,000 miles on the odometer.
Other highlights due to cross the block in the Bonhams sale are a beautifully preserved Jaguar E-Type Lightweight Roadster, a very rare Ferrari 340 American Vignale Spyder and a highly sought-after Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spyder.
We have also taken a closer look at the Ferrari 250 GT SWB Competizione that starred at last weekend's Interclassics Maastricht.
2017-01-16: 2017 Interclassics Maastricht report and 100-shot gallery ...
This weekend, the 24th annual Interclassics Maastricht show officially kicked off the season for us. The largest show of its kind in the Benelux area, the four-day event attracted just over 25,000 visitors, who were treated to 35,000 m2 of car and car-related displays. Among this year's features was a tribute to Facel Vega with an exhibition of ten distinct examples and the celebration of Ferrari's 70th anniversary. Among the many great cars on show from the famous Italian marque was a rare 250 GT SWB Competizione and a pair of Ferraris that had been originally commissioned by the Dutch Prince Bernhard. Further highlights included a very rare Bizzarrini Europa 1900 GT and the Alfa Romeo Tipo B due to be offered by RM Sotheby's early next month in Paris.
We ventured to the most southern tip of The Netherlands and have captured the 2017 Interclassics Maastricht in a 100-shot gallery that serves to illustrate a concise report of all the highlights.
2017-01-13: Lovely Chevron racer, another new Lotus Exige and new Mercedes-AMG hypercar ...
Up until the end of the 1973 season, Chevrons were relatively straightforward machines built around a spaceframe chassis. Then the small British specialist manufacturer stepped up to produce the Chevron B26, which featured a full aluminium monocoque. Like its predecessors, it was a successful machine in the two-litre class around the world. Today we take a detailed look two Hart-engined examples. Among them is chassis B26-74-10, which is better known as 'Chocolate Drop' thanks to its unusual brown colour. It was a works car and raced by the likes of Brian Redman and Peter Gethin.
Following hot on the heels of the Sport 380 announced last month, Lotus have now revealed the track-only Exige Race 380. It shares the same 375 bhp engine with the road going car but is further stripped down to bring the weight down to just 995 kg. The Race 380 will also come with adjustable suspension and a sequential XTrac gearbox.
The highlight of the 50th anniversary celebrations of Mercedes-AMG will undoubtedly be the introduction of the Project One hypercar later in the year. Using Formula 1 technology, it will feature a hybrid drivetrain that should be good for around 1,000 bhp. We will keep close tabs on the development and bring more news once it is available.
2017-01-11: Italian masterpieces from Ferrari and Alfa Romeo headed for auction ...
At next week's Scottsdale auctions one of the absolute stars on offer will be this Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spyder due to cross the block at Bonhams next Thursday. Shown at the 1961 Brussels Motor Show, it was originally finished in a very rare rust colour. It is also believed to have starred in an Italian movie where it was featured in a particularly exciting chase scene along with a Miura. Today, chassis 2277GT is finished in red and has been maintained to full running order by its British owner.
Bonhams also has a fabulous example of the Alfa Romeo 6C 1750 GS Zagato Spider on offer. One of the great 1930s Alfa Romeos, the car on offer has a known history from new. Following an early life in Switzerland, it was part of the same American collection for four decades from 1962 onwards. The Zagato Spider has more recently been in British hands.
Much rarer than the Zagato coachwork, is the one-off Figoni body fitted on this 6C 1750 GS that is due to cross the block at the Gooding Scottsdale Auctions. This striking machine was shown by Figoni at the 1933 Paris Auto Salon and returned to the city of lights for the 2016 Retromobile show where we captured it. The Figoni Roadster is expected to sell for around $2.5 million.
2017-01-09: 2017 NAIAS day one round-up ...
The first big event of the year is the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. This year's NAIAS kicked off today with the first of a pair of press days. The Volkswagen Group was out in force with several interesting releases. Among them was the new Porsche 911 Carrera GTS. Powered by a 450 hp version of the new twin turbo engine, it is available as a Coupe, Cabriolet and Targa versions. The former also in two- or four-wheel drive versions.
Audi, meanwhile, introduced the second generation SQ5 and previewed the upcoming Q8 in concept form.
Combining a retro design with a cutting edge electric drivetrain is Volkswagen funky I.D. Buzz Concept. As the name suggests, it is a modern take on the legendary Microbus.
Our eye was certainly caught by the all-new Kia Stinger GT. This rear- or all-wheel drive saloon features a range-topping 3.3-litre twin turbo V6, good for 365 bhp.
Japanese luxury manufacturer Lexus used the Detroit show to take the wraps off the fifth generation LS. Larger than ever before, the LS 500 model will be powered by a twin-turbo V6 engine.
AMG kicked off their 50th anniversary celebrations by revealing a substantially updated Mercedes-AMG GLA 45. The compact cross-over boasts a compact four-cylinder that at 375 bhp produces almost 200 bhp per litre.
2017-01-06: American muscle headed for auction and most powerful Bentley road car yet ...
Thoroughbred American muscle cars will be strongly represented in the upcoming Scottsdale auctions. The most exotic of these is the AMC AMX/3, which is one of the headliners at the Gooding sale. One of just five or six built, the example on offer was tested extensively during 1969 and has several unique features. It also boasts a known history from new and was recently shown at the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance.
RM Sotheby's will offer this fabulous AC Shelby Cobra 427. It is one of the very last Shelby Cobras built and has had the original, more docile Ford 428 replaced by the more potent 427 fitted to first big block Cobras.
One of the rarest and most sought after Corvettes is the L88 and a beautifully restored Roadster is on the Bonhams lot list.
British manufacturer Bentley has started the year on a high with the introduction of the Continental Supersports. Powered by a 700hp version of the familiar W12 engine, it is the fastest ever regular production Bentley road car. To cope with the added power, the Supersports also boasts uprated suspension and brakes.
2017-01-04: New Ginetta LMP1 racer for 2018, high-tech Chrysler concept and another Porsche 962C ...
Shortly after the ACO announced a rule freeze for the next five seasons, Ginetta revealed their plans to produce an LMP1 car that is due to make its competitive debut in 2018. The British niche manufacturer called in the services of renowned designers Adrian Reynard and Paolo Cantone to help pen the sophisticated aerodynamics. Talks are also under way with Mecachrome and XTrac to supply the drivetrain for the new prototype racer. Ginetta expects to build and sell no fewer than ten LMP1s. Testing is set to commence shortly after this year's 24 Hours of Le Mans
At this week's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Chrysler took the wraps off this Portal Concept. Packed with sophisticated electronics and boasting very flexible seating and cargo configurations, it is aimed squarely at millennials. The Portal is driven by a single electronic motor that powers the front wheels.
We also found it was time to take a closer look at yet another Porsche 962C. This time, our focus is on chassis 962-141, which was delivered new to Jochen Dauer. He raced the car in striking Tic Tac colours for two seasons in Europe. At the start of 1990, it also made four starts in North America with the likes of Raul Boesel and Bobby Unser tasked with the driving duties. Today, this 962C is owned by a Danish historic racer, who regularly campaigns the car in the Historic Group C Championship.
2017-01-02: Striking Mercedes-Benzes headed for auction in Scottsdale ...
Let us start off by wishing you a happy and prosperous New Year. We look forward to providing you with the quality automotive content you have come used to from us over the past years.
The automotive world has a busy start to 2017 with the upcoming NAIAS in Detroit and the various auctions that will take place in the Scottsdale area later this month. Today, we have taken a first look at a couple of the most interesting lots, all bearing the famous three-pointed star.
RM Sotheby's sale is headlined by this Mercedes-Benz 540 K Spezial Roadster. These cars were already built to order but the chassis on offer is even more special. Many of the car's detail features were created with the help of first owner Rolf Horn. It is estimate to sell for in access of $7.5 million.
Another lovely Mercedes-Benz offered by RM that is more modestly priced is this 190 E 2.5-16 Evolution II. Created with the help of Cosworth as a homologation special for the DTM racers, only 502 examples of this particular model were built. The car on offer is the first offered publicly in North America and has only covered 5,000 km from new.
Of an earlier vintage is this Mercedes-Benz 680 S Erdmann & Rossi Tourer that will cross the block during the Bonhams Scottsdale Auction. A very rare model with several unique features, the chassis on offer was delivered new to the United States but has spent the last couple of decades in Europe.