MINI is today launching the all new MINI Clubman ALL4 – the brand’s first all-wheel drive model in the C-segment. This launch marks the MINI brand’s further advance into the premium compact segment and represents the first ALL4 model to be built at MINI Plant Oxford. MINI’s ALL4 all-wheel drive system, which has previously only been offered on MINI Countryman models, has been specially redeveloped to ensure sportier handling and improved versatility to further enhance the everyday practicality of the new MINI Clubman. MINI Clubman was launched in October 2015 and is notable as MINI’s first vehicle in the competitive C-segment. Now, the brand is offering something new to the market in the form of Clubman ALL4. Available with two of the latest MINI engines, the MINI Cooper S Clubman ALL4 and the MINI Cooper SD Clubman ALL4.
McLaren Automotive continues to strengthen its retail footprint with the opening of four new retail locations in the US. The appointment of McLaren retailers in Bergen County NJ, Boston MA, Houston TX and Palm Beach FL is an important step in the development of the brand and follows the introduction of the new Sports Series model range, which just arrived in showrooms a few weeks ago. The four new retail locations now offer sales and aftersales facilities for all McLaren models, and they will soon complete their new state-of-the-art retail facilities featuring the latest McLaren visual identity. These locations will provide the ultimate in retail experience coupled with market-leading customer service and personal approach.
We are very happy for our Video of the Week to feature a snapshot of a fantastic video for fans of Triumphs and racing alike. John Clancy at Triumph DVD has put out a new DVD that brings you the full story of the Group 44 Inc. race team featuring Bob Tullius, his crew and other important people who were there at the time. From their humble TR3 origins to taking Jaguar back to Le Mans in 1984 with the XJR-5 GTP cars, this is the complete, amazing history. This is the complete history of the Group 44 Inc. race team which was so dominant in Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) and International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) racing in the 1960s, 70s, and 80s. From the origins of the team when Bob Tullius first joined up with fellow racer […]
Triumph TR2, 3, 3A, 4 & 4A – Enthusiast’s Restoration Manual by Roger Williams has been released in ebook format by Veloce Publishing. Previously available as two separate volumes, this book, which covers all Triumph TR2, 3, 3A, 4 & 4A models, explains the characteristics of the different models, what to look out for when purchasing and how to restore a TR cost effectively. As well as his own substantial experience and that of other amateur restorers, the author had the help of various TR specialists and professional restorers. These books, in their separate forms, have been around for years and are the go-to reference works on the subject of the TRs. To be clear, this is not a shop manual or handbook. To carry out any significant maintenance or repair on your TR you will need to obtain one […]
The world’s biggest classic motor racing festival served up a stunning show of power at the annual Autosport International, staged at Birmingham’s NEC from 14-17 January. The Silverstone Classic teamed up with Classic & Sports Car magazine to create a very special showcase putting the spotlight on several of the mouth-watering race grids that will star on the action-packed racecard at this summer’s spectacular three-day extravaganza (29-31 July). Presented under the evocative ‘When We Were Kings’ banner, the prominent presentation at the NEC was one of the show’s major attractions, proving hugely popular with the sell-out numbers of visitors.
Editor’s Note: Our “expert of the auctions”, Bob Seidler, recently visited the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles and sent in this report. This was only after texting me far more photos than I can run and making me extremely jealous in the process. For all of us car buffs out there, be sure to add the Petersen Automotive Museum to your must-see list. Over the years, I had heard it was a pretty cool place, and I can now confirm…it is the best automotive viewing experience I‘ve ever had. While many of us have visited museums where the cars are lined up and little ID plates tell the basic facts, The Petersen takes visitor engagement to a new level. Lots of detail and the cars are displayed in a manner that you can walk around them. Most are on […]
McLaren GT announced at the Autosport International show the formation of the McLaren GT Driver Academy. Alex Fontana (23) from Switzerland and Jersey-born Struan Moore (20) join Northern Irish 2015 McLaren GT Young Driver Andrew Watson (20). All three drivers already hold a wide variety of single seat and GT experience, and the Driver Academy will see them work closely with the team at McLaren GT, including Factory Drivers Rob Bell, Alvaro Parente and Bruno Senna, as they look to establish a successful career in competitive global GT racing. Following the successful debut season of the Young Driver Programme which saw Andrew Watson and Ross Wylie gain valuable experience both on track with customer teams and at the Woking factory throughout last season, the programme has evolved in to a wider reaching Academy designed to offer greater benefits to a […]
The Jaguar XE sports saloon triumphed in Euro NCAP’s prestigious Best in Class Cars of 2015 awards, coming first in the large family car category. The XE has already received the maximum five star rating from Euro NCAP against 2015’s highly demanding test protocols. In awarding the XE with best in class honours, Euro NCAP praised the high levels of active and passive safety systems fitted to the XE as standard. “We set out to develop the driver’s car in the segment, but also we wanted to provide outstanding levels of occupant and pedestrian safety. By combining our Advanced Aluminium Architecture with the most advanced technology available we were able to meet all of our targets. The XE has already proven itself the benchmark for vehicle dynamics, and now this Euro NCAP award is recognition that we delivered on safety […]
MINI USA announced pricing Thursday on its all-new 2016 MINI Convertible with a Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of $25,950 for the Cooper model. In addition, the company also introduced the fastest, most powerful convertible it has ever built, the new MINI John Cooper Works Convertible. As one of the newest additions to the MINI product line, the new MINI Convertible represents the first open top MINI powered by BMW Group engines. The premium four-seater soft-top convertible is both practical and customizable, delivering unlimited open-air motoring fun. The latest generation convertible, which was designed, engineered, developed, and assembled in Europe, starts only $250 higher than previous generation car, making it the only true convertible built in Europe priced below $26,000. The Cooper S variant will start at $29,600. All prices exclude the $850 Destination & Handling fee.
Note: This week we are very pleased to have a piece from John Twist of University Motors on the dangers of ethanol, or alcohol, in modern gasoline. Those of us who drive classic British cars, especially ones with original fuel system components, need to be aware of what modern fluids can do to our rides. We appreciate John letting us reprint this article from his most recent newsletter. “Nearly all of the gasoline sold in the United States contains 10 percent ethanol, which can safely be used in all of today’s gasoline-burning cars and trucks.” (From http://www.ucsusa.org) The operative word is “today’s.” Ethanol is a cleaner burning fuel than gasoline. It is created from biomass, especially corn. Arguments rage about the true environmental impact of growing corn to create ethanol versus drawing crude oil from wells and then refining it. But […]
Bentley Team M-Sport will return to Mount Panorama in Australia next month (5-7 February) to take on the Bathurst 12 Hours with two Continental GT3s in the team’s new 2016 livery that was unveiled at the Autosport International Show today. Bentley Boys Guy Smith (GB) and Steven Kane (GB) will once again be joined on the mountain by Matt Bell (GB), and Andy Soucek (ES) and Maxime Soulet (BE) will welcome Aussie V8 star David Russell (AU) to their team.
The Lotus 3-Eleven is the most powerful road car to wear a Lotus badge and Hethel’s quickest ever road car. It joins the ranks of those rare cars that can reach 60 mph in under three seconds and 100 mph in six seconds. To complement these figures, the Lotus 3-Eleven possesses a purity of the driving experience and the benchmark handling for which all Lotus cars are renowned, enabling a lap of the challenging Hethel circuit to be completed in 1 minute 19.5 seconds for the Race version. Jean-Marc Gales, CEO of Group Lotus commented ”The Lotus 3-Eleven is a game-changing car, not only in terms of what has come before it from within our own rich heritage of sports cars, but also in terms of anything else comparable brought to market by any other manufacturer. Extreme, focused and phenomenal […]
Our video this week is a great period piece celebrating the Chimney Rock Hillclimb which ran in North Carolina for approximately four decades. The Chimney Rock Hillclimb was the most legendary hillclimb in the South. Held in Chimney Rock, North Carolina, it was a rite of spring for both drivers and spectators. Beginning in 1956 when sports cars and sports car racing was still in its infancy, the climb challenged Triumphs, Jaguars, MG’s and their drivers to a high-speed rollercoaster ride that scared even the most fearless. With two miles of hairpins and switchbacks and trees for guard rails, it was an event to behold. Sadly the challenge to the mountain came to an end as a result of “changing times”. In 1995 “the Rock” fell asleep again. To quote the Chimney Rock website … Engines roared. Tires […]
Already the class benchmark for driving dynamics and driver engagement, the All-New Jaguar XF will, in 2016, offer an even greater breadth of dynamic ability. For the first time, Jaguar’s business saloon offers all-wheel drive (AWD) together with a four-cylinder diesel engine – the clean, refined, 180PS 2.0-litre Ingenium unit. This combination will offer customers exceptional fuel efficiency together with enhanced all-weather traction and performance. Jaguar’s torque on-demand AWD system features Intelligent Driveline Dynamics (IDD) – a next-generation control technology developed entirely in-house. Launched in the F-TYPE AWD, IDD delivers rear-wheel drive character and agility but can transfer precisely the right amount of torque to the front axle when required, maximising the performance and dynamics benefits of the additional traction. The result is superb composure in even the most adverse weather conditions. “The all-new Jaguar XF is already established as […]
Enthusiasts seeking a balance of pure performance and affordability from every driving experience now have a fresh alternative from British manufacturer Avatar. The Devon-based track and race division of long-standing specialist car producer Marlin Sports Cars has developed the 250bhp 2.0 Ecoboost-engined Roadster to offer road and track day fans a responsive, involving, lightweight car that offers plenty of scope to adjust and upgrade during ownership. The first car will make its public debut at The Performance Car Show on 14-17 January 2016 (Hall 19, Stand 19215), held at the Birmingham NEC alongside sister show Autosport International. Eschewing the handling and styling compromises of transversally mounting the Ford 2.0 engine behind the driver, Avatar’s engineers mandated the race-substantiated longitudinal installation, driving the rear wheels through a proven Porsche Boxster five-speed gearbox. Underlining an emphasis on performance and commitment to offer […]
Rolls-Royce Motor Cars announced Monday that its 2015 sales were the second-highest ever recorded in its 112-year history. A total of 3,785 hand-built motor cars were commissioned by customers worldwide last year. Torsten Müller-Ötvös, CEO, said, “2015 was a year of tremendous challenge for the entire luxury industry. I am very proud of our success which was achieved against a backdrop of considerable global uncertainty. We have proven that our long-term strategy of globally balanced, sustainable and profitable growth is delivering and we have maintained our position as the world’s leading luxury manufacturer. I am quietly confident of a strong year in 2016.”
Caterham Cars has introduced the ‘S’ Pack and the wider-bodied S5 chassis as options for the fastest road car it has ever produced. The Seven 620 S is the mildly saner, more road-oriented sibling of the ballistic 620R and features comforts such as a full windscreen, hood and side screens, as well as leather seats. For the first time, the Seven 620 can also now be specified with the wide-bodied S5 chassis as an option costing £2,500. The S5 is wider and longer than the standard S3 chassis, providing an experience better suited for more generously-proportioned customers, with other benefits including added interior and luggage space and increased range thanks to a larger fuel tank. The 620S, priced at £44,995 (incl VAT) fully built, joins the 620R at the summit of the Seven range by harnessing the same 310bhp two-litre, […]
Well-known car designer Henrik Fisker filed civil extortion charges against Aston Martin. He says that the British luxury sports car manufacturer threatened to sue him if the sports car dubbed as the Force1, which resembles the DB10, makes its way to the Detroit Auto Show. As a countermeasure, Henrik filed a civil extortion lawsuit against the British carmaker asking for US$100 million for damages. Fisker is a recognized designer in the automotive industry. He served as BMW’s DesignWorks president before he was brought to Aston Martin. The British automaker only sold 400 cars per year during the mid-90s. By the time Fisker designed two cars for the British carmaker that made it to production, global sales have grown and the company sold 7,000 cars worldwide.
MINI UK is reporting a record sales year in 2015, with 63,581 full year registrations. The milestone represents MINI’s 6th year of consecutive growth in the United Kingdom, with vehicle registrations up 17.9 per cent on 2014, securing the brand 2.41 percent of the market. MINI 3-door Hatch remained the brand’s biggest selling model, closely followed by its 5-door sibling. In the first full calendar year of sales, 44,560 Hatch models were sold in 2015 (3-door Hatch 25,443, 5-door Hatch 19,117). MINI’s performance brand, John Cooper Works, also celebrated a record year following the June launch of MINI John Cooper Works Hatch. The fastest production MINI ever built with a 0-62 time of just 6.1 seconds, 1,487 John Cooper Works Hatch models were sold last year. Total John Cooper Works sales across the range increased 134 percent to 2,213 vehicles.
As the Christmas displays disappear, shoppers in London’s Knightsbridge are to be treated to the sight of a very special Aston Martin window display in Harrods, the world’s most famous luxury department store. Three stunning Aston Martin sports cars will take over the iconic Harrods storefront in a month-long celebration of the British marques’ ‘DB’ nameplate. Since their debut in the early 1950s, the ‘DB’ models offered by Aston Martin – named after Sir David Brown who bought Aston Martin in 1947 – have been synonymous with sophisticated grand touring and thrilling sports car performance.