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Highlights

Elemental RP1 Revealed

Elemental has revealed its new RP-1 road-legal track car ahead of a public debut at this weekend’s Goodwood Festival of Speed. According to the Surrey-based start-up, this open top, mid-engined two-seater will arrive early next summer and previews a “new generation of world class British sports cars”. The design centres on an exposed lightweight carbon-composite and aluminium tub, surrounded by front and rear body panels “shrink-wrapped” to cover the wheels and mechanical underpinnings. Power comes from a Ford-sourced 2.0-litre Ecoboost engine, tuned to 280bhp and paired to a six-speed sequential paddle shift gearbox. Customers with racing in mind can opt for a limited slip diff and alternative gear sets, although a reduced-weight track-focused model, featuring 999cc Honda Fireblade unit, is also available. Read more at: http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/car-news/goodwood-festival-of-speed-2014/87543/elemental-rp1-new-british-sports-car-revealed

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Classic Cars

Jaguar Heritage Gains Support

Octane Magazine is reporting that Jaguar Land Rover is to expand its Heritage division in what senior executives are referring to as a ‘complete change of mindset’ within the group, clearly aiming to emulate the success of Aston Martin Works and Ferrari Classiche. The revamped division will be based at Jaguar’s spiritual home, the Browns Lane factory site in Coventry, where production was based until 2005, when it moved to Castle Bromwich. The first of six ‘continuation’ Lightweight E-types is currently in build there, as revealed by Octane in May, but the buildings are now being equipped with service and restoration bays. These will allow owners of classic Jaguars to have their cars serviced, repaired and restored at Browns Lane. All classic Jaguars will be catered for, not just the traditional XKs and E-types, and there will be particular emphasis on […]

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Events

Portland All-British Field Meet

Billed as the largest British car gathering west of the Mississippi, the Portland All-British Field Meet regularly draws well over 800 cars for the weekend long event. This year the meet will be held Friday, August 29 through Sunday, August 31, 2014. The weekend kicks off with the Friday Welcome Party, followed by the Saturday car show, which includes a BBQ, a slalom competition, People’s Choice balloting, a Funkhana, a huge photo concours, a Best in Show designation and a Land Rover Adventure Ride sponsored  by the Pacific Coast Rover Club. Sunday’s activities include a Rallye, a swap meet and an off road excursion for registered Land Rovers. In conjunction with the event, SOVREN will be holding the Columbia River Classic vintage races. SOVREN, the Society Of Vintage Racing ENthusiasts, is a Seattle based non-profit racing organization with members throughout Washington, Oregon, […]

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Classic Cars

Are You Destroying the Value of Your Car?

Just received the latest e-newsletter from Charles Runyan of The Roadster Factory. In it there is an interesting bit about the value of classic British cars and the effect that the parts used in repairing and restoring them can have on those values. Of course Runyan has a vested interest in this because of his business, but I really do agree with him. With the value of all British cars rising, I believe that enthusiasts should buy parts based on quality rather than on low price. In fact, a letter was received from British Motor Heritage this week deploring the practice of selling Heritage products at discounted prices. John Yea, Director of BMH, believes that this lowers the value of the cars over time, and this writer agrees. There is a trend in the U.S. to sell lower-quality parts at lower […]

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Highlights

MG CS SUV Getting Naked in China

The best New spy shot so far of the MG CS SUV, showing the side and the real all-naked for the first time. Sporty lines and a sleek profile, but tires look awfully small. Debut of the MG CS is expected for the Chengdu Auto Show in September. Price will start around 120.000 yuan and end around 160.000 yuan ($19.000 – 26.000). Production cars stays close to the MG CS Concept that debuted on the 2013 Shanghai Auto Show. Engine chat: still a confusing picture here with many conflicting reports. Early on we heard the MG CS would be available with a 135hp 1.5 turbo and a 204hp 2.0 turbo, both mated to a 6-speed DCT. Recent reports in Chinese media revealed a much larger line of engines: 1.3, 1.4 turbo (developed with GM), 1.5, and the 1.5 turbo. The […]

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Auctions & Sales

1980 MG Midget Smashes Sales Estimates

An unregistered 1980 MG Midget with just 162 miles on the clock, fetched over £11,000 when it went under the hammer at Anglia Car Auctions on Saturday. The Vermillion red car sold for £11,025 well ahead of expectations that it might fetch between £7,000 to £9,000. “It was a very good sale – an exceptional price,” said Simon Whitmore, of Anglia Car Auctions (ACA), based at Beveridge Way, Hardwick Narrows Estate. “It had no reserve on it and the vehicle has never been registered.” Also up for auction the same day, but which failed to sell, was a 2001 Mercedes Benz S500L, purchased new by former England captain David Beckham and originally registered as Y3 DVB in June 2001. The car was up for sale with all manuals, service book and the original V5 bearing David Beckham’s name, with 117,000 […]

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Classic Cars

Head Island Motoring Concours Selects Jaguar as Honored Marque

The Hilton Head Island Motoring Festival & Concours d’Elegance, one of the nation’s largest and fastest-growing automotive and motorsports enthusiast event weeks, has selected Jaguar as the Honored Marque for the 2014 Festival. With nearly 80 years since the SS Jaguar name first appeared, the marque has far-reaching appeal and a wide breadth of history to feature at this year’s Festival, to be held October 24 – November 2. Both Motoring Festival venues will honor the contributions Jaguar has made to the automotive industry: Hutchinson Island’s The Westin Savannah Harbor Golf Resort & Spa (Savannah Speed Classic) and Hilton Head Island’s Port Royal Golf Club (Concours d’Elegance, Motoring Midway and Car Club Jamboree). “With a display of Jaguar racecars planned for this year’s Savannah Speed Classic and three classes of Jaguars to be displayed at this year’s Concours d’Elegance as […]

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Classic Cars

Mini Voted Best British Car Ever

A bit surprising considering the competition maybe, but Autocar magazine readers voted the classic Mini ahead of McLaren F1, Jaguar E-type and the Range Rover. And there is nary an MG, Triumph or Austin Healey to be found on the list. The poll also named Norfolk-based Lotus as the most popular British manufacturer, with seven of its models making the 100 best British cars list. Autocar brand editor Chas Hallett said: “It comes as little surprise that the original Mini has topped the list of all-time British greats. “It’s such an iconic vehicle and represents a lot more than the British car industry; the Mini is associated with Great Britain around the world and, in many ways, it was ahead of its time.” He went on: “Everyone loved and still loves an original Mini. It ensured a fabulous drive every time, […]

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Highlights

Celebrating the 90th Birthday of MG

Set to celebrate its 90th birthday annivarsary, The MG Car Company was founded in 1924 and got its name from Morris Garages, a dealer of Morris cars in Oxford which began producing its own customised versions to the designs of Cecil Kimber. The first cars, re-bodied Morris models, used coachwork from Carbodies of Coventry and were built in premises in Alfred Lane, Oxford. On May 1, 1924, the Octagon was registered as an MG trademark. The marque has come a long way since those early days, with the famous octagonal emblem recognised and celebrated around the globe. After several moves in Oxford, due to a growing demand for more cars to be produced, the MG moved to Abingdon and ever since the town has been the home of the MG. Arguably Britain’s favourite classic sports car reaches its 90th anniversary […]

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Aston Martin

Rare Aston Martin Auction

Seems to be the month of the Aston Martin, not that there is anything wrong with that. On 17 May, 2014, Bonham’s auction house will conduct a special auction of Aston Martin cars and related books, artwork and ephemera. There are some great items, and collectors are sure to turn out in force. Two examples include a special coachwork ’56 DB2/4 and a 1:8 scale model of the Aston Martin ‘DP214’ 1956 Aston Martin DB2/4 MKII fixed head coupe with coachwork by Tickford, Chassis no. AM300/1241, with a bid estimate of £160,000 – 200,000 (US$ 270,000 – 340,000). A 1:8 scale scratch-built model of the 1963 Monza winning Aston Martin ‘DP214’, built by Javan Smith, with a bid estimate of £1,800 – 2,200 (US$ 3,000 – 3,700).   Also on auction will be the Aston Martin DBS that featured in the British television […]

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Corporate Business

Aston Martin Platform Changes and 2013 Financials

Aston Martin has confirmed that it is working on a new platform to replace its venerable VH design, which debuted in the first-generation Vanquish at the start of the century. The new platform will underpin the British automaker’s next generation of sports cars and will be designed to fit new V-8 engines sourced from Mercedes-AMG. They also announced their 2013 finance, and it was a very good year. For the 12-month period ending December 31, 2013, Aston Martin managed to sell approximately 4,200 cars worldwide, an increase of 11 percent on the previous year, and its profits came in at £84.8 million (approximately $142.6 million), up a substantial 22 percent on levels a year ago. For full coverage of these announcements, you can check out the article at Motor Authority  as well as hitting Aston Martin’s own news site.

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Highlights

Trident to Launch Fast and Efficient Sports Cars

British sports car brand Trident is set to launch two new variants of its Iceni sports car–billed as the world’s fastest and most fuel-efficient diesel sports cars. The convertible, the fixed-roof Iceni Magna and the Iceni Venturer wagon use a 6.6-liter turbodiesel V-8 engine to deliver huge performance. Despite this, Trident says the Iceni offers “outstanding fuel efficiency”. At £96,000–just over $161,000, at current exchange rates–it isn’t cheap. It is similarly priced to the new BMW i8 plug-in sports car however, with similar performance and potentially, better economy at a cruise. And both cars are considerably thriftier than similarly-priced rivals. Are we entering a new age of low-consumption, low-emission sports cars? For further on this story, check out the full article at Green Car Reports.  

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Classic Cars

Heritage Motor Centre at Gaydon Awarded Grant

The British Motor Industry Heritage Trust, based at the Heritage Motor Centre at Gaydon, Warwickshire has been awarded a Round Two grant of £1.45 million from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for its Museum Collections Centre project, it was announced today. The award is the culmination of more than 2 years work to develop plans for a new building in which to store and display more than 200 historic British cars from the collections of both the British Motor Industry Heritage Trust and its partner the Jaguar Daimler Heritage Trust. The £4 million project received initial support from HLF in 2011, and the latest HLF grant, together with match funding from Jaguar Land Rover, The Garfield Weston Foundation and both Trusts, will enable work on this exciting new project to begin in the spring of 2014. The new Museum Collection […]

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Aston Martin

A Mercedes Takeover of Aston Martin?

Stories come and theories go, but according to the website Complex Rides, this one seems to have some teeth to it. Could it be that Mercedes will soon be driving Aston Martin? And with companies like VW and BMW taking control of other prime British marques, who can say it isn’t a valid supposition? To quote CR, “It all started  when Aston Martin announced that it would be using engines co-developed with AMG, using a lot of AMG technology in its next generation of cars. When this happened, Mercedes got to take home a five percent non-voting stake in Aston Martin. More deals were later struck for use of Mercedes’ next gen SL and SLK platforms, as well as for the GL’s platform for the upcoming Lagonda SUV. That’s in addition to the whole suite of Mercedes electronics, from active […]

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Highlights

Special Edition Morgan Plus 8 Speedster

Morgan Motor Car Company has announced a new special edition Plus 8 Speedster for delivery this summer. The new Morgan Plus 8 Speedster embodies all of Morgan’s core values and has been commissioned as part of a special line of vehicles to celebrate 100 years of vehicle manufacture at Pickersleigh Road. The Speedster, the latest evolution of the Plus 8, offers an even more invigorating driving experience inspired by a bygone era of stripped back, road going race cars. A 367 bhp 4.8 litre BMW V8 engine and a 6 speed manual or ZF 6 speed automatic gearbox propels the car from 0-62 in 4.2 seconds with a limited top speed of 148 mph. The latest in aluminium chassis developments ensure that its performance and road-holding will match its looks. The Speedster boasts a power to weight ratio to rival any […]

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All Marques

Highlands Motoring Festival, June 5-8, 2014

Beautiful Highlands, North Carolina, is gearing up for the return of the British at the Seventh Annual Highlands Motoring Festival. This year the Cars of Great Britain will be the Marque of the Year. These Brits will be welcomed with parties, movies, road rallies, and certainly, the Car Show.   Be sure to check out the Events page on the event’s website page that describes the activities. And while Cars of Great Britain, are the Marque, we also will welcome cars from all countries…USA, Germany, Italy, France, Sweden, just to name a few. The only restriction is the age of the vehicle must be 1989 or older. However, there is a Special Interest class that does not have the age restriction. However, this is for special production, and/or featured cars. (Details in the Classes webpage). As in past years, this […]

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Highlights

MG Dynamo – Electric Concept Car

The MG Dynamo, a new and all-electric city car concept, was unveiled today. The MG Dynamo is based on parent company SAIC’s Roewe E50 city car sold in China. The car was on display at an exhibit of current and future tech at the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders. The display has been timed to coincide with the Beijing motor show where the marque is celebrating its 90th anniversary. The Dynamo concept is said to encompass “the latest in design and engineering technology”. The car has been developed to assess demand for a small, electric MG in Europe. The concept was created by SAIC’s (Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation) design and technical centre at Longbridge. MG Motor UK hasn’t revealed any details about the drivetrain, but conjecture is that it is likely to be similar to Rowe E50’s. Launched in China in January 2013, this […]

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Highlights

New 2015 MINI Countryman Revealed

The all-new 2015 MINI Countryman has made an appearance ahead of its official debut at the 2014 New York Auto Show. The newest version of MINI’s Countryman will sport its traditional four-door styling with a large tailgate, seating for five and optional all-wheel drive. Following in the footsteps of the new MINI Cooper, the Countryman’s styling has been freshened for a new generation and will be launching this July. The Countryman will be available in a variety models including the performance-oriented John Cooper Works variant. There will also be the Cooper and Cooper S versions with ALL4 all-wheel drive available as an option. Finally, the company will offer the MINI One, Cooper SD and Cooper D Countryman with optional ALL4. The base model will be powered by a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine with 121 hp while the S and JCW models […]

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Events

Pride of Longbridge Show A Success

This year’s Pride of Longbridge (POL) Rally in Cofton Park, Birminham on Saturday (April 12) was the best-attended in its nine year history after 2,800 people went along to the event. The annual event, which began after the collapse of MG Rover, saw hundreds of car enthusiasts from all over the country and even as far as Belgium and Holland bring a multitude of vehicles ‘back home’ to where they were built. Among the motors on show were everything from Minis, Metros and Allegros to Autin 7s, MGs and Rovers. Dave Coulson, who used to manufacture engines at the Longbridge plant, was there in his 1968 Austin Mini Cooper Mark II. The Mercia Minis club member told The Standard: “I was there for 21 years, so it’s like coming home.” John Collins and his aptly-named son Austin from Tamworth went to […]

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Highlights

MG3 Continues to Garner Accolades

Unfortunately we can’t get hold of one on this side of the pond, but elsewhere in the world the MG3 continues to rack up the good press. Let’s see – it is sporty, it is inexpensive, it has the MG bloodline, and it is hip. What more could you want? As this review from New Zealand states, “The chiseled wedge-profiled shape even has details along its rear panels that reflect the angles of the famous octagon badge, though the designers are to be congratulated for not slavishly putting that shape all over the car. “Sitting on standard 16 inch alloy rims, along with subtle dark grey sills, front splitter and vestigial hatch spoiler and covered in electric blue paint that seems wet it’s so glossy, the wee 3 looks a treat. “Up front its lazy-v shaped smile sucks on the […]