Underground Racing has one of the most illustrious track records when it comes to twin-turbocharging Lamborghini’s and it’s little wonder why. In top tune, they can extract upwards of 2,000 horsepower from the Gallardo’s 5.0/5.2-liter V10 engine. As a result, their cars are some of the fastest in the world as demonstrated by the videos above and after the jump.
However, that’s not the route a 1,500AWHP TTG went in a run at the recent Unlim 500+ event where top speed was the aim of the day. Running up the perfectly straight road which stretches for in excess of one mile, this incredible Gallardo Nera managed to top out at 251mph just past the 1 mile mark. It also hit 240.84 mph just a few seconds earlier and completed the one mile run in just 23.861 seconds.
Thankfully, the whole run was captured in an array of impressive camera shots and we have both of these videos which really show just how impressive this car is. In the second video at the 55 second mark, you’ll see the driver kicking the car into 6th gear before the 251mph run was reached just 5 seconds later, suggesting that this car could go even further if its aerodynamics were improved further, there was more road to continue, and if the driver was brave enough to keep pushing it.
Nevertheless, this is a truly incredible achievement so check out the videos!
When Fiat announced that it would release the 500 Abarth in Chrysler dealerships across the U.S., they initially built just 1,000 examples. Yeah, that wasn’t enough, as the preliminary orders alone exceeded 1,000 units, so Fiat upped the number to 3,000 units. It looks like that wasn’t quite enough either, as Chrysler has shut off the ordering system for 2012 500 Abarths due to the factory in Mexico not being able to handle any more orders for this model year.
According to The Detroit News, there are still some Abarths in dealerships around the country sitting around as demos or cancelled orders. So this means that you may still be able to snag up a 2012 model, but it won’t be built to your requests. You would have to settle for what it comes with straight from the dealership’s floor.
Per Fiat’s website, there are zero 500 Abarths available throughout the country, but old faithful AutoTrader shows us that there are 205 listed on its site from all around the country. We wouldn’t be shocked if the majority of those are just baited hooks, in order to get a customer in so the dealer can say “Aw, we just sold that this morning, but we can take a deposit on a 2013 model.” If you have worked at a dealership before, you know exactly what we’re talking about.
If you are patient, you can just wait until September to order up a new custom fitted 500 Abarth, so there is no need to accept a model that doesn’t meet your needs. Just make sure you get in early to beat the rush that we all expect there to be for this model year.
Almost everyone has worked for a faceless corporation before. Part of working for a faceless corporation typically includes going through a ridiculous training program in your first week, or so, that really has very little to actually do with the job you will be doing. The majority of these training programs get slept through or totally skimmed over just to get through it.
Well, GM is taking a new approach to training its engineers and it is one where they will actually learn something that will benefit them in their jobs. GM is placing newly hired engineers on various racing teams that the company sponsors in hopes of these youngsters learning the ins and outs of a racecar.
In the automotive repair world, you learn that former racecar mechanics typically make the best repair technicians, so we would figure that the same would ring true for engineers. Working on a racecar is like seeing a car go from 0 miles to 250,000 miles in a single race, thanks to the amount of stress these things endure. Learning how to maximize the lives and quality of these racecars, while keeping costs minimal and working on a tight deadline, is something that these engineers can transfer directly into the Impalas, Malibus, and Lacrosses we all drive.
Fortunately for the incoming engineers, there are plenty of race teams available to choose from, as GM has stake in eight major racing circuits, including: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, NASCAR Nationwide Series, NASCAR Truck Series, Grand-Am Road Racing, NHRA, SCCA Pro Racing World Challenge, American Le Mans Series and Indycar.
Unfortunately, GM can’t take all of the credit for this innovative idea, as Honda’s been doing it for many years now. Regardless of who got there first, we have to give GM a lot of credit for taking their quality so seriously.
We all hate what Chevy did to the Monte Carlo following its axing after the 1988 model year. 1988 was the final year for the “Manly” Monte, if you can call a 180-horsepower 5.0-liter V-8 “Manly.” Most of its testosterone came from its throaty V-8 exhaust note and relatively edgy look, when fitted with the SS package.
In 1995, the Monte Carlo essentially came back as a two-door version of the Lumina. It was fattened to extreme proportions in 2000, as Chevy attempted to make this neutered muscle car somewhat resemble its earlier muscular years without adding any real muscle to it. Apparently, some people see these circa-2000 Monte Carlos as disposable machines, as one man decided to turn his into a V-6-powered missile, then launching it into General Motors’ headquarters, also known as the Renaissance Center for a reason unknown to us.
According to reports by witnesses, the driver, donning all black clothing, lined up the car perfectly with the revolving front door. After sitting there for a short period of time, the driver punched the gas on this flabby, 180-horsepower coupe and smashed into the revolving front door. GM was likely pretty happy that the driver chose this car as his weapon of choice, as its 8-second 0-to-60 mph time greatly limited the damage done and the automotive giant expects the damage to be as good as new in just a day.
There is no motive yet behind the kamikaze Monte Carlo driver, but the police do have the suspect in custody and are questioning him. With the craziness that is happening these days, the possible motives are endless. We’ll let you know why exactly this man chose to plow his beloved Chevy into GM’s headquarters once we learn the motive.
Not too long ago, we reported on how Wolfgang Durheimer, the former head of Bentley and Bugatti, would be leaving his role as CEO of these two companies under the VW branch and instead moving onto bigger and better things at Audi as part of a reshuffle to help reduce the average age of VW’s board members.
Just a couple of weeks later, we can confirm that an individual has been found to take over Durheimer’s old role as the boss of Bentley and Bugatti, with Wolfgang Schreiber recently being selected. This role change will put Schreiber into a vastly different role than his previous role in the VW group, as he’s currently the head of Volkswagen’s commercial vehicles unit, so it’s clear that the speed and luxury of Bentley and Bugatti will test him.
The changes will take effect on the 1st of September this year, meaning that Durheimer will remain at Bentley and Bugatti for the coming three months where Bugatti is said to be developing the new Galibier sedan, while Bentley is busy at work turning its EXP 9 F SUV concept into a production reality.
These changes co-inside with Volkswagen’s ambitious ‘Strategy 2018,’ where the group hopes to surpass General Motors and Toyota for the coveted title of ‘World’s largest automobile manufacturer’, leading the VW’s head Martin Winterkorn to say, “Our clear goal is to continue our successful course of recent years with great momentum and stability. I am convinced that now more than ever, the Volkswagen Group has the right people in the right positions to make our Strategy 2018 a success.”
A report indicates that there are some major shakeups coming in Volkswagen Automotive Group in 2018 and it appears as if those changes are already beginning. Audi North America’s CEO, Johan De Nysschen, a man who once reportedly called the Chevy Volt a “car for idiots,” has resigned from the company that he has worked at for the past 20 years, 7 of which were in the CEO role.
It is unknown as to whether this move was forced, mutual, or if De Nysschen resigned on his own accord, but a company spokesperson is quoted saying “He is moving to another job, we believe it’s in the industry.” By that statement, we would assume the move was initiated by De Nysschen. Also, given the growth that Audi has seen during his reign would lead us to believe that Volkswagen AG would have kept him on board as long as he wanted.
Then again, the automotive industry is a weird one where one minor difference in opinion can ultimately cost you a job. In the meantime, Audi’s COO, Mark Del Rosso, will be the interim CEO while the company searches for a replacement to help reach Audi’s goal of competing more closely with BMW and Mercedes-Benz.
Interestingly enough, Audi wasted absolutely no time taking De Nysschen’s CEO profile down from its site, leaving a “Page Not Found” message where his proud image once sat.
Audi’s statement that De Nysschen would be heading to another company in the industry was 100 percent accurate, as we received word that he has signed up with Nissan. His new title is Senior Vice President of Nissan Motor Company in charge of the Infiniti division. His first task at hand is one he is rather familiar with, sharply increasing sales and guiding the luxury automaker deeper into developing markets, starting in China.
Best of luck to Mr. De Nysschen and we have a feeling that VW and Audi will be missing him in the coming years.
In addition to Ferrari being adversely affected by the recent tremors near and around its Italian production facility, which has led the company to begin a massive online auction, the earthquake has also had numerous effects on Ferrari’s biggest rival, Lamborghini as the initial earthquake on May 20th, and the subsequent aftershocks following, were centralized near Lamborghini’s home in Sant’Agata Bolognese.
So, do you want the good news or the bad news first? Well, we will give you the bad news first anyway.
Unfortunately, production of the Aventador has been affected by the earthquakes as Lamborghini recently revealed some of its key suppliers were also impacted by the quake and as a result, have had to either slow down production of relocate the production of specific Aventador components and this is likely to have a flow on effect for the production line producing the brand’s flagship supercar.
But out of this doom and gloom comes some great news, as we all know that every cloud has a silver lining and in Lamborghini’s case, that silver lining is production of the Gallardo not being interrupted at all by the quake. The Gallardo’s production facility managed to escape any damage and suppliers have not been affected either, so that’s all good news.
Additionally, Lamborghini confirmed that it’ll be doing its part to help out the local community affected by the earthquake revealing that the company is going to provide some financial support for education in the region after five laboratories were severely damaged.
In line with McLaren Automotive’s massive expansion across the globe, which includes the construction of more than 30 dealerships, the British brand recently opened its latest showroom in the Middle East with McLaren Abu Dhabi. Now they are celebrating the occasion with the release of another video promoting the MP4-12C and the firm itself.
Mark Harrison, McLaren’s Automotive Regional Director of the Middle East and Africa, stated: “We wanted to produce this video to highlight our presence across the Middle East and reaffirm our commitment to establishing our brand in the region. The 12C is as comfortable on the road as a premium sedan, yet faster than any competitor car in its segment and this excellent video shows this fact; capturing the beauty of the desert, the emotion of the urban environment and the drama of a world famous Formula 1 circuit – three locations where the 12C is supremely confident.”
Don’t for one second, however, think that this was a poorly executed marketing scheme by McLaren as its team actually invested thousands into the production of this 5 minute long video, even utilizing the latest in RED camera technology which captures images in four times the resolution of High Definition.
McLaren Abu Dhabi is now the fourth McLaren retailer in the Middle Eastern region, and the remaining two will be completed by years end. So all up, the wealthy upper class in the Middle East will have access to McLaren Bahrain, McLaren Doha, McLaren Dubai, McLaren Jeddah, McLaren Kuwait, and of course, McLaren Abu Dhabi.
It’s currently unclear how many orders have been placed for the MP4-12C in these regions, but it’s clear that McLaren is targeting this area for its sole model as well as all the additional models it has planned, including the McLaren MP4-27.
The Audi, Mercedes-Benz, and BMW rivalry has always existed, but has rarely ever been as fierce at it his right now. Not only are all three manufacturers competing in DTM racing for the first time in history, but the three are also jostling over the Chinese market in order to become the country’s largest manufacturer of luxury vehicles.
With Volkswagen confirming its plans to help increase the popularity of Audi in China, BMW has announced that it plans to triple output across its Chinese production facilities to 300,000 units annually in line with the opening of the new Tiexi production facility. This facility will soon start production of the
X1 in the coming weeks.
However, not everything coming out of this announcement is positive as there’s a risk BMW could be putting too much faith into the Chinese market and risk overdependence on its sales in order to boost profit levels.
A research analyst from Frost & Sullivan pointed out that, “There are no other regions that can provide for such massive numbers of sales as China can,” he said. “In the event of economic turmoil in China, most German automakers could end up with hundreds of thousands of unsold cars.”
Just like most economies operate, China faces its fair share of good and bad patches and right now the Chinese economy is booming which can only mean one thing. If the U.S. and the Eurozone are anything to go by, China’s growth may slump in the next few years and this would obviously hamper European firms entering the market.
Conversely however, Audi and Mercedes-Benz will also be in similar boats if it all goes bottoms up but for BMW’s sake we wish them all well with this expansion.
Prior to his death, ex-TVR owner, Peter Wheeler, decided that despite the fact that he no longer owned TVR, he still had the fire to build wild and crazy cars. From that fire began the project that he dubbed the Scamander, which is named after the Greek river god. This amphibious machine came to life just before Wheeler’s death, but it was a very rough machine that still needed a lot of work to be perfect.
After his death, Wheeler’s wife and a group of engineers completed Wheeler’s project and made it into something that Wheeler would have been proud of. This RRV, as Wheeler called it, has a V-6 turbocharged engine that cranks out about 300 horsepower and is said to hit 60 mph in eight seconds. To boot, it has an impeller on its rear end for propulsion in the wet stuff. This impeller certainly beats the rear wheel-mounts paddles that were on the original prototype Scamander.
Image note: The images provided are of the concept version of the Scamander.