sports cars

sports cars

  Sports Cars are engineered to go around corners and straight lines as fast as possible. They are usually expensive, dangerous and so much fun that everybody wants one. Owning a sports car is a gratifying experience but it will cost you money and back pain as they are usually expensive to maintain and not very comfortable. But who cares as they look like supermodels at the beach.

Yet another episode of Jay Leno’s Garage has hit the comedian’s YouTube channel and this one is all about the details. Jay and his Corvette -expert friend Mike McCluskey take a deep dive into the rare 1963 Chevrolet Corvette Sting Ray that Mike painstakingly restored to factory specifications. Everything from the radiator hoses to the flat-top bolt holding the master cylinder’s lid on tight are talked about.

As it turns out, the 21,000 1963 Sting Rays made were nearly hand-built and each car can almost be considered a concept car . The 1963’s parts differed so greatly from the previous generation that the designers and engineers essentially designed it as they went. Then in 1964, the car’s assembly process was smoothed out, making them easier to build. The ‘63’s hubcaps, for example, are comprised of 17 separate pieces rather than the single stamping piece used from ’64 on.

Besides the 1963’s rarity, especially for its one-year-only split-window design, the car also helped mark the beginning of fuel injection in American cars. Until that time, only a select few European cars came equipped with such a fuel delivery device. Jay’s particular Sting Ray is powered by a 327-cubic-inch small-block making 360 horsepower. That’s an output rating well beyond what other performance cars of the era were making.

Though it’s 22 minutes long, the video holds your attention with facts and interesting tid-bits that only make the C2 Sting Ray that much more special to today’s car culture.

BMW and Toyota are already working on a joint-venture hybrid supercar that’s rumored to be more powerful and faster than the already legendary Lexus LF-A . That’s plenty of news to get excited about, but it appears the collaboration is about to spawn yet another enticing product. According to CAR, the said companies are planning to develop a range of mid-engined sports cars to go against the Porsche 911 . Talk about big ambitions.

Codenamed Silk Road 2, the project includes a mid-engined two-seater for both brands that will reportedly hit the market as the BMW Z7 and the Lexus ZC/ZR in late 2018 or early 2019. Both sports cars will be developed at BMW BMW ’s headquarters in Munich and have 3.0-liter, inline-six engines fitted behind their seats. Aided by a pair of turbochargers, the mill is said to deliver between 400 and 500 horsepower. That’s right between the Porsche 911 Carrera S and the 911 Turbo .

Since sports cars are also about lightness, BMW will focus on reducing weight too. Word has it the aim is for the vehicle to tip the scales at around 3,637 pounds. Not bad considering other BMW or Toyota Toyota products, but certainly not enough against the 911. Both the 911 Carrera S and the 911 Turbo are lighter at 3,040 pounds and 3,538 pounds respectively. This will likely slow things down in the performance department, but four to five years are long way to go and many changes can occur.

Once they are ready to hit the market, the BMW Z7 and the Lexus ZC/ZR will retail for around €90,000 ($121,960 as of 6/12/2014), the report adds, which makes them cheaper than the Porsches they’re designed to challenge.

Also included in the project is a hybrid powertrain that will include a still unknown twin-turbo engine and an electric motor rated at around 150 horsepower. The drivetrain will also include a quick seven-speed, dual-clutch, high-performance batteries, composite brakes and active aerodynamics.

Click past the jump to read more about Toyota and BMW’s future "Project Silk Road 2."

Source: CAR

Things at Jaguar Land Rover have just gotten more interesting. The British car company has just announced its own skunk works department, called Jaguar Land Rover Special Operations. The new division is charged with making high performance and ultra luxury editions of standard production Jaguar and Land Rover products on a bespoke, individual level.

Much like BMW Individual, Special Operations will build vehicles to specifications outside the normal assembly line ordering guide. Customers can order their choice of colors, interior amenities, trim packages, and add-on accessories. The shop will also handle the company’s limited-edition collectables that run with small production numbers.

Even more, Jaguar Land Rover Special Operations will work on vehicle restorations and servicing with parts gathered through salvage or recreation of specialized historic parts. The Heritage Team already has their first major project lined up. You may recall the six lightweight E-Types we reported Jaguar is building from parts left over from the 1960s.

The operation will be led by John Edwards and overseen by Dr. Ralf Speth, Jaguar Land Rover’s Chief Executive. Paul Newsome, formerly of Williams Advanced Engineering, is heading up the team of designers and engineers under Edwards. In the media statement after the jump, Speth says the new Special Operations division was created in an effort to “reinforce the global reputation of both Jaguar and Land Rover in building exciting and desirable products.”

The Special Operations division will be located in the company’s new Technical Center, located in the West Midlands area of the UK, just outside the corporate headquarters and will employ some 150 team members.

Click past the jump to read more about Jaguar Land Rover’s new Special Operations Division.

The Renault -Caterham joint venture has officially been dissolved. It was a nice plan at first, but like a lot of nice plans, this one sputtered and died before anything great could come from it. The two sides decided on an amicable split two years after joining forces on what was initially planned as the rebirth of the Alpine brand. The companies were so dedicated at one point, they went so far as to co-found Société des Automobiles Alpine Caterham with the intention of launching a pair of similarly styled sports cars by 2016.

But somewhere along the way, the relationship between the two companies disintegrated. It even came to a point where disagreements on the development of the sports cars caused significant delays. So instead of soldiering on and squashing the tensions between the two sides, both companies chose to drop the project entirely and go their separate ways.

Renault has since acquired full ownership of Société des Automobiles Alpine Caterham and dropped "Caterham" from the official company name. Both companies are moving forward in building new sports cars but will do so independently.

A lot of people, including us, are understandably disappointed that the Renault-Caterham marriage didn’t work. It really had so much promise at the beginning. The thought of a shared sports car that incorporated the Renault Alpine A110-50 Concept had a lot of people in the industry at attention, wondering what these companies could create together.

Surprisingly, there are no hard feelings, as the two brands still plan to work together through "other forms of cooperation," but it doesn’t sound as exciting as building a sports car together.

Oh, well. So much for that.

Click past the jump to read more about Renault-Caterham’s joint venture.

Alfa Romeo’s arrival in North America has moved one step closer to becoming a reality after the Italian automaker announced the first 86 dealerships in the U.S. and Canada. The announcement is the latest piece of evidence that the company’s long-awaited return to North America will finally go on as scheduled.

All in all, 33 states in the U.S. will receive an Alfa Romeo dealership. Of those 33, California received the most number of dealerships at 12 with Texas a close second with 10 and Florida with nine. Other major auto markets also received a handful of dealerships, including Michigan (5), Ohio (4), Virginia (4), and Illinois (3). On the flip side, New York received only one dealership, which is a little surprising to say the least.

As for Canada, the entire country was given four dealerships, including two in Quebec and one for both Ontario and Vancouver.

Alfa Romeo is expected to announce more franchises later this year. But for now, these 86 dealers will get first dibs on selling new Alfa Romeo models in their market, including the 4C and the limited edition 4C Launch Edition .

Get ready, North America, Alfa Romeo is set to return!

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Alfa Romeo 4C.

The Speedster name has a long and illustrious history in the pantheon of Porsche . Since the 356 of the 1960s, the Speedster badge signified a gloriously fast, top-down driving experience that can’t be matched. With owners like Steve McQueen , the name carried weight and panache, but there are preciously few Speedster models in existence, as there very few models were made in each generation of Porsche. The 964 Speedster was only created for two years, 1989 and 1994 and less than 2000 were created between those two production runs.

With that signature, flat-six engine flooding the open cabin with noise, the driving experience of one these cars must be magical. The car was based on the new 964 Carrera 2 platform and boasted excellent driving dynamics.

There were few options or creature comforts available on the 964 Speedster, it had three pedals, and the air-cooled, 3.6-liter engine is naturally aspirated and high-revving.

Click past the jump to read more about the 1994 Porsche 964 Speedster.

Source: eBay

Lincoln has been struggling to get back on track and catch up to Cadillac for more than a decade now. But despite the company’s efforts to reinvents itself, things aren’t going as they should. And that’s why we’re not at all surprised to hear the luxury marque is planning yet another overhaul and a new batch of models.

The big news though is that Lincoln finally admitted it could borrow the brand-new platform underpinning the 2015 Mustang to add a sportier model to its lineup. Rumors about a Mustang -based Lincoln have been floating around since 2013, especially in regard to the next-generation MKS sedan .

"We know that we need to get into other segments with other vehicles," Lincoln head of marketing, sales and service Matt VanDyke told Edmunds, adding that the company "won’t rule out" a vehicle developed on the rear-wheel-drive platform sitting underneath the 2015 Mustang.

The representative didn’t go into specifics, but such a decision is likely to come as a result of the new "One Ford" strategy that advocates the sharing of platform and drivetrains within Ford Motor Co. All told, all Ford vehicle platforms are being considered to develop additional Lincoln automobiles.

Click past the jump to read more about Lincoln’s future Mustang-based model.

Source: Edmunds

The Lexus LF-LC Concept made quite an impact at the 2012 Detroit Motor Show . The coupe debuted with stunning looks and a rear-wheel-drive configuration motivated by a hybrid powertrain, making everyone fantasize about a more powerful and advanced successor to the almighty LF-A .

More than two yeas have passed and that scenario has yet to materialize, but rumors about the LF-LC’s purpose keep pouring in. A recent report coming from Japan, for instance, says the concept car won’t spawn a replacement for the LF-A, but a grand tourer that will bring the SC nameplate back to the Lexus range. The initial SC was discontinued in 2010 after only two generations.

If the report proves to be correct, the new SC will most likely benefit from the LF-LC’s carbon-fiber and aluminum construction, which means it will sit above the RC-F coupe in terms of performance. As far as styling goes, we expect the third-generation SC to blend cues from both the LF-LC Concept and the RC-F for a modern and aggressive result.

The production model will likely keep the aerodynamic and muscular shape of the concept car, but ditch the futuristic headlamps in favor of RC-like units. Slightly reshaped taillights and rear bumper are also imaginable, but expect the same spindle grille to dominate the coupe’s front end.

Engine-wise, Lexus is reportedly readying two distinct powertrains. A hybrid drivertrain combining gasoline and electric power will generate nearly 500 ponies, while the conventional 5.0-liter V-8 borrowed from the RC-F will send 475 horsepower to the rear wheels through Lexus’ 10-speed automatic transmission. Don’t get too excited though, the SC won’t show itself to the world before 2017.

Note: 2012 Lexus LF-LC pictured here.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2017 Lexus SC.

Source: CarsGuide

A hybrid version of the Toyota GT86 isn’t part of Toyota’s future plans, putting to rest rumors that the company could use the technology to offer a different, higher-performing version of the GT86. The decision to set aside a hybrid GT86 was reportedly made because it didn’t make sense from a business perspective.

Toyota marketing director Fabio Capano told Autocar that the Japanese automaker has no plans of building a hybrid GT86 despite company engineers admitting that the technology is already at an advanced stage of development. If there were a business case to be made for the vehicle, Toyota would think long and hard about green lighting it. But like most companies, Toyota wants to prioritize its time and money in pursuing other projects and a hybrid GT86 isn’t on top of its "to-do" list. So why even bother, right?

If demand for a hybrid Toyota GT86 doesn’t justify the time and effort, then why would Toyota build it in the first place? Additionally, The GT86 prides itself on being an affordable sports car with adequate power behind it. Launching a hybrid version of the model could end up cannibalizing sales of the base sports car and other future endeavors, like the return of the Supra .

Instead, Toyota is focusing on using its "advanced" hybrid technology on a car that’s more suited for it. The long-rumored sports car collaboration with BMW is one such car that could make the most of a hybrid powertrain.

Source: AutoCar

Well, it didn’t take long for the highly anticipated Porsche Cayman GT4 to hit the Nurburgring track at full speed. Spotted on Germany’s public roads for the very first time last month (check out the photos and video if you missed them), the upcoming Cayman GT4 is rapidly moving up on the development ladder.

Judging by the license plate, the prototype that left some serious skid marks on the Nordschleife is the same GT4 that made us drool back in May 2014. Not much has changed since then, so we’re looking at the same aerodynamic front bumper, 911 GT3 -like rear wing, and lightweight wheels. There are a few new details though. The red brake calipers mounted on the front discs are slightly larger, signaling that Porsche is still busy in finding the optimum configuration for this track-ready sports car .

Although the Cayman GT4 is still a couple of years away, we expect very little modifications to occur in the visual department. Both the bumper and the rear diffuser are pretty much finalized, with only a few nips and tucks to occur here and there. The rear wing, however, needs more adjustments before receiving its final production shape.

Porsche is still mum on the details, but earlier reports suggest the Cayman GT4 will have as much as 400 horsepower at its disposal. The ponies are likely to come from a hybrid powertrain and travel to the wheels through a PDK dual-clutch transmission. Hopefully, Porsche comes to its senses before the GT4 breaks cover and adds a three-pedal option.

Click past the jump to read more about the Porsche Cayman GT4.


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