Kirby’s fascination with cars began when he first laid eyes on his first Micro Machine. At that time, he thought they were the coolest toys in the world, narrowly edging out those Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles action figures. Over time, his love for cars evolved to Matchbox cars and Burago models, then finally, it all became a reality when he bought his first ride — a 1998 Honda City — back in 2002.
His tastes and preferences on cars has changed over time, but his passion remains (as does his love for TMNT). Writing about his passions for Top Speed has been the closest thing to a dream job this side of being a Ferrari test driver.
First question is will the seventh movie continue or will the whole franchise be sent to the archives? If it is going to continue, how will writers address his death in a manner that wouldn’t hurt the movie and more importantly, would pay respects to the man who has been the cornerstone, along with Vin Diesel, of the entire franchise?
Well, according to The Hollywood Reporter, Fast & Furious 7 will go on as planned, except that it will come with a lot of revisions to the original script. The changes center around how to give Walker’s character, Brian O’Connor, the proper send-off and doing it in a manner that can be tied into the movie. It’s a task that’s far easier said than done, but Chris Morgan, the man who penned the movie’s first script, is already working on all the rewrites and if everything goes according to schedule, production of the movie will reopen sometime in January
There’s still a strong possibility that the scenes Paul Walker was able to shoot will still be used, making such a dramatic transition that much more important in the grand scheme of things both for Walker’s legacy and that of the Fast & Furious franchise.
Click past the jump to watch first six trailers of all the Fast & Furious movies that have been made
The BMW M3 and the M4 Coupe are understandably getting all the attention today, but BMW is quick to point out that those aren’t the only two models that it’s proudly showcasing.
A special-edition BMW Z4 is also getting some love ahead of its debut at the 2014 North American International Auto Show . The model is called the Pure Fusion Edition and while it lacks in any kind of noticeable exterior changes, it does showcase the company’s new Pure Fusion Design equipment package, which is all sorts of incredible if you’re the type to enjoy your luxury with plenty servings of sportiness to go with it.
That, essentially, is what BMW is trying to sell with the Z4 Pure Fusion Design. You get your sports car in full blast and add a special interior that has more leather than you’d expect.
Kudos to Bimmer for killing two birds with one stone. It’s cars like this that can really draw interest back to an aging model, like the Z4.
Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 BMW Z4 Pure Fusion Design
It may have taken longer than a lot of people would have liked, but that’s the price you pay if you’re a company that’s looking to break ground in a racing series it hasn’t entered since 2003..
After a year of testing and development, Hyundai has finally pulled the covers off of the i20 World Rally Championship racecar. And if we do say so ourselves, it looks positively glorious.
The unveiling happened at a recent event in Frankfurt when the Hyundai Shell World Rally Team officially announced that it had finally wrapped up the project in time for next season’s WRC season. Lead driver, Thierry Neuville, was given the honor of presenting the car with teammate Juho Hänninen serving as the driver of the second vehicle.
Earlier this year, Hyundai presented an updated version of the racecar at the Geneva Motor Show yet it was clear that the show car at the event was still a long ways away from being completed. This one, though, is the final product, and it comes complete with all the cursory aerodynamic modifications set to rally specifications, not to mention a cavalcade of graphics and liveries that show all of the team’s partners for next year’s WRC season.
Updates to the chassis and suspension were of importance for the team, seeing as it will be tackling a racing series that will feature its share of bumpy roads. There’s also a new rear wing, a front spoiler, and an interior that’s been redesigned specifically for rally purposes.
Based on our estimates, the 2014 Hyundai i20 WRC racecar is likely to receive a 1.6-liter, in-line-four engine that produces close to 300 horsepower, which should be good enough to hit 60 mph in five to six seconds to go with a top speed of about 160 mph.
Click past the jump to read about the previous incarnation of the Hyundai i20 WRC, the one that we saw at Geneva last March
Despite the economic downturn in some parts of the world, there are just some brands that appear immune to these things. Ferrari is one of them and if its new prized beauty — the 458 Speciale — is any indication, it still has no problem selling out its models quickly.
According to a report by Australia’s Motoring, the Italian automaker has already closed the books for the entire production run of the 458 Speciale units in its first year. What that means is if you were planning to have your name added to the order books, you’re going to have to now wait at least a year to do it.
That news doesn’t really come as a surprise, especially for a car that pretty much is a better version of the 458 Italia . And that supercar has been selling remarkably well for Ferrari. It’s lighter, faster, and more powerful than any car Ferrari has ever built outside the F12Berlinetta and the LaFerrari .
So it figures that with these credentials, the 458 Speciale was going to attract tremendous attention, even if the price tag for a model hits at $300,000. That’s the price people pay for awesomeness, and apparently, there are more than enough people willing to hand over that amount for a chance to own a piece of Maranello’s finest.
Click past the jump to read more about the Ferrari 458 Speciale
At the 2013 Geneva Motor Show, McLaren unveiled the latest addition to its lineup: the new P1 supercar. Now, the company announced plans to unveil a new sports car each year. The first to arrive will be placed under the current MP4-12C . Codenamed "P13," this new sports car will be a little bit more practical than the 12C; "practical" meaning it will have a trunk, of course.
The new P13 will take aim at the Porsche 911 and models like it, and McLaren will price it a little under $200k. While no significant details have been revealed, it is rumored that the upcoming P13 will be powered by a de-tuned version of the twin-turbo V-8 engine used in the 12C. We expect an output somewhere in the 500-horsepower area. On the outside, the P13 will feature design elements seen on the recently unveiled P1.
The new P13 will arrive in 2014, and McLaren hopes to to sell around 2,000 to 2,500 units per year globally.
Update 11/12/2013: We have created a rendering of the upcoming P13. Click past the jump to read more about the P13 and the rendering.
Update 12/11/2013: We’ve updated this review with the first batch of details (including an official teaser sketch) from McLaren. Click past the jump to read more about the P13 and the new details that have been disclosed.
In true BMW fashion, the German automaker decided that a nice little teaser video would do well enough to drive up the anticipation leading up to the online unveilings of both models.
Well, Mission accomplished, BMW.
The video itself doesn’t give us a close look at the two models, only a creative strobe lights effect that shows the silhouettes of both models. It wasn’t much at the end of the day, but it was enough to make us all geeked up to see if Thursday really is the day that the next generation M3 Sedan and the M4 Coupe finally make their world debuts, albeit in a virtual setting.
Click past the jump to read about the 2014 BMW M3 Sedan and the 2014 BMW M4 Coupe
With all of the teasers we’ve been seeing the past few days, it’s easy to drown in all of the intrigue and suspense.
But this particular teaser really caught our attention, in part because we’ve heard next to nothing about the company that sent it out.
We checked Godsil Motorcars’ website and didn’t see a whole lot to give us any reason to believe that its been around for a while. But here they are, promising to build a line of "super luxury cars " that it will "bring glory back to the automobile – one Manhattan at a time."
That in itself is about an apt description as you can have for this mysterious model. It’s called the Manhattan and its going to be powered by a V-16 engine that will run on compressed natural gas , enough to make the industry stand up and take notice. But Godsil isn’t making any apologies, in part because it wants to make a statement. And what better way to do it than to drop a massive 16 on the engine block and let all those horses do the talking.
As far as the car itself is concerned, the teaser does give us hints that it will be a two-seat coupe with a sloping roofline, a long hood, and muscular wheel arches. We’re tempted to say that there’s a retro-feel to it, but until we see more of its dimensions, we’re holding off on that assumption.
What we can tell you though is that Godsil definitely has our attention. Then again, that’s par for the course for any company promising a V-16 engine on a car that definitely looks like it can back up all the hype.
Click past the jump to read about one of the few cars today packing a 16-cylinder engine, the Bugatti Veyron
When Venturi , the company that brought us the VBB-3 , announced its plans to enter the 2014 Formula E Championship with Hollywood A-lister, Leonardo DiCaprio, by its side, it not only added some much needed star power to the young racing series, but it also brought in another team that will compete in the series’ inaugural season next year.
The addition of the Venturi-DiCaprio team meant that a total of five constructors have now signed up for the series, which is scheduled to have its first ever race in Beijing, China on September 13, 2014.
Having DiCaprio as part of the Venturi team is important on a lot of facets. For one, his involvement will undoubtedly give the series a household name that it can attach itself to in order to attract mainstream fans and media alike.
It also validates DiCaprio’s commitment and reputation as one of the foremost proponents of eco friendliness. "The future of our planet depends on our ability to embrace fuel-efficient, clean-energy vehicles," the Gatsby star said.
"Venturi Grand Prix has shown tremendous foresight in their decision to create an environmentally friendly racing team, and I am happy to be a part of this effort.”
But the most important aspect of Venturi’s entry to Formula E means that the roster of constructors that are joining the series is growing and it has some pretty highly regarded teams. More are expected to announce their plans of joining Formula E in the coming months, and judging by the teams that have already confirmed their participation, we’re confident that more auto brands will join in sooner than later.
Click past the jump to read a primer for the 2014 Formula E season
For those looking to own a piece of a supercar without having to burn their pockets, a new Canadian kit-car manufacturer may have the answer.
Dubuc Super Light Cars, a straightforward name for a company if there ever was one, has officially unveiled the Tomahawk, a mid-engine kit car that looks the part of a sports car, albeit one that comes in a 2,000-pound package.
According to Dubuc SLC, the Tomahawk will come with a lightweight polymer body and a 300-pound aluminum monocoque. Both components have been bonded and bolted together, ensuring that the car’s overall dimensions aren’t compromised by the infusion of the two parts.
From there, prospective customers will have the choice of dropping any type of engine they want on the bay, including a gas engine or an electric motor. The suspension setup was developed using components from a C4-generation Chevrolet Corvette .
Owing itself to looking like a bonafide sports car , the Tomahawk also comes with a number of sporty components, highlighted by doors that actually open at a 75-degree angle. Even as a kit car, this bad boy also has door panels, an ergonomically-designed cockpit, a dashboard, console seats, a see-through Targa roof, side mirrors, and a DOT-approved windshield.
Given the dimensions of the cockpit, Dubuc SLC says that the Tomahawk can accommodate a wide range of body types, even somebody who’s 6’3" and weighs 275 pounds.
The Dubuc SLC is scheduled to make its debut at the Montreal International Auto Show this coming January. Once it goes on sale, the body and the frame kit will be priced at CAD$19,995, which is a little under USD$19,000 based on current exchange rates. All in all, the price for a complete bid is estimated to be around CAD$30,000, or somewhere in the USD$ 28,000 range.
Click past the jump to see more of this kit in detail
Lightweight, track-ready sports cars have turned into its own market these days, so much so that more and more companies are coming out with their own versions. We’ve seen a number of them in recent years, including the Ariel Atom , the KTM X-Bow, and heck, even the Flip Car from Fast & Furious 6.
Recently, two companies are joining in on the fun, and they’re preparing a car that will pack a chest-caving punch.
The companies are Palatov Motorsport and Sector 111 and their mission is to build an 1,800-pound sports car that will not only make use of an emissions-compliant, V-8 engine, but do so while also producing 430 horsepower. Using Palatov Motorsport’s D2 racer as the base car, the vehicle, which has been coined "Project Dragon," is being developed with the purpose of turning it into a full-fledged pocket rocket that can give its more esteemed competitors a serious run for their money.
Other than their ambitious plans and stated goals, both Palatov and Sector 111 are keeping tight-lipped on the progress of Project Dragon. Rest assured, though, the two are serious are about this project, and with Sector 111 having some experience in building the US-market BAC Monos, this project figures to gain more traction in the coming months.
Someday, we’ll probably see Project Dragon get an official name and someday, we might even see it go toe-to-toe with the Atoms and X-Bows of the world. Like everybody else, that’s a day we can’t wait to see.
Click past the jump to read about the Palatov D2 Race Car