Among the eminence of the automotive celebutante of the 2018 Goodwood Festival of Speed, a number of strange cars and unusual record-breaking efforts took place.

Porsche, Land Rover, Volkswagen, and McLaren took the show by a storm, but that hill climb, and the estate as a whole, saw so many oddities and extremes. I had to pick at least five of the best.

The Apollo Intensa Emozione

5 of the Weirdest Cars at the 2018 Goodwood Festival of Speed
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The Apollo Intensa Emozione is a phenomenon risen from the embers of the Gumpert company.

A lot of weird, unusual and extreme points can be made about this one. The Apollo Intensa Emozione is a phenomenon risen from the embers of the Gumpert company. Developed in conjunction with HWA (people working with Mercedes-AMG - not shabby at all), the Apollo Intensa Emozione is a hypercar. Yes, it did run the hill climb, but it does not it even matter. This is a track thoroughbred with a 769 horsepower V-12 and visualities so extreme you may think it is just a Gran Turismo concept car. It’s not. This is the real deal with a cabon fiber structure and a red line of 9,000 rpm. With a V-12. Just imagine how that sounds.

Tipping the scales at 2,755 lbs, this extremely track-focused, alien-looking vessel can top 62 mph in 2.7 seconds and reach a top speed of 208 mph. Basically, it is the perfect counterpart to the McLaren P1. Maybe even that new one from Lanzante.

Its extreme looks aren’t there only for show, but for downforce as well. At 186 mph, it will produce an astounding 2986 lbs of downforce.

Price? $2.7 million. Only ten units are destined for production.

Read our full review on the 2018 Apollo Intensa Emozione.

The Vazirani Automotive Shul

It features a turbine-electric propulsion system coupled with a lightweight carbon fiber tub chassis and extreme looks to optimize aerodynamics

This is an Indian take on a hypercar. It features a turbine-electric propulsion system coupled with a lightweight carbon fiber tub chassis and extreme looks to optimize aerodynamics. This is the Indian way of teaching us what a car should be. And boy, if Vazarini has it their way, we would be lucky.

“Our battery pack weighs only about 300kg and it gives you the advantage of charging it on the go,” Vazirani official noted. “The battery is right behind the passenger and it also takes some space through the central tunnel, so the car has an optimum weight distribution.”

The car has been exhibited at the Michelin stand as the French tire company developed the tires for the car.

With four electric motors, one for each wheel, the Shul will be extremely capable. We do not have any exact numbers, but all the motors have single ratio gearboxes and power the car with a basically flawless torque vectoring system.

The Nio EP9

The electric Nio EP9 with one megawatt of power (1340ish horsepower) finished its hill-climb in astounding 44.32 seconds.

The Chinese Nio EP9 isn’t exactly all new. It is a car which slashed the Nurburgring record for electric cars by driving well under 6 minutes and 50 seconds. Now, at Goodwood, the electric Nio EP9 with one megawatt of power (1340ish horsepower) finished its hill-climb in astounding 44.32 seconds. Only 1.28 seconds slower than the fastest run of Volkswagen’s all-electric I.D. R. The EP9 is a halo car for the Chinese electric company NextEV. All of the planned production is, more or less, bought out by the investors of the company, but that is not the point. The point is that the all-wheel-drive Nio EP9 from China, which is a road-legal hypercar, is only a fraction slower than the best Volkswagen electric racer to date. It is purposely built for time attack at that.

On the other hand (or on the other side of the world really), the Nio EP9’s brother, the ES8 isn’t a supercar, but an electric SUV. The success of the EP9 made me learn about the ES8. That is the power of success and the power of producing a hypercar.

Think of it this way, how many of you knew where Croatia was before this World Cup?

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Well, the second fastest at the Goodwood FOS did much the same for the Nio within the car community, as the second best football team in Russia did for its home country of Croatia. It put them on the freaking map. Now, a Chinese guy who wants an electric SUV does not have to save for a millennium to buy the Model X, but can proudly buy a freaking ES8 knowing that it is produced by a company capable of extremes. Just as Volkswagen is. That is why we need hypercars and why they have to be the best. The Nio EP9 is one of the best. Period!

Read our full review on the 2019 Nio EP9.

The Aston Martin Cygnet V8

The sound produced by the tiny exhaust system is even more astounding than in the real Vantage S from which the Cygnet V8 has borrowed the engine

Yup, we had a whole story on this tiny blurb of fun and awesomeness, but as far as weirdness goes, the Cygnet V8 simply has to be included here. It is barely larger than a Smart Car with a freaking V-8 developing 430 horsepower under the bonnet. The wheelbase is so tiny I cannot even imagine how scary is to drive the thing on the streets, or at the track. It is just wrong, and at that, it is just great.

The sound produced by the tiny exhaust system is even more astounding than in the real Vantage S from which the Cygnet V8 has borrowed the engine and the suspension. Heck, the longer I think about it, the more I want to see it race that Honda Mean Mower V2 with a 200 horsepower engine. It is the same kind of mad.
This car is a revelation. It’s a type of a car one could dream about on an acid trip or something. The guy who actually commissioned it from Q by Aston Martin asked for race specifications. Imagine him racing the Cygnet V8 against a multitude of supercars and sports cars. It’s just nuts.

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This one-off is a really special type of a car. It is an engineering feat too, as Aston Martin engineers had to reimagine the engine bay for it in the tiny Cygnet, install a roll cage, a reservoir in the boot, and install a supershort prop shaft to spin the rear wheels. I can’t even imagine the problems they faced.

Read our full review on the 2018 Aston Martin Cygnet V8.

The Range Rover On Two Wheels Which Finished the Hill-Climb in Record Time

He drove for 1.16 miles on two wheels in an SUV Range Rover in 2 minutes and 24.5 seconds.

This is not an unusual car, but it definitely deserves to sit in the “weird” section. The driver Terry Grant managed to drive his Range Rover on two wheels up the Goodwood Hillclimb smashing the previous record by 30 seconds. Now, he drove for 1.16 miles on two wheels in an SUV Range Rover in 2 minutes and 24.5 seconds. This is an astounding achievement especially considering that he actually set that previous record too.

Terry Grant used a top-notch Range Rover SVR for the record attempt but only succeeded to smash the previous best time in his fifth stint up the hill. Last week, he had four unsuccessful runs before, finally, getting it right. The tires were specially prepared for this kind of a feat with harder tire walls and with as much air inside as possible.

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Stunt driver, Terry Grant, said: “It really shouldn’t be underestimated how difficult a two-wheeled speed run like this is; you are always fighting to keep the car balanced right on the edge, as it tries to tip either one way or the other. You need to be conscious of everything, from the camber of the road to the strength of the wind. Thankfully, conditions were excellent and the Range Rover Sport SVR was the perfect precision tool for the job.”

Having set this record, Grant fantastically complemented the 70th anniversary of Land Rover which the company actually celebrated at the 2018 Goodwood Festival of Speed with an incredible parade of its vehicles.

Read our full review on the 2018 Land Rover Range Rover SVR.

Further reading

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Read more Goodwood Festival of Speed.

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