Monterey Car Week Once Again Brings The Goods In 2017
I’ll admit it – I’m pretty spoiled when it comes to car stuff. Of course, that’s the sort of thing you’d expect given my line of work. When unicorns and exotic metal become the routine, it’s easy to lose your perspective. But even with my drastically skewed sense of what four-wheeled “normalcy” is supposed to be, Monterey Car Week manages to impress. For starters, there’s the sheer scope of it. Think seven days of events and practically endless things to do, ranging from shows, to auctions, to racing, to cruises. There’s excess of every kind when it comes passion-inspiring rides to enjoy. Then there’s the backdrop. The California central coast is without a doubt one of the most spectacular places on Earth, with jaw-dropping scenery and rich history at every turn. But probably the best thing about MCW is the superiority of the cars on hand. Not only is the quantity over the top, but so is the quality, a rare combination to which I have yet to find an equal in all my auto-themed adventures. I’ve been covering this thing for several years now, but 2017 still managed to bring the goods in a big way.
If you’ve been thinking about going, but you’re still on the fence, then we hope this will convince you to get out there in 2018. If you wanna go, but haven’t had a chance, then we hope our account of the action will assuage your longing – for now, at least.
Continue reading to learn more about the 2017 Monterey Car Week.
2017 Rolls Royce Dawn in Fuxia
Billionaire entrepreneur and philanthropist Michael Fux is no stranger to enjoying the finer things in life. Case in point: the man is known in the auto circles for his passion for Rolls-Royce. It’s not enough though for him to just have one Roller in his garage. Nope. That’s not how Fux rolls, no pun intended. Fux actually has 11 of them. 11 Rolls-Royce vehicles, each personalized to the heavens just to meet his specific whims. It’s no surprise, then, that Rolls-Royce treats Fux as one of its most important clients, important enough at least to receive this one-off Rolls-Royce Dawn that’s more specifically called the “Dawn in Fuxia.”
Wordplay notwithstanding, the Dawn in Fuxia is unique in a lot of ways, not the least of which is the fact that it belongs to Fux, hence the clever way Rolls decided to spell “fuchsia.” There are other important details about this one-off Dawn, but it really is that color scheme that makes it stand out. Not only does it look gravitating in it of itself, but it’s also super exclusive, and by “super exclusive,” I mean that nobody else in the world – not a sheikh, a billionaire, or anybody else – will have access to that specific color. Only Michael Fux can use that color because he was the one who asked Rolls-Royce to create it in the first place, specifically for this particular Dawn. Even better, it’s not the only shade that Fux has exclusive rights to. There are 11 of them in total and each one of them is only available to the man who has been an unabashed supporter of the British luxury brand.
Continue after the jump to read more about the Rolls-Royce Dawn in Fuxia.
2018 Ken Okuyama Cars Kode0
Ken Okuyama Cars, the auto design firm headed by Japanese industrial designer Ken Okuyama, the man who penned the Ferrari Enzo supercars, unveiled a new creation at the 2017 Monterey Car Week. While last year’s event brought us the Kode57, a limited-edition speedster based on some recent Ferrari designs, 2017 sees the Kode0 come into the spotlight. A one-off design that won’t be followed by a limited-edition run, the Kode0 broke cover at Pebble Beach.
If you’ve been living under a rock, you should know that Ken Okuyama is a well-established design that has worked for a number of famous companies, including General Motors, Porsche, and Pininfarina. He helped design the 996-generation Porsche 911 and Boxster, as well as supervised projects such as the Ferrari 599, fifth-generation Maserati Quattroporte, Mitsubishi Colt CZC, Maserati Birdcage 75th concept, and James Glickenhaus’ Ferrari P4/5, He also penned the Ferrari Enzo, the Pininfarina Metrocubo, and Ferrari Rossa concept. The new Kode0 joins a long line of personal designs that date back to 2008 and, despite being described as a follow-up to the Kode57, it has nothing in common with the previous design.
Continue reading to learn more about Ken Okuyama Cars Kode0.
2017 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Volante
The second-generation V12 Vanquish was introduced in 2012, 11 years after Aston Martin used the nameplate to replace the aging Virage. Although it borrows the same styling cues made popular by the DB9, the Vanquish stands out thanks to its design features inspired by the One-77 supercar, sporty yet stylish interior, and a powerful 5.9-liter V-12 engine. Set to be replaced before 2018, the Vanquish is still being used as a base for numerous limited-edition grand tourers.
In 2016, Aston Martin unveiled the Vanquish Zagato, the fifth car to emerge from a collaboration that stretches back over five decades. Previewed by a concept car that Aston Martin showcased at the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este earlier in 2016, the production coupe has been joined by a convertible at the 2016 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. Set to be produced in only 99 units, just like the coupe, the Vanquish Zagato Volante follows in the footsteps of the 1987 V8 Vantage Volante and the 2003 DB AR1 as an exclusive Zagato-built sports car with a bespoke body. And, if its predecessors are any indication, the Vanquish Zagato Volante will become one of the rarest Aston Martins ever created.
Updated 08/21/2017: We added a series of new images taken during the 2017 Monterey Car Week.
Continue reading to learn more about the Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Volante.
2017 Mercedes-Maybach Vision 6 Cabriolet
Revived for the second time in 2014, this time around as Mercedes-Maybach, Stuttgart’s super premium firm is on a roll, now offering no fewer than five different models. There are the S500 and S600 sedans, the longer S600 Pullman, the G650 Landaulet SUV, and the S650 Cabriolet. Maybach is also doing well as far as concept cars go, with the stunning Vision 6 getting everyone excited about a big luxury coupe we might see in showrooms in a few years. Now, Mercedes-Maybach turned the Vision 6 into a convertible, signaling that this concept is moving closer to becoming a production model.
Unveiled at the 2017 Monterey Car Week, the Vision 6 Cabriolet was previewed by a coupe of teasers that made everyone think of something entirely different. While most speculated that Mercedes is launching a brand-new concept, it turned out that Maybach simply chopped the roof off the Vision 6. But while it may sound a bit disappointing, it’s proof that the Germans have big plans for the Vision 6. This could also mean that Maybach may get a standalone model that’s larger and more luxurious than theS-Class Coupe. Just like in the good old days when Maybach was an independent firm and competed against the likes of Rolls-Royce, Cadillac, and Duesenberg. But, until that happens, let’s see what the Vision 6 Cabriolet brings to the table.
Continue reading to learn more about the Mercedes-Maybach Vision 6 Cabriolet.
2017 Infiniti Prototype 9
Once every few years, each major automaker unveils a futuristic concept car that either previews an upcoming design language or technology, or it simply showcases the brand’s ability to build amazing things. Infiniti is no stranger to this trend with the EMERG-E and Vision GT concepts, but it has taken a different approach for the 2017 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. Instead of looking into the future, Infiniti took inspiration from the distant past for its latest concept car. It’s called the Prototype 9, and it’s a tribute to pre-World War II single-seater race cars.
Inspired by vehicles that dominated European motorsport in the 1930s, the Prototype 9 is also a tribute to the early days of Japanese racing and the country’s first race track, Tamagawa Speedway. And unlike its ancestors, which had large V-8, V-12, and even V-16 engines, the Prototype 9 is powered by a next-generation all-electric drivetrain. So, in essence, it combines a vintage design with modern technology, which is what a good concept car is supposed to showcase. Unfortunately, this vehicle isn’t slated to go into production, so don’t get your hopes up over being able to buy a track-ready single-seater anytime soon.
Updated 08/21/2017: We added a series of new images takes during the car’s official presentation at the 2017 Monterey Car Week.
Continue reading to learn more about the Infiniti Prototype 9.
The McLaren 720S Goes Flamboyantly Purple as a One-Off at Pebble Beach
What happens when you cram thousands of wealthy people, heaps of amazing cars, and enough events to cover a whole week together? You get the greatest week of the year: the Monterey Car Week. You never know what you’re going to see. With auctions from names like Russo & Steele, Mecum, Gooding & Co., and RM Sotheby’s, there’s a massive guest list that includes some of the greatest cars ever built. But, over at Pebble Beach, things take a completely different turn, with this year bringing cars like the BMW Concept Z4 and Infiniti Prototype 9 into the mix with all of the classic cars. Meanwhile, McLaren has to make its own splash, and it’s doing so this year with a special one-off version of the 720S painted in one of the loudest and intriguing shades of purple that you’ll probably ever see on something with wheels.
The car in question was built by McLaren Special Operations to the exact specifications requested by Michael Fux. If the name doesn’t sound familiar, he’s owned a number of collector cars that include a some special McLaren one-offs like a 12C in McLaren Orange, a 12C Spider in yet another shade of purple, and even a McLaren P1 with an exclusive color of green that has only be used on that specific vehicle. Unlike some McLaren one-offs, this beauty features a bespoke paint color called “Fux Fuchsia” that was developed specifically for Fux by Rolls-Royce and then redeveloped for its application on the 720S by McLaren. So, with that in mind, don’t expect to get your hands on it, as our man Fux owns the exclusive rights to this specific hue – if that’s not exclusive, I don’t know what is. Keep reading to learn about what Mr. Fux requested from McLaren SVO.
Updated 08/21/2017: We added a series of new images taken during the sport car’s presentation at the 2017 Monterey Car Week.
2017 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance – Preview
Founded in 1950, the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance was originally an ancillary event to the Pebble Beach Road Races. Since its relatively humble beginnings, this “competition of elegance” has grown significantly, and is now widely considered to be the most important and well-respected event of its kind in the world. This is the flagship of Monterey Car Week, the capstone to the annual central California automotive palace. Every year, roughly 15,000 enthusiasts show up to frolic amongst the well-polished metal and rub shoulders with celebrities and industry hot shots, and TopSpeed will once again be there to capture the action.
Judging the competition of elegance will be a panel of experts selected from throughout the four-wheeled sphere (racing drivers, designers, journalists, etc.), tasked with selecting a third-, second-, and first-place winner in a huge number of classes. Out of those first-place winners, only one will take home the highly coveted Best of Show accolade. The judges base their scores on vehicle authenticity, function, history, and style, and taking home a win means serious bragging rights amongst top-shelf collectors. What’s more, the event’s prestige and visibility makes it a fantastic venue for vehicle debuts, with many major automakers pulling the sheet on concepts and production vehicles throughout the weekend. We’ve collected some of the more interesting vehicles slated to show in the following preview, so read on to get the lowdown before Concours Sunday.
Continue reading to learn more about the 2017 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance.
2018 Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Speedster
Introduced in 2012, the second-generation Vanquish isn’t yet as old as the model it replaced, but it won’t be long until Aston Martin unleashes the third-generation car. And it seems that the grand tourer is getting a proper send off with several special-edition models up for grabs. Arguably the most spectacular of them all is the Zagato, which was built in both coupe and Volante body styles. Limited to only 99 units each, the Zagatos are long gone as of 2017, but if you’re still looking to get one, Aston Martin just unveiled two new version wearing the Zagato badge. One of them is the Vanquish Zagato Speedster, a two-seat drop-top that steps away from the usual convertible configuration.
The Speedster’s arrival is far from surprising, because we’ve already seen a camo-free example being driver near the Nurburgring track earlier this summer. However, it is a bit surprising that it was designed as a two-seater, as is the fact that Aston Martin expanded the current Vanquish Zagato range to no fewer than four models, including a shooting brake. Find out more about the Zagato Speedster and what makes it stands out compared to other models in the review below.
Continue reading to learn more about the Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Speedster.
Aston Martin Announces Additional Vanquish Zagato Models
What happens when you mix British good looks with Italian flair? The answer is one very desirable automobile, as evidenced by nearly six decades of collaboration between Aston Martin and Zagato. The latest products of this happy union are new Speedster and Shooting Brake iterations of the Vanquish, which join the Coupe and Volante to bring the grand total of Zagato’d Vanquish models to four. Revealed during Monterey Car Week just five days ahead of the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, Aston says production will be limited to 325 units total, including 99 Coupes, 99 Volantes, 28 Speedsters, and 99 Shooting Brakes.
Production is already underway, with deliveries expected through 2018. Unfortunately, anyone looking to grab one of the more rare Speedster models is out of luck, as all 28 are already spoken for. Updates from the design house only pertain to the exterior and cabin, while the mechanicals remain unchanged. That means as much as 580 horsepower from an all-atmosphere 6.0-liter V-12 powerplant, with output routed rearwards by way of a Touchtronic III gearbox. Adaptive dampers help it handle. Outside, you’ll find carbon fiber body components, plus taillights inspired by the outrageous Vulcan racing car and a 3D Zagato “Z” theme for the front fascia. Inside is herringbone carbon fiber with anodized bronze trim.
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Infiniti To Unveil Retro-Style Concept Car at Pebble Beach
Japanese luxury automaker Infiniti announced plans to unveil a new concept car at the 2017 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance later this month. But unlike the usual show cars we see from automakers today, it won’t be a futuristic vehicle or a zero-emission prototype. Instead, Infiniti will showcase a heritage-inspired vehicle that captures the "ingenuity and adventure of early motorsports with the brand’s contemporary ’Powerful Elegance’ design language." It sounds a bit ambiguous, but the teaser photos available right now show a vehicle inspired by Grand Prix cars from the 1930s.
Specifically, Infiniti’s creation seems heavily based on the single-seater designs that companies like Mercedes-Benz and Auto Union raced around 80 years ago. The most famous examples are the Mercedes-Benz W25 and W125 and the Auto Union Type C and Type D. These cars had massive engines mounted either at the front or to the rear, had fusiform shapes when viewed from above, and were nicknamed the Silver Arrows due to their silver paint and racing success at the time. So what’s with Infiniti drawing inspiration from cars that were built with many decades before Nissan launched its premium division?
Continue reading for the full story.
Mercedes Teases Its New Concept For Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance
Just a few days ago, Mercedes gave us a big shock when it posted a short video of its design team in a meeting, essentially giving us the low down to expect a new sports car concept when Pebble Beach Concours D’elegance kicks off on August 20, 2017. At the time, they failed to give us any information at all, aside from Gorden Wagener – the Chief Designer – saying that it will be an “icon of the brand” and a “big surprise.” Along with those words were just a couple of sketches on the table ahead of them that depicted a red sports car of sorts and a wheel design. There were also sketches of the IAA concept in the mix as well, pointing to the possibility that the new concept could share some DNA with it, but it was mentioned that the front end was going to be dramatically different. Now, Mercedes has released an official teaser of its upcoming concept and, while it doesn’t give us much information, it is rather intriguing, to say the least.
First off, you can see the wheel that was displayed in the sketch from the first video. It actually looks quite sporty and appears to have some 24 thin spokes, so it’s essentially going to roll on the German version of wire wheels. At the beginning of the video, we see a slanted silhouette view of the car from the beltline up, exposing a long flat roof that gently curves to the rear. Meanwhile, the body line just below the belt line is long and slightly curved, which should bring some exquisite elegance to the concept, to say the least. The video then quickly pans to the front end where we get to see an unmistakably long hood with excessively sharp body lines and a Mercedes emblem perched at the tip – clearly something that points to this being one luxurious vehicle and probably outside of the confines of most of our pockets, should it make it into production. The interior actually looks a little bland but features some copper or gold trim and a chrome steering wheel. The instrument cluster consists of just two gauges while tall center console quite literally separates passenger from the driver. So, what is this car really going to be? Keep reading to see the short video and to hear more about it.
What is this Mysterious Sports Car Concept that Mercedes Will Debut at Pebble Beach?
The Pebble Beach Concours D’elegance takes place on August 20, so it’s just a matter of weeks before we get to lay eyes on some of the most gorgeous cars in existence. And, while some of our favorite celebrities are sure to make an appearance – think Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jay Leno, among others – we now have word that there will be an all-new sports car concept sporting a Mercedes badge making its world debut. The word comes thanks to a quick post on Instagram and Twitter of a video that gave us a peek inside a secretive meeting at the Advance Design Center in Sindelfingen, Germany.
Of course, the video post left a lot to the imagination and told us very little, but Gorden Wagener – the Chief Designer – says it will be “an icon or the brand” and that it’s sure to be a “big surprise.”
In the video, we can make out a sketch of a wheel that is undoubtedly for the new concept and a somewhat blurry glimpse as a sketch of a car. Unfortunately, however, we can’t make out much of the design cues. We know it will be a sports car, though, and considering they had sketches of the IAA concept, I suspect it will be related to that in one way or another. Wagener did make it a point to tell us that the front end was going to be different, though, so even if it has the same silhouette as the IAA, it will certainly sport some different design cues. So, just what can we expect from Mercedes at Pebble Beach? Well, I have a couple of ideas, so let’s take a look at the video, and talk a little more about it.
Continue reading for the full story.
2016 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance Is Distilled Auto Elegance
Start with a rich green affluent spirit, add three parts vehicular excellence, one part celebrity, and serve chilled in a fairway glass – that’s the recipe to mix up the perfect Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. As the headline event of the annual Monterey Car Week extravaganza, the Concours attracts a huge number of rare, historically significant, and perfectly preserved automobiles, all of which are rolled out and lined up on the Pebble Beach Golf Links for the perusal of enthusiasts and judgment of experts. For onlookers, it’s like stepping back in time. For the car owners, a win in Pebble Beach is a collector’s dream come true.
Per tradition, we were on the scene to check out all the machinery on display. As in years past, several of the major automakers also made an appearance to show their latest wares, hinting towards the future with new prototypes and concepts – the perfect complement to the huge number of entries spread across the links.
Read on for what it was like to be there.
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Floyd Mayweather Jr. Gets First Dibs On New Koge57 Supercar
Say what you will about Floyd Mayweather Jr’s history as a professional prizefighter, but the man can never be accused of not having any taste any cars. Money May once again flaunted that taste for all the world to see when he became the first customer to place an order for the just-unveiled Kode57 supercar.
Multiple reports have indicated that Mayweather signed up to purchase the $2.5 million supercar shortly after the car made its debut over the weekend at the Quail Motorsports Gathering as part of the Pebble Beach Concours d’ Elegance. Obi Okeke, Floyd’s personal supercar dealer, confirmed to TMZ about the prized acquisition, adding that the Kode57 has been on the retired boxer’s radar for quite some time now and is keen on adding it to his growing collection of exotics. Okeke also said that the Ken Okuyama-designed supercar will only come in five examples, although the company itself has yet to confirm the statement.
In any case, the Kode57 was one of the most talked-about debuts at the Quail, largely because of the involvement of Okuyama, who is known for his time with Pininfarina, where he penned cars like the Ferrari Enzo, Maserati Quattroporte, and the 2000 Ferrari Rossa Concept, a car many believe was the design inspiration of the Kode57. The open-top roadster is powered by a Novitec Ross-tuned 6.0-liter V-12 engine that cracks out 612 horsepower and 448 pound-feet of torque.
The $2.5 million price tag may look steep given that the car “only” produces 612 horsepower, but for a man of Floyd Mayweather Jr’s taste and bottomless pockets, such a purchase can be considered a drop in the bucket. You keep being you, Money May.
Continue after the jump to read the full story.
Top 10 Cars at Mecum’s Monterey Auction Pull in Nearly $20 Million Combined
Mecum is a pretty big auction house. It averages more than one auction per month, often ranging anywhere between 700 lots and 3,000 lots, with a general average of at least 20,000 lots per year. Every year, Monterey Car Week serves as a big venue for Mecum and normally accounts for a large volume of car sales. This year was no different, with Mecum pulling in $19,470,000 from the top ten cars that went under the hammer. Of course, Mecum wasn’t the venue that saw the first Shelby Cobra – the CSX 2000 – sell for a record-breaking $13.25 million, but its top 10 didn’t pull in peanuts either.
Of course, the top 10 list is littered with beautiful examples from Ferrari, McLaren, and Porsche, but there was a 1965 Shelby Cobra and a Bugatti Veyron that held their own pretty well and landed in big seller’s circle. The biggest seller at Mecum’s auction last week was a 2014 Ferrari LaFerrari, which was one of three made in its respective color and had very low mileage, selling for a whopping $4.7 million. But, before I go too far into specifics here, let’s dive on in and look at all of the top 10, starting with a 2011 Ferrari 599 GTO that took 10th place.
Keep reading to learn about the top 10 sellers during the 2016 Mecum Auction in Monterey
2016 Cadillac Escala
The annual Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance has been giving us outstanding public debuts for quite a while now, and this year’s edition is no exception from that rule. The 2016 event has been packed with many great debuts, but very few are as spectacular as the Cadillac Escala concept. The American brand has made a tradition from bringing its most daring concepts at Pebble Beach. In 2011, Cadillac introduced the stunning Ciel convertible. In 2013, the Elmiraj followed, showing the world that Cadillac can still design large coupes that can stand out from a crowd. Come 2016 and GM’s luxury division introduced the Escala sedan at the same car show.
Described as a vehicle that previews "the design and technical ideas driving the next phase of Cadillac’s ongoing expansion," the Escala is a four-door sedan that’s slightly longer than the current CT6. It also previews Caddy’s upcoming flagship vehicle, which should arrive in production form by the end of the decade.
“Escala is a concept with two clear objectives,” said Johan de Nysschen, president of Global Cadillac. “First, Escala is a statement of intent for the next iteration of the Cadillac design language, and also technical concepts in development for future Cadillac models. Secondly, Escala builds Cadillac’s aspirational character, signaling the brand’s return to the pinnacle of premium.”
Updated 08/22/2016: We added a series of images taken during the car’s official presentation at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. Check them out in the picture gallery.
Continue reading to learn more about the Cadillac Escala Concept.
BMW 2002 Hommage Gets Racing Livery And New Wheels At Pebble Beach
At the 2016 Villa d’Este, BMW stunned the automotive world by unveiling the 2002 Hommage concept, an M2 coupe that was extensively modified into a modern interpretation of the classic 2002, the range-topping version of the "02 Series," built between 1966 to 1977. Three months later and the German company brought a new version of the concept car at the 2016 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance.
Having celebrated its 100th anniversary this year, BMW has released quite a few concept cars paying tribute to its iconic, classic models. And Munich is apparently enjoying all the publicity, which is probably why the 2002 Hommage got a minor makeover for Pebble Beach. That’s not a bad thing though, as BMW built many spectacular cars in the 1960s and 1970s.
So what makes this new 2002 Hommage concept special, you ask? Well, even though it’s basically identical to the first show car inside and out, it was modified to pay tribute to the race-spec version of the original 2002 Turbo. You see, the 2002 wasn’t just a successful road car. It also spawned various race versions, being racing in anything from rally events to track series such as the Trans Am, and the German Racing Championships, the predecessor of the current DTM.
To turn the 2002 Hommage into a modern interpretation of the 2002 Turbo, BMW painted in a two-tone livery that echoes one of the most iconic paint schemes of the 1960s and 1970s. Finished in bright orange with black accents on the upper side panels, engine hood, and trunk lid, the concept from Pebble Beach reminds us of the Jagermeister-liveried 2002s raced in both rally and track championships. BMW even went as far as to use a logo that’s very similar to that of the German liquor company, while the "Turbomeister" decals on the doors, fenders, and hood have the same font as "Jagermeister."
What’s more, BMW added bi-color 20-inch wheels in gold, another feature seen on the classic 2002 Turbo, as well as gold brake calipers, and gold headlamp detailing to recreate the yellow hue commonly found in the headlamps of racing cars back in the day. Everything else remained unchanged compared to the first 2002 Hommage concept, but I must say that this new version is a lot more spectacular to look at.
Continue reading for the full story.
2016 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance – Preview
For those of us that are into luxury and exotic vehicles, Monterey Car Week is, hands down, the best event of the year. The world’s finest automobiles grace us with their presence, and there are so many different things going on. This year you’ll get to experience The Quail: A Motorsports Gathering, the Concorso Italiano, and the biggest highlight of all is the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance that takes place this year on August 21st.
Manufacturers also love to use the venue as a place to show off new designs and new concepts, and this year is stacking up to be quite the show. We’re expecting to see the new Mercedes-Maybach Concept, Elvis Presley’s BMW 507, and it wouldn’t surprise us if we saw something fresh from Lamborghini thrown into the mix – think Huracán Superleggera, maybe? On top of that, we’ll get a chance to check out the McLaren 570GT and the 570S GT4, and might even get a look at something new from Genesis now that the new luxury brand is finally up and running.
This year, we’ll have staff members on the scene to bring the news as it happens, and hopefully, they won’t get caught up in that nasty Soberanes Fire. As of the time of this writing, that fire is now 60-percent contained and has yet to hamper Monterey Car Week. We’ll be reporting live on our Facebook page throughout the event and will be quite busy keeping up with all the new developments. Until that happens, however, let’s take a closer look at what we can expect from what is, arguably, the best car show of the year.
Continue reading to learn more about the 2016 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance.
2017 McLaren 570GT by MSO Concept
Launched in 2015, the Sports Series is McLaren’s newest family of performance cars. Slotted below the Super Series, which includes nameplates like the 650S, 675LT, and 688HS, the Sports Series currently consists of three road-going models and a race car as of August 2016, all powered by the award-winning 3.8-liter V-8 engine. The lineup’s most recent version is the 570GT, a less track-focused variant of the 570S with a more luxurious cabin, enhanced luggage room, softer suspension setting, and improved sound insulation.
Much like any other modern McLaren, the 570GT is also set to spawn one-off and limited-edition models modified by McLaren’s customizing division, MSO, The British company previewed the 570GT by MSO at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, giving customers a closer peak at the special features the brand is readying for the nameplate.
"This is the second consecutive year that McLaren Special Operations has used the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance to demonstrate our capabilities on Sports Series cars," said Paul Mackenzie, executive director of MSO. "This year, closely following the reveal of the GT addition to the Sports Series family, we showcase the breadth of McLaren Special Operations personalization work, this time focusing on bespoke engineering design and components. With its Electro Chromic Roof especially, the McLaren 570GT by MSO Concept would be well suited to the needs and demands of customers in sunnier and warmer climates."
There’s no specific word as to when the production car will arrive, but we expect it to hit the streets by the end of the year.
Updated 09/02/2016: McLaren will come at the Chantilly Arts & Elegance Richard Mille with a specially designed 570GT by MSO Concept, painted in a very cool Pacific Blue.
Continue reading to learn more about the McLaren 570GT by MSO Concept.
Soberanes Fires Continue To Burn, Monterey Car Week Undeterred
With the 66th annual Monterey Car Week kicking off in a few days, some 85,000 auto enthusiasts are expected to arrive on the central California coast to take part in various car shows, auctions, racing events, and cruises. However, attendees will need to share the road with the 5,000 firefighters currently battling a devastating wildfire located just south of Monterey.
One of the biggest issues is access to Highway 1, the main artery that runs north to south through the central coast. With the huge increase in traffic expected for MCW, concerns are being raised over whether or not firefighters will be able to get to and from the frontlines.
However, according to a report from local NBC affiliate KSBW, Cal Fire and the California Highway Patrol have given the event the go-ahead, and are working with organizers to make sure firefighting efforts aren’t hampered.
Some of the changes include a truncated route for the Tour d’Elegance, a classic car cruise that traditionally includes a run south into Big Sur. This year, the route has been shortened to 35 miles, rather than the usual 70. There will also be stricter parking enforcement, and additional law enforcement in high-traffic areas.
So far, the Soberanes wildfire has burned more than 70,000 acres and destroyed 57 homes. Hundreds of locals have been forced to flee, and the fire has been blamed for three injuries and one fatality. Acting Governor Tom Torlakson has declared a state of emergency in Monterey County.
Thankfully, the majority of the firefighting effort is now centralized south of Monterey, and it’s expected that the increase in traffic won’t have a major impact on firefighting efforts.
“We feel pretty comfortable that we are able to get in and out of the areas that we need to in case of emergency,” Cal Fire Capt. Mark Edria told KSBW.
Cal Fire is reporting that the fire is currently 60 percent contained. You can find updates on the firefighting efforts here.
The wildfire is thought to have originated from an illegal campfire in Garrapata State Park.
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Mercedes-Maybach Teases New Concept Car For Pebble Beach
Pebble Beach is known as a charitable event that holds a Concours d’Elegance that brings together some of the world’s rarest and most beautiful classic cars, but it’s also the place where many exotic modern cars have made their public debut in recent years. This year’s edition will be no different and it seems that we’ll be seeing at least one spectacular concept car in the metal. It comes from Mercedes-Benz and it’s a massive, 20-foot long two-door coupe.
The German brand unveiled the teaser above on its Facebook page with the following caption: "A new age of automotive luxury stretches before us — and it spans nearly 20 feet in length. True beauty deserves room to breathe."
Although this statement doesn’t provide much information, the sheer size of the vehicle and the badge visible on the C-pillar suggests we’re looking at a Maybach concept car. This seems somewhat strange given that we haven’t heard of Maybach planning to launch a new model anytime soon, but a concept car doesn’t necessarily preview a production model.
For instance, the last time Maybach built a coupe, it was just a one-off created for Fulda Tires, the German division of Goodyear. I’m talking about the Excelero, a 19-foot long, two-door based on the Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren.
On the other hand, now that Mercedes-Benz has an S-Class Coupe in its stable, a production two-door Maybach based on the massive Merc is more than feasible. With the underpinnings and engine already up for grabs (with certain modifications, of course), the luxury brand will only have to handle the coachbuilding and the new interior.
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