2015-04-27: 2015 Tour Auto report and 310-shot gallery ...
2015-04-24: Rare Ferrari 275 GTB Competizione Clienti and Chevron B24 ...
This past week, the streets of France were once again treated to the annual Tour Auto
. The annual, five-day event visited some of the country's most scenic regions, including the volcanic 'Les Puys' and the Pyrenees mountains on the route from Paris to the famous beach resort of Biarritz on the Atlantic coast. Also on the schedule were four different tracks, including one of our favourites, the undulating Charade or Clermont Ferrand. Especially the mountain stages provided scenic backdrops with snow-covered mountains and steep drops. Celebrating the Barchetta, the 2015 entry featured a Porsche 550A, Maserati 200S and OSCA MT4. Among the other highlights were machinery ranging from a Citroen 2CV to a Ferrari 250 GTO, while Shelby Cobras, Ford GT40s and a wide variety of Porsche 911s also lined up for the road rally.
Our photographers shared the roads with the 233-strong field and have returned with a truly mouth-watering 310-shot gallery
, which serves to illustrate a concise, day-by-day report
2015-04-20: Shanghai round-up with McLaren 540C, and Mercedes-Benz and VW concepts ...
For many years Ferrari had been very successful at exploring the very limits of the homologation requirements. Only when they tried to convince the governing bodies that a 250 LM was merely a 250 GTO with the engine at the other end and then also tried to pass of a purpose-built 4/5th scale 275 GTB as based on the road car, the Italian manufacturer was met with a firm 'non' for two years running. To ensure that would not happen a third time, Ferrari created the 275 Competizione Clienti
, which was ready halfway through the 1965 season. As the name suggests, it was built for the company's wealthy privateer racers. By keeping the car very close to the standard 'short nose' 275 GTB, Ferrari ensured it would pass even the closest scrutiny. Among the changes were a larger fuel tank, equipped with an external filler and additional vents behind the rear wheels. Over the years we have captured six of the ten examples built, which can be admired in this 67-shot gallery
. Among them is chassis 07641, which competed in this week's Tour Auto but sadly failed to reach the finish due to a mechanical failure. We are one day short of making it to the finish and have built up an impressive collection of photographs over the past few days. They are due to be published early next week as part of our comprehensive report of the ever spectacular event.
Most new Chevrons upheld the impressive tradition of winning on their debut. The British specialist manufacturer's first F5000 car, the B24 Chevrolet
, did that and one better. In the 1973 Race of Champions, Peter Gethin used the B24 to score the only ever victory for a F5000 car in an F1 race. We have featured the actual Chevron B24
used by Gethin to clinch that historic win to kick off our celebrations of Chevron's 50th anniversary.
2015-04-17: 2015 Techno Classica report and gallery, and the latest from Shanghai ...
Early this morning, the 2015 Auto Shanghai kicked off with a press preview day. Among the numerous world debuts at this ever more important motor show was the new McLaren 540C
. The second member of the recently launched 'Sports Series', it is the most 'affordable' McLaren road car yet. Powered by a 533bhp version of the familiar twin-turbo V8, it is priced at GBP 126,000 and available in all of McLaren's major markets. Compared to the 570S introduced earlier this month, the 540C
features a slightly more forgiving suspension, which makes it even more useable for use on the road.
Mercedes-Benz uses the Shanghai Motor Show to offer a first glimpse of a future addition to the range. Appropriately dubbed the Concept GLC Coupe
, it will for the basis for the coupe version of the new GLC range. The show car is powered by a twin-turbo V6 engine, which is good for 362 bhp and mated to a nine-speed automatic gearbox.
Volkswagen carried on where it had left off at Geneva with the C Coupe GTE
. This stylish machine is powered by a hybrid drivetrain, which is at full pelt produces a combined 241 bhp and 500 Nm of torque. The styling of the C Coupe GTE
will be carried over to future Volkswagen sedans.
2015-04-15: Rare Touring bodied OSCA and Arrows' most successful F1 car ...
Boasting over 1,250 exhibitors and attracting close to 200,000 visitors over a five-day period, the annual Techno Classica
is the Germany city of Essen is one of the largest events of its kind. The classic car motor show staged in the vast Messe Essen features a wide array of exhibitors, ranging from major manufacturers to specialist suppliers. This year's edition included a special display of cars that competed in the 1929 Tourist Trophy, a look back at the bittersweet 1955 racing season by Mercedes-Benz and unique machinery like a Group 4 Alfa Romeo Montreal and Mansour Ojjeh's one-off road-going Porsche 935. Our photographers explored all halls with more care than ever before. The result is a concise report
, illustrated by an exclusive 230-shot gallery
. In the coming weeks, we will take a more detailed look at some of the 2015 Techno Classicas most interesting highlights.
Quickly becoming one of the most important motor shows and alternating with the Beijing Motor Show, Auto Shanghai will open its doors next week. The Volkswagen Group will be represented strongly in this key market. Audi will showcase the Prologue Allroad Show Car
, which is the third in a line of Prologue show cars. It is powered by a hybrid drivetrain good for a combined 724 bhp and 900 Nm of torque. Parent company Volkswagen will reveal the new Scirocco GTS
. Powered by a 217 bhp engine, this is effectively a Golf GTi in Scirocco clothing.
Another highly impressive machine to break cover this week is the Peugeot 308 R HYbrid
. A plug-in hybrid, equipped with an electric motor on both axles, it boasts a combined 500 bhp. Right now the 308 R
is still a technology showcase but it would certainly give the new Civic Type R or Focus RS a good run for their money.
Skoda meanwhile have introduced the final version of the Fabia R5
. Built to the latest regulations, this rally racer is eligible to run in both national and international events.
In 1960, the Maserati brothers expanded the OSCA line-up by adding the road-going 1600 GT. The race-bred machine featured a lovely twin-cam, four-cylinder engine and was usually bodied by Fissore or Zagato. Among the rarest versions is the Touring Coupe
, which was introduced at the 1961 Turin Motor Show. Only two examples were produced of this elegant machine. One of the design's most unusual features is the location of the spare tyre. This was stored on the parcel shelf, inside a cover made from the same material as the rest of the interior. Over the years, we have managed to capture both examples of this rare machine. The result is this 32-shot gallery
Established during the late 1970s, the Arrows team was a set fixture on the Formula 1 grid for over 25 years. No season during that period was more successful than 1988 when Eddie Cheever and Derek Warwick scored a combined 23 points at a time when a race victory was only good for ten points. They used this Arrows A10B Megatron
, which had been designed by Ross Brawn and featured a rebadged BMW engine. Although the A10B was a regular point scorer during the final season of the original turbo era, Arrows' engineers struggled for most of the season to get the mandatory pop-off valve to work properly. When this was finally sorted, Cheever and Warwick immediately placed third and fourth in the Italian Grand Prix at Monza. At recent editions of the Goodwood Festival of Speed, we were treated to two different examples, which can be seen in full detail in this 28-shot gallery