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2014-12-17: Tribute to Brian Lister and the Duesenbergs that starred at Pebble ...
Lister Knobbly Jaguar Yesterday, the hugely talented engineer Brian Lister sadly passed away at the age of 88. He is best known for the sports racing cars that bore his name and were raced with great verve during the 1950s. Especially the later Jaguar and Chevrolet engined machines frequently got the better of much more exotic cars like the big Ferraris and Maseratis. The Lister name does live on and a brand new supercar is the works that may humble the likes of Ferrari once more. As a tribute to the great Brian Lister, we have today taken a very detailed look at arguably his most famous creation; the Lister Knobbly Jaguar. Named after its unusual body, the Knobbly was raced with great success on both sides of the Atlantic. Our detailed article features nine different examples, which are pictured in a 165-shot gallery.
Duesenbergs always feature strongly at Pebble Beach, usually with a class of their own. This year was no exception and we have today added three of the finest examples that were on the lawn in 2014. Scoring best in class was this J Murphy Convertible Sedan, which had just benefitted from a complete restoration. Originally owned by the inventor of Schick Razor and the dry electric razor, this SJ Brunn Riviera Phaeton snatched second in class. Third was for this majestic J Murphy Custom Beverly, finished in a striking gold paintscheme.
Acura, meanwhile, has released the first teaser images of the hugely sophisticated NSX production car, which will be officially launched at next month's North American International Auto Show.

2014-12-15: Maserati Monday with Piccolo 250F and 4CLT, and new HPD Coupe racer ...
Maserati 250 T3 Piccolo While Maserati's centenary year is drawing to a close, we would like to once again highlight a couple of the many great competition cars built during the last 100 years. The most recent is the 250F T3 Piccolo, which was developed ahead of the 1958 season. It represents the ultimate development of the legendary Formula 1 machine and, as the name suggests, is slightly smaller than the earlier versions. It was only briefly raced by the works team but nevertheless proved significantly faster than the Tipo 2 used the year before by Juan Manuel Fangio to win the World Championship. Halfway through the season, Maserati suspended the factory racing efforts and the two Piccolos were sold to the United States. Fortunately, both cars have survived and are actively campaigned in historic events as can be seen in this 82-shot gallery.
Of a slightly earlier vintage is the 4CLT, which was raced between 1947 and 1951 in the first post-War Grands Prix. Derived from the 4CL, the single seater racer featured a sophisticated tubular chassis and a fabulous sixteen-valve four-cylinder engine with separate exhausts pipes for each of the eight ports. Effectively Maserati's first F1 racer, it was campaigned by many of the great drivers of the day with considerable success. Four different examples are featured in our 79-shot gallery.
In preparation for the 2015 FIA World Endurance Championship, ESM Racing has shaken down the team's first HPD ARX-04b this weekend. Developed by Wirth Research, it is a brand new Coupe design and replaces the HPD ARX-03b, which in turn was the final development of a design dating back nearly a decade. It was nevertheless still very competitive, and during its debut season, 2012, the HPD ARX-03b won its class at Sebring and Le Mans, and also won the FIA World Endurance Championship in the LMP2 class. The highly anticipated ARX-04b thus does have a lot to live up to.

2014-12-12: New hot hatches and Renault-Alpine and Lamborghini racers ...
Audi RS 3 Sportback With the second generation Audi RS 3 Sportback, the German company has released one of the most potent hot hatches of all time. Like its predecessor, it is powered by a 2.5-litre, straight five engine, which now produces 362 bhp. In addition to packing a bigger punch, the new RS 3 Sportback is also lighter than the previous model.
Another highly anticipated hot hatch is the new MINI John Cooper Works, which will be launched at the North American International Auto Show next month. It is powered by a two-litre, four-cylinder engine, good for around 230 bhp. It will be available with either a manual or automatic six-speed gearbox.
Also due to be launched at the NAIAS is the Infiniti Q60 Concept. This show car will offer a first glimpse at the upcoming premium sports coupe production car.
Shortly after Renault-Alpine introduced the new GTA V6 model in 1984, a special competition model was introduced to compete in the one-make Europa Cup. The series served as a curtain raiser for most of the European Formula 1 rounds between 1985 and 1988. We recently captured a beautifully restored Renault-Alpine GTA V6 Turbo Europa Cup, which was finished in the colours as used by Dutch racer Jan Lammers when he won the Monaco round.
Reiter Engineering has announced an extensive evolution of their Lamborghini Gallardo GT3 racer, which is appropriately dubbed the Gallardo Extenso. Compared to the earlier GT3 cars, it features a more aggressive body with more sophisticated aerodynamics and wider wheel arches to allow for an increased rear track. Reiter Engineering will build ten Gallardo Extensos for the 2015 season.

2014-12-10: Lovely Alfa Romeo and Ferrari head for auction, and the latest news ...
Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 S Touring Berlinetta The new year is set to kick off well with high profile auctions in Scottsdale in January and Paris early in February. One of the headliners of RM Auctions' second sale in Paris will be this lovely Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 S Touring Berlinetta. One of the very last Alfa Romeos built before the War, this example was actually owned by the mistress of Italy's dictator Benito Mussolini. Following a complete restoration we captured the car at Villa d'Este back in 2007. It was also named best in show at the Salon Prive in 2011. RM estimates the car will be sold for over EUR 1.9 million.
One of the most spectacular cars consigned for the various Scottsdale auctions is one of twelve Ferrari 275 GTB/Cs constructed. Equipped with a lightweight body and chassis, the 275 GTB/C was the last factory Ferrari GT car produced during the 1960s. The example on offer in the Bonhams Scottsdale sale is the penultimate car built, which was raced in period by Scuderia Filipinetti. We saw the car at Pebble Beach, Le Mans and Goodwood and have expanded our gallery with additional images of this car. We have also added another car to the 140-shot gallery, which now includes ten of the twelve cars built.
Mercedes-Benz has further expanded the line-up with the GLE Coupe. The range is topped by the GLE 450 AMG Coupe, which is powered by a 362 bhp, twin-turbo V6 engine.
Combining the turbocharged and supercharged internal combustion engine and an electric motor, the new Volvo XC90 T8 packs a 396 bhp punch. This more than matches the outgoing V8 model, while boasting superior emissions and mileage figures.
Rinspeeds annual Geneva show car for 2015 will be known as the Budii. It features autonomous driving capabilities and can be run on 'auto-pilot'.

2014-12-08: Legendary Bugatti Grand Prix racer and Ferrari Sergio production model ...
Bugatti Type 51 Grand Prix Replacing the most successful racing car of all time, the new-for-1931 Bugatti Type 51 had a very hard act to follow. It was the first Bugatti racing car equipped with a double overhead camshaft, which was inspired by the legendary American Miller engines. The rest of the car very much followed the design of the Type 35, including the steel ladder frame and cable-operated drum brakes. Faced with strong opposition from the likes of Alfa Romeo and Maserati, the Type 51 was quite successful. The well honed chassis allowed it to excel at tight and twisty tracks and fittingly, it won the Monaco Grand Prix. Eventually Bugatti produced 40 examples, four of which are featured today and star in our 66-shot gallery.
Over the weekend, Ferrari delivered the first of six Sergio production cars to its Middle Eastern owner. Based on the 458 Spider and powered by the 605 hp 'Speciale' engine, the limited production machine is based on the Pininfarina Sergio show car launched in Geneva last year. The car is a fitting tribute to the late Sergio Pininfarina, who was responsible for many the design of the greatest Ferrari road cars.
The Italian manufacturer also debuted 1,050 hp, track-only FXX K at Abu Dhabi. We have six additional images to our gallery of the car's first public appearance.