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2018-12-27: Ford GT40 Mk II and Audi R8 return to Le Mans and new Reiter Engineering Xymera ...
Ford GT40 Mk III One of the highlights this year was to see the actual 1966 Le Mans winning Ford GT40 Mk II return to France and race in the Le Mans Classic. The last time we saw the ex-Bruce McLaren and Chris Amon on track at Le Mans was in 2006 and then it was only demonstrated. Since then, it has changed hands, and was comprehensively restored. In addition to racing at Le Mans, the American enthusiast owner also demonstrated GT40P/1046 at the Goodwood Festival of Speed.
Another great racing car that starred at Le Mans was this Audi R8. Strictly speaking this did not constitute as a return as this particular chassis was not raced in period. Now privately owned, '606' is actively raced and we also snapped it in action during the Spa Six Hours later in the year.
Today, German racing car specialist Reiter Engineering revealed a teaser video of the all-new Xymera. No further details were released but it looks like the car may be a mix of the KTM and Lamborghini race cars Reiter is very familiar with.
  2018-12-21: Our fondest memory from 2018 ...
Eagle Mark 1 Weslake Travelling all over the world to capture car events means we are spoilt for choice for fond memories. What stands out this year, though, were the handful of parade laps with the Eagle Mark 1 during the Goodwood Revival with Derek Bell and Jackie Stewart behind the wheel. What made these laps so special was that the car was alone on the track and this allowed us to not only enjoy the sight of the best looking Grand Prix car of all time but also the sound of the glorious Weslake V12 in the back of the Eagle. The reason for these laps was the passing of the great Dan Gurney earlier in the year. A true racing legend and brilliant engineer, Gurney used this particular car to win the Belgian Grand Prix in 1967. This was just one of the many highlights in the American's career that included successes as a driver but also as a constructor. With the fabulous Mark 1 Eagle and the win at Spa all of his talents were combined, making it one of our all time favourite cars.
We would also like to take this opportunity to wish you, our loyal readers, happy holidays and all the best for the new years.
2018-12-19: New entry level Boxster and Cayman, new John Cooper Works and retro Continental ...
Porsche 718 Cayman T Porsche have introduced a hardcore 'T' or Touring version of the 718 Cayman and 718 Boxster models. Based on the entry-level, four-cylinder engined 718s, the Touring features larger wheels, a lowered chassis and lockable rear differential. As part of the Sport Chrono package, the cars can also be equipped with active drivetrain mounts, which improve the driving dynamics without affecting comfort on rough roads.
MINI, meanwhile, have launched the updated versions of the range-topping John Cooper Works in hatchback and convertible variants. They feature a 231hp version of the four-cylinder turbocharged engine, which is mated as standard to a six-speed manual gearbox, while an eight-speed automatic is available as an option. The new John Cooper Works will make its global debut at the upcoming NAIAS in Detroit.
American luxury manufacturer Lincoln will celebrate the 80th anniversary of the legendary Continental model in great style with the limited Coach Door edition of the Continental. Only 80 examples will be built of the lengthened model that crucially features 'suicide' or 'coach' doors. Popular on many classic luxury cars, they were also fitted to the formidable Continentals of the early 1960s. The Coach Door Continental is reportedly priced at around $100,000.
  2018-12-17: Great Group 5 silhouette racers from Porsche, Ferrari and Corvette ...
Porsche 935/77 Works During the second half of the 1970s, manufacturers exploited the relatively lenient Group 5 regulations to the full extent, creating fantastic production based 'silhouette' racers. The dominant force of the era was the Porsche 935 that was derived from the 911 Turbo. It takes a trained eye to discover the shape of the original road car but underneath the massively flared arches and slant-nose, the racer still retains some of the original metalwork. In historic racing the 935s produced for customers are regularly campaigned but at the Le Mans Classic this very rare ex-works 935 from 1977 returned to the track. Raced only once in period, it has been fully restored by Freisinger Motorsport and was raced at Le Mans by factory driver Romain Dumas.
Among the Porsches' rivals was the Ferrari 512 BB LM, which looks even further departed from its road-going equivalent. It was not able to match the Porsches on outright pace and was left to pick up the scraps. The featured example was campaigned at Le Mans twice and earlier this year starred at the Goodwood Members' Meeting, where Group 5 cars took centre stage.
Also in action at Goodwood in March, and a very rare sight on this side of the Atlantic was one of the Greenwood IMSA Corvettes. Built by John Greenwood and further developed by Bob Riley, these wide-body, big-block engined machines were among the fastest of all the Group 5 cars, particularly in a straight line. The Greenwood Corvette highlighted today spent most of its life in North America but has more recently been acquired by a Swedish enthusiast, who demonstrated it at Goodwood and raced at the Spa Classic in 2018.
2018-12-14: Ferrari Friday with great examples that starred this year ...
Ferrari 550 GTS Maranello In our ongoing look back at the 2018 season, it is today time to highlight several Ferraris that starred this year. The most recent of them is the Ferrari 550 GTS Maranello. Built and raced by Prodrive for the privateer Care Racing team during the early 2000s, these cars brought Ferrari back to the forefront of GT racing. They were hugely successful and eventually inspired Ferrari to officially return to GT racing, where they are still at the forefront. Unusually, all cars were retained by Care Racing for several years but now they are slowly being sold off. We already shot several of the cars in period and now also captured three examples in action at the Le Mans Classsic and Spa Six Hours this year.
Among the star cars at the Monaco Historic Grand Prix were a pair of Ferrari 312 B3s fielded by German specialist Mario Linke. Both chassis 010 and 012 were driven with great verve and former Audi works racer Marco Werner managed to place 'his' example third in his race.
One of the genuine Ferraris that raced at the Goodwood Revival was this fabulous 250 GT SWB Comp/61. Built for the 1961 season, it is one of the ultimate specification SWBs before Ferrari stepped up to the 250 GTO. The featured example was sold in period to a Swedish racing driver, who won the Mille Miglia rally. It is today raced at select events by the current German owners as can be seen in our gallery.
  2018-12-12: 2018 Auction season highlights and new Automobili Pininfarina hypercar named ...
Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato With last weekend's RM Sotheby's The Petersen Automotive Museum sale the 2018 auction season has come to a close. Our list of 25 top sellers is topped by the record breaking 250 GTO sold by RM at Monterey for just over $48 million. The Ferrari 290 MM that topped the this weekend's sale at the Petersen museum with $22 million also makes the top three. It slots in at a joint second with the mighty Duesenberg SSJ that found a new owner at the Gooding Pebble Beach Auctions in August. The most expensive car sold at a European auction in 2018 is this Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato. Raced in period by Jim Clark and one of just three 'super-lightweight' cars, it was sold by Bonhams at their Goodwood Festival of Speed sale for just over $13.3 million.
Due to be one of the absolute stars of the 2019 Geneva Motor Show, the upcoming, all-electric Automobili Pininfarina hypercar will be named the Battista. Powered by four electric motors, good for a combined 1,900 bhp, it will be limited to just 150 examples worldwide and priced at $2 - 2.5 million.
2018-12-10: McLaren Monday with all-new 720S Spider, M6B and F1 GTR ...
McLaren 720S Spider Over the weekend, McLaren revealed the Spider version of the highly acclaimed 720S. Compared to the Coupe launched last year, the new Spider is only 4% heavier and retains the same torsional rigidity without additional strengthening thanks to the carbon-fibre composite chassis shared by both versions of the 720S. The Spider features a foldaway carbon-fibre roof, which can be fitted with an optional glass panel. Carried over from the Coupe is the 720hp version of the bespoke twin-turbo V8 engine. The 720S Spider is available to order immediately and is priced at 237,000 before taxes, which is close to 30,000 more than the Coupe.
To mark the occasion, we have also taken a renewed look at two McLarens we saw in action this year. The earliest is one of the M6B customer Can-Am cars built for the 1968. These were based on the all-conquering M6As raced by the works team the year before. Ordered new by Jo Bonnier, the example highlighted today was somewhat unusual in that it was raced in Europe first and then shipped to North America to race in the Can-Am. Chassis 50-15 was recently re-patriated and is now raced in its original, five-litre configuration with considerable success in the Masters Sports Car Racing championship.
One of the highlights of the year was the Global Endurance Legends demo in the build to the Le Mans Classic as this brought some rarely seen machines back out to the track. Among them was this McLaren F1 GTR. In period, it was raced only in Japan and still wears the striking Team Lark colours to this day.
  2018-12-06: Five great Group C and GTP cars we saw in action this year ...
Peugeot 905 Evo 1 Bis For many enthusiasts the Group C and GTP era is considered the golden hour of sports car racing. Fortunately, these cars are still raced today and this year there was also a Group C and GTP support race at the Le Mans Classic.
Today we take a look at five machines that had not been raced for quite some time. The most spectacular of these was this Peugeot 905 Evo 1 Bis. It was raced to two World Championship victories in period and after a spell in England has now been repatriated to France. For this season, chassis EV16 was prepared by specialists Equipe Europe using engines developed by Oreca.
Porsche was the leading manufacturer in Group C. In addition to the cars built by the factory, cars from other companies also used Porsche engines. Among them was this Cougar C26S built by Yves Courage. It was raced in the guise presented today at Le Mans in 1991 but chassis chassis C02-02 actually dates back to 1983. In the intermittent period, the car was continuously updated to the latest specifications. It raced at Le Mans no fewer than six times. Porsche also allowed others to build complete cars following the 962's design. One of these is this 962 BM, which was one of eight built by hugely successful privateer Brun Motorsport. It was raced at Le Mans in 1989 and 1990, and more recently formed part of the formidable Historic Porsche Collection. Now in new ownership, 962-003BM returned to the track.
Another car not seen racing for many years is this Jaguar XJR-12 that originally competed at Le Mans in 1991 where it placed fourth overall. The following year, J12-C-891 finished second at Sebring.
One of the most interesting cars to return to racing is this Spice SE89P. It was raced originally by Jim Miller of Pratt & Miller fame and as such helped in the development of the mighty Intrepid racing car. Used into the 1991 season, SE89P-003 sports the same works livery as the Intrepids raced later in the year.
2018-12-03: Porsche 917 returned to the track, the Maharajahs' Vauxhall and Bentley ...
Porsche 917 K As we have entered the final month of 2018, it is time to start looking back at the many highlights of the year. One of the most spectacular was certainly this Porsche 917 K. Chassis 008 was originally one of the works cars and was raced at Le Mans in 1969, where it led for 18 hours. It was subsequently used for the famous test at Zeltweg where the Kurz or Short tail version of the 917 design was created with the help of the John Wyer Automotive team. Although it served as a Gulf JWA spare but it was not raced again and was eventually dismantled. The frame was later sold to Freisinger and built up to a complete car again. Not seen for many, many years, the rebuilt car finally resurfaced this year and was shown at the Le Mans Classic and raced at the more recent Imola Classic.
This weekend, Bonhams staged their annual flagship Bond Street Sale at the company's headquarters. Topped by the ex-Graf Albrecht von Goertz BMW 507, the results were disappointing. One car that more than lived up to the expectations was this Vauxhall 30/98 OE Velox Tourer. Originally sold to the Maharajah of Jammy and Kashmir, it now found a new owner for GBP 437,000, which was well above the top estimate.
Another car originally owned by Indian royalty currently available is this striking Bentley Speed Six Mulliner Sportsman's Saloon. Its first owner was the Maharajah of Jaipur and remained in India until 1937. In 2012, it was shown at Pebble Beach as part of a display of cars owned by Indian royalty, where it placed second in class and won two special awards. Chassis LR2778 is currently being offered by RM Sotheby's private treaty department.