Home » November 2011
TVR is back!

Blackpool’s finest returns with 6.2-litre V8, but you’ll never guess how much one costs…

There was more good news for fans of overpriced, hairy-chested, rear-wheel-drive sportscars this week as TVR emerged from the wastelands and revealed a new price list.
The tumultuous days of the company appear to have been set aside as current owner, Russian millionaire Nikolai Smolensky, announced plans to restart production in the UK. And (deep breath), it'll cost ya'.

Prices for the brand new TVR Sagaris, Tuscan Convertible, Tuscan Mk II, Cerbera, Chimaera and Griffith all start at £99,600, and are built "on order to the individual specification of the customer".
That does however, include a 6.2-litre Chevy V8 putting out 426bhp and 420lb ft of torque, a limited slip diff, some air conditioning, central locking, leather, a stainless steel exhaust system and a Radio CD with USB. USB! In a TVR! It'll be fitting ABS and traction control next.
TVR will also upgrade your existing TVR - if it still works, that is - to the new 6.2-litre V8 for up to £36,000, including new dampers, a reinforced gearbox/diff/driveshaft, ECU and re-trim. They'll also source you a used TVR if you really want to pay less than £100,000.
Says TVR:" Everybody here is very busy making this the success that TVR deserves after some years of not having produced any cars."

So, don't miss this  opportunity...

Mercedes-Benz ML 63 AMG

Jaguar XKR-S Convertible (2011)

Jaguar has announced the smallest surprise of the year - a convertible version of the rabid XKR-S. We all knew it was coming, but it shouldn't take the sheen off the fastest and most powerful Jaguar open-top road car ever.
It's essentially the cabrio bodyshell mated to the XKR-S mechanical spec. That means the AJ-V8 Gen3 V8, tuned to produce a startling 543bhp and 502lb ft of torque.
So how quick is the new Jaguar XKR-S Convertible?
Very rapid indeed. The supercharged cabrio has a claimed top speed of 186mph and will pass the benchmark 60mph in 4.2sec.
If you're a speed freak, you may not be as interested in the 292g/km of CO2 rating.
Looks good though...
The XKR-S follows the bad-boy attitude of the coupe: there's a new bumper design, a whopping air intake design, carbonfibre splitters and a 10mm drop in ride height. Any lower and it'd be billed by Chelsea and Westminster Council for scraping away the King's Road.
Naturally, the roof of the XKR-S is automatically powered from nought to posing in just 18 seconds. And the most expensive Jag sports car is dripping with equipment, including 16-way adjustable leather seats and a choice of piano black or dark aluminium trim for the cabin.
CAR is driving the XKR-S Convertible this autumn; stay tuned for our first drive review.

Mercedes SLS Black Series

Vettel Stumbles, Hamilton Wins Abu Dhabi GP

ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates — Sebastian Vettel failed to make it past the second turn in Sunday's Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, so Lewis Hamilton took his place — as leader and eventual winner, pulling away from the field in Vettel-like fashion.
Vettel spun out of control while leading as the first lap began. The right rear tire on his Red Bull Racing machine deflated abruptly, and after he limped to the pit area, mechanics determined that damage to the car's suspension relegated Vettel to his first DNF (did not finish) of the season.
Meanwhile, Hamilton, who was outpaced in pole qualifying, immediately sped past the spinning Vettel and pulled away from Fernando Alonso's Ferrari.
Hamilton finished more than 8 seconds in front of Alonso, with Hamilton's McLaren-Mercedes teammate Jenson Button 3rd.
Vettel clinched his second straight Formula 1 driving championship four races ago with a 3rd-place finish behind Button and Alonso in the Japanese Grand Prix. However, he did not lose any motivation to win, and had strung two more victories — his 10th and 11th of the season — since clinching.
He was bidding to tie Michael Schumacher's record for number of victories in a season by winning the last two races of the year, but his retirement Sunday means Schumacher's record is safe for now.
Hamilton won for the third time this season, scoring only his sixth podium finish in a problem-plagued season. Several times in recent races, he has had on-track run-ins with Ferrari driver Felipe Massa.
Red Bull's Mark Webber was 3rd until the final lap, but had to pit at the last minute because he had not used the alternate tire. Drivers are required to use both sets of tires in each race. The late pit stop enabled Button to move up to 3rd.

Jari-Matti Latvala takes Wales Rally GB win

Jari-Matti Latvala battled all weekend to take his 5th career WRC triumph.

When Mikko Hirvonen retired from the final round of the season on day 2, Ford team mate Latvala was free to race S├ębastien Loeb for the win. The Finn was on top form and defeated the eight-time world champion on merit. The drama came to an end when Loeb was involved in a road accident with a Spanish spectator who panicked when he came face to face with the Frenchman and turned the wrong direction, damaging the Citroen DS3 WRC beyond repair.

After playing ideal team mate to Hirvonen on the final rounds of the year, Latvala, fourth in points, but clearly the stronger of the Ford duo this season picked up his first victory since Sardinia in 2009.  “This is a great feeling, it has been a long time since I won a rally”, said an overjoyed Latvala. “It has been a very difficult season and it is great to win the last round of the year. We are going to go for the title next year, in a Ford!”.

Mads Ostberg held his ailing Focus RS WRC together to come runner-up in a spirited drive that does his future plenty of good. The promising Norwegian bookend his year with a second place in the opener in Sweden and of course here in Wales in the finale. The only real battle on Sunday was between Kris Meeke and Henning Solberg for the final spot on the podium with the Norwegian getting nod, his first top three result since Poland 2009.

Matthew Wilson ran a discreet but steady rally on his home event to end the year with a top five result. Following Wilson was the mightily impressive Estonian, Ott Tanak on the DMACK shod Ford. Evgeny Novikov nursed his Ford home and managed to get past Dennis Kuipers late in the running for seventh place. American internet sensation brought his season to a conclusion with a clean run and ninth place ahead of Armindo Araujo in a privateer Mini JCW.

1 Latvala
2 Ostberg+3:42.9s
3 H. Solberg+7:05.1s
4 Meeke +7:12.3s
5 Wilson+8:57.3s
6 Tanak+9:27.1s
7 Novikov+9:47.7s
8 Kuipers+10:12.7s
9 Block+16:01.2s
10 Araujo+17:01.6s

1 Ogier 3pts
2 Sordo 1
3 Latvala 1

1 Loeb 222 points
2 Hirvonen 214
3 Ogier 196
4 Latvala 172
5 P. Solberg 110
6 Ostberg 88
7 Wilson 63
8 Sordo 59
9 H. Solberg 56
10 Raikkonen 34

2012 Nissan GT-R

Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder: RWD LP550-2 here in 2012

Sant'Agata plans a two-wheel drive version of the Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder – reflecting 2009's limited-series rear-wheel drive Balboni edition of the Gallardo coupe.
Sales of the new rear-drive LP550-2 Spyder will start in early 2012, Lambo has confirmed to CAR. It will look the same as any other Gallardo convertible; the only changes will be to the hardware under the skin.

Lamborghini Gallardo LP550-2 Spyder RWD: the lowdown

Like the rear-wheel drive Gallardo tin-top, the Spyder will have a slightly detuned V10 driving just the rear axle.
As the name suggests, the LP550-2 will develop 550 horsepower, instead of the regular 560. That's the metric pony, meaning the 550-2 will muster some 543bhp.

Lighter, nimbler…

Although the Balboni edition was a limited-series run of just 250 copies, Lamborghini has in fact continued to offer a rear-wheel drive Gallardo as a basic 'entry-level' model (if anything hailing from Sant'Agata can ever be said to be entry-level).
That LP 550-2 loses the front driveshafts, saving a few kilograms here and there, giving road testers a more slidey, pointy Gallardo experience.

Chevrolet Celebrates 100th Birthday by Selling 1 Millionth Cruze

Chevrolet is celebrating its 100th birthday this month. One of the highlights of the centennial celebration is hitting the 1 million global sales mark with its popular affordable small car, the Chevrolet Cruze.
The Cruze “is the fourth best-selling nameplate in its segment and the seventh best-selling nameplate overall,” Chevy says in a statment . The Cruze is sold in many global markets besides the U.S., including China, Russia, Canada, Spain and India.
The Detroit Free Press says the Cruze has been one of the major reasons for GM’s turnaround since receiving taxpayer-funded government bailouts.

“In its first 12 months of sales, the Chevrolet Cruze compact ranked 10th among all U.S. vehicle purchases,” the Detroit Free Press reports. “The car’s Lordstown, Ohio plant has been running three shifts plus overtime Saturdays since late spring and has still had difficulty meeting racing consumer demand.”
The Chevrolet Cruze is the successor to the Cobalt, which reviewers mostly disliked. The 2012 Chevy Cruze starts at $16,720. The popular Cruze ECO, which boasts engineering enhancements to slightly increase fuel economy over non-ECO models, starts at $19,245.
The Associated Press recently reported that in early 2013, GM will be adding a diesel to the Cruze’s engine lineup, and says that the diesel variant is expected to get about 50 mpg. Pricing for the diesel Cruze has not yet been announced, but it will also be built at the Lordstown, Ohio factory.