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Archive for the ‘Exotic Cars’ Category

Can Kia Compete With Porsche?

December 9th, 2014

Porsche Panamera Exclusive

This is a crazy world in which we live.

If you’ll recall, our planet was nearly knocked off its axis by the outcry of Porsche purists who derided the loss of the brand when Porsche announced the four-door Panamera.

Apparently all has been forgiven, because the latest, and most expensive, Panamera to date has just sold out. At over $300,000 each.

As if the Panamera weren’t big and bloated enough, this ultra-luxurious version has been stretched even more and priced out of the stratosphere, but still managed to sell all 100 copies in less than 48 hours.

In the meantime, Kia has taken note of the German success and wants to replicate it on a budget.

Crazy, right?

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So Wrong: 2015 Corvette Z06 Burnout

December 8th, 2014

2015 Corvette Z06

On this Monday morning I’d like to quickly summarize what’s wrong with this country in one video.

Supercars are fun and powerful—I get it. They can instill confidence in a guy or gal that might not otherwise have a ton, and they can convey a message of extreme financial success.

Supercars are masterpieces of the automakers that craft them and often combine the very best of style, technology and performance, then wrap it all in a carbon fiber shell. These are cars to be driven hard, pushed to their limits, and enjoyed as the wonders they are.

But they aren’t for kids.

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Do We Really Need a New Ford GT?

December 4th, 2014

2005-ford-gt

The last couple of days have been intense for fans of the Ford GT. Rumors are strong that the much-loved supercar could come racing back, with a debut coming as early as next month at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

Why would Ford want to get back into the  supercar business? There are plenty of reasons but the biggest two, in my opinion, are the Corvette and the Viper.

Arch rivals Chevrolet and Dodge both have supercars, and the closest Ford currently gets is with the Shelby Mustang, which admittedly is almost as good. Almost.

In the game of car competition, though, “almost” doesn’t win many sales. The timing is right for the GT to come back, but does it make sense?

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Sports Cars: Dead or Coming Out of Hibernation?

November 12th, 2014

porsche-911-gt3

There are a couple of quotes we need to address today. The first is from Automotive News:

“The sports car market is roughly half of what it used to be,” Ian Robertson, BMW’s head of sales, said in an interview at the manufacturer’s headquarters in Munich. “Post-2008, it just collapsed. I’m not so sure it’ll ever fully recover.”

In Europe and North America, the car’s role as a status symbol has diminished, with SUVs and crossovers becoming ever more popular.

The second quote expands on the first, and comes to us by way of The Truth About Cars:

Increased congestion, urbanization and a demonization of speeding (backed by harsh, if not draconian penalties) has made the notion of a sports car an outmoded one for many people. Even the latest 991 Porsche 911 GT3 has abandoned the manual transmission.

Do we, the sports car fans of the world, have something to worry about?

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You Can’t Own a Ferrari Sergio, But You Could Own Ferrari

October 30th, 2014

Ferrari Sergio

It’s probably the strangest Ferrari ever built.

The Ferrari Sergio looks like it’s facing the wrong direction—it has the rear haunches of a Veyron and the front dimensions of a poorly designed Hot Wheels model.

The irony behind the Sergio’s odd design is that it was built to honor Sergio Pininfarina, the legendary designer who created many of the trademark Ferrari shapes.

Even crazier, Ferrari will build only 6 copies of the Sergio, each of which is already spoken for, at a price that probably exceeds $2.5 million each.

Needless to say you can’t buy one. But soon you’ll be able to buy a part of Ferrari itself, as the company will be sold out from Fiat’s ownership. Sort of.

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No, Porsche Shouldn’t Build an Entry Level Car

October 13th, 2014

porsche_718

Regarding the possibility of an entry level roadster, Porsche North America’s CEO Detlev von Platen recently said,

We’re not talking about entry models at Porsche. Our entry model is our pre-owned program.

Those words have dashed the dreams of many Porsche hopefuls who had hoped to get into a new Porsche for the price of a loaded Honda.

Sorry folks. If you want a new Porsche, you’re going to have to work a little harder; which is the way it should be.

Some people, though, disagree.

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Favorites From the 2014 Paris Motor Show

October 3rd, 2014

Mercedes-AMG GT

The Paris Motor Show is known to inflict shock on unprepared auto journalists. It’s here that automakers like to unleash their inner crazy and debut concepts designed to capture the world’s attention.

Yesterday was when most automakers unveiled their wares, and while there were a few surprises, there wasn’t anything that left the world speechless.

Honda showed some chops with its most extreme hot hatch ever, Jaguar and Mercedes-Benz debuted exactly what was expected, but Lamborghini seems to have stolen the show with a surprising new direction.

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Celebrating 60 Years of Ferrari Design

September 17th, 2014
2014 Ferrari F12 Berlinetta

2014 Ferrari F12 Berlinetta

In 1954, America changed forever.

This wasn’t because of a traumatic event or even something that seemed all that significant when it happened. The impact, though, has spread across six decades and left a trail of inspiration and breathlessness, along with plenty of burned rubber and lofty aspirations.

It was in 1954 that Ferrari formed an alliance with the North American Racing Team and began selling cars in the United States. Over the next 60 years, Ferrari won countless races and produced some of the most exhilarating and beautiful automobiles to ever scorch the pavement.

With a 60-year anniversary car debuting next month, let’s take a moment and look back at some of the most influential Ferrari designs in U.S. history.

First, though, I want to share what little info there is about this 60th anniversary car. AutoEvolution says,

In all likelihood, it is expected that this car will be based on the Ferrari F12 Berlinetta, and it will add an exclusive exterior and interior design to account for the price jump of almost $3 million; a standard 2014 F12 Berlinetta starts at $318,888. Among the upgrades include a distinctive blue paint scheme with white stripes acting as a throwback to the Ferraris raced by the North American Racing Team (NART) from the 1960s through the 1980s. Big changes are also expected inside this car.

For $3 million, it had better be special! Not that it matters, because word is that only 10 vehicles will be produced and all are already sold. With that in mind, here are my favorite Ferrari designs from each decade:

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The Opposite Ends of Mercedes-Benz

September 10th, 2014

Mercedes AMG GT

Should You Buy a Used Unimog?

What’s a Unimog, you ask? Well, if we look to the reliable and almost-always-accurate Wikipedia, we’ll learn that Unimog is a range of multi-purpose 4-wheel-drive trucks produced by Mercedes-Benz.

With diesel power, high ground clearance, a flexible frame and a powerful off-road ability, Unimogs can be found in places where other motor vehicles dare not go.

That includes the freeways of Los Angeles, where one very famous Unimog once lived.

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Has the Corvette Finally Arrived as a Supercar?

August 27th, 2014

2015 Chevrolet Corvette Z06

In all my years on this planet, never, not once, have I done a double head turn to check out a Corvette.

Corvettes just aren’t my thing. I see them on almost every outing, whether they be models from the early ’60s on the way to a classic car show, models from the ’80s and ’90s being driven by aging gearheads or later models piloted by post-midlife-crisis 50-somethings.

Corvettes are nearly as common as Hondas around here, and their design has never left me with the desire to exert the necessary energy to look twice. In fact, I usually try to look away as soon as possible, because I’m completely turned off by the Corvette and everything it represents.

So earlier this week, when my heart gave an extra jump as I turned a corner and saw a sexy red supercar parallel parked downtown, I quickly turned my head to look again, then knew my lifetime streak was over.

I had looked twice at a Corvette.

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