Created by SHAKEDOWN host Leo Parente and good friend of PH – J.F. Musial, Drive celebrates the culture of cars. “On the road, to the races, to the factories, to the studios — to the places you can’t go.” A gifted group of individuals, the Drive team looks to shift the direction of auto journalism and show the industry in a totally different light. The first series, “The 24 Hours of Nürburgring Experience”, takes us to what Leo calls the “Coachella of racing, the Burning Man of motorsports”. It’s a celebration for the people and this video covers the annual gathering from an amazing vantage point. Look for even more impressive production from Drive in the months ahead.
WIRED has a great read on how Aston Martin builds their One-77 Supercar. The British coachmaker cherns out exceptional vehicles in their Gadyon headquarters with the help of a small army of workers. The process was shifted drastically when they set out to make the One-77, ditching the assembly line approach and instead constructing a small structure and setting up seven workstations within where craftsmen and parts revolve around each vehicle. More on this over on Wired.
We’re still waiting on an official release but shots of the 2013 Mercedes-Benz SL have hit the internets. The German roadster has gotten a pretty heavy makeover as it now takes more inspiration from its smaller sibling, the SLK as well as the SLS AMG supercar. It’s a bit boxier and features a ton of changes on the front end in the form of a new upright grille and re-shaped light clusters. On the inside, we see a great blend of leahters and genuine wood and all the other finer details. We’re hearing the new SL has lost about 300 pounds over its predecessor which should benefit the car’s performance and handling. No word yet on pricing and availability but we’re certain some of this will released by the time it hits the showroom floor at the 2012 Detroit Motor Show.
The Bentley Continental GT and GTC V8 has been unveiled, both which dish out 500 horsepower and 481 lb-ft from a beefed up twin-turbo 4.0-liter engine. That creates a significant gap between this and the 631-hp Continental GT, essentially helping it get to its 40 percent improvement goal with respect to emissions and gas mileage. We’re not sure how much lower the pricetag will be as most of the details have been mute but we’re certain more info will drop when it hits the Detroit Motor Show floor.
BMW has unveiled the 6 Series Gran Coupe to compete with other four-door coupes on the market like the Mercedes-Benz CLS, Porsche Panamera and Audi A7. The Gran Coupe is powered by the German automaker’s N55 3.0-liter turbocharged inline six, which dishes out 315 horsepower and 330 lb-ft of torque. If that’s not enough, the 650i Gran Coupe should do the trick as it will come with rear-wheel drive or xDrive all-wheel drive and a twin-turbocharged 4.4-liter V8 that delivers 445 horsepower and 480 lb-ft. The design is 4.4 inches longer than its two-door counterpart and all the benefit goes to the folks in the back seats. No pricing has been unveiled yet but we’re sure to get additional details early next year when the beauty makes its public debut.
German auto tuner Brabus unveiled their rendition of the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Roadster last week at the Essen Motor Show, bringing forth a slew of enhancements including a 600-hp output, up from the stock 6.3-liter V8′s 563-hp. The exterior gets some refined upgrades like a carbon fiber kit that’s available in matte or high-gloss finishes with air vents, front spoiler, front fender, rear spoiler and a rear fascia all included. The Monoblock F “Platinum Edition” wheels look tremendous as well and come in several finishes. To take things next level, the tuner added a button-operated adjustable Ride Control suspension as well as a Front Lift System that can bring the front axle up 50mm.
Porsche has taken the covers off two new cabriolet versions of the seventh-generation 911 Carrera — the 911 Carrera Cabriolet and 911 Carrera S Cabriolet. Like its hardtop brethren, the 2012 911 Carrera cabriolet features aluminum-steel construction but with the addition of an all-new convertible top design, which looks to preserve the 911 coupe roof line.
The 911 Carrera cabriolets use the same engine as their coupe equivalents with the 911 Carrera cabriolet housing a 3.4 liter box V6 that dishes out 350 horses and the Carrera S coming with a 3.8- liter box engine that gives out 400 horsepower. On the road, the 911 Carrera cabriolet can go from 0-60 in about 4.4 seconds and hit a top-track-speed of 177 mph, with the 911 Carrera S cabriolet clocking a 0-60 time of 4.1 seconds and maxing out at 187 mph. The cars feature a longer wheelbase, wider front track and a host of other new features just introduced on the 911 Carrera and Carrera S models. The end result consists of two new cabriolet variants that offer a sportier drive, better handling and an all-around better experience. Both the 911 Carrera cabriolet and the 911 Carrera S cabriolet will hit showrooms in Spring 2012 with MSRPs of $97,300 and $108,000 respectively.
As the all new Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe Black Series made its way stateside just a few days ago for the L.A. Auto Show, a new commercial to accompany the new beautiful beast. The car’s not only blessed with track-orientated performance but it’s also got all the proper design cues to make this one of the most aggressive vehicles in the Mercedes-Benz lineup. See the commercial below.
Jaguar has taken the covers off the new 2012 XKR-S Convertible, the fastest drop-top Jaguar to ever hit the market. It’s packing the same supercharged 550 horsepower 5.0-liter V8 that’s in the coupe, and gives it a 0-60 mph time of 4.2 seconds. The XKR-S Convertible features a new front bumper with a wider and lower intake and a carbon fiber splitter. The rear wing is also a new addition to the car and features a carbon fiber insert. The interior got a few enhancements as well including performance seats that are trimmed in carbon leather. For those checking out this week’s LA Auto Show, be sure to look for this beauty on the showroom floor.