Honda’s CR-Z Mugen hits the open road (+video)

June 14th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Development of the Honda CR-Z Mugen concept has reached its conclusion and to celebrate Honda has released video footage of the supercharged hybrid model hitting the open road. The clip should send Honda fans into fever pitch before the models official launch at the upcoming 2011 Goodwood Festival of Speed in the UK next month.

This special CR-Z was born in a joint development between Honda UK and its in-house tuning shop Mugen Euro. To get any real performance out of the car, extensive mods were done to the 1.5-liter i-VTEC petrol engine including the introduction of a supercharger. Honda’s hybrid IMA system was also tweaked. The exact result in terms of output remains a mystery but is rumoured to be around the 150kW mark. Mugen has also pulled out 50kg of excess weight and made changes to the suspension, brake system, aerodynamics and lightened its unsprung weight too.

“Performance figures already look promising for this supercharged Honda CR-Z, as early tests with a prototype car based on a standard CR-Z and a mid-tune engine giving 0-60mph times around that of the Civic Type R,” Honda said in a statement.

To see Honda’s CR-Z Mugen in action, check out the clip below. Continue reading “Honda’s CR-Z Mugen hits the open road (+video)” »

Hulme CanAm invited to hill climb at Goodwood Festival

May 31st, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

New Zealand’s only supercar the Hulme CanAm has just been confirmed for display and a demonstration at this year’s Goodwood Festival of Speed event in the UK. Lord March extended a invitation to Hulme Supercars to bring its CanAm Spyder which will be one of just 55 invited supercars on display. It will also be the first Australasian designed and built supercar to be driven on the famous Goodwood hill-climb track.

The Hulme CanAm Spyder has been named in honour of Denny Hulme, New Zealand’s only Formula One World Champion and double CanAm Champion. It’s exclusive with only 20 examples to be built and is designed to give the driver an experience as close as possible, to driving a Formula One car legally on the road. Tipping the scales at just 980kg the CanAm uses high-tech carbon/titanium/kevlar composite chassis and composite body panels. It also features F1 styled down force generating aero package and push-rod suspension to provide superior road holding, handling and ride comfort. Continue reading “Hulme CanAm invited to hill climb at Goodwood Festival” »

McLaren MP4-12C makes screaming debut at Goodwood (+video)

July 8th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

McLaren has just made public a video of its brand new MP4-12C making its public debut at last weekend’s Goodwood Festival of Speed.

To honor its unveiling, Antony Sheriff, McLaren Automotive Managing Director, was the first person to drive up the hill on Friday. On Saturday and Sunday, Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton got their chance behind the wheel.

Sheriff said about the event, “The visitors to our stand were the perfect blend of car enthusiasts and potential customers; I’m delighted that we chose Goodwood Festival of Speed to unveil the 12C to the public. Two British Formula 1 World Champions were behind the wheel of the car as we led the field up the hill. A major landmark, delivered to McLaren’s high standards.”

The MP4-12C is a true supercar and features a twin-turbo 3.8-litre V8 pumping out 447 kW (600 bhp) and 599 Nm of torque. Power is put to the road by a seven-speed “Seamless Shift” dual-clutch transmission, this powertrain enables the car to accelerate from 0-100 km/h in less than 3.8 seconds and reach a top speed in excess of 300 km/h (186 mph).

Click on the box below to view the video of the MP4-12C’s first run. Continue reading “McLaren MP4-12C makes screaming debut at Goodwood (+video)” »

McLaren MP4-12C to debut at Goodwood Festival of Speed

July 1st, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

After months of videos, photos and various specifications the brand new McLaren MP4-12C will make its first public outing at the Goodwood Festival of Speed, which begins today and runs until  Sunday 4 July 2010. Event goers and enthusiasts will get more than just a walk around too, getting the chance to see McLaren’s new supercar in action as reigning F1 champion Jenson Button and 2008 F1 champion Lewis Hamilton will put the MP4-12C through its paces up Goodwood Hill on Saturday and Sunday respectively in the Supercar Run.

Jenson and Lewis had a test with an ‘XP Beta’ 12C prototype at Goodwood Motor Circuit eariler this year, but for the weekend’s festivities they will get behind the wheel of the more advanced in development VP9 Validation Prototype car.

According to McLaren the latest prototype version will be finished in the traditional orange hue and ride on lightweight forged alloy wheels in a Stealth finish, the car will be well-dressed with a carbon fibre splitter, diffuser, engine covers, engine bay panels and seat backs.

Powered by a mid-mounted 3.8 litre V8 with 600HP, the new MP4-12C is due to start selling early 2011. McLaren has not officially released pricing on the MP4-12C, but the company has said it will compete with cars in the ‘core’ high performance sports car sector, priced between $270,000-$370,000 NZD.

Jaguar celebrates 75th birthday with XKR 75 special

June 25th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Jaguar has just announced that its high-power XKR 75 special edition will make its public debut at this year’s Goodwood Festival of Speed held in the UK on July 2. The iconic company has developed the Jaguar XKR 75 to celebrate the brand’s 75th anniversary and like the name suggests it will be limited to just 75 units.

Motivation comes from the standard 5.0-litre supercharged engine but it has been tweaked to deliver 530Hp and 655Nm of torque to the rear wheels.  Top speed is limited to 280km/h and Jaguar claims it can rocket from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.4 seconds. By comparison the standard version of the model is limited to 250 km/h and requires 4.6 seconds to reach 100 km/h.

To assist with handling the Jaguar XKR 75 comes with an upgraded suspension package that offers better stability during cornering. This includes stiffer springs a 15mm lower ride height and re-tuned Adaptive Dynamics damper control software.

Other changes include an aerodynamic body kit with a unique front splitter, side sills extensions, a rear diffuser and larger rear spoiler, while the coupe also gets red brake callipers and 20-inch Vortex forged lightweight alloy wheels. The XKR 75 will be offered in a new Stratus Grey colour scheme with owners given the option to apply a unique body graphic that runs from the front bumper to the rear haunches.

Inside, the XKR 75′s is finished in Charcoal leather with ivory stitching and features a piano black fascia and centre console and Jet suedecloth headlining.

Since you want everybody to know about the extra power under the hood of the Jaguar XKR 75, the company is offering it with a new exhaust system that has “improved acoustics to match performance”.

Mike O’Driscoll, managing director, Jaguar Cars, had this to say, “The XKR 75 will provide owners with exclusivity, excitement and a hint of Jaguar’s great heritage. This is a fitting way to celebrate the sporting credentials of the XK marque in the 75th year of the Jaguar name.”

Hulme Supercars now taking orders for CanAm

May 27th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Hulme Supercars the builders of NZ’s first Supercar the Hulme CanAm has just announced plans for a 20 unit limited production run.

Named after Kiwi racing legend Denny Hulme the CanAm will be sold on a first-come, first-served basis with the option to purchase on offer for a £10,000 ($21,680 NZ) deposit.

The full purchase price of the Hulme CanAm will be fixed at £295,000, ($639,530 NZ) on receipt of an order, including delivery worldwide. The deposit is fully refundable if the option to purchase isn’t converted to a sale.

Jock Freemantle, Hulme Managing Director, explains, “Deposits will be held in a Trust account, pending a private viewing and driving experience of the car at or before the 2011 Goodwood Festival of Speed for those who have purchased an option to order. Following that, if anyone does not wish to proceed, the terms on which the deposit is paid will provide a guarantee that their total deposit will be returned immediately.”

The 20 customer cars will be coach-built and equipped to customer order, with deliveries commencing late 2011 and into 2012, the 20th anniversary of Denny Hulme’s death.

Any fat cat who confirms the purchase of a CamAm will be given two Air New Zealand Business Premier class return tickets to Auckland with one-week luxury accommodation, for their final fitting in the car and further road and circuit driving, before the car is then shipped to their chosen destination. All production cars will be numbered, with a guaranteed certificate of authenticity, and a 1/8 scale exact replica, finished in the same livery and specification, plus a full photographed dossier of the car’s build.

Continue reading “Hulme Supercars now taking orders for CanAm” »

Wacky Racers at Goodwood

December 19th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

Back in 2007 the Wacky Racers took to the Goodwood circuit in the UK at Goodwood Festival of Speed


Maserati Birdcage concept at Goodwood Festival of Speed 2008

December 19th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

What a way to celebrate your 75th birthday – Maserati brings out the Birdcage concept


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