• Top 10 Prestige Cars to Rent

    For many people, renting a vehicle is a matter of convenience, whether it’s exploring a foreign country, moving house, test driving a car to get a feel of it before you buy it, or simply getting from A to B.  However, car rental can also afford you the opportunity to get behind the wheel of the type of motor that’s out of reach for the majority, such as the latest supercar or a vintage vehicle from the 1930s. Although such vehicles are not typically listed as available for hire there are companies who can supply them on request.

    In this article we take a closer look at 10 cars that offer that extra touch of class for your special occasion, whether it’s a wedding, a graduation or simply an event where you want to make a big impression.

    1. Bentley GTC Continental

    Bentley_Continental_GTC_Speed_20090720_front-1One of the most refined and elegant of British cars, the Bentley GTC Continental is a soft top tourer that offers a great driving experience alongside classic looks and elegance. It’s been available since mid 2003, and features a series of different models and configurations.

    The twin-turbocharged V8 outputs more than 500 bhp while managing some impressive eco-credentials, but those looking for a car to make a statement will be happy with any of the magnificent machines available. Considering the vehicle’s solidity and size, it can speed to 60 mph in a touch under 4 and a half seconds, placing it firmly in the top bracket of rapid luxury cars. With an 8 speed gearbox and electronic management, the GTC Continental offers a smooth, easy drive with some serious power at your disposal.

    The Bentley name often suggests a certain stuffiness belonging to an older era, but this latest offering is anything but bland or dated. It has sporty features and contemporary fittings, such as LED lights and a spoiler, while its internal fittings retain the luxury and class you’d expect from this marque. With elegant dark wood trim and classic leather interior furnishings, the Bentley is a car that offers thrills and luxury in equal measure.

    2. McLaren MP4-12C

    If you are lucky enough to get your hands on one, the McLaren MP4-12C may just be the most thrilling rental car available. Hitting the roads in 2011, more than a decade after the F1 concept car was withdrawn from production, the MP4-12C has added to McLaren’s growing legacy as manufacturer of the greatest supercars of the modern era. With a staggering top speed well in excess of 200 mph and a 0-60 time of 3.1 seconds, the power and visceral impact of this 620 bhp supercar are near impossible to beat.

    The two door coupe is blessed with astonishing 21st Century looks too, its carbon fibre shell styled with sleek curves and lines to give it a dynamic kerb appeal. Inside, the manufacturer has created a so-called driver zone that is space age in appearance and functionality. With an abundance of safety features and superlative road handling, the limitless power is well controlled, with great performance throughout the gears. It is built for track days and racing, of course, but to make an impact on a special occasion, the throaty roar and magnificent looks of the MP4-12C are very difficult to surpass.

    3. Mercedes S Class

    German automotive giant Mercedes has produced many great cars over the years, and the modern S Class is up there with the best. It’s ideal for weddings and special events, either as a fitting alternative or stylish accompaniment to the more traditional Rolls Royce or Bentley. With loads of interior space, luxury finishes and great kerb appeal, the S Class blends German efficiency with elegance and refined touches.

    In driving terms, the S Class is excellent. Superb suspension and handling mean that the cars are a pleasure to drive, while the range of engines offers power and precision driving. The German giant has even built a range of frugal diesels that can top 60 mpg if you’re seeking economy to go with the high levels of refinement. While the S Class won’t rival a supercar for speed or acceleration, the wonderful ride and fantastic looks more than compensate. This is a grown up car that will thrill with its drive experience every bit as much as its sportier competitors.

    4. Aston Martin DB range

    A name synonymous with both the golden age of British motoring and the modern era, various generations of Aston Martin have turned heads as iconic cars driven by James Bond. From the 1960s DB5 to the exclusive DB10, the manufacturer has offered vehicles which scream style and cool from the movie screen to the open road. Hiring a “Bond car” will give you a terrific Aston Martin driving experience and one which is guaranteed to appeal to almost every motorist.

    The DB5 boasts classic lines and a kerb appeal that’s hard to top, while the DB9 adds contemporary supercar looks to the range. The latest models boast top speeds above 190 mph, while retaining the instant recognition and stylish touches honed from more than 100 years of manufacturing history. Aston Martin is a worldwide icon, and the chance to drive one of the classic models is hard to resist; with effortless handling and luxurious interior touches, arriving in one of the DB range is a great way to make a superb first impression. You can enjoy an Aston Martin Experience by

    5. Lotus Elise S1

    The smallest car on this list, the Lotus Elise series 1 punches far above its weight when it comes to striking looks and incredible performance, making it a brilliant car to take out on the open road or track. The car was first released in the late 1990s and yet boasts a look perfectly suited to today’s motorist. It is extremely light, its aluminium chassis and pared down design bring the car in at a fraction over 730 kg.

    Unlike many of the other cars on this list, the Lotus doesn’t boast huge power, but it doesn’t need to – the S1 can hit 125 mph from a modest 1.8 litre engine and just 118 bhp. Road handling is magnificent, making this a driver’s dream; it sounds and feels vastly more powerful than its bare numbers would suggest, and offers a stunning visual to boot. It is minimalist inside and offers far fewer refinements than competing vehicles, but then very few of its rivals can offer the sheer enjoyment of the S1 out on the road.

    6. Lamborghini Gallardo LP560-4 Spyder

    Supercars don’t come much cooler than this. The Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder offers a sumptuous performance and driving experience with a classic Italian look that will turn heads on and off the road. Simply firing up the engine reveals the delights to come, and with a top speed over 200 mph the Gallardo backs up its kerb appeal with all the power and blistering speed you could need.

    The V10 engine puts out over 550 bhp, and with a zero to 60 time of less than 4 seconds, the Gallardo is extremely quick off the mark. However, the superb lines and fabulous Lamborghini looks mean that this car will get everyone’s attention even at low speeds. The driving position is perfect, and you’re surrounded with stylish touches and sumptuous finishes at every turn. With an array of safety features, such as stability control, handling the Gallardo is straightforward, and the easy power gives the driver an unmissable experience. This is simply one of the finest supercars ever produced, and one that’s well worth experiencing, even for a few hours.

    7. Morgan Plus 4

    A remnant of the classic motoring age, when gentlemen took to the roads in style. The Morgan Plus 4 is a beautiful car, with the ultimate in post-War visual appeal complemented by a great driving experience and no shortage of fun. The car was initially produced in 1950, and can top 100 mph with ease. Its four cylinder engine is not sluggish either, capable of reaching 60 mph in under 10 seconds; impressive performance in a car of its vintage.

    There have been various models of the Plus 4 over the years, including a version released in the early 2000s. However it’s the older models which offer the most striking appeal; two seater motoring doesn’t come much finer than this. Of course there are few of the refinements of the modern luxury car, but the timeless looks, smooth ride, and surprisingly good performance outweigh any lack of hi-tech features. The on-road experience is excellent, and the car itself makes a fantastic statement, epitomising British motoring elegance.

    8. Porsche 911 997 Turbo Cabriolet

    The 997 is one of the newest versions of the classic 911 series, and has a power and style all of its own. From the blistering sub 4 second 0-60 time to the top speed above 190 mph, this modern supercar can rival the thrills of any of its competitors. With its distinctive shape and guttural sounds pouring out from the 470 bhp engine, the 997 Turbo Cabriolet is a real eye-catcher. There are few motoring thrills that offer more appeal than taking this classic sports car out for a spin and putting the foot down on a clear road.

    As with many cars on the list, the 911 is a car best enjoyed solo or with great company on the open road; its tight interior and low road position add to the enjoyment and make driving this superb sports car an absolute joy. Forget practicality and convenience, this is one rental car that is to be savoured for its driving experience alone. You’ll get plenty of admiring glances to boot, though mainly from drivers trailing in your wake!

    9. Ferrari 458 Spider

    Another in a long line of superlative Italian sportscar manufacturers, the Ferrari name has been synonymous with driving thrills since the late 1920s. Its founder, Enzo Ferrari, passed on his dream of racing glory to establish what would become one of the world’s premier automotive powerhouses.

    The 458 Spider was named as Supercar of the Year in 2009, and with good reason; a top speed of 202 mph and a blisteringly quick acceleration to 60 mph in a fraction over 3 seconds give it class leading performance levels, while the brilliant steering, road handling and ride are as good as you’ll find in any motor car. Its visual impact is stunning, a tribute both to the legions of Ferrari designers and to the added input of racing legend Michael Schumacher.

    To fully enjoy the experience, put down the roof on the convertible 458 Spider; the top down motoring afforded by this Italian gem is hard to beat. It is guaranteed to impress on a special event or occasion, and is an equally brilliant car to enjoy alone.

    10. Rolls Royce Phantom

    Of course no list of prestige rental cars would be complete without the Rolls Royce Phantom, a classic icon dating back to its first model in 1925. Perhaps the most desirable car for British weddings, the Phantom not only oozes style and sophistication but has practicality into the bargain, with acres of room inside and wide doorways making it ideal for a graceful entrance and exit. Whilst many couples and parties opt to pay extra for a chauffeur, the latest incarnation of the Phantom is also a terrific car to drive yourself, with more than 450 bhp at your disposal and a powerful 6.8 litre engine under the hood.

    With every possible added touch of luxury, the modern Rolls Royce Phantom is a blissful driving machine, while passengers can relax in the ultimate style and comfort that this magnificent vehicle offers. Each vehicle is hand-built and fitted and no two models are identical, thanks to bespoke features and touches which make every Phantom unique. Few cars make as dramatic an entrance or leave as big an impression as the Spirit of Ecstasy-led Phantom.

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  • LAMBORGHINI HURACÁN PERFORMANTE: FAST & FURIOUS!

    LAMBORGHINI HURACÁN PERFORMANTE: FAST & FURIOUS!

    Just one year from its debut at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show, the Huracán Performante has already taken the production car lap-time records on eight international circuits.

    LAMBORGHINI HURACÁN PERFORMANTE: FAST & FURIOUS! LAMBORGHINI HURACÁN PERFORMANTE: FAST & FURIOUS! The record times were set during press trials carried out by prestigious magazines on their circuits of choice: 03/07/2017    Vairano (Quattroruote) –1’09”.43

    03/08/2017    Balocco (Auto) –2’38”.07

    29/08/2017    Contidrom (Auto Zeitung) –1’29”.6

    25/09/2017    Mira (Autocar) –1’05”,03

    28/09/2017    Wroughton (The Grand Tour) –1’16”.8

    09/10/2017    Boxberg (Auto Motor und Sport) – 42”.3

    06/11/2017    Le Mans Bugatti (Sport Auto) –1’42”.49

    14/11/2017    Anneau du Rhin (Sport Auto) – 57”.5

    The new records, which confirm the Performante as one of the fastest production super sports cars in the world, are proof of the model’s exceptional track features including the ALA System (Lamborghini Active Aerodynamics), which last year won the Autocar Innovation Award. Thanks to the use of innovative ultra-lightweight materials such as Forged Composites, providesaero-vectoring, a dedicated chassis setup, all-wheel drive, and further powertrain enhancements, the Performante delivers incredibly high track performance, while at the same time maintaining the most engaging and dynamic road driving qualities.

    LAMBORGHINI HURACÁN PERFORMANTE: FAST & FURIOUS!The Performante is equipped with a naturally aspirated 5.2-liter V10 engine with enhanced torque of 600 Nm at 6,500 rpm and output of 640 horsepower at 8,000 rpm. It accelerates from 0 to 62 mph in 2.9 seconds and can reach a top speed of over 201 mph.

    For the latest details on the Lamborghini Huracán Performante, please visit https://www.lamborghini.com/en-en/models/huracan/huracan-performante

    The post LAMBORGHINI HURACÁN PERFORMANTE: FAST & FURIOUS! appeared first on Car Guy Chronicles.

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  • 2018 Triumph Bonneville T120 £500 Personalisation Offer

    The modern 1200cc Bonnie is a decent and versatile motorcycle with classic looks. And if you’re thinking of purchasing one, there’s a 2018 Triumph Bonneville T120 £500 personalisation offer running until the end of March 2018. The deal means that you still pay the usual retail price, but you get a £500 contribution from Triumph to put towards accessories, clothing, finance or insurance from the manufacturer.

    2018 Triumph Bonneville T120 £500 Personalisation Offer

    So it’s not quite like £500 off the purchase price. But it works just as well if you were planning on buying from the range of official add-ons. And there’s more than 160 options to choose from. So that includes Vance & Hines chrome pea-shooter style slip-on silencers, leather stitched seats, chrome clutch, alternator and throttle body embellishers or a 4-bar Triumph tank badge.

    Alternatively you can use it to buy from the range of official Triumph clothing, put it towards your bill from Triumph Insurance, or reduce your finance.

    Paul Lilly, General Manager, Triumph Motorcycles UK & Ireland, said: “This is a great opportunity to add a personal touch to the timeless, iconic character of the Bonneville T120. Whether it is accessories, something from our branded clothing range or a contribution to insurance or finance, there has never been a better time to get on a new T120.”

    2018 Triumph Bonneville T120 £500 Personalisation Offer 2

    The 2018 Triumph Bonneville T120 will cost you £10,300 on the road, and comes with the latest 1200cc engine offering an increase in power. Max power is 79bhp at 6,550rpm, and max torque is 105 Nm at 3,100rpm. Plus you get modern goodies to compliment the more traditional style, which include ABS, ride-by-wire, traction control, two riding modes, LED lights, heated grips and even a USB charging socket. They didn’t have that in the 1960s.

    It’s also a boost for the ‘standard’ T120 given the recent launch of a number of new models including the 2018 Triumph Bonneville Speedmaster, and the 2018 Triumph Bonneville Bobber Black. The 2018 Triumph Bonneville T120 £500 Personalisation Offer runs until the end of March 2018.

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  • New Evotech KTM 390 Duke Parts For Better Protection

    Evotech Performance has been around for a while, producing a range of aftermarket parts from their Lincolnshire base. And they’ve now turned their attention to the KTM 390 Duke. As a smaller 375cc A2 learner legal motorcycle it’s not only a great motorcycle. It’s also one that appeals to younger and newer riders. So it makes sense that the new Evotech KTM 390 Duke parts will give the bike more crash protection, as well as looking good.

    The parts will all fit the 2017-2018 model year, and can all be bought separately as required. And Evotech kit is used by race teams from BSB to MotoGP and the Isle of Man TT, as well as on special projects by the likes of Guy Martin. So you can probably put a fair bit of confidence in it doing the job. There are actually 8 new Evotech KTM 390 Duke parts and accessories to run through, so sit back and get your credit card out.

    The Evotech KTM 390 Duke 2017-2018 Tail Tidy:

    Starting at the rear is a tail tidy for the KTM 390 Duke which has a clean and uncluttered finish. You keep the original license plate light and indicators to make it easy to fit. But the Concealed Designed Wire Technology (CDWT) approach means that you hide everything away, but with additional plate mounts, reflector and LED lights included where international markets might require them.

    Evotech KTM 390 Duke Tail-Tidy

    The Evotech Tail Tidy is made from CNC-machined lightweight aircraft grade aluminium with a black powder coated finish. And the result is a weight of 760g. It costs £124.99 with all the required fixings included.

    The Evotech KTM 390 Duke Radiator Guard:

    The radiator guard will give you protection from debris and damage. But the hexagonal matrix pattern means you still get the best possible airflow to keep things cool. Like the tail tidy, it’s constructed from aircraft quality aluminium and finished in black powder coat with the edges deburred.

    Evotech KTM 390 Duke Radiator Guard

    The Evotech Radiator Guard for the KTM 390 Duke fits to the existing mounting points, doesn’t need any modifications, and comes with all the fittings you’ll require. It weighs 120g, and will cost you £54.98.

    The Evotech KTM 390 Duke Rectifier Guard:

    Next up is the Rectifier Guard, which might look pretty similar to the radiator version. That’s because it has the same pattern to let air in while also stopping as much damage as possible. And you’re once again looking at high quality aluminium machined to fit with black powder coating, and no need for modification to the existing mounting points on your 390 Duke.

    Evotech KTM 390 Duke Rectifier Guard

    It costs just £29.99, and weighs 80g. And the Rectifier Guard comes with replacement stainless steel fasteners included.

    The Evotech KTM 390 Duke Crash Protectors:

    It’s a sad fact that newer riders tend to have more accidents. Hopefully most will be minor low-speed incidents which don’t injure more than pride, but can have a bit impact on your bike. So the Evotech Performance Crash Protectors have an anodised aluminium core, polyurethane washers and injection moulded nylon to protector your motorcycle and bodywork from getting damaged by contact.

    Evotech KTM 390 Duke Crash Protectors

    You don’t need to modify your KTM for them to fit, and they come with replacement fasteners with spacers for everything to come together without any problem. They do add 1.38kg of weight, but it’s worth it to save the time and cost of damage, for just £109.99. And if you need individual parts, they’re also available via Evotech Performance.

    The Evotech KTM 390 Duke Front Spindle Bobbins:

    Use the original front fork mounting points to add the high quality nylon spindle protection bobbins. They weight 80g and feature anodised internal aluminium spacer mounts.

    Evotech KTM 390 Duke Front Spindle Bobbin

    Subtle and effective, the bobbins will cost you just £25, including the supplied fasteners.

    The Evotech KTM 390 Duke Exhaust Hanger:

    Want to add even more style to your KTM? What about a race-style aluminium exhaust hanger which also ditches both of the original pillion footpegs if you don’t plan on letting passengers come for a ride? It’s CNC machined and black powder coated with chamfered leading edges for a factory style finish.

    Evotech KTM 390 Duke Exhaust Hanger

    To always have an excuse to ride solo, and to get the race look will cost you £44.99, and the hanger has a weight of 240g, which will mean a decent saving once the pillion pegs have gone into the garage or bin.

    The Evotech KTM 390 Duke Paddock Stand Bobbins:

    There’s a reason why people use paddock stands, even if their motorcycle came with a sidestand. It can make maintenance a lot easier and safer, as well as keeping your bike stored securely. Balancing a bike on a sidestand to spin the rear wheel and lube the chain only takes one slip to turn into a bit of a disaster, for example.

    Evotech KTM 390 Duke Paddock Stand-Bobbin

    Paddock stands aren’t too expensive, but bikes rarely come with any method to use them as standard. So the Evotech Performance Paddock Stand Bobbins come with mounting bolts to secure the two-piece nylon outers and stainless steel inner sleeve with bespoke spacers. They weigh 120g and cost £25.

    The Evotech KTM 390 Duke Toe Guard:

    Another part which will make your KTM look a bit more trick, as well as potentially helping safety, the toe guard will reduce the chance of your lower leg coming into contact with the chain and drive line. And it means a carbon fibre ‘shark fin’ profiled guard like racers use, along with the included stainless steel mounting fasteners.

    Evotech KTM 390 Duke Toe Guard

    The Evotech Performance Toe Guard will cost you £44.99 and weighs 140g.

    Even More Evotech KTM 390 Duke Parts

    So that little lot will definitely make a difference to how your KTM 390 Duke looks. And there are still more products available which weren’t described in detail, such as the Evotech KTM 390 Duke mirror extensions, if you’re struggling to see what’s behind you. They do make the mirrors look more like the antennae of an insect, but taller riders will find them invaluable to keep an eye on following traffic.

    Evotech KTM 390 Duke Front Straight

    And the end result of all the Evotech KTM 390 Duke parts is a bit more style, and a lot more crash protection. Which sounds like a decent plan if you want to keep your mini-Duke in good nick. Or take it on track and minimise the risks to bike and rider.

    Evotech KTM 390 Duke Parts

    Time to get the credit card out…

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  • MARK II: CHEVY’S MYSTERIOUS 427!

    MARK II: CHEVY’S MYSTERIOUS 427!

    The real 427 Mystery Motor, unlike the Z11, was not available in a car, or to the public. You had to have serious NASCAR cred to get one of the 20 built.

    MARK II: CHEVY’S MYSTERIOUS 427!MARK II: CHEVY’S MYSTERIOUS 427!In the 1960s, Semon “Bunkie” Knudsen always seemed to be one step ahead of GM Chairman Fred Donner’s anti-racing missives. While running Pontiac, he had supported the Super-Duty Group that later, after he left, managed to get 421 Catalina Lightweights to drag racers before the axe fell. Then he moved on to Chevrolet in 1961 and supported the RPO Z11 drag racing and clandestine NASCAR 427 Mystery Motor projects. Both pure racing programs survived even though GM was officially out of racing. In the case of the Mystery Motor, everything was conducted through Chevrolet’s backdoor.

    The 427 Mystery Motor’s real function was that of a “bridge” between the old school W-Series 348-409 and the next-gen 1965 Mark IV big-block. It used the same bore/stroke block – 4.31-inch bore and 3.65-inch stroke – as the Z11 engine. But that’s where the similarity ends. Unlike W-Series engines with combustion chambers in the cylinders, the Mark II NASCAR engine utilizes canted and staggered-valve (Porcupine) heads with conventional chambers. This style head debuted in production 396-427 Mark IV big-block engines, affectionately dubbed “Rat Motors” by enthusiasts!

    Although developed primarily as a NASCAR race engine, Chevrolet did produce a singular variant for street applications, shown here with Ken Kayser, right, who had been Business Case Manager for the Mark IV big-block at Tonawanda. The Mark II in street trim, displayed for many years at GM’s Tonawanda, NY engine plant, was built to justify the expenses of building a racing-only engine. It is possible that at some point the project was referenced internally as RPO Code Z33. That would have been done only to disguise the 427 as an optional production engine so as not to attract unwanted attention. Interestingly, the Mark II engine was not produced at Tonawanda, the facility best known for Mark IV 396-427-454 engines.

    MARK II: CHEVY’S MYSTERIOUS 427!Part of the mystery surrounding the Mark II engine can be attributed to its planned public debut on February 24, 1963 at the Daytona 500. The first couple of engines were shipped to Smokey Yunick for use in Chevys being prepared for the 500. Junior Johnson and Johnny Rutherford were two high-profile racers originally slated to run this engine. However, Mark II 427s were in two Z06 Corvettes competing in the 250-mile American Challenge Cup, at Daytona on February 16! This was a race for sports cars and one-offs, not NASCAR stockers. Few people at the time realized that two of the split-window Sting Rays in the Challenge Cup had Mark IIs under their hoods. They were actually the first big-block Corvettes.

    Smokey Yunick prepared two Corvettes like NASCAR Grand National stockers and installed Mark II engines, sparked by magnetos with HD three-speed transmissions. Scheduled drivers were Junior Johnson and Rex White. During practice, Junior was not comfortable with how his Corvette was handling at 160 mph and decided not to drive. Bill Krause replaced him and went on to finish Third. He beat other Corvettes, Ferrari GTOs and Porsche Carrera Abarth GTLs. Paul Goldsmith driving a Pontiac Super-Duty 421 Tempest, won the three-hour race, followed by A.J. Foyt driving a Nickey Corvette! Bunkie was not unhappy!

    MARK II: CHEVY’S MYSTERIOUS 427!Johnny Rutherford driving Smokey’s #13 car finished 9th, the best finish for a Mystery-motored Chevy. Rutherford lapped the track at 165.14 mph, setting a closed course record. A broken distributor in the #3 Ray Fox/Holly Farms Impala sidelined Junior. Junior won 7 of the 55 Grand National races in 1963, including the Charlotte 400 in October. With no factory support for the engine, the car was parked in 1964. Junior’s iconic Impala, as last raced, survives today. It’s at RK Motors, Charlotte, NC,  https://www.rkmotors.com/

    The 427 Chevy Mystery Motor, along with other super-high-performance cars and engines from the period including the Z11 Chevy drag cars, are showcased in Marty Schorr’s new book, DAY ONE,  https://www.amazon.com/Day-One-Automotive-Journalists-Muscle-Car/dp/0760352364/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1493561421&sr=1-1&keywords=Day+One+by+Martyn+L.+Schorr

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