Jaguar has staged a unique drone race to demonstrate how much room there is inside the luxurious long-wheelbase XJ saloon. High-speed drones piloted by professional racers flew through three cars during the race at Alexandra Palace, London, on a course marked out with 13 gates the same shape as an XJL rear door. Travelling at …
Summer is coming to an end in the UK. You can tell because we’re ramping up towards motorcycle shows and new models. And the end-of-season special offers are all appearing. For example, cheaper Ducati finance from £99 per month for a Supersport. And similar Autumn offers on the 2017 Ducati Scrambler, including the Cafe Racer and Desert Sled models, plus Ducati Performance vouchers with new Multistradas.
So, the Ducati Supersport is a pretty comfortable and usable sportsbike, with a 937cc, 113bhp V-twin engine returned from Hypermotard/Multistrada. And it’s priced competitively, with Marzocchi forks, a Sachs rear shock, Brembo calipers with ABS and lots more making it something you could use for commuting or longer trips as well as track days. All of that comes in at £11,635. But it sounds even more reasonable when you could be paying £99 per month.
That does come with some Ducati TriOptions financing rules. You’d need to pay a £2,634.40 deposit, pay £99 per month, and then cough up an optional final repayment of £6,176 to own the motorcycle outright. Which means you’d end up paying £12,374.40 after 37 months at 3.11% APR on the repayments, and 3.2% on the final lump sum.
Ready for a load more numbers? The 2017 Ducati Scrambler range are also part of the 3% TriOptions deals, including the newest Desert Sled and Cafe Racer models, for £99 per month.
As an example, the Ducati Scrambler Desert Sled would require a £1896.46 deposit. Followed by 37 months of £99 (2.91% interest), and a final lump sum of £5,013 (3% APR). It makes the total cost of a new Scrambler go from £9,535 to £10,113.46, but does mean you aren’t paying it all up front.
The various Scrambler versions share the same 803cc engine. But with different accessories and style for whichever look and purpose you prefer. The Desert Sled is obviously intended as more of an urban off-roader, capable of a bit of dirt and gravel. While the 1960’s inspired Cafe Racer will be at home on Tarmac. Probably parked up outside a coffee shop in Shoreditch or Soho.
Not keen on finance, or have money burning a massive hole in your pocket? Well Ducati still have some other offers for you. If you pick up a 2017 Ducati Multistrada 1200, you’ll get a £1000 Ducati Performance voucher to spend on accessories, equipment or helmets and clothing. And that’s now been extended to also give you a £750 voucher if you pick up a smaller 2017 Multistrada 950.
All of the Ducati TriOptions Finance and Ducati Performance voucher offers run until October 31st, 2017. And can be sorted via your local Ducati dealer.
The Matunes – Maureen & Mike – were on the field of 100 antiques, classics and sports cars to bring us highlights of one of the country’s top Concours.
The Radnor Hunt Concours d’Elegance limits itself to 100 motorcars each year while recognizing automotive legends. This year four were honored including Auburn-Cord-Duesenberg. Exemplifying those once mighty marques were Dave Markel’s ‘31 Cord L-29 Cabriolet and Sue & Mark Lankford’s ‘37 Cord 812SC Phaeton.
Team Penske’s ‘73 Porsche 911 RSR was a major attraction. These cars were featured in the first IROC Championship, taken by Mark Donohue. This very car would carry him to a Riverside win. Standing next to the car speaking to a television journalist is Mark’s son David. He is a racer of note in his own right, having both a North American Touring Car Championship and a class win at Le Mans to his credit.
The Race Cars of Roger Penske were featured at this year’s event. Among them was this ‘66 Chevrolet Corvette L88 coupe owned by Kevin Mackay. It’s too bad this car can’t talk. It could tell stories about a cold drive back from the Corvette plant in St. Louis to the Penske shop and then to Corvette legend Dick Guldstrand. Or about completing the Daytona 24 and taking a class win with flashlights taped to the hood replacing crash-damaged headlights!
Purists were appalled a few years back when perennial sportscar manufacturer Porsche, added SUVs and a sedan to its lineup. They may have been ignoring a little history, as Porsche once made tractors in addition to their more sporty offerings. Production was started before WWII and continued afterwards by manufacturers who leased the rights to the design. Radnor Hunt had a special class this year for vintage tractors and Daniel Magness brought his Porsche along.
From another time, comes the Delage sales slogan, the “Car with a Reputation”. The origins of that were supposedly in the saying that a Delage was the car you gave to your mistress. The lines of this ‘34 D8S Cabriolet with body by Fernandez & Daren certainly convey a sultry theme. Today it holds a place in the JWR Museum collection. Its past accolades include class awards on two occasions at Pebble Beach.
Fiat has unleashed a modern version of the legendary 124 Spyder Abarth and this is the car which inspired it – Gildo Torchia’s rare ‘73 Fiat 124 CSA Abarth. Conceived and built as a Homologation Special to qualify for Group 4 rally competition, it features an IRS, fiberglass hood and decklid and aluminum doors. Those wheels are real magnesium as opposed to aluminum. Under its hood is a slightly hotter version of Fiat’s DOHC Four.
Suzanne and John Campion traveled from Jacksonville, FL to show their ‘83 Lancia-Abarth 037 rally car. It has scored multiple wins and podiums in its life. Found in Prague, it is now safely ensconced in the Campion’s extensive collection of pro rally cars. Their trip to Radnor Hunt was rewarded with the Best of Show Sport trophy.
Diane & Don Meluzio showed their ‘61 Fiat Abarth Bialbero 1000 GT Coupe with body by Carrozzeria Abarth & Beccarris as part of a special Fiat Abarth class. After a successful racing career in Europe this car was sold to Team Roosevelt in the U.S. and continued its winning ways at Nassau and Sebring. As with most Abarths, the engine is diminutive but powerful, drawing 95 horsepower from 948 ccs. The Meluzios are to be congratulated for organizing the outstanding Abarth class.
It’s hard to find a bad angle on David Markel’s ‘32 Auburn 12-160A Speedster. From this view, your eye is drawn to the boat-tail styling, wide-whites, wire wheels and flawless paint. The Speedster houses a 160 horsepower, 391 cubic-inch, Twelve and a two-speed rear axle. Top speed is in the range of 110 mph.
Helen & Richard Harding wait patiently for their turn at the awards podium in their ‘28 Auburn 8-988 Speedster. Their stunning Navajo Red and Black car garnered the Best in Show award at the 21st Radnor Hunt Concours. The Auburn marque dates back to the turn of the 20th Century, later becoming part of Auburn – Cord – Duesenberg.
Chrysler was known for a little craziness during the Ponycar-Musclecar era as shown by Kim Barnes ‘69 Plymouth Barracuda “Mod Top” coupe. One’s eye is immediately drawn to the flower power vinyl roof until you notice the interior is upholstered in a similar pattern. Obviously, this was not for the shy or retiring, as borne out by the fact that only about 900 of these were made in 1969.
Thanks to Mike Whelan for his help with credentials. And to Founder & Chairman Mike Tillson, his staff, sponsors, presenters, judges, participants and volunteers for another great Concours.
Words & Photos by Maureen K. Matune & M. M. “Mike” Matune, Jr.
For more information about the event and its venue, please visit https://radnorconcours.org/
Rising in popularity in recent years, you could easily mistake hybrid cars as one the latest trend of mod cons to hit our roads! With cars such as Toyota Prius taking place in popular culture, it may surprise you to learn how long inventors have been exploring the idea of Hybrid cars. We are looking at the evolution of hybrid vehicles, in partnership with Go Green Leasing.
1830s- Robert Anderson builds the first electric car
The first ever electric vehicle was built and introduced between 1832-1839. Unlike other vehicles at the time Andersons invention did not run on literal horse power. Instead this four-wheeled electric carriage connected a motor to non-rechargeable power cells.
1901- Ferdinand Porsche builds the first ever hybrid car
The German automotive innovator creates the worlds first hybrid car in 1901. Named after the inventor, the Lorde-Porches Mixet hybrid combined an internal combustion engine with electric motors located in the wheel hubs.
1913- The takeover of gasoline cars
Gasoline- self-starter cars take over and dominate the automobile industry, while sales of electric and steam-powered cars drop in this period. This drop subsequently leads to a decline in hybrid innovation for 50 years.
1969- The plug-in car arrives
The late 60’s seen General Motors reveal several hybrids cars. The first vehicle revealed was the GM’s commuter XP512h which uses a gasoline/electric drivetrain. The company then went to rework the design and introduced the XP- 883 in 1969 with a two-cylinder engine and a plug that fit into a standard wall socket. The electric powered up to 16km after which gas engine would take over.
1990- NiMH batteries charge up the market
In 1967 the development of nickel-metal hydride rechargeable batteries began. The cells of hundreds of high-powered charge-discharge cycles. Thanks to the United States Advanced Battery Consortium (USABC) investing $90 million into the battery, the technology was later improved in the 80’s and was featured in electric and hybrid cars in the 90s.
Not so long ago, hybrids were the reserve of environmentally conscious school run mums, people living or working under the London congestion charge, and taxi drivers looking to save a bit of money on fuel.
However, with an ever-growing number of hybrids on the market, they are increasingly becoming a mainstream alternative to conventional petrol and diesel models. Hybrid is ditching the practical image and is slowly becoming the new cool kid on the block, with manufacturers such Mercedes, Mitsubishi and BMW releasing ground breaking models, the evolution of hybrid vehicles is set to keep breaking boundaries.
It’s really not that difficult to organize a competitive race series. But turning down money? Now that’s tough,blogs Stephen Cox.
The easy way to run a series is to have an official provider for everything from tires to body kits to engines. Mandatory components (spec parts) are frequently offered as a fix-all solution though in reality, costs are rarely contained. Remember, everyone at every step along the way has to make money. That means the series, parts manufacturers, distributors and on and on. Everyone gets a piece of the action and team owners are stuck with the ever-spiraling bills. The usual result is just what we see in the Indy Lights Series and Indycar – higher costs and lower car count.
All of this is a result of wrong thinking. The job of a race series is not to put a limit on how much money teams can spend. The job of a race series is to make sure that spending money doesn’t help. NASCAR’s Camping World Truck Series is in trouble because competitive engine packages are too expensive. Teams are losing money and closing up shop. NASCAR’s response is to consider a spec engine. Wrong thinking.
Take away their tires and everything else becomes elementary. NASCAR tires are enormously wide and offer a broad, sticky contact patch with the asphalt. The trucks reach tremendous speeds before they begin to lose adhesion and when they do, the drift is slight and nearly imperceptible to the average race fan. The racing isn’t that good. The tires are just too wide. If NASCAR trucks adopted a narrow, hard compound tire, the importance of horsepower would diminish considerably. Speeds would drop. The trucks would visibly slide on the racetrack and average race fans could see and appreciate the skill of the drivers.
Teams who spend fantastic sums on engine power would find themselves gaining little, if any, real advantage because without big, wide tires, it would be impossible to utilize all that engine power. The limiting factor in a truck’s speed would no longer be the engine; it would be the tires. The series should concern itself with reducing mechanical grip and to a lesser extent, aerodynamic grip. When the trucks begin to slide, the real racing begins and the unbridled supremacy of overpriced engines quickly fades.
The job of the series isn’t to limit horsepower or spending. NASCAR’s job is to limit the amount of horsepower that can be used in a race by eliminating traction. When that is achieved, the enormous horsepower and massive engine budgets will collapse of their own weight and teams will begin considering the Camping World Truck Series as a viable alternative again. That’s how to save truck racing.
Stephen Cox is Sopwith Motorsports Television Productions Driver, Super Cup Series & EGT Championship, and Co-Host, Mecum Auctions on NBCSN. Sponsored by http://www.mcgunegillengines.com/and http://www.boschett-timepieces.com/index.php