Tag Archives: photo

BMW M6 in both Coupe and Cabriolet Spyshots. #nurburgring

BMW unveiled its 6 Series Coupe concept at this year’s Paris Motor Show, giving us a preview at what the next-generation Sixer will look like when it debuts sometime next year. Fear not, M6 fans – this latest set of spy shots clearly shows that BMW has every intention of giving its latest grand tourer the high-power treatment.

Aside from the revised styling of the next-gen 6 Series, we can clearly see a set of large wheels wrapped in fat tires, not to mention the M-signature quad-exhaust pipes out back. Expect the M6 to use the same twin-turbo 4.4-liter V8 setup that will debut in the new M5 sedan, meaning power numbers should be somewhere around 560 horsepower and 530 pound-feet of torque. It all sounds delicious, and we can’t wait to see how the M treatment looks on the even sleeker coupe.

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Jaguar D-Type Prototype at the 2010 Old Timer Grand Prix #nurburgring

Even among D-Types this is a unique car. It is the factory prototype for the machine which set the seal on the Jaguar Le Mans legend, culminating in a hat-trick of victories from 1955 to 1957. With its advanced monocoque construction and beautiful low-drag body, it maximised the potential of the XK engine, offering over 170mph while remaining tractable enough to be driven on the road. Indeed the works cars were driven from Coventry to Dover, onto the ferry, and then down the main roads to the French circuit.

One of the production units of the above prototype fetched £2,2 million at Bonhams auction in 2008, So the valuation of this unit must be staggering.

Although the C-Type had decisively beaten Europe’s best at Le Mans in 1951 and 1953, the threat from Mercedes-Benz and Ferrari made it clear to Jaguar Team Manager ‘Lofty’ England and engineer Bill Heynes that they needed a new car. This was the result – stronger, lighter and faster than the C-type, yet powered by a 270bhp development of the same XK engine. This meant that private owners could easily buy and maintain these cars, which offered a useful back-up to the works team.

This prototype was completed in May 1954, and immediately travelled to France for the Le Mans test session where development driver Norman Dewis broke the Lap record by five clear seconds. Back at Coventry it was used for more development work, while a further three D-types were built for the race itself. In the event fuel contamination sidelined two cars, but the third finished second after a Ferrari. Victories at Reims and Sebring were a promising pointer for the following year, when Mike Hawthorn and Ivor Bueb won Le Mans – Jaguar’s third victory.

In 1956 two works cars crashed and one suffered engine failure, but the honours fell to another D-type of the private Ecurie Ecosse team. In 1957 Ecurie Ecosse brought Jaguar’s total to five Le Mans wins, three of them for the D-type – a world beating sports-racing car, which you could buy from a Jaguar dealer and drive home.
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RUF CTR3 Ride at the Nordschleife

Earlier, at the Michelin Tuning and Bespoke auto manufacturer’s day at the Nurburgring in Germany, Porsche outfitter and tuning outfit, RUF, fetched along the mighty looking Ruf CTR 3 and allowed me a few passenger laps. Like all RUF models, the CTR 3 is Porsche based, but the origin of its chassis has never been disclosed. I suspect 60% of the chassis to be reconstructed from the front wing and slightly longer wheelbase to accommodate repositioning of the twin-turbo flat-six boxer engine. The CTR3’s ambition and heritage was to replace the now legendary 469bhp CTR ‘Yellow Bird’ and the 520bhp CTR2 that followed a decade later.

Using essentially the same motor as Ruf’s 911-based Rt 12, but with an additional 50hp, the CTR3’s 700bhp is supported by a jaw thumping 656lb ft of torque at 4000rpm. Therefore directing all the power to the rear wheels via a six-speed sequential gear box. This thrusts the CTR3 to 0-124mph in 9.6sec. However, no matter what the figures tell you, on the Nordschleife in Germany, I expected it to be restrained in the many uncompromising corners of the northloop.

This definitely was not the case. Immediately after leaving the car park and cruising down through Tiergarten, I realized this was no normal press lap. Hatzenbach and Quiddelbacher were a blur and I was overwhelmed by the power and low end lagless power delivered by the twin turbochargers.

At the peak of Flugplatz, the car jumped slightly as it aggressively positioned itself for the tight right hand corner. As the car powered its way down towards the corner at Aremberg, jumping slightly at Schwedenkreuz, it entered the forest under the bridge at Fuchsrohre into Adenauer Forst.
 
This is where the familiarity of the previous Porsches’ handling capabilities came into play, albeit with more power and composure. The next few corners were textbook racing as he stormed his way to the Karussell. I was not expecting to experience the Karusell, due to the reduced suspension height. To my amazement, he planted the CTR3 into the corner as the car miraculously dampened out most of the concrete bank vibration, to which the Karussell is famous for.

Then we went up the hill to Hohe Acht, to the famous spectators’ area (Brunnchen) where he toyed with the throttle letting the back over steer slightly. He did the same at Pflantzgarten. He shot through the mini Karussell with the same composure, then down the final straight at Dottinger Hohe, where the driver teased me at 155mph saying that he still had 2,500 rpms left!

People compare this car to the Porsche Carrera GT and the Pagani Zonda-F; my opinion is that there is no comparison. This is a RUF CTR and a 3 year old one at that!