As another Geneva Motor Show approaches, so too does another Audi e-tron debut – this time a plug-in hybrid version of the A3 Sportback….
Last month Porsche announced that a 918 Spyder prototype turned in a single-lap time of just 7 minutes 14 seconds around the 12.9 mile Nürburgring Nordschliefe circuit. The 784bhp hybrid prototype was fitted with production Michelin road tyres as well as the optional “Weissach” package.
With 12 months to go before Porsche’s 918 Spyder hits the road, the development car has already exceeded Porsche’s goal of lapping the Nürburgring Nordschleife in less than seven minutes and 30 seconds.
In fact, earlier this week a Porsche 918 Spyder prototype turned in a single-lap best time of just 7min 14 seconds for the 12.9 mile circuit.
Later today the 90th running of the Pikes Peak Hill Climb will get underway and if you’re a seasoned observer, there’s one driver that you’ll be paying particular attention to. Nobuhiro “Monster” Tajima.
Picture the race livery of a factory Porsche from the ’70s or 80’s and chances are you’ll either think of the blue and orange colours of Gulf Oil, or the red and blue stripes of Martini Racing. So it makes an evocative statement to see those Martini colours on Porsche’s 918 Spyder prototype, a road car which might just make an appearance in competition during the next few years.
Audi has claimed a world record for its R8 e-tron, lapping the Nürburgring in 8:09.099 minutes, but it’s important to note this is a ‘production’ EV record not the outright EV lap of the ‘ring, which Toyota still hold with their electric-powered Radical-bodied TMG EV P001.
If you inadvertently search the terms ‘size anxiety’ on Google, you’ll find a host of topics offering support for those people concerned by whether they measure up against expectations. So perhaps it’s not surprising to see such concerns extend beyond size, to how long it will last.
We’re talking about ‘Range anxiety’ – The fear that a vehicle has insufficient range to reach its destination and would thus strand the vehicle’s occupants.’
We love dirty V8 NASCARs, anti-lag Group B monsters, flame-spitting 24Hr race cars, killer coupes and anything fast, ferocious and frivolous here at ROAD. But we’ve also got one eye on the future.. quite possibly free of Super and 110RON race fuel.
The new Fisker Surf is the world’s first electric luxury/sports automobile for an active and eco-friendly lifestyle. Building on the success of the ground-breaking Karma Electric Vehicle, the Surf offers additional flexibility and load-carrying capability, along with a spirited new attitude all of its own.
The sign on the side of the truck is simple yet evocative – “The Power of Dreams” it reads.
I’d been looking forward to EcoVelocity, London’s Low-Carbon Motor Festival. The choice of venue, the now defunct Battersea Power Station, was inspiring. I could picture the decaying edifice, a symbol of the once might of its smouldering furnaces, now nothing but a fossil, left for generations to wonder over. And there, emerging from the ruins would be living incarnations of the new era; cars and bikes, powered by clean, renewable energy and travelling through air fit for all to breathe.
As first deliveries of the Karma luxury electric vehicle reach US customers, Fisker has released a teaser image of its next game changer – the Surf. Due to be unveiled at next week’s Frankfurt Motor Show, the wraps will come off what looks to be a shooting-brake design riding on the same wheelbase as its 4-door sibling.
The W16 engine fitted to the Bugatti Veyron produces 1,250 newton metres of torque and a little over 1,000 bhp. It’s the fastest production car in the world and most people accept it’s unlikely ever to be beaten either in terms of those headline power figures or straight-line performance – after all, we live in a period of austerity and environmental consciousness, where a car’s CO2 emissions now lead our new vocabulary for desirability.