Author Archives: seoworksadam

Goodwood Festival of Speed Ferrari supercar

25th Festival of Speed Celebrated in Style

The famous Goodwood Festival of Speed celebrated its 25th anniversary this month, and it was a landmark celebrated in style thanks to the parade of eye-catching supercars on display and modern elements that set this year’s Festival apart from previous editions.

The annual Festival, which regularly attracts crowds of over 100,000, is named for Goodwood House in West Sussex where it is held. The crowd has swelled dramatically since 1993, when the first Festival of Speed was attended by 25,000 people. It’s even been incorporated into the Gran Turismo videogame.

The Festival combines historic racing vehicles with modern F1 machines and sees participants embark on a hill climb race through the grounds. It also features a Supercar Run, which in recent years has been increasingly used by brands to show off the speed capabilities of their latest developments.

This year’s hill climb was won by French driver Romain Dumas in a Volkswagen I.D. R with a time of 43.9 seconds, the fastest time since 2003. It was also the fastest time set by an electric car at the hill climb, emphasising again the increasing industry trend towards electric supercars.

The hill climb also had another modern feature that set it apart from previous iterations – a man flying a jet pack up the hill.

The Festival of Speed’s silver jubilee coincided with Porsche’s 70th anniversary, and the supercar giant didn’t miss the chance to mark the double celebration, installing a 170ft white structure featuring six of the giant’s most iconic cars.

The range of supercars on show at the Festival of Speed is always worth seeing, with only the most exclusive models present. This year’s edition was no different and included the Apollo Intensa Emozione – which we wrote about back in April (specifically, its claim to be able to drive upside down) – and upcoming models such as the Porsche Speedster and the Toyota Supra.

Ferrari Le Mans 1966

New ‘Ford vs Ferrari’ blockbuster in the works

In exciting news for supercar fans, a classic racing battle between two of the world’s biggest car brands, Ford and Ferrari, is set to make its way to the big screen with a high-budget film in the works.

The project, as yet untitled, is being developed by 20th Century Fox and will be directed by James Mangold, whose directorial credits include 2013’s The Wolverine. The film is already attracting a star-studded cast, with former Batman Christian Bale and The Martian star Matt Damon among those confirmed so far.

The film will centre on the battle between the two giants at the 1966 Le Mans World Championship.

At the time, Ferrari were the dominant force in the Grand Prix, and Ford’s team of American engineers were tasked with creating a new vehicle from scratch to challenge Ferrari’s monopoly on the World Championship.

The film is based on AJ Baime’s 2010 book ‘Go Like Hell: Ford, Ferrari and Their Battle for Speed and Glory at Le Mans’.

Damon will play Ford visionary Carroll Shelby, with Bale portraying Shelby’s British driver Ken Miles. Jon Bernthal of The Walking Dead fame will also star as Lee Iacocca, Ford’s then Head of Development.

Ford’s engineers were given the job of building the world’s fastest car by Henry Ford II in order to defeat Ferrari at Le Mans, and the film is expected to focus on the development of the new car as well as the drama of the race itself, which will provide a naturally nail-biting climax.

Brad Pitt and Tom Cruise had at one point been linked to the film but their involvement was short-lived when an earlier script fell apart.

Filming is set to begin this summer, with the release date as yet unknown.

Why not get yourself in the mood for the blockbuster by hiring a classic Ferrari from PB Supercars?

Audi supercar history

Supercar Histories: Audi

Continuing our series tracing the roots of legendary supercar brands, this month we’re training our focus on Audi, who owe their success in part to a nosy 10-year-old boy…

German giant Audi can trace its roots all the way back to the late 1800s. The company that would eventually become Audi was founded in Cologne by August Horch, a blacksmith turned engineer, in 1899.

Horch’s original company was rather unimaginatively called A. Horch & Cie (the image above is one of their early designs), but following a dispute with a business partner, August was forced to come up with a new name after moving to Zwickau to form a splinter company.

Farcically prevented from using his own name again in the new company by trademark laws, Horch held a meeting with his business associates to choose a new name. One of the businessmen’s 10-year-old sons sat quietly studying Latin in the corner of the room; after watching the men struggle to come up with a name, the son suggested one himself.

The German word “Horch” means “Hark!” or “Hear!”, a snappy command which meant it also worked well as a company name. The son therefore suggested using the Latin word “Audi”, a similar command meaning “Listen!” The new name was unanimously accepted.

Audi was formed in 1910 and their first car, the Audi Type A (they should have used the 10-year-old for name suggestions again…) was produced the same year. Audi’s subsequent models followed the alphabet, and by the Type K followed in 1921, Audi had revolutionised driving in Germany by creating vehicles with left-hand drive, which provided a better view of oncoming traffic, allowing for drivers to safely overtake.

Audi continued to grow through the 1920s and 1930s, but after the Second World War, reparations meant that many factories across Germany, including Audi’s, were dismantled. The company subsequently relocated to Ingolstadt in West Germany, where war repercussions on German businesses were less strict.

The company found success across Europe and in the United States in the 1960s-1980s with popular mass-market cars such as the Audi Quattro, Audi Coupe and Audi 80.

Audi 80

The Audi 80 is one of the German giants’ most recognisable models

However, Audi found itself at the centre of a storm of controversy in America the mid-1980s when the Audi 5000 was linked to a large number of accidents caused by sudden unintended acceleration.

An investigation by the TV show 60 Minutes appeared to confirm the allegations – but when the programme’s investigation was later found to have been staged, Audi’s argument that the accidents were caused by driver error was accepted.

Audi R8 V10 Spyder

The R8 V10 Spyder – available for hire from PB Supercars – is one of Audi’s modern classics

In the 1990s, Audi began to move its focus to more upmarket models, aiming to compete against their compatriots Mercedes-Benz and BMW. Recent years have seen Audi cruise into the supercar market with gorgeous models such as the Audi R8 V10 Spyder and the R8 V8 Coupe, both of which are available for hire at PB Supercars.





A supercar that can drive upside down?

Image courtesy of Online Octane.

Even by the supercar industry’s fast-moving standards, the past year has been a groundbreaking one to say the least. In July we wrote about the Zarooq Sandracer 500GT, the world’s first off-road supercar. At the start of this year there was Rimac’s self-driving supercar.

Last month’s Geneva Motor Show brought further examples of futuristic innovation and talking points, including the Pal-V Flying Car.

Which brings us to the latest unbelievable-sounding prototype to hit the headlines: the supercar that can drive upside down.

This is the Apollo Intensa Emozione (Italian for ‘intense emotion’), better known as the Apollo IE. Its makers have stated that the model has enough downforce to theoretically drive upside down.

Very little has been heard about the Apollo brand name in the past few years. However, it seems this was part of the German manufacturer’s plan, as the secrecy has allowed them to quietly develop the Intensa Emozione and surprise the industry with its announcement.

The IE features a 6.3 litre V-12 engine with over 800 horsepower, but its carbon fibre chassis and body means that it is much lighter than similar supercars. Its designers claim that making the IE “a true event to drive” was at the forefront of their priorities when creating it.

The IE’s angular, futuristic black exterior and racing-style red and black seats have seen it likened to the Batmobile by the press. It also features a 3D laser printed three-way exhaust – because why not?

Apollo Intensa Emozione

Image courtesy of Car Magazine.

It will clearly be an exclusive car: each IE carries a hefty $2.7m price tag. That figure makes more sense when you learn that Apollo will only produce 10 models of the IE, each customised by its owner. Each car will reportedly take Apollo around four months to produce.

The IE was unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show last month but rather than compete inside the convention in a static booth alongside the many other cars being presented, Apollo instead drove the IE around Geneva to better showcase its capabilities.

So, back to the reason you’re here: the claim that the IE could drive upside down. Every aspect of this supercar has been carefully sculpted to create as much downforce as possible. As Top Gear reports, as the IE weighs around 1,250kg and has a net downforce of 1,350kg, it is theoretically possible that the car could drive upside down.

However, this sort of claim is usually more of a marketing ploy than a real selling point. As Top Gear’s Ollie Kew concludes, “No one’s ever, ever going to test one of these ‘more downforce than weight’ claims”.

That said, keep your eyes peeled for any news stories in coming months about one of the ten IE owners giving it a try…





Geneva Motor Show

Five Talking Points from the 2018 Geneva Motor Show

This year’s Geneva Motor Show wrapped up on Sunday, and as ever, it left supercar fans and experts with plenty to discuss.

The major international auto show, which has been held in the Swiss city for over 110 years, is regularly used by supercar brands to show off their latest futuristic concepts, and this year’s edition was no different.

We’ve come up with five key talking points from the show, which ran from March 8th to March 18th.

Geneva Motor Show 2

The Geneva Motor Show is one of the highlights of the calendar for supercar enthusiasts

Rimac’s electric supercar steals the show

We wrote about Rimac’s self-driving electric supercar last month, and it was at the fore again in Geneva. The concept is controversial – where’s the fun in a supercar that you don’t get to drive? – but you can’t deny that it has gained a lot of attention in the industry.

The Croatian manufacturer’s Concept Two was on show in Geneva and turned a lot of heads with its top speed of 412km/h and 0-100 time of under two seconds. Rimac’s design typified the shift towards electric supercars at this year’s convention. While gas-powered vehicles remain the overwhelming choice of consumers, electric cars are increasingly gaining traction.

Aston Martin reveal zero-emission prototype

As the rise of electric shows, supercar manufacturers are increasingly considering environmental factors in their designs. Aston Martin grabbed the headlines in this regard at Geneva with their announcement of the zero-emission Lagonda Vision Concept.

The legendary brand have hailed the Lagonda as the beginning of a new generation of emission-free luxury vehicles. with the Lagonda marking the world’s first zero-emission luxury brand.

Production is scheduled to begin in 2021. Aston Martin have used the Lagonda name since the 1960s for ultra-luxury sedans, and this announcement takes the high-end concept further to include environmental factors. Is this a reflection of consumer concerns or a play for positive PR?

Porsche tests the water with cross-utility vehicle

 One of this year’s Motor Show’s most surprising stories was Porsche revealing a crossover vehicle, the Mission E Cross Turismo.

The four-door electric car combines classic sports car features with everyday practicality. It has been interpreted as a ‘feasibility study’ – an attempt to test the water for demand for such crossover cars.

The Mission E Cross Turismo is powered by two electric motors, which offer a combined 590BHP. This, along with its speed and quick recharge time, are presented as the prototype’s selling points.

Pal-V Flying Car makes its return

Pal-V Flying Car

The Pal-V Liberty in its two forms (image courtesy of Pal-V)

There’s always one, isn’t there. While the rest of the supercar brands present were showing off their sleek new designs, Dutch manufacturers Pal-V returned with their Liberty Flying Car model, six years after it was first displayed.

The Liberty is capable of reaching 110mph in the skies and 60mph on the road, and – perhaps unsurprisingly for a car that can actually fly – is reportedly priced at $600,000, though a ‘sport edition’ is available for around $200,000 less.

If you want to snap up the ‘pioneer edition’, the more expensive version, you’ll have to be quick, as there are only 90 models available – an exclusivity Pal-V promotes by presenting Liberty owners with a framed. gold-plated serial number of their vehicle.

Inevitably, regulation barriers continue to slow the Liberty’s progress. Pal-V are still waiting for their Federal Aviation Administration licence in the U.S. This is something that critics continue to pick up on, noting that several other ‘flying car’ concepts in the past have failed to get off the ground (sorry) due to practical issues.

Being an autogyro rather than a helicopter means the Liberty is more compact and can fit in a roughly regular parking space. However, it also means that it needs a good run-up before takeoff, as planes do.

Marty McFly would be proud.

‘Booth Babes’ Banished from Show

Following the much-discussed announcement last month that Formula 1’s ‘grid girls’ were no more, the Geneva Motor Show’s ‘booth babes’ also appear to be a thing of the past.

Several exhibitors including Toyota, Nissan and Ssangyong confirmed that they would not be using ‘booth babes’ at this year’s show.

“Times have changed,” Bloomberg quotes a Nissan spokesperson as saying. “It makes more sense to use product specialists because we’re selling cars.”

However, Bloomberg also reports that a Geneva Motor Show spokesperson said exhibitors are free to promote their cars at the show however they want.

Rimac Concept Two self-driving supercar

A self-driving supercar? Rimac reveals controversial plans

It’s an exciting time for the supercar industry, that’s for sure. Just last month we wrote about Ferrari announcing the first electric supercar. Back in July there was the world’s first off-road supercar, in the Zarooq Sandracer 500GT. And now Croatian manufacturers Rimac have revealed plans for a self-driving supercar. Say what you like about these brands, you can’t fault their innovation.

Predictably, Rimac’s announcement has been met with mixed reactions. A huge part of the appeal of driving a supercar is, well, driving it. These cars are built for maximum enjoyment, capable of combining lightning-quick top speeds with massive horsepower but also the highest levels of comfort and luxury.

While the ego boost and style points that come from driving a supercar around are undoubtedly also part of the appeal, the actual driving experience is arguably the biggest reason why supercars are so popular.

With that in mind, Rimac’s design is something of a risk: will supercar enthusiasts want a supercar that drives itself?

The Croatian brand clearly believe so. The self-driving Concept Two is expected to be revealed in Geneva later this year, following on from the (human-driven) Concept One in 2013, which earned praise for its futuristic design and performance. Experts believe Rimac have been forced to up their game and go bigger with the Concept Two by Tesla’s recent Roadster announcement, hence the self-driving addition.

The Concept Two will have what is known as Level 4 autonomy. This means that no driver attention is ever required for safety, and the driver could safely go to sleep or leave the car without risk of the car crashing. Level 4 is the second-highest level of autonomy – the only level above it is reserved for cars such as robotic taxis that do not require any human intervention whatsoever.

It is believed that Rimac will manufacture around 100 models of the Concept Two, which is set to be priced at around $1 million. Only 8 Concept Ones were produced and they sold out very quickly.

In the meantime why not experience the thrill of driving a luxury supercar yourself by hiring one of PB’s range of supercars.

Ferrari electric car

Ferrari announces plans for first electric supercar

In exciting news for the supercar industry, Ferrari last week made the surprise announcement that a groundbreaking electric supercar is in the works.

Ferrari’s CEO Sergio Marchionne revealed the plans for the first battery-powered supercar at the Detroit Auto Show. The move has been interpreted as a bid to challenge Tesla at the top end of the electric car market.

“If there is an electric supercar to be built, then Ferrari will be the first,” said Marchionne. “People are amazed at what Tesla did…I’m not trying to minimize what Elon [Musk, Tesla CEO] did. but I think it’s doable by all of us.”

The groundbreaking Tesla Roadster has attracted headlines for its futuristic design, but Ferrari believe they can succeed in the electric market by offering their iconic Italian comfort and stylishness paired with the advantage of consumer familiarity with their brand.

Cannily, Marchionne hinted that Ferrari’s electric car would be released in 2019 or early 2020 – just before the Tesla Roadster. The electric supercar will not compromise any of the Prancing Horse’s values, with its design remaining true to Ferrari’s legacy: “It has to drive like a Ferrari,” Marchionne insisted.

Marchionne pointed out that, as Ferrari are already making hybrid cars, the move to electric supercars would not be a huge jump.

However, the Ferrari CEO’s announcement marks a dramatic change of heart: as recently as March 2016, when asked about the possibility of an all-electric Ferrari, Marchionne replied “You will have to shoot me first”.

“With Ferrari, it’s almost an obscene concept,” he added then.

The enormous potential of the electric supercar market seems to have convinced the Italian giants, and some of the other leading supercar brands, such as Porsche, are also believed to be entering the market in the near future.

In the meantime, here at PB Supercars we have a range of classic Ferraris available for hire, including the Ferrari 458 Italia Coupe and the California F1. Get in touch today for more information.