2009 Bugatti Veyron Fbg par Hermes – New Colors Available

Posted in Bugatti

NEW COLOUR COMBINATIONS FOR THE “BUGATTI VEYRON FBG PAR HERMÈS”


Monterey, 15th August 2008. The “Bugatti Veyron Fbg par Hermès”, revealed to the public at the Geneva Motor Show in March this year, will be presented on Friday, 15th August at “The Quail, a Motorsport Gathering” on the Monterey Peninsula. This show has become the highlight in what is a whirlwind of ten days of events every August, when car enthusiasts from around the world gather in Monterey to celebrate the ultimate in automotive design and engineering.

This unique version of the “Bugatti Veyron Fbg par Hermès” was first launched in Geneva in complimentary tones of ebony and étoupe and ebony and brick. In order to give the customer a wider range of options Hermès and Bugatti have developped four new colours schemes in line with the heritage and the values of the two houses. Therefore, the “Bugatti Veyron Fbg par Hermès” is now also available in these exclusive combinations : “indigo blue and vermilion”, “indigo blue and lime green”, “ black and garance red” and “Prussian blue and blue jean”.

The «Bugatti Veyron Fbg par Hermès” associates Bugatti’s technical performance with the expertise of Hermès and its craftsmen. In partnership with Hermès, designer Gabriele Pezzini has married the distinctive Hermès style to the legendary Bugatti Veyron 16.4, magnifying the car’s personality.

This remarkable car features an array of exceptional characteristics: the innovative alliance of a technologically advanced engine, delivering 1001 horsepower, with an understated yet uncompromising silhouette reflecting the high performance capacities of state-of-the-art engineering and design, and above all, the pleasure these inspire in every Bugatti owner.

The fascination exerted by this sports coupé, capable of reaching 407 km/h, is due in large part to its unique alliance of the very finest motor-racing technology with comfortable handling for everyday driving. The 16-cylinder “W” configuration engine is fed by four turbochargers and features 64 valves, generating 1001 horsepower at 6000 rpm. The engine draws on its 8-litre displacement to deliver a maximum torque of 1250 Newton-metres between 2200 and 5500 rpm. With full-time all-wheel drive, the car’s phenomenal power produces breath-takingly dynamic handling, with acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h in a mere 2.5 seconds. The Bugatti Veyron 16.4 benefits from aeronautical and aerospace technologies, making it the fastest production car ever made. The car also features a braking system designed to deliver unprecedented powers of deceleration, establishing a new industry benchmark. The carbon-fibre discs provide brake pressure of up to 180 bars, combined with eight-piston monobloc callipers and titanium pistons fitted with fine steel heads and ceramic heat protectors. Apply the brakes at speeds above 200 km/h, and the rear wing acts as an airbrake, positioning itself at an angle of 113 degrees in less than 0.4 seconds, augmenting the Bugatti Veyron’s already impressive stopping power. The airbrake increases negative lift at the rear of the car to 300 kg, enhancing the braking torque on the rear axle. At 400 km/h, emergency braking will bring the sports car to a complete halt in less than 10 seconds.

This, the world’s most fascinating car, has pushed back the limits of physical engineering to offer a completely new sensation for driver and passenger alike. But it has also adopted a radically different stance to that of other sports cars: its features and finish are sure to impress the most demanding clientele. Hermès and designer Gabriele Pezzini have lavished attention on the interior and exterior of this exceptional car, to create the new Bugatti Veyron 16.4: the “Bugatti Veyron Fbg par Hermès”.

A HARMONIOUS DESIGN, INSIDE AND OUT

The official name of the highly exclusive Bugatti Veyron “Fbg par Hermès” refers to the historic Hermès headquarters on the Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré, in the heart of Paris’s eight arrondissement: the “Fbg” appellation evokes the house’s “faubourg” address.

With the Bugatti Veyron Fbg par Hermès, the exacting standards of Émile Hermès and Ettore Bugatti come together for the first time, in an exceptional collaboration: the culmination of their extreme attention to aesthetic and technological quality and performance.

Gabriele Pezzini has reinterpreted Bugatti’s traditional two-toned carriage work, fostering a fluid, harmonious transition between the car’s exterior and interior design. The colour of the hood extends to the interior of the cockpit, and re-emerges behind, at the level of the rear wing.

As a tribute to the celebrated 1924 Bugatti Type 35, undoubtedly the most famous of all time, thanks to its many successes on the racetrack, the new Bugatti Veyron Fbg par Hermès features eight-spoked wheels in polished aluminium, central butterfly wheel locks branded with the letter H, and air vents around the rims reproducing the characteristics appearance of Hermès saddle-stitching. The horseshoe radiator grille, and the lateral ventilation grilles flanking it, are made from lightweight alloys with a design of interlocking H’s evoking the Hermès “signature”.

A REFINED FORMAL VOCABULARY

The inner surfaces of the Bugatti Veyron Fbg par Hermès have been designed and sheathed in bull calfskin by the Hermès workshops in Paris. The care and attention to detail observe an extremely refined, minimalist formal vocabulary, reflecting the tradition of the very first Bugattis and the fundamental design principles of the house of Hermès. The door handles echo the fluid forms of handles on Hermès travel bags and luggage.

And the dashboard, traditionally finished in brushed aluminium, is here clad entirely in bull calfskin. Passengers aboard the Bugatti Veyron Fbg par Hermès will find a dashboard glove compartment designed to hold a selection of small travel accessories and a zipped Hermès wallet. Both seats are covered in two-toned bull calfskin, and the panel separating the cockpit from the central rear engine – traditionally made of carbon fibre- is covered in the same fine leather. The leather-lined trunk holds a specially-fitted “Toile H” and leather case, hand-made by the craftmen from the Hermès workshops.

This exceptional car is priced at 1.55 million Euros (not including taxes) and is available at the end of 2008.

Tesla Roadster

Posted in Tesla

Tesla Roadster
Supercar-quick electric stunner takes alternative-powered vehicles to a new level.


It’s the electric American dream! Powered solely from the mains supply, the Tesla Roadster does not emit any nasty gases, travels more than 220 miles on a charge, yet accelerates like a Ferrari – and Auto Express has driven it.

If the car looks familiar, that’s because it’s based on Lotus’ Elise – and the British firm has even helped develop it. However, the Tesla is much more than a modified Elise. The body is made of carbon fibre and, while the front suspension is carried over, it’s all change at the rear to accommodate a lithium-ion battery pack and 250bhp motor.

Elise owners will recognise the cabin’s slim seats and simple dash, but not the display showing how much charge is left in the batteries and the auxiliary screen indicating their performance.

Twist the key, select drive and you’re off, accompanied by a jet-like whoosh! Despite weighing 300kg over an Elise, the Tesla is incredibly fast: 0-60mph takes a mere 3.9 seconds, making it as rapid as a Ferrari F430. It’s all thanks to the electric motor, which delivers 380Nm of torque instantly.

With a lot of weight over the rear wheels, traction is incredible and the car feels rooted to the road through corners. The driving experience is just as much fun as in an Elise. Even better, in electricity terms the Tesla costs around 1.5 pence per mile, while the batteries last 100,000 miles and are recyclable, too.

There are a few stumbling blocks, though. Charging takes 16 hours, while the £92,000 tag makes the Roadster as costly as an Aston Martin V8 Vantage. Still, the next arrival from Tesla, due in 2010, will be a little more affordable – a £40,000 sports saloon. There are also plans for a city car similar to the VW up!

In the meantime, despite the price, Tesla should easily sell the 250 Roadsters allocated to Europe – so far, 20 have been snapped up by UK buyers. This is the first electric car to be truly desirable – and with technology that actually works, the future looks bright for the company.

Rival: Lightning GT
You can’t buy this Brit car until 2009, but the rakish coupé should be worth it. With in-wheel electric motors, its maker claims it offers 700bhp-plus, hits 0-60mph in 4.0 seconds and can be charged in 10 minutes.

Corvette ZR1

Posted in Chevrolet

Corvette ZR1
As with the Tesla Roadster, the Corvette ZR1 is a sports car from the land of the stars and stripes – but that’s there the similarities end!

Powered by a 647bhp 6.2-litre supercharged V8, it’s mean, not green. And with a 205mph top speed, it is the fastest Corvette ever. The ZR1 also replaces the usual steel chassis with a super-stiff, lightweight aluminium and magnesium construction.

Carbon fibre panels, ceramic brakes and electro-magnetic adaptive dampers complete the package. The hand- built engine gives phenomenal performance. The ZR1 races from 0-60mph in 3.5 seconds and 0-100mph in 7.0 seconds.

As you are thrown back in your seat, exhaust valves open up at full throttle, releasing a hard-edged V8 roar. The ride is firm, but cruising is good: the combination of that big engine and long gearing means relaxed motorway progress.

Head to the track, select ‘Sport’ and you can really unleash the beast. Grip levels are amazing, as the front end scythes into corners.

There’s no body roll, and the brakes have fabulous stopping ability. The steering is meaty – if not full of feedback – and as a whole the package is extremely good. As usual with Corvettes the cabin is well equipped, but of average quality. All in all, though, the ZR1 is deeply impressive – yet it’s also very expensive, at £100,000. GM expects to sell less than 50 cars a year in the UK!

2008 Seat Leon Cupra – Now in High Fashion Colors

Posted in Seat
Sporty Spanish car maker SEAT is celebrating a remarkable sales surge as its tip for the top ‘high fashion’ car colour of 2008 – chic Candy White – is proving to be a storming success with the car cognoscenti.

At the turn of the year SEAT’s marketing men earmarked white, previously a decidedly utilitarian hue favoured mostly by van drivers and police patrol car pilots, as the ‘next big thing’ in car colours.

Sceptics may have turned up their noses at the idea of white Ibizas and Leons flying out of SEAT showrooms, but the latest sales statistics from the firm back up its bold claims. In the seven months to the beginning of August this year no fewer than 886 white SEATs had found homes here, an astonishing increase of 3,592% on the same period last year when just 24 white SEATs were registered.

But the shift to white, highlighted by the popularity of the headturning Leon Cupra K1 in the colour, is just the beginning of the stylish Spaniards’ colour-co-ordinated assault on drab British street scenes.

Hot on the heels of the Candy White Cupras comes a selection of stunning new shades – entitled Custom Palette colours and priced at £550 RRP – calculated to ensure SEAT buyers attract nothing but admiring attention.

There is, for instance, the new option of Lumina Orange on Leon models, illustrated here with optional 18” Orion black alloy wheels. Sure to cause a stir among style-conscious hot hatch fans, Lumina is available on FR and all Cupra models.

Alternatively, Leon buyers who are particularly keen to make a style statement can now opt for the stunning special edition Cupra K1 – an extra-special Cupra with bespoke styling additions front and rear – in an all-new colour, the apposite Speed Blue.

Joining these two stunning colours in the Custom Palette are Kiwi Green and Furia Grey, the latter being a genuine ‘stealth’ shade likely to appeal to those who put four-wheeled fashion at the very top of their buying criteria.

Commenting on SEAT’s remarkable success with its high fashion colour options SEAT Product Marketing Manager, Andy Medcraft, said: ‘Even allowing for our predictions, we have been pleasantly surprised by just how popular Candy White has proved among clued-up car buyers keen to stand out from the crowd.

‘The increase in the number of SEAT buyers opting for white has been nothing short of phenomenal.

‘Now, with the introduction of our eye-catching new Custom Palette colours on Leon FR, Cupra and Cupra K1, I’m certain we’ll see the trend towards stunning paint jobs continue.’

Moscow 2008: Mazda Kazamai concept officially unveiled

Posted in Concept Cars, Mazda
Mazda pulled out all the awkwardly executed stops for the reveal of the Kazamai concept, including four sets of dancers, guys in neon-pink shorts on roller skates and a 40-man Russian singing troop in Soviet-style dress. We couldn’t make this stuff up if we tried, but what better way to kick off our coverage of the Moscow International Auto Salon.

Despite the strange theatrics, the Kazamai is one of our favorite Nagare-themed concepts since the Furai and Kabura. Then again, we’re suckers for two-door crossovers. The Kazamai blends the “flow” theme we’ve seen on several other concepts with a more aerodynamic body and a slightly toned-down demeanor. Could this be a hint at the future of the CX-7? Don’t count it out. But if it does head to production, we’ll take it in a three-door package equipped with the MS3′s drivetrain… and all-wheel-drive.

Alfa Romeo’s return to America comes into focus

Posted in Alfa Romeo

Alfa Romeo's return to America comes into focusBe patient. In the inherently fast-paced automotive industry, it’s quite a thing to ask. But that’s exactly what Alfa Romeo has demanded of the eager legions of its fans in the United States. The Italian automaker may retain a sizable base of enthusiasts in America, but while rumors of its impending return to the market have been mounting for some time — with no clear end in sight — Alfa remains committed to coming back in full force. And when it does, it won’t be for the sake of its loyal fans alone, but with every intention of attacking the entirety of the world’s largest new-car market in full force.

Three major questions linger over Alfa Romeo’s return to the US: namely, when, what and where. The “when” was anticipated to be next year, but with plans continuously being pushed back, sources indicate the new target is 2010, firmly. As for “what”, initial reports suggested Alfa’s return would be heralded by the Brera, 159 and 8C Competizione. While the latter is still in the cards – with a healthy portion of the 8C’s production still reserved for American consumption – the Brera and 159 are to be replaced by then, and the all-new MiTo and upcoming 149 would also form attractive offerings for American buyers. Plans for a crossover and a rear-drive luxury flagship (underpinned possibly by BMW or by Jaguar) are also under consideration.

Finally, if you thought the “where” was a no-brainer, the question is broken down into both sales and production. Initially, Maserati was tipped to offer its sales network to its sister-company upon landing Stateside, however its 85 locations would not be enough for the type of volume Alfa Romeo would need. Fiat’s giant agricultural equipment subsidiary Case New Holland, based in Chicago, which could offer support for parts distribution, however sales would not be suitable. Fiat’s new partnership with BMW, meanwhile, could hold the answer, with Alfas being sold in MINI dealerships across North America. As for production, Alfa has long been tipped to be leaning towards dedicated manufacturing in North America to take advantage of NAFTA benefits and the weak American dollar, and while discussions are still ongoing – possibly buying excess capacity from Detroit – the final arrangement remains unclear. While we watch out for the answers to these questions, the one thing that remains crystal clear is Alfa Romeo’s intention of taking the North American market by storm.

Alfa 8C Competizione wins Best Design of the Year

Posted in Alfa Romeo

Alfa 8C Competizione wins Best Design of the Year
Alfa Romeo’s awesome Alfa 8C Competizione supercar has scooped the award for Best Design of the Year in Auto Express’s 2008 New Car Honours.
The announcement came after more than 4000 Auto Express readers voted in the category, putting the Italian 4.7 V8 head and shoulders above its rivals. Auto Express’s judging panel agreed with their verdict.

Editor of Auto Express, David Johns, said: “Choosing the best designed car of the year is never easy, so we turned to the experts for help – Auto Express readers. Only one car was ever going to win – Alfa Romeo’s 8C Competizione simply blew the opposition away.”

Marketing Director of Alfa Romeo UK, Nicholas Bernard, added: “It’s fabulous to know that this supercar has stirred the emotions and unified car fans across the UK. It is the epitome of the Alfa marque and will provide the design inspiration for future models.”

Significantly, many of the design cues from the Alfa 8C Competizione have been projected on Alfa Romeo’s eagerly awaited Alfa MiTo. Dubbed the sportiest compact car in the world, the Alfa MiTo is destined for UK roads in January 2009.

Source: Alfa Romeo