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jnrdavo

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  1. The upcoming Lamborghini V12 hybrid set to replace the 12-year-old Aventador, which ended production this year, is likely to start at a higher cost – but the Italian brand insists that has more to do with the increasing cost of materials than hybridisation. Set to be unveiled early 2023, the new flagship Lamborghini V12 will be utilising an all new chassis, V12 engine and a hybrid system that the Italian brand says is entirely in house. The new model already has over 3000 orders. Speaking to CarExpert at the opening of the revised Lamborghini dealership in Brisbane this week, the brand’s regional director of Asia Pacific, Francesco Scardaoni, said the new model will have a price rise due to the rising cost of materials. “The cost price will be slightly higher than Aventador, but not because of the hybrid but because of the materials, the cost of material, cost of parts,” Scardaoni told CarExpert. The new V12 will kick start the new Lamborghini model onslaught which will also be followed by the Huracan replacement in 2024. “2023 is the year where we start the phase two of our electrification, our plans to kick off the hybridisation phase of Lamborghini,” Scardaoni said. “Of course, it’s a huge transition, a huge change for the company and we wanted to do it with the flagship and that’s the V12. The masterpiece that the company started with in 1963 and carried over all those years and it’s our legacy. It’s important to start a new era with the V12.” When the Aventador launched in 2011, it became the first series production car to feature a carbon-fibre monocoque chassis. Its replacement is also set to bring a list of firsts to market and Lamborghini says it will be best in class, which suggests it should take the fight to Ferrari’s ballistic SF90 V8 hybrid. We anticipate some of the technologies from the hypercar realm to make it to the ‘mainstream’. “The new Aventador has to create another successful story line like we did in 2011. It will be a very important car and you will see the car soon and we are sure it will be a success. It’s more performance than the current one.” In better news for interested buyers, Lamborghini is set to increase production of the new V12 over the Aventador with Scardaoni admitting that the factory will likely have higher capacity than before. The Italian brand has also fixed the airbag compliance issue it has had with its race seats affecting markets like Australia and Canada. The new models will all be optionable with race seats unlike the Huracan STO and Tecnica. Customers looking to order now will likely see their new V12 Lamborghini In the first half of 2024. According to Lamborghini Australia boss, Peter Crombie-Brown, the average Lamborghini buyer in Australia is 45 years old and is 91 percent likely to be a male. Most are entrepreneurs and very tech savvy. View the full article
  2. Lamborghini is set to replace the popular Huracan supercar in the middle of 2024 with an all-new model that will share very little with sister brand Audi and have a unique hybrid powertrain and platform. The current Huracan has been around since 2014 and will finally be replaced in Q2 2024 with the first of the new cars likely to arrive in Australia by 2025. CarExpert believes the new model will still carry a V10, but it will be an all-new Lamborghini-designed powerplant with a hybrid system. Speaking to CarExpert at the opening of the revised Lamborghini dealership in Brisbane this week, the brand’s regional director of Asia Pacific, Francesco Scardaoni, confirmed the new powertrain will be hybrid and may have inadvertently admitted that it will also be a V10. “That will be a new V10, the new Huracan, up to now we can not disclose what engine will be fit to the car. But it will be a hybrid. Because our hybridisation phase, the Huracan will be 2024 where we will release the hybrid version of the new Huracan, mid 24, we will release the new car.” The most exciting news for Lamborghini fans, apart from the possibility of the V10 living on in hybrid form, is that the new Italian supercar will not share its heart with an Audi, as was the case with the Huracan and R8. “Lamborghini became one of the most profitable brands within the group this year, we set another record year in terms of operating profit…. and because being the brand with the highest profitability, of course you have the power to ask certain things and also to self-fund the project.” The new Huracan will follow the V12 flagship hybrid. This will also be joined with the hybrid Urus SUV before the all-electric 2+2 Lamborghini arrives in 2028. Don’t expect Lamborghini to follow Ferrari’s lead in creating a near endless number of new models based on similar platforms, either. “We want to have a pretty clear differentiation between the range, our customers are asking to keep the models pretty differentiated, we are building dreams and we need to make sure customers are dreaming of Lamborghini.” Customers ordering a new Huracan Tecnica now will see their car in 2024, around the same time we are likely to see the Huracan replacement. According to Lamborghini Australia boss, Peter Crombie-Brown, the average Lamborghini buyer in Australia is 45 years old and is 91 percent likely to be a male. Most are entrepreneurs and very tech savvy. View the full article
  3. The new flagship Lamborghini supercar has been snapped inside and out, revealing more of its aggressive styling – and some extra technical details. Photos of the digital dashboard show that, in city mode at least, the new hybrid V12 powertrain will have an 8500rpm redline. The dashboard itself is an evolution of the current model’s setup, with a larger display area and more modern graphics. There also appears to be a big screen on the dashboard. Based on the “Rear aero system fault!” message being displayed, the new flagship Lamborghini will feature at least a pop-up rear spoiler – and potentially more on the active aerodynamics front. As for the exterior? Up front, the detailing is every bit as angular as you’d expect. There are hints of Sian about it, although the rear has a different look thanks to its slim LED lights. Those Aventador tail lights are, as you can probably tell, stickers – but it appears production units lurk beneath. Under the skin, the next flagship Lamborghini will feature a new, naturally aspirated V12 engine mated with a hybrid system. According to Lamborghini CEO Stephan Winkelmann, who spoke to CarExpert at the launch of the Huracan Tecnica in Italy, the new V12 will sound “amazing”. “For me the brand has to maintain the character today to fulfil the dream of the people. Both the fans and the customers,” he said. Outputs for the new powertrain haven’t been revealed, but Lamborghini isn’t likely to move backwards from what’s on offer in the Aventador. Its V12 powertrain makes 574kW and 720Nm in LP780-4 Ultimae guise. With all-wheel drive and an automated manual transmission, the Ultimae can complete the 0-100km/h sprint in 2.8 seconds, hit the double tonne in 8.7 seconds, and max out at 355km/h. The super capacitor setup used in the limited-run Sian has been deemed a “bridge technology” that’s unable to meet EU mandates, and therefore its 602kW hybrid V12 doesn’t necessarily foreshadow what to expect from the Aventador’s replacement. The Aventador’s replacement is expected to debut in time to go on sale globally in 2023. MORE: Everything Lamborghini Aventador MORE: Lamborghini’s new hybrid V12 to sound ‘amazing’ View the full article
  4. Porsche has gone ahead and done it. It’s finally revealed the production version of that high-riding 911 we’ve seen lapping the Nurburgring over the last few years, dubbed the 911 Dakar. No version of the 911 is what you’d call common, but the Dakar will be rare. Just 2500 will be offered worldwide, with pricing to kick off at $491,400 before on-roads costs. The optional Rally Design Package adds $54,730 before on-roads to that sticker. Deliveries of the Dakar kick off in the second half of 2023 for Australia. Under the skin, the Dakar borrows from a number of different 911 models. Power comes from a 3.0-litre twin-turbo flat-six making 353kW of power and 570Nm of torque, the same as you get in a Carrera GTS, mated with an eight-speed dual-clutch transmission and all-wheel drive. The 100km/h sprint takes a claimed 3.4 seconds. The engine mounts have been lifted from a GT3, and there’s active roll stabilisation on hand to keep the taller body in check. How much taller? At a standstill the Dakar is 50mm taller than a regular Carrera, and it’s able to be raised a further 30mm when conditions demand it. To use Porsche’s words, the “lift system is not designed merely for driving over obstacles at low speeds, but is rather an integral part of the re-tuned suspension. The ‘high level’ setting is available for ambitious off-road adventures”. A set of reinforced road tyres is offered, but the standard rubber is more off-road focused: A set of Pirelli Scorpion All Terrain Plus tyres measuring 245/45 R19 at the front and 295/40 R20 at the rear, with 9mm-deep tread and reinforced sidewalls. Two new drive modes are offered: Rallye, which shunts power to the rear axle to liven the car up on loose surfaces, and Off-Road for when the going gets rough. Both modes have a new launch control system designed for loose surfaces, too. If the raised ride height isn’t enough of a giveaway, the Dakar will stand out from other 911 models thanks to its rear wing, red aluminium towing hooks, wider body, and external 12V outlet on the roof. Inside, the Dakar features fixed bucket seats up front, and no rear seats. Thinner glass is standard, as is a lightweight battery, to help keep the weight down relative to the wider 911 range. If that isn’t enough, the Rallye Design Package brings a two-tone white and blue finish with red and gold stripes, in a nod to the heavily reworked 911 that won the 1984 Paris-Dakar rally. MORE: Everything Porsche 911 View the full article
  5. Lamborghini’s high-riding Huracan has been unveiled in its “real skin”, ahead of a full reveal later this month. Full details of the Lamborghini Huracan Sterrato will be announced on November 30 at its official world premiere at the Art Basel in Miami. The Sterrato is described as providing a super sports car driving experience even “away from the asphalt on loose or dirt surfaces.” Similarly to the recently unveiled Porsche 911 Dakar edition, the Sterrato is built to take on rally-like terrain with raised suspension and a tougher exterior featuring bespoke LED rally spotlights. The new photos reveal features such as roof racks and underbody protection. Although not confirmed, the Sterrato will likely be all-wheel-drive. Also noticeable is a roof scoop at the rear of the vehicle to make space for the combustion engine’s air intake, as well as black cladding on the front and rear wheel arches. The high-riding Sterrato is to be the final variant of the V10 Huracan supercar line introduced in 2014, set to be replaced in 2024 with a plug-in hybrid (PHEV) model. Lamborghini is aiming to have a wholly electrified line-up by 2024. The company says it has drawn from off-roading experience gained in the production of its Urus SUV and is using this to create a “super sports car for challenging environments” in this farewell Huracan edition. While we will have to wait until later this month to know the full specifications of the Sterrato, the production car doesn’t appear to stray far from the concept vehicle revealed in 2019, which featured a 5.2-litre naturally-aspirated V10 engine producing 470kW. It was also raised by 47mm. The concept model also had four-wheel drive, four-wheel steering, modified suspension and torque vectoring calibrated for off-road driving. The launch of this new iteration is the final boost in what has been an extremely successful year for Lamborghini, where it is predicted to exceed all previous sales records and is recording profits up by 70 per cent. Speaking on orders for the new Huracan Sterrato, Lamborghini director for the APAC region Francesco Scardaoni said that there are already plenty of “expressions of interest and deposits paid to our dealers, including in Australia.” Mr Scardaoni said customers are asking questions about things like “ground clearance and pitch angle”, which aren’t usually of concern to the average Huracan buyer. View the full article
  6. Porsche has lifted the veil on what to expect from its upcoming battery-powered Macan SUV, in a series of briefings given to overseas media. Autocar reports the electric Macan will feature electric all-wheel drive making up to 450kW of power and 1000Nm of torque. Although the motors will be similar to those featured in the Taycan, their magnet arrangement has been reworked for better power density, and new silicon-carbide semiconductors are on hand to reduce incremental power losses. According to Autocar, the PPE platform underpinning the new Macan EV supports rear-wheel drive. At launch however, the Macan EV will be offered with only all-wheel drive powertrains capable of switching off the front motor when coasting to save battery power. Speaking of batteries, Jalopnik reports the car will use a lithium-ion battery pack with around 100kWh of capacity. The biggest pack in the Taycan, which is built on a different platform dubbed J1, is 93.4kWh. Like the Taycan, the Macan Electric will have an 800V architecture that allows for charging at up to 270kW. That’s good for a 25-minute charge from five to 80 per cent. Range hasn’t been confirmed, but Jalopnik quotes a Porsche spokesperson who says it will have “a lot more” than the Taycan and its 500km best. The rear tyres will be wider than the fronts, in a bid to make the Macan the sportiest option in its class. Torque vectoring will feature on the rear axle thanks to a clutch-actuated mechanical differential, while the front axle will feature an open differential to keep wheelspin in check. Rear-wheel steering, two-stage air suspension, and adaptive dampers will all feature as well. The new platform will allow the Macan to feature a ‘frunk’ under the bonnet, too. The PPE platform underpinning the Macan will also feature underneath the electric Audi Q6 e-tron. MORE: Everything Porsche Macan View the full article
  7. Lamborghini is coming off its best-ever nine months of sales, and is showing no signs of slowing down. “We already have 18-19 months waiting period for a new car,” Lamborghini CEO Stephan Winkelmann told Fox Business. “We are selling more cars than we are able to produce.” With the Aventador retired and the Huracan approaching end of life, the Urus SUV – recently updated to feature Performante and S models – will represent the bulk of its deliveries into the end of 2022 and the beginning of 2023. Moving forward, however, there are new models coming. The successor to the Aventador will feature a hybrid-assisted V12 engine, with Fox reporting Lamborghini already holds 3000 orders. According to Mr Winkelmann, the new V12 will sound “amazing”. The Huracan will also be replaced in the coming years, but not before the high-riding Sterrato arrives to farewell it. In 2022, it’s on track to deliver a record number of cars. With 7430 deliveries in the first nine months of 2022, the brand is up 8.0 per cent on that same point in 2021. Given it delivered 8405 cars across the whole of 2021, its best-ever year, the Raging Bull is rampaging towards its strongest year of sales yet. Profits are also up by close to 70 per cent, driven by “the growth in average revenue per car (thanks to the product mix and increased customisations), and the favourable trend in exchange rates”. View the full article
  8. Porsche will unveil the new rally-inspired 911 Dakar at the Los Angeles motor show on November 16. The model is named for Porsche’s victory in the 1984 Paris-Dakar rally in a modified 911. The new variant will feature lifted suspension and all-terrain tyres, as well as 911 GT3-style nostrils up front, wheel arch cladding, and a raisable spoiler. Powertrain specifics and details on the upgrades the Dakar will have over the standard 911 have yet to be confirmed, but development driver Lars Kern said, “I am very satisfied with the handling on loose surfaces. Even the ABS is optimised for braking on gravel”. Porsche has taken the 911 Dakar through an intensive testing regime of more than 500,000km of driving across a mix of terrains. Some 10,000km of this testing was off-road in iconic locations such as the Château de Lastours test track in France, which was used to demonstrate the car’s abilities on a typical rally track. Two-time world rally champion Walter Röhrl tested the 911 Dakar in Arjeplog, Sweden, a test ground used by Porsche to demonstrate its traction control, handling, and its ability to navigate snowy conditions on a frozen lake. The 911 Dakar was also put to its paces in sandy Dubai and Morocco, where it was driven up 50 metre dunes in 45-degree heat. “Especially here, the 911 Dakar can make the most of its conceptual advantages – the combination of low weight, higher ground clearance, a powerful rear-mounted engine and the short wheelbase make for an exhilarating driving experience,” said Frank Moser, vice president for the 911 and 718 model lines. Porsche has also recently sent its experimental version of the 911 Carrera 4S to Chile to climb the side of the world’s highest volcano, Ojos del Salado, with modifications such as a pair of portal axles and lower gear ratios. The 911 Dakar pays homage to one of Porsche’s most legendary motorsport victories. The 1984 Paris-Dakar Rally saw Rene Metgé and Dominique Lemoyne victorious. They traversed tough terrains from sand dunes to mud in a heavily reworked, four-wheel drive version of the 911 Turbo chassis called the 953. Porsche isn’t the only brand readying a higher-riding sports car. Lamborghini will reveal a jacked-up version of its Huracan in December called the Sterrato. Click an image to view the full gallery. MORE: Everything Porsche 911 View the full article
  9. Porsche is celebrating the production of 100,000 Taycan EVs at its main plant in Zuffenhausen, Germany. It has taken the car-maker just over three years to achieve this milestone, with production starting in September 2019. The 100,000th Taycan, destined for a customer in the United Kingdom, is a Turbo S variant painted in Neptune Blue. The Porsche Taycan Turbo S is currently the flagship variant in the lineup, powered by a dual-motor all-wheel drive setup producing 560kW of power and 1050Nm of torque. Taycan Turbo S Porsche claims the Turbo S can do the 0-100km/h sprint in 2.8 seconds and flat out you’ll be doing 260km/h. “We are very pleased to have reached this milestone in production history so quickly – despite the recent challenges posed by the semiconductor shortage and the volatile COVID situation,” said Porsche vice president model line Taycan Kevin Giek. “With the Taycan, we have made a decidedly successful start in the electric age.” The Porsche Taycan launched in Australia in early 2021 and there have been a total of 943 examples sold locally to date. Taycan 4 Cross Turismo At launch there were just three all-wheel drive variants available in the sedan body style locally – the Taycan 4S, Taycan Turbo, and Taycan Turbo S. Since then Porsche has introduced two wagon body styles to the range called the Taycan Cross Turismo and Taycan Sport Turismo, with the latter not offered locally. The German carmaker has also introduced an entry-level rear-wheel drive variant called the Taycan, as well as the Taycan GTS which slots between the Taycan 4S and Taycan Turbo in the lineup. In August this year Porsche reclaimed the lap record for electric production cars at the Nurburgring from a Tesla Model S Plaid with a Taycan Turbo S. Spied high-performance variant prototype It clocked a 7:33.350 lap around the Green Hell. The record-breaking car was fitted with a Performance kit by Porsche Tequipment which included 21-inch wheels with Pirelli P Zero Corsa tyres, and an updated version of the car’s 4D Chassis Control system. It’s unclear what Porsche has in store for the Taycan next. Our spy photographers recently captured what could be a new high-performance variant with a large rear wing and an aggressive front bumper. They also snapped regular sedan and wagon variants with camouflage on the front and back, hinting at an impending mid-life update. MORE: Everything Porsche Taycan MORE: Porsche Taycan Turbo S takes back EV Nurburgring record MORE: Porsche Taycan update, high-performance variant spied View the full article
  10. Lamborghini has confirmed its plans to reveal the high-riding Huracan Sterrato at the 2022 Art Basel fair in Miami, Florida, which runs from December 1 to 3. This announcement was made as part of the company’s third quarter of 2022 financial results, where it confirmed it’s on track to have its best-ever yearly sales result. As reported in August this year, the Huracan Sterrato will be the final variant in the line of V10 Huracan supercars that started in 2014. It will also be the last Lamborghini to be sold without any form of electric assistance, as the company announced its entire range will be hybrid by 2024. The Huracan’s successor will have a plug-in hybrid (PHEV) drivetrain and has a launch date locked in for some point in 2024. A successor to the Aventador will be revealed next year and feature a new, naturally-aspirated V12 engine mated to a hybrid system. An Urus PHEV is also confirmed to be revealed sometime in 2024. Lamborghini recently teased the Huracan Sterrato in a short video uploaded to YouTube, where it was racing a mountain bike along windy gravels roads. A number of camouflaged prototypes have been spied too. Pointing out the obvious, the Huracan Sterrato has raised suspension. The concept car from 2019 it’s based on was 47mm taller than stock. Production teaserConcept It has also been spied with a number of rugged exterior design elements including a front light bar, wheel arches, roof rails, and a roof scoop. It’s not clear what changes Lamborghini will make to the 5.2-litre naturally-aspirated V10 powertrain in the Huracan Sterrato. For context, in the Huracan STO this engine produces 470kW and 600Nm. It’s possible the Huracan Sterrato will feature a retuned all-wheel drive system to work better on gravel and snow, like the concept. Lamborghini director for the APAC region Francesco Scardaoni confirmed in August this year there are already plenty of “expressions of interest and deposits paid to our dealers, including in Australia” for the Huracan Sterrato, even though the “order system isn’t officially open yet”. Mr Scardaoni said customers are asking questions about things like “ground clearance and pitch angle”, which aren’t usually of concern to the average Huracan buyer. Lamborghini isn’t alone in giving its sports car a rally-inspired makeover. Porsche has been spied a number of times testing a 911 with a taller ride height, potentially to feature on a production car called the 911 Dakar. MORE: Everything Lamborghini Huracan MORE: Lamborghini Huracan Sterrato high-rider to be ‘final’ variant MORE: 2023 Lamborghini Huracan Sterrato high-rider spied again View the full article
  11. Lamborghini has sold its last non-hybrid V12, and is gearing up to farewell its naturally-aspirated V10, but the change hasn’t hurt its sales. With 7430 deliveries in the first nine months of 2022, the brand is up 8.0 per cent on that same point in 2021. Given it delivered 8405 cars across the whole of 2021, its best-ever year, the Raging Bull is rampaging towards its strongest year of sales yet. Profits are also up by close to 70 per cent, driven by “the growth in average revenue per car (thanks to the product mix and increased customisations), and the favourable trend in exchange rates”. The Huracan has seen big growth relative to 2021, on the back of the arrival of the new Tecnica variant and the rollout of the STO. The future looks vastly different for Lamborghini, which recently slayed its biggest bull. Production of the Aventador has ended after 11 years and a total of 11,465 cars built. Based on units built, the Aventador was more successful than the Countach, Diablo, and Murcielago combined. The supercar, which debuted at the Geneva motor show in 2011, has spawned more than eight derivatives and more than 10 one-off or ultra-limited editions over the course of its life. What comes next isn’t 100 per cent clear, but we know the Aventador successor will feature a new, naturally-aspirated V12 engine mated with a hybrid system. According to Lamborghini CEO Stephan Winkelmann, the new V12 will sound “amazing”. The Huracan will also be replaced in the coming years, but not before the high-riding Sterrato arrives to farewell it. View the full article
  12. Forget the Cayenne Coupe Turbo GT, there’s a new contender for craziest SUV in the Porsche range. An ‘experimental’ version of the 911 Carrera 4S has scaled the highest volcano in the world, Ojos del Salado in Chile. At 19,708ft (6007m) tall, it forced the development team to tackle temperatures as low as -30 degrees, boulder-filled glaciers, and impenetrable walls of snow. The biggest change to the 911 are a pair of portal axles, which raise ground clearance on what was once a pavement-hugging sports car to a Land Rover Defender-beating 350mm. There are manually-activated differential locks on both axles, and Porsche has fitted what it calls the Warp-Connector. According to the company, it’s a motorsport-derived system that ensures there’s a mechanical link between all four wheels to make sure traction is maintained even when the body is flexing over extreme terrain. Porsche has fitted lower gear ratios for better performance at a crawl, and to compensate for the swollen off-road tyres that replace the low-profile rubber standard on the road car. The cooling hardware for the engine has been moved higher on the car, allowing more space beneath it for better ground clearance, and there are lightweight aramid bash plates under the body to protect all the critical oily bits. Porsche says the underbody protection allows for “sliding over rocks”. “This was a truly memorable and special moment in a place that’s both beautiful and brutal at the same time – I guess the only machines anywhere in the world higher than us today were aircraft!” said Romain Dumas, driver and team leader. “For the team and the car it was about learning – and right out of the box, the car was tough and nimble. We were hard on ourselves and really put it in the deep end for its first test, yet it felt at home.” Although it’s unlikely we’ll ever see an off-road 911 with the same level of hardware as the car that took on the volcano in showrooms, Porsche has been seen testing what may be known as a 911 Dakar at the Nurburgring with a raised ride height. While the new Dakar could become the first of its kind since the 1978 911 SC Safari, Porsche has toyed with reviving the idea before. In late 2020 the automaker released a clutch of photos detailing 15 concepts it had developed but never publicly revealed before, one of which was a 911 Safari. MORE: Everything Porsche 911 View the full article
  13. A little while back, we got an email from a lady named Jess. Jess said that her son Oscar watches all of our YouTube videos and would absolutely love to meet me and the team. Jess also told us in the email that Oscar suffers from Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Firstly, we were pretty thrilled that there was actually a regular viewer of our channel, let alone somebody that wanted to meet the rest of the team. But secondly, we thought this would be a great opportunity to not only meet Oscar and organise a fun day out with him, but it’d also be the perfect chance to raise some money for charity. So we put our heads together, shot off a few emails and came up with an idea for a fun day out for Oscar. The legends at Porsche Australia flicked us the keys to a Porsche 992 911 GT3 and a 992 911 GTS to use for Oscar’s day, Queensland Raceway booked us some track time and our resident race driver, Chris Atkinson, joined us for some hot laps and to help out with our drag race. We also committed to donating all of the money earned from Oscar’s YouTube video to the Save Our Sons Duchenne muscular dystrophy foundation. Each time you watch it and see an ad, it’s another bit of money we’ll be able to donate. If you’re feeling even more generous, you can open the video on YouTube and click on the ‘Thanks’ button to donate a little more to the cause. Every cent is greatly appreciated! We snuck up to Oscar’s house in the GT3 to surprise him and pick him up for the big day out – he didn’t know anything about what we were doing or what we had planned. Oscar climbed into the GT3 and the chatterbox revealed he knew more about cars than all of us combined! Our next stop was Alborz’s house where Oscar had the chance to crawl into and all over Alborz’s collection of cars. We gave him the task of picking a car that we could take with us to our next stop McDonalds, but also on to Queensland Raceway where we had a drag race planned with our two Porsches. Maccas saw Oscar meet the boys and girls in blue, giving him a chance to check out the Kia Stinger highway patrol car, play with a set of hand cuffs and throw his mum under the bus for allegedly running a red light the week before. Oscar also had the chance to collect his lunch from the drive-thru in Alborz’s Lamborghini Huracan Performante, which he picked from Alborz’s garage a little earlier. When we arrived at Queensland Raceway, Atko set some lap times for the GT3 and GTS before we put Oscar in the car for a hot lap with the terrifying rally racer. Oscar’s day was capped out with a chance to host a drag race video with me. Oscar did a great job introducing and joining in. My ultimate hope was to demolish Alborz’s Lamborghini with either the GT3 or GTS, but unfortunately it didn’t pan out. After the GTS was knocked out in a head-to-head with the GT3, the GT3 lost twice against the Performante (by the smallest margin on one occasion!). We had an awesome time out with Oscar and hope that this video can generate enough views for us to donate a meaningful amount to charity. And again, if you’re feeling generous, hit the Thanks button on the video to donate more than the amount we receive for a single view. Click on any of the images to open a full gallery of images from Oscar’s day out. View the full article
  14. A little while back, we got an email from a lady named Jess. Jess said that her son Oscar watches all of our YouTube videos and would absolutely love to meet me and the team. Jess also told us in the email that Oscar suffers from Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Firstly, we were pretty thrilled that there was actually a regular viewer of our channel, let alone somebody that wanted to meet the rest of the team. But secondly, we thought this would be a great opportunity to not only meet Oscar and organise a fun day out with him, but it’d also be the perfect chance to raise some money for charity. So we put our heads together, shot off a few emails and came up with an idea for a fun day out for Oscar. The legends at Porsche Australia flicked us the keys to a Porsche 992 911 GT3 and a 992 911 GTS to use for Oscar’s day, Queensland Raceway booked us some track time and our resident race driver, Chris Atkinson, joined us for some hot laps and to help out with our drag race. We also committed to donating all of the money earned from Oscar’s YouTube video to the Save Our Sons Duchenne muscular dystrophy foundation. Each time you watch it and see an ad, it’s another bit of money we’ll be able to donate. If you’re feeling even more generous, you can open the video on YouTube and click on the ‘Thanks’ button to donate a little more to the cause. Every cent is greatly appreciated! We snuck up to Oscar’s house in the GT3 to surprise him and pick him up for the big day out – he didn’t know anything about what we were doing or what we had planned. Oscar climbed into the GT3 and the chatterbox revealed he knew more about cars than all of us combined! Our next stop was Alborz’s house where Oscar had the chance to crawl into and all over Alborz’s collection of cars. We gave him the task of picking a car that we could take with us to our next stop McDonalds, but also on to Queensland Raceway where we had a drag race planned with our two Porsches. Maccas saw Oscar meet the boys and girls in blue, giving him a chance to check out the Kia Stinger highway patrol car, play with a set of hand cuffs and throw his mum under the bus for allegedly running a red light the week before. Oscar also had the chance to collect his lunch from the drive-thru in Alborz’s Lamborghini Huracan Performante, which he picked from Alborz’s garage a little earlier. When we arrived at Queensland Raceway, Atko set some lap times for the GT3 and GTS before we put Oscar in the car for a hot lap with the terrifying rally racer. Oscar’s day was capped out with a chance to host a drag race video with me. Oscar did a great job introducing and joining in. My ultimate hope was to demolish Alborz’s Lamborghini with either the GT3 or GTS, but unfortunately it didn’t pan out. After the GTS was knocked out in a head-to-head with the GT3, the GT3 lost twice against the Performante (by the smallest margin on one occasion!). We had an awesome time out with Oscar and hope that this video can generate enough views for us to donate a meaningful amount to charity. And again, if you’re feeling generous, hit the Thanks button on the video to donate more than the amount we receive for a single view. Click on any of the images to open a full gallery of images from Oscar’s day out. View the full article
  15. I’m not saying the wagon-style Porsche Taycan 4 Cross Turismo has more aesthetic appeal than the sedan-bodied Taycan, but from the rear in Dolomite Silver Metallic, it’s pure addiction. As far as full-blown, high-performance EVs go, it doesn’t come any better than the Porsche Taycan. Low-slung, almost two metres wide and the epitome of a futuristic Porsche for the here and now. And, yet it had its debut back in 2019 – based on the Mission E concept, which we first saw at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show. That’s forward vision at its very best. Somehow, even the punters know it’s a Porsche at a glance, and that alone spells a triumph in design; given the Taycan looks nothing like any other model in the entire range, yet the profile is exactly what you might envisage a fully-electric Porsche to look like. The Taycan 4 Cross Turismo (it’s a mouthful) is easily the more versatile solution in the Taycan range, itself emanating from the Porsche Mission E Cross Turismo, first shown in 2018 at the Geneva Motor Show, with raised suspension and a longer wagon (estate) body, similar to the Panamera Sport Turismo but built on Porsche’s fully electric J1-platform. Judging from the rear view, few will notice the 20-millimetre increase in ride height the Cross Turismo thanks to its slightly wider profile over the regular Taycan, and still low-riding profile all-round. Initially, I didn’t warm to the Cross Turismo, but after living with it for a while I’ve come full circle and now prefer it over the Taycan, given its inherent five-door practicality and the extra load-hauling ability which comes with it – not to mention that wide rear end I’m so infatuated with. A proper head turner even in this entry-level guise, complete with protection plates, sills and cladding, and still a lot less expensive than a base 911, if Porsche ownership and environmental sensitivity are your principle goals here. WATCH: Paul’s video review of the Taycan Turbo Cross Turismo How much does the Porsche Taycan 4 Cross Turismo cost? The Taycan Cross Turismo range kicks off with the Taycan 4 Cross Turismo tested here, which is priced from $180,400 before on-road costs and options – there are always option boxes you’ll want to tick at this price point. Sitting squarely in the middle of the model range is the Taycan 4S Cross Turismo, priced from $209,600 before on-roads, while the top-spec Taycan Turbo Cross Turismo, starts at $284,600 before on-roads. Unlike the regular Taycan range, there’s no ‘Turbo S’ variant in the Cross Turismo line-up. There are 17 colours to pick from in total including just two (white and black) that are standard while the remaining 15 paints attract a premium of either $2300 for the metallic colours or $5000 for the so-called ‘Special Colours’. Paints-to-sample are pricier still at $18,490 a pop, or Individual colour development paint-to-sample is priced at $23,740. Rivals to the Porsche Taycan 4 Cross Turismo are few and far between (if at all) in this rarefied EV segment, but we’d suggest you take a look at the BMW iX xDrive50 Sport, priced from $174,900 before on-roads or the ballistic iX M60 version (0-100km/h in 3.8 or better) at $222,900. What is the Porsche Taycan 4 Cross Turismo like on the inside? It might ride 20mm higher (up to 30mm with the Off-Road Package), but lowering yourself into the superbly shaped Porsche front buckets feels no different to climbing into my 911 – okay, it’s a tad easier, given Taycan’s seats are slightly broader with more padding and all the better for it. The cockpit, though, is pure Porsche at its most contemporary. Devoid of any-and-all buttons or knobs, except for a couple of roller switches on the trademark three-spoke sports steering wheel can be cause for immediate concern, but you soon get the hang of it. There’s the one exception to that. The air vents aren’t physically adjustable and require you to navigate through a few steps on the lower touchscreen, so it’s not exactly intuitive. The HVAC screen also doubles as a battery condition display, especially good to view Taycan’s charge state and remaining range with graphics to match. The super-size driver’s display is another brilliant bit of kit. Fully configurable but with a digital version of Porsche’s trademark tachometer smack-bang-in-the-middle and flanked by two more digital dials, both of which are fully customisable depending on the drive mode selected. The start button is on the right and is touch activated with haptic feedback – just remember to hold it down for a second or two when powering down the Taycan. On the other side of the steering wheel is an upright version of the 911’s Braun-style shift lever (down for drive, up for reverse), with a Park button in the same housing. All of it ergonomically flawless. The infotainment display is properly integrated into the dash (is anyone else over the ubiquitous floating screens?), housing a wealth of information including Sport Chrono, Navigation and general infotainment functions. Its super-sharp with fast response even when using wireless Apple CarPlay. It’s not exactly a luxury environment like BMW’s iX range of SUVs, but the materials are first-rate and the tech is cutting-edge, while the seats (front and rear) mirror any other Porsche pew. More than anything though, it’s a fine, fit-for-purpose instrument for those that enjoy best-in-class dynamics in their EV as only Porsche can do – entry-level grade notwithstanding. Our tester was configured as a 4+1 – meaning even the rear seats resemble the bolstered buckets up front, complete with centre armrest when it’s not in use as an occasional fifth seat. There are also four points of back-row ventilation and a comfortable amount of rear legroom. Better still, rear-seat passengers will enjoy an extra 30mm of headroom compared with the regular Taycan, thanks to the slightly higher roofline of the Cross Turismo. Storage is pretty good too, with dual cupholders (separated), decent centre-console bin and a bit of extra storage under the floating bridge, along with four USB-C ports split between front and rear seats. Overall luggage space is as it should be in a wagon of this size with 446L behind the rear seats, expanding to 1212L with the rear seats folded (dead flat) for easy loading of stuff like boards, bikes and golf clubs. There’s another 84L of useful luggage space in the ‘frunk’. What’s under the bonnet? The Porsche Taycan Cross Turismo features a dual-motor (all-wheel drive), all-electric powertrain and a 93.4kWh Performance Battery Plus Pack. In the base Taycan 4 it makes 350kW of power and 500Nm of torque, good for a claimed range of 437km and a 0-100km/h sprint in 5.1 seconds. In the 4S, it generates 420kW of power and a maximum of 650Nm of torque with a 0-100km/h dash in 4.1 seconds. The Turbo produces 500kW of power and 850Nm of torque. Claimed range is up to 452km on the WLTP test cycle for the 4S and Turbo. It can hit 100km/h from a standing start in an eye-popping 3.3 seconds. Interestingly, the Taycan uses a two-speed transmission (most EVs use a single-speed transmission). On the charging front the Taycan platform supports 800V charging, along with a mix of single-and three-phase AC charging. In its regular trim it can achieve up to 11kW of charging on AC, but an optional three-phase 22kW charger can be selected to improve charge capacity. DC charging occurs at 800V and peaks at 262kW, with an average charge rate of 197kW over a typical charge cycle. It’s a pretty impressive figure when compared to other fast-charge capable EVs on the market. Porsche has also fitted the Taycan with charge ports on both sides of the vehicle on the front quarter panel. One side caters for AC and DC charging, while the other side will only do AC charging. Like other vehicles with chargers located further down the sides, it can be a little tricky to reach the charge port on chargers with shorter DC cable runs. How much juice does it use? The official claim is 28.7kWh/100km and on test we achieved a little over 25kWh/100km. Over the week-long test period, we only had to top-up once on a 50kW fast charger, which took us from around 50 per cent battery capacity to 96 per cent in around 45 mins or so. How does the Porsche Taycan 4 Cross Turismo drive? It’s quite a feat, but Porsche, unlike any other carmaker in this high-end EV segment, has pulled off some magic with its Taycan model range. From the moment you get behind the wheel to the end of your journey, it’s a 100 per cent all-Porsche experience. It’s a holistic approach that starts with the driving position and feedback through the steering wheel and other controls like throttle and brake pedal feel that will leave you gobsmacked and never wanting to hand the car back. Anything else feels second rate. Most times you simply get in and put your foot on the brake and the Taycan automatically awakens, simply requiring the driver to flick the shifter paddle one way or the other, and then you’re off and running. It’s that simple – and of course there’s no warming the car up when you’re in an EV – you just go. The default drive mode is Normal and that’s just fine for daily commute, but more often than not I found myself rotating the drive mode controller on the steering wheel around to Sport or Sport+ (with Sport Chrono) for the sheer thrill of pulling away from the traffic lights before your combustion engine comrades have even moved a centimetre. Tipping the scales at 2245kg (sans driver), the Taycan Cross Turismo isn’t exactly a lightweight, but somehow it defies its sheer heft and five-metre-long length. Behind the wheel is simply doesn’t feel like you’re piloting a big, heavy wagon, not in the slightest. In fact, you’ll want to drive it like a 911 – and it’ll surely oblige. In base Taycan 4 trim you might think it’s just not quick enough, but I’d argue a 5.1-second sprint is plenty fast enough, especially if you’ve dialled up Sport Plus. That alone will leave most others in the dust thanks to most of its 500Nm peak coming on-song from the get-go. Drivers also have the option of choosing a regen braking setting in two quick steps using the infotainment screen, which I used more often than not, given the energy recuperation and almost-one-pedal driving. The only problem being it won’t hold the setting – so you’ll need to select it every time you go anywhere. Same goes for the Jetson’s-style ‘Porsche Electric Sport Sound’ feature. It’s a welcome addition when pushing along in Sport, but a tad annoying when running around in the burbs, unless of course you’ve got the kids with you, in which case they’ll love it. While Porsche has a reputation for engineering an outstanding ride/handling balance across their entire ICE model range but especially its SUVs, it’s also managed to achieve a similar set-up with its EVs. Taycan’s three-chamber adaptive air-suspension system is one reason for Cross Turismo’s excellent ride and handling, but it also gets the same suspension layout as its Taycan sports sedan sibling; double wishbones up front, with a multi-link axle and double wishbones down back. Switching from one drive mode to another evokes an instant response from the damping department – though even in Normal, the Cross Turismo can still hustle along. Turn in is sharp and accurate, while the steering feels more connected and delivers greater feedback than any other battery electric vehicle we’ve driven to date. Braking tends to feel a little remote in EVs, and it’s similar in the Porsche, although, pedal progression is nicely calibrated with stopping power, so its feels more natural than its rivals. What do you get? Taycan 4 Cross Turismo highlights: 16.8-inch curved driver’s instrument display10.9-inch touchscreen infotainment systemSatellite navigationWireless Apple CarPlayWired Android AutoDAB+ digital radioHead-up displayAdaptive air suspensionAdaptive cruise control incl. traffic jam assist6-piston front, 4-piston rear cast-iron brakesPower steering plusTyre pressure monitoringLED headlightsAutomatic headlightsDual-zone climate control10-speaker sound systemPower tailgatePartial leather interiorHeated leather-wrapped steering wheel Taycan 4S Cross Turismo adds: 20-inch alloy wheels14-way powered front seats14-speaker sound systemHeated, ventilated front seats Taycan Turbo Cross Turismo adds: 10-piston front, four-piston rear PCSB brakesMatrix LED headlights incl. Porsche Dynamic Light System Plus4-zone climate controlHeated rear seatsPorsche Dynamic Chassis ControlFull leather interiorStainless steel pedals Our Taycan 4 Cross Turismo was fitted with the following options: 20-inch Taycan Turbo Aero Design wheels: $5270Matrix LED headlights in Glacier Ice Blue incl. Porsche Dynamic Light System Plus: $4610On-board AC charger with 22kW: $3500Off-Road Design Package: $3450Bose surround sound system: $2840Interior Package in Aluminium Rhombus: $2500Sport Chrono Package: $2360Dolomite Silver Metallic: $2300Light strip with ‘PORSCHE’ in Glacier Ice Blue: $1500Electric charging cover: $1310Home Energy Manager: $1150Porsche Electric Sport Sound: $10504+1 seats: $1000Seat heating (front): $910Ambient lighting: $890‘PORSCHE’ logo courtesy lights These added list of options also bumped-up the price of our tester to a cool $215,640 plus on-roads, so it would be wise to do a like-for-like comparison with the Taycan 4S Cross Turismo before you start ticking those option boxes. Is the Porsche Taycan 4 Cross Turismo safe? While the Porsche Taycan doesn’t have a safety rating from local ANCAP just yet, it achieved five stars in crash testing conducted by Euro NCAP in 2019. The rating applies to all Taycan variants. The Taycan returned 85 per cent for adult occupant protection, 83 per cent for child occupant protection, 70 per cent for vulnerable road user protection, and 73 per cent for safety assist. Autonomous emergency braking (AEB), lane-keep assist, and blind-spot monitoring are standard fitment, along with adaptive cruise control and nine airbags. How much does the Porsche Taycan 4 Cross Turismo cost to run? The Porsche Taycan Cross Turismo is backed by a three-year, unlimited-kilometre warranty. There’s also an eight-year/160,000km warranty on the battery. It still lags behind most of the premium market, which has moved to offer greater than three years of warranty coverage (except BMW who is also sticking with three years). Maintenance is required every 12 months or 15,000km – whichever comes first. Buyers can prepay for three, four or five years of servicing, which comes in at $2995, $4495 and $5495 respectively. It’s pricey no matter which way you look at it. CarExpert’s Take on the Porsche Taycan 4 Cross Turismo Before writing this review, I would have said the Taycan sedan was the looker in the model range. Now, I’m not so sure. The Cross Turismo is more unique, more special and by virtue of its estate body, a far more versatile Porsche EV that gives precious little away to the regular Taycan in the ride and handling department. Actually, it handles the bumps slightly better and never once feels like you’re steering a large wagon, even when you’re having fun in the twisties. Then, there’s the fact it’s an EV, but not just any EV. It’s a Porsche first and foremost, and perhaps the most accomplished EV money can buy right now – even in this entry-level guise. Click the images for the full gallery MORE: Everything Porsche Taycan View the full article
  16. Porsche‘s high-riding 911 variant, which could wear the Dakar name, has been spied once again but it’s still unclear when it’ll finally be revealed. Prototypes of the Dakar have been spied in the same all-black camouflage for over two years now. This particular prototype, spied at the Nurburgring, appears to be largely the same as the previously-spied version with the 911 GT3-style nostrils on the front boot. There also appears to be some wheel arch cladding, and a 911 Turbo-style spoiler at the rear. Our spy photographers noted the 911 Dakar prototype did two rounds of track testing at the Green Hell and found the ride height during one of the session was higher than the other. It’s most obvious when looking at the wheel arches. This points toward the car receiving some form of air suspension that allows it to raise up and down. It’s not clear what will power the 911 Dakar, but it’s likely to feature all-wheel drive given its off-road focus. While the new high-riding 911 might be the first of its kind since the 1978 911 SC Safari, Porsche has toyed with reviving the idea before. In late 2020 the carmaker released a clutch of photos detailing 15 concepts it had developed but never publicly revealed before, one of which was a 911 Safari. Lamborghini is also gearing up to reveal a high-riding version of its Huracan supercar before the end of the year. Known as the Huracan Sterrato, this Lamborghini is inspired by the wild 2019 Steratto concept and will be the “final” variant in the line of V10 Huracans that started in 2014. Click an image to view the full gallery. MORE: Everything Porsche 911 MORE: 2023 Porsche 911 Dakar spied View the full article
  17. Bentley has revealed a new limited edition version of its Bentayga plug-in hybrid (PHEV) SUV that is “focused on sustainability”. The Bentley Bentayga Odyssean Edition is limited to 70 examples worldwide. Australian customers will be able to enquire at their preferred dealer in February next year, with the first customer cars arriving in the third quarter of 2023. The limited edition is inspired by the 2019 EXP 100 GT concept and has a range of “environmentally friendly” materials inside the cabin. These materials include open-pore Koa veneer on the centre console, additional Piano Linen veneer, and panels of tweed made from 100 per cent British wool. The interior is accented by a tri-tone colour combination which consists of Linen-coloured main hide and a choice of five secondary hide colours – Burnt Oak, Porpoise, Cricketball, Brunel or Beluga. The Bentayga Odyssean Edition can be specified either as a four- or five-seater, and features the so-called Front Seat Comfort Specification as standard, which offers up to 22 ways of adjustability plus heating and ventilation. On the outside the Bentayga Odyssean Edition has painted Pale Brodgar accents on its 22-inch ten-spoke wheels, front and rear bumpers, headlight and tail light surrounds, and lower body side chrome. There are six colours that Bentley has curated to harmonise with the Pale Brodgar accents, however you can also choose from the full Bentley palette of over 60 colours. Like the updated Bentayga Hybrid, the Bentayga Odyssean Edition is powered by a 3.0-litre twin-turbo V6 petrol engine, mated to a 100kW/400Nm electric motor generator. Total system outputs are 340kW of power and 700Nm of torque. Bentley claims it can do the 0-60mph (0-97km/h) sprint in 5.1 seconds, and flat out you’ll be doing 254km/h. Featuring a 18.0kWh lithium-ion battery pack, the Bentayga has a claimed electric range of 43km on the stricter WLTP cycle. As previously reported, Bentley plans to offer only PHEV and electric vehicles by 2026, as it gears up to go all-electric by 2030. The British carmaker has also pledged to reveal its first electric vehicle (EV) in 2025 and bring it to market in 2026. Overseas reports indicate the first EV will be an SUV, potentially a version of the next Bentayga or perhaps an all-new nameplate. It could be built on the PPE platform that will underpin the Porsche Macan EV, Audi Q6 e-tron, and the Audi A6 e-tron. Click an image to view the full gallery. MORE: Everything Bentley Bentayga MORE: 2023 Bentley Bentayga Hybrid gains more power View the full article
  18. Porsche is giving the base versions of 718 Boxster and Cayman a little extra style with the straightforwardly named Style Edition. The 718 Cayman Style Edition is priced at $125,800 before on-road costs, while the 718 Boxster Style Edition is priced at $128,600 before on-roads, or $3000 more than the entry-level 718s they’re based on. They’re available to order now, with deliveries commencing in the second half of 2023. The Style Edition models ride on 20-inch 718 Spyder wheels and feature black exhaust outlets and high-gloss silver ‘Porsche’ lettering. The 718 Boxster Style Edition gets ‘Boxster’ lettering embossed above the side windows. Porsche is offering the 718 Style Edition with two contrast packages – one black, one white – which feature decorative stripes at the front and lettering on the side, as well as black and white high-gloss finishes for the wheels and rear badging. They’re available in the distinctive Ruby Star Neo, a modern interpretation of the Ruby Star finish found in the 964-series Porsche 911 Carrera RS. Inside, they feature black leather upholstery with Crayon stitching, with illuminated stainless steel sill panels and embossed Porsche crests on the headrests. Standard equipment on Style Edition models also include: Bi-Xenon headlights with LED daytime running lightsPorsche Dynamic Light SystemBlind-spot monitoringReversing camera with front and rear parking sensorsKeyless entry and startApple CarPlaySatellite navigationDAB digital radioCruise controlAuto-dimming mirrorsHeated, leather-wrapped steering wheel14-way Sports seats with memoryHeated seatsDual-zone climate controlLight Design Package As is typical of a Porsche, however, there’s a wide range of extra-cost options that can be added. Power steering Plus is a no-cost option. Style Edition models are powered by a turbocharged 2.0-litre boxer four-cylinder engine producing 220kW of power and 380Nm of torque. A six-speed manual transmission is standard, with a seven-speed PDK optional. Opting for the auto cuts the 0-100km/h time down from 5.1 seconds to 4.9 seconds. Click an image to view the full gallery. MORE: Everything Porsche 718 View the full article
  19. Overall Track Performance It’s been a while since we have had a contender for the top of the leader board take to the track, it’s almost been 2 years with the Porsche 911 GT2 RS and 911 GT3 RS, sitting proudly in the top spots. And, despite this not being the new RS version, the new Porsche 911 GT3 has already beaten the previous version’s around the Nürburgring, so I knew it would be in with a chance. Our CarExpert test track is a good mixture of high- and low-speed corners with one decent straight, which also means that it’s not all down to outright power either; cars that are easy to handle and give good feedback also do really well. Firstly, this thing looks ready to race, its stance and presence on the road is just epic in my opinion, and this is something I usually don’t talk about in the reviews, but it looks fast just sitting in pit lane. Secondly, performance is important, but it is not always easy to extract that in four laps, yet with this new 911 GT3 I felt more comfortable than I ever had in a Porsche, and really feel like I got the most out of it. Now, onto the details! Engine The 4.0-litre naturally-aspirated flat six develops 375kW of power and 470Nm of torque, and feels even better than I remember. Smooth, linear and responsive, its lack of turbocharging is not missed one bit and absolutely designed with the track in mind. You feel so in control, and at the same time in awe of what this engine is capable of. The seamless overlap of the torque and power curve as it screams its way to the 9000rpm red line, is a delight to be in charge of. What blew my mind even more was the ability to bang out 0-100 in under 3.5 seconds consistently with a rear-driven naturally-aspirated drivetrain, getting down to a best of 3.44s. For me, that’s even more impressive than what electric cars are doing, even though it is not quite as quick in a straight line. It really has found the sweet spot of what a performance engine should be and the punishment it can handle. Braking I was really happy with the brakes and would say this is a slight improvement over the previous-generation 911 GT3. The biggest thing was building up some brake and tyre temperature on the first lap and once that happened, it was really dialled in. I even noticed when I went to do the braking test, after the car had cooled down, the braking performance really dropped away. I could feel the tyres skipping on the ground rather than biting into it, so it’s important to build up temperature before really pushing. Braking stability with the Porsche 911 GT3 was impressive as you can imagine, creating a great platform to be able to feed it into the corners with. Chassis WOW! The lateral grip of this car is insane, I could not believe the step up in performance Porsche has made with this chassis. It has more grip, it’s more forgiving and easier to push to the limit compared to the previous generation. The confidence and bond you build with this Porsche 911 GT3 is something really special, and although it may be slightly easier to drive than previous versions, it’s even more satisfying due to the feedback it gives you. It still has that subtle squat as you feed the power, but as the rear starts to step away it somehow manages to hold its poise so much better than before. You know you have pushed too far, but it’s kind enough to acknowledge it without punishing you for it. As for the front end, the precision and feedback it offers is fantastic and in similar vein to the rear of the car – you really know where the limit is, but can live on it constantly. Transmission and Differentials The Porsche 911 GT3’s seven-speed PDK dual-clutch transmission is even better than I remember as well. You feel like you are sitting in a factory race car as you pluck gears with the engine screaming behind you. Not once did I have it reject what I was asking for and although you have to be mindful of what gear to be in, the engine is flexible enough to deal with some mistakes. If you haven’t got the message yet, this engine and transmission combination creates one hell of an experience. The way this car entered, rotated and exited corners was brilliant, and even though I know there was a differential and electronics working away behind the scenes, I didn’t notice them one bit. The traction and balance on corner exit were perfect; and every time I asked for more, it delivered. Corner entry has taken a step up as well, feeling more in control but as free as ever at the same time. Increasing chassis ability has almost pushed the importance of the differential to the side, yet it’s more capable and refined than ever. Suspension Having learnt a bit more about the Porsche 911 GT3 since I last drove one, I opted for Sport mode on the suspension settings rather than Track. In this setting, it still offers enough support but can deal with bumps and changing surfaces a bit better. Even so, it’s still reactive off bumps and curbs, and really enjoys the smoothest parts of the racetrack. As for grip, I really don’t know how Porsche has dialled in so much lateral grip and traction from this package. The step forward taken in this area is something that you wouldn’t think was possible. Steering Because the chassis is improved, it makes the steering feel even better than ever – precise and connected with excellent feedback, something that you just expect from Porsche. Wheels and Tyres As I mentioned earlier, the Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres took a bit to warm up; but once they did, it was on! Lateral grip and traction were excellent and although I know a slick tyre is going to be quite a bit quicker, for a road-legal tyre they do an amazing job. With the car being more forgiving than before, I was able to see how impressive the tyres were at the limit. Driver Aids (Electronics) I ran with everything in Track mode except the suspension, which was in Sport, which I had previously found to be the best setting on our test track. Because of the level of lateral grip and the driveability of the engine, I barely noticed the driver aids interfering, and it is nice to have the backup there if needed at those speeds. It has been designed to perform on the track and that includes all these systems, which actually help rather than hinder. Cockpit (Ergonomics) The seats are my only complaint; with a helmet on your head gets slightly pushed forward feels a little awkward. Having seen what BMW did with the M4 seats, I think there is room for improvement here. The steering wheel size, position and finish is perfect, but Porsche could add some additional controls, such as suspension settings to make it easier to adjust on the go. There is not too much to say about the rest of the interior. It does exactly what it needs to and keeps you focused on the track, with the gearshift lights subtly grabbing your attention when needed. Lap Time As you may have guessed, the Porsche 911 GT3 was quick – seriously quick! It’s the first car we have seen break the 54-second mark, achieving 53.82 seconds on my third lap, heading straight to the top of the CarExpert leaderboard. Some might ask: ‘how is this quicker than even the Porsche 911 GT2 RS?!’ – but let me tell you; trying to master a GT2 RS in four laps is not an easy task, and it’s not as suited to the tighter, trickier corners of Queensland Raceway. This new 911 GT3 is a more driveable car and in my mind more of a complete package. All the small improvements Porsche have made have enhanced this car beyond what I thought was capable. Now I might be just a little bit excited for the next GT3 RS… Atko’s 3: You must track this car if you have one, it deserves itSmooth is fast, you don’t need a lot of inputs to do a quick timeWarm up your tyres and brakes before pushing hard Click the images for the full gallery MORE: Everything Porsche 911 View the full article
  20. Porsche has a bigger back catalogue of legends than most brands. Now, it’s allowing owners of the latest 911 GT3 RS to pay homage to one of its most famous cars. The company has now confirmed an exclusive upgrade for US customers. Dubbed the Tribute to Carrera RS package, it adds a host of aesthetic and interior modifications and distinctive Python Green detailing. It also opens the door for extra exclusive accessories. Keen-eyed enthusiasts will know the Tribute package is a callback to the 1972 911 Carrera RS 2.7, previewed by a special livery cooked up for the GT3 RS’ US debut. Earlier this year, the Porsche 911 GT3 RS was unveiled as a sportier, more aggressive version of the 911 GT3. The Tribute package is a US exclusive which will only be available to customers with an existing 2023 911 GT3 RS allocation through a Porsche dealership for $US312,550 before on-road costs. Although the Tribute package is stateside only, the 2023 911 GT3 RS will arrive in Australia in the second quarter of 2023 starting at $A500,200. The most noticeable changes with the Tribute package are the exterior aesthetics. Python Green paint has been used for the stripes, GT3 RS side decal, wheel covers and mirror caps, while the brake callipers are glossy black and the American flag has been added to the RS logo on the wing end plates. For the interior, green stitching, light-up door sill guards decorated with “Tribute to Carrera RS”, embossed RS logos, and keys painted in white all set this tribute package apart from the regular GT3 RS. To justify the price tag, Porsche will also offer a range of additional accessories with the package. These include a Porsche Design watch featuring the signature Python Green, a custom car cover, licence plate frames, and two 1:43 scale model cars of the 1973 Carrera and the new edition. Porsche is also entering the NFT space, providing owners with digital badges for their attendance at Porsche events and racetracks, which can be accompanied by physical graphics on the vehicle. The mechanicals of the 2023 911 GT3 RS remain, meaning it’s takes the base laid down by the 911 GT3 and cranks the details to 11. Power still comes from a 4.0-litre naturally-aspirated flat-six engine, but it’s been boosted by 11kW to deliver 386kW thanks to new camshafts featuring modified cam profiles. That power is sent to the rear wheels through a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission featuring shorter gear ratios than in the GT3. The 100km/h sprint flies by in 3.2 seconds, and flat out you’ll be doing 296km/h on track. MORE: Everything Porsche 911 View the full article
  21. No this is not a satirical news piece, nor is it the tale of a kindergarten teacher and their class of spoilt children. This is the story of a group of nine mature-age “scientists” and their not-so-well thought out plan. Members of “Scientist Rebellion”, a collection of so-called academics dressed in white lab coats, super-glued themselves to the concrete floor of the Porsche pavilion in Autostadt and the Volkswagen luxury cars exhibit in Wolfsburg as a protest against carbon emissions. “Nine of us glued to the floor and some of us on hunger strike until our demands to decarbonise the German transport sector are met.” Arguably a noble cause, but its execution seemed more like a poorly thought out third grader’s tantrum. After just a few short hours, the eco-demonstrators took to Twitter to complain that the glue was irritating their hands, that they were hungry, and desperately needed the bathroom. “Staff refused our request to provide us with a bowl to urinate and defecate in a decent manner while we are glued, and have now turned off the heating” It wasn’t long before more complaints emerged on the group’s social media accounts; “We can’t order our food, we must use the one provided by Volkswagen.” That seems to be an odd complaint from a group said to be on a hunger strike. When the museum staff knocked off for the day protestors complained that they were left in darkness, and that security guards did their rounds with “bright torches”. “Lights off. Random unannounced checks by security guards with bright torches. Police just came in.” The Twitter feed of the protestors reads more like satire than that of a well thought out plan from “academics” in white lab coats. These are our demands to the Volkswagen CEO, adapted from our general demands. (1) support introduction of speed limits on German motorways; (2) condone bonds held by @VW from Global South; (3) declare infeasibility of 1.5 goal 6/ pic.twitter.com/LaPLFFiI4I — gianluca grimalda (@GGrimalda) October 20, 2022 After a night sleeping on the floor, one of the demonstrators, Gianluca Grimalda, who had vowed to remain until Volkswagen agreed to lobby for low-carbon transport, voluntarily left after 24 hours when his hand swelled up from an adverse reaction to the glue. He tweeted an image of his swollen hand saying that a doctor had been brought in to examine him. He said: “Doctors ascertained the possibility of life-threatening blood clots in my hand and recommended an immediate transfer to a hospital. My health is of course paramount. I accepted to leave this wonderful group and was taken to hospital.” Doctors ascertained the possibility of life-threatening blood clots in my hand and recommended an immediate transfer to a hospital. My health is of course paramount. I accepted to leave this wonderful group and was taken to hospital, continuing my hunger strike.8/ pic.twitter.com/FUEUj7wu1b — gianluca grimalda (@GGrimalda) October 21, 2022 Just over a day into the demonstration and with none of his demands met, Mr Grimalda was removed from the pavilion where activists say he was arrested and transported to hospital. In complete contrast to those complaining of not being fed, Mr Grimalda instead continued his hunger strike in hospital. Shortly after, another protestor tweeted: “Now, just a few minutes later they’re warning us that we need to leave immediately otherwise we’ll be arrested.” Images showed police inside the pavilion and the demonstrators being arrested outside, ending the protest on its second day. Incredible. You really can’t make this stuff up. View the full article
  22. Our spy photographers have been busy, snapping four Porsche Taycan prototypes in testing. One appears to be a new high-performance variant, while the other three appear to be facelifted sedan and wagon models. The former, spied by the Nurburgring, features an outsized rear wing, as well as a more aggressive front bumper that’s flared at the sides. The vehicle otherwise appears to be unchanged cosmetically. There’s a roll cage and racing seat fitted, but these are often used for testing purposes. It’s unclear whether Porsche is working on a more extreme version of the Taycan than the current Turbo S flagship, potentially wearing the GT badge. The Turbo S features a dual-motor all-wheel drive powertrain with 560kW of power and 1050Nm of torque, good for a claimed range of 405km and a 0-100km/h time of just 2.8 seconds. In addition to this mysterious prototype, Taycan sedan and Taycan Sport Turismo wagon prototypes were spotted wearing camouflage on their front and rear bumpers. These would appear to be prototypes of a mid-life update for Porsche’s EV, which could be revealed next year as a 2024 model. Porsche isn’t just waiting for a traditional mid-life update to roll out tweaks to its first EV. Earlier this year it announced a software update that improves thermal management and therefore allows the Taycan to be rapidly charged more frequently. The update brings all Taycan models up to model year 2023 specification. There’s also a range of powertrain updates that affect 2021 Taycan models, bringing to them improvements that were introduced for model year 2022. In Normal and Range drive modes, the front motor of all-wheel drive Taycan models is almost completely disconnected. Both axles are free of drive torque when coasting or at a standstill, and a new energy flow indicator is viewable on the centre touchscreen. The automatic energy recuperation setting is also retained even when the drive mode is adjusted. Wireless Android Auto and integrated Spotify, introduced earlier this year, will be available for older models as part of the update, while there’s an updated look for the touchscreen’s start screen, greater support for voice controls, and an ‘optimised’ map view for the head-up display. The parking sensors have improved range, and the semi-automatic parking assist system can now detect smaller spaces. The current Taycan range in Australia comprises rear-wheel drive base and all-wheel drive 4S, GTS, Turbo and Turbo S sedans, plus the high-riding Cross Turismo wagon in 4, 4S and Turbo variants. The lower-slung Sport Turismo wagon isn’t offered here. MORE: Everything Porsche Taycan View the full article
  23. Porsche has spilled the T on its latest 911 variant. The Porsche 911 Carrera T, short for ‘touring’, has been designed as a more lightweight, focused model in the Carrera family. It’s available to order now ahead of deliveries in mid-2023, and is priced from $280,600 before on-road costs. That slots it between the PDK-only Carrera ($259,100 before on-roads) and Carrera S ($298,100 list). It also makes it the most affordable 911 with a manual, undercutting the more powerful Carrera GTS manual by over $50,000. The rear seats can be deleted, while the amount of insulation has been reduced and a lighter battery and glass shave off more weight. Total unladen weight is 1470kg, making it 35kg lighter than a standard Carrera. While a seven-speed manual transmission is standard, an eight-speed PDK a no-cost option. At the rear is the standard Carrera’s twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre flat-six engine producing 283kW of power and 450Nm of torque, with a 0-100km/h time of 4.5 seconds – 0.3 seconds slower than the standard, PDK-only Carrera. The PASM sports suspension and Sport Chrono package are standard, instead of being optional as on the S. A sports exhaust is also standard. The Carrera T can also be specified with rear-axle steering, as seen on the Carrera S and above. It features 20- and 21-inch Titanium Grey Carra S wheels in 245/35 (front) and 305/30 (rear) tyres, and these tie in with dark grey accents such as the mirrors, logos, and trim strips on the rear grille. The exhaust outlets are finished in high-gloss black. Inside, the T comes standard with the GT sports steering wheel and Porsche’s four-way power ‘Sports seats Plus’, with matte black and high-gloss black accents. An optional Carrera T interior package adds seat belts and stitching in contrasting Slate Grey or Lizard Green, while an extended leather interior option is also available that swathes the door panels, centre console and upper dashboard in leather trim. Also available are 18-way power Adaptive Sports seats Plus, as well as lightweight full bucket seats with Race Tax centres. Standard equipment on all Australian-market Carrera T models include: Matrix LED headlights with Porsche Dynamic Light System PlusAuto-dimming mirrors with rain sensorPower-folding exterior mirrorsFront and rear parking sensorsBlind-spot monitoringSurround-view cameraHeated steering wheelHeated seatsComfort Access keyless entryBOSE surround sound systemDigital radio Porsche’s Power steering Plus and adaptive cruise control are no-cost options. While Porsche will give buyers the option to use its Paint to Sample program, there’s a wide range of “off-the-rack” colours. Solid finishes consist of Black, White, Guards Red and Racing Yellow, while Jet Black, Gentian Blue, Ice Grey and GT Silver metallic finishes are also available. Optional ‘special’ colours consist of Crayon, Ruby Star Neo, Carmine Red, Shark Blue and Python Green. MORE: Everything Porsche 911 View the full article
  24. Upping the ante is what Lamborghini has always done best. It’s the very essence of the Raging Bull brand and the Urus Performante is just the latest incarnation of that spectacularly executed trademark formula. When Lamborghini launched the Urus in 2018, no one had ever seen anything like it. Here was a genuine super sports SUV that didn’t just confuse the laws of physics as we know them, it practically re-wrote them, and in doing so kicked off an entirely new segment in the process. It wasn’t just the Urus’s ballistic straight-line performance that mesmerised anyone who got behind the wheel (complete with bright-red weapons-hot lever), though it could surely stay with plenty of outright supercars in a straight-up drag race thanks to its four-paw driveline. On track, it was just as lethal, never mind the Lambo’s monster-size dimensions, high-riding profile and sheer unadulterated heft. All of that didn’t seem to matter though, because it simply obliterated any-and-all dynamic barriers it was confronted with, thanks to a raft of innovative technical solutions designed to make the Urus handle like one of its genuine Lamborghini super-sports car siblings. While the Urus was first and foremost an SUV boasting all the usual functionality expected of a family hauler of such mass, it was also one that gave the driver a genuine Lamborghini driving experience – especially in the handling, feedback and sound departments. That is to say, it felt special in the same way a Huracan or an Aventador did every time you jumped into the pilot’s seat – no easy feat for a haughty family chariot stretching more than 5.1 metres in length and tipping the scales at more than 2200 kilograms. But somehow Lamborghini pulled it off and created something quite extraordinary and completely without rival. All of this of course begs the question as to why the need to go full-tilt crazy and build an even more potent version of the lofty Lambo, armed with enough specialised firepower to pretty much own the skies, if we’re going with Lamborghini’s favoured aeronautical cabin theme. And, just when you thought the limits had been reached, Lambo has added a ‘Rally’ mode, so you can do donuts outside the Hotel de Paris, in Monte Carlo. Perhaps it was pressure from within the Volkswagen Group ranks – specifically, the hyper-quick (and significantly cheaper) Porsche Cayenne Turbo GT, or Aston Martin’s universally lauded DBX707 – a seriously good all-rounder we tried out earlier this year, in Italy of all places. Closer still, is the newly revealed Urus S – a more accomplished ‘entry-level’ version boasting identical powertrain outputs as the Performante (490kW and 850Nm), but still a couple of tenths down in the 0-100 sprint. Either way, there was never any doubt Lamborghini would once again, ‘up the ante’, and develop a more focused version of its already outrageous SUV – one that would effectively put any challengers firmly back in their box, regardless of how fast they are in a straight line. You see, with the Performante, it’s not all about a few extra kilowatts, or knocking off a few tenths in a standing-start romp. In fact, I’d argue the Performante’s newfound blast-off speed simply puts it line ball with the Aston and Porsche, and by that fact alone, the least significant measure in its freshly honed, track-focused arsenal. Far more notable was Lamborghini’s decision to scrap the Urus’s sophisticated air suspension system, which allows for variable ride heights and off-road modes, in favour of old-school steel springs and a lower ride height (by 20mm). According to Victor Underberg, head of vehicle development at Lamborghini, there was never any doubt about dropping the air suspension given the benefits to the Performante’s handling and feedback far outweighed any loss of ride compliance on the road. Moreover, the lower stance also meant a lower centre of gravity was also achieved. Still, it’s a bold move and one that’s bound to affect overall ride comfort as Underberg indicated. But like so many other high-priced, special edition variants these days, somehow ‘less becomes more’ in these calculated equations. There’s another big plus from using traditional springs and dampers in place of adjustable air springs – the Urus Performante is claimed to be considerably stiffer at both ends, making it more responsive and sharper overall, at least for those with enough free cash on hand to put one of these high-riders in the family shed. It’s serious bucks, too. Try an eye-watering $465,876 before on-road costs, and that doesn’t include the long list of must-have options which could easily see its drive-away price blow out to more than half-a-million dollars. Nevertheless, Lamborghini is betting on no shortage of willing customers with this kind of loose change lying around, given the overwhelming success of the Urus so far. It’s easily the biggest-selling model in marque’s history, with more than 21,000 units sold in less than four years. But, it’s not just about the sales data either, the Urus continues to be a game changer by attracting up to 85 per cent of new buyers to the brand and one that’s currently responsible for more than half its global sales, which in 2021 numbered a record-breaking 8405 units. While it’s not a limited-edition, Urus Performante is a more finely-honed version. It’s a sharper instrument in every way – more planted and even more confidence inspiring thanks to a raft of ground-hugging and corner-carving measures like the wider track (by 16mm), and newly-developed Pirelli Trofeo R tyres for those who want to completely decimate the field on those premium track days. There’s broader carbon-fibre wheel arches too – essential for housing the optional 23-inch wheels, or better-suited 22-inch lightweight versions that also boast featherweight titanium bolts. The engineers have also cleaned up the front bumper too, with a new air curtain which you can genuinely feel the benefits of when you’re full tilt into the turn one kink here at Autodromo Vallelunga. In fact, weight saving plays key role in this mental-as-anything Urus, where every kilo still counts, even for this lower, longer and wider leviathan, which manages to shed a not-insignificant 47kg, thanks in part to a suite of carbon-fibre composite panels – apparently more than any other production series SUV we’re told. That’ll be the forged bonnet including air flutes, front and rear bumpers, splitters and spoilers; all of which are fashioned from the ultra-lightweight material and come standard with the Performante. There’s a carbon-fibre roof available, too, but you’ll need to pay more for that. Oh, and that new rear wing also gets aircraft-style fins in the lightweight stuff, which as a whole, is said to increase rear downforce by as much as 38 per cent. There’s more weight saving underneath with a titanium exhaust system supplied by the ubiquitous performance exhaust company, Akrapovic. That alone saves more than 10 kilos compared with the stainless steel version on the standard Urus. Inside, it’s a bit more special than the norm, with swathes of Nero Cosmos (don’t you just love the Italian descriptions) Alcantara from floor to ceiling – primarily to cut down glare you might otherwise get off leather upholstery – at least on the dashboard. There’s also unique trim on the doors, headliner and seatbacks, though there are a zillion ways owners can customise their Urus Performante through Lamborghini’s Ad Personam program. For instance, a couple of our testers had tasty red anodised aluminium door handles (you can get black too) that match the big red ‘Tamburo’ start/stop lever and the centre-strip on the steering wheel. So, is this the new super sports SUV benchmark? How much does the Lamborghini Urus Performante cost? The range-topping Lamborghini Urus Performante is expected to go on sale locally in the second quarter of 2023 with an asking price of $465,876 plus on-road costs. That’s a fair hike above the latest entry-level Urus S priced from $409,744 and arriving shortly – itself a slight bump from the $395,888 price of its predecessor. I’d likely argue there are no genuine like-for-like rivals to match the on-track capability of the Urus Performante (we haven’t yet driven it on-road), but they’re a couple of blindingly quick high riders, including the Aston Martin DBX707 ($428,400) and Porsche Cayenne Turbo GT ($351,900) – the latter effectively a first cousin built off the same platform as the Lambo. What is the Lamborghini Urus Performante like on the inside? It’s a good thing the Urus Performante comes standard with swathes of Nero Cosmos black Alcantara, because leather would simply be out of place in this oh-so-special Lamborghini SUV. And it’s like no other Alcantara I’ve ever seen or sat on. It’s doubly thick and super-soft at the same time, with superbly cushioned sports buckets. The bolsters are tall and look aggressive, but they still offer easy ingress and egress, even when wearing a race helmet. On the one hand the cockpit looks and feels like the dedicated track demon it is, but on the other it looks and feels more luxurious than you might expect of this hardcore Lambo. The steering wheel is something of an art piece – flat-bottomed and a combination of black Alcantara on the side rims and leather top and bottom. It’s the perfect size – compact but not too so, with a red centre marker that matches what I like to call the red ‘fire control’ lever of the Urus’ central ‘Tamburo’ which houses the start/stop button and drive mode selector. The overall look and feel is more technical than straight-up luxury, enhanced by lots of matte carbon-fibre trim. The ‘Tamburo’ itself uses two levers, one for the drive modes and the other for all-wheel drive system and various chassis settings. There’s a dedicated Manual button too flanked by a Park button and it’s all nicely intuitive. As a track test only this time round, there wasn’t time to explore all three screens in the Urus Performante other than to enjoy the super-size digital driver’s display in the full-tilt Corsa (track) mode, with its colourful rev counter front and centre including even larger gear indicator – crucial if you’re shifting with the uniquely designed lightweight paddles. The driving position is simply superb and given the car is sitting 20mm lower compared with the regular Urus, it feels even better given you’re sitting that much closer to the ground. From the very moment you belt up and pull the right-hand paddle to engage first there’s an innate sense of confidence with the Performante. Everything just feels right. While this was purely a track test, we didn’t get to spend any time in the rear seats (our tester was in a four-seat configuration rather than five), which effectively gives you bolstered rear seats and plenty of rear legroom. Boot space is also decent at 616 litres behind the second row, and those seats fold pretty much flat for easy rear loading of luggage and/or sports equipment. What’s under the bonnet? The Urus Performante gets a slight boost in power (12kW) to its 4.0-litre twin-turbocharged V8, to 490kW at 6000rpm, though the 850Nm of torque between 2300-4500rpm remains unchanged. Interestingly, the power and torque outputs are now line-ball with the new entry-level Urus S, which has also had its fair share of tweaks and enhancements. The power hike isn’t much, but combined with the Performante’s 47kg weight loss and best-in-class power-to-weight ratio, the big Lambo can scoot from 0-100km/h in 3.3 seconds (3.5s for the Urus S), with a top speed of 306km/h (up from 305km/h for the regular Urus). This puts the Performante in-line with the DBX707 and Cayenne Turbo GT, at least in terms of sprint times. More importantly, the Performante gets a few tweaks of its own, namely, a sharper throttle response and a more intense sound from its lightweight titanium exhaust, courtesy of performance pipe manufacturer, Akrapovic. The Performante sticks with the eight-speed ZF automatic gearbox, but shift speed has been enhanced to make up for the absence of a quick-shifting dual-clutch transmission. In addition, the ratio of the Torsen centre differential has been optimised down from 3.16 to 3.4 – commensurate with the Performante’s sharper responses. The Urus Performante gets an 85-litre fuel tank, although fuel-consumption data has not yet been provided. How does the Lamborghini Urus Performante drive? I vividly recall my first time in a Lamborghini Urus. At full tilt it was utter madness. To think someone had a built a high-riding SUV as capable in the corners (or on track) as any full-blown supercar, simply blew my mind. Frankly, I doubt any other brand besides Lamborghini could have pulled it off – and that was in 2018. It’s not that the Urus Performante is demonstrably better than the original in one area, but holistically, I doubt there will ever be a more capable high-end SUV powered by an internal combustion engine. I’ve never been much of a fan of aftermarket exhaust systems but from the moment you lift the red ‘Tamburo’ lever and hit the start button you’re going to relish the ear-splitting signature these pipes make. It sets the tune of what’s in store on a track like Autodromo Vallelunga, which until now, I’d never gelled with. But that was in a Hyundai i30 N following a mis-matched set of drivers, and this is a Lamborghini Urus Performante following Italian racing driving Filippo Zadotti at full noise – there’s a big difference. Filippo tells me we have three stints of four laps – the last lap of each a cool down. Music to my ears, given we could have flown half way around the world for four laps in total on a track I hadn’t seen in six years. I kick off in Sport just for the first lap to get familiar with the track again, but hit the manual button, as it just feels wrong not to be manually shifting this track-honed Urus. Immediately, you can feel the sharper throttle response and quicker steering (all-wheel steering) as we rifle down through a fast right/left section before dropping down to third for a banked right hander before getting back on the power. It’s intoxicating how this 2150kg monster truck relishes being pushed hard in the bends. The moment you’re through it, you’re thinking “you can take that corner so much quicker”, and you do exactly that the next time around. I can’t get over how well it balances it’s sheer heft and of course its 5.2m length. You just keep pushing harder with each lap you do, but you’re never quite satisfied. Still, the Performante seems to be relishing every input and then some. In all three stints most of them in Corsa (track) mode, I don’t recall a single millimetre of body roll or momentary lack of grip from the monster-size 325/30 section Pirelli Trofeo R semi-slicks down back. Understeer moments are rare, too, perhaps once on the left-hand hairpin – and only for a split second. Remarkable stuff and testament to the Performante’s active roll-stabilisation system that keeps the car in check no matter how high the loads. The brakes are mental. Carbon-ceramic 440mm front rotors – meaning you can late brake into every corner without any consequences and then back on the power ever so quickly. Fade after 12 laps of relentless pushing – what fade? Never mind the paddles either, the ZF eight-speed is more than up to the task. Several times I was too focused on my line and forgot to pull a gear and the auto took over to the point of set and forget. It’s very clever. The Performante’s party trick is its new ‘Rally’ mode. It relaxes the safety settings and loosens the slip angles for some genuine fun on a makeshift rally section with Fillipo yelping like a wounded animal as we throw the Urus from left to right and back again. How many owners will want to do that in their half-million-dollar SUV? Not many I suspect, but it’s a blast, nevertheless. What do you get? Like all super sports machines in this stratospheric price range regardless of the badge, it’s often difficult to know what’s actually standard fitment against an endless list of options – both inside and out. Even with the highly specialised Urus Performante which gets more kit than the regular version in terms of go-fast hardware (and software), the lines between stock appointments, optional extras, and various levels of customisation via Lamborghini’s Ad Personam program are blurred at best. Harder still, is the fact customer cars won’t arrive here until mid-2023 and almost all are guaranteed to be personalised in some fashion. It’s just what you do at this rarefied level of luxury car ownership. Nevertheless, standard kit includes: Carbon-fibre exterior elementsBonnetFront, rear bumpersSplitterWheel arch extensionsRear diffuserAkrapovic titanium exhaust system22-inch forged alloy wheels with titanium bolts Pirelli P Zero Corsa 285/40 front, 325/35 rear‘Tamburo’ drive mode selector incl. Rally mode (NEW)Steel springs, 20mm lower ride heightBlack pack Door handles,Front and rear aero elements Lower side sillsCarbon-ceramic brake rotors 440mm front with 10-piston calipers370mm rear with single floating caliperFlat-bottom leather steering wheel Black leather/Alcantara trimRed anodised aluminium centre markerDigital driver’s instrument display with Performante HMI graphicsDual touchscreens for infotainment, HVAC controlsMatte carbon-fibre trimNero Cosmos black Alcantara upholstery incl. Performante hexagonal seat stitchingRed door handlesCustomised kick plate with Ad Personam logo Options include: Night VisionWiper blades with integrated nozzlesSoft-close doorsDAB radioPremium air quality systemHeated rear seatsSunblinds packageSmoker packageGarage door openerCargo management system with three-way dividers23-inch Pirelli P Zero tyres22-inch Pirelli Trofeo sport tyres22-inch winter tyres21-inch spare wheelParking cushions Protects from tyre deformation through long-term parkingLoad assist trayEmergency kitAll-weather mats kitInfotainment screen protectorDoor lights Lamborghini LogoValve caps with logoBattery maintainerEngine bay in carbon-fibrePet protection coverPet rampCargo stopperCargo linerSport side steps in carbon-fibreSport side steps in high-gloss blackSki bagLamborghini protective filmWarranty extension package for 4-5 yearsMaintenance packages for three and five years Is the Lamborghini Urus Performante safe? The Lamborghini Urus has not been tested by ANCAP or Euro NCAP. As the car is based on the Volkswagen Group MLB Evo platform, it’s likely the five-star ANCAP result of the Audi Q8 is indicative of how the Urus would perform in a crash. Standard safety equipment includes: AEB with Pedestrian detectionBlind-spot monitoringLane-keep assistAdaptive cruise control8 airbags How much does the Lamborghini Urus Performante cost to run? The Urus is backed by the same three-year, unlimited-kilometre warranty as the wider Lamborghini range, although fourth and fifth-year warranty extensions can be purchased. Lamborghini doesn’t provide servicing costs for its cars, just in case you need to ask. From experience, we can tell you to budget somewhere between $2500 and 4000 per service for the first few years, though buyers can purchase three and five-year service packages. CarExpert’s Take on the Lamborghini Urus Performante I can tell you first-hand the Aston Martin DBX707 is an astonishingly capable luxury SUV on the road, as is the Porsche Cayenne Turbo GT. But they’re not in the same league, dynamically. At least, not on a race track. The Urus Performante can do things on a circuit that no SUV weighing 2150kg should be capable of, and certainly not at the pace we were moving at. While we’re yet to experience the Performante (and its steel springs suspension setup) on the road, we suspect its whole vehicle makeover and newfound sharpness and roadholding will be nothing less than spectacular and equally addictive for anyone this well heeled. Click the images for the full gallery MORE: Everything Lamborghini Urus View the full article
  25. The new Porsche 911 GT3 RS has shaved 10.6 seconds off the Nurburgring time set by the GT3. The naturally-aspirated track weapon completed the 20.8km Nordschleife in 6:49.328 minutes, with former racing driver and current Porsche ambassador Jörg Bergmeister behind the wheel. On the shorter circuit, which excludes the T13 straight, it posted a time of 6:44.848 minutes. The latter is over two seconds quicker than the time set by Porsche in the twin-turbocharged 991.2 GT2 RS, and only around 1.2 seconds off the current production car record holder, the Mercedes-AMG GT Black Series. MORE: The fastest cars around the Nurburgring Technically a Porsche 911 has posted the quickest Nordschleife time at 6:38.835, though this was a 911 GT2 RS modified by Manthey Racing. “Today the 911 GT3 RS delivered what it had already promised at first glance – absolute excellence on the racetrack,” says Andreas Preuninger, Porsche’s director of GT cars. “Considering the far from ideal conditions, with a strong headwind on the long straight of the Döttinger Höhe and cool asphalt temperatures, we are satisfied with this time. “The 911 GT3 RS is setting new standards for aerodynamics and the chassis. Never before has a road car embodied so much motorsport.” Bergmeister noted he lost a little downforce due to strong winds, but was happy with the car’s performance – particularly its braking. The GT3 RS arrives in Australia in the second quarter of 2023 with a starting price of $500,200 before on-road costs. It takes the base laid down by the 911 GT3 and cranks the details to 11. Power still comes from a 4.0-litre naturally-aspirated flat-six engine, but it’s been boosted by 11kW to deliver 386kW thanks to new camshafts featuring modified cam profiles. That power is sent to the rear wheels through a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission featuring shorter gear ratios than in the GT3. The 0-100km/h sprint flies by in 3.2 seconds, and flat out you’ll be doing 296km/h on track. Rather than a conventional three-radiator cooling system, Porsche has fitted a larger single radiator where the boot is on other 911 models. The approach borrows from the new 911 R racer, and allows Porsche the space to create a more aggressive active aerodynamics package than we’ve seen elsewhere in the 992-generation 911 range. The nose is home to continuously-adjustable wing elements, and the rear wing is movable. Porsche says the 409kg of downforce on offer at 200km/h is double what the last GT3 RS could manage, and is three times what the GT3 offers. Prod a button on the steering wheel and a flap on the rear wing opens, essentially giving the driver an F1-style Drag Reduction System; perfect for when you’re stuck behind a Mercedes-Benz on the autobahn. The rear wing also acts as an airbrake under heavy braking. The side blades on the front wheel arches are inspired by those on the Le Mans-winning 911 GT1, while air from the central front radiator flows over the roof where it’s sent outwards by two fins. They’re meant to make sure hot air isn’t being fed to the engine which, naturally, is mounted at the rear. Carbon fibre reinforced plastic has been used for the doors, front wings, roof and front bonnet lid to help keep kerb weight at 1450kg – roughly on par with the PDK GT3, despite the uprated hardware fitted to make the GT3 RS even more capable on track. Speaking of uprated hardware, the front track on the RS is 29mm wider than that of the GT3. The suspension has been modified to stop the car pitching forward under hard braking, and both the electric driver assists and rear-steer are more aggressive than on the GT3. The front brakes are 408mm units, and the rears are 380mm units. The pistons on the front brakes have a larger diameter than on the GT3, and the brake discs themselves are thicker. Carbon ceramics with 410mm front and 390mm rear discs are optional. In Track mode, drivers are able to customise the nitty-gritty details of how the car behaves. The rebound and compression damping of the front and rear dampers can be individually tweaked, for example, and the differential’s operation can be modified on the fly using four dials on the steering wheel. The cabin is home to a set of carbon-backed bucket seats, and a steering wheel trimmed in grippy Alcantara. A steel roll bar, a fire extinguisher, and six-point belts are part of a no-cost Club Sport Package. The Weissach Package is back for 2023, and brings CFRP front and rear anti-roll bars, rear coupling rods, and a CFRP shear panel on the rear axle. The roll cage is made of CFRP to shave 6kg relative to the steel unit, and magnesium wheels are available as an option. Opting for the Weissach Package also gets you shift paddles with what Porsche calls “motorsport-derived magnet technology” for a more satisfying click. MORE: 2023 Porsche 911 GT3 RS review MORE: Everything Porsche 911 View the full article
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