McLaren will launch its second model in the new Sports Series, the McLaren 540C Coupé, at the Shanghai Motor Show, 20-29 April 2015. The most attainable McLaren yet, the 540C Coupé joins the recently revealed 570S Coupé in the Sports Series as the brand brings its race derived DNA to a new audience and segment. These introductions bring the number of new McLarens launched in 2015 to four as the brand continues its rapid growth. Globally available and priced from £126,000, the 540C Coupé can be pre-ordered now with deliveries scheduled to being in early 2016.
The 540C Coupé is a pure McLaren, and a pure sports car, sharing its DNA with the models in the Super Series and Ultimate Series, including a light weight carbon fibre chassis and race-derived technologies. It is fitted with a mid-mounted 3.8-litre twin turbocharged V8 engine which has been developed to be responsive and thrilling, even at low engine speeds. As its name suggests, the Sports Series dedicated application of the award-winning McLaren power unit generates 540PS at 7,500 rpm and 540Nm of torque at 3,500-6,500 rpm. With stop-start technology, it offers optimised levels of efficiency and a longer range suited to the typical usage of cars in this segment.
At the heart of the 540C, as with the 570S, is the unique carbon fibre MonoCell II chassis which has been newly designed with a greater focus on day-to-day usability, offering improved ingress to and egress from the cabin, along with class-leading occupant protection and safety. A dry weight of as low as 1,311 kg (2,890lbs) is achieved as a result of this lightweight structure and the use of aluminium body panels. This figure sees the 540C almost 150kg lighter than its closest competitor.
Power is delivered through the rear wheels via a seven-speed seamless shift gearbox (SSG) which, aided by the low weight of the 540C, sees the 0 to 100km/h (62mph) sprint completed in 3.5 seconds, 0 to 200km/h (124mph) in just 10.5 seconds, and on to a top speed of 320km/h (199mph). Given this level of performance, 25.5 mpg on the EU combined cycle and emissions of just 258 g/km are an impressive achievement.
A subtly revised aerodynamic package and a dedicated wheel design mark out the 540C Coupé against the more powerful 570S Coupé. Unique aero blades below the front bumper channel cold, clean air through the lower bodywork and up over the sculpted bonnet, flanked by large LED headlamps. At the rear, the diffuser sits between the twin exhausts which exit below the rear bumper. The aerodynamically-led styling of the Sports Series Coupé includes intricately designed dihedral doors which include the elegant floating door tendon. This design feature channels air along the length of the door into the two integrated air intakes mounted in the rear quarter panel. This creates a clean path for the air to flow along the bodywork with minimal drag, directing air to the flying buttresses at the rear of the cabin which optimise air flow over the rear deck to increase downforce levels and aid engine cooling. An integrated spoiler at the trailing edge of the rear deck provides optimal downforce.
The 540C Coupé is fitted with distinctive new cast alloy wheels, available with silver or stealth finish, 19-inch at the front and 20-inch at the rear. These are fitted with Pirelli P Zero™ tyres as standard, which have been developed specifically for the Sports Series to offer high levels of performance in all conditions, with progressive levels of grip and a focus on comfort. The 540C retains the Formula 1™-derived Brake Steer system, designed to aid cornering through the application of braking force to the inside rear wheel. This enables later braking into corners, and earlier application of power on exit.
The 540C features a newly-developed suspension system ensuring enhanced levels of driver engagement and refinement on both road and track. The system uses front and rear anti-rollbars Formula 1™- style dual wishbones and independent adaptive dampers. The damper tuning has been revised on 540C, over 570S, with more focus on day-to-day road driving. Adaptive dampers offer control over bump and rebound settings using the familiar McLaren ‘Normal’, ‘Sport’ and ‘Track’ handling settings, with the Sports Series having its own unique damper settings. In ‘Normal’ mode, the system provides a refined yet engaging ride, while the ‘Sport’ and ‘Track’ settings allow a greater level of focus and engagement when required. Twin damper valves ensure precise control, while dual wishbone suspension provides optimised levels of ride quality and driver feedback.
The interior of the Sports Series has been created with a focus on space and ergonomics, offering great outward visibility and interior space for occupants and their belongings. Organic curves carried inside from the exterior design bring delicate tension without aggression to ensure the cabin remains a welcoming environment.
Inside the cabin, the 540C Coupé is luxuriously appointed with leather upholstery to the seats, dashboard and lower doors as standard. The ‘floating’ centre console features a seven-inch IRIS touchscreen which controls all elements of the infotainment system. The air conditioning controls are also incorporated, as first seen on the McLaren P1™, minimising switchgear in the cabin. The touchscreen also controls the standard DAB digital radio, as well as satellite navigation, Bluetooth telephony and media streaming, voice activation and the audio media player. The IRIS system also includes the electronic owner’s manual.
The McLaren 540C Coupé is the second model to join the Sports Series, and sits alongside the 570S Coupé. Both models are available to order from the dedicated global McLaren retail network, operating in every major automotive market, in more than 30 countries. Pricing for the 540C Coupé starts from £126,000.
McLAREN 540C TECHNICAL STATISTICS
|0-100 km/h (0-62 mph)||3.5 seconds|
|0-200 km/h (0-124 mph)||10.5 seconds|
|Top speed||320 km/h (199 mph)|
|Power-to-weight||412PS per tonne|
ENGINE & POWERTRAIN
|Engine configuration||V8 Twin Turbo / 3799cc|
|Power||540PS (533 bhp) @ 7,500 rpm|
|Torque||540Nm (398 lb ft) @ 3,500-6,500 rpm|
|Transmission||7 Speed SSG|
|Economy||25.5 mpg (EU combined)|
|Engine lubricant||Mobil 1 New Life™ 0W-40|
DIMENSIONS & WEIGHT
|Dry weight||1,311 kg (2,890lbs) with lightweight options|
|Weight distribution (f / r)||42 / 58|
AT THE SHOW: Bentley Commemorates Historic “Blue Train” Race with 85th Anniversary Mulliner Limited Edition
(Crewe, 15th April 2015) Bentley Motors is commemorating the historic ‘Blue Train’ race won by the Bentley Speed Six in 1930 with a Mulliner Limited Edition – the Mulsanne Speed ‘Blue Train’.
Debuting this week at the Techno-Classica show in Essen, Germany, just four examples will be hand-crafted in Crewe for customers in continental Europe.
85 years ago, Captain Woolf Barnato, Chairman of Bentley Motors and pioneering ‘Bentley Boy’, was staying in Cannes at the Carlton Hotel. He accepted a wager that not only could he beat the Calais-Mediterranée Express or ‘Blue Train’ back to Calais, but that he could be at his club in London before the train even reached the English Channel. He was, and the remarkable victory has been talked about ever since.
The ‘Blue Train’ Limited Edition is produced by the skilled craftsmen and women of Bentley’s bespoke coachbuilding division, Mulliner. Each features a number of delightful historical references and modern interpretations of design details from the original Speed Six.
For example, the fluting pattern in the door panels and the rear quarter inserts echo the interior of Barnato’s original car. The dashboard facia features an expertly crafted veneer image of the original Bentley ‘Blue Train’ Speed Six. Meanwhile, the treadplate plaques bear the wording ‘Blue Train 85 Years’ and the front grille features a square mesh design inspired by original Speed Six.
Richard Charlesworth, Head of the Bentley Heritage Collection, comments: “The Blue Train is one of the most famous and celebrated cars in the world, and it perfectly embodies the racing spirit of the Bentley. Woolf Barnato was a three-time Le Mans victor, but winning the Blue Train race captured the public’s imagination, and fuelled the legend of the Bentley Boys. By beating the Calais-Mediterranée Express he forever guaranteed the Speed Six’s place in automotive history.”
The first ‘Blue Train’ Limited Edition delivered will also feature a personalised hamper, trimmed with Burnt Oak and Camel hide to perfectly match the interior of the car. Mulliner has crafted beautiful leather cutlery holders and a leather rug wrap-around, both featuring ‘Blue Train’ embroidery. The hamper contains exclusive Robbe & Berking silver plated cutlery, Haviland Limoges porcelain crockery, LINLEY crystal champagne flutes and a 100 percent Angora picnic rug, woven in Scotland.
Robert Engstler, Regional Director Europe, added: “The fact that we are producing just four of these Limited Editions is highly significant, as Barnato famously made it to the club in London four minutes before the train arrived in Calais. The unique design elements bring back nostalgic memories of one of the most legendary Bentleys of all times.”
The Mulsanne Speed Blue Train by Mulliner can be seen at the Techno-Classica Show in Essen (Hall 7). from the 15th to the 19th of April 2015.
Whitley, UK, 14th April, 2014: Jaguar Land Rover will launch its new Land Rover Heritage division at the Techno Classica show in Essen, Germany between 15-19 April, 2015.
Complementing the recently established Jaguar Heritage division, Land Rover Heritage will offer original Land Rover vehicle parts for a variety of heritage models that have been out of production for longer than a decade.
Body, trim and extended servicing items are available for Range Rover Classic, while for Range Rover P38 and Discovery 1 and 2, Land Rover Heritage supplies salvage and extended service parts to ensure customers’ cherished cars are maintained to the highest possible standard.
For Series l, ll and lll, selected Land Rover Heritage Parts are available and the brand will gradually reintroduce more original part numbers – all made using original tooling methods and all items supported under warranty*.
Land Rover Heritage forms part of Jaguar Land Rover’s Special Operations division and has been created to support the brand’s passion in nurturing and preserving its rich heritage of vehicles and supporting its loyal customer base across Land Rover’s global sales network.
With production of current Defender now in its final phase, Land Rover has committed to supply replacement parts for 15 years for this automotive icon. Thereafter, owners of the current Defender will be able to maintain their treasured car by ordering genuine Land Rover Heritage Parts through Land Rover’s global network of retailers.
John Edwards, Managing Director of Jaguar Land Rover Special Operations, said: “We are delighted to launch Land Rover Heritage, which perfectly complements the recent introduction of Jaguar Heritage. It is estimated that 70% of all Land Rovers manufactured since 1948 are still in existence so there is a large and very passionate owner base to support through Land Rover Heritage.”
The centrepiece for Land Rover at Techno Classica will be an iconic first-generation Range Rover Classic, featuring a selected range of Land Rover Heritage Parts created using original Land Rover tooling.
The steady rollout of the Land Rover Heritage business will also expand to include Land Rover Heritage Drives – launching this summer. This will give participants the unique opportunity to drive models from Land Rover’s heritage collection at a special 200-acre testing facility in Warwickshire.
*Warranty terms may vary. Please consult the nearest Land Rover retailer in your market for specific Terms & Conditions.
Atlanta. Porsche is highlighting the 2015 convertible season by celebrating the world premiere of the new Boxster Spyder. This pure sports car will make its debut at the New York International Auto Show. The new top model of the Boxster range retains the unique and unmistakable character of the previous Spyder, which has already attained cult status. For example, the classic roadster top is still opened and closed by hand, and the Boxster Spyder is only available with a manual transmission, benefiting both weight savings and driver enjoyment.
Staying true to roadster DNA, the Boxster Spyder offers a traditional sports-car driving experience combined with truly exceptional performance. This includes a firm sport suspension with a 20-mm lower ride height, brakes taken from the 911 Carrera S, more direct steering, and a 3.8-liter horizontally opposed six-cylinder engine with an output of 375 hp, culminating in a genuine sports car experience with outstanding driving dynamics. It is the lightest model of the current Boxster line, and the most powerful Boxster to date. Taking only 4.3 seconds to sprint from 0 to 60 mph, the Boxster Spyder has a top track speed of 180 mph.
The distinctive design of the Boxster Spyder includes stylistic elements reminiscent of legendary sports and race cars from Porsche. Two prominent streamliners that extend down along the sweeping rear lid behind the headrests pay tribute to the 718 Spyder from the 1960s. The manually operated, lightweight top is suitable for everyday use with an electric clasp, while bringing to mind roadsters from the past. The fins that stretch back from the top to the rear lend the vehicle’s silhouette its characteristic design. The front and rear fascia’s also are unique to the Boxster Spyder, and an air outlet is located in front of the forward luggage compartment.
More so than in any other Boxster, the interior of the new Spyder creates an atmosphere that elicits a feeling of pure driving pleasure. The driver and passenger sit in standard Sport Seats Plus, while the new steering wheel with a diameter of 360 mm (compared to 370 mm in other Boxster models) helps ensure the mid-engine roadster can be driven precisely and with great agility.
In line with the model’s traditional roadster character, neither a radio nor an air conditioner is included as standard equipment in order to reduce weight. However, both can be ordered as optional equipment at no cost. Furthermore, the entire range of Boxster audio systems is available for customers to choose from as an option, including the Porsche Communication Management (PCM) system with navigation.
The new Boxster Spyder will be launched in the U.S. market in October and can now be ordered at dealerships. In the United States, the MSRP is $82,100, not including a $995 destination charge.
McLaren has completed its three tier model strategy with the global reveal of the first in its Sports Series family: the McLaren 570S Coupé. This pure sports car, with driver optimised layout and electrifying performance, shares its DNA with the McLaren Super Series and Ultimate Series that sit above it in the range hierarchy. The Sports Series introduces McLaren race-derived technologies and design values to a new segment and audience.
Like every McLaren, the performance of the 570S Coupé is breathtaking. It combines, as its names suggests, a power output of 570PS (562bhp) with light weight construction to give a class leading power-to-weight ratio of 434PS per tonne. The 570S accelerates from 0 to 100km/h (62 mph) in 3.2 seconds, while 200 km/h (124 mph) is reached in just 9.5 seconds with the pace not letting up till the car reaches a top speed of 328 km/h (204mph).
The Coupé is the first bodystyle to be shown in the Sports Series, highlighting the latest evolution of the McLaren design philosophy. The ‘shrinkwrapped’, aerodynamically-optimised form will be seen in public for the first time at the 115th New York International Auto Show. The McLaren design team has created a shape of beauty highlighted by details such as the rear flying buttresses that increase downforce as well as adding grace, and complex door tendons that direct additional air to cool the mid-mounted V8 engine.
The Sports Series features an evolution of the 3.8-litre V8 twin turbo engine, named M838TE, with 30 percent of components bespoke to the new model. Engineered by McLaren, it produces 570PS (562 bhp) at 7,400 rpm, and 600Nm (443 lb ft) of torque at 5,000-6,500 rpm. Power is delivered through a seven-speed SSG transmission, and transferred to the road through the rear wheels. This power is brought under control with standard-fit carbon ceramic brakes, fitted behind a newly designed range of forged alloy wheel options with P Zero™ Corsa tyres as standard from McLaren technical partner, Pirelli – 225/35/R19 on the front and 285/35/R20 on the rear.
The unique carbon fibre MonoCell II chassis has been newly designed with more of a focus on day-to-day usability, offering improved ingress and egress from the cabin. It is incredibly strong and stiff yet weighs less than 80kg, offering optimum levels of protection. This lightweight structure, and the use of aluminium body panels, contributes to a dry weight of as low as 1,313kg (2,895lbs), almost 150kg lighter than its closest competitor.
Minimised weight and a turbocharged engine doesn’t just bring great performance. The 570S also delivers excellent fuel efficiency and emissions for car that is also a member of the 200mph club, with fuel economy of 25.5mpg on the EU combined cycle, and emissions of 258g/km. For the US market, this means exemption from gas guzzler tax.
A PURE McLAREN BOTH ON ROAD AND TRACK
The 570S shows an evolution in the design direction for McLaren, with the McLaren ‘face’ seen on models in the Super Series and Ultimate Series sharpened further. This unique and striking appearance has been designed by air, with a bespoke aerodynamic package including aero blades below the front bumper giving a purposeful stance while channelling clean, cold air through the lower leading edge of the bodywork. Large ultra bright LED headlamps, fitted as standard to all Sports Series models, flank a sculpted bonnet which channels airflow over the front wheelarches. The intricately designed dihedral doors, a McLaren design signature since the iconic F1, possess a three dimensional form including a ‘floating’ door tendon which houses a discreet door button. This unique feature divides the airflow, channelling it into the side intakes and underneath the flying buttresses. This architectural structure ensures drag is minimised along the profile of the 570S, while also optimising levels of cooling and downforce.
Flying buttresses at the rear of the teardrop-shaped glasshouse form part of the aero package, directing air over the shoulderline of the 570S and across the rear deck aiding heat evacuation from the exposed engine bay and increasing downforce. Super-formed aluminium rear fenders ensure clean air is delivered to the fixed rear spoiler, again maximising downforce. The rear of the car is clean and uncluttered, with LED light blade rear lamps which follow the form of the sculpted panels. The rear of the vehicle features an aluminium mesh allowing effective heat evacuation as well as a view into the engine bay. This sits below a concave rear window, another signature Sports Series Coupé design cue. The twin exhausts exit below the rear bumper, either side of a newly designed and highly intricate rear diffuser.
The Sports Series has its own newly-developed suspension system ensuring enhanced levels of driver engagement and refinement on both road and track. It uses independent adaptive dampers with front and rear anti-rollbars – distinct from the Super Series – and dual wishbones, with the set up controlled by the familiar ‘Normal’, ‘Sport’ and ‘Track’ handling settings. In ‘Normal’ mode, the system provides a refined yet engaging ride, while the ‘Sport’ and ‘Track’ settings allow the 570S to become more track-focused when required.
THE MOST USABLE McLAREN TO DATE
Like every McLaren the cabin of the 570S has been designed around the driver, with a clear focus on engagement, visibility, functionality and more than any McLaren before it, day-to-day usability and space. As standard, the sports seats are leather upholstered – racing seats are optional – offering a high level of long distance comfort and support. The dashboard and steering wheel are also all leather trimmed. Intelligent and ergonomic design within the cabin provides extended stowage space, with the most usable space of any McLaren model to date. This adds to the 150 litres of storage in the front luggage bay.
The 570S is comprehensively equipped with a full infotainment system including an all new TFT digital instrument cluster that changes configuration according to driving mode, a seven-inch IRIS touchscreen, now with integrated climate control functionality, Bluetooth connectivity and DAB digital / SIRIUS satellite radio (depending on market), mounted on a ‘floating’ centre console. Despite the extensive specification list, weight-saving is still a key focus on the interior and the McLaren Audio four-speaker system ensures the optimal sound quality at the lowest possible weight.
With the Sports Series, an even greater variety of interior customisation is available with a variety of factory available Alcantara®, nappa leather and carbon fibre options. In addition, McLaren designers have created a range of ‘By McLaren’ bespoke interior specifications, similar to those also available on the 675LT, teaming carefully selected colours and materials designed to best showcase the stylish cabin space and co-ordinate with each exterior paint colour. In addition to this, a McLaren Audio Plus 8-Speaker Upgrade System and bespoke Bowers & Wilkins 12-Speaker Premium Audio System with 1280W surround sound upgrade is also available for the ultimate audio experience.
McLAREN 570S TECHNICAL STATISTICS
|0-100 km/h (0-62 mph)||3.2 seconds|
|0-200 km/h (0-124 mph)||9.5 seconds|
|Top speed||328 km/h (204 mph)|
|Power-to-weight||434PS per tonne|
ENGINE & POWERTRAIN
|Engine Configuration||V8 Twin Turbo / 3799cc|
|Power||570PS (562 bhp) @ 7,400 rpm|
|Torque||600Nm (443 lb ft) @ 5,000-6,500 rpm|
|Transmission||7 Speed SSG|
|Economy||25.5 mpg (EU combined)|
DIMENSIONS & WEIGHT
|Dry weight||1,313 kg (2,895 lb) with lightweight options|
|Weight distribution||42 / 58|
Before the end of the decade, Mercedes-Benz will expand its product range into a promising segment by launching the first pickup from a premium manufacturer. Thanks to their versatility, all-round utility, and payload of around one metric ton, pickups are popular across the world and thus have good sales potential.
“The Mercedes-Benz pickup will contribute nicely to our global growth targets,” says Dr. Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars Division. “We will enter this segment with our distinctive brand identity and all of the vehicle attributes that are typical of the brand with regard to safety, comfort, powertrains, and value.”
Volker Mornhinweg, Head of Mercedes-Benz Vans, adds: “As part of our ‘Mercedes-Benz Vans goes global’ strategy, the pickup is the ideal vehicle for the international expansion of our product range with a newly developed model.”
A promising segment with global scope
The midsize pickup segment is currently undergoing a transformation worldwide. More and more pickups are being used for private purposes, and commercial as well as private users are increasingly asking for vehicles that have car-like specifications.
Mercedes-Benz is the first premium manufacturer to respond to this market shift by developing its own pickup. A similar example was the successful introduction of the M-Class around 20 years ago. As the first sport utility vehicle (SUV) from a premium manufacturer, the M-Class completely redefined the segment.
The new Mercedes-Benz pickup will initially be targeted at markets in Latin America, South Africa, Australia, and Europe, all of which are posting sustained growth in this segment.
Mercedes-Benz Vans: Centre of competence for commercially and privately used vehicles
The Mercedes-Benz Vans division is responsible for the new vehicle. With its many years of experience in developing, manufacturing, and marketing vehicles that are used commercially as well as privately, Mercedes-Benz Vans is ideally suited to enter the midsize pickup segment and launch a Mercedes-Benz pickup on the market for the first time in the company’s history. Current models such as the V-Class and the Vito demonstrate that Mercedes-Benz Vans has the high level of expertise to successfully serve customers from a wide variety of private and commercial sectors.
“We can perfectly serve customers looking for a vehicle that offers a high level of utility and at the same time has the comfort, safety, and design of a Mercedes-Benz passenger car,” says Mornhinweg. “We will design our brand’s first pickup according to this recipe for success.”
After a successful haul in our $2,000,000 Amelia Island Challenge, we’re heading south to the Auctions America sale in Fort Lauderdale. Our Petrolhead Godmother continues with her generosity; this time with $1,000,000 to play with this weekend. Using Auction America’s HIGH estimate, choose one or choose several cars (no motorbikes or automobilia) that you would like to bring home. We’ll get started:
Featured in a Pick Of The Day last year, this is an presentable example of a car rarely seen on these shores. While it shows signs of wear and previous body repairs, this Peugeot 504 has had recent paint and is a complete example of a classic Pininfarina styling.
Not much information is in the catalog beyond the history of the V8 as a model, but this looks to be a rather tidy example, complete with books and tools. Although it is an automatic, it would still make for some very pleasant open touring.
Although we aren’t given an odometer reading other than its condition belies the miles, this looks to be an excellent original example of a one-year-only 5-speed 930. Its high estimate would appear to be a bargain relative to other 1989s in like condition (not to mention the 1976 model that runs earlier in the day, estimated at $200,000).
This is another one of those lots that we’d chase only when Petrolhead Godmother is footing the bill, but that said, it is dandy. Powered by a 350 V8, its steel body has been chopped, stanced, channeled and dropped. Period wheels and tires cover front disc brakes. A very nicely built blend of bootleg-era looks and contemporary performance.
The C-Body Cadillacs of 1948 and 1949 brought together big advances in engineering with the overhead-valve V8 and alluring looks. Here we see the first nubs of Harley Earl’s tailfins punctuating a sleek and graceful body, particularly in the fastback “Sedanette” form. This one form 1949 was a former barn find restored to its current condition with a rebuilt original drivetrain. It’s a positively gorgeous American cruiser that is said to drive quite well.
The Renault R5 Turbo is in many ways an answer to a question no-one was asking. It’s a completely insane answer, yet it makes perfect sense at the same time. Take a pedestrian Renault R5 (what we might remember as Le Car) and transform it into a mid-engined beast that eats supercars for breakfast. This example looks to have been restored at some point to what appears to be a high degree, yet appears to have been used as intended which is to drive the merde out of it. What’s not to love?
Petrolhead Godmother always says, “if you get thrown from a bull, get right back on.” We missed out on the Lamborghini Countach 5000S Quattrovalvole at Gooding and Company’s Amelia Island sale earlier this month, thus we’re somewhat compelled to try again. This time it’s the ultimate expression of the Countach, the coveted 25th Anniversary model. This one shows beautifully in its classic Italian combination of red on tan. With a recent service and less than 21,000 km, it promises to be appropriately raging.
Few capture the charm of early British motoring the way an MG TC does. Future TDs and TFs were already becoming too modern. This one from 1948 has been used sparingly since undergoing an older high quality restoration. It condition remains show worthy, but this little thing begs to be thrown on the open road, only stopping for a picnic. The Clipper Blue finish is a nice departure as well.
We came to a total of $922,000. Buyer’s premiums will put us slightly over the million dollar mark, but once again we’ll err on the side of excess when spending the Petrolhead Godmother’s money. Let us know what your picks are in comments.
For the complete Auctions America Fort Lauderdale 2015 results click here.