It’s fair to say we were transfixed. Agog. Speechless. Rarely, since that heady November day, have we stopped thinking of the Youabian Puma and its inimitable lines.
If you, like us, were hypnotised by that first glimpse of Puma, today is your lucky today. For today, Dr Youabian - a Los Angeles cosmetic surgeon, and owner of the company - has released a promotional video for his extraordinary creation, and it is everything we dared hope. [x]
This is the HuracanSuper Trofeo, the racing version of the Son ofGallardo. Created with the help of Dallara, it’s been cooked up specifically for Lamborghini’s Blancpain Super Trofeo one-make series that currently runs in Asia, Europe and North America.
As you can see, the Huracan’s aerodynamics have been substantially revised for track. There’s a massive watch-out-for-your-ankles chin spoiler and dive plane at the front, flat under-tray and diffuser setup at the rear, and a vast ten-way adjustable rear wing springing from the rear deck.
The combined effect is to make the Huracan look like a prop from the armory of Game of Thrones… and generate enough downforce to vacuum-pack the Lambo the track. Extra grip will come courtesy of bespoke set of Pirellis wrapped around those lightweight rims. [x]
Good thing McLaren doesn’t listen to TopGear. This is the P1 GTR, a track-only racer revealed at California’s ritzy Pebble Beach meet. A car, says McLaren, with a simple aim: to be the best driver’s car in the world on track. A car with yet more power than the absurdly powerful road-going P1.
How much more power? Precisely 83bhp more than the, ahem, standard P1, taking overall output from the 3.8-litre twin-turbo V8 and electric motor to 986bhp. Veyron power.
McLaren is yet to reveal performance figures, but the GTR will trump the road-going P1’s 0-62mph of 2.8 seconds. Not much save a top fuel dragster will get off the line quicker. [x]
Interestingly, the Viva name won’t be used in the rest of Europe, we’re told by a senior Vauxhall source. Likely over there it’ll be called Agila, the name of the car it replaces. Indeed, the Viva name hasn’t been officially announced, but it’s something Vauxhall has researched and found the public likes, and “I can’t say but if you asked me I’d smile,” said our big-cheese.
All of which means Vauxhall is dead-set on selling more small cars in Britain than anyone else. Including the mighty Ford. “We’ll give Ford a bloody good run for their money in small cars. We’ll have three great small cars. They have the Fiesta, which is great, and the Ka, which isn’t,” said Vauxhall’s boss Tim Tozer. [x]
It still gets lots of good bits, though. Underneath is the same carbon fibre MonoCell chassis and 3.8-litre twin turbo V8 powering the rear wheels, just like the road car (and that pesky GT3). The engine gets revised air intakes, while both engine and drivetrain get unique ECU calibrations too.
Then there’s the FIA-approved roll cage, a lightweight carbon fibre HANS device, six point racing harness, and even air-conditioning. And that last point is not a frivolous, quirky thing - it gets bloody hot in race cars. Aston is even working on a solar panel to power its future GT car air-con systems. So keeping cool is important. [x]
This SVR pumped around the Green Hell in eight minutes and 14 seconds, making it faster than - if you believe in such fairytale times at the ‘Ring - the Lexus IS-F, original Honda NSX and as quick as a Merc C63 AMG. [x]
RRM’s 250bhp Abarth reckons it can smash a Lotus Exige around a race track. Still looks adorable.
There’s something adorably incongruous about the world’s desire to turn the bug-eyed, cute-as-a-very-cute-button Fiat500 into a circuit-devouring sports-thing. Like arming a Labrador puppy with a claymore.
The design mind behind the Bronco is taking it back with all-electric Tesla-based aluminium rocket.
Meet the Icon Helios, an Californian dream machine packing an all-electric platform, and bodywork surely dreamed up when Howard Hughes got drunk with Gordon Buehrig.
Actually, that’s the analogy Icon’s owner, Jonathan Ward, uses to explain his latest vision. “One way or another,” he revealed on Twitter, “I will build this car. Looking for the right client to commission it.”
A bit of history, first. Icon is famous for building one of TG’s favouritest ever cars, the Bronco; a reworked 1972 monster with an entirely new chassis underneath, a box-fresh 5.0-litre V8 up front and a good, solid slug of 400bhp and 400lb ft of torque.
There’s a purpose built Atlas II transfer case, custom Dynatrac Dana solid-axle assemblies and independent coilover suspension by Eiback and Fox Racing. So it’s a serious, serious bit of kit. [x]