With BMW going FWD and adopting giant grills over driving thrills, the thought of getting your hands on a driver-focused RWD BMW may appeal to you a heck of a lot more now. The most hardcore BMW M2 ever, the M2 CS confirming 28 units for our shores it’s pretty easy to remind yourself why we’ll miss old school BMW’s.
2021 BMW M2 CS Specs
Powered by the same revised version of the S55 engine as the M4 CS, power is rated as 331kW and 550Nm. The option of a 6-Speed manual or 7-Speed DCT gearbox is available. The Rear wheel 19-inch Y-spoke forged lightweight alloy wheels in a high-gloss black or optionally a matt gold. Tasked with contending with the brutal 4-second 0-100 sprint time and connecting the CS with the road are standard Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres. Top speed has been limited to 280km/h via the M Drivers Package.
The focus of reducing weight with lightweight composite materials throughout. Carbon fibre is used for the roof, bonnet and new front aerodynamic splitter. Adaptive M Suspension and M Sport brakes are standard and new ball joints and elastomeric bearings have been fitted to the axles, in addition to the forged wheel hubs and control arms. Carbon-ceramic brakes are optionally available and (when fitted) result in a 25kg weight savings. Internally the CS continues to use extensive amounts of carbon on the centre council, door pulls and trim. Being an’ car the headrest-mounted logos have been replaced with ‘CS’ nomenclature. The seats are leather and Alcantara trimmed standard Competition Sport Seats.
2021 BMW M2 CS Pricing in South Africa
With 30 units coming to South Africa only 28 will be made available for sale via auction to the top 300 M customers. The bids will be places on preassembled vehicles optioned and spec’ed in either manual or auto, the choice of one of the four colours: Hockenheim Silver, Sapphire Black, Alpine White and Misano Blue will be available. The standard model asks a cool R1 million and change and the CS will likely be sold for around R1.4 million with higher-optioned models demanding higher prices
Alfa Romeo has looked into their deep pockets of racing prowess to create what is dubbed to be the return of the Gran Turismo Alleggerita moniker. Translated from Alfa speak ‘GTA’ means lightweight and carries some serious weight in its near 110 years of the carmaker’s existence. The Guilia Quadrifoglio just exudes this terribly lustful super salon-like aura. Now almost 5 years after its initial introduction, the F1 Race Engineering Team has donated some of its greatest minds with the promise to make this a rival to the likes of the most hardcore. This anniversary gift complete with the option to drop the rear seats for harness’ and a roll cage comes set with carbon fibre right-hooks with BMW’s M4 GTS and Jaguar’s Project-8 in its Crosshairs.
The GTA and GTAm’s focus on lightweight antics is to the tune of 100Kgs, the extensive use of aerodynamic splitters and wings in composite materials is to be expected. The Sauber F1 team’s hand in the development has resulted in the use of an Active front splitter set in carbon-fibre, with tweaks to the aerodynamics via their ‘aerokit’ that places canards and gussets in the revised bodywork to channel air to increase downforce. An Akrapovič Titanium exhaust system, integrated into the carbon fibre rear diffuser now standard, with the centre-locking 20-inch wheels. The tweaks have resulted in a further 50mm addition to the vehicle track, new shocks, springs and stiffer bushings for the suspension. The GTAm gains a Carbon Rear wing for additional downforce and larger adjustable active carbon front splitter, creating a far more purposeful look to the very elegant and sculpted lines of the standard model.
Importantly for the Alfa is the increase in power from the Ferrari sourced 2.9 Litre V6 Bi-Turbo. 375kW by no means meant this was a car that felt underpowered and in fact, in RACE, where all the safety net nannies are put to sleep the driving experience requires a very alert driver with the rear often seeking mischief when taking on a more tooth and nail approach to driving. The GTA revisions have resulted in 397kW through increased turbo pressure, stronger pistons and rods and important cooling upgrades.
The interior benefits from the uses of Alcantara trimmings on the door panels, dashboard, side pillars, glove box and seats. The GTAm gains a more hardcore approach to weight savings which the option to ditch the rear bench and rear door cards and racecar-like additions. A rearseat mounted harness bar complete with 6-point Sabelt harness’, Lexan side and rear window frames, carbon fibre and aluminium pannel substitutions. All of which have resulted in 100Kgs in weight savings total and 3.6 Seconds to the 100km/h sprint, from what remains ultimately a full-sized rear-wheel-drive saloon car. The Standard GTA model gaining the dynamic enhancements but remains less compromised with rear seats and a smaller front splitter for daily driving.
Alfa Romeo Giulia GTA in South Africa
With only 500 models set for production, the GTA and GTAm will be a hell of a thing and offers an uncompromised approach to the standard model. Even with the limited run, a few examples have been destined for our shores, South Africa’s passionate relationship with the Alfa name will gain another piece of history but more importantly put large, terrified smiles on the faces on a lucky few, complete with a ‘personalised experience package’ available with races suit and helmet on delivery.
The new year brings with it the need to keep making fast wagons and Sportback’s, in response to pressure from 600hp Barnstormers such as the BMW M5 and Merc’s E63.
Audi has confirmed the dates for the launch of both S7 and the full cream RS7 Sportback. First seen internationally in October, it lent the brands 4-litre twin-turbocharged V8 offering 441kW and 800Nm driven through Quattro-AWD with sports differential and 8-speed Automatic, to a 48 Volt Mild-Hybrid Energy regeneration system from the rest of the A7 range.
The 48V belt-driven alternator starter brings forth the idea of the true performance attributes that a Biturbo V8 posses, off-set by the system that is set to combat fuel economy through cylinder deactivation and coasting with the engine switched off at up to 160Km/h.
The idea may be conceptually sound but only a drive of the car will express its effect. Typical of any serious version of a sports production car the overall width has expanded to the tune of 40mm. Sharing only the front doors, roof and the rear tailgate on fastback models. Optional 22-inch fill each corner accommodatingly seamlessly integrating the aerodynamic and cat-eye touching sleekness. The 20mm lowered ride height is key to the standard adaptive dynamic air suspension and all-wheel steering with up to 5 degrees opposite directional movement at low speed and same direction at speed.
Internally Premium RS-embossed leather sport seats with colour cross-stitching. Alcantara touches on the flat-bottom steering wheel and gear selector provide a clear explanation of the focus here. The Steering allows for the storage of RS1 and RS2 settings via buttons allowing dynamic configurations. Being a modern flagship Audi, the focus on Light, tech and dynamics is astonishingly impressive. The three displays serve to create an uncluttered environment, with endless integration of technology. MMI user interfaces, driver-assist systems, adaptivity, LTE connectivity, virtual cockpit, its all rather vast. 2+2 was offered in the Sportback at its initial debut but so too the typical 3-seater rear beach. The large oval exhausts, LED Matrix lights and a darker tint of Sportback rear lights, fit into the lines of the car and the darkened elements and touches through the entirety of the car in a way that makes it a terribly pretty car.
The most important aspect of this car is the powertrain, and the 4.0Litre V8 propels the RS7 to a 3.6 Second 0-100, which frankly is laughable given the rapidness offered among this and its peers in consideration to the 2065Kg weight. Quattro’s latest rendition offers the ability to spilt power in a 40:60 Front/Rear with a maximum of an 85% rear split is possible. The shove on offer will drive you to an optional extra Top Speed 304Km/h. To bring the massive car to order as standard ten piston breaks are fitted 440mm Carbon Ceramics are available as options.
The numbers suggest an impressive car and at this point and having sampled product few of The Audi Era, and the new A7 as a whole and the cabin is just a wholesome meal of technologic brilliance the way it comes together is very well executed. Audi is making some very good cars right now and the RS7 sounds like that magic is translated, I do fear what the true drives experience behind the 48V works in such a performance-focused machine but only next year will tell, but the duality offered by the frankly “Return on the great” M5 Competition and the equally action movie star E63 S with the large executive salon that they all pull off so well.
Audi RS7 Pricing
Pricing will follow its September 2020 Launch in Sportback trim with an Avant joining later.
Engine: 4.0-litre V8 Bi-turbo 48V-hybrid Belt-driven alternator system
Where there is a hill to be climbed, someone at some point will endeavor to climb it. Humans do this, it must be in our nature to choose a thing that’s bigger than us and then scale it, only to poke a flag in it once the summit has been reached. One step further than this, though, is racing another human to the top, conquering not only the hill, but your competitor too!
Now in its eighth edition and the fourth to be sponsored by Jaguar South Africa, the Jaguar Simola Hillclimb 2017 promises to be the ultimate showcase of people racing up a hill, as we like to do. Considered by many to be the most prestigious motorsport event in South Africa, the Hillclimb has grown exponentially from its humble beginnings back in 2009 to the local equivalent of the iconic Goodwood Festival of Speed, having had over 14 000 motorsport fans grace the hill in 2016.
The cream of the motorsport crop are to be found at the Hillclimb with legends such as Ian Scheckter, Mike Briggs, Deon Joubert, Leeroy Poulter and Sarel van der Merwe having taken part over the past 7 events. Of course, the cars are important too – nobody would fly all the way to Knysna to bear witness to a running race between Mike Briggs and Franco Scribante…
Porsche 917 and 956, Ariel Atom, various Lotus’, countless Ferraris and the usual brigade of supercars such as the McLaren 650S, Lamborghini Aventador and Jaguar F-Type have all taken part, as well as a handful of Formula 1 cars from a bygone era.
The 2017 programme sees a slight tweak with the King of the Hill event being split into three categories – SuperCar Shootout, Sports Cars and Single Seaters and Modified Saloons. This ensures that competition is fair and that each competitor stands a chance against the other hillclimbers. The fastest cars in each category will then go head to head in a shootout to crown the King of the Hill.
We look forward to seeing all the action from the Jaguar Simola Hillclimb – if the hype and success of the previous years is anything to go by, this year’s event promises to be quite the spectacle!
The Hottest BMW M4 Has Arrived in South Africa: The BMW M4 CS
Since the beginning of the compact sports coupe, the BMW M3, now called the M4 in its Coupe variant, has been the yardstick and the go to car for all that is good in that segment. Over the years, it’s faced competition from Mercedes, Audi, Jaguar and now recently, Alfa Romeo but it’s still widely regarded as the king in this segment.
The gap, though, between the BMW and its peers has shrunk in recent times and upon seeing this, the Bavarians have launched a special, limited and rare as an honest politician version, and it’s headed to South Africa. This new or updated M version, dons the name M4 CS. Not CSL, CS. This car is meant to slot in between the M4 Competition Package and the GTS, of which there are only 25 units in South Africa. So for all intents and purposes, this will be the hottest M4 that you can now buy in South Africa. That’s discounting the rare GTS DTM Champion Edition which is due in SA imminently. Can BMW make up their minds already?!
Power comes from the same 3.0 litre twin-turbo straight six, delivering no less that 339 kW and 600 N.m of torque. This translates to a 3.9 seconds 0-100 km/h and a top speed of 280km/h. Visual changes will be easy to spot for the BMW die-hard fans. From the revised rear spoiler and rear diffuser at the rear to the classic mix of leather and alcantara in the cabin with M colours adorning to seat belts, seats and steering wheel, you’ll know that this M4 is special. The biggest change is found at the rear where the OLED lights from the GTS form part of the CS standard equipment. The CS gets special light weight alloys that are wrapped in Michelin Pilot Cup 2 semi slick tyres which no doubt, will help set a blazing time around “the green hell” of 07:38”, a full 14 seconds faster than a standard M4, and we all know that in the world of track driving, 14 seconds is a lifetime.
So in our opinion, BMW has made sure that it has enough variations of the M4 to ward of attacks from different manufacturers for the Sports Coupe title which it so deservedly owns, and from what we are reading, it seems as though they have bought themselves more time. Question is though, how long can they keep this up?
In theory, fast SUV’s make no sense. A high-riding AWD vehicle capable of 0-100 km/h in 4.0 seconds and top speeds well north of 250 km/h yet incapable of traversing more than a pavement makes as much sense as a mid-engined supercar that can only go off-road with the performance figures of a Land Rover Defender, but alas, there seems to be a market for these. Back when the Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT was first launched in 2006, it was the fastest SUV money could buy, right up until every manufacturer under the sun put over 300 kW in one SUV or another.
11 years later, Jeep have done it again by plonking the Dodge Challenger Hellcat’s 6.2-litre supercharged V8 into the Grand Cherokee. The numbers are truly remarkable – 523 kW and 881 N.m. To put that into context, a BMW X5 M produces 423 kW/750 N.m and anyone who has ever experienced the sheer shock of launching the 2.5 tonne behemoth to 100 km/h and beyond can attest to the g-forces experienced. So how would you feel, then, if I told you that the Trackhawk is faster?
A snazzy Torque Reserve pre-positioning the supercharger bypass valve to generate boost and minimize manifold filling time while cutting fuelling to individual cylinders and managing spark timing in order to provide improved engine torque response and quicker vehicle acceleration in Launch Control. In short, this generates a reserve of torque that can be instantaneously delivered upon acceleration from a standing stop.
At 14 600 rpm, 2,380cc of air pass through the supercharger per revolution which comes with integral charge-air coolers. What this means is that the Grand Cherokee Trackhawk will out accelerate an Audi RS6 and keep going all the way to 290 km/h. 3.5 seconds to 100 km/h is quite a cool number to flaunt around the lawyer’s office or whatever professional workspace you might commute to in your ‘murican monster.
As with most performance cars these days, endless configuration is possible and a few design queues such as quad-exit exhaust pipes and carbon fibre remind you of the grunt under your bonnet. Aside from this, the Trackhawk isn’t as lary as one might expect. All that torque is fed through a modified TorqueFlite 8-speed automatic transmission, as well as a strengthened transfer case. The Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk goes on sale in the USA in the 4th quarter of 2017 but there is no word yet on local availability or pricing.
South African Launch of the Aston Martin Vanquish S
For as long as humans have lusted over motorcars, the question of whether or not a car can be considered to be art has existed. Silly as it may seem, many an art aficionado has gazed upon such beauties as the Jaguar E-Type, Ferrari 250 GT California Spyder SWB and E60 BMW M5 (a personal favourite) and have thought, “Psh, this is not art.” What these dreary individuals seem to completely miss, however, is that these vehicles are but three examples of a pool of cars we consider to be greater than the sum of their parts.
Similarly, there has been ambiguity as to whether photography can be considered to be art ever since it became commonplace in the 19th century and arguments such as “photography is too literal to compete with works of art” and that it is “unable to elevate the imagination” do not help the cause. Thankfully, then, a charming fellow by the name of Clint Strydom has gone off, armed with his camera and an Aston Martin One-77, and much like a naughty child skipping Physical Education on a Friday afternoon, stuck it to the man. Commissioned by Aston Martin Lagonda to capture the essence of their iconic brand, what Clint has come up with is truly remarkable.
Apt then, that Dr Ulrich Bez, Chairman of Aston Martin once said that “The true value of a work of art lies in the unique relationship between the art itself, its creator and ultimately its owner.” He then goes on to relate this to the cars which Aston Martin produce, noting that each vehicle reflects the personality of its owner in its unique specification – unless it’s second-hand, of course.
The local unveiling of the Aston Martin Vanquish S took place in Melrose Arch on the High Street, between the Daytona Melrose Arch Dealership and The Melrose Gallery where an exquisite exhibition of both Clint’s Inspired by Aston Martin series and a series of Esther Mahlangu’s works were on display. The significance of this was noted by few as Esther Mahlangu is one of the very few artists in the world to have been commissioned by BMW on two separate occasions to create a BMW Art Car, another amalgamation of the automotive and artistic spheres. The presence of these two visionaries was a fitting setting, then, for the local debut of Gaydon’s latest masterpiece and the halo vehicle of the Aston Martin brand.
The differences between the Aston Martin Vanquish and Vanquish S
Very similar to the “standard” Vanquish, only the eagle-eyed will notice the subtle differences between the Vanquish and its S counterpart. Most notable is the new aerodynamic package with its extended front splitter and rear diffuser, both fashioned from exposed carbon fibre and designed to reduce front lift with a minimal increase in parasitic drag. New quad exhaust pipes also emphasise the Vanquish S’ performance oriented character, as do the subtle changes to Aston Martin’s signature grille and side strakes.
Carbon fibre bonnet louvres, forged rims and various graphics packs can also be fitted to the Vanquish S.
Inside the vehicle, options with long and confusing names can be had such as “Bridge of Weir Caithness” leather and a Chopped Carbon Fibre finish which again suggests the overtly sporty nature of this flagship model.
Most notable changes are found beneath the skin in the form of all carbon fibre bodywork and recalibration of the 8-speed Touchtronic III transmission which now delivers faster gearshifts and is more refined at low speeds. Alterations to the inlet manifolds ups the power of the sonorous AM29 6.0-litre naturally-aspirated V12 from 424 kW/630 N.m (2014 onwards) to 444 kW/630 N.m. The larger volume inlet manifolds allow for a greater volume of air to flow into the engine at high rpm’s, creating stronger pull all the way to the redline as well as notably improved throttle response. 0-100 km/h is dealt with in 3.5 seconds and top speed is 323 km/h if you’re the sort of person who is concerned with those figures.
All of these aspects combine to create a GT which offers a distinctly different experience to the DB11, yet one that is still notably a product of the Aston Martin marque. The question is, do you feel that the Vanquish S is a work of art? If looking at it as a piece of art, some would say that at its starting price of R4 950 000, it’s a steal, but those who see it as just a motorcar might argue that that is quite a lot of money…
I leave you with this sentiment, then – you can gaze in awe at the lines, craftsmanship and attention to detail found in an Aston Martin, but you can’t drag race a painting.
In my mind, Audi’s RS5 has always had a unique appeal in the very sporty small coupe segment. While BMW’s M3 has always been the nimble and dynamic youth in a hoody and Mercedes-AMG’s C63 the grandpa in All Stars, the last generation RS5 suffered from an identity crisis and was neither supremely comfortable nor tekkie squeaking fast, but it was one of those cars that you wanted and preferably without a roof.
The same could be said for each of the above’s fan bases with the Audi, again, sucking hind-teet while the C63 and M3’s were scooped up by young millionaires and old folk recapturing their youth. Every time I see an RS5, I struggle to place its driver into a category and be mean, but is this such a bad thing?
Stereotyping aside, the RS5 was great when it launched 7 years ago, a time when the E92 M3 reigned supreme and grandpa sported a 6.2-litre masterpiece in his AMG All Stars. The RS5’s 4.2-litre V8 was a meaty and burbly unit and as a whole, the RS5 was the weapon of choice for those who preferred to be discreet, yet dashing. Unfortunately, on the performance front at least, the RS5 has been left behind in recent years by the turbocharged F82 and W205.
Fast forward to 2017 and the new RS5 has again befallen the recently tabooed fate of all engines – downsizing. Harkening back to the days of the B5 RS4, the all-new RS5 sports a 2.9 litre doubly force-fed V6, putting out an M3/4 Competition Package matching 331 kW and 170 N.m more than the old naturally aspirated V8 at 600 N.m. This should be good for a 3.9 second 0-100 km/h sprint, accompanied by one of motoring’s all-time favourite soundtracks, an Audi V6. The motor is in fact the same unit found in the new Porsche Panamera, and will undoubtedly blend performance and economy in a typically Germanic and clinical fashion.
While the engine is big news, the indistinguishable crowd of people who buy RS5’s will perhaps swoon over its blacked-out LED headlights, beefy bumpers and oval holes that house the exhausts. It’s actually 17 mm wider than the model it replaces yet 60 kg lighter which is about as much as a fat child. Accompanying the reduction in weight is a multi-link suspension set-up at the rear which replaces the trapezoidal-link from the previous model.
Consumption is also vastly better than before with a claimed combined average of 7.2 l/100km.
There’s no word yet on local availability or pricing but a good guess would be the first quarter of 2018 for a million and a bit.
The trend of downsizing may be slowing down but it’s still something most manufacturers are doing when developing a new car. Not Ferrari though, specifically when it comes to their V12 engine. The Ferrari V12 is something special to most petrolheads and it’s great to see that it won’t be dying anytime soon. Think of cars like 575 M and the F12 TDF, would you want that sound to be no longer? Of course not. Well then you’ll be happy to know that the 812 Superfast is going to be revealed soon at the Geneva Motor Show. This car uses a 588kW (800hp) and 718Nm 6.5 litre V12 to power the Berlinetta. It is as Ferrari puts it “the new benchmark in the mid-front-engined sports car segment”.
So it’s fast as you can expect, with the name Superfast you can’t really expect anything less. The Superfast uses Variable Geometry Intakes which if it uses a similar setup to the LaFerrari, means it uses a single tube per cylinder bank that can change its length depending on engine speed. This gives the car the choice to use a longer intake manifold under load and a shorter intake at higher rpm. You still with us? If not it means the car gets the right amount of air at the right time, making it superfast all the time. See what we did there?
Other cool features in the 812 Superfast are Side Slip Control, which allows you to drift without crashing. The Virtual Short Wheelbase system also makes the car more nimble and the Superfast makes use of Electric Power Steering. Oh, and it also uses a double clutch gearbox to make sure that all those horses don’t get wasted. So much so it does a 0-100km/h in a time of 2.9 seconds, not bad for a car that’s not extremely lightweight.
The most controversial aspect of this Superfast is the looks – some have mentioned how it has a bit of Corvette in it. We get where they’re coming from because if you squint your eyes, you can see it. Knowing the folks at Fezza, they’ll probably say the Corvette was inspired by the 812. Anyways, all that matters is that the Ferrari V12 still lives and if Ferrari can have it their way, it will probably live on for as long as possible. Yay for more cylinders!
Give Horacio Pagani a wand and a robe and one could be forgiven for thinking that he is in fact a magical professor – what with his curvaceous silver locks and chiselled visage, he really does fit the role of Snape’s vertically challenged brother. However, with the unveiling of the Huayra Roadster, I am starting to question his muggleness more than ever…
Nothing could have quite prepared anybody for the sheer pornography that is the Huayra Roadster – from its squared off face to swishy bits above the taillights, it is a completely different box of frogs to the Huayra Coupe and that wasn’t exactly a Gremlin either.
Horacio himself recently described this project as having been the most difficult they have ever worked on, a statement which makes complete sense once you delve into what went into this work of art.
The project began in 2010 with the simple idea of creating a Huayra without a roof. Three years later, all the design work was scrapped and they began from scratch with the goal of creating a vehicle lighter than the Coupe still in mind.
Power comes from the M158 Twin Turbo V12 from Mercedes-AMG, built especially for Pagani and producing an immense 592 kW and over 1000 N.m from its 6.0-litres. All that torque is available, too, from just 2 400 RPM. This allows the Roadster to sprint to 100 km/h in under 3 seconds, obviously a relevant figure…
This power is fed through a new single-clutch automated manual transmission developed for the Huayra BC and while not as immediate as its double-clutch counterparts, its lightweight construction offsets the slower shift time allowing a better power-to-weight ratio than if a double-clutch unit were to be used. The gearbox is also mounted transversely which reduces the polar inertia of the vehicle, just in case you were wondering.
Most impressive, however, is that the Roadster is some 25% lighter than the Coupe, yet 50% more rigid. A feat like this is almost unheard of in the automotive sphere, especially when one considers just how wiggly a car becomes when its roof is removed.
Other highlights include special Pirelli tyres with Horacio’s initials on them (how ostentatious) new carbon-ceramic brakes, a new ESP system and two roofs – one a glass and carbon-fibre jobby which only fits into one orifice in the vehicle – the one above your head – and the other a tent which can quickly be erected in the event of sudden moisture.
Only 100 will be made and they have all been sold for a ridiculous outlay of $2.8 million Dollars. I now urge you to zoom into these images and ogle at the attention to detail that has gone into this vehicle.
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