Hyundai has built an electric double-decker bus

Hyundai electric bus

If you’re fed up with seeing near-empty buses chuntering through town, smoke billowing from their exhausts, Hyundai has the answer.

The company has unveiled an all-electric double-decker bus, so you can look forward to seeing near-empty buses chuntering through town, only without the associated smoke and pollution.

The leccy bus can seat up to 70 passengers, with 11 seats on the first floor and 59 on the second. But before you head upstairs for a swift fag, smoking has been banned on buses since 2007. The days of lighting up in the back of a Leyland National are long gone.

On the electric buses

Hyundai all-electric busHyundai’s electric bus is a thoroughly modern affair, featuring two fixed-in-space wheelchairs and an automatic sliding ramp and low floor design for disabled and mobility-impaired passengers.

At 12,990mm long and 3,995mm high, it’s somewhat larger than the company’s usual SUV crossover fare. But unlike most seven-seat SUVs, the seats at the back don’t require the skills of a contortionist to get to.

Independent suspension for the first driving axle should result in a more comfortable ride, although after too many journeys in airport transfer buses, we still wouldn’t recommend sitting close to the rear wheels.

A 384kWh water-cooled polymer battery provides a maximum driving range of 300km (186 miles), with a full charge completed in 72 minutes.

Optimised for eco-friendly trends

Hyundai electric double-decker bus

Other features include rear-wheel steering, forward collision-avoidance, lane-keeping assist, vehicle dynamic control and a driver who’d prefer the exact fare, please.

“The double-decker electric bus is an environmentally friendly vehicle optimised for global eco-friendly trends,” said ByoungWoo Hwang, head of commercial vehicle advanced engineering team at Hyundai Motor.

“This will not only ultimately improve the air quality, but also contribute greatly to easing commuting-hour traffic congestion by accommodating more passengers.”

The Hyundai electric bus will be arriving at a bus stop near you soon, although don’t be surprised if three turn up at the same time.

Hennessey Maximus Jeep Gladiator

Hennessey Performance has made a 1,000hp Jeep Gladiator

Hennessey Maximus Jeep GladiatorThe Jeep Gladiator pickup may already be proving hugely popular with off-road fans, but that hasn’t stopped John Hennessey from adding more power.

Seemingly, the regular 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine, with its 285 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque was not enough for the Texan tuning company.

Instead, Hennessey has “turned the power up to 11” in order to create what the company is now calling the “ultimate” version of the Gladiator.

Hennessey Maximus Jeep GladiatorBranded as the Maximus 1000, the versatile 6.2-liter Hellcat Hemi V-8 engine is found lurking beneath the hood of this Jeep.

Whilst the regular Hellcat engine produces 707 horsepower and 650 pound-feet of torque, not even this is sufficient for John Hennessey, who brands himself as “chief horsepower evangelist” for the firm.

The supercharged enginehas been modified, and is claimed to now offer up 1,000 horsepower and 933 pound-feet of torque. This is a substantial gain over the normal Gladiator, and has the potential to make the Maximus all-conquering in the rough.

Who needs a new Ferrari SF90 Stradale, anyway? 

An eight-speed automatic transmission is standard, whilst a stainless steel exhaust and modified ECU are some of the modifications made to boost the power output.

Hennessey Maximus Jeep GladiatorHennessey has also added bespoke front and rear bumpers, along with a set of special 20-inch wheels wearing off-road rubber.

An upgraded suspension system, giving the Gladiator a six-inch lift is also included, along with the gigantic LED light bar mounted on the roof.

The controversial Texan tuner plans to build just 24 units of the Maximus 1000. Buying one will each cost $200,000, although that does include the price of a regular Gladiator to act as a donor.

Production is slated to begin in July 2019, with Hennessey stating that individual vehicles will take around four months to build.

A third of UK motorists would drive away after a parking scrape

Parking peril

New research has revealed that 32 percent of UK motorists would opt to flee a parking scrape, rather than own up to damaging another car.

The study of 2,000 drivers by Euro Car Parts also uncovered the five places where drivers are most likely to smash and dash. Norwich comes fifth, scoring equal to the average at 32 percent. Glasgow and Liverpool are on 33 percent, while Oxford and London score 40 and 43 percent respectively. 

As for the gender-split, men were more likely than women to bump and run, with 36 percent saying they would, versus 28 percent of women.

Parking peeves

As for what irritates us most while parking, it comes as no surprise that expensive charges were near the top of the list.

Tight parking bays were an annoyance noted by 50 percent of respondents, while 47 percent said that double parkers and inconsiderate drivers got on their nerves.

Parking peril

“Parking can often be a challenge for motorists, especially in cramped and busy urban environments like large cities,” said Chris Barella of Euro Car Parts.

“But whilst we can’t control how narrow a parking space is or how badly other people park, we can make sure that our own cars are properly equipped to be able to park in inconvenient locations. By fitting cars with parking aids like sensors and reversing cameras, drivers can ensure that they’re fully prepared for the stresses of urban parking.”

Most beautiful Ferraris chosen for Maranello museum

Museo Enzo Ferrari Modena

The Enzo Ferrari Museum in Modena in hosting a ‘Timeless Masterpieces’ exhibition, which sees a selection of the marque’s finest cars lining up alongside artwork, furniture and electronics to provide historical and social context. If all that seems a bit long-winded, simply scroll through the images from the exhibition.

Museo Enzo Ferrari Modena

Museo Enzo Ferrari Modena

The exhibition can be found inside the stunning Museo Enzo Ferrari Modena, a 2,500-square-metre building split into five zones: 1-6-cylinder cars, classic 12-cylinders, 8-cylinders, turbos, and Formula 1 engines. They help to tell the story of Enzo Ferrari, from his childhood to success on the road and track.

Extraordinary, rare and exclusive

Museo Enzo Ferrari Modena

The press release accompanying the opening of the ‘Timeless Masterpieces’ exhibition is loaded with marketing waffle, but when you cut to the chase, you’ll discover that Ferrari has focused on three aspects over 72 years of design and manufacturing. The watchwords are ‘extraordinary’, ‘rare’ and ‘exclusive’.

Devoid of decoration for decoration’s sake

Museo Enzo Ferrari Modena

“Ferrari’s design language represents a delicate balance between the aesthetic principles of beauty and a rigorous quest for maximum function, devoid of decoration for decoration’s sake,” says the press release. The collection of cars was curated by a team led by Flavio Manzoni, head of design for Ferrari.

From Inter to Monza

Museo Enzo Ferrari Modena

The models on display are some of the most famous Ferraris in the marque’s history, including the 166 Inter from 1948, the 750 Monza from 1954 and the Monza SP1. Each one has been chosen to represent Ferrari’s aesthetic vision of their respective eras. Keep clicking to see some of the cars.

Ferrari 250 GTO

Ferrari 250 GTO at Museo Enzo Ferrari Modena

In 2018, a 1963 Ferrari 250 GTO sold for £52 million, making it the most expensive car ever sold. It was purchased by an American businessman, believed to be WeatherTech CEO David MacNeil. Stand still long enough, and you’ll be charged simply for looking at this 250 GTO.

Ferrari Monza SP1

Ferrari Monza SP1 at Museo Enzo Ferrari Modena

From the car that cemented the Ferrari legend, to a thoroughly modern reinterpretation of the open-top ‘barchetta’ racing cars of the 50s and 60s. The Monza SP1 was unveiled alongside the SP2 at the 2018 Paris Motor Show and is powered by the 800hp V12 engine from the 812 Superfast. The SP1 is a single-seater, while the SP2 – as the name suggests – has room for a passenger.

Ferrari 500 TRC

Ferrari 500 TRC at Museo Enzo Ferrari Modena

The Ferrari 500 TRC was built to satisfy new sporting regulations dictating that all ‘barchettas’ should have a tonneau cover “in canvas or other flexible material, demountable by hand and without the use of any tools”. Launched in 1957, the 500 TRC was not raced as a works car, but by privateers in Italian national and world championship events.

Ferrari 250 GT Berlinetta Lusso

Ferrari 250 GT Berlinetta Lusso at Museo Enzo Ferrari Modena

Here’s the 500 TRC once again, but if it’s possible, please divert your attention to the 250 GT Berlinetta Lusso in the background. Could this be one of Pininfarina’s finest creations? Unveiled as a prototype at the 1962 Paris Motor Show, the 250 GT Berlinetta Lusso was built in the workshops of Carrozzeria Scaglietti and powered by a V12 engine producing 240hp. None other than Battista Pininfarina drove a 250 GTL as his personal car.

Ferrari 365 GTS4

Ferrari 365 GTS4 at Museo Enzo Ferrari Modena

Another candidate for a list of the prettiest Ferraris ever made, the roadster version of the ‘Daytona’ was unveiled in 1969. In many ways, removing the roof simply added to the appeal, which meant that the 365 GTS4 was the car to be seen in during the late 60s and early 70s.

Ferrari 275 GTB

Ferrari 275 GTB at Museo Enzo Ferrari Modena

Launched in 1964, the 275 GTB was the first production Ferrari with independent suspension on all four wheels. Beneath the huge bonnet, you’ll find a V12 engine producing 280hp, while the styling was penned by Pininfarina. A total of 453 cars were built, with the closed GTB joined by the open 275 GTS.

Ferrari GTC4Lusso

Ferrari GTC4Lusso at Museo Enzo Ferrari Modena

Our Richard Aucock drove a Ferrari GTC4Lusso in 2016. His verdict: “Ferrari’s cut no corners with the GTC4Lusso, and it shows. It’s a highly accomplished GT car. Those who can afford it and take the time to understand how to get the most from it will find a very rewarding ownership proposition indeed.”

Ferrari 250 California

Ferrari 250 California at Museo Enzo Ferrari Modena

You can thank the US importer Luigi Chinetti for the birth of the 250 California in 1957. He encouraged Enzo Ferrari to build an open model for the American market – something suited to the Californian sun. A total of 106 were built until production ceased in 1962.

Ferrari California

Ferrari California at Museo Enzo Ferrari Modena

It would be fair to say that the California of 2008 doesn’t have quite the same level of appeal as its ancestor, but this was a hugely successful model for the brand. The new California was the first model to feature a front-mounted V8 engine and the first with a dual-clutch gearbox. This softer, more ‘affordable’ model introduced a new audience to the Ferrari brand.

In pictures:

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UK car production nearly HALVES due to Brexit

Nissan Juke car production in SunderlandThe Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) has described a huge 44.5 percent fall in UK car production as ‘extraordinary’ evidence of the ‘vast cost and upheaval’ Brexit has already caused the British car industry.

56,999 fewer cars were built in Britain during April 2019 as makers pulled forward and extended summer shutdowns. This was to cope with an expected Brexit date of 29 March.

It was the 11th consecutive decline in UK car production. So far in 2019, over 127,000 fewer cars have been built in Britain, a decline of 22.4 percent compared to 2018.

“Today’s figures are evidence of the vast cost and upheaval Brexit uncertainty has already wrought on UK automotive manufacturing businesses and workers,” said SMMT chief executive Mike Hawes.

“Prolonged instability has done untold damage.”

The SMMT added that the costly and wasted production shutdown cannot now be repeated for an October 31 deadline, exposing the UK car industry to further risk.

‘Take ‘no deal’ off the table’

Aston Martin supercar production in Gaydon

The fear of ‘no deal’, explained Hawes, has halted progress in the car industry, “causing investment to stall, jobs to be lost and undermining our global reputation.

“This is why ‘no deal’ must be taken off the table immediately and permanently, so industry can get back to the business of delivering for the economy and keeping the UK at the forefront of the global technology race.”

SMMT forecasts suggest that, if the UK leaves with a favourable deal and ‘substantial’ transition period, the decline in British car production could ease by the end of the year.

Despite this, 2019 production will still fall over 10 percent on 2018 levels – “and a ‘no deal’ Brexit could exacerbate this decline, with the threat of border delays, production stoppages and additional costs”.

Ferrari SF90 Stradale: full details of the new 1,000hp hybrid supercar

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale

The Ferrari SF90 Stradale is an all-new plug-in hybrid Ferrari that brings extremes of hypercar performance to the Italian brand’s series production range.

It doesn’t replace an existing model, but becomes the new 1,000 horsepower halo car that outguns even the LaFerrari, can drive for miles in zero-emissions electric mode, and is likely to cause furrowed brows at McLaren, Lamborghini, Porsche and Aston Martin when it arrives in early 2020.

Yes, revealed Ferrari, there is already a waiting list…

More on Motoring Research:

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale

Ferrari says the SF90 Stradale sets a new level for the market, with unprecedented performance even compared to racetrack specials such as the Ferrari FXX. “It is faster than any other Ferrari, ever” said chief marketing officer Enrico Galliera during the media presentation. “This car is a milestone,” agreed CEO Louis Camilleri.

Price? We’ll learn that soon – but “it will be less than the LaFerrari, but more than the 812 Superfast”. And worth every penny, Ferrari was at pains to point out during a glitzy, confident presentation at Fiorano, Italy.

90 years of Scuderia Ferrari

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale

The SF90 Stradale name has been chosen by Ferrari to underline the link between race and road. ‘SF90’ references 90 years of the Scuderia Ferrari race team, while ‘Stradale’ is Italian for road. Built on an all-new architecture that all future mid-engined models will use, there’s never been a Ferrari road car this extreme – and for the first time since the F40, the top-line Ferrari is a V8, rather than a V12. But it’s not just any V8…

The 780 horsepower 4.0-litre turbo V8 is derived from the F8 Tributo – named International Engine of the Year four times running, Ferrari proudly points out. Here, not only is it enlarged, it is heavily updated with features like new high-pressure fuel injection (giving it the highest output of any Ferrari V8 ever), and paired with a ‘Motor Generator Unit, Kinetic’, or MGU-K.

You’ll recognise this acronym from Formula 1: it’s a super-slim design that sits between engine and all-new 8-speed dual-clutch transmission (which shifts gears 30 percent faster than the standard-setting current unit). The engine also sits extremely low in the chassis: the turbos are positioned either side, just inches from the rear wheels; the exhausts exit overhead. 

There are two more electric motors driving the SF90 Stradale’s front wheels – yes, it’s the first 4WD Ferrari sports car – with the three motors producing 220 horsepower combined. Factor in the grip of all-wheel drive and 0-62mph in 2.5 seconds is achieved, which is yet another record for a Ferrari road car. Zero to 124mph? Just 6.7 seconds – faster than a McLaren Senna.

And, thanks to a 7.9 kWh lithium ion battery mounted behind the seats, it can drive nearly 16 miles as a pure EV. Ferrari adds there’s enough battery capacity to produce the full 1,000 horsepower on every racetrack in the world – including the Nürburgring. Challenge accepted, many will say.

As seen on screen

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale

The SF90 Stradale has an all-new interior concept, too. Instead of separate screens, everything is focused on a brand new 16-inch HD cluster. It is a world-first curved, shaped screen, and Ferrari has built in entirely new navigation and infotainment systems. Modern customers are demanding this, said Camilleri; “The speed of change does not frighten us”.

The premium cabin is a step on from every current Ferrari, and this style will be seen in every new model going forward, said Camilleri. “This is the second of five new cars we are revealing in 2019,” he added. “It’s an unprecedented launch cycle that will give us our widest, most complete range ever.”

Organic and futuristic

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale

Ferrari design chief Flavio Manzoni’s in-house team at the Ferrari Styling centre has created the new supercar. “It is an organic shape, to portray its top performance and futuristic view. We call it part-race car, part-spaceship.”

The defining feature is the cabin, designed to look like the canopy of an aircraft. Front and rear wheelarches are “like powerful muscles” and the flying buttresses at the rear “underline the feeling of a spaceship”.

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale

“The rear is the most intriguing aspect,” said Manzoni. “The fender muscles sit on the rear wheels, to give it real stance” which is accentuated by the car’s width and modern cube-shaped tail lamps. The sharply-cut rear has central tailpipes and an incredibly large and complex diffuser below. It is a dramatic, 3D shape that, stresses Manzoni, “really emphasises the car’s architecture”.

A clever feature is the rear ‘shut-off gurney’ which Ferrari is patenting. In normal use, the aero surfaces sit flush – but in high downforce mode, the centre section (the cut-out around the ‘Ferrari’ script here) lowers, creating “a broad load surface topped by a powerful nolder”.

The lines of the new SF90 Stradale are pure and clean. They are elegant, organic and muscular in just the right places. This is not a ‘noisy’ supercar design, but a calm and classical one.

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale Assetto Fiorano

This active aerodynamic functionality is enhanced in the optional Assetto Fiorano pack, pictured here, with a much larger rear gurney. At 155 mph, it generates nearly 400 kg of downforce. SF90 Stradale Assetto Fiorano models have additional carbon fibre features, taking 30 kg out the car’s kerbweight (it weighs just under 1,600 kg) and the central stripe is joined by a painted nose section.

Gate expectations

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale

Ferrari hasn’t forgotten its heritage with the SF90 Stradale: the ‘open gate’ gearshift is back. Well, sort of: instead of buttons, the shift is controlled by three toggles that sit in a metal ‘gate’. Here, you can also just see pictured the ultra-slim new Ferrari key, shaped like a yellow Ferrari bonnet badge. This is something else that’s coming to all future models.

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale

The steering wheel is all-new. It has touch-sensitive controls and 80 percent of the SF90 Stradale’s functionality is operated without hands leaving the wheel. Ferrari also now fits a head-up display, and this new HMI (human-machine interface) has been developed from racetrack logic that Ferrari is calling EOTR-HOTS: Eyes On The Road, Hands On The Steering (wheel).

Blown away

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale Assetto Fiorano

A new LED daylight signature comprises three vertical outboard lines. Also note the bulging fenders, the carefully integrated aerodynamics and intriguing new alloy wheels, which have tiny shaped fins between the spokes that create downforce. The engineers call them ‘blown’ alloys.

Daddy shark

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale

The Ferrari SF90 Stradale has a striking ‘shark nose’ effect at the front. “There’s lots of tension at the front, to create a ‘slingshot effect’” said Manzoni. “The cabin sits centrally within the car, conveying the power of the car.” This aspect also underlines the simplicity of Ferrari’s new range-topping model.

Faster around Fiorano

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale

And how fast is it? Bragging facts will come soon, but Ferrari did reveal one stat – against its benchmark, the LaFerrari, it draws a full 64 metres ahead of the previous halo car after just one single lap of its Fiorano test track. “Standing still is not an option,” said Camilleri.

With the new SF90 Stradale, Ferrari may just have created an entirely new supercar benchmark that rivals may struggle to now match. “We at Ferrari have chosen to face the future by putting ourselves in the driving seat and challenging change our way.” And what a way.

The most powerful Ferraris ever made

The 1,000hp SF90 Stradale has claimed the title of most powerful road-going Ferrari from the LaFerrari of 2013. To mark the occasion, we’ve rounded up the mightiest production prancing horses, all with 600hp or more. Fasten your seatbelts…

Ferrari Portofino

The drop-top Portofino, which replaced the California T, is an ‘entry-level’ Ferrari that still packs 600hp. The remainder of the range exists in the high-performance hinterland between here and the 1,000hp Ferrari SF90 Stradale.

Ferrari 458 Speciale

The 605hp 458 Speciale dragged the mid-engined Berlinetta kicking (and most definitely screaming) into the 600hp club. The last naturally-aspirated Ferrari V8, it was a glorious 9,000rpm send-off – succeeded by the twin-turbo 488 GTB. Just 998 Speciales were produced, including the open Aperta version.

Ferrari GTC4Lusso T

If a V12 feels unnecessary in your family Ferrari, the GTC4Lusso T is the cheaper, slightly softer alternative to the full-fat Lusso further up the list. It’s still no slouch, with 610hp going to the rear wheels.

Ferrari 599 GTB

The fruits of the Enzo project (spoiler alert: it’s next in this list) were still being sown four years after its debut. Complete with the same God-summoning soundtrack, the 599 debuted in 2006, with 620hp from its 6.0-litre V12.

Ferrari Enzo

The fact that the Enzo pre-dates any subsequent car here by eight years or more shows just what a hammer-blow its 660hp V12 was in 2002. Its performance was as dramatic as its angular aesthetic. In the history of Ferrari, the Enzo is doubly significant, as its 6.0-litre F140 (B) engine was the basis for all subsequent Ferrari V12s – including those in the GTC4Lusso and 812 Superfast.

Ferrari FF

The FF was a controversial beast upon its arrival. While the 612 Scaglietti it replaced wasn’t a classic beauty, was a four-wheel-drive shooting brake a step too far? Most concerns were quashed as soon as it fired up. A guttural V12 soundtrack borrowed from the GTO turned those raised eyebrows into slackened jaws. With 660hp, its output matches the Enzo. How’s that for nine years of progress?

Ferrari 488 GTB

When the 488 GTB arrived in 2015, it brought turbos and lots of torque. With 670hp, it matched the 599 GTO of five years before, and with a 3.9-litre engine. A 488 Spider was available, too.

Ferrari 599 GTO

The GTO was a watershed moment for production Ferraris when it arrived in 2010. Away went the gravelly snarl that harked back to the Enzo. In its place came a howl more akin to a 1990s Ferrari F1 car. Little did we know that exotic shriek would become the signature sound of Ferrari V12s.

Ferrari GTC4Lusso

Ferrari’s most relaxed product, a four-seat GT car, still has an Enzo-baiting 680hp V12. Even though power goes to all four wheels, it will break traction with ease. A formidable cross-continental tourer.

Ferrari 488 Pista

When Ferrari debuted its twin-turbo V8, it claimed there was potential for horsepower figures into the 700s. The track-prepped 488 Pista realised that potential with a McLaren-matching 720hp. The Pista Spider offers open-air thrills to match the Pista’s track-prepped skills.

Ferrari F8 Tributo

With the introduction of the F8 Tributo, the mainstream mid-engined Berlinetta is officially a 700hp+ car. Yes, the Pista wasn’t technically limited, but it’s not exactly a series-production car either. The new F8 offers Pista-level power in standard showroom spec.

Ferrari F12 Berlinetta

The F12 Berlinetta caused quite a stir when it arrived back in 2012. Here was a car that anyone could buy, that wasn’t limited, that could comfortably trundle down the shops, and that had 740hp on tap. This figure eclipsed the hypercars of just a few years before, trouncing the million-pound Pagani Huayra and carbon-tubbed Lamborghini Aventador. ‘Is this too much?’, we all asked at the time. Ferrari didn’t seem to think so…

Ferrari F12 TdF

The final F12 was the stupendous TdF. Because what the F12 needed was more power, right? The 780hp TdF had rear-wheel-steering for the first time in a Ferrari, yet it was famously skittish on a damp road.

Ferrari 812 Superfast

The Superfast does what it says on the tin; its 6.5-litre V12 makes a round 800hp. It’s a GT at heart, though, so it packs a few more luxuries and a decent boot, weighing a few hundred kilograms more than cars further up this list.

Ferrari LaFerrari

When Ferrari unveils a new flagship, the world stands still. Nothing changed with the near-1,000hp LaFerrari back in 2013, although there were a few giggles at that name. A 2.4-second 0-62mph time was claimed, with a top speed of 217mph. It generates 963hp via a 6.3-litre V12 mated to a hybrid powertrain. It’s this technology that the new car advances still further in the pursuit of power.

Ferrari LaFerrari Aperta

The open-topped version of Ferrari’s flagship for the 2010s, the LaFerrari Aperta was actually rather a late arrival: three years after the coupe in 2016. We can’t argue with wanting to get closer to those 963 horses (of which 800 come from the V12). It’s more than twice as rare as the coupe, too, with just 210 produced.

Ferrari SF90 Stradale

After three generations, Ferrari’s latest hypercar swaps a V12 for a 4.0-litre turbocharged V8 with 780hp. Not since the F40 has the head of the Maranello stable had eight cylinders instead of 12. Nevertheless, the addition of three electric motors makes for 1,000hp in total – and comfortably the most powerful Ferrari on the road. With electric power to the front wheels making it all-wheel-drive, Ferrari’s first 4WD supercar is consummately rapid. Full figures haven’t been published yet, but Ferrari claims 0-62mph in 2.5 seconds and 0-124mph in 6.7 seconds – quicker than a McLaren Senna.

Ferrari SF90 Stradale

The cabin of the SF90 brings a welcome breath of fresh air to Ferrari interiors. A re-designed wheel controls 80 percent of cabin functionality. That, along with the world-first curved, shaped, 16-inch fully digital dashboard joins what is overall a more slick interior design. This sets the precedent for all future Ferrari cabins, so we’re told.

Ferrari SF90 Stradale

It’s not quite a LaFerrari successor, though. Even though it finishes 64 metres ahead of that car over a single lap of Fiorano. The SF90 will cost less than a LaFerrari, but more than an 812 Superfast. We anticipate a six-figure price beginning with a ‘5’ in the UK, for what we reckon is one of Ferrari’s best-looking supercars of the last decade.

Last rear-drive BMW M140i bows out for just £449 upfront

BMW 1 Series deals

As the new BMW 1 Series makes its debut, dealers will be looking to shift stock of the outgoing model. And that means some excellent deals.

The new car swaps a rear-wheel-drive platform for either front-wheel drive or xDrive all-wheel drive. That makes the distinctive outgoing car an even more tantalising prospect, especially for keen drivers.

BMW 1 Series deals

Whether you’re in 118i territory, or after the M140i hot hatch, there’s likely a bargain for you. Starting with the hero car, you can get one for less than £500 down…

On BMW’s Select PCP program, we saw a deal for the M140i Shadow Edition, with the upgrade package paid for by BMW. It only requires a three-figure deposit – or, to be exact, one month’s payment of £449. There’s a deposit contribution from BMW of £7,510.

Admittedly, £449 a month for four years is still significant, but if you’re in the market to get something quick, and do so quickly, you can’t argue with that upfront cost.BMW 1 Series deals

Compare that to the also good-value 118i M-Sport Shadow Edition deal, upgrade again courtesy of BMW, that you pay a £4,849 deposit for.

BMW basically goes halves on the deposit, contributing another £4,726. And while that’s still adecent deal, you can’t get away from that M140i steal.

If you want a classic rear-wheel-drive 1er, though, you’d better act fast.

Classic car prices are stable, says German bank

BMW 507

Classic car prices remained stable in 2018, according to a German bank.

Südwestbank’s classic car index (OTX) revealed a market that grew 0.49 percent last year, which follows an increase of 0.41 percent in 2017.

The bank launched the OTX in 2010 to compare the performance of South German classic cars with other forms of investment. The index includes 20 classics built by manufacturers in Baden-Wurttemberg, Bavaria and southern Hesse.

Demand for historic vehicles remains high, says the bank, and they are still regarded as a stable investment when compared with equities and government bonds.

Jens Berner, classic car expert at Südwestbank, said: “After the slight upward trend in 2016, the prices of most old-timers, listed in the classic car index of the Südwestbank, have changed little in the last two years. There were only noticeable price changes for just a few models.

One such model is the Porsche 356C 1600 C Coupe, which, after a strong increase in recent years, showed a decline in 2018. Meanwhile, the Mercedes-Benz 190 SL (W121) and 230 SL (W113) both saw significant increases from 2017 to 2018.

But the BMW 507 is the star performer, with values up 812.70 percent since 2005.

Recognising a fake

Mercedes 230 SL

Berner is quick to warn potential investors that the biggest returns are to be found at the top end of the market.

“From a return point of view, the purchase of a classic car only makes sense from a price of around 100,000 euros. So the experts of the Südwestbank advise to invest in car classics only as a mixture to the total assets. This share should not exceed five to 10 percent of the assets.

“In addition, the appraisal, annual taxes, insurance, garage rent, maintenance and repairs will be added once more.

“The Südwestbank recommends interested parties to include a vintage car expert on their purchase. A layman can not necessarily recognise a fake at first glance.”

Going green: Porsche will only use sustainable suppliers

Sustainability Porsche

‘Sustainability is non-negotiable’, says Porsche, which has promised to source all its parts from sustainable suppliers.

Porsche bought €9.5 billion (£8.4 billion) of parts last year, from a total of 7,654 suppliers. An ’S’ rating for sustainability will be core to its awarding of supply contracts from July 2019. 

Other Volkswagen Group brands will also source parts from suppliers with an ’S’ rating, after Porsche blazes the trail. The rating takes environmental, social and compliance issues into consideration.

That means a cleaner conscience for Porsche, along with less likelihood of regulatory penalties being levied against suppliers.

Sustainability Porsche

“This enables us to elevate the issue of sustainability in procurement to the same level as the factors of quality, cost and punctual logistics,” said Uwe-Karsten Städter of Porsche AG.

“Sustainability is a matter of course for us. Our company founder Ferry Porsche already often reflected on what could be done to reduce the burden on the environment. That is why he anchored responsible behaviour firmly in the company’s philosophy. Thanks to the ‘S’ rating, our sustainable actions will also have an impact on our value chain.”