2019 Volkswagen USA Enthusiast Concept Fleet

Volkswagen unveils fleet of concept cars for U.S. enthusiasts

2019 Volkswagen USA Enthusiast Concept FleetSummer is almost here and, for thousands of Volkswagen fans across America, that means the chance to show off their cars at major events.

Volkswagen of America makes a substantial commitment to attending the biggest shows, and will be bringing a fleet of seven production-based concept cars on tour this year.

From hot hatchbacks to SUVs, we have taken a look at the collection of vehicles VeeDub fans should keep a look out for this show season.

VW Jetta GLI Super Touring Concept

2019 Volkswagen USA Enthusiast Concept FleetThe new Jetta GLI caused a storm when it launched at the Chicago Auto Show earlier this year. It is the most powerful production GLI ever, producing 228 horsepower and 258lb-ft of torque from its 2.0-litre TSI engine.

With 1990s culture bang on trend at the moment, it seems fitting that VW has opted to mimic the heyday of touring car racing with the GLI Super Touring Concept. K&W coilover suspension helps slam it to the ground, with a new spoiler, bigger brakes, and performance exhaust also added.

A major talking point is the set of brand-new 19-inch Fifteen52 alloy wheels, which are making their American debut attached to this Jetta GLI Autobahn.

VW GTI Rabbit Confetti Concept

2019 Volkswagen USA Enthusiast Concept FleetVolkswagen released the Rabbit Edition of the GTI hot hatch for the 2019 model year, and that car serves as the base for this concept.

A special vinyl wrap sees Rabbit logos in multiple hues sprinkled, like confetti, across the bodywork of the GTI. VW also notes that the wrap contains a ‘hidden surprise’ for fans to try and find.

H&R lowering springs help give the Rabbit Confetti Concept an aggressive stance on the 19-inch Rotiform RSE wheels. The latter wear retro-influenced Aerodisk covers, whilst roof bars and a Thule basket tick off more scene points.

VW Golf Alltrack Combi Concept

2019 Volkswagen USA Enthusiast Concept FleetUsing the Alltrack wagon will undoubtedly endear the Combi Concept with VW enthusiasts. But the Volkswagen Technical Service Center in Auburn Hills, Michigan has gone even further with a mixture of different parts.

A front bumper from a Golf GTE meets a rear spoiler from a GTI Rabbit Edition. The short-throw shifter comes from a diesel Golf GTD, whilst H&R supply the lowering springs.

Most noticeable are the continuing theme of the 1990s-inspired retro graphics which stand out against the dark paintwork. The Volkswagen roof bars also incorporate an LED light bar, and support a Thule cargo box.

VW Tiguan Adventure Concept

2019 Volkswagen USA Enthusiast Concept FleetUnlike most of the other vehicles in the 2019 Concept collection, the Tiguan Adventure features raised, rather than lowered, suspension.

Built in collaboration with suspension manufacturer H&R, this SUV wears Adventure Raising Springs and a set of 18-inch Rotiform wheels mounted with all-terrain rubber.

Volkswagen has also gone to town with official accessories, including Monster Mats, rear protection plates, side steps, and roof bars carrying a Kayak.

VW Golf R Spektrum Concept

2019 Volkswagen USA Enthusiast Concept FleetFor the 2019 model year, Volkswagen now offers the potent Golf R hot hatch in a range of custom paint choices as part of the Spektrum package.

A total of 40 different paint options form part of the Spektrum offering, with many of them heritage hues from Volkswagen’s back catalogue of greatest hits.

VW has painted this Golf R in classic Ginster Yellow, and it also features the inevitable H&R lowering springs. A set of 20-inch Vossen Hybrid Forged HF-1 wheels add some contrast, along with special decals running along the side sills.

VW Atlas Basecamp Concept

2019 Volkswagen USA Enthusiast Concept FleetThe substantial three-row Atlas SUV has proven to be a popular product for Volkswagen, with the plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee churning out big numbers of them.

However, this concept is the work of Alex Earle, Exterior Design Manager at the Volkswagen Design Center California, who wanted to build the best Atlas for extreme mountain biking.

Previously seen at the New York International Auto Show, the Basecamp Concept wears 17-inch Fifteen52 alloy wheels, a custom body kit from Air Designs, and an H&R lift kit with coilover suspension.

VW Arteon R-Line SEMA Concept

2019 Volkswagen USA Enthusiast Concept FleetFinally, Volkswagen is also taking the modified Arteon four-door coupe from the 2018 SEMA Show on the road. Developed with Vossen wheels, a set of 21-inch Vossen Forged M-X4T wheels are the most significant part of the upgrades.

The Pure White paint wears a satin protection film, and the Arteon also features H&R Ultra Low coilover suspension to drop it closer to the ground by 3 inches. A big brake kit and custom body kit was added after the SEMA event.

Volkswagen fans wanting to check out the seven cars in more detail should head to one of these eight events throughout the summer of 2019:

  • SOWO: The European Experience | Savannah, GA | May 18-19
  • Americas Rallycross | Madison, IL | July 13-14
  • Waterfest | Atco, NJ | July 21-22
  • Wolfsgart | Essex Junction, VT | Aug. 4-5
  • VAG Fair | York, PA | Aug. 4-5
  • SoCal Big Euro | San Diego, CA | Sept. 1
  • Pacific Waterland | Woodburn, OR | Sept. 9
  • Americas Rallycross | Austin, TX | Sep. 28
Mecum Indy 2019 Shelby Cobra Juliano Collection

Shelby Cobra trio generate amazing $6.4 million total at auction

Mecum Indy 2019 Shelby Cobra Juliano CollectionThree Shelby Cobras at the Mecum Auctions Indy 2019 sale have amassed an incredible combined total of $6.4 million (£4.95 million) from crossing the block.

Sold as part of the Steven Juliano Estate Collection, the trio include an early 1964 289 Roadster, along with a later 427 Cobra, and an ultra-rare S/C (Semi-Competition) car from 1967.

The Cobra collective proved to be a star on the fourth day of sales at the packed Indy sale. This was even on an auction listing which included other amazing muscle cars and exemplary classic machinery.

1967 Shelby 427 S/C Cobra Roadster – $2.7m

Mecum Indy 2019 Shelby Cobra Juliano CollectionUndoubtedly the star of the Steven Juliano Collection, this particular 1967 Cobra is just one of 29 S/C Roadsters produced by the Shelby factory.

Widely regarded as the ultimate Shelby Cobra, S/C cars featured the 427-cubic inch V-8 engine and had been intended to homologate the car for racing use. However, FIA inspectors were unhappy with the number of cars built, and denied it competition approval.

As a result, fewer than 30 Cobras were released onto the streets, still wearing the same upgrades which had been intended for race use. This included flared fenders, side exhausts, and an external filler for the race-spec fuel tank.

Mecum Indy 2019 Shelby Cobra Juliano CollectionThis particular S/C was first purchased by the owner of a Boston, Massachusetts Ford dealership in October 1966.

Despite having had five owners from new, and the unyielding temptation to enjoy the estimated 500+ horsepower of the FE engine, this car has amassed just 10,760 miles from new.

Juliano had spent time ensuring the car was returned to original specification, leaving it as one of the most authentic 427 S/C Cobras in existence. His work justifies the $2.7m (£2.1m) paid.

1966 Shelby 427 Cobra Roadster – $2.2m

Mecum Indy 2019 Shelby Cobra Juliano CollectionMildly less terrifying than the S/C model, but still able to scare and delight, Steven Juliano’s ‘Street Cobra’ is also regarded as one of the purest examples.

Unlike later cars, which used the Police Interceptor 428-cubic inch V-8 motor, this car has the desirable 427 block, along with dual quad carburettors and period-correct lights.

Juliano had the Silver Mink paintwork restored with painstaking accuracy, whilst this car even retained the original Shelby window sticker, and was updated with Shelby 1966 NOS maintenance parts where possible.

Mecum Indy 2019 Shelby Cobra Juliano CollectionBeing able to return the car to such condition is impressive, given that the Cobra changed hands numerous times before being acquired by Juliano.

In fact, CSX3173 had eight documented owners between 1966 and 1987, and spent three decades in Japan before Juliano finally bought the car in 2010.

Whether the previous owners quickly found themselves too scared of the performance offered by the 427 Cobra, or just wanted to make quick money, is unknown. But we are sure the new owner will be very pleased with their $2.2m (£1.62m) car, and feel that the efforts by Steven Juliano justify the price.

1964 Shelby 298 Cobra Roadster – $1.6m

Mecum Indy 2019 Shelby Cobra Juliano CollectionWhilst it may be the most unassuming of the three Cobras sold at the Indy event to look at, Lot F132 has the claim of truly being one-of-one ever created in this specification.

The unique status comes from the existing as the only 1964 Shelby Cobra Roadster to be built with a Stage III 289-cubic inch V-8 engine. Usually reserved for competition usage, this meant four Weber downdraft carburettors, adding an additional 50 horsepower to proceedings.

This car was also loaded with optional extras, including polished American Racing magnesium wheels and a hood scoop, making it one of the most expensive 289 Cobras made.

Mecum Indy 2019 Shelby Cobra Juliano CollectionWhilst this car left the factory in Princess Blue, the first owner even decided to have the car returned to Shelby in order to be repainted in the bright Rangoon Red hue.

Purchased by a new owner in 1972, the car stayed with them until 2011, when it became the final car to undergo Juliano’s extensive restoration process.

Juliano had recognised the car from various Cobra books, and spent some four years taking it back to original condition. Tragically, the car was completed just weeks before his death, but the $1.6m (£1.23m) Cobra is a fitting tribute to his life and car collecting efforts.

With over 2,000 cars for sale, the Mecum Indy 2019 sale continues until Sunday May 19th, and also includes motorcycles and automobilia.

Bring a Trailer 25 car auction May 2019

Time is running out to bid on this eclectic collection of 25 vehicles

Bring a Trailer 25 car auction May 2019American auction website Bring a Trailer is currently playing host to the sale of a rather intriguing collection of cars and trucks.

The seller has acquired many of the cars through the site previously, but has decided to liquidate his assets in one fell swoop.

With all cars being sold with no reserve, this really is a case of everything must go.

Bring a Trailer 25 car auction May 2019Almost every category of popular and niche automotive collecting trends are represented, with the variety of vehicles ranging from the 1940s right through to the modern age.

Station wagons have clearly been a particular pleasure of the anonymous collector, with estate models accounting for five of the vehicles on sale. Trucks, SUVs, and classic sports cars are also part of the mix.

We’ve taken a look at just some of the cars up for grabs before the digital hammer falls on Thursday May 16th.

1991 Ferrari 348 TB

Bring a Trailer 25 car auction May 2019Don’t be fooled into thinking this is some Pontiac Fiero-derived replica. No, there is a genuine mid-engined V-8 Ferrari up for grabs in this auction.

Although often overshadowed by the F355 which replaced it, the 348 does at least have the claim to being one of the final cars developed under the scrutiny of company founder Enzo Ferrari.

Originally delivered to Switzerland, this car made it to the USA in 2016, after a Canadian detour. All service records are present, and it even has an aftermarket Tubi exhaust to help the 300 horsepower engine sound even sweeter.

1957 Chevrolet 3100 Custom Pickup

Bring a Trailer 25 car auction May 2019Even more eye catching than the Ferrari is this extensively modified Chevrolet pickup truck, finished in bright orange.

The truck underwent major changes between 2000 and 2005, with the frame powder coated and a 302-cubic inch V-8 engine from a 1969 Camaro Z/28 added under the hood.

With orange highlights throughout the interior, and even matching wheels, you’ll certainly need to be bold for this tangerine dream.

2005 Mercedes-Benz E55 AMG Wagon

Bring a Trailer 25 car auction May 2019From a time when performance Mercedes-Benz products still retained a substantial degree of subtlety is this rapid load-lugger.

According to Bring a Trailer, this is just one of 193 examples of the W211 E55 wagon sold in the United States. Power comes from a 5.4-liter supercharged V-8 engine, producing 469 horsepower and 516lb-ft of torque. Top speed is limited to 155mph, with the 0-60mph sprint taking less than 4.5 seconds.

The standard air suspension was serviced in 2018, with new rear shocks fitted and the ride height recalibrated. Folding third-row rear seats mean you can easily justify buying this E55 as a practical family station wagon.

1953 Jaguar XK120 Roadster

Bring a Trailer 25 car auction May 2019Male supermodel David Gandy has recently taken delivery of a Jaguar XK120, which was custom built to his exacting specifications. However, if you happen not to be a millionaire underwear model, then this Jag may be more attainable.

This particular car is said to have been owned by the same family from new, all the way until being acquired by the current owner in 2007. The car underwent a full body-off restoration in the 1980s, with substantial maintenance also performed in 2017.

Driving the rear wheels through a four-speed manual gearbox, the 4.2-liter inline-six engine is fed by triple Weber carburettors. When new, the XK120 was responsible for setting a number of speed records, although it looks just as good being driven at a sensible pace.

1967 Chrysler New Yorker

Bring a Trailer 25 car auction May 2019In terms of price per square foot, this giant ‘67 New Yorker could well be the best value piece of real estate for sale in this collection.

The four-door hardtop New Yorker, with its 124-inch wheelbase, is still vast even by modern standards. Even bigger is the 440-cubic inch RB V-8 engine, connected to a three-speed TorqueFlite automatic transmission.

Beneath the Haze Green paintwork, the frame of this New Yorker does show evidence of corrosion. However, the car has undergone regular maintenance in recent years, and appears to be a well-preserved example of how it originally left the factory.

1972 Porsche 911S

Bring a Trailer 25 car auction May 2019No collector car auction in 2019 would be complete without a Porsche 911, and this particular sale does not disappoint.

Both interior and exterior of this 911S have undergone updating in recent years, with the Metallic Silver paintwork renewed in 2016. Seats, door cards and other trim items were refreshed in 2017, with a range of mechanical work also performed.

This 2.4-liter flat-six machine is currently the car with the highest bids from the collection of 25 vehicles, and causing some debate amongst commentators about the origins of the 915 five-speed manual gearbox.

With no reserve this Porsche, and all the other 24 vehicles, will sell come Thursday. We will just have to wait and see which one sparks the biggest bidding war.

Why Volkswagen is already planning the second life for its electric car batteries

vw electric car batteries

The battery is one of the most expensive parts on an electric car, but what do you do with it when the vehicle reaches the end of its life? Volkswagen has the answer.

Doing nothing is not a solution, but Volkswagen will adopt a two-pronged strategy: re-use and recycle.

While an older lithium-ion battery that’s been in use for a decade may not be suitable for powering a vehicle, it could still have its uses. Amazingly, the battery pack in the 2019 e-Golf can store as much energy as a typical household consumes in one day.

Which is why Volkswagen intends to use the battery packs from its electric vehicles in a network of portable recharging stations. Designed to hold up to 360 kilowatt-hours of energy, these stations can charge up to four vehicles at a time.

And because they’re portable enough to be used in hard-to-charge locations, they can ‘pop-up’ at music festivals, public events and car shows. Clever stuff.

At some point, a battery will lose its ability to store energy, which is where Volkswagen’s component plant in Salzgitter, Germany, will be called into action. From next year, the facility will have the capacity to recycle approximately 1,200 tons of EV batteries every year – that’s around 3,000 vehicles.

The company wants to recycle 97 percent of the raw materials in the battery packs, up from the present 53 percent and more than the 72 percent expected at the Salzgitter plant.

Shredded batteries

electric car batteries shredded

A special shredder will separate the components into a black powder containing the valuable raw materials cobalt, lithium, manganese and nickel. Mining these materials is both bad for the environment and hugely expensive, so using them again is a win-win.

Such strategies are required to cope with the expected rise in demand for electric vehicles. Volkswagen expects to be building a million EVs by 2025, each one with an expected lifespan of 10 to 15 years.

Ex-Stirling Moss Mercedes-Benz 500 SL could be yours

Stirling Moss Mercedes 500SL

You could own a Mercedes-Benz 500 SL once driven by one of Britain’s most celebrated motor racing talents: Sir Stirling Moss. It’ll hit the block at H&H Classics’ auction on June 19 at Duxford.

Famous for his incredible 1955 Mille Miglia drive in a Mercedes 300 SLR, Moss clearly preferred something more cosseting in later life. This now-classic 500 SL was ordered new by ‘Mr Motor Racing’ to his exact specification.

Stirling Moss Mercedes 500SL

Registered ‘7SM’, a Mercedes SL driven by Sir Stirling Moss could only be coloured silver. The contrasting dark blue soft-top and interior has aged well, although the glossy wood cabin trim does date it somewhat. The car comes with a hard-top, too. It currently has 62,000 miles on the clock.

Sir Stirling’s time with the SL is well-documented, which is more than can be said for many ‘day-to-day’ cars that claim legendary provenance.

Stirling Moss Mercedes 500SL

Among pictures of the car with Sir Stirling in the book Great Drives in the Lakes and Dales is a personal story from H&H Classics’ own Damian Jones.

He remembers being in a car in London with his father, and being cut up by Sir Stirling in the very same 500 SL. Contrary to the grump you might expect, his Dad allegedly remarked: “One can’t object to being cut up by Stirling Moss!”

Stirling Moss Mercedes 500SL

The 500 SL, with an all-new 330hp quad-cam 5.0-litre V8, was the flagship of the SL range at the time. AMG-fettled examples with monstrous V8s and V12s were still a few years away.

To top it off, this storied classic is up for auction with no reserve

New m52 Volkswagen performance tuning firm

New tuning company has sights on hot Volkswagen scene

New m52 Volkswagen performance tuning firmA new collaboration between two car modification companies will bring new options to the Volkswagen tuning scene.

Performance parts and engine upgrade specialist Mountune has formed a new company, partnering with alloy wheel manufacturer Fifteen52, to offer products on both sides of the Atlantic.

The new M52 brand will initially focus on the latest versions of the Volkswagen Golf R and GTI.

Forging new empires

New m52 Volkswagen performance tuning firmMountune re-established itself as a major player in the aftermarket  sector with its range of products for the Mk6 Ford Fiesta ST in 2008.

However, it was the global success of the Mk7 Fiesta ST, and the officially-endorsed Mountune upgrades for it, that pushed the company to even greater recognition.

Mountune Performance parts are now sold by Ford dealerships, allowing owners the ability to keep their original manufacturer warranty.

Fifteen52 began in 1996, and its range of monoblock alloy wheels become iconic via their association with motorsport. Ken Block has famously used Fifteen52 rims on many of his Hoonigan projects.

Talkin’ about Dub

New m52 Volkswagen performance tuning firmThe new M52 brand will sell performance parts, along with alloy wheel packages, designed to fit the Mk7 Golf R and GTI.

Initial offerings include ECU upgrades, which boost the output of the turbocharged Golf R to a considerable 355hp and 369lb ft of torque. GTI fans can also see power increased to 306hp and 350lb ft, meaning sizeable gains over stock.

Lowering springs for the suspension, upgraded brakes, billet engine bay parts, and even a custom X3 induction system, are also available to order from the M52 online shop.

Fifteen52 has also created two brand-new 19-inch alloy wheel designs, inspired by the Super Touring motorsport era from the 1990s. Customers can pre-order the new rim designs now, with the first deliveries expected in the coming months.

Loyalty to the badge

New m52 Volkswagen performance tuning firmAlongside performance parts and wheels, M52 will also offer a range of branded merchandise and accessories. In the sometimes heated world of the Volkswagen tuning scene, showing your allegiances is important.

Alec Pell-Johnson, director of Mountune, commented that the new collaboration is “an exciting chapter in our history” as the M52 brand was launched. Matt Croke, owner of Fifteen52, also added that: “This will be an epic brand in the performance aftermarket and offer something new to the VW community”.

The two companies first worked together on a special edition of the Volkswagen Golf GTI for the 2017 SEMA tuning show. Billed as a homage to the 1986 Group A World Rally Championship Golf GTI, the show car won considerable praise at the industry event.

Arrows Classic Line Mercedes Benz W124

This Japanese company is brilliantly updating classic Mercedes

Arrows Classic Line Mercedes Benz W124

Improving modern classic cars has become big business, with companies such as Singer and Redux demonstrating the possibilities.

However, one Japanese firm is taking a rather different approach, instead returning the W124 and S124 series of the Mercedes-Benz E-Class back to its purest form.

Kanagawa-based Arrows specialises extensively in this particular E-Class model, which was produced from 1984 through to 1996.

Arrows Classic Line Mercedes Benz W124It is the earliest cars which Arrows takes inspiration from, and looks to restore later versions of the W124 and S124 E-Class back to how the very first examples left the production line.

On the outside, that means a complete respray in one of three original Mercedes-Benz colours. Customers can choose from ‘Pueblo Beige’, ‘Rodeo Gray’, and also ‘Light Ivory’ hues.

The latter will be familiar to anyone who has taken a ride in a German taxi, and immediately reinforces the aim of Arrows to make these cars look as subtle as possible.

Arrows Classic Line Mercedes Benz W124Any large alloy wheels are binned, with a set of 15-inch steel wheels bolted in place instead, and combined with genuine Mercedes-Benz wheel trims.

Arrows does not delve into upgrading the engine for more performance. But buyers are able to choose from donor cars with a 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine, or 3.0 and 3.2-litre six-cylinder units depending on preference.

The interior also sees a minimalist overhaul, adding the distinctive check pattern cloth trim to the seats and door cards. Arrows sources the material from a German manufacturer, keeping it as close to the original as possible.

Arrows Classic Line Mercedes Benz W124Wood trim is removed from the interior as well, taking the Classic Line back to the most basic example of the W124 with plain black plastic used instead.

Even the steering wheel is swapped out, and replaced with a simple earlier version without an airbag. Although it is larger in diameter, Arrows believes that the thinner rim makes for a better driving experience.

The estate version of the E-Class Classic Line does retain the extra seats in the boot, with a roof rack available to be added as an option. Who needs a seven-seater SUV when you can have a beige Mercedes from the 1980s?

Arrows Classic Line Mercedes Benz W124For those who do want off-road ability, Arrows is also able to apply the Classic Line treatment to the venerable Mercedes G-Wagen.

Prices for the E-Class Classic Line transformation begin at ¥2,000,000 (£14,000) where the owner supplies an existing vehicle. Asking Arrows to source a donor vehicle pushes the starting price to ¥3,500,000 (£24,000) instead.

That may seem a lot for a simple Mercedes-Benz, even if W124 Mercs are predicted to increase in value. However, the work by Arrows serves as a refreshing riposte to never ending cycle of horsepower and exterior chintz on modern cars.

Jaguar Classic builds David Gandy a bespoke XK120

David Gandy Jaguar XK120

David Gandy is quite a good looking chap. He also looks half-decent in a pair of M&S undies. And now, he’s has taken delivery of a bespoke Jaguar XK120.

Life must be pretty tough for the male model.

Having taken part in the Mille Miglia, Gandy commissioned Jaguar Classic to source and restore an XK120 for use in classic motorsport events. The result is a specification inspired by the original XK120 Lightweight.

The project started with the sourcing of a 1954 base car from California and finished after 11 months and 2,700 hours. Everything was completed at Jaguar Classic’s Classic Works facility in Warwickshire.

Jaguar XK120 David Gandy

To make it race-ready, the team boosted the performance of the 3.4-litre straight-six engine from 180hp to 225hp and added a new exhaust system with dual pipes. Further upgrades include a racing-style four-speed gearbox, disc brakes with four-pot calipers at the front, and fully adjustable dampers.

Gandy – who is worth an estimated £12.5 million – has made a living out of looking good and once said that “anyone can have a body like mine, but it’s hard work”. Needless to say, the XK120’s body had to live up to Gandy’s high standards.

Which is why the bespoke XK120 is finished in solid black, made up of 13 litres and four coats of paint.  Also note the use of a flip-top fuel cap, plus twin aero screens, a tip of the hat to the XK120 Lightweight.

Jaguar Classic XK120 David Gandy

Inside, Jaguar Classic removed one of the batteries behind the driver’s seat to free up space for Gandy’s 6ft 2inch frame, while a smaller steering wheel has been used to free up legroom. The seats are finished in Aged Saddle tan leather with a bespoke lattice design.

David Gandy, said: “Having driven a Jaguar XK120 at the Mille Miglia in 2013 and 2014, I knew that I wanted to own one of these incredibly special cars. The team at Jaguar Classic have done such a remarkable job engineering this car and executing everything that I asked for and it was amazing to have such an in-depth involvement in its creation.”

Calum McKechnie, head of Jaguar Classic, said: “This unique XK120 showcases the expertise, skill and craftmanship that Jaguar Classic makes available for all of its customers. Not only were we able to bring this iconic sports car back to life mechanically, but the attention to detail and the bespoke design of the interior sets David’s car apart.”

2019 Ford Performance-Mustang Supercar Wins Again in Perth

Australian Ford Mustang Supercar racer just can’t stop winning

2019 Ford Performance-Mustang Supercar Wins Again in PerthFord Performance had high hopes for the all-new V8 Mustang in its debut season of the Virgin Australian Supercars Championship.

However, we’re not sure even Ford could have predicted the level of dominance from the Supercar ‘Stang so far.

Of the 12 races held, Ford Mustang GTs have topped the podium an incredible 11 times. The 2018 Drivers’ Championship winner Scott McLaughlin has taken eight of those wins alone, and he looks set to carry on doing the same.

The latest rounds in Perth, Western Australia, saw the DJR Penske Shell V-Power Racing Mustangs take two more victories beneath the floodlights.

Racing at night seemingly had no effect the Mustang’s performance, with the Fords taking a commanding 1-2-3 result in the first race of the weekend.

Fabian Coulthard led home the pack, with DJR Penske teammate McLaughlin in second place. Tickford Racing’s Chaz Mostert completed the race 11 podium.

2019 Ford Performance-Mustang Supercar Wins Again in PerthRace 12 saw Scott McLaughlin re-establish his dominance, taking another win to increase his career total to 33 victories, and extending his lead in the 2019 Drivers’ Championship fight.

Predicting a Mustang frenzy at the Western Australia rounds should have been easy, given that McLaughlin secured pole position for both races. He also managed to set a new lap record around the Perth circuit in the process.

However, not everyone is pleased with the Blue Oval’s success in 2019, with the technical department of the Australian Supercars Championship requiring Ford teams to make changes to the Mustang.

2019 Ford Performance-Mustang Supercar Wins Again in PerthAhead of the two Perth races, those teams fielding the Mustang were told to alter the size of the rear-wing endplates, along with making other mandatory aerodynamic tweaks.

This was intended to keep the racing in the Supercars Championship as close as possible, and ensure even parity with the rival Holdens and Nissans. But it was a move that seemingly had little effect.

Earlier in the season, changes were also made to the Mustang’s centre of gravity, despite the design of the car having been tested and homologated by series organisers and other rival manufacturers.

2019 Ford Performance-Mustang Supercar Wins Again in PerthMark Rushbrook, global director of motorsport at Ford Performance, commented: “We have worked so hard alongside Shell V-Power Racing and Tickford Racing, so to come to Perth and see Mustang in such competitive form is such a great feeling.”

As the alterations imposed by the Supercars technical team failed to dampen the abilities of the Mustang in Perth, the question will be whether more drastic measures will be necessary.

With 19 races still left in the Australian Supercars calendar, including the legendary Bathurst 1000 endurance event in October, there is time left for further attempts to slow the Mustang down.

Whether on-track, or in the scrutineering office, we can certainly expect the Ford Performance Mustang to keep grabbing headlines Down Under in 2019.

Long-lost Lamborghini from The Italian Job: FOUND

Lamborghini Miura Italian Job

Fifty years after the iconic ‘The Italian Job’ film debuted in cinemas, one of its four-wheeled stars has been tracked down. No, it’s not a Mini, but it is probably worth 20 times as much. It is, of course, the Lamborghini Miura.

Lamborghini has just certified chassis #3586 as the car used in the 1969 film. It’s no understatement to say this is one of the most sought-after cars from the big screen. The search has been on for the better part of five decades.

Lamborghini Miura Italian Job

The car opens the film with a chase down the Great St Bernard Pass, with actor Rossana Brazzi at the wheel. On celluloid, it ends up being destroyed, although the truth was somewhat different.

The car that was crashed was pre-damaged before filming began. The Miura that survives today is an identical example loaned by Lamborghini for the scene, driven by then-employee Enzo Moruzzi. Part of Moruzzi’s job at the time was to deliver cars to important clients. He was consulted as part of the verification process for chassis #3586.

Lamborghini Italian Job

“There was a Miura P400 almost ready on the production line, in the right colour, left-hand drive and with a white leather interior,” recalls Moruzzi.

“It was aesthetically identical to the damaged one and we decided to use it for the film. The only thing worrying us was the elegant white leather seats, given that car had to get back to Sant’Agata in perfect condition. So, I asked for them to be taken out, replacing them with a set of black leather seats that we used for testing.

“The giveaway was the headrests, which on the Miura are attached to the dividing glass between the driver compartment and the engine compartment, which couldn’t be replaced in time. In the film, you can see the original white headrests.”

Lamborghini Italian Job

The car is currently in the ownership of one Fritz Kaiser, a collector from Liechtenstein. The founder of The Classic Car Trust – a website for collectors – he had the car verified by Lamborghini’s Polo Storico heritage department once and for all.

It’s a great result for him, and indeed enthusiasts around the world – especially in the fiftieth anniversary of the film. It’s fortuitous the car has passed through the hands of caring custodians, leading up to Kaiser.

Lamborghini Miura Italian Job