R-Type Continental Races 2016 GT Speed in Charming Family Reunion

Bentley is bringing out the big icons in its back catalog recently for side-by-sides with the current 2016 Continental lineup. Last week, we saw the GT3 and GT3-R road models rendezvous with their iconic 1930 forebearer: the Birkin Blower Le Mans racecar. This week, we trot forward in time to the R-Type Continental of 1952 — the closest direct link to the current car in spirit and execution. This fastback stunner is a magnificent machine for defining its buyer wants and needs, and exceeding all expectations with the eventual product. What were these goals? True sit-up luxury and generous space for four, but world-beating pace as the fastest 2+2 available when it was launched in the early 1950s.  The ethos carries through to today very strongly — sedan-based coupes with so much power, you forget that they are hyperlux cruisers on light throttle.  With the new GT Speed, the evo …

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1998 Volkswagen W12 Roadster Is Best-of-Group Hypercar R&D Exercise

1998 Volkswagen W12 Roadster gif

Part three of the VW W12 saga: the W12 Roadster. Gorgeous and finely resolved, the W12 Roadster finally solved the quadry of the ugly rear engine cover and funky side window issues of the coupes. 1998 Volkswagen W12 Roadster   Recapping the VW W12 concept saga has been extremely perplexing, with numerous mistakes and edits in the first article below. In fact, the yellow W12 SYNCHRO was the first of the three W12 concept cars. This example, designed by ItalDesign Giugiaro, is actually far more thoroughly engineered on a production design level than the final W12 NARDO Coupe in orange. This can be seen in the actual production body panels, which were eliminated in the one-piece shell of the orange record-holder car. Other details are also up to Volkswagen Piech standards, leading one to think the car could actually see showrooms one day soon. More than anything, this 4WD design …

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1997 Volkswagen W12 SYNCHRO Coupe Concept Is Giugiaro Masterpiece

Recapping the VW W12 concept saga has been extremely perplexing, with numerous mistakes and edits in the first article below. In fact, the yellow W12 SYNCHRO was the first of the three W12 concept cars. This example, designed by ItalDesign Giugiaro, is actually far more thoroughly engineered on a production design level than the final W12 NARDO Coupe in orange. This can be seen in the actual production body panels, which were eliminated in the one-piece shell of the orange record-holder car. Other details are also up to Volkswagen Piech standards, leading one to think the car could actually see showrooms one day soon. More than anything, this 4WD design served to introduce the W12 engine in a fabulous way. Secondarily, the project was a critical research phase of what eventually became the Bugatti Veyron.   ItalDesign Volkswagen W12 Syncro The W12 Syncro, introduced at the Tokyo International motor show …

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2001 Volkswagen W12 NARDO Coupe Concept Slams 217MPH Vmax

W12 Coupe gif

The first of three W12 Volkswagen supercars is clearly the least-impressive — both in terms of its design and overall levels of finish. The messiest portion of the design is the back glass, which VW designers struggle to make elegant or look like a hypercar should. The huge size of the new W12 engine is obviously a challenge in its packaging, despite taking only a bit more room in a front-engine car than a normal V8. But the ethos of a giant Passat-infused hypercar is nonetheless very striking to showgoers who have seen nothing as low, wide or fast as this W12 Coupe wearing a VW badge. At the same time that the W12 Coupe loses points for its unfinished exterior and cabin fittings, there was also something refreshingly pure about the clean surfaces. This ultra clean style was the antithesis of the COuntach and Diablo aesthetic that had long …

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