Design Talent Showcase – The Most Expensive Cars: Budget Edition – By Aksyonov Nikita

Oh the joys of steelies!~ Stamped steel wheels were the lifeblood of the car business for its first century.  They were cheap to produce, cheap to fix and stronger than most potholes.  Sure, they weighed a metric tonne each.  And this made handling bouncy or soggy in feel for drivers. What is today’s most expensive rides swapped their magnesium, titanium-alloy, carbon-fiber or forged aluminum for steel wheels? No hubcaps allowed, but we’ll maintain the 20-inch sizes on many of these OEM exotics.  Chiron, Regera, Superfast and more — all rolling on iron steamrollers. What else is Nikita up to? Vulcan …

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Concept Flashback – 1990 Renault Laguna Roadster

Concept cars serve a variety of purposes in the auto business.  They can be helpful as a grand pronouncement of new ideas — even if those are years away from the showrooms of real life.  They can also be a grand distraction.  Or a grand way to bring halo hotness to a dull lineup. And most of all, they are perfect as blank canvasses for designers to express themselves.  Take a simple idea, like a two-seat cabrio, and take it to its wildest brainstorm conclusion.  In the case of the ultra-curvy Laguna concept, this meant a mid-engine turbo four driving …

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Concept Flashback – 2006 Renault Nepta

You can always count on the French manufacturers to bring some real concept heat.  Perhaps it is the rotation between Frankfurt and Paris.  Whenever it is back in Paris, the brands really go all-out to pack the house. These concepts generally run the gamut of production-unlikliness.  From never-ever to never in a million years. So with no limits but the need to define a next-gen surface language and design theme, what kind of car would you use?  A grand cabriolet, of course! Four giant seats but just two butterfly doors.  These bring the entire bodyside up from central hinges on …

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2017 MINI John Cooper Works GP Concept – Design Analysis

MINI fatigue is undeniable lately as an enthusiast and for car shoppers alike.  The improvements are so substantive, but the design and image seems frozen in time.  Most of the time. Then rumbles up a track-attack prototype so extreme that even it hates being a hatchback.  It hates that its breadvan shape lacks the low nose of a supercar or the mid-engined silhouette. So this JCW GP concept rejects its limitations.  It says: i will create extreme downforce and aero — hatchback shape and all.  It does not accept that front-drive is a demerit on the Nordschleife. Floating external fenders …

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2017 Pebble Beach Concours – CONCEPT LAWN – PART TWO

We’re back with another round of simply gorgeous photos fresh from The Lodge at Pebble Beach. Seems our previous “all 12 cars” headline really came back to bite in the ass?! We forgot some notables. More pics of the Fux 720s, VW ID Buzz, the Italdesign Zerouno, Pagani Zonda Roadster Exclusive Evo, Lamborghini Huracan Performante, and last but not least, the Infiniti Q60 Project Black S. A few more glamor shots of the Prototype 9 and Vision 6 included for good measure. Bonus points if you can spot Horacio Pagani (aka the Head Dude at Pagani) and Gorden Wagener, the …

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2017 OKUYAMA Kode 0 – Tech Specs + World Premiere at The Quail

Here is a true dreamcar if there ever was one.  A modern expression of the Gandini wedge design ethos that ruled the supercar world for decades. But leaner, cleaner and more functional under Okuyama’s pen. This machine is ostensibly a one-off created by Ken Okuyama Cars, but a micro-batch of customer cars are possible with style like a Stratos Zero or Ferraro Modulo! It is a masterpiece of linearity.  But with nice overlapping layers that give depth to the front bumper, lower windowline and multi-material tail.  Part of this square rump is notably decorated with chrome brightwork, while the edges …

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2017 Lincoln Continental 3.0T AWD Black Label – Road Test Review

Welcome to a future where the Lincoln Continental has the grace of a Bentley.  It has cabin comfort worthy of a private jet and a backseat to shame most Mercedes. Impressive?  That barely does the Continental’s first impression justice. We spent a week getting to know the machine inside and out.  Learning the delights of cooled and massaged comfort in all four corners of the machine.  And flinging the Continental out of corners with unreal speed thanks to the Focus RS-style torque vectoring AWD system.  Of course, the whole time, surfing full throttle of 400HP/400 pound-feet of torque from the …

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6 Ways the 2019 Aston Martin VALKYRIE Is Next-Gen Bonkers

Whisper it, but Aston is on a serious roll lately. The launch sales of DB11 are strong and Vanquish is holding its own versus Bentley and Porsche.  All two dozen copies of the halo 2016 Vulcan track star sold out in days, and the future of the DBX SUV is on track for arrival in summer 2018 to stores worldwide.  From a brand new factory in Wales, of all places! Sure, Rapide and Vantage are showing some age, but will be rejuvenated fairly soon with new AMG turbo powertrains. And then we have this masterpiece.  The collab with Red Bull …

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2017 TOPCAR Porsche Panamera 971 Stingray GTR Edition

  Never shy about modding a hot Porsche! Larte Design has a menacing makeover in store for the new-gen Panamera 971 series. This dramatic exterior makeover from the crew who make the incredible 911 STINGER is called something similar: the STINGRAY. This widebody spectacular shares nearly no panels with the stock Panamera.  The smoothly slowing fender extensions and reverse breather vents make the Stingray GTR into a super touring car!  With four doors and 24K gold interior detailing, of course. The bodywork is all available as bare or painted carbon and the kit comes in just below $30k in total. …

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