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The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
Many car enthusiasts believe that Southern California is the place to be if you love cars, and HRE Wheels proved that point at its annual open house yesterday at its headquarters in Vista, CA.
It’s the first, but it most certainly won’t be the last. Known for its wild aero kits, Swiss-tuner Fab Design has unveiled an excessively-styled version of the new McLaren MP4-12C supercar.
Scheduled to make its official reveal tomorrow during the opening press day of the Geneva Motor Show, we’ve obtained a selection of shots prior to the big day.
We’ll be the first to admit the McLaren, while an amazing super sports car, is less than super in the looks department. Still, it’s hard not to think Fab Design has taken the styling a step too far.
Modified McLarens are set to become a theme of this year’s Geneva show with two other tuners set to reveal their renditions as well. And if you don’t like the Fab Design car, be warned, these two companies aren’t known for being tame: Mansory and Gemballa.
GALLERY: Fab Design McLaren MP4-12C
If Ron Dennis were dead, he’d probably be rolling over in his grave. But he’s not, so we imagine he just had a rough sleep last night.
Why you ask? Well, it’s because the wacky tuners at Mansory have gotten a hold of his latest pride and joy, the McLaren MP4-12C.
Set to be unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show next week, the Mansory version doesn’t look as gaudy as one might expect, considering some of their past projects. Still, we’ll wait to see it in person to judge.
The transformation includes an exposed carbon fiber roof, as well as wider carbon fiber front and rear sections that widen the car by roughly 2-inches. Mansory says the new spoiler and rear diffuser adds rear downforce.
Inside the fenders are some new 20-inch wheels, measuring 20×9-inches on the front with 245/30ZR20 tires and 20×11-inches in the rear with 305/25ZR21 tires.
Also noted in a release are performance enhancements with a new exhaust system, engine management system and air filter, resulting in 670 hp and 498 lb-ft of torque, up from a factory 608 hp and 443 lb-ft.
GALLERY: Mansory McLAren MP4-12C
See AutoGuide’s complete Geneva Motor Show Preview Here
McLaren unveiled a customized MP4-12C at Pebble Beach, indicating the British automaker will offer a long line of individual options for customers. This particular McLaren features a host of new upgrades and modifications put together by the British automaker, most notable of which are the Satin Orange paint and aggressive new fenders. There are also carbon fiber bits all over the car including a windshield cowl, engine cover gilles along the outside of the glass, and a new carbon rear exhaust cover. The rims have a polished face with black painted centers and the roof panel has also been painted black. Standard options of the 12C include carbon mirrors, a carbon lower front spoiler and rear valence as well as a stealth package which blacks out the exhaust tips and wing supports.
Built on the chassis of an early validation prototype, this isn’t a oroduction car but merely a glimpse at what sort of custom options McLaren will be offering in the future to owners.
Priced at $229,000 for a standard model, the upgrades raise the asking price for this MP4-12C to around $270,000.
[Source: Team Speed]
Vorsteiner has done an amazing job executing tuning packages on some of Germany’s finest automobiles, and it may have been a long time coming, but they’ve finally gotten their hands dirty on one of Italy’s offerings. The subject of Vorsteiner’s first Italian project is Ferrari‘s 599 GTB Fiorano, the front-engine V12-powered exotic. Drawing inspiration from other 599 variants, Vorsteiner has named their exotic 599 VX, blending the best of both worlds, from the 599 GTO and 599XX.
The 599 VX will come with an eight-piece styling package, replacing the factory front bumper, hood, side skirts, rear deck lid, rear intake panel, and rear bumper (with diffuser). And as always with Vorsteiner’s products, the styling package is constructed out of high quality, lightweight carbon fiber and will be paired with a set of Vorsteiner’s T-6160 aluminum wheels. Finishing off the project is a sporty new stainless steel exhaust, guaranteed to give the 599 a whole new tone.
A countdown on their website shows that the official unveil is slightly five days away, but we have these photos to keep us interested until then.
GALLERY: Vorsteiner Ferrari 599 VX
If you want a Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorano but think it suffers from being too elegant, then the Mansory Stallone might just be up your alley.
Mansory has made quite a name for itself by customizing exotic machinery to its clients individual needs, and it is clear, money doesn’t necessarily buy you good taste. Hence over the years, we have seen many wild and extravagant modifications on many different exotic automobiles, and Ferrari’s are no exception.
Mansory had made just five copies of the modified 599. Along with changing the cars name to Stallone, Mansory has added a unique body-kit, special wheels and an interior of truly questionable taste.
Now you can have a Stallone of your own since one has propped up for sale in Dubai. The seller, Prestige Cars has not listed much information on this 720-hp supercar, so your guess on its price and mileage is as good as ours. Their website just states it is a 2008 model.
So if you’re interested in parking one of these in your garage, now you know where to find one.
GALLERY: Mansory Stallone
In a world where there’s something for everyone, German tuner Graf Weckerle has introduced its extravagant tuning package for Aston Martin‘s V8 Vantage. The end result is definitely not our cup of tea, but we admit the German tuner does have a way of doing something very unique.
Blending history and culture with Aston Martin’s modern design, this V8 Vantage was released in order to honor French champagne makers. Dubbed Blanc de Blancs, this particular Graf Weckerle project is named after the famous Chardonnay champagne. We’re not quite sure if those wheels would do any favors to any vehicle, but they’re definitely one-of-a-kind.
We’re also digging the unique spin they did on the photoshoot – can’t say we’ve ever seen anything like it before.
GALLERY: Graf Weckerle Aston Martin V8 Vantage
[Source: GT Spirit]
We’ve seen some crazy car builds in our time, but this one might top the list. SVK Customs based out of Sweden has been overhauling a Ferrari 550 GTR to one exotic machine. Just a brief overview will make any enthusiast drop their jaw: custom carbon fiber widebody kit, BMW powerplant and custom fabricated suspension components to give it some extreme steering angles for drifting – yes drifting.
A closer look at the suspension components reveals plenty of custom fabrication along with center-bolt hubs for the wheels.
For horsepower, SVK wasn’t content with the factory Italian V12, so in went a BMW European V8 with desires of obtaining over 1,000-hp. Yikes.
GALLERY: SVK Customs Ferrari 550 GTR
Hamann previously released its first Victory iteration with the original Lamborghini Gallardo and now they’ve followed it up with the Victory II on the Lamborghini Gallardo LP560-4. The tuning package’s main focal point is its widebody conversion along with plenty more additional carbon fiber parts and increased engine performance.
Hamann equips the Gallardo LP560-4 with new wing doors on the Victory II, in true traditional Lamborghini fashion. The front bumper is very much race-inspired and features a center carbon fiber diffuser. The fender blisters gives the Lp560-4 a wider stance with extended side skirts to match, while the rear receives a new diffuser and rear wing. The hood, spoiler and the air intake on the roof are available in carbon fiber..
For wheels, Hamann has matched the Victory II with a set of 20-inch Edition Race wheels with a unique finish to match the theme of the exotic. The wheels are sized with a 20×9.5-inch pair on the front, while the rear is equipped with 20×13-inchers.
Horsepower increases from 560-hp to 580-hp with 424 lb-ft of torque. This is done through an ECU retune while the note of the car is certainly changed with new mufflers to the exhaust.
The interior is overlaid with a 14-piece carbon fiber interior kit while Hamann also offers carbon fiber-backed sport seats. And of course, anything in the interior can be reupholstered or customized to the customer’s desires.
GALLERY: Hamann Victory II Lamborghini Gallardo LP560-4
We’ve never been a huge fan of widebody Lamborghinis or Ferraris, but Anderson Germany has actually executed this one properly. They’ve taken your standard Lamborghini Gallardo LP560-4 and decided to make what they call a ‘White Edition’ out of it by widening its body, outfitting it with 20-inch wheels and enhancing horsepower by 40 additional ponies.
Going from the stock 560-hp to 600-hp, Anderson Germany does an ECU modification along with new air filters and a sport exhaust system. An adjustable valve in the exhaust allows the driver to enjoy three different levels of noise. The exhaust also frees up close to 50 lbs of unnecessary weight.
Lowering the vehicle is a sport suspension package which also helps sit the 20-inch three-piece wheels nicely onto the fenders. Up front is a 20×9 wrapped with 245/30/20 while the rear consists of a massive 20×12.5-inch pairing with 325/25/20 rubber. Clearly the rear of this Gallardo has been widened and it is packing some serious rubber.
The widebody aero kit also consists of a new front bumper, side skirts, a rear diffuser and rear spoiler. Inside the white and black theme continues with white carbon details, black Alcantara and black and white leather seats.
GALLERY: Anderson Germany Lamborghini Gallardo White Edition
[Source: GT Spirit]
Amidst all the OEM built and sponsored vehicles at SEMA are a few privately owned gems, commissioned by their owners from some of the top aftermarket shops in the country. We stumbled across one such creation at the Mobil 1 booth.
As though the Lamborghini LP670-4 SuperVeloce wasn’t potent enough, one speed freak decided to ship his car to Underground Racing, where the experts in turbocharging high-horsepower engines really took this Lambo to an all new level. Thanks to twin-turbochargers, the 6.5-liter V12 engine gets a bump from 670-hp to more than double at 1,400-hp. The entire engine was rebuilt from top-to-bottom, custom twin-disk carbon clutch is used to stand up to all that horsepower and a Motec ECU handles the fuel and spark.
Little else was done to the car (what else needs to be) with a nice set of HRE 798R wheels adding a little extra style to the wildest of Lambos.
We’re excited to see the first videos of this car blasting down the quarter mile or even demolishing the stock car’s 212-mph top speed.
GALLERY: Underground Racing Twin-Turbo Lamborghini LP670-4 SV
Apparently the factory 525-hp from Audi‘s R8 V10 Spyder isn’t enough for the fine folks at Sport Wheels. They have released a pair of tuning packages to up horsepower depending on the owner’s needs and wants. Their stage one will dial it up to 565-hp and 413 ft-lbs of torque while the second stage pumps out 600-hp and 428 ft-lbs of torque.
The stage 1 upgrade consists of a remapped ECU for the 40-hp bump for a cost of around $1,935. Given the cost of the R8 Spyder, this is actually quite affordable for the performance gains. And if that’s not enough, the stage 2 includes an “ironman muffler,” which we’re just going to guess is a fancy name for a nice sporty exhaust. To reach that famed 600-hp mark you’ll have to dish out $7,570.
Sport Wheels’ Galactic Audi R8 Spyder also sports a set of 20×8.5- and 20×11-inch OZ Ultraleggara HTL wheels with Continental Sport Contact tires. Those run a pretty $5,675. And lastly, a Model 3 HLS 4 coilover kit can be had for $9,450.
Gallery: SPORT WHEELS Galactic Audi R8 Spyder
Official press release available after the break.
Twin-supercharged V12 makes 848-hp
Novitec Rosso has struck once again with an even more powerful version of the Ferrari 599 GTB. Thanks to some new turbine blades on the superchargers, some modified piping and a retuned ECU, the twin-supercharged V12 engine has been bumped from the last 808-hp tuning phase all the way up to 848-hp. Novitec claims a 0-60 mph time of 3.4 seconds and a top speed of 214 mph.
Painted in matte white and black and including all of the Novitec goodies, like a special aero kit, 20 and 21-inch wheels with a massive brake upgrade and a height adjustable suspension, Novitec will build just three 848 Race models.
The car will officially debut at the Geneva Auto Show next week and AutoGuide will bring you plenty of live photos with complete show coverage starting Monday, March 1st.
GALLERY: Novitec Rosso 848 RACE
See the official release and an incredible video of the Novitec Rosso 599 (808-hp version) after the jump:
Ahead of its debut at the Geneva Auto Show next week, ABT Sportsline has released a few teaser images of its hard-core version of the V10-powered R8 5.2. Called the ABT R8 GTR, this German exotic is based off the modified R8 5.2 that ABT brought to Geneva last year, and boasts the same V10 under the hood, which has been tuned to 600-hp.
New for 2010, the GTR model will get an even more aggressive aero treatment, with most of the body panels made of carbon fiber. In fact, ABT has taken a light-weight approach with the GTR model, manufacturing the hood, front and rear bumpers out of carbon fiber, while the rear hatch has been replaced with a carbon fiber unit and the glass swapped out for light-weight plexiglass. Just 25 R8 GTRs will be built.
Along with this monster, ABT will display a more subtle R8 Spyder as well as the first modified version of Audi’s new flagship A8.
Best known for its Volkswagen tuning, ABT hasn’t neglected its core audience either and will show a new line of performance and aesthetic products for the very-new Golf R model. With 265-hp and a 0-60 mph time of 5.0 seconds in stock trim, we can’t wait to see what ABT has in store for this hot German hatch.
AutoGuide will bring you live coverage of the ABT vehicles and of everything else at the Geneva Auto Show, starting March 1st.
GALLERY: ABT Sportsline R8 GTR
One of Germany’s most respected tuners is set to unveil a new Grand Touring supercar at the Geneva Auto Show in March. Based on a Mercedes SL (or SL65 AMG Black Series perhaps), the C25 supercar from Carlsson has a significantly redesigned body as well as some expectedly serious performance under the hood.
The 6.0-liter twin-turbo V12 engine has been tweaked to produce roughly 750-hp and 850 ft-lbs of torque. We also expect a curb weight that is much lighter than stock thanks to the use of carbon fiber body components.
More than just a brute performer, Carlsson claims the C25 will be daily drivable and can be serviced at your local Mercedes dealer. At a price of $700,000 Carlsson aims to make the C25 even more exclusive by only building 25 different models – one for each country that it distributes it, meaning that the owner will be the only one in his country with one.
GALLERY: Carlsson C25
Official release after the jump:
First unveiled at the Frankfurt Auto Show, the carbon fiber bodied Aston Martin DB9 (first thought to be a DBS), drew crowds even when competing with the launch of exotics like the Ferrari 458. Needless to say, not all those examining the ultra-thick carbon fiber weave were in favor of the modification. Germany tuner Mansory has shown examples of such extravagance in the past, but never before on a model as noble as an Aston Martin.
Along with the photos we snapped at the show, we now have a whole gallery of pics Mansory has supplied, showing the carbon creation revving its V12 engine in the wild.
Along with the notable carbon bodywork, Mansory built the DB9 as a full widebody with a new front end mimicking the one found on Aston’s upcoming supercar, the One-77. Thanks to these new photos we also get a great new look at the car’s incredibly custom exterior.
GALLERY: Mansory Cyrus
See more Mansory Cyrus photos after the jump:
It seems like only yesterday that Ferrari unveiled the Enzo as the pinnacle of all that an automobile could stand for and achieve. It was thought untouchable, both in terms of competition and modification. Oh how times have changed.
Dedicated Porsche tuner Gemballa has decided to try its hand at the ultra-exclusive world of Ferrari tuning, and we have the first images of what is known as the MIG-UI Enzo. The car was built for brothers Mustafa and Illyas Galadari of The Illyas and Mustafa Galadari Group – Gemballa’s Middle East distributor. The Gemballa Enzo is named after the brothers, with Mustafa’s name coming first because he donated his personal Enzo to the project.
We have to say the Star Wars-inspired body is definitely extreme (just how they like it in Dubai). Inside the cockpit gets a luxurious overhaul, a significant upgrade from the Enzo’s basic factory equipment. The car is scheudeld to be officially unverield at a private event in Dubai and hopefully then we’ll have some info on what (if any) modifications were made to the 6.0-liter V12 engine. Normally we’d say such a powerplant is untouchable, but there is the lone example of of the Edo Competition/ZR Auto Enzo, which is powered by an 840-hp FXX motor.
GALLERY: Gemballa MIG-UI Enzo
Ferrari has just announced the second vehicle to come out of its in-house Special Projects program, a modified 599 GTB now known as the P540 Superfast Aperta. The P540 Superfast was built for Edward Walson, the son of John Walson, who invented cable TV. Walson commissioned the vehicle with inspiration coming from the Fantuzzi-designed Ferrari which appeared in the 1968 film Toby Dammit.
We have to say the lines of this car are both original and classically beautiful. It was designed by Pininfarina and built in-house in Maranello, with Walson taking part in the entire design process.
Much of the car remains the same as a standard 599, including the 612-hp 6.0-liter V12 engine. Amazingly, while the car was transformed into a convertible, only 44 lbs of weight were added to the chassis thanks to the use of copious amounts of carbon fiber.
There is no word on what Walson paid for the one-of-one gold Ferrari, but we are intrigued by the fact that a convertible 599 model is now most certainly a possibility for Ferrari.
GALLERY: Ferrari P540 Superfast Aperta
Official release after the jump:
Renowned Ferrari-tuner Novitec Rosso has finally released its first complete package for Ferrari’s latest model, the California. Novitec is known for twin-supercharged monster engines but this initial offering contains just a simple exhaust system and a recalibrated ECU. In total, power has been raised by 40-hp to 500-hp, with torque up 24 ft-lbs to 382. The 4.3-liter V8 engine can now also rev to a maximum rpm of 8300. In addition, the exhaust system can be adjusted using the manettino to deliver a more robust exhaust note.
Outside the car gets a new front lip spoiler, side skirts, a new rear diffuser and trunk lid spoiler. All parts are wind tunnel tested to reduce lift on the front and increase downforce in the rear and all are made from clear-coated carbon fiber.
A staggered wheel fitment is offered with Novitec’s own NF3 wheels in a 21×9-inch front fitment and 22×11.5-inch rear fitment, matched with 255/30/21 front and 315/25/22 rear Pirelli tires.
A complete suspension system if offered that lowers that car’s stance by 35mm. This same system incorporates an hydraulic lift feature than car raise the front axle by 40mm at speeds of up to 50 mph, making it easy to enter parking garages or avoid scuffing the carbon fiber front lip when navigating less than ideal roads.
Some time in the Spring we expect Novitec Rosso to release a high-powered kit for the California making in excess of 600-hp!
GALLERY: Novitec Rosso Ferrari California
We recently reported that his uber-richness, James Glickenhaus, had confirmed that he and several partners were going to build P4/5 Competizione race car to enter in endurance racing events.
The P4/5 name comes from the P4/5 vehicle that was custom built for Glickenhaus by Ferrari design house Pininfarina, based on an Enzo and inspired by the Ferrari P 3/4 race car.
Initially it was reported that this race car would be built on a Ferrari 612 chassis and then the obvious connection was made with an Enzo underpinning the race car. Glickenhaus has, however, confirmed that the race car will be based Ferrari chassis, but use a V8 – leading us to speculate that a 458 Italia would be a nice place to start.
The plan is to enter the car at the Nürburging 24 hour race next year, in a class that allows one-off vehicles. This would not be a homolgated race car, however, and wouldn’t be able to run in other series, whether FIA GT3 or the American Le Mans Series.
[Source: FerrariChat via Autoblog]
Billionaire James Glickenhaus says coachbuilt Enzo race car project is a go
James Glickenhaus, the man behind the coachbuilt Pininfarina Ferrari P4/5, has confirmed that he will build a race version of the car to compete in endurance racing.
The P4/5, which debuted at the 2006 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, is a one-off rebodied Ferrari Enzo, built by the Pininfarina design house to look like the famous 1967 Ferrari P4 race car. It is reported to have cost Glickenhaus $4 million.
The P4/5 Competizione would be a race-ready sibling to that car and will likely cost even more.
Several months back when Glickenhaus first proposed the idea he admitted it was a long shot, saying that, “There are a LOT of stars that would have to align for this to happen but it’s not impossible.”
Glickenhaus recently posted on FerrariChat under his screen name of Napoli that, “Things are starting to come together. It will take time but there is excitement and real interest. Thanks to my Partners in this adventure! This will be some trip and it has begun. P 4/5 took on a life of her own. May P 4/5 Competizione follow her example.”
It is expected that the Pininfarina Ferrari P4/5 would be entered at an upcoming Nürburgring 24 hour race.
GALLERY: Ferrari P4/5 Competizione
The team at Heffner Performance have finally completed their initial Stage 1 twin-turbo package for the Audi R8. Running on pump gas and using just 6 psi of boost, the two turbochargers boost output from the 4.2-liter V8 engine from 353 rwhp to 536 rwhp, a gain of over 50 percent. A more powerful 100 octane version is also being worked on which is expected to produce in excess of 600-hp. In addition, Heffner also plans twin-turbo applications for the V10-powered R8.
The Heffner car is actually not the first turbocharged Audi R8. The first such car was built by German Audi tuner MTM for a private client in the Middle East. It was a matte-black car that reportedly made 888-hp and debuted at the Dubai Auto Show several years ago.
Heffner Performance is well-known in elite tuning circles for twin-turbo applications for the Dodge Viper, Lamborghini Gallardo and Ford GT.
See after the jump for a dyno graph:
German Lamborghini tuner IMSA has just released its complete widebody tuning package for the LP560-4 and just like the company’s last Gallardo project, it’s absolutely stunning. The kit includes a new front splitter and rear diffuser, as well as fender flares and a rear spoiler.
Arguably the best item IMSA offers, however, are the stunning split-spoke wheels, which feature gold center portions but can also be had in the standard aluminum silver. The wheels are central locking pieces in a 20-inch fitment, measuring 9-inches wide with 245/30/20 tires up front and 12.5-inches wide with 325/25/20 tires out back.
A new stainless steel exhaust system is also offered, that IMSA claims nets a 5 percent power increase, bumping output to 590ps and 560 nm of torque. That’s 582-hp and 413 ft-lbs of torque.
There are also plenty of options for the Lambo’s cockpit, with carbon fiber trim pieces as well as carbon fiber racing seats.
GALLERY: IMSA Gallardo LP560-4