Friday, March 18, 2011

Thursday, March 17, 2011

What to watch this weekend (Mar 17th - Mar 21st)

  • Inside West Coast Customs. HP Denali. Thursday @ 8pm - 9pm (Discovery's HD Theater)
  • Car Warriors. Teams of builders take on the 73' Datsun 240Z. Friday @ 6pm - 7pm (SPEED/SPEEDHD)
  • Chasing Classic Cars. Friday @ 9pm - 11pm (Discovery's HD Theater) 2nd season replays
  • ALMS - 12 hours of Sebring (FL). 59th annual running of this historic race. Saturday @ 10:15am - races end ( webcast)
  • Grand-Am Continental Sports Car Challenge. From Homestead-Miami Raceway. Saturday 2pm - 4pm (SPEED/SPEEDHD) replay
  • ALMS - 12 Hours of Sebring. 59th annual running of this historic race in Sebring, FL. Sunday @ 12:30p - 2pm(ABC/ABC HD) abridged
  • Motorweek. Audi R8 Spyder. Tuesday @ 8pm - 8:30pm (Discovery's HD Theater) replay

As hard as it is not to tell you all to tune into CBS, TNT, TBS and TruTV for 2011 NCAA Basketball Tournament coverage (oops), we have a great weekend of motorsports to look forward to with the 59th annual 12 Hours of Sebring. The race Saturday will be carried on webcast live; apparently it wasn't important enough to make live national TV this weekend. On Sunday, ABC will give it airtime, but presumably in a severely abridged recap format (1.5hrs). The 12 Hours of Sebring isn't just one of the great endurance races on the world stage, it's also the first point earning race of 2011 Intercontinental Le Mans Cup Season.

Photo courtesy of

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Orbital Dreams: Miracle Detail - Porsche 911 Turbo

The 60 degree days are starting to pop up on the east coast, so get your microfiber towels, clay bars, quality car wash and orbitals ready. I can smell the flowers blooming and it's time for a reminder to give your project car and daily drivers some attention.

Video courtesy of Miracle Detail.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Quick Vid: 2011 Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4

After an extremely long model run (9yrs) of the Lamborghini Murcielago, another flagship bull has been passed the torch. This is the newest supercar from Lamborghini, the Aventador LP700-4. For those unfamiliar with 'Lambo-speak', the 'LP' represents the longitudinally positioned engine, '700' which of course is the horsepower output from the mid-ship mounted V12, and 'dash four' is due to the all wheel drive system powering all four wheels.

From my seat in the bleachers, it appears Lamborghini's Aventador designers have taken design accents from both the ultra-low production, carbon fiber laden, Lamborghini Reventon and the current Gallardo (side ducts). These accents really make the Aventador visually smaller than the outgoing Murcielago. I'd guess if you ask Lamborghini HQ about design inspiration, however, the Aventador is simply the production version of the Sesto concept car.

Instead of the engineers going ape on more power for this car, they've put their effort into lightening the chassis and body panels significantly over the Murcielago's; a true carbon fiber monocoque is one of the contributing factors. Like all flagship Lamborghini's housing a V12, the name Aventador is taken from a famous Spanish fighting bull which gained notoriety in the early 1990s. Here's Lamborghini's new Aventador model debuting at the 2011 Geneva Motorshow.

Video courtesy of GT Channel.

Monday, March 14, 2011

For the love of A: The Audi 90 IMSA GTO

Audi has spent the last 30 odd-years tirelessly working to perfect their Quattro all-wheel drive system in race environments. Along this lengthy and ongoing path of experimentation, several engineering gems have resulted from their efforts. From the infamous age of no (turbo boost) limit Group B Rally racing and the all mighty Audi Quattro S1, to later dominance in the mid-late 90's in Touring Car racing with the Audi A4 Quattro sedan. Audi's Quattro story is still being written, but for this post we'll focus on one of Audi's motorsport marvels which resulted from guidelines set by the IMSA GT Championship in 1989; the Audi 90 IMSA GTO.

Video courtesy of Smatty01.

The Audi 90 IMSA GTO entry was loosely based on the road car of the same name, the Audi 90. Well I guess 'loosely based' isn't fair to say, since they shared the same taillights. This track representative of the Audi factory was built on a tube chassis, coming in at under 2000 lbs, with upwards of 700+ hp from a 2.2 Litre inline five. When this car debuted in the 1989 International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) GT Championship, it was still a work in progress. After missing the first two races of the season, trial and error got the two car Audi team through the first few events; once the proverbial kinks were worked out, however, domination was an understatement.

Video hosting courtesy of obimeister.

Much like history repeating itself less than a decade later, with the Audi A4 Quattro in the British Touring Car Championship series (albeit after competing in more than a single season in the BTCC), IMSA determined all-wheel drive was an unfair advantage. So Audi's ace drivers Hans-Joachim Stuck and Hurley Haywood, who missed out on the 1989 IMSA GT Championship mainly due to DNFs early in the season, would not get a second chance to do so. It's nice to think of what would've been.