Volkswagen Passat R36
That Grocery Hauler You've Been Waiting For
Volkswagen is set to release its most potent R model yet-the Passat R36. Only the second VW to carry the R badge, the new car will not only be the fastest Passat, the wagon version will be the most rapid estate that VW has ever produced.
The heart of the R36 is a new 3.6-liter FSI V6 engine developing 300 bhp, mated to a six-speed DSG gearbox channeling drive through all four wheels. At each corner are revised springs and dampers linked to uprated brake discs and calipers.
Wrapping the mechanical changes is a bespoke body kit which incorporates three deep airdams. Side skirts and chrome highlights are framed by special 18-inch wheels wrapped in 235/40 tires. At the rear, a deeper bumper houses a pair of chrome-tipped tailpipes and revised lights. The wagon version also features a discreet spoiler on the trailing edge of the rear window.
Gripping the driver and front passenger are a set of sculpted sport seats bearing the R36 logo. The dashboard is finished in brushed aluminum panels. A set of unique instruments, sport steering wheel and bespoke R polished pedals complete the look.
The R36 claims a zero-to-62-mph time of 5.6 seconds. The wagon, which (like the sedan) is fitted with 4MOTION all-wheel drive, returns a time of 5.8 seconds. Both are electronically limited to maximum speed of 155 mph. www.vw.com
Bristol Fighter T
British Veyron Upstart?
The maverick British marque, Bristol, has added another model to its Fighter range. Joining the plain old Fighter and the Fighter S will be the Fighter T, sporting a twin turbocharged and intercooled eight-liter V10. The all-aluminum engine is said to develop an incredible (and we choose that word carefully) 1012 bhp at 5600 rpm with an astonishing 1036 lb-ft of torque at 4500 rpm. The claimed zero to 60 mph time is 3.5 seconds. Bristol states that a potential maximum speed of over 270 mph has been electronically limited to a "more than sufficient" 225 mph at 4500 rpm. The Fighter has been beefed up with 30 percent stiffer torsional rigidity, firmer springs and dampers, a lower ride height, and 20 percent stiffer anti-roll bars. Five-spoke 19-inch alloy wheels wear 285- and 335-width rubber front and rear respectively. There are also some functional exterior styling changes to suit the extra performance, cool side-exit exhaust pipes, plus a new lightweight sport interior. The first customers should be seeing their new cars by September 2007. Who needs a Bugatti? www.bristolcars.co.uk
Maybach 62 S
When A 'Regular' 62 Isn't Special Enough
Maybach is adding a fourth variant to its line-up-the newly developed 62 S. The S stands for Special and Maybach has incorporated a number of specially developed features. Power output has also been enhanced with 612 hp provided by a Mercedes-AMG-enhanced 6.0-liter V12 engine, 62 hp more than the Maybach 62. Via a twin turbocharger and a water-type intercooler, maximum torque is 737 lb-ft, available between 2000 and 4000 rpm. Zero to 62 mph is completed in 5.2 seconds and top speed is electronically limited to 155 mph. A plate on the cover bears the signature of the technician who assembled the engine by hand. The car has a new front end with a redesigned radiator grille, new 20-inch wheels and modified light clusters. Like the 57 S, the new 62 S has single-tone paintwork in black or silver, both of which are available exclusively for the S models. Discreet 62 S lettering adorns the front wings beneath the A-pillars and the trunk lid. The Maybach 62 S is primarily designed to be chauffeur-driven and, of course, it gets pretty sumptuous in the back.
Maserati MC12 Versione Corse
A little weekend indulgence
This is a track-day car with a difference. It's the Maserati MC12 Versione Corse. Based on the highly successful MC12 GT1, its 6.0-liter V12 engine actually has more horsepower (755 bhp at 8000 rpm as opposed to 600), a better power-to-weight ratio, a Cambiocorsa electro-actuated gearbox (the racecar has a manual sequential), and two seats instead of one. With peak torque of 523 lb-ft at 6000 rpm, it warps to 120 mph in under 6.4 seconds. We may have to say that again: 120 mph in under 6.4 seconds. We're still giggling and shivering with fright at the same time. Oh, and top speed is 202.6 mph. It's virtually all carbon fiber, comes in Blue Victory (unless the customer specifies otherwise), it's not road legal, and only 12 will be made. This kind of hardware and exclusivity obviously doesn't come cheap: one million euros (roughly $1,315,843). And there's even an options list: manually adjustable shocks, data acquisition and annual technical upgrades. We might get two.
G-Power 3 Series
How To Make The 3 Look Even Scarier
G-Power recently unveiled its full tuning program for the E90 BMW 3 Series. A new wheel is available, the Silverstone Diamond, along with a Highline aerodynamic kit. Made from carbon fiber reinforced plastic, the kit includes front and rear bumpers, side skirts, and a rear wing, plus a carbon fiber front lip and rear diffuser. Those hankering for wheelarch extensions might like the Extremo body kit instead. The company offers various ways to make the hallmark straight-six even more powerful and torquey, or gives customers the option of dropping in either a 470-bhp 5.0-liter V8 or a 550-bhp 5.0-liter V10. To cope with the increased power levels, G-Power also supplies sport braking systems with 15-inch rotors and six-piston calipers. And yet again we have another reason to be thankful for the Nrburgring, as that's where the company tested and tuned its various suspension components. www.g-power.de
Like A GL Class, Only More So
Imagine a luxury German car that can go off-road. You've just come up with the Mercedes-Benz GL Class. Now imagine a GL that's been tuned, tweaked and generally transformed into something amazing. Chances are it will resemble the Carlsson CK50. The German tuning house has created yet another object of desire by taking the already well appointed and powerful GL500 and giving its 388-bhp, 5.0-liter V8 a dose of automotive steroids. Power now stands at 435 bhp, while torque is up to 442 lb-ft-available from 2800 to 4800 rpm. Carlsson claims a zero-to-62-mph time of 6.1 seconds and a top speed of 154 mph. Twin double oval exhaust tailpipes (all stainless steel) help provide this power as well as lending an aural thrill. Carlsson also offers the option of its C-Tronic suspension lowering kit that can reduce ride height by 1.4 inches. It not only lowers the center of gravity but also interacts with the road. On poor surfaces where the suspension has to work hard, ride height is automatically adjusted to ensure constant comfort. And by curbing body roll, it makes the car feel more agile. An extra benefit is that the lower car offers less wind resistance and has less air flowing beneath it. Naturally, there are wheels to go with it. Choose between 9.5x20-inch one-piece 11-spoke alloys (1/11 Brilliant Edition) or 10x22 three-piece (3/11 Ultra Light) models. After that, it's just a question of which soft nappa leather, precious wood, or multimedia system to have installed in the cabin. Wouldn't it be great to have to deal with these kinds of problems? www.carlsson.de
Trying To Make Scissor Doors Fashionable Again?
We ran a story on the Hamann Edition Race M5 in our February 2007 ish. So it was only a matter of time before Hamann molested the M6 in a similar fashion. By goosing an extra 60 bhp and 40 lb-ft of torque from the stock 500 bhp and 383 lb-ft 5.0-liter V10 and ditching the electronic speed limiter, the M6 Edition Race now hits a top speed of 199 mph. It's all done with high-performance headers, ECU tweaks and new exhaust bits, while the lowered suspension, choice of wheels, and obligatory aero aids (giving the car a DTM-like appearance) are also in evidence. Inattentive pedestrians will be glad to learn of the uprated brake system, even if they don't care about all the interior modifications available.www.hamann-motorsport.dewww.wheelpower.com
Who Wants To Be A Saab Millionaire?
Saab seats have always had a reputation for being some of the comfiest in the business. And Peter Gilbert of Wisconsin is better qualified than most to verify that statement. He's driven one million miles in his 1989 Saab 900 SPG-same engine, same turbo, driving an average of 1131.2 miles a week, 52 weeks a year, for 17 years. That's one shiny seat bottom. To celebrate this (pardon the pun) milestone, Saab has given Gilbert one shiny new Saab 9-5 Aero. And, for 2007, the company has pledged to do the same for any American customer who equals this feat in a Saab they bought new (see www.saabusa.com for all the details). Gilbert reckons he's in with a chance.
Because The 997 Turbo Is Just Way Too Slow
For those lucky enough to be driving a new Turbo, Gemballa has completed its tuning program for history's quickest production 911. How does a claimed 550 bhp and 575 lb-ft of torque sound? Gemballa indicates that 60 mph can be reached in under 3.8 seconds (3.6 with overboost), along with a new top speed of 197.6 mph. The Turbo GT550 engine program attains these values through application of a power kit comprising a complete new stainless steel exhaust system that will doubtless piss off the neighbors, including metal sport catalysts, and a modified engine management system. The full Monty includes a coilover suspension, 20-inch Black Edition alloy wheels and a comprehensive aerodynamic kit-including the 'I got your freakin' spoiler right here' rear wing perched on the decklid. There's also a new sport steering wheel and, naturally, various interior trim options that can be tailored according to the customer's taste. Tempting, wouldn't you say? www.gemballa.com