The BMW i8 already contains quite a lot of carbon fibre — after all, its chassis is mostly made of the stuff . But tuner AC Schnitzer obviously feels that isn’t enough, particularly when it comes to the automobile’s exterior. Yes, the plug-in hybrid sports car’s skin is made of thermoplastics, but unlike its chassis, there’s a notable absence of the automotive black gold, though that can’t be said about the AC Schnitzer-fettled i8. The German company is now off ering a host of aerodynamic add-ons made of carbon fibre, specifically the side skirts and rear spoiler.
The highlight of its i8 improvement programme has to be the new AC1 forged alloy wheels. Seen on the car in a 21-inch size and featuring five twinned spokes, the wheels are shod with ultra-low-profile tyres, measuring 245/35 R21 at the front and 285/30 R21 at the back.
IF you’ve got a Porsche Cayenne or Macan with air springs installed and were hoping to lower it without having to resort to “archaic” steel springs, TechArt has just the thing: an electronic lowering module for the SUV pair. Even in its Normal mode, cars equipped with the add-on (essentially a piggyback ECU for the air springs) are 10mm and 22mm lower than standard for the Macan and Cayenne respectively. If that’s not low enough for your Macan, the module can lower the car by up to 20mm when the Sport Plus button is pushed.
That’s not the lowest the two sports utility vehicles can go, though. The unit can drop the Macan and Cayenne’s ride height by a further 30mm and 20mm respectively. However, the bad news is that the super-low-ride height can only be activated when the car is stationary, and after it has been locked.
WINGS TO FLY
THE Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG has given way to the Mercedes-AMG GT, but Prior Design has a way to breathe new life (and an aggressive new look) into the gullwing supercar. Comprising a full widebody kit that includes more heavily sculpted front and rear ends, plus a wild-looking bonnet and fixed rear wing, this proves that while the SLS AMG is getting on in years, you still can teach this old dog some new tricks.
COLOUR ME RETRO
THE Toyota 86 isn’t short on nostalgia, seeing how it’s the spiritual successor to the legendary Hachi-Roku. So it’s appropriate that the Japanese automaker is mining the coupe for even more retro appeal during this year’s Goodwood Festival of Speed. To that end, the carmaker will be dressing up five 86s in the livery of some of the marque’s historic racecars. Chief among the retro-inspired race livery are the Castrol colours worn by the Celica GTFour rally vehicle. Other classic Toyota racecar colour schemes that will appear at Goodwood include the yellow and green livery of the 2000GT that participated in the Yatabe Speed Trials in the 1960s.
GERMAN STALLION TRIUMPHS
PORSCHE scored a 1-2 victory at this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans and set a new record for the most outright wins by a manufacturer. The winning car was the 919 Hybrid (No. 19), driven by Nick Tandy, Earl Bamber and former Formula One pilot Nico Hulkenberg. Making this triumph even more significant is that the latter two drivers were making their debut at this gruelling race!
In second place was No. 17, driven by Timo Bernhard, Brendon Hartley and former F1 driver Mark Webber. This trio were actually leading the early part of the race, but fell behind due to the one-minute penalty they were given for overtaking under yellow flags. When the race ended, No. 17 was a lap behind the winning car. Rounding out the podium was the Audi R18 e-tron quattro (No. 7), piloted by last year’s victors, Andre Lotterer, Marcel Fassler and Benoit Treluyer.
Fortune did not favour them this year. During the race, a big section of the engine hood came off and damaged the car. The team repaired the damage in less than seven minutes, but in that period, they were lapped twice and couldn’t recover. Although this trio only managed to finish third, they set a new record with a race lap time of three minutes and 17.475 seconds.