Mk8 GTI flaunts ’80s bling, Genesis’ first electric SUV, when Skoda stunned at Bonneville
This VW GTI BBS Concept wheels back time
Intake: Hot on the heels of his recent Atlas Cross Sport GT concept, VW fan Jamie Orr has got his hands on a new Mk8 Golf GTI. This time Orr looked back to the Mk2 Golf of 1984 for inspiration, starting with the classic BBS alloy wheels, which give the car its moniker. The 19-inch Super RS rims feature the classic BBS waffle pattern and are shod with Delinte 235/35/19 tires. The cars sits lower than a standard Mk8 GTI on H&R adjustable coilovers, has a Borla exhaust, and boasts BBS retro red-and-black decals. The standard 241-hp motor and the interior were left untouched.
Exhaust: Well, you can’t go far wrong with a set of BBS wheels on a Golf GTI, but we’re a little disappointed that Orr didn’t go to town inside as well. If he can fit a golf-ball gear knob to an Atlas, then why not to this ’80s’ throwback GTI?
Genesis takes the all-electric plunge with the GV60
Intake: Genesis just unveiled the GV60 electric crossover, the Korean luxury brand’s take on the Electric-Global Modular Platform (E-GMP). That same platform underpins the futuristic Hyundai Ioniq 5 and the more conventional (but still cool) Kia EV6. On the GV60, we see hallmarks of modern Genesis design: the quad headlamps arranged into two horizontal lines, and a crest grille. Inside, Genesis’ simplistic design ethos found in their current offerings continues. There’s a long, slim screen extending from the center infotainment system over in front of the driver’s seat. There’s also something Genesis calls the Crystal Sphere, which is a fancy shift-by-wire system that, according to the automaker, will “intuitively inform drivers when the vehicle is ready to drive.” We’re expecting more details about performance, tech, and pricing to trickle out in the coming months. Genesis says North American deliveries are expected to being in 2022.
Exhaust: This is hardly the most attractive adaptation of Hyundai’s E-GMP platform. The coupe-like profile is certainly in vogue right now, and there are details that we dig about the GV60, but the overall package looks clunky, a word that never enters our minds when beholding Genesis’ sultry gas-powered offerings. Still, the GV60 is significant as the lead-off batter in Genesis’ electric lineup. We’re looking forward to seeing additional BEV offerings from Genesis; here’s hoping they do justice to the brand’s well-proportioned, elegant design language.
10 years ago, Skoda set a Bonneville speed record
Intake: Early on the morning of Friday, August 19, 2011, a Skoda Octavia vRS became the fastest two-liter forced induction production car ever to run on the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah. The Southern California Timing Association recorded an official top speed of 227.080 mph after two runs. Driven by British auto journalist Richard “Dickie” Meaden, the car was pulled from Skoda’s U.K. media fleet before being fitted with a number of upgrades to crack 200 mph. An eight-injector fuel system was installed, along with a ten-liter radiator, taller gearing, and a parachute in addition to the standard disc brakes.
“Driving the salt flats was a dream come true,” remembers Meaden. “It always felt like a privilege to be allowed to charge flat-out down the salt. Knowing how much passion and hard work went into getting the Octavia to Speed Week made that privilege all the greater. I’m incredibly proud of what we all achieved and will never forget how it felt to break a record or to be part of such an exceptional group of people.” Amazingly, the record in the G/PS category still stands.
Exhaust: We love an underdog story. You can’t get a much more unlikely Bonneville speedster than a Skoda, can you?
After 2022, Mercedes will officially depart Formula E
Intake: After next August, a factory-backed Mercedes effort will be absent from the top class of electric, open-wheel racing. Though it didn’t officially compete as the “Mercedes-Benz EQ Formula E Team” until the 2019–20 season, the company had its fingers in the BEV racing pie since Season 7 (2018–19) through HWA Racelab, the same firm that ran Mercedes’ vehicles in DTM as of 2000. As of last weekend, Mercedes has claimed both team and drivers championships in Season 8 of Formula E, so it’s hardly leaving with a bad taste in its mouth. The three-pointed star won’t necessarily depart along with the factory team, either; Mercedes is considering selling the team. “We have also a certain degree of responsibility towards the team and the series,” Toto Wolff, Mercedes’ head of motorsports, told motorsports.com.
Exhaust: Ironically, Mercedes is withdrawing from Formula E to focus on … more EVs. And Formula 1, even though the series is currently hybrid-only. Stuttgart has, it appears, no intention of going gentle into a Red Bull-dominated future. The move is a vote of confidence in a series that is becoming highly constrained and overdramatic; but Formula 1 gets eyeballs, and good publicity sells cars. “Mercedes-AMG will be positioned and strengthened as our performance brand through its close alignment to our record-breaking Formula One team, and F1 will be our company’s works motorsport focus for the years ahead,” says Bettina Fetzer, Mercedes’ vice president of marketing.
Bentley ready to release first customer-spec Bacalar and the Blower Continuation Series into the world
Intake: Bentley Mulliner has completed the first customer cars in both of its new series of handcrafted, bespoke 12-car projects. Bacalar Car One is Mulliner’s first new coachbuilt barchetta, finished in Atom Silver and tailored with black and green leather inside. Blower Car One is a meticulous recreation of Sir Henry “Tim” Birkin’s 1929 supercharged 4½-Litre painted, as is only appropriate, in Birkin Green. These first customer cars come after their engineering prototypes, known as the “Car Zeroes,” were adequately thrashed during mileage, performance, and climate testing.
Exhaust: With full testing and analysis out of the way, you can bet that the 12 bespoke examples in each series will be worthy of the iconic Bentley nameplate. We’re particularly enamored with the recreation of the legendary 1929 supercharged 4½-Litre—hey, we love classics—but both series promise to be collectible due to their bespoke build sheets and limited production numbers. As for these first two cars, who wouldn’t want to own #001?
Half doors soon available on Gladiator straight from Jeep
Intake: Mopar Insiders has received word from Jeep dealers that the half doors currently available on the Jeep Wrangler straight from the factory will also be made available for the Jeep Gladiator. The half doors with premium uppers will set buyers back $4990 and the half doors with base uppers will cost $4590. Both will require an additional option box to be checked for one of the three available tonneau covers.
Exhaust: Considering that they’re the same doors on Wrangler and Gladiator, were not sure why there was ever a delay in offering a dual-door group straight from the factory as they have been with Wrangler. Jeep just keeps making it easier for customers to build their ultimate off-roader without relying on outside vendors.