Ram salutes EMS workers, rare ’80s Ferrari for sale, reserve Harley’s $15K EV bike
Ram’s newest half-ton salutes EMS workers
Intake: Ram trucks has unveiled the second iteration of its “Built to Serve” special edition pickups, this time tipping the hat to Emergency Medical Service (EMS) professionals. The Ram 1500 EMS model will feature two specially selected exterior colors—Hydro Blue and Bright White—as well as an American flag and a “Built to Serve” decal for the rear quarter panels. Other exterior styling cues include an all-black grille surround, black bumpers, black-bezel lighting, 20-inch aluminum wheels with a unique Technical Gray finish, black badges, and dual four-inch black exhaust tips. The cabin receives blue accent stitching as well as a special “Built to Serve” badge in the passenger-side dash. There are Velcro patches on each front seat and inboard shoulder panel for first responders to adorn the cabin with their own patches as well. The backs of the front seats feature a Pouch Attachment Ladder System/Modular Lightweight Load-bearing Equipment (PALS/MOLLE) webbing to attached additional equipment or pouches. The Built to Serve models also get the 4×4 Off-Road Group content, including all-terrain tires, an electronic-locking rear axle, underbody armor, tow hooks, and off-road calibrated shock absorbers at all four corners. You can get the Built to Serve edition on Big Horn or Lone Star crew cab models, with either the 3.6-liter, 305-hp Pentastar V-6 or the 5.7-liter, 395-hp Hemi V-8 with or without the mild-hybrid eTorque tech. The 2023 Ram 1500 Built to Serve EMS model will go on sale in the fourth quarter of this year with an MSRP of $56,810 including destination.
“The Ram 1500 Built to Serve EMS edition is our way of honoring and expressing deep gratitude to the frontline heroes who serve or have served our country,” said Mike Koval Jr., Ram’s brand CEO. “At Ram, we are pleased to recognize the important work emergency medical workers provide to their communities every day.”
Exhaust: The truck crowd tends to be among the strongest supporters of first responders, so these Built to Serve models should be well-received. The first iteration of this line, which honored firefighters, debuted in February of this year with a similar cosmetic treatment, albeit with red exterior paint instead of blue. — Nathan Petroelje
One of five Ferrari 288 GTO Evoluziones is for sale
Intake: Group B was the 1980s’ road and rally formula that just kept giving. Without Group B, there’d have been no Audi Sport Quattro, no Lancia 037, no Porsche 959, no Peugeot 205 T16, and certainly no Ferrari 288 Gran Turismo Omologato. The rules required car makers to build at least 200 homologation specials to compete, and Ferrari put together a total of 272 288 GTOs between 1984 and 1987, based loosely on the 308. On top of those production stipulations, manufacturers were permitted to assemble a further 20 Evolution models where engineers were given even more free rein. By the time Group B was axed Ferrari had only built five examples, however. Distinguishing the Evoluzione from the standard 288 GTO is a wide body of kevlar and fiberglass, with a carbon fiber rear wing, to shrink the curb weight weight to a paltry 2072 lbs. Under the vented plexiglass rear window sits a 2.8-liter twin-turbo V-8, as used in the regular GTO, but with bigger turbos to boost power from 400 hp to 650 hp. Top speed is said to be 229 mph. For sale at RM Sotheby’s is chassis number 79888 which was first sold to Belgian racer Jean “Beurlys” Blaton in 1987 and has had several owners since, including Aston Martin owner Lawrence Stroll. It has recently had a service and fresh coat of paint that set the current owner back $130,000.
Exhaust: Records are surely about to tumble when this 288 GTO Evoluzione goes to auction in Germany on October 19-21. As one of only three of the five cars in private hands, it’s one of the rarest prancing horses on the planet, and will certainly eclipse the $4.4 million achieved by a ‘regular’ 288 GTO at RM Sotheby’s sale during Monterey Car Week. Just how high will the bids fly? —Nik Berg
The last Lamborghini Aventador has left the line
Intake: For just shy of 60 years there has always been an undiluted normally-aspirated V-12 engine in the Lamborghini catalog, but that all ends now as the final Aventador LP 780-4 Ultimae Roadster has rolled out of the Sant’ Agata Bolgnese factory. The Aventador has had a good run, though. Launched at the Geneva Motor Show in 2011 with 700 horsepower from its longitudinally-mounted motor driving all four wheels, the Aventador has seen eight different model derivatives, and more then ten one-off and special editions, including this last-of-the-line Ultimae. In total 11,465 Aventadors have been delivered to customers—more than than sum of all previous Lamborghini V-12s put together. Bidding a fond farewell, Stephan Winkelmann, Chairman and CEO of Lamborghini says, “The Lamborghini Aventador was a game-changer at its launch, and the flagship Lamborghini model for 11 years of production. The V12 engine has been part of Lamborghini’s heritage since the company’s earliest days; the beating heart of models from Miura to Diablo, Countach to Murciélago.” The successor to the Aventador will be a hybrid model with a 48-volt electric system supplementing the V-12 for the first time.
Exhaust: The very last Aventador Ultimae is destined for a customer in Switzerland, but among the final cars to be built will also have been 15 vehicles for American enthusiasts to replace those lost on the Felicty Ace cargo ship which sunk in March of this year. While we’re sad to see this era come to a close, we’re by no means surprised; despite the glorious exhaust note, this engine was bound to feel the squeeze from tightening emissions regulations worldwide. — NB
Champion driver Jimmie Johnson is calling it quits…again
Intake: Fresh off his first full season in the NTT IndyCar Series, the seven-time NASCAR Cup Series champ announced his retirement, yesterday, from full-time competition. “This was a difficult choice for me, but in my heart I know it’s the right one,” said Johnson, who steps away from the Carvana-backed Chip Ganassi IndyCar entry. “I’m not exactly sure what the next chapter holds, but if an opportunity comes along that makes sense I will consider it. I still have a bucket list of racing events I would like to take part in.” Ganassi chimed in, sharing that he is “fully supportive” of the Johnson’s decision. The duo first joined forces immediately following Johnson’s retirement from NASCAR to race a part-time Indy slate composed solely of road course events in 2021. This year, Johnson ran the entire season. And while his brief stint in the IndyCar series was dwarfed by the sheer scope and success of his 20-year career in NASCAR (where he earned a record-tying seven championships and 83 Cup Series wins), the IndyCar novice did enjoy some bright spots, like leading laps in his first Indy 500 and finishing a career-best fifth at Iowa, earlier this summer.
Exhaust: Considering the length of Johnson’s career in the Cup Series, I’m not sure that many predicted he would step away from full-time IndyCar competition after one year. The key phrase is, of course, full-time. It wouldn’t be a long shot to watch Johnson make another run at the Bricks next May for what would be his sophomore Indy 500. Or, perhaps, the Baja 1000. Johnson started his racing career in off-road trucks and buggies. A return to the sand would be incredibly similar to Robby Gordon—another pro driver who bookended a successful career in open-wheel and NASCAR with stints in desert jumpers. Where will Johnson go next? There may only be one man who knows that answer. — Cameron Neveu
Alpina breaks up with BMW’s 7 Series
Intake: Four decades years after Alpina first worked its luxurious, high-performance magic on BMW’s biggest sedan, the tuner has set aside the 7 Series. (So says the shop on Facebook, of all places.) Alpina’s first project based on BMW’s flagship four-door was 1977’s B8: a straight-six, naturally aspirated 733i hot-rodded with a higher-compression pistons and a more aggressive cam. A different exhaust, a limited-slip diff, and Bilstein suspension rounded out the mechanical upgrades, while the interior featured Recaro chairs and an Alpina shift knob and steering wheel. 16-inch wheels began a 20-spoke trend that Alpina continues to the present day. The B7 moniker first first appeared in 2004 on Alpina’s version of the E63-gen 7 Series, the shop’s first supercharged V-8 model. The B7 name will now end with Alpina’s version of the G12-generation 7 Series, essentially a 750Li (a long wheelbase model with the twin-turbo V-8) with more power, a reprogrammed transmission, and subtle but lavish aesthetic upgrades. As of the 2023 model year, the BMW factory’s 7 Series is king of the hill.
Exhaust: We’ve reached out to BMW for some additional context, because at first glance, this is a confusing move. We’d expect BMW, having acquired the erstwhile independent shop this year, to continue its 7 Series projects to appeal to traditionalists—and to offer a rival to the Mercedes-Maybach S-Class, which has made much of its upmarket ambitions. The most likely explanation is that Alpina customers who eschew SUVs (yes, Alpina also tunes those) prefer the B8 Gran Coupe. It’s less schnozy and more swoop-backed than the outgoing B7 … and the B8 moniker suggests Alpina has been pitching this 8 Series–based model as the true successor to that original B8 (never mind its 7 Series bones.) — Grace Houghton
Livewire Del Mar reservations go live along with SPAC listing
Intake: Two big steps for Livewire motorcycles both fall to today: reservations open for the new Del Mar model, and the new stock ticker LVWR will appear on the New York Stock Exchange. The Del Mar is the second bike under the Livewire name and the first to feature new scalable ARROW architecture with proprietary battery, motor, charging, and control systems. The Launch edition Del Mar sold out in just 18 minutes back in May, and regular production Del Mar bikes will ship immediately after the Launch Edition production is complete. Livewire is now the first publicly-traded electric motorcycle company now that the SPAC acquisition of Livewire by AEA-Bridges Impact Corp. is complete.
Exhaust: The Livewire One has been received well over the last two years, but it never fit the Harley brand, so the SPAC spin-off of Livewire was met with little surprise. How the company will hold up with limited support network and new models is yet to be seen, but the Del Mar appears to be a step in the right direction and the stats on it complement the One very nicely. — Kyle Smith