AC’s new V-8 Cobra, 900+ hp Raptor R, Gurney Eagle for sale

AC Cars

AC’s new Cobra GT will have a 654-hp V-8 bite

Intake: The most advanced Cobra ever is coming in 2023, says AC Cars—and, no, it’s not electric. Although the British sports car maker is building battery-powered versions of its most famous muscle car, the new Cobra GT will be powered by a 654-hp V-8 from an as-yet-unspecified manufacturer. AC describes it as a “revolution in design” for the 61-year-old model, with a longer wheelbase to provide a more spacious interior, an extruded aluminum spaceframe chassis, and a carbon fiber body. Available with a choice of six-speed manual or ten-speed automatic transmissions, AC claims the new GT will accelerate to 60 mph in 3.6 seconds and weigh in at under 3307 lbs. The car will also feature a number of creature comforts to make grand touring more enjoyable, from air conditioning and electric windows to in-car-entertainment and a removable hard top. More will be revealed in early 2023.

Exhaust: The year 2023 will be AC Cars’ 122nd anniversary, which technically makes it Britain’s oldest-surviving car maker. This isn’t a bad way to mark the occasion now, is it? — Nik Berg

Hennessey’s new VelociRaptoR is stupid powerful

Velociraptor 1000 Hennessey

Intake: In case 700 hp isn’t enough, Hennessey plans to offer a “VelociRaptoR 1000” that swaps the factory 2.65-liter supercharger atop the Shelby GT500-sourced 5.2-liter V-8 with a monster 3.8-liter blower. According to Hennessey, the new engine, “is anticipated to boast nearly 1,000 bhp and more than 850 lb-ft of torque”. The engine will also receive upgrades to the fuel system as well as new front and rear VelociRaptor bumpers, a front LED light bar, 20-inch Hennessey wheels, and 37-inch off-road tires, all in a package backed by a 2-year/24,000-mile Hennessey warranty.

Exhaust: We’re still getting over the fact that Ford will actually build a supercharged V-8 Raptor, so the thought of a 1,000hp truck is still tough to imagine. Raptor owners never seem shy about modifying their rides though, so Hennessey might have its hands full next year when it comes time to upfit the burly off-road pickup. Even though they won’t be built until next year, Hennessey is ready to take orders now. —Brandan Gillogly

There’s a Gurney Eagle headed to Mecum’s Kissimmee sale

Intake: Most any race car that was driven by Dan Gurney brings top dollar, so Mecum’s pre-sale estimate for this 1968 Eagle Offenhauser Indy Car—which Gurney drove to three IndyCar wins and a second-place finish in the 1968 Indianapolis 500—of $950,000 to $1.1 million may not be far off. Add to that the fact that it soon was acquired by the Leader Card team, and was also driven by Tom Sneva, Johnny Parsons, Mike Mosley, George Snider, and in the 1969 and 1970 Indy 500s, NASCAR star Lee Roy Yarbrough. It has a four-cylinder turbocharged Offenhauser engine, and a restoration by famed mechanic A.J. Watson. The car led many lives, and Watson restored it to its ’72 Indy 500 Vivitar livery when Mike Mosley led the field until a failed hub sent the car into the wall.

Exhaust: Some may argue that Watson should have restored the car back to Gurney’s 1968 Indy specifications, when it was powered by a Westlake Ford V-8, but the Offenhauser just seems right. I don’t care: I’d happily rearrange the living room and sit in my easy chair and just look at this car, one of the prettiest from one of the best-looking eras in IndyCar. The Mecum Kissimmee auction is January 4–15. — Steven Cole Smith

Jeep quietly phases V-8 out of two-row Grand Cherokee lineup

2023 Jeep Grand Cherokee Summit Reserve 4x4 exterior front three quarter

Intake: Jeep’s redesigned Grand Cherokee is an absolute stunner, but one of its best options, the 5.7-liter Hemi V-8, is no more. As first reported by Motor Authority, the Hemi has been quietly shown the exit halfway through the 2023 model year. Jeep Vice President Jim Morrison told Motor Authority in September of 2021 that the 357-hp, 390 lb-ft V-8’s time was limited, but we weren’t sure when exactly the $3295 option would meet its end. Now, your powertrain choices are the 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6, which makes 293 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque, or the plug-in hybrid 4xe powertrain, which pairs a 2-liter turbocharged four-cylinder with a 17-kWh battery and an electric motor to produce 375 hp and 470 lb-ft of peak torque. The hybrid powertrain is more powerful and far more efficient than the outgoing V-8. The V-8 was rated at 6200 lbs of towing capacity, while the hybrid is rated for 6000 lbs. The Hemi remains an option for the three-row Grand Cherokee L, but we don’t think that will last for long.

Exhaust: The unspoken expectation here is that Stellantis’ new Hurricane twin-turbo inline-six will eventually make its way into the Grand Cherokee and Grand Cherokee L models. The company’s engineers have said that the new six-pot will fit in any engine bay that currently features a longitudinally mounted engine, which the Grand Cherokee siblings do have. That engine is good for either 420 hp and 468 lb-ft of torque, or 510 hp and 500 lb-ft of torque, depending on which version of the engine you’re working with. Here’s to hoping that Jeep is readying that announcement soon—the new Grand Cherokee could be a legitimate BMW X5 competitor with the Hurricane motor. — Nathan Petroelje

Merry Driftmas says Girardo & Co

Intake: British classic and race car dealer Girardo & Co. has scaled up its annual Christmas video for 2022. Taking inspiration from every boy and girl racer’s favorite present, a Scalextric slot car set, the team pits a pair of full-size Subaru World Rally Cars against each other. The tinsel and reindeer antler-clad Scoobies are totally sideways as they parallel drift around the picturesque Trac Mon circuit in Angelsey, and it’s not just the asphalt that sees action as the green, green grass of Wales is torn up in this most excellent Xmas film. Who says you can’t be naughty and nice?

Exhaust: Girardo & Co. has been filming rally-themed festive fun since 2016 when it first sent a Lancia 037 to pick up a Christmas tree. From then on we’ve since WRC cars from Lancia, Audi, and Subaru, all driven to Xmas extremes. Check them all out on the firm’s YouTube channel. — NB


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