Ultra-rare GT-R eyes world record, Stellantis angers UAW, Brabus’ 900-hp SUV

Collecting Cars

World’s most expensive GT-R?

Intake: A regular old Skyline GT-R isn’t special, you say? It’s not rare enough, powerful enough, or even expensive enough? Well, the time for excuses is over. Collecting Cars announced that it will be offering the last known R33-generation NISMO 400R. Currently residing in the U.K., this Skyline GT-R could become one of the most expensive Japanese cars ever sold at auction. A blue-chip collector vehicle that is rarely seen at public auction, the 400R has been widely considered to be the ultimate factory GT-R. Stuffed with tech from Nissan’s Le Mans program, the 400R is dripping in carbon fiber and titanium and propelled by a 2.8-liter, twin-turbo straight-six engine that makes 400 horsepower, supercar-level power for the mid-1990s. Just 40 were built, which means these have the perfect combination of lore and rarity to easily become seven-figure automobiles. The catch? Unless you’re a dealer, the ability to bid or even to know the final price of a 400R is extremely limited.  In fact, one recently auctioned crashed the bidding system when the bid exceeded the system’s numerical limits; final bidding was conducted privately, however the reported sale was over $1.1 million. A second, the only Champion Blue example built, sold for an undisclosed amount, reportedly smashing that record.

Exhaust: The fact that a 400R is being offered at all is a big deal, and the fact that it is being offered for public auction—rather than private sale—outside of Japan is an even bigger one. Since this very car was offered for sale last year at Harlow-Jap-Autos (HJA) with an ask of $2.2 million (£1.6 million), it’s guaranteed that if this car meets reserve, it will be well past the $1 million mark. The bigger question is how high it will go. —Greg Ingold

Modern Lambo tractor is only for the raciest of ranchers

Lamborghini Centenario Tractor
Classic Driver

Intake: The 40 owners of Lamborghini’s 2016 Centenario might well think they got something pretty exclusive to mark 100 years since the birth of Ferruccio Lamborghini in 2016, but Adler Capelli’s tractor tributes are even more scarce. The Italian artist assembled just five customized creations that harken to Lamborghini’s roots in farm equipment, and now one is for sale at Classic Driver. Number four of five, the vehicle is a combination of two 1960s tractors, the DLA35 and the 2R DT. It’s finished in unpainted metal which has been left to age over time and is powered by a 2.2-liter three-cylinder diesel engine, complete with six striking side pipes. It could be yours for around $540,000.

Exhaust: The Aventador-based Centenario will show well on the lawn of any concours, but with this tractor version you could actually mow the grass before putting it in show. —Nik Berg

Lamborghini Centenario Brandan Gillogly

Stellantis offers buyouts to 33,500 workers; UAW calls move “disgusting”

Stellantis Logo buyout uaw news

Intake: One month after 5000 white-collar workers accepted a voluntary buyout offer from General Motors, Stellantis NV has made a similar offer to 31,000 hourly workers in the United States and Canada and to an additional 2500 U.S. salaried employees. The Detroit News reported that “the company is looking to reduce its hourly workforce by as many as 3500 employees in response to increased market competition and the shift to electrification.” Stellantis, maker of Jeep SUVs, Ram pickup trucks, and other vehicles, says its first-quarter sales in the U.S. fell 9 percent year-over-year, and executives have cautioned that more uncertainty is looming in the latter half of 2023 due to rising inflation and interest rates.

Exhaust: While Stellantis says a reduction in its workforce is necessary to counteract reduced sales and a backlog of inventory, the company is investing $35.5 billion into electrification and software by 2025 in an effort to launch 25 all-electric vehicles for the U.S. market by 2030, a fact that hasn’t gone unnoticed by United Auto Workers President Shawn Fain. “Stellantis’ push to cut thousands of jobs while raking in billions in profits is disgusting,” Fain said in a statement. “This is a slap in the face to our members, their families, their communities, and the American people who saved this company 15 years ago.” Be prepared for more fireworks if fewer than 3500 workers accept the offer, and Stellantis responds with layoffs. — Jeff Peek

Need 900 hp in your Benz SUV? Brabus has got you

Intake: Brabus, the rowdy German tuner best known for taking Mercedes-AMG products and cranking the insanity up to 15, has announced a new beast. Meet the Brabus 900 Superblack, a murdered-out, tuned-to-the-moon version of the Mercedes-AMG GLS 63. For the 900 Superblack, Brabus took the 4.0-liter twin-turbo V-8 and increased the engine’s displacement to 4.5 liters. The mill is known as the Rocket, and with the help of new turbos, now makes a whopping 900 horsepower and 922 lb-ft of torque. That’s 297 more hp and 295 lb-ft more torque than the engine in a base GLS 63. The added grunt can shove this behemoth to 62 mph from a standstill in just 3.6 seconds and allow the car to hit a claimed top speed of 205 mph. Inside, you’ll find scores of “seashell diamond” leather fitted to the seats, and special shadow-gray dash trim and switchgear. All this madness will cost you somewhere in the realm of $500,000, and orders are open now.

Exhaust: Are gains of nearly 300 hp and 300 lb-ft of torque worth well over double the price of a base Mercedes-AMG GLS 63? Price probably isn’t the right measuring stick here. For a vehicle already steeped in excess, the Brabus Superblack 900 is simply more of everything—like, a lot more. And that’s the point. — Nathan Petroelje

Radical’s SR1 gains 17 hp, big fin

Intake: Radical Motorsport, the UK’s largest race car manufacturer, has today confirmed the most extensive set of updates to its entry-level car, the SR1, in six years. Since the model’s inception in 2012, the SR1 has been the favorite of hundreds of drivers as an entry-level pro racer. In the 11 years since the SR1’s introduction, Radical Motorsport has expanded its global race offering to 12 international race series. Highlights of the update are that the car, now called the SR1 XXR, gets a central LMP-inspired “fin” as standard, and will be fitted with a new, 199-hp engine, the Generation 5, 1.3-liter power unit from Radical’s bespoke engine facility. Previously it had a 182-horse, RPE-Suzuki four-cylinder.

Exhaust: Said James Pinkerton, Radical Motorsport’s Head of Research and Development: “The SR1 will always be special to me, as I’ve witnessed first-hand how approachable it is for drivers wanting to take the step up in their racing careers. Although an entry-level racer, the SR1 XXR offers an outstanding package with unparalleled performance for the money, that will get you on the grid in a professionally administered race series. “ — Steven Cole Smith

Hyundai drops $5 billion on U.S. battery plant

2023 Hyundai Ioniq 6 Limited red rear hatch brake light design
Hyundai/Drew Phillips

Intake: Hyundai Motor Group has announced plans to set up an electric-vehicle battery-cell-production joint-venture in the U.S. with partner SK On. The total investment amount is expected to be approximately $5 billion. The plant will be in Bartow County, Georgia, close to the Group’s U.S. production facilities, including Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama and Kia Georgia.

Exhaust: The new plant is expected to start manufacturing battery cells in the second half of 2025 with an annual production capacity sufficient to support the production of 300,000 EVs. Hyundai Mobis, the parts and service arm of Hyundai Motor Company, will assemble battery packs using cells from the plant, then supply them to the Group’s U.S. manufacturing facilities for the production of Hyundai, Kia, and Genesis EV models. — SCS


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    What ass should be gracing that lovely Lambo Tractor seat?? Lets all hope its Jeremy Clarkson, would be truly entertaining!

    I love that GT-R but it’s going to go for way too much money.

    Stellantis (use as directed) is offering buyouts? I’d say take them the EV future will mean less workers in the future for all car manufacturers. Isn’t everything so much rosier in the EV future?

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