Afternoon Break: Supercars on Stelvio Pass

Today, Dashboard brings you a video from Evo magazine. For three minutes, you can imagine yourself free from traffic, inattentive drivers, and worries on one of the world’s best driving roads in some of the world’s best cars.

Source: Evo

  

New 911 Uncovered

The new 911 is set to launch next year, and now we have our best look yet on whats to come. Visually, not much will change over the last generation, the 997. The new 911, code-named 991, will feature shorter overhangs, the addition of the ever-trendy LED running lights, redesigned headlights, and overall smoothing of the bodywork.

Not much is known about what will be under the hood, but estimates claim that the motor will be a 3.4 liter boxer 6, with around 340hp. Also, the 911 will have a longer wheelbase and a more Panameresque interior. The wheelbase change is significant since Porsche is trying to make the 911 roomier on the inside, and more stable to drive. Hopefully, these changes will not change the 911’s driving dynamics too much.

The new 911 is set to debut at this year’s Frankfurt Auto show.

  

Porsche 550 Revival

Reports from British car magazine Autocar state that Porsche is inspired by the 550 Spyder for their newest sports car. This will be the new entry level Porsche, and slot in under the Boxster. The 500 Spyder is one of Porsche’s most iconic models, and was incredibly important in putting Porsche on the map with gentleman racers and celebrities, including James Dean, who died in one. Its successor was non other than the 911. It is a strong claim then to affix such a lofty target for the entry level Porsche.

Porsche boss Matthias Mueller goes on further to explain the type of engine we will see when this car debuts:

The Porsche is expected to be based on a new mid-engined aluminium and steel platform being developed by Audi which will also be used for the proposed Audi R4 roadster.

The Porsche will probably from £35,000 slotting in underneath the next-generation Boxster, which will grow notably in size and cost. The car will get a new four-cylinder boxer engine that will also power the Boxster, the Cayman and potentially even the 911. Sources say the flat four motor is sized at 2.5-litres and has been producing around 360bhp in turbocharged form.

Let’s hope this project is a larger sales success than the last Audi engineered Porsche, the 944. However, if they are shooting for the 500 Spyder as a spiritual target, my bets are on Porsche getting this car right, even with a turbo-4.

For the full Autocar article, follow this link.

  

Vintage Rally Goodness

Make sure to take a peek at the video above to see the cobwebs being shaken off some historic rally stars. Shot at this year’s Vintage Acroplois Rally in Greece, the video features everything from old Porsches to Group B rally monsters.

10th Historic Acropolis Rally

  

“The Car Show” Review

Quick, what’s the newest car show with male hosts and car related stunts? If you answered Top Gear USA, you are wrong. The real answer is the imaginatively titled The Car Show on the Speed Channel every Wednesday at 10/9c. The formula is familiar: male hosts, studio audience, car themed stage, and car stunts. But was it any good? I found out firsthand last night after tuning in for the debut.

The series premier consisted of a cheap car race challenge, a game show segment with an audience member, an obligatory NASCAR interview with Jimmie Johnson, a current news segment, a Porsche GT3 RS speed run, and a Rolls-Royce Ghost test at Pebble Beach. The segments were fairly decent with merely “ok” cinematography and presentation. Playful banter and jokes between hosts were above average, and cars were criticized pretty hard if they warranted it. However, because there were so many segments, each one felt rushed and incomplete in order to squeeze in the others. The Rolls Royce test and the cheap car race challenge in particular had you wishing that they dedicated more time for them instead of a dull interview with Mr. Beige himself, Jimmie Johnson.

Adam Carolla definitely carried this first episode. His sarcastic remarks and deprecating remarks towards the hosts, himself, and the show lifted the entertainment value well ahead of Top Gear USA. However, Matt Farah (of fastlanedaily.com) and Dan Neil (Wall Street Journal Car Critic) both had their moments as well. And that brings me to the biggest problem of The Car Show: John Salley.

A former NBA star, fourth host Salley seemed like he was on his way to another show and wandered into a The Car Show taping. The man has no knowledge of cars whatsoever or endearing personality traits. First, on discussion of the new Porsche Supercar, he made the comment that it was “just a Porsche.” Weird, but maybe he is so rich he buys a Porsche every day for his dogs to eat out of. However, that hypothesis was quashed with this comment during a Toyota conversation:

“Toyota makes a good car. I drive a Corolla.”

So not only does he knock Porsche, but he holds up a Toyota Corolla as a great car; on a car enthusiast’s program. Knocking Porsche is fine, but purchasing a Toyota Corolla is THE cardinal sin in the religion of cardom. John Salley’s opinions are now null and void if he drives the most boring and beige car imaginable.

Other than Mr. Salley’s complete lack of car knowledge and screen presence, The Car Show shows a lot of promise. As the season progresses, the hosts’ chemistry will improve and Adam Carolla will get even funnier as well. If they find a way to focus more on less segments, this show could be better than Top Gear USA. We will see what Top Gear USA has to offer soon since they debut on Sunday at 10/9c on History. But seriously, above all else, get rid of John Salley. Three’s a party, but adding a fourth member who drives a Toyota Corolla is an incredibly boring crowd.

To see what time The Car Show televises in your area, check your local listings, or The Car Show’s website.

  

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