A new initiative by CarSwap where we compress a week’s worth of car news into the top five stories you should know about.
by Daniel Duke
1) Rolls-Royce Sweptail
Those mental craftsmen from Derby revealed a project they have been working on for the past four years for one very rich and very lucky customer. A homage to the swept-tail Roller’s from the 20’s and 30’s, the Sweptail looks part super coupe, part luxury yacht and despite its ginormous girth, can only seat two, albeit in absolute opulence. How much for the privilege of having Rolls-Royce custom build a car for you? How impetuous of you to ask, dear boy, but if you must know, USD$13 million is around the mark.
2) BMW 8-Series
Speaking of looking at the past to inspire your future, pictures of BMW’s upcoming 8 Series were leaked this week. The BMW-ophiles among you remember the svelte super coupe with popup headlights from the early 90’s. The modern car is similarly sleek and sophisticated, and will be pitched up against the Mercedes S Class Coupe and Bentley Continental GT, and is rumoured to include an M model in its model line-up. Noice M8!
3) Mazda’s rotary turns 50
To paraphrase Forrest Gump, ‘Mazda’s and rotaries go together like peas and carrots.’ This week, they have been celebrating 50 years of their use of Felix Wankel’s rotary engine. While NSU were the first to use rotaries, Mazda popularised the engine with its lightweight sports cars. Mazda’s first rotary was seen in 1967 with the Jetson’s-esque Mazda Cosmo, and used it in production until emissions regulations killed off the RX8 in 2012. Mazda continues to drop hints of a rotary revival, but it’s looking likely they will be used in conjunction with electric powertrains for econoboxes rather than an RX prefixed performance model to shove one up the Nissan GTR and Honda NSX. Boo.
4) Fernando Alonso’s Indy Debut
The Formula 1 ace raised eyebrows earlier this year when he turned his nose up at the Monaco Grand Prix to go race at Indy in a McLaren-Honda-Andretti. But how did he go? Quite well actually, he qualified a remarkable seventh and even led the race for 27 laps. That was until a familiar McLaren-Honda problem befell the luckless Spaniard with just 21 laps to go – his car suffered engine failure and he was forced to retire. Alonso’s teammate and former F1 pilot, Takuma Sato, ended up winning the race.
5) Subaru BRZ STI
Subaru sent fans into a frenzy on their Instagram this week with a picture of an STI branded rear wing on the back of a BRZ ahead of a June 8 release. What they’re releasing is still a mystery, but Toyota 86/Subaru BRZ fanboys have been praying to the turbo gods for a high performance model ever since its inception. Could this mean the plucky little sports car will finally get the power its chassis has always deserved?