Tag Archives: Porsche

24 Hours of Daytona Begins Today

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The debut of the new Tudor United Sports Car Championship begins today at 2:10 pm ET with the 52nd Rolex 24 at Daytona. You can follow the action on various TV channels throughout the 24 hour event or watch online. This year’s 24 Hours of Daytona begins a new era in sports car racing as the Grand Am Series and American Le Mans Series combined to form one united series. With 65 entries, this will be one of the largest 24 Hours of Daytona ever.

The new series is comprised is four classes of cars:

Prototype (P): The prototypes are the top tier teams from both the Grand Am and American LeMans Series. Some of the cars in this class include the Nissan DeltaWing, Ford EcoBoost, and the Corvette Daytona Prototype.

Prototype Challenge (PC): PC is a spec class that is a carry over from the American Le Mans Series. The series features cars built by Oreca with engines supplied by Chevrolet and tires from Continental.

GT Le Mans (GTLM): This GT LeMans class is a direct carry over from the American Le Mans Series. Cars in this class include the Corvette C7.R, Ferrari 458, SRT Viper, Porsche 911, and BMW Z4. All cars in this class must follow the Automobile Club de l’Ouest’s GTE specification.

GT Daytona (GTD): The GTD class combines the Grand-Am GT & GX classes with the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars from the American Le Mans GTC class.  GTD is by far the largest class and features 29 cars.

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I am looking forward to the new series as it allows the best teams of both series to compete against each other for the same championship. For a full run down of all 65 entries, I highly recommend the article posted by RennSport which describes the new series and includes images of each car. You can also follow live scoring here.

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2013 24 Hours of Le Mans Wrap-Up

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The 2013 24 Hours of Le Mans is in the books, and it produced exciting racing right down to the final hour. The headlines going into the 24 hour race was Audi vs. Toyota in LM P1 and the return of the SRT Viper in LM GTE Pro. While the Audi vs. Toyota battles were great, the Viper story was not as great. Both Viper’s finished the race, but they finished 8th and 9th. The Vipers pitted more often than most teams leading me to believe the V10s were very thirsty. Team Corvette did not have a great day either finishing 4th and 7th.

The death of Aston Martin driver Allan Simonsen early in the race left a somber feeling in the garage area, but the race continued. Team Aston Martin did well with car #97 finishing 3rd in LM GTE Pro.

The overall winner of the race, and winners of LM P1, was the #2 Audi. This was Audi’s fourth overall win in a row and their twelfth overall win. Drivers of the #2 car were Tom Kristensen, Allan McNish, and Loic Duval. The win was Kristensen’s ninth career win at Le Mans. They were followed by the #8 Toyota and #3 Audi. In LM P2, The #35 Morgan Nissan won followed by the #24 Morgan Nissan and the #26 Oreca Nissan.

In LM GTE Pro the #92 Porsche 911 RSR followed by their teammates in the #91 Porsche 911 RSR. The #97 Aston Martin Vantage V8 rounded out the top 3. And in LM GTE Am, the #76 Porsche 911 GT3 RSR won followed by the #55 Ferrari 458 Italia and the #61 Ferrari 458 Italia.

For the full results of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, click here.

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24 Hours of Le Mans Reaches Half Way

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The 81st running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans just passed 12 hours. The first half of the race has provided some great racing, and, unfortunately, tragedy. Aston Martin’s Allan Simonsen died as a result of injuries received in a crash on the fourth lap of the race. Team Aston Martin has continued to race at the request of his family. They currently lead in LM GTE Pro.

With 12 hours remaining, there is still a lot of racing to go. They are now in the night phase of the race and will have plenty of daylight tomorrow before the race is complete. The SRT and Corvette teams are struggling, but there is a long way to go. You can follow along on SPEED or access the full leader board by clicking here.

The current top 5 in each racing group are as follows:

LM P1

1. #2 Audi

2. #8 Toyota

3. #7 Toyota

4. #3 Audi

5. #13 Lola Toyota

LM P2

1. #35 Morgan – Nissan

2. #24 Morgan – Nissan

3. #38 Zytek – Nissan

4. #42 Zytek – Nissan

5. #46 Oreca – Nissan

LM GTE Pro

1. #99 Aston Martin V8 Vantage

2. #92 Porsche 911 RSR

3. #97 Aston Martin V8 Vantage

4. #91 Porsche 911 RSR

5. #51 Ferrari 458

LM GTE Am

1. #76 Porsche 911 GT3

2. #55 Ferrari 458

3. #61 Ferrari 458

4. #77 Porsche 911 GT3

5. #88 Porsche 911 GT3

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Ferdinand Alexander Porsche (1935-2012)

Today the automotive world lost an iconic designer. Ferdinand Alexander Porsche, grandson of Porsche and Volkswagen founder Ferdinand Porsche, is famous for designing the original 911 (above). Although I am not a big Porsche or 911 fan, I understand the importance of the 911 to the automotive world. The car debuted in 1963 and has been a global best seller ever since. Porche is often criticized for its lack of innovation with the 911 as it has had a similar form factor since 1963 and has always been rear engined. Nevertheless, it is has been an important car. Interestingly, the 911 was not his favorite design. That honor belongs to the 1964 Porsche 904 racer (below). The 904 is a beautiful car. Ferdinand Alexander Porsche was a great designer and he will be missed.

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Detroit Auto Show: Production Car Roundup

The North American International Auto Show kicked off this week with major product unveils from Ford, General Motors, and Toyota. This post, a first in a two part series, will explore the production models that were unveiled in Detroit this week.

The Sunday before the Auto Show, Dodge and Cadillac announced their much anticipated new models. Dodge unveiled the 2013 Dodge Dart with its Alfa Romeo platform and economic engine options. Cadillac, on the other hand, announced the 2013 Cadillac ATS, a car it hopes will compete head on with the BMW 3-Series. This is a lofty goal as the 3-Series is hailed as the ultimate sports sedan.

2013 Ford Fusion

Ford began Monday morning’s show with the all new 2013 Ford Fusion. Ford surprised the crowd by announcing that the Fusion would be available in 3 models: standard gasoline (with three engine options), hybrid, and electric. The design of the Fusion incorporates Ford’s new,  agressive, grille and the Fusion is a major part of the current “One Ford” strategy. This car is my favorite from the show and is likely to shake up the mid-sized car segment with its range of engine options and its impressive technology packages.

Other production models unveiled at the show included the 2013 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid, 2013 Mercedes-Benz SLDodge Charger Redline, 2013 Chevrolet Sonic RS, 2012 Porsche 911 Carrera Cabriolet, 2013 Lexus LX 570, 2013 Acura RDX, 2013 Hyundai Veloster Turbo, 2013 Hyundai Genesis Coupe, Bentley Continental GT V8, 2013 Mini Roadster, Audi A4 Allroad, Volvo XC60 Plug-In HybridBuick EncoreToyota Prius C, and the 50th Anniversary Edition Shelby Mustangs.

Unfortunately, I do not have the space to give my impressions of all of the models, but I will highlight a few. The major unveils from list include the all new Buick Encore. A small SUV from Buick (who wants that?!). In addition, the Hyundai Genesis Coupe received a facelift and a series of new engines, but it is still not powerful enough to compete with Mustang or Camaro. The Toyota Prius C is expected to cost less than $19,000, being the cheapest hybrid on the market.

From the production models, however, we see that the auto industry is, once again, very healthy. Tomorrow I will post an article on the concept models from Detroit.

If you get a chance to visit the Detroit Auto Show, the show will be open to the public through January 22. If not, check out the reviews of each car listed above by clicking the link (will take you to Autoblog). Also, be sure to check out the gallery below.

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