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Friday
Feb022018

Notes of Note: 2/2/18

News, facts, and other stuff clogging our e-mail system

Land Rover will launch a new full-size luxury SUV, the Range Rover SV Coupe, at Geneva in March. Like the original 1970 Range Rover, the SV Coupe will be a two-door, but — unlike that vehicle — it will be hand-built at the company’s SV Technical Center will be in Ryton-on-Dunsmore in Warwickshire, U.K. Global production will be limited to no more than 999 vehicles.

Since the launch is more than one month in the future, Land Rover has refrained from tipping its hand too early and releasing drawings or photos of the SV Coupe’s exterior. Instead, it offered an overhead shot of the interior, which shows the dramatic “white-to-black” color shift from front to rear, diamond-pattern stitching on the seats and center arm rests, and striking horizontal woodgrain on the flow-through console.

When Hyundai Motor America established its Genesis Motor America subsidiary, it was only a matter of time before the pair announced that they would be creating a standalone dealer network for Genesis. Hyundai dealers have been told that a Genesis-only retail network is in the offing, and that those dealers who had signed the Genesis Participation Agreement and are currently doing business in key defined markets, will have the first chance to apply for a standalone Genesis franchise. The process will then be opened to existing Hyundai franchisees.

Initially, the network of dealers — expected to reach 100 by the end of 2018 — will work from temporary and/or shared facilities, with the standalone dealerships completed over the following three years. The Genesis brand sold 20,594 G80, G80 Sport and G90 sedans in the U.S., and this number is expected to rise with the addition of the G70 small sedan later this year. Further additions include a pair of crossovers, as well as — at some point in the future — a sports car.

Just a week after debuting the 2019 Ram 1500 to the assembled media at the Detroit Auto Show, FCA announced the Laramie Longhorn Edition, the brand’s luxury entry in the light-duty full-size pickup market. They’ll be easy to spot as the Laramie Longhorn Edition comes in standard two-tone RV Match Walnut Brown or monotone paint, has LED head- and tail lamps, and unique wheels and grilles.

The real design work, however, is on the inside. There you will find embossed leather that uses an alligator skin pattern, a 100% full-grain leather hand-wrapped instrument panel, real barn wood accents, contrast piping on the Mountain Brown/Light Mountain Brown or Black/Cattle Tan full-leather seats, satin chrome accents, the Longhorn badge burned into the wood-trimmed upper glovebox door and more. And just so you don’t get homesick on the range, the Laramie Longhorn Edition also offers a 4G WiFi hot spot, SiriusXM 360, SiriusXM Guardian, five USB ports, and a 12-in. touchscreen. Now that’s roughin’ it.


Dave Martin’s Martin Special, a 1931 Ford Roadster, took the “America’s Most Beautiful Roadster” title at the 69th annual Grand National Roadster Show at the Fairplex in Pomona, CA. The car was built by Hot Rods & Hobbies of Signal Hill, CA., Martin received a 9.5-ft. tall trophy and $10,000, and now joins those of previous winners like George Barris, Andy Brizio, Boyd Coddington, Barry White, Troy Ladd and Chip Foose.

Before becoming an award-winning hot rod, the Martin Special competed in the Silver State Classic road race. Rather than ignore this part of its history, Martin and the team at Hot Rods & Hobbies incorporated it into the design, adding a 500 hp Ed Pink Racing Engines small block and design cues common to historic Indy roadsters, while preserving the clean lines and subtle detailing of the original Ford design.

One of the stars of the Silverstone Auctions Race Retro Classic Car Sale is a right-hand driver 1965 Ferrari 330 GT 2+2, one of just 44 built in this drive configuration. Pre-auction estimates suggest chassis #6875, painted in its original Grigio Argento, will cross the block for £160,000 to £190,000 ($226,623 - $269,115) the weekend of February 23-25.

Drawn by American Tom Tjaarda during his years at Pininfarina, the 330 GT was the fastest road-going Ferrari when it was launched in 1964, its 300 hp 4.0-liter V12 propelling it from 0-60 in 6.3 seconds. The 330 GT 2+2 replaced the 330 America in Ferrari’s lineup, had a 2.0-in. longer wheelbase, and featured quad headlights that gave it an aggressively refined look. Unfortunately, the Series 1 was succeeded by the Series 2 in 1965, when the four-light front end was replaced with a longer and smoother two-light front clip. Its greater rarity, combined with the passage of time, has made the Series 1 a sought-after model

In 1970, Peter Connew, a designer at Team Surtees, left to build his own F1 car. This was the era of the so-called garagistes; a term coined by Enzo Ferrari meant to denigrate those who grabbed a Cosworth DFV and Hewland transaxle off the shelf, and plugged them into a chassis provided by companies like March, or of their own design. Connew began work on the design late that year, and the car was completed in spring 1972.

While Connew slaved over the design, his cousin Barry Boor — a woodworker by trade — made the bodywork, and friend Roger Doran acted as chief mechanic. The budget was tiny — the car was powered by a used Cosworth DFW bought from McLaren and mated to a Hewland gearbox. It failed to enter the French GP, had problems that prevented it from qualifying for the British race, and was barred from the German Grand Prix. However, it qualified for the Austrian race, but retired on the 22nd lap with suspension failure. The late David Purley was set to drive the car at the season ending race at Brands Hatch, and Purley paid to have the engine rebuilt for the race. Unfortunately, problems with the steering wheel-mounted kill switch he requested forced the Connew to retire on the warm-up lap. That ended the car’s F1 career but, after a brief and forgettable time in Formula 5000, it eventually returned to Peter Connew’s garage.

Over the past two years, the original team of Connew, Boor and Doran completed a full restoration of the car. Motorsport historian Doug Nye donated the Cosworth DFV, while Hall & Hall provided a Hewland gearbox. And the completed car, along with the men that built it, will be a feature of the Motor Sport Hall of Fame Live show that is part of Race Retro. Held at Stoneleigh Park, Warwickshire, the racing show also will celebrate the40th anniversary of the ground-effects era, 30 years of Jaguar at Le Mans and more. It runs from February 23-25.

This is the first official rendering of the 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe. The crossover is set to debut at the Geneva Motor Show in March, and sets the tone for Hyundai’s new SUV design language. According to the release that accompany the photo, this includes a “magnificent frontal section” that introduces a “large cascading grille complimented by a separate headlight system featuring divided daytime running lights and main lamps. Combined they create a [sic] unique, futuristic look.” Apparently, the “simple yet sleek roofline” and the side character line that runs from the headlights to taillights “merge to form a harmonious look and feel.” With luck, the actual vehicle will have more substance than the words describing it.

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