2017 Global Mazda MX-5 Cup Challenge AnnouncedMazda Motorsports has announced open registration for the 2017 Global Mazda MX-5 Cup Challenge to be held on October 12th to the 15th. The two-race event will be held at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, and features a $110,00 prize pool to be shared among the top three placeholders. The pool is split three-ways, with $75,000 going to the first-place racer, $25,000 to second, and $10,000 to third. The race is open to all racecar drivers around the world, excluding those who drive for the Mazda Motorsport’s factory efforts. This race has become the one time of the year that there is a truly international race which is sponsored and supported by Mazda, with 8 countries represented on the line during last year’s race. Drivers must have an INDYCAR racing license, as that is the normal governing board for MX-5 racing, and the rules mirror that of normal MX-5 Cup races. The event will consist of two, 45-minute track sessions, where points are rewarded based on place.
Registration is now available, with rental Cup racers surely being available to international contestants.
Williams Tapped by Singer to Engineer 500hp, Air-Cooled Flat-Six
Singer is a company best known for creating the best air-cooled Porsche 911 Restoration/Resto-mod/Amazing/Tribute cars out there, and their prices of over a half million dollars reflect this reputation. Now, customers will have another money-consuming option to ponder, as it is reported that the company has enlisted Williams Engineering of F1 fame to develop a 500hp, 4.0L, air-cooled flat-six engine. This engine—which matches the output of a modern, water-cooled GT3RS—is based on a 3.6L Metzger engine out of a 1990 911, which makes the power numbers even more impressive considering the power-sapping, belt-driven cooling fan the engine relies on. While the pictures above—gorgeous, aren’t they—are only renderings, a physical example is expected to be installed in a customer’s car by September.
While no pricing has been announced, expect Singer cars powered by Williams to crest a million dollars.
Porsche Steps Up Over GT3 Engine ConcernsAs Jeremy Clarkson liked to remind Richard Hammond—who had ordered one—the Porsche 991.1 911 GT3 did not have an auspicious start; the first 785 cars had to be taken from customers and given replacement engines due to engine fires. After this, more troubles seemed to be on the horizon as some owners began to notice misfires at high RPMs, which lead a US-based group of “Concerned Owners” to send a letter to Porsche, asking to discuss the problems they were experiencing. In a surprising move, Porsche agreed to meet with them, and held the meeting at its North America Headquarters, even going so far as to fly the head of Porsche Motorsport, Dr. Frank-Steffen Walliser out to address the owner’s concerns.
After the meeting, Porsche announced that all owners of a 991.1 GT3 produced from 2014-2016—regardless of country or ‘first/second’ owner nonsense—would be eligible for a 120,000 mile/10-year engine warranty, whichever comes first. As they know what the misfire problem is—a result of the cars not being driven hard enough—they must be confident that they rest of the engine is bulletproof. Only some engines are effected with the misfire issue, and a new, improved engine has been developed. Eligible warranty claims will receive a full replacement engine, rather than the top-end rebuild previously used to solve the problem. This warranty is the longest in the industry, and as Rob Carr, ‘Concerned Owner’ leader claims, they did not ask for such a warranty, with Porsche announcing it on their own.
Good on you Porsche.
Ford Begins Repairing Police Interceptor UtilityFord has come under fire recently for a spate of loss-of-consciousness caused accidents suffered by officers driving their new Explorer-based Police Interceptor Utility vehicles, which the company has identified as a carbon monoxide leak, whose source was unknown. Ford engineers are on the ground at precincts across the country examining and repairing effected vehicles, and while no conclusive problem can be named, a common finding is a carbon monoxide leak from the rear-trunk area, caused by the drilling of electrical wire access holes for the installation of after-factory equipment such as lightbars and radios. This aftermarket holes are then improperly sealed, leading to the gasses seeping into the cabin.
Ford announced that they will gladly perform any and all necessary repairs for free, even with cases caused by after-factory equipment installations.
BMW i8 Roadster May Debut at L.A. Auto ShowFor the past three years, BMW has assumedly been working on the long-rumored i8 convertible. Per new industry rumors, BMW has succeeded in engineering the top off of their hybrid sports car, and the i8 Roadster will debut at the L.A. International Auto Show to be held this December. From spy shots, it looks like the convertible will not be traditional; instead, featuring a strange quasi-Targa type top. The car has long been expected, but the rumors seem to be true, as investors were told earlier this year that an i8 Roadster could be expected by 2018. The Roadster will feature some minor visual changes, although the outside will feature minor changes.
Front-Drive BMW in America: Coming SoonPer a report from Automotive News BMW is considering bringing the front-wheel drive 1-Series to American shores. While it was originally thought that the car would be solely for the Chinese market, BMW is looking at the 1-Series as a cost-savings measure to bring a car to compete with Mercedes upcoming $30k A-Class. While the move will surely anger fans, the majority of Americans will likely not care, and be grateful for the chance to own a BMW, much like my wife is. The platform is not unfamiliar to American roads as it underpins the Mini Countryman and BMW X1 already available here.
No date has been confirmed, but customers can expect it by 2019.
I recently recieved a degree in History from the University of Nevada, Reno.