You can imagine the conversation that led to the inaugural Coventry Motofest taking place in 2014. A group of petrolheads got together and decided it’d be fun, for one weekend a year, to take over the city of Coventry with motoring-related activities. Could they show off the city’s motoring heritage, display classic cars in the centre and even hold demonstrations on the ring road? Turns out, yes they could. It’s definitely worth a visit.
Mike built a new rear frame section, then started designing a tail piece. “I need to give credit to Cliff Meyer for building the rear cowl out of aluminum,” he says. “I sent him a cardboard template, but my aluminum welding and sheet metal skills weren’t up to par at the time.”
In addition to building some pretty sweet bikes, An-Bu manufacture parts. This K’s sporting a seat from the catalogue, and the front fairing is a prototype. The latter’s kitted with an offset light in a custom-made aluminum surround. Peak behind the fairing, and the cockpit is delightfully busy; it features a tacho, speedo, water temperature and fuel gauges, and a smartphone mount with a USB connection. There’s plenty hand-made goodness to take in—like the custom battery mount, and the four-into-one exhaust system. The glossy black paint job (and tasteful silver striping) was the client’s idea—a nod to BMW’s classic color schemes. [ More ]
“On top of the cost of shipping the cars from say from Dubai via Djibouti, we have to deal with multiple taxes to the government, making this one of the toughest businesses to be in, even though it’s seen as lucrative.”
Crisscrossing North America, Europe and most of Asia, Tesla’s Supercharger network has finally made long-distance electric car travel practical and affordable, but come January 14, Tesla will end its free, unlimited Supercharger policy for all new Model S and Model X cars. As we detailed recently, anyone purchasing a new Tesla Model S or Model X after that point will find themselves restricted to just 400 kilowatt-hours of free Supercharger use per year (equivalent to 1,000 miles of free travel). And while Tesla customers who fall under the new rules will be able to purchase additional Supercharger credits in order to continue to use the Supercharger network at an as-yet unannounced cost, only those who already own their Tesla will be able to make take advantage of Tesla’s free, unlimited Supercharging.
On the road, the base 2.5-liter engine and 8-speed automatic didn’t feel all that fast. A demand for greater acceleration produced a pause followed by two and sometimes three downshifts before the car surged ahead. This is regrettably common now in new cars whose transmissions have more than six gears, and the Camry is far from the worst culprit, but neither did the 4-cylinder prove all that responsive. The V-6, on the other hand, delivered smooth, fast power in virtually any situation, and seemed to require fewer downshifts. It’s the engine to have if you want power, though it’ll cost you in fuel economy.
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The i8 is a very different take on a two-door sports car, and its looks are easily as groundbreaking as the power concept. The i8 borrows many cues from a recent concept that was itself an homage to the M1 supercar. There is also design language and some specific elements shared with the i3 EV that’s launching alongside it, but the two are strikingly different. Where the i3 five-door is tall and large inside, with a stubby footprint, the i8 is low, sleek, and sexy, with beautiful flowing details along its flanks that culminate in a cantilevered wave over the rear haunches. The i3, on the other hand, is meant to move people and stuff in comfort throughout urban areas, packing an underfloor battery that will allow 80-100 miles of EV driving per charge.
The EcoBoost is no GT substitute, though it does give us permission to ignore the base V-6. And yet it’s still a Mustang that will require some getting used to. It can crack off 0-60 mph times of less than six seconds, but its power delivery and most of all, its acoustic delivery, don’t have the typical muscle car feel. There’s a strong kick of low-end torque right where it should be; what gets us is the artificial, buzzy sound of it, entirely disconnected from what a muscle car sounds like. Ford amplifies and adds some engine noise via the car’s speakers, and we’d suggest another round in the studio.