Evo has been doing a pretty interesting Car vs. Bike track battle series. The latest installment is particularly interesting because they put a KTM motocross bike up against some rally cars. Up first is a hardcore Safari rally gravel spec 240Z followed by a tarmac spec Mitsubishi Evolution. I won’t spoil the results, but it’s interesting to see how the driving styles are changed for running long travel suspension and gravel tires on tarmac. There’s also a jump on the course where the effects of vehicle weight on speed are hyper amplified.
This is probably one of the rowdier Car of the Year competitions that you’ll see. Basically evo rounded up the significant new performance cars of this year and got Tiff Needell and Dickie Meaden to pair them up and go head to head out on track. These are the matchups they ended up picking:
Porsche Boxster S vs. Lotus Exige S
Toyota GT-86 vs. Morgan 3 Wheeler
BMW M135i vs. Porsche 911 Carrera
Mercedes C63 AMG Black vs. BMW Alpina B3 GT3
Pagani Huayra vs. McLaren MP4-12C
The guys basically go for feel and fun more so than technical stats and lap times. They do put the lap times in order at the very end to show some surprising performance from some of the cars.
Henry Catchpole of evo walks us through the BMW Art Car Collection that was gathered in London as part of BMW’s sponsorship of the Olympics. It turns out he got his start writing for the automotive industry after doing his philosophy and art history dissertation on this collection of Art Cars so there are few people who make a better guide. Evo also has an accompanying gallery of the cars here.
Harry Metcalfe of evo is back with another car guy test. Metcalfe has a special relationship with Horacia Pagani that allows him to bring us some exclusive coverage of some of Pagani’s inner workings. This video from the annual Pagani gathering is no exception. The first half covers the finer details and driving nuances of the new Huayra. Harry says the Huayra is similar to a two-wheel drive Veyron and I guess he had to make sure because he spent the next day driving around in the new Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse roadster. Again, he walks us through the finer details of the car including some of the bits that he doesn’t like. There’s no crazy drifting or video editing so you will only find this interesting if you’re a real car geek.
What is the difference between a good car review and a bad car review? Anybody can get into a car, mash the throttle and then report back saying that’s it fast and it looks good. That does nothing to convey the driving experience to people who don’t have the privilege of driving that same car. If I wanted to know that a car was fast and looked good, I’d just read the 0-60 specs and Google some pictures of it. I watch car reviews because I’m curious about a car’s essence. I want to know what the designers’ philosophy was for the car and if they succeeded in achieving it. How does the car speak to you as a driver? What does it take to master it? Being able to put those sensations into words and video separates the good car reviewers from the people who are wasting their time. If I can’t drive the car vicariously through you, then you’re not doing your job. I bring all this up because evo Magazine just posted the best review I’ve seen of the McLaren MP4-12C. Henry Catchpole picks up the car at the McLaren Factory and takes it for a leisurely road trip to Monaco. On the way, he takes the car through some of the world’s finest driving roads in the mountains of France. You’ll see that it’s a dream drive right from the opening scene of the video. Give him 12 minutes of your time and you will know exactly what it feels like to have an MP4-12C as a dancing partner.