The Ultimate Beast Makes Its Debut on Public Roads

bac mono frontThe early months of 2016 will see a huge landmark in racing, as BAC (Briggs Automotive Company) will be releasing the world’s first race car built solely for driving on public roads. For anyone who’s been longing for the day when they can show off their road-ripping monster to a stunned crowd of cityslickers, right in the middle of town, that day is soon here.

The BAC Mono, as the model is called, will go from 0 to 100 kilometers per hour in less than 3 seconds and has been nicknamed “The ultimate road beast” by its creators. After a series of successful test runs in China, the Beast is finally ready for its official release. The big launch will first take place during the Spring Festival in both Beijing and Shanghai, with a worldwide run scheduled this fall. BAC is currently in the tedious process of making their product approved for public driving in a number of countries. With a little assistance from trade agencies and investment groups, BAC hopes to have obtained global road-legal approval by the end of this year.

bac mono britain

The creators are not ashamed in admitting that the BAC Mono will be marketed as an expensive toy for the boys who never really grew up. It’s meant to be an accessory (or extension, depending if one were to take a stroll down psychology lane) for the wealthy, giving them yet another chance to flaunt their colours of green in the faces of the common plebs. Although the specs are quite impressive for a “regular” car, the major appeal lies in the BAC Mono’s extravagant design and its country of origin. Hand-crafted pieces from BAC’s headquarters in Liverpool, England will hopefully add a collector’s value to the car, said to be released in very limited quantity.

The marketing department at BAC has put an initial price tag of a quarter million dollars on the BAC Mono. Depending on the Beast’s success in China, positive projections speculate an added 25-30 percent once the big boy toy reaches our domestic shores.

bac mono on public roads

If everything goes according to plan, by the end of 2016, you too can cruise down to the shop for some milk and bread in your very own race car. Or, like Peter Pan, take your friends on a magical ride towards the setting sun in an oblivious mix of untethered economic freedom and a general sense of superiority.

Basic Care: Extend the Lifetime of Your Car Battery During the Winter Season

winter jeepThe days are slowly getting longer and brighter as winter is on the retreat. But for many of us car enthusiasts, those cold and snowy days are still in full effect. Who doesn’t know the frustration of getting up before sun-up, dragging your sleepy butt to the curb, only to find the damned thing won’t start!

Your car battery loses about 30 percent of its power capacity whenever the surrounding temperature drops below the freezing point. Just a few degrees below zero is enough to drain it of more than 50 percent of its power. Starting up an engine in low temperature often takes double the current, combined with a much lesser battery output.

Here are some things you can do to winterize your car battery and avoid getting an early heartburn first thing in the morning.

1.) Be prepared. Winter is coming around the same time every year, and yet millions of people find themselves stuck with a dead car battery simply because they didn’t take the necessary preparations. A basic checkup of your car’s battery and electrical system right before the first snow starts to fall is often all it takes.

2.) Cold and wet weather works the same on your car as it does on us people. It’s harder to get out of bed in the morning and we feel more sluggish and slow than we would during a warm and sunny day. Just as you regularly go in for a checkup of our joints, muscles and organs, so should you do with your car. Test that everything runs as it’s supposed to at least every couple of months. Especially look for any signs of rust and corrosion in your vehicle’s joints and connections.

3.) Keep your battery charged. Use a separate charger for the winter to keep your battery up on par. A fully charged battery is more resistant to freeze than a discharged one. If you’re not using your car for some time, take out the battery and charge it at home.

4.) Overall inspection. Making your car ready for the winter season is more than just checking your battery. You should also make sure that your cables and fasteners are working properly. Check the wear and tear of your cables and switch them out before they start giving you trouble.

A few of these minor preparation is usually all it takes to have your car running smoothly. Learn how to care for your car and there’s no reason why you should ever find yourself stuck on a cold winter day.

 

Compete Against World Class Champions in Mini Racing Online

Have you ever wondered how well your racing abilities would compare to the skills of a professional, or perhaps even a F1 World Champion? Well, here’s your chance. Mini Racing Online (MRO) is a very fun little game that lets you put your money where your mouth is, as you get to take part in organized races on some of the most famous tracks all over the world – only you do it from the comfort of your own home.

The game features everything an amateur race enthusiast can wish for: full customization of both racing team and managers. You can also reach out to fellow players and partner up, or just go at it as a freelancing competitor in the hopes of garnering the attention of the celebrities to be given a seat on their team.

What makes MRO so much fun is that it includes entire seasons of championships across the globe for you to compete in. How well do you think you would do in any of the annual Formula-1 events? You no longer have to wonder, you can just find out for yourself.

All individual events come with their own set of rules regarding allowed equipment and limitations. On some circuits, you’re only allowed a single pit stop, or only being able to change tires and nothing else, making the race a much more difficult challenge. There are plenty of championships throughout the season, put together for both newbies and experienced players. Each race has a balanced reward system – claiming third prize on one of the tougher circuits will give you more points than grabbing the gold on one of the beginner courses.

At the end of the season, a final race takes place on a secret circuit, giving players one last chance to take a shot at the title of ultimate MRO champion.

We’ve had a blast playing, customizing cars and teams, teaming up with likeminded racers, and occasionally sparking fierce rivalries on both local and international levels.

Try out MRO for yourself and get a chance to race with the best of the best.

Our Top 5 Favourite Race Cars of All Time

mclaren gtrWe were sitting around just chatting away the other day, and as always, the topic culminated in a heated debate over the ultimate race car. This is where everyone becomes a bit dictator-like in asserting their opinion and we’re no different from everyone else. For some, the inner workings come first – the design and power output of the engine for maximum performance in speed. A few tend to favour the lines and sculptures, the overall look and feel of the vehicle, and all have a different taste when it comes to drift and handling.

We eventually had to settle for a compromise of a top 5 list, as no one on the panel was willing to admit total defeat. We are well aware that we’ve left some of your favourites out, and you are more than welcome to join the discussion by simply contacting us with a brief description of your own contender and why you think it would join our top 5.

Without further delay, here are our prime contestants (in no particular order, as we weren’t able to come to a conclusion) battling it out for the top spot as the ultimate race car.

Porsche 917

This streamlined beauty only had a very limited run on the assembly line and it’s not easy to get a hold of one these days. So if you do, be sure to cherish it like the magnificent piece of humming wonder it is. The Porsche 917 has been a crucial instrument in victories at the Can Am and Le Mans, and is widely regarded as one of the most innovative automobiles of its days. Porsche still holds the model in high regard, and wealthy collectors are still able to order their own custom-made versions, at a hefty price, of course.

Ferrari 458 Challenge

We all love the 458 Challenge for bringing the two worlds of track racing and casual driving together in one fine specimen. Hailed as the gateway from street racing to proper gentlemen’s handling, this model is as suited for the inexperienced beginner as for the seasoned veteran. It has a crisp, lean design that combines the best of the classic Ferrari lines everyone appreciates with a clean, futuristic look and feel added on top. One of the best race cars money can buy, with an additional vibe of everyday versatility as a welcome bonus.

Mazda MX-5

Classic design in all honour, but what really matters for true race enthusiasts is the driving experience. Few can compete the MX-5 in smooth handling on the track or in the dirt, backed by aggressive acceleration and responsive steering. It’s not a cheap car by any means, but it more than makes up for it in cost-effectiveness over time, and is considered one of the absolute best models to start with for a fresh driver looking to dig deeper into the art of racing.

Ford Fiesta R5

Like the MX-5, the Fiesta R5 is more about performance than presentation. It may even come across as a tad bland to some, but don’t let that fool you. This little engine that could is a real power pack once you rev up the engine, as well as being extremely versatile. We’ve seen it destroy many a competitors across a host of different platforms, featuring some of the toughest dirt and forest courses. With its price in the lower range, it’s a great model for anyone looking to get the most out of a race car in a non-pretentious, straight-to-the-point manner.

McLaren F1 GTR

When you talk race cars, there’s one model that always comes up: the McLaren GTR. One of the most iconic cars in the history of the sport and with an unparalleled success rate all over the world, this is one model that always deliver what it promises. It looks stunning, almost like a mini jet from the future, handles like a dream, and has some serious horsepower under its chassi, making for one awesome driving experience.

Did we leave out your personal pick? Send us a message and we’ll bring your contribution to the panel for consideration.

The History of the German Grand Prix at Nurburgring

formula 1The Grober Pries von Deutschland, or the German Grand Prix as it’s more commonly known to the global racing community is one of the biggest annual events in the history of automobile sports. Due to the restrictions following the end of the second World War, Germany was largely forbidden to compete in any international events, which delayed the official introduction of the German Grand Prix into the Formula 1 World Championships until 1950. German race fans had to settle for local competitions, organized by the German Automobile Club until such time when the country was finally allowed back on the international scene.

A Brief History Lesson

The history of German racing basically started in 1907 when the Taunus Circuit held the first Kaiserpreis race. The statue of limitations dictated that each contestant couldn’t enter with any model featuring an 8 litre engine or above. The first competion was won by Felice Nazzaro from Italy, sponsored by Fiat. This event, in combination with the Heinrich-Fahrt series, became the forerunners to what would later be the official German Grand Prix. The country announced its first all-national event with Grand Prix models in 1929 at the AVUS course in Berlin. The Grand Prix event soon switched locations to the famous Nurburgring track and was part of the inauguration ceremony of the almost 30 kilometre course. Because of national economic recession, the competition took a three year hiatus before it was reinstated in 1934. Other minor events were held during this time, but only the Nurburgring Grand Prix was big enough to be considered part of the European Championships.

Apart from the Nurburgring, another track was planned and the constructions of the Deutschlandring had already begun in preparation for hosting the 1940 Grand Prix when the war broke out in Europe. Since the late 70s, the offical setting for the German Grand Prix has been the Hockenheimring, with the sole exception of ’85, when the competition temporarily moved back to the Nurburgring. Germany’s numerous successes in the Formula 1 Championships triggered the organizing of a second annual event, the Luxembourg Grand Prix, or the European Grand Prix, and was first held in 1995.

Taking advantage of the momentum and international focus on German racing, two consecutive competitions were announced as the sport entered the new millennia. One annual Grand Prix would take place every other year with Nurburgring and Hockenheimring as hosts. Despite several financing issues in recent times, with sponsors and hosts dropping out due to high licensing costs and unresolved disputes with the F1 international board, the German Grand Prix remains included in the official schedule and a national festivity for German and international race enthusiasts alike.

Buy Gold Bars – F1 Champion Gives Fans Financial Advice

vettelMost people know Sebastian Vettel as the youngest Formula 1 champion in the history of the sport. At the tender age of 23, the German driver won his first title in the Abu Dhabi 2010 Championship. He continued his winning strike the next year by destroying his competition all through 2011, and was able to repeat his impressive accomplishment in both 2012 and 2013, making him one of the few people who have ever won the prestigious race four times in a row. He began his career racing for Red Bull before later on switching over to Ferrari, and his success story continues produce fine results on the pedestal, most recently grabbing the second spot in a close finish in 2015.

The man lives for his passion and it clearly shows in his track record.

What perhaps is less known about Vettel is that he’s also a prominent financial investor. With great success comes great fortune, and Vettel is determined to make the most of his price money and sponsorship deals by expanding his financial empire beyond his winnings. This is a multi-talented champion who strives to achieve whatever goal he sets his sights on. We managed to get a few previous minutes with the man, where he told us some of his secrets and financial investment tips for any fellow race enthusiasts looking to make a buck in other areas than betting on F1 drivers.

The best way to make a killing, according to Vettel?

Buy physical gold bars.

Investing in Gold Bars

The champion has invested a significant percentage of his earnings in a physical gold bar supply. Gold works as a finite currency, being treated as such by central banks and therefore worth holding, he says. It’s not a traditional investment, as you don’t necessarily trade your gold back and forth, but should hold on to it as a personal wealth insurance policy. Buying gold bars is a good way to keep your finances secure and growing until you’re ready to pass on the profits made to your children, or grandchildren. A beginner should start looking into gold bar investments first, before considering hedge funds, shares in mining operations or other more risky alternatives.

Vettel advises newcomers to start out with some bullion coins or bars, as these are sold at the spot price of gold. Most bullions are minted in one quarter, one half, or one oz form. There are heavier versions too, but for a beginner this should be more than enough to start out building a healthy portfolio. One-ounce gold bullions like the Krugerrand are among the most popular choices for most private investors, who usually have a more modest pool of funds to draw upon. There’s also the option of going for older, rarer coins. Gold coins with a collector’s worth attached to them are not just valued by sheer weight but also for their historical appreciation value and aesthetics. These coins are generally more expensive, but have the advantage over regular gold bars, given that their worth increases at a faster rate. The British sovereign is the most popular numismatic gold coin among collectors and investors. Another upside that Vettel points out is that all these coins are free from taxes and fees.

Most beginners start out by hiring a verified trader that can buy gold from a gold provider, to then be transferred to a personal depository account. An allocated account will allow an investor to own a personal supply of individual coins and gold bars, stored in a vault with a third-party custodian. Today, it’s very easy to buy gold bars online, either for home shipment or vault storage. Just look up a review site on how to invest in gold bars for sale with a reputable gold provider, and learn more about finding gold bars for sale and delivery. You can also find plenty of information on how to buy gold bars for your individual retirement account, rolling over your current IRA into a precious metals IRA backed by a privately owned gold bar supply etc.

Another example of buying gold is to put your money in companies with mining operations or gold deposit exploration. If this is more to your liking, it’s recommended that you diversify your investment by adding more than one company to your portfolio, as the risk of investing in these companies is greater than just putting money in pure gold bars. There are also gold options, stocks and futures, but here you need to remind yourself that you’re not actually the owner of any gold bars, but are simply betting on the future movements of the world’s market pricing of gold.

Financially savvy investors advise that any of these alternatives is a way to leverage your financial position, meaning you can boost the size of your original bet. As always, there’s no reward without a risk. If you put all your eggs in one basket, chances are you could lose some money if the gold price suddenly starts falling. On the other hand, there’s a pretty good chance that your investment will grow exponentially over a longer period of time, if you choose your cards wisely and play them accordingly. Buying gold bars has traditionally been a secure way to slowly grow your funds, as it’s considered one of the most recession-proof commodities on the global market. While company stocks and bonds are more volatile, physical gold bars tend to steady climb in price and are usually the first set of assets that jump up when the market goes down.

Most people take this safer alternative and are looking for gold bars for sale that can then be stored as a long-term financial backup, if the economy would face another crisis and causing the markets to crash.

As with all things in life, you should diversify your gold investment and proceed with caution before making your next move.

By investing in gold bars, you give yourself an advanced position in the race towards financial freedom, while avoiding the most common pitfalls.

We all like to go fast, but when it comes to personal wealth, it’s a marathon, not a sprint.

 

German Racing Silver Review

Here’s another thing you can do when the weather is less suited for outdoor activity. In his book, German Racing Silver: Drivers, Cars and Triumphs of German Motor Racing, author Karl Ludvigsen documents some of the most famous German racing drivers throughout history, from Lautenschlager to Schumacher. Ludvigsen has spent more than two decades cataloguing Germany’s racing icons, starting with the triumphs of Christian Lautenschlager who managed to win to of the biggest Grand Prix victories ever recorded when he competed for Mercedes in the early 20th century. The pinnacle of German international fame, Michael Schumacher holds a record of seven world championship titles while racing for the same company and sponsor.

In the book you can also find other notorious drivers, such as Hans Stuck, Hermann Lang, Karl Kling and Manfred von Brauchitsch, following their victories for Benz, Porsche and Auto Union from an era commonly known as the age of the Silver Arrows. Ludvigsen compliments his writing with a closer look at companies like Porsche, that started as a minor underdog on the racing scene to later become the dominant force on the tracks with its 956 and 962 series. Mercedes-Benz investment in new talents to win the Formula-1 is also well documented.

To further his research, Ludvigsen delves deeper into the industry of the sport, with great detailed retellings of the famous German tracks and the cars that raced on them. BMW, Audi, AFM, NSU, Stoewer and Zoller enthusiasts are guaranteed to get their fill as the author leaves no stone unturned in his quest to expose the phenomenon of German engineering to the world. As a true historian, he doesn’t shy from depicting the silver era under the Nazi regime, when drivers and their patrons were both financially funded by the Third Reich in order to flaunt its power to international competitors. The historic events and glorious models of this age remain contenders for the title of gold medalists in the history of racing.

If you have the time, pick up a copy of German Racing Silver and learn more about this fascinating piece of history that continues to capture the attention and imagination of racing fans to this day.

Everyone Can Take the Porsche Boxster for a Spin In This Old Classic

porsche boxsterWe thought it would be a nice break in the action to sit back and play one of our favorite racing games, featuring an old classic that’ll never go out of style, namely the Porsche Boxster.

This splendid combination of exquisite design and horsepower is the joint creation of Larson & Stark, who in 1993 drafted the first concept model of what would become the Porsche 986 Boxster. Originally powered by 2.5 litre capacity flat six-cylinder engine and with lines reminiscent of the old 550 Spyder model from the 1950s, the Boxster became an instant hit on its public release, both on the race tracks as with collectors and enthusiasts. First produced in 96, it is still the least expensive model in the Germany-based company’s current lineup. Although the designers set out to recreate the look and feel of the Spyder, some modifications had to be made to adapt the car’s chassi to host its modern air coolants. The end result was a beautiful mixture of retro lines and futuristic handling.

If you lack the funds to drive your own Boxster, you can still take it for a spin by revving up your old Playstation and pop in the game Porsche Challenge. Unlike most games, it’s the only selectable model, and not without reason. The developers are professed Boxster lovers and wanted to give everyone a chance to get behind the wheel of one of the greatest cars ever made.

The goal was to make the game as realistic as possible in terms of physics and experience, appealing to actual drivers instead of the more outlandish games on the same theme. If you’re going to play a game all about the Boxster, it should feel like you’re driving a real one, not playing some average arcade racing game. The concept of a true driving simulator in console format is not without flaws, of course. You can never fully recreate the feeling of real racing, especially not on the old PS1, which has some severe limitations in what it can handle. A clever solution was that all cars are identical in everything but color, and that it’s the chosen driver that determines how the car will perform on the track.

Gamers used to more traditional handling might at first become frustrated by the sense of realism, which provides a pretty heavy learning curve. Once pass that, though, handling the turning radius and acceleration soon becomes second nature and the excitement of playing a game that mimics reality takes hold.

Sony Entertainment is smart enough to understand the technical limitations of both game developers and gamers and compensate this by adding different habits and disadvantages in the customized characters. The courses are not that many, but they are hard to master. Just like in a real race, you have to consider every single factor if you want to shave off those precious few seconds to finish first. This makes the replay factor that more much fun, as you constantly have to explore new ways to best your opponents.

Playing Porsche Challenge takes a lot more insight in the reality of car dynamics than just pushing the pedal to the metal and jerk the wheel. A true duel between two or more experienced drivers is a joy to behold, as this is one of the few games where real expertise is immediately rewarded on the virtual course. If you choose to play alone, you are given the option of compete against your own “ghost”, which is also a great way to iron out any kinks in your technique.

Even though this game is almost 20 years old by now, it’s still great fun. Whenever we get the chance at the club, we pop in the old classic and go head to head in one of the best racing simulations available. A really rewarding and fun way to kill some time when the real track is too soaked.

The Real Story That Inspired Fast and the Furious Franchise

lamborghiniThe movie franchise “Fast and Furious” is a series of adrenaline-pumping street racing action that has broken box office records like it’s nothing ever since the first installment was released in 2001. Late Paul Walker, Vin Diesel and Michelle Rodriguez have become international super stars, much thanks to the great success of this customized car epic. What you maybe don’t know is that behind the movie set lurks a true story about illegal street racing on the boulevards of New York City.

“Racer X” is the story of infamous street race Rafael Estevez, originally born an raised in Washington Heights, and his rise to fame in the street racing circle. Estevez later made a very successful transition into professional drag racing and the tale of his life, involving customized cars imported from Japan and the operations of legal authorities to smash the street racing culture, is a testament to a very vibrant and vivid lifestyle that continues to this day.

“Fast and Furious” director Rob Cohen tells in an interview how the inspiration to the movies came from someone telling him about “Racer X”, which led him to attend a race on the streets of Los Angeles. Shortly after his return from the event, Cohen approached Universal Studios and purchased the rights to a feature project on the big screen.

In “The Fast and the Furious”, Paul Walker plays an LAPD undercover agent in the underground world of illegal racing, joining the crew of Vin Diesel. The movie cost approximately $38 million was a huge hit, bringing in over $200 million in theatres worldwide, and the sequels have remained a great cash cow for the studio to milk in the course of more than ten years.

And it all started with “Racer X”.

In the article, Estevez is described as a young man with a fascination with tuning and tweaking customized car, a tradition that dates back to the days when guys would go to town on their heavy Mustangs and Chevys. In this new era, though, the rules have changed and racers are now spending their time pimping out cheap Japanese imports such as Acura Integras and Honda Civics. Custom graffiti patterns and personalized tags and stickers are staple in the new world of street racing. It’s also here where the concept of nitrous oxide is first introduces, with racers tricking out their rides with supercharged systems that use fuel that was once used to give bomber planes a big push back in the Second World War.

In his street racing days, Estevez favored a black Nissan 300ZX and a white Mitsubishi Starion to beat his competitors. His favorite moment, as he tells it, was right before the race. That moment when the cars started creeping up to the line as the sun began to set, the blaring sounds of honking horns and the roars of the crowd, together with the revving engines ready for take-off, is the biggest rush you can get in life, he says. His opponents describe him as a kind of bulky dude who used to wear yellow all the time, but when the hands dropped, he was one of the fiercest there was. A pit bull let off his leash.

For the full story on “Racer X” and his influence on one of the biggest racing franchises in modern times, visit Business Insider.