Cards you may also be interested in
McLaren X-1 One-off Car
From the site: "What happens, you ask, if you are filthy rich and already own every McLaren ever made, and you start to wonder, "What would a McLaren look like if it was mixed with the smooth lines of a Citroen?" Well, here is your answer. An unnamed person called up McLaren's "Special Operations" and asked them to make a one-off car for him. After some meetings back and fourth, they made this. The story (as told by McLaren) It's not every day that a team gets to create something unique in a project that would take the supercar, even by McLaren standards, to a different level. The challenge began with a special brief. One of our clients who already owned a McLaren F1, a Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren and now a 12C, wanted a unique car,' says MSO Programme Director, Paul MacKenzie. The conversation began with our Executive Chairman Ron Dennis almost three years ago ' before the 12C was even launched. The client wanted a machine that had all the capability of the 12C but wrapped in a unique body that reflected his needs and personality.' In a subsequent meeting, Paul Mackenzie and Design Director Frank Stephenson went to see him to start to explore the sort of car he wanted. Says Frank Stephenson: The key qualities the client desired were "timeless and classical elegance". Which was some challenge.' That meeting with Mackenzie and Stephenson lasted for almost three hours. From the pages of notes that were gathered, the design team brought together hundreds of images from the world of automotive, architecture, fashion, design and even film. These were then presented to the customer, and were then narrowed down to a mood book, full of inspiring images from which the design spirit of this unique car would be derived. Inspirational cars included a 1961 Facel Vega, a 1953 Chrysler D'Elegance Ghia, a 1959 Buick Electra, a 1939 Mercedes-Benz 540K and a 1971 Citron SM. There were various examples of architecture " including the Guggenheim museums in New York and Bilbao " plus a Jaeger LeCoultre art deco clock, an Airstream trailer, a Thomas Mann Montblanc pen, a grand piano " and an eggplant. The client liked the shiny texture of the finish,' notes Stephenson. There was also a black-and-white photo of Audrey Hepburn. The client wanted a competition between external designers " some outside the automotive world " and McLaren's own designers,' notes Stephenson. In the end, a design by McLaren's Korean-born RCA graduate Hong Yeo was chosen, and completed under the direction of Stephenson. One of the biggest design challenges faced by Yeo was that most cars that embody classic elegance and timeless values have front engines and rear-wheel drive proportions. This is the exact opposite of a mid-engined supercar. So a new visual language for the car had to be found which led to months of sketching and modelling to find that perfect visual balance. Stephenson recalls: From this design, we then produced a 30 per cent scale model, then a full-size hard foam model. Initially, we planned to do it all digitally but the client insisted on seeing "real" models. The client was very clear in his own mind what he wanted. But the only styling feature prescribed were metal brightwork rails running from the nose, over the shoulderline and hips, to the rear of the greenhouse.' In the words of Hong Yeo: X-1 embodies the McLaren value that every part has to have a purpose. No details are simply visual cues, every one has a purpose. Although I like to think the wide body combined with pontoon style rear fenders will ensure the car glides when it's moving just like a superhero's cape...' The styling took 18 months to sign off but the result is a design that in a few decades time will be hard to pinpoint exactly when it was created ...timeless, therefore, exactly as the client requested. X-1: the creation The X-1 is the most ambitious example yet of MSO's expertise. It has a whole new body made of advanced materials. Everything is bespoke, even down to the lights and wheels, necessitating new testing and homologation meaning the car took two and a half years to build, a process that began before the styling was signed off. The X-1 had its own development programme because crucially, this wasn't to be a fragile concept car that would never see tarmac. It was to be a usable car, road legal and capable of travelling at supercar speeds. It also had to comfortably seat two adults so although the 12C was already as shrink-wrapped as it could be from a packaging perspective, the ingenious flexibility of the MonoCell allowed the creation of a completely different form while maintaining the engineering purity of a McLaren. A full CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics) aerodynamic testing schedule ensured high-speed stability, and the car also completed approximately 625 miles of testing including two intensive testing stints at the Idiada circuit in Spain with chief McLaren test driver, Chris Goodwin. After testing, the whole car was meticulously rebuilt, by hand to concours standard. X-1: the detail MSO Programme Director Paul Mackenzie explains: The X-1 showcases the skills of McLaren Special Operations. More and more luxury customers want bespoke or individual features. The X-1 demonstrates that we can provide the ultimate personalisation service. It also shows that MSO is not just a technology led company. X-1 demonstrates a commitment to perfection and to the highest levels of quality.' All body panels of the X-1 are made from carbon, and are finished in a rich piano black, as specified by the owner. Body sides are lacquered visual carbon fibre. The black paint has no metallic or colour tints and is one of the most challenging colours to paint, but the finish is absolutely exquisite and befits the car perfectly' adds Stephenson. Components were tooled exclusively for the car. They even include unique head- and taillights, inspired by the McLaren Speed Marque logo. The brightwork is machined from solid aluminium, and a nickel finish is then applied. The McLaren logo in the nose is specially machined from solid aluminium then nickel plated. Wheels are also unique to the X-1, and are diamond turned with a tinted lacquer to complement the exterior nickel-plated brightwork. The brightwork itself is all machined from solid aluminium, and then nickel finished to give the same hue throughout. Even the McLaren Speed Marque badge in the nose is machined from solid aluminium, then nickel plated. The same brightwork is used for the over-the-shoulder rails (as specified by the owner), at the base of the windscreen and the back of the glasshouse, and for the eyebrows' over the bespoke headlights. The McLaren Airbrake rear wing is also machined from solid aluminium and nickel plated, to complement the rest of the brightwork. Perhaps the most unusual styling feature is the enclosed rear wheels, an upshot of the owner's desire to have a car reflecting timeless elegance'. The wheels are accessed by carbon panels using, as Stephenson explains, some of the most gorgeous hinges you've ever seen'. The styling, too, is in no way compromised by the opening rear wings. He adds: The attention to detail is astonishing. Neat styling touches feature throughout the design, such as the rear number plate illuminators finished in carbon, a gorgeous machined aluminium cap is used for the header tank, and carbon finishers line the engine bay.' The doors have also been developed specifically for the X-1, although they retain the dihedral action and twin hinges, and the roof is also new. Externally, only the glasshouse is carried over from the 12C. The unique body of the X-1 means most dimensions have changed. The X-1 is 4658mm long " 109mm longer than a 12C. Width is 2097mm (with mirrors) " an increase of 188 mm. Despite the revised roofline, the height remains the same, at 1199mm. Kerb weight is almost identical (about 1400kg), as the lighter carbon body panels compensate for the greater length and width. Light weight, as with all McLaren projects, was a priority. While the basic architecture of the interior did not change, personalisation includes bespoke Harissa Red McLaren Nappa leather used for the seats, door and roof trim, and switchgear with machined nickel-coated, aluminium bezels. The carbon interior trim has a titanium weave, to give a magical 3D-like effect. Special Andesite tufted carpet covers the floor. All these changes ensured the X-1 needed special homologation for road use. The car has been thoroughly engineered to be usable and road legal. The X-1 shares the same the major mechanical components as the 12C, including the twin-turbo 625PS engine, giving astonishing acceleration and top speed. Stephenson explains: 'The X-1 epitomises how we can not only create a truly unique product tailored to the client, but also enable the client to become a key member of the design team throughout the process. It has been a truly rewarding and unforgettable experience. And I think that we as a team have created a completely unforgettable car that is true to one man's vision.' Hong Yeo concludes: We designers are often blinded by the sun and assume that whatever we see and understand is the only way forward: to see the stars, sometimes you need the absence of that blinding light ...looking at a car from a different perspective is what X-1 stands for.' After its debut, on the Monterey Peninsular, the X-1 will return to MSO headquarters in Woking and be carefully checked over before it takes a place in the owner's collection. McLaren Special Operations: The bespoke McLaren Special Operations division was launched at Pebble Beach in August last year. It offers a personalisation service that varies from simple trim changes to a whole new car " as showcased by the X-1. We can realise almost anything,' says MSO Programme Director Paul Mackenzie. The only limit is the size of the customer's imagination.' Changes are typically to colour and trim, although Mackenzie is keen to do more mechanical work too. We are not just about styling,' he notes. At the beginning of this year, Mackenzie expected 10 percent of all 12C customers to choose some level of personalisation " over and above that offered from the extensive McLaren option list. In fact, the percentage of customisation is currently 15 percent and rising. MacKenzie expects 20 percent of all 12C customers will ask for some degree of personalisation by the end of the year. There is a major trend to individualise premium cars, and we expect the demand to continue to rise,' he notes. MSO grew out of McLaren's Customer Care programme, which goes back 20 years to the days of the McLaren F1 road car. It looked after servicing and maintaining cherished F1s for owners. It also undertook personalisation when cars changed hands: new owners often wanted to put their own marks on their vehicles. Today, MSO continues to service and look after F1 road cars from around the world. It also travels to destinations around the globe, to service and maintain cars. During the production period of the Mercedes SLR McLaren, the Customer Care department moved into personalising new cars for owners. On the Stirling Moss limited edition version, about a third of all SLRs had an element of bespoke build,' says Mackenzie. It varied from more visual carbon fibre, to different colours, to retrimmed interiors, to radios " all above and beyond the normal options list.' MSO was officially founded in August 2011 and encompasses design, project engineering, technicians and purchasing. It also has technical and design access to other companies within the McLaren Group. MSO is headquartered in a dedicated building close to the McLaren Technology Centre in Woking, UK. Currently the most popular areas for personalisation include external visual carbon fibre body panels, carbon fibre exterior trim, carbon rear wings, vented wheel arches and different wheel finishers. Different graphics are also in demand, while bespoke colour schemes are popular. Interior changes typically include different trim and unique upholstery stitching. But it's certainly not just colour and trim,' notes Paul Mackenzie. A number of cars have had different front and rear bumpers, which has increased downforce and boosted performance. These cars had to go through full aerodynamic CFD testing before engineering sign-off.' Adds Mackenzie: We're here to help the client personalise the car to their precise taste. They typically come to Woking to see us, or talk to their dealer, or we go to see them. We'll sit down with them, listen to their requests, then come up with a new colour or mechanical components, or " as with X-1 " a new "tailor made" car. Of course we make recommendations but we're certainly not here to be style police. Every client is different. Our main job is to listen and then to interpret the owner's requests into a superb car.' As Mackenzie concludes: This is the first fully client commissioned MSO car, but it certainly won't be the last. The carbon fibre MonoCell chassis used in the 12C, is not only stiff and light, it allows for great flexibility in body styling and provides an affordable structure from which MSO can develop unique cars, as is demonstrated with X-1.' The majority of suppliers for the X-1 were British. Prominent partners with the X-1 were Crosby Composites, responsible for the bespoke carbon fibre, and Luzzo Bespoke, who made the brightwork. Both are based in Brackley, Northamptonshire."
1904 Rolls-Royce 10 HP
Number produced: 17 Price at auction: $7.3 million It's hard to image a time in automotive history when some car engines only produced 10 horsepower, but at the dawn of the 20th century, it was enough to get the job done. Two companies, Rolls and Royce, teamed up to build 17 of these early automobiles. A humble 1.8-liter twin-cylinder engine powered the cars. It follows the early tradition of looking like a horse-drawn carriage with a steering wheel -- and no place for a horse. It has big, brass headlamps, wooden spoke wheels and a horn that looks like a musical instrument. The car sold at auction for $7.3 million in 2004 and is the oldest known Rolls Royce in existence. Its chassis (number 20154) was updated in the 1930s but later restored to its original specification in the 1950s. It had been squirreled away in a farm building, perhaps to hide it from a foreign enemy, as was the case with many pre-World War II vehicles. The 10 hp was a development of Henry Royce's first car, the Royce 10, of which he produced three prototypes in 1903. This was itself based on a second-hand Decauville owned by Royce which he correctly believed he could improve. In particular, Royce succeeded in making his car significantly quieter than existing cars. Unlike the Royce 10 which had a flat topped radiator, the Rolls-Royce 10 hp featured one with a triangular top which would appear on all subsequent cars. The engine is a water-cooled twin-cylinder of 1800 cc enlarged to 1995 cc on later cars, with overhead inlet and side exhaust valves, and based on the original Royce engine but with an improved crankshaft. The power output was 12 hp (9 kW) at 1000 rpm. The car has a top speed of 39 mph (63 km/h). There is a transmission brake fitted behind the gearbox operated by foot pedal and internal expanding drum brakes on the back axle operated by the handbrake lever. Springing is by semi-elliptic leaf springs on both front and rear axles. It is a small car with a wheelbase of 75 in (1,905 mm) and a track of 48 in (1,219 mm). While 10 horsepower may not be a lot, it doesn't in any way diminish this Rolls Royce's place in history.
How COVID-19 Impacted on VVT and Start-Stop System Market ?
Impact of COVID-19 on VVT and Start-Stop System in the Automotive Industry Overview: VVT and start-stop systems are systems in most modern cars that stop the engine when the vehicle is stationary or idling, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and fuel consumption. When the brake is released or the clutch is engaged, the engine is restarted. The VVT & start-stop system detects when the vehicle is stationary or out of gear and automatically stops it. The latest automotive innovations, such as intuitive infotainment, self-driving capabilities, and electrification, rely more on software quality, execution, and integration than on mechanical ingenuity. This transformation is occurring at such a rapid pace that automotive OEMs and other industry stakeholders are finding it difficult to keep up. The exorbitant cost of integrating and upgrading consumer features for various end services. China is the epicenter of the COVID-19 virus had put on hold the various business operating segment leading to a downfall for the sale of three-wheeler electric vehicles. People have also become more cost-conscious as essential items have become more important. The electric three-wheeler companies have been working hard for their customers during the lockdown period. With deliveries and lease becoming critical during the pandemic and the lockdown, the maker stepped up and made sure deliveries of essentials were done. In a nutshell, all of these factors would lead to an increase in the demand for EVs because they provide environmentally friendly alternatives as well as lower delivery costs. For Instance, The Indian automotive sector was already struggling Before the Covid-19 crisis. During 2019, it experienced an 18% decrease in overall growth. Steps to be taken by the vendor to boost the sale: The EV vehicle maker has to form a business partnership with leading e-commerce companies like BigBasket, Ecom Express, Udaan, MilkBasket, and others that can help in providing electric mobility stack as a service. Fleet owners and ecommerce players have realized the benefits of EV for their inter-city movement. The Lack of retail finance is a factor that had a negative impact on sales for electric three-wheelers. Due to Covid-19, many financiers financing electric three-wheelers (E3Ws) faced difficulties in the recovery of the loans extended, as the passenger 3W movement had halted or drastically reduced during the lockdown. In fact, last-mile connectivity for public transport, such as metro trains and buses, has been a key driver of demand for e-rickshaws and when public transport had been shut, this has severely impacted the movement of E3W and earnings of the drivers. As a result, financiers have been in “recovery mode” and reluctant to extend new loans. Therefore, the role of financing should be the priority to boost the sale by the vendor In order to meet the increased demand for last-mile deliveries, the vendor should work on the software capabilities of the vehicle on the backend to enhance the capabilities of the battery pack with the controller to enable better range and load-bearing capacity for the vehicles. Further, with essential practices of social distancing, the company realized that fleet owners will now need connected vehicles to manage their fleet. The company has been working around adding several software features on the backend that helps the fleet managers to streamline their operations and be prepared for eventualities. The vehicles should be inbuilt with new features for optimizing fleet operations with real-time updates, updates on battery operations, and preventive maintenance. Impact on Demand & Supply Chain: During the short term, there could be difficulty in fundraising for startups in the mobility and battery compound segment. However, M&A/fund raising activities are likely to pick up in the medium and long term considering these startups are crucial for developing the EV sector. As people become more homebound in the "new normal," there is a greater demand for home delivery of everything from groceries to essentials to non-essentials, which is driving up demand for e-cargo fleets. The people have become more aware of the importance of clean energy and environmentally friendly alternatives as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown. People have also become more cost-conscious as essential items have become more important. COVID had the greatest impact on three-wheeler sales, which fell from 140,683 units in fiscal 2020 to 88,378 units in fiscal 2021. Two- and four-wheelers, on the other hand, bucked the trend, registering impressive growth during the year, albeit from a small base. However, due to increased demand for e-commerce delivery, there is a significant increase in demand for three-wheelers designed for cargo, particularly electric ones. Electric three-wheelers are being introduced into cargo operations by e-commerce companies and their logistics divisions. The demand for three-wheelers for passenger transportation will remain low for the next two to three months, owing to lower movement of people in urban areas, a lack of preference for shared mobility, and the non-operation of mass transit such as metro and trains, which typically required three-wheelers for the last mile. The COVID-19 can have both favorable as well as unfavorable bearing on the EV segment with short to -mid-term favorable bearing includes Recent BSVI regulations increasing costs of petrol and diesel vehicles, making EVs possibly slightly more attractive, shift from the usage of public transport and shared mobility resulting in a surge in demand of two-wheelers including EV. An increase in demand from the rental/subscription model for EVs may also be possible. Whereas in the long term the favorable conditions include a shift in consumer mindsets toward eco-friendly vehicle models. Conclusion: COVID-19, though ravaged the automotive market in an unprecedented manner during April 2020, which was possibly the first time in history that car manufacturers clocked 'zero sales' but had some silver linings. In many ways, the valuation of EV startups could become more attractive in the short term compared to -pre-COVID-19 era. The major auto players have announced an increase in spending on the EV segment. While COVID-19 might impact the lending capability of financial institutions in the short- to mid-term, funding from strategic tie-ups and investments could possibly increase to achieve the pre-set goals and targets. The pandemic has caused widespread disruption to supply bases, assembly plant closures, and a further shift to declining consumer demand. The reliance on Chinese imports, recent Bharat Stage VI Regulations (emission standards established by the government to primarily regulate the output of air pollutants from petrol and diesel vehicles), and restrictions on migrant laborer movement have all contributed to this situation.