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Frankfurt Motor Show: the tuners

  1. At every big motor show, there’s another secondary show going on: the battle of the tuners. This particular skirmish takes place in the same exhibition halls as the big manufacturers, but instead of bragging about lowered CO2 emissions and ‘connectivity’, it’s about lots of carbon fibre, big wheels and automotive vajazzles.

    These ‘automotive fabricators’ are always technically one motor show behind the likes of Porsche, BMW and Audi. They take the show-stopping production cars from the preceding event, strip them down, re-skin them, add more power, then garnish with a taste-pushing paint scheme and put them under the bright lights.

    Frankfurt this year was quieter than normal on the mods front, but there was still enough to report back. So sit back, relax and try not to tear out your eyes. But if you are of a nervous disposition, please click this link now.

    Words and pictures: Rowan Horncastle 

  2. Hamann Nervudo

    The way the incredibly angled panels of a Lamborghini Aventador tessellate to form the shape of a definitive Italian supercar – V12 and all in the middle – has made it one of our favourite cars. But it’s not perfect: the gearbox on fast up-shifts is akin to being kicked in the head. Surely the first modification Hamann considered was massaging the electronics to try and smooth that out? Nope. They added lots of holes (including two nostrils on the front, no idea what they could possibly benefit), a new rear diffuser, roof scoop and spoiler. Consider the tessellation ruined.

    But they did increase the power by 60bhp and fit a race exhaust to make it shoot even more flames, so cooking sausages should now be even easier.

  3. Brabus B63S

    We’d like to formally congratulate Brabus on being the first tuning manufacturer to graduate from the school of Top Gear Maths with a double first. And it’s all thanks to the mental B63S.

    Brabus, being diligent tuning nomads, looked at the G63 6x6 and thought, “There’s something’s not quite right here. We need more… um, what’s the word I’m looking for Hans?”, “Power?”, “Yes Hans! That’s it. We need more power!”. So they fitted the 5.5-litre V8 with special Brabus turbochargers and larger compressor units producing a higher boost pressure and a total of 690 bhp and raising the torque by 108lb ft. This goes through all six wheels to propel the four tonne beast to sixty in 7.4 seconds. We sincerely doff our hats to you Brabus, keep up the good work.

    *Hans may or may not work for Brabus.

  4. Klassen armored VIP Business Sprinter

    After Top Gear recently ventured into the world of road testing vans, we were intrigued what modifications can be applied to make commercial vehicles a bit more interesting. It turns out, because all of that space in the back, a hell of a lot can be done.

    Take the Klassen VIP Business Sprinter. Using a long-wheel-base Mercedes Sprinter van as the foundation, Klassen handcraft a little bulletproof bunker in the back. Just about everything you see can be wirelessly controlled from an iPad. That includes the big, automatic bulletproof door, the cubby holes under the seats for your shoes, the tables, the massage Lay-Z Boys and all the TVs, PS3s and other entertainment. Everything is finished in wood and leather (including the onboard corded phone) and there’s a Nespresso machine with a matching set of china cups and saucers. Or a fridge and some crystal tumblers for the harder stuff – like full-fat milk. Just be careful not to spill your skinny mocha-chocha-chino on the cream carpets. 

    Unfortunately we couldn’t see under the bonnet, but they have added four exhausts to the back. So it should definitely be able to cope with all that extra weight from the extra invertors, batteries, TV screens, bulletproofing and the like. We’re also told that vans like this are fit for rock stars like One Direction, so they may as well keep the ‘no tools left in the van overnight’ sticker on the back, right?  

  5. Mansory F12 La Revoluzione

    We’ve saved the best until last. Top Gear’s ‘OMG!’ award, which once again, and for the fifth motor show in a row, goes to Mansory. This time for their latest iteration of the Ferrari F12: La Revoluzione.

    When Jeremy reviewed the fastest Ferrari currently available, he pondered whether it had too much power. A strange thought from someone who religiously sips from the challis of horsepower. But Mansory disagrees. And it seems by quite a margin: they’ve upgraded the ECU, bolted on a set of large turbochargers and added a brand new exhaust system designed for minimal back pressure – all in pursuit of more power. And they’ve ended up with a bonkers 1,200 bhp and 650 lb ft from the 6.3 litre V12. What would Jeremy say to that?

    And they didn’t stop there. Always trying to go above and beyond to push the automotive boundaries, Mansory thought that it could ‘fix’ Ferrari’s styling, too. Unhappy with the tireless hours of testing that Ferrari did with the F12 in their very expensive wind tunnel to make it as aerodynamically efficient as possible, Mansory stripped off all the panels and put their own carbon fibre ones on and placed a big wing on the back. Then put it on 21 inch wheels at the front and 22 inch wheels at the back, because everyone knows the bigger the wheel the faster the car, right?

    How much do you pay for this privilege? Just over a million pounds. That’s four normal F12s plus some change. You have permission to pick your jaw off the floor now.

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