You are here

Ten Things We Learned This Week: 28 July 2017 edition

A crashed Ferrari, Spaghetti BMWs and much more weirdness inside

  1. There's one less Ferrari 430 Scuderia in the world

    “The driver was very lucky,” goes the statement from South Yorkshire Police, who this week, had to respond to a crashed Ferrari on the M1, southbound near junction 37. The conditions were wet, and the car had “left the carriageway and burst into flames”.

    Looking at the picture above, posted on SYP’s Facebook page, they’re not wrong. How on earth said driver managed to walk away from that defies rational human understanding of physics and things.

    So he’s OK, which is the best bit of news we guess. But there are two kickers to this story. Kicker One: it is - it was - a Ferrari 430 Scuderia, and therefore a rare, highly strung and ludicrously good supercar gem. 510bhp from a naturally aspirated V8, 0-62mph in under four, top speed of around 200mph… yeah, it is - it was - a good ‘un. So now there’s one less in the world to marvel at.

    Kicker Two is potentially even more of an, um, kicker: the driver had apparently only picked up his pride and 510bhp-naturally-aspirated-joy an hour previous to it ending up in a field in a decidedly un-Ferrari shape. ONE HOUR, people.

    Picture via SYP Operational Support

  2. Seat continues to refute the excellence of the name 'Seaty McSeatface'

    You might recall that Seat is building a third, large SUV to join its growing ranks of, well, SUVs. There’s the small Arona, the bigger Ateca, and now… well, the name is up to you. Sort of.

    The carmaker launched a global competition asking for naming suggestions, and the finalists from over 10,000 suggestions all relate to Spanish geography. Understandable.

    They are: Abrera, Alboran, Aran, Aranda, Avila, Donosti, Tarifa, Tarraco, and Teide. The winner will be revealed on 12 September at the Frankfurt Motor Show.

    None of those names, you will notice, are Seaty McSeatface. Which is an opportunity missed in Ten Things’ book of weird Things.

    Note - the picture above is of the Ateca. The unnamed one doesn’t exist yet. We will show it to you when it does exist.

  3. A Mercedes-Benz armoured truck sprays polyurethane to protect its valuables

    Prosegur is a ‘leading private security company’ in Brazil. This leading private security company in Brazil has bought 134 ‘compact valuables transporter’ trucks from Mercedes-Benz. If you are a truck enthusiast - and Ten Things sorely wishes that you are - you’ll be delighted to know it is based on the 915 E chassis. Good chassis, that.

    Anyway, said truck is a custom built armoured thingy, that has one very unique safety gadget to protect whatever valuables lay inside. If “unauthorised persons” manage to get to the safe, an expanded polyurethane injection system sprays a hardening material inside.

    This means in less than 22 seconds, all the valuables are safely wrapped. “Surely Q would have liked this,” Mercedes explains.

  4. This is a Spaghetti-liveried BMW i3 and what on earth is happening here

    Leonardo DiCaprio has a foundation called the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation. At the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation’s Saint Tropez Gala, BMW France donated a BMW i3. With a Spaghetti livery. And the word TOILETPAPER emblazoned on the side.

    Then, it was auctioned off, finally ending up in the hands of a Swiss collector for the princely sum of €100,000. What, and indeed, TF.

    Apparently, TOILETPAPER (their caps, not ours), was founded by Maurizio Cattelan and Pierpaolo Ferrari, a bi-annual picture magazine. Apparently, close-up Spaghetti is their signature imagery.

    Looks, um, interesting. We’re still waiting for the i8 cannelloni.

  5. You have this $600 1917 truck to thank for the F-150 Raptor

    Ford is celebrating 100 years of building trucks, and has shown us a picture of the very first one. The Model TT.

    Apparently, the story goes that after nine years of Model T production, Ford customers may have not-at-all asked Henry to build them a Model T with a flat-cap and a rucksack, judging by the picture above. Or maybe they asked him to build something able to carry more stuff and do more things. Who knows, it was 100 years ago.

    Whatever the story, on 27 July 1917, Henry Ford revealed the TT, which took the T’s cab and engine, but put it on a heavier duty frame capable of carrying a one-tonne payload. The asking price in 1917? $600. Which is around $11k in today’s prices.

    He sold 209 that year. And, if you think about it, you have this humble little flat-capped truck to thank for today’s rip-snorting Raptor. Cheers, Henry!

  6. People are now crowdfunding Nürburgring lap record attempts

    The soon-to-be-dead Dodge Viper ACR is a fast car. We know that for two reasons. One, it holds production-car lap records at 13 road courses in the United States. Two, we’ve driven it and said so.

    But to some, that’s not enough clarification. For some, they rely on one benchmark and one benchmark only: a Nürburgring lap time.

    However, since the introduction of the current-generation Viper, Dodge has refused to return to the ‘Ring to set a new lap time. But that hasn’t stopped people going there for themselves with the help of some internet crowdfunding. 

    So that’s what an American team and Dominik Farnbacher did with the help of Viper enthusiasts’ money and some sponsors. They’ve flown a brand-new, bone-stock Viper ACR to the ring and set a 7:03.45 lap time on their first attempt. They’re going to keep hammering round until they’ve milked the Viper of all the speed they can. When they do, we’ll give you a time. But it should easily be sub seven minutes. However, it may have its work cut out getting close to the current lap record of 6:43.2 held by the McLaren P1 LM.

  7. Beware! Car washes are on the attack

    This week, researchers said they have found a way to hack an internet-enabled carwash and make it attack us puny humans with soapy brushes, wax and pressurized water.

    You may laugh, but it could be serious to the health of your car, as we’ve been warned criminals could easily exploit PDQ Laserwash car washes by hacking the code to make their doors close too early or their rollers crush the tops of cars.

    PDQ says it is urgently investigating the issues.

  8. A 92-year-old man has flipped his way into the record books

    Peter Racine is nearly a century old. Admitting to being blind in his right eye and having difficulty seeing through his left, over the years his body has started to fail on him. But that doesn’t matter when you want to be a record breaker. Because determination is what you need to be a record breaker. And Peter has that as he recently flipped his way into the record books by driving a knackered old Subaru up a ramp to flip it over to become the oldest man to flip a car. Watch it for yourself here.

  9. The 300,000th Mercedes-Benz G-Class has rolled off the line

    You may have mistaken Merc’s G-Wagen as being as old as time itself, but it’s only been in production since 1979. And this week the 300,000th boxy blighter fell off the handmade line in Austria. G-Classes are dotted all around the world and used in many applications from providing humanitarian aid in war zones to getting the Kardashians to the shops in safety. Where this Mauritius Blue G 500 ends up we’ll just have to wait and see. But it’ll probably last longer than you do. 


  10. Lotus has relaunched its driving academy

    If you want to go fast or sideways in a car pretending you’re Chris Harris, we’d recommend doing it on a track under the supervision of someone who knows what they’re talking about. Luckily, Lotus has refreshed its driving academy at Hethel so that’s both of those things taken care of.

    The academy isn’t new, it’s just had a lick of paint and some new Elise Sport 220s and Exige Sport 350s put on the fleet for you to skid about (or spin) in. Prices start at £119 for the weirdly named ‘Scare Yourself Sensible’ experience, then there are Bronze, Silver and Gold tier licence days. The Gold day is £899 and required to obtain a Lotus Licence. Lotus says the days will challenge “even the most ardent serial track day enthusiast”, teaching techniques like heel and toe and power oversteer while also offering a personal evaluation at the end of the day to make you either feel like a driving God or bonafide berk.

What do you think?

This service is provided by Disqus and is subject to their privacy policy and terms of use. Please read Top Gear’s code of conduct (link below) before posting.

Promoted content