Road & Track November 2017

Road & Track includes technical features on automotive subjects, wide-ranging feature stories, spectacular automotive art and standard-setting new-car photography, humor, fiction, travel stories, book reviews and the most comprehensive racing coverage offered by a monthly magazine.Bonus: iPad Interactive

United States

in this issue

3 min
amg at 50

As often happens, AMG began as a passion project in a garage. Mercedes-Benz employees Hans-Werner Aufrecht (A) and Erhard Melcher (M) burned the midnight oil near Aufrecht’s hometown of Grossaspach (G), honing a competition 300se engine after the corporate money men deemed racing irrelevant. Their pursuit evolved into an independent tuning outft and then into an in-house performance brand, along the way producing some of the most bombastic machines in racing and on the road. ONE MAN, ONE ENGINE AMG outgrew its original facilities by the mid-1970s and opened shop in Affalterbach. Melcher (above) didn’t make the move, remaining in Burgstall to focus on engine development. The company now employs more than 1500 people. Flagship engines—the 4.0- and 5.5-liter V-8s, the 6.0-liter V-12, and the 2.0-liter four-cylinder—as well as the 6.2-liter V-8 found…

4 min

Dear R&T, Okay, I’m just trying to figure out how big a bank heist I need to plan. Let’s see: $3,639,020 for the Ford GT, Bugatti Chiron, Porsche 911 GT3, and Chevrolet Colorado ZR2, and another $100,000 for the four-car garage. I guess I have to plan on knocking off Fort Knox! JOE FORLIZZI, HUDSON, NEW HAMPSHIRE ALL THE NICE THINGS Loved the three features showcasing the supercar arena and focusing on how they are bred for different purposes. Ford creating a strict racer to conquer Le Mans with the GT, Bugatti continuing its legacy of sonic speed with the Chiron, and Porsche rewarding its fundamentalist cult with the 911 GT3 (praise the return of the manual!). All indomitable beasts overtaking their playing field and worth the accolades for their specific design and…

2 min
editor’s letter

Is it possible for hard-core racers to simply enjoy racing, regardless of the results? IT ALL STARTED INNOCENTLY ENOUGH, a few guys having a friendly conversation about the state of grassroots motorsports. On how it had changed since I made the move more than two decades ago from karting and Porsche Club of America track days to SCCA club racing and eventually some pro series stuff. On the growing popularity of Lemons and Chump- Car racing, the perceived seriousness of SCCA and NASA, and the somewherein- between approach of upstarts like American Endurance Racing (AER) and World Racing League (WRL). Discussing the merits of each series and their particular takes on balancing competition, affordability, and a good time, someone tossed out the bright idea of participating as a group in a low-stakes,…

5 min
blue steel

THEY LIKE THE TAHOES, he said. Chevrolets. Big steel box, slow but useful. And safe. It turns out this preference was once up in the air, or maybe just a discussion point, and then two of the department’s officers were in an accident. Their Tahoe hit a concrete wall, head-on, at 50 mph, and they walked away. When the mayor caught wind of that, it was boom, done, we are ordering more Tahoes. Commander Rob Scholl, of the Kent Police Department, in Kent, Washington, told me all this before he let me drive his police car. Correction: Before he let me drive his police truck. Clarification: Before he let me drive his brand-new, liveried, fully equipped Chevrolet Tahoe Police Pursuit Vehicle—this is the actual model name—unaccompanied in traffic. As if I were an…

14 min

LIME ROCK PARK IS AN IMPROBABLE GEM, a charming 1.5-mile circuit built on a converted cornfield in bucolic northwest Connecticut. There are seven turns, strict noise regulations, no grandstands. Touring and GT cars have banged doors here for six decades. The history is so thick, you have to brush it away from your face. We’ve come to test a pair of intriguing new Audi sedans. Waiting for the New England mist to lift are R&T editor-inchief Kim Wolfkill; Stephan Reil, head of technical development at Audi Sport; and Brad Kettler, in charge of the division’s U.S. customer-racing program. Also, the wicked-fast Audis. Rolling off a trailer in the parking lot is a spotless RS3 LMS, Audi’s new factory-built entrant for the fledgling TCR International Series (TCR). The touring-car series allows privateers to campaign…

3 min
audi’s turning point

In the mid-Eighties, Audi was reeling from an unintended-acceleration scandal. To restore its image, the company entered a 200 Quattro sedan in Trans-Am for 1988. It was a flag-bearer for the company’s signature road-car technologies, turbocharging and all-wheel drive. Audi had two FIA Group B rallying titles with the Quattro but little in the way of roadracing experience. Group B hero Walter Röhrl was tapped to drive alongside Le Mans winners Hurley Haywood and Hans- Joachim Stuck. “[Rörhl] taught us, Hurley and myself, how to drive the car. It was new to me, an all-wheel-drive car in racing,” Stuck said. The inline-five was situated before the front axle. “This was hard for the front tires, so we had to work a lot on the distribution of the power. We ended up with…