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CAR UK August 2019

Every month CAR interviews the stars of motorsport, demystifies the latest in-car technology and shares our writers’ passion for car culture and car design. Discover the world’s newest and most exciting cars: join us to drive everything from supercars and hot hatches to family cars.

United Kingdom
12 Issues

in this issue

3 min

Le Mans 2019, a race without any real contest at the sharp end and marred by more conspiracy theories than Armstrong and Aldrin’s little day out on the Moon, won’t go down as a classic. But it marked the end of Ford’s factory presence at the world’s greatest motor race, an event it returned to in 2016 with the express purpose of winning – 50 years after the original Ford GT did the same. For Ford folk, it’s the end of an emotional chapter. Right now the company faces myriad challenges: plummeting market share and plant closures in Europe, Trump’s proposed sanctions, and the ferociously expensive race to develop EVs and autonomous tech (in part in collaboration with VW). One of its most dynamic lieutenants, Raj Nair, also fell from grace…

5 min
green new deal

Most 100-year-olds spend their time reminiscing about the life they’ve led and the impact they’ve made on the world. Not Bentley. With its new EXP 100 GT, it’s looking firmly ahead. While it may just be a concept, this 5.8m-long, up-to-four-seat grand tourer (with scissor doors that are longer than a Renault Twingo) is an early nod to a future all-electric autonomous Bentley. ‘As with all birthdays, it’s a chance to celebrate where you are now and how you got there,’ says exterior design head JP Morgan. ‘This is a car that honours our past, and a beacon for us in the future.’ It’s still clearly a Bentley to look at, with so many design cues from current and past models. ‘There are subtle abstract references to cars from our history like…

2 min
ceo runaround… bmw v12 doomed… will audi lose lambo to porsche?

Who’d be a German car boss right now? Well, for some of them it may not be a problem they face for long. Will Harald Krüger’s contract as chairman of the BMW board of management – which expires next spring – be renewed by the supervisory board? He’s widely liked, but is that the most important quality to take the company through the tough years ahead? What’s in store for Audi CEO Bram Schot when Markus Duesmann is eventually released from his gardening leave by BMW? VW Group hired him to take over from Schot at Audi, but the rumours now circulating are that Oliver Blume, currently making a great success of running Porsche, might be diverted to Audi, leaving Duesmann in charge of Porsche. And what of VW chief Herbert Diess…

2 min
puma, but not as we know it

Sports car sympathisers and SUV haters look away now, as the enemy has well and truly captured the flag. Ford’s latest crossover is called Puma, a name that at the turn of the century was attached to the type of spicy front-wheel-drive coupe we seldom see today. But if you can put misty-eyed memories aside, 2020’s new Puma – based on a wider version of the Fiesta platform – has a lot going for it. It looks striking, for a start. From the alien-mask front end, to the sculpted sides and bulging wheelarches, it’s very different from any other Ford SUV, and bigger than the Fiesta Active. It’s front-drive only. The engine line-up introduces two mild-hybrid units. Both the 123 and 153bhp three-cylinder 1.0-litre petrols will come with EcoBoost Hybrid technology, featuring…

4 min
your wildest dreams

Gordon Murray Purist, genius A trained mechanical engineer, it was in F1 – first with Brabham, then McLaren – that Murray’s problem-solving virtuosity gained global recognition. He founded Gordon Murray Design in 2007. The T.50 will be Gordon Murray Automotive’s first car. History is repeating in the best possible way. The phrase, so often used as a sombre warning on the perils of dumbly heading down the same well-trodden road to catastrophe, is this time cause for jubilation. Gordon Murray, he of the rule-stretching and awesomely successful Formula 1 cars and the majestic McLaren F1 road car, is working on a sequel – a carbon-tubbed, turbo-free, V12 three-seater designed from the ground up to weigh next to nothing and deliver the purest, most engaging driving experience since his last, spectacular crack at the…

1 min
alpine told us less is more. it lied

We fell for it. Throughout the Alpine A110’s entire gestation period – and it was protracted – the message from the minds behind the French renaissance sports car was consistent: light is right and less is more. Modest tyres, brakes and anti-roll bars, relatively soft dampers and springs, no manual gearbox option – they all helped make the Alpine lighter and more accessible at real-world speeds. ‘Yesssss!’ the world screamed in joyous unison. ‘This is what we’ve been waiting for!’ And it was – the A110 finished third in our 2018 Sports Car Giant Test, behind a Porsche costing a quarter of a million quid and a Ferrari costing a quarter of a million quid. But, inevitably, Alpine’s now decided that while less may well be more, a little more is surely…