Barabus TKR

Barabus TKR

 
Fastest car in the world, maybe in 2006
 
Where it all began
 
The TKR is fully engineered, developed, certified and even marketed by Barabus Sportscars Limited, they successfully created a 1005 BHP SuperCar which runs 0-60 in unheard of times. The idea was merge lightning acceleration like a Formula 1 car with raw power with the added extra of the everyday drivability, luxury & in a road car.
 
The TKR has been researched and engineered by the world’s most talented engineers, combine that with the use of cutting edge technologies and race tuned parts, and you have a serious piece of kit. It looks a cross between a Koenigsegg CCX and a Saleen S7. The supercar itself is driven by an all aluminum V8 engine, rebuilt with racing components and re-tuned, basically re-engineered by Barabus, and then modded with twin turbo's and twin intercoolers to keep her cool.
 
This type of development and race engineering is capable of creaing 1005BHP at 6800 rpm.
Barabus claim the TKR will travel 270 miles per hour and reach 0-60 mph time of 1.67s and hit the redline @ 7500 rpm.
 
When you look at this car one thing screams out at you, that of Italian Supercar, however there is one difference such as Ascari and thats, that the V8 engine is British engineered and TKR supercar itself is to be built in Colonella, Italy, therefore demonstrating a "best-in-practice" philosophy, using worldwide parts and expertise. 
 
The auto needs some pretty impressive stopping power, this is solved by the addition ceramic brakes.
 
As for getting your hands on this motor, well the car is available globally through a pre selected range of Barabus certified dealers specialists in exotics & supercars. It is thought that 300-400 models will be made and sold over a 3 year period, at a price of around 660,000 USD or £360,000. Can this challenge the Bugatti Veyron.
 
The official Barabus website quotes 'The TKR is designed to compete with the world's fastest, quickest, best handling, most luxurious grand touring cars in the world'.
 
Lets see how it fairs.

Ascari history

Ascari history

 
The name Ascari links back to its racing routes, inspired by Alberto Ascari (1918 - 1955) its founder, one of the Three Musketeers and the first to win a Formula 1 World championship, twice.
A supercar in the making
 
Alberto was born on the outskirts of Milan, Italy. Like Enzo Ferrari he had racing in his veins, Antonio his father was a talented and well known Grand Prix racing driver famed through his races in the 1920's driving various Alfa Romeo cars.
 
The Ascari supercar heritage heads to Dorset in England. In1995, a racing team started to develop a limited edition super car, the Ecosse this was then launched in 1998.
 
two years later in the year 2000 Ascari built their first facility in Banbury, the reason behind this was to create a place where development could start on the 2nd Ascari car, the KZ1, and also to give their racing Team, aptly name The Ascari team a base to work from. This brought road-and-race side of the Ascari group together for the first time in one place. The Banbury development centre, demonstrates the Italian car founders history and accomplishments and outlines their racing philosophy,. the factory itsself demonstrates modern production techniques. The new centre still seemed to lack the energy needed to push it further, later in 2000 the first Ascari world Race Resort was founded.
Ascari Race Resort
 
A new concept in racing and seeing where it all began, the resort is located in a beautiful area in Southern Spain a relaxed, yet exhilerating experience redefining the term 'race and relax'. The chance to live an Italian racing car drivers life, the Ascari race resort combines luxury and adrenalin with a modern race circuit.
A10
 
Watch out for our review on the Ascari A10 as test driven by Jeremy Clarkson on Top Gear. The car that now holds the record by the stig on the BBc programs test track.

VW Camper Gallery

VW Camper

VW Bus, van, splitty 

The Volkswagen Camper idea
 
This german vehicle is as common today as it was when it was launched at the end of World War II, with today many versions of the VW camper being restored back to original spec.
 
During WW2 the Wolfsberg factory was taken over by the British, to ensure the German engineers could no longer manufacture weapons and vehicles for their armed forces. The Volkswagen factory ran extremely well before and after the conflict, however it had a glitch which meant production suffered in the early years. The German car plant needed to transport parts from one side of the factory to the other anightmare for engineers and mechanics,however this was solved by stripping down a couple of Beetle cars and loading them and ferrying the parts from one side to the other, essentially turning them into transporters.
 
In 1947 an importer from the Netherlands Ben Pon an importer sketched a picture bearing a striking resemblance to the Beetle based van from Wolfsberg. Two years later a similar vehicle to the sketch was unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show, people were amazed and in essence were seeing an early version of the camper, they immediately drew the conclusion it was a horse and cart with mechanics.
 
The first VW camper van was born from this concept. This idea started life as a box on wheels, a170 cubic ft box built over a four wheeled chassis. Over the coming five years 90 versions were released everything from delivery to ice cream vans, around 50 were purely for delivery purposes ranging from mobile milking machines to milk floats & mobile veterinaries.
 
The emergency services even jumped on the band wagon Police, fire, ambulances all camper based.
 
When these unique vehicles were released in the USA around the mid 1950's, they flew. The camper was a real home from home it came with a sink & large living space. By 1963 US citizens had bought well over 150,000 campers.
Spilt window (Splitty), Samba and Bay
 
The splitty shortened from Split window was the first camper released. This van is one of the most desired vehicles today in the vintage volkswagen market and sells from anything upto £25,000 restored. The Split ceased production in 1967 and was replaced by the Bay, this van was quite different to its predecessor, many refinements were added however the characteristic split windows disappeared to make room for winders, on the plus side the top speed was increased to 80 mph.
 
VW Bay camper ad
 
The Bay bus made the simple camper van a 1975 icon, The Hanover factory in Germany manufactured over 4,000,000 models, this spurred a range of engine sizes from the 1600 and 2000 cc all air cooled like the supercar manufacturer Porsche.
 
VW believed in the Bus Camper with such conviction that they offered a Gold watch to any driver who managed to get their bay campers over 100,000 miles, this turned out to be a bad idea, as over 160,000 watches were given to drivers due to it' s proven continual reliability. In 1979 production ceased and the T25 replaced it, even now it is still manufactured in South America along with the Citi Golf.
 
Over 5 000 000 VW were campers made and still are seen cruising all over the world, owners vary from surfers to enthusiasts even tradesmen.pa friends -

 

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VW Mk2 Golf GTI

The Volkswagen Golf Mk2

A2 / Typ 19E / 1G, 1983–1992 - As good as the Mk1

The VW Mk2 Golf was introduced in 1983 in Europe (In the US 1985 as the Rabbit) as a direct replacement for the infamous Mk1. The second mark has a larger body, a more modern interior including a bigger dashboard and the addition of MFA and electric windows to mention a few. The new model came with new styling including arches and sill covers in addition there was a wide range of different body and engine options, ranging from a 5 door 1.4 model to the flaired arched Rallye with a 16V 1.8 supercharged engine.

Which model?

The Mk2 came in a range of models from the 1.2 GL to the G60, the GTI was by far the most popular, even this model was available with either a DOHC 1.8 litre 16-valve or an 8V 1.8 engine. This car runs a Bosch fuel injection system the same as many other modern cars of that time e.g. Escort XR3i. As with all performance cars there is always a 'warm hatch' the Golf Driver. This was released 1988, it came with the GTI styling inside and out, which was basicallyt a twin headlamp grille, wheelarchs, the main difference was the 1.6  engine. The final years of production for the Driver meant it was treated to a carburetted 1781 cc engine.
 

16V Mk2 Golf GTI 1991 | H Plate

Rallye

However it seemed the GTi wasn't fast enough for all, therefore Volkswagen decided to produce a flagship Golf, The Rallye and G60 both basically the same, supercharged with either 2wd or 4wd options. The Rallye was a racing variant, it came with a racing interior, cloth or leather sports buckets, fabricated wide arches at the front and rear, rectangular headlamps with a smaller grille, streamlined bumpers with a unique style. Only 5000 were ever manufactured all left hand drive and hand built in Belgium between 1989 and 1990 to a preset rally specification. These cars were £20,000 when they were released, but for 20 grand you got All wheel drive, a supercharged 1800 double overhead cam engine with ABS braking discs all round and on 205 rubber.

G60

The G60 was subtler version still same setup but much more tame looking it had a few tell tale signs it came with a wider version of the plastic GTI arch. The two cars also came with specialist wheels. There was also a handful of handmade limited edition each one these autos was engineered and tuned by an elite team at the Volkswagen Motorsport division. The car ran a supercharged 16V GTI DOHC engine combined with a sports gearbox and all wheel drive Synchro.
 
71 Limited edition Black Golf G60's exist all with four doors except two extremely rare three door models, these were fitted with a slimmer rectangle headlight grille & a blue surround (red symbolised a GTI) with motorsport logos, these two G60 autos were air conditioned, and came witha unique number and plaque.
 
One of these motors would have cost you £25,000, these Golfs were mainly sold to Volkswagen & Audi executives and other VAG management, these cars were capable of producing 212 bhp, the most powerful until the MKV Golf R32 was unleashed in 2003.
 

Diesel & GTD

The new Mk2 Golf was even available in a diesel and turbo diesel engine options. The one that shot to fame was the Golf GTD, basically a diesel powered GTI.
Country
 
VW had all bases covered they released a model called the Golf Country, an off-road variant ideal for farmers. The Country cam with, four wheel drive , lengthened suspension travel, bullbars, skidplate with external spare wheel. In the EU the Golf Country came with either a 75 BHP 1.6 GTD engine or a 114 bhp 1.8 8v petrol. It was a common site in many Alpine regions around Europe.
Styling over time
 
The Mk2 Golf had facelift after facelift . The first major one was the addition "Big Bumpers" in 1989 onwards in European markets. A deeper and larger bumper, colour coded on the bottom and black at the top. The quarter panel window was also disposed of, making the glass one piece. The grill slats were also made larger and lessened after 1987. Other extras included power steering, electric windows, pop out rear windows, smoked indicators & lenses and Jetta lights were used in the US on the Rabbit.
 
The Golf GTI won Motor Trend's car of the year 1985, and was awarded VW Vortex's "Best Golf of all time".
 
However overall Mk2 failed to achieve its goal, this was to imitate the same presence of the Mk1, it had already lost its audience to the French Peugeot 205. However this hard should have never been made to attempt to replace the Mark1 , its a real car in its own right.

"Changes" Volkswagen advertising campaign

 
The 1987 British advertisement "Changes" starring Paula Hamilton, who happened to bear a striking resemblance to the late Lady Diana, Princess of Wales. It was supposed to strategise the shock tactic, it worked like a dream this combined with " If only everything in life was as reliable as a Volkswagen". This make the Mk2 Golf and overnight success.

 

The ad by Volkswagen shows a lady looking similar to Di leaving her house posting her wedding ring through her letter box ,ripping off her pearl necklace and throwing a mink coat then throwing her keys to at her cat awww, then she hovers over a drain with her Golf Mk2 keys, then decides no and gets in and drives off, then the slogan appears.pa friends -

 

 

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VW Mk1 Golf GTI

This new breed of hot hatch came with a front wheel drive system, 4 gears and a water-cooled engine.

Wheels magazine 'Car of the Year 1975 VW Golf'

Matey - Matey 2006
 
A Euro Mk1 Golf GTI with european / US chrome strip bumpers, euro styling and deep dish rims.
 
The concept car was designed and engineered by a VW team out of work, the deisgn for the final version of VW Golf was by Italdesign studio designer Giorgetto Giugiaro. The GTI model was fuel injected therefore increasing the 1588 cc engine to 108 bhp.
 
In 2004 the Rabbit / Mk1 GTI was named 3rd best car of the 1980's by Sports Car International. Jeremy Clarkson even says its the best hot hatch ever made.
 
Matey - Matey 2006
A Euro Mk1 with cross hair crystal headlamps dropped on Porsche rims

VW in the US

In 1978 Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, Volkswagen were the first Euro car manufacturer to manufacture vehicles in the US. James McLernon former Chevrolet exec was giving the task of making it run. McLernon for some unkown reason attempted to "Americanise" the Rabbit by reducing its qualities first he softened the sports suspension and made the interior from much lower quality materials. VW followers and German company execs were outraged. Therefore in 1983, the Pennsylvania VW plant went back back to fitting stiffer suspension and a high quality interior trim. The Rabbit GTI and first ever Caddy were manufactured at the US plant also.
A change?
 
In 1980 across the Euro range a face lift was applied, larger rear lamp clusters replaced the small design, jetta style headlamps in the US and a new dashboard with display.
 
 
Mk1 Clipper Convertible Anodised filler cap M3 lenses and deepdish wheels
Drop top cabby
 
The Golf convertible, Cabriolet or rag top was manufactured from 1980 to 1993 (A Mk2 Cab was never made, this meant the Mk1 was continued witha few slight modifications, until the intro of the Mk3). The Cabrio came in a range of limited edition designs including the Coco Channel, Karmann Ghia, Rivage and the Sportline, the newer version came with a transverse roll bar, reinforced body, luxury interior and on some models a power hood.
 
The A1 Mk1 drop top has a unibody construction and built exclusively a Karmann. VW supplied the interior, suspension luxury and water cooled engine and Karmann fitted it. There was a range of hoods available a budget vinyl, standard and a premium Mohair all insulated with horse hair and either manually or powered up and down, later models came equipped Mohair and glass rear window as standard.
 
 
2008 and in South Africa the Mk1 Golf is still manufactured, a four-door "Citi" & a Caddy known as the Pickup.
 
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VW history

The history of Volkswagen Cars & Campers

The Wolfsberg story and the VW Golf Generation
 
Although the VW Beetle reached cult classic status throughout Europe, and the camper vans had sold well, the brand popularity began to decline by the mid 1970's. With the drop in Beetle sales, VW had to find another way forward, as people were choosing water cooled engines over their air cooled, German counterparts. This new way was the Golf, hailed as the saving grace of Volkswagen.
 
By now, VW had bought Audi, and began production on their new front wheel drive car, the Rabbit. Since its inception, there have been many incarnations of the Golf - 5 to date. This new found popularity led to a reincarnation of the beloved Beetle, and a revamp of the Camper into the Micro Bus, among other new vehicles.
 
Now called VAG - (the Volkswagen Audi Group) things continue to look good for the motor group, with names such as Lamborghini, Bentley, Skoda and Bugatti bringing with them their strength and prestige.
America
 
VW beat the Japanese to begin trading in the US market, and by the end of the 1960's, had become the brand name to be reckoned with. Beating Nissan to the Number One spot, the Beetle and the Ghia were shining examples of German automotive genius. 
 
Yet the Arabian Oil Embargo of 1973 hit VAG hard, and by 1993, the company had hit an all - time low of only 49,000 sales, a top figure that was less than 9% of their peak sales only twenty years before. Another rethink was in order, and a new marketing campaign to focus on the Jetta was organised.
 
With the new marketing strategy, the emphasis was on fun loving, energetic, young people. Leaving young married couples and parents behind, the brand was seen as the epitome of youth culture - cutting edge and cool again thanks to the successful new Jetta image.

New Strategies

This new rougher edged marketing did the trick, and by 1996, VW was back! Enjoying the kind of success that gave them a sales increase of nearly 700%, the Rabbit and the Passat were selling well by 1997.
 
Following this major run of success, VW got set to launch its new generation Beetle. Using this as a critical part of future business strategy, the company planned on adding an SUV and pickup ranges. After these would come the luxury range of Volkswagen.
 
Following on from the success of the Golf at this time, a Plus version was released - the same Golf only bigger! Other variations on this popular theme included an R32 model, which boasted an Audi 3.2L quattro engine. So successful, new versions of the Polo and Passat were also released!
 
Nowadays, the most recent versions include the Eos convertible, the Phaeton and the hybrid Passat and the next generation Jetta, Fox, Lupo and super mini the Up.
 
The newest Golf is the W12 - a wider version of the Mark 5 and the Golf R.
 




 

 

Toyota timeline

Toyota guide

1933 to present
 
1933 : The famed and globally renown Toyota started out with the Toyota Automatic Loom Works, a weaving machinery manufacturer in Japan, formed a car manufacturing division.
 
1937 : The Car division of Toyota Automatic Loom Works is officially named Toyota Motor Co.
 
1947 : Production of Cars ceases during World War II, Toyota commence producing cars again after the end.
 
1950s : Toyota introduces a legendary sytem the just-in-time delivery system.
 
1957: The first US Japanese Toyota dealer opens, the dealership known as Rose Toyota.
 
1958 :Rose Toyota Sells its first car Toyota in the U.S, a 4 door saloon the 'Toyopet Crown'.
 
1959: Toyota decide to open a manufacturing plant in Brazil, the first Toyota plant outside Japan.
 
1968 : The economy size Toyota Corolla is introduced in the U.S.
 
1973 : A hike in fuel prices during the 1970's OPEC oil crisis boosts the popularity of Japanese economy cars where as other manufacturers suffered such as Lamborghini 
 
 
 
1975 : Toyota outsells Volkswagen to become the best selling car (foreign import) brand in the U.S.
 
1978: The first incarnation of the legendary Toyota Supra Mark 1 makes is released in Japan
 
1979: The Toyota Supra Mark 1 known as the Celica Supra is eventually released in the US
 
1982: The Toyota Supra Mark 2 is released in Japan & the US
 
1983 : The Toyota Camry is launched.
 
1984 : Toyota Open their 1st US assembly plant in Fremont, California, this was a joint venture between General Motors Corp & Toyota.
 
1986: The Toyota Mark 3 is released 
 
1989 : The 1st completely owned major American Toyota plant, in Georgetown, Ky is opened. Introducing Lexus, the luxury division of Toyota.
 
1993 : The Toyota Supra mark iv is released
 
2000 : The petrol & electric Prius hybrid sedan is introduced to the US market
 
2002 : Toyota manufactures its 10 000, 000th vehicle inside North America.
 
2003: Toyota becomes the world's second-biggest car manufacturer, with 6.78 million vehicles sold worldwide.

 

 

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