Aston Martin Racing drivers have taken to the Le Mans circuit in something a little more tail happy, after trading in their Le Mans V8 Vantage GTE challengers.
Volvo’s performance division Polestar has launched a range of performance upgrades.
Polestar Performance Parts are available for the Volvo S60, V40, V60 and XC60 models to begin with, including chassis parts, wheels, exhaust, interior and exterior details, and more.
"We have received strong feedback over a long period of time from customers all over the world regarding Polestar Performance Parts. We are delighted to be able to meet the demand, starting from today. This is a product improving on the already strong base of Volvo cars in terms of performance, handling and driving pleasure," said Niels Möller, Chief Operating Officer of Polestar.
"What we learned on the racing circuits with our colleagues at Cyan Racing is that championships are not won in a single lap. The secret of our success on the tracks is in creating balanced and precise cars that are predictable for the driver to control in all situations. Lessons learned on the tracks are transferred directly into the development of our road cars and performance products. The new range of Polestar Performance Parts is no exception – they are designed and developed with the very same philosophy," said Henrik Fries, R&D Director of Polestar.
Available as a complete package, including chassis parts, wheels and tyres, intake and exhaust, as well as exterior and interior parts, all of these components will together ‘create a more compelling driving experience’, especially in combination with the Polestar Performance Optimisation, and can be bought in separate packages as well.
All performance parts are developed and tested together with Volvo Cars to the same high standards as all other products with no impact on the Volvo factory warranty.
Available from participating Volvo dealers in April, prices have yet to be announced.
Renault has confirmed a return to Formula 1 with its own team for the 2016 season, as Nissan, Infiniti and Red Bull Racing have reached mutual agreement to end their partnership a year early.
12-time Constructor's Champion Renault, with nearly 40 years in the sport, is an iconic brand in Formula 1. Work continues on finalising the terms to the acquisition of the Lotus F1 team in the 'shortest timeframe possible'. The Lotus F1 Team stood out as the ideal option for Renault having worked together for 15 years. As a full team, Renault will says it will take maximum benefit from its victories, adding 'the payback as an engine supplier proved to be limited'.
Renault has had uninterrupted involvement in Formula 1 for almost 40 years and has taken part in more than 600 grand prix, claiming 168 race wins, 12 Constructors' titles and 11 Drivers' crowns.
"Renault had two options: to come back at 100 percent or leave. After a detailed study, I have decided that Renault will be in Formula 1, starting 2016. The final details supplied by F1's main stakeholders gave us the confidence to accept this new challenge. Our ambition is to win, even if it will take some time," said Carlos Ghosn, Chairman and CEO, Renault.
Meanwhile, Nissan, Infiniti and the Red Bull Racing Formula One team have reached mutual agreements to discontinue the partnership between the two automotive brands and the F1 team at the end of December this year, one year earlier than originally stipulated.
Infiniti and Red Bull Racing started their commercial partnership in 2011 before Infiniti became the title sponsor of the team in 2013.
Audi has revealed its 2016 Le Mans 24 Hours car - the R18.
The most powerful and efficient race car Audi has ever built has been 'fundamentally re-designed' by Audi Sport. Featuring 'innovative aerodynamics' representing the next stage in lightweight design and a modified hybrid system with lithium-ion batteries for energy storage, there is also an efficiency-optimised TDI engine.
"With our new Audi R18, we're setting a clear signal: Audi continues to put the pedal to the metal in motorsport, deliberately relying on TDI - the world's most successful automotive efficiency technology - at Le Mans," says Head of Audi Motorsport Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich.
In the 2016 FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) that will start at Silverstone (Great Britain) on April 17, Audi Sport Team Joest will be fielding two new Audi R18 cars. In the interest of maximum cost efficiency, Audi and its Group sister brand Porsche, have both agreed to each compete in the Le Mans 24 Hours, the WEC season's pinnacle event, with only two instead of the most recent three cars.
"We're proud about being able to again represent the Audi brand in 2016 with such an extensive commitment in motorsport," says Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich. "The new Audi R18 marks a major step that we're expecting a lot of at Le Mans and in the WEC. In the DTM, we already had the strongest car in 2015. That's what we'd like to build upon. Plus, the high demand for the new Audi R8 LMS is equally gratifying as the many young talents that are interested in the Audi Sport TT Cup."
Following on from Jenny Holzer, Olafur Elíasson and Jeff Koons, Chinese artist Cao Fei, 37, and American artist John Baldessari, 84, will be the youngest and oldest artists represented in the collection respectively.
Fei and Baldessari are each due to create unique versions of the BMW M6 GT3 in the coming year, ready for presentations in museums in 2017, before appearing in action on the racetrack.
The BMW M6 GT3 spearheads the range of cars available to the BMW customer racing programme. It is powered by a 4.4-litre V8 engine with M TwinPower Turbo technology, which has been modified slightly for use in motor racing. The powertrain has dry sump lubrication and generates up to 585hp - with the whole car weighing less than 1,300kg.
BMW Board Member, Ian Robertson announced the collaboration of the two artists at the Guggenheim Museum in New York. 'The 40th anniversary of the BMW Art Collection is a time to look ahead. The collection is the embodiment of the cultural commitment of the BMW Group - its vehicles stand for the combination of cutting-edge technology and inspiring art.
Cao Fei dubbed by BMW as one of the most promising and Chinese artists of her generation; expressed her excitement in joining the ranks of renowned artists such as Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol and David Hockney. "I'm thrilled to be able to join the magnificent list of BMW Art Car artists. Acceleration, a concept that reminds me of my desire for speed as a runner during the Young Pioneers days, is deeply connected to the entangled contemporary relationships between velocity, energy, and the country."
John Baldessari, described as 'a great pioneer and godfather of an entire art scene in LA and beyond' told the press how he was honoured to have many of his respected peers recommend him as a BMW Art Car artist. 'Creating art that exists outside of a museum is important to me, and should be a goal for all artists. This will definitely be my fastest artwork yet.'
Since 1975 artists from the world over have been creating Art Cars on the basis of contemporary BMW automobiles. 'It is fantastic that the tradition of the BMW Art Car series will be continued with the BMW M6 GT3. Motorsport and the BMW Art Cars have always been very closely linked. Our racing cars in the special designs of well-known artists have cult status among the general public. I am convinced that the same will be true of the works by Cao Fei and John Baldessari. Naturally we want to fight for wins with the BMW M6 GT3 Art Cars. This combination of art and performance on the racetrack really is unique.' said Jens Marquardt, BMW Motorsport Director.