Over the years, we have written many times about the infamous Gymkhana series, so it should come as no surprise we are writing about the latest installment. All of the earlier videos have become viral sensations, because the King of “Hoon”, Ken Block continues to push the boundaries behind the wheel. The new and ninth version likely will too, as it captures the epic “Hooning” tradition of the rally star and his drifting genius.
While it was originally scheduled to be filmed in Sydney to tie in with the Australian Forza Horizon 3 video game, authorities said Block was too much of a “Hoon” for the Land Down Under and would only allow him to make the video on private property. Instead, Block chose to film in an abandoned industrial area in New York state. Yeah Buffalo!
With so many global corporations shying away from the single big endorsement deal as a result of today’s fragmented online world we do appreciate Ford’s decision to buck the trend. The combination of a significant amount of both resources and dollars enables the team to create a world-class product in the Gymkhana video series.
As part of Block’s deal with Ford Performance that sees him compete in the FIA World Rallycross championship, these videos feature him driving the custom-built 600 horsepower Ford Focus RS rally machine. I’m sure the real ROI isn’t great, but it does make you want to take a Ford Focus for a test drive.
For anyone that has had the opportunity to experience Laguna Seca in person knows how challenging of a track it is to drive so it is no wonder this video is getting lots of traction online. Posted recently, by our friends over at Jalopnik, the video is from this past weekend’s BMW CCA Club Racing Oktoberfest event at the Northern California track. It was shot from behind the wheel of an E46 M3 race car driven by the talented driver and coach Anthony Magagnoli of DriveFasterNow.com.
Turn up the volume and watch in awe as Anthony drives his M3 from last to first in just three laps, despite a failing ABS system and a very loud sound that later turned out to be the exhaust mid-pipe falling off the header. Bravo Anthony! Bravo!
On May 7th, 2016, Joshua D. Brown was killed when his Tesla Model S crashed into the side of a tractor-trailer, leading to an NHTSA investigation of Tesla’s Autopilot feature.
According to the statement released on Thursday by Tesla detailing the accident, both the car’s Autopilot system and the driver failed to apply the brake pedal leading up to the collision with the tractor-trailer.
Joshua Brown was an active fan of his Tesla Model S and its Autopilot feature, posting a video to his YouTube channel of the technology in action. In Tesla’s official statement Brown is referred to as a friend of the EV community. Brown was a Navy Seal who later started his own tech company, Nexu Innovations Inc. You can read his obituary here.
At the time of the accident, there had been witness reports that a Harry Potter movie could be heard playing in the car after the crash. However, this has now been verified in a new police report coming out today. Sergeant Kim Montes of the Florida Highway Patrol said a DVD player was found inside the wrecked Model S after the crash, according to a phone interview with the Associated Press.
Spring is finally here in Toronto and the last two weekends were our first taste of the good weather after another brutal winter. Hopefully you have been able to get the summer rides out of storage and were out cruising at some point.
With the great weather comes the opportunity to show your ride off while also checking out other enthusiast events. To help mark your calendars this year we have put together a short list (apologies if we have missed things) of some of the key auto events happening in Toronto and surrounding area:
Petrolicious has published a cool story about Nissan’s creative advertising style in the early days around its flagship sport coupe the Nissan Skyline. It all began in the 1970s with a young and “in love” caucasian couple exploring Japan in their new coupe. Honestly, you watch this ad now and it’s hard to believe this was ever popular anywhere but having lived in Japan at one time I understand their affinity to anything Western.
Nissan built on this 70s love theme and in the 80s embraced Paul Newman as he became the new face of the Skyline brand as a result of his racing exploits with Nissan US.
I had no idea Paul Newman hustled Skylines and I bet not many people in North America know either. I always thought Paul Walker was the first Hollywood actor to love the Skyline. Well, you really do learn something new everyday.
Although it has been a much tamer winter here in Toronto compared to last year, Spring can’t come soon enough. Here’s a little cacophony of sounds to get you all over this final hump. Make sure to crank up the volume on this insane video from the folks at VisoRacer.
Nothing beats the sound of a powerful V8 engine…..Nothing!
With Valentine’s Day just behind us, we thought it was time to share some real man toys that would make any enthusiast grin from ear to ear. Check out this unbelievable Russian made skid steer on steroids called the Sherp ATV. For slightly under $50,000, buyers can configure this unstoppable machine to their personal preference while literally being able to drive through anything, anywhere. The Sherp ATV weighs 2,866 pounds and comes with a 44 horsepower 1.5 liter Kubota four-cylinder diesel engine linked to a five-speed manual transmission. Specs are as follows – 28 mph on land, or 3.7 mph in water, depending on the wind and it will crawl at up to 9.3 mph in first gear.
Some tragic news came out yesterday as police confirmed reports that Dave Mirra, one of the world’s best BMX freestyle riders and rally car drivers died of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound in Greenville, North Carolina.
Authorities said they responded to an apparent suicide and discovered his body in a truck. Mirra, 41, was married with two children. He had been visiting friends in the area, officials said.
Growing up, Dave Mirra was an idol to me and my friends so this news really does hit home. Mirra had super human talent and from all the coverage over the years he seemed like an absolute gem of a person which makes this all the more tragic.
Here is a recent tribute video of Dave Mirra.
Here are some older video highlights from Dave’s time as a driver for Team Subaru Rally USA.
Some interesting news came out of the Montreal International Auto Show from Chevrolet this week with the announcement that the all-new 2016 Spark will start at just $9,995 plus freight and delivery charges – the lowest MSRP of any car in Canada.
2016 Chevrolet Spark
Having reviewed early versions of the Spark we were interested in this story as our experience with the 2013 version was very positive. Check out our earlier review.
The 2016 model is front wheel drive, four-passenger sub compact equipped with a 1.4-litre four-cylinder engine that develops 98 horsepower and 94 lb-ft of torque (a 16-percent increase over the previous model). A five-speed manual transmission is included, while a continuously variable automatic is optional. It comes with solid safety features such as 10 standard airbags and back-up camera, along with technology that isn’t typically offered in this segment for this price. The Spark comes with a standard 7-inch MyLink touch-screen infotainment system providing owners a smart and simple way to access Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, leveraging the latest technology that customers use every day. OnStar with a 4GLTE Wi-Fi hotspot is also standard.
2016 Chevrolet Spark
In today’s age with so many cars becoming exponentially more expensive it is refreshing to see a manufacturer providing customers with a value focused model.
For more information and specifications on the 2016 Chevrolet Spark, see the latest product guide on media.gm.ca.
We’re already crazy Porsche fans here at RedlineNorth, so pretty much anything Porsche related gets us pumped up. However, this new promo video from the Porsche AG marketing department will make any racing fan warm and fuzzy on a cold winter day. Kudos to Porsche for hitting the mark with their 2016 racing season preview video.