LOCATION SPOTTED: Dayton Ritz & Osborne Insurance (East Hampton)
- Acceleration 0 to 60: 4.3 seconds
- Braking 60 to 0: 104 feet
- Quarter Mile: 12.4 seconds
- Skidpad: 0.89 g
- Slalom: 68.5 mph
Big, fast European sedans are in a huge abundance at the moment, and have been since the late 90s. Though Mercedes and BMW ran the show before that time, with the resurgence of the Audi S8 in the early 2000s and the fast Jaguar XJR even more recent than that, there has been an endless crawl between these four makes to produce the best executive sedan.
Many opinions have risen from several automotive journalists. Most agree that the new Audi S8 is the best option at the moment and currently outclasses all of its competitors (especially the Bimmer) for it is more dynamic, faster and more subtle. I agree with them, the Audi is indeed all of those things, but is that what you really need in a pseudo-sport luxury sedan? I think not. Once a buyer passes up the BMW M5 or Audi S6 and moves on to what I call the “luxe-barge” class (i.e. the Mercedes S-Class, the BMW 7-Series, etc.) they care primarily about comfort, sheer engine size and power, and (most importantly) prestige. The Alpina delivers these in spades for a buyer who wants people to notice him or her going around a corner, versus them noticing (or even caring) about what their car is doing.
First off, the engine. This a 4.4 liter twin-turbo V8 engine making 540 horsepower and 538 pound feet of torque. The Audi makes 520 hp and 481 pound-feet from a 4.0 liter engine. Which is more powerful?
Second, the name. Alpina sounds fancy, because it is. Alpina is a German tuning company founded in 1965 and has been exclusive to BMW since 1970 and is comparable to Mercedes AMG or Audi RS, but it stresses luxury far more than sport. This better suits a car of this caliber (and girth) and makes the car rare and comfortable, but still plenty fast. The Audi S8 doesn’t even belong under the Audi RS umbrella, but it is just another Audi built in the same fashion. Which is more prestigious?
Overall, the BMW possesses the X-Factor that no other sedan of this price-range can match. Unless a customer is caught up on cylinder counts and needs a V12, then perhaps a 760Li or Mercedes S65 AMG will suit better. However, when people see a car that looks the way the B7 does and the bold ALPINA name written on the truck (and subtly on the bottom front bumper) they will notice it. They all will.
LOCATION SPOTTED: Pierre’s Restaurant (Bridgehampton)
- Acceleration 0 to 60: 7.5 sec
- Top speed: 125 mph
- Wheelbase: 118.1 inches
- Length: 193 inches
- Width: 78.7 inches
- Weight: 5990 lbs
- Fuel capacity: 73 gallons @ 7.6 mpg
Yeah, so this is not a normal production vehicle, like at all. The LM-series was a creation whose purpose was aimed initially at the Italian armed forces. The LM001 was created in prototype form but wasn’t very balanced or capable off-road due to a rear mounted engine. Thus, in 1986, the LM002 went on as it’s successor, eventually serving as a brash alternative to the Hummer H1 (when the Hummer was released in 1992).
The LM002 is much different than the memorable H1, and noticeably more extreme. By the end of the H1’s production run in 2006, it developed 350 horsepower. The Lambo developed 455 horsepower from 1986 all the way to 1993 when it went off the market. The Hummer H1 received a terrible 13/17 mpg city/highway on normal diesel fuel. Not only did the Lamborghini get less than eight miles per gallon on gas fuel, but it required 73 gallons of gasoline to fill up. This means that the LM002 has the largest fuel tank of any non-commercial vehicle in history and that it is also the only vehicle that hates polar bears.
Interior Shot Taken from GermanCarScene.com
It’s not all big bad numbers with the LM002, it rides and handles relatively well, cornering is a dizzying .72 g, but remember, this car was conceived in 1986. That was a time when most cars drove poorly regardless. The interior of the LM002 is where it really shines. Because the LM002 is a Lamborghini, every surface is covered in rich leather and the seats are supportive and comfortable, something that cannot be said for the H1. Seating is limited to a mere four occupants (like the H1), however, the Lambo features al fresco seating for an EXTRA four in the pickup-style bed. Imagine going 125 miles per hour facing sideways outside the cabin. Crazy
Rear Seat View, taken from conceptcarz.com
LOCATION SPOTTED: Pierre’s Restaurant (Bridgehampton)
- Acceleration 0 to 60: 4.7 sec
- Braking 60 to 0: 115 feet
- Quarter Mile: 13.1 sec
- Skidpad: 0.93 g
- Slalom: TBD
The Aston Martin Vanquish is a very interesting car, it doesn’t really need an elaborate description of how it’s styled, but here it goes. Because the elegantly styled V12 Vanquish was designed largely by Ian Callum, who also penned the DB7 Vantage, there’s a strong resemblance between the two sports cars. With side vents and a larger grille that is flanked by bold auxiliary driving lamps, the V12 Vanquish looks a bit more muscular. The front fenders and hood panels incorporate finely detailed compound curves that sweep back to steeply raked windshield pillars and a low, curving roofline. Deeply sculptured sill and door panels accentuate the classic profile, and larger trapezoidal taillights sit in a slightly higher, arching tail. A chrome, racing-style fuel filler is used.
The car is obviously a much more competent car than the old DB7. No one can mess with this car. It is car that could very well be from as far back as 2001. A car that did 0 to 60 in 4.7 seconds was a car to be reckoned with back in the day. Sporting a 460 horsepower V12 (10 more than even the 2005-2008 DB9), this car was fast enough (and indeed badass enough) to make into a James Bond film Die Another Day, after two of the preceding films featured only BMWs (a terrible Z8, and an even worse Z3).
I’m happy to see that whoever owns this car can appreciate what it stands for for Aston Martin and still drives it in 2013. This is nice. Most Hamptons drivers get rid after just a few years. Keep it and maintain it.
LOCATION SPOTTED: Harbor Marina (Springs)
- Acceleration 0 to 60 : 3.6 seconds
- Braking 60 to 0 : 101 feet
- Quarter Mile: 11.1 seconds
- Skidpad: 0.99 g
- Slalom: 74 mph
This car is one of a kind. I mean there literally isn’t anything else like it that has ever been sold to the public. Try to imagine a car that costs $440,000 new, AND has a 612 hp naturally aspirated V10 engine, AND only comes with a 6-speed manual, AND weighs under 3200 lbs, AND has 335-section rear tires AND has no available sound system, even as an option. It sounds like an actual race car right? Well, it pretty much is.
In the late 90s, Porsche was forced to scrap it’s successful 911 GT1 and LMP1-98 race cars due to Formula One regulation changes. Their replacement for both these cars, was set to use a brand-new 5.7-liter V10 engine and had been in development for several years. By mid-1999, this motor development and the integration of it into the new Formula One replacement car were scrapped because Porsche executives wished to develop their rival to the new Mercedes ML, the Cayenne SUV. This required engineering expertise to be re-directed from Porsche’s motor-sport division to this new SUV project. Fortunately, Porsche was able to keep the project of the Carrera GT going with this 5.7-liter V10 and by early 2004, the first Carrera GTs were sold to the public. The Cayenne SUV development occurring at nearly the same time as that of the Porsche Carrera GT added stress to both the motor-sports department and the regular production car department and put on thousands of additional hours of research and development on both projects. Perhaps that’s part of the reason why the Carrera GT costs so much $$$$$$$$$.