Cropley on cars – desire for supercars, a day with Aston boss Andy Palmer

Thursday, December 8th, 2016 - autos, cars, motoring, news

Source : Cropley on cars – desire for supercars, a day with Aston boss Andy Palmer

Jaguar restores my faith in fast cars; Andy Palmer has big plans for Aston Martin; Goodwood remains as glorious as ever


MONDAY – I think there may be desire for my driving after all.

In recent years, I’ve become quietly desperate about the way the very quickest performance cars – McLaren 650S, Porsche GT3 as well as suchlike – impose such loads on your Centeng as they corner, brake as well as accelerate near the limit of which the idea’s all you can do to drive them precisely for more than a few minutes.

Some will dismiss This kind of as heresy, however I’m telling you the truth when I say sustained on-limit driving, even within the finest road cars, is actually a job for athletes of the Le Mans persuasion – unless, of course, you opt for the half-out-of-control-on-an-airfield thing of which so reliably sustained 
Top Gear all those years.

Funnily enough, the idea was driving the ‘continuation series’ Lightweight E-Type Jag, on its traditional-treaded Dunlop racing tyres, of which restored some of my faith.

The generous limits of This kind of car, high enough to be quick, low enough to be predictable, allow you to judge exactly how far the shapely rear will slide under power, to exit quick corners exactly on line. I suspect This kind of is actually why historic racing has become so well-known in recent times. I certainly want to experience This kind of feeling again.

WEDNESDAY – What a privilege to spend time with Aston Martin chief Andy Palmer on a busy working day (you’ll be able to read about of which online soon). Don’t believe I’ve ever learned so much in so few hours.

Although flat out all day, Palmer even found time to explain, in his office via a whiteboard, some essential principles of marketing he reckoned I was missing.

Most reassuring were the Aston chief’s plans to make the 102-year-old firm sustainably profitable by expanding its sports design range enough to protect the idea against boom as well as bust, as well as to earn sufficient ‘free cash’ with all-brand-new versions to fund the all-important design range after next. Watching Aston’s next decade is actually going to be a pleasure.  

THURSDAY – To Goodwood’s Moving Motor Show, to have my first go in Ford’s brand-new Mustang on UK soil. Henry’s people were as helpful as ever, however they had only a convertible design with the 300bhp Ecoboost turbo four on hand, as well as my choice could have been a V8 coupé.

I’d become concerned about ’Stang ride quality during early testing within the US (the vehicle literally bucked its way around Hollywood), so I was braced for rude shocks in two ways. however the idea was great. With my friend Mike driving, the idea felt supple, powerful as well as smooth. On the bumpy estate roads you use to return to the start of the famous hillclimb, the vehicle coped truly well. at This kind of point I’m lined up for a longer drive, full of desire.

As for the MMC, the idea was packed as I’ve never seen the idea packed before on a Thursday. If the looming London Motor Show next May – or the weekend’s Formula E grand prix in London’s Battersea Park – were any threat to Lord March’s famous fixture, the idea wasn’t evident. Everywhere you looked, there was the usual evidence of which Goodwood’s organisers had thought things through a little better This kind of year.     

SATURDAY/SUNDAY – The Range Rover’s away on someone else’s holiday, the Ferrari’s been grabbed for Goodwood by an extra as well as the Suzuki Celerio is actually a little smaller, so my transport for Goodwood’s big days is actually a Volkswagen Golf R,
 billed by many as the finest hot hatch, as well as one of the most versatile cars ever built.

I’m paying my dues as well as joining the fan club. the idea’s quite clear the vehicle has been created out of perfect decisions about space, styling, driving position, materials, performance level as well as much more. Its only fault is actually its own effortlessness. Without a rival permanently on hand, you’re inclined not to realise quite 
how well the idea’s doing.

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