Simon Wittenberg, Editor of Luxurious Magazine, the world’s leading online luxury news portal and digital publication, takes a look back at some of the luxury cars which made the headlines during the last twelve months, and reveals what we can expect in the coming year.
Bentley chose Russia’s Moscow International Auto Salon (MIAS) in August for the international debut of the 205 mph Continental GT Speed coupe, the fastest road car the company has ever produced. The British marque also signalled their return to motorsport with the Continental GT3 concept racer, the first time they will be hitting the track since their historic sixth Le Mans victory in France in 2003.
Just before 2012 came to a close, BMW launched their facelifted Z4 sportscar which will be arriving in showrooms from March 2013, 80 years after they first offered such an exciting concept, and will bring a higher level of specification than ever before. The headlights now include white LED corona rings and a white ‘eyebrow’ whilst three new colours of Mineral Grey, Glacier Silver and Valencia Orange have also been added to the specification. Prices range from £27,610 to £45,795.
The BMW Z4 Sportscar
Jaguar uncovered their highly anticipated F-Type two-seater which supersedes the iconic E-Type. Costing from £58,500, customers can choose from three variants of the new model which boasts the company’s most advanced iteration of Jaguar’s acclaimed rigid and lightweight aluminium architecture to date. The company’s Academy of Sports Ambassador and Olympic athlete, Jessica Ennis, made its UK dynamic debut in front of a crowd of over 500,000 people at the Lord Mayor’s Show in London.
The Jaguar F Type
Land Rover uncovered their new generation Range Rover, the world’s finest luxury SUV which retails from £71,295. The latest line-up features an Autobiography 4.4-litre SDV8, Vogue 3.0-litre TDV6 and two Autobiography models powered by the 5.0-litre LR-V8 Supercharged petrol engine. New additions in terms of equipment include panoramic and contrast roofs, and the all-aluminium body enables significantly enhanced performance and efficiency.
At the Paris Motor Show, McLaren Automotive took the wraps off a concept version of their new P1 supercar which is slated to cost in the region of £800,000 when it goes on sale in the latter part of 2013. This followed the launch of the convertible version of their 12 C model, named the 12 C Spider, which made its official European debut in the summer at the inaugural Windsor Concours of Elegance which took place within the grounds of the town’s royal residence.
The McClaren Automotive P1 Supercar
Back in April, Mercedes-Benz presented the new SL 65 AMG, the Stuttgart-based manufacturer’s V12 roadster. The AMG 6.0-litre V12 "biturbo" (twin-turbocharged) engine develops a staggering maximum output of 630 hp and maximum torque of 1000 Nm. The unrivalled performance figures of the new SL 65 AMG translate into an exceptional driving experience: 0 to 62 mph takes 4 seconds with the 125 mph mark achieved after only 11.8 seconds.
The Mercedes-Benz SL 65 AMG
Porsche upped the power stakes of its twin-turbocharged engine by 10% to 550 hp which is housed in their new flagship Cayenne Turbo S 4x4. The five-seater, which makes the sprint from 0 to 62 mph in 4.5 seconds, surpasses the driving performance of many sports cars and is priced from £107,460. In addition, the German luxury marque used the USA’s LA Auto Show in November to unveil its third generation Cayman mid-engined sports coupe, which made its very first appearance back in 2005. The latest version of this model is up to 30 kg lighter than its predecessor, and offers up to 15% greater fuel efficiency, despite its increased engine output and driving performance.
Looking forward, after what was an exciting year for the sector, 2013 is set to be a significant milestone in the history of some of the world’s best loved brands. Aston Martin will be celebrating their 100th anniversary, whilst Sant’Agata Bolognese’s Lamborghini in Italy will be commemorating their 50th birthday in the form of a parade through some of the country's most beautiful cities. Furthermore, Woking’s McLaren led by Ron Dennis will be highlighting the 50 years since Bruce McLaren founded what is now one of today’s most revered and innovative automotive and racing marques.
Luxurious Magazine will be reporting from the Geneva Motor Show in Switzerland which opens on 05 March, 2013.