Twenty years of bleeding-edge supercars, nostalgic classics, soaring bikes, grumbling racers and motorsport royalty were celebrated at this year's Goodwood Festival of Speed. Goodwood shared its anniversary with a number of friends, including Aston Martin, McLaren and the Porsche 911, in an event that saw a record 196,000 visitors enjoy a warm weekend filled with tire smoke, hill climbing and auto sightseeing of the highest order.
Two drivers tied for this year's fastest hill climb in a time of 45.86 seconds: Gregory Gilvert in the Peugeot 208 T16 Pikes Peak, which smashed the Pikes Peak record just weeks ago, and reigning Goodwood hill climb record holder Nick Heidfeld in a Lola-Toyota B12/60. Favorite Justin law lagged just behind in his Jaguar XJR8/9 with a time of 45.95 seconds.
One of the biggest plot lines of the 2013 Festival of Speed was the 50th anniversary of the Porsche 911, the legendary sports coupe that has participated in every Festival of Speed since the event's inception in 1993. The story was conveyed to festival goers without any words, thanks to a 112 ft (34 m) high bespoke sculpture displayed just outside the Goodwood House. A trio of 911 cars watched over the masses throughout the festival: a blue coupe from 1965, a yellow 2.7 RS from 1973, and the latest all-wheel drive Type 991 Carrera 4.
Of course, Porsche is a car company, not a design firm or art gallery. It also established a strong dynamic presence, with regular demonstration runs of seven generations of 911 road cars and 911 race cars. The participants included a 1967 911 that has been traveling the world serving as ambassador for Porsche's "Follow the 911" tour and the 1973 911 RSR 2.8, which won the Sebring 12 Hours that year.
Beyond the 911, the Porsche opened up its collection, rolling out a variety of historical and brand-new cars, including the public dynamic debut of the 918 Spyder, a Paris-Dakar Carrera 4x4 rally car and a Porsche 917 KH Le Mans race car.
Along with the Porsche 918 Spyder, the McLaren P1 is one of the most high-tech supercars of 2013, and like the 918, the P1 made its public dynamic debut at Goodwood. Featuring a more subdued black-out paint job than the bright orange and yellow McLarens we're used to, the P1 showed onlookers what a 903 bhp, hybrid-powered carbon fiber supercar looks like rolling when around the pavement. Turns out, it looks pretty damn good.
McLaren also highlighted its prestigious F1 heritage with both personalities and hard goods. Vodafone McLaren Mercedes team drivers like Jenson Button were on hand, as were a slew of successful race cars, including the MP4-13, which won the 1998 Driver’s and Constructor’s championships with Mika Häkkinen behind the wheel and set an unbeaten 41.6-second record up the Goodwood Hill at the 1999 Festival of Speed, piloted that time by Nick Heidfeld.
McLaren also debuted the 12C GT Sprint.
As if the debut of two super-hybrids wasn't enough, Jaguar pulled its biggest trick out of its sleeve by rolling up with a C-X75. It may be three years since the C-X75 first surprised auto lovers at the 2010 Paris Motor Show, but the car, one of only five in existence, still looks brand new. Jaguar cancelled development of the 850-hp hybrid last year, so Goodwood provided what's likely to be a very rare chance to see it drive. At the event, the car used a 1.6-liter four cylinder, with both turbo and superchargers, in place of the micro turbines on the original concept.
The festivities weren't all about established sports car brands reaching their golden years. A number of completely new or infant brands were also on hand to flaunt their wares.
Having made its world debut at the Geneva Motor Show earlier this year, the newest GTA Spano got outside and stretched its legs at Goodwood 2013. The Spanish supercar is powered by a 900-hp, 8.4-liter twin-turbo V10 engine, pushing the car to 62 mph (100 km/h) in 2.9 seconds before speeding all the way to 217 mph (350 km/h). Thanks to a carbon fiber, titanium honeycomb and Kevlar monocoque and carbon fiber body, the Spano weighs just 2,976 lb (1,350 kg). While we haven't heard of a roadster version, the panoramic glass roof delivers the next best thing. GTA plans to build 99 Spano models.
Mexican start-up VŪHL revealed a different kind of sports car at the festival. Designed to deliver the gritty, agile, track-clawing experience of a lightweight trackster like the Ariel Atom, the 05 is a street-track roadster powered by a 285-bhp 2.0-liter Ford Ecoboost engine. When tucked neatly in the 1,530-lb (694-kg) roadster, that engine is certain to bring a few thrills.
Mercedes made good on its promise to bring the 300 SLR Uhlenhaut Coupé out of its collection for Goodwood. One of only two versions of the ultralight racer ever made, the Uhlenhaut is largely considered to be among the most valuable cars in the world. Considering that Mercedes is unlikely to sell it, it's essentially priceless.
The Uhlenhaut may not have a price, but another historical Mercedes became the most valuable car ever sold at auction. The 1954 W 196 race car that gave five-time champion Juan Manuel Fangio his second F1 world title sold for a world record £19,601,500 (US$30 million). According to Bonhams, the auction house that held the gavel, the new record is more than £9,000,000 ($13.7 million) over the previous record set by Ferrari in 2011.
Just try to pick a favorite from the dozens of sexy cars in the photo gallery.
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