Welcome to the Hooniverse News! As always, this is a weekly recap of the biggest stories in the automotive industry without the fluff or bull. This week: McLaren drops the top on the 765LT because they know rich people will buy it, Ford honors Women Airforce Service Pilots from WWII with one-off Mach-E, Subaru drops final teaser for 2022 WRX and announces a reveal date, rumors suggest that the next Camaro may become an EV muscle sedan, and GM is suing Ford for using the word ‘Cruise’. Plus your news for the week.
McLaren 765LT Spider
This week, McLaren provided the answer to the question “what if 765LT but Spider?” Available in limited quantities of just 765 units globally, it’s the 765LT Spider, the fastest drop-top McLaren in company history. It’s a record that will stand for at least another year. McLaren expects it to be a hot item as the also limited 765LT coupe it’s based on sold out rather quickly.
Everything that made the 765LT one of the most engaging and powerful cars in its class is preserved if not amplified in its transition to a Spider. An electrically-operated, one-piece carbon fiber retractable hard top raises and lowers in just 11 seconds at speeds of up to 31 mph. The quick transition allows one to begin enjoying one of the best driver’s cars in a whole new way with little delay. The quad-tip titanium exhaust will fill the cabin with some sweet twin-turbo V8 sounds. But an even quicker way to remove any barriers between that noise and your ears is to just lower the power rear window which can be operated separately from the hard top. Any convertible/spider with that feature is alright in my book.
The only compromise to performance comes in the form of extra weight from the folding hard top mechanisms. 108 pounds is added which brings the total up to just 3,060 pounds. At least that’s according to McLaren, who also said that the 765LT coupe weighed 3,060 pounds. The functional carbon fiber aero kit is the same as well, though the active rear wing was recalibrated to account for the changes in airflow with the roof down. The rest of the car, including its amazing powertrain and chassis, is unchanged. McLaren’s carbon monocoque chassis is strong enough on its own that no additional support was needed for its transition to a roofless wonder.
The McLaren 765LT Spider will be priced at 1909330.51 doge coin when it arrives in the US. Other market prices will vary.
Ford honors WASPs with Mach-E
If you caught my super exclusive and not at all clickbait recap of all of Ford’s one-off show cars for the EAA AirVenture Oshkosh airshow, you’ll know that there’s finally a new car to talk about. For nearly two decades, Ford has supported the Experimental Aircraft Association and their famous AirVenture Oshkosh event financially. And for at least half of that time they’ve supported them with special aviation-themed cars which get auctioned off for one of EAA’s charities. This is the thirteenth car they’ve made and it pays tribute to an outstanding group of women who helped deliver victory in WWII.
This not-a-Mustang Mach-E honors the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) of WWII. Comprised of around a thousand women, they were tasked with flying brand new combat aircraft of all types from the factories to air bases around the country. They were crucial because male aviators were either at home training new aviators or were overseas fighting. Over 60 million miles were flown by WASPs and 38 of them paid the ultimate price. Despite this, they were not officially recognized as active military personnel until 1977 when they were granted retroactive military status.
It’s these brave women that Ford is honoring with this WASP-edition Mach-E. It sports a custom paint scheme with period-correct military badging as you’d see on the planes they were flying. A silver body with black and yellow accents was a common paint scheme of the time. The WASP wings are proudly displayed on the fender, hood, and seat headrests. And on the color-matching center console, a number ‘38’ represents all those who lost their lives while ensuring that our combat pilots had fresh new planes to fly.
“It was hard not to get a little teary-eyed as we put the finishing touches on this vehicle,” said Kristen Keenan, Ford designer who worked on the project. “I have never worked on a memorial project before. Commemorating this group of women through the vehicle design was an honor.”
This car would have been auctioned off last night with all proceeds going to EAA’s initiative to provide young women and underserved youths more access to a career in the aviation industry. I cannot find the final auction price for this thing. But so far Ford has raised well over $4 million for EAA charities with previous projects.
Some final Subaru WRX teasers
Apparently there will be a New York International Auto Show this year and it’ll be on the weekend of August 19th. It’s on that stage where Subaru plans to unveil the all-new 2022 WRX.
One final teaser was granted to us peons and it shows the back half of the sedan shrouded in a dust cloud. We knew it would still keep its four door sedan body style already, but Jalopnik was able to find a few more clues from the teaser video they released as well. Black plastic body cladding and taillights that are reminiscent of the new BRZ are among the little tidbits they gleaned from it. This is a new car we’ll be watching very closely. We’ll bring you more as it comes to us.
[Source: Subaru, Jalopnik]
Report: Camaro will go electric, gain a few doors
Remember when Ford came out with the electric Mach-E crossover and called it a Mustang? Those Camaro guys and gals who laughed at it are about to have to deal with something similar. But admittedly, it could be a lot cooler.
A report from Automotive News suggests that the 7th-gen Camaro will either spawn an EV sedan variant or be replaced by it all together. The term “EV muscle sedan” is being used here and Dodge did as well when they recently announced that the Charger would be turned into one of those as well. So this could be GM posturing themselves to ensure that a competitor will be ready when Dodge is. No other details are available at this point, but Hooniverse has reason to believe its cabin visibility will still be shit.
Meanwhile, Ford’s electric Mustang is still not actually a Mustang and is in fact a small crossover. If Chevy and Dodge are busy preparing to take the muscle wars into the battery-powered future they keep telling us about, then Ford has to respond. Ford never said the Mach-E would be the only EV Mustang, so it’s all but certain that the pony car wars will be alive and well when everything is electric.
GM sues Ford for using the word Cruise
On this week’s edition of “who’s suing someone over dumb shit now”, GM is suing Ford for using the word “Cruise”. The lawsuit alleges that Ford naming their new driver assistance package with some form of hands-free driving “BlueCruise”. GM who has something similar called “Super Cruise” and “Hyper Cruise” and a vaporware robo-taxi service called “Cruise”, say that “BlueCruise” sounds too similar.
“While GM had hoped to resolve the trademark infringement matter with Ford amicably, we were left with no choice but to vigorously defend our brands and protect the equity our products and technology have earned over several years in the market,” GM said of the lawsuit in a report obtained by Jalopnik.
Ford’s response is that the claim is “meritless and frivolous”. They also correctly assert that “drivers for decades have understood what cruise control is, every automaker offers it, and ‘cruise’ is common shorthand for the capability”.
I could see GM’s point if the word “cruise” wasn’t already commonplace in the auto industry. In a different context it could be confusing. But Ford is right. Cruise control and other derivatives are commonplace. Nobody worth caring about will see Ford’s BlueCruise in an F-150 brochure and wonder how GM’s Super Cruise got in there.
After all, everyone knows the real blunder is the huge opportunity GM missed by not calling it Super Cruze. Ha, get it? Cause Chevy Cruze? Ha. Haha. Can you believe that women don’t talk to me?
What’s your automotive news?
That’s all I’ve got for you this week, so now it’s your turn. If you saw anything, fixed something, broke everything, or otherwise did anything even remotely car related that you want to share with your fellow hoon, sound off in the comments.
Have a good weekend.