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, Ferrari stuns with the jaw-dropping Roma, McLaren pays homage to 60s sports cars with roofless and windowless Elva supercar, Peugeot is coming back to the WEC with a “hypercar” entry, Kia shows off the new K5 in South Korea as an Optima preview, Ford is calling their electric SUV the Mustang Mach-E, and your automotive news.
It’s always a great day when I get to write about a Ferrari that I don’t immediately hate. Ferrari has pulled the wraps off the Roma, a “2+” coupe with stunning looks and the performance to back it up. Ferrari calls it a “2+” coupe in reference to the extra space behind the front seats for luggage. Better that than two useless back seats.
There are very limited details available but we know it’s built on the bones of the Portofino (the convertible that replaced the California) but replaces the folding hardtop with a beautiful fastback. A major thing it also replaces from the Portofino is the dog shit styling. This Roma is one of the most attractive cars Ferrari has put out in years…. funny, I’ve been saying that about quite a few Ferraris lately. Is there hope? For the past few years, Ferrari subscribed to the philosophy that supercars have to draw your attention with outrageous styling and unnecessary flare. With the Roma, Ferrari is going back to a time when supercars – particularly Ferraris – caught your eyes just by being pleasing to the eyes.
The only technical details we have so far are fortunately the ones that matter most. It’s powered by a 3.9-liter turbocharged V8 that’s front-midmounted. 611 horsepower and 561 lb.-ft. of torque are on tap and it’s channeled to the rear wheels through an eight-speed DCT. With a dry weight of 3,245 pounds and the quickest gearbox in their arsenal, it sprints to 60 mph in 3.4 seconds, will reach 124 mph in 9.3 seconds, and won’t stop going till around 200 mph.
Ferrari will start showing more of it in the coming months but I’ve already seen enough to know I love it. No pricing yet but you probably don’t want to know.
[Source: Ferrari via Autoweek]
Open-cockpit supercars are all the rage apparently and McLaren wanted in. They’re coming out with a limited run of the Elva, a roofless and windowless addition to the McLaren Ultimate Series. The name comes from the McLaren-Elva race cars of the late 60s that were customer racing versions of the mighty Group 7 McLaren race cars. It was the proper name for a car that looks to recapture some of the magic of those old open-top monsters.
The modern-day Elva features a completely bespoke carbon fiber chassis and body but some hardware that’s borrowed from another serious track weapon. Sitting just behind the driver’s head is a 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V8 from the same family of engines that powers the McLaren Senna and Senna GTR. In this application it produces 804 horsepower and its job is made significantly easier thanks to the car’s weight, which McLaren says is the lightest of any road car they’ve built (numbers are still being validated). 0-62 mph takes under three seconds, 0-124 mph is 6.7 seconds (which is quicker than the Senna), and every sense is heightened by having the driver out in the elements.
Just because there’s no windows or roof doesn’t mean it has to be uncomfortable though. McLaren developed a world-first “Active Air Management System” which channels air through the nose to come out of the front clamshell at high velocity ahead of the occupants. This directs air up over the cockpit to create a “relative bubble of calm”. Various intakes and wind deflectors work the air as speeds increase. Those who really want one can opt for a fixed windscreen, but why would you? Helmets are recommended but not necessary according to McLaren. The upper cabin’s form and sculpture wraps around the driver and passenger to provide a secure environment. Pop-up rollover protection is included as well.
Despite being an open-air supercar with serious track performance capabilities, the Elva is homologated for all major markets. Only 399 are being built and prices start at $1.69 million.
Peugeot Coming Back to WEC
The formidable Peugeot 908 and Peugeot’s endurance program ran its last WEC race in 2011. Before Toyota and Porsche rejoined to spar for the LMP1 crown, Peugeot was the only one who would hang with Audi as they dominated Le Mans and other big races. This week, Peugeot surprised us all with a tweet that they were back and ready to join the “Hypercar” class in the WEC in 2022. No other details have been provided but they say we’ll know more at the beginning of 2020. Peugeot joins Aston Martin, Toyota, and Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus as the first few confirmed manufacturers in the new top class in the FIA World Endurance Championship. We’ll take them any way we can. Peugeot belongs in endurance racing. Of course now that they’re merging with Fiat Chrysler, I’m worried that they’ll just quit as soon as they start winning.
Kia Previews New Optima With K5
Following up from an earlier teaser shot, Kia revealed images of the all-new K5 in South Korea which is essentially what the Optima will be in the US. There aren’t many details and any hardware specs would likely be somewhat different for the US anyway, but it’s safe to say the new Optima will at least look close to this. It’s striking to say the very least and looks to have take some inspiration from the Stinger with more athletic lines and a fastback-style roofline. I like it. More info will be available when it goes on sale in South Korea next month. I’ll probably forget about it and won’t cover this again until the Optima is revealed in America.
[Source: Kia via Autoweek]
Ford Names Their Mustang-Inspired Electric Crossover
Ford has been making a lot of buzz about their first all-electric performance vehicle, a crossover that is reportedly heavily inspired by the Mustang. As some spy shots have indicated, it takes a fair bit of usual Mustang styling as its own and will be a properly quick crossover thing. Turns out the looks and relative performance aren’t the only things it’s taking from the Mustang. It’s also taking the name.
Ford is officially calling it the Mustang Mach-E. I guess that means the Mustang is a family that’s open to more than just two-door sports cars now. The Mach-E name though is something I can totally get behind. It’s being revealed to the world this Sunday the 17th at 9:00 PM Eastern on a live broadcast with actor and man who needs to stop getting shitty roles in shitty movies, Idris Elba. I of course do not include his role in Pacific Rim in that statement. Ford will start taking deposits for it immediately after the broadcast at Ford.com.
From the time this article gets posted, you have 56 hours to enjoy a world where a Mustang crossover hasn’t become a thing yet. I’m enjoying my 56 hours by driving my real Mustang to Daytona.
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.