Automobiles

The birth of Aston Martin’s expressive and explosive DBS was an interesting, maybe even high-risk, delivery. Well into the production process of the DBS, Ford Motor Co. began trying to shed those...
The three-wheeled Piaggio MP3 400 ( www.piaggio.com ) might look odd, but you will appreciate its design on a wet or twisty road. The two 12-inch front wheels can tilt 40 degrees, providing a...
The Gift A race-driven F1 Ferrari. — Two VIP passes to all 20 Formula One races during the 2008–2009 season and an all-access pass to the Ferrari paddock and pit area during the 2008 Monaco Grand...
The Gift A rebuilt and fully restored Zagato-bodied supercharged racecar of the type that once dominated European open-road competitions. $1.2 million From the acronym of Anonima Lombarda Fabbrica...
The Gift One of the fewer than 99 coupes that are bound for the United States. — High-speed-driving lessons on the Balocco test track near Turin, Italy. $300,000 Alfa Romeo’s 8C Competizione has been...
Blasting through puddles at 187 mph on the main runway at Alhorn flugplatz in northern Germany, Porsche’s 2008 911 GT2 spits out a rooster tail taller than Miss Budweiser’s. It is a spectacular...
Prepare to remove your hat at the sight of the Ducati Desmosedici RR ( www.ducati.com ) —if you do not want it blown off. This first-ever street-legal MotoGP replica is derived from the Ducati Corse...
Maserati has loosed from its Modena stables the long-awaited GranTurismo, and it is a formidable machine. Ostensibly a replacement for the GranSport, the GranTurismo is actually anything but: It...
Checkered flags fluttered, TV cameras rolled, onlookers waved, and ancient motors revved, as the procession of vehicles, the likes of which rarely are seen in China, majestically rolled away from the...
While competing in its third Grand Prix motor racing season in 1987, Aprilia won its first title, at the Grand Prix of San Marino. Since then, the Italian producer of motorcycles and scooters has won...
The GT-R is to sushi and soy sauce what the Corvette is to apple pie and vanilla ice cream. Originally sold in 1969 under the Datsun brand, the model has long been revered by Japan’s driving...
"This is not just a show car," proclaims Alfred DiMora, founder and CEO of DiMora Motorcar, a boutique automaker in Palm Springs, Calif. "In essence, we are bringing Silicon Valley to Detroit by...
Appearing like a 911 coupe captured through a wide-angle lens, the Panamera is Porsche’s answer to Mercedes-Benz’s highly successful four-door, four-passenger CLS. The Panamera—named after La Carrera...
At various times in the previous century, Rapide —an exotic and evocative word—has denoted a fabric and plywood airliner (in the 1930s), a cycle-fendered roadster (also in the ’30s), and a European...
Victory Motorcycles has introduced an impressive array of big American cruisers over the past decade; the Hammer, Vegas, and Kingpin bikes each displayed a fresh design and distinctive flair. Now, on...
Ferrari’s recently retired Formula One champ Michael Schumacher was back behind the wheel of an F/1 racer, leaving trails of rubber as he slid the car around the corners of a test track. Not far away...
Many consider the 1934 Packard 12 to be the best car that the company ever made. Raymond Dietrich designed the vehicle, giving it a raked back, wide cowl, long hood, and tall radiator. Dietrich began...
The term muscle scooter might sound self-contradictory, but it aptly describes the Aprilia Sportcity 250 ( www­.apriliausa.com ). Aprilia, a unit of the Italian vehicle maker Piaggio, is best known...
In 1923, Walter Owen Bentley, founder of the car company that bears his name, determined that driving enthusiasts wanted a more potent version of the standard 3-liter Bentley. Thus were born the...
Some men build cars that display a reminiscent fender flare here, an evocative shoulder swoop there, and maybe a grille that recalls an earlier decade, because they believe there is a future in...
Nearly a decade has passed since BMW paid £40 million (about $65 million) for the rights to the Rolls-Royce name, a silver hood ornament of a gossamer-clad lady (commonly referred to as Nellie in Her...
The 16,000-square-foot workshop that houses Matt Hotch Designs is an oasis of calm in the rough section of Fullerton, Calif., a working-class city located about 20 miles south of Los Angeles. There...
With the notable exceptions of hearses and London taxicabs, everything on wheels seems to travel better as an open carriage. Even ordinary, invisible coupes become noticeable when their tops are...
The vehicle’s two tons of elegance lope flat and steady at 140 mph on the banked oval at the Toyota Arizona Proving Ground (TAPG), the automaker’s vehicle-testing facility near Phoenix. Count Basie’s...
Steve Saleen is obsessed with speed."Roll into the throttle," the former Bob Bondurant racing school instructor commands me as I navigate a makeshift test track, which consists of the public roads...
The sun is shining, a breeze is blowing, and the top is down as I navigate a dark blue 1960 Mercedes-Benz 300D onto a scenic road overlooking Newport Beach in Southern California. "In postwar Germany...
Don’t be deceived by its color-coordinated saddlebags or upright riding position: The $15,599 Yamaha FJR1300AE ( www.yamaha-motor.com ) is a supersport bike trapped in the sharply styled body of a...
Harley-Davidson’s Screamin’ Eagle Road King embodies a paradoxical combination of rough-hewn attitude and couturelike individualism. Built by hand in limited numbers by the Custom Vehicle Operations...
Big Dog, another company in America’s heartland—Wichita, Kan., in this case—also straddles the fence between pure custom and mass production. Within its dramatic, 9-foot-long profile, the Big Dog K-9...
American IronHorse Slammer Navigating the custom cruiser market can be more of a challenge than riding San Francisco’s Lombard Street on a high-neck chopper. At one end of the spectrum are extreme...

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