Goodwood Festival of Speed 2014

What's worth seeing at the 2014 Goodwood Festival of Speed?

By Tim Kendall | 26th June 2014

It’s that time of year again. The few days in sunny June when the Earl of March opens his sprawling country pile for a motoring themed garden party. DrivingTalk will be back at the Goodwood Festival of Speed again this year, so keep your eyes peeled for some exciting Goodwood-related tweetage.

There’s always a theme and this year it’s a catchy one: ‘Addicted to winning – the unbeatable champions of motorsport’. So expect lots of manufacturers to be trumpeting their recent and not-so-recent motorsport successes.

 1. Peugeot 208 T16 Pikes Peak

Peugeot 208 T16 Pikes Peak

Sebastian Loeb will pilot Peugeot’s mental 208 T16 Pikes Peak car

That’s a spoiler right there. Peugeot is bringing along its 208 T16 Pikes Peak car and has drafted in 9-times World Rally Champion Sebastian Loeb to try and smash the Goodwood Hillclimb record. The time to beat, set by Nick Heidfeld’s McLaren MP4-13 in 1999 is 41.6 seconds. Let’s see if Loeb can beat it without smashing into Lord March’s foliage or one of the less forgiving flint walls which line the narrow, technical track. The combination of 875bhp and 875kg – a power-to-weight ratio of 1:1 – should give him a fighting chance.

 2. Jaguar F-Type Project 7

If you’re kind of a Big Deal and wear monogrammed dressing gowns, you’ll want something few others have got. The kind of thing JLR’s new Special Ops division can build. Jaguar’s under-the-counter division are displaying the fruits of their labours at Goodwood FoS this year: the F-Type Project 7 is a carbon festooned, lightweight, chopped-down, spoilered-up drool-fest to behold. Particularly in D-Type aping green. A man called Harry Metcalfe, with a life so charmed he tired of running evo and now works as a consultant to JLR Special Ops, has also ordered one. Even more important than that nugget, is the fact it’s the first Jag road car to dip under the 4.0 seconds to 62 mph mark. With 575bhp and 80kg shaved off the standard V8S kerb weight it does the magic dash in 3.9 ticks.

3. Lexus RC F

The Lexus RC F

The Lexus RC F

Might the frankly brilliant-looking RC F banish any lingering Alan Partridge associations for good? Not sure, people have long memories – although Alan does drive a Kia Optima now. But back to the subject at hand – Lexus will have the 5.0-litre V8 coupe on its stand and on track for ‘first glance’ outings during the weekend. Said to be highly rigid thanks to advanced manufacturing techniques including ‘multi-screw welding’ (calm down at the back please) it launches later this year. Nikons at the ready…

4. Honda NSX Prototype

Honda NSX Concept appears 21 years after the original NSX made it up the Hillclimb

Honda NSX Concept appears 21 years after the original NSX made it up the Hillclimb

Rather fitting that, just over two decades on from the original Honda NSX’s debut at the Goodwood Festival Speed and 20 years on from Ayrton Senna’s untimely passing, a new NSX will make its way up the Hillclimb this year. But it’s a rather different kettle of fish from the original and iconic 3.0-litre V6 which Ayrton helped hone. The NSX Prototype features a three-motor hybrid powertrain which consists of a twin-turbo V6 engine mated to Honda’s ‘Sport Hybrid SH-AWD’ system. Bit of a mouthful? Yes but in layman’s terms it works like this: one electric motor mated to the V6 which powers the rear wheels via a dual-clutch transmission and two electric motors driving the front wheels. Looks a bit good doesn’t it?

By Tim Kendall
26th June 2014

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