When TRANSLOGIC launched in April of 2010, episode 100 seemed far off in the distance. But after 2 years of bringing you the latest in transportation technology, we've finally reached triple digits.
We wanted our 100th episode to feel like a celebration, so in the tradition of Superbowl champions, we decided to head to Disney World. But, we weren't there to hang with Mickey and friends. We felt it would be more fitting to report on some of the most exotic and technologically advanced cars in the world. Based In Orlando, Fla., Walt Disney World Speedway's Exotic Driving Experience allows customers the opportunity to drive (or be driven in) a Porsche 911, Ferrari 458 Italia, Audi R8 or Lamborghini Gallardo. For those looking to get behind the wheel of one of these rare and expensive automobiles, prices start at $169 and range up to $419 for six laps with a pro driving instructor in the passenger seat.
Starting at the bottom--if such a thing could be said--is the Porsche 911 Carrera S. The 997 generation is the most recent generation of 911 before the newest 991. There are still 997 variants offered today, but they are the lower-selling, higher-performance variants like the Turbo and Turbo S. The 997 has been Porsche's most successful 911 ever with sales reaching 100,000 units in the six model-years that it has been around. Power comes from a naturally aspirated 3.8-liter flat six engine producing 355 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque.
While the 911 is perhaps the most enduring sports car on the planet, we decided to shift our focus to a more exotic offering.
Next there is the famously sinister looking Audi R8. The R8 is the first supercar to come from Audi and it has been well received for its relative drivability in a class marked by unruly power. The R8 is also celebrated for its sharp design, which features a set of intimidating LED headlamps (an Audi signature). A 5.2-liter V-10 pulled from Lamborghini (which Audi owns) is responsible for blasting the R8 to 60 mph is only 3.8 seconds. One major reason it can get to speed so quickly is the R8's all-wheel Quattro system that puts its massive 525 hp down with ease.
The R8 is an amazing automobile, but since we've already featured it on episode 25, we kept moving down the line.
Next up the ladder is a car very similar to the Audi. The Lamborghini Gallardo LP560-4 shares an engine with the R8, but is tuned slightly differently. Also, the Audi doesn't get the Lamborghini's signature exhaust note that is sure to turn heads. 560 hp and 376 lb-ft of torque help blast the Gallardo to 60 mph in only 3.7 seconds (again AWD helps here). The Gallardo nameplate has been the most produced Lamborghini ever with over 10,000 units sold since 2003.
The LP570-4 Superleggera variant ups the ante by replacing many parts with light-weight materials like forged aluminum, polycarbonates and, of course, carbon fiber. By shaving off the pounds, the Superleggera achieves a mind blowing power-to-weight ratio of 5.18 lbs./hp and makes it from 0 to 60 mph in 3.4 seconds.
Since we'd never featured a Lambo on TRANSLOGIC before and were impressed with the use of high-tech materials, the Superleggera became the focus of our 100th episode.
Arguably at the top of the heap was the Ferrari 458 Italia. Regarded by some as the best Ferrari ever, the 458 is the successor to the F430, but came with more enhancements from Ferrari's Formula 1 team. A 4.5-liter V8 produces 562 hp and 398 lb-ft of torque and redlines at a screaming 9,000 rpm. 0-60 is only 3.4 seconds.
Although the Superleggera stole our focus for the day, we were sure to experience a few laps in the Italia as well.