The Nürburgring Nordschleife has the reputation as one of the most difficult tracks in the world to master – deservedly so. With 14 miles of roadway and about 160 corners over a massive amount of elevation change, the amount of grip can change from turn to turn. As the driver of the famous BMW Ring Taxi learned this weekend after a shunt into the barricades, the 'Ring can bite unsuspecting pros just as easily as amateurs.
Head out to the Nürburgring, and you can witness all manner of racing. Most of it remains confined, however, to the GP-Strecke, where you'll find superbikes, DTM touring cars, GT racing cars and even the occasional Formula One race competing in top-level world championships. But not on the infamous Nordschleife – a circuit so dangerous that F1 left it in 1976 and the World Sports Car Championship (precursor to today's World Endurance Championship) packed it up in '83. These days, the
The magic mark at the Nürburgring once stood in the sevens. Anything that could lap the vaunted Nordschleife in less than eight minutes was considered biblically fast. But with all manner of vehicles clocking lap times that start with a seven, the goal post has moved below the seven-minute mark and into the sixes.
You don't have to be German to test your car at the Nürburging. You just have to be serious about beating the Germans on their own home turf. That's why Nissan tests its GT-R at the Nordschleife to challenge the Porsche 911, and why Cadillac – which is no less serious about putting up a fight to German performance sedans – has returned to the 'Ring once again with its latest.
The Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Coupé Electric Drive may be powered by batteries, but it is a legitimate supercar. It has exotic supercar styling, supercar paint, and a 416,500 Euro ($550,600 at today's rates) supercar price tag. Now, it also has a sub-eight-minute supercar lap time around the Nürburgring Nordschleife.
Porsche released a video of its 911 Carrera S lapping the Nürburgring last month, and with a time of 7:37.9, the quintessential sports coupe continues to impress. With Timo Kluck behind the wheel, this Carrera S posted better times around the 'Ring than the 997 911 Turbo and, according to PorscheBoost, it even knocked a full two seconds off the time the Carrera S recorded last year.
Two years after the Exagon Furtive eGT was revealed, the production version of French electric sports car is set to debut at the 2012 edition of the Paris Motor Show. While the newer version may soon steal the spotlight with its upsized set of 148-kW (198.5 horsepower) motors and a slightly larger 57-kWh battery, the original is not going gently into that good night.
The idea of a world without the Nürburgring seems unconscionable. Not only has it provided generations of exciting races, but it has become the measuring stick for performance credibility. While 'Ring times aren't 'official' we still pay close attention to them. Cadillac even uses those unofficial times in its advertising.
It's not a new fastest EV ever record, but Audi has just set a new "series production electric car" speed record with a 8:09.099 minute-time at Nürburgring in the R8 e-tron. We bet you're thinking the same thing we did when we saw the news: wait, so the R8 e-tron is a production vehicle now?
There's any number of cars that can be used for taxis. The Ford Crown Vic, Nissan NV, Toyota Sienna... pretty much anything with a useable back seat, a cargo area and a roof on which to put a dome light. But a BMW M5? Surely that has to be overkill, right?
Democracy, said Winston Churchill, is the worst form of government...except for all the others. You might say the same of the Nürburging. Not the track itself, but the ultimate bragging rights that have emerged from comparing lap times on it. Because while there are countless factors that can affect a car's lap time over such a long circuit, it's still one of the best ways to measure a car's overall performance.
In advance of it assault on the standing electric vehicle record round the 'Ring, Toyota Motorsports GmbH (TMG) has released a photo and a few more details about the vehicle it will use to quickly navigate the 20.832 km (12.94 miles) length of the Nordschleife.
This past weekend, the Formula One circus rolled into Eifel for the German Grand Prix. And though it was campaigned once again at the Nürburgring, the race was held on the GP-Strecke. The infamous Nordschleife hasn't been used for F1 racing since the early 80s, when it was deemed too dangerous for modern open-wheelers. But while they were on site, championship leaders Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber and their sponsor Infiniti didn't miss the opportunity for a little wheel-to-wheel action a