Welcome to our luxury living blog. Here you will find information on exotic cars, luxury car rentals, top 5 and top 10 lists, luxury news, events, stories of unbelievable wealth and much more. You can find out what the most expensive entrees and drinks are, and even read up on some bizarre foods. We scan the globe to discover what the latest luxury news holds, and pass on our plethora of knowledge and tips to our awesome readers and fan base. Hear of something exotic and interesting? Drop us an email and tell us about it! Where money is spent, the world is watching.
This year marks the second year in a row that Rolls-Royce has held the “Summer Studio” celebration at the lavish Porto Cervo in Italy. The brand drummed up further excitement in the area by unveiling a special edition Wraith named for the hotspot: The Rolls-Royce Porto Cervo Wratih.
The Rolls-Royce Summer Studio is a luxury event that showcases the latest offerings from the marquee, giving attendees the opportunity to soak in a bit of history and even get their paws on the steering wheel for a scenic drive along the area coast. Driving a gorgeous Rolls-Royce vehicle along an Italian coastline? It is the stuff fantasies are designed from. The exotic location was not simply chosen by chance, however. It seems that the area is a popular summer vacation destination for many Rolls-Royce owners—indicating that they certainly did their homework to ensure a good turnout for the event.
The Rolls-Royce Wraith is the latest edition to the lineup.
The special edition Rolls-Royce Porto Cervo Wraith met the crowd in striking bright orange metallic coat. Just 3 examples of the Porto Cervo car will be created, with their styling cues derived from Costa Smeralda. Rich orange, Navy blue and an interior cabin befitting a luxury yacht all signal that these members of the fleet are something unique. A brilliant Arctic white was selected for the cabin to draw to mind the feeling of a ship at sea. The powertrain remains unchanged, with the same thirsty 623 horses purring beneath the hood ready to catapult passengers from 0-60 miles per hour in 4.4 seconds.
Fun fact: The Sardinian resort of Porto Cervo boasts a population of just 421 ultra-wealthy individuals.
There are few driving experiences as frustrating as nailing an unseen pothole and ruining a perfectly good rim. Not only are potholes damaging to rims and wheels, they can cause problems with alignment and deeper unseen issues as well. This is why Land Rover pothole alert technology is long overdue and a great preventative measure.
Land Rover seems quite busy in the technology arena these days, focusing on much more than just crafting the world’s most luxurious off-road vehicles. The brand’s pothole alert technology goes further than simply alerting the driver of impending danger—it also alerts the crews tasked with repairing the potholes so that the problem is corrected. The big picture of the alert includes it as but a slice in the road toward autonomous vehicles, a direction that seems unavoidable with brands already testing their wares and making great strides in development.
The pothole detecting technology is currently being tested using the swanky and adorable Range Rover Evoque model. The Evoque is equipped with the ability to pinpoint the location and severity of discrepancies in the roads. It then has the capacity to broadcast that information to other vehicles and crews needed to fix them. Will potholes and broken manhole covers be fixed in a more timely fashion, or will their locations just be noted and maneuvered around due to budget issues as per usual? While the operations of each particular city are not exactly a controllable feature, at least soon drivers will have the technology to avoid more potholes on the roadways and prevent damages to their expensive investments.
There has been some chatter hitting the headlines about a Google autonomous car cutting off an Audi driverless car. While many wild theories circulated, it seems that the scenario was a planned exercise by the companies to see how their wares interacted under real world conditions when cut off, even by another autonomous car. So what would happen if two autonomous vehicles crashed into each other?
While all companies touting their autonomous technology want to highlight the positive points and reiterate that the other points are still being ironed out, it is entirely feasible that these types of vehicles can collide, though it is not quite likely. There are precious few driverless cars on the roads today, because not many have the legal permits required to do so. Google and Delphi Automotive have the jump on competitors, as they are not only already out on the roads testing, but they are interacting with each other for testing strategies to simulate real driving exposures.
During the incident in question, a modified driverless Lexus operated by Google cut off Delphi’s modified autonomous Audi, forcing it to abort changing lanes. It is impressive that the technology seems to be advancing so rapidly, with the autonomous cars able to seemingly “change their mind” mid-maneuver to avoid crashing.
Google is the big player in the game, as usual, with about 20 driverless vehicles on the public roads while Delphi Automotive is more narrowly focused with just 2 cars out testing. So…who would be ‘at fault’ if two driverless cars crashed? Would they replay the video and analyze the driving conditions and moves just prior to the incident? Will the bulk of pesky insurance claim specialists soon be eliminated by technology? Share your opinion on the matter below!
A recent Aston Martin sale at Bonham’s auction shows that the brand is perhaps a touch more valuable to collectors these days. A 1935 Aston Martin Ulster was unloaded for a staggering $4.5 million, marking the first time a pre-war example has reached numbers of that magnitude.
The Aston Martin Ulster was a racing car and this one, LM19, competed in the Ards TT race. These cars were designed with racing in mind, and made their mark at many races in the early to mid 1900s, including the Mille Miglia, Le Mans, RAC TT and the French Grand Prix. The Ulster is special because just 21 cars plus 7 team cars were built and they were incredible. There were minimal differences between a road and racing car during that era, and the Ulster packed a 1.-5-liter 4-cylinder with a single-overhead camshaft that had been used for some time by the brand. Power is flushed to a 4-speed transmission and the rolling chassis is old school aluminum. It has that signature shape that seems to attract gearheads across the globe, and would fit in perfectly among exotic car collections, especially Jay Leno’s.
The rare Aston Martin caused an absolute sensation at Bonham’s auction house, where 3 bidders created an inferno fighting for the right to own the car. The buyer, while anonymous, was a European. The Aston Martin Ulster sold alongside some of the following cars at the sale that day:
James May’s 1984 Porsche 911 3.2-liter Carrera
Former Rolling Stone Bill Wyman’s 1966 Mercedes-Benz 250 S
Also Wyman’s 1971 Citroën Maserati SM
Sir Stirling Moss’s 1961 Porsche RS-61 spyder
Mercedes-Benz CLK GTR roadster
The event was a phenomenal success, and seemingly with new standards being set for Aston Martin collectors.
Automotive personality Shmee150 seems to attend all of the noteworthy events, this time he uploaded the awesome footage below of the new Lamborghini Huracan monster taking on the electric Porsche 918 spyder. Exotic car racing could be the perfect occupation and pass time for auto enthusiast, as it is a chance to see all those figures put to the test on the pavement. Alas, while we all know a talented driver can make a difference, it still boils down to sheer engineering. Check out what happens in the short clip below:
The video below shows footage from both the Lamborghini Huracan and the Porsche 918 during the drag challenge. Shmee150 is riding shotgun in the Huracan and details some of the action in his special commentary style, which is a bit like a PG13 Jeremy Clarkson.
The Porsche 918 hybrid is packing close to 900 horses while the Lamborghini Huracan LP610-4 is housing just 610. That difference did not seem to matter much in the beginning of the challenge, as the Lamborghini Huracan had little trouble gaining the initial advantage. At around 140 miles per hour, however, the Porsche 918 stretched past the Huracan as though it were parked, and continued to leave a brutal gap. The speedometer inside of the Huracan hits around 205+ miles per hour with the Porsche 918 continuing to gain speed in the right lane. The victor is clearly the 918, with the power to not only pass by a worthy opponent, but also to continue to embarrass them long after that pass.
This supercar challenge was all in good fun and humor at the runway of Vmax 200 Stealth, where Shmee150 was on hand to provide up close and personal accounts of some of the more special exotic cars on hand. Shmee150 has an enviable life, filled with travel, fast cars, and fueled with a never-ending array of new release supercars to study!
It seems that popular Porsche is certainly pulling its weight for parent company Volkswagen, bringing in more money than VW offerings. Quick history: Industry giant Volkswagen acquired Porsche back in 2012 following a battle during which both German companies were attempting to purchase the other. Since that time, Porsche sales have continued to flourish.
Fast forward to today and it was a wise decision for VW Group to devour the Porsche brand as it has been an enormous profit. Porsche sales have been incredibly healthy in the past three years, even overshadowing the brand’s flagship VW offerings. While the giant unloaded 25 times more VW models, the Porsche luxury cars brought in more revenue with their dramatically different pricing demands.
The Porsche badge is right on track to make the company even more money this year, according to HIS analyst Tim Urquhart. Urquart stated to the press: “Porsche is well on target to sell more than 200,000 units in 2015 and will no doubt generate a significantly larger operating profit than last year’s figure of $3 billion.” That would bring the overall VW Group profit up from around $2.5 billion from 2014.
The Porsche Macan SUV has driven sales tremendously with its luxurious yet compact body. It was a welcomed departure from the oversized upscale SUV offerings crowding the market and now other leading brands are consumed with creating their own little luxury SUV models to compete. The Porsche Macan is poised to sell 78,000 units over the larger sibling, the Cayenne, which is expected to unload 67,000. These figures paired with past sales indicate plenty of interest in the market for both small and large luxury SUV offerings, and companies are taking notice. VW Group is likely going to hold onto the Porsche brand for the foreseeable future.
The last Porsche owned by legendary Steve McQueen is officially for sale, and it boasts a rather James Bond style feature: a kill switch on the dash to turn off the rear lights. The star added this modification to several of the vehicles in his fleet, and it does not require a genius to understand the purpose.
The 1976 Porsche 930 Turbo will hit the auction block August 13th, 2015 in Monterey, California. It is expected to change hands for over a million USD.
The Steve McQueen Porsche 930 Turbo at a glance:
The actor and avid automotive enthusiast ordered the car new in 1976.
The car kicks forth 234 horses at 5,500 RPM thanks to a healthy 3.0-liter engine. At this early juncture, the engines were not intercooled, making this a fine and rare collector item.
The engine is no. 6860413 with Bosch K-Jetronic fuel injection.
It is chassis no. 9306800408 for those curious to follow the action online.
McQueen ordered the car from Bob Smith Porsche in Hollywood with the following specifications: The car was to feature a sunroof, dual mirrors, limited slip and rear sport seats.
According to Chad McQueen, Steve’s son: “My dad had little things done to it. On the dashboard he had a switch put on so it would kill the rear lights in case he was being chased down Mulholland Drive.” The star drove the Porsche until his unexpected death in 1980 at age 50.
Now the very last of the legend’s special ordered luxury vehicles is set to fetch north of a million dollars. A Ferrari 276 GTB sold for over 4 times its value because Steve McQueen owned it, the same value should hold true in the case of this rare turbo Porsche.
Ford is getting rather cutting edge these days, recently revealing that the new Galaxy and S-Max models will be able to see around corners. A special camera system located in the grille provides a 180-degree view, showing drivers important details such as what is coming up around the corner. This will factor out the stress of wondering what is around blind corners, and also help avoid unexpected objects, people, animals and more.
Are all new vehicle safety features and technologies being embraced? Perhaps not the legal speed limit limiters…but seeing around the corner should be a no-brainer.
Automotive technology continues to evolve, with spectacular gadgets gracing the roadways. While some new gadgets are strictly created because they are cool, many are geared more toward safety. The new Ford technology was engineered in response to the volume of auto accidents occurring at junctions due to restricted views. The camera system provides a 1-megapixel view of what is coming up around the corner, obviously in real time. It shows what is both to the left and to the right on a bright 8-inch touch screen, so the driver is able to avoid collisions. Now the terrifying act of being forced to guess at the safety of yourself and the occupants of your vehicle may be a problem of the past.
The camera is tiny measuring in at just 33 millimeters wide, with a special retractable jet washer keeping it clear. The camera washer is activated when the vehicle’s windshield wipers are, making the process seamless. Ford Galaxy and S-MAX models already offer rear view cameras, cross traffic alerts and other safety features, and now it seems that additional security is just around the corner.
The Rezvani Beast greets you with an aggressive stare when you enter its domain. And by domain I mean website, where it is perched on display to tantalize viewers with all of the pertinent information about how it was created and what it is capable of achieving. The site claims she is the ‘Supercar reinvented’ and according to the specifications and brilliant photos, most would have to agree.
Using an Atom chassis made of carbon fiber and a carbon fiber shell, the vehicle tips the scales at a scant 1650 pounds. This allows her to catapult from 0-60 miles per hour in just 2.7 seconds.
She packs 500 healthy horses in that light little body, which is about 600 pounds lighter than even the Mazda Miata.
The Beast is a Honda Racing Rotrex K24 DOHC supercharged and intercooled 2.4-liter from the Ariel Atom 3 and 3S.
Alcon 4 piston competition brakes bring all that power to a halt.
The transmission is a 6-speed close ratio manual with limited slip delivering power to the rear, the company communicates that the car was developed to cater to all 5 senses. There is an optional sequential manual with paddle shifters.
The windshield is optional, depending on the driver’s feelings toward insects and helmets.
The rear view is striking and a bit like a blend of the Lamborghini Huracan and the Lamborghini Aventador.
The Rezvani Beast was designed by award-winning designer Samir Sadikhov and starts at around $165,000. That is not a dramatically huge sum for such an addictive looking new toy.
The Bugatti Legends Series is a collection of 6 special edition Grand Sport Veyron Vitesse cars. Each car pays homage to a special person from Bugatti’s history, and just 3 examples of each of the 6 cars exist. One of them, the Meo Costantini car, is already for sale.
Meo Costantini was born in 1889 and embodied the face of the most successful era in Bugatti’s rich racing history. According to Wolfgang Schreiber, President of Bugatti Automobile S.A.S. “Ettore Bugatti’s vehicles from the 1920s stand for lightweight construction and technical aesthetics. When Bugatti created the Type 35, he inspired one of the most successful racing cars of all time. The Vitesse ‘Meo Costantini” is reminiscent of the Type 35.”
The Meo car was the 3rd model released in the 6 car series. It is being advertised with an asking price of $2.7 million, but the price is not the surprising factor—it seems odd that it is being publicly sold rather than invite-only or private. It is a part of perhaps the most special collection of Bugatti cars, after all. The car has been driven approximately 4800 km and does not seem to have made many public appearances with its bright blue and chrome form. Under the shiny shell, the Meo car is mechanically identical to the standard Bugatti Veyron Vitesse convertible, packing an aggressive quad-turbo 8.0-liter W16 engine delivering 1,200 horses. While the Vitesse can nail the 0-60 mile per hour sprint in 2.6 seconds, the sale seems to be taking a touch longer. Which of the 6 Bugatti Legends Series cars was your favorite?