Each year, just before summer, the world’s most prolific creations and individuals from the automotive industry flock to the grounds of the Goodwood Estate in East Sussex, England. The Goodwood Festival of Speed has become like a Mekka for car lovers and is guaranteed to provide ample amounts of fuel-induced fun. With new cars being presented, vintage cars on display and paraded around, an off-road course and a hillclimb track with a shoot-out on Sunday, there’s a ton of action spread across the multi-day event. This year we saw a multitude of spectacular machines make a debut, or set records, and we go through some of the coolest in today’s instalment of The Petrolhead Corner.
BMW M3 Touring
With the demise of global car shows like the Geneva Motor Show, the IAA in Frankfurt and others, more and more manufacturers are looking to launch cars elsewhere. And it’s not just small-scale manufacturers like Pagani (we’ll get to that in a bit) but also industry giants like Porsche and BMW who look for fitting stages to launch new cars. Case in point, the new and highly anticipated BMW M3 Touring was presented to the public during the Goodwood Festival of Speed this year.
It’s the first time BMW’s M-division has ever created a production 3-series Touring (an estate version). There has been an estate of the mad E60 M5, the one with the V10, but never the smaller 3-series, BMW’s bread-and-butter car if you will. It’s built upon the existing 3-Series Touring and is aimed directly at the Audi RS4 Avant and Mercedes C43 AMG Estate. Underneath the beefed-up exterior, you can find all sorts of performance-enhancing components, the biggest of which is the 503bhp producing twin-turbo straight-6 engine.
Ford UK SuperVan 4 EV
Returning readers of our Petrolhead Corner might remember the Ford Supervan article we published a while ago. Well, there’s a new chapter to that bonkers series of vans Ford UK made over the years. What started out with a first-gen Ford Transit body draped over the chassis and engine from a Ford GT40, morphed into Group C based Supervan 2 and eventually into the 650bhp Supervan 3. Fast forward to 2022 and the Ford Supervan 4 EV sees the light of day. Presented during Goodwood, YouTube channel CvdZijden published a fitting compilation video:
The Ford Supervan 4 EV uses the latest tech, meaning batteries and electric motors. But don’t be put off by that, as it produces an astonishing 2,000bhp! The result of all this power underneath that bulky exterior? Zero to 100kph in under two seconds, and blistering performance up the hillclimb course thanks to some clever aerodynamic trickery. And the best part? There’s a sliding side door to give access to a loading compartment, just like in a regular van. So it can be considered somewhat practical, right?
Pagani Huayra Codalunga
The third car on the list is a true masterpiece from the minds of Pagani. It is called the Pagani Huayra Codalunga (long tail) and is basically a more streamlined version of the already insane Huayra. Only 5 will be built and all are spoken for, even before the official launch (as often is the case with such special cars). Each one is bespoke to its owner and features a streamlined, reworked body inspired by the long-tail race cars from the 1960s and 1970s. It features in this video from Shmee150, shot at Goodwood Festival of Speed;
The dramatic-looking Huayra Codalunga has a Mercedes-AMG 6.0 litre twin-turbo V12 engine in the back, producing 829bhp. No performance figures are listed, but considering the fact the “standard” Huayra hits 100kph in under 3 seconds and powers on to a top speed of 238mph (383kph), this Codalunga will be a mighty quick car indeed! The price for this glorious piece of Italian design and engineering? An equally eye-watering 7 million euros, before taxes!
Porsche 963 LMDh
I’ve already addressed the transition the world of endurance racing is making over the last two years, and finally, things are starting to take proper shape with regards to the new LMH/LMDh regulations. Porsche announced they would be rejoining the biggest stage of endurance racing a long while ago, and finally, they presented their 2023 contender, the Porsche 963. This is a numerical follow-up to the legendary 962, the all-conquering Group C prototype racing car from the 1980s but is worlds apart when it comes to technology. Makes sense of course, as the last time the 962 raced Le Mans was back in 1994.
The new Porsche 963 LMDh is built in accordance to the new ACO and FIA endurance racing regulations and is eligible for the World Endurance Championship and the IMSA WeatherTech Sportscar Championship (hosting the Daytona 24 Hours). The Porsche 963 LMDh is powered by a 4.6-litre twin-supercharged V8 engine producing 680bhp, based on the one found in the Porsche 918 Spyder road car. It is paired with an electric motor, but no further specifications on that side of the powertrain are released yet. The Porsche 963 LMDh is intended to bring home Porsche’s 20th overall victory at the Le Mans 24 Hours but will face fierce competition from Toyota, Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus, Ferrari, Peugeot and others.
While the entire Goodwood Festival of Speed is dedicated to the world of cars and bikes, special attention goes to the annual hillclimb competition. While most cars parade up the 1.16 mile (or 1.86 kilometres) long course in parade-style, or just show-boating how much rubber they can burn, there is actual competition for the fastest time. The course twists its way up the grounds of the Goodwood House, through hay bale “barriers” and past a flint-rock wall and is pretty much a guaranteed recipe for excitement.
Basically, anything can enter, with practice runs over the entire event leading up to the shoot-out on Sunday. This year’s Top 10 runs (see below) are an eclectic mix of Group C prototype racers, cutting-edge electric race cars, a bonkers 1980s Subaru GL Wagon and more. Enjoy!
Special Mention: McMurtry Spéirling
Despite being featured in the Top 10 fastest run video, I want to highlight the McMurtry Spéirling. This was already featured in last year’s coverage of the Goodwood Festival of Speed, but the pocket-rocket Batmobile has undergone further development over the past 12 months and would be attempting to break the hillclimb record this year. What’s amazing about this machine is its small size, yet mental performance. Over the course of the weekend, the camera crew had trouble keeping up with it as it just launches itself like a bow from an arrow. Blink, and you’ll miss it:
Zero to 100kph is done in 1.5 seconds, and it hit almost 150mph (240kph) at the speed trap. It sticks to the road like glue thanks to two fans sucking out air underneath. The way it launches itself kicks up clouds of dust, and blasts up the hill are otherworldly and show just what modern-day technology is capable of. It completed the 1.16-mile track in a record-breaking 39.08 seconds.
For more information, please visit Goodwood.com