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Drive Cult : Blogs

Drive Cult is not your average car fansite. We aim to be something different, a breath of fresh air in amongst the crowded world of automotive blogs on the internet.

We want to share our passion and enthusiasm for all things automotive; to give a real-life view of the ups and downs of motoring; to give coverage to, and share, experiences and subjects not usually covered in the mainstream press.

Most of all, we aim to be original, to be unusual, to find an alternative angle, to be different and engaging.

Silverstone Classic 2012
Author : Matthew Lange

The Silverstone Classic is one of the world's largest classic car meets. It not's just the racing that brings visitors in, but also the large displays of classic metal arranged by numerous car clubs. Here is a selection of some of the cars on display, including a few shots of the huge gathering of Ferrari F40s, to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the iconic model's launch. (Read More)

Saywell Charity Track Day at Goodwood
Author : James Wolfcale

This past weekend the Goodwood Motor Circuit hosted the Saywell Charity Track Day. If you're not already familiar with him, Peter Saywell is the head of an aircraft engine parts supplier and is also quite the car enthusiast. A few times a year Saywell will rent out the track at Goodwood and anyone willing to pony up the participation fee, which goes to charity, is free to do a few laps. All manner of exotic cars show up for the event including a Koenigsegg Agera and Pagani Zonda PS from Saywell's personal collection, the latter of which is a one of a kind commissioned by Saywell himself. Our friend Kevin Peters was on site to capture all the action. For more from this and other events, check out Peter's site at (Read More)

Car : BMW M Series
Author : Chris Ratcliff

The original M cars were motorsport-derived cars for homologation purposes, and therefore contained some measure of racing car DNA in order to maximise their competition potential. With the abolition of such practices, there are no such cars any more. The Merc SLS that thunders round the Nürburgring 24H is not derived from some limited production AMG special, but this doesn't detract from the AMG-ness of the gullwing'd fury wagon. With the homologation requirement removed, these special cars can use parts from other models and become better production cars for more people. The stories of the extremely limited edition Subaru Impreza 22B not fitting standard production paint booths in the Fuji Heavy Industries plant are fun to recount, but such inconveniences are not generally feasible for a production model.

The current M3 can be an acceptable car for more people and therefore BMW will sell more, without compromising on interior trim, sound deadening, or having to fit noisy race parts. However, when the marketing department want to create a halo model and they simply slap an M badge on a car that isn't the work of M Division, then it becomes a marketing exercise. There have been some worrysome signs from Bavaria in this respect, be it the X6M, the M3 Performance packs that don't actually offer any more performance, or the Lime Rock model in the US which is in a similar vein of  'a bit more show, no more go'. Does this mean the death of the brand?

Not while M engineers are still involved in fettling and building these cars. Enthusiasts may duck and dive between the badge-job SUVs to get to the traditional M cars like the 1M, but it's certainly not doing the M brand any favours. Audi have the S line to lift above the standard A models, then the RS cars are a level above that, but BMW may now have to follow Jaguar's lead. Jaguar once said that some buyers purchase the halo models just to go one better than the neighbours, which meant that when Jag wanted to produce a hotter XK-R they had to swap round the punctuation and add more letters to come up with the XKR-S. Following the same logic, in the future could the M badge be found on the 'normal' range-topping road cars, and then something like an M GTS denotes the performance model?

It'd be a shame if that were the case. For as long as I've been aware of M cars, they've always been special. Bespoke parts, extravagent bodywork and a focus on the driving experience. BMW can still hold up the M Division as a performance marque in their own right or they can use it to denote their halo model in each range, but I don't think they can do both. (Read More)

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Sources : Drive Cult Photo | Drive Cult About | Silverstone Classic 2012 Photo | Silverstone Classic 2012 Article | Saywell Charity Track Day at Goodwood Photo | Saywell Charity Track Day at Goodwood Article | BMW M Series Photo | BMW M Series Article


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