VINTAGE CASTLES AND CARS THEN & NOW
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As the saying goes a man's home is his castle but in this case, it really is true.
A spellbinding collection of real-life castle homes from nine states across the U.S. have been uncovered with each fairy-tale pad currently listed for sale.
Ranging in price from $38.5million in Hillsborough, California to $787,000 in Lewisville, Texas, these 19 homes feature everything from multiple swimming pools, wine cellars, elevators and movie theatres.
Among the most boastful in luxury seen, The House of Josephine - gifted from a husband to his wife in 1920 - features 10 bedrooms, 6.5 bathrooms and 18 acres of green in sunny Lake Wales, Florida.
For those especially desiring the fortified, castle-like feel, a white stoned home in Oak Brook, Illinois offers 18-inch thick walls, a full-size elevator and 12 skylights.
Aside from the price, the gorgeous collection appears to offer something for everyone.
For sale: This six bedroom home featuring 12 bathrooms, two pools and two exercise courts in Hillsborough, California is currently on the market for $38,500,000
The updated version: This modernized three-bedroom castle in Los Angeles is currently listed for $19,950,000
Fit for a king: This yellow and white five-bedroom home in St Helena, California is currently listed for $18,950,000 while featuring a swimming pool in its front
White palace: Also seen in St Helena is this four-bedroom on the market for $16,996,000 while featuring an elevator and two-story library
All yours: This five-bedroom home complete with a gym, wine cellar, swimming pool, sauna and spa also has a gated private driveway while listed for $7,000,000 in Los Altos Hills, California
Hideaway: This newly renovated 1912 three-bedroom home in Portola Valley, California featuring a pool, guest house and bocce court, is currently listed for $6,495,000
Chicagoland: This five-bedroom palace featuring 18-inch thick walls, an elevator and 12 skylights is located just outside Chicago in Oak Brook, Illinois, while listed for $4,499,000
Wooded: This five-bedroom 2001-built home in Armonk, New York is listed for $3,999,999
Garden palace: This six-bedroom home in Flourtown, Pennsylvania featuring angled ceilings and winding staircases is listed for $1,895,000
Real-life palace: This beautiful 1885 castle tucked away in Wayne, Illinois features five wood-burning fireplaces and a five-story spire while all together listed for $1,800,000
Spanish estate: This 1920 10-bedroom home called the House of Josephine features 18 acres of green in lake Wales, Florida while listed for $1,599,000
Family home: This five-bedroom home in Lewisville, Texas comes complete with a rock waterfall and slide into a backyard swimming pool, while listed for $1,599,000
The works: This four-bedroom home on 90 acres of land features its own lake, a 14-stall stable for horseback riding as well as a fenced in pasture while listed for $1,593,000 in Elon, North Carolina
Simple life: This four-bedroom home in Santa Rosa, California also features enough space for its own equestrian center while listed for $1,399,000
Emerald palace: This four-bedroom in Lincoln, Massachusetts features a study and a library as well as an extra apartment for a live-in nanny while listed for $1,295,000
American arches: Accompanying each of the four bedrooms are four private bathrooms in this castle situated in Marengo, Illinois while listed for $1,190,000
Golden arches: This two-bedroom home along St Augustine, Florida's shore is listed for $998,000 while equipped with a wine cellar and two-car garage
Fortress: This three-bedroom home in Lincoln, Rhode Island boasts beautiful arched doorways and two cobblestone fireplaces while listed for $849,000
Tiny castle: This five-bedroom in Lewisville, Texas may look small but packs a punch with an additional theatre room and game room while listed for $787,000
According to the Daily Telegraph, all of the properties are currently being advertised by British estate agents and range from a historic Scottish fortress that once belonged to the earls of Fife to a magnificent hilltop palazzo in Italy.
But you'll need deep pockets to afford one, as even the cheapest of the palatial homes will set you back more than £1 million.
Historic: Parts of the magnificent Castello di Collalto just outside Rome date from the 10th century but if you want to move in, you'll have to cough up more than £7m
Spacious: The nine-bedroom castle sleeps up to 19 people and also boasts seven bathrooms and a separate two-bedroom cottage for staff
Spectacular: The 14th century Thurland Castle has been converted into a number of luxury apartments. The three bedroom Cromwell Wing is yours for £1.1m
Renovated: The two main rooms in the Cromwell Wing are of vast mediaeval proportions and have retained their original fireplaces and cornice fittings
Each of the castle dates from a different period, although Westenhanger Castle, near Hythe in Kent, arguably has the most fascinating past.
The castle, a scheduled ancient monument, began life in 1035 during a period of Danish rule under King Canute. Following the Norman Conquest, Westenhanger was passed to a succession of knightly families, including the de Aubervilles, the de Kiriols, the Fogges and the Poynings.
Permission to crenellate was given by Edward III in 1343 and a curtain wall built to connect with the earlier round tower. By the 1540s, the castle was crumbling and it was completely remodelled by its Elizabethan owner, Thomas Smythe, in 1581.
Impressive though Westenhanger is, it isn't the only castle with a history to be proud of on sale. Thurland Castle in Lancashire, although split into several apartments, still retains its moat and was owned by Sir Bryan Tunstall, a heroic soldier immortalised in a poem by Sir William Raleigh.
He was a hero of the Battle of Flodden in 1513, and was dubbed the 'Stainless Knight' by King Henry VII. He was followed by his son Marmaduke, who became High Sheriff of Lancashire.
Magnificent: The 16th Century Lickleyhead Castle in Auchleven near Aberdeen was built in 1560 by William Leith and boasts seven bedrooms and seven bathrooms
Imposing: The drawing room at Lickleyhead Castle, which despite it's vast size, is the cheapest of the castles and costs just £1.3m for the entire property
Cosy: Despite it's impressive size, Lickleyhead Castle is cosily furnished with traditional dark wood in the library (left) and romantic four poster beds (right)
Striking: The cream stone Myres Castle near St Andrews comes with two additional properties and has 10 bedrooms, a library, a Victorian kitchen and a billiards room
Comfortable: Myres Castle was begun in 1454 and was the ancestral home of the earls of Fife. It's now on the market at £2.5m
Later, Thurland was sold to Sir John Girlington, who fought on the Royalist side during the English Civil War. During a 1643 siege, the castle was badly damaged by Parliamentarian forces and was left in a 'ruinous' condition before being restored in the 18th century.
But not all of the homes are in England. Scotland too has a wealth of impressive properties including the pretty 18th century Bonaly Tower, which was the venue for frequent meetings of the 'Friday Club', a group of leading Edinburgh literati, hosted by owner Lord Cockburn.
Others include Myres Castle near St Andrews, the former seat of the earls of Fife, and the imposing Lickleyhead Castle near Aberdeen, which was built by William Leith in 1560.
Outside of the UK, there's a magnificent Italian palazzo dating from the 10th century. But the Castello di Collato near Rome doesn't come cheap. Of all the properties, it is the most expensive and you'll have to hand over £7 million before you get to move in and become king of the castle.
Heritage: Castle Gogar is just six miles from the centre of Edinburgh and was built in Scots Baronial style. It has seven bedrooms and is on the market for £2.9m
Eclectic: Castle Gogar has its own battlements, towers and turrets within, while outside, the property boasts a menage and a stable block with room for three horses
Ancient: Westenhanger Castle in Kent dates from 1035 and the reign of King Canute but was modernised during the reign of Elizabeth II. It is on the market for £2.6m
Elizabethan: Most of the interior owes its shape and size to the first Elizabethan Age and includes period diamond-paned windows and inglenook fireplaces
Famous: The 18th century Bonaly Tower was the venue for frequent meetings of the 'Friday Club', a group of leading Edinburgh literati, hosted by owner Lord Cockburn
Sumptuous: A three-bedroom apartment within Bonaly Tower is on the market at £795,000 and includes a separate study and a slice of the extensive grounds
Then and now: COUNTRY ESTATES
Sprawling £7m estate thought to be last resting place of Robin Hood up for sale for first time in 450 years
He is amongst the ultimate figures of folklore, and Robin Hood is well known for having robbed from the rich to give generously to the poor.
But only the very wealthiest will be able to afford the sprawling estate where the legendary outlaw is thought to have been buried.
Kirklees Estate, on the border of the West Yorkshire village of Hartshead, has been valued by London-based agents Strutt and Parker for £7m.
Kirklees Estate in West Yorkshire, where the remains of fabled outlaw Robin Hood are thought to be buried, is up for sale for the first time in centuries
The huge asking price for the estate - which has gone on sale for the first time in 450 years - entitles the buyer to 750 acres of land, as well as the main house itself.
The sale also includes an annexe, two farmhouses and accompanying buildings, as well as a farm manager’s house and expansive woodland and gardens.
Formerly a Roman encampment called Kirkless Priory, the site is also, according to folklore, the final resting place of the scourge of the Sheriff of Nottingham himself, who it is believed died there and is buried in a tomb on the site.
As well as the famous burial site, the Kirklees Estate also spans 750 acres of land
The estate, owned by the Armytage family since the 16th century, is on the market for the first time in centuries
Unsurprisingly for a figure whose life has inspired countless re-tellings and myths, the manner of his death is also shrouded in mystery.
Legend has it that Robin Hood, weakened by old age and illness and confined to his bed Hood, managed to pick up his bow and fire an arrow out of the window requesting to be buried where it landed.
To the northwest of his grave and also on the historical site, a Grade II listed monument displays the site of the original Norman encampment.
Scourge of the Sheriff of Nottingham, Robin Hood, is believed to be buried on the huge site
The Priory was constructed in 1135 by Lord of the Manor, Reyner le Flemyng, and remained occupied until Henry VIII the dissolution of the monasteries in the 16th century.
Estate agent Claire Whitfield, of Strutt and Parker, said: 'It is a unique opportunity to bring a property like this in both its scale and location.
'The estate represents a unique opportunity to create a very special country estate and despite being on the market for just a few days there has been lots of interest.'
Birthplace of former prime minister Sir Anthony Eden
The 25-acre grounds contain stables and staff quarters. Boasts 19th-century clocktower, billiard room, library and original fireplaces
It was used as a POW camp during World War II
Set in 25 acres of lush parkland and boasting a clocktower, stables and servants' quarters, this stately home was birthplace of former Prime Minister Sir Anthony Eden in 1897.
So it was no surprise when the 19th-century Windlestone Hall was valued at almost £2million shortly after Durham County Council put it on the market six years ago.
Now, however, with the Grade II* listed magnificent country pile falling into disrespair, it has been sold off at a bargain £241,000.
Piece of history: Windlestone Hall is thought to have been valued at nearly £2million just a few years ago
Sign of distinction: The 19th-century clocktower would have been in place when former Prime Minister Anthony Eden was born here
Deserted for years: The house has not been used since 2003, when a local authority school moved out because it needed major repairs
Elegant decor: One of several ornate ceilings within the beautiful building
In 2010, English Heritage refused the proposals by a developer who wanted to build luxury homes on the site
Is property in France and Spain really that 'cheap' after the euro's dive?
Interest in European property on UK search portals is rocketing.
But is it really a good time to buy in the eurozone following the euro's sell-off?
Property is certainly cheaper for those buying in pounds - a €100,000 Normandy cottage now costs around £80,000 compared to £92,000 last summer.
Living the dream: This luxury pad in Costa de La Luz was sold to rugby international Matt Dawson for £1.13m at the top of the market in 2007. It's likely to be worth a fraction of that today
Some claim to offer repossessed flats in Spain at a huge discount with ‘100 per cent mortgages’.
We advise extreme caution about such claims and about diving in full stop.
Spain’s uncertain economic future is one reason to be cautious, but there’s many more, as Dan Hyde and Lauren Thompson explain here.
House prices in Spain and France remain dangerously over-priced, based on their historical average versus rents.
This is a good measure to start with.
It gauges fair value for properties in the same way that a price-to-earnings ratio does for a share on the stock market. In short, you divide the price by the annual earnings of a property then compare this against the average for the past 20 years.
Taking the plunge: A fully furnished three-bedroom villa Mazarrón on the Costa Blanca was up for £191,115 last year - but prices are falling fast
It gives an indication of how far out of kilter the market is today versus its historic norm.
Helpfully, The Economist magazine evaluates all major property markets every three months based on this measure and it combines it with another credible gauge - house prices vs wages.
Its latest study in April concluded that house prices in Spain, which were down nearly 7 per cent on a year earlier, were 27 per cent overvalued.
It was far worse for France. The Economist estimated that a 4 per cent annual rise in prices there had left the market a whopping 47 per cent overvalued.
Britain, in contrast, was judged to be 22 per cent too expensive.
Cheap markets include the U.S. and Germany, both are 19 per cent undervalued, and Japan, which is a bargain 35 per cent below fair value.
The rents measure is not perfect, or the prices vs wages measure, but they are probably the best we have for valuing property markets.
'FRENCH PROPERTY TO RISE - AND THEN FALL UP TO 20%'
Analysis by Danske bank last month painted a gloomy picture for French house prices.
Analyst Frank Olnad Hansen wrote in a broker note: 'We see signs of a bubble in the French housing market and would not be surprised to see French house prices declining 10-20 per cent in coming years.'
Danke said French house prices saw only a minor fall during the financial crisis, rose in 2009 and reached all-time highs in the autumn of 2011 - up 121 per cent since 2000.
It says prices were flat towards the end of last year in Paris and fell slightly in the rest of France, in cities with a population of more than 10,000.
Hansen added: 'The big question is whether this is the beginning of a larger correction in the French housing market. There are several indications that it might be.'
He pointed to signs of a slowdown - fewer mortgages being taken and permits to build new homes - and lenders making provisions for bad debts. He's also concerned about a tightening of the credit purse strings.
'There is little doubt in our minds that the French housing market at the current juncture is vulnerable to a sharp rise in interest rates,' he wrote, although with the current financial woes, the European Central Bank is unlikely to order a hike in the foreseeable future.
Hansen does not believe that the ECB will raise interest rates before 2014 and thinks that French house prices might be able 'to rise strongly on an unsustainable path' for a couple of years making the eventual 'pop' much larger.
Some prefer to latch on to the 'affordability' of property markets (prices vs mortgage repayments) - although it's quite often vested interests keen to talk up the market who do so. Because interest rates are so low, mortgage repayments are low, making markets look cheap.
Other concerns are that the euro, at best, faces more volatility and, at worst, could break up.
Britain's financial future is uncertain but the fortunes of France could be considerably worse if the euro implodes. Spain's economy is already in tatters with unemployment at 25 per cent. And as for Greece, exit from the euro would see property investments crash overnight in sterling terms.
As the Mail on Sunday pointed out this week: 'No one knows how much chaos would result from an exit, if it happened – but the prospect has caused the price of properties in Greece and elsewhere to fall [read the full report].'
Buying Greek property is a huge gamble on the country's future. The odds are slightly better with Spain, but it's still a big roll of the dice.
You should also consider that even if a property market does reach its historic 'fair value', prices could still fall further.
Consider America, which on The Economist's measure, has swung from being wildly overpriced to being 19 per cent too cheap.
But Robert Shiller, the man behind the country's S&P-Case Shiller house price index and a highly regarded economist, says the market has further to fall because of the over-supply of homes: too many were built and remain empty.
Shiller told Bloomberg TV earlier today: 'I'm looking for another 20 per cent decline and that is what it would take to bring them back to the long-term averages.'
It should be noted that Spain has a similar problem with a huge over-supply of houses - and the vast majority of its construction boom was centred on the Costas.
The Economist concludes: 'European house prices came under downward pressure [late in 2011]. The pace of depreciation quickened around the periphery of the eurozone. Appreciation slowed in Germany and France. The euro area’s downturn probably continued into the first quarter of 2012 and may persist beyond that. Unemployment is rising across the continent and banks are under pressure to shore up balance-sheets.
'Prices will struggle to rise in such conditions, in over- and undervalued markets alike.'
C'est la vie: The future price for homes like this four-bedroom villa for sale in Avignon, France, for ¿895,000 is uncertain
How European property markets have fared
Despite the crisis engulfing the eurozone, house prices in France have done surprisingly well, rising more than 7 per cent in 2010 and at only a slightly slower pace last year.
Real prices, with inflation factored in, are down 27 per cent since the peak in Spain but down just 7.6 per cent in France. The fall was more than 30 per cent in the UK.
In like-for-like terms, France's homes seem far cheaper than comparatives. A four-bedroom house in Somerset will cost more than double the cost of an equivalent in Normandy, for example. This is largely because France is a sparsely populated country with 295 people per square mile compared with Britain (660 /sq mile) or Germany (593 /sq mile).
So density has a bearing on house prices. But as events have shown in recent years, the state of the economy - and the amount of lending from banks - has the most dynamic impact.
The chart below, from a report by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, shows the markets falling fastest have been Ireland and Spain.
Both countries built far too many homes, encouraged by profligate lending from banks: read our full report.
RICS European house prices league table: The countries with the weakest economies have suffered huge dips
A lavish Californian mansion is up for sale for $100million (£60million) - but the price tag appears to be a bit too hefty, because there are still no takers a year after it was first advertised.
Surrounded by 47 secluded acres of grounds, the property includes 10 bathrooms, a grand-scale ballroom and a fully-stocked library, with the interiors designed by the acclaimed Anthony Hail.
He used to live in the house with his wife, Vaughn, who he divorced in 2002. According to court documents it was staffed by two housekeepers, three gardeners, a laundress, chef, childcare provider and a part-time chauffeur - and cost $450,000 a year to run.
He said: ‘It's on the market for the first time in nearly 100 years, and this eye-catching property gives commanding views of the bay like no other.
House about that: The opulent mansion is on the market for the first time in 100 years
Size matters: The new owners will have plenty of space to relax and entertain guests
Luxury: The house is adorned with fine furniture and fittings
Splash the cash: You'll need to be swimming in money to afford the property
Handy: The swimming pool is just yards from the main house
Grand: The property is fit for royalty
Stately: A fine chandelier adorns this regal room
This satellite image shows the incredible extent of the mansion's grounds
Flower power: Neighbours must be green with envy at the mansion's garden
Expansive: The nearest neighbours are quite a distance away
Way to mow: The new owners might need a little help to keep the grounds in good order
Soothing: The new owners will be able to stroll amongst rows of flowerbeds
Leafy: The grounds feature plenty of trees and greenery
The property has been put up for sale by Christian de Guigne IV, whose grandparents built the house
Stairway to heaven: Every part of the mansion oozes luxury
A £1m street (lighthouse not included): Five cottages in Britain's most isolated street.... and some of our best sea views are thrown in for free
Yours for less than £1million, an entire row of cottages ... with one very large street light.
Perched on the top of a cliff, the five properties boast south-facing gardens and sea views.
But there is one snag – you will probably need extra-thick curtains because there’s a fully-operational lighthouse and helipad on your doorstep.
Awesome view: Four of the five cottages date back to 1938 with the last built around 1970
Clifftop: The five properties can be seen, right, next to a helicopter launch pad and a lighthouse which is now unoccupied
The cottages situated on St Ann’s Head on the south west tip of Pembrokeshire in Wales used to be used as accommodation for lighthouse keepers.
But they have been empty for over a decade since the lighthouse became automated.
Consisting of four three-bedroom houses and one with two bedrooms, the whole row is on the market for £950,000. They are currently owned by Trinity House Corporation, which maintains all of the functioning lighthouses in England and Wales.
Amy Thomas, of Cardiff-based chartered surveyors Cooke and Arkwright, said: ‘This is a fantastic opportunity to purchase a property in a unique and idyllic coastal location.
‘They offer a perfect opportunity for someone looking for a renovation project.’
It would be the perfect hideaway for anyone who has sung along to the song: 'I want to marry a lighthouse keeper...'
The terrace of cottages has been lying empty for a decade and they are being sold by Trinity House who run all the lighthouses in England and Wales. They have been given a list price of £950,000.
The two lighthouses on the section of coastline have been electrified since 1998.
Estate agent Amy Thomas said: 'It is a fantastic opportunity to purchase a property in a unique and idyllic coastal location.
'The cottages were previously used to house the lighthouse keepers and their families, looking after various lights along the Pembrokeshire coastline.
Lighthouse keeper's properties with a sea view: The five clifftop properties at St Ann's Head in Pembrokeshire, three miles from the nearest town. The lighthouse is not for sale
'The cottages have been vacant for approximately 10 years - and are in need refurbishment.
'However, they offer a perfect opportunity for someone looking for a renovation project.'
The idyllic cottages are part of a complex of properties at the remote spot.
Also on the site but not for sale are two lighthouses, a helipad, a helicopter transit lounge and a former fog horn house.
The money from the sale will go to the Trinity House Corporation which has maintained lighthouses and safety for mariners since they were granted a Royal Charter in 1514.
Four of the five cottages date back to 1938 with the last built around 1970.
A lighthouse has been on the site since 1712 to warn seafarers of the dangerous jagged rocks jutting in the Irish Sea.
Miss Thomas, of Cardiff-based agents Cooke and Arkwright, said: 'Two lighthouses were were fuelled by coal fires.
Amazing sea view: The row of cottages which are also available for sale individually. They are all in a poor state of repair
Stunning: The five properties, available for less than £1m together, have some of the best coastal views in Britain but all require modernisation as they have been empty for a decade
'The existing lighthouse tower was constructed in 1844. The lighthouse was electrified in 1958 and automated in 1998.'
The lighthouse will carry on blinking away on the headland as a warning to shipping lighting up the night sky outside.
The nearest village of Dale is three miles away - but the real beauty is the panoramic views of the islands of Skomer and Skokholm with puffins, manx shearwaters and guillemots.
Four of the five homes have three bedrooms while the last one has two bedrooms. Each boasts nine-inch thick walls to withstand the battering of the sea and winds.
But Miss Thomas warned: 'The cottages have been vacant for some time and require total refurbishment. But it could be a bargain for the right person.'
Remote hideaway: The five terraced homes at St Anne's Head, are at one of the most westerly points in Wales
Run down: The properties were occupied by lighthouse keepers but the lighthouses were electrified in 1998 so they are no longer needed
Green: The cottages have stunning views and there is a helicopter pad nearby. It is thought that a developer may purchase them to renovate
Spectacular: The row of five terraced properties virtually stand alone on the remote, but beautiful, stretch of coastline
Coastal paradise: Four of the five homes have three bedrooms while the last one has two bedrooms. Each boasts nine-inch thick walls to withstand the battering of the sea and
Looks perfect, but is that tenth bedroom a little on the small side? Super wealthy prospective house buyers are being provided with a novel try-before-you-buy scheme to entice them to part with vast sums of money for a deluxe new home. Property company Clarenco has made the unusual offer after deciding to sell six properties in its portfolio, including stately homes and a castle.
With it's unusual frontage and thatched roof eight bedroom Happisburgh Manor in Norfolk looks like an idyllic country home. It also comes with a heated pool and is on the market for £800,000
White meets beige in a bedroom at Happisburgh Manor in Norfolk and the wide windows ensure plenty of light gets in
Wooden paneling and beams give the dining room at Happisburgh Manor an airy light feel, while the giant rug adds an air of decadence
The modern-looking gym at Happisburgh Manor is complete with a rowing machine and a bike. It also has a massage bed in the adjacent room
The drawing room at Happisburgh Manor features a fire and a coat of arms. There is also a huge mirror and plenty of comfortable chairs
Potential purchasers are being given the chance to rent out country piles for a weekend to get a true feel of what it would be like to live there. If they go on to buy the property the rental cost will be taken off the sale price.
The stunning homes which went on the market in August were all bought and restored by Clarenco in 2010 and include Happisburgh Manor in Norfolk - with a price tag of £800,000 and Tempsford Mill in Bedfordshire, on sale for £2.8million.
the properties are currently being used as holiday lets, while a sixth, Bath Lodge Castle, is a hotel. However, all are now being sold as individual residencies.
Despite each boasting between eight and ten bedrooms, the properties are actually the smallest in Clarenco's portfolio which also features an abbey and a Napoleonic sea port.
The stunning Tempsford Mill in Bedfordshire overlooks the River Ivel and includes 6.5 acres of land. It also comes with a renovated old mill, a newer extension and outbuildings - it is on the market for £2.8million
The main bedroom at Tempsford Mill has a crisp but simple finish and features a striking purple-backed double bed
Although it has a modern finish the kitchen at Tempsford Mill still has original features from its former days as a mill
There is plenty of room to entertain guests in the main lounge at Tempsford Mill on the white sofas complete with plack and gold cushions
The dining room at Tempsford Mill oozes with elegance and features a large window and bookshelf
Clarenco was established by Dream beds founder Mike Clare, and estate's director David Lobb said he hoped the decision to market the properties in such an unusual way would prove to be a successful one.
He said: 'Given the unique nature of the properties and difficult market conditions, we are looking for a different approach to selling the properties.
'Every year hundreds of people take a luxury break in our fully refurbished country retreats and comment on how beautiful and unusual each of them are. This offer gives potential buyers a chance to experience their beauty and tranquillity before they decide if they want to own one of them.'
Managing director, Suzanne Taylor added: 'The sale of the properties is to fund the expansion of the Clarenco portfolio of unusual and luxury venues in the UK, which are used for weddings, exclusive use, corporate hire and luxury breaks.'
Set in 3.5 acres the historic Bath Lodge Castle near bath features ten bedrooms as well as a huge garden and woodland. Starting price is £1.75million
With purple curtains and a period piece wardrobe in the corner the main bedroom at Bath Lodge Castle looks fit for royalty
The chandelier hangs over the beautiful rustic wooden table in the dining room area at Bath Lodge Castle
Candles in the ceiling light up the table to give a sense of medieval times at the long dining table in Bath Lodge Castle
Stone walls and a striking fireplace stand out as the feature pieces in the drawing room at Bath Lodge Castle
The large reception area at Bath Lodge Castle is furnished with large leather chairs a stag light stand and a antique wooden chair
The properties are available for rent at between £550 and £1,500 a night.
Two of the properties for sale are being marketed by Savills: Beau Castle in Worcestershire (£2.3million) and Bath Lodge Castle in Somerset (£1.75million). Plas Cilybebyll, a beautiful nine-bedroom home in Neath (£1.5million) is being sold by Savills and Fine & Country.
Happisburgh Manor (£800,000) and Old Morley Hall in Norfolk (£2.5million) are being sold by Savills and Strutt & Parker; Tempsford Mill (£2.8million) in Bedrforshire is being sold by Fine & Country.
The interestingly-shaped Beau Castle in Worcestershire is located on a hill overlooking Wyre Forest and includes nine bedrooms. Offers start at £2.8million
Even the toilet looks special at Beau Castle with steps leading up to it. The bathroom also features a huge mirror and plenty of cupboard space
The Beverly Hills mansion that featured in The Godfather and The Bodyguard, and provided a romantic retreat for John F Kennedy and his new bride Jackie on their honeymoon, is being listed for $135 million.
The historic mansion, set on six acres of land close to Sunset Boulevard, has had only four owners since it was built in the 1920s, but countless A-list celebrities, royalty and high-profile figures have been guests there.
From the honeymooning Kennedys, to parties for Rihanna and Prince Albert of Monaco, the legendary Beverly House had become nearly as famous as those who have graced its rooms.
Starring role: Beverly House has appeared in several films, including The Godfather and The Bodyguard
Romantic retreat: The lavish estate was used by the Kennedys on their honeymoon
The sprawling estate, which includes a 50,000sq ft house, cascading waterfalls leading to a swimming pool, and a two-story library, is a mix of period features and luxurious flourishes.
A spa, 22ft tall hand-painted arched ceiling, billiards room complete with a carved fireplace from Hearst Castle in California, and parquet flooring are just some of the features in the 30-bedroom, 40-bathroom estate. Current owner Leonard Ross, who bought the mansion in 1976 when he was just 31, said it takes two hours to show prospective buyers around.
He paid $2 million for the house, but told ABC News that despite its current $135 million price tag the property was an 'investment that could only go up in value'.
He admitted that when he bought the property it was 'much larger than I needed'.
New chapter: The two-story library comes with an open fireplace, wood paneling and carved ceiling
Original features: The parquet floor and stone fireplace in the billiards room were installed when the house was built in the 1920s
The iconic home, made famous by the horse head scene in The Godfather, is being listed by Hilton Hyland, who describe it as a 'perfect combination of Italian and Spanish style'.
The property has an outside terrace that can seat 400 for dinner, an art deco nightclub, tennis courts, gym and array of guest cottages and accommodation for staff.
Built out of terracotta stucco, the H-shaped residence combines Spanish and Italian style. It has intricately carved ceilings and paneled walls, French doors, balconies, arched ceilings and floor-to-ceiling windows, which overlook the pool and Venetian columns beyond the pool house.
Alongside financier Ross, previous owners included newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst, who was given the house as a gift by actress Marion Davies, and banking executive Milton Getz, who commissioned Hoover Dam architect Gordon Kaufmann to build the home.
Star billing: The $135 million estate appeared in The Bodyguard, above, as the home of the character played by Whitney Houston
Dream home: It may have appeared in one of the nightmarish scenes from The Godfather, but Beverly House would be a fantasy for many people
Honeymoon: Jackie and John F Kennedy stayed at the luxury estate after their wedding in Newport
Room with a view: Huge windows overlooking the gardens and a door opening on to a terrace are found in the dining room
Historic: The home was built in 1925 by architect Gordon Kaufman, who is best known for his work on the Hoover Dam
Stylish: The H-shaped home has a flair of Spanish and Italian design
Party place: A nightclub, pool and terrace that can seat 400 people make Beverly House perfect for entertaining
Remote: Remarkable aerial image of the coastline shows just how isolated the five properties are
California isn't what it used to be, back in the days of swimming pools and movie stars. The state grew at a slower clip the past decade than during any other in its 160-year history, according to the census. Demographers question whether the boom-time growth will ever return. Click on a photo to compare a historical image — when the area was up-and-coming — to a present-day image.
What do Scottsdale, Arizona, Syracuse in upstate New York and the San Juan Islands off Washington have in common? They are all home to some of the most architecturally inspiring addresses in the United States.
The American Institute of Architects (AIA) has handed out the 2012 Housing Awards to projects at the pinnacle of design, creativity and sustainability.
The jury recognized projects in four categories - custom-built homes for one family, large structures which sleep many individuals in their own apartments and specialized buildings such as community centers.
The ten homes selected were: The Nakahouse, a space-age home in the Hollywood Hills; Relic Rock, a luxury home in Scottsdale, Arizona; The Pierre, a strange stone inspired home in the San Juan Islands off Washington state; The Camelview Village, a futuristic condo complex in Scottsdale, Arizona; Hampden Lane House in Bethesda, Maryland; The Live Work Home in Syracuse, New York; the luxury Carmel residence in Carmel-by-Sea, California; a new Jesuit Community centre in Fairfield, Connecticut; new low-budget homes in San Francisco and new college halls of residence in Houston, Texas.
Otherwordly homestead: Optima Camelview Village is a 700-unit condominium development comprised of eleven buildings linked by bridges in Scottsdale, Arizona
Spiritual setting: The Arizona complex draws inspiration from the surrounding mountains and Native American desert communities
Sit back and relax in your surroundings: A lounge area in the Optima Camelview Village in Scottsdale
The American Institute of Architects was established 150 years ago and has more then 79,000 members.
The One and Two Family Custom Residences award focus on remodelling of homes for individual clients. The Carmel Residence in Carmel-by-the-Sea, California was completed by Dirk Denison Architects. The owners wanted to marry a space that worked with the beauty of the natural surroundings and the nearby Pacific Ocean.
All rooms flow from a central courtyard with nooks for the kitchen and office spaces. Areas are separated by screens of solid mahogany and steel which move to allow air and light to circulate throughout the home.
The Hampden Lane House in Bethesda, Maryland by architect Robert M. Gurney is a simple cube where all spaces are utilized. It stands out from others in the neighbor for its style - but nevertheless is an environmentally conscious project.
Nakahouse in Los Angeles, by XTEN Architecture, is an abstract remodel of a 1960s hillside house with fluid indoor - outdoor spaces. Its cantilevered terraces and stark monochrome interior - white steel, plaster and concrete along with deep black plaster walls - give it a futuristic look despite its glamorous location under the Hollywood sign.
Inspired by its surroundings: Located in Carmel Bay, California, the Carmel Residence was conceived around one central room
California dream: The home by the coast has niche spaces that hide the kitchen and bedrooms around a central area paneled in solid mahogany and glass sliding doors
The art of zen: The open plan nature of the Carmel property allows air and natural light to flow through the entire home
The Pierre on the San Juan Islands, Washington was created by Olson Kundig Architects. The owner's desire to use stone throughout the home led to its name (pierre is stone in French). It was conceived as a bunker and is almost camouflaged by the nature which surrounds it.
Rock extrudes into the home, sitting at odds with more luxurious furnishings and fabrics used. Interior and exterior hearths are carved out of existing stone and the master bathroom sink and the powder room are fully carved out of the rock.
Relic Rock, another property in Scottsdale, Arizona was designed by DCHGlobal Inc. It is almost entirely sustainable - with the structure made of 99 per cent recycled steel. 'Floating' floor plans mean that the rocks around and under the property have been untouched.
Cook + Fox Architects designed the Live Work Home in Syracuse, New York. The home was created as a small, modern loft - an ecologically sound space in response to America's future housing needs that appeal directly to the environment in which they are built.
As Syracuse often has long, dark winters, the home is filled with skylight tubes and perforated screens that allow light to bounce.
Tranquil: Optima Camelview Village in Scottdale, Arizona uses greenery and water features to combat the desert heat
Room with a view: Nakahouse in Los Angeles is an abstract remodel of a 1960s hillside house
Spaceage: Nakahouse is an abstract remodel of a 1960's hillside house
Go with the flow: The LA home is made from white steel, plaster and concrete with contrasting black plaster walls
'Multifamily housing' recognizes apartment and condominium design - for both public and private clients that include open and recreational space.
David Baker + Partners designed the Drs. Julian and Raye Richardson Apartments in San Francisco - 120 permanent, supportive studio apartments for low-income formerly homeless residents, many with mental and physical disabilities.
The site of the project is a demolished freeway that has been transformed with plenty of green space and local shops. The eclectic style also gives the homes a sense of common identity and place in the neighborhood.
Drawing inspiration from the surrounding mountains and Native American desert communities, Optima Camelview Village in Scottsdale, Arizona (by David Hovey & Associates Architect, Inc.) is made up of 700 separate condominiums linked by planted-draped bridges designed to fend off the harsh climate. It is easy to walk around with plenty of courtyards and jutting landscaped terraces creating serene shelter.
The special housing award by AIA is for the design of housing that fits a specific purpose - homes for the disabled, rehabilitation centers or domestic violence shelters.
Rice University in Houston, Texas enlisted Hanbury Evans Wright Vlattas + Company with Hopkins Architects to build McMurtry & Duncan Colleges.
The two buildings are home to 650 students and faculty, weaving squares and tree-lined paths with innovative design that blends with the more traditional buildings on campus.
Also outstanding in this category was the Jesuit Community Center in Fairfield, Connecticut by Gray Organschi Architecture. Encompassing administrative offices, a chapel, community dining room, great room, and library, the Jesuit community wanted a building that would reflect their goal of acting as 'good stewards of the Earth'.
Star quality: The home, which sits right below the Hollywood sign, has several cantilevered terraces
Visionary: The Jesuit community center in Fairfield, Connecticut uses innovative technologies to reduce both short and long term impact on the environment
Building blocks: The Jesuit priests wanted their building to exemplify their goal as acting as good stewards of the earth
Good things in small packages: The LEED Platinum Live Work Home is an efficient, highly adaptable space designed as an urban infill prototype for shrinking cities in Syracuse, New York
The garage of the Syracuse home
Tres belle: Conceived as a bunker nestled into the rock, the Pierre - meaning French for stone - celebrates the materiality of the site
The Pierre, French for stone, celebrates the owner's affection for a stone outcropping on her property
The Pierre's interior and exterior hearths are carved out of existing stone and left raw
Arizona: Relic Rock is the prototype for a sustainable building system that is based on a three dimensional structural grid comprised of 99% recycled steel
The floor planes leave native boulder formations and natural topography untouched
The interior of the Red Rock home in Arizona
San Francisco: Richardson Apartments provides 120 permanent, supportive studio apartments for very-low-income formerly homeless residents, many with mental and physical disabilities
Green living: The San Francisco homes have on-site social services, generous outdoor and common spaces, neighborhood-serving retail
Bethesda: Hampden Lane House is designed as a cube and is approximately 2200 square feet
Sleek: The flat roof provides an additional 1100 square feet of outdoor living space with views of treetops and the downtown Bethesda skyline
The house is intended to be more site sensitive, environmentally conscious, and to provide comfortable, efficient living spaces
No place like home; The exterior of the Bethesda home
Mansion where John Lennon wrote songs for Sgt Pepper goes up for sale… but at £14m you might have to buy with a little help from your friends
The mansion where John Lennon is believed to have written tracks for The Beatles' legendary Sgt Pepper's album is on the market for £14m.
Lennon bought the six bedroom property in Weybridge, Surrey, for £20,000 on July 15, 1964, and lived there with his first wife Cynthia.
He lived in the luxury home until 1968 and is thought to have penned a number of tracks for The Beatles' eighth studio album Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, released in 1967, at the house.
Up for sale: Kenwood, the former home of John Lennon, is on the market for nearly £14million
Plush: The six bedroom property has six bedrooms, six reception rooms, six bathrooms and boasts 1.5 acres of land
History: John Lennon is believed to have written a number of tracks for The Beatles' legendary Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band album at the house
Wife: Lennon lived at the property with his first wife Cynthia (left) and is also believed to have written a number of tracks for Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (right) at the house
The band, formed in Liverpool in 1960, sold 70 million copies of the album.
It featured the hits With A Little Help from My Friends, Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds, and A Day In The Life. The property - which has been refurbished - contains a full-size snooker table and a heated indoor swimming pool with a sauna. It has six bedrooms, six reception rooms, six bathrooms and boasts 1.5 acres of land.
The 1,110.4 square metre home, called Kenwood, is situated at the heart of the exclusive St George's Hill Estate is on the market for £13,750,000.
It was originally called the Brown House when it was designed by architect T.A. Allen and built by local firm Love & Sons in 1913.
Home: Parts of a home movie showing Lennon at Kenwood in 1967 were featured in the film Imagine: John Lennon
Luxurious: The property is situated at the heart of the exclusive St George's Hill Estate and is on the market for £13,750,000
Pricetag: Lennon bought the property for £20,000 on July 15, 1964, and lived there until 1968
Neighbours: Kenwood is close to Sunny Heights, the former home of Ringo Starr, and a short drive from Kinfauns, George Harrison's former home in Esher
Legend: John Lennon bought the house in 1964 and sold it in 1968
It was renamed by manufacturer Ken Wood when he owned the property.
Parts of a home movie showing Lennon at Kenwood in 1967 were featured in the film Imagine: John Lennon.
Kenwood is close to Sunny Heights, the former home of Ringo Starr, and a short drive from Kinfauns, George Harrison's former home in Esher.
In October 2006, the stunning home went back on the market, with an asking price of 5.95 million pounds.
Costly: The house was sold in January 2007 for £5.8m and is now back on the market being sold by estate agent Knight Frank
Changing names: The property was originally called the Brown House when it was designed by architect T.A. Allen and built by local firm Love & Sons in 1913
Leisure: The property contains a full-size snooker table and a heated indoor swimming pool with a sauna
Naming: The home was renamed by manufacturer Ken Wood when he owned the property
Legendary: The Beatles in the Apple offices, in London, for the launch of Sgt Pepper's in June 1967 - the album went on to sell 70m copies
It was sold in January 2007 for £5.8m and is now back on the market and is advertised by estate agent Knight Frank on their website.
The advert reads: 'Kenwood is situated at the heart of the exclusive St George's Hill Estate, acknowledged as one of the UK's premier private residential addresses.
'The house occupies a superb plateau position set around St George's Hill's renowned golf course, tennis club and leisure amenities.
'Kenwood overlooks magnificent landscaped gardens and grounds and enjoys uninterrupted views of the Surrey Hills.'
Resting place: One of the six bedrooms in the house, which is now on the market for nearly £14million
Exclusive: The estate agent's advert says the house is 'situated at the heart of the exclusive St George's Hill Estate, acknowledged as one of the UK's premier private residential addresses'
Design for life: wo new residential colleges at Houston's Rice University have also been nominated
For years, the Citroen 2CV was the laughing stock of British roads.
The upturned pram or tin snail was slow and old fashioned. Conceived before the war, to carry a farmer’s eggs across a rough field, nearly 5million ‘ugly ducks’ were sold.
The last of the quirky little French cars left British showrooms in 1990 costing £4,552 on the road.
But the 2CV has now, most definitely, had the last laugh.
Prices for the 600cc deux chevaux are now rocketing, with refurbished cars selling for £11,000.
The incredible origami house that can change its shape to face the Sun
There are houses for cold climates, which are designed to keep in the precious warmth; there are houses for hot climates where architecture allows for air to sweep through and keep inhabitants cool. However, until now, the two were difficult to combine. But this new incredible folding house is able to, in the words of its creators, 'metamorphosize' into eight different configurations to adapt to seasonal, meteorological and even astronomical conditions.
Autobots, transform! This computer generated graphic shows the incredible concept for a house that can 'metamorphosize' into eight different configurations depending on the weather
For example, in the summer plan, bedroom one faces east and watches the sun rise as its inhabitants wakes up. It can then rotate so that the user is constantly in sunlight, while the house generates energy through its solar panels. The revolutionary home is based on the work of an early 20th Century mathematician who discovered a way to dissect a square and rearrange its parts into an equilateral triangle. The flexibility of the house allows adaptation from winter to summer and day to night by literally moving inside itself. Thick heavy external walls unfold into internal walls allowing glass internal walls to become facades; doors can become windows, and vice versa. The layout consists of two bedrooms, an open-plan living room and a bathroom, but it too can be adapted to suit the needs of different living situations.
Design: The revolutionary home is based on the work of an early 20th Century mathematician who discovered a way to dissect a square and rearrange its parts into an equilateral triangle
Adaptable: Thick heavy external walls unfold into internal walls allowing glass internal walls to become facades; doors can become windows, and vice versa
Living space: The layout consists of two bedrooms, an open-plan living room and a bathroom, but it too can be adapted to suit the needs of different living situations. The incredible house is the brainchild of British architects David Grunberg and Daniel Woolfson, who launched the D*Haus company to develop the concept. The shape-shifting home was first conceived as part of Mr Grunberg's graduation project, for which he designed a house that could withstand the extreme sub-Arctic temperatures in Lap Land, a region infamous for its harsh weather. The pair's design, which they call D*Dynamic, is based on the work of English author and mathematician Henry Dudeney, a leading puzzle creator. In 1903 Dudeney invented a way to cut an equilateral triangle into four pieces that could be rearranged into a square, a conundrum he dubbed the 'Haberdasher's Puzzle'. The D*Dynamic house realises this mathematical curiousity as a solution to living in extreme climates. Sections would fold out on rails so interior partitions could become exterior walls in warm weather. The whole building could even rotate to follow the direction of the Sun throughout the day.
Now watch the D*Dynamic house transform. In a release, D*Haus describe their house, which is yet to be built, as 'a product of an applied mathematical realisation'. 'The D*Haus Company is set to cause a revolution in architecture and design by transforming Dudeney’s idea from the conceptual, to the physical,' the release adds. 'Inspired by Dudeney’s logic puzzle, each D*Haus dwelling is capable of adapting to changing patterns of living in the future. 'D*Haus is continuing the journey that Dudeney began by breathing new life into a century-old concept; not only to define a space, but a lifestyle.'
INSPIRED BY THE WORK OF A BRILLIANT AMATEUR MATHEMATICIAN
Henry Ernest Dudeney (April 10, 1857 – April 23, 1930) was an English author and mathematician who specialised in logic puzzles and mathematical games. He is known as one of the country's foremost creators of puzzles.
Mathematical basis: Henry Dudeney's Haberdasher's Puzzle inspired the design of the house. Although Dudeney spent his career in the Civil Service, he continued to devise various problems and puzzles. Dudeney's first puzzle contributions were submissions to newspapers and magazines, often under the pseudonym of "Sphinx." Dudeney later contributed puzzles under his real name to publications such as The Weekly Dispatch, The Queen, Blighty, and Cassell's Magazine. For twenty years, he had a successful column, "Perplexities", in The Strand Magazine. One of Dudeney's most famous innovations was his 1903 success at solving the Haberdasher's Puzzle, which involved cutting an equilateral triangle into four pieces that can be rearranged to make a square. A remarkable feature of Dudeney's solution is that the each of the pieces can be hinged at one vertex, forming a chain that can be folded into the square or the original triangle. Two of the hinges bisect sides of the triangle, while the third hinge and the corner of the large piece on the base cut the base in the approximate ratio 0.982: 2: 1.018. Dudeney showed just such a model of the solution, made of polished mahogany with brass hinges, at a meeting of the Royal Society on May 17, 1905.
Raise the drawbridge! Rich homeowners are going medieval to protect their homes and installing MOATS
In the never-ending search for exclusivity amongst high-end home-buyers the latest must-have feature is to have a moat encircling your property.
Back in medieval times, moats served as a line of defense from marauders, but nowadays the concept has been re-branded by exclusive architects as ‘wraparound water features.’
Celebrity home-owners are of course ahead of the curve on this kind of thing and so supermodel Gisele Bundchen and New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady had a moat included as part of their $20 million French-style estate in Brentwood, California, which they moved into earlier this year.
Supermodel Gisele Bundchen and New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady had a moat included as part of their $20 million French-style estate in Brentwood, California
The couple's extensive water feature looks more like a winding stream than a means of defense and is home to some expensive koi fish rather than alligators. A stone bridge leads to the main entry.
The amazing property was the work of architect Richard Landry, one of the hot designers credited with creating this new trend. Another celebrity who was at the forefront of the trend for ‘wraparound water features’ is Jennifer Lopez. The star’s former home in Bel-Air, which recently resold for $10 million, includes an arched footbridge and a cobblestone driveway cross a stone-lined waterway that encircles the French-style villa.
Jennifer Lopez's former Bel-Air home included an arched footbridge and a cobblestone driveway cross a stone-lined waterway that encircled the villa
Château de Vaux-le-Vicomte in France: Moats were historically deep, broad ditches used to provide castles and towns with a preliminary line of defense
Moats were historically deep, broad ditches used to provide castles and towns with a preliminary line of defense.
In some places, moats evolved into more extensive water defense systems, including lakes and dams, though in later periods they became largely ornamental.
The modern day equivalent have taken on a much more atheistically pleasing design features.
At one $36-million Beverly Hills contemporary, a narrow ‘demi-moat’ serves a practical purpose and takes the place of a guardrail, which would have obstructed the outstanding views of the city.
Christina Aguilera's fabulous mansion: 'Wraparound water features' are all the rage with architects building properties for the rich and famous
Celebrating 50 years of the world's best-loved sports car: The Porsche 911
A new book celebrates the history of the Porsche 911, from its humble beginnings in post-war Germany to global cult status
1963: The very first Porsche 911 set the tone for the next 50 years, with its sloping back, distinctive circular headlights and slanted windscreen
Engine 2.0 litre
Beloved of celebrities the world over, and, like a Rolex watch or a tailored suit, one of the most enduring ‘I’ve made it in the world’ purchases, the Porsche 911 has surprisingly humble origins. In fact, the world’s most popular sports car is arguably descended from the Volkswagen Beetle. Porsche’s emergence as a carmaker in post-war Germany was inextricably linked to that of Volkswagen (it’s now part of the Volkswagen Group).
Before the war, its founder, Ferdinand Porsche, had designed the Beetle, and in the late Forties the firm found success with the Beetle-derived 356. By the late Fifties, Porsche was in need of a successor to satisfy demand. After several years of intensive work – during which a larger four-seat option was considered – Porsche’s engineers had a prototype to reveal to the world. At the 1963 Frankfurt Motor Show, they unveiled the car that would go on to sell over 800,000 units (and be driven into a truck by Lindsay Lohan): the 911. In fact, the car that Porsche displayed in Frankfurt was called the 901. The ‘911’ name arose because Peugeot claimed the rights to all three-digit model numbers with a 0 in the middle. So Porsche simply changed the 0 to a 1.
On the inside, while there have obviously been technical advances, one basic element remains key to the car's identity: a counter-intuitive set-up that sees the engine placed right over the rear axle, driving the rear wheels. Famously, the 911’s design has barely changed in five decades. Line up any two models and you’re immediately looking at the same shape. The wheelbase might have been lengthened over time, the windscreen tilted back a few degrees, bumpers and spoilers added and taken away, but that silhouette remains. No other car looks so close to how it did in the Sixties. And on the inside, while there have obviously been technical advances, one basic element remains key to the car’s identity: a counter-intuitive set-up that sees the flat-six engine placed right over the rear axle, driving the rear wheels. For many years this made the 911 a challenging drive, as in overconfident hands or poor conditions it was liable to spin at a moment’s notice. Famous 911 drivers include U.S. chat-show host and motoring obsessive Jay Leno, David Beckham, Arnold Schwarzenegger and – in a recent departure from his lifelong love of Ferraris – Jay Kay. The most devoted celebrity fan, though, is surely comedian Jerry Seinfeld, who owns over 50 Porsches, including many 911s.
The wheelbase has been lengthened over time, the windscreen tilted back a few degrees, bumpers and spoilers added and taken away, but the classic shape remains
The Porsche is a 'wormhole of detail and specificity' says fan Jerry Seinfeld
Says Seinfeld of his collection, ‘Oh, I know it’s insane. They’re an obsession.
'Top Gear wanted to have me on, so I had dinner with Jeremy Clarkson, but it turned out he didn’t like Porsches, so we had nothing in common.
'What do I like about them? For me to take you down that corridor would bore you to tears. It’s a wormhole of detail and specificity. 'I’ve driven a lot of other cars, but that’s only reinforced my impression that the Porsche is the only properly designed automobile. ‘My favourite is the 959 from the mid-Eighties, at the time the fastest production car in the world. There’s nothing like it. 'They cost about a million dollars each to produce and they sold at $250,000, so they were losing $750,000 a car. But it has a feeling of quality about it that’s unique.’
A legend in motorsport
You can't make sports cars for over 60 years without acquiring a little racing experience: This 911-derived 935 won at Le Mans in 1978
Steve McQueen in Le Mans
You can’t make sports cars for over 60 years without acquiring a little racing experience. Since the launch of the 356 in 1948, Porsche has clocked up a world record 28,000 race victories – not all in 911s, it must be said – including 16 wins in the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The endurance-race heroics of the 1970 Porsche team were immortalised by Steve McQueen in the 1971 film Le Mans – in which he raced Porsche 917s, which can trace their origins back to the father of the 911, the Porsche 356. In 1978 the 911-derived 935 won at Le Mans. Nicknamed ‘Moby Dick’ after its whale-like elongated bonnet and tail, the 1978 model 935 is one of the most iconic cars to come out of Porsche’s motorsport division – and with a top speed of 235mph, one of the most ferocious.
World's fastest electric car revealed: 155mph two-seater will go 190 miles on a single charge - and cost £90,000 (allegedly)
It can reach a top speed of 155mph, and drive for 190 miles on a single charge.
The Detroit Electric SP:01 is the world's fastest electric car, and is set to take on Paypal billionaire Elon Musk's Telsa Roadster is the lucrative electric sports car market.
Only 999 of the cars will be built, and the plans have been masterminded by a team of executives from Lotus, who set up the firm five years ago to revive the century old brand.
Detroit Electric's two-seat all electric sports car SP:01, which can reach speeds of 155mph
Boasting 155 mph (249 km/h) top speed and covering the 0-62mph (0-100 km/h) in 3.7 seconds, the SP:01 has a range of almost 190 miles between recharges which takes 4.3 hours according to the auto maker
Price: £90,00, $135,000
Only 999 will be made
155 mph (249 km/h) top speed
0-62mph (0-100 km/h) in 3.7 seconds
Range of almost 190 miles
Charging time 4.3 hours
Detroit Electric, a startup electric-car maker reviving a brand that dates back more than a century, unveiled its first
With a projected top speed of 155 mph, the Detroit Electric SP:01 is 'the world's fastest pure-electric sports car' the company says, adding the two-seater has a range of 'just under 190 miles' between charges.
The $135,000, battery-powered sports car is to go into limited production in August.
Founded more than five years ago, Detroit Electric enters a still-nascent market that is struggling to find buyers.
One of its would-be rivals, Fisker Automotive, a hybrid-electric sports-car company that hasn't built a car since last summer, has hired a law firm to advise on a possible bankruptcy filing.
The car will be built in the Detroit area at a dedicated plant with an annual capacity of 2,500, the company said Wednesday at a reception at its new headquarters in Detroit's historic Fisher Building. Detroit Electric plans to build only 999 SP:01's, which it says will be followed by 'a new family of all-electric production cars, including two other high-performance models that will enter production by the end of 2014.'
The SP:01 appears to borrow heavily from the British-built Lotus Elise - no surprise considering a number of Detroit Electric executives previously worked for various affiliates of Lotus Cars.
Versions of the Elise have been used by other low-volume carmakers, notably Tesla Motors, which based its $100,000-plus Roadster electric car on the Lotus chassis.
The SP:01 will also see the revival of the century-old Detroit electric brand
The SP:01 has a range of almost 190 miles between recharges which takes 4.3 hours according to the auto maker
The SP:01 will also compete with the Telsa roadster, which previously held the record with a top speed of 125 mph (201 km/h).
Detroit Electric said the SP:01 was being introduced 'following a five-year development and road-test program.'
The Detroit Electric brand had been dormant since 1939.
Previously, it was used on a series of electric cars built in Detroit from 1907.
The brand was revived in 2007 as a joint venture between China's Youngman Automotive Group - which tried unsuccessfully to acquire bankrupt Swedish automaker Saab in 2012 - and a small California-based electric-car company called Zap.
The venture hired Lotus Engineering in 2007 to provide contract design and technical services. In late 2007, Albert Lam, the chief executive of Lotus Engineering, joined the venture as chairman and was named CEO of Detroit Electric in 2008.
The Fisker Karma car, the other major rival in the the electric car stakes
The new car will compete withe the Telsa roadster, pictured, but outpaces its top speed of 125mph with 155mph
A company based near Bradford has set up a production line, turning old 2CV wrecks back into new cars, and is also making new chassis... and sending them to France to keep the French cars alive
Prices for the 600cc deux chevaux are now rocketing with refurbished cars selling for £11,000
British company 2CV City pays around £300 for the scrap cars from all around Britain
In a true ‘coals to Newcastle’ story, one company based near Bradford, West Yorkshire, has set up a production line, turning old wrecks back into new cars, and is also making new chassis... and sending them to France to keep the French cars alive.
Tony Shields, 58, who owns 2CV City said: 'We sell nearly 300 chassis a year to the French - and a few of our refurbished cars too.
'French restoration leaves a lot to be desired. Over there, the MOT isn’t as stringent - they just seem to keep the cars in one piece by riveting new bits of metal to them.
'Twenty years ago, there were enough good ones around that they didn’t need refurbishing - good second-hand cars were retailing for up to £700.
'But now we’re paying £300 for scrap cars. We buy them from all over the country – and some from France too.
Tony Shields, 58, who owns 2CV City said: 'We sell nearly 300 chassis a year to the French - and a few of our refurbished cars too'
Mr Shields: 'French restoration leaves a lot to be desired. Over there, the MOT isn't as stringent - they just seem to keep the cars in one piece by riveting new bits of metal to them.' Above, a 1988 2CV Dolly, Plums and Custard. Fully restored and on sale for £10,995
Owner of 2CV City, Tony Shields, is seen with another classic French car
'Part of the attraction is their simplicity. Their electrical components are simple and people can work on them themselves.'We have about six cars in production at any one time. There are two levels of restoration on our cars. 'They cost between about £5,000 and £11,000 for a fully rebuilt car. 'We can’t get hold of old cars quick enough. We recently sold one to one of The Hairy Bikers!'Our fully restored cars are made with new body panels and many new or reconditioned parts. 'They come with a 12-month warranty and, if well looked after, could last for another 15 years.
'They leave here as they would have left the factory – although we can fit a CD player and speakers if customers want them.'
Mr Shields employs six full-time staff and restores a variety of 2CV-based vehicles including vans and vehicles dating back to the 1950s.
They make chassis and have a huge selection of new and used parts.
He also sells a selection of other classic French vehicles.
Last week, he bought a black 60-year-old Peugeot van from France.
'It was a used by a funeral company – it was so ugly – I just had to buy it', he said.
Mr Shields employs six full-time staff and restores a variety of 2CV-based vehicles including vans and vehicles dating back to the 1950s
BIRTH OF THE 'TWO STEAM HORSES': A SHORT HISTORY OF THE 2CV
The French Citroen 2CV Dolly, from 1985
The prototype for the Citroen 2CV - 'an umbrella on four wheels' - dates back to the 1930s' design by engineer Pierre-Jules Boulanger.
Officially unveiled at the Paris Motor Show in 1948, the name is an abbreviation of 'deux chevaux vapeur' - which translates as 'two steam horses'.
Regarded as a simple, reliable vehicle, the economy car was produced by the French manufacturer up until 1990.
It was famously heralded as being able to be driven across a ploughed field without breaking the eggs it was carrying.
Over its 42-year production run, the car was a great commercial success - around 5million units were sold, including just over a million vans.
In 1981, a yellow 2CV was driven by James Bond in the film For Your Eyes Only, including a chase sequence through a Spanish olive farm.
From 1988 onwards, production took place in Portugal rather than France. This continued for two years until 2CV production halted.
Citroen 2CV owners and their cars arrive for the 16th World Meeting of 2CV Friends in the Scottish border town of Kelso in 2005; right, a patriotic 2CV in Paris, capital of
MOTORING NOW AND THEN
The financial crisis and our ageing population has brought about an army of older workers who are turning to taxi driving, property development and cleaning to make ends meet. Figures released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) today showed that the number of workers above the official retirement age has doubled since 1993, from 753,000 to 1.4million last year, with most of that rise coming since 2000.
While some of the increase is down to the high number of baby-boomers reaching retirement, the figures also showed that the proportion of workers above retirement age was rising faster than the population generally - indicating that a higher proportion of this age group is staying in work than previously. Face of things to come: More of those above the retirement age are working - with taxi driving proving a popular choice among male pensioners. Some 7.6 per cent of those aged above the state retirement age were in work in 1993, compared to 12.0 per cent last year.
DO OLDER WORKERS STEAL JOBS FROM YOUNGER WORKERS?
It's a popular claim - surely if older people are staying in work longer it takes jobs from younger people, writes Andrew Oxlade. And how can this be in any way sensible or fair when youth unemployment has risen sharply during the financial crisis. But the overwhelming view from economists say is that this simply isn't true. In fact, they have a technical term for it: 'the lump of labour fallacy'. This, they say, is the belief that there is a fixed number of jobs in the economy. In reality, the economy expands, broadly, with the size of the workforce – one of the reasons for political acceptance of immigration. Analysis by the ONS showed that 39 per cent of workers above the retirement age are men and 61 per cent are women. This may reflect the lower levels of pension provision for women arising because of periods out of work to raise children, as well as generally lower employment benefits than their male counterparts.
Around two-thirds of male workers in this group are in jobs classed as higher skilled, while almost two thirds of women are in lower skilled roles. There are higher proportions of part-time work and self-employment among older workers, reflecting efforts by older people to reduce their workload in a more gradual way, rather than switching directly from full-time work to retirement. The ONS report also suggested that improved standard of health were allowing people to work longer, but that lower incomes in retirement were also playing a part. The property boom and rise of private buy-to-let landlords - often older people who have seen their property wealth balloon - is reflected in the figures. 'Property manager' is included as one of the more popular roles being carried out by older men. The most popular jobs undertaken by men after the retirement age were farming and taxi driving, while there were signs that executive level workers were choosing to work longer with high numbers of marketing and sales directors, production managers and chief executives among older male workers. A woman's lot is harder, the ONS figures suggest, with common roles among older female workers including cleaning, administration assistance, care working and retail. Rise of the grey army: More people are working past the retirement age. People in, or close to, retirement have been faced with the prospect of a substantially reduced income thanks to the financial crisis. Pension funds have been reduced as stock markets have been battered by recession conditions in the world's developed economies. Additionally, the return on annuities - bought at retirement to provide an income for life - are at record low levels because yields on the assets that fund them, gilts, have been pushed lower by the policies adopted to combat slower growth in the economy.
However, while much of the motivation to stay in work is financial, campaigners for older people said that many were choosing to stay in the labour market for other reasons too.
How older people work: There is a higher proportion of self-employed and part-time workers among older workers. Dr Ros Altmann, Director-General of Saga, said: 'Many older people are increasingly choosing to stay at work, often part-time so that they ease more gently into retirement. If they feel fit and healthy and want more money, and are able to work, they are choosing to do so. 'Saga’s research shows that many of our over 50s already want to work past 65. 71 per cent would like to work part time rather than retiring and in fact 7 per cent are already working past the age of 70. This isn’t just for the money - work satisfaction, feeling useful and the social benefits we gain from working were key reasons that people wanted to continue.' The trend for older workers will continue, according to Tom McPhail, head of pensions research at Hargreaves Lansdown. 'This is an inevitable consequence of more and more people arriving in their 60s with inadequate retirement savings', he said. 'This trend will accelerate over the next few years; it presents a significant challenge to individuals and employers who will need to find ways to accommodate more flexible working patterns and later retirement ages.’ The state retirement age had remained steady - 60 for women and 65 for men - for many decades until increased life expectancy forced plans to raise it. The last Labour government drew up plans to equalise retirement ages between the sexes and then raise them for all over the coming decades. The Coalition government accelerated plans so that the retirement age will rise to 66 for both men and women by 2020. A further rise to 67 will commence in stages from 2026.
Darren Philp, policy director for the National Association of Pension Funds, said: 'Our rapidly changing demographic is hitting home. Having more older people in the workforce will increasingly become the norm.
'The problem comes when people want to retire but end up stuck at work because they cannot afford to leave. With half the workforce not saving into a pension, this is going to become a painful reality for millions. It is vital that we get more people planning and saving for their old age, and that they start as early as possible.'
Geographically, employment rates for older people in the regions was consistent with rates for the working population generally, with the South boasting the highest employment rates.
However, the one exception was London. For the younger population, London only ranks eighth of 12 in terms of the employment rate, but for older people it has the 2nd highest percentage in employment, behind the South East. This may reflect the higher cost of living and the greater variety of jobs in London which might provide an incentive for older workers to remain in the labour market. ONS stidy shows a higher proportion of older workers in the affluent South East.
When General Motors engineers and designers started work on the next-generation Corvette, they drew up the usual requirements for the star of American muscle cars. Killer looks. Big engine. Handles like a race car. But topping the list back was something at odds with the roar of the car's big V-8: Gas mileage.
Green machine: The all-new 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray has all the styling and power of the classic car with greatly improved gas mileage
On the way: The new Corvette will arrive in showrooms this fall. The new Corvette could not be a gas guzzler. Stricter government rules were forcing a leap in fuel economy. If the car burned too much gas, it would trigger fines from regulators and never get built. 'There won't be a Corvette if we don't care about fuel economy,' said Tadge Juechter, the car's chief engineer. But the 2014 Corvette is here, the first all-new version in nine years. The king of American sports cars, driven by astronauts and celebrated in a Prince song, rolled out Sunday night in Detroit. It will arrive in showrooms this fall. To many fans, the new Corvette symbolizes the rebirth of America's auto industry after its near death in 2009, showing the world that it again can lead in technology, styling and performance — at a lower cost that European competitors. Getting there was tough for the 1,000-member Corvette team, which gave the car the code name 'C7.' GM's bankruptcy slowed development twice.
Curves: The car's beautifully styled body should be the envy of any sports car enthusiast
Rebirth: To many, the new Corvette symbolizes the return of America's auto industry after its near death in 2009. With each delay, new safety and gas mileage regulations forced changes. The Corvette team overhauled the car: aluminum replaced steel, super-light rivets held parts together, and the V-8 engine kicked down to four cylinders at highway speeds, saving fuel. All the changes helped it overcome nine years of government crash safety requirements that could have bloated the car. But even with the lighter materials, the regulations have pushed its weight to a little more than the current base model's 3,200 pounds.
Always in style: The new car's fuel economy should be much better than the current base model's 16 mpg in the city and 26 on the highway . Still, it's an engineering achievement. The Corvette is so new that it only shares two parts with the current model. GM said testing is still being done on the car's fuel economy, but it'll be better than the current base model's 16 mpg in the city and 26 on the highway. Juechter said the window sticker highway mileage won't reach 30 mpg, but he wouldn't be surprised to see some drivers get that or more.
Body work: The hood slopes low to slice through the wind, while all the vents and scoops have functional purposes like cooling the brakes or transmission. The car's usual buyers — men in their mid-50s — will also notice dramatic changes on the outside of the two-seat car. The hood slopes low to slice through the wind. All the vents and scoops have functional purposes like cooling the brakes or transmission. On the back, designers took cues from the1963 Corvette, with a sloping roof that tapers toward the bottom. The car has a small Stingray badge on each side, complete with gills. And there's a more modern rendition of the Corvette's crossed-flag logo. A 6.2-liter small-block V-8 with 450 horsepower takes the car from zero to 60 mph in under four seconds. That's at least a few tenths of a second faster than the current base model. Engineers also redesigned the somewhat-chintzy interior, giving it a jet cockpit look with leather, carbon fiber and soft plastics. GM hopes the styling, performance and updated dashboard electronics will expand the car's appeal to younger buyers. The Corvette's been a favorite of adrenaline junkies for 60 years. Mercury astronaut Alan Shapard owned one from the first year — 1953. The company won't quote a price on the 2014 model. But Juechter said someone who bought the current version can afford the new one. The Corvette starts at $49,600.
Sticker shock: The new Corvette starts at $49,600, roughly $30,000 less than its competitor, the Porsche. That is more than $30,000 below what GM considers its chief competitor, the Porsche 911. The car makes a decent profit for GM despite relatively low sales, Juechter said. GM wouldn't give sales targets for the new car. Last year it sold only 14,000 of the aging Corvettes, down from over 30,000 the first few years after the current version was rolled out. Porsche sold about 8,500 911s last year. The prospect of a new 'Vette has fans waiting anxiously, browsing the Internet for unauthorized photos or drawings. Thousands of aficionados live in the U.S., and even Europe and the Middle East. John Browning, 70, president of the Renegard Corvette Club of Hollywood, Fla., one of 600 such clubs in the U.S, said some Corvette lovers can't contain themselves. 'I've got one member, he just sold his '13 in anticipation, to wait for the '14,' said Browning. 'I think the Corvette is the icon. As far as I'm concerned you can't get a better deal.'
54 Olds could have “killed” the Corvette
Thanks to John Stokes
This is the car that in 1954 could have ‘killed’ the Corvette.
Vintage 1929 Bentley becomes the most expensive British-made car ever sold after going for £5million at auction
A vintage Bentley has sold for a record-breaking £5million making it the most expensive British-made car ever sold at auction.
The legendary 1929 Bentley was sold for a staggering £5,042,000 at the Goodwood Festival of Speed today smashing the previous British-car record of £3.5 million paid in 2007 for a 1904 Rolls-Royce.
Auction house Bonhams would not confirm the identity of the buyer, who was bidding for the Bentley over the phone.
Record-breaker: A vintage Bentley has become the most expensive British-made car ever sold after it fetched a staggering £5million at auction
Heyday: Sir Henry 'Tiger Tim' Birkin set a lap record in the red Bentley at Brooklands Outer Circuit in 1931 when it hit 137mph
The bright red Bentley was once owned and raced by Sir Henry 'Tiger Tim' Birkin who set a lap record in the car at the iconic Brooklands Outer Circuit in 1931 when it hit a staggering 137mph. Birkin was one of the most famous of the Bentley Boys - a group of wealthy men who raced the British sports cars in the 1920s and 30s.
His life was tragically cut short in 1933 in a freak accident after he burned himself on an exhaust pipe during a race. The burn became infected and he died from septicaemia at the age of 36. His iconic Bentley was later bought by the groundbreaking horologist George Daniels, who owned it until his death last year.
Impractical: The 1929 vintage Bentley has just one seat and no storage room making it inconvenient for lengthy journeys
Powerful: The Bentley Blower is one of only 50 made and boasts a 4.5 litre engine
The Bentley - which has just one seat and no storage space - is part of the incredible George Daniels car collection being auctioned off at Goodwood in Sussex.
Watchmaker George Daniels bought the Bentley and described it as the 'most exhilarating' car to drive
The car, known as a Bentley Blower, was fitted with a 4.5-litre supercharged engine which developed 240bhp. Just 54 were built, with the sports cars capable of accelerating from 0-60mph in just 8 seconds.
Classic car enthusiast Daniels loved the Bentley, once writing that 'for all its inconvenience it is a most exhilarating car to drive both on the road and track'.
Malcolm Barber, Bonhams chief executive officer and auctioneer at the Daniels sale, said: 'The prices achieved for George Daniels’s cars today are a fitting tribute to one of the truly great artist engineers of the 20th Century.
'George was not only a fantastic craftsman who hand-made some of the world’s most desirable watches, he was also a car connoisseur held in immense respect throughout the vintage motoring world.'
Doug Nye, a car historian, added: 'It is wonderful to see this iconic car’s true value recognised by the world market.
'The Birkin single-seater Bentley was, in effect, the Concorde of its time, the fastest car around the high Brooklands bankings.
'It was driven by a great British hero in Sir Henry Birkin and was the most glamorous racing car of the era.'
Sleek: Mr Daniels, who died last year aged 85, also owned a Jaguar E Type V12 worth around £30,000
Smooth: A 1954 Bentley R Type Continental, worth an estimated £450,000, also went under the hammer
Racer: A 1908 Itala Grand Prix Car was also expected to be a big sale at the auction
Historic: The Maharajah of Bhavnagar's 1929 Bentley - worth an incredible £500,000
Vintage: A 1907 Daimler Type 45 also went on sale at the Bonhams auction
he fastest car ever built in Britain with a top speed of 217mph is officially unveiled today. The McLaren P1 can rocket from zero to 62mph in under three seconds, hit 124mph in under seven seconds and 190mph in under 17. Believe it or not, it also promises to be as environmentally clean as a family saloon thanks to its ‘green’ petrol-electric plug-in hybrid technology.
Stunning: The McLaren P1, the fastest car ever built in Britain, has been unveiled today
Fast: The car has a top speed of 217mph and can go from 0 to 62mph in under three seconds
Rapid: The new McLaren can hit 124mph in under seven seconds. The red-hot two-seater, designed for use both on the road and race-track, will cost £866,000. And that’s without a carpet, which will be an optional extra on this purist sports car built at the firm’s state-of-the-art factory in Woking, Surrey. McLaren has already increased its workforce by 100, to 1,000, to build the car. A spokesman for the company said: ‘It is the most technologically advanced and fastest series production car ever to come from the UK.’
Modern: The McLaren P1 is said to be the 'spiritual successor' to the three-seater McLaren F1
Environmentally-friendly: The car's 'green' petrol-electric plug-in hybrid technology also promises to make it as environmentally clean as a family saloon
Interior: The car will set you back £866,000, with carpets as an optional extra
To maintain exclusivity, only 375 will be built. Half of those have been sold already, with some customers buying two. It is the ‘spiritual successor’ to the three-seater McLaren F1, launched in 1993 with a price tag of £600,000 but which now fetches up to £4million at auction.
Exclusive: Only 375 of the cars are to be built and half of those have been sold already. Car-mad comedy actor Rowan Atkinson is expected to be at the head of the queue for the machine, having recently secured a £910,000 insurance pay-out to restore his McLaren F1 after he crashed it.The P1 is powered by a mid-mounted 3.8litre twin-turbo V8 petrol engine developing 727 brake horse-power, which sits behind the driver and passenger. It is connected to a lightweight 176bhp electric motor, and the company claims that the two work ‘seamlessly’ to keep down emissions. The total combined power of 903 brake horse-power – linked to a dual clutch seven-speed F1-style racing gearbox – is equivalent to nine Ford Fiestas. The engine set-up promises ‘instantaneous throttle response’, says McLaren. Lightweight batteries behind the driver store charge generated by the petrol engine but a plug-in charger can also be used to boost energy levels from empty to full in two hours. As a result the car produces zero emissions when running on electric power only and has a range of 12.5miles at an average city speed of 30mph. ‘That’s more than enough for an owner to enter, for example, a city-centre zero emissions zone, have dinner and return home,’ says McLaren. Overall, the McLaren P1 emits an average of 200g/km of CO2 – about the same as a Honda Accord 2.4litre family saloon. The rival Bugatti Veyron emits 559g/km of carbon dioxide while the Ferrari 458 averages 307g/km.
Car-mad: Comedy actor Rowan Atkinson is expected to be at the head of the queue for the machine
Dashboard: The car is to be launched officially at the Geneva Motor Show on March 5
Technology: McLaren says the P1 features Formula 1-derived race technology which increases speed and acceleration
Power: The car's 'instant power assist system' propels the car from rest to 190mph in under 17 seconds
Special date: The first deliveries of the car are planned for September 2 to coincide with McLaren's 50th anniversary. The P1 features Formula 1-derived race technology which the company says increases speed and acceleration. It has an ‘instant power assist system’ that propels the car, rocket-like, from rest to 190mph in under 17 seconds – more than 35 per cent faster than even the F1. The car will be launched officially at the Geneva Motor Show on March 5, with the first deliveries planned for September 2 to coincide with McLaren’s 50th anniversary. A company spokesman said: ‘Our goal is to create the best driver’s car in the world on both road and track. A maximum speed which is electronically limited to 217mph should be sufficient for most.’
McLaren's stunning new supercar, the P1 will have a staggering 903bhp
The P1 has a 3.8-litre twin-turbocharged engine which develops 727bhp. But it also benefits from an electric motor which adds a further 176bhp to the car's total output
A spokesman for McLaren has called the P1 the 'most technologically advanced production car ever to come from the UK'
These models, including the American Tesla Roadster, feature the latest technologies, such as electric, hybrid, hydrogen and low-emission petrol and diesel power units.
Green: American Tesla Roadster
More traditionally, the London-to-Brighton veteran car run takes place tomorrow and celebrates the ‘Emancipation Run’ held on November 14, 1896.
That marked the scrapping of the Red Flag Act, which limited the speed of cars to walking pace and required a man to walk in front of vehicles with a red flag.
The first car leaves Hyde Park at official sunrise — 7.04am — and the event has attracted 572 entries from around the world, including the first Skoda car produced, a 104-year-old Voiturette dating from 1906.
The oldest vehicle on display will be an 1894 Benz from GGermany.
Other stars are likely to be the 1904 Darracq and yker from The Louwman Collection — better known as the cars that starred in the 1953 film Genevieve, as driven by John Gregson, Kay Kendall and Kenneth More.
The 21st-century cars taking part in the inaugural RAC Brighton-to-London Future Car Challenge today will include the latest electric, hybrid and low-emission cars and light commercial vehicles.
Among these are the Volkswagen Golf-e-motion prototype electric vehicle and the Nissan Leaf electric car, as well as Honda’s hydrogen-powered electric fuel cell vehicle, the Clarity.
There will also be hydrogen fuel cell hybrids from Toyota and Mercedes-Benz. Vauxhall has entered its Ampera electric hybird car, while the UK-based Ecotricity has its 134mph Nemesis supercar.
Starting at Brighton’s Madeira Drive, from 8am today, this event will use the traditional
60-mile veteran car run route, but in reverse. See futurecarchallenge.com and lbvcr.com for details.
Small, perky and easy on the eye, the pocket and the environment, Fiat has just launched the TwinAir version of its best-selling 500 super-mini.
The low-consumption 875cc two-cylinder petrol engine develops just 85 horse-power.
Yet its top speed is still over a ton — 108 mph to be exact — and it will accelerate from rest to 62mph in 11 seconds.
Fiat has just launched the TwinAir version of its best-selling 500 super-mini
The car comes as London Mayor Boris Johnson removes the city’s Congestion Charge for sub-100g/km CO2 cars.
A Fiat spokesman said: ‘The ruling means the 500 TwinAir, which emits just 95g/km CO2, will be one of the few petrol cars entitled to travel across the capital without incurring a charge.’
The new 100 per cent discount scheme for greener vehicles comes into force from January 4, 2011. Owners have to register their car for an annual payment of £10.
The low emissions mean there’s no annual road tax (vehicle excise duty or VED) to pay and it averages 68.9 miles to the gallon, managing 57.6mpg around town and 76.3mpg when cruising.
The Fiat 500 TwinAir starts at £10,665 for the TwinAir Pop and rises to £16,065 for the convertible 500C TwinAir by Diesel.
UK holiday discount drive sees 20% wiped off cost of a 'staycation'
A new campaign offering 20.12 per cent slashed off bills at participating venues will be unveiled by Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt on Wednesday to boost 'staycations'.
The scheme includes hotel accommodation, meals, guided tours and entry to attractions, with discounts funded by the industry.
Staycation: The London Eye is one of the many attractions in the UK taking part in the 20.12 discount scheme
Government officials said more than three million hotel rooms were already lined up under the project, which is being backed by a range of companies, including Butlins.
Attractions, such as the London Eye and Alton Towers, are also taking part.
Reduced prices will also be offered on stays on the Royal yacht Britannia, now moored in Leith, Edinburgh, and visits to Chatsworth, the historic house in Derbyshire.
Tourists will be able to take advantage of the discount by using a dedicated website before the end of the Paralympics on September 9 to make bookings for this year and 2013.
Mr Hunt said: 'With the Diamond Jubilee and the 2012 Olympic Games, this year is the perfect opportunity for more of us to holiday in the UK.
'With so much going on, and this fantastic new 20.12% discount scheme, it's a great opportunity to see what Britain has to offer.'
Mr Hunt has travelled the UK, urging companies to take part in the scheme, telling them: 'It's now or never for London tourism.
'We will never have a year like 2012 to show the world that this is, quite simply, the most exciting, vibrant, cosmopolitan city on the planet.
'The inevitable moans and groans in the run up to an Olympics must not cloud the scale of the opportunity - including our biggest ever tourism marketing campaign to make sure we get a lasting benefit from being in the global spotlight.'
The scheme will be promoted by a £3 million television advertising campaign – the first of its kind in the UK.
The government hopes the 'holidays at home are great' campaign – launched by VisitEngland – will create 12,000 jobs, create 5.3million extra short overnight breaks, and generate £480million in extra spending over three years.
VisitEngland’s Chief Executive, James Berresford added: '2012 offers the tourism industry an unprecedented opportunity to grow domestic tourism by inspiring Britons to take a holiday at home.
'Spear-heading the promotion will be a high profile TV campaign and specially devised website offering discounted offers of 20.12% off or better.'
This rare 1928 Mercedes, unearthed after 60 years sitting in a garage without seeing the light of day, is expected to sell for a staggering £1.5million at auction.
Described as the supercar of its generation, the 'S' Type model was one of the world's fastest vehicles when it rolled off the production line in 1928, easily reaching speeds in excess of 100mph.
And it’s Ferdinand Porsche designed engine and hand crafted chassis made it one of the earliest luxury sports cars ever mass produced. Incredibly despite having been locked away since the 1950s, it still runs perfectly.
Rare find: The unrestored 1928 Mercedes S Type was unearthed after 60 years sitting in a garage
Nippy: The S-Type model was one of the world's fastest cars when it rolled off the production line in 1928 easily reaching speeds of 100mph
It has been owned by the same family from new and experts have hailed the discovery one of the most considerable automotive finds, with unrestored cars of its type extremely rare.
The cobweb clad car - first registered on the roads in May 1928 - is set to go under the hammer at Bonhams’ Goodwood Revival sale on September 15.
Automotive expert, Rupert Banner, said: 'At a time when motor cars in original condition and with impeccable provenance are appreciated more than ever, this one-owner car offers an unrepeatable opportunity for collectors.
Upholstery: The car's untouched interior. It is now going under the hammer at Bonhams' Goodwood Revival sale on September 15
Find: Experts have hailed the discovery one of the most considerable automotive finds with unrestored cars of this type extremely rare
'It has literally been off the radar. No one knew such an untouched and archaic this old existed. It is an incredible find.'
The unidentified owners grandfather - a pioneering British motorist - was one of the earliest buyers of the Mercedes ‘S’ Type, which sparked mass production due to its popularity.
And according to the cars unworn handbook, it was sold under the order number 38130 and bought from The British Mercedes Ltd in London.
Detail: The unidentified owners grandfather - a pioneering British motorist - was one of the earliest buyers of the Mercedes 'S' Type, which sparked mass production due to its popularity
The motors dark battleship grey bodywork was crafted by London-based coachbuilders Cadogan Motors.
Described as a time warp, the convertibles original blue upholstery is still intact.
The car re-established Mercedes’ reputation for building fast, luxurious and high quality motorcars.
Serial number: According to the cars unworn handbook, it was sold under the order number 38130 and bought from The British Mercedes Ltd in London
Built to last: Incredibly despite having sat in a garage for 60 years the Mercedes still runs perfectly
A spokesman for Bonhams said: 'This newly discovered 1928 Mercedes-Benz 'S' Type Sports Tourer is almost without precedent.
'Motor cars of this type and age have rarely been in the same family ownership from new.
'It is expected to sell for more than £1.5m. In for the long haul? The electric car with a 500-mile range could finally match petrol power for distance
Green, they may be. But electric cars have struggled to overcome one of the main shortfalls that put buyers off - an inferior range to their petrol-powered rivals. That may be about to change after a new electric car was unveiled that promises to go 500 miles (800km) before the battery needs recharging. This would be far more than one of the current leaders in the field, the battery/ gasoline Chevrolet Volt, which can do around 375 miles (600km) on one charge-up.
Going the distance: The QBEAK electric car which promises to go 500 miles before the battery needs recharging
On the horizon: A battery/fuel cell demonstration model of the QBEAK is expected to arrive sometime in 2013. The Modular Energy Carrier concept (MECc), created by three Danish companies, uses bio-methanol to bolster its battery life. Mogens Lokke, CEO of ECOmove, designers of the innovative 'QBEAK' car said bio-methanol was far better than diesel or gasoline because it produces substantially less carbon dioxide. 'In combination with the way we built the car, which is really lightweight (425 kilograms), we can get the 500-mile range,' he told CNN. A bio-methanol/ water is converted by the fuel cell to create electricity, while waste heat from the process powers the car's heating and cooling system.
One right royal potential owner: Prince Charles has a look inside one of ECOmove's electric concept cars during a visit to Denmark earlier this year
Keen interest: Prince Charles and Camilla were both given the low-down on the new designs when they visited Vitus Bering Innovation Park in May. It also benefits from a innovative chassis design which has really pushed the technology forward. 'Instead of putting in a fixed battery, we have built in (six) modules that can be fitted inside the chassis. We can use battery power in the modules or any other kind of energy source,' Lokke said. The award-winning QBEAK also uses patented in-wheel electric motors to deliver a top speed of 75mph (120kph). The car caught the attention of royalty earlier this year when Prince Charles and Camilla paid a visit to Denmark.
Driver: A novel chassis design means it will contain six electric modules rather then a single fixed battery
Imminent: The QBEAK project hopes to launch a battery-powered model with a range of 186 miles this year. They both climbed into the QBEAK car when they arrived at Vitus Bering Innovation Park in May. Mr Løkke, introduced the e-car and its many features, while the royal couple listened attentively. Prince Charles promised to follow ECOmove in the future and said that he finds the QEAK-concept very interesting. 'This is indeed a fantastic opportunity for us to spread the message about ECOmove and our e-car QBEAK to a wider audience', he said. According to Mads Friis Jensen from Serenergy, the designers of the fuel cell, bio-methanol is a cheap and abundant fuel with a short carbon chain.
Challenging petrol: The award-winning QBEAK also uses patented in-wheel electric motors to deliver a top speed of 75mph (120kph)
Green machine: The car's fuel cell converts a bio-ethanol/ water mix into electricity to power the battery. Compared to gasoline, bio-methanol production can cut CO2 emissions by more than 70 per cent. The U.S. Department for Energy (DOE) says direct methanol fuel cells are not hampered by the storage problems that affect other green fuels like hydrogen because as a liquid it's easier to transport and supply through current infrastructure. The QBEAK project hopes to launch a battery-powered model with a range of 186 miles (300 kilometers) later this year.
The battery/fuel cell version is expected to arrive sometime in 2013.
It really is hands free! Self-driving Mercedes-Benz is unveiled - and it should be available within seven years
Daimler, the maker of Mercedes-Benz and Smart cars, has announced that it will start selling a self-driving car by 2020.
It is thought the car will be able to drive on its own in most situations but will still hand control back to the driver during difficult situations such as dealing with traffic lights.
The move could help Daimler regain its position as the leading luxury car market from its rival BMW.
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It is thought the car, which will be able to drive on its own in most situations, will still hand control back to the driver during difficult situations such as dealing with traffic lights. ‘We want to be the first to launch autonomous functions in production vehicles. You can be sure: we will accomplish that in this decade,’ said Daimler head of development Thomas Weber. The technology featured at this week's Frankfurt car show but won’t come to market for another 10 years. The German car maker has been working on improving its driverless technology over the past few years and recently became the world’s first car manufacturer to demonstrate autonomous driving in rural and urban traffic. Last month, a Mercedes Benz S 500 Intelligent Drive research vehicle, drove autonomously through a 100-kilometre-long route from Mannheim to Pforzheim in Germany.
Last month, a Mercedes Benz S 500 Intelligent Drive research vehicle drove autonomously through a 100-kilometre-long route from Mannheim to Pforzheim in Germany
The driverless S-Class was able to deal with some difficult situations involving traffic lights, roundabouts, pedestrians, cyclists and trams particular challenge for autonomous vehicles is the way in which they communicate and interact with other cars. Coming to an agreement with an oncoming vehicle on who should proceed first around an obstruction is something that requires a very great deal of situational analysis. 'Where a human driver might boldly move forward into a gap, our autonomous vehicle tends to adopt a more cautious approach,' said Prof Ralf Herrtwich, head of driver assistance and suspension systems at Daimler. 'This sometimes results in comical situations, such as when, having stopped at a zebra crossing, the vehicle gets waved through by the pedestrian – yet our car stoically continues to wait, because we failed to anticipate such politeness when we programmed the system.' The research vehicle was equipped with production-based sensors for the project. Developers taught the technology platform to know where it is, what it sees and how to react autonomously. With the aid of its highly automated 'Route Pilot', the vehicle was able to negotiate its own way through dense urban and rural traffic. The driverless S-Class was also able to deal with some difficult situations involving traffic lights, roundabouts, pedestrians, cyclists and trams. Existing technology already partly automates driving to assist during, for instance, traffic jams, by maintaining a safe distance with the car in front.
In July, the UK government said it will allow driverless cars on public roads for the first time during trials to take place this year. During the ground-breaking road tests, an expert will have to remain in the driving seat. Scientists at Oxford University are working with Nissan in Sunderland to create ‘robotcars’ that can drive themselves independently using details of the road they are driving on stored in on-board software. The Nissan self-drive Leaf electric car is controlled by an iPad, and the Oxford team behind it claim the technology could be installed in mainstream cars as a £60 option. Mercedes unveils S500 Intelligent Drive
The future: Most big car-makers are already developing self-drive technology and incorporating elements of it into cars already on the road Cameras and lasers built into its chassis map a 3D model of its surroundings when it is driven manually, which is fed into a computer stored in the boot. The car can then ‘remember’ routes. It prompts the driver via an iPad on the dashboard to engage the autopilot and, at a touch of the screen, the car assumes control. A laser at the front scans 164ft ahead 13 times per second for obstacles, such as pedestrians, cyclists, or other cars in an 85-degree field of view. If it senses an obstacle, it slows and comes to a controlled stop. The driver can tap the brake pedal to regain control of the vehicle from the computer. Sweden’s Volvo, Vauxhall’s U.S. parent General Motors, and Germany’s Volkswagen are also working on the technology.
Stunning vintage car was later owned by Warner Brothers
It appeared in films such as Inside Daisy Clover and The F.B.I. Story
Will go under the hammer at Blenheim Palace this Saturday
A car which belonged to one of the biggest names in the history of Hollywood cowboy films is set to fetch more than £130,000 when it goes under the hammer in a UK auction.
With its impressive Hollywood history and a whopping a 7.7L engine, the incredible Rolls Royce Phantom I Playboy Roadster is expected to cause a stampede of interest from film buffs around the world.
Auctioneers estimate the hammer will fall in excess of £120,000 for the 1927 model once owned by Tom Mix, one of Hollywood’s finest stars during the 1920’s.
Star car: This stunning Rolls Royce Phantom I Playboy Roadster, which belonged to silent movie cowboy Tom Mix, is expected to sell for £130,000 at auction
Cowboy Tom was the biggest names of the Hollywood silent film generation, appearing in a staggering 291 films between Between 1909 and 1935.
He bought the car in 1933 and spruced it up with the latest features to ensure that it was special enough to be driven by a star such as himself.
Former owner: Actor Tom Mix appeared in a staggering 291 films between Between 1909 and 1935
The headlights were lowered, the wings underwent a radical updating, a fog light was added and an ultra-modern radio was built into the dash.
Despite being 85 years old, the beautiful motor still has a top speed of 90mph enough to send any bidder sailing happily into the sunset.
The lot is due to go under the hammer at Coys specialist motor auction this Saturday at Blenheim Palace, Oxfordshire, and has been drawing lots of attention from film fans with enough cash to splash.
Potential bidders have also been impressed by the chance to own a car with such a dazzling Hollywood history outside of the US.
Tom was fatally injured in a car crash with his other classic car, a Cord L29 in 1940 but this was not the end of the Rolls’ big screen roles.
Warner Brothers snapped up the car after Tom’s death and it spent the next three decades making appearances in some of their classic films.
The Hollywood great Robert Redford got behind the wheel of the Rolls Royce in the 1965 film Daisy Clover.
Since then two collectors have carefully maintained the Phantom to the pristine condition that it’s now being sold in.
Coys’ auctioneer, Chris Routledge said: 'The valuation on this car is about what we’d expect but because of the brilliant history that comes with it, the sky really is the limit for how much this car will sell for.
Stampede: With its impressive Hollywood history and a 7.7L engine the vintage motor is drumming up a lot of attention from film buffs around the world
The beautiful car will go under the hammer at Coys specialist motor auction this Saturday at Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire
Horsepower: The Roller's massive 7.7L engine is in pristine condition
At the wheel: The car was driven by Robert Redford in the 1965 film Daisy Clover
Custom job: Film star Mix personalised the car by lowering the headlights and updating the wings. A fog light was added and an ultra-modern radio was built into the dash
Film producers Warner Brothers snapped up the car after Tom's death and since then two collectors have carefully maintained the Phantom
'It’s the only car of this type in the world so we’ve had a lot of interest from Japan and America.
'The only reason that we have this car is because it’s coming from a deceased estate, otherwise it’s unlikely that anything of this sort would ever come up for sale.
'It’s always fascinating in this line of work when a car like this comes up for sale.
'It’s very exciting especially because of it’s California and Hollywood links.'
THE TRAGIC DEATH OF HOLLYWOOD'S FIRST WESTERN MEGASTAR
Thomas Edwin 'Tom' Mix was Hollywood's first western megastar appearing in an incredible 291 films between 1909 and 1935.
A real-life cowboy, he worked as a ranch hand and was an excellent shot and and expert with a lasso.
His first film The Cowboy Millionaire, was released on October 21, 1909 after which his popularity exploded. As his fame grew he was able to command hefty sums for his appearances.
Screen cowboy: Tom Mix riding his horse in 1925 after he had become Hollywood's first western megastar
Married five times, his style would go on to define the Hollywood western genre and influence future screen cowboy's such as Ronald Reagan and John Wayne.
It was on the afternoon of October 12, 1940, that the 60-year-old Mix, was driving another of his cars, a 1937 Cord 812 Phaeton,on Arizona State Route 79 near Florence.
He had been visiting Pima County Sheriff Ed Nichols in Tucson but had stopped at a gambling and drinking den the Oracle Junction Inn,
He was reportedly driving at around 80mph when he rolled the car into a gulley.
On the package shelf behind him was an aluminum suitcase containing a large amount of cash as well as traveller's cheques and jewels.
It reportedly slammed into back of the head, shattering his skull and breaking his neck. He was killed instantly.
Jaguar today unveiled its sexy new two-seater F-Type roadster – the spiritual successor to the legendary E-Type sports car of the 1960s.
The uncompromising convertible designed to take on the might and performance of Germany’s Porsche is to have its official unveiling at next week’s Paris Motor Show, some fifty years after the car which inspired it.
Jaguar Land Rover bosses say their British challenger will go into direct competition with the likes of Germany’s Porsche 911 – causing some to dub it the ‘Porsche-buster.’
The 'Porsche buster': Jaguar's new two- seater F-Type roadster, the spiritual successor to it's iconic E-Type sports car, has been released 50 years after the original went on sale
Shrouded in secrecy: The new F-type as disguised prototype at Goodwood. The official reveal in Paris next week is heralded as a 'truly significant day' by the motoring giant
The scintillating sports car with contemporary styling and a particularly cute rear will offer drivers a choice of two 3-litre V6 or an even more powerful 5-litre V8 engine fitted to an eight-speed gearbox offering blistering performance and superb handling.
New Jaguar F-Type
Price: From £55,000
The F-Type is being seen as the ‘spiritual successor’ to the E-Type of the 1960s, but is pitched as a truly 21st century car in terms of design, technology and performance.
It will sit in size below the larger XK grand-tourer sports car but is expected to give a massive ‘halo’ effect to the whole Jaguar brand.
The higher performance F-Type models will accelerating from 0-62mph in less than five seconds and have top speeds well in excess of 155mph and in some cases nudging 190mph. The open-topped roadster will cost from around £55,000 when they goes on sale in Spring. A hard-topped coupe version is expected to follow in late summer 2014.
Jaguar released some early official photographs after some of the images and details leaked out.
Adrian Hallmark, Jaguar global brand director, said the F-Type's launch in France will be a ‘truly significant day’ as the firm returns to the sports car market.
He said: 'As its sporting forebears did in their era, the F-Type will break new ground by delivering stunning sports car performance while vividly demonstrating Jaguar's cutting-edge engineering technologies and world-class design excellence.
Ian Callum, director of design who created the car and has promised to buy one for his heirs out of his own money , added: ‘A true sports car needs to be pure in both its purpose and its form; to have the opportunity to produce such a car for Jaguar has been a privilege both for myself and for my team.’
Iconic: The original Jaguar E-Type was manufactured by the car giant between 1961 and 1974
A 'proper' sports car: The original Jaguar E-Type was 'pure in both its purpose and its form'
Lean, green, speedy machines: Porsche and BMW unveil hybrid supercars that are built for racing - but are MORE efficient than a Toyota Prius
Supercars are not usually known for their fuel efficiency, but both Porsche and BMW have debuted hybrid vehicles that are less thirsty at a petrol pump than a Toyota Prius. Unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor show, the Porsche 918 Spyder can reach 60mph in less than 2.8 seconds, while BMW's futuristic i8 takes less than 4.4 seconds to reach the same speed. But the sleek sports cars are designed to be fuel efficient as well as fast. Porsche's Spyder can also do 72 miles per gallon and is almost a third more fuel efficient than the Toyota's Prius, while the BMW i8 is even less thirsty as it can manage 113 miles per gallon.
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Unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor show, the Porsche 918 Spyder can reach 60mph in less than 2.8 seconds proving its racing credentials. But the sleek sports car can also do 72 miles per gallon and is almost a third more fuel efficient than the Toyota's popular hybrid model - the Prius
BMW has finally taken the wraps off its much-teased hybrid supercar, which has a top speed of 155mph and is capable of doing 113 miles per gallon. The futuristic i8 is the car manufacturer's 'most advanced' sports car
PORSCHE 918 SPYDER SPEC
Top speed: 211 mph but 93mph when purely electric
Acceleration: 0-62mph in 2.8 seconds
Body: The two-seater car is made of carbon fibre
Drivetrain: The model is a parallel full hybrid comprising a 4.6 litre engine and hybrid module with electric motor
Engine: The V8 provides 608 horsepower and together with the electric capability has 887 horsepower
Energy supply: Lithium-ion battery and mains-compatible plug-in charger
Range: 18 miles when purely electric
AC charging times: Less than 7 hours using a household socket and 2 hours on an industrial socket
Porsche's £537,000 offering is a carbon fibre supercar with a plug-in hybrid drive, making it the latest racing car manufacturer to try and make more eco-friendly cars sexy.
The company said: 'Never before has a supercar designed for everyday use offered such an impressive dynamic performance combined with the fuel consumption of a compact car.'The car was designed from scratch to be a high-performance hybrid and is 'virtually silent' like most electric vehicles.
It combines a combustion engine with an electric motor system to boost its performance.
The Spyder has a top speed of 211 miles per hour - 93mph when solely using the electric motor - and has a V8 engine, which combined with its electric capability, provides 887 horsepower.
Wolfgang Hatz, member of the Porsche AG Board of Management in charge of research and development, said: 'We promised a great deal with the 918 Spyder, namely to redefine performance, efficiency and driving pleasure. We have kept our word.'
The Porsche 918 Spyder is displayed at the 65th Frankfurt Auto Show in Frankfurt, Germany. The car has a plug-in hybrid drive, making Porsche the latest sports car manufacturer to try and make more eco-friendly cars sexy
Wolfgang Hatz, member of the Porsche AG Board of Management in charge of research and development, (not pictured) said: 'We promised a great deal with the 918 Spyder, namely to redefine performance, efficiency and driving pleasure. We have kept our word'
When let loose around the famous racing circuit, Porsche said that the 918 Spyder completed the 12.8 mile track in just six minutes and 57 seconds.
The hybrid car shaved 14 seconds off the previous Nurburgring record for a street-legal car, making it the fastest super car built for normal roads to race the course.
Dr Frank Walliser, head of the 918 Spyder project, said: 'The radical hybridisation of the 918 Spyder from the very outset is what made this record possible.
'The Nordschleife is and remains the toughest measure of a super sports car. Posting a time of 6:57 minutes, we have achieved a result of which the development team and everybody at Porsche can be rightly proud.'
Porsche CEO Matthias Mueller, left, and former rally driver Walter Roehrl show off the 918 hybrid sports car at the motor show. When let loose around the Nurburgring, Porsche said that the 918 Spyder completed the 12.8 mile track in just six minutes and 57 seconds
The 918 Spyder hybrid car shaved 14 seconds off the previous Nurburgring record for a street-legal car, making it the fastest supercar built for normal roads to race the course. Chairman of the board of Porsche AG, Matthias Mueller is pictured in the car
HOW DO THE CARS COMPARE?
BMW has finally taken the wraps off its much-teased hybrid supercar, which has a top speed of 155mph and is capable of doing 113 miles per gallon.
The futuristic i8 is the car manufacturer's 'most advanced' sports car ever and is powered by a relatively small 1.5 litre turbocharged engine which, combined with an electric motor, generates 362 brake horsepower.
This gives the plug-in hybrid a 0 to 62mph time of just 4.4 seconds and an electronically limited top speed of 155mph.
While it is fast, the i8 also claims to be 'green' and emits just 59g/km of carbon dioxide as well as being fuel-efficient for a sports car.
Power from the petrol engine goes to the rear wheels while the electric motor goes through the front.
The car is capable of being driven in electric mode for 22 miles at a top speed of 75mph and BMW claims the i8 can have its battery charged from zero to 80 per cent in less than two hours.
The i8 is powered by a small 1.5 litre turbocharged engine which, combined with an electric motor, generates 362bhp. This gives the plug-in hybrid a 0-62mph time of just 4.4 seconds and an electronically limited top speed of 155mph
When fully charged and with a full tank of fuel, the four-seat i8 can be driven for around 310 miles before needing to be topped up.
BMW has been teasing the arrival of its more eco-friendly supercar for a long time with drawings of concept cars, but has now confirmed the car will go on sale in July next year and will cost £99,845.
Making its debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show, the distinctive car looks like a new member of the BMW family but has upwards-opening scissor doors and daring details like its 'iBlue' neon trim on the grille, 'side skirts' and back bumper.
While it is fast, the i8 also claims to be 'green' and emits just 59g/km of carbon dioxide as well as being fuel-efficient for a sports car. When fully charged and with a full tank of fuel, the four-seat i8 can be driven for around 310 miles before needing to be topped up
Talking about the design, the company said: 'The structure of overlapping and interlocking surfaces contributes to the unmistakable appearance of the BMW i8. This layering principle allows aerodynamic forms to be wrapped up in a progressively styled package.'
The body is made of carbon and aluminum and the mixture of colours apparently show off the way the air flows over the car, while its shape means there is no need for a spoiler.
The company said: 'The new BMW i8 combines the performance of a sports car with the fuel consumption of a small compact car, boasting impressive efficiency and sustainability without forfeiting driving dynamics.
Talking about the design, the company said: 'The structure of overlapping and interlocking surfaces contributes to the unmistakable appearance of the BMW i8. This layering principle allows aerodynamic forms to be wrapped up in a progressively styled package'
'No compromises, but rather the optimal combination of driving pleasure and responsibility.
'The BMW i8 is a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle that brings together the advantages of electro-mobility and innovative engine technology.
'The result is an extraordinarily dynamic driving experience - with extremely low fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.'
The i8 began its life as a pure concept car six years ago and there were no plans for production, according to Top Gear.
The interior is as edgy as the exterior of the new car. The i8 has 'glass cockpit all-screen instruments' and lightweight seats as well as the distinctive neon blue trim seen on the outside of the car
Officers examine a car that has wrapped itself around a tree, spilling its interiors onto the street in Boston in 1933Passersby try to figure out how this car ended up nose-down in a trench in Boston's West End. A glance at the rough, dirt-covered road provides a clueThe scene of an accident in 1935. Information with the photo reveals a car stolen by joyriding children crashed into a lawyer's car, killing himGiving a rare glimpse of the day's fashion, a group of men look over a crumpled car that sits by the side of a residential Boston streetCrowds pose for photographer Leslie Jones alongside a mangled and burnt out wreck in Boston in 1933A police officer poses next to a car that flipped over manoevring around corner in Roxbury, Massachusetts in 1935.This truck stood no chance when it came into contact with a tree on a rural Mass. road, disintegrating on impact - leaving just the steering wheel intact.A fireboat struggles to haul a car out of the Fore River in Quincy, Massachusetts in 1933. They succeeded, but couldn't save the three passengers, who drownedThis car came out loser in a battle of wills with a trolley bus on Boston's South End in 1932Children peer out of the undergrowth as photographer Leslie Jones captures a nasty wreck smoulding by the side of the road in HinghamCrowds watch in awe as a car is winched out of the Charles River in Cambridge, Mass in 1933. close to the Harvard University campusTaken in 1934, this photograph shows a truck balancing on a bridge in Dorchester by just one wheel. Workers from the Walter Baker & Co chocolate factory rushed out of the building in the background to watchAnother angle from the same accident shows how close the truck is from toppling into the waterThis car remarkably survived a collision with a utility pole in Cambridge, Mass - with just a mangled bumper to show for the crashThe driver of this car was unlikely to have survived this collision. The wreck is wrapped entirely around a tree, which sits in the driver's positionThe shell of a truck is pulled from the Charles River after it careered off the Harvard BridgePhotographer Leslie Jones had to part crowds of onlookers to capture this accident in downtown Boston. An out of control car collided with a shopfront, smashing windows and ending up on its sideLocal businessman Byron Harwood and Byron Grover were hurt when their car collided with a bus in Waltham, Mass. in 1921. They were lucky to survive this nasty looking wreck. Their car certainly didn'tTaken in 1934, this photo shows a car that skidded out of control on ice-covered roads and wrapped around a tree in Auburndale, Mass.A truck collideded with a bus and flipped over in south Boston, stopping just before it smashed into a cafeteria storefrontAnother view of the same accident shows eager children posing with the upturned truck. it also demonstrates how close the vehicles came to nearby buildingsA Cudahy Packing Co. truck is hauled out of Fort Point Channel, which separates South Boston and downtown BostonEven public servants weren't immune to accidents. An early mail truck came out loser in this battle with a tree on the tree-lined Commercial Avenue, BostonSitting in a Boston wrecking yard, this cross section of a wreck shows how basic car interiors were in the early days of motoring.
Thousand-year-old haunted Swedish palace that housed the royals and was visited by stars from Greta Garbo to David Guetta is expected to sell for £6.2million
This Swedish palace has housed and hosted the upper echelons of high society from the King of Sweden to Hollywood royalty Liz Taylor and is now expected to fetch £6.2million at auction.
According to those who have lived and worked in Häringe Palace, many of the residents who lived there never left.
The 11th Century estate is supposedly one of the most haunted houses in Sweden but currently operates as a luxury hotel.
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Palace: This Swedish palace has housed and hosted the upper echelons of high society from the former King of Sweden to Liz Taylor. Mercury Press
By the lake: The 17-building complex is in a luscious green rural area by the water but is just 45 minutes outside of Sweden. Mercury Press
Lavish: The classic interior is fitting for the royals and aristocratic guests that it would house and host once upon a time. Mercury Press
Modern twist: The classic mansion also has some more contemporary features and boasts a few colourful quirks. Mercury Press
High society: A chandelier hangs from the ceiling with an artistic mural above, left. The hallway has classically arched ceilings, right. Mercury Press
Grand approach: The drive up to the impressive main house is lined with trees and street lamps. Mercury Press
Once owned by the King of Sweden, the 17-building property has also hosted Liz Taylor, Greta Garbo and David Guetta.
It's set in luscious green grounds but is just 45 minutes away from Stockholm.
But it's now going under the gavel with Sotheby's and it's expected to sell for £6.2million - 80million Kroner.
Sales Agent, Lennart Alveborg said: 'Since the year 1000 Kings, nobles and some of Sweden's most well known entrepreneurs have been the owners of Häringe Palace.
'It's had owners like Gustav Vasa, Torsten Kreuger and Axel Wenner-Gren with guests such as Greta Garbo and Josephine Baker have given Häringe an incredibly rich and colourful history.'
Gustav Vasa or Gustav I who acquired Häringe in 1525 is considered by many to be the father of modern Sweden while Axel Leonard Wenner-Gren made his fortune as head of the Electrolux brand.
Torsten Kreuger was a swedish industrialist who built factories and owned the estate between 1929 and 1934. His brother Ivar is said to have once controlled three quarters of all match production in the world and became known as the Match King.
Royal: Once owned by the King of Sweden, the 17-building property has also hosted Liz Taylor, Greta Garbo and David Guetta. Mercury Press
Expensive taste: The incredible estate is now going under the gavel and it's expected to sell for £6.2million - 80million Kroner. Mercury Press
Pitcher and piano: This room for entertainment has hosted parties with some of the world's biggest stars and wealthiest people. Mercury Press
Sleep easy: Anyone with deep enough pockets to buy this opulent home will be very comfortable indeed. Pictured left his the enormous kingsize bed in one of the many bedrooms and pictured right is a the kind of refreshment one might enjoy at Häringe Palace. Mercury Press
En-suite: The majority of bedrooms within this vast estate come complete with their own bathrooms. Mercury Press
Artistic licence: The house is incredibly tastefully decorated with the perfect mix of classic furniture, artwork and some quirky features too. Mercury Press
All-rounder: Greta Garbo was such a frequent visitor that the owner made her a room that was totally round because she once told him that she hated corners, pictured left. Right is a lavish fireplace being enjoyed by a dog. Mercury Press
Press Officer Cornelia Hermelin said: 'When Kreuger owned the Palace they had humongous parties where people wore nothing and drank champagne until the sun came up.
'The Palace was then bought by the Wenner-Grens who owned Electrolux. Greta Garbo, Elizabeth Taylor and Danny Kaye were friends and frequent guests at the Palace.'
Greta Garbo stayed at the palace so often she had a room built specially for her. It was constructed on the orders of Axel Wenner-Grens without any right angles as the actress said she didn't like corners.
Mediums who have visited Häringe report finding paranormal activity throughout the estate grounds, and both staff and guests often tell stories about incidents that have no rational explanation.
Pool party: The property comes complete with a hug outdoor pool, perfect for lavish, high-society parties in the Swedish summer. Mercury Press
Awash with style: From the clean and sharp white washroom on the left to the bright and colourful chairs on the right, this home mixes the classic and contemporary. Mercury Press
Light and bright: The sun floods the drawing room in the daytime but this property has a dark side too. It's said to be haunted. Mercury Press
The wife of previous owner Axel Wenner-Gren Marguerite was so superstitious and she always slept with 40 pairs of slippers arranged around her bed. If they were still in order when she woke up it meant that no ghosts or spirits had visited her during the night.
Among the Häringe ghosts are Marguerite Wenner-Gren herself, two maids and a 400-year-old monk. However according to staff, the spookiest story relates to a boy named Axel Horn.
When he was just two years old, Axel froze to death during a particularly cold winter night. Axel and his sister Agneta were mistreated by their aunt while their father was away fighting a war on the continent.
Staff say many guests have told of waking to the sound of a child crying violently. One visitor is said to have reported waking in the night to a boy standing beside her bed.
Her brother had many children who were afraid of the dark and in her groggy state, she mistook the child for one of her nephews. 'Get in,' she said, and lifted the blanket.
Before falling back asleep, the woman noticed how chilled the small boy felt. The next morning, she was surprised to find she was sleeping alone.
Unexplained guests: Mediums who have visited Häringe report finding paranormal activity throughout the estate grounds. Mercury Press
Bowled over: The house has its own bowling alley, pictured left, and boasts small and comfortable living rooms like the one pictured right. Mercury Press
Dine in style: Gustav Vasa or Gustav I who acquired Häringe in 1525 is considered by many to be the father of modern Sweden while Axel Leonard Wenner-Gren made his fortune as head of the Electrolux brand. Mercury Press
Catering for all: The estate is currently being operated as a luxury hotel. Pictured left is one of the dining rooms and pictured right is one of the many artworks adorning the walls. Mercury Press