Paul di Resta returns to DTM with Mercedes

DTM champion Paul Di Resta back in Mercedes-Benz DTM cockpit
Stuttgart, Jan 21, 2014

– 2010 DTM champion Paul Di Resta returns to DTM for 2014 season with Mercedes-Benz
– Mercedes-Benz will have two former DTM champions in line-up – Di Resta and Gary Paffett
– First test outing for Di Resta in DTM Mercedes AMG C-Coupé on Tuesday 21st January in Portimão
– Di Resta: “I’m hungry for success”

Mercedes-Benz will field two former DTM champions in the new 2014 DTM season. In addition to 2005 DTM champion, Gary Paffett (32, England, EURONICS Mercedes AMG C-Coupé), 2010 DTM champion Paul Di Resta (27, Scotland) will also drive a DTM Mercedes AMG C-Coupé in the coming season. The Scot will strengthen the squad of drivers at Mercedes-Benz, as Daimler prepares to mark its 120th anniversary of competition in motor racing this year in fine style.

Di Resta previously competed in the world’s most popular international touring car series for the brand with the three-pointed star from 2007 to 2010, securing six wins, six pole positions and seven fastest laps from 42 races. After clinching the DTM title at the season finale in Shanghai in 2010, Di Resta switched to Formula 1, where he contested 58 grands prix for Sahara Force India Mercedes (2011-2013), scoring 121 championship points.

Di Resta and Mercedes-Benz go back a long way – the Scot won the McLaren Mercedes Champions of the Future Kart series in 2000. He became a Mercedes-Benz junior four years later, moving up in 2005 to the Formula 3 Euro Series, which he won with the Mercedes-Benz Formula 3 engine in his second season, beating off competition from four-time Formula 1 world championship title holder, Sebastian Vettel.

Di Resta, along with fellow Mercedes-Benz driver Gary Paffett, is one of seven former DTM champions, who have so far confirmed their participation in the 2014 DTM season. During testing in Portimão on Tuesday, Di Resta will take to the wheel of a DTM Mercedes AMG C-Coupé to begin preparing for the DTM season opener in Hockenheim on the weekend of 3rd-4th May 2014.

Paul Di Resta: “It feels really good to be back in the DTM and to see so many familiar faces again. The DTM is a fantastic racing series with three strong premium brands, a very competitive field and a very evenly matched bunch of drivers. I’m really looking forward to working with the whole Mercedes-Benz DTM team and being part of another championship challenge. Much has changed since my last DTM race in Shanghai in 2010 with new cars, a new set of rules and a third manufacturer, but what has not changed is my enormous appetite for success. Mercedes-Benz has given me a car that I can use to fight for wins and the title. However, I realise that it will not be easy. My competitors already have two years of experience with the new generation of vehicles, but, starting with today’s first test, I’ll be going flat out in order to be capable of winning at the Hockenheim season opener in early May.”

Toto Wolff, Mercedes-Benz Motorsport: “Paul Di Resta has been a member of the Mercedes-Benz family for many years, and we are delighted that he is returning to the fold this season to further strengthen our DTM squad. Paul has learned a lot during the past few years in Formula 1, and, together with Gary Paffett we now have two experienced drivers in our team, who have already won the DTM title with Mercedes-Benz and can put their knowledge to good use on the track, whilst passing on hints and tips to our Mercedes juniors.”

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$8.8m ’58 Ferrari 250 GT California Spider highlights RM’s Arizona auction

1958 FERRARI 250 GT LWB CALIFORNIA SPIDER SETS NEW ARIZONA AUCTION RECORD AT RM’S $45.5 MILLION TWO-DAY SALE

– RM Auctions 15th annual Arizona sale generates more than $45.5 million in sales with 85 percent of all lots sold
– Two-day sale features exceptional offering of 125 automobiles, one boat and one motorcycle
– Ten automobiles achieve million-dollar plus results with multiple new auction records set
– Top-seller: 1958 Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spider sells for an outstanding $8,800,000
– Full results are now available online at www.rmauctions.com
– RM continues its 2014 auction calendar with its debut sale in Paris, France, February 5 during the world famous Retromobile week

PHOENIX, Arizona (January 18, 2014) – RM Auctions, the world’s largest collector car auction house for investment-quality automobiles, kicked off its 2014 auction season on a fantastic note once again this week, realizing an impressive $45,563,450 million in sales* with 85 percent of all lots sold at its 15th annual Phoenix, Arizona sale.

Within a beautiful setting and stunning presentation at the Arizona Biltmore Resort & Spa, the results represent a new high for the international auction house in Arizona. The two-day sale saw ten million-dollar-plus transactions and numerous auction records set, headlined by the top-selling 1958 Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spider. Reflecting RM’s international clientele and the global appeal of the well-established event, bidders hailed from 20 countries around the world.

“RM Auctions continues to prove that the combination of great cars, knowledgeable clients and a beautiful auction venue is a winning formula for both buyers and sellers,” says Ian Kelleher, Car Specialist, RM Auctions. “This year’s two-day sale was an unqualified success and set a terrific benchmark for the entire Arizona auction week, not to mention a fantastic start for the 2014 auction season.”

Top sale honors went to the highly desirable 1958 Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spider, chassis 1055 GT with coachwork by Scaglietti, selling for an incredible $8,800,000 before a packed auction room, making it the most valuable car ever sold in Arizona auction week history. The 11th of only 50 long-wheelbase California Spiders ever built, 1055 GT goes to its new owner in remarkably well-preserved condition. Continuing RM’s outstanding track record for the sale of important Ferraris at auction, additional Ferrari highlights from the two-day sale include: the beautifully restored 1963 Ferrari 250 GT/L ‘Lusso’, chassis 5215 GT, which sold for $2,447,500, setting a new record for the model at public auction; a wonderfully preserved 1966 Ferrari 275 GTB, chassis 8349, which sold for $1,815,000; and a 1966 Ferrari 275 GTS, chassis 08353, which sold for $1,485,000.

Additional impressive million-dollar-plus sales include the brilliantly restored, ex-Bob Donner and Don Wester 1961 Porsche 718 RS 61 Spyder, taking the number two spot at $2,750,000. Representing the diverse roster of automobiles, a 1930 Duesenberg Model J ‘Disappearing Top’ Convertible Coupe, offered for public sale for the first time since new, sold for a fantastic $2,200,000.

RM Arizona 2014 – Top Ten Sales:

1. Lot 112
1958 Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spider
$8,800,000.00

2. Lot 51
1961 Porsche 718 RS 61 Spyder
$2,750,000.00

3. Lot 89
1963 Ferrari 250 GT/L ‘Lusso’
$2,447,500.00

4. Lot 22
1930 Duesenberg Model J ‘Disappearing Top’ Convertible Coupe
$2,200,000.00

5. Lot 100
1966 Ferrari 275 GTB
$1,815,000.00

6. Lot 104
1995 Ferrari F50
$1,650,000.00

7. Lot 110
1966 Ferrari 275 GTS
$1,485,000.00

8. Lot 83
1956 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Gullwing
$1,292,500.00

9. Lot 99
1935 Hispano-Suiza J12 Cabriolet deVille
$1,045,000.00

10. Lot 20
1958 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Roadster
$1,045,000.00

Further notable sales from the Arizona auction include:
Lot 21 – 1958 Bentley S1 Continental Coupe – $511,500 (Record for a Bentley S1 Continental at public auction)
Lot 18 – 1970 Mercedes-Benz 280 SL ‘Pagoda’ – $165,000 (Record for a Mercedes-Benz 280SL at public auction)
Lot 43 – 1986 Toyota Celica IMSA GTO – $242,000
Lot 88 – 1961 Bentley S2 Continental ‘Flying Spur’ – $297,000 (Record for a Bentley S2 Continental ‘Flying Spur’ at auction)

RM Auctions continues its exciting 2014 calendar with its debut sale in Paris, France, February 5 at Place Vauban. Held during the world famous Retromobile motoring week, the sale will present a spectacular selection of more than 50 automobiles from all sectors of the collector car market. The Paris sale is closely followed by RM’s 16th annual Amelia Island, Florida sale, March 8, the official auction of the renowned Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance.

Full results from RM’s Arizona sale along with details on upcoming events are available online at www.rmauctions.com.

*Please note, results are in USD and are inclusive of a 10 percent buyer’s premium on automobiles and 15 percent on all other lots.

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Leno, Seinfeld and a Porsche 356/2 featured in latest CICGC

Jerry Seinfeld and Jay Leno star in the latest episode of Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee

In the latest kaffeeklatsch known as Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, Jerry Seinfeld pulls Jay Leno out of his garage for a trip to Jones Coffee in Pasadena, CA. The NBC funnyman we’ve lately seen driving two guest Porsches in his eponymous garage this time takes the passenger seat in a 1949 Porsche 356/2, one of early all-aluminum, hand-built coupes – still in 100-percent original condition – built in Gmund, Austria and nicknamed “Gmunds.”

The comedy veterans have known one another for 35 years, so the episode is rich with stories of The Good Old Days. Leno says it is also the first time he’s ever had a cup of coffee, and for obvious comedic reasons they start with the civet-stained beans made famous in The Bucket List. You can watch Leno take his first sip below, and have you haven’t heard the joke about the goat and the anvil, scroll on down for a listen to that and one or two more jokes besides.

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Barrett-Jackson 2014: Michael Schumacher’s 1998 Ferrari F300 earns round of applause, $1.7M bid [w/video]

1998 Ferrari F300

There isn’t much in the world that can aurally match the screeching wail of a Formula 1 car at redline. We obviously can’t say whether or not the showmanship of starting this 1998 Ferrari F300 in front of the assembled masses at Barrett-Jackson and slowly taking it up to its 18,000-rpm redline had any effect on bidders, but it did, at the very least, result in a round of applause.

This ’98 Ferrari F300 was driven 38 times by Michael Schumacher, and there was another round of applause for the driver, who’s currently in a medically induced coma and listed in stable condition after a skiing accident. This particular example is number three of nine total built for the ’98 season. Power comes from a 3.0-liter V10 engine producing 805 horsepower at 17,500 rpm.

After it was all said and done, bidding ended at $1.7 million (plus another 10 percent in fees). Check out our live images from the auction floor above, and scroll down below for a spine-tinglingly loud auction video and to read its official description.

Car chasis no. 183. 805bhp, 2,997cc DOHC V10 engine, 7-speed button-shift transmission, independent front and rear push rod activated torsion arm suspension and 4-wheel ventilated carbon-ceramic composite disc brakes. Wheelbase: 116.25″. The precursor to Ferrari’s millennial F1 dominance. On January 7, 1998 Ferrari debuted a car that would change the company’s racing future in Maranello, Italy. It is arguably one of the most important cars in Ferrari F1 race history. The 1998 Ferrari F300 played a crucial role in the Italian car company’s return to dominance in F1 racing, setting up legendary driver Michael Schumacher to win five world championships. Driven 38 times around the world by Schumacher, this third chassis off the assembly line of nine total F300s (Chassis number 183) is widely credited as one of the most important of the principle test cars during early proving sessions. It is no coincidence that Ferrari had six consecutive winning seasons after the introduction of this car. It should be noted that Schumacher won six races and had 11 total podiums in 1998 alone. It is a rare occasion when such an important piece of racing history, a truly pivotal chapter in Ferrari’s dominance in the F1 sport, is offered for sale at auction. What made this car special was its novel aerodynamic design approach which, in the years to come, would ensure Ferrari’s superiority over its rivals. This chassis 183 F300 met those demands. Powering this car was the new Tipo 047, a V10 engine with opposing cylinders set at an 80-degree angle and capable of 805hp @ 17,500rpm. In 2011, it was once again invited to take part in Ferrari F1 Clienti events in Mugello in April followed by an appearance at Imola in June and then at the Ferrari Finals in November. The car is in pristine condition. It is worthy of being displayed in the Smithsonian, toured with world-class events, donated to charitable causes, kept in private collections or driven with the Ferrari F1 Clienti Program. Accompanied by its Classiche certificate and Ferrari documents showing the car was driven by Michael Schumacher 38 times, this car has been fully restored by Ferrari and is eligible for a number of historic events. As an actual verified Ferrari that has been piloted by seven-time World Champion Michael Schumacher. We believe the 1998 F300 Chassis 183 was an integral part in re-establishing Scuderia Ferrari’s dominance in Formula 1 racing. Michael Schumacher’s five championships with Ferrari began with the time he spent driving this car.

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Barrett-Jackson 2014: Simon Cowell’s 2008 Bugatti Veyron is a $1.375M certified pre-owned car [w/video]

Simon Cowell's Bugatti Veyron

For a man who’s best known for being mean to aspiring singers, Simon Cowell sure seems to garner lots of attention. While Cowell himself didn’t make an appearance at Barrett-Jackson, his black on black Bugatti Veyron did, and bidding on it ended with a final sale price of $1.375 million.

Somewhat interestingly, this is the first certified pre-owned Bugatti sold through a new factory program. It includes a full one-year warranty, which must give its new owner some comfort. According to the auction company, Cowell has put 1,300 miles on this particular Veyron. See for yourself in our high-res image gallery above, and scroll down below for a video showing the live auction and the official auction description.

Details

Simon Cowell’s pristine 2008 Bugatti Veyron 16.4 which he purchased new at Bugatti Beverly Hills. Mr. Cowell’s Veyron is the first certified, pre-owned vehicle in the new program being offered by Bugatti. The vehicle includes a full one-year, extended factory warranty offered directly through Bugatti. Four brand new tires and a complete service make Mr. Cowell’s Veyron the perfect certified pre-owned vehicle. The Veyron has 1,300 actual miles most of which were personally driven by Simon Cowell himself. The custom black paint with black interior is one of only a handful of black on black Veyrons in America. Over 1,000hp at 6000rpm the 8.0 Liter W16 Cylinder, all-wheel drive, 7-speed automated dual clutch transmission made this car in 2008 the fastest street legal car in America with a top speed of 253.81mph.

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