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Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorano comes from the brand’s noblest breed, the V12-powered grand tourers. Not all GTs are created equal though. Starting from 1960 and the 250 GT/E, Ferrari’s grand tourers went two distinct ways, the mellow but potent 2+2 coupés and Berlinettas, distilled, focused and competitive 2-seaters.

The Ferrari 599 is the latter, and goodness gracious it is. There’s no doubt that the 599 is a brilliant machine, but how brilliant is it really? The short answer is very. For the long answer, let’s dive deeper into this bit of modern Ferrari history to find out why it is so!

Ferrari 599 GTB Background and Development

Under pressure from Ferrucio Lamborghini and the Miura, Enzo Ferrari was convinced by his close associates to give the company’s flagship a thorough makeover through developing a mid-engined car.

By spreading the Colombo V12 to 180° and moving it mid-rear, Ferrari replaced the Daytona with a chimaera of a sports car and a grand tourer, a car that could offer sublime performance and sufficient comfort, something Lamborghini seriously lacked upon introducing the notoriously impractical Countach.

The first iteration of this new concept, the BB Series, didn’t record any particular sales success as it wasn’t even exported to the United States. Its successor though, the Testarossa, became a legend in its own right and a centerpiece of 1980s iconography. As it turned out, the Testarossa also marked the end for the mid-engined flat-12 experiment since Luca Cordero di Montezemolo steered Berlinettas back to the classic front-engined layout with the 550 Maranello and 575M, both powered by an all-new F133 V12.

Just as the F430 was a big leap for Ferrari’s mid-engined family, the successor to the 575M was seen as a trailblazer for the new generation of Berlinettas as well, and as such it borrowed the best technology from Ferrari’s era-defining Enzo and a thoroughly redefined 2+2 GT, the 612 Scaglietti.

Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorano interior detail.

Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorano interior detail.

The all-new, modern Ferrari Berlinetta for the 21st century debuted at the 2006 Geneva Motor Show. Its factory code was Tipo F141, but it’s better known to the public as the 599 GTB Fiorano. In line with Ferrari’s nomenclature, the 599 signified the car’s 5,999cm3 engine displacement, the GTB initials stood for Gran Turismo Berlinetta, while Fiorano referred to Ferrari’s test track in Maranello.

Very soon, the 599 GTB met universal appraise for its versatility in performing as both a grand tourer and a front-engined supercar. It came with a sticker price of around $300,000, but the demand outweighed the supply, shooting up the price tens of thousands of dollars upwards. So, let’s see what exactly flocked sports car connoisseurs towards this Berlinetta.

Ferrari 599 GTB Chassis and Body

The first time for a V12 Berlinetta, the skeleton of the 599 was an aluminum spaceframe rather than steel tubular frame. The chassis was closely related to the design used on the 612 Scaglietti and was also developed by Alcoa. The aluminum spaceframe design allowed the 599 to have increased wheelbase and length compared to the 575M, all without compromising structural rigidity, thus the car’s overall performance, while also being 132 lb lighter than its predecessor, with the total weight being 3,950 lb.

Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorano front.

Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorano front.

The body of the 599 was designed to complete the V12 lineup alongside the 612 Scaglietti 2+2 coupé. Yet unlike the 612 which paid a tribute to Sergio Scaglietti’s very particular 1954 375 MM built for Ingrid Bergman, Jason Castriota’s 599 GTB Fiorano was very much rooted in the present.

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By: Djordje Sugaris
Title: In-Depth: Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorano
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Published Date: Sat, 18 Sep 2021 09:11:06 +0000

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2024 Honda XR650L Dual Sport Preview


American Honda maintains its venerable XR650L into 2024, with no notable changes to the stalwart platform. It will remain priced at $6,999 and will only be available in the white color scheme shown below.

“A motorcycle of legendary status, the XR650L continues to stand the test of time, thanks in part to its simple, no-frills design and relentless dependability,” American Honda says in its official press release. “Backed by an incredible record of success in Baja, this dual-sport icon has amassed a loyal following of enthusiasts around the globe since its introduction in 1993.

The 2024 Honda XR650L will remain priced at $6,999.
The 2024 Honda XR650L will remain priced at $6,999. (Honda/)

Related: 1993 – 2007 Honda XR650L | Smart Money

As is evident by the longevity of other dual sport motorcycles, like the KLR650 and DR650S, big single-cylinder machines continue to have appeal. The XR650L is no exception in this case, but it does now stand as one of the most simple of the bunch mechanically, now that Kawasaki has finally given in to fuel injection.

The 644cc mill is air-cooled, features a 42.5 diaphragm-type CV carburetor, and puts power to the ground by way of a five-speed transmission. The bike is ready for some hard time off-road too thanks to the sealed battery, dry-sump design, black spoked rims, and long-travel suspension.

The suspension is actually one area where the XR650L shines among its closest competitors, offering effective Showa kit front and rear. The long-travel, air-adjustable fork has 16-position compression damping and gives riders up to 11.6 inches of travel. The Showa shock comes with spring-preload, 20-position compression, and 20-position rebound-damping adjustability and 11 inches of travel. These specs outshine those of both the Kawi and Suzuki.

Its price tag is also one of the most competitive of the small group of largely-untouched-so-are-now-retro-cool dual sports, beating out the Suzuki and pricing just $100 above the standard trim and S-level KLRs.

2024 Honda XR650L Dual Sport Technical Specifications and Price

Price:$6,999Engine:644cc, SOHC, air-cooled single; 4-valveBore x Stroke:100.0 x 82.0mmCompression Ratio:8.3:1Fuel Delivery:42.5mm diaphragm-type CV carburetorClutch:Wet, multiplate slipper/assistTransmission/Final Drive:5-speed/chainFrame:Semi-double cradle steelFront Suspension:43mm air-adjustable axle Showa cartridge fork, compression damping adjustable; 11.6 in. travelRear Suspension:Pro-Link Showa shock, spring-preload, compression and rebound damping adjustable; 11.0 in. travelFront Brake:2-piston caliper, 256mm discRear Brake:220mm discWheels, Front/Rear:Spoked rims; 21 in. / 18 in.Tires, Front/Rear:21×3.00 / 18×4.60Rake/Trail:27.0°/4.0 in.Wheelbase:57.3 in.Seat Height:37.0 in.Fuel Capacity:2.8 gal.Claimed Curb Weight:346 lb.Available:March

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By: Byron Wilson
Title: 2024 Honda XR650L Dual Sport Preview
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Published Date: Mon, 04 Mar 2024 11:00:01 +0000

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Speed Read: A razor-sharp BMW R1300GS from Switzerland and more

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The latest custom motorcycles and bike news.
The Swiss maestros at VTR Customs deliver the first custom BMW R1300GS that we’ve seen, while Radical Speedshop builds a bespoke Moto Guzzi café racer like no other. We also look at a tidy Yamaha XT500 restomod and a stunning 1949 Triumph Speed Twin bobber.

BMW R1300GS by VTR Customs
BMW R1300GS by VTR Customs When BMW announced its new flagship adventure motorcycle, the BMW R1300GS, we knew it was only a matter of time before we saw it customized. Thanks to Switzerland’s VTR Customs, we didn’t have to wait too long.

Big adventure-style bikes with go-fast bits are all the rage right now. Machines like the Ducati Multistrada V4 RS and BMS M1000XR are primed for riders who want adventure bike ergonomics in a performance-orientated road-going package. This is probably what inspired the mad scientists at VTR Customs.

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By: Ben Pilatti
Title: Speed Read: A razor-sharp BMW R1300GS from Switzerland and more
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Published Date: Sun, 03 Mar 2024 19:12:35 +0000

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Audi Tops the Luxury Car Safety Charts in 2023

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Safety is becoming more important to luxury car buyers. Wealthy individuals want vehicles that will protect themselves and their passengers.

However, it isn’t always clear which brand offers the best safety profile. Now, though, figures from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reveal a winner – the German automaker Audi.

The NHTSA looked at the rate of crashes per 1,000 drivers and found that Audi had a crash rate of just 0.54, putting it below tech leader Mercedes at 0.55 and far from Subaru which was up at 0.75.

The question on many people’s lips is why Audi is so safe. After all, Mercedes is the manufacturer that tends to bring the latest safety technology to market first.

The main reason appears to be the brand’s heavy investment in safety technology in recent years. The company conducts significant research and development in-house, allowing it to bring technologies to market at a lower price point than its rivals. Drivers benefit from comprehensive safety features across the range instead of solely on high-end models.

re Advanced Safety Features Necessary?

Previously, skeptics scoffed at the value of advanced car safety features, calling them gimmicky. However, the evidence suggests that it is effective, especially in recent years. Advanced driver assistance systems are finally coming of age and having a noticeable impact on the number of insurance claims. Data from LexisNexis Risk Solutions suggests that bodily injury claims are 27 percent lower with these systems, and property damage claims are 19 percent lower. 

These statistics are good news for drivers. It means that they can expect statistically different outcomes driving Audi vehicles than conventional cars. It represents a genuine upgrade. 

Car accident attorney Adam S. Kutcher is at the forefront of the consequences of vehicle collisions. The lawyer has tremendous knowledge of how vehicle accidents can cause harm.

“The people that come to us are real people who are often going through the most challenging time in their life,” he says. “People worry about who will pay their medical bills and lost wages, even if insurers agree to pay to replace vehicles. That’s why this new technology is so exciting for everyone who practices in this area. We don’t want to see people getting hurt. Instead, we want to make sure everyone stays safe and that as many people avoid this harrowing experience as possible.”

Currently, tort law is helpful to victims of car accidents through additional provisions in the legal code. But the reality is that many people never recover from their injuries and can’t go back to work, regardless of the medical care they receive.

“We can sometimes get big rewards for people seriously injured in car accidents, but financial compensation is only ever partial,” says Kutcher. “Money can’t fix a disability or even a tragic death in the family for an auto accident. That’s why car manufacturers are stepping up to the plate and investing in this technology.”

The Components Of Advanced Driver Safety Systems

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Advanced driver safety systems refer to a plethora of technologies car manufacturers are including in their vehicles thanks to advances in software and chip technology.

Automatic emergency braking is one of the most coveted features. Vehicles can now brake independently of drivers if they believe a crash is imminent, preventing rear-end shunts and jackknifes at interchanges.

Manufacturers have gradually increased the range of situations in which this technology will activate over recent years. Previously, it was solely to stop drivers from bumping into the car ahead, but now cameras can detect cross-traffic, even when reversing, and

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By: Wilson Lim
Title: Audi Tops the Luxury Car Safety Charts in 2023
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Published Date: Mon, 30 Oct 2023 07:56:16 +0000

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