Advertising is the engine of trade, but staged videos do not always seem convincing. Therefore, automakers invite journalists and bloggers to cooperate, and sometimes they provide cars for a test drive to racers. They, like no one else, can professionally evaluate the dynamics and handling of a car in extreme conditions. In addition, the pilots themselves sometimes like to drive even outside the sports track, and some of them are happy to shoot videos. Interestingly, athletes are given not only powerful and fast models for review, but also SUVs and urban electric cars.
Daniel Ricciardo and Mclarren 765LT
The pilot of Formula 1 tested the British supercar. The model debuted two years ago and has become the most powerful car from the Longtail range. Now the car has been driven by an Australian driver from the McLaren F1 Team. The eight-time Grand Prix winner and GoPro brand ambassador was given a 765-horsepower two-door at the Willow Springs International Motorsports Park California track. The test drive was filmed from various angles: for example, you can see what is happening through the eyes of the driver.
Nico Rosberg and Mercedes-Benz Vision EQXX
The rider rode the concept, but only as a passenger. The model made its debut this year at the CES show in Las Vegas, and then it was brought to Monte Carlo for the Monaco Grand Prix. The electric car was shown to selected customers, including the 2016 champion as part of the Mercedes-AMG team.
After the end of his career, the ex-pilot became interested in environmentally friendly transport and filming videos: Rosberg combined both of these hobbies during a test drive of the novelty. The German was given a car for review, but an engineer of the company was driving. This did not stop the rider from appreciating the impressive acceleration, low center of gravity and modest mass of the electric vehicle. In general, Rosberg considered the car “very cool”, and he was especially struck by the interior: “We have a bamboo carpet, inserts on the seats from mushrooms, leather from cacti.”
Max Verstappen and Honda Civic Type R
The Formula 1 champion tested the new “hot” hatchback in Hungary. The car retained the architecture of its five-year-old predecessor and the supercharged two-liter K20C four-cylinder petrol, but became the most powerful performance in the entire history of the model: the engine produces 319 horsepower and 420 Nm, and works with a six-speed mechanics.
The company cooperates with the Oracle Red Bull Racing team (Austria), which is represented by the Dutch racer. The pilot spent a few free hours driving the novelty on the sports track.
Max Verstappen and Honda e Limited Edition
In the spring, the Formula 1 champion tested a special version of the Japanese electric car. Only 50 copies will be sold in the European market. In the UK, the novelty is 22 percent more expensive than the original hatchback, but there are no major changes: the list of innovations includes a dark red color scheme, special decor and 17-inch anthracite rims.
The electric motor produces 154 horsepower and 315 Nm, and a traction battery with a capacity of 35.5 kilowatt-hours provides a range of up to 210 kilometers. The car gave Verstappen reason to reflect on success. According to the athlete, one should always strive for more: “Of course, changes can be destructive, but it is courage that leads us forward.”
Lewis Hamilton and Ineos Grenadier
The racer tested the British SUV, which became the ideological successor of the Land Rover Defender, while the manufacturer of the classic model has nothing to do with the project. The pilot plays for the Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team, among the sponsors of which is the chemical company Ineos: for this reason, it was Hamilton who was invited for a test drive.
The athlete was accompanied by the head of the brand, Jim Ratcliffe. “I have truly enjoyed driving this car,” said Hamilton. “It’s very comfortable, given the huge potholes we’ve been tackling… I’m really surprised at how great the grip is.”
Lewis Hamilton and Nissan Skyline GT-R R34
The rider himself does not mind turning on the heat: he recently drove around Tokyo in a right-hand drive sports car. The seven-time Formula 1 champion drove sideways and nearly broke his gearbox. On ordinary streets, the pilot complied with the rules, and the controlled skid was filmed on a special site. However, the company that provided the sports car for rent criticized the athlete for such a ride. In addition, complaints may arise from the police.
Ken Block and Hyundai i20 WRC
The extreme rider swept through Los Angeles on a rally car. During the trip, he visited several interesting places, but in the end he decided that the rally car is quite suitable for the city.
According to the athlete, he drove the car on gravel through the forests for so long that he forgot about the admission of the car not only to rally tracks, but also to megacities with their traffic jams. “It’s pretty fun to take this race car to visit friends and drive around Los Angeles, where I’m from,” Block said.
Ken Block and the Audi RS Q e-tron
Thanks to cooperation with the German company, the racer got access to many of its most interesting models. For example, under the leadership of Matthias Ekström, he tested a prototype for the Dakar rally. The SUV was created by Audi Motorsport. The car has a carbon fiber body and a 680 horsepower hybrid setup: the RC8 2.0 TFSI petrol turbo engine from the Audi RS5 Turbo DTM car acts as a generator, feeding a 50 kilowatt-hour traction battery. On each axle there is an MGU motor-generator from the Audi e-tron FE07 from Formula E. An additional MGU recharges the battery while driving and regenerates braking energy.
Ken Block drove an SUV on the ice of a lake in Austria. “Riding the Audi RS Q e-tron has been a phenomenal experience, although the car is probably more comfortable in the desert than it is in the snow.” The rider thanked Matthias Ekström, who told him about all the features of the SUV. “A few minutes behind the wheel was enough to understand the beauty of this car.”
Ken Block and the Audi e-tron GT/Quattro A2
In the same place, the racer traveled on two models of the brand from different eras – a new electric car and a rally sports car for Group B. The classic model first entered the competition 42 years ago and competed until 1984.
This copy has been carefully restored, and Ken Block was the first person (after JP Performance) who got the opportunity to test the rally car. “A crazy moment that I will never forget,” the athlete said of the experience
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