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Rick Hendrick Pays $3 Million Instead of $59,995 for the First C8 Corvette

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Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale Auction sets the record with the auction of the first production 2020 Chevrolet C8 Corvette Stingray Coupe fetching $3 Million USD.
Rick Hendrick purchases Chevrolet Corvette C8 VIN 001 Barrett Jackson Auction 2020
A Black Chevrolet C8 Corvette is what Hendrick will eventually receive. Credit: Barrett-Jackson

Over the years the Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale Auction has become a destination for buyers seeking to own a first production vehicle. The yearly auction has a tradition of offering first editions of new performance cars for charity. On Saturday January 18, at the 49th annual event, the rights to own the first-ever retail 2020 Chevrolet C8 Corvette Stingray Coupe VIN #0001 (Lot #3007), donated by General Motors (GM), went up for grabs.

GM CEO, Marry Barra, welcomed a packed house as bidders vied for the chance to own the black-on-black C8 Corvette loaded with every available option. The Red version of the car at auction was just a placeholder for the black one (VIN #001) that was being bid on, with the first offer starting strong at $200,000 USD. The final price hammered in at $3 million and the money raised given to the Detroit Children’s Fund (DCF) – a non-profit that supports Detroit’s schools.

2020 Chevrolet C8 Corvette Stingray Coupe Interior
Interior spec render of a Chevrolet C8 Corvette Stingray Coupe. Credit: General Motors

“Reaction to the mid-engine Corvette was incredible,” said Barra, who was on the block to introduce the first production mid-engine Corvette. “It’s both humbling and exciting to harness that success and support the local community through the Detroit Children’s Fund.”

The lucky buyer was none other than Rick Hendrick, the collector and owner of NASCAR team Hendrick Motorsports, and co-owner of JR Motorsports, founder of the Hendrick Automotive Group and the Hendrick Marrow Program, who last year paid $2.5 million for a 2019 Ford GT Heritage Edition at the same auction.

“I am the number one Corvette junkie in the world,” said 70-year-old Hendrick in a press release from GM. “Thanks to Chevrolet and Barrett-Jackson, because they always pick charities that are so good and help so many people.”

Rick Hendrick with the $3 Million cheque  for the Detroit Children's fund
Rick Hendrick with the $3 Million cheque for the Detroit Children’s fund. Credit General Motors

Rick Hendrick received the keys from General Motors’ CEO, Mary Barra, at the completion of the auction. The VIN #0001 Chevrolet Corvette Hendrick will receive has the 3LT trim loaded with all available options. It will come with a black exterior, black seats with red trim, red seatbelts, GT2 seats, removable roof panel, and rear spoiler. There’s also a performance data recorder and Z51 performance package.

The 2020 C8 Corvette is markedly different to previous Corvettes with it being the first model to feature an engine behind the driver instead of under the hood. The new Corvette also recently won at the Oscars of the auto industry and was named the North American Car of the Year by a jury of automotive journalists.

The winning $3 Million bid entitles Hendrick the option of taking delivery of his new coupe at the Corvette plant in Bowling Green, Kentucky. He also gets a hosted tour at the Corvette Museum, a Letter of Authenticity, and a unique artwork.

Rick Hendrick also obtains artwork and memorabilia with the winning bid
Rick Hendrick also obtains artwork and other memorabilia with the winning bid. Credit: General Motors

“Charity vehicles are the soul of our auctions,” said Craig Jackson, chairman and CEO of Barrett-Jackson. “Supporting the community was the purpose of the first event my family helped create almost 50 years ago. Over the years, we’ve supported medical research, funded education initiatives and provided money for programs that champion our nation’s military heroes and first responders.

This year’s auction also saw a 1981 Jeep CJ7 Custom SUV (Lot #3001) sold and re-donated on the block three times for a total of $425,000 raised to benefit Make-A-Wish Foundation. Special guest 13-year-old Make-A-Wish recipient, Will Wade, fulfilled his wish by accompanying Craig Jackson on the block and hammering in the final sale of the Jeep.

1981 Jeep redonated multiple times at Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale Auction 2020
1981 Jeep re-donated multiple times at the auction. Credit: Barrett-Jackson

 “There’s not a group of people more united in the drive to eradicate sickness, improve education and support our nation’s veterans than the collector car community,” said Steve Davis, president of Barrett-Jackson. “We’re so honored to be trusted by the world’s top car companies and consignors to help carry their missions of helping others. We take our stewardship of these charity cars very seriously and we’re grateful to have played a part in raising over $7 million dollars for these extremely worthy causes during our 2020 Scottsdale Auction.”

“All children deserve great schools,” said Jack Elsey, DCF’s executive director. “The proceeds from this auction will help improve public education in Detroit and, as a result, give thousands of young Detroiters a brighter future. We cannot thank General Motors enough for their commitment to DCF and the children of Detroit.”

The 2020 Chevrolet C8 Corvette Stingray Coupe was also the most expensive charity car sold at the week-long auction.

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Geneva Motor Show 2020 Cancelled 3 Days Before Scheduled Event Opening

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In a huge blow for the event and attendees, the Geneva International Motor Show 2020 (GIMS) has been officially cancelled.
Geneva International Motor Show atmosphere
Geneva International Motor Show 2020 has been cancelled. Credit: GIMS Swiss

The 90th edition of GIMS was due to welcome media on Monday 2nd March 2020 and the general public from Thursday 5th – Sunday 15th March with approximately 500,000 attendees expected. However just 3 days before the scheduled opening the official announcement was made that the event had been cancelled with GIMS confirming there would be no rescheduling to another time in the year.

The Geneva International Motor Show stated that the cancellation was due to an injunction of the Federal Council of 28th February 2020 that no events with more than 1000 people are allowed to take place until 15th March 2020.

Czinger Vehicles commented on the Official GIMS Instagram account @gimsswiss stating “Very disappointingly. We know how committed you are to creating the best car show on earth and how much that goes into it, so we empathize with you a lot. Heart wrenching for us as well as this was going to be the big launch that we had planned for for a long long time. Sometimes things are beyond our control…”

With nearly half a million people having already planned to attend, and around 50% of those with flights and accommodation already paid for and secured, many have the difficult decision of whether they should continue traveling to Geneva and holiday or try to contact providers and check their cancellation options. The Geneva International Motor Show has committed to refunding all tickets purchased for the 2020 event.

Geneva International Motor Show 2020  cancelled official statement
GIMS 2020 cancellation official statement.

The GIMS official response via their press release and website home page stated….

The organizers accept this decision: “We regret this situation, but the health of all participants is our and our exhibitors’ top priority. This is a case of force majeure and a tremendous loss for the manufacturers who have invested massively in their presence in Geneva. However, we are convinced that they will understand this decision,” said Maurice Turrettini, Chairman of the Foundation Board. We would like to warmly thank all those involved in the organisation of the 2020 edition of GIMS.

A few days before the opening of the event, the construction of the stands was very nearly complete. A week ago, during the press conferences announcing the 2020 edition, there was nothing to suggest that such a measure was necessary. The situation changed with the appearance of the first confirmed coronavirus diseases in Switzerland and the injonction of the Federal Council on 28.02.2020. The event is cancelled due to this decision. In the meantime, the dismantling of the event will now have to be organised. The financial consequences for all those involved in the event are significant and will need to be assessed over the coming weeks. One thing is certain: tickets already purchased for the event will be refunded. The organisers will communicate about this as soon as possible, via their website.

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New Supercar Company by Next Gen Marc Philipp Gemballa

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Marc Philipp Gemballa, the son of late German auto tuner Uwe Gemballa, is building on his father’s auto legacy by starting a high performance car company.

A week out from this years Geneva Motor Show, Marc Philipp Gemballa the 26 year old son of legendary German auto tuner Uwe Gemballa, has announced his intentions to launch a brand new supercar company bearing his name “Marc Philipp Gemballa”.

The Next Generation of the Gemballa Family Name Marc Philipp Gemballa
The Next Generation of the Gemballa Family Name. Credit: Marc Philipp Gemballa

Revealing the announcement via social media, Marc revealed the fully funded project has been in development for almost two years and already has client orders.

Marc was also quick to note that while he will continue with the legacy of his father, this will not be the same tuning/body kit car brand and is an entirely new company, not to be confused with the currently operating Gemballa GmbH founded by his late father.

Marc Philipp Gemballa age 4, pictured with a Gemballa '911 in 1997
Marc Philipp Gemballa age 4, pictured with a Gemballa ‘911 in 1997. Credit: Marc Philipp Gemballa

While only a single teaser image has been provided, we do know the design is attributed to French car exterior designer Alan Derosier who has previously worked for brands like Chery, Faraday Future and Renault and was the project leader for the Porsche 908-04 concept car.

Other partners of the project include Michelin & BF Goodrich Tires (suppliers of heavy duty off-road/rally tires), German based KW Suspension (who actually test their suspension on the Nürburgring track) and Slovenian performance exhaust manufacturer Akrapovič.

Now all that remains is to wait for the big reveal this March at the Geneva International Motor Show held at the Palexpo Convention Centre.

Marc Philipp Gemballa uploaded a teaser of things to come
Marc Philipp Gemballa uploaded a teaser of things to come. Credit: Marc Philipp Gemballa

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Where the $2.2 Million Lotus EVIJA Will Be Produced

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The new Lotus manufacturing facility in Hethel, UK is now ready for the testing and full-scale production of the fully-electric Lotus Evija.
Lotus Evija EV hypercar production facility light tunnel
Lotus Evija EV hypercar production facility light tunnel. Credit: Lotus Cars
  • The newest car production facility in the world according to Lotus
  • Interior is illuminated by more than 30,000 LED’s
  • All 130 examples of the $2.2 Million EV hypercar will be produced here

When the new fully-electric two seat Lotus Evija was announced in July last year, work was already underway to complete the new production facility where the EV hypercar would see its final testing and full scale production take place.

Lotus have now revealed the assembly hall is ready and some of the first examples to roll off the production line will be rolled out next door to undergo further testing on Lotus’ notable 2.2-mile circuit which has hosted testing and shake-down sessions with many Formula 1 legends such as Ayrton Senna, Emerson Fittipaldi, Jim Clark and others.

The new workspace will see Lotus hand-build up to 130 examples of the Evija with full-scale production expected to commence soon in the second half of 2020.

Phil Popham, the Lotus Cars CEO spoke to his 1400 employees and stated “With our new factory ready, we are ahead of the pack in the emerging EV hypercar segment and 100% ready for some healthy competition.”

Commenting on the new milestone for Lotus, Phil went on further to say “This is now the newest car production facility in the world, and to witness it move from the drawing board to reality has been deeply satisfying. It’s testament to the commitment of all involved, and is the perfect sleek and high-tech production home for the Evija at our iconic Hethel headquarters.”

Lotus Evija EV hypercar production facility gantry and crane
Gantries on 3 sides with an overhead crane. Credit: Lotus Cars
Lotus Evija EV hypercar production facility vehicle lift
One of the Evija production facility’s vehicle lifts. Credit: Lotus Cars

30,000 of the latest high-density, low-energy LEDs will shower the build hall that contains gantries on three sides, an overhead gantry crane, multiple vehicle lifts and a wheel alignment ramp. Lotus have also included a state-of-the-art light tunnel where rigorous final inspections take place before each Lotus Evija is driven out directly on to the test track for dynamic validation.

The last six months has reportedly seen the project involve the co-ordination of 20 specialist contractors and more than 50 experts.

Lotus Evija EV hypercar to be hand built at the production facility
Some of the Lotus Evija will be hand built. Credit: Lotus Cars
Lotus Evija EV hypercar to be hand built at the production facility
Every element of the Evija will be meticulously analysed and validated. Credit: Lotus Cars

Lotus Evija Specs

*Note these are target specifications

  • Name: Lotus Evija (Type 130)
  • Powertrain: Pure electric, 4WD
  • Power: The target is to be the most powerful production car in the world, at 2,000 PS
  • Battery power:  70 kw/h / 2,000 kW
  • Torque: 1,700 Nm with torque vectoring
  • 0-100 km/h (0-62 mph): Under three seconds
  • 0-300 km/h (0-186 mph): Under nine seconds
  • Max speed: In excess of 200 mph (320 km/h)
  • All-electric range (WLTP Combined): 250 miles (400 km)
  • Charging time (350kW charger): 18 mins
  • Weight: 1,680 kg
  • Production run: Maximum of 130 cars
  • Overall dimensions (L/W/H): 4,459 / 2,000 / 1,122 mm
  • Price: From £1.7m + duties and taxes Reservation process – £250k deposit secures a production slot
Lotus Evija EV hypercar interior
The Lotus Evija EV hypercar interior. Credit: Lotus Cars

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