Car Collection

Check out the supercars inside Houston Astros ace Justin Verlander's garage

Huston Astros pitching ace Justin Verlander has an impressive car collection.

Photo by Getty Images

Houston Astros pitcher Justin Verlander has a thing for baseball, Kate Upton, his daughter, and cars. A quick scroll through his Instagram feed shows pictures of little else. And there's nothing wrong with that.

Among his collection, past and present, is a Ford GT, a replica of the 1967 Ford Mustang Fastback Eleanor, Lamborghini Aventador Roadster, Ferrari California, Ferrari 458 Italia, a Maserati Gran Turismo, a Mercedes-Benz SL55, Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG, Audi R8, BMW M760i, and an Aston Martin DBS.

In January, Verlander told MLive.com, "I always envisioned having a collection if I made it and got to that point," Verlander said. "It was always a dream of mine. And I would say I have a pretty decent collection now."

Second-Generation Ford GT

Verlander's Ford GT is one of one, a custom-made creation with lightning fast speed, planted performance, and sleek lines. The model debuted in 2016 and deliveries began in 2017. The Ford GT is powered by a EcoBoost 3.5-liter V6 that employs 647 horsepower and 550 pound-feet of torque to get its 3,300-ish pound body moving.

1967 Ford Mustang Fastback Eleanor

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🖤😈🖤
A post shared by Justin Verlander (@justinverlander) on Jan 28, 2019 at 3:07pm PST

The Eleanor Mustang, as its affectionately called, is the car Nicolas Cage drove in "Gone in 60 Seconds." The production company built 11 of them for the movie but only three were used in driving scenes. Those three are the only fully functioning models.

Verlander got his with help from Fusion Motor Company about 19 months ago. The replica of a Mustang Eleanor has a starting price of $189,000 and tops out near $285,000. The car is officially licensed by Ford Motor Company and models are still available for purchase.

Lamborghini Aventador Roadster

Verlander clearly has a penchant for powerful cars and the Lamborghini in his collection is no exception. Powered by a naturally aspirated 6.5-liter V12 engine the open-top model has typically beefy Lambo lines and an aerospace-inspired interior.

Ferrari California T

There have been two generations of the Ferrari California with the second (2015-2018) being the sexier and more desirable. The second-gen is powered by a 3.8-liter twin-turbo V8 that gets 553 horsepower and 557 pound-feet of torque. It's only 60 percent as heavy as the Ford GT, with nearly as much oomph. According to Verlander, his wife chose the specs on this one.

Ferrari 458 GTB

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#sundayfunday #sundaydrive #ferrari
A post shared by Justin Verlander (@justinverlander) on Mar 19, 2017 at 2:55pm PDT

The smile on the Ferrari 458 Italia is like that on the Cheshire Cat. Its soft and subtle supercar lines are of a bygone design area despite the fact that the car was produced starting in 2011 and running through 2016. The predecessor to the Ferrari 488 was available new in a traditional format or in several special editions. Power comes from its 4.5-liter V8, which achieves 562 horsepower and 398 pound-feet of torque.

Ferrari 488 Pista

About a year ago, Verlander teased a Ferrari 488 Pista he touted as being on order. The model features the most powerful Ferrari V8 ever made, which gets it from zero to 100 km/h in 2.8 seconds. It has Formula 1-inspired ducts and a massive rear spoiler. Certain components are made of carbon fiber including the engine cover, bumper, and rear spoiler.

Astin Martin DBS

The Aston Marketing DBS was made through 2012. It came standard with a V12 engine that was paired with either a standard six-speed manual or an available six-speed automatic transmission. The only 3,400 units of the 510-horsepower model were built.

Audi R8

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Game day! Which one?? #488 #r8
A post shared by Justin Verlander (@justinverlander) on Mar 7, 2017 at 7:08am PST

Sold starting in 2006, the Audi R8 is a coupe that sports the automaker's permanent all-wheel drive system. It was originally based on the Lamborghini Gallardo platform. When it was new, the R8 was the first production car with full-LED headlights, something that is commonly available on most mass market models today.

BMW M760i

This luxury large sedan is massive in its size and power. Up until 2019, it was one of the few remaining models that housed a V12 engine under its hood. The car is mostly steel but there are key aluminum elements like the hood, trunk, and door skins. With the V12 it can hit 601 horsepower and 590 pound-feet of torque.

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Lincoln will not make a performance variant to compete with Cadillac.

Lincoln

TheLincoln Navigator and Cadillac Escalade have been duking it out at the top of luxury SUV rankings for decades, but there’s one area of the Caddy’s development that Lincoln won’t touch. In a recent interview, a company executive told Ford Authority that it has no plans to create a performance variant of the Navigator to compete with the upcoming Escalade V from Cadillac.

2022 Lincoln NavigatorThe new Navigator features several upscale touches and excellent tech. Lincoln

That means the Navigator will stick with the powertrain it’s carried for years, which is a twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter EcoBoost engine that makes 440 horsepower and 510 pound-feet of torque. It’s paired with a smooth ten-speed automatic and either rear- or four-wheel drive. While there’s more than enough power to get the hulking Lincoln moving, it’s not a powertrain that inspires excitement or engagement, and though beefy, it’s tuned much more for comfort and quietness than drama.

Though more than adequate, those specs are a far cry from the numbers we expect from the Escalade V. The full-size bruiser from Cadillac is expected to get a supercharged 6.2-liter V8, similar to the unit seen in the CT5-V Blackwing and Chevrolet Camaro ZL1. We don’t know power numbers yet, but the engine should deliver horsepower and torque numbers in the high 600s.

Cadillac Escalade VThe Escalade V will be massively powerful. Cadillac

That Lincoln is taking a different approach isn’t surprising. The automaker has already announced its intention to go all-electric, so pouring more time and resources into creating a performance gas-powered SUV isn’t in line with its goals. Company executives have also expressed a desire to avoid imitating rivals, so the decision to leave a performance Navigator behind is not surprising.

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New performance sedan

2023 Mercedes-AMG C 43 on the way with F1 tech

The new C 43 gets engine tech straight from Formula 1.

Mercedes-AMG

It's about time we started considering Mercedes-AMG's 43-level cars in some of the same conversations that include the 53- and 63-level monsters. Today, Mercedes-AMG announced the 2023 C 43 Sedan. But even though it's the "entry-level" C-Class performance car, AMG gave it some serious upgrades, including standard rear-wheel steering, a mild-hybrid system, and plenty of power.

2023 Mercedes-AMG C 43 SedanRear-wheel steering is standard, as is adaptive suspension. Mercedes-AMG

The new turbocharged four-cylinder engine makes 402 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque - up from last year's 385 ponies. It's paired with a 48-volt mild-hybrid system, a nine-speed automatic transmission, and rear-biased all-wheel drive. Mercedes says the powertrain is strong enough to propel the C43 to 60 mph from a standstill in just 4.6 seconds.

The four-cylinder is the first production engine with an electric exhaust-gas turbocharger. The tech came directly from the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula 1 Team, who won the 2021 Constructor's Championship. Where traditional turbochargers have to build boost over a short period of time, an electric motor spins the turbo to start before allowing the exhaust gases to take over. The system is driven by the car's 48-volt mild-hybrid system and should reduce turbo lag and improve responsiveness.

2023 Mercedes-AMG C 43 SedanThe car's electric turbocharger is a first in a production car. Mercedes-AMG

Five driving modes are available, including Slippery, Comfort, Sport, Sport +, and Individual. The drive modes alter throttle and steering response, transmission shift points, exhaust sound, and settings for the adaptive dampers. Shockingly, the car comes standard with rear-wheel steering with an angle of up to 2.5 degrees. The system works at speeds of up to 37 mph, and can drastically reduce the C 43's turning radius while improving turn-in and handling.

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