London Concours 2020

Do you remember these six lost marques?

The Unipower GT is just one of the "Lost Marques" that will be shown off at the annual London Concours in August.

Photo courtesy of London Concours

Car brands come and go. It was more common in the mid-20th Century when mergers and acquisitions swapped properties across the Detroit, England, and Italy carscape on the regular.

This year's London Concours will celebrate the lost marques of car culture, with 12 unique models going on display. The event is previewing six of them ahead of the event. Scroll down and see if you remember them.

Facel Vega HK500

Facel started building cars when its owner, Jean Daninos wanted to create a car that embodied French elegance and craftmanship with American flair in the body of a grand tourer during the 1950s and 60s. The HK500 is one of 500 ever produced from 1959 to 1961 and powered by a 361 cubic inch Chrysler Hemi V8, allowing drivers to easily surpass 100mph. Owners, many of whom were celebrities, were offered two gearbox options: the Chrysler automatic transmission or a French four-speed manual.

Bizzarrini P538

Bizzarrini P538

Photo courtesy of London Concours

Giotto Bizzarrini started off as a test driver for Alfa Romeo, before moving to Ferrari where he helped develop the 250 GTO. Later on, he started his own company, Bizzarrini, and crafted a number of stunning Italian designs, with American power. Among them was the P538 racer, fitted with a Chevy V8, a central driving position and the speed to compete at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1966.

Alvis Speed 25

The Alvis Speed 25 was considered to be one of the finest cars produced in the 1930s. Its smooth and powerful 3571cc engine allowed for 0-50mph in 11 seconds, and a top speed of 95mph. This specific example was gifted to the original lady owner for her 21st birthday, and the original documents show that it was delivered incomplete, with unfitted panels supplied by coachbuilders, Charlesworth.

Jensen C-V8

Jensen C-V8

Photo courtesy of London Concours

The C-V8 was considered one of the fastest production four-seater cars of its time, able to beat the Lamborghini Miura to 60mph. Built from 1962 to 1966, Jensen used a Chrysler big-block V8 in the fiberglass bodied C-V8. The company was founded in 1922 as W J Smith & Sons Limited before being changed to Jensen Motors in 1934.

Marcos TSO GT2 Prototype

Marcos is another name lost to the history books, founded in 1959, in North Wales. Its history is peppered with sportscars with chassis crafted from marine plywood. It first went bankrupt in 1971, and again in 2000. But, it is the second renaissance where the TSO GT2 Prototype comes in; launched in 2004 with an LS1 Chevrolet V8 for the Australian market before coming to the UK a year later. Even though with its brutish American engine, the suspension was developed by ProDrive, making it an easy car to enjoy at speed. This prototype was tested and enjoyed by the British automotive media, one of whom said: "I'm just enjoying a friendly car – laughing as I hang the tail out again and again on just about every corner on this track."

Unipower GT

Unipower GT

Photo courtesy of London Concours

The very first production Unipower GT will be on display at London Concours this August. Inspired by the work of Carlo Abarth, the diminutive mid-engined car was designed by Ernie Unger and shares the same height of the Ford GT40. Only 72 examples were made and weighing in at only 590kg, these 1960s British production specials are constructed on tubular space frames bonded to an aerodynamic body. Only 40 have survived, with many of them residing in Japan.

The London Concours is set for August 19-20 at the Honourable Artillery Company HQ. Over 100 automotive icons will gather in classes, ranging from "Convertibles: The Golden Era" to "The Pursuit of Speed". Tickets are available to buy now from www.londonconcours.co.uk/tickets

Editor's Note: Vehicle description provided by the London Concours.

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The 2022 Acura TLX has the technology enabled.

Photo courtesy of Acura

Toyota and Lexus announced that the WarnerMedia RIDE app would be coming to their models earlier this year. Now, Honda and Acura will be offering the same.

On certain Wi-Fi enabled Honda and Acura vehicles, AT&T unlimited in-car Wi-Fi users will have access to the WarnerMedia RIDE app. The app allows users to connect multiple devices in their vehicles to browse, stream and share premium content from the WarnerMedia library while on the road.

Honda and Acura vehicle owners have been able to use their on-board modem as a hot spot for connecting up to seven devices since 2017. Models compatible for the new tech include the Acura RDX (2019-present), Acura TLX (2021), and Acura MDX (2022) across all trim levels. Honda vehicles with the tech include Accord (2018-present, Touring), Odyssey (2018-present; Touring, Elite), Insight (2019-present, Touring)., Passport (2019-present; Touring, Elite)., and Pilot (2019-present; Touring, Elite, Black Edition).

The WarnerMedia RIDE App allows passengers to access 1,000+ hours of live and on-demand entertainment. The app includes hit TV shows and movies from top brands such as Cartoon Network, CNN, HBO Max, TBS, TNT and TruTV, spanning animation, entertainment, news, sports and more.

WarnerMedia RIDE app The WarnerMedia RIDE app allows users to choose their own avatar.Photo courtesy of Acura

Users can set up profiles and personalize their user exerpience with an avatar from the WarnerMedia library. Profiles also ensure age-appropriate content with options for adults to restrict access to their profiles with an access code.

"Wireless connectivity and connected car services continue to be key features for customers and our long-standing relationship with AT&T continues to be one way we deliver exciting new content to Honda and Acura owners," said Art St. Cyr, vice president of North American Auto Strategy for American Honda. "Honda will continue working to enhance the in-car experience, including the capabilities of the AT&T network and access to top content with WarnerMedia RIDE."

"We're always looking for new and innovative ways to elevate the connected car experience for our customers. With WarnerMedia RIDE, we are delivering a connected experience that's perfect for journeys," said Joe Mosele, vice president, Mobility & Internet of Things, AT&T. "Our collaboration is keeping Honda and Acura owners connected wherever they travel with hours of news and entertainment for the whole family."

WarnerMedia RIDE is available now in the App Store and on Google Play for all U.S. unlimited data plan subscribers. WarnerMedia RIDE is included at no additional cost for existing and new unlimited subscribers.

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Two Volkswagen electric vehicles hang out side-by-side in Florida.

Photo courtesy of Volkswagen AG

With the pandemic becoming less of an issue as people get vaccinated and head out into the world, beloved automotive events are starting to come back online. One, the Amelia Island Concours D'Elegance, is taking place right now, and features some of the rarest, coolest, and most expensive vehicles in the country.

This year's event will be preceded by a parade of electric vehicles called Taking Charge, which will feature several electrified models. Volkswagen brought two EVs to the event this year, but there's a surprising twist with one of them. The ID.4 electric crossover will take part in the parade, and the other is a rare electrified bus form over 40 years ago.

1978 VW Elektrotransporter Early EVs had almost no power or range.Photo courtesy of Volkswagen AG

Volkswagen's brand-new ID.4 electric crossover will participate in the parade. By now, most of you have probably heard about the vehicle, VW's first fully electric crossover. It recently took home 2021 World Car of the Year honors, and is on sale now. The ID.4 is cool, but it's the vintage EV that really caught our eye. The 1978 Elekrotransporter is based on a Volkswagen Type 2, and was originally used by the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA). VW says that it produced a handful of electrified bus and Golf models in the 1960s and 70s to test the feasibility of EV powertrains and charging. The Electric Power Research Institute snapped up ten buses to test with the TVA at the time.

1978 VW Elektrotransporter The EV was powered by 24 lead-acid batteries.Volkswagen

The electrified bus carries 24 lead-acid batteries held in a 1,225-pound pack under its floor. The electric motor is bolted directly to the existing gearbox, which is permanently locked in second gear and sends power to the rear wheels. The early electric powertrain only generated 23 horsepower, which gave the bus a top speed of just 48 mph. It did feature an early version of regenerative braking, a feature that is onboard nearly every EV made today.

1978 VW Elektrotransporter The bus used a combo of electric and existing drivetrain components.Volkswagen

It's easy to draw a line from the old Elektrotransporter to today's VW electric vehicles. The ID.BUZZ concept is the old EV's direct descendent, and will enter production in the EU in 2022. Unlike its grandfather, the ID.BUZZ will produce a combined system output of 225 kW, which equates to around 300 horsepower.

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