The coronavirus outbreak has affected many industries, but the automotive industry is among the hardest hit. After carmakers stopped production and dealerships closed showrooms amid Covid-19 lockdown, global car sales slumped worse than ever before. However, the luxury car market was generally less affected by the financial downturn caused by the coronavirus pandemic. According to data presented by StockApps.com, the market capitalisation of the world’s most valuable car company, Tesla, hit over $460bn this week, almost seven times more than Ferrari, Porsche and Aston Martin combined.
After three years of close collaboration with Aston Martin’s, the prestige carmaker has announced that it is exclusively fitting the new Aston Martin DBX with a range of three Pirelli tyres. According to the company, the P Zero for the DBX has been developed to offer “the best possible performance and handling”, while the Scorpion Zero AS will go off-road, and the Scorpion Winter delivers “safety and performance even in in winter conditions, with the same dynamic drive as experienced in summer”.
Avon Tyres will celebrate its famous victory at the 1959 24 Hours of Le Mans with Aston Martin during this year’s Autumn Classic at Castle Combe on 5 October. Established in 2012, the Autumn Classic has developed into a popular event on the classic racing calendar, providing grids full of spectacular cars from the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s.
The Orange1 FFF Racing #563 Lamborghini won the final Blancpain Endurance Cup race of the season in Barcelona, helping the team to seal the overall and Endurance Cup titles with 185 points. The crew of Andrea Caldarelli, Marco Mapelli and Albert Costa, who replaced the unwell Dennis Lind, started third on the grid following qualifying, but eventually moved up to first spot to take the chequered flag.
Avon Tyres welcomed members of the Aston Martin Owners Club (AMOC) to its Melksham headquarters last Saturday for a celebration of the two British brands, 60 years after pairing up for victory at Le Mans.
Aston Martin has named Pirelli an official technical partner for its Rapide E. The first all-electric Aston Martin will be equipped with Pirelli P Zero tyres as original equipment, but as Pirelli comments, there’s “no such thing as a generic P Zero anymore.” Instead, each P Zero tyre is “created specifically for the model it is fitted to.”
The penultimate round of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC), the 6 Hours of Shanghai on 3 November, heralded the tenth Aston Martin/ Dunlop victory, with the #98 LM GTE Am car taking its third win and seventh podium finish of the season. The tally for the partnership so far stands at ten wins, 21 podium finishes and 12 pole positions including the 2017 Le Mans 24 Hours victory. It was an all-Dunlop LM GTE Am podium, with the #98 Vantage finishing ahead of the Gulf Racing and Dempsey-Proton Racing Porsches. This is the second occasion in recent times that ‘yellow caps’ dominated the podium – the round contested in Mexico last month also resulted in a Dunlop 1-2-3 finish.
Aston Martin Lagonda has agreed a trade and investment deal between the United Kingdom and Japan worth up to £500 million over the next five years of its second century business plan. The investment program was announced by Dr Andy Palmer, Aston Martin president and chief executive officer, during his visit to Japan as part of the UK delegation accompanying British Prime Minister Theresa May.
Dunlop’s Le Mans 24 Hours 2017 is one to remember with records broken, overall race laps led, and overall podiums in addition to the more typical class wins and podiums, in a race with high temperatures testing cars and drivers. Track temperatures exceeded 50 degrees towards the end of Sunday’s race in France’s Sarthe region.
The Nürburgring 24h Race saw Dunlop continue its good form in endurance racing, securing its 18th victory after a close battle between Land Motorsport Audi and WRT Audi. Aston Martin, with whom Dunlop has recently enjoyed a productive endurance partnership, took the SP8 class win with its Vantage GT8.
United Autosports won, while TF Sport claimed the GTE class win at the 4 Hours of Silverstone on Dunlop tyres. Both teams were making their class debuts in the series; all teams opted for the medium option in the cool conditions.
The Italian Autodromo Nazionale Monza hosted the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) pre-season test, the first opportunity for fans to see all the 2017 competitors and for teams to gather data before the season begins in two weeks’ time. In around 14 hours of track time, teams worked on set-ups to optimise their new tyre and car combinations; the 14 cars covered 2268 laps – a total of 13138 km. Wet weather on Saturday evening and a damp track on Sunday gave teams opportunities to work with the intermediate and full-wet tyre options.
FIA World Endurance Championship Porsche teams Dempsey-Proton and Gulf Racing will run on Dunlop tyres in their global campaigns following comparative testing. Both teams have experience of working with Dunlop in the European Le Mans Series (ELMS), where the brand is the sole tyre supplier to the LMGTE class. Both teams will race in the LMGTE AM class of WEC, including the Le Mans 24 hour race.
The Aston Martin Valkyrie hypercar will roll on Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres in 265/35ZR20 front and 325/30ZR21 rear sizes. Michelin said the tyre “blurs the line between motorsport and road tyres”, as the latest generation of road-legal track tyres designed for UHP cars that are used on road and track. The Valkyrie’s high-power, high-downforce, low-weight philosophy represents Aston Martin’s attempt to redefine the limits of road car performance, and will put “unprecedented demands on its tyres”.