"...the RGT has a racer's look with those bolt-on wheelarches, motorsport-style single-plane rear wing and with five gaping front airdams this car can take in air like Whale Sharks hoover Plankton"
There are certain things in the world simply guaranteed to create a hysterical response: Terrorism, boy-bands and, in the tuning world, a new car from Ruf. Alois Ruf's latest masterpiece, the new RGT, was almost hidden away on the Pirelli stand, but there is no hiding brilliance and the silver car with the blue Viper stripes is clearly going to be a monster. Inspired by the legendary 1973 Carrera RS and based upon the lightweight GT3, the RGT has a racer's look with those bolt-on wheelarches, motorsport-style single-plane rear wing and with five gaping front airdams this car can take in air like Whale Sharks hoover Plankton. And although this machine slots in below the monstrous RT12 in terms of pure power, with Ruf's expertise it is surely still going to be one of the most entertaining 911 conversions on the road and the GT3 base is the preferred choice of keen drivers in any case. Ruf has extracted 445bhp and 309lb/ft of torque from the 3.8-litre engine that will send it to 60mph in 4.2s, 125mph in 13.5s and a top end speed of 197mph. And that is damned fast. A complete rear sub-frame and in-house suspension system, together with flared fenders to accommodate larger wheels, should help it in the twisties, and weight saving measures including aluminium doors help lose even more pounds from the svelte GT3 body. Ruf is a legend for a reason and this new car should be an even better ride than the Porsche's homologation special, the GT3 RS. And those in the market for a Z4M Coupe, with its high revving inline six, might want to check out the Hartge Z30 Biturbo. BMW is unlikely to install the 3-litre twin turbo powerplant into the Z4 Coupe anytime soon as it will impinge on sales of the M. But for pure driving fun it might be the best option with an abundance of low-down torque, especially when Hartge has finished with it. Chief engineer Volker Schu has come up with 380bhp and 330lb/ft of torque - far more than the works effort. And it weighs less, at 1395kg, so should be faster throughout the range and through the bends. The 0-60mph time of 4.8s is just a shade faster, but the top end speed of 177mph is more than enticing for a car this size. Hartge has stuck to its love of the 0-99% Limited Slip Diff, too, which should make this car much easier to hold on outrageous doses off opposite lock than even BMW's tyre-smoking effort. And it looks the absolute business, with a vicious front spoiler, dual twin round tailpipes and the typical low-slung stance on giant Hartge wheels. Schnitzer's Z4 was just round the corner, but this one will blow it into the weeds on the track or on the static display. You have to admire Hartge for getting the car ready at al, too, a full engine transplant would have been easier but they couldn't buy one in time. So they took a bi-turbo system and built their own, which is a hardcore way of going about it. Schnitzer arrived with its tuned version of the 3-Series Coupe, the ACS3, with a 265bhp power upgrade for the 3-litre diesel that will take it to 60mph in 6.1s. Of course there's a full bodykit as well, and the car looks the business, but their three-litre twin turbo isn't ready yet and Hartge once again trumped their neighbours by dropping the M5 V10 into the Coupe body to produce a 500bhp leviathan. The H50 V10 was a sensation in the saloon body and, while the advantages of the coupe are so slim they're unlikely to make themselves felt on the open road, it does look the business. Grabbing just as much attention, not all of for the right reasons, was the Mansory Continental GT Widebody, using the subtle combination of black and orange to accent the flared sides. This one just had to be destined for the Russian market, which left taste and decency by the side of the road long ago. Carrying that lurid shade right through the cabin was a touch too far as well, I can't imagine driving this car without getting a headache and nausea. In black, though, it would look fantastic. The deep front end would make this battle wagon look like the automotive devil incarnate as it bore down in the rear-view mirror. And the muscular sides and deck-mounted rear spoiler provide a stunning looking machine, although the designers back at the Bentley factory might have a word or two to say about the less-than-conservative treatment and those sparse twin-spoke wheels really need a coat of black paint. There were other ridiculous colour schemes at the show, too, most notably Geiger's Humvee in Gulf Racing livery. It might have been tuned, but who cares? A clown suit at a funeral would be more appropriate than this, it is a deeply disturbing car and deserves no more publicity than that. Stay tuned for Part 3