In the Headlights - Faster Than You Think {{favouriteCount}} Quantity of Likes

11 Sep 2017

It doesn’t seem that long ago that a car doing the 0-62mph sprint in under 5 seconds was seriously quick, in fact it still is, it’s just that with hypercars and silly EVs now doing it in under 3 seconds the effect has been dampened down somewhat. But get in a car that does a sub-5 second dash to 62mph and it feels mighty quick, especially if it’s not the sort of car you’d expect, which is the subject of this week’s In the Headlight promotion. This week’s four cars were chosen by Twenty First Century Gentleman Ben Heath and there’ll be his interview piece in a few days. For now here are my thoughts on the four cars Ben has chosen:

We’ll start off with the two most obvious of the bunch – the petrol-powered pair. We’re huge fans of the Porsche Macan here at BOTB and we’re not about to be upset by a more powerful version of the Turbo being chosen are we? Featuring a load of optional kit as standard and Porsche’s Powerkit bumping the power up to 434bhp this Macan is one seriously rapid little SUV. It may be fairly small but SUVs are never the most aerodynamic of vehicles, so the 169mph top speed is particularly impressive (though the 4.4 second sprint to 62mph isn’t to be sniffed at). Next up is a V8 powered super saloon, but one not hailing from Germany for a change (their spiritual homeland), instead coming from Japan. The Lexus GS-F is about as aggressive looking as you can make a large saloon without the Police giving it an automatic restraining order from the world. The front grille is reminiscent of a Predator screaming and if that isn’t terrifying enough there’s also a bassy, barking V8 soundtrack to dislodge your eardrums. It’s not up there with the new M5 or E63 in terms of power, but the GS-F is a sweet revving, deftly handling saloon with a great soundtrack.

Our final two are certainly surprising as they drink The Devil’s Fuel (that’s what the paper’s will have you call diesel these days). The first is something that BMW don’t make themselves – a high performance diesel estate 3-Series – but thankfully Alpina come along to offer their own particular style of BMW customisation to make a fully-fledged sports estate that shies away from the pumps like a vampire walking out into the sun. The 3.0 litre twin turbo diesel straight six as seen in the 335d is tweaked and fettled to give 347bhp and 700Nm, teamed with the excellent 9spd ZF automatic gearbox to give incredibly rapid performance combined with a staggering average of 52.3mpg. And if the theme of this week’s ITH is vehicles that are faster than you think, none fit this better than the Audi SQ7. See it parked on the street and you’d be forgiven for thinking it was just another school-run 3.0TDi Q7 S-Line, but look closer and you’ll notice the extra chrome work, the quad pipes at the back and the little V8 badges. They show off the fact that this SQ7 packs a 4.0 litre twin turbo diesel V8 putting out an amazing 429bhp and 900Nm – that’s ‘accelerate and the world’s rotation slows’ amounts of torque. The engine is so complex that there’s a new 48v electrical system to help control it all. The performance of this mighty large and rather heavy SUV is certainly surprising at 4.9 seconds to 62mph, but it’s the in-gear acceleration that will really blow your mind.

Don’t forget – you can get these four cars in the competition for one week only – get your tickets here!