In the Headlights – Redline Special/Discontinued Heroes! {{favouriteCount}} Quantity of Likes

14 Feb 2018

We’re an adventurous bunch here at BOTB HQ (once someone bit right through a Kit Kat without breaking them first. I know, mental right?), so are always wanting to try new things out for the Dream Car Comp, and this week’s is a cracking one. We’ve teamed up once again with Dean Bartle, General Manager of Redline Specialist Cars and have chosen four cars from their stocklist, that you can no longer buy new and represent exceptional value for money. So I’m going to go through the four cars and let you know what I think of them…

Aston Martin DBS Manual

It seems that the link between Aston Martin and James Bond is an unbreakable one, and that was borne out when they chose the then-new DBS as the star car for the restarted franchise with Daniel Craig in the lead role. Admittedly that didn’t end well for that particular car, but you now have the chance to own one yourself and treat it a little better. With a monster 5.9 litre V12 engine (Aston call it a 6.0 for some reason, but it’s really a 5.9) there’s always going to be a lot of power (510 ponies in this case) but the really special thing here is that it’s attached to a manual gearbox and that’s a very rare thing these days. The DBS is typically beautiful as most Astons are, but they’ve added a good amount of aggression in too, it really is one of the best looking cars on the road. Oh and then there’s the noise, which will make children jump and old people fall over 2 miles away.

Porsche Cayman GT4

Porsche had a really good thing going with their GT3 models. They won every magazine test they were in, drivers spoke in hushed tones about how amazing and involving they were with the perfect combination of a high-revving flat-6 engine and a manual gearbox. But with the advent of the 991 version, there was one fly in the ointment – it only had a PDK-S dual clutch gearbox and the purists were up in arms. But Porsche had a secret to pacify them and it came in the form of the Cayman. It was already a sweeter handling car than the 911 thanks to the mid-engine layout, but then the boffins in Weissach got their hands on it. They wedged the 3.8 litre flat-six from the 911 Carrera S in the engine bay and gave it lots of suspension parts from the GT3 – and it had a sweet manual gearbox. What resulted was a car of such handling precision, delightful balance and raw driving purity that many concluded that it was actually a better car than the GT3. As ever with Porsche they weren’t very easy to get hold of and the result is that even two years later the second hand prices haven’t dropped below a staggering £10k over the list price.

Ferrari 458 Italia

The Ferrari 458 is a great car. You already know that. But the thing that makes it stand out head and shoulders above the competition is the little red-topped beauty sitting behind the driver and passenger – that 4.5 litre, naturally aspirated V8. Sure it produces 562hp but that doesn’t tell the whole story – this V8 has a flat-plane crank and revs to an insane 9000rpm. We all went gaga over the latest GT3 revving to 9k but the 458 was doing it years earlier with more cylinders! It has a lovely V8 snarl when you start it, but its once you get above 6000rpm that it really begins to sing – a soaring crescendo of delicious Italian music that honestly had Christian and I on the verge of tears when we were driving it. It’s such a truly incredible powerplant, especially when linked to that telepathic dual clutch gearbox that shifts before you’ve even finished flicking the paddle. But of course the engine is only one aspect of the 458’s greatness – there’s the steering and handling which are just of the highest level of communication and control in every way. And we can’t forget about the looks; some say of equal importance to the powertrain in a supercar, and the 458 is again spot on here. The 488 looks a little ungainly to my eyes, with slightly odd proportions around the rear wings, but by comparison the 458 is svelte, sleek and beautiful, especially in the vibrant triple-layer yellow that the car we drove was painted in. The interior is a lovely place to sit too, with everything focused at the driver. As this is second hand we must talk about value for money too here, because the 458 may be the same price as a new McLaren 570S, but the 458 prices are actually going up, probably thanks to them being so pretty and the last naturally aspirated V8 Ferrari. Get one while you can!

BMW M6

You really have to feel sorry for those people who bought a BMW M6 from new, with their own money. Had you done so with this lovely blue M6 you would have paid upwards of £85,000 to have this super-GT on your driveway. But now, just over two years later it has lost almost £40,000 of that! Terrible news if you were the first owner, but exceptionally good news for those buying one second hand… This enormous drop in value means that you, our wonderful BOTB players can get a 552bhp twin turbo V8 grand tourer/sports car with four seats and all the tech you could want for the same ticket price as a BMW 440i, which has only six cylinders and over 200bhp less. I’d say that makes this M6 one of the best value cars in the competition. It helps that the M6 is also a staggeringly good car – it is widely thought that BMW were very conservative with the power claims for the M6 and M5 and that the real bhp is just below 600 (proven by many owners on rolling roads) so you really do have a staggeringly quick, fully loaded and very pretty coupe that can destroy a twisty country road or happily transport you to the south of France without breaking a sweat.

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So which of them are you going to pick? If it were my money I’d be getting every ticket I could for the 458 Italia, best of luck with whichever you choose!

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