Report: A. Kahn owner turns down $9M offer for his Veyron’s ‘F1’ license plate

Filed under: Etc., Earnings/Financials, UK, Humor

Bugatti Veyron EB 16.4

Afzal Khan has a lot of money. This is, after all, the guy that spent $870,000 for the United Kingdom vanity plate F1. Now, as further proof of the high-end tuner’s wealth, he’s turned down a 6-million quid offer for the rare license plate. Who offers $9.3 million for a pair of rectangular pieces of metal? And… more importantly, who turns it down?

According to The Daily Mail, Khan rejected the offer, with a spokesman explaining that, “Mr. Kahn has no interest in selling F1, which is his favorite plate.” As The Mail points out, Khan’s move to snap up F1 when it went on the market in 2008 was a prudent financial move if he’s getting multi-million-pound offers for it.

F1, which spends most of its time on Khan’s Bugatti Veyron, isn’t the only rare plate in Khan’s garage – he also counts 4HRH and NO1 as part of his collection, although it doesn’t sound like either one is quite as valuable.

A. Kahn owner turns down $9M offer for his Veyron’s ‘F1’ license plate originally appeared on Autoblog on Sun, 25 Aug 2013 15:58:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Read This: Meet TVR’s new owner and learn his plans for the future

Filed under: Performance, UK, Luxury, MISC

TVR Sagaris

It’s hard not to be worried about the reborn TVR. The company’s new owner, entrepreneur Les Edgar, recently sat down with PistonHeads to discuss his plans for the fabled brand. Unfortunately, Edgar was no less dodgy about the future of TVR in his latest interview than he has been in the past. Evasive on everything from what the TVR brand means to him to which of the company’s cars he’s owned in the past, the former video game developer is either the most cautious individual to ever get into the automotive manufacturing game or is woefully unprepared for his new undertaking.

When asked what’s at the heart of TVR, Edgar responded, “I think it’s the people that buy them. We’re looking [for] a demographic that is probably different from what it was 15-20 years [ago]. We build cars that hopefully people want to buy, and they may not be the same type of people that bought them 10 years ago. At the base of it – the DNA – has got to be the same thing running through.”

Right.

Edgar then went on to dance around the question of what that DNA is, exactly. You can check out the full interview by heading over to PistonHeads. We sincerely hope we’re wrong about Edgar and his intentions for the brand, but the executive’s early comments haven’t quite passed our sniff test.

Meet TVR’s new owner and learn his plans for the future originally appeared on Autoblog on Sun, 16 Jun 2013 12:59:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Report: Honda Canada owner database hacked, 283,000 customers at risk

Filed under: Technology, Honda, Canada

Honda grille and badge

Reuters is reporting that personal information from more than 283,000 Honda Canada customers has been stolen by cyber criminals. The data includes names, addresses, vehicle identification numbers and, most importantly, some financing account information.

Still, Honda maintains that the profiles don’t contain the goods necessary for identity theft. Crooks typically need bank account numbers, email addresses and birth dates to pull off a successful cyber heist. Honda Canada had collected the consumer information back in 2009 when it urged its customers to register for on MyAcura and MyHonda sites.

The automaker first became aware that something was awry when traffic to both sites shot through the roof. Shortly thereafter, an inordinate number of unauthorized attempts to access member accounts hit the radar as well. On May 13th, a letter was sent out to owners who potentially had their personal data compromised.

This isn’t the first time that Honda has been the victim of an online attack. Just last year, 2.2 million vehicle owners had their personal information stolen from the Japanese automaker’s databases.

Honda Canada owner database hacked, 283,000 customers at risk originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 31 May 2011 18:59:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Video: LS 460 owner recreates seminal Lexus commercial with different results

Filed under: Etc., Marketing/Advertising, Videos, Lexus

lexus ls 460 owner recreates champagne commercial

Lexus LS 460 owner attempts to recreate classic commercial – Click above to watch video after the jump

Remember that early Lexus commercial from 1989? You know the one, where an LS 400 is sitting on a dynamometer and makes a run up to 145 miles per hour, then the camera pans to the hood, where a large pyramid of crystal champagne glasses calmly sits? An Arizona Lexus owner decided to recreate that clip using his much newer LS 460.

So, does the more advanced and powerful LS fare as well the second time around? Certainly, the owner has a rather different approach, so click past the jump and see for yourself (we’ve also posted the classic ’89 ad for those that need a refresher).

[Source: YouTube via Lexus Enthusiast]

Continue reading Video: LS 460 owner recreates seminal Lexus commercial with different results

Video: LS 460 owner recreates seminal Lexus commercial with different results originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 18 Mar 2011 18:55:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Peeved Lamborghini owner destroys car with sledgehammer, others help

Filed under: Coupe, China, Etc., Lamborghini

smashed lamborghini

Stop! Hammertime? Well, if you’re the owner of this particular Lamborghini Gallardo, you’re not saying stop, but “go, go, go!” According to reports, the happless Gallardo was purchased about six months ago by a resident of Qingdao, China. In his short period of ownership, the man has apparently had a few issues with the car.

In one instance, the Lamborghini wouldn’t start, so the owner had it towed to the local dealer. Upon arrival at the service bay, the owner found that the car had been damaged in transit. No one would claim responsibility and the original non-starting issue still wasn’t fixed.

The Gallardo owner attempted to escalate the issue within the Lamborghini family, ultimately trying to reach out to Lamborghini CEO Stephan Winkelmann. No response or solution has been offered so the owner has become decidedly frustrated. So frustrated, in fact, that he decided destroying his Lamborghini in public would be the best way to garner attention.

According to the report, the owner is trying to make a point that China is home to a growing number of individuals capable of purchasing luxury items. Companies realizes this and are making increased efforts to offer their products to the Chinese people. However, the Lamborghini owner believes that the Chinese people do not get the same level of service found in other markets. By smashing his Gallardo, he’s certainly captured our attention.

By the way, a new Lamborghini Gallardo, which typically sells for $230,000 on up, retails for between $529,000 and $757,000 USD in China. Ouch. Thanks to everyone for the tips!

[Sources: China Car Times, MSNBC]

Peeved Lamborghini owner destroys car with sledgehammer, others help originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 15 Mar 2011 15:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Video: German Veyron owner’s crazy 220-mph Autobahn blast

Filed under: Coupe, Performance, Etc., Videos, Bugatti

Bugatti Veyron speedometer

Ride along in a Bugatti Veyron as it pushes to 220 mph – Click above to watch video after the jump

Imagine, for a moment, that you own a Bugatti Veyron. Wouldn’t you be curious to find out what it feels like to swing past 200 miles per hour? (Okay, stupid question.) While an abandoned runway à la Top Gear would be ideal, one German man decided to break the 200-mph barrier on the infamous Autobahn.

Running up to 353 kilometers per hour – just a hair over 219 mph – is insane on any public road regardless of the vehicle used. But if there’s any car we’d want to push that hard on the Autobahn, the Veyron would be it.

In an effort to clear a path, this Veyron owner fixed a set of police lights to the car, so naturally, other motorists would move out of the way. If the excessive speed is legal on this stretch of German motorway, which we don’t know for sure, the flashing lights are certainly not. While it’s not as reckless as our favorite Russian commuter and his motorcycle ride through Moscow, it’s high on the list of things we don’t condone (yet enjoy watching as long as no one gets hurt). Follow the jump to check it out. Thanks for the tip, Marco!

[Source: YouTube]

Continue reading Video: German Veyron owner’s crazy 220-mph Autobahn blast

Video: German Veyron owner’s crazy 220-mph Autobahn blast originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 02 Feb 2011 12:32:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Ford, Honda lead latest J.D. Power owner loyalty survey

Filed under: Car Buying, Ford, Honda, Hyundai, Kia, Lexus, Toyota

J.D. Power 2010 Customer Retention Study

Customer loyalty is incredibly important to automakers and something earned by providing both good products and service. J.D. Power has just put out its 2010 Customer Retention Study to show how well each automaker is doing at keeping existing car buyers coming back for more. Leading the way are Ford and Honda who tie each other with a 62 percent rate of customer retention. Hyundai, Lexus and Toyota are right on their heels however with a rate of 60 percent each.

Overall, import manufacturers have the edge on the domestics but that gap has slimmed down due to customers realizing that American automakers are producing a greater number of good products. Of the top 10 automakers in the study, nine are imports.

One of those imports is Kia, which has climbed the most compared to the 2009 study. Rising 21 percentage points, the Korean automaker now sees a rate of retention of 58 percent. That’s 10 points above the industry average.

Be sure to click past the jump to take a look at the full press release for more information on this study.

[Source: J.D. Power]

Continue reading Ford, Honda lead latest J.D. Power owner loyalty survey

Ford, Honda lead latest J.D. Power owner loyalty survey originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 09 Dec 2010 17:33:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Followup: Farnbacher Loles team owner charged with $10M fraud

Filed under: Aftermarket, Motorsports, Government/Legal, Earnings/Financials

Farnbacher-Loles Porsche

One year ago, we reported that Gregory Loles, team principal behind the well-regarded Farnbacher Loles racing outfit and Porsche performance shop, had gotten himself embroiled in an alleged fraud scheme. We hadn’t heard much about the scandal since last December, but now the United States Attorney for Connecticut has announced that a federal grand jury has returned a 32-count indictment against Loles. Among the indictments, Loles is being charged with securities fraud, wire fraud, mail fraud and money laundering – to the tune of over $10 million dollars.

According to the official Department of Justice press release, Loles, 51, also owned an investment adviser and brokerage firm called Apeiron Capital Management, Inc., an operation he ran as an unregistered investment adviser after his SEC listing was canceled in 1998. Loles evidently misrepresented his dealings and used monies from his investors (including a Connecticut church’s endowment and building funds) to pay personal bills and other unrelated expenses. While he was said to be diverting these funds, he provided false financial statements to his clients, and he made periodic payments to some of them using other investors’ money.

The case is being investigated in conjunction with the FBI and SEC, and if convicted, Loles could be going away for a very long time. The mail fraud, wire fraud and four of the money laundering charges alone carry a maximum sentence of 20 years, and other charges carry terms of up to 10 years.

You can read more about the charges leveled against Loles in the official DOJ press release at the link below. Thanks for the tip, Benjamin!

[Sources: New Haven FBI, Newstimes | Image: Image: Chris Graythen/Getty]

Followup: Farnbacher Loles team owner charged with $10M fraud originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 03 Dec 2010 18:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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BMW Classic Center completes ’72 3.0 CSi restoration for lucky owner

Filed under: Classics, Coupe, BMW

1972 BMW 3.0 CSi

1972 BMW 3.0 CSi – Click above for high-res image gallery

An increasing portion of BMW’s revenue in recent years has come from dealing in older cars. The Munich brand’s certified pre-owned program that reconditions and sells warranted used cars has reportedly been very profitable. Now BMW is taking that idea to a whole new level by opening the Classic Center workshop. The Classic Center offers a variety of services from parts re-manufacturing to full vehicle restorations.

The facility recently finished its first complete restoration of a 1972 BMW 3.0 CSi coupe. In addition to bringing the CSi back to pristine condition, the owner had BMW convert the coupe’s transmission, originally a manual, to an automatic. The owner took possession of his restored beauty at the BMW Welt in Munich, which until now has only been used for new car deliveries.

Gallery: BMW 3.0 CSi restoration

[Source: BMW]

Continue reading BMW Classic Center completes ’72 3.0 CSi restoration for lucky owner

BMW Classic Center completes ’72 3.0 CSi restoration for lucky owner originally appeared on Autoblog on Sun, 25 Jul 2010 11:07:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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