Report: Supercars seized from African dictator’s son sold for over $4M in Paris auction

Filed under: Government/Legal, Earnings/Financials

Corruption is a big problem around the world, but perhaps nowhere more than in African dictatorships. Proof? Despite living in one of the wealthiest countries on the African continent, the citizens of Equatorial Guinea live in abject poverty. Clean drinking water is available to less than half the populous, and one in five children is dead before their fifth birthday.

As so often seems the case with dictatorships, while the citizenry suffers, the rulers of EG live in the lap of luxury. With any luck, though, justice might be catching up to “President” Teodor Obiang’s son, Teodorin, according to a report from the International Business Times.

Obiang was subject to a raid by French law enforcement in 2011 that lasted two weeks. Why did it last two weeks? Because authorities had to search the his 80 million Euro, 101-room mansion on the Champs Elysees. Naturally, the house and everything in it was found to have been purchased using state funds. If this blatant display of wealth doesn’t outrage you, let us point you back to that stat about 20 percent of this country’s citizens dying before age five.

The seizure included a fleet of luxury and sports cars, including models from Bugatti, Bentley, Rolls-Royce, Ferrari, Porsche, Maserati and Maybach. The kicker is, most of the cars had little to no mileage on them. Fine art, vintage wine, and antiques were also seized. Now, French auction house Drouot has sold several of the cars, racking up over $4 million in profits. We can only hope the funds go back to the citizens of Equatorial Guinea, but we aren’t holding our breath.

There’s more at the IBT. Give it a read if you’re interested in making yourself sick.

Supercars seized from African dictator’s son sold for over $4M in Paris auction originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 16 Jul 2013 19:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Lamborghini shows off Aventador LP700-4’s guts at JEC Composite Show in Paris

Filed under: Europe, Plants/Manufacturing, Lamborghini

lamborghini aventador rolling chassis

Lamborghini Aventador rolling chassis – Click above for high-res image gallery

The 2011 JEC Composite Show is currently taking place in Paris, and if we were there, our eyes would be treated to the naked beauty that is the Lamborghini Aventador’s rolling chassis.

Lamborghini’s Aventador LP700-4’s chassis is a perfect fit for the JEC show, as it’s constructed with a reinforced carbon fiber composite. The composite material was developed by Lamborghini, working in conjunction with engineers at Boeing. Composite materials are also used in the construction of the wheels, frame, seats and a handful of other Aventador parts. Follow the jump for the full press release.

Gallery: Lamborghini Aventador component teasers

Gallery: Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4: Geneva 2011

Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4

Live photos copyright (C)2011 Drew Phillips / AOL

[Source: Lamborghini]

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Lamborghini shows off Aventador LP700-4’s guts at JEC Composite Show in Paris originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 01 Apr 2011 18:59:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Ralph Lauren car collection going on exhibit in Paris

Filed under: Classics, Etc., Bentley, Bugatti, Jaguar, Ferrari, Alfa Romeo

1955 Jaguar XKD

1955 Jaguar XKD – Click above for high-res image gallery

The public is getting a chance to slather its eyeballs all over a few choice gems from fashion designer Ralph Lauren’s personal automotive collection. The Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris is planning to exhibit some of the more shining examples of automotive history and design from the Lauren collection from April 28 to August 28, and the crew over at Luxist have managed to get a sneak peek at what exactly will be on display. Visitors to the museum can look forward to seeing a quartet of luscious metal that includes a 1964 Ferrari 250 LM, a 1960 Ferrari 250 GT SWB Berlinetta Scaglietti, a 1956/1958 Jaguar XKS and a 1931 Alfa Romeo Monza 8C 2300.

Deep breath.

In addition to those lovely ladies, a total of 13 other Lauren vehicles will be on display as a part of the exhibit, titled The Art of the Automobile: Masterpieces from the Ralph Lauren Collection. Those include two of the world’s most expensive vehicles: a 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO and a 1938 Bugatti 57 SC Atlantic Coupe. Both of those pieces are worth an estimated $30-$40 million each.

Gallery: Ralph Lauren Collection

[Source: Luxist]

Ralph Lauren car collection going on exhibit in Paris originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 25 Feb 2011 10:59:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Not Fair: Paris Hilton receives Lexus LFA for 30th birthday

Filed under: Car Buying, Coupe, Performance, Lexus, Celebrities

2011 Lexus LFA

2011 Lexus LFA – Click above for high-res image gallery

Jealousy is an unbecoming trait… but sometimes it’s hard to ignore. You’re going to have to work extra hard to bury those feelings after we tell you what Paris Hilton has apparently received for her 30th birthday.

A 2011 Lexus LFA.

Okay, just tilt your head back and breathe. Hilton’s LFA still wears its factory yellow paint, though we wouldn’t be surprised to see (and hear) it roaming the streets of LA in a shade of pink very soon. According to the Daily Mail, Hilton’s 29-year-old boyfriend, entrepreneur Cy Waits, picked up the V10-powered Lexus two-door and surprised the heiress ahead of her birthday celebration.

Gallery: First Drive: 2011 Lexus LFA

Photos copyright (C)2011 Damon Lavrinc/AOL

[Source: Daily Mail]

Not Fair: Paris Hilton receives Lexus LFA for 30th birthday originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 16 Feb 2011 13:59:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Report: Paris takes first step to ban SUVs

Filed under: SUV, Europe, Government/Legal

Ford Explorer question

Does a Sport Utility Vehicle belong in the city? Environmental officials in Paris certainly don’t think so and they’ve taken the first steps toward an outright ban of the SUV. While not strictly aimed at SUV owners, the Parisian officials are looking to implement restrictions on gas-guzzling vehicles.

It’s not clear yet what types of restrictions will be set in place for SUVs (and older diesel-powered cars as well), but officials hint at limitations on vehicle type by neighborhood and time of day. Penalties for breaking these restrictions have yet to be established.

Paris is not alone in moving to implement these changes either as Lyon, Grenoble, Aix-en-Provence and a handful of other French cities are joining in this movement. Elsewhere in Europe, London and Berlin already have such restrictions in place in the form of Low Emission Zones with varying levels of success. However, the biggest question is: How do you define an SUV?

[Source: Detroit Free Press]

Report: Paris takes first step to ban SUVs originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 27 Dec 2010 18:28:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Video: Porsche 911 GT3 and Lamborghini Gallardo Superleggera tango through Paris

Filed under: Coupe, Performance, Etc., Europe, Videos, Lamborghini, Porsche

Lamborghini Gallardo Superleggera Video

Lamborghini Gallardo Superleggera chases a Porsche 911 GT3 through Paris – Click above to watch video after the jump

Before we go salivating all over the thought of two of Europe’s best and brightest going the distance through the City of Lights, we should probably start off with an obligatory “don’t try this at home.” The kids you see sliding around the Parisian streets in the video after the jump are trained professionals working in a semi-controlled environment, so do us all a favor and keep your reenactments confined to your Need For Speed marathons.

That said, the video is a well-shot interpretation of what a full lap of Paris might look like as a Porsche 911 GT3 and a Lamborghini Gallardo Superleggera go fender-to-fender. Our early money was on the Raging Bull strolling away with the checkered flag, but Stuttgart’s finest seemed to have no problem keeping the big bad Italian behind its winged tail-end as the two snake around the French capitol. Hit the jump to see the action for yourself.

[Source: YouTube]

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Video: Porsche 911 GT3 and Lamborghini Gallardo Superleggera tango through Paris originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 30 Nov 2010 19:24:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Video: Gran Turismo 5 goes live-action in Paris

Filed under: Marketing/Advertising, Videos, Toys/Games

Gran Turismo 5 Ad

Gran Turismo 5 Ad – Click above to watch video after the jump

If you’re like us, you’ve been hiding from friends and family this holiday season by burying yourself in the loving, automotive arms of Gran Turismo 5. You also likely know that the game was well worth the seemingly endless wait. But while rubbing Jaguar E-Type fenders with the Italian metal of a Lamborghini Miura is as much fun as you’re likely to have in front of a TV, there’s just nothing quite like the real thing. With that in mind, Sony and Polyphony Digital pulled off an interesting stunt to advertise their newest creation – unleashing a hoard of exotic racers on the unsuspecting Champs Élysées in Paris, complete with genuine pit stops.

Metal like the Lamborghini Murciélago Superveloce, Audi R8 and even Nissan GT-R all spent a bit of time playing in the rain in a mock-race. There’s no word on who took the checkers, but the stunt was clearly a winner with the crowds. Hit the jump to see the video for yourself.

[Source: YouTube]

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Video: Gran Turismo 5 goes live-action in Paris originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 26 Nov 2010 19:58:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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BMW 1M Coupe stops by Paris, doesn’t even stay for the show

Filed under: Spy Photos, Coupe, Performance, BMW

BMW 1M coupe striptease in Paris

BMW 1M Coupe teasers – Click above for image gallery

Between the 6 Series Coupe concept, the 5 Series Touring wagon and the new X3 crossover, BMW had plenty to show us this year at the Paris Motor Show. But the real surprise, as it turns out, may have been in the French capital during the show, it wasn’t even put on display. Instead, the Bavarian automaker took its currently-in-progress 1M Coupe out onto the city’s famous tree-lined boulevards, covered up and disguised, but did a suitably Parisian burlesque striptease to give us a glimpse at what to expect.

Aside from the silhouette, all we can see are the front fender, headlamp (which is now taped-up in Zorro-esque fashion for some reason) and part of the air dam – all of which we saw before in the last teaser video – along with a newly-revealed section of the rear bumper and quad-pipe exhaust, plus the wheels protruding from the flared arches. If previous reports prove accurate, there will only be 2,700 examples on offer, so this may be the best look we’ll get for some time… better check it out in the gallery below. Thanks for the tip, Jason!

Gallery: BMW 1M Coupe teasers

[Source: BMW M-Power via 1Addicts]

BMW 1M Coupe stops by Paris, doesn’t even stay for the show originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 06 Oct 2010 11:28:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Autoblog Podcast #198 – Paris Motor Show, Lotus unveilings, Chevrolet Montana

Filed under: Concept Cars, Podcasts, Etc., Paris Motor Show, Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, Ford, Lotus, Nissan, Volkswagen, Electric

Click above for the Autoblog Podcast in iTunes, RSS or listen now!

Alex Nunez jumps in with Chris and Dan on Episode #198 of the Autoblog Podcast. The aftermath of the Paris Motor Show is a point of discussion, along with the Lotus product blitz. Moving to a completely different continent, we finish with the Chevrolet Montana before wrapping it all up by responding to some of your feedback. An hour and twenty minutes later, we’re done – see you next week!

Autoblog Podcast #198 – Paris Motor Show, Lotus unveilings, Chevrolet Montana

In the Autoblog Garage:

Cadillac CTS-V Coupe
Volkswagen Jetta
Ford Fiesta
Corvette Z06
Buick Regal

News:

  • Paris Auto Show recap
  • Lotus shocks Paris Motor Show with five concept debuts
  • 2011 Chevrolet Montana compact truck unveiled in South America

Hosts:
Dan Roth, Chris Shunk, Alex Nunez

Runtime: 1:25:42


Get the podcast:
[iTunes] Subscribe to the Autoblog Podcast in iTunes
[RSS] Add the Autoblog Podcast feed to your RSS aggregator
[MP3] Download the MP3 directly

Feedback:

Email: Podcast at Autoblog dot com
Voicemail: 734-288-8POD (734-288-8763)

Review the show in iTunes and take our survey

Autoblog Podcast #198 – Paris Motor Show, Lotus unveilings, Chevrolet Montana originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 05 Oct 2010 16:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Paris 2010: Ferrari California featuring HELE system

Filed under: Coupe, Performance, Technology, Paris Motor Show, Ferrari

Ferrari California with HELE System

Ferrari California with HELE System – Click above for high-res image gallery

One theme we have seen so far at this years Paris Motor Show, is automakers showing off vehicles which don’t seem to flow with past company history. Ferrari just added a vehicle to the growing list. Have a look at the Ferrari Calfornia fitted with the HELE System. HELE stands for High Emotion Low Emissions and is a system designed to reduce C02 emissions without taking away from the joy of driving a Ferrari.

The HELE System works by utilizing a variety of technical measures including a start/stop function that can restart the car in 230 milliseconds, intelligent engine fan and fuel pump control, electronically controlled variable displacement air-conditioning technology and adaptive gear shifts. The result is a 23 percent reduction in C02 emissions.

We joke about automakers moving away from their traditional vehicles, but it’s these types of cars that allow them to continue to build the ones we love. There probably would be no Porsche GT2 RS without the Cayenne, for example. The Ferrari California fitted with the HELE System shows that the purveyor of the Prancing Horse understands the world is constantly changing – and Ferrari is doing its best to continue to build the cars it’s known for while staying in tune with the current climate of the world.

Gallery: Paris 2010: Ferrari California with HELE System

Paris 2010: Ferrari California with HELE SystemParis 2010: Ferrari California with HELE SystemParis 2010: Ferrari California with HELE SystemParis 2010: Ferrari California with HELE System

Photos copyright (C)2010 Drew Phillips / AOL

Paris 2010: Ferrari California featuring HELE system originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 01 Oct 2010 21:20:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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