Drive Wire: June 7, 2016
A new Isle of Man record, BMW's 2 series coupe, bad racing news, a better Segway, and crazy wakeboarding.
What’s up guys, it’s Marisa Hunter and this is Drive Wire for Tuesday, June 7th.
We have something just plain cool and inspiring for you today - rally driver Mark Higgins has broken the single-lap record for the Isle of Man TT course, driving a highly modified Subaru WRX. And when we say he broke the record for the 37.73 mile course, we mean he obliterated it. Higgins had set the old record of 19 minutes, 15.88 seconds 2 years ago, but this weekend’s run was 17 minutes 49.75 seconds – almost a minute and a half faster. In order to achieve this insane time, Higgins had to travel at an average speed of almost 127 miles an hour on public roads. And yet it’s not the fastest run on the course - that still goes, perhaps fittingly, to the motorcycles that made the course famous. Michael Dunlop ran a 16:58.3 on a BMW S1000 RR superbike, averaging over 133 miles an hour. Congrats to Mark and Michael.
In sporty sedan news, BMW is planning to build a four-door version of the 2 Series. The 2 Series Grand Coupe will retain the coupe’s overall lines on a slightly longer wheelbase, and possibly a liftgate at the back instead of a trunk. The stretched two would compete with the Audi A3 and Mercedes CLA. Best of all, an M2 version will likely also be offered, packing the 365 horsepower turbo three-liter six cylinder from the regular M2. No date yet for its launch, but bear with us; you can bet we’ll be tracking this one.
Not all racing news is good news - Stadium super trucks driver Matt Mingay of Australia remains in serious but stable condition after his truck crashed and overturned during Saturday’s races on Detroit’s Belle Isle. Mingay underwent surgery for facial injuries shortly after the crash, but is said to be missing most of his lower face. Mingay is one of Australia’s top action sports athletes, driving and riding everything he can get, and we hope he can get back to doing that soon. Our thoughts are with you, Matt.
Turning to gear, we have a new and improved Segway, and by improved we mean an awkward scooter-esque contraption. You’ll still look ridiculous riding one of these, but it’s actually sort of, kind of, dare we say, cool? Anyway – it has a 10 mile per hour top speed, a 14 mile range, and all the excitement and dignity you’ve come to expect from Segway. Be sure to keep an eye for these at your local startup.
For today’s ridiculous video, we have wakeboarding on around and over a scuttled cargo ship. It’s always fun seeing people transform a classic summer sport into a breathtaking display of balance, dexterity and a whole lot of cajones.