It’s the Goodwood Festival of Speed this weekend - and it’s got more new car launches than ever. Here's your definitive guide to what will be there
Matt Burt
23 June 2014

Arguably the most appealing aspect of the Festival of Speed, now firmly established as one of the staples of the motoring summer, is that the event means something different to each of the 180,000-plus visitors who pass through the gates of Lord March’s country pile.

The four-day extravaganza – from the curtain-raising Moving Motor Show on Thursday through to the three days of the Festival proper – is now so vast that it is a challenge to absorb it all in one go.

From Thursday morning until Sunday evening, the West Sussex estate is turned into a celebration of road cars, competition cars, motorcycles, aviation, stunt machines and so much more.  

Here, then, is our alphabetical guide to some of the highlights to the stars and cars at this year’s Festival of Speed.

A is for...Anniversaries

Maserati is celebrating its centenary at Goodwood and will show off the largest collection of models it has ever assembled at the Festival of Speed. 

Headlining is Maserati Alfieri Concept, which will be making its UK public debut. The Alfieri concept is a sleek 2+2 sports car which hints strongly at the future of the Italian brand’s design philosophy. A second UK debut is the GranCabrio MC Centennial Edition, which will also be on the Maserati stand.

Also on show will be an array of some of Maserati’s most iconic machines from across the eras including the 1960 3500 GT and 1964 Mistral Spyder as well as original first generation Quattroporte and Ghibli models from the 1960s. 

Alongside the classic cars, Maserati will be showcasing its current line-up in full; the newest Ghibli Diesel, as well as the Quattroporte Diesel and a GranTurismo MC Stradale featuring a special carbonfibre bonnet.

The Italian manufacturer is also getting its own exclusive hill run classes and a special category in the Cartier concours d’elegance.

In other anniversary news, Peugeot is celebrating 30 years of the GTI this year, with the landmark 205 GTI first terrorising B-roads in 1984. An enhanced 208 GTI 30th Anniversary Limited Edition will make its world debut at Goodwood. The car will be on static display in the Moving Motor Show and drive on the hillclimb at speed on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Also see…Abarth. The ferocious Abarth 695 biposto will take on the hillclimb. The supercar-baiting front-wheel drive machine has the most powerful engine ever installed in a road-going Abarth, a 187bhp HP 1.4 T-jet unit. The car weighs just 997kg and can accelerate from 0-62mph in 5.9sec. The 695 biposto will be joined by a 595 Competizione and a highly specified 500C on the Abarth stand.

B is for...Bentley

Road and track align for the Crewe manufacturer, which is showing off the new high-performance version of the Continental GT inspired by its GT3 racer. Named the GT3-R, this two-seat, 572bhp V8 monster is described as the “fastest-ever accelerating” and “most dynamic road car” in Bentley’s history.

The inspiration behind the GT3-R – the Continental GT3 race car – will be piloted up the hill by modern-day Bentley Boy David Brabham. Three historic Bentleys will also take to the hill. The Speed Six Bentley, known as ‘Old Number 1’, won Le Mans in 1929 and 1930 with Woolf Barnato partnering Henry ‘Tim’ Birkin (1929) and Glen Kidston (1930) as well as winning at Brooklands. This unique and celebrated racing car will be accompanied by two more classic Bentleys. ‘Old Number 2’ and ‘Old Number 3’ are both in their original form and raced alongside Old Number 1 at Le Mans in 1930. Le Mans legend Derek Bell will drive the Continental GT V8 S road car up the hill.

C is for...Citroën

The French manufacturer is unveiling its radical new Cactus hatch and latest C1 city car in the UK for the first time. It will also showcase the 80th anniversary of Traction Avant, the vehicle that helped to popularise front-wheel drive when it was introduced in 1934, with a display in the Moving Motor Show pavilion.

D is for...Damon Hill

Hill, the 1996 world champion, is among seven F1 title winners who’ll be present during the weekend. Also confirmed are Jenson Button, Emerson Fittipaldi, Lewis Hamilton, Kimi Räikkönen, Sir Jackie Stewart and John Surtees. Current F1 teams in attendance include Red Bull, McLaren, Williams and Mercedes.

Also from the world of F1, Felipe Massa – pole sitter for the most recent grand prix in Austria – will drive the Williams FW18 up the hill. It is his first visit to the event since 2003. Williams will also be represented by reserve driver Felipe Nasr. The 21-year-old Brazilian will also drive the Renault-powered FW18, which Hill drove to glory in the 1996 season.

E is for...Elemental RP-1

Is there room for another manufacturer in the competitive track-car marketplace? Elemental thinks so, and will use the Goodwood Festival of Speed to launch its new road-legal, track-orientated two-seater. The RP-1 is powered by a 2.0-litre Ford EcoBoost engine — although other units will be offered subsequently — with a reported 276bhp, and it has a claimed kerb weight of 450kg. Elemental says the car “incorporates a carbonfibre tub, motorsport-derived aerodynamics and owner-tuneable suspension”.

F is for...Ford Mustang

The new Ford Mustang will make its UK dynamic debut at the Festival of Speed to whet the appetite for the right-hand-drive versions that go on sale here next year. Both hard-top and convertible examples of the American pony car will be represented alongside heritage examples. A new, more powerful version of the Fiesta Zetec S 1.0 EcoBoost is another of Ford’s star turns at Goodwood.

G is for...GTI Roadster concept

Volkswagen’s remarkable GTI Roadster concept is making its UK debut off the back of its appearance at last month’s Wörthersee tuning festival in Austria. The car won’t attack the hill, so there will be no opportunity to see or hear the potential of the new twin-turbo 3.0-litre VR6 petrol engine under its bonnet, more’s the pity.

Also see…GKN. The global engineering company is bringing its record-breaking electric race car to the hillclimb. The TMG EV P002, a 2012 class winner at the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb in Colorado, features two UK-developed GKN EVO eDrive axial flux motors, which deliver 885lb ft of torque to the car's rear wheels.

H is for...Honda Civic Type R

Honda’s hot hatch moves a step closer to production reality with the Civic Type R concept, which will highlight the styling direction for the exterior design of the production car, due at the Paris show in October. The concept, created by a team of three people in Honda’s Swindon design centre, will be on static display over the weekend. 

Another Honda highlight includes touring car stalwart Gabriele Tarquini behind the wheel of the RA272 – the car in which Richie Ginther scooped Honda’s first Formula 1 Grand Prix victory in Mexico in 1965. On Saturday afternoon Bruno Senna will make a special appearance in the McLaren Honda MP4/4, the car that powered his uncle to a championship-winning eight GP victories in the 1988 season. Honda-backed Japanese hotshot Takuya Izawa, who currently races in the GP2 Series for ART Grand Prix, will also drive the MP4/4.

I is for...i20 WRC car

Hyundai’s i20 WRC car – currently in the midst of its first year in rallying’s top flight – will make its UK debut with Spanish star Dani Sordo behind the wheel. The 31-year-old will also take to the loose surface of the Forest Rally Stage – which will be run against the clock for the first time this year – for two runs on each day.

Also see…Infiniti. The prototype version of the raucous new Infiniti Q50 Eau Rouge will charge up the hill in the hands of Red Bull Racing team boss Christian Horner, who will then hand it over to his team's test driver, Sébastien Buemi. Both men will take part in a question and answer session on the Infiniti hospitality stand. Infiniti's new Q50, Q70, QX70 and Q60 models will be on display during the weekend, as will the Sebastian Vettel-inspired Infiniti FX Vettel Edition SUV.

J is for...John Surtees

Half a century on from winning the 1964 Formula 1 world championship, the Briton – who has been an integral part of the festival since its inception – will drive his title steed, a Ferrari 158, up the hill.

Also see…Jaguar. The British company will reveal the first model to come from its newly formed Special Operations division at the Goodwood Festival of Speed. Joining the new model on Jaguar's stand will be examples of the racing D-type, XJS TWR and XJR-9 - all of which will be taking to Goodwood's 1.6-mile hillclimb course alongside the F-type R Coupé and the XFR-S Sportbrake. 

K is for...Koenigsegg Agera One:1

The Koenigsegg Agera One:1 will make its UK dynamic debut at the Festival of Speed, with the Swedish hypercar set to participate in the Michelin supercar run. A second example will be on static display on the French tyre company’s stand. The One:1 is so called as it has a power-to-weight ratio of 1:1 – it weighs 1340kg and produces 1340hp (1322bhp). This eclipses the McLaren P1, LaFerrari, Porsche 918 Spyder and even the 1184bhp Bugatti Veyron Super Sport. A claimed top speed of 273mph makes it the fastest production road car in the world.

L is for...Loeb, Sebastien

Conditions permitting, the versatile Frenchman is likely to have a tilt at the outright course record driving Peugeot’s 208 T16 Pikes Peak car. The current 41.6sec standard was set by Nick Heidfeld in a McLaren-Mercedes F1 car in 1999. Peugeot will also give a European debut to its striking 2008 DKR, which the company will use on its official return to the Dakar Rally next January. Loeb will also drive his old Citroën DS3 WRC on the hill and the forest rally stage.

Also see...Lexus. The Lexus RC-F coupé will make its dynamic UK debut, ahead of a market launch towards the end of the year. The new model – first unveiled at the Detroit motor show back in January – is powered by a V8 engine producing “in excess of 450bhp” and incorporating technology derived from the Lexus LFA supercar. Meanwhile, the Lexus LFA will take part in the supercar runs up the hill at the Festival. 

M is for...Mercedes-Benz

One of the themes of the Festival is ‘120 years of Mercedes in motorsport’. A range of Mercedes, Daimler and Benz vehicles old and new will be on the hill and on static display, with everything from pre-war GP-winning Silver Arrows and the monstrous Sauber-Mercedes C9 and CLK GTR sportscars to today’s F1 team represented. Sculptor Gerry Judah is creating what is said to be the most architecturally challenging installation yet seen at the Festival to take pride of place on the lawn outside Goodwood House. Mercedes will also use the event to launch a facelifted version of the CLS four-door coupé.

Also see...McLaren. The Woking manufacturer will unveil two new models, one of which is expected to be a GT3 version of the 650S from McLaren GT, the company's sports car racing arm. The second new car is a special example of the 650S developed by McLaren Special Operations (MSO). That car will take part in the dynamic displays on the hill climb. McLaren's display area will be home to examples of the recently launched 650S Coupe and Spider, as well as the McLaren P1 and a McLaren M7C Formula 1 car from 1969. 2009 Formula 1 World Champion and McLaren Mercedes driver Jenson Button will also drive one of the brand’s latest models up the hill.

N is for...Nissan

Nissan’s virtual concept, dubbed Concept 2020 Vision Gran Turismo, will be seen in the metal at Goodwood. Some reports say the 2+2 points to the styling of the next GT-R; Nissan says its designers had free rein, with the brief to create a dream car for a fantasy garage in the Gran Turismo 6 game.

Other key Nissan products at the Festival include the GT-R Nismo and Time Attack, Juke Nismo, IDX concept and 370Z Nismo.

O is for...Off-road in the Forest Rally Stage

A short stroll from the turning circle at the top of the hillclimb is the tight and twisty forest rally stage, which has its own separate paddock that houses a plethora of rally-bred machinery. This year there will be a special celebration entitled ‘The Birth of Stage Rallying’, featuring the likes of the Mini Cooper S, Ford Escort Mk1 RS1600, Fiat 124 Abarth and Opel Kadette GT/E . Toyota’s rally heritage will also be saluted with a display of Celicas and Corollas from the 1980s and 1990s.

P is for...Plug-in hybrid

The i8, BMW’s most advanced sports car ever, will be seen in action for the first time in the UK. It will showcase the accelerative potential of its hybrid powertrain on the 1.16-mile hillclimb. At the wheel of the BMW i8 in the Supercar category will be British born factory BMW GT driver, Alexander Sims. The Bavarian manufacturer will also have its new M3 saloon and M4 coupé on display, as well as other new M models, including the first look at the special anniversary M5 30 Year Edition. Also on show is the new BMW M4 Convertible and X4 SUV. Sister brand Mini will show off its latest range, including the first UK viewing for the Mini John Cooper Works Concept first seen at the Detroit motor show.

Q is for...Quadrifoglio Verde

The new Alfa Romeo Mito and Giulietta Quadrifoglio Verde models make their UK debuts on the hill. The Italian car maker will also commemorate the 60th anniversary of the Giulietta by wheeling out some heritage cars, including the 1955 750 Competizione and the Giulietta SZ Coda Tronca from 1960.

Guest drivers for Alfa include Toine Hezemans, who notched up numerous victories in various iterations of the Alfa Romeo GTA, including the driver’s title in the 1970 European Touring Car Championship. The Dutchman will be behind the wheel of a 1971 Alfa Romeo GTA 1300 Junior on the Goodwood hillclimb. Doing hill runs behind the wheel of the Alfa Romeo 4C in the Supercar category will be Rupert Keegan, ex-Formula One racer of the late 1970s and early 1980s.

R is for...R8 LMX

Audi’s 562bhp R8 LMX — vying with the BMW i8 to be the first production car available with laser headlights as standard equipment — is making its UK public debut and will become available to order at the same time priced from £160,025. UK deliveries will begin in the autumn, with the worldwide production run limited to just 99 cars.

Also see...Range Rover. A hot new 543bhp Range Rover Sport will be showcased at Goodwood, taking part in several runs up the hill. The fastest and most powerful production car ever made by Land Rover will go on sale next year.

Also, a new version of the Range Rover Sport equipped with a new Stealth Pack will be shown off. Range Rover Sport models equipped with the pack feature new exterior trim including a black front grille and surround, new bonnet vents and a choice of bespoke 21 or 22-inch alloy wheels.

S is for...Supercars

Up to 40 road-legal supercars are expected to participate in the supercar runs up the hill, which this year will be timed on Saturday alone. Stand-out entries include UK dynamic debuts for the Ferrari 458 Speciale and California T, and Lamborghini, which will show off its new Huracán.

See also...Skoda. The Czech make will once again be well represented at the event. The brand will present two of its recent concepts, the Yeti XTreme and VisionC, alongside the Citigo Monte Carlo. The Fabia Super 2000 rally car will be in action on the rally stage, and the Octavia vRS Bonneville Special speed record car will be on show.

T is for...Trophy-R

La Régie’s tuning division, Renaultsport, has been busy. It has fettled two versions of the Mégane RS 275 Trophy, both of which will be on show. The limited-edition Trophy-R, the car that recently broke the Nürburgring lap record for front-wheel-drive cars, will be driven up the hill by the record setter, Laurent Hurgon.

Additionally, Renault will show off an almost overwhelming array of vehicles across motor sport, road cars and concept vehicles. The all-new Renault Twingo will be on display for the first time in the UK ahead of its official launch in September, along with the production version of the Captur crossover and the latest Clio.

Four concepts from the ‘Life Cycle’ series of design studies initiated by Renault’s design director Laurens van den Acker will be on show, namely the the DeZir, Captur Concept, R-Space and Twin'Run. A design model of the Frendzy will also be exhibited.

Three groundbreaking electric cars will appear at the Festival. The first is the all-electric Zoe supermini, while the second is the Renault Twizy. The last is the Spark-Renault SRT-01E, the electric single-seater which will compete in the Formula E series later this year.

Landmark vehicles from Renault's 115-year participation in motor sport will also be on display and in action on the hill and rally stage. Star cars include the Type K that brought Renault its first international racing victory in the Paris to Vienna race in 1902 and the rally-bred Renault R5 Maxi Turbo.

U is for...Up in the air

Aviation plays a significant role in the history of the Goodwood estate. This year’s event will include fly-pasts from the Red Arrows (now in their 50th season of aerial displays), a Typhoon and the sole remaining Vulcan. The latter is due to be retired from service next year, making its appearance on Saturday even more precious. 

V is for...Vauxhall VXR8 GTS

With its supercharged LSA V8 powerplant delivering 576bhp and 545lb ft of torque, Vauxhall’s VXR8 GTS has plenty of potential for smoke-belching burnouts when it undertakes dynamic runs in the ‘first glance’ category on Goodwood’s hillclimb course.

W is for...Webber, Mark

Mark Webber was a big draw at last week’s Le Mans 24 Hours, where he drove Porsche's new 919 Hybrid. The Aussie will be at the Festival, although contrary to reports his 919 Hybrid prototype will not. However, Webber heads a strong presence from Porsche at the Festival. He'll be joined by fellow works drivers Brendon Hartley and Marc Lieb over various days of the event. Several Porsche Museum exhibits will be on display, including the 962C and GT1 Le Mans winner, plus the RS Spyder LMP2 car from 2008. There will be UK dynamic debuts for the new Porsche Macan, 911 Turbo S Cabriolet, 911 Targa and Cayman GTS road cars, while the 918 Spyder plug-in hybrid will make a Goodwood return.

X is for...X-Games stars

Freestyle motocross riders such as Edgar Torronteras and Petr Pilat, regulars in the X-Games extreme sports events, will show off their skills at the Goodwood action sports section of the festival. They’ll be joined by mountain bike and BMX legends from around the globe.

Y is for...Yamaha

Also on two wheels, Britain’s Bradley Smith, current MotoGP rider for the Tech 3 Yamaha team, is set to ride the Japanese manufacturer’s famous YZR500 OW48 motorcycle, as taken to the 500cc world championship by Kenny Roberts in 1980. What’s more, ‘King’ Kenny himself will return to West Sussex for the third successive summer.

Rival make Honda is also packing the Festival with legends on two wheels, namely Freddie Spencer and Stuart Graham. Spencer, who burst onto the motorcycle world championship scene in dominant fashion in the early 1980s, will ride his NSR500 race bike up the hill. Graham – a successful racer on two and four wheels, will be handling the RC164, the four-cylinder 250cc racer upon which Jim Redman won the 1963 World Championship.

Isle of Man frontrunner John McGuinness – a recent star turn on autocar.co.uk – will also be in action on his Honda Racing CBR1000RR, while the current Pata Honda World Superbike pairing of Leon Haslam and Jonathan Rea will take the Pata Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade up the hill.

Other bike stars include Giacomo Agostini, Wayne Gardner, Chaz Davies and Dougie Lampkin.

Z is for...Zagato

The famed styling house will be represented in Goodwood’s Cartier ‘Style et Luxe’ concours d’elegance. With Maserati’s centenary being marked, a collection of the marque’s 1950s grand tourers styled by the likes of Zagato, Pininfarina, Frua and Allemano, will be in the competition. Other classes will feature junior pre-war sports cars, the Mercedes 500K, mid-engined 1960s masterpieces, US pony cars and front-engined 1990s supercars.

Also see…Zenos. The new British sports car manufacturer will show off its E10 – the first of three planned lightweight models – in a new livery of black and 'Screamin' Green'. Quite.

What are you looking forward to at this year's Goodwood Festival of Speed? Let us know in the comments section below, and catch up on all the latest news in the run up to the festival here. You can also watch David Coulthard tackle the famous hillclimb route in a Mercedes SLS AMG Black Series in the video below.

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20 June 2014
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