Auto|One is ready to party! are you?

The name’s Bond… James Bond… Auto|One Group is throwing another party! This time we are celebrating the first 50 years of James Bond. We will be doing this with our good friends at Provinz Porsche Club.

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The James Bond franchise has been synonymous with cool cars, femme fatales wicked gadgets, casinos and espionage. At Auto|One Group we love all of these things as well. We wanted to incorporate as many of these things into the event as possible. James bond has always been inclusive (of his women at least) we wanted to be inclusive of our lovely ladies as well- by this we mean cars of course.

In typical Auto|One Group fashion this event will have several cars on display, Some Porsches from Provinz Porsche club, some Aston Martins, odd ball period pieces and even some lesser known bond cars. There will be vehicles for all tastes both allied and villains will have representation. Same goes for the Women, Casino, drinks and prize packs you can bid on.

Speaking of prize packs we will have an auction for some pretty awesome prizes. The laser that can actually split a man in a tuxedo in half? We got it. The secret lair from the movie Octopussy? It is drying out in the wash bay as we write this. The original DB5 that James Bond first drove? We are testing the passenger eject seat….. okay… so we don’t have that stuff. Mainly because it does not exist and not due to a lack of trying.  We will have some great prize packs that you will love- no foolin! Classic Bond memorabilia, film posters and such. There will also be some great stuff for the Porsche lover in your life. Whether you appreciate the original air cooled 911 Porsches or the latter speed daemons there will be swag to bid on and win that you are sure to love.

This event promises to be a great night and all proceeds will be donated to the Mikey Network for cardiac awareness. For those of you who don’t know what this is, it is a great charity that helps distribute Automatic External Defibrillators and provides training on how to use them. We have one at our office and are big supporters of the cause. This is literally life saving work that happens as a result of Mikey Networks actions. To find out more about this fantastic charity you can visit this link: http://mikeynetwork.com/

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Please feel free to come by our showroom for a great time, great food, Martinis and maybe some fun casino royal style. We are located at 150 Oakdale Road, Toronto. Please RSVP: info@autoonegroup.ca by Wednesday September 25th.

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OH CANADA! the land of epic drives.

This weekend is the Canada day long weekend. While many of you are going to be at a cottage relaxing or hanging out in the city on your favorite patio if you don’t have access to a cottage. Don’t worry I will see you on the patio! Let’s take a second to appreciate Canada’s rich and diverse topography, before we enjoy its rich and diverse alcohol. Auto|One Group presents Canada’s best drives and the best cars do them in.

The Maritimes: Newfoundland has some of the most breathtaking views in the country, sweeping panoramas of the ocean situated next to rich and pristine forests. Traffic is sparse; the budding moose population will present more of a hazard than other cars. The roads are very twisty with lots of opportunities to test suspension, tires and your hand eye coordination. Don’t believe us? The Targa of Newfoundland attracts drivers from all over the world every year to take part in the quasi rally race. You will want to do this with the top down so you can full appreciate the scenery plus, how awesome is it go get some salt water spray on your face while hooking corners?! You should visit Canada’s rocky playground in early June so you can see the icebergs at the northern and eastern tip of the continent. The Cabbot trail in Nova Scotia is similar to Newfoundland and just as rewarding, more cars and less moose though.

Best car for the job? Lotus Elise or Porsche boxer. You’re on a budget? Mazda Miata. You will not need too much power, just agility to carry you through the corners.

Quebec: Quebec is an odd-duck province. You can drink at 18, party until 3 am but can’t make a right on a red. Quebec is also known for is beautiful historic cities and quaint townships. The roads are also twisty through the northernmost regions of the Appalachian mountains but offer more straightaways than our friends on the Atlantic Ocean.  Auto|One Group recommends touring the culturally fantastic Eastern Townships, in the fall with the leaves changing, it will also change you as a person. No trip is complete without a visit to the world famous race track at Circuit Mt. Tremblant.

Some of the best cars you’ve never herd of can be found on the road in this province. 2 stroke Saab’s, Renault’s, Volvo wagons in manual transmission guise, ect…Best car for the job? Volvo S60R, Saab 9-5 Viggin, Subaru legacy 2.5GT turbo (those are the only odd-duck cars I can think of). You’re on a budget? Old Toyota MR2 turbo.  Mazdaspeed3 or Mazdaspeed6. Quebec marches to its own drummer, your car of choice should as well.

Ontario: A little known fact is that the roads in Ontario are awful in the northern reaches… okay it is known. This might deter some… for us enthusiasts, we embrace it. Northern Ontario is particularly sketchy around the Thunder Bay outskirts. We recommend an off-road adventure. North Bay to Cochrane Ontario is a good bet. The Canadian Shield will accompany you the entire way, the opportunities to go off-roading are limitless and the people are very friendly. Best time to go is September, avoid the black flies (you’re welcome) and the water in the thousands of lakes you will pass is warm enough to swim in.

Best car to take: Toyota FJ cruiser, Nissan Frontier, Chevy pickup 4X4. You’re on a budget? Old Nissan pathfinder or old Chevy pickup. Both are indestructible.

Manitoba/Saskatchewan:  The key words here are open, flat, straight, empty. I have spent much time on the Prairies and can tell you that if your dog runs away on Tuesday you can still see him running on Thursday. It is flat. This area is mostly farmland and while it may not have much in the way of turns and bends it more than makes up for it in straight aways that last forever. Time of the year to go? September or October during the wheat harvest. The shades of gold you will see are spectacular. You will be amazed at the natural beauty of the produce we consume before it gets to our plates. You can drive it one of two ways, slow and low and enjoy the views or opt for something insane and scare yourself with the amount of speed you can pick up. Don’t worry, the majority of police cars you see at the side of the road are actually cardboard cut-outs.

Car to take: on the fast side of things I recommend a Corvette ZR-1, Mustang GT500, Nissan GT-R, anything with lots of power really… on the slow and low side I would recommend a 1968 Cadillac Eldorado convertible. They float over just about everything and have motors that are laughably large.

Alberta is a very geographically diverse province. To the east it is the bread basket of the world and thus flat as anything you can imagine. To the West you get the best skiing in North America by way of the Rocky Mountains. This requires you to be a good all-around driver. Comfortable with massive amounts of speed that come from the east, and able to hook corners that drop off into a rocky abyss that catch you by surprise in the Rockies. Your best time to go is October. Avoid the summer tourists in the mountains. Best drives?  Take the Trans Canada through the mountains and then loop back down into the prairies. Enjoy the leaves changing colour but be wary of slipping out on wet patches.

Car to take: Nissan GT-R Porsche 911 turbo, Corvette ZR-1, Ferrari 458 Mercedes SL63 AMG. You’re on a budget? Old Corvette or Nissan Z car.

British Columbia. Situated between the Pacific Ocean and the other side of the Rocky Mountains is the mecca for many different things. Hippies, winter sports, lumberjacks and hockey riots. They also have a crazy network of roads that snakes through the mountains. Constant turns, changes in altitude, inclement weather and narrow roads are just some of the things that will face a driver in the interior of BC. We will not get into vying for space with logging trucks, local wildlife and falling rocks, that will be a surprise for you to discover. Time to go? Not the winter, keep the wheels between the ditches!

Good power, even better handling is a must Porsche Cayman S, BMW M3, lotus Extige. On a budget? Subaru WRX, Honda S2000.

North West Territories.  From the land of black flies the size of houses and ice road truckers comes the great baron wasteland. Yellowknife is one of the few cities where roads exist, although they are shared with snowmobiles and ATV’s.  You need to go in the middle of January when the ice roads are opened up for the truckers to deliver equipment up to the diamond mines. It will be -40 outside so pack warm, there will be few rest stops so bring food and supplies in case you get trapped. This all seems a little intense for you… I know but the rewards are amazing. Long, flat, wide open roads with soft cushy barriers (snow that has been plowed) the only traffic is other truckers and the cops monitoring there speed. Special bonus: the northern lights are spectacular, you will probably see them. They will leave you speechless with there different colours dancing across the sky.

Car to take: Subaru WRX STi, Mitsubishi Evo, Audi RS4. You’re on a budget? Old school Subaru Impreza or anything with ice studs.

Canada is a rich and diverse country with lots to explore. We have some of the friendliest people and each town you visit has its own unique heritage and tradition. Isn’t it time you put on some driving gloves, bought a map and visited some of those people?

happy Canada day from all of us at Auto|One Group!

Grand Prix Montreal

 

Wow, formula one was a dusey this year. Grand Prix Montreal is usually known for its unpredictable weather and this year did not disappoint. Friday’s testing of the cars was mixed precipitation and somewhat slippery. Saturdays qualifying was off and on rain and left the track quite wet. Well trained eyes could see the rooster tails coming off of the massive tires. Sunday brought mixed sun/clouds and it was beautiful. Sunday was not too hot, no humidity and the sun would come in and out of the clouds- perfect for racing. It forced drivers to bring there A game and pay attention for the entire weekend.

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Vettel cleaned up shop and got 25 points in the process. The fun was not in watching who took pole position, Vettel had it on lock from the pole position where he started. The fun was in watching the likes of Alonso start from a 6th place pole position and claw his way up to second place, beating Lewis Hamilton in the process. Hamilton had a good race but the 3-time Canadian GP winner could not keep up as he had chosen tires poorly. Hamilton was somewhat favored to win, as he has done so well at this track in the past.

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Kimi Raikkonen had a disappointing race. He was penalized 2 spots on the starting grid for exiting pit lane too quickly. He had to start from the 10th position and try to makeup the difference much like Alonso…. Unlike Alonso, Kimi could not get his cards shuffled properly and had to settle for a disappointing 9th place finish. The race seemed to be more about strategy and predicting weather patterns than it did about outright speed. If you made one bad decision in the pits or one ill-timed pit stop than that was it for you and your car.

 

There were no fiery crashes, no launches into lower orbit. The wall of champions chose not to kiss any drivers this year, if it did they were more of a peck than a kiss. This is not to say it made for a boring race. Massa, Gutierrez, Hulkenberg and Guarde all had accidents, resulting in the latter two being knocked out of the race.

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Montreal was amazing as always. Saturday night everyone was out in their own race cars. It was the pride of Ferrari at the impromptu car show but an orange Bugatti aced the show (it really stole our hearts). Everyone was out enjoying themselves in their favorite team colours and having a great time.

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We had a dozen members in our posse.  Auto|One Group made sure we had amazing seats for both qualifying and race day. Saturday’s wet qualifying saw us sitting in the 31st section, overlooking turns 8 and 9. This is the section that brakes up the two back straightaways. Drivers come to visit us with the bugs hitting their helmets at upwards of 300 kmph they down shift/brake/pray to about 120 kmph to hook a right hander and then keep their speed and blast back up to 160 kmph as they are waving good bye to the grandstands. Think this is easy? If you are a physics major than you know that it is not. These guys put down 2.5 plus G’s. IN THE RAIN! Our seats on Saturday made for some entertaining rear wheel slippage as the cars exited the final corner. It was amazing to watch the strategy of these drivers as they navigated these turns in the wet.

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Sunday had us sitting in the 22nd section. These seats were great because we could see and hear the racers braking/downshifting/praying as they go from 7th gear and 300 kmph down to 1st gear and 50 kmph to navigate the big 180 degree bend. Once they are on the other side of that bend they are at the beginning of the main straight away where they hit 320 kmph. It is at this time that the cars fly by us accelerating faster and louder than your mind can comprehend (they bump 3rd, 4th and 5th gears in front of us) and then it’s off down the straightaway. It is one thing to hear these vehicles accelerate but another thing all together to appreciate them down shifting. Anyone who tells me that a clutch pedal is better than a paddle shift has never been up close to a 18,000 rpm formula 1 car that is downshifting.

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We had a great time at the race and cannot wait for the next opportunity to see/smell/hear race cars!