27 Dec
From the 101 hp FIAT 500 to the 1,104 hp Zenvo ST1, from one-off customs to supercar treasures, the year's best stories on wheels

We bring you the fifth & final edition of our Best Of 2011 retrospective series (after ART, BOOKS, STYLE & MUSIC) — the LIAS Year In Motion. Clearly one of our favorite topics here at Lost In a Supermarket, this Top 10 list covers all our world of transportation and things that go vroooom! Again, this one was super tough to distill down to 10… so we cheated. Not only are we bringing you 11, but we’re also lumping our favorite Concepts together and our favorite New Cars. If you have a problem with it, start your own damn magazine. From our time speeding through Florida with Asher Roth in the Bull Run (racing the likes of Coco and Amber Rose below), to the latest stunning work from our favorite custom motorcycle builders to driving a $1.3 MILLION handbuilt Danish supercar, we’ve got it all covered. We offer you our LIAS Year In Motion, our Top 10 Top 11 Cars, Concepts, Motorcycles & Features for 2011…


LIAS Top 10 Automobile Posts Of 2011:

11. Diary Of the Madman: 48 Hours Of Madness On the Bull Run Rally

Every year we treasure our time in the Bull Run, and the 2011 iteration may have been our favorite yet. Sure we got stuck driving in a broken Hummer that couldn’t hit 60 mph, with no air conditioning, through 110 degree heat in the swamps of Florida, but it was still the most fun you can illegally legally have on 4 wheels. Spending the last leg with Asher Roth listening to his soon-to-be-released Def Jam album — not to mention lounging poolside in Miami’s legendary Fountainbleau Hotel — took most of the pain away.


10. Jaguar XKR-175 Unlocked: LIAS Test Drive

The first of our exclusive LIAS Test Drives to make the list, putting the 75th Anniversary edition Jaguar XKR at number 10 seemed almost an insult. But we could only put so many test drives in here, so even including the XKR-175 was a testament to how much we enjoyed this vehicle. Bristling with 510 hp and 461 pound-feet of torque, the Jaguar XKR-175 delivers one helluva giddy ride with a 0-to-60 clip of 4.6 seconds. The first car released completely under designer extraordinaire Ian Callum’s watch, the XKR is the direct bloodline carrier of the legendary E-Type — Jaguar’s most important vehicle and one of the most iconic GTs in automotive history. Now with the 75th Anniversary edition XKR-175, it seems the Jaguar has finally released a GT worthy of its heritage.


9. Battle of the Monster Supercars: Motor Trend’s World’s Greatest Drag Race

OK, this one is about as scientific as Scientology, but it’s too much fun to ignore. Motor Trend assembled a collective 11 cars, 5,000 horses, 82 cylinders and $1.5 million in MSRP on an empty airstrip and had the funnest drag race of 2011. Although how Motor Trend chose their vehicles is a bit of a mystery — why choose the BMW 1-Series M to battle an Audi R8 GT? Why not at least an M5? That hardly seems fair — and arbitrary as hell. But who really cares — if you like cars, this video is well worth four minutes of your life.


Hit the Jump to read continue reading #s 8-1 of the Year In Motion: The Top 11 Cars, Concepts, Motorcycles & Features Of 2011. And don’t forget to follow LIAS on Twitter or Facebook, we’ll keep you covered all year…

8. BMW 328 Hommage Concept, Weismann Spyder Concept & Alfa Romeo 4C Concept

Our trio of Best Concept Vehicles seem to share some similarities, all being small European sports cars (2 topless). The BMW 328 Hommage Concept was crafted to celebrate the 75th Anniversary of BMW’s watershed 328 line, the sports coupé that helped define the Bavarian Motor Works very brand. The 2-seater is ridiculously light thanks to the use of copious carbon fiber-reinforced plastic… and the fact that it doesn’t have a roof. Or doors. The Weismann Spyder Concept also lacks a roof and doors (and windshield), but with 5.3 pounds-per-horsepower the Weismann Spyder is more like a catapult, except with better braking. Lastly the Alfa Romeo 4C is the one concept most likely to make the crossover to American shores. Although the 4C Concept’s body is made entirely of carbon fiber, it’s unlikely the production version — which is essentially the beautiful 8C’s younger cousin — will use such expensive materials.


7. Mammoth Mountain Resort Takeover

How much fun can you have when you give LIAS a Cadillac Escalade Hybrid, a snow-capped lodge, snowmobiles & lift tickets to Mammoth Mountain Resorts for a weekend? Turns out, a lot.


6. FIAT 500 Unlocked: LIAS Testdrive

Fiat returned to America in 2011 with its utterly lovable 500 Cinquecento, and we fell hard for the little imp. The original 500 hit Italian streets in 1957 and was such a design epiphany that its famed designer Dante Giacosa adorned its fascia with a mustache — as legend has it just to put a flaw on an otherwise immaculate design. It was, quite simply, one of the best Italian product designs of the 1950s (given a culture rich in the language of visual arts, that’s saying a lot). So replicating the original 500’s magic was no easy task — and the fact that the modern Cinquecento celebrates the original’s lines without looking kitschy or dated is a triumph for Fiat head designer Roberto Giolito. Our only caveat? Wait till the performance Abarth version hits the US in 2012 — with an extra 60% horsepower, that’s the Cinquecento you’ll want to snuggle up with.


5. 72 Hours With the Lamborghini Aventador: Sant’Agata’s Greatest Supercar Comes to LIAS

Who would ever think a car could change your life, if even for a few days? And yet that’s what 72 hours with the Lamborghini Aventador did — transforming us from common pedestrians to lady swooning heroes with the push of a button. (Literally — check out the Aventador’s Missile Launcher starter button). One of the most anticipated cars of the decade, the latest Lamborghini is anointed to follow up the bloodline of their peerless V12-powered road erasers (from Miura to Countach to Diablo to Murciélago). Not only is this the best Lambo ever built, it’s quite likely the best car ever built period.


4. Black Falcon Photographs, Motorcycle Unveiled In Carmel

Los Angeles’ premier custom bike builder Falcon Motorcycles debuted the 3rd bike in their Concept 10 Collection this spring, and we were there to witness it. It’s no secret we’re big fans of Falcon’s peerless 2-wheeled creations, and the Black Falcon —  the first non-Triumph-based motorcycle for Falcon — only grows expectations. Founded on a Vincent Black Shadow engine, the powerplant was completely rebuilt. Not only was the Black’s chassis designed and fabricated entirely in-house, so were the forks, brakes, tanks, handlebars, hand and foot controls, seat and mudguards.The Black also features 2 different swappable hand-formed aluminum gas tanks, allowing the rider to switch to a smaller 1 gallon “Quarter Miler” tank for speed speed trials. About as beautiful as anything on 2 wheels could ever be.


3. Ginetta G60 British Supercar, Pagani Huayra Supercar American Debut & Spada Vetture Sport Codatronca Monza

And now onto our trio of new cars for 2011. First the Ginetta G60 aims to return to a more thrilling, visceral and dangerous driving experience by “purposely engineering-out any and all superfluous electronic gadgetry”. In other words, say goodbye to servo brakes, power assisted steering, ABS and traction control. A supercar that ditches traction control?! Say it ain’t so! To most purist drivers in these high-tech obsessed automotive times, this addition by subtraction is a godsend. Next up is the Pagani Huayra, another vehicle whose debut we were at hand to witness. Sure it can go 230+ mph and pump out 700 horsepower out of its AMG-built 6.0-liter twin-turbo V12, but what really sets the Huayra apart is its striking aesthetic — inspired by a “wing” design, with its gullwing doors open the car looks like a bird of prey striking the asphalt like a helpless doomed prairie dog. Equally stunning and ominous. Lastly comes the gorgeous Spada Vetture Sport Codatronca Monza, a roofless sports car designed by the brilliant minds at Zagato. Penned by famed designer Ercole Spada and his son Paolo, the sportscar is based on the Corvette Z06 and will feature a 690 hp 7.0-liter V8 engine with a top speed of 211 mph and a 0-62 mph time of about 3.4 seconds. And as gorgeous as it is from the front, it’s rear end is a vision to behold.

2. Ferrari 458 Italia: Unlocked LIAS Testdrive

What do you say when Ferrari calls you up and asks if you want to get behind the wheel of their 458 Italia? But better yet, why not drive it through the foothills over its birthplace of Maranello, Italy? You say yes, and then you write about it. But words will never do the experience justice. Viva Italia, amici…

1. Zenvo ST1 Unleashed: Trackday With the 1,104 Horsepower 233 MPH Danish Supercar

OK, even with all the amazing vehicles we got to drive this year there really is one car that is unlike any other. Nevermind that only 15 will ever be hand built, and that it is the first supercar to spring forth from Denmark. And nevermind its ludicrous $1.3 million pricetag. And for a second let’s put aside its design — a geometric, brutish shape so fear inducing it makes your heart skip just glancing at its glaring headlamps. What really makes driving the Zenvo ST1 so jaw-dropping is the 1,104 horsepower exploding out of its supercharged and turbocharged V8. The emotion is unlike anything ever experienced. The closest comparable sensation is the first instant jumping out of an airplane: the dizzying rush of G force, the brain scrambling fear, the wobbly gastric tract. It is an event. The Danes have arrived, and we’re waiting for our next spin in this beast…

Follow LIAS on Twitter and/or Facebook to keep up with all our automotive stories. 2011 was good, and 2012 is looking to only get better…

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