The UK's annual celebration of all things automotive, the Goodwood Festival of Speed, kicks off on Friday at the Goodwood Estate in West Sussex.
As it has grown in size over the years, Goodwood has become the preferred event for car manufacturers to debut their new metal. 2015 will play host to an exciting array of brand new concept and production cars. Here's what we're looking forward to most:
Aston Martin Vantage GT12
Aston is going all-out with its Goodwood showing, with the company's CEO Andy Palmer taking to the wheel to steer its new Vantage GT12 supercar up the hill-climb. The ultimate version of the long-running Vantage sports car, the 592bhp V12 monster is limited to 100 units, all of which have been sold already, though we wouldn't let that get in the way of it being driven in anger at the show. Aston is also showing off its stunning – and track only - Vulcan hypercar.
Ford Focus RS
Ford is on something of a performance car offensive at the moment, and has no less than three different models making an appearance at the festival. Most exciting for us is the new Focus RS, which resurrects an iconic boot badge that has been curiously absent from the latest, rapidly escalating, hot hatch war. Still, with 300bhp+ from its 2.3-turbocharged engine, it should be able to hold its head high amongst rivals from Volkswagen and Renault.
Exactly 50 years after the Blue Oval put Ferrari's nose out of joint with its Le Mans-winning Ford GT40, the company has unveiled a brand new replacement. Eschewing the retro styling of its forebear, the new model is a clean-sheet design, and in line with the current trend of engine downsizing, features a turbocharged V6 engine instead of a thumping supercharged V8. Don't write it off as limp wristed just yet though – Ford are promising the GT will boast more than 600bhp.
For many, the Mazda MX-5 embodies everything right about sports cars. Its light weight, well judged power levels and its compact, rear-wheel-drive chassis is the perfect recipe for those looking for inexpensive driving thrills. Goodwood will play host to the highly anticipated fourth-generation model, which makes its UK debut on the hill-climb course. If you like the look of it, order books are open now...
Peugeot 308 GTI
We've been waiting with baited breath for a return to form for hot Peugeots, and the new 308 GTI could just be the car with which the French brand regains its mojo. It uses the same turbocharged 270bhp 1.6-litre motor as its sibling, the RCZ-R Coupe, and will go on sale later this year.
Nissan Juke-R Nismo
Quite what Nissan was smoking when it decided to mate the body and interior of its mumsy Juke crossover with the engine and four-wheel-drive system from its supercar-slaying GT-R Coupe, we don't know. It's obviously quite moreish, though, as the Japanese marque has announced a second version, based on the decidedly more hardcore GT-R Nismo. Full details won't be revealed until the show, but expect it to into severely limited production at some point in the future.
Ferrari 488 GTB
Turbocharging a Ferrari may be anathema to die-hard enthusiasts, but early glimpses of this new sports car suggest that we shouldn't be worried. Despite packing a smaller engine, the new model now develops a staggering 660bhp – enough to get right in the face of main rival McLaren. And the noise? You'll have to judge for yourself as it drives up the hill-climb over the weekend.
Ferrari La Ferrari FXXK
No, you'll never be able to buy one, but it's shows like Goodwood that give us mere mortals a taste of cars as rarefied and exotic as the LaFerrari FXXK. Designed as the ultimate version of Ferrari's range-topping LaFerrar9i hybrid hypercar, the track-only FXXK is sold exclusively to the brand's most preferred customers, who in driving the car, will take on a role in shaping the Ferrari's future sports car models. It'll be making a (no doubt deafening) run up the Goodwood hill climb.