Monday, December 28, 2009

Hummer HB compact off-roader



by Jeremy Korzeniewski

With Hummer's future seemingly in the hands of China's Sichuan Tengzhong Heavy Industrial Machinery Co. Ltd, questions naturally turn to the automaker's barren product cupboard. How will Tengzhong replace Hummer's current crop of SUVs? With the news that the Chinese automaker would like to focus on more environmentally friendly models, a Romanian designer by the name of Andrus Ciprian envisions something along the lines of the compact HB concept you see above.

A Hummer wouldn't be a Hummer without significant off-road capability, and Ciprian suggests that the HB would retain a body-on-frame design in lieu of a lighter unibody, though hewn from aluminum and carbon fiber instead of steel. Under the comely concept's hood sits a biofuel-capable V6 engine. But those aren't the most interesting bits of the concept, the stance and general proportions of which would look perfect on the front of a Traxxas RTR box.

Ciprian included two separate windshield designs, one of which sees the screen sectioned into thirds with a slew of cameras relaying additional information to the pilot. We'd go with the more production-likely single-piece glass. In any case, see the stunning high-res renderings in our gallery below and let us know what you think.

Could you pass a driving test?

Created by Auto Insurance

Video: Collection of Exotic Cars in Tokyo



Whenever I see exotic cars in videos like this I remember the film Fast and The Furios: Tokyo Drift....





More videos from Youtube

Monday, December 14, 2009

Audi Calamaro Concept: A Flying Car?




Audi Calamaro Concept was developed by a designer Tibor for a design competition, organized by Porsche Hungary. Futuristic flying concept car looks like a cross between a speed boat and a plane. According to the designer, the shape is inspired by “the bone of the cuttlefish”.

It has no propellers, tires or thrusters. Maybe, it will be powered by a new type of power source that hasn’t been developed yet. It is a very interesting concept, but in addition to the unknown futuristic engine it maybe operated by some similar to "Back to the Future" movie engine.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Infiniti Essence is just a concept hybrid supercar for Now

infiniti essence_concept
The Infiniti has really impressed everyone when they shown concept hybrid supercar, the Essence, during this year’s Geneva Motor Show. Car powered by twin-turbo V6 running in tandem with an electric motor, it was capable of delivering a combined rating of 592 HP.

Now, talking in insight about the concept, one of Infiniti’s executives, Ben Poore, revealed that it was a true phenomenal car, and opted to tease fans and the auto press by saying that the Essence concept is “only a show piece… as for now.”


Sunday, December 6, 2009

Et tu, Clarkson? Top Gear names Toyota Prius its "City Car of the Year





Jeremy Clarkson seems to hate anything that "greens up" or in any other way adds an "eco" label to his cars – and some environmentalists don't exactly appreciate the television host either – so it's with some amusement that we learn that the Top Gear team has named the Toyota Prius the "City Car of the Year." Turns out, the Prius really can appeal to almost everyone.

Clarkson was not specifically quoted in the Prius praise piece – remember, this is the guy who called Honda's Insight "Biblically terrible" and pretended to run out of energy in a Tesla Roadster – but his mates said the 2010 Prius gets "awesome numbers" of 60 mpg (U.S. gallons, as measured on the UK scale) and emits just 89 grams of C02 per km. And all this from "a proper family five-door hatch." BBC Top Gear Editor Conor McNicholas even called the third-gen model "something quite ground-breaking." Press release pasted after the jump.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Buick confirms 2011 Regal 2.0T to come with manual transmission. Wait... wha?



by Chris Paukert

Trivia Time: When was the last time a U.S. market Buick was available with a manual transmission? Honestly, we can't recall anything more recent than a buddy in high school having a hand-me-down mid-Eighties Somerset coupe with a stubby, workmanlike five-speed. Even back then its presence in our friend's hooptie was a genuine curiosity and a source of perpetual amusement.

Naturally, we posed this same question to a few Buick PR-types this morning at a first drive event upon learning from vehicle line executive Jim Federico that the reborn 2011 Regal will receive a six-speed manual transmission option (mated to a blown 2.0-liter four, no less). The answer? Shoulder shrugs and sheepish looks. Curiously, nobody even tried to answer our query with a red herring like the ill-fated Reatta coupe (it only came with a four-speed automatic).

So we now know when a Buick will next feature God's Own Gearbox (probably in the third quarter of 2010), but we still can't crack this historical chestnut – so we beseech thee, Autoblog Nation... what year was the last Buick built with a DIY transmission – and what car was it in? Hit us with your best shot in Comments.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Dartz Prombron drops the whale penis



by Jonny Lieberman

First of all, yes – this is pure Mercedes-Benz propaganda. We're fully aware of that fact. Second, despite it all, we're very jealous of what takes place in this video. In order to show off just how much junk you're able to fit inside the new E-Class Wagon -– or "Estate" in Mercedes parlance. How they settled on building a giant slot car track (or more precisely, sneaking it past the corporate money men) is beyond us, but we're glad they did.

So, how much junk? Quite a bit. Specifically, 1,275 pieces of track, including a section that snakes through the E-Class. All told, the track is over 400 meters long (about a quarter mile) and takes the 1/32 scale DTM cars four minutes and forty-seconds to complete. The track layout was designed beforehand on a computer because otherwise, well... they'd still be building it. Watch the full video after the jump.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Limited Edition Alfa Romeo Brera S 3.2

Alfa Romeo Brera S 3.2



A recent car project between Alfa Romeo UK and Prodrive, the limited edition Brera S 3.2 that features many upgrades the most significant being a weight loss of 100 kg (220 pounds). They suggest the use of front-wheel drive rather than the standard Brera V6's Q4 all-wheel drive system and a sportier suspension. Autodelta's proposal completes the overall package by adding a supercharger to the mix as well as further improving handling. The addition of Autodelta's supercharging kit with an intercooler boosts the 3.2-liter V6 engine's output from 260 bhp and 322 Nm to a more potent 352-horsepower and 435 Nm (320.8 lb-ft) of torque. No performance figures have been released yet for the Brera S 3.2 Compressore.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Britcar Championship: New Honda NSX Racer Debut

new honda nsx racer
The matte black Japanese sportscar was built to comply with the Britcar Production regulations and already completed a successful shakedown test at Snetterton in Norfolk last Friday ahead of its debut at the season's final round at Brands Hatch on November 7. The UK-based racing team said that this newly built NSX Racer is equipped with all the latest technology gizmos such as engine control and data-logging capabilities with GPS, Fly by Wire and live feed video while custom solutions have been adopted for for dampers and brakes.

The NSX racer will be driven by motoring journalist and TV persona Vicki Butler-Henderson alongside John Danby Racing regular James Barclay in the daytime Production race while the car's owner and Britcar regular David Fenn will drive the NSX in the evening GT race alongside Barclay.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

F1 teams play musical engines as Cosworth emerges the favorite for 2010



by Noah Joseph

As it turns out, the addition of four new teams, the departure of BMW Sauber and a massive game of musical chairs in the driver's market aren't the only big changes in store next year in Formula One. As this year's championship winds to a close, reports emerge that several teams are switching their engine partners for next year.

Following earlier reports that McLaren could fully divorce from Mercedes and acquire arch-rival BMW's engine operations, new reports indicate that both Red Bull and Williams are switching engine suppliers for the upcoming season. Williams announced a couple of weeks ago that it was terminating its deal with Toyota early due to dissatisfaction with the performance of the Japanese engine package. While the independent British team had reportedly been negotiating with Renault, inside information now indicates that Williams will take advantage of the new Cosworth package for next season instead.

Meanwhile, Red Bull could end up with the Cosworth package as well. The team has revealed that it is considering staying with Renault or alternatively switching to either Mercedes, Toyota or Cosworth. Unsatisfied with the Renault package and with McLaren reportedly vetoing RBR's tie-in with Mercedes, it's now apparently down to Toyota and Cosworth. Insiders point out that with the ban on engine development still in place for the returning manufacturers, Cosworth is the only provider capable of developing a new engine.

The two veteran teams would be joining Manor, Campos, Lotus and USF1 under Cosworth power. Ferrari, Renault and Toyota will, of course, continue building their own engines. If McLaren doesn't absorb BMW's engine department in time, it will likely stick with Mercedes, while Brawn and Force India are expected to continue with Mercedes power as well. That leaves Toro Rosso, which has yet to confirm if it will continue using Ferrari engines as it has for the past three seasons. Know all about car finance, car finance calculator, car loan, car loans at lowest rate.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Viper app allows remote start of your car with iPhone



by John Neff

As the iPhone continues to introduce apps both silly and indispensable, it should come as no surprise that there's now an app for starting your car remotely. Introduced by car alarm company Viper, the SmartStart app comes in two flavors: a $299 package if you already have a compatible Viper alarm system or a $499 deal for a stand alone unit that comes with everything you need to start operating your car with Apple's Jesus phone. In addition to remote start, the SmartStart app can also lock and unlock your car, open the trunk and sound your panic alarm.

Previously we've seen the ZipCar app for the iPhone tout lock/unlocking capabilities, but this is the first time an app has enabled your iPhone to actually turn on a car. What's next? Well, we're going to start holding our breath for an app that's lets us drive our cars using the iPhone, just like James Bond did with his 7 Series in Tomorrow Never Dies. Big breath, big breath...

Follow the jump for a video of how the system works and what it can do.



Thursday, October 8, 2009

McLaren MP4-12C production plans include retractable hardtop?



by Noah Joseph

Reports emerging from the UK are giving us a hint at what to expect in the near future from McLaren Automotive in its bid to make an assault on the exotic supercar market. The reports stem from plans filed by the F1 team's nascent road car division and its new manufacturing facility next to the current McLaren Technology Center in Woking, England.

According to Autocar, part of the layout for the new facility has been dedicated to "RHT Sub Assembly", indicating that McLaren could be preparing to produce a retractable hardtop version of the new MP4-12C. While the notion of fitting a lightweight supercar with a heavy folding roof mechanism may seem antithetical to its ethos, Ferrari made huge advances with the roof on the California, and McLaren will be looking to show up its chief rival. Insiders suggest the McLaren's folding roof could be made of either aluminum alloy or possibly carbon fiber.

The overall timeline for production, however, suggests that McLaren may have to begin producing the MP4 where the outgoing SLR has been assembled in its current facility. McLaren has ambitious plans for a new factory adjacent to its existing headquarters, but with delivery of the first new supercars scheduled for November, the new underground facility isn't likely to be ready in time.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

GM issues service bulletins for 2010 Chevy Camaro



by John Neff

Owners of the 2010 Chevy Camaro may want to swing by their local dealer between stop light drags. General Motors has issued a service bulletin for its reborn pony cars that affects three issues that may become problems for some owners. The first issue involves reprogramming the HVAC module, which will reportedly prevent HVAC evaporator freeze-up after long highway drives. The second issue involves tightening the nuts that affix the rear spoiler to the trunk lid, but only applies to vehicles with VIN numbers A9126194 or lower. The third and final issue involves inspecting the engine harness of all V8-equipped models to ensure that the heater hose clamps aren't touching the harness bracket.

It should be noted that this is not a recall, just a service bulletin and Camaro owners are encouraged to have these items addressed the next time they visit a dealer for service.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

2010 Nissan Altima leaked online, internet almost fails to notice



by Jeremy Korzeniewski

The image you see above is the updated 2010 Nissan Altima. No, really... it may look eerily similar to the mid-size sedan currently on dealer lots across the country wearing window stickers that say 2009, but the 2010 model is in fact slightly restyled.

Especially noticeable is the reworked front fascia, which now features a slightly more prominent upper grille and a lower intake that's molded in body color plastic instead of black. Flanking that lower opening are new foglights that sit inside boomerang-shaped recesses. We can't make out much of the car's hind quarters, but it seems the tail lamps have grown a in size.

The story of how this image was leaked is also at least mildly interesting. As we reported earlier today, all Altimas and Maximas from the 2009 and 2010 model years were recalled due to faulty upper front strut insulators, despite the fact that a total of zero 2010 Altimas have so far been sold. Automotive News used the image above of the 2010 Altima for its story, but nearly everyone – save the eagle-eyed chaps at Motor Trend

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

McLaren MP4-12C First Photo and Details

The British maker of the popular F1 (1993-1998) and the Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren (2003-2008) has finally revealed its first super car, the McLaren MP4-12C. This two-seater mid-engine model have been developed in-house, meaning that it features no carryover parts from any other car, and will be produced by McLaren in the UK with sales expected to begin in early 2011.


McLaren MP4-12C picture

This British super car is a 3.8-liter twin-turbocharged V8 engine that delivers "around 600 horsepower and 600Nm or 443 lb-ft", with 80 per cent of torque available below 2,000rpm. The engine drives the rear wheels through two wet clutches and a McLaren-developed seven speed Seamless Shift dual clutch gearbox (SSG).



Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Yes, we made fun of the GT3 RS's pink lips when we saw the PR shots. But in person the Guards Red accents look, well, Guards Red. However, even in the



by Jeremy Korzeniewski

According to a report from earth2tech.com, Ray Lane, an investor with Kleiner Perkins, has let slip news that Fisker is developing a new plug-in hybrid automobile to slot below its planned Karma sedan with a base price of just $39,000. No indication is made whether that price would be before or after the $7,500 federal tax rebate it would likely qualify for.

Kleiner Perkins is one of the major investors in Fisker Automotive, so there's reason to believe Lane has knowledge of the inner workings at the young automaker. Earlier, company CEO Henrik Fisker said that the automaker was looking to the Department of Energy for a loan of an undetermined amount in order to build a lower-cost plug-in automobile.

We haven't recieved word that Fisker's DOE loan was approved, so we're not really sure where the funds to develop the new machine will come from. In any case, the Fisker Karma isn't slated to go on sale until late 2010, so the lower-cost PHEV very likely has quite a ways to go before it hits the pavement to do battle with the likes of the Chevy Volt. Thanks for the tip, Jon!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Porsche to offer proper paddle shifters on all models?



by Sam Abuelsamid

The new Porsche 911 Turbo is packed with sports car goodness, primarily with the inclusion of a new steering wheel with proper paddles for tapping your way through the gearbox. The replacement of the silly up-down switches on the spokes will be an option on the Turbo and it seems like the wiring from the wheel to the column is the same regardless of which style you choose.

That means the new wheel can plug into the connection on any new Porsche steering column including the 911, Boxster or Cayman. So if you aren't content with Porsche's admonishment that the two-switch setup is technically superior, you will soon have another way to pay an absurd premium for an option on your Porsche.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Audi to enter EV race with electric R8 supercar




By MARTON PETTENDY

Plug power: Audi is set to unveil a "very, very sporty" electric car at the Frankfurt motor show. Digital image: Chris Harris.

Electric version of the R8 super-coupe is almost certain to be Audi’s first EV

AUDI has confirmed it will finally enter the electric vehicle (EV) race at next month’s Frankfurt motor show, where the German luxury car-maker now appears almost certain to unveil both plug-in and convertible versions of its R8 supercar.

The Volkswagen premium brand, which has hitherto dismissed petrol-electric hybrid technology as an interim measure that is also inferior to its modern TDI turbo-diesel engines, has previously denied long-running speculation that it is working on an R8 EV.

However, Audi’s global sales and marketing chief has now confirmed the company will enter the electric car arena with a “very, very sporty” model to appear at Frankfurt on September 15, in a “top-down” approach that is expected to see the ‘R8E’ debut alongside the new A5 Sportback and convertible R8 Spyder, which has been spied in testing at the Nurburgring.

“I’m not confirming R8, but at the top end and something very, very sporty, we are going to show in the upcoming Frankfurt motor show in September what we think the right way is of getting into the electric era is,” said Audi AG board member Peter Schwarzenbauer yesterday.

Speaking at the opening of Audi Australia’s new $50 million ‘Lighthouse’ dealership and national headquarters in Sydney, Mr Schwarzenbauer questioned the small EV strategy adopted by its most direct luxury rivals in BMW and Mercedes-Benz.

Left: Audi A1 concept. Below: VW Up! concept.

“If you go back to the past all major new technology was introduced top-down. I have a hard time to understand that now the only discussion about electric cars is very small cars,” he said

“BMW has 500 Minis running around with batteries, Smart on the Mercedes side will have a battery in it and I have a hard time to understand what the business case should be in all of this, because if you look around the current battery package to really drive a car around costs roughly €12,000-15,000 ($A20,700-$25,900) – just the battery package.

“So now if you take a small car, which also costs around €12,000-$15,000, that means you are doubling the price, just by putting a battery (in it).

“I don’t know how much environmentally you have to be convinced that you spend the double of the money to drive electric. So I don’t see that this is a real business case and I think the electric car technology has to be introduced like all the other technologies in the world – top down.

Mr Schwarzenbauer said Audi’s EV rollout would differ markedly from both its premium German competitors and its parent company, which he revealed would showcase a small EV at Frankfurt. Volkswagen has committed to releasing its first EV, likely to be based on the Up! concept, in 2013.

“Our approach (to EV) will be a completely different one – we will start at the top-end,” he said. “We are going a different way.

“Volkswagen is going the direction of bringing a small car to the market and we think for a premium brand it makes much more sense to start a top-down approach, so our approach is to start at the high end.

“The one we are launching in Frankfurt, or showing in Frankfurt, will be for the Audi brand and I’m sure that Volkswagen has also something around electric in Frankfurt.”

Audi’s most senior salesman said the company’s EV plan would not require government assistance of public subsidies because buyers of top-shelf vehicles like the R8 would more readily pay the price premium for a battery-powered vehicle than small-car purchasers.

“I think that the price sensitivity at this end of the market – where we talk about a car which is in the range of an R8 – it is easier percentage-wise to put a battery in for €12,000 to €15,000. It is easier to compensate and accept by the consumer than putting it in at the low end.

“So we think that this might be more successful to introduce such a technology than going on the smaller car. We think it’s safer to go on the high end. We can launch this without any government incentive.”

Mr Schwarzenbauer’s comments came the day after the German government called for financial incentives starting in 2012 to support the sale of electric cars, which are expected to number one million in that country by 2020. Details of the plan proposed by German chancellor Angela Merkel’s cabinet are due to be discussed in the next legislature period in spring.

As we’ve reported, Audi Australia managing director Joerg Hofmann last week fuelled speculation the mid-engined R8, which is now available with a Lamborghini-sourced 5.2-litre V10 in Australia, could come with electric power when he suggested it would be the perfect platform on which to introduce new technologies.

“I believe there is plenty of scope (for further drivetrains to appear in the R8),” said Mr Hofmann at this month’s launch of the R8 5.2 FSI quattro. “With the R8 you can do quite a few things. There is a lot we can do in the future.”

It is unclear whether the topless R8 Spyder will emerge with the coupe’s existing 309kW/430kW V8 or 386kW/530Nm V10 at Europe’s largest motor show, where Mercedes-AMG will debut its all-new gullwinged SLS supercar, initially powered by a 6.2-litre V8 before becoming available as a petrol-electric hybrid.

It is also unknown if the R8 EV will be an all-electric plug-in vehicle, which is unlikely, or whether it will be an electrically assisted hybrid with an engine/generator to charge a battery that provides additional drive to the rear wheels or, as with the SLS, to power electric motors that drive the front wheels.

Mr Schwarzenbauer reiterated Audi’s stance that hybrid is an interim step in the march to the all-electric vehicle that was yet to match the efficiency of its own turbo-diesel engines.

“I think hybrid is a technology where you have to get engaged in it, not because we think hybrid is the solution but hybrid is a step towards fully electric driving, so you need the experience.

“On the other hand if you look at purely the facts of what fuel consumption is all about then you see that some of our competitors, especially here in the Australian market, they have one model offering a hybrid.

“We have currently 21 models in the Australian market with a fuel consumption below 7.0L/100km, so I think it is always sometimes more interesting to write about new technology like hybrid, but the facts are different.

“The facts are that not one hybrid can really achieve what we can do today with a modern TDI engine.

“We have done a mileage marathon in the US driving from New York to Los Angeles driving across the country with hybrid technology and TDI technology and there was not one hybrid model – I won’t mention any names – which even came close to the consumption of what a TDI model can do.

“But of course the public perception is that diesel is an old technology. Maybe we’re not good enough in communicating how modern today’s diesel really is,” he said, adding that conventional internal-combustion engines had still more to offer.

“Not only on the diesel but on the petrol side, we still think that the combustion engine still has additional potential. We have committed ourselves to reducing the consumption by another 20 per cent by 2012, so we still see potential in the combustion engine.”

Monday, August 17, 2009

Multi-million dollar Ferrari 250 TR crashing at Monterey Historics



by Jonny Lieberman

Some of us weren't able to attend the Monterey Historic races over the weekend, but the first thing we heard once the laptop spooled up was that a very expensive Ferrari 250 TR smacked into a bunch of tires at Laguna Seca. This has turned into the crash heard 'round the world for a few simple reasons. Make that thirty four reasons, to be exact. That's right Ferrari only made 34 250 Testa Rossas from 1956 to 1961. Actually, let's just make that 21 reasons, as the 250 TR is the preferred version of the car, and only 19 customer cars and 2 racers were built between 1958 and 1959. And while a 1957 250 Testa Rossa just sold this past May for $12,200,000, making it the most expensive car, well, ever -- the 1958 TR that cashed this weekend is "only" worth about $8 million.

Our own meraviglioso photographer Drew Philips had Nikon in hand near Laguna's famed Corkscrew and was able to capture the tragic off-track excursion -- which is why we have these amazing photographs. In fact, Autoblog reader James Iovino was so smitten with Drew's work that he took all the individual photos and video-ized them. Which is not only a word we just made up, but pretty dang cool to watch. That is if watching a near-priceless Ferrari jump across gravel and slam into a bunch of dirty old tires can ever be cool. But hey, at least the TR got beat up on a race track instead resting in a garage during an earthquake. Besides, everything ought to buff right out.

Friday, August 14, 2009

2010 Chevy Camaro Pontiac Firebird Conversion




The finish product of the Pontiac brand killed off the dreams that General Motors might create a Firebird model out of the new 2010 Chevy Camaro, but fans of the car find some comfort in the Trans Am conversions that are being readied by the crew over at "Trans Am Depot". The company said that it will unveil a one-off Kevin Morgan "Trans Am" Concept at the 2009 Trans Am Nationals at the end of the month with the production version kits set to be available for order later this year...

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

WaPo blogger wants to buy Camaro, gets dealer runaround instead



by Alex Nunez

For many, car-buying is an experience that rates somewhere between pouring a basket of scorpions into your underwear and a visit to the dentist from Marathon Man. Some dealerships feel like hives of villainy more wretched than even the Star Wars Cantina, though being held at gunpoint by Greedo is likely preferable to enduring the overall auto-buying process at one of those retailers. After all, as Han Solo demonstrated, one can actually "deal" with Greedo in a satisfactory manner.

Dealing with anyone in a satisfactory manner was, unfortunately, not in the cards for Washington Post blogger Vijay Ravindran, who probably would have had better luck negotiating a peace treaty with the Rancor monster in Jabba's palace. Ravindran, guest-posting at WaPo's Achenblog, reports that with his nine-year-old Bimmer beginning to feel a little tired, he was ready to make the move to a new car. Now, Ravindran is one of these people who admits that "domestic sports coupe" is not a thought that had ever tickled his synapses before, but the 2010 Chevrolet Camaro's drop-dead looks changed all that. Ravindran started with a nearby dealer that advertised Camaros in the newspaper, and things pretty much tanked from there. He called the dealer, left a voicemail requesting a test drive, and promptly never heard back. Good thing the auto market is so strong right now that dealers can turn away prospective customers so easily.

Ravindran's efforts were similarly futile as he expanded his search to other area Chevy dealers, each of whom appeared to have an aversion to the general concept of getting him into a car. Or responding to his queries at all. The dealer that did finally engage him excelled only at giving him a slimy runaround. Granted, we understand Camaros are hot commodities right now and that they may be hard to get, but Ravindran's story flies directly in the face of GM's post-bankruptcy spin about great dealers, great service, etc. You can read Ravindran's whole tale at Achenblog. As for Vijay Ravindran himself, he's no dummy: he's pretty much given up on his Camaro quest.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Techco unleashes 600 horsepower Corvette supercharger system



by Drew Phillips

If you haven't heard much about Techco, you soon will. The Anaheim-based aftermarket company launched a bevy of performance products for the Chrysler LX platform and Ford Mustang earlier this year, and recently stuffed its reverse-revolution twin-screw supercharger system underneath the hood of a brand new C6 Corvette. The result? 600 horsepower and 535 lb-ft torque at just six pounds of boost.

Designed and engineered by the same team that created the Series VI supercharger for the Saleen Mustangs, the Techco Corvette supercharger displaces 3.0 liters and features a standalone 8-rib drive system, patented dual A-Frame Intercooler system, high-volume fuel rails with 54 lb/hr injectors, and more. Corvette owners will also be pleased to hear it fits underneath the stock hood.

We recently got the chance to get behind the wheel of Techco's demo Corvette for a short drive, and were simply amazed at the dual nature of the car. From the outside it appears to simply be a stock Corvette - it looks stock, sounds stock, and even drives stock if you lay off the throttle. A unique drive system helps to keep things quiet, muting the sound of the supercharger. Get on the gas, though, and the blown LS3 propels the Corvette past legal speeds in the blink of an eye. With a package price of just $8,500 and an optional 10 psi kit, it's a pretty good bargain as well. Full details in the press release after the jump.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Triumph Daytona motorcycle assembled from Lego bricks



by Jeremy Korzeniewski

Further proof that you can literally fashion anything if given access to enough interconnecting Lego bricks is this Triumph Daytona 1200 motorcycle. The machine has apparently been on display for quite some time at Legoland Windsor in Berkshire, England and is obviously assembled from thousands of individual pieces. We especially like the detailed engine, which is complete with linkages for the carbs and throttle cables.

As cool as this creation is, how much better would it be with a fully functional Lego engine? Of course, having a full-scale building-block motorcycle would also require a matching helmet. May we suggest this one? Click past the break for a video of the LEGO Triumph Daytona on its display stand and click here for more automotive-themed Lego madness.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Automotive Parts and Accessories for your Vehicle

If you’re a vehicle owner and find yourself looking at a damaged part of your vehicle, don’t start shopping for parts on local salvage yards. You might get the raw end of the deal there. The best thing you can do is to shop for auto parts and accessories online. The car parts industry has improved over the years and you can now enjoy the convenience of Internet ecommerce to buy quality used auto part and accessories. In fact you can purchase whatever auto part and accessories you need from auto parts and accessories online seller.

One of the biggest benefits of buying auto parts and accessories online is convenience. With simple click and point of the mouse, you will be able to easily find what you are looking for on the Internet. Whether you are looking for used auto part, hard to find accessories, rebuilt engines or used transmissions, you can find it in an online car part vendor site. You can avoid the hassle trudging through several salvage yards and hauling back the auto parts you bought. By shopping for auto parts and accessories online, you can simply order what you need and the merchandise will be delivered to you quickly.

Another advantage of shopping for auto parts and accessories online is accessibility. No matter what time of the day, you can always shop for used auto part and accessories that your vehicle needs. Sometimes, it would be difficult to find the right auto parts and accessories that can replace the damaged ones. Simply go online and order the specific used auto part and accessories you need. The online auto parts and accessories vendor will look for replacements on your behalf. An online auto parts and accessories vendor normally has contacts with manufacturers, salvage warehouses, and other suppliers. Allow them to look for the used auto part that you need and they will deliver it to you.

Quality is the biggest concern when buying used auto part and accessories. Because of modern remanufacturing processes, the quality of the used auto part and accessories you can buy online is guaranteed. There is a strict industry standard being followed in the auto parts and accessories market. In order to continue their businesses, online auto parts and accessories vendors ensure that their items are following the standards set by the industry. Usually, parts and accessories have been tested for performance especially if you are buying used engines or transmissions. So you will seldom encounter a problem if you buy used auto part and accessories online.

Consumer security is also protected by online auto parts and accessories sellers. If you purchase auto parts and accessories online, you will be required to pay through credit cards. Modern ecommerce security and site security features are already in place now to make your purchase safer. Your personal information will not be compromised if you buy online. A good online auto parts and accessories seller also protects your interest by providing warranties for its products. You can also get a return privilege if ever you see defects on the items you bought. These are the guarantees and protection you can enjoy from an online auto part and accessories seller.

Internet technology changed the entire online auto parts and accessories market. You can now enjoy the convenience and safety of online shopping if ever you need replacements for damaged auto parts and accessories. You can also get quality used auto parts and accessories at a much lower price from an online auto part and accessories seller.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

What Grille Guards Can Do for Your Truck

by: Kay Zetkin

Isn’t it an appealing thought to make your truck look better while still protecting it? You can actually accomplish this through several ways. However, few ways are as dramatic as installing grill guards to your truck.

Are you familiar with truck grill guards? You may say you are, on sight at least. However, are you aware that these devices offer tremendous advantages for your truck, especially if you are using it for off road riding and job sites? Probably not. Very few actually know about this.

Most models of truck grill guards are formed by tubular steel. The front end of your beloved truck is very much protected by having this device installed there. Aside from the usual protection it offers to the grille, itself, grill guards also protect the radiator that is typically behind the grille. You can have truck grill guards based on your preferred finish. There are several kinds of finishes available, as most truck accessories usually do. You can match your grill guard to your other truck accessories to give it a certain complete look.

When looking for a grill guard for your truck, you have to remember a few important things:

1. Remember that you have to purchase the grill guards designed to fit the specific make and brand of your vehicle. By doing this, the possibility of having to drill new holes in your truck’s underside in order to provide a perfect fit for your new grill guard is eliminated. Several companies actually offer custom designed truck grill guards for many truck makes or brand.

2. It is also important that you purchase an entire truck grill guard package, complete with skid plate and/or skid plate and other component pieces.

3. Lastly, make sure that you consider the gauge of steel that your choice of guard is constructed with. Thicker is better since it would guarantee more protection. However, your grill guard will be heavier and would involve more pounds of gasoline to load your truck.

If you have already decided on all these items, next thing you have to decide is the finish you prefer. Many companies offer stainless steel, chrome and powder coated black truck grill guards. As far as longevity and looks are concerned, each of these types of finish has something different to offer. Remember to check with your grill guard retailer and find out the length of warranty that they apply to each type of finish.

Then, next is the issue of style. This option depends on the appearance of steel it is made with. Finally, you must decide on the installation of your new grill guard. Some brands can be easily installed on their own by you while just having to bolt it in place. Meanwhile in installing other brands, like the OEM options, you need a skilled mechanic’s assistance. You can actually choose a few options according to your mechanical abilities.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Want to make your car sound turbocharged? Get the Turbo Whistler!



by Drew Phillips

Have you ever wanted your car to sound turbocharged without having any of the functional benefits? Yeah, neither have we, but apparently someone thought it was a good idea to make such a product. Knowing some of the things people put on their cars, we have no doubt it will find a few buyers too. Named the Turbo Whistler, this aluminum device clamps onto your tailpipe (no welding or drilling necessary!) and emits a sound similar (a term used very loosely in this case) to the whistle of a turbocharger under throttle. The company's web site claims that it will trick all of your friends into thinking your vehicle is benefiting from forced induction. Our guess is that if they don't know the difference, they will also believe you when you tell them your Honda Accord is also a "10-second car." Watch the Turbo Whistler in action in the video after the jump.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Mosley drops two-tier system, Ferrari takes FIA to court



by Noah Joseph

With the May 29 deadline for registering for the 2010 Formula 1 season fast approaching and the bulk of the current teams threatening to walk out of the series, FIA chief Max Mosley and F1 commercial director Bernie Ecclestone met in London on Friday with the heads of each Formula One team to iron out a deal that would allow the sport to accelerate past the standoff and into the next season. How that meeting went, however, depends on who you ask.


First of all, both Mosley and Ecclestone confirmed that the proposed two-tier system that would have forced teams to choose between either severe aerodynamic penalties or restrictive budget caps has been scrapped. That was the major sticking point that the Formula One Teams Association and its members (i.e., all the teams currently on the grid) objected to. However, the meeting's conclusion was still described as a stalemate, given that the teams are still threatening to leave and that a substitute for the two-tier system approved by the FIA's World Motorsport Council has not been agreed upon. Mosley proposes a drastic £40 million ($60 million) budget cap to be imposed on all the teams, large or small, veteran or newcomer. While the teams in general agree that a budget cap is logical, they have yet to agree on the amount, while some of the teams are suggesting that other solutions be sought instead.

The parties are set to meet again this coming Friday in Monte Carlo, ahead of the Monaco Grand Prix, to resume discussions. But Ferrari, for one, is hedging its bets. With Mosley insisting that the sport could do without its longest-standing team, the Scuderia has filed a court injunction against the FIA's regulations. Ferrari is believed to have been given veto power over any substantive regulation changes, a clause that the team says has not been respected. Mosley, in turn, insists that one team cannot dictate the rules of the entire sport. Other Italian sporting bodies have stepped up to back Ferrari, as organizers of Rome's proposed grand prix threaten to cancel the project in the absence of their home team, while the Italian Olympic Committee throws its weight behind Ferrari as well. Maranello's injunction will be heard in court on Tuesday, when we'll find out if the Scuderia has legal backing to its objections.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Top 20 Fastest Super Cars?

What do you think about this video about fastest cars? Share your thoughts.


Top 20 Fastest Supercar - The funniest videos are a click away



Video from 20 Top Fastest Super Cars

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Finest Police Cars in the World

These where some of the finest police car photo collection all over the world:





South Africa: Lamborghini Gallardo

The nearly $200,000 car was loaned to the authorities by a local Lamborghini importer to use it as an “attention-getting device” to control traffic....






UK: Lamborghini Gallardo


More Photos of
The World’s Finest Police Cars

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Hyundai Nuvis Concept


The Hyundai Nuvis concept (hybrid drivetrain) is destined for the next-generation Sonata...


As a parallel hybrid, the Nuvis can be driven in all-electric mode, gasoline-engine-only mode as well as any combination thereof. Engine management software automatically shuts off the gasoline engine when the Nuvis comes to a stop, improving overall fuel mileage and providing zero emissions, while Hyundai's Integrated Starter Generator (ISG) restarts the engine once pressure is applied to the accelerator pedal.


The Nuvis is notable for two reasons: First, its hybrid drive train will find its way into the next-generation Hyundai Sonata, and second, Hyundai says the concept's styling hints at what the Santa Fe's replacement could look like.


Hyundai's Hybrid Blue Drive architecture combines a 2.4-liter 4-cylinder (known as the Theta II) with a 30- kW electric motor, the last also producing 151 lb.-ft. of torque. The total estimated output of 228 bhp is put to the road via a 6-speed automatic transmission. Hyundai says the Nuvis's lithium polymer batteries, which are stored underneath the trunk floor, are more durable and space efficient than nickel-metal hydride and lithium- ion versions.


Detailed stories at Hyundai Nuvis Concept

Rubber Truck Bed Mats And The Smashed Ranger


By: Al Bullington

Not too long ago a neighbor asked me to help him split and stack a big firewood pile. Sure, I thought. As this project progressed, my mental anguish increased and my appreciation for rubber truck bed mats increased. Here's the story...

See, the neighbor has a son with lots of energy and there were several other kids there too. So they get in a race to see how fast they can build a wood pile. Now the neighbor's late model, like-new, Ford Ranger pickup comes into play.

There's a short pickup haul from the splitter to the finished firewood pile. The shiny red Ford is the truck for the hauling. So at first the wood is loaded, with the neighbor son in charge, at a careful pace. Heavy, seasoned oak pieces are carefully placed in the Ford. Then as the afternoon wears on, the competition for speed increases.

The careful firewood placement evolves into firewood tosses. Now mind you these are heavy, hard oak slabs and the tosses are from fifteen to twenty feet out. As things progress, the wood starts to bounce on the bed of the truck. You can almost feel the dents. You sure can hear them. The blows fall faster and harder. The pace quickens.

Now the wood is raining on the fenders, on the rear window, inside, outside, everywhere the blows land. It's like a demolition derby. It's total destruction of a perfectly good truck. Dents, scratches and damage everywhere. It's a destroyed truck in just a few hours. It's amazing.

No truck bed mats can protect a truck from gross damage like that.

But rubber truck mats can stand up to almost any damage a SANE person would cause in normal use. Save your truck from expensive damage with some cheap bed mats.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Off Road Tires


By Richard Romando

Adventure sports are very popular and boast of a huge fan following worldwide. The adrenaline rush and extreme sporting action is not something everyone would opt for thus watching the sport becomes the next best option. Apart from their skills, competitors are highly dependant upon their vehicles, components, and tires. Off road tires have all terrain treads and can easily maintain balance on uneven surfaces. Off road tires are not suitable for regular paved roads and are used for motor cross seasons, all-terrain races, and sand rail competitions.

Off road races could involve bicycles, motorbikes, or motor vehicles. Competitors could be required to traverse paths that are sandy, all terrain landscapes, dirty and mountainous. It is obvious that regular tires would cease to perform on such terrain and hence the use of off road tires is advocated. It is advisable not to use off road tires for regular use as they are designed especially for off road activities. Extreme conditions, high speed, and quick wear prevent off road tires from regular use. They are not designed for such usage, tend to be noisy and wear faster. These special tread patterns wear off quickly if used on asphalt roads and paths. When used on a competitive level, off road tires need to be changed more often than regular tires. In most cases off road tire expenses are borne by sponsors and manufacturers themselves.

Off road tires are available in various sizes and widths. Off road tires are classified into two major types. They are all terrain treads and mud treads. All terrain treads are apt for off-highway conditions and its closed tread design reduces noise on highways and is well suited for rocks as well as sand. They are not very good on muddy terrain but certain designs are able to combat such problems. Mud off road tires can cope in muddy situations, deep snow, and rocks. They may not perform all that well in case of rain and icy paths.

The Infiniti Essence Concept

Infiniti Essence Concept Car

Infiniti Essence is the halo car of Infiniti that needs to define itself as a luxury sports car manufacturer. Representing the theme, "Everything I want, nothing I don't," the Essence is a front-engine, rear-drive sports coupe with seating for two. Its shape is sinewy with some interesting lines. Notably absent are side mirrors and they've been replaced with miniature cameras. The Power comes from a twin-turbocharged 3.7-liter V-6. It's not exactly the engine from the Nissan GT-R, but it is really close. The initial specs call for 434 horsepower with a 7500-rpm redline, but the final car promises a total output closer to 600 horsepower. Done with the addition of a hybrid drive system that integrates a 158-hp electric motor in parallel and combines the two power sources by way of clutches installed ahead of the transmission. A large lithium-ion battery pack leaves minimal space for luggage. The solution? Custom luggage from Louis Vuitton. With the click of a button the rear deck opens and out slides the custom cases. The automatic luggage ejection is neat — just what you'd expect of a concept. The Infiniti Essence is a part fantasy and part reality.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

The Kia Forte LPI Hybrid




Kia Forte LPI hybrid car, powered by hybrid power train that consist of a 114 hp 1.6 liters LPI (Liquefied Petroleum Injected) engine and 20 hp electric motor. The company claims their new hybrid achieves fuel economy of 17.2 kilometers per liter of LPG fuel (41 MPG US), the equivalent to 21.5 kilometers per liter of gasoline. The electric motor is powered by highly advanced lithium polymer (Li–poly) battery that is new lighter and smaller battery with higher output than nickel-metal hydride batteries.


Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Gm Plans Diesel-powered Cadillac, Saturn Cars by 2010

Author: Anthony Fontanelle

The General Motors Corp. plans to build diesel-powered vehicles under the Cadillac and Saturn brands in the United States by 2010. This information, as reported by Automotive News online journal, was divulged by the company’s head honcho Bob Lutz.

As gasoline prices continue to increase and more people become anxious about global warming issues, automakers are starting to make alternative fuels a bit more of a priority. The Toyota Motor Corp. has already announced that everything will be a hybrid. But the team at GM is taking a somewhat diverse approach.

Lutz recently dropped a pretty major bomb saying that the largest American automaker is working on a diesel-electric hybrid platform and it just may be flaunted in September at the Frankfurt Auto Show. Watchers in the industry said that the model will likely be an e-flex Opel Vectra.

In a video blog on the company's website dated Thursday, Lutz confirmed that the Detroit automaker would use clean diesel engines in passenger cars, sport utility vehicles and other light-duty trucks. He stressed, however, that emissions hardware and control systems needed to meet the standards would add another $2,000 to $2,800 to the $1,000-$2,000 premium that already exists for diesels over gasoline-engine cars.

A diesel car in Europe is not that big a deal, but when the Detroit Motor Show rolls around in January, the Detroit automaker plans on sporting the same e-flex technology in a Saturn, most likely the Aura sedan. And then, “it'll end up in a Cadillac, and there will be a front-wheel-drive version of the engine in 2009 or 2010 calendar year.”

The automaker will show the same variant at the Detroit auto show in January on a Saturn, most likely the Aura sedan, the industry journal stressed. The diesel engine will power the Opel Vectra in Europe by next year, and the next-generation Aura in the United States if all goes as planned, it said.

This time around, GM will not only be showcasing a stylish Saturn vent visor or a striking Cadillac fa├žade - the automaker intends to deliver a slice of what is to come regarding its lineup. The e-flex powertrain was first shown in the Chevy Volt which was displayed earlier this year. It is where “a traditional engine such as a diesel or gasoline engine, recharges a battery pack that provides power for an electric motor.”

The United States will gradually begin enforcing the world's strictest regulations for harmful nitrogen oxide (NOx) and particulate matter (PM) emissions starting from 2008 model year cars, and GM has been tepid about clean diesel engines as a remedy for bolstering fuel economy citing the high cost of development.

The Detroit automaker would be joining diesel front-runners such as the DaimlerChrysler AG and Volkswagen AG, as well as Japan's Nissan Motor Co. and the Honda Motor Co. in promising diesel vehicles compliant with the U.S. Tier 2 bin 5 emissions standards. Toyota has yet to join the growing list, saying clean diesels would end up being more expensive than gasoline-electric hybrids, a segment the automaker dominates.

Company sources said that GM will show a diesel engine at the Frankfurt auto show in September on an e-flex Opel Vectra, In GM's e-flex powertrain, a traditional engine recharges a battery pack that provides power for an electric motor.

Historically, diesel engines have been difficult to initiate, as they are typically designed to be large torque monsters in most applications. But at idle they sip comparatively little fuel, so truckers take pleasure in A/C and television in their crew cabs while the engine runs overnight. But there is certainly no reason to run a modern diesel any longer than necessary.


About the Author:

Anthony Fontanelle is a 35-year-old automotive buff who grew up in the Windy City. He does freelance work for an automotive magazine when he is not busy customizing cars in his shop.

Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/automotive-articles/gm-plans-dieselpowered-cadillac-saturn-cars-by-2010-181398.html

Monday, February 16, 2009

Maxximus G-Force : The World's Fastest Street Legal Car



The Maxximus G-Force has been given the designation of the world's fastest street-legal car. This car is a 1600 horsepower engine, in a 2700 pound body, and with speed of 60 mph in 2.1 seconds. The fact that this vehicle perform 0 to 100 mph in the same amount of time it takes a BMW M6 to perform 0 to 60 mph - about 4.5 seconds. The engine that performs this feat is a mid-mounted twin turbocharged Chevy V8 engine. With all that power, the gearbox had to be adjusted accordingly. A specially crafted 3 speed transmission operated by paddle shifters was created to handle this task. In order to bring this monster to a stop, 14.2 inch 6-piston AP Racing calipers are engaged….



More stories here



Brembo to temporarily lay off 1,800




With fewer cars being produced and sold, automotive suppliers face the same challenges as automakers. Italy's Brembo, producer of some of the most delectable braking hardware, will be laying off more than 1,800 workers to cope with a fourth quarter loss. The cuts will more closely align Brembo's production with newly decreased demand, and will affect workers at Brembo's locations in Italy, Mexico, and Poland. There is a government/industry fund that Brembo wishes to tap to help pay for the layoffs, though the cuts may be for a longer term than "temporary" implies. Brembo's orders have fallen drastically, and signs of recovery have yet to materialize.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Tonneau Covers

TONNEAU COVER is a bed cover for a pickup truck. They can be hard or soft. Hard Tonneau Covers are usually hinge or fold. Tonneau Covers were used for an open rear passenger compartment of an SUV or truck and, by extension, a body style incorporating such a compartment. Tonneau is a French word which means cask, container, or cover. Most Tonneau Covers were fixed in place as an optional element at purchase, but some Tonneau Covers could be removed and customized. Early Tonneau Covers had a rear-facing hinged door but single or dual side doors were soon introduced to the Tonneau Cover market.

Hard - peak your truck bed with security and best looks. It is typically equipped with heavy-duty locks and durable shocks. Hard tonneau covers boast the best materials, too. Most hard tonneau covers can be paint-matched to your truck. Choosing to buy and fit a hard tonneau cover is without a doubt the correct decision. Tonneau covers made from other materials, no matter how well they are made, just aren't as weather-proof, securable, durable and as good looking as a hard tonneau covers.

Tonneau Cover Installation

Installing a Tonneau Cover is easy! Most Tonneau Covers don’t require drilling. Soft Tonneau Covers are the easiest to install — They can be installed in less than 20 minutes. Folding Tonneau Covers may require a little additional effort as they need some side supports that are aligned to the truck rails and these usually need some work and a little drilling. Hard top Tonneau Covers and Retractable Tonneau Covers take the most time for installation. These usually require some drilling to mount the corner bolts and the rest of the hardware.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Definition: Auto / Automobile

Auto is short for automobile, this is use in transporting private or public passengers, its made up of wheels and engines that makes it run. Its widely define specifically that designed to run basically on the roads that has a seat for some numbers of people. It has 4 wheels and designed basically for people rather than products.
There are some words use to describe it:
  • auto
  • vehicle
  • car
  • automobile
  • jeep
  • truck
  • SUV (Sports Utility Vehicle)
  • Automotive

There are different kind of vehicles that has such speed and physical feature to make it look good. Most car owners choose those car that can last longer.

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Saturday, January 24, 2009

All Terrain Off-Road Tires

Designed for extreme off-road conditions and little else, rock crawling and mud terrain truck tires employ aggressive tread designs that extend to the sidewalls, giant lugs with deep voids, and reinforced sidewall construction to create tires that will grip any surface and remain durable in the process.

Extreme terrain offroad tires typically carry many of the same features, and consequently many mud terrain tires make excellent rock crawling tires, and vice versa. Extreme terrain offroad tires come in either radial or bias ply, but do their job best in a low air pressure bias ply, which allows the tread to conform to surfaces for increased traction.

Yet despite that extreme terrain offroad tires are composed of durable, cut and puncture resistant compounds, they usually do not produce very much mileage when driven on the street, particularly at high speeds. In addition, due to the wild tread designs and huge lugs, extreme terrain tires can cause a bumpy ride and are quite noisy on the road.


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Thursday, January 8, 2009

The Bentley SenseS

The Bentley SenseS

Bentley SenseS, a future car concept that aims to integrate the driver and the vehicle as one with the help of genetic engineering, biotechnology and artificial intelligence. This concept car is unique and special and custom crafted to match the needs of each individual user. The car grows and learns along with its driver and becomes a machine that recognizes the needs, emotion and feelings of its driver without any external assistance.


Bentley SenseS: future car concept


The Future Machine:

Designed by Arturo Peralta, this Bentley concept of the future roads portrays a flowing design and a wonderful aerodynamic body that reduces the wastage of energy. The SenseS attempts to make a connection with its driver and in course of time recognize him and understand all his feelings and emotions. Rather than being a car, it acts more like your loyal steed and becomes a part of your daily drive.