- Dakar: Giniel de Villiers looks forward to January
- Grab a 2011 Volkswagen Jetta for $5,995 on Gilt
- Audi A1 receives five stars in the Euro NCAP crash test
- 2011 Porsche 911 GT3 RSR debut
Posted: 14 Dec 2010 08:00 AM PST
A challenging combination of familiar and new stages awaits the Volkswagen factory drivers during the 2011 Dakar Rally.
Giniel de Villiers (ZA), first “Diesel” winner of the rally in a Volkswagen Race Touareg with co-driver Dirk von Zitzewitz (D) in 2009, particularly looks forward to the 2011 “Dakar”. He has special memories of the tenth stage.
The 176 kilometer long tenth stage between Copiapó in Chile and Chilecito in Argentina does not appear to be particularly long. However, after crossing the Andes towards the east the competitors are faced with a real sea of sand dunes around Fiambalá. Giniel de Villiers opened up a decisive lead on the way to victory along this difficult stage in January 2009. “Obviously I still remember this stage well,” says the South African. “Like then, the route of the twelfth stage ran from Fiambalá to La Rioja. The stage was difficult, but it went well and my co-driver Dirk von Zitzewitz made up a lot of time for us just before the finish when he found the fastest route while others were still searching. It was this route that effectively decided the winner of the 2009 Dakar Rally. We arrived at the stage finish almost 17 minutes ahead of the next competitors. It was a fantastic feeling!”
The so-called “white dunes” are regarded as special challenge. “The greatest difficulty is that they are so incredibly soft,” remembers the Volkswagen factory driver. “The highest temperatures of the entire rally are probably encountered there. As a result the sand is particularly soft. Sometimes it is even difficult to reach the crest of a dune because the sand is so loose. You have to consider just exactly where you will cross a dune. Furthermore, the entire stage is technically demanding, which is why the average speed is so low.” It is not only the Volkswagen Race Touareg 3 that must produce top form under such conditions. “The most important thing is to be physically fit,” emphasizes Giniel de Villiers. “I do a lot of sport before the race. If you are in top physical condition it also much easier mentally. Luckily I can train at home in South Africa before the rally, where temperatures are similar to those experienced during the Dakar Rally. This is really important.”
- Volkswagen Motorsport
Posted: 14 Dec 2010 07:26 AM PST
Beginning December 15th, Gilt Groupe, partnering with Volkswagen of America, will sell three all-new 2011 Jettas to its members. Each day beginning at noon ET, one car will be sold at an affordable price of $5,995. Volkswagen dropped the “1” from the incredible starting price of $15,995, further delivering on its “Great for the Price of Good” message. The flash sale will occur on three consecutive days. Volkswagen is the first automotive brand to be sold on Gilt, or any flash sale site in the U.S.
“We are extremely excited to be partnering with Volkswagen to sell the all-new Jetta,” said Carl Sparks, President, Gilt Groupe. “Every day we offer insider access to a variety of exclusive products, and this sale allows us to extend that with the opportunity to buy a sophisticated and stylish car at an insider price.”
“Partnering with Gilt was a natural fit for Volkswagen as both brands have customers who value style, sophistication, and quality products at an attainable price,” said Tim Ellis, Vice President of Marketing, Volkswagen of America, Inc. “By creating a special price of $5,995 for each Jetta on Gilt, Volkswagen has taken our tagline, ‘Great for the Price of Good’ to a new level that will certainly create excitement and attention.”
On December 15th, the sale will only be accessible through Gilt mobile applications on the iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, and Android devices. On December 16th and 17th, the sale will take place on Gilt.com as well as through the mobile applications. Each Jetta will be presented in a one of a kind “Gilt Gold” wrap and nearly $18,000 in proceeds from the Jettas sold will be donated to the charity Dress for Success. Post-sale, Volkswagen will offer Gilt members who add the Jetta to their “Wait List” a special incentive that can be redeemed at participating Volkswagen dealerships nationwide.
The all-new 2011 Jetta delivers sophisticated style, precision German engineering, and Carefree Maintenance, all at an extremely accessible starting price starting at $15,995. In addition, the Jetta offers best-in-class rear legroom and features clean lines, refined side architecture, and premium style combined with Volkswagen’s trademark precision German engineering. The all-new 2011 Jetta sets a new standard in its class and became available in U.S. showrooms in October.
To access this sale you must be a member of Gilt. To become a member log onto www.gilt.com/vw
Posted: 14 Dec 2010 06:53 AM PST
The Euro NCAP consortium tested the passive crash safety of the new Audi A1 and awarded it the top score of five stars. The results for adult protection in a frontal, rear or side collision, as well as for child safety and pedestrian protection, place the new Audi A1 among the safest vehicles in its category.
The passive vehicle safety of the new Audi model in the subcompact class was thoroughly tested by Euro NCAP. The consortium is made up of international representatives of European transport ministries, automobile associations, insurers and consumer protection organizations, and performs comprehensive studies of the crash performance of new cars.
Euro NCAP’s demanding test requirements far exceed the standards of European lawmakers. The testers gave the A1 scores for adult occupant protection in frontal, rear and side impact collisions that easily earned the vehicle the top rating of five stars. The very good scores for child occupant protection underscore the excellent results.
Established in 1997, the Euro NCAP consortium performs crash tests with all vehicles on the European market. Its mission is to systematically improve road safety and thus protect the lives of all road users.
Ensuring protection for pedestrians and cyclists is an important concern for Audi. A vehicle front end specially designed for this requirement helps to mitigate the consequences of a collision, and this is reflected in the good performance of the Audi A1 in the Euro NCAP test.
Audi also places tremendous value on active safety systems for accident avoidance. A standard high-performance ESP stabilization system with electronic limited slip differential was therefore one of the first items in the requirements specification for the development of the Audi A1. This system is responsible for the A1’s high stability and very neutral handling in corners. The A1 scores extremely well in independent comparison tests.
- Audi AG
Posted: 14 Dec 2010 06:12 AM PST
The Porsche 911 GT3 RSR takes off into the new motorsport season with extensive modifications. The 2011 version of the world’s most successful GT race car celebrated its international premiere at the “Night of Champions” party held at the R&D Centre in Weissach to mark the end of the motorsport season. Priority in the further development of the GT3 RSR was given to the newly designed aerodynamics at the front and rear, changes to the suspension kinematics and to the engine.
The 4.0-litre, six-cylinder boxer engine now delivers 455 hp (335 kW) at 7,800 revs, five horsepower more than its predecessor. The power increase results from an engine management system which adapts even better to different fuel grades, as well as a redesigned exhaust system and a modified air intake housing. Moreover, the drivability of the famously efficient engine has undergone further improvements. Maximum revs remain unchanged at 9,400 rpm.
Clearly visible are the modifications to the front. A new front lip provides higher downforce at the front axle. The front wheels are now wider with the rims growing from 11 to 12 inches giving additional grip and less of an understeering tendency. The position of the rear wing and the shape of the wing mounting also underwent optimization and were adapted to the new rear fairing with additional air outlet louvers. The rear lid was also redesigned for optimized air ducting. Like the 911 GT3 Cup and the GT3 R, the RSR has now been equipped with the LED rear lights taken from the latest 911 road-legal cars.
The 911 GT3 RSR joins the 911 GT3 R and the 911 GT3 Cup as the top model of Porsche Motorsport’s product range. The successful long distance racer from Weissach can be ordered now at a price of 410,000 Euro plus country-specific value added tax. All 2011 modifications are available as a kit for GT3 RSR cars from the 2010 season.
Technical description Porsche GT3 RSR (2011 model year)
Rear: Multi-arm axle with rigidly mounted axle sub-frame; Sachs four-way gas pressure dampers; double coil springs (main and auxiliary); rear axle tie-bar reinforced and infinitely adjustable; adjustable sword-type anti-roll bar. Complete suspension infinitely adjustable (height, camber, track).
- Porsche Motorsport
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