Ford developing talking vehicles for safer driving

Posted: 28 Jan 2011 01:11 AM PST


Ford are continuing with their pursuit of implementing new, safer technologies into their vehicles with a system called “intelligent vehicles”, the company will be building prototypes for demonstrations of this new system across the US.

This intelligent vehicles, or vehicle-to vehicle communications is a system that allows vehicles to communicate with each other.

"Ford believes intelligent vehicles that talk to each other through advanced Wi-Fi are the next frontier of collision avoidance innovations that could revolutionize the driving experience and hold the potential of helping reduce many crashes," said Sue Cischke, group vice president, Sustainability, Environment and Safety Engineering.

An October report from the NHTSA estimates the technology could be of benefit in as many as 4,336,000 light-vehicle crashes each year. The demo vehicles will hit the road in the spring, making stops at major technology hubs around the country.

The technology employs the use of wireless communications on a channel secured by the FCC to detect and warn drivers of potentially dangerous roadway scenarios.

Ford is partnering with a number of other automakers, the federal government, and local and county road commissions to create a common language so that all vehicles can come to communicate using one standard.

"Ford has laid the groundwork to give vehicles a voice with SYNC and Wi-Fi technology," said Jim Vondale, director, Ford Automotive Safety Office. "Now we're working with other automakers and government leaders worldwide to develop common standards globally to bring intelligent vehicles to market quicker and more affordably."

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Ferrari FXX Evoluzione sells for $2.1 million

Posted: 28 Jan 2011 01:01 AM PST


One of the cars that went for big bucks at the Barrett-Jackson auction last weekend was a 2006 Ferrari FXX Evoluzione, its final winning bid was $2.1 million US dollars.

There where only ever 30 units of the 860 horsepower Ferrari FXX built, but do you think this 5 year old supercar is really worth 2.1 million? Let us know your thoughts in the comments box below…

The second highest priced car to be auctioned off was a 1953 Fiat 8V Supersonic – that went for $1.7 million.

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Mini Paceman gets go ahead for production

Posted: 28 Jan 2011 12:47 AM PST

concept car

BMW has confirmed that they will be putting into production the Mini Paceman, according to resources this coupe crossover will be produced by Magna Steyr, which already builds the Mini Countryman. 

The paper quoted BMW development head Klaus Draeger as saying that Magna Steyr has won a contract to build the Paceman model.

The decision came about to build the Paceman in Graz as the auto plant is already technically based on the Countryman.

Production of the Mini Paceman will start in late 2012 with sales to start in 2013. While annual production capacity has yet to be finalized it is reported that Mini are planning on producing 20,000 units a year.

Incase you missed our previous article on the Mini Paceman here is a quick refresher: 
Power for the Mini Paceman Concept comes from a John Cooper Works 1.6L twin-scroll 4-cylinder turbocharged engine making 211 hp and 192 lb-ft of torque. Torque can be increased to 207 lb-ft with the Overboost function.

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Porsche Panamera 4S Exclusive Middle East Edition

Posted: 27 Jan 2011 07:00 PM PST

sports car

Sports car maker – Porsche were also present at the 2011 Qatar Motor Show and revealed the Porsche Panamera 4S Exclusive Middle East Edition. Porsche are only building 66 of these special editions and they will only be available in the Middle east.

The Panamera 4S Exclusive Middle East Edition is still powered by the same 4.8-liter V8 engine as the standard 4S and comes equipped with the Sport Chrono Plus package.

sports car

What makes this Panamera exclusive is the Carrera White exterior, 20-inch 911 Turbo II wheels, red-leather upholstery, special floor mats, carbon fiber trim and a plaque on the sill with the unique model number.

You can bet they’ll fetch a hefty price, and that they’ll most probably sell out almost as soon as the order books are opened.

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Hyundai becoming one of the largest automakers

Posted: 27 Jan 2011 04:48 PM PST

Hyundai is an automaker that is growing rapidly, they have risen to the forefront of the automotive world, becoming the 4th largest automaker worldwide and the fastest growing as of last year.

Hyundai has changed our perception by, well, being smart. The south Korean born company offers substance for value, proving that a brand can rise from the ashes of old Letterman monologues to become an industry leader.

US sales topped 500,000 vehicles last year.  Here's how.

QUALITY. Easy enough. Hyundai found its niche within the market by offering its version of 'affordable luxury' and it worked because their cars did get better. With gaudy accolades like Sonata's ascension into Car and Driver's 10 best cars for 2011, what's not to like?  Buyers took notice of this trend towards excellence and trust ensued.

BECAUSE OF THE TIMES. Capitalize on a weak and wary economy by flexing America's Best Warranty and the Hyundai Assurance Program, which provide both stability and a cushion to fall on respectively (just in case).  Lose your job, return your car; the buyback guarantee just makes sense to consumers.  Plus this makes Hyundai the good guy. All this protection makes the Accent, Sonata, and Elantra, EPA mpg leaders in their respective classes, risk free investments.

AESTHETICS. The newer Hyundai models just look better. Who needs the Mercedes Benz symbol when 10 feet and thousands of dollars away your Hyundai emits a healthy glow created by looking just as good (and running clean)?
You will find something you'll like amongst the range. Variations on older models like the Accent 3 door or Elantra Touring gives buyers options plus the satisfaction of knowing that they won't look like they compromised.

THE VOICE. Brilliant.  What better celebrity than Jeff Bridges to soothe the public's ears? His voice says 'It's alright, Hyundai's got your back.' He probably even drives one.

LUXURY REDEFINED. Have you seen the Equus? Hyundai is confident enough to trot its equine inspired beast to American audiences this year, making them a player in the 'super luxury' realm with Mercedes, BMW and the rest of the elite.  This says as much about where they are as anything. Plus, the owner's manual comes as an iPad app. It's like the little cousin who was once picked on, but stayed up late at night working out and studying until one day you encounter a refined, adult version of the kid we once knew.

Hyundai abides.  And the public thanks them.

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Corrosion problems force Ford to recall Windstar minivans

Posted: 27 Jan 2011 04:10 AM PST


Ford Motor Company have stated that they are recalling more than 400,000 Windstar minivans to replace brackets and mounts which could eventually separate from the vehicle’s subframe and cause a driver to lose control.

The recall will include 425,288 Windstar minivans from the 1999-2003 model year that were sold in 22 cold-weather states and the District of Columbia.

Ford said there have been seven crashes and five minor injuries connected to these faulty parts.

Since August, Ford has recalled more than 600,000 minivans in the U.S. and Canada to address an issue with rear axles that can corrode and break. The NHTSA has been investigating corrosion problems in the minivans from the 1999-2003 model years. It said that the Windstar is still under review by the agency.

The recall is limited to parts of America where road salt is used during the winter. States include: Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Utah, Vermont, West Virginia and Wisconsin.

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Pagani Huayra video with engine sounds

Posted: 27 Jan 2011 04:00 AM PST


Supercar maker – Pagani recently unveiled pictures and details of the all new Huayra and the lucky guys at EVO Magazine were given a special opportunity to check out the car in person. Here is a short video clip from EVO showing the new Pagani Huayra close up along with roaring engine sounds.

Incase you missed the previous post here is a refresher:
The Pagani Huayra is powered by a Mercedes-Benz AMG 6.0L twin-turbo V12 engine making 700-hp with a maximum torque of 740 lb-ft. Mated to a 7-speed sequential cross transmission with AMT robotic system driving programs, the 2,970 pound Huayra is capable of hitting a top speed of 230 mph.

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Volkswagen launch gold edition Touaregs

Posted: 27 Jan 2011 03:05 AM PST


Volkswagen has presented two gold edition Touaregs at the 2011 Qatar Motor Show, the Race Touareg 3 Qatar and the Volkswagen Touareg Gold Edition.

The Volkswagen Race Touareg 3 Qatar is a street legal version of the Dakar Rally race car and can hit 62 mph in less than 6 seconds. It features a two meter wide body which is slightly modified for road use and runs on 18-inch wheels from BBS. On the inside, the Race Touareg 3 Qatar was completely redesigned, leaving only the safety cage untouched.

The Volkswagen Touareg Gold Edition has been given features in 24-carat gold. The exterior includes custom 22-inch wheels, roof rails, protective guard strips and window frames, mirror caps and parts of the air intake frame and a ‘Touareg V8 signature and boot sill trim.

Like the Race Touareg 3 Qatar, this SUV’s exterior is painted in ‘Magic Morning.’ The interior of this special edition SUV has been kitted out with 24-carat gold accents and switches along with a ‘Luna’ trim color.

For more information read the Volkswagen press release below and tell us in the comments box which Touareg you would prefer to own..

Press Release:

Key aspects: Volkswagen presents world exclusive Touareg in Qatar

  • Race Touareg 3 Qatar: street legal version of the Dakar Rally race car
  • Touareg Gold Edition: 24-carat gold makes this SUV one-of-a-kind

Wolfsburg / Doha, 26 January 2011 – At the first Qatar Motor Show (26 – 29 January), Volkswagen is presenting two exclusive SUV concept cars for the first time. The common denominator of these all-wheel drive vehicles: No compromises! Show car number 1 is a slightly tamer version of the Touareg 3 that started in the Dakar Rally at the beginning of January; this 228 kW / 310 PS Volkswagen could very well be the world’s most talented street-legal SUV. Show car number 2 is the Touareg Gold Edition – many of its parts have been upgraded with 24-carat gold; this 265 kW Volkswagen (360 PS) is debuting as one of the highest quality SUVs ever. The cost of these concept cars? Priceless. Yet…

Race Touareg 3 Qatar

This is a genuine Rally motorsport vehicle, like the one that was still touring South America in the Dakar Rally two weeks ago and was built to withstand the toughest rally race in the world. The vehicle now being shown in Qatar is a version of the Race Touareg 3 – an SUV that can sprint to 100 km/h in less than six seconds – that is legally approved for use on public roadways. The just over two metre wide body was slightly modified for road use. Instead of 16-inch wheels, new 18-inch wheels from BBS with a gold look are being used. The “Race Touareg” signature – also in a golden colour – stretches the entire length of the vehicle’s sides. In turn, it is perfectly coordinated with the exterior paint in “Magic Morning,” a white that has a slight gold shimmer to it.

The interior was completely redesigned; all that remained unmodified was the safety cage. Without compromises also means an interior that offers easy controls and is ergonomic. The interior has an extremely well-organised appearance with focus on the driving machine, and it is equipped with Recaro racing bucket seats. Designers created an interior in so-called “Stealth look” that is reminiscent of the aircraft of the same name. In tribute to the Dakar Rally, the Dakar victories are etched in the anodised aluminium of the centre console, right next to the “Race Touareg” signature.

Other trim elements are treated in Matt Carbon. Tuned to this is the roll cage in “Serpentino Grey Metallic.” Interior designers have upholstered the seat side supports and the door trim panels with Nubuk leather in “Black” and “Pure Grey,” while the centre seat panels are made from perforated Nappa leather in “Titan Black.” Additional accents include the two-tone seams and silver piping on the seat covers and safety-related items painted in “Tornado Red.” The only other ingredient that is needed is some time to explore the world on a “360 degree route” in this uncompromising car.

Touareg Gold Edition

The Touareg Gold Edition would certainly be able to handle a journey around the world – but bear in mind, this car should only be parked where there is good surveillance. That is because – living up its name – certain areas of this SUV are upgraded with 24-carat gold. On the outside, they include the custom designed 22-inch wheels, roof rails, protective guard strips and window frames, mirror caps and parts of the air intake frame, “Touareg V8″ signature and boot sill trim. Like the Race Touareg 3 Qatar, this SUV is also painted in “Magic Morning” body colour.

Inside, 24-carat gold also adorns many of the car’s accents and switches, making the entire car unique. The interior design itself has a pleasant, bright appearance in the “Luna” trim colour. The Alcantara roofliner shows this colour as does the Nappa leather of the seats, which is decorated with ornamental stitch detailing.

On the other hand, the dashboard is trimmed in a natural brown leather; contrasting seams in “Magnolia” colour perfect the colour scheme. Natural brown with leather inserts in “Luna” adorn the floor mats. Automotive craftsmanship at its finest is reflected in the Walnut Burr accents with genuine gold marquetry – also crafted into an ornamental pattern. This is in keeping with the general image of the Touareg, which – in the “normal” production version – is one of the most sophisticated SUVs in the world.

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Ariel Atom V8 review by Top gear: Video

Posted: 27 Jan 2011 03:00 AM PST

test drive

This video shows James may from Top gear review the incredibly fast Ariel Atom V8, not only does he test drive it but he also races it against the Lexus LFA and the Lamborghini Gallardo Superleggera.

The Ariel Atom is powered by a 3.0L supercharged V8 engine making that kicks out 500 hp and because of its low weight, it is in the same performance league as the Bugatti Veyron.

Watch the Top Gear video below to see what Captain Slow has to say about the Ariel Atom V8.

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