2011 Ram 3500 Heavy Duty at Chicago auto show

Posted: 11 Feb 2011 02:59 AM PST

Another of Dodge’s vehicles debuting at the Chicago auto show was the new Ram Heavy Duty truck.

The new Ram Heavy Duty pickup is powered by a 6.7L 6-cylinder Cummins Turbo Diesel engine which produces 350 hp and 800 lb-ft of torque. When coupled with the ‘Max Tow’ towing-optimization package, the Ram 3500 Heavy Duty maximum trailer weight is 22,700, the highest trailer weight in its class.

The Ram 3500 Heavy Duty can also carry a gross combined weight rating of 30,000 pounds. Chrysler also points out that the Ram is the only heavy-duty diesel pickup that doesn't require Diesel Exhaust Fluid to pass emissions.

Ram Truck Brand President and CEO, Fred Diaz had this to say about the heavy duty truck.

"A Ram Heavy Duty truck owner's most important concern is towing capability – 79 percent of them rate towing as extremely important," "Reliability and engine performance are tied for second – named as extremely important by 73 percent of owners. This 800 lb.-ft. performance upgrade — combined with Ram Truck's unsurpassed 5-year, 100,000-mile powertrain warranty and Cummins' proven reputation for reliability – are a direct response to our customers' high expectations. We stand behind our commitment to build great trucks that are best in class."

For more details read the Dodge press release below.

Press Release


Ram Heavy Duty Upgrades Deliver Class-Leading Torque and Towing

  • High Output Cummins Turbo Diesel now rated at 800 lb.-ft. of torque
  • Ram is only heavy-duty diesel pickup that doesn't require Diesel Exhaust Fluid
  • 22,700-lb. maximum trailer tow weight leads the segment
  • Gross Combined Weight Rating increased to 30,000 lbs.
  • Cummins-equipped Ram Trucks offer class-leading diesel exhaust brake

February 9, 2011 , Chicago - Ram Truck today announced a series of upgrades to its Heavy Duty truck line up that will give it outright class supremacy in trailer towing.

Now boasting the ability to pull a segment-leading 22,700-lb. maximum trailer weight, the one-ton Ram 3500 Heavy Duty will get a performance boost to its 6.7-liter Cummins Turbo Diesel Engine that will increase its torque by 23 percent to 800 lb.-ft. and be upfitted with a package of components that will increase its gross combined weight rating (GCWR) to 30,000 lbs.

800 lb.-ft. of High-Output Torque

A new powertrain control module (PCM) with revised performance calibration allows the High-Output 6.7-liter, six-cylinder Cummins Turbo Diesel to reach peak torque at 1,600 rpm and exceed the previous model's output from 1,200 through 2,800 rpm. While peak horsepower remains unchanged (350 @ 3,000 rpm), the engine's new calibration delivers more than 40 additional horsepower at typical highway cruising speeds.

Behind the powerful, High-Output Cummins lies a new higher-rated torque converter. The Ram's new torque converter improves engine/transmission integration for better towing capability on grades and optimizes engine performance.

In addition to the new PCM and torque converter, the 800 lb.-ft. High Output Cummins-powered Ram Heavy Duty trucks receive a new crankshaft damper, reducing engine noise and vibration (NVH).

Ram Trucks with the uprated 800 lb.-ft. Cummins will feature a special "High Output Cummins" badge on their tailgates.

Ram Exclusive: No Diesel Exhaust Fluid Required
Cummins Turbo Diesel-equipped Ram pickups are the only heavy-duty pickups to meet 2010 EPA emissions regulations with an engine and aftertreatment system that has been proven in more than 250,000 customer trucks since 2007 and without the need for Diesel Exhaust Fluid (DEF).

Best-in-Class Maximum Towing
When equipped with the "Max Tow" towing-optimization package, the Ram 3500 Heavy Duty maximum trailer weight is rated up to 22,700 lbs., the highest trailer weight in its class.

Since the launch of the new Ram 2500 and 3500 Heavy Duty for the 2010 model year, towing capability has been the trucks' strong suit, with a long list of towing features including the most powerful standard exhaust brake in the segment (diesel-equipped models). This feature reduces brake fade, prolongs brake life and provides unmatched confidence and safety when hauling heavy loads on downhill grades.

Ram has the largest brakes of any heavy duty pickup; 14.17-in.x1.54-in. front and 14.09-in.x1.34-in. rear with an integrated anti-lock brake system (ABS) that increases brake life and braking stability.

Tow ratings for the Ram 3500 Heavy Duty meet 100 percent of 2013 model year SAE testing standards.

30,000 lbs. GCWR
Dual-rear-wheel-equipped Ram 3500 Heavy Duty pickups with the Max Tow package are now rated at 30,000 lbs. GCWR – up from 24,500 lbs.

For maximum towing, Chrysler Group Powertrain engineers gave the Ram 3500 an improved dual-rear wheel axle with a 4.10 gear ratio, new rear-axle pinion, new helical gears, upgraded bearings and a heat-dissipating, finned aluminum differential cover.

As part of the Max Tow upgrade to the Ram 3500, the truck will also get a new engine-mounted, oil-to-coolant transmission cooler to moderate operating temperatures during trailer towing.

All Ram 2500 and 3500 Heavy Duty pickups will also get upgraded power steering oil coolers to manage the larger loads.

Cummins Turbo Diesel
If you looked up "bulletproof" in the dictionary, you'd find a picture of the Cummins Turbo Diesel engine. With its inline-six architecture and cast iron block and head, this engine has been providing decades of reliable service in everything from agriculture and construction equipment to over-the-road heavy trucks.

Ram Heavy Duty pickup trucks powered by Cummins diesel engines have been the benchmark of power, durability, reliability and fuel economy since 1989, the first model year that Ram offered the Cummins engine. This partnership is defined by more than two decades of long-lasting, hard-working history – more than any other diesel pickup combination in the marketplace.

The one-ton Ram 3500 Heavy Duty comes standard with the Cummins Turbo Diesel.

Ram 2500 Heavy Duty pickups equipped with the optional 6.7-liter Cummins Turbo Diesel and automatic transmission (5.7-liter HEMI engine is standard) also get the 800 lb.-ft. performance upgrade. Because it uses a single rear-wheel axle, Ram 2500 GCWR remains unchanged at 22,000 lbs. Manual transmission-equipped Ram Heavy Duty pickups retain their 350 hp./610 lb.-ft. of torque performance ratings. Max Tow is available for regular and crew cab Ram 3500s only.

High Output Cummins-equipped Ram 2500 and 3500 Heavy Duty pickups and the 30,000 GCWR Max Tow package will go on sale in the second quarter 2011.

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Ford sues Ferrari over F150 name used on Formula One Race Car

Posted: 11 Feb 2011 02:45 AM PST

pickup truck

Ford Motor company is currently taking Ferrari to court over the use of the name F150 being used on Ferrari’s latest Formula one car.

The Ford F-150 has been the company’s best-selling pickup truck model for many years and so when Ferrari recently announced that they will be naming their 2011 Formula One race car F-150, Ford wasn’t very happy.

Ford has sued Ferrari for trademark infringement and cybersquatting. The automaker filed the lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Detroit. In the suit, Ford says that it registered the F-150 trademark in 1995 and that it has ‘suffered irreparable harm’ due to Ferrari’s actions. Ford wants Ferrari to stop using F150 on any products in the U.S. and is also seeking $100,000 in damages under the Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act, because it believes the domain will confuse consumers.

Ferrari decided to name their F1 car f150 to honor the 150th anniversary of Italy's unification.

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Nissan ESFLOW Concept unveiled at Chicago auto show

Posted: 11 Feb 2011 02:25 AM PST

Nissan has unveiled a new concept car at this years Chicago motor show, called the Nissan ESFLOW this new concept is 100% electric.

The Nissan ESFLOW concept car uses a similar technology pioneered by the Nissan LEAF but uses a rear-wheel-drive setup and two electric-motors that are placed above the axis of the rear-wheels. Nissan says that the motor produces enough torque to push the ESFLOW from 0-62 mph in under 5 seconds.

When fully charged, the Nissan ESFLOW can travel a total of 150 miles (241km). The electric motors in concept car are powered by the same lithium-ion battery packs used in the Nissan LEAF, but in the ESFLOW the packs are located besides the axis of the front and rear-wheels.

Nissan has not yet confirmed if the ESFLOW will go into production but in their press release Nissan stated that it is “production ready”, so if this concept car gets the go ahead we may see the ESFLOW on the road very soon.

For more information read the Hyundai press release after the jump.

Press Release



NISSAN ESFLOW Concept puts the spark into electric vehicles

It looks like a sports car, handles like a sports car and performs like one too. But ESFLOW is different than every other sports car yet built: It’s electric. Using technology pioneered in the award-winning Nissan LEAF, the EV concept shows that driving can still be as much fun tomorrow as it is today.

At a Glance

  • ESFLOW – a pure EV sports car concept
  • Rear-wheel drive two-seater
  • Two electric motors, each driving a rear wheel
  • Laminated lithium-ion batteries mounted low for best weight distribution
  • Dramatic styling with wraparound windscreen for unobstructed visibility
  • 0-100km/h in under 5 seconds
  • Over 240kms on one charge

The Nissan ESFLOW
Nissan has a reputation for creating some of the most exhilarating sports cars on the market. Nissan has also developed the world’s first practical Zero Emission family car, the Nissan LEAF.

Now Nissan has put that expertise together. It has captured the excitement of a sports car and the environmental benefits of an electric vehicle and blended them into one dramatic two-seater concept: ESFLOW.

ESFLOW has been created from the ground up as a pure electric vehicle, to give an idea how a Zero Emission sports car of the future might look. Living ecologically has often been seen as an act of austerity – to save one’s environmental conscience sacrifices must be made. ESFLOW is here to address that misconception.

Owning an ecologically sound car does not have to come at the expense of driving enjoyment. The briefest glance at the ESFLOW is enough to tell you what kind of car it is: a long bonnet leading into a steeply raked, wrap around windscreen, the compact cabin placing the occupants bang on the car’s centre of gravity, hunched arches over ultra-low profile tyres wrapped around six spoke wheels. ESFLOW is unmistakably a sports car, and those in the know will recognize its heritage – hints of classic and contemporary Nissan sports cars abound.

Vitally, ESFLOW is not an existing ICE (internal combustion engine) powered vehicle that has been adapted to run on electricity, but a sports car that’s been designed from the outset as a Zero Emission vehicle. This means that Nissan’s forward thinking designers have had free rein to place the power train and batteries in the optimum positions to benefit the car’s handling and performance and enhancing the thrill of driving.

The Car
The ESFLOW is based on existing technology, implemented in innovative ways. An attractive, head turning composite body covers an aluminium chassis, incorporating its own roll cage. The powertrain unit, which employs the same technologies installed in the Nissan LEAF, is tuned to offer a sporty driving experience.

The Powertrain
ESFLOW is rear-wheel drive and it runs on two motors. The car’s graceful proportions allow the twin electric motors to be placed above the axis of the rear wheels, in a mid-ship position,. These motors independently control the left and right wheels, and so the torque is optimized to ensure outstanding vehicle stability and control as well as efficient power regeneration. The motors produce enough torque in an instant for it to reach a 100kph in under 5 seconds.

Power for the motors comes from the same laminated lithium-ion battery packs used in the Nissan LEAF, but in ESFLOW the packs are located along the axis of the front and rear wheels. This centralizes the mass of the car, and thus its rotation point, close to the driver’s hips. These cleverly positioned batteries enable the car to travel over 240km on one charge.

The Chassis
An aluminium chassis has been built around the drive train, taking full advantage of the opportunities that Zero Emission electric propulsion provides. Power cells are incorporated in such a way that they benefit ESFLOW’s strength and poise, not detract from them. Indeed, unlike a conventional fuel tank, batteries do not get lighter as they provide energy, so the car’s weight distribution remains constant throughout a drive.

The high waistline afforded by the ESFLOW’s classic sports car proportions allows strong, yet unobtrusive roll bars incorporated in to the structure behind the seats to safely take the entire load of the car in the event of a roll over, negating the need for obtrusive, thick, reinforced A-pillars and the blind spots they inevitably create.

This almost unobstructed view ahead will not be unfamiliar to fighter pilots, and just as such pilots speak of “strapping their planes on to their backs”, we hope ESFLOW owners will also feel the car to be an extension of their bodies, reacting to their slightest whims. The driver must be at the centre of the sports car both physically and metaphorically.

The Body
The ESFLOW is undoubtedly an attractive car. Crisp, clean lines not only convey the purity of its sporting potential, but suggest the clarity of electric power. The colour scheme chosen for the concept car is inspired by glaciers – highly reflective solidified liquid with blue tints in its shadows. Like its ZEV concept forebears and contemporary stable mate the ESFLOW’s headlights and Nissan emblem are tinted cool blue. The six spoke wheels contain blue carbon inserts while the same material adorns the side sill, roof mounted lip spoiler and lower rear bumper.

Blue LEDs accentuate the futuristic lights slashed into the bodywork both front and rear. Where the Nissan LEAF’s protrusive headlights are used to guide airflow around the door mirrors, this is not needed on ESFLOW as the mirrors have been replaced with minute rear view cameras at the base of its A-pillars. The ESFLOW’s front lights do protect a secret of their own however: flip out charging points built in to the air ducts beneath.

The Interior
Ecological minimalism need not come at the expense of luxury. The cabin of the ESFLOW is clean and open and weight saving has been a priority throughout its design, but it is still a comfortable and pleasant place to sit. By far the heaviest components in modern cars’ interiors are the steel framed, thickly upholstered and increasingly motorized seats. In ESFLOW the seats are sculpted into the rear bulkhead of the car, negating the need for a heavy frame. This of course means that they are immobile, but this is of no consequence as the fly-by-wire steering and pedals adjust electrically to the best spot to suit each individual driver’s size and preferred driving position.

The seats themselves are upholstered in gold leather and perforated gold suede while the doors are trimmed in dark blue leather and suede. The blue and gold motif, the colour of sparks, is continued across the dashboard, which is also adorned with silver carbon trim, and features four multifunction illuminated LCD displays.

The Driver
Daniel, an ESFLOW owner, works in tech, but lives for the weekend. On Friday night after work, he gets behind the wheels of his ESFLOW which instantly links with his pocket PDA and determines the fastest route to his girlfriend’s home. Finding street side parking is a synch as the ESFLOW’s compact dimensions allow it to slip in to the narrowest of spaces. On Saturday he drives to a popular club to exhibit his DJ skills and his friends are impressed by his cool EV sports car.

On Sunday he drives through the mountains for leisure. ESFLOW’s superb weight distribution and unobstructed view ahead enables him to effortlessly nail every apex, every time. His descent from the mountains is more relaxed and he allows the ESFLOW to overrun on the long sweeping curves, turning the potential energy he and the car gained climbing up the gradients back in to electrical energy he can use once he hits the roads around Barcelona.

As his ESFLOW sips energy in its garage Daniel prepares himself for the week ahead, batteries fully recharged.

Geneva Motor Show
The ESFLOW concept will be unveiled at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show (3-13 March) where it will share the Nissan stand with a number of other innovative and exciting newcomers – but with one major difference: these are production ready.

Zero and low emission mobility is represented by Nissan LEAF, the 2011 European Car of The Year and the first pure electric CoTY winner, and the advanced Micra DIG-S. The latest version of Nissan’s definitive city car is powered by a supercharged 1.2-litre direct injection petrol three-cylinder engine which produces just 95 g/km CO2.

Sports car excitement is reflected in the latest version of the GT-R supercar and a special version of its baby brother, the 370Z GT Edition. Underlining the breadth and depth of the Nissan range, the stand will also feature Nissan’s best selling segment-busting crossovers – Juke, QASHQAI and Murano – as well as city cars Note and Pixo and the X-TRAIL, Pathfinder and Navara 4x4s.

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2012 Hyundai Genesis gets a more powerful V8

Posted: 11 Feb 2011 02:08 AM PST

Visually there are not many styling changes on the new 2012 Hyundai Genesis but it has received quite a few mechanical upgrades. One of the major changes for the 2012 model is the introduction of a 5.0L direct-injection V8 engine that will be available exclusively for the model.

The 2012 Hyundai Genesis R-Spec model will be powered by a new Tau 5.0L V8 engine that develops 429 hp at 6,400 rpm and 376 lb-ft of torque at 5,000 rpm. Controlling this power is an 8-speed automatic transmission which achieves around 16 mpg in the city and 25 on the highway.

The R-Spec version also includes a set of 19-inch machined-finish alloy wheels, optional Michelin Pilot Sport PS2 summer performance tires and a sport-tuned suspension and steering calibrations.

The 2012 Hyundai Genesis will also be available with an upgraded 3.8L Lambda V6 engine with direct-injection technology which gets a 15 percent increase in horsepower to 333 hp and a maximum torque of 291 lb-ft. This model also comes with an 8-speed automatic transmission but has a better fuel efficiency of 27 to 29 mpg on the highway.

A slightly less powerful 4.6 liter V8 engine will also be available on the 2012 Genesis and will also get an 8-speed automatic allowing for a highway fuel-economy of 25 to 26 mpg. Output is increased from 375-hp to 385-hp.

Both the 3.8L and the 4.6L 2012 Hyundai Genesis get suspension damping upgrades for a smoother and tighter ride. Braking has also improved.

Sales of the 2012 Hyundai Genesis will start later this year. Prices will be announced closer to launch date.

For more information and the complete details on the new Genesis range read the Hyundai press release below.

Press Release



New 5.0-liter V8 R-Spec Model, Enhanced Direct Injection V6 Engine and New Eight-speed Transmissions Significantly Improve Driving Dynamics and Refinement

CHICAGO, Feb. 9, 2011 – Hyundai’s award-winning Genesis sedan continues its segment leadership with exterior design improvements, new direct injection technology for its Lambda V6 engine, new eight-speed automatic transmissions, and enhanced chassis tuning. In addition, a new 5.0-liter direct injection V8 engine is now available exclusively with the 5.0 R-Spec model, which includes unique 19-inch machined-finish alloy wheels, optional Michelin Pilot Sport PS2 summer performance tires and sport-tuned transmission, suspension and steering calibrations for exhilarating vehicle dynamics.

2012 Genesis Highlights

  • New 5.0-liter R-Spec Direct Injection V8 performance flagship model added
    • Most powerful Hyundai engine ever with 429 horsepower
    • Unique 19-inch alloy wheel design with premium machined finish
    • Dark chrome headlamp inserts
    • Unique R-Spec sport transmission, suspension and steering calibrations
  • Direct injection technology added to Lambda 3.8-liter V6 engine for 15 percent improved output (333 HP), improved fuel economy and emissions
  • In-house-developed eight-speed automatic transmissions for all engines
  • More aggressive grille and front fascia design
  • New headlight design with LED accents and daytime running lights
  • Sportier rocker panel design
  • Folding mirrors with integrated puddle lamps
  • New, brushed aluminum finish window surround
  • Redesigned rear taillights
  • Redesigned rear fascia with integrated dual asymmetrical exhaust tips
  • New 17-inch alloy wheel design (3.8 model)
  • New interior woodgrain colors for Black, Beige and Saddle leather interiors
  • New Twilight Blue Pearl exterior color (replaces Sapphire Blue Pearl)


The heart of the Genesis 5.0 R-Spec model is a new Tau V8 engine producing 429 horsepower at 6,400 rpm and 376 lb. ft. of torque at 5,000 rpm. This new Tau V8 represents the most powerful Hyundai engine ever, with a higher specific output (85.8 hp/liter) than its normally-aspirated premium luxury competitors. For 2011, the Tau V8 engine family has again been named to the prestigious Ward's Ten Best Engines for the third consecutive time.

Genesis 5.0 Competitive Set 5.0 R-Spec

5.0-liter V8

Lexus GS460 4.6-liter V8 Infiniti M56 5.6-liter V8 M-B E550 5.5-liter V8
Normally-aspirated V8

Specific Output (HP/liter)

85.8 74.3 75.0 69.5

The 5.0-liter cylinder bore was increased from 92 mm to 96 mm over the 4.6-liter bore for a total displacement of 5.0 liters (5,038cc). In addition to the enlarged displacement, direct injection technology has been added. This high-pressure direct injection system (over 2200 psi), dramatically increases power and torque while reducing fuel consumption and emissions. Compression ratio has been increased from 10.4 to 11.5:1 for greater thermal efficiency and output. The Tau also receives a revised bed plate for improved block rigidity and lower NVH as well as camshaft carriers and a roller timing chain to improve valvetrain stability.

Even more, this new V8 still offers all of the premium engine technology from the 4.6-liter V8, including Dual Continuously Variable Valve Timing (D-CVVT), a tuned variable induction system, and low-friction diamond-like coatings (DLC) on piston skirts, rings and tappets. Even with these impressive power increases, fuel economy is estimated at 16 mpg city and 25 mpg highway, nearly matching the 4.6-liter V8 (17 mpg city/26 mpg highway). As an additional point of interest, this same 5.0-liter Tau V8 with eight-speed transmission will replace the current 4.6-liter V8 as the standard powertrain in the 2012 Hyundai Equus premium luxury sedan, on sale this summer.

The Tau 5.0-liter V8 is coupled with a new in-house eight-speed transmission. This new Hyundai-developed transmission adds two additional ratios to enhance acceleration, shifting smoothness, and transmission efficiency by six percent over the former six-speed. All eight-speed transmissions will include SHIFTRONIC® manual shift capability. This new eight-speed transmission is the first offered by a non-luxury branded manufacturer.

In keeping with Hyundai engineering philosophy, the R-Spec also will include more aggressive chassis tuning, matching its corresponding powertrain enhancements for optimal dynamic balance. For enhanced body roll control, front stabilizer bar diameter has been increased from 25 mm to 26 mm, and rear diameter from 18 mm to 19 mm over the 4.6 model. R-Spec will offer a unique sport design 19-inch alloy wheel with premium machined finish and optional Michelin Pilot Sport PS2 summer performance tires. The R-Spec steering calibration has been matched to this unique wheel and tire combination for optimized performance and driving refinement expectations in this segment. To complete the performance package, front brake rotors have increased from 13.0 inches to 13.6 inches over the 2011 4.6 model.

In addition to the more aggressive styling cues for all 2012 Genesis models, R-Spec will offer unique headlights with dark chrome inserts for a more distinctive front appearance. An R-Spec trim designation badge has been added to the rear deck, and black R-Spec embroidered floor mats daily remind the driver of the performance that awaits behind the wheel. Genesis R-Spec only will be offered in three sport-oriented exterior colors: Black Noir, Titanium Gray, and Platinum Metallic, each with Black leather interior and an all-black leather steering wheel for a differentiated sport appearance from the 4.6 model.


In keeping with its 5.0-liter V8 sibling, the Genesis 3.8-liter Lambda engine will receive direct injection (GDI) technology, boosting its output 15 percent from 290 to 333 horsepower, an impressive gain of 43 horsepower with no increase in displacement. In addition, peak torque rises from 264 lb.-ft. to 291 lb.-ft., a generous increase of 27 lb.-ft. from the same 3.8 liters. Compression ratio increases from 10.4:1 to 11.5:1 for greater thermal efficiency. This new direct-injected Lambda V6 produces a higher specific output (87.6 hp/liter) than its normally-aspirated premium luxury competitors.

Genesis 3.8-liter GDI Competitive Set GENESIS

3.8-liter GDI V6

Lexus GS350

3.5-liter V6

BMW 528i

3.0-liter V6

M-B E350

3.5-liter V6

Normally-aspirated V6 Specific Output (hp/liter) 87.6 86.6 80.0 76.6

The 3.8-liter engine retains all of the premium technologies that have made it outstanding since the launch of Genesis: Dual Continuously Variable Valve Timing (D-CVVT), variable induction, all aluminum block and heads, steel timing chain, and iridium-tipped spark plugs. Besides the generous horsepower and torque gains, direct injection technology produces a significant reduction in emissions through a 40 percent reduction in catalyst light-off time. Further, a variable vane oil pump has been fitted to precisely match oil pressure with engine lubrication requirements for increased efficiency at all engine speeds. As a result, 3.8-liter GDI fuel economy increases over seven percent from 27 mpg to 29 mpg on the highway.

Engine Horsepower Torque
Fuel Economy (mpg)
City Highway
Lambda 3.8-liter V6 Direct Injection with eight-speed automatic transmission 290 → 333 264 → 291 18 → TBD 27 → 29

All 3.8-liter engines will be coupled to an in-house-developed eight-speed transmission with SHIFTRONIC and precisely calibrated gear ratios for an overall transmission efficiency gain of six percent. These two additional ratios serve to achieve competing objectives of acceleration and economy without compromise.

For 2012, Genesis’ award-winning Tau 4.6-liter V8 powerplant will now be coupled exclusively with an in-house-developed eight-speed automatic transmission with SHIFTRONIC, adding benefits in acceleration and efficiency. Internal engineering tests estimate this new eight-speed transmission to be six percent more efficient at transferring power than the former 6-speed automatic, increasing highway fuel economy from 25 mpg to 26 mpg.

This same 4.6-liter Tau V8 engine was already significantly improved for 2010 with induction and tuning enhancements increasing peak output from 375 to 385 horsepower. A variable intake system, iridium-tipped spark plugs, anti-knock control, and multi-port injection further add to the sophistication of this engine.

Always seeking to enhance the Genesis driving experience, Hyundai engineers have made further refinements to the 3.8 and 4.6 model suspension damping calibrations. These precise adjustments serve to minimize the traditional compromises between handling precision and ride comfort. In addition, body roll control for the 3.8 model is enhanced, with the rear stabilizer bar diameter increasing from 17 mm to 18 mm. Braking is also improved on both the 3.8 and 4.6 models; the 3.8 model front rotor size increases from 12.6 inches to 13.0 inches, while adding by higher performance 4-piston brake calipers, and the 4.6 model front brake rotors increase from 13.0 inches to 13.6 inches for greater fade resistance.


Not content to rest on their laurels, Hyundai’s design team has sought to make a great Genesis exterior design even better for 2012. For the front view, the front grille has been enhanced, a more aggressive front fascia with larger intake openings was developed, and the headlights have been redesigned, adding LED accents and daytime running lights (DRLs). From the side view, the standard 17-inch alloy wheel design has been freshened and the rocker panels have been refined. In addition, the mirrors now incorporate power-folding and puddle lamp functions, while the side window surround now receives a decidedly sporty brushed aluminum finish. From the rear view, the taillights have been redesigned and new dual asymmetrical exhaust tips are more cleanly integrated with a new bumper fascia.

Maintaining Hyundai’s emphasis on delivering leading safety technology, Genesis boasts world-class active and passive safety features to help both prevent accidents and maximize the well being of its occupants in the event of a collision. Genesis continues the Hyundai tradition of standardizing key life-saving safety technology with Electronic Stability Control (ESC), eight airbags and electronic active head restraints. Active front head restraints have been proven by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety to help prevent whiplash.

Adding to this safety leadership for 2012, Genesis adds new daytime running lamps to all models. Further, Genesis offers a newly-developed Lane Departure Warning System (LDWS), available on the 3.8 Technology package, 4.6 and 5.0 R-Spec models.

Genesis’ total of eight airbags includes advanced dual front airbags, front and rear seat-mounted side-impact airbags, and roof-mounted side curtain airbags for both front and rear outboard seat occupants.

Genesis has a total of eight ultrasonic sensors located on the front and rear bumpers. The sensors, along with the rear backup camera, help detect how close objects are when parking. Distance is indicated on the in-dash screen and accompanied by an audible warning tone.

Genesis is brought to a halt by large four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes with Brake Assist and Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD). Genesis 3.8 models now have large 13.0-inch front rotors with four-piston fixed calipers, while 4.6 and 5.0 models have oversized 13.6-inch front rotors.


Genesis 3.8 Standard Equipment
2012 Genesis also will increase its impressive list of standard equipment, adding headlight LED accents and daytime running lights (DRLs) and outside mirror puddle lamps.

Genesis 3.8 Premium Package
The 3.8 Premium Package will now offer newly-developed power-folding outside mirrors and heated rear seats with console controls. For 2012, the 3.8 Premium package will also include rearview camera, DVD navigation system with seven-inch touchscreen, XM NavTraffic, and 18-inch Hyper Silver split-spoke alloy wheels.

Genesis 3.8 Technology Package
The 3.8 Technology package will continue to satisfy tech-savvy buyers, adding a newly-developed Lane Departure Warning System (LDWS), and thin-film-transistor LCD gauge cluster readout.

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1200 Mile journey in a Lamborghini Countach: Video

Posted: 11 Feb 2011 01:30 AM PST

Most people who own a classic supercar keep them stored away, only to get them out for shows or short drives locally. Well Harry Metcalfe from Evo Magazine is not like most people, he has made a video of a drive from the French Riviera back to the United Kingdom in his Red Lamborghini Countach.

This particular Lamborghini Countach is the QV version and it took around 30 hours for Harry to complete his journey. During the 10 minute video below Harry talks us through what its like to drive the Countach and one of his complaints are the small brakes which feel like they are not strong enough to stop the supercar

Watch the video below to see the highlights of Harry Metcalfe’s journey across europe in a Lamborghini Countach.

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2011 Dodge Durango Heat debuts at Chicago auto show

Posted: 11 Feb 2011 12:44 AM PST

Dodge introduced us to the new 2011 Dodge Durango Heat at the 2011 Chicago Auto Show which has all the aggressive looks of the Durango R/T but without the power of the V8.

The 2011 Dodge Durango Heat has been designed to offer customers the sportier Durango styling but with less power and better fuel consumption. Instead of the R/T’s 5.7L V8 engine sitting under the hood there is a new Chrysler 3.6L Pentastar V6 engine.

This new motor produces 295 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque, it has an estimated fuel-economy of 16 mpg in the city and 23 mpg on the highway.

The exterior of the 2011 Dodge Durango Heat is almost identical to the R/T model with a unique fascia and fog lamps, a color-matched grille and dark headlamps. It also features a color-matched body kit, wheel lips and rear fascia with integrated dual chrome exhaust outlets. The 2011 Durango Heat rides on a set of custom 20-inch Satin Carbon finished wheels.

Prices for the 2011 Dodge Durango Heat start at $30,295 for the rear-wheel-drive model and $32,295 for the all-wheel-drive model.

For more information read the Dodge press release below.

Press Release


Some Like It Hot—Dodge Introduces New Durango Heat

  • Designed to complement the performance-tuned Durango R/T, new five-passenger Heat package with the Pentastar V-6 engine delivers 295 horsepower and up to 23 miles per gallon (mpg)
  • Best-in-class 50 cubic feet of storage behind the second row and performance-tuned to thrill anyone who truly loves to drive
  • New Heat package delivers affordable performance with a starting U.S. Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price of $30,295 (excluding destination charges)

February 9, 2011 , Chicago -Dodge is turning up the heat in the full-size SUV segment, introducing a new affordable performance package for the all-new 2011 Dodge Durango SUV – the Dodge Durango Heat. Designed to complement the performance-tuned Durango R/T, the new Heat package delivers aggressive styling, the high-performing 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine with 295 horsepower and a surprisingly affordable price. With a starting U.S. Manufacturer's Retail Price (MSRP) of $30,295 (excluding destination), the Dodge Durango Heat will be available at dealerships across the country in the Spring of 2011.

"Durango Heat is about handling performance and a street presence that puts the sport in sport- utility," said Ralph Gilles, President and CEO, Dodge Brand – Chrysler Group LLC. "The unibody rear-wheel-drive (available all-wheel-drive), two-row exclusive seating configuration makes this the lightest Durango model. A world-class double wishbone front suspension and multi-link rear suspension make Heat a handling champ that moves out smartly with 295 horsepower, a dual-exhaust, tuned air induction, custom 20-inch Satin Carbon finished wheels while delivering ultimate utility with more storage room at 50 cubic feet than anything it competes with. The Durango Heat also is among the most efficient in its class at 23 miles per gallon on the highway. For the money, there's truly nothing like it on the market."

From the outside, the Durango Heat and the R/T have a striking resemblance. Both feature a unique fascia with fog lamps, a color-matched grille and dark headlamp bezels. The color-matched body kit, wheel lips and rear fascia with integrated dual chrome exhaust outlets, give the Heat a lower stance.

Built on the Durango's new unibody platform, which is 25 percent stiffer than the Durango it replaces, the five-passenger Heat also shares R/T's performance-biased engineering, including its aggressive suspension tuning, performance steering, unique 20-inch wheels with all-season performance tires (three-season high-performance tires for even greater grip and response also are available), a 20-mm lower ride height, tuned dual-exhaust and a modernized interior that holds drivers in their seats.

Where the R/T is powered by the legendary 5.7-liter HEMI V-8 engine, the Heat is powered by the new Pentastar V-6 engine. The 3.6-liter V-6 engine is an all-new design, featuring double-overhead camshafts (DOHC) and a high-pressure die-cast aluminum cylinder block in a 60 degree configuration. Contributing to best-in-class V-6 towing at 6,200 lbs. and a top speed of 130 miles per hour, the engine delivers 295 horsepower (216 kW) at 6,350 rpm and 260 lb.-ft. (353 N•m) of torque at 4,500 rpm. The EPA fuel economy miles per gallon (mpg) (City/Hwy) are 16/23 for the rear-wheel-drive model and 16/22 for the all-wheel-drive model.

While Heat entices with performance-biased styling and handling, the newest Durango also maintains SUV capability with room for five passengers and 50 cubic feet of storage space—more storage capacity behind the second row than any other five-passenger vehicle on the market– including 5.9 cubic feet of under-floor storage. As in the R/T, Heat comes standard with Uconnect Voice Command and a premium 506 Watt Alpine audio system with 10 speakers, including a subwoofer.

About Durango

From its sleek exterior design to its modern, spacious interior, and intelligent, fuel-efficient and powerful powertrain options, the 2011 Dodge Durango is all-new from the inside out. And the changes are more than skin deep. The Durango's unibody structure is more than 25 percent stiffer than its predecessor. The end result is a vehicle with crossover versatility, SUV capability and performance in a different league than its competitive class.

Durango customers live busy lives. They need a vehicle that is spacious and flexible enough to haul three rows of passengers (Citadel, CrewLux, Crew, Express) and their gear, but powerful and agile enough to keep it fun. Durango customers are looking for the perfect balance of functional versatility and luxury at an outstanding value. Dodge's newest SUV is the only vehicle in the segment that will meet their needs.

The starting U.S. Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) for the all-new 2011 Dodge Durango (Rear-wheel-drive/All-wheel-drive):

Durango Express: $29,195 / $31,195

Durango Heat: $30,295 / $32,295

Durango Crew: $33,195 / $35,195

Durango Crew with CrewLux package: $38,195 / $40,195

Durango R/T: $35,465/$37,865 Durango Citadel: $41,795 / $43,795

(All prices exclude an $850 destination charge.)

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Shelby unveils the new 2012 GT350 at Chicago

Posted: 11 Feb 2011 12:00 AM PST

Shelby unveiled several 2012 GT350s at the Chicago Auto Show, marking the first time that the company has debuted a car at an auto show in more than fifty years and as we speculated the other day, Shelby has created an open top GT350.

Its been a long time since Shelby created a convertible, in fact it was around 1970 the last time they produced one and now, here they are rolling out open top Mustangs again.

The Shelby GT350 is based on the Ford Mustang GT, the performance specs will be the same as the 2011 model with customers being able to choose from a 430 HP normally aspirated engine, a 525 HP supercharged powerplant or a 624 HP supercharged version. An automatic transmission is optional with the normally aspirated engine, as well as a short throw shifter for the manual.

Shelby have also introduced two new body colors (red and blue) and they will be available on the 2012 models. The company will only be producing 350 units of 2012 Shelby GT350.

Founder of Shelby American, Carroll Shelby had this to say about the new muscle cars.

"Last year, we brought back the GT350 45 years after it was launched," "They look and sound just like the ones we built in 1965.  We're repeating history by offering two additional colors and building a few convertibles for the second year of production."

Shelby American built 562 total GT350 fastback coupes in 1965; all were painted white with blue stripes.  In 1966, Shelby added more color options for the hardtops.  Four convertibles were also built; today they are among the most collectible Shelbys in the world.

President of Shelby American also made a statement John Luft,

"Delays in the delivery of the new five liter Mustang last year resulted in fewer 45th Anniversary GT350 coupes than expected in the 2011 model year," "For the 2012 model year, we brought back the first GT350 convertible since 1970 and ramped up production to meet the expected demand.  Our plan is to only build 350 total 2012 model year GT350s to maintain exclusivity and future collectability."

Color combinations for the 2012 Shelby GT350s include Performance White with blue LeMans stripes, Race Red with white LeMans stripes and Kona Blue with white LeMans stripes. The convertible will offered with a new optional light bar; other options include a one piece drive shaft and color coordinated billet aluminum engine cap set.

Prices for the Shelby GT350 starts at $26,995.00 for the normally aspirated and goes up to $33,995.00 for the supercharged, prices do not include the base car. 

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