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United Airlines told a customer on one of their flights Thursday morning that she couldn’t wear her Google Glass during the flight, saying it was a security concern.
Kim Luenberger is a Swiss photographer studying in London, and she has an unusual knack for taking photos of toy cars in interesting environments. That’s a pretty specific skill, but, as you can see in the photos, it’s easy to appreciate, like Petrolicious does.
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Great news, fans of zany British sports cars! TVR is opening an R&D center in the UK and its owners claim that it will launch an all new model in the next two or three years. If this proves to be true then I think a cheer is necessary. Huzzah!
On Take Your Child to Work Day, General Motors did the natural thing and put a bunch of kids to work. But by doing that, they found out the Buick Enclave has a rear entertainment system that won’t make a kid barf. What computer would tell you that?
From Truck Yeah!: There was nothing particularly special about the first generation Ford Explorer, ’til it rolled with mother flippin’ dinosaurs in one of the cinematic masterpieces of my generation. Christopher Orgeron agrees; he’s two years into building the ultimate Jurassic Park Explorer replica complete with big-brick TVs inside.
The Aston Martin V12 Vantage S is a monster of a sports coupe. At the front, those color-matched fangs and open mouth look like Dracula ready to take a bite. And underneath the hood, the 6.0-liter V12 sounds like the Wolf Man growling whenever the driver gets on the throttle. In a recent video, XCAR got its hands on this wonderful behemoth and showed its brilliant brutality.
The smartest move that the producers made was letting the car speak for itself. Several times during the video, the host shuts up, and the only sound is the bellow from the exhaust of the Aston Martin. The cinematography is pretty darn nice, too. If you don’t have time to watch the whole video, skip about 10 minutes into it when XCAR just lets the diabolical V12 thunder. It’s definitely one of the highlights. Scroll down to watch – and listen – for yourself.
Washing the car is an activity like mowing the lawn that some people love and others find to be an absolute chore. For the latter group, Nissan may have an answer. Nissan is testing a nano-paint coating that could make the car wash a very infrequent place to visit.
Shown on a European Note hatchback, the key is a special layer of super-hydrophobic and oleophobic material called Ultra-Ever Dry that is sprayed over the paint. It creates a protective layer between the body and environment, and it means that when dirt or water come into contact with the car, the gunk just sheets away.
Nissan admits that the coating is still early in testing. The key will be if the stuff can actually last for the long term, and the company will be analyzing it over the coming months to see how it will react in different conditions. At the moment, the automaker has no plans to offer Ultra-Ever Dry as a standard feature, but it may make it available as an aftermarket addition in the future. Scroll down to watch the video of Nissan testing the stuff in some very dirty conditions.
Yesterday we featured a video of the Dynasphere , a crazy electric monowheel-thing from the 1930s. That was pretty neat, but the truth is, it comes from a wondrous cache of old-timey videos. It’s called British Pathé and it’s a great way to lose hours and hours.
In the minds of many auto enthusiasts, Mitsubishi has become an afterthought. It has transformed from a company known for its turbocharged, all-wheel-drive rally machines into an automaker with a very boring lineup. Maybe we are being unfair, though. While the company doesn’t have much of a performance presence anymore, the Japanese brand is doing quite well financially.
According to Reuters, Mitsubishi Motors had an operating profit of 123.4 billion yen ($1.2 billion) worldwide for the fiscal year that ended in March. That’s twice as much as last year and a new all-time record for the Japanese automaker. It’s even paying dividends to investors for the first time in 16 years, and its expected profit of 135 billion yen ($1.3 billion) in the new fiscal year matches a goal it had set for itself to achieve two years from now.
The automaker currently focuses much of its efforts on Southeast Asia, which accounts for about a quarter of its sales. It will put even greater attention there in the coming years with more local production, according to Reuters.
However, the company is seeing success in North America too. For the 2013 calendar year, Mitsubishi Motors NA saw sales increase by 7.7 percent, and that growth has continued this year. Our By the Numbers figures have shown that it posted gains in two of the first three months of 2014, and while Mitsu’s totals are relatively small, that’s still a fact that larger companies like Honda and Volkswagen can’t brag about.
It looks like Elon Musk has a new group of allies over at the Federal Trade Commission. Writing on the FTC blog, three high-level FTC officials came out against the “protectionist” network of laws in the US that govern automotive dealers and prevent, in some cases, Tesla Motors from selling its cars directly to customers. They called the rules, “bad policy for a number of reasons.”
[The legal] protections expanded until in many states they included outright bans on the sale of new cars by anyone other than a dealer-specifically, an auto manufacturer. Instead of “protecting,” these state laws became “protectionist,” perpetuating one way of selling cars-the independent car dealer.
The post is not a call to arms, but more of a position statement co-authored by Andy Gavil (director of the Office of Policy Planning), Debbie Feinstein (director of the Bureau of Competition), and Marty Gaynor (director of the Bureau of Economics).
“The collective [cost] impact of [the state-by-state battles] is one of the major concerns here. [Tesla is] just trying to sell their cars” – Andy Gavin
Gavil told AutoblogGreen that the main goal was to bring attention to the issue, which the post has certainly done. There are so many of state fights going on, he said, that this was a way to reach a lot of people at once. “We’ve been watching this for months,” he said. “It’s very clearly a state-by-state battle. We are concerned about Tesla litigating state-by-state. The collective [cost] impact of that is one of the major concerns here. They’re just trying to sell their cars. The way the industry is reacting shows that it’s about more than that.”
Gavil wouldn’t go so far as to say that there should be new national rules – it’s up to Congress to do that, he said – but he has also been looking at the taxi industry and the upstarts like Lyft and Uber. The competition angle sometimes doesn’t get the attention it deserves, he said. “If there’s a more open debate about it, that can only be a good thing.”
As we’ve seen for weeks,
Russian special forces patriotic, hardworking, and all-around-good local Ukrainian self-defense militia have been taking over sites in eastern Ukraine. And now it looks like this huge armored column of "militia" is heading over from Russia to help out some more.
Welcome to Must Read, where we single out the best stories from around the automotive universe and beyond. Today, we have reports from Car and Driver, Gizmag and Motoramic.
This is the Johammer electric motorcycle, which for at least six years prior to now has been known as the “biiista” – you can still make out that word stamped into the fluted aluminum fairing behind the front footpeg in the image above. We’re not sure what’s behind the rebranding, but the electro-moto is produced by Austrian company Hammerschmid Maschinenbau with pen work done by Yellow Works design studio.
There are two versions, called J1.150 and J1.200, the former with an 8.3 kilowatt/hour battery and a 150-kilometer (90-mile) range, the latter with a 12.7-kW/h battery and a 200-km (120-mile) range, and with the J1.200 Johammer says it makes the first electric motorcycle that can go that far on a single charge. While the wind-whipped rider looks to be on an easy cruise, it probably took her a while to get to that point: Johammer doesn’t give 0-60 mph times, it only gives 30-50 km/h and 30-62 mph times. The 350-pound J1.150 and the 390-pound J1.200 both take four seconds to go from 30-50 mph and eight seconds to go from 30-62 mph.
On the other hand, Johammer is bullish on its technology. On top of that range, the company guarantees that the batteries powering the 11-kilowatt (14.75 horsepower) hub-mounted motor will be maintenance free for the 124,000-mile life of the bike and won’t lose more than 15 percent of their capacity in four years.
There are no foot controls, the rider – who sits 25 inches above the ground on a 57-inch wheelbase – handles everything via grips mounted on the mirror stalks. There’s no dashboard, either – the displays are integrated into the mirrors. You can get it in five different colors for either 23,000 euro ($31,795 US) or 25,000 euro ($34,556 US), though not in the US as far has we’ve heard, to date. There’s a video below with a few seconds of rolling footage if you need some help imagining your low-riding, future-forward lifestyle.
We’ve covered the strange story of the Equus Bass before, and strange ownership aside, it’s an interesting car in many ways. And now there’s one more — it may be the first car for sale that uses 3D printed parts directly on the finished product, as well as in more indirect methods.
Today, you were asking C.J. Wilson , noted car and motorsports enthusiasts best known for playing something called baseball, all of your questions. Some had to do with cars, some baseball, and some were just questions about your car. OK, then.
Can-Am has added another pair of stars to its advertising push for the three-wheeled Spyder motorcycle. After showing former NHL star Mark Messier guaranteeing a number of things (playing on his guarantee of winning a crucial game in the Stanley Cup playoffs in 1994), the company has hired IndyCar and NASCAR star Danica Patrick, and model/television personality Brooke Burke to talk about the Can-Am Spyder’s talents as a paparazzi escape vehicle.
It’s a clever little ad, showing a sort of silly, celebrity oriented version of Uber. That said, we’d argue that based on the rather dark history of paparazzi harassment and the tendency for stars or paparazzos to be injured or arrested when trying to escape from the cameras, the spot walks a fine line in terms of taste. Take a look below for the spot and decide for yourself.
When Mary Barra testified before Congress she argued that she had no influence on, or knowledge of what was going on in her company. And now she’s on the cover of TIME’s 100 most influential people list.
The Jeep Cherokee Dakar concept showed off at the 2014 Easter Jeep Safari made a lot of online friends, even the Cherokee naysayers assenting that there’s a monster Jeep underneath the Cherokee’s skin if you’re willing to go in and get it. But after reading Road & Track‘s write-up of what went into creating the Dakar, particularly its lift, you’ll understand why you’ll probably never see the components for it in the Jeep Performance Parts catalog.
The concept’s press release mentions a “prototype Jeep Performance Parts lift kit, and additional suspension modifications.” The short-story explanation is that the front struts on the standard Cherokee weren’t engineered to accept any amount of lift, so the long story begins with the phrase, “an entirely new suspension.” Head over to RT to read the details, and don’t be afraid to ogle the Cherokee Dakar gallery and another awesome Jeep fancy that won’t likely crawl over the hurdles imposed by production reality.
Think back about a month or so, and you might recall the C-01, Lotus’s striking superbike. No, it’s not a true Lotus; the company just licensed its name and a handful of brand caché to a collaboration between German motorsport firms Kodewa and the Holzer Group. That’s not to detract from the bike; it’s a beautiful thing with a design that evokes both the futurism of Tron’s Lightcycles and the wrought-with-meaning fuselage of a Supermarine Spitfire. I’m sure it goes nicely, too. But no matter how you spin it, it’s a Lotus in name only. In fact, it isn’t even the first two-wheeler to wear a Lotus badge. It isn’t even the second.
I recently spent a week with the all-new Lexus IS350. Those of you who follow the car industry know this vehicle well: it’s Lexus’s entry-level sport sedan, featuring a 306-horsepower V6, loads of modern technology, excellent handling, and a large front grille that sometimes eats puppies.
This is apparently the first photo of the 2016 Lexus IS F. Which makes sense, because it’s hard to mistake it for anything other than a Lexus with a ton of exhaust pipes.
Slow US growth is hampering profits at Hyundai. In its first quarter financial statement, the Korean automaker reported a profit of 1.93 trillion won ($1.86 billion). According to Reuters, this is less than analysts’ expectations and nearly the same as last year.
According to the report, US sales fell by 3 percent in Q1 2014. To make matters worse, the high value of the South Korean currency caused lower profits on models exported from there. On the bright side, Hyundai’s Chinese sales rose by 9 percent, according to Reuters. It’s also working on building a fourth factory there.
The company has had a rough time in the US throughout the quarter. John Krafcik, the CEO of Hyundai of America, stepped down on January 1, and the company was already predicting slow growth in sales for 2014. Falling quality scores for the Sonata and Elantra aren’t helping matters either. However, there may be hope on the way. The second-generation Genesis Sedan was introduced to the US in Detroit, and the redesigned Sonata was recently shown in New York. Successful launches of these important models could prove crucial.
It’s easy to get lost in great cars, and it’s especially easy among the jaw-dropping historics of the Amelia Concours D’Elegance. But there’s more to it all than the machines themselves.
A Dodge Challenger challenged a house in Maryland last night. It is unclear who won. Probably the house, I guess?
Been wondering where the heck the reviews of the all-new, plug-in-hybrid BMW i8 have been? After all, the car isn’t exactly new, having debuted in concept form way back in September of 2009. In August of last year, we even tested a prototype of the new supercar. Despite that, though, we still haven’t gotten a crack at the actual vehicle that will be sold to the public.
Well, we’re happy to tell you that we’re currently testing the i8 and will have a proper review for you soon. If, however, you’re just aching for some coverage of the low-slung plug-in, we have a short video of it in action around Germany’s famed Nürburgring.
Despite it’s three-cylinder, turbocharged gas engine, the i8 sounds pretty angry as it laps the Ring. That is, until it has a little bit of a breakdown. According to the guys that caught the car on video, it appeared the i8 had a minor brake issue, and was parked on the side of the track for a good 15 minutes, with the driver pumping the brakes. We should probably just take this as proof, then, that manufacturers are actually using the Ring for testing, and not just messing about.
Take a look below for the video, and stay tuned for our full review of the 2015 BMW i8.
The 2015 Ford Mustang , bro! It has Line Lock and Track Apps for ripping sick burnouts at your next track day, bro! It’s designed specifically for smoking your bitch-ass Camaro-driving friends at the drag strip, bro! But please note that engaging in such behavior will, in fact, void your warranty.
Just another cloudy day somewhere in China. Until this dash cam catches a code-brown close encounter with the full fury of Mother Nature.
Chevrolet may have struck gold with the Camaro Z/28. Not only is it a great car to drive, it’s also proving to be a hot seller. A rumor has emerged that the brand has already fulfilled all the orders for the planned 500-car production run.
Don’t worry, though. If you want a Z/28 in your garage, Chevy plans to start building a second production order of 2,500 or more cars for the 2015 model year, according to Autoguide. However, it’ll be a few months before those will start arriving at dealers. In the meantime, you still might be able to get your hands on the $75,000 track-biased Camaro. While all 500 cars were spoken for, some were ordered by dealers to just show off the sports coupe on their showroom floors, according to Road and Track. You might be able to wheel and deal to get one of them.
We’ve contacted Chevy for confirmation of the rumor and will update this story with more information when we hear back.
C.J. Wilson is the starting pitcher for the Los Angeles Angels. But who cares about that? He owns C.J. Wilson Racing in the Continental Tire Series, has a McLaren 12C, and is waiting for his P1. And now he’s here to answer any of your dying questions.
Ever since Tesla Motors started going to war with car dealers over their direct-to-customer sales model, many of us have wondered this: Why can’t a consumer buy a car however they want? Today, officials from the Federal Trade Commission addressed that question by sticking up for Tesla and saying bans on direct sales is "bad policy."
I’m a little shell-shocked as I remove my helmet. Members of the MINI X-Raid PR team are actually concerned as I struggle to form coherent sentences. Though I knew that this would be a once in a lifetime opportunity, I never expected it would have this kind of impact on me. Standing to my right is the Monster Energy X-Raid MINI ALL4 Racing endurance rally car that competed in this year’s Dakar Rally. And I’ve just driven it.
- Steve Wozniak (@stevewoz) April 23, 2014
People pay attention to Steve Wozniak. People pay attention to Tesla Motors. Put the two together, with the bonus of a not-yet-available Model X, and you’ve got the makings of Twitter gold. This was proven yesterday, when Woz Tweeted a picture of himself with what he said was “our new Tesla!” Excited admirers offered their congratulations and wanted to see the cool Falcon doors in action.
But it was all a dream too sweet. The Model X, after all, isn’t due until the end of the year and even an Apple co-founder can’t bend time that much. Tech editor at The Street Chris Ciaccia popped the bubble with this Tweeted explanation: “Despite @stevewoz tweeting a pic of him w/the Model X, not his new car. Just a photo op with the display model at that charging station.” So, really, “Woz’s” Model X could belong to anyone who wants to go to wherever the display model is located and snap a picture.
We would not be surprised, though, if Woz is one of the 12,000 (guesstimated) pre-orders for the Model X. The all-wheel drive, all-electric CUV can hit 60 miles per hour in under five seconds thanks to a powertrain similar to the one in the Model S. Like the popular S, the X will come with either a 60- or 85-kWh battery. You can see the Falcon doors move up and down, digitally, here.
When it comes to Le Mans, I’m not a Toyota fan. I don’t know why. I just root for everyone else. Maybe it’s because I think of their cars as race Camrys. But this TS040. Damn it sounds amazing.