Jumat, 10 Oktober 2014

Ferrari just announced that injured driver Felipe Massa

Ferrari just announced that injured driver Felipe Massa could be back in the saddle as early as Monday. Massa hasn't been in an F1 car since July's Hungarian Grand Prix, when a spring from another car flew up and hit him above his eye, fracturing his skull.

The first time he has even been back on track was last week when he took the wheel of a kart. Because of testing bans in place this season in F1, Massa can't drive the current car he was running until Hungary. As he gets back up to speed, the FIA has granted him permission to drive a 2007-spec car fitted with GP2 tires.

Massa has also spent time on Ferrari's racing simulator. Word has it he's already mastered Barcelona and is working hard at beating the Interlagos circuit now. Before taking the wheel of the 2007 car, he still needs to pass an examination, but once he's cleared, he could be on track in Italy by Monday. This will be testing only as the driver isn't expected to compete for Ferrari any more this season.

Selasa, 19 April 2011

Shanghai Motor Show

the Shanghai Convention Center was little more than a rice paddy, but this week, the sprawling facility will play host to what has rapidly become one of the world's most important auto shows.
By a quirk of the calendar, this year's big Chinese car show not only overlaps but threatens to overwhelm the New York Auto Show and its ability to garner valuable media time – a development that echoes the rapidly transformation occurring in the global automotive business.
Michael Dunne, the founder of Automotive Resources Asia – today a part of J.D. Power and Associates – recalls his first trip to China, barely two decades ago, when the roads were ruled by bicycles, motorbikes and buses, and the sight of an automobile was enough to draw everyone's attention.

Selasa, 29 Maret 2011

Nissan Juke SL Review

Beauty is objective. Great minds from Plato to Kant had it right. Need proof? The Nissan Juke. It is not, in any sense of the word, beautiful. In fact, one can definitively say it is the opposite.

1. The Juke is powered by a turbocharged 1.6L direct-injection 4-cylinder that makes 188-hp and 177 lb-ft of torque.

2. The Juke sits below the Rogue in Nissan’s crossover lineup.

3. With a 7.0 second 0-60 mph time, it also gets as much as 27/32-mpg.

If there’s a philosopher out there with an objective theory of fun, well, that’s where the Juke fits in. It is, without a doubt, a thoroughly enjoyable driving machine. Many, many crossovers promise car-like driving dynamics. The Juke delivers and then some. In fact, it might be the first instance where the crossover version has less body roll than the sedan it’s based on – with the Juke sharing its underpinnings with the wallowy Versa.

Now do your best to ignore you ever read the word ‘Versa’ because even the remotest of comparisons between that oversized sub-compact and the Juke will create preconceived notions in your head about this SportCross that should not be there.

With a thoroughly solid chassis, a 3,000-lb curb weight, some big 17-inch wheels and 188-hp of turbocharged goodness, the Juke will have you tackling on-amps with serious speed and not even a hint of tippyness. Sure there’s understeer, but that’s pretty much unavoidable in modern cars – especially our front-drive tester.

Rabu, 06 Oktober 2010

It's been over three years since the start of Stepneygate

It's been over three years since the start of Stepneygate. But while the matter was supposedly closed a year ago, it's only now that the namesake perpetrator has been sentenced in criminal court.
The scandal, for those unfamiliar, centered around one Nigel Stepney, a British engineer who defected from Ferrari to McLaren in 2007. Stepney stood accused – and now convicted – of taking trade secrets with him from Maranello to Woking, while sabotaging Ferrari's team in the process.
The scandal resulted in McLaren being fined $100 million and then disqualified from that year's championship. Meanwhile, the FIA banned Stepney (along with his chief cohort Mike Coughlan) from any series it supervises (which is pretty much all of them) as Ferrari initiated legal proceedings against Stepney.
Those proceedings have now drawn to a close, Italian courts reportedly sentencing Stepney to 20 months in prison and – wait for it – a 600-euro fine. However, sources anticipate that due to the nature of the Italian legal system the sentence will likely be suspended and that Stepney won't actually spend a single night behind bars.

Minggu, 26 September 2010

Hyundai Sonata being recalled for steering issues

Hyundai Sonata
2011 Hyundai Sonata being recalled for steering issues – Click above for high-res image gallery

It looks like the Hyundai Sonata is officially taking its place near the top of the midsize car category. We already told you how it has moved into third place in the sales race, and now it moves up the charts again... but on a much less desirable list. Hyundai has issued a recall of 139,500 Sonatas over steering issues.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) report at safercar.gov identifies the issue says "the steering column intermediate shaft universal joint connections may have been either improperly assembled or insufficiently tightened." The consequence could be "a complete separation or compromised attachment of the connections, such that the driver could experience a loss of, or reduction in, steering capability increasing the risk of a crash."

The recall affects MY 2011 Hyundai Sonata sedans built between December 11, 2009 and September 10, 2010. Dealers should begin sending out recall notices in October. They will inspect and re-torque the assembly, and update the steering software too, at no charge.

In the meantime, owners can contact the Hyundai Customer Assistance Center at 1-800-633-5151, or the NHTSA vehicle safety hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (tty 1-800-424-9153). Hat tip to Ralph!

Selasa, 20 Juli 2010

Toyota FJ Cruiser

The 2010 Toyota FJ Cruiser
I had this for several days, and I only wish I could have this vehicle on my planned vacation in Colorado--this would be perfect for mountain passes. I felt a little bad about having this for so long and not being able to challenge it off-roading. But I did drive it to and from work.

First of all, I think its styling is very retro and the black matte hood sticker adds even more of a throwback look. Then, after taking a closer look, you see the meaty tires and heavy-duty suspension and you realize this vehicle could be a whole lot of fun. The outside might be a little too busy for some, but I think most will dig it.

On the inside, I was not surprised too much by the looks. It's simple with floors that look as if they can be hosed down if needed. The gauges were rounded, and Toyota throws in a little plastic with the exact same exterior color in the middle. They have some faux metal-looking material inside, giving it a feeling of toughness. But the radio sounded tinny to me, even after adjusting all the settings. The seats were comfy, which is good if you get moved around a lot on an off-road excursion.

On the highway, you can tell this vehicle was set up more for the two tracks. Straight line felt fine, but going around corners obviously isn't as smooth as most vehicles and had a tugging feeling. Off the line, there isn't a ton of punch from the V6, but once up to speed it's fine. There is plenty of room for hauling, and it would be way cooler to bring the kids to a soccer game in this instead of a humdrum SUV.

Overall, I like this, and if I lived near the mountains this would be on my shopping list. But since I live near Detroit and don't get to go off-roading enough, I probably would pass on this FJ Cruiser because I would be tossing money out the window on these pricey upgrades and not be able to use them often enough.

NEWS EDITOR GREG MIGLIORE: I liked this FJ Cruiser from my first turn of the key. The retro looks are quirky and cool, though this really seems like something that would have been a great H4 for Hummer.

But I digress. The engine has plenty of power, and I had no trouble passing on the expressway. Takeoffs from launch on wet pavement were also fun, and these big BF Goodrich tires offer plenty of traction and fun. Plus, stopping this ute is not an issue with the solid brakes. The steering has a satisfying weight to it, too.

I liked the safari interior. The colors looked sharp, and the plastics and materials felt pleasing. The white gauges have a bit of a green hue at night and light up brightly. Plus there's a big compass on the dash. Kind of cool, I think. The back seat is a bit uncomfortable, but this is hardly a minivan.

Outside, this ute is marked by the prominent circular headlights and the giant tire on the back. It's a fun package for a reasonable price. I could have some serious fun in this.

2010 Toyota FJ Cruiser

Base Price: $26,070

As-Tested Price: $33,363

Drivetrain: 4.0-liter V6; 4WD, five-speed automatic

Output: 259 hp @ 5,600 rpm, 270 lb-ft @ 4,400 rpm

Curb Weight: 4,295 lb

Fuel Economy (EPA/AW): 19/17.3 mpg

Options: Trail Teams special-edition package with Sandstorm exterior, hood blackout, blackout mirrors, bumper ends, door handles and grille, TRD beadlock-style alloy wheels with BF Goodrich all-terrain tires, trail-tuned Bilstein shock absorbers, active traction control, locking rear differential, rock rails, premium sound, auxiliary audio jack, leather-wrapped steering wheel with integrated audio controls, remote keyless entry system, cruise control, power outside mirrors with illuminated markers, rear privacy glass, rear wiper, backup camera linked to mirror with integrated backup camera monitor, 115V AC power outlet, exterior color-keyed door-trim inserts and instrument panel, fabric seat inserts, multi-information display, floating ball type (inclinometer, compass, temperature), daytime running lights, wheels locks, trail teams badge ($6,695); towing hitch and wire harness ($3,49); passenger-side armrest ($125); courtesy delivery ($75); stainless-steel exhaust tip ($49)

Rabu, 02 Juni 2010

Das neue Motorrad

Germany's "new motorcycle" – Click above for high-res image gallery

Emerging from behind a veil of secrecy, we were recently introduced to a new motorcycle manufacturer based out of the ├╝ber cool home of Oktoberfest. With the promise of German engineering galore, this little-known company seems to have an heir of legitimacy behind them thus far. After all, it would seem that the country largely believed responsible for the "birth of the motorcycle" would have more than a single marquee brand in cycles, adding diversity to the current state of Roundel dominance in Bavaria.

Das Neue Motorrad – meaning "the new motorcycle" – is the only name identifying the company at this time, embodying a statement while providing a title in one swoop. The road leading to the bike's official worldwide release has been marked out by breadcrumbs in the form of small bits of information being released in five stages... until finally, on June 15, it will be unleashed on the masses. What little bit we do know is that the project has been years in the making, and was birthed from an unlikely collaboration between riding enthusiasts with a vision for greatness.

The most recent tidbit of news centers on the bike's proposed powerplant. Addressing the speculation of electric motivation, the company says its design is based on "a very efficient combustion platform," even indicating multiple cylinders but leaving the exact number as a mystery for now. Added to this was the promise, "Our engine concept is based on one currently found nowhere in the motorcycle world." We cannot help but be left with an almost giddy anticipation, coupled with the potential to be thoroughly disappointed if this claim is not substantiated. Stay tuned for updates as the countdown progresses and "the new motorcycle" comes to life.

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