VIDEO: How to move two tons down the quarter-mile in less than ten seconds

Filed under: ,



When the owners of two-ton monsters get together at the annual Southern Super Heavyweight Shootout each November, Sir Issac Newton's laws get put to the test. As evidence, we submit the above video from the 2006 gathering, which pitted Mike Smith's 1995 Impala SS up against Paul Roswell's 1994 Impala SS in the final round of the "Big Dog" bracket.

Both cars run somewhat similar powertrain setups, with each ingesting large amounts of nitrous oxide into LT1-based small-blocks that are punched out to 383 cubic inches. GM's bulletproof Turbo 400 is used to deliver the power out back, where Smith's car hangs a Moser-built Ford 9" rea r axle from a custom four-link suspension and Roswell's uses GM 8.5" 10-bolt and aftermarket control arms.

The result, as demonstrated here, is an extremely fast 10.8-second run at nearly 125 MPH for Roswell's 4400lb Impala - and that's the slower of the two. Smith's 4040lb sedan ran the quarter in 9.7 seconds at just over 138 MPH, courtesy of its more extreme engine and suspension setup. More details on these cars -- and several other rather quick gazelles -- are available here.

 

Permalink | Email this | Comments


BOLD MOVES: THE FUTURE OF FORD A new documentary series. Be part of the transformation as it happens in real-time

[via] Autoblog

FOR SALE: TVR needs new owner to stay alive

Filed under: ,



A brief report on TopGear.com reveals that the British sports car builder TVR has been "placed in adminitstration," which we believe is Brit for something akin to Chapter 11. The report states that administrators PKF (UK) intends to sell the automaker to keep it alive. TVR was purchased by Russian millionaire Nikolai Smolensky back in 2004, and though the Russian did much in the way of reviving TVR with new models and a new sense of hope, it appears that recent efforts to relocate production, reduce costs and unveil a new supercar are too-little-too-late moves for the company.

Thanks for the tip, Zane!

[Source: TopGear.com]

Related posts:
TVR doing well, rehires laid-off workers

TVR plans to double production with entirely new lineup
TVR calls it quits in UK
Pissed off TVR owners converge on factory

 

[via] Autoblog

Wiper woes: Mercedes-Benz recalls 130,000 vehicles in Germany

Filed under: , , ,

After a rough few years full of significant recalls, Mercedes-Benz appeared (or appears, depending on your perspective) to be getting its act together by successfully addressing its quality issues. The automaker just announced a major recall in Germany involving 130,000 vehicles windshield wiper motors that could be defective. While one recall a return to quality does not ruin, neither does it help. The recall in question only affects A- and B-Class vehicles, as well as C-Class wagons built between May 2005 and May 2006. Some may consider defective wiper motors a minor issue, but a recall by definition is significant, and in this case one could imagine a dark and stormy night where being without wipers could be deadly.

[Source: Automotive News - Europe]

 

[via] Autoblog

Starting 2007 off on the right foot

Filed under:


click on image above to see high resolution gallery with 50 pics


Now here's a New Year's resolution we can get behind: pledging to drive our classic or high performance cars more. We're not talking about street racing or anything illegal, mind you, just a little spirited motoring to hear and feel these great machines at speed. This particular drive was in Southern California and has been a staple for local residents going on a few years now. The event was the 4th Annual Tour d'Orange, and it kicked off another New Year for some of the car crazy residents of Orange County on Monday. Starting at the Auto Kennel and adjacent Newport Shelby Cobras, we looped around OC to rediscover our diverse landscape.

Winding our way from the heart of Orange County to the Pacific Coast Highway, we drove down along some of the most scenic coastline known to man, cutting back inland to the foothills and canyon roads before a lunch stop at In-N-Out. As you can see from the high-res gallery we've assembled for you, the assortment of cars that showed up this year was quite eclectic: Mercedes SLR to rat rod, 996 GT2 to VW GTI, a genuine aluminum Cobra, a Ferrari Daytona, Superformance SPF, and '69 soft top Porsche Targa. Similar events take place all over the world, and even around SoCal there are a few other drives like this one, but when offered a ride in a 600-hp Andial-massaged 993 Turbo, we jumped at the chance. Thanks to everybody involved for kicking off 2007 with the right foot.

 

Permalink | Email this | Comments


BOLD MOVES: THE FUTURE OF FORD A new documentary series. Be part of the transformation as it happens in real-time

[via] Autoblog

REPORT: Ford Transit Connect to be sold in U.S.

Filed under: , ,



Perhaps taking a note from DaimlerChrysler's playbook, Ford will reportedly be importing a version of the Ford Transit Connect commercial vehicle to be sold in the United States. DaimlerChrysler began selling the Sprinter commercial van in the U.S. around 2004, and has enjoyed success selling it to large corporations that need workhorse fleet vehicles with large, enclosed cargo spaces. The Turkish news website Sabah is reporting that the Transit Connect destined for our shores will be built in Turkey at Ford's Kocaeli facilities until production of the commercial van begins in the U.S. around 2009.

More info after jump.

Thanks for the tip, Igor!

[Source: Sabah]

Continue reading REPORT: Ford Transit Connect to be sold in U.S.

 

[via] Autoblog

Volvo: So tell us what you REALLY think about our new C30

Filed under: ,



While we have nothing but love for the C30, apparently there has been a love it or hate it reaction to the car at recent auto shows. Volvo has come up with an interesting new ad campaign to harness the polarized reactions to promote its new premium hatchback. Using the tag line, "That's one opinion. What's yours?," Volvo is breaking the 4th wall in its new commercials and asking people what they think of the C30's styling. And the company isn't cherry-picking the results, either. Apparently, it's OK for some people to dislike the car.

The campaign, which includes 16 short films, started in the UK and will be used in the States later in 2007. The theme of the series is "Product of free will." You can see all 16 shorts now at volvocars.com/freewill. This interactive website is pretty cool with an animated figure loving the car and then vomiting on it after some contemplation. For every 10-second negative clip, there's an equal length positive one though.

EuroRSCG Fuel of London is responsible for the ads. They say that the goal of the ads was to get younger buyers to think about Volvo... period. Admitting the car isn't for everybody just makes the appeal more authentic. It's been pretty well received so far because a lot of people have said they feel a direct connection to the message. Like Volvo is talking directly to them. Check it out for yourself and leave your own review.

[Source: Automotive News, sub req]

 

[via] Autoblog

XM and Sirius to merge?

Filed under:

[via] Autoblog

DaimlerChrysler and insurers agree on settlement payout

Filed under: ,

DaimlerChrysler has finally reached an agreement with its insurers that finally determines who is paying what in a settlement of a lawsuit filed by the automaker's investors over the nature of the merger that created company back in 1998. Chrysler stock holders originally argued that the Daimler-Benz deceived them when describing the joining of both companies as a "merger of equals" and sought an outrageous $22 billion in damages. The lawsuit quotes then DaimlerChrysler head honcho Jürgen Schrempp (shown at right) as saying in a 2000 interview that calling the deal a merger rather than a takovoer was for "psychological reasons" only. That slip of the tonght cost Schrempp and the company as a whole, which was counting on Schrempp's liab ility insurance to cover most or all of the $300 million settlement that was reached. Many of the company's insurer's, however, refused to pay.

Originally the insurers coughed up $25 million, forcing DCX to pay the rest. Of the remaining $228 million left to be payed on the settlement, the Associated Press is now reporting that insurers insurers have agreed to pay for over $223 million.

[Source: Associated Press via International Herald Tribune]

 

[via] Autoblog

Officially Official: Jaguar C-XF Concept - pics galore

Filed under: , , ,


click on the image above to view the full high-resolution gallery of 29 pics

Embargo breaking notwithstanding, there is still lots of information to share on the C-XF Concept that Jaguar will officially debut at the 2007 North American International Auto Show in Detroit next week. The design finally breaks Jaguar away from the ball and chain of its own traditions with a decidedly un-retro shape that still manages to exude a feline quality. This cat is more like a lion, however, thanks to a 4.2-liter supercharged V8 producing 420 hp and 368 ft-lbs. of torque driving the rear wheels through a six-speed automatic transmission. The C-XF also showcases some new technology, including something called JaguarSense that allows certa in functions in the cockpit to be activated with a gesture of the hand instead of the push of a button. The interior also employs advanced lighting that bathes the cabin in an electric blue when the vehicle is started. Now, Jaguar's design director Ian Callum and his team want us to know that we are not staring at the next S-Type sedan, though the C-XF does display the brand's new design direction going forward.



As we said, there's lots more material on the CX-F, so check out Jaguar's press release after the jump and a full high-resolution gallery of 29 pics here. They're all 1,280 pixels wide, so feel free to make one your next desktop wallpaper.

[Source: Jaguar]

Continue reading Officially Official: Jaguar C-XF Concept - pics galore

 

Permalink | Email this | Comments


BOLD MOVES: THE FUTURE OF FORD A new documentary series. Be part of the transfo rmation as it happens in real-time

[via] Autoblog

AutoblogGreen for 01.03.07

Filed under: ,



The Lincoln MKR concept car not only eats E85 (where available), but its interior features soy-based seat foam and leather and wood that's a lot kinder to the environment than it could be, had Ford done things the old way. Good on 'em. Read more at AutoblogGreen.

 

[via] Autoblog

The US Minivan's last stand - Chrysler to debut 2008 Minvans at Detroit

Filed under: , ,

Ford and General Motors have lost their taste for the minivan wars, leaving the Chrysler Group to stand alone as the sole domestic player in the minivan arena. It's just as well -- DCX always had the best American vans, anyway. Having invented the segment, Chrysler has hunkered down and pushed their minivan to be a contender once again. The Caravan and Town & Country will sport new styling, squaring up the edges of the current look, and front-end appearances will offer more distinction between the Dodge and Chrysler brands. Underhood, four-cylinders are banished, and there's a new high-end 4.0 liter V6 hooked up to a six-speed transaxle. The squarer profile will offer more interior room, and there's been talk of DCX ditching the short-wheelbase vans altogether. Speaking of the interior, of course the Stow 'n Go seats will show up, but there are also some slick surprises inside the new vans.

Continued after the jump

[Source: Allpar.com]

Continue reading The US Minivan's last stand - Chrysler to debut 2008 Minvans at Detroit

 

[via] Autoblog

Geneva Debut for Audi A5 set

Filed under: , , ,

Audi Nuvolari concept

Audi will introduce its new A5 coupe the Geneva Motor Show according to the UK's Autocar. Quoting an unnamed "senior company source," We've been following the progress of the A5 for some time now, and we're ready to see the finished product, which is likely to bear a more-than-passing resemblance to the automaker's 2003 Nuvolari concept (shown above).

A Geneva debut makes sense, based on what we learned from an October Popular Mechanics report that stated the car will be available in Europe this spring. Look for the car to arrive with Audi's 4.2L V8, six-speed manual and automatic transmissions, as well as a DSG. The other new news Autocar reports is that the A5 chassis will be tunable to deliver essentially any kind of handling characteristic the mission calls for. For example, the standard cars could be designed to understeer or be neutral-handling machines, while possible sport variants (think S or RS) could be more willing to oversteer than in the past -- it all depends on what Audi determines its customer base is looking for. This enhanced level of flexibility will trickle down to the rest of the model range over time as the other cars adopt the new platform.

Obviously, we're looking forward to seeing what the finished product officially has to offer. Geneva's not that far off.

[Source: Autocar via The German Car Blog]

 

[via] Autoblog

Toyota nailed with 2 billion yen in back taxes

Filed under: , ,

The Asahi Shimbun is reporting that Toyota just got hit with a 2 billion yen bill for failure to report about 6 billion yen in taxable income from as far back as March 2004. Although the Nagoya Regional Taxation Bureau discovered Toyota's omissions, they didn't make an official announcement. But Asahi's sources reported that the back taxes were levied because Toyota sold parts below their market value to two overseas subsidiaries. It was mainly Camry parts going to Australia that allowed indirect payments to Middle Eastern sales agents.

That meant they could cut their taxable income by about 2 billion yen. This money was apparently used to help finance sales promotions at the subsidiaries and to further help improve their financial results. The tax authority determined that these discounted exports were basica lly just subsidiary subsidies (try saying that tens times fast). They found that Toyota also padded expenditures by half a billion yen on advertising and had improperly accounted for a certain amount of tax-deductible costs. It's a pretty complex web of accounting gymnastics beyond that, but rest assured, the tax authority will figure it out. We're guessing this won't be the last we'll hear of this issue.

[Source: Asahi Shimbun]

 

[via] Autoblog

Barn Find: '55 Benz Gullwing

Filed under: , , ,

While the rest of us dream about things like that long-since-departed puppy we had as a child or Angelina Jolie in somethin' skimpy, classic car collectors dream of the barn find: a forgotten classic automobile sitting in a barn somewhere for decades, just waiting to be discovered. For some lucky collector, that dream will come true with this unrestored 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL "Gullwing" coupe.

The Gullwing remains one of the most venerated of classic automobiles. It wasn't much of a performer, but the styling set it apart from anything and everything else on the road. It also had the first gasoline engine with fuel injection.

This example, with a white finish and red leather interior, was recently found in a barn where it sat in storage, undriven, for the past 30 years. It's only had one owner since 1969, and while it looks pretty beat up, that just means it's ripe for a full restoration. The car is for sale, price upon request, from Aston Martin of New England. Good examples can easily sell for $400,000, so you can bet somebody's going to snatch this one up and give it the TLC it deserves.

[Source: Aston Martin of New England & Lotus Motorsports, inc. via German Car Scene]

 

[via] Autoblog

Spy Shots: Jaguar XF mule spotted

Filed under: , ,

We just showed you a whole gallery full of images of the upcoming Jaguar C-XF concept that is so important to the future of Jaguar. The concept will be seen in the flesh for the first time in Detroit next week, but we hope you're like us and wonder what the "production version" will look like when the new XF (formerly known as the S-Type) finally filters down to the showroom floor. Well thanks to those shutterbugs at KGP Photography, we have a few glimpses at what the future holds. Although the front and rear of this test mule are heavily cloaked, you can see lights, grille and overall shapes from this series of spy photos. An d the whole side is relatively naked, showing off the more conventional door handles and smoothed body panels that most expected.

One big difference seems to be the more traditional roofline of the near-production version under the cladding. Closer to a CLS than the C-XF show car, this raised roof should help taller back seat passengers feel more comfortable sitting upright. As we reported previously, the new XF will not use aluminum in its construction to help speed up the production development process and cut costs. The interior should mimic the XK's cockpit, and engines will also be familiar, with the XF-R (?) getting the XKR's 420-bhp supercharged V8. A six-speed automatic also will be standard across the entire model range.

[Source: Winding Road]

 

[via] Autoblog

DCX minivans appear online ahead of Detroit

Filed under: , , , ,


click on either image to see high resolution version

Truth be told, we kind of feel bad for DaimlerChrysler that these two shots showing the 2008 Chrysler Town and Country and Dodge Caravan popped up on a Spanish forum early this morning. We've known about it all morning, but considering how important these vans are to DCX, we weren't interested in being the first ones to distribute them to the masses and draw the ire of a very angry Chrysler Group. But, these pics are quickly popping up all over, and we feel we're in the clear showing them to you now. No more information about the vans is available, so let's just talk about the styling. What do you think?

[Source: Foro-mopar.extreme.org]

 

[via] Autoblog