We have spent a good deal of time over the past few months complaining about the navigation systems in Mercedes-Benz models. As we found in the 2007 Mercedes E550, the E320 BlueTec, and the SL550 models, the Benz COMAND solution for onboard tech fails to live up to its cars' world-renowned performance credentials. With its small, poorly rendered navigation screen buried at knee-level in the center stack and fidgety controls, the existing system leads had us tearing our hair out more than once.
General Motors seems to be waking up to the idea that there might be something in this whole small-car thing. Unveiling three new minicar global concepts this morning at the 2007 New York International Auto Show, GM's design chief Bob Lutz disclosed the blindingly insightful revelation that "small cars can be cool, bold, stylish, and fun." GM used the first press conference slot of the show to unveil three Korean-designed compact cars: the Chevrolet Groove, Beat, and Trax concepts.
The four-door Groove features an upright front windscreen, flared fenders and a short snout, which according to Chevy, … Read more
Volkswagen, Honda, and Toyota picked up the laurels at this morning's IAG Automotive Advertising Awards at the kickoff event for the 2007 New York International Auto Show. Commercials for the Volkswagen Passat Wagon, the Honda Pilot, and the Toyota Yaris won the awards for most-liked ad; best nameplate launch, and best new nameplate launch, respectively.
We're going to be wrestling the crowds at the Javits Convention Center here in Manhattan to bring you the scoop on the latest models as they are unveiled.
Remember those guys who would ride their Stingrays off the end of the pier? Well apparently they're finally in charge over there at the military industrial complex, and the aquatic world of hooah is all the better for it.
Case in point: a Gibbs Technology and Lockheed Martin team has announced the development of three new, high-speed, amphibious prototypes for use in littoral and riverine special ops insertions.
"High performance on the water, high performance on the ground and the transition between the two is seamless," brags Kiwi Alan Gibbs, chairman of Gibbs Technologies of his high-speed … Read more
We've barely managed to get our breath back following our review of the 2007 Shelby GT500, and now Ford has unveiled a more powerful version of its resurrected muscle car. The 2008 Ford Shelby GT500KR (the last two letters stand for "King of the Road," in case you were wondering) will make its official debut at this week's New York auto show. The GT500KR will feature a tweaked version of the GT500's 5.4-liter supercharged V-8, capable of an estimated 540 horsepower.
According to Ford, the KR's advanced ignition timing, cold air intake system, … Read more
New Treos these are not, but Palm did have some news to share at CTIA 2007. Today, the company introduced a number of hands-free car solutions, including the Palm GPS Navigator Car Kit for the Treo 750 and the Treo 680, as well as some new cases (umm, yay?).
The Palm GPS Navigator Kit is specifically made for the new, slimmer Treos (other Treo owners can get the same solution from the Palm GPS Navigator Smartphone Edition) and features a cradle with an integrated GPS receiver and a speakerphone--just snap your Treo 680 or Treo 750 into place, and you … Read more
Listen up, Microsoft. If you want to get people's attention with a pink product, you're going to have to do more than just change the color.
Take the "Street Mouse," for example--a mouse that's been turned into a pink race car complete with "sports alloy style wheels, tinted windows and working blue LED headlights ideal for those dimly lit evenings on the Internet." Chip Chick notes also that this isn't a toy but an ergonomically designed 800 dpi mouse too.
That's a lot better use of R&D money than … Read more
It always weirds me out a little bit when companies come up with "traditional" toys based on video games. You know, like that Nintendo Monopoly board game from a few months back. Now, according to Kotaku, Nintendo has officially licensed a Mario Kart race track. I suppose this is the company's way of reaching out to an audience that might be too young for video games, so that it can indoctrinate them into the Cult of Nintendo.
I suppose a parallel example would be if Apple released a toy iPod for little kids. That'd be weird, … Read more
If you ever thought the Mini Cooper wasn't mini enough, listen up. Last year, DaimlerChrysler announced that they'd be making the Smart ForTwo, the uber-compact car that it's been selling in Europe for years (and more recently Canada), available to U.S. customers by 2008. Looks like they're still on track for that. Now, us Yanks can put our names in the hat for a $99 reservation.
The "Pure" basic model of the car sells for $12,000. There's also a "Passion" version with a souped-up stereo system (and more) for $… Read more
Say hello to perhaps the least aerodynamic, solar-powered car in the world. With a top speed of about 30 mph and a total length approaching 20 feet, the car is powered by batteries, which are charged by four 170-watt solar panels. Despite being a two-seater, its top speed is less than half that of the solar-powered golf carts we recently saw in Florida.
The car, built in Dubai, has no air conditioning, just "like a Formula 1 car," according to its designer, Bin Saif. We're not sure that the parallel is warranted.