Chevy built the Volt for a smooth ride, but now engineers are putting the electric car to the test at General Motors' Milford Proving Grounds. Watch the Volt tackle potholes and a long stretch of cobblestones called Belgian Blocks.
Have you ever caught yourself thinking, "I wish I had a V-8?" Well, what if I told you that you could give your crappy car a V-8 rumble or even a V-10 scream for $40? Now, what if I told you that you wouldn't actually be getting any extra performance to go along with that sound? If you're still interested in this shady deal, then you're probably a poseur. In any case, you'll want to check out the SoundRacer.
The device plugs into your vehicle's cigarette lighter, where it uses fluctuations in the … Read more
Tesla often emphasizes that it works more like a Silicon Valley technology company than a traditional car company. And the company just proved it by delivering a model update to the Tesla Roadster for 2010. Remember, the Roadster has only been in production for one year, but in that time Tesla completely redesigned the interior, while at the same time adding new materials to reduce cabin noise. Model updates from other automakers often take five years.
We spent a day with the 2010 Tesla Roadster Sport, enjoying its unique driving experience and finding these updates made the previous generation car seem like something hacked together in a garage. Where the previous car had a fussy little lever for putting it in drive, the new car uses push buttons. To check battery statistics and change the drive mode, you had to use a touch screen by your left knee. That touch screen has been moved to the center of the dashboard. And in a real step toward convenience, the Tesla Roadster now comes with a glove box.
Externally, the casual observer won't see much difference. The Tesla Roadster uses the same Lotus-sourced body clad in carbon fiber. But the carbon fiber stands out more, as clear-coat panels make up the hood, spoiler, and even the insets in the rear air intakes. The suspension is now adjustable for comfort or sport, and the all-new Sport version of the Roadster uses an upgraded power train that rockets it to 60 mph in 3.7 seconds, faster than the standard Roadster's 3.9 second time. … Read more
Before we drove it, the idea of an X5 M seemed outlandish, and we suspected BMW's motives had more to do with marketing than the company's engineering reputation. How could an X5 all-wheel-drive SUV live up to the M badge? We should have trusted BMW, whose engineers are so pure of heart they would never let a vehicle wear the M that didn't deserve it. The X5 M is a monstrously powerful beast that handles like a sports car. In fact, we had to drive up next to other cars for a height comparison to remind us … Read more
Most car guys know that carbon fiber is lightweight (and very cool-looking), but most don't know much past that. We stopped by well-known carbon fiber manufacturer Seibon's booth at the 2009 SEMA show to get the skinny on this miracle material.
The term "carbon fiber" can be used to describe microscopically thin fibers composed mostly of carbon atoms, the yarns composed of those fibers, or the fabric woven from that yarn. For our purposes, the term will be used to describe composite materials created from carbon fabric suspended in resin or plastic.
Carbon fiber parts are … Read more
A record for a Tesla Roadster driven on a single charge was set at 313 miles (501 km) in Australia on Tuesday.
Tesla Roadster owner Simon Hackett and his friend Emilis Prelgauskas drove his electric sports Global Green Challenge.from Alice Springs, Northern Territory, to Coober Pedy, South Australia, as part of an alternative-fuel vehicle rally called the
The Tesla's electric-charge port door was sealed shut at the start of the 313-mile journey and the trip was filmed for a documentary, as well as monitored by contest officials. The Tesla's lithium ion battery, which the company assures … Read more
At the 2008 SEMA Show, Rhys Millen Racing (RMR) massaged one of the first available Hyundai Genesis Coupes into a wild, wide-bodied racer with a huge turbo and some crazy aero. For 2009, RMR plans to raise the bar with its RM460--a midengine, V-8-powered Genesis Coupe.
RMR started by yanking out the Coupe's stock 2.0T engine, as well as the rather useless back seats. After a good deal of bending, fabricating, and welding, the new engine bay (located just behind the driver's seat) was ready for the RM460's new ticker. Rather than reusing the stock I-4 … Read more
When the name "Toyota" is heard, these days most thoughts jump straight to Prius or Camry, but that hasn't always been the case. There once was a time when all-wheel drive Celicas, midengined MR2s, and twin-turbocharged Supras could be found at your local Toyota dealer and gracing adolescents' walls in poster form. Toyota used to be fun. Perhaps it still can be.
Witness the dramatic return of the Toyota Supra, only this time it's not a Supra. Heck, it's not even a Toyota. It is the Lexus LF-A.
While the LF-A may not share a … Read more
In an amusing little photo gallery over at the Top Gear site, the Stig, the famed tame racing driver, gets the Honda Insight and Toyota Prius off the ground. The feature promises a lot at the beginning (just like we are doing here), but proceeds with a fairly standard test between the Toyota Prius and Honda Insight, mostly comparing them on fuel economy and drivability through London and at the Millbrook test track.
But they eventually come to the good stuff, describing what happens when Stiggy starts doing laps in the Prius and the Insight. Top Gear even reaches a … Read more
The Lincoln MKS with an EcoBoost V6 engine is put to the ultimate challenge for speed and handling against four European luxury V8s up Loveland Pass, Colo. The challengers are the Maserati Quattroporte, the Jaguar XF, the BMW 550i, and the Mercedes E550.
Unfortunately, no real details of the challenge, such as fuel economy braking and handling, are released. More details about the challenge can be found at 6versus8.com.