At the 2008 Detroit Auto Show, diesel cars grabbed their share of the limelight, as manufacturers such as Audi, Mercedes-Benz, and BMW prepare to import new diesel vehicles to the U.S. New diesel engines promise performance equivalent to gasoline cars but much better mileage, and new technology means cleaner emissions.
The Visteon/3M demonstration vehicle, a BMW X5 fitted with numerous modifications for instrumentation, interior materials, switch gear, and lighting, was unveiled in the Visteon tent at 2008 CES. One of the more interesting features of this car is its virtual instrument cluster, using LCD displays for the speedo and tach, and a 3D center display showing route guidance. 3M provided materials to create a 3D effect, which makes graphical arrows indicating upcoming turns seem to float over the map background. The 3D effect only shows up when you are looking straight on at the display, such as in the … Read more
Another year comes to a close and we consider all the amazing cars we've reviewed. For this year's Car Tech Awards, we've nominated 10 cars in the contest for the 2007 Tech Car of the Year. You can look at the nominees, find out why we selected each one, and cast your vote. We will take the result or our reader poll and the votes of our staff judges to decide the 2007 Tech Car of the Year, which we will announce on January 14, 2008. We also have a set of additional awards for such categories … Read more
Magna will be making a "Sport Activity Vehicle," or SAV, for BMW's Mini line of cars, both companies announced this week.
Magna , a company that designs, develops, and manufactures automotive systems, worked with BMW before on its BMW X3 (shown left).
"By outsourcing production of the Mini SAV, BMW Group is able to increase flexibility within its own production network," BMW said in a statement.
We saw driverless cars crawl across the desert in 2005, then negotiate an urban environment earlier this year, and now BMW built one for the racetrack. This video shows a clip from last Sunday's Top Gear episode where presenter Jeremy Clarkson gets taken for a ride around the track in a BMW 330i that can drive itself. Although Clarkson sits in the driver's seat, the various camera angles make it clear he is not touching the pedals, shifter, or steering wheel. You can tell he wants to hit the brakes as the car approaches turns at speed, braking … Read more
There are several powerful LED systems to improve road vision in cars, and just as many for bicycles to be seen by them. But with so many night-vision solutions apparently in search of a problem, there must be a way to make the technology widely available for safer driving after dark.
Digital imaging company Flir Systems, which specializes in infrared photography, has taken a step toward that goal with a deal to install its "PathFindIR" thermal imaging technology in BMWs, according to Gadget Venue. The system improves illumination and detects heat (as in warm bodies) as well, displaying … Read more
The Los Angeles Auto Show wraps up this weekend. I drove down to the Los Angeles Convention Center last week to check out the new BMW M3--which I hope to buy next year--and get a look at all the other new cars debuting there.
There were two clear trends at the show: higher performance and increased environmental sensitivity. The best new vehicles show improvements in both areas.
Surrounded by a Lamborghini, a Cadillac Escalade, and a Range Rover, the little 1957 BMW Isetta seems out of place in the Al & Ed's Autosound booth at the 2007 Los Angeles Auto Show. But the car is as high tech as they come, and gets better gas mileage than most cars at the show. The restored Isetta isn't exactly original--Al & Ed's Autosound is a major aftermarket retailer and installer in Southern California, and the company fitted the little two-seater with all the latest infotainment gear. A Kenwood touch-screen monitor is mounted to the front of … Read more