Thursday, January 27, 2011
It is always tough to follow-up a hit; records, movies, restaurants, when you get something right the first time it can be a daunting task to do better. The Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG rocked the mid-sized performance sedan market when it stormed into BMW and Audi’s playground and laid an old-school smack-down of torque and tire smoke on its more reserved German competitors.
When Mercedes released photography of the 2012 C-Class, the first question was, how will this affect the C63? Well first the best news: AMG has decided to stay with the normally-aspirated 6.2-liter V-8 from the previous car. The burbling monster that really defines the car is rated at 451 horsepower and 443 pound-feet of torque. An optional AMG Development Package includes forged pistons, lightweight connecting rods, revised crankshaft and revised ECU programming and increases the horsepower figure to 481. The package also includes an increase in the speed limiter to 174mph, red brake calipers over two piece 14.2-inch front rotors, an AMG performance steering wheel and last but not least a carbon-fiber rear lip spoiler.
The C63 is equipped with AMG’s MCT single-clutch automatic transmission that is equipped with four different modes. One of those modes incorporates a launch-control feature to optimize performance off the line to satisfy your inner drag racer.
It sounds as if Mercedes and AMG have kept everything that made the previous car so good and simply replaced its few soft spots. The transmission will be a welcome addition as will some of the luxury features. Overall, we are just thrilled beyond belief that the big thumper of a V-8 is still under the hood.
Thanks to: Motor Trend
The trophy was received by Nissan Motor Co.'s President and CEO Carlos Ghosn, who of course, was extremely happy with the results.
"It is a great honor for Nissan LEAF to be recognized as the European Car of the Year - the first all-electric car to receive this distinction, " said Mr. Ghosn. "Like previous Car of the Year winners, Nissan LEAF is an appealing, competitive car, with no compromise on style, features, safety, performance or handling. Yet it stands apart as an innovative car that reflects a clear vision of the future of transportation - a vision of sustainable mobility."
Speaking at the ceremony Håkan Matson, president of the CoTY jury said: "I am convinced that we will see other electric cars named Car of the Year in the future. But when we do, we must always remember that only one can be the first. And that is why Nissan LEAF Car of the Year 2011 is - and will remain - so very special," said Håkan Matson, president of the CoTY jury, speaking at the ceremony.
You can view the results in detail here, but we'll remind you that the 58 jury members from 23 European countries placed the all-electric Nissan Leaf in first place with 257 points, followed by the Alfa Romeo Giulietta with 248 points and the Opel Meriva small MPV with 244 points. This is the second time Nissan has won the COTY, the first being in 1993 with the Micra, which became the first ever Japanese model to win the accolade.
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The 2011 Geneva Motor Show will host the world premiere of the Volvo V60 Plug-in Hybrid, a near production-ready model that is said to return a very impressive 125 mpg US (1.9 lt/100 km), with CO2 emissions under 50 g/km. In order to achieve this, engineers entered a new variable into the plug-in hybrid equation: a diesel engine.
The V60’s front wheels are driven by a 2.4-liter 5-cylinder turbo diesel powerplant capable of 215HP and 440 Nm (325 lb-ft) of torque, mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. At the back, there's a 70HP electric motor that powers the rear wheels and a 12kWh lithium-ion battery pack.
According to Volvo, the V60 Plug-in Hybrid “features the very best properties from three different car types in one sports wagon”, including an all-electric driving mode with a range of up to 32 miles (52 km).
“In order to get true car enthusiasts to think green, you have to offer them the opportunity to drive with low carbon dioxide emissions without taking away the adrenaline rush that promotes genuine driving pleasure. The V60 Plug-in Hybrid has all the traditional properties of a genuine sports wagon. What we've done is to spice it up with spearhead technology”, said Stefan Jacoby, President and CEO of Volvo Cars.
Jointly developed by Volvo and Swedish energy supplier Vattenfall, the V60 Plug-in Hybrid is scheduled to enter series production in 2012.
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Mahindra & Mahindra has launched its next-gen commercial vehicle, the Genio, in Mumbai. Targeting to a captive segment – small and medium business needs – the Genio pick-up is priced at Rs 4.99 lakh for the BS-III variant (ex-showroom Navi Mumbai). With the launch of the Genio, M&M is expecting to change the face of the pick-up industry in India.
The Genio single-cab pick-up will be the second product after Maxximo that will be rolled out of Mahindra’s new Chakan facility. The pickup has been developed from Mahindra’s Ingenio platform (U-platform) – the same platform which formed the basis of the Xylo MPV. This 1.2 tonne pickup will also be powered by the same mDi CRDe motor from the Xylo D2, but in a detuned state. The motor now produces 75bhp, 20bhp less than the Xylo D2, while the max torque remains identical at 22kgm.
Speaking at the launch, Dr. Pawan Goenka, President, Automotive & Farm Equipment Sectors, M&M said, “The Genio is a result of extensive consumer insight which captured the latent and expressed needs of the customer. The Genio is an ideal vehicle for businessmen, traders and SMEs. I am confident that it would be a game changer for the pickup segment in times to come.”
Mahindra already has its Bolero pick-up doing duty in the segment, which the manufacturer dominates with 75 percent market share. The segment has seen a growth of 5 percent in the pervious year and is expected to grow in double digits this year. The underperforming segment which had seen no new launches for the last four years – the most recent being the Bolero pick-up – needed fresh products to help it grow. The newly launched Genio will now directly compete with the Tata 207 Di.
On the occasion, Rajesh Jejurikar, Chief Executive, Automotive Division, M&M said, “The pickup industry in India is more than 6500 vehicles per month and growing. With the majority market share that we command, the onus is on us to offer superior products thereby driving the industry growth. Genio has been launched keeping this in mind.”
Launch of the Genio threatens to canablise the market share of Mahindra’s own Bolero pickup. However, Jejurikar is hopeful that the new product won’t eat up into Bolero’s market. He added, “Genio will not canablise Bolero’s market as they are targeted at different customer base. And even if it happens, it will help the segment grow overall.”
The Genio has been developed with an investment of Rs 225 crore and Mahindra claims that more products on the similar platform are in the pipeline. Looking at the value-for-money quotient of CNG powered vehicles; Mahindra is also working on a CNG powered variant of the Genio on priority basis, which will be followed by a double cab pick-up version on the similar platform in future.
At present, Mahindra’s Chakan plant has a capacity of manufacturing 2000 Genios per month, which can be expanded to meet with the market demands. Mahindra is also eyeing the export markets where it’s already selling the Scorpio and the Bolero pickups. “For now, the Genio has been developed for the Indian market only. We are looking at select export markets, but that will happen only after six months,” Goenka said.
The Genio is available in BS-IV variant as well which will be around Rs 15000-18000 dearer than the BS-III version. Offered in four attractive colour options – Silver Shine, Diamond White, Marvel Granite and Skyline Blue, the Genio will be available across 70 dealerships at the time of the launch. And by mid-February 2011, the pickup will be available across Mahindra CV dealerships pan India.
Thanks to: Autocar India
Porsche has revealed this limited edition Panamera 4S at the Qatar motor show in Doha.
The Porsche Panamera 4S Exclusive Middle East Edition will be limited to just 66 units for sale in the Middle East only. The special model is from Porsche Design and its interior is upholstered in bright Carrera Red leather, including the doors and dash, while the exterior paint finish is a special Carrera White Metallic paint finish.
The exterior colour is also used for the front air intakes, rear bumper, rear diffuser and the headlight washer system. It gets 20-inch Turbo II alloy wheels.
An Alcantara black headliner also features in the interior, which is trimmed with carbonfibre, and comes with a steering wheel and gear selector wrapped in black leather. The Porsche logo is embossed in the headrests of the red leather front seats and the key fob is made from the same material.
It comes with the standard 395bhp 4.8-litre V8 from the 4S complete with a seven-speed PDK gearbox and all-wheel drive. The Sport Chrono package is standard on the Middle East Edition.
Prices start from just over £100,000.
Thanks to: Autocar
Spot the difference! Honda has revealed a revised version of the Honda Accord, which includes a mildly updated look as well as a range of chassis and engine tweaks.
At the front Accord models now get a new bumper, grille and headlights but only the most eagle-eyed of motorists will be able to spot the subtle changes. Meanwhile, at the rear is a slightly reshaped bumper and re-styled lights.
There have been a few changes to the interior too including a silver finish for the door handles and handbrake. ES and EX models also get ambient blue lighting in the footwells too.
The biggest updates though, are unseen. Honda claims refinement has been improved with the use of targeted sound-deadening under the bonnet.
Improvements in efficiency have been made to the Accord's 148bhp 2.2-litre diesel engine, cutting CO2 emissions down to 138g/km – down from 147g/km. For estate models the figure now stands at 143g/km.
The 2.0-litre i-VTEC petrol engine has also seen CO2 emissions in the saloon cut from 168g/km to 159g/km.
There's a range of new viusal upgrades available too, including 17-inch alloys on ES and ES GT models as well as three new colours.
Thanks to: Auto Express
Think the street legal Volkswagen Race Touareg 3 Qatar is one insane SUV? We managed to spot two additional SUVs on display at the 2011 Qatar Motor Show that happen to walk — if not run — on the wild side.
With some legendary off-road credentials and nearly 507 horsepower on tap, the Mercedes-Benz G55 AMG is already a pretty outrageous (and ostentatious) SUV — but that hasn’t stopped the automaker from crafting a special Arabia Limited Edition model for the Middle Eastern market. Admittedly, the modifications are subtle, limited mostly to black trim pieces, wheels, and a single paint stripe down the sides of the vehicle.
Mechanically speaking, the G55 Arabia Edition is the splitting image of stock G55 models. Power still comes from a supercharged 5.4-liter V-8, and is mated to a five-speed automatic transmission and a four-wheel-drive system complete with locking front, center, and rear differentials.
Thanks to: Motor Trend
While the Race Touareg 3 caters to performance junkies, the new Touareg Gold Edition targets those seeking the most opulent SUV possible. Although the special Magic Morning white paint contains hints of gold, the SUV’s name stems directly from its exterior trim. The Gold Edition’s 22-inch wheels, roof rails, window frames, mirror caps, and other trim pieces are actually plated in 24-karat gold.
Inside, Gold Edition Touaregs are fitted with white Nappa leather seats and a matching headliner fashioned from Alcantara, while the dashboard — also trimmed in leather — receives a natural brown hue. Walnut burr accents are used throughout the cabin, many of which receive gold inlays.
Currently, both the Gold Edition and the homologated Race Touareg are billed as concepts, but there’s a fair chance each could see limited production. We overheard VW officials saying their “price is fixed, but volume is not.” Expect each to be built in small numbers, with most — if not all — headed to Middle Eastern markets.
Thanks to: Motor Trend
Most of the hubbub at the 2011 Qatar Motor Show surrounds Volkswagen’s small, fuel-sipping concept car, but the automaker also chose to debut two special-edition versions of its Touareg SUV at the same venue.
Of the two, perhaps the most adept at actually tackling the desert sands is the new Race Touareg 3 Qatar. As the name suggests, this is an evolution of Volkswagen’s diesel-powered race buggy (the same vehicle recently dominated the Dakar Rally), but is actually designed to be street legal — at least in Qatar. Lights have been revised as to comply with legal standards, while the interior is dressed up ever so mildly with leather door panel inserts, along with Recaro seats trimmed in Nappa leather.
Make no mistake: this is still a race-ready vehicle. If the retention of the roll cage (now painted Serpentino Grey metallic) and the race seating wasn’t enough of a tip-off, the powertrain itself should be. Like the actual race-spec Race Touareg 3s, the street-legal version makes use of a 2.5-liter, twin-turbocharged, 2.5-liter I-4, which churns out 305 horsepower. Partnered with both a five-speed sequential gearbox and an all-wheel-drive system, the Race Touareg 3 Qatar is still capable of sprinting from 0-60 mph in less than six seconds and reaching a top-speed of 117 mph off-road.
Much as we like the notion of purchasing a street-legal rally weapon, we think more buyers will be interested in Volkswagen’s other introduction.
Thanks to: Motor Trend
Toyota has released a teaser image of the FT-86 II sports car concept, which the automaker confirms will debut at the Geneva auto show in early March. The FT-86 II is, of course, a sequel to the FT-86 that was shown at the 2009 Tokyo show, and it’s still officially in concept status. The same goes for its Subaru brother, a concept of which is also set to bow in Geneva, but bear in mind that neither is far removed from the production designs that will eventually arrive in dealerships.
Thanks to the magic of Photoshop, we’ve lightened Toyota’s teaser image for a clearer look at the car. The pic reveals squinty headlights and a big mesh lower grille that resembles our earlier rendering of the FT-86. The company promises this car demonstrates its “reborn passion” for sporty cars, something that has been missing from Toyotas of late.
Both the Toyota and Subaru versions of the car may bow in production form on their home turf at the Tokyo auto show this December—two years after the original Toyota FT-86 concept first saw the light of day. While we know the cars will use boxer engines and rear-wheel drive layouts, many questions remain, including whether turbocharging or all-wheel drive are on the agenda for either. For the Toyota, we’re expecting a final name that somehow includes the number 86, especially in light of the company’s recent trademark filing for a boxer-engined “86″ logo.
Keep an eye out during our coverage of the Geneva show for more information on the FT-86 II and Subaru concepts and—hopefully—the production versions, too.
Thanks to: Car and Driver
While debuting a super-fuel-efficient VW concept may have seemed out of place in Qatar, using an auto show in the land of the oil-rich to unveil a special-edition Gallardo seems just about right. The two-tone Gallardo Bicolore will be offered only with all-wheel drive as an LP560-4 in other markets, but the version that makes it to us will drive just the rear wheels—à la Gallardo Valentino Balboni—and be dubbed LP550-2. (Yes, that means our cars will make 10 fewer horsepower.)
Aside from the welcome fact that it means more rear-wheel-drive Gallardos coming to our shores beyond the sold-out Balbonis, this special edition is basically an appearance package. But what an appearance it is. The blacked-out greenhouse—which starts at the base of the windshield and extends to the area between the taillights—lends a very tailored look to an already svelte-seeming vehicle. It accentuates the flowing line from front fender to rear haunch, quite possibly making it the best-looking Gallardo yet. Gloss black is applied to the front splitter, air intakes, and rear diffuser. The normally optional glass engine cover is standard here, providing an unobstructed view of the 542-hp V-10 that powers the rear wheels.
The not-black part of the car is available in five shades with names—like all Lambo colors—so wonderfully Italian we just have to share them: Giallo Midas (yellow), Arancio Borealis (orange), Grigio Telesto (gray), Bianco Monocerus (white), and Blu Caelum (blue). The interior gets a dark leather treatment set off by contrasting stitching that corresponds to the exterior color on all but the white car (that one, like the gray car, uses gray thread, too).
One important distinction between this and the Balboni: the transmission. Whereas Valentino’s car came with the six-speed manual, offering Lamborghini’s e-gear transmission as a $10K option, the Bicolore comes only with the single-clutch e-gear automatic.
A total of 222 Bicolores will be offered worldwide. The LP550-2 version will be available here in March starting at $194,000, which is well under the price tag for the e-gear–equipped Balboni ($235,795). Oh, and fuel economy? Leave that to the VW.
Thanks to: Car and Driver
“We needed to fix a position for the rear wing, based on the aerodynamics of the road car, which gave the levels of downforce we were looking for,” said the championship’s technical director, Peter Riches. “I am pleased to say that this was quickly achieved, and it means that we now have a base line for all cars built to the NGTC regulations and have saved a lot of development time and potential expense for the teams.”
|Toyota Avensis BTCC concept 2010|
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The tuning house begins from the outside with numerous carbon fiber parts including the front bumper (€7,799), brake cooling ducts (€1,259), front spoiler (€1,799), rear bumper (€4,799), rear diffuser (€3,799) and fixed wing (€1,999).
Next up are the engine and exhaust system upgrades (€6,048), which help boost output to 600HP and 580Nm of peak torque. Stopping power can be further improved with MOV´IT-CER ceramics brake calipers, but at a ludicrous cost of €21,990.
Those sexy looking alloy wheels sized 20-inch up front and 21-inch at the back with Dunlop Sport Maxx tires are priced at €4,599, while the tune is completed with an aluminum coil-over suspension for €7,349.
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If you want to prevent tire harm you ought to test your tire's air pressure one time a month.
The proper tire pressure is found on the vehicle placard & can be found in the car owner's manual, beneath the gas tank lid , all along the driver's side door edge, and all along the door post.
Your air pressure found on the side of your tire is not the right air pressure for your car. That number is the utmost air pressure for the tire. Always also bear in mind to test the air in your spare tire.
Make sure you test your tire pressure one time a month. Inaccurate air pressure often is the principal cause of tire destruction
Failure to keep your tires properly inflated can encourage wear and will have a negative effect on your autos handling.
If you are checking and adjusting tire pressure, the following need to be kept in mind:
Check the air pressure at the time the tire is cold. Tires get hot even after traveling just a mile. If you have to drive to pump air to your tire, confirm your air pressure just before you leave. Air pressure moves 1-2 pounds for every 10 degrees of temperature difference. Air pressure goes up in warm weather and down in cold weather conditions.
To avoid hydroplaning and skidding your tires have to have proper tread depth. The minimum tread depth is 1/16th of and inch.
Ask over anyone to tell you the best technique to verify your tread depth, and they are going to tell the penny test. What's the penny test? Get a penny and rest it in the tread of your tire. If part of Lincoln's head is covered by the tread, the tires have enough tread. In the event you can see Lincoln's entire head, you should buy a new set of tires.
Your car tire pressure needs to be the same on the tires of each axle, but may be different on the front and rear axle.
Valve caps have to be tightly closed to defend the valve from dust and filth and prevent it from leaking. Install absent valve caps immediately.
Use this opportunity to inspect your tires to be certain that you have nothing stuck in them or they have no deformities.
Be certain to regularly inspect your tread depth.
If you ever think you have uneven wear it is best to take your car to your tire dealer.
Repeated tire rotation extends tire life. The best way to avoid uneven wear and tear is to have your tires rotated every 6,000 - 8,000 miles or as specified in your vehicle's owner manual.
Curbs may demonstrate to be great trouble to your tires.
Make sure you trade your tires with the same type of tires that came on your car's original equipment. This consists of tire size, type and speed rating.
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Personalised Number Plates
Not all Sites are Genuine
Check Out the Reviews - Google Does!
So when it comes to getting car number plates via the web, you can't go wrong if you check out the customer reviews and testimonials. These are most always written by people just like you who have used the company and have been supremely satisfied. This sort of feedback is important, especially when it comes to shopping online and rumours say is already being used by Google when deciding who to put into their results, especially it seems for the local 'Places' listings. So if others have used a website and have been satisfied enough to write good things about it, then there is no reason to believe that your experience will be any different. So go ahead and order.
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