AutoGuide News Blog
The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
To see the latest in car technology, be sure to check out the advancements in Formula 1 cars. They have engines with incredible amounts of power, superb aerodynamics that keep these little things on the ground and safety features that keep their drivers safe in the case of a high-speed crash.
There’s still an untold story in Formula 1 cars however; the brakes. Luckily the folks over at Brembo brakes have released a video explaining the design and function of its brake technology in Ferrari’s Formula 1 cars.
Videos like this are like candy to car-geeks like us, and its our pleasure to share them with you.
Check out the video below
Top Gear host Jeremy Clarkson is paid to piss you off, it’s what he does best. Maybe someone should have forwarded the memo to Tesla’s CEO, Elon Musk.
Musk probably should have taken Top Gear’s pot shots with a laugh and kept doing business, but it’s easy to understand why he might be feeling defensive. His company keeps hitting nasty potholes in the road to success, like the “bricking” problem that apparently compromises the battery system in Tesla vehicles, a costly repair.
This Top Gear drama started back to December 2008 when the show gave a mixed review to the Tesla Roadster. Their program said the car failed to meet its advertised 200-mile range, instead only achieving 55 miles. That figure came from running it on a track where any vehicle would have less than optimal range, electric or otherwise. They also bashed the Roadster for having deficient brakes.
Brakes and range aside, it’s essential to remember that Top Gear is first and foremost an entertainment program. The episode depicted crew members pushing a “dead” roadster into a hangar, though the facts emerged during Tesla’s lawsuit. Surprise, surprise, the car wasn’t dead and the shot was used for effect.
This isn’t terribly dissimilar to the infamous Bugatti Veyron versus McLaren F1 drag race episode, where the show managed to eek out a Veyron victory, only after several F1 first-place finishes. Again, Top Gear is for show first, reporting second.
British Justice Tugendhat threw Tesla’s claims out in October, 2011, saying the company’s lawyers needed to amend their malicious falsehood claims.
The final chapter, (one would assume), in this one-way pissing match closed today. Justice Tugendhat dismissed Tesla’s revised claim which said there were “reasonable grounds to suspect that each of the Claimants [Top Gear] had intentionally and significantly misrepresented the range of the Roadster by claiming that it had a range of about 200 miles in that its true range on the Top Gear track was only 55 miles”.
Hopefully Tesla can move past this cat fight and focus more on the bricking issue at hand. Small car startups have enough problems without taking British TV bullies to court.
Check out Tesla CEO Elon Musk discussing the Top Gear episode in the video after the jump.
[Source: The Truth About Cars]
A Chinese inspection agency has alleged that Toyota vehicles are responsible for several fatal accidents. China’s General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine claimed that the Toyota Camry, Prado and Reiz models have faulty brakes and drive shafts. The agency has yet to provide any details pertaining to the accidents , nor casualty information.
“All we know so far is what included in the agency’s statement,” said Toyota spokesman Liu Peng in an interview yesterday. “We are looking into the issue and will try to clarify the facts.”
Automobile ownership is steadily increasing, causing China’s government to increase efforts to control vehicle quality. Collisions have also spiked 36 percent to 3.9 million accidents in 2010, according to the Ministry of Public Security.
[Source: Left Lane News]
U.S safety regulators have begun investigating warranty claims regarding the brake effectiveness of the 2008 Mazda CX-9. The investigation surrounds leaking brake fluid that could affect the brakes of the 2008 CX-9, according to NHTSA.
So far, no injuries or crashes have been reported however, an estimated 37,000 vehicles could be affected. Information was sent to the NHTSA from Mazda regarding a period in the first quarter of 2008 to the third quarter of 2010, displaying a “high number” of warranty claims and reports for the affected CX-9.”When brake fluid leaks into the vacuum booster the driver can experience reduced brake effectiveness which can result in extended stopping distance,” the filing said. So far, a preliminary investigation has been launched that could lead to a recall if regulators determine the vehicle components to be unsafe.
Even though Mercedes-Benz‘s C250 CGI isn’t the most exciting of sedans, being part of its BlueEfficiency line, VÄTH has made the 1.8L model more powerful and more fun to drive. Their tuning package gives the C250 CGI the capability of hitting 270-hp, a major increase from the factory’s 204-hp.
For those looking for a nice increase in power without breaking the bank account, VÄTH offers a V25 tuning kit for around $1,535 U.S. which bumps power to 255-hp and 273 ft-lbs of torque. Max speed is also bumped up to 161 mph. But those looking for the 270-hp peak, an upgraded intercooler is available for around $1,430 and the sports exhaust system is $2,575. Those numbers are a bit pointless, however, as we don’t get the 250 model on this side of the Atlantic.
On the outside is a fine collection of carbon fiber goods: hood ($5,940), front lip ($1,815), rear diffuser ($2,270), and trunk spoiler ($425). A brake upgrade featuring 14-inch rotors in the front with 6-piston calipers and 12.5-inch rotors in the rear with 4-piston calipers can be had for around $6,860. A staggered set of 19-inch wheels complete with tires are priced at $5,180.
VÄTH mentions suspension upgrades in their press release, which sounds like a tuned coilover set of some sort, but details and pricing are left out. They close off the tuning package with some carbon fiber interior trim and Alcantara roof liner for $1,255.
GALLERY: VÄTH Mercedes-Benz C250 CGI
Official press release available after the break.
While most of the popular aftermarket manufacturers in Japan are welcoming the hybrid craze with open arms, Spoon Sports has been quiet as of late. This can mostly be attributed to the fact that Spoon focuses and specializes with the Honda platform, and quite honestly, Honda hasn’t had an attractive enough hybrid platform in the recent years. But this is all about to change, with the CR-Z gaining a lot of momentum as the new “hot-hatch” appealing to passionate Honda aficionados worldwide. Needless to say it’s a perfect fit for Spoon Sports and their tuning prowess.
We’ve seen the entry from Mugen and in typical Spoon Sports fashion, they’ve thrown down the gauntlet as well. Going back to the late 1990s and early 2000s, Mugen and Spoon Sports were the most respective pair of brands for JDM Honda fanatics stateside. In fact it’s easy to argue that Mugen and Spoon Sports delivered a rivalry on its own with their prestigious and rare parts, many of them carrying a hefty price tag once they were on American soil. There’s no mistaken that this CR-Z has been Spoon-inspired.
There’s none of the traditional yellow and pastel blue to be seen, yet, but the CR93 wheels have been refinished in a stylish dark blue in true Spoon fashion. As with almost all of Spoon Sports’ projects, the focus is on excellent tuning and track-ability. They paid close attention with suspension and brake upgrades lowering the vehicle with coilovers in the front and a traditional shock/spring combination in the rear. 15-inch slotted rotors along with upgraded calipers are probably overkill for the hatch, but we believe Spoon has much more in terms of performance up their sleeve.
Specializing in naturally aspirated performance over the years, Spoon is currently tuning their staple N1 exhaust system along with ECU upgrades for the CR-Z. No concrete numbers have been released yet, which is understandable given how new the technology is. We have faith though and it will be an exciting time to see two of Honda’s most notorious brands battling it out on the track again, this time with CR-Z hatchbacks hopefully flying the colors we’ve grown and love over the past decade.
GALLERY: Spoon Sports CR-Z
[Source: Spoon Sports]