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.
After one of the harshest winters in memory, America’s northern extremities are finally starting to thaw out. Along with chirping birds and sunshine, spring has brought warmer temperatures. But just because nice weather has arrived doesn’t mean you should ignore vehicle maintenance.
According to a recent study, husbands and wives are the worst backseat drivers with 40 percent of men saying their wives are the most annoying backseat drivers, and 34 percent of women citing their husbands are the most irritating.
Top 10 Large Sedans With the Greatest Range
There’s something magical about going on a road trip. Whether it’s the allure of visiting a far-flung destination or just the call of the highway, piling into a car and eating up miles satiates mankind’s wanderlust.
Of course some vehicles are better for long-distance drives than others. A quiet interior, comfortable seats and smooth ride are prerequisites, but plentiful cup holders and storage spaces for snacks can’t hurt, either.
In a lot of ways large sedans were tailor-made for cross-country trips. They’re roomy, relatively efficient and don’t beat you up like a race-prepared Miata. Last week we examined 10 such cars, ranking them based on trunk space. This week we’re comparing those same four-doors but focusing on driving range.
We took each car’s EPA highway fuel-economy rating and multiplied it by the total gallons of fuel in their respective tanks to arrive at a maximum possible range. So, which of these full-figured cars is the ultimate bladder-buster? Click ahead to find out!
Land Rover is celebrating the completion of its millionth Discovery SUV today by launching a trip that will see the vehicle travel from its birthplace near Birmingham, U.K., to Beijing.
“This gruelling expedition will be visiting 13 countries and covering 8,000 miles, and it’s a fitting initiative to celebrate the one millionth vehicle,” said Phil Popham, group sales operations director for Jaguar Land Rover (JLR).
The journey will cover 8,000 miles and 13 countries in 50 days, following the path originally mapped for “The First Overland Expedition” in 1955, though that trip ended up diverting to Singapore. Unexpected changes seem less likely this time, given the day-and-night difference between automotive technology in cars today.
Nonetheless, there is an uncertain component aside from unpredictable road conditions: JLR aims to raise £1,000,000 for the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies’ water and sanitation project in Uganda as a part of the trip. That goal represents the most ambitious fundraising target for the company to date.
Travelling on the stated path will not only raise money for charity, but it will also take the team of four drivers through some of the company’s major markets. Visit http://www.ammado.com/community/125893 to make a donation to the campaign.
Popham wasn’t shy about making the trip sound devastatingly difficult, though it’s tough to sympathise with people who get paid to take a globally-publicized road trip in a posh luxury SUV. The send-off wasn’t bad either: Such memorable figures as Bear Grylls of the TV show Man Versus Wild, Sir Ranulph Fiennes and Polar explorer Ben Saunders attended the event among others.
While it’s probably a stretch to call a drive that breaks down to 160 miles per day anything other than leisurely, there’s definitely no harm in a long trip meant to raise money for charity — provided the money is made and there are plenty of snacks.
It’s probably worth mentioning that with four drivers that figure breaks down further to 40 miles per driver, per day. Our own editor-in-chief, Colum Wood, drives approximately the same distance in his daily commute to the AutoGuide office… each way. High ho Land Rover Discovery.
Nissan is promoting the 2012 Versa with some help from social media and comedian Adam Carolla. The My Versa Road Trip gives you the chance to create a virtual road trip for a chance to win a real one.
Earlier this week, Nissan launched a MyVersaRoadTrip.com, a Facebook Connect enabled website, where you can create your own road trip. Pick your own routes and a soundtrack to go along with it. While you’re at it, invite three Facebook friends to join you. Along with your road trip plan, tell Nissan why you should win a real road trip and share it with your social networks. The contest is on now until October 19, 2011.
Out of all the entries, six winners will be announced on November 14. They’ll win a 2012 Versa Sedan and take it on a 4 Day\3 night road trip with their friends. And as they take the trip, the winners will update the world on their progress via updates and photos on various social media platforms. There will also be stop-motion cameras inside and out of the Versas, and this footage will be used to create mini road-trip movies that will be submitted to an online film festival in January 2012.
Actor, comedian and TV personality Adam Carolla will also be joining in on the fun by taking his own road trip in a Versa. He’ll promote the contest by starring in a series of videos where he changes his name to ‘Adam Versa,’ heads to his hometown of North Hollywood and plays a “Hypothetical Road Trip Game.” But wait, there’s more! The September 21 episode of his podcast “The Adam Carolla Show,” will be changed to “The Adam Versa Show.” His guest will be Erich Marx, Nissan Director of Website and Social Media Marketing, and he’ll talk more about the My Versa Road Trip program, the 2012 Nissan Versa Sedan, and play the Hypothetical Road Trip game.
To enter the contest, go to MyVersaRoadTrip.com to plan your own road trip.
Making a pit stop on a road trip can eat up a lot of driving time. Perhaps that’s that drove Craig Henderson to create the Avion, a high-mileage vehicle that he drove from Canada to Mexico without stopping for gas.
Henderson took his prototype, which he helped build in 1984, from Blaine, Washington (on the U.S./Canada border) to Mexico. On this 1,478 mile trip, he burned 12.4 gallons of fuel in a record-breaking 119.1 mpg car.
He had plans to sell the car commercially, but that didn’t pan out for him and his partner, Bill Green. So, he kept the car, worked on perfecting it, improving the powertrain and making it more aerodynamic.
In order to keep its weight down, the Avion is built with an aluminum monocoque frame with steel front/rear crash and suspension subframes, allowing it to tip the scale at just 1,500 lb. Its wind tunnel-shaped body is made of carbon fiber, kevlar and fiberglass that is riveted and bonded in place, making its structure very stiff. Mounted behind the driver is its 800-cc diesel engine, and the rear wheels are powered through a five-speed gearbox.
Since it’s so light weight and offers low-resistance aerodynamics, the Avion only need 3 to 4 horsepower to keep a 55 mph pace. Henderson also secured a sponsorship from Goodyear – he used their low rolling resistance “Fuel Max” tires which help him reached 115 mpg averages. It turned it into a promotional stunt, starting from the U.S./Canadian border and driving all the way to the Mexican border without filling up.
Henderson’s odyssey started on August 29th. He drove the entire length of Interstate 5, only stopping for food, bathroom breaks and to sleep. When he reached his destination near Chula Vista, he’d burned an officially measured 12.4 gallons for an amazing 119.1 mpg fuel economy. His journey broke the 103 mpg Guinness world record the car had set on the same border to border run in 1986.