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.
When it comes to supercars the upcoming McLaren P1 will be tough to beat… unless you’re an engineer at the company. In that case it should be “beat up” because the car was photographed undergoing durability testing in the desert.
EuroFOT, a European large-scale field test on driving safety, is finally concluded and suggests that safety systems like adaptive cruise control and collision warning systems reduce the risk of a crash by 42 percent.
Have you ever thought about cleaning your headlights? If not, you should. There are plenty of headlight cleaning kits out there, and according to Consumer Reports, even the most inexpensive or poorest quality ones can make a difference.
Since drivers are keeping their cars longer, it becomes more important to maintain this older fleet. And one of these maintenance issues is the oxidation that occurs on plastic headlight lenses. Oxidation causes an unsightly haze that reduces headlight illumination, and over time, can build up to become a dangerous problem.
Consumer Reports tried out a series of headlight cleaning kits, all under $25, and found that even the poorest quality kit dramatically improves light output. The kits that Consumer Reports tested included the 3M Headlight Lens Restoration System 29008 ($15), the Fast Brite Auto Headlight Restorer Kit ($17), the Sylvania Headlight Restoration Kit ($21) and the Turtle Wax Headlight Lens Restorer ($9).
After cleaning out the headlight lenses of various cars and testing them again a few weeks later, Consumer Reports found that even the poorest quality kit still made a difference in light output on badly weathered lenses. Sure, there’s some elbow grease involved, but if you’ve got an older car, these kits can really increase headlight brightness, which means you can see clearer in the dark.
After the jump, watch a Consumer Reports video on some helpful headlight cleaning tips.
[Source: Consumer Reports]
The new 911 Turbo will keep the same 3.8-liter horizontally opposed six cylinder engine as previous models, but it will have a new boost thanks to a complex tri-turbo setup similar to what BMW is using in the M550d xDrive and X5 M50d models, among others.
The system employs one smaller turbocharger and two larger ones. The smaller spools up more quickly at lower rpms, delivering an initial power boost that carries smoothly into the second and third larger units.
Although the horsepower ratings aren’t certain yet, the new system is expected to boost the 911 Turbo from 495 to 525 horsepower, which is quite close to the 530 hp 911 Turbo S.
Porsche is currently completing testing on the tri-turbo setup inside their 991, though further details can’t be that far off given that it’s slated for the 2013 model year.
GALLERY: 2013 Porsche 911 Turbo spy photos
[Source: Auto Car]
Pump up your tires and pump up your tank, there’s a new kind of fuel in town thanks to the Dearman Engine Company.
Well, that’s not totally true. The fuel is actually air in liquid form, so it isn’t actually new, but the London-based company that formed just under a year ago has managed to develop an engine that runs on it.
The system works by storing air at -256 degrees Fahrenheit in a tank before pumping it into a cylinder with what Dearman calls a heat exchange fluid. Once inside the chamber, the liquid air rapidly expands to propel the piston in the same fashion as a traditional internal combustion engine. The coolest part is that the system’s exhaust only emits air.
Tech stories about revolutionary new systems aren’t all that rare and they usually end by essentially saying “it’s really cool, but don’t expect it to ever be mainstream” and while that’s probably still the case here, Dearman is quick to point out that their motor relies solely on existing materials.
Truth be told, the air is actually just an energy catalyst. That means automotive applications would require a secondary power source to keep the tank chilled. It also seems that liquid air used as fuel would slowly disappear from cars that sat for a long time.
The system is currently being tested for real-world feasibility, but if it proves to be a workable system we speculate that it could play into a new gasoline or electric hybrid drivetrain somewhere in the future. If it ever happens, you could be “gassing up” with an air compressor while you check tire pressure. Watch the video after the jump to learn more.
Cadillac released its third teaser video for the 2013 ATS, their compact sport coupe. In the video, Cadillac engineers explain why they have focused their efforts so closely on gathering data at the Nurburing track, saying they can gather more data in one lap at “The Ring” than in twelve at any U.S. track.
Dave Mikels, energy and powertrain integration engineer, tells us that the car will experience full compression loading and being airborne during a lap. What that really speaks to is the company’s dedication to the ATS and making it a true performance machine.
With the Detroit Auto Show coming up next month, expect more details on the ATS very soon.
You can watch the video below
Consumer Reports has made allegations against Volkswagen that the company provided press vehicles that were built to a higher standard than versions sold to consumers.
Stories of “ringer” press vehicles are legend in the automotive world – most recently, Ferrari was accused of providing press cars that performed far better than customer cars. Now, the venerable consumer mag, which has made a name for itself by purchasing its own vehicles for road tests, has published photos and descriptions of a few key differences between the 2012 Passat they purchased, and the versions provided by Volkswagen by their press fleet.
The accusations hinge (no pun intended) on two plastic covers for the trunk hinge mechanism (pictured above). A VW press car had the covers installed to hide the bare metal hinges and wiring loom used on the Passat, but the customer cars purchased by CR didn’t have those. As CR’s Jon Linkov notes, if VW was willing to go the extra mile for a set of hinges, other crucial areas, like sound deadening, suspension tuning or engine performance could have been altered as well. Consumer Reports said that they’ve experienced these things before, and that it raises larger issues of impropriety.
Tesla teases us some more with the Model S electric sedan: this time, they show us three camouflaged examples running around a test track, as proof that yes, it is capable of moving under its own power.
And pretty quickly, too—the Model S is expected to go from 0 to 60 in under 6 seconds, under fully-electric power that allows it up to 300 miles before recharging. It will accomplish this with five adults and the option for two children facing backwards, like some futuristic Vista Cruiser, and will sell for around $57,000 after federal and state incentives. We know what it looks like, which renders the Palo Alto company’s secrecy moot. But alas, we’ll have to wait until next year to actually look at it up close.
Click the jump to watch the short teaser.
[Source: LA Times]
Chrysler is delivering 10 Ram 1500 Hybrids to the U.S Department of Energy for testing within the next week. The pickups will be delivered to Yuma, Arizona, as part of a $100 million research project. The program with the U.S Department of Energy will run through June 2014.
140 Ram 1500 pickups will be delivered by Oct. 1 across the U.S. These plug-in hybrid trucks we be put through grueling testing including extreme temperature testing with fluctuations from 25 below zero to 125 degrees.
The Ram trucks utilize 5.7-liter V8s making 345-hp. The engine is mated to a two-mode hybrid transmission manufactured by GM and a 12.9-kilowatt-hour lithium ion battery. These trucks will be capable of traveling 20 miles on electric-power alone with a total range coming in at 655 miles. The Ram is capable of towing 6,000 pounds and has a 1,000 pound payload capacity.
[Source: egm Car Tech]