January 17 , 2008, According to the World Health Organization
an estimated 1.2 million people lose their lives every year due to car accidents. With the hope of reducing that number, European researchers are developing a Collision Warning System (CWS) for cars, an early warning device which will warn drivers of dangers ahead and may give them enough time to avoid a crash.
January 17, 2008 - Talk about making an entrance – the smart
fortwo and the Mercedes-Benz
E-Class travelled 4400 kilometres over seven days from Los Angeles to the Detroit Auto Show
. In the trip, which aimed to measure fuel economy in real world conditions, the smart fortwo mhd recorded an average fuel consumption of 4.8 litres per hundred kilometres, the two smart fortwo cdis recorded 3.9 L/100 km, and the business saloon E 320 BLUETEC recorded 5.8 L/100 km.
have emerged of the MITSUBISHI Concept-RA
coinciding with its global premiere at the 2008 North American International Auto Show
. Using an aluminum space frame body and impact -resistant, recyclable plastic resin for the as engine hood, fenders and other outer panels to reduce weight, enhance fuel economy and improve safety, the sports coupe concept combines Mitsubishi's Super-All Wheel Control system control system and twin clutch automated manual transmission used in the Lancer Evolution X with a turbo-charged, 2.2-liter clean-diesel engine that delivers a maximum output of 150 kW (204 PS) and maximum torque of 420 Nm (42.8 kg-m). In line with the earlier design sketches, the powerful message the car shoots for is accentuated by strongly flared arches housing 21-inch wheels and red is the color of choice for the sporty exterior, contrasting with the matte black engine hood.
January 16, 2008 We’ve written before about the coming of Fisker Automotive
and its highly credentialed designer/CEO Henrik Fisker, though we weren’t exactly expecting a hybrid when the premium sports car company announced its first production car at NAIAS
. The Fisker Karma is a four-door plug-in hybrid with a solar panel roof, regenerative braking, a light weight body, does 0-60 mph in less than 6 seconds and will have a top speed beyond 125 mph when it goes on sale late in 2009 for a projected US$80,000. The drive train is entirely electric though the car has a small gasoline engine that runs the generator, which charges the lithium ion battery pack. This allows the car to be driven for up to 50 miles a day provided the car is charged every evening.
January 16, 2008 Audi looks set to create a new class of road-going supercar following the first showing of its R8 TDI Concept at NAIAS this week. Using the V12 6.0-liter bi-turbo TDI engine first seen in the forthcoming Q7 V12 TDI SUV
, the 6.0-litre twin-turbo V12 with 500 bhp is similar in basic concept to the R10 TDI’s 5.5-litre race engine
, and delivers – wait for it - 1,000Nm of torque - between 1,750rpm and 3000 rpm, guaranteeing the effortless delivery of a 4.2-second 0-62mph acceleration time and a top speed in excess of 186mph. The 4WD beauty has a full set of goodies, such as Audi’s magnetic adaptive suspenders, it already meets the proposed EU6 emission limits expected to apply from 2014 and comes with a GPS system that incorporates race circuit information and centrifugal force / boost pressure data when the car is in race mode. Hey guys, you’ve gotta make this one!
January 15, 2008 In more news from the 2008 NAIAS
, Lexus has taken the wraps off a roadster-version of its LF-A sports car concept. The open-top supercar uses a "front-mid" configuration of the high-revving, 500 hp V10 engine from company's LF-A coupe
, first unveiled in Detroit back in 2005, and the body is also based on the Coupe's carbon-fiber and aluminum structure with the addition of a speed adaptive rear wing.
Buying a hybrid is currently a pastime for early adopters and those who are prepared to pay to salve their environmental conscience . Do the return-on-investment (ROI) math and you’ll realize that the fuel savings never bridge the economic rationale gap because of the higher initial cost of hybrids. That appears about to change! Ultra-capacitor-based energy storage systems have long promised a breakthrough for the automotive industry and AFS Trinity
’s announcement of the real world performance specs of its plug-in Extreme Hybrid (XH) technology is landmark. In just completed road tests, a 2007 Saturn VUE Green Line SUV fitted with an XH drive train, exceeded 150 mpg, and improved the zero to sixty time from 12.5 seconds, to 11.6 second running in electric-only mode – something it can do for 40 miles at a stretch. The punchline is that in hybrid mode, it runs 0-60 mph in 6.9 seconds
, which is faster than a Porsche Cayenne. Whatsmore, based on driving 340 miles a week, the company’s consumer payback analysis
suggests the technology will pay for itself in less than four years – this appears to be the first economically viable, commercially-available hybrid auto technology.
January 15, 2008 Talk about hitting the ground running - three young design students, fresh out of college, fronted up for their first day of work at GM
and instead of a week of fetching coffees, their first assignment was to produce concepts for a new, compact, youth-oriented off-road Hummer
. The three students' input drove the design of the new Hummer HX concept, which has sparked a lot of excitement among Hummer fans. Open-topped, with a configurable rear roof section, removable body panels and an E85-capable engine, the HX concept will debut shortly at the 2008 North American International Auto Show
– and it's rumored to be the base for the upcoming H4 production SUV
January 15, 2008 The Ford Motor Company is using the North American International Auto Show
to introduce its vision for the future of the small car segment captured in the Verve Concept. Aiming to bring a new level of style and sophistication to the small car platform, both the four and three-door body styles of the fuel-efficient, 4-cylinder Verve are being unveiled in Detroit. The four-door is the basis for the production vehicle that will be sold in North America from 2010 with the European three-door (which appeared at the 2007 Frankfurt Motor Show
) being shown to test market reaction to the bodystyle in the U.S.
January 14, 2008 Drawing on design elements showcased in the Aero X
concept and hinting at the company's plans to enter the crossover vehicle segment, Saab unveiled its four-seat 9-4X BioPower Concept at the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS
). The Concept's key features include the use of a four-cylinder, 2.0-liter, 300 horsepower (221 kW) BioPower turbo engine coupled with the Saab XWD powertrain already available in the 9-3 range.