2015 Detroit NAIAS Auto Show

Automotive

New Freightliner – the first Class 8 truck designed in the windtunnel

May 7, 2007 With fuel economy becoming a crucial factor in freight transportation, it was only a matter of time before our biggest road users began using the windtunnel to optimise performance and Freightliner’s new Cascadia is the first Class 8 truck designed this way. The result is a 3 percent improvement in fuel economy over previous models. When developing the Cascadia, Freightliner studied the needs of drivers and how they operate their vehicles. This feedback was the basis for design features like a wider cab with automotive styling, ergonomic controls, and extensive lighting and storage space to make the cab more comfortable and livable. The Cascadia will be available for order next week, with trucks rolling off production lines in August.  Read More

May 5, 2007 Mercedes-Benz has opened up a new dimension in refinement for open-top super sports cars with the news that it will release a roadster version of its SLR McLaren super sports car in September. Using carbon fibre technologies developed from its Formula 1 cars, the roadster will be endowed with a high degree of safety as well as extreme torsional stiffness at the same high level as the coupe version. Performance will also be identical to that of the coupe, with a maximum speed of 332 km/h and an AMG V8 compressor engine delivering 460 kW/626 bhp. Developed and built at the McLaren Formula 1 complex in Woking (UK), the company refined the aeroacoustics of the new car in the team’s wind tunnel to ensure conversation is still possible at well over 200 km/h with the top down.  Read More

The basis of the new ZF automatic transmission generation is an entirely new transmission ...

May 4, 2007 Driveline specialist ZF has designed a new automatic transmission generation for passenger cars combining seemingly contradictory goals. Presented for the first time at the 28th International Vienna Motor Symposium, the 8-speed auto allows for fuel savings of six percent compared with the company’s already optimized 6-speed automatic transmission. This is achieved by a completely new transmission concept featuring four planetary gear sets and five shift elements. The automatic 8-speed transmission transmits more power in comparison to the previous model, but still gets by with the same installation space and does not require more components. The transmission is also designed for hybridization as either a micro hybrid with a crankshaft starter generator or a full parallel hybrid.  Read More

Roush’s limited edition 600RE

May 2, 2007 Ford’s GT may have finished its production run, but that hasn’t stopped several companies from using the very limited supply of GTs as the basis for something even more exciting. First there was the EDO Ford GT, and now there’s to be a limited run of ten GTs built by Roush, a name that has become synonymous with the Ford GT. Roush’s limited edition 600RE is based on the GT and boasts a number of features including more power and torque and a full styling treatment both inside and out. No details of the power have been given, though given the GT starts with 550 bhp and EDO’s GT comes with 610 horsepower, we figure the 600RE model designation suggests 600 horsies and hence a top speed around 340 km/h. No price has been quoted yet either – that might be harder to guess, and it's a game that cannot be played by those who are feint of chequebook.  Read More

The Ford Shelby GT500 Super Snake

May 1, 2007 Shelby and Ford have joined forces again to produce a mega-muscle car with one simple goal: "to blow the doors off most anything on the planet." They're claiming up to 725 horsepower from the Super Snake, which is over a hundred more ponies than the top-of-the line Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorino, and probably almost enough power for a trip down to the shops. This car, friends, is an absolute bad-ass.  Read More

The Modec on the road

May 1, 2007 In the UK, pioneering zero emission vehicle manufacturer Modec officially opened its Coventry factory doors in March. The company's battery powered Modec vehicle provides the world’s first high performance, emission free alternative to traditional diesel delivery fleets and has been heralded as the future of urban commercial transport. This vehicle could be a great step towards reducing pollution in congested major cities.  Read More

Rhino pitches its RTV to US emergency response services.

April 30, 2007 We've written before about the remarkable rockhopping Rhino RTV and its amazing rough terrain abilities. Now it seems Rhino are teaming up with Arizona Emergency Products, Inc in an effort to sell the vehicles to U.S. based government organizations involved in emergency response - including police, fire and Homeland Security agencies such as the Border Patrol, the Forest Service and the FBI.  Read More

Spring Wednesdays: the new Friday for car crashes?

April 26, 2007 While this isn't directly a story on technical innovation, we thought it was an interesting reflection on how improved measurement of human behaviour can turn up odd and fascinating trends. According to analysis of data from 30,000 automotive accidents in 2006, UK accident management company Accident Exchange has discovered that although Friday is the biggest weekday for crashes throughout the rest of the year, Wednesdays take over in spring.  Read More

Audi Cross Coupe quattro - compact performance SUV concept

April 26, 2007 One of the stars of the Shanghai Motor Show is a new Audi Cross Coupé quattro concept that defines a new segment in the field of crossover vehicles. The Audi Cross Coupé quattro combines the design and dynamism of a compact premium sports car with the spaciousness and versatility of a four-seat sport utility vehicle (SUV). Innovative technical solutions show new ways of achieving efficiency, driving pleasure and comfort, on all roads, under all conditions.  Read More

200 Grand Prix cars for GPLIVE

April 26, 2007 Over 200 Grand Prix cars spanning a century of motor racing are set to grace UK’s Donington Park for the GPlive event on the weekend of May 18, 19 and 20, 2007. The cars will range from Edwardian monsters to the latest Formula One machinery and will include cars driven by over a dozen Formula One World Champions.  Read More

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