Highlights from the 2014 LA Auto Show

Carbon Fiber

A cuben fiber shell and carbon fiber poles make the Sierra Designs Mojo UFO one of the lig...

Part of the new line of ExoFusion fast-and-light tents, the Mojo UFO is truly not of this world. The two-person backpacking tent weighs less than 2 lbs. (0.9 kg), pitches in minutes and costs as much as a vacation for two.  Read More

Five Norwegian engineering students from the University of Life Sciences in Oslo have desi...

Five Norwegian engineering students from the University of Life Sciences in Oslo have come together to design and build an electric motorcycle that's a little different from the rest of the field. Rather than construct the vehicle around a steel or aluminum frame (like the Brutus we covered last year, for instance), the Roskva bike features a carbon fiber monocoque frame that reportedly weighs less than 25 kg (55 pounds). Carbon fiber is also the material of choice for the wheels, single-sided swingarm and enclosed driveshaft.  Read More

Lenovo's ThinkPad X1 Carbon weighs less than three pounds (1.3 kg)

Laptop computers have come a long since the heady days of the early 80’s when carting around a “portable computer” could significantly increase your risk of developing a hernia. Thankfully, laptops these days are much thinner and lighter, making portable computing a much less physically strenuous activity. A perfect case in point is Lenovo’s upcoming ThinkPad X1 Carbon, a 14-inch Ultrabook that tips the scales at less than three pounds (1.3 kg).  Read More

The X-9 Nighthawk is a prototype bicycle with a frame made from aramid/carbon fiber sandwi...

Slovakian mechanical engineer Braňo Mereš has created some pretty nifty one-off bicycle frames over the past several years. Some of his construction materials have included riveted-together strips of titanium, a woven bamboo fiber/epoxy resin composite, and carbon fiber rods. With his latest creation, the X-9 Nighthawk, he has taken yet another approach – the frame is made from sandwich panels that have an aramid core and carbon fiber skins.  Read More

Some of the carbon fiber shapes, created out of polyethylene using Oak Ridge's new techniq...

Thanks to research currently being conducted at the U.S. Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, our unwanted plastic bags may one day be recycled into carbon fiber. Not only that, but the properties of the fibers themselves could be fine-tuned, allowing different types of carbon fiber to be created for specific applications.  Read More

The engine of the DS4R is a 1.6-litre turbo petrol unit producing 256bhp, which calculates...

The DS4 Racing concept from Citroen promises much - a light stytlish 256 bhp turbocharged pocket rocket with a decade of WRC domination behind its design.  Read More

F40s marked the coveted Ferrari's 20th birthday at the Silverstone Classic in 2007

Ferrari F40 fans might wish to put the date July 22 in the calendar now, maybe even if you live somewhere a long way from Silverstone. The annual three-day Silverstone Classic is claimed to be the world's biggest classic motor racing festival. Held at the Silverstone F1 circuit in mid-July, the central focus of the massive festival is the historic racing which features the cream of motor racing drivers and cars from every era of motor sport. Whenever there's a significant automotive anniversary, such as the 50th anniversary of the E-type Jaguar, there's also a mass gathering of vehicles. This year the festival is celebrating the 25th anniversary of the Ferrari F40 - already more than 50 of the original 1315 F40s produced have RSVP'd for the event, guaranteeing a world record.  Read More

Whilst having similar properties to carbon fiber, Tegris won't shatter on impact, is appro...

Spartanburg, South Carolina, is home to one of the largest privately owned chemical and textile research establishments in the world, Milliken & Company. The firm's innovative research that combines textiles and chemistry has now produced a thermoplastic composite called Tegris that is cheap, recyclable and tough. These properties make Tegris an attractive alternative to (or composite partner for) carbon fiber, and it's already proving to have wide ranging applications in the automotive, military and sporting industries.  Read More

A North Sails 3Di in action

Sail technology has come a long way since the days tall ships were carried along by billowing clouds of canvas. In fact, new aerodynamic discoveries coupled with exotic materials have turned modern sails into veritable works of high tech art. Today, sailmakers know that the less a sail distorts (through stretching, shear, compression or shrinkage) the more force or drive remains available to power the boat - especially helpful when you're in a close race for that final buoy. Now, the innovative designers at North Sails have woven an interesting array of tricks into their unique new 3Di line of "canvas" - laminated, heat-molded sails that hold their shape so well, they come close to performing like rigid airfoils.  Read More

Italian high fashion meets veteran bicycle engineering in the very expensive Bianchi by Gu...

When a cycling helmet is priced at nearly US$900, a pair of cycling gloves at over US$300 and a water bottle at US$105, it's a sure thing that the bike that goes with them is going to be really, really expensive. Such is the case with the new Bianchi by Gucci carbon fiber two-wheeler, which sees two Italian veterans come together for the release of this US$14,000 bike. Read on for a rundown of the key specs.  Read More

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