Advertisement

Diesel

September 5, 2008 We’d been looking at pictures and static displays of Subaru’s horizontally-opposed diesel engine for several years before seeing it in the Legacy and Outback earlier this year. The engine is exceptionally compact, very light and has a low centre-of-gravity which benefits handling agility and makes best use of the all-wheel drive system. Throw in gobs of torque (the 2.0 litre version produces 258 lb ft at 1,800 rpm), class-leading fuel economy and emissions and the refinement, smoothness and sharp throttle-response it has already displayed and it makes the coming Forester Boxer Diesel which goes on sale in later this month and the Impreza Boxer Diesel (January 2009) very enticing indeed. The Forester will be unveiled in Paris next week. Read More
September 4, 2008 Ten years ago the smart fortwo was launched to a world market decidedly unsure about the highly unusual two-seater that was just two and a half metres in length. It could fit into less than half a parking space, took two people and their luggage quite comfortably and had impressively low fuel consumption and minimum carbon dioxide emissions. The degree of foresight in the design will be judged most kindly by history given the issues of global warming, road congestion, and the effect the laws of supply and demand have had on fuel pricing. Throw in the car’s safety and technical innovations and a design that combines functionality with joie de vivre and the smart fortwo deserves a warm round of applause on its automotive coming of age. Read More
September 4, 2008 Mazda will unveil the next vehicle in its long-term technology development vision, "Sustainable Zoom-Zoom" concept car series at the 2008 Paris International Motor Show next week – the Mazda Kiyora is a lightweight, next generation, urban compact concept car. Kiyora's aerodynamic Nagare design and next-generation four-cylinder direct-injection engine contribute to excellent fuel economy and low CO2 emissions. Read More
September 2, 2008 British manufacturer Trident Performance Vehicles has produced a remarkable set of figures to go with its new Iceni two-seater sports car. It's a diesel sports car and will run any kind of biodiesel without any invalidating the warranty, adjusting the engine or affecting the performance. The car’s 6.6 litre turbo diesel V8 develops 550bhp@3800rpm and an arm-stretching 950lb/ft of torque at just 1800rpm, meaning it can be leisurely potter around short-changing at ballistic speeds. Not only does it get to 60 mph in under four seconds (a serious supercar time), it’ll do 200 mph, deliver 70 mpg at 70 mph, and if you treat the throttle very gently, it’ll deliver 100 mpg. At UKP75,000 it ain’t cheap, but it is special, and very exclusive. Read More
August 24, 2008 Look closely and you'll see a Lotus badge on the side of this fascinating device. Built to act as a scout to plan routes for heavier vehicles on flat, hard-packed ice, the Concept Ice Vehicle (CIV) is set to perform its first tour of duty in Antarctica with the Moon Regan Transarctic Expedition. Three oversize, suspended skis give the ultra-light CIV a low friction contact patch, and handle the steering as the biofuel-powered propeller drives the vehicle forward. Braking is another issue - a large, spiked metal arm is forced down into the smooth ice, dragging the CIV to a halt - and it comes equipped with a radar to detect hidden ice crevasses that could spell trouble for the rest of the team. Read More
Here's one for the dedicated back-yard mechanic. Arizona based Robert Q. Riley Enterprises has now released construction plans based on the completed prototype of its do-it-yourself, two-passenger, XR3 plug-in hybrid, a vehicle that's capable of up to 225 miles per gallon, has a top speed of 80 mph and acceleration comparable to a conventional small car. The USD$200 instructional package for the modular, three-wheeled sportscar includes printed drawings, electronic 3D virtual models, computer files that enable vendors to make parts plus a DVD that outlines the building of the car. Read More
One of the biggest debuts at the 2008 British International Motor Show - and certainly the most floorspace - was claimed by the Opel Insignia, a new mid-size sedan that will offer seven different engine configurations and a number of technical innovations when it hits the showroom floor in Germany late this year and other markets from January 2009. The technology packed Insignia includes a new Eye camera system that reads speed and no-passing signs and displays them on the instrument panel, coupled with a Lane Departure Warning system that provides an extra level of awareness to the driver. Read More
April 8, 2008 Volvo has announced that Swedish refuse collection firms Renova and Ragn-Sells will begin regular daily testing of two of the company's hybrid refuse trucks ahead of a market launch in 2009. Using a 7 liter diesel engine and an electric motor that utilizes regenerative braking, the trucks are capable of delivery fuel (and therefore emissions) savings of 20 percent. Read More
January 27, 2008 Suzuki will present both the Kizashi and Kizashi 2 Concept cars together for the first time at the upcoming Geneva International Motor Show. Unveiled separately at the 2007 International Motor Show (IAA) in Frankfurt and 2007 Tokyo Motor Show respectively, the Concepts showcase the company's intention to build on its automotive presence already established in the compact car (Swift) and sport utility vehicle (Grand Vitara) segments by entering into the sedan market. The Kizashi - a Japanese word meaning “prelude” or “foretaste” - will feature a 2.0L 4-valve turbo diesel engine coupled with an intelligent all-wheel drive system targeting low CO2 emissions in a lean, muscular design that aims to optimize interior spaciousness and apply the no-nonsense, user-oriented approach to driver functionality gleaned from Suzuki's experience in motorcycle production. Read More
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! Read More
Advertisement