Highlights from the 2014 LA Auto Show

Ford

The world's fastest road car - 1900 rear wheel horsepower and 267 mph after one mile

The emerging sport of One Mile Racing has a new champion – Ray Hofman's 2006 Ford GT runs a twin-turbo motor with a reputed 1900 rear wheel horsepower. A fortnight ago, Hofman piloted his Heffner Performance modified Ford GT over the measured mile with a terminal velocity of 266.9 mph, beating out the other two logical contenders for the title of the world's fastest street car. Just for the record, a Bugatti Veyron exits the standing mile at just over 200 mph. Hofman is now aiming for 280 mph. Is this the world's fastest road car?  Read More

Unveiled at the Beijing Motor Show, there's definitely a certain stripped-back elegance ab...

Ford designers set their sights on creating an endearingly simple vehicle for their latest project, and we'd have to say they've succeeded. Unveiled at the Beijing Motor Show, there's definitely a certain stripped-back elegance about the Start Concept, which along with its sculpted lines and some clever interior customization options, features a new 1.0-liter, three-cylinder addition to the company's EcoBoost petrol engine family that promises a CO2 rating of under 100 g/km.  Read More

Ford and Microsoft have teamed together to deliver Microsoft Hohm to US owners of EVs in o...

A couple of the drawbacks of owning an electric vehicle (EV) will be remembering to recharge it daily and knowing what time of day or night is best to take advantage of the most cost-effective electricity tariff. According to some figures, a household’s energy consumption could double while an EV is charging. To help overcome these conundrums, Ford and Microsoft have joined forces to implement the Microsoft Hohm energy management application for Ford’s EVs, starting with the Focus Electric next year.  Read More

Ford estimates it will save US$1.2 million annually by implementing a new PC Power Managem...

If companies and individuals still need an example of the economic and environmental benefits of switching off electrical equipment when not in use, here it is. Ford estimates it will save US$1.2 million annually on power costs alone and reduce its carbon footprint by an estimated 16,000 to 25,000 metric tons annually by implementing a new PC Power Management program. The new program will centrally control the power settings on Windows laptops and desktop PCs to enable a managed shutdown of computer systems not in use, especially overnight and on weekends.  Read More

Ford Motor Company's new Police Interceptor, due to replace the Crown Victoria currently u...

For the past 18 years, the cop car of choice for North American police forces has been a modified version of the Ford Crown Victoria. And here’s an interesting fact about the Crown Vic: it hasn’t been available to the general public since 2008. Here’s another: it looks like something your grandpa would drive. While police forces like the cars because of their V8 engines, rear-wheel-drive, and easy-to-repair body-on-frame construction, they have become aesthetically and technologically dated. It’s time for a change, so the Ford Motor Company is offering one - last Friday, they revealed a new purpose-built Police Interceptor, which will take over when the Crown Victoria goes out of production in late 2011. The Ford Taurus-based sedan is said to exceed the durability, safety, performance and fuel economy of the Crown Vic.  Read More

Unveiling the Ford Transit Connect Electric van

The Ford Motor Company chose the recent Chicago Auto Show to unveil its long awaited Transit Connect Electric van. The all-electric light duty commercial vehicle is the first in Ford’s accelerated electrified vehicle plan that also includes the Focus Electric in 2011, as well as a plug-in hybrid vehicle and next generation hybrid technology due in 2012.  Read More

The Electronic Key Impressioner is a portable device that can reproduce practically any ca...

The Electronic Key Impressioner (EKI) is a portable device that can reproduce practically any car key. It uses a sensor that goes into the lock and sends information back to a computer via USB about the location of the lock's tumblers - a corresponding computer program searches for the code and a key-cutting machine can use it to grind out a key.  Read More

Ford is using wheat straw - a waste byproduct of wheat - to reinforce plastic in the inter...

Ford is the first automaker to develop and implement environmentally-friendly wheat straw-reinforced plastic in a vehicle. Before you get carried away, the car itself, a Ford Flex, isn’t made of plastic, instead, it’s just the third-row interior storage bins made from the natural fiber-based plastic that contains 20 percent wheat straw bio-filler. Surprisingly though, Ford says this application alone reduces petroleum usage by some 20,000lbs per year, cuts CO2 emissions by 30,000lbs per year, and represents a smart, sustainable usage for wheat straw, the waste byproduct of wheat.  Read More

Ford's new inflatable seatbelts, which are designed to provide additional protection for r...

Most seat belts are designed to stretch during a crash to reduce the force of impact on the wearer while still preventing contact with the interior of the vehicle. Ford has gone one step further with plans to introduce inflatable seat belts designed to reduce the pressure on the chest and help control head and neck motion in rear seat passengers, spreading the crash force across five times more of the occupant’s torso than conventional seat belts.  Read More

The Hybrid X Team from West Philadelphia High School Academy for Automotive and Mechanical...

The Automotive X Prize is a competition aiming to “inspire a new generation of viable, super – efficient vehicles that help break our addiction to oil and stem the effects of climate change”. With a $10 million prize pot and over 100 teams from 12 countries contributing entries, an unlikely contender has emerged in the form of West Philadelphia High School’s Hybrid X Team, which is applying its experience and knowledge to two entries including the Factory Five GT based EVX GT sports car.  Read More

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