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Archive for June 17th, 2017

Tech Brands and Ride Sharing Could Worsen New-Car Sales Hangover

Saturday, June 17th, 2017

Salesman holding out automobile pivotal in automobile showroom

Salesman holding out automobile pivotal in automobile showroom

Automakers saw bang times for new-car sales in 2015 and 2016, and a idea that what goes adult contingency come down (or plateau, if you’re being generous), has seemed to take reason in 2017. Car buyers are, after all, a calculable resource. People don’t need to buy new vehicles regularly, and information shows people are unresolved on to their cars and trucks longer. Rising record usually compounds this increasingly oppressive existence for automakers, as underscored in a new news by a consulting organisation Capgemini.

For automakers, a initial bit of bad news is that people seem utterly receptive to shopping a automobile from a tech code such as Apple or Google, according to Capgemini’s 17th Cars Online report, that surveyed some 8000 consumers in 8 countries. This seductiveness is notwithstanding a “lack of substance,” pronounced Matthew Desmond, North American automotive marketplace lead during Capgemini, definition that tech brands do not nonetheless have their possess vehicles prepared for sale. The firm’s consult though found that consumer seductiveness in shopping cars from tech brands has grown from 49 percent in a 2015 investigate to 57 percent in the latest report. Whether consumers indeed would buy a tech companies’ vehicles is another matter, Desmond noted. But they’re increasingly open to it.

Brand faithfulness is not a usually thing for a determined OEMs to worry about. There is also a growing popularity of ride-sharing services offering by a likes of Uber and Lyft. Fewer people will feel a need to have their possess automobile if it’s easy and inexpensive to sequence adult a cab on their smartphones. Capgemini’s consult found that 34 percent of automobile buyers see float pity and associated services as a genuine choice to owning a vehicle. However, some-more than half of a respondents pronounced they see ride-hailing services as interrelated to shopping a new car.

German Court Bans Uber Service Nationwide

German Court Bans Uber Service Nationwide

But of course, where there is change, event also can be found. Capgemini’s consult found that two-thirds of consumers see automobile brands as an critical cause in final that ride-sharing use to use. That means that brand-centric programs could be an critical cause in destiny new-car sales. Ventures such as General Motors’ Maven and Book by Cadillac are examples of ways automakers can use common mobility as a approach to get people to try out their products, Desmond said. Luxury automakers such as Mercedes-Benz and BMW offer identical services.

Regardless, a change in common mobility is usually approaching to continue, underscored rather by Ford elevating Jim Hackett, a conduct of a Ford Smart Mobility unit, to a CEO mark on May 22. “There are going to be [auto] companies experimenting in a marketplace, resolutely going where they haven’t left before,” Desmond said.

One Million Miles Strong - Maven Launches In Chicago

One Million Miles Strong - Maven Launches In Chicago

The sales intrusion has a intensity to go over a OEMs and widespread to their franchise-dealer networks as well. Capgemini’s consult showed that roughly half of consumers would cruise buying a automobile online. The pivotal here, for automakers and their dealers, is to welcome and confederate some of a disruptive technologies into a marketplace, according to Capgemini’s report. Some automakers, such as Jaguar Land Rover, have already been toying with integrating practical existence into showrooms. That’s good, since Capgemini’s consult showed 62 percent of consumers wish practical existence to be partial of a car-buying experience.

However automakers select to adjust to disruption, adjust they must, as a golden age of automobile sales can't final forever. “Car brands are realizing they need to conflict to changing consumer habits to means growth,” Kai Grambow, tellurian conduct of automotive during Capgemini, remarkable in a report. “Becoming leaders in automobile pity and a broader mobility space will not only emanate new income streams for automobile manufacturers, though will also concede brands to lift recognition and settle a new kind of attribute with consumers as they confirm on their subsequent indication to purchase.”

Virtual Reality Arrives for Mario Kart Arcade GP Drivers in Japan

Saturday, June 17th, 2017

mario-kart-vr

mario-kart-vr

A groundbreaking new chronicle of Mario Kart Arcade GP that incorporates a full-sized simulator and practical existence (VR) record lets gamers expostulate as Mario, Peach, Bowser, or whichever other Nintendo impression they prefer. Well, during slightest those who live in or revisit Japan can do so.

The simple game, Mario Kart Arcade GP, has been out for some-more than a decade, though this new iteration will move it adult to date and into a VR destiny of gaming. Bandai Namco Entertainment is opening a new trickery called VR Zone in Shinjuku, Tokyo on Jul 14 that will underline countless practical existence games, including Mario Kart. The practical existence space will be a initial of a kind, as all of a required apparatus and tech support is provided.

mario-kart-virtual-reality

mario-kart-virtual-reality

The equipment is formed around HTC Vive hardware. The first-person Mario Kart diversion not usually uses kart-like arcade simulator seats with pedals and wheels, though also VR conduct gear, headphones, and wearable sensors. Unlike other Vive systems that use wands for hand-controlled motions, Mario Kart Arcade GP VR uses watch-like controllers that tag to your wrist. Giving a actor a ability to physically chuck equipment within a digital universe unequivocally elevates this to a next-generation gaming experience.

mario-kart-vr-view

mario-kart-vr-view

Because this is not an central Nintendo release, there are few details about a tangible game–it substantially hasn’t altered most from a informed Mario Kart Arcade, aside from adding a VR knowledge to put we right in a diversion space rather than examination it on a screen. Other titles during a roughly 38,000-square-foot playland embody Evangelion, Dragon Ball, Ghost in a Shell, and Gundam.

This is a initial time in over dual decades that a Nintendo diversion has incorporated practical reality, though it’s not simply accessible. The knowledge is usually accessible during this one specific location, and deliberation it’s formed on an aged game, it’s tough to suppose it’ll be something that becomes a tellurian mainstream experience.

vr-zone

vr-zone

However, if it does well, it’s not tough to suppose something identical eventually coming to a United States. Using Nintendo’s new Switch gaming system, with a dual removable controllers, as a practical existence apparatus seems like an opportunity, though it’s not likely. So, for now, check out a footage next and go behind to summoning lightning on your N64.

2017 Mazda CX-9 Earns IIHS Top Safety Pick+ Award

Saturday, June 17th, 2017

The 2017 Mazda CX-9 is now one of a safest vehicles we can buy.

Redesigned for a 2016 indication year, a IIHS Top Safety Pick+ endowment usually relates to vehicles built after Nov 2016. The reserve group pronounced Mazda mutated a deployment settlement of a side screen airbags to urge insurance in front and side crashes, improving a formula of a crashworthiness tests. The midsize SUV warranted good ratings on all crashworthiness tests, has a superior-rated front pile-up impediment system, and acceptable-rated headlights.

SEE ALSO: 2017 Mazda CX-9 Adds New Standard Features Without Increasing Price

IIHS did note that before a stream model, a many new CX-9 to be rated was a 2015 model. Then, a car perceived bad ratings for insurance in tiny overlie front crashes, as a structure was severely compromised and a side airbag didn’t deploy. The progressing indication also did feeble on a roof strength exam and for conduct restraints. In those tests, it usually earned marginal ratings.

In IIHS lane tests during 12 mph and 25 mph, a Mazda CX-9’s discretionary front pile-up impediment complement helped a car equivocate collisions. The complement includes Forward Collision Warning that meets National Highway Traffic Safety Administration standards. The superior-rated pile-up impediment complement comes on a CX-9’s Grand Touring and Signature trims, that are also versed with a CX-9’s best accessible headlights that are rated acceptable. Other trim levels come with marginal-rated headlights.

Discuss this story on the Mazda Forum

Oreca 07 LMP2

Saturday, June 17th, 2017

Exterior

Given a preceding 05 indication was Oreca’s initial closed-cockpit racer, it creates clarity that one of a 07’s primary areas of thoroughness was to urge a aerodynamics. Adding a roof changes utterly a bit to a approach atmosphere flows over a car, and during a lane like a Circuit de La Sarthe, removing a right change between downforce and drag is vicious to success.

As such, Oreca says it managed to supplement additional hold while concurrently augmenting aero efficiency. The whole package is 100 percent functional, with 0 care paid to aesthetics – only as it should be on a winning competition car. Oreca used a in-house aero experts and a apartment of CFD (computational liquid dynamics) collection to get it only right, with a final bodywork assembled regulating carbon-kevlar with light lamination baked in Oreca’s autoclave.

And nonetheless a 07 is really many a possess model, a 05 still supposing only a right skeleton for success. “For [the 05 prototype] we took into care many of what we knew of a 2017 technical manners during a time,” says David Floury, Oreca’s Technical Director. “That’s because a Oreca 05 was recognised with a breadth of 1,900 mm, instead of a 2,000 mm available by a stream rules. This choice did impact a car’s performance, quite on circuitous racetracks, though still was a good preference deliberation a altogether range of a project.”

Interior

Crawl inside a cockpit of this monster, and it’s all business. Drivers are strapped into what fundamentally amounts to a CO fiber cocoon, with really singular space to pierce around. A singular CO fiber bucket is mounted off center, with a motorist placed somewhat to a left of a center line. The steering circle is a rectilinear event and also done from CO fiber, with a outrageous volume of buttons and knobs widespread opposite a surface, including adjustments for a aero and traction control, as good as buttons for a radio, windshield wiper, array control, and engine close off. The circle also houses a tiny LCD shade to send vicious info, such as coolant temperature, oil pressure, and a stream comparison gear. Above a shade sits a array of lights providing a suitable change points.

Immediately to a right of a circle is a delegate symbol row with even some-more buttons. The seating position is intensely low, and prominence is singular during best, with brazen prominence hampered even serve due to a straight windshield wiper and several receiver arrays. A rectilinear opening on a lurch keeps cockpit atmosphere dissemination going during extended stints.

In terms of safety, drivers are hold in place by a six-point racing harness, and a claim HANS reserve device. Finally, a rubber fuel tank is mounted in an reasonably stable plcae to keep a explodey extract safely contained should there be an occurrence with something reduction mobile than a car.

Drivetrain

The preceding Oreca 05 LMP2 indication assembled roughly 490 horsepower, with a accumulation of opposite engine choices offering to competitors. One of a some-more renouned choices enclosed a Nissan-derived VK45DE, a naturally aspirated 4.5-liter V-8. This year, a Oreca 07 gets a rather large energy boost adult to 603 horsepower, that is a large 113-horse boost over a preceding 05 lump.

All that additional oomph is supposing by a standard-spec naturally aspirated V-8 from U.K.-based engine manufacturer Gibson Technology, a same association that assembled a successful VK45 powerplant from yesteryear. Gibson was sealed in as a engine provider for a LMP2 category until 2020, with all competitors regulating a same pile going brazen compartment that date.

Designated as a Gibson GK-428, a new engine spec includes 4.2 liters of banishment and 8 cylinders organised in a 90-degree bank configuration. Redline is set during a dizzying 9,000 rpm. Standout facilities embody a dry sump / staged oil siphon complement for lubrication, while Cosworth is employed for a electronic engine control unit.

Sending a energy to a back spindle is a six-speed consecutive gearbox (plus one retreat gear) from Xtrac, a same set-up that was used on a Oreca 05. Drivers barter cogs around steering wheel-mounted change paddles and a pneumatic change system.

Chassis And Suspension

In box it wasn’t already obvious, Oreca manufactures a possess framework in-house. That done a transition between a 05 and 07 a comparatively candid routine overall, notwithstanding a outrageous mandate of growth for a new manners spec.

“The Oreca 07 was recognised around a Oreca 05’s monocoque and shares a certain series of a 05’s automatic components,” says Floury. “The ideas was to build on a success and a peculiarity of a Oreca 05 while building performance. Our judgment was to pattern a totally new automobile around a bottom of existent components so permitting a teams who possess an Oreca 05 to refurbish it to a 07, though perplexing to control a cost of conversion.”

As such, a 07 uses many of a comparison 05’s monocoque chassis, assembled regulating CO fiber and honeycomb modules for higher acerbity and weight savings. Speaking of weight, it should come as no warn that Oreca went to good lengths to keep mass to a minimum, with a final reckoning looking like 930 kg (2,050 pounds) per a new LMP2 regulations. It should also be remarkable that series is 30 kg (roughly 66 pounds) more than a 05 model, once again, per regulations.

Managing a mass is a double-wishbone cessation set-up with pushrod-style dampers. PKM Consulting was tapped to yield a tractable shocks. Making it hold are sticking racing slicks measuring in during 30-68/R18 in front and 31-71/R18 in a rear. The wheels are ultra-light units measuring in during 12.5 inches in breadth and 18 inches in hole for a front, while a rears are wider during 13 inches opposite and 18 inches in diameter. Finally, a brakes use ventilated CO discs and 6-pot monobloc calipers.

Conclusion

While this year’s large competition in France has nonetheless to be etched into a story books, a Oreca 07 has already amassed an considerable record of achievements for a 2017 competition season, including tip performances during a 4 Hours of Monza (G-Drive Racing, Rojas/Hirakawa/Roussel), 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps (G-Drive Racing, Rusinov/Thiriet/Lynn), and 6 Hours of Silverstone (Jackie Chan DC Racing, Tung/Jarvis/Laurent). Further accomplishments embody stick positions during a 12 Hours of Sebring (Rebellion Racing), 4 Hours of Silverstone ELMS (DragonSpeed), 6 Hours of Silverstone, 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps FIA WEC (G-Drive Racing), and 4 Hours of Monza (Graff Racing).

For now, Oreca looks like it’s moulding adult to be a widespread force during Le Mans in LMP2. Tune in subsequent week to see where it lands when a mottled flies.

    • No splash holders or Apple CarPlay support

Oil (Won’t) Be Back: Audi Confirms Diesel Is Dead for a U.S.

Saturday, June 17th, 2017

2014-audi-a7-tdi-s-line-engine-badge-photo-534822-s-986x603

2014-audi-a7-tdi-s-line-engine-badge-photo-534822-s-986x603

Long-serving Volkswagen Group executives recoil when they hear a word Dieselgate. As they should; a liaison has cost a association millions in buyback compensation and an as nonetheless unquantified volume in repairs to a reputation. But nonetheless a association stays committed to diesel record in Europe, we now have acknowledgment from a comparison source that there is clearly no possibility of Volkswagen, Audi, or Porsche diesels ever entrance behind to a United States, no matter how purify they are.

We spoke to Peter Mertens, Audi’s new growth boss, during final weekend’s Formula E competition in Berlin and asked him either a relaunch in a U.S. marketplace would be deliberate for a ultraclean next-generation diesel engines that a organisation is developing.

“Now you’re putting me in a corner,” he said. “I would contend no, and because is that so? we do not trust that Americans in their loyal faith and heart, their informative approach of driving, are matched to diesel. They aren’t. Everybody tried—we Europeans attempted to give an answer maybe to a doubt that wasn’t asked.”

We’ll leave aside a correctness of some of a answers Volkswagen gave to a EPA’s questions. It’s value observant that Mertens’s prior practice with Volvo, Jaguar Land Rover, General Motors, and Mercedes-Benz before fasten Audi in May means he has no tie with any of a Dieselgate decisions.

The liaison is still distracted in Europe, too. “Diesel can be purify with technology, though a problem is a image,” Mertens said. “People consider that diesel is bad. It’s not assisting us and it’s not assisting a environment, vocalization frankly. It would be good if we could come behind to technical terms and realities instead of choice contribution when it comes to diesel, though it’s really formidable to quarrel them.”

With diesel struggling to transparent a existence in Europe, there’s no ardour to try to relaunch it over here. So, over the cleaned-up 2015 TDI register that is now being sole off, it seems transparent that no some-more VW Group diesels will be creation a outing opposite a Atlantic.

The Bigger 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan Costs $385 More Than a Old One

Saturday, June 17th, 2017

2018 Volkswagen Tiguan2018 Volkswagen Tiguan

The new, significantly bigger Volkswagen Tiguan is a lot some-more automobile than a predecessor, though it won’t cost a lot some-more money. The 2018 Tiguan, that is some-more than 10 inches longer than before and now offers a third quarrel of seats, costs only $385 some-more than did a 2017 model, with a bottom cost of $26,245 for a entry-level S trim.

All 2018 Tiguans are powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine with 184 horsepower and 221 lb-ft of torque, corresponding to an eight-speed involuntary transmission. All-wheel drive, or 4MOTION in VW-speak, adds $1300 to any of a 4 trim levels.

The bottom cost is for a front-wheel-drive Tiguan S, that comes customary with a backup camera, a 6.5-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and a three-row, seven-seat layout. The Tiguan SE starts during $29,980 and adds facilities such as an 8.0-inch touchscreen, pushbutton start, dual-zone involuntary meridian control, leatherette upholstery, and several active reserve features.

2018 Volkswagen Tiguan2018 Volkswagen Tiguan

Step adult to a $33,450 Tiguan SEL and we get 18-inch wheels, a energy liftgate, remote starting, a breathtaking sunroof, and adaptive journey control. The entirely installed SEL Premium, starting during $37,150, sits during a tip of a operation with a 19-inch wheels, LED headlights, rain-sensing wipers, exhilarated steering wheel, Fender audio system, digital sign cluster, and leather seats.

Curiously, the third quarrel of seats is not customary with AWD, instead costing $500 extra. Other options embody an $850 Driver Assistance package for S models; a $1200 breathtaking sunroof for SE trims; and a sporty-looking R-Line coming package that costs $1795 for a SEL and $1495 for a SEL Premium.

2018 Volkswagen Tiguan2018 Volkswagen Tiguan

Up during a tippy-top of a Tiguan range, a value tender looks more questionable, as a Tiguan SEL Premium 4MOTION with a R-Line package and a third quarrel chair rings in at more than $40,000—quite a sum for a compress crossover.

Luckily for some-more budget-minded VW crossover-intenders, a aged Tiguan will hang around for a small while longer as a Tiguan Limited. It will presumably slot in below the bottom 2018 Tiguan, nonetheless pricing hasn’t been announced yet. Soon enough, a choice will be yours, as a new Tiguan is scheduled to go on sale within a subsequent few months.

2018-Volkswagen-Tiguan-REEL2018-Volkswagen-Tiguan-REEL

How 24 Hours of Le Mans is Different for Porsche Without Audi

Saturday, June 17th, 2017

In an epoch where a fandom has depressed off drastically, motorsport has benefited severely from a conflict during Le Mans between sister brands Porsche and Audi.

There’s small adore mislaid between a dual Volkswagen Group sub-brands during a best of times, and a famed 24-hour competition by a French panorama is where both have been speedy to let it show. For 3 uninterrupted years, a kin adversary was a form of strife that could bother a seductiveness of even a many unexcited observer, a dual duking it out in a many exhausting exam of tellurian and automatic endurance.

Alas, this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans has some gloomy undertones. For a initial time 18 years, Audi isn’t holding part, a group that’s won a competition 13 times given 2000 descending plant to a Dieselgate liaison that’s tormented a primogenitor company.

ALSO SEE: Follow Along as We Try to Stay Awake for All 24 Hours of Le Mans

“No question, we desired carrying a healthy adversary with Audi,” former Porsche LMP1 motorist and stream code envoy Mark Webber said, reminiscing about a 2015 using of a competition around Circuite de la Sarthe in that his automobile placed second forward of a span of entries from Audi Sport.

Out of a Ashes

As a final heirloom of a Volkswagen Group during Le Mans, Porsche is good represented during this, a 85th using of a race. A span of absolute variety are competing nonetheless again in a top-flight LMP1 class, a bridgehead where Porsche and Audi fought alongside — yet maybe some-more importantly opposite — one another, while dual 911s run in a GTE Pro class. The automaker also reserve a span of a same 911 RSRs to a group co-owned by actor Patrick Dempsey.

2017-porsche-919-hybrid-le-mans

Of course, those Porsche 919 Hybrids will be confronting a high charge if possibly of them wants to land on a podium. Not usually are they outnumbered — Toyota has brought 3 cars out to this year’s competition — though they’re outdated, too. The 919 dates behind to 2014, while a Toyota TS050 Hybrid it’s adult opposite usually debuted final year.

Without sister code Audi to go head-to-head with, Porsche is faced with a Toyota group equally well-equipped to take home tip honors during a ultimate sports automobile continuation race. However, this is a code that’s won a final dual runnings of a 24 Hours of Le Mans, and there’s no reason it won’t supplement third before a weekend’s through.

“We’re not bashful by observant we wish to go for a shawl trick,” Webber said. “We have won a competition as favorites before; we would contend this year we’re a small bit of an underdog, so we have to try to win it like that as well.”

Yet there will still be something blank when a cars take their positions on a starting grid on Saturday; a something that is as discernible as it is unthinkable.

“The Audi guys did an glorious pursuit over many, many years of experience,” pronounced Porsche Motorsport boss, Dr. Frank-Steffen Walliser. “It’s a bit of a pity, though we all know a resources surrounding it. We did not ask for this.”

GM Adds 130 Autonomous Chevrolet Bolt EVs, Creating a Industry’s Largest Self-Driving Fleet . . . for Now

Saturday, June 17th, 2017

Chevrolet Bolt EV unconstrained exam vehicles are fabricated during General Motors Orion Assembly in Orion Township, Michigan. (Photo by Jeffrey Sauger for General Motors)

Chevrolet Bolt EV unconstrained exam vehicles are fabricated during General Motors Orion Assembly in Orion Township, Michigan. (Photo by Jeffrey Sauger for General Motors)

General Motors will some-more than triple a series of self-driving vehicles it has handling on open roads within a matter of weeks, giving a engineers one of a largest unconstrained exam fleets of any association building a fledgling technology.

Executives pronounced this week that they have finished prolongation of 130 unconstrained electric Chevrolet Bolt EV cars during an open plant in Orion Township, Michigan, a process that began in January. They’re a initial programmed cars to be wholly constructed on an open line in a traditional factory.

Destined for use in commander projects already underway in San Francisco, Arizona, and Michigan, a Bolts will join GM’s strange 50 unconstrained vehicles to emanate a swift of 180, a distance that should assistance a company’s efforts to ramp adult contrast and information gathering.

“To grasp what we wish from self-driving cars, we contingency muster them during scale,” pronounced Kyle Vogt, arch executive officer of Cruise Automation, a self-driving-software association that GM bought for $1 billion in 2016.

At slightest for now, a liquid means General Motors operates one of a largest unconstrained fleets in a world. Waymo, a association culled from Google’s self-driving-car project, combined 100 Chrysler Pacifica hybrid minivans to a swift that numbered “nearly 60” in December. The active series of cars in Waymo’s swift is evolving, as a association phases out a Firefly prototypes and brings aboard 500 some-more unconstrained Pacificas. Production on those vehicles began in May.

 

GM Produces Self-Driving Chevy Bolt EV Test Vehicles

GM Produces Self-Driving Chevy Bolt EV Test Vehicles

Ford now has 30 unconstrained vehicles active on open roads, with skeleton to boost a swift to 90 by a finish of 2017. Portions of a designed $700 million investment in a Flat Rock Assembly Plant south of Detroit embody supports for outfitting a open lines for prolongation of Level 4 unconstrained vehicles.

Some of GM’s new Bolts are still during a Orion Township factory, and it’s misleading accurately when they’ll be delivered to their new contrast environments. Whenever they arrive, GM intends to use them to ready for a destiny when a business accost vehicles around ride-sharing apps as most as they buy them during a dealership.

Chevrolet Bolt EV unconstrained exam vehicles are fabricated during General Motors Orion Assembly in Orion Township, Michigan. (Photo by Jeffrey Sauger for General Motors)

Chevrolet Bolt EV unconstrained exam vehicles are fabricated during General Motors Orion Assembly in Orion Township, Michigan. (Photo by Jeffrey Sauger for General Motors)

“Going forward, we will initial deliver a unconstrained record to business in ride-sharing fleets in vital U.S. cities,” GM CEO Mary Barra told bureau workers on Tuesday, adding importance to a company’s formerly reported intentions. “We trust this has a intensity to significantly revoke a cost per mile of ride-sharing services and unequivocally pierce us over a tipping indicate where travel as a use becomes a really critical business for us.”

Unlike Waymo, that is timid a prototypes, a GM orator pronounced Wednesday that a association intends to use a strange 50 unconstrained vehicles in contrast for “the foreseeable future.”

Those strange cars embody specifically given 2017 Chevrolet Bolts and mixed Nissan Leafs. The new, second-generation unconstrained vehicles are built for a solitary purpose of unconstrained operations. They have a revamped smoke-stack of some-more than 40 sensors designed to detect a highway environment, including lidar, radar, and cameras.

Whether operated by General Motors, Waymo, Ford, or large others, a flourishing series of exam vehicles will assistance to answer a visit doubt of when unconstrained cars will arrive on a nation’s roads. Increasingly, they’re already here.

Ford F-150 Raptor 40,000-Mile Test Intro: The Beast Begins Its Stay

Saturday, June 17th, 2017

When it comes to traversing Michigan potholes, there are dual strategies. Most folks occupy a balanced-human approach: Plod by a minefield carefully, holding it easy in hopes zero gets bent. The second tactic requires more, well, let’s call it commitment. Every automobile has a protected speed during that it will fly right over a craters, spasmodic skimming their edges though never dropping a circle distant adequate subsequent a aspect to do damage. It’s a automotive homogeneous of a supercross racer in a whoops. When ideally executed, both are effective means to get home. Strategy dual comes with a prerogative of stealing there earlier and a risk of, say, stealing an spindle from a vehicle.

Until now, this was an tangible dilemma.

Our long-term Ford F-150 Raptor SuperCrew, then, is a $64,800, 450-hp quandary killer. That it tears a commercial-truck-sized hole in a atmosphere while completing a 14.2-second quarter-mile during 97 mph and hits 60 mph in usually 5.5 seconds, well, those things are usually gravy.

So, we see, owning a Raptor in Michigan is simply pragmatic. Here, a highway shoulders are a funeral belligerent for long-dead Caprices, Plymouths, Silverados, and, yes, F-150s that couldn’t penetrate a wet, frozen misery. What improved approach to applaud potholes, ice heaves, and shweckled wheels than to welcome them with a lorry unburdened by such concerns? We couldn’t consider of one, so we systematic a Raptor to exam for 40,000 miles.

Impulsiveness

Fortunately, each Raptor comes with a same extravagantly able hardware: a twin-turbo 3.5-liter V-6, a 10-speed involuntary transmission, BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A KO2 tires, Fox dampers, and a gusto for inducing bad incentive control.

And what would a tributary lorry be though a tributary options list? Ours is installed with $11,660 in add-ons, starting with a $9345 Equipment Group 802A, that reserve a Torsen limited-slip front differential (a locking back diff is standard), 360-degree cameras, remote start, dual-zone involuntary meridian control, Sync 3 infotainment, a trailer-brake controller and backup assist, and more. We afterwards piled on these à la grant additions: 17-inch forged-aluminum wheels, a exhilarated steering wheel, second-row exhilarated seats, a tailgate step, and a spray-in bedliner. And, of course, ours is dim gray—Magnetic, in Ford-speak—with black wheels.

Outrageous Utility

Just for sport, we’ve begun backing adult Michigan’s ever-sprouting potholes and smoothing them to cream with a Raptor’s ever-buttery bypass dampers. Emboldened by a supernatural amounts of circle travel—13.0 inches in front and 13.9 during a rear—we’ve taken to charging by some-more than highway imperfections, however. Periodically, we run by a internal off-road park—sideways, of course—just to send a locals into a tailspin as a Raptor chews by mud mounds and rooster tails each silt wash, spewing an constant tide of Michigan alfisols from all 4 tires. Did we discuss a 510 lb-ft of torque?

It flies—and lands, even—with almost some-more intrepidity than any three-ton wingless automobile should. It is also, by a far-reaching margin, a many renouned automobile in a long-term fleet. And that’s a swift that now includes a Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport, a Ford Shelby GT350, and a Porsche 718 Boxster S. Drawing weekend reservations months in advance, a large Ford is in as most direct as a $40 per night VRBO on Monaco’s Mirabeau corner.

It’s a appurtenance that ideally aligns your wants: “I competence be middle-aged, though we still indulge a occasional airborne tyrannise crossing,” with your needs: “I have dual dorky kids and a ton of crap to transport around.” On and on, it is a essence of outrageous—massive, coarse, rapid, and able of eating curbs during turnpike speeds. It is to refinement what Charlie Sheen is to decorum. Yet, as an bland vehicle, it’s also underline rich, stunningly comfortable, and remarkably easy to live with. The large goofball is ideally happy to journey a expressway in quiet, frost-heave pooh-poohing ease.

Big, Bad, Bold

Its corpulence doesn’t forestall it from being easy on a eyes. More than 6 inches wider than a customary F-150 and beefed adult with flared fenders front and rear, a thing is a renowned giant. It’s also diligent with styling that reveals a goods, like holes in a front fender to uncover off a brawny cessation pieces and a 3.0-inch-diameter dampers that assistance it mount unapproachable of Michigan’s large volumes of impersonal pickups.

But underneath all a desert-hammering skin, there’s still a real, serviceable four-door pickup able of towing an 8000-pound trailer, hauling 1200 pounds in a bed, and holding those dorks to school. This duality is what creates a Raptor so appealing. We’re looking brazen to a subsequent 35,000 miles. (Bonus: The odometer doesn’t magnitude stretch trafficked off a ground.)

Thus far, about 5000 miles in, we’ve detected usually 3 faults: Ten is too many gears. It’s too far-reaching for during slightest one internal automobile wash. At full throttle, it honks like a Pontiac Sunbird in a Holland Tunnel.

But, good Lord, zero has ever cared reduction about potholes.

Months in Fleet: 2 months Current Mileage: 5113 miles
Average Fuel Economy: 14 mpg Fuel Tank Size: 36.0 gal Fuel Range: 500 miles
Service: $0 Normal Wear: $0 Repair: $0

Watch a 2017 24 Hours of Le Mans Live Streaming

Saturday, June 17th, 2017

Toyota is looking to redeem itself after final year’s debacle.

Each year, a 24 Hours of Le Mans offers some of a many heated and sparkling movement motorsports have to offer, and this year should be no different. Already, a Toyota TS050 Hybrid has set a new record path time during Circuit de la Sarthe, branch in a time of 3:14.791 with motorist Kamui Kobayashi behind a wheel. Porsche will keep things engaging with a 919 Hybrid competition car, as it looks to urge final year’s victory.

SEE ALSO: Toyota Sets New Lap Record During Qualifying during Le Mans

The competition will be lonesome on Fox Sports 1 and Fox Sports 2 in a U.S., though if we wish to locate all a movement in a entirety, than Fox Sports GO is your best bet. The whole competition will be available on Fox Sports GO. This year’s competition will start during 6:00 AM Pacific / 9:00 AM Eastern on Jun 17, and coverage will be accessible on Fox Sports 1 from 5:30 AM Pacific / 8:30 AM Eastern to 7:00 AM Pacific / 10:00 AM Eastern. Fox Sports 2 will take over from 10:00 AM Pacific / 1:00 PM Eastern to 10:00 PM Pacific / 1:00 AM Eastern. From there, Fox Sports 1 will have coverage from 10:00 PM Pacific / 1:00 AM Eastern to 6:30 AM Pacific / 9:30 AM Eastern.

You can also balance into RadioLeMans for coverage of a competition once it starts during 6:00 AM Pacific / 9:00 AM Eastern. There will also be broadcasts on XM channel 201 and Sirius channel 138 for those with satellite radio access.

You can also follow along as AutoGuide.com‘s possess Dan Ilika tries his best to stay divided during a whole 24-hour race.