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The Latest News And Reviews
Throughout The Car Industry

Categories: Technology

Rear Wheel Drive Is Coming Back!

On: Mon, Oct 10, 2011 at 12:21PM | By: Peter C Sessler

Rear Wheel Drive Is Coming Back! test 2

The big three American car makers (Chrysler, GM, and Ford) are slowly bringing back rear-wheel drive cars, especially Chrysler. Does this mean that they are giving up front-wheel drive? Not at all, but they are finally acknowledging that rear-wheel is in many respects superior to front-wheel drive. Actually, rear-wheel drive never really went away as pick-up trucks and most SUVs are rear-wheel drive (RWD) vehicles.

GM And BMW To Partner On Green Tech

On: Fri, Oct 7, 2011 at 4:41PM | By: Chris Weiss

GM And BMW To Partner On Green Tech test 2

Green technology is a multifaceted challenge facing automakers today. With governments tightening emissions restrictions, automakers must find a way to make cleaner cars. But with green technologies like batteries and hybrid systems expensive to develop and not necessarily all that fast to catch on in the market, green technology R&D is a major investment that won't necessarily pay off for years.

One of the strategies many automakers are using in cleaning their fleets in a cost-effective manner is teaming up with other automakers and pooling research dollars. The latest partners are GM and BMW.

Poop Powered Bike, Never Leave The Throne Again

On: Fri, Oct 7, 2011 at 2:30PM | By: Chris Salamone

TOTO Neo test 2

As Japanese toilets become increasingly bacteria free, efficient, and aesthetically pleasing, one toilet manufacturer seeks to produce the ultimate human waste receptacle. TOTO, Japan’s largest toilet maker, aims to halve their CO2 emissions in bathrooms by 2017. In support of that, the company issued the TOTO Green Challenge which features a 600-mile cross-country tour via a toilet-powered motorcycle nicknamed Neo. By toilet-powered, we mean BioGas. And by BioGas, we mean feces.

Neo is a motorcycle powered completely by human excrement. The vehicle finds fuel in noxious fumes converted from the driver’s recently deployed bombs—giving new meaning to our previous notions of bathroom availability. Indeed, provided the driver has absolutely no shame, she can literally go whenever and wherever she wants. In this case, our hypothetical driver is female simply because TOTO chose a female to drive their waste harvester across Japan! Let’s hope that jumpsuit has a rear hatch.

Hyundai Working On 10-Speed Transmission

On: Wed, Oct 5, 2011 at 9:15AM | By: Chris Weiss

Hyundai Working On 10-Speed Transmission test 2

Hyundai just does not want to leave the pages of auto publications lately. The Korean automaker is reportedly working on improving its high-end offerings with a 10-speed automatic transmission. The gearbox, which adds an extra two gears over the eight-speed equipped to the 2012 Genesis and 2012 Equus, is being developed for future high-end models.


More Tickets In The Mail? U.K. Looking At Tire Cameras

On: Tue, Oct 4, 2011 at 11:30AM | By: Chris Weiss

More Tickets In The Mail? U.K. Looking At Tire Cameras test 2

A couple weeks ago, I opened up my mailbox to find a nice, little ticket from the NJ Turnpike Authority. You see, I had been driving with an EZ-Pass automatic pay scanner, but apparently the scanner didn't work on this particular toll both. Unfortunately, the license plate camera did, and I was stuck opening a stupid traffic ticket.

Frankly, I could live without the surprise tickets created by Big Brother-like technology spying on our vehicles. But it's a growing reality. In the U.K., such sensors may not apply just to missed tolls and red lights; they may be able to check your tires for illegally low tread patterns.

CVT Transmissions

On: Fri, Sep 30, 2011 at 1:11PM | By: Peter C Sessler

CVT Transmissions test 2

The carmakers are always concerned with gas mileage, considering how America is infatuated with pickup trucks and —which aren’t known for getting good gas mileage. Still, the carmakers have federal gas mileage standards to meet and they aren’t going down. That is why we’re seeing hybrid drivetrains, lightweight construction, and the feasibility of using alternative fuels. The thinking is that eventually another gas crisis may come, but, also, the more economical cars that are sold, the more gas hogs they are allowed to sell. The high mileage of the econo-cars is averaged with that of the SUVs and trucks, and so a corporate “average” is attained.

Driving Wheels

On: Fri, Sep 30, 2011 at 11:16AM | By: Peter C Sessler

Driving Wheels test 2

Over the past twenty years, there has been a proliferation of four-wheel drive vehicles on the road. It would seem that good old two-wheel drive isn't adequate anymore, but that really depends on a lot of factors. Do you need four-wheel drive and what are its advantages over front-wheel and rear-wheel drive?

Senator Calls For Probe Of OnStar, OnStar Backs Down

On: Fri, Sep 30, 2011 at 10:17AM | By: Chris Weiss

Senator Calls For Probe Of OnStar, OnStar Backs Down test 2

Things were going so well for OnStar. Their platform has been getting richer and richer, it's now available in over-the-counter form, and it recently added a streamlined RemoteLink app. And then they go ahead and change the rules of their service, and all goes to hell.

Last week, OnStar announced changes that include controversial measures allowing it to sell customer data to third parties and continue monitoring users even after they cancel the service. In other words, OnStar can watch your every GPS move like Big Brother for the life of your vehicle, then sell the information to third party companies.

Nissan Mates Man And Machine

On: Thu, Sep 29, 2011 at 3:20PM | By: Chris Salamone

ROLLE (Sept. 28, 2011) test 2

Year after year, car manufacturers improve vehicle ‘safety’ with new technologies developed after incredible investment into research and development. But at what cost? Do drivers really want a seven-speed automatic transmission for smooth shifting or scores of multi-directional airbags adding precious weight to an already bloated ride? Who knows, but most people can agree that any automotive technology improvements are usually exciting—regardless of how practical they might be. Unfortunately, Nissan’s new plan to develop hands-free R&D driving technology rides the same fine line of an exciting development mixed with questionable practicality.  

After determining your driving patters, Nissan’s ‘car of tomorrow’ will be able to predict your next move. In theory, as the driver thinks about turning right the vehicle will prepare itself to turn, choosing the proper speed and road position for you.

Survey Says...Two-Thirds Of Drivers Use Too Much Tech

On: Wed, Sep 28, 2011 at 5:34PM | By: Chris Weiss

Survey Says...Two-Thirds Of Drivers Use Too Much Tech test 2

There's a growing rift in our technologically savvy society. On the one hand, you have the crowd that can't go five minutes without texting inanities to friends, surfing the Web on a tablet computer, and tapping into GPS to find out what local businesses are around and what Yelp reviewers think of them. On that same side of the aisle, you have automakers that are all too eager to appear hip and modern. On the other side, you have people that would prefer to be safe over cool and connected, people that don't believe the car should be a four-wheeled computer.

Well, if the results of a recent MetLife survey are accurate, it would appear the latter crowd is a lot stronger than the former—at least as it pertains to other drivers.

Toyota Ku:Rin Sets Record For Compressed Air Vehicle

On: Wed, Sep 28, 2011 at 4:58PM | By: Chris Weiss

Toyota Ku:Rin Sets Record For Compressed Air Vehicle test 2

Looking at the Ku:Rin, I thought to myself that it looks like the type of streamliner that you'd see out on the Bonneville Salt Flats. Actually, first I thought "What the hell is that colon doing in the middle of the car's name, and am I going to have to write that every time?!" Then I thought that it looks like a streamliner.

Well, I was both right and wrong. The Ku:Rin is indeed a world-record breaking car, but its record is a modest 80 mph. Because it runs on a unique fuel: air compression.