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The Latest News And Reviews
Throughout The Car Industry

Categories: Technology

Dyson-Mazda Racing Into 2010

On: Wed, Dec 16, 2009 at 12:34PM | By: John Welch

Dyson Racing test 2

The Lola-built LMP2 coupes of Dyson Mazda Racing are arguably the most visually stimulating cars entered in the American Le Mans Series. Good lookin'? Yes. Reliable? Eh, not so much.

Last season saw the Dyson team constantly battling mechanical gremlins - problems with the turbo, fuel delivery issues, overheating . . . when the car ran well however, it was unstoppable. And let's not forget, ravishing.

For 2010 the team has put serious man-hours into engineering a bullet proof racer. Lola has been working on some new tricks as well. Pending IMSA approval, the team will also switch to bio-butanol fuel for both cars . . . busy off season!

Wireless Sensors

On: Tue, Dec 15, 2009 at 2:32PM | By: Geoff Ciesla

Wireless Parking Sensor test 2

The idea in theory is interesting, but it may cause more harm than good. Starting this fall, San Francisco will test 6,000 of its 24,000 metered spaces, enabling drivers to be notified by street signs or cell phones when a spot becomes available.

Hexatech C3TR, Worth Every Stinking Penny!

On: Thu, Nov 19, 2009 at 1:55PM | By: John Welch

Cruden Hexatech C3TR test 2

If anyone is paying attention, this is my Christmas List:

1.) Six dozen cases of Widmer Hefeweizen.

2.) 35 cartons of Marlboro Reds.

3.) 300 some-odd gallons of Dutch Brothers Espresso,

and 4.) the Hexatech C3TR six-post Racing Simulator.

 . . . then I would humbly request that I be left in solitude until July . . .

Button Leaves Brawn-Mercedes, Heads To McLaren- Mercedes

On: Wed, Nov 18, 2009 at 4:21PM | By: John Welch

Jenson to Mclaren test 2

Jenson Button does it all. He wins championships, has a different cast of models on his arm (arms, plural) at every race, and he has also authored a book on the 2009 World Championship - seemingly spewing out a novel in the span of two weeks. What a fancy Lad this Button is!

How do you follow all of this up? Why you simply leave your championship-winning outfit (that you have been a part of for the better part of ten years) to drive for a rival. Not because of money, not because of fanfare that comes with McLaren, but because you "want to be a member of an all-British GP team."

Balls, my friends, sheer Balls . . .


The Race of Champions, Bejing Pt1: The Machinery

On: Wed, Nov 4, 2009 at 5:14PM | By: John Welch

The Race of Champions, Bejing Pt1: The Machinery test 1-1

The Race of Champions has signaled the end of the racing season for many years now. Predominantly held in Europe, the RoC pits the best race drivers from around the world against each other in identical cars, on a track that crosses itself, ensuring the same distance traveled by both competitors.


This year's RoC is being held at the "Bird's Nest" Stadium in Beijing China, last used for the 2008 Summer Olympics. In our first installment of RoC coverage, AutoShopper will review the various machines to be raced in the 2009 RoC.

The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly

On: Fri, Oct 30, 2009 at 4:28PM | By: John Welch

The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly test 1-1

We check out the new Lexus LF-A configurator,

Bob Lutz loses a bet and makes carbloggers and Bimmer-philes everywhere very happy,

and American interiors, good gawd, American interiors.

Red Light Cameras: Show Me The Money

On: Wed, Oct 21, 2009 at 3:16PM | By: Clay Ritchings

Intersection With Camera test 2

I have not put much thought into the whole “red light camera” topic until my town decided to place these autonomous ticket printing machines up in strategic places that will Make Money. Make no mistake about it that when a town decides to use an independent company that has incentives to write tickets without the discretion of a police officer at the scene to take in the whole situation and use his judgment, they are in it to make money. I must say that in no way do I advocate reckless driving or breaking the laws, but If Big Brother is going to start writing tickets from an armchair in Arizona for your front tires being over the white line then I must protect myself.

ALMS Season Finale Pt.1

On: Wed, Oct 14, 2009 at 12:49PM | By: John Welch

ALMS Season Finale Pt.1 test 1-1

The American Le Mans Series, week to week, is the most entertaining racing of any kind in the world. It is a thinking man's sport; the sheer number of different car makes and drivetrains and classes gives a race-dork like me hours of brain food. After having learned every nuance of new cars and teams over the 2008/9 off-season, my autotechnophile-glands were swollen and ready to burst. This year saw several changes take place in the ALMS. Using the economic downturn as an excuse, Audi pulled out of the series for the first time in nine years. Running only two events, Sebring and Petit Le Mans, the Audi team was not able to dominate the series like they had in the past. A new LMP1 contender stood up to take their place, Acura.


Draw Electrical Power From The Road

On: Thu, Oct 8, 2009 at 5:05PM | By: Geoff Ciesla

Draw Electrical Power From The Road test 1-1

The future might just get more futuristic quicker than I thought. The concept of on-the-go recharging of electric cars may soon be a reality after a German engineering company IAV (Ingenieurgesellschaft Auto und Verkehr) pursues this promising technology. The company has received a patent for technology that would allow an electric car to be charged by an embedded strip in the road, using electromagnetic induction.

Volvo V70 Plug-In: Seriously? A Useful Hybrid?!

On: Thu, Oct 8, 2009 at 2:56PM | By: John Welch

Volvo V70 Plug-In: Seriously? A Useful Hybrid?! test 1-1

Yeah, yeah, we all know your Prius is just sooo kewl. We are super jealous, really. How could I possibly live without a car that has no room, is made out of crappy plastic and nickel, and costs north of 30 large? The media says I cannot, nay, must not drive a car that receives its locomotion from dead dinosaurs alone, and the media is always right; right?

If we all just have to drive hybrids, how difficult could it be to come up with one that has enough room for a family yet can still attain an impressive mpg rating? The Chevy Tahoe Hybrid and all of its offspring don't really count; 25 mpg isn't that impressive anymore. Volvo has the answer in the form of the stately V70 Two-Mode Plug-In Hybrid. And I thought Japanese sports cars had convoluted names . . .


Welcome Back, Kotter, Err, Lotus

On: Thu, Oct 8, 2009 at 11:48AM | By: John Welch

Welcome Back, Kotter, Err, Lotus test 1-1

The F1 title fight is coming down to the wire for 2009. At the Japanese Grand Prix, Brawn GP had the opportunity to clinch the manufacturer's title, and though they were not successful will have the chance again in Brazil. Brawn GP is the phoenix rising from the ashes of the Honda F1 team. After winning six of the first seven races, Brawn is finally seeing serious competition from more established teams like Red Bull and Mclaren, but most likely the title fight will go to Brawn.

Next season there will be several new teams entering F1, emboldened by Brawn GP's unlikely success. Manor Racing, Campos Racing, our home-nation favorite, USF1/GPE, and finally the return of Lotus, albeit under Malaysian ownership and based in Sepang. Unlike Brawn, these teams are all starting from scratch, using a brand new Cosworth engine (unfortunately, this is the same powerplant used by Williams in 2006; it should be competitive if the FIA allows minor updates; that's a BIG 'if') and placing that engine in freshly designed chassis.

How far along are these teams? A brief overview of each organization to follow . ..