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Chevy Teases Next-Gen Malibu

On: Sat, Apr 2, 2011 at 11:33AM | By: Chris Weiss

2012 Chevy Malibu Teaser test 2

The 2012 Chevy Malibu is showing a little tail. Chevy released a teaser photo showcasing the driver-side taillights of the new car, in addition to a 1.5-minute video teaser. The car will be making back-to-back, worldwide appearances at the 2011 Shanghai Auto Show and the 2011 New York Auto Show, which will overlap later this month.

Automakers Move Toward a Single Standard for In-Vehicle Technology

On: Fri, Apr 1, 2011 at 5:57PM | By: Chris Weiss

single platform for in-vehicle technology test 2

Whether you find in-vehicle technology useful, fascinating or all-out terrifying, it's pretty clear that it's coming to cars from major manufacturers across the board. Given that each company has its own system, like MyFord Touch or GM's OnStar, the advance of technological components presents a growing problem to consumers and third-party manufacturers alike. In addition to power, equipment, price, efficiency, and other standard factors, auto buyers will soon have to compare advanced infotainment systems and try to figure out which best meets their needs. And electronic manufacturers face the prospect of having to develop parts and software for a large, segmented horde of proprietary systems.

Well, Nokia is leading a movement to nip this problem in the bud. The cell phone manufacturer hopes to develop a single platform for in-vehicle technology that will be utilized by all major auto brands.

More Whispers On Aston-Maybach Team-Up

On: Fri, Apr 1, 2011 at 4:56PM | By: Chris Weiss

Aston Martin Lagonda test 2

Rumors of an Aston Martin-Daimler/Maybach team-up have been surfacing and resurfacing for months. The latest rumor is the most decisive yet, indicating that not only is the Aston-Daimler deal coming, but it's already inked and signed. According to a report from Car and Driver, the deal was actually signed late last year.

Under the agreement, Aston will replace its stretched-to-the-limit 'vertical horizontal' platform with the help of Daimler. Aston needs a larger platform to base its upcoming Lagonda sedan on, and looked outside to find one. Aston found a willing ear in Daimler and will borrow a platform from Mercedes to build the Lagonda on. Aston will also borrow SUV architecture, engines, and possibly a new platform to replace the VH platform that underpins its sports cars.

Monthly Sales Expected To Slide Some Compared To February

On: Fri, Apr 1, 2011 at 4:18PM | By: Tim Healey

Monthly Sales Expected To Slide  test 2

With sales numbers expected to be released on Friday for the month of March, automotive-industry analysts and experts are expecting numbers to tumble somewhat month over month.

There are three main reasons for that: Supply disruptions caused by the natural disasters in Japan, higher gas prices, and the expiration of some incentives.


Aston Martin Phone Is a Thing of Beauty

On: Fri, Apr 1, 2011 at 4:10PM | By: Chris Weiss

Aston Martin CT002 Phone test 2

Ordinarily, we're not particularly interested in gear that doesn't have at least two wheels, an engine/motor, and a gearbox. In fact, automaker-licensed gear is often just a nice way of saying "overpriced, oddly branded crap". But in the case of a new phone bearing Aston Martin's logo, automaker branding has never looked better. The CPT002 concept phone is a stunning piece of technology built by Canadian luxury phone manufacturer Mobiado.

The Sound of Savings; The Cruze Eco

On: Fri, Apr 1, 2011 at 2:29PM | By: Lou Ruggieri

Chevrolet Cruze Eco test 2

So, if you are anything like me, even during this heightened fossil fuel, ‘go green or go home’  paradigm shift that has all but taken hold of the planet, you still are not quite willing to surrender your gas-powered engine for some electrical half-gas, half-battery, silent-synergy science project… At least not yet. Plus with companies like Toyota, you can’t help but wonder about potential recalls at this point. Not to mention batteries that still need a bit more time to really prove themselves totally reliable, there are a lot of reasons to not jump on that electric band wagon.

Classic Car Cultist: The Judge

On: Fri, Apr 1, 2011 at 1:38PM | By: Chris Salamone

1969 Pontiac GTO, The Judge test 2

All rise, the Judge is in session. In 1969 Pontiac launched a new model type for the stout, muscle bearing GTO, aptly named ‘The Judge’. The vehicle’s name came from a comedy routine called “Here Comes the Judge” in Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In TV show. In its developmental phase, the Judge was supposed to be a cheap, stripped down version of the GTO to compete with the Plymouth Road Runner. Ha! We all know that plan was thrown out the window.

Instead Pontiac created the ultimate street performance car with an equally potent image. The Judge package initially cost $332 more than the standard GTO but included a Ram Air III engine, a Hurst shifter, decals, wide tires, Rally II wheels, and (of course) a spoiler.

Mercedes to Unveil Two New Cars in New York

On: Fri, Apr 1, 2011 at 11:49AM | By: Chris Weiss

2012 Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe test 2

As any good auto-show junkie knows, the 2011 New York Auto Show will commence in less than a month. While the show doesn't have the panache of the earlier and more robust Geneva show, it typically plays host to several prominent debuts and concept cars.

For this year's New York event, Mercedes has one of each planned. According to a Carscoop report, the German luxury car maker will present an all-new AMG model as well as a new concept car. Those two debuts will join the already announced 2012 C63 AMG Coupe.

Porsche Panamera Turbo S Previewed Before New York

On: Fri, Apr 1, 2011 at 11:26AM | By: Chris Weiss

Porsche Panamera Turbo S test 2

The most powerful iteration of the Porsche Panamera sedan yet will make its debut at the 2011 New York Auto Show next month. In preparation for the show, Porsche detailed the new sedan a little early. The Panamera Turbo S brings more power, more speed, and more standard equipment.

Porsche upgrades the Panamera Turbo's 4.8-liter twin-turbo V8 with new turbochargers with titanium-aluminum turbines and a reprogrammed engine control. The result is an extra 50 horses--up to 550-hp—and an extra 37 lb-ft of torque—up to 553 lb-ft. In Sport and Sport Plus modes that torque can be temporarily boosted up to 590 lb-ft.

Ford's Extreme Pothole Proving Grounds

On: Thu, Mar 31, 2011 at 4:26PM | By: Chris Salamone

Ford's Extreme Pothole Proving Grounds  test 2

After a Viking-worthy winter and large spending cuts in both Europe and the United States, potholes are likely to be unfortunately common this spring and summer. But Ford drivers can relax, knowing their tried and true vehicles are tested for these exact conditions at the Lommel Proving Ground in Belgium and the Michigan Proving Ground in the US. Both test tracks feature real-world simulations and data acquisition supported by the best gearheads in the business.

Ford’s press release from March 30th indicated that several types of road conditions are simulated including moderately rough roads, such as those in Europe and North America, and severely rough roads, like those in emerging markets, taking into account that weather conditions can make these roads even worse. Further, both the Lommel and Michigan Proving Grounds include replicated roads from across the globe. Thus vehicles tested at these facilities might face something like the shambolic Lower Dunton Road in Essex, UK in preparation for real-world obstacles.

Making Of Ferrari FF Promo Video

On: Thu, Mar 31, 2011 at 12:47PM | By: Chris Weiss

Making of Ferrari FF Promo Video  test 2

Ferrari already wowed us with its 3.5-minute official FF promo video showing the concept tackling about every type of terrain that a vehicle can tackle. Now it's done it once again with a making-of video that shows exactly how the promo was put together.

When it comes to auto videos, there's a massive disparity between the people who watch them and the people who make them. As viewers, we watch the video unfold within minutes. But on the other side of the camera, a crew of professionals works tirelessly for hours and days on end to create a visual masterpiece worthy of a car bearing a Prancing Horse or Raging Bull. All that work doesn't really matter to the viewer; the only thing that matters is the final product. Within minutes, viewers make a polar decision: thumbs up/thumbs down.