Sunday, April 29, 2007

Getrag racing into dusk

Kia Sorento Facelift Recall (UK)

Kia is recalling all UK right-hand drive facelifted Sorentos, after a mix-up with the airbag wiring.
Because the wiring has simply been transposed, an impact on the left of the car would result in the airbags on the right-hand side of the vehicle going off, and vice versa.

Only vehicles built between 4 May 2006 and 28 March 2007 are affected; a total of 1561 cars.

Mercedes Goes Bluetec With GL And ML

2008 Mercedes GL 420 CDi Bluetec:
First one out will be the Bluetec version of the GL 420. Revealed as a concept at the Detroit Auto Show, Mercedes is now testing the real car in cold weather conditions. The production GL 420 Bluetec will keep the same big grille as on the concept, but the wider fender flares and the 21 inch wheels are not planned for the production.

With the GL 420 Bluetec Mercedes shows that even large high-performance SUVs can offer economical fuel consumption and extremely low emissions.

With its powerful V8 diesel delivering 290 bhp and 700 Nm of torque, the GL 420s anticipated fuel efficiency is just 9.8 litres per 100 km ( 24 mpg ). Seen here on these spy photos from Sweden, the bigger grille is disguised with some duct tape.

2009 Mercedes ML-Class Bluetec:

The model will combine advanced hybrid techno­logy with the brand's low-emission Bluetec diesel know-how. Likely to hit dealers in 2009, the 4x4 should emit less than 200g/km of CO2 and return 40mpg.

That puts it on a par with the latest C320 CDI.While there's no official confirma­tion yet, a senior source admitted: "It's a safe bet that our first move into hybrids will come with the M-Class, using a 3.2-litre V6 Bluetec diesel."By linking the two-mode hybrid system, developed with BMW and General Motors, Mercedes believes it can eclipse Lexus's trend-setting hybrid SUV, the RX400h.
The set-up uses an electric motor in the transmission to reduce weight, improve efficiency and absorb less power. BMW's M5 is also likely to get the green technology, while the Chevrolet Captiva and Vauxhall Antara are two of GM's candidates for the set-up.

F1 BMW @ Nordschleife

Saturday, April 28, 2007

4 New V10's Coming To Europe

German car manufactures are planning 4 new V10's for Europe. Porsche with the V10 Panamera which will be launched in 2008, BMW X6 V10 and two V10's belonging to the Audi RS8 and Audi RS6.

2008 Porsche Panamera V10:

Porsche is already undergoing high speed tests at the Nurburgring in Germany and undergoing cold-weather testing in Northern Sweden. The could be shown at the Frankfurt Motorshow later on this year. Prices are expected to start from �55,000 going to �84,000 for the range topping V10

2008 BMW X6 V10:

Theses test mules are sighted around the Nurburgring in Germany with huge roof spoilers. The test mules themselves are regular BMW X6's with a few modifications. The entry model will cost �40,000 with the V10 reaching around �70,000. Engines could possibly be a 6.0 litre petrol developing around 450bhp or so

2008 Audi RS8:

Prototype have been sighed at the Nurburgring only and a few have been burnt up on there. On the exterior parts of the prototypes are extended side air intakes, large front air intakes and the internal V10 which can't be seen

2008 Audi RS6:

Theses have been disguised in a checkerboard camouflage and are the the Nurburgring in Germany. These test mules tend to be 5 door hatchbacks with 4 tailpipes, twin exhaust pipes on each side. Expect a price tag of �55,000 to compete with the BMW M5

All prototype have 4 exhausts pipes with 2 on each side.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Nordschleife Wallpapers


The new BMW X3 has undergone more than just a facelift - it seems that most of the internal organs have been updated too.

To be honest, in terms of looks, it is a case of �spot the difference� between the previous version and the new model, such is the subtlety of the change. The front end has a larger kidney-shaped grille than before and the bumper and spoiler have been slightly re-designed. The front fog lights are now integrated into the main bodywork and beneath, the spoiler is now colour-coded.

Changes to the rear included new LED light clusters and more body-coloured panels than before. However, unless you are an X3 �buff�, at first glance there is very little that has changed and that is no bad thing.

It is curious that although most of the X3s sit on 17-inch alloy wheels, the car looks to have a relatively low roofline. The driver sits tall behind the new multifunctional, rake and reach adjustable, three-spoke steering wheel but there is no shortage of headroom.

The X3 comes in two forms; the SE and the M Sport. It also has a choice of two petrol and three diesel engines, of which, all but the �28,560, 2.0d diesel unit benefit from revised 6-cylinder engines. The test car was the X3 2.5si in SE trim, which costs �30,485 and is the smallest petrol engine in the range. Had the test car been in M Sport trim it would have a price tag of �32,570. The other petrol option is the 3.0si. Saying that there are three diesels is a bit of a cheat because as well as the aforementioned 2.0d, the remainder are 3.0-litre units; the 3.0d and 3.0sd. Prices for the X3 top out at �38,175 for the M Sport 3.0sd but you do get a lot of car for the money.


Car ManufacturerBMW
Car ModelX3 2.5Si SE
Body Type SUV
Colour Montego Blue
Performance [ Manufacturers Figures ]
0 - 62 mph8.5 Seconds
Top Speed 130 mph
Transmission6-Speed Manual
Fuel TypeUnleaded Petrol
Economy [ Manufacturers Figures ]
Urban20.6 mpg
Extra Urban36.7 mpg
Combined28.5 mpg
Insurance Group16
Euro NCAP RatingTBA
Warranty3-Year / Unlimited Mileage
provenance of article

2008 Hummer H3 Alpha

* Newest model in the performance-bred Alpha series
* Powerful 5.3L V-8 powertrain offers 295 hp (224 kW)*
* Maximum towing increased to 6,000 pounds (2,721 kg) � a 33-percent increase
* Unique exterior and interior features, including Alpha badging

Offering the towing capability that only a V-8 can, the 2008 H3 Alpha broadens HUMMER's range of versatile, do-anything and go-anywhere vehicles. HUMMER announced the H3 Alpha at the New York Auto Show; it goes on sale this summer.

The H3 Alpha is the second member of HUMMER's exclusive Alpha series, representing the pinnacle of performance, both off the road and on it. It comes with a new, 5.3L V-8 engine that delivers 295 horsepower (224 kW)* and 317 lb.-ft. of torque (438 Nm)*. It is partnered with a four-speed automatic transmission and enables a maximum towing capacity of 6,000 pounds (2,721 kg) � an increase of more than 33 percent over other H3 models

"H3 Alpha is, simply, the ultimate HUMMER H3," said Martin Walsh, HUMMER general manager. "It delivers all of H3's renowned off-road capability, but with enhanced performance that is suited to a variety of lifestyles."

In addition to the V-8 engine, the H3 Alpha also includes the popular "Luxury" equipment package, the Chrome Appearance package, 16-inch chrome wheels, a 4.10 rear axle ratio and special Alpha identification, including a prominent tailgate badge, horn pad badge and embroidered front headrests with the "Alpha" insignia.

For customers who want a more accessorized appearance straight from the factory, the Alpha model can be combined with the H3X content, which includes bright roof crossbows, chrome fuel door, a body-color grille and unique spare tire cover, tires, wheels and center cap, and a brush guard. Additionally, HUMMER Accessories offers an exclusive line of GM-designed, manufactured and validated accessories that are engineered and tested for no-compromises fit, finish and performance.

"Because HUMMER stands for more than just off-road performance, the H3 Alpha builds on the style and refinement of the H3 lineup and offers a unique, instantly recognizable statement on the road," said Walsh. "In short, the H3 Alpha matches HUMMER's off-road expectations with on-road attitude."

Alpha � the ultimate HUMMER
HUMMER Alpha models represent the top in performance, capability and comfort. The H1 Alpha was the first of these ultimate HUMMERs, and like the H3 Alpha, it offered a more powerful engine as well as unique styling and comfort features.

The H3 is the newest model to carry the Alpha flag, and represents HUMMER's first Alpha model engineered in conjunction with GM Performance Division.

Award-winning interior and safety enhancements
The H3 Alpha shares the same widely admired interior as all H3 models, including detail revisions and enhancements that have been implemented across the lineup. New child safety locks for the rear doors and easier-to-use power window switches were introduced during the '07 model year and reflect customers' input.

"Details matter, and our customers told us these details were particularly important, so we updated the H3 lineup to address them," said Walsh.

Also new for the H3 Alpha and the entire 2008 H3 lineup are standard head curtain side air bags; they were previously optional. Additional standard safety features now found on all H3 models include:

* StabiliTrak electronic stability control system
* Four-wheel antilock brakes with traction control
* Dual front air bags with Passenger Sensing System
* Tire pressure monitoring system
* Vehicle-to-vehicle crash compatibility
* LATCH rear child seat anchors

HUMMER's Rear Vision system and a navigation system are available. The Rear Vision system uses a camera mounted near the rear bumper to provide a view of objects directly behind the vehicle. Also, the safety and security of OnStar is standard, and its new Turn-By-Turn Navigation feature is available.

Powertrain details
The H3 Alpha's 5.3L engine is a powerful and efficient member of GM's legendary small-block V-8 family. It is rated at 295 horsepower (224 kW)* and 317 lb.-ft. of torque (438 Nm)*; and is similar to the small-block V-8 found in the Chevy Silverado, which was named the 2007 Truck of the Year at the North American International Auto Show.

"For jobs such as towing personal watercraft up a mountain to the lake, the small-block V-8's torque performs with effortless ease and little impact on fuel mileage," said Christopher Meagher, assistant chief engineer of small-block V-8 truck engines. "The 5.3L engine greatly broadens the H3's towing capability."

Effortless highway driving also is an attribute of the 5.3L V-8, which enables 0-60 mph performance of approximately eight seconds.

"All of the powertrain options in the H3 lineup deliver performance suited to different driving styles and needs," said Meagher. "But when it comes to certain tasks such as towing, there is sometimes no substitute for a V-8 engine."

An aluminum cylinder block is used with the H3 Alpha's engine. It helps reduce overall mass and maintains a more desirable front-to-rear weight balance. Like all of GM's small-block V-8 engines, highlights include:

* Deep-skirt cylinder block with cross-bolted main caps
* High-flow cylinder heads
* Electronic throttle control
* 58X ignition system
* E67 32-bit controller
* Polymer-coated pistons with full-floating wrist pins
* Returnless fuel system
* Lightweight valvetrain
* Steel camshaft
* Low-restriction air intake system

GM's small-block V-8 engines are engineered to meet today's more stringent emissions standards. In fact, the H3 Alpha's V-8 engine beats the deadline for new, U.S. federal emissions standards by a year. And compared to truck engines of a decade ago, the small-block engine family is approximately 90 percent cleaner. Cast iron exhaust manifolds matched with four close-coupled catalytic converters help reduce cold-start emissions, which is the largest source of vehicle emissions.

A Hydra-Matic 4L60 electronically controlled four-speed automatic transmission is paired with the H3 Alpha's V-8 engine. And, as with all H3 models, flat-towing is enabled.

New V-8 drives vehicle-wide enhancements
HUMMER H3 and GM Performance Division engineers did more than simply shoehorn a V-8 engine into the H3's engine compartment. Accommodating the new power plant necessitated the execution of a seemingly endless number of technical details � many of which have been implemented across the entire H3 lineup.

The H3's frame was modified to accept the V-8 engine, and a special oil pan was designed to ensure constant oil pressure when driving on steep grades � a hallmark of HUMMER's off-road capability. Also, the engine compartment front of dash was modified to accommodate the V-8, and a new steering system is used on all H3 models to deliver better on-center feel and even more improved off-road reliability.

To support the torque output of the powerful V-8, the H3 Alpha's front differential case is made of cast iron; other models feature an aluminum case. New engine mounts, higher torsion bar rates to support the increased mass, and specific shock valving also are unique to the V-8-powered model, ensuring it continues to deliver the unparalleled ride quality � both on- and off-road � that customers expect.

All of the chassis and suspension changes were validated in real-world testing on off-road trails in Moab, Utah, the Rubicon Trail and other challenging off-road venues.

"Our engineers live, breathe and eat off-road driving," said Walsh. "To say they sweat the details is an understatement."

A HUMMER by any measure
All H3 models pack HUMMER's trademark capability into a midsize package. Compared to the H2, the H3 is 16.9 inches (429 mm) shorter in length, six inches (152 mm) shorter in height and 6.5 inches (165 mm) narrower. Roughly the same length as a midsize family sedan, H3 comfortably navigates city traffic and fits nicely in parking garages.

The H3 lineup also delivers exceptional rock crawling and climbing performance; it was engineered for off-road leadership among midsize SUVs. The heart of this capability is its electronically controlled four-wheel-drive system and suspension tuning tailored for off-road performance. In addition, the H3 features standard underbody shielding, brake traction control, and an optional 4.03:1 transfer case with rear locking differential.
Among its off-road credentials, the H3 can ford 24-inch (610 mm) streams at a 5-mph pace, climb 16-inch (407 mm) vertical steps and rocks, make its way through deep sand and race easily over sandy surfaces.

H3's more maneuverable size provides advantages, such as a 37-foot turning circle that is about the same as a typical compact car, making easy work of parking lot maneuvers and tight turns when off-roading. The 9.1-inch (231 mm) ground clearance and maximum breakover angle of 25 degrees (with 33-inch tires) both make it possible to clear large obstacles in off-road driving. Serious off-road performance is also aided by the maximum approach angle of 39 degrees and maximum departure angle of 37 degrees. These approach and departure angles permit the H3 to drive into a hole and back out again, without getting hung up in the front or rear.
provenance of article

Dodge Viper

The Dodge Viper, introduced in 1993, is the American version of a Fantasy Car. Featuring the largest engine among the Car Evolution on this site, and one of the largest to be fitted in a production car ever, an 8.0lt unit producing more than 400bhp and a much more impressive amount of torque (662Nm).

The Viper has been praised for its direct race car feel and it surely is not a game to play with. How, anyway could a car with more than 400 bhp driving the rear wheels only and without any type of electronic help be a game to play with?

Viper's muscle car design is fully justified given that it is directed, primarily, for the American market. Various different versions have appeared during the last years after the initial RT/10 Model

Engine Type

V 10

Engine Size

7990 cc


415 bhp@5200


662 Nm (488 lb.ft)@3600

Max. Speed

256 km/h (160 mph)

0-60 mph

4.8 sec

0-100 mph

9.9 sec

1/4 mile

12.2 sec @ 118 mph


1555 kg (3345 lb)



provenance of article http://www.fantasyCar

The Murcielago

In the late afternoon of the 5th October 1879, after a fiercely fought contest in the arena of Cordoba, a bull named Murcielago from the stud farm of Joaquin del Val di Navarra had his life spared by the famous matador Rafael Molina �Lagartijo�.

This was a very rare occurrence in bullfighting, and an honor accorded only to those bulls that have shown exceptional courage and spirit in the arena. And Murcielago was indeed such a bull. He was subsequently donated to the breeder Antonio Miura, and went on to father a formidable line of fighting bulls that extends right down to the present day.2006 Lamborghini Murcielago

The Concept of Murcielago

The Lamborghini Murcielago is 2-seater, 2-door coupe (with the now familiar gull-wing doors) based on the traditional Lamborghini layout: mid-mounted V12 engine, typical Lamborghini transmission with the gearbox mounted in front of the engine and the rear differential integrated into the engine unit, permanent four-wheel drive with central viscous coupler.

This layout, successfully employed by Lamborghini for more than 30 years, affords an optimal weight distribution (58% rear and 42% front) with conspicuous advantages for traction, braking and handling. The suspension design (independent double wishbones) represents the best possible solution for a high-performance GT and, again, is in keeping with Lamborghini tradition.

The external bodywork panels are made from carbon fiber, with the exception of the steel roof and door panels.

The rear of the Lamborghini Murcielago features two "active" intakes for the engine cooling air. With the exclusive VACS (�Variable Air-flow Cooling System�), the aperture of these air intakes can be varied to suit the driving conditions. Furthermore, to ensure correct aerodynamic equilibrium at all speeds, the angle of the rear spoiler can also be altered. According to the speed of the car, the rear spoiler can assume three different positions: closed from 0 to 80 mph, partially open (50�) between 80 and 140 mph and fully open (70�) above 140 mph. Depending on the aperture of the air intakes and the position of the rear spoiler, the car's Cx coefficient varies from a minimum of 0.33 to a maximum of 0.36. Bi-xenon headlights produce both main and dipped beams.

For the windscreen wiper, it was decided to adopt the proven single-arm pantograph design. This system increases the area swept by the wiper blade, thereby reducing blind spots in the visual field of the driver, and operates correctly at high speed without obstructing the driver's view when at rest.

The wing mirrors can be folded electrically and are mounted on long support arms so that the driver can see beyond the rear wings, which are especially prominent when the air intakes are open. However, mirror stability is not compromised, even at high speeds.

Murcielago Model Year 2006

There are new features on the Lamborghini flagship, the 12-cylinder Murcielago Coupe and Roadster, for model year 2006.

The most important of these is without doubt the possibility to equip the car with carbon-ceramic brakes.

Carbon-ceramic discs offer clear benefits:

  • braking efficiency remains constant at both low and high temperature, with no fading, even after hard use
  • improved handling, agility and efficiency
  • shorter braking distances with reduced pedal effort

These advantages are complemented by:

  • longer lifetime
  • lighter than steel
  • �state of the art� system

The Murcielago MY06 has a new standard equipment package, which includes a Becker navigation system (not for the USA) and a range of new options.

Optional equipment includes the �Interior Carbon Package�, where a number of the interior components are made from carbon fiber:

  • cover for the driver side display
  • dashboard cover (right and left sides)
  • handbrake lever
  • cover for the air conditioning and radio
  • handles on the sides of the centre tunnel
  • gearlever cover
  • frame around the armrest
  • ashtray

A further optional extra is the �Branding Package�, which comprises the Lamborghini logo in relief on the headrests and the colored Lamborghini logo on the wheels.

The Murcielago MY06 Coupe is now also available in the exclusive new color Oro Adonis (gold), already available for the Roadster version.

The "Privilege Programme" car customization option is also available for the Murcielago MY06

Type: V12
Displacement cu in (cc): 378 (6192)
Power bhp (kW) at RPM: 580(426) / 7500
Torque lb-ft (Nm) at RPM: 480(650) / 5400
Redline at RPM: 8000
Brakes & Tires
Brakes F/R: ABS, vented disc/vented disc
Tires F-R: 245/35 ZR18 - 335/30 ZR18
Driveline: All Wheel Drive
Exterior Dimensions & Weight
Length � Width � Height in: 178.6 � 79.8 � 44.3
Weight lb (kg): 3637 (1650)
Acceleration 0-62 mph s: 3.8
Top Speed mph (km/h): > 205 (> 330)
Fuel Economy EPA city/highway mpg (l/100 km): 9/13 (21.5)

provenance of article
http://www.rsportsCar Evolution/murcielago.asp

2008 Ford Shelby GT500 KR

At the New York Auto Show this year Ford will be unveiling the 2008 Ford Shelby GT500 KR "King of The Road" limited edition Mustang. The Shelby GT500 KR Mustang will feature a 540 horsepower 5.4L supercharged V8 with Ford Racing Power Pack upgrade, 3.73:1 rear axle ratio, short throw shifter and a beefed up suspension. The exterior of this beast will get a unique Carbon composite hood, 18-inch wheels and special 40th Anniversary badging along with GT500 KR striping.

* Celebrating the fortieth anniversary of the original Shelby Cobra GT500KR, Ford and Shelby collaborate on a new 'King of the Road' Mustang with the 2008 Shelby GT500KR.
* Shelby GT500KR features an estimated 540-hp 5.4-liter supercharged V-8 with a Ford Racing Power Upgrade Pack, 3.73:1 rear axle ratio, short-throw shifter, and unique suspension tuning.
* Exterior design draws inspiration from the classic Shelby KR Mustangs and features unique carbon composite hood, wheels, and special 40th Anniversary badging and unique striping.
* Shelby GT500KR arrives in spring 2008 in an exclusive run of only 1000 units

Ford and Shelby Automobiles are at it again, this time in celebration of the fortieth anniversary of the 1968 Shelby Cobra GT500KR. To be unveiled at the 2007 New York International Auto Show, the 2008 Shelby GT500KR-the most powerful Mustang to date-will once again mark Mustang as 'King of the Road.'

"I'm proud to once again be a part of an historical moment, bringing back the 'King of the Road' Mustang, and collaborating with Ford SVT and Ford Racing" said Carroll Shelby. "I'm committed to continuously upping the ante when it comes to performance, and it's great to be doing it with Ford." "The return of the Shelby GT500KR further establishes Mustang as the true king of the pony car segment," said Robert Parker, manager of Ford Car Brand. "With the unveiling of the new KR we are staying true to the promise we made our loyal Mustang fans to continue Mustang's prowess by bringing new, exciting and more powerful Mustangs to market."

Forty years ago, at the 1967 New York Auto Show, Ford introduced the most powerful Shelby Mustang ever. Like every Mustang that bore the name 'Shelby,' the GT500KR carries with it its own unique story.

The 1968 Shelby Cobra GT500KR was a mid-year introduction, based on the 1968 Shelby GT500. Ford added 'Cobra' to the Shelby's moniker to help usher in the beginning of a new performance era at the company. The Cobra name referred to the new 428 Cobra Jet V-8 that was planted under the KR's custom fiberglass hood. It was the engine that would once again vault the Mustang to the head of the pack.

Ford conservatively rated the 428 CJ at 335-horsepower, but in reality it made more than 400-horsepower and 440 pounds-feet of torque. The KR model was also equipped with a modified suspension and was offered both in fastback and convertible models. Ford dealers sold 1,570 GT500KR models in 1968, 1053 fastbacks and 517 convertibles.

While the name 'King of the Road' may have been the perfect fit for the world's most powerful Mustang, it also provided Shelby the chance to steal the thunder from cross-town rival General Motors. As the legend goes, Shelby learned that GM was planning to introduce a high-performance model and call it 'King of the Road.'

Since he had always wanted to use the name, and as one to never miss an opportunity, Shelby set his organization in gear, registering the name and designing new badging for the Cobra Jet-powered Mustang, christening it the GT500KR, and bringing Ford's 'King of the Road' to market before GM ever got a chance to apply the name to their product.

Thoroughbred Pedigree
Just like its 1968 namesake, the 2008 Ford Shelby GT500KR builds on the strong foundation of the Shelby GT500. Packing 40 more horses under its custom-designed carbon composite hood, the GT500KR is the most powerful production Ford Mustang ever produced.

The modern Shelby Mustang line-up started with the 2007 Shelby GT500 coupe and convertible. With the recent launch of the 2007 Shelby GT, the 2008 Shelby GT500KR becomes the third production high-performance Mustang brought to market through the relationship of Shelby Automobiles and Ford. Ford and Shelby Automobiles also partnered up with Hertz to produce a special limited run of 500 Shelby GT-H "rent-a-racer" Mustangs available only for rent.

The 2007 Shelby GT500 has been one of the most successful vehicle programs in the 14-year history of Ford Special Vehicle Team (SVT) and that success has opened the door for more performance collaborations with Shelby Automobiles and Ford Racing. Working together, these three performance powerhouses are driving Mustang momentum on the street and on the racetrack. Dealers cannot keep the Car Evolution on their lots, customers are clamoring for more, and racers are bringing home championships.

Shelby Mustangs have already achieved some impressive highlights showcasing an enthusiast demand that is unmatched in the business:
# The first 2007 Shelby GT500 available to the public sold for $600,000 dollars at the 2006 Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Auction in Scottsdale, AZ benefiting the Carroll Shelby Children's Foundation.
# 2007 Shelby GT VIN#1 also went for $600,000 at charity auction, this time at the 2007 Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Auction (and the winning bidder also took the opportunity to purchase VIN#2 at MSRP).
# Shelby GT-H coupes auctioned off to Ford dealers after completion of Hertz rental duty consistently average $50,000, with high auction bids of $90,000.

The Shelby GT500KR will be produced in an exclusive run of 1000 units and will begin arriving in Ford dealers in the spring of 2008.

Crowning the New "King of the Road"
Doug Gaffka, Ford SVT chief designer, and his team worked closely with Carroll Shelby and the Shelby team to make certain the new KR was crafted in the spirit of the original Shelby muscle car.

"This was a great effort between Ford and Shelby Automobiles," said Gaffka. "The Shelby team and I were in constant contact melding Carroll's classic design cues with some modern concepts and ideas and finessing them into the design of the new KR."

Gary Davis, vice president of production and product development for Shelby Automobiles, played a key role in defining the look of the custom designed carbon composite hood for the GT500KR. His knowledge of the original GT500KR helped sculpt a modern interpretation of the original's bulging hood scoop, a visual indication of the extra horsepower packed beneath it. The hood is secured by a pair of stainless steel, twist-down hood pins. The composite front valance houses a pair of chrome-trimmed, functional brake ducts to cool the large 14-inch, vented Brembo front brakes.

Side stripes are true to the original KR right down to the font used for the 'GT500KR' lettering, while the classic LeMans-style striping that races down the center of the car has been deleted between the leading forward edge of the hood scoops and the front of the hood, accenting the scoops and giving the KR its distinctive face. "That was Shelby's idea," said Gaffka. "It's a special touch that adds some down-the-road differentiation. There will be no doubt that it's a 'King of the Road' Mustang that's filling up your rearview mirrors."

The show car wears exclusive, Shelby-designed 20-inch, forged, polished aluminum wheels with special custom center caps, mounted on Pirelli rubber. Production models will arrive with an 18-inch version of the design.

Each KR model is identified by special 40th Anniversary KR badges on the fenders and grille, distinctive body colored mirror caps and Shelby lettering stretching across the front of the hood and along the rear portion of the deck lid. A special Shelby VIN tag is affixed to each vehicle, mounted in the engine compartment.

The all-leather interior features Carroll Shelby signature embroidered headrests and an official Shelby CSM 40th Anniversary GT500KR dash plate mounted at the top of the center stack.

The KR's 5.4-liter V-8 Gets the Royal Treatment
Just like its namesake, the 2008 'King of the Road' packs a walloping dose of Ford performance power under its massive composite hood scoops. The Ford SVT-engineered 5.4-liter supercharged V-8 is treated to a Ford Racing Power Upgrade Pack that boosts horsepower to an estimated 540 and torque to 510 ft.-lbs., thanks to revised ignition and throttle calibration and a cold air intake system that replaces the stock unit.

Calibration modifications include advancing the ignition timing as well as re-mapping of the electronic throttle settings to provide quicker throttle response for better off-line and mid-range acceleration. Increased throttle response will be met with a sharper roar from the Ford Racing-inspired exhaust system.

Power is delivered to the rear wheels through a Tremec TR6060 six-speed manual transmission and 3.73:1 rear axle ratio, upgraded from the standard GT500's 3.31:1. Gear selection is courtesy of an all-new Ford Racing short-throw shifter making its debut on the KR. Topped with a white ball, the new shifter is 25 percent shorter than the unit on the GT500 providing for crisper, sharper shifts.

Ford SVT, Ford Racing and Team Shelby worked together to develop the KR's suspension tuning. Based on initial work by Ford Racing and the team at Shelby, often at Shelby's own facility on the grounds of Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Ford SVT chassis engineers will apply fine tuning techniques to prepare it for the streets.

"The production Shelby GT500 was maximized to deliver the perfect balance between ride and handling," said Jamal Hameedi, chief nameplate engineer, Ford SVT. "In that same ride versus handling continuum, the KR will lean heavier towards all-out handling while still making it drivable on the street."

Chassis engineers worked closely with the engine department in a holistic approach to the development of the KR, tuning the suspension to best optimize the engine enhancements.

"We aren't fixing our attention on one or two attributes, but working on the vehicle as a whole," stated Gary Patterson, vice president of operations for Shelby Automobiles. "The throttle response, power delivery, exhaust note, and handling should all gel together to deliver a total driving experience."

The GT500KR will feature unique spring rates, dampers, stabilizer bars, and strut tower brace, all designed specifically for the KR, to deliver the precision handling package.

Mustang Momentum Cannot be Stopped
Unwilling to wait for the impending pony car war to heat up, Ford is extending Mustang's leadership position by feeding the enthusiast demand for more models, features, performance parts, and special editions. Ford has committed to at least one new Mustang 'feature' vehicle per year. For 2007, it is the Shelby GT, and for 2008, there will be at least two including the Shelby GT500KR and the previously announced Mustang Bullitt. Ford's 'Steed for Every Need' strategy currently offers four horsepower options for Mustang, with pricing from $19,995 for a 240-hp V-6 Mustang coupe to $46,500 for a 500-hp Shelby GT500 convertible.

Ford has also introduced several special packages on Mustang further increasing its unique offerings, including the Pony Package and the California Special. In addition, Ford Racing offers a complete catalog of performance parts for Mustang fans, from custom wheels and exhausts to the complete, turn-key Ford Racing Mustang FR500C race car.

As a result, Ford offers Mustang enthusiasts the ability to buy, modify and drive the steed that perfectly fits their need.

* 2008 Ford Shelby GT500KR � Specifications and Design Highlights
* 5.4-liter supercharged V-8 producing an estimated 540-horsepower and 510 ft.-lbs. of torque
* Ford Racing Power Upgrade Pack featuring revised calibration and cold air intake system
* 6-speed manual transmission with 3.73:1 rear axle ratio
* Ford Racing performance exhaust system
* Unique performance suspension tuning: springs, dampers, and stabilizer bars
* Shelby-designed 'GT500KR' 20-inch wheels (18-inch version for production)
* Ford Racing short-throw shifter and front strut tower brace
* Unique carbon composite hood featuring classic Shelby 'KR' design
* Front brake cooling ducts
* 'Shelby' lettering across the front edge of hood and rear decklid
* 40th Anniversary badges on the front quarter panels
* Carroll Shelby signature embroidered headrests and floor mats
* Official Shelby CSM 40th Anniversary GT500KR dash plate

provenance of article

Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution

2003-2005 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution

Driver side front view of a Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution

For the past fifteen years, the fastest Car Evolution in the world over unseen, challenging roads haven't been Porsches or Dodge Vipers or Ferraris or any other type of supercar. No, the Car Evolution in question have been pumped-up compact family sedans, the Car Evolution automakers have used as the basis of their Group A rally weaponry.

Europeans and the Japanese have known this for some time, reveling in Car Evolution such as the Lancia Delta Integrale, the Ford Escort Cosworth, the Subaru Impreza WRX, and the Mitsubishi Lancer Evo. (Even the original BMW M3 was a homologation special for Group A racing and had its fair share of success in tarmac rallies.) The recipe is pretty simple: compact sedan or hatchback, turbo-charged engine, all-wheel drive, meaty brakes and tires. Fire up, and go like hell, whatever the weather, whatever the roads.

In the States, the PlayStation generation and pockets of enthusiasts have known all about these Car Evolution and have been wanting to drink from the rally car well. Subaru finally brought its Impreza WRX to America in 2001, a mere nine years after it debuted in Japan, and the mighty STi finally arrives this summer. Despite Subaru's trepidation, the WRX has been a smash hit, providing outstanding performance, practicality, and value.

Mitsubishi had a bit more of a dilemma than Subaru. The basic WRX uses a fairly unsophisticated all-wheel-drive system and a moderately powerful turbo engine, which keeps the car affordable. By comparison, the more powerful, better-braked, and racier STi will cost about 25 percent more than the regular WRX. The recent Lancer Evos all had 276-horsepower engines as standard, mated to a sophisticated all-wheel-drive system that used torque-sensing front and electronically controlled rear differentials. That made the Evo a more expensive car than a regular WRX, positioning it against the STi in a much higher price bracket: It's one thing to sell an Evo or an STi on its performance merits at a price less than $30,000, but persuading people to part with more than that for what looks like a warmed-over compact sedan is a much lower-volume proposition.

One gets the feeling that the enthusiasts inside Mitsubishi were waiting to see how the WRX fared here before fully committing to a U.S. version of the Evo. After all, these Car Evolution are hard-core, aimed at people who put performance and speed above styling, luxurious interiors, and prestige. Car Evolution like the Evo score with people who know Car Evolution, but they barely register with nonenthusiasts.

Full engine view of a Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution

The U.S.-spec Evo VIII�or the Evolution, as it's known in a country with no prior Evo history�has a few compromises to keep the price at less than $30,000. Compared with the Japanese and European versions, there's a less complicated drivetrain that uses mechanical differentials. The six-speed manual transmission was replaced by a five-speeder for durability reasons. And the turbocharged in-line four-cylinder engine makes "just" 271 horsepower, down from 276 because of emissions requirements.

Externally, the Evolution looks like a Lancer that has been to a speed shop. Bulged wheel arches, an aggressive fascia, striking seventeen-inch Enkei wheels, and a way-cool carbon fiber, dual-element rear wing give the Evolution a chunkier, sportier mien. More subtle performance-car cues are the red Brembo brake calipers lurking behind the wheels, a four-inch exhaust tip, and stylish projector headlamps. The cognoscenti will know this car when they see it, but valet parkers will think you're part of the import-tuner scene.

Driver side interior view of a Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution

Inside, the Evolution is understated. Only a sweet alloy-spoked Momo steering wheel, leather-wrapped shifter, supportive wraparound Recaros (which are bigger for U.S. plushbottoms than for the rest of the world), and silver gauge rims differentiate it from its economy-car roots. These are highlighted by interior plastics that fall well short of most Car Evolution you can buy for $30,000. Unlike many a performance car, this one is hugely practical, with a decent trunk and rear-seat leg room that easily betters that of the WRX. The equipment list is fine, with a standard six-speaker stereo, power windows and locks, and air conditioning; the dual-element rear wing and a sunroof are the only options. Mitsubishi plans to bring 6500 Evolutions into the United States in the first year.

The reason you'd spend twice as much for an Evolution than you would for a regular Lancer has nothing to do with the interior trim. Most of that money is under the skin, starting with 200 additional body-shell welds that double the torsional rigidity of the standard Lancer. Reinforcement is added in key areas, such as the front-strut tower mount, rear trailing arm, and upper-control-arm mounts. For the United States, the car is beefed up with side-impact beams and reinforced front and rear bumpers to meet safety regulations. To offset the weight of the body reinforcement, the Evolution has an aluminum hood and front fenders.

The Evolution uses the same basic suspension layout as the Lancer, with a strut-type front end and a multi-link rear, but it shares few actual pieces. Up front, there's a strut-tower cross-brace to stiffen the mounting points. There are larger-diameter, gas-charged inverted struts, forged aluminum lower control arms and front knuckles (in place of steel), a lower-control-arm connecting bar, and a 0.9-inch-diameter anti-roll bar. The power-assisted rack-and-pinion steering has a quicker 13:1 ratio. The track is wider than a regular Lancer's, too.

At the rear, the A-shaped upper control arms and three subsidiary links per side are all forged aluminum in place of sheet steel, as is the suspension crossmember. The rear dampers and anti-roll bar are of larger diameter, while low friction and stiffer bushings are used all around. Brembo brakes are fitted, with 12.7-inch-diameter front and 11.8-inch rear ventilated discs. Four-piston aluminum calipers are used at the front, with twin-piston rears. The ABS has been upgraded for improved braking stability. Enkei cast aluminum seventeen-inch wheels, with spun ribs to reduce weight, are shod with exclusive P235/45R-17 Yokohama Advan tires.

Under the hood, the Evolution uses the venerable 4G63 in-line four-cylinder engine that first appeared here in the original 1989–94 Eclipse. In this turbocharged and intercooled application, the Evolution's cast iron block is reinforced, and there are forged steel connecting rods and crankshaft, with low-compression (8.8:1) aluminum pistons. With an 85.0-millimeter bore and an 88.0-millimeter stroke, the engine displaces 1997 cc and is supposedly limited to 7000 revs�but when we drove the car, no one found the limiter kicking in below 7500 rpm.

The engine has belt-driven dual overhead cams and four valves per cylinder in an aluminum-alloy head, with numerous subtle refinements. Hollow camshafts, tapered valve springs and aluminum retainers, and natrium-filled exhaust valves reduce valvetrain inertia and help response. The cams, as well as a magnesium-alloy cam cover, help reduce the engine's topside weight and thus its center of gravity. There are also more compact balance shafts to reduce inertia.

Full passenger side overhead view of a Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution

A twin-scroll turbo design helps improve mid- to low-end throttle response and torque output. Maximum boost is 19 psi at 3500 rpm. One of the coolest features is an automatic water-spray system for the air-to-air intercooler, which delivers two-second sprays of cold water every five seconds to lower air temperature. The system can be activated manually with a switch on the center console. The result of all this work is an engine that produces a most bountiful 271 horsepower at 6500 rpm and 273 pound-feet of torque at 3500 rpm.

Power is transmitted via a five-speed manual gearbox to a standard all-wheel-drive system that has a 50/50 front/rear torque split. The transfer case uses a bevel gear differential and viscous coupling to feed torque to an open-type front and a plate-type limited-slip rear differential.

The Lancer Evolution might look like a tuner sedan, but as soon as you get behind the wheel, it's apparent that it's the work of engineers with four rally world titles to their credit. The relationship among pedals, steering wheel, seat, and shifter is just right. The clutch is smooth and fluid, and the shifter has short throws and a sweet, easy action. The Evolution is easy to place, and outward visibility is excellent.

Actually, pretty much everything about the driving experience is excellent. Around the twisting Pattaya track in Thailand, it was a serious device. Mitsubishi claims that the 0-to-60-mph time is just under 5.0 seconds, the standing quarter-mile takes just 13.8 seconds, and the top speed is around 155 mph�numbers we can easily believe. In achieving that performance, though, the engine isn't the usual turbocharged light switch, revealing instead a linear power delivery on par with a much larger-capacity engine. From 3000 rpm, throttle response is scintillatingly sharp, and the engine rapidly zings past 7000 rpm. It doesn't sound particularly memorable from the inside, but the turbo's whistling and chirruping are suitably sporty.

Full rear view of a Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution

The single most impressive feature on the car is how idiot-proof it is, how easy it is to drive really fast. You don't need to have been to a racing school or to have learned to tame high-speed oversteer to go really, really fast in an Evolution. Cornering grip is outstanding�Mitsubishi claims lateral grip of 0.97 to 0.99 g�and the handling balance depends on your driving style. Go for the slow in, fast out approach, and you will have a little initial understeer followed by reassuring neutrality as you get on the gas. Gutsy drivers can throw it in way too hot and rotate the tail with either a dab of the brake pedal or a huge throttle lift before launching out of the corner as they put the power down. (We don't recommend this approach for the street . . . ) The all-wheel-drive system is pretty seamless, even in very tight turns where the initial understeer disappears as you squeeze on the power.

The brakes are fabulous; the ABS is perfectly tuned for track use, with no discernible wheel lock. The Evo even rides well, with impressive damping over Pattaya's evil curbs, although it is stiffly sprung. The car's only weakness is the steering, which is very accurate and direct but lacking in ultimate, Porsche-type feel. At highway speeds, the Evo is refined and doesn't suffer the low-speed torpor that afflicts the WRX.

If you want to go obscenely fast cross-country with minimal effort and still have a car that is practical family transport, the Evolution is the real deal. Until the WRX STi goes on sale, there's nothing for less than $45,000 that will cover ground as fast on secondary roads. If you want a car that shouts about you and your status in life, the Evolution isn't for you; but if you want a car for speed, then it is. The amazing thing is that it's a Mitsubishi�and even more amazing, it's based on the Lancer, a car that hardly sets our hearts aflutter. It's probably about time the Japanese automaker had an image car, because its current vibe is dowdy and dull. The Evolution should help to change that.

provenance of article

Ferrari 360

Ferrari 360

The V8 powered Ferrari 360 is available in both an open top convertible version known as the Spider and various hard top models including the Modena.
The 360 Spider and Modena are powered by Ferrari's 90 degree V8 engine which displaces nearly 3.6 litres and produces some 400bhp at around 8,500 rpm.

This engine is placed in a mid/rear postion and delivers it's power through a limited slip differential unit.

gleaming Ferrari 360 sports car

Performance of the Ferrari 360 is extemely high as would be expected from a Ferrari. Top speeds are over 180 mph and 0-60mph acceleration times in the 4 second bracket. This power is laid down through big and wide low profile tyres (275/40 at the rear of the Spider).

Formula one experience at Ferrari has been paying dividends in the company's road going sports car range. Such things as downforce have made their way into Car Evolution like the 360, not with wings but through chassis and body design. The 360 Spider can produce up to 374lbs of downforce helping to keep the car glued to the black stuff.

stunning Ferrari 360 picture

Brakes on these Car Evolution consist of large discs both front and back.
Suspension on the Ferrari 360 is of the double wishbone type at both the front and rear. Ferrari's setup uses anti-squat and anti-dive geometry for the high speed level handling these super Car Evolution are famous for.

The convertible Spider versions have an automated hood system which deploys the roof in around 20 seconds.

Ferrari also make the 360 GTC which has a tweaked V8 engine capable of producing up to 445bhp at 8,750 RPM. This car uses a sequencial gearbox with six speeds and has added wings for increased downforce. The 360GTC is a development from the earlier Ferrari 360 GT racer.
Dry weight for this car is a mere 2425 pounds, which is a large reduction on the Spider and Modena Car Evolution.

Ferrari 360 cockpit

Ferrari 360 Spider
Engine90 degree V8 engine
3,586cc, 400bhp
Top SpeedOver 180mph
Weight1350 KG 0-60 Time4.5 seconds
DriveRear wheel drive Wheelbase2600mm
TyresFront 215/45 ZR 18
Rear 275/40 ZR 18
Brakes330mm Discs front and rear

provenance of article http://www.modernCar

Vote Now!

Come on guys, visit and start casting your votes on your favorite NASCAR driver and watch them compete in the 2007 Nextel ALL-STAR CHALLENGE!

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Photoshoot For The Peugeot 308

New pictures arise on the web of the 2008 Peugeot 308 Hatchback caught undisguised in South Africa on a photoshoot.
This specific photo was taken through an office window. The Peugeot team were all over South Africa taking pictures of their Ford Focus fighter.
Although there are only photos of the front end undisguised, in France, Peugeot had a production ready 308 in their HQ undisguised and we all know what Peugeot/Citroen and Renault's security is like....rubbish the rear end was uncovered for the first time.
Peugeot will officially reveal the new 308 in autumn at the Frankfurt Motorshow with sales expected to start in 2008. Also in the pipeline will be a 308 SW, 308 Coupe-Cabriolet, 308 SW based SUV and a 308 based MPV with sales beginning in 2009.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Jeff Gordon's third pole this season

"After Jamie [McMurray] put up his lap," Hendrick Motorsports driver Jeff Gordon said, "I told my guys, 'Sorry. That's four-tenths. We don't have that much.'" Coming into the race in the 37th of the 50-entrant field, Gordon had every reason to believe so. "But we did," he added, with as much surprise as he admittedly felt in turning laps of 133.136 mph Thursday to take pole position from McMurray at the Phoenix International Raceway.

On board the No. 24 DuPont Chevrolet Impala SS, Gordon held off speed surges from perennial threats Denny Hamlin and Scott Riggs, putting him in front of the field in next week's �Desert Jewel� stage of the Nascar Nextel Cup Series. Saturday's one-mile Subway Fresh Fit 500 was Gordon's 59th career pole position, tying him with Darell Waltrip for fourth on the all-time best list.

"I've been on the pole here. We've been fast here. We've been consistent here. We've been everything but in victory lane here," said Gordon. "We're just going to work just as hard as we can�the same as we do everywhere and I'm going to try not to make the mistake we made last week because I felt like we had a good shot at winning last week in Texas and I blew that one.�

Odds, however, are against Gordon. In the 21 previous Desert Jewel race of the Nextel Cup, no pole sitter has gone on to win the race. More than tying with Waltrip on the all-time list, Gordon was set to make more history in the following Nextel stage.

"I was really surprised with the speed we got out of the car," said Gordon. "I've been a little skeptical on how these cars will run in traffic, but starting out front will definitely help."

Talking points

"Sort of like, implants for a track,"

--Nascar driver Dale Earnhardt Jr., speaking to reporters about the $50,000 repair job of a 200-foot section of the Texas Motor Speedway.