Saturday, July 10, 2010

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Friday, July 9, 2010

Historical body styles

Historical body styles

Most early body styles were derived from those available in horse-drawn carriages and used the coachbuilding terms for them, although often their application in the automobile differed from the carriage use. Other types were soon invented, and either used modifications of earlier terminology or wholly new terms to describe them. Some of these terms are occasionally used in modern model designations, but almost always inaccurately with respect to their historical meaning (e.g. Lincoln Town Car, Volkswagen Phaeton). Fifteen of them were chosen as standards by the SAE in 1922.[1]

Generally equivalent to a sedan, but more likely to have closed rear quarters and sometimes more luxuriously trimmed.
Bubble car
Inexpensive, extremely small footprint vehicles, manufactured in Europe's depressed post-World War II economy. Modern descendants are the kei car and city car.
Close-coupled sedan
A four-windowed sedan with a trunk that from front to rear was almost as thin as an upright suitcase. The rear-seat passengers sat a little bit forward of the differential. Ford Motor Company called its version a "Victoria" in the 1930s.
Coupé convertible
A coupé with a convertible top, naturally. Fully enclosed with the top up and side windows up. Called a drophead coupé in the United Kingdom.
Drophead coupe
As a coupé, but with a full convertible top. British terminology, and dropping out of use for most modern cars, though luxury British makes occasionally still use it. Compare American use of coupe convertible; contrast with fixed-head coupé.
Fixed-head coupé
British term for a standard coupé with a fixed solid roof, as opposed to a drophead coupé. In cases where the rear seats are very small and not intended for regular use these are sometimes called a 2+2.
A fixed-roof car with a mostly-enclosed cabin in front and a high-mounted open drivers seat in the rear.
In automobiles, generally (inaccurately) synonymous with landaulet; also used for a car with a simulated folding top and false landau bars. This latter usage is still current.
Landaulet (Landaulette)
A car in which there is a roof over the front seats and the rear doors (possibly with a center row of seats) but with a folding convertible roof over the rear quarters.
An open car, normally describing a double or triple-row phaeton. There is often a folding fabric top but no side weather protection. Early Phaetons had a high-mounted rear seat for the driver. The modern VW Phaeton derives its name, but nothing else, from this style.
Roadster utility (or Roadster ute)
A car combining an open-topped roadster body with a rear cargo bed.[2]
Roi des Belges
Named after King Leopold II of Belgium who ordered the first example. A large open car with high built seats and the rear seat usually set higher than the front seat. Also know more rarely as a Tulip Phaeton because of the side profile of the rear of the car resembling the shape of a tulip flower head..
A popular open light body style, normally with a single bench seat but sometimes with a rear tonneau. Most cars in the first decade of the 20th century were either runabouts or touring cars.
A car with a single bench seat mounted at the center, a folding cloth top, and only a buckboard at the front.
A car in which the rear compartment passengers enter through a rear, rather than side, door. Often completely open (no top).
Basically a convertible, with low side panels and doors.
An open car with four or five seats, usually equipped with a folding roof and side curtains.[3]
Touring car
A larger car, normally with two rows of seats (with a tonneau) and a large compartment at the front.
Town brougham
Equivalent to a town car, but, as with the brougham, more likely to have closed rear quarters.
Town car
A car in which the front seats were open and the rear compartment closed, normally with a removable top to cover the front chauffeur's compartment. The modern Lincoln Town Car derives its name, but nothing else, from this style.
Town landaulet, Town landau
Combining the town car and landaulet, this car is open over the driver's compartment, closed over the rear doors, and with an opening convertible top over the rear quarters.

Pillared Hardtop

Pillared Hardtop

This name was used by Ford in the 1970s to describe its bodies which had frameless door glass like a hardtop, but retained a center pillar like a sedan. The 1972-1976 Torino sedans and wagons were of this type, as were the 1975-1979 Lincoln Town Cars. When GM introduced a similar style on their intermediates for 1973–1977, they called the two-doors Colonnade Hardtop Coupe and the four-doors, in a triumph of ad agency gibberish, Colonnade Hardtop Sedan. The 1976 Buick Century sedan used this configuration. Before Ford introduced its "Pillared Hardtops" in the early seventies, GM had the same body style available on its "C" body cars (Buick Electra 225, Oldsmobile 98 and Cadillacs) from 1965 to 1970.
GM called them "semi-thin pillar sedans" as they had a slightly larger center pillars than other GM sedans (that were called "thin pillar sedans") but they had no window frames like the "thin pillar sedans" had.

Car Construction

Car Construction

There are three main types of automotive bodywork:

* The first automobiles were designs adapted in large part from horse-drawn carriages, and had body-on-frame construction with a wooden frame and wooden or metal body panels. Wooden-framed motor vehicles remain in production to this day, with many of the cars made by the Morgan Motor Company still having wooden structures underlying their bodywork.
* A steel chassis or ladder frame replaced the wooden frame. This form of body-on-frame construction is still common for commercial vehicles.
* Monocoque, or unibody construction, in which the "chassis" is part of, and integrated with the metal body. It provides support to all the mechanical components, as well as protection for the vehicle occupants. Although there is no separate complete frame or chassis, many monocoque/unibody designs now often include subframes. Steel monocoque construction is now the most common form of car bodywork, although aluminum and carbon fiber may also be used.
Less common types include tube frame and space frame designs used for high-performance cars. There have also been various hybrids, for example the Volkswagen Beetle had a chassis, consisting of the floor pan, door sills and central tunnel, but this chassis relied on the stiffening provided by the bodywork, a technique sometimes called semi-monocoque construction.

Non-structural body panels have been made of wood, steel, aluminum, fiberglass and several more exotic materials.

Car body style

Car body style

Cars can come in a large variety of different body styles. Some are still in production, while others are of historical interest only. These styles are largely (though not completely) independent of a car's classification in terms of price, size and intended broad market; the same car model might be available in multiple body styles (or model ranges). For some of the following terms, especially relating to four-wheel drive / SUV models and minivan / MPV models, the distinction between body style and classification is particularly narrow.

Please note that while each body style has a historical and technical definition, in common usage such definitions are often blurred. Over time, the common usage of each term evolves. For example, people often call 4-passenger sport coupés a "sports car", while purists will insist that a sports car by definition is limited to two-place vehicles.



MUMBAI The Renault-Nissan alliance said Thursday it has signed an agreement with Indian automaker Bajaj Auto to make an ultra-low cost car to be sold in India and other emerging markets.

The car, scheduled for a launch in 2012 plans to rival the world's cheapest car -- the Nano -- being produced by India's leading vehicle maker Tata Motors.

The design, engineering, sourcing and manufacturing of the unnamed new model will be handled by Bajaj Auto, the country's leading motorbike and rickshaw maker.

Marketing and selling will be done by the Renault-Nissan alliance.

Bajaj Auto, which unveiled a snubnosed prototype of the car in 2008, has a 50 percent stake in the venture while Renault and Nissan have 25 percent each.

"The main structure of the deal announced last November remains unchanged," a Bajaj Auto spokesman said on Thursday.

The car is likely to hit the road in 2012 and may be priced at 2,500 dollars (117,500 rupees).

The Nano costs between 2,660 and 3,900 dollars across dealer showrooms but can be bought from the factory gates at the 100,000 rupee (2,130 dollar) price tag.
Car sales have been robust in Asia's third-largest automobile market in recent months, driven by new models, government stimulus efforts and generally rising incomes.

India is emerging as a popular destination for foreign auto makers, as growth in western developed markets has dwindled in recent years.

Small car sales are the highest and represent more than two-thirds of India's market, driven by rising middle-class incomes.

Japanese car maker Nissan is to launch its Micra small car next week in capital New Delhi, which is being produced from a plant in the south co-owned with Renault.
In April, Renault pulled out of a joint venture with Indian car manufacturer Mahindra and Mahindra which produced its first car for the growing South Asian market, the Logan.

Mansory Porsche Panamera

Mansory Porsche Panamera

Mansory awakens the Panamera’s monster V-8.

The first ever production sedan in Porsche’s history combines both sport and luxury for a satisfying driving experience. But, for customers that are searching for even more performance, Mansory has unveiled a new Power Pack for the Panamera Turbo that unleashes the fury from the twin-turbocharged V-8.

In stock form the Panamera Turbo is no slouch, pumping out 500 horsepower from the boosted 4.8-liter engine. Mansory takes it a BIG step further by adding 180 horses with some go fast goodies. By installing larger turbochargers, a stainless steel sport exhaust, and a retuned engine management system, Mansory was able to create a hellish 680 hp (507 kW), sending the sedan to 62 in just 4.0 seconds and pushing the top speed to 204 mph – sixteen miles per hour faster than stock. Of course with an engine making all that power it had to look nice, so Mansory dressed the engine up in carbon fiber and Mansory logos, and stamped another logo on both exhaust manifolds for good measure.

To handle the monster that Mansory created, a number of high-strength polyurethane and Prepreg-Autoclav-Carbon aerodynamic components were added to make sure the Panamera would stay composed at high speeds. The new front bumper features gaping air intakes and integrated LED daytime running lights. To shed some weight, Mansory as installed a carbon fiber hood with a Mansory logo to replace the Porsche crest. Along both sides of the Panamera, the fenders have been widened and side skirts have been added to produce a more muscular appearance. The rear sports a wicked dual center exhaust integrated into a large carbon diffuser. Customers can opt to keep the stock rear spoiler and add carbon fiber accents, or install a large carbon fiber rear spoiler for increased downforce.
Complimenting the bold exterior design of the Panamera are new wheels specially designed for Porsche. Measuring 22 x 9 at the front and 22 x 10 at the rear, the lightweight forged wheels feature a five-spoke turbine design and are shod in 265/30 ZR 22 front and 295/25 ZR 22 rear Dunlop SP SportMaxx rubber for uncompromising grip.

Inside the Panamera can be made as flamboyant as the exterior with thorough refinements. Mansory offers a full leather interior available in an array of custom colors that can be complimented by precious woods, varnish, or carbon fiber. For an enhanced driving experience, Mansory can install a sports steering wheel and brushed aluminum pedals.

The Porsche Panamera Power Pack from Mansory is currently available. Customers can choose to transform their Panamera into a unique blue and yellow eye-catcher as pictured, or create their own work of art.

Sportec SPR1R Porsche 911 Turbo

Sportec SPR1R Porsche 911 Turbo

The folks at Sportec have announced an upgrade to the SPR1 M that they will debut at the Salon Privé Motor Show in London. Badge the SPR1R the model now features carbon / Kelvar body panels, carbon fiber under floor, an active suspension, a roll cage and carbon ceramic brakes. With all those modifications, the model now weighs around 110 pounds less than the SPR1 M.

Powering the Sportec SPR1R is a 3.6L bi-turbo making 846-hp and 642 lb-ft of torque. That allows it to run from 0-62 mph in 3 seconds, 0-124 mph in 8.6 seconds and 0-186 mph in 18.9 seconds. Top speed comes in at an eye-watering 236 mph.

Press Release:

Sportec returns to salon prive event with improved sprir supercar

Having stunned the motoring press and Salon Privé show goers last year with the UK premier of the SPR1, SPORTEC is set to debut a new, faster, lighter and improved version of the Swiss built supercar at this year’s event – the SPR1R.

Conceived, designed and constructed in Switzerland by SPORTEC’s technical team, the new version of the SPR1 offers unrivalled supercar performance and exclusivity, carrying over the 858PS bi-turbo, 3.6-litre, 24-valve, flat six T80M engine and permanent four wheel drive of the previous version.



Carbon fiber is one of those materials that, we believe, should be included in the production of all cars, but given that we can’t exactly find the material at the local Costco, we know that using carbon fiber will shoot up price tags for all vehicles, which isn’t exactly a priority for most auto brands.

That being said, tuning houses have always had an affinity for carbon fiber and, much to our approval, Akrym is putting some on the new BMW M3 Coupe with their new AeroRace bodykit. The California-based tuning firm has created a new carbon fiber boot that comes with an integrated spoiler and a new hood with carbon fiber air vents.

Needless to say, the package is a nice inclusion to anybody with a BMW M3 Coupe, but like we said, it won’t come cheap. The package is available from ’Pyspeed’ with a price tag of $1,999 for the single-side carbon hood - adding another $500 bones to make it double - and another $1,249 for the single-side carbon boot with an option for the double at an additional cost of $450.

So, if anyone has money to burn, we highly suggest scooping up these packages. They’re not only aesthetically-pleasing, but the performance upgrades will be more than worth it too.

BMW Frozen Gray M3 Coupe

BMW Frozen Gray M3 Coupe

Nearing the 25th anniversary of the original BMW M3, BMW North America today announced a production run of thirty identically-equipped 2011 Frozen Gray M3 Coupes for the United States only. The sports car features a special matte-gray paint with a deep metallic luster. Fox Red / Black bi-color Novillo leather interior is also standard. It will be the first and only opportunity to obtain Frozen Gray Metallic exterior paint on the M3 for the 2011 model year in the United States.

BMW M enthusiasts will be able to reserve a 2011 Frozen Gray M3 Coupe by dialing 1-800-245-4269 no earlier than 11:30AM Eastern Time (8:30AM Pacific) on Monday, June 21, 2010. The first 2011 Frozen Gray M3 Coupes will become available for delivery in late June 2010 through Authorized BMW Centers, and the production run will be completed by the end of July 2010.

Each 2011 Frozen Gray M3 Coupe will be powered by the 4.0 liter, 414 horsepower M V8 and equipped with BMW’s M Double Clutch Transmission (M DCT). Also specified is the new M3 Competition Package, which adds a set of 19 inch wheels and other upgrades. Additionally, each purchase of the 2011 Frozen Gray M3 Coupe will include a one-day enrollment at the BMW Performance Driving School in Spartanburg, South Carolina.

The complete equipment list includes BMW Individual Frozen Gray Metallic exterior paint, BMW Individual bi-color (Fox Red with Black) Novillo Leather interior, M DCT Transmission, Competition Package, Electronic Damping Control, 19 inch light-alloy wheels, lowered suspension, sport mapping for EDC and DSC, Premium package, power folding mirrors, universal garage door opener, digital compass mirror, BMW Assist with Bluetooth, Novillo leather, carbon leather trim, Technology package, M Drive system, comfort access system, navigation system, voice command system, real time traffic information system, heated front seats, rear park distance control, enhanced premium sound system, satellite radio with 1-year subscription, iPod and USB adaptor.

BMW 335is World Debut

BMW 335is World Debut

Today at the 2010 New York Auto Show, BMW has unveiled the all-new 335is. The E92 and E93 335is are the most powerful of standard 3 Series BMWs. The ’s’ typically meaning the most sporting of possibilities of the current model range for BMW.

The 2011 BMW 335is is powered by the same award winning N54 inline-6 3.0-liter twin-turbo motor that comes standard in the 335i, although the motor is now enhanced…ever so slightly. It comes packing 320hp at 5,900 rpm and 332lb-ft of torque is available from 1,500-5,000 rpm. The engineers have tweaked the twin-turbo 3-liter motor to have an overboost function that increases torque to 370lb-ft. The overboost function comes into play at higher engine speeds and gears.

BMW has fitted a sport exhaust system that has a deeper “rumble” at low speeds and rpm. This is to also help the driver feel more passionate and comfortable with their purchase with the windows and/or top down, depending on which model you get. The exhaust, as would be expected, helps to minimize the restriction of exhaust gas flow.

For the first time ever, the 335is will come with BMW’s heralded 7-speed double-clutch transmission, or DCT, with launch control, as an option over the standard 6-speed manual transmission. BMW claims a 5.0 second time to 60 with the optional DCT and launch control, while the manual coupe will take 5.1 seconds. The E93 is not far behind, with a 5.2 second 0-60 time with the DCT or the 6-speed manual.

To help aid miles per gallon and top speed, BMW has lowered the Cd (drag coefficient)to 0.30 for the E92 335is and just 0.31 for the E93 335is. That’s pretty impressive for pretty much any car out there.

The 335is comes with an updated front fascia, wider air intakes to feed more air. The fog lams have moved more to the sides to add more air openings. To use the extra air properly, BMW has fitted an additional radiator behind the left-front air intake, along with a more powerful electric cooling fan. An oil cooling pan has been added opposite of the second radiator, as well. The engine mounts that hold the 335i in place well enough are gone for even stronger units on the 335is, to ensure maximum performance under the heavier loads and conditions that the ‘is’ can cope with.

BMW is outfitting the 335is with M aerodynamics, meaning new front and rear fascia and sideskirts. Uniquely, there is a new rear diffuser that has air strakes that control air flow and help reduce lift at the rear-end, along with 335is badging on the side fenders, just under the side turn signals, and the rear of decklid. High gloss black surrounds the kidney grill and the wing mirrors, as well as black Shadowline window trim. 18″ ferric grey alloy wheels are standard, with 19″ M alloy wheels being optional.

To keep with the 335is’ unique status, the interior has been modified to include, an M Sport steering wheel, sport seats, anthracite headliner, M door sills, M driver’s footrest, M gearshift knob, and stainless steel sport pedals. The instrument cluster features dials in dark grey with a 335is badge on the tachometer. The passenger side dashboard also features a 335is badge on the standard aluminum glacier silver dark trim.


BMW Rennwagen M3

BMW Rennwagen M3

When you look at the aftermarket aero kits available for the BMW E92 M3, you can see how they all start to look alike. First there was the AC Schnitzer front lip, then the very popular Vorsteiner lip and out of that design came a slew of variations of the same design featuring a slightly BMW Rennwagen M3. How uncreative is this.

But unlike what’s been done, copied and relabeled over and over again, Craftsman from Japan have come out with a couple of original looking designs for this outgoing model from Bavaria.

The new line is under the Rennwagen brand sold by Craftsman. Shown here is their BMW E92 M3 demo car. It’s been ordered in the Individual Dakar Yellow II delivered 4.5 months from the order date. They unveiled the car at SIS last month but have since then been making the show circuits like the recent AF Imp Super Carnival.
Headlighst are tinted for that mean look. Stance is courtesy of KW Clubsport

Here are some close up pics of this unique Carbon Fiber front lip that hugs the front fascia more than any other add-on lip in the market currently.

This M3 has the Akrapovic EVO exhaust system which supposedly have added an extra 20hp tested through their Dynapak dyno. Rear tails were also tinted to match the headlights.

Rear shot showing the carbon fiber add-on rear diffuser complete with fins on the outside of each exhausts and an upside down triangular LED rear fog right in the middle.

The car is riding low on blacked out 20″ Work Equip E05 wheels wrapped with Advan Sports rubber.


BMW Performance Aerodynamic Carbon Fiber

BMW Performance Aerodynamic Carbon Fiber

Press Release: BMW of North America has announced three BMW Performance aerodynamic accessories for the M3 Coupe, Sedan, and Convertible. The new rear deck lid spoiler, mirror caps, and front splitters are constructed of ultra-rigid carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) composite material, matching the standard CFRP roof panel of the M3 Coupe.

Each component is shaped based on advanced research conducted in one of BMW’s Munich-based wind tunnels. This ensures compatibility with the overall aerodynamic “signature” of the M3, serving to reduce lift and minimize drag. Such characteristics are appropriate to enhance the vehicle’s high-speed stability while maintaining fuel efficiency.

Like the CFRP roof panels on the M3 Coupe and M6 Coupe, BMW Performance components made of carbon fiber have been climate and durability tested during development to ensure long-term quality. Each component is finished in a special clear coat laminate to reflect ultraviolet radiation.

BMW Performance accessories feature a 2-year / unlimited mileage warranty. If installed before a customer takes delivery of a new M3, the BMW Performance accessories will share coverage of the 4-year / 50,000-mile New Vehicle Limited Warranty. The new BMW Performance aerodynamic accessories are going on sale this month at Authorized BMW Centers.

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