Saturday, October 2, 2010

Car colour popularity

Webb maintains that conservative colors will continue to dominate the car market, however predicts that there may be an increasing trend towards more radical designs, such as greens, pinks and hue-shifting finishes (which change color depending on the angle the paint is viewed). Preferences related with road safety will also become important, since both drivers and insurance companies will prefer colors that are easy to see to avoid crashes.
Chris Webb, the exterior color and trend designer for GM North America, suggests that silver is the most popular color as light reflects off it, accentuating the architectural design, and that it hides dirt and has a higher resale price (10% higher than white cars, a reason many UK police agencies made the switch from white to silver). There is evidence, however, that the popularity of silver is decreasing.
It is alleged that black, white and gray also dominate the list many cars are bought straight off dealership and these colors are the ones most oft purchased by dealers (they provide security as they are more likely to sell). These neutral colors are also often the choice for rental fleets.

Future Car Trends

The word automobile comes, via the French automobile, from the Ancient Greek word (autós, "self") and the Latin mobilis ("movable"); meaning a vehicle that moves itself, rather than being pulled or pushed by a separate animal or another vehicle. The alternative name car is believed to originate from the Latin word carrus or carrum ("wheeled vehicle"), or the Middle English word carre ("cart") (from Old North French), or from the Gaulish word karros (a Gallic Chariot)
An automobile powered by his own four-stroke cycle gasoline engine was built in Mannheim, Germany by Karl Benz in 1885, and granted a patent in January of the following year under the auspices of his major company, Benz & Cie., which was founded in 1883. It was an integral design, without the adaptation of other existing components, and included several new technological elements to create a new concept. He began to sell his production vehicles in 1888.
patent application expired because the vehicle was never built. After a delay of sixteen years and a series of attachments to his application, on November 5, 1895, Selden was granted a United States patent (U.S. Patent 549,160) for a two-stroke automobile engine, which hindered, more than encouraged, development of automobiles in the United States. His patent was challenged by Henry Ford and others, and overturned in 1911.

A Woman’s Point of View: The Secret to Keeping What You Have.

by Colette Cooley, Cars for Keeps Office Manager

In the automotive world these days it is becoming trendy to fix up and keep the car you have. It is the “politically correct” thing to do in today’s economy and trend towards sustainability. This is a great trend in theory, but let’s face it girls, we who change our clothes three and four times a day find it goes against our nature to not change our car every year or so. Fess up ladies, who of you have never bought those ‘must have’, hot new shoes only to get them home, taken them out of the box, thought to yourself ‘what was I thinking’, and tossed them in the Goodwill bag. Hmmm?

Oddly enough, I am different about my car. Once I find a car I really like, I will drive it until it falls apart on the road – no matter how much I want all those new gadgets that are in the newer models. My SUV is going on fourteen years old and is still running strong. The secret is to add new features to your old car. GPS devices like Garmin and bluetooth adapter kits are not that expensive, they're easy to install and hey - they work.

I will tell you another secret – regular maintenance. At Cars For Keeps our mechanics give you a strong once over inspection every time you have an oil change. Just like maintaining good health for the body, an early diagnosis to any problem your car may have results in an easier, and cheaper, fix before the first problem causes a second and third problem. So, dust off that old faithful car, give it regular oil changes, keep those fluids fresh, come to us quickly when you hear a noise and maintain those tires with the right air pressure. Your pocketbook will thank you, and who knows, maybe you will find another pair of ‘must have’ shoes.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Ferrari 575M Maranello

Ferrari 575M Maranello is a two-seat, two-door, grand tourer built by Ferrari. Launched in 2002, it is essentially an updated 550 Maranello featuring minor styling changes from Pininfarina. The 575M was replaced by the 599 GTB in the first half of 2006.
Updates from the 550 include a renewed interior, but with substantial improvements mechanically, including bigger brake discs, a larger and more powerful engine, a different weight distribution, refined aerodynamics and fluid-dynamics and an adaptive suspension set-up (the four independent suspensions are also controlled by the gearbox, to minimize pitch throughout the 200-milliseconds shift time). Two six-speed transmissions are available, a conventional manual gearbox and, for the first time on a Ferrari V12, Magneti Marelli's semi-automatic (Electrohydraulic manual) 'F1' gearbox. The model number refers to total engine displacement in litres, whilst the 'M' is an abbreviation of 'modificato' or 'modified'.
For 2005, the company developed a new GTC handling package and Superamerica version (a limited run of 559 Retractable hardtop variants of the coupe), along with raising the power from 515 PS (379 kW; 508 hp) to 540 PS (400 kW; 530 hp).

BMW 3 Series "E36"

BMW E36 is the third generation of the 3 Series compact executive cars produced by BMW. It was introduced in late 1990 (as a 1991 model) for Europe and in late 1991 (as a 1992 model) for US and Canada. It was the successor to the E30 3 Series and was eventually replaced by the E46 3 Series in 1998, though E36 coupes were still produced for the 1999 model year. The E36 experienced enormous success in the market. It laid strong foundations for the success that the BMW E46 experienced in subsequent years.
Also known as the "dolphin shape", the E36 was sold from 1991 through 1999. All E36 saloons, coupes, and station wagons employed the "Z-axle" multilink suspension in the rear which had been proven in the Z1. The hatchback body style, known as the E36/5 or BMW Compact, was identical to the regular E36 from front bumper to A-pillar. In order to save space due to its truncated rear end, the Compact used a rear semi-trailing arm suspension based on the old E30 (also found in the Z3 and M Coupe), instead of the Z-Axle Multilink employed in all other E36's.
In the United States, the four-door E36 were on sale by fall 1991, while the E30 coupes were retained until well into 1992 when they were replaced by E36 coupes. The E36 convertible was delayed until 1994.
The hatchback body style, known as the BMW Compact, was introduced in 1995 starting with the 318ti, being very popular in Europe but largely unsuccessful in North America. The "Touring" station wagon was sold in Europe from 1995, but was not available in the United States.
DOHC engines were used across the range (except in entry level models, see table below), with VANOS variable valve timing introduced in 1993. The 2.5 L M50B25 used in the 325i models was replaced in 1996 with the 2.8 L M52B28, creating the 328 line. Another 2.5 L I6 engine, the M52B25, was reintroduced for 1998 but badged as the 323i rather than 325i.

Ford Mustang 1

The original Ford Mustang was a product of the Fairlane Group, a committee of Ford managers led by Lee Iacocca. The Fairlane Group worked on new product needs and, in the summer of 1962, the Group laid out the framework of a new sports car to counter the success of GM's Corvair Monza sports coupe. Designer Gene Bordinat envisioned a low-cost sports car that would combine roadability, performance, and appearance in a radical layout. A 90 in (2286 mm) wheelbase, 48 in (1219 mm) front and a 49 in (1245 mm) rear track, width of 61 in (1549 mm) with an overall length of 154.3 in (3919 mm) were the working dimensions. The body skin was a one-piece unit that was riveted to a space frame. To increase rigidity, the seats were part of the body. The driver could adjust the steering column and clutch/brake/accelerator pedals.
Roy Lunn was put charge of building the car as he brought racing-car design experience and together with his engineering really brought the concept to life.[2] An "off-the shelf" German Ford Cardinal 1500 cc 60 degree V-4 powered the Mustang I. It was mounted in a power pack of engine and 4-speed transmission in a common housing with an axle and conventional clutch. Lead designer John Najjar favored a mid-engined configuration, cooled through two separate radiators on the sides of the car. It was said that Najjar also proposed the name "Mustang" for the concept vehicle. As an aviation enthusiast, he was familiar with the North American P-51 Mustang fighter and saw some design similarities in the diminutive but sleek profile of the new sports car.
Najjar was an aviation enthusiast who saw the sleek lines of the original Ford Mustang I concept car as similar to that of the P-51 Mustang. After public relations and the legal department vetted the project name (they particularly liked the connection to the wild horse of the same name), the name continued onto the Mustang II showcar and later was applied to the production version of the Ford Mustang. However, the discovery of Phil Clark's original diaries and from his time with Eugene Bordinat, along with confirmation from Ford, now tells us that Phil Clark was the artist under Bordinat that drew original Mid-Engine Designs that later made it up to the executives and met their approval for Mustang I. Bordinat is also known for his design of the 1963 Mustang II prototype.
The Mustang name was kept under wraps by the Code Name "Allegro" for the entire project. Allegro was a musical term and Clark and all of the designers he worked with were involved with various musical Instruments. This gave the young group who originally were with GM a way to speak about the Mustang project in a code that no one to this day can decipher except for the original designers. Phil Clark suggested the Mustang Name to the executives after traveling from his hometown in Nashville, Tennessee to The Art School of Design in Passedena, California where he passed the wild Mustangs in Nevada and was hooked with their beauty.
Clark Graduating with honors as a designer and stylist from Art School with a double Major in Art Transportation and Design. Clark had been drawing the Mustang design in variation for years before the final car was produced. His drawing of the Mustang Coupe, or Fastback can be seen signed by him, in the Spring 1963 MotorBook Magazine. Note: Clark was with Avco Aviation where his father was the Vice President of Avco and his Father in Law was also a Machinist with Avco Aviation. Clark had been an engineer for Avco before he became ill with Urological issues and decided that Transportation Design would be a better fit for his health. Clark died at 32 from an ulcer, but to this day is best known for his design of the Mustang Running Horse emblem.

Eric Medlen And His Mustang

Eric Medlen (August 13, 1973, Oakdale, CA March 23, 2007, Gainesville, Florida), son of John and Mary (Mimi) Medlen and brother of Eryn Medlen, was an NHRA Fuel Funny Car driver. Medlen drove for John Force Racing in 2004, 2005 and 2006, campaigning in the Castrol Syntec Ford Mustang Fuel Funny Car, and in 2007, campaigning in the Auto Club/Pleasant Holiday Ford Mustang Fuel Funny Car. He had a total of 6 career wins. His first win came during his Rookie season in 2004 at Brainerd International Raceway.
He worked as a mechanic for John Force and past teammate Tony Pedregon for 8 years until Pedregon left to join his brother Cruz's race team. Medlen was moved into Pedregon's Castrol Syntec-sponsored car. In 2004, he was a top contender for the NHRA Road to the Future Funny Car Rookie of the Year. He followed with 3 wins in 2005 and 2 wins in 2006. Each year he raced, he placed in the top five or higher in NHRA Championship Points. Prior to 2004, his fastest elapsed time was 4.681 seconds. His fastest speed was 328.54 MPH. He had 8 #1 qualifiers and a 94-65 win-loss record.
Medlen was a champion calf roper in high school and considered a career as a professional team roper with his partner and mentor, World Champion Team Roper Gerald Camarillo. He also loved to build custom motorcycles and paint his race helmets. His father John Medlen was his crew chief.

Giugiaro Ford Mustang

Fabrizio Giugiaro, the styling director of Italdesign, went to the Ford Motor Company to design a future concept inspired by the fifth generation Ford Mustang. This follows the pattern of Giorgetto Giugiaro, who was instrumental in designing the 1965 Bertone Mustang, as well as the Chevrolet Corvette Moray. It is the younger automobile designer's interpretation of European styling on the 2005 version of the American pony car.
Italdesign changed the styling and design of both the interior as well as the exterior. The final concept of the vehicle is more compact and tapered with a smaller rear overhang, but is wider by 30 mm (1.2 in) at the front, and by 80 mm (3.1 in) at the rear. A single pane forms the windshield as well as the roof, which is made from a type of crystal that filters out all UV rays, yet does not polarize visible light. The doors are touch operated and when opened raise from the A-pillar at a 45 degree angle, similar to the classic Lamborghini's scissor doors. Inside, the interior is trimmed with aluminum and leather. The dashboard, door panels, dials and knobs, instrument cluster, as well as gear lever have been completely redesigned. The car also utilizes reverse cameras on both doors in place of conventional side view mirrors. New periscope-style air conditioning vents, along with a new seat trim, harkens to the pony car’s name with furred horse hides.
The Giugiaro Mustang is powered by the 4.6 L V8 from the Mustang GT, but receives additional power from a twin-screw supercharger. The engine is tuned by Italdesign, fitted with fuel injectors from the Ford GT, and has a larger air intake with 95 mm (3.7 in) mass air meter and a conical air filter. Exhaust flow is improved using an X-pipe and Ford Racing mufflers. The engine produces over 500 hp (373 kW) at 11 psi (0.8 bar) of boost from the supercharger. The Giugiaro Mustang is equipped with a custom Ford Racing handling package, featuring new shock absorbers, lower springs, and thicker sway bars. These changes also lower the ride height by 1.5 inches (38 mm).

BMW Sports Activity Series

sports activity vehicle and coupe series is a marketing description by BMW to describe a line of vehicles that traditionally were in the crossover Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV) class.
Unlike traditional SUVs which are derived from the body-on-frame construction of light trucks, vehicles in the sports activity family are crossovers that are based upon unibody car platforms. BMW emphasized their sports-car like on-road ability, helping to distinguish this new series from others. The sports activity nomenclatures are indicative of the reality that for the most part, the vehicles are more "activity" based than "utility". The sports activity family of BMW automobiles are grouped by their X-series branding.
The first official BMW to carry to sports activity series nomenclature was the 1999 BMW X5 as a Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV) which debuted at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit
BMW expanded the sports activity series with the introduction of the X6 Sports Activity Coupe (SAC). BMW described the coupe nomenclature as result of combining the sporting elegance of a BMW coupe with the striking DNA of BMW X and the vision of a BMW sedan. This third member of the sports activity series of vehicles also served as a first for BMW, their first official crossover vehicle.

BMW Concept 5 Series Gran Turismo

BMW 5 Concept Series Gran Turismo was first displayed by BMW in 2009 at the Geneva Motor Show as a concept car.[1] It is the first production-destined rendition for BMW's Progressive Activity Sedan (PAS) series of cars and based on the F07 automobile platform. The 5 GT is to serve as a combination of a sport sedan, an SUV, and a Gran Turismo.
It has dimensions mimicking in length the 7 Series, a height and trunk space slightly more than the 5 Series wagon, and headroom comparable to the BMW X5. The concept was equipped with individual rear seats separated by the center console, whereas the production model will have 5 seats.
The production version is expected to launch as a 2010 model, with an expected price between $65,000 and $80,000, during the fourth quarter of 2009. The 535i and 535i xDrive with the 3L twin-turbocharged direct injected double-VANOS inline six produce 300 HP. If production is approved for it, there may also be a 535d with the 335d's 3L twin-turbocharged double-VANOS diesel inline six engine with 265 horsepower. Also, the range topping model, the 550i GT boasts the 400HP 4.4L twin-turbocharged (twin scroll turbochargers) V8 with direct fuel injection.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

New York International Auto Show

New York International Auto Show is an annual auto show held in New York City in late March or early April. It is usually held at the Jacob Javits Convention Center.
It usually opens on or just before Easter weekend and closes on the first Sunday after Easter.
The show has been held annually since 1900. The show was held at the New York Coliseum from 1956 to 1987 when the show moved to the Javits Center.
Before the show opens every year, several auto companies debut new production and concept vehicles for the press. In addition, the Greater New York Auto Dealers Association (GNYADA) and the International Motor Press Association (IMPA) host corporate meetings and events.

Suzuki Esteem

Suzuki Esteem is an export nameplate for the Suzuki Cultus Crescent — also marketed in Europe, Australia and many Asian countries as the Suzuki Baleno — manufactured by Suzuki Motor Corporation. In India, it was manufactured by Maruti Suzuki and sold as the Maruti Baleno.
The Esteem was introduced in the global market in the first half of 1995 as Suzuki's first attempt in the compact segment, at the time dominated by European cars such as the Volkswagen Golf and Opel Astra, and Japanese models such as the Nissan Sunny/Sentra and Toyota Corolla. As a North American replacement for the Suzuki Swift sedan (the 3-door hatchback remained after it was redesigned in 1995), it was built on a slightly stretched Suzuki Cultus platform for improved cabin room, but otherwise sharing most of internal components with the smaller model  and marketed as a distinct model.
The Esteem/Baleno was initially available as a 3-door hatchback and 4-door sedan, with 1.3 L (hatch only) and 1.6 L engines, with power ranging from 85 to 99 PS (63 to 73 kW; 84 to 98 hp). In 1996, the lineup was extended with the Esteem Wagon (Baleno Break in most European markets and Baleno Altura in India), Suzuki's first station wagon, also with the same 1.6 L, which also received optional 4WD in the two larger body variants.
Suzuki restyled the Esteem/Baleno in 1999. The car was given a new frontend, with a rounder grille and new headlights, and the engine lineup was expanded to include Suzuki's J18A chain-driven DOHC that was fitted to the sedan and wagon. In North America, the Esteem 1.8 Station Wagon completely replaced the Esteem 1.6, but in most markets the 1.8 sedan became the sports model. In some European markets, the 1.8 L I4 was installed in the hatchback and sold as the limited edition Baleno GTi. Europe also gained a Diesel version, with a 75 PS (55 kW; 74 hp) XUD engine supplied by Peugeot.
The Esteem/Baleno was replaced in most markets by the new Aerio/Liana, which was launched in 2001. It was pulled from the market in Europe and North American in 2002, after one year of overlapping. The car remained available in many developing countries, including India and Southeast Asia, where it was sold until 2007, when production stopped at the Maruti factory, with the assembly line giving way to the SX4 Sedan.

Suzuki Alto

Suzuki Alto is a small car (kei car) designed by Suzuki. Its selling points include low price and good fuel economy. The model was introduced in 1979 and has been built in many countries worldwide.
Until the introduction of the K10 Alto, it was powered by a three-cylinder 796 cc gasoline engine with 4 valves per cylinder, MPFI and a 32bit ECM. All models have a five-speed manual transmission. There also used to be a VX/VXi model with a 4-cylinder 1,061 cc engine (64 bhp/80 Nm torque) launched in April 2001. This has now been discontinued, although it is still sold in certain European countries. The VX model also featured a tachometer not found in lesser Altos.

Honda Jazz

Honda Jazz nameplate has been used by Honda of Japan to denote several different motorized vehicles since 1982:
* A 50 cc motorcycle introduced in 1986. Such a scooter (CHF50) still exists, and is currently on sale in Canada. The two models bear no relations to each other. * The Japanese-market name for the badge-engineered version of the Isuzu Mu ( Isuzu Amigo ) short wheelbase version, known elsewhere as the Opel Frontera, Holden Frontera, or Vauxhall Frontera. * The European-market name for the Honda City Mk I from 1982 to 1986, as City was already trademarked by Opel. * A five-door hatchback automobile introduced in June 2001. The vehicle is known as the Fit in Japan, China, as well as in both North and South America. It is called the Jazz in Europe, Oceania, the Middle East, South East Asia, India and Africa.

Chevrolet Corvette

Chevrolet Corvette is sports car produced by the Chevrolet division of General Motors. The first model was designed by Harley Earl and introduced at the GM Motorama in 1953. Myron Scott is credited for naming the car after the Corvette, a small, maneuverable warship. It has been produced in six generations in coupe, convertible and t-top coupe body styles. Originally built in Flint, Michigan and St. Louis, Missouri, the Corvette is currently built in Bowling Green, Kentucky and is the official sports car of the Commonwealth of Kentucky. The National Corvette Museum documents the car's worldwide history and hosts the annual "National Corvette Homecoming". The Auto Editors of Consumer Guide stated: "Plenty of sports cars would come and go over the course of the last five decades; the Corvette not only survived, but thrived, outlasting and out-pacing the competition." In 2003, the Corvette became the first and only American sports car to celebrate its 50th anniversary.
Corvette was born of the post-war sports-car boom, an optimistic time when nearly anything seemed possible, including the world's largest automaker building a two-seat "image" car. But despite the Corvette's initial impact as a sensational show car, the first production model was dismissed as more poseur than performer, and the so-called "plastic bathtub" was nearly axed from the Chevrolet lineup. Corvette came into its own, both on the road and at the racetrack, during the space-age Sixties. It flexed its muscle during the subsequently turbulent years of anti-war protests, political scandals, and civil unrest. It survived an onslaught of adversity throughout the Seventies. And while it welcomed the Eighties with its portfolio secure, the car's fortunes plummeted over the course of the ensuing decade.
Again turning the tide, Chevy's legendary sports car was reborn in the late Nineties as a technologically advanced performance machine for the new millennium, and it enjoyed a well-earned resurgence in popularity. Then, the Corvette engineers unleashed the C6, the most precise and refined Corvette yet. They soon topped themselves with the next-generation Z06, a 500-horsepower track-bred Corvette that upped performance to new heights.

Sports Car International

Sports Car International (SCI) was an automobile magazine in the United States published by Ross Periodicals Inc. that was focused on sports cars. The magazine was published from 1986 to 2008. Its business offices were located in Novato, California.
The magazine was unabashedly enthusiast-oriented, assuming a good knowledge of sports cars, racing and automotive history. In the 1990s, Jay Lamm served as editor;[3] Lamm had worked at other publications, including Autoweek, and had written books on cars like the Mazda Miata. In 1994, SCI became the first magazine publication to go all-digital in its printing process.[4] In 2006, Erik Gustafson served as editor, and upgraded the publication's layout, editorial style, and format to compete directly with rival top automotive publications.
The magazine ceased publication with the November 2008 edition due to cost factors such as a lack of advertising revenue. The publisher stated that all subscribers would ride out their subscription with Excellence, a magazine focused on Porsche automobiles. For those who already have subscriptions to Excellence and SCI, Forza, a Ferrari magazine would be the substitute.

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