After its world debut at the Geneva Motor Show, Chevrolet debuted its 2014 Corvette Stingray convertible at the 2013 New York International Auto Show not too long ago.
The 2014 Chevroelt Corvette Stingray comes with the normal Stingray’s LT1 6.2L V8 good for 450hp and 450 lb-ft of torque. GM also boasted that the new 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray is so stiff, that the droptop didn’t need any structure reinforcements.
“We wanted the driving experience of the Corvette to live up to the performance expectations that come with the ‘Stingray’ name,” said Tadge Juechter, Corvette chief engineer. “Because it was designed from the beginning as an open-top car, the Corvette Stingray delivers an exhilarating, connected driving experience – no matter what configuration you choose.”
General Motors did say that they’d be introducing a newly updated 2014 Chevrolet Camaro. What they didn’t say was that they’d be reviving one of the most renown nameplates for the Camaro lineup. Earlier today at the 2013 New York International Auto Show, the General revealed the all-new 2014 Chevrolet Camaro Z/28, which GM says is the most track-capable Camaro ever.
“As the ultimate track-capable Camaro, this car restores the mission of the original Z/28, and serves as a testament to the expertise of Chevrolet as the best-selling brand of performance cars,” said Mark Reuss, GM of North America’s president. “The build sheet is the wish list of any racer: lightweight, high-revving, dry-sump LS7 engine; carbon-ceramic brakes; integrated coolers for track use; true aerodynamic downforce, and a significant reduction in curb weight. This car could only come from Chevrolet, and could only be called the Z/28.”
The first Camaro Z/28 saw the light of day in 1967 and was specifically a homologation special to conform with the Sports Car Club of America’s Trans-Am 2 class. However, the new Camaro Z/28 doesn’t carry the same mission for a specific race series. It is just a harder, faster and more capable Camaro.
Under the hood sits the Chevrolet Corvette Z06’s naturally aspirated LS7 7.0L V8 good for at least 500hp and 470 lb-ft of torque. It gets a revised racing-style cold-air intake along with large K&N air filter to improve airflow and is mated to a robust Tremec TR6060 transmission. It also receives a dry-sump lubrication system and has a liquid-to-liquid oil cooler for maximum cooling efficiency.
A limited-slip differential is standard, as is an active large-diameter exhaust system. The differential and transmission also get their own cooling apparatuses to ensure on-track reliability and performance.
Turbocharging is more popular than ever as car makers look for ways to produce power more, more efficiently.
Turbos have been around since before the First World War and have traditionally been used as a way of generating more power without increasing the displacement of an engine. The increase in popularity of the diesel passenger car in the last 15 years is primarily due to turbocharging, and turbos are now finding their way onto downsized petrol engines to improve fuel economy.
Turbochargers were first used on some aero engines in WW1, soon finding their way onto large diesel engines used for trucks, trains and ships in the 1920s. Turbocharged petrol cars appeared in the 1970s. Technological improvements have widened the appeal of turbocharged cars by reducing the time it takes for the turbo’s added grunt to kick in – referred to as turbo-lag.
To put it simply, turbochargers help engines breath better and perform better. They do this by using the engine’s exhaust gas to spin a turbine wheel that connects to a compressor wheel via a shaft, that then compresses intake air and forces it into the cylinder. This compressed forced air allows more fuel to be burnt and more power to be produced at the same engine speed.
The Ford Atlas concept has stormed onto the scene in Detroit, with the intimidating ute giving us an insight into the Blue Oval’s vision for the next-generation Ford F-150 pick-up.
Stealing the limelight from rival General Motors’ debutant duo – the 2014 Chevrolet Silverado and the new GMC Sierra – Ford global product development vice president Raj Nair said the futuristic Atlas concept previewed innovations that would transform the world’s expectations of full-size utes.
“With 36 years as America’s best-selling pick-up, we are absolutely committed to setting the agenda in the truck market,” Nair said.
The Detroit-based manufacturer says the Atlas concept was inspired by decades of feedback from customers who use their Ford F-150s for work and play.
Ford group vice president and chief creative officer J Mays said the concept’s prominent wheel arches, chiselled grille and wide stance, along with its load-hauling versatility and cutting-edge interior were intended to address the demands and desires of next-generation pick-up customers.
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If the immediate success of the first ML-class in the late ’90s weren’t enough to justify Mercedes’ decision to start selling SUVs, the introduction of the larger, three-row GL-class for 2007 would have done the trick. Combining most of the practicality of a Chevy Suburban with the refinement of a Range Rover, the GL quickly racked up two consecutive C/D 5Best Trucks awards, a comparison-test win, and underwent a 40,000-mile long-term test, quickly becoming one of our favorite luxury workhorses.
The second-gen GL arrives for 2013 with a nip here and a tuck there, as well as a host of equipment updates that keep it Mercedes’ most capable and opulent family hauler. Despite its Alabama roots—like all Merc SUVs, it’s assembled in Tuscaloosa—the big German retains its ancestral accent, especially when outfitted with the 3.0-liter V-6 turbo-diesel found in our GL350 test vehicle.
East Bound and Down
Whereas gas-powered GLs now feature twin-turbo V-8s with up to 550 hp, the 2013 BlueTec’s diesel V-6 makes do with a modest 240 (30 more than before). More important, the new model gains 55 lb-ft of torque, now boasting 455 at 1600 rpm. We’re glad the extra twist is on hand, as weight has increased to 5835 pounds, about 120 more than before. So the engine is stout, but it takes a moment to dip into its reserves at low speeds, with slight lag evident. Once the single turbo is spooled, though, the mountain of torque affords ample passing power on highways and is well suited to the GL’s bulk. Diesel clatter is practically nonexistent to occupants, who hear only a pleasantly gruff rumble. Towing capacity is a useful 7500 pounds with the optional $ 550 trailer hitch, which our test vehicle had.
At the test track, the GL350 hit 60 mph in 7.5 seconds and covered the quarter-mile in 15.8. Those represent improvements of 1.1 and 0.9 seconds over the previous model. Reassuring brakes and a firm pedal brought the truck to a halt from 70 mph in 175 feet. Fuel-economy estimates have notably increased from 17 mpg in the city and 21 on the highway to 19/26; we averaged a respectable 22 mpg. That last number translates to nearly 600 miles of range with the GL’s 26.4-gallon tank.
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The all-new sixth-generation Nissan Patrol will arrive in Australia in January 2013 – a full three years after its release in the Middle East.
Up until now, the new Patrol has been built as a left-hand-drive vehicle only and Nissan Australia was the only market that put its hand up for a right-hand-drive version.
We’re also the only country to have requested a diesel version of the latest Y62 Patrol, but the likelihood of that wish being granted, at least in the short term, is slim, at best.
Blame that on the cashed-up UAE market where petrol prices hover around .50 cents a litre and big V8s rule the sand dunes with diesels confined to freight trucks.
So, for the moment, fans of the new Nissan Patrol will have to settle for a 5.6-litre direct injection V8 petrol engine producing 298kW and 560Nm of torque.
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The Ram pickup has been with us since 1981, and through those three-plus decades it has played third fiddle to its Ford and Chevy rivals.
That’s a long time, during which numerous sales managers have probably found it necessary to update their résumés. But the latest generation could well bring that also-ran status to an end—at least until the 2014 GM pickups make their appearance. Maybe even beyond.
So what’s the big deal? Styling? Design chief Joe Dehner and his sheetmetal commandos have massaged just about every square inch of the skin, and the sum of their attentions is a coefficient of drag—0.36—that’s best in class, according to the Ram hymnal.
But when you get right down to it, the new truck looks a lot like the old one, and anyone who doesn’t know it’s a Ram hasn’t been driving in America since 1994.
Okay, how about chassis? New stuff down there. Chrysler—sorry, the trucks are now under the Ram brand—used high-strength steel throughout, saving about 30 pounds in the frame and chassis. And optional air springs at all four corners, an upgrade made easy by the 2009 introduction of a coil-spring rear suspension, are available on Quad and Crew Cab models.
The air springs allow adjustable ride height—for example, the driver can add up to two inches of ground clearance for dirty work, then lower the truck at highway speeds to improve aero. Beyond that, they deliver exceptionally silky ride quality by truck standards, on pavement or off.