The use of telemetry communication in F1 plays an imperative role; it essentially gives life to all the collective efforts from the drivers, engineers, technicians, team principals and tacticians – once a car is performing, all the work put into the car is transmitted back to the team via wireless data.
A driver may feel what the car is doing and can communicate by radio as to what he thinks may be of concern, but the true miniscule and accurate details of what is really going on is measured and collected by technological systems installed throughout the car. These can be anything from brake temperatures to engine management – in the picture above I have indicated these two readings in green.
A decade ago, engineers receiving data from the car could adjust systems accordingly to give the car maximum performance, but this was eventually regarded as taking away some of the driver skill, so all the engineers can do now with the data is advise the driver to make any changes, which can be implemented via their steering wheel.
On Friday, we inspected the 121 entrants to the first-ever There Goes the Neighborhood 24 Hours of LeMons, held at the Monticello Motor Club. On Saturday, we enjoyed a great Alfa-vs-Ford-vs-(Saab-engined) Nissan battle for the lead. On Sunday, the surviving cars battled for victory. Let’s see which teams went home with new trophies!
The winner on laps, believe it or not, was a Nissan 300ZX with a goofy Saab 900 Turbo engine swap. When we saw Rust In the Wind win in New Hampshire last year, we thought the team might be a one-hit wonder (having watched the Rust In the Wind guys struggle for two years to even finish a LeMons race), but they held off the Pro Crash Duh Nation Alfa Romeo Milano and won this race by a fraction of a lap.
Spirit of LeMons: How a 1956 Cessna Airplane Became a Road-Racing LeMons Car (w/ Build Photos/Video)
A couple of weeks ago, the world as we knew it was turned topsy-turvy by the sight of a 1956 Cessna 310 airplane converted to an earthbound road-racing machine. We gave the Spirit of LeMons the top award for the 2013 Southern Discomfort 24 Hours of LeMons, and now it’s time to explain exactly how this machine came to be.
This racing series has proven to be the ideal venue for a certain type of fabricating artistic genius. Before LeMons came along, these guys built their surrealist automotive masterpieces and got little recognition beyond a few befuddled neighbors. Thanks to LeMons, Jeff Bloch aka Speedycop, a Washington, D.C., police officer who built the fastest street-legal P71 Ford Crown Victoria in the country, has gone on a four-year tear of rounding up like-minded maniacs and building some of the greatest low-budget race cars in the history of motorsport. We don’t have space here to do justice to the past creations of Speedycop & the Gang of Outlaws (just skim some of these Legends of LeMons articles and you’ll get the idea), so just keep in mind that the Spirit of LeMons Cessna 310 is the culmination of a series of increasingly amazing machines from the Gang of Outlaws.
“The RX-8 doesn’t just like a drink; it is the founding member of the AA institution for sports car engines”
Are you tired of my RX-8 reports yet? If you secretly nodded your head in agreement, then I have good news for you, because this will be the final one, in which I’ll try to recount the ups and downs of running Mazda’s last rotary sports car – until, hopefully, the next one comes up…
First of all, let me introduce you to the world’s first contemporary four-door coupe. The Mercedes-Benz CLS that supposedly invented the niche? It was launched a year later than the RX-8, which is a coupe and has four doors. True, the Merc and its clones are perched much higher in terms of pricing and none adopted the rear suicide doors that did without the B-pillar, but you get the point.
There’s nothing else like it on the market – period. Its powerplant shuns valves, pistons and conrods for ports and rotors and thus produces 228HP from a capacity of just 1.3 liters and a mad 9,500 rpm redline. I’ll admit, it suffers from a severe lack of low-end torque, but it revs so creamily and effortlessly that a chime has to remind you to change up before you hit the limiter.
This comes at a price. The RX-8 doesn’t just like a drink; it is the founding member of the AA institution for sports car engines. Yes, it really is that bad. No matter how gentle the right pedal is treated, a shocking 16-18 lt/km (15-13 mpg US) average in mixed use is common. Combine it with the 61–liter fuel tank and visits to gas stations are much more frequent than Lindsay Lohan’s to courts and rehab facilities.
On the bright side, it doesn’t get that much worse when it gets a good pasting. Thus, since the tank and wallet are draining at nearly the same rate regardless of speed, better to indulge in it. That’s what it was made for after all, right?
BMW first unveiled one of its latest 3-Series variants, known as the 3-Series Gran Turismo or GT, at this year’s Chicago Auto Show. Now, BMW sought the bigger New York moment by showcasing the 2014 BMW 3-Series GT at this year’s New York International Auto Show.
The 2014 BMW 3-Series GT follows the way of its older sibling, the BMW 5-Series GT, with an all-new sloping rear boot lid. In some ways, it reminds me of the old 1990s E36-generation 3-Series compact…and I’m not quite sure if that’s a good thing.
But still, I think the 2014 3-Series GT looks a lot better than the larger BMW 5-Series GT.
All the engine options from the standard 3-Series carry over to the 2014 BMW 3-Series Gran Turismo, which include BMW’s luscious 3.0L N55 twin-turbocharged straight-six good for 320hp and 300 lb-ft of torque, and BMW’s new 2.0L TwinPower turbocharged N20 four-banger good for 241hp and 258 lb-ft of torque.
For our full press recap, check it out after the jump.
All Photos Copyright egmCarTech © Chris Chin.
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2013 New York: The 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA45 AMG zooms into the Big Apple w/ some serious performance figures w/ video
Mercedes-Benz got quite a bit of attention today as they unveiled the very much-anticipated 2014 CLA45 AMG. The 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class first debuted in Detroit earlier in the year with the Three-Pointed Star saying that the AMG version will come later. Welp, it’s here now.
“In the CLA45 AMG, Mercedes-AMG presents a unique and absolutely desirable automobile with the characteristic AMG genes,” said Mercedes-AMG’s CEO, Ola Kallenius. “The high-tech package with the world’s most powerful four-cylinder production engine and performance-oriented AMG 4MATIC all-wheel drive stands for ‘Driving Performance’ at its best.”
The 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA45 AMG is powered by a 2.0L turbocharged four-banger good for 355hp and 332 lb-ft of torque. That makes it the world’s most powerful production four-cylinder. That power comes thanks to a ridiculous 26.1 psi worth of boost from that twin-scroll snail. The result is a 0-60 time of just 4.5 seconds for an electronically limited top speed of 155 MPH.
All Photos Copyright egmCarTech © Chris Chin.
That power is sent to all four-wheels via Mercedes-Benz’s patented 4MATIC all-wheel drive system and AMG’s SpeedShift DCT seven-speed automatic. However, this system—unlike the majority of Mercedes-Benz models—utilizes a front-wheel bias, as the CLA-Class is a front-wheel driven vehicle.
The 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA45 AMG isn’t just about power as many of the internal components have been upgraded to deal with the enormous power that the 2.0L four-pot produces. Special upgraded cooling apparatuses exist for the transmission and the engine, some of which are shared with the halo SLS AMG GT.
Price? The 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA45 AMG will start at just $ 47,450. For full details, check it out below.
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The new 2014 Buick LaCrosse is here! Well, at least on the Internet, because Buick has just pulled off the virtual silk sheets to show what they had in store for the new LaCrosse with less than a day to spare ahead of its New York debut.
Majority of the changes for the 2014 Buick LaCrosse equate to a rather minor facelift, though much of the major components carry over unchanged. The obvious differences lie in the immediate first glance of the LaCrosse, which receives updated wheels, an enlarged front grill, and more angular headlights.
Under the hood sits the usual choice of either GM’s 2.4L Ecotec complete with eAssist, which is good for 182hp and 172 lb-ft of torque, or GM’s 3.6L LFX V6 good for 303hp and 264 lb-ft of torque. Both are paired to a six-speed automatic.
“We evolved the interior and exterior design, increased luxury amenities and materials, and enhanced the safety and personal technologies to give customers more reasons than ever to rediscover Buick,” said Tony DiSalle, Buick’s vice president of marketing for the US.
For full details, check out the press release after the jump.