2008 Infiniti G37 Coupe

May 22nd, 2007

The all-new 2008 Infiniti G37 Coupe, making its world debut at the 2007 New York International Auto Show, combines the exhilarating performance, stunning styling and modern, sporty interior of the original Infiniti G Coupe and accelerates each to new levels. Among the key enhancements to the new second-generation G Coupe are a larger, more powerful 3.7-liter V6 engine, available advanced 4-Wheel Active Steer system, a dramatic new exterior design and a refined interior with intuitive, integrated technology. The G37 Coupe joins the recently introduced, all-new 2007 Infiniti G35 Sedan in Infiniti showrooms nationwide in August.

Exhilarating Performance From a New Engine Design

Leading the enhancements to the 2008 Infiniti G37 Coupe is the first-ever application of the new 3.7-liter V6 engine with VVEL (for Variable Valve Event and Lift). The G37 Coupe’s new VVEL system combines hydraulic-controlled variable valve timing and electronically controlled variable valve lift on the intake side to help improve performance and response. The VVEL intake camshafts, featuring continuously variable lift control teamed with the Continuously Variable Valve Timing Control System (CVTCS), allow for a 7,500 rpm redline.

A new, specially tuned dual exhaust system has been designed with equal length exhaust manifolds and low muffler exhaust backpressure to help improve engine breathing. Both intake and exhaust enhance driving pleasure with their authentic performance notes.

Rated at an estimated 330 horsepower, the new engine is not only considerably more powerful than the previous generation G Coupe (rated at 275 hp with 5AT, 293 hp with 6MT), but is expected to offer increased fuel mileage and reduced emissions levels.

The G37 Coupe engine is backed by a choice of an upgraded electronically controlled 5-speed automatic transmission with manual mode, downshift rev matching, DS mode and ASC (Adaptive Shift Control) that allows for quicker shifts in sporty driving situations and available genuine magnesium paddle shifters; or a newly revised, lightweight 6-speed manual transmission.

Performance Platform and Suspension

Developed at test circuits throughout Europe – including the famed Nürburgring – the G37 Coupe was conceived as a performance thoroughbred. Handling and ride performance increases come from the G37 Coupe’s enhanced FM (Front Mid-ship) platform, which has been stiffened 36% from the previous generation, is lower in overall height and has a wider front and rear track width.

Available on the new G37 Coupe is Infiniti’s exclusive 4-Wheel Active Steer system (4WAS), with unique chassis configuration that features automatically variable front steering ratios and rear suspension geometry that adjusts to steering input and vehicle speed via motor-driven controls. The system’s electronic control unit calculates the desired vehicle dynamics from a series of sensors, including vehicle speed and steering angle, and separately directs both the front and rear actuators to change steering gear ratios and rear geometry by moving both the front steering gear and rear suspension lower links – thus providing sports car-like agility and secure stability.

To enhance the already high level of dynamic performance, the G37 Coupe 6MT and G37 Coupe Journey with Sport Package come standard with unique sport suspension, a Viscous Limited Slip Differential (VLSD) and a new wheel and tire package with 19×8.5-inch front wheels with 225/45 R19 front tires and 19×9-inch rear wheels with 245/40 R19 rear tires.
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2007 Honda Accord Coupe Concept

May 22nd, 2007

The Honda Accord Coupe Concept reveals a totally new look for the next-generation Accord, along with key technologies for safety, fuel efficiency and performance, American Honda Motor Co., Inc., announced at the 2007 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit. The Accord is Honda’s best-selling model in North America and its debut at NAIAS marks the first time that an Accord concept vehicle has ever been shown at a major auto show.

The styling of the Accord Coupe Concept conveys a powerful stance through its long hood, deeply sculpted lower body and fastback roofline. A six-sided grille and projector headlamps that recess deep into the front fenders contribute to an unmistakable and aggressive front fascia. Quad exhaust outlets integrated into the rear diffuser further convey performance and style beyond any Accord to date.

“The Accord Coupe Concept demonstrates the styling direction for the upcoming, eighth-generation Accord,” said John Mendel, senior vice president of American Honda. “As the industry’s target for midsize segment excellence, the all-new Accord will set a new benchmark for safety, efficiency, performance, refinement and style.”

A more powerful and lower-emissions V6 engine will provide higher fuel efficiency with the incorporation of Honda’s next-generation Variable Cylinder Management (VCM) technology. Honda leads the industry with the highest Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) rating for any full line manufacturer of 29.2 miles per gallon - well above the industry average of 25.3 miles per gallon.

As part of Honda’s “Safety for Everyone” initiative, all next-generation Accord models will include the company’s Advanced Compatibility Engineering (ACE) Body Structure. Honda’s ACE Body Structure incorporates a front-end frame structure that helps absorb and disperse crash energy over a large area in a frontal impact. ACE also makes the vehicle more crash compatible in frontal impacts with vehicles of differing ride heights.

The current generations of the Odyssey (2005), Civic (2006) and CR-V (2007) all have the ACE Body Structure. Together, the ACE-equipped vehicles represent more than 50 percent of all 2007 Honda vehicles sold on a sales-weighted basis. With the addition of the next-generation Accord to the lineup of vehicles with ACE, more than 75 percent will be equipped with the technology on a sales-weighted basis after it goes on sale.

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Gumpert Apollo Sport

May 22nd, 2007

The Gumpert Apollo is a synthesis of dynamic and design with pure driving pleasure and unique performance. On the road it speeds like not many other cars and on the race track it cries out to be challenged by an opponent that can match its breathtaking acceleration and handling. Now, it is due to get a worthy competitor out of its own stable. At the 77th Geneva Motor Show, the Gumpert Sportwagenmanufaktur will present the Apollo Sport to the wide public.

The Gumpert Apollo Sport is the rebel amongst the super sports cars. Its bodywork combines sexy curves with potent edges and angles and aims for uncompromising aerodynamics. A clear demonstration of the principle form follows function. Its challenging sporting design derives from the requirement to built a street legal racing car, whose number one priority is to provide extraordinary performance on the circuit, but at the same time embodying a vehicle suitable for daily use.

The highest importance was attached to safety: the tubular space frame in chrome-molybdenum steel with integrated safety monocoque fabricated in carbon-fiber passes all crash-tests regulations, while a cashbox offers additional protection. The gaping air intake stub over the roof and on the rear signals power, dynamics and superiority. The eight cylinder, bi-turbo mid-engine with up to 800 horsepower is capable of catapulting this 2645 lbs missile from 0-62 mph in only 3 seconds.

The Apollo Sport is equipped with an extended aerodynamic package and, in contrast to the three part spoiler of the Apollo, possesses a racing wing which gives even more down force. The more powerful engine still manages to accelerate this beast to a top speed of 224 mph.

The two-seater also convinces from the inside, with its sporty and elegant alcantara interior, and offers air-condition, CD-player, navigation system and reverse view camera as standard equipment. A two-layer metallic finish available in any conceivable color, gives this racer a particular luster. As a special accessory the Apollo is equipped with an airjack, a pneumatic jacking pad.

Specifications
Engine
Type: Bi-turbo V8
Displacement cu in (cc): n.a.
Power bhp (kW) at RPM: 800(597) / n.a.
Torque lb-ft (Nm) at RPM: n.a.
Redline at RPM: n.a.
Brakes & Tires
Brakes F/R: ABS, vented disc/vented disc
Tires F-R: n.a.
Driveline: Rear Wheel Drive
Exterior Dimensions & Weight
Length × Width × Height in: n.a.
Weight lb (kg): 2640 (1200)
Performance
Acceleration 0-62 mph s: 3
Top Speed mph (km/h): 224 (360)
Fuel Economy EPA city/highway mpg (l/100 km): n.a.

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2007 Jaguar C-XF Concept

May 22nd, 2007

The C-XF concept car is a stunning, four-door sports saloon which blends design purity with unmistakable dynamism and is a clear indication of the design direction that the next generations of Jaguar saloons will take.

Designed by the same teams that produced the award-winning Jaguar XK sports GT range in 2005 – headed by Jaguar Director of Design Ian Callum and Head of Advanced Design Julian Thomson – the C-XF concept is a precursor to cars that will become recognized for their ground-breaking exterior looks and innovative interiors.

As a striking interpretation of the design values that are the bedrock of every great Jaguar, the C-XF is wholly contemporary yet succeeds in paying homage to its renowned predecessors.

Exterior Design

Set into the front of the C-XF is a bold and aggressive grille finished in black chrome. Recessed deeply into the body rather than sitting flush with the surface, the visual effect is similar to that of an air intake on a jet engine and serves as a reminder that directly behind is a sophisticated and powerful 4.2-litre supercharged V8 engine.

The headlamps which evolve the twin-lamp motif seen on previous Jaguars into a single slim wedge, are narrow and angular. They bring an air of aggression to the C-XF’s profile, while between the lamps a blue streak of light reveals an almost cat-like iris when illuminated. Subtly etched below the lenses is a unique ‘tattoo’ design showing an abstract Jaguar leaper logo – a tattoo that is repeated in the treadplates of the door sills and in the tread of the bespoke Pirelli tires that surround the 21-inch machined, polished aluminum wheels.

Running backwards from the nose of the C-XF is the main feature line of the car – an unbroken shoulder that flows beneath the cabin glassline and into the haunch over the rear wheel. It is this feature, a modern interpretation of renowned Jaguar sports saloons from history, that endows C-XF with its latent power. A similarly simple line can also be seen on the new XK range and is one of the design cues that will carry forward onto the next generation of Jaguars.

Innovation

Visually coming to life when being started is one thing, but sensing the requirements of an occupant without physical touch is a further, significant leap forward again. The introduction of a new prototype technology, called JaguarSense, sees four sensors hidden within the doors react to the sweep of your hand as it passes over them. Once activated, the inner door handles – previously hidden – motor outwards ready to be used.

A fifth sensor, located in the facia, responds to the proximity of your hand to reveal an infotainment screen that lies flush within the aluminum front panel. The sequence continues with the centre section of the dashboard rotating 90 degrees to display an advanced Dual View screen which is capable of projecting two different images to the driver and passenger simultaneously. For example, the driver can view satellite-navigation instructions while the passenger watches a DVD-based movie.

Powertrain

Beneath the C-XF’s bonnet, further technical excellence is immediately apparent. The car is powered by an enhanced version of Jaguar’s renowned 4.2-litre supercharged V8 engine. Tuned to produce in excess of 420 bhp and 400 lb-ft of torque – the latter produced from very low revs – this proven powerplant and its six-speed automatic transmission with Jaguar Sequential Shift manual gearchange capability, deliver superb sporting performance. If C-XF were a production car, it would reach an electronically limited top speed of 155 mph, with the possibility of an unrestricted speed in excess of 180 mph.

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2007 Koenigsegg CCGT

May 22nd, 2007

Koenigsegg has created a new race car - the CCGT, based on the production CC-model range. The CCGT complies with the ACO and FIA GT1 regulations.

The CCGT engine is based on the Koenigsegg CCX production engine with the superchargers removed but enlarged to 5.0 liter.

The reliability of the race engine is expected be exceptional as it is based on the proven strength and durability of the significantly more powerful road car engine.

The minimum weight allowed for a GTI race car is 1,100 kg and most manufacturers struggle to meet this target, having to undergo massive weight saving programs.

Due to the fact the Koenigsegg CC cars are very light and stiff in road configuration, the racing CCGT weighs in at just under an astounding 1,000 kg. This gives the possibility to place 100 kg of ballast freely within the car structure, still following the set rules. This should give Koenigsegg an interesting advantage over the competition.

The CCGT has very short overhangs, which could be seen as an issue when it comes to generating enough downforce. However, by further developing the clever and “slippery” design concept of the CC range, Koenigsegg believes they have created a unique package incorporating a surprising amount of downforce combined with a very compact package and optimal weight distribution. Since the CCGT has a short overall length and low overall height, whilst still maintaining adequate track width and length, it is thereby gifted with superior agility compared to most of the competition, which should be evident in future heated racing combats.

The Koenigsegg CCGT development team, headed by Dag Bolenius, has done a superb job by refining the CC into the CCGT.

The race engine is being developed in-house in parallel with the production units by Koenigsegg engineers, supported by Anders Hoglund from Cargine engineering and JP Motorsport.

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2008 Chrysler Sebring Convertible Limited

May 20th, 2007

Chrysler is raising the roof on the convertible segment, introducing the all-new 2008 Chrysler Sebring Convertible. This completely redesigned Sebring Convertible is built on the company’s new D-segment platform and offers what no other convertible on the road can offer: Chrysler’s sleek and elegant design, fuel efficient performance, a spacious interior that comfortably sits four adults and enough room in the trunk to hold two golf bags, even when the top is dropped.

The all-new 2008 Chrysler Sebring Convertible also offers what no other convertible has offered before — three automatically latching convertible top options: vinyl, cloth and a first for this new 2008 Sebring Convertible, a body-color painted steel retractable hard top, all of which can be retracted with a push of a button on the key fob. Top that with a standard power hard tonneau cover on all models, and top up or down, Sebring Convertible provides the benefits of coupe and the true open-air freedom of a convertible, all at a surprisingly affordable price.

Exhilarating Performance

Three engine options power the 2008 Chrysler Sebring Convertible sold in the United States: the standard 2.4-liter four-cylinder World Engine, an available Flexible Fuel Vehicle (FFV) 2.7-liter V-6 engine and an available 3.5-liter V-6 engine coupled with a new six-speed automatic transaxle with Auto Stick.

Chrysler Sebring Convertible Limited models sold in the United States are available with a 3.5-liter V-6 engine that produces 235 horsepower and 232 lb-ft of torque coupled with a new six-speed automatic transaxle that comes standard with Auto Stick. The combination of the 3.5-liter V6 engine and six-speed automatic transaxle delivers excellent performance and fuel efficiency, as well as smooth quiet operation. Sebring Convertible’s 3.5-liter V-6 engine achieves 18 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway.

A Breath of Fresh Air

The all-new Chrysler Sebring Convertible brings new levels of function and technology to the U.S. convertible segment. Innovative new features include the cutting-edge MyGIG navigation/entertainment/infotainment system, a heated/cooled cupholder, YES Essentials stain-resistant seat fabric and an available feature every convertible owner will love — the ability to drop the convertible top and all four windows with the push of a button on the key fob.
The 2008 Chrysler Sebring Convertible features MyGIG, a cutting-edge information, entertainment and safety navigation audio system that raises the bar on in-vehicle communications This best-in-class, next-generation navigation radio features a 6.5-inch Thin Film Transistor (TFT) Display with a touch-screen panel that can support 65,000 colors, providing a three-dimensional appearance to graphics and animation, as well as multiple font sizes and styles. The MyGIG system follows voice-activated commands and includes many new features for music, sound, movies and personalized picture displays.

Specifications
Engine
Type: V6
Displacement cu in (cc): 215 (3518)
Power bhp (kW) at RPM: 235(175) / 6400
Torque lb-ft (Nm) at RPM: 232(315) / 4000
Redline at RPM: 6800
Brakes & Tires
Brakes F/R: ABS, vented disc/disc
Tires F-R: 215/55 ZR18
Driveline: Front Wheel Drive
Exterior Dimensions & Weight
Length × Width × Height in: 193.8 × 71.5 × 58.5
Weight lb (kg): n.a.
Performance
Acceleration 0-60 mph s: n.a.
Top Speed mph (km/h): n.a.
Fuel Economy EPA city/highway mpg (l/100 km): 18/28 (n.a.)

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2007 Vodafone McLaren Mercedes MP4-22 Formula 1 Car

May 20th, 2007

Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton, who form one of the youngest driver line-ups in the history of the sport, unveiled the new MP4-22 at the Valencia circuit in Spain.

Pedro de la Rosa and Gary Paffett join Fernando and Lewis to complete the driver line-up. Pedro and Gary, who are starting their fifth and second years with the team respectively, will continue to support the ongoing technical development of the MP4-22 package during the course of the year alongside Fernando and Lewis.

“This is a fantastic day for me - I am really proud to be introducing myself as a Vodafone McLaren Mercedes driver in my home country, and of course to help present my new team to the Spanish fans,” said double World Champion Fernando. “Although this is my first public event with Vodafone McLaren Mercedes, I have already spent a lot of time with the team and my fellow drivers Lewis, Pedro and Gary, at the McLaren Technology Centre. It is a great team and I am excited about this new beginning. My fans are such an inspiration and it is great to bring the team so close to them. I hope they enjoy watching Lewis and myself drive the cars in their new livery around the streets of Valencia.”

For Lewis, today sees the realization of a childhood ambition, “Growing up, I saw so many Formula 1 launches in the media, and to be here in Valencia to unveil the new Vodafone McLaren Mercedes team really brings home to me the distance I have traveled to achieve my dream of becoming a grand prix driver,” said Lewis. “There is still a long way for me to go, as I am at the early stages of my career and have a lot to learn, but the passion I have for the sport and this team is immense, I cannot wait to take to the grid in Australia in March. This year will be about firsts for me, starting with today and my first Formula 1 presentation and my first demonstration run. It will be great to take the cars onto the streets and I hope the fans like the new livery as much as I do!”

Ron Dennis, Team Principal of Vodafone McLaren Mercedes and Chairman and CEO of the McLaren Group added: “This is a very special moment as we officially unveil the team in Valencia today. Vodafone represents only the second title sponsor change in 30 years for the team – something which we as an organization are very proud of.”

“McLaren and Mercedes-Benz have enjoyed a very strong relationship for the past 12 years and we are now looking forward to a successful future as Vodafone McLaren Mercedes,” continued Ron. “We all want to win but how we win has always been very important to us and this value will remain the driving force behind our new partnership. In parallel we have developed a brand strategy which we hope will capture and project the youthful and dynamic spirit of the new team. In Fernando and Lewis we have two of the most exciting and talented drivers in Formula 1. They both have great potential to inspire others to push hard to achieve their dreams.”

Specifications
Engine & Transmission
Manufacturer & Designation: Mercedes-Benz
Type: V8
Displacement cu in (cc): 146 (2398)
Power bhp (kW) at RPM: > 700(522) / 19,000
Torque lb-ft (Nm) at RPM: n.a.
Redline at RPM: n.a.
Transmission: 7-speed plus reverse
Wheels & Tires
Wheels: Enkei
Tires: Bridgestone
Exterior Dimensions & Weight
Length × Width × Height in: n.a.
Weight lb (kg): 1322 (600) - including driver and camera
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2007 Scuderia Ferrari F2007 Formula 1 Car

May 20th, 2007

The F2007 is the fifty third single-seater built by Ferrari specifically to compete in the Formula 1 World Championship.

The project, known internally as the 658, represents the Scuderia’s interpretation of the technical regulations that apply for 2007, with changes principally concerning safety, through the introduction of more stringent front and rear crash tests and the addition of a composite material structure to provide lateral protection to the sides of the driver. These modifications have led to a significant increase in the weight of the car, in the region of about 22 lb’s.

The F2007 chassis has been significantly modified when compared to the 248 F1. The design was revised to accommodate a new front suspension that represents a major conceptual innovation, mainly in terms of aerodynamics. The shape of the side-pods and their openings are also revised, based on modifications to the cooling system, which also implies exits for the radiators on the upper part of the bodywork, while the engine air intake is also substantially different. The car has a longer wheelbase than its predecessor. The rear of the car is much narrower, taking advantage of the more sculpted shape of the gearbox housing, which again this year is made from carbon-fiber. The gearbox itself, which is still mounted longitudinally, is fitted with an innovative quick-shift system (seven plus reverse). The rear suspension is similar to that on the 248 F1, but a significant development programmed is planned in this area, in order to get the most out of the system, based on making progress in understanding the behavior of the 2007 tires. The front and rear aerodynamic configuration is also expected to change considerably before the start of the World Championship. The position of the rear view mirrors seen on the 2006 car remains unchanged and the same goes for the exhaust system.

In accordance with the regulations that come into force this year, the basic structure of the engine remains the same as the one homologated at the end of last season. Therefore, the 056 engine continues as a load bearing member and is again mounted longitudinally. Based on what is permitted in the regulations, the following modifications have been carried out to the engine signed off with the FIA in October 2006:

-the combustion chamber, the valves, the inlet and exhaust chambers, all aimed at optimising the torque curve, given the engine rev limit of 19,000 rpm;
-the piston, the piston pin and the piston cooling jets to aim for the best possible reliability when running at the limit of 19,000 rpm;
-the fluid systems (water and oil) and components to facilitate the integration of the 056 into the new car.
As usual, during the design and development phase of the complete car, the technical partners played an important role. A significant part was played by Shell in terms of fuel and lubricants, by the Fiat Research Centre in the use of simulation systems and by Brembo in developing the braking system. As is now traditional, a great deal of attention was paid to the performance and optimization of the materials used, to the design stage and to quality control, striving to maximize the performance level and to ensure the highest possible standard of safety.

Engine & Transmission
Manufacturer & Designation: Ferrari
Type: V8
Displacement cu in (cc): 146 (2398)
Power bhp (kW) at RPM: n.a.
Torque lb-ft (Nm) at RPM: n.a.
Redline at RPM: 19000
Transmission: 7-speed plus reverse
Wheels & Tires
Wheels: BBS forged magnesium
Tires: Bridgestone
Exterior Dimensions & Weight
Length × Width × Height in: 179 × 70.7 × 37.8
Weight lb (kg): 1322 (600) - including driver and camera

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2007 Panasonic Toyota Racing TF107 Formula 1 Car

May 20th, 2007

Panasonic Toyota Racing unveiled its new TF107 challenger at the Expo XXI conference centre in Cologne, Germany, on January 12th, 2007.

Toyota is the only one of the 11 F1 teams to go into the new season with the same engine, the same tire partner, and the same two race drivers. That unique degree of continuity will enable the team to hit the ground running and build on the experience gained over recent seasons.

Toyota has ambitious goals in Formula 1 and is aiming for success in 2007. “Our fundamental challenge this year is to get the first victory,” says Chairman and Team Principal Tsutomu Tomita.

The team has been strengthened in its quest for success by the arrival of George Tadashi Yamashina, who took over as Vice Chairman of Toyota Motorsport in December. Yamashina will compliment the roles of Tomita and President John Howett, forming a management trio to lead Panasonic Toyota Racing to success.

Last year the team did not meet its high expectations it had after success in 2005 but there is great confidence that the TF107 will see Toyota competing at the front again.

The team had a frustrating 2006 season but, in the spirit of kaizen, or continuous improvement, the new car benefits from all the knowledge and experience gained. With the right people in place and the will to win, the TF107 is the product of the team’s potential.

While there is continuity in other areas, the TF107 is a completely new car, with virtually no parts carried over from the TF106 and TF106B that preceded it.

“It’s pretty extensively changed in terms of basic lay-out,” says Howett. “When we went from the V10 to V8 the back of the engine effectively stayed in the same place, and the chassis and fuel tank filled the space where the front two cylinders of the V10 were. Now we’ve moved to engine forward, and yet worked really hard to still have a big tank. The gearbox is longer, and we will run a seamless shift for the first time.

In 2006 Toyota made the switch to Bridgestone tires, giving it a head start in cooperating when the Japanese company becomes the sole supplier this year.The experience gained in adapting to new tires will benefit the team and help it get the maximum out of the tires available.

Specifications
Engine & Transmission
Manufacturer & Designation: Toyota RVX-07
Type: V8
Displacement cu in (cc): 146 (2398)
Power bhp (kW) at RPM: est. 740(552) / 19000
Torque lb-ft (Nm) at RPM: n.a.
Redline at RPM: 19000
Transmission: 7-speed plus reverse
Wheels & Tires
Wheels: BBS forged magnesium
Tires: Bridgestone
Exterior Dimensions & Weight
Length × Width × Height in: 178.4 × 70.9 × 37.4
Weight lb (kg): 1322 (600) - including driver and camera

panasonic_toyota.jpg

2007 ING Renault R27 Formula 1 Car

May 20th, 2007

The ING Renault F1 Team roars into F1 with the launch of its R27 racer, aiming for continued on-track success. The ING Renault F1 Team nailed its new colors to the mast with the launch of the all-new R27 F1 car and a striking visual identity.

The ING Renault F1 Team signales its arrival in Formula 1 in style, with a spectacular media presentation in front of 600 VIPs and media in Amsterdam today (1/24/2007). Winners of consecutive world championships in 2005 and 2006, the team proudly unveiled new title partner ING and the striking new livery that will adorn the R27 cars throughout the 2007 season and beyond.

Renault F1 Team President Alain Dassas spoke of “exciting challenges” for the coming season, which will see the team’s championship campaign spearheaded by Italian Giancarlo Fisichella, in his third season with the team, and Finnish rookie Heikki Kovalainen.

“Double championship success in 2005 and 2006 has earned Renault its status as a major force in Formula 1,” asserted Dassas. “Our Formula 1 championship success is a benchmark of excellence that we aim to meet in every area of our operations. The Renault F1 Team’s performance culture reflects the ambitious objectives of our company-wide plan, Renault Commitment 2009. Consecutive double championships are concrete proof that Renault can win in a demanding environment where success demands quality, technical excellence and reliability.

After evaluating the three top teams in Formula 1, ING selected the Renault F1 Team as the perfect fit for its first global marketing campaign. With a reach of 60 million clients around the world, ING is seeking to exploit its significant investment in Formula 1, which will also include title sponsorship of the opening round of the season in Australia, to grow brand awareness globally. The Renault F1 Team’s track record as a proven winner was a decisive factor in their decision to sponsor the reigning world champions.

The ING Renault F1 Team’s 2007 challenger has been christened R27. The new car represents an evolution of the design philosophy that won world championship success in 2005 and 2006. Every part of the car has been designed to meet demanding performance criteria that will enable the team to maintain its front-running performance. The aerodynamic packaging represents a further step forward over its predecessor in terms of overall efficiency, and innovative solutions have been employed in a number of areas to achieve improved performance under stable technical regulations. The car also features a new ‘instantaneous gearchange’ seven-speed gearbox, and has been designed with maximum set-up flexibility in order that its dynamic characteristics can be tuned to suit the Bridgestone Potenza tires that will be used by every team in 2007.

The new car will be powered by the 2.4L V8 RS27 engine, which has been designed to the requirements of the ‘engine homologation’ regulations which will be in force for 2007 and beyond. Conceived to limit expenditure on engine development, these rules specify that no performance improvements can be made to the engine relative to the definitive specification that will be submitted to the FIA by 1 March 2007. The engine is based on the RS26 V8 engine that competed in the Chinese and Japanese Grands Prix last season, and has been re-tuned in line with modifications permitted by the regulations for the new maximum rev limit of 19,000 rpm that will be imposed on all competitors.

Specifications
Engine & Transmission
Manufacturer & Designation: Renault RS27
Type: V8
Displacement cu in (cc): 146 (2398)
Power bhp (kW) at RPM: n.a.
Torque lb-ft (Nm) at RPM: n.a.
Redline at RPM: 19000
Transmission: 7-speed plus reverse
Wheels & Tires
Wheels: OZ Racing
Tires: Bridgestone
Exterior Dimensions & Weight
Length × Width × Height in: n.a.
Weight lb (kg): 1322 (600) - including driver and camera

renault_ing.jpg

2007 Honda Racing RA107 Formula 1 Car

May 20th, 2007

The Honda Racing F1 Team announced a major new initiative for the 2007 Formula 1 season. To help raise awareness of the environmental issues facing the planet, the RA107 F1 car will simply feature a huge image of earth, in place of the advertising and sponsor logos which have featured and dominated all other F1 cars for decades.

The car’s new look is a powerful call to action for fans, sponsors, customers and members of the public to join Honda’s commitment to help address the environmental issues facing the world.

Via the website www.myearthdream.com, anyone who wishes, will have the opportunity to have their name on the car, make a pledge to make a lifestyle change to improve the environment and make a donation to an environmental charity. Under the concept of “our car is your car”, each name will form a tiny individual pixel which will help build the image of planet earth on the car. Each name will be visible on the website when you make the pledge or under a microscope on the car.

The Honda Racing F1 Team will work closely with global environmental charities to develop Honda’s existing environmental ethos within the world’s most high profile motor-sport.

Nick Fry, Chief Executive Officer

“Climate change is probably the single biggest issue facing our planet and F1 is not immune from it. On the contrary we believe that F1 with its huge global profile and cutting edge technology can play an important role in not only highlighting the issues but also playing our part in developing solutions. In addition, the FIA recognises the opportunity for F1 to play an important role in developing technologies for the benefit of society long term. For example, by 2009, devices for energy recovery will be in place on the cars.

“First and foremost, we are a race team and F1 is very much a team sport. We achieve our racing objectives only by working together and parallels can be drawn with the way that we must all join together to address the environmental challenge. We hope that in raising awareness and highlighting the issues we will encourage members of the public to come together and help take on the challenge of climate change”.

Yasuhiro Wada, Chairman

“Honda has a huge desire to challenge for this year’s 2007 F1 World Championship. We hope this year will be a successful and exciting season. Equally we intend to give something back in the form of our new environmental F1 concept, which we believe will bring something fresh and new to motor sport.

“Honda constantly strives to be innovative in both its technology and its thinking and to sincerely respond to the demands of customers and society. Honda has always made great efforts to contribute to the preservation of the environment in its corporate activity. We hope this new initiative for Honda in F1 will help to further stimulate awareness and interest across the world for these important environmental issues.”

Specifications
Engine & Transmission
Manufacturer & Designation: Honda RA807E
Type: V8
Displacement cu in (cc): 146 (2398)
Power bhp (kW) at RPM: n.a.
Torque lb-ft (Nm) at RPM: n.a.
Redline at RPM: 19000
Transmission: 7-speed plus reverse
Wheels & Tires
Wheels: BBS Forged Magnesium
Tires: Bridgestone
Exterior Dimensions & Weight
Length × Width × Height in: n.a.
Weight lb (kg): 1322 (600) - including driver and camera

honda_ra107.jpg

2007 Dodge Charger SRT8

May 20th, 2007

When Dodge unveiled the all-new 2007 Dodge Charger into its lineup, performance-car aficionados had a lot to celebrate. The party gets kicked up a notch with the introduction of the Dodge Charger SRT8.

With its infusion of Street and Racing Technology (SRT) DNA, Dodge hopes that the 2007 Dodge Charger SRT8 provides exactly what performance enthusiasts want in their American muscle sedan: more power, world-class ride and handling, benchmark braking, functional and aggressive-looking exterior enhancements and a race-inspired interior.

“The all-new Dodge Charger embodies all of the key attributes of the Dodge brand – bold, powerful, street-smart and full of life,” said Darryl Jackson, Vice President, Dodge Marketing, Chrysler Group. “The all-new 2007 Dodge Charger SRT8 builds on the Dodge formula. It starts with a 425-horsepower 6.1-liter HEMI engine and continues with a powerful dose of renowned Street and Racing Technology performance for a tremendous performance-per-dollar value story.”

“The SRT approach to performance is multi-dimensional,” said Dan Knott, Director, Street and Racing Technology, Chrysler Group. “For example, the 2007 Dodge Charger SRT8 incorporates Brembo brakes to stop as well as it accelerates. Its handling is world-class across a dynamic range. Its interior is designed specifically for the performance driver. And its performance exterior characteristics don’t just look great, they’re also functional.”

As an all-around performer, the 2007 Dodge Charger SRT8 is capable of awe-inspiring numbers unheard-of in a muscle sedan: 0-60 mph in around 5 seconds, quarter-mile time in the 13-second range and braking distance from 60-0 mph in approximately 110 feet. The Dodge Charger SRT8 is also capable of accomplishing SRT’s signature performance test of 0-100-0 mph in the mid 16-second range.
Powertrain

Just as the very first Charger – the original 1964 “Charger by Dodge” concept car - sported a HEMI V-8, the all-new 2007 Dodge Charger SRT8 gets its motivation from a HEMI, too. In this case, it’s a big-bore, SRT-engineered version producing 425 horsepower and 420 lb-ft of torque.

Several features of the new 6.1-liter SRT HEMI recall the legendary HEMI engines of previous decades, including the namesake hemispherical combustion chambers that provide power and efficiency, orange-painted cylinder block, black valve covers, and even the horsepower rating (with less displacement, the 6.1-liter HEMI’s 69.8 horsepower-per-liter rating exceeds that of the legendary Street HEMI of the 1960s and ‘70s).

To create the 6.1-liter version of the Chrysler Group’s HEMI, SRT powertrain engineers applied tried-and-true engine-building tricks honed by generations of American hot-rodders.

They unleashed 85 more horsepower by adding more cubic inches, increasing the compression ratio, redesigning the cylinder head, intake and exhaust systems for increased flow, and increasing engine speed.

For more displacement, SRT engineers bored out the diameter of the cylinders in the HEMI by 3.5 millimeters each in order to increase the total displacement to 6.1 liters from 5.7 liters.

Specifications
Engine
Type: V8
Displacement cu in (cc): 370 (6059)
Power bhp (kW) at RPM: 425(318) / 6000
Torque lb-ft (Nm) at RPM: 420(569) / 4800
Redline at RPM: 6400
Brakes & Tires
Brakes F/R: ABS, vented disc/vented disc
Tires F-R: 245/45 R20 - 255/45 R20
Driveline: Rear Wheel Drive
Exterior Dimensions & Weight
Length × Width × Height in: 200.1 × 74.5 × 57.7
Weight lb (kg): 4160 (1887)
Performance
Acceleration 0-62 mph s: 5.0 (estimate)
Top Speed mph (km/h): n.a.
Fuel Economy EPA city/highway mpg (l/100 km): n.a.

dodge_charger_srt81.jpg

2007 Dodge Caliber SRT4

May 20th, 2007

Chrysler Group’s Street and Racing Technology (SRT) group will take the SRT4 reputation to new heights with the introduction of the all-new, 300-horsepower 2007 Dodge Caliber SRT4.

“The all-new 2007 Dodge Caliber SRT4 achieves the SRT mission of offering benchmark performance for the best price,” said George Murphy, Senior Vice President – Global Marketing, Chrysler Group. “With 300 horsepower under the hood, the Dodge Caliber SRT4 will dominate the sport-compact market.”

With true tuner performance right out of the box and a great price, enthusiasts immediately took to the original SRT4, which was introduced in 2003 at the Los Angeles Auto Show. In the 2003-2005 model years, more than 25,000 Dodge SRT4s were sold.

Standout Powertrain

The all-new 2007 Caliber SRT4’s formula begins with powertrain, essentially explained by four numbers: 85, 125, 300 and 260. The 85 is how much more horsepower than the original Dodge SRT4 is available, which results in 125 horsepower per liter for a total of 300 horsepower. The final number is 260, as in 260 lb-ft of tire-smoking, push-back-in-your-seat torque.

To achieve its high-performance Dodge Caliber SRT4 configuration, the aluminum 2.4-liter World Engine block is specially machined for increased water and oil flow. Unique cast pistons travel within iron cylinder liners, and are cooled by oil squirters and affixed to forged connecting rods for high-revving reliability.

Free-flow induction begins with an all-new air cleaner assembly that draws through an opening in a front crossmember for proximity to cool air. The air is then compressed in a TD04 turbocharger specially configured for the engine’s inlet and outlet packaging requirements, and sent through an intercooler to a 57 mm throttle body.

Power is transferred through a dual-mass flywheel to the six-speed manual transmission. The dual-mass flywheel consists of two flywheels sandwiching internal springs that are specially tuned to reduce noise and vibration. The GF DMT-6 six-speed transmission, equipped with a limited-slip differential for uniform side-to-side power transfer, is capable of handling up to 300 lb-ft of torque.

Ride and Handling

The all-new 2007 Dodge Caliber SRT4 rides on SRT-unique 19-inch cast aluminum wheels with 225/45 R19 W-rated Goodyear tires. Wheel hubs and bearings on all four corners are adapted from Chrysler Group mid-size cars for strength.

Upgrades to the standard 2007 Dodge Caliber’s MacPherson strut front suspension include new suspension knuckles and tuned dampers with revised spring rates. Unique front and rear sway bars keep body roll to a minimum during hard cornering.

To ensure its track-ready character, extensive durability testing of the Dodge Caliber SRT4 will take place at Firebird Raceway in Phoenix; Texas Motorsports Ranch in Ft. Worth, Texas; and Nelson Ledges in Garrettsville, Ohio.

Specifications
Engine
Type: Inline-4, Turbocharged
Displacement cu in (cc): 144 (2360)
Power bhp (kW) at RPM: 300(223) / 6000
Torque lb-ft (Nm) at RPM: 260(352) / 2000-6000
Redline at RPM: 6500
Brakes & Tires
Brakes F/R: ABS, vented disc/disc
Tires F-R: 255/45 R19
Driveline: Front Wheel Drive
Exterior Dimensions & Weight
Length × Width × Height in: 173.8 × 68.8 × 60.4
Weight lb (kg): 3189 (1447) - Estimated
Performance
Acceleration 0-60 mph s: < 6
Top Speed mph (km/h): n.a.
Fuel Economy EPA city/highway mpg (l/100 km): 22/28 (n.a.)
2007_dodge_srt4.jpg

2007 Chrysler 300C SRT-8

May 20th, 2007

With 85 more horses under the hood, the momentum continues for the Chrysler 300 and its HEMI engine. Today, the Chrysler Group revealed the 425-horsepower 2005 Chrysler 300C SRT-8.

“With a nearly 50 percent take rate, the HEMI is a critical ingredient to the success of the Chrysler 300,” said Dan Knott, Director - Street and Racing Technology (SRT). “With the new 2005 Chrysler 300C SRT-8, we are now adding even more horsepower to the HEMI and even more performance to the Chrysler 300C”.

Powertrain

The 425-horsepower, normally aspirated 6.1-liter HEMI is the highest specific-output engine ever offered by the Chrysler Group. Its 69.8 horsepower-per-liter rating exceeds even that of the legendary 1966 “Street HEMI.” Torque is rated at 420 lb-ft.

When SRT set out to develop a more powerful HEMI for the Chrysler 300C SRT-8, they were mindful of the engine’s heritage, which led to adopting traditional HEMI engine cues, such as an orange-painted cylinder block and black valve covers.

The SRT powertrain engineers who developed the Chrysler 300C SRT-8’s engine achieved more horsepower by adding more cubic inches, increasing the compression ratio, redesigning the cylinder head intake and exhaust systems for increased flow, and increasing engine speed.

To get more displacement, SRT engineers bored out the diameter of the cylinders in the Chrysler 300C SRT-8’s HEMI by 3.5 millimeters each, to increase the total displacement to 6.1 liters from 5.7 liters. Compression ratio was also increased to 10.3:1 from 9.6:1, unleashing more energy in the combustion process.

Ride and Handling

The Chrysler 300C SRT-8 is conditioned for outstanding ride and handling across the dynamic range that customers are likely to experience.

Chassis setup for the Chrysler 300C SRT-8 is aimed at all-around performance with a number of enhancements, including tuned dampers, specially tailored spring rates and suspension bushings and larger-diameter anti-sway bars. New front and rear suspension knuckles contribute to a ride height lowered one-half inch from the Chrysler 300C. And, the Electronic Stability Program (ESP) has been specially tuned for the SRT-8’s performance handling characteristics.

The Chrysler 300C SRT-8 connects with the road via a new wheel and tire assembly consisting of 20-inch forged aluminum wheels shod with high-performance Goodyear F1 three-season tires (four-season tires are an available option) with asymmetrical tread. Tire dimensions are a beefy 245/45/20 in the front, and 255/45/20 in the rear.

Braking performance goes hand-in-hand with the new Chrysler 300C SRT-8’s outstanding accelerating and speed - and the braking system was specially designed to slow and stop the car safely and predictably. All four wheels feature stout performance calipers developed by Brembo - well-known in racing and high-performance circles - equipped with four pistons for even comparing performance.

Specifications
Engine
Type: V8
Displacement cu in (cc): 370 (6059)
Power bhp (kW) at RPM: 425(318) / 6200
Torque lb-ft (Nm) at RPM: 420(569) / 4800
Redline at RPM: 6400
Brakes & Tires
Brakes F/R: ABS, vented disc/vented disc
Tires F-R: 245/45 - 255/45 R20
Exterior Dimensions & Weight
Length × Width × Height in: 196.8 × 74.1 × 57.9
Weight lb (kg): 4160 (1888)
Performance
Acceleration 0-62 mph s: 5-5.5
Top Speed mph (km/h): n.a.
Fuel Economy EPA city/highway mpg (l/100 km): 14/19 (n.a.)

chrysler_300c_srt.jpg

2007 BMW Sauber F1.07 Formula 1 Car

May 20th, 2007

They’re certainly on the right path, but there’s still a way to go. After a promising debut year in Formula One, the BMW Sauber F1 Team is gearing up for the next step in 2007. In the coming season, the newly established team will continue to pursue its development agenda as planned. The sporting target is clear: more podium places in 2007. At the same time, staff expansion at Hinwil is scheduled to be completed, bringing the total workforce in Switzerland to 430. By the end of the year the new building complex will also be finished, and the BMW Sauber F1 Team will have reached its full complement.

BMW Sauber F1.07 – A Cast of Experts

Work on the BMW Sauber F1.07 concept began in April 2006 and took shape as part of a close cooperation between the chassis experts in Hinwil and their colleagues in Munich responsible for the powertrain, i.e. the engine and transmission, and the electronics. Priorities were set out from day one and all the aspects of the project brought together to create a harmonious overall package.

“We have channelled our experience with the F1.06 into the new car, but at the same time focused on the new challenges presented by the 2007 regulations”, explained Willy Rampf, Technical Director of the BMW Sauber F1 Team.

To this end, the most significant change is the switch to a single tire supplier in Bridgestone. In accordance with the stipulations of the FIA, the Japanese company has produced tires which offer less grip as a means of lowering cornering speeds.

“It’s clear that the cars are going to slide around more. It was therefore important for us to build a car that is easy to drive and that our drivers can trust sufficiently to go on the attack”, added Rampf, giving an insight into the team’s development strategy. “We should also expect the cars to run with rather greater downforce as a rule, in order to make up for the loss of grip.”

The Nose has it

As always, the key is to enhance aerodynamic efficiency. However, almost as important this year is the need to develop a package that functions as well as possible through corners.
Here, the front wing has an influential role to play, largely dictating the flow of air around the front tires. It has been completely newly developed and forms a harmonious unit with the likewise totally new nose section, which is shorter and sits higher than its predecessor. This results in a reduction in its weight, but also places extra demands on the engineers when it comes to passing the FIA crash tests. The most important aspect of this development, though, is that the wing channels a large amount of air under the car, allowing the underbody and diffuser to work to their full potential.

Engine: V8 Reloaded

Following the fundamental conceptual shift from V10 to V8 engines ahead of the 2006 season, the focus is now on the development of clever details for the Formula One powerplants of the future. In 2006 the decision was taken to freeze large areas of engine development until after the 2010 season.

Specifications
Engine & Transmission
Manufacturer & Designation: BMW P86/7
Type: V8
Displacement cu in (cc): 146 (2398)
Power bhp (kW) at RPM: n.a.
Torque lb-ft (Nm) at RPM: n.a.
Redline at RPM: 19000
Transmission: 7-speed plus reverse
Wheels & Tires
Wheels: OZ Racing
Tires: Bridgestone
Exterior Dimensions & Weight
Length × Width × Height in: 180.4 × 70.9 × 39.4
Weight lb (kg): 1322 (600) - including driver and camera

bmw_sauber_f1.jpg

2007 AT&T WilliamsF1 FW29 Formula 1 Car

May 20th, 2007

AT&T Williams launched its new race car, the Williams-Toyota FW29, for the 2007 season Formula One World Championship at the team’s headquarters near Oxford.

In addition to unveiling the team’s new race car, livery and racing identity with its new title partner AT&T, the team also confirmed a major new sponsorship agreement with Lenovo, a global leader in the international PC market. This announcement consolidates a strong winter of sponsorship activity for the team.

Technical Director Sam Michael explained, “The FW29 continues the design philosophy of the FW28 with a zero keel configuration. The other notable elements of the design include another step in the undercut of the sidepod leading edge (with top louvres for cooling), improved engine and exhaust packaging to address the reliability issues experienced in 2006 and a lower and narrower top deck for improved aerodynamic efficiency. The other prominent differences from the FW28 include large chimneys expressly for cooling at the season’s first three races and a narrower engine cover spine. At the rear of the car, a twin pillar configuration supports a lighter and lower drag rear wing, now featuring FIA-mandatory slot gap separators to prevent deflection and a lower and wider rear impact structure as required by regulation.”

The FW29 passed all mandatory FIA static and dynamic tests and features some of the new regulation safety elements such as Zylon-enhanced side impact structures to protect the driver by virtue of enhanced penetration resistance. From a driver perspective, Nico Rosberg moves forward from his rookie season having gained a year of invaluable experience. “The experience from last year is going to help me significantly this season. The F1 environment is completely unique and I have learnt how to handle all of its various elements now. In the past weeks everyone in the team has been very positive and put great effort into the new car, so I think we can be optimistic about a much improved season ahead of us.”

With the advent of a new title partnership relationship, Williams unveiled a new corporate identity, drawing on its thirty year heritage by returning to an iconic ‘W’ brand device, refreshed and re-interpreted for the team’s fourth decade of racing. The new corporate identity forms part of the new racing identity of AT&T Williams. This new identity will be universally unveiled trackside, but is reflected in the new racing livery of the FW29.

With all of these disparate elements of progress over the winter, Williams’ Director of Engineering, Patrick Head, neatly summarized the team’s approach to 2007. “Of course we start every project we undertake with the ambition of being the best, whether in engineering or marketing terms and indeed we approach every race with the sole ambition to win. But we are not in the business of predicting the year ahead as that requires me to speculate about the likely performance of our rivals. All I can say is that as an organization we exist to race and everyone in the company has shown a singular sense of purpose over the winter and so we look forward to Melbourne with anticipation”.

Specifications
Engine & Transmission
Manufacturer & Designation: Toyota RVX-07
Type: V8
Displacement cu in (cc): 146 (2398)
Power bhp (kW) at RPM: 740(552) / n.a.
Torque lb-ft (Nm) at RPM: n.a.
Redline at RPM: n.a.
Transmission: 7-speed plus reverse
Wheels & Tires
Wheels: RAYS
Tires: Bridgestone
Exterior Dimensions & Weight
Length × Width × Height in: 177.2 × 70.9 × 37.4
Weight lb (kg): 1322 (600) - including driver and camera

williams2007.jpg

Saleen S7 Twin Turbo

May 18th, 2007

Saleen knows all about power. As in S281 Mustangs, N2O Focuses and the S7, America’s first (and still the only) mid-engine exotic supercar. When it went on sale in 2002, the S7 was the only street-legal car in the U.S. with more than 500 horsepower and 500 lb-ft of torque. The media and S7 owners have raved about the car since it first smoked the rear tires in anger. And it has been recognized by numerous automotive magazines as the fastest production car in the world. But during the past three years the automobile marketplace has witnessed an explosion of performance with models from manufacturers including Ferrari, Lamborghini, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche and Chevrolet touting power numbers above the once magic 500 level.

Saleen is not an organization content to rest on yesterday’s 0-60 mph times or quarter-mile speeds. So in 2005, it was “goodbye S7” and “all hail the S7 Twin Turbo!” This is the first major change to the S7 since its introduction, and it is a big change as in 750 horsepower and 700 lb-ft of torque, numbers the competition will be chasing for a long while we predict.

Engine & Drivetrain

Designed by Saleen engineers, the S7’s engine and drivetrain incorporate the latest in modern racing technology. The new all-aluminum V8 engine casting was engineered and tooled by Saleen to displace seven liters. Redline is 6500 rpm. Space age materials and engineering are used throughout, including stainless steel valves, titanium retainers, beryllium exhaust valve seats, an aluminum throttle body, Saleen designed aluminum CNC-machined cylinder heads and stainless steel exhaust system. An exclusive Saleen-designed Front Engine Accessory Drive (FEAD) system results in an extremely compact engine, allowing for better packaging and overall weight distribution. The V8 incorporates a unique Saleen-designed side-mounted water pump, a belt-driven camshaft drive and a Saleen-engineered dry sump oil delivery system.

To feed juice to this setup, the injection system includes dual electric fuel pumps and high-capacity, return-less, 52 lb/hr fuel injectors. Neatly engineered and integrated into the S7’s stainless steel, dual, high-flow exhaust system are two, twin-ball-bearing, water-cooled Saleen-Garrett turbos, featuring 44-mm wastegates. The four exhaust pipes from each bank of cylinders merge into a race-car-like high-efficiency collector. In addition, the exhaust incorporates dual catalysts per cylinder bank, EGR and those aforementioned twin wastegates. And because Saleen believes in power and clean air, the emission control system features dual, heated oxygen sensors per cylinder bank and a high-volume evaporative emission system along with those four catalysts. Oh, and for good measure and clean air, the system is OBD-II compliant.

And if you need any more proof of how Saleen engineers sweat the details, the stroke of the already short-stroke shifter has been furthered shortened for improved shifting feel. Say that five times fast, once for each gear change.

Chassis, Suspension & Brakes

The S7 chassis and suspension incorporate decades of Saleen’s experience in racing, racecar construction and high-performance road car manufacturing. The Saleen S7 architecture begins with a space frame chassis to which honeycomb composite reinforcing is grafted. The body is structural, aerospace-quality, autoclave carbon fiber. Suspension is via fully independent unequal-length double wishbones with coilover springs, lightweight aluminum dampers (shock absorbers) and stabilizer (anti-roll) bars front and rear. The uprights at each corner are CNC machined billet aluminum, flow-through designs that use air to help cool the bearings.

Geometry changes, along with new tires, result in about a 30 percent increase in mechanical grip… which is substantial. In a seeming contradiction to current performance tire practice, the 2006 S7 Twin Turbo is fitted with “taller” tires, 275/35 R19s up front and 335/30 R20s at the rear, replacing the 275/30 R19s and 345/25 R20s fitted to the normally aspirated S7. While the Michelin Pilot Sport PS2 tires have higher aspect ratios, they also lay tire patches that are nearly an inch wider up front and almost 1.5 inches wider at the rear.

Exterior & Interior

The S7’s beautiful shape was “designed” by the wind. Optimal aerodynamics and top speed performance objectives were achieved with extensive wind tunnel work. Targets included a low coefficient of drag, optimum drag-to-lift ratio, and extreme down force. The S7 has “full tray” body sculpting underneath.

For the 2006 S7 Twin Turbo, the redesigned front and rear diffusers, along with the new rear spoiler, result in a 40 percent reduction in aero drag and a 60 percent increase in down force. Those of you who know anything about aero forces recognize the significance of that last statement. Typically, you would have to trade down force to reduce aero drag.

The mid-engine Saleen S7 has front and rear trunks and comes with Mulholland Brothers custom-made, 3-piece, fitted luggage. In true supercar style, the doors open up and away from the body.

Specifications:
Engine
Type: V8, Twin-Turbo
Displacement cu in (cc): 427 (7004)
Power bhp (kW) at RPM: 750(560) / 6300
Torque lb-ft (Nm) at RPM: 700(950) / 4800
Redline at RPM: 6500
Brakes & Tires
Brakes F/R: ABS, vented disc/vented disc
Tires F-R: 275/35 R19 - 335/30 R20
Driveline: Rear Wheel Drive
Exterior Dimensions & Weight
Length × Width × Height in: 188 × 78.3 × 41
Weight lb (kg): 2950 (1340)
Performance
Acceleration 0-62 mph s: 2.8
Top Speed mph (km/h): n.a.
Fuel Economy EPA city/highway mpg (l/100 km): n.a.

saleen-s7.jpg

2007 Nissan 350Z

May 18th, 2007

The 2007 Nissan 350Z offers a number of enhancements for the new model year, including the next generation of its award-winning VQ-series 3.5-liter V6 engine with 306 horsepower and 268 lb-ft of torque. Also added are three new exterior colors – Carbon Silver, San Marino Blue and Solar Orange. A Bluetooth Hands-Free Phone System has been added to the Touring and Grand Touring Coupe models.

Other new features for the 2007 350Z include a new front hood design, three new exterior colors, interior improvements and a Bluetooth Hands-Free Phone System (Touring, Grand Touring Coupes).

Next-Generation V6 Engine

The heart and soul of the Nissan Z, since the original 1970 model, is its engine. Every 350Z offers a new VQ35HR 3.5-liter V6 engine, which for 2007 produces 306 horsepower at 6,800 rpm and 268 lb-ft of torque at 4,800 rpm, with more than 90% of torque available between 2,000 and 7,000 rpm.

The fourth-generation VQ-series V6, which has been named one of the “Ten Best Engines” by Ward’s Auto World magazine for 14 consecutive years, has been significantly revised for use in the 2007 350Z, with approximately 80% of major parts (except bolts, O-rings and clips) redesigned.

Exterior and Interior

The 350Z Coupe takes its cues from the original 1970 Datsun 240Z – a front engine/rear-wheel drive configuration, two-seat interior, a powerful 6-cylinder engine and, like the original, features a true hatchback body.

Design cues passed on from the first-generation Z include the long nose and short deck styling, triangular cabin form and the lines extending from the arch-shaped roof to the hatchback opening. The front end’s sleek, aggressive design includes High Intensity Discharge (HID) bi-xenon (high and low beam xenon) headlights.

The Z’s strong, spine-like beltline is anchored with large, distinctive LED taillights for better visibility and quicker lighting times than conventional lights. Other standard Z body elements include an aluminum hood, distinctive vertical door handles and heated outside mirrors.

In 2006, the Z Coupe interior received new cloth seat material, new meter styling, redesigned door panel styling, revised HVAC controls, new storage space including the addition of a cupholder on each door panel, a new storage net on the passenger side footwell and the addition of steering wheel switch lighting (except base model) – enhancements that continue for 2007.

The Chassis

The 350Z’s FM (Front Mid-Ship) platform positions the engine behind the front axle, providing an optimized front-to-rear weight balance of 53/47. The FM platform, derived from racing technology, also places a strong emphasis on aerodynamics, especially on the control of airflow under the body.

The Z’s standard rack-and-pinion steering system features a vehicle speed-sensitive power assist, which provides comfortable steering effort at both low and high speeds. The system’s two orifice sets (compared with one set for traditional power steering systems) work together to generate the appropriate level of steering effort for nearly every driving condition. The orifice sets are controlled by a solenoid valve and electrical control units.

The Z’s suspension is a 4-wheel independent multilink design with extensive use of lightweight aluminum components and standard front and rear stabilizer bars.

Specifications:
Engine
Type: V6
Displacement cu in (cc): 214 (3498)
Power bhp (kW) at RPM: 306(228) / 6800
Torque lb-ft (Nm) at RPM: 268(363) / 4800
Redline at RPM: 7500
Brakes & Tires
Brakes F/R: ABS, vented disc/vented disc
Tires F-R: 225/45 R18 - 245/45 R18
Driveline: Rear Wheel Drive
Exterior Dimensions & Weight
Length × Width × Height in: 169.8 × 71.5 × 52.1
Weight lb (kg): 3339 (1516)
Performance
Acceleration 0-62 mph s: 5.8
Top Speed mph (km/h): 155 (250) - electronically limited
Fuel Economy EPA city/highway mpg (l/100 km): 19/26 (n.a.)
nissan-350z.jpg

2007 Mercedes-Benz SLR 722

May 18th, 2007

The new Mercedes-Benz SLR 722 Edition has all the attributes of a thoroughbred racing car. Refined in numerous respects, this super sports car has more output, a tailor-made suspension configuration and a decidedly sporty interior. Sale of the SLR 722 Edition in the U.S. has not been confirmed.

Continuing the Tradition

The new model variant SLR 722 Edition is a homage by Mercedes-Benz to the unforgettable victory won by the British racing legend Stirling Moss and his co-driver Denis Jenkinson in a Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR with the starting number 722 (indicating a start time of 7.22 a.m.) at the Mille Miglia in 1955. With an output of 650 bhp and a corresponding performance, the new super sports car, which goes on sale on July 11, 2006, will not only make the hearts of car enthusiasts beat faster.

The supercharged 5.5-liter V8 engine in the 722 Edition, which is hand-built in the AMG engine shop in Affalterbach, generates 650 bhp. The particular strengths of this high-performance engine are immediate response to movements of the accelerator, highly emphatic torque build-up and an unmistakable V8 sound. The performance figures are outstanding even for a high-end sports car: the 722 Edition accelerates from standstill to 62 mph in only 3.6 seconds, and 124 mph is reached in just 10.2 seconds. The top speed (209 mph) is above the 207 mph previously achieved by the SLR.

Discreet visual modifications mark the Mercedes-Benz SLR 722 Edition out as special, in line with the wishes of the enthusiastic gentleman drivers and wealthy sports car collectors who make up the core target group. The modified front spoiler with an air splitter, as well as the rear diffuser, improve both the aerodynamics and contact pressure at high speeds, and reflect the transfer of cutting-edge technology from motor racing. At the same time, the use of clear-lacquered carbon as an extremely strong yet lightweight material symbolizes the practicality of these technical features. Bucket-type sports seats upholstered in leather/Alcantara provide outstanding lateral support, while the grippier racing steering wheel with a hunting-leather lining, gearshift paddles and black carbon highlights lend a thoroughbred racing touch to the interior.

Specifications:
Engine
Type: Supercharged V8
Displacement cu in (cc): 332 (5439)
Power bhp (kW) at RPM: 650(485) / 6500
Torque lb-ft (Nm) at RPM: 605(820) / 4000
Redline at RPM: n.a.
Brakes & Tires
Brakes F/R: ABS, vented disc/vented disc
Tires F-R: 255/35 R19 - 295/30 R19
Driveline: Rear Wheel Drive
Exterior Dimensions & Weight
Length × Width × Height in: 181.6 × 74.4 × 48.8
Weight lb (kg): 3800 (1724)
Performance
Acceleration 0-60 mph s: 3.6
Top Speed mph (km/h): 209 (337)
Fuel Economy EPA city/highway mpg (l/100 km): n.a.
mercedes-slr-722.jpg

2008 BMW M5 Touring

May 18th, 2007

Powered by the back-to-back International Engine of the Year-winning engine driving through BMW’s unique seven-speed Sequential Manual Gearbox, the new M5 Touring offers a large boot space for owners needing to move sizeable loads quickly.

Performance

Powered by the same normally aspirated 5.0-liter V-10 cylinder engine as its Saloon counterpart, the new M5 Touring redlines at 8,250 rpm. 500 bhp and 383 lb-ft of torque propel the car from zero to 62 mph in 4.8 seconds (only 0.1 seconds slower than the Saloon). Without the 155 mph electronic limiter the new M5 Touring would be capable of achieving 200 mph while still transporting the largest of loads.

This balance of ultimate practicality and performance is summed up by Lee Connolly, BMW UK’s Product Manager for the new M5 Touring: “The M5 Touring will be the perfect car for delivering supercar owners’ luggage to their holiday homes in France or Spain. Usefully, their luggage will arrive before they do!”

Transmission

These levels of performance are in part made possible by the world’s first seven-speed Sequential Manual Gearbox with Drivelogic in a production car. The gearbox features eleven different change patterns to offer the driver a personally-tuned driving experience - six settings vary speed and response of gear change in a manual mode and there are five automatic modes. A Launch Control function delivers the fastest possible acceleration from standstill.

Traction

Like the Saloon, the new M5 Touring features a three-stage DSC+ traction control system. The default mode offers drivers high levels of performance and stability. M Dynamic Mode allows an enthusiastic driver the ability to push the M5 Touring to, and beyond, the absolute limits of traction, permitting some sideslip and countersteering before the system cuts in and is selected in the M Drive Manager (see below). If the DSC button is pressed, DSC+ is completely disengaged.

BMW M’s variable M differential also offers the highest levels of driving stability and traction, especially when accelerating out of high-speed corners, with up to 100 per cent of drive being transferred to the rear wheel with most traction. Finally, the Electronic Damper Control (EDC) system offers three suspension settings to complement the prevailing driving conditions.

M Drive Manager packages these programmable settings, so that the touch of a single button sets the car up as required. Like a boy visiting his favorite sweet shop, the M5 driver can select his preferred settings for power, gearbox, EDC and DSC modes, Head-up Display and the degree of Active Seat bolster support, via the iDrive menu. One touch of the M Drive button on the steering wheel then selects the desired combination and instantly changes the character of the car. One moment the M5 Touring is a placid and practical family car, the next it’s more akin to a track day special.

Specifications:
Engine
Type: V10
Displacement cu in (cc): 301 (4941)
Power bhp (kW) at RPM: 500(373) / 7750
Torque lb-ft (Nm) at RPM: 383(520) / 6100
Redline at RPM: 8250
Brakes & Tires
Brakes F/R: ABS, vented disc/vented disc
Tires F-R: 255/40 ZR19 - 285/35 ZR19
Driveline: Rear Wheel Drive
Exterior Dimensions & Weight
Length × Width × Height in: n.a.
Weight lb (kg): n.a.
Performance
Acceleration 0-62 mph s: 4.8
Top Speed mph (km/h): 155 (250)
Fuel Economy EPA city/highway mpg (l/100 km): n.a.

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