We last caught the revised version of the Mercedes B-Class testing back in September, and it looks like Mercedes has taken it out for another testing session, this time on the roads of Germany.
As you can see, only the front and rear don light camouflage, which means that these are the parts that Mercedes is likely updating. We certainly were not expecting anything major from this update, which is clear from the camo, but this revision should be enough to keep the B-Class fresh for the next few years.
Included in this revision will be a new headlight and taillight design, a new grille, and new front and rear bumpers. You should also expect some minor improvements inside the cabin and under the hood. The under-hood updates will likely focus on improving the fuel economy figures.
By now, the tragic news of actor Paul Walker’s untimely death on Saturday, November 30 has spread throughout the media and its audiences. Walker’s involvement in a fiery car crash in Santa Clarita, California and the details surrounding it have been well covered. What many may not see is Walker’s intense commitment to helping people in need the world over through a charitable organization he started in 2010.
Reach Out Worldwide began as a heartfelt response to the tragedies seen following the massive January 12, 2010 earthquake in Haiti. Walker visited the country as part of a disaster response team and felt the calling to continue such philanthropic work on his own. Upon his return, he and a group of friends and started ROWW, whose philosophy is, “by making a difference in just one person’s life, the world has been changed for the better.”
The non-profit organization quickly grew into Walker’s dream of “filling the gap between the availability of skilled resources and the requirement for such personnel in post-disaster situations.” ROWW enlisted the help of doctors, nurses, firefighters, heavy-equipment operators, project planners, and others in building a network of volunteers with the ability to respond to worldwide disasters. The organization even attracted the help of companies like STIHL – America’s number one selling brand of gas-powered, handheld power equipment, like chainsaws – who donates equipment to the team.
To date, ROWW has assisted in the recovery efforts following the earthquakes in Haiti and Chile, the Typhoon in the Philippines, the Tsunami in Indonesia, and tornadoes in Illinois, Oklahoma City, and Alabama. Currently, ROWW has members deployed to the Philippines in response to Typhoon Haiyan, which made landfall in early November.
As many of the news reports mentioned, Walker was attending a “charity toy drive and automotive social gathering” on Saturday just minutes before his death. The charity aimed to gather toys and funds to help economically disadvantaged children the world over, and especially in the current Philippine disaster zone.
Paul Walker died not only an accomplished actor and active automotive enthusiast, but more importantly, a legendary philanthropist and activist for just causes and hurting people worldwide. He will be sorely missed.
Click past the jump to see videos of Paul Walker in action with ROWW
The rotary engine was the brainchild of German engineer Felix Wankel, and Mazda was the first automaker to put the Wankel invention into production vehicles. Mazda has been producing rotary engines and using it to power its cars since 1963, despite its few drawbacks. Over the years, the company has worked on this concept to make even better rotary engines, which culminated with the Renesis series of naturally aspirated rotary engines.
Since the demise of the Mazda RX-8 , the company has put the rotary engine production on hold as newer models moved onto cleaner and more efficient powerplants. Today, the rotary engine does not appear in any Mazda product. An now, the only car maker in the world that has embraced the Wankel engine might be on the verge of putting it to rest for good. We hope that does not happen but that’s what new CEO at Mazda, Masa-michi Kogai alluded to in an interview with Automotive News.
In an interview with the publication, Masa-michi San emphasized on the commercial proposition of the rotary engine. The company would have to generated a sales volume of 100,000 units per year in order to make the rotary engine a viable business option. Masa-michi San also said that generating profits for the company will be a priority and sticking with rotary engines does not seem to be the right path to take, at least for the moment.
The previous boss at Mazda Motor Corp. had hinted at a possible rebirth of the rotary engine in a future hybrid vehicle. The engine would be used to generate electricity to charge a set of batteries. Since then, we haven’t seen a single concept or even an official blurb from Mazda , which begs the question, have we seen the last of the Mazda Wankel rotary engines?
Youtube user Shmee150 managed to catch another great video, this time if a Pagani Huayra along with a Zonda S on the race track.
The two cars were caught at the Goodwood Motor Circuit for a filming session and along with the short racing session, the video also shows them revving their V-12 powerplants, plus a number of flybys down the main straight.
As a reminder, the Huayra is powered by a 6.0-liter, twin-turbo V-12 engine that delivers a total of 700 horsepower and 730 pound-feet. This output is enough to sprint the car from 0 to 60 mph in just 3 seconds and up to a top speed of 220 mph. On the other hand, Zonda S is a little bit less powerful with an output of just 540 horsepower. Even so, it still sprints from 0 to 60 mph in just 3.7 seconds.
Check out the video to see which of the two models sounds the best!
BMW has been on the forefront of research and development of Eco-friendly mobility for the future. The company has invested heavily in cleaner, more efficient propulsion technologies. The recently launched ’i’ sub-brand has been the result of years of development in order to provide futuristic, efficient and Eco-friendly products at affordable costs.
The "electric car " as we know it, has been evolving at a rapid pace, and with advancement in battery technology and "wonder materials," like carbon-fiber, we could be on the brink of a steady switch to electric mobility. BMW is convinced that electric cars are the future of motoring and will concentrate their efforts in this direction.
Board member of development at BMW , Herbert Diess, was speaking to Autocar on this subject. Electrification, according to him, is imminent and fueling the growth of the electric car would be newer, more stringent emission regulations. The automotive sector is among the most regulated businesses today, and government policies would play a major role in deciding the future course of the automotive scene. Europe would be the epicenter for this as has been the case since medieval times
Having said that, there has been no change in the BMW philosophy of "sheer driving pleasure." Until recently, electric cars’ lack of appeal and character, along with a high asking price, had kept the common public away from the idea of owning one. The performance-crazy half of the populous have seen the potential of the electric car and have slowly began to accept the idea.
The BMW i8 is an example of a performance-oriented electric car concept. It combines numerous futuristic technologies into a highly desirable and unique automobile with BMW driving DNA. Same is the case with the BMW i3 , albeit on the other side of the spectrum.
European emission regulations call for reducing carbon and particulates to 95 g/km and meeting these standards would call for more electric-drive technologies. Stricter regulations would mean Europeans would most likely be the first to see these technologies in daily use. Already, modern BMW cars feature a combination of hybrid drive and conventional engines. A point will be reached when further reduction in CO2 emission would be difficult. This would eventually require us to shift to 100 percent electric drive.
The BMW i8 has shown the way and future BMW models would be fitted with entry-level electrification. Plug-in hybrids and hybrids would soon become the norm dictated by emission regulations. Full electrification would be the ultimate goal as we try reduce our carbon footprints down to acceptable levels with respect to the global environment.
Today we come to you with a heavy heart with the announcement that Paul Walker, one of the stars of the Fast and Furious series, has died in a car crash. Earlier on Saturday, there were rumors that he had perished in a car accident, but the horrible news was confirmed Saturday at 10:14 p.m. on his official Twitter page.
According to the report and witness statements, Walker was a passenger in a red Porsche Carrera GT , which was driven by a friend of his. The car was apparently speeding, per the Los Angeles Sherrif’s Department’s report, and it slammed into a light pole.
By the time EMTs and other emergency personnel arrived on the scene, the Porsche was engulfed in flames. Walker and his friend, whose name was not released, were pronounced dead at the scene.
Paul is survived by a 15-year-old daughter and leaves millions of Fast and Furious fans with a heavy heart. Numerous Fast and Furious cast member expressed their emotions through various social media sites, including Vin Diesel, Chris "Ludacris" Bridges and Tyrese Gibson. He was just 40 years old...
Update 12/1/2013 10:20 a.m.: Reports are suggesting that the driver of the Porsche was Roger Roda, who was a close personal friend of Walker’s and a professional racecar driver who had participated in the Pirelli World Challenge. The crash occurred following a charity event that the two attended.
All this bankruptcy talk has left a bitter taste in our mouths. Fortunately, one of the companies that filed insolvency proceedings earlier this year has managed to get itself back in order.
Wiesmann took the step of filing bankruptcy back in August. Anytime something like this happens, the first thought immediately goes to the future of the company, or whatever future it has left.
But after a few months of being relatively quiet, Wiesmann has announced that it has filed an application to dismiss its bankruptcy filing, putting an end to what would’ve been a pretty sad end to the German specialty marque.
The company’s management has scheduled a meeting with creditors on December 16 to talk about the company’s future, something we hope is a lot brighter now than it was back in August.
Hopefully, more news of this sort comes out of all those other troubled brands. At least Wiesmann was able to get its act together; here’s to all the others following suit.
Click past the jump to read about the 2013 Wiesmann GT MF4-CS
If you are not a big soccer fan, then the Andre Wisdom name says pretty much nothing to you; well, don’t worry you are not the only one. Long story short, the 20-year-old Wisdom plays for Derby Country, UK.
He may be top notch at putting a ball past the goal keeper, but his driving skills definitely need a little "refinement."
Last week he found himself in a bit of "trouble" while trying to find his way to Pride Park for his team’s match with Sheffield Wednesday. Apparently, Wisdom stopped at a shop to buy some drinks before the game, and, as he was unfamiliar to the place, he set the coordinates of the Pride Park to his Porsche Panamera ’s navigation system.
The only problem is that instead arriving to Pride Park he ended up on a very muddy road where he got his rather pricey Porsche stuck. Fortunately, he was discovered by a mountain biker six miles from Pride Park and a Jeep Cherokee came to tow the luxury sedan from the deep muck.
Let;s just hope that he is better at playing soccer than realizing he is driving down a road that the Panamera simply is not equipped to handle.
Click past the jump to read more about the Porsche Panamera Turbo.
Everyday, thousands of new cars, trucks , vans , and SUVs roll off assembly lines the world over. They represent the newest technology and innovation their respective manufacturer has to offer, and for many buyers, will be the second-largest single purchase they make following their house.
But what happens to a vehicle once its life on the road comes to a stop? The latest infographic from gocompare.com details just how automotive recycling programs are cutting back on unused waste and reintroducing the market with quality recycled materials by shredding the old family sedan for all it’s worth.
Before the recycling process can begin, all fluids are drained, tires are removed, and special equipment like mercury switches and batteries are sent off for separate recycling. The tire-less, dry vehicles are then crushed and ground up. The fist-sized chunks coming from the grinder are then sorted, depending on material. At this point, roughly 15 to 25 percent of the vehicle is considered waste and enters a landfill, with the large remainder headed for further processing.
Plastics and metals are two of the largest reclaimed materials from recycled vehicles. In fact, recycled vehicle plastics save roughly 24 million barrels of oil annually in the U.S. alone. Metals like iron and steel are separated with magnets while copper and aluminum are separated by weight. Car batteries are also a highly recyclable material and can yield up to 97 percent of its original lead content in the process.
Automotive recycling is big business in America with over 12 million vehicles processed annually. Recycling is a $22 billion dollar industry and growing. That growth helps conserve resources and reduce landfill waste while expanding job growth the world over.
Audi plans to expand its lineup in the near future in an attempt to strengthen its grip on the premium car realm. According to André Konsbruck, the director of Audi UK, in the future we could see a series of high-level cars based on the recently launched concepts , like the Audi Quattro and Nanuk .
While none of the two concept were officially confirmed for production, Konsbruck said that both of them have the production viability required to become reality. Also, he said that potential customers were invited to test and evaluate the two concepts, in an attempt to see "if there is a business case for them to be made."
"Every concept we show has production possibilities, and these cars are no different. I can see a future where we aim to deliver different, innovative premium cars that people aspire to own, such as these."
If the two concepts hit production, they will be offered as niche models, with a pretty high price, but they will "deliver on the brand image and build the desirability of the brand as a whole."
Click past the jump to read more about Audi Nanuk.