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Passenger Car

Passenger Car

With summertime about halfway over and fall bearing down on all of us, the thought of taking the summer tires off of your beloved ride in favor of all-season rubber that just doesn’t perform the same is depressing. With exception to us southern-state dwellers, you need a set of tires that can handle the rain, snow and ice that the winter, fall and spring present us, and most summer tires simply can’t handle the elements. Well, Michelin has an all-new all-season tire that packs summer tire-like stickiness with an all-season design and features: the Pilot A/S 3.

This all-new Pilot Sport tire uses a special blend of silica to help enhance the "sticky" feeling of the tire and a tread design that helps jettison water from under your car’s footprint. The combination of water channeling and extra silica really helps the tire bite down on the road. Additionally, variable-thickness sipes on the outer section of the tread help break up the tension in the water and then lock together to create maximum rubber contact to the asphalt.

When it comes to tires, you cannot base purchasing decisions on sheer performance, unless you have tons of money to blow. You also have to consider how long the manufacture guarantees the tire will last. Most summer tires don’t include a mileage warranty and most all-season tires with any sort of warranty are too hard to perform well. Michelin obviously found a nice balance with the Pilot A/S 3,as these shoes come with a 45,000-mile warranty.

A truly unique feature on the A/S 3 that surprises even me - a seasoned expert in the tire industry - is Michelin’s Helio Compound, which helps the rubber retain its soft and sticky properties in cold temperatures. This is a frequent complaint of all-season tire users, as it can take seemingly forever for your tires to get up to temperature on a cold day. Not only does this increase cold-weather grip, but it also increases comfort in cold weather.

You can snag up these tires now between the sizes of 175/65R15 and 285/35R20, which covers cars ranging from the Fiat 500 to the 2013 Mercedes-Benz SL65 AMG . Once we get our hands on a set of them, we will let you know just how well they do, so stay tuned!

Click past the jump to see detailed videos on these all-new tires and the crazy tests they underwent.

Posted on by Thomas Nelson 4

The BMW GT (Gran Turismo) family has been growing steadily since the introduction of the 5-series GT in 2010. Earlier this month we saw what will become the 6-Series Gran Coupe which seems to be the more mature GT car. Now Munich has been busy working on a Gran Turismo version of the 1-Series and it was recently spotted with camouflage. From what we can gather, it almost looks like a Nissan Versa that has been stuck in the copier then blown up about 25%. The very upright frame combined with a somewhat dull rake helps accent this look.

This baby Beemer is slated to hit the market in 2014 (in either three or five door models) and according to Car and Driver , this hatchback will most likely be powered by turbocharged three and four cylinder engines that "will produce anywhere from 75 to 200 horsepower." This power will be routed to the - gasp! - front wheels. While BMW-philes will scoff at this drivetrain, the Chairman of the Board for BMW Norbert Reithofer pointed out "... For these new vehicles we could envisage developing a common architecture for both front- and four-wheel drive.”

When this hatchback appears on the market it will offer stiff competition from the Mercedes B-Class as well as the VW Golf . It will give consumers a more luxurious option than the Golf and, after the engineers from Munich have fretted and fiddled with the suspension and powertrain, it will make this tall hatchback live up to the BMW reputation.

Posted on by Thomas Nelson 2
BMW 7-Series

Usually unflappable German engineering has taken a hit today. BMW has announced that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has initiated an investigation that centers on 120,000 2002-2008 7-Series models, ranging from the 730d to the 760li. This investigation began after a 2006 7-Series experienced an incident in which, after being placed in park, did not fully engage the park gear and proceeded to roll a short distance. This gearbox is designed to automatically shift into park, for example, when the vehicle is turned off.

If this pending investigation makes you nervous, keep in mind that the NHTSA has said that a) "thus far, no cause has been identified for any of the rollaway incidents" and b) it is not a full scale recall, just a preliminary investigation.

You may ask us, would we still buy one? Well, we have nothing but praise for the 7 series. We find it to be truly staggering, leaving us to shake our head in disbelief that a car the size of the state of Kansas can be made this fun to drive. This potential gearbox glitch does not affect our view of the Roundel and we continue to look reverently upon each model. This full size luxury sedan did not disappoint us and it won’t let you down either.

Source: NHTSA
Posted on by Thomas Nelson 17

When we buy a car, we want it to make us feel special. Now that the Fiat 500C has hit our shores, it’s easy to see that this convertible has excelled in this aspect. It combines the fun of a convertible and the ease of use of a compact car. You feel so happy when driving the 500C it should be categorized as an anti depressant. With such a cheap and cheerful car, you would expect it be made of plastic and have the same cosmetic qualities as an outhouse. As soon as you peek inside and out, you are amazed.

The 2012 Fiat 500C promises all the fun and style of the Fiat 500 with a convertible drop top that lets you soak up the glorious sunshine. The amazing thing is a fully loaded 2012 Fiat 500 C is the same price as a base model MINI convertible. We just looked up thew word value in the dictionary and not surprisingly, it showed a picture of the 2012 Fiat 500C.

Details on the Fiat 500C after the jump.

Posted on by Alex Damian

Features The Acoustic Alterra Technology creates a luxury tire with a tread pattern that minimizes noise and provides a comfortable ride. A Symphony of Luxury and Comfort The ContiPremierContact features a Tri-net Silica tread compound which provides improved traction in dry, rainy and winter driving conditions. Long tread life with lower rolling resistance for increased fuel economy is also a benefit. Ultra-wide, four groove tread pattern provides a luxurious ride with better braking (...)
Posted on by Alex Damian

Features The ContiProContact features unparalleled wet-braking capacity and year-round traction. This tire performs with outstanding handling, control and high-speed capability. Straight circumferential groove for greater water evacuation and outstanding braking on wet surfaces. Central rib reduces tread pattern noise level for a quiet ride. Optimized shoulder lug stability for enhanced steering response. Optimized sipes with defined radius create an interlocking effect for improved (...)

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