safety

safety

It seems General Motors is not the only automaker busy recalling cars these days. German manufacturer Volkswagen has ordered U.S. and Canadian dealers to halt sales for about 800 units of its 2015 Golf and Golf GTI hatches, quoting front suspension issues. Sure, 800 cars is nothing compared to the millions of vehicles GM has to fix, but we’re talking about a brand-new and highly acclaimed model.

Although Volkswagen has sent notifications to stop 813 Golfs from leaving U.S. and Canadian dealer lots, 1,634 hatches affected by this problem have been already sold to North American customers. The stop-sale order sent to dealerships says the "front stabilizer links in the affected vehicles were installed with too little torque," which could cause them to come loose detach entirely, affecting the car’s steering, Automotive News reports.

According to Jalopnik, the German automaker plans to notify the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration of the defect, meaning owners will soon receive a recall notice. The affected hatches will have their faulty front stabilizer links replaced at no cost to the customers. Volkswagen is not aware of any crashes and injuries as of 07/08/2014.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Volkswagen Golf GTI.

It’s no longer a secret that the 2015 Mustang is one of the most technologically advanced vehicles to come out of Detroit. It also represents huge step in Mustang history and brings many firsts to the 50-year-old pony. The sixth-gen model is the first Mustang — sans the Cobra model in years past — to gain an independent rear suspension that promises to improve its handling on both the street and track.

The new suspension will also move the Mustang closer to European competitors like the BMW M4 , an important switch now that the muscle car is ready to hit the Old Continent on official terms. What’s more, the 2015 Mustang is the first pony to adopt a more familiar look in the Ford lineup, as the company’s trademark, trapezoidal grille makes its way onto the nose.

Then there’s the 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine. Sure, this isn’t the first time a Mustang gets a turbocharged four-banger — it happened back in the 1980s too — but it comes in a era in which fuel economy and CO2 emissions are crucial in just about every market except the Middle East . And let’s not forget about the line-lock system , a gimmick that allows drivers to perform burnouts without destroying the car’s clutch. We also call this button the "warranty eliminator," as pressing it allows Ford to assume you raced the Mustang, resulting in dealers having reason to void your warranty.

As impressive as it may sound, the 2015 Mustang is set to receive even more innovative features, one of which is an industry-first on a production car.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Ford Mustang Safety Systems.

Like most Italian supercars, the Lamborghini Aventador is no stranger to fires, with one example burning to a crisp somewhere in California a couple of years ago . More recently though, a roadster version caught fire in Australia, this time during a media demonstration on the Philip Island race track.

Shipped from Italy to Australia for prospective customers and automotive journalists to get a taste of its capabilities, the brand-new Aventador Roadster caught fire before the end of its first track day.

According to a report coming from Drive, the vehicle was being driven by a Top Gear Australia editor when flames started to come out from behind the cabin. The drive pulled over immediately, as instructed by the Lamborghini staff at the track, to allow for the fire to be extinguished.

Obviously unhappy with the embarrassing incident, Lamborghini asked those attending the Philip Island event not to write about it, the reports notes, adding that "at least one media outlet was forced to delete video footage and image of the Aventador burning."

There’s no official word as to what may have caused the flames to erupt, but people attending the event have told Drive that the supercar caught fire due to an oil leak on the exhaust. Lamborghini has commenced an investigation, but stressed that the incident wasn’t provoked by any issue in the design or construction of the Aventador.

Click past the jump to read more about the Lamborghini Aventador Roadster.

Source: Drive

Hyundai has put in the work to turn the 2015 Genesis sedan into a bonafide contender in the four-door luxury segment normally dominated by the likes of the BMW 5 Series and the Mercedes E Class . But the Genesis is knocking loudly on that door and with all the new safety technology added into the 2015 model.

To prove that its new four-door luxury sedan has all the tools to give BMW and Mercedes something to worry about, Hyundai decided to showcase the 2015 Genesis’ newest safety features in some pretty hairy safety stunts. Hyundai driver Rhys Millen was given the task of driving a Genesis with completely blacked-out windows, which meant that one he was inside the car, his senses of the outside world becomes pretty much eliminated. Millen’s only saving grace was the Genesis’ new safety features.

It’s hard to be impressed whenever an automaker performs a stunt claiming this and that, all while operating under the caveat that said stunts were organized and prepared for. But in this case, we can’t help but admire how Hyundai built up the Genesis’ safety credibility by having Millen drive the car.

Performing stunts without the benefit of seeing anything took a lot of guts, but Millen, who’s no stranger to driving for Hyundai, showed exactly why the 2015 Hyundai Genesis is one luxury car that customers should be very interested in.

Check out the two other videos after the jump.

BMW has a rich history of building safety cars for some of the world’s biggest racing series. This year, the M4 Coupe has joined Beamer’s safety car family when it made its debut at the start of the 2014 DTM season.

The M4 Coupe joins the 1 Series M Coupe , the M3 , the M5 , and the M6 Gran Coupe in that list of BMWs that have been commissioned for safety car duties. That’s an impressive list, and to help celebrate the occasion, the M4 Coupe DTM Safety Car was given all the bells and whistles to successfully serve its purpose.

Obviously, the M4 Coupe DTM Safety Car is based on the road-going model. That being said, a lot of the usual components of the road version have been taken out in favor of installing the necessary safety equipment as required by FIA regulations.

It’s a comprehensive modification that clearly was done for a specific purpose, just like the past BMW models that have been lucky enough to see duty as safety cars at one time or another.

The development of the M4 Coupe DTM Safety Car was also a case of good timing for BMW. There’s no better way to usher in the era of the M4 Coupe DTM Race Car than having one of its own in front of the pack – one that’s responsible for a lot more than just winning races and making podiums.

Click past the jump to read more about the BMW M4 Coupe DTM Safety Car

If you happen to own one of the most beautiful mid-size sedans on sale, the new Mazda6, you may want to get to your dealer really quickly. Mazda and the NHTSA are recalling more than 19,000 2014 Mazda6 models for issues with the fuel system.

Now what happens is actually little awkward, but apparently you can put too much gas inside the tank. The back pressure that should build up to shut off the pump doesn’t do so at a low enough volume. Sure, you could accidentally spill some fuel and ruin your new shoes, but the real concern is a much different issue.

Image you fill up your car on a nice, crisp spring morning, and the temperature is a brisk 45 degrees. If you have that tank too full and the temp gets hot outside, all that fuel will begin to expand. According to the NHTSA, that fuel could find its way into the charcoal canister which is a part used for improved emissions. Yes, that means fuel is going near the exhaust system. Last time I checked, hot metal and gasoline was a pretty reliable recipe for making fire.

All it takes to fix is a quick adapter in the tank shut-off valve, and it shouldn’t take very long to fix. Just make sure you get into your Mazda dealer to have it done. You don’t want your car to burst into flames because you were too lazy to see a dealer, do you?

Read more about the Mazda Mazda6 sedan after the break.

Crash safety is an important thing and vehicles these days are safer than ever before. But the auto industry took a hard hit when the Institute of Insurance and Highway Safety recently released its review of 11 subcompact minicars for the 2013 and 2014 model years.

Out of 11 cars tested in the IIHS’s small overlap crash test, only the Chevy Spark received an “acceptable” rating while the other contenders got lesser scores of “marginal” or “poor.” None of the cars earned the best rating of “good.” With the Spark’s advantage in the small overlap test, combined with its “good” ratings in the IIHS’ other crash tests, the Spark was awarded a 2014 Top Safety Pick.

The small overlap test has gotten its share of flack since its introduction in August 2012. Automakers complain the test wasn’t announced far enough in advance for new models already in development to accommodate the new crash standards. It appears the Honda Fit , Fiat 500 , Hyundai Accent , Nissan Versa , Mitsubishi Mirage , and the Toyota Prius C were the ones who missed the memo – all scoring the lowest score of “poor.” The Ford Fiesta , Toyota Yaris , Kia Rio , and Mazda2 fared a bit better with a score of “marginal.”

Mind you, the small overlap crash is only one test out of several conducted by the IIHS including the moderate overlap and side impact. Clicking past the jump will shows the complete video chronicles of the 11 mincars.

Click past the jump to watch the IIHS crash these 11 minicars

Tech Review: Automatic Link Makes Diagnostics and Driving Data More Streamlined

Car insurance companies are always trying to find some way to better monitor your driving style and habits to help adjust their premiums accordingly. In fact, yours truly fell for the Progressive scam of plugging a small transmitter into the data port on my Mazdaspeed MX-5 with the promise that I could “save up to 30 percent.” Well, this little gadget sensed every time I tapped the brakes a little too hard or pushed my little turbocharged roadster into a corner just a little harder than usual, then it would beep and upload this information to the company.

Well, after noticing what this gizmo was up to, I quickly unplugged it and overnighted it to Progressive with a thanks-but-no-thanks letter. Well, now more insurance companies are getting into the tracking game with even more technology. In fact, State Farm has taken it a little further by installing an app on your Android 4.0 (or higher) smartphone. According to State Farm this app will collect “basic information about your driving,” but the insurance giant doesn’t offer a bit of info about what it will use this data for.

So, why would you allow your insurance company to track how, when and where you drive? Because they grease your palm, of course; State Farm is offering up a $50 gift card to the first 5,000 volunteers to give up their driving privacy and test the system. In fact, you don’t even have to be a State Farm customer to do this test and get the $50.

We say stay away from this deal and the insurance tracking devices altogether, regardless of how much they choose to offer you in return. Chances are that this information could potentially jack up your car insurance just because you park in a less-than-ideal area semi-frequently or brake a little harder than others. Plus, having your insurance company knowing what you’re up to at any given time is pretty dang scary.

What’s next, health insurance companies strapping devices on us to monitor our food intake and exercise?

The Toyota GT 86 sure is getting a ton of mileage ever since it was introduced last year. The sports coupe’s popularity in the market has even given Toyota the justification to build a special edition GT 86 that celebrates the automaker’s participation at the VLN Endurance Championship this year.

What it didn’t tell us was that the GT 86 Cup Edition would also serve the role as the VLN Endurance Championship’s official pace car, as shown in the pair of photos that were released of the heavily dressed GT 86 Cup Edition.

Officially, it’s called the GT 86 Cup Edition Pace Car and it comes with some features that are unique to it. Thanks to TRD, the GT 86 Cup Edition Pace Car received a new rear diffuser, front and rear aprons, new side skirts, a bigger trunk-lid spoiler, quad exhaust pipes, a stabilizer set, a carbon-fiber strut bar, and last but not least, exterior foil wrapping that separates it and distinguishes itself as the series’ official pace car.

As far as power goes, the GT 86 Cup Edition Pace Car will carry the same 2.0-liter inline four engine that produces 200 horsepower and 151 pound-feet of torque with a 0-to-60 mph time of 7 seconds and a top speed of slightly over 143 mph.

Click past the jump to read about the Toyota GT 86 Cup Edition

Over the past 15 years, BMW has been the official safety car of Moto GP. The partnership has lasted that long and judging by the recent unveiling of the new safety car for the 2013 season, the bond between BMW and Moto GP are as strong as it’s ever been.

This year, the official safety car of the Moto GP season is a BMW M6 Gran Coupe . Sporting the traditional BMW safety car colors of white matched with strips of red, blue, and light blue, the 6-Series Gran Coupe Safety Car looks like it’s ready to lay down the safety standards for the 2013 season.

Considering that competitors will be on high-powered bikes, this 6-Series Gran Coupe also has a powertrain - a 4.4-liter V-8 twin-turbo engine - that can match wits with those two-wheeled rockets. That engine is good for 560 horsepower and 502 pound-feet of torque, and mates to a seven-speed M double-clutch transmission. This provides the M6 Gran Coupe a 0-to-100 km/h (62 mph) time of 4.2 seconds and an electronically limited top speed of 155 mph.

The BMW 6-Series Gran Coupe Moto GP Safety Car is ready to hit the track when the season officially kicks off this weekend at the Grand Prix of Qatar.

BMW has built a lot of safety cars over the years. Check out a couple of other models that also served as Moto GP safety cars after the jump


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