technology

technology

  New technologies are everywhere and especially in our cars: ABS, airbags, lane change detection, GPS and more...

Pioneering technology is a phrase that’s being thrown around rather loosely in the auto industry these days. But every so often, it applies to something that could potentially be really groundbreaking. For its part, Land Rover seems to think that it has something groundbreaking with the world’s first Transparent Bonnet concept.

Really, the name of this new technology is pretty self-explanatory. The bonnet, or hood, as we like to call it here, allows what Land Rover explains as a "new level of driver awareness". What that means is the hood provides a "see-through" augmented-reality view of the terrain ahead, making it easier for drivers to navigate around less-than-ideal conditions.

Land Rover accomplished this by putting cameras in the Discover Concept’s grille to capture data that will then be fed to a Head-Up Display inside the cabin of the vehicle. With it, the driver can see an unobstructed "see-through" view of the terrain. It’s never before done in the industry, making it that much more intriguing for everybody, us included.

The Transparent Bonnet concept is expected to be shown at the 2014 New York Auto Show with the Discovery Vision Concept . Rest assured, we’re going to keep a close eye on this new technology and see where Land Rover takes it from here.

To say Tesla is the world’s leading automotive start-up of the last 90 years would be a gross understatement. The company has done extremely well for itself, considering its mere 10-year existence and two-model lineup. Now solely producing its second product — the Model S — Tesla is on the forefront of all-electric car design and manufacturing. The Silicon Valley company can pin the majority of its success on the shoulders of its founder and CEO, Elon Musk.

CBS 60 Minutes correspondent Scott Pelley recently sat down with Musk for an interview about Tesla. “Well, I didn’t really think Tesla would be successful,” Musk answered regarding how he could start a car company and be successful at it. “I thought we would most likely fail. But I thought that we at least could address the false perception that people have that an electric car had to be ugly and slow and boring like a golf cart.” That sort of tenacity seems to be a driving force behind Musk’s inability to think small. “If something’s important enough you should try. Even if you [think] the probable outcome is failure.”

The Model S has shown an electric car can be successful inside the U.S. It’s so successful, in fact, Tesla is having a hard time keeping up with demand, turning out 600 cars each week, despite a few fiery setbacks. Musk is even planning a $5 billion factory to be built within the U.S. for constructing enormous amounts of lithium-ion batteries. With the eventual lowered cost of battery production, Tesla’s next major goal is producing an all-electric car costing roughly $35,000, making the company and its technology open to a far greater number of consumers.

Click past the jump for more info on Elon Musk’s other projects

Knowing the technology that goes behind the development of a car like the 2015 Ford Mustang is important to understand why the car is what it is: a powerful piece of American engineering designed to thrill Mustang aficionados young and old. One of the more important elements about the development of the Mustang outside of its performance numbers is in the aerodynamic front, something Carl Widmann, the Mustang’s Aerodynamics Manager, touched on in this video.

The Mustang might look like an aggressively-designed muscle car that pays homage to its sporty spirits, but it’s no accident why the car was built that way. Take for instance the Mustang’s sharp nose, which Widmann describes as "forward-facing," allowing it to trap the flow of the air as it goes across the top, thus improving the car’s aerodynamic functionality.

If you’ve ever wondered why the Mustang can perform the way that it does in a seemingly uninhibited fashion, the answer lies in its aerodynamic features. It might be too complicated to understand for some people, but once you watch this video of Widmann describing the innovation in all its glory, you’ll begin to understand that the start and end of aiming for aerodynamic tightness is tantamount to building the perfect performance vehicle.

Click past the jump for the video and more details on the 2015 Ford Mustang.

Air. This simple combination of oxygen and nitrogen is one of the most difficult factors for designing a high-end supercar . It needs to be routed to the engine for combustion, funneled to various systems for cooling and it is used for downforce to keep the car stuck to the road. For most of the 20th century, designers had to make compromises to one of those systems to improve the other. You had to cut downforce to reduce drag and increase speed, or you had to increase drag to provide better brake cooling. Now though, we have active aerodynamics. The engineer’s solution to have your air-based cake and eat it too. For the most technical demonstration of active aero any production car to date we need to look no farther than the new One:1 from Swedish supercar maker Koeingsegg .

Using a complex collection of vents, flaps, motors and hinges the 2015 Koenigsegg One:1 can completely alter its aerodynamic profile and performance.

Read on to find out about all of the advanced aero technology on the Koenigsegg One:1

I don’t know about you, but this video just blew my mind. If you haven’t watched it already — spoiler alert! — Chevrolet had issues with the new Z/28 braking and cornering so hard, it would literally spin the tires around the rims. Originally, the development team though the rotation was only occurring by a few degrees, but after marking the tire’s location on the wheel, they found it rotated nearly 360 degrees while lapping the test track.

To solve the issue, Chevrolet tried several ways of locking the tire’s bead to the wheel, including coating the inner wheels with abrasive paint. Nothing stopped the problem, so the team took a media blaster to the inside of the wheel. The tiny grains of sand ate away at the smooth surface and created a slightly pitted, coarse surface for the Pirelli P Zero Trofeo R tires to grip. It’s an ingenious solution to a hidden problem that negatively affects lap times and braking performance.

When the top-dog Camaro Z/28 hits dealers this spring, it will arrive with 505 horsepower and 481 pound-feet of torque coming from its naturally-aspirated 7.0-liter, LS7 V-8. Through the Camaro ZL1 makes more power at 580 horses and 556 pound-feet, the Z/28 is a faster track car, thanks in large part to its reduction in weight. Heavy use of carbon fiber and lightweight glass, along with a lack of many creature comforts, the Z/28 drops some 300 pounds from the ZL1’s curb weight.

Video and more about the Chevrolet Camaro Z/28 after the jump.

Car junkies know how hard it is keeping a car clean from pollen, bird crap, rain and the occasional cat prints across the hood. Using a car cover seems like a logical idea, but can be worthless if you’re using the wrong type of covering. Turns out, there’s more to buying a cover than just finding one that fits your car.

It all depends on what elements you’re trying to keep away from your car and where it’s stored at. Manufacturers make covers designed for specific uses like indoor dust covers, outdoor protective covers, waterproof covers that guard against moister and mildew growth, and even sun-proof covers. They’re all designed to protect from different threats and all have their pros and cons.

Click past the jump to see the cover in action.

Mercedes is rolling out an all-new nine-speed automatic transmission slotted for fitment within the brand’s sedans and wagons, starting with the E 350 BlueTEC . Mercedes says the transmission will not only help conserve fuel, but will decrease in-car NVH levels and reduce exterior noise pollution, while providing smoother shifts at faster intervals than the outgoing seven-speed 7G-TRONIC transmission it replaces.

While its just now becoming available in the E 350 BlueTEC, the 9G-TRONIC will become common across the Mercedes lineup. Expect to see the unit find a home within the S-Class next, followed by C-Class , and possibly the CLA-Class . Engineers designed the transmission to be compatible with rear- and all-wheel-drive application, and even mild and full-hybrid systems. Basically, the 9G-TRONIC will be Mercedes’ bread-n-butter ‘box.

To meet the wide range of demands, engineers built the transmission to shift quickly and smoothly without any overly-perceivable shift points in its normal mode and sharp, direct shifts when placed in manual — and even more so in S mode. The gearbox is also able to shift over multiple gears for fast acceleration and deceleration. For example, the 9G-TRONIC can shift from 9th gear to 5th gear if the driver floors the accelerator. Conversely, the transmission can seamlessly shift from 3rd gear to 9th gear after a hard acceleration run up an interstate on-ramp.

What this means for performance, both on the track and in between gas stations, is simple: more gears equals lower revs when cruising and therefore increased fuel efficiency while faster shifts mean quicker overall performance numbers.

Click past the jump for more info on the 9G-TRONIC and the E 350 BluTEC

A car that drives itself. That’s the dream, right?

For the longest time, though, it has remained as such: a dream. But a lot of automakers are beginning to tinker with the idea of an autonomous driving vehicle, and one that has been at the forefront of that is Renault .

The French automaker’s Next Two Autonomous Prototype is the culmination of years of testing and development. We probably shouldn’t even say culmination because the project is still a long ways away from being completed, but we all know where this is going.

Renault is developing a vehicle that could drive itself, similar to what we saw from the Jetsons back in the day. It still doesn’t fly — one technology at a time! — but having a car that drives itself while everyone on board gets to check their social media accounts?

That’s a pretty good start, right?

Click past the jump to read more about Renault Next Two Prototype

Source: Renault Blog

The day has finally come when Chevrolet is building flying cars. Maybe not quite like George Jetson’s ride, but at least in our eyes, it’s far more exciting. Engineers developing the 2014 Camaro Z/28 programmed in a “flying car” mode into the car’s Performance Traction Management system to compensate for the sudden loss of traction if the car goes airborne over a cresting hill like those found along the 12.9 miles of undulating tarmac at the infamous Nürburgring.

Rather than letting the PTM cut torque to the rear wheels due to a decrease in traction like it normally would, the Z/28’s driver can engage “fly car logic.” The system works by using the ride-height sensors to detect when the suspension is fully decompressed and the tires are no longer in contact with the pavement. When that scenario occurs, the PTM is temporarily disengaged allowing full torque to continue to the wheels. Milliseconds after landing, the system returns to normal and continues to manage the 7.0-liter V-8’s 505 horsepower and 481 pound-feet of torque.

Chevy says “flying car logic” gives the Z/28 up to a five-second advantage on the car’s overall lap time around the ‘Ring, which is currently recorded at 7 minutes, 37 seconds.

“Flying car logic” is available in all five PTM modes, but is said to be most effective in Mode 5, the most hard-core track setting. Even without GM’s Magnetic Ride Control, the Z/28 easily outruns the Porsche 911 Carrera S and Lamborghini Murcielago LP640 around the Nürburgring. It also outguns its Camaro ZL1 cousin by a four-second margin.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Chevrolet Camaro Z/28.

If I told you that something fast, powerful and very light was going to be unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show , you wouldn’t be surprised. But what if I told you that thing wasn’t a car, but was actually a laptop. That might get your attention.

Razer, purveyor of all things awesome for PC gamers has teamed up with Koenigsegg , creator of some of the fastest cars in the world, to create a special-edition version laptop. The laptop in question is a customized version of the Razer Blade.

Based on the design of the Koeingsegg Agera R , this special-edition Blade laptop has a black finish with bright green "fang" design surrounding a Koenigsegg shield logo. Aside from the looks, this is one of the most powerful laptops you can get on the market. It comes loaded with all the latest hardware from Intel and Nvidia. Only fitting for a machine wearing the Koenigsegg name.

The Razer Blade is more than a powerful gaming machine, it has been designed with a focus on lightness and thinness. The Blade is actually the thinnest gaming laptop in the entire world. The entire machine is thinner than the diameter of a dime.

The laptop will not be for sale in any traditional manner, instead Razer will give away two of these special laptops to a pair of fans in celebration of the collaboration. Additionally, we are sure that certain Koenigsegg owners and "fans of Razer" will be given the machines.

If you’d like to enter to win the powerful laptop, you can enter here.

Click past the jump to read more about the Koenigsegg Agera R.


Back to top