A truck is a motor vehicle for transporting goods. The word "truck" comes from the Greek "trochos", meaning "wheel". In America, the big wheels of wagons were called trucks. When the petrol engine driven trucks came into fashion, these were called "motortrucks". Slowly the word motor in front of truck disappeared.

Honoring Breast Cancer Awareness Month wouldn’t be complete without paying some respect to a group of people that have done their own tribute for BCAM.

Meet the ‘Guardians of the Pink Ribbon’ and their unique rides, pink fire trucks. Now, before you say “hey, what’s so exotic about pink fire trucks?” consider first the circumstances. This group of police officers and firefighters travel across the country for the sole purpose of raising awareness for breast cancer, which is what we’re trying to do, except on a much, much more miniscule scale.

Pink Power 5: The Pink Ribbon Tour

The group is led by Dave Graybill, a firefighter from Arizona, and what they do is they tour the country to collect signatures on their pink fire truck from breast cancer survivors and their supporters.

This year, they’ve christened their tour as the “Pink Heals Tour ‘09”, which officially kicked off last September 12 in Las Vegas and will go on until their final stop on Halloween night back in Scottsdale, Arizona.

The whole project was started by Graybill to honor and pay respect to all those women afflicted with breast cancer. In his own words: “We, who have not been affected, let’s put on our t-shirts, strap our belts, pull up our pants, and let’s go rally and start supporting our women. I’m asking all men to wear pink to honor women in their fight against cancer. I’m asking police chiefs, fire chiefs, politicians, as leaders in the country, show your women you love them.”

We may not be any of the above, but we hear your message loud and clear, Mr. Graybill. Thank you for what you’re doing.

Ford releases details about the new 6.7 Liter Power Stroke Turbocharged Diesel V8

Ford has just revealed earlier today their new 6.7 Liter Power Stroke V8 Turbocharged Diesel Engine that will replace the current heavy duty diesel engine supplied by Navistar. The new engine will make its debut in the next-generation F-Series Super Duty trucks.

The capability and reliability found in the new 6.7 Liter diesel engine starts with the engine block. The new Power Stroke’s block is made from compacted graphite iron (CGI), which is about twice as strong as regular gray cast iron. While this is the first use of a CGI block in North America in this class of vehicle, Ford has successfully used the material in engine blocks in other products around the world.

Perhaps the diesel mills extended range due to its alternatively fueled nature would make it the perfect candidate to power the next Ford SVT Raptor to another strong finish at Baja. However due to the U.S. market’s dislike for the less refined crude product it would be hard to imagine this engine in anything other than a dedicated work truck.

Press release after the jump.

Posted on by Terence 2

The Mercedees Benz G Wagon celebrated it’s 30 anniversiry this year, and Hamann is celebrating by giving the Austrian military’s favorite fast attack vehicle a birthday present in the form of a complete makeover, both inside and out of this G55 AMG as well as under the hood. Owners can choose from either a mild 35 HP upgrade, or go all out with the HM 600 performance kit that beefs up the 5.4 Liter engine with a blower to produce 600 HP and 576 lb-ft of torque, and like we said before, can go from 0 to 60 MPH in 5.1 seconds and hit a top speed of 162 MPH. Pretty impressive for an all-terrain machine.

Hamann tunes the Mercedes Benz G55 AMG

From the outside, Hamann has upgraded the Typhoon with an oversized grill, carbon fiber for the mirrors, door handles and fender vents. There is a new front spoiler that lowers the front end of the vehicle giving it a more sporty appearance, just like the rear wing. The most impressive features of the Typhoon are the rims, measuring in at 24 inches in diameter, not only are they huge, but the black offsets the cream exterior perfectly.

The interior has been recovered in plush red fabric on the door panels, headliner, armrests and seat inserts. The interior is further dressed up with a few carbon fiber trim pieces as well as a couple more red accents. Aside from the wild materials, for the most part, the Typhoon’s interior is exactly like it left the factory, the perfect compliment for any tuner. So if you feel like celebrating along with the boys at Hamann, give them a ring and see what they can do with your G wagon.

Posted on by Terence 2

It is nice to see that Ford has a few good women working on their high performance products. The automobile industry is one where you would expect to find a group of men sitting around a drafting board talking about wheelbases and horsepower, but thanks to SVT NVH engineer Hether Fedullo, the blue oval’s latest high performance off road machine is everything that it can be. Ms. Fedullo’s love for cars started early on when she would watch Formula 1 races on Sunday mornings with her father or “The Dukes of Hazzard” on her own time. She went on to get a degree in Mechanical Engineering from Virginia Technical University and interning with the Ford Motor Company simultaneously.

Once Hether graduated from college she went to work full time with the Dearborn based automotive conglomerate as a power train engineer before being moved into Ford’s Specialty Vehicle Team where she specializes in controlling the noise, vibration and harshness that comes with a high performance ride like the Ford Raptor . “NVH orchestrates the vehicle,” Fedullo said. “You could compare us to the conductors of the symphony. Like the conductor orchestrating the symphony, we figure out what the customer should and shouldn’t hear, and help the engineering team implement that plan.”

Her role was key to dampening all of the unwanted noises found in the Ford Raptor ; “For instance, when developing Raptor the team worked to gain an intimate understanding of the customer and what they wanted. We made sure to assign attributes to meet those needs… we tuned the truck for great off-road performance without comprising the on-road experience.” So we say thank you to Ms. Fedullo for being part of the development of a great product and the Ford Motor Company for giving women the ability to thrive in the automotive world.

Press release after the jump.

Optimus Prime is fast becoming the world’s most famous robot celebrity. If the Autobot’s starring role in Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen didn’t get him enough attention, his guest appearance on the Late Show with David Letterman certainly did.

The leader of the intergalactic robots is slowly becoming a household name and enthusiasts are starting to come out of the woodwork. Take this 1997 Peterbilt 379 truck that is being sold on Ebay by a man who we can only imagine is a Transformers fanatic. The truck comes complete with the exact same design elements Optimus Prime has in the movie. Painted in the same red and blue color scheme, the truck also has the same alternating red and blue flames painted on its body.

Continued after the jump.

Source: Ebay

The sad demise of Pontiac is a true American tragedy, not just because the brand is associated with everything that is American, but because it could’ve been salvaged if it’s parent company, General Motors, was in a strong financial position.

Unfortunately, the economic crisis laid waste to the auto industry and obviously, there were some casualties, with Pontiac Pontiac being one of them. It’s a pity because the brand was on the verge of coming out with a number of vehicles that could’ve easily been successful if there was just enough support given to them. One of the vehicles that Pontiac launched amid much fanfare was the G8 Sports Truck , which was unveiled at the 2008 New York Auto Show.

Pontiac had stirred up excitement with a marketing program that asked consumers to name the future the Americanized version of the popular Holden Ute from GM Australia. The doomed automaker had a few fun offerings in the works, but just couldn’t get them into showrooms fast enough. What could have been had General Motors had more time and financial resources?

Continued after the jump.

Posted on by Terence 22

Top Speed had the pleasure of trying out a greener option for that other necessary item in any weekend racers garage, a work truck. Sure its nice to have a classic Ferrari or a an all out race car in your garage, but what good are they if you cannot get them to an appropriate environment. That is where our GMC Sierra 2WD Hybrid Crew Cab comes into play, this pick up can haul up to 6,100 pounds of trailer and seat six individuals inside the cab. Aside from the nice touches like the 18 inch chrome rims and larger than life front grill, the Sierra Hybrid has the benefit of being an alternatively fueled vehicle.

The full sized trucks 2-Mode Hybrid/Electric power train is tuned to get as much as 21 MPH when driving around town, impressive for any vehicle that weighs over 5,000 pounds. Don’t let the size discourage you, the Sierra Hybrid is easy to drive and the power adjustable front seat allows the driver to find the perfect vantage point.

The truck uses a combination of an electric module and a 6.0 Liter Chevrolet small block to make 332 HP, but you most likely won’t have to use much of those ponies, we found ourselves driving the Sierra around on electric only power most of the time, negating the need for any of the eight pistons. It was nice to know that they were there when we needed them like when passing on the highway or pulling a heavy load. One thing was for certain, the GMC Sierra Hybrid is working hard to give trucks a good name again.

Continued after the jump.

Posted on by Terence 3

We recently received a GMC Sierra Hybrid pick-up to try out in our Top Speed test fleet. First thing first, this truck is big; from the Hybrid two-mode badges, to the front bench, everything is huge. One of the best features of this Sierra is the lack of Hybrid badging everywhere. The Sierra is toned down compared to the Chevrolet full size hybrids. The Tahoe Hybrid has the word written in at least six places throughout the truck’s body and glass panels, the Sierra on the other hand has a pair of simple badges on the front fenders (thankfully they don’t have the gaudy Hybrid grills from the Escalade ) and another toned down "two-mode Hybrid" badge on the tailgate.

Powered by a 6.0 Liter Vortec V8, the Sierra has plenty of get up and go. The only thing we have yet to test is the full sized pick-up’s towing ability, but with the added torque of the electric motor, that shouldn’t be a problem.

The Sierra hybrid is the perfect fleet vehicle. It has seating for up to six, lots of storage capacity and because it’s a hybrid, cities and businesses will be open to all sorts of tax breaks. With the way that new car sales are going, anyone who wishes to have a fleet of Sierra hybrids has good reason to bargain.

Stay tuned for the upcoming review of the GMC Sierra Hybrid to see just how green this gas/electric pick-up really is.

Posted on by Terence 11

Have you ever wondered how meteorological scientists study tornados? Well this is an instance where the movies didn’t lie to you. Just like in the film Twister, tornado researchers drive vehicles directly into the path of the storm and release “pods” that take scientific measurements and capture data for the researchers to study.

Real life twister hunter Dr. Joshua Wurman was looking for a vehicle that he could use for the VORTEX2 tornado research study, a vehicle that could withstand heavy rain, hail, flash flooding and washed out roads. What he chose was the HUMMER H3T to be the lead vehicle in the largest tornado study ever conducted.

The elevated ground clearance and ability to ford up to a 24 inch flood made the H3T the perfect vehicle for the job. Dr. Wurman was quoted as saying that “we can send the Hummer into places where we haven’t sent our other probe vehicles before.”

You can follow the Hummer Storm Chaser at the link below for updates and a twister inspired blog.

Source: Hummer
Posted on by Terence 12

What exactly does the high-performance R/T badge mean. In the 1960’s on musclecars like the Dodge Coronet it meant Rapid Transit, I’ve also heard that it meant Real Trouble for anyone who would dare to challenge any Mopar at the strip or at a streetlight. In the 1990’s with the birth of the Viper it meant Racing Technology. But today on our 2010 Dodge Dodge Ram Ram Sport, the R/T badge stands Road/Track, and although I couldn’t imagine any Chrysler Engineers clocking a Nurburgring time I’m sure the new coil spring rear suspension should be up to the job. One thing is for sure; the restyled aggressive exterior would be right at home in any NASCAR paddock.

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