It’s official that Italian automaker, ATS, is coming back and in full force. Back in the 1960s, ATS began its short, but storied, history as a racecar manufacturer, then quickly turned to manufacturing road-going cars when racing fell through. Well, we have already seen the road-going ATS model, the 2500 GT, and now we are going to have a look at the other end of the spectrum, the race-ready ATS Sport 1000.
The thing about racing is that it is not always about massive power. In most road races, it is more about agility, acceleration, and fast-revving engines. Judging by some of the details on the ATS Sport 1000, this car certainly meets and even exceeds some of the expectations of a racecar. So, can this up-and-coming automaker really produce a successful racecar and road car at the same time?
To figure that out, we need to have a look at what makes this car tick.
UPDATE 11/11/12: ATS has officially announced pricing details for the Sport 1000. If you’re a little nervous about how much it’s going to cost, don’t be. It was a little cheaper than what we initially expected.
Click past the jump to read our full review on the ATS Sport 1000 and find out if it has what it takes to dominate the racing world.
It seems a little weird that the people behind this three-minute video - producer Brenden Kent and director Paul Greg - spent six months putting it all together, but after watching it, you’re going to understand why it was all worth the wait.
Using an iPhone, an app called Stop Motion HD, and a number of custom-made rigging systems, Kent and Greg managed to produce Nitro Warriors. It features little, performance enhanced plastic toy cars doing their best high-octane toy car chase that would make the people behind Need for Speed stand up and take notice.
The scene is a living room where a Ford Mustang is being chased around by an army of police cars on a busy highway. When that chase ends in failure for the authorities, they sent out a car that can match wits with the Mustang: the Chevrolet Corvette ZR1. Check out the video and find out how Kent and Greg spent the most worth it six months of their lives creating a three-minute toy-car chase video.
Nitro Warriors is worth your time, folks. Take it from us.
Between 1994 and 2004, Michael Schumacher was the driver to beat, as he won seven F1 Driver’s Championships during that span. After retiring following the 2006 season, Schumacher took a cushy “Advisor” position with Ferrari. It was clear that racing was not out of Schumacher’s system yet and he returned in the 2010 season to race for Mercedes GP. Schumacher never regained his form and endured very rough 2010, 2011, and, thus far, 2012 seasons.
Well, after finding out that Lewis Hamilton was taking over his slot at Mercedes in 2013, we all pretty much assumed he would fade off into retirement. It didn’t take long for Schumacher to confirm our assumptions, as he just announced this morning that he will retire (again) following the 2012 racing season. There was some speculation that he would head to Sauber to take the place of Sergio Perez, but that is apparently a no-go.
Schumacher, in a cheeky manner, poked fun at himself via the Associated Press, by saying “…at some point it’s time to say goodbye and this time it might be forever.” Well, we wish Michael all of the best and we thank him for his 18 years of involvement with F1. We’re sure he’ll back his way into management somewhere – possibly even with Mercedes, who just signed the new Concorde Agreement. Regardless of the last three years, he will forever go down as one of the best drivers to ever grace open-wheel racing.
We’ll keep an eye on Schumacher’s movement and let you know if he is considering moving back behind the scenes as he did with Ferrari.
Click past the jump to read Michael Schumacher’s press release.
When Toyota Motorsport GmbH developed the TMG EV P001 specifically to set the electric vehicle lap record at the Nürburgring, we knew Toyota was onto something special. Then it released a follow up to the P001 specifically to run in the 2012 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb and set a new EV record of 10:15.380 up the hill, and we were simply blown away.
Toyota then decided it was time to put the P002 to the test and see if it could beat the P001’s record-setting time around the `Ring. The P002 did not disappoint, as it smashed the P001’s record by 25 seconds, placing it in the top-15 times ever on the Nürburgring (at the time).
With the TMG EV P002 firmly situated in the history books, we felt it was the right time to take a closer look at this purpose-built race car and see what it’s like under the microscope.
Click past the jump to read our full review on the TMG EV P002.
At the Paris Motor Show, Motor Trend had a very telling sit down with Porsche CEO, Matthias Müller, about several of the upcoming models. This interview not only uncovered the fact that the entire lineup will be undergoing a facial and rump redesign, but also that a new, ultra-powerful hybrid drivetrain will grace the Cayenne in 2014. Almost missed amongst this plethora of new Porsche goodies was a statement by Müller that Porsche is hoping for a sub-7-second time around the `Ring,
If you recall correctly, the 918 Spyder recently screamed through the Nürburgring at an unreal 7:14. When asked about what this awesome time means to the 918, Müller said “That means this car will be a huge – huge – milestone for Porsche. One year ago we had a target of 7:20-7:22 or something. Last week one of our engineers drove one lap in 7:14. The record is 7:11. So I suppose at the end of the year, we will have a new record at the Nürburgring.” The record in question is not the overall record, but rather the major automaker record, now held by the 2010 Viper ACR.
Müller was later asked how fast he thinks the 918 Spyder can lap the `Ring and he replied “If we’re lucky, it will be under 7minutes… but, I don’t know, we’ll see.” With the overall Nürburgring record, held by the Radical SR8 LM, sitting at 6:48 might Porsche be shooting for the overall crown too?
To drop 11 seconds from the 918’s current lap time will be quite a feat and to drop 23 seconds – the time needed to match the record – is downright impossible. To hit the sub-7-minute mark, however, Porsche would need to turn its attention to creating an all-out racing version of the 918 and scratch its attempts to keep it a true production model.
Doing the rough math, the record-holding Radical SR8 lapped the ring with a 0.632 horsepower/kg rating and Porsche estimates that the 795-horsepower 918 with the “Weissach package” weighs just 1,665 kg. That puts the 918 at a 0.447 horsepower/kg rating. This means, in theory, Porsche needs to do one of two things to even come close to the SR8’s heels. The two options are either drop the 918’s weight by an additional 407 kg, which is nearly impossible, or increase its output to about 1,050 horsepower. The latter certainly sounds like the more obvious and possible route. We, of course, cannot take into account vehicle handling and driver skill, as those two variables can sway significantly based on track conditions and other uncontrollable variables.
We’ll keep an eye out to see if Porsche can really pull this off.
After a successful run with McLaren, Lewis Hamilton became likely the hottest free agent in recent F1 history. There was a lot of debating and speculation that Hamilton had already signed with Mercedes, who only just recently signed the Concorde Agreement after rumors that it may leave F1, and that McLaren refused to match. It looks as if all of the Hamilton-to-Mercedes rumors were true, as Mercedes has officially announced the signing of Hamilton through the 2016 season.
This signing comes on the heels of McLaren, Hamilton’s former employer, announcing that it had signed the up-and-coming Sergio Perez. An unfortunate byproduct of Mercedes bringing in this young blood means the old blood, in the form of Michael Schumacher, is out of a job. There is some speculation that Schumacher will head back into retirement, but other rumors are placing him with Sauber, taking the spot vacated by Sergio Perez’s jettison to McLaren. Ah, and the evil circle of F1 continues…
It is up for debate as to whether Mercedes or McLaren got the better end of the deal, as you have a proven talent in Hamilton who had some struggles last year. But on the other hand you have the 22-year-old Perez with an impressive three podium trips last year and is heading into the prime of his career.
Either way, both Mercedes and McLaren got their guys and both Hamilton and Perez will likely continue strong in the coming years. Also announced today by Mercedes is that 3-time F1 champ, Nikki Lauda, will join Mercedes as a non-executive chairman.
Australia’s V8 Supercars Series is one of the most unheralded, yet ultimately exciting, racing series in the world. Long being the turf of Ford and Holden, the 2013 season will see the invasion of international automakers like Nissan and Mercedes-Benz.
But if these two brands are to make an impression, they’re going to have to go past old guard Holden and its new Commodore V8 Car of The Future Race Car. Built and co-developed by Walkinshaw Racing, the new Commodore stands in the way as the old guard that’s ready to put the newbies in their rightful place.
The matte finish carbon fiber body with matching gold accents offer a study in intimidation akin to the colors of Lotus. Power, on the flip, comes from a Chevrolet sourced 5.0-liter V8 engine that produces north of 600 horsepower, enough kick to give new participants a rude awakening yet efficient enough to meet Car of the Future racing regulations.
Needless to say, the new Commodore V8 Car of the Future Race Car is a mighty contender to keep the title on Australian soil. Any of the new - and foreign - automakers will have to deal with this Australian powerhouse if it hopes to make a successful run at the V8 Supercar Series next year.
Electronic Arts (EA) has released a new video about Need For Speed that details the Most Wanted Single Player campaign, as well as the Fairhaven City. This is the home of the 10 Most Wanted drivers, who stand in your way of becoming the Most Wanted. With all of the cars being available at the start, if you can find it, you can drive it.
The game comes with an Easy Drive system that allows for truly seamless driving experience with no pausing necessary. This system will offer the players the possibility to drive or go directly to a race’s starting line, and swap cars and performance mods without having to leave gameplay or leave the open-world behind.
The all new features of Autolog 2 will help you earn Speed Points which contribute to unlocking performance modifications and secure your rank on The Most Wanted List.
Hit the jump to watch Need for Speed Most Wanted Multiplayer Trailer.
We are all waiting with baited breath for the release of the Porsche 918 Spyder and every little bit of information we get is quickly gobbled up and processed. However, we had yet to hear any real track numbers for this awesome hybrid machine. Sure ,we know that it will boast an 795-horsepower drivetrain that uses a 4.6-liter V-8 gasoline engine and a pair of electric motors and will hit 60 mph in just about 3 seconds.
Still, that just is not enough information for us, but we just got our first taste of real life track information on the 918 Spyder and it’s all good. It recently completed the Nürburgring Nordschleife lap and pulled in a time of 7:14. Depending on the fractional seconds, this will place the 918 Spyder as the fifth, sixth, or seventh fastest car to ever take on the Nordschleife lap.
In addition, this puts it a full 18 seconds faster than the touted Carrera GT that it replaced. One thing to keep in mind is that the 918 that tested on the ‘Ring and got the fastest time was equipped with what Porsche calls the “Weissach package.” According to what we hear, this package includes upgraded brakes, a 6-point harness, air-conditioning delete, radio delete, and other weight-saving measures, so don’t go thinking that every 918 Spyder under the sun will lap the bankrupt, yet safe, Nürburgring.
Now with our whistles wet with fresh 918 details, we can rest easy for the day knowing that the 918 at least performs on the track as we have always hoped and expected.
Rarely do we get a chance to really dig into new braking systems, as the modern hydraulic system has very little room left for improvement. Typically what we run into is cars simply adding more pistons to the caliper, like the 6-pot units found on the Lamborghini Aventador, or larger rotors to help disperse some heat.
Industry front-runner, TRW, is finally getting closer to releasing an all-new braking system that should render the aging hydraulic system obsolete. This Integrated Brake Control (IBC) system will eliminate the need for a master cylinder, brake booster, valves, electronic stability control, and all of the related wires, hoses, and pipes, to replace it with a single unit that does it all.
The IBC uses a brushless electric motor to activate and deactivate the brakes in accordance to the driver’s input. This system can also use the vehicle’s computer system to activate and deactivate the braking system, so it will also help streamline the self-driving cars that are right over the horizon. In order to keep the natural feel of the current hydraulic brake systems, TRW is planning to fit a secondary hydraulic system that accepts the driver’s input.
According to TRW’s research, this system gives “remarkable braking performance and ESC capability.” It is also capable of placing one g of decelerating force on a car in just 150 milliseconds – yeah, that’s fast.
Not only will this system translate into better braking performance and integrate ESC and braking into one clean unit, but it is also good for a 3 kg (6.6 lbs) in weight savings. That may not seem like much on the surface, but in the market as it is today with supercars heading into exotic metals just to save 100 lbs over their competitors, a 6.6-pound savings in the braking system is a huge deal.
According to the presser, this system should be ready and in vehicles by the 2016 model year. We are willing to bet that it makes it into only high-end racing cars first and street cars will follow suit after successful testing in several racing series.
Click past the jump to read TRW’s full press release.