Fiat Chrysler’s Head of Design, Ralph Gilles, Pushes Burning Car Away From A Car With Two Trapped Occupants
Fiat Chrysler Head of Design Ralph Gilles is being hailed as a hero after saving two people from potentially getting burned after a three-vehicle crash in the suburban Detroit area. According to the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office, a 2013 Ford Fiesta collided head-on with a 2013 Ford Edge in the early hours of Sunday morning. While the two vehicles were idle in the roadway, a 1997 Buick LeSabre broadsided the Fiesta, pushing it into the Edge where the latter ended up catching fire. The driver of the Edge was able to exit his car, but the two people who were inside the Fiesta found themselves trapped inside their car with the Edge blocking their exit. That’s when Gilles came into the picture, saving the couple from a potentially fatal situation.
Tesla Model S, Apparently On ’Autopilot,’ Crashes Into Culver City Fire Truck At High Speed
One unlucky driver down in Southern California found the limits of their Tesla’s Autopilot system this week when it rear-ended a stationary fire truck on the freeway. The incident was documented on social media in a post by the Culver City Firefighter’s Twitter account: “While working a freeway accident this morning, Engine 42 was struck by a Tesla traveling at 65 mph. The driver reports the vehicle was on autopilot,” the post reads. “Amazingly, there were no injuries! Please stay alert while driving!”
Lucky indeed. The fire truck’s rear end is a bit out of shape, but nothing major by the look of it – just a few broken taillights and a slight bend to the rear platform. The Tesla, however, looks like it’s toast, with the entire front end bunched up in a twist of metal and broken parts. We’re also a little incredulous about the whole “65 mph” claim, as something tells us the automatic braking brought the speed down substantially. Either way, kudos to Tesla for making such a safe car. Without that huge crumple zone up front, who knows what would have happened to the driver.
This is just the latest in a series of auto accidents involving the Tesla Autopilot system. We don’t know for sure if the driver is outright blaming the technology for the crash, but either way, it certainly seems like an easy way to absolve yourself of responsibility.
Of course, Tesla is quick to point out that running Autopilot doesn’t mean relinquishing control of the car. Although it does have the potential to one day reach full autonomy status, Autopilot is basically just glorified cruise control at this point. Drivers must still remain in control of their vehicle at all times. That said, the convenience and power of Autopilot seems to be leading to distracted driving and misconceptions about the system’s intended use.
Tesla Employee Crashes Model 3, Charged with DUI After Run-in with a Deer
A Tesla employee found himself in hot water after crashing a Model 3 in California. Adding insult to injury, the man, identified as 38-year-old Colin Flynn, was also charged with DUI.
Flynn’s harrowing adventure occurred in the early morning of Saturday, January 13. According to police reports, the Tesla employee overshot a turn on a road in Morgan Hill, California, sending the car flying around 70 feet before crashing into the far bank of Coyote Creek.
Local police arrived shortly afterwards to find Flynn, unhurt from the crash. The Tesla told the police that the crash occurred after he swerved to avoid a deer, and not because he reeked of alcohol smell. The police asked him to take a breathalyzer test, and when he refused, he was arrested on suspicion of DUI and transported to the local precinct. Once there, Flynn also refused to have blood work done, as required by California law in cases like this. That discretion earned him a charge of obstruction. It wasn’t until officers obtained a search warrant that Flynn decided to cooperate.
As for the Model 3, the electric car was eventually removed from the creek after spending a few hours retrieving it. Authorities also advised all drivers to keep a lookout for the deer that supposedly caused Flynn to fly his Model 3 into the bank of a creek.
Most importantly, don’t drink and drive, folks.
Amazing Video – Crash Testing A Koenigsegg Regera
When it comes to the very tippity top of the supercar and hypercar pyramid, it’s easy to forget that, at the end of the day, these incredible machines are still cars. You know, like real physical objects that exist in the world, as opposed to, say, time machines or inter-dimensional spaceships or hopes and dreams. And, as actual physical objects, these cars sometimes run into things, and because they have ludicrously powerful engines, they sometimes run into things really friggin’ fast. The point, if you’ve stuck with me this far, dear reader, is that supercars and hypercars need to be crash tested, and as a result, we get awesome videos like this.
Watching a $2 million, carbon-fiber-everything bedroom poster get smashed and bashed in a battery of tests is entertaining, no doubt about it, with the poor coupe getting the raw end of the deal from just about every single angle. Hell, the testers even took a giant sledge hammer to it, swinging for the fences on the bumper and under carriage. They also slammed the scissor doors a few times and ran over a curb at speed.
All told, it looks like Mr. von Koenigsegg and crew did a fantastic job, as the Regera appeared to take it all in stride. As a reminder, the Regera comes equipped with rear-/mid-engine twin-turbo 5.0-liter V-8 pumped up by no less than three electric motors. Peak output is rated 1,797 horsepower and 1,475 pound-feet of torque, all of which is sent to the rear axle by way of a high-tech fixed-gear transmission. The sprint to 60 mph takes 2.7 seconds, with the top speed electronically limited at 255 mph.
His Angel Was Riding Shotgun: Chevy Corvette Z06 Crashes into a House
Turned on its side, a wheel missing, various engine items thrown about, and the passenger seat ejected. How any person could walk away from such a horrific crash is mindboggling, but that’s exactly how things went for the unknown driver of the Chevy Corvette Z06 that you see above. As of now, details are scant, but a handful of pictures posted by Thomas Minnear on Facebook show the aftermath of a crash that was likely facilitated not only by speed but by excessively worn tires as easily noticed by shots taken of the tire that came off during the accident. Even without an official police report, it’s pretty easy to see that the driver of this car was quite lucky to have walked away.
Mr. Minnear posted what has to be the most relevant comment of the year along with the photos: “I’d say his angel was riding shotgun.” That’s pretty much an understatement considering the fact that the driver has reportedly walked away and, had there been a passenger (other than a guardian angel, of course,) they probably wouldn’t have been so lucky. In the end, the driver’s ego is tarnished, his car destroyed, his angel scared shitless, but in the end, he and those in the house still have their life, so you could say things managed to work out. Keep reading to hear our thoughts and see a full gallery from the accident.
Watch A Brutal Crash At The ‘Ring Involving Over A Dozen Cars: Video
We all know the Nurburgring is one of the most dangerous tracks in the world. Mixing maximum speed with huge elevation changes, blind corners, and highly technical challenges, it’s no wonder Jackie Stewart dubbed this place The Green Hell. Throw in a slick racing surface and open lapping with amateurs, and things can get really ugly. Case in point, this 2-minute, 8-second video showing a first-person perspective of an incident that occurred earlier in the month, wherein a group of cars create a massive pileup around a fast section leading to Hatzenbach. After spotting cars stopped on track and a huge cloud of smoke, the driver shooting the video pulls off to the outside of the track, exiting his vehicle before attempting to flag down incoming cars and warn about the impending parking lot. Some cars manage to avoid crashing, while others spin out helplessly. One Porsche even slides backwards into the stationary racer that the cameraman had exited just moments prior.
The video was originally posted to Facebook by RE FS420, and has been making the rounds on the internet ever since. According to BridgeToGantry.com, the original cause of the incident was a blown coolant hose on a 911 GT3 RS, which spilled fluid on the track, resulting in several drivers losing control. In total, 14 cars were involved, with two drivers requiring hospitalization, one of which needed to be cut free from his Audi and airlifted to emergency care.
It’s a chilling reminder of what can go wrong when pushing a car to its limits. Stay safe out there, folks.
Friday The 13th Special – Unlucky Cars
Whether you’ve got a nasty case of triskaidekaphobia, an unbridled passion for slasher movies or you’re just a little superstitious, seeing Friday the 13th pop up on your calendar can elicit a sense of dread and gloom. October is the second month of 2017 to see the 13th day fall on a Friday; the first having already passed us in January. But, the question is this – is there any truth to the bad-luck association? The Dutch Centre for Insurance Statistics would say no, given a study it released in 2008 that found the average rate of traffic accidents in the Netherlands actually fell on Friday the 13th, presumably because people drove more carefully or simply chose not to drive at all. Regardless, it got us thinking – what car stuff out there is considered unlucky?
After poking around a little bit, we found a couple of excellent examples from the world of motorsport, as well as a few statistics to consider before buying that used car you’ve been eyeing. And, we wanna know – what unlucky car stories do you have? Tell us all about it in the comments below!
Continue reading for some unlucky car stories.
In-Car Footage of Ferrari 488 Challenge Crash Hits Us Right in the Feels
I think back to the days before I could drive… to the days when my only real experience behind the wheel involved sitting in front of a big-at-the-time-screen TV playing the very first Gran Turismo on my Playstation. I was just 13 years old when the game came out, and maybe I had taken a few short joyrides before that point in life, but nothing like grabbing the wheel, slapping the pedals, and shifting gears like I would learn to love later in life. As such, going to the races with my old man meant dragging out the cooler, grabbing some food and beer, and spending the day at the track. For him, it was all about the sport, the driver, the man who reigned supreme on that day. For me, it was more about seeing the cars crash. Of course, that was back before I could really appreciate what a travesty this can be when it happens to the wrong cars, but when you’re young, that’s the most entertaining part. Fast forward to today, and seeing a $300,000-plus makes my manhood hurt, my heart stop, and my eyes tear up. After all, seeing a beautiful exotic meet its maker isn’t exactly for someone with a weak stomach.
And, that brings me to the very sad reason that I’m here talking to you today. As we moved from September into October, the Ferrari Challenge kicked off at Homestead Miami Speedway down in beautiful Florida. When you consider the disaster caused by Hurricane Irma just weeks ago, it’s amazing that we are even lucky enough to see some of the finest exotics in the world take to the track. In this case, I’m talking about the Ferrari 488 Challenge,a car that is success none other than the Ferrari 458 Challenge, F430 Challenge, 360 Challenge, F355 Challenge, and the very first Ferrari 348 Challenge that graced the track from 1993 to 1995. Needless to say, the 488 Challenge has some serious proteins in his DNA. But that didn’t stop a rather unfortunate and unhappy accident during the Ferrari Challenge. Fortunately, the drivers of the two cars involved were okay (so we’re told, anyway) but as you’ll see from this amazing in-car footage that in itself is a miracle. Click on the “Read More” button to see the short video for yourself and learn more about not only the 488 Challenge but Homestead Miami Speedway as well.
This is Not the Way to Trade your Mercedes SLK for a Tesla Model S
Imagine for a minute that you’re a Tesla salesman and beautiful San Francisco, California and just got back from your overpriced lunch. You take a deep breath and smell the air that is the glory of your liberated EV showroom. You’ve had a good week so far, sold a couple of cars, then all of the sudden: BAM, Crash, Smack. You look up, and there’s a Mercedes SLK staring you in the face with a (presumably) scared senior citizen behind the wheel rocking out to AC/DC and sporting his bald-man mullet. What the hell just happened here? Well, as much as I would like to report that some Mercedes driver has just had enough with all of this damn EV, ICE-killing drama that’s plaguing the automotive market place, I really have to report that this old man simply made a huge mistake while attempting to overtake some vehicles but using a bus lane.
As the story goes, our old friend was hoping to pass some traffic in a bus lane, but as it turns out that bus lane was about to end. He said that he thought it was a third lane, but come on – we all know better. He then panicked and tried to hit the brake, but put the accelerator to the floor instead. As a result, he jumped a curb, smucked a tree, shot across a crosswalk, took out a mail box, sign, and traffic control box, then wedge his SLK into a Tesla showroom. Fortunately, and we’re not sure how, nobody was seriously injured, but the Tesla showroom is now tasked with replacing a pair of ridiculously large 15-foot tall glass windows. A BMW 5 Series did take some minor damage as a result of the accident too, but it will likely drive another day. As for that SLK, well, It’s not likely it’ll see the light of day again.
On a different note, I have to say this vaguely reminds me of a certain South Park episode that addressed the concern with old folks behind the wheel. Now, not all seniors are bad drivers – I’m not going to be the guy that claims that – but this guy should certainly get an award for reminding us to watch out for Grandpa when he’s trying to find the nearest buffet, don’t you think? Check out the video that shows off the aftermath of this crazy accident below.
A Sad Sight: Cars Victimized by Mother Nature as Hurricane Harvey Ripped Through Texas
News surrounding Hurricane Harvey has been constantly flowing since the Category Three storm poured trillions of gallons of rainwater onto the coast of Texas over several days. Metro Huston and its surrounding areas are among the hardest hit. Among the more than 66 people dead and an estimated 44,000 homes flooded, nearly a million vehicles were lost to flood waters.
Images tell the clearest story, with photos of submerged cars lining once-busy Interstates and the aftermath of muddy water soaking into every nook and void within a car’s interior. Of the photos we’ve seen, the saddest are of antique and performance cars, including a vintage Porsche 911, several Corvettes and Vipers, and even a few late-model Ferraris. Of course, a flooded vehicle is legally required to be listed as such on its title, warning would-be buyers about its time under water. While we’re happy to see vintage and high-dollar vehicles get restored and retitled appropriately, some flood cars will be shadily repaired and sold on the pre-owned market with no indication to the buyer. This is most commonly done with average vehicles like pickups, SUVs, and family cars. The most recent large-scale case of this happening was Hurricane Sandy that hit New York and New Jersey in 2012. Hurricane Harvey will undoubtedly see the same illegal activity in its wake.
Unfortunately, we expect to see similar photos from Florida in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma.
Oops: Newly Wed Couple Crash a Rented McLaren 650S
A wedding is supposed to be one of the happiest days in a person’s life. It’s especially important for the bride and groom, though I can argue that guests can have their own version of fun at these events. Unfortunately, things can still go awry, as one person will attest after crashing a rented McLaren 650S into a tree in what could very well be one of the most ill-timed and expensive attempts at showing off.
Specific details on what happened are still unclear, but the end result is as crystal as they come. The rented McLaren 650S incurred significant damage because the driver thought it was a good idea to mess around with the supercar’s launch control figure. I’m not sure if the driver didn’t know the purpose of launch control or he just made a mistake in engaging it; it doesn’t matter now either way. The point is that because of his tomfoolery, the 650S’ front end is barely recognizable after smooching with the tree. The hood looks like a crumpled piece of paper and both air bags actually deployed. All of that means that the 650S probably launched close to where the tree was and the suddenness of the car’s acceleration startled the driver, leaving him with precious little time to correct his error to at least avoid hitting the tree.
I don’t know who’s going to have to foot the bill for the supercar’s repairs, but I can tell you that given its state, I wouldn’t be surprised if the cost of repairs goes up to six figures. Lesson learned, folks. There’s no harm in renting a McLaren 650S for a wedding and then proudly show it off to all the other guests. Just make sure you know what you’re getting yourself into. And don’t forget to purchase the best insurance policy at the rental counter.
Judge Rules Texting and Driving Accidents Aren’t Apple’s Fault
These days lawsuits are passed around like dirty diapers, with every American looking to hold someone responsible for anything they can think of. But it also comes down to people not wanting to take responsibility for their own stupidity, either. Just think of all the frivolous lawsuits surrounding Tesla, and its AutoPilot software – most of these were complete crap, and people didn’t want to admit they drove their car into their own house. Well, the same thing boils down to texting and driving, with people wanting to blame phone manufacturers for not doing something to block distracted driving. In this case, I’m talking about Apple, and the lawsuit brought against the company by David Riggs, whose son was unfortunately killed way too soon by someone who was texting and driving. That lawsuit has been withstanding for a while now, but it’s finally coming to a close.
Whether or not Apple has really put profits above safety remains to be seen but, much like the case from 2016 that said it was unreasonable that Apple be held “responsible for ultimate harm,” the Judge ruled in Apple’s favor for this case as well and dismissed this lawsuit, ultimately saying that blaming of the fatal accident on Apple was “attenuated.” The case was thrown out and cannot be filed under the same claim again. The driver that was responsible for the accident was charged with a misdemeanor for using his iPhone while driving, but Riggs ultimately wanted to put the blame on Apple. For now, it looks like Riggs will have to look somewhere else to place blame, and should perhaps consider going after the person responsible for the accident… just a thought.
One Florida Couple and Their Kia Sorrento have had an Explosive Summer
It’s summer time, which means the weather is hot, the beer is cold, and the grille is a burnin’. Imagine an amazing weekend with the wife at the beach or park, cooking up your favorite grill food, and enjoying the nice August weather. Sounds amazing doesn’t it – maybe hide away the phone and laptop of a day, just enjoy each other’s company and the scenery around you. Eventually, all good things come to an end, though, so at some point, you have to pack up your car and head back to reality. There isn’t much worse than dreading going to work on Monday after having such a wonderful Sunday, but things can always be worse as one Florida couple found out when their trip home from such a day turned explosive.
Apparently, the couple packed all their belongings, including their grill, into their Kia Sorrento and embarked on their trip home. Well, as any smoker will tell you, it almost comes naturally to light up once you get in the car – assuming you smoke in your car, anyway. Well, this particular day, hubby had a brain fart and forgot to turn off the propane to the grill. As the couple started to pull away from wherever they were at, whoever was sitting in the passenger seat decided to say hello to Mr. Marlboro. Well, since someone neglected to turn off the propane, that quick hello to Mr. Marlboro got this couple close enough to God to shine his shoes. The spark from the lighter that was intended to light up that cowboy killer also ignited all of the gas that had expelled into the vehicle since the grill was loaded up. How the couple didn’t smell the propane is beyond any logic we can come up with.
Keep reading to hear a little more about the situation.