What You Really Need To Know About the 1997-2004 Porsche 996 911
The Porsche 911 has had a long and illustrious history that dates all the way back to 1963. Basically becoming the posterchild for performance and what a true sports car should be, it has quite the cult following. One could even argue that it’s one of the most loved sports cars in the world. But, despite all of this love, there’s one generation that stands out as inferior, and that my friends is the 996 generation that was built between 1997 and 2004. Well, technically it stayed in production to some extent until 2006, but we’ll talk more about that later. So, was the 996 911 really such a bad car, and should you risk buying one today? It’s not as bad as you might think, although, there are some things you need to know about it.
10 Highly Anticipated Cars That Were Complete Let-Downs
There’s a saying in the auto industry that “every new idea is a good idea.” There’s a kernel of truth in that because the best and most popular cars are all born from ideas. But there’s a flip side to that saying, too. Just because every new idea is a good idea, it doesn’t mean that these good ideas end up as good products. Time and again, we’ve seen automakers take a promising concept and lose the plot completely when the production version comes out. Every company has experienced something along these lines, but we’ve singled out ten vehicles that serve as the best examples of highly anticipated cars that turned out to be let-downs. Granted, some of these vehicles had their moments in the sun, but those moments were fleeting. In the end, we all remember them for what they could’ve been. They’re not necessarily lemons, but they still leave a sour taste in our mouths.
Maserati Bora - A Great Car With Horrible Timing
Maserati is one of the oldest and most coveted Italian car brands ever. Although they’ve had their ups and downs, the motorsport success of Maserati cars has helped spawn some great road cars, too. Among them was the Bora, which actually has its 50th anniversary this year. The Maserati Bora may not be as celebrated as other models of the brand, but it’s one of the most significant Maserati cars to have been produced. For its 50th birthday, we are giving you some interesting facts about the Bora.
The List of Predecessors to the Lotus Evija That You Didn’t Know Existed
Lotus just took a big step into the future by launching the Evija, its first-ever hypercar and first fully electric vehicle. Also likely to become the world most powerful production car, the Evija is a rather unusual car for an automaker known for affordable and lightweight sports cars. But as surprising as the Evija might seem, the truth is Lotus has been working with electrified drivetrains since the late 2000s. That’s a full decade of EVs and hybrids that haven’t received the attention they deserved. Granted, they’re all concept cars that never made it into production, but their existence signalled Lotus’ intentions. Also, several automakers based a handful of electrified vehicles on Lotus platforms. Let’s have a closer look at them.
A Deep Look Into Aston Martin’s Mid-Engined History
Aston Martin is known as a maker of exquisite and refined grand tourers, long-legged cars that offer enough panache to satisfy Ian Fleming’s James Bond on many an occasion. You could say Aston Martin knows every trick there is to know when it comes to building a front-engined GT car and that’s why they’re now looking to build more and more cars with the engine behind the seats. But the Valkyrie, the new Vanquish, and the AM-RB 003 aren’t the first of their kind in Aston Martin’s history.
When you think of any DB model from Aston Martin, you imagine an elegant two-door tourer ready for long journeys with a sumptuous and well-appointed interior and a feisty engine in front of the windshield. The company’s one and only Le Mans winner, the DBR1, was also front-engined as was the futuristic brick-like Lagonda luxury sedan from the ’70s. But, then, in the ’80s, when Aston Martin returned to sports car racing, it did so with a mid-engined car. This effectively heralded a new breed of Aston Martins, one that has stayed away from the public highways up until now but one that’s interesting to look into nonetheless.
The Rise and Fall of Saab - A Story Of Interesting Intent, Success, And Failure
Made by trolls in Trollhattan, this is the story of one of the greatest car companies in the world - from birth to success and then to its death and troubled resurrection. Today, we’re going to talk about how SAAB went from a safety and Turbo icon to just another General Motors casualty, like Pontiac, Saturn, and Oldsmobile.
Vehicle Development - There’s More To It Than You Realize
Perhaps the most important point is for the customer to be sure what it is they´re expecting from a sportscar. Speed? Comfort? Agile track handling? It is easy to see that it is not easy to reconcile all these aspects, and this is the reason why in many instances firms will offer several variants of the “same” sportscar. Let´s take the Porsche 911 range as an example; it includes models for everyday use such as the Carrera S all the way to the more extreme, flamboyant – and less comfortable – GT3 RS or GT2 RS.
It is up to the development, dynamics and product management teams to give the vehicle its appropriate driving qualities. Performance targets such as top speed, acceleration, maximum weight or cornering speed need to be pre-defined. In the automotive industry, such parameters are referred to as “vehicle attributes”. Driving an S-Class is a very different experience to driving an AMG GT-R; this is all down to their different attributes.
The Story of Fordlandia - One of Henry Ford’s Bounciest Failures
Buried deep into the Brazilian jungle sit the remains of what was once Henry Ford’s utopian city. A place where one of the richest and most influential men on the planet wanted not to make money, but to - quote - help develop that wonderful and fertile land.
And I can tell you right now that Henry Ford definitely didn’t make any money out of his dream city. In fact, it turned out to be one of his biggest failures - but we’ll get to that later. So keep reading to find out the story of Fordlandia, an American attempt at making an American rubber factory and an American-style community in the heart of the Brazilian Amazon.
The Mercedes-Benz Logo - A Complete History
Best Naturally Aspirated Engines in Human History
When BMW rolled the 2002 Turbo towards the tail end of 1973, in the middle of the fuel crisis, everybody viewed it as insanity. Still, as years rolled by, the classic adage that said ’there’s no replacement for displacement’ seemed to hold true for at least some manufacturers. However, ever stringent pollution regulations and the need for increased efficiency pushed carmakers to embrace forced induction more broadly and strangled naturally aspirated engines one by one. Nowadays, big players such as BMW don’t even offer a naturally aspirated engine across their entire lineups and even Ferrari is all but ditching the engines that made the Prancing Horse legendary through their expertly honed soundtrack.
It’s not necessarily that naturally aspirated engines are going to go extinct in a matter of a handful of years but it’s clear that the performance levels achieved by turbocharged or supercharged units simply can’t be matched by a naturally aspirated engine. On top of that, an engine that uses forced induction is more economical due to its smaller capacity and friendlier with the environment which - in the eyes of everyone but some purists - is a win-win situation. While we love turbochargers and superchargers, we thought we’d take a look at some of the history’s best naturally aspirated engines at a time when fewer and fewer manufacturers still offer them - at least in performance cars. We assure you they are proper bangers!
Aerodynamics - It’s More Than a Fancy Word
Aerodynamics is one of the most exploited areas within the high-performance vehicle industry. Yet it is not easy to judge just how much of it you need, particularly in a road going car. Most car fans will be aware of its importance. However, for a non-engineer, the term “aerodynamic load” can be diffuse and hard to quantify. This is what you need to know about it.
8 Forgotten Concepts That Should Have Made it to Production
Concept cars are often the result of an automaker’s desire to showcase possibilities. Very rarely, though, do these possibilities translate to reality. Some concepts get used as springboards for future production models. Some get used as blueprints for future technologies. But more often than not, a lot of concept cars get sent back to the shadows, never to be heard from again. It’s a shame because the concept cars on this list didn’t deserve that fates they received. These concepts should’ve been turned into production models. Unfortunately, for one reason or another, none of them did, and all we’re left with our thoughts of what could’ve been.
Ferrari’s One-Off Creations is A List of the Most Desirable Prancing Horses of All Time
Back in 2008, Ferrari launched its One-Off personalization program to a lot of fanfare at that year’s Geneva Motor Show. The goal was to give Maranello’s most important clients the opportunity to create their own Ferraris. It’s been over a decade since that announcement, and it’s safe to say that Ferrari’s program has become a resounding success. Every year, a number of one-off Ferraris enter our lives, commissioned by an individual who Ferrari deems as one of its VIPs. Models like the 2012 Ferrari SP Arya, 2014 Ferrari SP FFX, and 2018 Ferrari SP38 Deborah have been built. Each of these one-offs is unique from every other Ferrari in existence, largely because they came to life as a result of someone’s vision for his or her perfect Ferrari. The 2019 Ferrari P80/C is the latest one-off Ferrari to arrive, but given the success Ferrari has had with the program and the growing demand among customers to get their own “1of1s” — there’s a five-year waitlist, in case you qualify — the P80/C won’t be the last one-off Ferrari in the world. On the contrary, this first ten years of the whole program could be just the beginning of what will most likely turn into one of Ferrari’s most successful customer-centric programs in its long and illustrious history. In case you haven’t paid attention over the last ten years, check out some of the most memorable one-off models that Ferrari has created.
Everything You Need to Know About The McLaren Senna
Named after beloved Brazilian F1 driver Ayrton Senna, the McLaren Senna is an Ultimate Series model sharing apex predator status with the likes of Elva, P1, and Speedtail in the British supercar maker’s lineup.
At the same time, the Senna is part of a new breed of supercars that feature F1-derived technology, so it’s basically a competitor for the likes of Mercedes-AMG One and Aston Martin Valkyrie. As a result, it’s brimming with features that make it both unique and a beast on the road or on the track. Stick around for an in-depth run-through of the Senna’s quirks and specs.
What Is The Carolina Squat?
Since the automobile has become more mainstream, the car scene has witnessed many trends, some considered to be unnatural. Since the early 2000s, we’ve seen riced out, the rise of stance, and slammed cars, as well as other diversions from a car’s factory settings. The Carolina squat is another “car condition” we can add to the list. The Carolina squat affects mostly trucks, and like the other alterations, mentioned above, it is intentionally done by the owner of the vehicle. So what is the Carolina squat, and where did it come from?
CVT vs. Automatic Transmission
In general, there are three types of transmissions – manual, automatic, and CVT. Each of them have their own pros and cons. The automatic and CVT gearboxes are similar in that they do not require driver input in order to change gears. However, where they differ is in the way they function internally. So what’s the difference? Let’s find out!
5 Incredible Ferrari Special Edition Cars
Just after Ferrari presented their awe-inspiring Monza SP-1 and the Monza SP-2 cars, I had an idea I simply had to explore. For mine and, consequently, your good, I researched a little bit (not a little bit, but quite a bit actually) about the most amazing special edition cars Ferrari ever built. Apart from the Monza SP-1 and the Monza SP-2 I find striking, I am presenting you five other Ferrari special edition cars which proved to be as sensational as the best that ever came out of the Maranello factory. You may call me shortsighted, or whatever, but I did not include any of the V-8 powered Special Edition Ferrari cars. You know what, if you already have the money to spend on a freaking special edition Ferrari that costs millions of dollars, then go all out and buy a proper one - with the V-12. Call me mad, an idiot or just a dumb car guy, but the V-8 powered Ferrari Special Edition can’t be as good as the V-12 powered Ferrari Special Edition car. I found five mesmerizing ones.
Everything We Know About The Nissan 400Z?
We will get a new Nissan Z-car. The new Nissan Z car is due for a reveal in the coming years, and some suggest we may even see it at the next Tokyo Motor Show or at NAIAS in 2019. Mind you, this information is yet to be confirmed, but we already know that Nissan is working on a replacement for the 370Z. I am telling you again - the new Nissan Z car will come. For me, this is a huge deal as I really liked the 370Z in its purest, least expensive form. Ignore my emotions from now on as I try to elaborate on what the new Nissan Z car should be. Believe me, so many rumors circulate on the Internet that it is almost impossible to separate right from wrong and truth from deception. In that regard, I am going to give you a rundown of the most logical solutions Nissan may employ for the creation of the new Z car.
10 Things the Ferrari Purosangue Needs to Take on the Competition
Ferrari will build an SUV. I am not joking, the company made an announcement. It will be called the Ferrari Purosangue. That’s the official name of the Ferrari SUV. Ok, Ferrari CEO Louis Camilleri implicitly said that he does not want to hear “that word” in the same sentence with the word Ferrari. “That word” being SUV. Ok, Camilleri, I will not do it. Ever. The new Ferrari... truck… will be the most amazing piece of technology ever attempted with the “that word” layout. Luckily, we do know a thing or two about the new Purosangue.
Digression: Is the word crossover any better? Maybe, but I feel it sounds too soft for the status of a Ferrari. The Honda CR-V is a crossover for crying out loud.
The new Purosangue may take a layout similar to what we have been accustomed to with the onslaught of performance SUVs, yet the Italians promised to make it a proper thoroughbred. Incidentally (not really), Purosangue translated from Italian actually means thoroughbred. Is it just me, or the name Ferrari Thoroughbred (in English) wouldn’t sound bad at all? We have a Superfast and we like it, don’t we? Enough with the strange ideas. Purosangue it is.
Christopher Smith of Motor1 explained how to pronounce it:
“PUR-o-SAN-gue. There are four syllables, with emphasis on PUR and SAN. Phonetically speaking, start with PUR, as in a cat purring. From there just say a soft O as in oh, then SAN with a long A sound like saahn, and finish with GUE, which sounds like way but starting with a g – gway. PURR - oh - SAAHN - gway. See? It’s totally easy.”