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Archive for the ‘video’ Category

PostHeaderIcon Car Throttle Gets Technical About Getting Sideways: Video

The term “drifting” gets thrown around a lot these days. Hell, some manufacturers will even add it as a specific driving mode. But what is drifting really, and how is it different from any other form of ass-out oversteer? Car Throttle decided to drill down and figure it out in this nine-minute, 51-second video. Commence the tire smoke.

At the heart of the video is the difference between powersliding and drifting, which is explained by Car Throttle’s resident “Driving Badass” Alex Gassman as such – “drifting is everything you do on the way into a corner and powersliding is what happens after the apex.”

Sounds simple enough. Playing the part of tire killer for this demonstration is BMW’s M2 coupe, which manages to kick out the rear with ease thanks to the 365 horses provided by a front-mounted turbocharged six-cylinder. It also looks pretty good doing the whole sideways in slo-mo thing.

Gassman not only demonstrates both types of oversteer, but also provides some helpful hints if you wanna try it out for yourself at your local closed course. Of course, if you do decide to explore either drifting or powersliding, make sure you do it legally in a safe, controlled, environment.

PostHeaderIcon Ford Mustang Recreates "C'était un Rendez-Vous"

If you’re a car fanatic, you’ve probably seen C’était un Rendez-Vous, a film made back in 1976 by Claude Lelouch that showcased a car hauling ass through Paris early in the morning. It was an interesting short, to say the least, and showed off various landmarks and areas of Paris. For the 40th anniversary of the movie short, Ford has decided to do a reboot of the original, this time with 360-degree views and a woman behind the wheel of the 2018 Ford Mustang.

Of course, things have changed since 1976, which means there are a few things missing from what was shown in the original video. But the anniversary video, which is being called Re-Rendez-Vous,” does follow a similar route and shows off landmarks like the Arc de Triomphe, Montmartre, and Sacre Coeur Basilica, among others. On top of that, the driver in this video is a female who ultimately meets up with her boyfriend after a delightful cruise.

With that said, I won’t break down the video any more than that, so go ahead – click play and enjoy the reboot for yourself.

PostHeaderIcon Petrolicious Takes A Look At One Man's Passion For The Toyota 86, Both New And Old: Video

Some cars are just so incredibly good, they manage to transcend time itself. The Toyota AE86 is one such car. Made in the ‘80s using tin cans and old plastic bottles, the AE86 sought driving nirvana via an age-old formula – engine up front, power in the back, and very little weight in between. The recipe worked wonders, giving birth to one of the most iconic enthusiasts’ cars to ever hail from the Land of the Rising Sun. And that’s saying quite a lot. It was so good, in fact, Toyota decided to give it an encore several decades later. Southern California resident Ron Ng owns an example of both the new and old 86, and Petrolicious decided to highlight them both in this eight-and-a-half-minute video.

If you wanna be specific about it, Ng owns a 2017 Toyota 86 and a 1986 Toyota Corolla GTS. Both are finished in a classic white and black two-tone panda paint scheme, offer cog swaps through a three-pedal manual transmission, and equip high-revving four-cylinder engines under the hood.

But the similarities don’t end there. “Driving the new Toyota 86, it definitely has the characteristics of driving the older Corolla,” Ng says. And just like the old Corolla, the new 86 isn’t about burnouts and quarter-mile times. “It’s a momentum car. You always have to push it. You’ve gotta learn your brakes points properly to keep your RPMs up,” he explains, later adding, “The new 86 is a tool that teaches you how to achieve a high driving IQ.”

Which would you rather have? Let us know in the comments. And don’t forget to check out our review of the new 86 here.

PostHeaderIcon New Teaser Confirms that the Dodge Challenger Demon Will Have Tremendous Grip

Another week has passed and Dodge has launched a new teaser for the upcoming Challenger SRT Demon. The sixth out of 14 to be released before the muscle car makes it’s debut at the 2017 New York Auto Show, the new teaser is called “Multiplication” and showcases the car’s tires and torque converter. The actual clip doesn’t provide much information beyond the fact that the Demon can buckle its tires just like a dragster, but luckily Dodge also released a statement with precious bits of information.

For starters, it says that the 315/40R 18 Nitto NT05R street-legal drag radials, which are 12.6 inches wide, were designed and developed specifically for the Challenger SRT Demon using a new compound and unique tire construction. This enables the muscle car to handle higher launch torque loads, which prompted Dodge to give the Demon more torque multiplication. Specifically, the coupe is fitted with a higher stall speed torque converter and 3.09 rear axle gears, which returns significant improvements in various departments compared to the Challenger SRT Hellcat.

For instance, the special tires give the Demon a 15-percent larger tire contact patch and more than twice as much grip. Also, both converter torque multiplication and rear axle torque multiplication increase by about 18 percent. In all, these upgrades enable the Demon to generate more than 35 percent higher launch force than a Challenger Hellcat.

No wonder those tires bend like they’re made of bubble gum…

The next teaser will be launched on February 23, while big unveiling is set to take place in April. Meanwhile, check out the short teaser above and stay tuned for updates.

PostHeaderIcon Porsche's Top 5 Rarest Factory Models As Told By The Man Who Takes Care Of Them

Creating a “Top Five” or “Top 10” list is always an exercise in caution because these rankings are largely of the subjective variety. One person can have a his top five on a specific topic only to see another person with a different top five of his own. In such instances, we usually rely on persons of authority to make these definitive calls. When it comes to making a legitimate top five list on the rarest Porsche factory models no person is better suited for the task than Dieter Landenberger, the manager of Porsche’s own Historical Archives.

The latest episode of Porsche’s always fun and informative “Top Five” series brings us to the Porsche Museum where Landenberger is its chief archivist. As somebody who knows pretty much knows as much about Porsche as anybody alive today, Landenberger is the perfect person to make a list of the rarest Porsche factory models in the world. The list itself is indicative of Porsche’s long and proud history and all the cars that Landenberger named each carried a storied history behind its exclusivity.

It’s fitting too that Landenberger’s choices come from a number of different Porsche generations spanning over 50 years of Stuttgart’s finest creations. Most of us probably know what the number one spot on this list is, but watching the episode and seeing Landenberg pull the sheets off of each of the cars that comprised the top five also made us realize just how awe-inspiring this museum is and just as important, how incredible Porsche’s history really is.

So without further adieu, check out the top 5 rarest Porsche factory models in the eyes and words of no less than Dieter Landenberger himself.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

PostHeaderIcon Top Gear's New Trailer For Season 24 Is Off To A Promising Start

There are times when you just have to wipe the slate clean and start over from scratch. Such scenarios typically happen when someone goes through something disastrous and they’re left with nothing more than hope for a sunnier future. You could say that it happened to Top Gear last year as the popular motoring show suffered through one of its worst seasons in history. Everything that could have gone wrong with that show did, but now, on the heels of the 24th season, Top Gear is returning with a fresh outlook in life, and judging from the newest trailer of the show, that positivity could soon pay off.

Gone are Chris Evans, Sabine Schmitz, and Eddie Jordan, and we’re left with what could very well be said as the three presenters that really made a good account of themselves in the last season: Matt LeBlanc, Chris Harris, and Rory Reid. It is funny to think though that while LeBlanc and Harris were regarded as solid hires a year ago, Reid was the biggest question of the group. Good for him that he was able to prove his worth. Also, to be fair, Schmitz also did well for herself last year.

So, about the trailer. The new one dives back deep into the dry comedic wit that made the show famous in the first place. In it we see Harris, LeBlanc, and Reid sitting inside the BBC’s insurance department as they’re grilled about the insurance costs they needed for the show. Throughout the whole scene, we’re also treated with snippets of the 24th season of the show, including Harris taking the wheel of the Ferrari FXX K, LeBlanc doing what could very well be an ill-fated impersonation of James Bond, and Reid crashing into what might be one of the show’s production trucks. All the while, the three hosts continue to uncomfortably sit in the insurance department as they take questions from the head of the insurance department. It’s good for a few laughs, which is probably all that the BBC is looking for at this point.

Speaking of the BBC, the network has yet to announce the schedule for the 24th season of the show. But we all know that it’s coming; it’s just a matter of when, not if. Hopefully, the 24th season fares a lot better than the last one when it does arrive.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

PostHeaderIcon Hear the Challenger SRT Demon Roar in Dodge's Latest Teaser Video

Dodge has just released the fifth video teaser of the Challenger SRT Demon, revealing more details about the upcoming muscle car. Along with the clip, Dodge also unleashed four new high-resolution photos. Both the video (called “Forced Induction”) and the pictures highlight the coupe’s supercharger and “Air Grabber” system.

There aren’t any significant hints about engine data or the size of the new supercharged, but the soundtrack includes the roar of the 6.2-liter V-8 when idling and under full throttle. And needless to say, it sounds amazing.

Other than that, the video shows air entering through the two intakes flanking the headlights and the massive scoop atop the hood, which includes the “Air Grabber,” described as the largest functional cold air intake ever installed on a production car. The system drops the air temperature by more than 30 degrees compared the Hellcat.

The Challenger SRT Demon is set to break cover at the 2017 New York Auto Show in April. Until then, Dodge is set to release nine more videos. The next one will hit the Interwebz next Thursday (February 20). Stick around for updates.

PostHeaderIcon We'll Remember These Five Super Bowl Commercials For A While

So, Super Bowl LI was a pretty remarkable game, wasn’t it? It had generous helpings of drama, including the greatest comeback in the history of the game. That tells you the magnitude of what Tom Brady and the New England Patriots accomplished when it rallied from 25 points down to beat Matt Ryan and the Atlanta Falcons, 34 to 28.

Apart from the history-making game though, Super Bowl LI will be remembered for its commercials. That’s been a recipe of the Big Game for years now, and just as it was back then, this year’s game featured plenty of commercials, including a significant number of ads from the auto industry. There were definitely a lot of them, and while some of those commercials bordered on the bad to the outright ridiculous, there are those that stood out, including the five commercials you’re going to read about below.

These ads are, for lack of a better term, the most memorable car commercials of Super Bowl LI. As you can expect the treatment of these ads differ from one another. There’s one that used the power of a celebrity to get its message across. There’s also another that touched on its own future. Then there are the ads that carried with them deeper societal meanings that extended well into the treatment of their commercials.

Remember, this isn’t a list of the best commercials among automakers during Super Bowl LI. It’s a list of commercials that stood out in different ways, whether it’s through laughs or empowerment. Personally, I liked all of them, and for what it’s worth, all five do place in my rankings of best car commercials during Super Bowl LI, which itself will be otherwise remembered as the Super Bowl that solidified Tom Brady’s place as the greatest of all time.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

PostHeaderIcon Jay Leno Gets Under The Hood Of A 1,000-Horsepower '65 Mustang: Video

You gotta love old Mustangs. The look, the smell, the tire-squealing torque – it’s all classic muscle car stimuli that’s sure to evoke something if you’re even the least bit interested in cars. As such, it’s a platform that’s seen a ton of reimagining over the years, from light modification to complete overhauls. This particular restomod falls towards the more extreme side of that spectrum, boasting an incredible 1,000 horsepower at the rear wheels. Responsible for the build is Timeless Kustoms, a speed shop based out of southern California, which took its outrageous pony car down the road a little ways to Jay Leno’s Garage in order to give the former Tonight Show host and lifelong car guy a looksee.

“Today’s featured vehicle,” Jay begins, “1965 Ford Mustang Fastback, so far from stock that it’s hilarious. This is exactly the kind of car that just gets the comments section going.”

What started as an unblemished six-cylinder coupe was transformed into what it is now through 10,000 hours of exhaustive tweaks, tuning, and modifications. Timeless Kustoms did a complete teardown before hitting it full force with the upgrades, and clearly, pulled no punches in executing the build.

But let’s get to the party piece under the hood. Providing motivation is a 5.1-liter Coyote V-8, which gets a supercharger and two turbos to stuff an insane amount of air into the cylinders.

At over 23 minutes, the video is a bit on the long side, but there’s plenty of footage of the build and a healthy amount of tech specs to get you excited for your own wrenching adventures.

PostHeaderIcon Car Throttle Mixes Cargo Space And Fun With Two JDM Wagons: Video

You gotta love a vehicle that has the power and performance to haul ass, plus the cargo space to haul everything else. Here in the states, it’s a combo we usually associate with high-performance SUVs, but overseas, there are a few other options. Our friends over at Car Throttle decided to explore a couple alternatives from Japan in this nine-minute video review, including the Subaru Forester STI and Mitsubishi Evo Wagon, and after watching the vid, we were left wondering what it would take to get one of these bad boys into our garage.

Car Throttle starts with the Forester, a tall-bodied five-door packing a turbocharged 2.5-liter boxer four-cylinder engine and symmetrical AWD. The particular example on display here is tuned, arriving with around 350 horsepower at the wheels. “It is pretty brutish, it’s very fast, incredibly practical, and on roads like this, it is the ultimate weapon,” exclaims Car Throttle host Alex Kersten.

Cheap-o interior plastics and poor mpg figures aside, the Forester STI is quite the chariot. But per tradition, Mitsubishi has an answer to the Subaru challenge (or at least it did, once).

The second half of the video is devoted to the Evo wagon, the long-roofline version of Mitsu’s legendary rally sedan. Compared to the STI, Kersten says the Evo has lighter steering, but with a quicker ratio. “It’s more direct, and the car feels so much sharper, it feels lower to the ground, because it is lower to the ground, and it’s just way more of a tarmac car than the Forester is.” Making the Evo go is a turbo 2.0-liter four-cylinder and high-performance AWD system with multiple drive modes.

The want is strong with us for both of these machines. Which would you rather have?

PostHeaderIcon Honda's Star-Studded Super Bowl Commercial Reminds Us To Follow our Dreams

Honda teased us yesterday with a 15-second sneak peek of its Super Bowl commercial and it didn’t take the Japanese automaker long to pull the covers off of the actual 60-second commercial that will air this coming Sunday. The full ad, titled “Yearbooks,” has a pretty straight-forward message that ties into the brand’s long-standing “Power of Dreams” motto.

The ad lacks in any sort of meaningful comedy, but it more than makes up for it by dropping a staggering number of Hollywood A-listers who not only provided their old yearbook photos, but also did voice-over work to promote Honda’s message. We all know that Steve Carrell would be there, but he was also joined by the likes of Tina Fey, Robert Redford, Earvin “Magic” Johnson, Stan Lee, Jimmy Kimmel, Amy Adams, and Missy Elliott.

One by one, the celebrities shared inspirational messages that revolved around the theme of not giving up and pursuing your dreams to the best of your abilities, or as Stan Lee so eloquently said: “if you want to make a universe, make a universe.” All of the messages of the celebrities eventually leads to the CR-V, a product that Honda says was created by chasing its own dreams.

Somewhat refreshingly, there is very little underlying tone in this commercial. There may have been an excessive number of celebrities – wonder how much that cost Honda – in the 60-second advertisement, but the whole point of the commercial is as direct and as straightforward as the sound bites we got from these A-listers.

So go chase those dreams, but if you are going to go hunting for them, do so while also living your life to the best of your abilities.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

PostHeaderIcon Buick Goes Star-Studded Route For Its Super Bowl LI Commercial

Say what you will about Buick’s place in the US luxury car market scene, but when it comes to spending for Super Bowl commercials, the General Motors-owned automaker has proven that it could spend with the best of them. The latest example of Buick’s free-wheeling Big Game spending comes in the form of its new commercial for Super Bowl LI.

The ad stars the Buick Cascada and Encore SUV, but it also taps Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton in a co-starring role with super model Miranda Kerr appearing in a cameo role. The combination of star power may sound strange on the surface, but Newton and Kerr perfectly encapsulate the “celebrity-focused” advertising strategy Buck has employed in recent years. Remember Peyton Manning and Shaquille O’Neal’s Buick ads in the past?

The story behind this particular ad revolves around some parents who spot the two Buicks while watching their kids’ pee-wee football game. One dad then playfully says that if that car (the Cascada) was, in fact, a Buick, he’d be Cam Newton. Alas, in true Disney fashion, Newton magically appears under center, much to the shock of the children he’s now playing against.

Kerr’s appearance in the advertisement isn’t as prominent as Newton’s, but the “if that SUV (the Encore) is a Buick, then I’m Miranda Kerr” quip magically works again as the dad weirdly turns into one of the most beautiful super models in the world. Yes, it happened, so be warned.

All told, the family-friendly ad hits on a lot of levels. Kids and adults can both appreciate it, especially the latter of whom count themselves as either sports fans or, well, Miranda Kerr fans.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

PostHeaderIcon Toyota Mirai Gets Super Bowl Commercial To Help Boost Sales

Unlike hybrids and all-electric cars, hydrogen fuel cell vehicles have struggled to gain any meaningful traction in the auto industry. Part of that may be attributed to a lack of awareness of its unique capabilities and another part of that can be pointed in the direction of not having enough of them in the market to begin with. After all, California is the only state in the U.S. where an FCV like the Toyota Mirai is currently being sold. Whatever the case may be, FCVs have yet to turn into popular alternative vehicles for a lot of people and no more is that evident than the lackluster sales of the Mirai.

That’s also a big reason why Toyota is spending big money in advertising the vehicle as it now has its own commercial spot for the Super Bowl. Titled “Daisy,” the commercial goes straight to the point in highlighting the Mirai’s ability to emit water instead of gas. The ad starts with a full-bloomed daisy sitting somewhat meekly in the middle of a concrete road. A car then stops just beside the flower before coughing out a plume of smoke out of its exhaust. Convenient, right? As the car moves along, the poor daisy (with a spotlight on it no less) keels over the same way a dehydrated person would if he’s spent days on end without water.

And just as everything appeared to go south on the flower, the Mirai heroically comes along, stops at the exact same spot as the previous vehicle, and discharges whatever water it has emitted straight into the daisy. Just like that, the daisy springs back to life and a voice-over comes in to proudly say that the hydrogen-fuelled Mirai’s only emission is water.

As far as a commercial goes, this one leaves the comedy behind and cuts straight to the point to showcase why the Mirai is such an important car in today’s world. Whether the ad succeeds in generating more interest for the car is a question that will only be answered over time. But for now, the commercial comes as a worthwhile gamble on Toyota’s part considering that it only sold 1,034 models of the car in 2016 and just 83 units in the first month of 2017.

PostHeaderIcon Dodge Drops Fourth Teaser For The Challenger SRT Demon

Dodge is really trying to boast its upcoming Challenger SRT Demon with a new video every week that comes complete with at least one cryptic message. The problem is that there are quite a few negative comments floating around now that we know a little more about the Demon. First off, the front passenger and rear seats will be deleted as will things like the trunk lining and most of the speakers. But, what’s really triggering negativity is how Dodge is going about some of its weight reduction processes. It’s replacing the solid sway bars with smaller, hollow units, and it’s using a smaller brake setup as opposed to going with carbon or ceramic units. Be that as it may, Dodge still thinks the Demon is going to be a big hit, and the fourth teaser video shows us a crate that will come with the Demon that is loaded with a number of Demon-branded tools and other paraphernalia that is said to help make the car flexible so that it can perform on the street or on the track.

According to Dodge, the crate comes with direct connection Demon performance parts, Demon-branded track tools, matching Demon spare wheels, and a Demon track pack system. There’s no word on exactly what tools are included, but the video showcases a torque wrench, battery-powered impact, and a floor jack. At the very end of the video, we see one end of a five-point harness sticking out of the box, so it’s safe to assume that’s part of the track pack system. It’s a pretty cool idea, and would certainly look nice sitting in my garage, but it also seems like Dodge is taking a play out of BMW’s playbook and trying to scrape together some extra cheddar from fanboys that are willing to pay extra for something a little different. After all, the Challenger itself is a decade old at this point and is long overdue for a redesign.

On a side note, I want to point out that the press release that accompanies the video also includes a shot of the personalized plate that will be riveted to each Demon crate. But, this plate is hiding another one of Dodge’s cryptic messages. The name shouldn’t come as a surprise to some, but for those of you who don’t know, Tom Coddington has a long history with Dodge and is credited for helping to make it the brand it is today. As for the numbers, the serial number of 0757 could point to the horsepower output of the Demon, which would put it at exactly 50 ponies higher than its Hellcat sibling. As for the Vin, on the other hand, it could be a release date (Nov 21, 2017) while some say that it points to the car having 1,121 pound-feet of torque. The latter seems a little outrageous, but these days anything is possible.

With that said, go ahead and click play on the video, then let us know what you think about all of this in the comments section below.

PostHeaderIcon Steve Carrell Looks Like The 20-Year Old Virgin In Honda's Teaser Ad For The Super Bowl

Yes, we better get used to these 15-second teasers of 60-second commercials in the run up leading to Super Bowl LI. As ridiculous as they sound, these teasers have become important aspects of a company’s marketing strategy during the Big Game, especially at a time when a lot of people who watch the Super Bowl actually watch it for the commercials and not the game itself. We already know that Kia has rolled out its own 15-second teaser featuring Melissa McCarthy. Now it’s Honda’s turn and it’s bringing its own Hollywood A-lister into the mix: Steve Carrell.

The hilarious comedian best known for movies like Despicable Me, Date Night, and Evan Almighty gets the yearbook treatment for this ad, right down to the thick mustache. Looking at his 20-year old likeness is funny enough by itself, but Carrell adds on the hilarity of his looks by giving a funny yet uplifting speech about “believing in yourself.”

The 15-second teaser isn’t actually for one of Carrell’s upcoming movies. It’s for the 2017 Honda CR-V, which has actually been on sale in the US since December 2016. Yep, it’s barely a month into its life in the showrooms so it’s fitting that Honda would use a stage as big as the Super Bowl to promote the wheels off of the new CR-V.

Having Carrell in the fold to provide comedy in the 60-second commercial should also go a long way in establishing a lot of interest in the ad. At the very least, Honda also has to account for the success of its Super Bowl commercial last year for the Ridgeline. That one featured a flock of sheep singing Queen’s Somebody to Love and was one of the most well-received commercials during the game.

The pressure’s definitely on for Honda and Steve Carrell to make an impression for the new CR-V. Judging by this teaser, I’d say that they’re well on their way to doing that.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

PostHeaderIcon Does Your Engine Need To Warm Up Before Driving? Get A Few Facts In This Video

It’s cold out right now. Up here in the mountains of Northern California, a recent rash of storms laid many feet of snow on the ground, and although it’s great if you’re into snowboarding, the frosty weather can be hard on a car. So the question is this – when you fire up your ride in the morning, should you let it idle and warm up before driving off? The Internet is full of opinions on the matter, but Engineering Explained took the time to make this three-minute video on the pros of not doing a warm-up period for fuel-injected engines.

When you first start your engine and the temperature is low, the air-fuel mix will go rich in order to provide enough combustible vapors to keep it running, as cold temperatures lead to poor fuel atomization. When this happens, the extra fuel will eat away at the oil on the pistons and cylinder walls, leading to more wear and tear on your engine.

Engineering Explained contends that the longer your engine is cold, the longer it goes without that protecting oil coating the cylinders. The fix is to simply drive your car, as it’ll more quickly put heat into it, and thus, reduce the damaging effects of the cold. Just wait around 30 seconds, then go, but drive it lightly, as it needs to reach optimal operating temperature before you can start hammering it.

Apparently, the “myth” of letting your car warm up on cold mornings stems from the days of carbureted engines, when the air-fuel ratio wasn’t automatically adjusted based on temperature.

It’s an interesting video, and definitely worth a watch if you live in colder climates. But we wanna know – do you let your car warm up before driving? Tell us in the comments.

PostHeaderIcon Worried About Self-Driving Cars Going Rogue? Looks Like Russia Has Had That Problem for Years

Naturally, the concept of fully autonomous has shed at least some light on the concern that cars could, in theory, go rogue and do things they aren’t intended to do. It doesn’t help that there have been many complaints of cars like the Tesla Model S, for example, choosing to accelerate on its own and smash into things. More recently, there was a Chevy Bolt owner that claimed his car magically turned on and smashed itself into a wall. Most of the reports of Tesla vehicles have been disproven and chalked off to owners trying to pass off blame for their own stupidity, but there is still a real fear there for some.

But, it doesn’t necessarily take self-driving technology for cars to go rogue. In the video you’re about to watch, which is mostly video from Russian dash cams, proves exactly that. Of course, most of them are the result of the owner not setting the parking brake, but there are a few that are quite questionable and look like the cars actually had a mind of their own. And, there’s a really weird clip at 6:08 that involves some creepy girl, a car, and a poor parking lot attendant that probably needed a fresh pair of boxers. You can try to make sense of that one when you see it, though.

With that said, go ahead and click play to enjoy 10 minutes of cars moving on their own.

PostHeaderIcon Ride Shotgun in the McLaren F1 During its Record-Breaking Run in 1998

The McLaren F1 is the legend of legends and is still considered by some to be the best car ever made. It was engineered by a team of hand-picked masterminds with a focus on reduced drag, increased downforce, and mind shattering performance all wrapped up into one sexy package that effectively raised the bar for all supercars that came after it. Not only was it pleasing to look at, but the design itself was pure genius as it accommodates enough downforce that there was no need for a big, bulky spoiler or wing on struts in the rear. With a curb weight of around 2,500 pounds and a 6.1-liter, BMW, V-12 that had 627 horsepower and 480 pound-feet of torque, the McLaren F1 took a dominating toll on the record books in the early 1990s. And that folks, is what brings me to the topic at hand: the F1’s crazy top speed record of 240.1 mph.

To this day, the F1 is still the fastest naturally aspirated road car ever built and is still one of the most exclusive cars in the world. It’s top speed record has since been beaten, but a recently revealed video of the F1s record-breaking speed run comes to remind us of just how amazingly fast the F1 was in a time where fast didn’t come quite as easy as it does today. In the video you’re about to watch, you’ll see Le Mans winner Andy Wallace make several passes at the Ehra-Lessien proving ground, eventually pushing the F1 to the very threshold of its limits. All told the F1 actually hit 391 km, which is 242.956 mph, but because records average out two runs in opposing directions, the record was officially set at 240.1 mph.

In the video, you’ll see the in-car footage of this crazy record being set and can even hear everything Wallace had to say during the process. Once the car creeps over the 220 mph mark, you’ll finally get to see just how scary it really was for Wallace as the car was quite literally ready to take flight and even the slightest wrong move would have ended in disaster. But, that didn’t happen, and now we have the glory of sharing that experience with the man who pushed the F1 and himself to the limit. Click play and enjoy!

PostHeaderIcon Kia Sorento SXL – Driven

It’s hard to believe the Kia Sorento has been around since 2002, but this body-on-frame SUV turned unibody crossover has gained a respectable foothold in the American market thanks to its growing size and continually improvement refinement with each generation. Kia last reworked the Sorento for the 2016 model year. This third-generation crossover now wears a handsome exterior with a surprisingly supple and spacious interior. A few minor changes happen for the 2017 model year, including the addition of automatic emergency braking and making the Technology Package and V-6 standard equipment in the range-topping SXL.

Kia sent me such a model to test for a week. It came loaded with just about every option available, including all-wheel drive and that 3.3-liter V-6. Also packed in back is the Sorento’s optional third row seat, which actually comes standard on the SXL. Prices have also increased for 2017, with the base trims seeing as little as $290 and a whopping $4,000 for the SXL. The huge price jump on the SXL is patricianly explained by the $2,500 Technology Package being made standard, as well as the V-6. AWD is now the SXL’s only major option, though several smaller accessories can be purchased.

The 2017 Sorento is positioned to compete in two vehicle categories and in a higher pricing bracket than most would expect. It can be stacked against the two-row Ford Flex or the spacious, three-row Dodge Durango. It can compete with the family-friendly and affordable Hyundai Santa Fe Sport or the middle-class Jeep Grand Cherokee. It all depends on how the Kia Sorento is optioned. But how well does the Sorento perform at all these tasks? That’s what we’re here to find out.

Continue reading for the full driven review.

PostHeaderIcon Retro Review: MotorWeek Looks at Compact Pickups from 1986

The 80s is strong in this 28-miniute comparison review from MotorWeek as the “TV Magazine” judges the four main competitors in the compact pickup segment for the 1986 model year. It was the 1980s that truly solidified the compact pickup as an everyday workhorse and a time in truck history we love remembering. The field includes the Ford Ranger, Chevrolet S-10, Nissan Hard Body, Isuzu P’UP, and Mazda B-2000. Which one comes out on top? Keep reading to find out.

Don’t think I’m going to spoil the answer off the bat, though. This competition is worth the watch. MotorWeek runs the trucks through a battery of criteria that includes sporty appearance, utility, performance, drivability, and affordability. Despite most of them being subjective, these points show the differences between the trucks – two of which are “domestic” and the others being “imports.” Interestingly enough, the Nissan Hard Body was already being built in Tennessee in the mid-1980s.

The comparison test shows just how small these compact these trucks really were. Nothing on the market short of a Smart FourTwo comes close to how tight these trucks’ interiors really were. Modern day mid-size pickup would utterly dwarf these five contenders – not only in shear size, but also in functionality, safety, power, and “sporty styling.”

In the end, it came down to picking winners and losers. Isuzu brought up the rear with a fifth place finish, while Chevy brought in a surprising fourth place. It was Nissan and its Hard Body pickup that landed third place, while the Mazda shockingly came in second. Ford, however, took the top spot thanks to its wins in utility, performance, and drivability, the 1986 Ford Ranger took home MotorWeek’s top honors in this battle of the tiny trucks.

Watch the video and let us know what you think in the comments below. This blast-from-the-past is definitely worth the watch.

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