Latest Road Tests and Reviews
The snow was falling and Subarus were everywhere as Turoa ski field hosted another fantastic Subaru Top Weekend on August 22-23 at Mt Ruapehu. An early start for Subaru owners paid off, as the top Read More
Ford is continuing to push hard in advancements to its vehicle safety features and is doubling the availability of rear view camera systems in models for 2009. Ford’s rear view camera system is unique in that it displays video at bumper level in the rear view mirror as opposed to the navigation system. Customers can purchase the camera system without having to buy the expensive sat navigation unit.
In the states the rear view camera will find its way onto 75% of Ford models by the end of next year, including most trucks, SUVs and crossovers. The system will also be available on the new Ford Mustang, which Ford says is the only rear camera on a sports car.
Ford is continuing to push hard in advancements to its vehicle saf ...
Mitsuoka the Japanese company that is famous for transforming existing cars into wannabe classic British-style rides is at it again. It’s latest effort is an instant classic, it’s called the Himiko and it clearly wants to be a Morgan. The source for this unique vehicle is the Mazda MX-5, itself a throw back to British roadsters of old. The conversion is amazing and the Himiko gives little clue to its MX-5 base, except for the doors. The car even comes with a retractable hardtop. Totally brilliant.
Mitsuoka the Japanese company that is famous for transforming exis ...
If you have a lazy $6 billion ($11.2 billion NZ) laying around then Volvo could be yours. Ford first purchased Volvo for $6.4 billion back in 1999. Now, a decade later, unconfirmed reports say the automaker is asking nearly the same amount $6 billion for the Swedish brand. Ford are desperately trying to cut costs in an attempt to woo Washington a government bailout. But Volvo as attractive as it once was, like everyone else the automaker is struggling in today’s market as reported sales in the third-quarter were down 24%. Volvo has cut thousands of jobs, and has even been in recent talks with the Swedish government about financial support.
Potential interest in the sale may come from SAIC Motor Corp, China’s largest automaker and possibly Hyundai, but the fate of Volvo is at this stage uncertain.
If you have a lazy $6 billion ($11.2 billion NZ) laying around then Vo ...
Volkswagen’s new Scirocco is rapidly becoming a popular canvas for customising, and the VW factory itself is getting into the act. Released for the Bologna Motor Show this week is the Scirocco Study R, which might be an early preview of a production version called the Scirocco R20T.
The Study R is quite understated in white with subtle striping, red mirrors and a nostriled hood. Power is provided by a 2.0 litre TFSI engine that puts power through a six-speed DSG gearbox. Suspension and braking systems have also been tweaked, and a less restrictive exhaust offers a healthy growl.
With the demise of the R32, Volkswagen might bring out the R20T in the near future to appease VW fans who want to go faster than most.
Volkswagen's new Scirocco is rapidly becoming a popular canvas for ...
Maserati has developed a special series of new options named “MC Sport Line”, which make their worldwide debut at the Bologna Motor Show, with new content that adds to Maserati’s range of personalisation options. The “MC Sport Line” is designed to enhance the sporty DNA of Maseratis for those customers who like to express their passion for racing through dynamic styling and a choice of technical additions.
The GranTurismo S was the model chosen to first present the “MC Sport Line” catalogue to the public, which will be extended to the GranTurismo range and then will ultimately encompass the entire Maserati line-up during the course of 2009.
Aerodynamics can be modified thanks to the addition of front and rear carbon-fibre spoilers, which benefit from track tests conducted on the GranTurismo MC Concept; the new aerodynamics not only optimise the vertical load but give the car a very distinctive appearance. The sporty look of the exterior can be completed with carbon fibre mirror housings and door handles. The same dark shade is reflected in the glossy black 20″ wheel rims that perfectly match the dark line of the exterior.
The steering wheel rim is also made from carbon fibre, as are the paddle shifts for the electro-actuated transmission and the body of the instrument panel, dashboard and door panels, featuring carbon moulding. Looking at the central tunnel, carbon fibre dominates the entire section. The “MC” pedal block complete with kickplate to the left is machined from solid aluminium.
Under the “skin”, the suspension has been stiffened thanks to new, stiffer springs, shock absorbers and anti-roll bars; the new suspension set-up is synchronised with a specific Maserati Stability Programme software. The car is now 10 mm lower than the GranTurismo S.
All the new features are available either as part of the customisation package, following the indications of Maserati designers or individually.
Maserati has developed a special series of new options named "MC S ...
Now that the 2009 Mini Convertible has been unleashed onto the Internet, we can expect to see vigorous marketing as the automaker tries to keep up the positive momentum in sales over the past year. Mini has always had clever ads for its retro hatches, and that trend will continue with the latest 2009 Convertible, which is set to debut at the Detroit Auto Show next month. Earlier marketing attempts have humorously suggested that it’s never a good idea to lower the top, and a similar theme is being used again. Check out the fresh examples in the Gallery.
Now that the 2009 Mini Convertible has been unleashed onto the Int ...
The new 2010 Mustang pricing has recently been released for the domestic American market and it has many Ford enthusiasts excited. Ford are continuing its tradition offering the Mustang as a cheaper option than its peers.
The American base price for a standard V6-powered 2010 Mustang is reportedly $21,845 ($41,358 NZ). By comparison, its biggest competitor will be the Camaro, which starts at $22,995 ($43,505 NZ). The other revived pony car is the Dodge Challenger, which in base SE form begins with a $22,545 ($42,653 NZ) sticker price. Each of these entry-level models comes equipped with a standard V6 engine, though the Challenger comes only with a four-speed automatic while its competitors offer a stick. Anyone wanting an open-air experience has no choice but to opt for the Ford, as the Blue Oval’s offering is the only modern musclecar with an optional drop-top.
Going up to a V8-powered Mustang will reportedly run you $27,995 ($52,964 NZ) — quite a bit cheaper than the V8-powered Camaro’s $30,995 ($58,628 NZ) price tag. Dodge’s entry runs $30,545 ($57,776 NZ) for the base R/T model and its HEMI V8. It’s not exactly a direct comparison, as the Mustang GT is down a bit on power compared to its rivals, but with the GT’s cut-rate pricing it should be enough to make sure the Ford is a very popular vehicle.
The new 2010 Mustang pricing has recently been released for the do ...
I once worked for BMW NZ, it was in the parts department, I lifted a lot of disc brakes, stayed out of trouble and was very occasionally allowed to dive a real BMW.
It was always my dream to steal one BMW part a day and slowly begin assembling a 5-series in my bedroom. Despite the numerous flaws in this master plan, what foiled me before I even began was the fact that I had no idea where everything went. I worked all day surrounded by thousands of parts fresh from Munich but didn’t know how to sort them all out.
If I had the Mr Stephens’ Engine Shop educational game, right now I might be deciding which bedroom wall to smash through to release my finished 5-series. But sadly it’s too late for me.
You can still learn by checking out the game which is found amongst other cool stuff on the General Motors website. In the game you help assemble a Corvette ZR1 engine. If GM was as good at making reasonably-sized vehicles as it is at making cheesy games then it might not be on the verge of bankruptcy.
I once worked for BMW NZ, it was in the parts department, I lifted a l ...