Saturday, August 30, 2008


The luxury division of DaimlerChrysler has begun a study on using bionics in a car as a way to better conserve fuel and the study team looked to nature for the design of the vehicle. What they found was that the boxfish was an excellent Engineers patterned the vehicle on the boxfish's unique features, mimicking the fish's streamlined profile to improve the car's aerodynamics, while adopting the animal's boxy frame to increase strength and stability. Drawing on biology to develop new technology — a concept known as bionics — enabled the designers to create a diesel-powered car prototype that can achieve speeds of up to 118 miles an hour (190 kilometers an hour) and boasts fuel economy of 70 miles a gallon (30 kilometers per liter). When run at a constant speed of 90 km/h, fuel consumption decreases to only 2.8L/100 km. (84 mpg.)
Daimler Chrysler is using an additional operating fluid known as 'AdBlue' in the bionic car to help decrease the amount of emissions by up to 80%. AdBlue is an aqueous urea solution that is sprayed into the exhaust system and converts nitrogen oxides into harmless nitrogen and water.The structure of the bionic car uses the principles of bone formation to allow for a very light weight with high rigidity. According to Daimler-Chrysler, if this design principle is used throughout the entire car, the weight can be reduced by a third and it won't lose any of its strength or crash safety.An excellent example of an aerodynamic animal.


The BMW M6 Convertible is a unique performer featuring the internationally acclaimed engine of the year – the 5.0-liter V10 – which produces an awesome 507 bhp and maximum torque of 383 lb-ft. With a suspension developed for supreme dynamics and a Sequential M Gearbox (SMG) complete with Drivelogic, this ultimate power unit turns the latest product from BMW M into an open sports car able to accelerate to 62 mBoasting a 507 bhp V10 power unit, the BMW M6 Convertible is a pledge to power and performance. The entire power and performance concept behind this engine is derived directly from Motorsport; in the process of developing its maximum output, the V10 power unit revs all the way to 8,250 rpm, reaching engine speeds otherwise only found in a purebred racing car.


Unlike many concept cars that throw practicality out the window in an effort to achieve fuel economy or light weight, the Hungarian-designed Antro Solo manages to fit three adults while returning excellent fuel figures and highway speeds.Built almost exclusively from carbon fiber composite materials, the Solo weighs in at just 270kg. Seating is arranged like that found in the McLaren F1: the driver sits in the center, flanked by a passenger on each side. The light weight and hybrid design allow it to achieve fuel efficiency between 1.5L and 2.0L/100km (117-157mpg US) while also attaining a top speed of 140km/h (87mph). The car derives its power from a series of technologies, including solar power, human power and a standard combustion-electric hybrid system.
The combustion engine is a small flex-fuel unit capable of running on petrol or ethanol, but the engine is only designed to be required for the longest trips the Solo makes. Short trips, between 15km-25km, can be made on solar power alone, thanks to the large array of high-efficiency solar panels stretched across the vehicle’s roof. The pedals in front of each passenger can also be used to power the generator, which stores the power in the car’s batteries, helping to keep the car in electric-only mode, reports the AFP. Once the human power is tired out, or when driving alone, the combustion engine kicks in to move things along.
Already built in prototype form, the car was recently displayed at the Budapest Museum of Transport for press and public viewing. Volume production is planned to begin in 2012, with the price of the Solo to start around €12,000 (US$18,000). A larger model, called the Duo and offering room for six but otherwise essentially identical, could follow. There are even plans to make the Duo capable of being split into two Solos with just 10 minutes of work.
The overall package is an impressive but dauntingly difficult combination of technology, design and innovation. If the company can in fact pull off mass production within four years, while meeting the necessary safety standards and still achieving its performance and efficiency specifications, and coming it at the projected price figure, the car will be a runaway success. But there will be no shortage of hurdles to clear along the way.


Buyers of Mazda’s next-generation RX-8 really will be having a ‘gas’! That’s because the firm is planning to offer it with a hydrogen-powered engine, Auto Express can reveal.
In a bid to curb the current car’s high fuel consumption and emissions, Mazda has decided the only way to make its rotary engine clean and green is to offer a dual-fuel version capable of running on both hydrogen and petrol. Mazda has been experimenting with hydrogen power for more than two years now, firstly in the RX-8 Hydrogen RE, and more recently in the Premacy MPV.
One source close to the firm suggested top brass will even discard the RX-8 name and employ a new badge, most probably RX-9, to highlight the coupĂ©’s hydrogen-petrol dual-fuel powertrain.
Expected to be rear-wheel drive and take styling cues from the Taiki concept, the new RX-9 will offer a choice of manual or automatic transmissions and generate up to 20% better economy and emissions than the current test mule.
But given that power falls by around 20% when switched to hydrogen mode, engineers envisage owners using it for city driving, then flicking to petrol when more performance is required.
In this way, Mazda expects to improve the rotary’s economy, performance and emissions levels, bringing them more in line with petrol-electric hybrids. Sales are likely to start in 2012.

Friday, August 29, 2008


Top fuel dragsters accelerate at up to 5g from standing start. The nitromethane injection produces 6000 BHP.
An airbag moves up to 4500 mph within a second when triggered. A force of 200g is generated. They are designed to explode at an impact speed of 19 mph. The bag inflates within 40 milliseconds of a crash.
The Ferrari Formula 1 team is unique in the fact that it produces both chassis and engines for its cars.
Ferrari makes a maximum of 14 cars every day.
Only 107 models of the Ford GT40 were made of which only 7 were road cars.
The first known automobile was built in 1668.
Luxembourg has the most crowded roads in Europe with almost 570 cars per 1,000 people.
The first car race ever seen in the United States was held in Chicago in 1895. The track ran from Chicago to Evanston. The winner was J. Frank Duryea, whose average speed was 71.5 miles per hour.