Top Gear Drops New Trailer For Season 25: Video

Are you ready for the new season of Top Gear? Well, you better be, because it’s charging up your rear-view mirror in a cloud of tire smoke, mechanical abuse, and slapstick comedy. This will be the 25th season for the British motoring program, and as evidenced by this 30-second clip, it looks to offer viewers plenty of sliding, lots of airborne antics, and a generous heaping of gratuitous displays of speed. The clip looks as though it’s set in an abandoned industrial center, which is set up in perfect Gymkhana-style with dirt, jumps, and several heavy things to run into. Making their appearance is the trio of new hosts, Matt LeBlanc, Rory Reid, and Chris Harris, who are piloting a Shelby Mustang GT350, Jaguar F-Type SVR and McLaren 570S, respectively. Making a cameo is long-time friend of the show, Ken Block, who’s looking to take a little time off from nearly sliding off mountains to issue some high-performance justice to the TG crew as some kind of deputized speed sheriff behind the wheel of a custom off-roader. Of course, the boys aren’t taking it sitting down, and you can guess what happens as a result…

The BBC should release Episode 1 of the new season of Top Gear sometime early next year. Stay tuned to TopSpeed for updates as we get them.

References

Read our full review on the 2017 McLaren 570S

Read our full review on the 2017 Jaguar F-Type SVR.

Read our full review on the 2017 Shelby Mustang GT350.

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China Government Bans 553 Cars Because Pollution

It’s no secret that China has some of the worst air pollution in the world even with a huge improvement over the last year. And, the Chinese government thinks it can make it even better. It all starts with the banning of 553 vehicle models that don’t meet fuel consumption standards. We have yet to see a full list of specific vehicles that have been banned, but we do know they include models from Chevy, Audi, and Mercedes Benz – models like the Audi FV7145LCDBG sedan (Audi A1,) Mercedes BJ302ETAL2 sedan, and Chevy’s SGM7161DAA2 sedan (Similar to a Chevy Aveo).
The production ban will commence on January 1st, 2018 according to the China Vehicle Technology Sevice Center and is the first official ban on specific vehicles in the country.

Wang Liushend, an analyst at China Merchants Securities, said, “To emphasize a cut back on energy consumption, such documents will surface frequently in the future. It’s an essential move to ensure the healthy development of the industry in the long run.”

As far as the number of vehicles actually produced in China, your guess is as good as ours, but according to the secretary general of the China Passenger Car Association, Cui Dongshu, those 553 models account for a “very small” percentage. Of course, vehicles are a very small part of China’s pollution problem, with air quality typically getting much worth in the winter months, as such, the country has worked tirelessly to switch homes from coal to natural gas heating and it has even reduced steel production by as much as 50 percent in some areas.

In the end, this ban might help the country a little bit, however, it’s a long road to travel, and you can surely expect the country to initialize more bans in the future. It has even said that it would like to jump on the wagon of banning vehicles powered by fossil fuel at some point – much like France and the U.K. have aimed to do by 2040. Is this what we can expect in the future. Will more countries, including the U.S. begin strong-arming automakers to quit producing certain vehicles? Is the move away from fossil fuels happening too soon? Are we really ready to go fossil fuel free in the next 20 years? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.

References

Read more Chinese cars news.

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2018 Lincoln Navigator Ad Has a Silent Matthew McConaughey and a Hidden Message

So, with all of the past Lincoln\McConaughey commercials and all of the weirdness that ensues, it’s pretty easy to feel disappointed here.
McConaughey is silent and does nothing more than drum on the steering wheel of his new Navigator as he waits for a train to pass. Once the train passes, he presses the button for “D” or drive, casts his typical smile, and drives off; not a word said. Now, everyone seems to be ragging on Lincoln and McConaughey for such a boring commercial. But, what everyone has seemed to miss is that the cabin of that Navigator is so quiet that you can hear McConaughey drumming on his steering wheel.

There’s nothing more to it really, and nothing less – either. Just a guy enjoying his day, drumming on his steering while as he waits for a train to pass. The point is that the cabin is quiet, so check out the advertisement for yourself and let us know what you think!

References

Lincoln Navigator

Read our full review on the 2018 Lincoln Navigator.

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Getting up to Speed With Aftermarket Infotainment Tech

Each December, we’re met with a deluge of holiday ads on TV. Some show off a car’s driving dynamics. Others highlight a luxurious ride or a great value. Increasingly, the commercials tout fancy new technology. Whatever the hook, a car invariably ends up in the driveway with a bow on Christmas morning. Then, each January, millions of us return to work in the same old vehicle we’ve been driving for years.

The average car on the road today is more than 11 years old, and the average owner holds onto his or her car for more than six years. IHS Markit, a research firm that tracks these and other industry numbers, attributes this to the increase in vehicle build quality. No matter how sturdy your old car might be, though, it’s still an old car, devoid of many of the niceties that have since been introduced.

If you’re one of the millions of people driving cars more than a few years old, you might have already resigned yourself to going years more without experiencing Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, or even rearview cameras, which beginning in May will be standard on all new cars. And because you purchased your car before some of these things even existed, you might not realize the aftermarket has already caught up. You might, like my fiancée and I, have just assumed you’d have to wait. As I discovered while searching for a Christmas gift, though, that is not the case.

She bought a 2008 Honda CR-V four years ago. The factory stereo—a basic AM/FM radio and CD player—required a code to unlock, and the dealer didn’t have it. So she drove for months with her phone perched in a cubby that sort of amplified the volume a little—good enough. We eventually found the code and were able to connect her phone via aux cable. That was fine until the buttons stopped working. At her last dealer visit, she was informed the motherboard was bad; the whole unit needed to be replaced. It’s been the phone in the cubby ever since. She, like many others, simply found a way to make do with a vehicle that was otherwise fine.

I walked into a car audio shop a few weeks ago thinking I’d walk out with a basic radio. Maybe it would have Bluetooth. I would’ve settled for an aux cable again. Instead, I was drawn toward a display featuring a $500 Pioneer AVH-2300NEX unit. It featured Bluetooth, yes. But it also had a 7.0-inch resistive touchscreen, a backup camera input, and both CarPlay and Android Auto. This realization was embarrassingly mind-blowing for me—in hindsight it should have been obvious—and it sent me back home for further research. (Other aftermarket suppliers, including Alpine, Clarion, JVC, Kenwood, and Sony, also feature Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility.)

I ended up going with a Pioneer AVIC-8201NEX, the company’s flagship unit. (Pioneer, a Motor Trend advertising partner, supplied it.) The $1,100 system also has a 7.0-inch screen, but it’s capacitive, a more familiar tech to those glued to their phones. A rearview camera is included, as well. Ted Cardenas, Pioneer’s VP of marketing, says its embedded navigation system is also “equal to or better than” what most OEMs offer, which he attributes to components of a higher quality and the flexibility of customization.

Motor Trend has no shortage of experience with those OEM systems, some of which we like more than others. In the coming month, we’ll review the installation process and compare Pioneer’s functionality with the systems found in new cars. We might also explore other aftermarket solutions for a more thorough evaluation of consumer options. Are the latest advances in aftermarket car stereos a worthy stopgap for the millions of Americans driving older cars? Or would my fiancée have been fine with the phone in the cubby for a little while longer? We’ll find out.

The post Getting up to Speed With Aftermarket Infotainment Tech appeared first on Motor Trend.

Source: http://ift.tt/JPPTFe

Getting up to Speed With Aftermarket Infotainment Tech

Each December, we’re met with a deluge of holiday ads on TV. Some show off a car’s driving dynamics. Others highlight a luxurious ride or a great value. Increasingly, the commercials tout fancy new technology. Whatever the hook, a car invariably ends up in the driveway with a bow on Christmas morning. Then, each January, millions of us return to work in the same old vehicle we’ve been driving for years.

The average car on the road today is more than 11 years old, and the average owner holds onto his or her car for more than six years. IHS Markit, a research firm that tracks these and other industry numbers, attributes this to the increase in vehicle build quality. No matter how sturdy your old car might be, though, it’s still an old car, devoid of many of the niceties that have since been introduced.

If you’re one of the millions of people driving cars more than a few years old, you might have already resigned yourself to going years more without experiencing Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, or even rearview cameras, which beginning in May will be standard on all new cars. And because you purchased your car before some of these things even existed, you might not realize the aftermarket has already caught up. You might, like my fiancée and I, have just assumed you’d have to wait. As I discovered while searching for a Christmas gift, though, that is not the case.

She bought a 2008 Honda CR-V four years ago. The factory stereo—a basic AM/FM radio and CD player—required a code to unlock, and the dealer didn’t have it. So she drove for months with her phone perched in a cubby that sort of amplified the volume a little—good enough. We eventually found the code and were able to connect her phone via aux cable. That was fine until the buttons stopped working. At her last dealer visit, she was informed the motherboard was bad; the whole unit needed to be replaced. It’s been the phone in the cubby ever since. She, like many others, simply found a way to make do with a vehicle that was otherwise fine.

I walked into a car audio shop a few weeks ago thinking I’d walk out with a basic radio. Maybe it would have Bluetooth. I would’ve settled for an aux cable again. Instead, I was drawn toward a display featuring a $500 Pioneer AVH-2300NEX unit. It featured Bluetooth, yes. But it also had a 7.0-inch resistive touchscreen, a backup camera input, and both CarPlay and Android Auto. This realization was embarrassingly mind-blowing for me—in hindsight it should have been obvious—and it sent me back home for further research. (Other aftermarket suppliers, including Alpine, Clarion, JVC, Kenwood, and Sony, also feature Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility.)

I ended up going with a Pioneer AVIC-8201NEX, the company’s flagship unit. (Pioneer, a Motor Trend advertising partner, supplied it.) The $1,100 system also has a 7.0-inch screen, but it’s capacitive, a more familiar tech to those glued to their phones. A rearview camera is included, as well. Ted Cardenas, Pioneer’s VP of marketing, says its embedded navigation system is also “equal to or better than” what most OEMs offer, which he attributes to components of a higher quality and the flexibility of customization.

Motor Trend has no shortage of experience with those OEM systems, some of which we like more than others. In the coming month, we’ll review the installation process and compare Pioneer’s functionality with the systems found in new cars. We might also explore other aftermarket solutions for a more thorough evaluation of consumer options. Are the latest advances in aftermarket car stereos a worthy stopgap for the millions of Americans driving older cars? Or would my fiancée have been fine with the phone in the cubby for a little while longer? We’ll find out.

The post Getting up to Speed With Aftermarket Infotainment Tech appeared first on Motor Trend.

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Project Millenium Falcon – Land Rover Defender

Project Millenium Falcon – Land Rover Defender

Project Millenium Falcon

Project Millenium Falcon is a comprehensively rebuilt Land Rover Defender, created by the Florida-based team at East Coast Defender. Under the hood it’s now packing a 430 hp, 6.2 litre Chevrolet LS3 V8 – and that’s just the beginning.

During the rebuild the body was fitted with a Kahn wide body kit to accommodate the new 18” Boost/Kahn black alloy wheels with BF Goodrich All-Terrain tires. The LS3 is fitted with a stainless steel Borla performance exhaust, and up front there’s a new alloy radiator with an electric fan – the stock radiator would never have been able to keep up with the new engine.

Inside the cabin, the original seats have been swapped out for a set of All-America Series Performance seats, paired with black procure headliner, and a new suede Puma dash. The dials were replaced by All American series classic gauges, and new LED lighting was added throughout.

A full external roll cage was bolted into place for any potential mishaps off road, and a new steel bumper was added up front with LED lights and a Warn winch for rescuing bogged Toyotas.

For added convenience when out on the road, the team at East Coast Defender have fitted an Amazon Echo unit with wifi, and there’s seating for 6 adults – two in the front and four in the back. If you’d like to see more from the talented folks at ECD you can click here to visit their website.

East Coast Defender

East Coast Defender is one of the pre-eminent Land Rover customizers in the United States, the company has 29 full-time employees and is made up of a mixture of Brits and Americans. They’re based in Kissimmee, Florida, and they’ve built a significant number of bespoke Defenders – all of which are quicker and more luxurious than any examples that left the Land Rover factory.

A Brief History of the Land Rover Defender

The Land Rover Defender was the successor to the Series III, it was originally called the Ninety or the One Ten (a reference to the wheelbase length in inches). As the Land Rover model range grew it was decided to rename the line to Defender 90 and Defender 110 to avoid any confusion.

To say the Defender had large shoes to fill would be a remarkable understatement. The Series I, Series II, Series IIA, and Series III Land Rovers took the world by storm and were very often the first motorised vehicle ever seen by people in developing nations.

The new Defender maintained the same basic structure as the Series vehicles, with a body-on-chassis design utilising a steel frame, a steel bulkhead, and aluminium body panels. Under the skin the Defender had been significantly updated with wider track axles, coil springs as opposed to leaf springs, a full-time 4×4 system borrowed from the Range Rover, and a lockable centre diff.

The interior had seen significant (and some would say overdue) upgrades over the Series Land Rovers, much improving the seats, sound-proofing, dashboard and instruments, and even offering amenities like air-conditioning and stereos.

Over the 3 decades of its production the Defender would get progressively more comfortable without sacrificing any of its raw off-road ability, and examples from the final few years of production are now highly sought after. Land Rover stopped making the Defender in early 2016 – largely due to increasingly stringent crash safety laws that the model couldn’t meet with its older-style body-on-frame structure.

Land Rover have announced more recently an intention to introduce a new Defender, likely with a unibody design and significantly updated styling. It’s widely hoped that Land Rover will stay true to the DNA of the model when they officially unveil the new Defender in 2019 – but only time will tell.

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The post Project Millenium Falcon – Land Rover Defender appeared first on Silodrome.

Source: https://silodrome.com December 31, 2017 at 04:15PM

Little Lisa

1958 Iso Isetta Convertible 

In the years after World War II, Europe was desperate for transportation and the more economical it was, the better. Several creative innovators responded to the opportunity with a generation of microcars powered by one or two cylinder engines with displacements measured in fractions of a liter.
One of these builders was Renzo Rivolta, whose Isothermos company, based in Bolzaneto, near Genoa, branched out from industrial refrigerators to make scooters and eventually cars under the brand “Iso Automobili”. The cars were in fact built in the factory where, up until the WW2, the iconic luxury cars and eventually aircraft engines Isotta Fraschini used to be produced. Renzo Rivolta’s idea was to make a diminutive two-seater car, powered by a single-cylinder two-stroke engine and he named his project “Isetta” (in Italian, little Lisa).
In order to make his dream come true, Rivolta engaged a young aeronautical engineer, Ermenegildo Preti, who co-operated with another aeronautical engineer, Pierluigi Raggi, to design the bodywork. Preti and Raggi, starting from a project that Preti used for his degree thesis, designed a car featuring an egg-shaped bodywork with the access at the front trough a large door (with the steering wheel hinged to it), very large windows, two front wheels and, initially, just one rear driving wheel, immediately replaced by two wheels (very close each other in order to avoid the differential gear) to reduce the risks in case of flat tyre. The engine, called Iso 200, was a 198cc, 8.5 hp, air-cooled unit, based on the design of the ignition engine of the Isotta Fraschini aircraft engines used during the WWII . The gearbox was 4-speed with no reverse gear. The microcar was capable of surprising 75 km/h but the small engine struggled to push the car up the hills and the first 50 being reached in around half a minute…
When the Isetta was officially introduced at the Turin motor show in 1953, the price, lower than the popular Fiat 500 Topolino’s, wasn’t though low enough to be affordable by the large Italian public. Despite the car did very well at 1000Miglia race and other famous competitions, the sales were struggling.
Luckily, in 1954 at the Geneva Motor Show the small car was noticed by a Swiss BMW importer, who alerted the parent company. At the time, BMW was submersed by payables and close to bankrupt. A BMW representative was sent to the Turin show few months later to meet Rivolta and close a preliminary agreement for granting the patent: the final agreement was reached in Milan few days later, and BMW could start producing Isetta.
The BMW 250 was introduced in March 1955. Compared to the Isetta, the German version had descending windows and a heating system that made it more comfortable, it was also powered by a 250cc motorcycling engine that provided a power of 12.5 hp.
The BMW 250 was a real success. It immediately convinced press and users: low fuel consumption, good level of comfort, innovative design and affordable price. When 50,000 units sold were reached, BMW sent to Rivolta a formal thanks-you letter. BMW also produced a 300cc and 600cc version. The little Isetta, snobbed in her home country, became the first low-consumption car produced in series and the best-selling single cylinder in the history of the automobile. Thanks to the gains from the sales of this small car, BMW found the liquidity to resume the research and development of new car models to be launched on the market and to get out from the crysis.
Iso also licensed Isetta manufacture to companies in a number of countries including France, Spain, Brazil. This 1958 Spanish-built Isetta is one of those cars, provided with a black vinyl folding sunroof, indeed a safety feature in case a front-end collision blocked the Isetta’s single front door. The bumpers are unusually substantial, a feature of the Iso Espana built cars, and it has four wheels (some British-built Isettas had three so they could qualify for reduced taxation as a motorcycle) and is powered by the Iso single cylinder, double piston 2-stroke engine. 
Negli anni successivi alla seconda guerra mondiale, l’Europa era alla disperata ricerca di mezzi di trasporto economici. Molte menti creative e innovatrici colsero l’opportunità e diedero vita a una generazione di microvetture mono e bicilindriche con cilindrate misurabili in frazioni di un litro.
Uno di questi costruttori fu Renzo Rivolta, la cui Isothermos di Bolzaneto, vicino a Genova, si allontanò dalla produzione di frigoriferi industriali per fabbricare scooter e vetture con il marchio "Iso Automobili". Le automobili vennero infatti costruite nella fabbrica dove, fino alla seconda guerra mondiale erano state costruite le iconiche auto di lusso e poi i motori aeronautici Isotta Fraschini. L’idea di Renzo Rivolta era quella di realizzare una minuscola auto a due posti, l’ “Isetta”, motorizzata da un monocilindrico due tempi.
Per realizzare il suo progetto, Rivolta ingaggiò due giovani ingegneri aeronautici, Ermenegildo Preti e Pierluigi Raggi. Preti e Raggi, partendo da un progetto che Preti aveva utilizzato per la sua tesi di laurea, progettarono un’auto con una carrozzeria a forma di uovo e l’accesso dalla parte anteriore attraverso un portellone (su cui era incernierato il volante), ampi finestrini, due le ruote anteriori e, inizialmente, una sola ruota motrice posteriore, immediatamente sostituita da due ruote (molto vicine l’una all’altra per evitare il differenziale) per ridurre i rischi in caso di foratura. Il motore, l’Iso 200, era un’unità da 198 cc, 8,5 CV, raffreddata ad aria, basata sul progetto del motore di accensione dei propulsori aeronautici Isotta Fraschini utilizzati durante la seconda guerra mondiale. Il cambio era a 4 marce senza retromarcia. La vetturetta era sorprendentemente capace di 75 km/h, ma il piccolo motore faticava a spingere l’auto in saluta e i 50 all’ora si raggiungevano con difficoltà in meno di 30 secondi…
Quando l’Isetta fu presentata ufficialmente al salone dell’automobile di Torino nel 1953, il prezzo, inferiore alla popolare Fiat 500 Topolino, non era però abbastanza basso per essere accessibile dal grande pubblico italiano. Nonostante la macchina avesse ben figurato alla 1000 Miglia e ad altre competizioni famose, le vendite stentavano a decollare.
Fortunatamente, nel 1954, la piccola automobile fu notata al Motor Show di Ginevra da un importatore svizzero della BMW, che avvisò la casa madre. A quel tempo, la BMW era sommersa dai debiti e vicina al fallimento. Pochi mesi dopo, BMW inviò il suo Responsabile Collaudi al Salone di Torino per incontrare Rivolta e chiudere un preliminare per la concessione del brevetto: l’accordo finale fu raggiunto a Milano pochi giorni dopo, e la BMW poté iniziare a produrre l’Isetta.
La BMW 250 fu presentata nel marzo 1955. Rispetto all’Isetta, la versione tedesca aveva finestrini discendenti e un sistema di riscaldamento che la rendeva più confortevole, ed godeva di un motore di origini motociclistiche di 250cc che forniva una potenza di 12,5 CV.
La BMW 250 fu un vero successo. Convinse immediatamente stampa e utenti: bassi consumi, buon livello di comfort, design innovativo e prezzo accessibile. Quando furono raggiunte le 50.000 unità vendute, BMW inviò a Rivolta un formale ringraziamento. BMW ne produsse anche versioni di 300cc e 600cc. La piccola Isetta, snobbata nel suo paese d’origine, divenne la prima auto a basso consumo prodotta in serie e il monocilindro più venduto nella storia dell’automobile. Grazie ai guadagni derivanti dalle vendite di questa piccola auto, la BMW trovò le risorse per riprendere la ricerca e lo sviluppo di nuovi modelli e uscire dalla crisi.
Iso concesse in licenza la produzione dell’Isetta in diversi paesi tra cui Francia, Spagna, Brasile.
Questa Isetta, costruita nel 1958 in Spagna, è una di quelle vetturette realizzate all’estero. Il tetto apribile aveva anche funzione di di via di fuga nel caso che un incidente bloccasse l’unico accesso anteriore. I paraurti, insolitamente importanti, erano una caratteristica delle auto costruite dall’Iso Espana. Ha quattro ruote (alcune Isette di costruzione britannica ne avevano tre in modo che potessero godere della tassazione ridotta riservata ai motocicli) ed è motorizzata dal monocilindrico due tempi e doppio pistone della Iso.

Source: http://ift.tt/2jgWT4U December 31, 2017 at 03:40PM

Cobra Lucky Custom

Quando si percorre sempre la stessa strada si arriva sempre allo stesso punto. Quelli di Lucky Custom erano di fronte a una scelta, fare quello che avevano già fatto altri oppure provare qualcosa di nuovo .
Invece si perseguire la strada di costruire un tracker o una motard, hanno deciso di fare un mix tra le due e cosi con un nuovo percorso sono arrivati a un risultato diverso. 


Sulla base di un piccola Honda 250 Tornado (un leggera enduro venduta nel mercato del Sud America)  hanno iniziato con la riprogettazione del telaio cosi che potesse seguire la sagoma inferiore del serbatoio del carburante…. serbatoio che è stato anche fabbricato in modo artigianale e espressamente per questa moto.
Su un lato si trova un indicatore di livello di carburante trasparente.

Per adottare ruote e pneumatici più grandi sono stati necessari montare un nuovo forcellone , che però ha richiesto tanto lavoro per l’allineamento tra pignone corona e freno posteriore.
Minimale è l’impianto luci che utilizza lampade a led… il tutto appare esile e compatto.
cosi come il corto scarico che sale in modo verticale subito dopo la pedana destra, si proprio con un Cobra in fase di attacco.

Lucky Custom | facebook 

December 31, 2017 at 02:35PMSource: RocketGarage http://ift.tt/opz3Y8