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Found 220 results

  1. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 9, 2013 Opel and Vauxhall are trying to kill two birds with one stone with their showing at next month's Geneva Motor Show. The two have released some sketches of a new Adam concept called the Adam Rocks. The Adam Rocks concept is described as 'an urban mini-crossover'. Compared to the production Adam, the Rocks concept rides about 15 mm higher and has a wider stance. The sketches show the concept will wear front and rear skid plates, body cladding on the wheel arches and bumpers, and a central mounted exhaust. The Adam Rocks concept also features retractable fabric roof. “As a symbol for fashion-led, active drivers wanting to stand out from the crowd, ADAM ROCKS is just one possible answer to the question of how new development paths for the absolutely unique car can be forged – and others will follow,” said Malcolm Ward, Opel/Vauxhall Lead Design Director. Source: Opel Album: Opel Adam Rocks Concept Sketches 3 images 0 comments William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 Opel ADAM ROCKS Concept: Freedom in its most individual form ADAM ROCKS in Geneva – a new crossover open air concept New ROCKS Concept raises ADAM to the next level of individualization First urban mini-crossover has fierce design and muscular proportions Open air freedom thanks to fabric roof World Premiere at Geneva Motor Show (March 7-17, 2013) Geneva/Rüsselsheim. Offering 61,000 exterior variations and nearly 82,000 for the interior, as well as a state-of-the-art IntelliLink infotainment system, the lifestyle Opel ADAM is the true champion of individualization – and the best connected small car around. But that is not enough for Opel. At the Geneva Motor Show, Opel will show that it explores ways of further enhancing ADAM’s individualization and reveal an urban mini-crossover study called ADAM ROCKS. With its new 3-door body style, its 3.70 meters in length, muscular proportions, fierce design and open-air capability, ADAM ROCKS also is a proposal for opening a new segment of the market. Showcasing how ADAM’s unique personalization program can get another twist, the ROCKS Concept has been created for those seeking personal freedom ‘off the beaten track’ beyond the urban landscape. Inspired by Parkour urban athletes, it is higher and wider on its wheels, tougher and more compact in appearance. The ADAM ROCKS’ special feeling of personal freedom is further emphasized by its cabrio looks and fabric roof that offers a free view of the sky above. The fabric extends across the entire width and length of the roof, right back to the C-pillars. “With even bolder design than any other ADAM, the ROCKS is an impressive demonstration of how much more potential for individualization our new small lifestyle car still offers after its market launch. It combines the toughness of a crossover with the coolness of open air driving,” says Malcolm Ward, Opel/Vauxhall Lead Design Director. Describing the rationale behind Opel’s newest concept car, he explains: “As a symbol for fashion-led, active drivers wanting to stand out from the crowd, ADAM ROCKS is just one possible answer to the question of how new development paths for the absolutely unique car can be forged – and others will follow.” ADAM’s new concept will rock at Geneva Motor Show on the Opel stand, Hall 2.
  2. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 9, 2013 Last year, SRT introduced the special edition Charger SRT8 Super Bee which dropped many of the luxury features found in the Charger SRT8, with a lower pricetag. The Super Bee model must have been a success since SRT is keeping the Charger Super Bee for 2013 and introducing two new models with this ideal. Called Core, this trim level offered on the 2013 Chrysler 300 SRT8 and Dodge Challenger SRT8 392 offers the same levels of performance, but at lower cost. First up is the 2013 Chrysler 300 SRT8 Core. It loses the adaptive suspension, leather seats, navigation, and other features. What it does retain is the large 8.4-inch touchscreen and the option of red-painted calipers. The pricetag? $44,990 (includes $995 destination charge), which is $4,000 less than the regular 300C SRT8. Next is the Dodge Challenger SRT8 392 Core which loses out on adaptive suspension, adaptive exhaust, fog lights, high-power stereo, high-intensity-discharge headlights,forged twenty-inch wheels, and leather seats. Instead the Core model goes with cloth seats, cast aluminum wheels, and 392 decals. How much? $39,990 with six-speed manual transmission (includes $995 destination charge), which is $4,780 less than a standard Challenger SRT8 392. The 300 SRT8 and Challenger SRT8 392 Core arrive at dealers this summer. Source: Chrysler William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 SRT Brand Adds New 'Core' Performance Models to 2013 Vehicle Lineup -New models of Dodge Challenger SRT8 and Chrysler 300 SRT8 offer a back-to-basics performance recipe for the enthusiast customers who crave the core power, handling and capability features of their cars -Newly added and historically significant exterior colors HEMI® Orange Pearl Coat, TorRed Clear Coat and Plum Crazy Pearl Coat make return on existing Challenger SRT8 models and Dodge Charger SRT8 models -New 300 SRT8 "Core" model is available in eight exterior colors -New models expected to arrive in dealer showrooms this summer February 7, 2013 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - Chrysler Group LLC's SRT (Street and Racing Technology) brand is expanding its "Core SRT" vehicle strategy from the successful Charger SRT8 Super Bee and SRT Viper by offering new 2013 "Core" models of the Dodge Challenger SRT8 and Chrysler 300 SRT8. "With exclusive content, including the standard premium 'Ballistic' cloth interior from the new SRT Viper, SRT-tuned sport suspensions and distinctive exterior accents, the new Challenger SRT8 and 300 SRT8 'Core' models are designed and built with the back-to-basics performance driving enthusiast in mind," said Ralph Gilles, President and CEO - SRT Brand and Motorsports, Chrysler Group LLC. New 2013 Dodge Challenger SRT8 "Core" Model On the exterior, the new 2013 Challenger SRT8 "Core" model features a black grille and black SRT rear spoiler, unique black 392 decal on the front fenders, 20-inch cast-aluminum wheels with black painted pockets and black Brembo brake calipers. New exterior colors for the Challenger SRT8 "Core" lineup include HEMI® Orange Pearl Coat and Plum Crazy Pearl Coat, in addition to the existing color options, which include Billet Silver Metallic Clear Coat, Bright White Clear Coat, Granite Crystal Metallic Pearl Coat, Jazz Blue Pearl Coat, Pitch Black and TorRed Clear Coat. Phantom Black Tri-coat Pearl and Redline Tri-coat Pearl are exclusive to the 2013 Challenger SRT8 392 models. On the inside of the new "Core" model, seating surfaces use the same premium "Ballistic" cloth inserts from the SRT Viper and are flanked by dark slate gray "Axel" cloth bolsters and door bolster inserts and feature a mini-carbon bezel instrument panel. All 2013 Challenger SRT8 models are powered by the proven 392-cubic inch (6.4-liter) HEMI V-8 that delivers 470 horsepower (351 kW) and 470 lb.-ft. (637 N•m) of torque. The torque band is extremely flat allowing for strong standing starts and improved straight-line performance throughout the rpm range. An advanced active intake manifold along with high-lift cam with phasing provides maximum low-end torque and high-end power while still delivering 23 miles per gallon on the highway with the standard manual transmission or available automatic transmission. Performance-tuned engine mounts improve idle stability and ride control at all speeds. All 2013 Challenger SRT8 models accelerate from 0-60 mph in the high 4-second range; run the quarter mile in mid-12-second range with the automatic transmission (high 12-second range with the manual); go from 0-100-0 mph in the low 15s, reach a top speed of 182 mph with the manual transmission (175 mph with the automatic) and stop from 60-0 mph in just 117 feet. The starting U.S. Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) for the new 2013 Dodge Challenger SRT8 "Core" model is $38,995 (plus $995 destination). New 2013 Chrysler 300 SRT8 "Core" Model The new 2013 Chrysler 300 SRT8 "Core" model features a 6.4L badge on the front fenders – a first for the 300 SRT8 – 20-inch cast-aluminum wheels with black painted pockets and standard black Brembo brake calipers (also available in red). On the inside of the new "Core" model, black seating surfaces use the same premium "Ballistic" cloth inserts from the SRT Viper and are flanked by black "Axel" cloth bolsters and door bolster inserts. Various matte carbon and piano black accents surround the instrument panel, door bezels and center console. Under the hood of every Chrysler 300 SRT8 model is the 6.4-liter HEMI V-8 delivering 470 horsepower (351 kW) and 470 lb.-ft. (637 N•m) of torque. On the highway, up to 23 mpg is achieved by use of an active valve exhaust system that allows the standard Fuel Saver Technology (four-cylinder mode) to engage over a wide rpm range. The active exhaust system also allows for straight-through mid and rear mufflers for a throaty exhaust note under engine load. Performance numbers include 0-60 mph acceleration in the high 4-second range; quarter mile in high 12-second range; 0-100-0 mph in less than 16 seconds, top speed of 175 mph and stopping power from 60-0 mph in 120 feet. Eight exterior colors are available throughout the 2013 Chrysler 300 SRT8 lineup, including Billet Silver Metallic Clear Coat, Bright White Clear Coat, Deep Cherry Red Pearl Coat, Gloss Black Clear Coat, Granite Crystal Pearl Coat, Ivory Pearl Tri-coat, Jazz Blue Pearl Coat and Phantom Black Tri-coat Pearl. The starting U.S. MSRP for the new 2013 Chrysler 300 SRT8 "Core" model is $43,995 (plus $995 destination). 2013 Dodge Charger SRT8 Super Bee The 2013 Dodge Charger SRT8 Super Bee features a unique SRT badge with a 3-D helmeted bee mascot on the new split crosshair grille finished in Gloss Black. Both front fenders tout the historically significant V-8 engine with "392 HEMI" badges first seen on the 2011 Dodge Challenger SRT8 392. Flanking both rear fenders are the legendary round Super Bee graphics, which now include the wording "Powered by SRT" to commemorate the modern incarnation of this celebrated performance icon. Returning from the 2012 model are the five-spoke cast-aluminum 20-inch wheels with black painted pockets and black Brembo brake calipers that provide a unique performance look. New exterior colors now available on the 2013 Charger SRT8 Super Bee include the historically significant HEMI® Orange Pearl Coat and Plum Crazy Pearl Coat. The Charger SRT8 Super Bee is also available in Bright White Clear Coat, Pitch Black Clear Coat and TorRed Clear Coat. The Dodge Charger SRT8 Super Bee is powered by the same 6.4-liter HEMI V-8 that delivers 470 horsepower (351 kW) and 470 (637 N•m) lb.-ft. of torque. On the highway, up to 23 mpg is achieved by use of an active valve exhaust system that allows the standard Fuel Saver Technology (four-cylinder mode) to engage over a wide rpm range. The active exhaust system also allows for straight-through mid and rear mufflers for a throaty exhaust note under engine load. Performance numbers include 0-60 mph acceleration in the high 4-second range; quarter mile in the high 12-second range; 0-100-0 mph in less than 16 seconds; top speed of 175 mph and stopping power from 60-0 mph in 120 feet. The starting U.S. MSRP for the 2013 Dodge Charger SRT8 Super Bee is $41,995 (plus $995 destination). All 2013 Dodge Challenger SRT8, Chrysler 300 SRT8 and Dodge Charger SRT8 Super Bee models are built at the Brampton Assembly plant in Brampton, Ontario, Canada. View full article
  3. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 9, 2013 Last year, SRT introduced the special edition Charger SRT8 Super Bee which dropped many of the luxury features found in the Charger SRT8, with a lower pricetag. The Super Bee model must have been a success since SRT is keeping the Charger Super Bee for 2013 and introducing two new models with this ideal. Called Core, this trim level offered on the 2013 Chrysler 300 SRT8 and Dodge Challenger SRT8 392 offers the same levels of performance, but at lower cost. First up is the 2013 Chrysler 300 SRT8 Core. It loses the adaptive suspension, leather seats, navigation, and other features. What it does retain is the large 8.4-inch touchscreen and the option of red-painted calipers. The pricetag? $44,990 (includes $995 destination charge), which is $4,000 less than the regular 300C SRT8. Next is the Dodge Challenger SRT8 392 Core which loses out on adaptive suspension, adaptive exhaust, fog lights, high-power stereo, high-intensity-discharge headlights,forged twenty-inch wheels, and leather seats. Instead the Core model goes with cloth seats, cast aluminum wheels, and 392 decals. How much? $39,990 with six-speed manual transmission (includes $995 destination charge), which is $4,780 less than a standard Challenger SRT8 392. The 300 SRT8 and Challenger SRT8 392 Core arrive at dealers this summer. Source: Chrysler William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 SRT Brand Adds New 'Core' Performance Models to 2013 Vehicle Lineup -New models of Dodge Challenger SRT8 and Chrysler 300 SRT8 offer a back-to-basics performance recipe for the enthusiast customers who crave the core power, handling and capability features of their cars -Newly added and historically significant exterior colors HEMI® Orange Pearl Coat, TorRed Clear Coat and Plum Crazy Pearl Coat make return on existing Challenger SRT8 models and Dodge Charger SRT8 models -New 300 SRT8 "Core" model is available in eight exterior colors -New models expected to arrive in dealer showrooms this summer February 7, 2013 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - Chrysler Group LLC's SRT (Street and Racing Technology) brand is expanding its "Core SRT" vehicle strategy from the successful Charger SRT8 Super Bee and SRT Viper by offering new 2013 "Core" models of the Dodge Challenger SRT8 and Chrysler 300 SRT8. "With exclusive content, including the standard premium 'Ballistic' cloth interior from the new SRT Viper, SRT-tuned sport suspensions and distinctive exterior accents, the new Challenger SRT8 and 300 SRT8 'Core' models are designed and built with the back-to-basics performance driving enthusiast in mind," said Ralph Gilles, President and CEO - SRT Brand and Motorsports, Chrysler Group LLC. New 2013 Dodge Challenger SRT8 "Core" Model On the exterior, the new 2013 Challenger SRT8 "Core" model features a black grille and black SRT rear spoiler, unique black 392 decal on the front fenders, 20-inch cast-aluminum wheels with black painted pockets and black Brembo brake calipers. New exterior colors for the Challenger SRT8 "Core" lineup include HEMI® Orange Pearl Coat and Plum Crazy Pearl Coat, in addition to the existing color options, which include Billet Silver Metallic Clear Coat, Bright White Clear Coat, Granite Crystal Metallic Pearl Coat, Jazz Blue Pearl Coat, Pitch Black and TorRed Clear Coat. Phantom Black Tri-coat Pearl and Redline Tri-coat Pearl are exclusive to the 2013 Challenger SRT8 392 models. On the inside of the new "Core" model, seating surfaces use the same premium "Ballistic" cloth inserts from the SRT Viper and are flanked by dark slate gray "Axel" cloth bolsters and door bolster inserts and feature a mini-carbon bezel instrument panel. All 2013 Challenger SRT8 models are powered by the proven 392-cubic inch (6.4-liter) HEMI V-8 that delivers 470 horsepower (351 kW) and 470 lb.-ft. (637 N•m) of torque. The torque band is extremely flat allowing for strong standing starts and improved straight-line performance throughout the rpm range. An advanced active intake manifold along with high-lift cam with phasing provides maximum low-end torque and high-end power while still delivering 23 miles per gallon on the highway with the standard manual transmission or available automatic transmission. Performance-tuned engine mounts improve idle stability and ride control at all speeds. All 2013 Challenger SRT8 models accelerate from 0-60 mph in the high 4-second range; run the quarter mile in mid-12-second range with the automatic transmission (high 12-second range with the manual); go from 0-100-0 mph in the low 15s, reach a top speed of 182 mph with the manual transmission (175 mph with the automatic) and stop from 60-0 mph in just 117 feet. The starting U.S. Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) for the new 2013 Dodge Challenger SRT8 "Core" model is $38,995 (plus $995 destination). New 2013 Chrysler 300 SRT8 "Core" Model The new 2013 Chrysler 300 SRT8 "Core" model features a 6.4L badge on the front fenders – a first for the 300 SRT8 – 20-inch cast-aluminum wheels with black painted pockets and standard black Brembo brake calipers (also available in red). On the inside of the new "Core" model, black seating surfaces use the same premium "Ballistic" cloth inserts from the SRT Viper and are flanked by black "Axel" cloth bolsters and door bolster inserts. Various matte carbon and piano black accents surround the instrument panel, door bezels and center console. Under the hood of every Chrysler 300 SRT8 model is the 6.4-liter HEMI V-8 delivering 470 horsepower (351 kW) and 470 lb.-ft. (637 N•m) of torque. On the highway, up to 23 mpg is achieved by use of an active valve exhaust system that allows the standard Fuel Saver Technology (four-cylinder mode) to engage over a wide rpm range. The active exhaust system also allows for straight-through mid and rear mufflers for a throaty exhaust note under engine load. Performance numbers include 0-60 mph acceleration in the high 4-second range; quarter mile in high 12-second range; 0-100-0 mph in less than 16 seconds, top speed of 175 mph and stopping power from 60-0 mph in 120 feet. Eight exterior colors are available throughout the 2013 Chrysler 300 SRT8 lineup, including Billet Silver Metallic Clear Coat, Bright White Clear Coat, Deep Cherry Red Pearl Coat, Gloss Black Clear Coat, Granite Crystal Pearl Coat, Ivory Pearl Tri-coat, Jazz Blue Pearl Coat and Phantom Black Tri-coat Pearl. The starting U.S. MSRP for the new 2013 Chrysler 300 SRT8 "Core" model is $43,995 (plus $995 destination). 2013 Dodge Charger SRT8 Super Bee The 2013 Dodge Charger SRT8 Super Bee features a unique SRT badge with a 3-D helmeted bee mascot on the new split crosshair grille finished in Gloss Black. Both front fenders tout the historically significant V-8 engine with "392 HEMI" badges first seen on the 2011 Dodge Challenger SRT8 392. Flanking both rear fenders are the legendary round Super Bee graphics, which now include the wording "Powered by SRT" to commemorate the modern incarnation of this celebrated performance icon. Returning from the 2012 model are the five-spoke cast-aluminum 20-inch wheels with black painted pockets and black Brembo brake calipers that provide a unique performance look. New exterior colors now available on the 2013 Charger SRT8 Super Bee include the historically significant HEMI® Orange Pearl Coat and Plum Crazy Pearl Coat. The Charger SRT8 Super Bee is also available in Bright White Clear Coat, Pitch Black Clear Coat and TorRed Clear Coat. The Dodge Charger SRT8 Super Bee is powered by the same 6.4-liter HEMI V-8 that delivers 470 horsepower (351 kW) and 470 (637 N•m) lb.-ft. of torque. On the highway, up to 23 mpg is achieved by use of an active valve exhaust system that allows the standard Fuel Saver Technology (four-cylinder mode) to engage over a wide rpm range. The active exhaust system also allows for straight-through mid and rear mufflers for a throaty exhaust note under engine load. Performance numbers include 0-60 mph acceleration in the high 4-second range; quarter mile in the high 12-second range; 0-100-0 mph in less than 16 seconds; top speed of 175 mph and stopping power from 60-0 mph in 120 feet. The starting U.S. MSRP for the 2013 Dodge Charger SRT8 Super Bee is $41,995 (plus $995 destination). All 2013 Dodge Challenger SRT8, Chrysler 300 SRT8 and Dodge Charger SRT8 Super Bee models are built at the Brampton Assembly plant in Brampton, Ontario, Canada.
  4. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 7, 2013 The 2012 L.A. Auto Show brought forth the new 2014 Kia Forte sedan. At the the 2013 Chicago Auto Show, Kia introduced the 2014 Kia Forte 5-Door. The 5-Door comes with some different styling changes (besides the hatchback shape) which include a smaller tiger-nose grille, larger lower intake, LED taillights, and dual exhaust outlets. Inside, the Forte 5-Door gets the same standard features of the Forte sedan such as Kia's UVO infotainment system with rear camera display, Bluetooth, satellite radio, leather-wrapped steering wheel and gear shifter. Under the hood of the Forte 5-Door comes, the base EX model uses a 2.0L direct-injected four, producing 173 horsepower and 154 pound-feet of torque. The SX model uses a 1.6L turbocharged engine 201 horsepower and 195 pound-feet. The 1.6L can equipped with a six-speed manual or automatic. While the 2014 Forte sedan arrives at Kia dealers later this month, the 5-Door version arrives later this summer. Source: Kia Album: 2014 Kia Forte 5-Door 8 images 0 comments William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 KIA MOTORS AMERICA UNVEILS ALL-NEW FORTE 5-DOOR AT 2013 CHICAGO AUTO SHOW 201-HP Turbocharged Four-Cylinder Engine is First for Forte 5-Door SX Lower, longer and wider, the all-new Forte 5-door combines European style with the practicality of a hatchback Forte 5-door is expected to go on sale in the third quarter of 2013 CHICAGO, Feb. 7, 2013 – Kia Motors America (KMA) ignited the 2013 Chicago Auto Show when the all-new, ultra-hot Forte 5-door rolled on-stage today. The all-new Forte 5-door SX’s eye-catching European-inspired hatchback design is complimented by an all-new 1.6-liter gasoline direct-injected (GDI) turbocharged four-cylinder engine putting out 201 horsepower and 195 lb.-ft. of torque, making the all-new Forte 5-door SX the most powerful Forte from KMA to date. The Forte 5-door is expected to go on sale in the third quarter of 2013, and pricing will be announced closer to launch. “We received very positive feedback after the all-new Forte sedan made its debut at the 2012 Los Angeles Auto Show, and we expect the all-new Forte 5-door will build upon that success,” said Michael Sprague, executive vice president of marketing & communications, KMA. “The combination of a useful hatchback for carrying cargo and the sportiness of the turbocharged SX trim make the all-new Forte 5-door a dual threat in the segment.” Presented in two trim levels, EX and SX, with two distinct engine choices, the Forte 5-door will offer customers Kia’s long list of premium amenities and features not normally found in the compact segment. Under the hood, the Forte 5-door packs a punch, with the EX’s 2.0-liter GDI four-cylinder engine putting out a healthy 173 horsepower and 154 lb.-ft. of torque through a 6-speed automatic transmission. The performance-oriented SX comes standard with the hard-charging 1.6-liter turbo four-cylinder, a first for the Forte line. The SX also offers buyers the chance to pick their own gears with a standard 6-speed manual transmission, or they may opt for the 6-speed automatic featuring steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters. Standard Features and Technology Take Value to New Levels of Sophistication Carrying on Kia’s reputation of offering tremendous value, the all-new Forte 5-door offers buyers an impressive allotment of technology and safety features. The base EX comes standard with 16-inch alloy wheels, UVO eServices with rear camera display1, Bluetooth®2 wireless technology, SiriusXM™ Satellite Radio3, leather-wrapped steering wheel with integrated audio and cruise control buttons, FlexSteer™, tilt and telescoping steering column, power windows, and LED positioning headlights with fog lights. The SX trim ups the ante with standard 18-inch alloy wheels, dual chrome exhaust tips, and LED tail lights. Forte 5-door SX also offers an aggressive front fascia with larger bumper and grille openings, black gloss grille inserts, larger front brakes, alloy sport pedals, front and rear seats with carbon fiber-style accents. The lower front fascia and rear valance also feature carbon fiber-look trim pieces. Additionally, both EX and SX trim levels offer optional HID headlights, navigation system with HD Radio™4, sunroof, heated steering wheel,10-way adjustable power driver’s seat, heated front seats and cooled driver’s seat, heated rear outboard seats, leather seating surfaces, SmartKey with push-button start, electric chromatic rearview mirror and dual-zone automatic climate control. Stunning European Design Language Born from the Kia design studio in Seoul and overseen by Kia’s global chief of design, Peter Schreyer, the Forte 5-door’s sophisticated hatchback profile, large wheels and aggressive posture give it a distinctly European appearance that speaks to its performance intentions. The chiseled body commands attention and continues Kia’s tradition as a design leader in the industry. Like its Forte sedan counterpart, the Forte 5-door’s swept headlights stretch deep into the front fenders and the raked windshield and broad shoulders give the front end a sleek, sporty appearance. LED positioning lights add a premium look to the front fascia. Moving around the vehicle, the large 18-inch wheels fill the wheel wells on the SX, and the hatchback profile affords a performance-oriented European personality. Around back, the rear hatch glass opens to reveal 23.2 cubic feet of usable cargo space. LED tail lights complete the premium feel of the exterior and a sporty rear valance with twin chrome exhaust tips maintains the Forte 5-door’s edgy demeanor. Sporty Cabin with Premium Features Inside, the Forte 5-door features premium materials and soft touch points. Large, easy-to-read white-on-black gauges nestle deeply into the instrument cluster. Chrome accents around the HVAC controls and optional push-button start, along with carbon fiber-like textures on the dash and seats, add a sporty touch. A grippy leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob are further evidence of the Forte 5-door’s performance aspirations. Class-exclusive available features such as front and rear heated outboard seats, an air-cooled driver’s seat and driver-selectable electric steering further set the Forte 5-door apart from its competition. Thrilling Driving Experience The Forte 5-door SX is the most powerful Forte built by Kia to date, utilizing a 1.6-liter GDI turbocharged four-cylinder that help improve performance. Power is seamlessly transferred to the front wheels via a six-speed manual or automatic transmission. The GDI powerplant produces 201 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 195 lb.-ft. of torque between 1,750-4,500 rpm. The advanced powertrain features double overhead cams with dual continuously variable valve timing to help improve efficiency and performance. The Forte 5-door EX comes standard with a 2.0-liter GDI powerplant producing 173 horsepower at 6,500 rpm and 154 lb.-ft. of torque at 4,700 rpm. During durability testing, the engines are run 300 continuous hours at redline under full load then for an additional 20 hours at 10 percent above redline under full load. To help further improve performance, the Forte 5-door features a sport-tuned suspension with a McPherson strut setup in front and a multilink rear design. The Forte 5-door rides on standard 205/55R-16 tires while 225/40R-18 tires are included with the SX trim for an even more sporting driving experience.
  5. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 7, 2013 The 2012 L.A. Auto Show brought forth the new 2014 Kia Forte sedan. At the the 2013 Chicago Auto Show, Kia introduced the 2014 Kia Forte 5-Door. The 5-Door comes with some different styling changes (besides the hatchback shape) which include a smaller tiger-nose grille, larger lower intake, LED taillights, and dual exhaust outlets. Inside, the Forte 5-Door gets the same standard features of the Forte sedan such as Kia's UVO infotainment system with rear camera display, Bluetooth, satellite radio, leather-wrapped steering wheel and gear shifter. Under the hood of the Forte 5-Door comes, the base EX model uses a 2.0L direct-injected four, producing 173 horsepower and 154 pound-feet of torque. The SX model uses a 1.6L turbocharged engine 201 horsepower and 195 pound-feet. The 1.6L can equipped with a six-speed manual or automatic. While the 2014 Forte sedan arrives at Kia dealers later this month, the 5-Door version arrives later this summer. Source: Kia Album: 2014 Kia Forte 5-Door 8 images 0 comments William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 KIA MOTORS AMERICA UNVEILS ALL-NEW FORTE 5-DOOR AT 2013 CHICAGO AUTO SHOW 201-HP Turbocharged Four-Cylinder Engine is First for Forte 5-Door SX Lower, longer and wider, the all-new Forte 5-door combines European style with the practicality of a hatchback Forte 5-door is expected to go on sale in the third quarter of 2013 CHICAGO, Feb. 7, 2013 – Kia Motors America (KMA) ignited the 2013 Chicago Auto Show when the all-new, ultra-hot Forte 5-door rolled on-stage today. The all-new Forte 5-door SX’s eye-catching European-inspired hatchback design is complimented by an all-new 1.6-liter gasoline direct-injected (GDI) turbocharged four-cylinder engine putting out 201 horsepower and 195 lb.-ft. of torque, making the all-new Forte 5-door SX the most powerful Forte from KMA to date. The Forte 5-door is expected to go on sale in the third quarter of 2013, and pricing will be announced closer to launch. “We received very positive feedback after the all-new Forte sedan made its debut at the 2012 Los Angeles Auto Show, and we expect the all-new Forte 5-door will build upon that success,” said Michael Sprague, executive vice president of marketing & communications, KMA. “The combination of a useful hatchback for carrying cargo and the sportiness of the turbocharged SX trim make the all-new Forte 5-door a dual threat in the segment.” Presented in two trim levels, EX and SX, with two distinct engine choices, the Forte 5-door will offer customers Kia’s long list of premium amenities and features not normally found in the compact segment. Under the hood, the Forte 5-door packs a punch, with the EX’s 2.0-liter GDI four-cylinder engine putting out a healthy 173 horsepower and 154 lb.-ft. of torque through a 6-speed automatic transmission. The performance-oriented SX comes standard with the hard-charging 1.6-liter turbo four-cylinder, a first for the Forte line. The SX also offers buyers the chance to pick their own gears with a standard 6-speed manual transmission, or they may opt for the 6-speed automatic featuring steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters. Standard Features and Technology Take Value to New Levels of Sophistication Carrying on Kia’s reputation of offering tremendous value, the all-new Forte 5-door offers buyers an impressive allotment of technology and safety features. The base EX comes standard with 16-inch alloy wheels, UVO eServices with rear camera display1, Bluetooth®2 wireless technology, SiriusXM™ Satellite Radio3, leather-wrapped steering wheel with integrated audio and cruise control buttons, FlexSteer™, tilt and telescoping steering column, power windows, and LED positioning headlights with fog lights. The SX trim ups the ante with standard 18-inch alloy wheels, dual chrome exhaust tips, and LED tail lights. Forte 5-door SX also offers an aggressive front fascia with larger bumper and grille openings, black gloss grille inserts, larger front brakes, alloy sport pedals, front and rear seats with carbon fiber-style accents. The lower front fascia and rear valance also feature carbon fiber-look trim pieces. Additionally, both EX and SX trim levels offer optional HID headlights, navigation system with HD Radio™4, sunroof, heated steering wheel,10-way adjustable power driver’s seat, heated front seats and cooled driver’s seat, heated rear outboard seats, leather seating surfaces, SmartKey with push-button start, electric chromatic rearview mirror and dual-zone automatic climate control. Stunning European Design Language Born from the Kia design studio in Seoul and overseen by Kia’s global chief of design, Peter Schreyer, the Forte 5-door’s sophisticated hatchback profile, large wheels and aggressive posture give it a distinctly European appearance that speaks to its performance intentions. The chiseled body commands attention and continues Kia’s tradition as a design leader in the industry. Like its Forte sedan counterpart, the Forte 5-door’s swept headlights stretch deep into the front fenders and the raked windshield and broad shoulders give the front end a sleek, sporty appearance. LED positioning lights add a premium look to the front fascia. Moving around the vehicle, the large 18-inch wheels fill the wheel wells on the SX, and the hatchback profile affords a performance-oriented European personality. Around back, the rear hatch glass opens to reveal 23.2 cubic feet of usable cargo space. LED tail lights complete the premium feel of the exterior and a sporty rear valance with twin chrome exhaust tips maintains the Forte 5-door’s edgy demeanor. Sporty Cabin with Premium Features Inside, the Forte 5-door features premium materials and soft touch points. Large, easy-to-read white-on-black gauges nestle deeply into the instrument cluster. Chrome accents around the HVAC controls and optional push-button start, along with carbon fiber-like textures on the dash and seats, add a sporty touch. A grippy leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob are further evidence of the Forte 5-door’s performance aspirations. Class-exclusive available features such as front and rear heated outboard seats, an air-cooled driver’s seat and driver-selectable electric steering further set the Forte 5-door apart from its competition. Thrilling Driving Experience The Forte 5-door SX is the most powerful Forte built by Kia to date, utilizing a 1.6-liter GDI turbocharged four-cylinder that help improve performance. Power is seamlessly transferred to the front wheels via a six-speed manual or automatic transmission. The GDI powerplant produces 201 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 195 lb.-ft. of torque between 1,750-4,500 rpm. The advanced powertrain features double overhead cams with dual continuously variable valve timing to help improve efficiency and performance. The Forte 5-door EX comes standard with a 2.0-liter GDI powerplant producing 173 horsepower at 6,500 rpm and 154 lb.-ft. of torque at 4,700 rpm. During durability testing, the engines are run 300 continuous hours at redline under full load then for an additional 20 hours at 10 percent above redline under full load. To help further improve performance, the Forte 5-door features a sport-tuned suspension with a McPherson strut setup in front and a multilink rear design. The Forte 5-door rides on standard 205/55R-16 tires while 225/40R-18 tires are included with the SX trim for an even more sporting driving experience. View full article
  6. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 8, 2013 Forty years ago, Volkwagen introduced a very special edition of the Beetle called the GSR. Short for Gelb-Schwarzer Renner (Yellow Black Racer in english), the model was designed to take the Beetle racing. At the 2013 Chicago Auto Show, Volkswagen announced they will be bringing back the GSR to the Beetle. The Beetle GSR comes with a very wild yellow paint job with black stripes. Also included for the exterior is a large rear spoiler and nineteen-inch wheels shod with 235/40 tires. Pop the hood of the Beetle GSR and you're looking at Volkswagen's venerable 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder. In the GSR, the 2.0L produces 210 horspower and 207 pound-feet of torque. That's paired with either a a six-speed manual or DSG transmission. Volkswagen says there will be only 3,500 Beetle GSRs built for the U.S. and will arrive this fall. Album: 2014 Volkswagen Beetle GSR 6 images 0 comments Source: Volkswagen William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 VOLKSWAGEN UNVEILS THE LIMITED-EDITION BEETLE GSR AT THE CHICAGO AUTO SHOW - Classic 1970s' Beetle serves as inspiration for the GSRTM - Sportiest Beetle boasts a 210 horsepower turbocharged engine - On sale in the Fall as a 2014 model - Limited edition of just 3500 worldwide - Leather-trimmed sport seats and unique GSR trim mark out the interior Wolfsburg / Chicago, February 7, 2013 - Forty years ago, the sportiest version of the classic Volkswagen Beetle made its debut. Called the GSR (Gelb Schwarzer Renner or "Yellow Black Racer"), the vehicle was based on a 1303S and was instantly recognizable by its color scheme. Just 3500 units were built and they are now collectors' items. Today, at the Chicago Auto Show, Volkswagen of America, Inc. pays homage to that 1970s' model with the world unveiling of the 2014 Beetle GSR. Striking in yellow and black, just like its predecessor, the GSR also debuts an uprated version of the award-winning EA888 2.0-liter turbocharged inline four-cylinder TSI® engine that generates 210 horsepower. This engine will be fitted to the Jetta GLI and Beetle Turbo during the 2013 model year, boosting their power by 10 hp. With this new car, Volkswagen has re-interpreted the 1970s GSR for the modern era. The bodyshell of the 1973 Beetle was painted yellow, while the hood, trunklid, and bumpers were finished in matte black. The look was rounded out by black trim strips underneath the side windows and black rocker panels. Yellow and black link old and new: the body and the R- Line® bumpers on the new GSR are predominantly yellow, the hood is mainly black, and the trunklid, roof, and the exterior mirror caps are all black. The new car has yellow/black stripes with "GSR" lettering above the side skirts and a large rear spoiler to complete the look. The stance of the new car is very different, as it rides on 19-inch "Tornado" aluminum-alloy wheels shod with 235/40 tires, compared with the original GSR's 15-inch steel wheels and 175- section tires, which were quite common even on sporty cars back then. The new GSR also features black-painted brake calipers. Then as now, the GSR features a unique interior with a yellow/black theme, sport seats, and a leather sport steering wheel. The new GSR is a lot more sophisticated, however. The black- trimmed leather sport seats and high-grip leather steering wheel both have contrasting yellow stitching, for example. Other interior changes include an R-Line dash pad, a GSR shift lever, a leather handbrake lever, and black floormats with contrasting yellow embroidery. A badge on the steering wheel is marked with the special-edition number (1 through 3500) to emphasize the uniqueness of the car. Forty years ago, the Beetle GSR had all of 50 horsepower, enough to give it the requisite performance for a sporty compact of the time. But the modern world demands much more under the hood. The new GSR's 210 horsepower and 207 pound-feet of torque enable the car to accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in just 6.6 seconds and to reach an electronically governed top track speed of 130 mph. Most impressively, the engine delivers peak torque from as low as 1700 rpm, giving smooth, effortless acceleration in all the gears. The GSR is standard with a six-speed manual transmission, but a dual-clutch DSG® six-speed automatic transmission will be an option. Just like its predecessor, only 3500 GSR models will be made-and more than half of those will be sold in the U.S. Since the GSR is based on the Beetle Turbo with Sunroof and Sound model, it comes comprehensively equipped with the Fender® Premium Audio System; a panoramic sunroof; Keyless access with push-button start; Bi-Xenon headlights with LED DRLs; LED license-plate lighting; heatable front seats; Bluetooth® connectivity; a Media Device Interface (MDI) with iPod® cable; three-color ambient lighting; aluminum-alloy pedals; and three auxiliary instruments that include a clock with a stopwatch function and a boost gauge. The Volkswagen Beetle GSR will go on sale in the fall as a 2014 model; pricing will be announced closer to launch. View full article
  7. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 8, 2013 Forty years ago, Volkwagen introduced a very special edition of the Beetle called the GSR. Short for Gelb-Schwarzer Renner (Yellow Black Racer in english), the model was designed to take the Beetle racing. At the 2013 Chicago Auto Show, Volkswagen announced they will be bringing back the GSR to the Beetle. The Beetle GSR comes with a very wild yellow paint job with black stripes. Also included for the exterior is a large rear spoiler and nineteen-inch wheels shod with 235/40 tires. Pop the hood of the Beetle GSR and you're looking at Volkswagen's venerable 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder. In the GSR, the 2.0L produces 210 horspower and 207 pound-feet of torque. That's paired with either a a six-speed manual or DSG transmission. Volkswagen says there will be only 3,500 Beetle GSRs built for the U.S. and will arrive this fall. Album: 2014 Volkswagen Beetle GSR 6 images 0 comments Source: Volkswagen William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 VOLKSWAGEN UNVEILS THE LIMITED-EDITION BEETLE GSR AT THE CHICAGO AUTO SHOW - Classic 1970s' Beetle serves as inspiration for the GSRTM - Sportiest Beetle boasts a 210 horsepower turbocharged engine - On sale in the Fall as a 2014 model - Limited edition of just 3500 worldwide - Leather-trimmed sport seats and unique GSR trim mark out the interior Wolfsburg / Chicago, February 7, 2013 - Forty years ago, the sportiest version of the classic Volkswagen Beetle made its debut. Called the GSR (Gelb Schwarzer Renner or "Yellow Black Racer"), the vehicle was based on a 1303S and was instantly recognizable by its color scheme. Just 3500 units were built and they are now collectors' items. Today, at the Chicago Auto Show, Volkswagen of America, Inc. pays homage to that 1970s' model with the world unveiling of the 2014 Beetle GSR. Striking in yellow and black, just like its predecessor, the GSR also debuts an uprated version of the award-winning EA888 2.0-liter turbocharged inline four-cylinder TSI® engine that generates 210 horsepower. This engine will be fitted to the Jetta GLI and Beetle Turbo during the 2013 model year, boosting their power by 10 hp. With this new car, Volkswagen has re-interpreted the 1970s GSR for the modern era. The bodyshell of the 1973 Beetle was painted yellow, while the hood, trunklid, and bumpers were finished in matte black. The look was rounded out by black trim strips underneath the side windows and black rocker panels. Yellow and black link old and new: the body and the R- Line® bumpers on the new GSR are predominantly yellow, the hood is mainly black, and the trunklid, roof, and the exterior mirror caps are all black. The new car has yellow/black stripes with "GSR" lettering above the side skirts and a large rear spoiler to complete the look. The stance of the new car is very different, as it rides on 19-inch "Tornado" aluminum-alloy wheels shod with 235/40 tires, compared with the original GSR's 15-inch steel wheels and 175- section tires, which were quite common even on sporty cars back then. The new GSR also features black-painted brake calipers. Then as now, the GSR features a unique interior with a yellow/black theme, sport seats, and a leather sport steering wheel. The new GSR is a lot more sophisticated, however. The black- trimmed leather sport seats and high-grip leather steering wheel both have contrasting yellow stitching, for example. Other interior changes include an R-Line dash pad, a GSR shift lever, a leather handbrake lever, and black floormats with contrasting yellow embroidery. A badge on the steering wheel is marked with the special-edition number (1 through 3500) to emphasize the uniqueness of the car. Forty years ago, the Beetle GSR had all of 50 horsepower, enough to give it the requisite performance for a sporty compact of the time. But the modern world demands much more under the hood. The new GSR's 210 horsepower and 207 pound-feet of torque enable the car to accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in just 6.6 seconds and to reach an electronically governed top track speed of 130 mph. Most impressively, the engine delivers peak torque from as low as 1700 rpm, giving smooth, effortless acceleration in all the gears. The GSR is standard with a six-speed manual transmission, but a dual-clutch DSG® six-speed automatic transmission will be an option. Just like its predecessor, only 3500 GSR models will be made-and more than half of those will be sold in the U.S. Since the GSR is based on the Beetle Turbo with Sunroof and Sound model, it comes comprehensively equipped with the Fender® Premium Audio System; a panoramic sunroof; Keyless access with push-button start; Bi-Xenon headlights with LED DRLs; LED license-plate lighting; heatable front seats; Bluetooth® connectivity; a Media Device Interface (MDI) with iPod® cable; three-color ambient lighting; aluminum-alloy pedals; and three auxiliary instruments that include a clock with a stopwatch function and a boost gauge. The Volkswagen Beetle GSR will go on sale in the fall as a 2014 model; pricing will be announced closer to launch.
  8. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 7, 2013 Looking for coverage about the vehicle appearing at the Chicago Auto Show? Look no further. Cheers & Gears will be providing coverage of the 2013 Chicago Auto Show. 2014 Chevrolet Cruze Diesel 2013 Dodge Challenger R/T Redline Ford Fiesta ST Global RallyCross Car and Focus TrackSTer Kia Cross GT Concept 2014 Kia Forte 5-Door Mopar 13' Dart Nissan's Peformance Trio: 2013 Juke NISMO, 2014 370Z NISMO, 2014 GT-R Track Edition 2013 Nissan NV200 Compact Cargo Van 2014 Ram ProMaster 2014 Toyota Tundra 2014 Volkswagen Beetle GSR 2013 Volkswagen GTI Special Editions and Beetle R-Line Convertible William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
  9. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 7, 2013 Looking for coverage about the vehicle appearing at the Chicago Auto Show? Look no further. Cheers & Gears will be providing coverage of the 2013 Chicago Auto Show. 2014 Chevrolet Cruze Diesel 2013 Dodge Challenger R/T Redline Ford Fiesta ST Global RallyCross Car and Focus TrackSTer Kia Cross GT Concept 2014 Kia Forte 5-Door Mopar 13' Dart Nissan's Peformance Trio: 2013 Juke NISMO, 2014 370Z NISMO, 2014 GT-R Track Edition 2013 Nissan NV200 Compact Cargo Van 2014 Ram ProMaster 2014 Toyota Tundra 2014 Volkswagen Beetle GSR 2013 Volkswagen GTI Special Editions and Beetle R-Line Convertible William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. View full article
  10. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 8, 2013 At one time in the U.S. auto market, you had a wide variety of compact pickups to choose from. You could get a Chevrolet S-10, Ford Ranger, Nissan Hardbody, or a number of other pickups. But now there isn’t such a thing as a compact pickup. The last compact pickup truck, the Ford Ranger, said farewell in 2011. Other compact pickups have grown into what we now call the midsize class. That brings us to the current crop of midsize pickups; the Nissan Frontier and Toyota Tacoma. These two models make up the current selection of midsize pickups. But is that a good thing? Why are there only two models in the midsize pickups class? I recently had a 2013 Toyota Tacoma Access Cab to find out. Variety is the Spice of Life The 2013 Tacoma comes in a variety of configurations to suit your needs. Whether you need a single cab with a four-cylinder engine or a crew cab with a V6 and off-road package, Toyota probably has a Tacoma for you. Our test Tacoma was a SR5 Access Cab, Toyota’s name for extended cab. Toyota has made some tweaks the Tacoma’s exterior in 2012, mostly in the front. There is a new grille, headlights, and bumper that help make the Tacoma’s 2005 design look somewhat newer. The Tacoma’s standard truck bed measures out at 73.5 inches long, which means the truck can handle a run to the hardware store to pick up supplies with no problem. Stepping inside the Tacoma Access Cab, you do notice that it hasn’t aged very well. Despite Toyota’s best efforts to spruce it up by installing a new steering wheel, revising the graphics on the gauges, and changing the colors on the center stack, the interior feels like it has just rolled off the assembly line back in 2005. Materials are what you would usually find in most mid-size trucks, hard plastics in the usual places. However, the Tacoma’s interior does have some positive points. For starters, the dash layout is simple and the controls are within easy reach. The front seats are very comfortable with a good amount of adjustments and bolstering. Then there is the Access Cab which increases interior space and provides additional space. You can fit two people in the back in the jump seats, but only if they are small kids. Power? Yes. Fuel Economy and Ride? Umm.. The Tacoma can be equipped with either a 2.7L four-cylinder or what our test Tacoma was equipped with, a 4.0L V6. I should explain Toyota uses two variations of the 4.0L in their Trucks and SUVs. For the Tundra and 4Runner, Toyota employs a 4.0L producing 270 horsepower and 278 pound-feet of torque. In the Tacoma, Toyota uses the same 4.0L producing less power at 236 horsepower and 266 pound-feet torque. Transmission choices for the Tacoma include a six-speed manual or five-speed automatic. The 4.0L V6 feels faster than what is indicated on the speedometer thanks to the bulk of torque being on the low-end and the automatic’s gearing spaced out to provide more performance. With an empty bed and dry payment, you can easily get a squeal from the rear tires. On the expressway, the V6 was able get up to speed very quickly and make passes with no sweat. I never thought that I needed the higher performing 4.0L in the week I had the Tacoma. One item Toyota does need to address with the Tacoma’s 4.0L V6 is fuel economy. The EPA rates the 2013 Toyota Tacoma Access Cab SR5 V6 4WD at 16 City/21 Highway/18 Combined, which is similar to full-size pickups equipped V8 engines. During my time with the Tacoma, I averaged about 17.6 MPG. The Tacoma’s suspension uses a double wishbone with gas-filled shocks in the front and leaf springs in the back. This setup provided a soft, yet very bouncy ride. I kept wondering if I was riding a mechanical bull and not a truck. I’m sure if the bed had a load, the bounciness would subside a bit. One surprise of the Tacoma was its steering. Toyota uses a variable assist rack and pinion system and it provided an excellent amount of feel and weight. Combine it with smaller dimensions of the Tacoma and it is a breeze to maneuver around tight spaces. There’s A Good Truck Here, But Needs Some Drastic Changes The 2013 Tacoma Access Cab SR5 V6 has left me torn. On one hand, the Tacoma has a comfortable and straightforward interior layout, a punchy V6, and good maneuverability. On the other hand, the Tacoma gets about the same fuel economy as full-size trucks, an interior that feels very old, and the bouncy ride. There’s another nail in the Tacoma’s coffin and that is the price. As tested, the Tacoma Access Cab SR5 V6 stickers at $30,580.00. At a glance, this seems somewhat reasonable. However with that same amount of cash, you could head down to your local Chevrolet, Ford, Ram dealer and get a full-size truck that is equipped similar to the Tacoma. Toyota is now at a point with the Tacoma where it has two options; either leave the Tacoma as-is or begin making some changes to full unleash the potential of this truck. Those changes include swapping the five-speed automatic for a six-speed automatic and seeing if they can squeeze some more fuel economy out of the 4.0L V6. I hope Toyota goes with the latter option since the midsize truck market could use a kick in the pants. Album: 2013 Toyota Tacoma Access Cab SR5 V6 4WD 18 images 0 comments Disclaimer: Toyota provided the vehicle, insurance, and one tank of gasoline. Year - 2013 Make – Toyota Model – Tacoma Access Cab Trim – SR5 V6 Engine – 4.0L DOHC 24V VVT-i V6 Driveline – Part Time Four-Wheel Drive, Five-Speed Automatic Horsepower @ RPM – 236 @ 5,200 RPM Torque @ RPM – 266 @ 4,000 RPM Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 16/21/18 Curb Weight – 4,100 lbs Location of Manufacture – San Antonio, TX Base Price - $26,185.00 As Tested Price - $30,580.00 (Includes $895.00 destination charge) Options: SR5 Value Package - $2,335.00 V6 Tow Package - $650.00 Running Boards - $376.00 Six-Speaker, AM/FM/SirusXM/CD/MP3/WMA/Bluetooth/Aux/iPod Sound System - $300.00 Floor Mats and Door Sill Protector -$195.00 Exhaust Tip - $85.00 Daytime Running Lights - $40.00 First Aid Kit - $39.00 William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. View full article
  11. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 8, 2013 At one time in the U.S. auto market, you had a wide variety of compact pickups to choose from. You could get a Chevrolet S-10, Ford Ranger, Nissan Hardbody, or a number of other pickups. But now there isn’t such a thing as a compact pickup. The last compact pickup truck, the Ford Ranger, said farewell in 2011. Other compact pickups have grown into what we now call the midsize class. That brings us to the current crop of midsize pickups; the Nissan Frontier and Toyota Tacoma. These two models make up the current selection of midsize pickups. But is that a good thing? Why are there only two models in the midsize pickups class? I recently had a 2013 Toyota Tacoma Access Cab to find out. Variety is the Spice of Life The 2013 Tacoma comes in a variety of configurations to suit your needs. Whether you need a single cab with a four-cylinder engine or a crew cab with a V6 and off-road package, Toyota probably has a Tacoma for you. Our test Tacoma was a SR5 Access Cab, Toyota’s name for extended cab. Toyota has made some tweaks the Tacoma’s exterior in 2012, mostly in the front. There is a new grille, headlights, and bumper that help make the Tacoma’s 2005 design look somewhat newer. The Tacoma’s standard truck bed measures out at 73.5 inches long, which means the truck can handle a run to the hardware store to pick up supplies with no problem. Stepping inside the Tacoma Access Cab, you do notice that it hasn’t aged very well. Despite Toyota’s best efforts to spruce it up by installing a new steering wheel, revising the graphics on the gauges, and changing the colors on the center stack, the interior feels like it has just rolled off the assembly line back in 2005. Materials are what you would usually find in most mid-size trucks, hard plastics in the usual places. However, the Tacoma’s interior does have some positive points. For starters, the dash layout is simple and the controls are within easy reach. The front seats are very comfortable with a good amount of adjustments and bolstering. Then there is the Access Cab which increases interior space and provides additional space. You can fit two people in the back in the jump seats, but only if they are small kids. Power? Yes. Fuel Economy and Ride? Umm.. The Tacoma can be equipped with either a 2.7L four-cylinder or what our test Tacoma was equipped with, a 4.0L V6. I should explain Toyota uses two variations of the 4.0L in their Trucks and SUVs. For the Tundra and 4Runner, Toyota employs a 4.0L producing 270 horsepower and 278 pound-feet of torque. In the Tacoma, Toyota uses the same 4.0L producing less power at 236 horsepower and 266 pound-feet torque. Transmission choices for the Tacoma include a six-speed manual or five-speed automatic. The 4.0L V6 feels faster than what is indicated on the speedometer thanks to the bulk of torque being on the low-end and the automatic’s gearing spaced out to provide more performance. With an empty bed and dry payment, you can easily get a squeal from the rear tires. On the expressway, the V6 was able get up to speed very quickly and make passes with no sweat. I never thought that I needed the higher performing 4.0L in the week I had the Tacoma. One item Toyota does need to address with the Tacoma’s 4.0L V6 is fuel economy. The EPA rates the 2013 Toyota Tacoma Access Cab SR5 V6 4WD at 16 City/21 Highway/18 Combined, which is similar to full-size pickups equipped V8 engines. During my time with the Tacoma, I averaged about 17.6 MPG. The Tacoma’s suspension uses a double wishbone with gas-filled shocks in the front and leaf springs in the back. This setup provided a soft, yet very bouncy ride. I kept wondering if I was riding a mechanical bull and not a truck. I’m sure if the bed had a load, the bounciness would subside a bit. One surprise of the Tacoma was its steering. Toyota uses a variable assist rack and pinion system and it provided an excellent amount of feel and weight. Combine it with smaller dimensions of the Tacoma and it is a breeze to maneuver around tight spaces. There’s A Good Truck Here, But Needs Some Drastic Changes The 2013 Tacoma Access Cab SR5 V6 has left me torn. On one hand, the Tacoma has a comfortable and straightforward interior layout, a punchy V6, and good maneuverability. On the other hand, the Tacoma gets about the same fuel economy as full-size trucks, an interior that feels very old, and the bouncy ride. There’s another nail in the Tacoma’s coffin and that is the price. As tested, the Tacoma Access Cab SR5 V6 stickers at $30,580.00. At a glance, this seems somewhat reasonable. However with that same amount of cash, you could head down to your local Chevrolet, Ford, Ram dealer and get a full-size truck that is equipped similar to the Tacoma. Toyota is now at a point with the Tacoma where it has two options; either leave the Tacoma as-is or begin making some changes to full unleash the potential of this truck. Those changes include swapping the five-speed automatic for a six-speed automatic and seeing if they can squeeze some more fuel economy out of the 4.0L V6. I hope Toyota goes with the latter option since the midsize truck market could use a kick in the pants. Album: 2013 Toyota Tacoma Access Cab SR5 V6 4WD 18 images 0 comments Disclaimer: Toyota provided the vehicle, insurance, and one tank of gasoline. Year - 2013 Make – Toyota Model – Tacoma Access Cab Trim – SR5 V6 Engine – 4.0L DOHC 24V VVT-i V6 Driveline – Part Time Four-Wheel Drive, Five-Speed Automatic Horsepower @ RPM – 236 @ 5,200 RPM Torque @ RPM – 266 @ 4,000 RPM Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 16/21/18 Curb Weight – 4,100 lbs Location of Manufacture – San Antonio, TX Base Price - $26,185.00 As Tested Price - $30,580.00 (Includes $895.00 destination charge) Options: SR5 Value Package - $2,335.00 V6 Tow Package - $650.00 Running Boards - $376.00 Six-Speaker, AM/FM/SirusXM/CD/MP3/WMA/Bluetooth/Aux/iPod Sound System - $300.00 Floor Mats and Door Sill Protector -$195.00 Exhaust Tip - $85.00 Daytime Running Lights - $40.00 First Aid Kit - $39.00 William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
  12. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 8, 2013 The old cargo van guards are being replaced with a new flock of new commercial vehicles from Europe, like the Ford Transit, Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, and now Ram. At the Chicago Auto Show, Ram introduced the new 2014 ProMaster. The ProMaster is the North American version of the Fiat Ducato van which means it has a unibody construction with a front-wheel-drive layout. Not quite the recipe you would expect for a commercial van. Chrysler has made numerous changes to the ProMaster to make it more friendly to the North American market. For starters you have the choice of two different engines. The base is Chrysler's 3.6L Pentastar V6 producing 280 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque that's paired with a six-speed automatic transmission. There is also a 3.0L inline-four EcoDiesel producing 174 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque that's paired with a six-speed electronically controlled automated manual gearbox. Under the skin, the ProMaster has re-engineered chassis, a more robust suspension setup, and two-piston Brembo calipers at each wheel. Ram has made sure to make the ProMaster very versatile. To that end, Ram will be offering the ProMaster two roof heights, three wheelbases and four body lengths. You'll also have the choice between cargo, chassis cab, and cutaway body styles. Other versatility tricks the ProMaster has include hinged rear doors open up 260 degrees, cargo space that measures up to 530 cubic feet, tie down rings built into the floor of the cargo area, and the option of dual sliding side doors. Production of the ProMaster will begin in the third quarter. Source: Ram Album: 2014 Ram ProMaster 10 images 0 comments William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 2014 Ram ProMaster New 2014 Ram ProMaster Expands Ram Commercial Offerings with New Full-size Van Featuring Best-in-class Fuel Economy, Cargo Capacity and Payload • 2014 Ram ProMaster puts Ram Truck back into the expanding, purpose-built, full-size van segment with best-in-class features focused on the commercial customer • New 2014 Ram ProMaster van developed from the successful, long-standing Fiat Ducato: 30-plus years of reliable service and more than 4.5 million units sold • Exceptional cargo capability, durability, a unique front-wheel-drive system and outstanding uptime • Ram ProMaster is a purpose-built, highly customizable van designed to exceed the demands of commercial customers • ProMaster best-in-class features: ♣ Fuel economy ♣ Cargo capacity ♣ Payload ♣ Total cost of ownership ♣ Turning radius ♣ Interior ceiling height ♣ Step-in height • North American debut of world-class, torque-rich 3.0-liter I-4 EcoDiesel promises best-in-class fuel efficiency, robust capability and long service intervals • 280-horsepower output from award-winning 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 unmatched among Ram ProMaster competitors • Proven 62TE six-speed automatic transmission enhanced to suit unique ProMaster application • North American-first automated six-speed manual controlled by software that responds to road conditions • Best-in-class powertrain warranty – 5 years/100,000 miles • New Ram ProMaster combines functionality and versatility with modern styling and professional appeal • Ram ProMaster offers more than 35 safety and security features, including six air bags standard and electronic stability control technologies The new 2014 Ram ProMaster is Ram Commercial's latest addition to its popular commercial vehicle lineup. ProMaster takes its place in the expanding, purpose-built, full-size van segment with a number of best-in-class features focused on the commercial customer. Coming from a strong background of commercial vehicles produced by Fiat Professional, the ProMaster is based on the Fiat Ducato, which has been in production for more than 30 years. ProMaster boasts numerous best-in-class features that are appreciated by the hard-working customers of Ram's new van. Best-in-class fuel efficiency, cargo capacity, usability and of course total cost of ownership all combine to deliver a proven solution for businesses and fleets. "As Ram takes a larger presence in the commercial truck market, the 2014 Ram ProMaster is a great addition, contributing to a one-stop shop of commercial-duty Ram trucks and vans," said Fred Diaz, President and CEO - Ram Truck Brand and Chrysler de Mexico, Chrysler Group LLC. "The ProMaster answers to key segment demands with best-in-class features, quality, durability, capability and low total cost of ownership." Ram Truck is tapping into Fiat Professional, one of the largest producers of commercial vehicles in the entire world, offering more than 110 years of experience. That knowledge will help Ram Truck enter new segments and expand its product line. The new 2014 Ram ProMaster is based on the front-wheel-drive Fiat Ducato, which is the most popular full-size van in Europe. The 2013 Ram ProMaster is the Company's first shared truck collaboration with Fiat Professional. The Fiat Ducato is now in its third generation with more than 4.5 million sold worldwide. The Ducato platform offers Ram a proven, award-winning workhorse with an incredible combination of durability, value, efficiency, and capability like no other in its class. Additionally, the ProMaster is the only offering in its competitive set to provide both a chassis cab and cutaway from the factory. Engineered for the North American market Conceived and developed in Italy, Ram's new van also spent quality time proving itself on this side of the Atlantic undergoing extensive, extreme-duty testing to prepare for its North American debut as the Ram ProMaster. Engineering the new ProMaster for the Ram Truck brand required a number of changes for new capabilities, powertrains, environments, duty cycles and customers. Chassis The 2014 ProMaster is available in two roof heights, three wheelbases, and four body lengths. Additionally, the ProMaster offers both a chassis cab and cutaway from the factory. Its unibody frame architecture makes it significantly lighter than the competition. As a result, the ProMaster boasts an impressive best-in-class payload capacity up to 5,145 pounds and a maximum towing capacity up to 5,100 pounds. The gross combined weight rating (GCWR) for the 3.6-liter V-6 is 11,500 pounds and 12,500 pounds for the 3.0-liter I-4 EcoDiesel. A unibody structural has additional advantages, including stability and strength from front to rear, a reinforced plenum area for optimized engine packaging, and "truer" tuning of chassis systems and related hardware when compared to more common body-on-frame applications. Front-wheel drive The unibody system under the cab is an enabler for the ProMaster's segment exclusive front-wheel-drive system. The body-integral construction and multiple configurations allow Ram's new 2014 ProMaster to be up-fitted for virtually every conceivable job. Without rear driveshafts or rear differentials, the proven drive system creates a number of advantages: • Best-in-class fuel economy • Best-in-class cargo capacity • Best-in-class step-in height and lowest load floor • Best-in-class ceiling height • Overall weight reduction and lower maintenance costs Cargo area Thanks to its unique front-drive system, body-integral construction and the multiple of configurations offered, Ram's new 2014 ProMaster can be upfit for virtually every conceivable commercial need. Proportionally, the ProMaster brings a new standard to the large commercial van-based segment. The ProMaster is available in two roof heights, 90 or 101 inches with best-in-class standard roof height and the most vertically oriented side walls in the cargo van category (nearly 90 degrees in relation to the cargo compartment floor). The ProMaster features a standard sliding door on the passenger side with an optional sliding door on the driver's side. The sliding door openings are based on roof height – 49 inch x 60 inch for the low roof model and 49 inch x 70 inch for high roof models. In the rear, an available two-position rear clamshell door swings open up to 260-degrees, folding almost flat to the side of the van. All three door openings enable fork lift pallet loading and unloading, and spaciousness that leads the competitive set. Upfitter friendliness Ram Truck is well known for being the most upfitter-friendly brand in the truck market. The Ram ProMaster continues the tradition and features an integrated cab configuration for unmatched up-fitter/conversion solutions. Adding to the ProMaster's design for adaptability, virtually all primary vehicle systems are packaged forward of the cargo area. Electronic stability control The standard electronic stability control (ESC) system on the new Ram ProMaster is a sophisticated four-channel (independent control to all four corners of the vehicle) active handling system that links the vehicle's dynamic control systems to assist the driver in maintaining control under demanding or adverse conditions such as wet, snow-covered or icy roads, tight turns, and evasive maneuvers. In effect, the ESC determines the driver's intentions and optimizes overall vehicle control to keep the dynamic forces within select limits in any driving situation – nearly transparent so control seems almost intuitive. Powertrain The 2014 Ram ProMaster van's powertrain lineup features the award-winning standard-equipment, gasoline-fueled V-6 and a torque-laden, I-4 EcoDiesel engine. The engines are paired, respectively, with a proven six-speed automatic transmission and an electronically controlled six-speed automated manual. EcoDiesel The 2014 Ram ProMaster marks the North American introduction of the potent 174-horsepower 3.0-liter inline 4-cylinder EcoDiesel engine that generates peak torque of 295 lb.-ft. at just 1,400 rpm. The engine features a number of refinements, including internal engine components, turbo and emission controls. Helping to reduced total cost of ownership, an oil-level sensor contributes to an oil-change schedule of up to 18,500 miles. Pentastar The standard-equipment 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 is rated at 280 horsepower with peak torque of 260 lb.-ft., the dual overhead cam, 24-valve Pentastar delivers the capability required of a commercial van without compromising refinement – hallmarks that have contributed to its ranking among Ward's 10 Best Engines for three years running. Reducing vehicle operating costs was paramount in the minds of the powertrain engineers who contributed to Ram ProMaster's development. Recommended oil-change intervals range up to 10,000 miles. But an intelligent oil-servicing system that monitors vehicle usage will trigger an alert when service is most appropriate. Transmissions The smooth-shifting 62TE automatic transmission is upgraded to accommodate the Ram ProMaster's prodigious weight ratings. Specifically, its 3.86 final-drive ratio enables comfortable grade transit under full freight. The transmission more readily adopts the most appropriate ratio for a given driving situation. The numerically lower overall top gear ratio delivers a more economical highway operation. The trailer/tow program comes standard with 62TE and the new M40 automated manual, which is not only exclusive to the 3.0-liter EcoDiesel, it stands alone in the Ram ProMaster's competitive set. The unique M40 gearbox delivers the efficiency of a manual transmission with the functionality of an automatic. At its core, it is a manual, but gear shifts and clutch functions are accomplished with electro-hydraulic actuation system. However, the driver can opt for manual shift-lever inputs when desired. But the driver needn't do all the work. Gearbox software delivers a unique response to driving conditions. Shift logic is adjusted according to grade steepness. The result is a well-connected driving experience that delivers the fuel economy required of a commercial van such as the Ram ProMaster. Design The Ram design team started with a functional exterior and interior, adding distinct Ram styling while adapting the new full-size van for North America. Exterior The front of the new ProMaster is identified by visually durable bodylines, a broad wraparound bumper and twin-reflector headlamp clusters. True to the Ram Truck brand, the ProMaster leads with a bold, hexagon-shaped crosshair grille, featuring the Ram's head logo proudly displayed as the focal point of the crosshair. The cab-forward, short dash to front axle design pushes the nose inward and the headlamps upward. This design provides higher passenger seating positions and better visibility – obviously important for commercial users – thanks to a more confident vantage point from which to operate the vehicle. The front bumper is a three-piece styled modular design, resulting in reduced repair costs and downtime. Durable front-wheel arches are styled with the bumper to protect the doors. A unique step is designed into both front bumper corners, making it easy to clean the windscreen from either side. The new full-size van features plenty of real estate on all four sides. This space allows for businesses to post signage and graphics, making the van a rolling billboard to help promote the owner, trade or vocation. Interior The functional and innovative features continue inside the Ram ProMaster. Although much was borrowed from the Fiat version, Ram designers made alterations for U.S. customers. Interior design and function is of primary importance for a light commercial vehicle in which the driver normally spends long hours at the wheel, often under demanding conditions. The cabin of the ProMaster was therefore designed with comfortable driving ergonomics, important because the ProMaster is a place of work. Because goods always need to be transported in total safety, the new Ram ProMaster van is fitted with accommodations to hold down goods on the floor. Up to 17 tie-down rings with 1,000-lb. rating fold away to maintain a flat floor, easing loading and unloading operations. Available partitions also offer passengers excellent protection against the possibility of load shift the cabin. Safety Safety and security were two of the guiding principles followed by engineers throughout the development of the new 2014 Ram ProMaster van. Ram's new full-size van offers more than 35 active and passive safety and security features. The ProMaster also includes standard ESC, hosting a number of technologies such as trailer-sway control. Security also means notification of the traffic around you. Ram ProMaster features ParkView backup camera and ParkSense with audible warning, all of which are useful when maneuvering a large van. Uconnect ProMaster customers can make the best use of their valuable time by leveraging Uconnect's easy-to-learn, easy-to-use interface – acclaimed for its convenience and sensible design. Handsfree calling in the all-new 2014 Ram ProMaster is made convenient via reliable Bluetooth technology. Similarly, the truck's handsfree text-reply feature enables customers to quickly deliver messages. A full-color, five-inch touchscreen is available with global positioning satellite (GPS) navigation, providing Ram ProMaster customers the ability to chart time-saving routes to their destinations. Uconnect Web, powered by Autonet Mobile, is available to U.S. customers. This system delivers continuous Internet connectivity, creating an efficient workspace and real-time information access on the go. Best practices In total, the Ram ProMaster test fleet accumulated millions of miles enabling Ram and Fiat teams access to real-world data. This includes testing done in laboratories in Turin, Italy and Auburn Hills, Mich., at Fiat and Chrysler Group proving grounds, as well as reliability testing on public roads in many different climates in Europe and the United States. The 3/36 Reliability Testing, appropriately named as each test car accumulates 36,000 miles (equivalent to three years of use) in about three months, is conducted day and night by teams of drivers. To reflect typical daily driver scenarios, the test drivers do not originate from the engineering ranks and are intentionally chosen from diverse backgrounds to represent customers of different ages, sizes and ethnicities. The test drivers scrutinize all the customer functional aspects of each vehicle as well as overall driving evaluations. This includes radio and navigation system checks, seat-belt buckling, heating and ventilation operation and opening and closing storage compartments and windows. Configurations The 2014 Ram ProMaster offers 13 different configurations: ProMaster 1500 Cargo Van 118-inch wheelbase low roof ProMaster 1500 Cargo Van 136-inch wheelbase low roof ProMaster 1500 Cargo Van 136-inch wheelbase high roof ProMaster 2500 Cargo Van 136-inch wheelbase high roof ProMaster 2500 Cargo Van 159-inch wheelbase high roof ProMaster 3500 Cargo Van 159-inch wheelbase high roof ProMaster 3500 Cargo Van 159-inch wheelbase high roof extended body ProMaster 3500 Chassis Cab 136-inch wheelbase ProMaster 3500 Chassis Cab 159-inch wheelbase ProMaster 3500 Chassis Cab 159-inch wheelbase extended body ProMaster 3500 Chassis Cab Cutaway 136-inch wheelbase ProMaster 3500 Chassis Cab Cutaway 159-inch wheelbase ProMaster 3500 Chassis Cab Cutaway 159-inch wheelbase extended frame ProMaster competitors are: Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, Ford Transit, Ford Econoline, Chevrolet Express, GMC Savanna and Nissan NV Cargo. Manufacturing Start of production for the 2014 Ram ProMaster is scheduled for third quarter of 2013. All configurations will be produced at the Saltillo Van Assembly Plant in Saltillo, Mexico. View full article
  13. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 8, 2013 The old cargo van guards are being replaced with a new flock of new commercial vehicles from Europe, like the Ford Transit, Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, and now Ram. At the Chicago Auto Show, Ram introduced the new 2014 ProMaster. The ProMaster is the North American version of the Fiat Ducato van which means it has a unibody construction with a front-wheel-drive layout. Not quite the recipe you would expect for a commercial van. Chrysler has made numerous changes to the ProMaster to make it more friendly to the North American market. For starters you have the choice of two different engines. The base is Chrysler's 3.6L Pentastar V6 producing 280 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque that's paired with a six-speed automatic transmission. There is also a 3.0L inline-four EcoDiesel producing 174 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque that's paired with a six-speed electronically controlled automated manual gearbox. Under the skin, the ProMaster has re-engineered chassis, a more robust suspension setup, and two-piston Brembo calipers at each wheel. Ram has made sure to make the ProMaster very versatile. To that end, Ram will be offering the ProMaster two roof heights, three wheelbases and four body lengths. You'll also have the choice between cargo, chassis cab, and cutaway body styles. Other versatility tricks the ProMaster has include hinged rear doors open up 260 degrees, cargo space that measures up to 530 cubic feet, tie down rings built into the floor of the cargo area, and the option of dual sliding side doors. Production of the ProMaster will begin in the third quarter. Source: Ram Album: 2014 Ram ProMaster 10 images 0 comments William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 2014 Ram ProMaster New 2014 Ram ProMaster Expands Ram Commercial Offerings with New Full-size Van Featuring Best-in-class Fuel Economy, Cargo Capacity and Payload • 2014 Ram ProMaster puts Ram Truck back into the expanding, purpose-built, full-size van segment with best-in-class features focused on the commercial customer • New 2014 Ram ProMaster van developed from the successful, long-standing Fiat Ducato: 30-plus years of reliable service and more than 4.5 million units sold • Exceptional cargo capability, durability, a unique front-wheel-drive system and outstanding uptime • Ram ProMaster is a purpose-built, highly customizable van designed to exceed the demands of commercial customers • ProMaster best-in-class features: ♣ Fuel economy ♣ Cargo capacity ♣ Payload ♣ Total cost of ownership ♣ Turning radius ♣ Interior ceiling height ♣ Step-in height • North American debut of world-class, torque-rich 3.0-liter I-4 EcoDiesel promises best-in-class fuel efficiency, robust capability and long service intervals • 280-horsepower output from award-winning 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 unmatched among Ram ProMaster competitors • Proven 62TE six-speed automatic transmission enhanced to suit unique ProMaster application • North American-first automated six-speed manual controlled by software that responds to road conditions • Best-in-class powertrain warranty – 5 years/100,000 miles • New Ram ProMaster combines functionality and versatility with modern styling and professional appeal • Ram ProMaster offers more than 35 safety and security features, including six air bags standard and electronic stability control technologies The new 2014 Ram ProMaster is Ram Commercial's latest addition to its popular commercial vehicle lineup. ProMaster takes its place in the expanding, purpose-built, full-size van segment with a number of best-in-class features focused on the commercial customer. Coming from a strong background of commercial vehicles produced by Fiat Professional, the ProMaster is based on the Fiat Ducato, which has been in production for more than 30 years. ProMaster boasts numerous best-in-class features that are appreciated by the hard-working customers of Ram's new van. Best-in-class fuel efficiency, cargo capacity, usability and of course total cost of ownership all combine to deliver a proven solution for businesses and fleets. "As Ram takes a larger presence in the commercial truck market, the 2014 Ram ProMaster is a great addition, contributing to a one-stop shop of commercial-duty Ram trucks and vans," said Fred Diaz, President and CEO - Ram Truck Brand and Chrysler de Mexico, Chrysler Group LLC. "The ProMaster answers to key segment demands with best-in-class features, quality, durability, capability and low total cost of ownership." Ram Truck is tapping into Fiat Professional, one of the largest producers of commercial vehicles in the entire world, offering more than 110 years of experience. That knowledge will help Ram Truck enter new segments and expand its product line. The new 2014 Ram ProMaster is based on the front-wheel-drive Fiat Ducato, which is the most popular full-size van in Europe. The 2013 Ram ProMaster is the Company's first shared truck collaboration with Fiat Professional. The Fiat Ducato is now in its third generation with more than 4.5 million sold worldwide. The Ducato platform offers Ram a proven, award-winning workhorse with an incredible combination of durability, value, efficiency, and capability like no other in its class. Additionally, the ProMaster is the only offering in its competitive set to provide both a chassis cab and cutaway from the factory. Engineered for the North American market Conceived and developed in Italy, Ram's new van also spent quality time proving itself on this side of the Atlantic undergoing extensive, extreme-duty testing to prepare for its North American debut as the Ram ProMaster. Engineering the new ProMaster for the Ram Truck brand required a number of changes for new capabilities, powertrains, environments, duty cycles and customers. Chassis The 2014 ProMaster is available in two roof heights, three wheelbases, and four body lengths. Additionally, the ProMaster offers both a chassis cab and cutaway from the factory. Its unibody frame architecture makes it significantly lighter than the competition. As a result, the ProMaster boasts an impressive best-in-class payload capacity up to 5,145 pounds and a maximum towing capacity up to 5,100 pounds. The gross combined weight rating (GCWR) for the 3.6-liter V-6 is 11,500 pounds and 12,500 pounds for the 3.0-liter I-4 EcoDiesel. A unibody structural has additional advantages, including stability and strength from front to rear, a reinforced plenum area for optimized engine packaging, and "truer" tuning of chassis systems and related hardware when compared to more common body-on-frame applications. Front-wheel drive The unibody system under the cab is an enabler for the ProMaster's segment exclusive front-wheel-drive system. The body-integral construction and multiple configurations allow Ram's new 2014 ProMaster to be up-fitted for virtually every conceivable job. Without rear driveshafts or rear differentials, the proven drive system creates a number of advantages: • Best-in-class fuel economy • Best-in-class cargo capacity • Best-in-class step-in height and lowest load floor • Best-in-class ceiling height • Overall weight reduction and lower maintenance costs Cargo area Thanks to its unique front-drive system, body-integral construction and the multiple of configurations offered, Ram's new 2014 ProMaster can be upfit for virtually every conceivable commercial need. Proportionally, the ProMaster brings a new standard to the large commercial van-based segment. The ProMaster is available in two roof heights, 90 or 101 inches with best-in-class standard roof height and the most vertically oriented side walls in the cargo van category (nearly 90 degrees in relation to the cargo compartment floor). The ProMaster features a standard sliding door on the passenger side with an optional sliding door on the driver's side. The sliding door openings are based on roof height – 49 inch x 60 inch for the low roof model and 49 inch x 70 inch for high roof models. In the rear, an available two-position rear clamshell door swings open up to 260-degrees, folding almost flat to the side of the van. All three door openings enable fork lift pallet loading and unloading, and spaciousness that leads the competitive set. Upfitter friendliness Ram Truck is well known for being the most upfitter-friendly brand in the truck market. The Ram ProMaster continues the tradition and features an integrated cab configuration for unmatched up-fitter/conversion solutions. Adding to the ProMaster's design for adaptability, virtually all primary vehicle systems are packaged forward of the cargo area. Electronic stability control The standard electronic stability control (ESC) system on the new Ram ProMaster is a sophisticated four-channel (independent control to all four corners of the vehicle) active handling system that links the vehicle's dynamic control systems to assist the driver in maintaining control under demanding or adverse conditions such as wet, snow-covered or icy roads, tight turns, and evasive maneuvers. In effect, the ESC determines the driver's intentions and optimizes overall vehicle control to keep the dynamic forces within select limits in any driving situation – nearly transparent so control seems almost intuitive. Powertrain The 2014 Ram ProMaster van's powertrain lineup features the award-winning standard-equipment, gasoline-fueled V-6 and a torque-laden, I-4 EcoDiesel engine. The engines are paired, respectively, with a proven six-speed automatic transmission and an electronically controlled six-speed automated manual. EcoDiesel The 2014 Ram ProMaster marks the North American introduction of the potent 174-horsepower 3.0-liter inline 4-cylinder EcoDiesel engine that generates peak torque of 295 lb.-ft. at just 1,400 rpm. The engine features a number of refinements, including internal engine components, turbo and emission controls. Helping to reduced total cost of ownership, an oil-level sensor contributes to an oil-change schedule of up to 18,500 miles. Pentastar The standard-equipment 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 is rated at 280 horsepower with peak torque of 260 lb.-ft., the dual overhead cam, 24-valve Pentastar delivers the capability required of a commercial van without compromising refinement – hallmarks that have contributed to its ranking among Ward's 10 Best Engines for three years running. Reducing vehicle operating costs was paramount in the minds of the powertrain engineers who contributed to Ram ProMaster's development. Recommended oil-change intervals range up to 10,000 miles. But an intelligent oil-servicing system that monitors vehicle usage will trigger an alert when service is most appropriate. Transmissions The smooth-shifting 62TE automatic transmission is upgraded to accommodate the Ram ProMaster's prodigious weight ratings. Specifically, its 3.86 final-drive ratio enables comfortable grade transit under full freight. The transmission more readily adopts the most appropriate ratio for a given driving situation. The numerically lower overall top gear ratio delivers a more economical highway operation. The trailer/tow program comes standard with 62TE and the new M40 automated manual, which is not only exclusive to the 3.0-liter EcoDiesel, it stands alone in the Ram ProMaster's competitive set. The unique M40 gearbox delivers the efficiency of a manual transmission with the functionality of an automatic. At its core, it is a manual, but gear shifts and clutch functions are accomplished with electro-hydraulic actuation system. However, the driver can opt for manual shift-lever inputs when desired. But the driver needn't do all the work. Gearbox software delivers a unique response to driving conditions. Shift logic is adjusted according to grade steepness. The result is a well-connected driving experience that delivers the fuel economy required of a commercial van such as the Ram ProMaster. Design The Ram design team started with a functional exterior and interior, adding distinct Ram styling while adapting the new full-size van for North America. Exterior The front of the new ProMaster is identified by visually durable bodylines, a broad wraparound bumper and twin-reflector headlamp clusters. True to the Ram Truck brand, the ProMaster leads with a bold, hexagon-shaped crosshair grille, featuring the Ram's head logo proudly displayed as the focal point of the crosshair. The cab-forward, short dash to front axle design pushes the nose inward and the headlamps upward. This design provides higher passenger seating positions and better visibility – obviously important for commercial users – thanks to a more confident vantage point from which to operate the vehicle. The front bumper is a three-piece styled modular design, resulting in reduced repair costs and downtime. Durable front-wheel arches are styled with the bumper to protect the doors. A unique step is designed into both front bumper corners, making it easy to clean the windscreen from either side. The new full-size van features plenty of real estate on all four sides. This space allows for businesses to post signage and graphics, making the van a rolling billboard to help promote the owner, trade or vocation. Interior The functional and innovative features continue inside the Ram ProMaster. Although much was borrowed from the Fiat version, Ram designers made alterations for U.S. customers. Interior design and function is of primary importance for a light commercial vehicle in which the driver normally spends long hours at the wheel, often under demanding conditions. The cabin of the ProMaster was therefore designed with comfortable driving ergonomics, important because the ProMaster is a place of work. Because goods always need to be transported in total safety, the new Ram ProMaster van is fitted with accommodations to hold down goods on the floor. Up to 17 tie-down rings with 1,000-lb. rating fold away to maintain a flat floor, easing loading and unloading operations. Available partitions also offer passengers excellent protection against the possibility of load shift the cabin. Safety Safety and security were two of the guiding principles followed by engineers throughout the development of the new 2014 Ram ProMaster van. Ram's new full-size van offers more than 35 active and passive safety and security features. The ProMaster also includes standard ESC, hosting a number of technologies such as trailer-sway control. Security also means notification of the traffic around you. Ram ProMaster features ParkView backup camera and ParkSense with audible warning, all of which are useful when maneuvering a large van. Uconnect ProMaster customers can make the best use of their valuable time by leveraging Uconnect's easy-to-learn, easy-to-use interface – acclaimed for its convenience and sensible design. Handsfree calling in the all-new 2014 Ram ProMaster is made convenient via reliable Bluetooth technology. Similarly, the truck's handsfree text-reply feature enables customers to quickly deliver messages. A full-color, five-inch touchscreen is available with global positioning satellite (GPS) navigation, providing Ram ProMaster customers the ability to chart time-saving routes to their destinations. Uconnect Web, powered by Autonet Mobile, is available to U.S. customers. This system delivers continuous Internet connectivity, creating an efficient workspace and real-time information access on the go. Best practices In total, the Ram ProMaster test fleet accumulated millions of miles enabling Ram and Fiat teams access to real-world data. This includes testing done in laboratories in Turin, Italy and Auburn Hills, Mich., at Fiat and Chrysler Group proving grounds, as well as reliability testing on public roads in many different climates in Europe and the United States. The 3/36 Reliability Testing, appropriately named as each test car accumulates 36,000 miles (equivalent to three years of use) in about three months, is conducted day and night by teams of drivers. To reflect typical daily driver scenarios, the test drivers do not originate from the engineering ranks and are intentionally chosen from diverse backgrounds to represent customers of different ages, sizes and ethnicities. The test drivers scrutinize all the customer functional aspects of each vehicle as well as overall driving evaluations. This includes radio and navigation system checks, seat-belt buckling, heating and ventilation operation and opening and closing storage compartments and windows. Configurations The 2014 Ram ProMaster offers 13 different configurations: ProMaster 1500 Cargo Van 118-inch wheelbase low roof ProMaster 1500 Cargo Van 136-inch wheelbase low roof ProMaster 1500 Cargo Van 136-inch wheelbase high roof ProMaster 2500 Cargo Van 136-inch wheelbase high roof ProMaster 2500 Cargo Van 159-inch wheelbase high roof ProMaster 3500 Cargo Van 159-inch wheelbase high roof ProMaster 3500 Cargo Van 159-inch wheelbase high roof extended body ProMaster 3500 Chassis Cab 136-inch wheelbase ProMaster 3500 Chassis Cab 159-inch wheelbase ProMaster 3500 Chassis Cab 159-inch wheelbase extended body ProMaster 3500 Chassis Cab Cutaway 136-inch wheelbase ProMaster 3500 Chassis Cab Cutaway 159-inch wheelbase ProMaster 3500 Chassis Cab Cutaway 159-inch wheelbase extended frame ProMaster competitors are: Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, Ford Transit, Ford Econoline, Chevrolet Express, GMC Savanna and Nissan NV Cargo. Manufacturing Start of production for the 2014 Ram ProMaster is scheduled for third quarter of 2013. All configurations will be produced at the Saltillo Van Assembly Plant in Saltillo, Mexico.
  14. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com January 13, 2013 Its a momentous occasion whenever Chevrolet introduces a new Corvette and the introduction of the seventh-generation model tonight in Detroit is no exception to this. The seventh-generation Corvette brings forth a many changes to vehicle, starting with its name. Chevrolet resurrected the Stingray nameplate and put it on this new Corvette. The exterior design is a mishmash of the C6 and 2009 Stingray concept. Up front there is a wide grille, a more sculpted hood, and HID headlights. The side features more creases and numerous vents. The one part that will get a lot of controversy is the C7's rear end. Its completely unlike any other Corvette rear end at all thanks in part to the unique shape of taillights, new vents, and quad tailpipes. Under the C7's skin, Chevrolet has made a lot of changes. The C7 rides atop a atop an aluminum frame (Like the C6 Z06 and ZR1). That helps drop 99 pounds and increases rigidity by 57%. Other weight loss tricks include hollow, cast-aluminum lower control arms, carbon roof and hood panels, a sheet-molded compound for the fenders, doors and rear quarters; and advanced carbon-nano composite underbody panels. These changes drop another 37 pounds and gives the C7 a 50/50 weight balance. Power comes a 6.2L LT1 V8 engine with cylinder-deactivation that produces 450 horsepower and 450 pound-feet of torque. You have the choice of either a seven-speed manual transmission with rev-matching or a six-speed automatic. Chevrolet says the C7 can reach sixty in under four seconds and will best the C6's 26 MPG combined. The C7 will also feature a Drive Mode Selector that allows drivers to pick from five different settings (Weather, Eco, Tour, Sport and Track). The system will then change twelve different functions including throttle, active fuel management, steering effort, exhaust note, stability control and traction control. The C7's interior is a massive improvement over the outgoing model. The driver-focused cockpit features soft-touch surfaces, real aluminum trim, and optional carbon fiber accents. There are also the choice of two seats; a standard seat for long-range comfort and a competition-type seat. The new Corvette goes on sale in the second quarter of 2013. Album: 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Live Shots 6 images 0 comments Album: 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray 21 images 0 comments William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 Return of the Stingray: The 2014 Chevrolet Corvette DETROIT – Chevrolet is redefining modern performance with today's debut of the all-new Corvette Stingray. And only a Corvette with the perfect balance of technology, design and performance can wear the iconic Stingray designation. The 2014 Corvette Stingray is the most powerful standard model ever, with an estimated 450 horsepower (335 kW) and 450 lb.-ft. of torque (610 Nm). It is also the most capable standard model ever, able to accelerate from 0-60 in less than four seconds and achieve more than 1g in cornering grip. It is expected to be the most fuel-efficient Corvette, exceeding the EPA-estimated 26 mpg of the current model. "Like the '63 Sting Ray, the best Corvettes embodied performance leadership, delivering cutting-edge technologies, breathtaking design and awe-inspiring driving experiences," said GM North America President Mark Reuss. "The all-new Corvette goes farther than ever, thanks to today's advancements in design, technology and engineering." The all-new Corvette Stingray shares only two parts with the previous generation Corvette. It incorporates an all-new frame structure and chassis, a new powertrain and supporting technologies, as well as completely new exterior and interior designs. Highlights include: • An interior that includes real carbon fiber, aluminum and hand-wrapped leather materials, two new seat choices – each featuring a lightweight magnesium frame for exceptional support – and dual eight-inch configurable driver/infotainment screens • Advanced driver technologies, including a five-position Drive Mode Selector that tailors 12 vehicle attributes to the fit the driver's environment and a new seven-speed manual transmission with Active Rev Matching that anticipates gear selections and matches engine speed for perfect shifts every time • An all-new 6.2L LT1 V-8 engine combines advanced technologies, including direct injection, Active Fuel Management, continuously variable valve timing and an advanced combustion system that delivers more power while using less fuel • Lightweight materials, including a carbon fiber hood and removable roof panel; composite fenders, doors and rear quarter panels; carbon-nano composite underbody panels and a new aluminum frame help shift weight rearward for an optimal 50/50 weight balance that supports a world-class power-to-weight ratio • A sculptured exterior features advanced high-intensity discharge and light-emitting diode lighting and racing-proven aerodynamics that balance low drag for efficiency and performance elements for improved stability and track capability • Track-capable Z51 Performance Package including: an electronic limited-slip differential, dry-sump oiling system, integral brake, differential and transmission cooling, as well as a unique aero package that further improves high-speed stability. "Stingray is one of the hallowed names in automotive history," said Ed Welburn, GM vice president of global design. "We knew we couldn't use the Stingray name unless the new car truly lived up to the legacy. The result is a new Corvette Stingray that breaks from tradition, while remaining instantly recognizable as a Corvette the world over." The new Corvette Stingray will be built at GM's Bowling Green, Ky., assembly plant, which underwent a $131-million upgrade, including approximately $52 million for a new body shop to manufacture the aluminum frame in-house for the first time. "We believe the Corvette represents the future of modern performance cars because it delivers more power, more driving excitement and better fuel efficiency," said Tadge Juechter, Corvette chief engineer. "The result is better performance by every measure. The 2014 Corvette delivers the fastest acceleration, the most cornering grip, the most track capability, the best braking performance and what we expect to be the best fuel economy ever for a standard Corvette." The 2014 Corvette Stingray coupe goes on sale in the third quarter of 2013. Handcrafted, high-tech interior • Premium materials including genuine aluminum and available carbon fiber trim • More connected driving experience through the smaller-diameter steering wheel and two new seat choices • Advanced technologies including standard dual, high-resolution information screens and available color head-up display. The new Corvette Stingray interior blends fine materials and craftsmanship with advanced technologies that contribute to a more connected and more engaging driving experience, said Helen Emsley, interior design director. "Every feature and detail in the interior is designed to enhance the driver's connection to the Corvette," Emsley said. "It starts with the fighter jet inspired wraparound cockpit; continues to build with the smaller steering wheel, more supportive seats, and high-definition, configurable screens, and is finished in gorgeous materials." The smaller, 14.1-inch-diameter (360 mm) steering wheel fosters a more direct, immediate feel to directional inputs. The attention to the driver extends to the smallest details, including the flat, precise stitching on the steering wheel designed to provide a smooth, consistent feel. Precise and elegant stitching also is seen in the available Napa leather trim of the all-new seats. Two seating choices will be offered: a GT seat for all-around comfort and a Competition Sport seat with more aggressive side bolstering which provides greater support on the track. The frame structure for both seats is made of magnesium for greater strength and less weight than comparable steel frames. They're also more rigid, contributing to the enhanced feeling of support during performance driving. Additional performance-enhancing details of the interior resulted from designers' "field trips" to GM's Proving Ground in Milford, Mich., where high-performance driving experiences spurred the design and implementation of several features, including a steel-reinforced grab bar on the center console for the passenger and soft-touch materials on the edge of the console, where the driver naturally braces during high-load cornering. High-performance driving also influenced elements of the configurable display screens and available head-up display, which vary depending on the driving mode, including the Track display inspired by the C6.R. The performance-supporting elements inside the new Corvette Stingray are complemented by unprecedented attention to detail and build quality, including the sweeping arch motif over the driver cockpit trim and the seamless transition of the line from the instrument panel to the door. All models feature a fully-wrapped interior, where every surface is covered with premium, soft-touch materials. Available materials, depending on the trim level, include Napa leather, aluminum, carbon fiber and micro-suede. A blend of hand craftsmanship and machined precision is intended to ensure the fit, finish and ambience of the cabin is first-rate. The leather-wrapped instrument panel, for example, features hand-selected and hand-stretched materials for better grain matching with stitching performed by robots that deliver perfect seams. There's even a micro-LED screen for the passenger's climate control placed below the vent on the on the dash away from the performance features on the instrument panel. "To ensure the high quality of the interior, we spent time working on the line alongside the team that builds the Corvette every day at Bowling Green Assembly Plant," said Ryan Vaughan, interior design manager. "And thanks to that collaboration between design, engineering and manufacturing, we were able to make adjustments that allowed us to maintain the integrity of the design, improve the assembly process and ultimately deliver what we believe to be a world-class interior." Driver-oriented technologies • Driver Mode Selector optimizes 12 vehicle attributes • Configurable screens and head-up display can be tailored to the driver's preference • Central touch screen uses gesture-recognition technology. At the core of the Corvette Stingray's driver-focused technologies is the cockpit-mounted Driver Mode Selector, which allows drivers to optimize the car for their driving preference and road conditions via five settings: Weather, Eco, Tour, Sport and Track. "The all-new Corvette Stingray is really three cars in one: It provides the comfort and functionality of a long-distance GT car, the connectedness and infotainment of a daily driver and the acceleration, grip and braking of a capable track car," said Harlan Charles, product manager. "With the Driver Mode Selector, we wanted to give the driver an easy way to tailor virtually every aspect of the car to fit their driving environment. The result is a more rewarding, more confident experience, whether you're commuting in a downpour or charging through the corkscrew at Laguna Seca." The Driver Mode Selector is easy to use via a rotary knob near the shifter. The Tour mode is the default setting for everyday driving; Weather mode is designed primarily for added confidence while driving in rain and snow; Eco mode is for achieving optimal fuel economy; Sport mode is for spirited road driving and Track mode is for track use. "Early in the development process, we spent time on the track, driving Corvettes hard. That experience shaped many parts of the interior, such as the instrument display in Track Mode," said Vaughn. "At 120 mph, you experience a sort of tunnel vision, as you concentrate on the next turn. At that moment, you don't need to know the next song playing on the radio." Twelve performance parameters are adjusted with the selection of each mode, including: • Gauge cluster configuration: The Tour, Eco and Weather modes feature displays for trip data, audio and navigation; Sport mode shows classic, easy-to-read sports car gauges; and Track mode's configuration shows a gauge design based on the Corvette Racing C6.R race car display with lap timer • ETC (Electronic Throttle Control): Adjusts the throttle input curve for the selected mode for improved responsiveness • Paddle-shift automatic transmission: Adjusts shift comfort and shift points • Active Fuel Management: in normal mode, the LT1 engine uses V-8 power during acceleration and V-4 power when coasting; in Eco mode the engine remains in V-4 mode to improve fuel economy until aggressive acceleration is needed • Exhaust (active exhaust system): The system adjusts the timing of the electronically controlled exhaust valves to enhance audible feedback from the V-8 depending on the drive mode • Electronic limited-slip differential (Z51): Adjusts the rate at which the limited slip engages, to balance between steering response and stability in different driving conditions; more aggressive performance in Sport and Track modes • Steering: Assist effort is adjusted in the modes to provide the driver with the correct steering feel for the driving condition • Magnetic Ride Control: Adjusts shock damping based on road conditions, from optimized comfort to performance driving • Launch control: Available in Sport and Track modes for manual and automatic transmissions, providing maximum off-the-line acceleration • Active handling (StabiliTrak stability control): A "competitive" setting is available in Sport and Track modes and is more suited for on-track conditions. It can also be disabled, giving the driver complete control • Traction control: Weather mode tailors traction control and engine torque for driving in inclement conditions • Performance Traction Management: Available in the Sport and Track modes and offers five settings of torque reduction and brake intervention for track driving. Three configurable displays, including a pair of eight-inch screens and color head-up display, deliver personalized information and convey the different performance parameters of each drive mode. The two eight-inch screens offer excellent visibility in direct sunlight, with 650 cd/m2 of brightness for the one integrated into the instrument cluster and 1,000 cd/m2 of brightness for the one in the center stack, making it among the brightest screens in the industry. The screen in the center stack also features touch-screen control with gesture recognition and can be lowered to reveal a hidden storage that includes a USB input for device charging or uploads. The Corvette Stingray delivers an advanced infotainment system, featuring Chevrolet MyLink and high-definition radio, as well as enhanced OnStar with 3D navigation maps. An additional USB port in the center console, a stand-alone audio input jack and an SD card slot provide seamless connectivity. An available premium 10-speaker audio system includes a bass box and two subwoofers – and speakers with rare-earth magnets that deliver greater sound quality with reduced weight and size. Every line counts on Corvette Stingray's functionally elegant exterior • Aerodynamic design integrates strategies from Corvette racing • Signature lighting includes distinctive frosted light-emitting diode daytime driving lights, high-intensity discharge headlamps and indirect-LED taillamps • Carbon fiber hood and removable roof panel enhance front/rear weight balance Corvette Stingray's provocative exterior styling is as functional as it is elegant, said Ken Parkinson, executive director of global design. "Developing a new Corvette, while every designer's dream, is not an easy task," Parkinson said. "The goal was a bold design statement that embraced the advanced technology of the car, while enhancing its overall performance in everything from the wind tunnel to the track. The result is a new Corvette Stingray – a fantastic car that breaks new ground yet remains true to the fundamental elements that make a Corvette a Corvette." While no single detail is repeated from previous generations, the new Corvette Stingray include the distinctive profile defined by a long dash-to-axle ratio and the greenhouse evoking the canopy of a fighter jet with dual-element taillamps. To this foundation, designers built a form vocabulary from two very different sources: aerospace and nature. "For the new Corvette to be called a Stingray, it had to deliver an incredible, purposeful visual impact – just as the original did in 1963," said Tom Peters, exterior design director. "That visual impact is evident in fighter jets and the Stingray animal itself. Their beauty comes from their purpose, designed to cut through air or water as quickly and efficiently as possible. As with aircraft and living forms, every transition on every surface of the Corvette Stingray serves a purpose executed with beauty and proportion." Lighting is a signature element of the Corvette Stingray's design and reinforces its high-tech aesthetic. At the front, indirect white LED lamps form a distinctive daytime styling cue. They are set in a black-chrome lamp housing with standard HID projector headlamps. The turn signals feature edge-lit amber LED lighting. All-new, dual-element taillamps represent the greatest departure from tradition and are among the car's most dramatic elements. The three-dimensional, sculpted lenses house innovative indirect LED lighting. The state-of-the-art lighting uses hidden LED lamps that cast their light up from the bottom of the housing into a reverse reflector, creating an even glow. LED lamps are also used for the white backup lamps. The taillamps integrate functional aircraft-style air outlets for the available differential and transmission coolers. "From the front or rear, the signature lighting brings the new Corvette to life," said Peters. "It looks beautiful, sinister and more than a little intimidating. It gives the Corvette a nighttime appearance unlike anything else on the street." When it comes to aerodynamics, the new Stingray is in a league of its own. Advanced computer-aided modeling programs were employed to predict and track airflow over, under and through the new Corvette's body. Engineers and designers also relied on data gleaned from the Corvette Racing program – the most successful program ever in the American Le Mans Series and the 2012 GT class champion – to help balance front and rear grip for high-speed stability. Many hours were spent in the wind tunnel hand-sculpting surfaces for aesthetics and performance. Functional exterior elements include: • All models have a new grille/radiator arrangement and hood vents. Venting air out of the hood reduces total front-end lift for improved steering response at high speeds • The front fender side coves also help vent underhood air pressure to reduce aerodynamic drag • Models with the automatic transmission or Z51 Performance Package feature a functional vent on driver's left side directing air over a heat exchanger for the transmission fluid and a similar arrangement on the passenger side that directs air • over a heat exchanger for the electronic limited slip differential • Airflow through the differential and transmission heat exchangers exit through the aircraft-inspired taillamp vents and lower-rear fascia air outlets • The Z51 Performance Package also includes brake-cooling ducts, a unique rear spoiler and additional air deflectors for enhanced track capability. "Every square inch of the 2014 Corvette's exterior is designed to enhance high-performance driving," said Kirk Bennion, exterior design manager. "The team delivered a great balance of low drag for efficiency and performance elements for improved stability and track capability – all in a sculpted design that excites in all the ways that a Corvette has for six decades." Engineered to race, built for the road • New aluminum frame structure is 57-percent stiffer and 99 pounds (45 kg) lighter than the current steel frame • Innovative use of composite materials, including carbon fiber the hood and roof panels, lightweight Sheet Molded Compound for the fenders, doors and rear quarter panels, and carbon-nano composite for the underbody panels help reduce the weight of the body by a 37 pounds (17 kg) • New LT1 V-8 uses advanced technologies to produce more power with less fuel and is paired with an industry-exclusive seven-speed manual transmission with Active Rev Matching for more precise up and down shifts. The new Corvette Stingray takes advantage of lightweight materials, advanced manufacturing techniques and technology transfer from the Corvette Racing program to produce an ideal 50/50 weight balance and to deliver a world-class power-to-weight ratio. "Chevrolet has a long history of using racing to improve production cars, and nowhere is that more evident than with Corvette," said Jeuchter. "We continually apply technologies and strategies developed for Corvette Racing directly to the production car. That influence can be seen in virtually every aspect of the new Corvette Stingray, from the aerodynamic design to the use of carbon fiber, to the cooling techniques and even in the brake system The technologically advanced foundation is an all-new aluminum frame structure that is 57 percent stiffer and 99 pounds (45 kg) lighter. The greater torsional rigidity reduces unwanted noise and improves ride and handling. Compared to the previous generation, which used continuous hydroformed main frame rails with a constant 2mm wall thickness, the new Corvette's frame features main rails composed of five customized aluminum segments, including aluminum extrusions at each end, a center main rail section and hollow-cast nodes at the suspension interface points. Each segment is tuned – varying in thickness from 2mm to 11mm – tailoring the gauge, shape and strength properties to optimize the requirements for each frame section with minimal weight. The frame is assembled at an all-new welding shop at the Bowling Green Assembly Plant using a unique laser welding process in which a computer-controlled beam of high energy joins the components with exceptional precision and tolerances of about 0.001-inch. Supporting the frame's greater strength and lower weight are complementing chassis elements, including hollow-cast aluminum front and rear cradles that are approximately 25-percent lighter and 20-percent stiffer than the solid cradles used on the previous structure. The innovative use of materials includes a standard carbon fiber hood and roof panel, as well as underbody panels created with carbon-nano composite technology, an advanced blend of traditional composite material and carbon fiber, which allows lighter underbody panels without a loss of strength or stiffness. Fenders, doors, rear quarter panels and the rear hatch panel are made with lighter-density Sheet Molded Compound than the previous generation. Combined, these materials save approximately 37 pounds (17 kg) versus the previous body structure. The lightweight elements of the Stingray contribute to the ideal 50/50 weight balance. Combined with its estimated 450 horsepower (335 kW), the new Corvette delivers a better power-to-weight ratio than the Porsche 911 Carrera or Audi R8. Those 450 horses are generated by an all-new LT1 6.2L Small Block V-8 engine, which produces an estimated 450 lb.-ft. of torque (610 Nm). More importantly, it generates 50 lb.-ft. more low-end torque than the previous 6.2L engine, matching the 7.0L LS7 engine from the 2013 Corvette Z06 from 1,000 to 4,000 rpm. The engine's performance comes from combining advanced technologies like direct injection, Active Fuel Management and continuously variable valve timing with an advanced combustion system. More than 10 million hours of computational analysis went into the new Small Block's design, including more than 6 million hours alone on the combustion system. The LT1 is backed by a choice of active exhaust systems that are less restrictive than the previous generation, due in part to an increase in diameter from 2.5 inches to 2.75 inches. The standard system offers a 13-percent improvement in airflow and features a pair of butterfly valves that contribute to greater refinement at cruising speeds when the engine is operating in fuel-saving V-4 mode. An available dual-mode active exhaust system offers a 27-percent improvement in airflow. It features two additional valves that open to a lower-restriction path through the mufflers. When open, these valves increase engine performance and produce a more powerful exhaust note. The LT1 is mated to either a six-speed paddle-shift automatic transmission or an industry-exclusive TREMEC TR6070 seven-speed manual with Active Rev Matching. The Corvette retains its distinctive rear transaxle layout for optimal weight balance. The seven-speed manual incorporates rev-matching technology for upshifts and downshifts. This driver-selectable feature can be easily engaged or disengaged via paddles on the steering wheel. The seven-speed is used with a new dual-mass flywheel and dual-disc clutch, which deliver greater shift quality and feel through lower inertia. The transmission with the Z51 Performance Package includes specific close-ratio gearing for more aggressive driving. "Active Rev Matching makes the new Corvette easier and more fun to drive in performance conditions," said Jeuchter. "It anticipates the next gear selection and electronically 'blips' the throttle to match engine speed for a seamless gear change." A six-speed Hydra-Matic 6L80 paddle-shift automatic is also available. It is optimized for use with Active Fuel Management and features a lower-inertia torque converter for improved shift quality and shift speeds. In addition, shift feel and shift points can be adjusted through the Driver Mode Selector. More direct, more connected driving feel • Third-generation Magnetic Ride Control for greater comfort and control • Electric power steering system tailors steering response and feel • Electronic limited-slip differential delivers optimal traction The new Corvette Stingray's chassis and suspension are designed to take advantage of the lighter, stiffer structure. The reduced structural flex allowed engineers to more precisely tune the suspension and steering for a more nimble and responsive driving experience. "An important goal for the seventh-generation Corvette was to create a more intimate and connected driving experience, said Mike Bailey, chassis vehicle system engineer. "Whether on the open road or on the track, we wanted drivers to feel comfortable and confident behind the wheel." While the Corvette Stingray retains the racing-proven short/long-arm suspension design, front and rear, the components are all-new. Improvements to the suspension include hollow lower control arms which save approximately nine pounds (4 kg) per vehicle and new aluminum rear toe links which save 2.4 pounds (1.1 kg) over previous steel links. The Corvette Stingray rides on new 18 x 8.5-inch front and 19 x 10-inch rear wheels, while models with the Z51 Performance Package roll on 19 x 8.5-inch front and 20 x 10-inch rear forged aluminum wheels. New Michelin Pilot Super Sport run-flat tires developed specifically for the seventh-generation Corvette deliver comparable levels of grip than the wider tires of previous models. As a result, the track-oriented Corvette Stingray with the Z51 Performance Package is capable of 1g in cornering acceleration – comparable to the 2013 Corvette Grand Sport. Significantly, that is achieved with narrower and lighter wheels and tires. The reduced "footprint" reduces rolling resistance, steering effort and road noise, contributing to a more nimble feel, more immediate steering response and greater touring comfort and efficiency. Dimensionally, the new Corvette's wheelbase is approximately an inch longer than the previous generation, with front and rear tracks that are almost an inch wider. Those changes provide a more stable feel, particularly at high speeds, while the turning radius is decreased by approximately two feet for greater maneuverability in tight turns. The Corvette Stingray features standard 35mm-piston Bilstein monotube shocks that connect to dual-path aluminum shock mounts that separate the shock rod and shock body load paths. The Z51 Performance Package comes with 45mm-piston Bilstein dampers for more aggressive body control and track capability. Z51 is available with the third-generation Magnetic Ride Control, which features a new twin-wire/dual-coil damper system that reacts 40 percent faster, enabling improved ride comfort and body control. The new electric power steering system offers variable ratios and variable effort to tailor responsiveness and feel for each driving situation. It also delivers more precise control and feedback to the driver, along with greater variability of effort for high-performance driving and greater on-center sensitivity and linearity. Steering feel was further improved by increasing steering column stiffness by 150 percent, increasing intermediate shaft torsional stiffness by 600 percent, and mounting the steering gear to the front cradle structure. As a result the steering system is five times stiffer than the previous generation. A smart electronic limited-slip differential (eLSD) is included in the Z51 Performance Package and continuously makes the most of the torque split between the rear wheels. The system features a hydraulically actuated clutch that can infinitely vary clutch engagement and can respond from open to full engagement in tenths of a second. It shifts torque based on a unique algorithm which factors in vehicle speed, steering input and throttle position to improve steering feel, handling balance and traction. "The electronic limited-slip differential transforms the Stingray by optimizing handling for the driving situation," said Mike Bailey, vehicle systems engineer, chassis. "By continuously modulating the torque split between the rear wheels, the eLSD can improve traction accelerating out of corner, improve stability on the highway and enhance steering turn-in and responsiveness." The eLSD is fully integrated with StabiliTrak and Performance Traction Management systems. Its calibrations vary among three modes, based on the Drive Mode Selector setting: • Mode 1 is the default setting for normal driving and emphasizes vehicle stability • Mode 2 is engaged when electronic stability control is turned off in the Sport or Track Driver Modes. This calibration enables more nimble turn-in and traction while accelerating out of a corner • Mode 3 is automatically selected when Performance Traction Management is engaged. This calibration has the same function as Mode 2, but is fine-tuned to work with Performance Traction Management. Standard Brembo brakes, with four-piston fixed calipers derived from racing, deliver exceptional stopping power on the street or track. System highlights include: • 12.6-inch (320 mm) front rotors and 13.3-inch (338 mm) rear rotors are standard and have 35 percent more swept area than previous-generation brakes. Consequently stopping distance is improved 9 percent • Dual-cast, slotted 13.6-inch (345 mm) front rotors and 13.3-inch (338 mm) slotted rear rotors are included with Z51 Performance Package. They have 6percent more swept area than the previous-generation Grand Sport and are cooled front and rear for improved track capability. Consequently stopping distance is improved 5 percent • All brake packages have fixed front and rear calipers are stiffer for more even pad wear, reduced drag and improved modulation.
  15. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com January 13, 2013 Its a momentous occasion whenever Chevrolet introduces a new Corvette and the introduction of the seventh-generation model tonight in Detroit is no exception to this. The seventh-generation Corvette brings forth a many changes to vehicle, starting with its name. Chevrolet resurrected the Stingray nameplate and put it on this new Corvette. The exterior design is a mishmash of the C6 and 2009 Stingray concept. Up front there is a wide grille, a more sculpted hood, and HID headlights. The side features more creases and numerous vents. The one part that will get a lot of controversy is the C7's rear end. Its completely unlike any other Corvette rear end at all thanks in part to the unique shape of taillights, new vents, and quad tailpipes. Under the C7's skin, Chevrolet has made a lot of changes. The C7 rides atop a atop an aluminum frame (Like the C6 Z06 and ZR1). That helps drop 99 pounds and increases rigidity by 57%. Other weight loss tricks include hollow, cast-aluminum lower control arms, carbon roof and hood panels, a sheet-molded compound for the fenders, doors and rear quarters; and advanced carbon-nano composite underbody panels. These changes drop another 37 pounds and gives the C7 a 50/50 weight balance. Power comes a 6.2L LT1 V8 engine with cylinder-deactivation that produces 450 horsepower and 450 pound-feet of torque. You have the choice of either a seven-speed manual transmission with rev-matching or a six-speed automatic. Chevrolet says the C7 can reach sixty in under four seconds and will best the C6's 26 MPG combined. The C7 will also feature a Drive Mode Selector that allows drivers to pick from five different settings (Weather, Eco, Tour, Sport and Track). The system will then change twelve different functions including throttle, active fuel management, steering effort, exhaust note, stability control and traction control. The C7's interior is a massive improvement over the outgoing model. The driver-focused cockpit features soft-touch surfaces, real aluminum trim, and optional carbon fiber accents. There are also the choice of two seats; a standard seat for long-range comfort and a competition-type seat. The new Corvette goes on sale in the second quarter of 2013. Album: 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Live Shots 6 images 0 comments Album: 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray 21 images 0 comments William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 Return of the Stingray: The 2014 Chevrolet Corvette DETROIT – Chevrolet is redefining modern performance with today's debut of the all-new Corvette Stingray. And only a Corvette with the perfect balance of technology, design and performance can wear the iconic Stingray designation. The 2014 Corvette Stingray is the most powerful standard model ever, with an estimated 450 horsepower (335 kW) and 450 lb.-ft. of torque (610 Nm). It is also the most capable standard model ever, able to accelerate from 0-60 in less than four seconds and achieve more than 1g in cornering grip. It is expected to be the most fuel-efficient Corvette, exceeding the EPA-estimated 26 mpg of the current model. "Like the '63 Sting Ray, the best Corvettes embodied performance leadership, delivering cutting-edge technologies, breathtaking design and awe-inspiring driving experiences," said GM North America President Mark Reuss. "The all-new Corvette goes farther than ever, thanks to today's advancements in design, technology and engineering." The all-new Corvette Stingray shares only two parts with the previous generation Corvette. It incorporates an all-new frame structure and chassis, a new powertrain and supporting technologies, as well as completely new exterior and interior designs. Highlights include: • An interior that includes real carbon fiber, aluminum and hand-wrapped leather materials, two new seat choices – each featuring a lightweight magnesium frame for exceptional support – and dual eight-inch configurable driver/infotainment screens • Advanced driver technologies, including a five-position Drive Mode Selector that tailors 12 vehicle attributes to the fit the driver's environment and a new seven-speed manual transmission with Active Rev Matching that anticipates gear selections and matches engine speed for perfect shifts every time • An all-new 6.2L LT1 V-8 engine combines advanced technologies, including direct injection, Active Fuel Management, continuously variable valve timing and an advanced combustion system that delivers more power while using less fuel • Lightweight materials, including a carbon fiber hood and removable roof panel; composite fenders, doors and rear quarter panels; carbon-nano composite underbody panels and a new aluminum frame help shift weight rearward for an optimal 50/50 weight balance that supports a world-class power-to-weight ratio • A sculptured exterior features advanced high-intensity discharge and light-emitting diode lighting and racing-proven aerodynamics that balance low drag for efficiency and performance elements for improved stability and track capability • Track-capable Z51 Performance Package including: an electronic limited-slip differential, dry-sump oiling system, integral brake, differential and transmission cooling, as well as a unique aero package that further improves high-speed stability. "Stingray is one of the hallowed names in automotive history," said Ed Welburn, GM vice president of global design. "We knew we couldn't use the Stingray name unless the new car truly lived up to the legacy. The result is a new Corvette Stingray that breaks from tradition, while remaining instantly recognizable as a Corvette the world over." The new Corvette Stingray will be built at GM's Bowling Green, Ky., assembly plant, which underwent a $131-million upgrade, including approximately $52 million for a new body shop to manufacture the aluminum frame in-house for the first time. "We believe the Corvette represents the future of modern performance cars because it delivers more power, more driving excitement and better fuel efficiency," said Tadge Juechter, Corvette chief engineer. "The result is better performance by every measure. The 2014 Corvette delivers the fastest acceleration, the most cornering grip, the most track capability, the best braking performance and what we expect to be the best fuel economy ever for a standard Corvette." The 2014 Corvette Stingray coupe goes on sale in the third quarter of 2013. Handcrafted, high-tech interior • Premium materials including genuine aluminum and available carbon fiber trim • More connected driving experience through the smaller-diameter steering wheel and two new seat choices • Advanced technologies including standard dual, high-resolution information screens and available color head-up display. The new Corvette Stingray interior blends fine materials and craftsmanship with advanced technologies that contribute to a more connected and more engaging driving experience, said Helen Emsley, interior design director. "Every feature and detail in the interior is designed to enhance the driver's connection to the Corvette," Emsley said. "It starts with the fighter jet inspired wraparound cockpit; continues to build with the smaller steering wheel, more supportive seats, and high-definition, configurable screens, and is finished in gorgeous materials." The smaller, 14.1-inch-diameter (360 mm) steering wheel fosters a more direct, immediate feel to directional inputs. The attention to the driver extends to the smallest details, including the flat, precise stitching on the steering wheel designed to provide a smooth, consistent feel. Precise and elegant stitching also is seen in the available Napa leather trim of the all-new seats. Two seating choices will be offered: a GT seat for all-around comfort and a Competition Sport seat with more aggressive side bolstering which provides greater support on the track. The frame structure for both seats is made of magnesium for greater strength and less weight than comparable steel frames. They're also more rigid, contributing to the enhanced feeling of support during performance driving. Additional performance-enhancing details of the interior resulted from designers' "field trips" to GM's Proving Ground in Milford, Mich., where high-performance driving experiences spurred the design and implementation of several features, including a steel-reinforced grab bar on the center console for the passenger and soft-touch materials on the edge of the console, where the driver naturally braces during high-load cornering. High-performance driving also influenced elements of the configurable display screens and available head-up display, which vary depending on the driving mode, including the Track display inspired by the C6.R. The performance-supporting elements inside the new Corvette Stingray are complemented by unprecedented attention to detail and build quality, including the sweeping arch motif over the driver cockpit trim and the seamless transition of the line from the instrument panel to the door. All models feature a fully-wrapped interior, where every surface is covered with premium, soft-touch materials. Available materials, depending on the trim level, include Napa leather, aluminum, carbon fiber and micro-suede. A blend of hand craftsmanship and machined precision is intended to ensure the fit, finish and ambience of the cabin is first-rate. The leather-wrapped instrument panel, for example, features hand-selected and hand-stretched materials for better grain matching with stitching performed by robots that deliver perfect seams. There's even a micro-LED screen for the passenger's climate control placed below the vent on the on the dash away from the performance features on the instrument panel. "To ensure the high quality of the interior, we spent time working on the line alongside the team that builds the Corvette every day at Bowling Green Assembly Plant," said Ryan Vaughan, interior design manager. "And thanks to that collaboration between design, engineering and manufacturing, we were able to make adjustments that allowed us to maintain the integrity of the design, improve the assembly process and ultimately deliver what we believe to be a world-class interior." Driver-oriented technologies • Driver Mode Selector optimizes 12 vehicle attributes • Configurable screens and head-up display can be tailored to the driver's preference • Central touch screen uses gesture-recognition technology. At the core of the Corvette Stingray's driver-focused technologies is the cockpit-mounted Driver Mode Selector, which allows drivers to optimize the car for their driving preference and road conditions via five settings: Weather, Eco, Tour, Sport and Track. "The all-new Corvette Stingray is really three cars in one: It provides the comfort and functionality of a long-distance GT car, the connectedness and infotainment of a daily driver and the acceleration, grip and braking of a capable track car," said Harlan Charles, product manager. "With the Driver Mode Selector, we wanted to give the driver an easy way to tailor virtually every aspect of the car to fit their driving environment. The result is a more rewarding, more confident experience, whether you're commuting in a downpour or charging through the corkscrew at Laguna Seca." The Driver Mode Selector is easy to use via a rotary knob near the shifter. The Tour mode is the default setting for everyday driving; Weather mode is designed primarily for added confidence while driving in rain and snow; Eco mode is for achieving optimal fuel economy; Sport mode is for spirited road driving and Track mode is for track use. "Early in the development process, we spent time on the track, driving Corvettes hard. That experience shaped many parts of the interior, such as the instrument display in Track Mode," said Vaughn. "At 120 mph, you experience a sort of tunnel vision, as you concentrate on the next turn. At that moment, you don't need to know the next song playing on the radio." Twelve performance parameters are adjusted with the selection of each mode, including: • Gauge cluster configuration: The Tour, Eco and Weather modes feature displays for trip data, audio and navigation; Sport mode shows classic, easy-to-read sports car gauges; and Track mode's configuration shows a gauge design based on the Corvette Racing C6.R race car display with lap timer • ETC (Electronic Throttle Control): Adjusts the throttle input curve for the selected mode for improved responsiveness • Paddle-shift automatic transmission: Adjusts shift comfort and shift points • Active Fuel Management: in normal mode, the LT1 engine uses V-8 power during acceleration and V-4 power when coasting; in Eco mode the engine remains in V-4 mode to improve fuel economy until aggressive acceleration is needed • Exhaust (active exhaust system): The system adjusts the timing of the electronically controlled exhaust valves to enhance audible feedback from the V-8 depending on the drive mode • Electronic limited-slip differential (Z51): Adjusts the rate at which the limited slip engages, to balance between steering response and stability in different driving conditions; more aggressive performance in Sport and Track modes • Steering: Assist effort is adjusted in the modes to provide the driver with the correct steering feel for the driving condition • Magnetic Ride Control: Adjusts shock damping based on road conditions, from optimized comfort to performance driving • Launch control: Available in Sport and Track modes for manual and automatic transmissions, providing maximum off-the-line acceleration • Active handling (StabiliTrak stability control): A "competitive" setting is available in Sport and Track modes and is more suited for on-track conditions. It can also be disabled, giving the driver complete control • Traction control: Weather mode tailors traction control and engine torque for driving in inclement conditions • Performance Traction Management: Available in the Sport and Track modes and offers five settings of torque reduction and brake intervention for track driving. Three configurable displays, including a pair of eight-inch screens and color head-up display, deliver personalized information and convey the different performance parameters of each drive mode. The two eight-inch screens offer excellent visibility in direct sunlight, with 650 cd/m2 of brightness for the one integrated into the instrument cluster and 1,000 cd/m2 of brightness for the one in the center stack, making it among the brightest screens in the industry. The screen in the center stack also features touch-screen control with gesture recognition and can be lowered to reveal a hidden storage that includes a USB input for device charging or uploads. The Corvette Stingray delivers an advanced infotainment system, featuring Chevrolet MyLink and high-definition radio, as well as enhanced OnStar with 3D navigation maps. An additional USB port in the center console, a stand-alone audio input jack and an SD card slot provide seamless connectivity. An available premium 10-speaker audio system includes a bass box and two subwoofers – and speakers with rare-earth magnets that deliver greater sound quality with reduced weight and size. Every line counts on Corvette Stingray's functionally elegant exterior • Aerodynamic design integrates strategies from Corvette racing • Signature lighting includes distinctive frosted light-emitting diode daytime driving lights, high-intensity discharge headlamps and indirect-LED taillamps • Carbon fiber hood and removable roof panel enhance front/rear weight balance Corvette Stingray's provocative exterior styling is as functional as it is elegant, said Ken Parkinson, executive director of global design. "Developing a new Corvette, while every designer's dream, is not an easy task," Parkinson said. "The goal was a bold design statement that embraced the advanced technology of the car, while enhancing its overall performance in everything from the wind tunnel to the track. The result is a new Corvette Stingray – a fantastic car that breaks new ground yet remains true to the fundamental elements that make a Corvette a Corvette." While no single detail is repeated from previous generations, the new Corvette Stingray include the distinctive profile defined by a long dash-to-axle ratio and the greenhouse evoking the canopy of a fighter jet with dual-element taillamps. To this foundation, designers built a form vocabulary from two very different sources: aerospace and nature. "For the new Corvette to be called a Stingray, it had to deliver an incredible, purposeful visual impact – just as the original did in 1963," said Tom Peters, exterior design director. "That visual impact is evident in fighter jets and the Stingray animal itself. Their beauty comes from their purpose, designed to cut through air or water as quickly and efficiently as possible. As with aircraft and living forms, every transition on every surface of the Corvette Stingray serves a purpose executed with beauty and proportion." Lighting is a signature element of the Corvette Stingray's design and reinforces its high-tech aesthetic. At the front, indirect white LED lamps form a distinctive daytime styling cue. They are set in a black-chrome lamp housing with standard HID projector headlamps. The turn signals feature edge-lit amber LED lighting. All-new, dual-element taillamps represent the greatest departure from tradition and are among the car's most dramatic elements. The three-dimensional, sculpted lenses house innovative indirect LED lighting. The state-of-the-art lighting uses hidden LED lamps that cast their light up from the bottom of the housing into a reverse reflector, creating an even glow. LED lamps are also used for the white backup lamps. The taillamps integrate functional aircraft-style air outlets for the available differential and transmission coolers. "From the front or rear, the signature lighting brings the new Corvette to life," said Peters. "It looks beautiful, sinister and more than a little intimidating. It gives the Corvette a nighttime appearance unlike anything else on the street." When it comes to aerodynamics, the new Stingray is in a league of its own. Advanced computer-aided modeling programs were employed to predict and track airflow over, under and through the new Corvette's body. Engineers and designers also relied on data gleaned from the Corvette Racing program – the most successful program ever in the American Le Mans Series and the 2012 GT class champion – to help balance front and rear grip for high-speed stability. Many hours were spent in the wind tunnel hand-sculpting surfaces for aesthetics and performance. Functional exterior elements include: • All models have a new grille/radiator arrangement and hood vents. Venting air out of the hood reduces total front-end lift for improved steering response at high speeds • The front fender side coves also help vent underhood air pressure to reduce aerodynamic drag • Models with the automatic transmission or Z51 Performance Package feature a functional vent on driver's left side directing air over a heat exchanger for the transmission fluid and a similar arrangement on the passenger side that directs air • over a heat exchanger for the electronic limited slip differential • Airflow through the differential and transmission heat exchangers exit through the aircraft-inspired taillamp vents and lower-rear fascia air outlets • The Z51 Performance Package also includes brake-cooling ducts, a unique rear spoiler and additional air deflectors for enhanced track capability. "Every square inch of the 2014 Corvette's exterior is designed to enhance high-performance driving," said Kirk Bennion, exterior design manager. "The team delivered a great balance of low drag for efficiency and performance elements for improved stability and track capability – all in a sculpted design that excites in all the ways that a Corvette has for six decades." Engineered to race, built for the road • New aluminum frame structure is 57-percent stiffer and 99 pounds (45 kg) lighter than the current steel frame • Innovative use of composite materials, including carbon fiber the hood and roof panels, lightweight Sheet Molded Compound for the fenders, doors and rear quarter panels, and carbon-nano composite for the underbody panels help reduce the weight of the body by a 37 pounds (17 kg) • New LT1 V-8 uses advanced technologies to produce more power with less fuel and is paired with an industry-exclusive seven-speed manual transmission with Active Rev Matching for more precise up and down shifts. The new Corvette Stingray takes advantage of lightweight materials, advanced manufacturing techniques and technology transfer from the Corvette Racing program to produce an ideal 50/50 weight balance and to deliver a world-class power-to-weight ratio. "Chevrolet has a long history of using racing to improve production cars, and nowhere is that more evident than with Corvette," said Jeuchter. "We continually apply technologies and strategies developed for Corvette Racing directly to the production car. That influence can be seen in virtually every aspect of the new Corvette Stingray, from the aerodynamic design to the use of carbon fiber, to the cooling techniques and even in the brake system The technologically advanced foundation is an all-new aluminum frame structure that is 57 percent stiffer and 99 pounds (45 kg) lighter. The greater torsional rigidity reduces unwanted noise and improves ride and handling. Compared to the previous generation, which used continuous hydroformed main frame rails with a constant 2mm wall thickness, the new Corvette's frame features main rails composed of five customized aluminum segments, including aluminum extrusions at each end, a center main rail section and hollow-cast nodes at the suspension interface points. Each segment is tuned – varying in thickness from 2mm to 11mm – tailoring the gauge, shape and strength properties to optimize the requirements for each frame section with minimal weight. The frame is assembled at an all-new welding shop at the Bowling Green Assembly Plant using a unique laser welding process in which a computer-controlled beam of high energy joins the components with exceptional precision and tolerances of about 0.001-inch. Supporting the frame's greater strength and lower weight are complementing chassis elements, including hollow-cast aluminum front and rear cradles that are approximately 25-percent lighter and 20-percent stiffer than the solid cradles used on the previous structure. The innovative use of materials includes a standard carbon fiber hood and roof panel, as well as underbody panels created with carbon-nano composite technology, an advanced blend of traditional composite material and carbon fiber, which allows lighter underbody panels without a loss of strength or stiffness. Fenders, doors, rear quarter panels and the rear hatch panel are made with lighter-density Sheet Molded Compound than the previous generation. Combined, these materials save approximately 37 pounds (17 kg) versus the previous body structure. The lightweight elements of the Stingray contribute to the ideal 50/50 weight balance. Combined with its estimated 450 horsepower (335 kW), the new Corvette delivers a better power-to-weight ratio than the Porsche 911 Carrera or Audi R8. Those 450 horses are generated by an all-new LT1 6.2L Small Block V-8 engine, which produces an estimated 450 lb.-ft. of torque (610 Nm). More importantly, it generates 50 lb.-ft. more low-end torque than the previous 6.2L engine, matching the 7.0L LS7 engine from the 2013 Corvette Z06 from 1,000 to 4,000 rpm. The engine's performance comes from combining advanced technologies like direct injection, Active Fuel Management and continuously variable valve timing with an advanced combustion system. More than 10 million hours of computational analysis went into the new Small Block's design, including more than 6 million hours alone on the combustion system. The LT1 is backed by a choice of active exhaust systems that are less restrictive than the previous generation, due in part to an increase in diameter from 2.5 inches to 2.75 inches. The standard system offers a 13-percent improvement in airflow and features a pair of butterfly valves that contribute to greater refinement at cruising speeds when the engine is operating in fuel-saving V-4 mode. An available dual-mode active exhaust system offers a 27-percent improvement in airflow. It features two additional valves that open to a lower-restriction path through the mufflers. When open, these valves increase engine performance and produce a more powerful exhaust note. The LT1 is mated to either a six-speed paddle-shift automatic transmission or an industry-exclusive TREMEC TR6070 seven-speed manual with Active Rev Matching. The Corvette retains its distinctive rear transaxle layout for optimal weight balance. The seven-speed manual incorporates rev-matching technology for upshifts and downshifts. This driver-selectable feature can be easily engaged or disengaged via paddles on the steering wheel. The seven-speed is used with a new dual-mass flywheel and dual-disc clutch, which deliver greater shift quality and feel through lower inertia. The transmission with the Z51 Performance Package includes specific close-ratio gearing for more aggressive driving. "Active Rev Matching makes the new Corvette easier and more fun to drive in performance conditions," said Jeuchter. "It anticipates the next gear selection and electronically 'blips' the throttle to match engine speed for a seamless gear change." A six-speed Hydra-Matic 6L80 paddle-shift automatic is also available. It is optimized for use with Active Fuel Management and features a lower-inertia torque converter for improved shift quality and shift speeds. In addition, shift feel and shift points can be adjusted through the Driver Mode Selector. More direct, more connected driving feel • Third-generation Magnetic Ride Control for greater comfort and control • Electric power steering system tailors steering response and feel • Electronic limited-slip differential delivers optimal traction The new Corvette Stingray's chassis and suspension are designed to take advantage of the lighter, stiffer structure. The reduced structural flex allowed engineers to more precisely tune the suspension and steering for a more nimble and responsive driving experience. "An important goal for the seventh-generation Corvette was to create a more intimate and connected driving experience, said Mike Bailey, chassis vehicle system engineer. "Whether on the open road or on the track, we wanted drivers to feel comfortable and confident behind the wheel." While the Corvette Stingray retains the racing-proven short/long-arm suspension design, front and rear, the components are all-new. Improvements to the suspension include hollow lower control arms which save approximately nine pounds (4 kg) per vehicle and new aluminum rear toe links which save 2.4 pounds (1.1 kg) over previous steel links. The Corvette Stingray rides on new 18 x 8.5-inch front and 19 x 10-inch rear wheels, while models with the Z51 Performance Package roll on 19 x 8.5-inch front and 20 x 10-inch rear forged aluminum wheels. New Michelin Pilot Super Sport run-flat tires developed specifically for the seventh-generation Corvette deliver comparable levels of grip than the wider tires of previous models. As a result, the track-oriented Corvette Stingray with the Z51 Performance Package is capable of 1g in cornering acceleration – comparable to the 2013 Corvette Grand Sport. Significantly, that is achieved with narrower and lighter wheels and tires. The reduced "footprint" reduces rolling resistance, steering effort and road noise, contributing to a more nimble feel, more immediate steering response and greater touring comfort and efficiency. Dimensionally, the new Corvette's wheelbase is approximately an inch longer than the previous generation, with front and rear tracks that are almost an inch wider. Those changes provide a more stable feel, particularly at high speeds, while the turning radius is decreased by approximately two feet for greater maneuverability in tight turns. The Corvette Stingray features standard 35mm-piston Bilstein monotube shocks that connect to dual-path aluminum shock mounts that separate the shock rod and shock body load paths. The Z51 Performance Package comes with 45mm-piston Bilstein dampers for more aggressive body control and track capability. Z51 is available with the third-generation Magnetic Ride Control, which features a new twin-wire/dual-coil damper system that reacts 40 percent faster, enabling improved ride comfort and body control. The new electric power steering system offers variable ratios and variable effort to tailor responsiveness and feel for each driving situation. It also delivers more precise control and feedback to the driver, along with greater variability of effort for high-performance driving and greater on-center sensitivity and linearity. Steering feel was further improved by increasing steering column stiffness by 150 percent, increasing intermediate shaft torsional stiffness by 600 percent, and mounting the steering gear to the front cradle structure. As a result the steering system is five times stiffer than the previous generation. A smart electronic limited-slip differential (eLSD) is included in the Z51 Performance Package and continuously makes the most of the torque split between the rear wheels. The system features a hydraulically actuated clutch that can infinitely vary clutch engagement and can respond from open to full engagement in tenths of a second. It shifts torque based on a unique algorithm which factors in vehicle speed, steering input and throttle position to improve steering feel, handling balance and traction. "The electronic limited-slip differential transforms the Stingray by optimizing handling for the driving situation," said Mike Bailey, vehicle systems engineer, chassis. "By continuously modulating the torque split between the rear wheels, the eLSD can improve traction accelerating out of corner, improve stability on the highway and enhance steering turn-in and responsiveness." The eLSD is fully integrated with StabiliTrak and Performance Traction Management systems. Its calibrations vary among three modes, based on the Drive Mode Selector setting: • Mode 1 is the default setting for normal driving and emphasizes vehicle stability • Mode 2 is engaged when electronic stability control is turned off in the Sport or Track Driver Modes. This calibration enables more nimble turn-in and traction while accelerating out of a corner • Mode 3 is automatically selected when Performance Traction Management is engaged. This calibration has the same function as Mode 2, but is fine-tuned to work with Performance Traction Management. Standard Brembo brakes, with four-piston fixed calipers derived from racing, deliver exceptional stopping power on the street or track. System highlights include: • 12.6-inch (320 mm) front rotors and 13.3-inch (338 mm) rear rotors are standard and have 35 percent more swept area than previous-generation brakes. Consequently stopping distance is improved 9 percent • Dual-cast, slotted 13.6-inch (345 mm) front rotors and 13.3-inch (338 mm) slotted rear rotors are included with Z51 Performance Package. They have 6percent more swept area than the previous-generation Grand Sport and are cooled front and rear for improved track capability. Consequently stopping distance is improved 5 percent • All brake packages have fixed front and rear calipers are stiffer for more even pad wear, reduced drag and improved modulation. View full article
  16. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 5, 2013 This is how I think a conversation would go with someone about the 2013 Kia Sorento SX V6 I had in for review. “Hey William.” “Hey.” “So what are you reviewing this week?” “The 2013 Kia Sorento SX V6.” “Didn’t Kia introduce a refreshed Sorento?” “Yes at the LA Auto Show. It will be a 2014 model coming out sometime in the first quarter of 2013.” “Why are you reviewing the 2013 model if the 2014 model is coming soon?” “Well for two reasons. One: I have a point of comparison when I get the chance to check out the 2014 model. Two: I want to see if a person should wait to get the 2014 model or go ahead with the 2013 model.” “Ahh.” Shall we dive in? Since its introduction in 2009 as a 2011 model, the second-generation Kia Sorento’s design really hasn’t changed much. The front end features Kia’s signature grille and a set of unique headlights. The side profile has deeply chiseled door panels and windows that are pushed somewhat into the body. On the SX model you gain painted front and rear bumpers, a rear spoiler, and a set of eighteen-inch wheels to give it a very dramatic look. Inside the Sorento feels older than it should. Blame the hard plastics and some of equipment used up front, most notably the climate control system. Aside from this, the interior features very good build quality. Front and second row passengers will feel very comfortable thanks to the very good amount of head and legroom, and adjustments provided. The third row is best left for small kids or folded flat since that expands cargo room from a meager 9.1 cubic feet to 37 cubic feet of space. Equipment is very generous on the Sorento SX. Starting at $33,400, the SX model includes leather seats for all three rows, heated front seats, push-button start, rear ventilation, an Infinity sound system, USB and Aux jack, and Bluetooth as standard equipment. My test Sorento SX also came equipped with the Premium package which adds such items as navigation, heated steering wheel, a memory function for the driver’s seat and mirrors, and a panoramic sunroof. For the extra $3,200 the package adds onto the Sorento SX’s price tag, I find it to be a very good value since models from competitors would cost somewhat more to come close to matching the SX’s equipment level. The 2013 Sorento comes with three different engine choices. The base LX model gets a 2.4L four-cylinder engine. There is also a 2.4L four-cylinder with direct injection that is available on the LX and standard on the EX. Lastly, there is a 3.5L V6 that’s standard on the SX and optional on the LX and EX. The 3.5L V6 produces 276 horsepower and 248 pound-feet of torque. The power is fed through a six-speed automatic down to either the front wheels or optional all-wheel drive system. The V6 packs quite the punch for any situation you encounter. Whether its to merge onto a freeway or leaving a stop, the V6’s power is immediate and smooth. More surprisingly was how quiet the V6 engine was. The only way you knew the engine was doing anything besides dropping the hammer was watching the rev counter. The six-speed automatic was very smooth and quick to downshift at a moments notice. My only real disappointment with V6 was fuel economy. The EPA rates the Sorento SX V6 with AWD at 18 City/24 Highway/20 combined. During my week, I got an average of 20.5 MPG. However when I was driving the Sorento in the city, I saw my average MPG drop to around 15.8 MPG. If you’re planning to drive a lot in the city, you should consider the four-cylinder. The Sorento’s AWD system is a full-time unit that features a locking center differential. I found the system to be very capable when driving through the aftermath of a snowstorm. The system provided enough traction to get and keep the vehicle on the move, even in some unplowed roads. One oddity in the Sorento SX was a hill descent control system. Hill descent control uses the ABS to control each wheel's speed to get down a hill in rough terrain at a very slow speed. I’m not quite sure how many Sorento owners will utilize this feature, but it's there if you need it. The Sorento SX’s ride and drive can be best explained in three (or four) words; quiet and mostly comfortable. The suspension is tuned for comfort which provides a very smooth and stable ride. Steering is perfectly weighted for the intended application and is surprisingly quick to respond. Driving on the highway, the Sorento exhibits barely any noise from the suspension or the road, making this a very relaxing highway cruiser. The 2013 Kia Sorento SX with AWD starts $33,400.00. Add a few options and destination and you're looking at $37,575.00, the price of my tester. Now some people will argue that seems a bit much for a seven-seat crossover. However I would rebut that for price, the Sorento SX brings forth a number of features that the competition either doesn't have or you would need to tick a few more option boxes to come close. If you were to ask me before the showing of the 2014 Sorento would I recommend the current Sorento, the answer is yes. The 2013 Kia Sorento SX is a very capable and value oriented crossover; providing a good mix of looks, equipment, power, and comfort in one package. But with the 2014 Sorento around the corner, I would say wait and see. The 2014 model brings forth a number of improvements, including a new 3.3L V6 and a more modern interior. Disclaimer: Kia provided the vehicle, insurance, and one tank of gasoline. Album: 2013 Kia Sorento SX 21 images 0 comments Year - 2013 Make – Kia Model – Sorento Trim – SX AWD Engine – 3.5L DOHC CVVT V6 Driveline – All-Wheel Drive with Locking Center Differential, Six-Speed Automatic Transmission Horsepower @ RPM – 276 (@ 6,300 RPM) Torque @ RPM – 248 (@ 5,000 RPM) Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 18/24/20 Curb Weight – 3,935 lbs Location of Manufacture – West Point, Georgia Base Price - $33,400.00 (SX with AWD) As Tested Price - $37,575.00 (Includes $800.00 Destination Charge) Options: Premium Package 3 - $3,200.00 Cargo Cover - $125.00 Cargo Net - $50.00 William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. View full article
  17. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 5, 2013 This is how I think a conversation would go with someone about the 2013 Kia Sorento SX V6 I had in for review. “Hey William.” “Hey.” “So what are you reviewing this week?” “The 2013 Kia Sorento SX V6.” “Didn’t Kia introduce a refreshed Sorento?” “Yes at the LA Auto Show. It will be a 2014 model coming out sometime in the first quarter of 2013.” “Why are you reviewing the 2013 model if the 2014 model is coming soon?” “Well for two reasons. One: I have a point of comparison when I get the chance to check out the 2014 model. Two: I want to see if a person should wait to get the 2014 model or go ahead with the 2013 model.” “Ahh.” Shall we dive in? Since its introduction in 2009 as a 2011 model, the second-generation Kia Sorento’s design really hasn’t changed much. The front end features Kia’s signature grille and a set of unique headlights. The side profile has deeply chiseled door panels and windows that are pushed somewhat into the body. On the SX model you gain painted front and rear bumpers, a rear spoiler, and a set of eighteen-inch wheels to give it a very dramatic look. Inside the Sorento feels older than it should. Blame the hard plastics and some of equipment used up front, most notably the climate control system. Aside from this, the interior features very good build quality. Front and second row passengers will feel very comfortable thanks to the very good amount of head and legroom, and adjustments provided. The third row is best left for small kids or folded flat since that expands cargo room from a meager 9.1 cubic feet to 37 cubic feet of space. Equipment is very generous on the Sorento SX. Starting at $33,400, the SX model includes leather seats for all three rows, heated front seats, push-button start, rear ventilation, an Infinity sound system, USB and Aux jack, and Bluetooth as standard equipment. My test Sorento SX also came equipped with the Premium package which adds such items as navigation, heated steering wheel, a memory function for the driver’s seat and mirrors, and a panoramic sunroof. For the extra $3,200 the package adds onto the Sorento SX’s price tag, I find it to be a very good value since models from competitors would cost somewhat more to come close to matching the SX’s equipment level. The 2013 Sorento comes with three different engine choices. The base LX model gets a 2.4L four-cylinder engine. There is also a 2.4L four-cylinder with direct injection that is available on the LX and standard on the EX. Lastly, there is a 3.5L V6 that’s standard on the SX and optional on the LX and EX. The 3.5L V6 produces 276 horsepower and 248 pound-feet of torque. The power is fed through a six-speed automatic down to either the front wheels or optional all-wheel drive system. The V6 packs quite the punch for any situation you encounter. Whether its to merge onto a freeway or leaving a stop, the V6’s power is immediate and smooth. More surprisingly was how quiet the V6 engine was. The only way you knew the engine was doing anything besides dropping the hammer was watching the rev counter. The six-speed automatic was very smooth and quick to downshift at a moments notice. My only real disappointment with V6 was fuel economy. The EPA rates the Sorento SX V6 with AWD at 18 City/24 Highway/20 combined. During my week, I got an average of 20.5 MPG. However when I was driving the Sorento in the city, I saw my average MPG drop to around 15.8 MPG. If you’re planning to drive a lot in the city, you should consider the four-cylinder. The Sorento’s AWD system is a full-time unit that features a locking center differential. I found the system to be very capable when driving through the aftermath of a snowstorm. The system provided enough traction to get and keep the vehicle on the move, even in some unplowed roads. One oddity in the Sorento SX was a hill descent control system. Hill descent control uses the ABS to control each wheel's speed to get down a hill in rough terrain at a very slow speed. I’m not quite sure how many Sorento owners will utilize this feature, but it's there if you need it. The Sorento SX’s ride and drive can be best explained in three (or four) words; quiet and mostly comfortable. The suspension is tuned for comfort which provides a very smooth and stable ride. Steering is perfectly weighted for the intended application and is surprisingly quick to respond. Driving on the highway, the Sorento exhibits barely any noise from the suspension or the road, making this a very relaxing highway cruiser. The 2013 Kia Sorento SX with AWD starts $33,400.00. Add a few options and destination and you're looking at $37,575.00, the price of my tester. Now some people will argue that seems a bit much for a seven-seat crossover. However I would rebut that for price, the Sorento SX brings forth a number of features that the competition either doesn't have or you would need to tick a few more option boxes to come close. If you were to ask me before the showing of the 2014 Sorento would I recommend the current Sorento, the answer is yes. The 2013 Kia Sorento SX is a very capable and value oriented crossover; providing a good mix of looks, equipment, power, and comfort in one package. But with the 2014 Sorento around the corner, I would say wait and see. The 2014 model brings forth a number of improvements, including a new 3.3L V6 and a more modern interior. Disclaimer: Kia provided the vehicle, insurance, and one tank of gasoline. Album: 2013 Kia Sorento SX 21 images 0 comments Year - 2013 Make – Kia Model – Sorento Trim – SX AWD Engine – 3.5L DOHC CVVT V6 Driveline – All-Wheel Drive with Locking Center Differential, Six-Speed Automatic Transmission Horsepower @ RPM – 276 (@ 6,300 RPM) Torque @ RPM – 248 (@ 5,000 RPM) Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 18/24/20 Curb Weight – 3,935 lbs Location of Manufacture – West Point, Georgia Base Price - $33,400.00 (SX with AWD) As Tested Price - $37,575.00 (Includes $800.00 Destination Charge) Options: Premium Package 3 - $3,200.00 Cargo Cover - $125.00 Cargo Net - $50.00 William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
  18. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 4, 2013 Besides the Challenger R/T Redline package, Chrysler will also being showing the new and limited edition Mopar 13' Dart at the Chicago Auto Show this week. The Mopar 13' Dart is the forth special-edition, Mopar-badged model since Chrysler became part of Fiat in 2009. The Mopar 13' Dart's exterior is decked out in gloss black paint with contrasting Mopar Blue racing stripes. The exterior also benefits from a ground effects kit that includes a front lip, one-piece trunk spoiler, and rear diffuser. Inside, the Mopar Dart has a Mopar Blue leather seat with contrasting black accents for the driver, and black leather with blue accent stitching for the rest of interior. Under the hood there is a 1.4L MultiAir turbocharged engine mated to a six-speed manual transmission. Mopar fitted a sport-tuned exhaust system to give a more meatier noise. Other changes include a sport suspension kit, premium brake kit with slotted rotors, and a revised steering calibration. Only 500 Mopar 13' Darts will be built. No information on pricing or a release date has been announced. Source: Chrysler Album: Mopar 13' Dart 5 images 0 comments William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 Chrysler Group LLC Introduces New Mopar ’13 Dodge Dart Select Mopar parts and accessories outfit new Mopar ’13 Dart Performance upgrades include lowered sport suspension, revised steering calibration, sport-tuned exhaust, ground-effects kit, and premium brake kit with slotted rotors Custom leather Mopar driver’s seat Industry-first wireless charging for smartphones 500 numbered units to be built at company’s assembly plant in Belvidere, Ill. Limited-edition vehicle to be displayed at Chicago Auto Show Mopar ’13 information to go live at http://www.dodge.com/en/2013//dart-mopar13/ tomorrow, Friday, Feb. 1 Auburn Hills, Mich. , Jan 31, 2013 - Chrysler Group LLC today introduced the limited-edition Mopar ’13 Dart, marking the fourth special-edition Mopar-badged vehicle created since the company partnered with Fiat S.p.A in 2009. The car will be shown at next week’s Chicago Auto Show. Building on the success of the Mopar ’10 Challenger, Mopar ’11 Charger and the Mopar ’12 300, the limited-edition Mopar ’13 Dart will be built and customized with Mopar performance parts and accessories. Production for a limited run of 500 units will begin this spring at the company’s assembly plant in Belvidere, Ill. “Our new Mopar ’13 Dart will turn heads and stand out from the crowd,” said Pietro Gorlier, President and CEO of Mopar, Chrysler Group’s service, parts and customer-care brand. “For this special, limited-edition vehicle, we specifically kept the driver in mind as we added select Mopar parts and accessories.” Inspired by the tuner scene, the Mopar ’13 Dart is designed for driving enthusiasts. Powered by a 1.4-liter MultiAir® intercooled turbo engine with a manual transmission, the Mopar ’13 sports a gloss-black finish with a pair of car-length Mopar Blue stripes, which mirror each of the three previous Mopar-themed models. For enhanced handling, upgrades include a performance steering-gear calibration, a 7 millimeter-lowered suspension and low-profile 40 aspect performance tires (225/40R18). From the racing scene, Mopar added a premium brake kit with slotted rotors. Engine breathing is enhanced with a performance-tuned exhaust and to further optimize aerodynamics and increase downforce, the custom Dart features Mopar’s ground-effects kit, which includes a front-chin spoiler, one-piece deck-lid spoiler, as well as a unique and aggressively styled rear diffuser. Unique exterior elements include a Mopar badge in the crosshair grille and gloss-black 18-inch wheels with a Mopar logo on the wheel center caps. The vehicle’s unique interior, featuring a serialized plate, gives the driver a custom Mopar Blue leather seat with black accents. To keep the emphasis on the driver, the driver seat is Mopar Blue while all other seats are black with blue accent stitching. The centerpiece of the interior is a floating island bezel that is accented with Mopar Blue paint and lighting. The interior is further enhanced with rich details, including Mopar Blue accent thread, as well as light-black chrome and gloss-black elements. Along with a Mopar serialized badge on the dash, the special-edition Mopar ’13 includes industry-first wireless charging for smartphones, a blue-stitched leather-wrapped steering wheel with an identically garnished shifter knob, a bright sport-pedal kit, premium Mopar carpet floor mats, door-sill guards and an 8.4-inch navigation screen. The limited-edition Mopar ’13 Dart will be delivered to each customer with a personalized owner kit. Assembled in a custom-made black case, contents include a personalized plate with vehicle specifications, the date of manufacture and the unique identification number (of 500) of the vehicle. Along with a Mopar ’13 brochure and other memorabilia, the kit will include a limited-edition sketch of the vehicle signed by Mark Trostle, Chrysler Group Chief Designer for the Mopar Brand. Information on the Mopar ’13 will be go live at http://www.dodge.com/en/2013//dart-mopar13/ tomorrow, Friday, Feb. 1 View full article
  19. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 4, 2013 Besides the Challenger R/T Redline package, Chrysler will also being showing the new and limited edition Mopar 13' Dart at the Chicago Auto Show this week. The Mopar 13' Dart is the forth special-edition, Mopar-badged model since Chrysler became part of Fiat in 2009. The Mopar 13' Dart's exterior is decked out in gloss black paint with contrasting Mopar Blue racing stripes. The exterior also benefits from a ground effects kit that includes a front lip, one-piece trunk spoiler, and rear diffuser. Inside, the Mopar Dart has a Mopar Blue leather seat with contrasting black accents for the driver, and black leather with blue accent stitching for the rest of interior. Under the hood there is a 1.4L MultiAir turbocharged engine mated to a six-speed manual transmission. Mopar fitted a sport-tuned exhaust system to give a more meatier noise. Other changes include a sport suspension kit, premium brake kit with slotted rotors, and a revised steering calibration. Only 500 Mopar 13' Darts will be built. No information on pricing or a release date has been announced. Source: Chrysler Album: Mopar 13' Dart 5 images 0 comments William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 Chrysler Group LLC Introduces New Mopar ’13 Dodge Dart Select Mopar parts and accessories outfit new Mopar ’13 Dart Performance upgrades include lowered sport suspension, revised steering calibration, sport-tuned exhaust, ground-effects kit, and premium brake kit with slotted rotors Custom leather Mopar driver’s seat Industry-first wireless charging for smartphones 500 numbered units to be built at company’s assembly plant in Belvidere, Ill. Limited-edition vehicle to be displayed at Chicago Auto Show Mopar ’13 information to go live at http://www.dodge.com/en/2013//dart-mopar13/ tomorrow, Friday, Feb. 1 Auburn Hills, Mich. , Jan 31, 2013 - Chrysler Group LLC today introduced the limited-edition Mopar ’13 Dart, marking the fourth special-edition Mopar-badged vehicle created since the company partnered with Fiat S.p.A in 2009. The car will be shown at next week’s Chicago Auto Show. Building on the success of the Mopar ’10 Challenger, Mopar ’11 Charger and the Mopar ’12 300, the limited-edition Mopar ’13 Dart will be built and customized with Mopar performance parts and accessories. Production for a limited run of 500 units will begin this spring at the company’s assembly plant in Belvidere, Ill. “Our new Mopar ’13 Dart will turn heads and stand out from the crowd,” said Pietro Gorlier, President and CEO of Mopar, Chrysler Group’s service, parts and customer-care brand. “For this special, limited-edition vehicle, we specifically kept the driver in mind as we added select Mopar parts and accessories.” Inspired by the tuner scene, the Mopar ’13 Dart is designed for driving enthusiasts. Powered by a 1.4-liter MultiAir® intercooled turbo engine with a manual transmission, the Mopar ’13 sports a gloss-black finish with a pair of car-length Mopar Blue stripes, which mirror each of the three previous Mopar-themed models. For enhanced handling, upgrades include a performance steering-gear calibration, a 7 millimeter-lowered suspension and low-profile 40 aspect performance tires (225/40R18). From the racing scene, Mopar added a premium brake kit with slotted rotors. Engine breathing is enhanced with a performance-tuned exhaust and to further optimize aerodynamics and increase downforce, the custom Dart features Mopar’s ground-effects kit, which includes a front-chin spoiler, one-piece deck-lid spoiler, as well as a unique and aggressively styled rear diffuser. Unique exterior elements include a Mopar badge in the crosshair grille and gloss-black 18-inch wheels with a Mopar logo on the wheel center caps. The vehicle’s unique interior, featuring a serialized plate, gives the driver a custom Mopar Blue leather seat with black accents. To keep the emphasis on the driver, the driver seat is Mopar Blue while all other seats are black with blue accent stitching. The centerpiece of the interior is a floating island bezel that is accented with Mopar Blue paint and lighting. The interior is further enhanced with rich details, including Mopar Blue accent thread, as well as light-black chrome and gloss-black elements. Along with a Mopar serialized badge on the dash, the special-edition Mopar ’13 includes industry-first wireless charging for smartphones, a blue-stitched leather-wrapped steering wheel with an identically garnished shifter knob, a bright sport-pedal kit, premium Mopar carpet floor mats, door-sill guards and an 8.4-inch navigation screen. The limited-edition Mopar ’13 Dart will be delivered to each customer with a personalized owner kit. Assembled in a custom-made black case, contents include a personalized plate with vehicle specifications, the date of manufacture and the unique identification number (of 500) of the vehicle. Along with a Mopar ’13 brochure and other memorabilia, the kit will include a limited-edition sketch of the vehicle signed by Mark Trostle, Chrysler Group Chief Designer for the Mopar Brand. Information on the Mopar ’13 will be go live at http://www.dodge.com/en/2013//dart-mopar13/ tomorrow, Friday, Feb. 1
  20. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 3, 2013 If you wanted a more powerful C63 AMG, but think the Black Series version is a bit unlivable, Mercedes-Benz might have the vehicle for you. To be introduced at the Geneva Motor Show in March, the 2014 C63 AMG 507 Edition provides performance and styling upgrades to the C63 AMG lineup. That's right, you can get the 507 Edition the sedan, coupe, or if you live outside of North America, a wagon. Starting with the engine, Mercedes-Benz was able to squeeze out more power from the 6.2L V8 by adding forged pistons, new connecting rods, a lighter crankshaft, and a remapped engine controller. Horsepower is now at 507 (up from 451) and torque is at 450 pound-feet (up from 443). All of that power goes through AMG’s seven-speed transmission. Other performance upgrades include a braking system with six-piston calipers up front and four-piston clampers in the back. There is also a set of nineteen-inch, lightweight alloy wheels. Visual changes for the C63 AMG 507 Edition include a vented hood from the Black Series, AMG stripes on the rocker panels, and black accents on the grille, rear spoiler, and mirrors. Inside, there is a Alcantara wrapped steering wheel, red accents in the gauge cluster, piano black accents throughout the cabin, and "Edition 507" badge. The C63 AMG 507 Edition arrives at Mercedes-Benz dealers in the summer. Source: Mercedes-Benz Album: 2014 Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Edition 507 9 images 0 comments William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 Mercedes-Benz Introduces An Even More Aggressive C63 AMG MONTVALE, NJ – The C63 AMG models are becoming even more aggressive with the addition of a newly developed "Edition 507". The output of the AMG 6.3 liter V8 engine has been increased by 56 hp, bringing the output to 507 hp with 450 lb.-ft. of torque. The model year 2014 C63 AMG "Edition 507" uses much of the same technology as the SLS AMG: the eight-cylinder naturally aspirated engine features forged pistons, connecting rods and a lightweight crankshaft as seen on the super sports car. An AMG high-performance compound constuction braking system with red brake calipers is fitted as standard. The C63 AMG "Edition 507" will be available in the Summer of 2013 and is designed to appeal to ambitious drivers who take pleasure in best-in-class technology as well as exclusive design and sporty handling. The C63 AMG "Edition 507" coupe and sedan produces 507 hp and accelerates from 0-60 in 4.1 seconds. This new model outperforms the existing 451 hp C63 model by three-tenths of a second, and the variants with the AMG Development Package which produce 481 hp by two-tenths of a second. In addition to an increase in top speed to 174 mph, the "Edition 507" also includes a voucher for a driver training session at the AMG Driving Academy. According to Ola Källenius, Chairman of the Board of Management of Mercedes-AMG GmbH: "The C 63 AMG with the classic AMG 6.3-litre high-revving V8 naturally aspirated engine is one of the most popular AMG high-performance cars in the world. With the new C 63 AMG "Edition 507", we are offering our loyal customers an attractive model variant which boasts even higher performance and at the same time is visually exciting." Preliminary Technical Data: C63 AMG C63 AMG "Edition 507" "Edition 507" Sedan Coupe Displacement 6208 cc 6208 cc Power output 507 hp at 6800 rpm 507 hp at 6800 rpm Max. torque 450 lb.-ft at 5200 rpm 450 lb.-ft at 5200 rpm Acceleration 0-60 mph 4.1 s 4.1 s Top speed 174 mph 174 mph C63 AMG "Edition 507" featuring technology from the SLS AMG The increase in power output to 507 hp at 6800 rpm comes courtesy of the modified inner workings of the AMG 6.3-liter V8 engine. The forged pistons adopted from the SLS AMG, together with new connecting rods and a lightweight crankshaft, translate into a weight saving of 6.6 lbs. The reduction of rotational mass inertia improves the agility of the eight-cylinder M156 naturally aspirated engine. The maximum torque has also increased by 7 lb.-ft., jumping from 443 lb.-ft. to 450 lb.-ft. at 5200 rpm. The titanium grey-painted variable intake manifold is a characteristic feature of the uprated V8 engine. A new engine control system rounds off the series of implemented powertrain measures. The exterior of the C63 AMG "Edition 507" is characterized by exclusive new design features. Most notable of the features is the hood – it originates from the C63 AMG Coupe Black Series. Two openings in the distinctive aluminium hood help with expelling engine heat. Newly designed AMG light-alloy forged wheels with 235/35 R 19 front tires and 255/30 R 19 rear tires are another exclusive feature of the "Edition 507". The AMG light-alloy wheels are produced using lightweight forging technology and are available in two variants: titanium grey with a high-sheen finish, or matte black with highsheen rim flanges. An AMG sports stripe applique in matte graphite grey have been located above the rocker panels and are yet another new feature of the exterior. The spoiler lip on the trunk lid, the exterior mirror housings as well as the surrounds on the radiator grille and daytime running lights are all finished in high-gloss black. Available as an option for the C63 AMG "Edition 507" is an exclusive designo magno platinum matte finish paint. AMG high-performance braking system featuring compound technology As standard, the C63 AMG "Edition 507" comes with an even more powerful AMG high-performance braking system featuring compound construction technology. The front axle makes use of compound brake discs measuring 14.2 in. x 1.4 in. The advantages of the compound design include higher fatigue strength and lower warping characteristics. In addition, compound construction discs are lighter in weight and the reduced unsprung masses improve the response of the spring/damping elements. With compound construction, the brake discs are connected to an aluminium bowl via eight cast bracket arms. The brake discs are ventilated and perforated all around and are decelerated by means of 6-piston aluminium fixed calipers on the front axle and 4-piston fixed calipers on the rear axle. The brake callipers are painted red as standard fitment. "Edition 507" interior: even more dynamic and exclusive The sporty yet functional interior of the C63 AMG is even more dynamic and exclusive in the case of the "Edition 507". Three different equipment and options are available to choose from: porcelain designo leather/DINAMICA, black designo leather/DINAMICA and black designo leather. In the case of the designo leather/DINAMICA upholstery, light-colored contrast stitching makes for an attractive highlight. The AMG Performance steering wheel in Alcantara® with light-colored contrasting stitching has a 12-o'clock marking. The gear selector lever of the AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sports transmission is finished in DINAMICA and features an AMG badge. The steering wheel and gear selector lever gaiter also have light-colored contrast stitching. In the AMG instrument cluster, red applications to the dials serve to visually differentiate this variant from the other C63 AMG models. The trim is done in high-gloss black piano lacquer and the "Edition 507" badge on the trim on the front passenger side round off the high-quality, exclusive interior. Optional extras include: - AMG illuminated door rocker panels - AMG rear axle locking differential - AMG 5-spoke light-alloy forged wheels, painted in titanium grey and with a high-sheen finish, with tires in sizes 235/40 R 18 (front) and 255/35 R 18 (rear) - AMG Performance Media - AMG carbon-fiber/high gloss black piano lacquer-look trim - Exterior designo magno platinum matte finish paint; four other exterior paint colors will be available from the existing C63 AMG palette. The C63 AMG "Edition 507" will be celebrating its world premiere at the Geneva Motor Show, which will be opening its doors on March 5, 2013. The model's sales and market launch in the U.S. is planned for the Summer of 2013. Pricing will be announced closer to the market launch. The C63 AMG "Editon 507" coupe and sedan replace the existing AMG Development Package for MY2014, and will be sold in the U.S. in addition to the existing C63 AMG coupe and sedan with 451 hp. View full article
  21. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 3, 2013 If you wanted a more powerful C63 AMG, but think the Black Series version is a bit unlivable, Mercedes-Benz might have the vehicle for you. To be introduced at the Geneva Motor Show in March, the 2014 C63 AMG 507 Edition provides performance and styling upgrades to the C63 AMG lineup. That's right, you can get the 507 Edition the sedan, coupe, or if you live outside of North America, a wagon. Starting with the engine, Mercedes-Benz was able to squeeze out more power from the 6.2L V8 by adding forged pistons, new connecting rods, a lighter crankshaft, and a remapped engine controller. Horsepower is now at 507 (up from 451) and torque is at 450 pound-feet (up from 443). All of that power goes through AMG’s seven-speed transmission. Other performance upgrades include a braking system with six-piston calipers up front and four-piston clampers in the back. There is also a set of nineteen-inch, lightweight alloy wheels. Visual changes for the C63 AMG 507 Edition include a vented hood from the Black Series, AMG stripes on the rocker panels, and black accents on the grille, rear spoiler, and mirrors. Inside, there is a Alcantara wrapped steering wheel, red accents in the gauge cluster, piano black accents throughout the cabin, and "Edition 507" badge. The C63 AMG 507 Edition arrives at Mercedes-Benz dealers in the summer. Source: Mercedes-Benz Album: 2014 Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Edition 507 9 images 0 comments William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 Mercedes-Benz Introduces An Even More Aggressive C63 AMG MONTVALE, NJ – The C63 AMG models are becoming even more aggressive with the addition of a newly developed "Edition 507". The output of the AMG 6.3 liter V8 engine has been increased by 56 hp, bringing the output to 507 hp with 450 lb.-ft. of torque. The model year 2014 C63 AMG "Edition 507" uses much of the same technology as the SLS AMG: the eight-cylinder naturally aspirated engine features forged pistons, connecting rods and a lightweight crankshaft as seen on the super sports car. An AMG high-performance compound constuction braking system with red brake calipers is fitted as standard. The C63 AMG "Edition 507" will be available in the Summer of 2013 and is designed to appeal to ambitious drivers who take pleasure in best-in-class technology as well as exclusive design and sporty handling. The C63 AMG "Edition 507" coupe and sedan produces 507 hp and accelerates from 0-60 in 4.1 seconds. This new model outperforms the existing 451 hp C63 model by three-tenths of a second, and the variants with the AMG Development Package which produce 481 hp by two-tenths of a second. In addition to an increase in top speed to 174 mph, the "Edition 507" also includes a voucher for a driver training session at the AMG Driving Academy. According to Ola Källenius, Chairman of the Board of Management of Mercedes-AMG GmbH: "The C 63 AMG with the classic AMG 6.3-litre high-revving V8 naturally aspirated engine is one of the most popular AMG high-performance cars in the world. With the new C 63 AMG "Edition 507", we are offering our loyal customers an attractive model variant which boasts even higher performance and at the same time is visually exciting." Preliminary Technical Data: C63 AMG C63 AMG "Edition 507" "Edition 507" Sedan Coupe Displacement 6208 cc 6208 cc Power output 507 hp at 6800 rpm 507 hp at 6800 rpm Max. torque 450 lb.-ft at 5200 rpm 450 lb.-ft at 5200 rpm Acceleration 0-60 mph 4.1 s 4.1 s Top speed 174 mph 174 mph C63 AMG "Edition 507" featuring technology from the SLS AMG The increase in power output to 507 hp at 6800 rpm comes courtesy of the modified inner workings of the AMG 6.3-liter V8 engine. The forged pistons adopted from the SLS AMG, together with new connecting rods and a lightweight crankshaft, translate into a weight saving of 6.6 lbs. The reduction of rotational mass inertia improves the agility of the eight-cylinder M156 naturally aspirated engine. The maximum torque has also increased by 7 lb.-ft., jumping from 443 lb.-ft. to 450 lb.-ft. at 5200 rpm. The titanium grey-painted variable intake manifold is a characteristic feature of the uprated V8 engine. A new engine control system rounds off the series of implemented powertrain measures. The exterior of the C63 AMG "Edition 507" is characterized by exclusive new design features. Most notable of the features is the hood – it originates from the C63 AMG Coupe Black Series. Two openings in the distinctive aluminium hood help with expelling engine heat. Newly designed AMG light-alloy forged wheels with 235/35 R 19 front tires and 255/30 R 19 rear tires are another exclusive feature of the "Edition 507". The AMG light-alloy wheels are produced using lightweight forging technology and are available in two variants: titanium grey with a high-sheen finish, or matte black with highsheen rim flanges. An AMG sports stripe applique in matte graphite grey have been located above the rocker panels and are yet another new feature of the exterior. The spoiler lip on the trunk lid, the exterior mirror housings as well as the surrounds on the radiator grille and daytime running lights are all finished in high-gloss black. Available as an option for the C63 AMG "Edition 507" is an exclusive designo magno platinum matte finish paint. AMG high-performance braking system featuring compound technology As standard, the C63 AMG "Edition 507" comes with an even more powerful AMG high-performance braking system featuring compound construction technology. The front axle makes use of compound brake discs measuring 14.2 in. x 1.4 in. The advantages of the compound design include higher fatigue strength and lower warping characteristics. In addition, compound construction discs are lighter in weight and the reduced unsprung masses improve the response of the spring/damping elements. With compound construction, the brake discs are connected to an aluminium bowl via eight cast bracket arms. The brake discs are ventilated and perforated all around and are decelerated by means of 6-piston aluminium fixed calipers on the front axle and 4-piston fixed calipers on the rear axle. The brake callipers are painted red as standard fitment. "Edition 507" interior: even more dynamic and exclusive The sporty yet functional interior of the C63 AMG is even more dynamic and exclusive in the case of the "Edition 507". Three different equipment and options are available to choose from: porcelain designo leather/DINAMICA, black designo leather/DINAMICA and black designo leather. In the case of the designo leather/DINAMICA upholstery, light-colored contrast stitching makes for an attractive highlight. The AMG Performance steering wheel in Alcantara® with light-colored contrasting stitching has a 12-o'clock marking. The gear selector lever of the AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sports transmission is finished in DINAMICA and features an AMG badge. The steering wheel and gear selector lever gaiter also have light-colored contrast stitching. In the AMG instrument cluster, red applications to the dials serve to visually differentiate this variant from the other C63 AMG models. The trim is done in high-gloss black piano lacquer and the "Edition 507" badge on the trim on the front passenger side round off the high-quality, exclusive interior. Optional extras include: - AMG illuminated door rocker panels - AMG rear axle locking differential - AMG 5-spoke light-alloy forged wheels, painted in titanium grey and with a high-sheen finish, with tires in sizes 235/40 R 18 (front) and 255/35 R 18 (rear) - AMG Performance Media - AMG carbon-fiber/high gloss black piano lacquer-look trim - Exterior designo magno platinum matte finish paint; four other exterior paint colors will be available from the existing C63 AMG palette. The C63 AMG "Edition 507" will be celebrating its world premiere at the Geneva Motor Show, which will be opening its doors on March 5, 2013. The model's sales and market launch in the U.S. is planned for the Summer of 2013. Pricing will be announced closer to the market launch. The C63 AMG "Editon 507" coupe and sedan replace the existing AMG Development Package for MY2014, and will be sold in the U.S. in addition to the existing C63 AMG coupe and sedan with 451 hp.
  22. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 2, 2013 Last year, Dodge unveiled a new package for the Challenger SXT Plus called the Rallye Redline which added a list of visual, interior and handling changes. However some complained that the Challenger R/T model should have this package as well. Dodge has heard those calls and at next week’s Chicago Auto Show will show the 2013 Challenger R/T Redline. Much like the Rallye Redline, the R/T Redline gets twenty-inch black chrome wheels with red paint accents. However, the R/T Redline also gets side stripes with graphite graphics featuring Redline lettering to give it a more retro look. Under the hood, the R/T sticks with the 5.7L HEMI V8. When equipped with the six-speed manual, the 5.7L produces 375 horsepower and 410 pound-feet of torque thanks to a performance-tuned, low-restriction exhaust. Go with the five-speed automatic and the engine produces 372 horsepower and 400 pound-feet. The five-speed also gets a chrome Mopar t-handle shifter and paddle shifters on the steering wheel. The R/T Redline package will cost $1,995 and be available on the Challenger R/T ($32,985*) and R/T Plus ($34,985*). You can order a Challenger R/T with the R/T Redline package now and they will arrive in April. *Prices include $995 destination charge. Source: Dodge William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 New Dodge Challenger R/T Redline Delivers Red-hot Muscle Car Performance and Styling at the Ice-cold 2013 Chicago Auto Show New 2013 Dodge Challenger R/T Redline heats up the brand’s iconic muscle-car lineup with HEMI®-power, red-hot exterior accents and performance suspension Signature 20-inch Black Chrome wheels feature a Redline Red accented lip and backbone for a customized look Legendary 5.7-liter HEMI V-8 delivers up to 375 horsepower and 410 lb-ft torque through a track-proven six-speed manual transmission, or paddle-shifting and driver adaptable automatic transmission The 2013 Dodge Challenger R/T Redline Group will be available this spring on R/T and R/T Plus models at a tremendous value with starting U.S. Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of just $1,995 building off America’s most affordable V-8 muscle car February 1, 2013 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - While ice cold winter weather sweeps across Lake Shore Drive, the Dodge brand heats up the 2013 Chicago Auto Show by building on Challenger’s red-hot record selling year, and now at the show, the introduction of the new Challenger R/T Redline with modern muscle-car cues, a potent HEMI® V-8 engine throwing down 375 horsepower and a performance-tuned chassis for world-class dynamics — this new Challenger delivers exactly what Dodge fans want. “Building on Challenger’s all-time sales record in 2012, the new Challenger R/T Redline fuses our iconic heritage with a one-of-a-kind customized appearance,” said Reid Bigland, President and CEO – Dodge Brand. “Featuring unique body-side stripes and black chrome wheels with red accents, the new R/T Redline combines unmatched personalization with the unmistakable performance of the legendary HEMI V-8.” The new 2013 Dodge Challenger R/T Redline builds on the success of the 305 horsepower V-6 Challenger Rallye Redline model that arrived in the middle of the 2012 model year. 2013 Dodge Challenger R/T Redline Based on the 2013 Dodge Challenger R/T — America’s most affordable V-8 muscle car at $29,995 MSRP — or R/T Plus, the new Challenger R/T Redline adds even more attitude and style with a right-from-the-factory custom look to the brand’s iconic coupe. Following Dodge Challenger’s signature A-line bodyside character line, an all-new two-color Redline Red and Graphite stripe runs from behind the front wheel arches to the tail. For a distinctive look, the rear-quarter section of the stripe features the “Redline” name in Red over Graphite color scheme. For a distinctive look, the R/T Redline features a body-color grille surround. Filling the wheel wells, the Dodge Challenger R/T Redline features 20-inch Black Chrome wheels with a Redline Red lip and inner backbone for a one-of-a-kind look. For even more performance and driving precision at-the-limit handling, the available Super Track Pak adds Goodyear Eagle F1 P245/45R20 three-season performance tires, high-performance brake linings and a lowered ride height. With its two-color stripe and four available exterior colors, including Billet Silver, Granite Crystal, Bright White and Pitch Black, each new Dodge Challenger R/T Redline will stand out from the crowd. Dodge Challenger R/T Redline features a Dark Slate Gray interior with Dark Slate Gray (R/T) performance seats, or premium Nappa leather performance seats in Radar Red or Dark Slate Gray (R/T Plus). Automatic transmission models also feature bright pedals, a Mopar® T-Handle shifter and remote start. HEMI Power For the performance enthusiast, the 2013 Dodge Challenger R/T Redline features the legendary 5.7-liter HEMI V-8 engine that delivers up to 375 horsepower and 410 lb.-ft. of torque and gets up to 25 miles per gallon (mpg) on the highway. When paired with the track-proven Tremec TR6060 six-speed manual transmission, the Dodge Challenger R/T delivers smooth shifts, while delivering even more power through unique performance-tuned dual exhaust and under-floor mufflers with low-restriction bottle resonators. The result, 0-60 mph runs in the low-5-second range and a sinister exhaust growl for the cars left in its rear-view mirror; a trademark of the original Challenger HEMI from more than 43 years ago. The 5.7-liter HEMI V-8 engine is also available with a five-speed automatic transmission producing 372 horsepower and 400 lb.-ft. of torque. In addition, this version of the engine includes Chrysler Group’s innovative Fuel Saver Technology to seamlessly transition to high-fuel-economy four-cylinder mode when less power is needed and V-8 mode when more power is in demand. And for even more control, steering-wheel mounted paddle shifters with “sport mode” transmission calibration are included. Loaded with standard features Dodge Challenger R/T Redline also includes a tremendous level of standard equipment found on every 2013 Challenger R/T, including the legendary 5.7-liter HEMI V-8 engine with cold-air induction delivering up to 375 horsepower, Tremec six-speed manual transmission, performance-tuned suspension, performance-disc brakes, performance-tuned steering calibration, Uconnect Voice Command with Bluetooth, console-mounted USB port with iPod control and auxiliary audio input jack, SiriusXM Satellite Radio with 12-months subscription, automatic headlamps, LED-illuminated instrument cluster with 160-mph primary speedometer, instrument panel with mini-carbon bezel, fog lamps, “R/T” grille badge, “HEMI” hood badges and rear body-color deck-lid spoiler. Remote start, bright pedals and Mopar T-handle shifter are also included with the five-speed automatic transmission. For drivers who want even more premium refinement and details, the new Dodge Challenger R/T Redline can also be built on the 2013 Challenger R/T Plus, which includes premium Nappa leather seating in Dark Slate Gray or Radar Red, heated front seats, six Boston Acoustics premium speakers with 276-watt amplifier, ParkSense rear park assist, power heated mirrors, Electronic Vehicle Information Center (EVIC) with temperature gauge, location specific tire-pressure monitoring and compass, vehicle security alarm, and HomeLink universal transceiver. Remote start, bright pedals and Mopar T-handle shifter are also included with the five-speed automatic transmission. Just in time for spring The 2013 Dodge Challenger with R/T Redline Group is available for ordering now and arrives at dealerships this April with a U.S. MSRP of $1,995. When configured on the Challenger R/T or R/T Plus models, the MSRPs are $31,990 and $33,990 respectively (both prices exclude $995 destination). View full article
  23. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 2, 2013 Last year, Dodge unveiled a new package for the Challenger SXT Plus called the Rallye Redline which added a list of visual, interior and handling changes. However some complained that the Challenger R/T model should have this package as well. Dodge has heard those calls and at next week’s Chicago Auto Show will show the 2013 Challenger R/T Redline. Much like the Rallye Redline, the R/T Redline gets twenty-inch black chrome wheels with red paint accents. However, the R/T Redline also gets side stripes with graphite graphics featuring Redline lettering to give it a more retro look. Under the hood, the R/T sticks with the 5.7L HEMI V8. When equipped with the six-speed manual, the 5.7L produces 375 horsepower and 410 pound-feet of torque thanks to a performance-tuned, low-restriction exhaust. Go with the five-speed automatic and the engine produces 372 horsepower and 400 pound-feet. The five-speed also gets a chrome Mopar t-handle shifter and paddle shifters on the steering wheel. The R/T Redline package will cost $1,995 and be available on the Challenger R/T ($32,985*) and R/T Plus ($34,985*). You can order a Challenger R/T with the R/T Redline package now and they will arrive in April. *Prices include $995 destination charge. Source: Dodge William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 New Dodge Challenger R/T Redline Delivers Red-hot Muscle Car Performance and Styling at the Ice-cold 2013 Chicago Auto Show New 2013 Dodge Challenger R/T Redline heats up the brand’s iconic muscle-car lineup with HEMI®-power, red-hot exterior accents and performance suspension Signature 20-inch Black Chrome wheels feature a Redline Red accented lip and backbone for a customized look Legendary 5.7-liter HEMI V-8 delivers up to 375 horsepower and 410 lb-ft torque through a track-proven six-speed manual transmission, or paddle-shifting and driver adaptable automatic transmission The 2013 Dodge Challenger R/T Redline Group will be available this spring on R/T and R/T Plus models at a tremendous value with starting U.S. Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of just $1,995 building off America’s most affordable V-8 muscle car February 1, 2013 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - While ice cold winter weather sweeps across Lake Shore Drive, the Dodge brand heats up the 2013 Chicago Auto Show by building on Challenger’s red-hot record selling year, and now at the show, the introduction of the new Challenger R/T Redline with modern muscle-car cues, a potent HEMI® V-8 engine throwing down 375 horsepower and a performance-tuned chassis for world-class dynamics — this new Challenger delivers exactly what Dodge fans want. “Building on Challenger’s all-time sales record in 2012, the new Challenger R/T Redline fuses our iconic heritage with a one-of-a-kind customized appearance,” said Reid Bigland, President and CEO – Dodge Brand. “Featuring unique body-side stripes and black chrome wheels with red accents, the new R/T Redline combines unmatched personalization with the unmistakable performance of the legendary HEMI V-8.” The new 2013 Dodge Challenger R/T Redline builds on the success of the 305 horsepower V-6 Challenger Rallye Redline model that arrived in the middle of the 2012 model year. 2013 Dodge Challenger R/T Redline Based on the 2013 Dodge Challenger R/T — America’s most affordable V-8 muscle car at $29,995 MSRP — or R/T Plus, the new Challenger R/T Redline adds even more attitude and style with a right-from-the-factory custom look to the brand’s iconic coupe. Following Dodge Challenger’s signature A-line bodyside character line, an all-new two-color Redline Red and Graphite stripe runs from behind the front wheel arches to the tail. For a distinctive look, the rear-quarter section of the stripe features the “Redline” name in Red over Graphite color scheme. For a distinctive look, the R/T Redline features a body-color grille surround. Filling the wheel wells, the Dodge Challenger R/T Redline features 20-inch Black Chrome wheels with a Redline Red lip and inner backbone for a one-of-a-kind look. For even more performance and driving precision at-the-limit handling, the available Super Track Pak adds Goodyear Eagle F1 P245/45R20 three-season performance tires, high-performance brake linings and a lowered ride height. With its two-color stripe and four available exterior colors, including Billet Silver, Granite Crystal, Bright White and Pitch Black, each new Dodge Challenger R/T Redline will stand out from the crowd. Dodge Challenger R/T Redline features a Dark Slate Gray interior with Dark Slate Gray (R/T) performance seats, or premium Nappa leather performance seats in Radar Red or Dark Slate Gray (R/T Plus). Automatic transmission models also feature bright pedals, a Mopar® T-Handle shifter and remote start. HEMI Power For the performance enthusiast, the 2013 Dodge Challenger R/T Redline features the legendary 5.7-liter HEMI V-8 engine that delivers up to 375 horsepower and 410 lb.-ft. of torque and gets up to 25 miles per gallon (mpg) on the highway. When paired with the track-proven Tremec TR6060 six-speed manual transmission, the Dodge Challenger R/T delivers smooth shifts, while delivering even more power through unique performance-tuned dual exhaust and under-floor mufflers with low-restriction bottle resonators. The result, 0-60 mph runs in the low-5-second range and a sinister exhaust growl for the cars left in its rear-view mirror; a trademark of the original Challenger HEMI from more than 43 years ago. The 5.7-liter HEMI V-8 engine is also available with a five-speed automatic transmission producing 372 horsepower and 400 lb.-ft. of torque. In addition, this version of the engine includes Chrysler Group’s innovative Fuel Saver Technology to seamlessly transition to high-fuel-economy four-cylinder mode when less power is needed and V-8 mode when more power is in demand. And for even more control, steering-wheel mounted paddle shifters with “sport mode” transmission calibration are included. Loaded with standard features Dodge Challenger R/T Redline also includes a tremendous level of standard equipment found on every 2013 Challenger R/T, including the legendary 5.7-liter HEMI V-8 engine with cold-air induction delivering up to 375 horsepower, Tremec six-speed manual transmission, performance-tuned suspension, performance-disc brakes, performance-tuned steering calibration, Uconnect Voice Command with Bluetooth, console-mounted USB port with iPod control and auxiliary audio input jack, SiriusXM Satellite Radio with 12-months subscription, automatic headlamps, LED-illuminated instrument cluster with 160-mph primary speedometer, instrument panel with mini-carbon bezel, fog lamps, “R/T” grille badge, “HEMI” hood badges and rear body-color deck-lid spoiler. Remote start, bright pedals and Mopar T-handle shifter are also included with the five-speed automatic transmission. For drivers who want even more premium refinement and details, the new Dodge Challenger R/T Redline can also be built on the 2013 Challenger R/T Plus, which includes premium Nappa leather seating in Dark Slate Gray or Radar Red, heated front seats, six Boston Acoustics premium speakers with 276-watt amplifier, ParkSense rear park assist, power heated mirrors, Electronic Vehicle Information Center (EVIC) with temperature gauge, location specific tire-pressure monitoring and compass, vehicle security alarm, and HomeLink universal transceiver. Remote start, bright pedals and Mopar T-handle shifter are also included with the five-speed automatic transmission. Just in time for spring The 2013 Dodge Challenger with R/T Redline Group is available for ordering now and arrives at dealerships this April with a U.S. MSRP of $1,995. When configured on the Challenger R/T or R/T Plus models, the MSRPs are $31,990 and $33,990 respectively (both prices exclude $995 destination).
  24. So companies this week have been rolling out the commercials leading up to SuperBowl Sunday. Have you watched any yet and have a favorite? http://tv.yahoo.com/news/how-will-audi-s-super-bowl-commercial-end--you-decide--181755230.html;_ylt=AhC9VB5XUIFJWztrjZN_WcuOJvJ_;_ylu=X3oDMTNvNXFsY2w3BG1pdAMEcGtnAzNiZTg3ZGFmLWFjMDEtMzdjYS1hMTZlLWExYTYwNmVkZjViMQRwb3MDMwRzZWMDTWVkaWFCQ2Fyb3VzZWxNaXhlZExQQ0EEdmVyA2Q0NTk4YmMyLTZhMzctMTFlMi1iYmZjLTUxNWE4ZjNmYWZmYw--;_ylv=3 Yahoo has a section that allows you to start watching, so far I have to say that VW commercials are a dud. Reggie and Be Happy are not going to sell me a car. On the other Hand I have only watched 1 of the Audi commercials and it was the Prom one which I loved. Sound off on what commercials are making you laugh and which ones do you love? Will GM be able to top themselves with Dave having lost his life because he drove a Ford? So please post which is your over all favorite commercial and which is your favorite Auto Commercial!
  25. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com January 24, 2013 The letter R in the automotive world means an automaker has added a bit of spice to one of their vehicles. Examples include Acura Integra Type R and Volkswagen Golf R32 and R. The best example of the letter R being used by an automaker is Volvo. A brand known for safety and button-down styling would surprise the world when it introduced the 850 T-5 R sedan and wagon in 1995. Draped in some very wild colors, the 850 T-5 R was for its time one of fastest vehicles on the planet thanks to some major tweaks to the powertrain and suspension. Volvo would follow up with the 1999 V70R and the 2003 - 2006 S60R and V70R models, all of them proving improved performance over the base models. But since the S60R and V70R models left the Volvo lineup, there hasn’t quite been the craziness the R models brought forth. Instead Volvo fell back into its safety ritual, but with more distinctive designs. Two key things would happen to Volvo within the past couple of years to bring them back into the crazy fold. First would be Volvo strengthening and expanding its partnership with its racing and performance partner Polestar. Second would be the introduction of the R-Design trim for the S60 and XC60. R-Design brings some tweaks to exterior, engine, and chassis. That brings us to the 2013 Volvo S60 T6 AWD R-Design. Does it show signs that craziness has entered Volvo once more? Subtlety? Where?! Volvo’s have been known to be very understated in their designs and the S60 R-Design is no exception to that rule, if you don’t decide to get your R-Design in what Volvo calls Rebel Blue. While I did like the bold color choice, some people weren’t so impressed with it. If you want to be fully understated with your S60 R-Design, go with another color. Aside from the color, there’s a lot to appreciate about the S60’s design. The new S60 is an evolution of the first-generation model with some coupe cues in the form of a short rear overhang and sloping roof. Volvo has also fitted a unique set of headlights with LEDs sitting right beside it. The R-Design package layers on a lower front spoiler, eighteen-inch alloy wheels, rear spoiler, rear diffuser with dual-exhaust pipes, and a little R-Design badge on the front denoting its status. A Lesson in Simplicity The S60 R-Design’s interior is one of simplicity. The dashboard is very clean in its design with a mixture of a soft-touch materials, metal accents around the vents and door pulls, and a unique metal center stack. Its a very handsome and and well-built interior. The front seats, draped in black leather, were some of the most comfortable seats I have sat in all year. Providing eight-way adjustments, heat, and the right amount of bolstering, the seats had the right of comfort and support for enthusiastic or long drives. Backseat passengers will appreciate the amount of headroom. Legroom can vary from good to none depending on how far the front seat is set. Simplicity is a good word to describe the infotainment system. Instead of going with a controller like BMW, Mercedes and Audi, or a touchscreen with capacitive touch buttons like Cadillac and Lincoln, Volvo went with using a center stack full of buttons and knobs for to move around and control the system which appears on a seven-inch non-touch color screen. Some will complain that the center stack has way too many buttons and is a distraction to see which button you need to press. I would agree that when you're first using it, but after a while, it becomes second nature. While its very easy to use the system, I found that doing certain functions like moving around the map was a pain in the butt. I hope Volvo keeps the idea of simplicity when working on the next generation of their infotainment system, but maybe adds a joystiq or something that makes certain functions easier to do. Those Crazy Swedes Under the S60 T6 AWD R-Design is Volvo’s T6 engine; a turbocharged straight-six. In the normal S60 T6, you’re looking at 300 horsepower and 325 lb-ft of torque. In the R-Design model, you’re looking at 325 horsepower (@ 5,400 RPM) and 354 lb-ft of torque (@ 3,200 - 3,600 RPM). This is in part due to Polestar which increased the boost of the turbocharger and installed a new module which changes ignition, fuel mapping and throttle response. Power is sent to a six-speed Geartronic automatic transmission down to a Haldex-built AWD system. The engine has a Jekyll and Hyde personality. If you go about and drive the S60 R-Design normally, the engine is able to keep up with traffic very well with nary a hint of its performance cred. However if you decide to slam the pedal to the floor or throw the transmission into either sport or manual mode, the engine will throw you back into your seat and climb in speed at a very alarming rate. Plus, you get this amazing growl from the exhaust. The six-speed automatic does an amazing job of proving smooth and unobtrusive shifts whether I had my foot to the floor or moving along at a normal pace. I did wish the R-Design came with some paddles to have more fun with the engine. I did have an odd problem with this S60 R-Design’s gas pedal. If I put my foot on the pedal normally, about a quarter-way down, I found that I would going into hyperspace speed. But if maybe go an eighth of the way down on the pedal, the car accelerates normally. I’m not whether this is a programming issue or not, but reading through some other reviews of this car don’t mention this problem, so its just an issue with this particular vehicle. The Haldex-built AWD system was non-intrusive and provided a feeling of sure-footedness no matter the conditions outside. Combined with Volvo’s Corner Traction Control system, the AWD system made the vehicle feel small and nimble when going through corners. Fuel economy wise, S60 T6 R-Design is right in the middle of the pack in the compact luxury car class with the EPA rating it 18 City/25 Highway/21 Combined. For the week, I averaged 21.2 MPG with mostly suburban driving. A word of warning though; if you decide to stick your foot in the S60 T6 R-Design more often than not, be prepared to see your average MPG drop into the mid-teens. The R-Design’s suspension is mostly the same as the normal S60. There are MacPherson struts up front and a independent rear suspension setup with stabilizer bars at either end. For the R-Design model, Volvo adds a 15 millimeter drop to the suspension, stiffer springs and bushings, strut tower brace, and Mono-tube shocks in the rear. These changes give the S60 R-Design almost the same handling characteristics as those from Germany. As for driving on a day to day basis, the R-Design suspension was able to cope with road imperfections very well. The steering comes in the form of a rack and pinion setup with variable power assist. The steering hits the right balance of weight and feel whether you're attacking your favorite road or doing the daily drive. It gives the Germans and even the Cadillac ATS a run for their money. It's A Volvo After All Being a Volvo of course, the S60 R-Design is filled to the brim with safety technologies. Along with the AWD system and Corner Traction Control, the R-Design is fitted airbags all around the vehicle, Volvo’s Side Impact Protection System (SIPS) and Whiplash Protection System (WHIPS), a rearview camera, and City Safety which uses a sensor mounted at the top of the windshield to monitor traffic ahead of you and put the brakes on if the vehicle senses an impending collision. One feature I wished was standard on the S60 R-Design was Volvo’s BLIS (Blind Spot Information System) which can tell you if a vehicle is in your blind spot. This would be really helpful since rear visibility is terrible thanks to some thick C-Pillars. BLIS is a $700 option on the R-Design, but I do hope Volvo makes it standard sometime in the S60’s lifecycle. Welcome To Crazy Town The 2013 Volvo S60 T6 AWD R-Design shows signs of craziness returning to Volvo. The evidence for this includes the wild blue paint, body modifications that are subtle, the two-sidedness of the powertrain, and a very impressive chassis setup. While Volvo might not have the same cachet as a BMW or an Audi, the S60 R-Design can match them in other areas. If you’re the person who doesn't like to follow the leader, the S60 R-Design is worth a look. Disclaimer: Volvo Cars of North America provided the S60 R-Design, Insurance, and one tank of gas. Album: 2013 Volvo S60 T6 AWD R-Design Year - 2013 Make – Volvo Model – S60 Trim – T6 AWD R-Design Engine – 3.0L Turbocharged Inline-Six Driveline – All-Wheel Drive, Six-Speed Automatic Horsepower @ RPM – 325 @ 5400 RPM Torque @ RPM – 354 @ 3000 RPM Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 18/25/21 Curb Weight – 3,835 lbs Location of Manufacture – Ghent, Belgum Base Price - $43,900.00 As Tested Price - $48,195.00 (Includes $895.00 destination charge) Options: S60 Platinum Package - $2,700.00 Climate Package - $700.00 William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. View full article

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