By Jon Alain GuzikPosted 11.18.2011 at 12:58 pm 2 Comments
The Los Angeles Auto Show this year features more than fifty global and North American debuts plus more than a thousand cars, trucks and whatever else keeps the freeways and streets gridlocked here in Los Angeles 24x7.
I have never understood why people who aren't circus clowns ride unicycles. They seem designed specifically to create wipeouts and, subsequently, schadenfreude (a lesson our writer learned all too well in 1967 when he undertook the massive challenge of learning to ride one). But who knew that tucked away in the pages of PopScis past were some of the weirdest, most delightfully retro-futuristic unicycles of all time? Now we all do. And I don't think it's a stretch to say our lives are all the better for it.
As terrifying as this cover is, we won't lie, it's a pretty accurate depiction of how we feel about our vehicles on a bad day. Car maintenance doesn't come naturally to everyone, least of all first-time car owners in the 1920s. This week, we're taking a look at some old school car safety and maintenance tips, mostly from the glory days of stick shift and all that entailed for rookie motorists.
Automakers are doing all sorts of things to cars to make them smarter and more autonomous, as regular readers are aware. Here’s a new one: GM wants to take self-parking cars to a new level, letting them drop off their drivers and go off in search of empty spaces on their own. It’ll be more fuel-efficient than having humans circle the block waiting for a spot to open up, GM says.
A pretty basic fear of the oncoming electric car boom is a concern that charging will be similar to the old cellphone-charger fiasco. Will the owner of a 2017 Mazda Thundersnake have to find particular Mazda charging stations, or will they be able to pull up behind a Chrysler EnFuego? Those fears can be allayed, mostly: seven major automakers have all agreed to adopt a single, universal charging system.
We all know that one of the biggest obstacles to electric car adoption is the long, often overnight recharge time. But Nissan claims that they've created a new charging system that'll fill up your car (Nissan would undoubtedly prefer to say "your Leaf") in only ten minutes--not much different than a regular trip to the Earth-killing pump.
In theory, remote controlled cars are great, but in practice they're just never quite exciting enough for me. That is, until I decided to attach a jet engine to one. Yes, you read that right – a jet engine.
By John VoelckerPosted 10.06.2011 at 10:39 am 2 Comments
It's been hard in recent years to tell how seriously BMW takes electric cars. In 2009, BMW-owned Mini put 600 experimental electric Mini Coopers into test fleets, but the cars were clunky and the program was beset with logistical problems. GM and Nissan have both been selling electric cars for nearly a year now; BMW, meanwhile, is preparing to launch another test fleet—1,000 "ActiveEs," 1-series coupes converted to run on batteries. Then, in July, things seemed to change.
With connectivity and smarter planning, intelligent cars promise to cut congestion, make roads safer and generally improve the whole experience of getting behind the wheel. But nobody said it was all altruistic.