Wednesday, September 26, 2007, posted by Auto Rider at 9:56 PM

The iQ features an ultra compact body with efficient space for three adults and an extra seat for one child. Toyota called this as the flexible 3+1 seating system. In addition, the Toyota iQ concept was designed and created at ED2, the Japanese automaker's European design studio located in France.

According to Wahei Hirai, Manager of design activities for Toyota Motor Corporation, “The iQ concept is designed to reflect and enhance the lifestyle of its owners. The Toyota iQ is dubbed as the "world’s smallest four-seat passenger concept car", according to the Japanese automaker. The iQ is shorter than the Toyota Aygo, but features the same dimensions as the Toyota Yaris in terms of width and height.

Toyota targets the everyday urban transportation of European people. Japan's Nikkei newspaper said that Toyota is targeting an annual production of 100,000 units of the Toyota iQ in Europe.

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, posted by Auto Rider at 8:39 PM

Tyler nicknamed "The Demon of Screamin'" is the lead singer for the Boston-based rock band Aerosmith. Tyler is also known for his passion for motorcycles. And just recently, the singer announced that he has collaborated with Mark Dirico and AC Custom Motorcycles to come up with the Red Wing Motorcycle Company.

According to the company's website, "Steven Tyler brought an artistic flair to these motorcycles." The site further describes what Tyler has done in the design of the motorcycles saying that Tyler created "striking color palette with clean chrome lines and dozens of small details that make Red Wing Motorcycles like no other motorcycle available."

"You get on one of these bikes and you can ride for days," Tyler said. “These bikes are sick, rugged, and just damn cool. And they’re amazing to look at." According to the makers of Red Wing motorcycles, the bikes that they manufacture are not only designed to look good but are also designed to be taken on a ride. Compared to a stock Harley-Davidson, Red Wing motorcycles have 35 percent more horsepower delivered to the rear wheel. This makes it more powerful on the road and motorcycle enthusiasts may soon be lining up to own one of these unique bikes.

The company not only has the style and the flair of Steven Tyler but is also backed by a competent and experienced team of engineers. Internationally renowned master engineer Mark Dirico lends his talent to this company. Every part of every motorcycle is designed to give the motorcycle a smooth ride. This includes keeping the rider comfortable at all times. All of the bikes that the company will sell are hand crafted by a team at AC Custom Motorcycles which has had more than 300 years of combined experience in manufacturing and perfecting motorcycles. "Make no mistake, these custom motorcycles are not just works of art. These motorcycles are comfortable, performance oriented and crafted to be the only ride you’ll need for years to come," claimed the company's site.

For Aerosmith fans, Tyler has an added bonus as every motorcycle that they produce is hand signed by the rock and roll superstar himself. With the popularity of Steven Tyler it can be expected that a lot of rock and roll and motorcycle fans will be the first ones to order a motorcycle from Red Wing.

Steven Tyler shares his inspiration for Red Wing bikes saying: "It is interesting that we stopped where most people start. Their egos take over and they elongate the front end and go past that point of no return. We kept it retro and used a lot of quality parts. It’s really good stuff. Very retro, very rideable. Very non-breakable. Very dependable. Very demon of screamin'."

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Saturday, September 22, 2007, posted by Auto Rider at 12:23 AM

That milestone measures Ford’s progress in the Philippines.

Ford Motor Co. Philippines (FMCP) expect to ship out in October its 50,000th unit manufactured in its Sta. Rosa facility as the company exports an average of 10,000 units of completely built up vehicles a year, said

The automaker, which also owns the Mazda brand, assembles the Ford Escape, Ford Focus, Ford Laser, Mazda 3 and Mazda Tribute in its facility in Sta. Rosa, Laguna. Additionally, FMCP exports CKD kits as of October 2004.

Production began in September 1999 with the Ford Lynx, and the company began building the Mazda-based local Ford Ranger in March, 2000.

FPMC is the only participant in the government's automotive export program that is actually exporting.

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Thursday, September 20, 2007, posted by Auto Rider at 10:51 PM

At the Frankfurt Auto Show, Audi AG released details of a jaw-dropping upmarket supermini dubbed as the A1. The supermini coupe, based on the Audi MQB (Modular Transverse Matrix) platform and Audi Shooting Brake concept car styling, is expected to be introduced to the market in 2009.

Michael Dick, Audi's board member responsible for product engineering, confirmed that the A1 would not share the radical, all-aluminium, lightweight construction of the A2.

Audi's own supermini will be a classy hatchback laced with the brand's design flourishes - and will form a crucial plank in its strategy to become the world's biggest premium car maker by the middle of the next decade. A1 is said to arrive with 3 doors, 4 seats, in compact size and with the new twincharger engines. Diesel engines will also be available.

It will have all the features of the larger Audi models such as the multimedia interface. The Audi A1 will be engineered to rival the MINI. Now Audi is getting a plant VW has left behind. Because of VW's cost-cutting measures, a Brussels plant has been relinquished to Audi, VW's luxury division, which is in frantic need of extra production capacity.

“Audi is responsible for the development of Bentleys,” Dick said, “and we are developing an alloy structure for the next generation."

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Wednesday, September 19, 2007, posted by Auto Rider at 7:14 PM

Recently, it was announced that Kasey Kahne will replace Dale Earnhardt Jr. as the face of Budweiser in the Nextel Cup Series. According to Bloomberg, Anheuser Busch, the makers of Budweiser, has entered an agreement with Gillett Evernham Motorsports. Kahne is with the team and his No. 9 car will be boasting the Budweiser logo next season.

Budweiser will be the young NASCAR driver's primary sponsor. Kasey Kahne has been sponsored by the said insurance company.

Marc Ganis, the president of SportsCorp Ltd., a sports marketing company, said that Kahne is a good choice for Budweiser. Budweiser meanwhile is also upbeat about sponsoring the young driver. "Budweiser has a long and storied history with NASCAR and some of its most successful drivers."

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, posted by Auto Rider at 7:04 PM

After giving actor Will Ferrell the first model of BMW Hydrogen 7, the German automaker now rolls out the BMW Hydrogen 7 into Jay Leno's garage. The BMW Hydrogen 7 is now on Leno's so called "green garage". BMW gave the Hydrogen 7 to Jay Leno as a part of the company’s Hydrogen 7 Pioneer Program aims to promote the use of hydrogen fuel in the automotive industry.

Honda though is not the only automaker which has developed a vehicle that is fueled by hydrogen. German automaker BMW has also developed the Hydrogen 7 - a hydrogen-powered luxury sedan. The German automaker gave keys of the Hydrogen 7 to several celebrities including Will Ferrell. "As an avid car enthusiast I'm always interested in the future of automotive technology," says Leno. I look forward to driving the Hydrogen 7 and learning more about hydrogen as a fuel for our future."

Although it is a production model, the car is not yet for sale. With BMW's expertise in engineering and resources, the Hydrogen 7 is not surprisingly a clean car with the performance to boot. And since it is a luxury car, it is filled with technological amenities that one can usually find in any BMW car.

Some celebrities and other personalities also wanted the BMW Hydrogen 7 on their garage include:

- Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie at the "Ocean's 13" premiere in Hollywood
- Fox Entertainment Chairman Peter Liguori at the FOX All-Star Party in Santa Monica Richard Gere and Sharon Stone at the Cinema for Peace Gala in Berlin
- "An Inconvenient Truth" producer Davis Guggenheim
- Director Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck at the 2007 Academy Awards
- German Federal Minister for Economy and Technology Michael Glos
- Günter Verheugen ( Vice President of the European Commission)
- World renowned soprano Anna Netrebko

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, posted by Auto Rider at 6:53 PM

The design characteristics of the BMW X6 Sports Activity Coupe Concept combine the elegance and sporty features of a BMW Coupe with the bold and aggressive features of BMW X. This model will also feature the German automaker's intelligent xDrive all wheel drive technology. The design of BMW Concept X6 is the authentic visualisation of outstanding driving qualities borne out by the car mainly through BMW’s intelligent xDrive technology as well as Dynamic Performance Control.

Outside, the BMW Concept X6 comes with sleek exterior body styling with numerous design features from BMW. The optical balance of the front and rear wheels clearly visible from the side bears convincing testimony to BMW’s intelligent xDrive all-wheel-drive technology.

Other exterior highlights of the BMW Concept X6 include convex and concave surfaces, striking front view, extra-large BMW kidney grille, air intake with robust slats, headlights cut in a sharp profile, clear accentuation of the side panels,. wheel arches with flared contours, bumper elements finished in body colour, innovative designed rear lights, exhaust tailpipes and horizontal lines that emphasize wide track, dark paintwork, sill trim at the side, chrome coloured slats, foglamps with special surrounds in the outer air intakes, chrome plated tailpipes, milled aluminium on the underfloor, Y-spoke design light alloy wheels measuring 21 inches, exterior mirrors with a white-glistening strip of lights between the lower unit finished in body color, muscular bumper with classic design elements, rear lid integrated with a striking air flow contour lip, L-shape rear lightsand indicator lines integrated in the rear lights.

The aesthetic and aerodynamic components complement the exterior features of the BMW Concept X6. The car features a dynamically flowing coupé roofline with a high sill-line, muscular wheel arches, strong centre of gravity, offering a sporty and elegant driving feel. A rear spoiler completes the car's aerodynamic package.

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Thursday, September 13, 2007, posted by Auto Rider at 11:23 PM

In a recent hearing held in Paris, France, WSMC finds the British Formula 1 team (McLaren) guilty as Mike Coughlan, Chief Designer of McLaren team was found out to have possession of a document that belongs to Ferrari, which is a 780-page record of the Italian team's Ferrari's 2007 race car technical data.

Here's the official statement of WMSC:
"The WMSC has stripped Vodafone McLaren Mercedes of all constructor points in the 2007 FIA Formula One World Championship and the team can score no points for the remainder of the season. Furthermore, the team will pay a fine equal to $100m, less the FOM income lost as a result of the points' deduction."

Team McLaren was shocked by the decision and said they do not deserve this kind of penalty. The team also insisted that only their designer Mike Coughlin should be responsible for the penalty because the team did not gain advantage and did not use Ferrari's technical documents. The team will indeed appeal WMSC's decision to the higher court.

Team principal of McLaren, Ron Dennis also stated: "The entire engineering team in excess of 140 people provided statements to the FIA affirming that they had never received or used the Ferrari information." While McLaren team is shocked and frustrated with the verdict, Scuderia Ferrari team celebrates with bliss flying over their heads as the Italian stable can now secure their F1 Constructor's Championship trophy.

Ferrari said: "In light of new evidence, facts and behaviour of an extremely serious nature and grossly prejudicial to the interest of the sport have been further demonstrated. Ferrari is satisfied that the truth has now emerged."

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, posted by Auto Rider at 6:56 PM

The Mercedes Benz F 700 concept will feature the German automaker's innovative powertrain technology called DIESOTTO. Under the hood of this model comes a 1.8-liter 4-cylinder engine that combines the low emissions of gasoline fuel with the fuel consumption advantages of diesel fuel.

A third vertical row of single high-performance LEDs are the daytime driving lights. The driver’s door also “observes” its surroundings attentively. If collisions threaten, the door is arrested by a controllable hydraulic cylinder.

Dr. Thomas Weber, Board member of DaimlerChrysler AG responsible for Group Research & Mercedes Car Group Development said: “Our goal is to make the gasoline-powered car just as economical in consumption as the diesel. The new DIESOTTO concept is a major step in that direction, combining the best properties of the spark-ignition engine and the diesel engine. The F 700 also sets standards in regard to road roar, tire vibration and suspension comfort. With two laser scanners the active PRE-SCAN suspension scans the roadway in front of the car. The hydraulically controlled active suspension proactively compensates for detected hindrances, enabling entirely new comfort characteristics –a flying carpet feeling."

Another innovative feature of the Mercedes Benz F 700 concept is the “SERVO-HMI”. This feature is a display of controls that are simple and self-explanatory. With this interface, the driver can make a conversation with the system when making navigation inputs like finding alternative routes, traffic information, and others.

Other initial features of the Mercedes Benz F 700 include long wheelbase, PRE-SCAN suspension, REVERSE seat, and interior with maximum spaciousness and supreme comfort. Mercedes Benz will released other features of this new concept during the official launch of the production version.

Mercedes Benz will released other features of this new concept during the official launch of the production version.

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, posted by Auto Rider at 6:22 PM

For the 2008 model year, Mazda announced that the freshened Premacy is now available to Japanese consumers. The Premacy is known as the Mazda5 in the United States and in Europe.

Japanese automaker Mazda's offering in the United States and in Europe includes the Mazda5. But in the Japanese auto market, the said vehicle goes by the name of Mazda Premacy. The changes made to the Premacy are part of the automaker's "Communicative and Dynamic" product concept. The Premacy also uses reliable components.

The changes made to the Premacy are part of the automaker's "Communicative and Dynamic" product concept. On the outside, Mazda engineers gave the new Premacy a smoother look with clean lines connecting the hood of the multi-purpose vehicle to its bumper. The headlight design was also changed from the previous version of the nameplate. For upscale version of the Premacy, LED indicator lights are embedded on the door mirrors as well as giving it LED rear combination lights.

On the performance side of things, the new Premacy now uses Mazda's sequential valve timing or SV-T. The use of the said technology increased the performance level of both the available engines for the Premacy. These two engines are the 2.0-liter and the 2.3-liter MZR engines. For the front-wheel drive variants, electronically-controlled five-speed automatic transmission has been thrown into the mix of its features. The addition of these features made the transfer of torque and linear acceleration better.

According to the automaker, all front-wheel drive Premacy with the 2.0-liter MZR engine are certified to meet Japan's 2010 fuel economy standards. The vehicles in fact exceed the standards which makes them eligible for the country's Green Tax exemptions. With that certification, the Mazda5 can surely meet California's stringent emission standards. The automaker also announced that both front-wheel drive and four-wheel drive variants of the Premacy have been certified by the Japanese government as Super-Ultra –Low Emission Vehicles.

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Wednesday, September 12, 2007, posted by Auto Rider at 7:10 PM

Audi is hiring young graduates in an effort to ensure the strong future of the brand. This year, the automaker is looking for 600 new employees.

German automaker Audi is making a bid to become the king of the mountain. Six hundred academics is the target for Audi. The young talents are there to unveil the new Audi RS6 - the company's most powerful production vehicle. Dr, Werner Widuckel, a Board Member for Human Resources at Audi AG, declared that the increase in their offering will mean more jobs in the future. Only motivated and dedicated employees will ensure company success and innovative power in the future," he said.

Most in demand are graduates in electrical engineering, mechatronics, mechanical engineering and automotive technology. Not only academics are attracted to Audi as an employer: 682 young people started their apprenticeships last week in Ingolstadt and Neckarsulm. Audi provides training in 20 different vocations.

"To a great extent, graduates want to identify with the products of their preferred employer. Factors such as market success and innovative power, interesting work and individual opportunities for development play an important role when choosing an employer," added Dr. Widuckel.

Last year, the automaker recruited 450 academics. The increase in the number of employees they are hiring shows the company responding to the need for engineers. The automaker is focusing on the employment of young engineers to develop highly-efficient diesel engines as well as alternative powertrains.

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, posted by Auto Rider at 6:52 PM

McLaren is being accused of spying on Ferrari and using Ferrari data to get the advantage over the Italian team.

Earlier this year, just four days after the European Grand Prix, McLaren was summoned to face the FIA - the ruling body of the sport. One strange twist to this saga is the suggestion that McLaren's team principal, Ron Dennis, retire and the whole scandal will disappear. Although Dennis and the team are facing trying times, the Italian Grand Prix became a much needed boost for them. The MP4-22 that the two McLaren drivers used employs an engine provided by German automaker Mercedes.

After the race, Dennis was in tears. "I am pretty emotional, but I am more emotional about the support the team showed me, and that's what we are - a team," said Dennis in the post-race interview.

Dennis, though, will now stand alone on Thursday in defence of his team as what he described as "a very trying weekend" turns to what will be another traumatic day in Paris.

"Clearly, there's now a need to turn our attention to other issues that confront the team, to give a full and detailed explanation as to all the circumstances we've found ourselves involved in over the past few months."

He said that the support of the team members as well as their partners Vodafone and Mercedes-Benz has been great for the whole organization. "We've tried to maintain our motivation and dignity in challenging circumstances," concluded Dennis.

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, posted by Auto Rider at 6:32 PM

At this year’s International Auto Show, auto giants unveiled vehicles that mirror the industry’s color – GREEN. Green for environment-friendly vehicles. Also, green for profitability.

Automakers introduced improved fuel efficiency and engines that run on hydrogen or batteries. Amid the strong European and global economies, most of the auto giants have posted sales declines. The Dearborn-based automaker is working on diesel versions of the Focus, Mondeo and a new subcompact with innovative technology to lessen emissions. All three vehicles will carry the ECOnetic badge of the automaker.

"Renault is focusing on designing more environmentally efficient engines across all its models.”

Nissan Vice President Carlos Tavares said that the automaker is not concentrating on any specific environmental system. In the midst of the environmental drive, automakers also touted improved sales. Additionally, Porsche AG said that its sales increased 3.4 percent during its recently ended fiscal year, pushed up by rising demand for its luxury cars.

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Thursday, September 6, 2007, posted by Auto Rider at 12:05 AM

General Motors has announced pricing for the all-new Chevrolet Malibu. Prices for the Malibu will start under $20,000 with the base model LS listing for $19,345, a $2,000 premium over the previous model. A hybrid Malibu will also be available for $22,140, undercutting the Camry Hybrid by about $3,000. Scheduled to roll out in Chevy dealerships across the country this coming November.

GM offers five variants of the all-new 2008 Chevy Malibu. These include the Malibu LS, Malibu 1LT, Malibu 2LT, Malibu LTZ, and the Malibu Hybrid. Gone is the previous cliff-face fascia and Rubbermaid trim; instead there’s a striking, twin cockpit design with some classy two-tone trim options. Chevy has also loaded-up on safety features to reinforce the Malibu’s standing as a family fave. Standard motivation is GM’s 164-hp 2.4-liter Ecotec four-cylinder, with the all-aluminum 3.6-liter 252-hp V-6 as an option.

Chevy Malibu model trims has to offer.

- 169-horsepower 2.4L Ecotec DOHC four-cylinder engine
252-horsepower (188 kW) 3.6L DOHC V-6 with variable valve timing
- new grille design and heritage-inspired twin round taillamps
- a choice of cloth, suede and leather inside; available two-tone cockpit in a number of color combinations
- gauges with Chevrolet blue LED backlighting
- standard four-wheel independent suspension
- Standard theft-deterrent system for vehicle and contents
- Remote vehicle starting (standard on 2LT and LTZ; available on 1LT)
- standard universal home remote (for 2LT and LTZ only)
- TAPshift manual shift control (available on 2LT and standard on LTZ)
- 16-inch standard wheels (LS)
- 18-inch ultra-bright aluminum polished wheels (available on 2LT, standard LTZ)
- available rear power center includes 110-volt AC adapter with three-prong outlet and LTZ
- available sunroof (for LT and LTZ models only)
- premium eight-speaker, 210-watt sound system (standard on LTZ, available on 2LT)
- standard tire-pressure monitoring system
- six air bags (dual-stage frontal, seat-mounted side-impact thorax and head-curtain side air bags)
- four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes with all-speed traction control
- OnStar Gen 7 safety and security system with Turn-by-Turn Navigation
- XM Satellite Radio
- GM’s StabiliTrak electronic stability control system
- power-adjustable pedals

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Tuesday, September 4, 2007, posted by Auto Rider at 12:56 AM

The new Volkswagen Formula 3 engine has made its successful racing début during the DTM weekend at the Nürburgring.

"The new Formula 3 engine from Volkswagen has completed many hours of rig testing and reeled off plenty of test kilometres on the track. Now it's time to test it in direct competition," said Volkswagen Motorsport Director Kris Nissen.

Volkswagen initially equips three vehicles in the Formula 3 Euro Series. Maximilian Götz from Uffenheim (Germany) and Jonathan Summerton from the United States contest the series for the Italian Team RC Motorsport, while Marco Holzer from Augsburg (Germany) competes for AM Holzer Rennsport, using the new two-litre engine delivering about 210 hp of the Wolfsburg-based manufacturer.

In the Formula 3 Euro Series race on Saturday, Maximilian Götz in his Dallara F306 VW from Team RC Motorsport finished sixth thus immediately accumulating points in the début race. Additionally, on Sunday, Götz claimed ninth place, thus finishing in the top ten for the second time. In the first race, Götz advanced from grid position eight to sixth place. Götz started the race on Sunday from third place – the top eight in the first race start to the second event in reverse order. "Our goal is to equip six racing cars with our engines next year and to contest all races of the Formula 3 Euro Series. A third Dallara "powered by Volkswagen" driven by Marco Holzer, 19, is fielded by Team AM Holzer Rennsport.

Aside from the races of the Formula 3 Euro Series – in which the Wolfsburg-based automaker is making its comeback – and the ADAC Volkswagen Polo Cup, the other racing projects are represented at the Nürburgring as well. According to the Paddock Talk, the Golf GTI, which clinched class victory and the spectacular eighth place overall in the 24h-race in June, and the Race Touareg, which will be fielded by Volkswagen in January in the 2008 Dakar Rally, are on display.

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