Tuesday, February 19, 2008, posted by Auto Rider at 5:25 PM

Korean automaker Kia Motors has teamed up with the NBA, the world's most popular basketball league. Said partnership allowed the Kia to be tagged as the "Official Automotive Partner of the NBA".

Recently, the Korean automaker ramped up their partnership with the league after they have become an "Official Partner" of 16 NBA teams. This move by the automaker is its first collaboration with teams in four major league sports in the country.

According to The Auto Channel, Kia Motors is now an "Official Partner" of the Atlanta Hawks, Boston Celtics, Denver Nuggets, Indiana Pacers, New York Knicks, San Antonio Spurs and Seattle SuperSonics. The automaker is also a "Proud Partner of the Charlotte Bobcats, Chicago Bulls, Cleveland Cavaliers, Golden State Warriors, Orlando Magic, Philadelphia 76ers, Phoenix Suns and Portland Trail Blazers. The Korean contingent is also named the "Official Vehicle" of the Miami Heat.

This move by the Korean automaker though seems to indicate that the automaker is moving in a direction where they are positioning themselves to be somewhat an icon that will be associated with the NBA.

KMA and Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia president Byung Mo Ahn said that the automaker is indeed proud with its association with the league. "Kia is proud to be a part of such a distinguished organization that also is a perfect fit for our youthful, energetic brand and our dynamic vehicles," said the CEO.

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Friday, February 8, 2008, posted by Auto Rider at 6:59 PM

At the Chicago Auto Show, the Dearborn-based automaker launched its very first factory-customized model – the Edge Sport.

The turbocharged Sport trim features 22-inch polished aluminum wheels, the first size on a crossover, or 20-inch premium painted wheels with Sport-branded black center hubs. To complete the rugged and aggressive appearance of the vehicle, engineers at Ford give it low-profile tires.

What’s more, the vehicle’s design and features like VistaRoof™ and SYNC helped make Ford Edge the best-selling crossover in the nation.

According to the automaker, the eight-piece Edge Sport body kit includes a unique front air dam, side skirts, lower door caps and a rear skirt, all finished in body color, instead of the dark lower on other Edge models. Additionally, the front air dam features and integrated fog lamps.

The Dearborn automaker also offered perky details such as the custom Sport badging, "foundry gray", smoked headlamp and tail lamp lenses, and polished dual exhaust tips emerging from openings in the rear skirt.

"While custom-made to appeal to customers, Edge Sport is smart business," said Mark Fields, president for The Americas. "The aftermarket industry has grown to a $40 billion annual business, and crossovers are the fastest-growing vehicle segment in the U.S. We want customers who crave something special to know that Ford can 'customize' their Edge - right at the factory."

The Sport trim, which joins the SE, SEL and Limited models in the Edge range, makes it the very first vehicle in the crossover segment to offer customization.

Edge Sport will be available in Sport Blue, Brilliant Silver, Ebony and Redfire. Inside, dark gray leather seats feature unique suede-feel patterned inserts in a combination of light and dark gray, with contrasting stitching for premium appeal. The vehicle is scheduled to roll out into dealerships this fall.

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Thursday, February 7, 2008, posted by Auto Rider at 6:13 PM

The i-Blue is powered by hydrogen, which experts are claiming to be the future of green vehicles. Using hydrogen as fuel means that it does not produce any amounts of greenhouse gas. According to The Auto Channel, the i-Blue Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle was developed at the automaker's Design and Technical Center located in Chiba, Japan. The automaker's development of the hydrogen-powered vehicle signals its active participation in the race to become the first automaker to mass produce hydrogen-powered vehicles.

The first two generations of the i-Blue were based on SUV platforms. The use of said platform enables the designers of the concept vehicle to have ample room to stow the components used by a hydrogen-powered vehicle. The unveiled i-Blue on the other hand has been developed using a crossover platform. This means that the automaker has overcome the need for a larger space to stow the needed components for the vehicle to run on hydrogen.

The third-generation i-Blue is powered by a fuel cell stack and an electric engine capable of producing 100 kW. Maximum speed of the vehicle is placed at a hundred miles per hour. A full tank of compressed hydrogen can power the vehicle for up to 370 miles.

The Hyundai I-Blue is a four-seat vehicle and one of its most striking features are the space age bucket seats, front and rear in the fuel cell crossover. The cockpit design is sure to gain many fans as the vehicle was designed for comfort along with its zero emissions capabilities.

The use of a crossover platform on the third-generation i-Blue also changed the position of the fuel cell stack. In the second generation i-Blue which is built around a Hyundai Tucson, the fuel cell stack is placed in the engine compartment. In the new i-Blue, the fuel cell stack is placed underneath the floor. This placement of the said component allows the new i-Blue to have a 50:50 weight distribution.

The said distribution is ideal so that the vehicle will have better agility. That means it can be easily driven as it responds better to handling than the old Tucson-based i-Blue.

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Tuesday, February 5, 2008, posted by Auto Rider at 5:12 PM

Buick is a division of General Motors and one of the vehicles under this brand is the Buick Lucerne. For 2008, Buick has already decided on the manufacturer’s suggest retail price of the Buick Lucerne Super. Buick would be selling the Lucerne Super for $39,395 and that already includes the destination freight charge of $765. Of course, you would have to decide now if you would like to own this vehicle for orders are already coming in. Buick has also announced that the vehicle would be available come April this year.

If you would be going for the standard unit, that would give you a vehicle that comes with high quality features. One of these would be the new 4.6 liter Northstar V8 engine that has the capacity to produce 292 horsepower. Aside from that, you also would find Magnetic Ride Control technology used in the vehicle as well as a premium steering system and front seats that are heated and cooled. The vehicle has also been equipped so as to be able to have windshield washer fluid which has been heated so as to help facilitate easier cleaning especially during the cold months.

Access to the vehicle has also been made easier with a remote start. This feature is factory-installed. You also get total comfort with QuietTuning - this is the brand’s technology designed so as to reduce any kind of noise from entering the cabin. For entertainment, the vehicle comes with the XM Satellite Radio.

The Buick Lucerne Super has a chrome waterfall grille as well as dual chrome exhaust tips. The unit has also been designed to ride on chrome wheels that measure some 18 inches and you can enjoy night rides under the stars for this car has a power sunroof.

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