Volvo builds a 2,400-hp custom truck to crush land-speed records

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The ‘Iron Knight’ is 9,920 pounds of recording-breaking fury

Since it tips the scales at almost 10,000 pounds, you might not expect Volvo’s custom-built “Iron Knight” big rig to take on anything more than a trailer full of cargo. Instead, the 2,400-hp and 4,425 lb-ft of torque oil burner will challenge the standing 1,620-foot and 3,240-foot land speed records. Taking care of sending the immense power to the rear wheels is the relatively quick I-Shift dual-clutch automatic, which should be faster than rowing an unruly big rig transmission’s gears.

Aside from the hilarious amount of power, Volvo did as much aerodynamic cheating as possible and features a fiberglass cab, with air ducts in the side skirts to help keep the engine cool.  

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New 2017 Dodge Challenger T/A

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The Challenger T/A is back. Taking its name from the iconic model Dodge used to compete in the SCCA’s Trans-Am racing series starting in 1970, the 2017 Challenger T/A will be available in three different variants when the ordering process opens in October: T/A, T/A Plus, and T/A 392. All three sport a new hood with a massive center-mounted scoop. The hood, as well as the roof, trunklid, rear wing, body-side stripes, and fuel-filler door all are done up in satin black. Inspired by the Hellcat, the T/A has a similar ram-air design that allows air to pass through a headlamp to the engine intake, which gets a conical Mopar air filter. But whereas the 2016 Hellcat uses this airflow solution for only one of its lamps, both of the T/A’s inboard lamps feature the design, following the script written by the Challenger T/A concept from 2014. LED-illuminated T/A logos within the opening are just another reminder that this isn’t any ordinary Challenger. Old-school pins to keep the hood secured are optional. Along with the intake, Dodge also equips each and every T/A with a standard performance exhaust system. Unfortunately, both features make no measurable difference to engine output, with 5.7-liter V-8–equipped T/A and T/A Plus models producing the same 375 horsepower as their R/T kin, while the top-of-the-line T/A 392’s 6.4-liter V-8 makes the same 485 horsepower it does in other Challenger 392s. Nevertheless, we can confirm that the kit makes the car sound a hell of a lot meaner. All T/As come standard with a six-speed manual transmission, although buyers can opt for an eight-speed automatic transmission.

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Further upping the ante is the addition of Dodge’s Super Track Pak. The performance kit comes standard on all T/As and includes a suspension that’s been lowered by 0.5 inch, Bilstein shocks, high-performance brake lining, a three-mode stability-control system that can be turned off completely, and stickier tires. T/A and T/A Plus models wrap a set of Goodyear Eagle F1s around 20-by-9-inch, 12-spoke forged-aluminum Mopar wheels finished in black, while the T/A 392 relies on a set of Pirelli three-season performance tires and 20-by-9.5-inch forged-aluminum wheels, also finished in black. Inside, the T/A takes things back in time with period houndstooth cloth inserts for the front seats. T/A Plus models replace the base car’s houndstooth seats with a pair of heated and ventilated leather buckets. Plus models also add a power tilt and telescoping leather-wrapped steering wheel, an upgraded audio system, and the latest Uconnect 8.4 infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto functionality. Finally, the T/A 392 adds to the T/A Plus spec the aforementioned 6.4-liter Hemi V-8 and the wider wheels, as well as big, vented front brakes with six-piston Brembo front calipers and four-piston rears, model-specific suspension geometry, and “392” fender decals.

Dodge Unveils 2017 Charger Daytona

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The Dodge Charger Daytona is back for 2017. Last seen in the 2013 model year, the car takes its inspiration from the big-winged Charger Daytona coupe that Dodge built in 1969 for NASCAR racing. Starting at $41,235, the Charger Daytona wears front- and rear-end bodywork that mimics its SRT and R/T Scat Pack brethren; however, the Daytona plows its own styling path by including model-specific matte-black design details including a rear spoiler, roof, a “Hemi” graphic on the center-mounted hood-scoop bulge, and “Daytona” graphics on the rear quarter-panels. Like the Challenger T/A, the Daytona also will be available in a handful of retro paint hues, including Green Go and Yellow Jacket. Two Daytona models will be available: the Daytona and the Daytona 392. Dodge’s 5.7-liter V-8 powers the former, while the brand’s 6.4-liter V-8 motivates the latter. Both engines benefit from an intake capped with a Mopar conical air filter, as well as a burly exhaust system. Both are the same V-8s you’ll find in their respective non-Daytona counterparts, which make 370 and 485 horsepower in the 2016 models.

A standard eight-speed automatic transmission puts power to the ground no matter which Daytona you opt for. Keeping the performance theme intact is Dodge’s Super Track Pak, which brings a stiffer suspension, better brake linings, a three-mode stability-control system with a dedicated “off” function, and high-performance tires. Inside, the Daytona is fitted with power-adjustable, heated and cooled front seats. Gold accent stitching is used throughout the interior, including for the embroidered Daytona logos on the front seats. A Daytona badge is also present on the instrument panel. Additional kit includes a power-adjustable steering column, driver’s-seat memory, HID headlights, LED interior lighting, and rear parking sensors.

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While the Charger Daytona rides on a set of 20-by-9-inch, 12-spoke Mopar wheels finished in black, the Daytona 392 sits on a chunky set of 20-by-9.5-inch forged-aluminum wheels, also black. Other 392-specific features include “392” fender decals, a 220-amp alternator, and a 180-mph speedometer. Opting for the more powerful Daytona 392 will cost consumers $46,090, or $4855 more than the standard car. Consumers can order a Dodge Charger Daytona or Daytona 392 beginning next month.

 

2017 WORLD RALLY CARS UNCOVERED

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THE WRC IS EVOLVING. AND FROM 2017, NEW TECHNICAL REGULATIONS WILL USHER IN A FRESH AND EXCITING BREED OF WORLD RALLY CARS THAT ARE MORE POWERFUL, DISTINCTIVE AND DRAMATIC.

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The first automobile made by Karl Benz(1885-1886)

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The first stationary gasoline engine developed by Karl Benz was a one-cylinder two-stroke unit which ran for the first time on New Year’s Eve 1879. Benz had so much commercial success with this engine that he was able to devote more time to his dream of creating a lightweight car powered by a gasoline engine, in which the chassis and engine formed a single unit.

The major features of the two-seater vehicle, which was completed in 1885, were the compact high-speed single-cylinder four-stroke engine installed horizontally at the rear, the tubular steel frame, the differential and three wire-spoked wheels. The engine output was 0.75 hp (0.55 kW). Details included an automatic intake slide, a controlled exhaust valve, high-voltage electrical vibrator ignition with spark plug, and water/thermo siphon evaporation cooling.

On January 29, 1886, Benz applied for a patent for his “vehicle powered by a gas engine.” The patent – number 37435 – may be regarded as the birth certificate of the automobile. In July 1886 the newspapers reported on the first public outing of the three-wheeled Benz Patent Motor Car, model no. 1.

Long-distance journey by Bertha Benz (1888)

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Using an improved version and without her husband’s knowledge, Benz’s wife Bertha and their two sons Eugen (15) and Richard (14) embarked on the first long-distance journey in automotive history on an August day in 1888. The route included a few detours and took them from Mannheim to Pforzheim, her place of birth. With this journey of 180 kilometers including the return trip Bertha Benz demonstrated the practicality of the motor vehicle to the entire world. Without her daring – and that of her sons – and the decisive stimuli that resulted from it, the subsequent growth of Benz & Cie. in Mannheim to become the world’s largest automobile plant of its day would have been unthinkable.

Double-pivot steering, contra engine, planetary gear transmission (1891 – 1897)

2008dig1668-w385xh0It was Karl Benz who had the double-pivot steering system patented in 1893, thereby solving one of the most urgent problems of the automobile. The first Benz with this steering system was the three-hp (2.2-kW) Victoria in 1893, of which slightly larger numbers with different bodies were built. The world’s first production car with some 1200 units built was the Benz Velo of 1894, a lightweight, durable and inexpensive compact car.

1897 saw the development of the “twin engine” consisting of two horizontal single-cylinder units in parallel, however this proved unsatisfactory. It was immediately followed by a better design, the “contra engine” in which the cylinders were arranged opposite each other. This was the birth of the horizontally-opposed piston engine. Always installed at the rear by Benz until 1900, this unit generated up to 16 hp (12 kW) in various versions.

Marquez says Ducati one-two “the good thing” about Austria

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MotoGP points leader Marc Marquez says Ducati taking first and second was the “good thing” about the Austrian Grand Prix, as main rivals Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi could only finish third and fourth.

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2016 G-Power BMW X5 M Typhoon with 750hp

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German tuning company G-Power has applied their know-how to the F85 BMW X5 M, installing an aggressive widebody kit and backing the looks up with upgrades for the SUV’s 4.4-litre twin-turbocharged V8.

G-Power’s ‘Typhoon’ widebody kit consists of fender flares, new front and rear bumpers, a carbon fiber hood and side skirts. The rear bumper frames quad-outlet exhaust 102mm exhaust pipes, which are offered along with G-Power’s full titanium exhaust system. Housed in the widened wheel arches are lightweight aluminum ‘Hurricane RR’ 23-inch wheels, which are available in three different colour finishes. The wheels are also available in smaller 21-inch size.

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The 575 horsepower twin-turbo V8 has been upgraded with new compressor wheels for the turbochargers, which are larger and more efficient than the stock units. The exhaust turbine has also been upgraded for reduced exhaust gas pressure and higher boost pressures and is joined by new stainless steel downpipes. These upgrades bring output to 750 horsepower and 980 Nm, G-Power says.