Thursday, June 28, 2007
Auto Skills Contest Won By California Students

Austin Castro and Daniel Lehmkuhl, both students of San Luis Obispo High School of California, topped the 2007/AAA Student Auto Skills National Finals competition which took place at the Ford World Headquarters last Tuesday. The two grabbed the top prize by finishing the task in a span of 49 minutes. They had a great start by figuring out the problem and fixing it in no time.

“We felt fairly relaxed during the competition,” Lehmkuhl said. “It was just us against the car.”

They have outwitted the 49 teams from different schools across the US. The California boys were given $2,500 general education scholarships apiece from Ford and AAA. They were allowed to choose from any technical colleges with their full scholarship. The boys have gone through hard work and practice before they achieved the ultimate prize. They were assisted by Daniel Lehmkuhl’s father, Jeff Lehmkuhl. The trophy will be handed over to the San Luis Obispo High School.

"Daniel and Austin proved they are America's most auto-savvy teens," said Allan Stanley, the manager of Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills. "Their hard work and drive to be the top high school auto technicians is typical of all of the participants in the competition. The auto industry must attract such dedicated young people to keep America's vehicles operating safely and trouble-free."

"The additional training these young contestants will receive in technical colleges can open many doors for them at Ford and in our dealer network, paving the way to lucrative automotive careers," said Frank Ligon, the director, Service Engineering Operations, Ford Customer Service Division.

"This is a great time to embark on an automotive service career," Ligon added, explaining that the already high demand for skilled workers will grow as the number of vehicles continues to rise, more alternative fuel and hybrid vehicles requiring new skills enter the marketplace, and older auto tech workers retire.

The Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills competition covered the requirement for diagnostic and problem-solving skills, electronics awareness, mathematics and mechanical ability to understand how to repair progressively more technology-driven vehicles.

"These competitors represent America's best and brightest automotive students," said John Nielsen, the director of the AAA Approved Auto Repair program. "All will showcase their talents in Dearborn, then, we hope, go onto further training to prepare for the important job of keeping America's cars on the road and in good repair."

Here are the runner-ups of the Student Auto Skills Challenge:

  • 2nd Place - Michigan, Alex Dobroy and Zachary Hastings. Instructor: Tim Timoszyk. Saline High School, Saline.
  • 3rd Place - Colorado, Eric Hess and Christopher Wu. Instructor: Brad Wheaton. Doherty High School, Colorado Springs.
  • 4th Place - North Carolina. Evan Martin and Kyle Wishlinski. Instructor: Martin Page. Lake Norman High School, Mooresville.
  • 5th Place - Virginia. Douglas Dunn and Gaetano Guiffre. Instructor: Scott Freeman. Fauquier High School, Warrenton.
posted by Car Addict @ 12:12 AM  
Friday, June 22, 2007
2009 Vectra as the Newest Opel Flagship

Got the newest spy shots from the soon to be flagship of Opel? If not, take a break because those folks over at World Car Fans have captured the latest picture of what they're claiming to be the next Opel flagship – the 2009 Vectra.

Based on the May 2007 article from World Car Fans, General Motors’ European arm will be reducing the production of the Signum hatchback and the Opel Tigra Twin Top by the middle of next year due to unsuccessful and boring sales which is was quite far from their projected profit.

Those are the factors that lead the way for the production of the next generation Vectra sedan. Actually before, there were just hearsays but now, given the latest photos, no one can question that soon the vehicle will be released. The German plant already announced that customers will be expecting the said vehicle soon in dealerships. It would be entering production by the second half of next year.

According to the folks at the site that's for the fan of cars from across the world, the new Vectra shares wider and taller body to provide more space inside for the passengers and with a complete styling all along, plus the power that will be coming from a wider selection of new engines including a 200 HP 2.7 liter V 6 Turbodiesel and a newly developed 2.8 liter V 8 fuel engines. The said larger body is just a way for the model to cling to sales on the market and to have a better status on its competitor brands like Volkswagen’s Passat and the Alfa Romeo 159.

Other high-flying features that have been carried over from the concept car are the large grille, angular headlights and a pronounced boot line. Before the cars formally establish its sales towards the end of the year as a 2009 model, it should come off at the 2008 Geneva Motor Show. It was considered that the car will also substitute the present Saturn Aura sedan in the US towards the end of the decade. But prior to that, another concept car is thought to have been exposed at this year’s Frankfurt Show this autumn which is closer to the production version.

Seems to be a busy year for General Motors. Anyway, let’s all wish these guys good luck. After all, we hope to see more endearing car models coupled with promising features and attractive profit sales in dealerships.

posted by Car Addict @ 1:19 AM  
2009 Vectra as the Newest Opel Flagship

Got the newest spy shots from the soon to be flagship of Opel? If not, take a break because those folks over at World Car Fans have captured the latest picture of what they're claiming to be the next Opel flagship – the 2009 Vectra.

Based on the May 2007 article from World Car Fans, General Motors’ European arm will be reducing the production of the Signum hatchback and the Opel Tigra Twin Top by the middle of next year due to unsuccessful and boring sales which is was quite far from their projected profit.

Those are the factors that lead the way for the production of the next generation Vectra sedan. Actually before, there were just hearsays but now, given the latest photos, no one can question that soon the vehicle will be released. The German plant already announced that customers will be expecting the said vehicle soon in dealerships. It would be entering production by the second half of next year.

According to the folks at the site that's for the fan of cars from across the world, the new Vectra shares wider and taller body to provide more space inside for the passengers and with a complete styling all along, plus the power that will be coming from a wider selection of new engines including a 200 HP 2.7 liter V 6 Turbodiesel and a newly developed 2.8 liter V 8 fuel engines. The said larger body is just a way for the model to cling to sales on the market and to have a better status on its competitor brands like Volkswagen’s Passat and the Alfa Romeo 159.

Other high-flying features that have been carried over from the concept car are the large grille, angular headlights and a pronounced boot line. Before the cars formally establish its sales towards the end of the year as a 2009 model, it should come off at the 2008 Geneva Motor Show. It was considered that the car will also substitute the present Saturn Aura sedan in the US towards the end of the decade. But prior to that, another concept car is thought to have been exposed at this year’s Frankfurt Show this autumn which is closer to the production version.

Seems to be a busy year for General Motors. Anyway, let’s all wish these guys good luck. After all, we hope to see more endearing car models coupled with promising features and attractive profit sales in dealerships.

posted by Car Addict @ 1:19 AM  
Saturday, June 16, 2007
Land Rover and Jaguar for Possible Sale

What else is new? I guess the Ford Motor Company is expecting this to happen. Few months ago, before the British brand Aston Martin was sold, they have admitted that they are expecting more falls this year. Like more job cuts, declines on sales, the closure of production plants, and more car brands to be sold. Maybe this was the thing they are talking about. Too bad, they failed to gain back the second spot on the Big Three as they are now found on the third rank.

And as a part of its Way Forward plan, Land Rover and Jaguar have been possibly set up for sale. But they still have yet to reveal plans about Volvo. Volvo has been noted to be the top seller among the Premier Automotive Group (PAG).

The news has been spreading all over Europe these days. Ford is possibly selling Land Rover and Jaguar when some of the officials were quoted saying they are still "exploring all options." That was the statement delivered by Dieter Zetsche, the Chief Executive Officer of DaimlerChrysler, when he observed that the Chrysler group has been swaying like a limbo on sales.

There are speculations that these luxury British car brands are selling between $1.5 billion to $8 billion. However, the company does not break out the particular financial figures of these brands that belong to its Premier Automotive Group. Ford realizes that its Land Rover has been continuously gaining profits while the Jaguar brand is slowly becoming non-profitable. On the first quarter sales, most of the pretax profits were coming from its fellow PAG member Volvo that amounts to a total of over $400 million.

And just before these news get into almost everybody’s knowledge, Fiat was rumored to have been talking to Ford about its interest in buying the Jaguar brand on the previous month. But it seems like Fiat lost its interest in buying Jaguar because of its money-losing reputation. According to the Italian brand they wouldn’t risk buying a brand that could put an unlikable reputation on its credit rating.

However, private firms like Cinven, Blackstone and Cerberus expressed interest in bidding for these two members of PAG as released by a newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine. But the British press focused much on the reports that the Alchemy, a buyout firm in UK, is also interested in both Jaguar and Land Rover.

The James Bond favorite car Aston Martin was sold to a private-equity consortium headed by David Richards earlier this year. Will these two brands be next?

posted by Car Addict @ 12:46 AM  
Monday, June 11, 2007
Drifting Is Here

For those who watched the movie “The Fast and The Furious: Tokyo Drift”, they have seen the newest motorsport to capture the imagination of car fans. It’s called drifting and in this contest, it’s not how fast you can go but how well can you control your car.

According to Wikipedia, “Drifting refers to a driving technique and to a sport based on the technique… A car is said to be drifting when the rear slip angle is greater than the front slip angle, and the front wheels are pointing in the opposite direction to the turn (e.g. car is turning left, wheels are pointed right), and the driver is controlling these factors.”

While this might give you an idea of what the sport is all about, you will never know the thrill of the sport unless you try it. For a more detailed explanation of the new sport, one site has this to say: “Basically, drifting is getting your car sideways down a road. It doesn't sound very hard does it? Sounds a lot like power sliding huh? Well it isn't. It's much more complex. Instead of a drifter causing a drift and then countering to straighten out, he will instead over-counter so his car goes into another drift. That is the reason many drifters do it in the mountains, because there are many sharp turns strung together. So in essence a good drifter has the ability to take five or six opposing turns without having traction at any point in time.”

The site tells you what you want to know about this new sport including which cars are commonly used in drifting. With regards to that the site tells us that: “There are seven cars most commonly used for drifting. The first is the AE86 Levin/Trueno (referred to as a Hachi-Roku), because of its rear wheel drive lay-out and the fact that it's relatively inexpensive it is probably the most common drifting car. The second and third are the Silvia S13 and S14, which come in two different models: the turbocharged K's and the non-turbo Q's. Because of their high horse power and free-revving engines they are excellent drifting cars. The third is the 180SX, related mechanically to the Silvia, the only difference is in the body style and the fact that is lighter and has a better front/rear balance ratio. The fifth is the FC3S RX-7. I believe that this would be a more popular pick among drifters if it was not as problematic as it is. The Cefiro is another excellent drifting car. It has a powerful RB20DET engine and good handling characteristics. The last is the Laurel which is also powered by the RB20DET.”

For those really interested about this sport, check out this site. I’m already a fan of this sport yet I still learned a lot from the guys behind that site.

posted by Car Addict @ 11:38 PM  
Wednesday, June 6, 2007
The Fastest Cat, And Its Not A Jaguar

For most of us, a car is only as good as its 0-60 time. If you are like me who thinks that an engine produces the loveliest sound in the world, you are in for a treat as we look at the fastest cat in the world. No, it is not a Jaguar but a cat with American and British flags painted on the side. It’s a cat from hell known as the Melling Hellcat.

The supercar is designed by British engine expert Al Melling. The resume of Mr. Melling includes designing the Jaguar engine which helped the team win four races at the prestigious 24 Hours of Le Mans. He said that he is aiming to enter a team at the famous endurance race. Then came along the Melling Hellcat, Mr. Melling claimed that the sale of the car will enable him to enter the endurance race.

The Hellcat is the first car ever designed by the British engineer. Its powerplant is a V10 with billet aluminum milled engine block and cylinder heads. The said car’s engine is stowed in its front under the sleek hood. A rear-wheel drive car, the Hellcat is expected to produce 1,175 horsepower, topping the Veyron’s 1,001 horsepower claim. That much power is made possible by the four turbochargers mated to the massive engine of the car.

According to this site, here are the specs of the Hellcat. I will just give you a few to whet your appetite:

  • Engine: 75° V10, 5900cc, petrol
  • Installation: Longitudinal, front/mid, rwd
  • Made of: Aluminum alloy billets
  • Bore and stroke: 93 mm and 88.15 mm
  • Induction: 4 turbos, 2 intercoolers
  • (normally aspirated restrictor)*
  • Valvetrain: DOHC per bank, 40v
  • Camshaft drive: Gear and duplex chain
  • Lubrication system: Dry sump


The car is reported to have a 0-60 mph time of less than three seconds. With that capability under the Hellcat’s paw, it is a strong contender to the land speed record set by the Bugatti Veyron.

The Hellcat though is for those who are looking for a pure supercar. That means it does not have the amenities of say an Audi or a Mercedes-Benz or a BMW. It has no CD player, no air conditioner, no heater nor even a no radio. This car is truly not for those looking for luxury features on a supercar. This car is made to be driven at high speed and that’s what exactly it does. And it does it well. Really well.
posted by Car Addict @ 12:02 AM  
Friday, June 1, 2007
Porsche 911 Turbo in My Dreams

We all have our dream cars and no matter how ambitious we get, there are no limits to our dreams and hopes! Because dreaming costs nothing - it’s all free! Anyway, I just like to share my thoughts about my dream car which is the Porsche 911 Turbo. I know you’re all familiar with it and there are no arguments when we say that the 911 Turbo is one of the top cars of all time!

Here are the reasons why the 911 Turbo is one of the greatest and why is it my dream ride:

  • Cylinders: Manual- 6/Triptonic S- 6
  • Displacement 3.6 liters/ 3.6 liters
  • Engine-layout Rear engine /Rear engine
  • Horsepower 480 hp /480 hp
  • Torque 460 lb.-ft. 460 lb.-ft. at rpm 1,950 /5,000 rpm 1,950 - 5,000 rpm
  • Torque (Overboost) 505 lb.-ft. (With optional Sport Chrono Turbo Package) 505 lb.-ft. (With optional Sport Chrono Turbo Package) at rpm (Overboost) 2,100 - 4,000 rpm (With optional Sport Chrono Turbo Package) 2,100 - 4,000 rpm (With optional Sport Chrono Turbo Package)
  • Compression ratio 9.0:1/ 9.0:1
  • Technology Variable Turbine Geometry (VTG)
  • Actively controlled all-wheel drive, Porsche Traction Management (PTM)
  • 3.6 liter flat 6 cylinder engine with VarioCam Plus
  • Transmission 6-Speed manual transmission


Everyday of my life I dreamt of having this amazing ride where I can drive it wherever I want to. I know this dream can be possible, and one day it’ll just come! All we need is money to get our dream cars and make it a reality, right? So there’s no reason for us dreamers to lose hope. I mean we are just thousands of dollars away from our fantasies.

What am I saying?

Anyway, it’s nice to have a goal in life - something to look forward to each and everyday and a reason to keep believing and dreaming. A reason to strive harder to achieve what we always wanted and I’m going to have a Porsche 911 Turbo one day! Let’s hope for the best…
posted by Car Addict @ 12:07 AM  
About Me


Name: Car Addict
Home:
About Me:
See my complete profile

Google
Previous Post
Archives
Links
Template By
Free Blogger Templates