Tesla Model S costs one nickel per drag race

2012 tesla model s 628 1371232293 300x199  Tesla Model S costs one nickel per drag raceHistorically, the intersection between electric vehicles and drag racing has been really small – or so we guess, at least. But the advent of Tesla in the auto marketplace, and the subsequent performance offered up to drivers by way of battery-powered cars, has caused even racy publications like DragTimes to get in on the action.

Having posted several YouTube videos featuring the Tesla Model S doing pulls at the local strip, DragTimes encountered questions about just how many races that car might be able to run before needing to re-juice its battery pack.

The publication monitored the energy being used by the Tesla during full-throttle, quarter-mile runs, and determined that the net use (after energy from the regen braking was added back in) amounted to just 0.5 kWh per go. Considering that the full battery capacity is 85 kWh, DragTimes figured that the Model S is good for a remarkable 170 races before needing a recharge. By that math, and using electricity costs in DragTime’s home state of Florida, each race would cost just a nickel and a penny’s worth of electricity. read more »

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Chevy Silverado, GMC Sierra full configurators truck in

628x356x2014 chevrolet silverado.jpg.pagespeed.ic . AVHDoiajC 300x170 Chevy Silverado, GMC Sierra full configurators truck inYou can now put prices to your wildest option-sheet dreams of the 2014 Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra. A microsite for the full-size pickup truck twins has been up since January, and now the full-blown configurator is live and ready to take your virtual orders.

The only two chassis configurations available at the moment are the Crew Cab with either a short or standard bed – Regular and Double Cab versions will come later. In Silverado flavors that will run you $32,710 for the short box, $33,010 for the standard box, while the Sierra adds a $1,500 premium to both of those prices, and destination and handling for both models adds another $995.

Since these are American pickups the list of modifications is lengthy, but we added $11,450 in just two steps by starting with the Silverado Crew Cab and standard bed, then checking four-wheel drive and the LTZ Z71 package. Our final truck, resplendent in Brownstone Metallic paint, heated and cooled Cocoa/Dune perforated leather seating and tasty details like chrome recovery hooks, and engine block heater and LED cargo box lighting, rang up $57,285 at the candy store. read more »

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Ford Fusion demand outstripping supply

628x417x03a 2013 ford fusion fd 1371223170.jpg.pagespeed.ic .9wWuM6aDfT 300x199  Ford Fusion demand outstripping supply The attractive new 2013 Ford Fusion has done wonders for the brand in the highly competitive midsize sedan segment – the vehicle is up nearly 22 percent compared to last year. But that sales momentum may soon hold steady due to low inventory levels of the new Fusion across the United States.

According to a report in The Detroit News, citing automotive data and Ward’s Auto, Ford currently has a 39-day supply of the Fusion. That might sound fine, but a normally healthy average is about a 60-day supply. If Ford were to stop production on the Fusion today, there would only be enough vehicles available to get through another five weeks of sales, according to the News.

Currently, Ford produces the Fusion at its three-shift assembly plant in Hermosillo, Mexico, and will add production at its facility in Flat Rock, MI later this year. A Ford spokesperson told The Detroit News that when Flat Rock production comes online, the automaker will need to rush new stock out to the regions with the most demand for the Fusion. Ford has doubled its coastal retail market share, with huge amounts of growth in areas like Los Angeles, San Francisco and Miami, the News reports. read more »

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Ram recalls 30k trucks over faulty turn signals

03 2013 ram 3500 hd fd 300x199  Ram recalls 30k trucks over faulty turn signals According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Chrysler is issuing a recall of 30,197 pickup trucks in the United States, all from the 2013 model year. The affected vehicles are the Ram 1500, 2500 and 3500, all of which were built between September 9, 2012 and March 5, 2013.

The problem affects models equipped with “optional premium taillamps,” and according to NHTSA, the turn signal indicator “may not flash at a double rate to give a notification to the driver of a turn signal malfunction.” The report states that if a driver is unaware of a problem with the turn signals and continues to use them as normal, other vehicles on the road may not be alerted that the vehicle is turning, which increases the risk of a crash.

Other recall woes have affected the Ram line recently. In April, we reported that Ram 1500 models were being recalled due to an improper adjustment of the parking brake cable, and several thousand Heavy Duty models were being called in for engine covers that do not have as much heat resistance as they’re supposed to. read more »

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2014 Cadillac CTS starts $7k higher than last model at $46,025*

628x417x2014 cadillac cts.jpg.pagespeed.ic .ZJ3clp8noz 300x199  2014 Cadillac CTS starts $7k higher than last model at $46,025* The redesigned 2014 Cadillac CTS will be more powerful, stylish and luxurious than its predecessor, but it will also be much more expensive. With a new starting price of $46,025 (*including $925 for destination), the 2014 CTS represents a price increase of more than $7,000 compared to the 2013 model, but it should be more appropriately sized and equipped to take on rivals like the BMW 5 Series and Mercedes-Benz E-Class, which start at $47,800 and $51,900, respectively.

Available trim levels – referred to as Collections – include Luxury, Performance and Premium, offering either a 2.0-liter turbocharged inline four-cylinder or a 3.6-liter V6 and the choice of either rear- or all-wheel-drive configurations. For more performance, the all-new CTS Vsport model will have an asking price of $59,995. This 420-horsepower model is more powerful than both the BMW 550i and Mercedes E550 and about $2,000 less expensive than both.

There’s still no word on what Cadillac has in store for a next-gen CTS-V sedan, but we’re guessing power and price will both rise considerably. Scroll down for more info on the 2014 CTS that is set to go on sale this fall. read more »

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Bentley releases new details on Continental GT3 racer

628x359xbentley continental gt3.jpg.pagespeed.ic .B8AnE04PyJ 300x171  Bentley releases new details on Continental GT3 racer Porsche’s new LMP1 Prototype isn’t the only motorsports news coming out of Volkswagen AG this week. After unveiling its new Continental GT3 at the Paris Motor Show last year, Bentley has released some new images and details as this racecar continues its development. Similar to the Porsche announcement, Bentley’s new GT3 marks a significant return to motorsports, only in this case, Bentley hasn’t raced a car since 2003 – a winning effort at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

From street to race form, the Continental has dropped about 2,200 pounds by shedding many of the luxury and tech features that make the street-legal Continental GT the car that it is – including 50(!) electronic control units. The Continental GT3 uses the same 4.0-liter, twin-turbo V8 as the road car, but we’re guessing output has been tweaked a bit from the standard 500 horsepower. Except for the carbon fiber hood, decklid and doors, Bentley says that the body of the GT3 is a direct carryover from the Continental GT.

Inside, even a stripped interior and full roll cage won’t stop Bentley from being Bentley as it gives this racecar the same attention to detail as its road cars – the seats, steering wheel and door pulls all receiving the hand-crafted treatment from the factory in Crewe. There is no word as to when the Continental GT3 will make its racing debut, but more details about the car can be found below in the official press release. read more »

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Holden launches tuned, pre-facelifted Malibu in Australia

2013 holden malibu 628 300x195  Holden launches tuned, pre facelifted Malibu in Australia As General Motors prepares to launch a refreshed 2014 Chevrolet Malibu in the US, the current, year-old version of the car will go on sale in Australia as the Holden Malibu. Rather than just making it right-hand drive and putting new badges on the Malibu for Aussie duty, Holden engineers worked on the sedan’s drivetrain and suspension to give it a tuning unique to that market.

It seems like one of the biggest challenges was getting the Holden Malibu to drive smoothly on Australian roads, and GM’s crew Down Under accomplished this by retuning the suspension’s damping calibration, as well as giving the car proper right-hand-drive tires.

Yes, apparently tires designed for a left-hand-drive car would cause the Malibu to pull “excessively to the left,” according to GM’s press release. Engine choices for the Holden Malibu are the 2.4-liter gasoline four-cylinder or a 2.0-liter diesel I4. read more »

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2013 Hennessey VelociRaptor 600 SUV

628x417xhennesesy velociraptor suv fd.jpg.pagespeed.ic .4C20sg5jKe 300x199  2013 Hennessey VelociRaptor 600 SUV Each of those words are synonyms for big and bold – combine all four and you’ve got one of the largest, most powerful and robust street-going sport utility vehicles in the world.

John Hennessey is a Texas-based tuner known for creating some of the fastest and most capable cars on the planet. Over the past two decades, machines like the Viper Venom 550, Ford GT 1000 Twin Turbo, HPE 700 LS9 Camaro and the almighty Venom GT have emerged from the Hennessey Performance garage. And those are just the celebrated flagships; the company has modified thousands of other street cars including those from Audi, Bentley, Cadillac, Ferrari, Ford, Porsche and Toyota, to name a few.

Now, after tuning countless Ford F-150 SVT Raptor pickups and fielding multiple requests, the company has created something unique to fill a void in the performance-oriented sport utility segment. It is called the Hennessey VelociRaptor SUV, and Autoblog was recently handed the keys to the very first example to hit the pavement. read more »

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2013 Shelby GT350

2013 shelby gt350 fd 300x199  2013 Shelby GT350 Shelby is a name as synonymous with the Ford Mustang as marshmallows are with campfires. But unlike the short-lived sugary confection that is prepared on a stick, the late Carroll Shelby’s name on the placard means added performance and exclusivity. Launched in 1965, the automaker’s celebrated early cars were in production for a limited run – today, a mint concours-quality 1965 Shelby GT350 can sell for upwards of $350,000.

To coincide with the 45th anniversary of the original Shelby GT350, Shelby American reintroduced the GT350 in 2011. Like the original, it was only offered in white with blue stripes. Customers were offered a choice between naturally aspirated (440 horsepower) and two levels of supercharging (525 horsepower with a warranty or 624 horsepower without). The manufacturer calls the GT350 a “post-title” package, a term that means it starts out life as a stock Mustang and is modified outside Ford’s factory (this is in contrast to the Shelby GT500, which is a standard Ford production car). read more »

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2013 Hyundai Elantra GT

2013 hyundai elantra gt review 300x199  2013 Hyundai Elantra GT If ever there were an award for the most bastardized label in the automotive world, the Gran Turismo/Grand Touring/GT moniker would be an easy frontrunner. Once reserved solely for sporty coupes, the GT letters have taken a big hit over the years, but things got downright embarrassing with the BMW 5 Series Gran Turismo. For 2013, Hyundai is helping to muddy the waters even further by slapping a GT badge onto the hatchback version of its top-selling model, the Elantra.

In the case of the 2013 Hyundai Elantra GT, though, this name is just recycling the Elantra GT name from the early 2000s, albeit on a more stylish, modern and all-around better five-door. Hyundai has created quite a competitive lineup since its Fluidic Sculpture design language hit the market, but one area that it has paled in comparison to rival automakers is in the hatchback department. With a plethora of budget-minded compact cars currently on sale, Hyundai now finds itself in the unique position of being the only automaker to offer a compact sedan, coupe and hatchback with the 2013 Elantra. Still, with the compact segment more crowded than a public school classroom, we spent a week with the new Elantra GT to see how it stacks up against the hatchback competition. read more »

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