Category Archives: Automotive

Terrafugia Transmission completes successful first flight

It doesn’t look like a Ferrari, but it sure can fly…

From Autoblog:

“Terrafugia Transmission completes successful first flight

Filed under:

Terrafugia Transmission first flight – Click above for image gallery

While only the passing of time will tell if today’s first registered flight of the Terrafugia Transmission measures up to such important milestones of aviation as the Wright brothers’ maiden voyage at Kitty Hawk in 1903, it was most definitely a significant marker in the development of the flying car. While there have been many attempts to develop a flying car in the past, the Terrafugia Transmission might be the most promising in the modern era. Autoblog first reported on it back in early 2006 when the prototype debuted, and the project spearheaded by five pilots, all of whom graduated from MIT, has come a long way since.

The Transmission transforms between road use and flight by folding down its wings, which takes just 30 seconds. With its wings retracted, the Transmission is compact enough to fit in a normal-sized garage, which means owners won’t have to rent hangar space at their local airport. Indeed, they can just drive the Transmission home, as it uses the same gas engine (of unknown displacement) to power its front wheels on the road as it does its propellor when in flight.

Today’s test flight at the Plattsburgh International Airport in New York went well with Phil Meteer, Colonel, USAFR, at the controls. Terrafugia claims the Transmission can fly up to 450 miles at over 115 mph, and since it is categorized as a Light Sport Aircraft by the FAA, a Sport Pilot license will be required to fly one. Check out the gallery below for images from today’s flight, as well as videos of Terrafugia’s own maiden voyage after the jump.

[Source: Terrafugia]

Continue reading Terrafugia Transmission completes successful first flight

Terrafugia Transmission completes successful first flight originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 18 Mar 2009 15:58:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Permalink | Email this | Comments

Leave a comment

Filed under Automotive

2010 Toyota Prius: The steering wheel wants your Touch (Tracer Display)

I like it. Great example of an improved user interface.

From Autoblog:

“2010 Toyota Prius: The steering wheel wants your Touch (Tracer Display)

Filed under: ,

There is one aspect of the 2010 Prius that AutoblogGreen didn’t highlight in its recent info overload post on the 2010 Toyota Prius: the Touch Tracer Display. There is usually nothing in front of the speedometer in most cars; we want a clear view of how fast we’re going, right? But there are also a lot of buttons on the steering wheel and constantly shifting our view from the road to the volume or temperature controls isn’t exactly a safe way to drive. To combat furtive downward glances, Toyota has come up with the TTD, which goes into action when you push the circular buttons on the steering wheel. Doing so causes little orange lights to appear on a screen that looks as if it’s hovering on top of the speedometer. The effect is definitely neat and kind of surprising the first time it happens. Once you learn to expect it, however, the feature is a great visual cue to go along with the wheel-mounted controls. Toyota says this is the “the first display system in the world to allow steering wheel controls to read out on the instrument panel.” We doubt it’ll be the last.

[Source: Toyota]

2010 Toyota Prius: The steering wheel wants your Touch (Tracer Display) originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 04 Mar 2009 19:19:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Permalink | Email this | Comments

Leave a comment

Filed under Automotive

Geneva Preview: 2010 Audi A4 allroad quattro ready for its closeup

Nice looking.

Geneva Preview: 2010 Audi A4 allroad quattro ready for its closeup: “

Filed under: , , ,

Click above for a hi-res gallery of the new Audi A4 allroad quattro<br /

>

While every other automaker was pumping out SUVs by the truckload (so to speak), Audi insisted that its wagons could offer the same benefits as a sport-ute – all wheel drive, rugged looks, cargo capacity – without the drawbacks. Ingolstadt has jumped on the sport-ute bandwagon since then, but hasn’t given up the ghost on the wagon/SUV debate. While the A6-basded allroad quattro had to hold down the fort all by itself until now, at the upcoming Geneva Motor Show, Audi will give it a kid brother based on the A4.

The Audi A4 allroad quattro is essentially an A4 Avant wagon, only beefed up for that go-anywhere look. Ground clearance is jacked up to a more commodious 180mm, while the underbody is reinforced front and rear with steel plates. Contrasting lower body cladding and flared wheel arches contribute to the off-road look, along with a unique grille, restyled rear bumper and roof rails on top of the Avant’s sleek roofline. Of course traction is provided by Audi’s trademark quattro all-wheel-drive system, putting the power down from the 211hp 2-liter TFSI, 170hp 2-liter TDI or 240hp 3-liter TDI (gas, diesel and diesel for those unfamiliar with VW Group lexicon) through the six-speed manual or seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. All the details can be found in the press release after the jump, with a gallery of high-resolution photos accessible via the thumbnails below.

[Source: Audi]

Continue reading Geneva Preview: 2010 Audi A4 allroad quattro ready for its closeup

Geneva Preview: 2010 Audi A4 allroad quattro ready for its closeup originally appeared on Autoblog on Sun, 15 Feb 2009 07:45:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Permalink‘|’Email this‘|’Comments

(Via Autoblog.)

Leave a comment

Filed under Automotive

Coming to America: Volkswagen GTI R-Series

Mmmmmm. Another item for the lottery list.

From Autoblog:

“Coming to America: Volkswagen GTI R-Series

Filed under: , ,

Click above for a gallery of the Volkswagen GTI

As good as the Volkswagen GTI is, an infusion of extra power couldn’t possibly hurt. VW’s GTI R32 was a highly refined car, but buyers quickly realized that the 3.2L VR6’s 250 horsepower was barely enough to compensate for the engine’s added weight over the standard GTI’s 2.0L turbo four and the R32’s heavy all-wheel drive system. What’s more, the R32 was short-lived; it’s no longer available for the 2009 model year. Enter the GTI R-Series.

According to Car and Driver, VW will bring the R-Series to the United States, possibly to be named R20, featuring the powerplant from the Audi S3. Expect around 270 horsepower from a high-pressure 2.0L turbo engine – a 70-horsepower improvement over the standard GTI. That power will be funneled through either a standard 6-speed stick or dual clutch DSG transmission to the front wheels. Like some other high-power front-wheel drive cars, an electronic differential will try and cope with the inevitable torque steer.

As much as we’d love to see the big 3.6L V6 engine from the Passat stuffed under the GTI’s hood, a small turbo four will likely make for a better handling package along with reasonably good fuel economy – definitely something to look forward to later this year as a 2010 model. Thanks for the tip, other man!

[Source: Car and Driver]

Coming to America: Volkswagen GTI R-Series originally appeared on Autoblog on Sun, 01 Feb 2009 09:48:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Read | Permalink | Email this | Comments

Leave a comment

Filed under Automotive