Tag Archives: Technology

Toyota’s 86 860 Special Edition promises pure driving pleasure

Want to see the future of car technology?

Brian Cooley found it for you at CES 2017 in Las Vegas and the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

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Toyota i-TRIL concept is made for quick turns video

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Pagani Huayra Roadster: Roofless V12 elegance video

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2017 GMC Sierra HD Release Date, Price and Specs

Sitting around a fire pit in Moab, Utah, a fellow journalist described the adventure he’d had that day in the 2017 GMC Sierra heavy-duty pickup truck. It involved missing a turn, getting stuck in a mud bog and coming into the designated lunch spot on the dirt instead of the pavement.

My first thought: Some guys have all the luck.

GMC had flown me to Moab to sample the 2017 Sierra in the luxury-oriented Denali trim. Even though my day was much more predictable than my colleague’s, I still enjoyed my time in the big truck.

2017 GMC Sierra HD

The GMC Sierra HD makes it easy to get off the beaten path.


GMC

Although the truck comes standard with a gas-powered 6.0-liter V8, I drove the new 6.6-liter Duramax turbo diesel V8. Paired with an Allison six-speed automatic transmission, the new powertrain has more power and torque than the outgoing model, all while producing 35 percent fewer emissions. The diesel has 445 horsepower on tap with a whopping 910 pound-feet of tough-as-nails diesel torque.

The first thing I noticed was the near lack of diesel chatter in the cabin. Every once in awhile I heard the engine’s low rumbling, but by and large it is quiet and refined.

GMC’s drive route took me from Moab to the mountain resort town of Telluride, Colorado. The truck handled the twisty mountain roads like a champ. The hydraulic power steering returns easily to center and offers all the feedback you could want in a truck. The independent front suspension helps the Sierra HD feel smooth on the pavement, and its automatic locking rear differential helps out in any off-road situations.

2017 GMC Sierra HD: Big, beefy and bustin’…
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2017 GMC Sierra HD

2017 GMC Sierra HD

2017 GMC Sierra HD

2017 GMC Sierra HD

2017 GMC Sierra HD

2017 GMC Sierra HD

Acceleration on the Sierra feels quick and powerful. I never felt like I had to urge the truck to accelerate and passing proved easy, even on steep mountain passes.

On the whole, this truck is a very easy, very comfortable ride. Leather abounds in the Denali model and heated and cooled seats keep your rear end at optimal temperature. The pedals are adjustable so even the most diminutive of truck enthusiasts should have no problem finding the right seating configuration. The front seats have access to two USB ports, two 12V ports and two 110-volt outlets. Unfortunately the rear passengers in this crew cab truck have to make due with just one USB port.

This truck is made for towing

The Denali model is only available in a crew cab with the standard 6.5-foot box for the 2500 model or the 8-foot box on the 3500. Your choice of model depends on your towing needs. The 3500 pulls 20,000 pounds on a ball hitch, 7,000 pounds more than the 2500 can handle.

During this drive event, I sampled a 2500 with an open trailer full of ATVs and a side-by-side. The Sierra towed the toys like it wasn’t no thang, and I had to constantly remind myself of the 12 extra feet or so behind me. The Sierra has plenty of available cameras to help you see what’s going on in the rear, including a view that automatically displays when you signal a turn. If you cut a turn too shallow you can see exactly how close your rear wheel is to the curb or monitor your position in the lane with just the push of a button.

2017 GMC Sierra HD

The GMC Sierra 3500 HD can tow 22,900 pounds on a fifth wheel.


GMC

Going up a steep grade with a trailer is one thing, coming down is quite another. To preserve its brakes, the Sierra HD’s Tow/Haul mode keeps the transmission in a low gear, slowing the truck and trailer significantly. The truck’s standard exhaust braking, engaged with a button on the console, creates back pressure to keep the engine speed slow. Between the Tow/Haul mode and the exhaust braking, I didn’t have to touch the brakes at all going down hill.

The Sierra HD has all the tech we’ve come to expect from a GM product. Its Wi-Fi hotspot, powered by a 4G LTE data connection, found a signal where my ATT phone could not. The Intellilink system is very easy to use, with large tiles, a quick responding 8-inch touchscreen and an intuitive interface. As a bonus, Intellilink also comes standard with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. New for this year is the Teen Driver technology. It lets parents, or snoopy spouses, monitor the driving of their loved one, reporting on such behaviors as maximum speed and any emergency braking incidents. The Denali also gets standard wireless charging and a standard remote locking tailgate.

2017 GMC Sierra HD

The Sierra HD comes with the easy-to-use Intellilink infotainment system.


GMC

There are a few driver’s aids on the Sierra, though some of the competition does better. Lane departure warning, forward collision alert, and front and rear park assist are all standard. Also included is the safety alert seat, which buzzes the driver’s seat bottom to warn of any lane wandering or parking hazards.

Absent, however is any kind of adaptive cruise control. Not that I would want to let the truck have that kind of control when towing, but it’s always nice to have when unladen and in traffic. The Ford Super Duty has it, and GMC would be well-advised to add adaptive cruise control for 2018.

Special edition Sierra

I also got a chance to sample the limited-edition All Terrain X series. It’s essentially an appearance package for the Sierra HD 2500 aimed at off-road folks, although there are a few meaty changes that push the All Terrain X toward the dirt. It gets the Z71 off-road suspension package from GMC’s brand cousin Chevrolet as well as skid plates and some aggressive tires. There is a sport bar mounted in the bed, to which you can add LED lights, available as an accessory, but it’s so far back you’ll mostly be lighting up your roof instead of the road ahead. Take my advice and mount your lights in the front grill. You’ll thank me as soon as you find yourself in the middle of nowhere with no ambient light.

2017-sierra-hd-offroad4.jpg

Of course there’s a special edition.


Emme Hall/Roadshow

However, the rear differential still locks on its own when it senses a low-traction situation, so the driver doesn’t have any control over it. The chin spoiler in the front hinders the approach angle and without a lift, there isn’t much travel. It’s an off-road truck made for slow-going through mud and sand, not for flat-out whoop running or changes in terrain.

If you need a truck with plenty of towing capability that can also double as a daily driver, the 2017 GMC Sierra HD should be on your short list. Both the Sierra HD Denali 2500 and 3500 start at just under $55,400, but you’ll have to add $9,255 for the optional 6.6-liter Duramax diesel V8 engine. It’s pricey for sure, but that’s a bit less than the starting price for a similarly equipped Ram 2500 or 3500.

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All the electric and pedal ride-on cars from the NY Toy Fair

Want to see the future of car technology?

Brian Cooley found it for you at CES 2017 in Las Vegas and the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

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What to expect from the 2017 Geneva Motor Show

Update, March 2: Added more cars and updated information to the list.

Geneva plays host to one of the most interesting auto shows of the year, where supercars and conceptual masterpieces play alongside far more pedestrian offerings. This year looks to be no different, but before the show kicks off in the second week of March, let’s give you a refresher on what to expect.

Alpine A110

Alpine never made a name for itself in the US, outside of hardcore motorsports fans and Gran Turismo junkies. But that doesn’t make its return any less exciting!

Alpine is set to debut its first production car since the 1990s at the Geneva show, and it’s looking quite promising. This Renault subsidiary promises a midengine, rear-wheel-drive sports coupe with proportions familiar to fans of the storied marque. And judging by the initial pictures we’ve seen, it’s living up to those promises.

It might come to the US, or it might not, but no matter what, it’ll probably end up in another racing game sooner or later.

Alpine A110Enlarge Image

It’s nice to see something new in the somewhat-affordable, mid-engine sports car segment.


Renault

BMW 5 Series Touring

Do you like wagons? Do you like lusting over wagons you’ll probably never see in the US? Then this one’s for you, bud.

BMW will debut its 5 Series Touring station wagon at Geneva this year. It’s basically the exact same as the 5 Series sedan, but with extra junk in the trunk, so you can store more, um, junk in your trunk. It arrives in Europe with four different engines — two gas, and two diesel. Were it to come to the US, those diesels probably won’t hitch a ride across the pond.

There’s no word yet on whether or not BMW will add the M5 to its Touring lineup, and we probably have a ways to go before we find out, because the M5 sedan hasn’t even been announced yet. But here’s hoping!

BMW 5 Series Touring

Ferrari 812 Superfast

With a name like Superfast, would you expect the latest Ferrari to be anything but? The successor to the F12 Berlinetta, the 812 Superfast packs a 6.5-liter V12 producing 789 horsepower and 530 pound-feet of torque. It’s Ferrari’s most powerful V12 to date.

It also packs electric power steering — a first for Ferrari — as well as four-axle steering. Its intake geometry is variable, as well, just like naturally aspirated Formula 1 engines. This might be a car for driving enjoyment, but it still makes good use of new tech.

Ferrari 812 Superfast

Ford Fiesta / Fiesta ST

Look out, hot hatch aficionados, there’s a new FiST in town.

The 2018 Fiesta ST is limited to the European market for now, but it could preview the next iteration of Fiesta in the US, as well. It gets 197 horsepower from a 1.5-liter, turbocharged three-cylinder engine, and torque is up to 213 pound-feet, from 202 in the previous iteration. It’ll even deactivate one of those cylinders under light load to increase fuel economy. Have your cake and eat it, too!

The regular 2018 Fiesta will make an appearance, as well, but that’s not as exciting to write about.

2018-ford-fiesta-st-1.jpg

Honda Civic Type R

It’s here. It’s finally here. After being teased with a thinly veiled “prototype” version last year, Honda will finally debut the production version of the Civic Type R, and it promises to be one of the hottest hatches around.

Power is likely north of the 300 horsepower the last version put out, with all that power going to the front wheels through a limited-slip differential. We’ve heard rumors of everything from multiple drive modes to adaptive suspension, which means this hatch won’t just be hot, it’ll be expensive, as well.

Best of all, it’s coming to the US! This is the first Type R to arrive in the US with a Honda badge, since the last one we received Stateside was the Acura Integra Type R, which was a bit of a beast itself. It’s going to be a good year.

Honda Civic Type R Prototype

I imagine it will look exactly like this, but with actual paint and less tint on the windows.


Honda

Lamborghini Huracan Performante

If you thought the regular Huracan was the most capable V10 car Lamborghini could build, think again.

The Huracan Performante is likely to bow at Geneva, and it will bring some serious performance to the table. It’ll pack the same V10 engine as before, but once you throw some active aerodynamics and weight loss into the picture, its track prowess will only expand.

In fact, we already know it’s pretty damned capable, because it just claimed the production car lap record at the Nürburgring Nordschleife, besting the Porsche 918 Spyder by a whopping five seconds. That’s huge.

Lamborghini Huracan PerformanteEnlarge Image

There’s a Huracan somewhere behind all that crazy camouflage.


Lamborghini

Land Rover Range Rover Velar

Velar is the first new Range Rover model in a decade. It’s a mid-size SUV, built on the same chassis as the Jaguar F-Pace. It’ll slot between the Evoque and the Sport in the Range Rover lineup, and with a starting price of $49,900, it should sell like gangbusters.

It looks the business, and much like other Range Rover models, it’ll handle whatever business comes its way. Not only is it loaded with enough tech to keep a family happy, it can still wade through more than 2 feet of water without a single modification. So, in the event the mall parking lot floods, you won’t have to go without a shopping spree.

Range Rover Velar: Luxury looks, high tech, off road prowess

Smaller than a Range Rover Sport, but bigger than an Evoque, the new Velar offers mid-size luxury and tons of tech for the buyer who wants its all.

by Alex Goy

McLaren Super Series

McLaren is set to debut the first supercar in what will become a revamped Super Series. Currently, that lineup includes the 570S, 570GT, 650S and 675LT.

Here’s what we know so far. It’ll pack a brand new carbon fiber monocoque, which will help drop curb weight to 40 pounds less than the current McLaren 650S — 2,828 pounds, for those of you keeping score at home. You can even spec the car to show off a bit of its naked chassis after it leaves the factory.

It’ll arrive with active aerodynamics that work to produce 50 percent more downforce than the 650S. A new door design aids cooling, boosting efficiency by about 15 percent. It’s unlikely that this will be McLaren’s first hybrid supercar (P1 notwithstanding — that’s a hypercar), but rest assured, those are on the way, too.

mclaren-super-series-teaser.jpgEnlarge Image

Spoiler alert!


McLaren

Mercedes-Maybach G650 Landaulet

What has the rear seats of a Mercedes-Benz S-Class, the off-road capability of a tank and the price tag of a small airplane? Why, the Mercedes-Maybach G650 Landaulet, of course!

The G650 Landaulet is the latest creation from the ultra-posh Mercedes-Maybach sub-brand, and it’ll be sure to please the dictator who loves to flaunt his or her wealth. The rear section of the car features a moving partition, and the fabric top can stow away for some open-air off-roading. Owners couldn’t arrive in a flashier fashion if they rode in on a meteor.

Sadly, this Brobdingnagian behemoth won’t be coming to the US. But, given the quality of our roads and bridges, that’s fine, because this thing looks heavy enough to sink through solid ground.

Mercedes-Maybach G650 Landaulet

Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

Mitsubishi has a new SUV coming to Geneva. No, it’s not as exciting as the McLaren, but for a brand that could desperately use a sales injection in the US, it’ll be a good thing nevertheless.

The proportions look similar to the XR PHEV concept that debuted at last year’s Geneva show, although the front end looks more in tune with the current Outlander. When it arrives in the US, the Eclipse Cross (ugh, that name) will slot between the Outlander and the Outlander Sport.

2018-mitsubishi-eclipse-cross-11.jpgEnlarge Image

At least Mitsubishi isn’t calling it “Outlander Middle.”


Mitsubishi

Pagani Huayra Roadster

It’s a Pagani Huayra without a roof. I hope you weren’t expecting a revolutionary change here.

There are some changes between the $2.4 million Huayra Roadster and its coupe variant, though. Power output is up to 764 horsepower and 737 pound-feet of torque, thanks to a Mercedes-AMG V12 mounted mid-ship. Pagani promises a cornering force of 1.8g, which is just about unheard of with street tires. If rain is coming, you can toss on a fabric top or a more rigid carbon fiber roof panel.

If you’ll excuse me, I’m off to buy a Powerball ticket.

Pagani Huayra Roadster

Porsche 911 GT3 refresh

Porsche is in the midst of upgrading its entire lineup. First off, the 2017 911 boasted turbochargers on the base model. Other variants have since arrived, most recently including a refreshed GTS line. Now, it’s the GT3’s turn for a little touchup.

Auto Express reports that a refreshed GT3 will make its debut in Geneva. It should arrive with a six-speed manual gearbox (as the gods above intended) and a new motor. AE’s report claims that motor will expand to 4.0 liters of displacement, with power levels north of 500 horsepower. Sounds good to us!

Porsche 911 GT3Enlarge Image

Yes please.


Porsche

Subaru Crosstrek

This one isn’t a supercar, either, but it’s responsible for keeping Subaru’s sales nice and super, that’s for sure.

Subaru will debut a new XV at Geneva, and it will arrive in the US under the Crosstrek name. Like before, it is expected to be little more than an Impreza hatchback with a higher ride height and some additional body cladding around the wheel arches. That formula seems to work just fine, since it sells like hotcakes in the US.

No, there probably won’t be a WRX or STI variant available. Yes, we wish there were, too. Hell, we’d be fine with a regular hatchback variant of either, but even that seems like too much to ask of Subaru these days.

Subaru Crosstrek TeaserEnlarge Image

If you expected more than a lifted Impreza, you expected too much, friend.


Subaru

Toyota Yaris hot hatch

Yes, you read that correctly. Toyota will bring a proper hot hatch to Geneva, based on the diminutive Yaris. It may not come to the US, but it’s a start.

This new Yaris is meant to split the difference between the current Yaris, which is rather boring, and Toyota’s new Yaris rally car, which is the opposite of boring. It’s expected to put out more than 210 horsepower, which in a hatch of its size sounds positively delicious.

The US hot-hatch market has been stagnant for some time. Sure, we get the occasional Ford Focus RS or Volkswagen Golf R, but when it comes to cheaper fun, the Ford Fiesta ST and Fiat 500 Abarth could stand to have additional competition.

Toyota Yaris GenevaEnlarge Image

It’s the coolest Yaris I’ve ever seen, but that’s not exactly a high hurdle over which to jump.


Toyota

Vauxhall Insignia

You might be thinking, “What’s a Vauxhall matter to me?” Well, considering what you see here will become the next Buick Regal, I’d venture to say it matters, even if only a little bit.

The new Vauxhall Insignia will make its debut in Geneva, and I’m actually pretty excited for it. Why, you ask? Because it looks the business! It’s sleek, it’s aggressive, and it’s a far cry from Buick designs of yore. Between the new Encore, the new Lacrosse and this, Buick’s got a design revolution on its hands.

Vauxhall Insignia

Volkswagen Arteon

Late last year, rumors cropped up regarding the imminent demise of the Volkswagen CC, a swoopy-coupe sedan that’s basically a Passat but fancier. If it does get replaced, odds are the Arteon will be that replacement.

VW bills the Arteon as a totally new car that sits atop the Passat in the lineup, exactly where the current CC lives. It has the same sort of styling, albeit with a fresher coat of paint. It could expand its wheelbase, though, to better differentiate the brands and to better appeal to China, which has a love for long-wheelbase sedans.

arteon.jpgEnlarge Image

It basically looks like a CC.


Volkswagen

Volvo XC60

Volvo’s reinvention has only just begun.

After the introduction of its -90 lineup, including the V90 wagon, XC90 crossover and S90 sedan, it’s time for the -60 lineup to get some love. The first new vehicle from this lineup will be the 2018 Volvo XC60, which will debut in Geneva before going on sale later this year, most likely.

Like other modern Volvos, it should look stunning, with LED headlights and taillights. The overall silhouette isn’t due to change that much. Undoubtedly, sedan and wagon variants will follow, but for the time being, we’re focused on this lovely little crossover. It’ll pack plenty of tech, including the Sensus Connect infotainment system and the Pilot Assist suite of semi-autonomous driving aids.

Stick around Roadshow to see our complete Geneva coverage starting next week!

2018 Volvo XC60 Teaser

There’s no better name for any design element than “Thor’s Hammer.”


Volvo

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