PARIS--These may be trying times for the European economy, but that automakers rallied at the 2012 Paris Motor Show, bringing out a variety of new concepts and some model updates relevant to the U.S. buyer. As has become a theme given European interest in CO2 reduction, many of the cars we saw featured hybrid or electric drive trains. And many new models and updates were what we in the U.S. consider premium cars boasting fine coachwork.
If you want to know where the most famous hoodie-wearer in the world will be Friday morning, he'll be ringing a bell in Hacker Square.
Hacker Square is more or less the center of Facebook's Menlo Park, Calif., headquarters, and features a giant "HACK" in the cement that's large enough to be seen from space. The man with the hoodie is, of course, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. At 6:30 a.m. PT tomorrow, a source told CNET, Zuck will stand by a big crane in the square and ring a ceremonial bell in time … Read more
Ever since hybrids became popular, with the second generation of the Toyota Prius, the question arose of whether the fuel savings justified a hybrid car's higher price. The extra expense for a hybrid car has been called the hybrid premium.
The extra cost for a hybrid car comes from the additional equipment in the driveline. Along with the gas engine, hybrid cars have an electric propulsion motor, a high-voltage battery pack, and a power control module, this latter component determining how to feed electric power into the drive system.
Now, with many automakers offering some type of hybrid car, … Read more
When they asked me to compare these two cars, I almost choked on my morning Castrol: the Porsche 911 is just about unassailable as a driver's car, while Jaguar has insulted us for ages with X-Types, S-Types, and a bunch of XJs whose resale value drops faster than the Dow in '08.
But as I went over my notes from driving each recently, I found an interesting story and a couple of cars you might actually cross-shop. Maybe.
Let's get them head-to-head and see if the 911's latest edition can unnerve Britain's best example of an … Read more
The inherent frugality of a hybrid car might make you think of a no-frills driving experience. But luxury automakers have learned the win-win nature of an electric-assisted power train.
Infiniti, Porsche, and BMW devised their own takes on the hybrid car, fitting these fuel-efficient systems into full-size sedans and SUVs. Lincoln borrowed a hybrid system from sister brand Ford for its own midsize sedan, the MKZ. And Lexus even transferred the Prius hybrid power train into a luxury hatchback.… Read more
Those familiar with past 911s will notice something missing in the cabin of the 2012 911 Carrera S -- the emergency brake lever no longer sticks up from the console. Instead, a switch by your left knee activates an electronic parking brake.
The console now plays host to an array of buttons activating sport modes, active exhaust, and damper stiffening. In my opinion, these buttons are more accessible, and look much better, than the tiny plastic buttons that used to sit below the navigation screen.
Of greater loss to the traditionalists is hydraulic power steering, replaced by an electrically boosted … Read more
Not all the toxics in your car from from the tailpipe. There's a new ranking out this week that finds the worst polluters inside the car and offers some hint of how you can shop to avoid sitting in a toxic chamber when you buy a new car.Subscribe with iTunes (audio) Subscribe with iTunes (video) Subscribe with RSS (audio) Subscribe with RSS (video) EPISODE 252 SHOW NOTES
The Porsche design department apparently spends most of its time thinking up names for new models, rather than coming up with a new look for the 911, as evidenced by its announcement today that a new, small SUV, going into production next year, will be called the Macan. Previously, Porsche was toying with the name Cajun for this car.
A good portion of the world will have a similar reaction as it had when Volkswagen came out with the Touareg, as in "wha?". But Indonesians may jump up when they hear the name, saying "Macan?! Where?", … Read more
During your dating life, you will meet many a prospective life partner, and their cars will serve as a good indication of their personalities, likes, and dislikes.
You can tell a lot about a person by the car they drive, and some cars say more than others. In some cases, the message conveyed by these cars will let you know you have found a home. In others, that you should start looking for the closest exit. Look fondly on these cars, even if they represent the one that got away, or the one that was a total psycho, because after the wedding and the kids some, you will be driving a minivan.… Read more
In November, the new look for the upcoming BlackBerry London designed by Porsche was leaked to the Web. Photos of the metallic, angular smartphone surfaced along with information about the London being the first phone to run the QNX operating system.
Today, however, new photos of quite a different looking phone were leaked, according to CrackBerry. Looking strikingly similar to an iPhone, this new BlackBerry London is sleek and black with rounded edges.
"London is about changing the game," reads the BlackBerry marketing info. "Hardware & Platform, fused into one polished experience."
The London is the … Read more