In order to garner some extra publicity for the upcoming massive multiplayer role playing game Star Citizen, its creators have developed a humerous little spoof video showing a Top Gear-esque review of the Origin M50 spaceship.
In the review a digital Jeremy Clarkson hommage introduces the M50, before taking it for a spin and pitting it against a previous model. It’s superbly done, and has certainly done the job of attracting more attention to the crowd-funded game. Not that it needed the additional exposure, having successfully attacted over $51 million in funding as of last month!
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The first official picture of the new Batmobile which shows the car in all its glory has just been released. The car will undoubtedly be one of the stars of the upcoming flick Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, which is currently being filmed in Detroit. However if Batman ever tries to get the thing approved for road use he may have to have a word with the always helpful folks at the US Department of Transport.
Of primary concern to the DOT officials will probably be the dual machine guns up front which appear to be mounted on a revolving turret equipped with video targeting. However the lack of any pedestrian safety features may lead to issues if Batman were ever inclined to put the machine into mass production, as would the woefully inadequate headlights, lack of windscreen wipers and poor side (and non-existent) rear visibility. There also may or may not be rocket launchers mounted sticking out of the hood.
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The Kormaran is a speedboat concept with more than one trick up its sleeve. Not content with making something that looks like it belongs on the set of the latest Transformers movie, the creators of the Kormaran have also designed a vessel which can morph itself into a number of different configurations at the touch of a button.
Designed in Germany the Kormaran has been in development since 2007. The second more advanced prototype is scheduled to be built soon based on a proof of concept prototype constructed in 2012. The company have partnered with a number of specialist companies to build the vessel.
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The Blackburn Beverley was a heavy transport aircraft operated by squadrons of the Royal Air Force Transport Command from 1957 to 1967. It was a spectacularly ugly aircraft, often described as “a block of flats with wings”. But despite its awkward proportions, it did its job very well. It was rugged, practical, and could operate from short runways of questionable quality.
The origins of the Beverley came from the manufacturer General Aircraft. They designed and built the original two prototypes, the GAL.60 Universal Freighter and the updated GAL.65. However after General Aircraft merged with Blackburn Aircraft in the early 1950s the name of the aircraft changed to the B-101 Beverley. At the same time the Bristol Hercules engines were replaced with more powerful Bristol Centaurus engines equipped with reverse-pitch propellers. These propellers gave the Beverley a very unique advantage over almost every other aircraft. When on the ground it could reverse under its own power, making it ideal for operating in confined areas and makeshift runways. The reverse-pitch propellers could also be used to slow down the aircraft once it had touched down, meaning it could land on comparatively short runways. At full load the takeoff run required 2,370 ft (722 metres) while the landing run needed was 930 ft (283 metres).
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At a private event hosted by Make: magazine in San Francisco, Toyota unveiled a ridiculously ugly concept vehicle which is actually quite desirable in many ways. The Toyota Urban Utility Concept, or U2 for short, is a vehicle designed for DIY enthusiasts, creators, entrepreneurial types, designers and artists. Basically anyone who might have need for a small, versatile van.
The Toyota U2 concept was designed at the company’s Calty Design Research facility in Newport Beach, California. Before putting pen to paper the designers gathered feedback from Maker Faire participants, who are exactly the sort of people the concept is designed to appeal to.
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At the upcoming Paris Motor Show, which opens its doors early next month, Honda will unveil a prototype version of their all-new compact SUV destined for the European market. The Honda HR-V is more about substance than style. Which is a good thing considering it’s lacking any real design flair. Despite its compact size Honda have engineered the HR-V to be as practical, versatile and spacious as possible.
The vehicle features a centrally mounted fuel tank which Honda says frees up space inside. The “Honda Magic Seats”, yes that’s a thing now, can be configured in a variety of ways to carry either people or cargo.
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One of the most anticipated supercar reveals of the year has just taken place at a private event hosted by Mercedes-Benz. The all-new Mercedes-AMG GT might have to wait until the Paris Motor Show for its official public debut, but all the details of the car are now out in the open.
The Mercedes-AMG GT and the hotter GT S model are both based around a lightweight aluminium chassis into which a 4.0 litre V8 has been shoehorned. It’s a great looking car, well balanced with a classic long hood and a cab-rearward layout. Many will see a good deal of Porsche 911 in the rump of the car, but as there are so many makes and models out there now it’s getting increasingly difficult to create a car which doesn’t look in some way or another like a different vehicle from certain angles. Overall the new GT ranks up there with some of the finest looking automobiles Mercedes-Benz has ever created.
Mercedes say the new GT and GT S have both been developed to be capable on the track and civilized enough for every day use. Both cars feature numerous motorsport inspired elements and benefit from things like double wishbone front and rear suspension systems, a 47/53 front/rear weight distribution, active and passive safety features as well as a well equipped and luxurious cabin. The GT S, aside from receiving a more powerful version of the 4.0 litre V8 turbocharged engine, also receives larger brakes as standard, electronically controlled suspension damping, an electronic rear-axle locking differential, a sound-variable sports exhaust, larger wheels and tires and an optional AMG dynamic Plus package which features dynamic engine and transmission mounts, tighter suspension a recalibrated speed-sensitive steering system.
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The BMW 2 Series Convertible is the soft-top alter-ego of the BMW 2 Series Coupe which was revealed earlier in 2014. It’ll be available in a range of tune, although the models available will depend on your location. The US will get the 228i and M235i models, with optional xDrive all-wheel drive available on the 228i. European buyers will most likely get a couple more options, including both diesel and smaller displacement 4-cylinder gasoline engines.
The folding fabric roof of the 2 Series Convertible is just about the only thing that separates the car from the coupe version of the car. It raises and lowers in 20 seconds at the touch of a button at speeds of up to 30 mph. BMW’s engineers have worked hard to make sure the noise levels inside the car are as low as possible. In fact the cockpit of the car is up to 7 decibels quieter than that of the previous 1 Series Convertible. The top can be ordered in one of three different colors; black, anthracite with silver effect, and brown with silver effect.
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Jaguar has made no secret of the XE. In fact they’ve been shouting about if for many months now. But at a Jaguar-hosted, star-studded event in London the car was finally unveiled.
At first glance it looks like Jaguar made a mistake and accidentally pulled the covers off an updated XF. But if you take out a tape measure and a magnifying glass then it becomes clearer this is in fact a new model. The Jaguar XE is a sports orientated saloon designed to do battle with the likes of the BMW 3-Series and Audi A4. It’s a rear-driver, which is a huge plus point, and from launch a high performance XE S model will be available powered by a supercharged 3.0 litre V6 developing 340 horsepower.
Like the slightly larger XF, the new XE is a handsome car. Not exciting, dramatic or eye-catching, just quietly confident in its own solid proportions. The XE S gets a slightly more sporty appearance, including larger front intakes, chrome side vents, a small rear spoiler and optional 20-inch wheels.
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If you like the idea of owning a helicopter, but are afraid of heights and happen to live near a lake or the sea, then this really should be on your shopping list. The Helicat 22 is a catamaran which has been styled to look like a helicopter. Don’t ask why, there doesn’t seem to be any particular reason. The Helicat 22 has been desiged with speed and stability in mind. It’s particularly good on rough waters with the widely spaced twin hulls providing a stable platform with minimal drag when zooming along at speed.
Aside from its unique appearance, the Helicat 22 also offers a good degree of practicality. Obvioulsy the cabin is fairly compact, limiting the number of people who can be carried at any one time, but it can cope with waves which would have boats of comparable size scooting for the nearest safe harbor. It has an impressive top speed of 43 mph when fitted with the optional 90 horsepower motors. It also has a range of over 100 miles with the standard twin 45 litre (12 gallon) fuel tanks.
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