Ford will use next year’s 24 Hours of Daytona as a test ground for their new 3.5 litre V6 EcoBoost racing engine. Michael Shank Racing has signed up as the first team to put EcoBoost power behind its Daytona Prototype car. The 2014 Riley Technologies Daytona Prototype car features a new look with Ford styling cues created by lead Ford production designer Garen Nicoghosian, with aerodynamic support from Ford Racing chief aerodynamicist Bernie Marcus.
“At Ford Racing, we really put great emphasis on racing production-based vehicles as well as production-based technologies,” says Jamie Allison, director, Ford Racing. “We’re proud to bring a direct-injected, twin-turbo 3.5-liter V6 EcoBoost engine to the United SportsCar Championship in a field of competitive V8-powered entries. We want to show Ford EcoBoost’s capabilities as an engine that provides both performance and fuel economy, on and off the track.”
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The ASAP watercraft is an electric-powered personal watercraft which has been specifically designed to assist lifeguards in getting to swimmers in trouble as soon as possible.
The ASAP water rescue craft is smaller, lighter and cheaper than conventional jetskis, meaning that more lifeguarding stations can afford to operate the vehicle. Of course it’s no substitute for a powerful jetski in large swells or when the swimmer (or swimmers) are far away from shore. However for rescues closer to the beach – but far enough out that paddling on a recue board or simply swimming would waste valuable time – the ASAP would be ideal.
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If you’ve been watching the news lately then you may have seen that Elon Musk, PayPal co-founder, Tesla co-founder, and SpaceX founder has another ambitious venture in the pipeline. Almost literally. His idea is to create a super high-speed link between Los Angeles and San Francisco. The carriages would travel in a airtight tube at over 700 mph, and the 400 mile journey would take roughly 30 minutes.
If it sounds a little crazy, that’s because it is. But Musk has made is name – and quite a substantial lump of cash – out of making the far-fetched and near-impossible a reality. Make no mistake though, his Hyperloop Alpha system is merely in the advanced concept stage. Not a single inch of the track – or tubing – has been laid, and there is currently no date set for doing so. Although 7 to 10 years is the projected build time from start to finish. His plans for the Hyperloop are open source, meaning that anyone can expand on the design and – if they have the money – build it.
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67 year-old Australian entrepreneur Paul Halstead, who made his money from the IT business, has decided to have another crack at building his own car. He tried it in the 1980s by converting Alfa Romeo Sprint Coupes in to mid-engined V8 beasts clothed in Kevlar bodywork. The HAL Giocattolo, as it was called, also had Brembo brakes and trick suspension developed by F1 engineer Barry Lock. Unfortunately he only managed to build 15 examples before having to shut down the operation due to lack of interest and sales. Possibly because the car was so spectacularly ugly.
This time around Halstead has also decided to make a crazy-engined automobile. Except that from the initial sketches, it’s clear he’s also concerned with how it looks. The sketches show a low-slung sleek supercar with uncluttered bodywork and an all-glass canopy. However it’s what’s lurking beneath that’s the real story. Powering the as-yet unnamed HAL supercar is a… Wait for it… 14-litre V16 with an estimated peak power output of 1,200 horsepower!
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Here’s something which looks like it came straight out of Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones. However thankfully it has a far more benign purpose. The Aether airship concept is a proposal for a large luxury airship which is more like an airborne cruise ship than an actual means of getting from A to B.
The Aether airship concept was created by designer Mac Byers as his final year project while studying Transport Design at Huddersfield University in England. The concept, while extremely futuristic in its appearance, is actually based on technology being developed by the US company Aeroscraft.
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In recent years, documentaries about how stuff gets built have become more and more popular. So, the guys at Alfa Romeo have decided to proudly show us some details on how the 4C sports car is being built. And they do have some moments to be proud of, as all of you with a car geek soul will see in the pics and video below.
With a range that is almost entirely of European fame, Alfa Romeo really needs some added excitement up if it’s going to be a success in the US. The hype was started by the beautiful and lavishly exclusive 8C Competizione/Spider. But, as that sports car ended production, so did the buzz surrounding it, and there is no better time for a smaller, more affordable sibling. Especially if it’s going to be produced in larger numbers.
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Peugeot’s all-new ‘Design Lab’ has just been launched to offer external clients design services for just about any product or vehicle you can think of. Those ‘external clients’ better have deep pockets though because the Peugeot Design Lab isn’t just a pokey back-street office where a couple of 2nd-rate designers bang out the odd sketch here and there. The Peugeot Design Lab uses all the technical and human resources available at the Peugeot Design Centre headquarters, and it has offices across three continents, in the cities of Paris, Shanghai and Sao Paolo.
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The Quadrofoil is the perfect example of intelligent engineering. It was created by three Slovenian designers who decided to take an entirely fresh approach to recreational watercraft design. Amazingly, despite the Quadrofoil’s complexity, the team managed to develop a prototype in only six months. The vessel made its debut at Slovenia’s Internautica exhibition last week.
Reaction to the prototype has been so positive that a production run of 100 for this year has already begun. Its ambitious creators hope to be manufacturing more than 10,000 per year from 2013. The fact the Quadrofoil is on offer for EUR 15,000 ($19,100) makes that goal seem plausible, as there’s nothing else quite like it and most brand-new recreational watercraft come with a comparable price tag.
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China, the land where the People’s Liberation Army keeps the population ‘liberated’ by means of invasive monitoring and violent oppression, has just announced the results of their People’s Car Project (PCP) run by Volkswagen. Launched 11 months ago in China, the project has had 33 million visitors to the website, and collected more than 119,000 ideas. Turning some of those ideas into reality, at the Auto China 2012 show in Beijing Volkswagen displayed three vehicle and technology concepts conceived by participants in the project.
“The ‘People’s Car Project’ in China marks the beginning of a new era in automobile design”, Luca de Meo, Director of Marketing, Volkswagen Group and the Volkswagen Passenger Cars brand, commented. “We are no longer just building cars for, but also with customers and at the same time initiating a national dialog which gives us a deep insight into the design preferences, needs and requirements of Chinese customers,” de Meo said. The concepts chosen for development were the Hover Car, the Music Car and the Smart Key.
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Motion Simulation, a UK based company founded in 2008, are now offering the first commercially available 180-degree spherical racing simulator. The TL1 is their first design, and according to the company’s boss, Johnathon Bell, while developing the product the company paid special attention to the details: “There has always been a gap in the quality of experience between simulation software and hardware”, Bell explains, “like screens, cockpits, steering wheels and pedals. The technology and information has been there in the software and whilst steering wheels and pedals have improved greatly the visuals and driving environment let the experience down. We have given high value to every part of the simulator to ensure our customers get the most realistic experience available. Our aim is to take the Simulator as close as possible to the real thing and TL1 is just the start.”
Housing the world’s first 180-degree spherical projector screen and a variable position seat, the Motion Simulation TL1 is said to offer an unrivalled, immersive, simulation experience. Designed and manufactured in cooperation with the Ariel Motor Company, the TL1 is intended to appeal to a broad range of users, including professional race drivers, entertainment companies, and gaming enthusiasts with large bank balances.
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