Auto Notes - March 2017
Toyota racing. Team Ryan Millen and the Toyota Rally RAV4 will be involved in even more racing this year than their successful 2016 season. Along with new navigator and co-driver Rhianon Gelsomino, the team will compete in the newly formed American Rally Association (ARA) series, as well as select Rally America and NASA Rally Sport races.
In 2016, the team competed in 12 races and captured multiple class wins, a rookie of the year title, second place in the Rally America 2WD Championship, and won the NASA Rally Sport National Championship for the second year in a row.
Fuel cell hoopla. nanoFlowcell Holdings will present state-of-the-art fuel cell research at the 87th Geneva International Motor Show March 7-19. For the first time, the QUANT 48VOLT features the new nanoFlowcell 48-volt low-voltage drive with the world’s first variably controllable mobile flow cell that provides a constant source of electrical energy, plus all-new electric motors providing race car propulsion.
The prototype QUANT 48VOLT is an all-wheel-drive midsize sports car with winged doors that produces 760 HP and can achieve 0-62 MPH (0-100 km/h) in just 2.4 seconds.
Under the QUANT brand, nanoFlowcell Holdings develops prototype vehicles with low-voltage electric drives for the purpose of testing nanoFlowcell technology.
World Car Awards. Now in its 13th year, the World Car Awards, recognized as the No. 1 global awards program by Prime Research, will award winners at the New York Auto Show on April 13. The non-profit awards program, which started juror testing in Paris late September, then moved to Los Angeles for five days of test drives in November, will have the top three finalists in five categories announced March 7, in Geneva.
Categories include 2017 World Luxury Car, World Performance Car, World Green Car, World Urban Car, and World Car Design. A jury of 75 distinguished automotive journalists selected five finalists in the five categories by secret ballot based on evaluations of each car during their professional work. Based on their voting, the award for the World Car of the Year is determined.
The top 10 World Car of the Year contenders are as follows: Audi A5/S5 Coupe, Audi Q2, Audi Q5, Fiat/Abarth 124 Spyder, Honda Civic, Jaguar F-Pace, Mazda CX-9, Skoda Kodiaq, Toyota C-HR, and the Volkswagen Tiguan.
The Audi A5/S5, Jaguar, Mazda, and Toyota are four of the five (along with Mercedes S-Class Cabriolet) in the World Car Design of the Year Award. A design panel of six highly respected global designers first review vehicle candidates that represent inspiring cars with both excellence and innovation to create a short list for jurors.
Ford Award. The 2017 Ford F-150 Raptor has been named the 2017 FOUR WHEELER Pickup Truck of the Year. “The all-new F-150 Raptor is the truck equivalent of an amusement park ride,” said Ken Brubaker, FOUR WHEELER editor. “Compared to its predecessor, this Raptor has more ground clearance and a significantly wider track that makes it look incredibly aggressive.”
The 2017 Raptor is a purpose-built offroad truck with a competition-proven chassis, 44 percent larger FOX shocks, and nine-stage bypass damping. It also has second-generation BF Goodrich KO2 tires designed for the pickup’s offroad capabilities.
Just prior to FOUR WHEELER’S award, the Raptor was named the Best pickup Truck of 2017 by Cars.com
Chev tech grows. Chevrolet owners in the U.S. used a staggering 4,220,684 gigabytes of data in 2016, an increase of nearly 200 percent over 2015. The most significant increase was with Tahoe and Suburban owners who used three-and-a-half times more data than a year ago.
“As a strategic plan to grow retail sales, Chevrolet has continually invested in new safety, convenience, and connected technologies across our truck, SUVs, and cars,” said Alan Batey, president of GM North America and global head of Chevrolet. “We are attracting new buyers to Chevrolet by offering technologies like OnStar 4G LTE not available on competitive models.”
Tahoe and Suburban owners used 713,669 gigabytes of data in 2016, which equates to three million hours of streaming standard video; 25 million hours streaming music; 1.8 billion songs, game or app downloads; and 1.5 billion photos downloaded to social media.