By Jim Taylor, Editor MACS ACtion Magazine
We’ve written before about racing electric cars and news is constantly emerging. Last week came word of Toyota’s TMG EV P001 beating the existing lap record for an electric vehicle on Germany’s Nurburgring Nordschleife (north track) with a time of 7 minutes and 47.79 seconds. Lap times around The ‘Ring seem to be the new touchstone for performance, and at 12.9 miles and more than 100 turns per lap the course poses a healthy challenge to both car and driver.
On a track where any time under eight minutes is respectable for a race car, the e-Toyota’s lap puts it in company with Porsche’s 911 Turbo and similar cars. The time is still way off the ultimate fast-lap of 6: 48.3 but shattered the previous electric record of 9:51. Toyota says it will begin selling the P001’s electric drive trains next year for use in various racing series.
It’s auto show season again, and the parade of concept cars has stepped off. Most of the concepts never turn into much, but they’re fun to look at. As the Frankfurt Auto show approaches, our screens get overloaded with the weird and the wonderful. Which is which is up to you.
Audi offered this Urban Concept vehicle. It’s goes by two electric motors and both driver and passenger enter through the rear. Call us if you ever see this on the street.
Guitars seem to be big this year in the car world, and we’ll resist the puns about taking your pick or stringing you along. Fender is providing sound systems on some new Volkswagen products, Blackbird recently released a very limited run of carbon fiber Ferrari guitars (sold out within hours) and now Gibson has done a deal with Renault in France.
The company already as a small car called Wind on the street (think Honda CRX for the modern era) and in combination with both the high-performance company Gordini and the U.S guitar company , a matched set of products is available. The “Renault Gordini by Gibson” is smartly turned out in French racing blue and comes with a matching SG 61 Gibson. The car is vaguely reminiscent of the amazing A110 Gordinis that dominated the Monte Carlo Rallye in the 1960s.
And here’s another new vehicle from Toyota. How do twin eight-cylinder engines producing 730 hp sound to you? Diesel, of course, because it’ll be propelling about 9-1/2 tons including up to 12 passengers. The Toyota Ponam-35 will be the first in an expanding line, the company says. First one for sale is due next year; base price (heh!) is said to be under $800,000. Hey, if Honda can build aircraft, why not?
When having your mobile A/C system professionally serviced, insist on proper repair procedures and quality replacement parts. Insist on recovery and recycling so that refrigerant can be reused and not released into the atmosphere.
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The 32nd annual Mobile Air Conditioning Society (MACS) Worldwide Convention and Trade Show will take place January 18-20, 2012 at the Rio All Suite Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, NV.