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Recently Added Posts


Aspark Owl electric supercar records blistering 1.89-seco...

Today, 01:05 PM

Posted by kya100 in Tech News
As EV genius Luke Workman once told us, electric vehicles have virtually limitless performance potential. "Your tire to street interface is your performance limiter," he said, and that's the first thing that came to mind when we saw the Aspark Owl blast onto the scene.
The Owl is a spartan electric sports car from Japan, and using an enhanced tire-to-street interface, it's just recorded a 1.89-second 0-100 km/h (0-62 mph) sprint. 
That's a hundredth or two quicker than the purported 1.9-second 0-60 mph time on the upcoming Tesla Roadster, but to be fair, the Aspark team used hot race tires to get there.
The Owl itself looks like barely more than a drivetrain, a hastily assembled frame and a carbon fiber shell at the moment. And the test track where the feat was recorded wasn't even a test track at all. The Aspark team appears to have done it in the parking lot of an industrial estate, in pretty cramped quarters.
In a Facebook video released yesterday, the driver hits the gas, chirps off the line, hits triple digit kilometers in around 27 meters (88 ft) and then slams on the brakes to stop himself running into a vertical cliff face not much further in front of him. 
Still, as if we needed any more proof of how fast electric sports cars will be, a 1.89 second sprint will represent the quickest production car on the road if Aspark isn't gazumped by the time the Owl goes to production in around 2 years. And as these guys point out, acceleration is all that really counts on the road, where you'll humiliate any Lambo or Koenigsegg up to the speed limit and just have to sit there like everyone else.
The company is hoping to build 50 units, with gullwing doors, a fully digital dash, a steering wheel that has more buttons than a 90s stereo, a total weight of 850 kg (1,874 lb), a maximum power output of 320 kW (429 hp) and 764 Nm (563 lb-ft) of torque.
It'll be a 300-volt, 2,000 amp 4WD system powered by a combination of supercapacitors and batteries with an as yet unknown capacity or range. The price tag will be somewhere over US$4 million each.
Would we buy one? Heavens no. The Tesla Roadster is gonna start at $200 grand, and it'll have four seats, a huge range and will function as a very good actual automobile while only giving up a hundredth of a second or so in the sprint. In our experience, any sub-three second 0-100 time is more than enough to truly horrify most passengers. Sub-two seconds... Put it this way, make sure your mum's been drinking lots of milk before you try to show her what your Owl can do. She'll need the bone strength.
And anyway, at the rate these sprint times are coming down in the electric age, you might as well wait two years and buy something that'll get you up to freeway speed before you're finished blinking, with an on-call medical team ready to scrape your G-force-liquefied physical form out of the driver's seat so the next person can enjoy it. Why do things by halves?
Source: Aspark

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Ferrari announces the 488 Pista: A muscled-up, racetrack-...

Today, 01:05 PM

Posted by kya100 in Tech News
Ferrari is preparing to rock the racetrack with its most powerful V8 supercar ever. The 488 Pista, which translates as "Track," is the latest in Ferrari's special series, and makes 710 horsepower while weighing 198 lb less than the 488 GTB and gaining some extra special handling prowess.
Following in the hallowed footsteps of the 360 Challenge Stradale, 430 Scuderia and 458 Speciale, the Pista is an uncompromising performance focused update to the 488 with track tenths the key goal.
Weight is down to 1280 kg (2822 lb) and power is up by almost 50 horsepower thanks to a range of solutions brought across from the 488 Challenge race car. Exhaust manifolds for the 3.9-liter V8 are now made from Inconel. Con rods are titanium, the intake plenums are carbon fiber, and the crankshaft and flywheel have both gone on a diet.
Response from the twin turbos is quicker, and torque is higher right through the rev range for quicker, more responsive acceleration at any engine speed. To reassure you of this fact, the engine is louder everywhere too.
Zero-100 km/h (0-62 mph) is dispatched in a sprightly 2.85 seconds, or you can hit double that speed in 7.6 seconds from a standstill. Top speed is in excess of an already thoroughly excessive 340 km/h (211 mph) – you'd be lucky to find a racetrack you could top it out on.
Aerodynamics have received a lot of attention, the sharp new bodywork being an eye-catching departure from the more flowing lines of the GTB. The Pista makes 20 percent more downforce, but without resorting to a huge rear wing. Instead, the car is sucked harder to the ground thanks to much more aggressive front diffusers, an enlarged rear spoiler and a huge S-duct in the hood that Ferrari says forms a "flying wing" at the front. It'll certainly cause the uneducated to scratch their heads wondering where all the engine is at.
Handling and Electronics
Likewise there's been plenty of time and money spent on handling dynamics, particularly at the limits of traction. The 488 Pista gets version 6 of Ferrari's Side-Slip Angle Control system, which includes the E-Diff3 electronic differential, F1-Trac traction control, and active magnetorheological suspension. The Pista also gets the Ferrari Dynamic Enhancer thrown into this package, which gives the car's computers full control of brake pressure at each individual caliper during cornering to help you keep the perfect drift angle through corners, power out harder, and generally feel like even more of a superhero.
The interior cabin has been "pared back" to feel as racy and ascetic as Ferrari was willing to go. You can option it back up toward the luxury end if you like.
The unwashed masses will lay their grubby peepers on the 488 Pista for the first time at the upcoming Geneva Motor Show. 
Source: Ferrari

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Curtiss Warhawk: Limited edition, 150-hp, V-twin industri...

Today, 01:05 PM

Posted by kya100 in Tech News
American arthouse motorcycle manufacturer Confederate became Curtiss earlier this year. The rebrand pays tribute to Glenn Curtiss, aviation pioneer, twice world motorcycle speed record holder, once outright world land speed record holder (on the only motorcycle to ever hold the land speed record) and, of critical importance to this story, the man who created a tradition by building the first American V-twin.
For 27 years, Confederate built exquisite, boutique, beautiful V-twins, but upon deciding to rename itself after the man who invented the fire-breathing American V-twin, it declared it would be building electric motorcycles ... and not V-twins. 
Now let's consider the wisdom of that decision for a moment. When we counted up the numbers in our top 250 most expensive motorcycles ever sold at auction, more than 75 percent were V-twins. People love V-twins, and of particular relevance to boutique motorcycle manufacturers, really wealthy people who buy the world's most expensive motorcycles love V-twins.
At some point in the last few months, the brains trust at Confederate ... err, Curtiss ... decided that they really liked building V-twins too. Hence we're glad they decided to build a limited edition Warhawk.
The Warhawk will be the first Curtiss motorcycle in 110 years, and it will be a V-twin. In reality, it's a Confederate P51 Fighter by another name, but if you happen to have been following what Confederate has done for the last 27 years, you'll be backing it to continue onwards with relevance and style and attitude – V-twin or electric or whatever. 
The problem is this. There will only be 35, and Curtiss says this will be the last V-twin it ever creates. That is, the company named after the guy who invented the American V-twin is building a final batch of 132 cubic inch, 150 hp industrial art hotrods with V-twin motors.
If you have any doubt about the legitimacy of the Confederate V-twin DNA, read this evaluation by Alan Cathcart. Alan has been the foremost journalistic authority in the world on motorcycles for four decades. He won two world racing championships after his fortieth birthday but has kissed the Blarney Stone ... with his fingers. I trust his judgement.
The first Curtiss electric motorcycle isn't due for release until the Quail Motorcycle Gathering in California on May 5, 2018, so for those with an eye for an investment who can't wait that long, and hanker for a piece of serious V-twin industrial art with the Curtiss name emblazoned upon it, there's one last chance.
Source: Curtiss Motorcycles

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