Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Škoda Citigo

Škoda (the biggest car company in Czech Republic, part of VW family) have recently revealed all the details about their new city car - Škoda Citigo. It's closely related to VW Up! but it looks completely different. Citigo is a car for everyday use in the city, it's perfect as 2nd or 3rd car for the family. There's a 3-door and a 5-door variant (5-door coming later this year). It has the latest technology, even a braking assist to avoid low-speed crashes in the city, few airbags, iPod conectivity and a lot of places to put your handbag... Yeah, it is kinda girlish, but which small car isn't?

Škoda Citigo

It comes with a 1-liter 3-pot engine producing 44/55kW depending on how much you want to spend. Fuel consumption isn't that impresive though - 4.5l/100km. And it's not exactly a looker as well... I seriously advise you to buy a second hand Volkswagen Polo BlueMotion, you'll get so much more car for your money. 

Škoda Citigo - interior

Anyway, do you guys like it?

Saturday, September 24, 2011

IAA bits and pieces

I've got some more cars that have caught my eye in Frankfurt this year. Let's cut to the case, the first one is a Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport L'Or Blanc. This rather complicated name is just another one-off Veyron, because Bugatti really like to show off. They've gone for a material you would find in your cupboard - porcelain! Don't worry, the car isn't actually made of porcelain, however some interior bits are. The company responsible for it is called Porzellan-Manufaktur (based in Berlin, Germany). It gets a special paintjob and some chrome wheels... What's not to like?

Buggati Veyron Grand Sport L'Or Blanc

The next one is something I haven't seen around for a while - four-door convertible concept by Cadillac. It's called Ciel and it looks absolutely brilliant. I love what Caddy have done here. Knock, knock... Who's there? The future...

Cadillac Ciel

And last but not least - Lamborghini Gallardo LP 570-4 Super Trofeo Stradale. They really have to do something about naming their cars, this just isn't right. But underneath the long title lies the best Gallardo ever made. It's a tribute based on a combination of Superlaggera (the lightweight one) and Super Trofeo (Lamborghini's own racing series). This is probably the last special edition of Gallardo ever made, but you know the Italians, you can expect some more in the future. I won't bore you with the figures, because this car is about so much more than just some numbers. It sums up all 8 years of production, it's a masterpiece and on of the best looking Lambo's of all time. I would literally sell half my body parts to own this car... :)

Lamborghini Gallardo LP 570-4 Super Trofeo Stradale

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Arrinera - Polish supercar

I've got something special for you today - Poland's first take in supercar industry. Arrinera is a Polish car maker funded by Fenix Automotive (founded by Lee Noble, former owner of Noble)... have I lost you? I'm sorry, but that's just how it is in a nutshell. Let's talk about the car, it's a RWD mid-engined two-seater made from carbon-kevlar composite. The chassis is made from steel, but it's very rigid and light as Lee Noble is a man that really knows how to make a proper car. So you can expect really good handling, the performance is also good - powered by Corvette's LS9 and supercharged for some extra oomph, now producing 650 hp. 0-100 km/h takes just 3.2 seconds and it maxes out at 340 km/h, which is quite respectable. Ok, so the figures sound good, but what about the looks? Well, if you enjoyed your meal and don't want to see it again in the bathroom, you should stop reading now.

Are you really brave enough to see it? Fine, here it goes... But remember I warned you!

Arrinera supercar

I'm sorry, but this is just Lambo design, they even stole the door mechanism. And you think this is the only thing they've borrowed? Oh hell no, headlamps look like the ones on Noble, engine cover is based on Porsche Carrera GT and orange leather interior? I'm sorry, but that was only cool in Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder in grey metallic paint, it's just disgusting in this car. Let's get to the rear end:

...and from the back

Just how many times has the designer seen Transformers? You think the taillights are cool? Nope, this was taken from Nissan Pulsar, the vents look like Lamborghini Reventon's and the tailpipe? It's inappropriate - you've got a V8 under the bonnet, let it breathe! And there's a bonus - from the side it looks like a DeLorean DMC-12. That's just it, I think they've crossed a big line here. I'm off to empty my stomach...

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

GT-R madness!

I was just browsing Nissan 200sx car owners forum (if you still don't know I own one myself) and came across some really interesting ad - a chance to drive my dream car Nissan GT-R for an amazing price of 40€. My mind was completely blown, I ordered one ride in a blink of an eye. I just hope this works out, it has to! I am so psyched right now I can't even write :D

   Let's calm down and let me give you some figures on GT-R. Nissan have built this car specifically to beat the almighty Porsche 911 Turbo round the Nürburgring and they have succeeded. It's got a twin-turbocharged V6 (VR38DETT for you Nissan fans) producing 478 hp and 588 torques. Don't expect some oldschool driving, this is a computer on four wheels but in a good way. Four wheel drive, launch control, control unit that checks just the right amount of torque goes to each wheel 100 times per second, flappy paddle gearbox and much more. But the thing I love the most about GT-R is it's looks, you really don't expect this car to do 0-100 km/h in 3.5 second and thus completely humiliating you on the lights! I will definitely write a post about GT-R's history some time in the future, once I taste the sweetness of the cherry on Nissan's cake of motoring excellence.

Nissan GT-R

Sunday, September 18, 2011

You vs. Universe

Don't worry, I haven't gone mad, this isn't about philosophy. You and Universe are Volvo's latest concepts and I'm keen to introduce them. Let's start with the older one - Volvo Universe, introduced earlier this year in Shanghai. It brings out completely new design using some classic lines from Volvo archives. I love it, the front grill looks very funky as well as the headlamps... This isn't a description you would expect for a Volvo design. And the bonnet is just somehow awesome. I'm not so sure about the rear lights though, they are a bit 'Jaguarish'.

Volvo Universe

Volvo You, unveiled at IAA Frankfurt, looks very simmilar, but it's a completely different car. It's design is affected by Geely's purchase of Volvo. It's a bit less funky, but still very good looking. I absolutely love the name - can you imagine the conversation? 'What's your ride? .. You. .. Me?!'

Volvo You
And if you still find the Volvo design a bit conservative, just look at the interior... Volvo, safe and slick :-)
 Volvo You - interior
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Thursday, September 15, 2011

My mum's FIAT

I'd like to devote today's post to my mum's Fiat Stilo 1.2 (2002). We've had this car for five years, it never let us down and worked hard. Until last week - one of the ignition coils broke down, I checked all the spark plugs and I did not know how this car was still working... I've seen a lot of spark plugs, but these were just the worst. Anyway, we ordered some new plugs and an ignition coil. I swapped them earlier, is what I would said if the idiot at the store gave me the right plugs... Damn, at least the coil works, so the engine runs on all four pots again! Hurray! I'm gonna beat the hell out of him tommorow, get the right plugs and change them.

  I absolutely love the car, it's just an honest piece of Italian engineering. We've imported it from Germany (it had done 70.000 km, currently 98.000 km) for about 8.000€, it has A/C, 6 airbags, 6-speed manual gearbox and electric windows, that's basically it. And it's a 3-door version, because it looks the best. We use it as our family work horse, it has a tow bar for our trailer and a lot of scratches over the years. The biggest scratch comes from an avalanche, my mum parked the car under a high roof covered in snow and as it begun to melt, the whole lot fell on our poor car. It broke the windshield and we lost the rear window wiper as well. I've had a lot of fun in this car, especially in the winter drifting like mad on local carpark (using handbrake as it is front wheel drive).

In case you don't know what the Fiat looks like, here are some photos:

Fiat Stilo

And here's one of the engine that was taken today. Notice the redneck air filter - yep, it's a stocking! I need the car today, so I made this temporary solution, because I'm a lazy person and I don't want to take off all the plastic covers and the original air-box tommorow as well.

The engine... :D

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Fisker Automotive

Today I found out there is an electric car you might actually consider buying! My world was totally crushed, I was always a bit skeptical about the whole 'electric-powered vehicle for everyday use' thing. Why? It's very simple - you wake up in the morning, have a coffee and comute to work. Let's say it's about 100 kilometers away, you jump into your electric car, because you want to save the environment... And the battery dies somewhere in the middle of your journey. You pull out the cord and recharge your car, 10 hours later it's fully charged and you can finally get to work... Or turn around and go home tell your wife you've been fired. Your choice.

   So what is this miraculous car? Let me introduce you the manufacturer first - Fisker Automotive. Founded in 2007 in California by Henrik Fisker (designer responsible for iconic cars such as Aston Martin DB9 and BMW Z8), the company decided to produce luxurious hybrid cars (aiming at Porsche and BMW customers). First one was Fisker Karma, powered by a combination of an electric engine and 2-litre turbocharged four-pot. The combined range is 480 km (80 km on batteries, 400 km), it produces 400 bhp and nearly a thousand torques. For the same money as Porsche Panamera... Brilliant!

Fisker Karma

They have unveiled a new model in Frankfurt - the Fisker Surf. It's a shooting brake (like the new Ferrari FF) and if you found Karma's design stunning, just wait until you see this one! Power output is slightly better, it produces less CO2 than Toyota Prius and the range is unchanged. Here it goes:

Fisker Surf

I am speechless! I just hope all future electric cars look this good...

Monday, September 12, 2011

IAA Frankfurt 2011

It's that time of the year again - one of the biggest car shows takes place in Frankfurt am Mein (Germany). The 64th IAA (International Automobil-Ausstellung) starts tommorow September 13 and ends 12 days later - September 25. There are 90 new cars/concepts, let me introduce the most important ones.

   Aston Martin will show their street racer - V12 Zagato, an amazing piece of Italian design (tribute to the original Zagato from 60's) powered by the 380 kW V12 engine from Vantage. I want one so bad!

Aston Martin V12 Zagato

Ferrari have cut the roof off their 458 Italia - resulting in a hardtop convertible supercar called Spider. They really did their best, it's only 50 kilos heavier than the standart 458 and it takes 14 seconds to put the roof up. But they still haven't convinced me their design is better than Lamborghini's...

Ferrari 458 Spider: Italia

Mercedes-Benz did the same thing as Ferrari, took their SLS AMG and made it a Roadster. It has the same performance as the original SLS, it's 40 kilos heavier and the softtop folds in 11 seconds. Well done, Merc! And they ditched the silly "gullwing" door, well done indeed!

Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Roadster and Coupé
And finally the new Porsche 911, 991 generation. I personally am not a big fan of current Porsche design, but I have to admit they did a pretty good job this time. Let's see who wins the epic battle Turbo vs. Nissan GT-R this year!

Porsche 911 (991)

I recommend you to visit the IAA, it's one hell of a show! Or if you are less lucky just stay tuned, I'll review some more cars later.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Agera R - the best of Sweden

If you ever wondered which hypercar is the most hyper, Koenigsegg's got an answer - Agera R. Let me show you some figures to prove my point. This beast has, and there is no other way of saying it, 1115 horsepower (using bioethanol E85) and over 1200 torques! All of them powering the 345/30 R20 rear tires, 345!!! Those tires are so wide you could park another car on them. But wait, Bugatti have made an 8-liter W16 engine to produce those figures, how could Koenigsegg make such an engine? Well, they started from scratch, this one is powered by Koenigsegg's own alluminium twin-turbocharged 5-liter V8. And here's some more - Agera R just set some new records:
  • 0-300 km/h = 14.53 s
  • 0-200 mph = 17.68 s
  • 300-0 km/h = 6.66 s
  • 200-0 mph = 7.28 s
  • 0-300-0 km/h = 21.19 s
  • 0-200-0 mph = 24.96 s

Would you just look at this sweet design.

I'm telling you - if this car was any faster, it would travel in time! You get basically the same performance as Bugatti Veyron SS (0-100 km/h is 0.4 second slower - 2.9s), stunning looks, more fun and it costs half the price of an SS. So this is the car to buy if you've got 1 million euros. Or is it?

   If you are the type of a person that loves the smell of a proper V8 in the morning, eats tires and drinks petrol, you should consider buying something a bit crazier, something even faster, something American. Hennessey have gone completely mad - they've used Lotus Exige's bodywork, pumped it up a little bit, ditched the 1.8-liter engine and put some Corvette engine back in. And turbocharged it, a lot! Thus the Venom GT was born. The V8 now produces up to 1200 horsepower!!! In a car that weighs just a bit over 1000 kilos. Top speed of this car is 440 km/h, oh my god! They are only making ten GTs, so you better hurry up and prepare one million dollars as well.

Venom GT - the craziest car around

Anyway, I'd like to apologize for not updating my blog during this week, I had an all-week-long houseparty. So I'm resuming to my usual 2 posts per 3 days :-)

Monday, September 5, 2011

Nürburgring record

Earlier this year Peugeot set a new electric car record around the Nürburgring. 9m 1.338s was almost a minute faster than previous record holder, Peugeot used their high-performance EX1 Concept electric car, a 340bhp all wheel drive beast. But the 'Ring demands some serious competition and to hold a lap record there is very prestigious.

Peugeot EX1 Concept

It didn't take long to beat that record again - by Toyota. About a week ago they let their own high-performance electric car TMG EV P001 (this really sounds like a kitchen appliance) lap the 'Ring and it did it in 7m 47.794s! This Radical-based 375bhp racer wiped the previous record so hard Peugeot's executives shed a tear...

Toyota TMG EV P001

To put this time in perspective, let me show you some other cars that lapped the 'Ring in 7m 47s - Porsche 911 GT3 RS, Lamborghini Murcielago LP-640 and Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorano. And here are some other amazing lap times:
  • production vehicles - Radical SR8 LM - 6m 48s
  • non-series vehicles - Pagani Zonda R - 6m 47.5s (fastest road-legal car)
And the absolute record holder Porsche 956 at 6m 11.13s driven by Stefan Bellof in 1983. I will definitely come back to this legendary car later, it deserves it!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Tuning failure

Today I visited a local tuning show to test my car in an 1/8 mile drag race. As I am not very skilled, my times weren't that good, the best one was 10.09... But it was enough to beat some Honda Civics, Integras and VW GTis. But I really wanted to push it below 10 sec. So there I was, the fourth run - great start, no wheelspin, ideal gearchanges, everything was looking good. But then i noticed a big cloud of smoke coming from my exhaust. I stopped and some dude ran towards my with a fire extinguisher, I told him it's definitely not on fire. The look on his face - disappointment. Later I discovered that the head gasket was blown and the smoke was actually water streaming onto the pistons and evaporating rapidly. A friend of mine towed me back home, what a shame! I'll keep this one brief, because I'm really pissed right now...

Here are some photos:
My car on the start
And some crazy wheelie in a Fiat 500

Friday, September 2, 2011

BMW recalls 120k cars

Have you worked hard and finally decided to buy a decent car? Yes! So you pay a visit tou your local car dealership and for some unknown reasons it's a BMW dealership. But which one should I buy? There are so many models... You finally decide to go for a 5 series and because the petrol prices went through the roof recently you buy a diesel one. What a smart choice... or is it? One day a telephone wakes you up in the morning and it's a BMW employee histerically screaming your car is dangerous and in some rare cases it can even burn you to death. Oh hell no, I should have bought an Audi or a Mercedes instead, runs through your mind. Yes, you really should have... But that's not the point.

   It seems lately the car manufacturers really mess up. BMW now recalls 120k cars because of a fuel filter malfunction and it's not just the 5 series, it's actually 1, 5, 7, X3, X5 and X6! You think this is the only case?
  • GM recalled 1.5 million cars because of a screenwasher malfunction (fire possible)
  • GM recalled 250k cars because the seat belts weren't working properly (death possible)
  • GM recalled 100k Cadillac CTS's, the airbag didn't work (death possible) ...Jeez, GM, do something about it! 
  • Toyota recalled 100k Priuses (every single car of the first generation) - steering and transmission issue
   And the big one: Toyota recalled 14 million!! cars over the last two years, no biggie, just the gas pedal jammed flatout from time to time. This could lead to some serious performance! Or, you know, a nearby tree.

  I mean how could this even happen? Apparently they just don't test the cars properly to discover some serious issues. Shame on you! And you would think that Toyota's and BMW's build quality and reliability were bulletproof.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Whopping design!

To stop my eyes from bleeding every single time I look at my blog, I decided to do some design improvements. I've also changed the name of my blog, because writing about everything that comes to mind isn't somehow satisfactory enough. So what does the World on four wheels stand for? Well, you can expect some fresh information about anything that moves fast and has some wheels on it! I'm a big petrolhead, I really am. Anytime something interesting happens in the motoring world, I will be there to summarize it and share it with you, guys.

   Just what do you mean by that? I'm thinking some reports from car shows, reviews of the newest models, commentating on concept cars, even doing some mini-series on car legends, or a brief history of some famous brands. Maybe some tutorials, the possibilites really are endless. So hold on, because I'm gonna dip your head in petrol!

Any feedback on the new design or theme is as always appreciated.