Top Hybrid Cars

The BMW 5 Series was the 1st model show them the controversial 'flame' design which split opinion. However we have been fans so we were keen to ascertain if the newest design would also hit the spot. We think that BMW offers it right again using a dynamic and thoroughly contemporary design which keeps the 5 bang up to date.

The new 5 Series carries with it an assortment of EfficientDynamics technologies. There's Auto Start-Stop, optimum gearshift indicator, Brake Energy Regeneration, Active Aerodynamics and low rolling resistance tyres. In addition a state-of-the-art 8-speed automatic transmission using a longer final drive ratio to lessen engine revs at motorway speeds making an effort to achieve great fuel consumption.

In the driving stakes BMW has kept the trademark 50:50 weight distribution, which combined with the front-engined, rear-wheel drive layout, makes all the 5 Series more agile than rivals. There's also no reason to anticipate anything other than the excellent construction that we've become used to.

The latest 5 Series is evolutionary as opposed to revolutionary however when you're starting so near perfection this is not necessarily a bad thing. The 520d ED delivers strong real-world performance whilst achieving fuel economy that shames many city cars. With a brilliant mix of quality, style, performance and driving entertainment, it remains our favourite executive car.

It wasn't too long ago that Mercedes struggled to get involved with the guide but with a new array of super hi-tech engines that is certainly exactly about to change. Mercedes could have been the slowest of the German manufacturers to take fuel-efficient models to showcase, but the email address particulars are impressive.

Gone are the days when you could tell how big a Mercedes engine is just from exploring the badge. As a case in point, both E200d and E220d share a similar 2.0 litre engine. They even have the same compression ratio (an impressively high 15.5:1 since you ask) therefore the difference in power is more about engine management than old style engineering.

Either engine is much more than as much as the work of providing decent pace and given that they achieve the same official fuel consumption the option is likely to get down to budget. It is worth noting you will want to keep to the standard 17 inch wheels for the best efficiency with larger rims resulting in a hefty penalty (approximately 10 gCO2/km).

To maintain the E-Class ahead in the competition the conventional fit automatic gearbox now packs 9 ratios which works a way to explaining the wonderful official fuel consumption figures. Left to its own devices it will shuffle up into the highest gear possible however you usually takes power over affairs if you want to press on because of 'Dynamic Select' which supplies ECO, Comfort, Sport, Sport+ as well as a combination setting.

The latest E-Class takes the very best aspects of the previous model but adds state-of-the-art engines and a contemporary interior to hold it feeling fresh. The exec Mercedes has always lagged behind the 5 Series and XF in the driving stakes but it's now closer than previously meaning there is no longer a default option. Which one you choose will get down to personal taste since they all represent executive saloons towards the top of their game.

The renaissance of Jaguar continues to be one with the most surprising stories of recent years. In 2008 Tata bought the brand from Ford, who never quite reached grips in doing what to do with Jag, generating two extremely important decisions; Jaguar needed investment, and Tata put a good amount of money on the table, but crucially it didn't need management interference.

The XF is the newest confirmation that Tata was absolutely right. Jaguar never forgot developing contemporary executive saloons, it really wasn't permitted to. The XF takes your struggle to the BMW 5 Series, Audi A6, and Mercedes E-Class at once and is all of the better correctly.

Jaguar has invested heavily in integrating aluminium into its production models with fantastic results. The latest XF is really a lot lighter compared to competition and is definitely 4% heavier compared to smaller XE. Such a radical weight reduction plan gets a big thumbs up from us mainly because it benefits fuel consumption, handling and performance.

Alongside the advanced construction materials the XF also boast a new 'Ingenium' engine which finally provides Jaguar with a world class diesel engine. It also contributes towards the weight loss as a result of yet more aluminium and its compact size. At exactly the same time it really is capable of producing impressive power and torque figures which imbue the Jag with sprightly performance.

There never been much wrong with the method that the XF drives or looks, nonetheless it has never a really efficient engine. With this issue now firmly addressed the combination of proper official fuel economy, engaging dynamics, impressively low kerb weight and svelte looks make for a compelling proposition.

The Lexus GS has graced the web pages of Green Car Guide for many years, but because of the performance hybrid approach Lexus hasn't truly explored the fuel consumption potential in the system, preferring to benchmark fuel economy against petrol rivals and turn the wick up than chase after diesel figures and dilute the performance. That is as yet.

The 300h has very clearly been made to take your dream to diesel rivals with fuel economy, performance and price all mimicking the front-running German offerings. Lexus has long claimed that it is petrol/electric hybrid system are able to do exactly what a diesel can, and the repost may be 'prove it'. It appears that it lets you do pay being careful what you desire, as in writing the 300h is around the job and many surprisingly for example their email list price.

To extract better fuel economy there have been some big mechanical changes. Out goes the three.5 litre petrol engine and in comes a 2.5 direct injection unit which creates a restrained 178 bhp. This is linked with a detuned electric motor which produces yet another 140 bhp providing an extremely favourable total system creation of 220 bhp. Drive is still transmitted towards the rear wheels via a CVT gearbox which as ever is fantastic for fuel economy and frustrating in case you are pressing on.

So the Lexus can beat diesel rivals for pure grunt but think about torque? The petrol engine can't get close, with 163 lb ft at the lofty 4200 - 5400 rpm it won't see which way your competitors went. But as it ever was with hybrids, that's only half the storyline. The electric motor comes towards the rescue again, having a handy 221 lb ft available from idle it fills within the gaps excellently and keeps the GS 300h inside race.

The GS remains exquisitely finished and arguably is way better suited towards the lower output system because it is competent to drive rather than razor sharp. The 300h is not any more costly than diesel rivals, has competitive fuel economy and thanks to petrol emitting less CO2 than diesel, falls into VED band B and attracts substantially lower company car tax. It also has got the benefit from emitting no PM and intensely little NOx that diesel rivals should head for expensive exhaust after-treatment. The GS still isn't perfect nevertheless the 300h is a great enough package to make you think before ordering a diesel rival. It seems that Lexus wasn't joking in the end, petrol hybrids really will take on diesels at their unique game.

Autoparts, Cars

Chevrolet Camaro Invades Adelaide Motor Show

The 2007 Adelaide Motor Show will be invaded by a significant number of fabulous cars. But one sports coupe is expected to be a stunner. And that is the new Chevrolet Camaro. The Adelaide Motor Show is scheduled to start on March 28 and will end on April 1.

General Motors Corp. earlier confirmed the production and sale in North America in the first quarter of 2009. Significant elements of the Chevy body parts including the design and engineering is in the works at Fishermans Bend, Melbourne and this facility is the automaker?s centre of rear wheel drive proficiency.

Tony Stolfo, the GM global design executive, said that the Chevrolet Camaro was a prime example of GM?s ability to successfully work across continents on global projects. He added, ?Camaro?s Adelaide showing was also a great opportunity to gauge the Australian motoring public?s appetite for the iconic sports legend.?

?Chevrolet Camaro?s engineering and design work is happening right here, right now, at Fishermans Bend,? Stolfo said. ?We are very excited about helping style the look and developing the thrilling drive performance that are hallmarks of this iconic nameplate.? He added, ?We also want to see whether Australian buyers would want a Chevrolet Camaro in local dealerships. This motor show is an excellent opportunity to put that appetite to the test.?

The production of the new Camaro will start later next year and will go on sale in the first quarter of 2009. A production convertible will be unveiled in 2009.

?The new Camaro will be almost identical to the concept, a thoroughly modern interpretation of the 1969 model, considered by many to be the best design of the car?s first generation,? said Ed Welburn, GM?s global vice president of design. The new Camaro features independent rear suspension, Active Fuel Management?, which shuts off four cylinders to save fuel when the engine is lightly loaded, prominent front grille, high-performance brakes, unique five-spoke cast alloy wheels, vented disc brakes with 14-inch rotors, and prominent fender to boost performance. The sports coupe comes with a choice of manual and automatic transmissions, as well as V6 and V8 engines.

Ed Peper, the Chevrolet General Manager, said: ?We intend to make the all-new Camaro relevant to younger buyers while retaining its appeal to current fans. The beauty of the best Camaros is that they have always been beautiful to look at with performance that rivals expensive European GTs. Yet they were practical enough to drive every day and priced within the reach of many new-car buyers.?

Autoparts, Tires

Market Shifts To Small, Flashy And Sensible Cars

Automakers have earlier placed their 2007 aces on display at the South Florida International Auto Show. Regardless of the booming complaints about high gasoline prices, fuel-saver vehicles were outshined by fast, sensible yet costly gas-guzzlers at the Miami Beach Convention Center. This shift reflects what American enthusiasts really wanted in a vehicle.

Said auto show is flocked by luxury and sports vehicles from BMW, Lexus, Dodge, Hummer, Mercedes-Benz and other auto giants. Dodge Viper and Chevrolet Corvettes also made a big draw. Aficionados lined up to take a glimpse of the recent ground-breaking cars. Dealers, on the other hand, set up cameras so take photos of high-end sports cars.

Several Miami Beach residents were eyeing all-new Lexus LS460 which is priced at $64,000. On one hand, other fanatics were fascinated by Chevrolet's fuel-saving vehicles that use either gasoline or a mixture of gas and ethanol.

"People don't come to the show to see fuel-efficient cars. They come here to see the flashy cars. New at this year's show was the clutch of E85 flexible fuel SUVs and light trucks at the Chevrolet stand, offering estimated city mileage starting about 15 miles per gallon and 21 mpg on highways," says Terry McCabe, owner of a diesel-powered Volkswagen Beetle.

Chevrolet flaunted its Aveo, a compact station wagon priced at $14,000. It has a rating of 27/37 mpg in city/highways. Chevy also displayed its Camaro concept vehicle. The latter is a streamline version of a muscle car in the 1960s.

Hybrids from Toyota, Ford and Honda were also presented to the audience. These hybrids run on an electric motor and a gasoline-powered engine. They are priced from upward of $20,000 to more than $42,000.

Toyota, Honda and Nissan also displayed their cars that run on gasoline engines. Toyota Yaris, Honda Fit and Nissan Versa, also dragged the crowd closer. Luxurious cars like Porsche Turbo Coupe and BMW 760Li were also deemed stunners of the show. The former is priced at $147,000, while the latter is made cheaper at $132,000.

Autoparts, Cars, Tires

Replace A Dead Car Battery

You put your key in the ignition, turn and crank and nothing happens. The lights will not come on, the radio will not play and the car just will not start. Chances are your car battery is dead and it is time for a charge or a complete change.

How can you tell the difference?

You can start out by trying to charge the battery that is already in place. If you have a charger, fantastic. If not, you can get a jump from someone else.

Before trying to charge the battery, do check to see if its fluids are filled up and that the battery terminals are clean. If there is a lot of powder on the terminals, clean this off with a wet rag that has some baking soda on it.

Once the battery appears to be in good working order, go ahead and connect the charger or jumper cables. Make sure the charger is turned off or the jumping vehicle is not started at this point. To connect the cables, start with the red one and connect it to the positive terminal and the black to the negative. This will be the same setup for a charger or a jump. When the cables are in place, start the jumping car or turn on the charger. Do give the battery some time to charge up. If your battery has a charge indicator, make sure it is in the green zone before disconnecting.

If the battery charges and will hold the charge, this is all you need to do. If your battery will not accept a charge, you may need to purchase a replacement battery. To change out an old battery with a new one, follow these steps:

Purchase the right battery ? Check the size of the battery in your car owner manual or from the existing battery itself. Then go to a shop that sells batteries. If you cannot determine what size battery you need, an auto parts store can get this information from the make, model and year car you are driving.

Take out the old battery ? Make sure the car is off and then take off the negative cable from the battery. You will need to loosen the nut with a wrench to get this done. Now, pull up and twist on the end of the cable to get the terminal to come free. Repeat the process with the red cable, or positive. Once the cables are detached, you will need to remove the battery clamp. A combination wrench or socket and ratchet will be needed for this. Lift the battery out of the tray to fully remove it from the car.

Clean the tray ? Take the time to wash out any corrosion left behind in the tray. A water and baking soda mix will work fine here. Make sure the tray is dried off before proceeding to the next step.

Put the new battery in ? Lift the new battery into the tray and replace the hold-down clamp. Make sure both terminal ends are free of corrosion and then attach them to the appropriate positive or negative slots. Tighten down the connection.

At this point, your car should start normally. If it does not, you may have a problem that goes beyond the battery. If your new battery loses its charge rapidly, a problem with the alternator could be indicated.

Autoparts, Cars

Plug-in Hybrid Vehicles – The Next Step In Hybrid Evolution

Hybrid vehicles are selling like hot cakes and everyone is wondering where this will lead. Will hybrid technology evolve as fast as computers did, so that every 18 months the latest model is twice as efficient as the old model?

Unlike computer evolution, there is a road map of sorts for the journey ahead for hybrid car and truck owners. The current hybrids available from Toyota, Ford, Chevy, GMC, Honda and others are designated HEV vehicles, which stands for ?Hybrid Electric Vehicle.? This technology employs an internal combustion engine and an electric drive train. At city speeds the HEV runs on mostly electric power, reserving the expensive gasoline power for highway speeds. The electric batteries are recharged by capturing the energy that is normally wasted during braking and idling. So what could be better than that?

Plug-In Hybrid Electric vehicles (PHEVs) will do everything that their predecessors do, but they will be able to travel farther on electric-only power, and will be equipped with a plug-in battery charger for use at night when electric rates are lower. It has been estimated that if all U.S. vehicles were replaced with PHEVs today, national consumption of oil would go down by 70 to 90 percent by tomorrow. This happy scenario would make the U.S. completely self-sufficient for supplying its own oil needs.

The other good news about PHEVs is that even if every one was recharged at night by a coal-fired electric plant, the CO2 emissions involved would be half what they are today for standard gasoline and diesel powered engines.

After-market conversion kits now are in the works for do-it-yourself types who can?t wait for the factory version.

The automakers are already working on this next step and DaimlerChrysler has built a PHEV prototype of its Dodge Sprinter cargo van.

How much gasoline will you save with your new hybrid vehicle? If you drive 18,000 miles per year, you might use 600 gallons with a conventional vehicle, 400 gallons with an HEV and 80 gallons with a PHEV.

But the evolution of the automobile does not stop here. Eventually the PHEV will give way to the PHEV with batteries and hydrogen fuel cells. This will then give way to the PHEV with fuel cells that do almost all the work, no longer drawing much from the batteries. This will be eclipsed by the plug-in hydrogen fuel cell vehicle that no longer has a gasoline engine.
HEV: Hybrid Electric Vehicle PHEV: Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle PHEV-RFC: PHEV with regenerative hydrogen fuel cells RFCV: Regenerative hydrogen fuel cell vehicles will not have a gas motor

PHEV-RFC and RFCV systems will be plugged in for nighttime recharging, which will use grid electric power to split water into hydrogen and oxygen. The hydrogen fuel cell will be recharged with this home-made hydrogen, eliminating the need for hydrogen fuel stations. At this point in the evolution of the automobile, the vehicle itself will no longer pollute.

Autoparts, Cars

Maserati Mc12 A Winner

Designed to win races, the Maserati MC12 is actually sold as a road car, albeit it a very impractical one. Still what do you expect with a 620 bhp exotic car? The car looks just like the sports racing car that it is. To be fair, it is a real two-seater while the cars that race at Le Mans are more like single-seaters.

Only 25 MC12s were built initially, and quite a few were used for racing. Actually, when they heard about Maserati building the MC12 for the GTA championship (ooops, sorry for sale as a road car, was the official line, I think) some of the other companies threatened to withdraw as they thought the presence of the MC12 on the starting grid would make a farce of the whole series.

Although the Maserati MC12, is a true exotic car, it is based on the Ferrari Enzo. The whole idea was to upgrade Maserati's image following a checkered history. The glory of the 50s, when Maserati was a regular winner of Grand Prix, got lost in the mire of an economic downturn, when the company took the wrong turn more than once.

As Ferrari and Maserati are both part of the Fiat Group, and were in fact in the same sub-group, it made sense to modify the Enzo to get Maserati back as a winner. Now, Ferrari and Maserati have been put in different sub-groups, so this sort of collaboration is not expected in the future.

V-12 from Ferrari with 622 bhp

The Maserati MC12 looks completeley different from the Enzo, though,, with a long nose and very long tail. Where the Enzo is angular, the MC12 is curved. It has a carbon fiber body structure with steel sub-frames front and rear. Power comes from a 6.0 liter V-12 developing 622 bhp @ 7,500 rpm, and 480 lb ft (652 Nm) torque @ 5,500 rpm. A semi-racing engine to be sure. It is coupled to a semi-automatic six-speed sequential gearbox, developed by Ferrari in racing.

Suspension is by double wishbones, with inboard spring and damper units acting through pushrods. These are mounted horizontally as on the Enzo. The dampers have variable rates. Quite a car, but not as extreme as the Bugatti Veyron or the latest Saleen S7.

Following the racing success of the MC12, Maserati is now to build a more extreme version - the MC12 Corsa. The MC12 Corsa has a massively uprated Enzo V-12 engine giving about 750bhp. You can get this for about $1.3 million - or ?700,000 or Euros 1 million depending where you live.

But this is not a road car, nor will you be able to race it in any official categories ? so this is a trackday special at a huge price. Maserati plans to build about 12 MC12 Corsas a year.


Navistar To Continue Shipping Super Duty Diesel Engines

The Navistar International Corporation, the parent company of International Truck and Engine Corporation, earlier entered into a consent injunction with Ford Motor Co. in which it resumes the production and shipment of the 6.4L Power Stroke? diesel engines which are intended for the automaker?s Super Duty pickup trucks. The automaker, in the said injunction, is expected to pay without deductions.

The International Truck and Engine Corporation has been Ford?s exclusive diesel engine supplier for Super Duty pickup trucks since 1979. In February, the automaker launched the new 6.4L Power Stroke for the new Super Duty. In addition, Navistar produces 225,000 to 300,000 diesel engines for Ford trucks each year.

Ford said that they had spent $1.05 billion in warranty and repairs on the previous Navistar diesel engine in Ford's Super Duty pickup trucks. Navistar said that the automaker's warranty claim is false. Ford debited Navistar about $125 million early this year. Ford said the contract allows debiting however Navistar disagreed. The two companies also have a dispute about the appropriate price for the new engine. That makes up a disagreement amounting to over $300 million a year.

On 26 February, Navistar suspended the production of the diesel engine. According to the engine supplier, the suspension is resorted to because the automaker had stopped honoring the terms under which the engines were manufactured. The suspension made Ford seek a temporary restraining order from Judge John J. McDonald of the Circuit Court of Oakland County, Michigan.

On 28 February, Judge McDonald issued an order requiring the supplier to resume production of the engine and Ford to pay with no withholding until a hearing was held. After the scheduled hearing the judge asked the companies to continue discussion to settle whether an agreement can be reached before the trial is commenced. The companies met and the judge issued consent injunction that supersedes the temporary restraining order. The said order from the judge also requires both companies to meet and resolve the contract dispute regarding warranty claims and pricing.

"I think this (consent injunction) represents a new spirit of cooperation between the two companies," Navistar spokesman Roy Wiley said. The consent injunction assuages concerns of the derailment for one of Ford's most important launches of the year.

Ford's Louisville, Kentucky plant stopped production last week and was shut down Friday after Navistar suspended shipments of the engines. The pickup truck also serves as the one of the vital keys to make Ford recover from billions of dollars of losses in recent years.

The halt of engine production threatened to disrupt production of the Super Duty, one of the most profitable product lines of Ford. In the past, a shortage of engines also has disrupted production at a Ford plant in Kentucky. That situation is now avoided by the automaker. Super Duty trucks are the most popular vehicles in their class, averaging 50 percent market share in the heavy-duty pickup truck segment during the past years. Hence, to allow production to be disrupted is perilous to the automaker.

Ford acknowledged the agreement with Navistar and said in a statement it was pleased there would be no further disruptions to the production of the F-Series Super Duty. The automaker said its Kentucky plant began ramping production back up early this week and will be back at full speed on Monday.

In 2006, Ford sold 796,000 units of the F-series trucks and 40 percent of the figure is owned by the Super Duty. The redesigned Super Duty include a new grille that blends well with Ford bumper, factory installed trailer brake controller, upfitter switches, and new interior. The Powerstroke Diesel, which is the now the subject of the controversy, was also modified to generate torque from 560ft/lb to 570ft/lb - nonetheless, the peak power output is maintained at 325 horsepower.


Purchase Good Quality Car Audio To Enjoy Stress Free Driving

When you invest in a car it means that you are making a great investment. You will look out for every possibility by means of which you make your car wonderful, luxurious and comfortable. In that case, the car stereos or any other car audios are a great option.

To get the comfort of a stress-free driving, car audios are a great option. Whenever you consider the purchase of some sound system for your car, you should always think of some exclusive and a good quality piece. Be it any kind of car or any kind of road, you will just be relaxed with the sounds coming out from the car stereos.

Good quality car stereos will amplify the sound and also help you get rid of any kind of distortion in the sound. Make sure that the audio system which you buy for your car does not get overheated frequently or even at times. This can pose a risk to their life.

When you buy the car audios, consider your budget as well. You should also think from before the kind of sound system that you want to install in your car. This will help you in a better approach. The size of your car is also an important factor that you should deal with. This is because all kinds of car stereos do not fit well in all sizes of car.

Car audios generally have various components like head units, amplifiers, speakers and many other input devices. They all work together to provide a great quality sound. However, be careful to take a note of the instructions which are mentioned in the sets of the stereo systems.

It is better not to go for the cheaper ones. This is because the cheaper ones will have poor sound quality and perhaps they would also not last long. Poor quality sound systems can also cause a threat to your car. If you love your car, you should never try out these. Instead make an investment which will be worth its value.

After the investment comes the maintenance. It is up to you to maintain the car stereos properly. Proper maintenance of the stereos would ensure good quality sound.

Do not let the traffic jam outside be a cause of your headache. Make sure to purchase good car audio for your car so that they can provide you the ultimate relief that you are looking for.


Aftermarket Adjustable Rear Control Arms for MINIs and BMWs

The main difference between aftermarket rear control arms and stock rear control arms is the difference in the amount of adjustability. Many of the later BMW and MINI models come with non-adjustable rear arms that don't allow you to change the camber. Some of the newer models do come with adjustable rear arms, but only allow for a camber adjustment between 0 and 0.5 degrees. This is better than no adjustment at all, but usually is not enough to reach a desirable degree of camber upon suspension alterations. Since stock rear control arms in MINIs and BMWs offer little to no camber adjustability, if you choose to lower your vehicle with a performance spring set, you should strongly consider investing in aftermarket adjustable rear control arms. Anytime you add a drop to your vehicle with performance springs, a considerable amount of negative camber is added to the rear tires. Excessive negative camber in the rear can negatively affect manueverabiliy and control. Additionally, the inside of rear tires wear out quicker. The general consensus on acceptable rear camber ranges from 0 to -1.5 degrees. When aftermarket spring sets are added and used to drop the vehicle, the amount of negative camber increases. Say for instance you decide to drop your BMW or MINI 1.5 inches. This amount of drop equates to about -3 degrees of camber on the rear wheels - 100% more than the aforementioned acceptable amount! Even if your BMW or MINI stock arms are adjustable, they will probably only be able to reduce camber to -2.5 degrees due to limited extension. With aftermarket rear control arms, you can make camber adjustments from anywhere between 0 and 4 degrees. Aftermarket arms for BMWs and MINIs from reputable designers can reduce negative camber and increase handling. If you're thinking about dropping your car a few inches and already have a rear sway bar installed, performance-grade adjustable arms are a must. Too much negative camber in the rear disrupts the benefits of your swaybar. If you've installed a swaybar, especially on your MINI, you've installed it because you want to reduce understeering. Negative camber in the rear will increase understeering and, consequently, decrease the effectiveness of your swaybar. When extenable rear arms are taken advantage of, you're able to retain the benefits of your swaybar and lower your vehicle to a desirable level. Lastly, BMWs and MINIs have four rear control arms - two upper and two lower. It's only necessary to replace lower ones with performance-grade extendable arms to effectively decrease camber. Upper arms may remain stock, adjustable or not. After replacing your stock rear arms with aftermarket ones, expect a huge difference in handling and easier camber adjustments.

Autoparts, Tires

Pontiac, Toyota Bags Award At The Chicago Auto Show

In connection with the ongoing 2007 Chicago Auto Show, Consumer Guide Automotive honored the Pontiac G8 and the Toyota Highlander as the winners of their Most Significant New Introduction Awards. This is only the second year for the award and yet it is valued highly around the automotive circle.

The reverence given to the award is due to the fact that Consumer Guide Automotive has been a part of the automotive industry for more than 35 years. Throughout its lengthy history, the leading source of new and used car reviews has proven time and time again that they are the best at what they do. And this year?s awards will no doubt be a big boost to the popularity of the two vehicles recognized.

The aim of the awarding body in giving out such award was outlined by Kirk Bell, the associate publisher of Consumer Guide Automotive. ?With so many factors to consider, car shopping can be n overwhelmingly confusing experience. By naming the most significant new car and truck introductions, we?re helping car buyers everywhere identify vehicles worth consideration. Visitors attending the nation?s premier consumer show here in Chicago can see the standout vehicles firsthand.?

Indeed, these vehicles standout among the lot of other automobiles being shown off at the Chicago Auto Show - just like the rear-wheel drive Pontiac G8. The full sized sedan shown at this year?s Chicago Auto Show is just a prototype, however, most of the features and specifications that it has at present will also be present on the mass produced version of the car. The car is configured as a rear-wheel drive one but its performance is of high caliber, thanks to the efforts by GM?s Holden division which is based in Australia in developing the design of the Pontiac G8. The performance car exhibits some of the exterior designing of the Pontiac GTO and not the classic design. In fact, it holds that of the latest GTO which was discontinued again this year.

The Toyota Highlander, a mid-size SUV, is also making waves in the said segment. The sport utility vehicle was eligible for the award since it is a completely redesigned vehicle. Its only resemblance to present models available in the market is the vehicle?s one-piece folding rear seat. The latest model is loosely based on another award winning car from Toyota, the Camry, and it is longer and wider than its predecessor. The latest Highlander model is four inches longer and three inches wider than the current model. The Highlander also comes in a hybrid version which shows that even SUV?s can be environment-friendly and also very fuel efficient.

In choosing the awardees, Consumer Guide only took into consideration new cars or completely redesigned cars introduced at the 2007 Chicago Auto Show. A point system is devised by Consumer Guide to determine the winner in the car and truck categories. Each editor allocates 25 points for all the entries but can only give out as much as ten points for a single vehicle. The vehicle with the most number of votes on both the car and truck segment is judged as the winner.

Toyota is the back-to-back winner in the truck segment since the Toyota Tundra has won the same award last year. The Tundra along with the Lexus 350 ES were the first winners of the awards.

The premier provider of new and used car reviews test drives more than 200 cars each year to provide its readers the most useful information concerning new or used cars. Throughout their existence, the institution has serve as a stockpile of knowledge about cars. In a way, they are like a Volvo master cylinder that stores brake or clutch fluid for immediate use when needed.


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