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The SRT Viper makes its triumphant return ...Pg. 26
ALSO INSIDE: Performance
Are manual cars a dying breed? ...pg 43
Roush RS3 Mustang ROUSH Performance strives to create the perfect Mustang ...pg 12
Porsche cayman s
The second-generation Porsche Cayman has arrived...pg 22
VW’s display of past and present cars at its Wolfsburg Factory...pg 49
Winter tire guide
Carbon Madness This is said to be the only 2013 Pagani Huayra in North America ...pg 36
Our 2013 RPM Winter Tire Guide ...pg 30 Starting Lines--------------------------------------------------------------- 4 Road Test: Jaguar XK-R - ------------------------------------------------ 15 Road Test: Kia Cadenza -------------------------------------------------- 18 Road Test: Mazda6 ------------------------------------------------------- 20 Road Test: Volvo XC60 --------------------------------------------------- 25 Test Fleet ------------------------------------------------------------------- 28 The Truck Guy-------------------------------------------------------------- 35 Plugged In ----------------------------------------------------------------- 40 Classic Corner ------------------------------------------------------------- 51 New Product Showcase -------------------------------------------------- 52 Parting Shots -------------------------------------------------------------- 54
Cheetah George Pappas’ 1967 Pontiac Beaumont Cheetah SD 427 ...pg 46
RPM Oct / Nov 2013
Volume 15, Issue No. 5 October/November 2013 Publisher / Editor: Dean Washington email@example.com Associate Publisher: David Symons firstname.lastname@example.org Circulation: Brenda Washington email@example.com New Car Editor Gerry Frechette firstname.lastname@example.org Managing Editor / Graphic Designer Jordan Allan email@example.com Sales & Marketing Elaine Fontaine firstname.lastname@example.org Contributing Writers/Photographers: Jordan Allan Gerry Frechette Cam Hutchins Arch Linsao Nigel Matthews Giancarlo Pawelec Russell Purcell Budd Stanley
RPM Oct / Nov 2013
BMW Unveils M4 Concept B
MW proudly unveiled its concept M4 Coupe at its opening media reception at the annual Pebble Beach/Monterey automobile weekend. The all-new M4, which is replacing the ever popular M3 coupe, was debuted in the colour “Aurum Dust” which was developed exclusively for this model. Although nothing has been made official by BMW, Michael Harley of Autoblog reports that an all-new 3.0L inline 6-cylinder engine is expected to be under the hood when the car hits dealers and will make about the same horsepower as the previous 4.0L V8 but with more torque. The sporty coupe will have many carbon fibre reinforced plastics (CFRP) pieces such as the front splitter, roof, and the rear diffuser, all in the name of making the car as lightweight as possible. The M4 will feature the BMW M double-bar kidney grille marked with the M4 emblem, and will include twin tailpipes which have come to be known as a classic M characteristic. Toyota Happy to Turn Page on 2009-2010 Recalls A report by the Canadian Press states that Toyota Canada has agreed to settle consumer claims related to losses from the company’s recalls in 2009-2010. Around 14,500 2010 Lexus RX350 and RX450h models were recalled in Canada in those years thanks to suspected throttle control problems. The recalls in Canada was part of the global recall of more than 14-million Toyota vehicles to fix numerous problems highlighted by sticky gas pedals and floor mats. The class action settlement is pending approval from Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia, and Saskatchewan courts and if approved, the settlement will take care of
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STARTING LINES the claims against Toyota for all Canadian owners of Toyota vehicles with an electronic control system. Eligible owners will get an enhanced warranty for at least three years to cover repairs and to have a brake override system installed in their vehicles. If the ownerâ€™s vehicle is not compatible with the system, they will instead receive a cash settlement. Infiniti Emerg-E Hybrid Concept More details are beginning to emerge about Infinitiâ€™s Emerg-E Concept Car that originally debuted at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show. Based on the Lotus Evora platform, the Emerge-E features an all-aluminum
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RPM Oct / Nov 2013
bonded chassis beneath a carbon fibre skin. The hybrid powertrain is located behind the cockpit, and has two electric motors, one on each wheel, each with its own single-speed transmission, which eliminates the need for a differential. The motors together produce 402 horsepower with 738 poundfeet of torque. A 15-kWh lithium-ion battery is placed behind the seats and gives the electric motors their power. The range of the electric motors is only 50 km, so a 1.2L 3-cylinder gasoline engine rated at 50 horsepower is thrown into the mix for use when the battery pack is dead. Infiniti has given no word as to whether or not the Emerge-E will make it into production, but either way, it will be learning some valuable lessons on what it takes to make a performance electric vehicle. Mitsubishi Ready to Launch All-New Mirage The already crowded subcompact car class has yet another entry with the 2014 Mitsubishi Mirage, slated to enter dealerships sometime in October. The brand-new five-door, three-cylinder hatchback is among the lowest priced vehicles in its class, with the entry level ES model with a 5-speed manual transmission only costing $12,498. Fuel economy will obviously be a strong selling point for the Mirage, and Mitsubishi boasts numbers of 4.9L/100 km combined for the CVT automatic transmission, and 5.3L/100 km combined for the manual transmission version. There are two trim levels, ES and SE, and both come standard with 5-speed manual transmission, with the CVT (continuously variable transmission)
STARTING LINES VW Golf R
optional. Even with the entry model, you will not be hard-pressed to find great safety features, with seven standard airbags, anti-lock brakes, and active stability control, among others, all included on the base model. Look for the Mirage in all 88 of Mitsubishi’s dealerships across Canada. Ford Fiesta ST Crossing the Pond to North America When the Ford Fiesta made its return in 2011, Ford decided to keep the performance model, the Fiesta ST, strictly in Europe. Thankfully, it has come to its senses and decided to release it here in North America just in time for the 2014 refresh of the entire Fiesta lineup. Under the hood of the ST, you’ll find a 1.6L turbocharged 4-cylinder engine pushing out 197 horsepower and 202 lb-ft of torque, paired to a 6-speed manual transmission. A sound symposer allows some of
the throaty engine noise to be heard in the cabin, giving you a more authentic sports car feel. The ST also features a different front mesh grille than the regular Fiesta, a body kit which includes a spoiler, unique wheels, and stiffer suspension, and optional Recaro seats. Next Generation VW Golf R to Receive Major Power Upgrade Volkswagen has recently unveiled the next generation Golf R that’s received major upgrades. Returning is the same 2.0L turbocharged engine, only this time it has received a 40-horsepower gain over the previous model, bringing the total up to an astounding 296 horsepower. Paired with 280 lb-ft of torque, VW has created one of the most powerful production four-cylinder engines in the world. All of that power is transferred to the road via VW’s all-wheel drive system, 4MOTION. The Golf R now features a new sport suspension, a progressive variable-ratio steering system, and a stability control system that can be deactivated for track driving. Another option is a dynamic chassis control system that features a race mode. Despite the extra power and superior handling, the new Golf R consumes less fuel than its predecessor due to a stop-start system, battery regeneration, and the optional DSG transmission. The R will feature specially-designed bumpers, side skirts, and 18-inch aluminum alloy wheels to distinguish itself from its GTI brother, and although the R coming to Canada has yet to be confirmed, we would be hard-pressed to find a reason why they wouldn’t bring this performance hatchback to our shores. Fiat Shows Off Its New “Naughty” 500 At this year’s Concorso Italiano in Monterey, California, Fiat debuted what its calling a new, “naughty” 500 called the Cattiva. Cattiva in Italian can describe a person or situation that is naughty yet cool, and using that inspiration, the people at Fiat designed a factory customized car that features a blacked-out look with an aggressive demeanour. The new model takes either the 500 Sport or 500 Turbo models
RPM Oct / Nov 2013
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and equips them with blacked-out headlights, taillights and parking lamp bezels, and unique 16-inch Hyper Nero aluminum wheels with performance tires. The roof and spoiler of the car are painted black, and it is available in either red, copper, straight black, silver, granite crystal, white, and light blue exclusively for 500 Sport models. The interior of the Cattiva has also received upgrades such as a Matte Nero instrument panel, Nero leather-wrapped sport steering wheel and shift knob, and Nero-trimmed seats, just to name a few. Cadillac’s Newest Concept is Turning Some Heads Cadillac recently decided to show off its latest concept vehicle, the Elmiraj. The Elmiraj is a modern update to the classic two-door grand coupe format, and features an elegant design paired with rear-wheel drive performance. Under the hood of the Elmiraj, you’ll find a 4.5L twin-turbocharged V8 engine that delivers an estimated 500 horsepower and 500 lb-ft of torque. At 205 inches in overall length, the Elmiraj’s exterior looks powerful with two vents in the hood to act as outlets for hot air from the engine. The 22x9-inch wheels look incredible, and the VSport badging is a new level for Cadillac, coming in just below the high-performance V-Series. Inside the Elmiraj, you’ll find
10 RPM Oct / Nov 2013
Porsche 911 Celebrates 50th Anniversary with Special Edition In 1963, Porsche unveiled the very first 911 at the Frankfurt Motor Show, and since then, the car has grown to be one of the most beloved and iconic sports cars of all time. It’s ever so fitting that Porsche again chose the Frankfurt Motor Show to present a limited edition 50th Anniversary Edition model of the 911. The special-edition car is based on the 911 Carrera S which, much like the original, will feature a flat-six rear engine and rear wheel drive. A Powerkit upgrade will be added to the Carrera S’ 3.8L flat-six engine that raises the power output to 400 horsepower with 430 pound-feet of torque, driving it from 0-60 mph (0-96 km/h) in just 3.8 seconds with the PDK gear box and 4.2 seconds with the seven-speed manual. The 50th Anniversary 911 will feature a choice of two unique colours, a dark graphite grey and a lighter geyser grey metallic. In another great touch, Porsche will only be making 1963 of these vehicles to correlate with the original year in which the 911 was released.
STARTING LINES More Details of New Subaru WRX & STI Beginning to Emerge Subaru teased us with the unveiling of its new WRX concept at the 2013 New York Auto Show, and now more details have begun to emerge of just what’s in store for the next-generation WRX and STI. According to a report in Automotive News, Subaru could be preparing to roll back the curtain on the
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FENDER FlaRE STylES new production model at November’s 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show. The same report states that the new model will be available in four-door only, which means fans of the fivedoor hatchback version will be disappointed. The report in Automotive News also claimed that under the hood of the all-new WRX you might find a 2.5L flat four-cylinder engine that will push out around 265 horsepower. Audi Unveils Updated A8 at Frankfurt Audi proudly debuted the 2015 Audi A8 at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show in Frankfurt, Germany, and while this is not a complete redesign, it appears Audi has improved enough that it will remain in the running amongst those looking for a big luxury sedan. The hood, grille, and front bumper feature a more sculpted design and the lower edge of the headlights is now straight. Speaking of headlights, Audi has added the latest in headlight technology with Matrix LED headlights that allow the system to react precisely to other vehicles on the road while making sure they’re always illuminating the road. The engines also received upgrades, as the 3.0L V6 and the 4.0L V8 engines both saw an increase of 20 horsepower, and the two diesel engines have also had their power improved with the 3.0L V6 receiving an extra 8 horsepower and the 4.2L V8 diesel getting 34 more horsepower to go along with its already impressive 627 lb-ft of torque.
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Race on Sunday, sell on Monday
ROUSH Performance strives to create the perfect Mustang Story by Russell Purcell, photos by Russell Purcell, Ford and ROUSH Performance
in both the SCCA Trans-Am and the IMSA Camel GT series before the decision was made to take aim at NASCAR with Roush Fenway Racing.
When Roush-engineered teams are on the grid, the competition gets nervous, as Jack’s dedication to performance has given him a winning record that is unparalleled in any paddock. In an effort to capitalize on this success Jack decided to broaden the company’s scope to include a division dedicated to the development and production of speed equipment for those consumers looking for enhanced performance on the track and on the road. ROUSH Performance Products was born, and the venture offers customers a line of high-performance vehicles (currently based on Ford Mustang and Raptor models), crate engines, and aftermarket components. The company campaigns a pair of ROUSH Boss 302Rs in the GRAND-AM Continental Tire Challenge series under the ROUSH Performance banner. One of these cars is piloted by Jack Roush’s son, Jack Jr., who now has back-to-back victories at Daytona to his credit. This racing operation serves as a rolling test bed which allows the
here are few names in North American automotive circles that garner as much respect as that of Jack Roush, and unlike some of his peers, Roush has earned this respect at the track. As an automotive engineer, Jack Roush was quick to recognize that the arduous task of product research and development could be hastened by getting involved in motor sport activities. After completing his studies, Jack began his engineering career working at Ford, but he also served a brief stint at Chrysler before deciding to test his entrepreneurial skills and set up his own engineering firm. ROUSH Enterprises was founded in 1976 with the goal of producing cutting-edge racing vehicles that would help showcase Jack’s incredible engineering knowledge and allow him to feed his competitive spirit. The company now serves as the parent for ROUSH Racing as well as ROUSH Industries (a freelance engineering firm) and ROUSH Performance (an automotive aftermarket development company), both headquartered in Livonia, Michigan. The blood in Jack Roush’s veins pumps Ford blue, so it would come as no surprise that he selected Ford vehicles as the foundation upon which he would build his business empire. Jack’s motorsport resume began with a successful five-year partnership with Wayne Gapp which saw the two campaign Pro Stock cars in NHRA, IHRA, and AHRA drag racing events. A switch to road racing followed as Roush partnered with German firm Zakspeed to develop racing vehicles for Ford. Success here helped the company become a dominant force
12 At The Wheel RPM Oct / Nov 2013
rear anti-wheel hop upper control arm. These components work in harmony to deliver the power to the ground and keep the tires on the pavement. As a result this car feels very dynamic when pushed to its limits. There is a slight hint of body roll exhibited during hard cornering manoeuvres, but the specially developed Cooper Zeon RS3-S tires provide such high levels of grip that you are willing to carry a little extra speed through the turns as you explore the car’s true handling capabilities.
firm to develop its products more quickly, prove their durability, and of course, display their performance in a competitive environment. It is from this trial by fire that cars like the RS3 are born. Recently I had the opportunity to spend a few days behind the wheel of a 2014 ROUSH Stage 3 (RS3) Mustang. ROUSH Performance offers the RS3 in three distinct flavours - Phase 1, Phase 2 and Phase 3. Phase 1 cars deliver 575 hp and 505 lb-ft of torque. For those enthusiast drivers looking to be the big dog in the neighbourhood, ROUSH offers Phase 2 ($1,200) and Phase 3 ($2,200) upgrades which boost horsepower to 625 hp and 675 hp respectively. Phase 2 and Phase 3 upgrades are significant as the stock 5.0litre Coyote engine is removed and replaced with a hand-built Ford Racing “Aluminator” engine and a host of upgrades which will help the driver deliver this power to the ground efficiently, effectively, and dependably. The test vehicle provided to me by Key West Ford was a Phase 1 variant, which is the most popular model in the ROUSH lineup, and after putting it through its paces, I can understand why. The RS3 began life as a Canadian-spec 2014 Mustang GT 5.0 before being shipped south to Roush Performance where it was painstakingly transformed into a four-wheel, apex-carving athlete. While most would consider the stock Mustang GT to be a competent performance car out of the box, experienced drivers will find it still feels pretty sloppy in the handling department and a little underpowered. The factory V8 delivers 420 hp and 390 lb-ft of torque and is capable of acceleration from 0-100 km/h in 4.7 seconds. ROUSH technicians begin by fitting the Mustang’s V8 with the ROUSH R2300 supercharger. This revolutionary design employs Eaton’s Twin Vortices Series (TVS) technology which promotes more efficient flow of air into the engine, as well as improved noise and vibration characteristics. ROUSH partners this ultra-dependable blower with its own high-efficiency intercooler to boost engine output to an impressive 575 hp and 505 lb-ft of torque. This healthy increase in power output transforms the Mustang into a much more capable machine, and runs from 0-100 km/h can be executed in a mere 4.0 seconds. It is truly amazing how much more satisfying the driving experience is with the addition of the supercharger. The clutch is stiff, but more manageable than the calf-buster Ford fits to the current Shelby, and the short throw, six-speed gearbox is a pleasure to row through. Power is readily available at virtually any engine speed so the driver will be confident that he or she can power through just about any situation that may arise. With such prodigious levels of power on tap, it would be nearly impossible to drive the RS3 comfortably if ROUSH elected to retain the Mustang’s factory suspension and brakes. ROUSH chassis engineers have spent thousands of hours developing, testing, and racing their cars in search of the perfect setup for the RS3 with regards to acceleration, handling, braking and overall ride quality. The ROUSH Performance suspension system features custom-valved shock absorbers, rate- matched coil springs, a larger, stiffer front stabilizer bar, and a
14 At The Wheel RPM Oct / Nov 2013
If the handling and improved acceleration aren’t impressive enough, you will be smitten by the raucous rumble generated from the throaty ROUSH Performance exhaust system. This car seemingly erupts as it comes to life with the twist of the key and a blip of the throttle. This is not a stealth machine so prepare to be the centre of attention wherever you go. During my test period I received a pretty even mix of positive and negative reactions to the RS3’s inescapable roar, but to my ears it was sweet music. The RS3 benefits from the sleek retro styling of the current Mustang GT, but the addition of a ROUSH Performance body kit and lightweight, five-spoke wheels help give the car a more menacing appearance and real curb appeal. The car features a modified upper and lower grille treatment designed to increase airflow to the engine and brakes, and a low-rise hood scoop. A full complement of front, side, and rear splitters help manage airflow under, over and around the car. A subtle rear spoiler and optional side window louvres add extra sporty flair, while bold, two-colour graphics and discreet badging help complete the rather aggressive look. While the exterior styling upgrades demark this car as something special, the interior treatment is largely factory Ford. This is not necessarily a bad thing, as the Mustang’s interior is far superior to that of its immediate rivals the Chevrolet Camaro and Dodge Challenger, but for an as-tested price of almost $80,000, I would expect a few more frills than a console plaque, billiard-ball shift knob, Alcantara suede steering-wheel and a tacked-on boost gauge. The optional Recaro seats are a necessity if you want to extract the most from the car, as these deep sport buckets offer excellent support when carving through the twisty bits of your favourite back roads. I have been fortunate enough to drive the latest Shelby GT500 as well as the Mustang Boss 302, and while I enjoyed my time behind the wheel of both of these steeds, I came away from the RS3 wearing a bigger smile. The Shelby is a beast but is difficult to master, and it really beats you up in everyday traffic. The Boss 302 is a star, but it is now extinct, and as much as it delivers a very similar handling experience to the RS3, it comes up short in the power department. In reality, I think that the ROUSH RS3 offers the enthusiast driver a package that represents the perfect medium when compared to these two cars, as it is blindingly fast, distinctively appointed, and oh-so-fun to drive. If this story has piqued your interest, I would suggest that you pay a visit to a ROUSH dealer near you and experience a test drive. The dealer network is comprised of a select group of Ford dealers that have both a high customer satisfaction index as well as the right mix of specialized equipment and personnel required to work on high-performance vehicles like the RS3. My local ROUSH dealer is Key West Ford in New Westminster, B.C., and one visit there revealed that from top to bottom, this store is dedicated to performance.
ROAD TEST - JAGUAR XK-R
This Cool Cat Leaves an Impression 2013 Jaguar XK-R Story and photos by Russell Purcell
he big news over at Jaguar is the arrival of the slinky F-Type roadster, a car which represents the brand’s first true sports car in nearly four decades. While two-seat sports cars have their appeal (picture lazy Sunday drives or a weekend cruise to the beach), they tend to fall short in the practicality department when it comes to fitting into our daily lives. This is where big grand touring (GT) machines like Jaguar’s sexy XK-R come into play. With seating for four, and a fairly substantial cargo area, it is easier for the consumer to justify their purchase. Although the styling of the current XK-R has been around for six years, the all-aluminum bodywork has retained its curvaceous appeal. The long hood and teardrop design of the car reflect the designs of the great GT cars of the 1960s and 1970s, but also help the Jaguar establish its own identity in this age of largely cookiecutter designs. The proportions and body lines of the XK-R hold up so well esthetically, that this is one of the few automotive designs that is often described using those adjectives usually reserved for describing the fine features of a beautiful woman. It is hard to look away from this shapely cat, and even while at a standstill, it appears to be ready to pounce.
The interior is as refined as any proper English lad should be, but it is starting to show its age. Many of its luxury appointments and accessories seem dated when compared to those fitted to its closest rivals. The navigation system is seriously behind the times, and the operation of the seven-inch touch control screen is awkward and proved frustrating. All is not lost, though, as the quality of the car’s leather hides and various trim pieces is impressive, as is the very powerful Bowers and Wilkins audio system. As a rather tall, and broad, fellow, I appreciated the amount of leg-, hip- and head-room offered me while seated behind the wheel. However, the rear seating area is best reserved for children, briefcases and gym bags. Should the need arise to transport larger items, the rear seatbacks fold down to expand available cargo capacity which increases the XK-R’s overall utility. Under the hood resides a proven 5.0-litre supercharged V8 engine that produces a healthy 510 horsepower and 461 lb-ft of torque. This potent package delivers power to the rear wheels through a ZF-engineered, six-speed automatic gearbox equipped with two of the best paddle shifters in the business. Acceleration is impressive from a standstill, as runs to 100 km/h can be executed in a mere 4.8 seconds, and the broad torque band and carefully-selected gear ratios help ensure that the driver will always have access to extra power when required. Big, 20-inch alloy wheels wrapped in sticky performance tires do their best to keep this big cat in contact with the pavement, but extra attention is required when the road surface is wet, as it is easy to get the car’s tail wagging if you are too heavy on the throttle. The throaty
Styling cues unique to the R model include an aggressive front fascia, complete with chin spoiler, hood mounted air intakes, subtle side skirts, and a rear diffuser. To complete the sporty look, the car is fitted with a deck lid spoiler and quad exhaust pipes. One glance at the car and you will recognize that it has been designed for high-performance driving, but the overall appearance is classy and subdued, rather than over-the-top. At The Wheel RPM Oct / Nov 2013 15
ROAD TEST - JAGUAR XK-R For those drivers looking to extract the most from the XK-R, it is possible to adjust many of the car’s performance and handling settings via a console mounted button. Selecting sport mode further sharpens the feel of the steering, suspension settings, engine mapping and throttle response. The traction and stability systems will also be optimized to permit the driver to extract the most from the car.
roar of the V8 engine is delivered through an active exhaust system which emits a pleasant rumble when the vehicle is operating under normal driving conditions, but when the car is driven in anger, this Jag wails for attention. If you listen closely, trained ears will pick up the subtle whine of the big Eaton supercharger. The XK-R employs a more aggressive suspension setup featuring up-rated springs and dampers, as well as a 10mm reduction in ride height. Although the resulting ride is firm, it doesn’t beat you up, and enthusiast drivers will appreciate the feedback it transmits through the seat. On a positive note, there is very little body roll exhibited during high-speed cornering manoeuvres, and the car tracks straight as an arrow. The typical XK-R buyer is a person who loves to drive, so this car has been engineered and equipped to deliver the goods. Highperformance brakes are on board to help rein in your enthusiasm, and they seem to stand up to the abuse that comes with aggressive driving and remained fade free throughout the testing period.
16 At The Wheel RPM Oct / Nov 2013
The Jaguar XK-R is a car that makes a statement about its owner, an individual who appreciates the car ’s classic lines, grace and prestige. It is not the latest, or greatest, example of its kind, but the XK-R is a piece of rolling sculpture that leaves an impression on those individuals lucky enough to catch a glimpse of one in the wild.
SPECIFICATIONS Base price (MSRP): ...............................................................................$109,125 Price as tested: ......................................................................................$117,250 Type: ................................................................... 4-passenger, 2-door, GT coupe Layout: . ................................................................................. Front-engine, RWD Engine: . ...........................5.0L Supercharged direct injection DOHC, 32 valve V8 Horsepower: ..................................................................510 @ 6,000-6,500 rpm Torque (lb-ft): .................................................................461 @ 2,500-5,500 rpm Transmission: ......................6-speed automatic with paddle shifting capabilities Curb weight: ...................................................................... 1,753 kg. ( 3,864 lb.) Fuel efficiency (L/100km): ................. City 13.9 (20.3 mpg); Hwy 9.2 (30.7 mpg)
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ROAD TEST - KIA CADENZA accents found throughout and the analog clock featured on the dash give the inside of the car a very classy and upscale look. Under the Cadenza’s hood, you’ll find the same 3.3-litre GDI (gasoline direct injected) V6 engine found in the latest version of the Sorento, both paired to an incredibly smooth six-speed transmission that always seems to select the right gear for any situation. The engine makes a fairly impressive 293 horsepower and although you won’t mistake it for a sports car, it has enough power to get the heart pumping when you put your foot into it. Add that to standard steering wheel mounted paddle shifters, and you may be able to have more fun in the Cadenza than you originally thought. To even further enhance a performance feel, a sport-tuned fully-independent suspension with a MacPherson strut setup is found in the front, and the rear suspension is a multilink design, to give you that sporty handling to go along with the extra power.
First Foray Kia enters the luxury segment Story and photos by Jordan Allan, photos courtesy of Kia Canada
ake just one look at the all-new 2014 Kia Cadenza’s slick body lines, aggressive stance, and big flashy wheels, and you’ll swear you’re looking at a vehicle straight out of one of those German manufacturer’s showrooms. But believe it or not, you’re looking at what Kia is calling its new flagship vehicle, and is its first entry in North America into the ever-crowded luxury sedan segment. The front-wheel-drive Cadenza shares a platform with the similar looking, but smaller mid-sized Optima with the only differences being the Cadenza’s unique front sub frame in order to house the V6 engine that isn’t available in the Optima, and the body structure from the rear seats back. Although aesthetically, the Cadenza appears to be a much bigger version of the Optima with a few styling tweaks, there is only a 5.2-inch (13.2 cm) difference in the overall length and less than an inch difference in both overall height and width.
Sitting in the driver’s seat of the Cadenza, I found it to be incredibly comfortable thanks to the 12-way adjustability plus the heating and cooling options, but being nearly 6’4”, my head constantly grazes the roof, even with the seat as low as it can go. The sport-tuned suspension handles any curve or corner you can throw at it with ease, and the overall ride of the car is one of the smoothest I’ve ever experienced. You barely notice when the transmission switches gears, practically no road or wind noise enter the cabin at all, and the steering feels effortless even when trying to manoeuvre this big sedan in a tight parking lot. Our Premium test model was equipped with some great safety features such as Blind Spot Detection System (BSD) and Lane Departure Warning System (LDWS), both of which provide audible and visual alerts to the driver to prevent any sort of accident.
The Cadenza is yet another step for Kia to further distance the company from the notion that it only produces simple, inexpensive cars that get you from point A to point B, and represents a worthy entry into the luxury sedan segment. This car can go feature-for-feature with most other cars in its category, and can do so at a fraction of the cost of most of its Inside the Cadenza, you’ll competitors. If this is what Kia had in mind through its first foray into the find a beautifully laid-out luxury class, we look forward to seeing what it comes up with next. interior full of high-quality material and the latest in technology features. The gauge cluster features a seven-inch highresolution LCD screen that displays tons of useful information such as navigation instructions and entertainment options. All of the audio and climate controls are well laid-out, and centring the front console is an eight-inch touchscreen featuring Kia’s latest UVO eServices system and a standard back up camera. Our Premium test model also featured a full-length panoramic sunroof, power tilt-and-telescopic steering wheel, premium Nappa leather seats and a power rear sunshade for the back window, just to name a few. The standard 12-speaker Infinity sound system showcased an incredible sound, and the backseats had more than enough room to comfortably sit three adults. To top it all off, the wood 18 At The Wheel RPM Oct / Nov 2013
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ROAD TEST - MAZDA6 ability and a build quality that feels just a touch better than most, even if the better materials were not used. And to my amazement, a sixspeed manual gearbox. Who puts a manual in a mid-size sedan? Mazda does, that’s who. And what wonders did that simple little option do for the character of the car. Mazda says it is tuned to mimic the MX-5’s manual shifter, and while a cable-operated unit just doesn’t compare to the direct connection of a rear-wheel drive gearbox, the hard work did not go unnoticed, as its smooth, almost flicking nature increased the driving feel of the car. All Mazdas have a little more life, a little more fun injected into them, but this 6 with a manual puts the rest of the segment to shame. On the road, the car was taut and responsive and had the manners of many much more expensive German machines, albeit without the RWD.
6th Sense New Mazda6 too fun to be family sedan Story by Budd Stanley, photos courtesy of Mazda Canada
tend to think of the mid-sized sedan market as a bit of a yawner. Rarely do you come across a mid-size four-door that is anything other than dreary A-to-B transportation large enough to fit your three kids when they grow into teenagers. The Accords, Camrys and Malibus of the world are really just one step up from mid-size Crossovers and Minivans. However, a funny thing has been happening the last little while, and that is the introduction of intriguing models into the segment of bore. The Aston... uh ahem... Ford Fusion, while flirty with copyright infringements, does build one of the sexiest sedans on the market that is also available with a six-speed manual when the EcoBoost drivetrain option is checked. Likewise, this Mazda6 is following up the Ford’s splash of excitement with this all-new design.
The power may have been going to the front wheels, but the compact, powerful yet efficient SKYACTIV 2.5-litre inline-four cylinder works so much better with the front wheels than all the competition that lump a great big V6 over the drive wheels and totally destroy any kind of balance or handling symmetry. It’s definitely got a little bit more jump than the rest of the segment, a little more life and soul. Hey, just because you have a family, and a larger car, doesn’t mean fun is now a dirty word, right? At the same time, don’t let the joker mentality of the 6 have you typecasting it. Interior dimensions and cargo volume, while slightly smaller than the competition, are only a fraction behind, offering 419 litres of trunk space. Where the Mazda falls behind is the lack of a V6 option, which despite my preferences, offers more torque and passing power.
It’s a sexy four-door, but will Pictures tell you all you need to know, but it is worth mentioning that it stay that way with the test while I loved the last generation 6, it took very little time for the cutting of time? edge design to become dated. The problem with this generation is, I think it looks even better than the old, and unfortunately, that likely The Mazda6 has forced me to second-guess my idea of what the midsize sedan is and can be. While the 6 may not have the most room or means it will work its way out of style before the end of the year. the most powerful engine, it makes up for these details with poise and As always, I feel pleasantly at home in any Mazda cabin, this 6 even versatility. My only worry is that interior materials as well as exterior more so, with lower and more sporty seating position, great adjust- design may age faster than the forgettable last generation. Regardless, the 6 and I had a powerful connection that easily makes it my pick of the mid-size litter.
The Mazda6 may not have the plushest of materials, however the design and build quality make this one of the best interiors for its class. 20 At The Wheel RPM Oct / Nov 2013
Base Price (MSRP): . ............................................................................ $24,495 Price as Tested: .................................................................................... $32,195 Type: ....................................................................... 5-passenger, 4-door sedan Layout: .................................................................................Front-engine, FWD Engine: ................................................................................................. 2.5L I-4 Power: . .............................................................................184 hp @ 5,700 rpm Torque: ........................................................................... 185 lb-ft @ 3,250 rpm Transmission: . .......................................... 6-speed manual, 6-speed automatic Curb Weight: ....................................................................................... 1,444 kg Fuel Efficiency (L/100km): ...................................................... City 8.1, Hwy 5.3
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FIRST DRIVE - PORSCHE CAYMAN S
Refined, powerful, and efficient
The 2014 Porsche Cayman S Story and photos by Russell Purcell The second-generation Porsche Cayman has arrived. While not immediately apparent, the car is larger in almost every dimension, but special care was taken to ensure that this welcome growth spurt didn’t come with extra weight. In fact, the 2014 Cayman models are lighter than the outgoing cars, as well as more powerful and more fuel-efficient. The end result is a winning product which should prompt a surge in Cayman sales. Hopefully, this spike will not hurt sales of the company’s bread-and-butter model, the 911.
Management (PASM) system and you are all set to reign supreme at your local track day event. The new car is immediately recognizable as a Cayman, as it would have been sinful to start with a clean slate when a car is as visually appealing as this machine. The 2014 edition features significant revisions to both the front and rear fascias - especially with regards to lighting elements, and the rear of the car features a new spoiler design that bisects the sleek new taillights. Our test vehicle rolls on large, 20-inch Carrera S wheels (optional) that help give the car a more aggressive stance, while enlarged side air intakes hint at the car’s performance potential.
With its mid-engine, rear-wheel drive layout, and stupendous PDK transmission, the all-new Porsche Cayman S delivers a driving As a larger individual, I fully appreciate the Cayman’s increase in size. The longer wheelbase helps smooth out the bumps, while experience second to none in this price category. its wider track adds to its functional stability. Much of the car’s The 3.4-litre flat-six engine generates 325 horsepower and 266 66-pound weight reduction was achieved through the additional lb-ft of torque, enough to hustle the lithe, 1,350 kilogram Cayman use of aluminum for the body structure, which also increases to 100 km/h in a spritely 4.9 seconds. While not quite as quick as the torsional rigidity by about 40 percent. The combination of its big sister the 911, the performance of the Cayman S continues to encroach on that of its iconic sibling. The engine features an innovative airflow management system to extend the car’s torque band, and direct injection to make more efficient use of costly premium fuel. The Cayman S is a true performance machine, especially when equipped with the proven dual-clutch, seven-speed PDK transmission which features ultrafast, steering-wheel mounted shift paddles. The mid-engine design allowed the designers to deliver a package that exhibits near-perfect balance (weight distribution is 46/54 ), which translates into very predictable handling characteristics. Of course, a vehicle as speedy and dynamic as the Cayman S requires equally impressive braking power, so the car is fitted with larger ventilated discs front and rear (330 mm / 299 mm respectively), and high performance four-piston aluminum monobloc calipers. Add in the optional Porsche Active Suspension 22 At The Wheel RPM Oct / Nov 2013
f a s t w h e e l s . c a
ROAD TEST - PORSCHE CAYMAN S SPECIFICATIONS Base price (MSRP): .............................................................................. $72,900 Price as tested: . ................................................................................... $95,635 Type: ....................................................................... 2-passenger sports coupe. Layout: .................................................................................. Mid-engine, RWD Engine: ................................................................................. 3.4L DOHC flat-six Power: . .................................................................. 325 hp @ 3,500-4,000 rpm Torque: ................................................................. 266 lb-ft at 1,750-2,500 rpm Transmission: . ........................6-speed manual or 7-speed PDK auto (optional) Brakes: ............................................................................................... Disc/disc Top speed: . ....................................................................................... 281 km/h Acceleration (0-100 km/h): . ...................................................................4.9 sec Fuel efficiency (L/100 km): .................. City 9.9L (29 mpg); Hwy 6.6L (43 mpg)
instrument cluster place all controls and switchgear within easy reach of both hand and eye.
the stiff new chassis and the mild weight reduction enhance the overall driving experience, and bless the car with a level of handling prowess that is usually reserved for much more expensive sports cars.
With the major redesign comes a higher level of standard equipment and a wider array of available options, which should make the Cayman more appealing and allow buyers to better outfit the car to suit their individual tastes and needs.
A host of technologies have been integrated into the car’s design in an effort to both improve fuel efficiency and reduce emissions. Two of the most intriguing are the auto start/stop feature which shuts down the engine when the car comes to a complete stop (much like in a modern hybrid platform), and a coasting function Porsche’s Cayman S version 2.0 is stunwhich utilizes the PDK gearbox. ning to look at, invigoThe look and layout of the interior has been revised to better rating to drive, and reflect the vast improvements Porsche’s designers first initiated priced within reach in their products with the arrival of the stunning Panamera sedan. of the typical midlife Decidedly upmarket, the passenger cabin of the new Cayman is a crisis victim. If you are seeking a sports car with world-class pleasant place to be, especially if you are perched in the driver’s levels of performance, refined appointments, and massive curb seat. From this tidy cockpit, you have surprising visibility fore and appeal, the 2014 Porsche Cayman S should reside high on your aft for a sports car, and the high centre console and compact shopping list.
24 At The Wheel RPM Oct / Nov 2013
ROAD TEST - VOLVO XC60 Beyond the trim, the XC60 does sport new technology such as Cyclist and Pedestrian Detection with Full Auto Brake. As expected, it also scores the new Top Safety Pick+ by IIHS (Insurance Institute for Highway Safety). I’m not sure if it’s my Swedish heritage or what, but despite the disappointing effort, I still love Scandinavian design, and while the exterior may go a little unnoticed amongst the more daring styles of some modern Crossovers trying to etch their own niche in an already overcrowded market, the interior absolutely spoils the occupants. It’s not flashy, it’s not cutting edge and full of exotic materials and technology, but it is an extremely clean, inviting and pleasurable place to spend time; five adults on a road-trip proved a cinch. Infotainment and gauge screens are rather outdated with poor resolution and the dash can be a bit of a maze at first with the sea of buttons, but everything is laid out in a logical manner that is easy to come to terms with. While everyone and their dog are pumping out V6s or turbocharged four-bangers to make the most of both efficiency and power, it’s extremely refreshing to find a company that is staying with the tried-and-true straight-six, in this case, Volvo’s venerable T6 turbo that pumps out a responsive 300 horsepower as well as a great acoustical soundtrack, albeit a quiet one. Fuel efficiency may not be on par with the competition, but I do quite like the response and character A small reminder from Volvo that of the T6.
Volvo’s Last Hope?
the XC60’s still a good vehicle
Story by Budd Stanley, photos courtesy Volvo Canada
t’s been a long time since we’ve taken a look at the Volvo XC60, let alone any Volvo. Things have been silent in the last five years as the company adjusts from Ford control to that of the Chinese holding company, Geely. We Canadians haven’t had much to look forward to, though, as Volvo Canada has only quietly killed off half its models (C30, C70, S40, V50, V70) rather than given us something new. The result of the mass killing and the stagnant updates of what’s left equates to Volvo’s failure to take advantage of an industry that is thriving despite the economic uncertainty in the world. While manufacturers are posting record sales, month after month, Volvo continues to dwindle as sales have been falling year after year, down over 18 percent last year alone. Regardless, there is now something to talk about, and that is a refresh of the company’s most popular crossover, the XC60, that has undergone a few minor changes for the 2014 model year. The new changes include a redesigned hood, grille and headlights, and colour-matching all the black trim. The XC60 also benefits from an interior upgrade with new wood inlays, a new headliner and silk metal frames around the air vents and light controls. All good fluff for press releases, but in reality, it’s a case of slapping some cosmetically pleasing bits on the old car and hoping someone will notice. It’s a good thing the XC60 was such a good vehicle to begin with, because the amount of effort put into the refresh is rather lax considering the lengths the competition are going to, to keep a hold on such a cutthroat market.
On the road, the Volvo is the perfect middle point between BMW handling and Mercedes comfort without all the pomp and circumstance. A solid neutral feel is backed up a comfortable yet firm ride. There is still a bit of a top-heavy feel to the XC60, although the ride height does allow you to get a little further off the beaten path than most. There really is nothing I can find to complain about the Volvo XC60, only that Volvo has let this, as well as all of their lineup, down by ignoring forward progress. Is this simply a slight bump in the road while the company adapts to its new Chinese masters? If you look at fellow Ford escapees Jaguar and Land Rover, which were bought by Tata Motors, only a year before Volvo was sold off; the Indian firm has managed to turn both companies into real contenders. The entire Jaguar lineup is fresh and exciting, the F-Type is the latest wall candy for young boys, while the Evoque has been a revelation for Land Rover, along with the new Range Rover. So what has Geely and Volvo been doing all this time? I just hope Volvo’s faith in its Crossovers is enough to keep Candinavia alive.
SPECIFICATIONS Base Price (MSRP): . ............................................................................ $46,900 Price as Tested: .................................................................................... $53,800 Type: .................................................................5-passenger, 4-door Crossover Layout: ................................................................................ Front-engine, AWD Engine: ........................................................................... Turbocharged 3.0L I-6 Power: . .............................................................................300 hp @ 5,600 rpm Torque: .............................................................. 325 lb-ft @ 2,100 – 4,200 rpm Transmission: . ..................................................................... 6-speed automatic Curb Weight: ....................................................................................... 1,814 kg Fuel Efficiency (L/100km): .................................................... City 11.9, Hwy 8.3
At The Wheel RPM Oct / Nov 2013 25
FIRST DRIVE - SRT VIPER GTS drive ratio. There are really no words to describe how hard this engine pulls through the gears, considering it is naturally aspirated and has no power-adders like a supercharger. So just what has been improved on the new Viper? One major area is ride, handling and capability, aspects of the previous models that were....well, a bit crude. Like most new generations of a car, it begins with a stiffer structure that provides 50 percent more torsional rigidity, the importance of which can’t be overstated. Major updates include the addition of a new aluminum “X” brace under the hood that ties the suspension pickup points to the magnesium cowl, and many areas of the chassis were reworked to take advantage of new materials. The result is an overall weight savings of approximately 45 kilograms.
Blistering Performance The 2013 SRT Viper GTS
Review by Gerry Frechette, photos Courtesy of SRT
Active safety was always something that Viper owners didn’t much care about, it seemed. Anti-lock brakes were the first concession to it, and now, with this new generation, SRT goes all the way with standard safety technologies such as Electronic Stability Control and traction control. No car, especially in less than optimal conditions, needs these more. The other aspect of the Viper that really needed upgrading was the interior, which was spartan and uncomfortable, to say the least. The new car’s interior is....gasp....relatively luxurious, roomy and inviting. We are told that it is the most spacious model in the history of the nameplate.
The seating position in the new Viper is 20 mm lower for more room and enhanced performance-driving ergonomics. Seat travel is extended by Later that year, though, rolling prototypes of a possible new Viper were 90 mm overall, thanks to a more rearward-positioned bulkhead. For the quietly shown at dealer meetings and owner’s club gatherings, and word first time, seat height can be adjusted by up to 40 mm. All that new space came down a year later that the new Viper was confirmed and would be re- is welcomed by the taller driver. introduced late in 2012. High-performance racing seats from Sabelt give both driver and passenger Anyone who thought it improved comfort from increased thigh support and deeper side bolsters. would be a radical depar- Infotainment and connectivity are fully up to modern standards, and the fit ture from the 2010 model and finish would not be out of place in a big SRT sedan. Not all Viper fans was mistaken, as the 2013 will like this, but it will definitely appeal to more potential buyers than the SRT (not Dodge) Viper old approach did. GTS is hard to tell apart from the last one, and un- And that is really what the new Viper is about. The overall concept and der its long hood resides powertrain are little changed, and the performance remains blistering. But another big V10 engine. its refinement, safety and amenities have been brought up to the level most Beyond that, though, much people want to see in an automobile costing $119,995 (or so; see dealer has changed to make the new snake, in the words of SRT President Ralph for confirmation). Gilles, “a more forgiving car to drive and accessible to more people.” Those who have driven any earlier generation of Viper might say that is a good And all that is not something that most fans of the Viper expected to see a few years ago. thing, and hard NOT to accomplish. hen production of the fourth-generation Dodge Viper ended in mid2010, there was much speculation as to whether we would ever see another one. Times weren’t so good at Chrysler after the economic downturn, and when the company was finally taken over by Fiat, one had to wonder if there would be some kind of Alfa Romeo connection to any new ultraperformance car that Chrysler might build, if one was even to be.
The new Viper GTS (a fastback coupe like the GTS has always been) is unmistakably a Viper and differs little dimensionally from the last one, but there are new aerodynamic details in its carbon and aluminum skin, allowing a top speed of....wait for it....206 mph (332 km/h)! The 8.4-litre pushrod V10 powering the Viper to that sort of speed – and zeroto-100 km/h blasts in the three-second range – receives some new pieces that knock about 25 pounds off its weight, and up the power once again, now to 640 horsepower and 600 lb-ft of torque. The engine is backed up by a Tremec six-speed close-ratio transmission, driving through a 3.55 final26 At The Wheel RPM Oct / Nov 2013
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RPM TEST FLEET Nissan Juke Nismo
Price: . ................................................................................................ $28,478 Engine: ........................................................... 1.6L DOHC 16-valve Turbo I4 Trans: ............................................................................................... CVT auto Power: ................................................................................................. 197 hp Torque: .............................................................................................. 184 lb-ft Curb Weight: . ................................................................. 1,437 kg / 3,168 lb Fuel Consumption: (L/100 km – City/Hwy) ..................................... 8.0/6.6 New for 2013: Nissan launched a Nismo version of its Juke crossover for 2013 and upgrades include firmer suspension, a power increase, and bigger tires and wheels. Segment Competitors: Volkswagen GTI, Ford Focus ST, MazdaSpeed3 The Skinny: The Nismo-edition Juke adds a bit more power and some styling upgrades to the existing Juke and Nissan brings it in as a way to introduce the Nismo name to North America and to compete against VW, Ford and Mazda’s sporty hatchbacks. Pros: The added power and stiffer suspension is noticeable and makes for some pretty fun seat time. Cons: We were quite disappointed our test vehicle was equipped with the not so fun CVT transmission instead of the 6-speed manual. The Verdict: We thoroughly enjoyed our time behind the wheel, and believe it or not, the unique look was enough to turn some people’s heads.
VW Jetta Turbo Hybrid
Price: . ....................................................................................................$30,175 Engine: .............................................. 1.4L DOHC 16-valve I4 + electric motor Trans: ............................................................................................ 7-speed auto Power: .....................................................................................................170 hp Torque: . .............................................................................................184 lb-ft Curb Weight: ......................................................................1,505 kg / 3,318 lb Fuel Consumption: (L/100 km – City/Hwy) .......................................4.5/4.2 New for 2013: The Jetta Turbo Hybrid is all-new for 2013 and it combines the fuel efficiency of a regular hybrid with turbocharged engine to create an unhybrid-like driving experience. Segment Competitors: Kia Forte, Nissan Sentra, Honda Civic, Ford Focus, Toyota Corolla, Mazda3, Chevrolet Cruze The Skinny: VW introduces the Jetta Turbo Hybrid into its lineup as a way to break the stigma that hybrid cars are incapable of producing fun, while still
maintaining the fuel efficiency of one. Pros: Definitely has that extra power not found in most other hybrids, and we love that VW put a DSG transmission in this car instead of a CVT that is found on a lot of hybrids. Cons: There is definitely a noticeable delay when switching from gas to electric motors The Verdict: The Jetta Turbo Hybrid introduces some new technology to the hybrid world, and we can only hope that other manufacturers follow suit to spice up the sometimes-dull hybrid market.
Price: ......................................................................................................$54,315 Engine: .............................................................................. 2.0L DOHC Turbo I4 Trans: ........................................................................................... 6-Speed Auto Power: ................................................................................................. 272 hp Torque: ...............................................................................................260 lb-ft Curb Weight: . .....................................................................1,542 kg / 3,400 lb Fuel Consumption: (L/100km – City/Hwy) .........................................9.9/6.3 New for 2013: The ATS is all-new for 2013 and is available with three engine options. It offers Cadillac’s CUE entertainment system, and features many optional advanced safety features. Segment Competitors: Acura TSX, Audi A4, Lexus ES 350, Lincoln MKZ, Infiniti G Sedan, VW Passat The Skinny: Cadillac introduces the ATS to the entry luxury segment to compete against some of its German counterparts like Audi, Mercedes and BMW. The car has an excellent blend of power and fuel efficiency from its 2.0L turbocharged engine. Pros: The car was incredibly fun to drive, and the interior is very good looking and has everything well laid out and easy to use. Cons: The CUE entertainment system often lagged. The Verdict: Cadillac has done a great job of putting the ATS in the conversation of anyone looking to buy a car in the entry luxury segment. 28 At The Wheel RPM Oct / Nov 2013
WINTER TIRE GUIDE how it’ll help you decide what tire you think will be best for you. Let’s start with one of the most common features you’ll hear when referring to winter tires, and that’s “silica.” Silica is a compound added to the rubber used in tires, and it’s added for various reasons, depending on the tire. In most cases, it’s added to increase wet weather performance. In the case of winter tires, though, it’s done to not only enhance wet weather traction, but it mainly allows the rubber in the tire to resist getting hard in the cold. With standard tires, as the temperature drops, the rubber becomes hard. Similar to the way a hockey puck is frozen before a game, to reduce friction. So your all-season tires without silica in them basically act like hockey pucks in the cold and on ice. The silica basically keeps the rubber in your tire flexible, and that flexibility is what gives you traction in the snow, ice and in the cold.
The Nitty Gritty Story by Arch Linsao, photos courtesy of manufacturers got a confession to make. After rambling on and on for years trying to Iand’ve convince you all to buy winter tires, I think I’ve finally ran out of reasons ways to list them. And it wasn’t for lack of trying, but to be honest I think I’ve pretty much said all there is to say about why you should buy them.
This year, I’m going to do things a bit differently. I’m going to take a slightly different, and less pushy, approach. I’m going to give you all the benefit of the doubt and assume you’ve finally decided to take my advice, and now you’re ready to buy some winter tires.
Next up is siping, or sipes. There are so many variations of sipes on tires nowadays. We’ve got 3D sipes, zigzag sipes, multi-angle sipes, swing sipes, canyon sipes, etc. Basically, every tire company has a different way of applying sipe technology into their tires. A sipe in a tire is actually the thin grooves that are carved into the tread blocks of a tire. In winter tires, they’re usually curvy and look like squiggly lines running across each tread block. And basically, what they do is help pull water away from the face of the tread, thus giving the tread face that contacts the ground more grip. As your tire tread contacts the wet surface, the tread blocks will flex and as they do that, the sipes in the tread block open and the water on the surface gets sucked into the sipe. Then as it closes, the water evacuates out the side of the sipes into the larger tread grooves or voids, which channel all the water away from the contact patch of the tire. The sipes increase the number of biting edges that come into contact with the road surface and provide traction for your tires.
That sets us up for our next feature, tread voids or tread grooves. You’ll hear this also referred to as a void-to-tread ratio. This just refers to the larger grooves in the tread of the tire which actually just channel water away from the part of the tire that contacts the ground. Depending on how and where they are carved into the tire, they’ll either evacuate the water out the side of the tires (lateral grooves), or behind the tire as it’s rolling (longitudinal grooves). At first glance, it really just dictates what the tire looks like, but it’s not that simple. These grooves are usually computerOkay, so you start searching for tires and start reading through pages and designed and engineered to evacuate water a certain way in order to help pages of reviews, ratings, charts and photos. Then you get to the technical the tire perform at its best when wet. specifications and you are all of a sudden overwhelmed with technical tire jargon that makes absolutely no sense. Well, that’s what I’m going to do, Still on the topic of tread design, many winter tires will also feature a distinct I’m going to try to make sense of it all for you. Well most of it, at least. centre rib. This is the tread block that runs continuously around the centre of the tire. The reason this is done on many winter tires is to enhance While all the tire manufacturers out there try to keep an edge on their stability. Generally speaking, winter tires are thought to be much “softer” competition by developing different and unique attributes for their tires to than regular tires due to the flexibility in the tread that the silica compound perform better than others, a lot of this development and innovation all provides. With more flexibility in the tread, there’s more tread squirm, which revolves around some key elements that all of the winter tires out there is movement in the tread blocks. Without a design feature such as a centre feature. Basically, because they’re proven to work. All tires have them, rib to add lateral stability and enhance the handling characteristics of many it’s just that each manufacturer will develop and feature them a bit differ- winter tires, you’d find the tires would wander and squirm at higher speeds ently than the next. Just like shoes, for example. They all have the same or when cornering due to the movement in the tread blocks. So the centre components and materials, just laid out a bit differently. My regular readers rib is there to counteract the side effects of a softer and more flexible silica will see what I did there. compound based tread. Another feature that serves a similar purpose is a reinforced shoulder tread block (the outer-most tread block on the outer Now I could sit here and go through every single variation of every single side of the tire that meets the sidewall) or a reinforced sidewall. feature of every single tire, but really I’d take up the whole issue of the magazine and I’m sure the editor wouldn’t be overly impressed. So I’m So that’s just a few of the many different features that make winter tires, going to break it down and keep with the common denominators, the core winter tires. As mentioned, there are so many more specific features that features that make winter tires actually winter tires. And from there, you’ll each tire company brings to the table, and so many more variations of be able to have more of an understanding of how each tire company is each feature that they use to make their tire stand out amongst the rest. trying to innovate and make each feature their own. Thus, helping you I’d love to list them all but really, as long as you understand some of the understand a bit more what you’re buying, as well as why you’re buying more commonly used features, you’ll be able to decipher the rest of the it. So here it is, let’s get down to the “nitty gritty.” tire jargon that comes your way on your quest to find your winter tires. So you’ve sat down at your computer, coffee and a snack to your left (at least that’s how I roll), and now you’re ready to go. We all know that nowadays, the first place we look is online to try to do our homework and narrow down all the choices. Wait, scrap that... online is the second place we look because we all know that the first place we look is in this magazine and at this article in particular, right? Right! Carrying on.
You’ll easily be able to look up the following features and find dictionary definitions for them....sure. But will that really help you in figuring out why it makes a winter tire do what it does? It may or may not. What I’ll do is give it to you in a way that relates each feature to tires specifically, and that’s 30 At The Wheel RPM Oct / Nov 2013
And as always, talk to your tire expert if you’re still having trouble choosing between tire A and tire B. They’ll be able to help you decide based on what features of each tire will be best suited to you, your driving and your vehicle.
WINTER TIRE GUIDE Featured: Winter Slalom KSi Features & Benefits: State-of-the-art looks and the ability to take you where you want to go throughout the winter make the BFGoodrich® Winter Slalom® KSI Key Snow & Ice the RIGHT tire for all types of cold weather adventures. The KSI features winter regenerating compounds, which are micro-pores that provide grip mechanism for continued traction on snow and ice. The optimized sipe configuration offers better block stability for improved handling and wear, plus enhanced cornering and braking on snow, ice, slush, wet and dry roads. More hydroplaning resistance and deep snow traction comes from full lateral grooves and increased tread voids. BFG’s Etec System, or equal tension containment system, is available on most sizes which basically provides a consistent footprint and maximum tread contact under any speed, giving you better control on the road no matter what the weather.
Featured: Blizzak LM-32 Features & Benefits: Blizzak winter tires are engineered to do more than just bite through packed snow and ice, they improve performance in cold temperatures, too. With unique polymers and tread pattern elements that help provide extra grip and control as temperatures approach freezing, the versatile Blizzak LM-32 is designed to move luxury vehicles through winter’s demanding conditions, maintain performance on wet, dry, icy and snowy roads, and power through winter on your terms. The new LM-32 features a new top compound for confident grip and braking, a next-generation high-sipe density tread pattern to improve snow and ice traction by increasing the number of biting edges, large shoulder blocks for precision cornering and handling and optimized construction for increased fuel efficiency. Featured: ExtremeWinterContact
Features & Benefits: Performing superbly on dry and wet pavement in cold temperatures, the ExtremeWinterContact is built to conquer the road with confidence - even in the coldest winter weathers. Its compact outside tread with elevated lateral grooves and inclined longitudinal grooves provides improved dry handling and the high sipe density and highly flexible compound allow for swift removal of water in wet conditions and reduced braking distances in snow and ice. Maximum void and grip edges in the centre contact patch with traction ridges within the grooves allow for excellent traction and braking in the snow. Featured: WinterMaxx
Features & Benefits: Dunlop winter tires feature specialized tread compounds and advanced tread designs that help provide superior traction on ice, slush and snow. The Maxx-Sharp Edge with Miura-Ori Sipes provides higher blade density to help prevent tread block distortion and increase tread-to-ice contact, while the Nano-fit rubber combines flexibility and rigidity to help rubber tread adhere to the ice surface. These features, along with its asymmetric tread and wide grooves and lugs, provide improved traction in snow, wet and dry, as well as enhanced handling in all conditions. Featured: Espia EPZ Features & Benefits: The Espia EPZ provides superb traction even in the harshest weather conditions. Specially designed canyon sipes and a micro-glass fibre rubber compound allow the EPZ to “claw” the roughness of ice and stubbornness of snow in a non-studded alternative to the traditional winter tire. With sizes ranging from 13-inch to 17-inch, the EPZ covers many of today’s popular OE fitments. The Espia EPZ is the perfect choice capable of conquering mother nature at her worst on a daily basis. It features canyon sipes technology to help create additional biting edges which enhance snow and ice traction, circumferential grooves to maximize hydroplaning resistance, shoulder wave sipes to provide a stronger resistance to wandering or “tread squirm,” and a dual-purpose tread pattern that is able to handle both deep snow and compact ice with superior traction Featured: Winterforce
Features & Benefits: The Firestone Winterforce is “siped and studdable” for good winter performance. Its directional, computer-modelled tread design helps to deliver confident snow, wet and ice traction. The Firestone Winterforce is designed to deliver a quiet and comfortable ride to get you to your destination regardless of the weather conditions. Its directional tread pattern optimizes wet and dry performance and its high-sipe density three-dimensional tread pattern makes for confident snow, ice and wet traction. Also, being pinned for standard studs provides additional traction potential for severe conditions. At The Wheel RPM Oct / Nov 2013 31
WINTER TIRE GUIDE Featured: Altimax Arctic Features & Benefits: The Altimax Arctic has unique grooves and sipes, combined with a modern compound, offering high performance at low temperatures. Its innovative Quad-Tech Smart Tire Technology provides improved handling and exceptional traction on snow and ice. It also features a multi-angle sipe system with 270 degrees of sipes and biting edges that maximizes traction in any direction of travel. The directional tread pattern with its centre stability rib provides enhanced straight-line stability and water evacuation, while the Reactive Contour Technology reacts to different road conditions to maintain optimum contact with the road surfaces. And of course, its silica tread composite allows for cold-weather flexibility for increased snow and ice performance. Featured: Nord*Frost 100
Features & Benefits: This brand-new Nord*Frost 100 is an improvement on the previous Nord*Frost 5 offered by Gislaved, featuring optimized ice traction and braking and improved snow traction as a result of its multi-angle sipes and aggressive large-void directional tread pattern. The solid centre rib allows for high steering response and optimized handling on dry roads. All of this, and the tire features a smooth and quiet ride along with higher mileage ratings and a low rolling resistance. Featured: Ultra Grip Ice WRT
Features & Benefits: The Ultra Grip Ice WRT stops shorter on ice versus its leading competitors, thanks to a specialized ice tread compound that offers enhanced traction on snow and ice-covered roads from season to season, as well as its two-dimensional blades in the centre zone of the tire that provide increased stopping and starting power on ice and snow. Add to that, the 3D TredLock technology blades in the shoulder that provide wet and winter traction by locking together for confident grip in the corners, and a directional tread pattern that channels away water and slush. Featured: I*Pike RS W419 Features & Benefits: The new I*Pike RS from Hankook is the next generation of studdable winter tire, packed with advanced technologies to enhance performance and drivability. Some key design features include 3D grooves and sipes which offer efficient water evacuation and maximum braking and handling, innovative spuit holes which perform by absorbing and evacuating water from the tire’s contact patch, and an aggressive 2-in1 tread block design to provide increased snow traction. Hankook has also optimized the stud pin arrangement used in the design of this tire to include 16 stud rows, ensuring effective braking and handling on icy surfaces. A two-layered “Snow Tread Design” tread structure helps to secure the pins. And by placing the stud rows closer to the tire’s centre compared to conventional studdable tires, they are able to offer superior ice grip. Featured: Solus Vier KH21
Features & Benefits: The Solus Vier KH21 is now branded as a true all-weather tire, snowflake rated, for the harmony of driving in any weather condition. The KH21 features a directional pattern for outstanding wet performance, optimal performance in all weather conditions, multiple sipes for snow performance, and wide lateral grooves for enhanced hydroplaning resistance. Featured: Pilot Alpin PA4
Features & Benefits: The Michelin Pilot Alpin PA4 tires provide safe winter driving year after year, with controlled power. It offers exceptional control in snow and ice and improve braking distance from its exclusive tread design, StabiliGrip, and 3-D sipe technology. Improved braking distance is achieved using a formula of full-silica-based rubber compound, Helio Compound+ which allows the tire to remain flexible in low temperatures for better winter performance, stopping over 5% shorter on snow, ice and wet roads. The Pilot Alpin PA4 is also certified by ultra-high performance vehicle manufacturers, such as Porsche. 32 At The Wheel RPM Oct / Nov 2013
WINTER TIRE GUIDE Featured: NT-SN2
Features & Benefits: Nitto’s latest winter tire, the NT-SN2, uses an advanced silica compound that evacuates water and resists hardening at lower temperatures which helps to maintain excellent traction in wet, ice, and slush situations. The tread design provides better handling on dry and wet roads as well as more grip on ice and snow-covered roads. The continuous centre rib and 3D multiwave sipes provide added stability and traction under braking and acceleration. The computer-designed tread and special compound allow the tire to effectively bite into ice and snow for increased driving confidence.
Featured: Winter Sottozero Serie II
Features & Benefits: For demanding drivers, the Winter Sottozero™ Serie II guarantees excellent performance on dry and wet roads, and in the presence of snow. In temperatures below 7C, it counters aquaplaning more effectively than an all-season or summer tire. The asymmetrical tread pattern is divided into two distinct elements: the inner area expels water effectively, while the external area ensures high levels of grip on snow with its more rigid and spaced blocks. These features on the W270 version are enhanced by the exclusive patented twin-compound solution. Characterized by low rolling resistance, the Winter Sottozero™ Serie II also provides low noise levels, enhancing comfort in the cabin. It also features a new temperature-dynamic compound and uses patented IBS technology for sipe construction, which all equates to enhanced handling and grip in both wet and dry conditions, and increased tire rigidity and contact patch even on irregular surfaces. Featured: Observe GSi-5
Features & Benefits: The Toyo Observe GSi5 winter passenger tire is the right tire for drivers looking for a safe and dependable winter drive. With a complete size range for passenger, light truck, SUV, CUV or van applications, the GSi5 offers exceptional traction and safety during our tough Canadian winters. Whether it’s snow, slush, ice or just simply slippery roads, the Observe GSi5 has the technology to handle all our winter conditions. With its unidirectional tread pattern, large tread blocks with saw-toothed edges, wide lateral grooves and arrow lift technologies, the GSi5 offers unparalleled snow, ice and wet weather traction. Its advanced siping and increased levels of silica and improved silica dispersion in the compound, along with its continuous centre rib with swing sipe, aid in providing maximum grip whether cornering, accelerating or braking.
Featured: Tiger Paw Ice & Snow II
Features & Benefits: The recently redesigned Uniroyal Tiger Paw Ice & Snow II features a highly-siped tread surface, deep tread grooves and a winter-adapted tread compound which translates to dependable traction on ice, snow, slush and wet road conditions. Increased cold weather grip is a result of a winter polymer compound that maintains molecular adhesion and tread flexibility at low temperatures. Durashield Construction and a computer-optimized variable pitch tread aid in durability and reduced road noise. For enhanced ice traction, the tire is pinned for studs.
Features & Benefits: A performance winter tire, the W.drive provides a combination of reliable driving stability and high-speed capability in dry conditions with better grip and control in wet, cold and snow situations. Polyhedral 3-D sipes lock together under pressure, which maintains stiffer tread blocks, providing increased handling and performance while still allowing for a softer compound and multiple biting edges for increased traction. The W.drive evacuates snow, slush and water, putting more rubber in contact with the road, while providing gripping handling in demanding driving situations with enough backbone to master the pavement in the corners, and the flexibility you need when fall turns to winter. The result is the consistent performance capability you demand in a tire that stays on track when the mercury drops. 34 At The Wheel RPM Oct / Nov 2013
THE TRUCK GUY be mounted to a steel surface with its magnetic base. You can angle this camera down so you can view your trailer hitch and it will help when backing up to your trailer. The cost of this unit is $382. Another product, made by Mobile Awareness, is a camera with LED lights and a speaker that can transmit sounds to the monitor so you can hear as well as see. The cost of this unit including monitor is $640.00 GPS navigation systems are now seen in many new vehicles and people with older models are looking to the aftermarket for this upgrade. Delphi offers a few different models including the NAV300 that features Bluetooth connectivity with an integrated microphone allowing users to answer calls and access contacts via your phone’s voice commands, for $495.00.
Backup Cameras Story by Ian Harwood ackup cameras and proximity sensors are not new to the autoB motive industry; at a time, they were only available as a factory option, mainly in high-end vehicles, crossovers and SUVs. Now we find them on just about every new vehicle.
For myself, I still look over my shoulder, but they definitely make life easier when you can see everything; couple that with a backup sensor, and it is almost foolproof. Until the car manufacturers decided to one-up each other, that is. Now, you have side cameras, front cameras, and backup cameras with distorted shapes and lines that look like you’re trying to land a plane, and if it’s a rainy night, forget it. It would be like trying to look through a screen window in a 300 year-old cabin. Why make things so complicated? Protect the lens from rain and give them some LED lights to illuminate the area.
With portable media players all the rage, and a big distraction, for many drivers, making them easier to manage behind the wheel is a growing trend and gives aftermarket suppliers the opportunity to provide customers with a combination of safety and convenience. The invention of the iPod began one of the biggest changes ever in vehicle entertainment, since people could now take their entire music collections along with them in a pocket-size device. Automakers were quick to capitalize on the iPod craze by adding full control of the device to make it more convenient and safe to use. Smart phones can be plugged directly into the auxiliary jack, and depending on the vehicle, you can use the steering wheel controls to operate the device. Ford has a voice-activated Sync program that lets you operate these devices with a voice command. Many other manufacturers have followed suit and have on-board media servers that can transfer music from your device and store it on the internal hard drive.
For anyone who owns an older vehicle or even a pickup that does Now, if I could only have it block out my teenager’s music, I wouldn’t not come with this technology, the opportunity is now available. Swift have to listen to a rapper swearing at me as I am driving down the Hitch is a wireless camera system with built-in night vision that can highway.
At The Wheel RPM Oct / Nov 2013 35
2013 Pagani Huayra Story and photos by Giancarlo Pawelec
n 1992, Argentinian-born Horacio Pagani founded the Italian sports car company Pagani Automobili S.p.A., after spending a number of years managing Lamborghini’s composites division and the restyling of some notable machines. Fast-forward a few years and Pagani’s dream of creating the ultimate supercar (at the time named the Fangio F1 in honour of his friend and Formula One legend Juan Manuel Fangio) came true. Introduced at the Geneva Motor Show in 1999, Pagani unveiled a car unlike any other for its time – the Zonda C12. This radically designed $500,000 USD hypercar boasted a 6.0-litre AMG V12 engine putting out 389 bhp and mated to a 5-speed manual gearbox. Soon after its debut, the Zonda received some changes, including upgraded aero components, gauge cluster, exhaust system, and a new 7.0-litre AMG engine. Fast forward through eight different versions until its final production in 2011 with the “764 Passion”. Proving that a supercar dream could come true, Horacio Pagani has done the unthinkable with the Zonda and ruffled feathers through the process. 36 Speed & Sound RPM Oct / Nov 2013
The cockpit is sheer beauty with incredible craftsmanship and a fusion of art and technology. Aluminum accessories (making it feel like a spaceship) are mixed with a stunning glossy carbon fibre finish. The centre console packs a touch screen display that provides the navigation, Bluetooth connectivity, and back-up camera view. The seating arrangement is a magnificent set of race buckets finished in matching red leather, which is an upgrade option well worth its price. The attention to detail throughout the Huayra’s interior is truly incredible, making it seem more of automotive art rather than the insanely fast race car that it is. Tucked just behind the red bucket seats is an upgraded audio system encased in none other than carbon fibre. The upgrade consists of Sonus Faber speakers and amplifier that deliver 1,200 watts of power output in the confined Pagani cabin and the essential weight savings for a race car – it is a Pagani after all. The new audio triples the performance of the standard option and provides a rich audiophile experience unlike any other supercar of its kind. With the benchmark set high, the next generation of Pagani had to be leaps and bounds better than the first one, which put the boutique Italian supercar maker on the map. After much speculation from journalists and enthusiasts worldwide, news of the successor came with a debut set for February 2012 in Geneva. The name would be that of “Huayra” after the Incan wind god Huayra-tata, who is said to live in the high Andes Mountains. Despite the difficult pronunciation, this new hypercar became the new star by which other makers followed. Shortly after its unveiling, Top Gear Magazine named the Huayra as “The Hypercar of the Year 2012” and that speaks volumes as the replacement to the already legendary Zonda.
Just as would a toy car, the Huayra opens up revealing all its glory. Under the wind tunnel-tested and styled body are the bare essentials, a carbon-titanium monocoque chassis and front and rear chromemoly subframes. The body is styled for maximum downforce and air is directed
With its gull-wings opened as if it wanted to embrace thee, this new Huayra sat in the showroom of Pfaff Tuning in Vaughan, Ontario. According to Horst Bulau of Pfaff, this exposed carbon beauty is said to be the only one in North America at present and on a demo tour across the country. Priced at $1.8-million CAD, this hypercar is not your average Pagani, as it boasts upgraded options from the shopping list of offerings at the San Cesario sul Panaro factory near Modena, Italy. The most obvious of which is the exposed carbon fibre finish on the body, unlike the other painted varieties.
Speed & Sound RPM Oct / Nov 2013
Huayra rolls on a set of off-size forged bespoke wheels sized at 19-inches front and 20-inches at the back. Rubber of choice is Pirelli P Zero tires in 255/35-19 and massive 335/30-20. Allowing this hypercar to stop quick enough and probably able to tilt the world’s axis are a set of massive 15-inch Brembo carbon ceramic brakes with red calipers. The rear of the Pagani is, as expected, dominated by the quad titanium exhaust cannons sticking out, carbon diffuser, and the twin independent flaps for cornering / braking. An added option to this particular carbon-clad monster is that of a rear-view camera located above the centre brake light. From the moment one’s eyes are laid on the Zonda’s successor, it is to the brakes and radiators. On either side behind the front wheels are clear that the heritage still exists despite the brand’s youthful age. With air outlets for added downforce similar to the underbody channels. a mix of Argentinian passion, Italian craftsmanship, and German power, this is one supercar that will always remain an icon to gearheads and In profile view, this new Pagani is something to behold, with perfect gentleman aficionados. proportions and an appearance that screams ‘all business.’ Under the rear hatch is a suspension system suited to a Formula One car. Mated to the chromemoly subframes are aluminum double-A arm suspension from the Zonda R and fully adjustable Ohlins coilovers. Letting the hot exhaust gases out from the AMG engine is a gorgeous and extremely light blue-purple titanium exhaust system that weighs in at only 20 pounds and sounds incredible. The sight alone of all these space-age parts is an engineer’s and enthusiast’s wet dream alike! The demon inside this carbon creation is a hand built AMG M158 6.0-litre V12 engine that packs two small turbochargers good for 700 horsepower and 738 lb-ft of torque. When untapped, the Huayra boasts a 0-60 mph time of three seconds and a top speed of 230 mph, possible in part to a seven-speed transverse-mounted sequential gearbox built by Xtrac. Allowing for 700 raw horsepower to be unleashed, the
38 Speed & Sound RPM Oct / Nov 2013
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PLUGGED IN of the vehicle. Companies like Directed, Compustar, Fortin, iDataLink and more spend thousands of hours each year on integration with the latest vehicles to hit the market so that you can add the features you want. Much of this is transparent to consumers, but serves to simply allow your installer do get the job done reliably.
Looking for amazing range and all the features you could want from a Convenience system? The Compustar Pro 2W901SS includes a remote with an LCD display that features up to 5,000 feet of range. The LCD display makes it easy to see if your vehicle is locked, running or, if the alarm goes off, what sensor triggered it.
Security and Convenience Story by Dave MacKinnon, photos by manufacturers
ver the past few years, we have taking time in the fall to look at some of the latest offerings in terms of security and convenience features. Most folks think of the industry in two ways – remote starts and car alarms. Those are quite accurate in terms of wrapping things up in a neat and tidy label, but in actuality, the industry is far more complex. I think a better title would by ‘automotive convenience.’ Why? There is so much more to offer – cellular phone integration, power window and sunroof control, trunk release, tilt/motion sensors, rear window defroster activation, heated seat control and much more. All of these features can integrate amongst themselves to give you the feature set you want.
Over the past few decades, there have been cars that were simply too difficult to work on reliably. This included Mercedes-Benz and BMW. In recent years, with the help of more powerful computer processing and a LOT of hard work, many of these vehicles are now able to be remote started, often with the use of the factory key fob. Different companies take slightly different approaches, but the most common method is known as the “3x Lock” procedure. Press the lock button on your factory remote three times within a short period of time, and the car starts. Simple! Directed Electronics (known for their its brands Viper, Clifford, Python and more) has introduced a product called PKE or Passive Keyless Entry. Have you ever just wanted to walk up to your car and have it unlock, then when you get to your destination, close the doors and walk away, have it lock again. That’s exactly what PKE does. You don’t need to touch anything. Just keep the PKE key fob in your pocket or purse and enjoy. The actual act of purchasing a convenience system can be simplified if you have done a bit of homework in advance. Decide if you want a remote start system, security system or both. Do you want control over the power door locks and trunk release? If you don’t have those, would you like that added to your vehicle? If available for your vehicle, you may have the option of having the rear window defroster turned on if it’s below a predetermined temperature, and in some cars, you can activate seat position presets. Sliding door control is available for many mini-vans, as is rear hatch control on some SUVs with motorized hatches. Do you have a smart-phone? Apple, Android and some Blackberry devices can be integrated with your vehicle to allow you to lock, unlock, start, pop the trunk and even show you the location of your vehicle on a map.
Before I let you go for another year, we should talk about installation and pricing. Having worked in the mobile electronics industry for 28 years, I have seen a lot of good work, and a lot of very bad. Your car is a huge investment. In many cases, it’s the second biggest only to your home. You should shop for a convenience system the same way you would shop for a photographer or a contractor to do work on your house. Ask The market is evolving quickly as vehicles have adopted more and for references. Ask to see their work. Ask to see the installation bay. more computerized communication amongst the internal components The best installation is the one that looks like it never happened.
Use your Android or iPhone to take full control over your car’s convenience features from anywhere on the planet you have a cellular data connection. You can lock, unlock, remote start, pop the trunk or locate your vehicle on a map and see if it’s moving. Directed’s SmartStart GPS systems can work with an aftermarket convenience system or on its own for vehicle locating and door lock control. 40 Speed & Sound RPM Oct / Nov 2013
Never touch a button again to lock and unlock your car. With Directed’s PKE system, it’s all completely automatic. The PKE system is compatible with security and remote start systems, or may be installed as a stand-alone system for door lock control.
Want to know whatâ€™s going on with your vehicle without spending a lot on a fancy convenience system? The Compustar Pro 2WG9SP remote start and convenience system includes a pair of remote controls that offer two-way communication with your vehicle. LEDâ€™s let you know the status of your vehicle - when it arms, disarms, starts or when the alarm goes off.
Do you have a BMW, Mini or Mercedes-Benz? The new iDataStart systems allow your installer to seamlessly and safely integrate with your vehicle and tell it to remote start. You can use your factory remote and start the car by pressing the lock button three times, or have the system connected to a security system for added protection.
The S3 from Solace features an LCD remote with a rechargeable battery and two-way communication up to 4,000 feet from your vehicle. The Eco Run system pays attention to the temperature of your vehicle and can be programmed to comply with anti-idling bylaws so that your car is remote started and warmed up efficiently and legally.
While typically transparent to consumers, the next generation Fortin EVO-ALL interface module now includes three CAN Bus controllers, on-board relays, digital and analog inputs and much more. Devices like this allow your installer to enable more features on more vehicles with excellent reliability and increased efficiency.
42 Speed & Sound RPM Oct / Nov 2013
Death of the Manual Are Flappy Paddles taking fun out of driving?
Story by Budd Stanley, photos courtesy of GM, Porsche and Mercedes-Benz
turned their backs on the manual. However, while Lincolns and Buicks are for fat, balding old men and Ferraris and Lamborghinis are driven by poseurs with shirts that are two sizes too small and real man doesn’t have to wear a beard. A real man doesn’t sunglasses that went out of style in 1988, what hurts the most is have to flex 18-inch pipes. A real man does not have to wear a that the last of the true driver’s performance cars, the Porsche 911 skintight shirt and shout out an A-type personality. However, real GT3, can not be bought with a manual gearbox. men drive vehicles with manual gearboxes. I am of the school that thinks a real man, a man’s man, is one who doesn’t brag about how Which brings us to one the most debated issues around shop water many other men he’s beaten, but someone who contains certain tanks across the land; is a dual-clutch paddle-shifted transmission vital characteristics. Those being respect, responsibility, honour, really a manual? Many of my colleagues argue that these transmistradition, pride, charity and most importantly, the ability to time sions are shifted when the driver clicks the paddle and don’t just the speed of the engine to the speed of the tires, push a clutch have one clutch, but two, making them proper manuals. Well yes, and sync the proper gear harmoniously within its other gears to these transmissions do have clutches, but so do air conditioning compressors and centre differentials. In my opinion, just because provide propulsion. these transmissions have clutches, does not make them manuals, Well, men, we have an issue. If you are a true auto enthusiast, there since the clutch, and the shift actuation for that mater, is not actuis a rather disturbing trend that is infecting the entire auto industry. ated by the driver, rather by a computer chip. My strong opinion The slow killing off of the manual gearbox, replaced by automatic is, if there is no third pedal, you’re driving an automatic. transmissions disguising themselves as manuals with flappypaddle shifting. And I’m So what’s my gripe, you may be asking? Why am I hating on the not just talking about the marvels of modern technology? Don’t I know that paddle-shifted Buicks and Lincolns of cars are much faster than manual shift alternatives? Real men the world; proper sports drive the fastest, most technically advanced cars available. No! cars, cars built for driv- Real men drove cars without power steering or brakes, didn’t have ing enjoyment, are los- seatbelts and not only had a manual gearbox, but a gearbox without ing their gearboxes as synchromesh gears. Real men double-clutched to upshift and healwell. Lamborghini’s only toed to downshift. And the bravest men of all raced these cars, with manual resides in a spe- the distinct likelihood that they would be killed doing so. My gripe cial edition of the Gal- is that along with the manual gearbox, the true drivers cars are lardo. Lexus and Infiniti slowly being killed off in the name of bench racing numbers. Yes, don’t even understand paddle-shifted cars are faster than those with an archaic manual Many manufacturers like Ferrari don’t the term “manual,” while shift, but sense of speed, communication with the car and the joy even produce a manual gearbox Ferrari, of all manufac- of the machine are dulled and rendered obsolete for the sake of anymore, despite calling themselves builders of enthusiast machines. turers, has long-since beating the competition’s latest lap time on the Nurburgring.
Speed & Sound RPM Oct / Nov 2013
PERFORMANCE The sight of a third pedal is rapidly becoming extinct.
A very interesting thing happened to me a little while ago. The Porsche Cayman S is one of my all-time favourite cars, so when the new redesigned Cayman S came to town earlier this year, I jumped on it like a fat kid on a Smarty. I am a lover of small midengine sports coupes and have owned three Toyota MR2s. My latest, one you will get to know well in the coming issues, I picked up for a meagre $300, yet the joy that car has brought me is immeasurable. The problem was, moving from my $300 MR2 to the $80,000-plus Cayman S did not produce the results I had expected. Yes the PDK-equipped Cayman was immensely capable, and on a track, would annihilate my little MR2. However, to drive on the street, the capabilities of the car were so far away that it literally made this car boring to drive. The only place I could really get my jollies was to find the twistiest mountain road and drive it near double the speed limit.
more fun I would be having in the MR2. With the more strippeddown old cars, you are more intimately connected to the machine in a way that just is not possible today. You feel through the seat what the chassis is doing, you feel through the steering wheels what the front tires are doing. More importantly, you have complete control over the machine through the operation of a gearbox, much like the reins of a horse. It is the pure and utter joy that has been castrated from the modern automobile. There is now interference in communication between man and machine to the point the two are now talking totally different languages. However, I am part of a breed that is slowly dying out, as this is the reason why manufacturers are building fewer manual cars. People donâ€™t go for Sunday drives anymore, and those who call themselves driving enthusiasts want the latest in modern technology to make up for driving skill to beat the other guy with just as expensive of a machine. True drivers, real men, our cars will not be available in dealership showrooms anymore, but in the classifieds. Grab them while you still can, that Porsche 964, BMW E46 M3, Lotus Elise, Mazda RX-8, Corvette Z06 or even an old MR2, because soon, fun cars with three pedals are going to be collectors items. The way of the future, old manual shift cars will soon be considered collectible.
The point of the story is that even with a highly-tuned chassis, massive brakes and a whopping 325-horsepower flat-six screaming an intoxicating tone, all I could think of while driving it was how much
In an effort to stay on performance terms with other supercar competition, Porsche could not allow its track day flagship to be handicapped with a manual shift, so the GT3 no longer comes with that option. 44 Speed & Sound RPM Oct / Nov 2013
Cheetah Looking back at Turbine-powered concepts
George Pappas’ 1967 Pontiac Beaumont Cheetah SD 427 Story and photos by Cam Hutchins
strategy. They immediately loaned a Cheetah to a major car club, Don Powell did the racing at the local drag strip for the 1966 season, and it won f all the great cars produced in the 1960s, the Muscle Car reigned many trophies. supreme, and the dealer-built Super Muscle Cars continue to capture the Baby Boomers attention like no other. Modern Camaros with Nickey In a further effort to sway potential customers into purchasing a performanceperformance parts have probably already outsold all Nickey products of the modified Beaumont, they built and displayed a Cheetah demo car each ‘60s. Other dealers were in on it as well, such as Yenko, Baldwin-Motion and year. They knew that one test drive in this tire-burner might be all that was needed to seal the deal with any customer seeking high-performance and a lesser-known West Vancouver dealership, Conroy Pontiac. a competitively sporty look. Conroy Pontiac’s Mike Carmichael invented and produced the Beaumont Cheetah from 1965 to 1969, based on a Canadian Pontiac Beaumont. The “base level” 1966 Cheetah package included the L34 396 engine, MThe Beaumont was based on the Chevelle body with unique front grille, 20 four-speed (no automatics available), 12-bolt positraction 3.31 rear end taillights, body side louvres and a GTO dash. The big-block ‘67 and ‘68 SD Beaumonts and Cheetahs used the Chevelle Big Block hoods.
Chevelles and Chevy II’s were available from Chevrolet in Canada but the infamous Pontiac GTO was not built in Canada until 1969. Tariffs and other importing problems made some America-only cars expensive to bring into Canada. Another curious thing with the Canadian Pontiacs is that they all featured Chevy drivelines, including engines and chassis, until the late ‘60s. Wanting to cash in on the craze for an intermediate Muscle Car, as the GTO was too expensive to compete with the Big Block Chevelle (due to tariffs), Conroy Pontiac started offering the Beaumont Cheetah starting in 1965, with the small-block and four-speed and many upgrades; performance and cosmetic would be price effective. With the introduction of the 396-360 hp engine in 1966, Conroy based the Cheetah on the Beaumont SD 396. In order to advertise the Cheetah package, Conroy employed the famous, “race on Sunday... sell on Monday” 46 Rods & Classics RPM Oct / Nov 2013
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the last 1966 Cheetah built and had a 427, and the fellow had bought it new....but the ‘66s did not come with the big-block hood, so it was not the right car for George. The car was in Surrey and was going for $5,000 in 1988, but was in pieces. The next Cheetah he saw was a 1967 Granada Gold car on Vancouver Island, sitting under a tree. The owner at the time had bought it from a fellow who had bought the car when it was a couple of years old. One of those “give me the first right to buy it back if you sell it” deals ensured George did not get this car, but it has since been restored.
and heavy-duty metallic brakes. The characteristic look of the car included side striping, a pair of retrofitted British bullet-style racing mirrors, distinctive “Cheetah by Conroy Pontiac” medallions and special Buick five-spoke mag wheels. Initially, Cheetahs were made in pale yellow with black vinyl roofs (imitating the look of the world’s fastest land animal) but other colours were wanted and by 1967, green became the predominate colour of choice.
The next one came along when buying big block engines, and he found a 427 block that was stamped Cheetah on the block. After many questions over a couple of years, it led to a Verdi Green Sport Deluxe Beaumont Cheetah that had been touched up in the ‘80s. It took six or seven more years for the stars to align and George got to buy the green 1967 Cheetah 427. The big plus was he already had the correct motor. The car had been very well looked after but the underside had never been cleaned, so a thorough detailing took place under the car, including all new bushings and so on. George’s Verde Green car had to have some minor re-sprays to some parts of the body but was a very original car after he got the correct motor back in it. The car came with a 4.10 posi, headers, Hurst shifter, American mags, heavy-duty brakes, racing clutch and safety bell housing. Sport Deluxe cars all came with redline tires and this car has original bias ply tires.
Most significantly, speed-hungry customers were offered a jump up in horsepower which included anything from installation of headers, a camshaft, intake or carburetor swap (including two four-barrels), to a complete engine replacement, all the way up to the scorching 427/450hp L72 motor! Purchasers could further opt for a Hurst shifter, racing clutch, safety bell housing, gears up to 4.88, and American Racing wheels. Most of the ‘66 and ‘67 cars were highly-optioned from the factory, but a late batch of ‘67s were built as Sport Deluxe models with minimum factory options, including bench seats in order to keep the price down. Produced for only five years, its numbers are estimated at around 50 in total (some in 1965, 12 in 1966, 20 in 1967 and the remainder in 1968 and 1969, with the ‘65 and the ‘69 versions only being small blocks). Very few survive today, and George Pappas of Vancouver B.C. owns probably the finest example of these Canadian supercars known to exist. While these cars were being raced around the local streets and the track, George, just a young boy from Vancouver, got to go to the dealership with his Dad, who had just bought a new 1968 Beaumont. Having an eye for the cars just like his Dad’s he saw his first Cheetah at around aged nine. It was a 1966 396 model owned by a guy who worked at an auto shop near George’s house. The second Cheetah he came across was a fellow in the neighbourhood who was buying and selling cars, and he owned a 1967 427 Cheetah. At Jim Pattison’s on Main, getting some service work done on his dad’s car, they spotted a 1968 427 Cheetah in for some work, and George’s older brother asked his Dad to trade their car for the Cheetah so he could drive it when he turned 16. No deal was made, as that car was not for sale, and George never saw that 68 Cheetah again. By chance, to further burn the Cheetah into young George’s impressionable mind, coming home with his parent’s friends in West Vancouver one evening, the Conroy Pontiac sign could easily be seen, and George knew this was where those special cars came from. He does not remember seeing the ads in the papers or magazines, but was hooked all the same.
It also had the following factory options; tined windshield, bucket seats, head restraints, shoulder belts, console, vinyl roof, D96 body side stripes, tach, AM radio, and bumper guards. Once the car was finished six years ago, it has attended many of the great car shows around, including the Chicago Muscle Car and Corvette Nationals, Muscle Cars at the Playboy Mansion, Bob’s Big Boy drive in Burbank, a private viewing by none other than Jay Leno at Jay’s workshop in the L.A. Area, and the Supercar Sunday at Woodland Hills in L.A. that every four weeks puts on an impromptu car show with 1,000 cars. It has been shown at the Yenko Supercar Show twice, and raced in Collinsburg, Illinois and the Puyallup Corvette and High-Performance Car Show.
As an adult heavily into muscle cars, George was following a lead on a Corvette 396 four-bolt main block, and after buying it and talking about cars with the guy, it was mentioned that George should buy the guy’s father’s Having owned eight 454 Chevelles, 12 car. George then spent a lot of time with the father and it became evident COPO cars and three L88 Corvettes, and he was never going to put the Cheetah back together again. The car was having a drag race car for 38 years, George is no stranger to high-performance cars. Owning one of the ones he lusted after as a boy certainly holds a special place in his garage....until a 1968 Cheetah 427 comes along!
The “Cheetah” was a “souped-up” version of the Beaumont SD396. The Beaumont, for clarification, is a Chevrolet Chevelle body with unique grille and rear taillight assembly, and was utilized by Pontiac Canada, designated as the Beaumont, and sold only in Canada. This still confuses many Americans (and even some Canadians!) 40+ years later and results in most Beaumonts being referred to as “Canadian Chevelles.” Not so; those were made by Chevrolet Canada as well! Add to this the fact that ALL Canadian Pontiacs used a Chevrolet frame, engine, driveline, suspension and brake components, and the confusion becomes understandable. 48 Rods & Classics RPM Oct / Nov 2013
HISTORY PLUGGED IN
Car City is Volkswagen’s celebration of all things automotive Story and photos by Budd Stanley
Upon my arrival, I was greeted in the parking lot by a particularly special VW, at least in my mind, a rare MKII Golf Rallye encased in a glass cocoon. The Rallye was VW’s answer to the BMW E30 M3 of the day, sporting a more aerodynamic front fascia, sexy boxed flares and a G60 supercharged 1.8-litre that pumped 210 horsepower to all four wheels. If this is what VW throws out in the parking lot as decoration, I can only imagine what it has in store in the protected confines of its hermetically-sealed pavilions.
mongst the sprawling smoke stacks and brick-and-mortar buildings of a massive dark industrial complex sits a piece of real estate that can only be called an automotive paradise. This paradise, with its rolling green hills, lagoons, dancing water spouts and modern architecture is Autostadt, a part of the Volkswagen factory in Wolfsburg, Germany. Autostadt (car city in English) is not just a beautiful corner of the factory complex, but an interpretive centre for those who love cars to come and find a new addition to the driveway, pick up a product I purchased my pass in what can only be described as an architectural already ordered, or to gasp at incomprehensibly expensive supercars masterpiece, a building with six-story-tall elliptical glass walls that spin open to create a slight cooling breeze. Passing beyond the glass and historic icons. wings, I step out into Autostadt, reminiscent of a futuristic sci-fi movie set full of bright colours and clean designs, where everyone is enjoying themselves, and not a frown is to be seen.
With water spouts putting on a show in the lagoon that marks the centre of the grounds, I start to hit up the automotive pavilions. These are simply glorified showrooms for all of VW’s conquered brands, showing the current lineups amongst wonderful architecture and art. Porsche, Seat, Skoda and Audi were all somewhat entertaining, followed by 20minutes of my life that I just will never get back, spent standing behind a cage looking up at a four-year-old Lamborghini plastered to the wall with smoke and lights moving about and being bombarded by notes of a V12 at full chat. The car spins outside behind a smoke screen, and then reappears. That’s it, that’s all, 20 minutes I’ll never get back. However, the pièce de résistance was the ZeitHaus (TimeHouse) that not only acts as the museum for all of VW’s creations through the last 76 years of its history, but also looks over some of the most prestigious Rods & Classics RPM Oct / Nov 2013 49
and important vehicles to ever be built. It is not just a celebration of “didn’t think I’d ever see one” moment with an Auto-Union Typ C Grand VW history, but of the automobile as a whole. Prix machine with its incredible twin-supercharged V16 engine Out front sits another piece of lore, a Porsche 16-cylinder boxer engine sitting on a pedestal for all to prototype that was to power the 917 CanAm cars, safely sealed in a admire. glass box for all to see. Entering the ZeitHaus I’m met with the best host I could imagine - a simple, clean, white 1978 Volkswagen GTi, I was now getting into serious the epitome and genesis of VW performance vehicles. The lone white machinery as I worked my way GTi stood elegantly in an equally sterile white foyer with a ceiling that down floor after floor of magreaches to the top of the building’s six stories. The first floor is a celebra- nificence; the Auto-Union was tion of the pioneering VWs, the Type 1, Type 2 and Type 3. followed up by a Lamborghini Countach (whose V12 was The long escalator ride to the top floor welcomed me with a display also out on display), Porsche of automotive royalty. A 1938 BMW 328 and Bugatti Type 15 flank Carrera GT and the manic the “I never thought I would ever see one” 1938 Type 57SC Atlantic. Volkswagen W12 supercar. Unfortunately, my elation was quickly culled as the corresponding And if that wasn’t enough, literature confirmed this to be a replica, an extremely exquisite replica, throw a Bugatti Veyron in there but a replica nonetheless. I should have known, since only four were for good measure. ever built. The ZeitHaus was an incredHowever, my disappointment was not to last long. As I meandered my ible discovery, that didn’t just way through the museum, the crush of the Bugatti was quelled by the honour Volkswagen’s own likes of a Porsche 956, Lamborghini Miura S, Jaguar E-Type, Cadil- heritage, but that of cars that lac Eldorado and on and on. Soon I found myself in front of a classic changed the way people designed, engineered and drove vehicles. It 18-window Type 2 VW Bus, followed by a 1924 Bentley 3 Litre Speed, was a hugely rewarding experience that I can’t recommend enough, Delorean DMC 12, Citroen 2CV, Honda S800 and Messerschmitt although if you make it to Autostadt, be sure you have a full day to KR200 bubble car. Another story down, I stumbled upon another, dedicate to this gem.
50 Rods & Classics RPM Oct / Nov 2013
Peking-toParis Lures Canadians By Nigel Matthews
he Peking (now called Beijing) to Paris motor race (now called a rally) was the first transcontinental motor-rally, covering a grueling distance of 14,994 kilometres (9,317 miles). The idea for the race came from a challenge published in the Paris newspaper Le Matin on January 31, 1907, reading: “What needs to be proved today is that as long as a man has a car, he can do anything and go anywhere. Is there anyone who will undertake to travel this summer from Peking to Paris by automobile?” The second Peking-to-Paris did not take place until the summer of 1997, and has since grown into the Greatest Motoring Adventure and without question a bucket list event for any serious classic vehicle owner who enjoys rallying. This year’s event began on May 28 and concluded on June 29 travelling through Peking (Great Wall of China), Inner Mongolia (Gobi Desert), Outer Mongolia (Ulaan Baatar and Telmen Lake), Russia (Novosibirsk, Omsk, Tyumen, Samara) Ukraine (Kyiv, Lviv) Slovakia (Kosice, Bratislava), Austria (Schladming), Switzerland (Gstaad), France (Troyes, Paris). The majority of the 100 entrants in four classes came from Australia, Great Britain, New Zealand, Switzerland and the U.S. A strong entry from Canada consisted of five vehicles, four from British Columbia and one from Alberta. They did extremely well with all finishing. I had the pleasure of inspecting the vehicles on behalf of FIVA (Fédération International des Véhicles Anciens) so they could obtain an identity card required to compete in International events.
the class that completed the event, the four Canadian entries finished in the following order: No. 26, Tony and Lee Strelzow in a 1936 Bentley DHC placed 4th, winning a gold award.
Technically, Team Strelzow won their class, because despite posting faster times, the three cars that came in ahead did not have F.I.V.A certification because their vehicles were modified. Modifications can make a big difference! They also won the European Championship Cup which is a separate race category There were 42 cars in the Vintage Category (pre-1941 models). for the European Portion of the race, which started in Kiev and When they crossed the finish line in Paris, of the 42 cars in concluded in Paris. No. 33, Glen Duthie/Allan Cullen in a 1939 Cadillac LaSalle placed 18th, achieving a silver award. No. 21, John and Gary Anderson in a 1930 Model A Ford Cabriolet placed 22nd, achieving a bronze award. No. 7, The Vancouver team of Jenny Mah/Loren Cocking in a 1928 Model A Ford Phaeton placed 34th, achieving a bronze award. In the Classic Category for pre-1975 model cars, totaling 54 in the class, Canadian finishers included: No. 95, Kim Widick/Lee Treeter from Alberta in a 1960 Chevrolet Impala placed 35th, achieving a bronze award.
Nigel Matthews is Director of Sales and Marketing for Hagerty Canada – the world’s leading specialist provider of collector car and boat insurance. Contact him at nmatthews@hagerty. com or visit Hagerty.ca Rods & Classics RPM Oct / Nov 2013 51
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52 Rods & Classics RPM Oct / Nov 2013
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Rods & Classics RPM Oct / Nov 2013 53
Parting Shots is where we share those photos that defy classification. If you’ve seen something fourwheeled (or otherwise) that you would like to share, please send it to email@example.com
It works, but it probably isn’t the safest option.
That’s got to be one of the most dangerous things we’ve ever seen.
You have to wonder what is going through some peoples heads when you see stufff like this. Who needs airbags when you can just tape matresses to the car.
54 Rods & Classics RPM Oct / Nov 2013