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Mazda shows off limited edition MX-5 Miata in New York

Mazda has been making one of the most raced cars in motorsports for 25 years now with the Miata having a birthday this year. To celebrate the 25th anniversary of the launch of the original Miata, Mazda has a limited edition 2015 MX-5 that will have some special touches that has debuted at the New York International Auto Show.

 

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Mazda plans to sell only 100 of the 25th anniversary models in the US. Mazda says that it selected the best balanced parts for the engine in these cars. The anniversary edition will only be offers in Soul Red Metallic premium coat, which looks like maroon. All of the cars will be power retractable hard top models with a black top, mirrors, and windshield surround. The car also has dark colored alloy wheels. It looks to be derived from the Club version.

Continue reading 'Mazda shows off limited edition MX-5 Miata in New York' (full post)

First production 2015 Corvette Z06 raises $1 million for charity

Chevrolet announced a while back that it would be donating the very first production 2015 Corvette Z06 to charity. The car was auctioned off recently at the Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Auction in Palm Beach, Florida on April 12.

 

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All proceeds from the sale of the car went to the Karmanos Cancer Institute infusion center. That center provides a comfortable setting for patients to receive chemotherapy treatments. The winning bidder is a name that people who follow racing will recognize.

Continue reading 'First production 2015 Corvette Z06 raises $1 million for charity' (full post)

Tops hacked off 100 Tesla Model S EVs to make convertibles

Tesla is a company that makes electric vehicles that are some of the best EVs on the market today. Tesla got its start with a small sporty car called the Roadster that was more of a targa top car than a real convertible. Buyers can now get an unofficial convertible version of the Model S EV from a company called Newport Convertible Engineering.

 

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Newport says that it is working with a Chinese investor to make 100 Model S convertibles. The exact steps it takes to turn these cars into convertibles is unknown. The process would involve cutting and lots of bracing for the chassis.

Continue reading 'Tops hacked off 100 Tesla Model S EVs to make convertibles' (full post)

Scientific study concludes: US is an oligarchy, not a democracy

In a recent report from the academic journal Perspectives on Politics, the United States is not a democracy, but is instead, an oligarchy. For those who aren't up with fancy words, this means that the US government is very, very corrupt.

 

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The study's opening question is quite an eye-opener in itself, where it asks: "Who governs? Who really rules?" in the United States. The answer: "Despite the seemingly strong empirical support in previous studies for theories of majoritarian democracy, our analyses suggest that majorities of the American public actually have little influence over the policies our government adopts. Americans do enjoy many features central to democratic governance, such as regular elections, freedom of speech and association, and a widespread (if still contested) franchise".

 

They continue: "But... America's claims to being a democratic society are seriously threatened". The findings in the report shows that there is instead "the nearly total failure of 'median voter' and other Majoritarian Electoral Democracy theories [of America]. When the preferences of economic elites and the stands of organized interest groups are controlled for, the preferences of the average American appear to have only a minuscule, near-zero, statistically non-significant impact upon public policy".

Continue reading 'Scientific study concludes: US is an oligarchy, not a democracy' (full post)

Chevrolet shows off track-ready Corvette Z06 convertible

One of the coolest cars that Chevrolet has rolled out in years is the new 2015 Corvette Z06. That car is built from the ground up with all sorts of tech that is aimed at making it perform very well on the racetrack and street. The Z06 coupe is a targa roof car, which means the roof panel over the driver and passenger comes off.

 

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People wanting an even more open-air driving experience can also get the Z06 in a convertible. Chevy is showing off the Z06 convertible and it looks very nice. Other than chopping the roof off, the car has the same specifications. One thing that did require repackaging was the differential and transmission coolers, which had to be moved from the tops of the rear fenders to the underbody.

Continue reading 'Chevrolet shows off track-ready Corvette Z06 convertible' (full post)

BMW Concept X5 eDrive is a slick AWD hybrid SUV

BMW has announced a new concept car that will go on display at the New York International Auto show. The car is called the BMW Concept X5 eDrive. This car is notable because it is the first vehicle from BMW to combine its xDrive all wheel drive system with its eDrive hybrid technology.

 

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The result is an SUV that promises performance, fuel efficiency, and low emissions. The X5 concept can drive for up to 20 miles on battery power alone. While on battery power, the car can reach speeds of 75mph. BMW says that on the EU test cycle, the SUV achieved 74.3mph.

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The Netherlands is now home to glow-in-the-dark roads

The Netherlands is testing out a new technology on a 500m, or 0.3 miles, stretch of highway - using light-absorbing glow-in-the-dark road markings. These markings have replaced streetlights on the stretch of highway.

 

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Rewinding back to 2012, Studio Roosegaarde proposed the design, and after much jumping through the usual government hoops, the finished product is shaping up incredibly well. The studios founder and lead designer, Daan Roosegaarde, said: "One day I was sitting in my car in the Netherlands, and I was amazed by these roads we spend millions on but no one seems to care what they look like and how they behave. I started imagining this Route 66 of the future where technology jumps out of the computer screen and becomes part of us".

 

The future of this new roll out will include weather markings, where snowdrops would appear when the temperature would hit a certain level. The glow-in-the-dark stretch of highway at the moment uses a photo-luminescent powder that is integrated into the road paint, something that was developed in conjunction with Heijmans, a road construction company.

BMW recalls 156,000 cars for loosening bolts that could damage engine

BMW has announced a major recall for certain vehicles from the 2010-2012 model years that have a defect that could cause damage to the engine. BMW is recalling 156,000 cars that include models in its popular 3 Series range.

 

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Other models covered in the recall include certain 5 Series and Z4 sports cars. All of these recalled vehicles have 6-cylinder engines. The German automaker says that the problem is that bolts holding certain components of the engine are prone to breaking or loosening. If the bolts break or loosen, damage to the engine could occur.

Continue reading 'BMW recalls 156,000 cars for loosening bolts that could damage engine' (full post)

Making employees answer work e-mails past 6pm now illegal in France

The French government has just made it illegal for the country's tech and consultancy sectors to answer e-mails after 6pm. Not only that, but phoen calls and texts are also banned after 6pm.

 

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The reason behind this is that employer groups and work unions from France's tech and consultancy sectors signed a new, legally binding labor agreement that will see staff switching off their work phones after 6pm. Considering France has a strong workforce of 40 million, the agreement only affects just one million of those workers.

 

But, it reaches far and wide, including French-based parts of Google, Facebook and more. The law could be extended into other sectors, something that I think we'll see done soon. The law makers it illegal for employers to force their employees to work past 6pm, but also recommends workers try and resist the itch to look at work-related material once it passes 6pm.

Bentley plug-in hybrid concept heads to China

When I hear the Bentley name, I typically think of big and heavy cars packed with lots of luxury and power to give them surprising performance. Bentley isn't a name I would think about as offering hybrids. That will change with Bentley set to show off its plug-in hybrid tech in China this month.

 

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Bentley will be showing off the plug-in hybrid technology under the hood of its top of the line Mulsanne. While eventually the hybrid tech will be made available across almost all of Bentley's models, to start with the Mulsanne being used to show off the tech won't be offered to purchase.

 

Bentley will make the first commercial use of the hybrid tech in a new SUV set to hit the road in 2017. Bentley's plug-in hybrid system promises to improve performance by 25% while reducing emissions by 90%. Despite the bulk of most Bentley vehicles, the hybrid tech will be able to drive for at least 50km on electricity alone. The plug-in hybrid concept car will be unveiled on April 20 at the Beijing International Automotive Exhibition.

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