Cure Your Diabetes

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

2012 Ferrari FF

Article file under

OMG! The winningest team in Formula 1 and the company that best translates that racing technology to its road cars has gone off the reservation and built an all-wheel-drive wagon with a suspension that goes up and down like a Range Rover's. Not even Nostradamus saw this coming. The Mayans were right -- the world is ending in 2012!

Ferrari offers 16 standard colors, 10 colors inspired by the 1960's, 12 non-standard colors, and 3 three-layer colors. Pair them with polished, matte, or black rims, six caliper colors, and myriad combinations of interior monotone or multi-tone leathers and stitching. An online configurator makes them all available for internet dreamers.Such was the hysterical reaction of many following the Geneva unveiling of Ferrari's latest V-12 grand tourer, the FF.

That's because the company decided to go for a revolutionary redesign of the 612 Scaglietti with the aim of luring more rich golfers and skiers. Basically the design brief was this: Make the car fit four full-sized 95th-percentile adults, plus a couple of tournament golf bags or four people's roller bags for a weekend getaway within the 612's footprint, while ensuring that it could A) reach the slopes safely in winter, and B) perform like any other Ferrari on dry pavement.

Those packaging requirements pretty much forced Pininfarina into the controversial square-back design (call it a "shooting-brake" if you're fancy), but at least this shape contributed to the 20-percent improvement in overall aerodynamic efficiency. By raising the roof just 1.4 inches, the car can snugly carry four 6-footers while providing Porsche Panamera-topping luggage space in back.

The performance targets sent the engineering department to their drawing boards. The first goal requires all-wheel-drive (plus proper winter tires and that optional hydraulic lift that boosts ground clearance by 1.6 inches up to 20 mph), while the second demands a rear weight and drive-torque bias. Those divergent requirements basically ruled out every known AWD system since the Jensen FF's, including Nissan's tangle of driveshafts and transaxle solution. (It adds too much weight and wrecks the underbody packaging.)

More article, Click here

2012 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1

Article file under

You don't have to be a Camaro fan, or even a Chevrolet fan, to appreciate the 2012 Camaro ZL1. You may well think the Ford Shelby Mustang GT500 is the greatest car ever built, but you still read every word of our ZL1 first look to see what Ford's up against. Get ready to see new super Chevy in a whole new light.

You see, we were able to schedule a little private time with the ZL1 following its big debut at last month's 2011 Chicago auto show. Think of it more as a sensual massage than a one-night stand. Chevy wasn't going to let us get all handsy with their latest star, but a private modeling session? Why not? Chevy brought the car, we brought the cameras and a good time was had by all in the strategically-lit room.

How could it not be fun? After all, this is the Camaro we've been asking Chevy to deliver since we first drove the fifth-generation SS. It's the car we enthusiasts would build if we could pick through GM's parts bin without having to pay for it. Carbon-ceramic brakes and magneto-rheological shocks cribbed from the mighty Corvette ZR1? Check. A 550-horsepower LSA supercharged V-8 cribbed from the giant-killing Cadillac CTS-V? Check. Aggressive, but restrained styling? Check, but to be fair, they could've taken it a step farther. A steering wheel and shift knob we'd actually want to hold? Double check. Nice to hear the guys at Chevy were listening.

As we alluded to, though, this was a first date in suburbia, not a Vegas fling. Chevrolet wasn't about to throw a bunch of "drive it like you ain't payin' for it" journalists the keys to their only prototype for a romp in the neighborhood. We were, however, able to pry the keys from the car's handlers long enough to fire up the ZL1 and take in its aural delights.

Join us, then, by proxy. Fire up the video and hear the 2012 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 for the first time as it roars to life and gives us just a little tease of musical chops. Tease. We'll be back for more when Chevrolet decides to let its latest offspring venture out in the world and date the jerks, but for now, enjoy the happy ending.

More article, Click Here