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Showing posts from 2012

Snow Driving Tips

With snow on the roads, grip is reduced and, as a result, a vehicle's ability to accelerate, brake and turn is also reduced. Here are a few winter driving tips that could help you drive safer while there's snow on the ground.


Starting up

- Roll into the gas pedal: When taking off, always apply very little pressure on the gas pedal and start to roll into it very slowly to avoid losing traction and spinning the wheels.

- Start in 2nd gear: In manual/standard vehicles, especially those with high torque outputs, it may be helpful to start in 2nd gear as it will have less torque at the wheels and will be less likely to spin.

- Don't keep spinning: If, while you're trying to get going, the wheels keep spinning but you are not moving, lift off the gas right away. For one, the tires most likely will keep spinning without going anywhere and you could dig the tires deeper in the snow. For another, if you actually start moving, you could damage the gears and be faced with a very e…

Winter Car Maintenance Tips

It's this time of the year again and I thought I would share a few winter maintenance tips that can be overlooked but they can keep a vehicle running better and more safely.


1- Tires

They're the only components that connect your vehicle to the road. Regardless of the capability of a vehicle's drivetrain and suspension or how strong the brakes are, they will handle only as well as the tires allow them to. Always get snow tires and not summer or all season tires if snow stays on the ground. If you only get rain but no snow where you live, all season tires are a great choice.

Check tread regularly to make sure the grooves are deep enough. Tires have wear bars which indicate  when the amount of tread left is unsafe for driving. Snow tires have two wear bars; one for dry/wet driving and one for snow driving. If the tread is at the taller wear bar (the snow wear bar), the tires are not safe for snow driving but may still be used in the rain or dry. If the tread reaches the lower …

Super wagons, anyone?

What do you get when take a powerful V8, add a capable chassis, RWD or AWD and wrap it up in a 4 door shell with a large hatch behind the rear seat? Super wagons.. a super fast, tire shredding, grocery getters with performance that challenges supercars.

Audi has just revealed its new Audi RS6 wagon with a 4.0 litre twin turbo V8 putting out 552 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque. Audi estimates a 0-62 mph time (0-100 km/h) of 3.9 s but judging by Motor Trend's test and dyno of the Audi S8 which uses basically the same engine, I expect the acceleration and output numbers to be on the conservative side. I wouldn't be surprised if the engine puts out about the same power as the one in the S8 but Audi just gave them different ratings to market this as being more sporty.

The idea of a powerful people mover is nothing new. Large station wagons with powerful V8's were not unusual but, unfortunately, after the oil crisis of 1973, the power wars started to die. The power wars are back thou…

Handling a Nissan GTR on A Wet Track - A Closer Look

I have talked to many people who tried to argue that AWD gives the Nissan GTR a traction advantage over RWD competitors.. which is true. However, they argue that, because of the AWD drivetrain, the GTR has another advantage which is that it can be driven year round, in inclement weather. They also usually refer to the GTR's Nurburgring lap time as a wet lap time because the track was slightly damp at a few spots and that it would be several seconds faster if it had been completely dry. I disagree.

The GTR's power and suspension setup isn't meant for all weather capability.. add that to a performance oriented AWD drivetrain, and all weather capability starts to seem very unlikely.



The video shows an Audi A1 quattro with just over 250 hp that has no problem at all keeping up with a Nissan GTR, which has more than twice the power, on a wet course. In fact, at several points in the video, the Audi A1 seems like it had a good shot at passing the GTR. The advantages of the Audi,…

How to deal with drunk drivers

Luckily, I haven't been involved with any drunk drivers but I know many people who have. It is never pleasant, whether there is a collision or not. I saw this video yesterday and decided to make a post about  it. The driver in the Subaru does appear to be drunk but, IMO, this is definitely NOT the way to deal with a drunk driver.

The driving could have swerved violently across the lanes and hit this guy while he was passing. He could brake too quickly while you're close behind or accelerate and lose control while you're in front.



MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) Canada has been encouraging drivers to call 911 when they suspect there is a drunk driver and they list a few signs for drunk drivers:

 - Driving unreasonably fast, slow or at an inconsistent speed
 - Driving in and out of lanes
 - Tailgating and changing lanes frequently
 - Making exceptionally wide turns
 - Changing lanes or passing without sufficient clearance
 - Overshooting or stopping well before stop sig…

The 2013 Audi S8 - A Closer Look

A few days ago, I made a post about about Motor Trend's test of the Audi S8. It does a 0-60 mph sprint in 3.5 seconds and goes through the 1/4 mile in 11.8 @ 118.3 mph.. very impressive numbers. Even more so when you look at a couple other cars:

2012 Porsche Panamera Turbo S
0-60 mph: 3.5 s
1/4 mile: 11.8 s @ 118.0 mph
Power: 550 hp
Torque: 553 lb-ft
Weight: 4,388 lb

2012 Audi R8 GT
0-60 mph: 3.5 s
1/4 mile: 11.5 s @ 125.1 mph
Power: 560 hp
Torque: 398 lb-ft
Weight: 3,484 lb

Now let's compare those to the Audi S8
0-60 mph: 3.5 s
1/4 mile: 11.8 @ 118.3 mph
Power 520 hp
Torque: 481 lb-ft
Weight: 4,619 lb

The Panamera and R8 have weight to power ratios of 7.98 lb/hp and 6.22 lb/hp. The S8? Well, that one has a weight to power ratio of 8.88 lb/hp... The identical 0-60 time of the R8 GT and S8 can somewhat be explained by their engines' way of induction. Since the R8 is NA, the torque curve probably isn't as meaty so even though it weighs a lot less and has a higher weight …

Faster than A Corvette Z06? - A Closer Look

"its test-track acceleration numbers would match the Porsche Panamera Turbo and embarrass a Chevrolet Corvette Z06 owner." That's what Motor Trend had to say about the 2013 Audi S8 after a test. Let's get the facts out of the way first: the Audi S8 is fast.. very fast, especially for a 4,600+ lb sedan.

According to their test, it gets from 0 to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds and finishes a 1/4 mile in a mere 11.8 seconds @ 118.3 mph. That's impressive. Apparently, though, it's not impressive enough to attract readers so something extra had to be said. Track test acceleration numbers would embarrass a Chevrolet Z06 owner? How? I looked up Z06 acceleration numbers.. from Motor Trend tests. I found 5 different tests and all of them pull a 0-60 mph in a consistent 3.8 seconds, except for the Z06 with the Z07 package which does it in 3.7 seconds. 1/4 mile? 2 tests are at 11.6 seconds, 1 test is at 11.7, 1 is at 11.8 and another at 11.9. So out of 5 tests, the Corvette was …

An unfortunate first post.. or is it?

Well, I took my car in for service today because my passenger side rear tire was losing pressure. The car had been parked during the last week of October because of the bad weather. When I took the car out last week, a low tire pressure warning came on and I thought it was just because the car was parked for a week in cold weather so I simply filled up the tires and drove away. While I was filling the tires, I heard a slight "hissing" noise but I didn't think much of it and thought it was just the air compressor.

The next day, the low tire pressure warning was back and I figured the hissing noise must have been coming from one of the tires. I checked tire pressure all around and one of them was down to 15 psi. Now I know I definitely have a problem. I filled it up because I had to go run some errands and drove away. I get in the car the next morning and, yes, the warning was back. I scheduled an appointment to get the tire checked because I couldn't see any damage.

I…

Well, I finally put it into gear!

Hi everyone, my name is Mike. I am very passionate about cars and I enjoy driving to the fullest. I enjoy long stretches of highways and twisty backroads.. a late night drive and a rush hour commute.. I'm almost always up for a drive, regardless of time, place and purpose, but there are a couple of things that could ruin a drive for me; bad road manners and poor road conditions, namely broken up roads. As a result, I almost always have something to say about what happens on the road, car news and car reviews so I figured I would start blogging.

I decided to start a driving blog a while back but I haven't got to it yet. I have finally put it into gear, though, so here's what to expect: I will share anything from everyday driving experiences to track driving and possibly car reviews. I will be filming while driving - using a car camera mount, not while holding the camera - and will include relevant clips along with some posts. I think this concludes my introduction so drive …