Words by Christopher Kho | Photos courtesy of the Ford Motor Company
 
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In its entire 44-year history, Formula Ford finally received its most radical revolution yet as the 2012-spec machine rolls out into daylight for the very first time at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show. You see, the single-seaters used in competition today have been largely unchanged in the last 20 odd years and are in dire need of an upgrade - both in shape and safety. Thus, to bring the latest Formula Ford racer up to par with Formula 1 and Formula 3, its bodywork is injected with the blue oval brand's kinetic design philosophy and fitted on an updated chassis that meets stringent FIA safety standards. Looks like the new generation of Formula Ford's are ready to race into the future.
Published in Motorsports
Words by Christopher Kho | Photos courtesy of Mercedes-Benz
 
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Mercedes-Benz's successful DTM challenger has lost a pair of rear doors in its chase for the 2012 title. With 84 race victories and five driver titles under its belt in the DTM's 27-year history, the C-Class AMG will finally hand over the torch to the latest 2012 DTM AMG Mercedes C-Coupé.
 
Mercedes GP Petronas F1 drivers Michael Schumacher and Nico Rosberg took time off their busy schedules to unveil the three-pointed star's newest DTM dagger at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show. Based on the freshly-launched Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupé, it too shares its state-of-the-art carbon fiber monocoque/steel roll cage structure with other manufacturers Audi and BMW to lower costs. The improved safety cell gives the additional protection for the driver through six energy-absorbing crash structures, which should prove handy in case of a collision.
Published in Motorsports
Words by Christopher Kho | Photos courtesy of Volvo Car Corporation
 
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Back in April, Volvo bit off more than they could chew when they tried to take on the Universe. That's why four months later, they decided to go back to the drawing board and tackle something more manageable starting with You. Reborn at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show, the Concept You was built as a statement of “Scandinavian Heritage, Scandinavian Passion, Scandinavian Light, and Scandinavian Craftmanship.” But all this Scandinavian pride somehow feels that there's a hint of Scandinavian insecurity behind the brand's new oriental owners.
 
Taking the form of a sporty fastback coupé, the Concept You wields ventilated disc brakes by Polestar racing and 21-inch polished aluminum rims. And since its last inception, it has grown a pair of rear sunroofs and traded the futuristic grill for one with more class, but manages to retain the decorated side mirrors. Overall, Volvo's hoping to appeal to a wider audience with its younger and sportier character.
Published in Concept
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 19:55

Ford gets sexy with the feisty Fiesta ST Concept

Words by Christopher Kho | Photos courtesy of the Ford Motor Company
 
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FoFi fans have more reason to party on the Fiesta's first birthday as Ford gets the show on the road with the feisty Fiesta ST Concept. Powered by a turbocharged Ti-VCT 1.6-liter EcoBost engine, this hot hatch is ready to knock your socks off with its 180 horses and 240 Nm of torque. And when coupled to a manual six-speed transmission, it takes less than seven seconds in the sprint to 100 km/h and top out at 220 km/h, if you've got the balls for it. Ford has wiped the smirk off its face and replaced it with a menacing grin, transforming this humble hatchback into a scandalous sportster worthy of an ST badge.
Published in Concept
Tuesday, 13 September 2011 20:37

Audi's A5 DTM is ready to wrestle

Words by Christopher Kho | Photos courtesy of Audi AG
 
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Two months after the first design sketches were revealed, Audi's 2012 DTM contender is finally ready to step into the limelight at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show. The new Audi A5 DTM will be the first ever two-door coupe from the four rings brand to enter into international touring car series. And when it hits the track next year, it should be fit to slug it out with the best from BMW and Mercedes-Benz. 
 
Conforming to new Technical Regulations, the A5 DTM shares as much as 50 components with other cars on the grid to reduce costs by 40 percent. Its front and rear subframes are now identical throughout all DTM manufacturers, but underneath the composite body sits a freshly-designed hybrid carbon fiber monocoque and steel cage chassis to improve safety. Adding to that are more stringent material and production specifications for suspension components, which greatly limits the suspension's design options.
Published in Motorsports
Words by Christopher Kho | Photos courtesy of Jaguar Cars Limited
 
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The big cat has coughed up a new hairball and looks like it’s ready to pounce at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show. Codenamed the C-X16, Jaguar's latest super sports car is a 375 horsepower two-seater hybrid that's meant to bang heads with the likes of the Carrera 911, C6 Corvette, and V8 Vantage. Although it's still in the concept phase, the prototype reveals that it should be production ready and is well shaping up to be the XKR's successor
 
With big shoes to fill, the new supercharged 3.0 liter V6 power plant might sound like a downgrade from the XK's V8, but let me assure you that it hasn't lost any of its grunt and purrs just as sweet. Packing 375 horsepower and 450 Nm of torque, the C-X16 leaps from 0 to 100 km/h in just 4.4 seconds and should reach 300 km/h if you've got the balls to keep the pedal to the floor.
Published in Concept
Thursday, 01 September 2011 07:47

Ford sees the future through the Evos Concept

Words by Christopher Kho | Photos courtesy of the Ford Motor Company
 
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Travel through time as the blue oval brand takes us far into the future with its Frankfurt-bound Evos Concept car. Created to express Ford's new global design direction, this is one concept that dwells more on the 'what can be' rather than the 'what will be.' That means there's only a slim chance that this sleek sedan will ever make it into production, but its technologies and design elements will. And yes, that's right, though it might look like a coupe, this one's actually a cool four-door saloon.
Published in Concept