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Pittsburg, Pennsylvania finds itself at the center of what might be one of the defining moments where one hundred years from now the world looks back and says – it all began in Pittsburg. Is this steel related, or even Steelers related? No, the city once known as a rust-belt capital has transformed itself over the past 30 years into a technology hub thanks to leading research institutions and universities such as Carnegie Melon. This has been advanced further with the novel partnership between the aforementioned Carnegie Melon and Uber to launch to the Ford Fusion, the first self-driving Uber car that is currently on the road in the great city of Pittsburg.

So now that the prototype is up and running, the next step, similar to the founding of our great nation, is the document and set of rules to guide its implementation. An unfamiliar move by President Obama, last week he opined in [...]

After Porsche released the Cayenne, it should have been clear to everyone that no manufacturer is out of the question when it comes to breaking into the SUV or Crossover market. Some manufacturers are obviously more natural fits – Honda, Mercedes, Kia, BMW, the list is honestly endless. But sports car lines or extreme luxury manufacturers are definitely the outliers. However, after hearing that Rolls-Royce is now the next “outlier” to break ranks and dive into the SUV pool, even we must admit a level of shock.

Rolls is insisting that the model is not a SUV. Rather, a “high-bodied car” is the term of choice and is based on a project called Cullinan. While theories abound as to why Rolls is avoiding the SUV terminology, according to company spokespersons the car is not necessarily sport nor utility oriented. It is “high-sided” or “high-bodied” and that in itself does not necessarily make it a SUV [...]

The Nissan Sentra, like the Honda Civic, Accord, Toyota Camry, were all standard 80s and 90s classics that were as ubiquitous as a corner Italian pizzeria. Either you owned one, had a family member that did, or knew someone on your block with one of the above. And the reason was? Reliability, great price point, and from a design perspective, attractive just enough.

The Sentra came on the scene in 1982. It was a direct replacement for the Datsun 210 and was available in four distinct body styles – 2-door, 4-door, 4-door wagon and the 3-door hatchback coupe. While the design differed somewhat the overall offer was quite similar.

This consistency over time however has just run head-first into a wall. Whether that wall is made of brick or glass is all dependent on how the public takes to the new 2017 Nissan – a Nissan turbo. That’s right, this will be the first time [...]

Manual versus automatic transmission. If this topic were placed in a time machine and zipped back 15 years, you would find an array of folks on both sides of the “argument.” Traditionally, manual transmissions were more geared towards car enthusiasts or at least those that really valued the ability to control and feel their car. Manual transmissions really do add another element to driving, but technology over these past 15 years have all but eliminated them from the modern day discussion.

A great piece of journalism emerged last week surrounding the challenges an anonymous fellow had attempting to sell a turbocharged, relatively new VW Beetle on Craigslist. In the post, the word “manual” showed up repeatedly, was prominently mentioned in various places, and a diligent reader would come away with a pretty clear message – this is a manual transmission car.

Yet, when the handful of folks showed up to see the car in person, [...]

There’s a great website,, which gives Apple fanatics a daily dose (multiple doses in reality) of what’s really truth or fiction surrounding the bevy of Apple rumors that swirl around on a consistent basis. In regards to the much ballyhooed autonomous driving project, “Project Titan” to those in the know, the car remains in the early stages of development under the direction of Bob Mansfield. Mansfield took over the project in 2012 and is said to be advancing “Project Titan” at a secret location near Cupertino where Apple headquarters are located.

Sounds like an 80’s Bond thriller, right? Well here is where the rails come off. The New York Times is reporting that dozens of employees involved with “Project Titan” have been laid off and the focus now is reported to be shifting towards autonomous technology rather than an autonomous vehicle under the Apple brand.

This is a massive shift if true. Google, Uber [...]

Broken record alert … Tesla has the electric car market on lock-down. Well, maybe not lock-down, but at least from an innovation/technological perspective Elon Musk and company have positioned themselves at the head of the pack. This should probably come as no surprise, but what was a surprise is what surfaced from Chevy earlier this month. Drumroll please …

The Chevy Bolt, Chevy’s flagship electric offering, can beat (according to Chevy) the Tesla Model 3 with an official range of 238 miles. Let’s put this in perspective. For East Coast dwellers, the Bolt can traverse on one battery charge from the U.S. Capitol to the Empire State Building. Quite a distance, and this would make it the first electric vehicle sold in the U.S. to surpass a 200 mile range.

At a starting price of under $40,000, the Bolt handedly beats the 2018 Model 3 set to arrive with a 215 mile range. The average [...]

Electrically assisted power steering (EPS) has essentially replaced its predecessor, hydraulic assist occupying a computer-controlled model. It was sort of the smart, evolutionary step most manufacturers were taking moving forward. Yet, complaints have arisen which has led Ford, among others, to actually take a step back.

So, an EPS system saves weight, space and fuel. The downside is drivers report that the steering feeling is at times lacking. Essentially that innate connection a driver has with her/her car. If that feel is missing, we then something is certainly missing.

The new Ford GT (and its followers) have had it. Back to the old-school and Ford is releasing the new GT with hydraulic-assist power steering. GT fans are already buzzing and we don’t blame them. Yet, Ford isn’t the only one. BMW offers both types of assists on their 5-series and sales suggest there is enough market share out there for both.

With a hydraulic system [...]

The Porsche 911 originally hit the market as a luxury sports car. Midway through 1963 the distinctive design now coveted worldwide, came to life via the collective hands of Ferdinand Alexander Porsche and Erwin Komenda. From a mechanical standpoint, the Porsche 911 was truly notable for being rear engine and air-cooled. The original Turbo 911s required that there was three feet within any corner of the design. Space for the brake, the clutch and space to feed the throttle. This has remained constant but new to this year is a fuel system overhaul which will pressurize the entire system. What you ask does this exactly mean? We had posed the same inquiry and what this really equates to is increased, fixed control and a faster response.

Mechanically the system will be able to maintain the throttle valve open during overrun. This is when fuel isn’t really necessary and the system will in turn use the [...]

We felt we needed to give the whole autonomous driving topic a rest for a while. Similar to Tesla, it’s everywhere, and frankly there are other topics worth touching on as well. But we did find the following interesting more from a psychological standpoint rather than the nuts and bolts behind autonomous driving.

So if we all in agreement that autonomous driving is literally upon us, which car owners (brand owners) do you think are most ready to be driven in an autonomous car? MaritzCX, a customer experience consultant wondered the same, and surveyed 12,353 car owners on their thoughts. Not quite an overwhelming amount, but 27 percent of Mercedes and Infiniti owners indicated they were “very interested” in purchasing a self-driving car once available.

Now again, 27 percent isn’t a resounding yes by any standpoint. But it was more than any other brand with Jeep and Ram owners showing the least interest in purchasing [...]

Volvo, the Swedish automaker, has a long, long manufacturing history, dating all the way back to 1927. Yet, when one really keys in on when the “good looks” creative forces came on board, it wasn’t until the late 1950s that snappy offerings like the Amazon for example hit the streets.

Fast forward to the present and the Amazon is celebrating its 60th birthday. Without a doubt for many of our readers this is the first time you are linking the words Amazon and Volvo in the same sentence. Outside of the extensive R&D center Volvo has in operation in the Brazilian jungle (we kid) the Amazon and Sweden rarely share the same page. The Volvo Amazon was first revealed in September of 1956, designed by a 26 year-old designer by the name of Jan Wilsgaard. Mr. Wilsgaard went on to bigger and better things when he spearheaded the design of the 140, 240, 700 and [...]

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