Chrysler Airflow

Saturday 4 February 2017
The Chrysler Airflow is a full-size car produced by Chrysler from 1934 to 1937. The Airflow was one of the first full-size American production car to use streamlining as a basis for building a sleeker automobile, one less susceptible to air resistance. Chrysler made a significant effort at a fundamental change in automotive design with the Chrysler Airflow, but it was ultimately a commercial failure.
Chrysler also marketed a companion model under the DeSoto brand, the DeSoto Airflow.
The basis for the Chrysler Airflow was rooted in Chrysler Engineering's Carl Breer's curiosity about how forms affected their movement through the environment. According to Chrysler, Breer's quest was started while watching geese travel through the air in a "V" flight pattern. Another source lists Breer as watching military planes on their practice maneuvers, while still other sources attach the genesis of the project to Breer's interest in lighter-than-air airships and how their shapes helped them move through the atmosphere.
Breer, along with fellow Chrysler engineers Fred Zeder and Owen Skelton, began a series of wind tunnel tests, with the cooperation of Orville Wright, to study which forms were the most efficient shape created by nature that could suit an automobile. Chrysler built a wind tunnel at the Highland Park site, and tested at least 50 scale models by April 1930. Their engineers found that then-current two-box automobile design was so aerodynamically inefficient, that it was actually more efficient turned around backwards. Applying what they had learned about shape, the engineers also began looking into ways that a car could be built, which also used monocoque (unibody) construction to both strengthen the construction (the strengthening was used in a publicity reel) of the car while reducing its overall drag, and thus increasing the power-to-drag ratio as the lighter, more streamlined body allowed air to flow around it instead of being caught through upright forms, such as radiator grilles, headlights and windshields.
Traditional automobiles of the day were the typical two-box design, with about 65% of the weight over the rear wheels. When loaded with passengers, the weight distribution tended to become further imbalanced, rising to 75% or more over the rear wheels, resulting in unsafe handling characteristics on slippery roads. Spring rates in the rear of traditional vehicles were, therefore, necessarily higher, and passengers were subjected to a harsher ride.
An innovative suspension system on the new Chrysler Airflow stemmed from the need for superior handling dynamics. The engine was moved forward over the front wheels compared with traditional automobiles of the time, and passengers were all moved forward so that rear seat passengers were seated within the wheelbase, rather than on top of the rear axle. The weight distribution had approximately 54% of the weight over the front wheels, which evened to near 50-50 with passengers, and resulted in more equal spring rates, better handling, and far superior ride quality.
Prior to the Airflow's debut, Chrysler did a publicity stunt in which they reversed the axles and steering gear, which allowed the car to be driven "backwards" throughout Detroit. The stunt caused a near panic, but the marketing department felt that this would send a hint that Chrysler was planning something big. The car that emerged was like no other American production car to date.
The Airflow, which was heavily influenced by streamlining design movement, was sleek and low compared to other cars on American roads. The car's grille work cascaded forward and downward forming a waterfall look where other makes featured fairly upright radiators. Headlights were semi-flush to areas immediate to the grille. The front fenders enclosed the running surface of the tire tread. In the rear, Airflows encased the rear wheels through the use of fender skirts.
Instead of a flat panel of glass, the windshield comprised two sheets of glass that formed a raked "vee" both side to side, and top to bottom. Passengers were carried in a full steel body (at a time when automakers like General Motors, Ford and even Chrysler itself continued to use wood structural framing members in their car bodies) that rested between the wheels instead of upon them. The front seat was wider than in other cars and the rear seat was deeper. Overall, the car possessed a better power-to-weight ratio, and its structural integrity was stronger than other like models of the day.
The car was introduced months (in January, 1934) before it was put in production, and production peaked at only 6,212 units in May 1934 — very late in the year and barely enough to give every dealer a single Chrysler Airflow. The factory had not accounted for significant manufacturing challenges and expense due to the unusual new Airflow design, which required an unprecedented number and variety of welding techniques. The early Airflows arriving at dealerships suffered from significant problems, mostly the result of faulty manufacturing. According to Fred Breer, son of Chrysler Engineer Carl Breer, the first 2,000 to 3,000 Airflows to leave the factory had major defects, including engines breaking loose from their mountings at 80 mph (130 km/h).






Technical data:
- engine: V8
- capacity: 5302 cc
- horsepower: 116 HP
- gearbox: 3+1
- top speed: 140 km/h

Chevrolet Corvette C2 Stingray

Thursday 2 February 2017
The Chevrolet Corvette (C2) (C2 for Second Generation), also known as the Corvette Sting Ray, is a sports car that was produced by Chevrolet for the 1963 to 1967 model years.
The 1963 Sting Ray production car's lineage can be traced to two separate GM projects: the Q-Corvette, and perhaps more directly, Mitchell's racing Sting Ray. The Q-Corvette, initiated in 1957, envisioned a smaller, more advanced Corvette as a coupe-only model, boasting a rear transaxle, independent rear suspension, and four-wheel disc brakes, with the rear brakes mounted inboard. Exterior styling was purposeful, with peaked fenders, a long nose, and a short, bobbed tail.
Meanwhile, Zora Arkus-Duntov and other GM engineers had become fascinated with mid and rear-engine designs. It was during the Corvair's development that Duntov took the mid/rear-engine layout to its limits in the CERV I concept. The Chevrolet Experimental Research Vehicle was a lightweight, open-wheel single-seat racer. A rear-engined Corvette was briefly considered during 1958-60, progressing as far as a full-scale mock-up designed around the Corvair's entire rear-mounted power package, including its complicated air-cooled flat-six as an alternative to the Corvette's usual water-cooled V-8. By the fall of 1959, elements of the Q-Corvette and the Sting Ray Special racer would be incorporated into experimental project XP-720, which was the design program that led directly to the production 1963 Corvette Sting Ray. The XP-720 sought to deliver improved passenger accommodation, more luggage space, and superior ride and handling over previous Corvettes.
While Duntov was developing an innovative new chassis for the 1963 Corvette, designers were adapting and refining the basic look of the racing Sting Ray for the production model. A fully functional space buck (a wooden mock-up created to work out interior dimensions) was completed by early 1960, production coupe styling was locked up for the most part by April, and the interior, instrument panel included was in place by November. Only in the fall of 1960 did the designers turn their creative attention to a new version of the traditional Corvette convertible and, still later, its detachable hardtop. For the first time in the Corvette's history, wind tunnel testing helped refine the final shape, as did practical matters like interior space, windshield curvatures, and tooling limitations. Both body styles were extensively evaluated as production-ready 3/8-scale models at the Caltech wind tunnel.
The vehicle's inner structure received as much attention as the aerodynamics of its exterior. Fiberglass outer panels were retained, but the Sting Ray emerged with nearly twice as much steel support in its central structure as the 1958-62 Corvette. The resulting extra weight was balanced by a reduction in fiberglass thickness, so the finished product actually weighed a bit less than the old roadster. Passenger room was as good as before despite the tighter wheelbase, and the reinforcing steel girder made the cockpit both stronger and safer.
The first-ever production Corvette coupe, a futuristic fastback, sported an unusual styling element for its time period - a divided rear window. The rear window's basic shape had been originally conceived by Bob McLean for the Q-model. The rest of the Sting Ray design was equally stunning. Quad headlamps were retained but newly hidden - the first American car so equipped since the 1942 DeSoto. The lamps were mounted in rotating sections that matched the sharp-edged front end with the "eyes" closed. The Corvette continued to use hidden headlamps until the C6 model debuted in 2005. Coupe doors were cut into the roof, which made entry/exit easier in such a low-slung closed car. Faux vents were located in the hood and on the coupe's rear pillars; functional ones had been intended but were cancelled due to cost considerations. The fastback design was later adopted by another GM car, the third-generation Buick Riviera that debuted in 1971, with the "Boattail" nickname applied to the larger Buick design.
The Sting Ray's interior carried a new interpretation of the twin-cowl Corvette dash motif used since 1958, It was also more practical, now incorporating a roomy glovebox, an improved heater, and the cowl-ventilation system. A full set of round gauges included a huge speedometer and tachometer. The control tower center console returned, somewhat slimmer but now containing the clock and a vertically situated radio. Luggage space was improved as well, though due to a lack of an external trunklid, cargo had to be loaded behind the seats. The spare tire was located at the rear in a drop-down fiberglass housing beneath the gas tank (which now held 20-US-gallon (76-litre; 17-imperial-gallon) instead of 16-US-gallon (61 l; 13 imp gal). The big, round deck emblem was newly hinged to double as a fuel-filler flap, replacing the previous left-flank door.
Though not as obvious as the car's radical styling, the new chassis was just as important to the Sting Ray's success. Maneuverability was improved thanks to the faster recirculating ball, or "Ball-Race", steering, and a shorter wheelbase. The latter might ordinarily imply a choppier ride, but the altered weight distribution partly compensated for it. Less weight on the front wheels also meant easier steering, and with some 80 additional pounds on the rear wheels, the Sting Ray offered improved traction. Stopping power improved, too. Four-wheel cast-iron 11-inch drum brakes remained standard but were now wider, for an increase in effective braking area. Sintered-metallic linings, segmented for cooling, were again optional. So were finned aluminum drums, which not only provided faster heat dissipation (and thus better fade resistance) but less unsprung weight. Power assist was available with both brake packages. Evolutionary engineering changes included positive crankcase ventilation, a smaller flywheel, and an aluminum clutch housing. A more efficient alternator replaced the old-fashioned generator.
The independent rear suspension Duntov created for Sting Ray was essentially a frame-mounted differential with U-jointed half-shafts tied together by a transverse leaf spring - a design derived from the CERV I concept. Rubber-cushioned struts carried the differential, which reduced ride harshness while improving tire adhesion, especially on rougher roads. The transverse spring was bolted to the rear of the differential case. A control arm extended laterally and slightly forward from each side of the case to a hub carrier, with a trailing radius rod mounted behind it. The half-shafts functioned like upper control arms. The lower arms controlled vertical wheel motion, while the trailing rods took care of fore/aft wheel motion and transferred braking torque to the frame. Shock absorbers were conventional twin-tube units. Considerably lighter than the old solid axle, the new rear suspension array delivered a significant reduction in unsprung weight, which was important since the 1963 model would retain the previous generation's outboard rear brakes. The new model's front suspension would be much as before, with unequal-length upper and lower A-arms on coil springs concentric with the shocks, plus a standard anti-roll bar. Steering remained the conventional recirculating-ball steering design, but it was geared at a higher 19.6:1 overall ratio (previously 21.0:1). Bolted to the frame rail at one end and to the relay rod at the other was a new hydraulic steering damper (essentially a shock absorber), which helped soak up bumps before they reached the steering wheel. What's more, hydraulically assisted steering would be offered as optional equipment for the first time on a Corvette - except on cars with the two most powerful engines -and offer a faster 17.1:1 ratio, which reduced lock-to-lock turns from 3.4 to just 2.9.
Drivetrains were carried over from the previous generation, comprising four 327 cu in (5,360 cc) small block V8s, three transmissions, and six axle ratios. Carbureted engines came in 250 hp (190 kW), 300 hp (220 kW), and 340-horsepower (250-kilowatt) versions. As before, the base and optional units employed hydraulic lifters, a mild camshaft, forged-steel crankshaft, 10.5:1 compression, single-point distributor, and dual exhausts. The 300-bhp engine produced its extra power via a larger four-barrel carburetor (Carter AFB instead of the 250's Carter WCFB), plus larger intake valves and exhaust manifold. Again topping the performance chart was a 360 hp (270 kW) fuel-injected V8, available for an extra $430.40. The car's standard transmission remained the familiar three-speed manual, though the preferred gearbox continued to be the Borg-Warner manual four-speed, changing over to the Muncie M20 during the 1963 model year, delivered with wide-ratio gears when teamed with the base and 300-bhp engines, and close-ratio gearing with the top two powerplants. Standard axle ratio for the three-speed manual or two-speed Powerglide automatic was 3.36:1. The four-speed gearbox came with a 3.70:1 final drive, but 3.08:1, 3.55:1, 4.11:1, and 4.56:1 gearsets were available. The last was quite rare in production, however.
Corvette's designers and engineers - Ed Cole, Zora Arkus-Duntov, Bill Mitchell, and others knew that after 10 years in its basic form, albeit much improved, it was time to move on. By decade's end, the machinery would be put into motion to fashion a fitting successor to debut for the 1963 model year. After years of tinkering with the basic package, Bill Mitchell and his crew would finally break the mold of Harley Earl's original design once and for all. He would dub the Corvette’s second generation "Sting Ray" after the earlier race car of the same name. The C2 was designed by Larry Shinoda under the direction of GM chief stylist Bill Mitchell. Inspiration was drawn from several sources: the contemporary Jaguar E-Type, one of which Mitchell owned and enjoyed driving frequently; the radical Sting Ray Racer Mitchell designed in 1959 as Chevrolet no longer participated in factory racing; and a Mako shark Mitchell caught while deep-sea fishing. Zora Arkus-Duntov ("father of the Corvette") disliked the split rear window (which also raised safety concerns due to reduced visibility) and it was discontinued in 1964, as were the fake hood vents.






Technical data:
- engine: V8
- capacity: 7000 cc
- horsepower: 390 HP
- gearbox: 4+1
- top speed: 220 km/h

Buick Special

Wednesday 1 February 2017
The Buick Special was an automobile produced by Buick. It was usually Buick's lowest-priced model, starting out as a full-size car in 1936 and returning in 1961 (after a two-year hiatus) as a mid-size.
By 1970, Special was no longer offered as a standalone model but the name would later be used for the entry trim on 1975 to 1979 and 1991 to 1996 Century models.
The entry level Buick can trace its heritage to the Buick Model 10, a companion to Buick's first car, the Buick Model B. The Model 10 started out as one of the independent brands merged into Buick, called the Janney.
From 1936 to 1958, Buick's Special model range represented the marque's entry level full-size automobile. The '36 was a very successful year for Buick and also marked the first time of using names rather than the simple serial numbers which had been in use before. The Special continued to also be known as the 40-series, however. The first Specials rode on a 118 in (3.0 m) wheelbase, but for the next model year this was increased to 122 in (3.10 m) as all Buicks grew for that year. The engine was also new, and was now of 248 cu in (4.1 L) rather than 233 cu in (3.8 L). The Special (and all other Buicks as well) underwent a full restyling for 1939, with a more enclosed nose and a wider grille. The wheelbase was also two inches shorter. For 1940, there was the usual restyle and the wheelbase increased by an inch. This was also the only model year that a four-door convertible Special ("Sport Phaeton") was offered, although only 552 were built.
For 1941 the bodywork was again all new, with the front fenders now very closely integrated into the cars overall design. The Estate Wagon migrated from being a Super into the Special lineup. Also new was the 40-A series (the regular Special now being the 40-B), a version on a three inches shorter wheelbase which shared its body with the 1941 Chevrolet. These two series, with a restyle reminiscent of the 1939 Y-Job, continued into the abbreviated 1942 model year. Production ended on 4 February 1942. For 1946 only the larger Special range remained available, still using the prewar B-body. The '46 Special is rare, representing less than 2% of Buick's production that year. The Special continued with minor changes until the prewar body was finally replaced halfway through the 1949 model year. Post-war Specials were only available as a four-door sedan or a two-door "sedanet", until the new 1949 models arrived.
In the movie Mildred Pierce, Veda Pierce, Mildred's daughter, played by actress Ann Blyth, was given a 1940 Buick Special convertible as a gift.
The movie Small Town Conspiracy features a 1939 Buick Special 8 that the main character of the film John Haleran (Zen Gesner) drives as his official police car. The car remained the property of director Ralph Clemente and was untouched for many years until sold to Florida restorer and car collector Axel Caravias.






Technical data:
- engine: V8
- capacity: 3654 cc
- horsepower: 93 HP
- gearbox: 3+1
- top speed: 129 km/h

Buick LeSabre Coupe

Sunday 29 January 2017
The Buick LeSabre is a full-size car made by General Motors from 1959-2005. For many years, the LeSabre was considered as a full-size car, carrying the lowest base price in the Buick lineup. Prior to 1959, this position had been retained by the full-size Buick Special model (1936–58); in 1959 the LeSabre replaced the Special, a nameplate that was reintroduced in 1961 for Buick's line of compact cars. The name originated with the 1951 GM Le Sabre show car designed by Harley Earl; that car is often mistakenly attributed to the Buick division, but in fact it was presented as a GM vehicle without reference to a specific GM division. Buick closely related their 1956-1957 models to the GM LeSabre by replicating the top section of the rear wing into their design. The word LeSabre is French for sabre.
Like the other GM divisions, Buick completely restyled its B- and C-body cars for 1971. The full-size cars emerged larger and heavier than before and also ever after. The styling featured curved bodysides, long hoods and wide expanses of glass, similar to that of Chrysler Corporation's 1969 full-sized cars, but with a lower beltline than the Chrysler products. Semi-fastback rooflines were utilized on two-door hardtop coupes and convertibles had a new top design to permit a full-width rear seat.
The same assortment of 350 and 455 cubic-inch V8s were carried over but featured lowered compression ratios and other modifications in order to enable the use of lower-octane low-lead or unleaded gasoline as a result of a General Motors corporate mandate. Variable-ratio power steering and power front disc brakes were made standard equipment on all LeSabres at the start of the 1971 model year. In March, the Turbo Hydramatic transmission became standard equipment, and all Buick LeSabres would remain so equipped in base form until the nameplate's final year in 2005.
The new body also featured a double shell roof for improved roll-over protection. Also new for '71 was a flow-through ventilation system utilizing vents mounted in the trunklid shared with other full-sized GM cars and the compact Chevrolet Vega. It used the heater fan to draw air into the car from the cowl intake, and force it out through vents in the trunk lid or tailgate. In theory, passengers could enjoy fresh air even when the car was moving slowly or stopped, as in heavy traffic. In practice, however, it didn't work.
However, within weeks of the 1971 models' debut, Buick and all other GM dealers received multiple complaints from drivers who complained that the ventilation system pulled cold air into the car before the heater could warm up and could not be turned off. The ventilation system was extensively modified for 1972.
Also new for the 1971 was an optional MaxTrac computerized traction control system.
Inside was a new wrap-around cockpit style instrument panel that placed all controls and instruments within easy reach of the driver, along with easier servicability with instruments and switches accessible from the front when the faceplate was removed. The seats of a new full-foam design with headrests more squared off than 1969-70. Again, base and Custom model LeSabres were offered in the same sedan and coupe bodystyles while the convertible was a Custom-only offering. The LeSabre 455 model line was dropped for 1971 with the larger engine now being offered as an option on the regular base and Custom-series models. LeSabre Customs equipped with the optional 455 engine got a "455" badge underneath the LeSabre nameplates on the front fenders instead of the "Custom" badge normally used.
A revised grille and taillights lenses were among the styling changes for 1972. Out back, a small "BUICK" nameplate was located above the right side taillight replacing the larger block letters spelling "B U I C K" across the lower trunk lid between the taillights in 1971. Also new for '72 was a larger 5-mph front bumper introduced a year ahead of a federal safety mandate requiring such bumpers in 1973.
Interior trims received only slight revisions from 1971. A revised flow-through ventilation system utilizing vents in the doorjambs replaced the troublesome system used in 1971 with the trunklid vents.
Both the 350 and 455 V8s were carried over from 1971 with horsepower ratings switched the new SAE net figures based on an engine as installed in an automobile with accessories and emission controls hooked up, rather than the gross horsepower method of past years based upon a dynamometer rating from an engine not installed in a vehicle. With that, the standard 350 two-barrel V8 was rated at 160 net horsepower compared to 230 gross horsepower in 1971 while the top 455 V8 was rated at 250 net horsepower in 1972 compared to 315 in 1971. Engines were also revised to meet the 1972 federal and California emission standards with California-bound cars receiving EGR valves, which would be installed on engines of virtually all automobiles for nationwide sales in 1973.
Inside, the instrument panel featured a new "FASTEN SEAT BELTS" light due to a new federal safety regulation and the buzzer which sounded when the key was left in the ignition also sounded upon starting the car to remind the driver and passengers to buckle up.
A larger federally mandated "5 mph" front bumper and new vertical bar grille highlighted the 1973 LeSabre along with revised taillights set in the somewhat larger rear bumper. Both the 350 and 455 V8s were revised with EGR valves used on both federal and California-emission equipped cars.
The LeSabre Custom convertible was dropped this year leaving the short-lived Centurion as Buick's only ragtop that year as the intermediate Skylark (replaced by the Century for 1973) lost its ragtop completely after the 1972 model year. The engine options continued largely unchanged.






Technical data:
- engine: V8
- capacity: 5700 cc
- horsepower: 180 HP
- gearbox: 4+1
- top speed: 180 km/h

Buick Electra Sedan

Saturday 28 January 2017
The Buick Electra is a full-size luxury car that was built by Buick from 1959 to 1990. Harlow H. Curtice, former president of the Buick division and later president of General Motors, named the car after his sister-in-law, Electra Waggoner Biggs.
During its more than 30-year run, Electra was offered in varying body styles including coupe, convertible, sedan, and station wagon. The Electra was replaced by the Buick Park Avenue in 1991.
GM downsized all C-body cars in 1977, including the Electra. It lost over 11 inches (279 mm) in length and quite a bit of weight too. The car was totally redesigned, but still offered base 225 and Limited trims, plus a top-line Park Avenue option package, which became available on the coupe. The console option in the Park Avenue was gone, never to return to the rear wheel drive Electra. The downsized model brought increased sales, with 161,627 Electras produced in 1977. Hardtops were no longer produced; all models now had thick "B" pillars.
The big-block 455 was gone forever. The base engine was now the Buick 350 with a 4-barrel carburetor until 1979. The Oldsmobile 403 was optional from 1977 to 1979. Oldsmobile's 350 diesel was added to the option list beginning in 1980, along with an Oldsmobile-sourced 307. The Buick 350 was now optional, with the base engine being the Buick 4.1 L V6 for improved fuel economy. In 1981, the then-optional Buick 350 was dropped. That same year, the Electra gained the new THM200-4R automatic transmission, which featured a lock-up torque converter and a 0.67:1 overdrive ratio. With the new transmission, the Electra could be equipped with a numerically higher rear axle ratio for better performance, while offering improved fuel economy with the overdrive range.
Park Avenue, previously an appearance option package, became an official trim level on the Electra in 1978. Cosmetically, a different grille and redesigned tail lights were the only notable cosmetic changes that year but 1979 brought a redesigned, flat front end and a subtly different taillight treatment featuring a Buick crest and bisecting horizontal silver line. It didn't last as the 1980 Electra went back to its earlier 1977 roots but with a new grille featuring vertical slats. Also in 1980, Buick completely dropped the "225" moniker leaving just Limited and Park Avenue trims.
For the first time since 1959, Electras didn't have four VentiPorts in 1981. The 1981 model saw very few changes from the 1980 restyle but it got a modified grille and new powertrains. The top-line Electra Park Avenue model continued to show 4 small depressions with stickers in the chrome moulding on its front fenders until they were completely gone in 1985. Production of the rear-wheel drive Electra ceased in April 1984. Technically this was the last year of the rear wheel drive C-body, as it was renamed the D-body and would continue on under the Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham, and later the 1987–92 Cadillac Brougham and finally the 1993–96 Cadillac Fleetwood. The next large rear wheel drive Buick sedan would be the 1992–96 Roadmaster, sharing the same B-body as the Chevrolet Caprice and GM's last full-size rear wheel drive station wagons.
The Buick Estate Wagon was also downsized for 1977. It had been a separate model in its own right since 1970, alternatively sharing chassis and styling with both the Electra and LeSabre. In stark contrast to 1975–76 when it shared Electra's 127.0-inch (3,230 mm) wheelbase and used LeSabre's front end styling, the new Estate Wagon shared LeSabre's B-body and used Electra's front-end styling. After the rear wheel drive Electra was discontinued, the Estate Wagon continued to be produced with the rear wheel drive Electra's front end fascia until 1990 when it was replaced by the Buick Roadmaster Estate.






Technical data:
- engine: V8
- capacity: 5000 cc
- horsepower: 180 HP
- gearbox: 4+1
- top speed: 180 km/h

Audi 200 Quattro

Friday 27 January 2017
The Audi 100 had an aerodynamic look, achieving a drag coefficient of 0.30 for its smoothest base model. The increased aerodynamic efficiency resulted in better fuel economy. The design was in contrast from the boxy shape of the C2. Audi innovated flush windows on the C3, a key area for aerodynamic drag that has been adopted by virtually all manufacturers today. The aerodynamic body gave the 100 higher top speed than other cars of similar engine size. A new technology introduced in the C3 included the procon-ten safety system.
The two-door models were no longer available, and the Audi 100 Avant was reintroduced as Audi's first attempt at a station wagon based on the 100. It was marketed as a lifestyle estate rather than a loadlugger, although an extra folding seat for two in the luggage compartment was an available option. This extra seat was not available in conjunction with ABS-brakes as the brake control unit sat in the same space. The 200, launched in 1983 continued as the upmarket variant with several versions of the 2.2 L turbo 5-cylinder available in different markets over its life ranging in power outputs from 165 PS (121 kW) MC engine, through the 200 PS (147 kW) versions to the final 220 PS (162 kW) 20-valve 3B engine available from 1991. The 1983 Audi 200 Turbo had a top speed of 139 mph (224 km/h). The MC turbo engine was available in the 100 as well for some markets.
The 1991 200 20V was distinguished by its flared front and rounded rear wheel arches instead of the flat type used for the rest of the 100-200 range, this allowed wider wheel and tire combinations to be fitted to 20V models. U.S. magazine articles of the period reported 0-60 times of the 20-valve Audi 200 under 7 seconds, with 1/4 mile times in the mid to upper 15 second mark.
The 100 also featured a 2.5 L straight-five direct injection turbo-diesel (TDI) model with 120 PS (88 kW) introduced in January 1990 (engine code 1T). A such-engined Audi 100 was the first model to wear the TDI label. It had a brief career in the C3, being replaced in December of that year when the C4 arrived.
During model years 1983–1987, Audi's U.S. sales fell after a series of recalls of Audi 5000 models associated with reported incidents of sudden unintended acceleration linked to six deaths and 700 accidents. At the time, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) was investigating 50 car models from 20 manufacturers for sudden surges of power.
In North America, the CBS television broadcast network 60 Minutes news program aired a report titled Out of Control on November 23, 1986. It featured interviews with six people who had sued Audi after reporting unintended acceleration, including footage of an Audi 5000 ostensibly displaying a surge of acceleration while the brake pedal was depressed. Subsequent investigation revealed that 60 Minutes had not disclosed they had engineered the vehicle's behavior – fitting a canister of compressed air on the passenger-side floor, to pump fluid via a hose to a hole drilled into the transmission — the arrangement executed by one of the experts who had testified on behalf of a plaintiff in a then-pending lawsuit against Audi's parent company.
Audi initially responded by suggesting that the drivers of the cars involved in the incidents were at fault, because they had stepped on the accelerator pedal rather than the brake. Subsequently, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) concluded that the majority of unintended acceleration cases, including all the ones that prompted the 60 Minutes report, were caused mainly by factors such as confusion of pedals. CBS acknowledged the report and stressed its findings that “the problem could be aggravated by vehicle design, the shape, location and feel of gas and brake pedals." Audi's research demonstrated that many of the drivers who encountered "unintended acceleration" were "below average in height", indicating their knowledge of a relationship between design and the incidents.
In a review study published in 2012, NHTSA summarized its past findings about the Audi unintended acceleration problems: "Once an unintended acceleration had begun, in the Audi 5000, due to a failure in the idle-stabilizer system (producing an initial acceleration of 0.3g), pedal misapplication resulting from panic, confusion, or unfamiliarity with the Audi 5000 contributed to the severity of the incident."
This summary is consistent with the conclusions of NHTSA's most technical analysis at the time: "Audi idle-stabilization systems were prone to defects which resulted in excessive idle speeds and brief unanticipated accelerations of up to 0.3g [which is similar in magnitude to an emergency stop in a subway car]. These accelerations could not be the sole cause of [(long-duration) sudden acceleration incidents (SAI)], but might have triggered some SAIs by startling the driver. The defective idle-stabilization system performed a type of electronic throttle control. Significantly: multiple "intermittent malfunctions of the electronic control unit were observed and recorded … and [were also observed and] reported by Transport Canada."
With the series of recall campaigns, Audi made several modifications; the first adjusted the distance between the brake and accelerator pedal on automatic-transmission models. Later repairs of 250,000 cars dating back to 1978 added a device requiring the driver to press the brake pedal before shifting out of park. It is unclear what was done regarding the defects in the idle-stabilization system. Subsequent to the recall campaigns, vehicles now include gear shift patterns and brake interlock mechanisms to prevent deliberate gear selection.
Audi's U.S. sales, which had reached 74,061 in 1985, dropped to 12,283 in 1991 and remained level for three years. – with resale values falling dramatically. Audi subsequently offered increased warranty protection and renamed the affected models — with the 5000 becoming the 100 and 200 in 1989. The company only reached the same level of U.S. sales again by model year 2000.
As of early 2010, a class-action lawsuit — dealing with a charge that on account of the sudden acceleration controversy, Audi models had lost resale value — filed in 1987 by about 7,500 Audi Audi 5000-model owners remains unsettled and is currently contested in county court in Chicago after appeals at the Illinois state and U.S. federal levels. The NHTSA's findings have been "small solace for Audi in defense of product liability actions, as more and more successful cases used Audi's human factor design errors and failure to warn or recall as a basis for liability."






Technical data:
- engine: 5 cylinders
- capacity: 2200 cc
- horsepower: 217 HP
- gearbox: 5+1
- top speed: 230 km/h

Mercedes Benz Ghia 300C

Thursday 14 July 2016
What a car. What a model. Unfortunately not too much information on it is available in English. If you have any, please share.

Technical data:
- engine: V6
- capacity: 2996 cc
- horsepower: 150 HP
- gearbox: 4+1
- top speed: 140 km/h

Chevrolet Malibu

Wednesday 13 July 2015
The Chevrolet Malibu is a mid-size car manufactured and marketed by Chevrolet from 1964 to 1983 and since 1997. The Malibu began as a trim-level of the Chevrolet Chevelle, becoming its own model line in 1978. Originally a rear-wheel-drive intermediate, GM revived the Malibu nameplate as a front-wheel-drive car in 1997.
Named after the city of Malibu, California, the Malibu was marketed primarily in North America, with the eighth generation introduced globally.
The most extensive redesign in its 10-year history marked the 1973 Chevelle, eliminating convertible models due to concern over proposed Federal rollover standards. This move was somewhat controversial with the buying public as soft-tops had been a staple of American cars for over 20 years and their presence almost taken for granted. Once the initial surprise was overcome however, the Colonnade models became a huge sales success. The Monte Carlo coupe was the biggest seller of the Chevrolet A-body line, although the bread-and-butter sedans and station wagons also sold well. The newly named "Colonnade Hardtop" featured a semi-fastback roofline, frameless door glass and fixed, styled "B" pillars, structurally strong enough to contribute to occupant safety of a roll-over type accident. Distinctive rear quarter glass on 2-door coupes and new side windows with styled center pillars were featured on 4-door models. Rear windows on coupes no longer opened. In addition to the new roofline, front and rear ends looked markedly different this year as 1973 was the year of the federally mandated 5 mph (8.0 km/h) front bumper, adding to the car's length. Additional new body features were an acoustical double-panel roof, tighter-fitting glass and flush style outside door handles. Wheelbase dimensions were retained; a sporty 112 inches (2,800 mm) for coupes and 116 inches (2,900 mm) for sedans and station wagons, but bodies were five inches (127 mm) longer and an inch wider with a 1-inch (25 mm) wider wheel track. The station wagon, available in 6 or 9 passenger seating, featured a new counterbalanced liftgate which allowed for easier entry and loading up to 85 cubic feet.
1973 models also introduced molded full foam front and rear seat construction, a flow-through power ventilation system, an inside hood release, refined Delcotron generator and sealed side-terminal battery, a larger 22 gallon fuel tank, and "flush and dry" rocker panels introduced first on the redesigned 1971 full-size Chevrolets. Another structural improvement was a stronger design for the side door guard beams. New options included swivel bucket seats (with console) for coupes and Turbine I urethane (backed by steel) wheels, as was the instrument gauge cluster. A power moonroof was an option 1973-75. Interior roominess of the '73 Chevelle was improved, particularly in the rear. Headroom was up slightly and shoulder room gains were by 1.6 inches (41 mm). Rear seat legroom was up 3.5 inches (89 mm) in sedans. Another was a 15.3-cubic-foot (430 L) luggage capacity, an increase of 2.5 cubic feet (71 L) over 1972 models. Still another benefit of the new body designs was greatly improved visibility, up 25% in coupes and wagons, and 35% in sedans. The unusually thin windshield pillars also contributed to much better visibility.
Malibu and the newly named Deluxe series base model featured the new 5 mph (8.0 km/h) bumper system with a large chrome front bumper and a chrome rear bumper. Malibu series interiors included cloth and vinyl or all vinyl seat trim and deep-twist carpeting. Deluxe series interiors featured cloth and vinyl or knit vinyl seat trim. Floor coverings were color-keyed in vinyl-coated rubber. The SS was now a trim option limited to the mid-level Malibu series. Shoppers could even get an SS station wagon this year - with the option of a 454-cubic-inch V8 engine, no less—but the mix of sport and utilitarian wagon virtues would last only a single season. Included was a black grill with SS emblem, lower bodyside and wheel opening striping, bright roof drip moldings, color-keyed dual sport mirrors, black taillight bezels, SS fender and rear panel emblems, special front and rear stabilizer bars, 14x7 inch rally wheels, 70-series raised white lettered tires, special instrumentation and SS interior emblems. The SS option required an available 350 or 454 V8 with 4-speed or Turbo Hydra-Matic transmission.
Chevrolet honored California beach resorts once again by naming the top Chevelle series Laguna with the Malibu taking the middle spot while the base series was called simply Deluxe. In addition to the standard 350 2 barrel V8, Laguna models featured specific front and rear styling including a body-colored urethane front end concealing the new 5 mph bumper system. On minor impact the urethane nose cone, backed up by shock- absorbing cylinders, deflects and rebounds; Laguna models also featured a specific diecast chrome grille with bowtie emblem, a body-colored (steel) rear bumper, front and rear bumper rub strips, bright roof drip moldings, bright wheel opening moldings, chrome taillight bezels, full wheel covers, and Laguna fender nameplates. Two Laguna station wagons were introduced, including a Laguna Estate. Laguna interiors were pattern cloth and vinyl or optional breathable all-vinyl upholstery, distinctive door trim with map pockets, deep-twist carpeting, woodgrain vinyl accents, and Laguna nameplates.
Chevelle sales remained strong: 327,631 of them in the 1973 model year, plus 59,108 station wagons. The more upmarket Malibu continued to sell best by a wide margin and many Chevelles went to the fleet market, but the costlier Laguna coupe and sedan made a respectable showing, with 56,036 going to customers. Super Sport options went on 28,647 Chevelles of which 2500 held the big 454-cubic-inch engine. The SS option was dropped at the end of the model year.

Technical data:
- engine: V8
- capacity: 5700 cc
- horsepower: 175 HP
- gearbox: 3+1
- top speed: 180 km/h

Opel Campo

Monday 11 July 2016
Opel Campo also known as the Isuzu Faster is a pick-up truck that was manufactured and marketed by Isuzu between 1972 and 2002 over three generations. The Faster was succeeded worldwide by Isuzu D-Max worldwide, except in North America.
For the third generation (TF), introduced in 1988, the domestic Japanese lineup was divided into two, with the "Faster" label used on rear-wheel drive versions with four-wheel drives now sold as the Isuzu Rodeo. Rodeo became the name used in most markets for this car, but the profusion of labels for different markets continued. Versions sold in the Americas were called Isuzu Pickup and Chevrolet LUV. In the United Kingdom, the pickup was called Isuzu TF and Vauxhall Brava, with the former also retailing in mainland Europe along with the Opel Campo. This Opel branding was also utilized in the Middle East, parts of North Africa and some Asian countries.
Holden Rodeo was the only name used in Australasia, with the Isuzu KB name used in South Africa and some other markets. The names Isuzu Faster-Z, Isuzu TFR, and Honda Tourmaster were used in Thailand. A Thai-market SUV based on the TF was sold as the Thairung Adventure, produced in semi-knocked-down by Thai Rung Union Car. Names used in other markets include: Chevrolet T-Series (Egypt), Isuzu Ippon (Israel), Isuzu Fuego (Philippines), and as the Isuzu Invader in the north-eastern parts of Malaysia (Sabah). License built copies have been sold as the Jinbei SY10 series, Foton Aoling T-Series in China, where the car has served as a basis for innumerable local copies, authorized and unauthorized.
In Japan, two-wheel drive versions were called "Isuzu Faster", with the "Rodeo" name reserved for four-wheel drive units. In 1992, an updated version of the 4JB1 2.8-litre turbodiesel with direct injection was introduced; while the original 2.8 has 100 PS (74 kW), the direct-injected version offered 110 PS (81 kW) at 3,600 rpm and 23.0 kg·m (226 N·m; 166 lb·ft) of torque at 2,300 rpm. Japanese sales ended in 1994 without replacement, although export markets continued to receive the vehicle until replaced by the D-Max from 2002.
The TF series received a facelift in 1997. Styling was changed, with a more rounded look at the front, and a new-look dash similar to that used in the 1995 to 1997 model Isuzu Wizard.
In Europe the Isuzu was sold as the TF alongside the rebadged "Opel Campo". In the United Kingdom "Vauxhall Brava" badging was used rather than Opel. These received the same updates as did the Isuzu TF in general markets, and a variety of bodystyles were available, usually coupled with diesel engines.

Technical data:
- engine: 4 cylinders
- capacity: 2200 cc
- horsepower: 115 HP
- gearbox: 5+1
- top speed: 150 km/h