It’s 5 a.m. in South Korea and we slip downstairs in the dark from our motel room in Uljin to the underground parking garage. We point the key fob into the blackness and a car’s soft interior lighting illuminates a sumptuous leather cabin. Headlights cast a glow, highlighting aggressive character lines that cut across purposeful bodywork.
We’re drooling over a Hyundai, for heaven’s sake. It’s the 2010 Hyundai Genesis Coupe. We load the gear into the surprisingly accommodating trunk, slip into the chilly cockpit and press the starter button. We’re looking forward to this. Really looking forward to it.
In 10 minutes time, we’ll be carving a piece of Korean blacktop that’s every bit as epic as the very best roads in the world. It’s the Bulryeong Valley, an amazing route that starts on Korea’s picturesque east coast and reaches into the country’s mountainous heart.
It’ll be a real test, a mustard-cutting exercise for the 2010 Hyundai Genesis Coupe that will prove whether the Koreans can make a genuine world-class sport coupe.
This is the 2010 Genesis Coupe, the two-door version of the rear-wheel-drive car that has won Hyundai grudging respect at last from the world’s luxury carmakers. At its core, this top-line Genesis SE coupe is powered by Hyundai’s 32-valve, 3.8-liter Lambda V6, which produces 299 horsepower at 6,300 rpm and delivers 266 pound-feet of torque at 4,700 rpm. A ZF-built 6HP26 six-speed transmission sends the power to the rear wheels.
This car looks substantial in person, measuring 182.3 inches long, 73.4 inches wide and 54.3 inches tall. The wheelbase is commensurately long at 111 inches. The suspension setup includes MacPherson struts up front, while a five-link independent arrangement controls the rear wheels. If the V6 is in place, the Genesis coupe weighs in at 3,549 pounds; if the turbocharged, intercooled, 212-hp 2.0-liter inline-4 is doing business under the hood, the car weighs 3,439 pounds.
There are three trim levels: entry-level GS with turbo inline-4; the GT with the V6; and the high-performance SE with a sport-tuned suspension, Brembo brakes and 19-inch tires matched to either the four- or six-cylinder.
We turn off Highway 5, burble through still-sleeping villages, then start to climb into the hills that tower above. The road to Yeongju is smooth, fairly wide and bordered by guardrails and catch fencing. Sweeping corners outnumber straights 10 to one. It’s like we’ve found our own private racetrack.
Even in this demanding environment, the 2010 Hyundai Genesis Coupe still delivers. It grips so hard at the front that you wonder if there is actually a Korean word for understeer, then encourages you to get on the gas early and put all 299 hp to use at the rear. Again there’s grip from the 19-inch rear tires, yet there’s a lightness and deft poise that makes for an immensely satisfying and extremely manageable flow from one apex to the next.
The SE package’s big brakes never lose their bite, thanks to 13.4-inch rotors in front and 13-inch rotors in the rear, both with four-piston Brembo calipers. Meanwhile, the V6’s large reserve of torque is always on hand to haul you fuss-free from tight turns. Then it hits me. The 2010 Genesis Coupe feels exactly like the Infiniti G37 — the hollow warble of the V6, the chassis balance, and the light and linear steering. We have never driven one car that feels so much like another. And to think it used to be the Japanese who imitated the Americans and Europeans.
Two days earlier we were sitting in the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Seoul, listening to Western businessmen discuss deals with their Korean counterparts while looking out at a parking drive marked by Mercedes-Benz SLs and the odd Porsche 911 GT3. Out of the window, this city of 10 million bathes in misty smog, and a tangle of traffic jostles into the distance. Such a familiar view doesn’t seem to promise the new driving experiences and taste of a foreign culture that brought us to Korea.
As we set off into traffic in the 2010 Hyundai Genesis Coupe, we remember the advice of our Korean guidebooks, with the usual limp-wristed attitude of “driving in Seoul is crazy, man; take the bus.” But the signs have English translations and it’s not so bad as long as you have a basic idea of where you’re heading and aren’t expecting everyone to conduct themselves as if they’re in a driver training video. Koreans are aggressive, but there’s also an acceptance that you’ll be aggressive, too.
Outpunching the Nissan VQ V6?
It’s surely no coincidence that this 3,778cc V6 outpunches the Nissan VQ V6 by about 100cc. We’re slightly perturbed to see we’ve landed the six-speed automatic instead of the standard six-speed manual, but the six-speed slusher is a blessing in traffic — smooth, fairly quick and hassle-free. The lack of shifter paddles on the steering wheel feels odd in a car so sporting, though. At least Sport mode holds the gear to the engine’s redline and asks that you press the accelerator farther before it will kick down a gear.
We stick on Highway 4 and make for Hongcheon, impressed by the quality of the roads and amazed by how much of the Korean GDP must be spent on bridge-building projects. Some 70 percent of the country is mountainous, so there’s a lot of fresh air to span. But it’s taking a long time to get anywhere at the mandatory speed limit of 80 km/h (50 mph). At first we toe the line, perturbed by how few Korean drivers are willing to exceed the speed limit as well as by ubiquitous photo radar installations. But since there’s zero police presence and the speed cameras are easy to spot, we settle in to a more reasonable 160 km/h (100 mph).
Even at this pace there’s barely any wind noise in the Genesis coupe and tire noise is well suppressed except on the kind of concrete-paved sections you get on U.S. freeways. It’s a nice cruiser, and a nice place to be. Even the soft-touch dash plastics exude quality — though the indicator stalks and charmless center console let the side down.
On the outskirts of Hongcheon the roadsides become a chaotic mix of LPG stations, single-story dwellings with tatty breezeblock walls and lunchtime eateries. A wide, slow-flowing river cuts through town and fishermen crouch peacefully at its sandy banks. But, like all the Korean towns we see, Hongcheon feels bland and reconstructed post-Korean War with too much haste and too little thought to the people who live there. So we push on through the Taebaek mountain range in search of Seoraksan National Park.
We hoped the road across Seoraksan’s craggy granite hillsides and densely forested slopes would make for a spectacular drive. And it does, only it’s a 30-mph drive. This is a key tourist destination and since there’s pretty much just one road that everyone uses, it’s packed on a Friday. Overtaking is forbidden, so we sit it out with the tourists and admire the fall-season trees with their golden yellows and rust-colored reds and deep greens.
Our enforced amble does highlight a flaw, because the 2010 Hyundai Genesis Coupe rides badly, as its damping lacks the supple polish of the best all-around sporting coupes. Probably the SE package’s front 225/40R19 and rear 245/40R19 Hankook tires don’t help. The trick for Hyundai would be in maintaining the excellence of the handling, while underpinning it with more comfort. Perhaps a trip to Lotus Engineering, a longtime collaborator with Hyundai for suspension calibration in the past, would be in order.
On Saturday morning, we point the Hyundai toward the border with North Korea and away from the tourist buses that relentlessly stream into the park. So far the tension between North and South Korea has seemed pretty distant, but the standoff starts to feel very real indeed as we run along the east coast. Beautiful beaches and calm waters lie entirely empty, an uninterrupted length of fencing topped with razor wire preventing any access to anyone. Fencing and military lookout points ensure tourists go no farther, and even a river inlet is fenced end-to-end to its deepest depths.
Then a few kilometers away from the demilitarized zone (DMZ) that separates the two countries, things start to get really strange. A man with a pink baton waves us into a parking lot and we’re asked to buy a ticket. They’ve turned the DMZ into a tourist attraction! There’s popcorn and slush-puppy drinks and the kind of tourist crap you’d get at Coney Island (if it hadn’t been torn down recently, that is). At a lookout point, a line of 30 or so coin-operated telescopes are trained toward the North under a tattered awning sponsored by Fuji Film. This is a very strange vibe indeed.
The Modern Korean Car
The Koreans have had to work damn hard to rebuild their country from the ashes of war. The work ethic continues to this day. As one English executive on assignment here tells us, “If they need to do a job, they’ll work 18-hour days until it’s done.”
Fifty years on and the hard graft is paying off. Hyundai together with Kia represents the world’s fifth-largest car manufacturer with a 70 percent share of its domestic market and growing respect in Europe. And today, with the 2010 Hyundai Genesis Coupe, the company has built a truly world-class product.
Portions of this content have appeared in foreign print media and are reproduced with permission.
Toyo has tapped a handful of tuners to produce six SEMA creations to highlight its range of track-ready and dirt-friendly tires. Unfortunately, we’ve already seen the 800 hp, Bentley Continental-based Tetsu GTR, but joining that rolling abomination to tasteless consumption are a handful of rides that better represent what SEMA is all about.
To begin with, Bulletproof Automotive is trotting out a customer-owned Nissan GT-R, wearing limited edition (and GT-R specific) BBS LM-DBK-P wheels wrapped in Toyo’s 20-inch Proxes R888 tires. An Amuse Super Tough Titanium exhaust, Endless monoblock six-piston front and rear brakes and a smattering of carbon fiber aerodynamic parts round out this track- and show-friendly package.
Vivid Racing will be joined by several other firms bringing tuned Mitsubishi Evolution Xs to the show, but Vivid should stand out with its Porsche GT3 RS paint job, 18×10-inch AME Tracer 02 wheels and 650 hp on tap. We’ll be on hand in a few weeks to find out how Vivid went about freeing those extra 350 ponies.
Additionally, an unnamed sixth vehicle will be accompanied by a 2009 Toyota Tundra CrewMax SR5 built by Two Brothers Custom Trucks, along with Choppin’ Block Custom Fab’s four-door 1931 Studebaker Model 54, riding on a custom air suspension, Centerline Smoothie wheels and powered by a Chevy 350 fed by a trio of two-barrel carburetors.
Hit the jump for all the details and stay tuned for our SEMA coverage beginning the first week of November.
Read more on Autoblog
There’s no getting around it:
We live in a tough new world of $4 per gallon gasoline, and a U.S. economy that has its share of difficulties — with no signs of relief coming anytime soon. But enthusiasts still need to have fun, right? Right! Luckily, small turbocharged engines make sense, as they offer decent fuel economy when driven like Grandma — the Chevrolet Cobalt SS, for example, gets an EPA-rated 30 mpg on the highway — along with kick-in-the-pants acceleration that’ll make Prius owners “green” with envy when you get playful with that right-most pedal. Add in that all four cars here start at under $27,000, and you can see we just might be on to something.
For those of you keeping score at Road & Track, it has been Mazdaspeed3: two; and the Mazdaspeed3’s competition: zero. In the two previous comparison tests in which it took part, the Mazdaspeed3 unleashed its special brand of punishment, first on the Honda Civic Si, Mini Cooper S, Nissan Sentra SE-R Spec V and Volkswagen GTI in our June 2007 issue, and more recently on the Dodge Caliber SRT4 in the February 2008 issue.
So here’s the question: Can the Chevrolet Cobalt SS, Mitsubishi Lancer Ralliart or Subaru Impreza WRX dethrone the mighty Mazdaspeed3 as the King of the Sport Compacts?
Read the full article on RoadandTrack.com
Carbon Fiber Koenigsegg CCX-R Edition
1,575,000 Euro’s($2.3million USD)
Power 1018 bhp / 759 KW @ 7200 rpm
Torque 1060 Nm / 782 ft lbs @ 6100 rpm
BHP/Liter 204 bhp / liter
Power to weight 0.8 bhp / kg
Top Speed 417 km/h / 259 mph
0-60 mph 2.8 s
1. Not Using The Parking Brake
It’s a little pedal near your left leg, or a lever on your right. Yes, that mysterious device that you’ve never used is actually valuable. When you park on an incline, or even on fairly steady ground, without using the parking brake, you’re putting all of the stress of the car on your transmission. The only thing inside that transmission holding your car steady is a little pin called a parking pawl. By using the parking brake, you lock up the non-drive wheels as well as the drive wheels and take the stress off of the transmission. It’ll add years of life to your cars transmission.
2. Not Coming To A Complete Stop Before Shifting
So you’re in a rush, and you pull out of a parking space and shift into drive while the car is still coasting backwards. You’ve just added months of wear to your transmission in seconds. Inside your transmission is a complex set of gears, when you shift without stopping like that, you’re asking those gears to work as your brakes, which puts an amazing amount of stress on such a small area. You can also damage your drive shafts, the things that send power to the wheels, by shifting that way. After a while, it’ll lead to sloppy suspension handling, and a worn out transmission.
3. Riding The Brakes Down A Hill
If you are driving on a hill that goes on for a while, you’ll want to avoid riding the brake the whole time. Alternate between braking and letting off the brake so you don’t heat up and wear out your brake pads. It’s a common mistake, because it feels like the safest way to maneuver down a hill, but if the hill is sufficiently long, you can end up almost totally wearing out your pads, since as they heat up, the wear faster.
4. Forgetting To Change The Oil
You need to change your oil every 5,000 miles at the most. That’s really all there is to it. I actually read a blog online that said you can wait until your oil light comes on to change your oil. I’ve worked in the automotive business… by the time your oil light comes on, the oil inside your engine has turned into jet black molasses and is of no use to your engine. In the short term, I suppose it’s not that important, but more frequent changes can actually double the life of your car and greatly increase its performance.
5. Pressure Washing The Engine
I can respect a persons desire to want a clean engine. It gets grimy under there and a guy with a pressure washer is a dangerous thing for grime, you want to point it at anything even slightly dirty. But a grimy engine that runs right is better than a clean engine that doesn’t. And if you spray a high powered jet of water around rubber seals and hoses and electrical bits, you’re bound to dislodge something important. A modern engine is a complex thing, all manner of sensors and wiring harnesses and components, and it’s no place for a jet of high pressure water. A regular garden hose is OK if you want to wash it down, just be careful with the high pressure business.
6. Starting Your Car The Wrong Way
It seems simple, but you can make a big difference by turning off your radio, wipers, climate control, all of those accessories, when you start the car. Most of the wear on the engine happens when you start the car, and by turning off those accessories, your engine doesn’t have to work as hard when starting.
Another thing people do is revving the engine in the winter. This actually doesn’t help “warm up” the car. Although it does technically make the engine hotter, it’s not the kind of “warming up” that you want. Revving your engine in the winter causes extreme temperature changes right away, which is actually the opposite of what you want. When you start the car, the oil hasn’t yet worked its way through the system, so the engine is working without lubricant. The right way to do it is just let the car sit and idle for about 30 seconds to a minute at the least.
7. Ignoring Your Car’s Sounds
Every sound your car makes means something, if you pay attention, your car can usually tell you exactly what needs fixing. Those squeaking brakes mean you need new pads, and if you ignore that sound, eventually you’ll hear scraping metal, which means you need new rotors, and if you ignore that, you’ll eventually hear the sound of your own scream as you lose your brakes completely and fly off a cliff in a spectacular fireball of death. It’s more common than you think. Listen to your car.
8. Letting The Interior Go
You’re in a rush again, and you eat most of your disgusting egg and cheese bagel, and toss the rest in the wrapper on the passenger seat. Lovely. You know who you are, you’re car is filthy, never been vacuumed, 15 air fresheners hang on the mirror, and yet, no air freshener made by mortal man can stop the sickening wind within your car. You need to clean it. If you don’t vacuum your carpets and clean out the garbage every so often, you’ll develop a smell that is impossible to destroy. I’ve worked in the auto salvage business, and I know that there exist smells that are so obscene, so inhuman, that no shampoo can vanquish them. The only way to stop them is to never let them develop. Clean your car, for the sake of all mankind.
9. Running Your Car Down To Empty
There’s actually a bit of a debate about this one. The old wisdom says if your car gets down to E, the sediment in your tank will get sucked into the system and foul your fuel injectors. Although some mechanics says thats not true. Either way, running down to E does pose other problems. You cut the life of the fuel pump considerably, since the fuel actually cools the pump.
An interesting note: Most cars can drive another 60 miles+ after they hit Empty, automakers call this extra gas the “buffer zone”. US cars have the largest “buffer zone” of any vehicles. German drivers, for instance, like to know exactly how much gas in is the car, so they’re “buffer zone” between the gauge’s E and the actual empty tank is much smaller.
10. Driving Past Attractive Women
This is a common mistake, especially among younger male drivers. Attractive women can be incredibly damaging to your vehicle, they can cause the driver to install bizarre over-sized woofers or 22 inch rims, or even spontaneously crash the car into a nearby tree or telephone pole. When you’re driving, be careful to avoid swimming pools, beaches, college campuses, anyplace where beautiful girls assemble in any significant numbers. Your car will thank you.
Referenced from RideLust.com
BMW has unveiled their Active Hybrid Concept based on the new BMW 7 Series. The Hybrid model is set to debut at the Paris Auto Show later next month.
The BMW 7 Series Hybrid uses a twin-turbo 4.4-litre V8 petrol engine that delivers 407 horsepower and 442lb ft, working in combination with an AC electric motor that can add another 20 horserpower and 155lb ft of torque. In mild hybrid form, the result is 15 percent less fuel consumption and emissions (in the EU test cycle) versus a combustion engine only equivalent.
The 7 Series Hybrid comes as a response to Mercedes-Benz’s S400 Bluetec Hybrid that was unveiled last year at the L.A Show.
To improve even more the fuel efficiency, the start/stop technology and the part-time alternator have been implemented in the Hybrid version as well.
No further details have been released at this point, but we do expect to hear more at the Paris Auto Show.
Found on bmwblog.
September 29, 2008
ONTARIO– Nearly 200 people were cited and at least three arrested during a bust at an illegal street race near Ontario International Airport early Sunday morning.
Two drivers and a “flagger,” who signals the start of the race, were arrested and booked on misdemeanor charges, given citations and released, according to the Ontario Police Department.
Officers also picked up 184 spectators who were lining the streets to watch the race. They were cited for watching an illegal activity. Forty-seven of the spectators are juveniles, who were also cited for violating the city’s 10 p.m. curfew.
Officers said several of the cars belonging to spectators had been illegally modified for street racing. More than 70 cars have been impounded.
More than 100 officers from 12 agencies, including the Ontario police department, the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department, Riverside Police Department and California Highway Patrol were involved in the arrests, which took place at 12:45 a.m. on Airport Drive west of Etiwanda Avenue. The officers were part of a task force targeting street racing in different cities.
The location of the race is a long, straight industrial stretch of Airport Drive with a sharp curve at the end, with very little traffic during the weekend, according to officials. There have been racing related crashes at this same location in the past, authorities say.
The two drivers and flagger are Andrew Douglas Verdugo, 19, of Fontana, Miguel Angel Sanchez,26, of San Bernardino, and Ivan Edgar Aguayo, 23, of Rancho Cucamonga. All three face the same misdemeanor charges of illegal speed contest.
Article can be found at: kta.com
It all started with “Gotta see Uni-Cow”. Which led the Slayers to a trip out to the Big E, in W. Springfield, MA. Most of the Slayers spent the day eating: Seafood Platters, Stuffed Clams, Deep Fried Clams, Del’s Lemonade, Fresh Donuts, Fried Cheese Curds, Corn Dogs, Oversized Turkey Legs, Deep Fried Cheesecake, Curly Fries, Cream Puffs, Lobster Bisque, Lobster Rolls, Fried Dough, Kettle Corn, and many other extremely Slayer Fat Foods.
Two things that really caught our attention: Elephant riding an Elephant and Ninja Stuntn’ Sea Lions. There were many more attractions such as the ‘As Seen On TV” show and the “GOLIATH” aka Epic Godzilla Horse.
After slayn’ our wallets at the fair, we went out to Tokyo Cuisine for dinner. MORE SEAFOOD. Which in one way or another led to watching naked midgets on TV at Slaya Gqong/JennieZ crib.
Click on the Thumbnail to check out the pictures