This week’s roundup includes plenty of high-horse machinery to satisfy the hard-core gearhead, as well as some lighter fare good for a chuckle or two. A vintage grudge match between Chevy and Dodge on Roadkill brings some traditional musclecar action. Next up is a supercar shootout brought to you by the chaps at Evo, and Carlos Lago flogs the 850-hp Shelby Super Snake to see if 188 hp is worth another $40,000 over your garden-variety Shelby GT500. Finally, the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray is driven by Justin Bell on the latest episode of World’s Fastest Car.
The Chevrolet Corvette symbolizes many different things for many different people. For some, it’s a triumphant accomplishment of American engineering creating a formidable performance machine that rivals the performance of European sports cars costing twice or three times as much. For others, it’s a symbol of aging boomers’ mid-life crises. Whatever you think of it, Justin Bell wanted to take a look at the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray on its objective merits.
Sometimes, you’re just lucky. And lady luck smiled on Michael Dee of Levittown, New York, not once, but twice recently. Unbeknownst to Dee, he was Toyota Motor Sales’ 50 Millionth U.S. customer. While casually enjoying a backyard barbecue, Dee was approached by Bill Fay, vice president of Toyota Motor Sales, with balloons, and the title to his recently-purchased 2013 Toyota Camry, announcing the company had paid off his car loan.
The minivan could be considered one of the most challenging vehicle types to market. It has neither the rugged allure of pickups or SUVs, nor the sexiness of luxury or sports cars. Its appeal is strictly utilitarian, and spots must appeal to buyers’ need for practicality and ease-of use. The 2014 Honda Odyssey does have a competitive over its rivals in having the only built-in vacuum in its class.
When it comes to luxury sport sedans, the German brands are the ones to beat. Japanese challengers like Lexus and Infiniti have been trying to do just that for the past decade or so, and their latest vehicles inch closer to that benchmark. To determine which is better, the 2014 Lexus IS 350 F Sport or 2014 Infiniti Q50 S, host Jonny Lieberman puts both to the test on this episode of Head 2 Head.
The first-generation Mazda MX-5 Miata debuted at the Chicago auto show in 1989. One year later, we named it Automobile of the Year. It immediately appealed to us. It had a very personal and connected feel that made it seem like an indulgence, but it didn’t cost Porsche money. One of deputy editor Joe DeMatio’s favorite memories is of driving a bright blue Mazda Miata from Ann Arbor to New York in the summer of 1990, top down all the way, blasting horrible ‘90s music for all to hear. The Mazda Miata awed us, our love affair began, and it continues to grow.
How well can a street car handle 850 hp? To find out, Motor Trend‘s Carlos Lago tests the 2013 Shelby GT500 Super Snake in this new Ignition video. Lago first heads to K&N Engineering to determine how much power the GT500 Super Snake really makes.
On this week’s episode of Roadkill, Freiburger and Finnegan decide to take two of Hot Rod’s project cars on a 1500-mile road trip from Los Angeles to a drag strip in Salt Lake City, Utah, via the Las Vegas Strip. Though in pristine condition compared to the cars Roadkill normally drives, Hot Rod’s 1970 Dodge Super Bee and “Crusher” 1967 Chevrolet Camaro certainly have some interesting challenges of their own.
A new video from Volvo hints that the Swedish company will use the Frankfurt Motor Show to introduce a new concept car. Although the teaser video shows only fleeting glimpses of the show car, it appears to be called the Volvo Concept C Coupe. In a voiceover, Volvo Car Group head of design Thomas Ingenlath promises that the company’s styling direction is taking a dramatic turn for the better. “Some people described Volvo’s design as vanilla. In other words, nice, but not iconic or cutting edge,” Ingenlath says. “Well, I can assure you that the vanilla days are over.”
That scientists are able to pack the computing ability of an early Cray super computer into a chip smaller than a fingernail is nothing short of a technological marvel. The same can be said when automakers leverage that ever-growing computational power to refine and improve the performance of a sports car. Launch control! Adaptive dampers! Super variable magic steering control! Superturboincabulator! Insert imaginative technical jargon term here!
The famous Kia hamsters have taken on a brand new look just like the redesigned 2014 Kia Soul in Kia’s latest ad campaign called “Totally Transformed.” Set to Lady Gaga’s new single, “Applause,” the clip alternates between shots of the hamsters breaking a sweat and a Kia designer preparing the new generation of the Kia Soul. The hamsters slowly begin to slim down, and the 2014 Soul likewise starts to take shape.