Archives for : March2016

A Plethora of Jeep Concepts for the Easter Jeep Safari

The Easter Jeep Safari is an event consisting of day-long trail rides, departing from Moab, Utah, throughout the nine-day-long event. The Jeep Safari was started in 1967 by the Moab Chamber of Commerce as a one-day trail ride. Over the years, as participation grew, the Safari expanded until it finally reached the current nine-day event. “Big Saturday” still remains the culmination of the event on the Saturday of Easter weekend. This year Jeep bring several in-house projects to the event to push the brand and show off their after-market range.

 

Seven new, ultra-capable Jeep® concept vehicles – featuring an array of Mopar and Jeep Performance Parts available to consumers – will conquer the famous and challenging trails of Moab, Utah, at Easter Jeep Safari, March 19-27. Thousands of off-road enthusiasts are expected to descend upon Moab this year to celebrate what will likely be the most popular Jeep Safari ever, as the 50th annual event coincides with the 75th anniversary of the Jeep brand.

“Every year the Jeep team looks forward to pushing the limits with new, exciting and capable concept vehicles for our most loyal enthusiasts at the Easter Jeep Safari in Moab, where we receive a tremendous amount of valuable feedback,” said Mike Manley, Head of Jeep Brand – FCA Global. “This year is extra special, as together with our biggest fans, we celebrate Jeep’s 75th anniversary – as well as the 50th running of the Jeep Safari. We’re delighted to share seven of the most capable and eye-catching concept Jeep vehicles we’ve ever created at this year’s historic event.”

The 2016 crop of Easter Jeep Safari concept vehicles utilises both production and prototype Jeep Performance Parts. The Mopar brand is responsible for developing, building and ensuring that all Jeep Performance Parts meet rigorous specifications and with 4×4 capabilities in mind, allowing Jeep owners to further enhance their stock vehicle.

“These seven vehicles have been modified with Mopar and Jeep Performance Parts to take on the toughest trails, to go beyond where the road ends,” said Pietro Gorlier, Head of Parts and Service (Mopar), FCA – Global. “Mopar’s mission is to provide all FCA US vehicle owners with unique performance parts and accessories to tailor vehicles to their individual lifestyles. Nothing supports that more than demonstrating how we can equip Jeep owners to take on some of the more extreme trails in the world.”

The seven new Jeep concept vehicles built for Moab this year were created by a team of dedicated, passionate engineers, designers and fabricators that have been customizing production vehicles since 2002, and have introduced more than 50 concept vehicles for the enthusiasts who attend the popular Easter Jeep Safari.

The 2016 Easter Jeep Safari concept vehicles include:

Jeep Crew Chief 715

The Jeep Crew Chief 715 concept vehicle was built as a salute to legendary Jeep military service vehicles, in particular the Kaiser M715. This open-air Wrangler Unlimited-based concept vehicle showcases a burly design with heritage styling cues. The Crew Chief 715 utilizes modern-day construction with a rear seat and extra doors for additional passenger capacity while staying close to its classic military roots.

Original Jeep military service vehicles were legendary for getting troops through rugged terrain, and the Jeep Crew Chief 715 illustrates this legacy. Steel front and rear bumpers, 20-inch beadlock wheels, and 40-inch NDT military tires pay homage to the original Jeep military vehicles. The Crew Chief 715 utilizes an on-board air system with a hard-mounted quick-disconnect fitting for airing up or lending assistance to other vehicles on the trail. Other features include a master cylinder brake upgrade, cold air intake and a modified exhaust.

Exterior features such as Jeep Performance Parts off-road rock rails, a winch mounted into the front and rear bumpers, Dana 60 front and rear axles and a 4-inch lift kit with Jeep Performance Parts/Fox 2.0 Remote Reservoir shocks give the Crew Chief 715 increased capability. The “Tactical Green” color scheme runs from the custom modified M715-inspired front-end to the tailgate. The Crew Chief 715 features a military themed 5-foot cargo bed.

Inside, the no-nonsense interior features leather bucket seats with canvas inserts, aircraft-inspired control switches and Mopar all-weather mats. The media center features a centrally located navigational compass.

The Jeep Crew Chief 715 is powered by the 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine and is mated to a five-speed automatic transmission.

 

Jeep Shortcut

A carefully crafted take on the beloved Jeep CJ-5, this Wrangler-based concept vehicle invokes the spirit of 1950s Americana with a shortened body and functional simplicity.

Exterior styling cues include a unique grille, hood, tailgate, front and rear wheel flares and custom chrome front and rear bumpers. A modified exhaust, 17-inch red steel wheels and 35-inch BF-Goodrich Mud-Terrain T/A KM2 tires help the Jeep Shortcut maintain the look of an icon.

Jeep Performance Parts featured on the Shortcut include a front and rear Dana 44 axle and a 2-inch lift with Fox shocks. Overall body length has been reduced by more than 12 inches to keep the Shortcut concept vehicle light and maneuverable on the trails.

Inside, the simple yet functional interior features low-back leather bucket seats with plaid inserts, a red ball shifter handle, four-point safety cage and Mopar all-weather mats.

The Jeep Shortcut is powered by the 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine and mated to a 5-speed automatic transmission.

 

Jeep Renegade Commander

The Jeep Renegade Commander concept vehicle is equipped with an assortment of Mopar and Jeep Performance Parts for the ultimate off-road adventure. A 2-inch lift kit and 17-inch Rubicon aluminum wheels with 29.5-inch BF-Goodrich All-Terrain T/A KO2 tires increase the off-road capabilities of the Jeep Renegade Commander.

The “Fluorescent Gray” exterior features Renegade’s MySky open-air roof with removable panels, custom body decal, Mopar off-road rock rails, skid plates and a modified exhaust. Also featured are the Mopar brand’s trailer hitch receiver and front and rear auxiliary lights.

Inside, the Renegade Commander includes Katzkin seat covers, body color bezel accents, a pedal kit, Mopar off-road kit and Mopar all-weather floor mats.

The Jeep Renegade Commander is powered by the 2.4-liter Tigershark engine with MultiAir2 mated to a 9-speed automatic transmission with Jeep Active Drive Low.

 

Jeep Comanche

Based on the Jeep Renegade, the Jeep Comanche concept vehicle is designed to be off-road ready with practical utility. A nod to Jeep pickup trucks of years past, the Comanche concept takes styling cues from military and civilian Jeep heritage.

The Comanche’s “Beige Against the Machine” concept exterior paint is accented with a Satin Black hood, a concept lower front fascia, winch, steel rear bumper, soft top, and spare tire in the bed. The wheelbase has been stretched an additional six inches versus a production Renegade to accommodate Comanche’s 5-foot bed.

Inside, the Comanche features custom seat covers, pedal covers, door sill guards, and Mopar all-weather mats. Jeep Performance Parts like off-road rock rails, a 2-inch lift kit and a winch bolster the Comanche’s off-road capability. The Comanche rolls on 16-inch painted wheels and 32-inch BF-Goodrich All Terrain T/A tires.

The Jeep Comanche is powered by a 2.0-liter diesel I-4 engine and mated to a 9-speed automatic transmission with Jeep Active Drive Lock, which includes low range and a locking rear differential.

 

Jeep FC 150

A true American workhorse, this 1960 Jeep FC 150 concept vehicle is rich with heritage and built to tackle both challenging rocky trails and the harshness of a western cattle ranch. Originally built from 1956 to 1965, the FC 150 is based on the CJ-5 and offered a clever packaging solution by keeping overall length to a minimum for maneuverability, but maintained a full-length cargo box for utility.

This heritage Jeep vehicle continues to utilize its original steel body that proudly bears battle scars while components underneath have been revamped. The FC 150’s off-road prowess has been enhanced courtesy of a 2005 Jeep Wrangler chassis modified to accept a Dana 44 front axle, Dana 60 rear axle and 17-inch white steel wheels wrapped in 33-inch BF-Goodrich Mud-Terrain T/A KM2 tires.

Inside, the FC 150 features vinyl seat covers, a custom headliner wrapped in a vintage duck hunting pattern, CB radio, analog compass and Mopar all-weather mats.

The Jeep FC 150 heritage vehicle is powered by a 4.0-liter PowerTech I-6 and is mated to a 3-speed automatic transmission.

 

Jeep Trailcat

The Jeep Trailcat concept vehicle is the ultimate off-road machine, equally at home on Moab’s rugged trails or a high-speed section. Utilizing the supercharged 6.2-liter HEMI® Hellcat V-8 engine, and mated to a 6-speed manual transmission with a custom shifter ball featuring an embossed Hellcat logo, the Trailcat concept vehicle leaves everything else in a cloud of dust.

To get the 707-horsepower Hellcat engine into the Trailcat, designers stretched the wheelbase an additional 12 inches while chopping the windshield two inches for a sleeker look. Mopar exterior enhancements include a power dome vented hood, Satin Black grille, LED headlamp and fog lamps and rock rails.

The robust off-road look is further aided by steel front and rear bumpers, 17-inch beadlock wheels and 39.5-inch BF-Goodrich Krawler T/A KX tires, front and rear Dana 60 axles and Fox shocks.

Subtle design cues, such as a Hellcat decal on the front quarter panels and a “Trailcat” decal on the side of the hood, hint at the horsepower that lurks beneath, making this much more than a typical production Wrangler. The Trailcat’s interior is simple yet functional and features sport bucket seats from the Dodge Viper, made from carbon fiber and featuring Katzkin leather seat covers with accent stitching.

 

Jeep Trailstorm

The Trailstorm concept vehicle is the ultimate Jeep Wrangler for exploring off the beaten path. Offering room for extra gear and fuel tanks, it is based on the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited, and delivers elevated capability to conquer trails with ease.

Off-road capabilities are enhanced with several Jeep Performance Parts, including 17-inch concept off-road wheels wrapped in 37-inch tires, a 2-inch lift kit with Jeep Performance Parts/Fox shocks, a Jeep Performance Parts Rubicon winch, and Dana 44 front and rear axles. Half doors offer a clear view of obstacles ahead and a bedlined interior makes cleaning up after a day on the trails easy.

Mopar exterior enhancements include a winch guard, Satin Black grille, LED headlights and fog lights, high top fenders, power-dome vented hood, Mopar off-road rock rails with a step, Big Brake Kit, a concept fast-back soft top, tail light guards and a Mopar fuel filler door. Finishing the Trailstorm’s exterior upgrades are a steel front and rear Rubicon bumper and a Jeep Performance Parts tire carrier. The Trailstorm is wrapped in camouflage allowing it to blend into its surroundings in the Utah desert.

The Trailstorm’s bedlined interior also features Katzkin seat covers and Mopar all-weather floor mats. The Jeep Trailstorm is powered by a 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine and is mated to a 5-speed automatic transmission.

Istituto Europeo di Design MA Transport Design Students Unveil ‘Shiwa’

 

IED and Quattroruote in Geneva present the latest concept car by the Master in Transportation Design, a self-driving vehicle that focuses on the user experience. After an initial collaboration started in 2015, the two organisations have partnered again on the occasion of their anniversaries: in 2016 they celebrate 50 years since the first IED creative graduate and 60 years from the first issue of the magazine that would become an international leader in the automotive world.

Shiwa (4,700mm long, 2,000mm wide, 1,500 high and with a 3,660mm wheelbase) is a noiseless zero emissions self-driving vehicle with four seats and four electric motors integrated in the drivetrain. Shiwa – a Japanese word meaning “fold” – indicates the form/action able to transform a surface without resistance into a self-supporting object, as in origami: the fold gives form and function to a surface which otherwise would lack them. This is the initial concept from which the Korean student Youngjin SHIM drafted her project, which was then developed by a team composed of her and eleven other Master students, including the Italian Luca MENICACCI and the Indian Jaykishan Vithalbhai LAKHANI. The external structure of the concept is inspired by the fold/origami idea.
The concept car highlights a new idea of an object strong through its form, redefining the idea of chassis and of external structure, which in this case encloses the cabin shaped like a suspended “diamond”. The exterior origami protecting the diamond-cabin is made of metal composite material with an aluminium finish and is connected to a frame. The Shiwa cabin interior surfaces are designed to project multimedia contents towards the passengers, outdoors or to create an augmented reality. The cabin is designed to bring people together, thanks to the seats configuration disrupting the traditional passenger-driver hierarchy and delineating different spaces and uses and reinterpreting the concept of conversation and interaction inside the vehicle. Shiwa envelops the passengers both physically, in their sensory dimension and in all the relational aspects among themselves and with the outside world.

The vechicle uses an all wheel drive system with 4 brushless motors mounted directly on the wheels, a totally electric power unit. Shiwa is an IICV – Individual Identity Companion Vehicle: it learns the identity, interests and habits of its occupants, it recognises their features and adapts its behaviour to circumstances and to passengers. Among its features is a fingerprint keyless entry system. Shiwa also features full-LED headlights and a front OLED display indicating the charging level of the car and allowing the opening and the insertion of the charging plug-in.

“The automotive world is on the verge of a paradigm shift that will revolutionise processes and archetypes – says Gian Luca Pellegrini, director of Quattroruote. Shiwa wants to be a starting point on the road towards a future in which the role of manufacturers and motorists will undergo an ultimate transformation: a world where the self-driving vehicles will introduce a new way of intending private transport as well as a different interpretation of design”.
“Shiwa is a self-driving vehicle but talking about it today means facing obstacles that are more psychological and organizational than technological – declares Riccardo Balbo, Director of IED Turin. With Shiwa, IED and Quattroruote raise their eyes towards the horizon on a temporal space of the city spanning over the next 15 years. Shiwa proposes scenarios and solutions that automotive brands are starting to face today in order to address the industrial market of urban mobility towards 2030, in a world very different and certainly not predictable today, but where the comparison between mobility, habitat and society will require more radical answers. The concept car subverts the established approach of the automotive world: it is designed starting from the user experience and from the inside, imagining a micro-habitat for the individual. A space where the experience, time, information and quality of life become central and prevail over the exterior design, becoming direct expression of the internal design”.

The project is the result of a creative process involving students in a process replicating that of a contemporary automotive design centre. All Master students submitted an individual proposal; the projects better suited to answer the brief for the interior or exterior area were selected and combined for designing the final version. The class then created a core work team which completed the final full-scale concept design. The show car was constructed by Cecomp, for over 30 years the European leader in the production of models and prototypes, which has always cooperated with the Institute in the prototyping process. The SHIWA project was also supported by various technical partners including Newcast Services, Model Resine, OZ Racing and Pirelli.

About the Project & Course

Initial Brief

THE AUTONOMOUS DRIVING VEHICLE: NEW ENGINEERS COMPONENTS IN TRADITIONAL SOLUTIONS OR DESIGN SOLUTIONS FOR A MOBILITY FUTURE?

Design an autonomous car or vehicle. Imagine how many opportunities designers can bring in terms of concepts, solutions, philosophy and perception open in such a scenario, where lots of rules are changed or up to: interior layouts can drastically affect the main body concepts, technology can define different uses, fashion, even the inner sense of property of a vehicle. The challenge designers should tackle is jump a step ahead and imagine an autonomous car starting from design rather than technology.

Students on the two year course come from different design backgrounds. Admission to the course is restricted to professionals with at least two years work experience in the sector or graduates from IED or colleges in a similar field as well as other design graduates.

 

Credits
Shiwa is the brainchild of: Youngjin SHIM (Korea); Luca MENICACCI (Italy) and Jaykishan Vithalbhai LAKHANI (India)
Interior Design development: Jose Ignacio MARTINEZ FLORES (Ecuador)
Project contributors: Chen LUJIA (China); Charles Frederic Nestor CARRUPT (Switzerland); Mikhail D. SOUZA (India); Qichang LI (China); Kejin PAN (China); Alparslan TURHAN (Turkey); Gaurav UDAVANT (India) and Honghu ZHANG (China), students of the Master in Transportation Design IED Turin AY 2014/15.
Shiwa was realized under the coordination of Alessandro Cipolli, Master in Transportation Design Coordinator and Davide Tealdi, IED teacher. The project was carried out under the supervision of Fulvio Fantolino, Coordination of Transportation Design.

A Bit of Mercedes History at Retro Classics 2016

Mercedes-Benz will be attending the Retro Classics in Stuttgart, offering visitors a journey through time in the fascinating world of the brand’s cabriolets and roadsters. The exhibition covers everything from the 300 SL racing sports car (W 194) from 1952 and the classic sports car 300 SL Roadster (W 198) from 1957, the 190 E 2.6 Cabriolet prototype (W 201) from 1990, to the new SL (R 231) and the recently premiered C-Class Cabriolet (A 205).The 300 SL racing sports car (W 194) and the 300 SL Roadster (W 198) bear testimony to the successes of the 1950s and the SL legend. The racing sports car stands for the overwhelmingly successful return of Mercedes-Benz to motor racing in the 1952 season for the first time after the Second World War. The vehicle proved an outright winner, securing impressive double victories at the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the Carrera Panamericana in Mexico. The racing sports car also gave rise to the famous standard-production “Gullwing” 300 SL (W 198) from 1954, which made its debut in spring 1957 in the open-top variant, the 300 SL Roadster. Together with the 190 SL (W 121) launched in 1955, the 300 SL Roadster started the tradition of open-top Mercedes-Benz standard-production sports cars with the magical abbreviation SL, which the new generation of the SL (R 231) propels forward into the future.

A glance back at 1990 reveals how the Mercedes-Benz development department was toying with the idea of producing a cabriolet to join the compact saloon (W 201). The original prototype on display at the Retro Classics is the road-going result of these deliberations. Even if the open-top “Baby Benz” did not enter series production, the study was a key decision-making aid for the 124 series Cabriolet unveiled in 1991 and today ranks among the forebears of the new C-Class Cabriolet (A 205).

For those looking to buy..

The ‘All Time Stars‘ from Mercedes-Benz Classic have their own stand in Hall 7 at the Retro Classics. The line-up features all cars made by Mercedes-Benz and the predecessor brands. The focus is on classics that are suitable for everyday driving. Maximum transparency was the guiding principle behind their selection: the Mercedes-Benz Classic experts subjected each vehicle to a comprehensive 160-item checklist.

Cars exhibited by Mercedes-Benz Classic at theRetro Classics 2016

Großer Jubiläumspreis vom Nürburgring für Sportwagen, 3. August 1952. Fritz Rieß (Startnummer 22) belegte mit einem Mercedes-Benz Typ 300 SL Roadster (W 194, 1952) den 3. Platz.

Nürburgring, 3rd August 1952. Fritz Rieß in car 22, the Mercedes-Benz Type 300 SL Roadster (W 194, 1952) in 3rd place.

Mercedes-Benz 300 SL racing sports car (W 194, 1952)
300 SL was the designation of the competition racing car from Mercedes-Benz with which the brand returned to international motor racing in 1952 for the first time after the Second World War. Following the triumphant double victory in Le Mans and the previous double victory at the Bern Grand Prix, the 300 SL also won the two other races where it had lined up on the grid. The 300 SL took the top four places at the Nürburgring Great Jubilee Prize in the weight-reduced roadster version, while the Carrera Panamericana, a gruelling endurance race covering more than 3100 kilometres through Mexico, saw the car finish with a double victory. Karl Kling and Hans Klenk took first place in Mexico despite colliding with a vulture that smashed through the windscreen during the race. Even if the successful racing sports car was not sold to the public, it did light the fuse for the development of the subsequent Mercedes-Benz SL, which was launched at the end of 1953.
Produced: 1952
Cylinders: 6/in-line
Displacement: 2996 cc
Output: 125 kW (170 hp)
Top speed: 230 km/h

Mercedes-Benz Typ 300 SL Roadster (W 198 II, 1957 bis 1963), 1960.

Mercedes-Benz Typ 300 SL Roadster (W 198 II, 1957 bis 1963), 1960. Posing does not get better than this.

Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Roadster (W 198, 1957-1963)
Mercedes-Benz unveiled the 300 SL Roadster as the successor to the 300 SL Gullwing Coupé at the Geneva Motor Show in March 1957. On a technical level, the open-top sports car was very like the Coupé, although the modified space frame allowed the installation of conventionally attached doors, which were necessary for open-top driving. The suspension was likewise modified: the single-joint swing axle with lowered pivot point on the 300 SL Roadster was equipped with a compensating spring for the first time. From 1958 onwards, the Roadster was also available with a detachable coupé roof. It was from the standard-production 300 SL Roadster that the Mercedes-Benz engineers developed the 300 SLS racing variant with which Paul O’Shea won Category D of the American Sports Car Championship in 1957. Production of the 300 SL Roadster was discontinued after seven years in 1963, during which time precisely 1858 examples of the highly exclusive sports car were built.
Produced: 1957-1963
Cylinders: 6/in-line
Displacement: 2996 cc
Output: 158 kW (215 hp)
Top speed: up to 250 km/h

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Mercedes-Benz 190 E 2.6 Cabriolet prototype (W 201, 1990)
Following the facelift of the Mercedes-Benz W 201 series, which was unveiled in 1988, the brand turned its attention to a cabriolet. The result was a road-going prototype, which stood out with its four fully-fledged seats and enhanced body with subtly higher, slightly more angular rear where the large folding top was concealed under a metallic lid. The two-door cabriolet also boasted an elegant side line even with the roof closed. The car ultimately failed to make it into series production, yet the study served as a decision-making aid on the way to the larger 124 series Cabriolet, which was launched in 1992 and was among the forebears of the current E-Class Cabriolet. The compact cabriolet prototype features a 2.6-litre six-cylinder engine in tune with the sporty, exclusive aspirations of the open-top two-seater. This powerplant has been available in the 201 series since 1985, propelling the most powerful model in the compact class after the “V16 engine”.
Produced: 1990
Cylinders: 6/in-line
Displacement: 2597 ccO
utput: 122 kW (166 hp) at 5800 rpm

Mercedes-Benz C-Class Cabriolet (A 205, since 2016)
The new C-Class Cabriolet premiered at the 86th Geneva International Motor Show in early March 2016. It is the first standard-production cabriolet in the history of the Mercedes-Benz C-Class, which started with the W 201 (“190”) in 1982. The Cabriolet is closely related to the C-Class Coupé (C 205) whose silhouette it adopts along with the striking front end featuring a diamond radiator grille, LED High Performance headlamps, long bonnet and high beltline. The soft top with glass window transitions harmoniously into the distinctly styled rear end with its highly sporty look. With a capacity of 360 litres (285 litres with the roof open), the boot is capable of holding an exceptional amount of luggage for a cabriolet, thus offering high everyday practicality. Inside, the C-Class Cabriolet with its high-quality materials provides a fresh, sporty reinterpretation of the interior of the C-Class Saloon. Added to which are extensive assistance systems tailored to safety and comfort – through to solutions for semi-autonomous driving. The automatic AIRCAP draught-stop and the AIRSCARF neck-level heating are available as options. Altogether eight different engines are available for the market launch in July 2016, including two diesel models and the C 43 4MATIC Cabriolet as the top-of-the-line model.
Cylinders: 4/in-line to V6
Displacement: 1595 to 2996 cc
Output: 115 kW (156 hp) to 270 kW (367 hp)
Top speed: 250 km/h (governed)
Combined CO2 emissions: from 116 g/km

Mercedes-AMG SL 65, Brilliantblau Mercedes-AMG SL 65, brilliant blue

Mercedes-Benz SL Roadster (R 231, since 2016)
The R 231 series SL with its advanced technology and new styling was premiered at the Los Angeles Auto Show in November 2015. The facelifted Roadster is due to be launched in April 2016. It marks the continuation of Mercedes-Benz’s unique tradition of elegant sportiness, which began with the motorsport-inspired 300 SL in the 1950s. Compared with the first version of the R 231 unveiled in 2012, the new SL boasts an even more dynamic design and more powerful engines. Furthermore, the 9G-TRONIC automatic transmission, DYNAMIC SELECT with five transmission modes and Active Body Control with curve tilting function elevate the Roadster’s ride comfort and sportiness to new levels. The roof, which can now be operated at speeds of up to 40 km/h, and the automatic boot separator are further convenience features which make the luxury sports car even more of a pleasure to drive.
Cylinders: V6 (SL 400) to V12 (SL 65)
Displacement: 2996 to 5980 cc
Output: 270 kW (367 hp) to 463 kW (630 hp)
Top speed: 250 km/h (governed)
Combined CO2 emissions: from 175 g/km