Video: Automotive tumblehome explained

Filed under: Videos, Design/Style

Automotive Tumblehome Video

If you’ve ever been in the midst of reading some description of new car design, and had to stop to find the “Tumblehome” page on Wikipedia, we don’t blame you. The term (like so many) is a carryover from the nautical world and ship building, and is used to describe the inward slant of a vehicle’s greenhouse.

Starting with the salty origins of the folksy sounding piece of design jargon, Autoline Detroit‘s Jim Hall takes on a journey from past to future, explaining how the shape of a car’s tumblehome has evolved throughout the years.

Close that dusty old dictionary and scroll down below to follow along with Mr. Hall and the rest of the class.

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Automotive tumblehome explained originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 06 Aug 2013 17:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Official: Hyundai NA CEO Krafcik awarded Automotive Executive of the Year

Filed under: Etc., Hyundai

Hyundai North America CEO John Krafcik

Hyundai North America CEO John Krafcik is this year’s Automotive Executive of the Year. DNV Business Assurance presents the award each year, and this year, Robert Djurovic, executive director of the award program, said Krafcik won the nod because he “reshaped the way Hyundai approaches the market with consumer focus, compelling design and enduring value.” While speaking at the award ceremony, Krafcik said that he was humbled by the recognition and that he accepted the accolade on behalf of Hyundai team members, dealers and suppliers.

Krafcik joined Hyundai in 2004 as the vice president of product development and took on duties as chief executive in 2008. Since then, the automaker has seen a flurry of new products and a substantial jump in market share. His efforts have also helmed Hyundai to two North American Car of the Year awards in 2009 and 2012 for the Genesis and Elantra, respectively. Krafcik also helped Hyundai navigate through the company’s fuel economy debacle that began late last year, in which the automaker admitted it overstated the efficiency ratings of many of its automobiles.

The Automotive Executive of the Year Award has been recognizing industry leaders since 1964. You can read the full press release below for more information.

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Hyundai NA CEO Krafcik awarded Automotive Executive of the Year originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 24 Jun 2013 10:57:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Official: Bob Lutz, Jackie Stewart among Automotive Hall of Fame inductees

Filed under: Etc., Celebrities

Bob Lutz

Jackie StewartThe Automotive Hall of Fame has announced this year’s inductees, and both Bob Lutz (above) and Jackie Stewart (right inset) are among the lucky handful of honorees. A total of ten individuals from automotive past and present are being inducted for 2013. Those include Robert Bamford and Lionel Martin, the duo who founded Aston Martin some 100 years ago, as well as David E. Cole, the founder of the Center for Automotive Research. Cole also served as the director of the Office for the Study of Automotive Transportation.

Bob Lutz likely needs no introduction. He’s served as an executive with multiple automakers, but is most well-known for his time at both Chrysler and as General Motors vice chairman. Jackie Stewart, meanwhile, remains one of the world’s top racing drivers. Having competed in Formula One, Can Am and nearly every other venue that pits two cars against each other or the clock, Stewart is a legend of motorsport.

The Automotive Hall of Fame is also giving the Distinguished Service Citation Award to four individuals, including Bo Anderson. Anderson is the president and CEO of Russia’s GAZ Group and is largely responsible for helping turn the company around. Neil De Koker, founding president of the Original Equipment Suppliers Association will also receive the award as will James McElya. McElya helped steer Cooper-Standard through a difficult restructuring.

Bob Lutz, Jackie Stewart among Automotive Hall of Fame inductees originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 14 Jun 2013 07:58:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Dutch artist makes automotive masterpieces from scrap wood

Filed under: Classics, Coupe, Sedan, Etc., Europe, Porsche, Alfa Romeo

1969 Alfa Romeo Guilietta

Dutch artist Diedrich Kraaijeveld makes photorealistic sculptures of cars from painted pieces of wood. That’s impressive enough, but here’s the best part: Kraaijeveld’s pieces are assembled from painted pieces of wood he scavenges and recycles. In other words, these perfectly color-matched and shaded collages take shape from scrap wood that Kraaijeveld gathers in specific colors.

Most of the pieces are made to replicate photographs, and almost none of them are started until Kraaijeveld has a glut of one color of wood. With the collection process taken care of, the forms of classic sports cars start to take shape. We’re particularly fond of his Alfa Romeo Giulietta and Porsche 911.

According to Inhabitat, Kraaijeveld scavenges the wood from around his hometown in Holland and while on vacation in different parts of the world. Head over to Inhabitat to see more of Kraaijeveld’s work.

Dutch artist makes automotive masterpieces from scrap wood originally appeared on Autoblog on Sun, 22 May 2011 15:33:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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GoSmart automotive smartphone accessory is ironically named

Filed under: Safety, Technology, Videos

gosmart clip on a lexus wheel

GoSmart Clip in action – Click above to watch the video after the jump

In a world chock-full of bad ideas, the makers of the GoSmart Clip have found a way to stand out. The device is actually quite simple in form. It’s a plastic phone holder that clips onto many smartphones, and utilizes an elastic strap to adhere itself to the steering wheel. The device retails for $29.95, and it comes in both red and black.

A $30 price tag isn’t too horrible for any chunk of useful plastic, but this testament to distracted driving takes “smart” to an entirely different level. The device is obviously for those who like to play on their phone when they’re going 75 miles-per-hour, though the device’s FAQ page tells owners not to text and drive and recommends using Bluetooth when you’re on a call. That was responsible of them. And if you’re wondering if the device blocks the gauge cluster, we’re guessing the answer is almost always yes. But don’t worry, the FAQ says that if the gauges are blocked, simply move the device too 11 o’clock or 1 o’clock on the steering wheel. Problem solved, right?

With over 5,000 deaths per year attributed to distracted driving, the GoSmart seems like one of the worst accessories ever. Luckily, the company made a video to prove how sturdy the device is, and you can check it out by hitting the jump.

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GoSmart automotive smartphone accessory is ironically named originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 06 May 2011 15:58:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Mullin Automotive Museum steps closer to bringing classic Bugatti coupe to life

Filed under: Concept Cars, Classics, Bugatti, Design/Style

1939 bugatti type 64 coupe

1939 Bugatti Type 64 Coupe – Click above for high-res image gallery

Peter Mullin is nuts for classic French cars. His Mullin Automotive Museum is a beautiful shrine to a very specific period of automotive history. One particular vehicle in his collection is Jean Bugatti’s unfinished 1939 Type 64 Coupe. Jean was Ettore’s oldest son, and he died while test driving the Le Mans-winning Type 57 C. His Type 64 Coupe chassis never got the body that Bugatti hoped to have built for it… but Mr. Mullin is going to change that.

Using Jean Bugatti’s sketches as a guide, Mullin has partnered with Stewart Reed Design to develop a vision of what the car should look like. Now, that pair is joined by Mike Kleeves of Automobile Metal Shaping Company, which means that team officially have someone on their team capable of bringing this bit of conceptual art into the physical world.

For more on the Type 64, check out the up-close look at the car we experienced during a field trip to the Mullin Museum in 2010.

Gallery: 1939 Bugatti Type 64

1939 Bugatti Type 641939 Bugatti Type 641939 Bugatti Type 64

Gallery: Mullin Museum: Bugatti Type 64 Coupe Chassis

Photos copyright (C)2011 by Drew Phillips/AOL

[Source: Mullin Automotive Museum]

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Mullin Automotive Museum steps closer to bringing classic Bugatti coupe to life originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 27 Apr 2011 19:25:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Report: Renesas Electronics to restart automotive microchip production early

Filed under: Japan, Plants/Manufacturing, Honda, Nissan, Toyota

RenesasJapan’s Renesas Electronics Corp. is moving up the restart date for automotive microchip production at its last inactive plant. The company says it should have operations back up and running at its Naka plant the week of June 15, a couple weeks earlier than its original estimate.

Renesas is the world’s largest supplier of chips for cars, and is a major kink in the parts supply line for Japanese automakers. The Naka plant was damaged in the March earthquake, and will be Renesas’ last facility to resume production.

The plant will operate on a limited schedule at first, building around 3,000 200-millimeter wafers a month, down from a pre-earthquake total of almost 34,000. To compensate, the company has shifted some production burden from Naka to its other manufacturing plants. For now, Renesas is focused on getting any production restarted, but should know by mid-May when it can resume at full capacity. Read the press release after the jump.

[Source: Renesas via Automotive News | Image: Renesas Electronics Corporation]

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Report: Renesas Electronics to restart automotive microchip production early originally appeared on Autoblog on Sat, 23 Apr 2011 14:05:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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BMW Brilliance Automotive previews 5 Series plug-in hybrid prototype

Filed under: Hybrid, Sedan, China, BMW, Shanghai Motor Show, Luxury

2013 BMW 5 Series Plug-In Hybrid

2013 BMW 5 Series plug-in hybrid – Click above for high-res version

In the lead-in to the Shanghai Motor Show, BMW has teased an upcoming plug-in hybrid 5 Series that will be exclusive to the Chinese market. The prototype of this greener version of BMW’s midsize sedan is based on the China-only long-wheelbase 5 Series platform.

The car is part of a joint venture between BMW and Chinese automaker Brilliance. The car is the tip of an eco-friendly iceberg BMW has aimed squarely at China, a country with an increasing appetite for premium-segment cars and a serious need for green-focused, energy-efficient vehicles.

Despite its size, BMW says the plug-in 5 Series will manage nearly 250 miles on a single charge and tank of gas, with up to 47 miles of those on electric power only, provided you don’t creep past 37 miles per hour. Those numbers certainly aren’t what you’d call impressive, but they’re a step in the right direction and they’d likely be a major help in the thick traffic snarls that China’s major cities are famous for. As for the U.S. market, a full plug-in 5 Series is unlikely, but BMW is understood to be planning to bring a traditional mild hybrid version of the car to our shores. For now, check out the prototype in our gallery below and via the press release after the jump.

Gallery: 2013 BMW 5 Series Plug-In Hybrid

2013 BMW 5 Series Plug-In Hybrid

[Source: BMW]

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BMW Brilliance Automotive previews 5 Series plug-in hybrid prototype originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 07 Apr 2011 18:21:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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David E. Davis, Jr., Dean of automotive journalism, dead at 80

Filed under: Classics

David E. Davis, Jr.David E. Davis, Jr. has died at age 80. The longtime Car and Driver editor, Automobile Magazine founder and man with his fingerprints all over this great business of ours passed away unexpectedly after complications from bladder surgery at 5:15pm Eastern on Sunday. A hugely witty man with a talent for honing a magazine’s voice and recognizing and refining talent in those around him, Davis stands among the founding fathers of modern automotive journalism.

In recent years, Davis had returned to C/D as a columnist after helping to get pioneering digital auto magazine, Winding Road, off the ground. He has held sway over nearly every great print title in the American auto journalism world at one point or another, including Road & Track and Motor Trend, and earlier in his professional life, he cultivated a distinguished career in the automotive ad business, where he was instrumental in the creation of General Motors’ seminal “Baseball, Hot Dogs, Apple Pie and Chevrolet” campaign, among others.

As an editor, publisher, ad man, racer, mentor and raconteur extraordinaire, Davis leaves an indelible mark on the industry. As a family man, he leaves behind his beloved wife, Jeannie, a daughter and two sons, including our own European Editor, Matt Davis.

Ever eloquent, where others might simply inquire “How are you?”, Davis was known for asking colleagues and friends “Is your life a rich tapestry?” Davis’ own life was certainly a vibrant and detailed work of art. Everyone in auto world owes this icon a debt of gratitude… and some of us even owe him our careers.

David E. Davis, Jr., Dean of automotive journalism, dead at 80 originally appeared on Autoblog on Sun, 27 Mar 2011 21:18:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Opinion: Ranking the automotive Super Bowl ads from best to worst [w/videos]

Filed under: Marketing/Advertising, Videos

Volkswagen and Chrysler lead

Volkswagen Passat uses The Force

Super Bowl XLV car ads – Click above to see the videos and their rankings after the jump

The Super Bowl is a contest of advertisers as much as it is for two football teams seeking championship rings, the big trophy and bragging rights.

The Super Bowl is one of the few times a year that most of the country is gathered around a single event.

This year, twelve of the advertisers are from the auto sector: Chevrolet, Chrysler, BMW, Mini, Mercedes-Benz, Volkswagen, Audi, Hyundai, Kia, Suzuki, Cars.com and Bridgestone.

Why so many car related ads? 2011 is widely seen as a breakout year for the auto industry. In 2008 and 2009, sales fell below 11 million, about one-third less than the industry had been doing in the early part of the decade. Sales in 2010 were better and sales are forecasted to come back even stronger this year.

The slowly recovering economy has kept a lot of consumers out of the new car showrooms. But cars and trucks are getting older. The U.S. has seen a sales rate below the annual scrap rate for a few years now. The stock market is back to where it was before the 2008 economic meltdown. Unemployment is ticking down. Things are looking up.

“The Super Bowl is one of the few times a year that most of the country is gathered around a single event,” says General Motors marketing chief Joel Ewanick, who bought five ads at $2.7-$3 million per to advertise Chevrolet models. Chrysler marketing chief Olivier Francois says, “There is no better place for a real coming out,” referring to a slate of newly designed vehicles Chysler is releasing this year. Chrysler bought an unprecedented two-minute ad.

Continue reading and to see the rankings of the Top 10.

Continue reading Opinion: Ranking the automotive Super Bowl ads from best to worst [w/videos]

Opinion: Ranking the automotive Super Bowl ads from best to worst [w/videos] originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 07 Feb 2011 15:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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