ETC: Mercedes drastically reduces size of S-Class with new model cars

Filed under: Mercedes-Benz, Toys/Games

Mercedes-Benz S-Class scale models

Mercedes-Benz takes its all-new S-Class quite seriously, even by German standards. So it shouldn’t come as a shock that even a scale-model Sonderklasse is carefully crafted. The miniatures in question cover the 2014 S-Class and come courtesy of three brands, in three different sizes, and are available through the Mercedes-Benz Collection.

The largest, and not surprisingly priciest, model is a 1:18-scale (making it about 11.4 inches long) creation from Norev. It features 145 individual parts, with opening and closing doors, trunk, and hood. For those that like to play with their expensive toys, the Norev S-Class comes with gloves. Dropping down the line is a 1:43-scale from Schuco that sits at 4.5 inches long. Like the larger model, it has a sunroof, detailed headlights, and multi-spoke wheels. With 55 parts, the doors, hood, and trunk can’t be manipulated, but it does come on a stylish plinth, with a case. The smallest model is by Herpa, and is a tiny 1:87-scale (about 2.3 inches long) miniature. Only 26 parts are used, but like the Schuco, it comes on a plinth and with a case.

All three models come with a choice of three paints, with Diamond White Metallic available across the range. The Norev model adds Blue Anthracite and Iridium Silver, while the Schuco can be had in Diamond Silver and Magnetite Black. The Herpa, meanwhile, runs a mix of the two, with Blue Anthracite and Magnetite Black.

Pricing is only available in euros, and includes Germany’s 19-percent value added tax. The Norev is 79.90 euros ($106.06), the Schuco is 29.90 euros ($39.69) and the Herpa is 15.90 euros ($21.11, all conversions are today’s rates.) Scroll down below for a press release from Mercedes.

Continue reading Mercedes drastically reduces size of S-Class with new model cars

Mercedes drastically reduces size of S-Class with new model cars originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 01 Aug 2013 08:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Video: Razor Crazy Cart may be the coolest kid-size drift car money can buy

Filed under: Videos, Toys/Games, Humor

It might as well be a fact that if you want to get ahead in the world of motorsports, you need to start young. And since most toddlers can’t see over the wheel or reach the pedals in an actual car, karts are the most logical option. Unfortunately, big league karts are not cheap.

Enter the Crazy Cart, from Razor. Somehow, we doubt there’s ever been a better way of teaching a small child about car control. With four corner-mounted castors and a single electrically powered wheel below the steering column, the Crazy Cart can make any pre-schooler a drifting master. That central wheel can turn 360 degrees, which blesses the Crazy Cart with sublime agility and ease of control. A tiny handbrake is also available, for even more lurid sliding.

Of course, there are concerns. One Autoblog staffer called it “a pediatrician’s nightmare,” and while it does look stable, we’d be inclined to agree. And then there’s the $400 asking price. While it’s expensive, it’s probably a lot cheaper than dropping money on a kart, only to find out that your kid isn’t all that into it. And besides, as the video shows, it can handle an adult.

In that case, we’ll take seven. Check out the video below for the full rundown of the Crazy Cart’s abilities.

Continue reading Razor Crazy Cart may be the coolest kid-size drift car money can buy

Razor Crazy Cart may be the coolest kid-size drift car money can buy originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 12 Jul 2013 12:46:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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GM considering cut in full-size truck production

Filed under: Car Buying, Truck, Chevrolet, GM, GMC

2011 gmc sierra

2011 GMC Sierra – Click above for high-res image gallery

As the price of fuel rises, those shopping for automobiles began to take an even deeper look at their options before plunking down the greenbacks. It’s an economics carnival ride that never seems to stop running, and consumers can never stop riding. General Motors has been paying extra attention to the amount of trucks it’s selling, and it knows that a 111-day stockpile of full-size pickups is less than ideal.

One month is hardly a trend, however, and GM’s North American President Mark Reuss will be eyeballing the company’s pickup truck inventory as the weeks progress. Should the amount of trucks sitting on lot stay high, Reuss will have to scale back production of his full-size work horses.

As trucks sit and fuel prices rise, economy cars start to look more attractive to shoppers. GM saw a record number of Chevrolet Cruze sedans finding new homes in April. Even though its compacts are surging, trucks haven’t fallen completely flat. Year-to-date demand for pickups, despite falling last month, is still up compared to 2010.

GM considering cut in full-size truck production originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 05 May 2011 13:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Video: Is Chevy readying a mid-size SUV on its new Colorado pickup?

Filed under: Spy Photos, SUV, Videos, Chevrolet, GM

Mystery Chevrolet SUV spy shot

Mystery Chevy SUV prototypes – Click above to watch the video after the jump

Crossovers have gained the lion’s share of America’s utility attention over the past few years, but the SUV is anything but dead and gone. Until gas prices began to spike, those surviving body-on-frame (br)utes were actually selling fairly well. So is General Motors kicking itself for ending Trailblazer production instead of refreshing it? New spy video from Inside Line suggests that The General may have another off-road- and tow-ready utility vehicle on the way.

The post-jump video shows a pair of mid-size SUVs that appear to be based off the 2013 Chevrolet Colorado, a prototype of which also makes a cameo in the video. Judging by the chunky-looking running boards and solid rear axles, these prototypes are definitely SUVs and not tall cars. The heavily camouflaged vehicles appear to be tall and very square in appearance, and the shape of the Chevrolet grille appears pominently despite efforts to conceal its identity. Inside Line speculates that the finished product will likely hit the world stage in the next year, with production likely for 2013, though just because these prototypes were spotted around Detroit is no guarantee that the model will find its way into U.S. showrooms.

If such a vehicle were to arrive stateside, we expect GM to improve fuel economy with small engine options and perhaps a truck version of the company’s eAssist hybrid technology. Hit the jump to watch the spy video for yourself. Top tip, Ed!

Gallery: Chevrolet Colorado Show Truck

Chevrolet Colorado Show TruckChevrolet Colorado Show TruckChevrolet Colorado Show TruckChevrolet Colorado Show TruckChevrolet Colorado Show Truck

[Source: Inside Line]

Continue reading Video: Is Chevy readying a mid-size SUV on its new Colorado pickup?

Video: Is Chevy readying a mid-size SUV on its new Colorado pickup? originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 31 Mar 2011 19:27:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Report: Honda slashes board size to speed decision making

Filed under: Etc., Honda

honda emblemIn a move similar to one recently made by Toyota, Honda has announced a plan to reduce the size of its Board of Directors. Downsizing from 20 to 12 board members will allow Honda to streamline its decision making process.

Pending approval at Honda’s upcoming shareholder’s meeting, the changes will be made official in June. Among those being removed from the board is American Honda Motor Company President Tetsuo Iwamura. He will retain his stateside presidential role and his additional position of Senior Managing Director with Honda HQ in Japan. [Source: Automotive News – sub. req.]

Report: Honda slashes board size to speed decision making originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 23 Feb 2011 16:15:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Automoblox debuts full-size hot rods and trailer set

Filed under: Toys/Games

Automoblox Hot Rod HR3 full size

The last time we heard from Automoblox was over a year ago when company owner and designer, Patrick Calello, debuted an all-new type of his unique toy cars: hot rods. A great way to introduce a child to icons of automotive past, the hot rods are fun to play with (so says my two nephews) but to date have only available as Automoblox Minis. This Christmas, the company is offering all three hot rod styles as full-size Automoblox cars (The red HR1 for $45, yellow HR2 for $50 and blue HR3 – my favorite, above – for $50), as well as debuting a new Hot Rod Trailer set ($120) that includes a full-size hot rod, pickup and trailer. And though you’ve probably seen Automoblox at more mainstream toy retailers this year, these full-size hot rods are available only at Automoblox.com for the time being.

Automoblox full-size Hot Rod Trailer Set
Based on my own experience, kids up to age 4 seem to always gravitate towards the Minis, while somewhere around 4 to 5 they switch over to full-size Automoblox vehicles. Keep that in mind if you’re considering Automoblox as a Christmas present for a young one in your family. If you’re shopping for an adult, also remember that while the full-size Automoblox are the most impressive, you can fit more Minis on a display shelf.

And because Patrick Calello is as big a fan of Autoblog as we are of his toys, we’ll also have some Automoblox to give away to readers in time for Christmas. Make sure you Like the Autoblog Facebook page now, as that’s where the giveaway will happen.

[Source: Automoblox]

Automoblox debuts full-size hot rods and trailer set originally appeared on Autoblog on Sun, 21 Nov 2010 16:29:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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LA 2010: 2012 Buick LaCrosse eAssist brings efficiency to the full-size luxury sedan

Filed under: LA Auto Show, Hybrid, Sedan, Buick, GM, Luxury

2012 Buick LaCrosse eAssist

2012 Buick LaCrosse eAssist – Click above for high-res image gallery

Full-size luxury sedans are typically guilty pleasures since they can be either coddling, comfort machines or all-out speed freaks. One thing they haven’t been is fuel efficient… until now. Making its debut at the 2010 LA Auto Show is the 2012 Buick LaCrosse eAssist.

Power for the LaCrosse eAssist is provided by a 2.4-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine with direct-injection. It gains an efficiency boost through the addition of a 115V lithium-ion battery pack, which allows the fuel system to take a nap during certain conditions. These two power systems working together, along with the six-speed automatic transmission, allow the Buick LaCrosse eAssist to achieve 25 miles per gallon in the city and 37 mpg on the highway – a 25% percent improvement compared to the 2.4-liter flying solo. Consider this the reinvention of GM’s long lost mild hybrid system.

Pricing for the 2012 Buick LaCrosse eAssist is expected to start around $30,000. What’s more, the hybrid system will be fitted standard to all LaCrosse models equipped with the 2.4-liter Ecotec engine. More green luxury information is sprouting just after the jump.

Gallery: LA 2010: 2012 Buick LaCrosse eAssist

2012 Buick LaCrosse eAssist2012 Buick LaCrosse eAssist2012 Buick LaCrosse eAssist2012 Buick LaCrosse eAssist2012 Buick LaCrosse eAssist

Photos copyright (C)2010 Drew Philips / AOL

[Source: General Motors]

Continue reading LA 2010: 2012 Buick LaCrosse eAssist brings efficiency to the full-size luxury sedan

LA 2010: 2012 Buick LaCrosse eAssist brings efficiency to the full-size luxury sedan originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 17 Nov 2010 21:58:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Report: Hyundai Sonata overtakes Nissan Altima for third in mid-size segment

Filed under: Car Buying, Sedan, Hyundai

2011 Hyundai Sonata

2011 Hyundai Sonata – Click above for high-res image gallery

Hyundai is movin’ on up. According to The Detroit News, the Sonata officially displaced the Nissan Altima as the third best-selling mid-size sedan in America last month. In August, the Korean manufacturer sold 21,399 units, falling just behind the Honda Accord at 22,506 and the Toyota Camry at a little over 30,000. Those numbers are just based on retail sales, not the vehicles that are sold off to rental fleets. The Sonata has been besting rivals like the Ford Fusion and Chevrolet Malibu for a good while now, but this is the first time the car has managed to rattle the Japanese triumvirate that dominates the segment.

It seemed to be only a matter of time, though. The Sonata now wears some of the best looking sheet metal of any midsizer out there and its price tag comes in a good bit lower than both the Accord and the Camry. Throw in a snappy interior and very efficient drivetrain options, and suddenly you’ve got the attention of the car-buying public. The Detroit News says that since the 2011 Sonata debuted, the number of car buyers considering the vehicle has leapfrogged from 6.2 percent in January of 2007 to 19.5 percent recently. Thanks for the tip, Nicolai!

Gallery: Review: 2011 Hyundai Sonata GLS


Photos by Steven J. Ewing / Copyright (C)2010 AOL

[Source: The Detroit News]

Report: Hyundai Sonata overtakes Nissan Altima for third in mid-size segment originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 21 Sep 2010 14:27:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Harrington’s half-size classics to start pint-sized car nuts early

Filed under: Classics, Etc., Mercedes-Benz, Toys/Games

Harrington Group replica Mercedes-Benz 300 SL for kids

Harrington Group’s replica Mercedes-Benz 300SL – Click above for image gallery

Want your little car nut to stand out from the neighborhood pack of wheeled terrors? Go for one of these fantastic looking half-scale classics from the Vietnam-headquartered Harrington Group, and wave goodbye to mediocre renditions of roadgoing vehicles as little Bobby (or Bobbie) cruises in style. These replicas use composite for both the body and chassis, and the detailing is good enough that they look convincingly like the real thing. Until, that is, someone steps into the picture and you get a scale reference. The company claims to have distributors in the U.S. and U.K., as well as Canada and the Netherlands.

A range of gasoline engines brings real internal combustion thunder and the sweet smell of exhaust to the party. Engines start at 50cc and can go all the way up to a terrifyingly irresponsible racing kart unit. Automatic and manual transmissions are available and there is enough room for adults to ride along with their six-year-old and up progeny. Seats and pedals adjust, too, so when Junior is asleep, you can sneak out for a spin without feeling like a circus bear riding a tricycle.

Interestingly, Harrington Group also makes restoration products for real classic cars, including stainless steel reproduction bumpers and interiors for the Volkswagen Beetle, Citroen 2CV and BMW Isetta.

Fisher Price’s Power Wheels are extravagant enough that there’s a healthy trade in used battery-powered backyard buggies. Harrington has yet to respond to an Autoblog request for pricing information, but these cars are likely to be significantly north of the $250-$400 you’ll spend on a tricked out Power Wheels at the local big box store. Available models are Porsche 356, Mercedes-Benz 300SL, Jaguar E-Type, Willys Jeep, and Bugatti T35, along with mini scooters that ape Vespas of yore. Put one of these under the tree this (fast approaching) Christmas, and you’ll see what the face of bliss looks like. Thanks for the tips, all!

Gallery: Harrington Group’s Children’s Cars

[Source: Harrington Group]

Harrington’s half-size classics to start pint-sized car nuts early originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 07 Sep 2010 14:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Rumormill: General Motors mid-size sedans going all four-cylinder

Filed under: Sedan, Buick, Chevrolet, GM

Straight from the “No Surprise” department comes word from GMInsideNews that all of General Motors mid-size offerings will come equipped with four-cylinder engines as the only available powerplant.

GM has made it clear for the last few years that a large part of its future product strategy is to downsize its engine line-up in preparation for the new 2015 CAFE standards. The shift has already begun with the introduction of the 2011 Buick Regal, available with either a 182-horsepower direct injected 2.4-liter or a turbocharged 2.0-liter putting out 220 hp and 258 pound-feet of torque.

The next model to go all-four-banger will be the next generation Chevrolet Malibu, slated to arrive late next year and likely packing – to begin with – the same 2.4-liter four. A range of direct injected engines, both naturally aspirated and turbocharged, are in the works, so the General won’t be hurting for options, but expect the V6 to stick around for GM’s larger offerings, including the next Impala.

[Source: GMInsideNews]

Rumormill: General Motors mid-size sedans going all four-cylinder originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 31 Aug 2010 18:45:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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