Video: TMG’s super Lexus LS Sports 650 gets track tested

Filed under: Motorsports, Sedan, Performance, Videos, Lexus, Luxury

XCAR drives the Lexus TMG Sports 650 on track.

The people at Toyota Motorsport GmbH have been responsible for the Japanese automaker’s motorsports efforts since the 1970s, but since Toyota pulled out of Formula One after the 2009 season, the tuning shop has been developing a super sedan based on the Lexus LS called the Sports 650. Details on TMG’s first road car have been scarce, but XCAR was recently invited to drive the 641-horsepower Lexus on track.

Here’s what we know: the Sports 650 has enough power to sprint to 60 miles per hour in under four seconds, tops out at 199 mph, weighs over two tons and utilizes LFA brakes. Oh, and its twin-turbo V8 bellows like an AMG V8. That last part isn’t surprising when considering TMG could become Toyota’s in-house tuning arm – like AMG is to Mercedes-Benz. As for the bespoke body kit, fender flares and stacked exhaust pipes? They fit the car well and even remind us a bit of Lexus’ other high-performance sedan, the IS F. Currently there are no plans for the Sports 650 to be made into a production car, but we doubt TMG is devoting this much effort developing the LS into a road-rocket for nothing.

Check out XCAR‘s video below to see the AMG-fighter wrung out on track, and then ponder what could be if TMG were let loose to fiddle with other cars in Lexus’ lineup. Now that’s something we could get used to!

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TMG’s super Lexus LS Sports 650 gets track tested originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 05 Sep 2013 19:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Video: TMG’s super Lexus LS Sports 650 gets track tested

Filed under: Motorsports, Sedan, Performance, Videos, Lexus, Luxury

XCAR drives the Lexus TMG Sports 650 on track.

The people at Toyota Motorsport GmbH have been responsible for the Japanese automaker’s motorsports efforts since the 1970s, but since Toyota pulled out of Formula One after the 2009 season, the tuning shop has been developing a super sedan based on the Lexus LS called the Sports 650. Details on TMG’s first road car have been scarce, but XCAR was recently invited to drive the 641-horsepower Lexus on track.

Here’s what we know: the Sports 650 has enough power to sprint to 60 miles per hour in under four seconds, tops out at 199 mph, weighs over two tons and utilizes LFA brakes. Oh, and its twin-turbo V8 bellows like an AMG V8. That last part isn’t surprising when considering TMG could become Toyota’s in-house tuning arm – like AMG is to Mercedes-Benz. As for the bespoke body kit, fender flares and stacked exhaust pipes? They fit the car well and even remind us a bit of Lexus’ other high-performance sedan, the IS F. Currently there are no plans for the Sports 650 to be made into a production car, but we doubt TMG is devoting this much effort developing the LS into a road-rocket for nothing.

Check out XCAR‘s video below to see the AMG-fighter wrung out on track, and then ponder what could be if TMG were let loose to fiddle with other cars in Lexus’ lineup. Now that’s something we could get used to!

Continue reading TMG’s super Lexus LS Sports 650 gets track tested

TMG’s super Lexus LS Sports 650 gets track tested originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 05 Sep 2013 19:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Torture-tested Ford EcoBoost V6 engine torn down at Detroit Auto Show

Filed under: Detroit Auto Show, Truck, Ford

Ford EcoBoost engine teardown

Exactly as promised, Ford sent a couple of technicians to the show floor at the 2011 Detroit Auto Show in front of a live audience to disassemble the 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 engine that was torture-tested for the equivalent of a few hundred thousand miles of rigorous duty on the dyno and in the engine bay of various F-Series trucks.

How’d it fair? Rather well, we’d say, and it managed to churn out 364 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque on the dyno after all the abuse it took. That matches up rather well with the factory ratings of 365 horses and 420 lb-ft.

As you might expect, there was a good amount of carbon build-up on the piston crowns and the valves – think of how much dust was surely ingested over the course of 1,062 miles of the Baja 1000 race, which this engine took part in, finishing first overall in its class – along with a 13-percent loss on one cylinder during the leak-down test. All other initial measurements were well within factory tolerances, and Ford will continue testing each individual piece from this engine to ensure its durability.

No doubt about it, this is an impressive showing for the EcoBoost engine. See plenty more pictures and a first-hand recounting of the tear-down process at PickupTrucks.com.

[Source: PickupTrucks.com]

Torture-tested Ford EcoBoost V6 engine torn down at Detroit Auto Show originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 17 Jan 2011 17:52:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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First pickups tested using NHTSA’s new crash testing system

Filed under: Truck, Government/Legal, Safety, Chevrolet, Dodge, GM, GMC, Toyota

2011 Dodge Ram crash test

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration rolled in the first batch of pickup trucks to be tested using its latest Five-Star New Car Assessment Program. Three trucks were tested: the 2011 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 (this truck’s scores were also applied to the nearly identical GMC Sierra 1500), 2011 Ram 1500 and Toyota Tacoma.

Of the trucks tested, the pair from General Motors recorded the best scores, earning a Combined score of four stars. The 2011 Tacoma also managed a Combined score of four stars, but performed significantly worse than the GM trucks in NHTSA’s front crash testing, taking home just two stars for the passenger.

Bringing up the rear in this round of testing is the Ram 1500 (non-Heavy Duty). While Chrysler’s full-size pickup managed a Combined rating of three stars, it floundered in the agency’s tough new pole test with just one star being awarded. Check out PickupTrucks.com for more analysis on the results, and search NHTSA’s full 2011-model-year crash testing database here.

[Source: NHTSA via PickupTrucks.com]

First pickups tested using NHTSA’s new crash testing system originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 24 Nov 2010 14:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Dyno Tested: BMW’s past and present turbo sixes

Filed under: Coupe, Sedan, Performance, BMW, Luxury

2010 BMW 335i Sedan – Click above for high-res image gallery

BMW has always had a gem of an inline-six on its hands, regardless of which particular powerplant you’re referring to. But over the last couple of years, it’s the German automaker’s turbocharged 3.0-liter N54 engines that have been lighting enthusiasts hearts afire, and steering more than a few buyers away from the M3 and into the seat of a 335i. And when the N54 proliferated across the rest of the automaker’s lineup, it was well-received in nearly every application.

For 2011, though, there’s a new engine in town, and the big question is whether or not the single-turbo N55 is better than the previous twin-turbo N54 or, at the very least, not worse. Helping shed some light on the matter is the crew from Automobile Magazine, who managed to snag a trio of various N54-powered 3-Series’ – one of which was the hotted-up 2011 335is, which uses a high-output version of the old N54 – along with one new model powered by an N55.

And the results? Well, it’s pretty much more of the same: good peak horsepower (266 horses) and a nicely flat mid-heavy torque curve, cresting at a stout 302 pound-feet. But we’d be remiss if we didn’t point out that the new N55, while seemingly offering less turbo lag than its predecessor, appears to be a wee bit less powerful overall than the N54. Progress?

Gallery: Review: 2010 BMW 335i Sedan

Photos by Zach Bowman / Copyright (C)2010 AOL

[Source: Automobile Magazine]

Dyno Tested: BMW’s past and present turbo sixes originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 13 Sep 2010 19:26:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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