CARS

03. 5.2008

Dress your car like the Easter Bunny

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When you think about it, the cars parked outside the house must be fuming over what goes on inside during the holidays. Balloons and streamers for birthday parties, wreaths and stockings for Christmas, tablecloths and autumn-colored centerpieces for Thanksgiving. "The house gets everything!" the cars are saying beneath their honking. And they're right. Sure, they get fed, cleaned, and tuned up from time to time, but that's hardly a celebration.

Silence their (g)rumbling engines this Easter with a pair of 16" plush ears to hook over their windows and a 4.5" pink nose to wire to their grilles. Be careful what you wish for, eh, cars?

Available for $15.95 from What on Earth.

Via bookofjoe.

Posted by Jenn    Category: cars
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02.22.2008

Stainless steel ice scraper for your wallet

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I live in a snow-less state (Hawaii), so I can't relate to those who have ruined their credit cards by using them as ice scrapers. I don't even know what an ice scraper is! We use squeegees on our windshields occasionally, but that's about the extent of our winter-weather tools here.

Even so, I can still see the value in something like this Wallet Ice Scraper (£5) from Touch of Ginger. I wonder if it'll cut through a coconut . . .

Via Daily Gadget.

Posted by Jenn    Category: accessories | cars | novelty
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01.16.2008

Solar-powered car may hit the market within a year

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The illustration looks like a photo of a Playmobile car, but it's a drawing of a prototype solar-powered car out of Taiwan, which may hit the market within a year. Created by a team at Taiwan's National Kaohsiung University of Applied Sciences to participate in the 2007 Panasonic World Solar Challenge, this car's design is based on a one-seated race car model, but modified for the consumer market. The final product will be capable of speeds up to 70km/hr (about 43.5 miles/hr, half the speed of the race car version).

The lightweight vehicle will run for three hours on several hours of sunlight exposure through its solar panels. And, unlike some existing European solar-powered cars, the Taiwan model will be half the weight (250kg) at half the cost ($25,000). At a diminutive 3.5m by 1.3m, it'll be easy to park on city streets.

Via Inhabitat and Tapei Times.

Posted by Hoyun    Category: cars | eco
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01.11.2008

Tata Motors unveils the world's cheapest car

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As promised, Indian car maker Tata Motors created history at the Auto Expo in New Delhi yesterday by unveiling the Tata Nano - the world's cheapest car, priced at $2,500! Sounds impossible, doesn't it ? Well, it is true, and contrary to what one might think, the Nano happens to be sleek and sexy too. The "People's car" is a compact, albeit spacious, 4-passenger, 630cc vehicle which boasts a mileage of 50 miles per gallon and complies with Euro IV emission norms.

The Nano, which has been in the making for 4 years, has endured much skepticism and controversy from rivals. Well, no surprise then that these rivals are now scuttling to keep up with the price competition, a benchmark that the Nano has now redefined. Speaking to a packed audience spilling out onto the roads (with several people even ready to place their orders), chairman Ratan Tata said "a promise is a promise," referring to the tough pricing goals that the car had to stick to in the face of the rising costs of raw materials such as steel and rubber. How did they do it? With ingenious technology (with 34 new patents) that, among other things, uses lighter steel and a smaller engine to keep the costs down.

The Nano basic will sell for $2,500 (before taxes), other models such as the air-conditioned deluxe model will vary in price up to $4,000. The cars are also expected to target the foreign markets in Africa, Latin America, and Asia soon. Check out the first glimpses in this video.

Posted by kanchana    Category: cars | current affairs
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01. 7.2008

CityCar paves the way for smart parking

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Trust a group of engineers at MIT to come up with a one-of-a-kind solution to the ubiquitous problem of parking congestion in urban areas – the smart CityCar. No, it's not just another "smart" car - the two-passenger CityCar is foldable, stackable and 360-degrees rotatable! And if that weren’t enough, being an electric car, it's non-polluting as well.

The idea behind the CityCar is to create a network of stackable cars at key points (such as near subway stations and buslines) within a city so that one can just rent out a car from the stacked pool for immediate use. In other words, the cars would be stacked one after the other, much like the shopping carts at a grocery store. All you would have to do is rent out a car (presumably the first one) from the stack, and once you're done with it, stack it again at the nearest available point. Cool, huh?

I think the CityCar would be an ingenious way to encourage people to use public transportation. Not to mention, the extra thrust this will give to the electric vehicle revolution if it ever becomes reality.

Via TechEBlog. Image courtesy CNET News.

Posted by kanchana    Category: cars | design | eco
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01. 2.2008

Waterless car wash in a bottle

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The exterior of my car is rarely clean; I try to keep it just grime-free enough to fly under the radar of anyone who might be tempted to etch "wash me" on the door. I'm doing my part for the environment - a typical professional car wash uses 20 to 45 gallons of water, while a home car wash uses 80 to 140 gallons.

Now there's a waterless car wash option, and it doesn't even require that you waste gas driving away from home to use it. Green Earth Waterless Car Wash is a product in a spray bottle. You spray your car with it (car can be dry or wet), and it dissolves dirt automatically without rinsing. A 32 ounce spray bottle costs $23 and will last through 7 to 10 washes. Containing organic soap and surfactants, the product is biodegradeable, free of dyes, fragrance, Paraben and VOCs.

My question: Can you use it to wash the outside of your house, windows and all?

Via CNET's Green Tech Blog.

Posted by Hoyun    Category: cars | eco
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11. 1.2007

A rich ride - Scooter Couple

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Don't know what to buy your rich nephew who has everything? Does he have this three-wheeled scooter coupe, which, if you floor it can get to 30 mph? With its 1 1/2 gallon fuel tank, this baby can cruise up to 100 miles for two riders (up to 400 lbs. total). The Scooter Coupe is available in red, yellow, green, or blue.

It features a chrome dashboard, automatic transmission with independent all-wheel suspension, and shock absorbers that provide a smooth ride on its 13″ alloy wheels; rubber tires and two-point restraint seatbelts for safe driving (unlike most scooters).

You know what they say about asking the price . . . but we'll tell ya anyway. It will put you back $6,000 big ones Daddy Warbucks and you can buy it at Hammacher Schlemmer.

Via Born Rich.

Posted by Evan    Category: cars | luxury | toys
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10. 2.2007

Shoprider Flagship: Tiny scooter car

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This looks like a cool, recreational vehicle, but is actually a four-wheel covered, electric scooter made for people who need assistance with getting around. The advantage is that it's covered with a canopy and removable doors, so it protects the rider from the elements (even has windshield wipers), and of course, it's very stylish. Equipped with headlights with turn signals, front and rear suspension, it travels at a maximum speed of 10 miles per hour. The weight limit is 350 pounds. The only problem might be that it's too eye-catching - how do you keep other people's grubby paws off of it.

The Shoprider Flagship scooter retails for $6,595 at Amazon, and comes in blue or red.

Via OhGizmo!

Posted by Hoyun    Category: body | cars
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08.27.2007

The DeLorean Returns

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Since I won’t cop to watching the annoyingness that is any Back to the Future movie, I have to admit to what is perhaps a greater evil… which is having spent a significant portion of my free time last week watching most of the just-released DVD set of season two of Dynasty. Either way, I’d be guilty of something described by using the phrases “cheesy” and “80s” in the same sentence.

What does scream “80s”, but maybe not so much “cheesy” is the car featured in both Back to the Future and in Dynasty’s season two, the DeLorean, complete with gull-wing doors and brushed stainless steel body.

And I’m expounding on this why? Because the DeLorean is back! Actually, in the mind of some enthusiasts, they have never gone away. But, now there really is a second coming. DeLorean Motor Car (DMC) is gearing up for a new production run of the unique automobile with initial availability expected in Q1 of 2008. DMC’s website shows immediate availability for rebuilt DeLoreans on a made-to-order basis. But 2008 looks like it will usher in a whole new era, including updated interiors and better engines. Estimated price? $57,500. Mad scientist and geeky kid (Back to the Future) or evil, scheming, man-whore psychiatrist with a hidden agenda (Dynasty) not included.

Via Gizmodo.

Posted by Brian    Category: cars
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08.22.2007

Corndog air freshener covers up that new car smell

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Okay, show of hands: who else ate corndogs for dinner last night?

I can't be the only one whose husband was in charge of dinner. Even though I'm not capable of much else either, I still had to laugh when he presented me with a plateful of microwaved appetizers from the freezer: mini corndogs, pizza rolls, and these rather lovely baby breakfast sausages wrapped in maple-infused pancakes. A far cry from a healthy, balanced meal, sure, but without it, I would've completely overlooked this 99-cent Corndog car air freshener from The Restless Mouse Company.

And then how else would you fill your entire car with that "delightfully tangy scent of mustard"?

Via Nerd Approved.

Find it at thefind.com

Posted by Jenn    Category: cars
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