Auto gizmos of the week
By Ammar Alvi | ENS | Published: 24th November 2013 06:00 AM |
AT THE WHEEL | ALAN MULALLY
Known to be a tough and hard -working executive, Alan Mulally serves as the President and CEO of Ford Motor Company. The turnaround at Ford under him has been nothing short of spectacular. It has gone from posting record multibillion-dollar losses in 2006 when he took over, to five consecutive annual profits.
Mulally’s performance has been so impressive that he is a leading candidate to take over at Microsoft after CEO Steve Ballmer leaves. An American engineer and business executive, Mulally ensured Ford was the only major US car maker to avoid a government bailout fund. Mulally was the executive V-P of Boeing and the CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes (BCA). He began with Boeing as an engineer in 1969 and was largely credited with BCA’s resurgence against Airbus in the mid-2000s.
JAGUAR F-TYPE R COUPE
The Jaguar F-Type R Coupé has made its debut in Los Angeles.
The F-Type Coupé model line-up is headlined by the F-Type R Coupé, its 550PS/680Nm 5.0-litre V8 supercharged engine enabling acceleration from 0-60mph in four seconds, and a top speed of 186mph (limited). F-Type S Coupé and F-Type Coupé models complete the range, powered respectively by 380PS and 340PS versions of Jaguar’s 3.0-litre supercharged V6 engine, giving 0-60mph in 4.8/5.1 seconds and top speeds of 171/161mph.
The F-Type Coupé range complements the existing 2013 ‘World Car Design of the Year’ award-winning F-Type Convertible model line-up of F-Type,F-Type S and F-Type V8 S.
There is no question that well-designed bike lanes improve safety for cyclists by making them less likely to be hit by passing automobiles. LightLane thinks it has the solution in laser beams downward-pointing green lasers on either side of a flashing red LED tail lamp. Designed to clamp on to nearly any seatpost, as the bicycle moves forward, an instant virtual bike lane appears in bright green on either side of the rider. A single charge of the battery pack provides three hours of use, and any cell phone charger is capable of recharging the battery. Price: Rs.3,500 (approx.)
FRAUNHOFER 3D DASHBOARD
Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute are developing a 3D dashboard to show drivers where the vehicle is in relation to its surroundings. Other tidbits of information can be specified by the pilot, including a fuel gauge, speedometer, tyre pressure warning or the title of the song currently playing.
Barbeques Galore and Porsche Design Studio have worked for two years on the new X-Series Grill. Instead of the standard gas burners found in most grills, the X-Series uses four infrared burners that can crank out 52,000 BTUs using 50 per cent less fuel with 80 per cent fewer flare-ups. With a starting price of Rs.4 lakh, the grill comes with a motorised rotisserie, an LCD temp display with remote probe, and an insulated double-walled hood.
BUGATTI VELA 3 SPEED
The Vela is a decidedly modernist way to mix up your morning smoothie or evening mudslide. Looking smart in chrome (red is available, too), the style is elemental and bold. A lack of frippery brings a fresh look to an item that’s so often shaped like a plastic lump sprouting buttons. Not when you can get the Vita-Mix 5200, sporting a full 1500 watts for about Rs.25,000 list price.
PIRELLI CYBER TIRE
Pirelli’s Cyber Tire provides real-time tyre performance information via a chip/transponder setup in the tyre tread. Operating temperature and pressures, typology of the road’s surface and vertical load on the tyre will be among the data collected and monitored. The system will work with Cyber Wheel that will convey wheel information such as hub loads.