Sunday, April 24, 2016

Can A Tire Have High Grip And Low Rolling Resistance?


Can a tire have high grip and a low rolling resistance? I talk with Michelin at the Shell Eco-marathon Americas to find out! When it comes to designing for efficiency, there are five major forces which a vehicle needs to overcome: aerodynamics, internal friction, gravity,  inertia, and finally, rolling resistance. 

Rolling resistance is the energy consumed by a tire as it travels over a specific distance. Energy is lost as heat when the tire deforms on the road, creating the contact patch, and then returns to its original state as the tire continues to rotate. How much energy is lost is a result of the tire’s hysteresis. 
The goal is to reduce rolling resistance while still maintaining grip. 

Silica compounds, first invented by Michelin, have low energy losses in the low frequency range, meaning low rolling resistance, but high energy losses in the high frequency range, meaning they have high grip. As a result, it truly is possible to have tires which exhibit low rolling resistance and yet all the while high levels of grip. Michelin is one of many partners that plays an important role in the Shell Eco-marathon, dedicating a manufacturing plant for two days per year just for making the ultra-low rolling resistance tires used by the teams.

The Shell Eco-Marathon is a competition where students around the globe compete to design, build, and test vehicles with the goal of creating a vehicle that goes the furthest distance using as little energy as possible. Big thanks to Shell for having me out to the event and sponsoring this video!! Check out the Shell media outlets below:

 

Saturday, December 12, 2015

2016 Subaru WRX STI Series.HyperBlue - Review & Test Drive


2016 Subaru WRX STI Series HyperBlue Limited Edition Review & Test Drive. The 2016 Subaru WRX STI Hyperblue is a limited edition with a 2.5L boxer engine producing 305 horsepower and 290 lb-ft of torque. This is sent through a 6-speed manual transmission to a driver controlled center differential, DCCD. The STI features three limited slip differentials, with a front helical LSD and a rear Torsen LSD. Major changes for the 2016 model year versus the previous generation include a more rigid chassis, stiffer suspension, torque vectoring, different seats, a nicer infotainment system, more rear leg room, a flat bottomed steering wheel, and a tighter steering ratio.

Related Videos:
2015 Subaru WRX STI - https://youtu.be/Ye_ALPQqYLg
2014 Subaru STI - https://youtu.be/X2uUW3r8YHM
2015 Subaru WRX - https://youtu.be/dVruWDgtTPg

 

Saturday, November 21, 2015

2016 Mazda Mazda6 Grand Touring - Review & Test Drive


2016 Mazda Mazda6 I Grand Touring Review. The 2016 Mazda Mazda 6 is a mid-size sedan capable of 40 mpg on the highway. The Mazda6 is powered by a SkyActiv gasoline 2.5L engine producing 184 horsepower and 185 lb-ft of torque, routed through a 6 speed automatic transmission to the front tires. Features include 19 inch alloy wheels, rain-sensing windshield wipers, heated side mirrors, heated front seats, rear lip spoiler, 8-way power drivers seat, leather-trimmed sport seats, bluetooth, paddle shifters, rearview camera, advanced keyless entry, 60/40 split folding rear seats, Bose 11 speaker sound system, heads up display, LED daytime running, fog, and taillights, power moonroof, Mazda Radar cruise control, I-ELOOP, lane departure warning, and active grill shutters. 

The Mazda6 has many superlatives as far as how efficient this vehicle is in comparison to all of the other vehicles which I’ve tested. First off, it has the highest highway fuel economy rating of any of the purely gasoline vehicles which I’ve tried out, at 40 miles per gallon. This also gives it the second highest range of any vehicle I’ve tested, at over 650 miles assuming 40 miles per gallon. At an estimated $1,400 per year, it has the lowest annual fuel cost of any non-hybrid vehicle I’ve tested. It’s the most aerodynamic vehicle I’ve tested to date, tying with the GT-R’s 0.26 drag coefficient, however having a smaller frontal area. This is also accomplished with better than average ground clearance for a sedan, at 6.7 inches. The Mazda6, along with the MX-5, has the highest compression ratio of any gasoline engine I’ve tested at 13:1, however unlike the Miata the 6 only recommends regular octane fuel. Finally, the Mazda has the best smog rating of any vehicle I’ve tested, scoring a 9 out of 10, meaning very low nitrogen oxide or hydrocarbon emissions. 

MSRP As Tested: $33,695

Related Videos:
2016 Mazda Miata MX-5 - https://youtu.be/Wh-BldfPuXo
2016 Mazda MX-5 Engineering - https://youtu.be/W9SIzxuYJWI
2016 Mazda CX-5 - https://youtu.be/jbZham9jtYc

 

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Mitsubishi Evolution X - AWD System (S-AWC, ACD, AYC)


How does the Mitsubishi Lancer Evo's S-AWC system work? How does the active center differential work? How does the active yaw control work? What are the different drive modes such as tarmac, gravel, and snow for? What is the torque split of the center differential?

The Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution features a sophisticated AWD system, using an active center differential to split torque between the front and rear, a helical limited slip differential for the front axle, and active yaw control in the rear as a result of a torque vectoring differential. 

Related Review Videos:
2015 Evo X Review - https://youtu.be/THJOpVbuRa4
Evo vs STI Review - https://youtu.be/nSWeYLzUq0I
2015 STI Review - http://youtu.be/Ye_ALPQqYLg

Related AWD Videos:
Torsen LSD - http://youtu.be/wiq1Rk5wqds
Viscous LSD - http://youtu.be/w2bRb17jJ1U
Clutch Type LSD - http://youtu.be/ujsxq9WBllU
Torque Vectoring Differential - https://youtu.be/qwwFZAbYGW0
Differentials: http://youtu.be/Hv0jYDWp0ZA
Open vs. Locked Diff: http://youtu.be/gwJEU7p9U2Q
Open vs. Locked Diff Part 2: http://youtu.be/_HOa0aRZYpw
Multi-plate Clutch: http://youtu.be/SQvFg4WbdZ4
AWD - https://youtu.be/UL9LmT3fzbQ
4WD - https://youtu.be/ZN6xHc7Nz-E
Transfer Case - https://youtu.be/K1qj8dHTmP4

 

Friday, November 13, 2015

10 Awesome Car Parts From SEMA - Specialty And Performance Parts Car Show


10 Awesome Car Parts at one of the World's Largest Car Shows: SEMA 2015. SEMA features some of the worlds most amazing cars and incredible aftermarket car parts. Walking the showroom floors, here are 10 parts I found to be particularly cool from an engineering standpoint, including a variable twin-scroll turbo,  exterior gas tanks, external damper reservoirs with fins, the Arial Atom's pushrod suspension, top mounted radiators, exhaust muffler diverter valves, electronically controlled dampers, crystalline IR blocking window film, a burning man car's suspension and inboard brakes, and finally an ice filled barrel intercooler. 

 

2016 Honda Accord V6 Manual 2DR EX-L - Review & Test Drive


2016 Honda Accord V6 Manual 2DR EX-L Review. The 2016 Accord EX-L features a 3.5L V6 engine matched with a 6-speed manual transmission, or an optional 6 speed automatic transmission. The front wheel drive Honda includes a one touch power moonroof, 18" alloy wheels, LED fog lights, LED taillights, automatic headlights, heated power door mirrors, a rear deck-lid spoiler, and remote engine start. 

This car review will cover the interior, practicality, driver ergonomics, engine, cost, driving dynamics and impressions, fuel economy overview, and a 0-60 test. 

MSRP As Tested: $31,745

 

Thursday, November 12, 2015

2016 Jaguar F-Type R Coupe Review - A Love Story


The 2016 Jaguar F-Type R Coupe features a potent 550 HP supercharged V8 engine and what is quite possibly the best 8 speed automatic transmission on the planet, courtesy of ZF. Shifts are incredibly quick, smooth, and precise. The F-Type features instinctive AWD, a switchable active exhaust system (it sounds amazing), an electronic active differential, and a super performance braking system. 

Options included on the vehicle tested include the Carbon Ceramic Matrix Braking System with 20" forged alloy wheels, carbon ceramic rotors, and yellow calipers for a cool $12,000. Other options include illuminated treadplates, the suedecloth interior pack - R, and the vision pack 3 which includes adaptive front lighting, front sensors and rear parking camera, and blind spot monitors. 

MSRP As Tested: $128,695.00