Monthly Archives: October 2016

History of Chevrolet Cars

The history of Chevrolet is well documented. Before being acquired by General Motors (GM) in 1918, the vision of Chevrolet began in 1911 by Louis Chevrolet. The advancements of Chevrolet were apparent as they went head-to-head with Ford’s Model T with the invention of the Model D, a three-speed transmission, V8 engine powerhouse that was ahead of its class at the time.

“Introduces innovation”

Innovations soon became well-known models and personal favorites among not just American drivers, but those around the world as well. The Chevrolet tradition spread from generation to generation, resulting in a number of advancements to trucks, sports cars, and the classic sedans.

Here are just a few of the ways Chevy made its mark on the American landscape, a move that continues to this day.

1. There’s a First For Everything: Things we take for granted now and see as a requirement more than an option happens with cars. With Chevrolet, they are a company that grounded its namesake in firsts. Some of their early models adopted new ways to make the car better and more accessible. As Chevy.com states in it’s company history bio, the Series C Classic Six model was one of the first cars to carry electric starters and headlamps. And as the years continued, Chevy models would go on to introduce and refine elements of the car that have become standards for today’s models. Things like anti-lock brakes, tweaked fuel injector systems and stability control were put to the test of some of their basic models, when at the time, these features were reserved for luxury lineups.

2. Performance and Recognition: It’s obvious that automakers rely on popular models to carry them through for generations upon generations. Chevy is no different. Their mark on iconic sports cars like the Corvette and savvy approach to high-performance cars like the Camaro is one thing. Their approach and commitment to trucks is the next step. The Silverado has made its mark among truck lovers and those who rely on trucks for cargo, performance and dependability, things that can be lavished upon the Silverado. It’s won numerous awards for the previously mentioned criteria, adding safety marks to the list as well. Chevy has been able to highlight what their drivers want, offering up models with best-in fuel economy, towing capabilities and best, pure-thrill rides for the driving enthusiast in all of us.

100 Years of Automotive Innovations

For the past 100 years, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway has been the home for some of auto racing’s most thrilling moments. Although the news has centered on the oval action, the behind-the-scenes activity has generated its own kind of excitement. In their efforts to gain the best speed possible, the mechanics and engineers working on the race cars have created innovations that have transitioned from Pit Row onto the highway.

In fact, the first Indianapolis 500 Mile Race in 1911 witnessed the initiation of the rear view mirror. At the time, a driver had an accompanying mechanic in the car, who would check on other drivers trailing the car. Driver Ray Harroun had a different idea. Instead of this extra passenger, he decided he could see the drivers himself if a mirror was bolted onto the front of his car. The weight of an extra passenger would be eliminated and then decrease wind resistance and increase the possibilities of greater speed. The idea helped Harroun become the first Indy 500 winner. Eventually the rear view mirror also sparked auto manufacturers’ interest. Today, it is standard equipment on every car.

Generally these early races were both testing grounds for new products and promotional tools. Manufacturers, such as Firestone Rubber Tire Company , could show the public how well its products performed. In the early to mid 1900’s, Firestone manufactured the same tires for both the track and the highway. The idea was to impress racing fans, who would then buy Firestone tires for their own vehicles. “Race on Sunday, Sell on Monday,” became Firestone’s business practice.

The Firestone tradition became entrenched with the 1925 Speedway win by Peter DePaolo. On the new Firestone balloon tires, DePaolo averaged 101.13 miles per hour without tire trouble. In fact, every one of the top ten racers had the balloon tires. Firestone’s triumph convinced the public that the new rubber balloon tires lasted longer. Plus, the tires proved to provide a more comfortable ride.

The balloon tires were only the start of manufacturers’ innovative efforts at the Indy Speedway. Through the years, they continued to improve tires, engines, and car bodies. Many of these innovations were then transferred to the public’s vehicles.

Today the racing industry is highly specialized with car mechanics and parts devoted strictly to the race car. However, the practice of promoting the best that a manufacturer can offer is still an important element of the Indianapolis 500 tradition.

Driving Conveniently With the Help of Smart Automotive

We live in the digital age where technology makes our lives easier each day. Advance medical equipments are created to help doctors treat patients, kitchen tools are innovated to make it easier for home makers, and cars are made smarter to make driving easier for humans.

Automotive electronics paved the way for helpful features like anti-lock braking systems (ABS) and automatic weather adjustments which makes driving safer and more comfortable.

Car manufacturers spend about two thousand dollars in automotive electronics for every car that comes out of the assembly line. These automotive electronics transform the car into a vehicle with better performing engine, more adaptive entertainment systems, and safety features that are far more superior than its predecessors.

Automotive Electronics of the Modern Car

o Control Area Network or CAN – There are several computers that run a modern car. The CAN is a network of computers that play vital roles in the different functions of the engine and its peripherals. The CAN serves as the bridge for the different computers so they can communicate with one another so everything are well coordinated. CAN controls the functions like cruise control, engine management, and the ABS.

o Fuel Efficiency- automotive electronics can save a car owner hundreds of dollars in fuel consumption. This is done through the EFI or Electronic Fuel Injection technology which ensures that the engine’s fuel consumption is at its optimal. In hybrid cars, a driver can easily switch from using gas and electronic power supply to run the vehicle.

o Safety Devices- Most safety system is controlled by automotive electronics. Devices like the Acceleration Slip Regulation, Traction Control, Electronic Stability and Dynamic Steering wheel ensure the safety of the driver and the passengers. The simple but complicated timing of airbags during a road collision is also controlled by advanced automotive systems.

o Added Features- Some cars today can even park themselves without any assistance from the driver. All the calculations are done by a computer making sure the car will not hit anything by making references to other cars and different objects in its surrounding.

One cannot imagine the evolution that took place with automotive electronics. The Apollo 11 which landed on the moon ran on a memory which is 150 kilobytes only. The sound systems of our cars today are running on 500 kilobytes of memory to ensuring our entertainment pleasure. Automotive electronics have gone far beyond entertainment and enhanced modern day vehicles in terms of safety, efficiency, and convenience.

The automotive industry projects billions of investments and sales in developing cars that are smarter, more fuel efficient and more environment-friendly in the future. Modern cars can be the answer to alleviate the adverse condition of the environment and the rising price of fuel all over the globe.

Cars are being developed to scan the traffic, the road, and all hazards so it can drive itself while the driver can do anything that he wants while in motion. The future cars can think for themselves with the aid of advanced automotive electronics. In that way, driving will be more than getting from one place to another.

BMW Provides Excellence

The Bavarian Motor Works company is headquartered in Munich, Germany and represents German engineering at its finest. BMW is the parent company of Rolls Royce and is the owner of the MINI brand. Since the company’s inception in 1916, the company has been a standard bearer for luxury and performance, a tradition that has carried through two world wars, the present and promises to carry on into the future.

British Motor Works began this storied history with the production of aircraft engines rather than car engines. The first noteworthy engine produced was the BMW IIIa inline-6 aviation engine. The success of this engine late in World War 1 along with significant advances made in a number of other prototype inline-6 engines is said to have influenced the design logo for BMW. The circular blue and white BMW logo is said portray the movement of an airplane propeller, to signify the white blades cutting through the blue sky. It was officially adopted by BMW in 1929. Whatever the significance on the logo, after World War 1, the Versailles Armistice Treaty was enacted and BMW was forced to cease production of aircraft motors. They turned instead to production of motorcycles and car engines. The thirties brought a new era to Germany and rearmament began in earnest. The treaty was dissolved and BMW began producing aircraft for the Luftwaffe. Several successful aircraft engine designs were produced by BMW during World War 2 including the BMW 801 air cooled radial engine and the revolutionary 003 axial flow turbo jet.

Although BMW had gone back to producing aircraft engines, it never completely dropped the motorcycle and car engine line. By 1959, they were beginning to experience financial difficulties and was contemplating halting production of car engines altogether. A last ditch attempt to salvage the automotive was decided upon, and the decision was made to explore the economy car market. The venture enjoyed enough success to put the manufacturer back on its feet.

Gradually BMW began to move toward the luxury car market and by 1980 its success in the arena had been established. BMW had established itself as a car manufacturer known for high end quality, as well as indulgence and was now a solid rival to its chief competitor, Mercedes-Benz.

BMW acquired the Rover brand in 1994 in order to compete in the SUV market; however it was unable to make any progress in halting the sliding sales of the Rover. BMW broke up the Rover Company and sold the MG division to a Phoenix consortium while Ford acquired the Rover label.

BMW retained the rights to the classic mini and subsequently began a redesign of the car. The new MINI, spelled with all capital letters to distinguish it from the classic mini, was introduced in 2001 and was an instant success. The popularity of the MINI in the United States shows that BMW has the ability and vision to move outside the boundaries of current car production and promises to introduce some of the most exciting cars seen to date. As the company prepares to celebrate its centennial anniversary, one can only imagine what it may think of next.