Thursday, September 06, 2007

Why You NEED To Vote For Fred Thompson

Taken from his formal presidential candidacy announcement video on YouTube:

"... That government should have it's power divided not only at the federal level, but between the federal government and the states. Federalism is the belief that not every problem should have a federal solution, essentially it's about freedom. A government that's big enough to do everything for us, is powerful enough to do anything to us."

"Nuf said!


Monday, August 27, 2007

Football Is Right Around....

...the corner! And with that, some interesting facts from the latest issue of Popular Mechanics.

Al look at the G Force scale relative to a football hit:

Walking - 1.0g
Sneezing - 2.9g
Shuttle Launch - 3.0g
Coughing - 3.5g
Slap on the Back - 4.1g
Roller Coaster - 5.0g
Hopping off a Step - 8.1g
F-16 Fighter Jet Roll - 9.0g

Neat. Now the interesting stuff.

A concussion can occur from a hit impact above 100g. An extreme football impact can reach 150g, probably why there are over 100 concussions recorded each NFL season. Ouch.

Even more interesting... the new grass in Philly's new stadium has a cushy G-Max absorption rating of just over 60. Synthetic surfaces have a G-Max rating of up to 120. The hardest surface to play on? Frozen tundra. Go Pack!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

JD Power's Skewed Reports

So last week, JD Power and Associates came out with most dependable brand reports. You may have read a story about it in the paper or online. Today, on MSN's homepage they were highlighting the story. What is interesting is what they left out of the story.

"For the first time in 12 years, Lexus is no longer alone as the most dependable brand—for 2007 it shares that honor with Buick."

Excellent. It's great to see such a storied, although rather boring, American car company at the top. More importantly, sharing the top spot with Lexus, a very prestigious brand with a very prestigious price tag. But, read on...

"Buick and Lexus both had a score of just 145 problems per 100 vehicles. This compares to the industry average of 216 PP100. Lexus vehicles also ranked highest in more categories than any other vehicle this year. Top scoring Lexus vehicles included the GS 300/GS 430, Lexus LS 430, Lexus LX 470 and Lexus SC 430."

But what are the top scoring Buicks? Why don't they list them? Is MSN biased? No. Buick doesn't make them anymore. Peter D. and the boyzzz at AutoExtremist fill us in on the details from their "On The Table" article.

"The bad news? The two Buick vehicles that delivered the results - the Century and Regal - are no longer being built."

Interesting. The MSM has the perfect opportunity to bash one of their favorite punching bags, the American auto industry, and they drop the ball. If it looks like a fish, smells like a .... You know, it's fishy.

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Thursday, August 09, 2007

The Chinese Are Coming!!!

Not so fast. Really, don't go fast in their cars. Ever. You will most certainly die if you hit something.

Recently, AvtoRevu, a Russian "Car and Driver" if you will, funded independent crash test research on Chery's top selling sedan in Russia, the Amulet(pictured below). The crash test was a 64km(approximately 40mph) off set front crash test. On a scale of 0 to 16, the car earned a 1.7. Only one vehicle in the lab's 39 year existence fared poorer, a Russian built model that earned a 0 in 2001. According to the reveiw in AvtoRevu, the Amulet's front door sills "crumpled like newspaper" and "We have never seen such terrible deformation of a car's body." WSJ reports that AvtoRevu stated "...the test dummy became so entwined with the wreckage of the car that it had to be removed piece by piece."

Interesting. Chery, of course, claims the tests were funded by OAO Avtovaz, a Russian car manufacturer and Chery's largest competitor. According the to WSJ article, "Chery officials were present during the test, on April 27, but at the time they didn't cite any specific deficiencies in the procedure. A Chery representative said this was because they were there only as observers, and protocol precluded them from making comments." Furthermore, "The magazine, which paid the lab to conduct the test of the Amulet, rejected any claim of bias; it said the test was "200% independent," and says it has no affiliation with any manufacturer."

So Chery hired the commercial arm of the U.K. government's Vehicle Certification Agency to test the car at Chery's headquarters in Shanghai. The test was full frontal, not partial, ran at 56km, not 64km, the vehicle was equipped with an airbag and the crash barrier was less rigid. It passed. Shock!

I have an idea for the Chery execs, why not make a better car? A safer one perhaps? Your feeble attempt at a cover up is obvious, blatant, dangerous and irresponsible. The American public, nor our government, will never accept something as ridiculous as this. Good luck trying to make it in this market. As Peter D. might say, I think it's

In your defense, the Shenyang Brilliance Jinbei Automobile Co.'s Brilliance BS6 sedan, which was tested last month in Germany, was described as "catastrophic."

Check out the video below. I guarantee you will be as shocked as I am.

HT: WSJ, Peter D. at AE

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Friday, August 03, 2007

A "Bigger" Mini

I have to disagree, for once, with Peter DeLorenzo and the boyzzz at

In their August 1st online issue of "On The Table," they seem to like BMW's move in offering the new Mini Clubman model for the '08 model year. At 9.5" longer, offering two passenger side freestyle doors and a rear barn door tailgate, BMW, in my opinion, has forever tarnished an iconic vehicle.

Making a "bigger" Mini is the true definition of oxymoron, a word some might use to describe the executives behind the model at BMW. Here are the pics, you decide.

HT: AutoExtremist, AutoWeek

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