Fun as lobbing cars around using a PlayStation controller is, both in games and in real life, if you want to be posting blistering, leaderboard-topping times on GT Sport when it arrives this week, you’ll need a force feedback steering wheel to plug into your PS4. As it happens, Thrustmaster has got you covered. No giggling about the name at the back. The Thrustmaster TGT is the latest piece of officially licensed sim-racing hardware to arrive for PS4 and it brings with it a few features designed specifically for the latest Gran Turismo. Most notable is the addition of four pleasingly tactile rotary selectors, that allow you to twiddle with your traction control, brake bias and even torque split in the middle of a heated race. This should all be particularly useful in wet weather races, though try not to accidentally slither onto the gravel because you’re busy trying to set a series link timer for Neighbours. The TGT also features what Thrustmaster is calling Depth … [Read more...] about This is GT Sport’s new £650 steering wheel
Shaking steering wheel when braking
Muscle cars might have been quick in the 0-60 department, but the 60-0 department was a whole other story. What was considered pretty cutting edge on the best performance muscle cars in the 1960s (Shelby, Z/28, Boss, etc.) would be bottom of the barrel today. In stock form, most can’t even touch the numbers of a modern generic four-door sedan with all-season tires. Even worse, the four-wheel drums in most run-of-the-mill muscle cars will get you in serious trouble in an emergency braking situation surrounded by newer cars. Of course, none of them would be considered acceptable for any serious hard driving with lots of repeated heavy braking, especially with higher-powered engines or stickier tires. For a dose of reality, we took our stone-stock, four-wheel manual drum-equipped ’68 Mustang shod with 17×8 and 17×9.5 Vintage Wheel Works V50 wheels and Nitto NT05 tires out for a few 60-0 deceleration tests. Our very best result was 210.4 feet. Read that number again … [Read more...] about Wilwood’s SL6 Disc Brake Conversion
It all goes quiet at the end. So quiet you see people shaking their heads and tugging their earlobes, wondering if they’ve suddenly gone deaf. After 24 hours of thundering, whining, wooshing race cars making a noise so loud and constant that it almost takes shape—a sonic cloud mushrooming out over the bowl of the Daytona oval and spreading like mist across the parking lots and into the hotel rooms surrounding the racetrack—the sudden cessation of racing is both a relief and a loss. Somewhere around hour 14, you came to accept your new life, a life without rest, lit by headlights and Ferris wheels, and always with that pounding soundtrack rattling the inside of your skull. It’s shocking to realize it’s over, and that your normal life, with all its soft beds and slept-through sunrises is waiting for you. “You stayed up all the whole time? Why?” a more experienced colleague asked us as we packed up after the awards ceremony. Why? To see if we … [Read more...] about Sleep When You’re Dead: Going All Night At the 2016 Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona
Automobile brakes serve one basic but very important function: They stop the vehicle. Experiencing a failing brake system while you're driving demands quick thinking and skilled maneuvering - not to mention nerves of steel - to bring the car to a safe stop. If your car needs as much space to stop as a commercial airliner, it's obviously time to have the brakes inspected. Fortunately, the brake system usually warns you that something is wrong well before this happens. Brake system basicsAll parts of a car's brake system work together to stop the car safely, and if one part isn't working the way it should, the entire system ceases to operate properly. With disc brake systems, stepping on the brake pedal puts the system in motion by activating the master cylinder, which delivers brake fluid through the brake lines to the calipers. The fluid pushes on the pistons in the calipers, which squeeze the brake pads against the rotors and slow the car down.Drum brakes operate like disc brakes, … [Read more...] about How do I know I need to get my brakes repaired?
The Japanese are about to attack the most difficult market of the lot: supercars. Domination of the small and medium-sized saloon markets, worldwide, has been accomplished. They can also check off the small coupe sector. And the big saloon market, never a Japanese forte, is about to get a worthy couple of Asian challengers, in the form of Nissan’s Infiniti and Toyota’s Lexus.But supercars are different. Japan is the world’s most successful car producing nation because Japan builds the world’s most sensible cars: good value, reliable, well researched, well equipped, tidily finished. Those values count for naught in the emotionally supercharged world of supercars. Common sense means nothing. Ditto practicality. The big master computer that helps the Japanese tap into the thought patterns of Western car buyers will blow a fuse trying to work out why people buy Ferraris and Porsches and Lamborghinis. There are no sensible reasons. No logic. Instead, what’s … [Read more...] about Bullseye! When CAR first drove the Honda NSX (CAR archive, August 1989)
McLaren's 12C Spider and Ferrari's 458 Spider share remarkable similarities: both are powered by mid-mounted V8s, both are paddleshift-only and rear-wheel drive, both use folding hard-tops, and both cost around £200,000. But the way these dream machines drive couldn't be more different. Read on for Ben Pulman's complete feature...In a summer so wet Noah should be rushing to B&Q for a saw and all the timber he can lay his hands on, a peculiar golden orb has appeared over north Wales and granted us brief sanctuary from the rain. It’s doubtful the noisy arrival of a shrieking red Ferrari and shouting yellow McLaren has scared away the inclement weather to quite the extent that chops-to-be have bounded for the woolly safety of their mothers, but regardless, the roads that ribbon across Snowdonia are dry and ready for Spiders 458 and 12C. Trick roofs fold away, embarrassing bobble hats are donned, then two evocative shapes resume their duel across this beautiful and … [Read more...] about McLaren 12C Spider vs Ferrari 458 Spider (2013) CAR Giant Test
Electrically assisted power-steering setups haven’t yet fully replaced traditional hydraulic assist in modern vehicles, but even that relatively new tech soon will be outmoded, thanks to Nissan. What could be more high-tech than electric power-steering assist, you ask? Fully electric power steering, with no mechanical link between the steering wheel and the steering rack tied to the front wheels—steer-by-wire, if you will. Nissan has developed such technology and plans to put it in a production car within a year. Wait, what?That’s right, Nissan has transferred a concept long used for throttle applications—drive-by-wire—to the steering controls; the company is calling the tech Independent Control Steering. In this case, drivers make steering inputs, and those inputs are cycled through several redundant (just in case!) computer modules before being sent to the electric motor actuating the steering rack—no mechanical steering column needed. The … [Read more...] about Nissan Develops Fully Electric Steer-By-Wire System, Will Go On Sale Next Year
From the February 2016 issue Autonomous driving—what the high-minded call artificial intelligence and what we call real brainlessness—may not be as vile as we originally feared. One DeLorean DMC-12 directed by a Stanford University engineering crew can perform perfect opposite-lock, tire-cooking, hands-off donuts at will for as long as the rubber lasts. Lead professor Chris Gerdes explained the rationale underlying this class project, timed to coincide with the fictional arrival on October 21, 2015, of the time-traveling Back to the Future DeLorean: “When we no longer have a human driver in the loop, we think that the automated vehicle should be able to harness the full range of vehicle operating capabilities to avoid collisions, even if this means going sideways a bit to stay on the road.” In other words, loading $60,000 worth of navigation gear, two powerful electric motors, and shrewd software into a 30-year-old sports car may have just fried … [Read more...] about Semi-Autonomous Cars Compared! Tesla Model S vs. BMW 750i, Infiniti Q50S, and Mercedes-Benz S65 AMG
TTAC Commentator nickeled&dimed writes:Hi Sajeev,How does one keep an old car going on a shoestring budget? I do repairs myself, which helps, but sometimes I don’t quite pull it off correctly, as my power steering belt loudly proclaims every morning when I cut the wheels to pull out of my parking spot. With a list of items that are showing wear, how do I prioritize, and how do I know when to start shopping for another 10-year used car? I like to do my own wrenching, and have a basic tool set, decent mechanical knowledge, and neighbors that don’t call the cops when I work on my car in the street outside my house. Actually all repairs take place in the street outside my house with hand tools only. This last piece, however, means that absolutely no involved repairs can take place at home.My 2000 Subaru Legacy GT Wagon has got to be one of the better cars I’ve owned. It handles nicely in the wet and snow (which has decided not to appear this winter), and it invites a … [Read more...] about Piston Slap: When To Say Uncle?
A few months ago, my esteemed colleague Ronnie Schreiber found himself in possession of a McLaren 675LT for the week. Not having a tremendous amount of personal experience with supercars, and not in a position to kill $10,000 worth of consumables in a single day at Thunderhill, Ronnie decided not to write a conventional review of the 675LT. Instead, he wrote an “Appreciation” of the Macca, eschewing the world-weary, seen-it-all shtick of the print-rag supercar review for an honest description of what it’s like to be a regular fellow who just happens to be holding the keys to something truly outrageous. Check it out, if you haven’t already read it.Last week, I had the occasion to put 515 miles on a rented close-to-base-model Chrysler 200 in about a ten-hour period. It’s safe to say that most of you don’t like Chrysler’s entry-luxury take on the Fiat Compact platform. As a matter of fact, the 200 is currently a strong contender for Mr. … [Read more...] about 2016 Chrysler 200 Limited Rental Review – An Appreciation Of An Extraordinary Automobile