Cars

Daytona Rising: Reinventing a NASCAR icon

Daytona Rising: Reinventing a NASCAR icon

NASCAR. That’s just over-powered cars going in a circle for hours, right? As the Daytona 500 reaches its horsepower-heavy crescendo today, it’s the iconic racetrack, the Daytona International Speedway, which is sharing a little more of the spotlight than usual. Coaxing fans out from their living rooms and the surfeit of entertainment options there isn’t a unique problem in sports, but it’s one that sponsor-dependent NASCAR faces more than most. The answer is Daytona Rising, an ambitious program designed not only to renovate the grandstand but to turn the historic track into what Joie Chitwood, President of the Speedway, describes as “the first and only motorsports stadium.” I headed out to Florida to find out how new tech is bringing the race experience up to speed.

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“Caribbean’s” Verbinski to direct self-driving car race film

“Caribbean’s” Verbinski to direct self-driving car race film

Car companies, or at least a good number of them, are in a race to put out the best self-driving car of the future. Now imagine if they actually turned that into a literal race? That is somewhat the plot of an upcoming film nicknamed "Driverless Car Race", hopefully not the working title, that centers around these autonomous vehicles putting the pedal to the metal. By themselves, of course. And who will be at the helm of this film? None other than Gore Verbinski of thrice the Pirates of the Caribbean fame.

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Volvo self-driving Drive Me cars coming 2017, in Sweden only

Volvo self-driving Drive Me cars coming 2017, in Sweden only

When it comes to autonomous cars, Volvo isn't probably one of those that readily come to mind. And yet the car maker might be closer to that goal than you might think. In two years time, Volvo plans to have a fleet of 100 self-driving vehicles under its Drive Me program running down the Gothenberg's highways. While the car's redundancy and failsafe mechanisms might make it sound like a safer bet, there is one catch. Volvo's cars will be available in Sweden only, at least initially.

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Car Hackers meld 90s Bronco with Ford Raptor

Car Hackers meld 90s Bronco with Ford Raptor

OJ made the plain white Bronco something of an icon in his slow speed chase years ago. Some car geeks have taken a Bronco that looks much like the one that OJ drove and hacked it up to make something very cool that you probably won’t see again. What started as a 1993 Ford Bronco is now a Frankenstein monster of a vehicle with the heart of a 2011 Raptor.

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With 200-strong team, Apple “Titan” EV to be ready by 2020

With 200-strong team, Apple “Titan” EV to be ready by 2020

Rumors and leaks about Apple's electric vehicle, which may or may not be self-driving, just keeps on pouring in. Apple has been known to eye cars but, until recently, everyone presumed it was just for in-vehicle infotainment systems. Now insider sources are revealing just how aggressive Cupertino's automobile push really is, saying that the iPhone maker is eying a 2020 deadline for its rumored Titan EV. That is, of course, if it manages to overcome not just technological hurdles but recent new legal problems as well.

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Apple faces lawsuit over EV battery expert poaching

Apple faces lawsuit over EV battery expert poaching

Apple's electric car project may only have been grist for the rumor-mill for a week, but it's already landed the firm in legal hot water over alleged expert-poaching. Speculation about the so-called "Project Titan" underway at a secret facility near Apple's Cupertino headquarters has so-far centered on intermingling rumors of EV powertrains and self-driving technology. However, according to battery maker A123 Systems, some of the skills that are helping those projects came as a result of a targeted campaign by Apple to grab the firm's staff. Now, it's decided to take it to the courts.

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Rolls-Royce is building a super-SUV

Rolls-Royce is building a super-SUV

Hold onto your top hats: Rolls-Royce is making an SUV, and if the luxury marque's track record in opulence and excess is anything to go by, little this side of a Bentley Bentayga will eclipse it in the parking lot. In fact, the car firm's breathless announcement that it's wading into a new segment even keeps "SUV" itself at arm's distance, preferring instead to refer to its "Effortless Everywhere" abilities, desert-storming off road intentions, and of course near-ridiculous quantities of high-luxe outfitting. We don't know what it's called, but we can guess it'll be expensive.

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Sri Lanka’s Vega is a 900 hp all-electric supercar

Sri Lanka’s Vega is a 900 hp all-electric supercar

When it comes to electric vehicles, perhaps Tesla is the name that most often pops up in conversations. In fact, when it comes to cars in general, majority of the names and brands are located in the West, with a few notable exceptions. Sri Lanka, however, doesn't want to simply accept the status quo and wants to prove that the tiny South Asian nation can also innovate and deliver in that field. And this Vega luxury sports car may very well be the proof that it needs.

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Rinspeed Budii self-driving car is a mix of tech and strange

Rinspeed Budii self-driving car is a mix of tech and strange

We've seeing an increasing number of technologies being integrated into cars, but sometimes we wonder when is too much, well, too much. Rinspeed, a Swiss automaker that specializes in putting out concept cars, may have just reached that peak. Budii, it's latest concept, incorporates many of the technologies and features you might want to see in the car of the future. But it does so in a way and in a design that leaves you scratching your head, wondering what happened on the drawing board.

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Google and Apple car plans face Benz boss skepticism

Google and Apple car plans face Benz boss skepticism

Apple's car ambitions may have burst into the headlines over the weekend, as chatter surfaced of a hundreds-strong team working on EV and autonomous vehicle tech, but some of the old guard in automotive aren't so convinced we'll see an iCar any time soon. In fact, Daimler chief executive Dieter Zetsche predicts, despite public and private projects underway by Google and other tech luminaries, he sees their collective goal as more about disrupting traditional vehicle technology without going so far as to create four-wheeled alternatives of their own. However, while Zetsche is all for figuring out ways to co-exist and collaborate with tech firms, he's also cautious about giving them too much access to drivers.

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