Saturday, April 28, 2012

Audi Quattro - A1 and A2

The original Audi Quattro competition car debuted in 1980, first as a development car, and then on a formal basis in the 1980 Janner Rally in Austria. Largely based on the bodyshell of the road-going Quattro models (in contrast to the forthcoming Group B cars), the engine of the original competition version produced approximately 300 bhp (224 kW; 304 PS).

In 1981, Michèle Mouton became the first female driver ever to win a world championship rally, piloting an Audi Quattro.[1] Over the next three years, Audi would introduce the A1 and A2 evolutions of the Quattro in response to the new Group B rules, raising power from the turbocharged inline 5-cylinder engine to around 350 bhp (261 kW; 355 PS). The Quattro A1 debuted at the WRC 1983 season opener Monte Carlo Rally, and went on to win the Swedish Rally and the Rally Portugal in the hands of Hannu Mikkola. Driven by Stig Blomqvist, Mikkola and Walter Röhrl, the A2 evolution won a total of eight world rallies; three in 1983 and five in 1984.

Sport Quattro

The Audi Sport Quattro S1 was a Quattro programme car developed for homologation for Group B rallying in 1984, and sold as a production car in limited numbers. It featured an all aluminium alloy 2,133 cc (130.2 cu in) (2.1 L) 20v DOHC engine slightly smaller than that of the Audi Quattro (in order to qualify for the 3-litre engine class after the scale factor applied to turbo engines). In road-going form, the engine was capable of producing 225 kW (306 PS; 302 bhp) with the competition cars initially producing around 331 kW (450 PS; 444 bhp).

The vehicle also featured a body shell composed of carbon-kevlar and boasting wider arches, wider wheels (nine inches as compared to the Ur-Quattro's optional 8-inch-wide (200 mm) wheel rim), the steeper windscreen rake of the Audi 80 (requested by the Audi Sport rally team drivers to reduce internal reflections from the dashboard for improved visibility) and, most noticeably, a 320 mm (12.6 in) shorter wheelbase.

In 1977 Ferdinand Pich (grandson of Ferdinand Porsche) Audi's Technical Development board member, had the objective to upgrade the position of the Audi brand through the introduction of innovative technology: "Vorsprung durch Technik". As an experiment, Audi engineer J�rg Bensinger developed an AWD arrangement for the Audi Iltis. Testing was not only promising but impressive. Audi's other board members wanted to promote a more stately model thus the Iltis guts into an Audi 80 and the prototype A1 (standing for "All-Wheel-Drive 1" was born. In September 1977 Audi gave engineers the green light to begin offical work on the A1 project (Development Code 262). Over the next few months the design was improved with the addition of a center differential among other changes. With only 30 minutes test-driving the car, the Finnish rally star Hannu Mikkola was convinced: "I have just experienced a convincing view of the future. Quattro will change the rally scene once and for all."

One of the most significant rally cars of all time made its introduction to the world in 1980, with the unveiling of Audi's rally contender, the Quattro. The Quattro was the first rally car to take advantage of the new rules permitting four-wheel-drive for rally competition, but there were some initial doubts about four-wheel-drive's suitability to rallying. Some thought it would be too complex and heavy to be competitive. The critics were quickly proven wrong.

The Quattro won its first rally on its first outing, the Austrian round of the European championship in 1981: the four-wheel-drive experiment was an instant success. The Quattro went on to win a couple rounds of the world rally championship, and Audi gained additional exposure when Michle Mouton won the 1981 San Remo rally, the first woman to win at the international level. The 1982 season looked set to be an Audi tour de force.

While the Audi was clearly the fastest and one of the most revolutionary rally cars in some time, it did have a number of shortcomings. The Quattro was rather heavy, its front-engine, monocoque chassis gave the car clumsy and unwieldy handling characteristics, and the car had problems with mechanical reliability. The car did win the 1982 championship for constructors, but Walter Rhrl took his first win of the year and the championship on the final event, the Ivory Coast rally, after Michle Mouton's Quattro suffered a broken transmission.

Der Audi quattro

Der Audi quattro, auch Urquattro genannt, ist ein Sportcoupé der Marke Audi, das zwischen Sommer 1980 und Mitte 1991 hergestellt wurde. Mit 11.452 gebauten Einheiten war er das erste in größeren Stückzahlen produzierte Straßenfahrzeug mit einem permanenten Allradantrieb und maßgeblich für die Erfolgsgeschichte des quattro-Antriebs von Audi sowie für den Einsatz des permanenten Allradantriebs in Straßenfahrzeugen generell verantwortlich. Zwar wurden Mitte der 1960er-Jahre bereits einige Straßenfahrzeuge mit einem permanenten Allradantrieb von Ferguson ausgestattet, jedoch mit mäßigem Erfolg. Dazu gehörten der Jensen FF, von dem lediglich 320 Fahrzeuge produziert wurden, sowie der Ford Zephyr mit Ferguson-Allradantrieb, von dem versuchsweise 22 Fahrzeuge für die britische Polizei gefertigt wurden. Aufgrund der hohen Produktionskosten wurde letztgenanntes Projekt nicht weiter verfolgt.

Die Produktion des Jensen FF wurde 1971 aufgrund mangelnder Vermarktungsmöglichkeiten ebenfalls eingestellt. 1972 brachte Subaru mit dem Modell Leone ein allradangetriebenes Straßenfahrzeug auf den Markt, welches allerdings lediglich mit einem zuschaltbaren Allradantrieb ausgestattet war. Bereits 1983 wurde die quattro GmbH gegründet, ferner war der permanente Allradantrieb optional für immer mehr Audi-Fahrzeuge verfügbar. Audi selbst bezeichnet das Modell Audi Coupé S2 als den offiziellen Nachfolger des Urquattro. [2] Das Wort quattro (ital. für vier) wird immer durchgehend in Kleinbuchstaben geschrieben. Auch das Original-quattro-Logo zeigt ausschließlich Minuskeln.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The Chevrolet Corvair


Fiat 1300 - Milletrecento - Zastava 1300 - Tristać

The Chevrolet Corvair was a compact automobile produced by the Chevrolet division of General Motors for the 1960–1969 model years. It was the only American-made, mass-produced passenger car to feature a rear-mounted air-cooled engine.

The Corvair range included two-door coupe and convertible, four-door sedan, and four-door station wagon configurations, included the more powerful Monza model – and included passenger van, commercial van, and pickup derivatives. The range competed with imported cars such as the original Volkswagen Beetle, as well as the Ford Falcon and the Plymouth Valiant, new entries in a market segment that was established in the U.S. by the Nash and Rambler American.

 The Corvair's legacy was affected by controversy surrounding its handling, which led to its inclusion in Ralph Nader's Unsafe at Any Speed. Nonetheless a subsequent National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) study concluded that the car's handling was as safe as that of its contemporaries.

Origin 1960 Corvair Assembly line – engine and suspension sub-assemblies lifted to a 700 series sedan body The Corvair name originated for a 1954 Corvette fastback show car. The car's development was directed by Ed Cole, holding chief engineer and general manager positions at Chevrolet during the 1950s. It was General Motors' response to the growing popularity of small, lightweight imported cars such as the original Volkswagen Beetle, as well as to compete with domestic-built compact cars, the Rambler American and Studebaker Lark. The "compact" term was coined by George W. Romney as a euphemism for small cars with a wheelbase of 110 inches (2,794 mm) or less.

The Corvair's design began in 1956 with the first vehicles rolling off the assembly line in late 1959 for the 1960 model year. The car was introduced October 2, 1959 initially as a four-door sedan offered in two trim levels. Two Corvairs were tested at the Riverside International Raceway in California, for 24 hours. One car rolled over, but the other completed the drive consuming only one quart (0.95 L) of oil.

The Chevrolet Corvair engine was a flat-6 (or boxer engine) piston engine used exclusively in the 1960s Chevrolet Corvair automobile. It was a highly unusual engine for General Motors: It was air-cooled, used a flat design, with aluminum heads (incorporating integral intake manifolds) and crankcase, with individual iron cylinder barrels. The heads were modeled after the standard Chevrolet overhead valve design, with large valves operated by rocker arms, actuated by pushrods run off a 9 lobe camshaft (due to the unique engine layout, exhaust lobes operated valves on *both* sides of the engine), running directly in the crankcase bore without an inserted bearing, operating hydraulic valve lifters, as used on most Chevrolet OHV engines.

The flat horizontally opposed ("flat engine") air-cooled engine design, previously used by Volkswagen and Porsche as well as Lycoming aircraft engines, offered many advantages. Unlike inline or V designs, the horizontally opposed design made the engine inherently reasonably well balanced, so that counterweights on the crankshaft were generally not necessary, reducing the weight greatly. Eliminating a water-cooling system further reduced the weight, and the use of aluminum for the heads and crankcase capitalized on this weight reduction; so that with the use of aluminum for the transaxle case, the entire engine/transaxle assembly weighed under 500 pounds (225 kilograms).

In addition, the elimination of water-cooling eliminated several points of maintenance and possible failure, reducing them all to a single point; the fan belt. As with the Volkswagen and Porsche designs, the low weight and compact but wide packaging made the engine ideal for mounting in the rear of the car, eliminating the weight and space of a conventional driveshaft.

Two years after its 1960 debut, the Corvair engine gained another unusual attribute: it was the second production engine ever to be equipped from the factory with a turbocharger, released shortly after the Oldsmobile Jetfire V8. Aircraft hobbyists and small volume builders, perhaps seeing the Corvair engine's similarity to Lycoming aircraft engines, very quickly began a cottage industry of modifying Corvair engines for aircraft use, which continues to this day.

The Corvair engine also became a favorite for installation into modified Volkswagens and Porsches, as well as dune buggies and homemade sports and race cars.

The 50 Worst Cars of All Time 

Rear-engine cars are fun to drive and even more fun to crash. While rear-engine packaging offers enormous advantages, putting the vehicle's heaviest component behind the rear axle gives cars a distinct tendency to spin out, sort of like an arrow weighted at the end. During World War II, Nazi officers in occupied Czechoslovakia were banned from driving the speedy rear-engined Tatras because so many had been killed behind the wheel. Chevrolet execs knew the Corvair — a lithe and lovely car with an air-cooled, flat-six in the back, a la the VW Beetle — was a handful, but they declined to spend the few dollars per car to make the swing-axle rear suspension more manageable.

Ohhh, they came to regret that. Ralph Nader put the smackdown on GM in his book Unsafe at Any Speed, also noting that the Corvair's single-piece steering column could impale the driver in a front collision. Ouch! Meanwhile, the Corvair had other problems. It leaked oil like a derelict tanker. Its heating system tended to pump noxious fumes into the cabin. It was offered for a while with a gasoline-burner heater located in the front "trunk," a common but dangerously dumb accessory at the time. Even so, my family had a Corvair, white with red interior, and we loved it...  - - 

  Chevrolet Corvair  vs Zastava 1300 / 1500 - Fiat milletrecento


Thursday, April 19, 2012

Citroën DS - Citroen Di - Citroen Žaba


 The Citroën DS was manufactured and marketed by the French company Citroën from 1955 to 1975. Styled by Italian sculptor and industrial designer Flaminio Bertoni and the French aeronautical engineer André Lefèbvre, the DS was known for its aerodynamic futuristic body design and innovative technology, including a hydropneumatic self-levelling suspension.

The DS advanced achievable standards in automobile ride quality, handling, and braking. Citroën sold nearly 1.5 million D-series during the model's 20-year production run. The DS came in third in the 1999 Car of the Century competition, recognizing the world's most influential auto designs, and was named the most beautiful car of all time by Classic & Sports Car magazine.
Technical innovation – hydraulic systems

In conventional cars, hydraulics are only used in brakes and power steering. In the DS they were also used for the suspension, clutch and transmission, although the later ID19 did have manual steering and a simplified power-braking system.

At a time when few passenger vehicles had independent suspension on all wheels, the application of the hydraulic system to the car's suspension system to provide a self-levelling system was an innovative move. This suspension allowed the car to achieve sharp handling combined with very high ride quality, frequently compared to a "magic carpet". The hydropneumatic suspension used was pioneered the year before, on the rear of another car from Citroën, the top of range Traction Avant 15CV-H.

Also, American luxury-car buyers at the time were conditioned to show off their new cars, the design details of which were changed every model year as a kind of stylistic planned obsolescence, but the DS' appearance did not change substantially in the 16 years it was available in the States.
US regulations at the time banned one of the car's more advanced features, its composite headlamps with aerodynamic cover lenses. At the time, all vehicles sold in the US had to have standard-size sealed beam headlamps; composite replaceable-bulb lamps weren't permitted until late 1983. And cover lenses, even clear ones, are not legal in the US. The first year of aerodynamic glass enclosing the headlamps on the DS was also the first year that feature was outlawed in the US: 1968.

La Citroën DS è un'autovettura di fascia alta prodotta dal 1955 al 1975 dalla Casa automobilistica francese Citroën.
Ancor oggi, a distanza di oltre 50 anni dalla sua presentazione, la DS non passa inosservata grazie alla sua linea estremamente anticonformista e alle soluzioni tecniche e stilistiche a dir poco rivoluzionarie.
Poche vetture hanno saputo imporsi nella storia del design automobilistico in maniera così decisa come questa vettura, oggigiorno considerata il capolavoro della Casa francese.

Presentata al salone dell'automobile di Parigi del 1955, la DS ha annoverato fin dalla sua nascita innovazioni tecnologiche che rimasero attuali sino al termine della produzione nel 1975. Alcune di esse sono state riscoperte da molte case automobilistiche solo diversi anni dopo la sua uscita di produzione.

La DS, et sa déclinaison simplifiée l'ID, fut commercialisée par Citroën entre 1955 et 1975, tout d'abord en berline puis en break et cabriolet.
Dessinée par le designer italien Flaminio Bertoni, en collaboration avec André Lefebvre, un ingénieur issu de l'aéronautique, cette automobile était révolutionnaire par bien des aspects. À l'origine, son long capot est prévu pour accueillir un moteur 6 cylindres, mais tant le 6 cylindres en ligne de la 15 que celui à plat ne purent être adoptés, pour cause de mise au point. Son nom de code était « VGD » (Véhicule de grande diffusion1) et fut l'« attraction » du salon de l'automobile en 1955. Elle est dotée d'une ligne extrêmement audacieuse, révolutionnaire et d'un confort intérieur remarquable grâce à sa suspension hydropneumatique spécifique à la marque. 

La DS comporte également de nombreuses innovations technologiques qui la démarquent du monde de l'automobile de son époque en Europe : direction assistée, boîte de vitesses à commande hydraulique, freins à disque à l'avant, pivot de direction dans l'axe et, à partir des années 1968-1969, phares pivotants et introduction de l'électronique (moteur à injection).

Friday, April 13, 2012

Lincoln Continental

Plymouth Barracuda

The Lincoln Continental is an automobile which was produced by the Lincoln division of Ford Motor Company from 1939 to 1948 and again from 1956 to 2002. Despite often sharing underpinnings with less-expensive Fords in more recent years, the Lincoln Continental had usually been a distinctively platformed and styled, highly equipped luxury car in the course of its long history.

The flagship Lincoln model during most of its run, the Continental name conveyed special cachet in the product line. During the 1980s, the Continental was downsized from a full-size to a mid-size Ford Taurus platform; this introduced the Continental to a wider range of competition from Europe and Japan. After the Continental was discontinued in 2002, it was largely replaced by the Lincoln LS and eventually the Lincoln MKS.

For 1970, the Continental received a ground-up redesign for the first time since 1961. Available again as a two-door hardtop and a four-door pillared hardtop, the Continental borrowed a number of styling cues from both its predecessor and the Continental Mark III. As before, the sides were relatively unadorned with blade-like fenders, but the door handles on 4-doors gave away the biggest change: the distinctive "suicide doors" were replaced by conventional front-hinged doors. Like the Mark III, the Continental now wore hidden headlamps. Unibody construction was replaced by cheaper body-on-frame construction; on the upside, the old rear leaf springs were replaced by coil springs.
Another major change to the Continental lay under the skin; for the first time, it shared a common platform with the full-size Ford LTD and Mercury Marquis. The 1970 model was the first time ever a standard Lincoln shared a chassis with the full-sized Fords, somewhat expected as the Ford in LTD form had increasingly marketed itself as a "poor man's Lincoln" in the late 60s. "In essence, the new Lincoln was to the Ford and Mercury what the General Motors C-Body offerings (especially the Cadillac) were to the medium priced car lines that employed the B-shell."

In mid-model year 1972, Lincoln's long history of distinct engines from its corporate counterparts came to an end as the 460 V8 became available in the Mercury Marquis and Colony Park. To move upmarket from Ford and Mercury, the full-size Lincoln product line gained two nameplates with two popular option packages. In 1970, the Town Car name (dormant since 1959) was revived; in 1973, a corresponding two-door Town Coupe was introduced. In addition to the standard Continental, the Town Car/Town Coupe offered a limousine-style vinyl top and more standard equipment. Front disc brakes were standard.
During its lifecycle, this generation of Continental saw a number of changes. From 1970 to 1974, each model year wore a different grille style. In 1973 and 1974, the Continental (to comply with federal mandate) was fitted with 5-mph bumpers in the front and rear, respectively. In comparison to the 1970 model, the 5-mph bumpers seen on 1975–1979 models left the Continental 7 inches longer.

For 1975, the 2-door hardtop model was replaced with a pillared coupe; the 4-door received a new roofline to further differentiate it from Ford and Mercury models. The Continental Town Coupe received a square opera window in its C-pillar while the Town Car received an oval one (similar to the Mark IV). Braking performance, a sore point on full-size American cars of the time, was improved as the Continental became one of the first American cars (besides the Corvette) with 4-wheel disc brakes.

Lincoln Navigator

In 1977, the grille changed from a rectangular unit to the Rolls-Royce radiator grille seen on the Mark Series; variations of this style would be used on the Continental and Town Car until 1997. The new grille was both higher and narrower than in previous years, but the position of the headlamps remained unchanged. To hold the line on price and to increase fuel economy, previously standard luxury features gradually became optional over the decade, with the 460 cu in (7.5 L) engine becoming an option in 1978, replaced in 1979 by the 400-cubic-inch (6.6 L) engine as standard. Rear fender skirts were removed for the 1978 model year. Four-wheel disc brakes were optional.
By 1979, the Continental measured 233.0 in (5,920 mm) and weighed between 4,900–5,500 lb (2,200–2,500 kg) depending on the year. After General Motors downsized its full-size product lineup for 1977, the Continental became the largest mass-market automobile produced worldwide at the time, surpassed only by purpose-built limousines such as the Mercedes-Benz 600 and Rolls-Royce Phantom VI. The 460 cid V8 was also the largest-displacement engine in any production car worldwide from 1977 to 1978.

- -

Der Lincoln Continental ist ein Automobil, das durch den Lincoln-Division von Ford Motor Company von 1939 bis 1948 und erneut von 1956 bis 2002 produziert wurde. Trotz der oft gemeinsam mit Unterbau weniger teure Fords in den letzten Jahren hatte der Lincoln Continental in der Regel eine deutlich platformed und gestylt, hochwertig ausgestattete Luxus-Auto im Laufe seiner langen Geschichte.

La Lincoln Continental est une automobile qui a été produite par la division Lincoln de Ford Motor Company de 1939 à 1948 et de nouveau de 1956 à 2002. Malgré partageant souvent fondements avec moins coûteuse Ford dans les années plus récentes, la Lincoln Continental avait en général été un distinctement platformed et de style, voiture de luxe très bien équipées dans le cadre de sa longue histoire.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

pontiac 70's

Pontiac was an automobile brand that was established in 1926 as a companion make for General Motors' Oakland. Quickly overtaking its parent in popularity, it supplanted the Oakland brand entirely by 1933 and, for most of its life, became a companion make for Chevrolet. Pontiac was sold in the United States, Canada, and Mexico by General Motors (GM). Pontiac was marketed as the performance division of General Motors for many years, specializing in mainstream performance vehicles. Pontiac was relatively more popular in Canada, where for much of its history, it was marketed as a low-priced vehicle.


Increasing insurance and fuel costs for owners coupled with looming Federal emissions and safety regulations would eventually put an end to the unrestricted, powerful engines of the 1960s. Safety, luxury and economy would become the new watch-words of this decade. Engine performance began declining in 1971 when GM issued a corporate edict mandating that all engines be capable of using lower-octane unleaded gasoline, which led to dramatic drops in compression ratios, along with performance and fuel economy. This, coupled with trying to build cars as plush as GM's more luxurious Buicks and Oldsmobiles, contributed to the start of a slow decline of Pontiac in 1971.

In mid-1971 Pontiac introduced the compact, budget-priced Ventura II (based on the third generation Chevrolet Nova). This same year, Pontiac completely restyled its full-sized cars, moved the Bonneville, and replaced it with a higher luxury model named the Grand Ville, while Safari wagons got a new clamshell tailgate that lowered into the body while the rear window raised into the roof.
1971–1976 model full-size station wagons featured a 'Clamshell' design where the rear power-operated glass slid up into the roof as the tailgate (manually or with power assist), dropped below the load floor. The power tailgate, the first in station wagon history, ultimately supplanted the manual tailgate, which required marked effort to lift from storage.
The 1972 models saw the first wave of emissions reduction and safety equipment and updates. GTO was a now sub-series of the LeMans series. The Tempest, was dropped, after being renamed 'T-37' and 'GT-37' for 1971. The base 1972 mid-sized Pontiac was now simply called LeMans.
James MacDonald left the post of general manager to be replaced by Martin J. Caserio in late 1972. Caserio was the first manager in over a decade to be more focused on marketing and sales than on performance.

For 1973, Pontiac restyled its personal-luxury Grand Prix, mid-sized LeMans and compact Ventura models and introduced the all-new Grand Am as part of the LeMans line. All other models including the big cars and Firebirds received only minor updates. Again, power dropped across all engines as more emissions requirements came into effect. The 1973 Firebird Trans Am's factory applied hood decal, a John Schinella restylized interpretation of the Native American fire bird, took up most of the available space on the hood. Also in 1973, the new Super Duty 455 engine ("Super Duty" harkening back to Pontiac's Racing Engines) was introduced. Although it was originally supposed to be available in GTOs and Firebirds, only a few SD 455 engines made it into Firebird Trans Ams that year. One so equipped was tested by 'Car and Driver' magazine, who proclaimed it the last of the fast cars. But the pendulum had swung, and the SD 455 only hung on one more year in the Trans Am.

All Federal emissions and safety regulations were required to be in full effect for 1974 causing the demise of two of the three iterations of the big 455 cubic inch engines after this year. The last version of the 455 would hang on for two more years before being discontinued.

For 1975, Pontiac introduced the new sub-compact Astre, a version of the Chevrolet Vega. This was the brand's entry into the fuel economy segment of the market. Astre had been sold exclusively in Canada from 1973. It was offered through the 1977 model year. 1975 would also see the end of Pontiac convertibles for the next decade.
The 1976 models were the last of the traditional American large cars powered by mostly big block V8 engines. After this year, all GM models would go through "downsizing" and shrink in length, width, weight and available engine size. The 1976 Sunbird, based on the Chevrolet Vega and Monza's equivalent, joined the line. It was first offered as a Notchback, with a Hatchback body style added in 1977. The Vega Wagon body style was added in 1978, Sunbird Safari Wagon, replacing the Astre Safari Wagon. The Sunbird was offered in its rear-wheel-drive configuration through the 1980 model year. (Sunbird Safari wagon through 1979.)
For 1977, Pontiac replaced the Ventura with the Phoenix, a version of Chevrolet's fourth generation Nova. Pontiac also introduced its 151 cubic inch "Iron Duke" 4-cylinder overhead valve engine. It was first used in the 1977 Astre, replacing Astre's aluminum-block 140 cubic inch Vega engine. The 'Iron Duke' engine would later go into many GM and non-GM automobiles into the early 1990s. The 151 cubic inch L4 and the 301 cubic inch V-8 were the last two engines designed solely by Pontiac. Subsequent engine design would be accomplished by one central office with all designs being shared by each brand.
The remainder of the 1970s and the early 1980s saw the continued rise of luxury, safety and economy as the key selling points in Pontiac products. Wire-spoked wheel covers returned for the first time since the 1930s. More station wagons than ever were being offered. Padded vinyl roofs were options on almost every model. Rear-wheel drive began its slow demise with the introduction of the first front-wheel drive Pontiac, the 1980 Phoenix (a version of the Chevrolet Citation). The Firebird continued to fly high on the success of the 'Smokey and the Bandit' film, still offering Formula and Trans Am packages, plus a Pontiac first- a turbocharged V-8, for the 1980 and 1981 model years. Overall, Pontiac's performance was a shadow of its former self, but to give credit where due, Pontiac Motor Division did more with less than most other brands were able to in this era.

 _ Wikipedia _

List of Pontiac vehicles

Pontiac 2+2 (1964–1970)
Pontiac 2000 (1983)
Pontiac 2000 Sunbird (1983-1984)
Pontiac 6000 (1982–1991)
Pontiac Acadian (1976–1987, rebadged Chevrolet Chevette/Pontiac T1000/1000, Canada)
Pontiac Astre (1975–1977; 1973–1977 Canada)
Pontiac Aztek (2001–2005)
Pontiac Bonneville (1957–2005)
Pontiac Catalina (1959–1981)
Pontiac Chieftain (1950–1958)
Pontiac Custom S (1969)
Pontiac De-Lux (1937)
Pontiac Executive (1967–1970)
Pontiac Fiero (1984–1988)
Pontiac Firebird (1967–2002)
Pontiac Firefly (1985–2001, rebadged Chevrolet Sprint/Geo Metro/Suzuki Cultus, Canada)
Pontiac G3 (2006–2009 (Mexico), 2009 (US), rebadged Chevrolet Aveo/Daewoo Gentra)
Pontiac G4 (2005–2009, rebadged Chevrolet Cobalt, Mexico)
Pontiac G5 (2007–2009, rebadged Chevrolet Cobalt)
Pontiac G6 (2004–2009)
Pontiac G8 (2008–2009, rebadged Holden VE Commodore, Australia)
Pontiac Grand Am (1973–1975, 1978–1980, 1985–2006)
Pontiac Grand Prix (1962–2008)
Pontiac Grand Safari (1971–1978)
Pontiac Grand Ville (1971–1975)
Pontiac Grande Parisienne (1966–1969, Canada)
Pontiac GTO (1964–1974)
Pontiac GTO (2004–2006, rebadged Holden Monaro)
Pontiac J2000 (1982)
Pontiac Laurentian (1955–1981, Canada)
Pontiac LeMans (1962–1981, 1988–1993)
Pontiac Matiz (1998–2005, rebadged Daewoo Matiz, Mexico)
Pontiac Matiz G2 (2006–2010, rebadged Daewoo Matiz, Mexico)
Pontiac Montana (1999–2005)
Pontiac Montana SV6 (2005–2006, continues in production for Canada and Mexico)
Pontiac Parisienne (1983–1986; 1958–1986, Canada)
Pontiac Pathfinder (1955–1958, Canada)
Pontiac Phoenix (1977–1984)
Pontiac Pursuit (later G5 Pursuit) (2005–2006, rebadged Chevrolet Cobalt, Canada)
Pontiac Safari (1955–1989)
Pontiac Silver Streak
Pontiac Solstice (2006–2009)
Pontiac Star Chief (1954–1966)
Pontiac Star Chief Executive (1966)
Pontiac Strato-Chief (1955–1970, Canada)
Pontiac Streamliner
Pontiac Sunbird (1975–1980, 1985–1994)
Pontiac Sunburst (1985–1989, rebadged Chevrolet Spectrum/Isuzu Gemini, Canada)
Pontiac Sunfire (1995–2005)
Pontiac Sunrunner (1994–1997, rebadged Geo Tracker/Suzuki Escudo, Canada)
Pontiac Super Chief (1957–1958)
Pontiac T1000 (1981–1987)
Pontiac Tempest (1961–1970; 1987–1991, rebadged Chevrolet Corsica, Canada)
Pontiac Torpedo
Pontiac Torrent (2006–2009)
Pontiac Trans Am (1969–2002)
Pontiac Trans Sport (1990–1998)
Pontiac Ventura (1960–1970 full-size, 1973–1977 compact)
Pontiac Ventura II (1971–1972)
Pontiac Vibe (2003–2010)
Pontiac Wave (later G3 Wave) (2004–2009, rebadged Chevrolet Aveo/Daewoo Gentra, Canada)

Monday, April 9, 2012

Classic American Cars of the 1970s

:: AMC 1970s
:: Buick 1970s
:: Buick 1970s
:: Cadillac 1970s
:: Cadillac 1970s
:: Chevrolet 1970s
:: Chevrolet 1970s
:: Chrysler 1970s
:: Chrysler 1970s
:: Dodge 1970s
:: Dodge 1970s
:: Excalibur
:: Excalibur
:: Ford 1970s
:: Ford 1970s
:: Lincoln 1970s
:: Lincoln 1970s
:: Mercury 1970s
:: Mercury 1970s
:: Oldsmobile 1970s
:: Oldsmobile 1970s
:: Plymouth 1970s
:: Plymouth 1970s
:: Pontiac 1970s

:: Panoz

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Lada Niva - Lajka - VAZ-2121 - Лада Нива

The Lada Niva or VAZ-2121 (Russian: Лада Нива, Niva (нива) is the Russian word for "crop field") is an off-road vehicle built by Soviet/Russian automaker AvtoVAZ. The car is very popular in its home country. It is also popular in Canada (though withdrawn from sale in 1998), South America, Iceland, and other regions where the terrain requires a robust and tough car for a reasonable price.

 In Australia, popularity is limited as the vehicle is manufactured for a very different climate and as such items such as air conditioning were omitted from the specifications, limiting its appeal. The car was also called the Lada Sport in Iceland and Lada Taiga in Austria. It was one of the first mass production off-road vehicles to feature a unibody architecture (the first was GAZ-M-72 in 1955), independent front suspension and coil suspension, and is a predecessor to current crossover SUVs which nearly all follow this format.

The Niva (2121) was described by its designers as a “Renault 5 put on a Land Rover chassis.”[2] It was Lada's (VAZ/AvtoVAZ) first non-Fiat based model. Much of its mechanicals are carried over from the Fiat based Lada models, though the body, four-wheel drive system, and front suspension were designed by Lada. Production began in 1977 and continues today (as of 2010) with only minor changes to the engine, rear hatch design, and interior trim levels. In basic form, the Niva has a carbureted 1.6-litre overhead cam four-cylinder petrol engine producing 54 kW (72 hp) and 126 N·m (93 lb·ft), a four- or five-speed manual transmission, and full-time four-wheel drive. The four-wheel drive system employs three differentials (centre, front and rear), similar to manual-transmission Toyota FJ Cruisers. There are no locking hubs. The transfer case involves a high/low range selector lever and a central differential lock lever. Low range can be selected with the centre differential locked or unlocked. The original Niva has a maximum speed of around 130 km/h (80 mph), and can cruise at 90 km/h (56 mph) while consuming petrol at 8.25 L/100 km (34.2 mpg-imp; 28.5 mpg-US). Its towing capacity is rated for up to 860 kg (1900 lb).

A 1.7-litre petrol engine was introduced later in production, as was single-point fuel injection supplied initially by General Motors. Around this time the rear hatch was revised to have a lower opening. Multi-point fuel injection designed by Bosch is used currently since 2004. In some markets a 1.9L Peugeot diesel powered Niva was sold. Coil springs are located at each of the four wheels, and suspension is independent in front, whereas the rear axle is a 5 link live-type, with ratios between 3.90 and 4.30 depending on the model and market. Ground clearance is good at 235 mm (9.25 in) and water 510 mm (20 in) deep can be negotiated. The brakes (disc front, drum rear) are servo-assisted dual-circuit style and the clutch is hydraulic. The turning circle, at 36.25' is adequate, while the centre of gravity is exceptional. Cargo space is 0.48 m³ (17 ft³), or 1.33 m³ (47 ft³) with the rear seats folded down. A spare tyre is located in the engine bay under the bonnet, and as with all Ladas, a 21 piece toolkit is also supplied for do-it-yourself roadside repairs. The latter feature is considered a useful and practical feature by off-road fans.

During the 1980s local Lada importers in various markets made their own upgrades to help compete with more modern SUVs. In the UK the Cossack model featured large body decals, roof rails, running boards, 15" alloy wheels, and on some versions a sunroof, steel bullbars, spotlights, a rear-mounted spare tyre and semi-bucket seats. Other markets' importers made similar upgrades and many were also called Cossack.

 In 1995, Lada UK introduced a face-lifted version of the Niva Cossack and renamed the basic model as the Hussar. Whereas the Hussar had the original 1977 trim, the new UK Cossack featured a new Rover-designed grille and other body kit items, and gained soft nudge-bars at the front in deference to public opinion against bullbars. Both models received the same new 1.7-litre engine and a new deeper tailgate which extended the rear opening to the level of the bumper - a vast improvement over the original model's high lip. Official Niva imports to the UK ceased in 1997 due to the importers having difficulty in sourcing the GM fuel injection unit required to satisfy ever-tightening UK emissions regulations. There were several attempts to reintroduce Ladas back into the UK. In May 2010, the basic Niva became available again, through an independent importer. Aimed largely at the agricultural market, three models were made available (all LHD), the 3-door 4-seat hatchback at £10,000, a 2-seat commercial van, £8000 and a 2-door, 4-seat pickup for £12,000. All meet the current UK Vehicle Certification Agency standards.

The only engine available is the 1.7 litre petrol, but this can be provided with or without a LPG conversion. VAZ-2122 Reka In 1974, when VAZ 2121 development was almost finished, the engineers from Tolyatti began working on an amphibian off-roader, VAZ 2122 'Reka' ('River') based on VAZ-2121 'Niva' underpinnings. It was intended to be sold to the Soviet Ministry of Defence. Six evolutions of prototypes were built, and much development work was done. The car was tested in an experimental military unit, on the proving grounds of the Ministry of Defence, and in the Turkmenistan Karakum Desert. VAZ-2122 received very positive feedback, by 1987 VAZ had finished all development work, and the car was ready for production. However, at the end of the 1980s, the Ministry of Defence did not have the financial resources necessary for large-scale purchases of the VAZ-2122. As a result, it was never put into mass production.  LWB Nivas Long-wheelbase versions - the five-door VAZ-2131 and three-door VAZ-2129

Plymouth Satellite


Family LADA Niva good design-design cars that bring comfort of the passenger car and SUV advantages. Increased accessibility and comfort are the characteristics of a family car. For large families or companies to ride on the road, traveling to remote places, hunting trips and fishing choose a workable and reliable family car LADA Niva. 

LADA NIVA 2131 - five-doors 4x4 vehicle, retain all their advantages car LADA NIVA 21213.
Permanent four-wheel drive, a differential lock, high ground clearance, small body overhangs allow any drive in the road.
The spacious and comfortable cabin with increased convenience for passengers back row to meet a variety of customer applications.
Nature of the wheelbase makes cars on the road and a steady increase of smoothness .
LADA NIVA 2131 Design features :
• Standard engine 21214 with gasoline, 4 times, 4 cylinders on line
• Engine rating: 7 CV
• Cubic capacity: 1690 Cm3
• Maximum power: 81 CH with 5000 rpm
• Maximum couple: 12,75 (mdaN the EEC) to 4000 rpm
• System of liquid cooling
• Lighting: electronics, with static distribution
• Distribution: camshaft at the head
• Maximum speed: 137 km/h
• Mixed consumption: 10,5 l/100 km
• Gear box to 5 reports/ratios
• Weight: 1.210 kg
• Passable slope with full load: 58%
• Power-assisted steering

LADA NIVA 2131 TechnicalSpecifications
Dimensions mm
length 4240
width 1680
height 1640
Track front / rear wheels mm 2700
Ground clearance mm 220
Mass in running condition kg 1370
The luggage compartment, m 3 0,38/0,71
Tank fuel litres 42
The tyres 175/80-16 (85R), 185/75R16 (92Q), 175/80R16
The standards for toxicity Euro-2
Body type / number of doors minivan / 5 doors SUV
The power system distributed electronically controlled injection
Fuel Unleaded gasoline AI-95 (min)
Transmission manual 5 forward, 1 back
Transfer box mechanical, with the differential lock
Time acceleration to 100 km /h s 20
Front brakes disk
Rear brakes drum

ВАЗ-2121 «Нива» — советский легковой автомобиль повышенной проходимости. Внедорожник малого класса с несущим кузовом и постоянным полным приводом. Серийно производится с 5 апреля 1977 года по настоящее время (с 2006 года - под брендом LADA 4х4.). Во многих странах существуют фан-клубы «Нивы». Специализированный портал )

Летом 1970 года председатель Совета министров СССР Алексей Николаевич Косыгин поставил перед коллективами ВАЗа, АЗЛК и Ижмаша задачу создать автомобиль повышенной проходимости с комфортом массовых легковых моделей. Были созданы прототипы АЗЛК-415 и −416 и Иж-14, но эти автомобили были не готовы к серийному производству. Конструкторы Волжского автозавода ещё на стадии разработки перенесли на перспективную модель многие узлы и агрегаты освоенных предприятием «Жигулей». Ещё одной особенностью стал полностью «легковой» дизайн автомобиля — в автомобиле не было ничего специфически «внедорожного», «Нива» выглядела как обычная легковая машина. В конструкции широко применялись элементы дизайна и детали ВАЗ-2106, а салон оказался практически идентичным этой модели. В итоге получилось, как писал один западный автомобильный журнал, «Как будто „Рено-5“ поставили на шасси „Лэндровера“». В 1972 году были созданы первые ходовые прототипы Э-2121 (так называемые «носители агрегатов»), в 1973 году было объявлено о подготовке к серийному производству, а в 1974 появились предсерийные образцы. Эти машины прошли полный цикл испытаний, в том числе, пробег по Уралу и Предуралью. Для сравнения с моделями-конкурентами специалисты воспользовались британскими Land Rover и Range Rover, а также УАЗ-469. Для оценки ходовых качеств «Нивы» совместили «легковую» и «внедорожную» программы испытаний. Приказ о постановке автомобиля на конвейер был подписан 31 июля 1975 года. Первый серийный образец ВАЗ-2121 сошёл с конвейера ВАЗа 5 апреля 1977 года. Вскоре после запуска конвейера производственный план на полноприводный автомобиль увеличили с 25 000 машин в год до 50 000 автомобилей, а далее — до 70 000 единиц. А вскоре около 80 % от выпущенных автомобилей стали отправлять на экспорт («Нива» стала единственным советским автомобилем, который продавался в Японии).

ВАЗ-2121 (21213/21214) — легковой автомобиль повышенной проходимости (внедорожник) малого класса. Кузов несущий, трёхдверный типа универсал. Трансмиссия с постоянным полным приводом, механической четырёхступенчатой коробкой передач (начиная с 21213 — пятиступенчатой), двухступенчатой раздаточной коробкой и блокируемым межосевым дифференциалом. Геометрические параметры проходимости хорошие за счёт достаточно большого дорожного просвета (220 мм), небольших свесов кузова (угол въезда 32°, съезда — 37°) и сравнительно короткой 2,2-метровой колёсной базы. На первую модель ВАЗ-2121 устанавливался двигатель ВАЗ-2121, созданный на основе двигателя ВАЗ-2106, рядный карбюраторный четырёхцилиндровый, объёмом 1580 см³. Мощность 75 л.с. при 5400 об/мин, максимальный крутящий момент 116 Н·м при 3400 об/мин. На рестайлинговую модификацию ВАЗ-21213 устанавливался карбюраторный двигатель ВАЗ-21213 с увеличенным до 1690 см³ рабочим объёмом, мощностью 80,8 л.с. при 5200 об/мин и максимальным крутящим моментом 125,3 Н·м при 3000 об/мин. Одной из особенностей «Нивы» было использование в её конструкции крупносерийных узлов модельного ряда ВАЗ. Так, от модели ВАЗ-2106 использовался 1,6-литровый двигатель с цепным приводом ГРМ, коробка передач и редуктор заднего моста (на первых «Нивах» в редукторах мостов использовались главные передачи от ВАЗ-2101 с передаточным отношением 4,3). Тем не менее, «Нива» сразу продемонстрировала уникальную для своего класса проходимость.

Большинство выпускавшихся в 70-х годах XX века автомобилей типа 4х4 оснащались жестко подключаемым полным приводом (постоянный полный привод использовался в то время только на Range Rover), рамным шасси, зависимой подвеской, упрощёнными кузовами со спартанским интерьером (кроме того же Range Rover и Jeep Wrangler) и мягким тентованным верхом, а также и низкооборотными бензиновыми или дизельными двигателями. Поэтому внедорожник с постоянным полным приводом, большим количеством новаторских (мирового уровня) решений вроде независимой передней подвески, закрытого комфортабельного цельнометаллического несущего кузова, в сочетании с невысокой (по мировым меркам) ценой вызвал большую сенсацию, и, впоследствии, множество подражаний. В 1978 ВАЗ-2121 был награждён золотой медалью и признан лучшим автомобилем своего класса на международной выставке в Брно[4]. В 1979 году «Ниве» был присвоен Государственный знак качества СССР[4]. В октябре 1980 автомобиль получил золотую медаль Познаньской международной ярмарки[4]. «Нива» (с 2006 года LADA 4x4) была и остается одним из лидеров экспорта АвтоВАЗа. Две самые первые специальные версии «Нивы» были экспортными: ВАЗ-21211 с 1,3-литровым мотором (для стран с дорогим топливом и высокими налогами на объём двигателя) и ВАЗ-21212 с правым рулем. Праворульная версия «Нивы» пользовалась очень хорошим спросом в Великобритании и даже поступала в небольшом количестве в Японию. В имеющей множество горных дорог Австрии в 80-е годы «Нива» занимала до 99 % парка внедорожников [5]. С конца 90-х на экспорт производится малыми партиями модификация ВАЗ-21215 с дизелем Пежо. Экспортный потенциал бензиновой «Нивы» сохранился в странах дальнего зарубежья по настоящее время. В 2003—2007 гг. завод успешно адаптировал LADA 4x4 под нормы Euro 3 и 4. Целый ряд зарубежных тюнинговых фирм создавал на базе «Нивы» версии с кузовами кабриолет и пикап, а также спортивно-гоночные и тюнинговые варианты. За три с лишним десятилетия из 1,8 миллионов произведённых «Нив» на экспорт в более чем 100 стран мира было отправлено свыше 500 тыс. Ежегодно около 15 тысяч «Нив» экспортировались в страны Латинской Америки, Африки, Среднего Востока, Восточной и Западной Европы, в том числе в Германию, Францию, Италию, Англию, Испанию, страны Бенилюкса и Грецию. В этих странах, а также в Японии, несмотря на то, что внедорожник больше не поставляется в Страну восходящего солнца, и по сей день существуют клубы любителей «Нивы». Встречаются «Нивы» и в Австралии и Канаде. Сегодня «Ниву» из поставляемых АвтоВАЗом сборочных комплектов собирают в Усть-Каменогорске, Казахстан (фирма «Азия-Авто») и на Украине (завод «ЛуАЗ» компании «Богдан»). Ранее сборка «Нивы» из SKD комплектов производилась в Греции и в Эквадоре, где только в 2001 году было собрано почти две с половиной тысячи автомобилей. testet einen modernen Exoten: Den Lada Taiga. Spezieller Gast in diesem Test: Rallye-Legende und „Mr. Lada“ Rudi Stohl!

Hier sehen Sie Bilder vom Lada Taiga und von Rudi Stohls 1985er-Safari-Auto!

Gleich geht’s los, aber zuvor noch einige Anmerkungen: Klarerweise kann man ein Fahrzeug, das seit drei Jahrzehnten produziert wird, nicht mit denselben Maßstäben beurteilen wie ein brandneues Modell. Lada hat an dem Modell und seinen Eigenschaften, und Eigenheiten, mit Konsequenz bis heute festgehalten; zum Teil wohl auch aus Notwendigkeit.

In manchem hat die Zeit den Lada Taiga überholt, und das nehmen wir von vornherein zur Kenntnis. Nehmen wir ihn trotzdem ernst und sehen wir uns an, was er dem verwöhnten Publikum des 21. Jahrhunderts noch zu bieten hat.

Tipp für Schnellentschlossene: Den Taiga gibt es seit 30 Jahren in Österreich, das wird bis Ende Juni mit einem Sonderpreis gefeiert. Der Taiga in Basisversion (denken Sie sich die Beklebung, den Rammschutz und die Seitenschweller weg) ist um 11.850,- Euro zu haben, das ist eine Ersparnis von 2.000 Euro gegenüber dem regulären Listenpreis.

Extras gibt es auch einige, vom Faltdach über Leichtmetallräder und Sitzheizung bis zu Wildwanne und Gewehrhalter, wir konnten dafür jedoch keine österreichischen Preise in Erfahrung bringen (der Importeur sitzt in Deutschland, das macht alles etwas schwieriger) – bei Interesse wenden Sie sich bitte an den Lada-Händler Ihres Vertrauens.

Über die schmale Liste der Aufpreisextras hinaus bieten einige Vertragswerkstätten Modifikationen an wie zum Beispiel die Verlängerung der Sitzschiene, was InteressentInnen über 1,85m Körpergröße ins Auge fassen sollten. Man kann sich also seinen Wunsch-Taiga schneidern lassen. Nicht in Österreich erhältlich ist übrigens der offenbar nur für deutsche Rinder zugelassene Rammschutz des Testwagens.

Zunächst zu den Eckdaten: Wir reden hier von einem Geländewagen mit permanentem Allradantrieb (vor 30 Jahren neben dem Range Rover der einzige auf dem Markt), angetrieben von einem 1,7-Liter-Benzinmotor mit 81 PS; andere Motorvarianten gibt es nicht. Geschaltet wir ein manuelles Fünfgang-Getriebe, es gibt eine Geländeuntersetzung und eine Mitteldifferentialsperre.

Dem Alter der Konstruktion gemäß etwas schütter ist die Sicherheitsausstattung: Vier Dreipunkt-Gurte und als Bonus ein Airbag für den Fahrer. ABS und ESP sind Zukunftsmusik – man hat sie aber auch nicht erwartet. Ähnlich „basic“ gibt sich die Komfortausstattung: Die Servolenkung ist das einzige Zugeständnis an Halbschuh-Offroader.

Das Ambiente im Innenraum ist sachlich-karg ohne Firlefanz, mit kuriosem Material-Mix: Einiges für die Ewigkeit gebaut, anderes eher ärmlich anmutend. In dieser Beziehung ist der Taiga auch innerhalb der Modellpalette seines Herstellers der Nachzügler. Die Heckbank bietet Passagieren wenig Platz; aber was will man – der Taiga ist kaum länger als ein Mini. Zusammenfalten lässt sich diese Bank auch, wenngleich mit Mühe und unter dem Risiko von Schnittverletzungen.

Und der Test geht weiter: Mehr zum Lada Taiga finden Sie in der rechten Navigation!

Lada Taiga


Er ist nicht umzubringen. Seit den 70er-Jahren pflügt der Lada Taiga nahezu unverändert durch die Wälder Europas. Nun wagt die Marke den Neuanfang.

Er ist die größte Konstante im Automobilbau. Seit Mitte der 70er ist er weitgehend unverändert. Die Technik blieb de facto am Stand von damals. ESP, ABS? Fehlanzeige. Entwickelt wurde er für die Weiten Russlands. Was nicht da ist, kann auch nicht kaputt werden. Komfort? Auf ein Minimum reduziert. Dafür ist er ein Tier im Gelände.

Die Werksbezeichnung lautet 21214, in Österreich ist er unter dem Namen Taiga bekannt, in Deutschland läuft er unter Niva. Die technischen Daten sind wenig berauschend. 83 PS leistet der Vierzylinder mit 1690 ccm. Von 0 bis 100 km/h vergehen 19 Sekunden, und mit einer Höchstgeschwindigkeit von 137 km/h braucht man keine Angst vor Anzeigen wegen Rasens auf der Autobahn zu haben.
Die Russen und das Saufen, auch der Lada erfüllt dieses Klischee. Der Verbrauch liegt bei 9,5 Liter (CO2: 233 g/km), da ist sogar ein Porsche 911 mit 350 PS umweltfreundlicher. Und um 15.950 Euro bekommt man in Österreich sogar ein recht anständiges Auto, da muss es doch wirklich keine Kiste sein, die als Neuwagen bereits extrem alt ist.
Trotzdem hat der Taiga auch hierzulande noch seine Fans. Immerhin 124 Lada wurden im Vorjahr in Österreich neu zugelassen. Immer noch mehr als der vor der Pleite stehende Hersteller Saab. Die Kunden sind vor allem in der Forstwirtschaft und Jägerschaft zu finden. Kein Wunder also, dass für den Taiga als Extra ein Gewehrhalter angeboten wird.
Der Taiga ist ein Sinnbild für die rückständige Autoindustrie in Russland. Dabei ist Russland mit einem Plus von etwa 60 Prozent der Wachstumsmarkt in Europa. In zwei Jahren soll er zum größten Automarkt des Kontinents aufgestiegen. Analysten gehen davon aus, dass bis 2020 die Zahl der jährlich verkauften Autos in Russland von derzeit nicht ganz 2,5 Millionen auf etwa 3,5 Millionen steigen wird. Einerseits ist die Autodichte nicht einmal halb so hoch wie in Österreich, andererseits beträgt das Durchschnittsalter der Autos in Russland satte 13 Jahre.
Noch ist Lada am Heimmarkt mit einem Anteil von etwa 23 Prozent die Nummer eins. Die ausländische Konkurrenz rückt aber deutlich näher. Das soll sich aber in den nächsten Jahren ändern. Für Lada soll eine neue Ära beginnen. Die russische Marke investiert Milliarden in neue Modelle. Von Volvo hat man Designer Steve Mattin geholt. Der Brite hat die Schweden mit dem XC 60 und dem S60 endgültig aus dem Schema Kastenwagen geholt. Lada und Design? Das war bisher ein Widerspruch. Aber auch um die Qualität und das Image will man sich kümmern. So werden neue Fertigungsstraßen errichtet. Unterstützung holt man sich von Renault. Die Franzosen halten immerhin 25 Prozent der Anteile der Lada-Mutter Avtovaz.
Die Chancen auf einen Neuanfang beim Taiga stehen also recht gut. Dass Ikonen nicht ewig leben können, hat man auch bei Land Rover erkannt. Der Defender bekommt im Jahr 2015 einen Nachfolger.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Opel Ascona

The Opel Ascona is a mid-sized car produced by Opel. It was produced in three separate generations from 1970 to 1988, beginning with rear-wheel drive and ending up as a front-wheel drive J-car derivative. In motorsport, the Ascona 400 rally car driven by Walter Röhrl won the World Rally Championship drivers' title in the 1982 season.

The Ascona took its name from the lakeside resort of that name in Ticino, Switzerland, and already in the 1950s a special edition of the Opel Rekord P1 was sold as an Opel Ascona in Switzerland, where the name was again used in 1968 for a locally adapted version of the Opel Kadett B into which the manufacturers had persuaded a 1.7-litre engine borrowed from the larger Rekord model of the time.

 The Opel Ascona A launched in 1970 and sold across Europe was, however, the first mainstream Opel model to carry the name. The Ascona was introduced in September 1970 and ended production in August 1988, to be replaced by the Opel Vectra A.

Ascona A

  In the fall of 1970, Opel presented its completely new vehicle range in Rüsselsheim (internal project code 1.450). The Opel Manta coupé was launched on September 9, followed by the Opel Ascona on October 28 in two and four-door sedan forms, plus a three-door station wagon, called the Caravan or Voyage. These models were positioned between the existing Opel Kadett and the Opel Rekord.

Ascona B

 The second generation Opel Ascona B was presented in the 1975 Frankfurt Motor Show. It was available as a two or four-door sedan. There were related two and three-door coupé models in the Opel Manta range. There was no estate body.
The Ascona B retained the same engine range as its predecessor, although the 1.9 L was increased to 2.0 L in 1978, and versions with higher compression ratio and needing 98 octane petrol, dubbed S, were available alongside the 90 octane models. The 2.0 E model had a Bosch L-Jetronic electronic fuel injection, and a 2.1 L diesel motor was added to the Ascona B range in 1978.

1970 Buick GS 455


Ascona 400 rally car

  Built in 1981, the 1980 world champion Walter Röhrl took the rally car to victory and won the World Rally Championship drivers' title in the 1982 season. The car was developed by Opel alongside the Manta B 400 model which consisted of the same changes. Irmscher and Cosworth were hired as partners for the project, Cosworth to deliver a 16 valve double cam crossflow head for the engine, and Irmscher for the exterior and interior styling. Cosworth delivered the heads to Opel and Opel soon discovered a major mistake. The plan was to use the 2.0 litre engine block but this did not produce enough power. Time was running out and Opel badly needed to do something. Opel took the 2.0E block and gave it an overbore, installed larger pistons, other pistonrods, and installed the crankshaft of their 2.3 litre diesel CIH style engine. Results was a 2.4 litre engine. The 2.4 litre engine gave way to some massive power outputs using the 16 valve head. The street versions of the 400 therefore came with 144 PS (106 kW) engines, using the Bosch fuel injection of the Manta GSi and GT/E series. However in race trim they were delivered putting out 230 PS (169 kW), which could be improved further to 340 PS (250 kW), while still using normally aspirated engine components.

Ascona C

The Ascona C was launched in August 1981 as part of General Motors' J-car project. This was Opel's second front-wheel drive car since the introduction of the Kadett D in 1979. This car was manufactured in Rüsselsheim, Germany, Antwerp, Belgium and Luton, England, and was sold in the UK under the name Vauxhall Cavalier and Chevrolet Monza in Latin America. The Cavalier Coupé was phased out, but the Opel Manta was retained in the UK (the last car to be badged as an Opel in the UK before the brand was phased out there in 1988). There were no longer sheet metal differences between Opel and Vauxhall models after 1982. The Ascona C won the "Golden Lenkrad" at the end of 1981 and was West Germany's biggest selling car.

Opel Ascona 1970 - 1988

Biedermann aus Rüsselsheim: 1975 bis 1988 hörte Opels Mittelklasse auf den Namen Ascona. Und der Limousine mit dem Namen des kleinen Schweizer Ortes haftet bis heute ein etwas dröger Buchhalter-Charme an. Dabei sind die ersten beiden Generationen, Ascona A und Ascona B, direkt mit Opels legendärem Coupé Manta verwandt. Der Knaller der zweiten Generation war der Ascona 400, eine 144 PS starke Straßenversion von Walter Röhrls Weltmeisterfahrzeug von 1982. Mehr Infos, Fotos und News finden Sie hier.

Опель Аскона

 Opel Ascona С, третье по счету поколение этой модели, появилось в 1981 году. По сегодняшним меркам, сложно назвать дизайн этого автомобиля современным, но экземпляры в хорошем состоянии смотрятся довольно прилично. Основной проблемой Опель Аскона является коррозия, она разъедает не только кузов, но и многие элементы технического оснащения. Салон довольно просторный, а эргономика водительского места вполне приемлема и учитывая возраст модели, особых нареканий не вызывает. Ascona достаточно легок в управлении, а подвеску можно назвать комфортабельной. У этого автомобиля сущетсвует довольно большое количество характерных "болячек", как возрастных, так и врожденных, но благодаря хорошей ремонтопригодности и дешевым запчастям, ремонт Опель Аскона нельзя назвать обременительным для семейного бюджета. При всех своих недостатках, этот автомобиль вполне можно рассматривать как альтернативу подержанным представителям отечественного автопрома, поскольку при низкой стоимости, он обеспечивает неплохой уровень надежности и комфорта.

Es gab mal eine Zeit, in der war vieles anders. Möbel hießen noch nicht Loftahammar, Västervik oder Björnsholm, sie mussten auch nicht in Kartons nach Hause geschleppt und zusammengebastelt werden. Die bundesdeutsche Sitzgruppe hieß Helga und war solide verzapft. Aus dem Radio tönten Stimmen von Leuten, die noch eine Sprecherausbildung genossen hatten und sich mitteilen konnten, statt in irgendeiner Morning-Show durchzudrehen. In dieser Zeit präsentierte die Adam Opel AG ihren Ascona – damals, am 28. Oktober 1970. Das neue Mittelklasseauto sortierte sich fein säuberlich zwischen dem Kadett B und dem Rekord C ein und war der Inbegriff der westdeutschen Mitte. Nicht zu groß, nicht zu klein, nicht protzig oder ärmlich. Der Ascona, laut Opel „das Auto der technischen Vernunft“, war geradlinig, berechenbar, zuverlässig. Eine Art Karl-Heinz Köpcke auf Rädern sozusagen. Für die Jüngeren: Köpcke war 28 Jahre lang Herr der TV-,,Tagesschau“ und die personifi zierte Glaubwürdigkeit. Die Erde wäre eine Scheibe gewesen, wenn Köpcke es gemeldet hätte.


Ich bin unterwegs ins schöne Tessin. Wer heute in den kleinen Kurort am Nordufer des Lago Maggiore fährt, nachdem der kantige Opel benannt wurde, hat es gut. Fast 17 Kilometer lang haben sich die Schweizer zwischen 1970 und 1980 durch das Gotthard-Massiv gesprengt und einen Tunnel hinterlassen, der den weiter oben laufenden, bis zu 2106 Meter hohen Gotthardpass überflüssig macht. Der hält zwar phantastische Aussichten bereit, ist aber im Winter meist unpassierbar.

Die Zahl der Ascona, die sich irgendwo auf Höhe der Schöllenenschlucht bis zur Hinterachse eingegraben haben, ist nicht überliefert. Es werden viele gewesen sein. Wie trällerte der stets braungebrannte Vico Torriani so schön? „Im Sommer scheint d’Sonne, im Winter da schneit‘s – in der Schweiz, in der Schweiz, in der Schweiz.“
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Plötzlich gleißend helles Licht. Der Tunnel spuckt mich aus und der Zielanlauf auf den Lago Maggiore beginnt. Es ist zehn Grad wärmer als auf der Nordseite des Gotthard. Ab hier wird italienisch gesprochen. Der Monte Verità – Hausberg der Asconeser – müsste bald in Sicht kommen. Wie werden die Eingeborenen reagieren, wenn ein besonders gut erhaltenes Exemplar des 690.000 mal gebauten Opel Ascona A auftaucht?
Den letzten Kreisverkehr kurz vorm Ortseingang geht man am besten italienisch an: mit Schmackes. Der 1.6 S hat 80 PS unter der waagerecht verlaufenden Haube und wiegt keine Tonne. Der Vierzylinder gibt alles. Jetzt auf Höhe „drei Uhr“ die Zahnstangenlenkung zum Rechtsabbiegen animieren und dem Fiat Grande Punto weiter hinten den Weg abschneiden. Schwupp, der Ascona ist in Ascona – einem typischen Einbahnstraßenörtchen am „Lagensee“ mit rauschenden Hanfpalmen, üppig blühenden Oleanderhainen und knappem Parkraum. Auf der Piazza Giuseppe Motta, nahe dem Schiffsanleger, lokalisiert ein Enddreißiger, den seine Begleiterin Ruedi ruft, den 1974er Ascona: „Jedes Mal wenn ich auf YouTube Ascona eingebe, kommt zuerst dieser Scheiß-Opel“, lässt Ruedi wissen. Hat man Töne? Unverschämter frecher Schnodder. Ab mit ihm in den kalten See!

Die Stimmung klart schlagartig auf, weil sich Ruedi als begeisterter Signum- Fahrer outet, der mir bereitwillig seinen Parkplatz räumt. Guter Mann, mir war doch gleich so. Der bei der Internet-Recherche so vorwitzige Ascona, der in drei Modellgenerationen vom Band lief und erst 1988 vom Vectra abgelöst wurde, ist quasi der Urahn von Ruedis Signum. Interessant: Der mit besonders langem Radstand gesegnete Signum war ursprünglich als Vectra Kombi geplant. Das Modell, das letztlich unter dieser Bezeichnung auf die Straße rollte, sollte eigentlich als Omega-Nachfolger dienen. Ein etwas zu hoch gehängtes Ziel. Der Omega in spe wurde noch in der Entwicklungsphase zum Vectra Caravan herabgestuft und der übriggebliebene „Vectra Caravan“ zum Signum ernannt.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Ford F-Series

The F-Series is a series of full-size pickup trucks from Ford Motor Company which has been sold continuously for over six decades. The most popular variant of the F-Series is the F-150. It was the best-selling vehicle in the United States for 24 years, currently the best-selling truck for 34 years, and the best selling vehicle in Canada, though this does not include combined sales of GM pickup trucks.[3] In the tenth generation of the F-series, the F-250 and F-350 changed body style in 1998 and joined the Super Duty series. During the post-World War II era, smaller Canadian rural communities had access to either a Ford dealer or a Lincoln-Mercury-Meteor dealer, but not both; a Mercury-badged version was sold at Lincoln-Mercury-Meteor dealers there from 1946-1968. Other than the grilles, trim, and badging, these trucks were identical to their Ford counterparts.

First generation (1948–1952)

Second generation (1953–1956)

The F-Series was redesigned for 1953 with a more integrated look. The pickups also acquired their now familiar names: The F-1 now became the F-100, the F-2 now became the F-250, and the F-3 now became the 1-ton F-350. Optional interior amenities were new, including a dome light, lighter, arm rests, sun visors and a radio. On March 13, 1953, the "Ford-O-Matic" automatic transmission became an option.

Third generation (1957–1960)

For the third generation, Ford started its tradition of distinguishing the two types of pickup boxes; the traditional separate-fender body was called FlareSide, while a new smooth-sided look was known as StyleSide. The cabover F-Series was discontinued, having been replaced by the tilt-cab C-Series.
In 1959, Ford began in-house production of four-wheel drive trucks.

Fourth generation (1961–1966)

Ford introduced a new style of truck, unibody trucks, integrating the cab and the box; this was produced until 1963.
In 1965, the F-Series began to offer a 4-door crew cab as an option. Additionally that year, the Ranger name made its first appearance on a Ford truck; previously a base model of the Edsel, it was now used to denote a high-level styling package for F-Series pickups. A new chassis also marked the first appearance of Twin I-Beam front suspension.

Fifth generation (1967–1972)

In 1967, along with a minor update, the F-Series changed the Ranger from an option package to a separate trim level. In response to federal regulations, Ford added a number of exterior lights in 1968 and made some changes to the interior controls.

Sixth generation (1973–1979)

The changes for the sixth generation were largely cosmetic.
Real changes that were made were the addition of front disk brakes, and an additional 3 inches in the cab.

Seventh generation (1980–1986)

The 1980 F-Series was redesigned with an all-new chassis and larger body; this was the first ground-up redesign since 1965. While similar to the previous generation, the exterior of the trucks was redone to improve its aerodynamics and fuel economy. Medium-duty F-Series (F-600 and above) were also redesigned; although they shared the cab of the smaller pickup trucks, the largest version of F-Series now wore a front hood with separate front fenders (like the L-Series).
In a move towards fuel effiency, the F-Series gained smaller Windsor V8 engines from the Panther platform. In 1983, Ford added diesel power to the F-Series through a partnership with International Harvester (later Navistar). The 6.9L V8 produced similar power output as the Ford 351 V8 with the fuel economy as the 300 I6.
A noticeable change was made to the F-Series in 1982 as the Ford "Blue Oval" was added to the center of the grille. It would mark the final year of the Ranger trim; the name had been shifted onto the all-new compact pickup developed as a replacement for the Courier. It also marked the final year for the F-100, which had largely been superseded by the F-150.

Eighth generation (1987-1991)

The 1987 design was more streamlined, and maintenance items were made simpler. Rear antilock brakes were now standard, the first truck to boast this. The five speed Mazda M5OD transmission was added to the lineup in 1988, while still retaining the heavier built Borg-Warner T18 four speed manual transmission.

Ninth generation (1992–1996/1997)

New aerodynamic-looking front end, a new dashboard, and the Flareside bed returned, which was offered in regular or extended cab. The "Nite" package introduced in 1991 continued, but was dropped at the end of the 1992 model year.
The 1994 models brought several changes, including a slightly updated dashboard and the addition of a driver's-side airbag on F150's only, Centre High Mount Stop Lamp third brake light, brake-shift interlock and CFC-free air conditioning. It also brought a replacement for the seventh-generation medium-duty models. New options in 1994 included remote keyless entry with alarm, a compact disc player fitted into the regular stereo system, and a power driver's seat; an electrochromic inside rear view mirror was also offered in 1994 and 1995 as part of a luxury light package. Following the lead of the Explorer, an Eddie Bauer trim line — featuring plusher trim and increased standard features — was added for the 1995 F150; F250's and F350's were not available in this trim level.
Ford trailed rival General Motors in combined truck sales for much of the ninth generation, though sales steadily rose each year. 500,000 F-Series trucks were sold in 1992, but this rose to nearly 800,000 by 1996, and the Ford had overtaken the combined Chevrolet and GMC pickup sales for the first time in a decade.
  • F-150: 1/2 ton (6,100 lb GVWR max)
  • F-250: 3/4 ton (8,300 lb GVWR max)
  • F-250 HD: 1992–1997 Heavy Duty 3/4 ton (8,800 GVWR max)
  • F-350: 1 ton (10,000 lb GVWR max)
  • F-Super Duty: 1 ton plus (15,000 lb GVWR max)
4.9 L I61992–93145 hp (108 kW)265 lb·ft (359 N·m)
4.9 L I61994–96150 hp (110 kW)260 lb·ft (350 N·m)
5.0 L V81992–93185 hp (138 kW)270 lb·ft (370 N·m)
5.0 L V81994–96205 hp (153 kW)275 lb·ft (373 N·m)195 hp (145 kW) for automatic
5.8 L V81992210 hp (160 kW)315 lb·ft (427 N·m)
5.8 L V81993200 hp (150 kW)310 lb·ft (420 N·m)
5.8 L V81993–95240 hp (180 kW)340 lb·ft (460 N·m)Lightning only
5.8 L V81994–96210 hp (160 kW)325 lb·ft (441 N·m)
7.5 L V81992–93230 hp (170 kW)390 lb·ft (530 N·m)
7.5 L V81994–97245 hp (183 kW)395 lb·ft (536 N·m)
7.3 L Diesel V81992–94185 hp (138 kW)360 lb·ft (490 N·m)IDI
7.3 L Diesel V81992.5–94190 hp (140 kW)390 lb·ft (530 N·m)IDI Turbo
7.3 L Diesel V81994–97235 hp (175 kW)425 lb·ft (576 N·m)Direct injection Turbo, Powerstroke
The 7.5L and diesel engines were not available on the F-150, and the 4.9L and 5.0L were not available on the F-350 or F-450.
The 4wd F150 continued the use of the Dana 44 Twin-Traction Beam axle from the 86-91 trucks. The 4wd F250 carried the Dana 50 Twin Traction Beam axle from the previous generation, and the 4wd F350 used the Dana 60 Straight Axle.

Tenth generation (1997–2004)

Ford took the aero styling further for 1997 with a rounded nose on the new F-series. Since it was the F-150's first major redesign since 1980, the redesigned truck went on a nationwide 87-stop tour to Ford plants and the external part suppliers in October, 1995 prior to its release.

 To build anticipation for the redesigned truck, the 1997 model was released in January 1996 with the first ad campaigns airing during Super Bowl XXX. Because of the radical styling, Ford predicted that traditional truck buyers would not receive the radical and car-like 1997 well, so it continued to produce and sell the previous 1996 model alongside the redesigned 1997 model for a few months.

Eleventh generation (2004–2008)

Twelfth generation (2009–present)

Ford revealed the next generation 2009 F-150 design at Detroit's North American International Auto Show in January, 2008. Production of the series began in October 2008 at Ford's Kansas City Assembly Plant.The truck features a larger and more flexible interior, an updated three-bar grille, and additional choices of cab styles and trim levels. The chassis includes lighter-weight, high-strength steel for better fuel economy and safety and improved payload and towing capacity. Three engines were initially offered with the 2009 redesign: a revised 5.4 L 3-valve Triton V8 that is E85 capable with an output rating of 320 hp (240 kW) and 395 lb·ft (536 N·m) of torque, a 292 hp (218 kW) 4.6 L 3-valve V8, and a 248 hp (185 kW) 4.6 L 2-valve V8. The 3-valve 5.4 and 4.6 liter V8s are mated to Ford's new 6R80E 6-speed automatic transmission while the 4R75E 4-speed automatic transmission used previously is carried over for the 2-valve 4.6 L V8. The 4.2 L OHV V6 engine, which was previously available, has been dropped due to the closure of the Essex engine plant where it was produced.

source: Wikipedia,