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Panoz Esperante--D&M Motorsports Video Test Drive Review 2012 Chris Moran

SEE OVER 100 IN-DEPTH AUTO REVIEWS @ www.SUPERCARNETWORK.com. A first drive for Chris in the Panoz Esperante. Presented by D&M Motorsports, hosted by Chris Moran. Our intentions were good. This would be the first magazine to pit two similarly priced, low-volume, Ford SVT Mustang Cobra-powered sports cars from a pair of young and eager companies in a breathtaking shootout. The fatal flaw was the timing. Qvale Modena is already shipping Mangustas to customers. The company diverted one for this test and certified that it was fairly representative of that which citizens of the land may purchase. On the other hand, Panoz Auto Development Company in Hoschton, Georgia, is still developing its Esperante. It did produce a prototype with Irish-green paint and oatmeal leather for testing, but the car was clearly yanked out of the oven while still a little squishy. Regular production of the aluminum body panels had yet to begin, the interior is still undergoing minor revisions, and raising the unperfected convertible top occupied two engineers with tools for 20 minutes. In short, the Esperante's test numbers have too many asterisks to be used in an honest comparison with the Mangusta. Not to say that the time spent with the Esperante was a complete waste. The Panoz shows promise of maturing into a shapely, competent roadster, and Danny Panoz promises the first buyers will be able to unload their extra $81,961 on one by this fall, once he obtains tops and bodies for the 100 or so completed chassis sitting in his factory. That's just a few thousand clams shy of the Mangusta's price, but philosophically, the Esperante is a completely different animal. Panoz splices in far more Mustang DNA, including the steering rack, the ABS-equipped brakes (not available on the Mangusta), the independent rear suspension (IRS) module, and parts of the floorpan and fire wall. After modifications, those bits bolt to a space frame of interlocking aluminum extrusions that form the main structural skeleton. Oddly enough, despite the high Mustang content, the Esperante feels less like a Mustang than the Qvale does. Panoz is aiming for a more classic sports-car experience and succeeds in part with a lower driving position, a compact three-spoke steering wheel that neatly conceals its airbag, and two pontoon fenders that bracket the view out the windshield. The crisply tuned Panoz also behaves lighter on its feet. It turns in with Ginsu sharpness and bites the pavement hard in corners. But the Esperante demands a smooth hand near the limit because the rear end is easy to fluster and difficult to collect after it breaks loose. Blame may lie with the Cobra's IRS module. Ford engineers designed it first and foremost to bolt directly to the Mustang's live-axle pickup points, sacrificing weight and performance for packaging convenience. Panoz adds only a cantilevered coil-on-shock assembly to make it work in the Esperante's space frame. Perhaps more tweaking will get the Panoz and Ford ends working in better harmony. Throttle response is lustier in the Panoz, and it trounces the Mustang Cobra and the Mangusta in acceleration and braking. An oppressively boomy, low-restriction Exhaust may have helped contribute to the scorching drag-strip times. Danny says they are still tinkering with different systems. Since it last appeared on these pages (January 1999), the Esperante has experienced some noteworthy revisions. "Nobody liked the pursed lips," admits Danny, so Panoz widened the tiny oval mouth that gave the first Esperante a face out of The X-Files. Inside, the company inched the shift knob closer to the driver by installing a remote shift linkage. It also repositioned the center-mounted gauges so that their binnacle is flat to the panel a la BMW Z8. Fine, except that they are even harder to read quickly and the reflection of the sky washes out the dials. The Panoz may need to bake some more, but with Qvale out booking sales, the temperature should be hotter than ever.


 


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1930 Ford Model A T-Bucket Hot Rod-D&M Motorsports Video Walk Around and Review with Chris Moran
An outrageous 1930 Ford Model A Custom Street Rod, offered by D&M Motorsports. Hosted by Chris Moran. The Ford Model A of 1927--1931 (also colloquially called the A-Model Ford or the A, and A-bone among rodders and customizers[1]) was the second huge success for the Ford Motor Company, after its predecessor, the Model T. First produced on October 20, 1927, but not sold until December 2, it replaced the venerable Model T, which had been produced for 18 years. This new Model A (a previous model had used the name in 1903--1904) was designated as a 1927 model and was available in four standard colors, but not black. By 4 February 1929, one million Model As had been sold, and by 24 July, two million.[2] The range of body styles ran from the Tudor at US$500 (in grey, green, or black)[2] to the Town Car with a dual cowl at US$1200.[3] In March 1930, A sales hit three million, and there were nine body styles available.[2] The Model A was produced through 1931. When production ended in March, 1932, there were 4,849,340[citation needed] Model As made in all styles. Its successor was the Model B, which featured an updated 4-cylinder engine, followed by the Model 18 which introduced Ford's new Flathead V8 engine. Prices for the Model A ranged from US$385 for a roadster to $1400 for the top-of-the-line Town Car. The engine was a water-cooled L-head 4-cylinder with a displacement of 201 cu in (3.3 l). This engine provided 40 horsepower (30 kW). Typical fuel consumption was between 25 and 30 mpg (U.S.) (8 to 12 kilometres per litre or 8-9 L/100 km)[citation needed] using a Zenith one-barrel up-draft[citation needed] carburetor,with a top speed of around 65 mph (104 km/h). It had a 103.5 in (2,630 mm) wheelbase with a final drive ratio of 3.77:1. The transmission was a 3-speed sliding gear manual unit with a 1-speed reverse. The Model A had 4-wheel mechanical drum brakes. The 1930 and 1931 editions came with stainless steel radiator cowling and headlamp housings. The Model A came in a wide variety of styles: Coupe (Standard and Deluxe), Business Coupe, Sport Coupe, Roadster Coupe (Standard and Deluxe), Convertible Cabriolet, Convertible Sedan, Phaeton (Standard and Deluxe), Tudor Sedan(Standard and Deluxe), Town Car, Fordor (2-window) (Standard and Deluxe), Fordor (3-window) (Standard and Deluxe), Victoria, Station Wagon, Taxicab, Truck, and Commercial. The Model A was the first Ford to use the standard set of driver controls with conventional clutch and brake pedals; throttle and gearshift. Previous Ford models used controls that had become uncommon to drivers of other makes. The Model A's fuel tank was located in the cowl, between the engine compartment's fire wall and the dash panel. It had a visual fuel gauge, and the fuel flowed to the carburetor by gravity. In cooler climates, owners could purchase an aftermarket cast iron unit to place over the Exhaust manifold to provide heat to the cab. A small door provided adjustment of the amount of hot air entering the cab. Model A was the first car to have safety glass in the windshield. The Soviet company GAZ, which started as a cooperation between Ford and the Soviet Union, made a licensed version of the Model A from 1932-1936.[4] This itself was the basis for the FAI and BA-20 armored car, which saw use as scout vehicles in the early stages of World War II. In addition to the United States, Ford made the Model A in plants in Argentina, Canada, France, Germany and the United Kingdom. In Europe, where cars were taxed according to engine size, Ford equipped the Ford Model A with a 2,033 cc motor providing a claimed output of just 40 hp.[5] However, the engine size was still large enough to equate to a fiscal horsepower rating of 24 hp and attracted a punitive annual car tax levy of £24 in the UK and similar penalties in other principal European markets,[6] leaving the car unable to compete in the newly developing mass market. It therefore was expensive to own and too heavy and thirsty to achieve volume sales, but also too crude to compete as a luxury product. European manufactured Model As failed to achieve the sales success in Europe that would greet their smaller successor on the assembly lines in England and Germany.[5] Historical context of Model A development





Panoz LMP1 - Panoz LLC - Sports Cars - Racing - Luxury - Don Panoz
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Ferrari 430 Scuderia--D&M Motorsports Video Test Drive 2012 Chris Moran
SEE OVER 100 IN-DEPTH AUTO REVIEWS @ www.SUPERCARNETWORK.com. An in-depth test drive of a 2009 Ferrari 430 Scuderia with Chris Moran. Presented by D&M Motorsports. That's right. The 430 Scuderia, a V-8-powered, aluminum "volume-sales" model we all kind of assumed was just another lightened, mid-cycle riff on the F430 turns out to be one serious supercar. It may be Ferrari's best-performing GT car ever, despite its fire-sale $272,306 price. It is unquestionably the Ferrari that mere owners -- not factory test drivers or F1 world champions -- will be able to drive the fastest on demanding roads or race circuits without winding up on wreckedexotics.com. Granted, the 503-hp 430 carries 18-percent-more weight per filly than does the 651-hp Enzo and it lacks the Enzo's exotic pushrod-actuated suspension, active aero-gear, and a few other racy touches. And yet with Michael Schumacher at the helm, the 430 Scuderia circulated the fast track at Fiorano in 1:25.0, equaling Dario Benuzzi's best run in the Enzo, circa 2003. And indeed our own test equipment recorded a quicker launch in the 430 (1.2 seconds to 30 mph versus 1.4 in our last Enzo) and a blistering 0-to-60 time of just 3.1 seconds to the Enzo's comparatively pedestrian 3.4. Granted, by the quarter mile the Enzo's power advantage vaults it ahead by 0.2 second and almost 7 mph, but on shorter circuits like the 1.8-mile Pista di Fiorano there's precious little time spent at those speeds. In fact, as development engineer Michele Giaramita explained the many advantages the 430 enjoys at different spots on the track, we had to wonder if Michael might have been sandbagging just a skosh in the name of saving Enzo's face until the next limited-run V-12 super-cavallino arrives. Follow along and see if you agree. Click to view Gallery Ferrari took a holistic approach to enhancing the F430, whittling away at anything that slows a car down and applying the latest tricks learned in Formula 1 racing. Power, weight, tires, and suspension were the low-hanging fruit. Using carbon fiber extensively throughout the interior and engine compartment, ditching sound-deadening materials and fitting a Lexan rear window and titanium springs and lug bolts helped shave 220 lb off the F430. A host of detail refinements to the 4.3L flat-plane-crankshaft V-8 added 20 hp and 4 lb-ft of peak output, but fattens the torque on either side of the peak by a bunch more, making the overall performance feel like much more than a four-percent improvement. Stickier Pirelli PZero Corsa tires (10 mm wider in front), plus lowered (0.6 in.), stiffer springs (35 percent front/32 percent rear) Boost handling, braking, and acceleration-launch performance. The rest of the improvements are pretty much all Formula 1-inspired, starting with the aerodynamics, which are optimized to increase front and rear downforce without resorting to large wings by creating suction underneath the body. A patent-pending "base bleed" method of relieving aerodynamic pressure from the rear-wheel housings helps bring the 430 Scuderia's drag coefficient in five percent under the Enzo's. Next, the ever-evolving F1 paddle-shift automated manual gearbox controls have been hyper-caffeinated to deliver shifts in an unfathomable 60 milliseconds. This new F1-SuperFast2's shifts happen in about a quarter of the time required for a manual shift-or for a shift in the first-generation F1 box in the Enzo, for that matter. But perhaps the most significant technology transfer from F1 to the 430 Scuderia is the F1-Trac traction/stability control system, which for the first time on a road car also has authority over the electronically controlled E-Diff2 wet-clutch limited-slip differential. Put simply, this system is designed so that in the Manettino's "Race" mode, any driver should be able to approach the apex of any turn and simply flat-foot the throttle and steer through letting the electronics modulate brake pressures, engine torque, and differential lockup. The electronic





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British Motor Corporation Story
BMC was the largest British car company of its day, with (in 1952) 39 percent of British output, producing a wide range of cars under brand names including Austin, Morris, MG, Austin-Healey and Wolseley as well as commercial vehicles and agricultural tractors. The first chairman was Lord Nuffield (William Morris) but he was replaced in August 1952 by Austin's Leonard Lord who continued in that role until his 65th birthday in 1961 but handing over, in theory at least, the managing director responsibilities to his deputy George Harriman in 1956. BMC's headquarters were at the Austin plant at Longbridge, near Birmingham and Austin was the dominant partner in the group mainly because of the chairman. The use of Morris engine designs was dropped within 3 years and all new car designs were coded ADO from "Amalgamated Drawing Office". The Longbridge plant was up to date, having been thoroughly modernised in 1951, and compared very favourably with Nuffield's 16 different and often old fashioned factories scattered over the English Midlands. Austin's management systems however, especially cost control and marketing, were not as good as Nuffield's and as the market changed from a shortage of cars to competition this was to tell. The biggest-selling car, the Mini, was famously analysed by Ford Motor Company who concluded that BMC must be losing £30 on every one sold. The result was that although volumes held up well throughout the BMC era, market share fell as did profitability and hence investment in new models, triggering the 1966 merger with Jaguar Cars to form British Motor Holdings (BMH), and three years later leading to the government sponsored merger of BMH with Leyland Motor Corporation. Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_Motor_Corporation





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Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG--D&M Motorsports Test Drive Review 2012 Chris Moran
An in-depth review of Mercedes' newest world-class supercar, the 2011 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG. Hosted by Chris Moran. SEE OVER 100 IN-DEPTH AUTO REVIEWS @ www.SUPERCARNETWORK.com. It's five and a half feet long. It weighs 8.8 pounds. Height of an adult female, weight of a gallon or so of gas—these are the critical dimensions of the carbon-fiber driveshaft running between the engine and the rear-mounted transaxle in the new Mercedes SLS AMG. We note this here because, despite the car's retro-gullwing looks, the SLS is utterly bleeding edge—both in terms of its technical attributes and what it represents for Mercedes' in-house tuner. It is not simply a Mercedes with bigger wheels and a breathed-upon V-8 or V-12. It is, down to its churning carbon-fiber core, AMG's first dedicated automobile and the very antithesis of the overly complex and overweight half-million-dollar Mercedes SLR McLaren. "The SLS is a serious super sports car," says AMG chief of development Tobias Moers before taking a shot at the SLR, a carbon-fiber-bodied car that still managed to weigh in at 3858 pounds. "Our SLS weighs only 3572 pounds," he says, nearly 300 pounds lighter than the McMerc. Keeping the 182.6-inch-long, two-seat SLS's mass in check is its entirely aluminum construction (save for that driveshaft and steel A-pillars), a first for Mercedes-Benz. The aluminum structure weighs just 531 pounds, Mercedes says. The most distinctive aspect of the SLS's appearance is, of course, its roof-hinged gullwing doors, an homage to the iconic 300SL Gullwing. But AMG personnel took pains to point out that the doors are the only thing the SLS has in common with the 300SL. "We do not build a retro car at all!" AMG boss Volker Mornhinweg explains sharply. "In fact, we think it is the most advanced super sports car you can buy today." Those gullwing doors look spectacular. Unlike with the original SL, where one had to slide over a wide sill because of the space-frame structure underneath, it's easy to access the SLS's cabin. There's only one issue: Riders need long arms to reach the distant handles at the bottom of each door to pull them closed. The interior is simple and uncluttered, much like a current SL roadster's. While the car's structure is a pure AMG design, most of the parts, except for the shifter, are from the Mercedes bin. The instrument cluster is clear and easy to read, and we love the round HVAC vents. The center console has an aluminum finish, with carbon fiber an option. Press the starter button on the center console, and the now-familiar, AMG-designed 6.2-liter V-8 awakens with an angry yelp. The idle is deep, and the revs rise and fall race-car swiftly. Code-named M159, the engine is basically a reengineered version of the M156 unit that's fitted to AMG's "63" models. The M159 comes with an all-new magnesium intake, forged pistons in place of cast ones, and optimized tubular Exhaust headers. The engineers also switched from a wet sump to a dry arrangement, allowing the engine to be mounted lower to benefit the SLS's center of gravity. The maximum output of 563 horsepower is delivered at 6800 rpm, and peak torque of 479 pound-feet comes at 4750 rpm. In order to satisfy emissions standards—EU5, LEVII, ULEV—the Bosch ME 9.7 AMG engine management is set up to recharge the battery during deceleration. It's another way of trying to eke out decent fuel economy, which, based on Mercedes' European estimates, should equate to roughly 13 mpg city and 20 highway. -Car and Driver, November 2009





Panoz AIV Roadster Loud sound
Please comment, rate, and subscribe! My Facebook Page - http://tinyurl.com/6385qw2 Blog - http://dtrockstar1.blogspot.com/ Chris Ashworth records a very rare Panoz AIV Roadster revving and driving away. AIV stands for Aluminum Intensive Vechicle. This car has the engine of a Mustang SVT Cobra.





Range Rover Sport HSE--D&M Motorsports Video Test Drive and Walk Around with Chris Moran
An in-depth look at a 2006 Land Rover Range Rover Sport HSE with Chris Moran. Presented by D&M Motorsports. www.dmautosales.com The Land Rover Range Rover Sport is a premium SUV that represents a shift in focus for this SUV-oriented luxury brand. While traditional Land Rover models have combined unbeatable off-road performance with the amenities of a luxury sedan, the Range Rover Sport represents Land Rover's first entry into the burgeoning high-performance SUV arena. It is designed to offer sporty road manners and traditional Land Rover luxury without completely sacrificing the go-anywhere abilities of other Land Rover models. Despite its name, the Range Rover Sport is actually a modified and shortened version of the old Land Rover LR3. As such, the Sport is the smallest and most nimble SUV in the company's lineup. Overall, it is an enjoyable and luxurious vehicle to drive as well as look at. Shoppers seriously interested in getting maximum on-road performance out of an SUV would probably be better served by a few of this Land Rover's competitors, however, as they are able to deliver better acceleration and handling. Handling performance is a definite step up from other Land Rover models. The Range Rover Sport is the first Land Rover to offer the company's Dynamic Response suspension system, which is standard on the Supercharged model and optional on the HSE. Land Rover says that this computer-controlled system senses cornering forces and automatically adjusts the antiroll bars to optimize body control and handling. Dynamic Response works as advertised, giving the Range Rover Sport a more agile feeling when the roads get twisty, as compared to previous Land Rovers. Off-road performance is still within the Range Rover Sport's repertoire as well. A permanent four-wheel-drive system with a two-speed transfer case is standard, and features an electronically controlled, infinitely variable locking center differential that automatically distributes the available torque to both drive axles as needed. Additionally, the Range Rover Sport's Terrain Response System assures that the driver will be up to nearly any off-road task. It offers five different settings that adjust throttle response, gearchanges, vehicle ride height and the differentials to optimize mobility in varying environments, ranging from pavement to sand. Land Rover is also synonymous with luxury, which doesn't take a backseat in the Range Rover Sport. Just about any premium feature that you will find on most luxury sedans, or any of its luxury SUV competitors, is available on the Range Rover Sport. The same holds true for safety items, with the usual complement of airbags and electronic crash-prevention aids. Unlike the Sport's older cabin design, the current RR Sport offers the sort of ambience its big Range Rover brother has been renowned for. Occupants are surrounded by supple leathers, rich wood trim and top-notch materials, while the dash design is not only visually appealing but easy to use as well. As always, though, the Sport isn't as passenger-friendly as its Land Rover siblings. Headroom can be at a premium, and the backseat is best suited for two people. We are impressed with the Range Rover Sport's dual-natured capabilities on and off-road. Its 5.0-liter V8s provide the sort of power this hefty truck requires, and the cabin yields the luxury its well-heeled customers deserve. However, besides the above concerns, there's also the matter of its thirsty fuel consumption and Land Rover's poor record for reliability. Used Land Rover Range Rover Sport Models The Range Rover Sport debuted for the 2006 model year and is still in its first generation. However, there are notable differences between the current model and those made from 2006-'09. Originally, the HSE was equipped with a 4.4-liter V8 that developed 300 horsepower and 315 pound-feet of torque. The Supercharged model was equipped with a 4.2-liter V8 that, logically, employed a Supercharger to produce 390 hp and 410 lb-ft of torque. However, the relatively high curb weights put a damper on performance and fuel economy for both models. Both engines were backed by a six-speed automatic transmission with different tuning than the current model.





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