3 Trucks That Would Survive the Polar Vortex


The statistics are escalating, suggesting that over 187 million people are currently being smothered in a blanket of polar air. A portion of these people are trapped at the airport, considering that over 7000 flights have been canceled over the past two days. However, the majority of people are just sitting at home next to their computer, wishing they had an apocalyptic truck to take them away.

Well, if you’ve got the cash (or credit), we’ve got the solution:

Polar Toyota Tacoma

Why? Lightweight frame, snow shoes, and a supercharged DOHC 4.0-liter.

Toyota Hilux by Arctic Trucks

Why? Heavy duty battery, fuel/coolant heaters, and studded (run-flat) tires.

Subaru WRX Trax STI

Why? MOTEC tuned 2.5-liter turbo on a Mattrax rubber trax system.

RC Car Tribute to Ken Block’s Gymkhana Six


HPI Racing has created a Micro-Gymkhana in the form of an RC car, otherwise known as a Ken Block 2013 GRC Micro RS4. At first we thought this was just another typical mini-me 1/18 replica of Ken Block’s monster 650 horsepower Fiesta.

However, upon further inspection we realized this RC car actually features 4WD, coil over shocks, a double wishbone suspension, and high performance tires.

Big deal, you say. RC cars are for kids.

Tell that to the production team who built this miniature Gymkhana Six obstacle course, complete with jumps, a spiked ball, lifted tractors, and an attitude that some psychologists might classify as “Julius Caeser (Little Man) Syndrome”.

Get your Micro-Gymkhana here.

Cray Wheels For Your Corvette


You wouldn’t replace a Holley 850 double pump on a 1968 L88 Corvette with a Rochester 2-barrel, nor should you put just any set of rims on your precious C6. There is a reason GM spends upwards of several years in the design phase before releasing one generation Corvette. This is the same reason why Cray Wheels will not design and manufacture a wheel for anything other than a C4, C5, or C6 Corvette.

You may be envisioning a stuffy warehouse, where only a handful of wheels are churned through a robot per week at $10,000 a piece. However, these high-tolerance rims range from $300 to $650, and are all hand-assembled and available through most high-end wheel shops. Cray believes you should never bite off more than you can chew, and your cruise night competition should be doing most of their chewing with their mouths wide open.

Introducing the Bentley EXP 9F SUV

Bentley just cannot make up their mind on whether or not they want to put the EXP 9F SUV into production. They are reaching out to interested parties once again with a video, as if asking, “If we build it… will you come buy it?”

“Well, now that depends,” you say. “What’s it got to offer.”

The design of the exterior is uniquely inspired by the famous Blower Bentley’s, which if you’re under the age of 70, may not exactly ring a bell. These were the old 4 and ½ liter vehicles fitted with a roots supercharger. However, rather than the supercharger being built with the original plans, the chief engineer at the time refused. The supercharger ended up having to be retrofitted on the end of the crankshaft, in front of the radiator, which gave these cars a very recognizable appearance.

In 2012, this concept is still set off from the pack, featuring a “matrix” grill, and round headlamps. The original Blowers were quite competitive on the racetrack back in the day, and Bentley has worked to uphold that tradition with a twin-turbocharged 6-liter W-12, featuring a stout 600 horsepower, and axle bending 800 ft-lbs of torque. All this power is harnessed through an 8-speed transmission.

Not everybody needs 600 horsepower, so Bentley will also be offering a 4.0-liter V8, featuring 500 horsepower. A V-6 plug-in hybrid will round out the choices, offering 0-60 times in less than five seconds, and a range of 18 miles on just the battery, which isn’t too shabby for a hybrid.

Inside the retro theme continues with an upright dashboard with a wood veneer housing for the instrument cluster. Bentley tradition extends itself to several “bullseye” air vents, highlighted with a “rifled” gunmetal inner surface. The entire interior is designed from a balanced mix of soft-touch leather, silk wool, aluminum, and bronze.

The rear passengers will be treated to a plethora of modern accessories, including a full keyboard with Internet capability, and a high-quality “infotainment” screen. Powered footrests, cooling champagne compartment, and drink tables round out some of the traditional conveniences that can only come standard with a Bentley.

So, what do you think? Should they build it or not?

Land Rover Defender Xtech Edition

Jeremy Clarkson’s of Top Gear has finally had his ship come in (well, I guess it’s more like a tank). It’s a Land Rover Defender that looks as if it could survive a Tsunami. It’s called the Xtech edition, and don’t let the “tech” nomenclature fool you. This Rover has been striped out of its NAV and climate control, in exchange for 16-inch gloss black alloy rims, MTR off-road tires, LED lights, and a 2.2 liter diesel engine with a generous 265 ft-lbs of torque.

The Xtech is distinct from the regular Defender edition with the optional Nara Bronze exterior, and contrasting Santorini Black roof, wheel arches, and headlamp surrounds (Orkney Grey is also an option). The special edition has been fitted with body color coordinated grille, and gloss black lettering on the hood (“Land Rover”).

The interior is lost in pure darkness, but brought back into view with “Lunar” colored stitching, highlighting the black leather seats, including a Land Rover logo embossed on the front headrests. The center panel has been given the same finish as the exterior, allowing the Defender to maintain a simple, yet elegant appearance.

While the Xtech may be missing a few modern conveniences, it will still be loaded with the standard heated seats, defrost, air conditioning, anti-lock brakes, and electronic traction control. Land Rover also promises that you can customize further using their full range of optional accessories in their catalog. The only other options you will have to negotiate are if you prefer the 90 Hard Top or 110 Utility Wagon format.

There is one more very important bit of information. The Xtech edition will not be sold in the United States, so all those interested will need to have it shipped special, which will put a few more Benjamin Franklin’s on its already lumbering $43,500 price tag.

The Fisker Atlantic Shows Us Some Cleavage

The New York International Auto Show opens today for the general public, and visitors are going to be treated to the first viewing of the new plug-in, hybrid powered Fisker Atlantic. The Atlantic is the second offering, following their high-performance hybrid, known as the Karma. This is a slightly dumbed-down version, which also means that it will be more affordable to the average Joe and Jolene. The Karma was a six-figure, luxury, performance car for the green elite.

The range of the Atlantic on full lithium ion electric power will be between 30 and 40 miles, and thereafter, the gasoline (possibly turbo-charged) engine, supplied by BMW, will kick in. At this point, Fisker has yet to give the details of the engine itself, or the kind of performance that we can expect from it. However, it sure does look awfully purty under all those glittering lights!

Photo Credit: Sarah Tew / CBS Interactive

Which 2012 Vehicles Are Harmful to Your Health?

HealthyStuff.org has released the most caustic vehicles for 2012, and there were a couple of surprises on the list. You might think that price, and prestige would determine the amount of poor materials found in the design and construction of a vehicle. However, if you are a fan of Mini, VW, and Mitsubishi, we’ve got a few wild cards to throw at you. Continue reading Which 2012 Vehicles Are Harmful to Your Health?