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Entries in Ferrari (72)

Tuesday
Mar172015

Paddle Shifter Revisited

We still wonder why many street vehicles have a paddle shifter. From one perspective it makes sense, some have gear selector buttons on the consolde or the dash, and no actual means to select a gear.

The paddle shifter becomes the gear selector.

It probably goes like this: "Here is the D button and these dainty plastic paddles behind the steering wheel will enable you to shift gears if you so desire".

Perhaps there is a longing for the H pattern shifter accompanied by a clutch pedal which is truly on its way to extinction.

Lets take a look at a few points:

In the early days of drag racing, when a torque converter was "slow" and a manual was slow to shift. Racers would resort to modifying the synchronizers in the manual transmission (crash box) to improve the power shifts that often led to clutch explosions.

The purest of manual transmission had spur cut gears and no synchronizers. Talk about driver engagement, double clutching, rev matching to upshift / downshift. Does it sound like what a paddle shifter car does it all by itself (aided by technology).

Those were also the days of race driver having callouses on the hand he was shifter gears with. Especially around the classic Nurburgring.

More recently Corvette Racing was losing a competitive advantage by having a shift lever to change gears on the XTrac transmission. A few milliseconds here and there at the end of a lap, and race it makes a difference.

In addition to making a driver's life easier: "Let's forget the clutch pedal except to start and put more wear and tear on the transmission". In a competition environment a paddle shifter is a requirement. For street use not so much.

Why do all these street vehicles have paddle shifters?

Watch and listen...Michael Schumacher (we wish the best) use a paddle shifter.

 

Friday
Mar062015

Vroom Room

Good Morning!

Its Friday, its the Vroom Room, come in make yourself comfortable, enjoy the cappuccino and biscotti, join the conversation.

After enduring the coldest February on record, we will hopefully get a warmer March  with spring like climate. Warmth as we all know is conducive the car sales at this time of year.

The Geneva Auto show opens this week, as you can imagine there was extensive coverage of the various press events on the interwebs. Yes...the Ferrari 488 GTB caught our attention, yes the AMG GT3 has a captivating Mercedes nostalgia look.

Our perspective on Canadian sales as of February, just scroll down.

Yes...we started doing reviews for this year, its hopefully a little warmer with less snow. As you can appreciate doing reviews in winter is challenging, especially the photo shoots. Stay tuned...

We found it interesting to read comments from some established auto journalists that for some reason still think that "someone owes them something" and are slowly realising that its a new reality. Its been a new reality for a few years.

A few weeks ago we mentioned that oil companies were absolutely not comfortable with the price of gas below a dollar a liter. You have surely noticed that gas is up to over a dollar since the past few weeks. While the price of a barrel of oil is almost a constant for the past month.

Our usual old race cars from the Goodwood Member Meeting, a superb photo gallery.

 

 

Friday
Nov212014

Vroom Room

Good Morning,

Ferrari CaliforniaIts Friday, its the Vroom Room,make yourself comfortable, enjoy the cappuccino and biscotti, join the conversation.

Have you noticed that Chevrolet with the Camaro Z28 and Ford with the Mustang GT350 are reviving old pony car memories from 2 generations back. Yes...Chrysler stuffed the equivalent of an "old school Hemi" in their Challenger. Lets ask the question "What would you rather have a German turbo something with paddles, or a Detroit V8 something with a clutch pedal?"

What do you think "Boomers" with "Millenial" offsprings relate to most? Especially if the Boomers went to Trans Am races way back in the day.

A Ford V8 with a "flat crank" is encroaching on Ferrari territory.

What is a "flat cranK" or a "single plane crankshaft"...on a traditional V8 the crank throws are at 90 degrees which generates the tradional V8 sound. A flat crank the throws are at 180 degrees (flat) which generates the traditional Ferrari V8 sound. 

The Los Angeles Auto Show opens this week, while the traditional North American show circuit starts for another year, accompanied by some inspired product, and the usual corporate hyperbole.

The other day we were reading that a publication is offering a "backstage" walk around during press days at the Detroit Auto Show for $495 per person. First thought "Are we reading this correctly?" Second thought "A brilliant way to value the knowledge base of the publication". Third thought "Perhaps we should charge a fee for our knowledge base".

There continues to be talk by industry professionals on the lenght of auto loans, and who is offering these loans. It makes for interesting conversations. As we have been saying "free flowing money" is one element empowering auto sales in Canada.

Our usual old race cars from the Classic 24 Hour Daytona 2014...enjoy the photography.

 

 

Friday
Oct312014

Vroom Room

Good Morning,

Painting by Jay KokaIts Friday, the last day of the month, its the Vroom Room, enjoy the cappuccino and biscotti, join the conversation, leave a comment.

In case you missed it (just scroll down) this week we published or thoughts on Canadian sales...the sales are off the chart...while our thoughts on Canadian sales are increasingly gaining momentum.

We're entertained by the coverage provided to extended loan terms. Again...its interesting to see how the mass media focuses on one aspect while missing the entire landscape.

Four years ago...times goes by, we published i-Dealer, its revealing that dealers are finally catching up to a digital dealership as an intrinsic part of their business that must be nurtured, developed, and protected. Pardon the sarcasm, the Internet has been around for 20 years.

You have to wonder what would happen if everyone "accelerated time" by only a few increments. Then you wonder why its not happening...time is the ultimate equaliser for everyone.

Approaching that time of year again, our thoughts on winter tires. Not which brand is the best, simply that you need winter tires, and you are the traction manager.

You could see this coming that FCA would spin off Ferrari to raise capital.

Can we say that 2014 is the year of the recalls? Can we also say that consumers are increasingly jaded with all the recalls? Cost savings? What do you think?

The Toronto Fall Classic Car Auction is this week end at the International Center.

Our usual old race cars from Thompson Motorsports Festival.

 

 

Saturday
Oct252014

Ferrari 512 M

Cool car...informative video...enjoy!