Filed under: Convertible, Coupe, Sedan, Performance, Truck, Etc., Crossover, Hatchback, Audi, BMW, Chevrolet, Ford, Honda, Mazda, Porsche, Subaru, Toyota, Volkswagen, Electric, Luxury, Ram Employing complex scientific formulas and methodologies probably best described as "Whatever we felt like choosing," Automobile has named its All-Stars for the 2013 model year. The 11 vehicles earned their trophies for being "the best and most significant" offerings to the mag's staff and contributors, and while we were surprised to see a couple of them on the list, none of them were shocking. In no particular order, they are: Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 (seen above) Porsche Boxster Subaru BRZ/Scion FR-S Audi A7 Ram 1500 Honda Accord Mazda CX-5 Ford Focus BMW 3 Series Volkswagen GTI Random notes: The least expensive vehicle on the list was the Ford Focus at $16,995 however, it was the $24,495 Focus ST that was actually driven; the least expensive vehicle as-tested, when such indication was given, was the $28,265 BRZ; the most expensive vehicle as-tested was the $75,615 Porsche Boxster S, hurdling the price of the A7 by nearly $4,000; the greatest disparity between base and as-tested price was the Ram, from the $24,395 skin-and-bones truck to the $54,335 Laramie Longhorn Crew Cab; the GTI was viewed through the history of its birthplace, Wolfsburg. There you have it. Head on over to Automobile for the full story and the adventures they created to test each winner.Automobile Magazine names its 2013 All-Stars originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 22 May 2013 11:33:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | Email this | Comments
FRANKFURT (Reuters) - How many Mercedes staff does it take to sell a car? The answer, in the luxury carmaker's German showrooms, is more than it takes to shift an Audi - just part of the cost gap Daimler wants to close with its premium rivals.
Filed under: BMW, Toyota, Earnings/Financials An annual market study of the strongest brands across various industries has seen Toyota leapfrog BMW as the world's most valuable automotive brand. Toyota's 2013 brand value rose to $24.5 billion, up 12 percent versus 2012 numbers according to market research company Millward Brown's BrandZ Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands list. BMW's value fell slightly; down by 2 percent to a total of $24 billion. Mercedes-Benz finished in third place in the automotive category, up 11 percent from 2012 for a valuation of $18 billion. Honda ($12.4 billion, down 2 percent) and Nissan ($10.2 billion, up 3 percent) rounded out the top five for the category. Volkswagen was the only other auto brand that finished in the top 100 overall, in 100th place. Audi made the greatest percentage gain over 2012, up 18 percent to $5.5 billion, but finished outside of the top 100. Technology companies dominated the overall list, with Apple, Google and IBM ranking one through three. Couture brand Prada was 2013's biggest gainer, rising by 63 percent over 2012.Toyota passes BMW as most valuable car brand originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 21 May 2013 15:33:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | Email this | Comments
Filed under: Technology One of the largest hurdles facing autonomous vehicles is cost. The technology to implement driverless cars is already here. Google, Audi and other companies have proved over and over again that the tech is viable and at least theoretically safe for public streets, but few people feel comfortable shelling out the $75,000 premium it would take to make your car chauffeur you about. Ionut Budisteanu, a 19-year-old student from Romania, may have found a way to make autonomous driving tech more affordable. Budisteanu won a $75,000 scholarship in the International Science and Engineering Fair for creating a system that uses a cheaper, lower-resolution three-dimensional radar system paired with a webcam in place of the pricey high-definition 3D radar Google uses. As a result, Budisteanu was able to cut costs from $75,000 to $4,000. His system uses artificial intelligence software to identify curbs, lane markings and other small objects on the road with the webcam while the radar system locates people, cars and houses. In his tests, the system performed as intended 47 out of 50 times. He believes he can improve accuracy with a slightly higher definition radar system while still keeping costs low.Student wins Intel science fair with super cheap autonomous car tech originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 21 May 2013 10:14:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | Email this | Comments
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