Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Top 10 Green Cars in New York Auto Show

Last time I have posted about New York Auto Show 2009 and it was cool for you to be there. I think current international auto show trend is all about green cars show. So what is actually green car? To make it simple, "green" means an alternative fuel, not just gas-electric hybrid: natural gas, diesel, hydrogen, electric-only; two, three, or four wheels. For example, if you can get 50 mpg in a clean diesel, that's "green" in my understanding. Also, "green" also includes expensive and exotic USD75k+ electric sports cars, which means the word "payback period" isn't in the automaker's dictionary. Anyway, below are the top 10 green cars can be found in the New York Auto Show:

1. Mercedes-Benz E250 Bluetec concept

2. Fisker S (Sunset) concept

3. Chevrolet Volt

4. Honda FCX Clarity Fuel-Cell

5. BMW X6 Hybrid

6. GM/Segway PUMA

7. Chrysler 2000 EV

8. Toyota Prius

9. Mercedes-Benz ML450 Hybrid

10. Mercury Milan / Ford Fusion


Monday, April 27, 2009

India Road Traffic Signs Jokes

1. Somebody emailed me these road signs pictures that can be found in India. They are funny but the words are true. Please take lessons from these signages. "Don't dream, otherwise you will scream". Meaning don't sleep while driving!

2. Be Gentle on my Curves. Well, no comment hehe.

3. Drive like Hell and you'll be there. Indeed, don't be the cause of other's people misery.

4. This is highway, not a runway. Exactly.

5. Accident begins where alertness ends. Very true.

6. Hospital ceiling are boring to look at avoid accident. Weird sentence but I know you guys got what it means right?

7. Be slower on the earth than quicker to eternity. Haha.

8. Mind your brakes or break your mind. Please check your car regularly.

9. Live for your today, drive for your tomorrow. Just be careful.

10. Make love not war but nothing while driving. Don't make love when driving!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Classic Ford Mustang Photos

1. Today I found really interesting photos of Ford Mustang. They look vulgar, classic, and tough. That's why I love them. But I wonder how they look alike after collision and also their safety performance. But I try not to think about that since they are just old cars, just give them a break right? :D Now enjoy the photos.

For More Ford Mustang Photos

Friday, April 24, 2009

The World's First Electric Cars Invented in 1884??!

1. Have you ever thought that actually the first electric car was made in 1884? Yes, you better trust me. The world's first electric car has been built by British inventor named Thomas Parker. But for some reason, the electric cars during those times don't work out so well. Or maybe due to political reason, the mass production of electric cars was not possible.

2. Now the work has been done and continued by his ancestors. Even not as great as any other great car company like Mitsubishi and Honda, they are winning on the efforts. As quote from the Dailymail:

Thomas Parker's son, Thomas Hugh Parker shared his father's flair for design and innovation, even building a steam powered car in 1901 before later working on modern car features such as hydraulic brakes and four wheel steering. He also claimed to have invented the spark plug, monoblock engine and the carburettor. And these days the tradition lives on through Graham Parker's oldest son, Alun, who is also an engineer who has worked on projects ranging from the West Coast mainline to the Panama Canal, and Crossrail.

3. Electric cars are not only clean but also cheap. The instability oil and gas price in the world market now should be the one which will trigger the research and make the electric cars produced in mass production so that we will not dependent anymore on irreplaceable energy anymore such as coal and petroleum. However in term of safety, of course, more research need to be done as currently as far as I know the electric cars are usually smaller in size and that alone will invite some problems during any road crash.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Chinese GS Motor Cheap Car Sold in Walmart!

1. India is not the only country in the world which release very cheap and affordable cars (Tartar) for people as China just recently join the "parade" of cheap cars. In fact, the Chinese GS Motor car has been sold 4000 units in Mexico last year and don't be shocked if I told you they sold in the supermarket such as Wal-mart and Tesco!

2. For most people, safety is the most important element to be considered when buying a car. But, for poor people, safety comes with the price. As a result many people in 3rd countries used motorcycle as a mean of transportation. As a result the death rate on the road is increasing each year.

3. Cheap cars from Tartar and GS motor are indeed very lack of safety features required for a good car but in my opinion, compared to the motorcycle which been frequently used in India and Chine, these cheap cars are somewhat 10 times better.

Auto critics have ridiculed the cars for both design and quality flaws. But hey, Japanese and Korean cars once received the same treatment. And I think it’s safe to say that Honda and Toyota got their footing. Hybrid Cars reported that GS is building an assembly plant in Michoacan, Mexico, with the China-based FAW Group who has formed joint ventures with automobile giants such as Volkswagen, Toyota and Mazda. GS Motors will launch the FAW brand in Mexico this year with the F1 Hatchback, an entry-level car sold for under $5,500. FAW, one of the largest Chinese automakers, is allied in China with Volkswagen.

4. In conclusion, it is a matter of choice. Please optimize your safety practice on the road. For example, using car is better than motorcycle, and if you can't get great safety car, please improve your driving style. I hope this might optimize your safety on the road.


Monday, April 20, 2009

Bus Crash at Rawang 6 Died General Investigation Findings

1. Today I read a letter in News Straits Times entitled No Reason to Keep Findings a Secret with regard to the latest bus crash at Rawang, involving 6 deaths. The author of the letter was conveying his concerns and disappointment to the authorities who mostly try not to share the findings on public. To be truth, there are many reasons to not share it on the public but from my opinion, even so, it is quite unfair to the public. They are actually deserved to know as this is a national issue.

2. This is the preliminary findings in response to the letter. I personally went to the crash site the day of the accident and MIROS has been given task to do the analysis and reconstruct the crash to determine the cause of the accident. Let me start with the sketch diagram of the crash, as shown below and go through with the issues.

3. Speeding. So basically, based on the evidence found from the crash site (skid marks and etc), the bus went to the middle guardrail, hit it, bounced a bit and then hit back, then bounce straight to the rest position. Based on conservation of energy theory, we determine that the speed before the bus hit the median was in the range of 87.1km/h to 100.2km/h with assumption the speed of the bus after it left the median area to the rest position was 10km/h and 50km/h respectively.

4. Improper Guardrail Installation. The W-Beam has been installed on the embankment slope. From the standard guidelines, the slope must not exceed 9.46 degrees but we found the slope of installation was at 23 degrees. Also, the required dynamic clearance for installation was supposedly is 1.2m but on the site, we found it to be only 0.5m.

5. Guardrail Intrusion Mechanism. The W-beam broke off from the mounting post leaving its end hanging and intruded the frontal part of the bus through the metal sheet which is vulnerable with such impact. The section intruded deep into the bus longitudinally which killed ALL six (6) passengers of the lower deck. The guardrail would have not intruded the inside of the bus if the contact impact was resisted by the strong and stiff structure of the bus chassis at the right level height.

6. Driver Fatigue at Wee Hours. Nobody can drive normally during wee hours as our body biological clock is meant only to rest and sleeping during this time. The bus driver was in fatigue condition and possibly falls asleep based on pre impact skid mark before crash (parallel with road stretch).

7. In conclusion, this is just general findings (specific ones are still confidential) and these analyses are not meant to blame anybody. It is solely means for the research and recommendations to related government agencies for improvement in the future so that no similar cases will be happening again.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Single Type Vehicle Accident and Driving Tips

1. What is an airborne-type rollover? If we look on any car carefully, the top of the vehicle usually did not have scratches but only crumple damages which indicate they were actually indirect damages caused by direct damage at either left or right side of the car. What is the initial cause of rollover? The first impact should be from the side of the car. The driver hit any road furniture and then, impulsively will try to steer back the car to the opposite site and this sudden steer will be the cause of rollover where the right-side tyres got all the weight and being a pivot for rollover to happen as shown in figure below.

Mazda Galway Crash 32. Based on my knowledge, rollover type of accidents are usually not involving fatalities, except during the accident, the vehicle got second collision with other things.

3. Feeling sleepy due to fatigue is a normal scenario among drivers. But even so, it is not an excuse or being a reason to blame if anything happens. As a driver, you are responsible for your life and especially those occupants inside the car you drive. Well, this is what I usually did when I feel sleepy:

a) Stop at any gas station or rest area to buy a cup of strong coffee. Before heading back to the car, I'll buy at least 2 units of energy booster drinks like Tongkat Ali Poweroot, Livita or Redbulls. Yeah some of you might say, "It is very expensive, especially those sell at the rest area". It is very true, but instead of thinking that they are expensive, asks yourself, which one is more expensive, the live (s) inside the car or those drinks.

b) Slap your face hard when you feel sleepy. I really did this and ouchhh..

c) Chat with somebody inside the car. Don't let everybody sleeps in the car or if they did, tuned on radio loudly so they can't sleep haha.

d) Sing a song loudly if you were alone. Doesn't matter if your voice good or bad, nobody knows but make sure your car windows are closed as we don't want to be the cause of other vehicle accident. And sing slowly if there was somebody else inside the car.

e) Open your energy booster drinks and drink it. Remember, you already bought these and please use them.

f) If all of above are not working, I will just pull off and sleep somewhere. :)

4. I hope this post will be a lesson for the readers and my tips on how to feel fresh all the time during long journey travel will somewhat benefit you.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Mini/Small Car Buyers Sacrifice Safety?

1. Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) was recently testing crash on 3 small or mini cars which were Smart for Two, Honda Fit and Toyota Yaris with a middle car. The purpose of the test crash is to determine whether the mini cars are crashworthy during collision with a bigger-size car or not. What they found as follows.

..All three models tested — the Honda Fit, the Toyota Yaris and the Smart Fortwo— fared poorly in the collisions. By contrast, the midsize models into which they crashed fared well or acceptably. Both the minicars and midsize cars were traveling 40 miles per hour, so the crash occurs at 80 m.p.h.

2. There is an issue or debate on fuel save or safety. The current trend shows many people prefer to buy small-size cars due to economically proved can save lots of gas, which implicitly means our money. However by doing so, you will make a big trade-off by sacrificing your safety. So is it worth?

The argument over weight versus safety is not a new one but took on greater significance when gasoline prices rose sharply last year, making minicars more popular. Consumers also seek out vehicles that burn less fuel so they will contribute less to global warming. Production of carbon dioxide, the main heat-trapping gas, is proportional to fuel use, and the Smart claims to be the highest-mileage car powered by gasoline on the American market.

3. It is a matter of fact that during any collision, a lighter car tends to absorb more collision energy. For example, if Perodua Kancil collided with Mitsubishi Pajero, Kancil is more likely to have great deformation due to according to mass ratio theory, the bigger the weight difference, the bigger the severity to the lighter vehicle will have.

4. Bear in mind, the fact that the small car is not safe has been tested on among very safe mini cars in the world. How about Malaysian Perodua Viva or Proton Savvy? Even very safe mini cars failed to compromise our safety. So please think and consider this before you buy any new car.


Thursday, April 16, 2009

Trailer Driver Saved Using Safety Seatbelt

1. Can you imagine the incident like this? The driver saved due to he was using his seatbelt. Lucky huh? Here is the quote and details of the news:

A lucky truck driver had a miraculous escape when his lorry smashed through crash barriers and was left dangling 100ft over the ground. But Zhian Feng escaped with his life - because he was wearing his seat belt. Terrified Feng watched helplessly as his container plunged onto the street below in Chengdu, China, while his cab hung onto the barrier by just its front bumper.

Witness Lu Wi said: 'We heard an amazing bang and went out to see what was happening. 'We saw a lorry hanging over the bridge, and a man in his 40s struggling to climb out. When he got out the driver said he was lucky he had his seat belt on or he'd have fallen straight out of his open window.'

Local residents reportedly said the accident happened on a narrow stretch of road with a sharp turn which was only suitable for smaller vehicles. They said it was not
the first time lorries had had accidents there - but local road management officials insisted they were not to blame.

2. So what are you waiting for? I think this is the good example to encourage you to wear the safety seatbelt. :)


Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Proton Exora Pictures from the Showroom

1. Last night, Proton has launched its first Proton Exora MPV. The launched has been initiated by new Prime Minister of Malaysia, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak. Even before the launching, the Proton Exora has received at least 2500 unit orders and the number will be increasing as all Proton showrooms around the nation were opened up until 2am last night just to accomodate curious Malaysian buyers.

2. The price range for mid-line Exora is about RM70k and the hi-line Exora is about RM76k. Here are some photos from one of many Proton showrooms on the new Proton Exora. Have a look.

Friday, April 10, 2009

New York Auto Show 2009 Photos

Hummer H3T Crew Cab Alpha 2009
Hummer H3T Crew Cab Alpha 2009

1. New York International Automobile Show 2009 will be publicly held from 10 April 2009 to 19 April 2009 from 11am - 10:30pm (Sundays: 10am - 7pm). So meaning it is not too late because you still do have time to attend the auto show. The location will be at Jacob Javits Convention Center 11th ave between 34 & 39 Streets. Bring your family and enjoy the show.

2. The theme motto for the Auto show is Expect the Unexpected. Below are some of the photos of the auto show. Enjoy!

Saturn Sky Red Line 2009
Saturn Sky Red Line 2009

Chevy Camaro 2010
Chevy Camaro 2010

Mustang Shelby GT500 Coupe 2010
Mustang Shelby GT500 Coupe 2010

GM and Segway P.U.M.A.
GM and Segway P.U.M.A.

Honda Mugen
Honda Mugen

Ford Taurus
Inside a Ford Taurus

Scion xD
Scion xD

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