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Boeing 747-400 – Long Term Test

We 2 years ago, I submitted my “first drive” review of the 747-400. My aim then, was to give my first impressions of the legendary airplane and offer an accessible perspective to both pilots and non-pilots alike. Now it’s been just over 2 years and about 1500 hours of flight …

Podcast: Episode 249 – We peaked awhile ago

Josh Ostrander joins Chris Hayes and myself on this episode of the podcast. We’re recording at 4 Sons Brewing once again, and we have a few things to talk about. Josh still enjoys his boring Alltrack. Chris still wants to sell his Fiesta. I still need to fix things on …

The Velar is a real deal Range Rover but with added style

The trail ahead of me is steep and heavily rutted. My friend in a Toyota 4Runner TRD Pro went before me and made it look easy, though I know that’s not the case. Still, the vehicle in which I’m sitting bears badging that traces a path filled with heritage, history, …

Quick Spin: 2018 Volkswagen Passat 2.0T SEL Premium

There’s a problem with mid-size sedans. They’re not selling. Seriously, no one is buying them. Everyone wants an SUV these days. It’s so much of a problem that Ford, a huge automaker by any measure, gave in and decided “hell, let’s just not make any ‘cars’ for the U.S. market”. …

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Encyclopedia Hoonatica: Turbo things that aren’t turbo

What is so damn special about the word Turbo? It used to appear on everything in the 80s and 90s. One of my first computers was turbocharged – it even had a little flashing light when the so-called turbo would kick in. There are a million others turbo things, too. But this turbo phenomenon hasn’t gone away. Recently SiriusXM added a station called Turbo. It’s plays heavy rock from the 90s and 00s and it actually really great for those who grew up in that time and were influenced by that music. 

But still, turbo. It’s not like the 80s, 90s, or even 00s were the pinnacle of turbocharged engines. We have the more turbo engines available today than ever before. I’m even guessing that the amount of available new turbocharged engines might now outnumber naturally aspirated engines. And they’re better than ever too! The lag has been minimized and they don’t burn oil or blow seals on regular basis. Turbos owe direct-injection a great thanks, too.

Back to the point at hand. Today we want to identify objects, any objects, that are not even remotely related to cars and/or turbochargers, but are turbo or are in some way named turbo. 

The Caveats (there are always caveats):

  • Said object cannot be a car or any part of a car. 
  • It cannot be a car name, or any part thereof. 
  • Exception – a car with the word turbo in its name that wasn’t actually turbocharged or supercharged. 
  • Don’t give us a damn lesson on what a turbocharger and what a supercharger is, or that even nitrous-oxide can be considered a turbocharger. If you’re one of those people who starts conversations with “well, actually…” please STFU. 
  • It’s got a be a full word turbo, not an abbreviation of any kind, like when Audi called its engine 3.0t when it was really supercharged. Lamers. 

Difficulty: 0.3 out of 11, faster with a turbo. 

How This Works: Read the comments first and don’t post duplicates! Bonus points for adding photos.

Boeing 747-400 – Long Term Test

We 2 years ago, I submitted my “first drive” review of the 747-400. My aim then, was to give my first impressions of the legendary airplane and offer an accessible perspective to both pilots and non-pilots alike. Now it’s been just over 2 years and about 1500 hours of flight time and my perspective has shifted a bit. I have a more comprehensive experience with the airplane, and I’ve recently been promoted to the left seat. This then will be a review of the past 2 years of flying the 747 around the world, as well as a peek into the largely unseen world of ACMI cargo flying.

One thing that certainly has not changed is my awe of the airplane. Although it doesn’t seem as gigantic as it first did, it still inspires admiration and satisfaction to fly this airplane. Accelerate down the runway at maximum takeoff weight and the sensation of power and control transmitted to the pilot during the initial climb is one of the most gratifying sensations an airline pilot can experience. With only a few exceptions, this remains one of the biggest and most powerful airplanes to fly.

… Continue Reading

Podcast: Episode 249 – We peaked awhile ago

Josh Ostrander joins Chris Hayes and myself on this episode of the podcast. We’re recording at 4 Sons Brewing once again, and we have a few things to talk about. Josh still enjoys his boring Alltrack. Chris still wants to sell his Fiesta. I still need to fix things on my Benz.

Also I drove an Aston Martin DB11 AMR, and I can’t tell you how that went just yet. But go look at the released specs compared to the current DB11 V12, and read the press release to see the changes and you’ll have a good idea of what’s going on there.

Finally, we dive into some questions before I cut them off to talk negatively about someone else… for good reason.

Spy Shots: 2020 Lincoln Aviator or Ford Explorer

Lincoln has shown the 2020 Lincoln Aviator at the 2018 New York International Auto Show. Our own Robbie was instantly in love with it. And rightfully so, too. Lincoln has recently stepped up its game. The first new model of what I will call Modern Lincoln was the Continental. It looked great inside and out but missed out by being based on an old FWD chassis. Then came the Navigator, which nailed down the design of what we all imagined a modern Lincoln to look like. 

The Aviator is the smaller, but far from small, SUV designed to fit between the Navigator and the upcoming two-row Nautilus. It is based on a new platform with longitudinally mounted drivetrain which will send its power to the rear, or predominantly rear wheels in 4WD applications. This will also underpin the next Ford Explorer. Both vehicles are extremely important to the Ford Motor Company. The Aviator will have to carry the Lincoln brand as it will surely outsell the pricier full-size Navigator. The Explorer has to be the workhorse, capable of being comfortable family vehicle as well as a rugged police cruiser. 

… Continue Reading

The Velar is a real deal Range Rover but with added style

The trail ahead of me is steep and heavily rutted. My friend in a Toyota 4Runner TRD Pro went before me and made it look easy, though I know that’s not the case. Still, the vehicle in which I’m sitting bears badging that traces a path filled with heritage, history, and heaps of mud and dirt along the way. This is a Land Rover. That means the path in front of me can go anywhere I’d like it, within reason. I’m just worried that the level of “reason” afforded me isn’t quite what it used to be… because this particular Land Rover is the new Range Rover Velar.

Is this a quest for more style over true capable substance? Thankfully, the answer is no. The Velar likes to get its fancy skin covered in dirt and far from the beaten path.

… Continue Reading

Redusernab Asks: If you were to visit the ‘Ring, what sort of vehicle would you use to drive ’round it?

I recently returned from a trip to Germany where I stayed in a hotel that’s set right next to the famed Nürburgring. Sadly, my trip didn’t include a lap of the Green Hell but I was able to see a few machines turning laps in anger over the course of the many miles of twisting and turning tarmac.

A handful of outfits have a rental fleet in place should you arrive with an itch to drive. These range from lightly prepped Suzuki Swifts up to Porsche 911 GT3 super coupes and beyond. What sort of vehicle would you want if you arrived at the ‘Ring?

It can be whatever you want, you just have to tell us why you’ve chosen that specific machine. Sound off below.

Nostalgia Express: The Plaxton Viewmaster

Almost five years ago, I posted about one of the buses that tool me to and fro of high school every day in the early 1990s. Its registration number was KJD58p and it had a pretty eventful life, reputedly ending its life as a spare parts donor for one of the open-top Daimler Fleetline sightseeing fleets in North America.

Inevitably, the vast majority of service buses meet their end on the scrapheap. There’s several tonnes of steel in a typical bus, so scrap value remains fairly once service life is over. As a result, most of the buses that I remember from school over twenty years ago have long been turned into Chinese refrigerators. A few weeks ago, though, I found myself climbing up the steps and embarking on a journey to the past.

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The News for May 18th, 2018

Welcome to the Redusernab News! As always, this is a weekly recap of some of the biggest stories in the automotive industry without the fluff or bull. There’s also just a little opinion of mine because I can. This week:

  • Aston Martin Racing has a go with the new DB11

  • BMW confirms new 8 Series debut for Le Mans-eve with revealing image

  • Ford restarts F-150 production today, the remarkable story of their quick recovery

  • What’s your automotive news?

… Continue Reading

Mystery Car

Kamil Kaluski May 18, 2018 Mystery Car

Last week’s Mystery Car was identified pretty quickly by . Special credit should be given because it was an obscure French military vehicle that few people have actually ever seen. The fact that I used a picture that I found on the internet made it somewhat easier. Good job!

But that is not the case this week. Today we have a picture I took myself and it was a of a vehicle that I never wrote about. As usual, make and model, please. Engine for super extra credit. 

Image: ©2018 Redusernab/Kamil Kaluski, All Rights Reserved.

Redusernab Asks: What’s a fun or interesting to do with an old Volvo wagon?

One thing I learned in life is that if an opportunity comes knocking, I shouldn’t rush to the door. I now have an opportunity to own the above 1997 Volvo V90 for an extremely low price. The wagon supposedly runs well. The body is a little beat up, the radio is missing, and the front seat has a rip in the leather. I don’t know what the mileage is. But there is a catch. There is always a catch. 

In order for me take possession of this fine Swedish luxury wagon I have to promise, and follow-up on that promise, to do something cool or interesting with it. And this cool or interesting idea has to be approved by it’s current owner, first. 

My initial thought was to make a Lemons racer out of it because I obviously need a third slow Lemons racer. I did some research. This last of the true brick Volvos has a 2.9-liter inline-six that makes 181 hp at 5,200 rpm and 199 lb-ft of torque at 4,100 rpm and a four-speed automatic. It weights 3461 pounds. This takes it out of contention of being any kind of a race car unless a V8 is swapped into it. A V8, or honestly any other swap is beyond my abilities and budget.

I kept thinking. Perhaps it could make a cool sports wagon – think lowered on some cool wheels, blacked out trim. Or a raised expedition wagon on some off-road tires, with some lights and a roof rack. But for this model, Volvo has ditched the conventional coil springs and installed a single transverse leaf-spring suspension in the back. It’s a design similar to the Corvette. Needless to say, it cannot be raised or lowered, at least not without some serious fabrication. 

I’d love to do something cool with a wagon like this but I really can’t think of anything beyond these options, none of which are great. The best thing to do with it would be to clean it up, fix up some things, and just drive it. Am I missing something? What else could I do with it?

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