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Baby Driver could be the next iconic car movie

Jeff Glucker March 13, 2017 Hoonivercinema

Remember getting hyped up for that Ryan Gosling flick Drive? Yeah that one turned out to be a disjointed movie about: A) a heist driver, B) a love story, or C) a dude on the Autism spectrum who couldn’t say more than a few words yet could head stomp with the best of them. It… wasn’t great. Here to save us from that film is a new driving movie that could have all the right pieces in place.

It’s called Baby Driver, and though the title sounds odd at first it makes sense when you watch the trailer I’ve posted above. We’ve got a team of great actors here, but we’ve also got some cars that appeal to a wide enthusiast base being driven in a manner that shows some serious skill involved.

We’ll have to wait until August to see if this one lives up to the hype I’m generating in my head. Judging by that trailer though? I’m in… this one looks awesome.

Hooniversal Opinion: Top Gear Season 24 Episode One

Jeff Glucker March 13, 2017 Featured, Top Gear

 

Top Gear returns for its 24th season, and the trio picked to lead it all has taken the shape of its final form… we think. Gone is Chris Evans, and in his fiery wake we’re left with Matt LeBlanc, Chris Harris, and Rory Reid. This seems like a proper group of chaps heralded to lead this beloved ship into fresher waters.

So what’s on tap for the first episode of Season 24? Right off the bat you’re going to be hit with an insane visual feast of an insane car that arrives in the shape of the Ferrari FXX K. After that it’s a bit of old-school Top Gear, but it’s done with those three aforementioned folks attacking the challenge at hand.

Here in the Redusernab, we had a chance to preview the episode before it arrived for airing on BBC America. We all gave it a watch, and we’ve decided to chime in with our thoughts on the new series here.

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Podcast: Episode 193 – Dan Sandberg from Brembo at SEMA 2016

Another in our long series of SEMA podcasts; Zack and Chris sat down and had a great talk with Dan Sandberg the President/CEO of Brembo North America. Having spent a number of years in radio, Dan makes one hell of a guest sharing his insights in manufacturing, growing a brand, product development, and just doing good focused business.  

First Drive: Aston Martin DB11

Aston Martin has entered the first stages of its Second Century Plan. Kicking that off is the all-new DB11. Gone is the DB9, and this new beautiful beast is here to replace it. We’ve still got a V12 engine, gorgeous lines, and strong noises… but do we still have an amazing car beneath that lightweight bodywork?

The short answer is “mostly yes”.

Aston Martin have begun to feel the pull of modern requirements and also updated technology. This is good and not-so-good at the same time. The good part stems from the fact that the electronic architecture employed here is taken from Mercedes-Benz. That means all of the interior tech bits work, and work well.

We’re no longer dealing with a naturally aspirated engine, however, and that leads to a bit less of the glorious noise to which we’ve become accustomed on AM cars. Here is a 5.2-liter V12 that’s aided by a pair of turbochargers. The result is an engine producing 600 horsepower and over 515 lb-ft of torque. It’s backed up by the excellent ZF-sourced 8-speed transmission and the power flows to the appropriate wheels.

It’s a new stunner from Aston Martin and it’s a massive leap forward compared to the DB9 which it replaces. Still, there are elements which aren’t perfect. Thankfully, they’re minor and are quickly overlooked because of just how wonderful the rest of the DB11 really is.

[Disclaimer: Aston Martin invited us down to the San Diego area to sample the new DB11. There was a hotel and some food involved as well.]

Quick Spin: Getting the Nissan Armada dirty

It’s finally been raining here in Southern California. I took that as an opportunity to go play in the mud, and I did so with the updated Nissan Armada. No, it’s not the full-on Patrol I was hoping it would be but it’s better than the Armada that we used to get. Still, it would be great if we got the highly capable machine you’d find flying up and over Dubai dunes instead of the dumbed-down mall cruiser you expect to find.

Regardless, having the keys to the Armada and knowing where to go to find puddles of mud (not the band… where would you find them these days?) I knew what I had to do.

For Redusernab-based science.

Podcast: Episode 192 – Hustling along with Andrew Collins in an Aston Martin DB11

Andrew Collins is the freshly minted Reviews Editor of Jalopnik.com. He and I happened to be attending the same wave for the US launch of the new Aston Martin DB11. I took the opportunity to fire up the podcast-o-motron and record a new episode. This takes place while we’re driving the DB11 through the curvy roads of Anza Borrego. You’ll hear the car, Andrew’s adventures in the off-road world, and some speeding done at strictly legal levels.

Podcast: Episode 191 – Muy Bueno!

Friends of the show Jonathon Klein and Jason Connor join Chris and myself in the studio. We talk about the recent DWA Coastal Range Rally, which Connor attended with his Ford Focus ST. Klein tells us about driving the Scarbo F1 replica car, which sounds amazing.

Additionally, there’s some news on the upcoming recording of Episode 200! It will take place on April 3rd at Four Sons Brewery in Huntington Beach. We should get started around 7pm.

After that bit of news, we rush through your questions because we all wanted to go to K1 after and hit up the karting track

First Drive: 2017 Subaru BRZ Performance Package on the track

Subaru has created an affordable, fun, rear-wheel-drive sports car and you know it by the three letters BRZ. Sure, a number of folks would like a lot more power from the thing, but that’s not coming just yet.

For 2017, Subaru has updated a bit of the styling but they’ve also revised the suspension, relaxed the traction control, and are now offering an upgrade called the Performance Package.

Check that box on the order form and you’ll get Sachs dampers, an aluminum rear spoiler, and larger brakes.

Is it worth your money? We trekked all the way to a gorgeous racing circuit in Spain to find out.

[Disclaimer: Subaru put me on a long flight to Spain where there was a great hotel, amazing food, mediocre beer, and delicious wine. Also, we got a tour of the Alhambra, which is a must-visit spot on this planet.]

First Drive: 2017 Kia Niro

2017 Niro – Blue

The worst part about driving a hybrid, is that you’re constantly reminded of the fact that driving enjoyment is no longer a thing about which you care. Sure, you can spend big bucks and get something with a bit of vigor like a Porsche Panamaniac e-Hybrid, but that starts at $100k and I bet you that you’ll end up with enough options that you could’ve thrown a base Macan into the mix as well. Your standard hybrid, however, is quite boring and manages to remind you of this every chance it gets.

Kia is hoping to change that with the introduction of its all new 2017 Niro. This is a vehicle that was built from the outset to be a hybrid. With that in mind, Kia knew it wanted something that was both a mere sipper of fuel yet also functional and enjoyable on a daily basis.

Much like Roman Emperor Nero looked to make his empire a more pleasing place, the Niro hopes to do the same for the hybrid. To see if that is something that’s actually possible in a vehicle not costing you six figures, I trekked to San Antonio, Texas to find out.

…because we know that Texans are rootin’ tootin’ and straight-up hollerin’ for more hybrids.

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McLaren 570S: Your “affordable” super machine

The McLaren 570S is affordable.

Let me clarify… the McLaren 570S is affordable relative to its competition. That’s because it’s a McLaren and it has a starting price of less than $200,000.

This is your chance to drive a McLaren for the same price as a Nissan, an Audi, a Porsche, and a few other expensive machines.

Let’s be real… none of us can afford this thing, but it’s a damned bargain for the space in which it’s competing. This is the McLaren 570S and it’s f**king awesome

 

[Disclaimer: McLaren tossed us the keys to the 570S and included a tank of fuel. I then pretended I was a baller and bought the fancy ketchup at my local whole foods… then gave everyone the finger when I drove off.]

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