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Friday
Jun172016

Snippets 6/17/16

By Christopher A. Sawyer

The Unintended Power of “No Comment”

The Mercedes AMG F1 engine.I recently noticed a major uptick in the number of readers coming to the site focused on one article in particular. Why readers would suddenly flock to an article on technologies designed to improve future fuel economy — and that was over one and a half years old — was perplexing. A quick search discovered articles speculating about which of the F1 engine suppliers was using Turbulent Jet Ignition (TJI), and for how long. Some of these articles pulled directly from my article, while others gave it as a reference, but the increase in readership had multiple spikes. The first took place when Ferrari partnered with Mahle, and adapted TJI to its powertrain for the 2015 season. The most recent came during the run up to the Canadian Grand Prix where Renault was rumored to be using the technology for the first time.

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Friday
May202016

Snippets 5/20/16

By Christopher A. Sawyer


Comedians at Cadillac Making Coffee

Whether I agree or disagree with what he has to say, I always read Peter De Lorenzo’s rants on Autoextremist. This week’s thrashing of Uwe Ellinghaus, Melody Lee and the upper management at GM is worth the read, especially when you see the insanity they have wrought in an attempt to court those oh-so-cool Millennials. You know, the tragically hip youth who don’t have the money to buy a Cadillac. It includes a Cadillac-branded coffee house open to the public that is located inside the luxury brand’s Soho HQ. Perhaps Ellinghaus and Lee should cruise by the Fox Business website to read what CBS 60 Minutes correspondent Lesley Stahl has to say about that generation, and who businesses and advertisers actually should be targeting.

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Friday
May062016

Why I Love The Mitty

By William G. Sawyer

All photos: Daniel H. Sawyer

If you’re fed up with paying outrageous ticket prices to feel like an outsider, or the lack of a hard card limits your ability to experience pro racing up close, vintage motorsport may be the answer. Before you click the Back button and scream, “But they don’t really race,” bear with me.

 Each year my passion for the sport rejuvenates when I attend The Mitty at Road Atlanta. It’s not that I don’t enjoy annual trips to Sebring and Petit Le Mans, or that the hundreds of races I’ve attended over the decades were less than spectacular.  Vintage racing takes you back to a time when innovation was rampant, manufacturer influence played a back seat to manufacturer vs. manufacturer competition, and teams and drivers were accessible. The racing — and some of it is scintillating, like the expertly-driven Mk 1 Ford Escort that devastated its competition in one main feature — is just part of the attraction.

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Friday
May062016

Ferrari, Google and FCA

By Christopher A. Sawyer

Buying a Ferrari for $22.89

It’s not everyday that you can find a bargain like this, but the opportunity to buy a Ferrari for less than $25 was too good to pass up. A quick Internet search showed that this was the real thing, a genuine offering of the famed Maranello, Italy-based automaker. Sinister in black, its styling teetered on being imperious, highlighted by an oversize three-dimensional Scuderia Ferrari shield. I could see myself later in life with long gray hair held in casual but methodical waves, and held in place by hands full of product — just like Ferrari F1 team director Maurizio Arrivabene, even though he’s only one year older than me.

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Friday
May062016

Hybrids: Gateway to Plug-ins and EVs?

The April/May edition of NADA Used Car Guide's Perspective report looks at the retention values of internal combustion (gasoline or diesel) vehicles against those with alternative powertrains (hybrids, plug-in hybrids, electrics, natural gas and fuel cells). And while alternative powertrains have gained traction, they are still a tiny part of the overall new vehicle market.

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