Xtrac develops cheaper gearbox that behaves like dual-clutch

xtrac igs 437x300 Xtrac develops cheaper gearbox that behaves like dual clutch

Dual-clutch transmissions are the current Holy Grail when it comes to transferring underhood power to the wheels of the car. Nearly every automaker that does serious business around the world offers DCTs, and the ones that don’t very likely soon will.

It’s easy to understand the draw of the DCT: better performance and greater efficiency. But there are also problems. For instance, two clutch mechanisms mean (theoretically, of course) twice the potential repair costs, and DCTs are generally more expensive than either standard manual transmissions or conventional automatics with torque converters.

Xtrac, a company firmly entrenched in transmissions for racing applications, has developed a new technology called the Instantaneous Gearchange System, which uses a ratcheting mechanism to couple the gear hubs with the main shaft. The system has been under development for two years and has reportedly been put into race duty by multiple motorsports teams.

Apparently, the IGS technology will be less costly than other dual-clutch transmissions and could potentially be adopted by various global automakers.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by dailycar - December 5, 2010 at 1:14 pm

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2011 Dodge Challenger SRT8 dyno’d – is the 392 underrated?

challenger 392 dyno 450x300 2011 Dodge Challenger SRT8 dynod   is the 392 underrated?

Hemi. The mere mention of the word is enough to strike fear into the hearts of lesser powerplants… or at least images of a pair of scrubby-looking bottom-feeders that really love themselves some Ram Trucks. In any case, we’re keenly interested in the latest Hemi engine from the Dodge Boys, in this case displacing a heady 392 (or so) cubic inches and placed gently inside the engine bay of the 2011 Challenger SRT8.

Not only is this new Hemi larger than the already oversized version it replaces, it’s also considerably more potent. The Pentastar says that its new 392 kicks out 470 horsepower and 470 pound-feet of torque – substantial improvements over the outgoing SRT8′s 425 hp/420 lb-ft. But those are factory ratings, and we all know those don’t necessarily match what’s actually under the hood of production models.

Thankfully, the crew over at Inside Line managed to score enough time with a 2011 Challenger SRT8 to strap it down to a proper dyno. And the results? How about 452 horses at 6200 RPM and 443 lb-ft at 4400? Yep, that’ll do nicely, and it means that Dodge may actually be underrating its potent performer just a tad. Oh, and for what it’s worth, IL managed to record 370 horses and 343 lb-ft from its 2010 Chevrolet Camaro SS on the same exact dyno. Chevy’s answer ought to be coming in the form of a Z28 with over 500 supercharged ponies… Stay tuned, the horsepower wars are clearly still in full swing.

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Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by dailycar - December 4, 2010 at 11:41 am

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Democrats and Republicans agree on higher gas taxes, just not in public all the time

erskine bowles alan simpson 450x298 Democrats and Republicans agree on higher gas taxes, just not in public all the time

There is a sport in Washington D.C. that comes around like deer season every year: the gas tax debate. And stepping into the clearing this week with brown overcoats and deer antler hats are some former legislators and government officials – none of whom have to run for office – who are recommending a 15-cent additional federal gas tax starting in 2013 to help trim the federal budget deficit.

This measure has about as much chance of getting through the new Congress as a proclamation that would make Earth Day a national bank holiday. Still, given the fact that the Feds have laid a claim to my nine-year old son’s unborn children’s piggybanks, it’s worth a few minutes to air out the subject.

The co-chairman of the bipartisan deficit reduction commission, former Clinton Administration official Erskine Bowles and former Republican Senator Alan Simpson, have called for a sweeping set of reforms in the way of taxes, spending cuts and elimination of a myriad of tax credits and deductions to which we have grown accustomed – mortgage interest for one.
The 15-cent per gallon hike in Federal gas taxes is paltry by European standards, but would be used specifically for transportation infrastructure improvement: roads, bridges, etc.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by dailycar - at 11:40 am

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Proton builds itself a Mitsubishi Evolution

00 proton jabat concept 1291409805 450x300 Proton builds itself a Mitsubishi Evolution

The Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution is such a good car, it seems that Malaysian automaker Proton decided it ought to offer a version of its own. Sort of. While the company’s Jebat Concept, which was just shown off at the Kuala Lumpur Motor Show, is styled to look like the Evolution, it’s actually powered by the 237-horsepower, 2.0-liter turbocharged mill used in the slightly less potent Ralliart model.

Nobody seems to know at the moment if the Jebat Concept has any shot at production, but its existence isn’t all that surprising considering that Proton just recently launched the Inspira, itself an almost exact copy of the standard Mitsubishi Lancer. In any case, it’s clearly differentiated from its siblings by virtue of its matte black front and rear fascias and side sills, along with a Proton-specific grille. See for yourself in the image gallery below.

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Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by dailycar - at 11:39 am

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Race-Star ConverTTable may be the coolest coffee table we’ve ever seen

racestar converttable lede 450x300 Race Star ConverTTable may be the coolest coffee table weve ever seen

A driving wheel sounds like a nice addition for any racing video game, but in reality it might not work as well as you hope. You have to find a place to mount the wheel and a make sure your pedals aren’t sliding around the floor. It’s not that much of a hassle, but a dedicated space for both wheel and pedals would be nice… throw in a racing seat and the virtual-racing ante has officially been upped.

But where would you store something like that and how do you craft it so as not to be a total eye-sore? Austrian company Race-Star has the answer and it comes in the form of the ConverTTable.

What appears to be a fairly basic box table actually hides a special gaming secret. The ConverTTable unfolds to reveal a driving wheel, adjustable pedals and a track mounted racing bucket. You can slide it in front of your TV and the Nürburgring on Gran Turismo 5 goes from a controller-hucking experience to a carousel-shredding event. When it’s time to shut down the fun, simply fold the table back up and it turns right back into drink-holding furniture.
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Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by dailycar - at 11:35 am

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