Stay safe on your motorcycle this winter

В рубриках: Automobile | Автор: admin 28.08.2011

Stay Safe on Your Motorcycle This Winter

Motorbike riding can be hazardous even for the most levelheaded and conservative of riders, as demonstrated by Department for Transportation statistics showing that there were 21,550 reported motorbike casualties in 2008, of which 6,049 resulted in death or serious injury, and the risk noticeably increases as weather and road conditions get worse. Some motorcycle riders will retire their motorcycles during the winter season but for many people, in particular those who commute on their bikes, that isn’t an option. Nevertheless, by exercising added care and using good sense, it is possible to minimise the risk.

Accomplished riders are familiar enough with their motorcycle to know how it handles, and how to ride safely. But as riding in winter time is completely unlike from riding in summer time, and for less experienced motorcyclists who haven’t yet ridden during the winter months, it is worth reminding yourself of the safety precautions that should be taken. Bear in mind though safety is never a guarantee, irrespective how much care is taken, so make sure that you are covered by appropriate bike insurance just in case.

Safety precautions that apply all year round should be followed with marked watchfulness in the winter months. It makes sense to give the motorbike a quick once over before riding it, to ensure that the tyres, lights and brakes are in working order. When checking the tyres, make certain that the pressure and treads are in proper condition for handling icy or wet roads, and remember that in colder temperatures it takes tyres longer to warm up and start gripping properly so be particularly careful when heading out.

It is essential to check that the lights work properly seeing that visibility is even more of an issue during poor weather conditions. Not only will fog or rain diminish what you can see, it will make you more difficult to be seen, so make sure you are extremely visible by wearing bright reflective outer clothing and by keeping your headlight on. To assist keeping your own line of sight clear, make certain your mirrors and visor are clean and unscratched, and spray them with an anti-mister. Additionally be mindful that visibility is still an issue on a bright and sunny winter’s day, when there is no rain, snow, fog or mist since the low winter sun that is blinding you is also blinding other drivers.

Keeping yourself warm may seem like an peculiar safety tip but warmth is all-important seeing that the colder you are, the more your concentration wanes, so wear thin layers to keep body heat trapped and wear any additional cold weather clothing you are comfy wearing. Cold hands don’t make for safe riding, seeing that once they get too cold you risk losing control of the motorcycle, so keep your hands especially warm with heated gloves or even heated handlebars. Purchase some proper rainwear for those rainy days, and generally speaking try to stay as warm and dry as possible.

It goes without saying that you have to be alert on wet and icy roads, keep your speed down and leave additional distance between you and other vehicles to account for those few added seconds of stopping time in an emergency. Be cautious of black ice and additionally keep in mind that on a sunny day there may still be ice on the road, especially in shady areas that the sun has not reached, and be wary of rain slicked roads. Rain fall brings oily residue to the road surface, making the roads particularly slippery. Stay off painted lines when possible, or be especially careful if crossing over them, as they can become highly slippery when wet.

It is in general advisable not to go out on your motorbike on snowy roads if it can be helped, but if you are out in the snow ride slowly and avoid making sudden moves that could cause the bike to topple over or skid. Some riders opt to ride in car tracks that have already been made in the snow, therefore avoiding fresh snow that will spray up and reduce visibility and also get stuck in the tyres and lessen the tyres’ grip, in which case ride cautiously on the compacted snow.

As for windy days, take special care as there is a danger of being blown off course slightly during high winds and you should keep a heedful eye out for any objects that might be blown into your path.

Motorbike upkeep is also a basic safety measure. Snow, ice and the salt on roads after a snow fall can all build up on your motorbike, corroding it. So make sure that you wipe down your motorbike after every ride, or better still hose and wash all the mess away. Your motorcycle needs to stay in top condition for you to ride safely.

With practice comes experience, so the more winter riding you do the more comfortable and undaunted you will become, just ensure that you avoid complacency and remain watchful and sensible at all times. The safety of you, your motorbike and everyone around you is at stake, so follow the necessary precautions, don’t take riding during the winter frivolously and if you still need an added incentive don’t forget that a clean record keeps your bike insurance rates down so you will also be doing your wallet a favour by staying safe.

Hamlins team wins pit crew challenge

В рубриках: Automobile | Автор: admin 15.06.2011

Hamlin’s Team Wins Pit Crew Challenge

At the Coca-Cola 600 held at the Lowe’s Motor Speedway, Denny Hamlin finished ninth after the grueling 600 miles of racing. During the latter stages of the race, Hamlin opted to go to the pit lane for fuel. This move cost him a possible top five finish since those who took the top four spots gambled and did not go into the pit lane to have their fuel topped up. While the ninth place finish is enough to keep Hamlin on the fourth spot at this season’s championship race, it was the job that his pit crew performed that drew some attention. His pit crew won the weekly Checkers/Rally’s Double Drive-Thru Challenge. The win by the pit crew moved them to the second spot overall for the entire season.

The 423.882 time that Hamlin’s pit crew posted gave them the win at the Pit Crew Challenge. Hamlin has this to say about his team’s performance: “It was another good night for the No. 11 FedEx crew in Charlotte. Our team chemistry is really good right now and it’s showing in our performance across the board. We are getting closer to that win every week and with this crew I know we’re going to get it soon. I wouldn’t be surprised if they win more awards for their efforts.”

Winning the challenge means that Hamlin’s pit crew will be taking home $11,000 as their prize. At the conclusion of the ongoing Nextel Cup Series, the team with the most wins will be receiving $111,150. Hamlin’s pit crew is composed of: Scott Wood (jackman), Scott Merritt (front-tire carrier), Dennis Terry (front-tire changer), Heath Cherry (rear-tire carrier), Jonathan Sherman (rear-tire changer), Brad Rothlin (gasman), John Eicher (catch can) and Bobby Christensen (eighth-man). These men provide a good support for Hamlin which has enabled him to perform at a respectable level so far this season. The team changes tires, and refills Hamlin’s car with fuel during races much like one would change,

Weathertec mats on their road cars.

So far, Hamlin’s team has won three races this season. The first one came in Bristol at the Food City 500 held last March 25. During that race, Hamlin finished 14th. The second win posted by the No. 11 FedEx crew came during the Subway Fresh Fit 500 held at the Phoenix International Raceway in Avondale, Arizona. During that race, Denny Hamlin finished third on his Chevrolet Impala. With fourteen more races before the Chase for the Cup, Hamlin needs his team to continue the way they are performing to ensure his place at the ten-race series which will determine the champion this season.

Saab reveals another crossover

В рубриках: Automobile | Автор: admin 07.06.2011

Saab Reveals Another Crossover

The Swedish car maker Saab is reportedly planning to expand their line up in the next coming years. This is why they are launching another model; an all-wheel-drive system they say can set a huge competition against their rivals’ line up of luxury brands.

General Motors may have been experiencing major financial concerns but their Swedish luxury brand is becoming better than ever. The success of Saab is all accounted to Steve Shannon, who has been doing a lot of efforts for the Saab operations in the US as well as in the other car market for the last six months.

Although Saab has been into a lot of challenges, the Swedish brand managed to overcome all these. Both European and Asian brands are currently dominating the auto market with the likes of BMW and Lexus — regarded as small vehicles, but Saab has remained strong in the market for years. With the present demand on small cars, Saab has also embraced the idea of building a small CUV for the market.

According to Shannon, “It’s not easy, when you’re a company that makes 9 million cars a year to figure out how to steward a company that makes 130,000.” He added, “We’re getting better at it.”

Currently in the market is Saab’s major update of 9-3 — currently the cheapest and the smallest model coming out this 2008. The new car follows the same finishing done on the 9-5 line which has been made bigger and fresher after not having any revision for far too long.

The new car will also undergo several tests in order to secure its safety. Saab will launch the first crossover vehicle which has been dubbed to its 9-4X — the name, however, needs to be decided first.

The new crossover is going to be made in the US but Saab. More car makers are doing crossover vehicles to supply the demands of the growing market. And other car makers are looking for more alternatives on the present SUV, Saab for its part, is doing the simplest approach.

Shannon commented saying, “We will not make the mistake of some other manufacturers trying to make a ‘tweener,’ somewhere between a car and a truck. We will not take any risks with this.”

The soon to be launched Saab will come equipped with the new all-wheel-drive system, Dubbed Cross-Wheel Drive as well as the XWD. The company did not mention anything about Saab distributor caps but the new crossover will be released next year together with 9-3 line.

Nissan set to thrill

В рубриках: Automobile | Автор: admin 07.06.2011

Nissan Set to Thrill

Japanese automaker Nissan is set to wow the auto industry at the upcoming Tokyo Motor Show. As early as today, the automaker has already attracted the attention of the industry with its concept cars. reported that the Japanese automaker will showcase four concept vehicles which “incorporate new and exciting ideas for future models”.

The most popular among these four concept vehicles is the Pivo 2. The first Pivo was unveiled two years ago and has captured the attention of the auto industry and motor show attendees. Due to the concept car’s ability to rotate the cabin completely, a reverse gear is not needed. The new Pivo is set to once again wow the auto industry with its cutting edge technology. Aside from its ability to turn around in place, the new Pivo boasts of a new feature – a Robotic Agent which has the ability to connect the car to the driver.

The Pivo 2 is also an eco-friendly vehicle. It is powered by a compact Li-ion battery pack. Earlier this year, Nissan has announced that they will be developing Li-ion batteries for automotive application and the development of the Pivo 2 is a clear indication that Nissan is making progress in that endeavor.

Another concept car that the Japanese automaker is slated to unveil at the upcoming Tokyo Motor Show is the Round Box. The said vehicle is designed by Nissan for the youth. describes the Round Box as something that “represents a new take on open-air motoring, providing exhilaration for all passengers – not just the driver – through its uniquely shared experience of fresh air stimulation, a sensation of speed and easy-to-use high-spec features”.

One unique feature of the Round Box is its “road surface windows”. These are essentially small glass panels installed close to the ground on both sides of the car. Through these “windows”, passengers are given a view of the passing road surface.

Another concept car that Nissan will showcase at the Tokyo Motor Show is the Nissan Intima. This show car shows the way ahead for the Japanese automaker just like Dodge Altezza lights. According to the automaker, the vehicle is designed for “people with a sophisticated, discerning eye for beauty – who enjoy spending time in refined elegance and comfort”. The description makes the concept car more related to the Infiniti division of the automaker.

The luxurious car has a front seat that swivels about 80 degrees to the outside. This makes boarding the vehicle easier. Both on the outside and the cabin of the concept car, one can see that the automaker has designed wit with luxury in mind. Clean lines on the outside and artistic rendering on the inside of the car are what make the car an attention-grabber.

The fourth concept car to be unveiled by Nissan at the upcoming event is the NV200. This concept car is designed as a “smart business tool of new generation – for active professionals”. The NV200 combines a front cab with a traditional box-like storage space. The storage space is customizable making it easy for traveling professionals to efficiently store their equipments.

Mazda carol more than just a restyle

В рубриках: Automobile | Автор: admin 30.04.2011

Mazda Carol: More Than Just a Restyle

Just like any other auto manufacturer in the automotive industry, the Mazda Motor Corporation also has got its own set of products that can be said to be exclusive for one market only. For example, Mazda may be selling its Mazda Miata custom parts in Japan but the company has already thought of not selling the mentioned products in Africa.

There are various reasons to why auto manufacturers do their business this way. One very common reason would be that some vehicles (or vehicle parts, for that matter) has been created and suited just for one market and would never make it big for other industries. Indeed, this is very much plausible.

In this regard, the Mazda Motor Corporation has previously created vehicles that would only be sold in its mother country, Japan. One vehicle exclusively sold here is the Mazda Carol and it is not just a vehicle sold just for the Christmas season. This Mazda Carol has been built to be a micro-mini vehicle and it now sports a fresh new look and design.

If you take a real close look at the Mazda Carol, you would most likely be thinking “Hello Kitty” or perhaps “female”. You see, the Mazda Carol has been created to be a real good choice for women drivers. It may not be really pink or really that woman-ish but it has got an aura that just seems to have been made with the females in mind. Women in Japan have found the Mazda Carol to be their type of vehicle because its design is feminine and it also is a very practical choice for the gender.

The new look that the Mazda Carol shows off is quite charming. Many have noticed that the vehicle now comes with a changed and redesigned front fascia. The seats and the door trim designs have also gone through a restyling. However, the physical features are not only the things which went through changes. Mazda is very proud to say that the Mazda Carol also has been made to be eco-friendly and also has a great fuel economy.