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Rearview camera law – is it worth the cost?

Two months ago the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHSTA) made a proposal for mandatory installation of rearview cameras in all 2014 passenger vehicles. Passing this law would be another landmark in vehicle safety control, and would one day be a safety feature as familiar as the seat belt or air bag. It is interesting to think that rearview cameras have always been thought of as a luxury feature, and should now be considered commonplace according to lawmakers.

The main question is how much safety this feature produces, and if it is worth the cost to automakers that consumers ultimately incur.

Earlier this month a 3-year-old boy was accidentally run over as his older brother was backing out of the driveway. This story is part of a bigger picture, as nearly 1,000 people have died as a result of back-over accidents since 2008. The NHTSA estimates that 221 deaths and 14,000 injuries result per year in the U.S. due to such accidents (article).

The cost to add a camera and screen to a vehicle is roughly $200. This amount would ultimately be factored into the price the consumer pays when a car is purchased.

Essentially this is a tax on the consumer to benefit public welfare. Such policies are often debated, as many individuals would argue that we should leave it up to the carmakers to decide on the features they provide.

On the other hand, a rearview camera is a plausible solution that could reduce the number of deaths and injuries that result from back-over accidents. Moreover, $200 is not a significant amount when purchasing a new car, and that cost could likely decrease as the market find less expensive solutions to manufacturing and installing the components.

When human safety is involved, short-term sacrifices can often yield long-term benefits. The value of a life could certainly offset the cost of a rearview camera.

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Select Luxury Cars, located in Marietta, Ga. on Highway 41, hand “Selects” every vehicle. We specialize in the highest quality automobile made all over the world. Whether you live here in the Atlanta area or anywhere around the world, we will find the exact car you are dreaming of. If you are looking for a Mercedes, BMW, Bentley, Rolls-Royce, Lamborghini, Ferrari or other high end model, begin your search here.

Categories: Uncategorized

Lamborghini SUV Concept

April 23, 2012 Leave a comment

Lamborghini is adding another component to its arsenal, which currently includes the sports cars Gallardo (V10, $180k and Aventador (V12, $375k). This time, however, they are introducing an SUV known as the Urus (CNN).

The decision to create an SUV rather than sedan in part hinges on the belief that sedans are “less emotional”, as one Lamborghini spokesperson put it. With  Bentley’s recent release of it’s own SUV concept, and data from Ford showing that one in three vehicles purchased in the US last year were SUVs, the Italian super-automaker is making a competitive business decision.
The basic design resembles the BMW X6, and represents a new class of high-end SUV crossovers soon to erupt in the industry. The Porsche Cayenne and Panamera may have been precursors to the diversification of vehicle type among elite manufacturers such as Lamborghini and Bentley. Soon we may expect other top names like Ferrari and Aston Martin to apply their engineering and design concepts to a sports utility vehicle.
Despite its resemblance to the X6, the Lamborghini Urus would certainly overshadow it with a 640 horsepower engine and price tag well into the high $100k’s. It would also feature handling in the scope of Lamborghini sports cars, and cameras in the place of side view mirrors to check  your blind spots.
As Lamborghini currently sells 2000 cars a year, they would plan to make 3000 of the Urus available to the market. The design concept, production plan, and unconventional approach for the sports car automaker point to a new class of high ticket vehicle that will develop further in years to come.
Inaya Sabbak
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Cadillac outdoes Ferrari?

April 12, 2012 Leave a comment

In a recent commercial Cadillac boasts about an innovative suspension technology in its CTS-V Coupe they claim Ferrari borrowed in its own 458 Italia. This technology, known as “magnetorheological shock absorption “, essentially works via a computer chip that continuously adjusts the magnetic field within the shocks to manipulate the viscosity, or ease of flow, of a fluid containing tiny iron particles.
When the magnetic field is applied the iron bits will align, and the fluid, usually an oil, will flow less freely. When the magnetic field’s intensity decreases the opposite occurs, causing the suspension to become less rigid.

The computer chip, also known an an electronic control unit (ECU), is smart enough to detect the bumps in the road and signal the appropriate magnetic field intensity causing the fluid filled shocks to stabilize the car’s suspension. What’s even more impressive is that these calculations are performed nearly continuously – every millisecond – and are isolated for each tire, creating a smoother driving experience.
The only downside to this system is cost, but it is well worth it to a car enthusiast. Given the seamless mechanics of this suspension, it is easy to understand why Chevy has adapted it to the Corvette, Audi to the TT and R8, and yes, Ferrari to a few of its models.

Inaya Sabbak

Select Luxury Cars, located in Marietta, Ga. on Highway 41, hand “Selects” every vehicle. We specialize in the highest quality automobiles available in the market. Whether you live here in the Atlanta area or anywhere around the world, we will find the exact car you are dreaming of. If you are looking for a Mercedes, BMW, Porsche, Audi, Bentley, Rolls-Royce, Ferrari or other high end model, begin your search here and we won’t disappoint.

Categories: Car Tech

Speed, Space, Luxury Bake-off

March 26, 2012 Leave a comment

If you are in the market for a large luxury sedan, you may find yourself choosing between the Lexus LS, BMW 7-series, and Mercedes S-class. Say, after test-driving all combinations of model numbers imaginable, you are unimpressed. They are all spacious, drive smoothly, look great – but something is lacking.

You are missing speed.

Enter a new class of large luxury sedans. You are now sifting through pages of the Porsche Panamera, AMG S-class, and rare BMW Alpina B7. In order to place these cars within the same price range, you may consider the Panamera Turbo and S63 AMG alongside the Alpina B7, all of which have a base MSRP in the mid-$100,000’s and can run near the $200,000 mark new off the lot.

From the Mercedes S63 AMG you get 536 horsepower and a handcrafted AMG 5.5L Biturbo V-8 Engine that takes you from 0-60 mph in 4.4 seconds.

The Porsche Panamera Turbo houses a 500 horsepower 4.8L V8 that runs from 0-60 mph in just 4.0 seconds.

The BMW Alpina B7 has an aluminum 4.4L TwinPower Turbo V8 engine pushing 500 horsepower that gets you to 60 mph in 4.5 seconds.

Judging by the performance and engine specs, it is a toss-up between these cars. Your choice may ultimately depend on aesthetics, and any additional options available in your car search.

As always, buying used will save you a considerable amount. Feel free to check out the 2011 Panamera Turbo ($157,800) and 2008 S63 AMG ($56,900) currently in our lot, and check back often for similar options!

Select Luxury Cars, located in Marietta, Ga. on Highway 41, hand “Selects” every vehicle. We specialize in the highest quality automobiles available in the market. Whether you live here in the Atlanta area or anywhere around the world, we will find the exact car you are dreaming of. If you are looking for a Mercedes, BMW, Porsche, Audi, Bentley, Rolls-Royce, Ferrari or other high end model, begin your search here and we won’t disappoint.

Bentley SUV Concept – Help make it a reality

As the ultimate symbol of luxury and excess, its about time Bentley created an SUV. For years the British automobile manufacturer has made cars catered toward those who would rather be chauffeured, although the signature design has also attracted car enthusiasts. In relatively recent years Bentley released the GT Continental Coupe for those that prefer sport with a high touch of luxury. It is surprising to have gone in this direction given the four-door behemoths Bentley has historically produced. With the EXP 9 F Concept, we may soon see a sports utility vehicle from Bentley that will overshadow the most tricked out Range Rover on the market.

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Complete with a 6.0 liter, twin-turbo W12 engine, the EXP 9 F boasts bells and whistles we could live without, but wouldn’t mind having. Some of these include a panoramic glass roof, 3D navigation, touch-screen interfaces, and a rear business seat complete with a fold-down keyboard and wifi access. There is a cooled compartment modified to fit champagne glasses and bottles, and a pullout table complete with umbrella inserts and hampers to tailgate in class.

Glancing over the photos on Bentley’s website, the interior and exterior designs speak for themselves. While we would hope a car like this is brought to production, Bentley still asks its clients to express their interest to do so. Unfortunately, while many may voice their appeal, only few may actually act upon it.

Select Luxury Cars, located in Marietta, Ga. on Highway 41, hand “Selects” every vehicle. We specialize in the highest quality automobiles available in the market. Whether you live here in the Atlanta area or anywhere around the world, we will find the exact car you are dreaming of. If you are looking for a Mercedes, BMW, Porsche, Audi, Bentley, Rolls-Royce, Ferrari or other high end model, begin your search here and we won’t disappoint.

Categories: Uncategorized

Danica Patrick Unharmed and Unperturbed after Recent Wreck

February 25, 2012 Leave a comment

Danica Patrick’s recent wreck in the Daytona 500 qualifying races highlighted two major things: (1) Danica Patrick is one tough woman, and (2) NASCAR has developed remarkable standards and safety measures to protect its drivers. If you take a look at the crash and Patrick’s reaction (ESPN), you would know what I mean.

Patrick was driving upwards 190 mph before losing control of her car and crashing into the wall. It was scary to watch, but she was able to walk away essentially unscathed and with a positive outlook. She tweeted to her fans shortly after the incident, “Well….that was a bummer. I am ok, icing my sore spots down, getting ready for the weekend! Thanks for the concern.”

Aside from recognizing Patrick’s courage and success in a male-dominated sport, it is also important to acknowledge the safety mechanisms NASCAR has put in place. The reason Patrick and other drivers are able to sustain high speed collisions in their supercars is in part due to the “soft wall” technology surrounding the tracks. These are made from crushable foam insulation placed behind rows of square steel tubes that absorb a significant amount of the energy upon impact. The racing seats form around the driver’s head and neck to prevent such injuries, and welded metal fuel tanks have been replaced by fuel cells comprised of a rubber bladder and foam to minimize the risk of combustion. Cars are also equipped with what is known as check valves, which will shut off fuel in the event that the engine separates from the car. These features, along with highly developed helmets, roll cages, and fire retardant suits, protect NASCAR drivers tremendously.

Danica Patrick's #10 GoDadddy wreck aftermath

Even with all this in place, it takes a bold individual with a great deal of nerve and skill to race at these speeds in a pack of cars fighting for position. As Danica Patrick possesses these qualities, she kept her cool enough to remember to take her hands off the steering wheel upon impact. According to experts, this prevented her from potentially breaking her wrist or hands. Such education to drivers is another element of NASCAR safety precautions.

With all this in mind and an inherently bold character, Patrick told reporters after the wreck, “Maybe the backup car will be faster.”

Select Luxury Cars, located in Marietta, Ga. on Highway 41, hand “Selects” every vehicle. We specialize in the highest quality automobiles available in the market. Whether you live here in the Atlanta area or anywhere around the world, we will find the exact car you are dreaming of. If you are looking for a Mercedes, BMW, Porsche, Audi, Bentley, Rolls-Royce, Ferrari or other high end model, begin your search here and we won’t disappoint.

Categories: Uncategorized

US Ingenuity Shines through Fisker Automotive

February 18, 2012 Leave a comment

There is no question that the everyday car will eventually transition to alternate energy sources. We have seen a number of electric vehicles released to the market, but there are few that we could see taking the place of the luxury and sport gasoline-fueled cars we know and love. That may change sooner than expected. California based Fisker Automotive was founded in 2007 with a vision of creating the first line of premium luxury hybrid vehicles.

Then the 2012 Karma was born, and was hailed as the Luxury Car of the Year by Top Gear, the world’s leading automotive magazine. What strikes many about this is the fact that Top Gear is based in Europe, and granted this award to a five-year-old American manufacturer in the face of German and Italian competition that has dominated the luxury and sports car market.

What makes the Fisker brand and its products so special? The design, inspired by the “elegant lines of windswept sand dunes,” is sure to turn heads. There are unique features such as a solar roof that captures enough energy from the sun to give the car up to an extra 200 miles of driving a year. The break pads are able to transfer kinetic energy from slowing down to the battery to allow for more efficient breaking. Finally, the dual electric motors are like nothing we have ever seen before. There is an internal combustion engine that kicks in after about 50 miles of driving, but this serves only to power the electric motors thus creating a purely electric driving experience. All this translates into a 2.0 L, 4-cylinder 240 horsepower hybrid that hits 0-60 mph in 6.3 sec topping out at 125 mph.

Fisker’s first baby isn’t perfect, though. The EPA rated the 2012 Karma to run at only 20 miles per gallon, a rate that many non-hybrid vehicles beat. But this should not discount the strides the young carmaker has made in terms of American design and engineering in creating a hybrid that can compete with gasoline-powered European autos. Creating over 700 US jobs in California and Delaware, and doing business with over 40 American suppliers including GM and Goodyear, Fisker’s ingenuity should be applauded in a time when this seemed to be lacking amidst the recent turmoil of our economy.

Inaya Sabbak

Select Luxury Cars, located in Marietta, Ga. on Highway 41, hand “Selects” every vehicle. We specialize in the highest quality automobiles available in the market. Whether you live here in the Atlanta area or anywhere around the world, we will find the exact car you are dreaming of. If you are looking for a Mercedes, BMW, Porsche, Audi, Bentley, Rolls-Royce, Ferrari or other high end model, begin your search here and we won’t disappoint.