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2012 Camaro ZL1: More muscle

One of the greatest automotive rivalries exists between the Chevy Camaro and Ford Mustang. Although it lay dormant when the Camaro ceased production, the 2010 model reignited the rivalry. However, when it comes to discussions of horsepower, Ford could hold the Mustang-based Shelby up as having no competition among Camaros. Until now.

The 2012 Camaro ZL1 adds a supercharger to a big V-8, the same strategy as the Shelby, to produce massive horsepower. And while the Shelby is still the power king, Chevy can boast other tech tricks that help give the Camaro ZL1 the edge at the track.

Foremost … Read more

NanoSteel to save weight, fuel in GM cars

With increasing numbers of airbags, side-impact beams, and other safety reinforcements, cars have gained weight over the last 20 years. And with that extra poundage comes decreased fuel economy. Now, as automakers search for ways to comply with new CAFE rules in the U.S. and CO2 limits in Europe, bringing automotive weight back down is one obvious target. GM is looking to a company called NanoSteel, which is developing a new steel alloy that could shave weight without compromising safety.

NanoSteel has developed new iron-based alloys through nano-structuring, and says it can have automotive-grade sheet metal products ready in … Read more

Camaro leads the way for Chevy app, nav integration

When we saw demonstrations of Chevy's MyLink system last year, it looked like the company finally had a solid competitor to Ford Sync. MyLink not only offered advanced voice command over phones and MP3 players, but also integrated smartphone apps.

However, as we saw in the 2013 Chevrolet Malibu, Chevy hadn't built a MyLink head unit that was compatible with a navigation system. The result: buyers had to choose between having advanced voice command or onboard navigation.

The 2013 Camaro seems to solve that little problem.… Read more

Apple gives developers fully baked Mountain Lion

Apple's next major release of OS X, dubbed Mountain Lion, is in its final testing stages.

Apple today gave developers the same version of the software that will be released to consumers later this month.

Mountain Lion is the followup to last year's Lion, and represents the eighth iteration of OS X. Apple first debuted the software in late-February with a preview release, and has since followed with a handful of beta versions that squashed bugs and introduced new features.

As a quick recap, Mountain Lion brings a handful of iOS features to Macs, including the notes and … Read more

Happy July 4th, American automakers

Few countries can boast as vibrant an auto industry as the United States of America. Our Henry Ford revolutionized how cars are built, while quite a few other start-ups participated in the early days of this industry. For decades, the industry was dominated by the Big 3: Ford, Chrysler, and GM. Now, of course, the story is a bit more complicated, with U.S. companies building some cars abroad and some foreign companies running plants here, employing thousands. But this selection of cars represents the most historic United States marques, and one all-American newcomer.… Read more

Facebook, GM in talks to rekindle ad relationship, report says

After a very public falling-out, Facebook and General Motors may be on the road to rekindling their advertising relationship, according to a new report.

The Wall Street Journal reported yesterday, citing sources, that GM and Facebook are in talks to determine what it would take to bring the automobile company back to the social network's advertising platform. The Journal says that Facebook will give GM better data on how the company can increase ad effectiveness.

GM made waves back in May, just ahead of Facebook's IPO, when it decided to pull its $10 million ad campaign from Facebook, … Read more

BMW and GM part ways on fuel cell research

Heightening speculation that BMW and Toyota are about to announce an expanded partnership involving fuel cell technology, the German automaker confirmed today that it is no longer talking with General Motors about a similar research arrangement, reported a Bloomberg article.

On Friday, BMW and Toyota will hold a press conference announcing the details of a closer working relationship. Last December the two companies penned an agreement that gave Toyota access to BMW's small diesel engines to sell in its European line up of vehicles, and in return, Toyota would help BMW play catch up in the hybrid market by … Read more

Apple's Eyes Free coming to Chevy Spark, Sonic

Apple announced last week at the 2012 WWDC that many automakers have signed on to integrate Apple's Siri in their vehicles, but few have said which cars or when. However, two compacts from General Motors may be among the first to include the new "Eyes Free" feature in its vehicles, reports blog GM Authority.

The Chevrolet Spark and Chevrolet Sonic will be the first GM vehicles to get this latest infotainment feature. The two vehicles are already available with MyLink, an infotainment system that integrates with the driver's smartphone. MyLink leverages the handset's Internet connection … Read more

Ford's 999cc EcoBoost engine wins top honors at Engine Awards

Click through for the full photo gallery and more details.

This year's International Engine of the Year Awards saw many repeats from 2011, but stealing the show was a new sub-1-liter engine from Ford. Using direct injection and a turbocharger, this 999cc engine manages to generate 123 horsepower, enough for most subcompact and compact cars. And in European test cycles, the engine manages well over 50 mpg.

Despite the economy of Ford's engine, the Green Engine Award went to GM for the range extended electric power train in the Chevy Volt and Opel Ampera.

Here are the various … Read more

Apple fans, don't expect a Siri button in your car anytime soon

Among the deluge of new features Apple talked up in the keynote for WWDC, integrating Siri with cars, in conjunction with automakers such as BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Audi, Honda, and GM, generated a lot of buzz. Siri has proved a popular voice command feature in the latest iOS, and so naturally users would want that functionality integrated into their cars.

But, knowing how the auto industry works, I was skeptical about a number of aspects of this announcement. I could not believe automakers would actually put dedicated buttons just for Siri in their cars. They would also not necessarily want to … Read more