Jeep Wrangler + tow ropes + canal = wakeboarding fun

September 18, 2012 at 12:36 pm

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These are the kinds of activities that one may conjure up and say “what if?” but few ever actually follow through on. That said, we don’t recommend trying this at home (err… your “home” canal, that is).

The video, by Devin Graham, perhaps inaccurately named “Ghetto Wakeboarding,” shows a pack of suburban kids towing a series of wakeboard-riding daredevils down a rural canal by way of Jeep Wrangler. It looks like a heck of a lot of fun.

We say that the video may be inaccurately named, because we could never envision this taking place in the ghetto. As a matter of fact, this looks like a pretty well-to-do group of teens, on a pristine late-model Jeep and filmed on a Canon 5D Mark III- not an inexpensive piece of equipment by any stretch.

Click below to check out the video, which bears a passing resemblance to a late-1990s jeans commercial.

Continue reading Jeep Wrangler + tow ropes + canal = wakeboarding fun

Jeep Wrangler + tow ropes + canal = wakeboarding fun originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 17 Sep 2012 20:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Dodge debuts second ‘How to build a…’ Dart ad

September 5, 2012 at 4:51 pm

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Dodge has released a second smash-cut “How to…” ad for the new Dart. Just like the last one, its full of a whole lot of stuff coming at you at once.

Dodge would like you to think that its R&D department constructed a time machine, and brought a man back from the future to construct the thin film transistor (TFT) display that can be ordered to replace traditional analog gauges on the Dart, as well as the massive-for-a-small-car 8.4-inch Uconnect touch screen display. Apparently after using Minority Report-style technology, he creates these two devices, is sent back to the future, and the time machine is destroyed. How did the spy photographers not catch this?

OK, but seriously, Dodge is making the point that the TFT screen and Uconnect 8.4 are seriously high tech and especially rare in a compact car. Oh yeah, and there’s more Tom Brady.

Check out the video and accompanying press release below. This ad will air during a commercial break tonight on a special Wednesday edition of Sunday Night Football (that last bit only makes sense if you watch football regularly.)

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Dodge debuts second ‘How to build a…’ Dart ad originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 05 Sep 2012 10:11:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Seinfeld’s CiCGC pairs Alec Baldwin with 1970 Mercedes-Benz SL

August 22, 2012 at 6:25 am

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Alec Baldwin (left) and Jerry Seinfeld (right) in Mercedes-Benz 280SL

For both comedy and car fans, Jerry Seinfeld and his “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee” web series has been a car-filled, caffeine-fueled, laugh-fest. The trend continues in the two latest installments of his unusual unscripted series.

In the first video seen above, Jerry picks up actor Alec Baldwin in a Signal Red Mercedes-Benz 280SL Roadster. The two exchange anecdotes about their shared hometown of Massapequa, New York and of a Kirk Douglas-Burt Lancaster rivalry. Baldwin also considers his mortality and calls Seinfeld a “lazy, shiftless bastard.” Baldwin also decrees that he is the most articulate person in the Screen Actors Guild, and talks about the jealousy induced by watching his neighbors play on a Slip ‘n’ Slide.

Click below to see the video of the two prolific funny men talk over coffee and while tooling around in Seinfeld’s cherry SL.

Additionally, we’ve added a recent episode of the web series that you might have missed, and this time Jerry is on the West Coast at the wheel of a 1970 Dodge Challenger T/A. Powered by a 340 Six Pack, Seinfeld picks up standup comic Brian Regan.

Continue reading Seinfeld’s CiCGC pairs Alec Baldwin with 1970 Mercedes-Benz SL

Seinfeld’s CiCGC pairs Alec Baldwin with 1970 Mercedes-Benz SL originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 21 Aug 2012 16:59:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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House Dems call on Chrysler to deal with Wrangler “Death Wobble” [w/video]

August 12, 2012 at 3:14 am

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If the adjective “death” was applied to any item, incident or location that had been involved in a single fatality, then we’d all be imbibing death drinks while driving death cars on death roads from our death jobs to our death homes to be with our death spouses, death kids and death pets. Yet when it comes to the wobble that’s been reported to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration by hundreds Jeep Wrangler owners, the report of one “fatality related to the suspected condition” has earned it the moniker “Death Wobble” on the television news.

In response to the newscast in question, Congressional representatives Anna G Eshoo and Henry A. Waxman sent a lengthy list of questions to NHTSA in order to find out more about the issue and requested an investigation. NHTSA declined to investigate, saying that the issue “does not result in a loss of control.”

So now, according to a report in The Detroit News, Eshoo and Waxman have gone directly to Chrysler seeking “an outreach campaign to its customers, such as a Customer Satisfaction Campaign, to notify Jeep owners of the risk of the ‘wobble’ condition … and the possible methods for repairing and preventing the problem.” Chrysler has said that the Wrangler has an excellent safety record and reiterated its position that “most reported incidents – in all manufacturer vehicles equipped with or without a solid axle – are often linked to poorly installed or maintained after-market equipment, such as lifters, oversized tires, etc.”

No one denies that a wobbling event has occurred for some Wrangler drivers when they hit something like a pothole at speeds beyond 45 mph, and the situation could probably be addressed by something better than a corporate statement that owner modifications or carelessness have caused it. While Chrysler also states that any vehicle with a solid front axle is prone to such wobbling, Automotive News’ Larry Vellequette wrote a well reasoned piece that goes into detail about how the Wrangler has been caught in a bit of a bind: the same steering and front axle setup that make the Wrangler great for off-roading can lead to such wobbling on-road at speed, and the Wrangler’s increasing popularity with the average driver unfamiliar with those kinds of compromises has led to everyone getting the short end of the stick.

It’s unclear what will happen to resolve it, but it’s clear that something will have to happen. Scroll down for the original newscast as well as videos showing some owners experiencing the wobble in question.

Continue reading House Dems call on Chrysler to deal with Wrangler “Death Wobble” [w/video]

House Dems call on Chrysler to deal with Wrangler “Death Wobble” [w/video] originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 09 Jul 2012 09:58:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Watch a Jeep Grand Cherokee fail Sweden’s Moose Test *UPDATE

August 12, 2012 at 3:14 am

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Jeep Grand Cherokee threatens to roll over during moose test

The Jeep Grand Cherokee has proven to be a rock-solid off-road-capable SUV with a dose of civility on public roads. But while the top Jeep has a terrific reputation and a long list of accolades, at least one model apparently didn’t have the chops for the Teknikens Moose (or Elk) test over in Sweden.

The moose test is a lighting-fast emergency lane change maneuver that takes place at a relatively staid 40 miles per hour. While most vehicles clear the obstacle with little fuss, the below video shows that a Grand Cherokee Overland got up on two wheels and very nearly rolled. Teknikens V

Two guys keep rescuing a Jeep Wrangler in new Discovery show

August 10, 2012 at 5:52 pm

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For the right kind of person, this sounds like an awesome adventure with a Jeep Wrangler. For everyone else, it probably sounds like hell.

Discovery has teamed up with former British special forces soldier Gary Humphrey and self-proclaimed gearhead Gary Wu, and sent them into a remote peak in the Chilean volcanoes. Also heading into the wilderness? A used Jeep Wrangler, airlifted to another location in their general vicinity. Their job? Track down the TJ and use it to get home. What could go wrong?

The show is called “One Car Too Far,” and is a five-part series, chronicling the pair’s escape from the mountainous region of Chile. The duo encounters the full breadth of Chilean terrain, including alpine tundra, deserts, and humid subtropical regions. Oh, and they have just three days to get out and back to civilization!

The show starts August 19th, at 9PM on Discovery. Scroll down below to check out a preview of “One Car Too Far” for yourself.

Continue reading Two guys keep rescuing a Jeep Wrangler in new Discovery show

Two guys keep rescuing a Jeep Wrangler in new Discovery show originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 10 Aug 2012 09:14:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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1970 Dodge Challenger R/T Convertible ad channels Buford T. Justice

August 10, 2012 at 1:40 am

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1970 Dodge Challenger R/T commercial screencap

Sure, Jackie Gleason’s perpetually frustrated Sheriff Buford T. Justice from Smokey and the Bandit wouldn’t appear until seven years after this commercial for this 1970 Dodge Challenger R/T convertible. But the tone and tenor is spot on, with a Southern officer explaining to a fellow policeman named Buford and the town judge how he’s caught a “cute li’l gal no bigger than a minute” wheeling her “racing car” through town.

Dodge has so far resurrected the Challenger, Charger and (now SRT) Viper. If it would bring back commercials like these, we wouldn’t complain about that either. Check it today’s lesson in American history below.

Continue reading 1970 Dodge Challenger R/T Convertible ad channels Buford T. Justice

1970 Dodge Challenger R/T Convertible ad channels Buford T. Justice originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 09 Aug 2012 17:14:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Dodge pulling out of NASCAR *UPDATE

August 8, 2012 at 5:46 am

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Dodge Charger NASCAR racer - front three-quarter view

After 11 years of competing in NASCAR, Dodge is reportedly once again pulling out of the racing series. Penske Racing, the only team running under the Dodge banner in 2012, announced in March it was switching to Ford for the 2013 season. On Monday, Penske Racing said it would also switch from Dodge engines to Roush-Yates Ford engines for 2013.

In March, Dodge rolled out its Sprint Cup Charger it planned to campaign in 2013, but NASCAR.com says it did not take part in a tire test at Martinsville Speedway this week.

This is not Dodge’s first time leaving NASCAR. The company left the series in 1977 and returned in 2001. It has won 50+ races since then, and could still add to that tally before the end of the 2012 season. NASCAR.com reports that an official statement from Chrysler confirming its departure is expected later today.

*UPDATE: Chrysler has confirmed it is leaving NASCAR. Scroll down to read the official notice and watch a video of executive Ralph Gilles addressing the pullout.

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Dodge pulling out of NASCAR *UPDATE originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 07 Aug 2012 13:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Six of Top 20 Most-Watched Ads Ever on YouTube are auto-related

July 31, 2012 at 1:04 am

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The marketing-obsessed folks over at Adweek have compiled a list of the most-watched advertisements on YouTube of all time. Six of those 20 ads are automotive-related, which should come as no surprise, considering the amount of money automakers pour into car ads.

Adweek did not factor in movie trailers, or banned international ads. Both would throw the curve of top ads, and the latter would certainly include a few car commercials. Most of these videos are less than three years old, highlighting the widespread accessibility to smartphones and streaming video.

It should come as a shock to no one that Kia’s Dancing Hamsters are on the list. The breakdacing rodents have been busting moves since 2009, but it was their collaboration with LMFAO to crash a video game that got them onto this list.

Also on the list is Ken Block’s Gymkhana, which we tend to forget is a DC Shoes commercial. While Adweek views it as merely an ad for this story’s purposes, we know that Block’s automotive acrobatics are far more than a shill for shoes.

Check out the collection of videos below to see which ads made the list, and which one was the most watched.

Continue reading Six of Top 20 Most-Watched Ads Ever on YouTube are auto-related

Six of Top 20 Most-Watched Ads Ever on YouTube are auto-related originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 30 Jul 2012 20:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Plymouth XNR concept parks on the auction block [w/video]

July 28, 2012 at 10:45 pm

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Plymouth XNR

The 1960 Plymouth XNR will cross the block next month at the RM Auction in Monterey, Calif.

The one-of-a-kind sports car was penned by Chrysler design guru Virgil Exner, who always hoped Chrysler would include a roadster in its lineup. The XNR featured a powerful six-cylinder engine that pumped out 250 horses and gave the XNR a top of speed of 150 mph.

Ultimately, the project never got the green light, and the XNR was shipped back to Carrozzeria Ghia in Italy, where it was built.

From there, the car’s story gets more interesting. A series of owners bought it in the ’60s, and it wound up in the Shah of Iran’s garage. It was sold again before it disappeared. In the early 1980s, car collector Karim Edde discovered the XNR in Beirut, Lebanon, hidden away in an underground garage. He bought the car and shuffled it around safe houses as the civil war erupted around him.

Twenty years later, Edde had the XNR fully restored. Since it’s a concept, there were no spare parts and whatever could not be repaired was fabricated. RM Auctions has not suggested a price the XNR will go for, but we hope its next owner continues the car’s legacy.

You can watch Chrysler engineers test the XNR at the company’s proving grounds in the video below.

Continue reading Plymouth XNR concept parks on the auction block [w/video]

Plymouth XNR concept parks on the auction block [w/video] originally appeared on Autoblog on Sat, 28 Jul 2012 18:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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