September 2010 Cars & Cafe

I made my monthly sojourn to the AutoMotorPlex this weekend, in order to attend the Cars & Cafe for September. It was a great time, although it was a little chilly at 8am with fall fast approaching, but that was nothing a sweatshirt couldn’t handle. The turnout was great and I noticed many cars I had not seen before. I’ve come up with a theory after frequent attendance that about 3/4 of the cars that attend are regulars and only the remaining 1/4 are different each month. My theory was blown out of the water this month and it was a very nice treat as some serious machines I had not seen before were on display.

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New Mazda Shinari Four Door Sports Coupe Concept

The Mazda SHINARI is a pure design concept model of a four-door, four-seater sports coupe which perfectly expresses the ‘KODO – Soul of Motion’ design theme in a graceful and carefree form.

The Japanese word shinari describes the powerful yet supple appearance of great resilient force when objects of high tensile strength, such as steel or bamboo, are twisted or bent. It also refers to the appearance of a person or animal as it flexibly transforms its body to generate a fast movement. Within this movement, Mazda designers discovered the potential to realize ‘KODO – Soul of Motion’.

One glance at SHINARI stirs the emotions. Its form expresses the powerful movement of a lean body with highly developed muscles, supple but at the same time filled with tension. Mazda’s desire is to reach car lovers’ hearts and go beyond the notion of rational logic. This form purely embodies that desire.

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Mazda Rotary Fans, Get Your Popcorn

Details are leaking about the next iteration of the RX-8. Most likely, it’ll be named the RX-9 (go figure), and continue the use of the Rotary engine. The issue that plagues the Rx-8, more than anything was the lack of power, and tuning availability. The previous generation RX-7 was a great car, with a great engine sunk deep into a great chassis. The fact that the little 1.3L engines could be built, bolted and tuned to make astronomical power only added to the Rx-7 legacy.

But long gone are the turbo and twin turbo rotary engines. I miss them, and have always been a huge fan. I loved that they were different, that they were a bit emotional, and that they were indeed a bit high maintenance. You couldn’t take too many liberties when tuning the rotary engine, or it would come back and bite you, hard.

The current RX-8 is a lovely platform, save for one thing. It suffers the same plague as the Miata: They are both big fun to drive, and bigger fun to drive at the limit, when your alone… Find you self in a pack of reasonably performance oriented cars, and you’ll be left in the proverbial dust. They jsut don’t have the power to keep up. And if you’re anything like me, that will eventually wear on you a bit.

Hopefully those days will be behind us soon enough, as sources at Mazda are considering any number of forced induction concepts, among others, to boost the output of the Wankel Rotary engine. It needs all the help it can get these days. Chief among these conceptual plans is an electric turbocharger. Because it’s Mazda, you can rule out the $49.95 ads for ‘electric turbo power’ (almost as quickly as driving a Miata will pose a threat to your perceived orientation), and expect to see something unique, complex, and even reasonably functional. Tuning may still pose an issue, but Mazda is on the right path with boosting the output of the current rotary powerplant.

Random Mazda Concept:

Read a bit here: WCF covers Autocar Mazda Info

World Class Car Pack for Forza Motorsport 3 Xbox

Forza 3
Forza 3 is reporting on a new car pack available today on Xbox LIVE Marketplace. It features some cars that I think Missed Shift readers would like to be able to play:

Forza Motorsport 3 unites the racing game genre, making it possible for everyone to experience the thrill of the world’s most exotic and exquisite cars. Live the most realistic racing experience ever as you take the wheel of more than 400 of the most-beloved cars on over 100 renowned real-world tracks and exotic road courses from around the globe. With breathtaking high-definition graphics and the most advanced vehicle performance modeling in a video game, Forza Motorsport 3 includes a host of driving assists and adjustable skill levels to make the game a gripping pick-up-and-play experience for audiences of all ages and skill levels.

Your escape into the world of car culture in Forza Motorsport 3 doesn’t stop at the track. Turn 10 is a proven leader in user-generated content creation in games. Forza Motorsport 3 further fuels the imaginations of its already thriving community of painters, tuners and photographers with improved customization tools and brand-new ways to share creations with the world via Xbox Live. Xbox Live makes your journey into the Forza Motorsport community and the world of user-generated content easy and fun.

The Forza Motorsport 3 World Class Car Pack, available for download starting today on Xbox LIVE Marketplace, features some of the most stunning 2010 and 2011 production and performance models in the world. Available for 400 Microsoft Points, the pack offers some of the hottest new cars from leading manufacturers like McLaren, Acura, Mercedes, Cadillac, Fiat, Mitsubishi, and more.

This month’s car pack puts you behind the wheel of some of the world’s newest and most sought after vehicles. From the elite McLaren MP4-12C supercar and the luxurious power of the 2010 Mercedes-Benz CL 65 AMG, to the tuner-friendly 2010 Acura TSX V6 and the agile 2011 Citroën DS3, the World Class Car Pack will ensure your Forza Motorsport 3 garage is fully stocked and ready to take the competition by storm during the summer racing season.

The World Class Car Pack features 10 new cars that are ready to hit the track or tuning garage:

  • 2011 McLaren MP4-12C
  • 2010 Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG
  • 2010 Mercedes-Benz CL 65 AMG
  • 2011 Cadillac CTS-V Coupe
  • 2010 Fiat Punto Evo SPORT
  • 2010 Acura TSX V6
  • 2010 Kia Forte Koup SX
  • 2011 Mazda 2
  • 2011 Citroën DS3
  • 2010 Mitsubishi Colt Ralliart

After launching the iconic McLaren F1 in the early 1990s, the 2011 McLaren MP4-12C is the culmination of over a decade of Formula 1 and street car development. Built upon a super light Carbon MonoCell structure with a mid-mounted twin-turbocharged 600hp V8 engine, this latest supercar from McLaren is a must-drive in Forza Motorsport 3. Sample the World Class Car Pack now and download a free 2010 Mitsubishi Colt Ralliart, the hot hatch tuned by the legendary Mitsubishi Motorsports division.