Posted by Ben on 12 29th, 2011
While another calendar year draws to a close, it’s time to take a look back at the most remarkable events of 2011. It’s been a busy, busy 12 months in the auto industry, and it should be said that 2011 was a significant year in its own right. From Nissan launching the Leaf electric vehicle, the first fully electric one offered on a wide scale, to such terrifying event as Great East Japan Earthquake, to tragic death of Dan Wheldon, Indy Racing League IndyCar Series champion, this year was really eventful. Pampered with sensational car launches and trend setting automotive technologies, the consumers are certainly to remember this year. Now check out top 10 biggest stories of 2011 in the automotive world.
10. Europe’s largest tuning show was held among 18 models to chose Miss Tuning 2011 and the winner became 23-year-old Mandy Lange. A hot young blonde fitness instructor took home the top prize, a brand new Skoda Fabia RS.
9. From now on, year 2011 will be recognized as a milestone year for the electric car. The EVs were surely seen on the road before, but only as pilot projects. Now Nissan brings the Leaf EV as an electric vehicle for general consumption.
8. German programmers and engineers designed the interface allowing to control a car with the use of brain sensors. Now the driver can give commands to autonomous car, which is equipped with GPS antenna, video camera, radars, and laser scanners to provide the car with a full three dimensional view of its surroundings.
7. The future is almost now with the German automaker, BMW who started on developing the laser lighting system which provides more efficiency and brighter light patterns. The used diodes are expected to be much smaller than the ones in LED Headlights and the first car to be fitted with laser headlights is new BMW i8 concept.
6. The big news this year was the introduction of the Smart Forspeed, one of the latest and most interesting projects by Daimler AG, a company famous for its line of microcars. The Smart Forspeed is extremely easy to park, being low in carbon dioxide emissions and highly fuel efficient.
5. Constructed at the University of New South Wales, the solar racer Sunswift IVy broke the official Guinness World Record on January 7. Weighting only 1/10th of the weight of an average car, IVy needs just 1300 watts of solar generated power to achieve 54 miles/h.
4. Fourth on our list of major car stories of the year is the tragic death of IndyCar racer Dan Wheldon. He died in a terrible crash at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Having occured while the final race of the season, the crash involved 15 drivers.
3. New Sports Car from Toyota which literally shocked everyone is the FT-86, or the Scion FR-S as it’s recognized in America. A beautiful sports car appears to be much more affordable, being worth nothing like $375,000 LFA supercar, but just $25,000, yet having the greatest handling money can buy.
2. The Earthquake followed by Tsunami which arose in Japan is known as Great East Japan Earthquake. It occurred on the 11th of March, 2011 and damaged over 125,000 buildings including roads and railways.
1. The Fiat 500 made the return of the brand to the U.S. market, being officially on sale. Last time American citizens bought an Italian car that didn’t cost six figures was 27 years ago. With more models expected, and Alfa Romeo set to return in 2013, this automaker is here to stay.
Seems like the auto industry has made it through the worst times in the previous years, but 2011 was a break out year for most companies. Indeed, the innovations and cost effective creations introduced this year, resulted in consumers coming to the showrooms in greater numbers and sales going up.
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