No. 1010
August 21, 2019

About The UjianNasional@PeterMDeLorenzo Author, commentator, influencer. "The Consigliere." Editor-in-Chief of

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On The Surface


AUGUST 7, 2019

arrowdown.gif  Jose Munoz. Editor-In-Chief's Note: According to insiders with direct knowledge of the situation, Jose Munoz is desperately trying to deploy revisionist history in order to salvage his reputation at Hyundai, even though he hasn't been there all that long. And given Hyundai's propensity to jettison managers at the drop of a hat, Munoz has good reason to worry. So, Munoz is apparently going out of his way to deny to everyone that he had anything to do with the "rumors" of his bad behavior at Nissan over the previous several years. How is Munoz attacking those rumors? He is employing the time-honored "It Wasn't Me" defense. As in, what about the fact that you generated intense dealer hostility toward you and Nissan? "It wasn't me." What about the fact that dealers consistently said that you jammed inventory down their throats, causing them serious distress? "It wasn't me." What about the documented fact that you jacked-up incentives to the point that it turned Nissan into a bottom-feeder brand? "It wasn't me." And what about those big fleet numbers that Nissan consistently survived on to make its sales targets? Didn't you realize that the entire industry knew what you were up to with that tactic? "It wasn't me." Unfortunately for Mr. Munoz, the "It Wasn't Me" defense isn't going to work. Munoz has been exposed for who and what he is: a carpetbagging mercenary who leaves bitter feelings, bad business practices and woefully piss-poor decisions in his wake. And so it goes. -PMD


Billed as "the most powerful street-legal Ford ever built," the all-new Mustang Shelby GT500 "harnesses world-class muscle and powertrain technologies to attain supercar levels of performance," according to Ford PR minions. The 760HP 5.2-liter V8 with 625 ft.-lb. of torque is "the most power- and torque-dense supercharged V8 in the world," according to the manufacturer. And all that power and torque is channeled through a Tremec® TR-9070 DCT 7-speed dual-clutch transmission. How fast is it? The Shelby GT500 delivers a 0-100-0 performance in 10.6 seconds. The 16.5-inch front brake rotors help achieve that number; and the (available) carbon fiber wheels and Ford Performance-spec Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tire help too. Advanced control systems optimize the capabilities of the chassis and powertrain to create five distinct drive modes – or personalities – to get the maximum performance from every aspect of the Shelby GT500 performance hardware. “The range of brute-force drag acceleration, seamless road shifts and amazingly smooth shifts on the track further highlights how the soul of the Shelby GT500 is elevated in our most advanced Mustang ever,” said Ed Krenz, Ford Performance chief program engineer. “Effortlessly handling the 760 horsepower is our segment-first Tremec dual-clutch transmission, with an advanced control system that enhances GT500’s five drive modes to deliver a driving experience once reserved only for exotic supercars.”

(Volkswagen images)
Volkswagen has redesigned the Passat for the 2020 model year with
 more of a coupe-like profile, a more dominant grille and more distinctive lines overall. Beside the exterior changes, the car upgrades the 2.0-liter turbocharged and direct-injected TSI engine with a new torque converter and new software, boosting output to 207 pound-feet of torque. Other Passat upgrades include an infotainment system with a new glass-covered touchscreen. The Passat will be offered in four trim levels: S, SE, R-Line, and SEL. Volkswagen is upgrading its 2020 lineup across the board with most models being equipped with the next-generation Car-Net telematics system and standard in-car Wi-Fi capability when you subscribe to a data plan. The Jetta, Jetta GLI, and Tiguan also bring new technology content with available wireless charging. The 2020 Volkswagen models will feature standard driver-assistance features, including Forward Collision Warning and Autonomous Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Monitoring (Front Assist), Blind Spot Monitor, and Rear Traffic Alert. In addition, several models simplify their trim structures to favor value-laden models.

(Mercedes-Benz images)
The Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance (August 15-18, 2019) marks a highlight in the "125 Years of Motorsport" anniversary milestone for Mercedes-Benz. A reconstructed Mercedes-Benz SSKL streamlined racing car from 1932 will be driven on the road for the first time at 
the Pebble Beach Tour d'Elegance on August 15. Mercedes-Benz Classic has spared no expense in having the vehicle reconstructed in celebration of the "125 Years of Motorsport" anniversary. 
The SSKL, of which only four were built in 1931, was a pure competition vehicle and marked the crowning achievement of the Mercedes-Benz S series (W 06) with types S, SS and SSK. Aerodynamics specialist Baron Reinhard von Koenig-Fachsenfeld designed a streamlined body for the SSKL, which was driven by Mercedes-Benz factory racing driver Manfred von Brauchitsch. The body was comprised of aluminum by Vetter in Cannstatt and mounted on von Brauchitsch's car. At the Avus race in May 1932, the streamlined Avus racing car had 25 percent less drag than an SSKL with the classic body, giving it an increased top speed that was 12 mph higher. Manfred von Brauchitsch won the race in the futuristic looking car ahead of the previous year's winner, Rudolf Caracciola.
Technical details of the Mercedes-Benz SSKL streamlined racing car: In-line 6-cylinder, supercharged, 7,065 cc engine with 300HP. Top speed? 146 mph.


AE Song Lyrics of the Week:

When the men on the chessboard
Get up and tell you where to go
And you've just had some kind of mushroom
And your mind is moving low
Go ask Alice
I think she'll know

When logic and proportion
Have fallen slowly dead
And the White Knight is talking backwards
And the Red Queen's off with her head
Remember what the dormouse said
"Feed your head, feed your head" 

"White Rabbit" by Jefferson Airplane from the album "Surrealistic Pillow

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