The Ford Fusion Hydrogen 999 fuel cell

Ford has built the planet's fastest production-based fuel cell powered car.

The Ford Fusion Hydrogen 999 fuel cell machine hit 207.297mph (325.565km/h) at Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah.

Green land speed attempts aren't quite commonplace yet - 999 is the world's only race car in its class.

"What we've accomplished is nothing short of an industry first," said Ford research VP Gerhard Schmidt.

"No other automaker in the world has come close. We are excited to have accomplished something never before done. We established this project to advance fuel-cell-powered vehicles and to do what has never been done before; and we did it."


Dodge Hornet to be released

The Dodge Hornet is about to be officially a go. Dodge's Euro B-segment entrant will be produced with Chinese automaker Chery, and won't have a Chrysler-branded counterpart. The show car, from the 2006 Geneva show, had a supercharged 4-cylinder with 170 hp, and got to 60 in 6.7 seconds. Autocar believes the production version may bow as early as this September at the Frankfurt Motor Show, though we think that's a bit optimistic.

The good thing is that the Hornet's impending production is part of Chrysler's 3-year, $3-billion product renewal program, which has been "confirmed" since Cerberus bought the company. Though it will likely debut at a European auto show, we have high hopes that Chrysler will bring its Chinese-built B-car to the U.S., as well.


Rolls Royce Phantom Silver Limited Edition

Rolls-Royce has produced a limited edition, named Phantom Silver, to mark the 100 th anniversary of the Silver Ghost. The special model, of which only 25 will be made, pays homage to one of the most famous automotive names of all time.
First built in 1906, specifically to publicise the then new Rolls-Royce 40/50 h.p. six-cylinder model, the Silver Ghost established the Rolls-Royce reputation for reliability and engineering excellence. The name was coined in 1907 by Rolls-Royce Managing Director, Claude Johnson, by virtue of its silver coachwork and its 'extraordinary stealthiness'. The original Silver Ghost, registered AX-201, competed in the 1907 Scottish Reliability Trial, for which it won the gold medal in its class for hill climbing speed and reliability. The Silver Ghost went on in that year to break the world record for a non-stop motor run, covering a London to Glasgow route 27 times, with mileage totaling 14,371 miles.
More than 6,000 "Silver Ghosts" were built between 1907 and 1925, and sold in every corner of the world. The majority are still in good running order.
In tribute to the specifications of the original, the Phantom Silver is finished in a new Bespoke paint, Metallic Ghost Silver. The 21-inch wheels have chrome centres and on top of the grille sits a hallmarked solid silver Spirit of Ecstasy. Inside, Rose Leaf or Crème Light leather is accompanied by seat piping and headrests embroidered with the Rolls-Royce interlinked RR badge. Straight grained Santos Palissander wood veneer is used throughout. The same veneer is also used on a specially designed presentation box that houses the key, two solid silver key fobs and a specially commissioned solid silver Conway Stewart fountain pen.
Rolls-Royce Chairman and Chief Executive, Ian Robertson, said, "The Silver Ghost is such a significant model in the history of Rolls-Royce that we felt marking its 100 th anniversary was entirely fitting. Its extraordinary reliability, refinement, comfort and virtually silent running were as important to Rolls-Royce in 1907 as they are today."

Phantom Silver specification
• Bespoke Ghost Silver paintwork
21-inch alloy wheels chrome centre caps
Roseleaf or Crème Light leather interior trim
• Santos Palissander veneered wood
• Coolbox
• Solid silver and enamel Conway Stewart pen
• Solid silver key fob* Solid silver Spirit of Ecstasy
• Bespoke drinks holder
• Bespoke champagne flutes and tumblers detailed with silver
• White instrument dials
• Bespoke clock matched to instrument dials
Phantom Silver tread plates


Volkswagen Golf GTI W12-650

We've seen some pretty wildly modified Volkswagen GTIs in our day. From potent street weapons to track day toys, the GTI is one of the ultimate tuner cars of the last 30 years. But what happens when Volkswagen itself decides to modify a GTI? Crazy happens.

Meet the Golf GTI W12-650. That's W12-650 as in "this GTI has a 650 horsepower, biturbo, 6.0-liter, 12-cylinder engine." You might be doubtful that such a powerplant could even fit in a GTI, and you'd be reasonable to be less than confident. But as it turns out, the engineers were able to find plenty of room after they'd widened the body 160 mm and removed the rear seats. That's right, this GTI is mid-engined and rear-wheel drive. The end result is a 0-62 mph sprint in 3.7 seconds and a top speed of 202 mph.

According to Volkswagen, one of the biggest challenges was getting enough airflow to the engine, a problem solved by designing the C-pillars and rear windows to feed air to the W12. Attention was also paid to aerodynamics, with the carbon fiber roof acting as a large integrated diffuser. Virtually every other component on the car is upgraded to near-race spec as well, from suspension components to brakes. Even the wheels were specially engineered for the Golf GTI W12.

So let's recap: Volkswagen GTI; 650 horsepower; mid-mounted W12 engine; rear-wheel drive; 202 mph. When can you buy one? Well that's the catch: you can't. Volkswagen says this is a strictly a show car to show the world what the GTI is capable of.


Chrysler's old logo's back

Now that Chrysler is no longer a subsidiary of Daimler, word is that the company will revive its Pentastar logo, dropped in 1998 after the DaimlerChrysler merger - according to a recent Detroit Free Press report.

The tip-off apparently stemmed from an internal Chrysler email sent to employees by one of the automaker's executives. Said executive was present for the Monday meeting where news of Chrysler's sale to Cerberus Capital Management was given to various high-ranking execs.

The news comes not long after that of Buick updating its classic tri-shield badge to give a more contemporary appearance. Like Buick, Chrysler is likely to be introducing a touch of modern design to the iconic Pentastar, lest it be judged as dated.

So now that Chrysler is bringing back icons from its pre-Daimler heritage, how about treating the Sebring to some fake wood paneling and renaming it LeBaron? Hmmm? Hmmmmm?? Come on, it'll be fun!