Posts tagged with "Anthony Sovinsky"

Redeye, hellcat, dodge, Vaughn Lowery, 360 MAGAZINE, challenger

Plum Crazy: Hellcat Redeye Widebody

By Michael Moadeb, Anthony Sovinsky× Vaughn Lowery

If power is what you crave, look no farther than the 2019 Dodge Challenger Hellcat Redeye Widebody. This beaut of a car is the same as the notorious Dodge Challenger Hellcat but with impressive additions. Its key competitors are the Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 and the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1. Dodge definitely brought out the mad scientists to execute what they do best, create a monster. They collaborated with SRT to create this amazing creature of an automobile that has a Hellcat stamp of approval with a demon-like red eye.

The 2019 Dodge Challenger Hellcat Redeye Widebody is up 90 horsepower and 57 lb-ft torque from the original 707 Hellcat putting it at 797 horsepower and 707 lb-ft torque, just 11 bucks shy of the Demon. The first thing you will note is not the look, but you will hear the acoustics of the violin like supercharger make music as it has a 6.2-liter supercharged V8; It really claws the road! The Redeye Widebody is only available in a 7-speed automatic with paddle shifters. Even with traction on, the car is able to do full burnouts and donuts (recommend closed professional circuit); imagine what could be done if you get the traction control off. It’s astonishing this machine is even street legal!

The Redeye Widebody are equipped with ExtremeContact Sports tires that have SportPlus Technology, Chambered Block Edges, Solid Shoulder Macro Blocks, and more. All of these stats will make you realize why this car is more track-focused than the original Hellcat or the Demon. Thither is a cool perk called the “Afterchiller” so that when you shut down the car, it will take the A/C and run it continuously while the car is off to cool it down.

The automobile is a dark purple color called “Plum Crazy” which is a traditional Mopar color making it both beautiful and terrifying. The hood is different from previous Hellcat designs as it is a reversion to older Mopar styled muscle cars. There is an option to black out the hood for an extra $15,000 which throws the car an eye-widening color contrast. It looks pretty pricey, although it does add functionality and aggressiveness. Nevertheless, the headlights are the same as the original Hellcat, which, don’t get me wrong, isn’t an issue; why change something that is perfect?

The interior of the car is considerably thought out with high tech and considerable from the large and soft race-inspired front seats in the spacious trunk space, this car has got everything. To make the car even cooler the seats have SRT and the Hellcat badge stitched into them although no red eyes here. Additionally, the infotainment system is similar to older Hellcat models with Apple CarPlay, navigation, drive ways, detailed performance tuning, a rattling subwoofer mounted in the trunk, 18” speaker premium audio system and more.

Being one of the best muscle cars, performance-wise, on the market, the 2019 Dodge Challenger Hellcat Redeye Widebody is a genuinely good bang for your buck for $58,995 for the base model and $88,855 for all the sweet add-ons.

Pre-order.

Print-on-demand, printful, 360 MAGAZINE, morse Asturias , Vaughn Lowery

Printful

When Printful launched its print-on-demand/drop-shipping business in 2013, most competitors were traditional bulk-printing companies that weren’t built for one-off fulfillment of t-shirts and other products. Today, thanks to the e-commerce explosion and a savvy technology-focused business strategy, Printful is the largest company of its kind with three fulfillment centers in the U.S. and headquarters in Riga, Latvia and Charlotte, NC, a fourth that recently opened in Mexico, 500 employees, dozens of product options, and 800,000+ customers around the globe from artists and cause marketers to Twitter-preneurs like WeRateDogs that use merchandise to monetize their ventures.  

 

  • The company was founded by two young Latvians who couldn’t find an acceptable print-on-demand drop-shipping partner for a business they ran selling posters, clothing and other items with motivational quotes for entrepreneurs. 
  • It has doubled revenues every year since inception, fulfilled more than 10 million orders generating over $540 million for customers, and is still self-funded.
  • Features like 14 integrated e-commerce platforms (more than any competitor), API connectivity, and a mockup generator that creates store-ready product images help fuel business.
  • One-third of customers surveyed say their e-commerce storefront is a full-time gig, and three-quarters of the rest say they’re aiming to get there. 

 

Print-on-demand, printful, 360 MAGAZINE Print-on-demand, printful, 360 MAGAZINE, Anthony Sovinsky

Print-on-demand, printful, 360 MAGAZINEPrint-on-demand, printful, 360 MAGAZINE, lexus, f sport

Cadillac, xt4, Vaughn Lowery

Cadillac XT4 AWD Sport 

By Camila Isopo × Vaughn Lowery × Anthony Sovinsky × Shelby Barbour

”Every now and then an automobile manufacturer shocks us with a treasure. Something that snatches the air right out of our lungs. This time around Cadillac breathes life into its newest family member and all she does is turn heads and causes jaws to drop.” -Vaughn Lowery

If you’re in the market for a new vehicle, maybe you should consider the 2019 Cadillac XT4 Crossover for one of your very own urban excursions. We decided to venture downtown LA to Chinatown in our test model. Just like this vehicle, there’s an unprecedented reaction to Howlin’ Rays (Tennessee style hot chicken) as it’s one of the first establishments of its kind within the metropolitan area.

Launched in 2018, it’s their smallest crossover and a hopeful competitor in its segment. It sustains its own against the Volvo XC40, Audi Q3, and Mercedes-Benz GLA.

Design: The aim of this model is v-shape inspired by crisp lines, sweeping arcs, and high-end appointments. Factory tinted windows allow for added privacy and UV protection against the harsh LA sun rays. But you also get a 360 view under the car, insignia displayed on the front, and a backup camera to view more of what’s behind you. Above you, is a dual panel retractable Sunroof/Moonroof, which allows more light to come in, making the vehicle feel roomier. Compared to its predecessor, the 2018 XT4, this new variation has more room for you and four other people.

Technology: Loaded with a vast amount of features which are comparable with many luxury manufacturers: Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Satellite radio, WiFi hotspot, Bluetooth capability, rotary dials, and 8″ infotainment touchscreen. The 8-way driver and 6-way passenger seat controls made perfect sense after we shoved our faces and felt our sides begin to split. After all, who needs pants when you have an XT4?! Thanks to their elegant Bose audio system, with 13 speakers and tweeters, we were able to bounce some of the calories off from those extremely spicy french fries from Howlin’ Rays that brought us to tears. My dear Lord!

Performance: Just as significant as the aesthetic and feel of the car is its agility. Its 2.0L 4-cylinder engines are peppy, to say the least, cranking 237hp with 258 pound-ft of torque. Clocking in at an EPA-estimated 29 mpg on highways, this model is a front wheel drive with an all-wheel-drive option. This is also an advantage over the previous year’s XT4 model which weighed 15lbs more. Moreover, on that point are also selectable driving modes with paddle shifters. This new model possesses 4-wheel independent suspension easily, offering a high-quality smooth ride which grips most terrains with ease. On an urban excursion to Chinatown in downtown Los Angeles, we accidentally climbed up onto the sidewalk rushing to pick up our mouthwatering Howlin Rays Nashville style chicken. We weren’t only stunned by the 2 hr wait in a block-long line, but the fact that we were perched off road. This vehicle may just be Pismo Beach worthy.

Safety: Now, of course, the honorable people at Cadillac care about your safety. Thus, this model comes well-equipped with airbags: front, knee, and seat side impact for the driver and their co-pilot (the front seat passenger). You also incur a head curtain for all outboard seating positions. In addition, this car has multiple alerts. Whether it’s for lane changing, the side blind zone, or rear cross traffic. This comes in handy to avoid dings and scratches to its beautiful 18″ 10-spoke alloy wheels. Overall, the braking was decent, but not as sharp as other competing models at this price point.

Other specs: Fuel tank capacity for the 2019 XT4 sits at 15.9 gals. This car’s carbon emission is at 6.8 gals per year at 15,000 miles per year. It too has an air filtration system in the cabin and a powered universal tablet holder.

In short, the 2019 Cadillac XT4 AWD Sport is a match made in heaven for an emerging influencer, a youthful mid-level executive and/or an adventurous individual on the prowl for some of the best eats in a major metropolis area. Of course with a few friends in tow. The model we tested was $55,735 and it was worth every cent.

Pre-order here.

HELLCAT REDEYE

By Anthony Sovinsky × Vaughn Lowery

The 2019 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat Redeye is powerful in every sense of the word. Its first introduction in 2015 known simply as ‘The Hellcat’ instantly gained notoriety amongst car enthusiasts as being the most powerful muscle in the world. Magnificently and aggressively styled it came off the lot ready to rock with 707hp and 650 lb-ft torque powered by a 6.2L supercharged V8 that roared like the king of the jungle. Having that many pony’s is an acquired taste. Even with the base model challengers being as popular as they are, seeing a Hellcat on the road is camera worthy.

Then Dodge introduced the Challenger SRT Demon in 2018 that produced a whomping 840hp while somehow still being street legal. However, the ‘Demon’ was a limited release with just 3300 units in the US and currently all accounted for. Good luck seeing this monstrosity on the road.

Now comes the 2019 Dodge Challenger Redeye. It’s a Hellcat that has been possessed by the Demon resulting in its name. It inherited many components from the Demon’s build; most notably, a variety of drivetrain components that help it withstand its power output. With the only difference being less airflow, it’s able to crank out 797hp and 707 lb-ft of torque. Distinguishing the Redeye is it’s fully functional dual snorkel hood, widebody kit, red paint job and air inlets on both headlights. Its firm stance is made complete by 305’s on all four corners. This also allows more ground contact for the vehicle to transfer its power into forward motion.

The interior features two race inspired bucket seats up front with the ‘Hellcat’ badge stitched into the back rest. This provides added curb appeal as the logos can be seen through the windshield by pedestrians. In addition, the backseats have been deleted for further weight savings; most of the weight savings coming from not being able to have back seat passengers.

Furthermore, the infotainment system is similar to models prior. Capabilities include apple car play, navigation, drive modes and performance tuning to name a few.

The Hellcat Redeye is truly a sight to see while delivering a great value per dollar for horsepower. Base price tagged at $72,745 while fully loaded can hike it in to the $80,000 range.

360 MAGAZINE,  hellcat

360 MAGAZINE,  hellcat

Cadillac CTS-V

By Vaughn Lowery x Reid Urban x Anthony Sovinsky

Cadillac is widely known for being America’s premier luxury vehicle. As for most luxury vehicles, it is focused on a classy, curb-appealing design with a comfort-oriented ride and top of the line technology. As a result, then appeared the 2004 debut of the Cadillac CTS-V, continuing to meet all the previous high-end expectations with some Olympic level athleticism.

The upgraded 2004 CTS-V inherited the Corvette’s 400-hp 5.7 liter V-8 engine and offered it only in a 6-speed manual, which is a unique addition to a unique consumer: the sports car enthusiast. This was a historical step for Cadillac as they now entered the luxury sport sedan realm with the likes of the BMW M5 and the Mercedes E63 AMG. What better way to make a statement than to be featured in one of the best adrenaline pumping car chase scenes of that time as seen in the 2004 movie The Matrix Reloaded.

Fast forward to its second best debut in 2009, which engraved Cadillac in the record books by setting a lap time of 7:59.32 at the Nurburgring for fastest production sedan. This was achieved with a 556hp supercharged 6.2 liter V8, enhanced handling due to the introduction of magnetic ride control, and brembo brakes on all four corners. This catapulted the CTS-V to the top of the ranks of the sport sedan class in performance,  beating the M5 and E63 AMG respectively from zero to 60 mph. 

PRESENT TIME 

The CTS-V will continue its reign in the high performance sport sedan category with the introduction of the astounding new and approved 2019 Cadillac CTS-V.

The front-end greets you with very sharp fighter-jet like lines matched with mesh grills and vents. It is clear the intent of the vehicle is to be as aerodynamic and performance-centric as possible. It features a carbon fiber splitter to redirect wind-drag to down force and keep the vehicle firmly planted for increased traction at higher speeds. The hood is also finished in carbon fiber with functional vents strategically placed to perform a variety of roles including: cooling of the high revving power plant, increased aerodynamics, and a slight weight reduction compared to its stock counterpart.

Moving to the rear of the vehicle, the side profile is reminiscent of a base model CTS until you spot the 19-inch forged premium painted alloy wheels wrapped in sticky Michelin Pilot Super Sport Summer-only low profile tires. Peering through the light weight forged alloy wheels are gargantuan racing-inspired six-piston front, four-piston rear, fixed caliper Brembo performance brakes with vented rotors that remind you to not forget the V. Moreover. The rear features a carbon fiber spoiler and rear diffuser accompanied by sport badging and quad pipes that announce top of the line engineering. The aggressiveness of the body suits the power in perfect synergism.

The various performance aesthetics are functional for two reasons: compliment the driver and compliment the engine. Let’s start with the engine. The boisterous opulent sedan is blessed to be a part of an incredible gene pool that continues to be one of the fittest on the road. Well-endowed with a supercharged 6.2L V8 producing 640 horsepower and 630 pound-feet of torque, it plans to be catapulted by this ostentatious hotrod from 0-60 in 3.7 seconds. The horses are put down to the road with an 8-speed automatic transmission available in several drive modes: from the least powerful but still faster than your Eco Mode, to the keep-both-hands-on-the-wheel Track Option. Track mode will tighten the suspension and open all of the cylinders for more power while the transmission will hold gears and have quicker shifts for increased acceleration.

Suspension has been one of the major highlights of the CTS-V since 2009 with the introduction of magnetic ride control. It’s an important feature that reads the road up to one thousand times a second, allowing for incredibly sharp responses from driver input at the wheel. Supplementing “Mag Ride” are multilink MacPherson struts with independent front-and-rear suspension connected to a light-weight stiffened chassis. Such handling technology is especially important to expand the confidence the driver has on and off-track with a vehicle exhibiting as much power, size, and precision as this one embodies.

Interior finishing further address the performance capabilities, as it is fitted with Recaro racing seats up front that are tastefully badged with the V-series logo. Designed for a glove-tight fit for both driver and passenger, the racing-inspired seats keep you firmly situated to resist lateral G forces while hauling through twist and turns through your favorite canyons. However, also comfortable enough to endure a lengthy road trip or frequenting your executive meetings at the office. Rear seats comfortably sit three full-sized adults allowing for a total of four in tow. Don’t worry! It will take more weight than a cabin full of people to slow this bad boy down. The infotainment system is equally accessible to both passenger and driver for ease of use. Simple and straight forward, controls are all touch sensitive as to make the dash sleek and non-distracting. Additionally, the souped-up caddy is laced with some cool features including automatic window shades for more privacy, a digital rear view mirror that allows for more greater vision surrounding the vehicle, blind spot indicators, and Apple Carplay that is compatible with Siri for ease of use and hands-free connectivity with your super car.

Base models for the CTS-V are priced just at $86,995, which is a great value per dollar of horsepower you receive comparatively to other vehicles in its class. Not only that but you have the option to deck it out and become a real show-stopper with carbon fiber and Recaro seat package, which will put you over the 100k mark with a price tag of $106,000. All-in-all, the 2019 Cadillac CTS-V is one of the best performance sport sedans in the world and deserves a spot in your garage.

360, 360 Magazine, Vaughn Lowery,

360, 360 Magazine, Vaughn Lowery,

Fiat, 360 MAGAZINE

FIAT TRACK DAY

By Anthony Sovinsky × Vaughn Lowery

The Fiat has a voluminous history of performance and style dating back over 50 years. This Italian gem was first introduced to North America in March 2011 and featured the Fiat 500c, 500 Abarth, 500e, 500L and the 500x. And for 2018-2019 they are reintroducing the Fiat 124 Spider for the current generation, featuring modern styling, engineering science and enhanced performance with traces of the original Italian roadster design.

The 2019 124 Spider is an Italian coupe/convertible roadster powered by a 1.4L Turbo Motor 6-speed manual/auto transmission, making it the most powerful 4-cylinder turbo in its category. Producing up to 164hp and 184 lb-ft of torque in the Abarth edition, it is uniquely responsive. Our test Abarth had added racing and performance characteristics that include upgraded aggressive racing facia, branded floor mats, Record Monza exhaust tuning kit and Recaro racing seats.

The other test vehicle was Fiat Abarth 500c – a stout, preppy looking vehicle upon first glance, really reminiscent of its predecessors that were designed to navigate the narrow roadways of Italy. But with closer inspection of the Abarth 500, you will notice subtle performance enhancements: 16-inch hyper black wheels; red brake calipers; Abarth bashing; performance spoiler; turbo boost gauge and dual bright exhaust tips. This affords it a rather large presence in a metropolis like Los Angeles, where the typically more car is better, but the fiat begs to differ.

At first glimpse, you wouldn’t think much of these vehicles from a performance standpoint. Withal, 360 Magazine was cordially invited to Willow Springs Raceway by Fiat Chrysler North America. And education was provided by Skip Barber Racing School to help us take full advantage of the performance capabilities introduced for the upcoming year.

The track day started off at the the rallycross. The rallycross is designed to highlight the braking and handling capabilities of the nimble go kart-like Fiats. With quick turns and short straight always you can feel exactly how balanced and responsive these vehicles are. With the 124’s front and rear Blistein sport suspension, mechanical limited slip differential and front strut tower bar paired with a Brembo braking system it allows the vehicle to perform as desired, a true one with the car experience.

Side by side, we were shuttled to the skid pad. Here, we were able to identify how the Fiat handles on slippery terrain in a tight circle. This course was created to heighten our connection to the throttle, steering wheel and our eyes. As we continued to increase in acceleration the Spider would start to lose grip as we tried to keep a tight radius, but thanks to accurate feedback from the steering rack, throttle and Brembo braking systems you are able to keep the vehicle in complete control.

Then it’s off to the track. This is where the real fun began. Both the 500 and 124 Spider performed astoundingly. A Dodge Hellcat was our pace car as a line of us followed in tandem around the streets of Willow Springs Raceway. It was an unbelievable experience to be able to push these vehicles to their limits, highlighting just how well these vehicles are engineered.

The 2019 Fiat 124 Spider starts standard at $24,995 or $27,795 for the Classica which adds some cosmetic upgrades and some convenience options. $29,290 for the Lusso which comes with the Abarth performance package. A big bang for the buck for a sporty iconic Italian vehicle.

The 2019 500c comes standard at $16,245 and the Abarth package coming in at $21,995. Apart from the aforementioned performance upgrades on the Abarth, it comes with a track experience! Yes, you can stretch your Fiat’s legs on the track like we did just so you can come to appreciate the unique design and performance capabilities that this vehicle was intended to express.

Watch Our Experience

Pre-order Abarth

Three Quick Exercises

By Anthony Sovinsky x Vaughn Lowery x Reid Urban

Ever feel like you don’t have time to make it to the gym or just confused on what you need to do to improve your fitness? Well then you’re in luck! Here are 3 exercises that you can do at home or at the office that will improve both your fitness in strength, mobility, and endurance.

1. Squat 

The squat is an excellent exercise to develop lower body strength and improve hip function. Tight hips occur from not using your hips through their full range of motion i.e. sitting in a chair or couch all day. This results in referred pain, most commonly in the lower back and knees. Not only will deep squatting help loosen the muscles surrounding the hips and knees while relieving knee and back pain, but it will also “wake up” the larger muscles of the lower body that have otherwise been ignored from long periods of sitting. This will cause a spike in your energy demands (metabolism) causing you to build muscle, burn more calories, and over time, burn more fat.

Here’s how :

Stand with your feet just outside shoulder-width apart. Squeeze your butt and suck your belly in with arms extended in front of your body. This is your starting position.

Lower your body down, keeping your feet flat and hands out front for balance until your hips have lowered past your knees then stand back up. Congrats! That’s a squat!

Try to aim for 25 repetitions for 4 sets and keep it under 10 minutes.

2. Lunge 

The lunge is another great exercise that addresses single leg and hip strength and stability. Lunging will help make both legs equally strong. When done correctly, it will help correct hip imbalances that result in low back pain and bad posture. This variation is a bit tougher than the squat as one leg is responsible for lifting most of your body weight back to a standing position, making the lunge a key component to your lower body strength routine. Lunging will isolate the glutes, which happen to be the powerhouse of the human body, so you can expect major muscle gain and calorie burn from this exercise.

Here’s how :

Start standing tall with both feet together. Take a large step forward as if you are trying to step over a puddle.

Once you are in a split stance, find your balance and slowly take a knee with the back leg. Focus on keeping the entire front foot in contact with ground the entire time.

Once you have taken a knee, press yourself up with the front leg and allow your back leg to meet the front one so you are back to a standing position.

Now repeat! Try this for 10-20 steps for 4 sets.

3. Wall Stretch 

This exercise is more so to address posture issues that come from long periods of computer work, cell phone usage, and driving. All these forward-reaching activities cause our shoulders to round forward, causing neck pain and adaptively tight chest muscles and weak, overstretched back muscles. The best way to combat this imbalance with no weights is to do a wall stretch and get the arms over the head more frequently.

Here’s how :

Find a wall and lean on it back first. Bring your feet out in front if you and assume a quarter squat so you can get your entire back flush with the wall.

Lift your arms up and attempt to place the back of your wrists on the wall with triceps parallel to the floor.

Reach up towards the ceiling while trying to maintain contact with the wall and your wrist the entire time.

You will notice a deep stretch across the chest and front of shoulders while getting a good “squeeze” between the shoulder blades. Overtime, this exercise will help reset proper balance between the chest, back, and shoulders.

Try this for 4 sets of 15-20 repetitions. You can pair this with the squats or lunges or both!

Go get after it! These can be done anytime and anywhere. These exercises will give you the most bang for your buck. Whether you’re trying to burn calories, relieve pain, or build strength these are absolutely key to live a healthy active life!

2019 INFINITI QX50

2019 INFINITI QX50

By Vaughn Lowery × Anthony Sovinsky

As of late, we had the opportunity to test drive a pre-production QX50 during a three-day press launch at West Hollywood’s newest boutique property, La Peer Hotel.

The days are slowly fading, at least in the automotive industry, where bigger isn’t always better. The biggest engines, the most valves and absurd fuel consumption aren’t necessarily needed to create fast responsive engines. For Earth’s sake, this is a very economical and environmentally friendly path to take. Less fuel consumption while improving power output is the wave of the future and Infiniti is one of many leading the way. The newly redesigned 2019 Infiniti QX50 stocks a VC-Turbo Engine with all-new DriverAssist technology and lightweight skeleton.

Let’s start with the heart of the vehicle -the engine. What’s important to note is how much more economical the VC-Turbo Engine is in comparison to the 2017 QX50 and its stiffest competitor, the Lexus RX. The newly designed engine is a 2.0 liter turbocharged 4-cylinder which produces an impressive 268 horsepower @ 5,600 rpm while creating an astonishing 280 lb-ft of torque @ 1,600 rpm. This means quicker acceleration and consistent pull through the entire power band. The QX50 is able to stretch a gallon of fuel up to 27 mpg city/hwy which is a 35% increase in fuel economy from the previous model, making it the most economical vehicle in its class. The Lexus RX comes in 4 mpg less while also lacking in the torque department. Infiniti for the win!

Complementing fuel efficiency is its all-new lightweight platform. The frame only weighs 923.7lbs and the weight-to-size ratio is the best in class. Designed from high tensile material it enables the car to resist flex, vibration and reduces noise pollution inside the cabin for a more luxurious ride. Now fitted with McPherson suspension, commonly used on BMW, the QX50 is ready for spirited driving. Furthermore with the increased structural integrity, the suspension appears to be more responsive, providing the driver with greater control and cornering.

When it comes to safety, there’s one thing which comes in mind – how well does it stop? Infiniti added a new braking system designed for control under most conditions. The vehicle is fitted with ventilated front brakes which are larger than the previous model, measuring in at 13 inch in diameter. Moreover, a new brake booster and tie rod system has been added to reduce the need for higher brake pedal pressure. Depending on customer preference, there are two wheel/tire and two drivetrain options available. The tires come in 19 inch wheels with 235/55R19 tires or 20 inch wheels with 255/45R20 tires – both available in run flats and reinforced rubber sidewalls to allow up to 93 miles with reduced air pressure. For the drivetrain, one can choose between the intelligent AWD or the standard FWD. Better grip, braking and handling attributes can be expected with the AWD upgrade.

The exterior stays true to Infiniti’s “Powerful Elegance” language. Several features set this model apart from its predecessors. It’s overall sculpture is influenced by aerodynamic efficiency which adds to the muscular yet sleek design of the crossover. Every curve (mostly on the hood) and shape of the QX50 is fully functional, improving its drag coefficient by 6%. The front fascia boasts its usual distinct double arched grille. Furthermore, it is equipped with the signature LED headlight design that gives an appearance of an intense stare-down. Slightly sitting higher with larger wheels, you are reminded, ‘its more than just a good look but a sporty companion.’

Ergonomics are apparent inside the cabin. Upfront are two zero-gravity NASA seats alongside of a passenger-minded asymmetrical architecture, allowing both driver and passenger to feel connected and co-operative. On the dash board sits the InTouch infotainment center featured on dual screens for ease and convenience. It allows passengers to stream media from handheld devices via Bluetooth – including music ,texts and photos (Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are not yet available). The Bose Performance Series audio system is designed specifically for the QX50’s underpinnings to produce optimal sound quality. It’s loaded with 17-speakers and delivers an unmatched audible experience. Above head is panoramic moon/sunroof which stretches from the front to back seats complete with a motorized blackout curtain. It enhances the roominess, especially for backseat passengers who wish to stargaze. Also in the rear is a sliding rear bench which alters both legroom and cargo room for whichever is needed most. The quilted seat packages offer a bespoke feel coupled with ultra suede middle console, pillars and headliner. Moreover, manually retractable rear window nets offer additional privacy as well as sun protection when paired with factory tint.

Driver connectivity is further enhanced with ProPilot – a feature which allows single lane driving assistance. This helps with driver fatique during bumper-to-bumper traffic and long drives. As the name implies, this patented technology assists the driver in identifying road hazards as well as other drivers which could potentially cause accidents. Moreover, ProPILOT also helps manage acceleration, braking and steering in single lane travel. For whatever reason, when activated it makes both the steering and brakes feel firm and tenacious. We tested it on the whiny roads of Muholland Drive; and it practically drove itself even while descending (activation normally lasts upto 20 secs or until it falls back in between the 2 lines). In addition, the newly introduced heads-up display in lower windshield allows the driver to fixate more on the road and less on the navigation. Also works well with polarized eyewear and shades.

In short, the 2019 Infiniti QX50 AWD fully loaded model prices just under $60,000 which isn’t quite so bad considering the brains of this bodacious beauty. Not to mention, the overall performance is extremely desirable and nimble at times. This is an amazing buy for a millennial executive with room for a modern family or empty nesters with a few adult children in tow.

For additional information on this vehicle and available trims visit: https://www.infinitiusa.com/crossover/2019-qx50/

2018 JEEP GRAND CHEROKEE TRACKHAWK 

The hawk is one of the most powerful birds in the sky. It dominates its territory by fiercely navigating the air, swooping in on its prey with incredible speed and accuracy. Now apply those characteristics to a vehicle and you discover something that is ferociously fast, nimble and adaptable with unprecedented performance.   


by Anthony Sovinsky × Vaughn Lowery 


The 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk is an AWD SUV equipped with the notorious Hellcat engine. A supercharged 6.2 liter V8 delivering 707hp with 645 ft-lb of torque in a 8-speed automatic with Quadra-Trac active on demand 4WD that catapults this brute from 0-60 in 3.5 seconds, howling across the quarter mile in 11 seconds and reaches a top velocity of 180 mph. There are no other SUVs in the world exhibiting this type of performance besides the Lamborghini Urus (650hp w/ 626lb-ft torque starting around $200,000). With a height of 67.9 inches, you will be staring at the roof of many vehicles which are capable of keeping up, especially if you follow Launch Control instructions – this bird soars 0 to 60 mph in 3.3 seconds. 


Weighing in at 5,636lbs, it is armed with an enlarged Brembo performance anti-lock braking system. Up front, the Trackhawk is fitted with big 15.8-inch rotors with 6-piston calipers; and in the back end, it passes 13.8-inch rotors with 4-piston calipers, making it come to a halt from 60 mph in a mere 114 feet. The bright yellow calipers nicely compliment the 20×10 inch black satin aluminum wheels ($995) encased in meaty 295/45ZR20 BSW 3 season tires ($895). Moreover, Blistein competition suspension containing active dampening keeps it firmly planted with very slight roll. Select-Track system allows the driver to elect five different modes – auto, sport, track, snow and tow (w/ 7200lb capacity).   


Many drivers in a metropolis are defensive, but some aren’t able to concentrate on what’s in our peripheral during a concrete jungle safari. Precisely for that reason, several safety features have been implemented: parallel and perpendicular park assist; LaneSense lane departure warning; full speed forward collision warning; advanced brake assist; adaptive cruise control to stop, blind spot and cross path detection; park view rear backup camera; and last but certainly not least, a valet mode that significantly reduces horsepower (to about 200 hp) and torque to make the car more manageable to the unfamiliar.   


Carrying on to the exterior, the Jeep is tastefully badged with “Trackhawk” emblems (on floor mats as well as rear back gate) and a “Supercharged” side door steel plate informing spectators of what’s under the hood. The front-end features a seven-slot grille equipped with Bi-Xenon HID headlamps. And, similar to its Challenger Hellcat sibling, it features functional air intakes which replace fog lamps to help cool the powerful engine. Continuing towards the boot, Fiat-Chrysler North America (NA) added quad exhaust tips, causing the vehicle to appear more aggressive on most angles.  


Upon entering the cabin, drivers and passengers are welcomed by Napa/Suede “Trackhawk” stamped performance seats, carbon fiber trim, blackened chrome accents and a three-spoke flat bottom steering wheel with paddle shifters. Adjacent, lies the Uconnect 4C NAV with 8.4 inch display which is compatible with both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Furthermore, the screen can access various drive modes as well as engine performance readouts for the more avid aficionado. And, if you go on to purchase the 2XV package, not only will you have access to a high performance vehicle, but a high performance audio system ($1,995). Outfitted with 19 Harman Kardon speakers alongside a subwoofer and an 825-Watt amplifier. With ample head and leg room, one can expect space for the entire modern family – driver, four passengers and a small to medium sized dog to comfortably run circles in the trunk area. Moreover, there’s adequate room for a few weekender bags to stealthily fit underneath the trunk matt right above the spare tire.  


It’s almost hard to believe that such an SUV exists at such an affordable price point: supercar power plant, all-terrain capabilities, tenacious brakes, moderately precise steering (best in track mode), enhanced suspension offers comfortable cornering and hypersensitive acceleration – no one will ever ask, “Are we there yet?” The 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk base price is close to $85,900 and the customer preferred package 2XV adds another $4,980 for a total of $90,880. In short, Fiat Chrysler NA once again delivers a huge bargain which cannot be ignored while delivering tremendous curb appeal. Hence, the Trackhawk will leave enthusiasts watering at the mouth for years to come.   


https://www.jeep.com/2018/grand-cherokee/performance.html  

2018 JAGUAR F-TYPE 400 

By Vaughn Lowery × Anthony Sovinsky

For 2018, Jaguar is introducing a genetically enhanced version of its already popular F-Type series – the 400 Sport Coupe Special Edition. At first glimpse, the vehicle immediately appears to be a part of the family, yet subtle differences cause it to break away from the battalion. 

Although the F-Type didn’t call for a redesign, they redefined excellence with a one-year-only configuration. This limited version exhibits tons of sporty appointments which hint nifty performance gains to be anticipated as well. The 400 Sport is featured in three different metallic colors: Yulong White, Indus Silver and Santorini Black. It arrives in two different drive trains – AWD and RWD. Lastly, one can select between a convertible or coupe. 

As of late, we had the joy of testing out the Indus Silver two-door AWD (allowing it to grip and corner with ease). While approaching the vehicle head-on, you are at once enthralled by its bespoke elements – stealthy accents on the grille fitted with an audacious front splitter adorning “400 Sport” in bold yellow.

While orbiting the vehicle, we gained an admiration of its contoured yet nimble stance. Some of the new additions included blade-like extended side sills and prominent front/rear splitters which shout, “I am fast as I am athletic.” It squats on 20″ Dark Satin alloy wheels that come to a stop with Super Performance 380mm front and 376mm rear brakes (currently, an upgrade featured in the 400 Sport). With a wheelbase of 103.2,” ground clearance of only 4.1″ and a length of 176.5,” you can be reassureed that this vehicle was built to track (very little drag coefficient w/ automatic retractable spoiler). 

The F-Type 400 Sport possesses the most agile V6 offered in the series, until now still doesn’t measure up to the R (V8 550hp) and SVR (V8 575hp)’s performance. It’s the difference between a Ferris wheel and a roller coaster (less scream factor). Nevertheless, this 3.0L V6 400PS supercharged engine delivers 400hp with 339lb-ft of torque alongside of an 8-speed gearbox. It’s 20hp faster than its forerunners. Most of it is felt in the top end which makes it worth acquiring. This increase in power also enhances the already invigorating exhaust that’s expelled through the trumpet-like tips. Letting off the gas at high RPMs (5000+) will make the car backfire – crackling and popping like a 4th of July fireworks show. Don’t fret, though. As prevalent in former models, Jaguar wanted to make certain you don’t upset the neighbors by adding an option to tame it with the press of a button. 

Inside the cabin, your eyes are drawn yet again to the vibrant yellow emblems, “400 Sport” tastefully planted: the steering wheel; console finisher; embroidered headrests and tread plates, reminding you of the anomaly of which you have. In addition, slimmer premium leather performance seats improve dash to backrest space, creating a racier ambiance. For the foremost time, there’s a flat-bottomed sport steering wheel accompanied by anodized aluminum paddle shifters ergonomically placed for aggressive driving. Next, you’ll discover the beautifully black-coated aluminum center dash baring a touch screen infotainment system which allows you to navigate, choose your favorite station and/or Bluetooth to your smart devices.  

The 2018 Jaguar F-type 400 Sport Coupe Special Edition is definitely something special. Aside from all the jaw-dropping signature patches, it offers exclusivity to the owner because of its minimal production, unique performance and cosmetic upgrades. This makes it a well-balanced vehicle of choice for those seeking something snazzy without the hefty price tag.  

In short, we forecast this to become the affluent millennials’ two-seater select for 2018.