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Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Hot Wheels Mazda RX7 and Lamborghini Sesto Elemento

Now for two completely different cars from Hot Wheels:

Rotary wonder

Mazda is well-known for making the rotary engine finally feasible for mass production in an automobile.  There were a few previous examples before the RX7, but the classic wedge-shape of this two-seater is the most memorable of them all.  From 1979 to 1985, the RX7 featured an almost triangular-shape that gave the car a more expensive look, but at a price equivalent to a midsize car at the time.

The motor was a 1,146 CC Twin-rotary Wankel motor that was small enough to sit behind the front-axle for better weight distribution, with a four-speed manual sending power to the rear wheels.  Turbo and 5-speed was offered later in this generation.  The interior featured a sporty look with the front air vents giving an aviation-like theme to the cockpit.  International markets had the option of two extra seats in the rear, but let's be honest who would fit back there?

Hot Wheels did a stunning job on their first RX7, released in 2012.  The metallic red, already a fantastic color on several 2014 Hot Wheels, looks fabulous here with only a nice side stripe that jumps half-way over the front fender.  It's really clean.  The classic wedge-shape can be seen here, exaggerated by lower ground-effects and flared fenders giving the RX7 a much more meaner look to
it.  Specific to JDM (Japanese Domestic Market), the steering wheel is placed on the right-side.

The element of lightness

As the new Gallardo replacement is unveiled, called Hurrican, one show car previewed not only some styling elements of the upcoming Hurrican but also the next stage of super-light exotics, the Sesto Elemento.

Based on the Gallardo, sharing the same 5.2, 570hp V10, 6=speed twin-clutch transmission, and AWD system, the Sesto Elemento (Italian for "Sixth Element") uses carbon fiber at every square inch of the car except the engine.  Currently carbon fiber is limited to certain sections of higher-priced vehicles, but Lamborghini uses show cars like this one to show that it is possible to mass-produce an all-carbon fiber car at a reasonable cost, to the benefit of more power and better miles per gallon,  At 2,200 Ib. curb weight, the Sesto Elemento weighs the same as a Honda Fit!

Aside from the wrong color (the correct Gray/Red will be offered later in 2014 over the current White/Green), the Sesto Elemento looks stylish.  The flat white paint adds to the effect of lightness, the green wheels look nice on this model, and the level of details are cool like the green coves at the front hood, the holes in the rear hatch instead of a glass panel (still prefer to see the engine, though), the exhaust poking out behind the rear spoiler stands, and the bare-naked rear end where the engine is visible and the transmission tail-end pokes out at the center of the bumper.  Inside, due to the lightness and the use of carbon fiber, there really is not much comfort:  No leather, navigation system, not even a dashboard!

While a full carbon fiber exotic is still a few years off, this show car proves that it is possible to add more power to a car without increasing the engine displacement.  I can imagine this Lamborghini will be a fun one on the racetrack!

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