Tag Archives: steering

Review: A week in an Audi R8 Spyder, an everyday supercar

It’s the sounds. The wisps and growls and gargles. Hit the red Start Engine button on the steering wheel and the world wakes up to the sounds of rumbling V10. The Audi R8 Spyder is a marvelous cup of coffee and a great way to start the day. What’s more, after a week as treating this red R8 as my daily driver, I can plainly state the supercar is surprisingly easy to live with as long as some concessions are made. Sometimes, when slogging through a daily routine, it’s easy to forget you’re driving a mid-engine supercar. And then you put your foot down and the sun explodes. Review Spring arrived in Michigan just in time for some cruising with the Audi R8 Spyder. The snow is gone and the trees are budding. The sun is bright and warm and perfect for a bit of driving with the top down on this mid-engine machine. This R8 packs a 10 cylinder engine paired to a fantastic 7 speed, dual-clutch automatic transmission that converts the engine’s raw power into speed. It’s all-wheel drive and capable of hitting 60 mph in a few ticks over three seconds. And the top folds down, too. To say the previous and then state the R8 Spyder is comfortable is to say the car is special

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Tesla makes Autopilot easier to use in the Model 3

The Model 3 now has a new way to control Autopilot. The company recently sent out an update that moved the controls from the center infotainment stack to the steering wheeling. Previously, drivers had to use the large screen to change Autopilot’s speed and cruise distance and in doing so, required drivers to take their eyes off the road to change these options. The Model 3 is an exercise in minimalism, and to that end, the company is seemingly still working out the best interface. To that end, the controls on the Model 3’s steering wheel were purposely not labeled or dedicated to a specific function and instead change depending on the car’s role. Thanks to the 2018.12 update, the right-hand scroll wheel controls the speed of the vehicle while the buttons flanking that wheel changes the follow distance. The new controls do not replace the existing controls but rather supplement them. During our review of the Model 3 , we noted the sparse cockpit design and found it good and bad. On the one hand, it’s terrific to have an unobstructed view of the road – it’s as pure as driving experience as rolling down the track in the soapbox derby car of your youth, and it leaves you feeling connected to the road itself. But yet the car feels too reliant on the center touchscreen, which often requires drivers to look away from the road for simple commands. Tesla is operating under increasing scrutiny following a fatal accident that involved Autopilot. Updates like this show the company is at least listening to owners and updating its vehicles in kind.

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