Tom Murphy

Senior Editor

Tom writes about suppliers, automotive technology and other wide-ranging topics.

Articles by Tom Murphy
Toyota Preps for Fuel-Cell Launch
Toyota says its fuel-cell car carries a tank with 11 lbs. (5 kg) of compressed hydrogen that can keep the wheels spinning for 300 miles (483 km). Recharging at hydrogen stations can be completed within five minutes.
Audi at CES: ‘The Future Is Almost Here’
The German automaker uses the Consumer Electronics Show stage to discuss laser headlamps, self-driving cars, virtual cockpits and the 2015 launch of the A3 e-tron sportback plug-in hybrid.
20 Years of Favorite Engines
The Ward’s 10 Best Engines competition is in its 20th year. We mark the occasion by recalling those that are hard to forget.
2014 Ward’s 10 Best Engines Quick Hits  2
A concise pro-and-con summation of all 44 engines in the 2014 competition.
Panasonic, Abbey Road Studios Come Together
Panasonic’s automotive division previously has partnered with Fender and recording veteran Elliot Scheiner for audio systems and now teams up with the legendary London studio where the Beatles recorded hit after hit during the 1960s.
Diesel Shines Among Ward’s 10 Best Engines
Takeaways from this year’s competition: Direct injection and forced induction remain extremely popular; diesels still hold a considerable fuel-efficiency edge over gasoline engines; and there is a future for pushrods.
2014 Winner: Audi 3.0L TFSI Supercharged DOHC V-6
The 333-hp TFSI V-6 is as stealthy and lethal as an assassin’s bullet. It revs so effortlessly and sounds so enticing in the Audi S5, it’s hard to think of this engine excluded from the list.
2014 Winner: BMW 3.0L N57 Turbodiesel DOHC I-6
On a long road trip, we’re convinced 40 mpg (5.8 L/100 km) is within reach in this spacious luxury cruiser with its 8-speed automatic transmission, because diesels, unlike gasoline engines, routinely outperform their stated mileage estimates.
2014 Winner: Chrysler 3.0L EcoDiesel DOHC V-6
Chrysler’s 3.0L turbodiesel serves up the red meat truck lovers can’t resist. It has a nice grumble, without being overly loud or annoying. Finally, pickup buyers can have the fuel-efficient torque they deserve.
2014 Winner: Chrysler Group 83-kW Electric Motor
The 500e dashes from stoplights with such confidence that even hard-hearted internal-combustion devotees will find themselves recalibrating their perceptions after a test drive.
2014 Winner: General Motors 6.2L LT1 OHV DI V-8
This engine program establishes definitively that old-school cam-in-block configurations relying on pushrods can deliver stunning performance and cost advantages in a powertrain world dominated by newer overhead-cam architectures.
2014 Winner: Honda 3.5L SOHC V-6
There’s no denying the punch, power, silkiness and “I’ve got this” attitude of a world-class V-6. For some of them, the tradeoff has been middling fuel economy. Not so for the Honda Accord’s superb 3.5L.
2014 Winner: Porsche 2.7L DOHC DI H-6
Porsche deserves credit for delivering a compact naturally aspirated engine that feels and sounds so powerful. This is the type of efficient yet diabolically fun powerplant every sports car maker needs to do well as CAFE standards ramp up in the U.S.
2014 Winner: VW 1.8L TSI Turbocharged DOHC I-4
VW’s latest 4-cyl. offering sets a new refinement benchmark for small-displacement engines with forced induction. The well-equipped Jetta that delivered this engine to our offices like a holiday gift basket can be had for less than $24,000.
Bosch: Bandwidth Concerns Will Go Away 
Bosch executive Werner Struth says automakers are seeking support from suppliers in the battle for Internet bandwidth. “We will definitely find technical solutions,” he says.
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