Tom Murphy

Tom
Murphy
Senior Editor,
WardsAuto

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

Articles
2017 Wards 10 Best Engines Winners
WardsAuto editors evaluated the 40 vehicles in October and November, driving to and from home, work, school, the hardware store and on weekend roadtrips. There is no instrumented testing. Vehicles must have a base price no higher than $62,000 to be eligible.
2017 Wards 10 Best Engines: Falling in Love With 6-Cyl. Turbos 2
BMW and Ford each have two stout turbo-6s in the hunt this year, while Infiniti has one. All five are smooth, extremely refined, reasonably fuel-efficient and dishing up loads of horsepower and torque.
Turbos, HEVs Vie for Wards 10 Best Engines Honors
Divergent powertrain strategies are evident as high-output turbocharged engines and fuel-sipping hybrids and plug-ins dominate the field of 40 powertrains under review for the 2017 competition.
2017 Wards 10 Best Engines Nominees
The 2017 Wards 10 Best Engines competition features 40 powertrains, including 25 4-cyl. engines, 12 6-cyl. engines, 23 turbos, three diesels and 11 hybrids or plug-ins. Winners will be announced Dec. 12.
BorgWarner Boosts Turbo Activity
Soon in Europe, BorgWarner will launch its eBooster electrically driven compressor, designed to augment a traditional turbocharger and eliminate the pause that has hindered turbochargers as they spool up with exhaust gas.
Auto Industry Leans Toward Clinton for President
“If we have to start worrying about whether we are producing in Mexico, or trade agreements, that will add a whole other level of risk and uncertainty into this industry that frankly, as you’ve seen, we really don’t need,” analyst Michael Robinet says.
A3, S3 Keep Audi Out in Front
In the rolling hills near Durham, NC, the S3 is perfectly at home carving up the open back roads, staying well planted along the way and exhibiting a reasonably sporty exhaust note. Audi is determined to protect its sizable lead among compact luxury cars.
’17 Audi S3 2.0T Quattro
The first-generation A3/S3 sedans have been available in the U.S. since 2014 – alongside the A3 convertible – and now they’re being refreshed to keep the momentum going.
Nissan Wants to Leave Dysfunction Junction
A top engineer within Nissan North America wants to help mend a rift with suppliers from the product-development side of the relationship. He suggests a 2-phase solution that includes “pre-sourcing” to start the collaboration further upstream.
Chevy Makes Trax More Upscale
Previously, the midgrade LT trim level was the most popular with Trax buyers, but GM executives expect the mix to richen due to the addition of a number of active safety features on the new Premier trim. Overall, the interior is much improved.
Lear Innovation Center Targets More than Automotive
Some 25 full-time Lear designers and engineers are moving into the Innovation Center to collaborate with students from the nearby College for Creative Studies and Wayne State University School of Engineering.
Lear Innovation Center in Detroit
Eventually, as many as 125 Lear employees will occupy the new Lear Innovation Center in downtown Detroit, as well as 10 students each from College for Creative Studies and Wayne State University School of Engineering.
Porsche’s Reality: More Speed, Fewer Pistons 7
The new 2.0L and 2.5L engines represent the first time Porsche, which has a rich legacy of horizontally opposed piston engines, has developed one that combines turbocharging and only four cylinders.
2016 Wards 10 Best UX Quick Hits
A summation of all 29 vehicles evaluated as part of the inaugural Wards 10 Best User Experiences competition. Many of these comments are taken directly from score sheets submitted by WardsAuto editors. Prices listed are sticker, as tested.
Gorilla Glass and Airstream’s Love for Aluminum
A panel session focused on materials at the WardsAuto User Experience Conference includes an Ohio State researcher testing fabrics embedded with sensors capable of reading a person’s vital signs and adjusting seatbelt tension automatically.
Insights

Dec 6, 2016
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WardsAuto

2017 Wards 10 Best Engines: Falling in Love With 6-Cyl. Turbos 2

BMW and Ford each have two stout turbo-6s in the hunt this year, while Infiniti has one. All five are smooth, extremely refined, reasonably fuel-efficient and dishing up loads of horsepower and torque....More

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