In its 30-year legacy of participation in the Tecate SCORE Baja 1000 off-road race, BFGoodrich tires has notched its share of wins. But it wasn't until this last November that it locked in its most important victory to date. In an awesome back-to-back win, the BFG-tire-equipped team of Troy Herbst and Larry Roeseler secured BFG's 20th consecutive four-wheel victory in the legendary race. The team claimed the win in 15 hours, 6 minutes, and 19 seconds, traveling at an average speed of 46.92 miles per hour. The Mike-Smith-built Ford "Truggy" Trophy Truck was equipped with BFGoodrich Baja T/AKR tires, which are purpose-built racing versions of the popular BFG Baja T/A tire line. BFGoodrich Tires provides extensive pit and communications support to BFG-tire-equipped teams through its fleet of off-road support vehicles, and employs more than 125 off-road enthusiasts/volunteers who donate their time to help secure its race victories. BFGoodrich Tires' brand director, Owen Schiano, states, "Winning a legendary sporting event 20 consecutive times is no small triumph. This year's incredible victory at the Tecate SCORE Baja 1000 confirms BFGoodrich Tires' commitment to, and support of, off-road racing. The 20th win is a testament to the great drivers, partners, and the entire BFGoodrich team."
2007 Jeep Compass Tackles New Territory
The all-new '07 Jeep Compass offers features never-before available in Jeep vehicles. It is the Jeep brand's first front-wheel-drive-based product with a fully independent suspension and features several modern design twists that distinguish it from traditionally styled Jeeps. The Compass is based on the Jeep Compass concept first introduced at the 2005 International Motor Show (IAA) in Frankfurt, Germany, and combines the packaging and functionality of a sport utility vehicle with the performance, handling, fuel economy, and price of a compact car or small pickup.
Both Compass and Compass Limited models will be available with either front-wheel or four-wheel-drive capability, and the vehicle will compete in the rapidly expanding compact SUV segment, which is poised to nearly double in volume by 2010. The Compass models will feature a 172hp, 2.4L World Engine with dual variable valve timing (VVT) on both intake and exhaust camshafts and will use a standard five-speed manual transaxle and an available continuously variable transaxle (CVT2).
Optional features available on this vehicle are seemingly endless and include the likes of Sirius Satellite Radio and a nine-speaker Boston Acoustic sound system that features articulating speakers in the tailgate that swing down from the trim panel and face rearward for tailgating or camping. New safety features are also abundant on this vehicle.
Though we can't deny that the Compass certainly appears to be a useful and practical vehicle, it's still not necessarily what traditional Jeepheads like ourselves would consider a capable 4x4. It does have its place in the market, however, so you can't knock Jeep for staying ahead of the game. We'll likely have more coverage on this vehicle in the future, but don't expect lots of tech or trail rides, as the Compass appears to enjoy its on-road personality a bit more than its four-wheel-drive capability. To get a better look at the Jeep Compass, check your local ski resort or college campus. Or just hit up www.jeep.com.
Hummer Delivers To Red Cross
In a move to make it easier for Red Cross volunteers to complete their humanitarian efforts, Hummer, the GM Foundation, and Hummer's dealer network are donating four '06 H3 vehicles to American Red Cross chapters in areas devastated by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, including New Orleans and Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Biloxi, Mississippi; and Houston. The vehicles are part of a newly established partnership between the American Red Cross, Hummer, and the GM Foundation, and are part of a committed, 72-vehicle fleet that will include a combination of H1, H2, and H3 models. Additionally, the GM Foundation will contribute $100,000 annually for six years to strengthen communities' ability to prepare and respond to emergencies. Each donated H2 and H3 will be equipped with complimentary OnStar services, including hands-free calling minutes and OnStar's "Directions and Connections" plan. Joe Becker, senior vice president of Preparedness and Response, American Red Cross, stated, "The Red Cross responds to more than 70,000 disasters each year, whether it is a hurricane or a single family fire in your neighborhood. By helping the American Red Cross, Hummer and the GM Foundation are helping America."