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 |   |   |  December 2013 Gear
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December 2013 Gear

The latest great stuff for your driving life.

Nov 5, 2013
Powerflex bushings Photo 1/20   |   Powerflex Bushings

Powerflex bushings

Powerflex keeps adding to its comprehensive range of performance polyurethane bushings. The range now includes the E46 BMW 3 Series, (B5 and B6) Audi A4, plus the Mk1-Mk4 VW Golf. The company claims its high-durability polyurethane reduces noise and vibration, while offering longer tire life, shorter braking distances and greater responsiveness. Prices vary, but a front wishbone inner bushing for the Mk4 Golf is $65.99

Amsoil spray grease Photo 2/20   |   Amsoil Spray Grease

Amsoil Spray Grease

Amsoil’s newest lube is Spray Grease made with white lithium. It shouldn’t take too much to figure out what this is, what it does and how it’s applied – the good thing about a spray is that it can reach hitherto inaccessible places and keeps mess to a minimum. $5.80

Wilwood brake kit Photo 3/20   |   Wilwood Brake Kit

Wilwood brake kit

The 1999-2006 E46 BMW 3 Series (from 323i to 330i) can now be upgraded with a Wilwood W6A front brake kit configured for high-performance street or track use. The forged six-piston calipers bite 14" rotors bearing asymmetric groove patterns. The kit includes aluminum hats, mounting brackets, Wilwood BP-10 pads and the necessary installation hardware. It’s also compatible with OE master cylinders and ABS systems. It does, however, require the additional purchase of stainless steel braided lines. The calipers come in a black powdercoat, but can also be ordered in red. $2038.39

AWE pulley kit Photo 4/20   |   AWE Pulley Kit

AWE pulley kit

AWE Tuning describes its new pulley kit for the B8.5 Audi S4 and S5 with the S-tronic transmission as potent, but without sacrificing reliability. Included in the kit is the 3.0T pulley (electrocoated in black), belt and hardware, plus GIAC stage 2 software and a hand-held switcher. Performance gains are a claimed 31hp and 42 lb-ft. From $1749

Injen short ram intake Photo 5/20   |   Injen Short Ram Intake

Injen short ram intake

Replacing the restrictive stock intake in the BMW F30 335i, the SP1127 is made from aluminum and features a dry web nano-fiber filter. As a result, the better breathing brings a claimed 13hp and 11 lb-ft of torque, as well as an improvement in fuel efficiency. Injen also says it has a deeper induction growl. It comes in either polished or wrinkle-black finishes. $420

Forge hose kit Photo 6/20   |   Forge Hose Kit

Forge hose kit

Any Turbo version of the 997-generation Porsche 911 is the right candidate for this set of upgraded, race-quality hoses. Forge claims quick and easy installation using the included CNC-machined bayonet couplers. They’re also able to withstand higher temps and boost pressures, lasting longer than the factory items. Available colors are black, red and blue. $360

IE intake manifold Photo 7/20   |   IE Intake Manifold

IE intake manifold

Having built a great reputation in the VW/Audi community for high quality parts, this new Integrated Engineering intake manifold includes the cast aluminum manifold, air intake and software to add a claimed 48hp to the Mk5 and Mk6 VW 2.5-liter five-cylinder engine (torque doesn’t increase, but the curve remains flatter for longer). The pieces can also be bought separately and IE will flash an owner’s ECU within 24 hours of receipt. The manifold is available in a raw finish or black powdercoat. The full kit is $1499.99

Megiuars bug sponges Photo 8/20   |   Megiuars Bug Sponges

Meguiar’s Bug Sponges

Packed in individual wrappers and designed to break down bug proteins, the new sponges are kind on paintwork. Meguiar’s Bug Splatter removal sponges are pre-saturated and will work on glass, headlights, metal or fiberglass surfaces. Just wipe with one side of the sponge, wait a few moments for the formula to take effect, then wipe away with the other side. $8.99

Hydes serum rust stopper Photo 9/20   |   Hydes Serum Rust Stopper

Hyde’s Serum Rustopper

Designed to prevent rust forming on brake rotors and other braking components, the serum protects wheel coatings, lug nuts, wheels (steel, alloy, chrome or polished), anodized finishes, single-stage paints or the braking system itself, thanks to a pH-neutral formula. Spray on after cleaning and let it do its job. $12.99

CTEK battery charger Photo 10/20   |   CTEK Battery Charger

CTEK battery charger

Cars, lawnmowers, snowmobiles… anything with a 12-volt battery can now be connected to the juice with ease and safety. We’ve actually used a CTEK charger and battery tender for several years without complaint and now the new MUS 3300 charger can monitor and maintain all common types of batteries, including AGM. This device was designed to be used while the battery remains in the vehicle, its built-in short-circuit protection removing the fear of damaging sensitive auto electronics. $74.99

Stack multi function displays Photo 11/20   |   Stack Multi Function Displays

Stack multi-function displays

With new sixth-generation Datapro software, Stack’s multi-function display (MFD) systems offer 14 channels of datalogging at speeds up to 200 times per second, and with sufficient memory for a 24-hour race. It also features GPS track mapping, Excel Data Import Utility and a CAN ECU Gateway template editor – the MFD is compatible with AEM, Bosch, Motec, etc. It can also provide predictive lap times, brake bias readout and has configurable LED warning lights. And let’s not forget Stack’s renowned analog tachometer for reliable engine speed readings. Clubman-3 DVL models start at $1499

Onehundred tuls Photo 12/20   |   Onehundred Tuls

Onehundred Tuls

These wallet-friendly items (in terms of size and price) from Onehundred are made of titanium and perform various functions. The Tuls (tools) are cut and etched by laser, providing four separate options: Stan (smartphone stand and cable organizer), Lucy (metric and standard wrenches), Roul (metric and standard measurement) and Opie (bottle opener). $22 per tool

Milltek exhaust Photo 13/20   |   Milltek Exhaust

Milltek exhaust

Milltek bought an F30 BMW 3 Series in order to develop a cat-back exhaust system fashioned from 3", non-magnetic stainless steel. The pipe diameter provides a fine balance between gasflow and backpressure, essential for good throttle response. In resonated or non-resonated form (depending on the desired soundtrack), the system works on 320i and 328i models with the N20 engine and M Sport cosmetic package. Dual 3.5" tips are available in polished or black finishes. $TBA

Vaavud wind meter Photo 14/20   |   Vaavud Wind Meter

Vaavud wind meter

Although this wind tunnel-tested gadget is aimed primarily at sailors, paragliders, kite surfers and the like, it could also be remarkably handy on a track when calculating lap times and the effect headwinds or tailwinds have on speed and stability. We liked it because it’s a clever gadget that uses no electronics, but connects wirelessly to a smartphone (iOS or Android) and detects wind speeds up to about 56mph. It’s also possible to get live readings on an interactive map. $44.99

Elevate sway bar Photo 15/20   |   Elevate Sway Bar

Elevate sway bar

At 1" diameter, the anti-roll bar replaces the stock unit on Volvo’s P3 chassis, providing more than twice the rigidity of the smaller stock item. Elevate claims more neutral handling and better road holding. It retains the factory end-links and includes grease-able polyurethane bushing with zinc-plated brackets. The applicable P3 models are the 2007-on Volvo S80, 2008-on V70, 2010-on XC60 and 2011-on S60. $259

AEM infinity ECU Photo 16/20   |   AEM Infinity ECU

AEM Infinity ECU

Manufactured for US-spec BMW E46 M3 models (2001-06) with manual transmissions, the plug-n-play programmable ECU replaces the original engine management and employs the factory CAN-bus system for map switching and traction control. It will even work with the factory buttons in the steering wheel and center console to select various operation modes. The Infinity ECU controls all engine systems, including variable cam timing and drive-by-wire systems thanks to processing up to 400million instructions per second. It works with the AEM Infinity Plug & Play harness, which is purchased separately for $490. ECU from $3271

BFI shift knob Photo 17/20   |   BFI Shift Knob

BFI shift knob

Made from billet aluminum, this knob is more than just a pretty shifter. At around 8.8oz, its heft is said to allow smoother and quicker gear changes. It has a modular threaded insert design that makes it compatible with many applications, although it seems particularly suitable for VWs. $99.99

U scan sensor phone app Photo 18/20   |   U Scan Sensor Phone App

U-Scan Sensor & Phone App

Wouldn’t it be nice to understand those flashing lights on your gauge cluster? Or know what’s wrong with your car before you take it to the mechanic? Thanks to U-Scan, you can. Other benefits include an emissions to prepare you for smog testing. The U-Scan is simple to set up: First, download the U-Scan app from iTunes or the Android app stores. Then sync the Bluetooth between the phone and U-Scan reader. Plug the reader into your ODB port, turn on the engine and hit “Scan Now” on your phone. The interface is simple to navigate and you can save each scan to your “garage.” Upgrades are also available if you want more detailed readings to monitor things like engine modifications. $79.99

Autodromo gloves watch Photo 19/20   |   Autodromo Gloves Watch

Autodromo Gloves & Watch

Created by industrial designer, Bradley Price, Autodromo products hope to harness the spirit of early motoring, specifically the experience of the 1950s and ’60s. Their extensive timepiece collection includes various gauges throughout that time period. The Monoposto watch (limited to 500 pieces and sold out), for example, was inspired by introduction of the “redline.” When racers were looking for top speed, they had no mechanical sympathy, so their techs would paint a bright red line to indicate the maximum rev limit… and the “redline” was born.

The Autodromo Stringback leather gloves were designed to revive the thrill of ’50s racecar drivers before neoprene fireproof material was ever invented. Back then, drivers relied on leather and cotton, allowing the hands to breathe while offering maximum grip on the steering wheel and to hell with fire protection!

Iphone case review Photo 20/20   |   Iphone Case Review

iPhone Case Review

We’re always on the hunt for a rugged iPhone case because your device is too precious to lose in a careless accident. So we’ve collected a number of options, for various budgets, but all will help your phone survive.

A. Catalyst Survivor Waterproof
If you’re a regular beachgoer or regularly near water, this case might be perfect. Capable of withstanding depths up to 9.8ft, you can dive into the deep-end with confidence. The only drawback is the encyclopedia instruction booklet on how to properly insert your phone. It’s over the top but if it’s going to keep your phone dry, it’s worth the read. $69.99

B. Griffin Technology Survivor
This case will make Duck Dynasty fans giddy since it’s finished in Mossy Oak Treestand. Obviously, other colors are available and it offers good security for a reasonable price. The camera flap is fiddly to access and difficult to keep open when snapping a photo, but it’s all part of the impressive protection offered. $49.99

C. Ballistic SG MAXX
Ever get frustrated and feel like chucking your phone off a 15ft building? Now you can (although not recommended) with the SG MAXX. One of the more serious cases we’ve come across, it includes an easy access belt clip when you need to keep your hands free. $39.99

D. Ballistic Hard Core
The Hard Core is a badass version of the MAXX. This means it should exceed the 15ft drop test thanks to its military specification. It provides five layers of protection to ensure a safe iPhone for anybody in the field or on the construction site. It’s rather bulky but if you need phone protection, this is a great option. You can easily remove the outer silicone cover when you don’t need the ultimate protection but we’ve used one of these for several years and the phone remains like new. $59.99

E. Ballistic Every1
The Every1 protection system is designed for people navigating the concrete jungle. This Ballistic urban protection employs soft-touch silicon surfaces with a sleek hard plastic structure that will save your iPhone from modest knocks. $49.99

F. Snow Lizard SLXtreme
This was our favorite because it takes the task seriously. Complete with solar pack, additional battery, shockproof case and water-resistant up to 6.5ft, the SLXtreme is capable of surviving nearly any situation. Just pop the water seal hatch at the top, drop your phone inside and chuck it in your adventure backpack. Every aspect of the design is user-friendly, from the simple button actuation to the relatively light touchscreen protector. It’s expensive, but this might be the ultimate protection. $129.99



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