What's motivating him is this: He's 36 years old and is intent on becoming only the second driver, after Briton Graham Hill, to win motorsport's Triple Crown. That entails winning the Formula One title (or just the Monaco Grand Prix according to one interpretation) as well as Indianapolis and Le Mans.
With plenty of low-down grunt, it’s all too easy to overwhelm the rear wheels, especially if you have the traction control switched off. At first, this can feel a little disconcerting, but with time you learn to trust the big Jag – its long wheelbase ensuring that slides happen slowly and controllably. Before you know it, you’ll be playing with the throttle through long corners, the rear happily carving an angle wider than the front. It’s addictive, childish, raw fun.
The other oversteer situation happens on the exit of a corner, and usually happens when too much power has been applied. You'll see this situation in TV shows where presenters drive powerful rear-drive cars in tyre-smoking burnouts, and it's the basic principle behind the drift movement. Again, if this happens in the real world, you need to steer in the direction of the skid to mitigate the situation. Braking suddenly will only make the situation worse, so you need to try and be smooth and either maintain speed or scrub off speed gradually while adjusting the steering so that the nose of the car is pointing in the direction of travel. Again, look where you want to go, and the car should follow.
Burns said the general public has given the electric pickup an unexpectedly strong reception, and now the company is trying to decide whether to build a consumer-focused version. “We’ve really been wrestling with it,” he said. “But we want to cut our teeth with fleets because that’s our DNA. We want to make sure we never disappoint them.” The N-Gen has all-wheel drive, which is unusual for a commercial van. “These delivery guys have to go in all sorts of weather,” Burns said. Meanwhile, the company touts the low-floor design combined with the body-on-frame layout and standard pickup-truck ride height as providing a good blend of clearance, durability, and loading ease. Workhorse says that its electric vehicles have already logged nearly two million miles and are in use in 14 states. The company has been ramping up production at an Indiana plant; this summer and fall, it made 143 of its larger E-Gen trucks for the United Parcel Service (out of a total order of 200 from UPS), and it is currently at a production rate of about three vehicles a day. W.B. Mason has also placed an order for those larger vehicles, Ryder is providing sales and support, and Workhorse has one other large order pending that Burns can’t yet talk about. With its current factory, Workhorse can make 60,000 vehicles of the roadgoing kind per year. And if the USPS contract happens? “We could probably fit more,” Burns added. “But it falls under ‘good problems to have.’ ” It’s Really about the Last Mile If you’re in the shipping logistics business—or if you have anything to do with e-commerce and shipping goods—“last-mile delivery” is what it’s all about. In the last mile or few miles of getting a parcel to its final destination, the costs ratchet up, and the task becomes more complex. It’s exactly what Workhorse appears to be trying to address with its approach, which embraces electrification and, when necessary, takes to the skies. According to a report last year from McKinsey & Company, 60 percent of consumers are either in favor of or indifferent to drone delivery.
There are lots of reasons why people buy cars, from a change in circumstances, such as becoming a parent, to retiring. But when it comes to why people keep their cars and stick with the same brand year after year, there’s one factor that has the biggest influence: reliability.
Mark Blackwell of Jacksonville, Fla., has logged more than 1 million miles in just two Corvettes. But the first one, at just 342,000 miles, was a garage queen compared to his second car. The red 2000 Corvette coupe has racked up 773,338 miles, enough to earn it a place of honor in the National Corvette Museum.
We like General Motors’ free-spinning 3.6-liter V-6 in most of its applications, and it does a fine job in the 1LE most of the time, pulling cleanly from low revs and making the snarling noises you’d expect from a pony car when pressed a little harder. But although it runs to 7000 rpm without complaint, it also does so without fireworks, struggling to deliver on straight-line pace when compared to either its more muscular siblings or the broader sports-car segment. It wasn’t that long ago that a 5.2-second zero-to-60-mph time would have been regarded as a serious achievement, but now it feels almost leisurely, as does the 13.8-second quarter-mile time at a trap speed of just 101 mph. For perspective, the V-8 1LE reaches 70 mph in less time than it takes the V-6 car to get to 60, and it will be past 120 mph by the time the smaller-engined car reaches 100.
Racing with Toyota at Le Mans and other endurance races should give him better luck than he had this season with McLaren-Honda in F1 and at Indy. Though Toyota has never won Le Mans, it is known to be developing a new WEC car.
"Henry Ford II's personal dominance of the company gave it a different character, certainly different from other publicly owned companies in the automobile game," Miller said in 2003. "GM and Chrysler were not that way. You knew who the boss was. There were no palace politics with anyone trying to take over."
• Blind-spot monitor and rear cross-traffic alert