Thursday, October 30, 2014

Let's Do The News! (October 30, 2014)

The big scoop today...

- On the latest developments on the Ebola Outbreak, a nurse who cared for Ebola patients in Sierra Leone is condemning the US state of Main over the right to quarantine her against her will. Kaci Hickox, the Ebola nurse, vowed to leave her home country if the US does not lift the restrictions.

- Meanwhile in Jerusalem, Israeli authorities have killed a Palestinian suspected of shooting a prominent right-wing Jewish activist hours earlier. Yehuda Glick was badly injured after a meeting where he called for greater Jewish access at a disputed holy site.

- The Japanese government and Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) are revising the time table for decommissioning the No. 1 reactor at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.

- A field commander of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and a Maguindanao village councilor were killed during an ambush somewhere in Sultan Kudarat.

- Department of Health secretary Enrique Ona has gone on leave despite rumors that he will be fired.

- BMW unveiled the brand new X5M and X6M high-performance utility vehicles, both of which are powered by the similar 4.4L V8 turbo engine and xDrive all-wheel-drive system.

2016 BMW X5M and 2016 BMW X6M
- More Pokemon toys announcement courtesy of Takara Tomy! In anticipation for the upcoming Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire games, new additions on the MonColle lineup are announced such as Mega Aggron, Treecko, Torchic, Mudkip, Metagross, Latios, Latias, Rayquaza, Primal Groudon, and Primal Kyogre. Also, new Pokemon plush toys have announced such as Mudkip, Torchic, Treecko, and Serena's Pancham. All new Pokemon toys will be launched this November 2014.

- Ford Motor Company to launch the 2016MY update on the Explorer crossover at this year's LA Auto Show.


- Paolo Bediones broke his silence about his viral video scandal for the first time.

- After 12 years, actress Jolina Magdangal returns to ABS-CBN for her upcoming daytime TV drama along with the recently returned Marvin Agustin.


Forza Horizon 2 - Barn Find #04: Ferrari GTO


Now this is what my big plans for the Willys Jeep looks like. I decided to turn the vintage jeep into something more reminiscent of the Filipino equivalent of hot rods that were built in the shed; an owner type jeep. Like hot rods, owner-type jeeps were made from the shed and apart from the steel bodywork they've made, they're using old parts from old cars, mostly sedans, hatchbacks, or whatever. Although while owner-type jeeps look like offroaders, they feel like cars and they don't do off-roads unless if necessary.

Well, there's more to it than that, anyway, want to show how it's made? Huh? What's this? I've picked up a BARN FIND RUMOR? Involving an abandoned Ferrari 288 GTO?


The barn find in question was marked between San Giovanni and Montellino, my next stop for the Horizon Festival, and after venturing through the forest full of trees, I have discovered that the 288 GTO barn find is just 3.6 miles from the Horizon Festival. Just like the rest of the barn finds discovered (so far, it's been three barn finds discovered), if you found it, wait for a couple of minutes or hours until you get the notification that the 288 GTO's restored and then rush to the nearest hub to claim it.


Such a timeless supercar, isn't it? Anyway, the GTO name, derived from the legendary 250 GTO Le Mans racer, was used for Ferrari's berlinetta that was produced from 1984 to 1985 with a total of 272 units produced. Originally, that car was used to compete in the Group B Race series but when they found out that Group B racing was ceased to exist, it never got a chance to race one and as a matter of fact, all 272 cars are made to be road-legal. It was powered by a 2.9L turbocharged V8 engine that produces 395HP of power and 366lb-ft of torque. It's 0-60 was in the upper 4-second range and flat-out, it can do 189mph. It may not be as quick as the legendary F40, the first supercar in the world to break the 200mph barrier, but it's still an impressive car to drive if you're in the mood for savoring that Ferrari nostalgia you've been longing for since...the beginning of time probably.

Speaking of impressive, the road trip to Montellino's on and it's time for me to use that barn find I've recently discovered. See you later!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Let's Do The News! (October 29, 2014)

The big scoop today...

- Just when they thought they had a very successful liftoff but it ended in a catastrophic failure. The 14-story autonomous Orbital Sciences supply rocket Antares, contracted by nasa to deliver supplies to the International Space Station, exploded seconds after its launch.

- Ultranationalist cyberactivists are threatening against the village of Sarufutsu over a memorial where 80 Korean laborers died of abuse and malnutrition while building an airfield at the behest of the Japanese military during World War II. It looks like Japan's war crimes from WWII are still lurking around. You might remember that last year, Prime Minister Abe visited the Yasukuni Shrine, a shrine where Japanese soldiers who fought during the war were remembered, especially the war criminals, and stirred outrage from neighboring countries.

- As this year's Undas is fast approaching, Makati City will be one of the cities from the Philippines to suspend number coding on the 31st of October while re-routing and road closures are expected.

- While we're anticipating for the upcoming Age of Ultron movie, Marvel announced a third Avengers movie called the Infinity War and it gets better because it will be a two-parter with the first part slated for 2018 release. This is part of the planned 11 Marvel films set to screen in the coming years.

- The seventh Fast and Furious movie is named and it will be called Furious 7.

- Nissan will showcase the Kicks Concept at this year's Sao Paulo Motor Show, hinting at an upcoming Brazil-exclusive model in the future.

Nissan Kicks Concept

- IS THIS THE NEXT FIAT STRADA? Fiat will showcase the FCC4 Concept at this year's Sao Paulo Motor Show also...

Fiat FCC4 Concept

- Wave goodbye to the Audi R8 as for the upcoming 2014 LA Auto Show, they'll be showcasing a final edition before an all new model arrives soon. Called the R8 Competition, the final edition features some racecar-inspired exterior cues while using the R8 V10 Plus as its base. Sadly, it's for USA only and limited to 60 units. Bummer...

Audi R8 Competition


Toyota Esquire

For the first time, the current-generation Toyota Voxy and Noah minivans have spawned a triplet to their family and for this triplet, it can be summed up as a fancier version of these two as well as its fancy name to call it Esquire (エスクァイア).

2015 Toyota Esquire

As expected, the brand new Esquire is based on the recently launched Toyota Noah and Voxy minivans, which they were launched since January 2014, although I'm not a hundred percent sure if this is the replacement to the stagnant Isis minivan but contrary to the rumors, the new Esquire, like the latest Noah and Voxy vans, is powered by a 2.0L 3ZR-FAE engine and the hybrid model with the 1.8L engine connected to an electric motor and nickel metal battery. Details on what's what about that will be explained later but first, let's examine the design.

Of course, this new Esquire van differentiates it from the Noah and Voxy vans because while the Noah is a bit more of a soccer mom fave and the Voxy is all about being a sporty minivan, the Esquire features a luxurious look that balances between them although one will notice the overgrown grille that looks like it came from the Crown Majesta flagship. Fancy, isn't it?

2015 Toyota Esquire interior

2015 Toyota Esquire interior

Because the new Esquire is related to the Noah and Voxy, you can expect the same interior layout as seen from these two and depending on the model, the new model can seat up to seven or eight people around you and while it may not be as luxurious as the big brothers, the Alphard/Vellfire and the Estima, the Esquire isn't half bad at all when it comes to spacing, although I would personally go seat at either the front or at the second-row because I still have strong hatred for third-row seats. With all three rows of seating present, there's still enough room for your grocery shopping but when you have more than just groceries, say your stuff you've bought from the garage sale, these seats can be folded for extra luggage. There's also a secret storage at the back but on hybrid models, you'll store less than what the petrol models have due to the battery that occupies it. Bummer but the secret storage is not bad at all judging when you want to store something not even your junior would know.

Just like the Noah and the Voxy, the new Esquire is benefitted from its class-leading interior dimensions thanks to its 1,400 mm cabin height, 360mm of ground clearance, 2nd row 810mm captain seats with Super 4-way Sliding Mode, and 500mm of rear floor (for 2WD models). Also, the sliding doors can be opened at 805mm wider, more than any other JDM minivans in its class. 

2015 Toyota Esquire

Now, the most important aspect for the Esquire; the performance. Because the powerplants were the same as from the Noah and the Voxy, the Esquire comes with a 2.0L 3ZR-FAE engine and the hybrid model with the 1.8L engine connected to an electric motor and nickel metal battery. On the hybrid model, combined power output is 136PS and fuel economy of 23.8km/L, calculated in JC08 Mode standards. As noticed, that's 7.8kmpl more than the Serena's, making it an excellent travelling companion if you want to go from one prefecture to another. For the 2.0L petrol variant, it produces 152PS of power and 193Nm of torque. It even comes with the idling stop system that cuts off the engine when stop and then starts it again when on the move. Fuel economy is 16.0km/L, again, calculated in JC08 Mode standards. Although this family-mover is not half bad, the suspension is not quite suited for a luxury-esque minivan like the Esquire especially when the suspension setup consists of struts on the front and torsion beams on the back, perhaps you really can't tell why this new model feels a

Prices start at 2,622,857 Japanese Yen (around $27,000), which is more expensive than its Noah and Voxy siblings, but while the Noah is available at Corolla dealerships and the Voxy at Netz dealerships, the new Esquire is available exclusively at Toyota and Toyopet dealerships across Japan so you have a choice between those three.

Available colors: White Pearl Crystal Shine, Silver Metallic, Black, Sparkling Black Pearl Crystal Shine, Bordeaux Mica Metallic, Ocean Mint Metallic, and Dark Violet Mica Metallic.

Photo: Toyota Motor Corporation

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

HALLOWEEN 2014: Loser candies to avoid

*This post is a carry-over from one of my last year's Halloween special posts.

Loser Candy

Well, it's that time of the year again when the kids dressed up as their favorites and then head out to the suburbs to get some candy for the fun of it. Of course, being kids, they are too picky and they don't like "loser candy" which is a term as heard from a Gravity Falls episode. The loser candy probability can be somewhat CRITICAL and you'll never know when will loser candy hits you, making your trick-or-treating the worst so what are the "loser candies" you should avoid this Halloween?

1) Sugar-free candy

As kids, they have cravings for sugar coated confectionery but some neighbors think they are concerned because of, well, diabetes or toothache, and what they will do is taking the reversal that is...sugar-free candy. They may look like candies but sugar. If you encounter those, AVOID. Oh and if you're diabetic and if you don't want the risk of losing a leg, don't go trick-or-treating. Just saying...

2) Pixy Stix

These powdered candy known as Pixy Stix is far out one of the worst candies to avoid for Halloween because they're far too...well, bland for their taste and sweetness. It's about as rubbish as...drinking unsweetened tea at McDonald's.

3) Chocolate-dipped apples

Come on, no kid in the world wants that. These apples dipped in chocolate on a stick are considered "loser candy" kid of today likes fruits disguised in chocolate. See one of these from your neighbors and AVOID.

4) Hard candy

Whether if it's mint flavored, fruit flavored, or for worse, taste like medicine, this is the one to avoid because there is a risk that your teeth can't handle the hardness. If I were in that situation, I would rather just swallow it rather than biting it.

5) Mounds or Almond Joy

They may look like chocolate but when you ate one of those...(vomiting) Why would they made these piece of crud? Nobody likes those for Halloween!

6) Jelly belly

These beans taste like plastic and no matter the color and the taste of those, they will always taste like plastic. AVOID these loser beans on Halloween.

7) Candy corn

Invented by a Philadelphian, candy corn is made of wax, sugar, and corn syrup. By the looks of it, it looks like a corn's kernel but if you manage to eat one...these candy corns can be a bit blah and makes you as disappointed as a man during the Great Depression. AVOID this loser candy when you see one.

8) Licorice

Licorice is considered a "loser candy" and best to avoid one of these if you don't want your jack-o-lantern get jacked up with a pile of rubbish.

9) Circus Peanut

As Candy from Gravity Falls may say "Circus peanut? This is loser candy!"

10) Wax candy

From wax lips to wax cola bottles, these wax candies are the ones to avoid as well because...who would rather eat some wax or something? Ahem...wax Museum or Star Wax of polishing wax of whatever...who would eat wax as a candy?!

11) Necco Wafers

These two-centuries old candies are the king of "loser candies" because not only it's old but the chalky taste of those thin candy wafers in a pack makes it the ultimate "loser candy" to avoid this Halloween.

12) Asian candies

WATCH OUT! Some of your neighbors bought out some candies straight from Asian stores. See one of those suspicious-looking candies straight from Asia and AVOID. No kid likes those for Halloween.

There are so many loser candies your neighbors might throw at you but beware...not all neighbors may give you candy but sometimes un-edibles or for worse...FRUITS! If you don't want to wind up in that situation, use science to determine which of your neighbors serve the best candies, which serves "loser candies" or both. Be careful, some may come up with a surprise attack on your jack-o-lantern full of candies.

So there you go, next time when you're out trick-or-treating this Halloween, use the data gathered from this segment and find out which "loser candy" you should avoid from your neighbors.

HALLOWEEN 2014: Tips during the Undas traffic

*This article is a carry-over from one of last year's Halloween special post, although there are some minor changes to keep it in tune with the times

All Saints' Day is on November 1st, 2014, which is the day after Halloween. All Saints' Day is a holiday where families visit the graveyard to pay respects for the fallen. However, there's more to it than that because what to expect on All Saints' Day is heavy duty traffic. That's right. Slow-moving traffic that will surely leave you dead after long hours of traffic. No wonder it's a non-working holiday but hey, if you and your family had your ride to the cemetery and expect a very long traffic during UNDAS 2014, what are your best ways to kill your boredom when the annual heavy Undas traffic kicks in?

1) Pack lots of snacks, meals, and drinks on your trip

The heavy traffic on the way to your cemetery will leave you thirsty and starved on the road. The best thing to do is before you leave your home and to the cemetery is to pack enough snacks and drinks on your trip. Either your mom's fully-cooked meal sealed in Tupperware boxes or crisps such as Chippy, Nova, Ding Dong, Tortillios or whatever junk food you know, make sure you have enough snacks while getting stuck in traffic. Oh yeah, as for drinks, stock up on whatever you want; mineral water, soda, sports drinks, iced tea, whatever drink you want but one more thing; NO ALCOHOL. Remember the whole "don't drink and drive" law.

2) Entertainment

Long traffic usually means boredom for the people heading to the cemetery and the best to do is open up your car's radio and set to FM frequency because everybody needs music. Get it? If radio isn't enough, either your portable TV (if you had one), your MP3 player, or your hand held console would do but be sure that it's fully charged before on the go. If possible, bring a mobile charger with you but make sure your car has enough power to charge your gadgets!

3) Servicing

Your car is nothing more of a traveling companion when you need it so it's best to service it before you go. Make sure the parts are working fine as well as the lights, the brakes, the oil, and the electric supply. Oh and if you're brave enough through the high gas prices, be sure to full tank your car. It maybe an expensive solution but if you're not into driving, seek public transportation or hitch a ride with a buddy.

4) Internet connectivity

 A long road away from home usually means one thing, you can't do internet because you're miles away from your home's broadband but not to worry. If you brought your laptop and any other Wi-Fi capable gadgets, make sure that you have a mobile Wi-Fi with you. Make sure that it has enough load (or charge) in order to go internet surfing while on the move. Oh yeah, if you guys made it to the cemetery, be sure to check in from your Swarm! Your friends will notice that you came from a long trip this Undas!

5) Defense

A long trip can be somewhat risky because there are some jologs wanted to steal your ride or doing some kind of a Mad Max-style of attacks. Defensive driving may be unnecessary in an event like this but this can save you and your family from bad people trying to hurt you on your way to the cemetery. If you have long objects surrounded on your car, these can make a vital defense in case some crooks approached you with a gun pointing at you. Keep Calm and Aim for the Head. Time to say rest in peace, crooks!

6) Don't let the kids say "Are We There Yet?"

If you had kids with you on your trip, then you're in bad luck because the only question kids will tell you on your way to the cemetery is the dreaded ARE WE THERE YET? Tell your kids no, stop asking questions, and ask them to play with their toys. Silence is virtue on this trip.

7) Do your All Saints home

If you're not in the mood to travel, why not do this at home? Make a faux tombstone (out of your cardboard) and be sure to have candles so you can pay respects without travelling through the long traffic!

So there you go, these are the best ways to kill your boredom when the annual heavy Undas traffic kicks in. Have a nice road trip this All Saints' Day!

Let's Do The News! (October 28, 2014)

The big scoop today...

- According to Mexico's Atty. Gen. Jesus Murillo Karam, the testimony of two arrested members of a drug gang had led them to the site of the suspected mass grave as the search for the missing 43 students who vanished after last month's protest continues. Earlier, the second mass grave was found and found none of the students' bodies.

- The US health officials will monitor active health workers who have treated Ebola patients in West Africa under new guidelines that will require them to be checked for symptoms for 21 days but will not require quarantine or isolation.

- It's been a month have passed since the Hong Kong public held mass protests and activists are calling on supporters to gather for an evening rally wearing the masks they've used to fend off against police forces.

- Is this the end of the Mahjong pastime? A Communist party's newspaper from China urged the Chinese government personnel to put an end of the ancient Chinese pastime.

- Philippine President Benigno Aquino III admitted that the Congress delayed the contracting generating sets for the imminent energy crisis in the Philippines.

- Top Gear announced their brand new 2014 original video coming this November 17th. Called "The Perfect Road Trip 2", Richard Hammond and Jeremy Clarkson are going to get things right after last year's "perfect road trip" ended in failure when French authorities banned them from driving on French roads! On this sequel, Jezza and Hamster will be travelling from Venice to the Isle of Capri via Bologna, Siena, Rome, Pompeii, Sorrento and Positano on the stunning Amalfi coast.


- Mazda to feature a brand new compact SUV at this year's LA Auto Show from the 18th to the 30th of November, 2014. It's called the CX-3 and while it's based on the latest Demio, some say it will have the same engine output from the Roadster/MX-5 Miata ND.

Mazda new compact SUV sketch teaser

- Two characters from the Nisekoi -False Love- anime series, Seishiro Tsugumi and Kosaki Onodera, spawned themselves a Nendoroid version courtesy of Good Smile Company!

Nendoroid Kosaki Onodera

Nendoroid Seishiro Tsugumi

- Liv and Maddie star Dove Cameron is the next Disney celeb to spread a message for Disney's Choose Kindness campaign, telling everyone to "be the light". She said:

“As you may have heard, October is bullying prevention month,” she wrote. “As someone who was bullied all throughout school, this cause is very near and dear to my heart, and I feel honored that I am in a position to help spread the word about this incredible message.”

- Subaru is teasing an STi-version of the Forester crossover, set for its November 25th reveal.

Teaser for the Forester tS

Monday, October 27, 2014

Let's Do The News! (October 27, 2014)

The big scoop today...

- Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff won her second-term at the Brazilian elections with 51.6% votes from the public. She has promised to re-unite the Latin American nation and make big changes society demands.

- Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko plans to begin coalition talks after a win for pro-Western parties in Sunday's parliamentary elections. There was no voting in eastern areas, where the pro-Russian rebels took control of it, especially Crimea, which the Russians annexed it last March.

- US President Barack Obama expressed concern about strict quarantines announced by three states for health workers returning from West Africa where the Ebola Outbreak worsens.

- Cabinet ministers from 12 Asia-Pacific nations have called for working-level talks to continue the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement and they'll meet again within several weeks. They've issued a joint statement at the final day of the 3-day talks in Sydney, Australia.

- There was an oil leakage from a ruptured pipe from the Sual Power Station and operators from this plant deployed work crews to put a stop to it.

- (yawn) Another pointless KanColle merch announcement as Good Smile Company unveiled a figma of the second Nagato-class battleship, Mutsu, from the most-talked browser game Kantai Collection. (sigh) She'll be deploying at your nearest shops this May with the 6,296 (before tax) Japanese Yen pricing.

figma Mutsu

- The limited-edition Su-47 Berkut Grabacr model kit, part of Hasegawa Hobby Kits' Ace Combat lineup has been revealed and it's ready for its sortie at your nearest hobby stores this mid-November. This model kit is based on the villain plane from Ace Combat 5: The Unsung War and its prequel Ace Combat Zero: The Belkan War (belonging to someone with the TAC Name: Grabacr). Pair this one with the F-14A Razgriz plane and you can recreate the final aerial battle from The Unsung War!

Su-47 Berkut Ace Combat Grabacr

- The Insidious saga continues as the first trailer of Insidious Chapter 3 has hit the internet. CHECK IT OUT if you dare.

- Remember the episode from Girl Meets World that tackles more on anti-bullying? Well, the quest of spreading message against bullying isn't over as the cast of the hit Disney Channel TV series are showcased with shirts celebrating Disney's Choose Kindness campaign. Rowan Blanchard, Sabrina Carpenter, August Maturo, and Corey Fogelmanis, each took a photo wearing a shirt with a different positive message.


Subaru Legacy - Sixth Generation

The Subaru Legacy is officially on its 25th year since the first one debuted in late 1989. For its 25th year, the Legacy has been regenerated to its sixth-generation and while it's okay to look at, it's somewhat not okay to drive one but why?

2015 Subaru Legacy B4

2015 Subaru Legacy Outback

For the first time in Legacy history, the Touring Wagon was been officially axed from the lineup and it was supplemented by the Impreza-based Levorg station wagon, which remains a Japan-only car for now. Which means, for the sixth-generation model, it's now available only in B4 sedan and Outback crossover, which is kinda odd but why would they add a crossover version of the wagon no longer available for this generation?

To make things worse, the new model is now available only with the updated version of the FB25 boxer engine with Lineartronic CVT gearbox. I know that this combo will lead to a fuel economy, as calculated by 14.8kmpl (14.6kmpl for the Outback), which is not bad, but when it comes to driving one, it's going to be one slow trip at a snail's pace. On the flipside, however, both the new Legacy and Outback can bring it on whatever Mother Nature takes on and it doesn't really matter if they're on tarmac, gravel, snow, or whatever because of Subaru's legendary Symmetrical AWD and its boxer engine's low center of gravity. It keeps it as firm as you're glued to your seat by some anonymous prankster but never mind that part. The result is the handling that is not half bad for either a sports saloon or a crossover utility wagon, although the use of double wishbones and struts are a bit of an old-school for these models. Feels like there not quite getting through the groove when faced against numerous rivals from a multitude of countries.

2015 Subaru Legacy Outback
2015 Subaru Legacy B4

With safety as its number one priority for Subaru, the new Legacy, in B4 sedan and Outback crossover, doesn't come ready for the road without the breakthrough EyeSight ver. 3, which uses stereo cameras for adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assist, and collision warning/prevention. Those technologies were the same thing we found on the Levorg station wagon and this safety-technology are second-to-none if you're really careful on how to use it well. I heard that this car won the IIHA Top Safety Pick+ thanks to this option and it's the only Japanese carmaker with IIHS Top Safety Picks for all models for the last five years. There is a well-known fact that 95% of Subaru vehicles sold in the last 10 years are still on the road today and for this new-generation, I really had high hopes that it will stay sturdy through the end of eternity and that's good...probably.

There's more because on the Outback, it comes with the X-Mode feature as seen on the current-gen Forester. The X-Mode system keeps the new Outback more stable and more responsive when taking on off-road terrain and with the Hill Descent Control. the new Outback maintains the vehicle’s speed so the driver can focus more on steering. That is just the tip of the technological iceberg.

2015 Subaru Legacy B4 interior

2015 Subaru Legacy Outback interior

Design-wise, the new Subaru Legacy models are more solid and more dynamic than the previous generations, although I find pity to the B4 model because it kinda looked like the Hyundai LF Sonata upon further observation. While the interior isn't what you called premium, it's still not half bad to look at judging by its seats, the legroom, the sat-nav, the paddle shifters, the cup holders, on and on. This is somewhat like when your office cubicle from work meets Starbucks but that's just how the pencil-pushers ruining the interior affairs for no reason.

The new Legacy B4 starts at 2,862,000 Japanese Yen while the new Legacy Outback starts at 3,132,000 Japanese Yen so it's not what you called cheap but your Sir Chief would definitely want one for his family at this moment in time even though this new model promises better value for money thanks to its AWD, the optional Eyesight, and its fuel economy not bad for a company car. For now, it's evaluation time. While the Legacy isn't much more fun to drive than the originals and more expensive than its rivals, it's now more matured in the technological stakes judging with the help of Eyesight and X-Mode (only applicable for the Outback), and this is not a half bad car for a start.

Available Colors (B4): Crystal White Pearl, Ice Silver Metallic, Dark Grey Metallic, Crystal Black Silica, Venetian Red Pearl, Lapis Blue Pearl, Deep Sea Blue Pearl.

Available Colors (Outback): Crystal White Pearl, Ice Silver Metallic, Platinum Grey Metallic, Dark Grey Metallic, Crystal Black Silica, Venetian Red Pearl, Tungsten Metallic, Lapis Blue Pearl, Deep Sea Blue Pearl.

Photo: Fuji Heavy Industries

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Forza Horizon 2: Barn Find #03: Jeep Willys MB


When you've encountered a third barn find rumor on Forza Horizon 2, then you'll notice that it was marked somewhere within the vicinity of San Giovanni in western Italy. Recon suggests that it's a few yards near the East Saint-Martin Speed Trap so the barn find in question is nearby.


For recon purposes, I've used the brand new Renault Sport Clio 200 EDC, part of the Mobil 1 Car Pack. You can use any car you want to find the barn find in question but feel free to use whatever means necessary in order to get that treasured machine. Remember, the barn find is located near the East Saint-Martin Speed Trap but if you're new, it's going to take a lot of time until you spot one. If you found one, you'll have to wait for a few minutes until a notification flashed to your screen, meaning that your barn find is now ready for pickup and can be usable in-game.


I've never driven an offroad vehicle that was born for military use by the US Army several decades ago but hey, I just remembered. This military vehicle was once originated the Jeep name although there are some puzzles about the origin of the Jeep word via this car, although it was claimed from the slurring of the letters GP, the military term for General Purpose while others say it came for a character named "Eugene the Jeep" from the Popeye cartoon strip. No one knows what is the true origin of the Jeep term from this vehicle but it doesn't matter because having a machine born from the age of Allies vs. Axis Powers is a collector's item in FH2. Drive it, race it, customizing it, the rest is all up to you to turn this war-born machine into one of the coolest offroaders you can drive through the entire Southern Europe.

Do I have big plans for this Willys Jeep? You'll find out soon in a later post...

Doctor Who S08E10

Doctor Who S08E10

The London Jungle and how did the British capitol plagued with the forest's curse is the main story of this episode from Doctor Who titled "In the Forest of the Night" as The Doctor, Clara Oswald, Danny Pink, and a handful of students are finding out the cause of this. To make things worse, there's a massive solar flare going to engulf the world within a few moments. When The Doctor revealed that the trees saved the world from catastrophes, they're taking advantage of the overgrown forests as a protection against the imminent solar flare. After that, the world is back to the way things were. Now that we learned that trees will one day save us from imminent catastrophes, a good moral lesson to all the tree-huggers out there.

BTS from this episode:


This is it! Part 1 of the Series 8 finale! See you next week!

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Lexus RC (C10)

2015 Lexus RC

This is Lexus' attempt to take on the A5, 4-Series, and the ATS Coupe and it's called the RC. And if by RC, it kinda sounds like that RC Cola machine we don't really want because like one time you think there's a Coca-Cola machine but turned out it was just a mirage. It's just an RC Cola machine. 

So, before talking about the RC, let's take a look back on the Z30-spec Toyota Soarer, a car that was known worldwide as the first Lexus SC. You see, the Z30-spec Soarer is a good car for a start. You might think this is more of a Supra in fancy clothes and yes it is because speedo boys love to spent a boatload of cash into customizing it, that's why that particular Soarer is a true driver's car because of its fun to drive character right until the Z40-spec Soarer showed up and its reputation ruined.

2015 Lexus RC

What Lexus wanted to have is to capture the spirit of the Z30-spec Toyota Soarer while adapting to today's climate that most drivers currently live in but the main question is, does the new RC feel like the Z30 Soarer? Let's see...

The Lexus RC starts at 5,650,000 Japanese Yen and what you'll get is either a 3.5L V6 engine mated with an 8-speed automatic gearbox or a 2.5L 4-cylinder engine connected to an electric motor and a nickel metal battery while mated with a CVT gearbox. Whichever variant you'll choose, you can opt for an F-Sport model which comes with Lexus Dynamic Handling System, stiffer suspension system, improved brakes, and so much more. If I had a choice, I would always want to go for the V6 model with the F-Sport on it because driving one of these feels like the Soarers of the 90's or so I thought.

2015 Lexus RC

When you're using F-Sport models of the GS and IS for further inspiration, you will notice that the RC is much more like these 4-door Lexus cars in such getup. It's like a trio of male vocals trying to start a boyband to woo the audience with their serenading tunes but this is not made for serenading people, the RC tries to feel like the SC but all those technological gizmos lurking beneath its striking looks can be bothersome even for a novice. For instance, when you engage Sport + on the Drive Mode Selector, it makes the car less comfortable to drive but more sharper to handle in the bends just like what you expect on those Lexus sedans.

It maybe more wonderful to drive and more enjoyable than the daft Lexus SC but when compared against the German aggressors, the Lexus RC is a bit of a low-level threat because the Germans employed the best arsenal to keep themselves faster, smarter, and stronger while the Japanese still focus on making boring cars more boring...a contrast to Tokyo's vibrant energy as a fun city filled with everything an otaku wants. To make things worse, there's a heavier and slower hybrid model which uses the same 2.5L 4-cylinder engine from the Toyota Crown and Lexus IS relatives while connected to an electric motor and a nickel metal battery. While the fuel economy of 23.2kmpl for a two-door coupe is good, the performance figures are a contrast to the RC's sporty looks. It's like when a guy dressed smartly to school but ended up failing with bad grades. What a pitiful sight and this is like a scenario when you think there's a Dr. Pepper vending machine, you're rushing for it but found out it was a mirage...and it's just an RC Cola machine. Get it now?

2015 Lexus RC interior

2015 Lexus RC interior

While the RC may not be the sharpest car to drive at, the interior is highly questionable in the eyes of a connoisseur. Sure, it was carried over from the IS but there's a sneaking suspicion that this is their new uniform interior for Lexus, much like what BMW and Cadillac did when they employ the same interior in different models over and over again but hey, you don't want to swallow that.

Time now for an evaluation: I was hoping for the RC to be the modern-day version of the Z30-spec Toyota Soarer from the 90's and made to look at luxury coupes in a whole new day but it isn't. It maybe sporty to drive and exciting to look at but in the game of softdrinks, they're treating it like an underdog to their game. Although it maybe new but one day, just like that volleyball team representing RC Cola at the SuperLiga Grand Prix, it will triumph against all odds but count me out on this. No one likes a bottle of RC Cola at this time. (sigh)

Available Colors: White Nova Glass Flake, White Pearl Crystal Shine, Platinum Silver Metallic, Sonic Titanium, Mercury Gray Mica, Black, Starlight Black Glass Flake, Radiant Red Contrast Layering, Lava Orange Crystal Shine, and Heat Blue Contrast Layering.

Photo: Toyota Motor Corporation
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