Drive Wire: February 11, 2016

GM recall, a model in trouble, solar roads, a sexy wifi router, and insane kiteboarders.

Hey guys, it’s Christina Thompson and this is Drive Wire for Thursday, February 11.

Important news for owners on one of the most popular vehicles in North America – the Chevy Silverado is facing a safety recall. GM says it needs to fix the brake pedal pivot nut on 473,000 trucks in North America and Canada, as the nut can come loose and cause the brake pedal to fail to work properly. The recall will begin shortly and covers 2015 and 2016 Chevrolet Silverado HD, GMC Sierra HD and certain Tahoe police vehicles. Fortunately this is an easy fix done by a simple dealer inspection and correction.

In more frustrating Alfa Romeo news, the eagerly anticipated Giulia sedan looks like a model in trouble. Not that its looks are the problem, but apparently its behavior is something else entirely. Independent suppliers claim the Alfa has failed as many as three independent crash tests. Alfa is denying this, saying the vehicle will begin production very soon now. But they can’t deny the car’s already been delayed six months. Now unnamed development engineers have been quoted as saying the Giulia’s handling is nervous and unstable and in need of further development. We’re still eager to drive an Alfa Romeo M-3 fighter, but these aren’t good signs and this is not a good omen Alfa’s big return to the U.S.

Turning to environmentally friendly news, here’s something cool out of France – big French transport company Colas is working with the French government to develop solar roads, and plan to put 600 miles of power-generating roadway in place over the next five years. We’ve seen solar roadways before, but this seems to be the first truly practical effort. Colas calls its solar road surface “Watt Way” and claims it is durable, grippy, does not require replacement of the existing road surface, which is a huge benefit in terms of cost and effort. That said, no cost has been announced for the project, but the whole thing is extremely cool in any case.

Today’s gear features a sexy wifi router, not a phrase you’re used to hearing, we’re sure. The Starry Station IQ uses a touchscreen and easy-to-read icons to tell you your connection strength, network health, and other important metrics. Instead of pretending that you’re Indiana Jones searching for the holy grail, Starry Station IQ makes your network name and password easily accessible. If that weren’t enough, the Starry Station IQ breaks down usage among users to identify the network hog. Get yours at starry.com.

In today’s ridiculous video, we ride along with a group of manic kiteboarders as they barrel up steep faces of heavy waves. Combining aerial acrobatics and surfing, these guys make bro sports look really cool. Plus with the visuals of Cape Town, South Africa in the background, this video is perfect for washing away those winter blues.

That’s it for today’s edition of Drive Wire. For more, be sure to come back to thedrive.com, and follow us @thedrive on all your favorite social media platforms.