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Testing car tech, on the track

CNET Car Tech goes to Laguna Seca to test out a variety of road-going cars in 2009.

A Lotus and Acura on the track at Laguna Seca
Corinne Schulze/CNET

We spend a lot of time evaluating the electronics in new cars, digging through navigation system menus, hooking up phones and iPods, and listening to audio systems. But occasionally we get to put these very same cars on the track, to find out how their performance technologies work under stress.

This year, we drove a wide variety of cars on the track at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. There was the new Hyundai Genesis Coupe and Chevrolet Camaro. We had familiar rides such as the BMW M3 and Acura TL SH-AWD. Then there were the race-bred cars, the Audi R8 and Lotus Elise SC. We even had a Kia Soul out there.

Check out our gallery for performance commentary and stunning track photos.