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    Detroit Auto Show: Haven't You Wanted A Mercedes-Benz GLA45 AMG?


    • Mercedes releases pictures of the of production GLA45 AMG just before the 2014 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.


    Almost two months after Mercedes-Benz showed off the Concept GLA45 AMG at the 2013 Los Angeles auto show, the German luxury automaker has revealed the production GLA45 AMG before its official debut at Detroit.

    If you're having a bit of of déjà vu, you're not the only one. The concept and production GLA45 AMG are essentially the same in their design. On the outsider, there is a unique front fascia with a twin-blade grille, a choice of three different wheel options, and a rear-diffuser with dual exhausts. The inside is similar to the CLA45 AMG with new seats, a floating screen for the infotainment system, and other tweaks to make it feel like an AMG product.

    Under the hood, there is a turbocharged, 2.0L four-cylinder engine with 355 horsepower and 332 pound-feet of torque. A seven-speed dual-clutch transmission and all-wheel help get all of that power to the wheels. The German automaker quotes a 0-60 MPH time of 4.8 seconds - just three-tenths slower than the CLA45 AMG.

    The 2015 Mercedes-Benz GLA45 AMG goes on sale in the U.S. this fall.

    Source: Mercedes-Benz

    William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.

    Press Release is on Page 2


    The new Mercedes-Benz GLA45 AMG

    • Compact SUV with Driving Performance

    Mercedes-AMG rigorously continues its product initiative: with the new GLA45 AMG the performance brand of Mercedes-Benz makes a dynamic statement in the strongly growing segment of compact SUVs. The combination of powerful-distinctive design, exclusive appointments as well as superior engine power and driving performance is unique: the most powerful series-production four-cylinder engine in the world puts 355 hp of power and 332 lb-ft of torque on the road.

    The GLA45 AMG also holds pole position with regard to driving dynamics: it accelerates from zero to 0-60 mph in 4.8 seconds and reaches a top speed of 155 mph (electronically limited). Thanks to the combination of standard performance-oriented AMG 4MATIC four wheel drive and AMG SPEEDSHIFT DCT 7-speed sports transmission, the GLA45 AMG impresses with its equally sporty and efficient drive system concept.

    Tobias Moers, Chairman of the Management Board at Mercedes-AMG GmbH: "The response to the Concept GLA45 AMG during the world premiere at the Los Angeles International Auto Show has reaffirmed our decision to launch this new AMG model. Currently no segment is growing faster than that of compact SUVs. For Mercedes-AMG it is therefore logical to make a dynamic statement in this segment with the GLA45 AMG. Our new high-performance-SUV not only offers the world's most powerful series-production four-cylinder engine, but also impressively low fuel consumption and emissions figures. Not least on account of the performance-oriented AMG 4MATIC four wheel drive, the GLA45 AMG is a true AMG when it comes to driving dynamics."

    Young target group: styling, dynamics and independence

    In addition to the CLA45 AMG, the GLA45 AMG is the second vehicle with a four-cylinder turbo engine to appeal to a young target group. Customers take a great interest in styling, dynamics and independence – traits that are perfectly embodied in the new high-performance SUV from Affalterbach. Meeting a wide variety of customer desires has always been one of the strengths of Mercedes-AMG. The GLA45 AMG now expands the extensive high-performance SUV lineup to four models in the U.S. (GLA45 AMG, ML63 AMG, GL63 AMG, and G63 AMG). Mercedes-AMG thus offers the widest range of SUVs among all high-performance premium brands.

    Hallmark AMG features: the world's most powerful series-produced four-cylinder engine

    Best in class: the GLA45 AMG engine fully lives up to this claim, as a look at the figures shows. The AMG 2.0-liter turbo engine is the most powerful series production four-cylinder turbo engine in the world. It produces 355 hp of power and develops a peak torque of 332 lb-ft. A power output of 178 hp puts the AMG high-performance turbo engine on a par with the world's most powerful super sports cars.

    Development of the high-performance turbo engine placed emphasis on a sustainable reduction in particulate emissions. The AMG 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbo engine features spray-guided direct petrol injection with piezo injectors positioned centrally in the four combustion chambers and an injection pressure of 200 bar. The combination of multiple fuel injection and multiple spark ignition improves fuel economy and significantly increases the thermodynamic efficiency, leading to low exhaust emissions. The injection system's outstanding flexibility also ensures a high degree of freedom in terms of application. There are up to five injections per combustion cycle in the coldstart and warm-up phase, which is so crucial for emissions. One of the key factors for in-engine particulate reduction is a reduction of the individual injection quantities.

    Further highlights of the AMG 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbo engine:

    • Gravity-die sand-cast all-aluminum crankcase
    • Weight-optimized crank mechanism with forged steel crankshaft
    • Forged pistons with friction-optimized piston rings
    • NANOSLIDE cylinder liner technology
    • Air-to-water intercooling system
    • Alternator management
    • ECO start/stop function

    Twin-scroll turbocharger and AMG sports exhaust system with variable vane

    Mercedes-AMG addresses the basic challenge with regard to the throttle response of a small-capacity turbo engine by using a twin-scroll turbocharger, maximum de-throttling of the exhaust system and an innovative injection strategy. Twin-scroll technology provides a more spontaneous build-up of charge pressure: utilization of the exhaust back-pressure, exhaust-gas temperature and exhaust-gas pulse has a positive impact. This results in a faster build-up of torque even at low engine speeds. A positive side-effect: fuel consumption and exhaust emissions also benefit from twin-scroll technology. With a maximum charge pressure of 26psi, the AMG 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbo engine leads the field on this front, too.

    The AMG sports exhaust system in the GLA45 AMG features large pipe cross-sections and an automatically controlled viarable vane: this technology reconciles the two conflicting goals of a dynamic driving experience and hallmark Mercedes suitability for long-distance driving. The vane in the rear muffler is continuously adjusted under map control according to the driver's performance needs, load condition and engine speed. The two rectangular chrome-plated twin tailpipes of the AMG sports exhaust system emit a fascinating exhaust note, which is particularly impressive during powerful acceleration. An AMG Performance exhaust system, also equipped with an exhaust vane, is available as an optional extra. Customers opting for this system will experience an even more appealing and distinctive engine sound.

    Engine production – a tradition of hand-built excellence

    The AMG 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbo engine is assembled purely by hand in accordance with the traditional AMG philosophy of "one man, one engine".

    Apart from serving as an AMG hallmark confirming superlative production quality, the AMG engine badge bearing the engine fitter's signature also attests the peerless DNA of Mercedes-Benz's high-performance brand.

    AMG SPEEDSHIFT DCT 7-speed sports transmission

    The AMG SPEEDSHIFT DCT 7-speed sports transmission in the GLA45 AMG features three distinct transmission modes, a double-declutching function dependent on the transmission mode and a RACE START function for optimum acceleration. The strengths of the dual-clutch transmission include spontaneous gear shifts without loss of tractive power, a tailor-made control strategy based on the AMG SPEEDSHIFT functions, extremely smooth gear shifts, and a high level of efficiency.

    The shift times in manual mode "M" and in sport mode "S" are similarly sporty in character to those of the SLS AMG GT super sports car. Quick and precise retardation of the ignition and suppressing injection under full load lead to even faster gear shifts in "M" and "S" modes, with a more exciting sound. The transmission control fully utilizes the benefits of direct injection technology right up to the physical limits: the quicker engine response ensures that injection is suppressed with even more precision. The effect: the shift speed and an emotional sound experience make for a fascinating ride. Another special feature designed to enhance dynamic performance and driving pleasure is the so-called "Momentary M mode" – as seen in the SLS AMG Coupé Black Series super sports car.

    In "C" mode (Controlled Efficiency), smooth transmission and engine characteristics support a fuel-efficient and comfort-oriented driving style. In addition, the ECO start/stop function is active in "C" mode.

    Performance-oriented AMG 4MATIC four wheel drive as standard

    The GLA45 AMG comes with variable AMG 4MATIC four wheel drive as standard. In developing this four wheel-drive system, the focus was firmly on performance and dynamic spirit. The all-wheel-drive system transfers the engine power to the road optimally and provides perfect traction – regardless of the weather conditions. It also elevates driving dynamics to the highest level.

    The entire drive system boasts a weight-saving and compact design: the power take-off unit (PTU) is fully integrated into the 7-speed sports transmission and handles the power transfer to the rear drivetrain. A two-part propeller shaft sends the power of the engine to the rear axle as well. In the interests of favorable weight distribution, an electro-hydraulically controlled multiple-disc clutch is integral with the rear-axle differential. A hydraulic pump instantaneously presses the discs together and channels the engine torque to the rear wheels as necessary. All this goes unnoticed by the driver. Power distribution is fully variable: during normal driving the GLA45 AMG uses frontwheel drive for optimal efficiency. Where needed, the variable four-wheel-drive system splits the torque between the front and rear axles at a ratio of up to 50:50 percent.

    Typically for AMG, the Electronic Stability Program is configured as a three-stage ESP®. The GLA45 AMG comes with three transmission modes: "ESP ON", "SPORT Handling Mode" and "ESP OFF" – enabling the driver to vary dynamic performance according to individual requirements at the push of a button.

    ESP® Curve Dynamic Assist is likewise included as standard. During dynamic cornering, imperceptible braking interventions on the rear inside wheel create a defined yaw moment about the vertical axis. The effect: the GLA45 AMG turns in precisely and controllably at all times while unwelcome understeer is prevented.

    AMG sports suspension and AMG high-performance braking system

    One of the keys to agile handling is axle technology: for enhanced driving dynamics, the McPherson front axle on the GLA45 AMG is fitted with stiffer steering knuckles and new elastokinematics. The four-link rear axle has also been newly developed. Stability and precision of handling are enhanced by the optimized elastokinematics and the rigid connection between the subframe and the body. The AMG sports suspension with specially tuned spring/damper units and bigger anti-roll bars ensures high lateral acceleration and reduced body roll when driving fast on winding roads. An AMG performance suspension with firmer spring and damper tuning is available as an optional extra.

    The AMG speed-sensitive sports steering with specific, speed-dependent power assist ensures high steering precision and agility. The AMG high-performance braking system with vented, perforated brake discs all-round and gray-painted brake calipers delivers spontaneous and reliable deceleration. Red brake calipers are available as an optional extra.

    Three attractive AMG alloy wheels to choose from

    In standard specification the GLA45 AMG runs on 5-twin-spoke AMG alloy wheels painted titanium gray with high-sheen finish, mounted with tires of size 235/45 R 19. As an optional extra from the AMG Performance Studio, customers can opt for larger 10-spoke AMG alloy wheels with tires of size 235/40 R 20 – these are available painted titanium gray with high-sheen finish or painted matte black with high-sheen rim flange.

    Powerful and distinctive: sensual clarity with AMG character

    The design of the GLA45 AMG exudes fascination on account of its powerful and distinctive character. As the powerful AMG top-of-the-line model of the GLA class, the high-performance SUV combines the hallmark sensual clarity of Mercedes-Benz as an expression of modern luxury with muscular elements exclusive to AMG. The AMG front fascia with front splitter and the AMG "twin blade" radiator grille provide athletic highlights – both are painted matte titanium gray. Completely new: the distinctive AMG lettering at the side between the louvers of the radiator grille. This will make all new AMG models easy to recognize in the future. Black flics (air deflector elements) above the large cooling air intakes at the sides pay homage to motor sport. Bi-xenon headlights come as standard.

    When viewed from the side, the distinctive AMG alloy wheels in three design options certainly catch the eye. The side sill panels with matte titanium gray inserts, the "TURBO AMG" lettering on the front fenders and the aluminum roof rails lend the GLA45 AMG a special touch. The rear end is dominated by the diffuser insert with titanium gray trim and the rectangular, chrome-plated trim of the twin tailpipes of the AMG sports exhaust system with exhaust flap.

    The following AMG equipment features can optionally upgrade the exterior design:

    • Aerodynamics package: larger front splitter, additional flics on the front fascia, rear spoiler, Night package
    • Carbon-fiber exterior mirror housings
    • Exterior Carbon-Fiber package: carbon-fiber front splitter, side sill panel insert and rear fascia trim, with twin blade of the radiator grille in silver chrome
    • Rear spoiler
    • Night package: black anodized waistline trim strip, silver chrome radiator grille louvers; high-gloss black front splitter, exterior mirrors, side sill panel insert and rear fascia trim, two tailpipes with black rectangular trim
    • Red painted brake calipers with black AMG lettering

    Interior design: high-quality, sporty, exclusive

    As in all AMG high-performance automobiles, the interior of the GLA45 AMG delights with its high-quality appeal combined with sporty flair and exclusive equipment features. These include sports seats upholstered with MB-Tex manmade leather/DINAMICA microfiber with red contrasting topstitching and red designo safety belts as well as the AMG DRIVE UNIT. The 3-spoke nappa leather multifunction sports steering wheel with red contrasting topstitching, perforated leather in the grip area and steering-wheel shift paddles ensures perfect vehicle control. The AMG instrument cluster with 2-tube design and central color display, AMG main menu and RACETIMER is on hand to keep the driver up to date. On opening the door, the driver is greeted by the AMG startup screen. The trim of the instrument panel is made from brushed aluminum and, in tandem with the brushed stainless-steel AMG front door sills, emphasizes the high-grade, exclusive ambiance inside the GLA45 AMG.

    The interior can be upgraded with the following AMG optional extras:

    • Performance steering wheel in black nappa leather/Alcantara®
    • Performance seats upholstered in leather or MB-Tex man-made leather/DINAMICA microfiber for driver and front passenger, with more strongly contoured seat shape for enhanced lateral support and with integral head restraints, red designo safety belts
    • Carbon-fiber trim
    • Leather upholstry in black, crystal gray, nut brown or black 'Red Cut' design

    Expressive and exclusive: the GLA45 AMG "Edition 1"

    The GLA45 AMG "Edition 1" is a special option. The expressive arrangement of exclusive exterior and interior details arouses pure fascination. The high-gloss black Aerodynamics package with larger front splitter, additional flics in the front fascia, and rear airfoil creates an uncompromising racetrack feel. The silver gray/red AMG racing stripes on the vehicle sides below the "dropping line" leave a lasting impression. These are complemented by red highlights on radiator grille, exterior mirrors, diffuser insert and rear airfoil. A perfect match to these are the red painted brake calipers and multi-spoke AMG alloy wheels painted matte black with red rim flanges. The alloy wheels feature special

    AMG wheel hub covers with central-lock look, and are mounted with tires of size 235/40 R 20 all-round. The AMG Night package is also part of the standard equipment, as is the "Edition 1" badge on the front fender. The metallic paints cosmos black, polar silver and mountain gray are available as an alternative to the cirrus white exterior paintwork.

    The interior of the GLA45 AMG "Edition 1" is dominated by the colors black and red. Red contrasting topstitching adorns the AMG Performance seats upholstered in MB-Tex man-made leather/DINAMICA microfiber, the door center panels, the upper section of the MB-Tex man-made leather/DINAMICA microfiber instrument panel and the nappa leather/DINAMICA microfiber AMG Performance steering wheel. Other visual highlights are the E-SELECT lever with embossed AMG emblem and the "Edition 1" badge on the AMG DRIVE UNIT. The exclusive trim on the instrument panel perfectly matches the AMG racing stripes on the sides of the vehicle. The high-quality surface has a convincing look and feel: shiny and matte elements create an exciting interplay.

    The new Mercedes-Benz GLA45 AMG will celebrate its world premiere on January 13, 2014 at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, USA. The vehicle will roll into dealerships in the fall of 2014.

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    Interesting, looks way too small for me, but allot of people will like a MB performance CUV in the compact class that is a step up from Buick. Should do well initially.

    I wonder how overpriced it will be? Any pricing range announced yet?

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    Interesting, looks way too small for me, but allot of people will like a MB performance CUV in the compact class that is a step up from Buick. Should do well initially.

    I wonder how overpriced it will be? Any pricing range announced yet?

    No pricing yet, but I would expect it somewhere above the CLA45's pricetag of $47,450

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    I can't imagine the typical buyer wanting this much power in that size of a package.

    Why not? It's like having your own rally car! :AH-HA:

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    True enough, but being an MB they have to have an AMG version... the regular GLA will be the volume model. It is odd to see the AMG badge on a 4 cyl model, though..not really serious enough to be AMG, IMO.

    Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar
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    "typical" small CUV buyers aren't shopping for rally cars.

    With cars like these, fear the apparently anonymous soccer mom, I say! :D

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    lotta power for a 2.0. overstressed?

    I agree, I wonder just how long this engine will really last before having to be replaced. Then most people will probably dump these before 100K sets in and the auto has all the usual buggy breaking down problems that MB's tend to have.

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    I'll bet that 355 HP Turbo 2 Liter would be an easy swap, we'll have to look into that for the 2000 C Sedan, nuk...nuk...nuk...!

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    lotta power for a 2.0. overstressed?

    Probably not (imho) Those Benz 4 bangers are pretty huge engines engineered for the power. Unless you meant 'soccer moms', they're always over-stressed!

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      First images of Holden’s cutting-edge Next Generation Commodore released   Commodore takes technology usually seen only in high-end premium vehicles and brings it to the people Most advanced Commodore ever includes: autonomous emergency braking, adaptive suspension, 360-degree camera, adaptive cruise control and matrix lighting V6 flagship boasts 230kW and 370Nm, world-first ‘Twinster’ all-wheel drive system and 9-speed transmission for the first time ever on a Holden   Next-generation Holden Commodore on sale in 2018  Holden has today revealed first images and more details of the all-new Commodore ahead of its Australian launch early in 2018. The next-gen Commodore takes cutting-edge safety, driving and infotainment technology and makes it available for today’s Australians, everywhere. The next-generation Holden Commodore is democratizing technology.
      Now with images of the next Commodore breaking cover, Australia gets its first look at the sleek and sophisticated design that will be hitting Australian roads in 2018. Designed in Germany by the Opel team with input from GM Holden’s team, the new Commodore takes the best of Europe and makes it great for Australia.
      Building on information released last month regarding the next-generation Commodore, Holden has today confirmed a raft of premium technologies will make Commodore the most technologically-advanced Holden ever. From potentially life-saving safety technology features, to active driving technology and seamless infotainment, the all-new Commodore will make driving safer, easier, more involving and more connected than ever before for Australian customers.
      “Customers are expecting more of their vehicles than ever before,” said Holden’s Executive Director of Sales, Peter Keley. “The all-new 2018 Commodore redefines the level of technology people can expect, and how tech can help our customers be safer, more involved and more connected than ever before. The Commodore combines technology across a number of areas in a way that you would usually only find in high-end prestige vehicles and makes it available for everyday Australians. Combined with the howling V6, world-first all-wheel-drive system and all the on-road performance you expect from the Commodore, this is a car that ticks all the boxes and more,” said Mr Keley.
      Going on sale in Australia early in 2018, the new Commodore range will be headlined by the V6 flagship model, the first ever imported Commodore will honour the iconic nameplate by being the most technologically-advanced Holden ever. With a cutting-edge all-wheel-drive system channeling 230 kilowatts and 370 Newton metres to the road, combined with adaptive suspension technology, a company-first nine-speed automatic transmission and torque-vectoring all-wheel drive, the next-generation Commodore will continue to cement Holden’s reputation for class-leading driving dynamics and on-road refinement.
      Jeremy Tassone, Holden’s Engineering Group Manager for Vehicle Development, said the technical underpinnings of the next Commodore also represents Holden’s commitment to bringing the best vehicles from around the word to Australian customers.
      “From its cutting-edge all-wheel-drive system, to nine-speed transmission and adaptive suspension, this is a true driver’s car in the way Commodore has always been. We’re taking the best of Europe and making it even better for our Australian customers. I can’t wait for our customers to get behind the wheel”
      In addition to the Commodore’s unique all-wheel-drive system, further details surrounding the ‘FlexRide’ suspension system have also been confirmed. The continuously adaptable FlexRide chassis electro-hydraulically adapts the dampers to the road and the driving conditions 500 times per second or 30,000 times per minutes.
      Additionally, the driver can save personal preferences for the steering characteristics, throttle response and dampers via the ‘Sport’ button.
      ‘Standard’: The automatic control selects the best set-up based on the information collected by the vehicle sensors. ‘Tour’: Comfortable chassis configuration, and throttle response for best fuel consumption and most relaxed touring. The right mode for relaxing long-distance drives. ‘Sport’: Brake dive is reduced, flat and responsive chassis control at high speeds and the throttle and steering provide more direct feedback. The new central ‘Drive Mode Control’ software is the heart and soul of the adaptive chassis. It continuously analyses the information provided by the sensors and setting and recognizes the individual driving style. The individual systems are then optimized for the best traction and road position.
      Exterior Design:
      The design of the next Commodore is based on the ‘Monza’ Concept car, created by the Opel Design team in Germany. The prominent front grille and the slim-line headlamps are directly inspired by the Monza Concept enhance the wide horizontal gesture of the front end and provide it with a bold appearance. The grille sits lower than on the outgoing model and further emphasises the solid stance.
      The side window graphics feature with an upper chrome strip, rather than a full-chrome treatment, and the coupé-like roofline graphically pull the car down and emphasize its stretched appearance. The ‘blade’ light catcher in the lower doors pulls attention rearwards. The new Commodore is as sleek as it looks: it has an exemplary drag factor of 0.26 making it one of the most aerodynamic vehicles in its class.
      At the rear, clear and simple lines combined with the slim, precise double-wing LED signature also give the car a wider appearance. The newly designed center high-mounted LED stop lamp has been integrated into the roofline. It helps to give the rear end a more high-tech look typical of premium brands’ vehicles.
      Interior Design: 
      The attention to the smallest detail is also evident inside the Commodore. The cockpit is organized along horizontal lines, enhancing the feeling of elegant lightness and of space. The cockpit is orientated to the driver for a sportier feeling. The generous center console that further embraces the driver provides the feeling of sitting in a much larger class of vehicle. Clean lines, modern surfaces and first-class craftsmanship with soft-feel materials at all touch points contribute to a feeling of elegance and grace.
      Infotainment system design:
      Equal attention has been paid to the controls and the infotainment interface. The frameless touchscreen of the infotainment system exudes a sophisticated and technical charm. Many functions are controlled via the touchscreen in order to simplify the interface, while three clusters of buttons have been designed to allow quick and intuitive operations: the upper ones for the major functions of the infotainment system, the central ones for climate and heating controls, the lower ones for driver assistant controls. This very clear set-up avoids drivers and passengers having to dive into sub-menus on the touchscreen to find the most essential functions.
      NEXT-GENERATION COMMODORE KEY HIGHLIGHTS:
      Cutting-edge driver assistance systems and technology: Autonomous Emergency Braking Adaptive Cruise Control Speed Limit Cruise Control Lane Departure Warning Lane Keep Assist Forward Collision Alert Side Blind-Zone Alert Rear Cross-Traffic Alert 360-degree Camera Next-generation comfort and convenience technologies: Massage Seats Rear one-touch folding seats Heated Front and Rear seats Ventilated Front seats Express up/down all windows Wagon power lift-gate Active Noise Cancellation Program overview: 
      Next-generation Commodore built in Germany on all-new, global E2 architecture shared with Opel Insignia Lightweight construction methods result in approximately 200kg weight savings compared to current Commodore Flagship model offers V6 AWD drivetrain with Holden-first 9-speed transmission V6 engine delivers 230kW / 370Nm while being incredibly efficient thanks to Stop-Start technology and Active Fuel Management 2.0T petrol and 2.0T diesel front-wheel drive models also coming to Australia Liftback and Sportwagon body-styles Cutting-edge, adaptive all-wheel-drive system with torque vectoring and twin-clutch (‘Twinster’) rear differential system Adaptive ‘Flexride’ suspension system offers three settings: ‘Tour’, ‘Standard’ and ‘Sport’  Next-generation matrix lighting system Infotainment includes: Apple Car Play and Android Auto 8-inch configurable LCD instrument display, next-gen head-up display Previous Page Next Page
      View full article
    • By William Maley
      Previous Page Next Page Just a day after a set of spy shots revealed the next-generation Opel and Vauxhall Insignia, Vauxhall has unveiled the 2017 Insignia Grand Sport. Meanwhile, Holden has pulled the wraps of the 2018 Commodore.
      The Insignia/Commodore borrows a lot of cues from the 2013 Monza concept with a lowered grille, distinct sculpting along the side, and shorter overhangs. This new shape is more aerodynamic with a drag coefficient of 0.26. Even though the new Insignia is the same length as the outgoing model, the new one has a wheelbase that has been stretched 3.6 inches for added legroom. Other measurements to be aware of include,
      Track increased by 0.4 inches Roof lowered by 1.1 inches New Insignia weighs 132 pounds less than the outgoing model As for the Commodore, the measurements to be aware of are,
      2.9 inches shorter in overall length Wheelbase is 3.4 inches shorter 1.4 inches narrower in width There is a lot of inspiration from the smaller Astra when it comes to the interior. Both models feature a similar dash design and a large touchscreen. The feature list includes heated front and rear seats, a massaging function for the front seats, heads-up display, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration.
      There is no mention of engines for the Insignia, but we're assuming there will be a range of diesel and gas engines - a fair majority of them being turbocharged. Some engines will feature a new eight-speed automatic transmission. As for the Commodore, Holden has revealed that it will come with 2.0L turbo engines running gas or diesel, and a 3.6L V6. There is also a new all-wheel drive system that features with two electrically-controlled multi-plate clutches taking the place of the rear differential. This will also bring torque vectoring to the models. Both models will come with am adaptive FlexRide chassis that offers a number of modes.
      Vauxhall says the Insignia Grand Sport will debut in March at the Geneva Motor Show, while the Holden Commodore will go on sale in early 2018. This leads us to believe that Buick will likely reveal the 2018 Regal at the New York Auto Show.
       
      Source: Vauxhall, Holden
      Press Release is on Page 2
      VAUXHALL REVEALS ALL-NEW INSIGNIA
      Elegant lines with class-leading aerodynamics and large coupé style Up to 175kg lighter than the outgoing version New all-wheel-drive with torque vectoring and eight-speed automatic transmission New technologies including next-gen IntelliLux Matrix LED headlights Extended OnStar service with hotel reservation Luton – Vauxhall has released first pictures of the all-new Insignia, known as the Insignia Grand Sport, which will receive its world premiere at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show in March.
      Following on from the previous generation, which won the European Car of the Year in 2009, and sold over 30,000 in the UK last year, the Insignia Grand Sport is based on a completely new vehicle architecture. Its revised proportions result in a more spacious interior, giving the car a more athletic appearance and an improved road stance, including class-leading aerodynamics and Cd figure of just 0.26.
      Like with the Astra, efficiency was key for the engineers. Optimised packaging and the use of lightweight materials have helped cut the weight by up to 175kg, allowing high-tech features such as the ultra-modern all-wheel-drive system with torque vectoring and the new eight-speed automatic transmission to exploit their strengths to the full.
      There is a raft of top technologies that make driving the Insignia Grand Sport safer, more relaxing and more comfortable than before. Next generation IntelliLux LED matrix lighting, Lane Keep Assist, Head-up Display and unique AGR-certified premium seats, front- and rear-seat heating and a heated windshield are just some examples.
      Outstanding infotainment and connectivity are also on board thanks to the latest generation IntelliLink systems and Vauxhall OnStar, which with the launch of the Insignia Grand Sport, will offer even more functionality for customers.
      It is also the first Vauxhall with an active aluminium bonnet, improving pedestrian protection considerably.
      “Vauxhall is raising its game even further with the launch of the new Insignia Grand Sport,” said Rory Harvey, Vauxhall’s Chairman and Managing Director. ““It has all of the virtues of its successful smaller brother the Astra, and takes those to a higher level. The Insignia Grand Sport will set new standards for design, efficiency, technology and connectivity when it debuts next year at the Geneva Motor Show.”
      DESIGN
      The Monza Concept was the inspiration behind the interior and exterior design.
      Despite a largely unchanged length compared to its predecessor, the new generation car has managed to shed around 60kg of weight from its body-in-white alone. In total, the new car weighs up to 175kg less than the outgoing model.
      Its roof is 29mm lower and its track has increased by 11mm. The overhangs have been reduced considerably and the wheelbase enlarged by 92mm.
      The prominent grille and the slim-line headlamps enhance the wide horizontal design of the front end and provide it with a bold appearance. The grille sits lower than on the outgoing model and further emphasises its solid stance. What Vauxhall calls a “sweepspear” feature starts in the front door and gives the impression that the Insignia Grand Sport is always ready to pounce, which is another nod to the athletic lightness of the Monza Concept.
      The side window graphics feature an upper chrome strip, rather than a full-chrome treatment, and the coupé-like roofline graphically pulls the car down and emphasises its stretched appearance. The “blade” light catcher in the lower doors pulls attention rearwards. Clear and simple lines at the rear combined with the double-wing LED signature also give the car a wider appearance. The newly-designed high-mounted LED stop lamp has been integrated into the roofline. It helps to give the rear end of the Insignia Grand Sport a more high-tech look that is often found on premium brands. A further advantage of this sporty body design is that the newcomer has an exemplary drag factor of 0.26 making it one of the most aerodynamic vehicles in its class.
      “In its proportions as well as in each detail, we wanted the new Insignia Grand Sport to deliver an upscale quality feel,” said Brit Mark Adams, Vauxhall/Opel Vice President Design Europe. “Its design combines flowing lines and subtle surfaces with crisp, precise lines to exaggerate its dramatic proportions: it looks longer, lower and wider than it actually is, and it definitely looks upscale. Every design feature conveys technical know-how and the utmost precision. The new Insignia Grand Sport is an excellent value proposition with the aura of a car from the premium, upper class.”
      The attention to the smallest detail is also tangible inside the vehicle. Clean lines, pleasant surfaces and first-class craftsmanship also provide a feeling of elegance and lightness. The cockpit is fully aligned to the driver who sits 3cm lower than previously. In addition, the driver is integrated better and gets a completely new driving experience. The centre console provides additional support, the instruments face the driver and all controls can easily be reached. All this results in a position similar to the one provided in a competition touring car. The frameless touchscreen of the IntelliLink infotainment system exudes a sophisticated and technical charm. Furthermore, the system is much more intuitive to use than before. Apart from the driver, all other occupants of the Grand Sport also benefit from the new design and the reworked proportions of the car. The extended wheelbase gives passengers in the rear more space.
      PROPULSION TECHNOLOGY
      The Insignia Grand Sport will be available with a wide range of turbocharged engines and transmissions when it is officially launched next year. The highly efficient eight-speed automatic transmission is new to the line-up. It impresses with class-leading shift quality. The gear ratios have been extended and shifts are extremely smooth and hardly noticeable. Simultaneously the car accelerates eagerly – even at low engine speeds. The eight-speed automatic transmission, which will initially only be available in combination with all-wheel drive, is friction-optimised and improves efficiency.
      New intelligent all-wheel drive
      Two electrically controlled multi-plate clutches replace the rear axle differential. For the first time, it will provide an all-wheel drive Vauxhall with torque vectoring – the best way to transmit power to the road, even if it is wet, icy or snowy. The vehicle receives steering impulses via the active, controlled torque distribution to the individual wheel. For example, when cornering, additional torque is transmitted to the outside rear wheel, enabling the Insignia Grand Sport to corner more precisely. The system reacts within a split-second when the accelerator is pressed, keeping the car more stable and easier to control in every situation.
      The further improved FlexRide chassis provides the basis for optimal, situation-based driving behaviour. It adapts the dampers, steering, throttle response and shift points (on automatics) independently or based on the modes ‘Standard’, ‘Sport’ or ‘Tour’, which can be selected by the driver. Depending on the selected mode, steering and throttle response are more direct and the ESP anti-skid system intervenes earlier or later. The new central ‘Drive Mode Control’ software is the heart and soul of the adaptive chassis. It continuously analyses the information provided by the sensors and settings and recognises the individual driving style.
      DRIVING ASSISTANCE SYSTEMS
      No other model in the segment offers such a wide range of intelligent technologies as the new edition of the Vauxhall flagship.
      One of the highlights is the next generation of Vauxhall’s innovative and award-winning IntelliLux LED matrix light. It now has 32 LED segments – twice as many as in the Astra – that are all integrated in the new slimmer headlamps of the Insignia. The increased number of LED elements enables the various light patterns to adapt to the prevailing traffic situation even more precisely and the transitions between the modes are more seamless. This results in an improvement of both the quality of light distribution and light intensity. To improve visibility even further while driving through curves on full high beam, the engineers added a new function to the new Insignia’s IntelliLux LED matrix headlights. The light intensity at the inner matrix segments rises according to steering angle in order to increase the illumination of the curve. In addition, a further high-beam spotlight provides additional illumination at full high-beam for up to 400 meters.
      Additional driver assistance systems include:
      Head-up-Display: Information on speed, traffic signs, set speed of speed limiter or navigation direction is projected onto the windscreen and in the driver’s direct line of sight ensuring that the eyes remain on the road. Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), which measures the distance to vehicle in front and adapts the speed accordingly. ACC will initiate automatic emergency braking if the distance decreases abruptly. Lane Keep Assist with Lane Departure Warning. Provides gentle steering wheel movements (and LDW alerts if necessary) to help drivers avoid accidents due to unintentionally drifting out of their lane. Rear Cross Traffic Alert. The system uses radar sensors in the rear bumper to detect objects coming from up to 20 meters at 90 degrees from the left or right side behind the vehicle. COMFORT AND INFOTAINMENT
      Vauxhall is still one of the few manufacturers to offer seats certified by “Aktion Gesunder Rücken” (Campaign for Healthy Backs). The premium ergonomic seats in the Insignia offer a unique combination of side bolster settings, massage, memory and ventilation functions in addition to the standard setting possibilities. Passenger in the rear can also look forward to more comfort with the two outside seats being available with optional seat heating. Elsewhere, the heated windscreen guarantees good visibility quickly on cold winter days. In addition, keyless “Open & Start” comes as standard on all trim levels and enables comfortable access to the vehicle.
      Great entertainment and outstanding connectivity, both typical for Vauxhall, are provided by the latest Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatible IntelliLink systems. And while the smartphone is seamlessly integrated into the vehicle’s infotainment it can also be charged wirelessly without the use of a cable. The ground-breaking connectivity and service assistant Vauxhall OnStar is also on board, offering services ranging from Automatic Crash Response to Stolen Vehicle Assistance. A new concierge service will be launched together with the Insignia Grand Sport, enabling its occupants to ask OnStar advisors to select a hotel and proceed to room reservation. Furthermore, up to seven devices can be connected to the Wi-Fi Hotspot.
      Next-Generation Holden Commodore Breaks Cover – Brings Premium Technology To The People
      First images of Holden’s cutting-edge Next Generation Commodore released   Commodore takes technology usually seen only in high-end premium vehicles and brings it to the people Most advanced Commodore ever includes: autonomous emergency braking, adaptive suspension, 360-degree camera, adaptive cruise control and matrix lighting V6 flagship boasts 230kW and 370Nm, world-first ‘Twinster’ all-wheel drive system and 9-speed transmission for the first time ever on a Holden   Next-generation Holden Commodore on sale in 2018  Holden has today revealed first images and more details of the all-new Commodore ahead of its Australian launch early in 2018. The next-gen Commodore takes cutting-edge safety, driving and infotainment technology and makes it available for today’s Australians, everywhere. The next-generation Holden Commodore is democratizing technology.
      Now with images of the next Commodore breaking cover, Australia gets its first look at the sleek and sophisticated design that will be hitting Australian roads in 2018. Designed in Germany by the Opel team with input from GM Holden’s team, the new Commodore takes the best of Europe and makes it great for Australia.
      Building on information released last month regarding the next-generation Commodore, Holden has today confirmed a raft of premium technologies will make Commodore the most technologically-advanced Holden ever. From potentially life-saving safety technology features, to active driving technology and seamless infotainment, the all-new Commodore will make driving safer, easier, more involving and more connected than ever before for Australian customers.
      “Customers are expecting more of their vehicles than ever before,” said Holden’s Executive Director of Sales, Peter Keley. “The all-new 2018 Commodore redefines the level of technology people can expect, and how tech can help our customers be safer, more involved and more connected than ever before. The Commodore combines technology across a number of areas in a way that you would usually only find in high-end prestige vehicles and makes it available for everyday Australians. Combined with the howling V6, world-first all-wheel-drive system and all the on-road performance you expect from the Commodore, this is a car that ticks all the boxes and more,” said Mr Keley.
      Going on sale in Australia early in 2018, the new Commodore range will be headlined by the V6 flagship model, the first ever imported Commodore will honour the iconic nameplate by being the most technologically-advanced Holden ever. With a cutting-edge all-wheel-drive system channeling 230 kilowatts and 370 Newton metres to the road, combined with adaptive suspension technology, a company-first nine-speed automatic transmission and torque-vectoring all-wheel drive, the next-generation Commodore will continue to cement Holden’s reputation for class-leading driving dynamics and on-road refinement.
      Jeremy Tassone, Holden’s Engineering Group Manager for Vehicle Development, said the technical underpinnings of the next Commodore also represents Holden’s commitment to bringing the best vehicles from around the word to Australian customers.
      “From its cutting-edge all-wheel-drive system, to nine-speed transmission and adaptive suspension, this is a true driver’s car in the way Commodore has always been. We’re taking the best of Europe and making it even better for our Australian customers. I can’t wait for our customers to get behind the wheel”
      In addition to the Commodore’s unique all-wheel-drive system, further details surrounding the ‘FlexRide’ suspension system have also been confirmed. The continuously adaptable FlexRide chassis electro-hydraulically adapts the dampers to the road and the driving conditions 500 times per second or 30,000 times per minutes.
      Additionally, the driver can save personal preferences for the steering characteristics, throttle response and dampers via the ‘Sport’ button.
      ‘Standard’: The automatic control selects the best set-up based on the information collected by the vehicle sensors. ‘Tour’: Comfortable chassis configuration, and throttle response for best fuel consumption and most relaxed touring. The right mode for relaxing long-distance drives. ‘Sport’: Brake dive is reduced, flat and responsive chassis control at high speeds and the throttle and steering provide more direct feedback. The new central ‘Drive Mode Control’ software is the heart and soul of the adaptive chassis. It continuously analyses the information provided by the sensors and setting and recognizes the individual driving style. The individual systems are then optimized for the best traction and road position.
      Exterior Design:
      The design of the next Commodore is based on the ‘Monza’ Concept car, created by the Opel Design team in Germany. The prominent front grille and the slim-line headlamps are directly inspired by the Monza Concept enhance the wide horizontal gesture of the front end and provide it with a bold appearance. The grille sits lower than on the outgoing model and further emphasises the solid stance.
      The side window graphics feature with an upper chrome strip, rather than a full-chrome treatment, and the coupé-like roofline graphically pull the car down and emphasize its stretched appearance. The ‘blade’ light catcher in the lower doors pulls attention rearwards. The new Commodore is as sleek as it looks: it has an exemplary drag factor of 0.26 making it one of the most aerodynamic vehicles in its class.
      At the rear, clear and simple lines combined with the slim, precise double-wing LED signature also give the car a wider appearance. The newly designed center high-mounted LED stop lamp has been integrated into the roofline. It helps to give the rear end a more high-tech look typical of premium brands’ vehicles.
      Interior Design: 
      The attention to the smallest detail is also evident inside the Commodore. The cockpit is organized along horizontal lines, enhancing the feeling of elegant lightness and of space. The cockpit is orientated to the driver for a sportier feeling. The generous center console that further embraces the driver provides the feeling of sitting in a much larger class of vehicle. Clean lines, modern surfaces and first-class craftsmanship with soft-feel materials at all touch points contribute to a feeling of elegance and grace.
      Infotainment system design:
      Equal attention has been paid to the controls and the infotainment interface. The frameless touchscreen of the infotainment system exudes a sophisticated and technical charm. Many functions are controlled via the touchscreen in order to simplify the interface, while three clusters of buttons have been designed to allow quick and intuitive operations: the upper ones for the major functions of the infotainment system, the central ones for climate and heating controls, the lower ones for driver assistant controls. This very clear set-up avoids drivers and passengers having to dive into sub-menus on the touchscreen to find the most essential functions.
      NEXT-GENERATION COMMODORE KEY HIGHLIGHTS:
      Cutting-edge driver assistance systems and technology: Autonomous Emergency Braking Adaptive Cruise Control Speed Limit Cruise Control Lane Departure Warning Lane Keep Assist Forward Collision Alert Side Blind-Zone Alert Rear Cross-Traffic Alert 360-degree Camera Next-generation comfort and convenience technologies: Massage Seats Rear one-touch folding seats Heated Front and Rear seats Ventilated Front seats Express up/down all windows Wagon power lift-gate Active Noise Cancellation Program overview: 
      Next-generation Commodore built in Germany on all-new, global E2 architecture shared with Opel Insignia Lightweight construction methods result in approximately 200kg weight savings compared to current Commodore Flagship model offers V6 AWD drivetrain with Holden-first 9-speed transmission V6 engine delivers 230kW / 370Nm while being incredibly efficient thanks to Stop-Start technology and Active Fuel Management 2.0T petrol and 2.0T diesel front-wheel drive models also coming to Australia Liftback and Sportwagon body-styles Cutting-edge, adaptive all-wheel-drive system with torque vectoring and twin-clutch (‘Twinster’) rear differential system Adaptive ‘Flexride’ suspension system offers three settings: ‘Tour’, ‘Standard’ and ‘Sport’  Next-generation matrix lighting system Infotainment includes: Apple Car Play and Android Auto 8-inch configurable LCD instrument display, next-gen head-up display Previous Page Next Page
    • By William Maley
      Automakers go to great lengths to avoid being hit with the 25 percent chicken tax when they import trucks or vans into the U.S. Mercedes-Benz takes the cake for the most absurd method.
      For the past decade, Mercedes-Benz would build Sprinter vans fully in Germany before disassembling them and shipping the pieces to South Carolina. Workers in a small assembly building would put the vans back together. This method allowed Mercedes-Benz to claim the vans as "locally made".
      "I really couldn't believe it. To build up and tear down, that's really something that hurts me, personally. And the costs!" said Volker Mornhinweg, worldwide head of Mercedes-Benz Vans.
      Mornhinweg first learned about this back in 2010 and like us, found himself wondering 'WHY?!' Thankfully, Mornhinweg began working on making this process not seem like Rube Goldberg machine which will fully culminate with a new assembly plant in South Carolina that will be tasked with building the next-generation Sprinter, most likely in 2018.
      Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) 

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      Automakers go to great lengths to avoid being hit with the 25 percent chicken tax when they import trucks or vans into the U.S. Mercedes-Benz takes the cake for the most absurd method.
      For the past decade, Mercedes-Benz would build Sprinter vans fully in Germany before disassembling them and shipping the pieces to South Carolina. Workers in a small assembly building would put the vans back together. This method allowed Mercedes-Benz to claim the vans as "locally made".
      "I really couldn't believe it. To build up and tear down, that's really something that hurts me, personally. And the costs!" said Volker Mornhinweg, worldwide head of Mercedes-Benz Vans.
      Mornhinweg first learned about this back in 2010 and like us, found himself wondering 'WHY?!' Thankfully, Mornhinweg began working on making this process not seem like Rube Goldberg machine which will fully culminate with a new assembly plant in South Carolina that will be tasked with building the next-generation Sprinter, most likely in 2018.
      Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) 
    • By William Maley
      Mercedes-Benz Reports November Sales Of 30,363 Units, Up 1.1%
      ATLANTA, Dec. 1, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Mercedes-Benz USA (MBUSA) today reported November sales of 30,363 vehicles, increasing 1.1% from the 30,043 vehicles sold during the same month last year. Mercedes-Benz Vans also reported November sales with 2,564 units, and smart reported 563 units, bringing MBUSA grand total to 33,490 vehicles for the month. On a year-to-date basis, Mercedes-Benz retails totaled 308,226. Adding year-to-date-sales of 30,444 for Vans and 5,025 for smart, MBUSA posted a grand total of 343,695 units in November, increasing 0.6% from the previous year.
      "As we begin the last month of 2016, November momentum positions us for a strong close to the year," said Dietmar Exler, president and CEO of MBUSA.
      Mercedes-Benz volume leaders in November included the C-Class, GLE and E-Class (including the CLS) model lines. The C-Class took the lead at 7,261, followed by the GLE at 4,694. The E-Class, rounded out the top three with 4,642 units sold.
      Mercedes-AMG high-performance models sold 2,590 units in November, with a total of 20,135  units sold year-to-date (up 37.4%).
      Separately, Mercedes-Benz Certified Pre-Owned (MBCPO) models recorded sales of 10,091 vehicles in November, an increase of 7.1% from last year (9,422). On a year-to-date basis, MBCPO sold 112,347 vehicles, an increase of 3.3%.
      MERCEDES-BENZ USA 
      Sales -- November 2016
      Mercedes-Benz
      Passenger Vehicles
      Nov-16
      Nov-15
      Monthly %
      YTD 2016
      YTD 2015
      Yearly %
                    B-CLASS
      52
      41
      26.8%
      578
      1,809
      -68.0%
                    CLA
      2,070
      2,611
      -20.7%
      23,916
      27,731
      -13.8%
                    C-CLASS
      7,261
      7,239
      0.3%
      69,822
      79,057
      -11.7%
                    E-CLASS/CLS
      4,642
      5,205
      -10.8%
      46,045
      50,308
      -8.5%
                    S-CLASS
      1,475
      1,856
      -20.5%
      17,309
      19,825
      -12.7%
                    SLC/SLK
      270
      239
      13.0%
      3,067
      3,892
      -21.2%
                    SL
      273
      296
      -7.8%
      3,418
      3,680
      -7.1%
                    AMG GT
      89
      118
      -24.6%
      1,128
      1,115
      1.2%
                    *SLS AMG
      0
      1
      -
      1
      29
      -
                    GLA
      2,227
      2,721
      -18.2%
      22,194
      23,393
      -5.1%
                    GLC/GLK
      3,876
      1,216
      218.8%
      43,854
      23,536
      86.3%
                    GLE/M-CLASS
      4,694
      5,250
      -10.6%
      46,217
      46,577
      -0.8%
                    GL/GLS
      3,108
      2,916
      6.6%
      27,180
      24,858
      9.3%
                    G-CLASS 
      326
      334
      -2.4%
      3,497
      3,075
      13.7%
                    TOTAL
      30,363
      30,043
      1.1%
      308,226
      308,885
      -0.2%
                    Vans1
      2,564
      2,770
      -7.4%
      30,444
      25,843
      17.8%
                    smart
      563
      662
      -15.0%
      5,025
      6,815
      -26.3%
                    MBUSA
      Combined Total
      Nov-16
      Nov-15
      Monthly %
      YTD 2016
      YTD 2015
      Yearly %
                    GRAND TOTAL
      33,490
      33,475
      0.0%
      343,695
      341,543
      0.6%

      1Mercedes-Benz, Freightliner Sprinter and Metris Vans are sold and marketed in the U.S. by Mercedes-Benz USA and Daimler Vans USA, respectively.

      *out of production
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