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    Drew Dowdell

    2017 Los Angeles Auto Show Wrap Up - Luxury Crossovers and SUVs

      Recapping the luxury crossovers and SUVs from the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show


    Luxury crossovers and SUVs were a dominant feature at the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show.  Here is a recap of the releases from the show.

    2018 Lexus RX-L

    2018 Lexus RX-L-2-Smaller.jpg

    The Details: Lexus has been the leader in the mid-size luxury crossover segment since it was birthed. Where Lexus missed was in offering a 3-row version of their hot seller.  Surprisingly belatedly, Lexus finally came through by extending the RX 4.3 inches and updating the roofline to stuff a 3rd row in the back.  Powertrain carries over from the standard RX with a 290 hp V6 standard for the RX 350L and the 308 hp Hybrid available only on the RX 450hL.

    Why it Matters: It is surprising that Lexus took this long to add a commonly sought after option in this segment.  Ten years ago, this would have been bigger news, but with the industry pivoting towards smaller crossovers, I expect response to be mutted.  The RX does two things, it gives Lexus an entry into the 3-row segment at minimal development and marketing costs, and it puts Lexus in the same league with BMW for absurd model trim names.  Click here for more information on the 2018 Lexus RX-L

    Competitors: Volvo XC90, Infiniti QX60, Acura MDX, Buick Enclave, Lincoln MKX/Nautilus

    2018 Lexus LX 570 Two-Row

    2018_Lexus_LX_570_Two_Row.jpg

    The Details: The Lexus version of the Toyota Land Cruiser drops the third-row seats in favor of a larger cargo area. Two-row option only comes in a single trim level

    Why it Matters: It really doesn’t unless you’re a wealthy DINK with no friends.  As far as vehicle platforms go, the LX and Land Cruiser are ancient, debuting back in 2007. Already on its fourth remodel since arriving, we don’t see much life left.  Lexus only sells about 600 LXs per month.

    Competitors: Cadillac Escalade, Lincoln Navigator, Mercedes-Benz GLS, Audi Q7, Infiniti QX80 (all come with 3-rows)

    Up Next: Lincoln Nautilus and Lincoln MKC


    2019 Lincoln Nautilus

    2019 Lincoln Nautilus-1-smaller.jpg

    The Details: The Nautilus is a refreshed Lincoln MKX, but the most refreshing part about it is the return to a real name.  Power changes include a switch to an all turbocharged engine lineup. Base engine is a 2.3 liter turbocharged 4-cylinder producing 245 horsepower, optional is a 2.7 liter V6 with 335 horsepower and 380 lb-ft of torque.  Both engines are coupled to a front-wheel drive 8-speed automatic with all-wheel drive standard. Automatic stop/start is standard.

    Why it Matters: The MKX was already an excellent entry in the segment. While overall dimensions are unchanged, the Nautilus looks longer and sleeker than its MKX predecessor. Bringing the MKX up to date with the new Lincoln look was essential, but going back to a real name shows that Lincoln is ready to carve out a firm identity for itself. Click Here for more information on the 2019 Lincoln Nautilus

    Competitors: Lexus RX, Audi Q5, Cadillac XT5, Mercedes-Benz GLE, Acura MDX

    2019 Lincoln MKC

    2019 Lincoln MKC-1-smaller.jpg

    The Details: MKC moves to the new Lincoln look, but product planners didn’t come up with a name in time. Aside from that, the interior and mechanical features carry over.

    Why it Matters: This one is a head scratcher. I can only think that for some reason Lincoln didn’t think there were enough changes to the MKC to warrant a name change. People are inherently visual though, so even if there wasn’t an engine change under the hood, the visual change is distinctive enough that now is probably time to do a name change like the Lincoln Nautilus.  The MKC sells well, and with this handsome new update, I expect it to do even better. Click here for more information on the 2019 Lincoln MKC

    Next Up: Infiniti QX50 and QX80



     

    2019 Infiniti QX50

    2019 Infiniti QX50-2-smaller.jpg

    The Details: Infiniti finally replaces the old G37 based QX50, but that necessitates a move to front-wheel drive. The QX50 is the launch platform for Infiniti’s revolutionary new engine that is capable of a variable compression ratio.  The new 2.0T with VC can change the compression ratio from 8:1 to 14:1.

    Why it Matters: I’ll be sad to see the old QX50 go. In spite of its aging platform and interior electronics, it had a butter smoothness and great handling. It never really got a foothold in the market. But auto enthusiast feelings aside, this new QX50 is likely to be the bread and butter of Infiniti’s lineup for the foreseeable future.  It hits right in the bullseye of the compact luxury crossover market and does so with a compelling performance argument and a fantastic looking interior. Click here for more information on the 2019 Infiniti QX50

    Competitors: Lincoln MKC, Mercedes-Benz GLC, Acura RDX, Lexus NX, Audi Q3, Land Rover Evoque, Jaguar E-Pace

    2018 Infiniti QX80

    2018 Infiniti QX80-2-smaller.jpg

    The Details: QX80 gets an updated front clip and a massaged interior

    Why it Matters: Like the Lexus LX650, the QX80 rides on an older platform from a mass-market brand, in this case, the 2010 Nissan Patrol.  The 2017 Armada had a face only a mother could love, but with the update for 2018 it has grown substantially more handsome. The interior has been coiffed with attractive new quilted and stitched leather, though technology has not been updated to include the likes of Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.  Mechanically, the QX80 still uses the old 5.6 liter V8 producing 400 horsepower / 417 lb-ft of torque routed through a 7-speed automatic.  Fuel economy is a 1997 like 15 mpg combined.

    Competitors: Lexus LX560, Cadillac Escalade, Lincoln Navigator, Mercedes-Benz GLS, Audi Q7

     

    Next Up: Volvo XC40 and Land Rover Range Rover SVAutobiography


    2018 Volvo XC40

    2018 Volvo XC40-1-Smaller.jpg

    The Details: The XC40 is the first vehicle on Volvo’s new CMA platform.  It features a 248 hp 2 liter turbo four cylinder routing through an 8-speed automatic to all four wheels. People familiar with the controls from Volvo’s larger SPA platform vehicles like XC90 and S80 will feel right at home as most of touchy stuff is lifted straight from them. You will also be able to subscribe to the XC40 rather than buy or lease.  Basically a 15,000 mile a year lease that includes all maintenance and insurance.

    Why it Matters: Another entry straight at the heart of the compact luxury crossover market. The recent Volvos have been a hit and I expect this one to be as well. The floor display had a few questionable interior materials and some visible exterior manufacturing defects, so I hope those get sorted soon as these XC40s are rolling down the manufacturing line already. Volvo’s policy of electrifying every vehicle that make means that a plug-in hybrid version of the XC40 is coming, however the Volvo rep I spoke to refused to confirm.  Volvo’s subscription idea is intriguing and it will be interesting to see if it takes off. Click here for more information on the 2018 Volvo XC40

    2018 Range Rover SVAutobiography

    2018 Range Rover SVAutobiography-2-smaller.jpg

    The Details: An Ultra-Luxury Range Rover

    Why it Matters:  Are you a Russian Oil Tycoon or an NBA star?  If so, then it matters.  If not, just look at it and dream from behind the velvet ropes while the booth attendants sneer at you. It has power close rear doors, executive seating, and a new infotainment system. There is a hidden refrigerator in between the rear seats that holds two wine bottles plus two glasses and opens with the touch of a button. The closest competitor I can think of isn't an SUV at all, but the S-Class Maybach.  This is Land Rover's interpretation of the segment. 

    Competitors: Mercedes Benz GLS550 Designo, Bentley Bentaga, S-Class Maybach

     

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     I can only think that for some reason Lincoln didn’t think there were enough changes to the MKC to warrant a name change

     

    I forget where I read this, but a Lincoln executive said that was the key reason as to why the MKC didn't get a name change.

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    The Lexus SUVs really have me scratching my head! :scratchchin: Stretch a mid size CUV for a 3rd seat that really is only good for little kids and then remove the 3rd row from your full size SUV that is more inline with the competition.

    What are they thinking as it just does not make sense.

    It leaves me thinking that someone at Lexus is a car fan only and really only cares about the CUV/SUV cause they have to have something in that category but does not want to spend time or investment in it. Very out of touch thinking as Toyota / Lexus is already playing catchup to the rest of the industry for EV/Hybrids. Why miss out on the way the market has changed away from cars?

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    5 minutes ago, dfelt said:

    The Lexus SUVs really have me scratching my head! :scratchchin: Stretch a mid size CUV for a 3rd seat that really is only good for little kids and then remove the 3rd row from your full size SUV that is more inline with the competition.

    What are they thinking as it just does not make sense.b

    Makes sense to me, Toyota uses the same 3 row formula with the Highlander, which is on the same platform and wheelbase.  So I'm not surprised it's this way.   They have the GX and LX for the full-size market. 

    Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar
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    14 minutes ago, William Maley said:

    I forget where I read this, but a Lincoln executive said that was the key reason as to why the MKC didn't get a name change.

    Yeah, I really think that it was enough of a visual update that they should have done it.   The Nautilus is not that different from the MKX on the touchy feely stuff that it deserved a new name and the MKC didn't. 

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    2 minutes ago, Cubical-aka-Moltar said:

    Makes sense to me, Toyota uses the same 3 row formula with the Highlander, which is on the same platform and wheelbase.  So I'm not surprised it's this way.   They have the GX and LX for the full-size market. 

    Guess I have not looked close enough at the Highlander, so it has the same 3rd row kiddy seats?

    Full size SUV, just have the 3rd seat as a Delete option like GM and Ford does with their full size. I bet more than less still want it.

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    4 minutes ago, dfelt said:

    Guess I have not looked close enough at the Highlander, so it has the same 3rd row kiddy seats?

    Full size SUV, just have the 3rd seat as a Delete option like GM and Ford does with their full size. I bet more than less still want it.

    The Highlander is a midsize CUV w/ 3 rows available.. Ford does it also on the Explorer.  Different market niche than full size.  I assume Cadillac will get in the game sooner or later with a 3 row XT5 (or an XT7?).

    Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar
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    33 minutes ago, Drew Dowdell said:

    The 3rd-row delete on the LX doesn't make sense to me. They don't sell enough of them for it to matter much. 

    So are you saying it should have the 3rd seat or since they do not sell many LX, if the market questions show the 3rd seat was not a big deal for selling the LX, dropping it is just a way for increased profits for Lexus. 

    Just trying to understand where you stand on the 3rd row seat.

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    I can't imagine people are buying LXes as a family hauler...makes sense to go 2 row only; the Range Rover is, isn't it?  Leave the 3rd row to the family haulers, otherwise it's a waste of space...

    Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar
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    2 hours ago, Cubical-aka-Moltar said:

    I can't imagine people are buying LXes as a family hauler...makes sense to go 2 row only; the Range Rover is, isn't it?  Leave the 3rd row to the family haulers, otherwise it's a waste of space...

    I thought the Range Rover offered those jump seats that fold up on both sides of the back area.

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    2 hours ago, Cubical-aka-Moltar said:

    I can't imagine people are buying LXes as a family hauler...makes sense to go 2 row only; the Range Rover is, isn't it?  Leave the 3rd row to the family haulers, otherwise it's a waste of space...

    The Range Rover is also significantly smaller. The LX is nearly Escalade/Navigator sized.

    My point was that it doesn't make sense to have a significantly different configuration for a vehicle that only sells 600 a month.

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    Agree on the interior room issue.

    12 hours ago, Drew Dowdell said:

    The Range Rover is also significantly smaller. The LX is nearly Escalade/Navigator sized.

    My point was that it doesn't make sense to have a significantly different configuration for a vehicle that only sells 600 a month.

    Range Rover is also much more attractive.

    18 hours ago, Cubical-aka-Moltar said:

    The Highlander is a midsize CUV w/ 3 rows available.. Ford does it also on the Explorer.  Different market niche than full size.  I assume Cadillac will get in the game sooner or later with a 3 row XT5 (or an XT7?).

    Yes but the Highlander 3rd Row is a joke, actually.

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      Future Jaguar models will be built exclusively on a pure electric architecture.
      Reimagine is designed to deliver simplification too. By consolidating the number of platforms and models being produced per plant, the company will be able to establish new benchmark standards in efficient scale and quality for the luxury sector. Such an approach will help rationalise sourcing and accelerate investments in local circular economy supply chains.
      From a core manufacturing perspective that means Jaguar Land Rover will retain its plant and assembly facilities in the home UK market and around the world. As well as being the manufacturer of the MLA architecture, Solihull, West Midlands will also be the home to the future advanced Jaguar pure electric platform. 
      Key partners including Trade Unions, retailers and those in the supply chain will continue to play a vital part of the extended new Jaguar Land Rover ecosystem and its journey towards reimagining the future of modern luxury.
      ReFocus to a more agile operation
      As evidenced with the latest financial results, Jaguar Land Rover has a strong foundation on which to build a sustainable and resilient business for its customers and their communities, partners, employees, shareholders and the environment.
      Driving this transformation is the recently launched Refocus programme, by consolidating existing initiatives like Charge+ with new cross-functional activities.
      Reimagine will see Jaguar Land Rover right-size, repurpose and reorganise into a more agile operation. The creation of a flatter structure is designed to empower employees to create and deliver at speed and with clear purpose.
      To accelerate this efficiency of focus, the company will substantially reduce and rationalise its non-manufacturing infrastructure in the UK. Gaydon will become the symbol of this effort – the ‘reactor’ of the business - with the Executive Team and other management functions moving into the one location to aid frictionless cooperation and agile decision-making.  
      Leapfrog to leadership with Tata Group
      In order to realise its vision of modern luxury mobility with confidence, the company will curate closer collaboration and knowledge-sharing with Tata Group companies to enhance sustainability and reduce emissions as well as sharing best practice in next-generation technology, data and software development leadership. Jaguar Land Rover has been a wholly-owned subsidiary of Tata Motors, in which Tata Sons is the largest shareholder, since 2008.
      “We have so many ingredients from within. It is a unique opportunity,” said Mr Bolloré. “Others have to rely solely on external partnerships and compromise, but we have frictionless access that will allow us to lean forward with confidence and at speed.”
      Bringing all these ingredients together, Jaguar Land Rover is on a path towards double-digit EBIT margins and positive cash flow, with an ambition to achieve positive cash net-of-debt by 2025. 
      Ultimately, Jaguar Land Rover aims to be one of the most profitable luxury manufacturers in the world.
      Mr N Chandrasekaran, Chairman of Tata Sons, Tata Motors and Jaguar Land Rover Automotive plc commented: “The Reimagine strategy takes Jaguar Land Rover on a significant path of acceleration in harmony with the vision and sustainability priorities of the wider Tata Group. Together, we will help Jaguar realise its potential, reinforce Land Rover’s timeless appeal and collectively become a symbol of a truly responsible business for its customers, society and the planet.”
      Mr Bolloré concluded: “As a human-centred company, we can, and will, move much faster and with clear purpose of not just reimagining modern luxury but defining it for two distinct brands. Brands that present emotionally unique designs, pieces of art if you like, but all with connected technologies and responsible materials that collectively set new standards in ownership. We are reimagining a new modern luxury by design.”

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      Jaguar Land Rover hasn't been doing very well for the past few years. Numerous issues such as poor sales in China, demand for diesel powered vehicles dropping, and the pandemic have put the automaker in a difficult place. This morning in the United Kingdom, Jaguar Land Rover CEO Thierry Bolloré announced plans to make Jaguar an electric only brand by 2025; Land Rover to launch six electric models; and to become a net-zero-carbon business by 2039.
      "We are harnessing those ingredients today to reimagine the business, the two brands and the customer experience of tomorrow. The Reimagine strategy allows us to enhance and celebrate that uniqueness like never before. Together, we can design an even more sustainable and positive impact on the world around us," Bolloré said in a statement.
      Jaguar

      Out of the two brands, Jaguar is hurting the most. Sales have dropped like a rock due to people stepping away from sedans and diesel powertrains. Bolloré's plan has the brand moving to an all-electric lineup by 2025. Not many details were released or talked about during the press conference this morning. What we do know is,
      Future models will utilize a new modular electric platform, known as the Electric Modular Architecture (EMA). The planned XJ replacement, rumored to go electric has been canceled. Likely reason for the cancelation is the platform that was going to be used for this model likely didn't scale to other models. Jaguar did say the XJ name could appear again on a future model. Automotive News (Subscription Required) reports that Jaguar will also move away from SUV-styled vehicles, likely meaning the end of the E and F-Pace. Land Rover

      Land Rover isn't going to dive in quickly as Jaguar into EVs. The plan is to continue offering a mix of powertrains, but with a heavy focus on electrification. Six all-electric models are planned to be launched by 2030, with the first model coming out in 2024. No word on what that model would be, but our guess is possibly a Range Rover EV. Land Rover will use Electric Modular Architecture for EVs, alongside the Modular Longitudinal Architecture (MLA) for hybrids. The goal is to have 60 percent of Land Rover sales be for electrics by 2030.
      Other Details
      Jaguar Land Rover said that it would keep all three of its U.K. plans open, but the Castle Bromwich plant(home to Jaguar XE, XF, and F-Type production) has a unclear future.
      “First we will continue production of our existing nameplates built there to the end of their lifecycle. Then we will explore opportunities to refurbish the plant, which could benefit from the consolidation of businesses scattered across the Midlands,” said Bolloré.
      Jaguar Land Rover is also planning on moving their executive team and other major management positions to a centralized location in Gaydon, and work more closely with their parent company, Tata Group.
      Source: Jaguar Land Rover
      Jaguar Land Rover reimagines the future of modern luxury by design
      New global strategy – Reimagine – announced for the British company under the leadership of Chief Executive Officer, Thierry Bolloré A sustainability-rich reimagination of modern luxury, unique customer experiences, and positive societal impact Start of journey to become a net zero carbon business by 2039 Reimagination of Jaguar as an all-electric luxury brand from 2025 to ‘realise its unique potential’ In the next five years, Land Rover will welcome six pure electric variants as it continues to be the world leader of luxury SUVs All Jaguar and Land Rover nameplates to be available in pure electric form by end of the decade; first all-electric Land Rover model in 2024 Clean-hydrogen fuel-cell power being developed in preparation for future demand Streamlined structure to deliver greater agility and promote an efficiency of focus Global manufacturing and assembly footprint to be retained, rightsized, repurposed and reorganised Collaborations and knowledge-sharing with industry leaders, in particular from within the wider Tata Group will allow the company to explore potential synergies on clean energy, connected services, data and software development leadership On a path towards double-digit EBIT margin and positive cash flow, with an ambition to achieve positive cash net-of-debt by 2025 with a value creation approach delivering quality and profit-over-volume Gaydon, UK - Monday 15th February 2021:
      A vision of modern luxury by design
      Jaguar Land Rover will reimagine the future of modern luxury by design through its two distinct, British brands.
      Set against a canvas of true sustainability, Jaguar Land Rover will become a more agile creator of the world’s most desirable luxury vehicles and services for the most discerning of customers. A strategy that is designed to create a new benchmark in environmental, societal and community impact for a luxury business.
      “Jaguar Land Rover is unique in the global automotive industry. Designers of peerless models, an unrivalled understanding of the future luxury needs of its customers, emotionally rich brand equity, a spirit of Britishness and unrivalled access to leading global players in technology and sustainability within the wider Tata Group.
      “We are harnessing those ingredients today to reimagine the business, the two brands and the customer experience of tomorrow. The Reimagine strategy allows us to enhance and celebrate that uniqueness like never before. Together, we can design an even more sustainable and positive impact on the world around us,” said Mr Bolloré.
      Two distinct modern luxury brands with sustainability at the centre
      At the heart of its Reimagine plan will be the electrification of both Land Rover and Jaguar brands on separate architectures with two clear, unique personalities.
      In a Land Rover, vehicle and driver are united by adventure. By breaking new ground, confronting new challenges and not being content with the expected, Land Rover truly helps people to go ‘Above and Beyond’. In the next five years, Land Rover will welcome six pure electric variants as it continues to be the world leader of luxury SUVs through its three families of Range Rover, Discovery and Defender. The first all-electric variant will arrive in 2024.
      By the middle of the decade, Jaguar will have undergone a renaissance to emerge as a pure electric luxury brand with a dramatically beautiful new portfolio of emotionally engaging designs and pioneering next-generation technologies. Jaguar will exist to make life extraordinary by creating dramatically beautiful automotive experiences that leave its customers feeling unique and rewarded. Although the nameplate may be retained, the planned Jaguar XJ replacement will not form part of the line-up, as the brand looks to realise its unique potential.
      Jaguar and Land Rover will offer pure electric power, nameplate by nameplate, by 2030. By this time, in addition to 100% of Jaguar sales, it is anticipated that around 60% of Land Rovers sold will be equipped with zero tailpipe powertrains.
      Jaguar Land Rover’s aim is to achieve net zero carbon emissions across its supply chain, products and operations by 2039. As part of this ambition, the company is also preparing for the expected adoption of clean fuel-cell power in line with a maturing of the hydrogen economy. Development is already underway with prototypes arriving on UK roads within the next 12 months as part of the long-term investment programme.
      Sustainability that delivers a new benchmark in environmental and societal impact for the luxury sector is fundamental to the success of Reimagine. A new centralised team will be empowered to build on and accelerate pioneering innovations in materiality, engineering, manufacturing, services and circular economy investments. 
      Annual commitments of circa £2.5bn will include investments in electrification technologies and the development of connected services to enhance the journey and experiences of customers, alongside data-centric technologies that will further improve their ownership ecosystem.
      Proven services like the flexible PIVOTAL subscription model (which has grown 750% during the fiscal year), born out of Jaguar Land Rover’s incubator and investor arm, InMotion, will now be rolled out to other markets following a successful launch in the UK.
      Quality and efficiency
      Reimagine will see Jaguar Land Rover establish new benchmark standards in quality and efficiency for the luxury sector by rightsizing, repurposing and reorganising.
      Central to that journey, and in order to establish different personalities for the two brands, is the new architecture strategy. 
      Land Rover will use the forthcoming flex Modular Longitudinal Architecture (MLA). It will deliver electrified internal combustion engines (ICE) and full electric variants as the company evolves its product line-up in the future. In addition, Land Rover will also use pure electric biased Electric Modular Architecture (EMA) which will also support advanced electrified ICE.
      Future Jaguar models will be built exclusively on a pure electric architecture.
      Reimagine is designed to deliver simplification too. By consolidating the number of platforms and models being produced per plant, the company will be able to establish new benchmark standards in efficient scale and quality for the luxury sector. Such an approach will help rationalise sourcing and accelerate investments in local circular economy supply chains.
      From a core manufacturing perspective that means Jaguar Land Rover will retain its plant and assembly facilities in the home UK market and around the world. As well as being the manufacturer of the MLA architecture, Solihull, West Midlands will also be the home to the future advanced Jaguar pure electric platform. 
      Key partners including Trade Unions, retailers and those in the supply chain will continue to play a vital part of the extended new Jaguar Land Rover ecosystem and its journey towards reimagining the future of modern luxury.
      ReFocus to a more agile operation
      As evidenced with the latest financial results, Jaguar Land Rover has a strong foundation on which to build a sustainable and resilient business for its customers and their communities, partners, employees, shareholders and the environment.
      Driving this transformation is the recently launched Refocus programme, by consolidating existing initiatives like Charge+ with new cross-functional activities.
      Reimagine will see Jaguar Land Rover right-size, repurpose and reorganise into a more agile operation. The creation of a flatter structure is designed to empower employees to create and deliver at speed and with clear purpose.
      To accelerate this efficiency of focus, the company will substantially reduce and rationalise its non-manufacturing infrastructure in the UK. Gaydon will become the symbol of this effort – the ‘reactor’ of the business - with the Executive Team and other management functions moving into the one location to aid frictionless cooperation and agile decision-making.  
      Leapfrog to leadership with Tata Group
      In order to realise its vision of modern luxury mobility with confidence, the company will curate closer collaboration and knowledge-sharing with Tata Group companies to enhance sustainability and reduce emissions as well as sharing best practice in next-generation technology, data and software development leadership. Jaguar Land Rover has been a wholly-owned subsidiary of Tata Motors, in which Tata Sons is the largest shareholder, since 2008.
      “We have so many ingredients from within. It is a unique opportunity,” said Mr Bolloré. “Others have to rely solely on external partnerships and compromise, but we have frictionless access that will allow us to lean forward with confidence and at speed.”
      Bringing all these ingredients together, Jaguar Land Rover is on a path towards double-digit EBIT margins and positive cash flow, with an ambition to achieve positive cash net-of-debt by 2025. 
      Ultimately, Jaguar Land Rover aims to be one of the most profitable luxury manufacturers in the world.
      Mr N Chandrasekaran, Chairman of Tata Sons, Tata Motors and Jaguar Land Rover Automotive plc commented: “The Reimagine strategy takes Jaguar Land Rover on a significant path of acceleration in harmony with the vision and sustainability priorities of the wider Tata Group. Together, we will help Jaguar realise its potential, reinforce Land Rover’s timeless appeal and collectively become a symbol of a truly responsible business for its customers, society and the planet.”
      Mr Bolloré concluded: “As a human-centred company, we can, and will, move much faster and with clear purpose of not just reimagining modern luxury but defining it for two distinct brands. Brands that present emotionally unique designs, pieces of art if you like, but all with connected technologies and responsible materials that collectively set new standards in ownership. We are reimagining a new modern luxury by design.”
    • By William Maley
      Considering the number of Lexus RC coupes I have driven over the years, there has been a significant hole - the V8 RC F. Whenever I have asked for one, the vehicle either wasn't in the press fleet or someone else was driving it during the dates I had available. But I was able to finally get my hands on one for a week in early fall. It was good timing as I was feeling the effects of being home for the past six months due to COVID-19. Maybe this coupe could give me a bit of joy.
      The RC F is not a shrinking violet. From its bright yellow paint, blacked-out 20-inch wheels, and optional carbon fiber package that includes a retractable rear spoiler, this coupe is very brash and proud of it. I'll admit that I was worried about scraping or cracking the carbon fiber front splitter if I took a steep entrance ramp or bump a bit too aggressively. It looks cool on the car, but the existential dread of an expensive repair bill does sour the appeal.  Not much changes on the inside for the RC F except for carbon fiber trim and a set of racing-style seats. Usually, I have a lot of trepidation on this type of seat because I don't fully fit in due to my slightly wide shoulders. But the seats conformed to my body within a day or so and I found them to offer the balance of support during hard-driving, and comfort for day-to-day - something I find to be hit and miss on seats from other automakers. Lexus Enform is still a frustrating infotainment system to use on daily basis. With a touchy control pad, it is easy to find yourself changing the song or end up in a different section of the system. This means you need to pay close attention to any change being made, which becomes a distraction hazard. Apple CarPlay is standard and does make using the system a bit more bearable. But I do wish Lexus would roll out their touchscreen system which makes it much more intuitive. Though, that likely will not come until a redesign, possibly in the next year or two. The main event for the RC F is under the hood. A 5.0L V8 engine with 467 horsepower and 389 pound-feet of torque - figures that slightly pale when compared to the BMW M4 or Mercedes-AMG C63. This is paired with an eight-speed automatic which routes the power to the rear wheels. The initial acceleration is a slight disappointment as the throttle response feels a bit sleepy. I'm not sure if this was due to improve fuel economy or throttle feel higher in the rev band. Thankfully, this sleepiness goes away as the car climbs up in speed and the V8 reveals its party trick. The noise that comes out of this engine sounds like a muscle car and you find yourself stepping the accelerator to enjoy it. Not much to say about the eight-speed automatic. It goes about its business smoothly and quickly. Fuel economy was surprising in the least, as I got an average of 18 mpg in mostly city and suburb driving. A set of adaptive dampers comes standard for the RC-F and gives it a split personality. Turn the drive mode knob to Sport+ and the dampers tighten up to make the coupe feel more agile than its weight of 4,017 pounds would suggest. Also helping in the handling are a set of Michelin Pilot Sport 4S summer tires, providing tenacious grip. But switch the drive mode into normal and RC F becomes a very comfortable and refined grand tourer. Ride quality is very good with only a few bumps making their way inside. A minimal amount of road and wind noise is present. One area where the RC F holds a distinct advantage over the completion is the base price of $65,925 - undercutting most by a few grand. The danger is going through the option list and deciding to go crazy, which explains the as-tested price of $89,654. You can chop off over $11,000 by skipping the Performance package which brings all of the carbon fiber bits. The RC F lacks the outright performance as those from Germany. But I'm willing to overlook it because sometimes you want a car that just shouts to the world and the RC F does that very well. During my week, I found myself reveling in the engine and the grand touring characteristics of the suspension. It brought me the joy which sometimes is all you need a car to do. Disclaimer: Lexus Provided the RC F, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2020
      Make: Lexus
      Model: RC F
      Trim: -
      Engine: 5.0L DOHC 32-Valve V8
      Driveline: Eight-Speed Automatic, Rear-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 467 @ 7,100
      Torque @ RPM: 389 @ 4,800 - 5,600
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 16/24/19
      Curb Weight: 3,958 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Tahara, Aichi, Japan
      Base Price: $64,900
      As Tested Price: $89,654 (Includes $1,025.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      Performance Package - $11,400.00
      Premium Package - $5,350.00
      Navigation System w/Mark Levinson Audio - $2,725.00
      Torque Vectoring Differential - $1,250.00
      Premium Triple Beam LED Headlamps - $1,160.00
      Flare Yellow Premium Paint - $595.00
      Intuitive Parking Assist - $500.00
      Illuminated Door Sills - $449.00
      Orange Metallic Brembo Brake Calipers - $300.00

      View full article
  • Posts

    • Yeah...that would be a personal opinion.  I like both equally.  But no matter which one you think is better looking, you cannot deny that the other is NOT not good looking.               
    • Lots of Italians, Sicilians, and Greeks in Steubenville, Ohio where I spent my childhood.  Our next door neighbors had immigrated from Palermo.   
    • Yes.  Along with a few remote villages in Sicily, some remote villages on the heel of the peninsula have retained modified forms of Greek.  Probably because they're even closer to the Peloponnesus.  Greek (this brings back memories): "Ohi" means "no," but "Ne" means "yes"  My favorite Greek surname:  Papadiamantis, also the name of the main street on the island of Skiathos Italian and Greek: I know of only one word that is common to both Italian and Greek:  pantofoli (bedroom slippers), thought there are surely others Sicilian and French: The 200 years of French Norman rule is seen in the Sicilian dialect, where some words come from French, like some of the ones in the video: where:  "unni" from "ou" work:  "travagghiu" from "travail" buy:  "accattari" from "acheter" and many, many more Sicilian and Italian (per video): Most words in Sicilian use "u" sounds for the "o" sounds in Italian, which makes it sound more guttural... that's the biggest difference. I have rarely heard cheese called "tumazzu," as in the video.  Most people just call it "furmaggiu." But they didn't include one of the most humorous differences of them all:  snail:  "lumaca" (in Italian), but "babbaluccia" (in Sicilian) (bubb-a-looch-cha)!
    • @trinacriabob       I was listening to those clips above and others a few weeks back. I was shocked to see that in some parts of Southern Italy, Greek is spoken still and mixed with Italian.   I knew that about Sicily, but not on mainland Italy.   I was even shocked to learn, this was yesterday, that a classic 1980 Giannis Poulopoulos song was but a cover. An Italian cover. From 1974.  And there is a catch, the song was written and sung by a very popular Italian singer, but the song was written and sung...in Greek.     Original  Mia Martini   Una faccia, una razza!  http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-yDqhw4Vhh-I/Tvr6TfymTmI/AAAAAAAABiw/ia8Zwy4TxDI/s1600/ItaliaGreciaBandiere.jpg    
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