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    William Maley

    There will not be a manual transmission option (cue sad panda)

    BMW would have loved to surprise everyone with the introduction of the 2019 3-Series at the Paris Motor Show today. But renderings of the new model from the configurator made their way onto the web yesterday. Still, there is a lot information that BMW has kept under wraps until now.
    Lets begin with the size. BMW has increased overall length by three inches, and extended the wheelbase by 1.6 inches. The car is slightly wider and loses up to 121 pounds depending on the configuration.
    For North America, BMW will offer three powertrains. At launch will be the 330i, which packs a 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder producing 255 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. This will be followed by the M340i that will use a turbocharged inline-six with 382 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque - expect more details on this engine when we get closer to the launch. Then in 2020, BMW will have the 330e PHEV - likely using the turbo 2.0L from the 330i. An eight-speed automatic transmission is the sole choice for the 330i and M340i. Rear-wheel drive is standard, while xDrive all-wheel drive is available as an option.
    BMW says the new model retains a 50:50 weight distribution and overall body rigidity is up by 25 percent. The suspension features new lift-related dampers that "adds extra hydraulic damping at the front axle and a compression limiting system at the rear." This allows for a more comfortable ride and better control of body motions. An optional M Sport suspension brings stiffer springs and lowers the vehicle by 0.4-inches. There will also be an optional adaptive damper setup.
    The 2019 BMW 330i arrives at dealers next March with a starting price of of $41,195 - includes a $995 destination charge. xDrive models begin at $43,245. The M340i follows in the spring, but no word on pricing.
    Source: BMW


    The All-New 2019 BMW 3 Series
    The seventh generation of BMW’s iconic sports sedan. New generation of design, suspensions, engines and technology. 330i and 330i xDrive on sale March 2019. Pricing starts at $40,250 + $995 Destination for the 330i. M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans to arrive in Spring 2019. 330e model planned for 2020. Woodcliff Lake, NJ – Oct. 2, 2018…Today, BMW proudly introduces the seventh generation of the iconic sports sedan, the BMW 3 Series. Over the past 40 years, no single model has embodied the concept of the Ultimate Driving Machine better than the BMW 3 Series Sedan. Modern design, agile handling, exceptional efficiency and innovative equipment features, all signature characteristics of a BMW, have been raised to a higher level through tireless engineering and testing. The new 2019 BMW 3 Series sedan represents not only the core of the BMW 3 Series range (of which over 15 million units have been sold worldwide) but also the heart and passion of the BMW brand.
    When the first BMW 3 Series arrived on U.S. shores in 1976 as a successor to the iconic BMW 2002, it built upon the sport sedan foundation pioneered by that model and launched a new name: the BMW 3 Series that would become BMW’s most successful model – a status it retains to this day. Over the course of six model generations, the BMW 3 Series has ranked as the world’s biggest-selling premium car, led the way for high-performance powertrain and chassis technology and earned a reputation as a pioneer of technological innovations in its segment. The latest edition of the car sees BMW building on the sporting tradition of the 3 Series, whose exploits in race competition have earned it many accolades. The seventh generation of the sports sedan moves the game on once again in terms of driving dynamics, not to mention premium quality and innovation, in its segment.
    BMW 330i: more power and torque
    Boasting numerous detail upgrades, the new 2.0-liter, inline 4-cylinder powering the new 2019 BMW 330i unit delivers 255 hp between 5,000 and 6,500 rpm and a peak torque of 295 lb-ft from 1,550 to 4,400 rpm. The 7 hp increase in output and the extra 37 lb-ft of torque compared with the predecessor engine are the result of the focused optimization of the BMW TwinPower Turbo system – which is made up a twin-scroll turbocharger, High Precision Injection direct petrol injection, VALVETRONIC fully variable valve timing and Double-VANOS variable camshaft timing. The High Precision Injection system ensures precise fuel metering and particularly clean combustion, its new fuel pump generating maximum pressure of 350 bar compared with the 200 bar of the previous version. The improved direct injection system enables optimal fuel flow through the combustion chambers with atomized fuel delivered by multi-hole injectors. Other characteristics of this engine include a lighter crankshaft, reduced internal friction, optimized heat management and a new digital engine management system. An impressive 0 to 60 mph time of 5.6 seconds belies the enhanced efficiency of the new BMW 330i Sedan.
    The 2019 BMW 330i arrives in March 2019 with a starting price of $40,250 plus $995 destination. The 330i xDrive sedan will start at $42,250 plus $995 destination.
    In addition to the 4 cylinder 330i, the line-up will expand further to include a BMW M Performance version with extremely sporting characteristics and a BMW iPerformance model with the latest plug-in hybrid drive technology.
    BMW M340i and M340i xDrive M Performance
    Spring of 2019 will see the arrival of the BMW M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans. The new BMW M Performance model will showcase the full dynamic potential of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan. An updated six-cylinder in-line gasoline engine, M Performance chassis tuning, optional xDrive intelligent all-wheel drive and the standard M Sport rear differential will deliver performance attributes that will impress any driver.
    The new version of the straight-six engine developed for the BMW M340i xDrive Sedan will produce 382 hp and peak torque of 369 lb-ft. A 0–60 mph time of 4.2 seconds (provisional figure) takes the BMW M Performance model into performance territory inhabited by high-caliber sports cars.
    8-speed Sport Steptronic transmission: improvement and greater integration
    The new 2019 BMW 330i and 330i xDrive Sedans are equipped with the 8-speed Sport Steptronic transmission as standard. The latest upgrade of this sport automatic transmission sees a wider gear spread (from 7.8 to 8.2 and also increases internal efficiency and improves vibration suppression. There is a new control unit and further enhanced gearshift dynamics. In addition to the optimized hydraulic control system, the shorter gearing for the lower ratios boosts the acceleration capability of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan. The 8HP 8-speed Sport Steptronic transmission delivers even shorter shift times and a Launch Control function for highly dynamic, traction optimized acceleration off the line than previous versions. Shift paddles on the steering wheel allow manual gear selection.
    Intelligent connectivity enables the sport automatic transmission to adapt its shift strategy according to the route and driving situation. With the optional Navigation system, the 8-speed Sport Steptronic transmission uses data from this system and from the Active Cruise Control system’s radar sensor. This makes it possible for the transmission to avoid unnecessary gear changes when negotiating a series of fast corners and, when approaching a vehicle ahead, for example, to shift down early in order to use the engine braking to scrub off speed.
    The Auto Start Stop function and the coasting function available in conjunction with the 8-speed Steptronic transmission in the new BMW 3 Series Sedan also use data supplied by the optional navigation system with data from the standard Active Guard driving assistance systems’ front camera. In this way, inefficient engine shutdown – for example when stopping briefly at junctions or roundabouts – can be prevented. Movement of vehicles ahead is registered in order to determine the ideal moment for the Auto Start Stop function to stop and start the engine. The coasting function is now available when either ECO Pro or COMFORT mode is selected using the Driving Experience Control switch between 9 and 99 mph. The efficiency-enhancing decoupling of the powertrain only takes place in driving situations where performance and comfort are not compromised. If the driver suddenly lifts off the accelerator, the powertrain stays connected so that engine braking can be used to support deceleration. For the same reason, powertrain disconnection is also prevented when approaching a junction or a vehicle ahead.
    BMW xDrive: fully variable and more efficient.
    The latest version of the intelligent all-wheel-drive system splits drive torque between the front and rear wheels more efficiently than in the previous 3 Series model. The fully variable power transfer ensures maximum traction and directional stability in all road and weather conditions while also promoting sportier handling. This functionality comes courtesy of the electronically controlled multi-plate clutch in the transfer case which links up with the Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) system and constantly adjusts power transmission – precisely and in a fraction of a second – in response to the driving situation. In this way, any tendency of the vehicle to oversteer or understeer greatly reduced.
    The system’s rear-biased set-up helps ensure the new BMW 3 Series Sedan retains the exhilarating driving experience drivers expect from a BMW. Sending more drive power to the rear wheels under normal driving increases agility when cornering. In situations which do not require all-wheel drive, the efficiency of BMW xDrive is increased by directing all the engine’s torque to the rear wheels. The weight of the system has also been reduced, while optimized oil supply increases internal efficiency.
    Chassis Technology: Sportiness and comfort
    When developing the body structure and chassis technology of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan, a number of clear priorities were used: enhanced driving dynamics, agile handling characteristics, high-precision steering and superior braking performance. The foundations for these attributes are provided by weight optimization, a low center of gravity, a perfect 50:50 front/rear weight distribution and, above all, by the increase in the front and rear track compared with the predecessor model, significantly increased camber values for the front wheels and the substantial increase in the stiffness of the body structure and suspension mountings. Overall body rigidity is up 25 percent, rising to as much as a 50 percent improvement in certain areas. The increased rigidity of the body and suspension mountings enables the M Sport suspension and Adaptive M suspension to go about their work in the most efficient way possible allowing for suspension spring rates to be increased by 20 percent over the previous-generation BMW 3 Series Sedan without loss of comfort.
    In addition to these measures, new shock absorber technology has been developed for the new BMW 3 Series Sedan. Used for the first time in a BMW model, the lift-related dampers are part of the car’s standard chassis and make a major contribution to the unique balance of sportiness and comfort – unrivalled by any other manufacturer – which defines the character of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan. The car’s handling and steering dynamics can be fine-tuned with a series of precisely matched chassis options. The functionally coordinated interplay of suspension, steering, tires, brake system and differential lock makes sport driving an effortlessly enjoyable experience.
    Lightweight construction and increased rigidity deliver greater agility.
    The rigorous testing and development of the new chassis design enhances the agility of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan in a number of ways. Many details of the proven double-joint spring strut front suspension and five-link rear suspension have been upgraded. Along with the sportier handling, the car’s ride comfort and acoustics have both been improved. Aluminum swivel bearings and control arms for the front axle, aluminum wheel mounts and a new generation of wheel bearings for the rear axle significantly reduce unsprung mass. The front axle – with its increased level of component rigidity, the shear panels used to connect the axle to the body and its specially tuned kinematics – enhances both steering precision and cornering dynamics. Factors contributing to the high level of comfort provided by the sedan include a hydraulically damped torque strut bearing, which eliminates vibration and oscillation. At the rear axle, extremely rigid control arms and axle sub-frames along with the use of thrust arms for the body mounting ensure very precise wheel location.
    Body weight reduced by as much as 121 lbs., drag coefficient as low as 0.26.
    As with the individual chassis components, the weight of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan’s body construction has been reduced. The progress achieved through BMW efficient lightweight measures is rooted in an intelligent material mix including increased use of high-strength steels and aluminum. The body-in-white is 44 lbs. lighter than the outgoing model and the front spring struts and engine sub-frame of the BMW 3 Series Sedan are now made of aluminum. This reduces the weight of the body structure by some 16.5 lbs. compared with the predecessor model. A further weight saving of almost 33 lbs. is achieved through the use of aluminum for the hood and front fenders.
    The optimization of its aerodynamic characteristics benefits not only the efficiency of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan, but also its performance. The drag coefficient (Cd) of the BMW 3 Series sedan has been reduced to a low 0.26, a reduction of .03 Cd over the previous BMW 3 Series. Factors responsible for the new segment-leading figures include the almost completely sealed underbody, aerodynamically optimized wheels, the use of Air Curtains at the front of the car and the latest generation of active air flap control, which extends across the BMW kidney grille and lower air intake.
    Premiere for lift-related dampers.
    A newly developed suspension and damping system contributes to the beautifully balanced handling of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan. The introduction of lift-related damper control reduces body movement perceptibly smoothing out vibrations caused by bumpy road surfaces and dynamic cornering, which paves the way for sporty, authoritative handling. The system adds extra hydraulic damping at the front axle and a compression limiting system at the rear. It is continuously variable and adjusts the damper firmness progressively according to the changing spring travel. This prevents excessive body dive when driving over large bumps and so avoids uncomfortable, nervous damping response.
    At the front axle, the first line of defense against body vibrations is an additional element within the inner sleeve of the damper. Only when greater loads are encountered does the entire damper become active. The rear dampers adapt continuously to the driving situation. Even when the vehicle is carrying heavier loads, they provide the ideal degree of hydraulic damping for the situation at hand. Lift-related damping is an active element of the suspension set-up and is designed specifically to optimize the balance between sportiness and comfort. The positive effect of progressive suspension adjustment can also be felt in less demanding circumstances; even small bumps can trigger damper lift, which makes a noticeable difference in enhancing passenger comfort.
    The new BMW 3 Series Sedan benefits from lift-related damping on both the standard and optional M Sport suspensions. With kinematics and elastokinematics clearly tuned for dynamic driving, the M Sport suspension features more rigid bearings and additional body struts, firmer springs and anti-roll bars, and an even higher degree of wheel camber.
    During fast compression and rebound, the damping forces are some 20 percent greater than the values with the standard suspension. This means that the difference between the two suspension options is about twice as great as on the predecessor model. Another element of the M Sport suspension – which now also applies to the all-wheel-drive model variants of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan – is a 0.4 inch lower ride height.
    Adaptive M suspension with electronically controlled dampers.
    As an alternative to the suspension variants with standard damper technology, customers can also specify Adaptive M suspension. This combines the characteristics of M Sport suspension with electronically controlled dampers. Able to deliver damping force to each wheel separately via continuously adjustable valves, it is both the sportiest and most comfortable suspension variant available for the new BMW 3 Series Sedan. The latest version of this damping system operates with new valves and an optimized control algorithm, which now also enables load-dependent control of the damping forces. In addition, switching between the different modes using the Driving Experience Control switch now results in a much more perceptible variation in the damping characteristics. In COMFORT mode, the electronically controlled dampers provide well-balanced long distance comfort, whereas in SPORT mode they encourage a much more dynamic driving style. As well as modifying the damper configuration, each setting also influences the steering, accelerator response and the shift dynamics of the Steptronic transmission. ADAPTIVE mode is now also available. With this setting selected, the car automatically adjusts its responses to the driving style and, depending on the equipment specified, to the route profile. The control system responds to accelerator and steering inputs and the position of the selector lever to make the powertrain and suspension characteristics sportier or more comfort-oriented. The map data supplied by the optional Navigation system Professional is also used to prepare the car for an upcoming junction or bend.
    Variable sport steering: More direct, precise and agile
    The Electric Power Steering of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan comes standard with Servotronic speed-sensitive power assistance. Variable sport steering is part of the M Sport suspension and Adaptive M Sport suspension. With its variable ratio, which adjusts to changes in the steering angle, it is as adept at keeping the new BMW 3 Series Sedan effortlessly in a straight line as at maximizing cornering agility or turning and maneuvering comfort. In its latest form, the variable sport steering is more direct in its responses, even when only a slight steering input is applied. Cornering is precise and responsive, while the wheel angles required for parking maneuvers are achieved with less steering wheel input required.
    M Sport brakes:
    High-performance lightweight brakes play a very important part in the sporty handling characteristics of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan. The model-specific brake discs consist of a grey cast iron friction ring with an aluminum brake disc chamber to offer high performance combined with reduced weight. The M Sport brakes provide excellent braking performance and intuitive feel, whether negotiating city streets or driving around a circuit on a track day. Combining an extremely sporty set-up - with short pedal travel and a distinct pressure point – with outstanding thermal resistance, they provide lasting and effective stopping power. The M Sport brakes achieve this with a more direct ratio as well as a different hydraulic configuration including four piston fixed calipers at the front and single-piston floating calipers at the rear.

    All the brake calipers are painted blue and display the M logo.
    The functions provided by the Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) system include not only anti-lock braking (ABS) and Dynamic Traction Control (DTC), but also a variety of stabilizing functions and the Start-Off Assistant. The standard Performance Control heightens the agility of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan by distributing the power to the rear wheels as the situation allows. In order to optimize directional stability during heavy braking on surfaces with differing levels of grip for the right-hand and left-hand wheels, a steering impulse is applied to help the driver correct the car’s line. The functioning of the electromechanical parking brake is integrated into the rear brake calipers by means of the DSC system.
    M Sport differential optimizes traction, agility, stability and cornering dynamics.
    The M Sport differential for the rear axle is available as an option for the BMW 330i in combination with M Sport suspension or Adaptive M suspension. The electronically controlled, fully variable locking function in the rear differential helps to appreciably enhance traction and cornering. The active differential lock also has a positive effect on directional stability and agility.
    Using the DSC system to precisely limit rotational speed equalization between the inside and outside rear wheel when cornering optimizes the transfer of power to the road in all driving situations. The locking effect produced by an electric motor allows as much as 1,106 lb-ft of torque to be redirected from the faster-turning wheel to the slower-turning one. This means that, during rapid cornering, for example, any tendency to understeer can be countered effectively. Here, the engine’s power, which cannot be transferred to the road by the unloaded wheel on the inside of a turn, is deliberately shifted to the wheel on the outside of the turn rather than applying the brakes to neutralize its effect. This draws the car into the bend allows and allows the new BMW 3 Series Sedan to accelerate out of the bend with grip and speed.
    The effect of the M Sport differential will be equally noticeable in a series of fast bends. The distribution of power to each individual wheel prevents the tendency to oversteer in situations involving multiple changes of direction and load. Here, the transfer of more power to whichever wheel is on the inside of the bend enables the driver to stick to the chosen course with increased stability and confidence. Similarly, when the driver changes lanes and brakes at the same time, directional stability is optimized through the transfer of power between the right and left-hand rear wheels.
    Exterior design: an expression of sporting prowess.
    The exterior design of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan uses a combination of precisely drawn lines and strikingly contoured surfaces to create a modern interpretation of the sporting aesthetic. Its new design language provides a clear showcase for the athletic character of the car. The new 3 Series Sedan is 2.9 inches longer than its predecessor, 0.6 inches wider and 0.5 inches taller. These dimensions lend the latest-generation model dynamically stretched proportions and a muscular stature. The car’s 1.6 inch longer wheelbase and increased track widths of +1.7 inches front and +0.8 inches rear, meanwhile, have a direct and positive influence on its poise and agility.
    In keeping with the sporting theme, the front end of the BMW 3 Series Sedan cuts a wide, low-slung and aggressive figure. The large BMW kidney grill elements are framed by a single surround and split up by wide bars that link to the headlight units. A technically sophisticated and visually smaller interpretation of the customary BMW twin headlights gives them a road-focused stare. Their familiar two-way split is emphasized by an eye-catching notch in the front bumper that rises up into the headlight contour. Full-LED headlights come as standard, while LED headlights with extended features and U-shaped daytime driving lights are available as an option. The optional Adaptive LED headlights with BMW Laserlight stand apart with their hexagonal daytime driving light rings and blue, L-shaped elements in the inner and outer light sources.
    The hood is shaped by four contour lines flowing towards the BMW kidney grill. At its leading edge, it sits flush with the upper edge of the headlights and kidney grill. Below it, the front bumper has large surfacing and a modern look. Both the optional front fog lamps and the Air Curtains are integrated into the outer air intakes, which are inserted into the front bumper in a horizontal T shape on Sport Line and Luxury Line models. This design was originally developed by the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA) for the intake air in jet engines and later became a feature on racing cars.
    The car’s hood, long wheelbase, short overhangs and elegantly flowing roofline accentuate its sporting profile when viewed from the side. A pair of character lines, which rise up to the rear of the car at door-handle level, strengthen the visual impact made by the forward-surging body. A contour line near the side skirts guides the eye to the sculpted rear wheel arches.
    Another feature treated to a striking new look is the Hofmeister kink – the familiar counter-swing at the trailing edge of the side window graphic. A BMW hallmark, this element of the window frame is now integrated into the C-pillar, giving the rear doors a “freestanding” glass edge. The new design language majors on clear forms and precise lines, and this approach is also visible in the transition of the flanks into the car’s rear end. Surface contours flow stylistically into the rear bumper from the side skirts and extend in an upwards movement via the rear lights up to the spoiler lip on the trunk lid. Horizontal lines and the slim, stylishly darkened light units housing L-shaped LED taillights give the rear a wide and athletic stance. The T-shaped trim elements in the outer edges of the rear bumper – which also include a light function in the form of reflectors – mimic the design of the front air intakes on cars with standard specification and on Sport Line and Luxury Line models. The exhaust system’s 80 or 90-millimeter (depending on the model variant) twin tailpipes play a role in the car’s arrestingly sporty appearance.
    From launch, customers can choose from two non-metallic colors and ten metallic shades for the exterior of their new BMW 3 Series Sedan, including the new Portimao Blue metallic and Vermont Bronze metallic.
    Interior: a classy route to sporting flair.
    The brand’s new design language brings a clear arrangement of surfaces to the interior of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan. This accentuates the increased spaciousness of the cabin and, together with the cockpit’s focus on the driver, enhances their focus on the road ahead. The instrument panel has a modern, light look, and its horizontal lines, high-quality electroplated trim strips and contours extending into the doors lend themselves to a feeling of width and elegance. The coordinated design of the door trim, instrument panel and center console create an all-round feeling of space and a sporting aura. With their dynamic lines and clasp-style door openers, the front and rear door trim panels create a neatly coherent impression. The newly designed instrument cluster and Control Display form a large surfaced screen grouping, while the controls not included in these units are clustered into clearly structured function panels. In the center of the instrument panel, the displays and buttons for the air conditioning and the central air vents form a sharply designed unit, while the light functions are operated from a panel of buttons next to the steering wheel. The start/stop button for the engine is now positioned in a classy control panel in the center console, where the gearshift lever or newly designed selector lever is joined by the iDrive Controller and the buttons for the Driving Experience Control switch unit and electromechanical parking brake.
    The range of standard and optional interior trim elements available for the instrument panel and center console has been almost fully replaced. As well as elegant open-pore fine wood options, customers can choose from finishes including Aluminum Mesh Effect.
    Distinctive style: Sport Line, Luxury Line and M Sport
    The equipment lines offered as an alternative to standard Sport Line specification for the new BMW 3 Series Sedan enable further individualization of the car’s appearance. Carefully coordinated design and equipment features for the exterior and interior allow the Sport Line model, Luxury Line model and M Sport model to focus more intently on either the dynamic driving experience or luxurious elegance of the four-door car. As well as a line-specific front- and rear bumper design, they also come with exclusive light-alloy wheels in 18-inch formats, bespoke door sill strips and LED front fog lamps.
    The standard Sport Line model interior, includes trim strips in high-gloss black and sports seats for the driver and front passenger. The Luxury Line uses chrome applications for the BMW kidney grille, front air intakes and rear apron to bring out the car’s elegant side even more prominently. Vernasca leather trim, Sensatec instrument panel and door trim, and fine wood interior trim strips in high-gloss Ash grey brown enhance the interior’s premium ambience.
    The M Sport model variant of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan is all about the complementing the car’s handling and appearance. The Line’s standard M Sport Suspension or optional Adaptive M Suspensions are enhanced by Variable Sport steering. This variant features larger air intakes in the front end and an equally distinctive design for the side skirts and rear bumper. These elements are joined by BMW Individual high-gloss Shadow Line trim, kidney grille bars in High-gloss Black, air intake trim in High-gloss Black and a rear diffuser in Dark Shadow. The design of the interior is also focused one-hundred per cent on the car’s sporty driving experience, thanks – among other things – to sports seats with M-specific upholstery, an M leather steering wheel, an anthracite-colored BMW Individual headliner and interior trim strips in Aluminum Tetragon.
    Interior and equipment: Refined premium ambiance and innovative options.
    The cabin of the new 2019 BMW 3 Series Sedan was designed to offer a modern space with a focus on driving enjoyment. The driver, the front passenger and those travelling in the three rear seats will appreciate the extra space over the predecessor model, not just on long distance journeys but in everyday driving too. Higher quality materials, precise build quality and numerous meticulously crafted details set the tone for the refined premium character of the four-door sedan.
    The standard sports seats provide very good lateral support and have an even greater range of adjustment. The new Vernasca leather upholstery available as an option has an exceptionally high quality feel. It comes in a choice of five colors and includes special decorative quilting and seam patterns, which vary according to the equipment line.
    Shoulder room in the front of the cabin has increased while passengers in the rear benefit from more legroom, and all occupants now enjoy more headroom than in the new BMW 3 Series Sedan’s predecessor. Seating comfort in the rear has been improved significantly, and long journeys are now a more comfortable experience for the passenger in the middle of the three rear seats.
    Getting in and out of the car is now easier for the rear passengers in the new car, as the modified roof edge and side skirt contouring has increased the height of the door aperture, while the distance between the front and rear seats has been extended by 0.4 inches. The rear compartment can accommodate a row of three child seats, two of which can be locked into place using ISOFIX anchor points. This is now an easier process, as the bars in question are positioned further to either side.
    Optimized all-round visibility, glass roof with far larger surface area.
    The slender A-pillar trim, the new location of the Control Display and the rearview mirror’s ultra-slim frame all serve to optimize the view through the windscreen at the same time as adding to the interior’s more spacious feel. The view to the rear has also been significantly improved. Customers opting for the glass roof, will be greeted by a larger glass area that can be better enjoyed by rear seat passengers.
    The new BMW 3 Series Sedan’s trunk capacity has been increased from 15.8 to 17.0 cubic feet, and its new partitioning into primary luggage compartment and separate storage compartments has created an additional 1.3 cubic feet of space. The optional Storage package adds features such as extra storage areas, partition nets on both sides of the trunk, bag hooks, and a 12V socket. The standard 40:20:40 split-folding rear backrest makes it easy to transport particularly large and bulky items. If the Comfort Access option is specified, the car will automatically unlock when the keyfob is detected in its immediate vicinity and lock again when it moves out of range. This feature’s functionality includes hands-free opening and closing of the trunk lid. A new movement sensor in the key permanently monitors whether the key is being carried (and therefore is always transmitting) or has been put down on a table, for example, allowing it to switch into standby mode with the transmit function deactivated.
    Ambient lighting: an atmospheric interior mood
    The standard lighting for the cabin of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan is composed entirely of LEDs. This includes the reading and interior lights in the front and rear, as well as the lighting for the glove compartment, the storage compartment under the center armrest, the footwells, the mirrors in the sun visors and the boot, plus the courtesy lights in the doors. The optional ambient lighting results in atmospherically rich illumination of the cabin, which can also be adjusted as desired. The additional indirect lighting of the contour lines running along the instrument panel and the door paneling uses precisely positioned LED fiber-optic light guides to create a dynamic, exclusive mood. A total of six light colors and eleven combinations of brightness, light distribution and color scheme for all light sources in the interior can be selected from the iDrive menu. In addition, the Dynamic interior light function emits pulsating light signals in specific situations. These signals appear on the inner trim of an open door when the engine is running and on the instrument panel in response to an incoming phone call. Another of the optional ambient lighting’s functions is the Welcome Light Carpet, which illuminates the approach to the doors when they are unlocked using the central locking or a door is opened.
    Adaptive LED headlights with BMW Laserlight.
    In standard specification, the task of illuminating the road ahead falls to full-LED headlights that use LED units not just for low beam and high beam, but also for the daytime driving lights and direction indicators. The optional LED headlights with extended features include a dynamic cornering light function, and employ U-shaped LED units in the inner and outer headlights as daytime driving lights. Automatic High Beams are available as an additional option in conjunction with both headlight variants. The LED fog lamps (also optionally available) are horizontal in form and integrated into the outer air intakes.
    For even better visibility when driving at night, customers can opt for the Adaptive LED headlights with BMW Laserlight, which offer variable illumination of the road ahead and a non-dazzling high beam. Blue, L-shaped accents inside the signature twin headlights reveal the presence of this highly sophisticated lighting technology.

    Innovative technology is employed for cleaning the windshield too. The wiper arms with integral spray nozzles specially developed for the new BMW 3 Series Sedan allow the washer fluid to be distributed in a very even manner, ensuring it does not impair the view through the windscreen at whatever speed the car is travelling.
     
    Optimized acoustics: climate control, A-pillars, windscreen and doors
    The new BMW 3 Series Sedan comes standard with a rain sensor, automatic headlights, a hands-free phone system and three-zone automatic climate control with independent control of the temperature and ventilation settings for the driver, front passenger and rear passengers. The acoustic properties of both systems have been improved. The air ducts and outlets have been redesigned and pressure losses reduced, leading to a perceptible decrease in flow noise when the ventilation, heating or air conditioning are operating.
    Body improvements to divert wind noise further boost acoustic comfort, while the structural foam used to fill the A-pillars lessens the amount of wind noise that reaches the interior. Acoustic glass for the windscreen is part of standard specification for the new BMW 3 Series Sedan. This type of glass is available as an option for the side door windows.
    Audio and sound
    The BMW Live Cockpit infotainment system with the standard hi-fi audio features ten speakers and an amplifier with 205 watts of output. Those looking to bring the ultimate in audio quality to the new BMW 3 Series Sedan, can select the optional Harman Kardon surround sound system, which upgrades the system to 16 speakers and a digital seven-channel amplifier generating output of 464 watts.
    Driver Assistance Systems
    The new BMW 3 Series Sedan takes the exciting driving experience to new heights. But it also assumes a pioneering role when it comes to assistance systems designed to ease the driver’s workload in monotonous driving conditions – such as traffic jams – and lends a helping hand in awkward maneuvering situations. The new model generation offers a far wider choice of standard and optionally available systems which enhance specific aspects of comfort and safety. This array of advanced driver assistance systems takes the new BMW 3 Series Sedan further along the road to automated driving than any of its rivals.
    Camera images and the data gathered by radar and ultrasonic sensors are used to monitor the vehicle’s surrounding area and either alert the driver to hazards or minimize the risk of an accident by means of corrective braking and steering. The optional Active Cruise Control with Stop and Go braking function helps to make life easier on long-distance journeys by automatically accelerating or slowing down the car to maintain the desired speed set by the driver. The set speed can be imported directly from the optional traffic sign recognition system’s display. The Active Cruise Control system with Stop & Go function goes even further to help the driver by not just maintaining the chosen cruising speed but also keeping a safe distance from vehicles travelling ahead. The system is operational in a speed range from 0 – 130 mph and is able to brake the vehicle to a standstill, if necessary. The maximum length of time that can pass before the car starts off again automatically has been extended to 30 seconds. In order to determine the ideal moment to pull away, the system’s sensors now register not only the vehicle immediately ahead, but the one in front of that as well.
    The new BMW 3 Series Sedan comes standard with the Active Guard Collision and Pedestrian Warning with City Braking function, the latest version of which also alerts the driver when a cyclist is detected. Depending on the situation, the system can bring the vehicle to a halt to either avoid a collision or minimize its consequences. The optional Driving Assistant includes Lane Departure Warning and Blind Spot Detection systems, which operate from 44 – 130 mph and from 12 mph to the car’s top speed respectively, and help the driver to guide the car back onto the correct path with a steering input. The Driving Assistant’s remaining functions also include Rear Collision Protection and Cross-Traffic Alert, thereby reducing the risk of a collision when reversing into roads that are obstructed from the driver’s view. To help it keep an eye on what’s happening behind the car, Cross-Traffic Alert is able to employ both the radar sensors in the rear apron and the rear view camera.
    Driving Assistant Professional: the ultimate in comfort and safety
    The optional Driving Assistant Professional offers the full complement of assistance systems for comfortable and safe motoring. Underpinning it all is a trifocal camera co-developed with Mobileye, working in conjunction with a front facing radar. This complete package makes its systems available in an exceptionally wide range of situations. In addition to all the components of the Driving Assistant and the Active Cruise Control with Stop & Go function, it also includes the Steering and Lane Keeping Assistant, which takes its cues from road markings and vehicles driving ahead and works together with the driver to help keep the vehicle in the detected lane. A dedicated button on the steering wheel’s left-hand spoke ensures the systems are easy to operate. Pushing it once activates both the Active Cruise Control and the Steering and Lane Keeping Assistant.
    The Driving Assistant Professional also features the Lane Keeping Assistant with active side collision avoidance. As well as emitting visual warning signals and causing the steering wheel to vibrate, active side collision avoidance also uses a steering input to help avoid collisions. Rounding off the Driving Assistant Professional’s extensive list of functions are the evasion assistance, which now also reacts to pedestrians and Cross-Traffic Alert.
    The Extended Traffic Jam Assistant is designed to help the driver during the most tedious driving environment, stop and go traffic. Designed to operate on limited access highways at speeds up to 37 mph, this system integrates Lane Keeping Assistant, Active Cruise Control with Stop and Go and a driver attention monitoring camera that removes the need to touch the steering wheel every 30-50 seconds if the driver’s attention is clearly on the road ahead.
    BMW Head-Up Display: Larger projection area and optimized graphics
    The optional BMW Head-Up Display helps the driver to enjoy focused and extremely safe driving in the new BMW 3 Series Sedan. It projects driving-related information directly into the driver’s field of vision on the windshield, where it can be assimilated without the need to divert their eyes from the road. The latest generation of the system boasts a projection area 70 per cent larger than in the outgoing BMW 3 Series Sedan, plus enhanced graphics and additional display readings. The information projected by the BMW Head-Up Display includes the car’s speed, speed limits and overtaking restrictions, Check Control messages, status indicators and warnings from the assistance systems, detailed route guidance and turn instructions, and telephone and entertainment lists.
    Another feature activated in conjunction with the BMW Head-Up Display is distance warning, which is part of the Active Cruise Control system’s set of functions and flashes up a graphic icon to alert the driver when they get closer to the vehicle in front than the pre-set minimum distance.
    Parking Assistance Package Plus with Back-Up Assistant: maneuvering with ease
    Drivers of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan are also able to rely on the comprehensive support of innovative assistance systems when parking and maneuvering. The optional Park Distance Control (PDC) with sensors at both the front and rear provides visual and acoustic signals to prevent collisions with obstacles located to the side or rear of the vehicle. The optional Parking Assistance Package goes further with Automatic Parking, which automatically selects either parallel or perpendicular spaces along to the road, and maneuvering into them. The latest version of the system takes care of steering the car, accelerating, braking and automatic transmission shifting. What’s more, Automatic Parking can now also be used to automatically maneuver out of parallel parking spaces. Here, the driver first specifies the direction in which the parking space is to be exited by switching on the turn signal for the appropriate side. The system then guides the vehicle – using reversing and steering inputs – into a position from which the driver can leave the parking space with the steering turned to the same angle.
    Another of the Parking Assistant’s features is the innovative Back-Up Assistant, which helps the driver to exit parking spots or maneuver when space is limited. This system is the only one of its kind in the new BMW 3 Series Sedan’s segment. Back-Up Assistant offers the highly convenient option of automated reversing in confined spaces or situations where the driver does not have a clear view, such as narrow parking garages or entrances to courtyards. To do this, the system stores the steering movements for any section the car has just driven forward along at no more than 22 mph. The system is then able to reverse the vehicle for distances of up to 50 yards by steering it along exactly the same line it has just taken when moving forward, while all the driver has to do is operate the accelerator and brake pedals and monitor the area around the car. The Back-Up Assistant can back the car up at a maximum 5.5 mph.
    The rear view camera and the functions included with the optional Parking Assistant Package provide drivers with an excellent overview of the situation when parking or exiting parking spaces. The Park View, Panorama View and Remote 3D Top View features are used to create a 360° image of the vehicle and its surroundings – from different perspectives – in the Control Display. Meanwhile, the Remote 3D View function gives drivers the ability to call up a three-dimensional live image of their vehicle and its immediate vicinity on their smartphone.
    Displays and iDrive: Premier for the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant
    Making its debut in the new BMW 3 Series Sedan is the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant, an intelligent, digital character that responds to the prompt “Hey BMW”. The BMW Group is set to revolutionize driving pleasure with the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant and, in so doing, enter a new era in which drivers will increasingly be able to operate their car and access its functions and information simply by speaking. The range of functions and skills available will be constantly expanded as part of regular updates.
    BMWs acquire a digital personality
    The BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant learns routines and habits, and is subsequently able to apply them in the appropriate context. He helps the driver, learns their preferences and is familiar with their favored settings – e.g. for the seat heating or the places they drive to frequently using the navigation system (“Take me home”). It is familiar with the vehicle’s functions and is able to operate them as required. Saying “Hey BMW, I’m cold” will prompt the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant to adjust the temperature inside the car accordingly. The assistant will benefit from technical upgrades and be able to learn more and more preferences and favored settings. The assistant takes further strides forward with every command given, every question asked and every setting selected.
    A constant on-board companion: the digital BMW expert
    The arrival of the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant ensures there is always a genuine BMW professional on board. He is able to explain all sorts of different functions (“How does the High Beam Assistant work?”), provide current status information (“Is the oil level okay?”) and help answer questions (“What warning messages do I have?”). He knows the driver’s favorite settings, and can even activate a combination of them to enhance well-being. For instance, “Hey BMW, I feel tired” triggers a vitality program that adjusts the lighting mood, music and temperature, among other things, in order to make the driver feel more awake.
    The perfect driver assistant
    The Intelligent Personal Assistant is, in short, the ideal co-driver and comes in particularly useful during everyday driving (“Hey BMW, what is the closest gas station on my route”). To make navigation particularly easy, drivers can give him access to their calendar and contacts, which will enable him to find parking spaces at the destination, provide information on traffic jams along the route and remind the driver when they need to set off. It also learns destinations the customer drives to frequently.
    BMW Digital Key: turning the smartphone into a car key
    The BMW Digital Key employs Near Field Communication (NFC) technology to allow the new BMW 3 Series Sedan to be locked and unlocked from a compatible smartphone, removing the need for a conventional car key. Holding the smartphone up to the door handle opens the car. Once inside, the engine can be started as soon as the phone has been placed in the wireless charging or smartphone tray. Accessible via the BMW Connected app, the Digital Key offers unrivalled flexibility. The BMW Digital Key is compatible for all NFC-capable Samsung Galaxy smartphones running Android 8.0 and above. Compatibility is limited to select carriers.
    Connected Navigation with new digital services
    “Connected Navigation” encompasses a number of digital services that are designed to turn seamless and contextual route planning both inside and outside the BMW into a more sophisticated experience. Drivers of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan will be able to send destinations from various apps straight to their car’s navigation system. The most important destinations will be stored in BMW Connected and synchronized with the car, so that the key addresses can be accessed from any device at any time. One particularly helpful new feature is the Parking Finder, which proposes various parking options to the driver before the destination is reached. This service includes providing information on parking garages as well as on street parking spaces with a particularly good chance of being available near the destination. The existing On-Street Parking Information and ParkNow services have been intelligently incorporated into the new assistant’s scope of functions.
    BMW iDrive display and control: The right information at the right time
    The newly designed instrument cluster/Control Display screen grouping and extended functionality take intuitive operation to the next level in the new BMW 3 Series Sedan, while helping drivers to concentrate even more effectively on the road ahead. The standard BMW Live Cockpit features iDrive 6.0 with an 8.8-inch digital touchscreen Control Display and a 5.7-inch digital instrument color display.
    The optional BMW Live Cockpit Professional upgrades the interface with a 12.3-inch high-resolution digital instrument cluster display and a 10.25-inch digital touch screen Control Display featuring the all-new iDrive 7.0 Operating System. This equipment package also features the Connected Navigation system, a hard drive-based multimedia system with 20 GB of memory, Touch Controller, one USB-A and one USB-C port for data transfer, Apple CarPlay and WiFi interface.
    BMW Live Cockpit Professional also brings enhanced BMW iDrive 7.0 benefits to the new BMW 3 Series Sedan. The latest generation of BMW iDrive boasts fully digital displays and is geared even more closely to the driver’s personal needs – with the aim of maximizing their attention levels. The system’s clear presentation and structuring are designed to provide drivers with the right information at the right time, aided further by the customizable and personalized displays. The redesigned information display in the middle of the instrument cluster now leaves enough room for an excerpt from the navigation map, for instance. In the main menu on the Control Display, the driver is able to configure up to ten pages, each showing two to four pads (tiles) with live content.
    The intuitive multimodal interaction between driver and vehicle has undergone further improvement. The Control Display graphics adapt depending on the operating method, the voice control system (based on natural language understanding) is better than ever before and the optional BMW gesture control now works with two extra gestures, bringing the total to seven. Depending on the situation, the driver can operate the various functions using the familiar iDrive Controller, the steering wheel controls, touch control, voice control or gesture control.

    William Maley

    Before you ask, the U.S. will not be getting it.

    In the U.S., we only get one body style of the Elantra GT. In Europe where the model is known as the i30, Hyundai offers the standard hatchback and a lift back variant called the i30 Fastback. It is quite a good looking compact and makes us somewhat jealous that Europe gets it. Now, Hyundai upped our jealousness with the introduction of the i30 Fastback N.
    The Fastback follows the same recipe as the standard i30 N, beginning with a turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder engine producing either 246 or 271 horsepower - the latter for when you opt for the Performance Package. Torque stands at 260 pound-feet, but raises to 279 via a short overboost function. A six-speed manual transmission routes power to the front-wheels. The run to 60 mph takes 6.4 seconds for the standard model and 6.1 seconds for the Performance Pack.
    Hyundai doesn't provide any details on the suspension or brakes, but we expect them to be similar to the i30 N hatchback. We'll hopefully have more information when the i30 Fastback N debuts next week at Paris.
    And before anyone asks, the i30 Fastback N is not coming to the U.S.
    Source: Hyundai

    William Maley

    With a bit of help from BMW

    A new automaker will be making its global debut next month at the Paris Motor Show. VinFast, Vietnam's first automaker will be showing off a new sedan and SUV.
    For being their first models, the designs don't look half-baked. This comes down to VinFast reaching out to four major Italian car design houses to give design proposals and then allowing the people of Vietnam to vote for the winner. ItalDesign won the vote, but VinFast selected Pininfarina to do the finishing work. Both the sedan and SUV share a number of design traits such as the chrome V emblem with a set of chrome bars sitting on either side; LED daytime running lights, and faux mesh inserts for the bumper.
    If you're wondering why the sedan looks like a BMW 5-Series and the SUV like a BMW X5, that's due to VinFast using the last-generation platforms of those respective models. According to Autocar, VinFast has "future-proofed" the platforms to meet all global regulations, including side-impact and pedestrian. Power will come from BMW's 2.0L N20 turbo engines producing either 175 or 220 horsepower. The engines will not have BMW's Valvetronic variable valve timing system. This will be paired with an eight-speed ZF transmission.
    VinFast will begin a pilot production program at a plant near Hanoi in March, with full-scale production to take place in September. Alongside these two models, VinFast will also produce an electric scooter, a version of the Vauxhall Viva city car, and an electric bus. The company is hoping to export models sometime in the near future, though it is not said which markets the company is considering.
    Source: VinFast


    VinFast Honours Vietnam's Proud and Dynamic Beauty Through Creativity and World-Class Design
    Debut models feature perfectly balanced proportions with a contemporary, timeless design reflecting the Vietnam’s proud and dynamic beauty Distinctive front grille incorporates asymmetric VF motif Sedan and SUV represent the powerful, progressive spirit of a new, energetic and developing Vietnam VinFast makes its global debut with the presentation of two world premiere models at the Paris Motor Show on 2 October 2018 Hanoi, 10 September 2018 – The first two cars from new Vietnamese car company, VinFast, display its philosophy of ‘Vietnamese – Style – Safety – Creativity – Pioneering’ through a world-class design language developed with the world-renowned Pininfarina design team in Italy. The two premium models – a sedan and a SUV – will be given their world premieres at the Paris Motor Show on 2 October 2018.
    From a starting point of exceptional proportions, designers from VinFast and Pininfarina created timeless cars that each feature a long wheelbase and elegant, truly inspiring styling. A long bonnet, classic trunk and horizontal body lines create a symmetrical, sophisticated and elegant beauty for the premium sedan. The SUV’s more muscular bonnet and bold, purposeful character lines endows it with a more sporty identity, as if it is poised to break free.
    One specific highlight of the debutant’s design language is prominent at the front of both its new cars. The chrome V emblem at the centre of the grille is confidently and distinctively symmetric. To the right is a horizontal chrome splint that combines with the LED daytime running lights to create an italicised F-motif, representing the second syllable of VinFast, and a unique asymmetric flourish. From the central V emblem radiates the bold and lean crease lines that run over the bonnet, creating a fresh and modern look, reflecting the pride of Vietnam’s first car manufacturer to reach for the world.
    “The strong, distinguishable design, enhanced by elegant lines and refined details, gives our cars several distinctive highlights,” explains David Lyon, Director of Design at VinFast. “First and foremost, these emanate around the V logo in the grille which references the country of Vietnam, as well as the Vingroup and VinFast brands. In conjunction with Pininfarina, we have carefully sculptured each body line to express the natural beauty of Vietnam and the warm-hearted and dynamic characteristics of its people through a modern and world-class design language.”
    The proud and energetic styling of the VinFast sedan and SUV are also heavily influenced by the new company’s progressive approach to design. Breaking all traditional car development rules, VinFast gave the people of Vietnam the opportunity to determine the styling direction at the very start of the design process. More than 62,000 people voted when presented with 20 design sketches from four world-renowned Italian car design houses. Starting with ItalDesign’s winning concepts, the cars’ designs have since been developed and completed by Pininfarina. Designed for the Vietnamese people based on a selection made by the Vietnamese people, these debut VinFast models can truly be regarded as national products of Vietnam, embracing the pride and ambition of its citizens.
    As planned, just a year since the public design vote, VinFast will present the sedan and SUV on the international stage at the Paris Motor Show (press conference: 10.45am* CET on 2 October 2018), before introducing them to the Vietnamese public at the end of the year.
    With its debut in Paris, VinFast will become Vietnam’s first automotive manufacturer to participate in a major international motor show, signalling the confidence, pioneering approach and global outlook of a new and energetic brand.

    William Maley

    One crossover and one high-performance sedan

    Audi had two world premieres for this year's Paris Motor Show, the redesigned 2017 Q5 crossover and the high-performance RS3 sedan.
    We'll begin with the Q5 as it is one of Audi's most important vehicles. The first thing you'll notice is how much the new model looks like the outgoing one. Yes, there is a larger grille and sculpted lines from the larger Q7. But the redesigned Q5 somehow looks very much the same as the current one. At least the new Q5 is larger in all dimensions which allows for a more spacious interior. Speaking of the interior, the Q5 follows the same ideals as seen the in the A4. This means a clean and simple dash layout and the optional of Audi's Virtual Cockpit system that swaps the standard instrument cluster for a 12.3-inch screen.
    Engines for the European market include a choice of four and six-cylinder gas and diesel engines, along with a new hybrid powertrain. Details for the U.S. version will be announced at a later date. Transmissions include a six-speed manual, seven-speed dual-clutch automatic, and an eight-speed automatic. Front-wheel drive comes standard on the lower-powered engines, while quattro all-wheel drive comes standard on higher-powered models. New for this generation is an optional air suspension system that can vary the height of the vehicle.
    The 2017 Audi Q5 will be built in a new factory in San José Chiapa, Mexico. Sales are expected to begin next spring.
    Now on to the RS3 sedan. We have known about the existence of this model thanks to a leaked video that appeared in February. There is a more aggressive front end with larger air vents and honeycomb grille. Under the hood is a turbocharged 2.5L five-cylinder producing 400PS (about 395 horsepower) and 354 pound-feet of torque. This is paired with a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission and quattro all-wheel drive. Audi says the RS3 sedan hits 60 mph in 4.1 seconds and hit a limited top speed of 155 mph (you can increase top speed to 174 mph by asking Audi). 
    Other changes for the RS3 sedan include a wider track to fit fatter tires, larger brakes, lowered suspension, and unique settings for the stability and traction control systems. Adaptive dampers are available as an option.
    The Audi RS3 sedan arrives in the U.S. next summer.
    Source: Audi
    Press Release is on Page 2
    Even sportier and more multifaceted: the second generation of the Audi Q5 arrives
    Audi presents another successful model: Sales for the second generation of the Audi Q5* begin at the start of 2017. The SUV with the four rings combines the sportiness of an Audi saloon with a multifaceted character and a highly flexible interior. Whether in its connectivity, efficiency or driver assistance systems – the new Audi Q5 once again sets standards in its segment.
    “The first Audi Q5 was for many years the world's best-selling SUV in its class. It was no easy task to design its successor, but that is precisely why it is so very exciting,” says Rupert Stadler, Chairman of the Board of Management at AUDI AG. “With the new Q5 we are setting the bar a notch higher. Among the great innovations are the quattro drive system with ultra technology, highly efficient engines, the air suspension with damper control and a comprehensive line-up of infotainment and assistance systems.”
    The new SUV from Audi takes a sporty and taut stance on the street. A sculpturally flared Singleframe grille with a solid frame dominates its aerodynamically flat front end. It is available with headlights that are either in LED or high-resolution Matrix LED technology with dynamic turn lights.
    Typically Audi: Reference to the quattro drive
    A distinctively curved and strongly undercut shoulder line gives structure to the side view. The strongly emphasized wheel arches are a reference to the quattro permanent all-wheel drive system, and the low greenhouse tapers back down early. Just as at the front, horizontal lines at the rear convey an image of width and presence. The tail lights are also available with optional dynamic turn signals. The tailgate wraps around the C-pillars – a typical feature of the Q models from Audi. A diffuser insert integrates the exhaust tailpipes.
    Audi is offering the new Q5 in 14 different exterior colors. Five newly configured equipment lines are available – sport and design, the S line sport package, design selection and the S line exterior package. They influence the overall appearance. In the design line, contrasting gray add-on parts emphasize the rugged character of the new SUV, while the sport equipment line of the Audi Q5 has parts fully painted in the exterior color.
    Weight saved: up to 90 kg (198.4 lb) lighter than the previous model
    4.66 meters (15.3 ft) long, 1.89 meters (6.2 ft) wide and 1.66 meters (5.4 ft) tall with a 2.82 meter (9.3 ft) wheelbase – compared to the previous model, the new Q5 has grown in nearly all of its dimensions. Consequently, the unladen weight was reduced – depending on the engine – by up to 90 kg (198.4 lb). Steels with maximum tensile strength and aluminum form an intelligent material mix in the body.
    The new Q5 also stands at the top of its class in its aerodynamics. The four-cylinder versions attain a cd figure of 0.30 with the aerodynamically optimized roof. Wind noises are exceptionally low, and vibration comfort is high – the new SUV from Audi indulges the driver and passengers with the best interior acoustics in its class.
    Spacious and wide: the interior
    The interior offers a lot of space for five persons, and it surpasses the previous model and its competitors in key dimensions. Its horizontally oriented lines underscore the impression of width and comfort, and a three-dimensional trim strip runs across the entire width of the instrument panel. The new equipment lines concept offers customers a broad selection of colors and materials.
    The new, high-efficiency air conditioner is available in two versions. A three-spoke multifunction steering wheel is standard; additional functions such as steering wheel heating are optional. Seat features range all the way to a pneumatic massage function. When it is dark, the optional ambient lighting (standard with design selection) creates an attractive atmosphere in 30 different colors. The workmanship quality in the new Q5 is uncompromising.
    The rear seat back of the new Audi Q5 is split into three segments. Longitudinal and seat back angle adjustment are optional. Depending on the rear seat position, the basic volume of the luggage compartment ranges from 550 to 610 liters (19.4 to 21.5 cu ft), 10 liters (0.4 cu ft) more than in the previous model. When the rear bench is folded down, this volume grows to 1,550 liters (54.7 cu ft). Cargo loading is simplified by intelligent solutions like a standard, variably folding mat, optional sensor control of the power tailgate and manual lowering of the body via the optional air suspension.
    Simply coherent: controls and displays
    Operation of the new Audi SUV is intuitive and is marked by three great new features. The optional Audi virtual cockpit presents brilliant graphics on its high-resolution 12.3-inch screen. The driver can choose from two views – a classic view with large round instruments and a mode in which the navigation map or lists dominate. The also optional head-up display projects key information onto the windshield.
    The MMI terminal in the center console acts as the main control element. In the top infotainment system, the MMI navigation plus with MMI touch and an 8.3-inch display, a touchpad is integrated into the rotary pushbutton. It recognizes handwritten entries as well as gestures familiar from consumer electronics such as zooming gestures. If the new Q5 has an automatic transmission, it also has the larger MMI all-in-touch including haptic feedback.
    The MMI operating logic is based on the flat hierarchies used in today’s smartphones, and it offers such features as intelligent free-text search. The new natural-language voice control function also recognizes inputs from everyday speech. Serving as an additional third operating level in the new Audi Q5 is the multifunction steering wheel plus. Audi can deliver a newly developed head-up display as an option. It projects relevant information onto the windshield – including from driver assistance systems – as symbols and numbers that can be perceived quickly.
    Audi navigation: “Personal route assist”
    The new Audi Q5, like the Q7 and the A4, has a self-learning “personal route assist” function. After activating this function, the navigation system learns the routes and destinations that the customer regularly selects, and it associates this information to the parked position and time of day.
    For as long as it is active, the system therefore learns from the customer’s behavior and uses this information to suggest optimized route planning for the next trip – even while navigation is inactive. The navigation system incorporates the three most likely destinations into the calculation, taking into consideration both the arrival time and current traffic levels. For instance, the system can suggest that the customer activate navigation to find out about potential alternative routes. The driver decides whether or not to activate the function. He also has the option of deleting saved destinations. If the function is deactivated, the system does not store the destinations and does not consider deleted destinations or the routes driven.
    Online via LTE: MMI navigation plus
    MMI navigation plus utilizes the Audi connect module to integrate a LTE module and a Wi-Fi hotspot – this lets passengers go online with up to eight mobile devices. Audi connect enables convenient roaming in Europe for many Audi connect services with its permanently installed SIM card – the Audi connect SIM with a flat data rate. If they wish, users can also book data packages for the Wi-Fi hotspot at attractive prices, which also include EU roaming.
    The free Audi MMI connect app produces a close interconnection between the car and smartphone or a smartwatch and offers other services. They include remote checking of important vehicle states, online media streaming and transmission of a calendar from a smartphone to the MMI.
    High-end option: the infotainment modules
    The Audi phone box connects smartphones to the vehicle’s antenna for optimal reception quality; it also charges smartphones inductively according to the Qi standard. The Bang & Olufsen Sound System with innovative 3D sound introduces the spatial dimension of height. The Audi tablet, which is also new, serves as a flexible Rear Seat Entertainment device. The Audi smartphone interface also brings Apple CarPlay and Android Auto into the new Q5.
    Driver assistance and safety systems
    In its driver assistance systems, the new Audi Q5 also tops its segment with a broad range of high-tech options. In their intelligent interplay, the systems represent a next step towards piloted driving. They are bundled into three packages – Tour, City and Parking.
    The predictive efficiency assistant helps the driver save fuel by specific information on the car’s surroundings. Adaptive cruise control (ACC) including traffic jam assist can handle some of the steering work in slow-moving traffic. Audi active lane assist makes it easier to stay in lane. Distance warning alerts the driver when the distance to a vehicle drops below a safe distance.
    Cross traffic assist rear, the exit warning system, collision avoidance assist and turn assist are other new features that perform excellently in pursuit of safety. The same applies to the pre sense systems – Audi pre sense city is a standard feature which warns of pedestrians and vehicles and may initiate automatic emergency braking within system limits. Park assist, the camera-based recognition of traffic signs and hill descent assist round out the features.
    Powerful quintet: TDI and TFSI engines
    The new Audi Q5 is launching in Europe with five powerful and efficient engines: four TDI engines and one TFSI. They have added up to 20 kW (27 hp) of power, with fuel consumption however being significantly reduced. Particularly the 2.0 TDI engines in the new Q5, with outputs of 110 kW (150 hp), 120 kW (163 hp) and 140 kW (190 hp), are highly efficient. The two-liter diesel is also a highly efficient engine in the version with 140 kW (190 hp).
    The two top engines combine ample power with efficiency. The further developed 2.0 TFSI has an output of 185 kW (252 hp), yet it only consumes 6.8 liters of gasoline per 100 km (34.6 US mpg), which equates to 154 grams CO2 per km(247.8 g/mi). The also intensively revised 3.0 TDI increases output to 210 kW (286 hp) with 620 Nm (457.3 lb ft) of torque.
    Versatile and efficient: drivetrain
    The drivetrain of the mid-size SUV has been redeveloped from the ground up – this also applies to the six-speed manual transmission, seven-speed S tronic and eight-speed tiptronic (only with the 3.0 TDI). The automatic transmissions integrate a fuel-saving freewheel function. The driver controls it by a selection lever or by shift paddles on the steering wheel; in both cases, the control signals are transmitted electronically.
    The new quattro drivetrain with ultra technology is standard equipment for the 2.0 TDI with 120 kW (163 hp) and 140 kW (190 hp), and for the 2.0 TFSI with 185 kW (252 hp). Audi can deliver it as an option for the entry-level diesel engine with 110 kW (150 hp). The quattro with ultra technology always disengages the rear-axle drive whenever it is not needed, and if necessary it can proactively re-engage it. The new concept boosts efficiency without reducing traction or driving dynamics.
    In both the front-wheel drive and quattro drive versions, torque vectoring gives handling a refined touch. The intelligent software solution always delivers a dynamic, precise and controllable driving experience. For the V6 diesel, Audi can deliver an optional sport differential at the rear axle which distributes torque between the wheels as necessary and thereby provides a maximum of driving dynamics – this is another new feature in this model series and in the competitive field.
    Resolving contradictions: the chassis
    The new Audi Q5 enables handling that combines very different strengths – it is sporty while being extremely comfortable. Creating the basis for this are the newly developed five-link suspensions and also the new electromechanical power steering system. Dynamic steering is available as an option; it varies its gear ratio according to the driving speed and steering angle.
    Customers can choose from two extension stages of springs and damping. The chassis with damper control offers a very wide spread between comfort and dynamics, which the driver can select via Audi drive select. In addition to adjusting damper control, the new adaptive air suspension can be used to vary the ride height of the car body over five stages. In the Audi Q5 
    3.0 TDI, these two systems and the sport differential are bundled into a new central chassis control unit.
    In the standard system, Audi drive select, which accesses various technical modules, the driver can select one of as many as seven driving modes. The two new modes, lift/offroad and allroad, emphasize the offroad character of the Audi Q5 optimally.
    The new Audi SUV comes from the factory with 17-inch alloy wheels. The design and sport equipment lines come with 18-inch wheels, and the S line sport package and Audi design selection come with 19-inch wheels. Wheels up to 21 inches in diameter are available as options.
    The new Audi Q5 is manufactured at a newly constructed plant in Mexico. It will arrive at dealers in Germany and other European countries at the beginning of 2017. The base price at the start of sales for the Q5 2.0 TDI 120 kW quattro S tronic will be 45,100 euros.
    A New Body of Work - 400PS Audi RS3 Saloon Debuts In Paris
    The first Audi RS saloon since 2010 features the world’s most powerful five-cylinder engine now rated at 400PS First compact Audi saloon to bear an RS badge 2.5 TFSI aluminium engine with 400PS and 480Nm of torque (354 lb-ft) 0-62mph in just 4.1 seconds and optional 174mph top speed Wider track compared to the Audi A3 and signature RS design cues The most powerful five-cylinder engine on the world market         Ingolstadt/Paris, September 29, 2016 –  Now booted, and even better suited to covering ground with incredible pace and agility, the new Audi RS 3 takes to the stage in saloon form at the Paris Motor Show this week, matching blistering performance with a captivating soundtrack created by the most powerful five-cylinder engine ever to empower a series production Audi. The 400PS, 174mph RS 3 makes history as the first saloon in the brand’s history to use a transversely mounted configuration for its evocative powerplant, which has a proven track record as a seven-time winner of an ‘International Engine of the Year’ category award. 
    The new 2.5 TFSI delivers a phenomenal 400PS and 480 Nm (354.0 lb-ft) of torque, available at engine speeds between 1,700 and 5,850 revolutions per minute. Such firepower allows the the compact RS model to sprint from 0 to 62 mph in just 4.1 seconds. It can attain a maximum speed of 155mph and, upon request, Audi will increase the electronically limited top speed to 174mph. The unique sound of the five-cylinder unit intensifies an already emotionally charged driving experience originating from the ignition alternating between directly adjacent cylinders and widely spaced ones. The sound can be modified via Audi drive select.
    With its light-alloy crankcase, the five-cylinder engine is 26 kilograms lighter than before. It employs a dual injection into the intake manifold and into the combustion chambers, as well as the Audi valvelift system for variable control of the exhaust valves.
    Relentless traction, steadfast driving safety
    With lightning-fast shifting, the S tronic seven-speed dual clutch transmission transmits the power of the 2.5 TFSI to the quattro permanent all-wheel drive. Its electro-hydraulic multi-plate clutch distributes the drive torque variably between the axles. The electronic control combines superior stability with a high level of driving pleasure. The more focused the driving, the faster and more often will a large share of the torque will reach the rear axle. The result is especially agile handling characteristics.
    quattro management is integrated as a standard feature in the Audi drive select dynamic handling system, as are the steering, S tronic, engine management and the adjustable exhaust flaps. The driver can individually vary the operation of these components between the three modes comfort, auto and dynamic. The same is true for the optional RS sport suspension plus with adaptive damper control.
    Wheel-selective torque control, an intelligent software feature of the Electronic Stabilisation Control (ESC), rounds off the work of the all-wheel drive. In fast cornering it slightly brakes the inside wheels, which are under a reduced load. In this way it can transmit greater lateral power, making handling more fluid and stable. In addition, the RS-specifically tuned ESC comes with a sport mode for controlled drifting. The ESC can also be fully deactivated for even more engaging driving characteristics.
    Progressive steering, a four-link rear axle, a tight setup and lowered by 25 millimetres relative to the standard model – the chassis of the RS 3 Saloon is the perfect partner for the powerful drive system. From its stable centre position, the RS 3 Saloon deftly tackles curves and exits with superior precision.
    The front brake discs have a diameter of 370 millimetres, while eight-piston calipers with large-area linings provide optimal deceleration. Alternatively, Audi supplies carbon-fibre ceramic discs upfront.
    The rear axle is fitted with brake discs which are 310 millimetres in diameter. Standard on the RS 3 Saloon are 19-inch wheels and 235/35 tyres. 255/30 tyres are optionally available for the front axle.
    Distinctive RS design outside and inside
    The Singleframe grille with its three-dimensional honeycomb design bears the quattro logo along the bottom. Underneath, a blade extends across the entire width of the front into the side air inlets, where it forms narrow funnels for better air flow through the wheel arches. LED headlights with their distinctive daytime running light signature are standard; Audi also offers matrix LED headlights as an option.
    Compared with an A3, the front track of the RS 3 Saloon is wider by 20 millimetres – the front wheel arches are accordingly flared wider as well. At the rear axle the wheels are spaced 14 millimetres further apart compared with the standard model.
    A fixed spoiler lip on the luggage compartment lid improves the separation of air flow. A distinctive diffuser insert with vertical struts and the large oval tailpipes of the RS exhaust system terminate the rear. Audi exclusively offers the RS-specific paint colors Nardo grey and Catalunya red as options.
    The dark-toned interior welcomes the driver and passengers with illuminated door sills bearing the RS 3 logos as a standard feature. Black fine Nappa leather sport seats with RS logos on the backrests are standard. Optionally available are more contoured RS sport seats with integrated head restraints. Their covers are also diamond patterned and colour-perforated. The RS sport leather steering wheel is flattened at the bottom. Inlays at the instrument panel and at the doors complete the customary Audi Sport touches.
    Intuitive operation and high-definition displays
    The flat hierarchies and intelligently linked context menus make operation of the Audi RS 3 Saloon intuitive and ergonomic. The main control element is the rotary/push-button control on the console of the centre tunnel. With the top infotainment system MMI navigation plus with MMI touch, the terminal includes a touchpad for scrolling, zooming and writing.
    Additionally included is a free text search feature that automatically completes the user’s input after entering just a few letters. The voice control processes questions and commands formulated in everyday language.
    As standard, a seven-inch electrically extending MMI screen is fitted. The two circular instrument dials are black with red needles and white scales. The centrally positioned driver information system includes a boost pressure indicator, an oil thermometer and a lap timer.
    The fully digital Audi virtual cockpit is optionally available. On its high-resolution 12.3-inch monitor the driver can choose between three display modes. They include a special RS screen that moves the tachometer to the centre. On the left and right information appears on tyre pressure, torque and g-forces. When the transmission is operating in manual mode, a scale with a colour background prompts the driver to use the steering wheel paddle or selector lever to upshift when approaching maximum revs.
    Always online with Audi connect and Audi smartphone interface
    An LTE module gets the Audi RS 3 Saloon online. It brings on board the various services of Audi connect, including navigation with Google Earth and Google Street View, as well as information on fuel prices, the weather, travel and traffic. The information is displayed directly in the MMI, and operation is by way of the standard-equipped RS multifunction steering wheel, the rotary/push-button control and touchpad or by spoken command. Data is transmitted via the new Audi connect SIM, which is factory-installed in the car.
    With the corresponding data flat rate the customer can immediately use the services for up to three years free of charge – even in other European countries. In addition, the navigation systems include a Wi-Fi hotspot enabling passengers to surf the web with their tablets, smartphones and other mobile devices.
    The free Audi MMI connect app offers many other features, such as transferring your smartphone’s calendar to the MMI. Through Aupeo! and Napster it affords access to countless music tracks and audio books. Destinations from Google Maps, points of interest (POIs) and the entries from the “Travel” service can be transferred from your smartphone to your car’s navigation system using the app. The Audi smartphone interface brings Apple Car Play and Android Auto into the car.
    Selected apps for the phone, navigation and streaming services, for example, are then directly displayed on the MMI screen. The driver can control the apps using the various operating options in the car.
    Attractive supplementary components complete the infotainment lineup. The Audi phone box inductively charges the smartphone according to the Qi standard and connects it to the car antenna via near-field coupling for optimal reception quality. The Bang & Olufsen Sound System produces an excellent sound experience with 705 watts of power and 14 speakers.
    New portfolio of assistance systems
    The RS 3 Saloon is also at the top of its class when it comes to driver assistance systems. They keep the car at the desired distance from the vehicle in front, assist the driver when changing lanes and staying within the given lane, detect traffic signs and help avoid rear-end collisions and pedestrian accidents.
    New are the traffic jam assist, which briefly takes over the steering in slow-moving traffic up to 37mph, the emergency assist, which automatically stops the car if required, and cross traffic assist rear. The latter system looks out for crossing vehicles when pulling out of a parking space.

    William Maley

    Meet the first vehicle of Mercedes upcoming electric sub-brand

    The future at Mercedes-Benz is electric if the Generation EQ is any indication. This electric SUV is a preview of a new lineup of electric vehicles under the EQ brand. EQ if you're wondering stands for "Electric Intelligence".
    "The emission-free automobile is the future. And our new EQ brand goes far beyond electric vehicles. EQ stands for a comprehensive electric ecosystem of services, technologies and innovations," said Dieter Zetsche, CEO of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars.
    Generation EQ's design looks like a futuristic GLC-Class crossover with a large "grille" featuring blue accent lighting, large greenhouse area, no door handles or mirrors to improve aerodynamics, and a set of 21-inch alloy wheels. Inside, there is seating for four people. The dash is dominated by a 24-inch high-definition display providing more than enough details for the driver. A floating center console features touch-sensitive elements to control various aspects of the vehicle.
    Two electric motors mounted on the axles produce 400 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque. The run to 60 mph takes under five seconds. A floor-mounted 70kW lithium-ion battery pack provides a range of 310 miles. Charging can be done through a high-speed “wallbox” or inductive floor charger. Down the line, Mercedes plans on launching a 300kW charger that will provide 62 miles of range in five minutes. 
    The platform that the Generation EQ rides on is modular and will go forward to underpin a number of vehicles in the near future.
    Mercedes will launch a production version of the Generation EQ before the end of this decade.
    Source: Mercedes-Benz
    Live Pic Credit: Newspress
    Press Release is on Page 2
    Electric mobility: Mercedes-Benz flips the switch
    Generation EQ – mobility revisited September 29, 2016 - Paris/Stuttgart
    With "Generation EQ", Mercedes-Benz shows how electric cars can soon move into the fast lane: the concept vehicle, with the appearance of a sporty SUV coupé, gives a preview of a new generation of vehicles with battery-electric drives. The dynamic exterior design with its new electro-look underlines the focus on the powerful electric drive system: two electric motors, with a system output that can be increased to up to 300 kW thanks to scalable battery components, and permanent all-wheel drive deliver the guarantee of dynamic high-level performance. With a range of up to 500 kilometres and the typical Mercedes strengths of safety, comfort, functionality and connectivity, "Generation EQ" meets every demand in terms of contemporary, sustainable mobility. Also on the inside, the vehicle offers innovative solutions, including a completely new interior concept. Celebrating its world premiere at the Paris Motor Show, "Generation EQ" is the forerunner of Mercedes-Benz's new product brand for electric mobility, EQ. The name EQ stands for "Electric Intelligence" and is derived from the Mercedes-Benz brand values of "Emotion and Intelligence".
    "The mobility of the future at Mercedes-Benz will stand on four pillars: Connected, Autonomous, Shared und Electric. 'Generation EQ' is the logical fusion of all four pillars," says Dr Dieter Zetsche, CEO of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars. "The emission-free automobile is the future. And our new EQ brand goes far beyond electric vehicles. EQ stands for a comprehensive electric ecosystem of services, technologies and innovations."
    Electric-vehicle architecture for all models
    The new generation of electric vehicles will be based on an architecture developed specifically for battery-electric models, which is scalable in every respect and usable across all models: the wheelbase and track width as well as all other system components, especially the batteries, are variable thanks to the modular building- block system. The vehicle concept is thus optimised to meet every requirement of a future-oriented, battery-electric model family. The basic architecture is suitable for SUVs, saloons, coupés, cabriolets and other model series.
    Similarly to the latest series-produced models from Mercedes-Benz, the vehicle architecture builds on an intelligent multi-material mix of steel, aluminium and carbon fibre. This ensures that the requirements in terms of lightweight design, strength and cost efficiency are ideally met.
    Exterior design with new electro-look
    "Generation EQ is hot and cool," says Gorden Wagener, Head of Design at Daimler AG. "Its fascination lies in a reinterpretation of our design philosophy of sensual purity, the aim being to create an avant-garde, contemporary and distinctive electro-look. At the same time, the design of the visionary show car, which has been reduced to the essentials, reveals an alluring progressivity."
    The monolithic basic form of "Generation EQ" unites the genes of an SUV with the dynamic character of a coupé and a dash of shooting brake at the rear end. The squat, elongated greenhouse gives rise to muscular-purist proportions. The new electro-look is the result of a flowing transition from the gleaming black bonnet across the windscreen to the dark-tinted panoramic roof – an exciting contrast to the alubeam silver paintwork.
    Scarcely visible body panel joins, concealed windscreen wipers, cameras instead of exterior mirrors and an absence of conventional door handles emphasise the stretched, dynamic silhouette, making the SUV crossover appear as a unified whole while reducing its air resistance. An intentionally reduced side view, broad shoulders and large 21-inch light-alloy wheels make for a dynamic presence even before the vehicle moves off.
    Driver-oriented cockpit with new electro-look
    The focus of the driver-oriented cockpit is on simple, touch-based controls with a new electro-look consistently reflecting the exterior styling. The asymmetrical design of the instrument panel with its large, floating wide-screen display is tailored to the driver. The innovative, digital user experience differentiates "Generation EQ" from the familiar control logic in today's vehicles, while giving a peek into the future of user interaction at Mercedes-Benz.
    Interior with new, touch-based controls and no knobs
    The interior of "Generation EQ" is characterised by contemporary luxury, this finding its main expression in an all-new user interface, which combines emotive appeal with intelligence and user-friendliness while dispensing with traditional switches and knobs, except for the electric seat adjustment typical of Mercedes. Two of the three narrow spokes on the steering wheel are provided with touch controls, which are integrated into OLED displays (OLED = organic light emitting diode ). They indicate icons and symbols in the respective menus. The driver can swipe through the various menus and confirm their selection with a click.
    The 24-inch (53 x 11 cm) TFT high-definition wide-screen display presents all the relevant information, such as speed, range, driving data or navigation and map details. The innovation is apparent from the differentiation between a highly reduced and a complex display, including intermediate stages. Whether there is a low information density with a very clean look to the display, or whether extra content is on view, is left to the driver's personal preference.
    User interface design with individualised content
    The information density can be increased step-by-step from a digital display and built up into a single- or dual-tube instrument containing more detailed information and feedback on speed and range. These modular displays allow the content to be individualised. An attractive user interface design is ensured by, among other things, a world of colours in electric blue, white and rose gold – the colours of the instrument displays adapt, depending on driving mode or charging process, to allow fast and intuitive recognition.
    Bordered in rose gold, the centre console appears to float in space: dispensing with mechanical controls, it is equipped with touch-sensitive elements. Similarly to the touch controls on the steering wheel, the driver can use a finger to operate the automatic climate control and the infotainment system. As "Generation EQ" is devoid of conventional exterior mirrors, cameras are used to project an image of the traffic behind onto integrated displays in the doors. Both the door openers and the electric window lifters are touch-controlled.
    Avant-garde, functional interior
    "Generation EQ" comes with four individual seats. The reduced volume, impression of floating in space and avant-garde seat upholstery layout make for a visual lightness. A tailored sound experience is provided by speakers integrated into the head restraints. The side bolsters are covered in light-white leather, while perforations with a pixel rain look reveal a view of particles in rose gold. Stitching with a PCB look on the deep-brown centre sections produces an exciting contrast. TFT monitors for rear-seat entertainment are integrated into the front backrests.
    EQ: the new electric mobility brand from the inventor of the automobile
    EQ offers a comprehensive electric mobility ecosystem with products, services, technologies and innovations. The spectrum ranges from electric vehicles to wallboxes and charging services to home energy storage units. Mercedes-Benz will market future battery-electric vehicles under the brand name EQ. The name stands for "Electric Intelligence" and is derived from the Mercedes-Benz brand values of "Emotion and Intelligence". The new brand encompasses all key aspects for customer-focused electric mobility and extends beyond the vehicle itself. Future models will embody the essentials of state-of-the-art electric mobility: the fusion of emotively appealing and intelligent design, exceptional driving pleasure, high everyday practicality and maximum safety, a hallmark of every vehicle from the inventor of the automobile.
    The close-to-production concept vehicle "Generation EQ" marks the launch of an architecture for battery-electric vehicles across all models. Dieter Zetsche:

    "In 2007, the e-smart was a pioneer of electric motoring. We're now flipping the switch. We're ready for the launch of an electric product offensive that will cover all vehicle segments, from the compact to the luxury class."
    Both inside and outside: new light signature for electric cars
    With a new exterior and interior light signature, the inventor of the automobile presents the design trend for future electric vehicles with the star: the distinguishing mark of "Generation EQ" is the "Black Panel" front grille: the white- illuminated Mercedes star and all the light elements are integrated in this seamlessly glazed design element. The blue-illuminated surround gives a completely new interpretation of the typical Mercedes radiator grille. Illuminated LED optical fibres in electric blue produce a light show with exciting touches of colour.
    The peripheral light strip of the "Black Panel" is equally typical of "Generation EQ". Embedded in it are the white, powerful LED headlamps. Viewed from the side, the flowing E-line and beltline form a frame around the base of the mirror camera. Touches of rose gold in the chrome-plated E-line moulding and the spokes of the 21-inch wheels serve as a special eye-catching transition from interior to exterior.
    The rear lamps are of matching design, taking up the contour of the "Black Panel" and surrounded by an LED optical fibre in electric blue, which changes to red when the vehicle is moving and acts as a tail light. The central Mercedes star at the rear end is likewise illuminated in white. Similarly to the front end, the clasp-like light signature on the outside changes to orange as soon as the direction indicator is operated.
    Lighting mood: from welcome scenario to electric blue
    As the driver approaches the car, it automatically activates to welcome him or her with a specific colour mood in the interior. The welcome scenario is rounded off by digital light in the perforated interior door panels. Once the driver has taken their place, the lighting mood switches to electric blue, with the lights in the doors and on the seats dimming slowly. The wide-screen display gradually builds up to present the energy level. The navigation map shows all the destinations that can be reached on the current battery charge.
    Adaptive ambience lighting for a feel-good atmosphere
    A special feel-good atmosphere is produced by the adaptive ambience lighting on board "Generation EQ". There are lighting elements in the light strip underneath the windscreen, on the side and middle air vents, seats, door handles and interior door panels, on the centre console and around the Mercedes star in the steering wheel.
    Powerful electric drive: 300 kW total output with a range of up to 500 kilometres
    With two electric motors on the front and rear axles and a battery in the vehicle floor, "Generation EQ" embodies a powerful vehicle concept. The basis for dynamic high-level performance and safety comes courtesy of the electric all-wheel drive with axle-variable torque distribution and a battery installed deep in the vehicle floor between the axles. With a total output of up to 300 kW in the most powerful variant and a maximum torque of up to 700 Newton metres, "Generation EQ" accelerates to 100 km/h in under five seconds. In combination with the intelligent operating strategy from Mercedes-Benz, "Generation EQ" has a range of up to 500 kilometres.
    In the transfer to series production, Mercedes-Benz benefits not only from its in- house development and production expertise, but also from the Group's cross- model-series modular strategy for alternative drive systems and direct access to key components for electric mobility. The high-efficiency lithium-ion battery originates from the Daimler subsidiary Deutsche ACCUMOTIVE. Thanks to their modular design, the innovative battery systems have a model-specific total capacity of over 70 kWh.
    Convenient charging at home and on the road
    "Generation EQ" brings together the latest-generation charging technologies. The vehicle is ready both for charging at home by induction or wallbox and for fast charging. Mercedes-Benz energy storage units of the future could form an ideal symbiosis with the cordless charging system via induction or wallbox. Households that have their own photovoltaic system and which store their surplus solar power in a Mercedes-Benz energy storage unit can thus benefit from a "green" source of power that is extensively independent of the energy market.
    Significantly reduced charging times will come with the introduction of fast charging by the Combined Charging System (CCS). This European charging standard allows for fast charging with a far greater capacity than at present. Currently, charging capacities from 50 up to sometimes 150 kW are possible. In the medium to long term, a charging capacity of even up to 300 kW is planned. This would enable sufficient power for 100 locally emission-free kilometres to be recharged within five minutes.
    Driver assistance systems for maximum safety
    It goes without saying that "Generation EQ" also features the latest driver assistance systems from Mercedes-Benz. Using highly accurate maps from our partner HERE, the systems know such things as the precise curve radii as well as the position and size of a roundabout. The vehicle can then automatically adjust the speed and driving dynamics to give the driver even greater comfort and
    relaxation. EQ thus takes a further step on the road to autonomous driving, always under the premise of safety and in compliance with the statutory regulations. There is a special focus on the optimised interplay between the individual features, so- called "sensor fusion", i.e. the intelligent combination of data from different sensors. In the opinion of experts at Mercedes-Benz, this is one of the key requirements on the way to automated driving.
    Extended communication by Car-to-X technology
    But the engineers have gone one step further: for example, "Generation EQ" is equipped with Car-to-X technology and can exchange information with the infrastructure and other vehicles – an ideal basis for a series of new driver assistance features that build on existing systems and thus take a further step in the direction of accident prevention. It is also helpful for the driver to be informed about nearby recharging opportunities. As soon as "Generation EQ" realises that the destination cannot be reached on the available battery charge, it advises the driver of appropriate options on the navigation map.
    3D real-time map display from HERE
    Yet the digital interface can do considerably more: another highlight is the high- detail 3D city view with its trendsetting design. Technically, it is based on the map platform from HERE. This makes it possible, for example when searching for points of interest, for restaurants, shopping opportunities and tourist attractions to be especially highlighted. Other buildings recede elegantly into the background. A further focus in the design of the new HERE maps lies in reduced visual complexity while the vehicle is in motion. This means that the driver can see only those buildings and information that are relevant for navigation. There is an exceptional interplay between cockpit and map, with the buildings on the map reflecting details of the instrument lighting. At the same time, the map display also gives a preview of new features, especially for electric vehicles: the driver is provided with information on charging stations as well as opportunities for inductive charging along the route. The high-detail display also includes an indication of the current energy consumption along the route.
    Intelligent driver assistance
    The focus of the user interface is on optimal driver assistance, such as when the main concern is to make best possible use of the available energy in the batteries in order to achieve the best possible range. The innovative consumption display provides the driver with feedback on their driving style while drawing attention to energy-saving  possibilities.
    Additional driver incentives are conceivable: the wide-screen display can be used to tell the driver that the current range is not just sufficient to reach the desired destination, but would also allow a detour for a spur-of-the-moment visit to friends. In addition, the driver can collect bonus kilometres as a reward for especially efficient use of the traction battery – a functionality similar to the one already familiar from current models. The trick is that the collected bonus kilometres make the occupants aware of the attractions or interesting places they can reach from the current location thanks to their driving style.

    William Maley

    The Type-R is coming to the U.S.!

    If there has been one piece of forbidden Honda fruit that enthusiasts have been clamoring for a few years, it has to be the Civic Type-R. The good news is that the Type-R is coming and Honda has revealed a "concept" of it at the Paris Motor Show.
    Like most Honda/Acura concepts, the Civic Type-R Prototype is a thinly veiled preview of the production model. There is an aggressive body kit with new bumpers, hood scoop, wider fenders, 20-inch black wheels, and a large rear wing.
    No details were given on the Type-R's powerplant, but it is expected that the new model would use the current Type-R's turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. In the current Type-R, the engine produces 306 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. Expect a bit more power for the new model. A six-speed manual will route power to the front wheels. There will be a number of upgrades to the suspension, steering, brakes, and tires to handle all of this power.
    Honda will begin production of the next-generation Civic Type-R sometime next year. We'll likely have more information when Honda shows off the Civic Type-R next month at the SEMA Show in Las Vegas.
    Source: Honda
     
    Live Pic Credit: Newspress
    Press Release is on Page 2


    Radical New Honda Civic Type R Prototype Debuts in Paris; Making its North American Debut at the 2016 SEMA Show in Las Vegas
    Sep 28, 2016 - TORRANCE, Calif.
    New Civic Type R Prototype unveiled at 2016 Mondial de L'Automobile in Paris First-ever Honda-badged Type R coming to the U.S. Features wide, aggressive fascias, extended wheel arches and dramatic rear wing Bespoke "brushed aluminium" wrap provides eye-catching finish Fresh on the heels of the sales launch of the 2017 Civic Hatchback, the next-generation Civic Type R had its global debut in prototype form today at the 2016 Paris auto show. The radical new Civic Type R, with its sporty and sleek hatchback design and track-ready performance, will make its North American debut at the 2016 SEMA Show in Las Vegas, November 1-4, 2016, marking the arrival of the first-ever Honda-badged Type R in the U.S.
    The Civic Type R Prototype offers insight into the styling of the next-generation Civic Type R, which will be officially unveiled in 2017, joining the 10th Generation Civic Sedan and Civic Coupe and newly released Civic Hatchback, with the Civic Si variants also launching next year.
    "We promised the most ambitious, sportiest Civic lineup ever and we're delivering on that promise with each new Civic," said Jeff Conrad, senior vice president and general manager of the Honda Division of American Honda Motor Co., Inc. "For the first time ever in America, Honda fans and enthusiasts will have access to the ultimate in Civic performance in the form of the new Type R."
    Based on the low and wide proportion of the new Civic Hatchback, the Civic Type R Prototype is enhanced by muscular body styling and modifications to aid aerodynamic performance. The exterior is wrapped in a highly reflective, finely-grained brushed aluminum-effect finish, which is unique to the prototype car. At the front, the aggressive fascia is accentuated with a winged carbon fiber splitter and sporty red accent line. Additional slatted ducts add width to the fascia, and diamond-mesh inserts fill the sculpted air intakes.
    Honda's iconic red "H" badge, which adorns all Type R models, sits prominently on the front grille at the nose of the car. There is a new intake on the hood, with an air scoop sited centrally in a trapezoidal recess. Smoked lenses for the LED headlights, indicators and side indicator repeater lights reflect the Type R Prototype's more aggressive character.
    Carbon fiber side skirts run the length of the side sills, between 20-inch piano black alloy wheels with red accents and 245-section high-performance tires. A beefy carbon fiber diffuser runs below the wider rear fascia, which frames three fully-functional tailpipes flanked by a pair of directional strakes. The smaller diameter central tailpipe is highlighted in bright metallic red. Model-exclusive vortex generators at the rear edges of the roof point backward toward a visually striking rear wing.
    The next generation Civic Type R was developed by the joint efforts of Honda R&D teams in Europe and Japan and will be officially unveiled in production form next year. The 2017 Civic Type R will be produced exclusively at the Honda of the UK Manufacturing (HUM) plant in Swindon, the global manufacturing hub for the five-door hatchback.

    William Maley

    Volkswagen's electric future begins here

    The diesel emission scandal has left Volkswagen battered and bruised. In an effort to try and salvage their image and business, the company is going all in on electric vehicles. Before the start of the Paris Motor Show, Volkswagen revealed the I.D. concept. Volkswagen says this concept when it goes into production in 2020 will be as groundbreaking as the Beetle.
    We don't know much about the I.D. except for some details,
    About the size of a Golf Uses Volkswagen's new Modular Electric Drive Kit (MEB) Electric motor produces 125kW Total range between 400 to 600 Kilometers (about 249 to 373 Miles) Not sure if this means the vehicle will feature different battery options Fully autonomous mode for the model coming in 2025 We'll have more details when the I.D. makes its auto show debut tomorrow. 
    Source: Volkswagen
    Press Release is on Page 2


    I.D. – THE WORLD PREMIERE
    Sep 28, 2016
    Paris Motor Show - Mondial de l'Automobile 2016
    World premiere of the I.D. starts the countdown to a new era for Volkswagen Volkswagen plans for the visionary I.D. to hit the road in 2020 An ambassador: the I.D. is the first Volkswagen of a new fleet of electric cars It runs and runs: the I.D. has a range of 400 to 600 kilometres Ready for the future: the I.D. concept car demonstrates a fully automated mode for the year 2025 Key facts – the I.D. in keywords
    1. I.D. is the first Volkswagen in a completely new fleet of highly innovative electric vehicles.
    2. I.D. is immediately recognisable as a zero-emission vehicle thanks to a newly developed design DNA for electric cars.
    3. I.D. is driven by an electric motor with an output of 125 kW and has a range of between 400 and 600 kilometres on a single battery charge.
    4. I.D. has an interior that offers an entirely new spatial experience with the Open Space.
    5. I.D. will be launched as a compact electric car in 2020 parallel to the Golf.
    6. As a concept car, I.D. gives us a first tangible glimpse of fully automated driving – this mode will be offered from 2025 onwards.
    7. I.D. retracts its multifunction steering wheel into the dashpad when in fully automated mode ("I.D. Pilot").
    8. I.D. can receive parcels using a new delivery service, if its owner isn't at home.
    9. I.D. is the first compact Volkswagen based on the Modular Electric Drive Kit (MEB).
    10. Volkswagen has set itself the goal of selling a million electric cars a year by 2025.

    William Maley

    Farewell LR4, Welcome Back Discovery

    Previous Page Next Page The previous two generations of the Land Rover Discovery went by different names in the U.S. - LR3 and LR4. But tonight at an event in Paris, Land Rover introduced the next-generation Discovery and that it what it will go by when it comes to the U.S. next summer.
    Let's begin with the big story. Land Rover was able to drop 1,000 pounds out of the new Discovery. To put that into perspective, the current LR4 has a base curb weight of 5,655 pounds. How did they do it? Well, it comes down to the Premium Lightweight Architecture (PLA) that is currently underpinning the new Range Rover and Range Rover Sport. This architecture features a large amount of aluminum in its construction.
    Power will come from two engines:
    3.0L Supercharged V6 - 340 horsepower and 332 pound-feet of torque 3.0L Turbodiesel V6 - 254 horsepower and 443 pound-feet of torque Both engines come paired with an eight-speed automatic and a full-time four-wheel drive system.
    As for going off the beaten path, Land Rover has a made a number of improvements. Overall ground clearance has been increased by 1.7 inches to 11.1 inches. An optional air suspension can raise it slightly higher. The Discovery will feature All-Terrain Progress Control - basically its a low-speed cruise control system for off-roading. Other off-road bits to be aware off include the latest version of the Terrain Response 2 system and an available two-speed transfer case. 
    The exterior mimics the Discovery Sport with a smaller front grille, reshaped LED headlights, sculpting along the doors, LED taillights, and a one-piece tailgate. The interior is handsome and features a 10.2-inch touchscreen with the latest version of Jaguar Land Rover's InControl infotainment system and three-rows of seating. A clever trick that the Discovery features is the abilty to fold the second and third-row seats by using the infotainment system or an app on your smartphone.
    Safety-wise, the Discovery will be available with adaptive cruise control, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, and a surround camera system.
    Pricing for the 2017 Land Rover Discovery is as followed:
    Discovery SE - $50,985 Discovery HSE - $57,945 Discovery HSE Td6 - $59,945 Discovery HSE Luxury - $64,945 Discovery HSE Luxury Td6 - $66,945 Discovery First Edition - $74,945 Prices include a $995.00 destination charge.
    Source: Land Rover

    Press Release is on Page 2
    LAND ROVER UNVEILS THE FIFTH GENERATION FULL-SIZE DISCOVERY
    The all-new full-size Discovery embodies the Land Rover brand’s drive to go Above and Beyond, combining British desirability with an unstoppable spirit of adventure. It’s an authentic, three-row, seven-seat(1) SUV that brings new levels of capability and versatility to the Discovery family.
    A full-sized, three-row, seven-seat SUV(1) with characteristic Land Rover capability and versatility The embodiment of the Land Rover brand’s drive to go Above and Beyond, combining British desirability with an unstoppable spirit of adventure On sale from mid-2017, priced from $49,990(7) The Seven Wonders of Discovery:
    Seven principles describe the essence of Discovery and have guided its creation:

    1. The Magnificent Seven: every seat is the best seat in the house

    The new Discovery features a flexible interior, with seating – up to seven full-sized adult seats(1) – that’s instantly configurable from Apple and Android smartphones using the world-first remote Intelligent Seat Fold technology(2,5)
    2. A much loved member of the family for the last 26 years
    Advanced driver assistance technologies(4) provide the driver and occupants peace of mind Premium interior combines leading design with durable, high-quality materials and space for the whole family 3. King of the hill: a true Land Rover with the brand’s characteristic capability on a variety of surfaces, terrains and weather conditions
    Full-sized Land Rover SUV architecture delivers impressive all-terrain capability Lightweight aluminum construction cuts approximately 1,000 lbs(3) from the weight of the outgoing LR4, delivering enhanced on- and off-road performance 8,201 lb. towing capacity(10) and Advanced Tow Assist(4) take the stress out of difficult reversing maneuvers 4. British creativity: designed with charm and sophistication loved by the world
    Design retains key Discovery family cues, adding optimized proportions and sophisticated surfaces
    5. Storage addiction: discover the space for everything
    82.7 cu. ft. of luggage space and clever storage to satisfy an active lifestyle and family needs alike
    6. Connects every generation: Smart features that make life easier
    All-new Discovery comes equipped with up to nine USB ports, six 12-volt charging points and an in-car 3G WiFi hotspot for up to eight devices(12)
    7. After the roads end: reaching threatened habitats and vulnerable people
    New Discovery will continue the Land Rover brand’s work in humanitarian aid and conservation projects around the world
    (PARIS) – September 28, 2016 – The all-new full-size Discovery embodies the Land Rover brand’s drive to go Above and Beyond, combining British desirability with an unstoppable spirit of adventure. It’s an authentic, three-row, seven-seat(1) SUV that brings new levels of capability and versatility to the Discovery family.
    Everyday ingenuity has been at the heart of the Discovery for the last 27 years. The new Discovery signals the transformation from cogs to code with more than 1.2 million owners with us on every step of the journey.
    The fifth-generation model benefits from the strong and light full-size Land Rover SUV architecture, delivering comfort and adaptability like no other.
    The all-new Discovery is ready for the digital age. Smart technology features keep families connected and confident on a variety of surfaces, terrains, and weather conditions; ensuring their destination is reached.
    Gerry McGovern, Land Rover Chief Design Officer said: “The all-new Discovery redefines the large SUV. The Land Rover design and engineering teams have revolutionized the Discovery DNA to create a highly desirable, extremely versatile and hugely capable premium SUV. We truly believe the result is a radical departure in design that will introduce the Discovery Family to a new, wider customer base.”
    Revolutionary design
    The all-new Discovery was previewed by the Discovery Vision Concept, which showcased the future direction of the entire Discovery family when it debuted at the New York Auto Show in 2014; it represented a radical departure for the most versatile SUV from Land Rover. The revolutionary design gives Discovery a dynamic appearance with sophisticated surfaces and precisely engineered details designed to resonate with customers on an emotional level.
    Gerry McGovern, Land Rover Chief Design Officer said: “Design creates an emotional connection between our customers and our vehicles. Our clear design strategy means our vehicles are instantly recognizable and communicate the values of Land Rover that our customers love. The flawless volume and proportions, sophisticated surfaces and precise detailing of the all-new Discovery, beautifully combine with engineering integrity to create a premium SUV that will resonate with today’s customers.”
    The Discovery family has always had a spirit of adventure. The new model provides a dramatic reinterpretation of the 27 years of heritage and practical DNA Discovery is best known for, and combines it with a sophisticated design that pays homage to previous models without being restrained by them.
    Trademark design features include the stepped roofline, which has identified each of the four previous generations of Discovery and provides an elegant solution to a practical need. The stepped profile optimizes headroom for passengers travelling in the third row of seats(1). It also accommodates the customary stadium seating configuration Discovery is best known for, which sees each row of seats positioned higher than the one in front, ensuring every seat is the best seat in the house.
    Design and engineering integrity from Land Rover ensures the fifth generation Discovery is able to accommodate seven full-sized adults in an SUV body measuring just over 16 feet in length (4,970mm). Most similar-sized competitors provide 5+2 seating, but the new Discovery is designed for 95th percentile adults to sit comfortably in its rearmost seats, providing complete interior flexibility. Each of the third-row seats(1) incorporate ISOFIX mounting points (four in total), so families with children have the freedom to put child safety seats in the most appropriate location for any journey(13).
    Inside, the all-new Discovery continues the design revolution started by the Discovery Sport, where customers can specify a range of premium materials including luxurious Windsor leather upholstery and natural oak veneers.
    A limited-run ‘First Edition’ model showcases the very best of the new model. Only 529 examples will be available in the United States with exclusive features including unique etched map detailing on the aluminum trim for the doors and dashboard, unique badges, bold color choices and a comprehensive list of standard equipment. 
    The optional Dynamic Design Pack gives the fifth generation Discovery a more purposeful, clean appearance both inside and out, with features including a contrast roof, athletic front and rear bumper designs, luxurious leather upholstery and a sports-inspired steering wheel and pedals setting it apart.
    Connecting every generation of the family
    The all-new Discovery offers an available world-first Intelligent Seat Fold technology, allowing owners to reconfigure the second- and third-row seats with minimal effort; using controls at the rear of the vehicle, the central touchscreen, or even remotely – via a smartphone app – as part of the Land Rover InControl® Touch Pro services(2,5).
    The innovative feature allows owners to rearrange the seats from inside the store while they wait to pay for large or bulky items, ensuring the vehicle is perfectly configured to accommodate their purchases when they go to leave.
    All three rows are available with heated seats – heated and cooled in rows one and two – while massage seats are available for the driver and front passenger to optimize comfort on long journeys.
    Enjoying the spacious interior of the all-new Discovery is made easier by another thoughtful Land Rover innovation. On vehicles equipped with air suspension, Auto Access Height technology reduces the ride-height by up to 1.57 in. as passengers prepare to enter or exit the vehicle.
    Alongside the spacious and flexible seating layout, the other key to the new model’s versatility is the optional Land Rover InControl® Touch Pro infotainment system(6,11). Vehicles equipped with InControl Touch Pro benefit from a large 10-inch touchscreen positioned high on the center console(5,8). This development enabled Land Rover designers to reduce the number of switches on the center console by a third, delivering a clean and uncluttered appearance.
    Crisp graphics and easy-to-navigate menus incorporate the latest navigation and entertainment technologies including door-to-door navigation, which can share directions to a paired smartphone to help owners complete journeys on foot(8). Seamless iOS and Android connectivity combine with a 17-speaker Meridian digital surround system and 3G WiFi to provide the ultimate listening experience, whether streaming songs online or playing music directly from a connected device.
    Up to six 12V charging points ensure the new Discovery is perfectly equipped to cope with the demands of the most connected owners and their passengers, while as many as seven USB sockets (up to nine when the rear seat entertainment is fitted) allow passengers in each row to power their smartphones or tablets simultaneously.
    Another technology feature for active families is the Activity Key wristband – first debuted on the 2017 Jaguar F-PACE – which allows customers to enjoy sports and active hobbies without having to carry the standard key fob and worry about the risk of damage or loss. Holding the waterproof Activity Key up to the ‘D’ in the Discovery badge on the rear tailgate simultaneously locks the vehicle and disables the ordinary key, which can be left safely inside. This leaves customers free to run, swim, ride or play without worrying about the security of their vehicle.
    Storage addiction
    At every stage of its development Land Rover has designed the all-new Discovery around the needs of its customers. This is evident when you look around the cabin. Design and engineering teams at Land Rover have an addiction to storage; this resulted in a host of convenient interior storage solutions for owners, including:
    Storage in the central console capable of holding pair of two-liter beverage containers. A central armrest cubby large enough to house five tablet computers with a lid that hinges through 180 degrees to function as an armrest even when open Small-item stowage behind the fold-down Climate Control panel A flush-fitting, push-operated, bag hook in the front passenger footwell capable of securing shopping bags The effort put into developing the first-rate cabin storage in the all-new Discovery has been matched by the thought put into its luggage space. The premium SUV provides 82.7 cu. ft. of load capacity, or 45 cu. ft. behind row two, and the new optional dual-purpose Powered Inner Tailgate provides all the versatility expected from a vehicle wearing the Discovery badge.
    When raised, the fold-down panel at the leading edge of the load area operates as a practical load restraint, but when lowered, the 11-inch overhanging section doubles as a useful bench for event seating or changing muddy footwear, all under the shelter provided by the new one-piece tailgate. This simple device replicates the functionality of the horizontally split tailgate fitted to previous Land Rover vehicles.
    Comfort and capability
    The all-new Discovery retains renowned Land Rover all-terrain capability thanks to its combination of excellent off-road geometry and advanced driver assistance technologies(4); together, they enhance the everyday usability of the new model.
    Ground clearance is rated at 11.1-inches – an increase of 1.7 inches from the LR4 – while a maximum wading depth of 35.4-inches – an increase of 7.9-inches – provides unrivalled confidence when tackling waterlogged trails(4).
    A comprehensive suite of available off-road driving technologies ensures the all-new Discovery maintains its supreme all-terrain capability and is easy to access for even inexperienced drivers. The Land Rover multi-mode Terrain Response® 2 system optimizes a range of settings, from throttle sensitivity to gear change characteristics, suiting the driving conditions at the turn of a rotary controller(4). Terrain Response 2 can even select the optimum setting automatically if drivers are unsure of the best choice.
    When tackling particularly challenging terrain, All-Terrain Progress Control (ATPC) can be programed to maintain a suitable crawl speed as chosen by the driver. The clever technology allows the driver to concentrate solely on steering the vehicle as they negotiate obstacles, without the distraction of operating the throttle or brake pedals, and can also be used from a standstill to help when pulling away on slippery, low traction, surfaces(4).
    The all-new Discovery also benefits from lightweight and durable Land Rover aluminum architecture. Similar to the construction on Range Rover and Range Rover Sport, the all-new Discovery cuts more than 1,000 pounds from the weight of the outgoing LR4, which used steel ladder construction(3). This weight savings, coupled with an advanced integral link rear suspension, delivers improved handling characteristics and on-road performance without compromising the superb ride comfort that has defined generations of Land Rover vehicles.
    Another Land Rover trademark carried over into the all-new model, is a Command Driving Position which helps owners enjoy the vehicle’s enhanced breadth of capability with confidence, on variety of surfaces, terrains and weather conditions, by providing excellent visibility(4).
    This confidence extends to towing capability, which has been a hallmark of every generation of Discovery since it was used to tow a train at its original launch in 1989. In the US, the all-new Discovery has a maximum towing capacity of 8,201 pounds(3). This figure is enhanced with the introduction of some clever technology developed to make the towing with the Discovery more accessible than ever.
    Advanced Tow Assist allows owners to complete potentially difficult reversing maneuvers when towing trailers with ease(4). The driver’s assistance feature manages the tricky counter-steering required to position trailers accurately when reversing. The driver simply guides the trailer into the desired space with the rotary controller for the Terrain Response 2 system; this is done using responsive guidance lines overlaid on the rear-facing camera feed which are displayed on the central touchscreen, taking the stress out of an otherwise tricky task(4).
    A choice of powertrains
    The all-new Discovery is powered with the option of both a petrol and diesel engine familiar to the Jaguar Land Rover line-up; each of which is paired with a smooth and responsive ZF eight-speed automatic gearbox. They include:
    The 340-HP supercharged 3.0L petrol V-6 carried over from the LR4. With 332 lb.-ft. of torque on demand, the petrol V-6 delivers high-end responsiveness and excellent passing power. Shared with the Range Rover and Range Rover Sport, the all-new Discovery benefits from the introduction of a 254HP turbocharged diesel V-6 that delivers 443 lb.-ft. of torque from as little as 1,750 rpm. The all-new Discovery will be on sale at North American retailers from mid-2017, starting at $49,990(7). For more information, visit a local retailer or log on to LandRoverUSA.com.
    (1) Third row seating is an optional feature on select Discovery models.
    (2) The Intelligent Seat Fold feature is included on vehicles equipped with optional seven position power seating.
    (3) Depending on the selected Discovery vehicle trim and options.
    (4) These systems are not a substitute for driving safely with due care and attention and will not function under all circumstances, speeds, weather and road conditions, etc. Driver should not assume that these systems will correct errors of judgment in driving.  Please consult the owner’s manual or your local authorized Land Rover Retailer for more details.
    (5) Land Rover InControl® Remote™ app and data plan with a mobile network operator is required to remotely interact with your vehicle. Intelligent Seat Fold feature on app is included on vehicles equipped with optional seven position power seating.
    (6) Do not use Land Rover InControl® features under conditions that will affect your safety or the safety of others. Driving while distracted can result in loss of vehicle control.
    (7) All prices shown are Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price. Excludes $995 destination/handling charge, tax, title, license, and retailer fees, all due at signing, and optional equipment. Retailer price, terms and vehicle availability may vary. See your local authorized Land Rover Retailer for details.
    (8) Driving while distracted can result in loss of vehicle control. Do not operate, adjust or view the navigation or multimedia systems under conditions that will affect your safety or the safety of others. Only use mobile phones and other devices, even with voice commands, when it is safe to do so. 
    (9) Discovery vehicle equipped with the 340HP petrol V-6.
    (10 Land Rover InControl® Touch Pro is standard on the HSE trim level and above.
    (11) The Wi-Fi hotspot is intended for passenger use only. Land Rover InControl features may require an additional subscription with separate terms and conditions.
    (12)Please consult owner's manual or your local authorized Land Rover Retailer for details regarding installation of child safety seats
    Previous Page Next Page

    William Maley

    Kia's box on wheels gets a bit of a boost

    A few months ago, we reported on a Kia ad that sneakily revealed that a turbocharged Soul would be arriving this winter. Now Kia has spilled the beans on the 2017 Soul Turbo before its official debut at the Paris Motor Show next week. 
    As was speculated, the Soul Turbo will use the 1.6L turbocharged-four used in the used in the Forte Koup and Forte5 (Cee'd GT and Pro_Cee'd GT in Europe). It produces 201 horsepower and will go through a new seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. 0-60 mph takes about 7.5 seconds. Outside, the turbo model features new bumpers, slightly tweaked front grille, and a new set of 18-inch aluminum wheels. 
    Kia will begin sales of the 2017 Soul Turbo later this year in Europe. Expect Kia to provide details on the U.S.-spec model at the LA Auto Show in November or sometime sooner.
    Source: Kia
    Press Release is on Page 2


    Kia introduces powerful new Soul 1.6 T-GDI and updates Soul model line-up
    New Soul variant powered by 201 bhp 1.6-litre T-GDI Engine paired with fast-shifting seven-speed double-clutch transmission Design complements enhanced performance New safety features, and Android AutoTM and Apple CarPlayTM integration Upgraded Soul and Soul 1.6 T-GDI on sale in UK from late 2016 Kia has announced details of a range of upgrades to the Soul compact SUV, and the introduction of a powerful new 201 bhp 1.6-litre T-GDI engine variant, the most powerful Soul ever engineered by the Korean brand.
    The Soul has received a light update to its exterior and interior design, and is now available with new safety and infotainment technologies. The upgraded Soul and Soul 1.6 T-GDI will be available in the UK from late 2016 and will have its public unveiling at the 2016 Paris Motor Show (Mondial de l'Automobile) on 29 September.
    Soup for the Soul: Kia launches new 201 bhp Soul 1.6 T-GDI
    Kia has introduced a new version of the Soul to the line-up - the new Soul 1.6 T-GDI.
    Powered by Kia's 201 bhp 1.6-litre T-GDI (turbo gasoline direct injection) engine from the cee'd GT and pro_cee'd GT, the new Soul 1.6 T-GDI is the most powerful Soul that Kia has produced. With the new engine, the car will accelerate from 0-to-60 mph in 7.5 seconds, with a top speed of 122 mph and produce CO2 emissions of 156 g/km.
    The engine transmits its power to the front wheels through Kia's advanced new seven-speed double-clutch transmission (7DCT), providing instant gear changes and decisive acceleration at all speeds. A new Drive Mode Selector - available across the Soul range on models equipped with the 7DCT - lets Soul T-GDI drivers switch between Normal, Eco and Sport modes, each subtly adapting the level of steering assistance available, to allow for normal, light or heavy steering depending on driver preference and driving conditions.
    The Soul 1.6 T-GDI is differentiated from conventional models in the Soul range with a series of exterior modifications, including a bolder front bumper and air intake grille design, twin exhaust pipes at the rear, and its own 10-spoke 18-inch aluminium alloy wheel design. Completing the sportier appearance of the T-GDI model are red highlights to the front bumper and side sills.
    Kia has also made changes to the interior of the Soul 1.6 T-GDI. The powerful new model features its own distinctive cabin colour scheme, with black cloth and leather upholstery paired with orange stitching. A D-shaped steering wheel and orange highlights throughout the cabin, including orange metal paint on the gearstick, add further purpose to the design of the Soul 1.6 T-GDI's interior.
    The Soul 1.6 T-GDI is available with larger brakes than the standard Soul. The car is fitted with 17" ventilated front discs, the solid rear discs remain the same size. The revised brakes reduce the stopping distance of the Turbo model slightly, to 35.3 metres when stopping from 60 mph (down from 35.5 metres), with the changes primarily made to ensure fade-free braking power under consistent use.
    Design and technology upgrades to the Kia Soul range
    The Kia Soul range has received a series of upgrades to further enhance its appeal among buyers.
    These include updates to its exterior appearance, with remodelled front and rear bumpers with a metallic skid plate for a more robust appearance. The Soul's front bumper houses optional bi-function HID (high-intensity discharge) headlights with LED daytime running lights, and an updated finish to Kia's signature ‘tiger-nose' grille. The rear of the car features newly-designed fog lamps and reflectors for greater illumination for following road users.
    The ambience of the cabin has also been enhanced with the introduction of new gloss black and metallic highlights and switchgear. In addition, new exterior features emphasise the car's compact SUV credential with a gloss black finish to front and rear wheel arches, and a body kit for front and rear bumpers and side sills on selected models.
    New technologies will further enhance the appeal of the Soul, with buyers able to choose from Kia's latest 5.0-, 7.0- or 8.0-inch colour touchscreen infotainment HMI (human-machine interface). The new HMI systems provide smartphone-style touchscreen control over the audio-visual navigation system, and is available with Apple CarPlayTM (for iPhone 5 or newer) and Android AutoTM (for Android 5.0 Lollipop or newer) for full smartphone integration. The new HMI systems also house a rear-view parking camera, and a new USB port has been added to the rear of the cabin, allowing back-seat passengers to charge mobile devices on the move. The front passenger seat is also now available with eight-way power adjustment, and drivers can benefit from new rain-sensing windscreen wipers and, in models equipped with 7DCT, the new Drive Mode Selector.
    Safety is also improved in the Soul with the adoption of Blind Spot Detection (BSD) with Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA) for the first time, giving drivers better all-round visibility on motorways and during low-speed parking manoeuvres.
    2017 Kia Soul and Soul 1.6 T-GDI on sale in UK from late 2016
    The upgraded Kia Soul and the new Soul 1.6 T-GDI will be available from Kia's UK dealer network in late 2016 following its unveiling in Paris. Full UK specification and pricing will be released at launch.

    William Maley

    Looking for an alternative to a luxury crossover, Mercedes-Benz has an option for you (in Europe)

    Mercedes-Benz has decided to crash luxury off-road wagon party that Audi and Volvo are putting on by introducing the E-Class All-Terrain. 
    The All-Terrain sets itself apart from the standard E-Class wagon with new bumpers, plastic surrounds for the wheel arches, and a wheel/tire package for this specific model. The ride height has been raised by an inch, but the air suspension system can raise the vehicle by about 0.3 inches. Mercedes' 4Matic all-wheel drive system features an 'All Terrain' mode that allows the vehicle to go a little bit further into the bush. 
    For the time being in the UK, the E-Class All-Terrain will only be offered with a 2.0L turbodiesel-four with 192 horsepower and 252 pound-feet of torque. This is paired with a nine-speed automatic transmission. Engines for other European markets haven't been announced.
    Mercedes-Benz will debut the E-Class All-Terrain later this month at the Paris Motor Show, with sales beginning sometime next year. Don't hold your breath on the All-Terrain coming to the U.S. anytime soon.
    Source: Mercedes-Benz
    Press Release is on Page 2
    Stuttgart.  From unpaved tracks to steep, serpentine snow-bound roads, the new E-Class All-Terrain can tackle routes where conventional estates have to give up, thanks to greater ground clearance and 4MATIC all-wheel drive. Rugged styling and flared wheel arches also give it a tough look. The E-Class All-Terrain makes its world premiere at the Paris Motor Show 2016. The first cars will arrive in the UK from spring 2017, while pricing and specification will be announced in early 2017.
    “No E-Class has ever been as versatile as the All-Terrain. The new model combines a striking look in SUV style with the intelligent space concept of the estate. This is coupled with lots of innovative safety features and the multi-award-winning E-Class interior,” said Ola Källenius, Member of the Daimler management board responsible for Sales and Marketing of Mercedes Benz Cars. “With 4MATIC all-wheel drive as a standard feature and increased ground clearance thanks to the AIR BODY CONTROL multi-chamber air suspension, the All-Terrain is a flexible all-rounder – for unpaved roads, family and leisure time.”
    Thanks to off-road styling elements the All-Terrain has a powerful and robust appearance which also distinguishes it from the classic estate. Dynamism and modern luxury unite to make the All-Terrain an ambassador for the Mercedes-Benz design philosophy of the sensuous clarity that defines modern luxury.
    An eye-catching feature of the front is the SUV-style two-fin grille with the star integrated in the centre. The distinctive front bumper and lower panelling, electroplated in silver-chrome, also contribute to the robust appearance. The top part of the three-part front bumper is painted in the body colour and the lower part comes in grained black plastic.
    At the side, the black wheel arch covers are a distinctive feature that emphasise the car’s all-terrain character. This also applies to the black side skirt that features a chrome trip strip. Three exclusive alloy wheel sets in 19- and 20-inch formats with higher sidewalls give the vehicle a confident look, greater ground clearance and enhanced comfort on rough roads.
    The All-Terrain also features a model-specific three-part bumper at the rear with the top part painted in body colour and the lower part in grained black plastic. Further features typical of an SUV include robust load sill protection and an underbody guard electroplated in silver-chrome.
    The interior includes aluminium-carbon look trim that is exclusive to the All-Terrain, stainless steel sports pedals and floor mats with All-Terrain lettering. The equipment is based on the AVANTGARDE interior line, while EXCLUSIVE and designo appointments are optionally available [UK details are to be confirmed]. The new model boasts all the load compartment flexibility of the E-Class estate, such as the rear seat cargo position and a standard 40:20:40 split-folding rear seat back. All E-Class innovations relating to safety, comfort and convenience are available.
    The All-Terrain will be launched as an E 220 d 4MATIC (143 kW/194 hp) with the newly developed four-cylinder diesel engine. A short time later a variant with a six-cylinder diesel engine will follow. Both models come with the new 9G-TRONIC nine-speed automatic transmission as standard.
    Technical data at a glance:
    E 220 d 4MATIC Number of cylinders/arrangement 4/in-line Displacement (cc) 1950 Rated output (kW/hp at rpm) 143/194 at 3800 Rated torque (Nm at rpm) 400 at 1600-2800 Combined NEDC fuel consumption (l/100 km) 5.1–5.2 Combined CO2 emissions (g/km) 137-139 Efficiency class A Acceleration 0-100 km/h (s) 8.0 Top speed (km/h) 232 Figures for version with 9G-TRONIC,
    The All-Terrain has DYNAMIC SELECT as standard. This enables five driving programmes to be selected with different engine, transmission, ESP® and steering characteristics. A special model-specific feature is the All-Terrain driving programme, which offers settings for off-road driving and was derived from the GLE. The even more comfortable suspension configuration and the large wheels with higher sidewalls noticeably further increase ride comfort on rough roads compared with the E-Class.
    Selecting the All-Terrain driving programme with the driving programme switch raises the chassis via the standard AIR BODY CONTROL by +20 mm up to a speed of 35 km/h. The thresholds for ESP®, active yaw control and acceleration skid control (ASR) are adjusted accordingly. The All-Terrain driving programme has a special indicator in the vehicle display. Information displayed there includes the steering angle, the vehicle level (position of the air suspension), the angle of slope and the angle of inclination, the accelerator/brake position and a compass.
    Thanks to air suspension three levels from 0 to +35 mm are selectable. Independent of the driving programme the highest level can also be selected manually with the level button on the centre console. The E-Class All-Terrain is 29 millimetres higher than the E-Class Estate – 14 mm of which is due to the tyres’ larger height/width ratio and 15 mm to the normal driving level of the air suspension. The ground clearance is 121 to 156 mm.

    Drew Dowdell

    Opel's mini-car Karl gets a mini-makeover into a crossover called the Karl Rocks

    Previous Page Next Page Ahead of the 2016 Paris Motor Show, Opel gave an early look at a new variant of their Opel Karl city-car called the Karl Rocks.
    The Karl Rocks, gains the looks of a small SUV with a raise in ride height by 18mm (0.7 inches), added perimeter body cladding, integrated skid pads, and functional roof rails.  The interior is largely carryover from the standard Karl except for a new seat fabric exclusive to the Rocks.
    Mechanically, the Karl Rocks maintains the same powertrain as a standard Karl, with a 1.0 liter 3-cylinder which produce 75 hp. Transmissions are either a 5-speed manual, or a 5-speed EasyTronic (a single clutch 5-speed manual transmission that has automatic gear shifting) that gives the functionality of an automatic transmission without as much additional cost.  No all-wheel drive is available.
    Three entertainment systems are available, a base radio, and two versions of Opel's Intellilink. Both Intellilink options feature Android Auto and Apple CarPlay
    The Opel Karl Rocks goes on sale in Europe later this year.  Could there be a Chevrolet Spark version in the works? If the trademark filing for the Chevrolet Spark Activ is any indicator, we think yes. 
    Source: Opel Media
    Press Release on Page 2
     
    The New KARL ROCKS: SUV-Makeover for Opel’s Entry Level Model
     
    ·         SUV-inspired: Raised ride height and rugged body parts for the urban jungle
    ·         Extrovert: The wild Opel KARL with expressive exterior is perfect fit for individualists
    ·         Connected: Opel OnStar and Radio R 4.0 IntelliLink available
    ·         In the spotlight: KARL ROCKS to celebrate world premiere at Paris Motor Show
     
     
    Rüsselsheim.  Are you looking for a small car that has the stylish looks and upmarket features of a much bigger and often much pricier vehicle? Or are you looking for a mini car that can handle the daily challenges of the urban jungle while simultaneously dazzling onlookers with its trendy SUV look and feel? If this is the case, the new Opel KARL ROCKS should appeal to you.
     
    The new car, which is set to celebrate its world premiere at the Paris Motor Show (Booth 501 in Hall 5-2; October 1-16), bears a strong resemblance to a true SUV and shares many virtues connected with this vehicle class such as an elevated seating position that enables better visibility and easier access to the cabin or an outstanding connectivity offer. Furthermore, the new Opel KARL ROCKS maintains the unquestionable practicality of the Opel KARL with five doors, five seats, compact dimensions and a maximum trunk space over 1,000 liters up to the roof making it the ideal vehicle for a broad audience of city dwellers. Like KARL, the rocking version will thus be big on everything – except size and price.
     
    Clever design tweaks set the KARL ROCKS, available for order from the end of the year, apart from most of its A-segment rivals and in fact also from its tamer sibling. The functional silver roof rails, rugged front and rear bumpers with integrated skid pads (the former also including fog light), front and rear wheelhouse moldings and unique 15-inch bi-color look alloy wheels blend in perfectly with typical Opel design cues such as the Opel blade that sweeps dynamically up towards the rear. Combined with the sloping roofline this creates a dynamic, sporty appearance that links the KARL ROCKS to the KARL while simultaneously giving it a distinct rugged look.
     
    The car’s off-road character and outgoing personality are further emphasized by an 18-mm increase in ride height enabling better visibility in dense urban traffic or when admiring the view while cruising along country roads. The raised ride height also brings further advantages with it – KARL ROCKS can also venture off tarmacked roads and negotiate uneven surfaces better. Furthermore, the 18-mm increase facilitates ingress and egress.
     
    The outdoor atmosphere created by the exterior design continues on the inside of the car with the unique “Favo” fabric upholstery for the seats. The design is reminiscent of honeycomb and exclusively available for the KARL ROCKS. Elsewhere, front door sill plates and the high gloss frame for the standard Radio R 300 or the optional Radio R 4.0 IntelliLink system, which brings the world of smartphones to the KARL ROCKS via Apple CarPlay or Android Auto and enables navigation via Apple Maps or Google Maps, add to the new level of sophistication. Alternatively, Navi 4.0 IntelliLink offers an integrated navigation system. The connectivity offering of the KARL ROCKS is rounded off by the availability of Opel’s personal connectivity and service assistant Opel OnStar, making it and its tamer sibling the best connected mini cars on the market.
     
    However, KARL ROCKS has much more to offer than its enticing looks and stylish interior – it is also just a practical as the Opel KARL. Five doors guarantee easy access to the front and rear seats while the five seats ensure that even families can enjoy Opel’s stylish mini car with SUV flair. And when needed, the rear seats, with a standard 40/60 folding split, can be folded down completely giving the KARL ROCKS an impressive total trunk space of 1,013 liters up to the roof.
     
    Furthermore, Opel’s wild child comes with all of the safety and comfort features available in the regular KARL. City mode reduces steering effort at the push of a button (from Enjoy), greatly facilitating maneuvering in heavy city traffic. Park Assist is also available and assists the driver during parking by issuing an acoustic warning as the car approaches obstacles when reversing. Cruise control with speed limiter regulates driving speeds, which is extremely helpful in complicated urban traffic and in residential areas with a 30 km/h speed limit.
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    William Maley

    Mercedes-AMG decides its time to drop the top on the GT

    Previous Page Next Page Auto show season is upon us and automakers are beginning to reveal their various debuts. For example, Mercedes-AMG has pulled the curtain back on the AMG GT and GT-C Roadsters that will officially debut at the Paris Motor Show later this month.
    Like the GT coupe, the GT Roadster feature the same 4.0L biturbo V8 with different states of tune. The GT Roadster punches out 469 horsepower and 465 pound-feet of torque, and the GT-C features 550 horsepower and 502 pound-feet. Those with keen eyes will note the two roadsters produce more power than their coupe counterparts (GT: 456 horsepower and 443 pound-feet; GT-S: 503 horsepower and 479 pound-feet). Why? Our hunch is due to the added weight. Mercedes isn't disclosing that information at the moment. Both come paired with a seven-speed dual-clutch Speedshift transmission. 0-60 mph times are 3.9 seconds for the GT and 3.7 for the GT-C. 
    The GT-C is an interesting beast. It features remapped programming, a performance exhaust system, a wider rear track, electronic limited-slip differential, and rear-wheel steering. With all of the parts, the GT-C roadster appears to appeal to those hardcore folks who want to put the top down.
    The GT Roadster uses a soft-top that is available in three colors. The top can be put down or up in 11 seconds and at speed up to 31 mph. There is also the active air management system that uses vertical louvers behind the front grille. At low speeds, the louvers close to reduce drag. At higher speeds, the louvers open to provide additional cooling.
    “With our two Roadster models, we are strategically expanding the AMG GT family by two exciting variants. With the AMG GT C Roadster, we are also introducing a new model variant to which we have transferred main performance-related components from our top sports car, the AMG GT R. The result: a highly dynamic driving experience in a very exclusive ambience, coupled with that pure roadster feeling,” said Tobias Moers, chairman of Mercedes-AMG in a statement.
    Mercedes says the AMG GT Roadster will arrive in the U.S. next fall.
    Source: Mercedes-AMG 
    Press Release is on Page 2
    The new Mercedes-AMG GT Roadster and Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster
    Open-top driving performance September 14, 2016 - Affalterbach.
    Mercedes-AMG is blowing even more fresh air into the AMG GT family. Shortly after the world premiere of the AMG GT R, AMG is presenting two exciting roadster variants of the two-seater sports car. Alongside the AMG GT Roadster, the AMG GT C Roadster enhances the portfolio with a completely new model variant. With an output of 550 hp and peak torque of 502 lb-ft, the AMG GT C is the most powerful new Roadster variant and uses some of the technical refinements of the AMG GT R. These include active rear axle steering and the electronically controlled rear axle locking differential. In combination with AMG RIDE CONTROL sport suspension, the AMG GT C Roadster guarantees dynamic performance at the very highest level. The AMG GT C Roadster also takes its lead from the top AMG GT R sports car where muscular proportions are concerned: the wider rear fenders create space for a wider track and wider wheels at the rear axle, allowing for excellent traction and even higher cornering speeds. The variable performance exhaust system also ensures an authentic V8 sound from the AMG Roadster.
    The new Roadsters make hallmark AMG driving performance an even more intensive experience. "With our two Roadster models, we are strategically expanding the AMG GT family by two exciting variants. With the AMG GT C Roadster, we are also introducing a new model variant to which we have transferred main performance-related components from our top sports car, the AMG GT R. The result: a highly dynamic driving experience in a very exclusive ambience, coupled with that pure roadster feeling," says Tobias Moers, Chairman of Mercedes-AMG GmbH.
    With the two Roadster variants the Mercedes-AMG GT family has now increased to five members. The two new sports cars with fabric soft tops likewise have the technical genes for which AMG is famous. These include a lightweight and torsionally rigid aluminum bodyshell plus powerful and efficient V8 biturbo engines. The entry level into the Roadster world is the AMG GT with an output of 469 hp.
    The AMG GT C Roadster adds a completely new output level. With 550 hp it is the more powerful of the two new open-top sports cars.
    Technical data at a glance:
      Mercedes-AMG GT Roadster Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster Engine 4.0-liter V-8 with twin turbochargers and direct injection 4.0-liter V-8 with twin turbochargers and direct injection Displacement 3,982 cc 3,982 cc Output 469 hp at 6,000 rpm 550 hp at 5,750-6,750 rpm Peak torque 465 lb-ft at 1,700-5,000 rpm 502 lb-ft at 1,900-5,750 rpm Drive system Rear-wheel drive Rear-wheel drive Transmission AMG SPEEDSHIFT® DCT 7-speed dual-clutch transmission AMG SPEEDSHIFT® DCT 7-speed dual-clutch transmission Acceleration 0-60 mph 3.9 s 3.7 s Top speed 188 mph 196 mph Rear-axle limited-slip differential mechanical electronically controlled Suspension AMG Sport Suspension AMG RIDE CONTROL Sport Suspension with adaptive, adjustable damping Wheels front / rear 9.0" x 19" / 11" x 19" 9.0" x 19" / 12.0" x 20" Tires front / rear 255/35 R 19 / 
    295/35 R 19 265/35 R19 / 
    305/30 R 20 Brake discs front/rear 14.2" / 14.2" 15.4" / 14.2" Transmission modes four: C, S, S+, I five: C, S, S+, I, RACE The AMG GT C Roadster not only delivers more output and torque, it also impresses with numerous technical highlights from the Mercedes-AMG GT R for even more dynamic performance. Like the AMG GT R, the AMG GT C Roadster is recognizable by its wide, muscular rear end and large wheels. Other technical measures include the wider rear track and active rear axle steering.
    The AMG GT C Roadster is also equipped with a lithium-ion battery and has more exclusive appointments. Standard features include a Nappa leather interior, AMG Performance steering wheel in Nappa leather/DINAMICA microfiber and the additional transmission mode "RACE."
    Fully automatic: the weight-optimized fabric soft top
    Both Roadsters are quickly transformed from coupes to open-top sports cars. The fabric roof opens and closes in around eleven seconds, and can do this at speeds of up to 31 mph. The three soft top colors (black, red and beige) can be chosen to suit the eleven exterior and ten interior colors. The three-layered fabric soft top is supported by a lightweight magnesium/steel/aluminum structure which helps to keep the center of gravity low. Additional rollover protection is provided by an integrated aluminum cross-member with rollover bars.
    New output level: the handcrafted AMG 4.0L V8 biturbo engine
    With the AMG GT C Roadster, Mercedes-AMG is introducing a further output level of the handcrafted 4.0L V8 biturbo engine, thereby underlining the exclusive character of the new model. At 550 hp, the peak output is 47 hp above that of the AMG GT S and 27 hp below the Mercedes-AMG GT R. The maximum torque of 502 lb-ft is available from 1,900 to 5,750 rpm. A sprint from zero to 60 mph is achieved in 3.7 seconds, accelerating on to a top speed of 196 mph.
    The AMG GT Roadster has an output of 469 hp and 465 lb-ft of torque. This variant accelerates to 60 mph in 3.9 seconds and to a top speed of 188 mph.
    The eight-cylinder engine thrills with its immediate response, a linear, finely controllable power delivery and powerful acceleration in all rpm ranges. The handcrafted AMG 4.0L V8 biturbo engine comes with well-proven twin turbocharging, with the two turbochargers not located outside on the cylinder banks, but rather between them in the V of the cylinders. The advantages of the "hot inner V" configuration include a compact engine design, spontaneous response from the turbochargers and low exhaust emissions thanks to optimum air flow for the close-coupled catalytic converters.
    Also adapted: the dual-clutch transmission
    The developers have also adapted the seven-speed dual clutch transmission in a transaxle arrangement at the rear axle to the new power level of the Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster by modifying the hardware and software. The first gear of the AMG SPEEDSHIFT® DCT 7-speed sport transmission has a higher ratio, while seventh gear and the final drive have a lower ratio. This makes for even more agile acceleration and very fast responses to sudden accelerator movements.
    The driver is able to set the AMG GT Roadster to his/her individual requirements using the AMG DYNAMIC SELECT controller. The three transmission modes "C" (Comfort), "S" (Sport), "S+" (Sport Plus) and the individually programmable setup "I" (Individual) allow a broad range of driving experiences from comfortable to very sporty.
    The transmission mode "RACE" is additionally available for the Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster. This mode optimally adjusts the shift strategy of the dual clutch transmission to the needs of the racetrack – very fast shift speeds and highly emotional engine sound are included. By pressing the separate "M" button in the center console, the driver can activate the manual transmission mode.
    Pure sound: the AMG Performance Exhaust System
    The AMG GT C Roadster is equipped with the AMG Performance Exhaust System as standard to obtain an even more emotional sound experience. Two variably adjustable flaps modulate the exhaust note of the Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster authentically and directly. The flaps open and close depending on the selected AMG DRIVE SELECT mode, although they can also be controlled individually using a separate button in the AMG DRIVE UNIT. In the "Comfort" and "Sport" settings, the low-frequency sound typical of a V8 is designed for comfort. In "Sport+" and "RACE" modes the sound composition is far more emotional. The variable AMG Performance Exhaust System is also available as an option for the Mercedes-AMG GT Roadster.
    Also for the Roadster models: active air management system from the AMG GT R
    The two AMG Roadster variants have adopted a special technical highlight from the AMG GT R: the active air management system. Vertical louvers located in the lower area directly behind the front fascia can be opened and closed by an electric motor in around one second. This ensures that the cooling performance is according to need. Always achieving the optimum position requires highly intelligent and fast control.
    During normal driving with no increased cooling requirement, the louvers are closed to reduce aerodynamic drag and specifically conduct the air to the underbody. Only when certain components reach predefined temperatures and the air requirement is particularly high do the louvers open to allow the maximum cooling airflow to the heat exchangers.
    Highly expressive: athletic exterior design
    From the expressive AMG Panamericana grille to the long, muscular hood and the wide rear end, the two-seater guarantees a pure sports car experience even when stationary. The striking AMG Panamericana grille underlines the motor racing heritage: 15 chrome-plated, vertical bars echo the look of the current Mercedes-AMG GT3 customer sports racing car. The new front bumper emphasizes the car's width and gives it an athletic appearance on the road. Large outer air inlets ensure the supply of cooling air to the engine and the pronounced shoulder line is suggestive of a tensed muscle, enhancing the impression of sheer power and athleticism in combination with the new 19-inch and 20-inch AMG light-alloy wheels in a 5-twin-spoke design.
    Muscular with an emphasis on width: the rear end
    The rear end also features numerous, conspicuous innovations. The new aluminum fenders of the AMG GT C Roadster widen the open-top two-seater by 2.25-inches compared to the AMG GT Roadster, making it the same width as the AMG GT R. Compared to the AMG GT Roadster the muscular form also creates space for larger wheels and a wider track. Both measures make for traction while allowing higher cornering speeds. The likewise wider contours at the AMG GT C Roadster's rear bumper improve airflow at the rear with large outer air vents. Both Roadster variants feature a rear spoiler integrated into the trunk lid which can be electrically extended and retracted at defined speeds, depending on the selected transmission mode.
    Greater rigidity and low weight: Intelligent material mix
    Mercedes-AMG also uses an intelligent material mix for the body structure of the AMG GT and GT C Roadster. Various aluminum alloys are used for the chassis and body and magnesium is used for the front deck. This extremely light element at the front reduces the inertia ahead of the front axle, thus improving agility.
    The already rigid bodyshell structure has been specifically reinforced further to take account of the car's design as a roadster: side skirts with greater wall thicknesses and more chambers make the structure more rigid. The dashboard support is braced against the windscreen surround by additional struts and a strut tower brace between the soft top and the tank reinforces the rear axle. A cross-member behind the seats supports the fixed roll-over protection system.
    The trunk lid is particularly light, thanks to an innovative composite material. The load-bearing structure is of SMC (Sheet Molding Compound) with carbon fiber. These high-tech plastics excel with their light weight, great strength and first-class surface condition. These innovative materials were developed by the Mercedes-Benz TEC factory in Sindelfingen and brought to production maturity together with the AMG specialists in Affalterbach. This material combination is used for the first time in the new AMG Roadsters.
    The AMG lightweight construction experts have also used a composite material for the wheel-catching struts. 50 percent lighter than the equivalent in steel, these composite components help to guide the front wheels onto the side members as part of the intended crash kinematics in an accident, and to hold them there.
    Derived from motorsport: the AMG Sport Suspension
    The AMG Sport Suspension likewise confirms the motor racing heritage of the new AMG Roadsters. Wishbones, steering knuckles and hub carriers on the front and rear axle are manufactured entirely out of forged aluminum to reduce the unsprung mass. The wheels are also guided by double wishbones. The resulting precision in camber and track allows high cornering speeds and gives the driver optimum, highly precise road feedback right up to the very high cornering limits.
    In the Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster, the sport suspension is combined with AMG RIDE CONTROL continuously variable, adaptive damping system. The system is electronically controlled and automatically adapts the damping on each wheel to the current handling situation, speed and road conditions.
    Even more agility: active rear axle steering from the AMG GT R
    As standard, the new Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster responds even more sensitively thanks to the active rear axle steering that had its debut in the Mercedes-AMG GT R. The system offers an ideal combination of agility and stability - handling characteristics that are normally in direct conflict.
    Up to a speed of 62 mph, the rear wheels are turned in the opposite direction to the front wheels, resulting in significantly higher agility and increased driving pleasure with less steering input. In day-to-day driving the driver also benefits from a reduced turning circle.
    Once the speed of the AMG GT C Roadster exceeds 62 mph, the system turns the rear wheels in the same direction as the front wheels, this noticeably improves handling stability. At the same time, the lateral force on the rear wheels builds up considerably faster when changing direction, which makes the response to steering inputs quicker. The driver also notices the high grip and stability of the Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster during rapid changes of direction, without the usual tendency for the rear to break out.
    On board as standard: the rear-axle locking differential
    As standard the AMG GT C Roadster is equipped with an electronically controlled locking differential at the rear axle (The Mercedes-AMG GT Roadster comes with a mechanical locking differential), which is integrated into the compact transmission housing. Its sensitive and rapid control elevates the physical handling limits to a new level. It not only further improves the grip of the driven wheels, but also increases cornering speeds at the limit.
    High quality and exclusivity: the interior
    The interior design echoes the design lines of the exterior. The dashboard places an extreme emphasis on width, creating an impression of a powerful wing. High beltlines, concave door panels, dynamically rising center console and low seat position perfectly integrate the driver into the cockpit. The new, light-colored interior in Macchiato Beige Exclusive Nappa leather is available for the first time, lending the open-top sports car even more individuality and exclusivity.
    More lateral support and comfort: AMG Performance seats
    The optionally available AMG Performance seats provide even more lateral support with more heavily contoured backrest and seat cushion side bolsters. For the first time the AMG performance seat is also optionally available with the AIRSCARF® neck-level heating system, which makes open-air driving enjoyable even when the outside temperature is low. The air vent is seamlessly integrated into the seat's head restraint area. To meet the individual preferences of customers, the temperature of the warm airflow can be set in three stages.
    Customers wishing to enjoy comfortable temperatures even on very hot summer days will also opt for seat climate control, which is also available exclusively for the AMG Performance seat for the first time. The intensity of the cooling can also be set in three stages.
    Impressive sound in the interior: Externed Coupled Subwoofer
    The Burmester® Sound System and Burmester® High-End Sound System ensure a very special musical experience in the AMG GT Roadster. Both systems benefit from an innovation developed jointly by AMG and Burmester®: the Externed Coupled Subwoofer (ECS). This new bass sound reproduction system with an extremely low bass range turns the open two-seater into a mobile concert stage.
    Instead of a subwoofer box of limited dimensions, ECS uses the entire interior as a bass box. This is made possible by a special aperture in the right rear wheel arch. The subwoofer is connected to the bodyshell via this aperture, transmitting the impressive sound.
    The Mercedes-AMG GT Roadster and Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster will arrive in US dealers by fall of 2017.
    Previous Page Next Page

    William Maley

    Could This Concept Be A Future Member Of the Audi TT Family?

    Every few years, Audi shows off a TT concept that leads to the speculation of a TT family. Such examples include a shooting brake or a crossover. Now it happens to be a sedan.
    The Audi TT Sportback Concept doesn't have all of the usual Audi concept trademarks such as large wheels, miniscule mirrors, and odd interior treatments. The outside looks like the new TT coupe with slim headlight and distinctive roofline. The back end reminds us the quattro concept, especially the trunk lid. Compared to the TT Coupe, the Sportback is 11 inches longer, 2.4 inches wider and rides on a wheelbase that is 4.7 inches longer.
    Under the hood lies a turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder producing 400 horsepower and 332 pound-feet of torque. This is paired with a seven-speed S-tronic dual-clutch transmission and quattro all-wheel drive system.
    "With the TT, Audi created one of the automotive design icons of the last 20 years," says Prof. Dr. Ulrich Hackenberg, Audi Board Member for Technical Development. "In the years since, we have designed our sporty and elegant five‑door Audi A5 Sportback* and Audi A7 Sportback*. In our Audi TT Sportback concept show car, we are now fusing both concepts to form a new member of a potential TT family."
    Source: Audi
    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
    Ingolstadt/Paris, 2014-10-01
    The sportiness of the Audi TT redesigned: The Audi TT Sportback concept show car
    Sporty elongated sculpture: Concept study reinterprets Audi TT*
    Board Member for Development Prof. Dr. Hackenberg: “TT Sportback concept unites two concepts to form a new member of a potential TT family”
    Four-cylinder TFSI provides 400 hp, maximum torque 450 Nm (331.9 lb-ft)

    A speedy sports car with four seats and five doors – Audi is presenting the TT Sportback concept at the Paris Motor Show. The exterior of the show car invokes the design idiom of the classic TT*, developing it into a new, elongated sculpture. It is driven by a high-powered 2.0 TFSI engine that delivers 294 kW (400 hp).
    “With the TT, Audi created one of the automotive design icons of the last 20 years,” says Prof. Dr. Ulrich Hackenberg, Audi Board Member for Technical Development. “In the years since, we have designed our sporty and elegant five‑door Audi A5 Sportback* and Audi A7 Sportback*. In our Audi TT Sportback concept show car, we are now fusing both concepts to form a new member of a potential TT family.”
    The Audi TT Sportback concept captivates with the power of 294 kW (400 hp) that flows through a seven-speed S tronic to the quattro permanent all‑wheel drive. The sprint from 0 to 100 km/h (62.1 mph) takes just 3.9 seconds. The sophisticated suspension and the low center of gravity ensure dynamic handling, and the body integrates a number of lightweight aluminum components. A laser spot that complements the LED high beam is featured in each of the headlights – this innovation from Audi significantly boosts safety when driving in the dark.
    The Audi virtual cockpit dominates the elegantly designed interior of the show car, with the 12.3‑inch screen replacing the conventional instruments and the MMI monitor. The screen provides top-quality graphics and enables the driver to choose between multiple display levels. In the MMI terminal, the rotary push-button features a touchpad that is used to enter characters and gestures as with a smartphone. The operation of the climate control has been relocated to the air vents.
    Exterior design
    The five-door Audi TT Sportback concept is 4.47 meters (14.7 ft) long, 1.89 meters (6.2 ft) wide, and 1.38 meters (4.5 ft) high, featuring a wheelbase of 2.63 meters (8.6 ft). Compared with the new production TT, it is 29 centimeters (11.4 in) longer, 6 centimeters (2.4 in) wider and has a 12 centimeter (4.7 in) larger wheelbase; its height is 3 centimeters (1.2 in) less than that of the new TT.
    Featuring Mars red paintwork, the body is a statement of powerful elegance: High-precision lines border athletically domed surfaces, and a flat greenhouse is positioned on a powerful body. The design makes use of the Audi TT’s formal idiom to develop a new sporty and elongated sculpture that is highly taut.
    The distinctive horizontal lines at the front end of the new Audi TT Sportback concept reinforce the broad and sporty look. Bearing the quattro badge on its lower edge, the Singleframe grille is flatter and wider than on the two‑door coupe and features a honeycomb grille insert with a resplendent dark aluminum look.
    The lateral borders of the Singleframe are continued across the hood as swage lines, giving it a sporty contour. Typically for Audi, the design forms a coherent whole, with all the lines and surfaces of the show car being linked to one another in a logical manner.
    The front of the Audi TT Sportback concept has another characteristic feature in the form of the large, striking air inlets. Framed by pronounced edges, the air inlets have the look of individual structures and feature honeycomb inserts that fill their interior. A third, flat inlet underneath the Singleframe connects them to each other. The blade that gives the Singleframe structure sharpens the look of the show car whilst boosting the aerodynamics.
    Another typical TT design feature are the newly designed headlights with separators that demonstrate a unique daytime running light signature. On the Audi TT Sportback concept, the high-beam spot is provided by laser technology – in each headlight, a module comprising four powerful diodes generates a beam of light that illuminates several hundred meters. The laser spot, which is activated at 60 km/h ( 37.3 mph) and above, supplements the LED high beam. For the driver, this is a significant boost to visibility and safety; a camera is used to detect and blank out other road users.
    The lighting concept is rounded out by the indicator with a dynamized display that is also used in the LED rear lights. It comprises a series of individual diodes that light up one after the other from the inside to the outside, indicating the direction selected by the driver.
    The side view of the four-seater show car is a particularly striking indication of the close relationship between it and the production TT. The Audi TT Sportback concept sits powerfully on the road and features short overhangs. The wide semicircles of the wheel arches, each of which protrudes by 3 centimeters (1.2 in), have a superimposed look. The front semicircle defines the edge of the hood, which runs as a sharp tornado line across the doors and to the rear end.
    The trim of the side sill, which connects the wheel arches to one another, also has a broad and sporty appearance. In classic sports car style, the exterior mirrors and their angular housings are positioned on the door top shoulders. The right side part houses the circular filler cap, another classic TT icon.
    The strong shoulders of the powerful vehicle body support a low greenhouse that is elongated towards the rear. This is in keeping with the Sportback line as implemented by Audi in its A5 and A7 model series. The flat C‑pillar flows elegantly into the shoulder, and the rear has a compact and sleek look. The highly rounded corners of the rear window are a homage to the original TT.
    The rear of the Audi TT Sportback concept is also focused and sculptural, with five horizontal lines emphasizing its width. The one-piece rear lights – which also include vertical separators inspired by the R18 – form independent structures. These are linked to one another by the handle edge of the luggage compartment, which constitutes a powerfully contoured continuous trim. The surface that bears the number plate is located in the shadow of the spoiler lip. The two large elliptical tailpipes of the exhaust system are embedded in the diffuser and linked by a trim.
    Interior
    The driver and the passengers enter the Audi TT Sportback concept through doors with frameless window panes. The interior fits around them with the precision of a sporty suit. In the interior, the uncompromising sportiness of the Audi TT meets the functionality of a five‑door sedan. This is underlined by slimline applications on the dashboard and doors, as well as a long center console which continues through the entire interior. Handworked seams run along the center console and top shoulder from the front through to the luggage compartment, lending a sporty elegance to the interior. The headlining also features an elegant contour that accentuates the length of the interior. The super sport seats with the integrated head restraints are sharply contoured and highly adjustable.
    There is space for two people in the rear, likewise on individual seats with integrated head restraints. They are separated by functional storage compartments and a comfortable armrest. The backrests can be folded down so that large objects can also be stowed in the luggage compartment beneath the tailgate.
    The sinewy, taut lines created by the Audi designers in the interior of the show car are closely oriented to those of the production TT. When viewed from the top, the instrument panel resembles the wing of an airplane and the five round air vents are reminiscent of jet engines. The controls for the seat heating, air recirculation, temperature, distribution and strength of the air flow are located on their axes. The omission of the classic air conditioning control panel and the MMI monitor has made it possible to design the instrument panel within a sleek and light architecture that is fully focused on the driver.
    The Audi virtual cockpit, the digital instrument cluster, replaces the conventional physical displays and the central MMI monitor. The driver can switch to the 12.3‑inch display at multiple levels in order to view top quality graphics. The system is operated via the multifunction steering wheel or the MMI terminal. The touchpad located on the round rotary push-button is used to enter characters and also processes multiple finger gestures – the driver can zoom in on the map as they would on a smartphone.
    In keeping with the character of sporty elegance, the interior of the Audi TT Sportback concept is defined by the use of high-quality materials. The instrument panel and the upper area of the door trims are dark granite gray in color. The door armrests, the center console and the seats see the use of a new soft leather in parchment beige – this is processed for a particularly near-natural look and has a silky sheen. The door top shoulder is upholstered in Alcantara, parchment beige. The seat upholstery features a diamond pattern. The side bolsters of the seats are trimmed with special accent strips in dark gray leather that are fixed with red thread using a special stitching technique.
    The instrument panel and the door trims contain decorative surfaces with a dark aluminum look. Further accents in this look are provided by the clasps on the sides of the seats and the trim rings on the air vents. The color and material concept is rounded out by black floor mats made from the rubberized material that also covers the floor of the luggage compartment.
    Drivetrain
    The 2.0 TFSI engine in the Audi TT Sportback concept captivates with its performance characteristics: It generates 294 kW (400 hp) at 6,400 rpm, with a specific output of 147 kW (200 hp) per liter of displacement. The four‑cylinder engine puts 450 Nm (331.9 lb‑ft) of torque on the crankshaft between 2,400 and 6,000 rpm, with over 300 Nm (221.3 lb‑ft) already available at just 1,900 rpm. The high-performance engine limits fuel consumption to an average of 7.0 liters per 100 kilometers (33.6 US mpg). This equates to CO2 emissions of 162 grams per kilometer (260.7 g/mi).
    As a member of the Audi EA 888 engine family, there is a comprehensive package of high-end technology on board for the turbocharged direct-injection unit. The camshaft adjustment on the intake and exhaust sides and the Audi valvelift system, which varies the stroke of the exhaust valves in two stages, ensure good filling of the combustion chambers. At part load, indirect injection complements the FSI direct injection. The exhaust manifold embedded in the cylinder head is an important component of the thermal management. The flow of coolant is managed by a powerful rotary slide module.
    In order to generate the high power output, the 2.0 TFSI has undergone profound modifications, including special aluminum pistons with an integrated cooling channel and a crankshaft made from ultra-high-strength forged steel. The crankcase consists of a new, high-strength casting alloy and the cylinder head has been designed for the increased gas flow rate. The turbocharger has also been redeveloped and builds up a maximum relative boost pressure of 1.8 bar. It contains a mixed flow turbine wheel that is noted for its particularly fast start-up performance.
    When driving, the four-cylinder unit’s extreme dynamics are breathtaking. The turbocharged direct-injection engine accelerates the Audi TT Sportback concept from 0 to 100 km/h (62.1 mph) in 3.9 seconds, demonstrating excellent response characteristics and running at 7,200 rpm up to the maximum rated speed. The sporty sound is made even more resonant as the load and engine speed increase.
    The force of the engine flows into a compact seven-speed S-tronic with a three-shaft layout that performs direct gear changes in a few hundredths of a second. The driver can let the dual-clutch transmission operate in two automatic programs or take control using the paddles on the steering wheel.
    Power is delivered to the road via quattro permanent all‑wheel drive. For optimal weight distribution, the hydraulically actuated and electronically controlled multi-plate clutch is located on the rear axle. The quattro drive actively controls the distribution of torque between the axles in milliseconds, thus adding to the car’s dynamic handling.
    Chassis
    The suspension also reflects the technological expertise behind the Audi TT Sportback concept. The front suspension is based on a McPherson system; aluminum components reduce the weight of the unsprung chassis masses. The four-link rear suspension can process the longitudinal and transverse forces separately.
    The large wheels have a 21‑inch diameter and a tire format of 255/30. The four brake discs in 18‑inch format feature a weight-saving wave design.
    The Electronic Stabilization Control (ESC) adds the final touch to the handling. A sub-function of the ESC is enabled at the cornering threshold – through minimal application of the brakes at the wheels on the inside of the curve, which are reduced of load, the wheel-selective torque control diverts the drive torque to the wheels on the outside of the curve. For the driver, this means a further boost in terms of neutrality, stability and traction.
    Body
    The body plays a leading role in the lightweight construction concept of the Audi TT Sportback concept on the basis of the modular transverse matrix (MQB). The entire front section is made from steel. The passenger compartment floor comprises high-strength, hot-shaped steel components which, thanks to their outstanding strength properties, feature thin walls and are correspondingly light. The compartment’s structure, the outer skin, and the doors and lids are made of the classic Audi semi-finished aluminum products cast node, extruded profile and sheet metal.
    With its composite concept, the body represents the latest evolution of the Audi Space Frame (ASF). Its hybrid construction ensures that the show car has a low center of gravity – ideal for sporty driving.

    William Maley

    Ferrari Drops The Speciale's Top

    Ferrari's showing for the Paris Motor Show is the Ferrari 458 Speciale A. The 458 Speciale A (Aperta) is the convertible version of the 458 Speciale and features most of the the lightweight materials found on the coupe. The difference is the addition of a folding aluminum roof which can open or close in 14 seconds, and only adds about 110 pound to the weight of the Speciale A.
    Power comes from a 4.5L V8 engine which makes 605 horsepower and 397 pound-feet of torque. Ferrari says the 458 Speciale A can hit 60 MPH in about 3.0 seconds (about a tenth slower than the coupe). The Special A also features Ferrari's Side Slip angle Control (SSC) system which varies the torque distribution to improve handling.
    Ferrari says they will only build 499 458 Speciale A models. No word on when Ferrari will begin selling them.
    Source: Ferrari

    Press Release is on Page 2
    FERRARI 458 SPECIALE A: A NEW RECORD-BREAKING SPIDER
    25/09/14
    499 cars to celebrate our most successful, award-winning 8-cylinder model

    Maranello, 25th September 2014 – Ferrari is pleased to announce the Paris Motor Show world debut of the 458 Speciale A (A as in Aperta). The new limited edition special series is a celebration of the dazzling success of the various versions of the 458, a model that has collected an array of international motoring media awards and track victories, not least a double WEC title and category wins in classic endurance races, such as the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the 24 Hours of Daytona and the 12 Hours of Sebring.
    Dedicated to just 499 Ferrari collectors, the 458 Speciale A is the most powerful spider in Prancing Horse history, effortlessly marrying extreme performance with the sublime pleasure of drop-top driving. Its aluminium retractable hard top, which takes a mere 14 seconds to deploy or retract, helps reduce the weight difference with the Speciale coupé to just 50 kg.
    The 458 Speciale A sports the most powerful naturally-aspirated road-going V8 engine ever built by Ferrari. It punches out a massive 605 cv (135 cv/l specific power output) and 540 Nm of torque at 6000 rpm yet only generates 275 g/km of CO2 emissions. The three international Best Performance Engine awards the V8 has won are acknowledged on a special plaque in the cockpit.
    The new car sprints from 0-100 km/h in just 3.0 seconds and has a Fiorano lap time of 1'23"5. These superb results are thanks in great part to its front and rear active aerodynamics, the rigidity of a chassis that incorporates 10 aluminium alloys, and Side Slip Angle Control (SSC) which guarantees unparalleled sporty driving in all conditions, underscored by the seductively exhilarating signature Ferrari soundtrack.
    As is the case with all Prancing Horse cars, the 458 Speciale A's sculpted forms are absolutely performance-oriented. In fact, a series of innovative and original bodywork solutions has made the 458 Speciale A the most aerodynamically efficient Ferrari spider ever.
    The 458 Speciale A is being premiered in a unique triple-layer yellow livery with a Blu Nart and Bianco Avus central stripe as well as five-spoke forged wheels in Grigio Corsa. The cockpit has a distinctive racing-inspired look: lightweight yet exclusive materials have been adopted throughout and, of course, crafted with Ferrari's signature artisanal sophistication. This is particularly true of the finish of the dash, the moulded door panels and central tunnel in an exclusive blue carbon-fibre (also used for the treadplates) as well as the newly-designed seats in Alcantara© with contrasting stitching and 3D technical fabric.
    TECHNICAL SPECIFICATION SUMMARY
    EngineType V8 – 90°
    Total displacement 4497 ccMax. power output 605 cv at 9000 rpm
    Maximum torque 540 Nm at 6000 rpm
    WeightDry weight 1340 kg
    Weight-power ratio 2.21 kg/cv
    Performance0 - 100 km/h 3.0"
    0 - 200 km/h 9.5"Fiorano lap time 1'23"5
    Emissions (ECE + EUDC combined cycle)
    CO2 emissions** 275 gr/km
    **with HELE system

    William Maley

    Mercedes' Reveals Its M3/M4 Competitor

    Whenever a new BMW M3 (and M4) appears, you can expect other automakers to introduce their competitors to give the roundel a run for its money. Mercedes-Benz is the first automaker to launch its competitor to the M3/M4 and the name is the Mercedes-AMG C63.
    Mercedes-AMG? Are you sure you didn't mistype that? No. From now on, AMG vehicles will wear the Mercedes-AMG nameplate. This was introduced on the upcoming Mercedes-AMG GT coupe that will do battle with the Porsche 911.
    Like the E63, the new C63 will be offered in two states of tune. The standard C63 features a twin-turbocharged 4.0L V8 producing 469 horsepower and 479 pound-feet of torque. The C63 S increases the output to 503 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque. Both models use a seven-speed AMG Speedshift dual-clutch transmission which routes power to the rear wheels only. 0-60 is done in 4 seconds in the C63, while the S does it in 3.9 seconds.
    The C63 features dynamic engine mounts which can vary how much stiffness the chassis has. There's also a three-stage adjustable damping system and four different driving modes (Controlled Efficiency, Sport, Sport+, and Race).
    Styling-wise, the C63 features a new front bumper with larger intakes and splitter; either 18-inch (C63) or 19-inch (C63 S) wheels; wider front fenders, and a new rear bumper with a diffuser.
    The C63 and C63 S arrive at dealers in March, with a special Edition 1 model as well that features unique exterior and interior appointments.
    Source: Mercedes-Benz

    William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached atwilliam.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
    Press Release is on Page 2
    The New Mercedes-AMG C63
    Powerful High-Performance Athlete

    September 24, 2014
    Affalterbach. Pure fascination and breathtaking dynamics – the new Mercedes-AMG C63 sets benchmarks. The high-tech drivetrain, the signature AMG handling and the high level of individuality in optional equipment guarantee an utterly unique driving experience. The pinnacle of the C-Class line-up is driven by an all new 4.0-liter V8 biturbo engine closely related to the power unit that provides breathtaking propulsion in the new Mercedes-AMG GT. The power spectrum ranges from 469 hp in the C63 to 503 hp in the C63 S. With an unrivalled fuel fuel economy, the C63 is the most fuel-efficient eight-cylinder car in the high-performance segment. The extensive range of standard equipment includes the AMG Adaptive sports suspension with electronically controlled shock absorbers, the mechanical rear locking differential and the AMG DYNAMIC SELECT with its multiple drive programs. Additionally, there will be a highly exclusive "Edition 1" model available from market launch.
    Dynamics plus long-distance comfort –the new Mercedes-AMG C63 offers impressive engine output with exceptionally low fuel consumption figures, outstanding longitudinal and lateral dynamics and yet delivers a high level of everyday usability. As form is just as important as function, the interior and exterior design is more distinctive than ever before.
    The V8 pinnacle in the C-Class portfoilio is available in a choice of two models –the Mercedes-AMG C63 S and C63, with the C63 S set up for even more dynamic handling and performance. The Mercedes-AMG C63 celebrates its world premiere on October 2, 2014 together with the show premiere of the Mercedes-AMG GT at the Salon de l’Automobile in Paris. Market introduction in the USA begins in March 2015 with both the C63 and C63 S launching at the same time.
    "We are also marking the beginning of a new era with the new nomenclature. The successor to the Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG, which has been incredibly successful worldwide, will now be called the Mercedes-AMG C63," says Tobias Moers, CEO of Mercedes-AMG GmbH. "At 40,000 units, the 204 C63 AMG was the bestselling AMG model. We will now add to this success with the new Mercedes-AMG C63. Be it in drive, handling or equipment, the Mercedes-AMG C63 sets new benchmarks and will further strengthen our brand promise ‘Driving Performance’. AMG customers can look forward to an exceptionally dynamic driving experience."
    Best in fuel consumption, best in performance
    The C63 is at the forefront of the competitive field. The new high-performance vehicles from Affalterbach are the only ones in the segment to be equipped with an eight-cylinder biturbo engine. The result is impressive power delivery and a highly emotional engine sound – a signature of the AMG brand. Drivers benefit from unrivalled performance delivered by a supreme level of power and torque. The C63 S accelerates from zero to 60mph in 3.9 seconds and the C63 in 4.0. The top speed is 155mph (electronically limited).
    "Naturally, the new Mercedes-AMG C63 is once again powered by an eightcylinder engine. The passionate power delivery and highly emotional sound of our 4.0-liter V8 biturbo are truly compelling. At the same time, we are maintaining our leading role in the core issue of efficiency. No other highperformance V8 automobile is more fuel efficient than the new C63," says Christian Enderle, Head of Development Engine and Drivetrain at Mercedes-AMG GmbH.
    The C63 not only holds the top position in terms of engine data and performance, it also sets new benchmarks in fuel consumption. The high-performance car from Affalterbach demonstrates exceptional efficiency that puts it at the top of the segment. And it does not stop there – the C63 is the most fuel-efficient eightcylinder, high-performance vehicle in the world. It achieves a remarkable decrease in fuel consumption compared with the preceding C63 AMG. The new Mercedes-AMG C63 consumes around 32 percent less fuel than its direct predecessor with the 6.3-liter V8 naturally aspirated engine – while delivering even more performance and the emotional sound that is a signature of the AMG V8.
    New V8 biturbo closely related to the engine in the Mercedes-AMG GT
    This impressive efficiency improvement is rooted in the new drive package. The M177 4.0-liter V8 biturbo engine is a close relative of the M178, which is the sports-car heart of the new Mercedes-AMG GT. The innovative eightcylinder is notable for its outstanding power delivery, targeted lightweight design, high efficiency and environmental compatibility. It also fulfills the highest standards in terms of noise and vibration comfort.
    The newly developed eight-cylinder features biturbocharging, whereby the two chargers are not located on the outside of the cylinder banks, but instead, within the cylinder V – specialists refer to this as the "hot inside V". The resulting benefits are a compact engine design, optimum responsiveness and low exhaust emissions.
    Petrol piezo direct injection with spray-guided combustion
    Mixture preparation is handled by the petrol piezo direct injection system used exclusively by Mercedes. The third generation of the spray-guided combustion process has been developed to meet all future legislative requirements. A sophisticated engine cooling system ensures high performance even at ambitious race-track speeds.
    Performance exhaust system available as an option
    Fascination, emotionality and immediate recognition – engine sound is an important development objective. The C63 and C63 S feature a sports exhaust system with a dynamic electronically controlled exhaust flap. Depending on the AMG DYNAMIC SELECT drive program, the engine sound varies between low-key for long-distance travel and raw emotionality. The exhaust flap is located in the front third, at the interface between the two pipes. Its infinitely variable actuation is controlled on the basis of the drive program, the performance wishes of the driver and the engine speed.
    A Performance exhaust system with three electronically controlled exhaust flaps is available as an option for both engine variants. It provides the driver with an even greater level of control of the exhaust note via a button on the center console. In the "Comfort" drive program, the engine is quieter and more comfortable, while, in "Sport +" and "Race", the V8 sound is even more dominant and evocative of a race touring car – complete with acoustic up-shift and distinctive double de-clutching feedback. In addition to setting it via the drive programme, the engine sound can also be set individually at any time at the push of a button.
    C63 S comes as standard with dynamic engine mounts
    A further new feature of the C63 S that is unique in the competitive field is the dynamic engine mounts – as used on the Mercedes-AMG GT. They address the conflict of interest between comfort and handling by reducing vibration from the engine/transmission unit. The dynamic mounts can adapt their stiffness smoothly and in fractions of a second to the prevailing driving conditions and style. Soft engine mounts improve comfort by better reducing noise and vibration. Handling and agility, on the other hand, benefit from slightly stiffer mounts. When driving dynamically, the driver feels more closely connected to the vehicle as a result of increased feedback, while steering response is more direct. The driver benefits overall from a more precise driving feel. Minimized movement of the drivetrain mass calls for less correction on turn-in.
    Engine production by hand – "one man, one engine"
    Powerful V8 engines have always been one of the competencies of AMG, the Mercedes-Benz performance brand. Mercedes-AMG GmbH is fully responsible for development and production. The 4.0-liter V8 biturbo engine is manufactured in the Affalterbach engine shop in accordance with the "one man, one engine" principle.
    Variable dynamics – the AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sport transmission
    A large part of the direct and sporty character of the new Mercedes-AMG C63 is attributable to the transmission. The AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sport transmission offers a compelling mix of tailor-made dynamics and exceptional variability. The MCT transmission was extensively redeveloped for application in the C63 and is now even faster in its reaction times.
    Be it automatic or triggered at the steering wheel paddle by the driver, a manual up or down-shift is now noticeably faster than in the last model. The transmission is now significantly more spontaneous in the "Sport +" and manual modes in particular. This increase in responsiveness was enabled by optimization of the transmission’s hardware and software. Also, the aluminium shift paddles on the Performance steering wheel are now able to transmit the driver’s shift inputs even faster than before, thus further increasing the dynamic feel.
    One look at the drive programmes shows the high variability of the AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 7-speed sport transmission. The available choices are "Controlled Efficiency", "Sport" and "Sport +" – as well as "Race", which is exclusive to the C63 S. The driver chooses from the various drive programmes with the aid of the AMG DYNAMIC SELECT switch. The "temporary M" function, activated by using the paddles, delivers a further increase in dynamics in any mode.
    AMG Adaptive sport suspension with 3-stage adjustable damping
    Fascinating agility, high cornering speeds and optimum neutrality – the C63 is equipped with independent suspension featuring a high proportion of aluminium, dynamic-oriented kinematics, electronically controlled shock absorbers and AMG-specific elastokinematics. With the AMG Dynamic sport suspension, the customer can vary characteristics in three stages between maximum sporting performance and good long-distance comfort. At the front of the C63 is a four-link front suspension with motorsport-based radially mounted brakes. Independent steering knuckles and a wider track permit higher lateral acceleration. The multilink rear suspension with independent wheel mounts likewise has a higher negative camber. To improve traction and dynamics, the C63 has a mechanical locking differential at the rear, while the C63 S is equipped with an electronic rear locking differential.
    Both locking differentials reduce slip at the inside wheel without braking input. As a result, the driver can accelerate sooner out of corners and the car maintains its stability when braking at high speed. The locking differential also improves traction when accelerating from a standstill. Compared with the mechanical solution, the benefits of the electronic locking rear differential, which is standard equipment on the C63 S, are its faster and more finely tuned control, thus pushing the physical limits of the driving envelope even higher. The standard 3-stage ESP® with the functions "ESP ON", "SPORT Handling Mode" and "ESP OFF" is perfectly networked with the locking rear differential and expertly tuned to the high level of dynamics.
    The electromechanical speed-sensitive sport steering ensures precise and agile handling, with the driver benefitting from a direct ratio and optimized response characteristics. It also has variable power assistance, whereby the steering force is adapted relative to the current vehicle speed. The power assistance reacts not only in accordance with vehicle speed, but also in line with current lateral acceleration and the drive programme chosen via AMG DYNAMIC SELECT.
    The C63 runs as standard on titanium grey painted and polished alloy wheels measuring 8.5 x 18 (front) and 9.5 x 18 (rear) in 10-spoke design and clad in 245/40 R 18 tires (front) and 265/40 R 18 (rear). The tire dimensions on the C63 S are 245/35 R 19 (front) and 265/35 R 19 (rear) running on alloy wheels measuring 8.5 x 19 (front) and 9.5 x 19 (rear) in 5-twin-spoke design, painted in titanium grey and polished.
    A high-performance, ceramic-composite brake system is available for the first time as optional equipment for the C63 S. Optional sport cup tires ensure a noticeable and measurable increase in grip.
    AMG DYNAMIC SELECT drive programmes
    The driver can use four different AMG DYNAMIC SELECT drive programmes to influence the characteristics of the C63. The C63 S has the additional "Race" programme, which enables a maximum level of individualisation. The driver defines the driving experience using a switch to the left of the touchpad. There is a choice of several different pre-configured driving programmes and an "Individual" drive programme, which allows extensive self-configuration.
    "Controlled Efficiency" is the balanced drive programme with a comfortable Page 7 suspension and steering set-up as well as fuel-optimized drivetrain settings – including soft gearshifts and a more restrained engine sound. The "Gliding Function" is completely new and delivers a further reduction in fuel consumption. If the driver lifts off the accelerator between37 and 99 mph - , the clutch of the MCT transmission opens and the engine is decoupled from the drivetrain. The electronics system reduces the engine revs to idle, and the resistance generated by the compression and frictional forces produced under trailing throttle are reduced.
    The "Sport" and "Sport +" drive programmes increase sporting intensity. "Race" is reserved exclusively for the C63 S and is the optimum setting for ambitious laps on a closed race track.
    Form follows performance – the design reflects the technology
    Form follows performance – the design of the powerful V8 top model is influenced by motorsport and reflects its fascinating technology. Sensual clarity combines with stylish sporting character – the Mercedes C63 inspires fascination from the very first glance. From a visual standpoint, the new model is clearly a member of the Mercedes-AMG family. The exteriors of the C63 and C63 S are differentiated by specific design elements.
    The emotional, sensual surface design of the new C-Class, with its reduced, minimalist forms, now has an added, positive tension that gives it a truly dynamic character. The wider track and powerful eight-cylinder call for a completely standalone front end. The Mercedes-AMG C63 has aluminium front fenders, widened on each side by 0.55" and bearing "V8 BITURBO" lettering. The entire front end has also been lengthened by 2.12". In addition, the structure of the body-in-white has been reinforced in specific areas in order to compensate for the extreme longitudinal and transverse forces generated and transmitted by the drivetrain and running gear.
    Mercedes-AMG sets clear accents in sporting character, expressed succinctly at the front end – gracing the long aluminium bonnet are two distinctive power domes. Together with the wider front fenders, they guarantee a particularly muscular look. Positioned low down and with a characteristic arrow form, the "twin blade" radiator grille with AMG lettering lowers the vehicle’s visual center of gravity.
    The "A-wing" takes a three-dimensional form and also serves as an airflow guide for the three cooling air intakes. Flics ensure optimum airflow to the cooling module. Along the lower edge of the front skirt, a front splitter helps to increase downforce.
    At the rear end, the diffuser insert with three fins is a feature carried over from motorsport, as are the visual air outlets positioned on either side. They generate defined air separation edges and improve the cd figure. The two chrome-plated twin end pipes of the AMG sport exhaust system are perfectly integrated into the diffuser. The C63 Sedan has a separation edge on the rear deck lid,–which ensures even better grip at the rear axle.
    Stunning interior design
    Every detail in the interior of the C63 contributes to a stunning overall effect. The careful choice of select, first-class materials, their sumptuous tactile qualities and their precision craftsmanship deliver a sense of quality that is seldom seen even in higher vehicle classes. Like the exterior, the more powerful C63 S is distinguished from the C63 on the inside by a number of design details.
    The dashboard is finished in black ARTICO man-made leather, with the premium look-and-feel further enhanced by stitching in crystal grey, the winglike trim element in aluminium and the AMG-exclusive, IWC-design analogue clock (depending on equipment choice). Next to the touchpad is the AMG DYNAMIC SELECT switch as well as a number of AMG-specific controls, such as the button for the 3-stage AMG Dynamic sport suspension, the 3-stage ESP® and the optional button for the Performance exhaust system with variable exhaust flap control.
    The instrument cluster and the 3-spoke Performance steering wheel with 12-o’clock mark deliver a dynamically sporty ambience. Equipped with dedicated carbon weave-pattern dials and signature AMG numerals. Performance seats are also available as an alternative to the standard sports seats in MB-Tex / DINAMICA microfibre. They give occupants a lower seating position and ensure increased lateral grip due to their more powerfully contoured form.
    A range of further optional equipment means the Mercedes-AMG C63 can be extensively tailored to individual preferences.
    Exclusive and irresistible – the C63 "Edition 1"
    The Mercedes-AMG C63 S is also available from market launch as an "Edition 1" – with a stunning and irresistible combination of exclusive design and equipment features.. The "Edition 1" can be identified from the outside by a number of design highlights:
    Forged wheels in 8.5 x 19 and 9.5 x 19 cross-spoke design, painted matte black with the rim painted in red; tires are 245/35 R 19 (front) and 265/35 R 19 (rear)
    Night package (A-wing and trim in high-gloss black, wing mirror housings in high-gloss black, sill cladding inlays in high-gloss black, waistline trim and window frames in high-gloss black, radiator grille with double fin in silver chrome, Black-chromed twin end pipe fairings
    Red accentson radiator grille and wing mirrors
    Sport stripes in matte graphite grey above sill cladding

    The distinctive color combination carries into the interior:
    Performance seats, door center panels and armrest in black nappa leather with diamond pattern and red contrasting stitching
    designo seatbelts in red
    Performance steering wheel in DINAMICA microfibre, flattened bottom, with red 12-o’clock marking, red contrasting stitching, steering wheel fairing in silver chrome with "Edition 1" lettering and silvercolored aluminium shift paddles
    Trim element in carbon red pepper / light aluminium with longitudinal grain and red filaments
    Floor mats in black with "AMG" lettering and piping in red

    Highest safety levels
    The stated aim of Mercedes-Benz is to make the highest level of safety available to all. For this reason, the C-Class features many of the new and extensively enhanced assistance systems that celebrated their world premieres just a few months ago in the S and E-Class. Standard equipment on-board the C63 includes enhanced drowsiness warning system ATTENTION ASSIST and COLLISION PREVENTION ASSIST PLUS, which helps to avoid rear-end collisions. The assistance systems increase both comfort and safety. Mercedes-Benz calls this "Intelligent Drive". The predecessor to the new C-Class already demonstrated impressive results in terms of passive safety. The new model exceeds these and sets new benchmarks.

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