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William Maley

Mercedez Benz News Mercedes-Benz X-Class Fancies Up the Truck Class

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Mercedes-Benz shocked everyone last fall with the announcement of the X-Class concepts and saying that a production version would be debuting sometime in 2017. That day was today as Mercedes unveiled the 2018 X-Class in Cape Town, South Africa.

The production version doesn't stray too far from the concept with the trademark grille that is prominent on Mercedes' SUVs, large headlights, and wheels ranging in size from 17 to 19-inches. We should note that the X-Class is basically a Nissan Navara wearing a Mercedes-Benz dress. You can some of the Navara's design is present such as the design of the cab. Certain trims appear to get roof rails and a tonneau cover.

The interior looks to be very Mercedes-esq as many parts such as the knobs, switches, instrument cluster, and infotainment system all come the German automaker's parts bin. A 5.4-inch infotainment system comes standard, while an 8.4-inch system is available as an option.

Mercedes-Benz will be offering a variety of powertrain options including four engines, two transmissions, and three types of drive systems. The engine lineup is comprised of,

  • X200: 165 horsepower four-cylinder gas engine
  • X220d: 163 horsepower 2.3L turbodiesel four
  • X250d: 190 horsepower 2.3L biturbo diesel-four
  • X350d: 258 horsepower V6 diesel

A six-speed manual or seven-speed automatic transmission routes power to either the rear wheels or all four wheels via an engageable all-wheel drive system or permanent 4Matic all-wheel drive. 

Under the skin lies the frame from the Nissan Navara. Mercedes has made some tweaks to the suspension with coil springs for the front and rear to improve ride quality. The front uses double wishbones, while the rear features a multi-link solid axle.  This will help when the X-Class is either hauling something in the bed or towing. Mercedes says the truck can haul up to 2,500 pounds and tow more than 7,000 pounds.

Like other Mercedes models, the X-Class will come with a number of active safety features such as active lane control, automatic emergency braking, traffic sign recognition, and a 360-degree camera.

The X-Class will launch in Europe towards the end of the year, while other markets such as Australia and Argentina will follow. For the time being, Mercedes has no plans to bring the X-Class to the U.S. 

Source: Mercedes-Benz
Press Release is on Page 2


Pickup meets lifestyle – the Mercedes-Benz X-Class

Mercedes-Benz X-Class at a glance

  • The Mercedes among pickups: The Mercedes-Benz X-Class unites the typical traits of a pickup - robustness, functionality, strength and off-road capabilities - with the classical characteristics of a real Mercedes - design, comfort, driving dynamics and safety.
  • Brand characteristic SUV design: With the centrally positioned star, twin-louvre radiator grille, powerfully honed bonnet and headlamps extending far into the wings, the X-Class seamlessly fits into the Mercedes-Benz portfolio.
  • Premium effect on a new level: Three trim parts for the cockpit, six seat covers including two leather variants with contrasting topstitching, and two colours for the roof lining provide the widest choice of materials and colours in this vehicle segment.
  • A pickup to suit different lifestyles and work environments: The PURE basic variant for classic robust use, PROGRESSIVE for higher requirements in terms of quality feel and comfort, and POWER as the high-end variant for urban lifestyles.
  • Top-of-the-range engine in the segment: A top-of-the-range V6 diesel with 190 kW/258 hp will be released mid-2018 occupying a leading position in the mid-size pickup segment. The market launch will start with the diesel X 220 d (120 kW/163 hp) and X 250 d (140 kW/190 hp) as well as a petrol engine (122 kW/165 hp) in selected markets.
  • Individualisation on account of a diverse range of Mercedes-Benz accessories: As from its market launch, customers can add a styling bar, side bar, canopy, various covers as well as numerous cargo and off-road solutions – all developed and designed by Mercedes.
  • Driving enjoyment on a par with passenger cars: Thanks to the wide track, the spring and damping system tuned for the comfort typical of a Mercedes, and the coil springs as well as internally vented disc brakes on the front and rear, the X-Class is the first pickup that offers not just excellent off-road but also superb on-road performance.
  • All-wheel drive for any surface: The engageable 4MATIC all-wheel drive with low-range gearing and optional differential lock on the rear axle masters any terrain. From the middle of next year a permanent all-wheel drive will complement the portfolio. It will offer maximum performance and traction even while driving on-road with full speed.
  • Star safety: Like all Mercedes-Benz vehicles, the X-Class stands out for its exemplary passive and active safety equipment. This includes Active Brake Assist, Lane Keeping Assist and Traffic Sign Assist, among others.
  • The first intelligently connected pickup: Thanks to Mercedes me connect, X-Class customers are connected to their vehicle via smartphone at all times and can call up useful information such as the location of the vehicle or the fuel level, and navigate from door to door.
  • Attractively priced in the segment: The X-Class is available in Germany from 37,294 Euro (incl. 19 percent VAT). Market launch begins in November 2017 in Europe. South Africa and Australia will follow at the beginning of 2018, as well as Argentina and Brazil at the beginning of 2019.

The first pickup from a premium manufacturer

The Mercedes-Benz X-Class has been developed with the changing requirements of the international pickup markets in mind. The demand for mid-size pickups with typical passenger car characteristics and comfort features has been steadily on the rise for years. At the same time, the number of pickups for private use is increasing. They are no longer viewed purely as workhorses. As the first premium manufacturer, Mercedes-Benz is taking these changes into account – based on its comprehensive experience and competence in developing commercial and off-road vehicles, such as the Unimog and the G-Class for tough operation, vehicles which are equally suitable for work or leisure, such as the V-Class and Vito, and passenger cars that uniquely stand for modern luxury and driving pleasure around the world.

The X-Class is aimed at very different customer groups: land owners and farmers in Argentina, business owners and building contractors in Australia, families with an affinity for premium products in Brazil, trend-conscious individualists in South Africa and Great Britain as well as sporty adventurers in New Zealand and Germany.

The Mercedes-Benz pickup is attractively priced in the segment and is available in Germany from 37,294 Euro (incl. 19 percent VAT). Further market-specific prices will be made known successively.

Tough work, plenty of pleasure: the new X-Class

Like no other pickup, the new X-Class resolves apparent contradictions: modern design and uncompromising robustness, impressive off-road capability and a high level of driving dynamics, stylish comfort and great functionality. Making the X-Class the Mercedes among pickups. This tough performance pickup delivers a driveability and handling that matches many demands – both with regard to driving dynamics and ride comfort. This is attained thanks to a comfort suspension with the fine tuning expected of a Mercedes. It consists of a ladder-type frame, rear multi-link solid axle, front independent wheel suspension and coil springs on both axles. 

Built on this platform, the distinctive design of the X-Class is available in three model variants to suit different lifestyles and work environments:

  • The X-Class PURE basic variant is ideal for rugged, functional use. It fulfils all the demands placed on a workhorse. At the same time its comfort and design make it perfect for visiting customers or suppliers and for private activities.
  • The X-Class PROGRESSIVE is aimed at people seeking a rugged pickup with extra styling and comfort functions – as a calling card for their own business, while also being a comfortable yet prestigious vehicle for private use.
  • The X-Class POWER is the high-end design and equipment line. It is aimed at customers for whom styling, performance and comfort are paramount. The X-Class POWER is a lifestyle vehicle beyond the mainstream – suitable for urban environments as well as for sports and leisure activities off the beaten track. Through its design and high level of equipment it reflects an independent and individualistic lifestyle.

Robust character with dynamic charisma

With its progressive design, the Mercedes-Benz X-Class manages the fine balance between being both tough and stylish. The pickup embodies the enhanced Mercedes-Benz design philosophy of sensual purity. By emphasising the surfaces and featuring stripped-down, extremely precise elements, the purist design draws attention to the basic virtues of a pickup in an emotionally appealing way – combined with almost unlimited functionality. The X-Class can haul a payload of up to 1.1 tonnes. That is enough to transport 17 full 50-litre barrels of beer in the cargo area. Able to tow up to 3.5 tonnes, it can also pull a trailer containing three horses or an eight-metre yacht.

Thanks to its long 3150-millimetre wheelbase, the short and cladded front overhang, the backward shifted passenger compartment and the very long rear overhang, the X-Class has an elongated vehicle body which exudes pure dynamism. The design of the side windows with their dynamic kink along the beltline and taut lines contrasting with muscular, sculpted surfaces also allude to the longitudinal dynamics. Widely flared wheel arches, the commanding front and the purist design of the rear all accentuate the impression of width. Together they give the pickup a powerful on-road presence and make reference to the X-Class's excellent lateral dynamics.

Powerful and commanding front with three different characters

The front has the masterful looks of one of the brand's typical SUVs – with the centrally positioned star, twin-louvre radiator grille, high and powerfully honed bonnet and headlamps extending far into the wings. The front apron emphasises width and has its own distinct character depending on the chosen design and equipment line. On the PURE basic variant it is unpainted and with the PROGRESSIVE design and equipment line it is painted in the vehicle colour. The POWER high-end model variant likewise has a bumper painted in the vehicle colour and also comes with a chromed underbody panelling. There are nine attractive exterior colours and a variety of exclusive 17, 18 or 19-inch rims to choose from across the three design and equipment lines.

Purist design for the rear with bumper including step as standard

Like the front apron, the rear bumper also varies depending on the selected design and equipment line: it is painted black for the PURE line and in the vehicle colour for the PROGRESSIVE line. The POWER line has a chromed bumper for a particularly classy look. To conveniently access the cargo area for loading and unloading, the bumper has an integral step. If the standard 90-degree tailgate opening is not enough, as an option the X-Class can be ordered without the rear bumper. Then the tailgate opens to 180 degrees.

In terms of width, the load bed is designed in such a way that a Euro-pallet can be loaded straight between the wheel arches. The X-Class is the only mid-size pickup to be equipped with lighting in the cargo area as standard. The third brake light contains LED lights which illuminate the whole load bed. Operation is by a switch in the centre console. As soon as the ignition is switched on, those lights turn off automatically. A 12-volt socket to power additional equipment such as compressors, for example, is also part of the standard equipment in the load bed.

Dimensions of the X-Class

Vehicle length

5340 mm

Vehicle width

1920 mm

Vehicle height

1819 mm

Wheelbase

3150 mm

Load bed length

1587 mm

Load bed width

1560 mm

Load bed height

474 mm

Maximum payload capacity

1042 kg

Braked towing capacity (depending on engine and equipment)

1650–3500 kg

New benchmark in comfort and quality feel

In the interior, the X-Class elevates comfort and quality feel to a new level within the segment for mid-size pickups. The instrument panel has the concave trim element typical of a Mercedes. It stretches across the entire width of the instrument panel – a novel feature in this vehicle segment. It creates an open feel and purist modernity. There are three trim variants to choose from for the X-Class POWER: a pixelated look in matt black, an aluminium effect with longitudinal grain and a brown matt woodgrain effect. To complement the high-quality feel, the upper section of the cockpit is available with ARTICO man-made leather in either black or nut brown. The characteristic round ventilation outlets add a sporty touch. Depending on the design and equipment line, these come in either high-gloss black or silver shadow, creating a high-end cool touch effect. With the PROGRESSIVE and POWER design and equipment lines, the centre console is also prominently framed by a decorative trim in silver shadow. The large door handles are also finished in silver shadow. The cool touch effect is reinforced by the freestanding central display, which is familiar from the V-Class. In conjunction with the COMAND Online multimedia system it has a screen diagonal of 8.4 inches, making it the biggest display in the segment. With a resolution of 960 x 540 pixels and the high-contrast IPS technology (In-Plane Switching), it offers a brilliant display that markedly increases the image quality of the 360-Degree Camera and the navigation maps.

The control and display concept shows the familiar high levels of convenience and ergonomic comfort. The instrument cluster consists of the large, analogue round dials from the C-Class and V-Class. In the X-Class PROGRESSIVE and POWER they are tubular. A 5.4-inch colour multimedia display is nestled between the round dials. Thanks to the push-buttons on the standard-fit three-spoke multifunction steering wheel, the settings on the colour display can be controlled without drivers having to take their hands off the steering wheel. The steering wheel with its 12 buttons in total is height-adjustable, thereby improving ergonomic posture and allowing a relaxed seating position. In the X-Class PROGRESSIVE and POWER, the steering wheel, shift lever knob and handbrake lever are also covered in leather. In conjunction with the Audio 20 CD and COMAND Online multimedia systems, and in addition to the central control unit, the X-Class contains the multifunction touchpad familiar from the passenger car model series – the multifunction touchpad is another novelty in this segment. It is located in an ergonomic position on the centre console and, like a smartphone, it can be controlled using gestures or by entering letters and characters.

Electrically adjustable comfort seats also available with lumbar support

Plenty of attention was paid to comfort when developing the seats, too. Premium materials and a seat structure featuring optimum lateral support, a high seat position and the use of ergonomically formed soft foam make sitting comfortable for both the driver and front passenger, even on longer journeys. With their clear, ergonomic and functional design, the comfort seats can be adjusted in the longitudinal direction as well as for height and backrest tilt. The X-Class POWER has electrically adjustable seats and electric two-way lumbar support as standard. The rear seat row for three people is positioned at a comfortable height and has reinforced seat side bolsters for optimum support in the outer seating positions. These seats are also equipped with attachment points for an i-Size/ISOFIX child seat as standard.

Widest selection of materials and colours in the segment

As well as various trim elements, there are six seat covers to choose from, including two leather variants with contrasting topstitching, and there are two colours for the roof liner as well. The X-Class thus provides the widest choice of materials and colours in this vehicle segment. The seats in the X-Class PURE are fitted with black Tunja fabric as standard. Black man-made leather is available as an option. The comfort seats in the PROGRESSIVE variant are covered in black posadas fabric. Familiar from the Mercedes-Benz passenger car model series, ARTICO man-made leather/DINAMICA microfibre in black is available if desired.

As standard, the X-Class POWER comes with ARTICO man-made leather/DINAMICA microfibre in black with additional contrasting topstitching in alpaca grey. Black leather with alpaca grey topstitching or nut brown leather with black topstitching are optionally available. Topstitching in a contrasting colour raises the aesthetic appeal of the seats even further. Exclusive topstitching also appears on the ARTICO man-made leather coverings on the upper section of the instrument panel, the armrests and the beltlines of the doors. This emphasises the premium effect of the interior as a whole. For the first time in this vehicle segment there are two variants of roof liner to choose from: macchiato beige fabric and black fabric. On the X-Class POWER, the A-pillar is also covered in fabric of the same colour.

Made-to-measure individualisation – Style Packages and an extensive range of accessories

Optional equipment as well as a specific Style Package for each of the PROGRESSIVE and POWER lines enable further individualisation. For example, side running boards and an electrically opening rear window can be added to the X-Class. What's more, Mercedes-Benz had an in-house team of designers and developers create an extensive range of accessories. These allow the X-Class to be modified even more to suit personal tastes and requirements – in respect to design, functionality and off-road capability. For example, there is a choice of styling bar, side bar, soft tonneau cover, hard tonneau cover and roll cover, as well as a canopy which makes the pickup look like an SUV. The canopy continues the X-Class's lines perfectly, merging with the vehicle body to create a distinctive silhouette. Other items available include a bed liner, a bed divider system, load-securing rails in the floor and a technical underguard.

High-torque, enjoyable performance with four and six cylinders

As from its market launch, there are two powerful and efficient four-cylinder engines to deliver spirited performance. The high-torque common-rail diesel drive system with a displacement of 2.3 litres is available with a choice of two power outputs. In the X 220 d with single turbocharger it generates 120 kW/163 hp and in the biturbo X 250 d no less than 140 kW/190 hp. Both diesel models are available as left- or right-hand drive vehicles with purely rear wheel drive or with engageable all-wheel drive. Due to very specific market requirements, for example in Dubai and Morocco, the 122 kW/165 hp X 200 petrol model is only available as a left-hand drive vehicle with rear wheel drive. All engines are characterised by quiet, low-vibration running and excellent power delivery coupled with low consumption figures. Power is transferred via a six-speed manual transmission. A seven-speed automatic transmission is available on request for the 140 kW/190 hp X 250 d and X 250 d 4MATIC models.

A high-torque V6 diesel engine will be released mid-2018, ensuring even greater agility on- and off-road. It will generate 190 kW/258 hp and a maximum torque of 550 Nm. With that the X 350 d occupies a leading position in the segment. The top X-Class model will come as standard with permanent 4MATIC all-wheel drive and the seven-speed automatic transmission 7G-TRONIC PLUS with steering-wheel shift paddles and ECO start/stop function. The DYNAMIC SELECT system is available in addition. To date, the inclusion of a drive program switch has been rare in the pickup segment. This technology enables the driving experience to be tailored to individual preferences – from relaxed comfort to engaged sportiness. There are five drive programs to choose from: Comfort, ECO, Sport, Manual and Offroad. These modify the engine characteristics, the automatic transmission's switching points and the ECO start/stop function.

Dynamic and comfortable driving enjoyment on a par with Mercedes-Benz passenger cars

The X-Class is the first pickup to deliver both excellent off- and on-road performance. The wide track, long wheelbase and comfortable spring and damping tuning typical of a Mercedes open up a new world of driving enjoyment and driving dynamics on the road – without resulting in compromises when off-road. A special feature in this segment: coil springs are used both at the front and the rear, which contributes to a harmonious suspension comfort. The comfort suspension is designed in such a way that it achieves a high level of driving dynamics and ride comfort on the road, while also delivering maximum off-road capability in conjunction with 4MATIC all-wheel drive. The elaborately designed comfort suspension consists of a double wishbone front axle and a rear multi-link solid axle that is ideal for transporting heavy loads and has good articulation capability. This combination ensures that the suspension is comfortable and the handling is safe given any permitted load condition.

With 1632 millimetres at the front and 1625 millimetres at the rear, the X-Class has a wider track than most competitors. This provides the ideal prerequisites for optimum driving stability and higher cornering speeds. At 3150 millimetres, the wheelbase is also longer than many other mid-size pickups. This reduces vibrations during the journey and makes for smooth and reliable straight-running stability. Mercedes-Benz is the only manufacturer in the segment to opt for large, internally vented brake discs on both axles as standard. The front axle has brake discs with a diameter of 32 centimetres and the rear axle with a diameter of 30.8 centimetres. Together they ensure short braking distances, good response times and high thermal capacity.

The comfort suspension is part of the standard equipment in all European markets. Its ground clearance is 202 millimetres. A 20-millimetre higher suspension is available as an optional extra. The increased ground clearance improves off-road capability even further, including a higher seat position and sharper off-road look. In all markets outside Europe, the X-Class comes with the higher suspension as standard. The safe and comfortable handling typical of a Mercedes is retained despite the higher suspension.

Engageable or permanent – 4MATIC all-wheel drive for any surface

Engageable 4MATIC all-wheel drive, which is available on the X 220 d 4MATIC and X 250 d 4MATIC diesel models, masters any terrain. With it, the front wheels can be engaged or disengaged by electric means depending on the surface. As from mid-2018, Mercedes-Benz will also make its pickup available with permanent all-wheel drive. This will ensure that the X-Class delivers maximum performance and traction, even at top speed on roads. The permanent 4MATIC all-wheel drive system will only be offered in conjunction with the six-cylinder engine. Off-road, both 4MATIC variants benefit from the same superior assertiveness thanks to the low-range gearing and optional differential lock on the rear axle. All the all-wheel drive models come with Downhill Speed Regulation (DSR) on board as standard.

Excellent off-road characteristics

Fording depth

600 mm

Ground clearance

Front axle 202 mm

Rear axle 221 mm for suspension with raised ground clearance

Angle of approach/departure front/rear

28.8°/23.8°

30.1°/25.9° for suspension with raised ground clearance

Maximum tilt

49.8°

49° for suspension with raised ground clearance

Ramp breakover angle

20.4°

22° for suspension with raised ground clearance

Maximum gradeability

100%

Comprehensive range of safety equipment

Like all Mercedes-Benz vehicles, the X-Class stands out for its exemplary level of safety. The pickup bearing the star comes with a comprehensive array of comfort and safety equipment that is exceptional in this vehicle segment. The X-Class’s high level of occupant protection results from its especially solid car body with a high-strength passenger cell and a structure with a front and rear that can absorb energy through well-aimed deformation. Furthermore, passive safety is provided thanks to standard equipment such as seven airbags and the i-Size attachment system for two child seats. The airbags in the front for driver and front passenger come with a two-stage, deferred triggering mechanism. For active safety, three driver assistance systems are at the ready, simultaneously increasing safety and comfort: Active Brake Assist, Lane Keeping Assist and Traffic Sign Assist. Additionally, there are Trailer Stability Assist, tyre pressure monitoring system, emergency call system, cruise control and LED headlamps that deliver the brightest light output in the segment thanks to six LEDs respectively. If required, a 360-Degree Camera is available in addition to a reversing camera. Given this extensive level of equipment, the X-Class perfectly fulfils the requirements placed on a modern family and lifestyle vehicle.

The first intelligently connected mid-size pickup

The X-Class is the first mid-size pickup to feature a communications module with an integrated SIM card. This makes it possible to use the extensive Mercedes me connect services and to access the vehicle by smartphone. Thus X-Class drivers in 21 European markets can, for example, call up useful information such as fuel level and tyre pressure, and find out the X-Class's location when it is parked or being driven by someone else. In addition, with the Mercedes me app complete door-to-door navigation is possible. Further Mercedes me connect services include the Mercedes-Benz emergency call system and the standard services Breakdown Management, Accident Recovery and Maintenance Management as well as Remote Vehicle Diagnostics.

In addition to this, control and display systems – that have already been used successfully in the Mercedes-Benz passenger car model series – are being introduced in the mid-size pickup segment for the first time: these include the multifunction touchpad and fully integrated COMAND Online multimedia system with hard-disk navigation, LINGUATRONIC voice control and internet access via smartphone. Other than COMAND Online, the proven Audio 20 USB and Audio 20 CD audio systems are also available.

First pickup with Live Traffic Information

Transferring traffic information in real time is a further highlight of intelligent connectivity thanks to the communications module with an integrated SIM card. In conjunction with an account in the Mercedes me portal, and within Europe, the COMAND Online navigation system can show the beginning and length of a traffic jam on a map to within 100 metres of the exact position and compute a dynamic route with shorter travel times. The potential loss of time is taken into account automatically in real time for the arrival time displayed by COMAND Online navigation. The system also provides a 3D view with three-dimensional urban models, making orientation in unfamiliar city centres easier. Moreover, special personal destinations can be saved or imported via SD card, and four alternate routes can be displayed on the navigation map, one of them a particularly economical variation.

In conjunction with the optional Garmin® MAP PILOT system, in most European countries the Audio 20 CD also becomes a fully-fledged navigation system with Live Traffic Information. With both systems, X-Class drivers benefit from early information about disturbances such as traffic jams, increased traffic volumes or other possible delays along the route, allowing them to adjust their route planning in good time. The relevant pre-installation for the Garmin® MAP PILOT is likewise available as an option.

Portfolio expansion in production cooperation with Renault-Nissan

With the X-Class, Mercedes-Benz Vans is expanding its portfolio to a fourth model series and is closing the gap between commercial vehicles and passenger cars. As such, the pickup marks another milestone in the growth strategy "Mercedes-Benz Vans goes global".

The pickup with the star is being manufactured in a production cooperation with the Renault-Nissan Alliance. Production for the markets in Europe, Australia and South Africa will start at the Nissan plant in Barcelona, Spain, in 2017. The X-Class for the Latin American market will roll off the assembly lines at the Renault plant in Cordoba, Argentina, starting from 2019. With the pickup, Daimler AG and the Renault-Nissan Alliance are expanding their strategic cooperation which began seven years ago. This affords Mercedes-Benz fast and cost-efficient entrance to the high-growth segment of mid-size pickups. In addition, both companies benefit from optimal utilisation of the production capacity. Nissan is the second-largest manufacturer of mid-size pickups with a payload of one tonne in the world, and can look back on more than 80 years of experience in producing and marketing these types of vehicles.


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My God does that look like a real hacked together POcheapS.  Nissan rebadge, FTL!
I guarantee it'll come to the U.S.- Daimler CANNOT HELP themselves if they see a dollar lying on the ground.

BTW: 165 HP- my wife's '09 Malibu has a 167 HP 4-cyl & a 6-spd. Could goose the tuning a bit, give it 200?  It's just so freaking sad, so much for 'The Best or Nothing'. Nothing would have been better.

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:palm:   This is the best they could do?    :rofl:

 

It's going to be  70k grand Nissan truck....and ugly to boot....

 

My thoughts.....:killitwithfire:

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The G-class pickup would be much more interesting...

Mercedes-Benz-G-Class-pick-up-truck-9.jpg

Mercedes-G-Class-Pickup-Truck-1.jpg

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Interior looks lackluster for Mercedes.  I know it isn't a luxury truck but they could have done a Metris looking interior  and door trim.  The diesels probably make good torque, but they should use the Metris inline 4 with 208 hp and 258 lb-ft as a base engine.

I am still not sure of the point of this. If they wanted to build a luxury pick up to sell in the USA they could.  And I am not sure what the demand is in Europe and Africa for this truck.

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WOW, CHEAP CHEAP CHEAP, This truly drops their star to below Korean built auto's. Pathetic, they might as well not even done it. :nono:

Jeep Kit Trucks are better than this!

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If they did bring this over here, I really don't think it would sell well. While the front end looks nice, I wish they could have changed the rear-end. In terms of luxury, it looks to be as "luxurious" as the CLA or GLA. 

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It would need an interior upgrade to make it in the USA.  Because they would have to make a luxury play.  They could use 241 hp turbo 4 as a base here, use the new 408 hp inline six as an option, no mid-size truck can touch that kind of power.  I just don't think they are interested in the pick up business.  This looks kind of half assed to sell in markets like Germany and Eastern Europe and Africa where they need a low price point and don't have much competition.

 

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16 minutes ago, smk4565 said:

It would need an interior upgrade to make it in the USA.  Because they would have to make a luxury play.  They could use 241 hp turbo 4 as a base here, use the new 408 hp inline six as an option, no mid-size truck can touch that kind of power.  I just don't think they are interested in the pick up business.  This looks kind of half assed to sell in markets like Germany and Eastern Europe and Africa where they need a low price point and don't have much competition.

 

Thank you for admitting that MB could not compete in the US for the truck business. This just proves it with this rebadge job they did.

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37 minutes ago, dfelt said:

Thank you for admitting that MB could not compete in the US for the truck business. This just proves it with this rebadge job they did.

Sorry MB, that dog won't hunt.  Next time MB, rebadge a RAM pickup instead.

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1 hour ago, dfelt said:

Thank you for admitting that MB could not compete in the US for the truck business. This just proves it with this rebadge job they did.

They could compete if they want to.  They compete just fine in commercial vans.  They could do a commercial pickup if they wanted to, I donttthink they want to.  They could build a luxury pickup if they want to, and again, I don't think they want to.

They can't do it all though.  They have probably the largest luxury line up of any car maker, plus a commercial van business, plus they are bringing out 10 electric cars by 2022, which should give them the biggest EV line in the world.

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"They could compete IF THEY WANT TO"????????
WTF happened to "The Best or Nothing" or "Engineered like No Other"???
Did they let all their product planners go?

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11 hours ago, smk4565 said:

They could compete if they want to.  They compete just fine in commercial vans.  They could do a commercial pickup if they wanted to, I donttthink they want to.  They could build a luxury pickup if they want to, and again, I don't think they want to.

They can't do it all though.  They have probably the largest luxury line up of any car maker, plus a commercial van business, plus they are bringing out 10 electric cars by 2022, which should give them the biggest EV line in the world.

Your "logic" makes no sense. Clearly they want to build a luxury truck and have put it out to prove just that. The problem is that it cannot escape it's cheap Nissan roots, end of story and it is not luxury. 

 

I guess "The Best or Nothing" simply doesn't apply here.

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This isn't a luxury truck, though...just a regular truck for markets outside the US, it sounds like...something to compete w/ the Nissan Navara (which it's based on), Mitsubishi, Toyota Hilux, Ford Ranger, Chevy/Isuzu Colorado, VW Anorak, etc... 

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They aren't selling it in the USA. So clearly they aren't interested in the pick up market here.  My point was IF they were interested, they could do it.  What if the next-gen Nissan Frontier is class leading?  We don't even know how good or bad it is because it isn't out yet. 

If Mercedes ever decided to do a pickup for the USA, it would be the best one.  Because an American market truck would be an actual luxury vehicle, and have class leading power, hell, they'd probably put a 500 hp AMG V8 in it just because that is how they roll.

Keep in mind that Ford and FCA don't make a mid-size truck for America right now either.  Where are they at?  That is their business.  Mercedes business is luxury cars, which they are winning at.

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15 minutes ago, smk4565 said:

They aren't selling it in the USA. So clearly they aren't interested in the pick up market here.  My point was IF they were interested, they could do it.  What if the next-gen Nissan Frontier is class leading?  We don't even know how good or bad it is because it isn't out yet. 

If Mercedes ever decided to do a pickup for the USA, it would be the best one.  Because an American market truck would be an actual luxury vehicle, and have class leading power, hell, they'd probably put a 500 hp AMG V8 in it just because that is how they roll.

Keep in mind that Ford and FCA don't make a mid-size truck for America right now either.  Where are they at?  That is their business.  Mercedes business is luxury cars, which they are winning at.

"What if" does not apply here because the current Frontier is what they are using and it is not "The Best" by any stretch of the imagination. It also has zero to do with them not selling it in the U.S. Other than if they did, it would be laughed out of this country in its current form. 

 

Could have, would have, should have but they didn't. That's what you don't get as a rabid Benz fanboy. Oh, and Ford is coming back to the market and I would take what they have coming over that overdressed Frontier. 

 

If

If 

If

 

You know what they say about "Ifs" right?

 

And for the record, every negative thing you have said about the Escaclade being nothing more than a gussied up Tahoe, applies here tenfold. 

22 minutes ago, Cubical-aka-Moltar said:

This isn't a luxury truck, though...just a regular truck for markets outside the US, it sounds like...something to compete w/ the Nissan Navara (which it's based on), Mitsubishi, Toyota Hilux, Ford Ranger, Chevy/Isuzu Colorado, VW Anorak, etc... 

Actually depending on your perspective, they are selling as that, only they are calling it a "premium pick up" (per their website), which it is not.

https://www.mercedes-benz.com/en/mercedes-benz/vehicles/passenger-cars/x-class/mercedes-benz-concept-x-class/

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4 minutes ago, surreal1272 said:

 

You know what they say about "Ifs" right?

Actually depending on your perspective, they are selling as that, only they are calling it a "premium pick up" (per their website), which it is not.

https://www.mercedes-benz.com/en/mercedes-benz/vehicles/passenger-cars/x-class/mercedes-benz-concept-x-class/

Premium, not luxury... 

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5 minutes ago, Cubical-aka-Moltar said:

Premium, not luxury... 

Just saying it is a matter of perspective and being that this coming from a Luxury car company, one can easily make the assumption that they are marketing the pick up much the same way.

 

IMG_0609.PNG

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7 minutes ago, surreal1272 said:

Just saying it is a matter of perspective and being that this coming from a Luxury car company, one can easily make the assumption that they are marketing the pick up much the same way.

 

IMG_0609.PNG

I suppose that is true that it is 'The World's first true premium pickup' if you consider the world outside of North America..compact/midsize pickups outside NA tend to be more functional than 'premium' or 'luxury'.... 

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49 minutes ago, surreal1272 said:

"What if" does not apply here because the current Frontier is what they are using and it is not "The Best" by any stretch of the imagination. It also has zero to do with them not selling it in the U.S. Other than if they did, it would be laughed out of this country in its current form. 

 

Could have, would have, should have but they didn't. That's what you don't get as a rabid Benz fanboy. Oh, and Ford is coming back to the market and I would take what they have coming over that overdressed Frontier. 

 

If

If 

If

 

You know what they say about "Ifs" right?

 

And for the record, every negative thing you have said about the Escaclade being nothing more than a gussied up Tahoe, applies here tenfold. 

Actually depending on your perspective, they are selling as that, only they are calling it a "premium pick up" (per their website), which it is not.

https://www.mercedes-benz.com/en/mercedes-benz/vehicles/passenger-cars/x-class/mercedes-benz-concept-x-class/

This is a 2018 Frontier chassis, This is based on the Nissan Navara or whatever it is called that the 2018 Frontier will be based on.

And yes this is is the same as the Escalade/Tahoe, but the Escalade doesn't have a Cadillac engine, at least the Mercedes truck gets a Mercedes engine and transmission.  And the Escalade is Cadillac's best money maker maybe Mercedes should go down that road.

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5 minutes ago, smk4565 said:

This is a 2018 Frontier chassis, This is based on the Nissan Navara or whatever it is called that the 2018 Frontier will be based on.

And yes this is is the same as the Escalade/Tahoe, but the Escalade doesn't have a Cadillac engine, at least the Mercedes truck gets a Mercedes engine and transmission.  And the Escalade is Cadillac's best money maker maybe Mercedes should go down that road.

File that under "big whoop" and that Cadillac engine just comes from a world beating Corvette. Yeah, sucks to be GM there. The bigger point here is that Benz is using an old bones Nissan (the platform has existed for years now so it being 2018 is irrelevant) and trying to pass it off as "premium" when it is far from it. If they are "The Best", like they advertise, then they could have used that massive R&D you like to crow about and actually come up with a pick up of their own. 

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1 hour ago, smk4565 said:

They aren't selling it in the USA. So clearly they aren't interested in the pick up market here.  My point was IF they were interested, they could do it.  What if the next-gen Nissan Frontier is class leading?  We don't even know how good or bad it is because it isn't out yet. 

If Mercedes ever decided to do a pickup for the USA, it would be the best one.  Because an American market truck would be an actual luxury vehicle, and have class leading power, hell, they'd probably put a 500 hp AMG V8 in it just because that is how they roll.

Keep in mind that Ford and FCA don't make a mid-size truck for America right now either.  Where are they at?  That is their business.  Mercedes business is luxury cars, which they are winning at.

No, MB is LOOSING at the Luxury game and only has the Profits due to the whoring out of the E class as the taxi of Europe. MB is now just another Toyota, Ford, etc.

Taking your stance, FORD is the Leader of the world due to their Truck sales numbers. So MB clearly is afraid to try and compete unlike GM.

Instead MB makes garbage CLA/GLA auto's and sells the most expensive S Class sedan per your words but with heavy discounts. 

So one has to question how much of a luxury auto maker is MB when they have to rely so heavily on the lower end market, commercial trucks, buses and vans?

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Wait, it's one thing to dump a rebadge out & call it 'premium' (as a duck under 'luxury'), but they actually had the gall to call it the 'world's first true premium pick up'???

I keep waiting for The Onion to claim responsibility for this.

  • Haha 1

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2 hours ago, dfelt said:

No, MB is LOOSING at the Luxury game and only has the Profits due to the whoring out of the E class as the taxi of Europe. MB is now just another Toyota, Ford, etc.

Taking your stance, FORD is the Leader of the world due to their Truck sales numbers. So MB clearly is afraid to try and compete unlike GM.

Instead MB makes garbage CLA/GLA auto's and sells the most expensive S Class sedan per your words but with heavy discounts. 

So one has to question how much of a luxury auto maker is MB when they have to rely so heavily on the lower end market, commercial trucks, buses and vans?

#1 in global luxury sales

#1 in American market luxury sales

#1 European market luxury sales 

#2 in Chinese market luxury sales

#1 selling full size luxury car in USA

#1 selling mid luxury car in USA
#1 selling small luxury sedan in USA

#1 selling mid luxury SUV

#2 selling full size luxury SUV

#1 selling SUV over $100k

#1 selling performance brand in AMG

Highest ATP of any full line luxury brand

Formula 1 Champion 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017 F1 points leader

How are they losing? 

2 hours ago, surreal1272 said:

File that under "big whoop" and that Cadillac engine just comes from a world beating Corvette. Yeah, sucks to be GM there. The bigger point here is that Benz is using an old bones Nissan (the platform has existed for years now so it being 2018 is irrelevant) and trying to pass it off as "premium" when it is far from it. If they are "The Best", like they advertise, then they could have used that massive R&D you like to crow about and actually come up with a pick up of their own. 

It is a new platform from the 2015-present Navara.  No relation to the current Frontier which is ancient.

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    • By William Maley
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      Press Release is on Page 2
      BUILT FOR GETTING THINGS DONE, FORD REVEALS THE TOUGHEST, MOST PRODUCTIVE F-150 EVER AND MOST POWERFUL IN ITS CLASS
      All-new Ford F-150 takes America’s truck of choice for work and recreation to the next level, targeting to deliver the most maximum towing, payload, torque and horsepower of any full-size light-duty pickup, with ingenious features that make customers even more productive and new technology like over-the-air updates and SYNC® 4 New exterior design has a bolder and even tougher look, and an all-new interior provides more comfort, technology and functionality for truck customers, along with enhanced materials, new color choices and more storage New available Tailgate Work Surface boosts productivity at the back of the truck, while new optional Interior Work Surface makes using a laptop or eating a meal more comfortable; available Max Recline Seats with nearly 180 degrees of recline help customers rest between jobs Available Pro Power Onboard™ means customers can leave the generator at home and free up cargo space; there’s enough energy to power 28 average refrigerators, charge a bed full of electric dirt bikes or run an entire job site worth of tools Class-exclusive 3.5-liter PowerBoost™ Full hybrid engine delivers Built Ford Tough capability – it is targeted to have the most torque and horsepower of any light-duty full-size pickup, at least 12,000 pounds of maximum available towing capacityᶧ and a targeted EPA-estimated range of approximately 700 miles on a single tank of gasᶧ DEARBORN, Mich., June 25, 2020 – As America returns to work, Ford reveals its all-new F-150 – part of the F-Series lineup that’s been America’s choice for getting the job done for 43 consecutive years. The all-new F-150 is purpose-built to be the toughest, most productive F-150 ever and targeted to be the most powerful light-duty full-size pickup truck on the market.
      “Since 1948, our hardworking F-Series customers have trusted Ford to help them get the job done,” said Jim Farley, Ford’s chief operating officer. “F-150 is our flagship, it’s 100 percent assembled in America, and we hold ourselves to the highest standard to make sure our customers can get the job done and continue to make a difference in their communities.”
      The all-new F-150 raises the standard for all light-duty trucks. It targets the most towing, payload, torque and horsepower of any light-duty full-size pickup, introduces all-new features to increase customer productivity, has new connected vehicle innovations such as over-the-air updates that help keep F-150 at the forefront of purposeful technology, and an available all-new 3.5-liter PowerBoost™ hybrid powertrain with Pro Power Onboard™ – an integrated power generator.
      “We see it as our duty to deliver not just what our customers want and need, but what they might have never thought possible,” said Craig Schmatz, Ford F-150 chief engineer. “The F-150 will be tougher than ever, and with fully connected over-the-air updates, it opens up a much wider range of potential enhancements – from system upgrades to feature offerings.”
      Toughest F-150 ever
      The all-new F-150 starts with a durable, proven foundation – a fully boxed high-strength steel frame with a high-strength, military-grade, aluminum alloy body. Every panel of the distinctive, rugged exterior is redesigned while maintaining its bold and tough signature look, including an updated headlamp design, new power dome hood and wrap-around bumpers. Higher front fenders, a tucked-in midsection and larger-diameter tires pulled out three-quarters of an inch create a stronger, more powerful stance on and off the road.
      There are 11 grille options available across the series lineup, all differentiated in their design and all unmistakably F-150, plus new tailgate appliqués. Functional upgrades throughout include available LED headlamps and taillamps, and available full-length extended power running boards with kick switch that provide better truck-side cargo box accessibility.
      The all-new F-150 is also the most aerodynamic ever. New active grille shutters, a new automatically deploying active air dam, and new cab and tailgate geometry all work together to reduce drag and improve fuel consumption on every truck.
      The interior is completely redesigned to elevate truck owners’ experience with style, comfort, utility and technology. Featuring enhanced materials, new color choices and more storage, it is built around the functional needs of truck customers. Every surface has been thoughtfully designed, such as more soil-resistant two-tone seats for XL or the new standard dual glovebox.
      F-150 introduces an all-new 12-inch center screen – standard on XLT high series and above – that allows customers to split the screen and control multiple functions simultaneously, including navigation, music or truck features. The landscape design strikes a balance between demands for technology accessibility and the greater convenience of physical buttons. An 8-inch touch screen, standard on XL and XLT standard and mid-series trucks, means every customer gets touch screen functionality and better rearview camera vision. Both screens feature access to the new digital owner’s manual, which can help all customers find the information they need more easily, including how-to videos for additional explanation.
      An available new 12-inch digital gauge cluster features a large information-on-demand area, along with truck-specific graphics and animations that respond to the all-new F-150’s selectable drive modes and can display off-roading data and turn-by-turn navigation.
      Most productive F-150 ever
      Ford’s deep understanding of truck customers informs new features on the all-new F-150 that help take productivity to the next level.
      Creating the ultimate durable, anywhere office, F-150’s new optional Interior Work Surface is ideal for signing documents, working on a 15-inch laptop or enjoying a meal when parked. It is available in both bench and captain’s chair seating configurations on XL to Limited. Knowing many customers prefer a console shifter, Ford has created a stowable unit for F-150, which easily folds into the center console with the push of a button and allows full access to the large work surface when in park.
      Class-exclusive Max Recline Seats available on King Ranch, Platinum and Limited models provide ultimate comfort during downtime. Max Recline Seats fold flat to nearly 180 degrees, with the bottom cushion rising to meet the back cushion and the upper back support rotating forward up to 10 degrees for maximum comfort.
      Available lockable, fold-flat rear storage adds a vault to the F-150 that extends the width of the rear seats. It’s as easy as lifting the bottom cushion of the rear seat, dropping valuables in and locking them away for safe keeping. Great for storing long items like fishing rods or blueprints, it even has a divider to keep gear organized.
      Every all-new F-150 comes standard with new cleats mounted to the sides of the tailgate to act as tie-down locations for extra-long items in the bed. New clamp pockets are built in to the tailgate of every truck, so customers can hold materials down for precision work. An available flat Tailgate Work Surface also includes integrated rulers, a mobile device holder, cupholder and pencil holder.
      Customers can keep going into the night with exclusive available Zone Lighting. This allows occupants to turn on and off individual sections of exterior lights through the SYNC® 4 screen or remotely with the FordPass app on their phone, so they never have to work, camp or do anything in the dark.
      The all-new F-150 is the only light-duty full-size pickup to offer available Trailer Reverse Guidance and Pro Trailer Backup Assist. Trailer Reverse Guidance, made popular on Super Duty, uses the truck’s high-resolution cameras to provide multiple views along with helpful graphics that tell drivers which way to turn the steering wheel while backing up. Pro Trailer Backup Assist, which makes backing up a trailer as easy as turning a dial, continues on F-150.
      Most powerful in its class
      The all-new 3.5-liter PowerBoost full hybrid V6 powertrain is targeted to deliver the most torque and horsepower of any light-duty full-size pickup. Available on every trim level from F-150 XL to Limited, the no-compromise PowerBoost system – the only light-duty full-size pickup to offer a full hybrid – adds instant electric torque to Ford’s 3.5-liter EcoBoost® V6. It is targeting an EPA-estimated range of approximately 700 miles on a single tank of gasᶧ and will deliver at least 12,000 pounds of available maximum towing – equivalent to the average weight of 43 NFL linemen.
      PowerBoost combines Ford’s proven EcoBoost engine and 10-speed SelectShift® automatic transmission with a 35-kilowatt (47-horsepower) electric motor integrated into the transmission, as well as software calibrated specially for truck use, including drive modes like tow/haul mode to help customers better manage towing heavy trailers.
      The electric motor applies regenerative braking energy capture to help recharge the 1.5-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery. The battery is efficiently packaged underneath the truck, leaving the cab and cargo box of PowerBoost F-150 as spacious for passengers and cargo as other comparably equipped F-150 models. The system is capable of sustained battery usage at extreme outside temperatures or under heavy loads.
      Power isn’t only important under the hood. Available Pro Power Onboard expands F-150’s capability by bringing generator levels of exportable power to work sites, camp sites and everyday life. Pro Power Onboard is available with a 2.0-kilowatt output on optional gas engines, while PowerBoost-equipped F-150 comes standard with 2.4 kilowatts of output or an optional 7.2 kilowatts of output. Power is accessible through in-cabin outlets and up to four cargo bed-mounted 120-volt 20-amp outlets, with a 240-volt 30-amp outlet on the 7.2-kilowatt version. The system even provides power on the move to charge tool batteries in between jobs.
      Most connected F-150 ever
      F-150 represents Ford’s next big step in bringing connected vehicles to customers. The all-new F-150 is North America’s first full-size pickup with standard over-the-air updates, helping customers’ trucks stay at the forefront of purposeful technology. These updates are bumper-to-bumper, and can include all-new functions and additional features throughout the life of the truck. They can support preventative maintenance, reduce repair trips, provide improved performance and ultimately result in more vehicle up-time. The majority of updates will be completed in under two minutes and can be performed at times customers choose, so they won’t have to put their lives on hold.
      All-new SYNC 4 is standard, helping keep owners connected and make their days more productive with more natural voice control available as well as real-time mapping and customizable information on demand. The technology builds on more than 10 years of SYNC innovation by helping minimize distractions with hands-free voice control as well as core features such as making phone calls and selecting music. With twice the computing power of the previous-generation system, new SYNC 4 can wirelessly connect smartphones without the USB cord for seamless integration of Apple CarPlay™ or Android Auto™ compatibility as well as SYNC AppLink® apps like Waze and Ford+Alexa.
      Customers can access more than 10,000 hours of on-demand content, live channels, ad-free music, sports, entertainment, news and personalized recommendations, and they can search for related content with available SiriusXM with 360L satellite and streaming service. The new eight-speaker B&O Sound System by Bang & Olufsen is available starting on F-150 XLT, while the optional 18-speaker B&O Unleashed system with speakers in the headliner and front headrests is available on F-150 Lariat, King Ranch and Platinum, and standard on Limited.
      Ford offers complimentary technology including 911 Assist® that automatically alerts emergency responders in the event of an accident, and FordPass, a mobile device app that allows Ford drivers to start or unlock their vehicle from a distance, as well as control new truck-focused features like Zone Lighting, Trailer Theft Alert, Trailer Light Check and Pro Power Onboard.
      Driver-assist technologies
      All-new F-150 offers the latest driver-assist features as part of Ford Co-Pilot360™ 2.0. More features are now standard on XL, including Pre-Collision Assist with Automatic Emergency Braking and Pedestrian Detection to help avoid a possible collision with another vehicle or a pedestrian, rearview camera with dynamic hitch assist, auto high-beam headlamps and auto on/off headlamps.
      F-150 also adds 10 new driver-assist features and is the only pickup to offer Active Drive Assist, which allows for hands-free driving on more than 100,000 miles of divided highways in all 50 states and Canada. Its advanced driver-facing camera tracks head position and driver eye gaze to enable hands-free driving when available. It allows owners on certain sections of pre-mapped, divided highways to drive with their hands off the steering wheel – if they continue to pay attention to the road ahead – granting them an additional level of comfort during long drives. The Active Drive Assist prep kit contains the hardware required for this feature, while the software to enable functionality, expected in the third quarter of the 2021 calendar year, will be delivered by over-the-air update or dealer visit. Separate payment will be required to activate full functionality at that time.
      Other new available features include Intersection Assist, which detects oncoming traffic while the driver is attempting a left turn. If there is risk of a collision with an oncoming vehicle, F-150 will apply the brakes to mitigate or avoid it. F-150 is the only light-duty full-size pickup with available Active Park Assist 2.0, which handles all steering, shifting, braking and accelerator controls during a parallel or perpendicular parking maneuver while the driver holds down a button.
      Every F-150 is proudly assembled at Ford’s Dearborn Truck Plant in Dearborn, Michigan, and Kansas City Assembly Plant in Claycomo, Missouri. The all-new F-150 will be available this fall.
      ᶧProjected EPA calculated range. Actual range will vary. Final EPA-estimated ratings available later in the 2020 calendar year.
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    • By William Maley
      Volkswagen unveiled an updated 2021 Arteon tonight. Now you might be thinking this is a quick turn around as the Arteon has been on sale in the U.S. for only a year. But you need to keep in mind that Volkswagen has been selling the Arteon in Europe since 2018, so a refresh was in the cards.
      Changes for the exterior are subtile with a more prominent grille, new lighting, updated Volkswagen badging, and new choices for paint and wheels. The interior is a bit more dramatic with updated dash featuring revised air vents and climate control system with touch controls. A new steering wheel with touch controls, improved materials, and the 10.25-inch Digital Cockpit becoming standard on all Arteons finishes off the changes.
      Power for the U.S. will remain the turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder with 268 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. This is paired with an eight-speed automatic that routes power to either the front or Volkswagen's 4Motion all-wheel drive system.
      There are some versions we'll be missing out on such as a new Shooting Brake (aka wagon), a 315 horsepower R model, and a plug-in hybrid powertrain.
      No word on pricing, but you'll be able to pick up a 2021 Arteon at your Volkswagen dealer sometime in November.
      Source: Volkswagen
      Press Release is on Page 2


      2021 Volkswagen Arteon world premiere

      Jun 23, 2020
      Brand halo is updated inside and out—a new front end impresses with sharpened design elements and available illuminated grille, while inside, a new cockpit offers greater levels of refinement Digital Cockpit standard across lineup European offering includes new Arteon Shooting Brake, as well as plug-in hybrid (160 kW / 218 PS) and Volkswagen R-developed performance (235 kW / 320 PS) powertrains Herndon, VA — The Arteon is Volkswagen’s Gran Turismo—marrying the sleek design of a premium coupe to the space of a midsize sedan. For 2021, Volkswagen is introducing an extensive product line update to the brand halo, including sharpened design elements, interior refinements, and intelligent comfort systems. In Europe, Volkswagen is enhancing the product line with a second version—the new Arteon Shooting Brake—alongside new powertrain options including a plug-in hybrid drivetrain generating 160 kW (218 PS) and Arteon R versions with 235 kW (320 PS).
      For 2021, the U.S. market Volkswagen Arteon features a simplified trim lineup—SE, SEL R-Line, and SEL Premium R-Line.
      Exterior
      The refreshed Arteon features a refined front end with sharpened design elements. The long, wide hood stretches across the entire front profile to the wheelarches to form the shoulder section. At the front it reaches far down into the grille, emphasizing the ample width of the Arteon with its crossbars. It’s not just avant-garde, it’s also aerodynamic—with a drag coefficient of a mere 0.265.
      For the first time, the Arteon can also be configured with an illuminated grille. On midrange models, new LED daytime running lights (DRLs) connect to form a central light bar in the grille, surrounding the new Volkswagen logo and using light as the new chrome. Consequently, the Arteon has been given a new and unmistakable daytime and night-time lighting signature.
      The lower section of the front profile, the front apron, has also been modified. Up to now, this area featured four chrome bars. These have now been transformed into three significantly more striking chrome bars. The outer and bottom segments of the front apron are always the same color as the vehicle’s paintwork (except the lateral air intake grilles). How the equipment scopes differ: the SE trim now has two additional, separate air intake openings in front of the front wheels, as well as a chrome bar that has been integrated above the front spoiler. In contrast, the R-Line features one larger, continuous, bottom air intake above the front spoiler that is surrounded by a C-shaped section on the outside in front of the front wheels, which has been painted in the main vehicle color.
      As drawn, the character line runs around the entire car. It visually presses the body’s volume downward to the ground, giving it a dynamic appearance. The character line starts in the radiator grille at the front and runs smoothly across the silhouette up to the tail light clusters. At the rear it transforms into a sharp undercut that visually reduces the Arteon’s height and carries the strong shoulder section towards the rear. At the rear, the VW badge and Arteon lettering have been redesigned.
      Three new colors are added for model year 2021—Oryx White, Kings Red Metallic, and Lapiz Blue.
      Interior
      On the inside, Arteon has been equipped with a redesigned cockpit that has been refined to match the model’s exclusive nature. Volkswagen’s interior designers have redesigned the entire dash panel—consisting of surfaces, air outlets, and trims—the center console, including infotainment section and air-conditioning control, and the top sections of the door trims. The fabrics and leather in the vehicle interior have also been upgraded.
      At the dash panel’s top-most level, new leatherette surfaces stand out by having been refined are more pronounced with decorative seams to visually build a bridge to Volkswagen’s luxury-class SUV, the Touareg. On the second level, new aluminum décor graces base models, while midrange models offer translucent aluminum décor with 30-color ambient lighting The air outlets, stretching up to the third dash panel level, have been redesigned and also fully integrated here.
      A new generation of multifunction steering wheels featuring digital touch surfaces are used in the Arteon. In combination with the Travel Assist system (see below), the steering wheel rim additionally features touch-sensitive surfaces which, once Travel Assist has been activated, detect whether the driver has at least one hand on the steering wheel for safety reasons.
      The temperature can now be set intuitively via a touchslider for the optional three-zone Climatronic® automatic climate control. The same applies to the blower function in the manual mode. Seat heating, windscreen and window defrosting functions as well as other air conditioner regulations are also controlled using new touch-sensitive surfaces in the center console.
      The Arteon is equipped with the Volkswagen Digital Cockpit, which allows the driver to configure the instrument display. The graphics of the 10.25-inch display are clear and of a high quality. The driver can quickly and easily switch between three basic layouts using a View button on the multifunction steering wheel.
      Arteon adopts the all-new MIB3 infotainment system, integrated in a clearly visible and easy-to-reach position above the new air-conditioning controls. All models come standard with the 8.0-inch Discover Media system with navigation. MIB3 offers natural voice control, multi-phone pairing that can easily switch between devices, and wireless App-Connect. Wireless charging is also new for 2021.
      Volkswagen is also offering a newly developed, high-end sound system made by audio specialists harman/kardon for the very first time. It has been specifically geared towards the Arteon product line. The system uses a 700-watt, 16-channel Ethernet amplifier to power a total of twelve high-performance loudspeakers. One loudspeaker acts as the center speaker in the newly designed dash panel while another operates as a subwoofer in the trunk. The remaining treble, mid-range, and bass loudspeakers have been arranged in the doors. The infotainment system coordinates the individual sound control of the harman/kardon sound system which also provides pre-configured settings, such as Pure, Chill out, Live and Energy.
      Powertrain
      The Arteon is powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged and direct-injection TSI® engine, making 268 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. The power is taken to the front wheels via a standard eight-speed automatic transmission with Tiptronic® shifting; 4Motion all-wheel drive is available on SEL R-Line models and standard on SEL Premium R-Line models.

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      Volkswagen unveiled an updated 2021 Arteon tonight. Now you might be thinking this is a quick turn around as the Arteon has been on sale in the U.S. for only a year. But you need to keep in mind that Volkswagen has been selling the Arteon in Europe since 2018, so a refresh was in the cards.
      Changes for the exterior are subtile with a more prominent grille, new lighting, updated Volkswagen badging, and new choices for paint and wheels. The interior is a bit more dramatic with updated dash featuring revised air vents and climate control system with touch controls. A new steering wheel with touch controls, improved materials, and the 10.25-inch Digital Cockpit becoming standard on all Arteons finishes off the changes.
      Power for the U.S. will remain the turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder with 268 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. This is paired with an eight-speed automatic that routes power to either the front or Volkswagen's 4Motion all-wheel drive system.
      There are some versions we'll be missing out on such as a new Shooting Brake (aka wagon), a 315 horsepower R model, and a plug-in hybrid powertrain.
      No word on pricing, but you'll be able to pick up a 2021 Arteon at your Volkswagen dealer sometime in November.
      Source: Volkswagen
      Press Release is on Page 2


      2021 Volkswagen Arteon world premiere

      Jun 23, 2020
      Brand halo is updated inside and out—a new front end impresses with sharpened design elements and available illuminated grille, while inside, a new cockpit offers greater levels of refinement Digital Cockpit standard across lineup European offering includes new Arteon Shooting Brake, as well as plug-in hybrid (160 kW / 218 PS) and Volkswagen R-developed performance (235 kW / 320 PS) powertrains Herndon, VA — The Arteon is Volkswagen’s Gran Turismo—marrying the sleek design of a premium coupe to the space of a midsize sedan. For 2021, Volkswagen is introducing an extensive product line update to the brand halo, including sharpened design elements, interior refinements, and intelligent comfort systems. In Europe, Volkswagen is enhancing the product line with a second version—the new Arteon Shooting Brake—alongside new powertrain options including a plug-in hybrid drivetrain generating 160 kW (218 PS) and Arteon R versions with 235 kW (320 PS).
      For 2021, the U.S. market Volkswagen Arteon features a simplified trim lineup—SE, SEL R-Line, and SEL Premium R-Line.
      Exterior
      The refreshed Arteon features a refined front end with sharpened design elements. The long, wide hood stretches across the entire front profile to the wheelarches to form the shoulder section. At the front it reaches far down into the grille, emphasizing the ample width of the Arteon with its crossbars. It’s not just avant-garde, it’s also aerodynamic—with a drag coefficient of a mere 0.265.
      For the first time, the Arteon can also be configured with an illuminated grille. On midrange models, new LED daytime running lights (DRLs) connect to form a central light bar in the grille, surrounding the new Volkswagen logo and using light as the new chrome. Consequently, the Arteon has been given a new and unmistakable daytime and night-time lighting signature.
      The lower section of the front profile, the front apron, has also been modified. Up to now, this area featured four chrome bars. These have now been transformed into three significantly more striking chrome bars. The outer and bottom segments of the front apron are always the same color as the vehicle’s paintwork (except the lateral air intake grilles). How the equipment scopes differ: the SE trim now has two additional, separate air intake openings in front of the front wheels, as well as a chrome bar that has been integrated above the front spoiler. In contrast, the R-Line features one larger, continuous, bottom air intake above the front spoiler that is surrounded by a C-shaped section on the outside in front of the front wheels, which has been painted in the main vehicle color.
      As drawn, the character line runs around the entire car. It visually presses the body’s volume downward to the ground, giving it a dynamic appearance. The character line starts in the radiator grille at the front and runs smoothly across the silhouette up to the tail light clusters. At the rear it transforms into a sharp undercut that visually reduces the Arteon’s height and carries the strong shoulder section towards the rear. At the rear, the VW badge and Arteon lettering have been redesigned.
      Three new colors are added for model year 2021—Oryx White, Kings Red Metallic, and Lapiz Blue.
      Interior
      On the inside, Arteon has been equipped with a redesigned cockpit that has been refined to match the model’s exclusive nature. Volkswagen’s interior designers have redesigned the entire dash panel—consisting of surfaces, air outlets, and trims—the center console, including infotainment section and air-conditioning control, and the top sections of the door trims. The fabrics and leather in the vehicle interior have also been upgraded.
      At the dash panel’s top-most level, new leatherette surfaces stand out by having been refined are more pronounced with decorative seams to visually build a bridge to Volkswagen’s luxury-class SUV, the Touareg. On the second level, new aluminum décor graces base models, while midrange models offer translucent aluminum décor with 30-color ambient lighting The air outlets, stretching up to the third dash panel level, have been redesigned and also fully integrated here.
      A new generation of multifunction steering wheels featuring digital touch surfaces are used in the Arteon. In combination with the Travel Assist system (see below), the steering wheel rim additionally features touch-sensitive surfaces which, once Travel Assist has been activated, detect whether the driver has at least one hand on the steering wheel for safety reasons.
      The temperature can now be set intuitively via a touchslider for the optional three-zone Climatronic® automatic climate control. The same applies to the blower function in the manual mode. Seat heating, windscreen and window defrosting functions as well as other air conditioner regulations are also controlled using new touch-sensitive surfaces in the center console.
      The Arteon is equipped with the Volkswagen Digital Cockpit, which allows the driver to configure the instrument display. The graphics of the 10.25-inch display are clear and of a high quality. The driver can quickly and easily switch between three basic layouts using a View button on the multifunction steering wheel.
      Arteon adopts the all-new MIB3 infotainment system, integrated in a clearly visible and easy-to-reach position above the new air-conditioning controls. All models come standard with the 8.0-inch Discover Media system with navigation. MIB3 offers natural voice control, multi-phone pairing that can easily switch between devices, and wireless App-Connect. Wireless charging is also new for 2021.
      Volkswagen is also offering a newly developed, high-end sound system made by audio specialists harman/kardon for the very first time. It has been specifically geared towards the Arteon product line. The system uses a 700-watt, 16-channel Ethernet amplifier to power a total of twelve high-performance loudspeakers. One loudspeaker acts as the center speaker in the newly designed dash panel while another operates as a subwoofer in the trunk. The remaining treble, mid-range, and bass loudspeakers have been arranged in the doors. The infotainment system coordinates the individual sound control of the harman/kardon sound system which also provides pre-configured settings, such as Pure, Chill out, Live and Energy.
      Powertrain
      The Arteon is powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged and direct-injection TSI® engine, making 268 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. The power is taken to the front wheels via a standard eight-speed automatic transmission with Tiptronic® shifting; 4Motion all-wheel drive is available on SEL R-Line models and standard on SEL Premium R-Line models.
    • By William Maley
      It isn't a good sign when a fair number of automotive writers (myself included) looks at a new vehicle and wonders, what's different? That is the case with the new 2021 Lexus IS which was unveiled last night.
      The exterior for the most part is unchanged from the current IS. The only changes we can spot include,
      a new "three-dimensional" version of the Spindle Grille spilt headlight arrangement has been dropped for a new single headlight setup more prominent shoulder line 18-inch wheels are standard on the IS, while 19-inch BBS wheels are optional for F-Sport versions full-width LED taillight bar that seamlessly integrates with the rear lights grows in length and width by 1.2-inches, and is 0.2-inches lower in ride height Not much has changed with the IS' interior aside from new 8 and 10-inch infotainment systems finally getting touchscreens, along with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and Amazon Alexa intergration.
      The engine lineup is unchanged with the turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder (badged as IS 300) with 241 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque serving as the base. Next is a detuned version of 3.5L V6 with 260 hp and 236 lb-ft for the IS 300 AWD. Completing the lineup is the regular 3.5L V6 pumping 311 horsepower and 280 pound-feet for the IS 350. RWD models get an eight-speed automatic, while AWD models make do with a six-speed automatic.
      So what has changed for the 2021 IS? It is all under the skin. The suspension has been reworked with lighter a-arms, coil springs, and stabilizer bar. There is also a new Dynamic Handling Package for F-Sport models. This includes adaptive dampers and a Torsen limited-slip differential (only for RWD models).
      No word on pricing, but expect to see the 2021 IS arrive at Lexus dealers sometime in late fall.
      Source: Lexus
      Press Release is on Page 2
      2021 LEXUS IS: AGILITY AND ATHLETICISM EXPAND PURE DRIVING PERFORMANCE
      New 2021 IS first Lexus to debut Lexus Driving Signature Tested and developed at new technical center in Shimoyama, Japan Driving performance enhanced through rigidity, chassis and suspension enhancements New Lexus Safety System+ 2.5 offers enhanced standard safety features New multimedia system with available 10.3-inch touchscreen PLANO, Texas (June 15, 2020) – Writing yet another chapter in the book of compact luxury sports sedans, the new 2021 Lexus IS was unveiled today via a unique and engaging online virtual reveal. Since its debut nearly 20 years ago in the U.S., the IS has thrived on creating exhilarating driving performance in the form of a true rear-wheel-drive luxury sports sedan. The IS has served as a whetstone to help sharpen Lexus driving performance across the lineup but, more directly, it has forged indelible bonds between driver and machine that reach into the hundreds of thousands. It’s no wonder the IS has earned worldwide adoration for its extraordinary driving performance.
      There may be no greater fan of IS than Toyota President Akio Toyoda, who notes the vehicle’s special place in his heart during the introduction to the Art of Lexus book, where he credits the IS as “The car that really taught me what performance driving was, and it was the moment when my love affair with Lexus began.”
      The new 2021 IS, which is expected to arrive in dealerships in late fall of this year, looks to expand upon the legacy it has carved out in the compact luxury sports car segment over the previous two decades. Truly a global vehicle, it will be available for sale in approximately 40 countries around the world, including the US, Japan, and other countries in Asia.
      The Lexus Driving Signature Lives at Shimoyama
      From day one, the IS has left a lasting impression in the compact luxury sports sedan segment, where dynamic capability and driving performance are mandatory attributes. The 2021 IS looks to further cement the bond between driver and vehicle by providing an enhanced linear driving characteristic that provides clear and direct feedback to the driver. In order to achieve this objective, Lexus engineers needed the proper tool with which to hone the vehicle’s skills.
      Enter the Toyota Technical Center Shimoyama. More than merely a new test facility, this asphalt track signals a change in Lexus’ product development course and speaks to the brand’s commitment to its human-centered nature.
      Since Lexus launched, the tactile feel, behavior, and execution for each model has been driven by the vision and efforts of the Chief Engineer. Moving forward, the efforts of the CE will be focused on elevating the vehicles to a new standard of performance and handling as developed by Lexus International President Koji Sato and Chief Branding officer Akio Toyoda. The ultimate goal is to deliver a new generation of Lexus vehicles that is more balanced, refined in control, and confident than ever before. Linear steering, brake responses, and optimized handling with exceptional ride quality is the result of heightened focus on tuning of the chassis and its interactions with the control surfaces through diligent evaluation at a test facility unlike any other.
      By establishing a uniform Lexus Driving Signature across the entire lineup, the hope is to continue propelling the brand’s evolution and reinforce its identity in the luxury space. This cultural shift within Lexus product development builds on the learnings and improvements seen on the F brand cars, and the latest models of the flagship vehicles (LC, LS, LX) that involve an “Always On” philosophy for continual, running enhancement. Over the past 30 years, Lexus has been defined by the detail-oriented and thoughtful nature of its products. The latest IS represents the first step down a path that has evolved into a uniquely Lexus tarmac testbed that will affect the trajectory of every Lexus product that comes next.
      “What we had foremost in mind in developing the new IS was to make it a car that excelled in communicating with the driver regardless of the road conditions or driving situation,” said Chief Engineer Naoki Kobayashi of Lexus International. “We aimed to make the new IS a Lexus compact sports sedan that provides high-quality riding comfort while offering a high level of vehicle control.”
      Opened in 2019, the Toyota Technical Center Shimoyama in Japan’s Aichi Prefecture is near Lexus’s global headquarters. Its country road test course is inspired by Lexus’s many years of experience driving on Germany’s Nürburgring Nordschleife, famous throughout the world for its grueling driving conditions. Much like the IS itself, Nürburgring is near and dear to Akio Toyoda’s heart since it played a key role in his quest to become a master driver. The 3.3-mile test course at Shimoyama is designed to take advantage of the local topography, and it features a nearly 250-foot change in elevation, a wide range of curves and corners, and multiple types of road surfaces. Developing the new IS in such a severe driving environment made it possible to infuse an ever-higher dimension of vehicle performance.
      Maturation of Driving Performance
      With a new tool at its disposal, Chief Engineer Kobayashi’s team worked tirelessly to make the new IS the best to date. The Lexus philosophy of continuously improving meant no stone was left unturned. Countless test hours at the Shimoyama track and other test facilities were conducted on various road surfaces and conditions to identify ways to increase responsiveness and reduce unnecessary movement from unsprung mass. The “relentless pursuit of perfection” has always been a guiding philosophy for the brand, but also at stake is the mission to create a uniform Lexus Driving Signature, and that objective begins with the new IS.
      One of the first things engineers targeted was enhancing body rigidity. This was done in key areas such as reinforcing the radiator side supports, increasing the number of front-side-member weld points, and optimizing reinforcement structures from the C-pillars to the sides of the roof. The increased rigidity not only helps reduce unwanted noise and vibration, but it also helps improve riding comfort and driving performance with enhanced response to steering input.
      For the first time, the new IS will be available with larger 19-inch wheels to improve cornering force and provide a greater contact patch with the road. Engineers revised the suspension layout and front pickup points to help accommodate the larger tire-and-wheel package. Overall two different 19-inch wheels are available on F SPORT models, including a unique BBS wheel specific to the F SPORTs equipped with the Dynamic Handling Package. Standard 18-inch wheels will replace the outgoing 17-inch wheels on all other models.
      Taking a cue from the Lexus LFA supercar, engineers took rigidity enhancements one step further by employing lighter weight hub bolts to secure each wheel to the new IS. The use of hub bolts allows for improved fastening strength and therefore an increase to rigidity to further enhance braking and handling. What’s more, the move to hub bolts sheds approximately 2 pounds of total unsprung weight. The new bolts also feature a black coating so as not to draw any attention away from the attractive new wheel designs.
      Complementing the enhancements to overall rigidity, multiple refinements were made to the suspension setup. For starters, engineers targeted a reduction in unsprung weight. The new IS features coil springs that are 20 percent lighter than the outgoing model. New A-arms are employed as well that feature a forged aluminum material versus the outgoing steel composition, resulting in an 18 percent weight reduction. Engineers also opted for a new material for the suspension stabilizer bar to optimize the diameter and thickness to provide a 17 percent weight reduction.
      With unsprung weight reduced, engineers equipped the IS with new swing-valve shock absorbers equipped with ultralow-velocity valves in their pistons to manage oil flow in response to the most minor of road irregularities. Even when the stroke speed of the shock absorbers is low, the new velocity valves provide excellent responsiveness to apply appropriate damping force on all varieties of road surfaces. The result is consistently even ride quality. New bound stoppers are also employed to help manage the sprung weight more effectively for enhanced ride comfort.
      Fast, Fun, Ferocious – Putting the “F” in F SPORT
      The IS F SPORT lineup is restructured in the 2021 model year, as F SPORTs will only be offered on the IS 350 powered by the 311-horsepower 3.5-liter V6 engine. F SPORT features a host of visual and performance cues that immediately set it apart, including a unique front bumper with functional aerodynamic enhancements, rear bumper, grille surround, rear lip spoiler, rocker molding and more. Along with F SPORT 19-inch wheels, a unique center cap and larger rear tires for added performance (265/35R19), they are also equipped with a cool air intake with sound generator and an F SPORT exhaust and diffuser. In addition, unique F SPORT badges adorn the sides and rear of the vehicle as well.
      Inside the new IS, stainless-steel scuff plates adorn the door sills. Eyes are immediately drawn to the stylish F SPORT front seats, especially when dressed in the available new Circuit Red option. The front seats also offer standard heated and ventilated functions. A heated leather-wrapped steering wheel with unique center ornament, perforated leather-wrapped shifter and F SPORT combination instrumentation meter await the driver, as do unique F SPORT accelerator pedal, brake pedal and footrest. The distinctive front seats offer available two-way power adjustable lumbar support as well as four-way adjustable headrests. Unique F SPORT door accents are highlighted with black geometric film window switch surrounds. Active Sound Control has been improved to further enhance the exhilarating performance notes of the V6 engine while reducing unpleasant tones.
      F SPORT models can be further augmented with the addition of a Dynamic Handling Package (DHP) that includes Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS). For 2021, engineers have optimized the damping force of the AVS system to help enhance performance. In addition, the DHP also includes lighter 19-inch forged alloy BBS wheels finished in matte black. Not only are they impressive looking, the 19-inch BBS wheels are approximately 4 pounds lighter per wheel compared to the standard 19-inch F SPORT wheel.
      The RWD F SPORT models with the DHP are equipped with a Torsen® limited slip differential (LSD) that improves handling and performance thanks to enhanced traction when cornering or exiting turns. The LSD helps maintain straight-line stability as well. F SPORT models equipped with the DHP also feature drive select mode Sport S+, which provides advanced engine and transmission mapping to enhance performance. Sport S+ also adjusts the amount of EPS steering assist and damping force to deliver sportier handling to match the updated powertrain settings. Custom Mode is available on DHP models, offering multiple combinations for powertrain (Normal/Eco/Power), chassis (Normal/Sport) and air conditioner (Normal/Eco).
      F SPORT models equipped with the DHP receive a unique carbon-fiber rear spoiler and side-view mirror caps, center console knee pad with contrast stitching, and a Lexus Card Key.
      Athletically Inclined & Designed
      The bold new exterior styling of the 2021 IS not only aims for a provocative design, but its athletic silhouette is also meant to signify the agile changes that have taken place below the sheet metal. Overall, the new IS evokes lower, wider proportions. It is slightly wider, with muscular fenders that extend to enhance and accommodate the larger available 19-inch wheels and larger diameter tires. The wide and low form nods to the inherently high level of driving performance the IS possesses, but the sleek lines are also complemented with overtly aggressive sharpness carved into the side and shoulder character lines.
      2021 IS Specifications

      Starting at the front of the new IS, a newly designed spindle grille features a three-dimensional, polyhedral structure that originates from the foremost tip of the grille to emphasize a sense of presence. On F SPORT models, block forms based on a spindle motif combine with a mesh pattern to achieve a sporty impression. F SPORT models also feature a grille-bottom air intake that allows air to flow through to assist in cooling the brakes, a design inspired by the RC F.  Standard IS models feature a new grille that includes mini spindles within its design. This intricate pattern required six different types of cutting tools in order to create the mold.
      New slender headlamps are fitted on the IS that feature daytime running lights with a sharp L-shape signature that runs across the lateral axis just above the newly developed compact and lightweight lamp units. These new headlamps help contribute to expressing a low center of gravity through low-positioned areas around the grille, and they are matched by lowered side character lines that carry all the way through to the rear of trunk. Available triple-beam LED headlights are also redesigned to complement the low-profile hood.
      New rocker panels accent the side profile of the new IS with a design that kicks up in the rear, featuring a sharper overall contour that carries into the muscular shoulders over the rear wheel wells. Gently sloped rear-quarter pillars, which help form a firm cabin silhouette that wraps around from the sides, contrast with the rear fenders to further enhance the aggressive look.
      Moving toward the back of the IS, lines of the rear fenders blend into the extended, lowered rear deck to create a low stance that enhances the wider hips. The three-dimensional form of the rear deck design is created with a stamping technology called press-in mold construction. No question eyes will be drawn most immediately to the L-shaped blade-style lightbar that spans across the rear of the vehicle.
      There are five new exterior colors available on the 2021 IS, including Iridium, Cloudburst Gray, Matador Red Mica, Infrared*, and Grecian Water. These new colors will be added to other popular exterior options that include Ultra White, Eminent White Pearl, Atomic Silver, Caviar and Ultrasonic Blue Mica 2.0*.
      *Colors unique to F SPORT models, includes a premium paint charge of $595
      Bask in Cabin Comfort
      Luxury and performance are not necessarily mutually exclusive, and yet the two live in harmony in the new IS. The interior features standard NuLuxe®-trimmed seating, with 10-way power driver and 8-way power adjustable front passenger seats, a dual-zone automatic climate control system with touch-sensitive controls, an available power moonroof, and SmartAccess with push button start.
      New trim adorns each door in F SPORT models with a graphic pattern of embossed intersecting lines, representing a new form of Lexus decorative expression and Takumi craftsmanship. Decorative ornamentation is finished for the first time in Black Metallic paint, Black Geometic Film, or the unique Ash ornamentation exclusive to F SPORT models equipped with the Dynamic Handling Package. Piano Black accents also can be found on surface elements for cabin atmosphere that is both dignified and sporty. Standard NuLuxe interior color options include Black, Glazed Caramel and Rioja Red. On F SPORT packages the options include Black, Circuit Red, and two-tone White/Black, while the F SPORT Dynamic Handling Package is available in Black or Circuit Red interior.
      The IS features a standard 8-inch touchscreen nearly 3 inches closer to the driver for easy access to the controls. An expansive new 10.3-inch touchscreen is available on vehicles equipped with navigation or Mark Levinson with navigation. The new multimedia system features Apple CarPlay® compatibility, Android Auto™ compatibility, and Amazon Alexa integration.
      With Apple CarPlay compatibility, customers can access the familiar interface from their iPhone through the vehicle’s multimedia display. Simply connect an iPhone to get directions, make calls, send and receive message via Siri®, all hands free, and get access to favorite apps like Spotify, Audible® and Apple podcasts. With Android Auto, Android users can seamlessly cast their device’s interface onto the vehicle’s multimedia display, play music via apps such as Spotify® and Pandora®, send messages through a range of commonly used apps like WhatsApp®, navigate with Google Maps™, and request information—all with just the sound of your voice—through the Google Assistant™.  With Lexus+Alexa integration, you can bring all the convenience of Amazon Alexa on the road. Just ask Alexa for the same access to information and the thousands of skills available with Alexa at home. Listen to audiobooks, play favorite music, make lists, check the weather, get news briefings, and much more. Users can also control compatible smart-home devices such as lighting, thermostat and security systems. Offering added in-vehicle convenience, Alexa even syncs to the navigation system to provide on-the-go recommendations.
      The available Mark Levinson Premium Surround Sound Audio System is also enhanced, with the previous system expanding from 15 speakers with 835 watts of power to a 17-speaker system with a new amplifier offering an impressive 1,800 watts. The new Mark Levinson system aimed to reduce interference, improve output (aided by the addition of two speakers), and improve overall sound quality with new EQ tuning. Rear surround speakers have been changed to tweeter/mid-range combination Unity speakers. The audio amplifier has enhanced Quantum Logic Surround for playback of compressed sound sources and to provide a 7.1 surround sound listening experience.
      Drivetrains and Powertrains
      Although, for some, the IS can only be viewed as a rear-wheel-drive compact sports sedan, others reside in climates where all-wheel-drive is a necessity. Fortunately, the 2021 IS will be available in both rear- and all-wheel drive options, and there are three distinct powertrain options available depending upon the grade.
      The rear-wheel drive IS 300 features a 2.0-liter, turbocharged and intercooled inline four-cylinder engine. The 2.0-liter engine is updated for 2021, featuring an adaptive transmission control that helps determines the most appropriate gear for each driving situation based on driver input to achieve linear response. Rated to deliver 241 horsepower, the stout four-cylinder also produces a solid 258 lb-ft of torque across a flat torque range from 1,650 rpm all the way up to 4,400 rpm. It’s not only powerful, it’s efficient, too, thanks to a sophisticated Variable Valve Timing intelligent – Wide (VVTi-W) system which allows the engine to switch between the Otto and Atkinson combustion cycles to maximize efficiency. It comes equipped with an eight-speed Sport Direct Shift (SPDS) automatic transmission. It integrates an advanced G-force Artificial Intelligence (G-AI) system that monitors multiple performance parameters to determine the optimum gear selection.
      For added traction in cold-weather climates, the IS 300 is also available with all-wheel drive. The IS 300 AWD is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 that delivers 260 hp and 236 lb.-ft. of torque to all four wheels through a six-speed automatic transmission. The electronically controlled all-wheel drive system is designed to help enhance traction and grip by automatically varying front-to-rear torque distribution. On dry roads it maintains a 30:70 front-to-rear torque split for maximum performance, but it’s capable of sending as much as 50 percent of the power to the front wheels in certain conditions.
      For buyers who crave maximum power, there’s the IS 350 in either rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive powered by a 3.5-liter V6 that produces 311 hp and 280 lb.-ft. of peak torque. The rear-wheel drive model uses the same eight-speed Sport Direct Shift automatic transmission found in the IS 300 RWD, while the AWD version sends power through a six-speed automatic. If there’s any question about the performance-minded nature of each vehicle, look no further than their 0-60 times, as the IS 350 RWD covers the ground in 5.6 seconds while the IS 350 AWD goes from 0-60 mph in 5.7 seconds. 
      Enhanced Lexus Safety System+
      The standard Lexus Safety System+ (LSS+) found on the new IS receives additions for 2021 in the form of the new LSS+ 2.5. A number of key features that are part of the Lexus Safety System+ have been enhanced, along with the addition of a few key features.
      For starters, the Pre-Collision System (PCS), which include Frontal Collision Warning (FCW), Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB), Pedestrian Detection and Bicyclist Detection, features an enhancement to the single-lens camera and millimeter-wave radar elements to expand the response range. By enhancing the radar and camera capabilities it is now possible for the system to help detect not only the vehicle ahead but also a preceding bicyclist in daytime and even a preceding pedestrian in daytime and low-light conditions. At intersections, the system has improved recognition of an oncoming vehicle or pedestrian when performing a left-hand turn and may activate typical PCS functions if needed. Additional PCS functions include Emergency Steering Assist (ESA), which is designed to assist steering within the vehicle’s lane as cued by the driver.
      All-Speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC) can be activated above 30 mph and is designed to perform vehicle-to-vehicle distance controls down to 0 mph and can resume from a stop. DRCC also includes a new feature that allows for smooth overtaking of slower vehicles. If traveling behind a vehicle traveling slower than the preset speed, once the driver engages the turn signal the system will provide an initial increase in acceleration in preparation for changing lanes; after changing lanes, the vehicle will continue acceleration until it reaches the original preset driving speed.
      Lane Departure Alert is designed to help notify the driver if it senses the vehicle is leaving the lane without engaging a turn signal via steering wheel vibrations or audible alert. When DRCC is set and engaged, Lane Tracing Assist (LTA) is designed to provide slight steering force to help steer to the center of the lane to assist the driver with staying in the lane using lane markers or a preceding vehicle. LTA alerts the driver with a visual warning and either an audible alert or steering wheel vibration. In the new IS, the lane recognition performance, which makes LTA possible, has been improved with enhanced recognition of line and road edge, lateral G performance, and enhanced control and stability after lane change.
      Additional LSS+ 2.5 features include Intelligent High Beams, which detects preceding or oncoming vehicles and automatically switches between high beam and low beam headlights. Road Sign Assist (RSA) is designed to acquire certain road sign information using a camera and navigation maps and displays them on the multi-information display (MID). With DRCC engaged and activated, RSA can also adjust speed up to the posted speed limit if driving slower or down to the posted speed limit if driving faster than posted.
      To help IS drivers change lanes with confidence, the standard Blind Spot Monitor is designed to help detect and warn you of vehicles approaching or positioned in the adjacent lanes. Standard Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA) can offer added peace of mind by helping to detect vehicles approaching from either side while backing out with a visual and audible warning.

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