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Found 251 results

  1. A new report from Autoblog says Cadillac is planning on premiering their flagship sedan, possibly named LTS, at next year's New York Auto Show. A source at the company says the brand is preparing their competitor to the Audi A8, BMW 7-Series, and Mercedes-Benz S-Class to be shown at New York. The source dismisses the current XTS as a placeholder, and not a "real" Cadillac. The source admits that the new S-Class is a tough competitor to upcoming model. Sadly, no information on powertrains or other key details were revealed. Source: Autoblog William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. View full article
  2. Toyota isn't resting on its laurels with the Camry. Even though the company redesigned the model back in 2012, new competitors are threatening the Camry's midsize sedan sales crown. So the company went back to the drawing board and came up with the 2015 Camry, shown today at the New York Auto Show. Toyota says the 2015 model has been rebuilt from the ground-up with more than 2,000 new parts in a effort to make the new model a bit more exciting, something Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda has mandated. The exterior has grown in length by 1.8 inches and features a 0.4 inch wider track. Up front is styling that is similar to the new Corolla with a wider and more prominent grille and wraparound headlights. In the back is a Avalon-like trunk lid and new taillights. Moving inside, Toyota has added more premium and soft-touch materials throughout the cabin. There is a redesigned center stack with the latest version of Toyota's Entune infotainment system and a new 4.2 inch color screen in the instrument cluster. Powertrains carry over from the current model, which means a 2.5L four-cylinder engine will be the base, followed by the 3.5L V6. Hybrid models stick with 2.5L Atkinson-cycle four-cylinder paired with an electric motor and CVT. What has changed is Toyota trying to up the sporty-ness with the Camry by adding more spot welds to the chassis, revised suspension, retuned electric power steering, and a new two-stage brake booster. The Camry also gains two more trim levels for more sport. First is the XSE which adds unique 18-inch wheels, shock absorbers, firmer bushings, higher rate coil springs, and unique steering tuning. Then there is the Hybrid SE which gets its own tuning to the suspension and chassis reinforcements. The 2015 Camry arrives at dealers this fall. Source: Toyota Press Release is on Page 2 More Than Skin Deep: America's Best-Selling Car Gets Even Better With a Sweeping Redesign for 2015 Toyota Camry rebuilt from the ground up with almost 2,000 new parts New, sporty XSE and Hybrid SE grades amp up driving dynamics Most upscale interior in segment with soft-touch materials throughout Produced by over 7,000 American team members April 16, 2014 NEW YORK (April 16, 2014) - So what do you do when you have the best-selling car in the industry for 12 straight years? You find ways to make it even better. That's exactly what Toyota did with the introduction of the new 2015 Camry. After selling almost a million of the industry's benchmark sedan since the current generation launched in 2011, Toyota stripped it down to its chassis and rebuilt it from the ground up, raising the bar yet again in the ultra-competitive mid-size sedan segment. "Customers today love the durability, quality and value that the Camry represents, but they are looking for a little more style, comfort and performance, and this 2015 Camry has all of the above," said Bob Carter, senior vice president of automotive operations of Toyota Motor Sales, USA, Inc. "This is the new Camry, and it's coming from the new Toyota." Toyota designers and engineers re-imagined nearly every exterior surface of the car. Only the roof remains unchanged. The new, upscale interior features premium, soft-touch materials throughout the spacious cabin. Advanced instrumentation with intuitive controls helps keep the driver's eyes safely on the road ahead. Underneath the striking new exterior, the chassis and body structure are bolstered with additional spot welds, enhancing rigidity for better ride quality. A retuned suspension takes the Camry's handling to a whole new level of responsiveness. Two new grades, the sporty and luxurious XSE and the eco-fun Hybrid SE, join the well-equipped entry LE and the premium XLE grade, giving customers more choice than ever before. An Expressive and Athletic Exterior The 2015 Camry's exterior is more expressive and athletic with prominent character lines. The new car is slightly longer (1.8 inches or 45 mm) and features a widened track (0.4 inches or 10 mm) that communicates a dynamic stance and presence. A pronounced body line starts from the Camry's muscular front fender and spans across the doors and rear quarter panel, conveying a sense of motion. The completely revised, more aggressive front bumper cover features a wider more prominent trapezoidal grille shape, expressing a lower center of gravity. The 2015 Camry will be available in 10 colors, including the new Celestial Silver Metallic and Ruby Flare Pearl. New Lighting Shines with Form and Function The new sleek headlamps complement the aggressive front fascia, while the front turn signal indicators and LED DRL's are integrated for an elegant appearance. The 2015 Camry will offer exterior lighting with available LED low and high-beams and auto static leveling. The Camry's rear tail lamps sweep into the tapered sheet metal at the rear of the car. A decorative garnish connects the tail lamps across the trunk lid and emphasizes its new sporty stance. A Modern, Refined Interior The interior of the new Camry is more refined than ever with premium materials, roomier feel and improved amenities. The center stack features a high-tech, upscale look that smoothly integrates with the console. The center console tray has been redesigned to increase capacity while offering a convenient power source in the storage box. The new enclosed bin in front of the shifter now offers 12v, USB and a segment-first, available wireless charging system for select smart phones. The 2015 Camry's cockpit offers intuitive top-flight in-car electronics and displays that help reduce driver stress and distraction. The instrument panel features a new 4.2-inch TFT screen nestled between the three-dimensional Optitron gauges on the SE, XLE and XSE models. The screen's color animation displays a wide range of vehicle functions and coordinates with the multimedia system to display audio, navigation, warnings and communications. Detailed stitching and trim elements finished in satin chrome convey a sophisticated appearance. Varying by model, seat cover textures range from premium cloth all of the way to genuine leather and Ultrasuede with durable, high contrast French-stitching. The Quietest Camry Ever Toyota engineers focused on reducing unwanted wind and road noise to offer an even quieter cabin. Window and door seals were improved to keep noise outside. The carpet features 30 percent more insulating material. Even the Camry's side mirrors were redesigned to better control air flow reducing turbulence and noise. Dialing Up Driving Dynamics Additional spot welds were added to the door opening flanges to increase rigidity and enable spirited handling. A combination of Macpherson struts up front, a multi-link arrangement at the rear and a stiffer body structure allows for unique suspension tuning across trim levels. The electric power steering on all Camry models is tuned for better on-center feel, better straight line stability and more direct-feeling steering inputs. In addition to improvements in steering feel, the new Camry's hydraulic system has been revised with a two-stage brake booster to improve brake feel. The Camry will continue to be available with 2.5-liter four-cylinder or 3.5-liter V6 gas engines paired with 6-speed automatic transmissions, or a 2.5-liter Atkinson Cycle engine with Hybrid Synergy drive matched to an E-CVT. Making the Grade In 2011, Toyota launched the sporty Camry SE grade, resulting in attracting buyers that were 12 years younger than the rest of the segment average. The SE model now accounts for 45 percent of the Camry sales mix, proving that drivers want sportier models. Building on this success, the Camry XSE grade gives customers more of what they want with enthusiastic driving dynamics and luxurious amenities. The Camry SE and XSE are distinguished by a unique mesh grille and fascia treatment. The Camry XSE adds to its edgier look with model-specific 18-inch wheels, unique shock absorbers, firmer bushings, higher rate coil springs, and unique EPS tuning, making it the sportiest Camry yet. Also for 2015, a Camry Hybrid SE has been added to the lineup with unique dynamic suspension tuning that delivers an eco-fun driving experience. Up front, a stabilizer bar, absorber valve structure, and control arm bushing components were enhanced to offer improved ride quality while sharpening steering feel. The Hybrid SE's vehicle stability control system has been retuned for smoother intervention and a more natural driving feel. Advanced Safety Features All Toyota vehicles come standard with the STAR Safety System. In addition, Camry will offer safety-focused driver aids including Lane Departure Alert, Adaptive Cruise Control, Pre-Collision System with Auto High Beams, and Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Cross Traffic Alert. Everybody's All-American Every Camry sold in North America is the product of over 7,000 skilled American team members. From design and engineering in Michigan, to assembly in Kentucky, a unique American touch goes into each Camry that rolls off of the line. The new 2015 Camry will arrive in dealerships this fall.
  3. Toyota isn't resting on its laurels with the Camry. Even though the company redesigned the model back in 2012, new competitors are threatening the Camry's midsize sedan sales crown. So the company went back to the drawing board and came up with the 2015 Camry, shown today at the New York Auto Show. Toyota says the 2015 model has been rebuilt from the ground-up with more than 2,000 new parts in a effort to make the new model a bit more exciting, something Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda has mandated. The exterior has grown in length by 1.8 inches and features a 0.4 inch wider track. Up front is styling that is similar to the new Corolla with a wider and more prominent grille and wraparound headlights. In the back is a Avalon-like trunk lid and new taillights. Moving inside, Toyota has added more premium and soft-touch materials throughout the cabin. There is a redesigned center stack with the latest version of Toyota's Entune infotainment system and a new 4.2 inch color screen in the instrument cluster. Powertrains carry over from the current model, which means a 2.5L four-cylinder engine will be the base, followed by the 3.5L V6. Hybrid models stick with 2.5L Atkinson-cycle four-cylinder paired with an electric motor and CVT. What has changed is Toyota trying to up the sporty-ness with the Camry by adding more spot welds to the chassis, revised suspension, retuned electric power steering, and a new two-stage brake booster. The Camry also gains two more trim levels for more sport. First is the XSE which adds unique 18-inch wheels, shock absorbers, firmer bushings, higher rate coil springs, and unique steering tuning. Then there is the Hybrid SE which gets its own tuning to the suspension and chassis reinforcements. The 2015 Camry arrives at dealers this fall. Source: Toyota Press Release is on Page 2 More Than Skin Deep: America's Best-Selling Car Gets Even Better With a Sweeping Redesign for 2015 Toyota Camry rebuilt from the ground up with almost 2,000 new parts New, sporty XSE and Hybrid SE grades amp up driving dynamics Most upscale interior in segment with soft-touch materials throughout Produced by over 7,000 American team members April 16, 2014 NEW YORK (April 16, 2014) - So what do you do when you have the best-selling car in the industry for 12 straight years? You find ways to make it even better. That's exactly what Toyota did with the introduction of the new 2015 Camry. After selling almost a million of the industry's benchmark sedan since the current generation launched in 2011, Toyota stripped it down to its chassis and rebuilt it from the ground up, raising the bar yet again in the ultra-competitive mid-size sedan segment. "Customers today love the durability, quality and value that the Camry represents, but they are looking for a little more style, comfort and performance, and this 2015 Camry has all of the above," said Bob Carter, senior vice president of automotive operations of Toyota Motor Sales, USA, Inc. "This is the new Camry, and it's coming from the new Toyota." Toyota designers and engineers re-imagined nearly every exterior surface of the car. Only the roof remains unchanged. The new, upscale interior features premium, soft-touch materials throughout the spacious cabin. Advanced instrumentation with intuitive controls helps keep the driver's eyes safely on the road ahead. Underneath the striking new exterior, the chassis and body structure are bolstered with additional spot welds, enhancing rigidity for better ride quality. A retuned suspension takes the Camry's handling to a whole new level of responsiveness. Two new grades, the sporty and luxurious XSE and the eco-fun Hybrid SE, join the well-equipped entry LE and the premium XLE grade, giving customers more choice than ever before. An Expressive and Athletic Exterior The 2015 Camry's exterior is more expressive and athletic with prominent character lines. The new car is slightly longer (1.8 inches or 45 mm) and features a widened track (0.4 inches or 10 mm) that communicates a dynamic stance and presence. A pronounced body line starts from the Camry's muscular front fender and spans across the doors and rear quarter panel, conveying a sense of motion. The completely revised, more aggressive front bumper cover features a wider more prominent trapezoidal grille shape, expressing a lower center of gravity. The 2015 Camry will be available in 10 colors, including the new Celestial Silver Metallic and Ruby Flare Pearl. New Lighting Shines with Form and Function The new sleek headlamps complement the aggressive front fascia, while the front turn signal indicators and LED DRL's are integrated for an elegant appearance. The 2015 Camry will offer exterior lighting with available LED low and high-beams and auto static leveling. The Camry's rear tail lamps sweep into the tapered sheet metal at the rear of the car. A decorative garnish connects the tail lamps across the trunk lid and emphasizes its new sporty stance. A Modern, Refined Interior The interior of the new Camry is more refined than ever with premium materials, roomier feel and improved amenities. The center stack features a high-tech, upscale look that smoothly integrates with the console. The center console tray has been redesigned to increase capacity while offering a convenient power source in the storage box. The new enclosed bin in front of the shifter now offers 12v, USB and a segment-first, available wireless charging system for select smart phones. The 2015 Camry's cockpit offers intuitive top-flight in-car electronics and displays that help reduce driver stress and distraction. The instrument panel features a new 4.2-inch TFT screen nestled between the three-dimensional Optitron gauges on the SE, XLE and XSE models. The screen's color animation displays a wide range of vehicle functions and coordinates with the multimedia system to display audio, navigation, warnings and communications. Detailed stitching and trim elements finished in satin chrome convey a sophisticated appearance. Varying by model, seat cover textures range from premium cloth all of the way to genuine leather and Ultrasuede with durable, high contrast French-stitching. The Quietest Camry Ever Toyota engineers focused on reducing unwanted wind and road noise to offer an even quieter cabin. Window and door seals were improved to keep noise outside. The carpet features 30 percent more insulating material. Even the Camry's side mirrors were redesigned to better control air flow reducing turbulence and noise. Dialing Up Driving Dynamics Additional spot welds were added to the door opening flanges to increase rigidity and enable spirited handling. A combination of Macpherson struts up front, a multi-link arrangement at the rear and a stiffer body structure allows for unique suspension tuning across trim levels. The electric power steering on all Camry models is tuned for better on-center feel, better straight line stability and more direct-feeling steering inputs. In addition to improvements in steering feel, the new Camry's hydraulic system has been revised with a two-stage brake booster to improve brake feel. The Camry will continue to be available with 2.5-liter four-cylinder or 3.5-liter V6 gas engines paired with 6-speed automatic transmissions, or a 2.5-liter Atkinson Cycle engine with Hybrid Synergy drive matched to an E-CVT. Making the Grade In 2011, Toyota launched the sporty Camry SE grade, resulting in attracting buyers that were 12 years younger than the rest of the segment average. The SE model now accounts for 45 percent of the Camry sales mix, proving that drivers want sportier models. Building on this success, the Camry XSE grade gives customers more of what they want with enthusiastic driving dynamics and luxurious amenities. The Camry SE and XSE are distinguished by a unique mesh grille and fascia treatment. The Camry XSE adds to its edgier look with model-specific 18-inch wheels, unique shock absorbers, firmer bushings, higher rate coil springs, and unique EPS tuning, making it the sportiest Camry yet. Also for 2015, a Camry Hybrid SE has been added to the lineup with unique dynamic suspension tuning that delivers an eco-fun driving experience. Up front, a stabilizer bar, absorber valve structure, and control arm bushing components were enhanced to offer improved ride quality while sharpening steering feel. The Hybrid SE's vehicle stability control system has been retuned for smoother intervention and a more natural driving feel. Advanced Safety Features All Toyota vehicles come standard with the STAR Safety System. In addition, Camry will offer safety-focused driver aids including Lane Departure Alert, Adaptive Cruise Control, Pre-Collision System with Auto High Beams, and Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Cross Traffic Alert. Everybody's All-American Every Camry sold in North America is the product of over 7,000 skilled American team members. From design and engineering in Michigan, to assembly in Kentucky, a unique American touch goes into each Camry that rolls off of the line. The new 2015 Camry will arrive in dealerships this fall. View full article
  4. At the New York Auto Show today, Hyundai introduced the 7th generation of their mid-size Sonata sedan. After the revolutionary change the previous version brought, Hyundai has adopted a more evolutionary design. Billed as Fluidic Sculpture 2.0, the 2015 Sonata has been refined further and the look brought more in line with the upper end of the Hyundai family, the Genesis luxury sedan. Hyundai addresses concerns of road noise and vibration with increased usage of sound deadening materials in the firewall and floorpan. Under the car is a fibrous glass board that improves aerodynamics and further reduces noise. Improvements in interior packaging bump the passenger volume up to 106.1 cu. ft. which is 3 cu. ft. larger than the next largest mid-size competitor, the Honda Accord. This increase in room earns the Sonata an EPA size rating of Large-Car. The suspension in all Sonatas has been re-tuned and reinforced for better ride and handling while the 2.0 Turbo models receive further tuning for a sportier feel. Powertrains are largely carryover with slight revisions in tuning. Peak horsepower for the standard 2.4 liter 4-cylinder has been reduced to 185 to improve responsiveness at lower RPM while the 2.0 Turbo, now sporting 245 horsepower and 260 ft-lb of torque, has a smaller turbine and compressor to reduce turbo lag. Hyundai has been making strong inroads lately against the long-time stalwarts of Camry and Accord. The 6th generation Sonata was released in 2011 and Hyundai is keeping the pressure up by bringing out a revised model in rapid succession. Press Release After The Jump Source: Hyundai Media NEW YORK, April 16, 2014 – Hyundai today introduced its all-new seventh-generation 2015 Sonata at the New York International Auto Show. Following the incredible success of the outgoing Sonata, the all-new generation offers a more refined look through a new Fluidic Sculpture 2.0 design language, stiffer body structure, better ride quality, reduced noise, vibration and harshness and advanced safety and convenience features. Sonata truly democratizes the premium design and convenient technology of the Genesis sedan for the mid-size class. The new 2015 Hyundai Sonata will be built at the Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama plant in Montgomery, Ala. and go on sale early this summer. EXTERIOR DESIGN The 2011 Sonata raised the bar for design in the mid-size sedan segment when it was introduced in 2009. Consumers noticed the groundbreaking design and so did the competition. Sonata’s design matures for the 2015 model year with energetic and crisp lines complimented by smooth and subtle surfaces. Fluidic Sculpture 2.0 is a confident evolution of the original fluidic sculpture design language that perfectly expresses Sonata’s premium look and excellent value. A larger, more refined grille with a wide air intake defines the face of the 2015 Sonata. Simple, harmonious lines adorn the exterior while hinting at the improved dynamic performance and human-machine connection Sonata provides. Taut, horizontal rocker panels reflect the chassis’ increased stability and surefootedness while the signature Sonata beltline is now stretched tight to accentuate the sedan’s strength. The coupe-like roofline remains, but it is balanced by a larger window graphic that emphasizes the roomier interior. Horizontal lines in the rear underscore Sonata’s width and give the car a planted look. This purposeful shape achieves a remarkable drag coefficient of just 0.27, lower than any non-hybrid in the mid-size sedan class. Shoppers looking for a traditional design will appreciate the 2015 Sonata SE’s exterior styling that includes standard LED daytime running lights, 16-inch alloy wheels, a rear lip spoiler and chrome surround for the day light opening. Sonata Limited adds rocker panel extensions and dual exhaust for a premium look. Sonata Sport features a more aggressive front grille and bumper, side rocker extensions and side chrome molding. Sport models powered by the 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine feature dual exhaust while Sport 2.0T models feature a unique rear bumper fascia, quad exhaust tips and 18-inch alloy wheels. The Sport model is expected to be the most popular Sonata. With the 2015 Hyundai Sonata Sport 2.0T, performance is something you taste and the Fluidic Sculpture 2.0 design language certainly whets the appetite. “We crafted the shape of the 2015 Sonata in the same way an award-winning chef refines his recipe over the years,” said Chris Chapman, chief designer, Hyundai Design North America. “With the 2011 Sonata, Hyundai took the mid-size sedan from a meal to a gourmet dinner. The evolution to Fluidic Sculpture 2.0’s more taut, modern lines reflect the improvements in refinement and driving dynamics for 2015.” INTERIOR DESIGN Confident, energetic lines define the 2015 Sonata’s exterior and are complimented inside the cabin by a premium interior with a special emphasis on ergonomics. Intuitive buttons and controls are placed on the center stack, which is angled toward the driver to make the controls easier to reach. Hyundai’s core interior design principles are safety, intuitiveness and simplicity and Sonata delivers in spades. Controls are grouped logically and placed in the most convenient position for the driver. To create a unified experience inside the cabin, designers met with various suppliers to make sure all buttons and switchgear have a consistent feel. The height of the display screen for the audio display or 8-inch navigation system and instrument cluster are optimized for visibility and reside on the same plane to enhance readability during a quick glance. These ergonomic enhancements help the driver remain focused on the road ahead and provide confidence behind the wheel. All components inside the cabin were examined and opportunities for improvement were taken very seriously. Even the steering wheel went through extensive testing to determine the ideal diameter, shape and tactile feel to maximize driver confidence. Improvements in the design of the steering wheel and changes to the layout of the instrument cluster necessitated a new steering column design. Designers and engineers sweated every detail in their quest to make the interior as safe, intuitive and simple as possible while delivering convenient features with pleasing aesthetics. Sonata Sport 2.0T receives a unique interior that enhances its more dynamic personality. A D-cut steering wheel and paddle shifters help provide the confidence enthusiastic drivers expect while the sport instrument cluster with six o’clock needle position hints at the improved performance from the more responsive 2.0-liter turbocharged engine. Reducing undesired noise inside the cabin was a top priority for the 2015 Sonata. Engineers reduced the size of the apertures in the bulkhead and increased use of sound deadening materials in the dashboard to prevent unwanted noise from entering the cabin. Engine notes were tuned to be pleasing to the ear without being intrusive. More sound absorption materials are used under the floorpan and an underbody tray made of fibrous glass expansion board improves aerodynamics while reducing unwanted road noise. The 2015 Sonata’s efficient packaging delivers outstanding passenger and interior volume. With 106.1 cu. ft. of passenger volume and a total interior volume of 122.4 cu. ft., 2015 Sonata is classified as a large car by the EPA. ADVANCED HIGH-STRENGTH STEEL PLATFORM A rigid platform is essential for a great car. Everything from ride quality to crash test performance is enhanced with a stiffer platform. The 2015 Sonata uses advanced high-strength steel for more than 50 percent of total platform composition, which results in 41 percent stiffer torsional rigidity and 35 percent greater bending strength. Advanced high strength steel is twice as rigid as traditional steel while weighing 10 percent less. More hot-stamped components are used, especially in the B-pillar area. A revised multilink rear suspension design enhances responsiveness, handling and stability while reducing impact harshness. Dual lower suspension arms replace the old single-arm design and distribute lateral forces more effectively to improve ride quality without sacrificing handling. The new rear suspension geometry helps keep Sonata more stable under hard braking and helps provide shorter stopping distances. Reinforced side and cross members strengthen sub-frame mounting points and improve suspension responsiveness. Revised front sub-frame bushings are 17 percent stiffer than before and contribute to better steering feel and improved responsiveness. 2015 Sonata Sport 2.0T utilizes a new rack-mounted dual-pinion electric power steering system that offers more natural steering feel. Sport 2.0T models receive a unique sport-tuned suspension and larger 12.6-inch front brakes. These upgrades deliver increased driver confidence and a premium driving experience. Improvements in ride and handling were validated at Hyundai’s world-class facilities in Namyang, the Mojave proving grounds in California and the new test center located at the famed Nurburgring. Validating the 2015 Sonata’s performance at world-class test tracks resulted in a world-class mid-size sedan that inspires confidence in a wide variety of driving conditions. POWERTRAIN Hyundai continues its all four-cylinder engine lineup for the 2015 Sonata. A revised 2.4-liter Theta II GDI four-cylinder engine powers SE, Limited and Sport models. The 2.4-liter four-cylinder produces 185 horsepower and 178 lb. ft. of torque. Hyundai’s powertrain engineers slightly reduced peak power for the 2015 Sonata to shift the powerband downward for better responsiveness in lower-RPM situations where customers spend the majority of their time. The new Electronic Intake Continuously Variable Valve Timing (E-CVVT) improves performance in low temperatures and reduces emissions. A revised 2.0-liter Theta II turbocharged GDI, also featuring E-CVVT, powers Sport 2.0T models. The 2.0-liter turbocharged engine is also optimized for lower-RPM drivability and it produces 245 horsepower and 260 lb. ft. of torque. The turbocharger features a smaller turbine and compressor wheel, which provide better responsiveness and more torque in the low and mid RPM range. Both Theta engines are paired with a six-speed SHIFTRONIC® automatic transmission. SAFETY FEATURES Sonata comes standard with seven airbags, including a new driver’s knee airbag designed to help prevent the driver from sliding down the seat in a collision, which allows the other restraint systems to be more effective. Electronic Stability Control, Vehicle Stability Management, Traction Control, ABS and a Tire Pressure Monitoring System with individual tire pressure display are also standard. Projector headlamps are standard while HID headlamps are available. Hyundai engineers implemented many active safety technologies for the 2015 Sonata to assist drivers and help prevent accidents. No longer reserved for luxury cars, advanced safety technologies such as Forward Collision Warning, Blind Spot Detection, Rear Cross Traffic Alert and a Lane Departure Warning System are all available in this midsize sedan. Sonata’s advanced Blind Spot Detection system is designed to alert drivers of an approaching vehicle in the next lane if the turn signal is activated. This Lane Change Assist technology is a segment-exclusive active safety feature. Drivers are first alerted of a vehicle in the blind spot by warning lights in the side mirrors. When the turn signal is activated, the Lane Change Assist system determines the closing speed of any vehicle in the adjacent lane to determine if the lane change is safe. If the system determines the vehicle in the other lane is closing too quickly, it sounds an audible alarm to warn the driver that the lane change is unsafe. The Lane Departure Warning System uses a forward-facing camera to recognize lane markers. If the system detects the vehicle is headed outside the lane markers, a warning light on the dashboard illuminates and an audible sound alerts the driver. Rear Cross-traffic Alert (RCTA) is another feature derived from the 2015 Sonata’s advanced Blind Spot Detection system. RCTA scans the areas to each side of the 2015 Sonata when drivers are backing out of parking spaces. If the system detects another vehicle is approaching from the side, the Sonata driver is given an audible alert. This system is another tool that helps Sonata drivers utilize the active safety technology. CONVENIENT TECHNOLOGY The 2015 Sonata embodies Hyundai’s Modern Premium brand direction by providing convenient technology formerly reserved for luxury sedans in the mid-size segment without the premium price tag. Switching the high beams on and off manually doesn’t seem like a hassle, but Sonata’s High Beam Assist allows the driver to keep their eyes on the road and let the headlamps deliver maximum visibility without accidentally blinding oncoming traffic. Bright LED daytime running lights give the 2015 Sonata’s face a premium look. Smart Cruise Control (SCC) with full stop capability helps make driving on the freeway less stressful. This system allows full function down to zero mph to operate seamlessly using the front-grille-mounted radar sensor. SCC enables the 2015 Sonata to help maintain safer, consistent spacing with the vehicle ahead in varied traffic conditions. Smart trunk gives drivers a convenient hands-free way to open the trunk while keeping both feet firmly planted on the ground. The owner simply needs to approach the Sonata’s trunk with the key fob in a purse or pocket and wait three seconds. The trunk will automatically open, making it easy to place groceries or luggage inside when hands are full. Rear seat passengers are treated to segment-exclusive sunshades, an option typically found on luxury cars. Feedback from current Sonata owners resulted in a height-adjustable passenger seat and now both front seats can be heated and ventilated. Even rear-seat passengers enjoy the luxury of heated seats on a cold day. A heated steering wheel will be a favorite feature for owners of the 2015 Sonata Limited equipped with the Tech package. The desire to deliver class-above value allows these convenient technologies to trickle down from the all-new Genesis to the all-new Sonata making it the most sophisticated mid-size sedan available. MULTIMEDIA All 2015 Sonatas come standard with iPod®/USB and auxiliary input jacks, SiriusXM® satellite radio and Bluetooth® phone connectivity with phonebook transfer and voice-recognition. Available upgrades include an 8.0-inch navigation system with downloadable apps, HD radio, Dimension or 400-watt Infinity premium audio systems with next-generation Blue Link® telematics. Hyundai’s 8.0-inch navigation system offers an enhanced display with improved touch sensitivity, a map and music split screen display and the ability to record SiriusXM presets 1-6. Switching to a preset station in the middle of your favorite song won’t be an annoyance any longer. Rewind up to 22 minutes to listen to the full song or catch up on a sports broadcast. SiriusXM Travel Link®provides access to traffic information, sports scores, weather, stock prices, fuel prices and local movie times. All 2015 Sonatas equipped with navigation will also support Pandora® and SoundHound applications as well as “Eyes Free” Siri integration, which allows drivers to perform a variety of functions without taking their eyes off the road. Apple CarPlay will take iPhone integration to the next level on the 2015 Sonata later this year.
  5. At the New York Auto Show today, Hyundai introduced the 7th generation of their mid-size Sonata sedan. After the revolutionary change the previous version brought, Hyundai has adopted a more evolutionary design. Billed as Fluidic Sculpture 2.0, the 2015 Sonata has been refined further and the look brought more in line with the upper end of the Hyundai family, the Genesis luxury sedan. Hyundai addresses concerns of road noise and vibration with increased usage of sound deadening materials in the firewall and floorpan. Under the car is a fibrous glass board that improves aerodynamics and further reduces noise. Improvements in interior packaging bump the passenger volume up to 106.1 cu. ft. which is 3 cu. ft. larger than the next largest mid-size competitor, the Honda Accord. This increase in room earns the Sonata an EPA size rating of Large-Car. The suspension in all Sonatas has been re-tuned and reinforced for better ride and handling while the 2.0 Turbo models receive further tuning for a sportier feel. Powertrains are largely carryover with slight revisions in tuning. Peak horsepower for the standard 2.4 liter 4-cylinder has been reduced to 185 to improve responsiveness at lower RPM while the 2.0 Turbo, now sporting 245 horsepower and 260 ft-lb of torque, has a smaller turbine and compressor to reduce turbo lag. Hyundai has been making strong inroads lately against the long-time stalwarts of Camry and Accord. The 6th generation Sonata was released in 2011 and Hyundai is keeping the pressure up by bringing out a revised model in rapid succession. Press Release After The Jump Source: Hyundai Media NEW YORK, April 16, 2014 – Hyundai today introduced its all-new seventh-generation 2015 Sonata at the New York International Auto Show. Following the incredible success of the outgoing Sonata, the all-new generation offers a more refined look through a new Fluidic Sculpture 2.0 design language, stiffer body structure, better ride quality, reduced noise, vibration and harshness and advanced safety and convenience features. Sonata truly democratizes the premium design and convenient technology of the Genesis sedan for the mid-size class. The new 2015 Hyundai Sonata will be built at the Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama plant in Montgomery, Ala. and go on sale early this summer. EXTERIOR DESIGN The 2011 Sonata raised the bar for design in the mid-size sedan segment when it was introduced in 2009. Consumers noticed the groundbreaking design and so did the competition. Sonata’s design matures for the 2015 model year with energetic and crisp lines complimented by smooth and subtle surfaces. Fluidic Sculpture 2.0 is a confident evolution of the original fluidic sculpture design language that perfectly expresses Sonata’s premium look and excellent value. A larger, more refined grille with a wide air intake defines the face of the 2015 Sonata. Simple, harmonious lines adorn the exterior while hinting at the improved dynamic performance and human-machine connection Sonata provides. Taut, horizontal rocker panels reflect the chassis’ increased stability and surefootedness while the signature Sonata beltline is now stretched tight to accentuate the sedan’s strength. The coupe-like roofline remains, but it is balanced by a larger window graphic that emphasizes the roomier interior. Horizontal lines in the rear underscore Sonata’s width and give the car a planted look. This purposeful shape achieves a remarkable drag coefficient of just 0.27, lower than any non-hybrid in the mid-size sedan class. Shoppers looking for a traditional design will appreciate the 2015 Sonata SE’s exterior styling that includes standard LED daytime running lights, 16-inch alloy wheels, a rear lip spoiler and chrome surround for the day light opening. Sonata Limited adds rocker panel extensions and dual exhaust for a premium look. Sonata Sport features a more aggressive front grille and bumper, side rocker extensions and side chrome molding. Sport models powered by the 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine feature dual exhaust while Sport 2.0T models feature a unique rear bumper fascia, quad exhaust tips and 18-inch alloy wheels. The Sport model is expected to be the most popular Sonata. With the 2015 Hyundai Sonata Sport 2.0T, performance is something you taste and the Fluidic Sculpture 2.0 design language certainly whets the appetite. “We crafted the shape of the 2015 Sonata in the same way an award-winning chef refines his recipe over the years,” said Chris Chapman, chief designer, Hyundai Design North America. “With the 2011 Sonata, Hyundai took the mid-size sedan from a meal to a gourmet dinner. The evolution to Fluidic Sculpture 2.0’s more taut, modern lines reflect the improvements in refinement and driving dynamics for 2015.” INTERIOR DESIGN Confident, energetic lines define the 2015 Sonata’s exterior and are complimented inside the cabin by a premium interior with a special emphasis on ergonomics. Intuitive buttons and controls are placed on the center stack, which is angled toward the driver to make the controls easier to reach. Hyundai’s core interior design principles are safety, intuitiveness and simplicity and Sonata delivers in spades. Controls are grouped logically and placed in the most convenient position for the driver. To create a unified experience inside the cabin, designers met with various suppliers to make sure all buttons and switchgear have a consistent feel. The height of the display screen for the audio display or 8-inch navigation system and instrument cluster are optimized for visibility and reside on the same plane to enhance readability during a quick glance. These ergonomic enhancements help the driver remain focused on the road ahead and provide confidence behind the wheel. All components inside the cabin were examined and opportunities for improvement were taken very seriously. Even the steering wheel went through extensive testing to determine the ideal diameter, shape and tactile feel to maximize driver confidence. Improvements in the design of the steering wheel and changes to the layout of the instrument cluster necessitated a new steering column design. Designers and engineers sweated every detail in their quest to make the interior as safe, intuitive and simple as possible while delivering convenient features with pleasing aesthetics. Sonata Sport 2.0T receives a unique interior that enhances its more dynamic personality. A D-cut steering wheel and paddle shifters help provide the confidence enthusiastic drivers expect while the sport instrument cluster with six o’clock needle position hints at the improved performance from the more responsive 2.0-liter turbocharged engine. Reducing undesired noise inside the cabin was a top priority for the 2015 Sonata. Engineers reduced the size of the apertures in the bulkhead and increased use of sound deadening materials in the dashboard to prevent unwanted noise from entering the cabin. Engine notes were tuned to be pleasing to the ear without being intrusive. More sound absorption materials are used under the floorpan and an underbody tray made of fibrous glass expansion board improves aerodynamics while reducing unwanted road noise. The 2015 Sonata’s efficient packaging delivers outstanding passenger and interior volume. With 106.1 cu. ft. of passenger volume and a total interior volume of 122.4 cu. ft., 2015 Sonata is classified as a large car by the EPA. ADVANCED HIGH-STRENGTH STEEL PLATFORM A rigid platform is essential for a great car. Everything from ride quality to crash test performance is enhanced with a stiffer platform. The 2015 Sonata uses advanced high-strength steel for more than 50 percent of total platform composition, which results in 41 percent stiffer torsional rigidity and 35 percent greater bending strength. Advanced high strength steel is twice as rigid as traditional steel while weighing 10 percent less. More hot-stamped components are used, especially in the B-pillar area. A revised multilink rear suspension design enhances responsiveness, handling and stability while reducing impact harshness. Dual lower suspension arms replace the old single-arm design and distribute lateral forces more effectively to improve ride quality without sacrificing handling. The new rear suspension geometry helps keep Sonata more stable under hard braking and helps provide shorter stopping distances. Reinforced side and cross members strengthen sub-frame mounting points and improve suspension responsiveness. Revised front sub-frame bushings are 17 percent stiffer than before and contribute to better steering feel and improved responsiveness. 2015 Sonata Sport 2.0T utilizes a new rack-mounted dual-pinion electric power steering system that offers more natural steering feel. Sport 2.0T models receive a unique sport-tuned suspension and larger 12.6-inch front brakes. These upgrades deliver increased driver confidence and a premium driving experience. Improvements in ride and handling were validated at Hyundai’s world-class facilities in Namyang, the Mojave proving grounds in California and the new test center located at the famed Nurburgring. Validating the 2015 Sonata’s performance at world-class test tracks resulted in a world-class mid-size sedan that inspires confidence in a wide variety of driving conditions. POWERTRAIN Hyundai continues its all four-cylinder engine lineup for the 2015 Sonata. A revised 2.4-liter Theta II GDI four-cylinder engine powers SE, Limited and Sport models. The 2.4-liter four-cylinder produces 185 horsepower and 178 lb. ft. of torque. Hyundai’s powertrain engineers slightly reduced peak power for the 2015 Sonata to shift the powerband downward for better responsiveness in lower-RPM situations where customers spend the majority of their time. The new Electronic Intake Continuously Variable Valve Timing (E-CVVT) improves performance in low temperatures and reduces emissions. A revised 2.0-liter Theta II turbocharged GDI, also featuring E-CVVT, powers Sport 2.0T models. The 2.0-liter turbocharged engine is also optimized for lower-RPM drivability and it produces 245 horsepower and 260 lb. ft. of torque. The turbocharger features a smaller turbine and compressor wheel, which provide better responsiveness and more torque in the low and mid RPM range. Both Theta engines are paired with a six-speed SHIFTRONIC® automatic transmission. SAFETY FEATURES Sonata comes standard with seven airbags, including a new driver’s knee airbag designed to help prevent the driver from sliding down the seat in a collision, which allows the other restraint systems to be more effective. Electronic Stability Control, Vehicle Stability Management, Traction Control, ABS and a Tire Pressure Monitoring System with individual tire pressure display are also standard. Projector headlamps are standard while HID headlamps are available. Hyundai engineers implemented many active safety technologies for the 2015 Sonata to assist drivers and help prevent accidents. No longer reserved for luxury cars, advanced safety technologies such as Forward Collision Warning, Blind Spot Detection, Rear Cross Traffic Alert and a Lane Departure Warning System are all available in this midsize sedan. Sonata’s advanced Blind Spot Detection system is designed to alert drivers of an approaching vehicle in the next lane if the turn signal is activated. This Lane Change Assist technology is a segment-exclusive active safety feature. Drivers are first alerted of a vehicle in the blind spot by warning lights in the side mirrors. When the turn signal is activated, the Lane Change Assist system determines the closing speed of any vehicle in the adjacent lane to determine if the lane change is safe. If the system determines the vehicle in the other lane is closing too quickly, it sounds an audible alarm to warn the driver that the lane change is unsafe. The Lane Departure Warning System uses a forward-facing camera to recognize lane markers. If the system detects the vehicle is headed outside the lane markers, a warning light on the dashboard illuminates and an audible sound alerts the driver. Rear Cross-traffic Alert (RCTA) is another feature derived from the 2015 Sonata’s advanced Blind Spot Detection system. RCTA scans the areas to each side of the 2015 Sonata when drivers are backing out of parking spaces. If the system detects another vehicle is approaching from the side, the Sonata driver is given an audible alert. This system is another tool that helps Sonata drivers utilize the active safety technology. CONVENIENT TECHNOLOGY The 2015 Sonata embodies Hyundai’s Modern Premium brand direction by providing convenient technology formerly reserved for luxury sedans in the mid-size segment without the premium price tag. Switching the high beams on and off manually doesn’t seem like a hassle, but Sonata’s High Beam Assist allows the driver to keep their eyes on the road and let the headlamps deliver maximum visibility without accidentally blinding oncoming traffic. Bright LED daytime running lights give the 2015 Sonata’s face a premium look. Smart Cruise Control (SCC) with full stop capability helps make driving on the freeway less stressful. This system allows full function down to zero mph to operate seamlessly using the front-grille-mounted radar sensor. SCC enables the 2015 Sonata to help maintain safer, consistent spacing with the vehicle ahead in varied traffic conditions. Smart trunk gives drivers a convenient hands-free way to open the trunk while keeping both feet firmly planted on the ground. The owner simply needs to approach the Sonata’s trunk with the key fob in a purse or pocket and wait three seconds. The trunk will automatically open, making it easy to place groceries or luggage inside when hands are full. Rear seat passengers are treated to segment-exclusive sunshades, an option typically found on luxury cars. Feedback from current Sonata owners resulted in a height-adjustable passenger seat and now both front seats can be heated and ventilated. Even rear-seat passengers enjoy the luxury of heated seats on a cold day. A heated steering wheel will be a favorite feature for owners of the 2015 Sonata Limited equipped with the Tech package. The desire to deliver class-above value allows these convenient technologies to trickle down from the all-new Genesis to the all-new Sonata making it the most sophisticated mid-size sedan available. MULTIMEDIA All 2015 Sonatas come standard with iPod®/USB and auxiliary input jacks, SiriusXM® satellite radio and Bluetooth® phone connectivity with phonebook transfer and voice-recognition. Available upgrades include an 8.0-inch navigation system with downloadable apps, HD radio, Dimension or 400-watt Infinity premium audio systems with next-generation Blue Link® telematics. Hyundai’s 8.0-inch navigation system offers an enhanced display with improved touch sensitivity, a map and music split screen display and the ability to record SiriusXM presets 1-6. Switching to a preset station in the middle of your favorite song won’t be an annoyance any longer. Rewind up to 22 minutes to listen to the full song or catch up on a sports broadcast. SiriusXM Travel Link®provides access to traffic information, sports scores, weather, stock prices, fuel prices and local movie times. All 2015 Sonatas equipped with navigation will also support Pandora® and SoundHound applications as well as “Eyes Free” Siri integration, which allows drivers to perform a variety of functions without taking their eyes off the road. Apple CarPlay will take iPhone integration to the next level on the 2015 Sonata later this year. View full article
  6. Chevrolet has revealed their second New York Auto Show showing last night and it happens to be the 2015 Cruze. Now for those who were expecting the automaker to launch the next-generation model will be disappointed as the 2015 model is a refresh. The new model isn't expected for a little longer. Changes for the 2015 model begin with a larger front grille and reshaped taillights. LT and LTZ models get LED running lights mounted below the headlights. Inside is where the big changes are. The Cruze's infotainment system now can read text messages to the driver, has Apple's Siri Eyes Free voice controls if you have an iPhone, and a 4G LTE connection that allows the vehicle to act as a wi-fi hotspot. No mechanical changes have been announced. Pricing and other details will be announced at a later time. Update: I've added a couple shots from the NYIAS floor. Source: Chevrolet Press Release is on Page 2 Styling, OnStar 4G LTE, Siri Updates for 2015 Chevy Cruze Chevy's best-selling car is smarter looking, offers greater connectivity NEW YORK Chevrolet announced today the 2015 Cruze will debut at the New York International Auto Show with revised exterior styling, enhanced interior convenience and greater connectivity including new Text Message Alerts, Apple Siri integration and OnStar 4G LTE with available Wi-Fi hotspot. The new exterior styling cues are inspired by the all-new Impala and restyled 2014 Malibu, while more intuitive controls update the interior. New voice-controlled features enhance safety when responding to text messages in the vehicle. "We've simply made a great, versatile car even better," said Steve Majoros, Chevrolet director of passenger car and crossover marketing. "Chevrolet continues to design, build and sell the most compelling small cars in its history and the 2015 Cruze offers more of the features, connectivity and efficiency that are important to today's customers." The Cruze's facelift for 2015 refreshes the appearance for LS, LT, RS and LTZ models. A prominent dual-port front fascia takes styling cues from Impala and Malibu, contributing a more cohesive look across Chevrolet's sedan range including LED daytime running lamps on LT and LTZ trims. They complement the Cruze's swept-back headlamps, for a sportier presence. Several new exterior and interior colors will also be offered for 2015. Updates on the interior enhance convenience: Revised cupholders make it easier to insert and remove cups Trunk release relocated to the center console Door lock switches relocated from the center console to the front doors. In addition to LS, LT, RS and LTZ models, the 2015 Cruze lineup includes Cruze Eco (EPA-rated 42 mpg highway) and Cruze Diesel (EPA 46 mpg highway), the most efficient non-hybrid passenger car in America. That's about 10 percent greater efficiency than the Volkswagen Jetta TDI. The Cruze also delivers more horsepower (151 hp) and torque (264 lb-ft), than the Jetta TDI (140 hp / 236 lb-ft). Cruze Diesel's driving range is up to 717 miles per tank. Cruze offers more standard safety features than any other car in its class, including 2014 models of the Ford Focus and Toyota Corolla. Cruze has 10 standard air bags including side-impact and knee air bags for front passengers and offers side blind zone alert, rear cross traffic alert, rear park assist and a rearview camera. "Cruze remains a strong entry in the compact segment, with features that continue to bring new customers to Chevrolet," said Majoros. "Along with Spark, Spark EV, Sonic and Volt, Chevy's lineup of efficient, technologically advanced small cars is one of the industry's most compelling." A mobile hub with greater connectivityThe enhanced connectivity and convenience features for the 2015 Cruze include a new Text Message Alerts feature for smartphone users with Bluetooth profile (M.A.P.), which reads incoming texts through the vehicle's speakers, and Siri Eyes Free for iPhone iOS 6 and iOS 7 users to enhance connectivity and convenience. Each enables voice-controlled connectivity, to help keep phones in pockets and hands on the wheel. Additional standard and available features include: Seven-inch-diagonal color touch screen and additional USB ports Chevrolet connected by OnStar 4G LTE with built-in Wi-Fi hotspot Next-generation OnStar and MyLink enhancements with natural language voice recognition Available Chevrolet AppShop (later availability) Available navigation. OnStar 4G LTE with available Wi-Fi hotspot provides a mobile hub for drivers and passengers with easy access to apps and services that require a high-speed data connection. 4G LTE is the most current and fastest mobile data network 10 times faster than 3G. And with OnStar, it offers stronger, broader coverage than smartphones on the same network and it's easy to use: If the vehicle is on, the connection is on, allowing passengers to connect personal devices such as smartphones, laptops and tablets, to high-speed wireless Internet. Each vehicle can accommodate seven devices at one time. The Chevrolet AppShop allows owners to view all available apps and download them directly to the vehicle, then organize, update or delete them as needed. Available apps connect drivers to vehicle data, music, news, weather, travel information and more.
  7. Chevrolet has revealed their second New York Auto Show showing last night and it happens to be the 2015 Cruze. Now for those who were expecting the automaker to launch the next-generation model will be disappointed as the 2015 model is a refresh. The new model isn't expected for a little longer. Changes for the 2015 model begin with a larger front grille and reshaped taillights. LT and LTZ models get LED running lights mounted below the headlights. Inside is where the big changes are. The Cruze's infotainment system now can read text messages to the driver, has Apple's Siri Eyes Free voice controls if you have an iPhone, and a 4G LTE connection that allows the vehicle to act as a wi-fi hotspot. No mechanical changes have been announced. Pricing and other details will be announced at a later time. Update: I've added a couple shots from the NYIAS floor. Source: Chevrolet Press Release is on Page 2 Styling, OnStar 4G LTE, Siri Updates for 2015 Chevy Cruze Chevy's best-selling car is smarter looking, offers greater connectivity NEW YORK Chevrolet announced today the 2015 Cruze will debut at the New York International Auto Show with revised exterior styling, enhanced interior convenience and greater connectivity including new Text Message Alerts, Apple Siri integration and OnStar 4G LTE with available Wi-Fi hotspot. The new exterior styling cues are inspired by the all-new Impala and restyled 2014 Malibu, while more intuitive controls update the interior. New voice-controlled features enhance safety when responding to text messages in the vehicle. "We've simply made a great, versatile car even better," said Steve Majoros, Chevrolet director of passenger car and crossover marketing. "Chevrolet continues to design, build and sell the most compelling small cars in its history and the 2015 Cruze offers more of the features, connectivity and efficiency that are important to today's customers." The Cruze's facelift for 2015 refreshes the appearance for LS, LT, RS and LTZ models. A prominent dual-port front fascia takes styling cues from Impala and Malibu, contributing a more cohesive look across Chevrolet's sedan range including LED daytime running lamps on LT and LTZ trims. They complement the Cruze's swept-back headlamps, for a sportier presence. Several new exterior and interior colors will also be offered for 2015. Updates on the interior enhance convenience: Revised cupholders make it easier to insert and remove cups Trunk release relocated to the center console Door lock switches relocated from the center console to the front doors. In addition to LS, LT, RS and LTZ models, the 2015 Cruze lineup includes Cruze Eco (EPA-rated 42 mpg highway) and Cruze Diesel (EPA 46 mpg highway), the most efficient non-hybrid passenger car in America. That's about 10 percent greater efficiency than the Volkswagen Jetta TDI. The Cruze also delivers more horsepower (151 hp) and torque (264 lb-ft), than the Jetta TDI (140 hp / 236 lb-ft). Cruze Diesel's driving range is up to 717 miles per tank. Cruze offers more standard safety features than any other car in its class, including 2014 models of the Ford Focus and Toyota Corolla. Cruze has 10 standard air bags including side-impact and knee air bags for front passengers and offers side blind zone alert, rear cross traffic alert, rear park assist and a rearview camera. "Cruze remains a strong entry in the compact segment, with features that continue to bring new customers to Chevrolet," said Majoros. "Along with Spark, Spark EV, Sonic and Volt, Chevy's lineup of efficient, technologically advanced small cars is one of the industry's most compelling." A mobile hub with greater connectivityThe enhanced connectivity and convenience features for the 2015 Cruze include a new Text Message Alerts feature for smartphone users with Bluetooth profile (M.A.P.), which reads incoming texts through the vehicle's speakers, and Siri Eyes Free for iPhone iOS 6 and iOS 7 users to enhance connectivity and convenience. Each enables voice-controlled connectivity, to help keep phones in pockets and hands on the wheel. Additional standard and available features include: Seven-inch-diagonal color touch screen and additional USB ports Chevrolet connected by OnStar 4G LTE with built-in Wi-Fi hotspot Next-generation OnStar and MyLink enhancements with natural language voice recognition Available Chevrolet AppShop (later availability) Available navigation. OnStar 4G LTE with available Wi-Fi hotspot provides a mobile hub for drivers and passengers with easy access to apps and services that require a high-speed data connection. 4G LTE is the most current and fastest mobile data network 10 times faster than 3G. And with OnStar, it offers stronger, broader coverage than smartphones on the same network and it's easy to use: If the vehicle is on, the connection is on, allowing passengers to connect personal devices such as smartphones, laptops and tablets, to high-speed wireless Internet. Each vehicle can accommodate seven devices at one time. The Chevrolet AppShop allows owners to view all available apps and download them directly to the vehicle, then organize, update or delete them as needed. Available apps connect drivers to vehicle data, music, news, weather, travel information and more. View full article
  8. Consider Audi's plan for the A3 lineup in the U.S. There will be the A3 Sedan, S3 Sedan, A3 Cabriolet, a TDI version of the sedan, and A3 Sportback e-tron, which is the gasoline-electric hybrid. Pretty large lineup to say in the least? Well you can add another one as the company announced that the A3 Sportback TDI will becoming to the U.S. next summer at the New York Auto Show today. The A3 Sportback TDI will come with a new 2.0L TDI four-cylinder with 150 horsepower, paired with a six-speed S-Tronic dual-clutch automatic. Front-wheel drive is standard, but there is no mention if Audi's quattro all-wheel drive system will be available. Much like the sedan, the Sportback TDI will be available with a number of technology options such as Audi’s MMI infotainment system, Audi drive select, 4G LTE, and a Bang & Olufsen audio system. “The A3 TDI Sportback has an incredibly passionate and loyal fan base, this new version has been one of our most requested models since the announcement of the new A3 family. This new A3 TDI Sportback combines excellent fuel economy with advanced technology and utility and will make a stunning addition to the already impressive A3 family,” said Scott Keogh, President of Audi of America. Audi is keeping quiet on pricing and fuel economy for the A3 Sportback TDI for the time being. Source: Audi Press Release is on Page 2 Audi introduces the all-new Audi A3 TDI Sportback The decision to bring the Audi A3 Sportback TDI® clean diesel to the U.S. market follows an outpouring of enthusiasts’ support The newest model will arrive in 2015 to join the aggressive Audi push to expand the compact luxury segment The A3 TDI Sportback will join the A3 e-tron Sportback to provide a range of efficiency choices in a versatile design HERNDON, Va., April 16, 2014 – Fans have spoken and Audi is responding with the all-new Audi A3 TDI Sportback set to arrive in the U.S. in the summer of 2015. The A3 TDI Sportback is the latest model to join the newly launched Audi A3 family and the expanded model lineup of Audi TDI models. It will make its U.S. debut at the New York International Auto Show on April 16th. The A3 TDI Sportback is a premium, compact hatchback that pairs fuel efficiency and coupe-like looks with the utility of a crossover. Its quality engineering and advanced features offer ideal performance and functionality along with advanced technology and driving dynamics. “The A3 TDI Sportback has an incredibly passionate and loyal fan base, this new version has been one of our most requested models since the announcement of the new A3 family,” said Scott Keogh, President, Audi of America. “This new A3 TDI Sportback combines excellent fuel economy with advanced technology and utility and will make a stunning addition to the already impressive A3 family.” The A3 TDI Sportback will join the newly launched all-new A3 family, which will be introduced over the next 18 months – the Audi A3 Sedan, Audi A3 Cabriolet, A3 TDI clean diesel sedan, the high-performance S3 Sedan and the A3 Sportback e-tron® gasoline electric hybrid (PHEV). These vehicles are redefining the standards of the entry level premium market with new innovative technologies and the detailed craftsmanship found in larger flagship Audi sedans. In addition to advanced technology, the Audi A3 TDI Sportback will offer the consumer the fuel efficiency of the iconic Audi TDI clean diesel powertrain. This will include a 150 horsepower 2.0 TDI® clean diesel mated to the standard 6-speed S tronic® transmission. This transmission provides the driver immense shifting flexibility and driving pleasure with smooth, dynamic acceleration and virtually no interruption to the power flow. Audi has now answered with two sportback options, the A3 e-tron PHEV and the newly announced A3 TDI. When these two models reach the market next year Audi will have a compelling green narrative in the versatile sportback packaging. One choice for eco-conscious drivers facing a typical American commute, another for those with longer daily hauls who require the superb range TDI offers. The A3 marks the first time that an A-segment vehicle will offer available features including MMI® technology, Audi drive select, 4G LTE connectivity and Bang & Olufsen® audio. The new A3 family will feature the most advanced version of Audi connect®, including picture navigation, read-aloud news headlines, Facebook® and Twitter® alerts, access to more than 7,000 Web radio stations, personalized RSS news feeds and more.
  9. Consider Audi's plan for the A3 lineup in the U.S. There will be the A3 Sedan, S3 Sedan, A3 Cabriolet, a TDI version of the sedan, and A3 Sportback e-tron, which is the gasoline-electric hybrid. Pretty large lineup to say in the least? Well you can add another one as the company announced that the A3 Sportback TDI will becoming to the U.S. next summer at the New York Auto Show today. The A3 Sportback TDI will come with a new 2.0L TDI four-cylinder with 150 horsepower, paired with a six-speed S-Tronic dual-clutch automatic. Front-wheel drive is standard, but there is no mention if Audi's quattro all-wheel drive system will be available. Much like the sedan, the Sportback TDI will be available with a number of technology options such as Audi’s MMI infotainment system, Audi drive select, 4G LTE, and a Bang & Olufsen audio system. “The A3 TDI Sportback has an incredibly passionate and loyal fan base, this new version has been one of our most requested models since the announcement of the new A3 family. This new A3 TDI Sportback combines excellent fuel economy with advanced technology and utility and will make a stunning addition to the already impressive A3 family,” said Scott Keogh, President of Audi of America. Audi is keeping quiet on pricing and fuel economy for the A3 Sportback TDI for the time being. Source: Audi Press Release is on Page 2 Audi introduces the all-new Audi A3 TDI Sportback The decision to bring the Audi A3 Sportback TDI® clean diesel to the U.S. market follows an outpouring of enthusiasts’ support The newest model will arrive in 2015 to join the aggressive Audi push to expand the compact luxury segment The A3 TDI Sportback will join the A3 e-tron Sportback to provide a range of efficiency choices in a versatile design HERNDON, Va., April 16, 2014 – Fans have spoken and Audi is responding with the all-new Audi A3 TDI Sportback set to arrive in the U.S. in the summer of 2015. The A3 TDI Sportback is the latest model to join the newly launched Audi A3 family and the expanded model lineup of Audi TDI models. It will make its U.S. debut at the New York International Auto Show on April 16th. The A3 TDI Sportback is a premium, compact hatchback that pairs fuel efficiency and coupe-like looks with the utility of a crossover. Its quality engineering and advanced features offer ideal performance and functionality along with advanced technology and driving dynamics. “The A3 TDI Sportback has an incredibly passionate and loyal fan base, this new version has been one of our most requested models since the announcement of the new A3 family,” said Scott Keogh, President, Audi of America. “This new A3 TDI Sportback combines excellent fuel economy with advanced technology and utility and will make a stunning addition to the already impressive A3 family.” The A3 TDI Sportback will join the newly launched all-new A3 family, which will be introduced over the next 18 months – the Audi A3 Sedan, Audi A3 Cabriolet, A3 TDI clean diesel sedan, the high-performance S3 Sedan and the A3 Sportback e-tron® gasoline electric hybrid (PHEV). These vehicles are redefining the standards of the entry level premium market with new innovative technologies and the detailed craftsmanship found in larger flagship Audi sedans. In addition to advanced technology, the Audi A3 TDI Sportback will offer the consumer the fuel efficiency of the iconic Audi TDI clean diesel powertrain. This will include a 150 horsepower 2.0 TDI® clean diesel mated to the standard 6-speed S tronic® transmission. This transmission provides the driver immense shifting flexibility and driving pleasure with smooth, dynamic acceleration and virtually no interruption to the power flow. Audi has now answered with two sportback options, the A3 e-tron PHEV and the newly announced A3 TDI. When these two models reach the market next year Audi will have a compelling green narrative in the versatile sportback packaging. One choice for eco-conscious drivers facing a typical American commute, another for those with longer daily hauls who require the superb range TDI offers. The A3 marks the first time that an A-segment vehicle will offer available features including MMI® technology, Audi drive select, 4G LTE connectivity and Bang & Olufsen® audio. The new A3 family will feature the most advanced version of Audi connect®, including picture navigation, read-aloud news headlines, Facebook® and Twitter® alerts, access to more than 7,000 Web radio stations, personalized RSS news feeds and more. View full article
  10. I think Volkswagen needs an explanation with the usage of 'concept' with their showing of the Golf SportWagen concept at this week's New York Auto Show. The concept gives us an idea of what Volkswagen has in store for us when it arrives early next year. So why is Volkswgen calling this a concept? Most likely it comes down to the powertrain; a 2.0L TDI four-cylinder paired with a six-speed manual and VW's 4Motion all-wheel system. While the first two parts are common to Volkswagen models in the U.S., the addition of 4Motion to a compact model isn't. While we don't know if 4Motion will be coming as a option, the 2.0L TDI with 150 horsepower will. It will be available with either a six-speed manual or dual-clutch gearbox. The other engine will be VW's 1.8L turbo-four with 170 horsepower and can be paired with a five-speed manual or six-speed automatic. We'll have more information when the vehicle makes its official debut this coming week. Source: Volkswagen Press Release is on Page 2 ALL-NEW VOLKSWAGEN GOLF SPORTWAGEN MAKES ITS NORTH AMERICAN DEBUT AT THE NEW YORK INTERNATIONAL AUTO SHOW All-wheel-drive TDI® Clean Diesel concept version of VW's popular SportWagen model previews a bigger, more spacious, and more fuel-efficient replacement for the Jetta SportWagen - Thrifty TDI® Clean Diesel, and 1.8-liter turbocharged Golf SportWagen models will be offered - Uses the new MQB modular architecture, like the 2015 Golf and Golf GTI- Golf SportWagen will go on sale in the U.S. in the first quarter of 2015 - New SportWagen model is estimated to have fuel economy improvements of up to 17 percent- New Golf SportWagen offers increased cargo volume, matching compact SUVs for size and versatility Herndon, VA – Volkswagen of America, Inc. will debut a concept version of the latest SportWagen model that features a 4MOTION® all-wheel drive system and the new EA288 TD®I Clean Diesel engine at the New York Auto Show. The concept previews the all-new Golf SportWagen that goes on sale in early 2015. Based on the new MQB (modular transverse matrix) architecture, the Golf SportWagen will continue the trend introduced by the seventh generation Golf whereby it is lighter, bigger, roomier, more fuel efficient and more powerful than the outgoing SportWagen model. Thanks to the extensive use of high- and ultra-high strength steels, the new SportWagen bodyshell is lighter than the current Jetta SportWagen and offers an enhanced crash structure. Throughout the car, incredible attention to detail has optimized components-such as the seats, air conditioning unit, and even the electrical architecture -to help save weight. The Golf SportWagen is 1.1 inches longer and 0.7 inches wider than the current SportWagen model. It is also 0.9 inches lower, which benefits both aerodynamic performance and the car's proportions: the CdA number has been reduced by almost 10 percent compared with the previous generation. The interior package has been optimized to give more rear-seat leg- and shoulder room. Although the new SportWagen's overall height was lowered by nearly an inch, front and rear headroom has been improved by 0.4 inches. The SportWagen has long been a top choice for customers who want a car that's fun to drive and offers a large cargo area that is truly versatile. This new SportWagen is even more appealing, offering nearly 10 percent more cargo room with the rear seats folded than the outgoing model. Essentially, the Golf SportWagen provides a sportier alternative to compact SUVs. The new SportWagen will be offered with two powertrains. The Golf SportWagen will be powered by a 170 horsepower, 1.8-liter turbocharged and direct-injection four-cylinder TSI® engine, mated to five-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmissions. These powertrains offer manufacturer highway fuel economy that's improved by as much as 17 percent compared to the 2.5-liter Jetta SportWagen. The TDI Clean Diesel model will be powered by the new EA288 2.0-liter common-rail, turbocharged and direct-injection diesel engine that makes150 horsepower, an improvement of 10 hp over the current SportWagen model. The TDI model will have a choice of six-speed manual or DSG® dual-clutch automatic transmissions. Design The design team, led by Walter de Silva (Group Design) and Klaus Bischoff (VW Brand Design), created a timeless and sophisticated new SportWagen, using the principles of Volkswagen's Design DNA. Thanks to the MQB architecture, which dictates a fixed relationship between the front wheel centerline and the pedals, the car's proportions have changed. The front wheels, for example, are now 1.7 inches further forward than on the current SportWagen design. This has created what Bischoff calls "'a cab backward impression'. That's what we call the proportions of premium-class vehicles, where the hood is long and the passenger compartment is a long way towards the back." Compared with the previous generation SportWagen, the new car's front end looks completely different, thanks to the way that the hood slopes down into the front fenders instead of the fender peaks being higher than the hood. This new SportWagen features more angular horizontal design cues, with a slender radiator grille. At the back, the clean surface around the VW badge, the wide rear window, and the geometric taillights are typical SportWagen features, even though the lines are completely different. The tailgate, for instance, allows for a lower load height than before, while the overall effect emphasizes the additional width of the new car. Features Along the lines of the new Golf 7, the SportWagen will bring a number of available new features to market including a panoramic sunroof, 12-way power driver's seat, Climatronic® automatic climate control, Bi-Xenon headlights with LED DRLs and the Advanced Front-lighting System, Park Distance Control, and available 18-inch aluminum-alloy wheels. In addition, the new SportWagen features a new standard driver assistance system called the Automatic Post-Collision Braking System. This system automatically engages the vehicle's brakes after it is involved in a collision in order to help reduce secondary collisions and to help bring the vehicle to a stop. The system is triggered when the airbag sensors detect a primary collision and it is limited to a maximum retardation rate of 0.6g by the Electronic Stability Control (ESC) unit. The driver can effectively override the system at any time; for example, it is disabled if it recognizes that the driver is accelerating. The system is also deactivated if the driver initiates braking at a higher rate than 0.6g.
  11. I think Volkswagen needs an explanation with the usage of 'concept' with their showing of the Golf SportWagen concept at this week's New York Auto Show. The concept gives us an idea of what Volkswagen has in store for us when it arrives early next year. So why is Volkswgen calling this a concept? Most likely it comes down to the powertrain; a 2.0L TDI four-cylinder paired with a six-speed manual and VW's 4Motion all-wheel system. While the first two parts are common to Volkswagen models in the U.S., the addition of 4Motion to a compact model isn't. While we don't know if 4Motion will be coming as a option, the 2.0L TDI with 150 horsepower will. It will be available with either a six-speed manual or dual-clutch gearbox. The other engine will be VW's 1.8L turbo-four with 170 horsepower and can be paired with a five-speed manual or six-speed automatic. We'll have more information when the vehicle makes its official debut this coming week. Source: Volkswagen Press Release is on Page 2 ALL-NEW VOLKSWAGEN GOLF SPORTWAGEN MAKES ITS NORTH AMERICAN DEBUT AT THE NEW YORK INTERNATIONAL AUTO SHOW All-wheel-drive TDI® Clean Diesel concept version of VW's popular SportWagen model previews a bigger, more spacious, and more fuel-efficient replacement for the Jetta SportWagen - Thrifty TDI® Clean Diesel, and 1.8-liter turbocharged Golf SportWagen models will be offered - Uses the new MQB modular architecture, like the 2015 Golf and Golf GTI- Golf SportWagen will go on sale in the U.S. in the first quarter of 2015 - New SportWagen model is estimated to have fuel economy improvements of up to 17 percent- New Golf SportWagen offers increased cargo volume, matching compact SUVs for size and versatility Herndon, VA – Volkswagen of America, Inc. will debut a concept version of the latest SportWagen model that features a 4MOTION® all-wheel drive system and the new EA288 TD®I Clean Diesel engine at the New York Auto Show. The concept previews the all-new Golf SportWagen that goes on sale in early 2015. Based on the new MQB (modular transverse matrix) architecture, the Golf SportWagen will continue the trend introduced by the seventh generation Golf whereby it is lighter, bigger, roomier, more fuel efficient and more powerful than the outgoing SportWagen model. Thanks to the extensive use of high- and ultra-high strength steels, the new SportWagen bodyshell is lighter than the current Jetta SportWagen and offers an enhanced crash structure. Throughout the car, incredible attention to detail has optimized components-such as the seats, air conditioning unit, and even the electrical architecture -to help save weight. The Golf SportWagen is 1.1 inches longer and 0.7 inches wider than the current SportWagen model. It is also 0.9 inches lower, which benefits both aerodynamic performance and the car's proportions: the CdA number has been reduced by almost 10 percent compared with the previous generation. The interior package has been optimized to give more rear-seat leg- and shoulder room. Although the new SportWagen's overall height was lowered by nearly an inch, front and rear headroom has been improved by 0.4 inches. The SportWagen has long been a top choice for customers who want a car that's fun to drive and offers a large cargo area that is truly versatile. This new SportWagen is even more appealing, offering nearly 10 percent more cargo room with the rear seats folded than the outgoing model. Essentially, the Golf SportWagen provides a sportier alternative to compact SUVs. The new SportWagen will be offered with two powertrains. The Golf SportWagen will be powered by a 170 horsepower, 1.8-liter turbocharged and direct-injection four-cylinder TSI® engine, mated to five-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmissions. These powertrains offer manufacturer highway fuel economy that's improved by as much as 17 percent compared to the 2.5-liter Jetta SportWagen. The TDI Clean Diesel model will be powered by the new EA288 2.0-liter common-rail, turbocharged and direct-injection diesel engine that makes150 horsepower, an improvement of 10 hp over the current SportWagen model. The TDI model will have a choice of six-speed manual or DSG® dual-clutch automatic transmissions. Design The design team, led by Walter de Silva (Group Design) and Klaus Bischoff (VW Brand Design), created a timeless and sophisticated new SportWagen, using the principles of Volkswagen's Design DNA. Thanks to the MQB architecture, which dictates a fixed relationship between the front wheel centerline and the pedals, the car's proportions have changed. The front wheels, for example, are now 1.7 inches further forward than on the current SportWagen design. This has created what Bischoff calls "'a cab backward impression'. That's what we call the proportions of premium-class vehicles, where the hood is long and the passenger compartment is a long way towards the back." Compared with the previous generation SportWagen, the new car's front end looks completely different, thanks to the way that the hood slopes down into the front fenders instead of the fender peaks being higher than the hood. This new SportWagen features more angular horizontal design cues, with a slender radiator grille. At the back, the clean surface around the VW badge, the wide rear window, and the geometric taillights are typical SportWagen features, even though the lines are completely different. The tailgate, for instance, allows for a lower load height than before, while the overall effect emphasizes the additional width of the new car. Features Along the lines of the new Golf 7, the SportWagen will bring a number of available new features to market including a panoramic sunroof, 12-way power driver's seat, Climatronic® automatic climate control, Bi-Xenon headlights with LED DRLs and the Advanced Front-lighting System, Park Distance Control, and available 18-inch aluminum-alloy wheels. In addition, the new SportWagen features a new standard driver assistance system called the Automatic Post-Collision Braking System. This system automatically engages the vehicle's brakes after it is involved in a collision in order to help reduce secondary collisions and to help bring the vehicle to a stop. The system is triggered when the airbag sensors detect a primary collision and it is limited to a maximum retardation rate of 0.6g by the Electronic Stability Control (ESC) unit. The driver can effectively override the system at any time; for example, it is disabled if it recognizes that the driver is accelerating. The system is also deactivated if the driver initiates braking at a higher rate than 0.6g. View full article
  12. Let's go back in time, say about 2002 or so. It was then that Nissan introduced the Murano crossover and started a movement, A movement that cause many automakers to start building crossovers and proving that you don't need to make a SUV/Crossover look like a box. Well Nissan hopes to continue that movement with the third-generation Murano, which makes its official debut this week at the New York Auto Show. The third-generation Murano's design is very much in line with the Resonance Concept shown at last year's Detroit Auto Show. The front end has a toned-down version of the "V-Motion" nose and the boomerang-shaped headlights. Another design cue carried over from the Resonance Concept is the "floating" roof which is pulled off by Nissan designers blacking-out the D-pillars. One other item about the third-generation Murano's design; the body now has a 0.31 coefficient of drag, which means the new model is about sixteen percent more aerodynamic than the outgoing model. Moving to the interior, Nissan has really separated the Murano from the new Pathfinder and Rogue crossovers. The design theme is a "upscale social lounge" (were not sure what it means either). Materials look to be much more premium, while the dashboard and center console have been lowered to improve visibility and the feeling of space. The Murano still has seating for five people, but now features a larger cargo area. There is also a larger panoramic moonroof. Power will be the same as the previous Murano; the venerable 3.5L VQ V6 with 260 horsepower and 240 pound-feet of torque. Nissan's latest version of the Xtronic continually variable transmission will route the power to either the front or all four wheels. Fuel economy figures haven't been released, but the company does say the new model will see a 20 percent improvement. The 2015 Murano will become the ninth vehicle built at Nissan's Canton, Mississippi plant and hits dealers sometime in the fourth quarter of this year. Source: Nissan Press Release is on Page 2 2015 Nissan Murano Press Kit: Overview 2015 Nissan Murano Resets The Standard In The Midsize Crossover Segment With Breakthrough Design, Premium Interior And Purposeful Technology Third generation of Nissan's popular flagship crossover symbolizes Nissan's design-led product and brand renaissance Murano styling delivers bold Resonance Concept's refined intensity exterior and social lounge interior Carries forward new Nissan design direction with V-Motion front end, boomerang lights, floating roof treatment and efficient aerodynamics All-new Murano arrives in Nissan showrooms in late 2014 The first-generation Nissan Murano had a profound impact on the SUV market when it was introduced for the 2003 model year. In addition to being one of the first crossovers on the market, it offered a fresh design sensibility that combined an elegant style with premium features – without a luxury price tag. Murano quickly attracted a loyal, enthusiastic owner base and remained a "class of one" as other manufacturers scrambled to catch up. The second-generation Murano, introduced for model year 2009, maintained its strong position as the halo vehicle for Nissan crossovers – even as new Nissan SUVs like the bold JUKE sports crossover, all-new unibody Pathfinder and compact Rogue joined the product portfolio. When it came time to consider an all-new third generation, Murano had a high standard to meet – its own. So while the original was inspired by the elegance of the famed Italian Murano glassware from which the model took its name, the third-generation took its cues from the future, expressed in the form of the Nissan Resonance Concept vehicle. A Concept Brought to the Showroom "At Nissan, we create concept vehicles with an eye toward production, rather than just for entertaining auto show audiences," said Andy Palmer, chief planning officer and executive vice president, Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. "Likely few people who saw Resonance in its North American International Auto Show debut imagined that we could build such a futuristic design. But here it is, ready to hit Nissan showrooms less than 24 months later." Though one was conceptual and the other production-based, Resonance and the new Murano were created on parallel tracks – with shared design themes and key attributes such as their boomerang lights and unique floating roof treatment. Like the first-generation Murano, the 2015 version is a highly sculptural, highly emotional design – one that once again stands out in a field known more for uniformity and utility-based styling. "Murano owners live in an environment – home, work and car – that is beautiful, well-designed and efficiently run. They are social and embrace technology," said Palmer. "The new Murano had to embrace all of these values, while also taking a major leap forward in terms of its 'Wow' factor." Working to capture the breathtaking spirit and artistry of the first Murano, the designers began by concentrating on the new vehicle's sculptural qualities. Breaking the usual order of sketching, computer renderings and then clay modeling, the Murano team started working with small three-dimensional clay forms – literally exploring organic shapes and volumes with mini desktop sculptures. The process helped narrow down a new Nissan design direction focused on lightness and efficiency. A Lightness of Form "One of the central constructs for both the exterior and interior of the new Murano was to 'elevate your experience,' which is counterintuitive to the heaviness and chunkiness of the traditional sport utility vehicle," said Nakamura. "This helped inspire the push for leading-edge aerodynamic and three key elements of our future designs – the V-Motion front end, signature lighting and the 'floating' roofline." In keeping with the idea of futuristic travel, the designers sought to create a gravity-like power to pull viewers into the design visually, while defying gravity with a lightness of form through the use of glass and flowing lines. The prominent glass areas of the first-generation Murano were retained and expanded with the new design, including the use of its jet-inspired roof and D-pillars that appear disconnected from the roof that help visually lighten the cabin. The result is a unique floating feeling that can be recognized from very far away. Another key element is the continued refinement of the boomerang-style headlights and taillights, which were originally introduced on the Nissan 370Z. For use with the new Murano, the shapes were slimmed and pushed to extremes to look like they flow with the wind. "The lights' LED Daytime Running Light accents are instantly recognizable at night. While becoming a Murano signature, they were an engineering challenge," explained Nakamura. The available LED headlights, while providing excellent efficiency and durability (versus halogen and xenon lights), required extensive tuning to refine the shape and light intensity. The design of the standard LED taillights had to be balanced with the required crossover utility, with the final shape seamlessly integrated into the rear glass, conveying a high-tech quality. Murano's sculptural bodysides also created an engineering challenge, especially in the strong curvature of the rear fender stampings. While similar in dimensions to the previous generation Muranos, the new design is slightly lower, wider and longer, enhancing the aerodynamics while not compromising the desired crossover height and stance. The lower rocker panels offer a balance of aerodynamics and ruggedness. Other critical details, such as the grille shutter, fender lip moldings, rear bumper surfacing, rear tire deflectors and integrated rear spoiler help achieve a more than 16 percent improvement in overall aerodynamics (versus the previous generation design). "The designers and engineers invested three times the normal wind tunnel testing of the new Murano to get to its 0.31 coefficient of drag, on par with many sports cars," added Nakamura. A New Way to Travel "Beyond the sense of elegant style and premium features, owners of the first two generations often tell us about the 'effortlessness of Murano' – the great front view, the low instrument panel, the comfort and ease of operation. These are all things we kept and exaggerated in the new model," said Nakamura. The exterior theme of futuristic travel and refined intensity continue throughout the Murano interior, starting the moment the doors are opened with its available advanced lighting system, open and comfortable feeling and use of premium materials. Continuing the idea of a concept car brought to production, the new Murano shares the look and feel of the Resonance. The upscale social lounge interior, for example, creates an inviting and comfortable atmosphere. The instrument panel height is lower than previous Muranos. Centered between the outer wings is a large information and control center with an available 8.0-inch color display with multi-touch control. Keeping with the idea of "beauty with simplicity," the number of audio and navigation switches has been reduced by 60 percent – from 25 to 10 – for a more user-friendly experience. "We've learned from personal electronics that consumers aren't always looking for devices that do more, they just want it done better," said Nakamura. "People rarely read the directions for their smartphone because they know intuitively how to operate them. We believe vehicles should behave the same way – it's a new and better way to travel." Adding to the driver's sense of connectedness with security is Nissan's Advanced Drive-Assist™ Display, an enhanced version of the popular instrument panel feature offered in the new Altima and Pathfinder. For use in the new Murano, it includes a number of new features, including a 7.0-inch high-resolution color display. Available audio systems include an advanced Bose® design with 11 speakers (including dual subwoofers), HD Radio® and SiriusXM Satellite Radio (SiriusXM subscription required, sold separately). Also offered are NissanConnectSM with Navigation and Mobile Apps. Nissan's advanced NASA-inspired Zero Gravity seats are standard for front and rear outboard occupants. The rear seats are a three-cushion design, a first for a Nissan vehicle. Climate-controlled seats (heating and cooling) are available in front, along with available Quick Comfort™ heated rear seats. Other interior features include standard Dual-Zone Automatic Temperature Control and Nissan Intelligent Key® with Push Button Ignition, along with available leather-appointed seating, heated steering wheel, steering wheel position memory, driver's seat and outside mirror memory, power folding rear seats and Remote Engine Start with Intelligent Climate Control. Overhead, the available Power Panoramic Moonroof enhances the open, airy feeling. The moonroof has a 40 percent longer sliding length and 29 percent larger opening than the previous generation design. It is projected to be among the largest moonroofs in the segment. Conversation between front and rear occupants is encouraged by the new Murano's "communication alley" created by the wide, low center console. The console also includes a compartment for rear occupants' smartphone. There is also an available USB port for the rear seats that allows for control of music and display, along with ample storage areas and compartments throughout the interior. "We want everyone to feel like they are being taken care of, not just the driver. It's a continuation of the social lounge theme introduced in the Resonance Concept – a place you want to share with friends," added Nakamura. "Of course, not to be overlooked is Murano's crossover versatility, which is why the segment has become so popular in the first place." The new Murano's cargo area has been reconfigured (versus the previous generation) to provide a projected best storage space in the segment (with seats up). The rear cargo area, for example, accommodates four large suitcases, while the rear seats fold flat for greater cargo convenience. With the easy rear seat release and available power rear seat return, Murano converts from people hauler to cargo ship or back within seconds. All configurations can be done from the back, with no walking to each door. Standard 3.5-liter V6 and an Extra Set of Eyes The 2015 Murano will be available at launch with a standard 3.5-liter DOHC V6 rated at 260 horsepower and 240 lb-ft of torque. Also standard is an advanced Xtronic transmission tuned for quick response and smoothness. Fuel economy is projected to be enhanced by approximately 20 percent versus the current generation Murano, due to the approximate 130-pound overall weight reduction, enhanced aerodynamics and engine/transmission efficiencies. Like the previous generation, the new Murano will offer responsive handling and a comfortable ride through use of a 4-wheel independent suspension featuring a front strut/rear multi-link design. Also standard are 4-wheel disc brakes with Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) and power-assisted rack-and-pinion steering. Sporty 18-inch or 20-inch machine-finished aluminum-alloy wheels are also available. The 2015 Murano is offered in front-wheel drive or intuitive all-wheel drive. "While driving a new Murano is designed to be an exciting social experience, we also intend it to be a safe one," said Andy Palmer, chief planning officer and executive vice president, Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. "We've given Murano 'an extra set of eyes' – a suite of advanced safety features designed to help look out for you." The new Murano incorporates up to four onboard cameras (front, rear, two side) and three radar systems (one front, two side) to provide input to a range of available technologies, including Blind Spot Warning (BSW), Predictive Forward Collision Warning (PFCW) Forward Emergency Braking (FEB) and Intelligent Cruise Control. The new Cross Traffic Alert (CTA) system utilizes radar to detect a vehicle approaching from either side of the Murano when backing out of a parking space. Parking a new Murano is made easier with the available class-exclusive Around View® Monitor with Moving Object Detection, which is designed to reduce the normal complexity of parallel parking by giving an all-around view of the surrounding area from front, rear and side cameras. The system is not just for parallel parking, however, helping view the vehicle's placement in pull-in spots, garages and against curbs. The Moving Object Detection (MOD) system helps the driver to detect moving objects such as shopping carts or strollers when backing out via an on-screen notification and warning chime. Murano also includes as standard the Nissan Advanced Air Bag System (AABS) with dual stage supplemental front air bags with seat belt sensors and an occupant classification sensor, front-seat mounted side-impact supplemental air bags, roof-mounted curtain side-impact supplemental air bags with rollover sensor and driver's seat knee air bag. "With advanced, purposeful technology designed to keep you safe and connected, along with its refined everyday driving experience, this all-new Murano adds the solid substance to go with its unmatched emotional style," said Palmer. A Range of Models, Now Assembled in America The 2015 Nissan Murano will be offered in four grade levels when it goes on sale in late 2014: S, SV, SL and Platinum. Each is available in front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive. The new Murano also becomes the first Murano (and the ninth vehicle) assembled in Nissan's Canton, Mississippi plant, which is the most diverse facility by number of models in Nissan's North American network. The Canton Vehicle Assembly Plant becomes the global source for Murano production, creating export opportunities to more than 100 markets. Murano will be assembled on the same line as Xterra, Frontier, Titan and Armada. "Murano resets the standard in class once again," concluded Palmer.
  13. Let's go back in time, say about 2002 or so. It was then that Nissan introduced the Murano crossover and started a movement, A movement that cause many automakers to start building crossovers and proving that you don't need to make a SUV/Crossover look like a box. Well Nissan hopes to continue that movement with the third-generation Murano, which makes its official debut this week at the New York Auto Show. The third-generation Murano's design is very much in line with the Resonance Concept shown at last year's Detroit Auto Show. The front end has a toned-down version of the "V-Motion" nose and the boomerang-shaped headlights. Another design cue carried over from the Resonance Concept is the "floating" roof which is pulled off by Nissan designers blacking-out the D-pillars. One other item about the third-generation Murano's design; the body now has a 0.31 coefficient of drag, which means the new model is about sixteen percent more aerodynamic than the outgoing model. Moving to the interior, Nissan has really separated the Murano from the new Pathfinder and Rogue crossovers. The design theme is a "upscale social lounge" (were not sure what it means either). Materials look to be much more premium, while the dashboard and center console have been lowered to improve visibility and the feeling of space. The Murano still has seating for five people, but now features a larger cargo area. There is also a larger panoramic moonroof. Power will be the same as the previous Murano; the venerable 3.5L VQ V6 with 260 horsepower and 240 pound-feet of torque. Nissan's latest version of the Xtronic continually variable transmission will route the power to either the front or all four wheels. Fuel economy figures haven't been released, but the company does say the new model will see a 20 percent improvement. The 2015 Murano will become the ninth vehicle built at Nissan's Canton, Mississippi plant and hits dealers sometime in the fourth quarter of this year. Source: Nissan Press Release is on Page 2 2015 Nissan Murano Press Kit: Overview 2015 Nissan Murano Resets The Standard In The Midsize Crossover Segment With Breakthrough Design, Premium Interior And Purposeful Technology Third generation of Nissan's popular flagship crossover symbolizes Nissan's design-led product and brand renaissance Murano styling delivers bold Resonance Concept's refined intensity exterior and social lounge interior Carries forward new Nissan design direction with V-Motion front end, boomerang lights, floating roof treatment and efficient aerodynamics All-new Murano arrives in Nissan showrooms in late 2014 The first-generation Nissan Murano had a profound impact on the SUV market when it was introduced for the 2003 model year. In addition to being one of the first crossovers on the market, it offered a fresh design sensibility that combined an elegant style with premium features – without a luxury price tag. Murano quickly attracted a loyal, enthusiastic owner base and remained a "class of one" as other manufacturers scrambled to catch up. The second-generation Murano, introduced for model year 2009, maintained its strong position as the halo vehicle for Nissan crossovers – even as new Nissan SUVs like the bold JUKE sports crossover, all-new unibody Pathfinder and compact Rogue joined the product portfolio. When it came time to consider an all-new third generation, Murano had a high standard to meet – its own. So while the original was inspired by the elegance of the famed Italian Murano glassware from which the model took its name, the third-generation took its cues from the future, expressed in the form of the Nissan Resonance Concept vehicle. A Concept Brought to the Showroom "At Nissan, we create concept vehicles with an eye toward production, rather than just for entertaining auto show audiences," said Andy Palmer, chief planning officer and executive vice president, Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. "Likely few people who saw Resonance in its North American International Auto Show debut imagined that we could build such a futuristic design. But here it is, ready to hit Nissan showrooms less than 24 months later." Though one was conceptual and the other production-based, Resonance and the new Murano were created on parallel tracks – with shared design themes and key attributes such as their boomerang lights and unique floating roof treatment. Like the first-generation Murano, the 2015 version is a highly sculptural, highly emotional design – one that once again stands out in a field known more for uniformity and utility-based styling. "Murano owners live in an environment – home, work and car – that is beautiful, well-designed and efficiently run. They are social and embrace technology," said Palmer. "The new Murano had to embrace all of these values, while also taking a major leap forward in terms of its 'Wow' factor." Working to capture the breathtaking spirit and artistry of the first Murano, the designers began by concentrating on the new vehicle's sculptural qualities. Breaking the usual order of sketching, computer renderings and then clay modeling, the Murano team started working with small three-dimensional clay forms – literally exploring organic shapes and volumes with mini desktop sculptures. The process helped narrow down a new Nissan design direction focused on lightness and efficiency. A Lightness of Form "One of the central constructs for both the exterior and interior of the new Murano was to 'elevate your experience,' which is counterintuitive to the heaviness and chunkiness of the traditional sport utility vehicle," said Nakamura. "This helped inspire the push for leading-edge aerodynamic and three key elements of our future designs – the V-Motion front end, signature lighting and the 'floating' roofline." In keeping with the idea of futuristic travel, the designers sought to create a gravity-like power to pull viewers into the design visually, while defying gravity with a lightness of form through the use of glass and flowing lines. The prominent glass areas of the first-generation Murano were retained and expanded with the new design, including the use of its jet-inspired roof and D-pillars that appear disconnected from the roof that help visually lighten the cabin. The result is a unique floating feeling that can be recognized from very far away. Another key element is the continued refinement of the boomerang-style headlights and taillights, which were originally introduced on the Nissan 370Z. For use with the new Murano, the shapes were slimmed and pushed to extremes to look like they flow with the wind. "The lights' LED Daytime Running Light accents are instantly recognizable at night. While becoming a Murano signature, they were an engineering challenge," explained Nakamura. The available LED headlights, while providing excellent efficiency and durability (versus halogen and xenon lights), required extensive tuning to refine the shape and light intensity. The design of the standard LED taillights had to be balanced with the required crossover utility, with the final shape seamlessly integrated into the rear glass, conveying a high-tech quality. Murano's sculptural bodysides also created an engineering challenge, especially in the strong curvature of the rear fender stampings. While similar in dimensions to the previous generation Muranos, the new design is slightly lower, wider and longer, enhancing the aerodynamics while not compromising the desired crossover height and stance. The lower rocker panels offer a balance of aerodynamics and ruggedness. Other critical details, such as the grille shutter, fender lip moldings, rear bumper surfacing, rear tire deflectors and integrated rear spoiler help achieve a more than 16 percent improvement in overall aerodynamics (versus the previous generation design). "The designers and engineers invested three times the normal wind tunnel testing of the new Murano to get to its 0.31 coefficient of drag, on par with many sports cars," added Nakamura. A New Way to Travel "Beyond the sense of elegant style and premium features, owners of the first two generations often tell us about the 'effortlessness of Murano' – the great front view, the low instrument panel, the comfort and ease of operation. These are all things we kept and exaggerated in the new model," said Nakamura. The exterior theme of futuristic travel and refined intensity continue throughout the Murano interior, starting the moment the doors are opened with its available advanced lighting system, open and comfortable feeling and use of premium materials. Continuing the idea of a concept car brought to production, the new Murano shares the look and feel of the Resonance. The upscale social lounge interior, for example, creates an inviting and comfortable atmosphere. The instrument panel height is lower than previous Muranos. Centered between the outer wings is a large information and control center with an available 8.0-inch color display with multi-touch control. Keeping with the idea of "beauty with simplicity," the number of audio and navigation switches has been reduced by 60 percent – from 25 to 10 – for a more user-friendly experience. "We've learned from personal electronics that consumers aren't always looking for devices that do more, they just want it done better," said Nakamura. "People rarely read the directions for their smartphone because they know intuitively how to operate them. We believe vehicles should behave the same way – it's a new and better way to travel." Adding to the driver's sense of connectedness with security is Nissan's Advanced Drive-Assist™ Display, an enhanced version of the popular instrument panel feature offered in the new Altima and Pathfinder. For use in the new Murano, it includes a number of new features, including a 7.0-inch high-resolution color display. Available audio systems include an advanced Bose® design with 11 speakers (including dual subwoofers), HD Radio® and SiriusXM Satellite Radio (SiriusXM subscription required, sold separately). Also offered are NissanConnectSM with Navigation and Mobile Apps. Nissan's advanced NASA-inspired Zero Gravity seats are standard for front and rear outboard occupants. The rear seats are a three-cushion design, a first for a Nissan vehicle. Climate-controlled seats (heating and cooling) are available in front, along with available Quick Comfort™ heated rear seats. Other interior features include standard Dual-Zone Automatic Temperature Control and Nissan Intelligent Key® with Push Button Ignition, along with available leather-appointed seating, heated steering wheel, steering wheel position memory, driver's seat and outside mirror memory, power folding rear seats and Remote Engine Start with Intelligent Climate Control. Overhead, the available Power Panoramic Moonroof enhances the open, airy feeling. The moonroof has a 40 percent longer sliding length and 29 percent larger opening than the previous generation design. It is projected to be among the largest moonroofs in the segment. Conversation between front and rear occupants is encouraged by the new Murano's "communication alley" created by the wide, low center console. The console also includes a compartment for rear occupants' smartphone. There is also an available USB port for the rear seats that allows for control of music and display, along with ample storage areas and compartments throughout the interior. "We want everyone to feel like they are being taken care of, not just the driver. It's a continuation of the social lounge theme introduced in the Resonance Concept – a place you want to share with friends," added Nakamura. "Of course, not to be overlooked is Murano's crossover versatility, which is why the segment has become so popular in the first place." The new Murano's cargo area has been reconfigured (versus the previous generation) to provide a projected best storage space in the segment (with seats up). The rear cargo area, for example, accommodates four large suitcases, while the rear seats fold flat for greater cargo convenience. With the easy rear seat release and available power rear seat return, Murano converts from people hauler to cargo ship or back within seconds. All configurations can be done from the back, with no walking to each door. Standard 3.5-liter V6 and an Extra Set of Eyes The 2015 Murano will be available at launch with a standard 3.5-liter DOHC V6 rated at 260 horsepower and 240 lb-ft of torque. Also standard is an advanced Xtronic transmission tuned for quick response and smoothness. Fuel economy is projected to be enhanced by approximately 20 percent versus the current generation Murano, due to the approximate 130-pound overall weight reduction, enhanced aerodynamics and engine/transmission efficiencies. Like the previous generation, the new Murano will offer responsive handling and a comfortable ride through use of a 4-wheel independent suspension featuring a front strut/rear multi-link design. Also standard are 4-wheel disc brakes with Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) and power-assisted rack-and-pinion steering. Sporty 18-inch or 20-inch machine-finished aluminum-alloy wheels are also available. The 2015 Murano is offered in front-wheel drive or intuitive all-wheel drive. "While driving a new Murano is designed to be an exciting social experience, we also intend it to be a safe one," said Andy Palmer, chief planning officer and executive vice president, Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. "We've given Murano 'an extra set of eyes' – a suite of advanced safety features designed to help look out for you." The new Murano incorporates up to four onboard cameras (front, rear, two side) and three radar systems (one front, two side) to provide input to a range of available technologies, including Blind Spot Warning (BSW), Predictive Forward Collision Warning (PFCW) Forward Emergency Braking (FEB) and Intelligent Cruise Control. The new Cross Traffic Alert (CTA) system utilizes radar to detect a vehicle approaching from either side of the Murano when backing out of a parking space. Parking a new Murano is made easier with the available class-exclusive Around View® Monitor with Moving Object Detection, which is designed to reduce the normal complexity of parallel parking by giving an all-around view of the surrounding area from front, rear and side cameras. The system is not just for parallel parking, however, helping view the vehicle's placement in pull-in spots, garages and against curbs. The Moving Object Detection (MOD) system helps the driver to detect moving objects such as shopping carts or strollers when backing out via an on-screen notification and warning chime. Murano also includes as standard the Nissan Advanced Air Bag System (AABS) with dual stage supplemental front air bags with seat belt sensors and an occupant classification sensor, front-seat mounted side-impact supplemental air bags, roof-mounted curtain side-impact supplemental air bags with rollover sensor and driver's seat knee air bag. "With advanced, purposeful technology designed to keep you safe and connected, along with its refined everyday driving experience, this all-new Murano adds the solid substance to go with its unmatched emotional style," said Palmer. A Range of Models, Now Assembled in America The 2015 Nissan Murano will be offered in four grade levels when it goes on sale in late 2014: S, SV, SL and Platinum. Each is available in front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive. The new Murano also becomes the first Murano (and the ninth vehicle) assembled in Nissan's Canton, Mississippi plant, which is the most diverse facility by number of models in Nissan's North American network. The Canton Vehicle Assembly Plant becomes the global source for Murano production, creating export opportunities to more than 100 markets. Murano will be assembled on the same line as Xterra, Frontier, Titan and Armada. "Murano resets the standard in class once again," concluded Palmer. View full article
  14. Kia has been an outlier in the minivan class with the Sedona. It never quite had the same status as the Chrysler Town & Country/Dodge Caravan, Honda Odyssey, and Toyota Sienna. But the company plans to change that with the introduction of the 2015 Sedona at the New York Auto Show this week. The 2015 Sedona's design reminds us the of the Nissan Quest with its upright lines and slab-slides. The front end has Kia's distinctive grille with new headlights with LEDs. An integrated spoiler on the tailgate is standard, while nineteen-inch alloy wheels are optional. Inside, the Sedona can be configured to carry seven or eight people. The seats can be equipped with heat, retractable leg rests, and Slide-n-Stow second-row seats that stack vertically against the back of the front seats. The dashboard resembles the Cadenza with a large touchscreen featuring Kia's UVO infotainment system and a simple control layout. Power will come from the 3.3L GDI V6 with 276 horsepower and 248 pound-feet of torque. This is paired with a six-speed automatic transmission. Kia says the Sedona will provide "improved driving dynamics" thanks in part to a chassis that is 36 percent stiffer than the outgoing model. The 2015 Sedona arrives at dealers sometime late in the fall. Source: Kia William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 ALL-NEW 2015 KIA SEDONA MAKES GLOBAL DEBUT IN CONJUNCTION WITH THE NEW YORK INTERNATIONAL AUTO SHOW * Completely Redesigned Midsize Multi-purpose Vehicle Raises the Bar in the Segment with Innovative Technology, Style and Added Safety Features * With its modern appearance and CUV-like cab-forward design, the all-new Sedona completes the restyling of Kia's entire U.S. lineup under the direction of Peter Schreyer * Available in seven- and eight-passenger configurations, the 2015 Sedona advances value to new levels of sophistication with advanced safety features and available driving-aid technologies, premium materials and amenities NEW YORK, April 14, 2014 – Set against the backdrop of one of the world's premier urban playgrounds, Kia Motors America (KMA) today took the wraps off the all-new 2015 Sedona midsize multi-purpose vehicle in New York City. As the final chapter in Kia's design-led transformation story – which began in 2009 and has seen a comprehensive makeover of Kia's entire model line under the direction of chief design officer Peter Schreyer – the all-new Sedona's CUV-like styling and proportions offer all of the functional convenience of the segment while defying its design limitations. In addition to innovative European-inspired design, the 2015 Sedona also delivers the exceptional interior volume buyers expect in the segment with ample passenger and cargo room and a quiet and comfortable cabin. Following the philosophy that has guided Kia's recent succession of highly successful redesigns, the Sedona advances value to new levels of sophistication with a host of segment-leading new technology and upscale features, all of which will be offered in a new premium trim level – SXL – which will be available when U.S. sales are scheduled to begin in the late third quarter or early fourth quarter of this year. Pricing will be announced closer to the Sedona's launch date. "Throughout the development process, our engineers in the U.S. and Korea focused on adding the element of desire to the all-new Sedona with improved driving dynamics and power and the incorporation of modern styling cues, premium materials and technology," said Orth Hedrick, vice president, product planning, KMA. "Combined with a host of active and passive safety features and technology, the completely redesigned Sedona retains the functionality the nameplate has always been known for, while rising to meet the diverse needs – and tastes – of today's consumers." Modern, Confident Exterior Transcending mundane functionality, the Sedona's wide stance exudes a modern, CUV-like exterior appearance highlighted by a front fascia and cab-forward design that project confidence and strength. The Sedona's muscular face and clean, smooth look is highlighted by a fully integrated version of Kia's signature grille and headlamps with LED positioning lights. The wheelbase is 1.6-inches longer than its predecessor, and the side profile, with its reduced front and rear overhangs, combines with the deeply swept windshield and available 19-inch alloy wheels to create a distinctive look. Meanwhile, the rear design layout, with LED taillights, integrated bumper guard and standard roof spoiler, presents a broad, stable bearing. Open, Relaxed, Configurable Interior Despite its overall width and height remaining virtually unchanged, the all-new Sedona provides more front shoulder room, greater leg room in the front, second and third rows, as well as a slightly higher hip-point, improving outward visibility for the driver. The horizontal design cues across the instrument panel create a greater sense of width, and the generous use of soft-touch materials adds to the all-new Sedona's premium ambiance. The Sedona's proportions provide flexible seating in both seven- and eight-passenger configurations and a multitude of storage options. The front center console is unique to the segment and allows for generous and cleverly convenient storage space between the front seats. Second row Slide-n-Stow tracked seating slides and folds upright to allow for "on-the-go" cargo hauling while eliminating the hassle that comes with removing heavy and cumbersome middle seats. The all-new Sedona also offers the choice of second row "First Class" lounge seating that can be positioned rearward for astonishing legroom and provides retractable lower leg rests. And while some configurations feature segment-unique second-row seat cushion heaters for added comfort, all 2015 Sedona models offer a third-row that provides the convenience of a split folding 60/40 in-floor retractable design. The Sedona also is the only vehicle in the segment outfitted with standard YES Essentials™ fabric technology to provide anti-microbial protection from spills, anti-static protection from irritating electrical shocks as well as stain-repelling and stain-releasing fabric characteristics appreciated by anyone who leads an active lifestyle. The Sedona's sophisticated interior design theme is brought to life with a modern color palette featuring solid or two-tone color options in beige, gray and burgundy for a warm and inviting atmosphere. The top-line SXL trim features standard ultra-soft Nappa leather seating surfaces throughout the cabin, the same Chromium-free leather found in the K900 luxury sedan. Next-Generation UVO1 Building on the next-generation UVO Infotainment & Telematics system, the all-new Sedona will be the first Kia vehicle to offer four new eServices features: Geo-fencing, Speed Alert, Curfew Alert and Driving Score. Additionally, with the introduction of the Kia App store, select apps can be downloaded for free from iTunes®2 or Google Play3. The Kia app connector is now available for partnership with the content community, including Pandora®4, iHeart Radio and Yelp®5. Many more new technologies for comfort and convenience are featured in the new UVO system, including Siri "Eyes Free6" and Local Search – powered by Google – for finding locations, addresses and points of interest. Sirius XM Travel Link7, offering access to traffic, weather, fuel prices, sports scores, stock information and movie times, makes the Sedona the perfect companion for those who live their lives on the road with family and friends. Driving Dynamics and Safety The 2015 Sedona is built on an all-new chassis with static torsional stiffness that is 36-percent greater than its closest segment competitor. The body is 76 percent Ultra High Strength Steel (press hardened) or High Strength Steel, which provides exceptional rigidity, durability and collision protection in a lightweight design. For enhanced roof strength, the Sedona has been engineered with reinforced pillars that distribute impact loads with ultra-high-strength steel tubes that run inside the A-pillars. Extensive use of adhesives and large diameter welds also add to Sedona's overall structural integrity and strength. Together with Kia's patented technology, the 2015 Sedona is targeted to earn the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's (NHTSA) 5-Star overall vehicle safety rating. The rigid and durable chassis provides a solid base for road-trip readiness. The 2015 Sedona utilizes Amplitude Selected Dampers (ASD) to strike an optimal balance of ride comfort and handling. The platform also has revised rear cross-member bushings, an isolated rear sub-frame with longer trailing arms and added rear strut reinforcement, all of which combine for improved dynamic ride characteristics. Additionally, the 2015 Sedona is expected to be among the quietest in the segment thanks to wheel-house padding, double seal sliding doors and an expanded use of sound-deadening foam in the engine compartment, reducing noise and perceived harshness over rough pavement. Under the hood, a new Lambda Gasoline Direct Injection (GDI) 3.3-liter V6 engine replaces the 3.5-liter V6 found in the previous generation Sedona. The 3.3-liter engine, which is also found in the Sorento CUV and Cadenza premium sedan, delivers more power than its predecessor, boasting 276 horsepower at 6,000 rpm, and it has been tuned for enhanced mid-range torque, offering 248 lb.-ft. at 5,200 rpm. A three-step Variable Induction System (VIS) improves engine "breathing," automatically adjusting the volume of the air pulled into the combustion chamber to create the optimal air-to-fuel mix under different engine load conditions. Dual Continuously Variable Valve Timing (CVVT) combined with a piston-cooling oil jet improves engine cooling efficiency, while engine components, including piston rings, piston skirts, valve tappets, timing chain guide and valve springs are all of a low-friction design. Finally, the new 3.3-liter V6 engine is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission tuned for balanced control, power and efficiency. Abundant Safety Features and Driver Technology Throughout the design and development process a high priority was placed on active and passive safety features as well as technology, resulting in one of the most technologically advanced vehicles in the segment. All Sedona models come standard with active safety features such as Electronic Stability Control (ESC)8, Traction Control System (TCS)8, Brake Assist System (BAS)8, Hill-start Assist Control (HAC)8, Electronic Brake Force Distribution (EBD)8 and Antilock Braking System (ABS)8. Additional technologies such as Roll Over Mitigation (ROM)8 and Cornering Brake Control (CBC)8 also were added as standard equipment for improved dynamic control and safety. New optional driver technology, including Vehicle Stability Management (VSM)8, Forward Collision Warning System (FCWS)9, Smart Cruise Control (SCC)9, Blind Spot Detection (BSD)9 and Rear Cross Traffic Alert9, help provide Sedona drivers with a more convenient and secure daily driving experience. Comfort & Convenience Features From front to back the Sedona offers numerous convenience features, including Kia's first application of the newest high-power (2.1 AMP) USB charging port and a 115-volt AC outlet to charge small electronics as well as a dual glove box that offers a cooled lower storage area. For easier parking and vehicle maneuvering, the Surround View Monitor8 provides real-time images from cameras placed around the vehicle. Smart Welcome, automatically illuminates the door handles and unfolds the power retractable side mirrors when a vehicle key fob is detected. A hands-free "Smart Tailgate" opens the rear lift gate automatically when the key fob is sensed for three seconds, and its programmable function can be tailored to the user's height preference.
  15. Kia has been an outlier in the minivan class with the Sedona. It never quite had the same status as the Chrysler Town & Country/Dodge Caravan, Honda Odyssey, and Toyota Sienna. But the company plans to change that with the introduction of the 2015 Sedona at the New York Auto Show this week. The 2015 Sedona's design reminds us the of the Nissan Quest with its upright lines and slab-slides. The front end has Kia's distinctive grille with new headlights with LEDs. An integrated spoiler on the tailgate is standard, while nineteen-inch alloy wheels are optional. Inside, the Sedona can be configured to carry seven or eight people. The seats can be equipped with heat, retractable leg rests, and Slide-n-Stow second-row seats that stack vertically against the back of the front seats. The dashboard resembles the Cadenza with a large touchscreen featuring Kia's UVO infotainment system and a simple control layout. Power will come from the 3.3L GDI V6 with 276 horsepower and 248 pound-feet of torque. This is paired with a six-speed automatic transmission. Kia says the Sedona will provide "improved driving dynamics" thanks in part to a chassis that is 36 percent stiffer than the outgoing model. The 2015 Sedona arrives at dealers sometime late in the fall. Source: Kia William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 ALL-NEW 2015 KIA SEDONA MAKES GLOBAL DEBUT IN CONJUNCTION WITH THE NEW YORK INTERNATIONAL AUTO SHOW * Completely Redesigned Midsize Multi-purpose Vehicle Raises the Bar in the Segment with Innovative Technology, Style and Added Safety Features * With its modern appearance and CUV-like cab-forward design, the all-new Sedona completes the restyling of Kia's entire U.S. lineup under the direction of Peter Schreyer * Available in seven- and eight-passenger configurations, the 2015 Sedona advances value to new levels of sophistication with advanced safety features and available driving-aid technologies, premium materials and amenities NEW YORK, April 14, 2014 – Set against the backdrop of one of the world's premier urban playgrounds, Kia Motors America (KMA) today took the wraps off the all-new 2015 Sedona midsize multi-purpose vehicle in New York City. As the final chapter in Kia's design-led transformation story – which began in 2009 and has seen a comprehensive makeover of Kia's entire model line under the direction of chief design officer Peter Schreyer – the all-new Sedona's CUV-like styling and proportions offer all of the functional convenience of the segment while defying its design limitations. In addition to innovative European-inspired design, the 2015 Sedona also delivers the exceptional interior volume buyers expect in the segment with ample passenger and cargo room and a quiet and comfortable cabin. Following the philosophy that has guided Kia's recent succession of highly successful redesigns, the Sedona advances value to new levels of sophistication with a host of segment-leading new technology and upscale features, all of which will be offered in a new premium trim level – SXL – which will be available when U.S. sales are scheduled to begin in the late third quarter or early fourth quarter of this year. Pricing will be announced closer to the Sedona's launch date. "Throughout the development process, our engineers in the U.S. and Korea focused on adding the element of desire to the all-new Sedona with improved driving dynamics and power and the incorporation of modern styling cues, premium materials and technology," said Orth Hedrick, vice president, product planning, KMA. "Combined with a host of active and passive safety features and technology, the completely redesigned Sedona retains the functionality the nameplate has always been known for, while rising to meet the diverse needs – and tastes – of today's consumers." Modern, Confident Exterior Transcending mundane functionality, the Sedona's wide stance exudes a modern, CUV-like exterior appearance highlighted by a front fascia and cab-forward design that project confidence and strength. The Sedona's muscular face and clean, smooth look is highlighted by a fully integrated version of Kia's signature grille and headlamps with LED positioning lights. The wheelbase is 1.6-inches longer than its predecessor, and the side profile, with its reduced front and rear overhangs, combines with the deeply swept windshield and available 19-inch alloy wheels to create a distinctive look. Meanwhile, the rear design layout, with LED taillights, integrated bumper guard and standard roof spoiler, presents a broad, stable bearing. Open, Relaxed, Configurable Interior Despite its overall width and height remaining virtually unchanged, the all-new Sedona provides more front shoulder room, greater leg room in the front, second and third rows, as well as a slightly higher hip-point, improving outward visibility for the driver. The horizontal design cues across the instrument panel create a greater sense of width, and the generous use of soft-touch materials adds to the all-new Sedona's premium ambiance. The Sedona's proportions provide flexible seating in both seven- and eight-passenger configurations and a multitude of storage options. The front center console is unique to the segment and allows for generous and cleverly convenient storage space between the front seats. Second row Slide-n-Stow tracked seating slides and folds upright to allow for "on-the-go" cargo hauling while eliminating the hassle that comes with removing heavy and cumbersome middle seats. The all-new Sedona also offers the choice of second row "First Class" lounge seating that can be positioned rearward for astonishing legroom and provides retractable lower leg rests. And while some configurations feature segment-unique second-row seat cushion heaters for added comfort, all 2015 Sedona models offer a third-row that provides the convenience of a split folding 60/40 in-floor retractable design. The Sedona also is the only vehicle in the segment outfitted with standard YES Essentials™ fabric technology to provide anti-microbial protection from spills, anti-static protection from irritating electrical shocks as well as stain-repelling and stain-releasing fabric characteristics appreciated by anyone who leads an active lifestyle. The Sedona's sophisticated interior design theme is brought to life with a modern color palette featuring solid or two-tone color options in beige, gray and burgundy for a warm and inviting atmosphere. The top-line SXL trim features standard ultra-soft Nappa leather seating surfaces throughout the cabin, the same Chromium-free leather found in the K900 luxury sedan. Next-Generation UVO1 Building on the next-generation UVO Infotainment & Telematics system, the all-new Sedona will be the first Kia vehicle to offer four new eServices features: Geo-fencing, Speed Alert, Curfew Alert and Driving Score. Additionally, with the introduction of the Kia App store, select apps can be downloaded for free from iTunes®2 or Google Play3. The Kia app connector is now available for partnership with the content community, including Pandora®4, iHeart Radio and Yelp®5. Many more new technologies for comfort and convenience are featured in the new UVO system, including Siri "Eyes Free6" and Local Search – powered by Google – for finding locations, addresses and points of interest. Sirius XM Travel Link7, offering access to traffic, weather, fuel prices, sports scores, stock information and movie times, makes the Sedona the perfect companion for those who live their lives on the road with family and friends. Driving Dynamics and Safety The 2015 Sedona is built on an all-new chassis with static torsional stiffness that is 36-percent greater than its closest segment competitor. The body is 76 percent Ultra High Strength Steel (press hardened) or High Strength Steel, which provides exceptional rigidity, durability and collision protection in a lightweight design. For enhanced roof strength, the Sedona has been engineered with reinforced pillars that distribute impact loads with ultra-high-strength steel tubes that run inside the A-pillars. Extensive use of adhesives and large diameter welds also add to Sedona's overall structural integrity and strength. Together with Kia's patented technology, the 2015 Sedona is targeted to earn the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's (NHTSA) 5-Star overall vehicle safety rating. The rigid and durable chassis provides a solid base for road-trip readiness. The 2015 Sedona utilizes Amplitude Selected Dampers (ASD) to strike an optimal balance of ride comfort and handling. The platform also has revised rear cross-member bushings, an isolated rear sub-frame with longer trailing arms and added rear strut reinforcement, all of which combine for improved dynamic ride characteristics. Additionally, the 2015 Sedona is expected to be among the quietest in the segment thanks to wheel-house padding, double seal sliding doors and an expanded use of sound-deadening foam in the engine compartment, reducing noise and perceived harshness over rough pavement. Under the hood, a new Lambda Gasoline Direct Injection (GDI) 3.3-liter V6 engine replaces the 3.5-liter V6 found in the previous generation Sedona. The 3.3-liter engine, which is also found in the Sorento CUV and Cadenza premium sedan, delivers more power than its predecessor, boasting 276 horsepower at 6,000 rpm, and it has been tuned for enhanced mid-range torque, offering 248 lb.-ft. at 5,200 rpm. A three-step Variable Induction System (VIS) improves engine "breathing," automatically adjusting the volume of the air pulled into the combustion chamber to create the optimal air-to-fuel mix under different engine load conditions. Dual Continuously Variable Valve Timing (CVVT) combined with a piston-cooling oil jet improves engine cooling efficiency, while engine components, including piston rings, piston skirts, valve tappets, timing chain guide and valve springs are all of a low-friction design. Finally, the new 3.3-liter V6 engine is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission tuned for balanced control, power and efficiency. Abundant Safety Features and Driver Technology Throughout the design and development process a high priority was placed on active and passive safety features as well as technology, resulting in one of the most technologically advanced vehicles in the segment. All Sedona models come standard with active safety features such as Electronic Stability Control (ESC)8, Traction Control System (TCS)8, Brake Assist System (BAS)8, Hill-start Assist Control (HAC)8, Electronic Brake Force Distribution (EBD)8 and Antilock Braking System (ABS)8. Additional technologies such as Roll Over Mitigation (ROM)8 and Cornering Brake Control (CBC)8 also were added as standard equipment for improved dynamic control and safety. New optional driver technology, including Vehicle Stability Management (VSM)8, Forward Collision Warning System (FCWS)9, Smart Cruise Control (SCC)9, Blind Spot Detection (BSD)9 and Rear Cross Traffic Alert9, help provide Sedona drivers with a more convenient and secure daily driving experience. Comfort & Convenience Features From front to back the Sedona offers numerous convenience features, including Kia's first application of the newest high-power (2.1 AMP) USB charging port and a 115-volt AC outlet to charge small electronics as well as a dual glove box that offers a cooled lower storage area. For easier parking and vehicle maneuvering, the Surround View Monitor8 provides real-time images from cameras placed around the vehicle. Smart Welcome, automatically illuminates the door handles and unfolds the power retractable side mirrors when a vehicle key fob is detected. A hands-free "Smart Tailgate" opens the rear lift gate automatically when the key fob is sensed for three seconds, and its programmable function can be tailored to the user's height preference. View full article
  16. Land Rover has seen the future and has decided to show their findings in the Discovery Vision Concept, which was revealed last night in New York City. The Discovery Vision "is a vision into the future of Land Rover's new family of leisure vehicles." It also marks the return of the Discovery nameplate to the U.S. Styling wise, the Discovery Vision is taking some cues from the Range Rover family with a silhouette that is much more futuristic and sportier than the current LR4. Design cues to take note of are the rounded front end, laser-powered headlights, a rising character line along handle-less doors, and twenty-three inch wheels. For the interior, the Discovery Vision comes with seating for seven people and can be folded via a touchscreen in the front. Speaking of touchscreens, the Discovery Vision comes loaded with them. There are two touchscreens on the steering wheel for the driver to control certain functions and two touchscreens on the centerstack. On the technology front, Land Rover has gone a bit mad. For starters, the foglights can emit infrared lasers to scan the terrain. This information is used create a map and is displayed on the instrument cluster for the driver to help the navigate. Then there is the trick where the Discovery Vision can make its hood appear transparent to improve driver confidence. This is done with cameras mounted under the grille which provide video of the terrain and the heads-up display system which can overlay the video on the hood in the driver's line of sight, thus pulling off a clever illusion. Finally, there is Remote Control Drive which as the name suggests, makes the Discovery Vision into a RC car. The system works by the driver uses a smartphone or tablet, connected to the vehicle via the built-in wireless network, to drive it slowly over short distances. While we're not sure how much of the tech will make it into the next-generation Discovery, expect a lot the design come when the production model is introduced in the next couple of years. Source: Land Rover Press Release is on Page 2 LAND ROVER DISCOVERY VISION CONCEPT DISCOVERY: A NEW BEGINNING In the 25 years since its launch, the Land Rover Discovery has carved an enviable reputation for itself – from deserts, jungles and barren peaks, where its unrivalled capability sees it through the harshest terrain, to cities and country tracks worldwide, where its distinctive blend of spacious design and innovative versatility have made it a global success, winning numerous awards and clocking up impressive sales figures. The Discovery shaped the 4x4 leisure segment and, over the course of a generation, became synonymous with it. Always a trend-setting pioneer, the Discovery is now on a journey of transformation and is set to change the face of the next generation too. From 2015 onwards, the Discovery nameplate will be borne by not just a single model but a distinct range of vehicles that symbolize the essence of the premium, lifestyle-orientated SUV: modern, versatile, practical and desirable, with the unmistakable DNA of Land Rover at its core. As Range Rover has done in the luxury SUV sector, the Discovery nameplate will come to redefine its territory in the leisure category. With the best designed and most premium, practical, versatile vehicles in their class, the future Discovery range is set to fundamentally enhance the way drivers around the world take on the adventure of modern life. DISCOVERY VISION CONCEPT: DESIGNING THE FUTURE The Discovery Concept is a vision into the future of Land Rover's new family of leisure vehicles. It is a vision of a premium and thoroughly modern lifestyle vehicle – a highly desirable interpretation of our well established Discovery nameplate, with a strong focus on relevant versatility and compelling design. This will truly resonate with customers while respecting the established values of Discovery's unique heritage. With its optimised volume and proportions, dramatic silhouette and overall modernity inside and out, this concept is a radical departure from Discovery as we know it – and yet, its unique DNA is evident, with the stepped roof, alpine lights, command driving position and stadium seating all working in harmony to create a vehicle that acknowledges its roots, whilst firmly looking forward. Though a full-size SUV, the Discovery Vision Concept looks remarkably compact. This has been achieved through a combination of well-considered design elements such as wrap-around headlamps and tail lamps and the short front and rear overhangs serving to reduce the visual length. The headlamps utilise advanced laser technology to generate incredibly bright, far-reaching beams of light, paired with LED daytime running lights. Slim foglamps on either side of the prominent undershield are capable of emitting both infrared and coloured lasers, which assist in the Laser Terrain Scanning and Laser Referencing functions. In profile, the Discovery Vision Concept's raised beltline alludes to the incredible levels of space available inside. The doors are operated by gesture control, and, with no need for handles, the resulting clean, beautifully crafted surfaces and the flush, tight gaps between their interfaces further impart a sense of modernity. The slim, aerodynamic wing mirrors have embedded cameras, which augment the view of the driver through the windows, providing an extended field of vision while parking and reversing. Just below the doors, sill steps on either side automatically deploy to facilitate occupants' entry and exit, with LED lighting to illuminate the ground being stepped onto. The body coloured C-pillar, the stepped roof flowing into the alpine lights and the distinctive asymmetrical graphic element on the rear number plate also references its Discovery heritage. The Discovery Concept takes a thoroughly modern view but also acknowledges the need to evolve specific Discovery elements such as the split tailgate which has evolved on the Discovery concept to a highly flexible new tailgate design incorporating a social seat system in the vehicle's loadspace area. The gesture-controlled, electrically powered, single-piece tailgate is paired with an event platform, which electrically deploys from within the rear bumper, just above the rear undershield. The Vision Concept has sleek horizontal tail lamps and vertical foglamps, and as at the front, the rear window also features hidden wipers, neatly concealed under the rear spoiler. The concept car, which is painted in a Tribeca Grey finish, is fitted with bespoke 23-inch split-five-spoke Aero Viper alloy wheels with a bright silver turned finish. INTERIOR: INNOVATION AND VERSATILITY COMBINED The interior of the Discovery Vision Concept is a dynamic blend of form, colour and material, striking in its clean, modern visual simplicity. It has been carefully crafted to deliver enormous levels of spaciousness and an open, airy feel for all occupants, while still cocooning them in an environment that feels cosy and secure. With a brief to create the ultimate leisure space, Land Rover's design team has created a warm and welcoming interior, crafted in Nimbus and Navy premium leather, open pore grey wood veneer and polished and brushed aluminium finishes. The large glasshouse and panoramic roof let in plenty of light and afford clear views out, while the vehicle's high beltline creates a feeling of security. The Discovery Vision Concept seats seven full-size adults in great comfort, in a 2+3+2 layout across three rows. Every passenger is catered for equally, with plenty of headroom and legroom and access to storage, infotainment and accessories. The Discovery Vision Concept maintains the command driving position, within an airy cockpit that gives excellent visibility. Flowing lines and warmly textured materials tastefully complement clean, futuristic technology interfaces. The steering wheel incorporates two small OLED touchscreens to operate the infotainment system, and with turn signals and headlamp functions operated by gesture control, indicator stalks are absent, creating more visual space and less clutter around the driver. This also affords a clear view of the instrument cluster, which features a high-definition screen with a 3-million-pixel resolution for incredibly vivid, sharp imagery. The top of the fascia has a leather-wrapped aerofoil-shaped structure for a light, minimalist appearance. The swooping form of the fascia's central 'arm' encases two high-resolution touchscreens, which display the vehicle's system menus. The lower touchscreen flips up to reveal a storage binnacle with an induction pad for easy, cable-free recharging of smartphones. Further down along the console is a rotary gearshift control, which deploys and rises into the driver's hand as it approaches, and a secondary rotary which controls functions such as Terrain Response and Tow Assist. This secondary rotary can detached and taken out of the vehicle to operate Remote Control Drive. The seats have a sculpted, wrap-around effect, with bolstered leather wrapped around the frame for a minimalist yet solid structural appearance. The third-row seats get their own colour: Navy leather, in contrast to the other five seats, which are made from Nimbus leather. This visual separation helps create a personalised ambience for the third-row passengers. All seven seats feature Sky Blue contrast stitching. Built to take the demands of family life, the Discovery Vision Concept's cabin is finished in Foglizzo H20w, an innovative premium leather that is specially treated to make it completely washable, while the Nubuck inserts on the first- and second-row seats feature Foglizzo H203 treatment that makes them totally oil- and water-repellent, to protect against spills. Soft and beautiful, yet highly durable, the Foglizzo leather is very easily washed and cleaned, making it the perfect solution for an uncompromisingly active lifestyle. A SkyLight cabin light is incorporated into the structural cross-beam that spans the panoramic roof. Providing an even, warm spread of light, it can be activated and brightened or dimmed with a gesture. Gentle orange lighting in the doors and floors further enhances the ambience of the interior. INNOVATIVE VERSATILITY Versatility and practicality have always been fundamental aspects of the Discovery, and every facet of the Discovery Vision Concept's carefully considered design reflects a sense of thoughtful innovation. The Discovery Vision Concept's reconfigurable seating system perfectly represents this philosophy. The seats in the second and third rows are able to slide backwards and forwards fully, both independently and as a complete row, fitting flush with the seat ahead or behind them ('theatre-fold'). The seat can also fold down flat, with the seatback effectively becoming a table surface ('table-fold'). Thus, with varying combinations of theatre-fold and table-fold seats, it is possible to create differing configurations for convenience and comfort – all easily selected from the menu on the console touchscreen. Possible configurations include: • 7-seat mode: Standard seating for seven adults in three rows. • 6-seat-mode: Second row middle seat in table-fold; more convenience for the second-row outboard-seat passengers. • 5-seat mode: Both second-row outboard seats in table-fold (more convenience for the middle-seat passenger) or both third-row seats in theatre-fold with the second row (plenty of extra load space). • 4-seat, or 'limousine' mode: Second row outboard seats in full theatre-fold with the front seats, and the second row middle seat in table-fold. Two passengers seated in the third row seats enjoy huge amounts of legroom. In addition, the back of each seat not only contains a gesture-controlled infotainment screen with a wide variety of functions, but also packs numerous convenience features such as integrated pop-out coat hangers, fold-out tray tables and tablet docking ports. With a nod to the original Discovery and its Conran Design-inspired cubby-bag which clipped into the centre console, the Discovery Vision Concept features detachable travel luggage smartly integrated into the doors, so that passengers can save having to pack and carry a suitcase and load it into the boot. The high-quality hard cases clip straight into the insides of the doors, and once detached, can be taken away from the vehicle like a regular stroller bag, as they have wheels in their bases and extendable handles. Accessories such as picnic blankets, sleeping blankets and cushions, are designed to enhance leisure activities. They are handcrafted by Sula and made with material woven by Harris Tweed, exuding British quality and workmanship. The Discovery Vision Concept's social seating platform is another elegant manifestation of the Land Rover designers' mission to maximise versatility. The social seat is deployed from under the boot floor. When initially extended, it forms a platform for activity. When further folded out, it becomes a bench that can be used by all to sit on. Used in conjunction with the powered single-piece tailgate, which opens up fully to serve as a canopy, and the deployable event platform, which can serve as a viewing platform to stand on, the social seating system supports a variety of outdoor leisure activities, from picnics and watching the polo to changing kids' muddy rugby kit. With conversion attachments, the sill step can also be used as a mounted bike/ski rack when the vehicle is on the move. PIONEERING TECHNOLOGY The Discovery Vision Concept is packed full of pioneering technology that is being developed by Jaguar Land Rover: technology of incredible intelligence and capability, that makes the driver and passenger experience alike safer, smarter, more connected and more engaging than ever. Laser headlamps The Discovery Vision Concept's headlamps feature laser diodes in combination with LED running lights. Laser light is the next generation of automotive lighting technology. These lights utilise laser-activated phosphor projection to emit a very bright and even beam of pure white light. The power of the laser light beam adds a distance of over 300 metres to the range of the headlight, and the quality of the light itself is closer to daylight – smooth and clean, with no patchiness or speckling – than any other type of artificial light, all of which makes for excellent and greatly enhanced visibility on the road. Further, Jaguar Land Rover's intelligent dipping and tracking technology uses hi-definition cameras to automatically detect and assess oncoming traffic, instantly dipping the relevant parts of the light beam to avoid glare to other road users, and adjusting the rest of the beam to maintain perfect visibility in all driving situations. By immensely boosting driver confidence and decreasing fatigue, reducing glare and avoiding the need to take one's hands off the wheel to operate the dip function, laser headlamps aim to make a huge difference to the automotive landscape by vastly increasing road safety. Additionally, laser lights have the added advantage of also being very compact – a tenth the size of LEDs – which opens up numerous design and engineering possibilities. Smart Glass & Passenger HMI The Discovery Vision Concept also previews a truly futuristic technology that will radically transform the user experience for drivers and passengers alike: smart glass. This state-of-the-art glass is capable of displaying imagery, like a computer screen – but is otherwise entirely transparent, like regular glass. Smart glass is used in the entire glasshouse of the Discovery Vision Concept – in all the windows, the panoramic roof and, allied to Head-Up Display (HUD) technology, in the windscreen – and opens up a world of exciting possibilities. Augmented reality involves overlaying real-time information onto the view of the surroundings as seen through the windows by the driver or passengers. The smart glass in the window can work in conjunction with eye-tracking sensors and the vehicle's sat-nav system to identify that, for instance, a passing landmark is being observed by one of the vehicle's passengers – and displays relevant information, such as navigation or tourist data, to that passenger. That information can then be swiped from the window directly into a passenger's seatback infotainment screen, or – adding in the functionality of passengers' personal devices – even to a docked tablet or smartphone. The image projection properties of smart glass also enhance the view through the windows; for instance, bay parking, reversing around corners or parking a trailer is made easier by projecting camera feeds onto the driver's view out of the smart-glass window, broadening the field of vision. The graphical properties of smart glass enhance ambience and privacy controls; the window can be dimmed with infinite gradation or completely blacked out with the swipe of a finger, while the panoramic roof also has the option of displaying screensaver-style 'mood screens'. From a soothing starry night sky as you drive through a city to a clear blue summer sky on a winter's evening – the smart glass on the panoramic roof lets you set the mood. The Discovery Vision Concept emphasises a great infotainment experience for all passengers. Individual 10-inch high-resolution screens are fitted into four of the seat backs, with the console screens serving the first-row right-hand-side and second-row middle passengers. Each passenger has not only full video and internet access via the vehicle's secure in-car WiFi network and the ability to link up to the smart-glass data from the windows, but can also, thanks to embedded cameras above each screen, video-call any other passenger seated in the Discovery Vision Concept, and talk in a natural face-to-face manner without having to twist rearward. The tablet dock integrated into the seatback folding trays also allows personal smartphones and tablets to be hooked up to the vehicle's system. The screens can be operated with hand gestures – for instance, swiping a hand left or right to change the mode, or rotating a finger to increase or decrease the volume. Gesture Control A number of other functions in the Discovery Vision Concept are also controlled by intuitive gestures, which is the next generation of HMI technology. Jaguar Land Rover's researchers have developed carefully calibrated motion sensors that precisely recognise designated hand or finger movements, thus eliminating the chance of unintentional triggering of functions. In addition to the passenger infotainment systems, gestures open and close the vehicle's doors and tailgate, operate the lights and turn signals, activate the rotary gearshift control, and dim and brighten the cabin lighting. UNSURPASSED ALL-TERRAIN CAPABILITY The Discovery, beloved of rutted roads and green lanes across the world, has a proud history of successfully tackling gruelling overland expeditions – most recently, the Journey of Discovery in 2012, where the one-millionth Discovery to be built was driven 8,000 miles from Birmingham to Beijing, China. The Discovery Vision Concept carries forward this tradition: from its design and build to the capability of its technical systems, it is not just every inch a Land Rover, but has the most advanced capability of any Land Rover, ever. The Discovery Vision Concept shows the direction of cutting-edge all-terrain technologies developed by Land Rover, which, from motorways to mountaintops, deliver the best functionality whatever the terrain. Remote Control Drive This feature enables the driver to manoeuvre the car at very low speed while not actually seated inside it, via the removable secondary rotary on the centre console, as well as via a smartphone or tablet. Applications include: • extreme off-roading, where it is sometimes safer and easier to inch the vehicle over obstacles from an outside vantage point, • coupling to a trailer, or • driving through gates, where the driver can avoid repeatedly getting in and out of the vehicle by simply opening the gate and letting the vehicle drive through via Remote Control Drive, before shutting the gate and re-entering the vehicle. Remote Control Drive has a simple, easy-to-use interface, encrypted access and operation only via the vehicle's localised WiFi, putting the power of autonomous vehicle control safely and securely in the driver's hands. Laser Terrain Scanning Another enhancement to the driver's capability is Laser Terrain Scanning. The Discovery Vision Concept's foglamps are capable of emitting infrared lasers, and these are used to scan the ground ahead, map the terrain and display the mapped imagery on the hi-definition cluster screen, providing the driver a vital visual reference and helping him understand the lay of the land while driving in challenging off-road conditions. Laser Referencing Both on and off the road, the Discovery Vision Concept's laser technology capability offers an additional resource: Laser Referencing. Here, the laser light is tuned to specific colours in the visible spectrum and used to project visible images onto the road. This has numerous useful applications, including projecting warning triangles onto the tarmac behind the car for other motorists to see in the event of a stoppage, or projecting reference points onto roads, walls or any terrain, in order to help the driver to judge tight gaps and to park or drive in congested spaces. Transparent Bonnet Another way of providing the driver with enhanced visibility and a greater understanding of the terrain is Land Rover's innovative Transparent Bonnet system. Cameras under the vehicle's grille send video of the terrain being traversed, projecting it to the Head-Up Display in the windscreen. By overlaying the imagery through the driver's line of sight on the HUD covering the bonnet area, the system effectively creates a 'see-through' bonnet view of the terrain and the direction of the front wheels, thus improving visibility and enhancing driver confidence. Terrain Response The next generation of Land Rover's iconic multi-mode terrain-tackling system links up and networks all these advanced capability technologies, as well as Hill Descent Control, wet grass traction control, auto hi/lo, Low Speed Steering Assist and Wade Aid. Terrain Response not only analyses the type of terrain being traversed – snow, ice, mud, grass, water, rocks, ruts, tarmac, gravel, sand, inclines and so on – but also proactively anticipates upcoming terrain via Laser Terrain Scanning and forward-facing camera sensors, and instantly engages the appropriate system to best respond to that type of terrain and situation. Wade Aid is a new sensory wading system that uses lasers to judge the depth of water ahead before the vehicle even begins to wade, and informs the driver of the feasibility of the intended wading manoeuvre. The Discovery Vision Concept's all-terrain capability enables differing levels of driving enhancement: • All Terrain Progress Control: A low-speed all-terrain cruise control that vectors torque to enable semi-autonomous off-road driving at a steady speed. • All Terrain Coach: for the more manually inclined. Here, the driver chooses from a menu the type of terrain being traversed and then gets a recommendation as to which off-road system ought to be activated for the best response. • Enhanced All Terrain Coach: marks a specific route across a terrain map rendered on the console display via Terrain Scanning, and suggests the appropriate systems to help navigate it step-by-step. The systems on the Discovery Vision Concept offer multiple levels of autonomy, so that the driver always has the choice to be engaged and involved with the terrain just as much as desired or needed. By enabling better vision and decision-making, they aim to provide the driver with more of the right information at the right time, helping progress through seemingly impassable terrain, and leading to more confidence, security and enjoyment on any terrain.
  17. Land Rover has seen the future and has decided to show their findings in the Discovery Vision Concept, which was revealed last night in New York City. The Discovery Vision "is a vision into the future of Land Rover's new family of leisure vehicles." It also marks the return of the Discovery nameplate to the U.S. Styling wise, the Discovery Vision is taking some cues from the Range Rover family with a silhouette that is much more futuristic and sportier than the current LR4. Design cues to take note of are the rounded front end, laser-powered headlights, a rising character line along handle-less doors, and twenty-three inch wheels. For the interior, the Discovery Vision comes with seating for seven people and can be folded via a touchscreen in the front. Speaking of touchscreens, the Discovery Vision comes loaded with them. There are two touchscreens on the steering wheel for the driver to control certain functions and two touchscreens on the centerstack. On the technology front, Land Rover has gone a bit mad. For starters, the foglights can emit infrared lasers to scan the terrain. This information is used create a map and is displayed on the instrument cluster for the driver to help the navigate. Then there is the trick where the Discovery Vision can make its hood appear transparent to improve driver confidence. This is done with cameras mounted under the grille which provide video of the terrain and the heads-up display system which can overlay the video on the hood in the driver's line of sight, thus pulling off a clever illusion. Finally, there is Remote Control Drive which as the name suggests, makes the Discovery Vision into a RC car. The system works by the driver uses a smartphone or tablet, connected to the vehicle via the built-in wireless network, to drive it slowly over short distances. While we're not sure how much of the tech will make it into the next-generation Discovery, expect a lot the design come when the production model is introduced in the next couple of years. Source: Land Rover Press Release is on Page 2 LAND ROVER DISCOVERY VISION CONCEPT DISCOVERY: A NEW BEGINNING In the 25 years since its launch, the Land Rover Discovery has carved an enviable reputation for itself – from deserts, jungles and barren peaks, where its unrivalled capability sees it through the harshest terrain, to cities and country tracks worldwide, where its distinctive blend of spacious design and innovative versatility have made it a global success, winning numerous awards and clocking up impressive sales figures. The Discovery shaped the 4x4 leisure segment and, over the course of a generation, became synonymous with it. Always a trend-setting pioneer, the Discovery is now on a journey of transformation and is set to change the face of the next generation too. From 2015 onwards, the Discovery nameplate will be borne by not just a single model but a distinct range of vehicles that symbolize the essence of the premium, lifestyle-orientated SUV: modern, versatile, practical and desirable, with the unmistakable DNA of Land Rover at its core. As Range Rover has done in the luxury SUV sector, the Discovery nameplate will come to redefine its territory in the leisure category. With the best designed and most premium, practical, versatile vehicles in their class, the future Discovery range is set to fundamentally enhance the way drivers around the world take on the adventure of modern life. DISCOVERY VISION CONCEPT: DESIGNING THE FUTURE The Discovery Concept is a vision into the future of Land Rover's new family of leisure vehicles. It is a vision of a premium and thoroughly modern lifestyle vehicle – a highly desirable interpretation of our well established Discovery nameplate, with a strong focus on relevant versatility and compelling design. This will truly resonate with customers while respecting the established values of Discovery's unique heritage. With its optimised volume and proportions, dramatic silhouette and overall modernity inside and out, this concept is a radical departure from Discovery as we know it – and yet, its unique DNA is evident, with the stepped roof, alpine lights, command driving position and stadium seating all working in harmony to create a vehicle that acknowledges its roots, whilst firmly looking forward. Though a full-size SUV, the Discovery Vision Concept looks remarkably compact. This has been achieved through a combination of well-considered design elements such as wrap-around headlamps and tail lamps and the short front and rear overhangs serving to reduce the visual length. The headlamps utilise advanced laser technology to generate incredibly bright, far-reaching beams of light, paired with LED daytime running lights. Slim foglamps on either side of the prominent undershield are capable of emitting both infrared and coloured lasers, which assist in the Laser Terrain Scanning and Laser Referencing functions. In profile, the Discovery Vision Concept's raised beltline alludes to the incredible levels of space available inside. The doors are operated by gesture control, and, with no need for handles, the resulting clean, beautifully crafted surfaces and the flush, tight gaps between their interfaces further impart a sense of modernity. The slim, aerodynamic wing mirrors have embedded cameras, which augment the view of the driver through the windows, providing an extended field of vision while parking and reversing. Just below the doors, sill steps on either side automatically deploy to facilitate occupants' entry and exit, with LED lighting to illuminate the ground being stepped onto. The body coloured C-pillar, the stepped roof flowing into the alpine lights and the distinctive asymmetrical graphic element on the rear number plate also references its Discovery heritage. The Discovery Concept takes a thoroughly modern view but also acknowledges the need to evolve specific Discovery elements such as the split tailgate which has evolved on the Discovery concept to a highly flexible new tailgate design incorporating a social seat system in the vehicle's loadspace area. The gesture-controlled, electrically powered, single-piece tailgate is paired with an event platform, which electrically deploys from within the rear bumper, just above the rear undershield. The Vision Concept has sleek horizontal tail lamps and vertical foglamps, and as at the front, the rear window also features hidden wipers, neatly concealed under the rear spoiler. The concept car, which is painted in a Tribeca Grey finish, is fitted with bespoke 23-inch split-five-spoke Aero Viper alloy wheels with a bright silver turned finish. INTERIOR: INNOVATION AND VERSATILITY COMBINED The interior of the Discovery Vision Concept is a dynamic blend of form, colour and material, striking in its clean, modern visual simplicity. It has been carefully crafted to deliver enormous levels of spaciousness and an open, airy feel for all occupants, while still cocooning them in an environment that feels cosy and secure. With a brief to create the ultimate leisure space, Land Rover's design team has created a warm and welcoming interior, crafted in Nimbus and Navy premium leather, open pore grey wood veneer and polished and brushed aluminium finishes. The large glasshouse and panoramic roof let in plenty of light and afford clear views out, while the vehicle's high beltline creates a feeling of security. The Discovery Vision Concept seats seven full-size adults in great comfort, in a 2+3+2 layout across three rows. Every passenger is catered for equally, with plenty of headroom and legroom and access to storage, infotainment and accessories. The Discovery Vision Concept maintains the command driving position, within an airy cockpit that gives excellent visibility. Flowing lines and warmly textured materials tastefully complement clean, futuristic technology interfaces. The steering wheel incorporates two small OLED touchscreens to operate the infotainment system, and with turn signals and headlamp functions operated by gesture control, indicator stalks are absent, creating more visual space and less clutter around the driver. This also affords a clear view of the instrument cluster, which features a high-definition screen with a 3-million-pixel resolution for incredibly vivid, sharp imagery. The top of the fascia has a leather-wrapped aerofoil-shaped structure for a light, minimalist appearance. The swooping form of the fascia's central 'arm' encases two high-resolution touchscreens, which display the vehicle's system menus. The lower touchscreen flips up to reveal a storage binnacle with an induction pad for easy, cable-free recharging of smartphones. Further down along the console is a rotary gearshift control, which deploys and rises into the driver's hand as it approaches, and a secondary rotary which controls functions such as Terrain Response and Tow Assist. This secondary rotary can detached and taken out of the vehicle to operate Remote Control Drive. The seats have a sculpted, wrap-around effect, with bolstered leather wrapped around the frame for a minimalist yet solid structural appearance. The third-row seats get their own colour: Navy leather, in contrast to the other five seats, which are made from Nimbus leather. This visual separation helps create a personalised ambience for the third-row passengers. All seven seats feature Sky Blue contrast stitching. Built to take the demands of family life, the Discovery Vision Concept's cabin is finished in Foglizzo H20w, an innovative premium leather that is specially treated to make it completely washable, while the Nubuck inserts on the first- and second-row seats feature Foglizzo H203 treatment that makes them totally oil- and water-repellent, to protect against spills. Soft and beautiful, yet highly durable, the Foglizzo leather is very easily washed and cleaned, making it the perfect solution for an uncompromisingly active lifestyle. A SkyLight cabin light is incorporated into the structural cross-beam that spans the panoramic roof. Providing an even, warm spread of light, it can be activated and brightened or dimmed with a gesture. Gentle orange lighting in the doors and floors further enhances the ambience of the interior. INNOVATIVE VERSATILITY Versatility and practicality have always been fundamental aspects of the Discovery, and every facet of the Discovery Vision Concept's carefully considered design reflects a sense of thoughtful innovation. The Discovery Vision Concept's reconfigurable seating system perfectly represents this philosophy. The seats in the second and third rows are able to slide backwards and forwards fully, both independently and as a complete row, fitting flush with the seat ahead or behind them ('theatre-fold'). The seat can also fold down flat, with the seatback effectively becoming a table surface ('table-fold'). Thus, with varying combinations of theatre-fold and table-fold seats, it is possible to create differing configurations for convenience and comfort – all easily selected from the menu on the console touchscreen. Possible configurations include: • 7-seat mode: Standard seating for seven adults in three rows. • 6-seat-mode: Second row middle seat in table-fold; more convenience for the second-row outboard-seat passengers. • 5-seat mode: Both second-row outboard seats in table-fold (more convenience for the middle-seat passenger) or both third-row seats in theatre-fold with the second row (plenty of extra load space). • 4-seat, or 'limousine' mode: Second row outboard seats in full theatre-fold with the front seats, and the second row middle seat in table-fold. Two passengers seated in the third row seats enjoy huge amounts of legroom. In addition, the back of each seat not only contains a gesture-controlled infotainment screen with a wide variety of functions, but also packs numerous convenience features such as integrated pop-out coat hangers, fold-out tray tables and tablet docking ports. With a nod to the original Discovery and its Conran Design-inspired cubby-bag which clipped into the centre console, the Discovery Vision Concept features detachable travel luggage smartly integrated into the doors, so that passengers can save having to pack and carry a suitcase and load it into the boot. The high-quality hard cases clip straight into the insides of the doors, and once detached, can be taken away from the vehicle like a regular stroller bag, as they have wheels in their bases and extendable handles. Accessories such as picnic blankets, sleeping blankets and cushions, are designed to enhance leisure activities. They are handcrafted by Sula and made with material woven by Harris Tweed, exuding British quality and workmanship. The Discovery Vision Concept's social seating platform is another elegant manifestation of the Land Rover designers' mission to maximise versatility. The social seat is deployed from under the boot floor. When initially extended, it forms a platform for activity. When further folded out, it becomes a bench that can be used by all to sit on. Used in conjunction with the powered single-piece tailgate, which opens up fully to serve as a canopy, and the deployable event platform, which can serve as a viewing platform to stand on, the social seating system supports a variety of outdoor leisure activities, from picnics and watching the polo to changing kids' muddy rugby kit. With conversion attachments, the sill step can also be used as a mounted bike/ski rack when the vehicle is on the move. PIONEERING TECHNOLOGY The Discovery Vision Concept is packed full of pioneering technology that is being developed by Jaguar Land Rover: technology of incredible intelligence and capability, that makes the driver and passenger experience alike safer, smarter, more connected and more engaging than ever. Laser headlamps The Discovery Vision Concept's headlamps feature laser diodes in combination with LED running lights. Laser light is the next generation of automotive lighting technology. These lights utilise laser-activated phosphor projection to emit a very bright and even beam of pure white light. The power of the laser light beam adds a distance of over 300 metres to the range of the headlight, and the quality of the light itself is closer to daylight – smooth and clean, with no patchiness or speckling – than any other type of artificial light, all of which makes for excellent and greatly enhanced visibility on the road. Further, Jaguar Land Rover's intelligent dipping and tracking technology uses hi-definition cameras to automatically detect and assess oncoming traffic, instantly dipping the relevant parts of the light beam to avoid glare to other road users, and adjusting the rest of the beam to maintain perfect visibility in all driving situations. By immensely boosting driver confidence and decreasing fatigue, reducing glare and avoiding the need to take one's hands off the wheel to operate the dip function, laser headlamps aim to make a huge difference to the automotive landscape by vastly increasing road safety. Additionally, laser lights have the added advantage of also being very compact – a tenth the size of LEDs – which opens up numerous design and engineering possibilities. Smart Glass & Passenger HMI The Discovery Vision Concept also previews a truly futuristic technology that will radically transform the user experience for drivers and passengers alike: smart glass. This state-of-the-art glass is capable of displaying imagery, like a computer screen – but is otherwise entirely transparent, like regular glass. Smart glass is used in the entire glasshouse of the Discovery Vision Concept – in all the windows, the panoramic roof and, allied to Head-Up Display (HUD) technology, in the windscreen – and opens up a world of exciting possibilities. Augmented reality involves overlaying real-time information onto the view of the surroundings as seen through the windows by the driver or passengers. The smart glass in the window can work in conjunction with eye-tracking sensors and the vehicle's sat-nav system to identify that, for instance, a passing landmark is being observed by one of the vehicle's passengers – and displays relevant information, such as navigation or tourist data, to that passenger. That information can then be swiped from the window directly into a passenger's seatback infotainment screen, or – adding in the functionality of passengers' personal devices – even to a docked tablet or smartphone. The image projection properties of smart glass also enhance the view through the windows; for instance, bay parking, reversing around corners or parking a trailer is made easier by projecting camera feeds onto the driver's view out of the smart-glass window, broadening the field of vision. The graphical properties of smart glass enhance ambience and privacy controls; the window can be dimmed with infinite gradation or completely blacked out with the swipe of a finger, while the panoramic roof also has the option of displaying screensaver-style 'mood screens'. From a soothing starry night sky as you drive through a city to a clear blue summer sky on a winter's evening – the smart glass on the panoramic roof lets you set the mood. The Discovery Vision Concept emphasises a great infotainment experience for all passengers. Individual 10-inch high-resolution screens are fitted into four of the seat backs, with the console screens serving the first-row right-hand-side and second-row middle passengers. Each passenger has not only full video and internet access via the vehicle's secure in-car WiFi network and the ability to link up to the smart-glass data from the windows, but can also, thanks to embedded cameras above each screen, video-call any other passenger seated in the Discovery Vision Concept, and talk in a natural face-to-face manner without having to twist rearward. The tablet dock integrated into the seatback folding trays also allows personal smartphones and tablets to be hooked up to the vehicle's system. The screens can be operated with hand gestures – for instance, swiping a hand left or right to change the mode, or rotating a finger to increase or decrease the volume. Gesture Control A number of other functions in the Discovery Vision Concept are also controlled by intuitive gestures, which is the next generation of HMI technology. Jaguar Land Rover's researchers have developed carefully calibrated motion sensors that precisely recognise designated hand or finger movements, thus eliminating the chance of unintentional triggering of functions. In addition to the passenger infotainment systems, gestures open and close the vehicle's doors and tailgate, operate the lights and turn signals, activate the rotary gearshift control, and dim and brighten the cabin lighting. UNSURPASSED ALL-TERRAIN CAPABILITY The Discovery, beloved of rutted roads and green lanes across the world, has a proud history of successfully tackling gruelling overland expeditions – most recently, the Journey of Discovery in 2012, where the one-millionth Discovery to be built was driven 8,000 miles from Birmingham to Beijing, China. The Discovery Vision Concept carries forward this tradition: from its design and build to the capability of its technical systems, it is not just every inch a Land Rover, but has the most advanced capability of any Land Rover, ever. The Discovery Vision Concept shows the direction of cutting-edge all-terrain technologies developed by Land Rover, which, from motorways to mountaintops, deliver the best functionality whatever the terrain. Remote Control Drive This feature enables the driver to manoeuvre the car at very low speed while not actually seated inside it, via the removable secondary rotary on the centre console, as well as via a smartphone or tablet. Applications include: • extreme off-roading, where it is sometimes safer and easier to inch the vehicle over obstacles from an outside vantage point, • coupling to a trailer, or • driving through gates, where the driver can avoid repeatedly getting in and out of the vehicle by simply opening the gate and letting the vehicle drive through via Remote Control Drive, before shutting the gate and re-entering the vehicle. Remote Control Drive has a simple, easy-to-use interface, encrypted access and operation only via the vehicle's localised WiFi, putting the power of autonomous vehicle control safely and securely in the driver's hands. Laser Terrain Scanning Another enhancement to the driver's capability is Laser Terrain Scanning. The Discovery Vision Concept's foglamps are capable of emitting infrared lasers, and these are used to scan the ground ahead, map the terrain and display the mapped imagery on the hi-definition cluster screen, providing the driver a vital visual reference and helping him understand the lay of the land while driving in challenging off-road conditions. Laser Referencing Both on and off the road, the Discovery Vision Concept's laser technology capability offers an additional resource: Laser Referencing. Here, the laser light is tuned to specific colours in the visible spectrum and used to project visible images onto the road. This has numerous useful applications, including projecting warning triangles onto the tarmac behind the car for other motorists to see in the event of a stoppage, or projecting reference points onto roads, walls or any terrain, in order to help the driver to judge tight gaps and to park or drive in congested spaces. Transparent Bonnet Another way of providing the driver with enhanced visibility and a greater understanding of the terrain is Land Rover's innovative Transparent Bonnet system. Cameras under the vehicle's grille send video of the terrain being traversed, projecting it to the Head-Up Display in the windscreen. By overlaying the imagery through the driver's line of sight on the HUD covering the bonnet area, the system effectively creates a 'see-through' bonnet view of the terrain and the direction of the front wheels, thus improving visibility and enhancing driver confidence. Terrain Response The next generation of Land Rover's iconic multi-mode terrain-tackling system links up and networks all these advanced capability technologies, as well as Hill Descent Control, wet grass traction control, auto hi/lo, Low Speed Steering Assist and Wade Aid. Terrain Response not only analyses the type of terrain being traversed – snow, ice, mud, grass, water, rocks, ruts, tarmac, gravel, sand, inclines and so on – but also proactively anticipates upcoming terrain via Laser Terrain Scanning and forward-facing camera sensors, and instantly engages the appropriate system to best respond to that type of terrain and situation. Wade Aid is a new sensory wading system that uses lasers to judge the depth of water ahead before the vehicle even begins to wade, and informs the driver of the feasibility of the intended wading manoeuvre. The Discovery Vision Concept's all-terrain capability enables differing levels of driving enhancement: • All Terrain Progress Control: A low-speed all-terrain cruise control that vectors torque to enable semi-autonomous off-road driving at a steady speed. • All Terrain Coach: for the more manually inclined. Here, the driver chooses from a menu the type of terrain being traversed and then gets a recommendation as to which off-road system ought to be activated for the best response. • Enhanced All Terrain Coach: marks a specific route across a terrain map rendered on the console display via Terrain Scanning, and suggests the appropriate systems to help navigate it step-by-step. The systems on the Discovery Vision Concept offer multiple levels of autonomy, so that the driver always has the choice to be engaged and involved with the terrain just as much as desired or needed. By enabling better vision and decision-making, they aim to provide the driver with more of the right information at the right time, helping progress through seemingly impassable terrain, and leading to more confidence, security and enjoyment on any terrain. View full article
  18. Alongside the Golf SportWagen Concept, Volkswagen will also being showing off the 2015 Jetta which appears to have been ordered with a side of light refresh. The 2015 Jetta changes start with the exterior. Volkswagen swapped the front clip for a new one that has grille similar to the CC and a set of optional Xenon headlights with LEDs. Other exterior changes focused on improving the aero of the model with a new trunk lid and redesigned rain gutters. Moving inside, the Jetta gets some modest improvements with a new color multifunction display becoming an option on certain models. There's also new fabrics and trim pieces. Under the hood lies one of the biggest changes. Volkswagen is introducing a new 2.0L TDI four-cylinder with 150 horsepower and 236 pounds-feet of torque. When equipped with the manual transmission, Volkswagen says the TDI can achieve 32 City/45 Highway/37 Combined. The rest of the engine lineup which includes the 2.0L, 1.8T, and Hybrid carries over for 2015. The 2015 model also gains a smattering of safety equipment such as adaptive front lighting, blind spot detection, radar-based rear cross-traffic alert, and frontal collision warning. The 2015 Jetta arrives at dealers this fall. Source: Volkswagen William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 2015 VOLKSWAGEN JETTA MAKES GLOBAL DEBUT AT THE NEW YORK INTERNATIONAL AUTO SHOW New styling, driver assistance systems, improved fuel efficiency, and enhanced content head the updates for the 2015 model year New front, rear, and interior styling enhances Jetta’s clean and timeless design New available driver assistance systems: Blind Spot Detection, rear cross-traffic alert, frontal collision warning system, and Park Distance Control New 2.0T TDI® Clean Diesel EA288 engine returns a manufacturer-estimated 45 mpg on the highway Efficiency improved across Jetta lineup as a result of improved aerodynamics and a reduction in rolling resistance Bi-Xenon headlights with LED Daytime Running Lights and Adaptive Front-lighting System are now available on select models New York, NY – On top of being Volkswagen of America’s number one-selling car for decades, the Jetta is one of the world's most successful sedans with more than 14 million units sold since 1979. Last year alone, Volkswagen delivered 925,000 units worldwide—making the Jetta the top-selling car for both the brand and of the entire VW Group. Now, at the 2014 New York International Auto Show, Volkswagen is presenting the world premiere of the redesigned 2015 Jetta sedan. In addition to new styling touches at the front and rear of the car, the 2015 Jetta has notable changes throughout. Overall efficiency has been improved by reducing air drag and utilizing new tires that help improve rolling resistance. New driver assistance systems are available, such as Blind Spot Detection, frontal collision warning and rear cross-traffic alert. Inside, the Jetta sees an upgraded interior with new materials and an enriched assortment of available equipment. The 2015 Jetta continues to offer three four-cylinder gasoline engines (2.0-liter naturally aspirated and 1.8T and 2.0T TSI® Gen 3 turbocharged EA888 engines), a 1.4-liter turbocharged full hybrid version, and a new EA288 2.0-liter turbocharged EA288 TDI Clean Diesel engine. Furthermore, the 2015 Jetta has been engineered to meet or exceed all current U.S. safety standards. The 2015 Volkswagen Jetta is expected to arrive at U.S. Volkswagen dealers in the third quarter of 2014. New design and perfected aerodynamics Volkswagen has restyled the front and rear of the Jetta while improving its aerodynamic properties. At the front, the latest generation of the car can be recognized by its redesigned radiator grille with three cross fins, optional Bi-Xenon headlights with Adaptive Front-lighting System (AFS), and a new bumper. The Bi-Xenon headlights have an especially distinctive design: Each daytime running light is formed by 15 LEDs arranged in an L-shaped string alongside and beneath the xenon modules, creating an unmistakable light signature, day and night. A chrome element between the LED daytime running lights and the xenons accentuates the headlights. The new visual band formed by the radiator grille and the headlights, as well as the now larger lower air inlet, give the Jetta a wider and more substantial look. Re-sculpted foglights mounted in the outer areas of the bumper reinforce this effect. New rear design. The trunklid, taillights, rear logos and bumper of the Jetta have also been updated for 2015. The trunklid has an aerodynamic trailing edge, and on the sides the lines of this integrated spoiler extend into the rear fenders and then into the precise contour of the car's silhouette near the so-called character line. Beneath this are new available LED taillights (GLI and Hybrid only) which feature a bright stripe, as well as a redesigned VW logo. One level lower, the side lines of the trunklid now run downward, which dominates the design. The new bumper underneath it all completes the new rear look of the Jetta. Optimized aerodynamics. Volkswagen has introduced numerous innovative aerodynamic modifications into the design and equipment of the Jetta. In the front of the car, air drag has been reduced by the new bumper, optimized air intakes, and aerodynamically refined rain gutters on the sides near the A-pillars. A closer look reveals underbody panels at the rear axle and sill covers with wheel spoilers. Jetta models equipped with the 1.8T engine also have modified brake ventilation channels. Jetta GLI and Jetta Hybrid models sport special aerodynamic elements such as new front/rear spoilers and sill extensions. Dynamic radiator shutter. One new aerodynamic feature on the Jetta TDI 1.8T and 2.0 TDI Clean Diesel is a closeable shutter for the radiator grille. Closing the radiator shutter helps shorten the warm-up phase of the engine due to reduced air cooling. If the engine coolant temperature drops below a predefined temperature threshold while driving, the radiator shutter remains shut. Once the engine moves beyond the warm-up phase, the shutter can open and close based on vehicle speed and cooling demands. When closed, frontal airflow is guided around the body, which helps to improve the car's aerodynamics and thus reduces fuel consumption. Updated Interior Updates to the Jetta’s interior are subtle but significant. On mid- and high-level trims, the dash gauges are now framed in chrome-edged tubes, with an available color multifunction display nestled in between. Elsewhere, the 2015 Jetta sports several optional new features based on trim: a new multifunction steering wheel; redesigned air vent controls; piano black accents on the center console and around the gear shift lever; new chrome accents around the dual-zone Climatronic® control; ambient lighting; and new fabric colors and designs for the seats. New driver assistance systems Available technologies include Blind Spot Detection plus rear cross-traffic alert and frontal collision warning, as well as Bi-Xenon headlights with Adaptive Front-lighting System (AFS), turn signal, and LED Daytime Running Lights. Blind Spot Detection. Blind Spot Detection utilizes a flashing symbol in the outer area of the side mirrors to make the driver aware of vehicles in the blind spot next to the Jetta or approaching from the rear. This is intended to help improve driver awareness when changing lanes. The system uses radar sensors to "monitor" a space around the vehicle with a range of approximately 65 feet. Customers who choose the Blind Spot Detection option automatically get the rear cross-traffic alert assistance system as well. Rear cross-traffic alert. The new rear cross-traffic alert assistance system is offered in tandem with Blind Spot Detection. The system not only helps alert the driver to stationary and moving vehicles directly behind the vehicle; it also detects vehicles approaching from the side which may be difficult for the driver to see. The radar-based sensor module can even detect objects up to 65 feet away. In case of an impending collision, the system gives an acoustic warning. Frontal collision warning. The frontal collision warning system uses radar sensors to continually monitor the distance to traffic ahead of the vehicle. Within physical system limits, frontal collision warning warns the driver of critical front-end collision situations, both acoustically and visually by a clear warning symbol in the instrument cluster. The radar sensor acquires both the position of stationary cars and motorcycles and those moving in the same direction as the vehicle. The sensor is hidden behind the VW logo on the radiator grille. Bi-Xenon headlights. Bi-Xenon headlights with LED daytime running lights are now available. Also integrated in the new generation of headlights is what is referred to as the Advanced Front-lighting System (AFS). In this system, the headlights track the steering angle and can be turned up to 15 degrees, illuminating corners in turns. New TDI Clean Diesel in detail Improved efficiency. The 2.0-liter 150-horsepower EA288 TDI® Clean Diesel engine offered in the 2015 Jetta is one of the most fuel-efficient engines in its class and already conforms to the upcoming LEV3 emissions standard in the USA. Compared to the previous engine, the efficiency of this new generation TDI was improved by another eight percent. In city driving, the Jetta TDI Clean Diesel with a manual transmission delivers a manufacturer-estimated 32 city/45 highway mpg; its combined fuel economy is projected to be around 37 mpg. Torque-strong. The common-rail direct-injection engine with two balancer shafts is an exceptionally comfortable and dynamic engine. The 2.0 TDI Clean Diesel engine in the Jetta develops its maximum power over a low speed range of 3500 to 4000 rpm. The maximum torque of 236 pound-feet is available from just1750 rpm up to 3000 rpm. First new-generation MDB in the U.S. The TDI Clean Diesel engine in the Jetta is the first engine to be introduced to the U.S. which utilizes the new modular diesel system (MDB) from Volkswagen. Many components of the MDB engines are used in a modular way, such as the exhaust system components and the injection system, turbocharging systems, and forced induction cooling within the intake manifold module. Besides helping to reduce emissions, Volkswagen also designed the new TDI engine for minimal internal friction, for instance using piston rings with lower pretension and very low-friction camshaft bearings. Energy efficiency has also been optimized by using an oil pump with volumetric control and two pressure levels. An innovative thermal management system makes use of separate coolant loops for the cylinder head and the crankcase during the warm-up phase and has a water pump that can be deactivated. First Jetta to have SCR catalytic converter. A complex exhaust gas recirculation system is also used. To conform to the current BIN5-ULEV2 emissions standard in the U.S., as well as the future LEV3/TIER3 standard, the Jetta is equipped with an emissions control system, including Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) system that is located near the engine. This layout enables extremely fast response by the oxidation catalytic converter and the SCR catalytic converter. The SCR catalytic converter significantly reduces oxides of nitrogen (NOx) using the additive AdBlue® additive. Compared to the NOx storage catalytic converter (NSC) of the previous model, the use of the SCR catalytic converter not only further reduces emissions, but also improves fuel economy.
  19. Alongside the Golf SportWagen Concept, Volkswagen will also being showing off the 2015 Jetta which appears to have been ordered with a side of light refresh. The 2015 Jetta changes start with the exterior. Volkswagen swapped the front clip for a new one that has grille similar to the CC and a set of optional Xenon headlights with LEDs. Other exterior changes focused on improving the aero of the model with a new trunk lid and redesigned rain gutters. Moving inside, the Jetta gets some modest improvements with a new color multifunction display becoming an option on certain models. There's also new fabrics and trim pieces. Under the hood lies one of the biggest changes. Volkswagen is introducing a new 2.0L TDI four-cylinder with 150 horsepower and 236 pounds-feet of torque. When equipped with the manual transmission, Volkswagen says the TDI can achieve 32 City/45 Highway/37 Combined. The rest of the engine lineup which includes the 2.0L, 1.8T, and Hybrid carries over for 2015. The 2015 model also gains a smattering of safety equipment such as adaptive front lighting, blind spot detection, radar-based rear cross-traffic alert, and frontal collision warning. The 2015 Jetta arrives at dealers this fall. Source: Volkswagen William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 2015 VOLKSWAGEN JETTA MAKES GLOBAL DEBUT AT THE NEW YORK INTERNATIONAL AUTO SHOW New styling, driver assistance systems, improved fuel efficiency, and enhanced content head the updates for the 2015 model year New front, rear, and interior styling enhances Jetta’s clean and timeless design New available driver assistance systems: Blind Spot Detection, rear cross-traffic alert, frontal collision warning system, and Park Distance Control New 2.0T TDI® Clean Diesel EA288 engine returns a manufacturer-estimated 45 mpg on the highway Efficiency improved across Jetta lineup as a result of improved aerodynamics and a reduction in rolling resistance Bi-Xenon headlights with LED Daytime Running Lights and Adaptive Front-lighting System are now available on select models New York, NY – On top of being Volkswagen of America’s number one-selling car for decades, the Jetta is one of the world's most successful sedans with more than 14 million units sold since 1979. Last year alone, Volkswagen delivered 925,000 units worldwide—making the Jetta the top-selling car for both the brand and of the entire VW Group. Now, at the 2014 New York International Auto Show, Volkswagen is presenting the world premiere of the redesigned 2015 Jetta sedan. In addition to new styling touches at the front and rear of the car, the 2015 Jetta has notable changes throughout. Overall efficiency has been improved by reducing air drag and utilizing new tires that help improve rolling resistance. New driver assistance systems are available, such as Blind Spot Detection, frontal collision warning and rear cross-traffic alert. Inside, the Jetta sees an upgraded interior with new materials and an enriched assortment of available equipment. The 2015 Jetta continues to offer three four-cylinder gasoline engines (2.0-liter naturally aspirated and 1.8T and 2.0T TSI® Gen 3 turbocharged EA888 engines), a 1.4-liter turbocharged full hybrid version, and a new EA288 2.0-liter turbocharged EA288 TDI Clean Diesel engine. Furthermore, the 2015 Jetta has been engineered to meet or exceed all current U.S. safety standards. The 2015 Volkswagen Jetta is expected to arrive at U.S. Volkswagen dealers in the third quarter of 2014. New design and perfected aerodynamics Volkswagen has restyled the front and rear of the Jetta while improving its aerodynamic properties. At the front, the latest generation of the car can be recognized by its redesigned radiator grille with three cross fins, optional Bi-Xenon headlights with Adaptive Front-lighting System (AFS), and a new bumper. The Bi-Xenon headlights have an especially distinctive design: Each daytime running light is formed by 15 LEDs arranged in an L-shaped string alongside and beneath the xenon modules, creating an unmistakable light signature, day and night. A chrome element between the LED daytime running lights and the xenons accentuates the headlights. The new visual band formed by the radiator grille and the headlights, as well as the now larger lower air inlet, give the Jetta a wider and more substantial look. Re-sculpted foglights mounted in the outer areas of the bumper reinforce this effect. New rear design. The trunklid, taillights, rear logos and bumper of the Jetta have also been updated for 2015. The trunklid has an aerodynamic trailing edge, and on the sides the lines of this integrated spoiler extend into the rear fenders and then into the precise contour of the car's silhouette near the so-called character line. Beneath this are new available LED taillights (GLI and Hybrid only) which feature a bright stripe, as well as a redesigned VW logo. One level lower, the side lines of the trunklid now run downward, which dominates the design. The new bumper underneath it all completes the new rear look of the Jetta. Optimized aerodynamics. Volkswagen has introduced numerous innovative aerodynamic modifications into the design and equipment of the Jetta. In the front of the car, air drag has been reduced by the new bumper, optimized air intakes, and aerodynamically refined rain gutters on the sides near the A-pillars. A closer look reveals underbody panels at the rear axle and sill covers with wheel spoilers. Jetta models equipped with the 1.8T engine also have modified brake ventilation channels. Jetta GLI and Jetta Hybrid models sport special aerodynamic elements such as new front/rear spoilers and sill extensions. Dynamic radiator shutter. One new aerodynamic feature on the Jetta TDI 1.8T and 2.0 TDI Clean Diesel is a closeable shutter for the radiator grille. Closing the radiator shutter helps shorten the warm-up phase of the engine due to reduced air cooling. If the engine coolant temperature drops below a predefined temperature threshold while driving, the radiator shutter remains shut. Once the engine moves beyond the warm-up phase, the shutter can open and close based on vehicle speed and cooling demands. When closed, frontal airflow is guided around the body, which helps to improve the car's aerodynamics and thus reduces fuel consumption. Updated Interior Updates to the Jetta’s interior are subtle but significant. On mid- and high-level trims, the dash gauges are now framed in chrome-edged tubes, with an available color multifunction display nestled in between. Elsewhere, the 2015 Jetta sports several optional new features based on trim: a new multifunction steering wheel; redesigned air vent controls; piano black accents on the center console and around the gear shift lever; new chrome accents around the dual-zone Climatronic® control; ambient lighting; and new fabric colors and designs for the seats. New driver assistance systems Available technologies include Blind Spot Detection plus rear cross-traffic alert and frontal collision warning, as well as Bi-Xenon headlights with Adaptive Front-lighting System (AFS), turn signal, and LED Daytime Running Lights. Blind Spot Detection. Blind Spot Detection utilizes a flashing symbol in the outer area of the side mirrors to make the driver aware of vehicles in the blind spot next to the Jetta or approaching from the rear. This is intended to help improve driver awareness when changing lanes. The system uses radar sensors to "monitor" a space around the vehicle with a range of approximately 65 feet. Customers who choose the Blind Spot Detection option automatically get the rear cross-traffic alert assistance system as well. Rear cross-traffic alert. The new rear cross-traffic alert assistance system is offered in tandem with Blind Spot Detection. The system not only helps alert the driver to stationary and moving vehicles directly behind the vehicle; it also detects vehicles approaching from the side which may be difficult for the driver to see. The radar-based sensor module can even detect objects up to 65 feet away. In case of an impending collision, the system gives an acoustic warning. Frontal collision warning. The frontal collision warning system uses radar sensors to continually monitor the distance to traffic ahead of the vehicle. Within physical system limits, frontal collision warning warns the driver of critical front-end collision situations, both acoustically and visually by a clear warning symbol in the instrument cluster. The radar sensor acquires both the position of stationary cars and motorcycles and those moving in the same direction as the vehicle. The sensor is hidden behind the VW logo on the radiator grille. Bi-Xenon headlights. Bi-Xenon headlights with LED daytime running lights are now available. Also integrated in the new generation of headlights is what is referred to as the Advanced Front-lighting System (AFS). In this system, the headlights track the steering angle and can be turned up to 15 degrees, illuminating corners in turns. New TDI Clean Diesel in detail Improved efficiency. The 2.0-liter 150-horsepower EA288 TDI® Clean Diesel engine offered in the 2015 Jetta is one of the most fuel-efficient engines in its class and already conforms to the upcoming LEV3 emissions standard in the USA. Compared to the previous engine, the efficiency of this new generation TDI was improved by another eight percent. In city driving, the Jetta TDI Clean Diesel with a manual transmission delivers a manufacturer-estimated 32 city/45 highway mpg; its combined fuel economy is projected to be around 37 mpg. Torque-strong. The common-rail direct-injection engine with two balancer shafts is an exceptionally comfortable and dynamic engine. The 2.0 TDI Clean Diesel engine in the Jetta develops its maximum power over a low speed range of 3500 to 4000 rpm. The maximum torque of 236 pound-feet is available from just1750 rpm up to 3000 rpm. First new-generation MDB in the U.S. The TDI Clean Diesel engine in the Jetta is the first engine to be introduced to the U.S. which utilizes the new modular diesel system (MDB) from Volkswagen. Many components of the MDB engines are used in a modular way, such as the exhaust system components and the injection system, turbocharging systems, and forced induction cooling within the intake manifold module. Besides helping to reduce emissions, Volkswagen also designed the new TDI engine for minimal internal friction, for instance using piston rings with lower pretension and very low-friction camshaft bearings. Energy efficiency has also been optimized by using an oil pump with volumetric control and two pressure levels. An innovative thermal management system makes use of separate coolant loops for the cylinder head and the crankcase during the warm-up phase and has a water pump that can be deactivated. First Jetta to have SCR catalytic converter. A complex exhaust gas recirculation system is also used. To conform to the current BIN5-ULEV2 emissions standard in the U.S., as well as the future LEV3/TIER3 standard, the Jetta is equipped with an emissions control system, including Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) system that is located near the engine. This layout enables extremely fast response by the oxidation catalytic converter and the SCR catalytic converter. The SCR catalytic converter significantly reduces oxides of nitrogen (NOx) using the additive AdBlue® additive. Compared to the NOx storage catalytic converter (NSC) of the previous model, the use of the SCR catalytic converter not only further reduces emissions, but also improves fuel economy. View full article
  20. Last month at the Geneva Motor Show, Ford revealed the refreshed 2015 Focus Hatchback with a refreshed exterior and tweaks to the interior. Next week at the New York Auto Show, Ford will drop the cover on the 2015 Focus Sedan. Now if you expecting something different between the sedan and hatchback, then you'll disappointed. Much like the refreshed hatchback, the sedan gets a front end that is the same as the Fiesta and Fusion with the Aston Martin-esq grille and new headlights with LEDs. Around back is a new trunk lid and taillights. Heading inside, the Focus gets a new center stack, reshaped seats, and a new version of SYNC. Under the hood, the Focus gets the option of the turbocharged 1.0L EcoBoost three-cylinder with 123 horsepower and 146 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed manual transmission will be only transmission on offer with this engine. The 2.0L four-cylinder will carry over. The 2015 model also gets a revised suspension and power steering system. Source: Ford William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 Ford Reveals All-New Focus Sedan, Retains World's Best-Selling Nameplate Title for 2013 Ford Focus ranks as the best-selling vehicle nameplate in the world, based on just-released Polk new vehicle registration data for the 2013 calendar year Focus gains momentum with 50 percent sales growth in Chinese market New Focus four-door sedan globally unveiled, featuring leading combination of technology, fuel economy and power DEARBORN, Mich., April 9, 2014 – Ford Focus retains its title as world's best-selling vehicle nameplate for 2013, according to Ford analysis of the just-released full-year Polk new vehicle registration data from IHS Automotive. The news comes as a new Focus four-door sedan prepares to make its debut at next week's 2014 New York International Auto Show. Registrations of the compact Focus were up 8.1 percent with 1,097,618 cars sold worldwide last year. That compares with global Focus sales of 1,014,965 in 2012. Market gains for Focus continue to be driven by consumer demand in China. China registrations were up 50 percent in 2013 to 403,219 vehicles, up from 268,354 vehicles in 2012. China now is responsible for just more than one out of three Focus vehicles sold globally, based on Polk data. The debut of the new Focus four-door sedan and the Focus Electric in New York follows the Geneva Motor Show debut in March of the Focus three- and five-door hatchback and wagon. A new version of the performance Focus ST will be shown later this year. The redesigned Ford Focus offers a bolder exterior design, a more intuitive and upscale interior, a host of technologies uncommon for a compact car and the additional powertrain option of Ford's award-winning 1.0-liter EcoBoost® engine with a new six-speed manual transmission in the U.S.-spec Focus. While U.S. EPA fuel economy ratings are not yet available, Ford expects the 1.0-liter EcoBoost Focus to raise the bar in fuel efficiency among non-hybrid compact vehicles. For 2015, Focus adds an SE Sport Package, which includes new body treatments, paddle shifters (requires automatic transmission), a revised touring suspension, 17-inch black gloss aluminum wheels and P215/50 HR-17 tires. The paddle shift feature provides drivers an additional element of control by allowing them to simulate the manual gear selection aspects of a manual transmission and extract more power from their engines. Also notable for 2015, Ford's popular MyKey® feature will be standard on all trim levels. An all-new heated steering wheel will be available as well as 10 different wheels as factory options. "It is remarkable to see Focus again lead the industry as the No. 1-selling vehicle nameplate on the planet," said Jim Farley, Ford executive vice president, Ford Motor Company Global Marketing, Sales and Service and Lincoln. "With the new car, we've raised the bar again, showcasing Ford's commitment to continuous improvement – adding better technology for drivers and a sleeker, more modern exterior across the entire Focus family." While the latest Focus is essentially the same worldwide, color preference varies. In the U.S. market, Sterling Gray is the most popular at 21 percent of sales, with Tuxedo Black second at 15 percent. In China, Crystal Solid White is overwhelmingly the most popular with just more than 50 percent of sales. Candy Red is second at 17 percent. Fiesta world's best-selling subcompact Ford's analysis of Polk new vehicle registrations also confirms Ford Fiesta earned the top spot as the best-selling subcompact car globally, with 735,299 registrations for 2013. Together, registrations of Ford's small cars – Fiesta and Focus – totaled 1,832,917 vehicles last year, which is a 4.3 percent increase from 2012. Award-winning 1.0-liter EcoBoostIn addition to a host of styling and technology advances, the new Focus will offer the efficient, fun-to-drive 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine with a six-speed manual transmission. Automotive journalists globally named it International Engine of the Year for 2012 and 2013. "The 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine is proof that excellent fuel economy and performance can come in one package," said Raj Nair, group vice president, Ford Global Product Development. "Focus is already known for bringing together efficiency and fun, and our latest offering will bring consumers a whole new level of enjoyment – on the road and in what they'll save at the pump." The smallest engine in Ford's growing EcoBoost family – already available in Fiesta - will come standard in Focus with an Auto Start-Stop feature that automatically shuts down the engine at stops and instantly turns it back on at takeoff. EcoBoost technology combines smaller-displacement engines with turbocharging, direct injection, variable valve timing and proprietary Ford software to bring customers outstanding performance and fuel economy. Ford EcoBoost engines can deliver significantly better fuel economy than larger-displacement gasoline engines. New Focus customers also will enjoy a quieter ride, achieved by thicker carpets and side window glass and improved engine-bay insulation. Stylish new Focus The new Focus arrives with a bolder look. It features a restyled hood and grille, signature LED lighting for headlamps and taillamps, new rear lamp clusters and a restyled trunk lid. Four-door and five-door versions will be available in the United States. Inside, colors and materials have a clean, modern look, with satin chrome detailing, new seat trims and switches, and an available heated steering wheel. A new center console incorporating adjustable cupholders improves storage capacity. Advanced technologiesA package of sensors brings a new level of convenience for compact car customers by adding driver-assist technologies, including a rear view camera, available Blind Spot Information System and a lane-keeping system. Standard on Focus for the first time, the rearview camera will appear on either a 4.2-inch screen or the 8-inch screen that comes with MyFord Touch®-equipped cars. BLIS® uses two advanced multiple-beam radar modules, the same used with cross-traffic alert, which are packaged in both rear quarter panels. The radar identifies when a vehicle enters the defined blind spot zone and illuminates an indicator light on the corresponding sideview mirror, providing a warning that a vehicle is approaching. Should a Focus driver start to drift out of the current lane without a turn signal activated, the lane-keeping system provides a warning through a series of steering wheel vibrations that mimic a rumble strip. If the unintended lane departure is not corrected by the driver, the aid function of the system actively applies steering to help the driver direct the car back toward the center of the current lane. The new Focus benefits from advancements in exterior styling, interior design, powertrain and technology, as well as suspension and chassis upgrades. These include a new shock absorber valve design providing improved interior quietness, and a change to the rear suspension to give drivers a more connected feel to the road. The electric power-assisted steering has been retuned to make the driver feel even more connected to the road. Enhanced SYNC AppLink Focus drivers will have access to powerful new capabilities thanks to a host of functions developers can integrate as they modify their apps to communicate with enhanced SYNC® AppLink™. Android and iOS smartphone users can download more than 60 AppLink-enabled apps from the Apple App Store and Android market. New functions include: Connected apps can access a variety of real-time vehicle data such as speed, acceleration, odometer and location information that can be used by the app to further customize and personalize the owner experience. For example, access to the in-vehicle GPS signal can enable more precise and accurate location-based services than phone sensors More consistent user experience thanks to voice pass-through capability. This enables developers to use on-device or cloud-based voice-recognition systems to evaluate driver commands, meaning drivers can use the same set of voice commands to control an app when connected to the vehicle as they would use when not connected Notifications read aloud as a driver enters the car, with no need to touch the phone. Best of all, alerts are available any time a mobile device is connected to SYNC AppLink, even if the app is not currently active. This means a driver could get an alert about a traffic jam ahead while listening to the radio or using another app
  21. Last month at the Geneva Motor Show, Ford revealed the refreshed 2015 Focus Hatchback with a refreshed exterior and tweaks to the interior. Next week at the New York Auto Show, Ford will drop the cover on the 2015 Focus Sedan. Now if you expecting something different between the sedan and hatchback, then you'll disappointed. Much like the refreshed hatchback, the sedan gets a front end that is the same as the Fiesta and Fusion with the Aston Martin-esq grille and new headlights with LEDs. Around back is a new trunk lid and taillights. Heading inside, the Focus gets a new center stack, reshaped seats, and a new version of SYNC. Under the hood, the Focus gets the option of the turbocharged 1.0L EcoBoost three-cylinder with 123 horsepower and 146 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed manual transmission will be only transmission on offer with this engine. The 2.0L four-cylinder will carry over. The 2015 model also gets a revised suspension and power steering system. Source: Ford William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. Press Release is on Page 2 Ford Reveals All-New Focus Sedan, Retains World's Best-Selling Nameplate Title for 2013 Ford Focus ranks as the best-selling vehicle nameplate in the world, based on just-released Polk new vehicle registration data for the 2013 calendar year Focus gains momentum with 50 percent sales growth in Chinese market New Focus four-door sedan globally unveiled, featuring leading combination of technology, fuel economy and power DEARBORN, Mich., April 9, 2014 – Ford Focus retains its title as world's best-selling vehicle nameplate for 2013, according to Ford analysis of the just-released full-year Polk new vehicle registration data from IHS Automotive. The news comes as a new Focus four-door sedan prepares to make its debut at next week's 2014 New York International Auto Show. Registrations of the compact Focus were up 8.1 percent with 1,097,618 cars sold worldwide last year. That compares with global Focus sales of 1,014,965 in 2012. Market gains for Focus continue to be driven by consumer demand in China. China registrations were up 50 percent in 2013 to 403,219 vehicles, up from 268,354 vehicles in 2012. China now is responsible for just more than one out of three Focus vehicles sold globally, based on Polk data. The debut of the new Focus four-door sedan and the Focus Electric in New York follows the Geneva Motor Show debut in March of the Focus three- and five-door hatchback and wagon. A new version of the performance Focus ST will be shown later this year. The redesigned Ford Focus offers a bolder exterior design, a more intuitive and upscale interior, a host of technologies uncommon for a compact car and the additional powertrain option of Ford's award-winning 1.0-liter EcoBoost® engine with a new six-speed manual transmission in the U.S.-spec Focus. While U.S. EPA fuel economy ratings are not yet available, Ford expects the 1.0-liter EcoBoost Focus to raise the bar in fuel efficiency among non-hybrid compact vehicles. For 2015, Focus adds an SE Sport Package, which includes new body treatments, paddle shifters (requires automatic transmission), a revised touring suspension, 17-inch black gloss aluminum wheels and P215/50 HR-17 tires. The paddle shift feature provides drivers an additional element of control by allowing them to simulate the manual gear selection aspects of a manual transmission and extract more power from their engines. Also notable for 2015, Ford's popular MyKey® feature will be standard on all trim levels. An all-new heated steering wheel will be available as well as 10 different wheels as factory options. "It is remarkable to see Focus again lead the industry as the No. 1-selling vehicle nameplate on the planet," said Jim Farley, Ford executive vice president, Ford Motor Company Global Marketing, Sales and Service and Lincoln. "With the new car, we've raised the bar again, showcasing Ford's commitment to continuous improvement – adding better technology for drivers and a sleeker, more modern exterior across the entire Focus family." While the latest Focus is essentially the same worldwide, color preference varies. In the U.S. market, Sterling Gray is the most popular at 21 percent of sales, with Tuxedo Black second at 15 percent. In China, Crystal Solid White is overwhelmingly the most popular with just more than 50 percent of sales. Candy Red is second at 17 percent. Fiesta world's best-selling subcompact Ford's analysis of Polk new vehicle registrations also confirms Ford Fiesta earned the top spot as the best-selling subcompact car globally, with 735,299 registrations for 2013. Together, registrations of Ford's small cars – Fiesta and Focus – totaled 1,832,917 vehicles last year, which is a 4.3 percent increase from 2012. Award-winning 1.0-liter EcoBoostIn addition to a host of styling and technology advances, the new Focus will offer the efficient, fun-to-drive 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine with a six-speed manual transmission. Automotive journalists globally named it International Engine of the Year for 2012 and 2013. "The 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine is proof that excellent fuel economy and performance can come in one package," said Raj Nair, group vice president, Ford Global Product Development. "Focus is already known for bringing together efficiency and fun, and our latest offering will bring consumers a whole new level of enjoyment – on the road and in what they'll save at the pump." The smallest engine in Ford's growing EcoBoost family – already available in Fiesta - will come standard in Focus with an Auto Start-Stop feature that automatically shuts down the engine at stops and instantly turns it back on at takeoff. EcoBoost technology combines smaller-displacement engines with turbocharging, direct injection, variable valve timing and proprietary Ford software to bring customers outstanding performance and fuel economy. Ford EcoBoost engines can deliver significantly better fuel economy than larger-displacement gasoline engines. New Focus customers also will enjoy a quieter ride, achieved by thicker carpets and side window glass and improved engine-bay insulation. Stylish new Focus The new Focus arrives with a bolder look. It features a restyled hood and grille, signature LED lighting for headlamps and taillamps, new rear lamp clusters and a restyled trunk lid. Four-door and five-door versions will be available in the United States. Inside, colors and materials have a clean, modern look, with satin chrome detailing, new seat trims and switches, and an available heated steering wheel. A new center console incorporating adjustable cupholders improves storage capacity. Advanced technologiesA package of sensors brings a new level of convenience for compact car customers by adding driver-assist technologies, including a rear view camera, available Blind Spot Information System and a lane-keeping system. Standard on Focus for the first time, the rearview camera will appear on either a 4.2-inch screen or the 8-inch screen that comes with MyFord Touch®-equipped cars. BLIS® uses two advanced multiple-beam radar modules, the same used with cross-traffic alert, which are packaged in both rear quarter panels. The radar identifies when a vehicle enters the defined blind spot zone and illuminates an indicator light on the corresponding sideview mirror, providing a warning that a vehicle is approaching. Should a Focus driver start to drift out of the current lane without a turn signal activated, the lane-keeping system provides a warning through a series of steering wheel vibrations that mimic a rumble strip. If the unintended lane departure is not corrected by the driver, the aid function of the system actively applies steering to help the driver direct the car back toward the center of the current lane. The new Focus benefits from advancements in exterior styling, interior design, powertrain and technology, as well as suspension and chassis upgrades. These include a new shock absorber valve design providing improved interior quietness, and a change to the rear suspension to give drivers a more connected feel to the road. The electric power-assisted steering has been retuned to make the driver feel even more connected to the road. Enhanced SYNC AppLink Focus drivers will have access to powerful new capabilities thanks to a host of functions developers can integrate as they modify their apps to communicate with enhanced SYNC® AppLink™. Android and iOS smartphone users can download more than 60 AppLink-enabled apps from the Apple App Store and Android market. New functions include: Connected apps can access a variety of real-time vehicle data such as speed, acceleration, odometer and location information that can be used by the app to further customize and personalize the owner experience. For example, access to the in-vehicle GPS signal can enable more precise and accurate location-based services than phone sensors More consistent user experience thanks to voice pass-through capability. This enables developers to use on-device or cloud-based voice-recognition systems to evaluate driver commands, meaning drivers can use the same set of voice commands to control an app when connected to the vehicle as they would use when not connected Notifications read aloud as a driver enters the car, with no need to touch the phone. Best of all, alerts are available any time a mobile device is connected to SYNC AppLink, even if the app is not currently active. This means a driver could get an alert about a traffic jam ahead while listening to the radio or using another app View full article
  22. Earlier this week, we reported that Chevrolet was planning to show off three vehicles for the New York Auto Show; one of those being a new variant of the Corvette. Many of us have been racking our brains trying to figure out what that new model is. Well thanks to someone leaking out photos earlier today, GM has revealed what the model is. Meet the 2015 Corvette Z06 Convertible whose task is to give vehicles such as the Porsche 911 Turbo S Cabriolet a run for their money. So what's different about the Z06 Convertible from the Coupe? The most obvious change is the loss of a hardtop and the introduction of a soft-top and folding mechanism. Now with most convertibles, they tend to weigh a bit more than the coupe thanks to added bracing, structural enhancements, and the top mechanism. The Corvette Z06 Convertible bucks that trend with it weighing the same as the coupe. The secret? Comes down to the ultra-stiff aluminum frame which means there doesn't have to be additional strengthening. "Until recently it was not possible to create a lightweight, open-roof structure strong enough to cope with the braking, cornering, and acceleration of Corvette's top performance models. The frame for the Z06 convertible leverages advancements in computer-aided engineering, metallurgy, and manufacturing techniques – many of which were not available just five years ago," said Tadge Juechter, chief engineer for the Corvette. The supercharged 6.2L V8 engine with 625 horsepower is there, as is the choice of either a seven-speed manual or eight-speed automatic, Brembo Carbon-Ceramic brakes, and Michelin Pilot Super Sport tires. The Corvette Z06 Convertible arrives early next year. Source: Chevrolet Press Release is on Page 2 Drop-top Supercar: 2015 Corvette Z06 Convertible NEW YORK – Chevrolet today introduced one of the most capable drop-tops on the market: the 2015 Corvette Z06 Convertible. With at least 625 horsepower, and 635 pound-feet of torque, the Z06 is also the most powerful convertible ever produced by Chevrolet. "The Z06 Convertible is a world-class supercar in every sense," said Mark Reuss, executive vice president, Global Product Development. "Only a handful of convertibles in the world bring more than 600 horsepower and 600 pound-feet of torque. Even fewer can match the advanced technologies, aerodynamic design, and visceral driving experience of the Z06 Convertible." This is the first Z06 Convertible offered from the factory since 1963 when the Z06 option package was introduced for endurance racing. Records show only 199 Corvette orders with a Z06 package that year, including one convertible. Recent technological advancements enable the building of a modern Z06 Convertible, said Corvette chief engineer Tadge Juechter "Until recently it was not possible to create a lightweight, open-roof structure strong enough to cope with the braking, cornering, and acceleration of Corvette's top performance models," Juechter said. "The frame for the Z06 convertible leverages advancements in computer-aided engineering, metallurgy, and manufacturing techniques – many of which were not available just five years ago." The aluminum structure is 20 percent stiffer than the previous, fixed-roof Z06. As there are no structural reinforcements needed for the Z06 Convertible, its curb weight is nearly identical to the Z06 Coupe. They also share the same chassis tuning, powertrain output, driver technologies and equipment options – including the Z07 Performance Package, which adds Brembo carbon-ceramic matrix brakes, Michelin Pilot Sport Cup tires and adjustable front- and rear-aerodynamic components. "The most impressive aspect of the Z06 Convertible may be its performance bandwidth," said Juechter. "Very few cars on the market can match its combination of extreme, supercar levels of performance; the flexibility for daily driving and long-distance commuting; and the 360-degree, open-air driving experience only true convertibles can offer." All-aluminum, high-tech foundation The Corvette Z06 Convertible represents the culmination of more than four years developing an all-new, all-aluminum structure for the seventh generation Corvette. That structure, built at General Motors' Bowling Green Assembly plant, was designed to the specifications of the Corvette Stingray, Corvette Z06 and the Corvette Racing C7.R. "We wanted a frame that was lighter than the steel frame of the previous Corvette, yet strong enough for both a 600-horsepower convertible and a 24-hour endurance racer," said Ed Moss, engineering group manager for Corvette structures. "That would not have been possible without improvements in computer-aided engineering software, which allowed us to model more than 17,000 frame iterations, with each iteration improving strength and stiffness, while reducing mass." The team used nearly 186,000 computational hours of modeling to develop the frame. It features main rails composed of five customized aluminum segments, including aluminum extrusions at each end, a center main rail section and hollow-cast nodes at the suspension interface points. The gauge of each segment varies in thickness from 2mm to 11mm, tailored – along with the shape – to meet the strength and stiffness requirements for each frame section with minimal weight. These components are assembled using many advanced manufacturing processes, including:• 439 spot-welds using a GM-patented process that uses a unique electrode designed specifically for aluminum • 188 Flowdrill-machined fasteners installed by a high-speed drill that extrudes the frame material to create a strong, integral collar tapped for bolt-on fasteners• 113 feet of structural adhesives used in conjunction with welding and fasteners to increase overall frame stiffness • 37 feet of laser welds, which join frame sections via a precise beam of high energy that minimizes heat beyond the weld area for improved structural accuracy.The only structural differences between the Z06 Coupe and Convertible are provisions for mounting the power-folding top, and repositioned safety-belt mounts. High-performance aerodynamics Like the structure, only minor design changes distinguish the Z06 Coupe from the Convertible. The Z06 convertible features an electronic top that can be lowered remotely using the car's key fob. The top can also open or clos on the go, at speeds of up to 30 mph (50 km/h). With the top up, the Z06 Convertible is designed for a refined driving experience. A thick fabric top, offered in four colors along with sound-absorbing padding and a glass rear window, contributes to a quiet cabin and premium appearance. Behind the seat backs, dual accent panels – either Carbon Flash-painted or available with exposed carbon fiber – enhance the character lines of the tonneau cover. Corvette Stingray's signature "waterfall" design originates in the valley between the nacelles, bringing the exterior color into the interior. The power-operated tonneau cover necessitated moving the air intakes for the differential and transmission coolers from the rear quarter panels on the Z06 Coupe to the underbody of the Z06 Convertible. Otherwise, both models share the same, performance-driven aesthetic. "Practically every exterior panel serves a functional purpose to meet the performance goals of the Z06," said Tom Peters, Corvette design director, "The flared fenders accommodate larger, wider wheels and tires for more grip. The larger vents provide more cooling air to the engine, brakes, transmission and differential for increased track capability. The more aggressive aerodynamic package generates true downforce for more cornering grip and high-speed stability." Both Z06 models are fitted with Michelin tires (Pilot Super Sport tires for the Z06; Sport Cup 2 tires with the Z07 package): P285/30ZR19 front, and 335/25ZR20 rear. The tires are mounted on lightweight, spin-cast aluminum wheels (19 x 10 inches in front and 20 x 12 inches in the rear). Their open, ultralight design showcases the massive Brembo brakes, which contribute to the design:• The Z06 features two-piece steel rotors, measuring 14.6 x 1.3-inch (371 x 33 mm) front and 14.4 x 1-inch (365 x 25 mm) rear, with aluminum six-piston and four-piston fixed calipers, respectively • The Z07 package adds larger, 15.5 x 1.4-inch (394 x 36 mm) front and 15.3 x 1.3-inch (388 x 33 mm) carbon ceramic-matrix brake rotors for consistent performance lap after lap. They collectively save 23 pounds over the standard Z06 rotors. Both Z06 coupe and convertible will be available with one of three, increasing levels of aerodynamic downforce:• The standard Z06 features a front splitter, spats around the front wheel openings, a unique carbon-fiber hood with a larger vent, and rear spoiler • An available carbon-fiber aero package delivers aerodynamic downforce four times greater than the standard Z06. It adds a carbon fiber front splitter with aviation-style winglets, carbon fiber rocker panels, and a larger rear spoiler with a fixed wickerbill – a small, vertical tab at the edge of the spoiler that significantly increases downforce. The package is available in black or a visible carbon-fiber finish• The available Z07 package adds larger winglets to the front splitter, along with an adjustable, see-through center section on the rear spoiler enabling customers to tailor the aerodynamics to their preference. Compared to the Corvette Stingray, the Corvette Z06 fenders are 2.2 inches (56 mm) wider at the front, and 3.15 inches (80 mm) at the rear. Those extensions give the Corvette Z06 a wider, lower appearance further emphasized by a unique rear fascia. It incorporates the same taillamp assemblies as the Stingray, but on the Z06 the taillamps are pushed approximately three inches farther apart, toward to edges of the body. The exterior design also reflects the increased cooling required for the new Corvette Z06. For example, the mesh pattern on the front fascia was designed to deliver the most possible airflow to the supercharger's intercooler heat exchanger, so much that the mesh grill directs more air into the engine bay than if the grille was removed. The unique grille also features dedicated brake-cooling intakes and wider grille outlets on the bottom serve as air diffusers. A larger hood vent allows air driven through the grille to exit through the hood rather than being forced under the car, which could create lift. Standard front and rear brake-cooling ducts, including Z06-signature rear ducts integrated in front of the rear fender openings, are also part of the functional design changes. The Z06 benefits from interior details designed for high-performance driving, first introduced on the Stingray, including a steel-reinforced grab bar on the center console for the passenger and soft-touch materials on the edge of the console, where the driver naturally braces during high-load cornering. Like the Stingray, the Z06 comes with two seating choices: a GT seat, for all-around comfort, and a Competition Sport seat with more aggressive side bolstering, which provides greater support on the track. A magnesium frame structure for both seats provides greater rigidity and strength compared with steel frames. Unprecedented attention to detail and build quality complements the Corvette Z06's performance. All models feature a fully wrapped interior, with every surface covered by premium, soft-touch materials. Available materials, depending on the trim level, include Napa leather, aluminum, carbon fiber and micro-suede. The interior also features a flat-bottom steering wheel with a carbon fiber center spoke. The Z06 comes in five interior colors, including two that are unique to Z06 – blue and dark gray. Supercharged, efficient performance The heart of the 2015 Corvette Z06 is the all-new LT4 6.2L supercharged V-8 engine, expected to deliver at least 625 horsepower (466 kW) and 635 lb-ft of torque (861 Nm). To balance performance and efficiency, the LT4 leverages the same trio of advanced technologies introduced on the Corvette Stingray: Direct injection, Active Fuel Management, or cylinder deactivation, and continuously variable valve timing. These technologies – combined with the fuel-efficient multi-speed transmissions, aerodynamic design and lightweight construction – help make the new Z06 surprisingly fuel efficient. "The supercharged LT4 engine delivers the greatest balance of performance and efficiency ever in the Corvette," said John Rydzewski, assistant chief engineer for Small-Block engines. "It is one of the world's only supercharged engines to incorporate cylinder deactivation technology, enabling it to cruise efficiently on the highway with reduced fuel consumption, but offer more than 600 horsepower whenever the driver calls up its tremendous power reserve." The supercharged LT4 comes with a standard seven-speed manual transmission with Active Rev Match, or an all-new 8L90 eight-speed paddle-shift automatic transmission designed to enhance performance and efficiency. The seven-speed manual incorporates rev-matching technology for upshifts and downshifts. A new dual-mass flywheel and dual-disc clutch deliver greater shift quality and feel through lower inertia. The eight-speed automatic is tuned for world-class shift-response times. Smaller steps between gears keep the LT4 within the sweet spot of the rpm band, making the most of the output of the supercharged engine for exhilarating performance and greater efficiency. "There's no trade-off in drivability with the new 8L90 eight-speed automatic transmission – it was designed to deliver performance on par with dual-clutch designs, but without sacrificing refinement," said Bill Goodrich, assistant chief engineer for eight-speed automatic transmissions. "It is also the highest-capacity automatic transmission ever offered in a Chevrolet car." Featuring four gearsets and five clutches, creative packaging enables the GM-developed eight-speed automatic to fit the same space as the six-speed automatic used in the Corvette Stingray. Extensive use of aluminum and magnesium make it more than eight pounds (4 kg) lighter than the six-speed. Along with design features that reduce friction, the 8L90 is expected to contribute up to 5-percent greater efficiency, when compared with a six-speed automatic. Track-proven technologiesThe 2015 Corvette Z06 Coupe and Convertible leverage the technologies introduced on the Corvette Stingray, with unique features and calibrations tailored for its capabilities. "Our mission with the seventh-generation Corvette was to make the performance levels more accessible, enabling drivers to exploit every pound-foot of torque, every 'g' of grip and every pound of downforce," said Juechter. "It's a philosophy we introduced with the 460-horsepower Corvette Stingray – and one that's even more relevant with an estimated 625 horsepower at your beck and call." The new Z06 retains the SLA-type front and rear suspension design of the Corvette Stingray but uniquely calibrated for the higher performance threshold. The third-generation Magnetic Selective Ride Control dampers, adjustable for touring comfort or maximum track performance via the standard Driver Mode Selector, are standard on Z06. Like the Stingray, the Driver Mode Selector tailors up to a dozen features of the Z06 to suit the driver's environment, including: • Launch control: Available in Track mode for manual and automatic transmissions, providing maximum off-the-line acceleration• Traction control: Weather mode tailors traction control and engine torque for driving in inclement conditions • Performance Traction Management: Available in Track mode and offers five settings of torque reduction and brake intervention for track driving• Electronic Limited Slip Differential: Adjusts the rate at which the limited slip engages, balancing steering response and stability in different driving conditions with more aggressive performance in Sport and Track modes. The smart electronic limited-slip differential, or eLSD, is standard. It features a hydraulically actuated clutch capable of infinitely varying clutch engagement. The system enhances all aspects of performance by constantly tailoring the clutch-pack engagement based on a unique algorithm that factors in vehicle speed, steering input and throttle position to improve steering feel, handling balance and traction.
  23. Earlier this week, we reported that Chevrolet was planning to show off three vehicles for the New York Auto Show; one of those being a new variant of the Corvette. Many of us have been racking our brains trying to figure out what that new model is. Well thanks to someone leaking out photos earlier today, GM has revealed what the model is. Meet the 2015 Corvette Z06 Convertible whose task is to give vehicles such as the Porsche 911 Turbo S Cabriolet a run for their money. So what's different about the Z06 Convertible from the Coupe? The most obvious change is the loss of a hardtop and the introduction of a soft-top and folding mechanism. Now with most convertibles, they tend to weigh a bit more than the coupe thanks to added bracing, structural enhancements, and the top mechanism. The Corvette Z06 Convertible bucks that trend with it weighing the same as the coupe. The secret? Comes down to the ultra-stiff aluminum frame which means there doesn't have to be additional strengthening. "Until recently it was not possible to create a lightweight, open-roof structure strong enough to cope with the braking, cornering, and acceleration of Corvette's top performance models. The frame for the Z06 convertible leverages advancements in computer-aided engineering, metallurgy, and manufacturing techniques – many of which were not available just five years ago," said Tadge Juechter, chief engineer for the Corvette. The supercharged 6.2L V8 engine with 625 horsepower is there, as is the choice of either a seven-speed manual or eight-speed automatic, Brembo Carbon-Ceramic brakes, and Michelin Pilot Super Sport tires. The Corvette Z06 Convertible arrives early next year. Source: Chevrolet Press Release is on Page 2 Drop-top Supercar: 2015 Corvette Z06 Convertible NEW YORK – Chevrolet today introduced one of the most capable drop-tops on the market: the 2015 Corvette Z06 Convertible. With at least 625 horsepower, and 635 pound-feet of torque, the Z06 is also the most powerful convertible ever produced by Chevrolet. "The Z06 Convertible is a world-class supercar in every sense," said Mark Reuss, executive vice president, Global Product Development. "Only a handful of convertibles in the world bring more than 600 horsepower and 600 pound-feet of torque. Even fewer can match the advanced technologies, aerodynamic design, and visceral driving experience of the Z06 Convertible." This is the first Z06 Convertible offered from the factory since 1963 when the Z06 option package was introduced for endurance racing. Records show only 199 Corvette orders with a Z06 package that year, including one convertible. Recent technological advancements enable the building of a modern Z06 Convertible, said Corvette chief engineer Tadge Juechter "Until recently it was not possible to create a lightweight, open-roof structure strong enough to cope with the braking, cornering, and acceleration of Corvette's top performance models," Juechter said. "The frame for the Z06 convertible leverages advancements in computer-aided engineering, metallurgy, and manufacturing techniques – many of which were not available just five years ago." The aluminum structure is 20 percent stiffer than the previous, fixed-roof Z06. As there are no structural reinforcements needed for the Z06 Convertible, its curb weight is nearly identical to the Z06 Coupe. They also share the same chassis tuning, powertrain output, driver technologies and equipment options – including the Z07 Performance Package, which adds Brembo carbon-ceramic matrix brakes, Michelin Pilot Sport Cup tires and adjustable front- and rear-aerodynamic components. "The most impressive aspect of the Z06 Convertible may be its performance bandwidth," said Juechter. "Very few cars on the market can match its combination of extreme, supercar levels of performance; the flexibility for daily driving and long-distance commuting; and the 360-degree, open-air driving experience only true convertibles can offer." All-aluminum, high-tech foundation The Corvette Z06 Convertible represents the culmination of more than four years developing an all-new, all-aluminum structure for the seventh generation Corvette. That structure, built at General Motors' Bowling Green Assembly plant, was designed to the specifications of the Corvette Stingray, Corvette Z06 and the Corvette Racing C7.R. "We wanted a frame that was lighter than the steel frame of the previous Corvette, yet strong enough for both a 600-horsepower convertible and a 24-hour endurance racer," said Ed Moss, engineering group manager for Corvette structures. "That would not have been possible without improvements in computer-aided engineering software, which allowed us to model more than 17,000 frame iterations, with each iteration improving strength and stiffness, while reducing mass." The team used nearly 186,000 computational hours of modeling to develop the frame. It features main rails composed of five customized aluminum segments, including aluminum extrusions at each end, a center main rail section and hollow-cast nodes at the suspension interface points. The gauge of each segment varies in thickness from 2mm to 11mm, tailored – along with the shape – to meet the strength and stiffness requirements for each frame section with minimal weight. These components are assembled using many advanced manufacturing processes, including:• 439 spot-welds using a GM-patented process that uses a unique electrode designed specifically for aluminum • 188 Flowdrill-machined fasteners installed by a high-speed drill that extrudes the frame material to create a strong, integral collar tapped for bolt-on fasteners• 113 feet of structural adhesives used in conjunction with welding and fasteners to increase overall frame stiffness • 37 feet of laser welds, which join frame sections via a precise beam of high energy that minimizes heat beyond the weld area for improved structural accuracy.The only structural differences between the Z06 Coupe and Convertible are provisions for mounting the power-folding top, and repositioned safety-belt mounts. High-performance aerodynamics Like the structure, only minor design changes distinguish the Z06 Coupe from the Convertible. The Z06 convertible features an electronic top that can be lowered remotely using the car's key fob. The top can also open or clos on the go, at speeds of up to 30 mph (50 km/h). With the top up, the Z06 Convertible is designed for a refined driving experience. A thick fabric top, offered in four colors along with sound-absorbing padding and a glass rear window, contributes to a quiet cabin and premium appearance. Behind the seat backs, dual accent panels – either Carbon Flash-painted or available with exposed carbon fiber – enhance the character lines of the tonneau cover. Corvette Stingray's signature "waterfall" design originates in the valley between the nacelles, bringing the exterior color into the interior. The power-operated tonneau cover necessitated moving the air intakes for the differential and transmission coolers from the rear quarter panels on the Z06 Coupe to the underbody of the Z06 Convertible. Otherwise, both models share the same, performance-driven aesthetic. "Practically every exterior panel serves a functional purpose to meet the performance goals of the Z06," said Tom Peters, Corvette design director, "The flared fenders accommodate larger, wider wheels and tires for more grip. The larger vents provide more cooling air to the engine, brakes, transmission and differential for increased track capability. The more aggressive aerodynamic package generates true downforce for more cornering grip and high-speed stability." Both Z06 models are fitted with Michelin tires (Pilot Super Sport tires for the Z06; Sport Cup 2 tires with the Z07 package): P285/30ZR19 front, and 335/25ZR20 rear. The tires are mounted on lightweight, spin-cast aluminum wheels (19 x 10 inches in front and 20 x 12 inches in the rear). Their open, ultralight design showcases the massive Brembo brakes, which contribute to the design:• The Z06 features two-piece steel rotors, measuring 14.6 x 1.3-inch (371 x 33 mm) front and 14.4 x 1-inch (365 x 25 mm) rear, with aluminum six-piston and four-piston fixed calipers, respectively • The Z07 package adds larger, 15.5 x 1.4-inch (394 x 36 mm) front and 15.3 x 1.3-inch (388 x 33 mm) carbon ceramic-matrix brake rotors for consistent performance lap after lap. They collectively save 23 pounds over the standard Z06 rotors. Both Z06 coupe and convertible will be available with one of three, increasing levels of aerodynamic downforce:• The standard Z06 features a front splitter, spats around the front wheel openings, a unique carbon-fiber hood with a larger vent, and rear spoiler • An available carbon-fiber aero package delivers aerodynamic downforce four times greater than the standard Z06. It adds a carbon fiber front splitter with aviation-style winglets, carbon fiber rocker panels, and a larger rear spoiler with a fixed wickerbill – a small, vertical tab at the edge of the spoiler that significantly increases downforce. The package is available in black or a visible carbon-fiber finish• The available Z07 package adds larger winglets to the front splitter, along with an adjustable, see-through center section on the rear spoiler enabling customers to tailor the aerodynamics to their preference. Compared to the Corvette Stingray, the Corvette Z06 fenders are 2.2 inches (56 mm) wider at the front, and 3.15 inches (80 mm) at the rear. Those extensions give the Corvette Z06 a wider, lower appearance further emphasized by a unique rear fascia. It incorporates the same taillamp assemblies as the Stingray, but on the Z06 the taillamps are pushed approximately three inches farther apart, toward to edges of the body. The exterior design also reflects the increased cooling required for the new Corvette Z06. For example, the mesh pattern on the front fascia was designed to deliver the most possible airflow to the supercharger's intercooler heat exchanger, so much that the mesh grill directs more air into the engine bay than if the grille was removed. The unique grille also features dedicated brake-cooling intakes and wider grille outlets on the bottom serve as air diffusers. A larger hood vent allows air driven through the grille to exit through the hood rather than being forced under the car, which could create lift. Standard front and rear brake-cooling ducts, including Z06-signature rear ducts integrated in front of the rear fender openings, are also part of the functional design changes. The Z06 benefits from interior details designed for high-performance driving, first introduced on the Stingray, including a steel-reinforced grab bar on the center console for the passenger and soft-touch materials on the edge of the console, where the driver naturally braces during high-load cornering. Like the Stingray, the Z06 comes with two seating choices: a GT seat, for all-around comfort, and a Competition Sport seat with more aggressive side bolstering, which provides greater support on the track. A magnesium frame structure for both seats provides greater rigidity and strength compared with steel frames. Unprecedented attention to detail and build quality complements the Corvette Z06's performance. All models feature a fully wrapped interior, with every surface covered by premium, soft-touch materials. Available materials, depending on the trim level, include Napa leather, aluminum, carbon fiber and micro-suede. The interior also features a flat-bottom steering wheel with a carbon fiber center spoke. The Z06 comes in five interior colors, including two that are unique to Z06 – blue and dark gray. Supercharged, efficient performance The heart of the 2015 Corvette Z06 is the all-new LT4 6.2L supercharged V-8 engine, expected to deliver at least 625 horsepower (466 kW) and 635 lb-ft of torque (861 Nm). To balance performance and efficiency, the LT4 leverages the same trio of advanced technologies introduced on the Corvette Stingray: Direct injection, Active Fuel Management, or cylinder deactivation, and continuously variable valve timing. These technologies – combined with the fuel-efficient multi-speed transmissions, aerodynamic design and lightweight construction – help make the new Z06 surprisingly fuel efficient. "The supercharged LT4 engine delivers the greatest balance of performance and efficiency ever in the Corvette," said John Rydzewski, assistant chief engineer for Small-Block engines. "It is one of the world's only supercharged engines to incorporate cylinder deactivation technology, enabling it to cruise efficiently on the highway with reduced fuel consumption, but offer more than 600 horsepower whenever the driver calls up its tremendous power reserve." The supercharged LT4 comes with a standard seven-speed manual transmission with Active Rev Match, or an all-new 8L90 eight-speed paddle-shift automatic transmission designed to enhance performance and efficiency. The seven-speed manual incorporates rev-matching technology for upshifts and downshifts. A new dual-mass flywheel and dual-disc clutch deliver greater shift quality and feel through lower inertia. The eight-speed automatic is tuned for world-class shift-response times. Smaller steps between gears keep the LT4 within the sweet spot of the rpm band, making the most of the output of the supercharged engine for exhilarating performance and greater efficiency. "There's no trade-off in drivability with the new 8L90 eight-speed automatic transmission – it was designed to deliver performance on par with dual-clutch designs, but without sacrificing refinement," said Bill Goodrich, assistant chief engineer for eight-speed automatic transmissions. "It is also the highest-capacity automatic transmission ever offered in a Chevrolet car." Featuring four gearsets and five clutches, creative packaging enables the GM-developed eight-speed automatic to fit the same space as the six-speed automatic used in the Corvette Stingray. Extensive use of aluminum and magnesium make it more than eight pounds (4 kg) lighter than the six-speed. Along with design features that reduce friction, the 8L90 is expected to contribute up to 5-percent greater efficiency, when compared with a six-speed automatic. Track-proven technologiesThe 2015 Corvette Z06 Coupe and Convertible leverage the technologies introduced on the Corvette Stingray, with unique features and calibrations tailored for its capabilities. "Our mission with the seventh-generation Corvette was to make the performance levels more accessible, enabling drivers to exploit every pound-foot of torque, every 'g' of grip and every pound of downforce," said Juechter. "It's a philosophy we introduced with the 460-horsepower Corvette Stingray – and one that's even more relevant with an estimated 625 horsepower at your beck and call." The new Z06 retains the SLA-type front and rear suspension design of the Corvette Stingray but uniquely calibrated for the higher performance threshold. The third-generation Magnetic Selective Ride Control dampers, adjustable for touring comfort or maximum track performance via the standard Driver Mode Selector, are standard on Z06. Like the Stingray, the Driver Mode Selector tailors up to a dozen features of the Z06 to suit the driver's environment, including: • Launch control: Available in Track mode for manual and automatic transmissions, providing maximum off-the-line acceleration• Traction control: Weather mode tailors traction control and engine torque for driving in inclement conditions • Performance Traction Management: Available in Track mode and offers five settings of torque reduction and brake intervention for track driving• Electronic Limited Slip Differential: Adjusts the rate at which the limited slip engages, balancing steering response and stability in different driving conditions with more aggressive performance in Sport and Track modes. The smart electronic limited-slip differential, or eLSD, is standard. It features a hydraulically actuated clutch capable of infinitely varying clutch engagement. The system enhances all aspects of performance by constantly tailoring the clutch-pack engagement based on a unique algorithm that factors in vehicle speed, steering input and throttle position to improve steering feel, handling balance and traction. View full article
  24. The New York Auto Show is just a couple weeks away and news of what will be appearing is beginning to show up. Autoblog has learned that Chevrolet will have three major debuts at the show. The debuts will include new version of the Corvette, an updated 2015 Cruze, and a "important new addition to our small-vehicle lineup." Lets begin with the Corvette. Autoblog speculates that it could track-focused version of the Z06 model, limited-edition package, or something else. We keen to thinking its the latter two at this time. Then there is the 2015 Cruze. As we reported last week, spy shots of what is purported to be the 2015 model was caught in China. Will it be the same? The last model debut intrigues us as it doesn't seem to hint at a replacement for either the Spark or Sonic. Could it be a subcompact crossover? We'll have the answers in a couple week's time. Source: Autoblog William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
  25. The New York Auto Show is just a couple weeks away and news of what will be appearing is beginning to show up. Autoblog has learned that Chevrolet will have three major debuts at the show. The debuts will include new version of the Corvette, an updated 2015 Cruze, and a "important new addition to our small-vehicle lineup." Lets begin with the Corvette. Autoblog speculates that it could track-focused version of the Z06 model, limited-edition package, or something else. We keen to thinking its the latter two at this time. Then there is the 2015 Cruze. As we reported last week, spy shots of what is purported to be the 2015 model was caught in China. Will it be the same? The last model debut intrigues us as it doesn't seem to hint at a replacement for either the Spark or Sonic. Could it be a subcompact crossover? We'll have the answers in a couple week's time. Source: Autoblog William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. View full article

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