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  1. 30 years ago at the Chicago Auto Show, Mazda pulled the sheet off a small roadster called the MX-5 Miata. Little did anyone know how much of an impact this little car would make in the world. Today, Mazda honored this anniversary by introducing the 2019 MX-5 Miata 30th Anniversary Edition. Available both as the soft-top and RF hard-top, it comes in a new Racing Orange paint color that Mazda says evokes "the breaking dawn of an exciting new day." A set of 17-inch Rays ZE40 forged aluminum wheels are based on the wheels used on the MX-5 Cup race car. All versions of the 30th Anniversary get Recaro seats, Brembo brakes, Bose sound system and compatibility with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Opt for the manual and it includes limited-slip differential, Bilstein shocks, and a front shock tower brace. Mazda is planning on building 3,000 MX-5 Miata 30th Anniversary Editions, with 500 coming to the U.S. Pricing ranges from $34,995 for the manual soft-top to $39,995 for the RF automatic. But you have missed your chance to order one. Car and Driver notes that Mazda has sold out of the allotment for the U.S. within four hours of opening the order books. Gallery: 2019 Mazda MX-5 Miata 30th Anniversary Source: Mazda Mazda Announces 2019 MX-5 Miata 30th Anniversary Celebrating 30 years, MX-5 Miata isn't just a car, it's a cultural movement 2019 Mazda MX-5 Miata 30th Anniversary will be available for pre-order with a starting MSRP* of $34,995 This special edition MX-5 Miata is equipped with a SKYACTIV-G 2.0L engine rated to deliver 181 horsepower Exclusive features include Racing Orange exterior paint and interior accents, special serial number badging, RAYS 17-inch forged alloy wheels and RECARO sports seats with Alcantara seating surface CHICAGO, Feb. 7, 2019 -- In 1989 the Chicago Auto Show played host to one of Mazda's biggest milestones, the debut of the MX-5 Miata. Now, 30 years later, Mazda is proud to share another milestone at the Chicago Auto Show with the world premiere of the 2019 Mazda MX-5 Miata 30th Anniversary. Continuing to embrace the philosophy of the original 1989 MX-5 Miata, this special edition represents three decades of history. A history that has been filled with so many people, from the passionate Mazda engineers who created the first-generation MX-5 as a homage to early lightweight European sportscars, to the succeeding development engineers who took up the challenge to build on the high ambitions of their predecessors. Collectively, they all helped the MX-5 reach amazing heights, from being the first car to win both World Car of the Year and World Design of the Year in the same year with the current generation MX-5 Miata in 2016, to achieving production of the one millionth unit in April 2016. In total, the MX-5 has won over 280 awards, as of January 2019, with many of those accolades thanks to the unshakable support of Mazda owners and fans all over the world. This special edition is meant to commemorate all these milestones and the important people that have been part of this special journey, especially Mazda's enthusiastic fans. The 2019 Mazda MX-5 Miata 30th Anniversary, offered in both soft top and RF models, builds upon the 2019 Mazda MX-5 Grand Touring, which added many new features including a newly refined powertrain rated to deliver 181 horsepower and 151 pound-feet of torque; a 17 percent increase over the previous model year. The first noticeable new feature is the exclusive Racing Orange exterior paint color. This strikingly vivid color pays homage to the yellow MX-5 Miata Club Racer that also debuted at the 1989 Chicago Auto Show. Racing Orange is meant to represent sunrise and anticipation, while staying true to the characteristics of a pure sports car. The roof on RF is painted Racing Orange, while the soft top will feature a black cloth top. The theme continues to the interior with orange interior louvers and orange piping on the heated RECARO sports seats. The seats in this special edition are wrapped in Alcantara, which is also found in the door inserts and lower instrument panel. All of these features help to further enhance the customer's sense of exclusivity and pride of ownership. To contrast the brilliant color, the new RAYS ZE40 17-inch Dark Gunmetal forged alloy wheels play up the MX-5's driving legacy. Customers may notice these wheels are based on the Global MX-5 Cup Car, further connecting the iconic roadster's anniversary edition to its racing roots. Standard in all 2019 Mazda MX-5 30th Anniversary models are Apple CarPlayTM and Android AutoTM infotainment technologies. Also standard is SiriusXM with three-month subscription and new SiriusXM three-year Traffic Plus and Travel Link® subscription. No special edition would be complete without the appropriate badging. Each 2019 Mazda MX-5 30th Anniversary model will be affixed with a special "30th Anniversary" serialized badging on the driver's side rear quarter panel to help commemorate 30 years of endless gratitude and unbending determination to keep evolving. Production of 2019 Mazda MX-5 30th Anniversary model will be limited to a total of just 3,000 units worldwide. In the U.S., there will be a total of 500 non-sequentially badged units available through a custom build to order website at www.mazdausa.com/30th-anniversary. Owners can order their 2019 Mazda MX-5 30th Anniversary model as either a soft top or RF with either a manual or automatic transmission. Orders can be placed starting on 2/7 at 12 p.m. CST. View full article
  2. 30 years ago at the Chicago Auto Show, Mazda pulled the sheet off a small roadster called the MX-5 Miata. Little did anyone know how much of an impact this little car would make in the world. Today, Mazda honored this anniversary by introducing the 2019 MX-5 Miata 30th Anniversary Edition. Available both as the soft-top and RF hard-top, it comes in a new Racing Orange paint color that Mazda says evokes "the breaking dawn of an exciting new day." A set of 17-inch Rays ZE40 forged aluminum wheels are based on the wheels used on the MX-5 Cup race car. All versions of the 30th Anniversary get Recaro seats, Brembo brakes, Bose sound system and compatibility with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Opt for the manual and it includes limited-slip differential, Bilstein shocks, and a front shock tower brace. Mazda is planning on building 3,000 MX-5 Miata 30th Anniversary Editions, with 500 coming to the U.S. Pricing ranges from $34,995 for the manual soft-top to $39,995 for the RF automatic. But you have missed your chance to order one. Car and Driver notes that Mazda has sold out of the allotment for the U.S. within four hours of opening the order books. Gallery: 2019 Mazda MX-5 Miata 30th Anniversary Source: Mazda Mazda Announces 2019 MX-5 Miata 30th Anniversary Celebrating 30 years, MX-5 Miata isn't just a car, it's a cultural movement 2019 Mazda MX-5 Miata 30th Anniversary will be available for pre-order with a starting MSRP* of $34,995 This special edition MX-5 Miata is equipped with a SKYACTIV-G 2.0L engine rated to deliver 181 horsepower Exclusive features include Racing Orange exterior paint and interior accents, special serial number badging, RAYS 17-inch forged alloy wheels and RECARO sports seats with Alcantara seating surface CHICAGO, Feb. 7, 2019 -- In 1989 the Chicago Auto Show played host to one of Mazda's biggest milestones, the debut of the MX-5 Miata. Now, 30 years later, Mazda is proud to share another milestone at the Chicago Auto Show with the world premiere of the 2019 Mazda MX-5 Miata 30th Anniversary. Continuing to embrace the philosophy of the original 1989 MX-5 Miata, this special edition represents three decades of history. A history that has been filled with so many people, from the passionate Mazda engineers who created the first-generation MX-5 as a homage to early lightweight European sportscars, to the succeeding development engineers who took up the challenge to build on the high ambitions of their predecessors. Collectively, they all helped the MX-5 reach amazing heights, from being the first car to win both World Car of the Year and World Design of the Year in the same year with the current generation MX-5 Miata in 2016, to achieving production of the one millionth unit in April 2016. In total, the MX-5 has won over 280 awards, as of January 2019, with many of those accolades thanks to the unshakable support of Mazda owners and fans all over the world. This special edition is meant to commemorate all these milestones and the important people that have been part of this special journey, especially Mazda's enthusiastic fans. The 2019 Mazda MX-5 Miata 30th Anniversary, offered in both soft top and RF models, builds upon the 2019 Mazda MX-5 Grand Touring, which added many new features including a newly refined powertrain rated to deliver 181 horsepower and 151 pound-feet of torque; a 17 percent increase over the previous model year. The first noticeable new feature is the exclusive Racing Orange exterior paint color. This strikingly vivid color pays homage to the yellow MX-5 Miata Club Racer that also debuted at the 1989 Chicago Auto Show. Racing Orange is meant to represent sunrise and anticipation, while staying true to the characteristics of a pure sports car. The roof on RF is painted Racing Orange, while the soft top will feature a black cloth top. The theme continues to the interior with orange interior louvers and orange piping on the heated RECARO sports seats. The seats in this special edition are wrapped in Alcantara, which is also found in the door inserts and lower instrument panel. All of these features help to further enhance the customer's sense of exclusivity and pride of ownership. To contrast the brilliant color, the new RAYS ZE40 17-inch Dark Gunmetal forged alloy wheels play up the MX-5's driving legacy. Customers may notice these wheels are based on the Global MX-5 Cup Car, further connecting the iconic roadster's anniversary edition to its racing roots. Standard in all 2019 Mazda MX-5 30th Anniversary models are Apple CarPlayTM and Android AutoTM infotainment technologies. Also standard is SiriusXM with three-month subscription and new SiriusXM three-year Traffic Plus and Travel Link® subscription. No special edition would be complete without the appropriate badging. Each 2019 Mazda MX-5 30th Anniversary model will be affixed with a special "30th Anniversary" serialized badging on the driver's side rear quarter panel to help commemorate 30 years of endless gratitude and unbending determination to keep evolving. Production of 2019 Mazda MX-5 30th Anniversary model will be limited to a total of just 3,000 units worldwide. In the U.S., there will be a total of 500 non-sequentially badged units available through a custom build to order website at www.mazdausa.com/30th-anniversary. Owners can order their 2019 Mazda MX-5 30th Anniversary model as either a soft top or RF with either a manual or automatic transmission. Orders can be placed starting on 2/7 at 12 p.m. CST.
  3. William Maley

    Ford News: Ford Issues A Recall On 2019 Ranger

    The Ford Ranger is beginning to hit dealers, but it has already been hit with a recall. Ford announced today that 3,500 Rangers in North America (3,000 in the U.S. and 500 in Canada) have an issue with the PRNDL bezel wiring, The problem deals with the wiring interfering with the shifter interlock override, preventing the transmission from locking when put into park. This means you can shift it out of park when the vehicle is off and without a foot on the brake. Ford says that it is unaware of any accidents or injuries arising from this issue. The trucks involved were built between June 4, 2018 and Jan. 9, 2019. Dealers will investigate whether or not the truck does shift out of park when it is turned off, and without a foot on the brake. If it does, then dealers will relocate the harness and perform the test. Source: Ford Ford Motor Company Issues Recall For Select 2019 Ranger Vehicles To Verify Shifter Interlock Functionality DEARBORN, Mich., Feb. 6, 2019 – Ford is issuing a safety compliance recall on certain 2019 Ford Ranger vehicles to verify shifter interlock functionality. In the affected vehicles, the PRNDL bezel wiring may interfere with the shifter interlock override, preventing the shifter from locking in the park position and allowing the driver to shift the transmission out of park with the vehicle off and without a foot on the brake pedal. Ford is not aware of any accidents or injuries resulting from this condition. This action affects approximately 3,500 Ranger vehicles in North America, including approximately 3,000 in the United States and 500 in Canada. Affected 2019 Ranger vehicles were built at Michigan Assembly Plant, June 4, 2018 to Jan. 9, 2019. Dealers will verify shifter interlock functionality by attempting to move the transmission shifter out of park with the vehicle off and without a foot on the brake pedal. If the shifter moves out of park, dealers will look for wiring interference, relocate the wiring and retest. The Ford reference number for this recall is 19C02. View full article
  4. William Maley

    Ford Issues A Recall On 2019 Ranger

    The Ford Ranger is beginning to hit dealers, but it has already been hit with a recall. Ford announced today that 3,500 Rangers in North America (3,000 in the U.S. and 500 in Canada) have an issue with the PRNDL bezel wiring, The problem deals with the wiring interfering with the shifter interlock override, preventing the transmission from locking when put into park. This means you can shift it out of park when the vehicle is off and without a foot on the brake. Ford says that it is unaware of any accidents or injuries arising from this issue. The trucks involved were built between June 4, 2018 and Jan. 9, 2019. Dealers will investigate whether or not the truck does shift out of park when it is turned off, and without a foot on the brake. If it does, then dealers will relocate the harness and perform the test. Source: Ford Ford Motor Company Issues Recall For Select 2019 Ranger Vehicles To Verify Shifter Interlock Functionality DEARBORN, Mich., Feb. 6, 2019 – Ford is issuing a safety compliance recall on certain 2019 Ford Ranger vehicles to verify shifter interlock functionality. In the affected vehicles, the PRNDL bezel wiring may interfere with the shifter interlock override, preventing the shifter from locking in the park position and allowing the driver to shift the transmission out of park with the vehicle off and without a foot on the brake pedal. Ford is not aware of any accidents or injuries resulting from this condition. This action affects approximately 3,500 Ranger vehicles in North America, including approximately 3,000 in the United States and 500 in Canada. Affected 2019 Ranger vehicles were built at Michigan Assembly Plant, June 4, 2018 to Jan. 9, 2019. Dealers will verify shifter interlock functionality by attempting to move the transmission shifter out of park with the vehicle off and without a foot on the brake pedal. If the shifter moves out of park, dealers will look for wiring interference, relocate the wiring and retest. The Ford reference number for this recall is 19C02.
  5. "I love it when a plan comes together." Hannibal from the A-Team. I wasn't expecting to get back into a review vehicle for some time as the Detroit Auto Show tends to reduce the number of vehicles available - they're reserved for those coming out-of-state and OEM representatives. I thought next month is when I would begin my rotation once again. But a surprise email this morning from General Motors asking if I was able to take a 2019 Chevrolet Silverado today. Of course! This particular Silverado is an LT Trail Boss Crew Cab with the 5.3L V8 and eight-speed automatic transmission. Base is $48,300 and my as-tested price comes to $55,965 with a few option packages like the Convenience package (front bucket seats, dual-zone climate control, and heated steering wheel). First Impressions? Even though it may appear the truck is black, it is actually painted a dark blue (blame my iPhone). Even though I'm not sold on the design on the Silverado as a whole, the Trail Boss make it look aggressive. Interior looks a rehash of the one seen in the previous Silverado. Material quality is better, but I was kind of hoping more in terms of design. 5.3L V8 doesn't feel muzzled when leaving a stop or needing to accelerate quickly - THANK YOU GM! Haven't quite figured out how to open the power tailgate. Spent a few moments just pressing the button and not having the tailgate come down. Need to some reading in the owners manual. I'll be trying my best to update this piece with other observations and impressions throughout the week. You can also drop some questions below if you want to something about the truck. Gallery: 2019 Chevrolet Silverado LT Trail Boss Crew Cab View full article
  6. The Passport is making a return to Honda, minus the help from Isuzu. Today at an event before the LA Auto Show, Honda unveiled the 2019 Passport which will slot between CR-V and Pilot in their crossover lineup. The Pilot DNA's is clearly evident in the Passport's design as the two have the same profile and design cues such as the front grille and sculpted sides. The Passport uses the same platform and 111-inch wheelbase as the Pilot, but is 6.5-inches shorter in overall length. Step inside and you might think that you're in either the Pilot or Ridgeline. The dashboard and center stack design in the Passport is the same as in those two models. One item we're happy to see is a volume knob for the 8-inch infotainment system. Power comes from the 3.5L V6 producing 280 horsepower and 262 pound-feet of torque. This is teamed with a nine-speed automatic and the choice of front or Honda's i-VTM4 all-wheel drive system. Along with a one-inch increase in ground-clearance, Honda claims that the Passport will be very capable off-road (we shall see). As for towing, the Passport is rated at 3,500 pounds for FWD and 5,000 for AWD. Honda isn't saying on pricing, but we would expect it to be slightly less than the $31,450 for the base Pilot LX. Sales are expected to begin early next year. Gallery: 2019 Honda Passport Source: Honda 2019 Honda Passport Makes World Debut: Adventure-Ready All-New 5-passenger SUV on Display at 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show Nov 27, 2018 - LOS ANGELES Passport provides a unique blend of on- and off-road prowess with exceptional occupant and cargo hauling capability 280-horsepower V6 and available sophisticated all-wheel drive system give Passport robust towing and off-road capabilities Standard Honda Sensing® safety and driver-assistive tech on all trims Multiple accessory options to personalize Passport ownership The all-new 2019 Honda Passport 5-passenger V6-powered SUV made its world debut today. Going on sale early next year, Passport provides a unique combination of on-road driving refinement and off-road adventure capability along with best-in-class interior space. The all-new Honda Passport will slot between the compact CR-V and three-row Pilot in Honda's award-winning SUV lineup. The model's reinforced unibody frame, powerful direct-injected i-VTEC® V6 engine, fully independent suspension and nimble steering make it an ideal choice for driving long distances or around town. In addition, the robust off-road capability offered by the available Honda i-VTM4™ torque-vectoring all-wheel drive and its four-mode Intelligent Traction Management system means Passport can tackle the kind of tough terrain normally reserved for less refined body-on-frame or off-road focused SUVs. "The all-new 2019 Honda Passport provides the on-road comfort and nimble handling buyers will appreciate on their daily commute with the robust off-road and all-weather capability that make for a great weekend adventure vehicle," said Henio Arcangeli, Jr., senior vice president of American Honda Motor Co., Inc. and general manager, Honda Division. "We saw an opportunity to deliver something that Honda is uniquely capable of making and the new Passport is in a great position to capture buyers looking for a more personal, powerful and capable Honda SUV." Designed and developed exclusively by Honda's North America R&D teams in Torrance, California, and Raymond, Ohio, the Passport and its V6 engine will be manufactured at the company's Lincoln, Alabama plant. Additional key product highlights include: Standard 280-horsepower, 3.5-liter, direct-injected V6 engine with i-VTEC® valvetrain mated to latest-generation 9-speed automatic transmission Available Intelligent Variable Torque Management (i-VTM4™) torque-vectoring all-wheel drive enhances on- and off-road performance Intelligent Traction Management system with available Snow, Sand and Mud modes help optimize performance for varying surface conditions Standard Honda Sensing® safety and driver-assistive technology Standard 20-inch alloy wheels and tires on all trims Best-in-class underfloor cargo storage Wide range of Honda accessories for active lifestyles, including Adventure and Urban accessory packages The all-new 2019 Honda Passport's rugged exterior design and stance is highlighted by standard 20-inch wheels, a matte-black grille, floating roof design, aggressive wheel arches, increased ride height and a tailgate design that emphasizes width. Inside, Passport offers best-in-class passenger space (115.9 cu.-ft.) and total interior volume (157.1 cu.-ft.) for carrying family, friends and weekend adventure gear. Passport features a large (best-in-class 2.5 cu.-ft.) segmented underfloor cargo compartment for carrying dirty gear or keeping valuables out of sight. Passport will be offered in four trims: the well-appointed Sport, upgraded EX-L, high-tech Touring, and the fully equipped Elite. All models except the line-topping Elite can be configured with 2- or all-wheel drive – all Elite trims come standard with all-wheel drive. All trims will feature 20-inch alloy wheels and tires, the Honda Sensing® suite of advanced safety and driver-assistive technology, LED headlights, fog lights, taillights and DRLs, Smart Start and Smart Entry and three-zone automatic climate control. EX-L and higher trims utilize Honda's latest Display Audio interface with an 8-inch touchscreen, a physical volume knob and Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™ integration. Additional exterior upgrades, depending on trim, include a power tailgate with available hands-free operation, a one-touch tilt/slide moonroof and heated auto-dimming and power folding side mirrors. Furthermore, the blind spot information system, rear cross traffic monitor, and front and rear parking sensors are available driver assistive technologies. Available premium features include second-row sunshades, wireless phone charging, embedded Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System, 4G LTE in-vehicle Wi-Fi, premium audio, and HondaLink® cloud-based services, including remote unlocking, concierge services, stolen vehicle tracking and more. Powertrain All 2019 Honda Passport trims are powered by a 3.5-liter V6 engine that makes 280 peak horsepower and 262 lb.-ft. of torque (SAE net), placing Passport in the top of its class for standard horsepower in a segment where some competitors offer less powerful 4-cylinder engines as standard equipment. The Honda i-VTEC® V6 is mated to the latest-generation of Honda's 9-speed automatic transmission (9AT) that is among the most advanced in the class, offering smooth and responsive power delivery. At the heart of the robust all-weather and off-road driving capabilities is Honda's available i-VTM4™ all-wheel drive system. Unlike most competing systems, i-VTM4™ uses active torque vectoring to send up to 70 percent of engine torque to the rear axle and 100 percent of that torque to either the left or right rear wheels. This capability gives Passport excellent handling in all conditions, such as rain-slicked or snowy roads or sandy trails, while also contributing to more responsive performance by overdriving the outside rear wheel in turns. In addition, the Intelligent Traction Management (ITM) is standard on both the front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive Passport. In all-wheel drive applications, the four-mode ITM systems works in conjunction with i-VTM4™, allowing drivers to customize powertrain performance for different weather and terrain, including sand, snow and mud. In front-wheel drive models, the system has two modes for normal and snow conditions. Tested in the world's harshest environments, including the sands of Dubai, muddy country roads of Russia, and snowbound trails in Minnesota, the combination of i-VTM4™ and Intelligent Traction Management make Passport more capable off road than many unibody SUVs, giving drivers the confidence to tackle not just wet or rainy conditions, but a variety of harsh off-road terrains. Passport is well equipped for towing, with 3,500-pound capacity on front-wheel drive models and 5,000 pounds on all-wheel drive models when both are equipped with the optional towing package. Passport is the gateway to adventure being able to tow camping trailers, boats, or "toy" haulers, over more rugged terrain. The standard multi-view rear-view camera makes connecting to a trailer easier than ever with its "overhead" option giving the driver a bird's eye view of the hitch and trailer. Exterior Design and Platform Honda's most rugged light truck yet, Passport's expressive design leaves no doubt of its adventure-seeking mission and is highlighted by its higher ride height, standard 20-inch wheels, 245/50R all-weather tires and sporty styling cues, including a matte black grille and bumper, blackout headlights and black wheels. LED headlight accents, gloss black trim, a "floating" C-pillar, and chrome exhaust finishers hint at Passport's around-town sophistication. Trim-exclusive wheel designs are available across the lineup, and Touring and Elite trims offer upsized 265/45R20 tires as standard equipment. Beyond good looks, Passport's design offers superior functionality as well. Ground clearance is up 0.5 inches on front-wheel drive models and 1.1 inches on all-wheel drive models compared to Passport's three-row sibling, Pilot, while its shorter overall length and shortened rear overhang offer improved approach, departure and breakover angles, suitable for more rugged terrain. Passport's wider wheels and tires complement its athletic and sporty stance and support both responsive around-town handling and increased grip off-road. A ruggedly styled front end stands out on the road with its scratch-resistant matte finish grill suited to the off-road adventures Passport is designed for. Passport is based on Honda's Global Light Truck platform and shares much of its underlying structure with the three-row Pilot SUV and Ridgeline pickup, including its highly rigid unibody construction. This platform has a fully boxed floor that is sophisticated yet strong with a four-wheel independent suspension, with MacPherson struts in front and a multilink independent rear. The latest generation of Honda's proprietary Advanced Compatibility Engineering™ (ACE™) body structure, provides outstanding frontal collision protection and collision compatibility with larger and smaller vehicles. Interior Design and Packaging Passport's modern and sophisticated interior design offers ample space for five people and provides class-leading passenger volume of 115.9 cu.-ft. and best-in-class total interior volume of 157.1 cu.-ft. From Sport to Elite trims, Passport features high-quality interior appointments including attractive and durable cloth on Sport or perforated leather on EX-L, Touring and Elite trims, a blackout headliner, and generous use of soft-touch surfaces on the dash and doors. Passport's interior also offers class-leading utility. Behind the second row of seats is a cargo area generously sized for weekend camping trips or excursions to the home improvement store, with 41.2 cu. ft. of space, expandable to 77.9 cu. ft. with the second row folded flat, which is more than enough to accommodate mountain bikes or a week's worth of camping gear. From the cargo area, the second-row seatbacks fold with the push of a button, and Passport's main cargo floor is reversible between carpeted and easy-to-clean hard plastic surfaces. Passport features class-leading underfloor storage, with 2.5 cu. ft. of easily accessible compartmented storage, which can be accessorized with removable washable bins, including a custom bin for storing the available accessory trailer hitch receiver. There's also plenty of space for small stuff. Passport offers generous storage space for front seat passengers, including a huge center console bin between the front seats with a rolling cover that serves as a tray when closed. Additional storage is found in the doors and ahead of the push-button gear selector. Technology Packed with available modern amenities such as an audio and connectivity system with Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™ integration and a digital driver's meter, Passport delivers all the modern technology that today's SUV buyers demand. Passport Sport trim comes standard with a 215-watt audio system with a 5-inch display monitor and 6 speakers, plus a subwoofer. Passport EX-L, Touring and Elite trims feature Honda's 8-inch Display Audio touchscreen system with Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™ smartphone integration and manual power/volume knob. The Display Audio system uses gestures common to smartphones and tablets, such as swipe, tap and pinch, to control the vehicle's audio system, display settings and other advanced features. Intuitive and easy to use, with a simplified menu structure, it also offers customizable shortcuts for commonly used features and customizable app locations. Passport Touring and Elite trims come with a 590-watt 10-speaker premium audio system. Passport's instrument cluster uses a 7-inch Thin Film Transistor (TFT) screen with a wide range of information content. In addition to displaying typical vehicle functions such as vehicle speed and RPM, the full-color digital meter includes a Multi-Information Display (MID) with customizable features, such as audio system information, a detailed trip computer, phone information, and turn-by-turn route guidance on Passport models equipped with navigation. Drivers navigate the new TFT using steering wheel controls designed for intuitive operation, such as Bluetooth® phone buttons that are more easily distinguished by touch. Touring and Elite trims of Passport provide 4G LTE in-vehicle Wi-Fi TCU that can supporting up to seven devices and a free 90-day/3GB trial period AT&T data plan. The TCU is key to Passport's support of numerous HondaLink® cloud-based services. Using an app, owners can keep track of maintenance and even book appointments, remember their Passport's location and numerous other functions. Safety and Driver Assistance Technology The Honda Sensing® suite of advanced safety and driver-assistive technologies is standard on all 2019 Passport trims. Honda Sensing® helps provide greater awareness of driving conditions around the vehicle, in some cases helps drivers maintain lane position and, under certain conditions slowing or even stopping the vehicle if it detects a potential front collision. Honda Sensing® includes Collision Mitigation Braking System™ (CMBS™) featuring Forward Collison Warning (FCW), Road Departure Mitigation (RDM) including Lane Departure Warning (LDW), Lane Keeping Assistance System (LKAS) and Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC). The new Passport was designed to provide a high level of active and passive safety performance and targets an NCAP 5-Star Overall Vehicle Score safety rating and an IIHS TOP SAFETY PICK rating. All tested 2019 model-year Honda vehicles achieve an NCAP 5-star Overall Vehicle Score safety rating. All Passport trims come equipped with a Multi-Angle Rearview Camera with overhead "bird's eye" view, ideal for trailer hookups. Additional available driver-assistive technologies include dynamic guidelines for the rearview camera, blind spot Information system (EX-L, Touring and Elite) with Rear Cross-Traffic Detection, and front and rear parking sensors (Touring and Elite). Accessories A wide variety of Honda Genuine Accessories are designed for Passport, including roof boxes of various sizes, a roof basket, and roof-mounted bike, kayak and ski or snowboard racks. Inside, Passport owners can weatherproof their cargo area with hard plastic covers for the floor, sides, and seatbacks. The underfloor storage can be divided with separate, removable and washable bins. For those seeking a more sophisticated urban look, a variety of cosmetic exterior items are available, such as a colored graphics package, undercarriage welcome lights, and lighted door sills. From the outset, Passport will be available with two accessory packages. The Adventure Package adds running boards, a trailer hitch, fender flares and more for outdoor weekend getaways. The Urban Package adds front and rear underbody spoilers, unique 20-inch wheels, cargo storage bins and roof rails and crossbars for a sophisticated in-town look. View full article
  7. "I love it when a plan comes together." Hannibal from the A-Team. I wasn't expecting to get back into a review vehicle for some time as the Detroit Auto Show tends to reduce the number of vehicles available - they're reserved for those coming out-of-state and OEM representatives. I thought next month is when I would begin my rotation once again. But a surprise email this morning from General Motors asking if I was able to take a 2019 Chevrolet Silverado today. Of course! This particular Silverado is an LT Trail Boss Crew Cab with the 5.3L V8 and eight-speed automatic transmission. Base is $48,300 and my as-tested price comes to $55,965 with a few option packages like the Convenience package (front bucket seats, dual-zone climate control, and heated steering wheel). First Impressions? Even though it may appear the truck is black, it is actually painted a dark blue (blame my iPhone). Even though I'm not sold on the design on the Silverado as a whole, the Trail Boss make it look aggressive. Interior looks a rehash of the one seen in the previous Silverado. Material quality is better, but I was kind of hoping more in terms of design. 5.3L V8 doesn't feel muzzled when leaving a stop or needing to accelerate quickly - THANK YOU GM! Haven't quite figured out how to open the power tailgate. Spent a few moments just pressing the button and not having the tailgate come down. Need to some reading in the owners manual. I'll be trying my best to update this piece with other observations and impressions throughout the week. You can also drop some questions below if you want to something about the truck. Gallery: 2019 Chevrolet Silverado LT Trail Boss Crew Cab
  8. William Maley

    Mazda News: 2019 Mazda3 To Begin At $21,895

    Mazda has some big ambitions with the upcoming 2019 3 and that is reflected in the pricing. The model will now start at $21,895 for the sedan and $24,495 for the hatchback - includes an $895 destination charge. For those keeping track, the 2019 3 sedan is $2,905 more expensive than the 2018 sedan, whereas the 2019 hatchback is $4,255 more than the 2018 model. The reason for the higher price tag is due to the 2019 model being only offered with the 2.5L four-cylinder producing 186 horsepower and six-speed automatic. A 2.0L SkyActiv-X compression-ignition engine will be joining the lineup later in the year and possibly help drop the price somewhat. Those wanting a manual will need to pony up $28,395 for the top-line Premium hatchback. It isn't available on the sedan All-wheel drive is optional on the sedan and hatchback, but only with the automatic. Standard equipment on the base sedan includes 16-inch wheels, cloth seats, and a 8.8-inch infotainment system. Stepping up to either the Select trim on the sedan or base hatchback will add 18-inch wheels, keyless entry, push-button start, i-Activsense active-safety features, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration. Higher trims add a power driver's seat, heated front seats, Bose audio system, LED lighting, and a heads-up display. The 2019 Mazda3 arrives at dealers in March. Source: Mazda View full article
  9. William Maley

    2019 Mazda3 To Begin At $21,895

    Mazda has some big ambitions with the upcoming 2019 3 and that is reflected in the pricing. The model will now start at $21,895 for the sedan and $24,495 for the hatchback - includes an $895 destination charge. For those keeping track, the 2019 3 sedan is $2,905 more expensive than the 2018 sedan, whereas the 2019 hatchback is $4,255 more than the 2018 model. The reason for the higher price tag is due to the 2019 model being only offered with the 2.5L four-cylinder producing 186 horsepower and six-speed automatic. A 2.0L SkyActiv-X compression-ignition engine will be joining the lineup later in the year and possibly help drop the price somewhat. Those wanting a manual will need to pony up $28,395 for the top-line Premium hatchback. It isn't available on the sedan All-wheel drive is optional on the sedan and hatchback, but only with the automatic. Standard equipment on the base sedan includes 16-inch wheels, cloth seats, and a 8.8-inch infotainment system. Stepping up to either the Select trim on the sedan or base hatchback will add 18-inch wheels, keyless entry, push-button start, i-Activsense active-safety features, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration. Higher trims add a power driver's seat, heated front seats, Bose audio system, LED lighting, and a heads-up display. The 2019 Mazda3 arrives at dealers in March. Source: Mazda
  10. It has been talked about for quite sometime, but Hyundai is making it official today at the Detroit Auto Show. The Korean automaker introduced their first N-Line model, the 2019 Elantra GT N-Line. N-Line brings forth a number of the exterior design cues and changes to suspension found on the standard N models to the basic models. For the Elantra GT, N-Line will be taking the place of the Sport. For the exterior, the N-Line brings a unique front grille, lower front spoiler, blacked-out side mirrors, and 18-inch N-Line wheels. Step inside to find a leather-wrapped steering wheel, leather sport seats with the ’N’ logo, updated instrument cluster, and red accents to help differentiate this model from the standard Elantra GT. Under the skin, Hyundai has given the Elantra GT N-Line’s suspension the once-over with stiffer springs, new engine mounts, thicker stability bars, and a set of Michelin PS4 summer tires if you get the six-speed manual. The seven-speed DCT sticks with a set of all-season Hankooks. Hyundai is retaining the turbocharged 1.6L four-cylinder with 201 horsepower and 195 pound-feet. Pricing for the 2019 Hyundai Elantra GT N-Line will begin at $24,185 for the manual and $25,285 for the DCT. Prices include an $885 destination charge. You can go to your nearest Hyundai dealer now to check them out. Gallery: 2019 Hyundai Elantra GT N-Line Source: Hyundai Hyundai Debuts First U.S. ‘N Line’ Model with 2019 Elantra GT Lineup N Line is an exciting new trim level in the Hyundai ‘N’ product portfolio N Line focuses on sporty design cues and refined powertrain/chassis dynamics FOUNTAIN VALLEY, Calif., Jan. 14, 2019 - Complementing the performance of Elantra GT is the announcement of the new 2019 Hyundai Elantra GT N Line trim. Elantra GT N Line is the first N Line model for the United States from Hyundai. N Line trims add sporty design elements and refined powertrain/chassis upgrades to existing Hyundai products. N Line is part of Hyundai’s ‘N’ product portfolio that includes the brand’s growing ultimate ‘N’ range of vehicles (Veloster N, i30 N, i30 Fastback N). The 2019 Elantra GT N Line replaces the 2018 Elantra GT Sport and signals more N Line models to come on future Hyundai products. Elantra GT N Line and the 2019 Elantra GT are on sale now. The 2019 Elantra GT continues to bring increased utility and enhanced driving dynamics to the compact hatchback segment. Elantra GT and the new N Line trim are poised to compete head-on with hatchback competitors and provide a fun-to-drive alternative to small CUVs. Elantra GT is the best of both worlds. 2019 Elantra GT Changes New Elantra GT N Line added to the lineup Elantra GT Sport is dropped from the lineup (replaced by the Elantra GT N Line) The entry-level Elantra GT is a carryover model Panoramic sunroof and leather seating surfaces added to 2019 Elantra GT Style Package “Hyundai N models satisfy the needs of performance-oriented enthusiasts with exclusive, custom-tuned powertrain and chassis applications,” said Thomas Schemera, executive vice president, Hyundai Motor Group’s Product Planning & Strategy Division.” “N Line is designed for those buyers craving N’s sporty styling cues coupled with performance-tuned suspension upgrades, all at compelling price points.” Design Elements The Elantra GT N Line takes eye-catching design elements directly from the i30 N. At the front, the Elantra GT N Line has a lower front spoiler for increased aerodynamic efficiency and a unique N Line version of Hyundai’s Cascading Grille with a distinctive silver character line. At the side, blacked out side mirrors with turn signals, N Line badging, N Line 18-inch wheels and Michelin Pilot Sport 4 225/40 R18 summer tires change the profile of the car (summer tires are only available with the manual transmission). At the rear, the unique bumper fascia further accentuates the N theme. Standard interior trim for the Elantra GT N Line includes: Unique leather-wrapped perforated N steering wheel with metallic spokes N Line leather sport seats with N logo N Line gearshift features sporty metal accents and leather inserts A sporty instrument cluster and instrument panel accents Red stitching and accents differentiate the N Line from the standard Elantra GT N Line Sport Seats The N Line sports seats feature heated leather seating surfaces, N logos and red contrast stitching and side bolsters. They also keep the driver comfortable with power lumbar support and extendable seat cushions. Elantra GT N Line mechanical improvements include: ELANTRA GT N LINE DRIVING EXPERIENCE As with the exterior and interior, the driving experience has been further enhanced for N Line duty with new suspension and steering tuning, revised powertrain mounts and summer tires. Additionally, Elantra GT N Line’s multi-link independent rear suspension with larger front and rear brake rotors improves noise, vibration harshness and driving performance. The Elantra GT N Line includes a 1.6-liter turbocharged-GDI engine with six-speed manual transmission or an optional seven-speed DCT with larger steering wheel mounted paddle shifters. This drivetrain produces 201 horsepower and 195 lb.-ft. torque to meet performance and fuel efficiency needs. HYUNDAI SMART SENSE Advanced safety features contributed to a Top Safety Pick by IIHS for the 2019 Elantra GT. The following SmartSense features are available on the Elantra GT N Line models: Smart Cruise Control with start/stop capability Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist High Beam Assist Lane Keep Assist Driver Attention Warning INFOTAINMENT: AUDIO/VIDEO/NAVIGATION (AVN) 5.0 WITH HD TRAFFIC Available on the 2019 Elantra N Line is Hyundai’s AVN 5.0 infotainment system. This system features a fast processor for greater responsiveness, as well as an eight-inch screen. Using presets with AVN 5.0 is a snap because AM, FM and SiriusXM channels are combined on one screen. AVN 5.0 also includes HERE HD Traffic (without a subscription), bird’s eye view in Navigation maps and drivers get traffic flow and incident data without ever paying for a subscription via HD Radio. The Elantra GT N Line offers a technology package including the aforementioned feature as well as: Panoramic sunroof Eight-inch Navigation system (AVN 5.0) Blue Link Connected Car System Ventilated seats Power driver’s seat with lumbar support Infinity Premium Audio with seven speakers including subwoofer (deletes two-stage rear cargo floor) Wireless charging pad (Qi) Smart Cruise Control with start/stop capability Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist High Beam Assist Lane Keep Assist Driver Attention Warning Auto-dimming rearview mirror with Blue Link and HomeLink The Elantra GT N Line also includes a proximity key entry with electronic push button start as standard equipment. PRICING View full article
  11. It has been talked about for quite sometime, but Hyundai is making it official today at the Detroit Auto Show. The Korean automaker introduced their first N-Line model, the 2019 Elantra GT N-Line. N-Line brings forth a number of the exterior design cues and changes to suspension found on the standard N models to the basic models. For the Elantra GT, N-Line will be taking the place of the Sport. For the exterior, the N-Line brings a unique front grille, lower front spoiler, blacked-out side mirrors, and 18-inch N-Line wheels. Step inside to find a leather-wrapped steering wheel, leather sport seats with the ’N’ logo, updated instrument cluster, and red accents to help differentiate this model from the standard Elantra GT. Under the skin, Hyundai has given the Elantra GT N-Line’s suspension the once-over with stiffer springs, new engine mounts, thicker stability bars, and a set of Michelin PS4 summer tires if you get the six-speed manual. The seven-speed DCT sticks with a set of all-season Hankooks. Hyundai is retaining the turbocharged 1.6L four-cylinder with 201 horsepower and 195 pound-feet. Pricing for the 2019 Hyundai Elantra GT N-Line will begin at $24,185 for the manual and $25,285 for the DCT. Prices include an $885 destination charge. You can go to your nearest Hyundai dealer now to check them out. Gallery: 2019 Hyundai Elantra GT N-Line Source: Hyundai Hyundai Debuts First U.S. ‘N Line’ Model with 2019 Elantra GT Lineup N Line is an exciting new trim level in the Hyundai ‘N’ product portfolio N Line focuses on sporty design cues and refined powertrain/chassis dynamics FOUNTAIN VALLEY, Calif., Jan. 14, 2019 - Complementing the performance of Elantra GT is the announcement of the new 2019 Hyundai Elantra GT N Line trim. Elantra GT N Line is the first N Line model for the United States from Hyundai. N Line trims add sporty design elements and refined powertrain/chassis upgrades to existing Hyundai products. N Line is part of Hyundai’s ‘N’ product portfolio that includes the brand’s growing ultimate ‘N’ range of vehicles (Veloster N, i30 N, i30 Fastback N). The 2019 Elantra GT N Line replaces the 2018 Elantra GT Sport and signals more N Line models to come on future Hyundai products. Elantra GT N Line and the 2019 Elantra GT are on sale now. The 2019 Elantra GT continues to bring increased utility and enhanced driving dynamics to the compact hatchback segment. Elantra GT and the new N Line trim are poised to compete head-on with hatchback competitors and provide a fun-to-drive alternative to small CUVs. Elantra GT is the best of both worlds. 2019 Elantra GT Changes New Elantra GT N Line added to the lineup Elantra GT Sport is dropped from the lineup (replaced by the Elantra GT N Line) The entry-level Elantra GT is a carryover model Panoramic sunroof and leather seating surfaces added to 2019 Elantra GT Style Package “Hyundai N models satisfy the needs of performance-oriented enthusiasts with exclusive, custom-tuned powertrain and chassis applications,” said Thomas Schemera, executive vice president, Hyundai Motor Group’s Product Planning & Strategy Division.” “N Line is designed for those buyers craving N’s sporty styling cues coupled with performance-tuned suspension upgrades, all at compelling price points.” Design Elements The Elantra GT N Line takes eye-catching design elements directly from the i30 N. At the front, the Elantra GT N Line has a lower front spoiler for increased aerodynamic efficiency and a unique N Line version of Hyundai’s Cascading Grille with a distinctive silver character line. At the side, blacked out side mirrors with turn signals, N Line badging, N Line 18-inch wheels and Michelin Pilot Sport 4 225/40 R18 summer tires change the profile of the car (summer tires are only available with the manual transmission). At the rear, the unique bumper fascia further accentuates the N theme. Standard interior trim for the Elantra GT N Line includes: Unique leather-wrapped perforated N steering wheel with metallic spokes N Line leather sport seats with N logo N Line gearshift features sporty metal accents and leather inserts A sporty instrument cluster and instrument panel accents Red stitching and accents differentiate the N Line from the standard Elantra GT N Line Sport Seats The N Line sports seats feature heated leather seating surfaces, N logos and red contrast stitching and side bolsters. They also keep the driver comfortable with power lumbar support and extendable seat cushions. Elantra GT N Line mechanical improvements include: ELANTRA GT N LINE DRIVING EXPERIENCE As with the exterior and interior, the driving experience has been further enhanced for N Line duty with new suspension and steering tuning, revised powertrain mounts and summer tires. Additionally, Elantra GT N Line’s multi-link independent rear suspension with larger front and rear brake rotors improves noise, vibration harshness and driving performance. The Elantra GT N Line includes a 1.6-liter turbocharged-GDI engine with six-speed manual transmission or an optional seven-speed DCT with larger steering wheel mounted paddle shifters. This drivetrain produces 201 horsepower and 195 lb.-ft. torque to meet performance and fuel efficiency needs. HYUNDAI SMART SENSE Advanced safety features contributed to a Top Safety Pick by IIHS for the 2019 Elantra GT. The following SmartSense features are available on the Elantra GT N Line models: Smart Cruise Control with start/stop capability Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist High Beam Assist Lane Keep Assist Driver Attention Warning INFOTAINMENT: AUDIO/VIDEO/NAVIGATION (AVN) 5.0 WITH HD TRAFFIC Available on the 2019 Elantra N Line is Hyundai’s AVN 5.0 infotainment system. This system features a fast processor for greater responsiveness, as well as an eight-inch screen. Using presets with AVN 5.0 is a snap because AM, FM and SiriusXM channels are combined on one screen. AVN 5.0 also includes HERE HD Traffic (without a subscription), bird’s eye view in Navigation maps and drivers get traffic flow and incident data without ever paying for a subscription via HD Radio. The Elantra GT N Line offers a technology package including the aforementioned feature as well as: Panoramic sunroof Eight-inch Navigation system (AVN 5.0) Blue Link Connected Car System Ventilated seats Power driver’s seat with lumbar support Infinity Premium Audio with seven speakers including subwoofer (deletes two-stage rear cargo floor) Wireless charging pad (Qi) Smart Cruise Control with start/stop capability Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist High Beam Assist Lane Keep Assist Driver Attention Warning Auto-dimming rearview mirror with Blue Link and HomeLink The Elantra GT N Line also includes a proximity key entry with electronic push button start as standard equipment. PRICING
  12. Previous Page Next Page The RC F Track Edition won't have all of the spotlight to itself at Detroit next week. Lexus has revealed today the LC Convertible concept that will be rolling out on the auto show floor next week. Lexus is really stretching the definition of what it means to be a concept. To our eyes, the LC Convertible concept looks like it is ready to sit in the nearest Lexus showroom. Changes from the standard LC coupe include a slightly longer rear deck to house the power folding-top (we're thinking its a soft-top) and massive 22-inch alloy wheels. No mention of what's under the hood, but we're betting its the 5.0L V8 with 471 horsepower. While there are officially no plans to add a convertible version of the LC, statements from various company executives hint that it is being considered. “A production version of this concept would be exhilarating in many different ways. You would see its dynamic lines as you approach, hear its engine when you started it up and feel everything around you once on the road. It would engage the senses in a way that is unique and exciting every time you got behind the wheel,” said Tadao Mori, chief designer of the LC Convertible concept. Source: Lexus Lexus LC Convertible Concept Makes World Debut in Detroit Open top concept suggests future direction of LC flagship Dynamic design positions LC concept as a halo for the rest of the brand DETROIT (January 11, 2019) – Lexus shocked the automotive world in Detroit three years ago with the debut of the LC coupe. It was a testament to the brand’s new sense of creative ambition, but it was only just the beginning. Since then, the Lexus design team has been exploring the brand’s evolution and the latest result of those explorations will make its debut at the 2019 North American International Auto Show with the world premiere of the Lexus LC Convertible Concept. An open-air roadster that is an artful reflection of the LC coupe, the design goal of the Convertible Concept was the expression of “ultimate beauty”. From the rake of the windshield to the smooth contours of the rear decklid that houses the convertible top, every line on the LC Convertible concept was drawn to evoke an emotional response. A stunning design from every angle, the LC Convertible concept stands as an aspirational halo vehicle for the entire Lexus lineup. “This concept takes the unmistakable design of the LC coupe and reimagines it as a future convertible,” said Tadao Mori, chief designer of the LC Convertible concept. “It blends all the best aspects of the original coupe with the dynamic design of an open-air convertible.” Long, low and lean, the LC Convertible concept retains the athletic proportions of the LC coupe. It’s a shape that evolved naturally from the original LC design, yet still manages to stand on its own with a unique identity. It blends uniquely Japanese aesthetics with the promise of sensory satisfaction that only a convertible can provide. In addition to the visual appeal of the exterior sheetmetal, the LC Convertible concept attracts drivers and passengers alike with an allure of a cabin that caters to every need. From the comfort of its tailored seats to the feel of every switch and button, everything about this LC is designed to make even the most common trip feel like an occasion. Crisp white leather trim abounds while yellow accent stitching adds a pop of color without distracting from the subtle elegance of the overall design. More than just a grand tourer, the strong exterior lines of the LC Convertible concept reinforce its performance pedigree. Its short overhangs, 22-inch wheels and wide stance are all reminders of this car’s performance potential. “A production version of this concept would be exhilarating in many different ways. You would see its dynamic lines as you approach, hear its engine when you started it up and feel everything around you once on the road. It would engage the senses in a way that is unique and exciting every time you got behind the wheel,” said Mori-san. Previous Page Next Page View full article
  13. Previous Page Next Page The RC F Track Edition won't have all of the spotlight to itself at Detroit next week. Lexus has revealed today the LC Convertible concept that will be rolling out on the auto show floor next week. Lexus is really stretching the definition of what it means to be a concept. To our eyes, the LC Convertible concept looks like it is ready to sit in the nearest Lexus showroom. Changes from the standard LC coupe include a slightly longer rear deck to house the power folding-top (we're thinking its a soft-top) and massive 22-inch alloy wheels. No mention of what's under the hood, but we're betting its the 5.0L V8 with 471 horsepower. While there are officially no plans to add a convertible version of the LC, statements from various company executives hint that it is being considered. “A production version of this concept would be exhilarating in many different ways. You would see its dynamic lines as you approach, hear its engine when you started it up and feel everything around you once on the road. It would engage the senses in a way that is unique and exciting every time you got behind the wheel,” said Tadao Mori, chief designer of the LC Convertible concept. Source: Lexus Lexus LC Convertible Concept Makes World Debut in Detroit Open top concept suggests future direction of LC flagship Dynamic design positions LC concept as a halo for the rest of the brand DETROIT (January 11, 2019) – Lexus shocked the automotive world in Detroit three years ago with the debut of the LC coupe. It was a testament to the brand’s new sense of creative ambition, but it was only just the beginning. Since then, the Lexus design team has been exploring the brand’s evolution and the latest result of those explorations will make its debut at the 2019 North American International Auto Show with the world premiere of the Lexus LC Convertible Concept. An open-air roadster that is an artful reflection of the LC coupe, the design goal of the Convertible Concept was the expression of “ultimate beauty”. From the rake of the windshield to the smooth contours of the rear decklid that houses the convertible top, every line on the LC Convertible concept was drawn to evoke an emotional response. A stunning design from every angle, the LC Convertible concept stands as an aspirational halo vehicle for the entire Lexus lineup. “This concept takes the unmistakable design of the LC coupe and reimagines it as a future convertible,” said Tadao Mori, chief designer of the LC Convertible concept. “It blends all the best aspects of the original coupe with the dynamic design of an open-air convertible.” Long, low and lean, the LC Convertible concept retains the athletic proportions of the LC coupe. It’s a shape that evolved naturally from the original LC design, yet still manages to stand on its own with a unique identity. It blends uniquely Japanese aesthetics with the promise of sensory satisfaction that only a convertible can provide. In addition to the visual appeal of the exterior sheetmetal, the LC Convertible concept attracts drivers and passengers alike with an allure of a cabin that caters to every need. From the comfort of its tailored seats to the feel of every switch and button, everything about this LC is designed to make even the most common trip feel like an occasion. Crisp white leather trim abounds while yellow accent stitching adds a pop of color without distracting from the subtle elegance of the overall design. More than just a grand tourer, the strong exterior lines of the LC Convertible concept reinforce its performance pedigree. Its short overhangs, 22-inch wheels and wide stance are all reminders of this car’s performance potential. “A production version of this concept would be exhilarating in many different ways. You would see its dynamic lines as you approach, hear its engine when you started it up and feel everything around you once on the road. It would engage the senses in a way that is unique and exciting every time you got behind the wheel,” said Mori-san. Previous Page Next Page
  14. Nissan had originally planned on debuting their long-range variant of the Leaf EV back at the LA Auto Show. But with the arrest of chairman Carlos Ghosn, plans were scrapped and we were left wondering when the long-range Leaf would debut. Last night at the Consumer Electronics Show, Nissan unveiled the long-range variant known as the Leaf Plus - other parts of the world will know the model as the Leaf e+. The plus signifies a larger battery pack - 62 kWh. This boosts range from 150 to 226 miles. Along with the bigger battery, Nissan has bumped up the output of the electric motor from 147 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque to 215 and 250 respectively. For recharging, Nissan developed a faster 70 kW charging system that will allow the Leaf e+ have quick charge times similar to the standard Leaf. A 60 percent recharge (about 90 miles) takes about 30 minutes with the standard Leaf. That could mean a 30 minute quick charge in the Leaf Plus could net you about 135 miles. No mention of how long it takes for a charge on 120 or 240V chargers. No word on pricing, but we're expecting a sizeable bump when compared to the standard Leaf. The Plus version arrives at dealers this spring in U.S. Gallery: 2019 Nissan Leaf e+/Leaf Plus Source: Nissan Nissan LEAF e+ joins world’s best-selling electric vehicle family New powertrain option offers expanded range and power LAS VEGAS, Nevada – Nissan today unveiled the Nissan LEAF e+, further broadening the appeal of the world's best-selling electric car*1 by offering a new powertrain with additional power and range. The "e+" refers to the increased energy density of the model's 62 kWh battery pack and the higher output of its powertrain. The new powertrain adds to the car's range by approximately 40 percent, with EPA-estimated range of up to 226 miles, ensuring that there's a Nissan LEAF to meet the driving needs of a wider range of customers. "The new Nissan LEAF e+ offers all of the style, convenience and electric vehicle benefits that have helped make LEAF the best-selling electric vehicle in the world, plus even more driving excitement, range, power and choice," said Denis Le Vot, senior vice president and chairman, Nissan North America. "Customers now have a selection of powertrains and models to best suit their driving needs." The LEAF e+ will be sold under the LEAF PLUS Series in the US and Canada, with each trim level receiving its own designation of S PLUS, SV PLUS and SL PLUS. Globally, the vehicle will be referred to as the Nissan LEAF e+. More than 380,000 Nissan LEAF vehicles have been sold globally since the 100 percent electric model first went on sale in 2010, with over 128,000 sold in the US. Equipped with advanced technologies including ProPILOT Assist semi-autonomous driving system and e-Pedal mode for one-pedal driving, the LEAF embodies Nissan Intelligent Mobility, the company's vision for changing how cars are powered, driven and integrated into society. "Nissan Intelligent Mobility is at the core of everything we do and the new Nissan LEAF e+ takes this vision even further," Le Vot continued. "EV's will play a significant part in our product lineup as we move forward and will lead the way to providing an efficient and sustainable future for the world." Having pioneered mass-market electric cars with the LEAF, Nissan is continuing to promote alternative vehicle transportation. The LEAF family of cars play a vital role in Nissan's efforts to integrate electric vehicles and energy systems into customer's lives – creating an "EV ecosystem." Among these efforts is Nissan Energy, the company's initiative for its electric vehicles to easily connect with energy systems to charge their batteries, power homes and businesses, or feed energy back to power grids, as well as new efforts to reuse batteries.*2 The Nissan LEAF PLUS Series is scheduled to join the LEAF at Nissan dealerships in Japan in January 2019. U.S. sales are expected to begin in spring 2019 and European sales to commence in mid-2019. Nissan Intelligent Mobility The Nissan LEAF e+ represents a step forward in each of the three key areas of the Nissan Intelligent Mobility vision: Intelligent Power, Intelligent Driving and Intelligent Integration. Nissan Intelligent Power: increased range and performance The Nissan LEAF e+ features a new version of the LEAF's revolutionary electric powertrain, delivering excellent energy efficiency and robust torque and power output. While the current LEAF meets the needs of many customers with its driving range of EPA-estimated 150 miles, the LEAF e+ offers an EPA-estimated range of up to 226 miles, allowing customers the ability to do more between charges.*3 The high-capacity battery and more powerful, 160 kW motor in the LEAF e+ combine to produce 45 percent more power and 250 lb-ft (340 Nm) of torque, enabling faster acceleration when driving at high speeds. Accelerating from 50 mph (80 kph) to 75 mph (120 kph) is nearly 13 percent quicker. This allows the LEAF e+ to confidently pass slower-moving vehicles, exit corners faster and more seamlessly, and merge easily with fast-moving traffic. The top speed has increased by approximately 10 percent for comfortable cruising. Thanks to the available new 70 kW (100 kW peak) Quick Charging system, the 2019 Nissan LEAF e+ can charge more efficiently than ever.*3 Based on early testing, Nissan LEAF e+ owners can expect similar charging times when hooked up to a 100 kW charger as current LEAF owners do with a 50 kW charger, despite a 55 percent larger battery storage capacity. Even with a 25 percent increase in energy density and the increase in energy storage capacity, the LEAF e+ battery pack is almost the same size and configuration as the pack in the Nissan LEAF. Other than a 5-millimeter increase in overall height (16-inch wheels), the car's exterior and interior dimensions are unchanged. Because ownership satisfaction and peace of mind are pivotal for all Nissan LEAF owners, the battery limited warranty of 8 years/160,000 km (whichever occurs first) is standard for all versions. Nissan Intelligent Driving: innovative ProPILOT Assist features and smooth e-Pedal operation Playing a leading role in Nissan Intelligent Driving is ProPILOT Assist, an in-lane semi-autonomous driving technology that can automatically adjust the distance to the vehicle ahead, using a speed preset by the driver (between about 18 mph and 62 mph). ProPILOT Assist can also help the driver steer and keep the vehicle centered in its lane. If the car in front stops, ProPILOT Assist can automatically apply the brakes to bring the vehicle to a full halt if necessary. After coming to a full stop, the vehicle can remain in place even if the driver's foot is off the brake. If traffic restarts, the car will resume driving when the driver touches the steering wheel-mounted ProPILOT Assist switch again or lightly presses the accelerator to activate the system. All these functions can reduce stress when driving on the highway in both heavy and fast-moving traffic. Further enhancing the LEAF's driving experience is e-Pedal, which allows the driver to start, accelerate, decelerate and stop using only the accelerator pedal.*4 To match the LEAF e+'s additional power and increased mass, Nissan has reprogrammed the e-Pedal software for smoother operation and enhanced pedal feedback, especially for operation in reverse, and for smoother and more rapid deceleration, making it easier to stop the car using e-Pedal, even when backing up. In addition to ProPILOT Assist and e-Pedal, every LEAF is equipped with advanced safety technologies including Intelligent Lane Intervention, Lane Departure Warning, Intelligent Emergency Braking, Blind Spot Warning, Rear Cross Traffic Alert and Intelligent Around View Monitor with moving object detection. Nissan Intelligent Integration: updated interface, larger display and convenient updates The new Nissan LEAF links drivers, vehicles and communities through its convenient graphic-based Human Machine Interface. It allows the owner to use the NissanConnect smartphone app to perform tasks such as monitoring the vehicle's state of charge, scheduling charging to benefit from optimal energy tariffs, finding the nearest charging station, and heating or cooling the car before getting in. New for the LEAF e+ (on North American and EU models) is a larger, thin-film transistor, full-color 8-inch display, with an updated navigation system that can be linked to a compatible smartphone. The display features smartphone-like operation including swiping, scrolling and tapping. Applications, maps and firmware are updated over the air with the simple touch of a button, instead of having to manually update by USB or at a Nissan dealership.*5 Other new features include Door-to-Door Navigation, which syncs the vehicle's navigation system with your compatible smartphone for seamless driving and walking directions. The Connections feature allows any of the car's passengers to quickly and easily connect to a device within the vehicle.*6 Integration goes beyond what's in the vehicle and now includes Nissan Energy, the company's existing and future initiatives for Vehicle-to-Grid, Vehicle-to-Building and Vehicle-to-Home connections, generating solar electricity, as well as reusing batteries. With Nissan Energy, LEAF vehicles are part of a larger electric vehicle ecosystem.*2 Sleek, modern design One of the most eye-catching exterior elements of the new Nissan LEAF is the car's sleek, streamlined silhouette, which maximizes aerodynamic efficiency. The car's bold fascia features Nissan's signature V-Motion grille with blue 3D mesh. The car's streamlined profile gives it a sporty look, while the rear features a distinctive tail light design. The LEAF e+ carries over most of the LEAF's design. Subtle clues to its e+ designation include a revised front fascia with blue highlights and an "e+" logo plate on the underside of the charge port lid. There will also be a rear trim level badge for U.S. and Canada which will be designated as S PLUS, SV PLUS and SL PLUS. Like the standard model, the LEAF e+ boasts a spacious, highly functional interior with a quality, high-tech feel. The combination of premium materials throughout the cabin befits a luxury vehicle. Vibrant blue contrast stitching for the steering wheel, seats and instrument panel accentuate the car as a Nissan electric vehicle. Pricing North America pricing will be announced closer to on-sale date. View full article
  15. Nissan had originally planned on debuting their long-range variant of the Leaf EV back at the LA Auto Show. But with the arrest of chairman Carlos Ghosn, plans were scrapped and we were left wondering when the long-range Leaf would debut. Last night at the Consumer Electronics Show, Nissan unveiled the long-range variant known as the Leaf Plus - other parts of the world will know the model as the Leaf e+. The plus signifies a larger battery pack - 62 kWh. This boosts range from 150 to 226 miles. Along with the bigger battery, Nissan has bumped up the output of the electric motor from 147 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque to 215 and 250 respectively. For recharging, Nissan developed a faster 70 kW charging system that will allow the Leaf e+ have quick charge times similar to the standard Leaf. A 60 percent recharge (about 90 miles) takes about 30 minutes with the standard Leaf. That could mean a 30 minute quick charge in the Leaf Plus could net you about 135 miles. No mention of how long it takes for a charge on 120 or 240V chargers. No word on pricing, but we're expecting a sizeable bump when compared to the standard Leaf. The Plus version arrives at dealers this spring in U.S. Gallery: 2019 Nissan Leaf e+/Leaf Plus Source: Nissan Nissan LEAF e+ joins world’s best-selling electric vehicle family New powertrain option offers expanded range and power LAS VEGAS, Nevada – Nissan today unveiled the Nissan LEAF e+, further broadening the appeal of the world's best-selling electric car*1 by offering a new powertrain with additional power and range. The "e+" refers to the increased energy density of the model's 62 kWh battery pack and the higher output of its powertrain. The new powertrain adds to the car's range by approximately 40 percent, with EPA-estimated range of up to 226 miles, ensuring that there's a Nissan LEAF to meet the driving needs of a wider range of customers. "The new Nissan LEAF e+ offers all of the style, convenience and electric vehicle benefits that have helped make LEAF the best-selling electric vehicle in the world, plus even more driving excitement, range, power and choice," said Denis Le Vot, senior vice president and chairman, Nissan North America. "Customers now have a selection of powertrains and models to best suit their driving needs." The LEAF e+ will be sold under the LEAF PLUS Series in the US and Canada, with each trim level receiving its own designation of S PLUS, SV PLUS and SL PLUS. Globally, the vehicle will be referred to as the Nissan LEAF e+. More than 380,000 Nissan LEAF vehicles have been sold globally since the 100 percent electric model first went on sale in 2010, with over 128,000 sold in the US. Equipped with advanced technologies including ProPILOT Assist semi-autonomous driving system and e-Pedal mode for one-pedal driving, the LEAF embodies Nissan Intelligent Mobility, the company's vision for changing how cars are powered, driven and integrated into society. "Nissan Intelligent Mobility is at the core of everything we do and the new Nissan LEAF e+ takes this vision even further," Le Vot continued. "EV's will play a significant part in our product lineup as we move forward and will lead the way to providing an efficient and sustainable future for the world." Having pioneered mass-market electric cars with the LEAF, Nissan is continuing to promote alternative vehicle transportation. The LEAF family of cars play a vital role in Nissan's efforts to integrate electric vehicles and energy systems into customer's lives – creating an "EV ecosystem." Among these efforts is Nissan Energy, the company's initiative for its electric vehicles to easily connect with energy systems to charge their batteries, power homes and businesses, or feed energy back to power grids, as well as new efforts to reuse batteries.*2 The Nissan LEAF PLUS Series is scheduled to join the LEAF at Nissan dealerships in Japan in January 2019. U.S. sales are expected to begin in spring 2019 and European sales to commence in mid-2019. Nissan Intelligent Mobility The Nissan LEAF e+ represents a step forward in each of the three key areas of the Nissan Intelligent Mobility vision: Intelligent Power, Intelligent Driving and Intelligent Integration. Nissan Intelligent Power: increased range and performance The Nissan LEAF e+ features a new version of the LEAF's revolutionary electric powertrain, delivering excellent energy efficiency and robust torque and power output. While the current LEAF meets the needs of many customers with its driving range of EPA-estimated 150 miles, the LEAF e+ offers an EPA-estimated range of up to 226 miles, allowing customers the ability to do more between charges.*3 The high-capacity battery and more powerful, 160 kW motor in the LEAF e+ combine to produce 45 percent more power and 250 lb-ft (340 Nm) of torque, enabling faster acceleration when driving at high speeds. Accelerating from 50 mph (80 kph) to 75 mph (120 kph) is nearly 13 percent quicker. This allows the LEAF e+ to confidently pass slower-moving vehicles, exit corners faster and more seamlessly, and merge easily with fast-moving traffic. The top speed has increased by approximately 10 percent for comfortable cruising. Thanks to the available new 70 kW (100 kW peak) Quick Charging system, the 2019 Nissan LEAF e+ can charge more efficiently than ever.*3 Based on early testing, Nissan LEAF e+ owners can expect similar charging times when hooked up to a 100 kW charger as current LEAF owners do with a 50 kW charger, despite a 55 percent larger battery storage capacity. Even with a 25 percent increase in energy density and the increase in energy storage capacity, the LEAF e+ battery pack is almost the same size and configuration as the pack in the Nissan LEAF. Other than a 5-millimeter increase in overall height (16-inch wheels), the car's exterior and interior dimensions are unchanged. Because ownership satisfaction and peace of mind are pivotal for all Nissan LEAF owners, the battery limited warranty of 8 years/160,000 km (whichever occurs first) is standard for all versions. Nissan Intelligent Driving: innovative ProPILOT Assist features and smooth e-Pedal operation Playing a leading role in Nissan Intelligent Driving is ProPILOT Assist, an in-lane semi-autonomous driving technology that can automatically adjust the distance to the vehicle ahead, using a speed preset by the driver (between about 18 mph and 62 mph). ProPILOT Assist can also help the driver steer and keep the vehicle centered in its lane. If the car in front stops, ProPILOT Assist can automatically apply the brakes to bring the vehicle to a full halt if necessary. After coming to a full stop, the vehicle can remain in place even if the driver's foot is off the brake. If traffic restarts, the car will resume driving when the driver touches the steering wheel-mounted ProPILOT Assist switch again or lightly presses the accelerator to activate the system. All these functions can reduce stress when driving on the highway in both heavy and fast-moving traffic. Further enhancing the LEAF's driving experience is e-Pedal, which allows the driver to start, accelerate, decelerate and stop using only the accelerator pedal.*4 To match the LEAF e+'s additional power and increased mass, Nissan has reprogrammed the e-Pedal software for smoother operation and enhanced pedal feedback, especially for operation in reverse, and for smoother and more rapid deceleration, making it easier to stop the car using e-Pedal, even when backing up. In addition to ProPILOT Assist and e-Pedal, every LEAF is equipped with advanced safety technologies including Intelligent Lane Intervention, Lane Departure Warning, Intelligent Emergency Braking, Blind Spot Warning, Rear Cross Traffic Alert and Intelligent Around View Monitor with moving object detection. Nissan Intelligent Integration: updated interface, larger display and convenient updates The new Nissan LEAF links drivers, vehicles and communities through its convenient graphic-based Human Machine Interface. It allows the owner to use the NissanConnect smartphone app to perform tasks such as monitoring the vehicle's state of charge, scheduling charging to benefit from optimal energy tariffs, finding the nearest charging station, and heating or cooling the car before getting in. New for the LEAF e+ (on North American and EU models) is a larger, thin-film transistor, full-color 8-inch display, with an updated navigation system that can be linked to a compatible smartphone. The display features smartphone-like operation including swiping, scrolling and tapping. Applications, maps and firmware are updated over the air with the simple touch of a button, instead of having to manually update by USB or at a Nissan dealership.*5 Other new features include Door-to-Door Navigation, which syncs the vehicle's navigation system with your compatible smartphone for seamless driving and walking directions. The Connections feature allows any of the car's passengers to quickly and easily connect to a device within the vehicle.*6 Integration goes beyond what's in the vehicle and now includes Nissan Energy, the company's existing and future initiatives for Vehicle-to-Grid, Vehicle-to-Building and Vehicle-to-Home connections, generating solar electricity, as well as reusing batteries. With Nissan Energy, LEAF vehicles are part of a larger electric vehicle ecosystem.*2 Sleek, modern design One of the most eye-catching exterior elements of the new Nissan LEAF is the car's sleek, streamlined silhouette, which maximizes aerodynamic efficiency. The car's bold fascia features Nissan's signature V-Motion grille with blue 3D mesh. The car's streamlined profile gives it a sporty look, while the rear features a distinctive tail light design. The LEAF e+ carries over most of the LEAF's design. Subtle clues to its e+ designation include a revised front fascia with blue highlights and an "e+" logo plate on the underside of the charge port lid. There will also be a rear trim level badge for U.S. and Canada which will be designated as S PLUS, SV PLUS and SL PLUS. Like the standard model, the LEAF e+ boasts a spacious, highly functional interior with a quality, high-tech feel. The combination of premium materials throughout the cabin befits a luxury vehicle. Vibrant blue contrast stitching for the steering wheel, seats and instrument panel accentuate the car as a Nissan electric vehicle. Pricing North America pricing will be announced closer to on-sale date.
  16. Mercedes-Benz has announced pricing for most of the upcoming AMG GT four-door expected to arrive in the first half of next year. The GT 63 will set you back $137,495, while the more powerful GT 63 S begins at $159,995. Both prices include a $995 destination charge. The 63 means a twin-turbo 4.4L V8 resides under the hood. The standard GT 63 produces 577 horsepower and 590 pound-feet of torque. Move up to the S and the V8 pumps out 630 horsepower and 664 pound-feet of torque. Both models come paired with a nine-speed automatic and 4Matic all-wheel drive. It's clear that Mercedes is aiming the GT four-door at the likes of the Porsche Panamera Turbo and Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid. Panamera Turbo: 550 horsepower and 567 pound-feet, $151,500 Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid: 680 horsepower and 626 pound-feet, $186,200 The only model Mercedes hasn't announced pricing for is the GT 53. This model pairs a 3.0L twin-turbo inline-six engine with a mild-hybrid system to produce a total output of 429 horsepower and 384 pound-feet. That will be revealed at a later date. Source: Mercedes-Benz Mercedes-AMG GT 4-Door Coupe V8 models to start at $136,500 Pricing announced for all-new Mercedes-AMG GT 4-Door Coupe All-new, high-performance, 4-Door Coupe expands AMG GT family and offers unparalleled levels of performance and versatility Dec 17, 2018 – Atlanta: Mercedes-Benz USA today announced pricing for the V8 variants of the highly anticipated new Mercedes-AMG GT 4-Door Coupe. The Mercedes- AMG GT 63, powered by a handcrafted AMG 4.0-liter V8 biturbo that produces 577 hp and 590 lb-ft peak torque, starts at $136,500*. The more powerful Mercedes-AMG GT 63 S produces 630 hp and 664 lb-ft peak torque and starts at $159,000*. Additional standard equipment for the GT 63 S includes the AMG Performance Exhaust System, the AMG Dynamic Plus Package including Active Engine Mounts, RACE Mode, Drift Mode, and AMG Drive Unit steering wheel controls. The Mercedes-AMG GT 63 and Mercedes-AMG GT 63 S will arrive in U.S. dealers in the first half of 2019. Pricing for the GT 53 variant will be announced at a later date. Drawing directly from the successes of the legendary SLS and AMG GT, the new Mercedes-AMG GT 4-Door Coupe is the third vehicle developed independently by AMG, and its first unique four-door sports car. Engineering highlights of the new Mercedes-AMG GT 4-Door Coupe include Active Rear- Wheel Steering, facilitating high agility and stability characteristics, standard electronically deployable rear spoiler, providing optimal rear downforce at a variety of speeds, AMG electronic rear-axle limited-slip differential, and specially adapted AMG Ride Control Sport Suspension based on Air Body Control. This expansion of the AMG GT family opens up the segment to those looking for a vehicle that combines the impressive racetrack dynamics of the two-door AMG GT sports car with everyday practicality, offering ample space for four passengers, with the unparalleled level of performance expected from Mercedes-AMG. *Prices excludes $995 destination and delivery charge. View full article
  17. Mercedes-Benz has announced pricing for most of the upcoming AMG GT four-door expected to arrive in the first half of next year. The GT 63 will set you back $137,495, while the more powerful GT 63 S begins at $159,995. Both prices include a $995 destination charge. The 63 means a twin-turbo 4.4L V8 resides under the hood. The standard GT 63 produces 577 horsepower and 590 pound-feet of torque. Move up to the S and the V8 pumps out 630 horsepower and 664 pound-feet of torque. Both models come paired with a nine-speed automatic and 4Matic all-wheel drive. It's clear that Mercedes is aiming the GT four-door at the likes of the Porsche Panamera Turbo and Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid. Panamera Turbo: 550 horsepower and 567 pound-feet, $151,500 Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid: 680 horsepower and 626 pound-feet, $186,200 The only model Mercedes hasn't announced pricing for is the GT 53. This model pairs a 3.0L twin-turbo inline-six engine with a mild-hybrid system to produce a total output of 429 horsepower and 384 pound-feet. That will be revealed at a later date. Source: Mercedes-Benz Mercedes-AMG GT 4-Door Coupe V8 models to start at $136,500 Pricing announced for all-new Mercedes-AMG GT 4-Door Coupe All-new, high-performance, 4-Door Coupe expands AMG GT family and offers unparalleled levels of performance and versatility Dec 17, 2018 – Atlanta: Mercedes-Benz USA today announced pricing for the V8 variants of the highly anticipated new Mercedes-AMG GT 4-Door Coupe. The Mercedes- AMG GT 63, powered by a handcrafted AMG 4.0-liter V8 biturbo that produces 577 hp and 590 lb-ft peak torque, starts at $136,500*. The more powerful Mercedes-AMG GT 63 S produces 630 hp and 664 lb-ft peak torque and starts at $159,000*. Additional standard equipment for the GT 63 S includes the AMG Performance Exhaust System, the AMG Dynamic Plus Package including Active Engine Mounts, RACE Mode, Drift Mode, and AMG Drive Unit steering wheel controls. The Mercedes-AMG GT 63 and Mercedes-AMG GT 63 S will arrive in U.S. dealers in the first half of 2019. Pricing for the GT 53 variant will be announced at a later date. Drawing directly from the successes of the legendary SLS and AMG GT, the new Mercedes-AMG GT 4-Door Coupe is the third vehicle developed independently by AMG, and its first unique four-door sports car. Engineering highlights of the new Mercedes-AMG GT 4-Door Coupe include Active Rear- Wheel Steering, facilitating high agility and stability characteristics, standard electronically deployable rear spoiler, providing optimal rear downforce at a variety of speeds, AMG electronic rear-axle limited-slip differential, and specially adapted AMG Ride Control Sport Suspension based on Air Body Control. This expansion of the AMG GT family opens up the segment to those looking for a vehicle that combines the impressive racetrack dynamics of the two-door AMG GT sports car with everyday practicality, offering ample space for four passengers, with the unparalleled level of performance expected from Mercedes-AMG. *Prices excludes $995 destination and delivery charge.
  18. Back in March, we reported that Lincoln showed it dealers a Continental with rear-hinged suicide doors and announced plans to build it. We didn't have any details of when this model would launch or why - our speculation at the time was Lincoln showing some commitment to its car lineup. Today, Lincoln has revealed the suicide door version of the Continental. The 2019 Continental 80th Anniversary Coach Door Edition pays tribute to the introduction of the Continental nameplate and one of its most iconic features - the suicide-hinged doors that were first offered in 1961. Lincoln teamed with Cabot Coach Builders in Massachusetts to produce this special edition model. Lincoln did all of the engineering, metalwork and everything else required for this vehicle. The base vehicle and necessary parts are sent to Cabot which will produce the model. It begins with the Continental being stretched out six-inches. Aside from giving the space required for the suicide doors, it also makes for a more spacious rear seat, complete with a pass-through console featuring a stowable tray table and wireless charging pad. Lincoln says the changes only add about 100 to 150 pounds to the overall weight. Power will come from the twin-turbo 3.0L V6 with 400 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque. Lincoln is only planning on building 80 Continental 80th Anniversary Coach Door Editions for the 2019 model year, with pricing expected to begin above the $100,000 mark. The automaker did mention that it is planning to make a "limited" number of 2020 model year vehicles, though no number was given. If the rumor about the current Continental going away in next few years proves to be true, this isn't a bad way to give it a final curtain call. Gallery: 2019 Lincoln Continental 80th Anniversary Coach Door Edition Source: Lincoln 80th Anniversary Lincoln Continental Arrives In Style With Iconic Center-Opening Doors Introduction of Lincoln Continental 80th Anniversary Coach Door Edition pays homage to the iconic style of the 1960s This limited-edition Continental offers nod to heritage while providing refinements for today’s discerning luxury client, such as an elegantly crafted rear-seat pass-through console with stowable tray table and tablet holder Limited run of 80 units, honoring Continental’s 80th anniversary, will be produced for the 2019 model year, each personalized with a unique badge; Continental 80th Anniversary Coach Door Edition is scheduled to arrive next summer NEW YORK, Dec. 17, 2018 – “Notice the doors,” the vintage advertisement for the Lincoln Continental began. “And notice how they open. From the center, to make everyone’s entrances graceful.” With that, an enduring automotive design legend was born – the coach doors – or center-opening doors, which conveyed elegance and a touch of Hollywood glamour. Today, six decades later, Lincoln is bringing back a modern version of these iconic center-opening doors with the introduction of the Lincoln Continental 80th Anniversary Coach Door Edition. A limited run of just 80 units will be produced. The Continental Coach Door Edition arrives as Lincoln is riding a new wave of product momentum. Following the reveal of the all-new Lincoln Aviator at the Los Angeles Auto Show, this 80th Anniversary Continental celebrates the heritage of one of America’s most beloved luxury sedans. “This Lincoln Continental echoes a design that captured the hearts of car enthusiasts around the world,” says Joy Falotico, president, The Lincoln Motor Company. “It’s something bespoke only Lincoln can offer in a thoroughly modern way.” Glamour and allure Lincoln Continental began as a custom luxury vehicle hand-crafted by chief stylist Eugene T. Gregorie for Edsel Ford in 1939. Years later, the 1961 Continental introduced the unique center-opening doors and a chrome-accented upper shoulder line that established a signature look for Lincoln. “The center-opening doors became synonymous with the Lincoln Continental, even though they were only featured primarily in the ’60s,” says David Woodhouse, design director, The Lincoln Motor Company. “But they struck such a chord that they’re still remembered so fondly today.” Woodhouse says the element is both dramatic and distinctive. “It was truly a watershed moment for us in terms of iconic design,” he adds. Each of the 80 units in this limited production for 2019 will have a special door sill plate featuring its number in the run. A limited number of additional Continental Coach Door Edition sedans will be available as well for the 2020 model year. The Lincoln Continental 80th Anniversary Coach Door provides the refinements and advanced features today’s luxury vehicle client desires. From the doors to the seating to the Lincoln Black Label interior, no detail has been overlooked. Rear-seat amenities are uniquely tailored, featuring an elegantly crafted pass-through console that offers a stowable tray table with tablet holder and wireless charging pad. Rear-seat passengers will be more comfortable than ever. The six inches added to the car’s wheelbase allow for the placement of the larger coach doors, while also delivering best-in-class second-row legroom. Celebrating form and function The center-opening coach doors are a celebration of both form and function. Woodhouse says they showcase the interior of an exceptionally beautiful vehicle. The 90-degree opening makes for easy, graceful entry and exit by allowing passengers to turn to sit to enter, then exit the car by stepping forward and out. “People appreciate elegance and glamour,” says Woodhouse. “And they want the easiest way to get in and out of a vehicle. These doors answer to both.” The car is meticulously crafted inside and out, integrating technologies that both assist and entertain. This Continental senses a driver’s approach and lights up with Lincoln’s trademark sequential welcoming embrace. Its award-winning Head-Up display contributes to a custom driving experience by letting drivers choose what information is projected onto the windshield display. The feature is so innovative that it is visible even with ambient lighting and when the driver is wearing polarized sunglasses. In keeping with the spirit of arriving in style, the 2019 Lincoln Continental’s innovative electronic door system allows doors to be unlatched in a smooth, single motion, making entry and exit both effortless and quiet. With Lincoln’s exclusive 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged V6 engine, Continental delivers the power and performance today’s luxury clients expect with an impressive 400 horsepower and 400 lb.-ft. of torque. Three Drive Modes, including Normal, Sport and Comfort, allow clients to personalize their driving experience. To complement its smooth, powerful drive, this special edition features Perfect Position seats that adjust 30 ways, plus Active Noise Control for a quiet interior. A Revel® Ultima Audio experience allows drivers to select one of three listening modes, including stereo, audience and on-stage. Continental clients will have their choice of Lincoln Black Label themes, the brand’s most personalized level of luxury, including Chalet and Thoroughbred. Lincoln Black Label not only provides the highest quality of materials in customized designer themes, it also offers a host of membership privileges. These include annual vehicle detailing, anytime carwashes, and access to a selection of restaurants where noted chefs will provide a curated dining experience. This limited-edition model is available to order now through Lincoln Black Label dealers. The Lincoln Continental 80th Anniversary Coach Door Edition is set to arrive next summer. View full article
  19. William Maley

    2019 Lincoln Continental Adds Suicide Doors

    Back in March, we reported that Lincoln showed it dealers a Continental with rear-hinged suicide doors and announced plans to build it. We didn't have any details of when this model would launch or why - our speculation at the time was Lincoln showing some commitment to its car lineup. Today, Lincoln has revealed the suicide door version of the Continental. The 2019 Continental 80th Anniversary Coach Door Edition pays tribute to the introduction of the Continental nameplate and one of its most iconic features - the suicide-hinged doors that were first offered in 1961. Lincoln teamed with Cabot Coach Builders in Massachusetts to produce this special edition model. Lincoln did all of the engineering, metalwork and everything else required for this vehicle. The base vehicle and necessary parts are sent to Cabot which will produce the model. It begins with the Continental being stretched out six-inches. Aside from giving the space required for the suicide doors, it also makes for a more spacious rear seat, complete with a pass-through console featuring a stowable tray table and wireless charging pad. Lincoln says the changes only add about 100 to 150 pounds to the overall weight. Power will come from the twin-turbo 3.0L V6 with 400 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque. Lincoln is only planning on building 80 Continental 80th Anniversary Coach Door Editions for the 2019 model year, with pricing expected to begin above the $100,000 mark. The automaker did mention that it is planning to make a "limited" number of 2020 model year vehicles, though no number was given. If the rumor about the current Continental going away in next few years proves to be true, this isn't a bad way to give it a final curtain call. Gallery: 2019 Lincoln Continental 80th Anniversary Coach Door Edition Source: Lincoln 80th Anniversary Lincoln Continental Arrives In Style With Iconic Center-Opening Doors Introduction of Lincoln Continental 80th Anniversary Coach Door Edition pays homage to the iconic style of the 1960s This limited-edition Continental offers nod to heritage while providing refinements for today’s discerning luxury client, such as an elegantly crafted rear-seat pass-through console with stowable tray table and tablet holder Limited run of 80 units, honoring Continental’s 80th anniversary, will be produced for the 2019 model year, each personalized with a unique badge; Continental 80th Anniversary Coach Door Edition is scheduled to arrive next summer NEW YORK, Dec. 17, 2018 – “Notice the doors,” the vintage advertisement for the Lincoln Continental began. “And notice how they open. From the center, to make everyone’s entrances graceful.” With that, an enduring automotive design legend was born – the coach doors – or center-opening doors, which conveyed elegance and a touch of Hollywood glamour. Today, six decades later, Lincoln is bringing back a modern version of these iconic center-opening doors with the introduction of the Lincoln Continental 80th Anniversary Coach Door Edition. A limited run of just 80 units will be produced. The Continental Coach Door Edition arrives as Lincoln is riding a new wave of product momentum. Following the reveal of the all-new Lincoln Aviator at the Los Angeles Auto Show, this 80th Anniversary Continental celebrates the heritage of one of America’s most beloved luxury sedans. “This Lincoln Continental echoes a design that captured the hearts of car enthusiasts around the world,” says Joy Falotico, president, The Lincoln Motor Company. “It’s something bespoke only Lincoln can offer in a thoroughly modern way.” Glamour and allure Lincoln Continental began as a custom luxury vehicle hand-crafted by chief stylist Eugene T. Gregorie for Edsel Ford in 1939. Years later, the 1961 Continental introduced the unique center-opening doors and a chrome-accented upper shoulder line that established a signature look for Lincoln. “The center-opening doors became synonymous with the Lincoln Continental, even though they were only featured primarily in the ’60s,” says David Woodhouse, design director, The Lincoln Motor Company. “But they struck such a chord that they’re still remembered so fondly today.” Woodhouse says the element is both dramatic and distinctive. “It was truly a watershed moment for us in terms of iconic design,” he adds. Each of the 80 units in this limited production for 2019 will have a special door sill plate featuring its number in the run. A limited number of additional Continental Coach Door Edition sedans will be available as well for the 2020 model year. The Lincoln Continental 80th Anniversary Coach Door provides the refinements and advanced features today’s luxury vehicle client desires. From the doors to the seating to the Lincoln Black Label interior, no detail has been overlooked. Rear-seat amenities are uniquely tailored, featuring an elegantly crafted pass-through console that offers a stowable tray table with tablet holder and wireless charging pad. Rear-seat passengers will be more comfortable than ever. The six inches added to the car’s wheelbase allow for the placement of the larger coach doors, while also delivering best-in-class second-row legroom. Celebrating form and function The center-opening coach doors are a celebration of both form and function. Woodhouse says they showcase the interior of an exceptionally beautiful vehicle. The 90-degree opening makes for easy, graceful entry and exit by allowing passengers to turn to sit to enter, then exit the car by stepping forward and out. “People appreciate elegance and glamour,” says Woodhouse. “And they want the easiest way to get in and out of a vehicle. These doors answer to both.” The car is meticulously crafted inside and out, integrating technologies that both assist and entertain. This Continental senses a driver’s approach and lights up with Lincoln’s trademark sequential welcoming embrace. Its award-winning Head-Up display contributes to a custom driving experience by letting drivers choose what information is projected onto the windshield display. The feature is so innovative that it is visible even with ambient lighting and when the driver is wearing polarized sunglasses. In keeping with the spirit of arriving in style, the 2019 Lincoln Continental’s innovative electronic door system allows doors to be unlatched in a smooth, single motion, making entry and exit both effortless and quiet. With Lincoln’s exclusive 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged V6 engine, Continental delivers the power and performance today’s luxury clients expect with an impressive 400 horsepower and 400 lb.-ft. of torque. Three Drive Modes, including Normal, Sport and Comfort, allow clients to personalize their driving experience. To complement its smooth, powerful drive, this special edition features Perfect Position seats that adjust 30 ways, plus Active Noise Control for a quiet interior. A Revel® Ultima Audio experience allows drivers to select one of three listening modes, including stereo, audience and on-stage. Continental clients will have their choice of Lincoln Black Label themes, the brand’s most personalized level of luxury, including Chalet and Thoroughbred. Lincoln Black Label not only provides the highest quality of materials in customized designer themes, it also offers a host of membership privileges. These include annual vehicle detailing, anytime carwashes, and access to a selection of restaurants where noted chefs will provide a curated dining experience. This limited-edition model is available to order now through Lincoln Black Label dealers. The Lincoln Continental 80th Anniversary Coach Door Edition is set to arrive next summer.
  20. A few weeks back, I attended an event at Hyundai’s technical center which resides outside of Ann Arbor, Michigan. The reason for my visit was to get a preview of what they’ll be showing at the LA Auto Show (which I’ll be able to talk about later today once the NDA lifts). But Hyundai also offered the chance to drive some of their latest products on a small drive route. I had the chance to drive three models; the Santa Fe, Kona, and Veloster. A quick note about this first drive report. You will not get any impressions on the handling of the three models. The short drive was mostly made up of straight roads around the technical center. You’ll need to wait until I can my hands on the vehicles for a week-long evaluation to see how they fare in the bends. First up is the Santa Fe. I’m quite impressed with the work done on the Santa Fe’s exterior as it has much more presence on the road than the Santa Fe Sport it replaces. The square shape is accentuated by a more aggressive grille and a more upright rear end. One downside to the new look is the raised belt line, which reduces the overall glass area and makes the interior feel slightly cramped. Step inside and Hyundai has taken a huge leap forward here. A lot of their current interiors tend to focus more on utility and having controls in easy reach. The Santa Fe adds a bit of style with rounded edges, sculpted sides for the driver and passenger, and brushed metal accents. One nice touch in the Ultimate is a contrasting roofline that looks and feels like a piece of soft linen. One item that hasn’t changed is the controls. They are still easy to find and operate. The front seats are quite comfortable and offer a number of power adjustments to help dial in the perfect position. The rear seat is massive with loads of head and legroom, even with the optional panoramic sunroof. A 2.4L four-cylinder with 185 horsepower serves as the base engine, while a more powerful 2.0L turbo-four pumping out 235 horsepower is available on the higher-end Limited and Ultimate. An eight-speed automatic is standard on either engine, and you do have the choice of either front or Hyundai’s HTRAC all-wheel drive system. I drove the turbo-four with AWD and found it to be a bit underwhelming. The issue is the noticeable delay with power delivery when leaving from a stop or accelerating suddenly from a low cruising speed. I can’t fully tell if this due to the tuning of the engine, transmission, or combination of the two. It is quite the shame because the engine really shows it has punch when making a pass. Ride quality is towards the top of the class as the suspension is able to smooth out most rough road surfaces. Road and wind noise are well-muted. There’s a lot to like about the 2019 Santa Fe with its new look inside and out; spacious interior, and smooth ride. The turbo engine does sour my initial impression and has me wondering if you should wait a year until picking the turbo engine. Those who have driven the 2.4L say the engine is slightly sluggish, but I would take that over the mess that is the turbo-four. Disclaimer: Hyundai Provided Breakfast, Lunch, and the Santa Fe for this Event. Gallery: 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe Year: 2019 Make: Hyundai Model: Santa Fe Engine: 2.4L 16-Valve DOHC GDI Four-Cylinder or Turbocharged 2.0L CVVT DOHC Four-Cylinder Driveline: Eight-Speed Automatic, Front or All-Wheel Drive Horsepower @ RPM: 185 @ 6,000 (2.4); 235 @ 6,000 (2.0T) Torque @ RPM: 178 @ 4,000 (2.4); 260 @ 1,450-3,500 (2.0T) Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 22/29/25 (2.4 FWD), 21/27/23 (2.4 AWD), 20/25/22 (2.0T FWD), 19/24/21 (2.0T AWD) Curb Weight: 3,591 - 4,085 lbs Base Price: $24,750 - $38,800 View full article
  21. Mazda's 2019 3 compact sedan and hatchback were introduced last night at the LA Auto Show and it is clear the brand is not messing around. The latest-generation compact introduces a new platform, the Skyactiv-X compression ignition system, and the option of all-wheel drive. The 3's exterior shape sheds a lot of the sculpting and surfacing found on the current model. The end result is a smooth and premium look. Both the hatchback and sedan come with the same creased front end, prominent grille, and slim headlights. The hatchback is the more polarizing of the two with a very thick c-pillar from the Kai concept. On the inside, Mazda's designers have taken some inspiration from their recent concepts by going for "less is more" aesthetic. The dashboard is mounted low and features a minimal amount of buttons. An 8.8-inch infotainment screen sits in a crevice in the dash and appears to be running a new infotainment system (THANK YOU MAZDA!). In North America, Mazda will be offering the 3 with an updated version of the 2.5L SkyActiv-G four-cylinder. No power ratings were given on the engine, but we wouldn't expect them to be too far off from the 184 horsepower and 185 pound-feet of torque that engine currently produces in the CX-5 and 6. This will be paired with either a six-speed manual or automatic. Other markets will get the choice of 1.5L, 2.0L, 2.5L, and 1.8L diesel. Mazda's SkyActiv-X four-cylinder with compression ignition will launch later down the road. We don't have any details on power or what transmissions can be paired with it. One option that will make some buyers happy to see is i-Activ AWD. This system uses a number of sensors around the vehicle to help keep the vehicle moving in any condition. Mazda doesn't say which engines will have the AWD option, but we think the 2.5 will be one of them. Mazda says the 2019 3 will launch early next year with the 2.5 engine. The SkyActiv-X engine will arrive towards the end of 2019. Gallery: 2019 Mazda3 Source: Mazda ALL-NEW MAZDA3 – AN OBJECT OF UNIVERSAL DESIRE As we begin a new chapter in Mazda’s history, the mission of the all-new Mazda3 is to amaze and delight customers all over the world. The theme of development was “An object of universal desire.” Making a car that would evoke longing in any person would require the creation of a new, hitherto unknown value. We set out to achieve this by applying our human-centric philosophy for dramatic improvements in every area: design, driving performance, NVH, environmental performance and quality feel. The all-new Mazda3 embodies two characters with widespread appeal. The first is the free spirit, determined to follow their own convictions and not be bound by conventional wisdom. This character is represented in the hatchback. To achieve such a look we took an unprecedented approach to design that eliminates all character lines and relies entirely on lustrous and beautifully curved body panels that reflect the surrounding environment. As such, the model delights onlookers with a countenance that changes by the season and the hour of the day. The other character is that of a lady or gentlemen who combines dignity with a strong individualistic streak. Their adherence to formality and traditional styles conceals an idiomatic beauty that is breathtaking when glimpsed. This character is embodied in the sedan. Aspiring to create the most gorgeous sedan in its class, we set aside the notion of a C-segment car,* removed all constraints and extended the overall length. We overcame numerous technical challenges in order to keep the hood and trunk low. The resulting proportions are sleek and elegant, giving the impression of a single flowing brushstroke. We also raised the quality of driving and riding in the car. Driving an automobile requires paying constant attention to your surroundings, making split-second judgments and taking appropriate action. Mazda wants to make driving less stressful and more natural for everyone. To achieve this, we decided to undertake a thorough scientific study of human beings. When walking or running, people make subtle adjustments in the legs, pelvis and spine so that head sway can be controlled using only the slightest muscular effort. In order to make this natural action possible in the car, we redesigned and organically linked every component to draw out people’s innate ability to maintain balance. The result is Skyactiv-Vehicle Architecture, a new set of structural technologies that make riding in a car feel as natural and stress-free as walking on your own two feet. In addition, we achieved a comfortable quietness by focusing not only on noise volumes but on the time it takes for sounds to be transmitted and the direction from which they arrive. Next, we built a clear and expressive sound system with speakers positioned to deliver sound directly to the driver’s ears and set about creating a comfortable cabin space for all vehicle occupants. Thanks to the benefits of Skyactiv-Vehicle Architecture and the latest Skyactiv gasoline and diesel engines, which allow intuitive control of vehicle speed in any situation, the all-new Mazda3 offers driving pleasure of unprecedented quality. The powertrain lineup includes Skyactiv-X, a new kind of combustion engine that combines the advantages of gasoline and diesel engines. Its innovative Spark-Controlled Compression Ignition system enables us to choose gear settings that accentuate performance without sacrificing emissions or fuel economy. Engine response is quick and driving is smooth with a reassuring feeling of control. Skyactiv-X will realize even greater driving pleasure and superior real-world environmental performance, enhancing the joy the car-ownership. The all-new Mazda3 will add color and brilliance to your daily routine. The captivating character of the design stirs the emotions and the driving feel sharpen the senses, making even your daily commute feel like a journey of new discovery. My hope is that this car will help customers discover the joys of living a life truer to oneself. Kota Beppu All-new Mazda3 Program Manager A NEW FORM OF ELEGANCE BASED ON JAPANESE AESTHETICS. MAZDA DESIGN ENTERS AN EXCITING NEW STAGE. Introduced in 2010 and making its production model debut with the launch of the CX-5 and the Mazda6 in 2012, Mazda’s Kodo—Soul of Motion design has been a driving force in enhancing the brand’s global value. Mazda now takes it to higher levels of depth and sophistication as it enters a new stage that raises car design to the level of fine art. The goal for this new evolution of Kodo design is to express a new form of elegance inspired by Japanese aesthetics. The first cars to embody Mazda’s new design language were the RX-Vision concept model shown at the 2015 Tokyo Motor Show and the Vision Coupe concept model exhibited at the 2017 show. Elements finely honed to create clean, beautiful designs combine with a delicate play of light and reflections to realize elegant and sophisticated styling with a natural, dynamic feel. The new Mazda3 is the first production model to adopt this evolved version of Kodo design. While featuring an extremely simple “single motion” to its overall form, the way light and shadows shift and reflections move over the body gives birth to a highly vital and dramatic expression that goes beyond previous iterations of the design language. Another goal in styling the new Mazda3 was to give the hatchback its own more emotional design, while the sedan aims to present more elegant proportions. Despite sharing the same Mazda3 model name, the two forms represent entirely different personalities. EXTERIOR DESIGN In designing the hatchback and sedan versions of the new Mazda3, the development team took a fresh look at their respective values and personalities and then worked to maximize the unique appeal of each. The hatchback presents a powerful and seductive look with lasting visual appeal that evokes a sense of exciting experiences to come. In contrast, the clean, sleek and sophisticated beauty of the sedan speaks of maturity and refinement. The result is two body types with personalities so distinct one might even think they were completely different models. The design concept for the hatchback focused on creating a solid mass with a seductive appeal that conveys a fresh expression of hatchback styling. When viewed from the rear, the cabin and body come together to appear as a single solid mass. This unique form realizes a powerful, solid presence and an expression of seductive and lasting appeal. The design concept for the sedan is “sleek and elegant.” While conforming to traditional sedan styling by bringing together the hood, cabin and trunk as three distinct elements, the development team aimed to elevate those elements and achieve a new level of beauty that befits a Mazda sedan. The result is a refined, mature expression of elegance. A new lamp design is one more element key to Kodo design’s further evolution. In keeping with the “less is more” theme, all unnecessary elements are shaved away to leave only the essence of a lighting fixture. The development team felt that limiting the design to the minimum necessary elements – the light source, lens and base – would create a clean and beautiful look. They also pursued a round design with an expression of depth in order to create a presence that accentuates the new Mazda3’s physique and fore-aft axis. The new design embodies a dynamic expression that distinguishes the Mazda brand. Polymetal Gray was newly developed as an exclusive color offering for the hatchback. Fusing the hard appearance of metal with plastic’s characteristic glossy smoothness creates an entirely new expression of quality. The color changes its expression depending on the light, accentuating the beautiful form of the hatchback’s body. INTERIOR DESIGN To further strengthen the connection between the car and driver, every aspect of the cockpit is laid out in perfect horizontal symmetry with the driver in the center. At the same time, every element is designed to directly face the driver and help emphasize the driver-centered axis that runs from front to rear. Furthermore, the interior incorporates the “less is more” ideal that is a key to the new Mazda3’s further-evolved KODO design. Keeping all elements other than the cockpit as simple as possible helps amplify the presence of the cockpit zone. This creates a comfortable environment in which the car and driver engage in a natural dialogue that enables the driver to focus on the task of driving. The cockpit design applies the “vanishing point” concept down to the parts level, including the steering wheel spokes and center display. Along with emphasizing the driver-centered axis running from front to rear through the cockpit zone, this design approach also expresses a second horizontal axis through the layout of the forms that run left and right from the instrument panel out to the door trim on both sides. The design goal was simplicity throughout based on the aesthetics of “less is more.” For example, the climate-control panel and passenger-side louvers are integrated into the left-right axis that follows the line of the instrument panel. This results in a clean and simple design. Interior parts employ Mazda’s own grain, designed to express the richness and warmth of genuine leather. By introducing creases with differing depth and shapes on different parts, this new material creates a lively rich expression. The newly designed shift panel takes advantage of a technology called “two-layer molding.” It incorporates a laser-engraved black layer covered by a second clear layer to present a glossy black finish with a look of deep transparency. Shifts in light create a rich linear expression that helps the panel accentuate the new Mazda3’s sporty nature, high-quality appearance, and pride of ownership. The fabric interior adopts a new Greige color, which combines the cool tones of gray with the soft feel of beige to create a pleasing sensation of vitality and warmth. This combination of light and depth gives the interior a sophisticated look. Burgundy was newly developed as an interior color exclusive to the hatchback. The deep, vivid look of this special red leather heightens the emotion of exterior design and creates a look that appeals to mature tastes. HUMAN-CENTRIC DESIGN FURTHER ENHANCES RELAXING COMFORT The cockpit and cabin were carefully designed in accordance with Mazda’s own human-centric philosophy. One goal was to provide all drivers with a confidence-inspiring ease of operation that helps them to concentrate on driving. Another was to make time spent in transit comfortable and enjoyable. Mazda applied the latest available knowledge and technology in designing the driving position, visibility, Human-Machine Interface (HMI), and audio sound quality. These were leveraged to further elevate the level of quality and satisfaction by delivering a more natural and intuitive feeling to driving. The new Mazda3 provides all occupants with the pleasure of a natural, comfortable and relaxing driving experience that begins with the very first outing and remains consistent in any driving scene. DRIVING POSITION The telescopic steering adopts an additional 10mm of movement at either end to offer a wider adjustment range of 70mm and deliver more precise control over the adjustment of the driving position. In addition, front seat cushion tilt adjustment is now included as standard equipment. This helps prevent the angle of the seat from causing the occupant’s thighs to float above the cushion or placing undue pressure on the thighs. As such, it offers firm support that keeps the pelvis in an upright position to maintain the ideal seating posture Mazda has strived to achieve. The gear shift lever was moved forward and positioned higher on both the automatic and manual transmission versions. This makes it easier for the driver to move his or her hand from the steering wheel and to operate the shift lever. The commander control was also moved forward, the cupholders repositioned in front of the shift lever and the center armrest lengthened. This new floor console layout significantly improves operating stability, ease and use. HUMAN-MACHINE INTERFACE (HMI) The Active Driving Display, meters and center display were all redesigned to present information in a simpler fashion, while the fonts used were unified to create a pleasing and consistent look. The new Mazda3 adopts an 8.8-inch wide center display. Offering simplified operation that requires only the use of the commander control, it also features a new intuitive guidance system that makes the commander control easier to operate. VISIBILITY AND FIELD OF VIEW The thickness and shape of the A-pillar design were optimized to minimize its obstruction angle and associated blind spots. Every detail of the pillar shape was carefully designed after calculating what degree of neck and eye movement would not burden the driver. As a result, the new design significantly reduces blind spots ahead of the car, providing the driver with a continuous view of pedestrians or potential obstacles to the right or left while maintaining a natural driving posture. The control system for windshield wiper operating speed was carefully designed to improve wiper performance. It is also designed to constantly adjust the operating angle of the wipers in fine increments. This allows them to firmly clean right up to the A-pillar and greatly expand visibility near the A-pillar on the driver’s side. The wipers are housed beneath the hood, which helps provide a clear downward view out of the windshield. In addition, the washer nozzles are attached to the wiper arms so their spray can be wiped away immediately after application and not interfere with visibility. These measures combine to provide the driver with a clearer view and to more quickly maintain clear visibility in inclement weather. MAZDA CONNECT Mazda Connect now includes a Digital Owner’s Manual as one of its app offerings. When a warning appears on the center display, it also presents an indication of the priority level and a link to the Digital Owner’s Manual. The driver can then access the manual to quickly receive an explanation of the warning and instructions on how best to respond to the situation. AUDIO SYSTEM Mazda conducted a series of new studies into how sounds are transmitted through a car’s cabin. This led to more efficiently improving sound quality by placing the bass speakers in the corners where the sound is amplified. To avoid the tonal quality of mid- to high-frequency sounds from being affected by reflected sounds, the other speakers were positioned on the left and right sail garnish and upper sections of the door trim where the sound is transmitted directly toward the occupant’s ears. This creates a more natural sensation to distinguishing the sound’s point of origin and enhances the depth and clarity of that sound. The 8-speaker standard audio system uses a 3-way layout, with 3L woofers positioned on the sides of the front cowl, a pair of 2.5cm squawkers on the sail garnish and 8cm squawkers on the upper section of the front and rear door trim. The 12-speaker Bose®sound system adds an 8cm center speaker, a pair of rear satellite speakers, and a subwoofer. It also features custom tuning to provide more powerful bass and higher audio quality. MAZDA’S NEXT GENERATION OF DRIVING PLEASURE, REFINED AND FURTHER EVOLVED THROUGH HUMAN-CENTRIC DESIGN Mazda’s Jinba-ittai driving experience demands that the car works in perfect harmony with the driver’s intentions to provide greater safety, confidence and reassurance. In working to achieve this, Mazda has remained committed to building cars according to its human-centric design philosophy. These efforts include advancing its Skyactiv technologies. Beginning with the new Mazda3, they also include the introduction of new technologies that further evolve the level to which human-centric design is applied. The ongoing goal is to realize the ultimate expression of Jinba-ittai by enabling the driver to enjoy the pleasure of driving with natural action, as though moving his or her own body without any need for conscious effort. These new technologies are founded on intensive human research studies that go beyond just looking at body characteristics and movements by also investigating emotional responses. Rather than simply pursue mechanical efficiency of the human anatomy, Mazda is focusing efforts on maximizing inherent physical abilities while exploring how to realize a driving experience that best matches human sensibilities. By coordinating the development of all these technologies as an organic whole, Mazda honed dynamic performance such that the basic movements of the car – accelerating, turning and stopping – feels natural to the driver. The new Mazda3 is powered by the latest Skyactiv engines, including Mazda’s new Skyactiv-X, and also adopts Skyactiv-Vehicle Architecture. This adds a new layer of polish to its driving dynamics, based on Mazda’s human-centric design philosophy. The next generation of Mazda driving pleasure starts here. POWERTRAIN 1.5-, 2.0- and 2.5-liter versions of the latest Skyactiv-G comprise the gasoline engine lineup for the new Mazda3. All three adopt optimized intake ports and piston shape, split fuel injection and a coolant control valve to deliver higher levels of dynamic performance, fuel economy and environmental friendliness. The Skyactiv-D 1.8 is the diesel engine offering for the new Mazda3. Incorporating ultra-high-response multi-hole piezo injectors allows the engine to utilize high-pressure, precisely controlled multi-stage injection. This realizes a finer balance of enhanced fuel economy, quietness and reduced exhaust gases, while also delivering smoother, more robust performance. All-new Mazda3 is the first production car to offer Mazda’s innovative Skyactiv-X engine. Features include superior initial response, powerful torque, faithful linear response and free-revving performance. The engine is assisted by Mazda’s intelligent new M Hybrid system, which supports greater gains in fuel economy, and achieves higher levels of driving pleasure and environmental friendliness. I-ACTIV AWD Mazda’s evolved i-Activ AWD newly adds “four-wheel vertical load” detection and works in harmony with G-Vectoring Control Plus (GVC Plus) to control torque distribution between the front and rear wheels. As a result, it is fully capable of responding faithfully to the driver’s intentions, regardless of the driving scene. It also reduces overall mechanical loss by approximately 60% over the previous model and contributes to improved fuel economy. G-Vectoring Control Plus (GVC Plus) adds direct yaw moment control via the brakes. This enables the car to better handle emergency avoidance maneuvers and offers more confidence-inspiring controllability in various situations, including lane changes at high speeds and driving on slippery roads. SKYACTIV-VEHICLE ARCHITECTURE NEXT-GENERATION STRUCTURAL TECHNOLOGIES The seats adopt a basic structure designed to maintain the natural S-shaped curve of the spine. The seat cushion and lower seatback support the lower pelvis, upper pelvis and thighs to keep the pelvis in an upright position. Meanwhile, the upper seatback bolsters the gravity center of the rib cage. This structure enables the driver to stabilize his or her head in a natural fashion by shifting his or her pelvis and spine to maintain balance without any conscious effort. The body further evolves Mazda’s straight framework and continuous ring structure concept. New front-to-back connections complement the existing vertical and lateral connections of the previous body to form multi-directional ring structures. This increases rigidity while reducing lag in the transmission of energy, which helps maximize the function of the dampers and tires. By concentrating energy input from the road surface in specifically chosen locations and adopting a newly developed damping structure that helps absorb it, vibration that causes noise is reduced without increasing vehicle weight. Based on the concept of smoothing the transmission of force to the sprung mass over time, the suspension system uses MacPherson struts in the front and a newly developed torsion beam setup in the rear. A new spherical shape was adopted for the internal structure of the bushings combines with new suspension geometry to realize lag-free transmission and linear action. REDUCED NVH As a result of Mazda’s human research studies, development focused on three sound characteristics that directly impact cabin occupants. Those are sound volume, changes in pitch and tone over time, and the direction from which sounds originate. Suppressing noise generation and reducing its volume, while also controlling the fluctuations in and direction of sounds, are aimed not only at achieving a “quiet” cabin environment. Rather, the goal is to provide a “high-quality quietness” that is satisfying to all cabin occupants. To improve the basic insulation qualities key to reducing NVH, the new Mazda3 marks Mazda’s first application of a “two-wall” structure that leaves space between the body and carpeting on the floor. By considering the carpet and the body panel as two walls, and then designing them to match the characteristics of the fiber material attached to the carpet increases efficiency without increasing weight. The number of holes in the carpeting was also reduced wherever possible to significantly enhance sound insulation. Measures to deal with road noise focused on minimizing noise and vibrations, and to make any noises transmitted when the road surface changes reach the ears of cabin occupants in a linear fashion. Sound-absorbing functionality added to the headliner and floor mats effectively suppresses high-frequency noise. Tires with optimized vertical spring action and increased rigidity at possible entry points help prevent the transmission of unwanted vibrations to the cabin. Lag-free transmission of permitted sounds and vibrations create a more reassuring and comfortable cabin environment. SAFETY FEATURES DESIGNED TO EXCEL IN THE REAL WORLD The fundamental aims of Mazda Proactive Safety are to offer the driver confidence-building reassurance and to offer all cabin occupants a thoroughly enjoyable driving experience. Based on this philosophy, the development team worked hard to evolve basic safety technologies such as the driving position, pedal layout and good visibility, advanced i-Activsense technologies, as well as passive safety technologies designed to protect cabin occupants in the event a collision should occur. With an eye on the future, Mazda is constantly making efforts to further evolve the level of safety offered by its cars. The aim is to provide a safe and reassuring driving experience to everybody, from novice drivers with little time behind the wheel, to elderly drivers, and including passengers in the rear seats. Mazda is committed to further advancing its safety technologies as it works step by step toward making car accidents a thing of the past. ACTIVE SAFETY: I-ACTIVSENSE The new Mazda3 is available with Mazda’s newly developed Driver Monitoring system. The system uses both an infrared camera and infrared LED to observe the driver’s condition while driving. It monitors how wide open the driver’s eyelids are at any given time, the number of times he or she blinks, and also the angle of the mouth and face in order to determine the level of drowsiness or fatigue. It also monitors the driver’s line of sight and eye movement to determine when the driver is being inattentive. If the system judges that the situation has become dangerous, it sounds an alert to make the driver aware and works in conjunction with the Smart Brake Support (SBS) system to shorten the time required for the brake warning to sound. Front Cross Traffic Alert (FCTA) is available on the new Mazda3. The system uses newly adopted front side radars to detect other vehicles approaching from blind spots at the front right or left of the vehicle and alert the driver of their presence. This helps prevent a common cause of accidents, when cars enter a T intersection with a partially obscured view. Also available on the new Mazda3 is Mazda’s new Cruising & Traffic Support (CTS) system. CTS contributes to reducing driver fatigue by assisting with accelerator, brake pedal and steering operations when stuck in traffic jams on the highway. It also supports a safer, more reassuring and more comfortable driving experience in conditions that demand constant operation of the assisted functions. PASSIVE SAFETY The ratio of ultra-high-tensile steel rated of 980MPa or higher is greatly increased, from the 3% used on the previous model to 30% on the new Mazda3. This combines with the addition of a new perimeter beam and rear side frames that deform in an accordion-style pattern to create a solid body that can stand up to impact force and a frame structure that effectively absorbs energy. The new Mazda3 introduces a new knee airbag for the driver’s seat. It is not only a first on a Mazda car, but will be included as standard equipment worldwide. By suppressing forward motion of the driver’s body in the event of a collision, this new airbag contributes to fewer injuries to the driver’s legs, chest and Each of the side airbags is divided into a front and rear chamber. Using reduced air pressure in the forward chamber and higher pressure in the rear chamber reduces the load taken by the rib cage, while firmly holding the body in place. The hood adopts a new energy-absorbing inner structure designed to receive the impact of a pedestrian’s head in the initial moment of contact and then gradually dampen the force to more quickly absorb the impact energy. The front bumper is designed to support the thigh and shins if contact is made with a pedestrian’s legs while softening the blow to the knee area. This reduces the degree of injury to the knees and ligaments due to bending and twisting. View full article
  22. William Maley

    Quick First Drive: 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe

    A few weeks back, I attended an event at Hyundai’s technical center which resides outside of Ann Arbor, Michigan. The reason for my visit was to get a preview of what they’ll be showing at the LA Auto Show (which I’ll be able to talk about later today once the NDA lifts). But Hyundai also offered the chance to drive some of their latest products on a small drive route. I had the chance to drive three models; the Santa Fe, Kona, and Veloster. A quick note about this first drive report. You will not get any impressions on the handling of the three models. The short drive was mostly made up of straight roads around the technical center. You’ll need to wait until I can my hands on the vehicles for a week-long evaluation to see how they fare in the bends. First up is the Santa Fe. I’m quite impressed with the work done on the Santa Fe’s exterior as it has much more presence on the road than the Santa Fe Sport it replaces. The square shape is accentuated by a more aggressive grille and a more upright rear end. One downside to the new look is the raised belt line, which reduces the overall glass area and makes the interior feel slightly cramped. Step inside and Hyundai has taken a huge leap forward here. A lot of their current interiors tend to focus more on utility and having controls in easy reach. The Santa Fe adds a bit of style with rounded edges, sculpted sides for the driver and passenger, and brushed metal accents. One nice touch in the Ultimate is a contrasting roofline that looks and feels like a piece of soft linen. One item that hasn’t changed is the controls. They are still easy to find and operate. The front seats are quite comfortable and offer a number of power adjustments to help dial in the perfect position. The rear seat is massive with loads of head and legroom, even with the optional panoramic sunroof. A 2.4L four-cylinder with 185 horsepower serves as the base engine, while a more powerful 2.0L turbo-four pumping out 235 horsepower is available on the higher-end Limited and Ultimate. An eight-speed automatic is standard on either engine, and you do have the choice of either front or Hyundai’s HTRAC all-wheel drive system. I drove the turbo-four with AWD and found it to be a bit underwhelming. The issue is the noticeable delay with power delivery when leaving from a stop or accelerating suddenly from a low cruising speed. I can’t fully tell if this due to the tuning of the engine, transmission, or combination of the two. It is quite the shame because the engine really shows it has punch when making a pass. Ride quality is towards the top of the class as the suspension is able to smooth out most rough road surfaces. Road and wind noise are well-muted. There’s a lot to like about the 2019 Santa Fe with its new look inside and out; spacious interior, and smooth ride. The turbo engine does sour my initial impression and has me wondering if you should wait a year until picking the turbo engine. Those who have driven the 2.4L say the engine is slightly sluggish, but I would take that over the mess that is the turbo-four. Disclaimer: Hyundai Provided Breakfast, Lunch, and the Santa Fe for this Event. Gallery: 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe Year: 2019 Make: Hyundai Model: Santa Fe Engine: 2.4L 16-Valve DOHC GDI Four-Cylinder or Turbocharged 2.0L CVVT DOHC Four-Cylinder Driveline: Eight-Speed Automatic, Front or All-Wheel Drive Horsepower @ RPM: 185 @ 6,000 (2.4); 235 @ 6,000 (2.0T) Torque @ RPM: 178 @ 4,000 (2.4); 260 @ 1,450-3,500 (2.0T) Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 22/29/25 (2.4 FWD), 21/27/23 (2.4 AWD), 20/25/22 (2.0T FWD), 19/24/21 (2.0T AWD) Curb Weight: 3,591 - 4,085 lbs Base Price: $24,750 - $38,800
  23. Mazda's 2019 3 compact sedan and hatchback were introduced last night at the LA Auto Show and it is clear the brand is not messing around. The latest-generation compact introduces a new platform, the Skyactiv-X compression ignition system, and the option of all-wheel drive. The 3's exterior shape sheds a lot of the sculpting and surfacing found on the current model. The end result is a smooth and premium look. Both the hatchback and sedan come with the same creased front end, prominent grille, and slim headlights. The hatchback is the more polarizing of the two with a very thick c-pillar from the Kai concept. On the inside, Mazda's designers have taken some inspiration from their recent concepts by going for "less is more" aesthetic. The dashboard is mounted low and features a minimal amount of buttons. An 8.8-inch infotainment screen sits in a crevice in the dash and appears to be running a new infotainment system (THANK YOU MAZDA!). In North America, Mazda will be offering the 3 with an updated version of the 2.5L SkyActiv-G four-cylinder. No power ratings were given on the engine, but we wouldn't expect them to be too far off from the 184 horsepower and 185 pound-feet of torque that engine currently produces in the CX-5 and 6. This will be paired with either a six-speed manual or automatic. Other markets will get the choice of 1.5L, 2.0L, 2.5L, and 1.8L diesel. Mazda's SkyActiv-X four-cylinder with compression ignition will launch later down the road. We don't have any details on power or what transmissions can be paired with it. One option that will make some buyers happy to see is i-Activ AWD. This system uses a number of sensors around the vehicle to help keep the vehicle moving in any condition. Mazda doesn't say which engines will have the AWD option, but we think the 2.5 will be one of them. Mazda says the 2019 3 will launch early next year with the 2.5 engine. The SkyActiv-X engine will arrive towards the end of 2019. Gallery: 2019 Mazda3 Source: Mazda ALL-NEW MAZDA3 – AN OBJECT OF UNIVERSAL DESIRE As we begin a new chapter in Mazda’s history, the mission of the all-new Mazda3 is to amaze and delight customers all over the world. The theme of development was “An object of universal desire.” Making a car that would evoke longing in any person would require the creation of a new, hitherto unknown value. We set out to achieve this by applying our human-centric philosophy for dramatic improvements in every area: design, driving performance, NVH, environmental performance and quality feel. The all-new Mazda3 embodies two characters with widespread appeal. The first is the free spirit, determined to follow their own convictions and not be bound by conventional wisdom. This character is represented in the hatchback. To achieve such a look we took an unprecedented approach to design that eliminates all character lines and relies entirely on lustrous and beautifully curved body panels that reflect the surrounding environment. As such, the model delights onlookers with a countenance that changes by the season and the hour of the day. The other character is that of a lady or gentlemen who combines dignity with a strong individualistic streak. Their adherence to formality and traditional styles conceals an idiomatic beauty that is breathtaking when glimpsed. This character is embodied in the sedan. Aspiring to create the most gorgeous sedan in its class, we set aside the notion of a C-segment car,* removed all constraints and extended the overall length. We overcame numerous technical challenges in order to keep the hood and trunk low. The resulting proportions are sleek and elegant, giving the impression of a single flowing brushstroke. We also raised the quality of driving and riding in the car. Driving an automobile requires paying constant attention to your surroundings, making split-second judgments and taking appropriate action. Mazda wants to make driving less stressful and more natural for everyone. To achieve this, we decided to undertake a thorough scientific study of human beings. When walking or running, people make subtle adjustments in the legs, pelvis and spine so that head sway can be controlled using only the slightest muscular effort. In order to make this natural action possible in the car, we redesigned and organically linked every component to draw out people’s innate ability to maintain balance. The result is Skyactiv-Vehicle Architecture, a new set of structural technologies that make riding in a car feel as natural and stress-free as walking on your own two feet. In addition, we achieved a comfortable quietness by focusing not only on noise volumes but on the time it takes for sounds to be transmitted and the direction from which they arrive. Next, we built a clear and expressive sound system with speakers positioned to deliver sound directly to the driver’s ears and set about creating a comfortable cabin space for all vehicle occupants. Thanks to the benefits of Skyactiv-Vehicle Architecture and the latest Skyactiv gasoline and diesel engines, which allow intuitive control of vehicle speed in any situation, the all-new Mazda3 offers driving pleasure of unprecedented quality. The powertrain lineup includes Skyactiv-X, a new kind of combustion engine that combines the advantages of gasoline and diesel engines. Its innovative Spark-Controlled Compression Ignition system enables us to choose gear settings that accentuate performance without sacrificing emissions or fuel economy. Engine response is quick and driving is smooth with a reassuring feeling of control. Skyactiv-X will realize even greater driving pleasure and superior real-world environmental performance, enhancing the joy the car-ownership. The all-new Mazda3 will add color and brilliance to your daily routine. The captivating character of the design stirs the emotions and the driving feel sharpen the senses, making even your daily commute feel like a journey of new discovery. My hope is that this car will help customers discover the joys of living a life truer to oneself. Kota Beppu All-new Mazda3 Program Manager A NEW FORM OF ELEGANCE BASED ON JAPANESE AESTHETICS. MAZDA DESIGN ENTERS AN EXCITING NEW STAGE. Introduced in 2010 and making its production model debut with the launch of the CX-5 and the Mazda6 in 2012, Mazda’s Kodo—Soul of Motion design has been a driving force in enhancing the brand’s global value. Mazda now takes it to higher levels of depth and sophistication as it enters a new stage that raises car design to the level of fine art. The goal for this new evolution of Kodo design is to express a new form of elegance inspired by Japanese aesthetics. The first cars to embody Mazda’s new design language were the RX-Vision concept model shown at the 2015 Tokyo Motor Show and the Vision Coupe concept model exhibited at the 2017 show. Elements finely honed to create clean, beautiful designs combine with a delicate play of light and reflections to realize elegant and sophisticated styling with a natural, dynamic feel. The new Mazda3 is the first production model to adopt this evolved version of Kodo design. While featuring an extremely simple “single motion” to its overall form, the way light and shadows shift and reflections move over the body gives birth to a highly vital and dramatic expression that goes beyond previous iterations of the design language. Another goal in styling the new Mazda3 was to give the hatchback its own more emotional design, while the sedan aims to present more elegant proportions. Despite sharing the same Mazda3 model name, the two forms represent entirely different personalities. EXTERIOR DESIGN In designing the hatchback and sedan versions of the new Mazda3, the development team took a fresh look at their respective values and personalities and then worked to maximize the unique appeal of each. The hatchback presents a powerful and seductive look with lasting visual appeal that evokes a sense of exciting experiences to come. In contrast, the clean, sleek and sophisticated beauty of the sedan speaks of maturity and refinement. The result is two body types with personalities so distinct one might even think they were completely different models. The design concept for the hatchback focused on creating a solid mass with a seductive appeal that conveys a fresh expression of hatchback styling. When viewed from the rear, the cabin and body come together to appear as a single solid mass. This unique form realizes a powerful, solid presence and an expression of seductive and lasting appeal. The design concept for the sedan is “sleek and elegant.” While conforming to traditional sedan styling by bringing together the hood, cabin and trunk as three distinct elements, the development team aimed to elevate those elements and achieve a new level of beauty that befits a Mazda sedan. The result is a refined, mature expression of elegance. A new lamp design is one more element key to Kodo design’s further evolution. In keeping with the “less is more” theme, all unnecessary elements are shaved away to leave only the essence of a lighting fixture. The development team felt that limiting the design to the minimum necessary elements – the light source, lens and base – would create a clean and beautiful look. They also pursued a round design with an expression of depth in order to create a presence that accentuates the new Mazda3’s physique and fore-aft axis. The new design embodies a dynamic expression that distinguishes the Mazda brand. Polymetal Gray was newly developed as an exclusive color offering for the hatchback. Fusing the hard appearance of metal with plastic’s characteristic glossy smoothness creates an entirely new expression of quality. The color changes its expression depending on the light, accentuating the beautiful form of the hatchback’s body. INTERIOR DESIGN To further strengthen the connection between the car and driver, every aspect of the cockpit is laid out in perfect horizontal symmetry with the driver in the center. At the same time, every element is designed to directly face the driver and help emphasize the driver-centered axis that runs from front to rear. Furthermore, the interior incorporates the “less is more” ideal that is a key to the new Mazda3’s further-evolved KODO design. Keeping all elements other than the cockpit as simple as possible helps amplify the presence of the cockpit zone. This creates a comfortable environment in which the car and driver engage in a natural dialogue that enables the driver to focus on the task of driving. The cockpit design applies the “vanishing point” concept down to the parts level, including the steering wheel spokes and center display. Along with emphasizing the driver-centered axis running from front to rear through the cockpit zone, this design approach also expresses a second horizontal axis through the layout of the forms that run left and right from the instrument panel out to the door trim on both sides. The design goal was simplicity throughout based on the aesthetics of “less is more.” For example, the climate-control panel and passenger-side louvers are integrated into the left-right axis that follows the line of the instrument panel. This results in a clean and simple design. Interior parts employ Mazda’s own grain, designed to express the richness and warmth of genuine leather. By introducing creases with differing depth and shapes on different parts, this new material creates a lively rich expression. The newly designed shift panel takes advantage of a technology called “two-layer molding.” It incorporates a laser-engraved black layer covered by a second clear layer to present a glossy black finish with a look of deep transparency. Shifts in light create a rich linear expression that helps the panel accentuate the new Mazda3’s sporty nature, high-quality appearance, and pride of ownership. The fabric interior adopts a new Greige color, which combines the cool tones of gray with the soft feel of beige to create a pleasing sensation of vitality and warmth. This combination of light and depth gives the interior a sophisticated look. Burgundy was newly developed as an interior color exclusive to the hatchback. The deep, vivid look of this special red leather heightens the emotion of exterior design and creates a look that appeals to mature tastes. HUMAN-CENTRIC DESIGN FURTHER ENHANCES RELAXING COMFORT The cockpit and cabin were carefully designed in accordance with Mazda’s own human-centric philosophy. One goal was to provide all drivers with a confidence-inspiring ease of operation that helps them to concentrate on driving. Another was to make time spent in transit comfortable and enjoyable. Mazda applied the latest available knowledge and technology in designing the driving position, visibility, Human-Machine Interface (HMI), and audio sound quality. These were leveraged to further elevate the level of quality and satisfaction by delivering a more natural and intuitive feeling to driving. The new Mazda3 provides all occupants with the pleasure of a natural, comfortable and relaxing driving experience that begins with the very first outing and remains consistent in any driving scene. DRIVING POSITION The telescopic steering adopts an additional 10mm of movement at either end to offer a wider adjustment range of 70mm and deliver more precise control over the adjustment of the driving position. In addition, front seat cushion tilt adjustment is now included as standard equipment. This helps prevent the angle of the seat from causing the occupant’s thighs to float above the cushion or placing undue pressure on the thighs. As such, it offers firm support that keeps the pelvis in an upright position to maintain the ideal seating posture Mazda has strived to achieve. The gear shift lever was moved forward and positioned higher on both the automatic and manual transmission versions. This makes it easier for the driver to move his or her hand from the steering wheel and to operate the shift lever. The commander control was also moved forward, the cupholders repositioned in front of the shift lever and the center armrest lengthened. This new floor console layout significantly improves operating stability, ease and use. HUMAN-MACHINE INTERFACE (HMI) The Active Driving Display, meters and center display were all redesigned to present information in a simpler fashion, while the fonts used were unified to create a pleasing and consistent look. The new Mazda3 adopts an 8.8-inch wide center display. Offering simplified operation that requires only the use of the commander control, it also features a new intuitive guidance system that makes the commander control easier to operate. VISIBILITY AND FIELD OF VIEW The thickness and shape of the A-pillar design were optimized to minimize its obstruction angle and associated blind spots. Every detail of the pillar shape was carefully designed after calculating what degree of neck and eye movement would not burden the driver. As a result, the new design significantly reduces blind spots ahead of the car, providing the driver with a continuous view of pedestrians or potential obstacles to the right or left while maintaining a natural driving posture. The control system for windshield wiper operating speed was carefully designed to improve wiper performance. It is also designed to constantly adjust the operating angle of the wipers in fine increments. This allows them to firmly clean right up to the A-pillar and greatly expand visibility near the A-pillar on the driver’s side. The wipers are housed beneath the hood, which helps provide a clear downward view out of the windshield. In addition, the washer nozzles are attached to the wiper arms so their spray can be wiped away immediately after application and not interfere with visibility. These measures combine to provide the driver with a clearer view and to more quickly maintain clear visibility in inclement weather. MAZDA CONNECT Mazda Connect now includes a Digital Owner’s Manual as one of its app offerings. When a warning appears on the center display, it also presents an indication of the priority level and a link to the Digital Owner’s Manual. The driver can then access the manual to quickly receive an explanation of the warning and instructions on how best to respond to the situation. AUDIO SYSTEM Mazda conducted a series of new studies into how sounds are transmitted through a car’s cabin. This led to more efficiently improving sound quality by placing the bass speakers in the corners where the sound is amplified. To avoid the tonal quality of mid- to high-frequency sounds from being affected by reflected sounds, the other speakers were positioned on the left and right sail garnish and upper sections of the door trim where the sound is transmitted directly toward the occupant’s ears. This creates a more natural sensation to distinguishing the sound’s point of origin and enhances the depth and clarity of that sound. The 8-speaker standard audio system uses a 3-way layout, with 3L woofers positioned on the sides of the front cowl, a pair of 2.5cm squawkers on the sail garnish and 8cm squawkers on the upper section of the front and rear door trim. The 12-speaker Bose®sound system adds an 8cm center speaker, a pair of rear satellite speakers, and a subwoofer. It also features custom tuning to provide more powerful bass and higher audio quality. MAZDA’S NEXT GENERATION OF DRIVING PLEASURE, REFINED AND FURTHER EVOLVED THROUGH HUMAN-CENTRIC DESIGN Mazda’s Jinba-ittai driving experience demands that the car works in perfect harmony with the driver’s intentions to provide greater safety, confidence and reassurance. In working to achieve this, Mazda has remained committed to building cars according to its human-centric design philosophy. These efforts include advancing its Skyactiv technologies. Beginning with the new Mazda3, they also include the introduction of new technologies that further evolve the level to which human-centric design is applied. The ongoing goal is to realize the ultimate expression of Jinba-ittai by enabling the driver to enjoy the pleasure of driving with natural action, as though moving his or her own body without any need for conscious effort. These new technologies are founded on intensive human research studies that go beyond just looking at body characteristics and movements by also investigating emotional responses. Rather than simply pursue mechanical efficiency of the human anatomy, Mazda is focusing efforts on maximizing inherent physical abilities while exploring how to realize a driving experience that best matches human sensibilities. By coordinating the development of all these technologies as an organic whole, Mazda honed dynamic performance such that the basic movements of the car – accelerating, turning and stopping – feels natural to the driver. The new Mazda3 is powered by the latest Skyactiv engines, including Mazda’s new Skyactiv-X, and also adopts Skyactiv-Vehicle Architecture. This adds a new layer of polish to its driving dynamics, based on Mazda’s human-centric design philosophy. The next generation of Mazda driving pleasure starts here. POWERTRAIN 1.5-, 2.0- and 2.5-liter versions of the latest Skyactiv-G comprise the gasoline engine lineup for the new Mazda3. All three adopt optimized intake ports and piston shape, split fuel injection and a coolant control valve to deliver higher levels of dynamic performance, fuel economy and environmental friendliness. The Skyactiv-D 1.8 is the diesel engine offering for the new Mazda3. Incorporating ultra-high-response multi-hole piezo injectors allows the engine to utilize high-pressure, precisely controlled multi-stage injection. This realizes a finer balance of enhanced fuel economy, quietness and reduced exhaust gases, while also delivering smoother, more robust performance. All-new Mazda3 is the first production car to offer Mazda’s innovative Skyactiv-X engine. Features include superior initial response, powerful torque, faithful linear response and free-revving performance. The engine is assisted by Mazda’s intelligent new M Hybrid system, which supports greater gains in fuel economy, and achieves higher levels of driving pleasure and environmental friendliness. I-ACTIV AWD Mazda’s evolved i-Activ AWD newly adds “four-wheel vertical load” detection and works in harmony with G-Vectoring Control Plus (GVC Plus) to control torque distribution between the front and rear wheels. As a result, it is fully capable of responding faithfully to the driver’s intentions, regardless of the driving scene. It also reduces overall mechanical loss by approximately 60% over the previous model and contributes to improved fuel economy. G-Vectoring Control Plus (GVC Plus) adds direct yaw moment control via the brakes. This enables the car to better handle emergency avoidance maneuvers and offers more confidence-inspiring controllability in various situations, including lane changes at high speeds and driving on slippery roads. SKYACTIV-VEHICLE ARCHITECTURE NEXT-GENERATION STRUCTURAL TECHNOLOGIES The seats adopt a basic structure designed to maintain the natural S-shaped curve of the spine. The seat cushion and lower seatback support the lower pelvis, upper pelvis and thighs to keep the pelvis in an upright position. Meanwhile, the upper seatback bolsters the gravity center of the rib cage. This structure enables the driver to stabilize his or her head in a natural fashion by shifting his or her pelvis and spine to maintain balance without any conscious effort. The body further evolves Mazda’s straight framework and continuous ring structure concept. New front-to-back connections complement the existing vertical and lateral connections of the previous body to form multi-directional ring structures. This increases rigidity while reducing lag in the transmission of energy, which helps maximize the function of the dampers and tires. By concentrating energy input from the road surface in specifically chosen locations and adopting a newly developed damping structure that helps absorb it, vibration that causes noise is reduced without increasing vehicle weight. Based on the concept of smoothing the transmission of force to the sprung mass over time, the suspension system uses MacPherson struts in the front and a newly developed torsion beam setup in the rear. A new spherical shape was adopted for the internal structure of the bushings combines with new suspension geometry to realize lag-free transmission and linear action. REDUCED NVH As a result of Mazda’s human research studies, development focused on three sound characteristics that directly impact cabin occupants. Those are sound volume, changes in pitch and tone over time, and the direction from which sounds originate. Suppressing noise generation and reducing its volume, while also controlling the fluctuations in and direction of sounds, are aimed not only at achieving a “quiet” cabin environment. Rather, the goal is to provide a “high-quality quietness” that is satisfying to all cabin occupants. To improve the basic insulation qualities key to reducing NVH, the new Mazda3 marks Mazda’s first application of a “two-wall” structure that leaves space between the body and carpeting on the floor. By considering the carpet and the body panel as two walls, and then designing them to match the characteristics of the fiber material attached to the carpet increases efficiency without increasing weight. The number of holes in the carpeting was also reduced wherever possible to significantly enhance sound insulation. Measures to deal with road noise focused on minimizing noise and vibrations, and to make any noises transmitted when the road surface changes reach the ears of cabin occupants in a linear fashion. Sound-absorbing functionality added to the headliner and floor mats effectively suppresses high-frequency noise. Tires with optimized vertical spring action and increased rigidity at possible entry points help prevent the transmission of unwanted vibrations to the cabin. Lag-free transmission of permitted sounds and vibrations create a more reassuring and comfortable cabin environment. SAFETY FEATURES DESIGNED TO EXCEL IN THE REAL WORLD The fundamental aims of Mazda Proactive Safety are to offer the driver confidence-building reassurance and to offer all cabin occupants a thoroughly enjoyable driving experience. Based on this philosophy, the development team worked hard to evolve basic safety technologies such as the driving position, pedal layout and good visibility, advanced i-Activsense technologies, as well as passive safety technologies designed to protect cabin occupants in the event a collision should occur. With an eye on the future, Mazda is constantly making efforts to further evolve the level of safety offered by its cars. The aim is to provide a safe and reassuring driving experience to everybody, from novice drivers with little time behind the wheel, to elderly drivers, and including passengers in the rear seats. Mazda is committed to further advancing its safety technologies as it works step by step toward making car accidents a thing of the past. ACTIVE SAFETY: I-ACTIVSENSE The new Mazda3 is available with Mazda’s newly developed Driver Monitoring system. The system uses both an infrared camera and infrared LED to observe the driver’s condition while driving. It monitors how wide open the driver’s eyelids are at any given time, the number of times he or she blinks, and also the angle of the mouth and face in order to determine the level of drowsiness or fatigue. It also monitors the driver’s line of sight and eye movement to determine when the driver is being inattentive. If the system judges that the situation has become dangerous, it sounds an alert to make the driver aware and works in conjunction with the Smart Brake Support (SBS) system to shorten the time required for the brake warning to sound. Front Cross Traffic Alert (FCTA) is available on the new Mazda3. The system uses newly adopted front side radars to detect other vehicles approaching from blind spots at the front right or left of the vehicle and alert the driver of their presence. This helps prevent a common cause of accidents, when cars enter a T intersection with a partially obscured view. Also available on the new Mazda3 is Mazda’s new Cruising & Traffic Support (CTS) system. CTS contributes to reducing driver fatigue by assisting with accelerator, brake pedal and steering operations when stuck in traffic jams on the highway. It also supports a safer, more reassuring and more comfortable driving experience in conditions that demand constant operation of the assisted functions. PASSIVE SAFETY The ratio of ultra-high-tensile steel rated of 980MPa or higher is greatly increased, from the 3% used on the previous model to 30% on the new Mazda3. This combines with the addition of a new perimeter beam and rear side frames that deform in an accordion-style pattern to create a solid body that can stand up to impact force and a frame structure that effectively absorbs energy. The new Mazda3 introduces a new knee airbag for the driver’s seat. It is not only a first on a Mazda car, but will be included as standard equipment worldwide. By suppressing forward motion of the driver’s body in the event of a collision, this new airbag contributes to fewer injuries to the driver’s legs, chest and Each of the side airbags is divided into a front and rear chamber. Using reduced air pressure in the forward chamber and higher pressure in the rear chamber reduces the load taken by the rib cage, while firmly holding the body in place. The hood adopts a new energy-absorbing inner structure designed to receive the impact of a pedestrian’s head in the initial moment of contact and then gradually dampen the force to more quickly absorb the impact energy. The front bumper is designed to support the thigh and shins if contact is made with a pedestrian’s legs while softening the blow to the knee area. This reduces the degree of injury to the knees and ligaments due to bending and twisting.
  24. The Passport is making a return to Honda, minus the help from Isuzu. Today at an event before the LA Auto Show, Honda unveiled the 2019 Passport which will slot between CR-V and Pilot in their crossover lineup. The Pilot DNA's is clearly evident in the Passport's design as the two have the same profile and design cues such as the front grille and sculpted sides. The Passport uses the same platform and 111-inch wheelbase as the Pilot, but is 6.5-inches shorter in overall length. Step inside and you might think that you're in either the Pilot or Ridgeline. The dashboard and center stack design in the Passport is the same as in those two models. One item we're happy to see is a volume knob for the 8-inch infotainment system. Power comes from the 3.5L V6 producing 280 horsepower and 262 pound-feet of torque. This is teamed with a nine-speed automatic and the choice of front or Honda's i-VTM4 all-wheel drive system. Along with a one-inch increase in ground-clearance, Honda claims that the Passport will be very capable off-road (we shall see). As for towing, the Passport is rated at 3,500 pounds for FWD and 5,000 for AWD. Honda isn't saying on pricing, but we would expect it to be slightly less than the $31,450 for the base Pilot LX. Sales are expected to begin early next year. Gallery: 2019 Honda Passport Source: Honda 2019 Honda Passport Makes World Debut: Adventure-Ready All-New 5-passenger SUV on Display at 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show Nov 27, 2018 - LOS ANGELES Passport provides a unique blend of on- and off-road prowess with exceptional occupant and cargo hauling capability 280-horsepower V6 and available sophisticated all-wheel drive system give Passport robust towing and off-road capabilities Standard Honda Sensing® safety and driver-assistive tech on all trims Multiple accessory options to personalize Passport ownership The all-new 2019 Honda Passport 5-passenger V6-powered SUV made its world debut today. Going on sale early next year, Passport provides a unique combination of on-road driving refinement and off-road adventure capability along with best-in-class interior space. The all-new Honda Passport will slot between the compact CR-V and three-row Pilot in Honda's award-winning SUV lineup. The model's reinforced unibody frame, powerful direct-injected i-VTEC® V6 engine, fully independent suspension and nimble steering make it an ideal choice for driving long distances or around town. In addition, the robust off-road capability offered by the available Honda i-VTM4™ torque-vectoring all-wheel drive and its four-mode Intelligent Traction Management system means Passport can tackle the kind of tough terrain normally reserved for less refined body-on-frame or off-road focused SUVs. "The all-new 2019 Honda Passport provides the on-road comfort and nimble handling buyers will appreciate on their daily commute with the robust off-road and all-weather capability that make for a great weekend adventure vehicle," said Henio Arcangeli, Jr., senior vice president of American Honda Motor Co., Inc. and general manager, Honda Division. "We saw an opportunity to deliver something that Honda is uniquely capable of making and the new Passport is in a great position to capture buyers looking for a more personal, powerful and capable Honda SUV." Designed and developed exclusively by Honda's North America R&D teams in Torrance, California, and Raymond, Ohio, the Passport and its V6 engine will be manufactured at the company's Lincoln, Alabama plant. Additional key product highlights include: Standard 280-horsepower, 3.5-liter, direct-injected V6 engine with i-VTEC® valvetrain mated to latest-generation 9-speed automatic transmission Available Intelligent Variable Torque Management (i-VTM4™) torque-vectoring all-wheel drive enhances on- and off-road performance Intelligent Traction Management system with available Snow, Sand and Mud modes help optimize performance for varying surface conditions Standard Honda Sensing® safety and driver-assistive technology Standard 20-inch alloy wheels and tires on all trims Best-in-class underfloor cargo storage Wide range of Honda accessories for active lifestyles, including Adventure and Urban accessory packages The all-new 2019 Honda Passport's rugged exterior design and stance is highlighted by standard 20-inch wheels, a matte-black grille, floating roof design, aggressive wheel arches, increased ride height and a tailgate design that emphasizes width. Inside, Passport offers best-in-class passenger space (115.9 cu.-ft.) and total interior volume (157.1 cu.-ft.) for carrying family, friends and weekend adventure gear. Passport features a large (best-in-class 2.5 cu.-ft.) segmented underfloor cargo compartment for carrying dirty gear or keeping valuables out of sight. Passport will be offered in four trims: the well-appointed Sport, upgraded EX-L, high-tech Touring, and the fully equipped Elite. All models except the line-topping Elite can be configured with 2- or all-wheel drive – all Elite trims come standard with all-wheel drive. All trims will feature 20-inch alloy wheels and tires, the Honda Sensing® suite of advanced safety and driver-assistive technology, LED headlights, fog lights, taillights and DRLs, Smart Start and Smart Entry and three-zone automatic climate control. EX-L and higher trims utilize Honda's latest Display Audio interface with an 8-inch touchscreen, a physical volume knob and Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™ integration. Additional exterior upgrades, depending on trim, include a power tailgate with available hands-free operation, a one-touch tilt/slide moonroof and heated auto-dimming and power folding side mirrors. Furthermore, the blind spot information system, rear cross traffic monitor, and front and rear parking sensors are available driver assistive technologies. Available premium features include second-row sunshades, wireless phone charging, embedded Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System, 4G LTE in-vehicle Wi-Fi, premium audio, and HondaLink® cloud-based services, including remote unlocking, concierge services, stolen vehicle tracking and more. Powertrain All 2019 Honda Passport trims are powered by a 3.5-liter V6 engine that makes 280 peak horsepower and 262 lb.-ft. of torque (SAE net), placing Passport in the top of its class for standard horsepower in a segment where some competitors offer less powerful 4-cylinder engines as standard equipment. The Honda i-VTEC® V6 is mated to the latest-generation of Honda's 9-speed automatic transmission (9AT) that is among the most advanced in the class, offering smooth and responsive power delivery. At the heart of the robust all-weather and off-road driving capabilities is Honda's available i-VTM4™ all-wheel drive system. Unlike most competing systems, i-VTM4™ uses active torque vectoring to send up to 70 percent of engine torque to the rear axle and 100 percent of that torque to either the left or right rear wheels. This capability gives Passport excellent handling in all conditions, such as rain-slicked or snowy roads or sandy trails, while also contributing to more responsive performance by overdriving the outside rear wheel in turns. In addition, the Intelligent Traction Management (ITM) is standard on both the front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive Passport. In all-wheel drive applications, the four-mode ITM systems works in conjunction with i-VTM4™, allowing drivers to customize powertrain performance for different weather and terrain, including sand, snow and mud. In front-wheel drive models, the system has two modes for normal and snow conditions. Tested in the world's harshest environments, including the sands of Dubai, muddy country roads of Russia, and snowbound trails in Minnesota, the combination of i-VTM4™ and Intelligent Traction Management make Passport more capable off road than many unibody SUVs, giving drivers the confidence to tackle not just wet or rainy conditions, but a variety of harsh off-road terrains. Passport is well equipped for towing, with 3,500-pound capacity on front-wheel drive models and 5,000 pounds on all-wheel drive models when both are equipped with the optional towing package. Passport is the gateway to adventure being able to tow camping trailers, boats, or "toy" haulers, over more rugged terrain. The standard multi-view rear-view camera makes connecting to a trailer easier than ever with its "overhead" option giving the driver a bird's eye view of the hitch and trailer. Exterior Design and Platform Honda's most rugged light truck yet, Passport's expressive design leaves no doubt of its adventure-seeking mission and is highlighted by its higher ride height, standard 20-inch wheels, 245/50R all-weather tires and sporty styling cues, including a matte black grille and bumper, blackout headlights and black wheels. LED headlight accents, gloss black trim, a "floating" C-pillar, and chrome exhaust finishers hint at Passport's around-town sophistication. Trim-exclusive wheel designs are available across the lineup, and Touring and Elite trims offer upsized 265/45R20 tires as standard equipment. Beyond good looks, Passport's design offers superior functionality as well. Ground clearance is up 0.5 inches on front-wheel drive models and 1.1 inches on all-wheel drive models compared to Passport's three-row sibling, Pilot, while its shorter overall length and shortened rear overhang offer improved approach, departure and breakover angles, suitable for more rugged terrain. Passport's wider wheels and tires complement its athletic and sporty stance and support both responsive around-town handling and increased grip off-road. A ruggedly styled front end stands out on the road with its scratch-resistant matte finish grill suited to the off-road adventures Passport is designed for. Passport is based on Honda's Global Light Truck platform and shares much of its underlying structure with the three-row Pilot SUV and Ridgeline pickup, including its highly rigid unibody construction. This platform has a fully boxed floor that is sophisticated yet strong with a four-wheel independent suspension, with MacPherson struts in front and a multilink independent rear. The latest generation of Honda's proprietary Advanced Compatibility Engineering™ (ACE™) body structure, provides outstanding frontal collision protection and collision compatibility with larger and smaller vehicles. Interior Design and Packaging Passport's modern and sophisticated interior design offers ample space for five people and provides class-leading passenger volume of 115.9 cu.-ft. and best-in-class total interior volume of 157.1 cu.-ft. From Sport to Elite trims, Passport features high-quality interior appointments including attractive and durable cloth on Sport or perforated leather on EX-L, Touring and Elite trims, a blackout headliner, and generous use of soft-touch surfaces on the dash and doors. Passport's interior also offers class-leading utility. Behind the second row of seats is a cargo area generously sized for weekend camping trips or excursions to the home improvement store, with 41.2 cu. ft. of space, expandable to 77.9 cu. ft. with the second row folded flat, which is more than enough to accommodate mountain bikes or a week's worth of camping gear. From the cargo area, the second-row seatbacks fold with the push of a button, and Passport's main cargo floor is reversible between carpeted and easy-to-clean hard plastic surfaces. Passport features class-leading underfloor storage, with 2.5 cu. ft. of easily accessible compartmented storage, which can be accessorized with removable washable bins, including a custom bin for storing the available accessory trailer hitch receiver. There's also plenty of space for small stuff. Passport offers generous storage space for front seat passengers, including a huge center console bin between the front seats with a rolling cover that serves as a tray when closed. Additional storage is found in the doors and ahead of the push-button gear selector. Technology Packed with available modern amenities such as an audio and connectivity system with Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™ integration and a digital driver's meter, Passport delivers all the modern technology that today's SUV buyers demand. Passport Sport trim comes standard with a 215-watt audio system with a 5-inch display monitor and 6 speakers, plus a subwoofer. Passport EX-L, Touring and Elite trims feature Honda's 8-inch Display Audio touchscreen system with Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™ smartphone integration and manual power/volume knob. The Display Audio system uses gestures common to smartphones and tablets, such as swipe, tap and pinch, to control the vehicle's audio system, display settings and other advanced features. Intuitive and easy to use, with a simplified menu structure, it also offers customizable shortcuts for commonly used features and customizable app locations. Passport Touring and Elite trims come with a 590-watt 10-speaker premium audio system. Passport's instrument cluster uses a 7-inch Thin Film Transistor (TFT) screen with a wide range of information content. In addition to displaying typical vehicle functions such as vehicle speed and RPM, the full-color digital meter includes a Multi-Information Display (MID) with customizable features, such as audio system information, a detailed trip computer, phone information, and turn-by-turn route guidance on Passport models equipped with navigation. Drivers navigate the new TFT using steering wheel controls designed for intuitive operation, such as Bluetooth® phone buttons that are more easily distinguished by touch. Touring and Elite trims of Passport provide 4G LTE in-vehicle Wi-Fi TCU that can supporting up to seven devices and a free 90-day/3GB trial period AT&T data plan. The TCU is key to Passport's support of numerous HondaLink® cloud-based services. Using an app, owners can keep track of maintenance and even book appointments, remember their Passport's location and numerous other functions. Safety and Driver Assistance Technology The Honda Sensing® suite of advanced safety and driver-assistive technologies is standard on all 2019 Passport trims. Honda Sensing® helps provide greater awareness of driving conditions around the vehicle, in some cases helps drivers maintain lane position and, under certain conditions slowing or even stopping the vehicle if it detects a potential front collision. Honda Sensing® includes Collision Mitigation Braking System™ (CMBS™) featuring Forward Collison Warning (FCW), Road Departure Mitigation (RDM) including Lane Departure Warning (LDW), Lane Keeping Assistance System (LKAS) and Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC). The new Passport was designed to provide a high level of active and passive safety performance and targets an NCAP 5-Star Overall Vehicle Score safety rating and an IIHS TOP SAFETY PICK rating. All tested 2019 model-year Honda vehicles achieve an NCAP 5-star Overall Vehicle Score safety rating. All Passport trims come equipped with a Multi-Angle Rearview Camera with overhead "bird's eye" view, ideal for trailer hookups. Additional available driver-assistive technologies include dynamic guidelines for the rearview camera, blind spot Information system (EX-L, Touring and Elite) with Rear Cross-Traffic Detection, and front and rear parking sensors (Touring and Elite). Accessories A wide variety of Honda Genuine Accessories are designed for Passport, including roof boxes of various sizes, a roof basket, and roof-mounted bike, kayak and ski or snowboard racks. Inside, Passport owners can weatherproof their cargo area with hard plastic covers for the floor, sides, and seatbacks. The underfloor storage can be divided with separate, removable and washable bins. For those seeking a more sophisticated urban look, a variety of cosmetic exterior items are available, such as a colored graphics package, undercarriage welcome lights, and lighted door sills. From the outset, Passport will be available with two accessory packages. The Adventure Package adds running boards, a trailer hitch, fender flares and more for outdoor weekend getaways. The Urban Package adds front and rear underbody spoilers, unique 20-inch wheels, cargo storage bins and roof rails and crossbars for a sophisticated in-town look.
  25. For those wondering when Bentley was planning to introduce a drop-top version of the second-generation Continental GT, wonder no more. This week, Bentley has revealed the 2019 Continental GT Convertible. There isn't any significant design changes aside from the roof being lopped off. The new power-folding soft top opens and closes in 19 seconds at speeds up to 30 mph. Bentley is offering a tweed option for the roof. The interior is lavishly appointed with impressive materials and a new neckwarmer system to keep warm when the top is down. Power comes from a 6.0L twin-turbo W12 producing 626 horsepower and 664 pound-feet of torque. This is paired with an eight-speed dual-clutch transmission and all-wheel drive. 0-60 mph takes 3.7 seconds - just a tenth slower than the coupe. Not bad since the convertible comes in a hefty 5,322 pounds. Bentley hasn't announced a launch timeframe or price for the Continental GT Convertible. Gallery: 2019 Bentley Continental GT Convertible Source: Bentley ALL-NEW BENTLEY CONTINENTAL GT CONVERTIBLE: THE PINNACLE OPEN-TOP GRAND TOURER Third generation model represents all Bentley knows about creating the world’s definitive Grand Tourers Beautiful, roof up or down, GT Convertible’s flowing, elegant exterior styling is accented with muscular, sculptural lines Finest handcrafted materials and in-car technologies harmonise to create a connected, personalised cabin Bentley Rotating Display offers customers option of a digital detox Elegantly tailored convertible roof sweeps open in 19 seconds to reveal exquisite, luxurious handcrafted interior Contemporary tweed Convertible roof available for the first time Serenity and style: unique Z-fold roof offers sportier appearance and three-decibel noise reduction New Convertible GT cabin as quiet as previous generation Coupe model All-season open-top Grand Touring enabled thanks to sophisticated luxury features Powerful and responsive driving experience from 635 PS W12 engine, eight-speed dual-clutch transmission and latest chassis technologies Convertible body-in-white now 20 per cent lighter, five per cent stiffer 0-100 km/h in 3.8 seconds (0-60 mph in 3.7 seconds); top speed of 333 km/h (207 mph) (Crewe, 26 November 2018) Bentley is introducing the all-new Continental GT Convertible. Designed, engineered and handcrafted in Britain – and representing all Bentley knows about creating the world’s most stylish and elegant Grand Tourers – the GT Convertible is the very essence of the luxury brand. Adrian Hallmark, Chairman and Chief Executive, Bentley Motors, said: “Elegant understatement that forces you to look; engineering excellence you’ll take for granted – the extraordinary breadth of capabilities offered by the new Continental GT Convertible is unique and can only be offered by our noble British brand. We have been building luxury Grand Tourers since the company was founded in 1919 and, as we approach our centenary year, the Continental GT Convertible joins a highly acclaimed range – arguably the strongest and most technologically advanced portfolio of products the world has ever seen in one luxury brand.” Elegant and sculptural exterior styling harmonises perfectly with an exquisite handcrafted cabin, featuring the highest quality leathers and sustainably sourced veneers. The tailored convertible roof can be deployed or stowed in just 19 seconds, with the car travelling at speeds of up to 30 mph (50 km/h). This transforms the Continental GT Convertible from a luxurious coupe into an open-top Grand Tourer at the touch of a button. Seven different fabric hood colours are available, including an authentic tweed finish for the first time. A newly designed neckwarmer (which is both warmer and quieter than in the previous generation model), is seamlessly integrated into the heated Comfort Seats, optimising efficiency and airflow around the electrically adjustable headrests. The styling highlight of the new neckwarmer is a chrome centre vane that stretches the full width of the duct, echoing Bentley’s famous ‘bullseye’ vents. Combined with a heated steering wheel, seat heaters and new heated armrests, these sophisticated comfort features create a luxurious driving experience in all environments. The all-new Continental GT Convertible heightens the sensory experience of open-air motoring with exhilarating performance. A powerful 6.0-litre Bentley W12 engine is mated to a dual-clutch eight-speed transmission. [WLTP drive cycle: fuel consumption, mpg (l/100km) - Combined 20.2 (14.0). Combined CO₂- 317g/km. NEDC drive cycle equivalent: fuel consumption, mpg (l/100km) – Combined 22.8 (12.4). Combined CO₂ - 284g/km.] The new powertrain uses the latest engine management technology to produce 635 PS (626 bhp) and 900 Nm (664 lb.ft.) of torque, and accelerate to 100 km/h in 3.8 seconds (0-60 mph in 3.7 seconds), on to a top speed of 333 km/h (207 mph). The new Continental GT Convertible also showcases major evolutions in Bentley’s unique application of technology. An advanced, fully digital, driver-focused instrument panel and Bentley Rotating Display for the driver are among the suite of innovations. The latter features an impressive 12.3” touchscreen housed in a three-sided unit, which revolves from pure veneer to reveal either a touchscreen or three elegant analogue dials – offering customers the option of a digital detox when desired. Elegant, sophisticated and refined, the all-new Continental GT Convertible is the pinnacle of open-top luxury Grand Touring. Effortless Elegance Meets Power and Style Unmistakably a Bentley – the third generation Continental GT Convertible retains the elegance and style of its forebears. More sculpted and sharply defined, the all-new body and materials combine to create a truly beautiful car – roof up or down. The Convertible’s profile is longer and lower than its forebear due to the positioning of the front wheels 135 mm further forward. This has allowed the bonnet to be extended and the nose to be lowered. The key signature power lines of its coupe sibling still dominate, flowing back towards the muscular rear haunches. The lighting on the Continental GT Convertible uses the latest LED Matrix technology, but it is the design of the headlamps that truly sets them apart. Inspired by the finest cut-crystal glasses, the internal surfaces are transparent with sharply defined edges that catch the light like a diamond. The result is similar to that of an illuminated gem – an effect which is magnified when the optional welcome sequence gradually illuminates the headlights as you approach the car. The taillights also feature the cut-crystal effect, highlighting the three-dimensional depth of the optics. The all-new Continental GT Convertible has 21” Five Tri-Spoke wheels as standard, with the option of 10-Spoke and 22” Five Open-Spoke wheels. These three wheel designs are offered in a selection of ten polished and painted finishes. Convertible customers can choose from the palette of 17 colours, including Beluga, Onyx and Portofino. An optional extended range of colours is also available – as well as the option of full bespoke colour-matching for Bentley customers. These can be coordinated with seven exterior roof colours. A Handcrafted Luxurious Cabin The exquisite interior of the all-new Continental GT Convertible is a showcase for Bentley’s unrivalled expertise in the use of natural materials, fully revealed to the world when the elegant roof is lowered. From the highest-quality leathers, to rare, sustainably sourced veneers, such as Koa and Dark Fiddleback Eucalyptus, the cabin is a triumph for craftsmanship and artisanal skill. Unique dual-veneer is offered, with over 10 square metres of wood used in every car. Customers have the choice of a polished wooden steering wheel too. The dashboard is styled and sculpted by long, flowing wings that mirror the shape of the Bentley badge. Continental GT Convertible customers can choose from eight interior hood lining colours, including Red, Blue and Magnolia. The centre console is finished to match the lower fascia, but can be specified in a new technical finish that is inspired by the delicate mechanical surfacing inside the finest mechanical Swiss watches, known as Côtes de Genève. This surface is machined onto 0.6 mm-thick aluminium and is created by machining from side to side to create a linear pattern. Each row is 5 mm wide and machined at an angle to give a truly three-dimensional finish, with each pass of the machine making a minute step of 0.5 mm. New types of luxurious haptic finishes adorn the interior of the Continental GT Convertible for greater sensory, as well as visual, enjoyment. In some areas, pillow knurling replaces the traditional mechanical knurling, for a softer, more refined feel on switches and controls, while diamond knurling adds a luxurious touch using a detailed three-dimensional faceted surface. The 20-way adjustable Comfort Seats set new industry standards in comfort and refinement. Smooth centre panels allow maximum efficiency for the ventilation, heating and massage functions, while the adjustable bolsters retain the signature Bentley quilting. There is also the option of Hand Cross Stitch finishing. A choice of three audio systems is offered in the new Continental GT Convertible. The standard system features 10 speakers and 650 Watts, while a Bang & Olufsen 1,500 W, 16-speaker system with illuminated speaker grilles is available, benefiting from the first automotive application of the BeoSonic system – a new way for tone setting with a simple, intuitive one-touch user interface. A Naim 2,200 W, 18-speaker system with Active Bass Transducers built into the front seats and eight sound modes is offered for the true audiophile. Behind the wheel, the technological advancements in the new Continental GT Convertible continue. The driver-orientated instrument panel is fully digital and can be personalised by the driver. The Bentley Rotating Display offers the choice between a digital or analogue journey. At first glance there appears to be no screen in the centre of the dashboard. Instead, the veneer flows uninterrupted across the dashboard, while a thin chrome bezel behind the steering wheel surrounds a digital instrument display. When the engine start button is pressed, however, the veneer in the middle of the dashboard glides silently forward and rotates to reveal Bentley’s largest-ever touchscreen, a 12.3” high-definition-quality digital MMI display, elegantly designed by Bentley with a customer-configurable home screen with three windows able to display the driver’s preferred functions, for example, navigation, media and telephone. The user interface is designed to be akin to a modern mobile phone and menus are structured to be instantly intuitive. The third side on the Bentley Rotating Display reveals three elegant analogue dials displaying outside temperature, a compass and chronometer. Such an innovative use of traditional elements underscores Bentley’s unique commitment to the past and the future, and offers customers the choice of digital or analogue display or clean, calm cabin. The new Continental benefits from features designed to keep both driver and passengers connected at all times. Apple CarPlay, the smartest and quickest way to integrate the functionality of Apple devices in a car is connected via a USB port. Customer journeys are streamlined with features designed to improve navigation. Online search, powered by Google makes finding destinations simple, while real-time traffic information keeps the driver informed of current length or changes in congestion. In emergency situations, Private eCall provides instant access to emergency services for ultimate peace of mind when travelling. Exceptional Optionality including a Tweed Convertible Roof The all-new Continental GT Convertible redefines personalisation with paint, leather, veneer and lifestyle options that are virtually unlimited and tailored to the individual. The standard palette alone comprises 17 exterior paint colours, with up to 70 hues available in the extended range. There are also 15 luxurious carpet options, eight different handcrafted veneers (with a further four dual veneer options) and 15 choices of interior trim hide, which means that customers are able to specify their own choice of luxury finish. Seven exterior roof colours are available, including for the first time a contemporary interpretation of traditional British tweed. Black, Blue, Claret and Grey are among the other options. Furthermore, eight interior roof liner finishes are offered, ranging from New Red to Magnolia. The unique Z-fold convertible roof system represents a major improvement both in terms of refinement and packaging. The roof, with its sealing system improvements and acoustic treatments, contributes to a three-decibel reduction in overall noise levels compared to its predecessor at typical cruising speeds. An entirely new combination of roof insulating materials and operating mechanism, combined with sealing system improvements and acoustic treatments, have created a Convertible Grand Tourer that is as quiet as the previous generation Continental GT Coupe. Two technology option packs are offered at launch: City Specification for urban journeys and the Touring Specification for long-distance driving, both curated to optimise the customer experience. City Specification includes hands-free boot opening, pedestrian warning, traffic-sign recognition and city braking systems as well as a top-view camera. The Touring Specification pack, meanwhile, offers adaptive cruise control with traffic-jam assist, active lane assist, a heads-up display, night vision with an infrared camera, and pre-sense braking. The Mulliner Driving Specification adds a more sporting look to the car with 22” lightweight forged alloy wheels, unique ‘diamond in diamond’ quilting, embroidered Bentley emblems, additional veneer options, a jewelled-finish fuel filler, sports pedals and indented leather headliner. Customers can also choose personalised stitching in the front and rear of the car and personalised treadplates. As with all Bentleys, the Continental GT Convertible can also be handed over to the highly skilled and dedicated craftspeople at Mulliner, Bentley’s personal commissioning division, who will respond to bespoke customer requirements. Sublime Power: The Beating Heart of Bentley The all-new Continental GT Convertible is offered at launch with Bentley’s 6.0-litre, W12 TSI engine. Designed, developed and handbuilt in Crewe, it is the most advanced 12-cylinder engine in the world. The new powertrain uses the very latest engine management technology, with 300 million software calculations per second. It produces 635 PS (626 bhp) and 900 Nm (664 lb.ft.) of torque, accelerating the Convertible to 100 km/h in 3.8 seconds (0-60 mph in 3.7 seconds), on to a top speed of 333 km/h (207 mph). The W12 TSI combines high-pressure direct fuel injection with low-pressure injection. The combination of these two systems maximises refinement, lowers particulate emissions and optimises power and torque delivery. [WLTP drive cycle: fuel consumption, mpg (l/100km) - Combined 20.2 (14.0). Combined CO₂- 317g/km. NEDC drive cycle equivalent: fuel consumption, mpg (l/100km) – Combined 22.8 (12.4). Combined CO₂ - 284g/km.] The new engine utilises Start-Stop technology and, in Bentley’s advanced application, coasting is also made possible. The engine rests not only when the vehicle is stationary but also at near-to-stop speeds. Bentley’s Variable Displacement system shuts down half of the engine under defined conditions. Intake and exhaust valves, fuel injection and ignition are all shut down on defined cylinders, with the engine running as a six-cylinder for improved efficiency. Significantly, a new dual-mass flywheel replaces the torque converter, to dampen out the oscillations of the driveline and provide a fittingly smooth power delivery for luxury touring. The dual-clutch eight-speed transmission provides smooth acceleration and impressively quick gearshifts, hallmarks of the Continental GT character, as well as combined fuel economy of 22.8 mpg (UK) or 12.4 L/100 km (NEDC combined). A new Active All-Wheel-Drive System replaces the traditional 40:60 power delivery split between front and rear wheels respectively, instead varying the front-to-rear torque split dependent upon the driving situation. Unrivalled Grand Touring Ride and Handling The third generation of Continental GT Convertible features Bentley Dynamic Ride, an advanced 48-volt roll control system for unrivalled car control. The system controls and adjusts the electronic actuators on the anti-roll bar of each axle and so improves handling and ride comfort, as well as making the car feel lighter and more precise. This system instantly counteracts lateral rolling forces when cornering and ensures maximum tyre-to-road contact to deliver class-leading ride comfort and exceptional handling. While conventional anti-roll bars present a compromise between body control and ride comfort, Bentley’s active system provides variable torsional resistance, allowing the Continental GT Convertible to be both dynamically capable and comfortable for all occupants at all times. The use of a 48-volt system results in silent, instantaneous responses and sufficient power on hand to deal with all road surfaces. Through Bentley’s Drive Dynamics Control different modes can be selected: Comfort mode, Bentley mode or Sport mode; the suspension, engine, gearbox and other chassis systems will modify to match the selected drive mode. Alternatively, the driver can personalise his or her own dynamic settings. The air suspension on the new Continental GT Convertible uses three-chamber air springs which give the car 60 per cent more air volume in the softest setting than the previous model. This allowed Bentley’s engineers more scope for tuning the suspension to improve the ride comfort and dynamic character of the car. The system offers the scope to vary from sporting spring stiffness to luxury limousine refinement depending upon which mode the driver has selected. As a foundation for this impressive handling, the Continental GT Convertible boasts a body-in-white structure that manages to be both stiffer and lighter than its predecessor. This five per cent improvement in torsional rigidity and 20 per cent reduction in structural weight are achievable thanks to the intelligent utilisation of aluminium and high-tensile steel in the platform. Electric Power-Assisted Steering (EPAS) is also featured on the Continental GT Convertible. The new system improves feedback to the driver, while providing isolation from unwanted road disturbances. The steering system features a variable rack ratio, allowing increased response with higher steering angles to aid manoeuvrability whilst maintaining excellent stability at high speeds. Another key feature is the latest-generation Continuous Damping Control (CDC), which constantly adjusts the damper forces to optimise comfort. The system continually measures the velocity and distance between the wheels and the body at each corner and also adjusts the air volume in the springs if necessary to ensure the optimum balance of comfort and handling. Both front and rear axles are of a lightweight aluminium construction, with multilink design at the front and rear. The braking system is the most powerful iron system ever fitted to a Bentley, with a total of 28 pistons. Front brake discs measuring 420 mm are a two-piece construction utilising a cast-iron friction ring and aluminium mounting bell. Front calipers feature ten pistons each, while rear calipers contain four pistons each that clamp 380 mm single-piece discs. Brakes of this scale provide the reliable, repeatable stopping performance inherently important to a 200+ mph sporting Grand Tourer. Bentley has worked together with Pirelli to create bespoke tyres for the new Continental GT Convertible right from the very beginning of the design phase. The car runs exclusively on Pirelli P Zero tyres, using a different tyre size between front and rear axles for the first time, to enhance dynamic ability. During the development process, Pirelli’s engineers sat alongside their counterparts from Bentley, driving and refining the car-tyre package until the perfect balance was reached between performance and comfort. The latest material compounds help the tyre respond more directly to driver inputs, ensuring a dynamic experience that is balanced and communicative. The P Zero tyre fitted to the Bentley also has Pirelli’s Noise Cancelling System which reduces road noise coming into the cabin. At the same time, rolling resistance is also improved on the latest P Zero tyres, creating less friction against the road without compromising grip. As a result, both wet and dry grip represent a step forward, with a noticeably reduced risk of aquaplaning. View full article

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