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  1. 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.
  2. 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
  3. 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
  4. 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.
  5. 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
  6. 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
  7. 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
  8. 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.
  9. 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
  10. 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.
  11. 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
  12. 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.
  13. Last week, we reported on a CARB document providing some details about the upcoming Subaru Crosstrek Plug-In Hybrid. The document said the model would return "an electric range at 25.650 miles based on the Urban Dynamometer Driving Schedule - replicates city driving conditions." This is similar to the Toyota Prius Prime which lends its hybrid system to the Crosstrek. But we found ourselves a bit skeptical considering the Crosstrek is heavier and uses an all-wheel drive system - things that reduce range. Hopefully, Subaru would provide some details on it when it arrived at the LA Auto Show next week. But Subaru has decided to surprise us by unveiling the Crosstrek Hybrid today. Let's get to that all important question, how far will the model travel on electric power alone? According to Subaru, it is 17 miles on a full charge. Slightly disappointing to say in the least since we were kind of hoping for at least 20. It does slightly better when it comes to fuel economy figures: 90 MPGe combined with the battery charged up and 35 MPG on the combined cycle with the gas engine only. The Crosstrek Hybrid's powertrain is comprised of a retuned version of the 2.0L boxer-four engine (137 horsepower and 134 pound-feet), two electric motors, and an 8.8-kWh lithium-ion battery pack. Total output is rated at 148 horsepower and 149 pound-feet. One interesting tidbit is Subaru keeps the single multi-plate transfer clutch at the transmission output to keep power flowing to all wheels - no matter whether it is gas or electric. Recharging takes about two hours on a 240-Volt charger and five hours on a 120-Volt charger. Exterior changes for the Crosstrek Hybrid include a charging port on the opposite side of the gas filler, silver accents, and two-tone 18-inch wheels. Going hybrid on the Crosstrek is expensive. When it arrives at dealers towards the end of the year, the Crosstrek Hybrid will begin at $35,970 (includes a $975 destination charge). Gallery: 2019 Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid Source: Subaru All-New Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid To Debut At Los Angeles Auto Show First-ever Subaru plug-in hybrid vehicle New Subaru StarDrive Technology Standard Subaru Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive Up to 90 MPGe Full range of 480 miles when using both gas and electric power EyeSight® Driver Assist Technology standard November 19, 2018 , Los Angeles, CA - Subaru of America, Inc. today introduced its first-ever plug-in hybrid vehicle, the 2019 Crosstrek Hybrid. The highly anticipated SUV offers real all-wheel drive capability in a hybrid package. Arriving at Subaru retailers near the end of this year, the 2019 Crosstrek Hybrid will also feature unique exterior and interior styling and new in-vehicle technology. The new SUV also qualifies for High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) permits in many states, including CA, MD and NY. The Crosstrek has become the brand’s third-best-selling model in America since its debut six years ago. Priced at $34,995 plus $975 for destination and delivery*, the 2019 Crosstrek Hybrid is the most powerful and most efficient version of the versatile compact SUV ever. The Hybrid features the new Subaru StarDrive Technology that uniquely integrates electric motors, a 2.0-liter direct-injection SUBARU BOXER® engine, Subaru Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive, and a new Lineartronic CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission). Subaru StarDrive Technology employs two electric motors. One motor functions as an engine starter. Conversely, it can be powered by the engine to function as a generator for the hybrid battery. The second motor powers the vehicle for hybrid and electric driving modes. It also charges the hybrid battery during regenerative braking. The Crosstrek Hybrid is capable of speeds up to 65 mph when in full electric mode and is a full second faster from 0 to 60 mph than the standard Crosstrek. The new powertrain not only yields quicker acceleration, but up to 90 MPGe with a total range of 480 miles. The high-capacity lithium-ion battery, mounted beneath the cargo area, enables the Hybrid to achieve an EV range of 17 miles, which covers a variety of trips. An electronically controlled brake system has been developed. Braking control has been optimized to distribute braking force between the regenerative brakes and mechanical brakes, thereby maximizing the amount of power regeneration to improve fuel efficiency and extended battery life. Like the Crosstrek, the 2019 Crosstrek Hybrid is built around the Subaru Global Platform that was designed to accommodate hybrid and electric powertrains. The standard Linerartronic CVT features X-MODE and Hill Descent Control for enhanced performance in low-friction and off-road conditions. The Crosstrek Hybrid’s 8.7-inches of ground clearance and 1,000 lb. towing capacity provide versatility in both off-road and city driving. The 60/40-split fold-down rear seats offer up to 43.1 cu.ft of cargo space, enough space for camping gear or luggage. The standard SI-DRIVE is a powertrain performance management system that allows the driver to tailor the vehicle’s throttle characteristics by choosing between “Intelligent” and “Sport” modes. Standard Active Torque Vectoring, first introduced on the WRX model line, applies light brake pressure to the inside front wheel while cornering for improved control and handling. Exclusive to the 2019 Crosstrek Hybrid is a striking new exterior color, Lagoon Blue Pearl, one of four available hues. The SUV is further distinguished by blue headlight projector rings and unique silver metallic finish on the front grille, lower front bumper and body cladding, and fog light accents. The low-profile roof rails and spoiler in black finish, along with unique 18-inch wheels in black with machine finish, accentuate this model’s sleek styling. A “Plug-In Hybrid” badge adorns the rear gate and fenders, and “Plug-In” text is imprinted in the charge port door. The Hybrid’s interior features exclusive new high-contrast Gray and Navy-Blue leather seats, door panels and armrests. The cabin is complemented with blue stitching and accent panels throughout. The fun-to-drive Crosstrek Hybrid comes with an array of standard features including the 8.0-inch STARLINK Multimedia Plus system with Apple CarPlay™ and Android™ Auto; Keyless Access with Push-Button Start; Automatic Climate Control; Tire Pressure Monitoring System with individual tire pressure display; power windows with auto-up/auto-down on both driver and passenger sides; power door locks and side mirrors; LED fog lights and dual rear USB ports. The standard All-Weather Package includes heated front seats, windshield wiper de-icer and heated exterior mirrors. The leather-wrapped steering wheel includes audio, Bluetooth® and SI-Drive control switches. For easy recognition while driving, the high-grade instrument panel includes a 4.2-inch color LCD as well as a power meter for real-time power output and regeneration. The high-grade multifunction display located above the center stack adds exclusive hybrid functions including driving and charging screens. With safety as a top priority, the 2019 Crosstrek Hybrid comes standard with a suite of driver-assist and safety features. EyeSight Driver Assist Technology includes Pre-Collision Braking and Throttle Management; Adaptive Cruise Control; Lane Departure and Sway Warning; and Lane Keep Assist. For the first time in a Subaru vehicle, a Driver Assist Indicator has been installed at the top of the combination meter to increase visibility of EyeSight status or other warnings. Standard Steering Responsive Headlights illuminate curves as the vehicle steers into them. Reverse Automatic Braking can apply the vehicle’s brakes if an obstacle is detected while reversing. LED High Beam Assist encourages the driver to maximize the use of high beams without worry of impairing oncoming traffic. Blind Spot Detection with Lane Change Assist and Cross Traffic Alert is also standard. Further, the Hybrid features a Pedestrian Alert System that provides an audible warning to pedestrians within the proximity of the vehicle when it is traveling below 20 mph. Like all 2019 Crosstrek models, the Hybrid comes standard with seven airbags including driver and front passenger frontal airbags, side curtain airbags, side pelvis/torso airbags and a driver’s knee airbag. An option package priced at $2,500 offers a power moonroof, heated steering wheel and STARLINK 8.0-inch Multimedia Navigation system with voice activated navigation powered by TomTom. Also included with the package is a Harman Kardon 8-speaker system with 432-watt equivalent amplifier. SUBARU STARLINK In-Vehicle Technology provides hands-free connectivity and entertainment through the vehicle’s multimedia or navigation system. All STARLINK Multimedia systems offer a high-resolution touchscreen; smartphone integration with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Aha™, and Pandora®; Bluetooth hands-free phone and audio streaming connectivity; AM/FM stereo; and Rear Vision Camera as standard. The 8.0-inch Multimedia Plus includes a single-disc CD player and voice activated controls for phone and Near Field Communication to the list of features. The top-of-the-line 8.0-inch Multimedia with Navigation adds navigation powered by TomTom, voice activated navigation and over-the-air updates. New features for SUBARU STARLINK Connected Services, exclusive to Crosstrek Hybrid, include Remote Climate Control and Remote Battery Charging Timer. The vehicle’s climate control can function without starting the engine, so it can warm up or cool down even when garaged. The Remote Battery Charging Timer allows a user to manage the vehicle charging schedule and monitor its status. The Hybrid comes with a 10-year complimentary subscription to SUBARU STARLINK Safety and Security Plus package, which includes Remote Climate Control and Remote Battery Charging Timer, SOS emergency assistance and automatic collision notification. It also features maintenance notifications, monthly vehicle health report and diagnostic alerts, stolen vehicle recovery service, vehicle security alarm notification, remote lock/unlock, remote horn and lights, and remote vehicle locator and parenting features including boundary, speed and curfew alerts. The STARLINK Concierge package is available and features in-vehicle assistance with restaurant and hotel reservations, purchasing tickets for sporting/theater events and scheduling service appointments. *Destination & Delivery is $975 and may vary in the following states: CT, HI, MA, ME, NH, NJ, NY, RI and VT. D&D is $1,125 for retailers in Alaska. View full article
  14. Last week, we reported on a CARB document providing some details about the upcoming Subaru Crosstrek Plug-In Hybrid. The document said the model would return "an electric range at 25.650 miles based on the Urban Dynamometer Driving Schedule - replicates city driving conditions." This is similar to the Toyota Prius Prime which lends its hybrid system to the Crosstrek. But we found ourselves a bit skeptical considering the Crosstrek is heavier and uses an all-wheel drive system - things that reduce range. Hopefully, Subaru would provide some details on it when it arrived at the LA Auto Show next week. But Subaru has decided to surprise us by unveiling the Crosstrek Hybrid today. Let's get to that all important question, how far will the model travel on electric power alone? According to Subaru, it is 17 miles on a full charge. Slightly disappointing to say in the least since we were kind of hoping for at least 20. It does slightly better when it comes to fuel economy figures: 90 MPGe combined with the battery charged up and 35 MPG on the combined cycle with the gas engine only. The Crosstrek Hybrid's powertrain is comprised of a retuned version of the 2.0L boxer-four engine (137 horsepower and 134 pound-feet), two electric motors, and an 8.8-kWh lithium-ion battery pack. Total output is rated at 148 horsepower and 149 pound-feet. One interesting tidbit is Subaru keeps the single multi-plate transfer clutch at the transmission output to keep power flowing to all wheels - no matter whether it is gas or electric. Recharging takes about two hours on a 240-Volt charger and five hours on a 120-Volt charger. Exterior changes for the Crosstrek Hybrid include a charging port on the opposite side of the gas filler, silver accents, and two-tone 18-inch wheels. Going hybrid on the Crosstrek is expensive. When it arrives at dealers towards the end of the year, the Crosstrek Hybrid will begin at $35,970 (includes a $975 destination charge). Gallery: 2019 Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid Source: Subaru All-New Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid To Debut At Los Angeles Auto Show First-ever Subaru plug-in hybrid vehicle New Subaru StarDrive Technology Standard Subaru Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive Up to 90 MPGe Full range of 480 miles when using both gas and electric power EyeSight® Driver Assist Technology standard November 19, 2018 , Los Angeles, CA - Subaru of America, Inc. today introduced its first-ever plug-in hybrid vehicle, the 2019 Crosstrek Hybrid. The highly anticipated SUV offers real all-wheel drive capability in a hybrid package. Arriving at Subaru retailers near the end of this year, the 2019 Crosstrek Hybrid will also feature unique exterior and interior styling and new in-vehicle technology. The new SUV also qualifies for High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) permits in many states, including CA, MD and NY. The Crosstrek has become the brand’s third-best-selling model in America since its debut six years ago. Priced at $34,995 plus $975 for destination and delivery*, the 2019 Crosstrek Hybrid is the most powerful and most efficient version of the versatile compact SUV ever. The Hybrid features the new Subaru StarDrive Technology that uniquely integrates electric motors, a 2.0-liter direct-injection SUBARU BOXER® engine, Subaru Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive, and a new Lineartronic CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission). Subaru StarDrive Technology employs two electric motors. One motor functions as an engine starter. Conversely, it can be powered by the engine to function as a generator for the hybrid battery. The second motor powers the vehicle for hybrid and electric driving modes. It also charges the hybrid battery during regenerative braking. The Crosstrek Hybrid is capable of speeds up to 65 mph when in full electric mode and is a full second faster from 0 to 60 mph than the standard Crosstrek. The new powertrain not only yields quicker acceleration, but up to 90 MPGe with a total range of 480 miles. The high-capacity lithium-ion battery, mounted beneath the cargo area, enables the Hybrid to achieve an EV range of 17 miles, which covers a variety of trips. An electronically controlled brake system has been developed. Braking control has been optimized to distribute braking force between the regenerative brakes and mechanical brakes, thereby maximizing the amount of power regeneration to improve fuel efficiency and extended battery life. Like the Crosstrek, the 2019 Crosstrek Hybrid is built around the Subaru Global Platform that was designed to accommodate hybrid and electric powertrains. The standard Linerartronic CVT features X-MODE and Hill Descent Control for enhanced performance in low-friction and off-road conditions. The Crosstrek Hybrid’s 8.7-inches of ground clearance and 1,000 lb. towing capacity provide versatility in both off-road and city driving. The 60/40-split fold-down rear seats offer up to 43.1 cu.ft of cargo space, enough space for camping gear or luggage. The standard SI-DRIVE is a powertrain performance management system that allows the driver to tailor the vehicle’s throttle characteristics by choosing between “Intelligent” and “Sport” modes. Standard Active Torque Vectoring, first introduced on the WRX model line, applies light brake pressure to the inside front wheel while cornering for improved control and handling. Exclusive to the 2019 Crosstrek Hybrid is a striking new exterior color, Lagoon Blue Pearl, one of four available hues. The SUV is further distinguished by blue headlight projector rings and unique silver metallic finish on the front grille, lower front bumper and body cladding, and fog light accents. The low-profile roof rails and spoiler in black finish, along with unique 18-inch wheels in black with machine finish, accentuate this model’s sleek styling. A “Plug-In Hybrid” badge adorns the rear gate and fenders, and “Plug-In” text is imprinted in the charge port door. The Hybrid’s interior features exclusive new high-contrast Gray and Navy-Blue leather seats, door panels and armrests. The cabin is complemented with blue stitching and accent panels throughout. The fun-to-drive Crosstrek Hybrid comes with an array of standard features including the 8.0-inch STARLINK Multimedia Plus system with Apple CarPlay™ and Android™ Auto; Keyless Access with Push-Button Start; Automatic Climate Control; Tire Pressure Monitoring System with individual tire pressure display; power windows with auto-up/auto-down on both driver and passenger sides; power door locks and side mirrors; LED fog lights and dual rear USB ports. The standard All-Weather Package includes heated front seats, windshield wiper de-icer and heated exterior mirrors. The leather-wrapped steering wheel includes audio, Bluetooth® and SI-Drive control switches. For easy recognition while driving, the high-grade instrument panel includes a 4.2-inch color LCD as well as a power meter for real-time power output and regeneration. The high-grade multifunction display located above the center stack adds exclusive hybrid functions including driving and charging screens. With safety as a top priority, the 2019 Crosstrek Hybrid comes standard with a suite of driver-assist and safety features. EyeSight Driver Assist Technology includes Pre-Collision Braking and Throttle Management; Adaptive Cruise Control; Lane Departure and Sway Warning; and Lane Keep Assist. For the first time in a Subaru vehicle, a Driver Assist Indicator has been installed at the top of the combination meter to increase visibility of EyeSight status or other warnings. Standard Steering Responsive Headlights illuminate curves as the vehicle steers into them. Reverse Automatic Braking can apply the vehicle’s brakes if an obstacle is detected while reversing. LED High Beam Assist encourages the driver to maximize the use of high beams without worry of impairing oncoming traffic. Blind Spot Detection with Lane Change Assist and Cross Traffic Alert is also standard. Further, the Hybrid features a Pedestrian Alert System that provides an audible warning to pedestrians within the proximity of the vehicle when it is traveling below 20 mph. Like all 2019 Crosstrek models, the Hybrid comes standard with seven airbags including driver and front passenger frontal airbags, side curtain airbags, side pelvis/torso airbags and a driver’s knee airbag. An option package priced at $2,500 offers a power moonroof, heated steering wheel and STARLINK 8.0-inch Multimedia Navigation system with voice activated navigation powered by TomTom. Also included with the package is a Harman Kardon 8-speaker system with 432-watt equivalent amplifier. SUBARU STARLINK In-Vehicle Technology provides hands-free connectivity and entertainment through the vehicle’s multimedia or navigation system. All STARLINK Multimedia systems offer a high-resolution touchscreen; smartphone integration with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Aha™, and Pandora®; Bluetooth hands-free phone and audio streaming connectivity; AM/FM stereo; and Rear Vision Camera as standard. The 8.0-inch Multimedia Plus includes a single-disc CD player and voice activated controls for phone and Near Field Communication to the list of features. The top-of-the-line 8.0-inch Multimedia with Navigation adds navigation powered by TomTom, voice activated navigation and over-the-air updates. New features for SUBARU STARLINK Connected Services, exclusive to Crosstrek Hybrid, include Remote Climate Control and Remote Battery Charging Timer. The vehicle’s climate control can function without starting the engine, so it can warm up or cool down even when garaged. The Remote Battery Charging Timer allows a user to manage the vehicle charging schedule and monitor its status. The Hybrid comes with a 10-year complimentary subscription to SUBARU STARLINK Safety and Security Plus package, which includes Remote Climate Control and Remote Battery Charging Timer, SOS emergency assistance and automatic collision notification. It also features maintenance notifications, monthly vehicle health report and diagnostic alerts, stolen vehicle recovery service, vehicle security alarm notification, remote lock/unlock, remote horn and lights, and remote vehicle locator and parenting features including boundary, speed and curfew alerts. The STARLINK Concierge package is available and features in-vehicle assistance with restaurant and hotel reservations, purchasing tickets for sporting/theater events and scheduling service appointments. *Destination & Delivery is $975 and may vary in the following states: CT, HI, MA, ME, NH, NJ, NY, RI and VT. D&D is $1,125 for retailers in Alaska.
  15. Chevrolet has introduced mid-cycle refreshes for the bulk of their passenger car lineup. New faces are the big change of note for the 2019 Cruze, Malibu, and Spark. But there are other changes for these models which we will detail below. 2019 Malibu Out of the three, the 2019 Malibu gets the most significant updates. It begins with the introduction of the RS package that adds a black grille, black badge, dual-outlet exhaust and special 18-inch wheels. Those hoping for some changes with the suspension are out of luck since there are none. Models equipped with the 1.5L turbo swap the six-speed automatic for a CVT. All Malibus will get an 8-inch touchscreen with the new Chevrolet Infotainment 3 system. 2019 Cruze We first reported this back in December and it has now been confirmed. The manual transmission will no longer be available on any version of the Cruze. This means only automatics will be available - six-speed for gas and nine-speed for diesel. The Cruze Hatchback lineup gains a new LS variant to serve as the base. We're expecting the LS hatch to be somewhere in the $20,000 to $21,000 range for its base price. Other changes include the introduction of the Chevrolet Infotainment 3 system, and LT and Premier models getting automatic climate control and remote start as standard. 2019 Spark Last up is the 2019 Spark. It gets new styling for the rear and optional low-speed automatic emergency braking. No word on pricing, but we expect to find out when all of these models go on sale later this year. Source: Chevrolet Press Release is on Page 2 NEW RS TRIM LEADS RESTYLED 2019 CHEVROLET MALIBU LINEUP DETROIT — Updated styling across the lineup — led by the first-ever RS trim — introduces additional choices to the 2019 Chevrolet Malibu and improves its presence. “We see an exciting opportunity with the 2019 Malibu to give customers new, distinctive choices, exemplified by Malibu RS,” said Steve Majoros, Chevrolet marketing director for Cars and Crossovers. “It offers athletic design and amazing features at an attractive price point starting between Malibu LS and LT trims.” The first-ever Malibu RS offers a sporty, personalized appearance starting at around $25,000, driven by styling cues that include 18-inch machined wheels, black sport grille, black bowtie emblems, a rear spoiler and a dual-outlet exhaust. Inside, Malibu RS features a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shifter, black cloth seats and a standard 8-inch diagonal color touchscreen running the Chevrolet Infotainment 3 system. Offered on five 2019 models, the RS trim is a Chevrolet success story that gives customers distinctive choice, strong value and performance-driven design. The new, standard 8-inch diagonal touchscreen running Chevrolet Infotainment 3 system and new CVT transmission mated to the standard 1.5L Turbo engine further refine the 2019 Malibu line. The Premier trim retains its 2.0L Turbo paired to a nine-speed automatic. Performance-inspired design The Malibu’s front fascia, grilles and headlamps are all-new. The headlamps are integrated with the upper grille and the larger, bolder lower grille, giving the car a more powerful presence. High-performance LED lighting are integrated into the headlamps for Premier models, and there are new LED signature daytime running lamps for LT and Premier. There’s greater attention to detail in the grille and headlamps, with bold chrome accents reinforcing Malibu’s premium appearance. A new rear valance pushes the dual-exhaust outlets farther toward the corners, emphasizing the car’s width, while new taillamps deliver a more dramatic execution of Chevrolet’s signature dual-element design. The LT and Premier trims feature LED taillamps. “The Malibu’s fresh look refines and enhances the sculptural beauty of the Malibu,” said John Cafaro, executive director, Global Chevrolet Design. “It will also be an obvious member of the Chevrolet car family.” Additional 2019 updates across Malibu’s lineup include: A new, standard 8-inch diagonal color touchscreen radio running Chevrolet Infotainment 3 New 8-inch diagonal reconfigurable driver information center display on the Premier model Rear Vision Camera1 system is now standard on the Malibu L model The up-level Malibu Premier features standard heated outboard rear seats New available interior and exterior colors New wheel designs available in multiple sizes, including 16-, 17- and 18-inch The restyled Malibu joins the 2019 Cruze and Spark as part of Chevrolet’s freshened car portfolio. It goes on sale this fall. RESTYLED 2019 CHEVROLET CRUZE POSITIONED TO STRENGTHEN MARKET MOMENTUM DETROIT — Chevrolet today introduced the restyled 2019 Cruze with a more premium appearance that enhances its on-road presence and strengthens its value for customers. The updates for 2019 position Cruze to continue its success in the compact car segment. “Cruze is a cornerstone of Chevrolet’s car strategy, bringing new customers to the brand,” said Steve Majoros, Chevrolet marketing director for Cars and Crossovers. “In fact, 53 percent of Cruze customers in 2017 were new to Chevrolet. Cruze has been so successful at attracting new buyers to Chevy because its lineup offers something for every customer, from body style to fuel choice to trim and design.” Recent introductions of the Cruze Hatch and Diesel models helped push the car to a 0.6-percent retail market share gain in 2017 and helped Chevrolet secure its third consecutive year of higher overall retail market share. New design The 2019 Cruze’s front fascia and grilles are all-new. Revised grille designs reinforce Cruze’s premium appearance. In the Premier trim, Chevrolet’s signature dual-element taillamps now feature LED accent lighting, which adds to Cruze’s sculptural beauty. “Cruze’s refreshed styling gives Cruze a more upscale look while maintaining its Chevrolet design DNA,” said John Cafaro, executive director, Global Chevrolet Design. What’s new for 2019 Chevrolet is the most awarded, fastest-growing brand for the last four years overall* and as part of that, the first-ever Cruze Hatch LS continues Chevrolet’s commitment and momentum in offering a broad car portfolio with choices for every budget and need. Additional updates include: New Chevrolet Infotainment 3 running on a standard 7-inch diagonal color touchscreen radio Remote start and automatic climate control standard on LT and Premier models New wheel designs Black window moldings, bowtie emblems and 17-inch (and available 18-inch) machined wheels for Cruze’s RS package New available Umber interior color The 2019 Cruze goes on sale later this year, offered in sedan and hatchback models, with 1.4L turbo and available 1.6L turbo-diesel engines. It also features 4G LTE connectivity and a built-in Wi-Fi hotspot (with limited service trial), and one of the segment’s biggest rosters of available active safety features, including: Lane Change Alert with Side Blind Zone Alert Rear Cross-Traffic Alert Rear Park Assist Following Distance Indicator Forward Collision Alert Front pedestrian braking Lane Keep Assist with Lane Departure Warning Low Speed Forward Automatic Braking CHEVROLET INTRODUCES RESTYLED 2019 SPARK DETROIT — An updated face and new available active safety technology for the 2019 Spark add attitude and purpose to Chevrolet’s feisty, segment sales-leading mini-car. “Customers can easily personalize Spark, which is a main reason why it leads its segment in sales, attracting both young buyers and women to the brand,” said Steve Majoros, Chevrolet marketing director for Cars and Crossovers. “Spark is an excellent value for customers seeking an affordable car that offers great safety technology and connectivity.” Spark’s fresh front-end styling takes its cues from the Chevrolet line, while new, available Low Speed Forward Automatic Braking1 can help drivers prevent or reduce the severity of low-speed front-end collisions by applying the brakes or enhancing the driver’s braking. The new styling boosts Spark’s premium appearance with a rich use of chrome in the grille. Available projector-style headlamps further enhance Spark’s chic styling. The available LED daytime running lamps are moved lower, giving Spark a more powerful presence and a family resemblance to the rest of the Chevrolet car lineup. At the rear, dual-element taillamps further the signature brand cue. Spark continues its tradition of offering customer personalization through bright and distinctive paint colors. The 2019 Spark is offered in LS, LT, 2LT and ACTIV trims, with the ACTIV featuring crossover-inspired design cues and a ride height raised by 10mm. All trims feature standard air conditioning, 10 standard airbags2 and a rear-vision camera system. New, segment-exclusive Low Speed Forward Automatic Braking joins the available Driver Confidence Package, complementing the package’s additional active safety features, Forward Collision Alert1 and Lane Departure Warning. 1 When it comes to connectivity, Spark delivers a standard Chevrolet infotainment system featuring phone integration compatibility with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a limited trial of OnStar and connectivity access at no additional cost, plus access to the MyChevrolet mobile app. Spark is powered by a 1.4L DOHC engine offered with a manual transmission or an available continuously variable transmission (CVT). The refreshed Spark joins the 2019 Malibu and Cruze as part of Chevrolet’s updated car portfolio, which offers new styling, new technologies and more choices and value. It goes on sale later this year.
  16. Infiniti describes the 2019 QX50 crossover as their 'most compelling' model to date. Quite the expectation for their new compact crossover that will be debuting in a few days time at the LA Auto Show. But if you look past the design that appears to be inspired by the QX60 crossover (and makes it look somewhat boring), Infiniti may have a good reason for saying this. The QX50 will be the first Infiniti model to debut their new VC-Turbo four-cylinder. This engine is unique as it can adjust compression from 8:1 to 14:1 by modifying the length of the piston stroke. The benefits to this are improved efficiency and diesel-like torque. Figures for the engine stand at 268 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque. This is paired with a CVT and the choice of front or all-wheel drive. Performance figures for the QX50: 0-60 MPH: 6.7 seconds (FWD), 6.3 seconds (AWD) Top Speed: 143 MPH Fuel Economy: 27 MPG Combined (FWD), 26 MPG Combined (AWD) The QX50 will also come with Infiniti's ProPILOT assist system that can control steering, acceleration, and braking on single-lane highways at the press of a button. This isn't a fully autonomous system however, you'll still need to pay attention to the road and intervene when needed. We'll have more details when the QX50 rolls on to the LA show floor in the next few days. Source: Infiniti Press Release is on Page 2 INFINITI QX50: A luxury crossover with world-first technologies and an all-new platform VC-Turbo: The world's first production-ready variable compression ratio engine All-new platform provides unrivaled refinement, rigidity and interior space ProPILOT Assist: Intuitive technologies support the driver Distinctive proportions, with INFINITI's signature Powerful Elegance design NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The new 2019 QX50 is the most compelling INFINITI to date. Based on an entirely new platform, the new QX50 is a mid-size crossover with world-first technologies, standout design and unrivaled interior space. "The 2019 QX50 is the most important vehicle we have ever launched, and it embodies everything the brand stands for: beautiful design, advanced technology and empowering performance. As a luxury, mid-size crossover, it's the right vehicle at the right time in one of the world's fastest growing segments." Christian Meunier, INFINITI Global Division Vice President VC-Turbo – the world's first production-ready variable compression ratio engine The VC-Turbo engine is the world's first production-ready variable compression ratio engine, transforming on demand. A breakthrough in combustion engine design, the 2.0-liter VC-Turbo engine adjusts its compression ratio to optimize power and efficiency. It combines the power of a 2.0-liter turbocharged gasoline engine with the torque and efficiency of a four-cylinder diesel engine. A compelling alternative to diesel, it challenges the notion that only hybrid and diesel powertrains can deliver high torque and efficiency. "Variable compression ratio technology represents a breakthrough in powertrain development. The QX50, powered by our VC-Turbo, is the first production vehicle ever to give drivers an engine that transforms on demand, setting a new benchmark for powertrain capability and refinement. Randy Parker, Vice President, INFINITI Americas A multi-link system continuously raises or lowers the pistons' reach to transform the compression ratio. High compression ratios aid efficiency, while low ratios enable greater power and torque. The VC-Turbo offers any compression ratio between 8:1 (for performance) and 14:1 (for efficiency), maximizing driver control. The engine delivers 268 hp (200 kW) and 280 lb ft (380 Nm), an expected best-in-class combination of four-cylinder power and torque. The 2019 QX50 is expected to deliver fuel economy of 27 mpg (U.S. combined, front-wheel drive; 26 mpg all-wheel drive). Front-wheel-drive models offer a 35% improvement in fuel efficiency over the previous V6 gasoline QX50; all-wheel-drive models offer a 30% improvement. The engine is paired with a continuously variable transmission (CVT), for seamless power delivery. Its infinite number of ratios perfectly matches the engine's ability to transform. All-new platform with predictive, predictable ride and handling The 2019 QX50 is built on an all-new platform, featuring a front-engine, front-wheel-drive-based layout. Engineered with flexibility of application in mind, the new platform sets new standards for refinement, rigidity and interior space in the compact luxury crossover segment. "The crossover market is the number one premium segment globally. The new QX50 is INFINITI's core model and offers premium buyers everything they could want from a vehicle of this type, thanks in part to the development of an all-new platform that is an ideal combination of roominess and packaging efficiency." François Bancon, Vice President, Product and Programs The platform's layout allows for higher levels of packaging efficiency than before, resulting in the new QX50's ideal interior proportions for passengers and cargo. The 2019 QX50 represents the first automotive use of SHF (Super High Formability) 980 MPa high-tensile steel, further strengthening the all-new platform. The high-tensile material can be molded into unprecedented shapes, saving weight and representing a torsional rigidity improvement of 23% over the current QX50. New ProPILOT Assist technologies support single-lane highway driving INFINITI's customers have stated their desire to remain a key element in the driving equation, so the brand's vision for driver-assistance technologies is a step removed from the notion of fully autonomous "driverless" motoring embraced by some carmakers. "INFINITI's ProPILOT Assist technologies offer support when needed and add to the enjoyment and confidence of the driver. Our intention is to empower the driver and enhance feelings of pleasure behind the wheel, not to remove the driver from the equation. The brand new QX50 will set a new benchmark in the biggest premium segment." François Bancon, Vice President, Product and Programs In the 2019 QX50, ProPILOT Assist technologies help the driver control acceleration, braking and steering during single-lane highway driving, placing them in total control. ProPILOT Assist is designed to add to driving enjoyment and confidence, and is available at the push of a button. Powerful exterior design, handcrafted interior Remaining true to the design of the QX50 Concept and QX Sport Inspiration, the QX50's aerodynamic exterior reinterprets INFINITI's distinctive Powerful Elegance design language and signature design cues for the mid-size crossover segment. It combines a confident stance with intelligent packaging, while deep character lines highlight the influence of human artistry in the design process. The new QX50 stands out on the road. Its elevated driver position maximizes visibility, for a clear view while driving and parking. Aerodynamic efficiency is key to the new QX50's design – the drag coefficient is reduced significantly compared to the previous QX50. Its hood, bumpers, A-pillars, tailgate and enclosed underbody are all specially designed to encourage airflow over, around and under the vehicle, with minimal turbulence. The unrivaled interior space, artistic application of high quality materials, and advanced craftsmanship make the cabin as welcoming and comfortable as it is flexible. Driver-centric, yet passenger-minded, the 2019 QX50 offers a package of technologies to enhance the driving experience. Its asymmetric layout and calm, connected ambience is designed to meet different needs of the driver and passengers. The cabin boasts extraordinary space, with a sliding rear bench enhancing cabin and cargo flexibility and creating rear legroom that is expected to be best in class. The trunk's volume expands from 31.6 cu ft (895 liters SAE) to 37 cu ft (1,048 liters SAE) as the rear bench slides fore and aft, growing to 60 cu ft (1,699 liters SAE) with the rear seats folded. With all seats in place, the QX50 accommodates three golf bags, or a stroller stored lengthways, with space for additional cargo. Under-floor storage areas allow owners to stow other items out of sight. Technical specifications Body and chassis Five-door, five-seater crossover, with all-steel unitary construction bodyshell. Four-cylinder variable compression ratio turbocharged engine driving the front or all wheels via a continuously variable transmission. Engine 2.0-liter VC-Turbo gasoline Type Turbocharged four-cylinder in-line with variable compression ratio Displacement (cc) 1,997 (8:1 CR) ~ 1,970 (14:1) Bore and stroke 84.0 x 90.1 mm (8:1 CR) ~ 84.0 x 88.9 mm (14:1 CR) Compression ratio 8:1 ~ 14:1 (variable) Max power 268 hp (200 kW) @ 5,600 rpm Max torque 280 lb ft (380 Nm) @ 4,400 rpm Valves 16 Fuel system Direct injection and multi-port (variable) Transmission XTRONIC continuously variable transmission with manual shift mode Performance 0-to-60 mph 6.3 secs (AWD) / 6.7 secs (FWD) Top speed (mph) 143 (230 kph) Dimensions (in / mm) Overall length 184.8 / 4,693 Overall height 66.1 / 1,679 Overall width* 74.9 / 1,903 Wheelbase 110.2 / 2,800 Ground clearance 8.6 / 218 *excluding door mirrors Fuel economy (US mpg) FWD, combined 27 AWD, combined 26 NOVEMBER 2017 # # # View full article
  17. BMW never offered a convertible version of the 8-Series during the nineties, but the automaker is looking to rectify that with the new model. Later this month, BMW will be rolling out the 2019 8-Series convertible at the L.A. Auto Show. Until then, BMW has decided to spill the beans on it. The 8-Series convertible sports a soft-top that can be raised or lowered in only 15 seconds at speeds of up to 30 mph. A standard wind deflector snaps in behind the rear seats to help reduce the wind in your hair. For those who are crazy enough to drop the top in cold weather, optional neck warmers that are integrated into front headrests will keep you toasty. At launch, BMW will only offer the turbocharged 4.4L V8 producing 523 horsepower and 553 pound-feet of torque for the U.S. This is teamed with an eight-speed automatic and xDrive all-wheel drive. Compared to the coupe, the 8-Series convertible is 0.2 seconds slower to 60 mph (3.8 vs. 3.6 seconds). Blame the extra 258 pounds that the convertible has to lug around. Still, it will hit a top speed of 155 mph - same as the coupe. Pricing for the 2019 BMW 8-Series convertible begins at $122,395 (includes a $995 destination fee). It arrives at dealers in March. Gallery: 2019 BMW 8-Series Convertible Source: BMW The First-Ever 2019 BMW 8 Series Convertible. BMW M850i xDrive launch model with 523 hp and 553 lb-ft torque. 0-60 mph in 3.8 seconds and a limited top speed of 155 mph. Market launch March 2019 M850i xDrive Convertible MSRP $121,400 plus $995 Destination. Woodcliff Lake, NJ – November 1, 2018 …Today, BMW introduced the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible, which joins the new BMW 8 Series Coupe in blending ultra-sporting driving dynamics with an emotional and elegant design. The soft-top, four-seat BMW M850i xDrive Convertible combines immense power and torque delivery from its updated 4.4L 8-cylinder turbocharged engine with tenacious grip and peerless poise from the advanced chassis, luxurious comfort and state-of-the-art innovations in technology, driver assistance and connectivity. The result, is a vehicle that delivers an impeccable four-season driving experience, with the charisma of a low-slung, aggressively styled open top sports convertible, inviting the warming rays of the sun and the wind flowing past the cockpit to be your constant driving companions. Exterior design: new design language gives sporting appeal a new face. The exterior design of the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible exudes a very modern form of sporting appeal, beautifully blended, with an air of exclusiveness and sensual allure. Its unique character is the result of BMW’s new styling language focusing on modernity and emotional engagement. The car’s already low-slung and elongated silhouette is especially enhanced when the fabric-top is lowered. When raised, the compact fabric roof pulls taught over the interior, reducing wind noise and creating a stepped look, accentuating the deck-like rear visual of the new BMW 8 Series Convertible. Classic insulated fabric soft top and rollover protection system The fully-electric soft-top design incorporates multiple layers of fabric materials to not only insulate the occupants of the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible from outside noise and elements but also helps reduce weight from the very top of the vehicle, thus lowering the center of gravity and improving handling and performance. When lowered, the fabric top is stowed under a sophisticated cover with a surface finish and stitching coordinated with those of the instrument panel and interior door and side panel trim. The subtle “double-bubble” contour of the cover behind the two rear seats mimics the design incorporated in the BMW 8 Series Convertible’s roofline. The roof can be raised or lowered in 15 seconds at speeds up to 30 mph with the touch of the top control button located on the center console. A standard wind deflector can be positioned behind the front seats to further enhance the already serene passenger space. When not in use the wind deflector may be folded up and stored in the trunk. Optional neck warmers are available to extend the top down driving experience into cooler temperatures. Air outlets, integrated into front seat head restraints provide a pleasant warming effect. Air flow can be adjusted over three speed settings either manually, via the button on the center console or automatically, which adjusts air flow depending on vehicle speed. The BMW 8 Series Convertible features a standard automatically activated rollover protection system. The system activates the moment that data analysed by the central safety electronics indicate a risk of a roll-over. Two high-strength aluminum rollover bars, fitted behind the rear headrests, are extended by a pyrotechnic charge in a fraction of a second to form a survival space for the vehicle occupants in conjunction with the extremely rigid a-pillar windshield surround. Sculptured design with signature new headlights. The luxury-sport convertible’s promise of performance is visualized in dramatic effect by the prominent, jutting design of the front of the vehicle, with large air intakes creating an imposing appearance on the BMW M850i xDrive Convertible. The BMW kidney grill showcases its increased proportions and features a hexagonal outline that widens towards the bottom and a single-piece surround that encompasses its various elements. The first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible features standard Icon Adaptive LED Headlights with LaserLight technology that are the slimmest headlights of any BMW model to date. Both light tubes are used to generate the daytime driving lights as well as the low and high beam, thereby creating the signature brand look at all times. The rear end is composed of sculptured, emotive surfaces that emphasize the car’s width and low center of gravity. The slender all-LED rear light clusters extend deep into the flanks and add to the effect. The taillights illuminate uniformly in a distinctive ‘L’ shape. Twin, trapezoidal exhaust tailpipes are positioned either side of the rear lower section. Precise details optimize aerodynamics and weight. An almost fully covered underbody, active air flap control with adjustable kidney grille slats and Air Curtains including Air Breathers help to reduce the aerodynamic drag of the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible. Narrow exterior mirror bases, mounted directly on the side window weather strips help smooth the airflow. The optional M Carbon Exterior Package, consisting of air intake bars, exterior mirror caps, a and a rear diffuser insert, all made from CFRP, may be fitted to further enhance the already aggressive aura of the BMW M850i xDrive Convertible. Driver-focused interior The interior has been designed to help the driver focus on the road ahead and enjoy the experience of driving. The car’s wide center console rises up towards the instrument panel at the front, separating the driver and front passenger areas. This center space encompasses the audio control unit and its function buttons, the air conditioning control panel and air vents as well as the freestanding and frameless Control Display, all arranged above each other in a clear, horizontally partitioned structure. clear arrangement of the controls helps the driver to focus on what’s happening ahead. Apart from the gear selector and the iDrive Controller, the center console also accommodates the Driving Experience Control switch and the engine start/stop button, all arranged within a newly designed function cluster with active haptic feedback. The control unit for the light functions is new and now consists of buttons positioned at the bottom of the instrument panel between the steering wheel and the driver’s door. A leather M Sport steering wheel with multifunction buttons and shift paddles for manual gear selection is standard. Merino Individual Leather upholstery and folding rear seats as standard. The newly developed sports seats offer high levels of long-distance comfort and excellent lateral support. The headrests are integrated into the backrests and can be adjusted for both height and fore/aft position. A semi-electric folding function has been included for the front seat backrests, which is activated by using a high-quality leather strap located on each seatback to facilitate convenient entry and exit for the rear passengers. The sports seats are upholstered in standard premium Merino Individual leather with extended leather appointments. Decorative stitching in a contrasting color accentuates both the sporting contours and the rear seats’ styling as individual seats. There are large door pockets, a roomy glove compartment, two cup-holders under the center console’s trim finisher and a large storage compartment under the armrest’s longitudinally divided covers for stowing travel accessories, beverages and other items. The rear backrest in the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible has a 50:50 split design. The backrest sections can be folded down either individually or together to further increase cargo capacity. The folding mechanism is released by means of levers inside the cargo compartment. Automatic trunk lid operation is a standard feature on the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible, while the Comfort Access option permits hands-free opening and closing of the trunk lid. BMW M Performance model with exclusive features. The standard specification for the new BMW M850i xDrive Convertible contains exclusive design features and options to enhance the driving experience. In addition to multifunction seats and the M leather steering wheel, there are M pedals, M driver’s footrest and special floor mats to imbue the cabin with a distinctly sporty flair. The illuminated door sills and the display in the instrument cluster bear the BMW M Performance Automobile model badge or the M logo respectively. Premium options for enhanced luxury. The luxurious side of the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible’s character is shown with the help of a wide array of distinctive optional extras. Newly designed climate seats for driver and front passenger are available as an upgrade to the standard heated seats. For the first time, the cooled air is drawn in from the interior then guided along the body to the seats’ built-in fans for particularly effective temperature control of the seat cushions and backrests. The standard ambient light feature emphasizes the forward-pointing lines inside the car to striking effect. Indirect illumination of the contour lines running along the center console and the door shoulders using precisely positioned LED optical fibers creates an exclusive mood. The color of the light can be changed via the iDrive menu. In addition to this, the Dynamic interior light function emits pulsating light signals in specific situations. These signals appear on the inner panelling of an open door when the engine is running and on the instrument panel in response to an incoming phone call. The standard Harman Kardon audio system comprises twelve speakers and a digital amplifier, while the pinnacle of the audio line-up is without doubt the optional Bowers & Wilkins Diamond Surround Sound System. The unrivalled Diamond loudspeaker technology, fully active 12-channel amplifier with an output of 1,375 watts, dynamic equalizing and 12 partly illuminated speakers combine together to deliver a beautifully precise and multifaceted acoustic experience whose pristine quality can be enjoyed in equal measure from all seats in the new BMW 8 Series Convertible. The optional glass applications for selected controls add both visual and tactile highlights to the interior design. This exclusive design feature adorns the gear selector, the iDrive Controller, the start/stop button and the volume control for the audio system. An illuminated ‘8’ can be seen through the glass surface of the gear selector. Remote Start is available as part of the optional Comfort Seating Package, which also includes front ventilated seats and heated front seat armrests and steering wheel. The BMW M Performance model that will be available from launch provides a particularly impressive demonstration of the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible’s sporting essence. Under the hood lies a 523 hp BMW TwinPower Turbo V8 engine that has undergone extensive upgrades and refinement. It serves up an intense form of the unmistakable power delivery and acoustics of eight-cylinder units and is every bit as captivating and emotionally thrilling as the car it powers. Power is transferred to the wheels via the latest-generation eight-speed Steptronic Sport transmission that boasts a wider gear ratio spread, even sportier gear shifts and can be operated by means of shift paddles on the steering wheel. Completing the all-round package for an engaging driving experience is the BMW xDrive intelligent all-wheel-drive system, which is fitted in a newly improved version that has been tuned for this specific model. The rear-wheel bias of the xDrive system and the rear differential lock fitted as standard on the first-ever BMW M850i xDrive Convertible ensure maximum agility and precision when the car’s sporting capabilities are being put to the test. Updated V8 engine with incredible power and acoustics. The launch of the first-ever BMW M850i xDrive Convertible also marks the premiere of a new BMW TwinPower Turbo V8 engine. The latest generation of the 4.4-liter eight-cylinder engine has been radically revised with numerous detailed improvements. Two twin-scroll turbochargers with charge air cooling located within the V-shaped space between the cylinder banks, High Precision Injection, VALVETRONIC fully variable valve control and Double-VANOS variable camshaft timing all form part of the M Performance TwinPower Turbo technology, whose extensive overhaul has given a substantial boost to maximum power, torque and efficiency. The new V8 engine serves up an enthralling soundtrack, which is enhanced by the standard flap-controlled sports exhaust system. It boasts a wonderfully versatile character that can also adapt itself to effortlessly relaxed cruising. The Driving Experience Control switch can be used to activate both extremely sporty and distinctly comfort-oriented powertrain settings. In the SPORT and SPORT+ modes, accelerator response as well as the V8 engine’s power delivery and acoustics – which take on a particularly distinctive note in the SPORT+ setting – are all configured for an exhilarating driving experience. A new aluminium alloy has been used to increase the strength of the engine block. The wire-arc sprayed iron coating for the cylinder walls serves to reduce frictional losses. Reinforced, Grafal-coated pistons and optimized piston rings are designed to endure the stress on the crank drive that comes with the extra output and torque. To enhance engine smoothness, torsional vibration is minimized with the help of a viscous damper on the crankshaft. Optimized power delivery, efficiency and emissions performance. To achieve rapid combustion, the intake ports have been optimized for higher flow. The enlarged twin-scroll turbochargers and the variable valve and camshaft timing enable throttle losses during the gas-exchange cycle to be eliminated as far as possible and allow effective use of exhaust gas recirculation for lowering fuel consumption. Electrically-controlled wastegate actuators are used to ensure an extremely quick build-up of boost pressure, while electric blow-off valves are integrated into the compressor housing to enhance the turbocharger sound during boost pressure release while at the same time as keeping emissions as low as possible in all operating conditions. The air intake manifold has been redesigned and a connection between the air ducts for both cylinder banks ensures even pulsation during gas exchange, resulting in higher torque at lower engine speeds. The multi-hole fuel injectors are positioned centrally between the valves and spray fuel at a maximum pressure that has been increased from 2,900 psi to 5,076 psi. This optimizes both the metering of the fuel and the engine’s emissions performance. The BMW TwinPower Turbo V8 engine also takes advantage of a new ignition system and engine management. Thermal shielding and the cooling circulation system have both undergone extensive modification. An upstream coolant radiator helps meet the high demands on the engine’s temperature management during extremely spirited driving. The new BMW TwinPower Turbo V8 engine now generates 523 hp between 5,500 and 6,000 rpm and 553 lb-ft of torque from 1,800 to 4,600 rpm. Eight-speed Steptronic Sport transmission with wider ratios and sportier shifts. The latest improved version of the Sport automatic transmission features a weight-reducing design, a newly developed controller and a wider gear ratio spread. As a result, it is possible to achieve efficiency gains with reduced engine speeds, particularly when driving in higher gears. At the same time, the eight-speed Steptronic Sport transmission now shifts gear more sharply courtesy of optimized hydraulics control. A new generation of torsion dampers that reduce rotational forces within the powertrain help improve both driving comfort and shift smoothness. Integral twin-damper systems for isolating vibrations reduce the degree of slip at the torque converter lock-up clutch. Shift paddles on the steering wheel are included as standard for manual gear selection, while a Launch Control function allows for accelerating from a standing start with maximum available traction. Intelligent networking increases performance and efficiency. The eight-speed Steptronic Sport transmission’s controller is able to adapt the shift parameters to the current driving situation by means of intelligent networking with the standard Navigation system, enabling it to take the planned route into account. Navigation data is used to downshift early, for example, when approaching an intersection in order to use engine braking to slow the car down. Likewise, the intelligent controller is able to avoid unnecessary gear shifts between two corners that follow in quick succession, making it possible to drive through at a quicker pace. Intelligent networking increases the efficiency of the drive system in the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible by allowing Auto Start Stop operation to adapt to suit the specific situation based on data supplied by the navigation system as well as by the cameras and radar sensors of the optional driver assistance systems. In this way, inefficient engine shutdown – for example when stopping briefly at junctions with yield signs – can be prevented. The movement of vehicles ahead is registered in order to determine the ideal moment for stopping and starting the engine. Intelligent networking also boosts the efficiency-enhancing effect of the coasting function. When travelling at speeds between 9 – 99 mph, it ensures that the powertrain is decoupled as soon as the driver lifts off the accelerator. The vehicle can then simply coast along at idling speed and with minimized fuel consumption. This function is available with the Driving Experience Control switch set to ECO Pro mode. The switch to this “sail” mode only takes place in driving situations in which it appears worthwhile and which doesn’t compromise comfort or performance. If the accelerator is released very suddenly for instance, the powertrain stays connected in order to use the engine’s drag torque to decelerate. BMW xDrive with electronically controlled differential lock. The BMW xDrive intelligent all-wheel-drive system has been improved for more efficient operation. With its rapid, precise and fully variable distribution of drive torque between the front and rear wheels, it maximizes traction and handling stability not just when driving in adverse road conditions, but in performance driving situations as well. Power is split in accordance with demands at all times using an electronically controlled multi-plate clutch that is networked with the powertrain and chassis systems. This results in extremely quick and exact response to any change in the driving situation. To increase the system’s efficiency, all of the drive torque is directed to the rear wheels in situations when all-wheel drive is not needed. The xDrive system’s rear-biased set-up guarantees a driving experience for which BMW sports cars are renowned. The fact that the all-wheel-drive system has been specifically designed for performance handling is especially noticeable in the SPORT and SPORT+ modes selected via the Driving Experience Control switch. Governed by the Driving Stability Control (DSC) system, the locking function for the standard electronically controlled rear differential improves traction and power transmission when driving on road surfaces offering differing levels of grip for the left and right rear wheels by preventing a wheel from spinning when traction is limited. The locking effect produced by the electric motor allows the drive torque to be redirected from the faster turning to the slower turning tire. This combines with the intelligent all-wheel drive and the standard Integral Active Steering to give the car all the right tools for excellent handling and remarkably agility in all driving situations. Suspension technology sharpened with racing know-how. The suspension technology developed for the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible consists of a double-wishbone front axle and a five-link rear axle as well as electromechanical steering and an exceptionally powerful braking system developed exclusively for this new model. The racing know-how of BMW M GmbH was used for detailed modifications and enhancements to the overall suspension set-up. Torsion struts on the front axle and a load-bearing strut incorporated on the rear axle optimize stiffness and the connection of suspension components to the chassis. Independent rubber bearings – which increase camber stiffness – and additional damping plates at the rear axle further enhance the suspension’s baseline set-up. Special wheel hubs and wishbones allow camber values on both axles to be raised as far as possible. This significantly increases the car’s ability to put down power through high-speed corners. The design principle of the double-wishbone front suspension makes it possible to separate steering and damper functions. As a result, high lateral acceleration forces are possible without compromising ride comfort. The car’s steering remains largely unaffected by disruptive forces caused by irregularities in the road surface. Thanks to bi-elastic bushings, the five-link rear axle guarantees precise wheel guidance and the highest degree of directional stability. In addition, effective isolation of the powertrain and suspension improves interior acoustic comfort. Adaptive M suspension and Integral Active Steering standard. Standard on the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible is Adaptive M suspension with electronically controlled dampers. Both compression and rebound are adjusted continuously and independently. This facilitates finely tuned spring and damping responses, providing the driver with only relevant information about the road surface. The extremely stiff suspension springs reduce roll tendency and allow the dampers to stabilize the wheels as much as possible, avoiding traction losses caused by bumps and ruts in the road surface. The electronically controlled dampers respond adaptively to road surface conditions and driving style in order to eliminate undesired vehicle movement. Minor road damage is comfortably filtered out and narrow bumps do not induce unwanted pitching movements. Damping characteristics can be adjusted via the Driving Experience Control switch. SPORT and SPORT+ modes activate optimal responses for maximum handling. This is noticeably different from the comfort-oriented damper setting in ECO Pro and COMFORT modes. The standard Integral Active Steering also reduces the car’s turning circle when maneuvering, increases agility at moderate speeds and optimizes stability when changing lanes and cornering at high speeds. The system combines the electromechanical steering of the front wheels (including Servotronic function for speed-sensitive power assistance) and the variable steering ratio in the rear axle steering. In order to achieve maximum precision during performance cornering, the steering of the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible becomes more direct with speed. As a result, on winding roads the car feels particularly agile and easy to control. The variable steering ratio also provides additional comfort; allowing the driver to maneuver at low speeds with minimal steering wheel movement and without having to change their grip on the wheel. By contrast, at high speeds, the same steering wheel movement results in decreased steering response, optimizing turn-in precision. Active steering of the rear wheels by up to 2.5 degrees – thanks to Integral Active Steering – considerably enhances the cornering ability of the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible. The rear wheels are steered in the opposite direction to the front wheels at speeds up to 45 mph. At higher speeds, the steering angle of the rear wheels matches that of the front wheels, ensuring the car adopts the course determined by the driver quicker and more accurately. At the car’s traction limit, it feeds in a stabilizing steering input to complement the triggered braking intervention. Activating SPORT or SPORT+ model via the Driving Experience Control switch gives a more direct steering response. At the same time, the maximum speed at which the rear wheels are steered in the opposite direction to the front wheels is increased to 55 mph. Active roll stabilization Active roll stabilization is optionally available for the first-ever BMW M850i xDrive Convertible and further enhances the car’s sporty handling characteristics. Electric swivel motors on the front and rear anti-roll bars ensure fast and precise compensation for lateral forces during dynamic driving maneuvers. The system is controlled through a constant analysis of vehicle speed, lateral and longitudinal acceleration, steering wheel position, wheel and body acceleration and variation in height levels. In BMW M Performance models, active roll stabilization has an exceptionally sporty set-up and responds adaptively to changing requirements. It optimizes agility and directional stability on turn-in and helps line the car up as neatly as possible for improved acceleration out of corners. The reduced body movement also means that fast evasive maneuvers can be executed with great assurance. At the opposite end of the spectrum, the system increases comfort when driving straight ahead by decoupling the permanent anti-roll bar connection between the wheels of an axle. By stabilizing the wheel that requires it, the system is extremely effective in counteracting disruptive forces resulting from road surface imperfections on one side of the car. M Sport braking systems, light-alloy wheels with high-performance tires. Powerful braking characteristics, high thermal stability, fast response and excellent feel characterize the braking system developed for the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible. Four-piston, fixed-calliper brakes at the front are complemented by single-piston, floating-calliper brakes at the rear. The electronic parking brake – operated by means of a button located on the center console – is integrated into the rear brake callipers. The integration of the braking system and DSC stability control guarantees precise braking response, braking control and brake boosting. Inner-vented brake discs and model-specific brake pads are featured both at the front and rear. Directional cooling air ducts help to reduce temperatures. The friction rings of each brake disc are riveted to an aluminum drum. Together with the use of aluminum brake callipers, this BMW-patented construction concept significantly reduces unsprung weight. The M Sport braking system is recognizable by blue callipers featuring the M logo. The suspension technology featured in the new BMW M850i xDrive Convertible is oriented towards maximum performance and rounded off by 20-inch M light-alloy wheels. The cast aluminum wheels are standard and come in the exclusive color Frozen Cerium Grey metallic with a high-gloss polished finish on the face. They are fitted with 245/35R20 tires at the front and 275/30R20 tires at the rear. The high-performance tires were developed by the manufacturer specifically for the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible. Ideal overall package for maximum performance. The suspension system for the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible has been tuned – down to the finest detail – to the powertrain technology. Moreover, all the vehicle dynamics-related systems have been linked up with one another via the high-speed data transfer system called FlexRay to create an overall package geared towards maximum performance. Constant measurement of the driving situation data by sensors forms the basis for coordinated system responses. Within a split second, the control unit integrated into the braking system and DSC is able to adapt the powertrain and suspension functions to changing situations, such as varying road surface conditions, sudden braking, spontaneous steering maneuvers and extreme acceleration. Here, the steering, four-wheel-drive system, electronically controlled differential lock and active roll stabilization are all employed to assist the stabilizing effect of brake intervention on individual wheels and adjustment of drive torque. A hierarchical control structure guarantees optimal control of the relevant actuators. For example, to optimize directional stability when braking heavily on road surfaces with varying grip levels under the right and left-hand wheels, a steering impulse can be transmitted to inform the driver of the necessity to adjust their line. With carefully judged steering inputs on the rear axle, it is possible to counteract a tendency to oversteer or understeer. Adjustments by the active roll stabilization system will assist in enhancing stability and agility. Precisely controlled anti-roll bar swivel motors can optimize traction in fast bends. Centrally evaluated data on the driving situation optimizes the efficiency of the BMW xDrive system’s responses. Optimized weight thanks to intelligent material use. BMW EfficientLightweight includes the use of an intelligent material mix to optimize both weight and body/suspension rigidity. In addition to the supporting structures at the front and rear of the car, other components such as the doors, hood and the front firewall of the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible are made of aluminum. The bracing tube for the passenger compartment is made from magnesium and the center tunnel is made of CFRP. The front axle is made almost completely from aluminum. The rear axle features a combination of lightweight steel construction with wheel carriers and forged control arms in aluminum. BMW Personal Co-Pilot suite of Driver Assist systems A particularly wide variety of standard and optionally available driver assistance systems marks the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible as an extremely advanced model within its segment. The systems really come into their own when driving longer distances by relieving the strain on the driver in monotonous situations, such as traffic jams or slow-moving traffic. They enhance comfort and safety both in urban traffic and on longer trips by providing targeted assistance in complex traffic situations. The driver assistance systems process camera images as well as the data gathered by ultrasonic and radar sensors to monitor the vehicle’s surroundings, to warn of potential hazards and to minimise the risk of an accident with corrective braking or steering inputs. These integral features of the BMW Personal Co?Pilot represent the latest advances on the road to automated driving. The BMW 8 Series Convertible is equipped with standard Collision and Pedestrian Warning with City Braking function, the latest version of which alerts the driver when a cyclist is detected. Depending on the situation, the system can bring the vehicle to a halt to either avoid a collision or minimize its consequences. The optional Driving Assistant Professional offers comprehensive assistance for comfortable and safe driving. This package includes Active Cruise Control with Stop & Go function. It can be used at speeds up to 130 mph and maintains the desired speed while taking not only the traffic situation into account, but also the selected distance to vehicles in front. If required, the system is able to brake the car to a stop then pull away again automatically after being stationary for up to 30 seconds, meaning greater comfort in stop-start traffic. Camera images and data from a front radar system are used for distance control. In addition to Active Cruise Control with Stop & Go function, this complete package also includes the Steering and Lane Control assistant. To allow convenient activation of the two systems, the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible is fitted with a special button on the standard multifunction steering wheel for switching on the Active Cruise Control and Steering and lane control assistant simultaneously. A mode button can be pressed to switch to using Active Cruise Control on its own. Another component of the Driving Assistant Professional is the Lane Keeping Assistant with Active Side Collision Protection. This is made up of the Lane Departure Warning and Active Blind Spot Detection systems, which are active from 44 – 130 mph and 12 mph up to top speed respectively and help the driver guide the vehicle back onto the correct path with an active turn of the steering. Besides emitting visual warning signals and causing the steering wheel to vibrate, active side collision protection also uses active steering intervention to help avoid a collision. The Driving Assistant Professional also includes the evasion aid, which now also reacts to pedestrians. The Crossing Traffic Warning – which reduces the danger of a collision when maneuvering forwards towards roads that are obstructed from the driver’s view – now also includes brake intervention. The latest-generation Head-Up Display. The BMW Head-Up Display, which comes as standard in the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible and projects relevant driving information onto the windscreen in the form of graphics, is another factor in the intensely focused driving experience. The latest generation of the system features a larger projection area, optimized graphics and additional content. The BMW Head-Up Display projects information directly into the driver’s field of vision where it can be assimilated without any need for them to divert their eyes from the road. This includes details of vehicle speed, speed limits and overtaking restrictions, Check Control messages, status indicators and warnings from the assistance systems, detailed route guidance and turn instructions, as well as telephone and entertainment lists. When driving with the Driving Experience Control switch in SPORT or SPORT+ mode, the Head-Up Display also indicates engine speed. Plus, there is a digital Optimum Shift Indicator as an aid for the sports-minded driver in the new BMW 8 Series Convertible. Another item on the list of optional extras is the BMW Night Vision system comprising pedestrian and animal detection as well as a marker light. It relays a real-time video image to the Control Display showing persons, larger animals and other heat-emitting objects. Any objects detected are additionally illuminated using the headlights’ marker light function. Easier parking with Back-Up Assistant Drivers of the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible receive effective assistance when parking and maneuvering. The standard Park Distance Control (PDC) with sensors at the front and rear is standard and provides visual and acoustic warnings to avoid colliding with obstacles at the sides or rear of the vehicle. The standard Parking Assistant is able to automatically select suitable parallel parking spaces and maneuver into them. The spaces are identified by ultrasonic sensors as the vehicle drives past. Once it has been activated by simply pressing and holding a button on the center console, the system takes care of controlling the accelerator, brakes and steering as well as changing gear. The Parking Assistant’s range of functions also includes the Back-Up Assistant, which helps the driver when exiting parking spaces and maneuvering within a confined space. The system assumes the task of steering when backing up by tracing the vehicle’s last forward movements in reverse. All the driver has to do is operate the accelerator and brake pedals and monitor the vehicle’s surroundings. A distance of up to 55 yards can be covered in this way at speeds of up to 6 mph. The system is deactivated if either of these values is exceeded. The included standard camera system is designed to afford drivers a clear all-round view through Rear, Top View, Panorama View and 3D View functions. A 360-degree image of the vehicle and its surroundings is shown on the Control Display from different perspectives. The Remote 3D View function additionally gives drivers the ability to call up a three-dimensional live image of their vehicle and its immediate vicinity on their smartphone. The first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible comes standard with the BMW Live Cockpit Professional, which combines a new display and control concept and maximum connectivity into a superb all-round package. The latest-generation display and control concept consists of a high-resolution instrument cluster behind the steering wheel with a screen diagonal of 12.3 inches and a 10.25?inch Control Display. Live Cockpit Professional: Seventh generation of BMW’s iDrive Operating System The BMW Live Cockpit Professional in the first-ever 2019 BMW 8 Series combines a new display and control concept and the ultimate in connectivity to create a superb all-round package. The latest-generation of the iDrive comprises a high-resolution digital 12.3” instrument cluster display behind the steering wheel and a 10.25” center display diagonally across. The system offers many hardware upgrades including new haptic controls on the iDrive controller, an advanced tablet-like touch interface, and stunning visualizations. This latest system perfectly blends the strengths of previous iDrive concepts with the modern ways in which people expect to interface with their popular electronic devices. The multi-modal approach of the iDrive touch controller, large touchscreen center display, cloud based voice control, and gesture control allow users to interact in the way of their choosing. The seventh incarnation of iDrive, which runs the latest BMW Operating System, has a cutting-edge, fully digital design and is geared even more closely to the driver’s needs by allowing him or her to customize the system to his or her own preference with customizable widgets of information. This new level of personalization is then stored in the BMW cloud and can follow the customer to other BMW vehicles. Various information from categories such as driving, entertainment, navigation, connectivity, and the vehicle info itself, can be selected in nearly any combination in any of four layouts on the Center Display. Multiple pages can be created and easily accessed with a simple swipe across the screen with your finger. To maximize the capabilities of the large 12.3” digital instrument cluster, the traditional circular gauges have been finessed into a new design pushing the speedometer and tachometer gauges to the outer edges of the display as geometric bands. This new design opens space in the middle for routing and navigation. Information from the center display can also be shown within the tachometer. Additionally, your driving mode will determine your visual display style. Other elements of the BMW Live Cockpit Professional are the Navigation Professional system, a hard-drive-based multimedia system with 20 GB of memory and two USB ports, plus Bluetooth interfaces. The driver can be automatically detected and personal settings activated either using the traditional vehicle key or by downloading the driver’s personal settings the BMW Cloud. Drivers can enjoy the full benefits of the car’s intelligent connectivity capabilities through vehicle apps such as news, weather, office and online search. Other capabilities include Intelligent Emergency Call – which automatically summons swift assistance in an emergency – and regular updates for the navigation system’s maps. For the first time, a selection of digital services will be bundled together and offered for the new BMW 8 Series under the guise of the Connected Package Professional. The Connected Package Professional includes Remote Services, Concierge Services, On-street Parking Information, and Real Time Traffic Information and is standard on the first-ever 8 Series for a duration of 4 years. Having this package on the vehicle will allow for easy integration and adaptation of new technology over time. Customers can continue to download various new digital services individually as they become available or renew existing services via the ConnectedDrive Store. BMW Connected: digital services for individual mobility. BMW Connected is the companion app for BMW drivers. Intelligent connectivity helps users to reach their destination easily and with minimal stress – and not only from within their car; BMW Connected is an all-embracing concept designed to seamlessly connect the driver and their smartphone with their vehicle. At the heart of it all is the Open Mobility Cloud, which allows the app to connect the car with the customer’s digital devices. These could include the iPhone and Apple Watch, smartphones and smartwatches running the Android operating system, Alexa-compatible smart devices and Google Home. For instance, the BMW Connected app can import appointments and addresses from the customer’s calendar entries straight into the navigation system to begin route guidance. The system calculates the optimum departure time based on real-time traffic information and notifies the driver with a message on their smartphone when it is time to leave. As the vehicle is linked up via the Open Mobility Cloud, it is able to access the calculated route directly when the navigation system starts up. Remote Software Upgrade Capable. The first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible is Remote Software Upgrade capable. This feature keeps the vehicle up to date with the latest software. All updates can be loaded over the air, similar to smartphones. The upgrades can be loaded onto a smartphone via the BMW Connected app when connected to a Wi-Fi network or imported directly via the BMW’s built-in SIM card. The timing and availability of updates will be determined at a future date. View full article
  18. William Maley

    2019 BMW 8-Series Loses Its Roof

    BMW never offered a convertible version of the 8-Series during the nineties, but the automaker is looking to rectify that with the new model. Later this month, BMW will be rolling out the 2019 8-Series convertible at the L.A. Auto Show. Until then, BMW has decided to spill the beans on it. The 8-Series convertible sports a soft-top that can be raised or lowered in only 15 seconds at speeds of up to 30 mph. A standard wind deflector snaps in behind the rear seats to help reduce the wind in your hair. For those who are crazy enough to drop the top in cold weather, optional neck warmers that are integrated into front headrests will keep you toasty. At launch, BMW will only offer the turbocharged 4.4L V8 producing 523 horsepower and 553 pound-feet of torque for the U.S. This is teamed with an eight-speed automatic and xDrive all-wheel drive. Compared to the coupe, the 8-Series convertible is 0.2 seconds slower to 60 mph (3.8 vs. 3.6 seconds). Blame the extra 258 pounds that the convertible has to lug around. Still, it will hit a top speed of 155 mph - same as the coupe. Pricing for the 2019 BMW 8-Series convertible begins at $122,395 (includes a $995 destination fee). It arrives at dealers in March. Gallery: 2019 BMW 8-Series Convertible Source: BMW The First-Ever 2019 BMW 8 Series Convertible. BMW M850i xDrive launch model with 523 hp and 553 lb-ft torque. 0-60 mph in 3.8 seconds and a limited top speed of 155 mph. Market launch March 2019 M850i xDrive Convertible MSRP $121,400 plus $995 Destination. Woodcliff Lake, NJ – November 1, 2018 …Today, BMW introduced the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible, which joins the new BMW 8 Series Coupe in blending ultra-sporting driving dynamics with an emotional and elegant design. The soft-top, four-seat BMW M850i xDrive Convertible combines immense power and torque delivery from its updated 4.4L 8-cylinder turbocharged engine with tenacious grip and peerless poise from the advanced chassis, luxurious comfort and state-of-the-art innovations in technology, driver assistance and connectivity. The result, is a vehicle that delivers an impeccable four-season driving experience, with the charisma of a low-slung, aggressively styled open top sports convertible, inviting the warming rays of the sun and the wind flowing past the cockpit to be your constant driving companions. Exterior design: new design language gives sporting appeal a new face. The exterior design of the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible exudes a very modern form of sporting appeal, beautifully blended, with an air of exclusiveness and sensual allure. Its unique character is the result of BMW’s new styling language focusing on modernity and emotional engagement. The car’s already low-slung and elongated silhouette is especially enhanced when the fabric-top is lowered. When raised, the compact fabric roof pulls taught over the interior, reducing wind noise and creating a stepped look, accentuating the deck-like rear visual of the new BMW 8 Series Convertible. Classic insulated fabric soft top and rollover protection system The fully-electric soft-top design incorporates multiple layers of fabric materials to not only insulate the occupants of the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible from outside noise and elements but also helps reduce weight from the very top of the vehicle, thus lowering the center of gravity and improving handling and performance. When lowered, the fabric top is stowed under a sophisticated cover with a surface finish and stitching coordinated with those of the instrument panel and interior door and side panel trim. The subtle “double-bubble” contour of the cover behind the two rear seats mimics the design incorporated in the BMW 8 Series Convertible’s roofline. The roof can be raised or lowered in 15 seconds at speeds up to 30 mph with the touch of the top control button located on the center console. A standard wind deflector can be positioned behind the front seats to further enhance the already serene passenger space. When not in use the wind deflector may be folded up and stored in the trunk. Optional neck warmers are available to extend the top down driving experience into cooler temperatures. Air outlets, integrated into front seat head restraints provide a pleasant warming effect. Air flow can be adjusted over three speed settings either manually, via the button on the center console or automatically, which adjusts air flow depending on vehicle speed. The BMW 8 Series Convertible features a standard automatically activated rollover protection system. The system activates the moment that data analysed by the central safety electronics indicate a risk of a roll-over. Two high-strength aluminum rollover bars, fitted behind the rear headrests, are extended by a pyrotechnic charge in a fraction of a second to form a survival space for the vehicle occupants in conjunction with the extremely rigid a-pillar windshield surround. Sculptured design with signature new headlights. The luxury-sport convertible’s promise of performance is visualized in dramatic effect by the prominent, jutting design of the front of the vehicle, with large air intakes creating an imposing appearance on the BMW M850i xDrive Convertible. The BMW kidney grill showcases its increased proportions and features a hexagonal outline that widens towards the bottom and a single-piece surround that encompasses its various elements. The first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible features standard Icon Adaptive LED Headlights with LaserLight technology that are the slimmest headlights of any BMW model to date. Both light tubes are used to generate the daytime driving lights as well as the low and high beam, thereby creating the signature brand look at all times. The rear end is composed of sculptured, emotive surfaces that emphasize the car’s width and low center of gravity. The slender all-LED rear light clusters extend deep into the flanks and add to the effect. The taillights illuminate uniformly in a distinctive ‘L’ shape. Twin, trapezoidal exhaust tailpipes are positioned either side of the rear lower section. Precise details optimize aerodynamics and weight. An almost fully covered underbody, active air flap control with adjustable kidney grille slats and Air Curtains including Air Breathers help to reduce the aerodynamic drag of the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible. Narrow exterior mirror bases, mounted directly on the side window weather strips help smooth the airflow. The optional M Carbon Exterior Package, consisting of air intake bars, exterior mirror caps, a and a rear diffuser insert, all made from CFRP, may be fitted to further enhance the already aggressive aura of the BMW M850i xDrive Convertible. Driver-focused interior The interior has been designed to help the driver focus on the road ahead and enjoy the experience of driving. The car’s wide center console rises up towards the instrument panel at the front, separating the driver and front passenger areas. This center space encompasses the audio control unit and its function buttons, the air conditioning control panel and air vents as well as the freestanding and frameless Control Display, all arranged above each other in a clear, horizontally partitioned structure. clear arrangement of the controls helps the driver to focus on what’s happening ahead. Apart from the gear selector and the iDrive Controller, the center console also accommodates the Driving Experience Control switch and the engine start/stop button, all arranged within a newly designed function cluster with active haptic feedback. The control unit for the light functions is new and now consists of buttons positioned at the bottom of the instrument panel between the steering wheel and the driver’s door. A leather M Sport steering wheel with multifunction buttons and shift paddles for manual gear selection is standard. Merino Individual Leather upholstery and folding rear seats as standard. The newly developed sports seats offer high levels of long-distance comfort and excellent lateral support. The headrests are integrated into the backrests and can be adjusted for both height and fore/aft position. A semi-electric folding function has been included for the front seat backrests, which is activated by using a high-quality leather strap located on each seatback to facilitate convenient entry and exit for the rear passengers. The sports seats are upholstered in standard premium Merino Individual leather with extended leather appointments. Decorative stitching in a contrasting color accentuates both the sporting contours and the rear seats’ styling as individual seats. There are large door pockets, a roomy glove compartment, two cup-holders under the center console’s trim finisher and a large storage compartment under the armrest’s longitudinally divided covers for stowing travel accessories, beverages and other items. The rear backrest in the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible has a 50:50 split design. The backrest sections can be folded down either individually or together to further increase cargo capacity. The folding mechanism is released by means of levers inside the cargo compartment. Automatic trunk lid operation is a standard feature on the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible, while the Comfort Access option permits hands-free opening and closing of the trunk lid. BMW M Performance model with exclusive features. The standard specification for the new BMW M850i xDrive Convertible contains exclusive design features and options to enhance the driving experience. In addition to multifunction seats and the M leather steering wheel, there are M pedals, M driver’s footrest and special floor mats to imbue the cabin with a distinctly sporty flair. The illuminated door sills and the display in the instrument cluster bear the BMW M Performance Automobile model badge or the M logo respectively. Premium options for enhanced luxury. The luxurious side of the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible’s character is shown with the help of a wide array of distinctive optional extras. Newly designed climate seats for driver and front passenger are available as an upgrade to the standard heated seats. For the first time, the cooled air is drawn in from the interior then guided along the body to the seats’ built-in fans for particularly effective temperature control of the seat cushions and backrests. The standard ambient light feature emphasizes the forward-pointing lines inside the car to striking effect. Indirect illumination of the contour lines running along the center console and the door shoulders using precisely positioned LED optical fibers creates an exclusive mood. The color of the light can be changed via the iDrive menu. In addition to this, the Dynamic interior light function emits pulsating light signals in specific situations. These signals appear on the inner panelling of an open door when the engine is running and on the instrument panel in response to an incoming phone call. The standard Harman Kardon audio system comprises twelve speakers and a digital amplifier, while the pinnacle of the audio line-up is without doubt the optional Bowers & Wilkins Diamond Surround Sound System. The unrivalled Diamond loudspeaker technology, fully active 12-channel amplifier with an output of 1,375 watts, dynamic equalizing and 12 partly illuminated speakers combine together to deliver a beautifully precise and multifaceted acoustic experience whose pristine quality can be enjoyed in equal measure from all seats in the new BMW 8 Series Convertible. The optional glass applications for selected controls add both visual and tactile highlights to the interior design. This exclusive design feature adorns the gear selector, the iDrive Controller, the start/stop button and the volume control for the audio system. An illuminated ‘8’ can be seen through the glass surface of the gear selector. Remote Start is available as part of the optional Comfort Seating Package, which also includes front ventilated seats and heated front seat armrests and steering wheel. The BMW M Performance model that will be available from launch provides a particularly impressive demonstration of the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible’s sporting essence. Under the hood lies a 523 hp BMW TwinPower Turbo V8 engine that has undergone extensive upgrades and refinement. It serves up an intense form of the unmistakable power delivery and acoustics of eight-cylinder units and is every bit as captivating and emotionally thrilling as the car it powers. Power is transferred to the wheels via the latest-generation eight-speed Steptronic Sport transmission that boasts a wider gear ratio spread, even sportier gear shifts and can be operated by means of shift paddles on the steering wheel. Completing the all-round package for an engaging driving experience is the BMW xDrive intelligent all-wheel-drive system, which is fitted in a newly improved version that has been tuned for this specific model. The rear-wheel bias of the xDrive system and the rear differential lock fitted as standard on the first-ever BMW M850i xDrive Convertible ensure maximum agility and precision when the car’s sporting capabilities are being put to the test. Updated V8 engine with incredible power and acoustics. The launch of the first-ever BMW M850i xDrive Convertible also marks the premiere of a new BMW TwinPower Turbo V8 engine. The latest generation of the 4.4-liter eight-cylinder engine has been radically revised with numerous detailed improvements. Two twin-scroll turbochargers with charge air cooling located within the V-shaped space between the cylinder banks, High Precision Injection, VALVETRONIC fully variable valve control and Double-VANOS variable camshaft timing all form part of the M Performance TwinPower Turbo technology, whose extensive overhaul has given a substantial boost to maximum power, torque and efficiency. The new V8 engine serves up an enthralling soundtrack, which is enhanced by the standard flap-controlled sports exhaust system. It boasts a wonderfully versatile character that can also adapt itself to effortlessly relaxed cruising. The Driving Experience Control switch can be used to activate both extremely sporty and distinctly comfort-oriented powertrain settings. In the SPORT and SPORT+ modes, accelerator response as well as the V8 engine’s power delivery and acoustics – which take on a particularly distinctive note in the SPORT+ setting – are all configured for an exhilarating driving experience. A new aluminium alloy has been used to increase the strength of the engine block. The wire-arc sprayed iron coating for the cylinder walls serves to reduce frictional losses. Reinforced, Grafal-coated pistons and optimized piston rings are designed to endure the stress on the crank drive that comes with the extra output and torque. To enhance engine smoothness, torsional vibration is minimized with the help of a viscous damper on the crankshaft. Optimized power delivery, efficiency and emissions performance. To achieve rapid combustion, the intake ports have been optimized for higher flow. The enlarged twin-scroll turbochargers and the variable valve and camshaft timing enable throttle losses during the gas-exchange cycle to be eliminated as far as possible and allow effective use of exhaust gas recirculation for lowering fuel consumption. Electrically-controlled wastegate actuators are used to ensure an extremely quick build-up of boost pressure, while electric blow-off valves are integrated into the compressor housing to enhance the turbocharger sound during boost pressure release while at the same time as keeping emissions as low as possible in all operating conditions. The air intake manifold has been redesigned and a connection between the air ducts for both cylinder banks ensures even pulsation during gas exchange, resulting in higher torque at lower engine speeds. The multi-hole fuel injectors are positioned centrally between the valves and spray fuel at a maximum pressure that has been increased from 2,900 psi to 5,076 psi. This optimizes both the metering of the fuel and the engine’s emissions performance. The BMW TwinPower Turbo V8 engine also takes advantage of a new ignition system and engine management. Thermal shielding and the cooling circulation system have both undergone extensive modification. An upstream coolant radiator helps meet the high demands on the engine’s temperature management during extremely spirited driving. The new BMW TwinPower Turbo V8 engine now generates 523 hp between 5,500 and 6,000 rpm and 553 lb-ft of torque from 1,800 to 4,600 rpm. Eight-speed Steptronic Sport transmission with wider ratios and sportier shifts. The latest improved version of the Sport automatic transmission features a weight-reducing design, a newly developed controller and a wider gear ratio spread. As a result, it is possible to achieve efficiency gains with reduced engine speeds, particularly when driving in higher gears. At the same time, the eight-speed Steptronic Sport transmission now shifts gear more sharply courtesy of optimized hydraulics control. A new generation of torsion dampers that reduce rotational forces within the powertrain help improve both driving comfort and shift smoothness. Integral twin-damper systems for isolating vibrations reduce the degree of slip at the torque converter lock-up clutch. Shift paddles on the steering wheel are included as standard for manual gear selection, while a Launch Control function allows for accelerating from a standing start with maximum available traction. Intelligent networking increases performance and efficiency. The eight-speed Steptronic Sport transmission’s controller is able to adapt the shift parameters to the current driving situation by means of intelligent networking with the standard Navigation system, enabling it to take the planned route into account. Navigation data is used to downshift early, for example, when approaching an intersection in order to use engine braking to slow the car down. Likewise, the intelligent controller is able to avoid unnecessary gear shifts between two corners that follow in quick succession, making it possible to drive through at a quicker pace. Intelligent networking increases the efficiency of the drive system in the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible by allowing Auto Start Stop operation to adapt to suit the specific situation based on data supplied by the navigation system as well as by the cameras and radar sensors of the optional driver assistance systems. In this way, inefficient engine shutdown – for example when stopping briefly at junctions with yield signs – can be prevented. The movement of vehicles ahead is registered in order to determine the ideal moment for stopping and starting the engine. Intelligent networking also boosts the efficiency-enhancing effect of the coasting function. When travelling at speeds between 9 – 99 mph, it ensures that the powertrain is decoupled as soon as the driver lifts off the accelerator. The vehicle can then simply coast along at idling speed and with minimized fuel consumption. This function is available with the Driving Experience Control switch set to ECO Pro mode. The switch to this “sail” mode only takes place in driving situations in which it appears worthwhile and which doesn’t compromise comfort or performance. If the accelerator is released very suddenly for instance, the powertrain stays connected in order to use the engine’s drag torque to decelerate. BMW xDrive with electronically controlled differential lock. The BMW xDrive intelligent all-wheel-drive system has been improved for more efficient operation. With its rapid, precise and fully variable distribution of drive torque between the front and rear wheels, it maximizes traction and handling stability not just when driving in adverse road conditions, but in performance driving situations as well. Power is split in accordance with demands at all times using an electronically controlled multi-plate clutch that is networked with the powertrain and chassis systems. This results in extremely quick and exact response to any change in the driving situation. To increase the system’s efficiency, all of the drive torque is directed to the rear wheels in situations when all-wheel drive is not needed. The xDrive system’s rear-biased set-up guarantees a driving experience for which BMW sports cars are renowned. The fact that the all-wheel-drive system has been specifically designed for performance handling is especially noticeable in the SPORT and SPORT+ modes selected via the Driving Experience Control switch. Governed by the Driving Stability Control (DSC) system, the locking function for the standard electronically controlled rear differential improves traction and power transmission when driving on road surfaces offering differing levels of grip for the left and right rear wheels by preventing a wheel from spinning when traction is limited. The locking effect produced by the electric motor allows the drive torque to be redirected from the faster turning to the slower turning tire. This combines with the intelligent all-wheel drive and the standard Integral Active Steering to give the car all the right tools for excellent handling and remarkably agility in all driving situations. Suspension technology sharpened with racing know-how. The suspension technology developed for the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible consists of a double-wishbone front axle and a five-link rear axle as well as electromechanical steering and an exceptionally powerful braking system developed exclusively for this new model. The racing know-how of BMW M GmbH was used for detailed modifications and enhancements to the overall suspension set-up. Torsion struts on the front axle and a load-bearing strut incorporated on the rear axle optimize stiffness and the connection of suspension components to the chassis. Independent rubber bearings – which increase camber stiffness – and additional damping plates at the rear axle further enhance the suspension’s baseline set-up. Special wheel hubs and wishbones allow camber values on both axles to be raised as far as possible. This significantly increases the car’s ability to put down power through high-speed corners. The design principle of the double-wishbone front suspension makes it possible to separate steering and damper functions. As a result, high lateral acceleration forces are possible without compromising ride comfort. The car’s steering remains largely unaffected by disruptive forces caused by irregularities in the road surface. Thanks to bi-elastic bushings, the five-link rear axle guarantees precise wheel guidance and the highest degree of directional stability. In addition, effective isolation of the powertrain and suspension improves interior acoustic comfort. Adaptive M suspension and Integral Active Steering standard. Standard on the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible is Adaptive M suspension with electronically controlled dampers. Both compression and rebound are adjusted continuously and independently. This facilitates finely tuned spring and damping responses, providing the driver with only relevant information about the road surface. The extremely stiff suspension springs reduce roll tendency and allow the dampers to stabilize the wheels as much as possible, avoiding traction losses caused by bumps and ruts in the road surface. The electronically controlled dampers respond adaptively to road surface conditions and driving style in order to eliminate undesired vehicle movement. Minor road damage is comfortably filtered out and narrow bumps do not induce unwanted pitching movements. Damping characteristics can be adjusted via the Driving Experience Control switch. SPORT and SPORT+ modes activate optimal responses for maximum handling. This is noticeably different from the comfort-oriented damper setting in ECO Pro and COMFORT modes. The standard Integral Active Steering also reduces the car’s turning circle when maneuvering, increases agility at moderate speeds and optimizes stability when changing lanes and cornering at high speeds. The system combines the electromechanical steering of the front wheels (including Servotronic function for speed-sensitive power assistance) and the variable steering ratio in the rear axle steering. In order to achieve maximum precision during performance cornering, the steering of the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible becomes more direct with speed. As a result, on winding roads the car feels particularly agile and easy to control. The variable steering ratio also provides additional comfort; allowing the driver to maneuver at low speeds with minimal steering wheel movement and without having to change their grip on the wheel. By contrast, at high speeds, the same steering wheel movement results in decreased steering response, optimizing turn-in precision. Active steering of the rear wheels by up to 2.5 degrees – thanks to Integral Active Steering – considerably enhances the cornering ability of the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible. The rear wheels are steered in the opposite direction to the front wheels at speeds up to 45 mph. At higher speeds, the steering angle of the rear wheels matches that of the front wheels, ensuring the car adopts the course determined by the driver quicker and more accurately. At the car’s traction limit, it feeds in a stabilizing steering input to complement the triggered braking intervention. Activating SPORT or SPORT+ model via the Driving Experience Control switch gives a more direct steering response. At the same time, the maximum speed at which the rear wheels are steered in the opposite direction to the front wheels is increased to 55 mph. Active roll stabilization Active roll stabilization is optionally available for the first-ever BMW M850i xDrive Convertible and further enhances the car’s sporty handling characteristics. Electric swivel motors on the front and rear anti-roll bars ensure fast and precise compensation for lateral forces during dynamic driving maneuvers. The system is controlled through a constant analysis of vehicle speed, lateral and longitudinal acceleration, steering wheel position, wheel and body acceleration and variation in height levels. In BMW M Performance models, active roll stabilization has an exceptionally sporty set-up and responds adaptively to changing requirements. It optimizes agility and directional stability on turn-in and helps line the car up as neatly as possible for improved acceleration out of corners. The reduced body movement also means that fast evasive maneuvers can be executed with great assurance. At the opposite end of the spectrum, the system increases comfort when driving straight ahead by decoupling the permanent anti-roll bar connection between the wheels of an axle. By stabilizing the wheel that requires it, the system is extremely effective in counteracting disruptive forces resulting from road surface imperfections on one side of the car. M Sport braking systems, light-alloy wheels with high-performance tires. Powerful braking characteristics, high thermal stability, fast response and excellent feel characterize the braking system developed for the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible. Four-piston, fixed-calliper brakes at the front are complemented by single-piston, floating-calliper brakes at the rear. The electronic parking brake – operated by means of a button located on the center console – is integrated into the rear brake callipers. The integration of the braking system and DSC stability control guarantees precise braking response, braking control and brake boosting. Inner-vented brake discs and model-specific brake pads are featured both at the front and rear. Directional cooling air ducts help to reduce temperatures. The friction rings of each brake disc are riveted to an aluminum drum. Together with the use of aluminum brake callipers, this BMW-patented construction concept significantly reduces unsprung weight. The M Sport braking system is recognizable by blue callipers featuring the M logo. The suspension technology featured in the new BMW M850i xDrive Convertible is oriented towards maximum performance and rounded off by 20-inch M light-alloy wheels. The cast aluminum wheels are standard and come in the exclusive color Frozen Cerium Grey metallic with a high-gloss polished finish on the face. They are fitted with 245/35R20 tires at the front and 275/30R20 tires at the rear. The high-performance tires were developed by the manufacturer specifically for the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible. Ideal overall package for maximum performance. The suspension system for the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible has been tuned – down to the finest detail – to the powertrain technology. Moreover, all the vehicle dynamics-related systems have been linked up with one another via the high-speed data transfer system called FlexRay to create an overall package geared towards maximum performance. Constant measurement of the driving situation data by sensors forms the basis for coordinated system responses. Within a split second, the control unit integrated into the braking system and DSC is able to adapt the powertrain and suspension functions to changing situations, such as varying road surface conditions, sudden braking, spontaneous steering maneuvers and extreme acceleration. Here, the steering, four-wheel-drive system, electronically controlled differential lock and active roll stabilization are all employed to assist the stabilizing effect of brake intervention on individual wheels and adjustment of drive torque. A hierarchical control structure guarantees optimal control of the relevant actuators. For example, to optimize directional stability when braking heavily on road surfaces with varying grip levels under the right and left-hand wheels, a steering impulse can be transmitted to inform the driver of the necessity to adjust their line. With carefully judged steering inputs on the rear axle, it is possible to counteract a tendency to oversteer or understeer. Adjustments by the active roll stabilization system will assist in enhancing stability and agility. Precisely controlled anti-roll bar swivel motors can optimize traction in fast bends. Centrally evaluated data on the driving situation optimizes the efficiency of the BMW xDrive system’s responses. Optimized weight thanks to intelligent material use. BMW EfficientLightweight includes the use of an intelligent material mix to optimize both weight and body/suspension rigidity. In addition to the supporting structures at the front and rear of the car, other components such as the doors, hood and the front firewall of the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible are made of aluminum. The bracing tube for the passenger compartment is made from magnesium and the center tunnel is made of CFRP. The front axle is made almost completely from aluminum. The rear axle features a combination of lightweight steel construction with wheel carriers and forged control arms in aluminum. BMW Personal Co-Pilot suite of Driver Assist systems A particularly wide variety of standard and optionally available driver assistance systems marks the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible as an extremely advanced model within its segment. The systems really come into their own when driving longer distances by relieving the strain on the driver in monotonous situations, such as traffic jams or slow-moving traffic. They enhance comfort and safety both in urban traffic and on longer trips by providing targeted assistance in complex traffic situations. The driver assistance systems process camera images as well as the data gathered by ultrasonic and radar sensors to monitor the vehicle’s surroundings, to warn of potential hazards and to minimise the risk of an accident with corrective braking or steering inputs. These integral features of the BMW Personal Co?Pilot represent the latest advances on the road to automated driving. The BMW 8 Series Convertible is equipped with standard Collision and Pedestrian Warning with City Braking function, the latest version of which alerts the driver when a cyclist is detected. Depending on the situation, the system can bring the vehicle to a halt to either avoid a collision or minimize its consequences. The optional Driving Assistant Professional offers comprehensive assistance for comfortable and safe driving. This package includes Active Cruise Control with Stop & Go function. It can be used at speeds up to 130 mph and maintains the desired speed while taking not only the traffic situation into account, but also the selected distance to vehicles in front. If required, the system is able to brake the car to a stop then pull away again automatically after being stationary for up to 30 seconds, meaning greater comfort in stop-start traffic. Camera images and data from a front radar system are used for distance control. In addition to Active Cruise Control with Stop & Go function, this complete package also includes the Steering and Lane Control assistant. To allow convenient activation of the two systems, the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible is fitted with a special button on the standard multifunction steering wheel for switching on the Active Cruise Control and Steering and lane control assistant simultaneously. A mode button can be pressed to switch to using Active Cruise Control on its own. Another component of the Driving Assistant Professional is the Lane Keeping Assistant with Active Side Collision Protection. This is made up of the Lane Departure Warning and Active Blind Spot Detection systems, which are active from 44 – 130 mph and 12 mph up to top speed respectively and help the driver guide the vehicle back onto the correct path with an active turn of the steering. Besides emitting visual warning signals and causing the steering wheel to vibrate, active side collision protection also uses active steering intervention to help avoid a collision. The Driving Assistant Professional also includes the evasion aid, which now also reacts to pedestrians. The Crossing Traffic Warning – which reduces the danger of a collision when maneuvering forwards towards roads that are obstructed from the driver’s view – now also includes brake intervention. The latest-generation Head-Up Display. The BMW Head-Up Display, which comes as standard in the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible and projects relevant driving information onto the windscreen in the form of graphics, is another factor in the intensely focused driving experience. The latest generation of the system features a larger projection area, optimized graphics and additional content. The BMW Head-Up Display projects information directly into the driver’s field of vision where it can be assimilated without any need for them to divert their eyes from the road. This includes details of vehicle speed, speed limits and overtaking restrictions, Check Control messages, status indicators and warnings from the assistance systems, detailed route guidance and turn instructions, as well as telephone and entertainment lists. When driving with the Driving Experience Control switch in SPORT or SPORT+ mode, the Head-Up Display also indicates engine speed. Plus, there is a digital Optimum Shift Indicator as an aid for the sports-minded driver in the new BMW 8 Series Convertible. Another item on the list of optional extras is the BMW Night Vision system comprising pedestrian and animal detection as well as a marker light. It relays a real-time video image to the Control Display showing persons, larger animals and other heat-emitting objects. Any objects detected are additionally illuminated using the headlights’ marker light function. Easier parking with Back-Up Assistant Drivers of the first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible receive effective assistance when parking and maneuvering. The standard Park Distance Control (PDC) with sensors at the front and rear is standard and provides visual and acoustic warnings to avoid colliding with obstacles at the sides or rear of the vehicle. The standard Parking Assistant is able to automatically select suitable parallel parking spaces and maneuver into them. The spaces are identified by ultrasonic sensors as the vehicle drives past. Once it has been activated by simply pressing and holding a button on the center console, the system takes care of controlling the accelerator, brakes and steering as well as changing gear. The Parking Assistant’s range of functions also includes the Back-Up Assistant, which helps the driver when exiting parking spaces and maneuvering within a confined space. The system assumes the task of steering when backing up by tracing the vehicle’s last forward movements in reverse. All the driver has to do is operate the accelerator and brake pedals and monitor the vehicle’s surroundings. A distance of up to 55 yards can be covered in this way at speeds of up to 6 mph. The system is deactivated if either of these values is exceeded. The included standard camera system is designed to afford drivers a clear all-round view through Rear, Top View, Panorama View and 3D View functions. A 360-degree image of the vehicle and its surroundings is shown on the Control Display from different perspectives. The Remote 3D View function additionally gives drivers the ability to call up a three-dimensional live image of their vehicle and its immediate vicinity on their smartphone. The first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible comes standard with the BMW Live Cockpit Professional, which combines a new display and control concept and maximum connectivity into a superb all-round package. The latest-generation display and control concept consists of a high-resolution instrument cluster behind the steering wheel with a screen diagonal of 12.3 inches and a 10.25?inch Control Display. Live Cockpit Professional: Seventh generation of BMW’s iDrive Operating System The BMW Live Cockpit Professional in the first-ever 2019 BMW 8 Series combines a new display and control concept and the ultimate in connectivity to create a superb all-round package. The latest-generation of the iDrive comprises a high-resolution digital 12.3” instrument cluster display behind the steering wheel and a 10.25” center display diagonally across. The system offers many hardware upgrades including new haptic controls on the iDrive controller, an advanced tablet-like touch interface, and stunning visualizations. This latest system perfectly blends the strengths of previous iDrive concepts with the modern ways in which people expect to interface with their popular electronic devices. The multi-modal approach of the iDrive touch controller, large touchscreen center display, cloud based voice control, and gesture control allow users to interact in the way of their choosing. The seventh incarnation of iDrive, which runs the latest BMW Operating System, has a cutting-edge, fully digital design and is geared even more closely to the driver’s needs by allowing him or her to customize the system to his or her own preference with customizable widgets of information. This new level of personalization is then stored in the BMW cloud and can follow the customer to other BMW vehicles. Various information from categories such as driving, entertainment, navigation, connectivity, and the vehicle info itself, can be selected in nearly any combination in any of four layouts on the Center Display. Multiple pages can be created and easily accessed with a simple swipe across the screen with your finger. To maximize the capabilities of the large 12.3” digital instrument cluster, the traditional circular gauges have been finessed into a new design pushing the speedometer and tachometer gauges to the outer edges of the display as geometric bands. This new design opens space in the middle for routing and navigation. Information from the center display can also be shown within the tachometer. Additionally, your driving mode will determine your visual display style. Other elements of the BMW Live Cockpit Professional are the Navigation Professional system, a hard-drive-based multimedia system with 20 GB of memory and two USB ports, plus Bluetooth interfaces. The driver can be automatically detected and personal settings activated either using the traditional vehicle key or by downloading the driver’s personal settings the BMW Cloud. Drivers can enjoy the full benefits of the car’s intelligent connectivity capabilities through vehicle apps such as news, weather, office and online search. Other capabilities include Intelligent Emergency Call – which automatically summons swift assistance in an emergency – and regular updates for the navigation system’s maps. For the first time, a selection of digital services will be bundled together and offered for the new BMW 8 Series under the guise of the Connected Package Professional. The Connected Package Professional includes Remote Services, Concierge Services, On-street Parking Information, and Real Time Traffic Information and is standard on the first-ever 8 Series for a duration of 4 years. Having this package on the vehicle will allow for easy integration and adaptation of new technology over time. Customers can continue to download various new digital services individually as they become available or renew existing services via the ConnectedDrive Store. BMW Connected: digital services for individual mobility. BMW Connected is the companion app for BMW drivers. Intelligent connectivity helps users to reach their destination easily and with minimal stress – and not only from within their car; BMW Connected is an all-embracing concept designed to seamlessly connect the driver and their smartphone with their vehicle. At the heart of it all is the Open Mobility Cloud, which allows the app to connect the car with the customer’s digital devices. These could include the iPhone and Apple Watch, smartphones and smartwatches running the Android operating system, Alexa-compatible smart devices and Google Home. For instance, the BMW Connected app can import appointments and addresses from the customer’s calendar entries straight into the navigation system to begin route guidance. The system calculates the optimum departure time based on real-time traffic information and notifies the driver with a message on their smartphone when it is time to leave. As the vehicle is linked up via the Open Mobility Cloud, it is able to access the calculated route directly when the navigation system starts up. Remote Software Upgrade Capable. The first-ever BMW 8 Series Convertible is Remote Software Upgrade capable. This feature keeps the vehicle up to date with the latest software. All updates can be loaded over the air, similar to smartphones. The upgrades can be loaded onto a smartphone via the BMW Connected app when connected to a Wi-Fi network or imported directly via the BMW’s built-in SIM card. The timing and availability of updates will be determined at a future date.
  19. It is no secret that Mazda is planning to bring over the turbocharged 2.5L four-cylinder from the CX-9 and Mazda6, considering the various leaked documents that have come out in the past few months and the announcement of the Japanese market version. Now, new documents have come to light revealing that the U.S. variant will get the turbo engine, along with some other key changes. The leaked "Product Information Bulletin" reveals the turbo engine (227 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque) will be available on two new trims - Grand Touring Reserve and Signature. Somewhat surprising, the engine will not be available on the Grand Touring like on the 6. All-wheel drive will be standard for the turbo engine. Mazda will also be adding an updated G-Vectoring Control Plus system (uses the braking system to keep the car stable when exiting a corner), and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto for Touring and models above. What is somewhat surprising is no mention of the 2.2L turbodiesel in the document, despite the EPA fuel economy figures coming out. Maybe Mazda got cold feet and has decided to pull the plug or that the 2.5T threatens the diesel as it produces the same amount of torque. This is just speculation on our part and maybe the diesel will come. As for pricing, the 2019 Mazda CX-5 begins at $25,345 after the $995 destination charge. Adding the turbo engine adds a significant cost - $35,865 for the Grand Touring Reserve and $37,885 for the Signature. Source: Reddit View full article
  20. It is no secret that Mazda is planning to bring over the turbocharged 2.5L four-cylinder from the CX-9 and Mazda6, considering the various leaked documents that have come out in the past few months and the announcement of the Japanese market version. Now, new documents have come to light revealing that the U.S. variant will get the turbo engine, along with some other key changes. The leaked "Product Information Bulletin" reveals the turbo engine (227 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque) will be available on two new trims - Grand Touring Reserve and Signature. Somewhat surprising, the engine will not be available on the Grand Touring like on the 6. All-wheel drive will be standard for the turbo engine. Mazda will also be adding an updated G-Vectoring Control Plus system (uses the braking system to keep the car stable when exiting a corner), and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto for Touring and models above. What is somewhat surprising is no mention of the 2.2L turbodiesel in the document, despite the EPA fuel economy figures coming out. Maybe Mazda got cold feet and has decided to pull the plug or that the 2.5T threatens the diesel as it produces the same amount of torque. This is just speculation on our part and maybe the diesel will come. As for pricing, the 2019 Mazda CX-5 begins at $25,345 after the $995 destination charge. Adding the turbo engine adds a significant cost - $35,865 for the Grand Touring Reserve and $37,885 for the Signature. Source: Reddit
  21. When we drove the Volkswagen Atlas back in the summer, we liked the base turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder for the most part. Aside from noticeable turbo-lag, the engine provided decent oomph. But for 2019, Volkswagen is quietly reducing the number of models you can order with the turbo 2.0L. CarsDirect recently obtained the order guide for the 2019 Atlas and reports that the base S trim will be the only model available with the 2.0T. Previously, the SE and SEL could be ordered with the 2.0T. Volkswagen has also decided to drop V6 FWD configuration for the S. This means the mid-level SE is now the cheapest way to get the V6 FWD configuration - $36,490 vs. $35,090 for the S V6 AWD. Why is Volkswagen doing this? The most likely reason comes down to the four-cylinder version of the Atlas not really being available at dealers. If you wanted one, you had to order it straight from the factory. Source: CarsDirect View full article
  22. When we drove the Volkswagen Atlas back in the summer, we liked the base turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder for the most part. Aside from noticeable turbo-lag, the engine provided decent oomph. But for 2019, Volkswagen is quietly reducing the number of models you can order with the turbo 2.0L. CarsDirect recently obtained the order guide for the 2019 Atlas and reports that the base S trim will be the only model available with the 2.0T. Previously, the SE and SEL could be ordered with the 2.0T. Volkswagen has also decided to drop V6 FWD configuration for the S. This means the mid-level SE is now the cheapest way to get the V6 FWD configuration - $36,490 vs. $35,090 for the S V6 AWD. Why is Volkswagen doing this? The most likely reason comes down to the four-cylinder version of the Atlas not really being available at dealers. If you wanted one, you had to order it straight from the factory. Source: CarsDirect
  23. Nissan will be using next month's LA Auto Show to unveil an updated version of their flagship Maxima sedan. At first glance, you might be wondering if there any changes - looks the same as the old one. But take a closer look and you notice the new headlights with certain models getting full-LED versions. The V-shaped grille looks be slightly larger and wider, and there are new small intake grilles. Nissan will also be offering their Safety Shield 360 suite of active safety features that include front and rear automatic emergency braking, blind spot warning, rear cross traffic alert, lane departure warning, and automatic high beams. Nissan says the Maxima will go sale in December. There's still a lot of things up in the air, such if there are any changes coming to the interior and powertrain. We'll have more details in a month's time. Source: Nissan Nissan Maxima to debut at upcoming Los Angeles Auto Show NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Nissan Maxima, which makes its world debut at the Los Angeles Auto Show, receives a fresh new look for the 2019 model year. The new Maxima will also offer available Nissan Safety Shield 360 technology, a suite of six advanced safety and driver-assist technologies. The 2019 Maxima, the flagship of Nissan’s sedan lineup, goes on sale in December. View full article
  24. Nissan will be using next month's LA Auto Show to unveil an updated version of their flagship Maxima sedan. At first glance, you might be wondering if there any changes - looks the same as the old one. But take a closer look and you notice the new headlights with certain models getting full-LED versions. The V-shaped grille looks be slightly larger and wider, and there are new small intake grilles. Nissan will also be offering their Safety Shield 360 suite of active safety features that include front and rear automatic emergency braking, blind spot warning, rear cross traffic alert, lane departure warning, and automatic high beams. Nissan says the Maxima will go sale in December. There's still a lot of things up in the air, such if there are any changes coming to the interior and powertrain. We'll have more details in a month's time. Source: Nissan Nissan Maxima to debut at upcoming Los Angeles Auto Show NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Nissan Maxima, which makes its world debut at the Los Angeles Auto Show, receives a fresh new look for the 2019 model year. The new Maxima will also offer available Nissan Safety Shield 360 technology, a suite of six advanced safety and driver-assist technologies. The 2019 Maxima, the flagship of Nissan’s sedan lineup, goes on sale in December.
  25. Last month, Chevrolet announced the 2019 Blazer would begin at $29,995, undercutting the likes of Ford Edge and Nissan Murano. But Cars Direct has gone through the order guide and did some analysis. What they found out is that Blazer isn't as a good deal as Chevrolet is promoting to be. Let's start with the base the Blazer L which begins at $29,995. CarsDirect believes this model "is likely intended mainly for advertising purposes." This is something we saw before when Buick launched the Regal TourX. The L model is also excluded from factory discounts. Most buyers will likely be pushed towards the 1LT which begins at $33,495 - $1,700 more expensive than the Murano S and $2,505 more expensive than the Edge SE. Both the Murano and Edge pack more powerful engines (Blazer uses a 2.5L four-cylinder with 193 hp and 188 lb-ft of torque) and have the option of AWD. The Blazer can only get AWD on 2LT models and above. The 2LT begins at $34,495 and adds the 3.6L V6 engine - 305 horsepower and 269 pound-feet of torque. If you want AWD, be prepared to shell out an additional $2,700. Again, AWD is cheaper on the Murano ($1,600) and Edge ($1,950). Another disappointment for the Blazer is how much you need to shell out for advanced driver assistance features. If you want adaptive cruise control and front collision warning, then first you need pay $41,795 for the RS and then add $3,575 for Enhanced Convenience and Driver Confidence II Package. If you want automatic emergency braking, then you'll need to step up to the top-line Premier at $43,895 and add the Driver Confidence Package II for an additional $2,165. AEB is standard on the Murano and Edge. Based on this analysis, it does make the Blazer a bit of a tough sell. We'll have to see how things play out in the coming months. Source: CarsDirect View full article

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