I will try my best to provide detailed info on various cars and what is like to live with them, I have already produced a few for Jaguar-car-forums, I will do my best to be unbiased, but it will be hard for some cars. I will re-produce press releases and copy from other motoring news.

Friday, 23 December 2016

Euro NCAP has awarded the VW Tiguan the Best in class for the small off roader, Tiguan SUV.

  • New Tiguan is best in class in the "Small off-roader" segment
  • First class safety package in the new Tiguan is declared a winner
The European New Car Assessment Programme Euro NCAP has published the best models of the year for 2016. The coveted title goes to the Tiguan, which was awarded "Best in Class" in the "Small off-roader" segment. 
This successor to the popular best-seller is among the safest vehicles in its segment.
In June, the new Tiguan already passed the demanding Euro NCAP crash test series and received the highest five star rating. The results of four sub-areas were taken into account: proactive occupant protection system for children and adults, pedestrian protection and driver assistance systems.

The NCAP test standards were tightened again in 2016. This year, new child size dummies formed part of the testing equipment for the first time. The new Tiguan achieved an excellent result in occupant protection for adults and children. Thanks to the standard ISOFIX and Top Tether child seat anchors in combination with safety belt tensioners on the second row of seats, children and adults are very well protected in the event of any frontal or side impact.

In terms of pedestrian protection, the structural details of the Tiguan in particular were assessed positively. These include the 'active bonnet' feature, which is designed to help reduce dangerous head injuries in the event of a collision. Moreover, the Tiguan impressed with its pedestrian monitoring and ambient traffic monitoring system "Front Assist" with City Emergency Braking, which at the very least reduces the severity of an accident and in the best case even prevents the accident altogether. In addition, security systems such as ESC (Electronic Stability Control), the seatbelt fastening reminder function for the back seats and the active lane-keeping system "Lane Assist" are standard on the current Tiguan.

Euro NCAP publishes a list of the top-ranked vehicles each year. In 2016 a total of 22 models from all manufacturers were subjected to the rigorous Euro NCAP testing process. Last year the Touran also won the coveted "Best in Class".

The new Mercedes-Benz E-Class Coupé is now on sale with prices starting from £40,135 for the E 220 d.

  • Prices start at £40,135 OTR for E 220 d Coupé
  • E 220 d, E 300 and E 400 4MATIC available from launch
  • One generous trim level available: AMG Line
  • Available to order now, with first UK deliveries in April 2017
The new Mercedes-Benz E-Class Coupé is now on sale with prices starting from £40,135 for the E 220 d. The E 300 is available from £41,025, while the E 400 4MATIC starts from £50,775.
The E-Class Coupé is available with a choice of one diesel and two petrol engines. The E 220 d features a 2.0-litre diesel engine, capable of generating 194 hp and 400 Nm. It emits just 119 g/km of CO2 and can achieve up to 61.4 mpg on the combined cycle. It can reach 62 mph from standstill in 7.4 seconds.
The E 300 uses a 2.0-litre turbo-charged petrol engine with an output of 245 hp and maximum torque of 370 Nm. It emits 160 g/km of CO2 and delivers up to 40.4 mpg, while it can sprint from 0 to 62 mph in 6.4 seconds. 

The E 400 4MATIC has a biturbo 3.0-litre V6 petrol engine generating 333 hp and 480 Nm, while emitting 189 g/km of CO2 and delivering up to 33.6 mpg. It can reach 62 mph from standstill in 5.3 seconds.
The new E-Class Coupé is available in one highly-equipped trim line: AMG Line. Standard specification includes sports exhaust system (E 300 only); 19-inch five-twin-spoke alloy wheels; high performance LED headlights and tail lights; parking pilot including parking sensors and reversing camera; belt feeder; Magic Vision Control; ambient lighting with a choice of 64 colours; 8.4-inch infotainment screen with Garmin navigation system (Comand Online with 12.3-inch screen is standard on E 400 4MATIC); split folding rear seats; Active Brake Assist; steering wheel-mounted touchpads; Artico and Dinamica upholstery and heated front seats.
The Premium equipment line is optionally available for £2,795 and includes Memory package; panoramic sunroof; and Keyless Go comfort package. The Premium Plus equipment line (£3,895) adds Multibeam LED intelligent light system and Burmester surround sound system.
The Lane Tracking package is available for £595 and includes Blind Spot Assist and Active Lane Keeping Assist.
The £1,695 Driving Assistance package includes Drive Pilot; Active Brake Assist with cross-traffic function; Evasive Steering Assist; and Pre-Safe Plus. Drive Pilot includes Steering Pilot; Active Lane Change Assist; Active Emergency Stop Assist; Distance Pilot Distronic; and Speed Limit Pilot (in conjunction with Comand Online).
Comand Online is available for £1,495 (standard on E 400 4MATIC) and adds a 12.3-inch infotainment screen. When combined with the £495 12.3-inch cockpit display, this creates a widescreen cabin effect. Air Body Control air suspension is available for £1,495 (standard on E 400 4MATIC).
In conjunction with the Premium or Premium Plus packages and the 360° camera, customers can also opt for Remote Parking Pilot which allows the vehicle to be parked using a smart phone. To activate Remote Parking Pilot, an £89 subscription (valid for three years) must be purchased from the Mercedes Connect me store.

USA - Toyota recalls certain 2017 Model Year GT86 cars for key Interlock issues.

Toyota Motor North America, Inc., announced that it is conducting a safety recall of certain Model Year 2017 Toyota 86 vehicles in the U.S.  Ninety-four vehicles are involved.

In the involved vehicles, connectors for the automatic transmission key interlock may not have been connected during pre-delivery service prior to sale.  

If this was not connected, it is possible to remove the key in gear positions other than “Park.”  This could increase the risk of vehicle rollaway and a crash.  Models with a key fob and ignition button are not affected.
All known owners of the involved vehicles will be notified by first class mail starting in January and instructed to return the vehicle to a Toyota dealer to have the ignition key interlock function confirmed, and if necessary, the delivery mode connector will be connected at no charge. 
Information about automotive recalls, including but not limited to the list of involved vehicles, is subject to change over time.  

For the most up-to-date Safety Recall information on Lexus, Toyota and Scion customers should check their vehicle’s status by visiting http://www.toyota.com/recall and entering the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN).  Safety Recall inquiry by individual VIN is also available at the NHTSA site: safercar.gov/vin.  

For any additional questions, customer support is also available by calling Toyota Customer Service at 1-800-331-4331 or Lexus Customer Service at 1-800-255-3987.

The world’s most successful business saloon is now also available as a plug-in hybrid.

  • The world’s most successful business saloon is now also available as a plug-in hybrid.
  • Lithium-Ion high voltage battery with a capacity of 9.2kWh.
  • Most efficient BMW 5 Series ever at 46g/km of C02.
  • Pure electric range of 29 miles. • Available to order from mid-January, OTR prices start from £43,985.
In March 2017, a plug-in hybrid variant of the all new BMW 5 Series will complete the 5 Series range. Featuring technology derived directly from the BMW i brand, the BMW 530e iPerformance Saloon offers a dynamic driving experience with exceptionally efficient performance as well as all-electric mobility with zero tailpipe emissions, as and when required.

The intelligently controlled interaction between the combustion engine and the electric drive, which together generate a total system output of 252hp, gives the BMW 530e Saloon rapid acceleration while offering a substantial reduction in fuel consumption and emissions. The BMW 530e achieves combined fuel consumption of 141.2mpg, and a combined electricity consumption of 9.2kWh with CO2 emissions of just 46g/km.

Power delivery on a par with a high-displacement combustion engine.
The BMW eDrive system’s state-of-the-art electric motor has an output of 95hp and maximum torque of 250Nm, while the four-cylinder combustion engine with its 2.0-litre displacement generates 184hp and 320Nm of torque. The overall system output of 252hp and combined peak torque of 420Nm allows the BMW 530e to sprint from zero to 62mph in 6.2 seconds and enable it to reach a top speed of 146mph while CO2 emissions of the BMW 530e are just 46g/km.

The BMW 530e iPerformance has a range of nearly 400 miles in real-world driving and is capable of covering distances of up to 29 miles using purely electric power at a maximum speed of 87mph. The electric motor and combustion engine direct their power to the saloon’s rear wheels via the standard eight-speed Steptronic transmission. Positioning the electric motor upstream from the transmission allows the transmission’s ratios to be used in all-electric mode too. This dispenses with the need for a torque converter, reducing the overall weight of the vehicle.

The high-voltage battery pack, consisting of lithium-ion cells with a total capacity of 9.2kWh, has been placed in a space-saving location underneath the rear seat and includes efficient refrigerant cooling with a highly integrated low-temperature circuit. Thanks to the battery’s neat installation, the BMW 530e Saloon offers 410 litres of boot capacity and a flat load compartment floor. The high-voltage battery of the BMW 530e Saloon can be fully charged in under five hours from a standard domestic power socket and in under three hours if it is hooked up to a BMW i Wallbox (3.7 kW charging capacity).

0 – 62mph
Top Speed
CO2 Emissions g/kmOTR Price
Engine: 184
Electric: 95
Total: 252
Engine: 320
Electric: 250
Total: 420
6.2155**141.2 *46*£43,985
* Figures are provisional, based on the EU test cycle and may vary depending on the tyre format specified.
** Electronically limited.

SEAT surprises some school children on a recent visit to one of their production facilities.

  • It's Christmas at SEAT for children from a school in Barcelona who receive presents along the assembly line
  • Students visiting the carmaker's factory find out about the manufacturing process of a vehicle
The SEAT factory in Martorell, where more than 2,000 vehicles are produced every day, had presents coming off the assembly line for the first time, just days before the arrival of the Christmas holidays. 
On the occasion of a school visit to the plant, the carmaker had a surprise in store for the 28 visiting students from the Marillac school in Barcelona while they got a close look at the manufacturing process of a vehicle. 

At each stage of the visit, presents randomly appeared on several sections of the production line, the robot stations, smart utility vehicles, and some were even hand delivered by the company’s own employees.
“It looks like Santa was here last night!” the children were heard saying as they found new presents among the various car parts along the assembly line until they reached the final station, where a SEAT Leon was waiting for them filled with educational toys based on science and technology for everyone.
This initiative is part of SEAT’s commitment to young talent and educational projects, which is reflected in the nearly 60 years of existence of the company’s Apprentice School, a vocational training centre whose key to success is the completion of training courses in a real-world environment. 

185 young hopefuls are currently learning and studying there with the option of later becoming a part of the company’s workforce.

The SEAT factory in Martorell has the highest output in Spain. Last year a total of 477,000 units were produced here and later distributed to the more than 75 countries where the Spanish brand markets its vehicles. 

SEAT is the only company that designs, develops, manufactures and markets cars in Spain. A member of the Volkswagen Group, the multinational has its headquarters in Martorell (Barcelona), exporting more than 80% of its vehicles, and is present in over 75 countries. 
In 2015, SEAT’s turnover amounted to over 8.3 billion euros, the highest in its history, and the company achieved worldwide sales of more than 400,000 units for the first time since 2007.
SEAT Group employs more than 14,000 professionals at its three production centres – Barcelona, El Prat de Llobregat and Martorell, where it manufactures the highly successful Ibiza and Leon. Additionally, the company produces the Ateca and the Toledo in the Czech Republic, the Alhambra in Portugal and the Mii in Slovakia. 
The multinational has a Technical Centre, which operates as a knowledge hub that brings together 1,000 engineers who are focussed on developing innovation for Spain’s largest industrial investor in R&D. 
SEAT already features the latest connectivity technology in its vehicle range and is currently engaged in the company’s global digitisation process to promote the mobility of the future.

Lifepaint, the reflective spray paint is back on sale with the collaboration of Volvo Car UK.

  • LifePaint safety spray reintroduced to coincide with longest night
  • Ingenious reflective coating is designed to make cyclists more visible at night
  • Available to buy online for the first time, priced at £13
Volvo Car UK has reintroduced LifePaint, the hugely popular reflective spray designed to increase the visibility and safety of cyclists.
Available to buy online in time for the longest night, Wednesday 21 December, LifePaint is an innovative product that reacts to a vehicle’s headlights, warning drivers of the presence of cyclists in the dark. 
With more than 19,000 cyclists injured on the UK’s roads every year, the long dark nights are the perfect time to reintroduce this potentially life-saving safety product.

LifePaint is invisible in daylight, but in the dark reflects light in the same direction as the light source, shining brightly to illuminate the objects it has been sprayed on. The spray sticks to dry textiles and is most effective on fibrous materials such as cotton, fleece, linen and certain nylons. It can also be applied to shoes, helmets, pushchairs and children’s backpacks – and even dog leads and collars.
Volvo is working in partnership with the makers of LifePaint, Swedish start-up Albedo100, to distribute the product online and via its dealer network.
Volvo is already a market leader in terms of protecting all road users – including cyclists. Its range-topping 90 series models all come with City Safety, which detects pedestrians, cyclists and large animals in the path of the car and can automatically apply the brakes in an emergency to help avoid a collision. This technology works day or night and is fitted as standard to the S90 premium saloon, V90 estate, V90 Cross Country all-road car and the XC90 SUV. Volvo is also the only car manufacturer that has automatic emergency braking (AEB) as standard across its full product range.
Jon Wakefield, Managing Director of Volvo Car UK, said: “LifePaint is another example of Volvo’s human-centric approach to safety. Not only are we a world leader in safety technology for our cars, by offering this innovative spray online, we’re helping to protect more people on our roads than ever – whether they drive a Volvo or not.”
The reintroduction of LifePaint is being supported by an on-street advertising campaign, which includes 183 digital six-sheet sites on some of the most dangerous roads in and around London.
LifePaint is available now in participating Volvo dealers and, for the first time, online.

Bentley opens another dealership in Switzerland, this time, north west of Lausanne.

  • New Bentley retail partner in Lausanne
  • Showroom features Bentley corporate identity
  • Created with the same luxurious materials and hand-crafted with the same attention to detail as Bentley cars
Bentley Motors today announces the opening of a brand new showroom in Switzerland.
Located in the north-west of Lausanne, the Bentley showroom measures 400 m² and reflects Bentley’s global corporate identity, taking inspiration from the company’s rich history and combining it with modern-day luxury retailing. Bentley Lausanne is the sixth retailer for Bentley Motors in Switzerland.

Robert Engstler, Regional Director at Bentley Motors Europe, said: “Switzerland is our biggest market in the central European region. We have found a strong partner in Bentley Lausanne and the opening of the brand-new showroom will help us to generate more growth and enlarge our customer base in Switzerland even further.”
Marcel Hauselmann, Bentley Lausanne General Manager, commented: “We are very proud to represent the most successful automotive luxury brand in the world. In our showroom, customers will receive an exclusive Bentley experience and personalised service while surrounded by unparalleled design, automotive passion and unmatched attention to detail.”   

The new showroom in Lausanne offers customers the complete Bentley model range, including Bentley’s latest model, the Bentayga Diesel, the fastest, most luxurious and most exclusive diesel SUV in the world. In addition to the Bentayga range, customers can also choose between the Continental GT, the Flying Spur and Bentley’s flagship model, the Mulsanne.

The new retail partner also offers pre-owned vehicles, aftersales service and the company’s branded luxury goods.