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Bosch showcased its latest hybrid technology at the RAC Future Car Challenge

A Mercedes-Benz E 300 BlueTEC HYBRID took part in the RAC Future Car Challenge on November 3. This vehicle, which uses Bosch’s latest hybrid technology, was driven by Peter Fouquet, the Bosch UK president. Bosch supplies the synchronous motor for the luxury hybrid’s advanced drivetrain, which mainly serves to cut emissions at lower speeds.

The motor offers 184lb ft of torque from zero, enabling the E 300 BlueTEC HYBRID to be driven smoothly and flawlessly. The motor is powered by a four-cylinder diesel engine and allows the engine to turn off and enter a ‘coasting’ mode when the foot gets off the throttle, which helps in saving fuel at speeds up to 100mph.

Bosch and Daimler’s EM-motive joint venture built this motor. The JV develops and builds electric motors at its plant in Hildesheim, Germany. It aims to make over a million electric motors by 2020. The E 300 BlueTEC HYBRID is the most fuel-efficient car in its class, with 109g/km of CO2 emissions and a combined average fuel economy of 67.3mpg.

Read the entire article Bosch showcased its latest hybrid technology at the RAC Future Car Challenge

Bosch and Samsung SDI to supply lithium-ion battery cells for Bmw

BMW Group revealed that it has chosen SB LiMotive to supply it with battery cells for its Megacity Vehicle project. Because of this, BMW Group now has access to the latest in lithium-ion storage technology.

BMW AG’s Chairman of the Board of Management Norbert Reithofer explains that this choice is an important milestone in its goal to have the Megacity Vehicle under serial production. The most important part of an electric vehicle is the battery as it ultimately determines the performance of the vehicle and how far it will run.

By choosing SB LiMotive, he adds, the company has a supplier that offers the best technology in this area as it combines Korean battery know-how with German automotive expertise. This is because SB LiMotive is a 50:50 joint venture between Samsung SDI and Bosch.

Read the entire article Bosch and Samsung SDI to supply lithium-ion battery cells for Bmw

Take a peek at BMW’s next-gen digital instrument cluster

Amid the excitement surrounding the launch of the BMW M2 Competition, many BMW enthusiasts have also been talking about the upcoming Operating System 7.0 that the automaker recently previewed. For now, here’s a glimpse at the updated fully digital instrument cluster that will soon be equipped in future production cars.

There is also a high likelihood that the new digital driver display will first be seen in high end models like that of the 7 Series facelift, 8 Series Coupe & Convertible, as well as the X7, and later on will be installed in lesser cars of BMW’s expansive range.

Now, the new BMW Operating System 7.0, as part of the iDrive infotainment system, will be getting a new display that can show the navigation map alongside individually selected content based on the driver’s preferences. It is purely digital and highly sophisticated.

Read the entire article Take a peek at BMW’s next-gen digital instrument cluster

Bugatti’s telemetry tech remotely monitors your Chiron anywhere in the world

Back in 2004, Bugatti first introduced to us the telemetry system on its road-going production model. This tech debuted with the Veyron, making it the very first in the industry to utilize this kind of system. Now, if you own a Chiron, then you can also benefit from this. So in case you get a flat tire or any such issue, you will be alerted by Bugatti’s “flying doctors” about the specific problem you are currently having in real time.

The telemetry system, if you didn’t know, got its inspiration from Formula 1 and DTM race cars. It relies mostly on mobile radio to monitor the condition of a Veyron and Chiron, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. And the only time that telemetry won’t be able to monitor your car is when there is no mobile phone network coverage. Around 14 years after this technology was introduced, it has been greatly improved, and now can monitor 10,000 signals in the case of the more high tech Bugatti Chiron.

What the telemetry focuses on in each of these cars would be the key components such as the 8.0 liter quad turbo engine, the seven speed dual clutch automatic gearbox, and even hardware such as the infotainment system and air conditioning. As mentioned earlier, Bugatti has three “flying doctors” that are in charge of the Chirons and Veyrons. One of them is focused on Europe and Russia, the other one in Middle East and Asia Pacific, and one is in charge of North America.

Read the entire article Bugatti’s telemetry tech remotely monitors your Chiron anywhere in the world

The Mercedes-Maybach S-Class has been known to be more than just luxurious as it is also prestigious and exclusive. Now, the Mercedes-Maybach S-Class has been updated to feature a distinct and revolutionary lighting technology, as unveiled to the global public at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show.

Image projection is not a new concept in cars. So-called heads up display (HUD) uses light to project images onto the windshield just in front of the driver. The projected image by the HUD system features various information considered as relevant to the functions of the vehicle. This lighting concept is taken into another level by the groundbreaking revolutionary headlamp technology Digital Light. While other headlamps just illuminate the road ahead, Digital Light also projects certain symbols – in HD quality -- directly in the field of vision, serving as a visual aid to the driver of a Mercedes-Maybach S-Class. Likewise, the projected symbols serve as communication with the surroundings.

This marks the first time that Digital Light is employed in the Mercedes-Maybach S-Class. Digital Light will be soon entering small series production in the Mercedes-Maybach S-Class, with only a select few of its fleet customers taking delivery of the symbol-project luxurious flagship in the first half of 2018.

Read the entire article Updated Mercedes-Maybach S-Class can project driving aid symbols onto the road ahead

We all know that Volvo has a lot of things planned for their future. In fact, the Swedish automaker is going to reveal the next generation S60 this summer, and apart from that, they are planning to come out with a Cross Country version of the V60. In general, they will develop more powerful and efficient hybrid powertrains, while they transition to purely electric power.

This does not surprise us though. Instead, what comes as a surprise to us is the fact that Volvo’s current generation of turbocharged internal combustion engine is the last of its kind. It was Hakan Sameulsson, the brand’s CEO, who revealed this information the same time they presented the new V60 wagon in Stockholm, Sweden.

This statement may be shocking to most of you, but it will take quite some time for Volvo to completely get rid of their gas engine – in around seven years perhaps. Also, there will be a new generation of the SPA architecture that they have planned for 2021, but it will continue to use the current generation ICEs albeit heavily modified.

Read the entire article Volvo will not develop more combustion engines amid focus on electric power

In today’s world, it is not unusual to have smart phones or other electronics that could recognize their owner’s faces. Actually, in the near future, it will likely be a standard feature in all personal gadgets. Having said that, even the automotive industry is looking into this technology - how cool is that?

We applaud Volkswagen for developing this idea and eventually offering it in its vehicles. We could certainly all benefit from using sophisticated forms of autonomous technology on the road. In fact, VW has recently announced a new partnership with Nvidia. At the 2018 CES, the automaker talked about the next-generation technology on the upcoming I.D. Buzz concept. The automaker believes that this van is the perfect model for showcasing the technologies it has been working on.

Jensen Huang, CEO of Nvidia, said during the announcement of the partnership that after a few years, most, if not all, vehicles will have AI assistants for voice, gesture, and facial recognition, along with augmented reality. He then said that by working with Volkswagen, they are beginning to create a generation of safer and more enjoyable vehicles that will soon be accessible to everyone, something that they have not seen before.

Read the entire article Upcoming VW Buzz will use facial recognition tech

The rivalry among automakers to create the most sophisticated and intuitive vehicle interior is at an all-time high. But there’s one name that stood out at CES. Technology company Harman, a subsidiary of Samsung, has shown us what the future could be. At the 2018 CES event, Harman launched its new Digital Cockpit Concept. It has certainly caught a lot of attention with its superb execution.

Firstly, Harman decided to lose the standard central infotainment screen that you see in most vehicles today. And to replace that, they added a massive, retractable display that stretches from the center of the dashboard, all the way to the passenger door instead. While this isn’t the first time for this kind of design to be unveiled, it is by far the best that we’ve seen. It comes with a huge QLED screen that gives both the driver and the passenger access to control it, choose options, and customize it to how they personally want it. Passengers of this car will never be bored.

What makes it even more practical is the fact that two people can simultaneously use the single screen. In other words, the passenger can use it to play games, browse through the internet, or stream videos, at the same time the driver utilizes the navigation information or music. As for the design, it may look like one massive QLED screen in the centerpiece, but it is actually made of a number of smaller OLED screens that can barely be distinguished throughout the cabin.

Read the entire article Harman Digital Cockpit displayed at 2018 CES could be the future of luxury cars

One thing that more car buyers look for is a panoramic sunroof. So naturally, automakers aim to give its customers what they want. Nevertheless, safety is a pertinent issue that has to be addressed. This is why Hyundai is making sure to answer all safety concerns regarding the glass sunroofs. Hyundai has developed a panoramic sunroof airbag, which they claim to be the first ever in the industry.

So how does this work? Well, the South Korean automaker installed the airbag inside the sunroof mechanism of the tempered glass roof. The airbag gets activated when the car’s on-board sensor detects the vehicle about to roll over when it crashes. In around 0.08 of a second, the airbag can be deployed from the front to the rear of the car, covering the entire roof surface. Now that is indeed a first.

If in any case the car rolls over, the sunroof airbag will prevent passengers from spilling out of the car. This reduces their risk of getting serious injuries.

Read the entire article Hyundai presents first-ever panoramic sunroof airbag

Just as we are on the verge of entering the autonomous driving future, some car manufacturers are trying to hold on to the most precious things from the present, one of which is keeping the steering wheel on their vehicles. This thought comes most especially as we go about the time when the use of autonomous driving technology will become a mandatory obligation instead of a choice.

The first in line to make such a bold statement was Lamborghini, affirming that they will be the last automotive brand in the world to offer an autonomous driving vehicle. But then, a member of Volkswagen Group must have caught wind of what Lamborghini has said about driverless technology and declared too that Porsche will be one of the last to offer vehicles with a steering wheel.

Published on Porsche media website, Lutz Meschke has stated that the company will always offer a car that you want to be able to drive on your own and that they will be among the last cars that come with a steering wheel.

Read the entire article Porsche will offer owner-driven cars as long as it’s legally possible amid inevitability of self-driving systems

Following the Tesla Roadster’s electrifying revelation on Thursday, Musk’s highly ambitious goals have skyrocketed when he tweeted about his future plans for the new sports car. Well, kind of.

The now controversial tweet, which was published on the 20th of November hints at the possibilities of enabling the 2nd generation Roadster to “fly short hops”. Does that mean the new Tesla Roadster could actually fly? We don’t know the answer. But according to Tesla’s CEO, the new Roadster’s special option package could take it “to the next level” while explaining how rocket technologies could open up ground-breaking possibilities if applied to a car. While he admitted flying is “certainly possible”, Musk at least is well aware of its threat to safety.

Let’s just say Elon Musk is simply having one of those “it’s not rocket science” episodes where he tends to dream big and doesn’t hold back when he wants the whole world to know all about it. And it doesn’t need a rocket scientist to figure this out either. The “flight” option could only mean that the new Roadster could take off faster than 1.9 seconds or maybe go beyond what the entry level Roadster now has to offer.

Read the entire article Elon Musk might use rocket tech on new Tesla Roadster

Does your vehicle’s sunroof come with an airbag? This may be the first time you’ve ever heard that such a thing actually does exist. Since safety often tops the priority list of all car manufacturers, automotive parts suppliers are relentlessly seeking new innovations to offer to their clients.

Enter Hyundai Mobis, which brings to us what is now known as the very first airbag for your car’s panoramic sunroof. This may take a long while to be seen everywhere as the company will be focusing on premium SUVs at the moment. If eventually this becomes available worldwide, we believe these special airbags will further raise our standards for safety.

But why place it over your head? Well, its main concern is to prevent occupants from being ejected out of the vehicle’s panoramic sunroof in case of a rollover accident. At the time of an emergency, the sunroof airbag can deploy in as quick as 0.08 second which is pretty similar to what the side-curtain airbags on most vehicles accomplish. Hyundai Mobis’ patented technology will work whether the sunroof is closed or open to keep passengers safe no matter what. Imagine an airbag that goes down from the back and moves forward to cover the entire panoramic glass roof. That’s how it works.

Read the entire article Hyundai Mobis develops first-ever sunroof airbags

Just last year, Cruise Automation was acquired by General Motors, and today, it is the self-driving startup that is gobbling up companies on its own. General Motors is stepping their game up once more. To make things easier for them when it comes to the development of autonomous cars, they decided to acquire California-based Strobe, Inc. Not a lot of you may have heard of this company, but Strobe specializes in LiDAR technology, and that is a huge step forward for companies who are into autonomous systems for automobiles. After the acquisition, Strobe engineers will become part of the automaker’s Cruise Automation team.

Julie Schoenfeld, Founder and CEO of Strobe, Inc., said in a statement that the successful deployment of self-driving vehicles will have to depend on the availability of LiDAR sensors. Furthermore, GM and Cruise will benefit from Strobe’s deep engineering talent and technology backed by a number of patents. And hopefully, the automaker brings these autonomous vehicles sooner than we would think.

LiDAR is different from radar systems because the former uses laser pulses to “see” an area, whereas the latter relies on radar systems to do the same thing. And the LiDAR, as we know, is much more detailed as it creates a better picture of its surroundings, which translates to a more accurate processing of information. In other words, the LiDAR system can see a more realistic picture of what’s around it - from cars, pedestrians, and the road. Therefore, the LiDAR systems will play a pivotal role in the current and future development of autonomous cars. However, radars and LiDARs can complement each other to create a more robust and fault-tolerant sensing suite, operating in a wide range of environmental and lighting conditions.

Read the entire article GM gets closer to producing fully autonomous vehicles with acquisition of Strobe Inc.

It seems Japanese carmaker Mazda Motor Corp. has found a new way to implement a rear spoiler on its vehicles. In fact, Mazda has filed two patents – with the United States Patent & Trademark Office -- that would become vital elements of its innovative active rear spoiler.

Carmakers typically try to increase the aerodynamic performance of their vehicles by installing rear spoilers, which are also called rear wings. By spoiling unfavorable air movement over a moving vehicle, a rear spoiler could decrease the so-called aerodynamic turbulence or drag while generating more downforce. These rear spoilers are typically fixed – mounted permanently with an undeviating position – on the rear of the vehicle. Since these are fixed-mounted to the rear of the vehicle, the aesthetics of the model seems compromised from the rear viewpoint.

Nonetheless, there are those so-called active rear spoilers that rise automatically when the vehicle reaches a certain speed, and then settles down to fit flush with the vehicle when the speed goes down to a certain level. This way, the aesthetics of the vehicle would be enhanced, as the rear spoiler could be hidden flush when not really needed.

Read the entire article Mazda patents new type of active rear spoiler with US Patent Office

A lot of people have been wondering what is that on the Genesis G70’s grille. One really would not notice such a thing from afar, but if you get up close and personal, then you would see something planted on the center of its grille.

Well, experts say that this is a front-mounted radar that works with the driver assist system that the G70 features. This new technology features adaptive cruise control, emergency automatic braking, frontal collision warning and such. A number of automakers have this technology installed on the front end of their cars, but so far, not many of them have great results, but we have yet to see how it works on the Genesis G70.

As mentioned earlier, the front-mounted radar has not performed as well as automakers and customers expected it to. For instance, Hyundai, Genesis’ mother company used the same technology for its mid-size Sonata sedan - and this might be the worst mistake they have ever made.

Read the entire article Let’s have a closer look at what’s on the Genesis G70’s grille

If you search for the word "grille" on the dictionary, what you will get is a definition that says "a grating forming a screen or barrier, or an ornamental one found at the front end of the automobile". Depending on who you are talking to, some would say that modern cars can have one or two grilles, one on top of the other.

But if you speak with Porsche, they will say that the grille refers to the upper part, while the lower one is called the air intake. And if there’s only one section then that is an air intake. With that being said, does it mean that all Porsche cars do not have grilles?

During the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show, Road and Track magazine had the chance to speak with Volkswagen's head of design, who is also Porsche's chief designer Michael Mauer. While being interviewed, Mauer dropped a bombshell that was in relation to the grille. He mentioned that all Porsche vehicles only have air intakes, instead of grilles, because there is only one structure. Apparently, if there is only one opening on the car’s face, this automatically becomes the “lower” section, making it an air intake.

Read the entire article Porsche says it never had grilles, just air intakes

The idea of sourcing electricity from solar energy to power and operate vehicles is nothing new. We have seen cars mounted with solar panels, but they don’t seem to look appealing and also appear to be bulky. Likewise, installing solar panels on a car might greatly reduce the vehicle’s aesthetic value. However, integrating solar cells into panoramic glass roofs could be a very good idea.

This is the strategy conceptualized by German premium carmaker Audi and Chinese partner Hanergy Thin Film Power Group Limited, as represented by American subsidiary Alta Devices. The endeavor – dubbed as the Audi/Hanergy Thin Film Solar Cell Research and Development Project -- plans to integrate Alta Devices’ thin-film solar cells into panoramic glass roofs of Audi’s electric vehicles, which mean that these models won't have to sacrifice aesthetics to gain an unlimited source of energy – unlike mounted solar panels. Interestingly, the project plans to cover almost the entire surface of the panoramic roof with solar cells.

Then, the electricity generated by these thin-film solar cells will be sent to the EV’s electrical system. This electricity could power up the vehicle’s air-conditioning system or even its seat heaters. As a result, the EVs become more efficient and experience a considerable increase in its electric range. To note, the integrated thin-film solar cells aren’t meant to fully power the whole vehicle, especially its propulsion system. Instead, the integrated thin-film solar cells are expected to extend the range of Audi’s EV.

Read the entire article Audi partners with Hanergy to integrate thin-film solar cells into glass roof of its EV models

Every year, Mazda gives their cars upgrades in small increments, and customers definitely appreciate the changes that the Mazda3 has gotten. This year, according to Motoring, the company is stepping up its game in terms of combustion engine efficiency with the new powerplant they are releasing - with homogenous charge compression ignition (HCCI). This will be launched in August at a technology conference that will take place in Frankfurt.

HCCI is a gas-powered engine that works like a diesel mill. It compresses the mixture of air and fuel in the cylinder until combustion. Apparently, the Mazda engine (a Skyactiv II engine) will use spark plugs at lower speeds, but when the car goes faster, the powerplant will switch to HCCI.

The company further added that the Skyactiv II engine is going to be more efficient by 30 percent compared to current gasoline-fueled engines. This means that the new Mazda 3 could have a fuel economy of 42 miles per gallon compared to the current 32 mpg combined.

Read the entire article 2018 Mazda3 with sparkless ignition engine technology will make its debut in Frankfurt

Everyone seems to know that the Alfa Romeo Giulia has been recently experiencing problems. Turns out, the blame goes to Giulia’s software. Reid Bigland, big time executive from Alfa Romeo and Maserati, finally responded with an apology after Sam Smith, Road & Track’s editor-at-large published an article bearing the headline “Alfa Romeo Is Its Own Worst Enemy”.

Under the main title, Smith had written “How one of the greatest brands in automotive history might squander what goodwill it has left”. Apparently, the issue began after the media publication’s test car struggled to make it through one lap at the Gingerman Raceway earlier this week.

According to Bigland, the problem was caused by the vehicle’s software, saying that the car was shipped directly from the factory without going through the standard dealer inspection procedure. As a result of this, several software updates must have been missed in the process. If Bigland’s statement is later proven to be correct, then we have found the answer to the malfunctioning engine lights and sunroofs that used to plague Alfa Romeo Giulia in the last two years.

Read the entire article Alfa Romeo exec cites missed software updates in response to bad review of Giulia

Volkswagen AG is taking vehicle-to-vehicle communications another step forward as the German carmaker plans to make pWLAN technology (Public Local Area Network) standard on most of its offerings starting 2019. According to the company, the move will make road travel safer and more efficient.

As intended by VW, pWLAN technology will serve as an additional communication technology – as a complement for mobile phone connectivity -- for exchanging certain traffic information between vehicles, even if produced by different carmakers. Thus, the installation of pWLAN technology should allow VW vehicles to exchange information with other vehicles (car to car), or with transport infrastructure (car to X).

pWLAN technology would allow the quick sharing of information – usually achieved within just milliseconds -- about the present traffic situation, or even accidents as well as other traffic conditions with the local environment, with other vehicles or infrastructure within a radius of around 500 meters. Information about the traffic warnings and even sensor data could also be shared with the local environment. By exchanging such important information, travelling on the road could be much safer as it could help reduce accidents or if such cannot be avoided, minimize their effects.

Read the entire article VW will have pWLAN as standard on most of its vehicles starting 2019