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BMW Concept Compact Sedan unveiled at Auto Guangzhou 2015

The BMW Group unveiled its BMW Concept Compact Sedan at the Auto Guangzhou 2015. BMW Concept Compact Sedan represents the German carmaker's vision of a four-door sedan for the compact segment.

According to Adrian van Hooydonk, Senior Vice President BMW Group Design, the concept features generous space for the driver and passengers as well as a level of luxury typically seen only in large BMW sedans.

Likewise, the BMW Concept Compact Sedan is as sporty as any other BMW vehicles. He noted that the quality and intrinsic value of this concept indicate BMW's premium intentions for the car. The BMW Concept Compact Sedan was developed using data from in-depth observation of and research in the Chinese premium compact market, which has been showing an enormous potential for further growth.

Read the entire article BMW Concept Compact Sedan unveiled at Auto Guangzhou 2015

Mercedes-Benz adds third shift at Hungary plant to meet demand for compact cars

Mercedes-Benz is adding a third shift at its Kecskemet site in Hungary to continue catering to with growing demand for its compact cars. The extra shift at the Kecskemet site will start in May, Daimler said in a statement. The Kecskemet site builds the B class and CLA models. It will continue to build on selected Saturdays this after adding work on the weekend in 2013.

"Our production has hardly kept up with the dynamic sales development of our compacts," chief executive Dieter Zetsche said in the statement. "This allows us to serve the wishes of our customers around the world even better and timelier." The extra shift in Kecskemet follows other moves by Mercedes to increase output of entry-level vehicles.

In October 2012, Mercedes added a third shift to its Rastatt site in Germany that builds the A-class hatchback, the GLA compact SUV and the B class. Valmet Automotive Inc. started building the A class for Mercedes in 2013 under a contract to assemble more than 100,000 units through 2016.

Read the entire article Mercedes-Benz adds third shift at Hungary plant to meet demand for compact cars

Toyota to bring 8 compact car models tailored for emerging markets by 2015

Toyota Motor Corp. will introduce eight compact vehicle models made specifically for emerging markets by 2015 in its effort to catch up with leading rivals General Motors Co., and Volkswagen Group, the company confirmed. Last year, Toyota lost its top spot as the bestselling brand in the world. Now, it is seeking to lower its dependence on the mature markets, specifically in Japan, North America and Europe.

Instead, it intends to focus more on emerging markets like India, Brazil and China, where rivals Hyundai Motor Co., GM and Volkswagen have taken the lead. The Japanese automaker is targeting to sell 50% of its automobiles in emerging markets by 2015, an increase from around 45% in 2011 % and 18.6% in 2000.

Yukitoshi Funo, vice president at Toyota, related that there are four or five vehicle manufacturers competing for the lead in terms of sales volumes in the emerging markets.  In addition to the Etios model launched in India in December 2010, Toyota intends to bring eight compact cars by 2015 with a combined annual sales target of at least 1 million automobiles in more than 100 countries during that period.

Read the entire article Toyota to bring 8 compact car models tailored for emerging markets by 2015

Magna Steyr will build Infiniti’s new premium compact car

Japanese carmaker Nissan said that beginning in 2014, Austrian contract manufacturer Magna Steyr will produce a new premium compact car for its Infiniti brand. Through a statement, Infiniti chief Andy Palmer said that the car will help the brand reach new consumers and expand in key markets like western Europe. Nissan didn’t offer further information on the car or say if it will be sold in markets outside Europe like in the United States.

Last December, sources told Automotive News Europe that Nissan hopes to release the entry-level car globally to help get a 10-percent share of the global luxury market. Previously, Infiniti executives said that the entry-level model will go up against premium compact cars like the Audi A3 and Mercedes-Benz A class.

It is believed that the car will be based on Mercedes's MFA compact platform that is used for the new A- and B-class cars. In 2010, Renault-Nissan and Mercedes parent Daimler revealed a strategic cooperation between the two companies. A report from Automotive News Europe last December also said that Daimler will supply numerous preassembled "complete parts" to Infiniti. Back then, sources said that around 50,000 to 60,000 units annually of the Infiniti could be produced in Graz.

Read the entire article Magna Steyr will build Infiniti’s new premium compact car

At the upcoming Detroit Auto Show in January next year, Dodge’s new 2013 compact car will be introduced. There’s plenty of excitement since this is the very first all-new car designed that the combined Chrysler and Fiat Company have designed. There’s actually very little is known about this car. There have been neither leaks nor official statements about the car. But it’s speculated that it may be named the Dodge Hornet.

It’s also believed that this new compact will be the replacement for the aging Caliber hatchback. This suggests that the car will be going up against formidable rivals like Toyota Corolla, Honda Civic, Ford Focus, and Hyundai Elantra. The Dodge compact is built on a modified C-Evo chassis shared with the Alfa Romeo Giulietta. Its powerplants are also shared with Fiat.

The Dodge compact will be slightly wider than the European version so that it could accommodate the safety equipment required for U.S. vehicles. Other dimensions will be identical though.

Read the entire article New Dodge compact car coming to the 2012 Detroit Auto Show

Small electric vehicles will be presented by Hyundai in the second half of 2015 while Kia will do so in the first half of 2014. Hyundai revealed these plans at the ‘Green Car Symposium’ hosted by the Korea Automobile Journalist Association (KAJA) when it presented ‘Hyundai’s Green Car Global Leading Strategy.” In 2010, Hyundai launched the BlueOn, its first highway legal full speed electric vehicle design.

This compact electric car is based on the i10 hatchback design and it can be driven for around 87 miles (140 kilometers) on a single charge. Kia is also preparing to launch its electric car named TAM later this year.

More than 2,000 units are expected to be produced by the end of 2012. The automaker added that its focus had been on small-sized electric models, with its high cost and limited battery technologies. But it believes that as the green-car market becomes mature and the battery technology improves, the compact-size electric vehicle models may go mainstream.

Read the entire article Hyundai to introduce compact electric vehicles in 2015! Kia EVs coming in 2014!

Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn said that Infiniti is planning to develop a compact car that will be based on a small-car platform from Mercedes-Benz. Ghosn told reporters at the Frankfurt Motor Show that this new model is the product of the expanded cooperation between Daimler and the Renault-Nissan alliance.

There are rumors that this car will be produced in Europe where it will rival the Audi A3 and BMW 1 series. However, Nissan has yet to address these rumors.

In an Bloomberg interview, Nissan executive vice president Andy Palmer said that there’s no rule that production of Infiniti cars is only done in Japan.

Read the entire article Infiniti to build a compact car based on a small-car platform from Mercedes-Benz

For the U.S. market in the next three years, Mercedes-Benz will launch coupe and SUV versions of its new compact car family. The carmaker is considering offering a third variant, which could either be a convertible or a shooting brake, aimed at the younger consumers.

In an interview with Automotive News Europe, Joachim Schmidt, Mercedes' global sales and marketing boss, said that the company has in development at least four models based on its new Mercedes Front-wheel-drive Architecture (MFA).

Schmidt said that Mercedes-Benz is prepared to introduce the next generation of the MFA family to the U.S. and that there would be two or three variants.

Read the entire article Mercedes-Benz to launch coupe, SUV versions of new compact car in the U.S.

With the rising prices of fuel, compact car sales are also expected to increase in 2011. Last week, the average gasoline price in the United States reached $2.98 a gallon. It appears that automakers have anticipated the demand.

The new 2011 Chevrolet Cruze and the redesigned 2011 Hyundai Elantra are on sale now. Meanwhile, the redesigned 2012 Ford Focus and redesigned 2012 Honda Civic will go on sale next spring. These entries are vital to automakers' new car sales, which rose by 6 percent through November 2010 while the overall market improved by 11 percent.

For the first 11 months of 2010, Honda sold 231,955 Civics, a 2 percent drop when compared to the same period in 2009. Ford’s sales were up 9 percent to 159,679 Focus units. And Hyundai sold 119,150 Elantras, 22 percent higher than sales in 2009.

Read the entire article Compact car sales to experience surge in 2011, due to higher gasoline prices

It’s not a secret anymore that a V8-powered rear-wheel-drive sports car to replace the NSX was dropped, but there are some good news for Acura fans, as the manufacturer may return to two segments that it had abandoned by adding a compact car and a coupe.

The new Acura compact car will be based on the next-generation Honda Civic which will be introduced in 2012. This means that the new compact car will be seen in 2013.

This segment was abandoned by Acura back in 2006, when the RSX was axed. Regarding the new coupe, Acura is considering to re-enter the market with a car based on the TSX platform, shared with the European version of the Honda Accord.

Read the entire article Acura may return to two segments by adding a compact car and a coupe

It will not, however, probably launch a model lower than IS250 in the US, but this does not imply that it will not design a fresh entry-level vehicle for other outlets. One clear possibility is Europe, where high-rated hatchbacks can be sold in substantial numbers.

Lexus is unlikely to launch a model positioned below the IS250 in the United States but that doesn't mean it won't develop a new entry-level car for other markets.

One possibility is Europe, where premium hatchbacks sell in substantial numbers. A vehicle model just under the current IS is due for launch, according to Tokuichi Uranishi, the carmaker's executive vice president, to enable the carmaker to reach an internal objective of 150,000 unit sales in Europe by the year 2015.

Read the entire article Next compact Lexus to feature hybrid option

Fiat S.p.A. has a new Compact vehicle architecture that will soon underpin 700,000 Chrysler group vehicles annually in the US. and 300,000 in Europe by 2014.

This architecture will be seen first in Europe at the Geneva Motor Show next month on the new Alfa Romeo Giulietta sporty hatchback. Fiat and Chrysler are working together to create a widened version of the architecture, called Compact Wide.

This is intended to underpin at least seven new models for the Chrysler, Dodge and Jeep brands. The Compact Wide architecture will be seen on Chrysler group cars, two compact sedans that will replace the Chrysler PT Cruiser and the Dodge Caliber in 2012.

Read the entire article Fiat’s new compact vehicle platform to underpin 1 million cars a year

Infiniti is entering the premium small car market that has previously been penetrated by rival Lexus. Of course this market continues to be dominated by the Audi A3 and BMW 1-Series. Meanwhile, it is predicted that sales of compact hatchbacks from upmarket brands will take away somewhat from those of larger saloons such as the Audi A4 and BMW 3 Series in 2010. 

Toru Saito, the head of Infiniti, said that the company is aware of the downsizing trend and that it is considering the smaller car category. At the start of next year, Lexus will enter the small hatch class with the hybrid CT 200h.

Infiniti, the premium car arm of Nissan, has revealed plans to produce a small all-electric car, which is likely to be based on the underpinnings of the Nissan Leaf. However, a conventional-engined small Infiniti is probable as well.

Read the entire article More details about Infiniti’s compact electric vehicle

Nissan Motor Co. has ambitious goals for its first hybrid car. It has set a goal to nearly double its mileage compared to the gasoline engine version. It also aims to cut costs using a simple, single-motor system.

Later this year, Nissan is expected to launch the Fuga, a gasoline-electric Infiniti M sedan, in Japan. It lags behind its strongest rivals (Toyota Motor and Honda Motor) by over a decade in producing a proprietary hybrid model.

Despite the late start, Nissan claims that its one-motor, two-clutch system results to a much better fuel economy and with much lower technical cost compared with Toyota's complex, two-motor "series parallel" system.

Read the entire article Infiniti M Hybrid will have mileage comparable to that of a compact car, says Nissan

Vw revealed today its New Compact Coupe (NCC), a new car which will make its Detroit Auto Show debut later today. Ok, so what is this car exactly? According to the manufacturer it is a full hybrid car, powered by a four-cylinder version of the TSI gasoline enginecapable to deliver 100 kW/150 hp and also by an electric motor delivering 20 kW / 27 hp.

Mated to a 7-speed Direct Shift Gearbox (DSG), the new car can sprint from 0 to 100 km/h in just 8.6 seconds and achieves a top speed of 227 km/h (141 mph). Volkswagen New Compact Coupe (NCC) delivers an impressive fuel consumption of just 4.2 liters/100 km or 45 mpg.

Regarding the design, the NCC Concept shows an extremely confident and focused expression, a new Tungsten Silver Metallic paint finish emphasized by the horizontal line styling with integrated Bi-Xenon headlights – including LED daytime running and turn signal lights.

Read the entire article 2010 Detroit Auto Show: Vw New Compact Coupe (NCC)

Citroën is expanding its compact vehicle range with C-Zero, a car that is the 100% electric solution with zero CO2 emissions, zero fuel consumption, and zero noise. Having a compact dimension, fast charge, and enough range for daily travels, the C-Zero was designed to make mobility in the city easier. In addition to all these features, it also offers silence that allows both the driver and passengers to forget urban noise.

The C-Zero is indeed a mix of creativity and technology that is able to meet the challenges of tomorrow today. With the experience to be the market leader in its segment, Citroën expects to grow even further and has manufactured almost 6,000 electric cars. The C-Zero was developed in partnership with Mitsubishi Motors Corporation and was launched towards the end of 2010. This is Citroën’s second electric car after the Berlingo First Electric which was developed through collaboration with Venturi.

These two models are eligible for a government bonus in France for as much as 5,000 euros. Being foremost as an environmental carmaker, Citroën has a long standing policy of reducing not just fuel consumption but the emission of greenhouse gases as well.

Read the entire article Citroën expands compact vehicle selection with the C-Zero