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Land Rover goes green, rolls out Electric Defender

2013-land-rover-defender-all-terrain-electricLand Rover is quite serious with its commitment to going green as it recently rolled out an all electric version of the Defender. Yes, that is the big SUV you are thinking of right now. Well, according to a spokesperson, the all-electric Defender is not yet due for production but is a way for the brand to test the technology.

The electric Defender will be the laboratory on the go of Land Rover as they try to see if ever it will be possible for the off-roading realm to go green. It will be tested in all possible terrains and conditions so they can see if the technologies can be implemented on future models.

The SUV is aptly called Defender All-Terrain Electric and derives its DNA from the latest 2013 version of the Defender. It is engineered to have zero emissions while retaining the innate ruggedness of the vehicle.

The diesel engine and the transmission of the Defender were dropped in favor for a 94-horsepower electric motor. This single motor is dependent of a lithium ion battery pack with a rating of 27 kilowatt hour that gives the vehicle a driving range of at least 50 miles on moderate driving.

When used for your typical low-speed off-roading adventure, the electric Defender can give the driver around 8 hours before needing a recharge. A fast charger can juice up the battery in just four hours while a smaller charger with a lower rating will require 10 hours.

The SUV is about 240 pounds heavier but going to deep fords will never be an issue. The four-wheel drive capabilities and the differential lock of the regular Defender were retained.

Aside from the engine being replaced by the electric motor, the new green Defender only has a single speed. This is so because the max torque is already delivered by the system the moment the engine is started so the driver does not have to shift gears.

The testing of the all-electric Land Rover Defender will take place throughout the year while the vehicle officially takes the spotlight in Geneva this month.

Of course if you are searching for a used one, the best place to find used cars is through the online auction. There you can put online bids on any cars you like. One of the best websites for this purpose is used car bidding website Abetter.bid. You can press the link and search their Land Rover inventory. And if you prefer green cars - they have used Tesla cars.

Posted in Electric Cars, Land Rover
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Mercedes reveals 4MATIC system for FWD vehicles, will debut on the CLA

4MATICThrough the years, the 4MATiC of Mercedes-Benz has been the brand’s designation for its models with all-wheel drive capabilities. These are the likes of the CL- or the C-Class and also the growing SUV portfolio of the brand.

The 4MATIC might be a very common name but Mercedes offers different all-wheel drive systems depending on the vehicle model and the needs of its customers. So what you have on the CLS differs from the AWD system you have in a G-Wagen.

The German car manufacturer has shared the details of its fifth version of the 4MATIC system specifically for its CLA sports saloon and its AMG sibling. This new 4MATIC will be tailored to the new FWD models.

This new all-wheel drive system can only be linked with the semi-automatic 7G-DCT dual-clutch 7speed gearbox. It will use a power take off unit that is integrated with the transmission utilizing the same system of lubrication. This setup result to lesser friction and chops off about 25% of the weight over similar, rival systems.

A clutch with multiple disks that is integrated to the rear axle handles the torque distribution. During normal driving conditions, the clutch is just open and the vehicle is almost a full front-wheel drive in order to have better fuel efficiency.

When the system detects speed differences between the axles, a rotor pump is activated automatically . In a blink, the systems will activate the clutch on the rear and this will shift the torque between the front and rear wheels as needed.

How the torque will be distributed will depend on the selection of the transmission program. You can opt for the ECO mode which makes less torque go to the rear wheels for better fuel efficiency. The SPORT and the MANUAL modes will give you quicker activation times and more torque sent to the rear for a sportier ride. The system used with the CLA 45 AMG will depend on the settings of the ESP.

Posted in Mercedes-Benz
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Mercedes-Benz aims to roll out Mini G-Wagen by 2015

It appears that Mercedes-Benz has all bases covered when it comes to vehicle niches. The car manufacturer even launched a five-door, elongated version of its CLS coupe. When it comes to SUVs, the brand has the GL-Class, the smaller ML, and the GLK for those who want a more compact ride. It will also have the GLA crossover in a few years.

Aside from the models we mentioned, Mercedes-Benz also has the refreshed G-Wagen for consumers who may want something that can rival the Defender from Land Rover in terms of off-road prowess. Someone in Stuttgart may have also toyed with the idea of having a mini version of the G-Wagen. It seemed that the bosses liked the idea, so we heard the project is under consideration.

The mini G has a code name of X156 at the moment. The new model will be the cousin of the GLA or if better description is needed, its mud-lugging, hardcore sister.

Both the GLA and the mini G will use the platform of the A-Class. The GLA though will get the configuration fit for the buyers who want the luxury and great on-road handling. The mini-G is set to be the more squarish and more brute counterpart that will be more capable when the terrain gets rougher.

The SUV may get the 1.6L gasoline engine that is being used by the A-Class and the B-Class. Or maybe a 2.0L powerplant. There should also be a good range of variants just like how Mercedes comes up with vehicles for its consumer base.

It is a bit of a surprise though that the mini-G will have a FWD version. Maybe not disrespecting the G-Wagen tradition but more of catering to the crowd who wants to have the looks but not really going off roads. That really does not make sense, but it must be economics.

The AWD 4Matic variant will most likely lead the pack in terms of popularity. This model though will drop the 3 locking differentials the G-Wagen is known for and will instead get a Haldex clutch.

The project is said to have the green light and is the first in line among other projects such as a new A-Class coupe. If it gets the approval of the bosses, expect it to get into showrooms before the end of 2015.

And of course you may ask where can you buy a used one G-Wagen. This website has all kinds of used Mercedes Benz for sale. They also can ship worldwide cars that you won.

Posted in Mercedes-Benz
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SEAT unveils third generation Leon

SEAT has unwrapped the next gen Leon hatchback. This is a first design revamped by SEAT and we might have to trace back to 2008 since the last bespoke design of the brand.

The new SEAT Leon will be unveiled officially during the auto show in Paris this September. The hatchback uses the modular transverse matrix orMQB platform of the Volkswagen that is already being used by the likes of the Audi A3. The platform will also be the foundation for the new VW Golf and the Skoda Octavia. Because of its new platform, the SEAT Leon will be about 85 kilos lighter compared to the current version.

The new Leon will also have different body styles in contrast with the previous releases. It will be marketed as a five-door, 3-door hatch and as an estate version. The configuration of the hatch is still a bit controversial as the parent company is still playing a strict mom role and is still not giving it a nod. Like the current model, it will also have the Cupra, FR, and Ecomotive versions.

The car manufacturer is trying to broaden its offerings with the addition of new petrol engines that give out 85 horses to 180 horses. There will also be four diesel engines that ranges from 90 hp for the base thru the top billing 184-hp 2.0 TDI. These engines will be paired with 5- or 6-speed manual gearbox or with 6- and 7-speed DSG transmission.

The cabin of the vehicles are also upgraded to cater more to the upmarket taste. The finish levels and specs are higher than the standards before with the use of Alcantara and leather for the upper end of the lineup.

Posted in Seat
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Ultimate XJ sedan rolled out by Jaguar in Beijing

2013-Jaguar-XJ-UltimateThe high end Chinese market wants a ride that spells luxury and given this scenario of needs of chauffeured vehicles, Jaguar wants to grab the opportunity as other competitors are seizing. So the British car marque attends the motor show in Beijing to unwrap the Ultimate edition of the Jaguar XJ sedan.

The top of the line Jaguar XJ gives us a new meaning of the dramatic design the British carmaker has been known for with a perfect combo of lightweight architecture and responsible performance with a good dose of luxury and innovation.

There will only be 30 Ultimate XJ’s to be delivered to the United States before the end of the year with a sticker price of $155,000. The luxurious ride will be offered in Black Amethyst pain finish with external detailing that will distinguish t from the other variants of the XJ.

The rear seats are wrapped in premium semi-aniline leather with power adjustments for the lumbar support and recline. They also have massage functions and access to climate controls. The rear of the vehicle also has a business table made from solid aluminum with piano black trim which can come into a comfortable position with a press of a button.

There is of course a dedicated storage for the champagne flutes which goes well with the champagne chiller in between the rear seats. The center console also has a storage area perfect for business usability.

The passengers of the Ultimate XJ also has an access to an iPad and keyboard that can be charged using docks with leather trim just on the rear of the front seats.

Meridian, a known audio specialist in Britain, designed the 20-speaker system that ensures a great surround sound. The entertainment system for the rear passengers also come with screens mounted on the rear portion of the head rest of the front seats and wireless headphones.

The ride comfort is always excellent as ensured by the revised suspension system of the Jaguar Ultimate XJ sedan. The ride rolls on Maroa 20 inch alloy rims in grey or polished finish.

The Ultimate XJ sedan runs on the supercharged V8 5.0L engine that gives out 510 horsepower linked to an 8-speed gearbox.

Save money by finding a used RVs for sale and having it shipped to you anywhere in the United States

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Leaked: Lamborghini SUV heading to auto show in Beijing?

There has been rumors that Lamborghini is coming up with an SUV due to hit the production pipeline and set to be unwrapped during the upcoming motor show in Beijing. Recently a leaked image of the said vehicle went around the internet.

The Lamborghini SUV might actually be another sedan that might take inspiration from the Estoque Concept that we saw back in 2009.

Anyway, the top executive of Lamborghini says that a 4-door unit fits the direction to which the car manufacturer wants to go. Let us look for example at Lambo’s cousin Porsche which made a hit out of its Cayenne in the SUV segment even with naysayers on the sideline.

We are assuming that if ever Lamborghini will come up with an SUV, it might take hints from the Cayenne or the next gen model of its cousin brand. The engine might take root from the V10 of the Gallardo which may mean as powerful as 575 horsepower. Or even a more exciting is a hybrid setup which might use hybrid technologies.

The new SUV of Lamborghini will be far from the image of their first attempt in the segment in the form of the LM002 which is actually something built for the military. The new SUV will have a sporty attitude and provisions of a luxury ride of course. This should satisfy the taste of the upper bracketsof the can affords in Russia, the US, India, and China.

We might not see this SUV on sale until around 2016. For now we can expect some more details as we jump from auto shows in Geneva then the one in New York before Beijing which will kick off on the 23rd of April.

Posted in Lamborghini

Try the new Porsche 911, join Winner Experience Program

This news might just make Porsche lovers smile as the German car manufacturer gives drivers the chance to test drive the newest Porsche 911 in extreme driving conditions thru their program called Winter Driving Experience.

You do not have to worry about your driving skills, Porsche will have trainers to help you improve your driving skills and smooth out the rough edges of your driving style thru practical and theoretical lessons.

It will be a perfect get away while enjoying the great sports car. When you join the driving program, you will be cruising from the roads of South Africa to the extremely cold settings of the Arctic Circle. The Driving Experience aims at teaching drivers to master the handling of the Porshe 911 in any weather and road conditions.

If you will be signing up for the Finland program, you can hone your skills thru different levels of difficulty from Precision, to Performance, and the top Master training program. In Africa, the tour will kick off in Cape Town and bring the Porsche 911 thru the twisting roads to test the abilities of the vehicle on winding roads.

If you want to join the winter program of Porsche, you can go to their website for more information or you can request for a catalog thru +49 0711/911-23360 to 64.

Posted in Porsche
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Price for Seat Leon FR+ disclosed

Spanish car manufacturer, SEAT, S.A. or simply Seat, has made an announcement about the Seat Leon FR+ as an addition its Leon hatchback product line up. The new Seat Leon FR+ comes with a handsome set of 18-inch Ibera alloy wheels, a Digital Audio Broadcasting radio, adaptive headlights, front-mounted parking sensors, and a five-inch colored touch screen in-car satellite navigation feature.

The power trains for the new Seat Leon FR+ come with two options. First is the 2.0-liter turbocharged stratified injection (TSI) engine that packs 208bhp and a 2.0-liter TurboDiesel-Direct-Inject Engine with 168 bhp. The base model for the Seat Leon FR+ comes with LED rear-lights, sporty seats and interiors, rear sensors for parking, automatic headlights, twin-chrome exhaust pipes, and rain-sensing wipers.
According to Steve Robertson, the marketing head for Seat’s UK base, the Leon FR proves to be a prominent model in the brand’s product line, therefore, the brand needs to maximize the car’s potential appeal.

Moreover, the Spanish car manufacturer is also upgrading the Leon Cupra R model with additions such as the bi-xenon adaptive headlights, Bluetooth technology, Media System 2.2 and the LED rear-light clusters.

The initial tag price of for the Seat Leon FR+ is at £22,615, which is about £1070 higher than the base FR model. Indeed, the Seat Leon FR+ is a manifestation of the stunning combination of hardcore exterior and engine performance as well as the addition of luxury interior features. We just couldn’t wait to have the Seat Leon FR+ on the showrooms and see how it will fare on the tracks.

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Audi Confirms Design Changes in A5 Lineup

German automaker Audi AG recently confirmed its changes in the A5 lineup as well as revisions for the saloon and estate model versions of the A4. A bolder, meaner front headlight design will be one of the lead changes in design to feature the brand’s distinct LED “Wave” look. This one is already seen on the A5 and the new versions of the A8, A6 and even the A1 models.

The models’ front-end will also get a slimmer design change plus a bigger air intakes and a revamped and lighter bumper look. The models’ front grille will also get changes. The instrument panel will receive subtle changes like a new finish. There’s also a new steering wheel design in the works plus optional upholstery designs and trims.

Changes under the hood include a 1.8-liter TFSI model engine with 168bhp for petrol units. For the diesel units, you can expect that a 2.0-liter TDI model engine with 175bhp is attached. But that’s not all, a 2.0-liter TFSI model engine with 211bhp and a supercharged engine with 268bhp are also other engine options for the models. There’s also the 3.0-liter V-6 TDI engine while a 3.0-liter TFSI engine model with 328bhp will run the S4 line up.

Of course, the A4 line up with have the stop-start feature as well as the standard energy recuperation system and the direct fuel injection features. The revamped line up of the Audi A4 will be unveiled during the International Frankfurt Motor Show this coming September.

Posted in Audi, Auto News
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Volkswagen thinking of smaller car models for Chinese market

A lot of reports going around the autoworld is that VW is coming up with its elevent brand. And that brand will be supplying the needs for small cars in the People’s Republic of China.

The production of the new VW vehicles will cater the needs of the Chinese consumers specifically those who are living outside the mega cities of China like Shanghai and Beijing. This demographic segment is starting to grow in number and starting to look for their reasonable means of transport.

Like other foreign car manufacturers who entered the market of China, Volkswagen sells their cars under the VW brand. This next move though involves an agreement to have Chinese partners as required by the local law. The government of China is also foreseeing a growth in the share of the local car brands to about 30% through 40% in 4 years time. VW will be developing a unique sub-brand or brand in cooperation with the Chinese partners to make and sell smaller vehicles.

VW sees the partnership to build a local brand in China as a big opportunity since they are still on the stage of penetrating the new segments of the market.

Volkswagen though is playing catch up to other car manufacturers like General Motors and Honda who have already started development of local car brands with their Chinese counterparts. Honda and local car manufacturer Guangzhou Automobile Group will be launching their Everus brand and their first S1 model this year. GM and partners from Shanghai will have the Baojun that will roll out the Buick Excelle dervied 630 model later this year.

Posted in VW
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