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.

Saturday, 15 February 2014

USA - Dodge celebrates as 7 Chrysler Group cars are named "Most Loved in the USA"

  • The 2014 Dodge Dart, Dodge Durango, Dodge Charger, Dodge Challenger, Jeep® Grand Cherokee, Ram 1500 and Ram 2500/3500 have all been named the “Most Loved Vehicles in America” by Strategic Vision

Strategic Vision has named seven Chrysler Group LLC vehicles as its “Most Loved Vehicles in America,” including:

  • Dodge Dart (Small Car)
  • Dodge Durango (Mid-size SUV)
  • Dodge Charger (Large Car)
  • Dodge Challenger (Specialty Coupe)
  • Jeep® Grand Cherokee (Mid-size SUV)
  • Ram 1500 (Full-size Pickup)
  • Ram 2500 and 3500 (Heavy Duty Pickup)

Consumers were surveyed on whether they Hate or Love their vehicles, or particular aspects of the vehicle and the experiences they deliver. The best-of-the-best earned the titles of “Most Loved Vehicles in America,” reflecting how hard people can fall in love with what they drive.

“Having seven Chrysler Group vehicles named as ‘Most Loved Vehicles in America’ by Strategic Vision is a terrific honor,” said Reid Bigland, Head of U.S. Sales – Chrysler Group LLC. “It’s meaningful to have our customers express their satisfaction and emotional attachment they have with our vehicles; that is what drives us to create and develop vehicles that customers can continue to love.”

Scores are calculated using the reported Love score for each of the attributes delivered by the vehicle and the dealership experiences weighted by each vehicle’s outcome scores – commitment, overall satisfaction, total top emotional responses, proposed repurchase loyalty and actual repurchase loyalty – to provide a Most Loved Index™.

Each point, as measured on The Edwards Commitment Scale™, ranges from 1=Hate it, 2=a Failure, 3=Unsatisfactory, 4=Satisfactory, 5=Excellent, 6=Delightful and 7=Love it. Each point discriminates the quality and depth of the emotional response from the next.

“In our full-year automotive study, the winners both surprise and delight some pundits in the industry,” said Christopher Chaney, Executive Vice President for Strategic Vision. “Love creates vehicles that have a strong position in their markets and is ultimately expressed in being Loyal.”

USA - Kelly Blue Book names 12 best cars of 2014

Not all options are as obvious as a minivan when it comes to cars best suited for families.  In the same light, not all families have the same needs when it comes to their ideal car.  Helping ease the struggle to find the best new cars tailored for families of all sizes, the editors of Kelley Blue Book, the leading provider of new and used car information, have named their recommended list of the 12 Best Family Cars of 2014. 
"This year we built on our process to put together the best family car list by recruiting families to assist our editors in a rigorous comparison test, providing a comprehensive approach to seeking out the most functional new cars for families," said Jack R. Nerad, executive editorial director and executive market analyst for Kelley Blue Book's KBB.com.  "More than just a list, Best Family Cars 2014 is an all-new section of KBB.com that outlines in detail how well America's top family vehicles withstand their daily routines.  The vehicles making the cut are winners in the areas of safety, comfort, driving performance, room for child seats, cargo space, rear-seat entertainment, and other family-friendly features."
The KBB.com expert editors started with 21 different vehicles top-ranked in their Expert Ratings in various family-friendly categories and enlisted the help of several families to thoroughly test these family haulers.  This approach included analyzing seven sedans, six small SUVs, five midsize SUVs, two minivans and one hybrid wagon, from a total of 11 different brands.  The expert editors tallied the results based on participant feedback and compared notes, naming the best of the bunch.
"We were surprised at the number of sedans that made the Best Family Cars list this year," said Nerad.  "Once upon a time before minivans and SUVs, sedans were the primary family car of choice, and this year's list proves the modern sedan still makes a fine family car with the 2014 Honda Accord, Chevrolet Impala and Nissan Altima all landing a spot among the best."  

British prime Minister visits JLR's new powertrain plant

Jaguar Land Rover welcomed the Prime Minister David Cameron to its world-class Engine Manufacturing Centre in the West Midlands. The Prime Minister was given a tour of the new plant where he saw the on-going installation of the manufacturing equipment first hand.

Jaguar Land Rover’s state-of-the-art Engine Manufacturing Centre is the first new facility that the company has built from the ground up. Based at the heart of the UK, it is ideally located between the company’s three other manufacturing sites at Halewood, Castle Bromwich and Solihull. Almost 1,400 jobs will be created by the time the plant reaches its full capacity.

Representing an investment of more than £500 million, the plant will manufacture Jaguar Land Rover’s most advanced engines ever. Designed and developed at the company’s Product Development Centre in Whitley, this new family of premium, lightweight, low-friction, low-emission four cylinder petrol and diesel engines will be manufactured for future Jaguar Land Rover vehicles.

The Prime Minister said, “Whenever I come to one of your plants, it makes my spirits soar when I see such an exciting future for British manufacturing. Everywhere I go in the world I support Jaguar Land Rover. This is a great British success story.”
Jaguar Land Rover’s Executive Director, Mike Wright commented, “Our world-class new facility incorporates the latest technologies meeting the highest standards of production and demonstrates our continued commitment to UK manufacturing.
“We are proud to show Prime Minister David Cameron around our plant today as our team begins to commission the equipment which will be used to manufacture our most advanced engines ever.”

The plant boasts almost 100,000 square metres of internal floor area, equivalent to the area of 14 football pitches. It comprises of three manufacturing halls – one for machining the cylinder heads, cylinder blocks and crankshafts, one for assembling diesel engines and one for assembling petrol engines. The first engines will come off the assembly line in early 2015.  

2014 Alfa Giulietta now on sale in the UK - loads of upgrades and tweaks.

  • 2014 Alfa Romeo Giulietta goes on sale in the UK priced from £18,235 OTR
  • Exterior revisions include a new grille, new fog lamp bezels, new alloy wheel designs and new colours
  • Interior upgrades include sportier and more supportive seats, new door trims and a new steering wheel plus a standard colour touch-screen Uconnect infotainment system with Bluetooth and DAB
  • Improved emissions across the engine range plus more performance from the 2.0-litre JTDM-2 turbo diesel
The 2014 Alfa Romeo Giulietta is now on sale in the UK with renewed style, new engines and more technological content than ever before. Launched in the UK in 2010, the Giulietta remains the most eye-catching and attractive car and in its segment and, as a consequence, the styling revisions for 2014 have been carefully considered, with a new front grille design; revised front fog light bezels; new 16-, 17- and 18-inch alloy wheel designs and new exterior colours (Luna Pearl, Cobalto Blue and Metallo Bronze) to further enhance its appeal.

The interior of the Alfa Giulietta benefits from more extensive revisions: The standard Uconnect™ multimedia system takes pride of place in the redesigned, high-quality dashboard, with the associated USB/Aux ports now relocated to a more convenient position in the centre console.
The all-new Uconnect™ system, fitted as standard across the entire 2014 Alfa Giulietta range, is operated via its five-inch colour touch screen or using voice commands and includes Bluetooth® connectivity, wireless music streaming, hands-free SMS reading and DAB (digital radio). Alfa Giulietta models fitted with satellite navigation benefit from a larger 6.5-inch screen with 3D bird's-eye maps, intelligent route guidance and a one-step destination entry function with voice command. Both systems have been developed in collaboration with first-class partners: Harman and Here Auto for Uconnect™ 6.5” and Continental for Uconnect™ 5”.
New door trim panels and a sporty new steering wheel design bring improved quality and more style to the cabin, while the redesigned seats not only exude Italian craftsmanship, they are also more comfortable and more enveloping - particularly in terms of upper-body lateral support - and are presented in a variety of new upholstery and leather finishes. Extensively revised sound insulation also provides a quieter and more relaxed driving environment.

Under the bonnet, every engine in the Alfa Giulietta range benefits from improved efficiency and lower emissions which doesn’t just make the Giulietta more environmentally friendly, it also results in lower fuel bills and reduced Benefit-in-Kind costs for company car drivers. The 1.4 TB MultiAir170hp TCT, for example, now drops into the 15% BIK band, while the diesel-powered 1.6 JTDM-2 105hp drops from the 17% BIK band down to the 15% band. The new 150hp 2.0 JTDM-2 engine, which debuts on the Giulietta, doesn’t just offer more power and torque compared to the previous 140hp 2.0 JTDM-2 engine, it also produces 9g/km less in terms of CO2 emissions, dropping it into the 17% BIK band.
Regardless of engine choice, the Alfa Giulietta driver always has the option of customising their car's driving character using the standard Alfa DNA driving selector, allowing them to find the ideal blend of comfort, performance, safety and efficiency for the prevailing conditions.
The new 2.0 JTDM-2 150hp
The heart of the new 2.0 JTDM-2 150hp engine is its third-generation Common Rail injection system that uses innovative injectors capable of controlling the amount of diesel injected into the combustion chamber with maximum precision and flexibility, thanks to its balanced hydraulic servo valve. Up to eight injections per stroke are possible together with injection strategies that optimise the combustion process. The Injection Rate Shaping (IRS) system, for example, involves two consecutive injections so close together in time it generates a continuous and modulated fuel supply into the cylinders. In this way the combustion process is improved with quieter operation with reduced particulate and nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions, and because the injection system has 40% fewer components it also offers greater simplicity and reliability.
Driving Dynamics
Built on Alfa Romeo’s most advanced architecture with a sophisticated multi-link rear suspension, the 2014 Alfa Giulietta provides not only one of the most enjoyable driving experiences in its class, it’s also one of the safest cars on the road. In addition to VDC, six airbags, three-point seat belts with double pre-tensioner, an anti-whiplash system and a third load line for excellent passenger compartment protection, the Giulietta is also fitted with the Alfa DNA driving selector, electronic Q2 differential, DST (which prompts drivers to apply the correct steering input in the event of an emergency through impulses at the wheel) and a Pre-fill system which arms the brakes for emergency braking situations when it senses the drive may be losing control of the vehicle. As a further safety measure for 2014, a tyre pressure monitoring system is also now standard across the Alfa Romeo Giulietta range.
The 2014 UK Model Range
At launch, four trim levels will be available: Progression, Distinctive, Exclusive and Sportiva Nav.
Compared to the entry-level Turismo model it replaces, standard equipment on the new Progression model now includes new 16-inch alloy wheels; the Uconnect™ infotainment system with steering wheel remote controls; DAB (digital radio); Bluetooth® connectivity; tyre pressure monitoring; rear electric windows and new seat fabrics with matching dashboard, door and central tunnel inserts. This equates to almost £1,700 worth of additional standard equipment for a modest £470 price increase compared to the outgoing Turismo.

Carryover standard features include the Alfa DNA driving selector, air conditioning, LED daytime running lights, LED tail-lights, VDC stability control and Alfa Romeo’s electronic Q2 differential. Two engines are offered with the Progression trim: The 1.4 TB 120hp turbo petrol and the 1.6 JTDM-2 105hp turbo diesel.
The new Distinctive trim level, which replaces Lusso, benefits from new 16-inch turbine-design alloy wheels and chrome-effect mirrors, while the interior is upgraded with new upholstery; new trim inserts and a cooled glove-box as part of its 2014 revisions. Combined with the DAB and TPMS upgrades, this equates to almost £700 worth of extra equipment for an additional £470. Standard Distinctive equipment, in addition to that already fitted to Progression, also includes rear parking sensors, cruise control, dual-zone automatic climate control, front fog lights, chrome-effect window surrounds, sports dials, an alarm system, a height-adjustable passenger seat and a front armrest with storage. The Distinctive petrol range includes the 1.4 TB 120hp and 1.4 TB MultiAir 170hp engines while the diesel range includes the 1.6 JTDM-2 105hp turbo diesel and Alfa Romeo’s new 2.0 JTDM-2 150hp engine.
The new Exclusive trim level takes the place of Veloce for 2014 and benefits from new 17-inch alloy wheels and new leather and micro-fibre upholstery, plus rain-sensing wipers; automatic headlights; electric-folding door mirrors; dark tinted windows; an electro-chromatic rear-view mirror; a rear arm-rest and electric front-seat lumbar support. In total, close to £2,000 worth of additional features are now standard while the price increase is just £920. Exclusive models are also equipped with a sports suspension; sports leather steering wheel with red stitching; aluminium sports pedals and kick-plates; darkened headlight clusters; satin-effect mirror covers and side body skirts. The Exclusive engine range is comprised of the 1.4 TB MultiAir170hp (available as a six-speed manual or with the six-speed ALFA TCT transmission); the 1.6 JTDM-2 105hp and the new 2.0 JTDM-2 150hp.
Sportiva Nav
The new Sportiva Nav trim level benefits from the standard features of the outgoing Sportiva model - its sports suspension; 18-inch alloy wheels in a dark titanium finish; red Brembo brake callipers with uprated discs and unique badging - but is now fitted with a sports steering wheel with white stitching; leather and Alcantara upholstery; front parking sensors and, as the name suggests, a new 6.5-inch Uconnect™ satellite navigation system, with TMS, all as standard. The 2014 Sportiva Nav engine range is comprised of the 1.4 TB MultiAir 170hp (available as a manual or with the ALFA TCT transmission) and the new 2.0 JTDM-2 150hp engine, with prices increasing by just £810 despite more than £2,500 worth of additional equipment now being offered as standard.
More to Come
A range-topping 2.0 JTDM-2 175hp engine, now with TCT as standard, will be available in both Exclusive and Sportiva Nav trims in the coming months, while details of a new sporting flagship for the Giulietta range will be announced at the 2014 Geneva Motor Show in early March.
Prices for the 2014 Alfa Romeo Giulietta start at £18,235 for the 1.4 TB 120hp Progression, while the diesel range starts at £19,170 for the 1.6 JTDM-2 105hp Progression. Prices for Alfa Giulietta models powered by the new 2.0 JTDM-2 150hp engine start at £21,720 in Distinctive trim. The 2014 Alfa Romeo Giulietta is on sale in the UK now and is available for customers to test drive at Alfa Romeo dealerships nationwide.
EngineTrimPrice OTR
1.4 TB 120hpProgression£18,235
1.4 TB 120hpDistinctive£19,485
1.4 TB MultiAir 170hpDistinctive£20,985
1.4 TB MultiAir 170hpExclusive£22,735
1.4 TB MultiAir 170hpSportiva Nav£24,485
1.4 TB MultiAir 170hp  ALFA TCTExclusive£24,035
1.4 TB MultiAir 170hp ALFA TCTSportiva Nav£25,785
1.6 JTDM-2 105hpProgression£19,170
1.6 JTDM-2 105hpDistinctive£20,420
1.6 JTDM-2 105hpExclusive£22,170
2.0 JTDM-2 150hpDistinctive£21,720
2.0 JTDM-2 150hpExclusive£23,470
2.0 JTDM-2 150hpSportiva Nav£25,220

Friday, 14 February 2014

Jaguar Design Boss teases third F-Type Derivative

Jaguar's head of design, Ian Callum, reveals F-Type Targa is being considered

Jaguar could extend the F-Type lineup by adding a Targa variant to the range. Ian Callum, head of design at Jaguar hinted that a Targa model, with a retractable hard top roof, could be in the pipeline after sketches had been drawn up, with the Porsche 911 Targa firmly in the brand’s sights.

Speaking at the UK launch of the Jaguar F-Type Coupe, Ian Callum told Auto Express about the potential for what would be the third F-Type model. “We're considering it, but it’s not definite.”

He added: “The issue with the Targa is volume. If you think of Porsche, 10 per cent of its cars are Targa, 10 per cent of ours is less than theirs. You have to work out the business case but we have considered it, it’s not decided yet.”

Last year Jaguar announced investment plans of £1.5 billion in UK operations that would fund and support new products and product development, spearheaded by the 2015 BMW 3 Series rival. Callum also revealed the brand was working on “three or four cars at the moment”, with the production version of the Jaguar C-X17 SUV set to follow the small saloon – likely to be called the XS – in 2016.


BMW releases pictures and info on new FRONT WHEEL DRIVE 2-Series Active Tourer

BMW today released details and pictures of the 2-series Active Tourer, a minivan rival to the Mercedes-Benz B class that will be the brand's first front-wheel-drive vehicle.
The model is underpinned by BMW Group's UKW fwd architecture that debuted last year on the third-generation Mini hatchback. The 2-series Active Tourer will also be the first BMW to offer a three-cylinder engine -- a new turbocharged 1.5-liter gasoline engine that is also available on the Mini.
The 2-series Active Tourer combines comfort and functionality with BMW's driving dynamics, BMW said in a statement.
The model will debut at the Geneva auto show on March 4 and will join the rear-wheel-drive 2-series coupe in BMW's lineup when it launches later this year.
The 2 series Active Tourer's fwd marks a departure for the BMW brand, traditionally known for its sedans and sporty SUVs.
The 2 series Active Tourer has luggage capacity that can be enlarged to 1,510 liters from 468 liters.

The vehicle's fwd platform may upset BMW purists who value the driving dynamics of the automaker's rwd models, but BMW will remain a very much a rwd company, development director Herbert Diess told Automotive News Europe in an interview earlier this year.
The 2-series Active Tourer is a response to customers downsizing from larger sedans, especially in Europe, he said. BMW plans about 30 rwd models and 15 fwd vehicles, including Mini-badged models.
Diess said the company is still discussing if and when to launch other fwd BMWs. He said the fwd platform has considerable flexibility because it can underpin midsized models up to 4600mm long, as well as compact vehicles and Minis.

USA - Museum cars damaged in sinkhole collapse will be shipped to Warren Mich.

To help the National Corvette Museum recover from the massive sinkhole that opened under the facility this week, Chevrolet will oversee restoration of the Corvettes damaged. General Motors Design in Warren, Mich., will lead the project.

“The vehicles at the National Corvette Museum are some of the most significant in automotive history,” said Mark Reuss, executive vice president of General Motors Global Product Development. “There can only be one 1-millionth Corvette ever built. We want to ensure as many of the damaged cars are restored as possible so fans from around the world can enjoy them when the Museum reopens.”

Ed Welburn, vice president of GM Global Design, will oversee the restoration.

When the cars are recovered, they will be shipped to the Mechanical Assembly facility, a small specialty shop within GM Design, where the best restoration approach will be determined. Mechanical Assembly has been part of GM Design since the 1930s, and today maintains and restores many of the vehicles in the GM Heritage Collection and GM’s historic concept cars.

The National Corvette Museum is independently owned, and supported solely by charitable donations from enthusiasts. It is currently accepting donations on its website to assist in refurbishing the facility. Donations are tax-deductible.

Founded in 1911 in Detroit, Chevrolet is now one of the world's largest car brands, doing business in more than 140 countries and selling more than 4.9 million cars and trucks a year.  Chevrolet provides customers with fuel-efficient vehicles that feature spirited performance, expressive design, and high quality.

USA - Abarth now gives all new owners a free Track Experience,

  • The Abarth Track Experience offers professional driving instruction sessions to Fiat 500 Abarth owners
  • Drivers will learn to maximize their driving skills on the street, strip and track
  • 2014 schedule includes events in California, Texas, Florida, New Jersey and Illinois

The 2014 Abarth Track Experience kicks off this month, giving Fiat 500 Abarth owners the opportunity to develop their driving skills in a one-day performance adventure.
Drivers will pilot cars from a fleet of Abarths provided and put their skills to the test through four driving modules: autocross, head-to-head challenge, driving dynamics and performance drive. Drivers will end their day by riding shotgun as professional drivers push the track-tuned Abarth vehicles to the limit.

“Abarth owners already know what a thrill it is to drive the Fiat 500 Abarth and Abarth Cabrio on a daily basis,” said Jason Stoicevich, Head of FIAT Brand North America. “And the Abarth Track Experience revs the fun to the red line, allowing owners to experience the limits of the car in a safe track environment. At the end of this experience, owners become true drivers by better understanding the dynamics of the ‘small but wicked’ Fiat 500 Abarth.”

The 2014 Abarth Track Experience begins February 18 at Laguna Seca in Salinas, Calif., with stops throughout the year in Ft. Worth, Texas; Fontana, Calif.; Angleton, Texas; Daytona Beach, Fla.; Millville, N.J.; Joliet, Ill.; and Englishtown, N.J.

The Track Experience registration fee is included in the cost of each Fiat 500 Abarth or Abarth Cabrio.

The ALL NEW Peugeot 108, the final piece in Peugeots re-invention

  • PEUGEOT presents its all-new compact city car, the 108
  • Two distinct body styles, 108 Hatchback and the 108 TOP! with retractable fabric roof
  • Characterful and chic design perfectly suited to urban journeys
  • Packed with choice – hatchback or retractable fabric roof models, three or five doors, exterior and interior colours with extensive personalisation
  • Latest ‘connected’ technology, including innovative ‘Mirror Screen’
  • Ultra-efficient three-cylinder engines in a lightweight vehicle, from just 840kg

“In just two years, PEUGEOT has completely renewed its offering in the A, B and C segments. Today, the brand is proud to welcome the new PEUGEOT 108 to its youngest ever model range.”
Maxime Picat, Director General, Automobiles PEUGEOT.

“The new PEUGEOT 108 participates in the brand’s product offensive and move up-market, with a rewarding and outgoing spirit, emphasised by the personalisation schemes expected by customers.”
Xavier Peugeot, Product Director, Automobiles PEUGEOT.

PEUGEOT 108: meet the new star of the city

“Conceived as a car from the segment above, the new 108 fits in with the values of the PEUGEOT Marque. It is balanced, elegant and refined. In a minimal volume, it marries precise lines and harmonious curves to encourage the driver to take the wheel.” Ivo Groen, 108 Styling Manager.

Another chapter in PEUGEOT’s small car success story begins with the unveiling of the all-new 108. For the first time, the brand‘s urban runabout is available in two distinct body styles – the 108 Hatchback and the retractable fabric roof 108 TOP!.

At 3.47m long and 1.62m wide, it’s got the compact dimensions that will really make the difference in town. Its reduced overhangs and turning circle of just 9.6m allow it to avoid obstacles with ease. This architecture allows the driving position to be brought well forward, providing excellent vision in every direction.

The car has been designed to excel in urban traffic. The front end is dominated by its bold grille, central beam and lower air intake, while the front lamps are firmly set into the bodywork. Common to all trim levels, their ‘technical’ design combines smart black and chrome to give the car a sharp and dynamic look. The upper sections contain LEDs for daytime running lights.

With its machine-finished edge, the grille surround creates a solid on-road presence and proudly houses the PEUGEOT name badge. The famous Lion logo sits above, central between the two bonnet lines which run up to the windscreen in one fluid movement.

From the side, the 108’s compact form is highlighted by its front and rear overhangs, both reduced to the minimum. Access to the interior remains easy, with one or two doors on each side that stretch almost from wheel to wheel. The car’s dynamism is underlined by a chrome blade that emerges from the front wings and extends to the bottom of the glass above.

The wraparound-style rear lights include all functionality and, with a 3D effect, make the brand’s three-claw signature motif appear to emerge from the body. Together with the horizontal lines of the rear bumper, they give the car an extra perception of width. Above, the large glazed tailgate extends from the spoiler to the loading sill with integrated hinges. At the base, opaque markings mask the load space.

The contemporary and sophisticated exterior is mirrored on the inside of the PEUGEOT 108, with a comfortable cabin that feels like it has come from a much larger premium car. It has been designed to be intuitive to use, with each area being allocated to a specific function and information brought together for easy and quick reading. The speedometer housing forms part of the steering column, which is adjustable for height, and covered by a cowl to ensure it is legible in all light conditions. It comprises an analogue speedometer and an LCD screen arranged concentrically. Either side, extensions house the rev counter and gear shift indicator.

Once the driver is sitting in the height-adjustable seat, the various controls are all within easy reach. They include the striking 7-inch touch-screen, the starter button coupled with the PEUGEOT Open and Go system, plus the automatic air conditioning.

Behind the steering wheel are controls for the speed limiter, while the fuel filler flap opening and heated electric mirror controls are easily accessible on the dashboard. The controls for the front electric windows fall readily to hand, grouped together on the driver’s door panel.

For customers opting for the retractable fabric roof 108 TOP!, the electric control switch for the fabric roof – 80cm wide and 76cm long – is just above the rear view mirror. It’s possible to adjust the opening to any position, and an aero-acoustic deflector is deployed automatically to reduce cabin turbulence.

PEUGEOT 108: personalisation
“From the start of the project, we wanted to create a car that made the driver happy. With its many qualities, the new PEUGEOT 108 makes you smile, every day. With personalisation, everyone will have their own unique PEUGEOT 108.” Béatrice Garric, Brand Project Manager.

The all-new PEUGEOT 108 is already packed with character, but customers can add even more by choosing from a wide range of personalisation options. For body colour, there are eight striking shades, including two which are exclusive to the model: Aïkinite is a golden copper, and Purple Berry, a stunning shade of violet.

Reserved for the three-door hatchback are two versions of two-tone paint, Purple Berry and Zircon Grey, or Diamond White and Aïkinite. Anyone opting for the 108 TOP! model has the choice of three retractable fabric roof colours – Black, Grey or Purple Berry.

In addition, there are seven personalisation themes, three interior ambiences and a choice of six trims. The Peugeot 108 will cater for every taste.

PEUGEOT 108: the connected car
“PEUGEOT 108 is the city car that is ahead of its time. Evidently it is hyper-compact; that is the basic requirement. It takes its driver into a new era of connectivity with the Mirror Screen technology. At the wheel, the experience is unprecedented.” Pascal Béziat, PEUGEOT 108 Project Director.

The all-new PEUGEOT 108 brings the urban car into a new era with its large touch-screen in the middle of the dashboard.  Standard from Active trim, this 7-inch display boosts the relationship between car and driver to a new high. It is the interface for the audio system, trip computer and for vehicle settings, but using Bluetooth® connectivity is also the access point for the driver’s smartphone.

The user can connect the phone’s applications that are compatible with use in a vehicle using Mirror Screen. This function operates using MirrorLinkTM technology for telephones running on Android, RIM and Windows, and by AppInCar for telephones running on Apple’s iOS.

It means the touch-screen in the PEUGEOT 108 becomes a mirror image of the connected smartphone. The driver then operates their smartphone from the car’s touch-screen. Depending on the telephone connected, applications can also be operated by voice commands using a voice recognition system.

For obvious safety considerations, access to applications is managed differently according to the state of the vehicle. For example, when the car is moving, the driver can only use applications such as navigation, or those for infotainment. This includes PEUGEOT Music, the brand’s internet radio station.

PEUGEOT 108: driving pleasure every day
“For the buyer, the new 108 is the guarantee of the brand’s move up-market. Style, quality, equipment, engines …everything has been taken into account to satisfy the customer who has the feeling of driving in a vehicle from the segment above.” Xavier Nicolas, PEUGEOT 108 Product Manager.

With its compact dimensions, the all-new PEUGEOT 108 is dynamic and agile around town, with excellent all-round visibility and practicality. For example, the PEUGEOT Open and Go system allows the doors to be unlocked, and the tailgate to be unlocked and partially opened, with just a press on the appropriate button.

On opening the tailgate, the parcel shelf automatically folds away against the rear screen and reveals a boot that is generous for the segment – 196 litres with the puncture repair kit, 180 litres with the spare wheel. Loading is easy thanks to the low sill, just 77cm off the ground, and a metre-wide space between the wheel arches. The initial volume can be extended to 750 litres by folding the 50/50 rear seat backrests forward. To do this, simply pull one of the straps accessible from the boot. Inside, the PEUGEOT 108 provides several storage areas. For example, the glove box and door pockets will take a 1-litre and 500ml bottle respectively.

A comfortable driving position is quickly found using the steering column height and seat adjustments. The PEUGEOT Open and Go system means the driver can simply press the button on the centre panel to start the engine. The driver can concentrate on safe driving thanks to the speed limiter and automatic lighting. If reverse gear is engaged, the reversing camera displays a colour image on the touch-screen.

Passengers are protected in all circumstances by six airbags fitted as standard: two frontal airbags (the passenger airbag can be switched off), two lateral airbags at the front, and two curtain airbags covering the front and rear seats. Finally, for the safety of children in the car, the two rear seats are equipped with IsoFix mounts.

PEUGEOT 108: an engine to suit all uses

The 108 range is made up of four efficient three-cylinder power units:

  • 1.0-litre e-VTi 68bhp 5-speed manual – 88g/km CO2 Stop & Start
  • 1.0-litre VTi  68bhp 5-speed manual – 95g/km CO2
  • 1.0-litre VTi 68bhp 5-speed electronic – 97g/km CO2,
  • 1.2-litre PureTech VTi 82bhp 5-speed manual – 99g/km CO2

Each works to take advantage of the lightness of the PEUGEOT 108 – it weighs from just 840kg – to provide occupants with the perfect balance between road-holding and comfort. Running gear has been developed around a pseudo-McPherson front axle and a deformable rear beam made from a shaped tube. Compared to a component made from pressed steel, this solution offers the advantages of improved guidance and reduced weight.

PEUGEOT 108: safe and easy handling on the road
As soon as you take the controls of the all-new PEUGEOT 108, it reveals just how easy it is to use. Its light weight, electric power steering and the quality of its running gear all make their contribution.

The track is 1,425mm at the front and 1,420mm at the rear. There are two tyre sizes, 165/65 R14 or 165/60 R15, with ultra-low rolling resistance. They are continuously monitored by the Indirect Tyre Under-Inflation Detection system. All models have Hill Start Assist.

The braking system includes ABS, Electronic Brake Force Distribution, Emergency Collision Braking System and switchable ESP as standard. Stopping power comes from 247mm ventilated discs at the front and 200mm drums at the rear.

All this advanced technology combines in the PEUGEOT 108 to make every driver smile. With responsive steering, stable braking and a refined ride, the car is just as at home on the open road as it is in town.

It’s a compact vehicle for a new generation of urban drivers who seek a sophisticated and versatile model that meets their every motoring need. The PEUGEOT 108 means there is no need to compromise, with a high level of standard equipment, a wide range of desirable optional extras and great value for money.

The all-new PEUGEOT 108 will have its world premiere at the Geneva Motor Show on Tuesday 4th March, and will go on sale in the UK on 1st July 2014.

New rear engined Renault Twingo, the re-birth of an iconic car.

Two decades after it revolutionised the small car segment with the first-generation Twingo, Renault has taken a fresh look at its celebrated city car. The brand’s engineers and designers started from a blank sheet of paper and took their inspiration from the legacy left by the original Twingo and the Renault 5. The result is a new, innovative and agile car that is great fun to drive.

Today sees Renault take the wraps off New Twingo, the appeal of which includes a choice of four striking colours and a truly assertive personality.

A project in association with Daimler

In 2008, Renault’s engineers and designers set out to create the next-generation Twingo with the aim of rekindling the innovative spirit that was such a hallmark of the original Twingo released in 1992. It was a challenging mission but they set their sights high, in keeping with the philosophy behind the iconic model which lost no time in becoming a symbol of Renault’s creativity.

The aim was to create an even roomier and more agile city car, despite its smaller footprint, and this is how the idea of switching to a rear-mounted engine took form, in spite of the higher development costs this entailed.

Renault’s thoughts found an echo in those of Daimler which, at the same time, was exploring ideas for the next-generation two- and four-seat versions of the Smart. After early talks, a strategic cooperation agreement was concluded by the two firms in 2010, marking the official green light for the joint-development of New Twingo and the next versions of the two- and four-seat Smart.

A rear-mounted engine for agile handling and extra cabin space

Positioning the engine at the rear is a significant plus for a small city car since it frees up the front end and considerably improves the turning circle. Indeed, New Twingo is surprisingly manoeuvrable in built-up areas and parking calls for only a few turns of the steering wheel.

Combined with the use of a smaller block and the positioning of the wheels at the car’s extreme corners, the rear-mounted engine also frees up extra cabin space, while New Twingo also boasts the sort of wheelbase and roomy interior more generally associated with models in the next segment up.

Thanks to its pleasantly agile handling, spacious cabin and small front end, New Twingo delivers all the fundamentals that made the initial Twingo such a hit when it was unveiled at the 1992 Paris Motor Show.

A colourful personality

Mirroring the Twin’Z and Twin’Run concept cars that Renault presented in 2013, New Twingo oozes personality.

Like its forebear, New Twingo comes in a choice of four vibrant ‘pop’ colours (light blue, white, yellow and red), an unmistakable sign that the Twingo spirit is well and truly back!

Other cues are heavily inspired by the Renault 5, including the rake of New Twingo’s rear screen and its prominent shoulders which are redolent of the rear-engined Renault 5 Turbo that proved so popular with the public in its day.

The front end features the brand’s new trademark styling, including a prominent Renault logo set to a black background. New Twingo’s expressive gaze is reinforced by its big head lights, which are topped by the direction indicators, as well as by its LED daytime running lights which combine a hi-tech feel with an echo of the model’s predecessors. New Twingo’s lines give it a cheery yet robust air, while the small car’s sprightly personality is further underpinned by its readily recognisable lighting signature.

The originality of New Twingo’s wide glass hatch makes an important contribution to the modernity its rear-end styling, while the rear lights are a natural prolongation of the tailgate.

Meanwhile, the new city car’s five-door architecture – a first in the history of the model – makes it even more versatile than ever. Indeed, New Twingo carries over some of the keys that are behind the success of its sibling, New Clio, including a sleek profile, concealed rear door handles and plenty of scope for personalisation thanks to the range of body colours and customisable exterior trim features like the door mirrors, side protective mouldings and decals. The four body colours and customisation options mean that New Twingo can take on a host of stances, from urban to sporty, feminine and masculine.

“New Renault Twingo was inspired not only by the original Twingo but also by the Renault 5. It is a modern take on the city car genre with the accent on innovation in terms of its lines and architecture. New Twingo is a fun, playful and vibrant city car.” Laurens van den Acker, Head of Industrial Design, Renault

New Twingo… the ‘inside’ story
On March 4, it will be the turn of New Twingo’s interior to be revealed at the 2014 Geneva Motor Show. Just as they did when penning New Twingo’s exterior lines, the design team drew inspiration from the model’s héritage to propose a colourful and cheerful cabin which has been ingeniously thought through to deliver user-friendly, everyday versatility.