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, 20 August 2016

Volvo Cars and Uber are joining forces to develop the next generation of autonomous cars.

Volvo Cars, the Swedish premium car maker, and Uber, the world’s leading ride-sharing company, are to join forces to develop next-generation autonomous driving cars.
The two companies have signed an agreement to establish a joint project that will develop new base vehicles that will be able to incorporate the latest developments in AD technologies, up to and including fully autonomous driverless cars. The base vehicles will be manufactured by Volvo Cars and then purchased from Volvo by Uber. Volvo Cars and Uber are contributing a combined USD300m to the project.

Both Uber and Volvo will use the same base vehicle for the next stage of their own autonomous car strategies. This will involve Uber adding its own self-developed autonomous driving systems to the Volvo base vehicle. Volvo will use the same base vehicle for the next stage of its own autonomous car strategy, which will involve fully autonomous driving.
The Volvo-Uber project marks a significant step in the automotive business, with a car manufacturer joining forces with a new Silicon Valley-based entrant to the car industry, underlining the way in which the global automotive industry is evolving in response to the advent of new technologies. 
The alliance marks the beginning of what both companies view as a longer-term industrial partnership.
Håkan Samuelsson, president and chief executive of Volvo Cars, said: “Volvo is one of the most progressive and contemporary car makers in the world. 
It is a world leader in the development of active safety and autonomous drive technology, and possesses an unrivalled safety credibility. We are very proud to be the partner of choice for Uber, one of the world’s leading technology companies. This alliance places Volvo at the heart of the current technological revolution in the automotive industry.”
The new base vehicle will be developed on Volvo Cars’ fully modular Scalable Product Architecture (SPA). SPA is one of the most advanced car architectures in the world and is currently used on Volvo Cars’ top-of-the-line multiple-award-winning XC90 SUV, as well as the S90 premium saloon and V90 premium estate.
SPA has been developed as part of Volvo Cars’ USD11bn global industrial transformation programme, which started in 2010, and has been prepared from the outset for the latest autonomous drive technologies as well as next-generation electrification and connectivity developments. It is these capabilities that attracted Uber to Volvo.
The development work will be conducted by Volvo Cars engineers and Uber engineers in close collaboration. This project will further add to the scalability of the SPA platform to include all needed safety, redundancy and new features required to have autonomous vehicles on the road.
Travis Kalanick, Uber’s chief executive, said: “Over one million people die in car accidents every year. These are tragedies that self-driving technology can help solve, but we can’t do this alone. That’s why our partnership with a great manufacturer like Volvo is so important. Volvo is a leader in vehicle development and best-in-class when it comes to safety. By combining the capabilities of Uber and Volvo we will get to the future faster, together.”

USA - Genesis and Amazon collaborate to let you talk to your car when you are away from it.

First Automaker to Launch Amazon Alexa Skill for a Heightened Luxury Experience
  • Genesis Connected Services links the Alexa service built into Amazon Echo, Tap, Echo Dot and Fire TV with the Genesis G80 and G90 to send remote car commands from inside homes
  • Amazon Alexa skill for Genesis features at launch include: 
    • Remote engine start with climate control
    • Remote door lock/unlock
    • Remote horn/lights
  • Genesis G90 owners receive a complimentary Amazon.com Gift Card, which can be applied toward an Amazon Echo*
  • Genesis vehicles are equipped with three years of complimentary Genesis Connected Car Services
“Did I lock the car?” “How can I warm up my car on a snowy morning without going outside, get my news and still get to work on time?” These are questions that can leave many car owners feeling frazzled. But not G80 and G90 owners, as Genesis is the first automaker to launch an Alexa skill, allowing remote voice commands to control connected cars. 

Genesis Connected Services can take care of these tasks and more from inside the home using the Alexa voice service on Amazon Echo, Echo Dot and Amazon Tap. The new Alexa skill for Genesis is available today across Alexa-enabled devices. 

“We’re excited to bring the convenience of voice and Alexa to the Genesis G80 and G90,” said Steve Rabuchin, vice president, Amazon Alexa. “With this innovative Alexa implementation, customers can now start their car, and get the heat going all just by asking Alexa from the comfort of their own home. We can’t wait for our customers to try it out.”

Additionally, Genesis G90 owners will receive a complimentary Amazon.com Gift Card redeemable towards an Amazon Echo.

“The Amazon Alexa skill for Genesis demonstrates our progressive commitment to technology that is intuitive and customer-focused. It aligns with our belief that time and convenience are the ultimate luxuries,” said Erwin Raphael, general manager of Genesis in the U.S. market. 

“From remotely locking your car from your living room, to starting your G90 and setting the temperature from your bedroom, the Alexa skill for Genesis offers a new level of ease for owners.”

How It Works
Amazon Alexa allows customers to send remote commands to their car from inside their home using simple voice interaction through Genesis Connected Services and an Alexa-enabled device. 

To send commands to Genesis vehicles via Alexa, users must enable the Genesis skill in their Alexa app available on iOS, Android and Fire tablets, and then link their existing Genesis Connected Services Account within the Alexa app. 

Voice commands will only be sent to Genesis vehicles after Alexa prompts owners for their Genesis Connected Services Personal Identification Number (PIN).

How to Start Genesis Amazon Alexa
Example User Statement to Alexa
Example Alexa’s Response to User
“Alexa, open Genesis.”
“Welcome to the Genesis skill.”

Genesis Amazon Alexa Skill: Remote Services
Remote Services
Examples of Voice Commands to Alexa
Remote Start with Set Temperature
“Alexa, tell Genesis to start my car at 70 degrees.”
Remote Start
“Alexa, tell Genesis to start my Black G90.”
Remote Stop
“Alexa, tell Genesis to stop my Gray G90.”
Remote Lock
“Alexa, tell Genesis to lock my car.”
Remote Unlock
“Alexa, tell Genesis to unlock my car.”
Remote Lights
“Alexa, tell Genesis to flash the lights on my G80.”
Remote Horns and Lights
“Alexa, tell Genesis to honk the horn on my car.”

USA - Fiat's Abarth brand adds the 124 Spider and 500 to Bob Bondurant’s School of High Performance Driving.

  • All-new Fiat 124 Spider Abarth and Fiat 500 Abarth join Bondurant’s lineup of high-performance vehicles
  • All customers who purchase or lease a Fiat 124 Spider Abarth or Fiat 500 Abarth will receive – for no charge – a one-day session of high-performance driving with professional instruction and time on the track as part of the FIAT package
  • Non-FIAT owners can purchase racing instruction through Bondurant and experience the high-performance Abarth models on the track
  • FIAT and Bondurant will celebrate this partnership with wrapped FIAT vehicles and displays at enthusiast events this month:
    • Woodward Dream Cruise, Detroit, Michigan (Saturday, August 20)
    • Concorso Italiano, Monterey, California (Saturday, August 20)
The FIAT brand is partnering with the legendary Bob Bondurant School of High Performance Driving for an all-new Abarth Track Experience, offering owners and fans of the “small but wicked” Abarth models an opportunity to develop their racing and driving skills.
The Fiat 124 Spider Abarth and the Fiat 500 Abarth will join Bondurant’s current lineup of high-performance vehicles as part of the new Fiat Trackside and Road Rally programs, which will be available beginning in November. The 124 Spider Abarth will also be featured in a special race series at Bondurant for Fiat Trackside members.

“We have a great relationship with Bob Bondurant, and extending our partnership is an excellent opportunity to provide FIAT fans with the knowledge, skills and setting they need to fully experience the performance that the Abarth models can deliver,” said Tim Kuniskis, Head of Passenger Car Brands – Dodge, SRT, Chrysler and FIAT, FCA – North America. 

“The Fiat 124 Spider Abarth and 500 Abarth join the ranks of the high-performance Dodge Charger and Challenger SRT Hellcats and Viper models that are already part of Bondurant’s fleet, adding to the ‘fun-to-drive’ factor and bringing the Abarth name to a new group of performance enthusiasts.”
Bondurant’s new Fiat Trackside driving program, featuring the 500 Abarth and 124 Spider Abarth, includes an introduction to the FIAT brand and classroom instruction. 

Guests will then join in instructor-led skid, slalom, auto-cross and team rally cross activities, as well as hot laps. The optional second day “Road Rally” is an all-inclusive program that begins at the Bondurant facility. 

The 180- to 220-mile rally includes a morning coffee break, followed by an array of scenic Arizona highways and a private lunch before participants return to the Bondurant School.
“We’re excited that FIAT will join our team to expand our driving programs,” said Bob Bondurant, owner and CEO of Bob Bondurant School of High Performance Driving. “The Fiat 500 Abarth and 124 Spider Abarth will make great additions to our amazing lineup. 

The capabilities of the Fiat coupe and roadster will give people the chance to get behind the wheel of balanced performance vehicles that are as fun to drive on the track as they are during a daily commute.”
FIAT customers who purchase or lease a Fiat 124 Spider Abarth or Fiat 500 Abarth have one year from their purchase or lease date to take advantage of the Bob Bondurant School of High Performance Driving opportunity, which is offered at no charge. 

For more information, to register or to verify whether a particular vehicle qualifies, please visit www.abarthexperience.com.
The all-new 2017 Fiat 124 Spider revives the storied nameplate, bringing its classic Italian styling and performance to a new generation. 

Paying homage to the original 124 Spider nearly 50 years after its introduction, the 2017 Fiat 124 Spider delivers the ultimate Italian roadster experience with driving excitement, technology and safety combined with iconic design. 

The 2017 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth features the proven turbocharged 1.4-liter MultiAir four-cylinder engine, delivering 164 horsepower and 184 lb.-ft. of torque. 

The Abarth-exclusive Sport Mode changes the calibrations of the engine, automatic transmission, electric power steering and dynamic stability control system to ensure a sporty, responsive and performance-oriented driving experience.
A mechanical limited slip differential, featuring a low torque bias ratio, provides improved traction and handling, as well as improved launch performance and power delivery during cornering. 

The Abarth’s unique sport suspension includes mono-tube Bilstein front and rear shock absorbers for increased traction and more precise handling. 

The available Brembo braking system with 17-inch alloy wheels offers monoblock aluminum calipers with four pistons, allowing for improved braking.
Pricing for the all-new 2017 Fiat 124 Spider, the most affordable turbo-powered convertible in the U.S., starts at $24,995 U.S. Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP), not including destination. The high-performance 124 Spider Abarth starts at $28,195 U.S. MSRP.

USA - Honda launches the new 2017 Fit subcompact, one of the best car's available for the money

  • One of Kelley Blue Book's 10 Best Back-to-School Cars of 2016
  • Named both "Best Hatchback for the Money" and "Best Subcompact Car for the Money" by U.S. News & World Report
On-sale starting tomorrow, the 2017 Honda Fit marks its 10th anniversary in America as the third generation of Honda's versatile 5-door subcompact hatchback, first introduced to the U.S. in 2006 as a 2007 model. 
The Honda Fit has continued to receive accolades as a standout in the subcompact category, recently earning praise from U.S. News & World Report as Best Hatchback for the Money, and one ofAmerica's 10 Best Back-to-School Cars of 2016 by KBB.com.
For the 2017 model year, Lunar Silver metallic replaces Alabaster Silver metallic in the exterior color palette. 

Fit starts at a manufacturer's suggested retail price (MSRP) of $15,9901 while continuing to offer the functionality, fun and refinement that defines the model together with modern styling, a dynamic driving experience and available technology and luxury features.

Fundamental to its design, the 2017 Fit offers class-leading passenger volume, cargo volume (52.7 cu ft. with rear seats down), and versatility, courtesy of its center-mounted fuel tank and ingenious Magic Seat®. 

The Fit epitomizes smart functionality with spacious and comfortable seating for five and the ability to carry voluminous cargo, including long and tall items. 

The interior features a remarkable 95.7 cubic feet in passenger volume and 39.3 inches of rear seat leg room. To put this in perspective, Honda Fit's rear legroom is more generous than most midsize cars – in some instances offering nearly four more inches of legroom to rear-seat passengers.              

Chassis & Powertrain

A highly space-efficient body structure pairs with the chassis for a rigid and lightweight platform with a long wheelbase, providing sporty handling with a steering linearity that gives the driver a sense of oneness with the vehicle. 

The Fit's fun-to-drive character includes acceleration performance provided by the Earth Dreams™ Technology engine mated to either of two transmissions – a slick-shifting 6-speed manual or a Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) with G-Shift Control, increasing both performance and fuel efficiency. 

The 1.5L 4-cylinder engine has a DOHC cylinder head with i-VTEC+VTC valve and timing control plus direct fuel injection, the first use of such a system in a Honda subcompact. The engine delivers 130 horsepower @ 6,800 rpm and 114 lb.-ft. of torque at 4,600 rpm (both SAE net).

Fuel Economy

The Fit has an EPA fuel-economy rating2 of 29/36/32 (city/highway/combined) for the manual transmission, 33/40/36 for the LX trim with CVT and 32/37/34 for the EX and EX-L trim with CVT. 

The 6MT optimizes close individual ratios to aid performance while offering a wide overall range to improve fuel efficiency. The CVT enhances engine responsiveness, providing quick and smooth acceleration while improving fuel efficiency with a wide ratio range and low internal friction.


Providing an outward expression of the 2017 Fit's handling and power is a sporty exterior design. A progressive and purposeful style is achieved by the slim headlights that integrate into a solid grille design, an aggressive lower intake and the linear slope of the hood and windshield. 

The purposeful style continues with the strong design of the chiseled sides that emphasize the wheels and the dynamically tapered roofline ending in a color-matched spoiler. To accentuate the exterior styling, the Fit is available in eight colors, including several vibrant options.


Inside, the Fit's interior room and visibility create a sense of airy spaciousness, which is complemented by soft-touch materials that raise the feeling of quality. The rich and sophisticated black with silver accented design of the interior surfaces and controls, and blue backlit instrument dials are stylish and functional. 

The Fit's available Display Audio touchscreen interface and leather seating (EX-L models) further increase its premium feel.

For 2017, the Fit again aligns with other Honda models by being offered in LX, EX, and EX-L trims, each with a higher spec than the previous equivalent trim. Standard features on all Fit models include auto on-off headlights, LED brake lights, Bluetooth® HandsFreeLink® and a center storage console with armrest. 
Items such as Smart Entry Push Button Start, a one-touch operated moonroof, 7-inch touchscreen Display Audio with next-generation HondaLink, and heated leather seats are among the upgrades available in the Fit.
Safety Performance

The Fit also features a long list of standard safety features. That list includes Vehicle Stability Assist™ (VSA®) with traction control, side curtain airbags with rollover sensor, Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD), Brake Assist, and Honda's next-generation Advanced Compatibility Engineering™ (ACE™) body structure. 

The Fit also received the 5-Star Overall Vehicle Score from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Standard drive-assistive features on all trims include a multi-angle rearview camera with guidelines; the Honda LaneWatch™ display is standard on EX and above trims.

Pricing and EPA Ratings

2017 Fit Pricing and EPA Fuel Economy Ratings
EPA Fuel Economy Ratings2(city/highway/combined)
            29  /  36  /  32
            33  /  40  /  36
            29  /  36  /  32
            32  /  37  /  34
            32  /  37  /  34
EX-L w/ Navi
            32  /  37  /  34