After a strong performance in the first half of 2017, the BMW Group is now focusing on expanding electric mobility and automated driving. The BMW iNEXT will set new standards in both of these fields and will act as a technological spearhead. It will be manufactured at Plant Dingolfing from 2021, underlining the significance of Germany for future technologies and as a centre of competence for electric mobility. Germany will also serve as a key location for the development of autonomous driving. As part of the co-operation arrangements established with Intel and Mobileye, the first engineers from all three companies will move to the new development campus in Unterschleißheim near Munich in the course of the current year. Moreover, one year since the co-operation began, a number of other prestigious partners including Delphi and Continental have also joined the project.
“Huge changes lie ahead in the world of mobility and it is vital that our company is in top shape to tackle them. Strategy NUMBER ONE > NEXT sharpens our innovative edge and strengthens our core business,” commented Harald Krüger, Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG. “We are advancing rapidly in the field of electric mobility, today and into the future. No established competitor has been able to put as many electrified vehicles onto the roads as we have. In the future, our flexible architecture will enable us to decide quickly which and how many models to build with combustion, plug-in hybrid or all-electric drive systems. This flexibility in our product range is our key to success in times of volatility and uncertain forecasts.”
Toyota has announced manufacturer’s suggested retail prices (MSRP) for the 2018 Yaris hatchback.
The fuel-efficient Yaris is the Toyota brand’s least expensive model, yet it is equipped with many standard safety and convenience features. Among the many standard carryover safety features is Toyota Safety Sense- C™ (TSS-C), a trio of driver assist technologies that help drivers get from point “A” to point “B” with safety assurance. TSS-C technologies include Toyota’s Pre-Collision System, Lane Departure Alert and Automatic High Beams.
Yaris offers both three-door and five-door body styles in two grades, L and LE, in addition to the five-door Sporty SE. Manual transmission is available on the three-door L and the five-door SE.
Designed and assembled in France, the Yaris builds on its European styling to add a sportier and more dynamic look for 2018. The updates start with both the L and LE grades receiving a new bold front fascia with a new grille and chrome accents. The SE grade will receive a sporty front fascia that features a new piano black mesh pattern grille surrounded with a chrome accent.
The refined new front is complemented by a modern restyled rear to help provide a wider look and stance. The rear design includes wider, horizontal tail lamps that are integrated into the rear door, new rear bumper with styling that is more in harmony with the rear door design, and a new lower bumper garnish with side reflectors to help portray a broader stance.
The SE is topped off with standard 16-inch Machined Alloy Wheels with dark accents.
Inside, the 2018 Yaris receives substantial audio and convenience updates that starts with the L grade upgrading to a standard tilt, three-spoke steering wheel that now includes audio controls. Both the L and LE grades will now receive the same Sport analog instrumentation currently on the SE grade. The sporty IP includes speedometer, tachometer and fuel gauge; LCD display with odometer, tripmeters,
clock, outside temperature, current/average fuel economy, distance to empty, average speed and shift position; ECO-driving indicator and warning messages (automatic transmission only).
The Yaris will be available in eight exterior colors including two new selections: Blue Eclipse (replacing Blue Streak Metallic), and two-tone Blue Eclipse with a Black Sand Pearl Roof (replacing two-tone Crushed Ice with Black Sand Pearl Roof). Carryover colors will include: Super White, Classic Silver Metallic, Magnetic Gray Metallic, Black Sand Pearl, Ruby Flare Pearl, and the two-tone Ruby Flare Pearl with Black Sand Pearl Roof.
The exterior color palette will be complemented with interior fabric choices of combined Black and Gray on L and LE grades, and all-Black on the SE grade.
Audio upgrades abound with the 2018 Yaris as both the L and LE grades will now be equipped standard with the same Entune™ Audio system available on many other Toyota models. The Entune Multimedia Bundle consists of:
- a 6.1-inch touch-screen display, AM/FM CD player, MP3/WMA playback capability, six speakers, auxiliary audio jack, USB 2.0 port with iPod® connectivity and control, advanced voice recognition, hands-free phone capability, phone book access and music streaming via Bluetooth® wireless technology, and Siri® Eyes Free
The SE grade leaps to the next level as it will come standard with Entune Audio Plus with Connected Navigation App. This upgraded multimedia system consists of:
- a 7.0-inch high resolution touch-screen display, AM/FM tuner, MP3/WMA playback capability, six speakers, auxiliary audio jack, USB 2.0 port with iPod® connectivity and control, advanced voice recognition, hands-free phone capability, phone book access and music streaming via Bluetooth® wireless technology, Connected Navigation Scout® GPS Link App, Siri® Eyes Free, SiriusXM® Satellite Radio with three-month complimentary SiriusXM All Access Trial and Gracenote® album cover art, HD Radio, HD Radio™ traffic and weather in major metro areas
The MSRP for the 2018 Yaris hatchback L grades will range from $15,635 for the three-door with a manual transmission to $16,760 for the five-door with an automatic transmission, reflecting an increase of $385.
The Yaris LE grades will receive an MSRP of $17,285 for the three-door with an automatic transmission and $17,660 for the five-door automatic, both prices reflect an increase of $375.
The sporty Yaris SE grades receives an MSRP of $18,260 for the five-door with a manual transmission and $19,060 for the five-door automatic. Both prices reflect an increase of $1,060.
The MSRP’s for the 2018 Yaris Hatchback do not include the delivery, processing, and handling (DPH) fee of $885. The DPH fee for vehicles distributed by Southeast Toyota (SET) and Gulf States Toyota (GST) may vary.
The 2018 Yaris will be reaching Toyota dealerships this summer.
-- Press release courtesy of Toyota
BMW announced at the 2017 Auto Shanghai the first-ever BMW M4 CS, an exclusive special-edition model produced by BMW M GmbH. The BMW M4 CS lines-up between the BMW M4 Coupe with Competition Package and the uncompromisingly track-focused BMW M4 GTS. The 3.0-liter high-performance engine raises the output of the BMW M4 Coupe by 29 horsepower, to 454 hp. The state-of-the-art M TwinPower Turbo technology allows the BMW M4 CS to dip below the four-second mark for the 0 to 60 mph sprint, stopping the clock at 3.8 seconds (preliminary) while the standard M Driver’s Package raises the electronically limited top speed to 174 mph.
With its two mono-scroll turbochargers, charge air cooler, High Precision Injection, VALVETRONIC variable valve timing and Double-VANOS fully variable camshaft timing, the inline 6-cylinder engine aims at higher echelons of performance and efficiency. More aggressively styled, the first ever BMW M4 CS continues the decades-long tradition of successful M special editions, which began in 1988 with the E30 BMW M3 Evolution. The first ever BMW M4 CS will be built at the BMW plant in Munich and will be available at U.S. dealerships in 2018 with pricing announced closer to market launch.
Chrysler has announced the addition of the Touring Plus model to the 2017 Chrysler Pacifica lineup.
“The 2017 Chrysler Pacifica arrived in dealerships a year ago, and in that time, it has both resonated with our current minivan customers and brought new minivan buyers to the brand,” said , Head of Passenger Car Brands – Dodge, SRT, Chrysler and Fiat, FCA – North America. “The addition of the new Touring Plus model to the Pacifica lineup builds on this success, delivering another option to meet the needs and price point of more customers.”
The Pacifica Touring Plus model includes features like a power liftgate, three-zone automatic temperature control, premium fascia, projector headlamps, LED tail lamps, fog lamps, second- and third-row sunshades and universal garage door opener.
When the all-new 2018 Volkswagen Atlas and 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan arrive in dealerships over the next few months, they will carry the best transferable bumper-to-bumper warranty among SUVs in America: Volkswagen is offering a six-year or 72,000-mile (whichever occurs first) New Vehicle Limited Warranty, with coverage that’s transferable beyond the first owner.
“We specifically designed and built the all-new Atlas and Tiguan for American customers. This warranty further addresses the needs of American buyers head-on,” said Hinrich J. Woebcken, President and Chief Executive Officer of Volkswagen Group of America. “We’re confident in the reliability and workmanship of these SUVs, and we want our customers to be confident in their purchase. We believe this warranty will lead to reduced cost of ownership for Volkswagen owners.”
Mercedes-Benz USA has announced pricing for the 2018 AMG GT R Coupe. Arriving in U.S. dealers this summer, the AMG GT R will start at $157,000*. The new Mercedes-AMG GT R features a front-mid-engine with a transaxle, handcrafted AMG 4.0L V8 biturbo engine rated at 577 hp, extensively modified suspension, active aerodynamics, active rear-wheel steering, nine-way adjustable traction control and intelligent lightweight construction throughout.
Mercedes-AMG continues to grow and is expanding the top end of its product range with the introduction of the new AMG GT R. Starting at $157,000 in the United States, the AMG GT R features extensive amounts of motorsport technology developed on the most demanding race track in the world—the Nürburgring Nordschleife.
Already living up to its "Beast of the Green Hell" nickname, the AMG GT R is proving to be a record-setter in the Mercedes-AMG family. In an independent test drive conducted by the magazine "sport auto," on the Nürburgring Nordschleife, the AMG GT R was faster than any other rear-wheel-drive road-going sports car ever tested with a laptime of just 7:10.9.
Key data at a glance:
|Mercedes-AMG GT R Coupe|
|Engine||Handcrafted AMG 4.0L V8 biturbo with dry-sump lubrication|
|Output||577 hp at 6,250 rpm|
|Peak torque||516 lb-ft at 1,900-5,500 rpm|
|Driven wheels||Rear-wheel drive|
|Transmission||AMG SPEEDSHIFT DCT 7-speed transmission|
|Weight||3,428 lbs (Euro spec; US spec may vary)|
|Power-to-weight ratio||5.94 lbs/horsepower (Euro spec; US spec may vary)|
|Acceleration 0-60 mph||3.5 sec (est.)|
|Top speed||198 mph|
*Price excludes $995 destination and delivery charge
-- Press release courtesy of Mercedes-Benz
Lexus has announced the refreshed NX luxury compact crossover will make its global debut at the upcoming Auto Shanghai 2017.
As the nimble, urban crossover of the Lexus lineup, NX has exceeded customers’ expectations globally since the model’s launch three years ago. With its blend of expressive styling, a spacious package that offers comfort and safety, along with a superior dynamic driving experience, NX succeeded in helping Lexus grow globally. Now, with an updated exterior design, and interior enhancements that add convenience and functionality, the NX is poised to meet the needs of global luxury consumers.
The Lexus press conference will take place on April 19 in Hall 6.1, National Exhibition and Convention Center (Shanghai).
-- Press release courtesy of Lexus