Ever since Aston Martin became independent in 2007, it has undergone almost a complete makeover. The British firm hired a new chief executive, signed a new engine deal with Mercedes-AMG, and has been working on a new platform. The long-dead but iconic Lagonda marque has been revived, hinting at a new design direction. It all sounds good on paper, but so far, nothing concrete has come out of the aforementioned changes.
Well, that is until now. A test mule has been spotted, which could be hiding the said new platform under the widened Vantage shell. The mule may also pack the new Mercedes engine, although both rumours are unconfirmed at the moment.
However, the prototype may hint at the future of Aston Martin. With a total revamp and a new powerunit, this radical makeover may be extremely thrilling for potential and existing customers alike.
Unlike its rivals from Coventry, Mercedes has no plans to soften the looks of the iconic G-Wagen. The 2016 refresh comes after regulatory changes have forced Mercedes to alter several aspects of the vehicle. That said, the overall brutalist design aesthetic will march on, for Daimler AG boss Dieter Zetsch believes that the G-Class shouldn’t become a quasi-offroader, it has pedigree and will always be the original German offroader.
Rumours suggest Mercedes may use the 2016 refresh to widen and lower the car to keep it relevant in the highly competitive market today. Currently, the Range Rover is their only true competitior, but that is set to change as the likes of Bentley and others start to manufacture their own luxury SUVs.
Researches from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have figured out a way to cure congestion without resorting to the usage of expensive road pricing systems. Dubbed ‘Roadrunner’, it is a smart phone-enabled platform which enables cars to 'talk' to each other on the move. Currently, the system has proven to be more efficient than the existing ERP system in simulations.
The increase in efficiency is attributed to the active monitoring and controlling of the number of vehicles in congested regions. The system works by issuing tokens to each vehicle, which is then taken away again when that vehicle leaves the affected area. The freed up token is then passed on to another car. Should a car fail to get a token, RoadRunner will suggest an alternative route to prevent further congestion.
GrabTaxi is a smart phone taxi booking app, which, as its name suggests, helps users reserve and call for cabs. Since its inception last October, more have been using the app, so much so that the usage rate has gone up by a hundredfold; an estimated 1,300 taxi bookings are made via the app today, compared to the measly 10 from last October.
The firm has more to celebrate, for it has secured a third round of funding from capitalists, which has increased its total revenue for 2014 to approximately S$114 million.
Observers estimate the app to outpace ComfortDelGro's current booking volume. For each booking, GrabTaxi gets a cut. The firm earns $0.30 and $0.60 respectively for every current and advance booking a cabby accepts, less than half of what their rivals are charging.
Toyota is one of Japan’s best-known businesses, but its status as a global manufacturer is witnessed by the fact its vehicle production in Europe has passed nine million units. Local production has flourished to the point where two out of every three Toyota vehicles sold in Europe is built there, too.
From Portugal in the west, to Russia in the east, there are six Toyota vehicle plants and 3 power train factories in Europe. In UK, Toyota Manufacturing has been producing cars in Derbyshire and engines at Deeside in North Wales since 1992. The Derbyshire operation currently builds all versions of Auris and Avensis, and has the distinction of being Toyota’s first centre for hybrid vehicle production in Europe.
Ital Auto has been the official importer of Ferrari to Singapore since 2009. In true Ferrari style, exclusive guests and Ferrari owners were invited to the party themed "Passione in Rosso" (Passion in Red), to celebrate the 5th Anniversary, at the newly refurbished Clifford Pier restaurant at the Fullerton Bay Hotel last month, just days before the exhilarating race began for the 2014 F1 Singapore Airlines Singapore grand Prix.
Doused in brilliant red lights, the charming and elegant venue lit up in the iconic Ferrari red with one of the Ferrari models from the fleet – F12berlinetta in Rosso, sitting proudly at the lobby, emanating a beguiling appeal to invite all the invited guests to capture a picture with a bubbly in hand as they enjoyed the cocktail reception, beckoning an exciting evening ahead.
The LTA has rolled out their new Silver Zone programme. This programme, which was announced earlier this year, will see a slew of senior-friendly road safety features be instated in 5 locations with high population of the elderly. The first estate to receive the Silver Zone make over is the Bukit Merah Estate, and it is hoped that the new alterations will enhance road safety for vulnerable road users such as senior pedestrians.
The Silver Zone has been fitted with road safety features that remind motorists to slow down and keep a careful lookout for pedestrians, as well as urge senior pedestrians to be vigilant when crossing the road. The features are based on best practices overseas, such as in South Korea and New York City, where similar zones have been established. Their entrances are treated with a series of special features, also known as the Silver Zone Gateway, to alert motorists to slow down and look out for pedestrians, along with signs and rumble strips to remind motorists to slow down and keep to 40 km/h. That, along with road alterations, should mean pedestrians are kept safe.