New Mercedes-Benz G-Class taking it to the next level.

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New Mercedes-Benz G-Class taking it to the next level.

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Story & Photographs by Mercedes-Benz

The new Mercedes-Benz G-Class presents itself in top form. Whether on or off the road and whatever the operating conditions, the off-road vehicle impresses with its performance, cutting-edge assistance systems, outstanding handling, and safety. At the same time, the new suspension, the DYNAMIC SELECT driving modes, the "G-Mode" and the three 100-percent differential locks enhance not only ride comfort but also agility – on any surface. The new G-Class will be celebrating its world premiere at the 2018 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, and will go on sale in the U.S. by late 2018.

"The new G-Class continues to set the bar higher in all relevant areas – in terms of performance both on and off the road as well as with regard to comfort and telematics. Our 'longest-serving' model series is therefore ideally equipped to continue its success story. In short, the new 'G' is still a 'G', only better," stresses Ola Källenius, Member of the Board of Daimler AG responsible for Group Research and Mercedes-Benz Cars Development.

Working on the development of the new G-Class was extremely challenging for the team. "Enhancing an icon such as the G-Class in technological terms was both a challenge and an opportunity at the same time. Each part and every bolt came under close scrutiny," explains Dr. Gunnar Güthenke, Head of the Off-Road Product Group at Mercedes-Benz. "With the body, our main focus was on increasing the vehicle rigidity and the connections between the suspension and drivetrain with the ladder-type frame."

The new G-Class is standard equipped with a host of new features such as LED headlamps, advanced driver assistance systems, a high-quality interior with leather seats and a new suspension. Additionally, options such as the Exclusive Interior Plus with diamond-stitched leather provide even more customization.

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The G-Class, reinterpreted for today

The G-Class, the luxury off-road vehicle from Mercedes-Benz, has long been considered a design icon. Its external appearance has not changed significantly since 1979. Iconic elements continue to serve very specific purposes, now as then, and to give the G-Class its unique appearance. These features are still found in the new G-Class: the distinctive door handle and the characteristic closing sound, the robust exterior protective strip, the exposed spare wheel on the rear door and the prominent indicator lights. Special features like these in conjunction with the off- roader's angular lines define its special distinctive look.

The enhanced design of the G-Class follows the philosophy of Sensual Purity and at the same time remains true to the character of the original. As a result, the door hinges positioned on the outside and the surface-mounted bonnet are carried over to the new generation. With the latest update, the off-road icon - which has received continuous technical enhancements over the decades but visually has hardly changed - is making the leap into a new era – both in terms of technology and form. The new G-Class is 2.1-in longer and 4.8-in wider and now has even greater presence on and off-road.

More than ever, the new G-Class appears to be cast from a single piece. All surfaces have a more taut design and have even more tension, while the surface quality has been taken to an even higher level, resulting in narrower, more precise gaps. In addition, the wheel arches and bumpers form a more integral part of the body.

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Interior: authentic icon

While the exterior maintains its classic iconic look, the interior of the G-Class has undergone a fundamental redesign which reinterprets the genes of the classic vehicle to reflect the exterior. With its off-road character and world-class luxury appointments, the G-Class has always combined two extremes into a harmonious symbiosis. Every detail is hand-crafted with the utmost care, using only the finest high-quality materials.

Getting in the G-Class reveals that numerous design features from the exterior have been transposed into the interior. For instance, the shape of the round headlamps is reflected in the side air vents. Or the design of the iconic indicators, found again in the shape of the loudspeakers. Hallmarks of the G-Class include the grab handle in front of the front passenger seat and the chrome-highlighted switches for the three differential locks. Both have been meticulously optimized and retained as characteristic features.

The very clearly arranged and completely redesigned instrument panel features timeless tube-look analogue round dials as standard. In other words, fans of classic round instruments will certainly not be disappointed in the new G-Class. As in the new E-Class and S-Class, an instrument cluster in the form of a large display showing digital instruments in the driver's direct field of vision and a central display above the center console is available as an option. In this case the two 12.3-inch displays blend visually into a Widescreen Cockpit beneath a fully bonded glass panel. Drivers can choose between three different styles for the displays – "Classic," "Sport" and "Progressive" – and also select relevant information and views according to their individual needs.

Thanks to haptic impulses and audible feedback from the on-board speakers, drivers can use the touchpad with controller in the center console without taking their eyes off the road. The input options are rounded off by shortcut keys in front of the controller for frequently used operating tasks, and by the optional control panel for the driving assistance systems above the rotary light switch. The driver sits up close to the windscreen and enjoys good all-round visibility from behind the wheel.

More space for all

The revised dimensions of the now larger G-Class benefit not only the driver and front passenger, but also the passengers in the second row. Key data at a glance:

DescriptionDifference (vs. previous gen)

Legroom in the front+1.5 in (38 mm)

Legroom in the rear+5.9 in (150 mm)

Shoulder room in front+1.5 in (38 mm)

Shoulder room in rear+1.1 in (27 mm)

Elbow room in front+2.7 in (68 mm)

Elbow room in rear+2.2 in (56 mm)

The rear seats can be folded down to 60, 40 or 100 percent. The seats in the G-Class are equipped as standard with numerous convenience functions and are ergonomically designed, thus providing enhanced seating comfort and lateral support. Features include the Memory function for the driver's seat, seat heating in the front and rear as well as luxury head restraints in the front. Ride comfort can be further enhanced with the optionally available Active Multicontour Seat Package. In addition to the special multicontour seats, this encompasses features such as various massage functions, climate-controlled seats and rapid seat heating. This variant also offers electrically adjustable lumbar supports for the driver and front passenger. The side sections of the seat cushions and backrests of the active multicontour seats include integrated air chambers that fill or empty continuously depending on the driving dynamics, thus providing better support for the seating positions of driver and front passenger and, for example, offering more lateral support during cornering. The front seats of the Active Multicontour Seat Package are recommended by experts from the German spinal health organization "Aktion Gesunder Rücken e.V."

Off-road: the legend surpasses itself

The primary goal of development was to redefine the quality of handling both on and off the road. This goal has been achieved: the new G-Class performs even better off-road, while on the road it is significantly more agile, dynamic and comfortable than its predecessor. Thanks to its standard ladder-type frame, the three 100-percent differential locks and LOW RANGE off-road gear reduction, the G remains a true G.

The new suspension emerged from the collaboration between Mercedes-Benz GmbH and Mercedes-AMG GmbH. The result is an independent suspension with double-wishbone front axle in combination with a rigid rear axle. As part of their work, the engineers had the task of fighting for every inch and millimeter, because off-road capability requires maximum ground clearance. The raising of the axles makes a decisive contribution in this respect, while requiring a strut tower brace in the engine compartment to achieve the ruggedness objectives.

The components of the double-wishbone front axle are directly mounted to the ladder-type frame without a subframe. The lower wishbone's attachment points on the frame in Z-axis are positioned as high up as possible. This arrangement ensures good drivability beyond the asphalt. Specifically for the G-Class, the new front axle is designed in such a robust way that the off-road performance and off-road capabilities of its predecessor are improved.

Equipped in this way and with a ground clearance of 10.6-in to the front axle gear, the G-Class provides plenty of potential for maximum assertiveness and driving pleasure in harsh terrain. The figures speak for themselves (below figures vs. previous gen):

  • Slope climbing ability of up to 100% on suitable surfaces
  • Ground clearance between axles now 9.5 inches (+ 6 mm)
  • Maximum fording depth now 27.6 inches when driving through water and mud (+3.9 inches)
  • Breakover angle of 26°, (+ 1°)
  • Angle of departure: 30°, angle of approach: 31° (+ 1°)
  • Break-over angle: 26°, (+ 1°)

Thanks to the independent suspension, it was possible to improve the rigidity of the body's front end. A strut tower brace, known as a suspension bridge, now connects the front strut towers, which increases the torsional rigidity of the ladder-type frame.

At the rear, in contrast to the predecessor, the new rigid axle is controlled by four trailing arms on each side and a Panhard rod. This makes normal driving on the road even more comfortable. In terrain, the rear spring jounce of 3.2-in and rebound of 5.6-in plus the ground clearance of 9.5-in to the rear axle gear help to ensure a safe ride even in extreme situations.

À la carte: "Comfort," "Sport," "Individual" or "Eco"

DYNAMIC SELECT is now available with up to five driving modes for the G-Class. This allows adjusting the vehicle characteristics in seconds at the touch of a button, as the system modifies the characteristics of the engine, transmission, suspension, steering and assistance systems at the driver's behest. The four programs "Comfort," "Sport," "Eco" and "Individual" can be set conveniently via the DYNAMIC SELECT rocker switch. In "ECO" mode, a particularly fuel-optimized driving style is possible. In "Sport" mode, on the other hand, the shift points of the automatic transmission, the throttle response of the engine, and the parameters of the electric steering system and the exhaust flap are changed. "Individual" allows drivers to configure their own preferred vehicle settings.

DYNAMIC SELECT provides a host of options in combination with the new suspension with optional Adaptive Damping System. The driver is then also able to modify the vehicle's damping characteristics in Sport and Comfort modes using the DYNAMIC SELECT switch.

Put simply, the G-Class detects the particular condition of the road and sets the appropriate damping characteristics, so that the damping in terrain is stiffer, for example. In contrast, in Sport mode the G-Class boasts a more agile response when driving on the road.

The new "G-Mode" paves the way where there is none

One of the prerequisites for the improved off-road handling characteristics is the new "G-Mode." The G-Class changes to "G-Mode" independently of the chosen driving mode as soon as one of the three differential locks has been activated or the LOW RANGE off-road reduction gear has been engaged. This off-road mode adapts the adjustable damping of the chassis and the steering as well as the accelerator characteristic, avoids unnecessary gear shifts and thus ensures optimum control and maximum off-road capability. A small "G" icon discreetly lights up in the instrument cluster. The "G" conquers rough ground so easily that the driver is able to enjoy inch-perfect maneuvering even in the steepest terrain and receive excellent feedback on the traction capacity of the surface.

On-road: agile, comfortable, superior

The specification for the G-Class not only included solidness and superiority in terrain, but also greater driving dynamics and comfort on paved roads. Thanks to the new front axle design, the on-road performance of the G-Class has therefore been enhanced at the same time. On the road, the "G" is as agile as it is comfortable and provides the driver with a better steering feel. The off-roader stays on track more solidly, and is agile and effortless when driving off-road.

Using a digital prototype, the developers simulated the service life of individual components and closed systems to find out in which places it would be possible to make use of lighter raw materials. The diet worked, as the G-Class has shed around 375 lbs. The recipe for success: a new mix of materials comprising strong, high- strength, ultra-high-strength steels and aluminum, as well as improved production processes at the Magna Steyr plant in Austria. The rigid body shell is now made of a variety of steel grades, while the fenders, hood and doors are made of aluminum.

To be able to retain the door hinges and handles typical of the G-Class, the developers modified these to suit the new aluminum design. The A- and B-pillars are made of high-strength steel due to their load-bearing function. However, less mass in no way translates into less stability – on the contrary, it was possible to increase the torsional rigidity of the frame, body shell and body mounts. Alongside improvements to the natural driving dynamics and comfort, this also results in enhanced quality in terms of noise levels, among other things, with the positive effect of significantly less noise and vibrations being noticeable in the interior when driving.

Powerful and efficient

In the new G 550 a high-performance 4.0-liter V8 gasoline engine ensures powerful propulsion. The new biturbo produces an output of 416 hp and a maximum torque of 450 lb-ft at 2,000 to 4,750 rpm, which is carried over from the previous model.

New automatic transmission on board

For the transfer of power, the 9G-TRONIC automatic transmission with torque converter was specifically adapted to meet the needs of the off-road icon. The developers have managed to reduce the shift and response times of the 9-speed transmission by means of a dedicated software application. The wide transmission ratio not only makes driving quieter and more comfortable especially at low engine speeds, it simultaneously also contributes to reducing fuel consumption.

As direct as possible, as indirect as necessary

As standard the G-Class is now fitted with electromechanical rack-and-pinion steering, which now allows driving assistance systems such as Parking Assist to be implemented. In addition, the electromechanical steering uses less energy than a hydraulically assisted steering system. Depending on the driving mode, one of three sets of steering characteristic lines, namely Comfort, Sport and Off-road, comes into effect. This ensures a comfortable or sporty steering feel on the road, but also straightforward and precise feedback in unpaved and demanding terrain - always paired with sufficient steering power assistance. In a nutshell: as direct as possible, as indirect as necessary.

Stronger than time

The G-Class is the top model among luxury off-road vehicles. It is not only the passenger car model series with the longest production run in the history of Mercedes-Benz by far, but also the forefather of all SUVs to bear the three-pointed star – this is why all Mercedes SUV models feature the upper-case G in their name.

What began in 1972 with a collaboration agreement between then Daimler-Benz AG and Steyr-Daimler-Puch in the Austrian city of Graz is now a story peppered with superlatives and significant milestones. The first concept to be developed was already different. The team designed a vehicle which impressed with superior off- road capability, while at the same time appealing to customers as a full-featured and safe vehicle suitable for recreational purposes. All-wheel drive and 100-percent differential locks have also been part of the "G" since that time, as has the robust ladder-type frame.

At the time of its market launch, in the spring of 1979, it was available with a choice of four engine variants covering a performance range from of
71 hp to 154 hp. Customers had the option of a Cabriolet with a short wheelbase or Station Wagon models with short or long wheelbase. In 1989 the vehicles of the model series 463 marked the beginning of an evolutionary process for the off- roader that was not just about keeping pace with technical progress. It was an evolution that also brought a steadily expanding fan base and emphasized its character as an exclusive vehicle for any occasion. And, since 1993, a vehicle with an official name: the G-Class.

The G-Class models used for the "Popemobile" are famous around the world. The off-road Mercedes-Benz 230 G painted in mother of pearl with a transparent special body accompanied Pope John Paul II on numerous journeys from 1980.

The 25th anniversary of the G-Class was marked by the arrival of a very special model on the market, honed by Mercedes-AMG: the G 55 AMG Kompressor. Its eight-cylinder power unit (469 hp, 516 lb-ft of torque) gave the robust off-roader an unprecedented level of performance and demonstrated the tremendous potential of the G-Class.

The G 550 4x42 of 2015 added not only a luxurious interior to the equation, but also a ground clearance of 17.7-in and impressive on-road performance. Since 2015, the designo manufaktur range has been providing customers with the option

Daimler Communications, 70546 Stuttgart, Germany Mercedes-Benz – A Daimler Brand

to take a G-Class and make it their own individual "G" – with exclusive equipment variants that are perfectly coordinated with each other.

The iconic G-Class reinvented itself once more in 2017 with the Mercedes- Maybach G 650 Landaulet (not available for U.S. market). With its superlative V12 engine, portal axles, electric fabric top and exclusive appointments in the rear compartment, this very special all-terrain vehicle, which is limited to 99 units, meets the expectations of customers who demand the very highest standards of their vehicle, offering arguably the most exclusive form of open-air driving pleasure.

The summer of 2017 saw the 300,000th G-Class roll off the assembly line in Graz – a European-spec Mercedes-Benz G 500 in designo Mauritius blue metallic with black leather seats and contrasting white topstitching. Equipped with a range of off-road features including all-terrain tires mounted on black 16-inch rims and a sturdy roof rack, the anniversary vehicle embarked this summer on new adventures. G-Class fans around the world determined the vehicle specification by voting for their favorite equipment and appointments on the official G-Class Facebook page. You can also follow the future road trips of the 300,000th G-Class on social networks.

The 2019 Mercedes-Benz G-Class will be celebrating its world premiere at the 2018 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, and will go on sale in the U.S. by late 2018.

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Ford Ranger has Returned!

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Ford Ranger has Returned!

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Finally, Ford has brought back the Ford Ranger.  Schedule to be available early part of 2019.  This vehicle will add to a popular segment in the Mid size truck department.  Certainly will give a good run with the Chevrolet Colorado, GMC Canyon Honda Ridgeline and the Toyota Tacoma.  

  • Built Ford Tough: Ford answers the call from truck customers looking for an affordable, rugged, and maneuverable midsize pickup that’s Built Ford Tough; torture-tested alongside Ford F-150 trucks, Ranger quality starts with a rugged high-strength steel frame backbone, proven Ford-built 2.3-liter EcoBoost® engine and class-exclusive 10-speed automatic transmission
  • Ready for adventure with innovative technology: New features make driving easier and more fun, both on- and off-road; available FX4 Off-Road Package adds protective skid plates, upgraded tires, off-road-tuned shocks and suspension, while Terrain Management System™ and Trail Control™ help navigate challenging conditions; a suite of innovative technologies includes standard Automatic Emergency Braking to help avoid collisions
  • Strong new choice for midsize truck fans: Ranger brings American truck lovers an all-new choice; production begins late this year at Ford’s Michigan Assembly Plant as the U.S. industry sees continued growth in midsize pickups

Story by Ford Media.

DETROIT, Jan. 14, 2018 – Ford today reveals the all-new 2019 Ford Ranger for North America, bringing midsize truck fans a new choice from America’s truck sales leader – one that’s engineered Built Ford Tough and packed with driver-assist technologies to make driving easier whether on- or off-road.

Production begins late this year at Ford’s Michigan Assembly Plant as customer demand is growing for midsize trucks. U.S. sales are up 83 percent since 2014 as a new generation of midsize truck buyers seek more maneuverable, fuel-efficient pickups.

The 2019 Ford Ranger answers the call with an all-new midsize pickup featuring a new exterior design, chassis and powertrain developed specifically for North American truck customers. Powerful and strong, with a high-strength steel frame, Ranger is equipped with a proven 2.3-liter EcoBoost® engine mated to the only 10-speed automatic transmission in the segment.

“Ranger has always held a special place in the hearts of truck fans,” said Hau Thai-Tang, Ford executive vice president, Product Development and Purchasing. “The all-new Ranger is designed for today’s midsize truck buyer, delivering even more utility, capability and technology for those who blend city living with more off-the-grid adventures on weekends.”

Ranger comes in entry-level XL, mid-level XLT and high-level Lariat trim series with available Chrome and Sport appearance and FX Off-Road packages, and in SuperCab or SuperCrew cab configurations.

Built Ford Tough

Built Ford Tough is engineered in Ranger’s DNA – from its high-strength steel frame backbone to its frame-mounted steel front and rear bumpers. Ford engineers put Ranger through the same torture testing as the legendary F-150 goes through.

Even its design is tough. Ranger’s muscular body features a high beltline that emphasizes strength, while a raked grille and windshield provide an athletic appearance – designed to aid in aerodynamics and reduce wind noise. Short overhangs are functional off-road for clearing obstacles.

From the rear, the Ranger nameplate stamped in the tailgate conveys strength, and the tailgate itself is designed to handle people and cargo. A rugged steel bumper with an available integrated trailer hitch receiver helps make towing campers, ATVs or watercraft a breeze.

Inside, Ranger blends comfort and functionality with room for up to five people, their gear and accessories. A center stack includes an 8-inch touch screen for the available SYNC® 3 system, while the instrument cluster features dual LCD productivity screens for real-time vehicle, navigation and audio information.

Ranger’s twin-power dome hood houses its 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine designed for efficiency and capability thanks to direct fuel injection, a twin-scroll turbocharger and 16-valve design. For added durability, the engine features a forged-steel crankshaft and connecting rods, and chain-driven dual overhead cams.

“Ranger’s proven 2.3-liter EcoBoost provides a torque target on par with competing V6 engines, but with the efficiency of a four-cylinder,” said Thai-Tang. “When you pair that with its 10-speed transmission, you’ve got one of the most versatile, powerful and efficient powertrains in the segment.”

 

Adventure-ready

Ranger is designed for a new generation of midsize truck customers who head off-road to recharge.

Ranger prioritizes ground clearance to help climb over off-road obstacles. The FX4 Off-Road Package provides additional trail capability with off-road-tuned shocks, all-terrain tires, a frame-mounted heavy-gauge steel front bash plate, frame-mounted skid plates and FX4 badging.

To give customers a great all-terrain driving experience, Ranger’s FX4 Off-Road Package features an innovative Terrain Management System™ similar to the F-150 Raptor’s. It includes four distinct drive modes – normal; grass, gravel and snow; mud and ruts; and sand. The system can shift on the fly to automatically change throttle responsiveness, transmission gearing and vehicle controls to tailor traction, driveability and performance to any given terrain or weather condition.     

The FX4 Off-Road Package introduces Ford’s all-new Trail Control™ technology. Like cruise control for the highway but designed for low-speed, rugged terrain, Trail Control takes over acceleration and braking – sending power and braking to each individual wheel to allow drivers to focus on steering along the course.

Power is distributed through Dana® AdvanTEK® independent front and solid rear axles on both 2WD and 4WD models with an available electronic-locking rear axle (standard on FX2 and FX4) for increased all-terrain traction. Ranger four-wheel-drive versions feature 2-high, 4-high and 4-low.

 

Innovative technology

Ranger incorporates smart driver-assist, passenger convenience and connectivity technologies. Advanced driver-assist technologies include standard Automatic Emergency Braking, while Lane Keeping Assist, Lane Departure Warning, a Reverse Sensing System and class-exclusive Blind Spot Information System with trailer coverage are standard on XLT and Lariat trim levels. Additional driver-assist technologies standard on Lariat include Pedestrian Detection and Adaptive Cruise Control.

Available SYNC® 3 features Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, Ford+Alexa personal assistant functionality and optional navigation. An available FordPass™ Connect 4G LTE modem provides Wi-Fi access for up to 10 devices. Available AC power outlets allow for charging of laptops and USB outlets provide more options for passengers to connect. Available B&O PLAY premium audio is specially tuned for the Ranger cab to deliver a rich and engaging listening experience.

Additional features include optional LED headlamps and taillamps. Optional exterior lighting includes puddle lamps and lighting for the cargo bed, while Ford’s available Smart Trailer Tow connector alerts drivers to faulty trailer connections. 

 

 

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2019 Chevrolet Silverado - NAIAS Media debut

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2019 Chevrolet Silverado - NAIAS Media debut

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Write up By Chevrolet - Video by Car Questions. 

All new 2019 Chevrolet Silverado was revealed last night.  The highly anticipated upgrade on the Silverado and finally it's here.  Below is the press release from Chevrolet.Media.  I am personally excited for the newly redesigned models and will be looking to purchase one of these in the near future.  

New Silverado will be available Fall of 2018

  • Most functional bed of any full-size truck, including class-leading cargo volume
  • Up to 450 pounds lighter from mixed materials use for improved performance
  • Six engine/transmission choices, including an all-new Duramax 3.0L inline-six diesel
  • Eight models, each with distinct personalities for different truck customers

DETROIT — Chevrolet introduced the next-generation Silverado today, exactly 100 years after the brand delivered its first trucks to customers in January 1918. The all-new Silverado sets the course for the next century of Chevy Trucks with the most functional bed of any full-size truck, weighs up to 450 pounds less for increased performance and offers a broad range of trims and engine/transmission combinations to help each customer find their ideal truck.

“With the all-new Silverado, we've taken the best truck on the road and made it even better,” said Mark Reuss, General Motors executive vice president of Global Product Development, Purchasing and Supply Chain. “It has a longer wheelbase, more passenger and cargo volume, and yet, thanks to our mixed materials strategy and mass reduction expertise, the new truck is 450 pounds lighter than the current model."

Larger, more functional and more capable bed

“Truck customers value capability and functionality above all else,” said Tim Herrick, executive chief engineer of Full-Size Trucks. “Every truck — including the luxurious High Country — is a work truck with a job to do. As such, we set out to create the best tool for the job at hand, one that makes work more productive and more enjoyable, no matter what they call ‘work.’’’

The bed is the defining trait of every pickup, and bed construction has long been a strength of Chevy Trucks. To improve upon that strength, the 2019 Silverado 1500 bed features:

  • Best-in-class cargo volume: The 2019 Silverado offers the most cargo volume in every bed length, with the short-box offering 63 cubic feet of volume — up to 20 percent more than a competitor’s short-box. Most of that volume was created by widening the maximum width of the bed floor nearly seven inches. Chevrolet Accessories will offer storage bins that fit over the wheel wells, offering nearly seven cubic feet of lockable cargo space for short-box models, while easily accommodating a 4 x 8 sheet of plywood flat on the cargo floor.
  • Higher-strength steel floor: As before, the Silverado has a roll-formed, high-strength steel bed floor. For 2019 a higher-grade steel is used, with yield strength increased from 340 to 500 megapascals of pressure for optimal strength and mass.
  • More and stronger tie-downs: Silverado now has 12 fixed tie-downs, and their strength has doubled to 500 pounds of force before bending. Silverado also has nine moveable tie points for even more cargo flexibility.
  • More features: Silverado will be available with a class-exclusive power up/down tailgate that can be operated from the key fob, interior button or by hand. Other changes include available task lighting, a 120-volt power outlet and larger cutouts in the class-exclusive CornerStep bumpers to better accommodate steel-toed boots.

With class-leading cargo volume and class-exclusive features, the new Silverado offers the most functional bed of any full-size truck, and more convenient hauling for cargo of virtually any size or shape.

Larger, lighter and more agile

The 2019 Silverado is larger than before, including a wheelbase that is up to 3.9 inches (100 mm) longer and an overall length that is 1.6 inches (41 mm) longer, enabling both more cargo volume and more interior room for all cab lengths. Remarkably, it’s also lighter, weighing 450 pounds (204 kg) less than today’s truck when comparing crew cab V-8 models.

The weight savings comes from extensive use of mixed materials and advanced manufacturing processes throughout the next-gen truck. This allowed Chevrolet to use the right material for the application and optimize every component for mass, durability, safety and functionality to meet our customers’ needs.

For example, the body is 88 pounds (40 kg) lighter than before due to mixed materials use. All exterior swing panels (doors, hood and tailgate) are made of aluminum while fixed panels (fenders, roof and bed) are made of steel. The underlying safety cage uses seven different grades of steel, each tailored for the specific application.

The fully boxed steel frame is also 88 pounds (40 kg) lighter than its predecessor, while offering 10 percent greater torsional rigidity. Eighty percent of the frame is made of high-strength steel varying from 2 to 5 millimeters in thickness, and every millimeter is optimized for performance using a variety of processes, including hydroforming, roll forming, conventional stamping and tailor-rolled blanking. As a result, frame sections, gauges, grades, processes and materials strategically vary to maximize strength, durability and stiffness without adding unnecessary mass.

Mixed materials also play a part in the all-new suspension. The front independent short/long arm suspension features new forged-aluminum upper control arms that are lighter and provide better wheel alignment than the stamped component they replace. The live-axle rear suspension is also redesigned, including new carbon-composite second-stage springs on LT models that save about 12 pounds (5 kg) per side over the steel springs they replace.

The 2019 Silverado will be available with six engine/transmission combinations, giving customers more combinations of performance, efficiency and value to best fit their priorities. This includes new 5.3L and 6.2L V-8s with industry-first Dynamic Fuel Management that actively shuts off any number of cylinders, in a variety of combinations, depending on immediate needs to optimize fuel economy. The result of this industry-first technology is instant power when called for, and impressive efficiency.

The Silverado will also be available with an all-new Duramax 3.0L inline-six turbo-diesel. Chevrolet offers diesel engines in more segments and models than any other brand, including Equinox, Cruze, Colorado, Express, Silverado 1500, Silverado HD and upcoming Silverado medium-duty models.  

Both the 3.0L diesel and 6.2L engines are paired with a new Hydra-Matic 10-speed automatic transmission as well as start/stop technology to improve fuel economy for optimum performance and efficiency.

No “one size fits most” trucks

“Truck customers told us they want the perfect truck for them and not a ‘one size fits most’ truck, compromised for the masses,” said Mike Simcoe, vice president, Global Design, General Motors. “That insight shaped our design strategy with eight distinct models, each with a unique personality to fit different customers, from the affordable Work Truck to the luxurious High Country.”

All models introduce a modern, powerful design with a strong dose of Chevy Truck DNA. For example, the “CHEVROLET” name stamped on the tailgate recalls iconic Chevy trucks of the 1950s and ‘60s, while the integrated dual exhausts and up to 33-inch tires reflect modern customer preferences.

The Silverado’s bold, modern design is also surprisingly aerodynamic. Key elements of the front grille are front functional air curtains, similar to those introduced on the sixth-generation Camaro, that reduce aerodynamic drag by routing air around the front wheel wells. The powerful side profile further enhances aerodynamics, including an integrated spoiler at the rear edge of the cab that directs air onto the tailgate lip, reducing wind drag from the bed. Changes like these result in a 7 percent increase in aerodynamic efficiency.

The 2019 Silverado offers eight trims (see descriptions, next page), designed for three distinct buyer profiles:

  • “High Value” customers want the capability of a full-size truck at a great value.
  • “High Volume” customers represent the heart of the truck market, requiring the capability of a full-size truck as well as the creature comforts of a passenger vehicle.
  • “High Feature” customers represent the fastest-growing part of the truck market and want luxury-car refinement and appointments without sacrificing capability or durability.

The eight trims also reflect another key differentiator for truck buyers: chrome.

“Chrome has become more polarizing, and more personal, than any other aspect of truck design,” said Rich Scheer, director, Exterior Design, Chevrolet Trucks. “Some customers want no chrome at all and only body-color or blacked-out trim. Others feel a truck isn’t a truck without a chrome bumper, but feel extra chrome can be too ‘flashy.’ Others want as much chrome as they can get.”

Accordingly, the eight trims are tailored to give customers a wide range of features and levels of chrome, enabling customers to choose the best truck for their personal preferences.

More functional and more connected interiors

The interior design was also strongly influenced by customer feedback. Because truck owners use their vehicles for both hauling cargo and transporting people, customers’ top priorities were more comfortable seating, more interior cargo storage and more functional, easy-to-use controls.

Accordingly, the cab has been stretched, with crew-cab models now offering 3 inches of additional rear-seat legroom for an impressive 44.5 inches of front legroom and 43.8 inches of rear legroom.

New available storage options include two 10-liter bins integrated in the second-row seatbacks for holding small items like gloves or tie-down straps, as well as a large 24-liter storage tray under the second-row seat that can secure everything from gallons of milk to fishing rods and tackle boxes.

Every surface has been designed for function and ergonomics, from the rotary knob textures to the infotainment screen angle. Even the luxurious High Country is subjected to stringent durability tests, including 100,000 seat-slide tests to make sure the supple seats meet the expectations of our toughest owners.

The Silverado was already the first pickup to offer 4G LTE Wi-Fi connectivity, Apple Car Play, Android Auto, wireless phone charging and OnStar safety and security features. For 2019, that leadership will be improved with new safety and convenience features to be announced later this year.

Making the Most Dependable, Longest Lasting full-size trucks even more so

“Truck customers told us they depend on their trucks for much more than just transportation,” said Herrick. “Many use their trucks to earn a paycheck, or to do what they enjoy most when they’re off the clock. Given how important trucks are to our customers, we set a lofty goal for exceeding the dependability and longevity of the current Silverado.”

To do so, the engineering team doubled many of the key validation metrics for the next-gen truck, making it the most-tested vehicle GM has ever produced. That includes accumulating a staggering seven million miles of real-world testing before the first Silverado is delivered to customers.

The 2019 Chevrolet Silverado will be on display at the North American International Auto Show through Jan. 28 in Detroit. Production of the 2019 Silverado will begin at the Fort Wayne, Indiana Assembly plant, ranked the highest-quality plant in North America by J.D. Power and Associates, with customer deliveries beginning this fall.

2019 Silverado 1500 Trim Levels

High Value:

  • Work Truck features “CHEVROLET” graphic across the grille and tailgate, blacked-out trim and 17-inch steel wheels for maximum durability. The interior features durable vinyl or cloth seats and 7-inch color touch screen.
  • Custom features a body-color styling theme, 20-inch painted aluminum wheels, LED signature taillamps and available integrated dual exhaust.
  • Custom Trailboss (new for 2019) adds off-road equipment to the Custom, including a 2-inch suspension lift and the Z71 Off Road Package with a locking rear differential, skid plates, Rancho shocks, 18-inch wheels and Goodyear Duratrac off-road tires.

High Volume:

  • LT features chrome accents on the bumpers, front grille and mirror caps, Chevrolet bowtie in the grille, LED reflector headlamps and signature daytime running lights. The interior features an 8-inch color touch screen and available leather seating surfaces
  • RST (new for 2019) brings a street-performance appearance to the LT, with body-color trim, full LED lighting (foglamps, headlamps and taillamps) and up to 22-inch wheels with all-season tires.
  • LT Trailboss (new for 2019) adds off-road equipment to the LT, including a 2-inch suspension lift and the Z71 Off Road Package, including locking rear differential, skid plates, Rancho shocks, 18-inch wheels and Goodyear Duratrac off-road tires.

High Feature:

  • LTZ features chrome accents on the bumpers, front grille, mirror caps, door handles and hockey-stick beltline as well as power folding and heated outside rearview mirrors. Leather interior trim is standard equipment.
  • High Country features an exclusive front grille design with two-tone chrome and bronze finish, body-color accents plus chrome assist steps from wheel to wheel. It also includes the power up/down tailgate as standard equipment. 

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SUBARU ASCENT SUV CONCEPT MAKES WORLD DEBUT AT THE 2017 NEW YORK INTERNATIONAL AUTO SHOW

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SUBARU ASCENT SUV CONCEPT MAKES WORLD DEBUT AT THE 2017 NEW YORK INTERNATIONAL AUTO SHOW

  • Subaru confirms future 3-row SUV will be named Subaru Ascent
  • The Ascent will be powered by an all-new turbocharged DI Boxer Engine
  • Ascent SUV Concept showcases 7 passenger interior 

NEW YORK -  Subaru of America, Inc., which this month posted its 64th consecutive month of record-breaking sales, today made the world debut of the Subaru Ascent SUV Concept. The styling concept also confirms the name Ascent for the upcoming Subaru 3-row SUV. Both the design concept and the production Ascent will feature an all-new turbocharged direct injection boxer engine.

The exterior design of the concept follows Subaru’s “Dynamic x Solid” theme with powerful fender flares representing Subaru’s all-wheel drive system and a large, bluff grille denoting a true SUV look. The interior of the concept features a flowing dashboard design and a 7-passenger configuration with center captain’s chairs.
The Ascent production model will be based on a modified version of the Subaru Global Platform that debuted last year. The model will be built at Subaru of Indiana, Inc. in Lafayette, Indiana and will be sold exclusively in the North American market starting in 2018.

Specifications:
Body size: (Length x Width x Height) 198.8 x 78.3 x 72.4 inches
Wheelbase: 117 inches
Tire Size: 275/50 R21
Seating Capacity: 7

Story and Photographs provided by Subaru USA Media 

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Toyota FT-4X Concept

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Toyota FT-4X Concept

NEW YORK (April 12, 2017) – It’s only natural. In the busyness of city-based work life there emerges a growing urge to “get away”. For millennial-aged professionals confined to city limits, oftentimes these getaways are unplanned, and are of the casual, less extreme kind. (No time for summiting a mountain – a drive to the scenic point will do!)

Enter the completely revolutionary Toyota FT-4X Concept – or, “Future Toyota”-Four-Wheel Drive Crossover – that today took the New York International Auto Show (NYIAS) by storm.

It’s a four-wheel drive toolbox penned by Toyota’s Calty Design Research Inc. in Newport Beach, California. With its long list of unique functionalities and a Rugged Charm compact design, the FT-4X is the seamless conduit of popular Casualcore – rather than hardcore – outings by anyone, anytime.
“As designers, we’re investing deep thought into the emotional connection with our cars,” said Calty President, Kevin Hunter. “The Toyota FT-4X is not simply a concept where style meets function; it is a thoughtful, charming and engaging experience that adds real pleasure and convenience to the journey. We focused on how a crossover vehicle can add fun and value to casual adventures both in and out of the city, thinking about how someone would use it, and what they would love to do with it.”
 
THE EMERGENCE OF CASUALCORE EXPLORATION

A shift from multiday, extreme, high-effort excursions to brief, unplanned, casual adventures is an overwhelming reality for Generation Y. Millennials are fond of the outdoors, but operate almost always indoors. They enjoy venturing into to new neighborhoods and national parks, but hardly plan ahead. Their countless interactions on social media bring inspiration. It is the busyness of their nonstop daily lives that pushes them past the precipice of “liking” a digital snapshot into the realm of creating their own, in reality. Their adventures begin curbside, in a parking structure, or in the depths of an underground garage. 

Dinner on the beach during a beautiful evening; tailgating with friends while listening to music; visiting a favorite trailhead for a run or dog walk; settling next to a campfire for an overnight desert stay – these are the types of quick escapes that an increasing number of young, career-minded urbanites hold dear.
Always ready to go? They are – and so is the Toyota FT-4X.
 
RUGGED CHARM PERSONA

Casualcore adventures originate in the city. Knowing this, Calty’s designers instituted a Rugged Charm ethos when creating the FT-4X. Rugged Charm places value on simplicity, capability, durability, and Toyota lineage. Furthermore, it takes into account compact, sturdy dimensions, and a charming ubiquitous tactility of grips, handles, and controls (the notion of feeling a satisfying mechanical reaction to a user’s input).

“You can really tell that we had a blast designing the FT-4X because it looks fun to use and fun to drive,” described Calty Studio Chief Designer, Ian Cartabiano. “I love this idea of mechanical satisfaction because while we’re living in today’s digital world, we took something that’s based on physical movements and made that a large part of what this vehicle is. We want everyone to interact with this car and feel a sense of delight and excitement.”
 
Designers approached their work uncharacteristically. Rather than begin their styling processes at the nose or profile, they began at the rear. Why? In their months’ long research, they noticed that basecamp for Gen Y explorers was oftentimes the destination itself. Cherished experiences were had in and around this basecamp, usually at their vehicle’s tailgate or hatch.

Small, yet strong outdoor activity gear inspired the FT-4X’s expressive looks. For its exterior, stylists imbued an X Theme throughout the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) C-Platform. Imagine this: At the center of a vertical X (which bows outward) is a door handle, or, in essence, the widest part of FT-4X (71.7 in.). This places the broadest area near the driver and passenger, creating a natural protective zone. At the rear, the bowed vertical X can be seen at the rear hatch, again placing the door handle at the center and creating a protective space.

Now, imagine another X, but this time horizontal, or flat, placed at the top and bottom of the vertical Xs. At each of the four corners of the bottom X is an 18-inch wheel wearing a custom 225/55R-18 Goodyear® All-Season tire. The FT-4X stands 63.9 inches tall, is 167.3 inches long, and has a wheelbase of 103.9 inches. Its form emanates simple sturdiness front to back, top to bottom. It’s X Theme abound.

The rear hatch is a modern engineering marvel. Called Multi-Hatch, it opens two ways: horizontally in Urban Mode, and vertically in Outdoor Mode. Urban Mode splits the hatch in half and makes for easier curbside gear loading when clearance is limited. Outdoor Mode opens the one-piece hatch upward, creating an impromptu shelter from the elements. The door’s design also incorporates a satisfying mechanical touch: a rotatable handle that users turn to select its opening mode. The deeply set handle is capable of being gripped by a gloved hand, say, when loading or unloading while snowboarding, or when out-and-about on a wintry day.
 
Twin red hooks sit below the Multi-Hatch within the rear bumper. These high-visibility reflective pieces are secure anchor points for vehicle recovery and the tying down of loads, if desired. Big item hauling is simplified with a reinforced flat roof, plus, a tie down hoop placed at each of the roof’s corners. Extra utility is provided by power supply outlets set at the base of the tie down hoops. Users can power a variety of campsite electronics and lighting or roof rack accessories thanks to the convenient outlets.

Generous approach and departure angles add to the FT-4X’s prowess on a variety of paved and unpaved paths. Wide black-painted over-fenders lend a tough look to the exterior and engulf the beefy Goodyear® rubber. A vertical Picture Window set above the driver’s side rear fender pays homage to the classic version brandished by Toyota’s iconic Pickup Xtracab truck and first-generation 4Runner sport-utility vehicle. The window glass is removable and interchangeable, allowing for owners to personalize their FT-4X even further with multiple opaque color or tinted glass options. The rear door handle is discretely placed fore of the vertical window and high above the beltline, much like it is on the current Toyota C-HR.   

Sculpted rocker panels at the lower portion of the doors enhance underbody protection and durability when venturing off the beaten path. And whenever the FT-4X does find some heroic scenery, a GoPro® HERO5 Session™ camera built into the driver’s side rearview mirror can capture it all.

Of course, the X Theme finds its way up front too. At the center of the nose’s vertical X is a classic, extra-large embossed TOYOTA logo that’s flanked by bright LED headlamps. Like the rear, reflective tie down hooks set in the lower bumper add to the crossover’s looks and deftness. Another nod to classic FJ Land Cruisers and Pickup models of yesteryears: the recognizable horizontal orientation of the FT-4X’s grille, headlights, and bumper.
 
THE MULTI-TOOL CABIN

Proceeding from work to play, indoors to outdoors, without advanced preparation can be a recipe for forgetting some essential equipment. No worries (as Gen Y-ers might say)! The FT-4X is a rolling gear box. Not only is the interior’s concept that of a large open space having plenty of easily accessible storage for basic equipment, but it is basic equipment itself. Passengers can easily identify the space’s purpose based on coloring, as blue classifies closed storage, while orange indicates open storage.
On the inside of the Multi-Hatch with rear Picture Window are twin boxes – one warm, the other cold. They’re designated for a number of functions, such as the temporary stowage of snacks, or the warming and cooling of gear (i.e. gloves, blankets, ice packs, etc.).

The cabin is sectioned into threes: Clean Zone, where the front passengers sit, and where rugged floor mats and door sills were inspired by Japanese sunoko slatted wood flooring; Wet Zone, also characterized by all-weather mats (where passengers can stow damp swimsuits/snow clothing or muddy boots) and located just behind the front seats, as well as below the rear second row bench seat; and, Rear Cargo Zone.
 
The Rear Cargo Zone’s floor lays completely flat and features topside tracks for securing cargo. A deep storage compartment is hidden underneath, and can be accessed by sliding the floor out toward the Multi-Hatch, transforming the floor into a tray. Folding the second row bench seat down extends the floor’s capacity considerably. Red tie down hooks line the sides of the rear’s cargo hold, too, for added load securing. Above, in the headliner, resides removable inside lighting that doubles as a flashlight.
Diving deeper into the cabin reveals more nifty elements. The rear door handles serve as impromptu water bottles. Its armrests have USB outlets and big, rotatable window switches. And, much like the rear’s ceiling-mounted removable flashlight, the dome light can serve as an exterior locator or beacon.

An ultra-compact The North Face® sleeping bag fits neatly between front passenger seats, and functions as an armrest that is strapped atop an extra-large dividing console. The console can fold upward, revealing additional storage capacity for medium-sized gear. Its breathable, high-grip, hybrid mesh surface allows for wet items to dry quickly, and its bungee cord lattices keep small items in place. Front passenger doors receive identical large window switches and removable water bottle door grips as the rear, but gain blue storage boxes camouflaged as armrests.
 
The dash ahead of the front passenger is a mix of blue and orange designated storage. A larger blue chest “floats” above a carved orange bin. On both sides of the chest are slim air vents capable of rotating down in order to warm, dry, or cool clothing such as gloves and hats. A removable multimedia audio system is part boom box, part in-dash stereo and is engineered with an extra-large handle grip (ala exterior door handles).

Although there is no traditional navigation screen, designers did include a mobile phone mount directly above the driver’s digitized cylindrical instrument cluster. The concept being that a downloadable navigation application, as well as an application showing digitized off-road instrumentation, can be made available for drivers’ use. Gen Y-ers, Calty’s designers realized, rely heavily on their mobile devices for GPS directions.

A “LET’S GO PLACES” DRIVETRAIN

Albeit a concept, one could assume the FT-4X could potentially employ a small displacement four-cylinder engine. Being equipped with mechanical four-wheel drive and selectable low-range further accentuates the FT-4X’s always-ready character, while the punchy, low-displacement engine maintains exceptional usability and efficiency while traversing congested city streets or open dusty trails. A sophisticated MacPherson strut front, double-wishbone rear suspension absorbs rocks and potholes.
 
LIVE IN THE CITY, THRIVE IN THE WILD

The Toyota FT-4X Concept fully embodies “Rugged Waku-Doki” (translation: a palpable heart-pounding sense of excitement) through its numerous clever design ingredients. It charms its tech-savvy, screen-scrolling users with a distinct tactile charisma sensed at every button push, handle twist, and dirt road trekked. Yes, with the FT-4X, never has the divide between desktop and trailhead been as infinitesimal as now.


TOYOTA FT-4X CONCEPT DIMENSIONS

WHEELBASE103.9 in.

LENGTH167.3 in.

WIDTH71.7 in.

HEIGHT63.9 in.

 

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2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk - 707 Horsepower

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2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk - 707 Horsepower

  • Most powerful SUV ever: supercharged 6.2-liter V-8 engine delivers 707 horsepower and 645 lb.-ft. of torque 
  • Quickest SUV ever: 0-60 miles per hour (mph) in 3.5 seconds, quarter mile in 11.6 seconds and top speed of 180 mph
  • Upgraded TorqueFlite eight-speed automatic transmission and driveline components engineered to handle additional torque output
  • 60-0 mph braking performance of 114 feet
    • New Brembo braking system includes largest-ever front brakes on a Jeep® vehicle
  • World-class on-road driving dynamics: upgraded TorqueFlite eight-speed automatic transmission and driveline components, five drive-mode Selec-Track system and Bilstein adaptive damping suspension
  • Aggressive, functional exterior appointments include unique quad-tip exhaust and redesigned fascia that optimizes airflow and cooling
  • New standard 20 x 10-inch Titanium wheels expose distinctive yellow Brembo brake calipers
  • Driver-focused interior: 7-inch instrument cluster with centered tachometer and 200-mph speedometer; 8.4-inch touchscreen with Trackhawk Performance Pages
  • More than 70 safety and security features
  • Loaded with advanced technology: new Uconnect 8.4-standard touchscreen includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto

April 12, 2017 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - Injected with an unmatched 707 horsepower courtesy of an awe-inspiring supercharged 6.2-liter V-8 engine, the most awarded SUV ever and the most capable full-size SUV on the planet has been transformed into the most powerful and quickest SUV ever.
 
Introducing the new 2018 Jeep® Grand Cherokee Trackhawk.

The new benchmark 707-horsepower supercharged engine combines with an upgraded high-torque capacity TorqueFlite eight-speed automatic transmission, world-class on-road driving dynamics and new Brembo brakes to deliver a new level of performance: 0-60 miles per hour (mph) in 3.5 seconds, quarter mile in 11.6 seconds at 116 mph, top speed of 180 mph, 60-0 mph braking distance in 114 feet and .88g capability on the skid pad.

“Long recognized as the full-size SUV capability leader, Jeep Grand Cherokee is now the most powerful and quickest SUV as well, with the introduction of our new 707-horsepower Trackhawk,” said Mike Manley, Head of Jeep Brand – FCA Global. “The new Grand Cherokee Trackhawk delivers astounding performance numbers, backed by renowned SRT engineering that combines world-class on-road driving dynamics with luxury, refinement and an array of innovative advanced technology.”  

Built in Detroit at the Jefferson North Assembly Plant, the 2018 Grand Cherokee Trackhawk will arrive in Jeep showrooms in the fourth quarter of 2017.
 
Awe-inspiring 707 horsepower courtesy of supercharged 6.2-liter V-8
Powering the 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk is a supercharged 6.2-liter V-8 engine delivering 707 horsepower and 645 lb.-ft. of torque.

The breakthrough supercharged engine is designed and manufactured using only the strongest and most durable materials. Its cast iron block features water jackets between the cylinders for optimal cooling. A forged-steel crankshaft with induction-hardened bearing surfaces is so strong it can withstand firing pressures of nearly 1,600 psi (110 bar) – the equivalent of five family sedans standing on each piston, every two revolutions. The unique, specially tuned crankshaft damper has been burst tested to 13,000 rpm.

High-strength, forged-alloy pistons – developed using advanced telemetry measurement – are coupled to powder-forged connecting rods with high-load-capacity bushings and diamond-like, carbon-coated piston pins.

Premium grade, heat-treated aluminum-alloy cylinder heads are optimized for superior thermal conductivity. Sodium-cooled exhaust valves feature hollow-stem construction and special steel-alloy heads that stand up to temperatures as high as 1,652 degrees Fahrenheit (900 degrees Celsius).

The 2,380cc per revolution supercharger includes integral charge-air coolers and an integrated electronic bypass valve to regulate boost pressure to a maximum of 11.6 psi (80 kPa). The twin-screw rotors are specially coated with:

  •   a proprietary formula of polyimide and other resins
  •   nanometer-sized, wear-resistant particles
  •   solid lubricants, such as PTFE (Teflon)


The coating enables tighter clearance between the rotors. This reduces internal air leakage, delivering improved compressor performance and higher efficiencies. The coating can withstand the temperatures generated by compression, and provides superior corrosion resistance.
 
The supercharger is sealed for life with premium synthetic oil, uses a drive ratio of 2.36:1 and has a maximum speed of 14,600 rpm. The supercharger drive system’s one-way clutch de-coupler improves refinement, while allowing for precisely the kind of powerful sound certain to captivate Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk drivers.
 
Air sources for the supercharger include a cold-air scoop in the lower front fascia, which replaces the driver’s-side fog lamp and helps to feed the 92mm throttle body.
 
The large-nosed crankshaft drives a high-flow gerotor oil pump, which feeds a lubrication circuit that includes eight high-flow piston-cooling jets. A high-capacity oil/air heat exchanger, mounted in the front of the Trackhawk, mitigates oil temperatures when driving conditions are harshest, such as on the track.
 
A new low-temperature cooling system, consisting of a pump, reservoir, heat exchanger and lines, help keep the charge air cool during performance driving. This system is designed to keep intake air temperatures below 140 degrees Fahrenheit (60 degrees Celsius), under extreme ambient conditions, while enabling air flow of up to 30,000 liters per minute.

A new fuel delivery system, featuring two high-flow, multi-mode pumps, matches the high-performance demands of the engine.
 
Upgraded driveline components, durability and refinement result in benchmark off-road performance
The performance of the 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk is bolstered by various upgraded driveline components engineered to handle the additional torque output from the supercharged engine.

The standard TorqueFlite eight-speed automatic transmission delivers improved shift response, quality and consistent performance and drivability. The transmission software takes into account variables such as engine torque gradients, kick-down events, longitudinal and lateral acceleration, grade changes, friction detection and downshift detection to determine the appropriate shift map. 

Grand Cherokee Trackhawk is equipped with the Jeep Quadra-Trac on-demand four-wheel-drive system, which includes an electronic limited-slip rear differential and a single-speed active transfer case. The new, full-time active transfer case uses forged steel chain sprockets and a wider chain for added strength and durability.

A strengthened rear drive shaft connects to a new, stronger rear axle. The differential features a revised housing design, revised ring-and-pinion tooth geometry and new four-point axle mounting scheme for better load distribution, additional torque capacity and overall durability. Torque is delivered to the rear wheels via new ultra-high-strength 300M low-alloy vacuum melted steel half-shafts with upgraded eight-ball outboard constant velocity joints.

Standard Launch Control optimizes the Grand Cherokee Trackhawk’s performance by coordinating the engine, transmission, driveline and suspension for a textbook launch and consistent straight-line acceleration.

A new standard Torque Reserve system provides improved engine torque response and quicker vehicle acceleration in Launch Control by pre-positioning the supercharger bypass valve to generate boost and minimize manifold filling time, while cutting fueling to individual cylinders and managing spark timing. This generates a reserve of torque that can be instantaneously delivered upon acceleration from a standing stop.

The Selec-Track system on the Grand Cherokee Trackhawk uses performance-tuned software to pre-configure and distinguish the five dynamic modes, including:  Auto, Sport, Track, Snow and Tow, enabling drivers to choose a vehicle setting that ideally meets their requirements and ambient conditions. The drive modes separately control the four-wheel-drive system, transmission, paddle shifters, suspension and the electric power steering.

Dynamic drive mode configurations include:

  • Auto — Automatically adapts to any condition; uses a 40-percent front/60-percent rear torque split
  • Sport — Transmission shift times are reduced by 50 percent versus Auto Mode; stability control, four-wheel-drive and steering systems are set for typical enthusiast driving style; paddle shifters are enabled and suspension is tightened up without increasing impact harshness to deliver increased vehicle performance capability over Auto Mode; uses 35/65 torque split
  • Track — Transmission shift times are reduced 68 percent versus Auto Mode to 160 milliseconds; stability control, four-wheel-drive and steering systems are set for ultimate track performance; paddle shifters are enabled and suspension is set to full firm to deliver maximum vehicle performance capability on smooth, dry surfaces; uses 30/70 torque split
  • Tow — Alters torque delivery off the line for greater smoothness and adjusts suspension to combat pitch and yaw to deliver maximum towing performance: uses 60/40 torque split
  • Snow — Maximizes traction to deliver optimized performance on snow and ice with reduced engine horsepower; uses 50/50 torque split


Trackhawk also features a Custom Mode that allows the driver to personalize the vehicle’s performance with a selectable driving experience offering a multitude of vehicle system combinations. 

The Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk rides on a short- and long-arm (SLA) independent front suspension with coil springs, Bilstein adaptive damping suspension (ADS), upper- and aluminum lower-control arms (“A” arms), aluminum knuckle, aluminum clevis and hollow stabilizer bar. The rear suspension is a multi-link design with coil spring, Bilstein ADS, aluminum lower control arm, independent upper links (tension and camber), plus a separate toe link, and a hollow stabilizer bar.
 
Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk is capable of towing 7,200 pounds.
 
New benchmark SUV stopping performance
New high-performance Brembo brakes include the largest standard front brakes ever offered on a Jeep vehicle. Up front are 15.75-inch (400 mm) two-piece vented rotors with six-piston calipers painted with a new distinctive yellow finish, and 13.78-inch (350 mm) vented rotors with four-piston yellow calipers in the rear for outstanding stopping performance, heat management and durability. 

The new Brembo brakes bring the Grand Cherokee Trackhawk to a stop from 60 mph in 114 feet. For added safety, the anti-lock braking, electronic stability control and traction systems are uniquely tuned.

Aggressive and functional exterior
The 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk rides one inch lower than non-SRT Grand Cherokee models and is further set apart with body-colored wheel flares, side sill cladding and a sculpted hood with dual heat extractors.

The signature seven-slot upper front grille is flanked by adaptive, bi-xenon headlamps and surrounded by an LED character lamp treatment. The headlamps on the Trackhawk model feature a unique Gloss Black background to accent their jewel-like appearance.

The fog lights are absent from the Trackhawk’s front fascia to optimize airflow to cooling modules and air induction without compromising the vehicle’s balance.

From behind, the Grand Cherokee Trackhawk features a unique Gloss Black rear valence that showcases four-inch Black Chrome quad exhaust tips. The new quad exhaust system design provides an exhilarating and unmistakable note during maximum acceleration. 

A “Supercharged” badge on both front doors and a Trackhawk badge on the liftgate features a Liquid Titanium Chrome outline and Matte Black background.

New standard 20 x 10-inch Titanium wheels with a Satin Chrome center cap showcase the distinctive yellow calipers underneath. Available lightweight 20 x 10-inch forged aluminum Low Gloss Black wheels save 12 pounds versus the standard Trackhawk wheel. Grand Cherokee Trackhawk also features all-new Pirelli 295/45ZR20 Scorpion Verde All-Season and new Pirelli P Zero three-season tires with an increased speed rating.

Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk is available in nine exterior colors: Billet Silver, Granite Crystal, Diamond Black, Ivory Tri-coat, Bright White, Velvet Red, Rhino (exclusive), Redline 2 (exclusive) and True Blue.
 
High-performance, racing-inspired interior
The driver-focused interior features premium soft-touch materials, unique Light Black Chrome finishes and carbon fiber spears, and a 7-inch driver information display (DID) instrument cluster, which features the tachometer in the middle. The 200-mph speedometer is on the left side of the cluster.

The instrument panel center stack with new 8.4-inch Uconnect touchscreen features Trackhawk-exclusive Performance Pages that showcase an array of performance timers and gauge readouts, including a new engine dynamometer screen that measures instantaneous horsepower, torque and current transmission gear. The dynamometer screen also includes a new snapshot function for owners to save their readouts on a USB.  

Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk’s three-spoke steering wheel with a flat bottom features a bevy of comfort, convenience and connectivity controls and ergonomically efficient paddle shifters.

The Trackhawk features standard Nappa leather and suede seats with an embroidered “Trackhawk” logo. A fully wrapped Signature Leather Interior Package with “Trackhawk” embossed on the seats, optional in black and Trackhawk-exclusive black and Dark Ruby Red is available. Seats are also heated (front and rear) and ventilated (front). Dark Ruby Red seatbelts and a dual-pane panoramic sunroof are also available options.

A new Premium Metal Package is standard and enhances the Trackhawk’s interior with various upscale real metal accents.   

Additional premium interior features include: standard Active Noise Cancellation; premium headliner; leather stitched instrument panel, doors, center console and armrest; Berber floormats with Trackhawk badge and available dual-screen rear-seat entertainment center with Blu-ray.

There is a choice of two audio systems, including an 825-watt Harman Kardon high-performance audio system with 19-speakers and two subwoofers.
 
Safety and Security
The 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk includes more than 70 safety and security features, including Trailer Hitch Camera View at Speed, which allows owners to view trailered items through the rear-mounted camera while moving, and a Valet mode that enables the following vehicle configurations:

  • Engine is remapped to significantly reduce horsepower and torque; limited to 4,000 rpm
  • Transmission locks out access to first gear and upshifts earlier than normal
  • Transmission will treat the manual shifter position the same as the drive position
  • Traction, steering and suspension are set to their Street settings
  • Steering-wheel paddle shifters are disabled
  • Drive Mode functions are disabled
  • Electronic stability control (ESC) is enabled to Full-on
  • Launch Control is disabled


Drivers can activate and deactivate Valet mode with a personalized four-digit PIN code.
 
Other prominent, standard Grand Cherokee Trackhawk safety and security features include Adaptive Cruise Control with Stop; Advanced Brake Assist; Blind-spot Monitoring with Rear Cross Path Detection; Full-speed Forward Collision Warning with Crash Mitigation; Front and Rear Park Assist; Lane Departure Warning-Plus; Ready Alert Braking and SiriusXM Guardian and Roadside Assistance buttons.
 
Advanced technology delivered with all-new infotainment system
New for 2018, the Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk is equipped with standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto through the latest version of Uconnect’s 8.4-inch touchscreen radio system. 
 
Apple CarPlay
Seamlessly integrates an iPhone with the vehicle’s built-in display and controls in addition to featuring Siri Voice control. iPhone-equipped drivers can make phone calls, access music, send and receive messages, and receive voice-guided navigation optimized for traffic conditions and more, while staying focused on the road.

Android Auto
System shares useful information when driving and makes it easy to access the best of Google technology. Featuring Google Maps with free voice-guided navigation, live traffic information, and lane guidance; on-demand access to 30 million songs with Google Play Music; plus the ability to place phone calls or send and receive messages while keeping hands on the wheel; and ask Google search any question. Android Auto also makes it easy to access popular apps and content from the Uconnect system’s touchscreen.

The latest Uconnect operating system includes easy-to-use features, pinch-to-zoom display, enhanced processing power, faster startup times and touchscreens that display high-resolution graphics. Drivers and passengers also have an abundance of infotainment features at their fingertips with SiriusXM Radio, Travel Link, Traffic and Guardian Connected Services that provide real-time information.
 
Jeep Brand
Built on more than 75 years of legendary heritage, Jeep is the authentic SUV with class-leading capability, craftsmanship and versatility for people who seek extraordinary journeys. The Jeep brand delivers an open invitation to live life to the fullest by offering a full line of vehicles that continue to provide owners with a sense of security to handle any journey with confidence.
 
The Jeep vehicle lineup consists of the Cherokee, Compass, Grand Cherokee, Renegade and Wrangler. To meet consumer demand around the world, all Jeep models sold outside North America are available in both left and right-hand drive configurations and with gasoline and diesel powertrain options.
 

 

Story & Photographs provided by FCA

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The new Mercedes-AMG GLC63 SUV, GLC63 Coupe and GLC63 S Coupe

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The new Mercedes-AMG GLC63 SUV, GLC63 Coupe and GLC63 S Coupe

Mercedes-AMG set a milestone when it launched the first ML55 in 1999. The combination of a high-performance engine with the space and practicality of an SUV opened up an entirely new market segment in which AMG has continued to thrive. With the new GLC63 SUV, GLC63 Coupe and GLC63 S Coupe, Mercedes-AMG once again occupies an exceptional position in the marketplace. For the first time in the Mercedes-AMG lineup, a mid-size SUV will now be available with a powerful eight-cylinder biturbo engine. The handcrafted AMG 4.0L V8 biturbo engine produces 469 hp in the GLC63 SUV and GLC63 Coupe and a mighty 503 hp in the GLC63 S Coupe. Acceleration from 0-60 mph takes just 3.9 seconds in the GLC63 SUV and Coupe, and an impressive 3.7 seconds in the GLC63 S Coupe. Each of these three new performance models feature an air spring suspension with adaptive, adjustable damping, AMG Performance 4MATIC+ all-wheel drive with fully variable torque distribution, a rear-axle limited-slip differential and a high-performance braking system. As a visual indication of their links with Mercedes-AMG sports cars, all new GLC63 models sport the AMG Panamericana grille, which was previously reserved for the AMG GT family of sports cars. In addition, the new models offer all the advantages of a Mercedes SUV: ample room for passengers and luggage, comprehensive array of safety equipment and superior traction in all road conditions.

The new Mercedes-AMG GLC63 SUV, GLC63 Coupe and GLC63 S Coupe occupy exceptional positions in their respective markets on every front. They are the only vehicles in their segment to be powered by an eight-cylinder biturbo engine, thus meeting the wishes of customers who are looking for a midsize SUV with superior power delivery and a highly emotional, unmistakable engine sound.

"For us, the new GLC63 is a quite special vehicle. It is no easy job designing an SUV to be highly sporty and dynamic while at the same time offering inherent extreme driving stability and efficiency. This required us to put our heart and soul, along with our many years of SUV expertise, into the development of this vehicle. The result is an SUV that can be driven with high precision and agility and which, if required, is equally at home on a high-speed lap of the race track. With our V8 biturbo engine, we hold a decisive unique selling point in the performance market. What is more, with both SUV and Coupe variants available, we offer the widest choice in the segment. The technical closeness to our sports cars is visually underlined by the Panamericana grille, which was previously reserved for our AMG GT models," says Tobias Moers, CEO of Mercedes-AMG GmbH.

Unique offering in the segment with V8 biturbo engine 

Both SUV and Coupe variants of the GLC63 are offered with the proven, handcrafted AMG 4.0L V8 biturbo engine, producing 469 hp and 479 lb-ft of torque. The GLC63 S Coupe produces a massive 503 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque. Acceleration from 0-60 mph takes just 3.9 seconds in the GLC63 SUV and Coupe, and an impressive 3.7 seconds in the GLC63 S Coupe.

V8 biturbo closely related to engine in the Mercedes-AMG GT 

The handcrafted AMG 4.0L V8 biturbo engine is already used in numerous AMG Performance vehicles, including in the AMG GT sports car family (with dry sump lubrication). A characteristic feature of this engine is that the engine’s two turbochargers are positioned inside the cylinder "V". The main advantages of this design are the compact engine construction, optimal throttle response and low exhaust emissions. Each engine is assembled by one mechanic in the engine shop at AMG’s headquarters in Affalterbach, Germany according to the "one man - one engine" principle.

Short shift times, high efficiency: AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 9-speed transmission 

The new GLC63 SUV, GLC63 Coupe and GLC63 S Coupe all feature the AMG SPEEDSHIFT MCT 9-speed transmission, which made its debut in the Mercedes-AMG E63 S. The driver benefits from extremely short shift/response times. Fast multiple downshifts and the double-declutching function make for highly emotional shifting. A start-off wet clutch replaces a traditional torque converter in this new transmission, saving weight and optimizing the response to the driver's accelerator pedal input.

AMG Performance 4MATIC+ variable all-wheel drive 

After the Mercedes-AMG E63 S Sedan, the GLC63 now comes with AMG Performance 4MATIC+ all-wheel drive. This intelligent system unites the advantages of different drive concepts: fully variable torque distribution to the front and rear axles ensures optimal traction right up to the physical limit. The driver is also able to rely on high driving stability and handling safety under all conditions, even in snow. The transition from rear-wheel to all-wheel drive and vice versa is seamless, as intelligent control is integrated into the overall vehicle system architecture.

An electromechanically controlled clutch connects the permanently driven rear axle to the fully variable front axle. The best possible torque distribution is continuously computed according to driving conditions and driver's input. Transitions are seamless and based on a sophisticated matrix. Alongside traction and lateral dynamics, the all-wheel drive also improves the longitudinal dynamics for even more powerful acceleration.

For a personalized experience: AMG DYNAMIC SELECT drive programs 

The four AMG DYNAMIC SELECT drive programs "Comfort," "Sport," "Sport+" and "Individual" allow the driver to extensively influence the characteristics of the GLC63 SUV, GLC63 Coupe and GLC63 S Coupe by modifying key parameters such as the response of engine, transmission, suspension, steering, ESP® and all-wheel drive. Independent of the DYNAMIC SELECT drive programs, the driver has the option of pressing the "M" button to switch directly to manual mode, in which gearshifts are executed exclusively using the shift paddles on the steering wheel. The suspension settings can also be specially selected if required.

"Comfort" is a balanced drive program with a comfort-oriented suspension and steering set-up as well as a fuel-efficient powertrain configuration with early upshifts – including smooth gearshifts and a restrained engine sound. The ECO start/stop function and coasting function are activated in this mode. When the driver releases the accelerator in a speed range between 37 and 99 mph, the clutch of the MCT transmission opens and the engine is decoupled from the powertrain. Electronics lower the engine speed to idle and driving resistance is reduced by the compression and friction forces of the engine on overrun.

The DYNAMIC SELECT "Sport" and "Sport+" drive programs are designed for high driving dynamics. This results from an agile accelerator pedal characteristic with direct set-up and emotively appealing gearshifts with shorter shift times and double-clutching function on downshifts. The increased idle speed in "Sport+" enables especially fast acceleration from rest.

The GLC63 Coupe and GLC63 S Coupe have an additional "RACE" drive program, in which all driving parameters are configured for maximum performance. With a total of five drive programs, this Performance SUV once again offers the widest choice in the segment.

Exhaust system with flap technology for variable engine sound 

An emotional V8 engine sound comes courtesy of an exhaust system with flap technology. This flap is controlled automatically depending on the AMG DYNAMIC SELECT drive program, the power demanded by the driver and the engine speed. Optionally available is the AMG Performance exhaust system, which allows the exhaust sound to be modulated at the press of a button.

Specific suspension for maximum lateral and longitudinal dynamics 

The agility, highly dynamic lateral acceleration and maximum grip of the new GLC63 SUV, GLC63 Coupe and GLC63 S Coupe models comes courtesy of a new AMG suspension system which features fully-supporting multi-chamber air springs. This suspension setup ensures exceptionally high levels of camber stability, driving dynamics and steering precision.

The front axle features a four-link design with special steering knuckles, optimized elastokinematics and radial brake connections. Independent wheel control and wheel suspension elements enable higher lateral acceleration with minimal torque steer.

The concept for the rear axle was carried over from the AMG E63 S Sedan and specially matched to the requirements of the GLC. The model-specific multi-link concept impresses with highly precise wheel control and increased stiffness. The AMG-specific rear axle carrier makes the wider track possible in comparison with the GLC from Mercedes-Benz, while the contact surfaces of the wheel bearings have also been moved further outwards. Other measures include AMG-specific wheel carriers, stiffer elastokinematic tuning and higher negative camber.

Individual driving experience thanks to three-chamber air suspension system 

Thanks to a sporty spring and damper set-up and continuously variable damping, the new three-chamber air suspension system combines exemplary driving dynamics with excellent road roar and tire vibration characteristics. The stiffness of the air springs can be adjusted over a wide range by activating or deactivating individual air chambers, making for perceptibly enhanced comfort and handling.

There are three degrees of spring tuning depending on the selected drive program and current driving status. The spring rate is hardened automatically in the event of sudden load changes, fast cornering, heavy acceleration or heavy braking, effectively reducing roll and pitch while stabilizing the GLC63 SUV, GLC63 Coupe and GLC63 S Coupe.

The adaptive damping can be set in three stages – "Comfort," "Sport" and "Sport+" – thus, both relaxed comfort on long journeys and maximum sportiness are possible. Rebound and compression levels are adjusted independently of each other, and the freely programmable maps permit a wide spread between minimum and maximum damper force. The difference between the comfortable and sporty suspension settings is even more refined and is clearly perceptible – depending on driving style.

The GLC63 SUV and Coupe both come equipped with standard 10-spoke Titanium Grey light-alloy wheels with a high-sheen finish (front: 8 x 19 / rear: 9 x 19) with 235/55 R 19 tires at the front, and 255/50 R 19 tires at the rear. The GLC63 S Coupe comes with 5-twin-spoke light-alloy wheels painted in Titanium Grey with a high-sheen finish (front: 9.5 x 20 / rear: 10 x 20) with 265/45 R 20 tires at the front and 295/40 R 20 tires at the rear. Several other wheel and tire combinations are available, including forged, staggered fitment wheels with especially wide tires.

Rear-axle limited-slip differential: optimal traction under all conditions 

For improved traction and driving dynamics, both the GLC63 SUV and Coupe come with a mechanical rear-axle limited-slip differential, while the GLC63 S Coupe uses an electronic rear-axle limited-slip differential. Both differentials reduce the slip on the inside wheel when cornering, without control intervention by the brakes. As a result, the driver is able to accelerate out of corners even earlier thanks to the improved traction. The vehicle remains more stable when braking from high speed, while the limited-slip differential also improves traction when accelerating from a standstill. Overall, the rear axle has been specially matched to the higher driving dynamics of the new Performance SUVs.

The greatest benefit of the electronic rear-axle limited-slip differential is even more sensitive and precise control, which pushes the critical threshold higher, making it even easier to drive at the vehicle's limits. The three-stage ESP® with "ESP ON," 
"ESP SPORT Handling Mode" and "ESP OFF" settings work in perfect unison with the rear-axle limited-slip differential and is optimally tuned to provide outstanding dynamics.

Precise, agile handling: speed-sensitive sports steering 

The electromechanical, speed-sensitive sports steering provides precise, agile handling with authentic feedback. The driver benefits from the variable steering ratio and optimized response.

The steering also features variable power assistance with the two modes "Comfort" and "Sport." The power steering is dependent not only on the vehicle's speed, but also on the instantaneous lateral acceleration, selected AMG DYNAMIC SELECT drive program and setting of the adjustable damping.

Expressive front end with Panamericana grille 

A striking characteristic of the exterior design is the expressive front end: the new GLC63 SUV, GLC63 Coupe and GLC63 S Coupe are the first Mercedes-AMG Performance vehicles to feature the Panamericana grille, which was previously reserved for the AMG GT family of sports cars. This design statement affirms the consistently dynamic design of the new Performance SUV and Coupe. A wide front bumper inspired by the design of a jet wing and a large front splitter embodies the power of both new models. The Panamericana grille gives a clear view of the GLC63’s cooling technology – a typical attribute from the world of motor sport and a further differentiation from the other GLC models. Wider wheel arch claddings at front and rear lend emphasis to the muscular looks.

The new side sill panels make the SUV and Coupe appear to sit lower on the road while elongating the overall lines. On the GLC63 S Coupe, Matte Iridium Silver inserts make for a distinctive appearance. The muscular rear end is dominated by a wide rear bumper and a diffuser in grained black. The trim on the diffuser board is also finished in Matte Iridium Silver.

The GLC63 SUV is provided with a spoiler lip on the roof, while the spoiler lip on the GLC63 Coupe and GLC63 S Coupe is familiar from its prior appearance on the AMG GLC43 Coupe. The exhaust system is finished with two high-gloss chrome-plated twin tailpipe trims.

Interior also with a consistent focus on driving dynamics 

The interior underscores the leadership ambition of the new GLC63 SUV, GLC63 Coupe and GLC63 S Coupe in terms of driving dynamics. Driver and front passenger seats are finished in MB-Tex man-made leather combined with DINAMICA microfiber, which unite excellent lateral support with functional ergonomics.

The instrument panel is trimmed in Black MB-Tex man-made leather, with the GLC63 S Coupe additionally receiving contrasting topstitching. The high-grade look is underlined by aluminum trim. The touchpad is flanked by the AMG DYNAMIC SELECT switch and numerous AMG-specific controls, such as the button for the 3-stage AMG RIDE CONTROL suspension, 3-stage ESP® or optionally the button for the AMG Performance exhaust system with flap control.

The GLC63 S Coupe variant comes with an even more extensive equipment package, including an AMG Performance steering wheel in Black Nappa Leather / DINAMICA microfiber, in combination with leather appointments and an AMG instrument cluster with red highlights.

Exclusive optional extras 

The AMG Performance Studio offers technical and design highlights to make the Mercedes-AMG GLC63 SUV, GLC63 Coupe and GLC63 S Coupe even sportier, more exclusive and more individual. The following provides just a selection:

    • AMG Performance exhaust system with flap control at the push of a button
      • Greater differentiation of the sound characteristics by two additional exhaust flaps
      • Sound characteristics dependent on selected drive program - clear differentiation between a full sound in the “C” and “S” drive programs and a distinctly sporty sound in the “S+” and “RACE” drive programs (GLC63 Coupe and GLC63 S Coupe only)
      • Additional control of the sound characteristics via button on the center control panel in the center console
    • AMG Night package:
      • Front splitter of the AMG front bumper in High-Gloss Black
      • Inserts in the AMG side sill panels in High-Gloss Black
      • Exterior mirror housings in High-Gloss Black
      • Waistline trim strip and window frame in High-Gloss Black
      • Roof rails (SUV only) finished in Matte Black
    • AMG Exterior Carbon Fiber package:
      • Exterior mirror housings in carbon fiber
      • Spoiler lip in carbon fiber
    • 20-inch light-alloy wheels
    • 21-inch light-alloy wheels
    • 21-inch forged wheels
    • AMG Performance Studio interior:
      • Upper section of instrument panel and waistlines in Black Nappa-look MB-Tex man-made leather with contrasting topstitching
        (GLC63 S Coupe)
      • Two-tone Nappa leather in Red Pepper/Black or Platinum White/Black
      • Black Nappa Leather
      • AMG Performance seats for driver and front passenger with more heavily contoured seat shape for enhanced lateral support, with integral head restraints and "AMG" badge in the seat backrests

The new 2018 Mercedes-AMG GLC63 SUV and Mercedes-AMG GLC63 Coupe will celebrate their auto show debuts at the New York International Auto Show.

 

- Per Mercedes Media & Photographs 

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All-New Lexus LS 500h Makes Its World Premiere at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show

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All-New Lexus LS 500h Makes Its World Premiere at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show

  • Full hybrid powertrain with a 3.5-liter V6 Dual VVT-i gasoline engine and Lexus Multi Stage Hybrid System
  • Compact, lightweight, lithium-ion hybrid battery is 20 percent smaller with a higher power density than the current LS 600h L
  • Spacious cabin design influenced by Japanese hospitality
  • Available interior trims include hand-pleated door trims inspired by origami and glass ornamentation using Japanese Kiriko techniques

 The 2018 Lexus LS 500h, the full hybrid version of Lexus’ new flagship sedan, was unveiled today in Geneva.
 
The model, which follows the world premiere of the twin-turbo gas V6-powered LS 500 at the 2017 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit, is a further manifestation of how Lexus has reimagined the luxury sedan, presenting bold design, enhanced performance and a sophisticated appeal to capture the imagination of forward-thinking customers.
 
The car’s design successfully brings together the virtues of a long-wheelbase four-door sedan with a low, coupe-like profile, positioning the LS perfectly across the growing sedan and coupe segments.
 
The cabin has benefited from an equally new approach, focusing on “progressive comfort,” interpreting Japanese aesthetics and craftsmanship traditions in the context of an advanced, luxurious and innovative vehicle interior such as the unique door trim ornamentation. Notably, the LS 500 was honored at the NAIAS with the EyesOn Design Award for Design Excellence – Interior Design.
 
Conceived as the new global pinnacle of the Lexus brand, the LS goes beyond what the world expects from a luxury car. Chief Engineer Toshio Asahi explained: “Developing such a flagship model required a massive paradigm shift. Rather than being bound by the conventions that had defined luxury cars in the past, we aimed to create a car with innovative, emotional and sensual appeal that would draw customers’ eyes away from other luxury cars and provide entirely new values.”
 
The LS 500h is equipped with the new Lexus Multi Stage Hybrid System, which provides enhanced responsiveness and linear acceleration, particularly when accelerating from a full stop. The powertrain features a 3.5-liter V6 Dual VVT-i V6 gasoline engine and two electric motors, together delivering maximum system power of 354 hp.
 
The LS 500h is built on the new Lexus Global Architecture – Luxury (GA-L) platform, which is shared with the all-new LC.  This platform ensures a low center of gravity and optimum weight distribution, contributing to the car’s essential stability and handling agility, which in turn deliver increased driver rewards. The fundamental high rigidity of the chassis allows the new multi-link suspension to be tuned to achieve enhanced handling performance and the supreme comfort for which the LS is renowned. The car’s dynamic performance also benefits from the coordination of braking, steering and stability systems through Lexus Dynamic Handling.
 
Advanced technologies are further used to deliver impressive safety performance. The LS 500h’s available Advanced Safety Package features the world’s first Intuitive Pedestrian Detection system with Active Steering within the lane.
 
Omotenashi, expressing the unique sense of Japanese hospitality, defines the LS 500h’s whisper-quiet and luxurious interior. Supreme comfort is provided by front and rear seats with multiple power adjustment, heating, cooling, and massage functions. There is also an optional rear seat arrangement that includes an extending leg ottoman and the most generous leg room of any LS generation. At 123 inches, the wheelbase of the new LS is in fact 1.3-inches longer than on the current long wheelbase LS 600h L.
 
Lexus Takumi craftsmanship also contributes to the special quality of the LS 500h’s cabin, in luxurious new trims, materials and detailing, including a new pleating treatment and Kirikoglasswork on the inner door panels.
 
IMAGINATIVE TECHNOLOGY
 
Full hybrid powertrain with 3.5-liter V6 Dual VVT-i gas engine
The LS 500h’s Lexus Multi Stage Hybrid System combines a 3.5-liter V6 Dual VVT-i gas engine with two electric motors, together delivering a total output of 354hp. The engine makes optimal use of Dual VVT-i (intelligent variable valve-timing), with timing precisely gauged in line with driving conditions, helping to secure high torque at all engine speeds. Measures to reduce friction losses and thus improve engine efficiency include the adoption of narrow, lightweight roller rocker arms and low-friction timing chains, while D-4S direct fuel injection helps create optimum combustion conditions, contributing to enhanced fuel economy.
 
Lexus Multi Stage Hybrid System
The new LS 500h is equipped with Lexus’ Multi Stage Hybrid System, a breakthrough technology that enriches the hybrid powertrain performance experience and is also seen on the all-new LC. The system adds a four-stage shifting device to the Lexus Hybrid Drive combination of a 3.5-liter V6 gas engine and two electric motors. The result is more direct response to driver inputs while maintaining the characteristic smoothness and efficiency for which Lexus hybrids are renowned.
 
In a conventional full hybrid vehicle, engine output is boosted by the electric motor via a reduction gear, but with the new Multi Stage Hybrid System the power from the V6 engine and the hybrid battery can be amplified by the four-stage shifting device, allowing much greater drive power to be generated when accelerating from stationary and achieving a 0-60 time of 5.4 seconds.

The design of the system places the multi-stage shift unit immediately behind the power split device, on an axis aligned with the engine crankshaft. Although the unit has four speeds, the D range has a simulated shift control pattern that delivers the feel of driving with a 10-speed gearbox. As vehicle speed rises, engine speed increases with a linear, direct and continuous acceleration feel, free from the “rubber band” effect witnessed in some continuously variable transmissions. In the 10th gear range, the CVT control allows for high-speed cruising at lower engine revs for quiet, smooth and fuel-efficient performance.
 
The transmission further benefits from an improved version of the artificial intelligence shift control found in conventional automatics. This enables intelligent, optimum gear selection to be made in line with driving conditions and driver inputs, for example when going up or downhill. By reading the vehicle’s acceleration, deceleration and lateral G trajectories, the system can adjust gear shifts to suit the driver’s style and behavior, without the driver having to select a different drive mode to get the kind of performance they want from the transmission.  
 
Thanks to the Multi Stage Hybrid System’s design, the driver is able to take advantage of an M mode to select and hold gears manually, using paddle shifts mounted behind the steering wheel – a function not previously available on a Lexus hybrid. Thanks to the coordinated control of the Power Split Device and the gear shifting mechanism, the gear shift will start instantaneously with the computer receiving the signal from the paddle shift, giving an exceptionally quick response.
 
Lithium-ion hybrid battery
The LS 500h is fitted with a compact, lightweight, lithium-ion hybrid battery. It is 20 percent smaller than the nickel-metal hydride unit featured in the current Lexus LS 600h, yet has a higher power density.  Using lithium-ion technology has also reduced the component’s weight, helping reduce the car’s overall mass, thus supporting overall fuel economy, emissions performance and handling balance.
 
It is the first Lexus hybrid battery to feature a satellite construction design, in which the cell voltage monitoring function has been made separate from the battery ECU. This allows for efficient use of what would otherwise be empty space inside the battery pack to house the wiring harness and battery cooling blower, thus reducing the unit’s overall dimensions. The cooling blower itself has been made more powerful and thinner in size.
 
LUXURY INTERIOR INSPIRED BY OMOTENASHI
Omotenashi, the Japanese concept of hospitality, is a common thread that has run through all LS models. In the context of a luxury automobile, it means taking care of the driver and passengers, anticipating their needs, attending to their comfort and protecting them from hazards.
 
Takumi Craftsmanship
The quality, precision and pride in perfection that define Lexus’ Takumi craftsmanship are richly evident in the luxury detailing in the new LS, as befits a flagship sedan. Lexus has produced a unique aesthetic for the new LS which can be witnessed in elements such as the interior lighting and an exceptional attention to detail in the finish and appearance of everything you see and feel.
 
Inspired by Japanese culture and traditions
Natural woodwork and the application of sophisticated sliced wood and laser cutting technologies have been used to produce new interior finish options, including Art Wood/Organic, Art Wood/Herringbone and Laser Cut Special. The grain pattern of Art Wood is achieved by combining different color woods and is an original Lexus design, created using Takumi craftsmanship skills. The LS’ new cross grain finish is larger with sharper contrasts between light and dark, creating a more vibrant effect. The new Laser Cut Special trim emphasizes the contrast between precise metal lines and natural wood.
 
Hand-pleated door trims were inspired by origami, the Japanese art of creating three-dimensional forms from a single piece of paper. The door panels were originally rendered in paper by a skilled fabric artisan. The finished three-dimensional pattern captures the Lexus “L” motif in its intricate and precise folds, conveying a different effect when seen in daylight or the cabin’s night-time illumination.
 
For the ornamentation panel, the aim was to express Lexus’ Time in Design philosophy. To achieve this, the team called on the skills of Kiriko artisan glassworkers who produced hand-carved designs that capture the contrast created by light and shadow. Through painstaking trial and error, a design was chosen that looks beautiful and sensual from any angle. Although fragile in appearance, the glass has been treated using reinforcement technology to ensure it is robust for use in a vehicle interior. The hand-carved design was reproduced using advanced glass production technology, which precisely scans and digitizes tens of thousands of facets. In the next step the glass ornamentation undergoes a series of treatments such as polishing and strengthening conducted by specialized Japanese Takumi craftsmen.
 
 

2018 Lexus LS Basic Specifications

 LS 500LS 500h

Vehicle typeFull-size premium luxury sedanFull-size premium luxury hybrid sedan

Engine3.5-liter V6, direct fuel injection, twin turbochargers3.5-liter V6 hybrid engine

Valve mechanism24-valve, DOHC, chain drive (with Dual VVT-i)

Cylinders6

LayoutFront engine, RWD and AWDFront engine, RWD and AWD

Transmission10-speed automaticMulti Stage Hybrid Transmission

Max engine output (hp)415295

Max engine torque (lb-ft)442258

Total System Output (hp) 354

Battery Type Lithium-ion

Battery Voltage 310

Acceleration (0-60)4.5 sec (RWD), 4.8 sec (AWD)5.4 sec

Wheelbase123 in. (3,125 mm)

Overall length206.1 in. (5,235 mm)

Height57.1 in. (1,450 mm)

Width74.8 in. (1,900 mm)

Wheels19 or 20-inch

 

Lexus' passion for brave design, imaginative technology, and exhilarating performance enables the luxury lifestyle brand to create amazing experiences for its customers. Lexus began its journey in 1989 with two luxury sedans and a commitment to pursue perfection. Since then, Lexus has developed its lineup to meet the needs of global luxury customers in more than 90 countries. In the United States, Lexus vehicles are sold through 237 dealers offering a full line-up of luxury vehicles. With five models incorporating Lexus Hybrid Drive, Lexus is the luxury hybrid leader. Lexus also offers seven F SPORT models and two F performance models. Lexus is committed to being a visionary brand that anticipates the future for luxury customers.

 

Story provided my Lexus USA Media
 

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2017 North American International Auto Show recap

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2017 North American International Auto Show recap

World Premier 2018 Lexus LS 500

World Premier 2018 Lexus LS 500

Written By Arash Dashtaray - Photographs by Ryan Graham

 

One of the biggest and most recognized auto show in the world has come and gone.  We had opportunity to attend the 2017 North American International Auto Show which was held from Jan9th through the 10th.  Most of the reveals were made on the 9th but few manufactures couldn’t wait any longer and revealed them on the 8th.  

 

I will be posting within the next few days more information about the vehicles revealed.  For now I will just mention a few and how we thought this year event went.  It was smaller than previous years I must say.  Several manufactures opted not to attend including Porsche, Land Rover, Jaguar, & Tesla.  Exotic manufactures in likes of Lamborghini, Ferrari, Bentley & McLaren usually don’t attend these types of events.  That wasn’t the only reason why it seem slow, few manufactures decided to reveal there new products in a more private environment then in a big hall. Consumer Electronic Show (CES) was held a week prior to NAIAS and few manufactures decided to reveal few vehicles then including Toyota, Ford, Mercedes, BMW and Audi to name a few.  

 

Even though it was a slower reveal then previous years, it was still exciting to hear what allmanufactures where sharing.  I’ll be quick to the point that the top 3 reveals that I most enjoyed was 1) 2018 Lexus LS, 2) Kia Stinger GT & 3) Toyota Camry.  Also few other manufactures revealed newly redesigned Honda Odyssey, Chevrolet Traverse and the new Volkswagen Tiguan.  

 

The top honors for North American top vehicle awards went to;

Car of the year - Chevrolet Bolt

2017 Chevrolet Bolt -GM Stock Photo

2017 Chevrolet Bolt -GM Stock Photo

Truck of the year - Honda Ridgeline

2017 Honda Ridgeline

2017 Honda Ridgeline

Minivan of the year - Chrysler Pacifica

2017 Chrysler Pacifica Limited - FCA Stock photo

2017 Chrysler Pacifica Limited - FCA Stock photo

Votes were made by 60 automotive journalist from around the country.  

 

Ford announced some big news mentioning that they will start making the fan favorite Ford Ranger plan to be available in 2019 and Ford Bronco by 2020.  These great news got the crowd excited and looking forward to seeing then in the near future.  For the rest of the manufactures all had great displays of their new 2017/18 line up.  Stay tuned for more in depth news on recently revealed vehicles.  Till then, here are a few photographs from the show.  

Click on image to be re-directed to photo album.  Photos taken by Ryan Graham 

Click on image to be re-directed to photo album.  Photos taken by Ryan Graham 

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2017 North American International Auto Show just around the corner

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2017 North American International Auto Show just around the corner

Click on image to be re-directed to NAIAS main page. 

Click on image to be re-directed to NAIAS main page. 

As our team prepare for our trip to Detroit, we are extremely excited to bring you the latest news.  Make sure to follow us through out our social media sites for live coverages.  We will also try to answer any questions on the spot during our live feeds.  Below is the schedule.  Thank you all and the live coverages start Sunday Jan 8th.  If you have a request, please email and or message us on our social media sites.  

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2018 Chevrolet Traverse to debit Jan 9 at NAIAS

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2018 Chevrolet Traverse to debit Jan 9 at NAIAS

DETROIT — Chevrolet will complete the transformation of its crossover and SUV lineup with the introduction of the next-generation Traverse on Jan. 9 at the North American International Auto Show.

The all-new Traverse features a bold and refined design with seating for up to eight passengers. It’s expected to offer the segment’s best third-row legroom and maximum cargo space.

Premium interior and exterior design cues and new technologies abound, including available exclusive D-Optic headlamps that provide a natural daylight effect with a seamless light quality. 

The 2018 Traverse will be Chevrolet’s latest crossover/SUV offering, joining the 2017 Bolt EV and Trax, the 2018 Equinox revealed in September and the full-size Tahoe and Suburban.

“Nobody in the industry offers a broader, fresher lineup of SUVs and crossovers than Chevrolet,” said Alan Batey, president of GM North America and brand chief of Global Chevrolet. “From the all-electric Bolt EV to America’s longest-running nameplate, Suburban, we’ve got something for every customer and lifestyle.”

Press release provided by Chevrolet Media Press Room  

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CHEVROLET HONORS WREATHS ACROSS AMERICA AT 117TH ARMY-NAVY GAME

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CHEVROLET HONORS WREATHS ACROSS AMERICA AT 117TH ARMY-NAVY GAME

BALTIMORE — For the seventh year in a row Chevrolet has served as the official vehicle of the Army-Navy Game presented by USAA.

Dan Akerson, former chairman and CEO of General Motors and a U.S. Naval Academy graduate, recognized the work being done by Wreaths Across America to honor fallen soldiers with an on-field presentation during the game.

Akerson presented a Chevrolet Silverado Heavy Duty pickup and 40-foot trailer to the founder of Wreaths Across America, Morrill Worcester, and a Silverado Special Ops edition pickup to one of the group’s most dedicated volunteers, Gold Star Parent Scott Harris, for his loyalty and commitment to the organization. Harris, who lost his son, Army Spec. Dustin Harris, in 2006 in Iraq, delivers wreaths across the country in a semi wrapped in a portrait of his son.

“It is so important that we never forget the sacrifice that our military families make to ensure the safety and security of our country,” said Akerson. “Helping Wreaths Across America honor our fallen soldiers demonstrates in a small but powerful way the gratitude that the entire Chevrolet and GM family has for their service and their sacrifice.”

Chevrolet will support Wreaths Across America for the third year in a row as it honors America’s military heroes by helping the organization place more than 1 million wreaths at military cemeteries across the country.

A fleet of Chevrolet vehicles provided to Wreaths Across America — including several decorated Tahoes and Suburbans — will lead the Wreaths Across America journey from its Maine headquarters to Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, D.C., beginning Dec. 11.

Along the route, Chevrolet and its dealers will donate more than 17,000 wreaths and help the organization accomplish its mission to remember, honor and teach during several stops at schools and community centers.

ABOUT WREATHS ACROSS AMERICA
Wreaths Across America began when Maine businessman Morrill Worcester – inspired by the power of Arlington National Cemetery during a childhood visit – began placing wreaths there in 1992 with a small group of volunteers. Today, his vision has become a national grassroots movement to remember America’s military heroes during the holidays. In 2008, Congress unanimously passed legislation to recognize Wreaths Across America Day each December, and memorials are held to honor veterans at historic military landmarks and statehouses in nearly all 50 states. For more information, including local opportunities to volunteer, visit WreathsAcrossAmerica.org.

Information provided by Chevrolet

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Alfa Romeo Announces Pricing for All-new 2017 Giulia Lineup

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Alfa Romeo Announces Pricing for All-new 2017 Giulia Lineup

2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio

2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio

Premium Mid-size Sedan Named “Car of the Year” by Top Gear Magazine Starts at $37,995 MSRP & Record-Breaking 505-hp Quadrifoglio at $72,000 MSRP 

  • All-new Giulia lineup combines Italian craftsmanship, class-leading performance, state-of-the-art technology and a passion for driving for the premium mid-size market
  • Giulia nameplate reflects a 55-year heritage of Alfa Romeo's lightweight, performance sedan tradition and over 105 years of brand history, carving its legend on road courses around the globe
  • Stunning Italian design and crafted by Alfa Romeo artisans at the Cassino plant in Frosinone, Italy
  • All Giulia models feature a near perfect 50:50 weight distribution, class-leading power and performance and an eight-speed automatic transmission with available column-mounted paddle shifters with gear shifts in less than 100 milliseconds
  • Giulia is very well-equipped with standard premium features, including a 280-hp turbocharged and intercooled 2.0L engine delivering 0-60 mph in 5.1 seconds, DNA Mode, leather interior, bi-xenon headlamps, dual exhaust, carbon fiber driveshaft, flat-bottom steering wheel, 7-inch TFT and much more
  • Giulia Ti (Turismo Internazionale) adds 18-inch aluminum wheels, genuine wood interior accents, heated front seats, heated steering wheel, 8.8-inch widescreen infotainment with SiriusXM and much more
  • Giulia Ti Sport adds Quadrifoglio-inspired unique front and rear fascias, 19-inch dark 5-hole aluminum wheels, 12-way power high-performance leather seats, aluminum column-mounted paddle shifters, sport steering wheel, genuine aluminum interior accents, gloss-black window trim surround and colored brake calipers
  • State-of-the-art Q4 all-wheel-drive system available on Giulia and Giulia Ti
  • Giulia Quadrifoglio features distinct styling and the most powerful engine ever developed in a production Alfa Romeo with an all-new 505-hp 2.9L bi-turbo intercooled V-6, carbon fiber hood, roof and rear spoiler, adaptive performance suspension, DNA Pro with Race Mode, torque vectoring, carbon fiber active aero front splitter, carbon fiber interior accents, 3D Navigation and much more
  • Giulia and Giulia Ti go on sale in January 2017 with an MSRP of $37,995 and $39,995, respectively
  • Giulia Quadrifoglio goes on sale this month with an MSRP of $72,000
2017 Alfa Rome Giulia TI

2017 Alfa Rome Giulia TI

“The all-new Giulia is the result of our 105 years of passion for Italian style, craftsmanship and performance,” said Reid Bigland, Head of Alfa Romeo. “Crafted in Italy, the Giulia lineup sets an entirely new benchmark for the segment as the world’s fastest four-door production sedan, featuring class-leading engines, an all-new exclusive architecture, stunning design and state-of-the art technology, available starting from $37,995 MSRP.”

Built around the driver, Alfa Romeo Giulia designers focused on simplistic elegance, with an emphasis on incorporating the essential elements for performance. Inside, Giulia’s high level of craftsmanship starts with an asymmetric-styled instrument panel, featuring a driver-focused cockpit crafted with an array of available leathers with accent stitching, plus trim bezels in aluminum, wood or carbon fiber – all for a bespoke look that could only be crafted in Italy. A Formula-1-inspired steering wheel features a thick-rim profile that transmits the chassis’ direct-steering feel and neatly groups the vehicle controls and the engine start button. Behind the steering wheel, the Giulia features a full-color 7-inch thin-film transistor (TFT) instrument cluster straddled by two large white-on-black face analog gauges.

Giulia Quadrifoglio stands as the most powerful Alfa Romeo production car ever with its 2.9L bi-turbo V-6 engine producing a class-leading 505 horsepower and 443 lb.-ft. of torque. The Giulia and Giulia Ti models feature an all-new, all-aluminum, 2.0-liter, direct-injection turbo engine with an eight-speed automatic transmission delivering a class-leading, standard 280 hp and 306 lb.-ft. of torque.

With its muscular proportions and a pure design ethos of passion, lightness and simplistic elegance clothing its class-leading technical layout with near perfect 50/50 weight balance, the all-new 2017 Giulia exudes stunning and functional Italian style with a finesse of Alfa Romeo heritage, athletically taut lines and sculptural details.

Information provided by FCA Automotive

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Lexus LS to make Global Debut at 2017 NAIAS

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Lexus LS to make Global Debut at 2017 NAIAS

Picture provided by Lexus USA

Picture provided by Lexus USA

TORRANCE, Calif. (December 8, 2016) -- Lexus announced today that the all-new, fifth-generation LS flagship sedan will make its world debut at the 2017 North American International Auto Show next month.

The introduction of the LS 400 in 1989 in Detroit made automotive history as a world-class car for the United States. Not only did the vehicle make its mark by offering the drive performance, quietness, and luxury that consumers expected from a premium vehicle, but its unveiling also heralded the birth of the Lexus brand.

Now, 28 years later, the all-new LS sedan will be a world-class car for more than 90 countries around the globe, boasting a bold new look with a coupe-like silhouette. Built on the company’s all-new global architecture for luxury vehicles (GA–L), the premium rear-wheel drive platform—an extended version of that used in the LC 500—will offer a more dynamic experience on the road.  Inside the spacious cabin, luxurious appointments and visionary technology will provide drivers with the luxury experience they expect from a global flagship sedan.

Lexus launched in 1989 with two luxury sedans and a commitment to pursue perfection. Since that time, Lexus has expanded its line-up to meet the needs of global luxury customers. Lexus is now going beyond its reputation for high quality vehicles with the integration of innovative technology, emotional exterior and interior designs, and engaging driving dynamics and performance.  With five models incorporating Lexus Hybrid Drive, Lexus is the luxury hybrid leader. Lexus also offers seven F SPORT models and two F performance models.  In the United States, Lexus vehicles are sold through 236 dealers who are committed to exemplary customer service.

Press release was made by Toyota USA

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