Archive for August, 2010

Peugeot Launch Prices and Equipment for Award-Winning RCZ Sports Coupe

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

The award-winning Peugeot RCZ is now on sale in Ireland. Voted Most Beautiful Car of the Year at the 25th International Automobile Festival by over 100,000 internet voters and awarded a red dot: best of the best 2010 award for outstanding design quality in the Automotive category earlier this year, the RCZ was then presented with the Fleet World Design of the Year gong in May. The much-sought-after sports coupe will retail in Ireland from €36,495, plus dealer delivery related charges.

There will be one trim level available, the RCZ Sport model with a choice of two high-performance engines: a 2.0 HDi 163bhp engine with 6-speed manual gearbox, (139g/CO2, Band B road tax of €156) and a 1.6 petrol 200bhp engine with 6-speed manual, (159g/CO2, Band D road tax of €447).

The RCZ immerses the driver into a world of sport and luxury. Standard comfort equipment on both petrol and diesel models will include Bluetooth and USB box, luxury leather upholstery, electric and sports front seats, auto headlamps and wipers, electrochrome rear view mirror, electric folding mirrors, front and rear parking aid, dual zone climate control aircon, electric front windows, alarm, cruise control with speed limiter, 18” alloy wheels, active rear spoiler, leather gearstick, stitched nubuck dash, remote stalk control radio, CD and MP3 player, carpet mats, aluminium door sills and double bubble roof.

To enhance the driver experience, a sports pack will come as standard to Ireland to include a leather steering wheel, a sports steering wheel and short gear shift. The sports steering wheel is 362cm in diameter to offer optimal control.

Standard safety equipment includes ABS, ESP, traction control, electronic brake force distribution, brake assist, hill assist and four airbags.

Announcing the prices and equipment, George Harbourne, Peugeot’s new Managing Director said, “The Peugeot RCZ is a very special car that has attracted hundreds of enquiries through our website and Dealer Network. The sports coupe arrives at a pertinent time when the rejuvenation of the Peugeot brand in Ireland is well under way and it will do much to raise our profile in a new segment for us. Whilst small numbers are currently available, production will free up for the Irish market in January and we expect to sell in the region of 200 units next year. The bulk of sales will be the low emission 2.0 HDi diesel that qualifies for €156 annual road tax.”

Machineshift.com

John Deere officially opens ETIC in Germany

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

John Deere has officially opened its new European Technology and Innovation Centre (ETIC) in Kaiserslautern, Germany. The new facility will serve as a primary resource for intelligent solutions and advanced technologies aimed at customers throughout Europe, CIS, Northern Africa, Near and Middle East, and other markets using state-of-the-art John Deere technology.

“Since John Deere invests approximately four per cent of its equipment sales revenue into research and development – around US $4.5 million every working day – it is only natural for us to allocate a good portion of our R&D expenditure to one of Europe’s most demanding markets,” said agricultural & turf division president Mark von Pentz at the ETIC opening.

The ETIC currently accommodates around 90 engineers, computer experts, technicians and administrative personnel. Their main focus will be on the development of intelligent solutions, the integration of electronics into tractors and harvesting equipment, and on related technologies that help to automate machine operation, reduce operator fatigue and increase machine productivity in the field. Staff numbers will gradually increase over the next few years to around 200 employees.

“From John Deere’s perspective, Kaiserslautern is an ideal place to establish such a facility, as we can fully exploit a number of highly qualified resources,” said ETIC deputy director Professor Dr Pickel. “Apart from the technical university of Kaiserslautern, we maintain close partnerships with two nearby Fraunhofer Society institutes, the Institute for Experimental Software Engineering (IESE) and the Institute of Techno- and Business Mathematics (ITWM). John Deere has also recently become a shareholder in the German Research Centre for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI), which will be of great value to our future developments.”

The 10,000m² ETIC site includes an office building, laboratories and workshops, and features a modern, architecturally appealing design. The facility has also been designed to meet the stringent standards of the German Society for Sustainable Building (DGNB), and is equipped with an innovative sun protection system, sun-sensor controlled interior lighting, a geothermal heating and cooling system and a photovoltaic energy system. Compared to traditional oil-based heating and electrical supply systems, the geothermal and photovoltaic systems will help to reduce annual CO2 emission levels by over 142 tonnes.

ETIC building

Machineshift.com

The Kia Picanto has been judged Britain’s most reliable new car according to Which? magazine.

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

Which? Car has just published its annual reliability survey – the result of reports from Which? members – and Kia’s oldest car, introduced in 2004, topped the list for reliability amongst cars up to three years old and was one of the Top Five in the four to eight years old category as well.

Achieving a reliability score of 98.1 per cent, the Kia Picanto beat off established rivals from Japanese and European brands to take this real-life reliability accolade.

Peter Vicary-Smith, Chief Executive, Which?, said; “You don’t expect a new car to go wrong – but our rigorous research shows there’s a big difference between the best and worst. Some small cars, particularly Korean and Japanese superminis, run like clockwork. Whereas some bigger cars, which you might expect to be more robust, aren’t all they’re cracked up to be.”

Kia Motors Ireland have sold nearly 300 Picanto models this year 40% of these sales coming from the Scrappage Scheme .” This survey comes as no surprise to us “commented Managing Director ,James Brooks . “ We always knew that the Picanto was a reliable and dependable car and with the introduction of our Seven Year Warranty we have seen an increase of 57% in Picanto sales as customer priorities turn to both quality and affordability “

The Kia Picanto is available from €9,955 (€8,455 on the Government Scrappage Scheme)

Picanto Beauty Shot

Machineshift.com

SALTEX DEBUT FOR JCB’S SMALLEST EVER JCB COMPACT LOADALL

Monday, August 30th, 2010

THE SMALLEST ever Loadall telescopic handler model ever produced by JCB gets its Saltex debut this year – highlighting a design innovation which has reduced the machine height to less than two metres.

The new small but mighty 515-40 model is 1.8m high, 2.97m long and weighs less than 3.5 tonnes. Delivering powerful performance despite these compact dimensions, the machine will bring the benefits of JCB’s market-leading Loadall range to previously inaccessible construction and industrial applications.

For the horticulture industry, the versatile new model is able to perform many of the on-site tasks which may have previously required several different machines and will prove ideal for commercial growers, garden centres and nurseries.

At the heart of the JCB 515-40 is an innovative, patented chassis design. To achieve the lowest possible working height, JCB has challenged conventional design concepts to develop this unique, off-set, single-spine chassis with the machine’s cab then occupying the resulting space.

As a result, the machine boasts a spacious operator environment, with easy access, yet the overall height of the machine is reduced to less than two metres – a barrier which has previously prevented compact telescopic handlers performing in many otherwise suitable applications.

Designed for efficient manoeuvrability in restricted spaces and difficult ground conditions, the JCB 515-40 features 4-wheel drive, 4-wheel steering and a hydrostatic transmission. Powered by a 50hp Deutz engine, the JCB model can handle a 1500kg payload at a 4-metre lift height. For added versatility it can be specified with a compact Loadall or skid steer Quickhitch, opening up a vast range of compatible attachments. This extra functionality, combined with ease of operation makes the machine highly attractive to plant hirers.

Also on show at Saltex will be JCB’s 6×4 and 4×4 versions of its successful Groundhog utility vehicles.  The JCB Groundhog 4×4 is tough, versatile and reliable – opening up a vast range of potential applications in the agricultural, estate management, golf course management, construction and landscaping sectors.

Building on the success of the popular JCB Groundhog 6×4, it boasts many of the same key features such as high payload, versatility and the availability of road legal kits. It is powered by a 19.5kW (26hp) diesel engine, delivering impressive torque and a top speed of 50kph (31mph). The result is unrivalled performance and handling whether in arduous ground conditions, on hilly terrain or road travelling between sites. 4×4 CVT transmission with high/low gear range and engine braking give easy driving and control, while all-wheel hydraulic disc brakes with split circuit and a twin calliper parking brake provide excellent stopping power and safety.

The JCB Groundhog 4×4 features fully independent suspension at each wheel, with high ground clearance and progressive rate springs at the rear – giving impressive road holding and a smooth ride in rough terrain – whether laden or unladen.

Ideal for transporting people across rough and delicate ground – the JCB 6×4 Groundhog utility vehicle has already proved extremely popular in a wide range of markets including: country estates, agriculture, specialist hire companies, sports venues, utility companies, golf courses and grounds maintenance contractors.

The permanent 4-wheel drive utility vehicle is powered by a 768cc, liquid-cooled, 20 hp (14.9kW) diesel engine. It features CVT transmission including manual differential lock with a Kevlar drive belt for enhanced durability. The machine delivers class-leading performance with a max travel speed of 18 mph (29 km/h), max payload of 500kg and a towing capacity of 500kg.

Machineshift.com

Balfour Beatty invests in new fleet of John Deere tractors

Monday, August 30th, 2010

Balfour Beatty Utility Solutions, one of the UK’s leading utility solutions providers, has invested more than £1.3m in 33 brand new John Deere 5M and 6030 Series tractors, all equipped with front loaders. The machines have been purchased to support ongoing overhead line projects and increase operational capacity.

The company uses tractors extensively whilst installing and renovating overhead electricity lines. The new tractors will be equipped for one of two key roles; as either winch or tow machines.

The winch tractors will each be fitted with a 2000kg winch to enable them to raise and lower insulators and other equipment to teams working on towers. Tow tractors are used to move equipment around sites as well as towing tensioners – machinery used to raise and tighten the main power cables – to and from site.

In a change from the traditional green and yellow of John Deere tractors, Balfour Beatty Utility Solutions’ machines have all been finished in the companies’ distinguishing blue, giving them a unique and smart presence at sites around the country.

Rob Sonnex, Mechanical Plant Manager for Balfour Beatty Utility Solutions, said:

“We always buy the best when it comes to our plant and vehicles, and this investment is no exception. John Deere has an excellent reputation for quality and safety, whilst the technical support and dealership back up offered by the company and its dealer, Agricultural Industrial Services, made our choice clear. The new tractors will increase our capacity for overhead line work and therefore give significant benefits to our clients, especially on projects where time is a factor.

“When it came to purchasing our new tractors, we needed machines which would stand up to the stresses and strains our important work puts on them. We take safety extremely seriously in all of our work, so this was also an important factor when choosing a manufacturer.”

John Deere’s agricultural marketing manager Chris Meacock said:

“John Deere and AIS are delighted to have won this important contract to supply our tractors to one of the country’s major utility businesses. It underlines our continuing efforts to provide market leading technology solutions to a wide range of customers.”

The investment in the tractors comes only a few months after Balfour Beatty Utility Solutions invested in a fleet of 700 Mercedes Sprinter vans to improve safety for its entire workforce.

Tractors

Machineshift.com

Extreme Testing – New Ford Focus Takes on the Alps

Monday, August 30th, 2010

Cork, 16 July 2010 – Ahead of its early 2011 arrival in Ireland, the next generation Ford Focus is currently undergoing a series of tests that has taken it to some of the most extreme locations on the planet.  This week the car is being driven overloaded up and down the high Alpine passes of Austria, just one of a series of tests to ensure impeccable reliability and dependability wherever it is sold…

Altitude affects cars in the same way it affects humans. The higher you climb, the less oxygen there is in the air and it becomes harder to breathe and function.  Ford demands its products meet high standards of performance at all altitudes which is why the company frequently heads to the Austrian Alps and to the Grossglockner High Alpine Road to test its cars.

Ford vehicle integration engineer Bernd Herweling is spending two weeks here this month, driving 200km up and down the mountain every day. “We’re here testing next generation Focus with a variety of powertrains, both petrol and diesel,” he explains. “We’re evaluating driveability on steep mountain roads from a customer perspective.

“The drive up the mountain is a pretty much constant 12 per cent gradient all the way up to the 2,400 metre mark.  Up there the air is a lot thinner so the engine has to work harder.  It’s a long route which allows us to generate a lot of data.”

Today the team are testing a highly camouflaged Focus equipped with the all-new 1.6-litre Ford EcoBoost direct-injection turbo petrol engine.  On the back seat there’s a dozen or so plastic fuel cans filled with ballast which weigh the same as three heavy adults.

Other Focus models are undergoing towing tests on the gruelling road, towing a hefty four-wheeled trailer.  “Trailer testing is very important,” adds Bernd. “At sea level in this car you can pull up to 1,500kg with this powertrain.  But up here in this rarefied atmosphere the engine is going to struggle.  We are pushing the limits to see just how much weight it will pull up the hill and how the clutch copes with hill starts at altitude.”

“The conditions are extreme but that’s why we are here. If the car meets our performance targets in this environment, it’ll cope with pretty much anything our customers will ask of it!”

31 New Focus testing

Machineshift.com

THE ALL-NEW VOLVO V60 SPORTS WAGON BLENDS STYLE AND PERFORMANCE WITH GROUND-BREAKING SAFETY

Monday, August 23rd, 2010

THE ALL-NEW VOLVO V60 SPORTS WAGON BLENDS STYLE AND PERFORMANCE WITH GROUND-BREAKING SAFETY

  • The all-new Volvo V60 sports wagon launches with coupé-like design combined with dynamic driving characteristics
  • The load area has a capacity of 430 litres with the rear seats in place
  • The award-winning City Safety technology is standard with the new Pedestrian Detection with Full Auto Brake available as an option
  • Approximately 90 per cent of the annual V60 production of 50,000 cars will find European buyers

“The typical sports wagon customer is an S60 buyer who would like some extra space and flexibility, but without the slightest compromise on sporty design and exciting driving properties,” says Volvo Cars President and CEO Stephen Odell.

During its first year of production, the all-new Volvo V60 will be available with a variety of diesel and petrol engines spanning an economical 115 horsepower DRIVe version to an eager high-performance turbocharged D5 model producing 205 horsepower.

Further specifications and prices will be announced at a later date.

DESIGN: COUPÉ RATHER THAN ESTATE CAR STYLE

The pronounced wedge shape and the slim coupe-like roof line of the new Volvo V60 are accompanied by the high shoulder profile along the car’s sides, creating a gentle yet powerful double wave from the headlamps at the front to the tail lamps at the rear.

“From the design viewpoint, the focus was on making the car as close to a coupé as possible, while retaining that handy extra space at the rear. Our sports wagon does not aim to compete with the traditional estate car. For the customer who wants a lot of load space, there is our V70 or XC70,” says Örjan Sterner, head of exterior design for the new Volvo V60. He adds: “The dip in the middle of the double wave visually pushes the car down. This enhances the stance and makes the car look sleeker and lower. The sculpted bonnet and the short overhangs front and rear also emphasise the sports car feel.”

Dynamism is further enhanced by what Volvo’s design team calls the “racetrack” design. The car’s lines do not end abruptly but instead continue to flow organically, continually, echoing the smooth shapes of the racetrack.

Volvo’s designers have integrated LED (Light Emitting Diode) technology to create distinctive light patterns both front and rear. The vertical position lights at the front, the side-marker lights, the turn indicators integrated into the door mirrors and the tail lamps at the rear all give the new V60 an unmistakable profile even in the dark.

Exciting styling pack

A styling pack gives the V60 buyer the opportunity to boost the sporty attitude. The styling pack includes front and rear skid plates, a front decor trim, side scuff plates, special exhaust tailpipes and 18-inch wheels.

CHASSIS AND DRIVING DYNAMICS

Volvo Cars’ chassis experts worked on the driving experience in the new Volvo V60 with the same passion given to the development of the all-new S60. The result is a sports wagon with driving properties that do the sporting appearance full justice.

During the development process, the chassis team worked on the new Volvo V60 in parallel with the all-new Volvo S60. The result is a solution that features changes and refinements to virtually every single detail that effects the car’s load carrying capabilities.

Volvo’s new sports wagon is available with a choice of two chassis. In the European market, the newly developed dynamic chassis is standard, while other markets will have the touring chassis as standard with the dynamic variant available as an option. The difference between the two chassis alternatives is to be found in the dampers and the front and rear subframes. Here the touring variant has softer settings to give a smooth ride on poorer road surfaces.

In addition to the two standard chassis, all variants of the V60 can be specified with the optional FOUR-C (Continuously Controlled Chassis Concept) active chassis, which has been modified and refined for better control and comfort compared with previous Volvos.

The first sports wagon with Advanced Stability Control

The dynamic chassis is backed up by a range of electronic systems that sharpen the sporty driving experience further. Like the all-new S60, the new V60 is fitted with Advanced Stability Control. With a new roll angle sensor, it is possible to identify any skidding tendency at a very early stage. This means that the stability control system can step in earlier and with greater precision.

New Corner Traction Control for smoother cornering

Corner Traction Control is a new feature that uses torque vectoring so the car corners more smoothly. This technology is a further refinement of the Dynamic Stability and Traction Control (DSTC) system. When cornering, the car’s inner driven wheel is braked, causing more power to be transmitted to the outer driven wheel. This allows the driver to corner more tightly while reducing any tendency to understeer.

ENGINES

During its first year of production, the new Volvo V60 will be available with a variety of diesel and petrol engines. The focused drive to cut CO2 emissions has lowered fuel consumption throughout the engine range.

New 1.6-litre GTDi petrol engines

There will be a new 1.6-litre GTDi engine with 180 horsepower called the T4.  It will offer maximum torque of 240 Nm from just 1500 rpm all the way up to 5000 rpm. During short-term overboost, it provides an impressive 270 Nm of torque. This gives excellent flexibility throughout the speed range.

The T4 is available in combination with Volvo’s automatic six-speed Powershift transmission or a six-speed manual gearbox.

Two five-cylinder turbodiesels

The engine range also includes two five-cylinder turbodiesels. The D5 high-performance engine with twin turbos produces 205 horsepower and 420 Nm of torque. Acceleration from 0-100 km/h takes 7.9 seconds (manual and automatic). Top speed is 230 km/h (limited) with the manual and automatic gearbox.

In the most recent D5 version, which was introduced in spring 2009, performance and driveability requirements have been met by fitting two turbochargers of different sizes, one taking over from the other and providing added power across a broader rev range. The complementary properties of the two turbos are utilised optimally for a combination of high performance and low fuel consumption of 5.4l/100km (52.5 mpg) (EU Combined).

In addition there is the newly developed two-litre D3 producing 163 bhp and 400 Nm of torque. Acceleration from 0-100 km/h takes 9.4 seconds (manual and automatic). Top speed is 220 km/h (manual) and 215 km/h (automatic). The new five-cylinder 2.0D is, in principle, the same engine as the present 2.4D, but cylinder capacity has been reduced with a shorter stroke to optimise fuel consumption. Both turbodiesels are available with a six-speed Geartronic transmission or six-speed manual gearbox.

DRIVe diesel

During the course of the first year of production, a DRIVe version of the new V60 will also be introduced, featuring a 1.6-litre diesel engine. The engine produces 115 bhp and 270 Nm of torque, and will only be available with a six-speed manual gearbox.

Later during the first year of production, the new V60 will also become available in a T5 petrol variant producing 240 bhp and 320 Nm of torque.

Engine range

Petrol engines Displacement Configuration Output Torque

T5 2.0 4-cyl in-line 240 bhp 320 Nm

T4 1.6 4 cyl in-line 180 bhp 240 Nm

Diesel engines Displacement Configuration Output Torque

D5 2.4 5-cyl in-line 205 bhp 420 Nm

D3 2.0 5-cyl in-line 163 bhp 400 Nm

1.6 D DRIVe 1.6 4-cyl in-line 115 bhp 270 Nm

SAFETY: THE INDUSTRY LEADER

The all-new Volvo V60 is packed with high-tech solutions that actively help the driver avoid accidents – and help protect the occupants if an accident is unavoidable.

Pedestrian Detection with full auto brake

Pedestrian Detection with full auto brake can detect if a pedestrian steps out into the road in front of the car. If the driver does not respond in time, the car can automatically activate the brakes.

In an emergency situation the driver first receives an audible warning combined with a flashing light in the windscreen’s head-up display. In order to prompt an immediate, intuitive reaction, this warning resembles a brake light. At the same time, the car’s brakes are pre-charged. If the driver does not react to the warning and an accident is imminent, full braking power is automatically applied.

Pedestrian Detection with full auto brake can avoid a collision with a pedestrian at speeds up to 35 km/h if the driver does not react in time. At higher speeds, the focus is on reducing the car’s speed as much as possible prior to impact. Speed can be reduced by up to 25 km/h.  Statistics reveal that the car’s speed has considerable importance for the outcome of the accident. A lower speed of impact means that the risk of serious injury is significantly reduced.

City Safety as standard

The new Volvo V60 also features City Safety as standard. With City Safety, the car automatically brakes if the driver fails to react in time when the vehicle in front slows down or stops – or if he or she is driving too fast towards a stationary object. The system can lessen or even entirely avoid low-speed rear-end impacts at speeds up to 30 km/h.

Volvo’s new sports wagon can naturally also be equipped with a range of additional solutions that help the driver to drive more safely, such as:

  • Driver Alert Control (DAC). A unique technology to alert tired and distracted drivers. This function monitors the car’s progress between the lane markers and warns the driver if his or her driving pattern changes in a random or uncontrolled way.
  • Lane Departure Warning (LDW) alerts the driver if the car runs across the lane markers without the turn indicator being used.
  • Blind Spot Information System (BLIS) helps detect vehicles in the offset rear blind spot on both sides of the car. A warning lamp beside the relevant door mirror comes on to alert the driver to the danger.
  • Active Xenon Lights are articulated headlights that follow the curve of the road. For best possibility illumination when driving in the dark on twisting roads

Rollover Protection System (ROPS)

The new Volvo V60 is equipped with the Roll Over Protection System (ROPS) as standard.

Advanced sensor technology ensures that the belt pre-tensioners and the inflatable curtains deploy in the event of a rollover. This, combined with the safety cage, helps reduce the risk of occupant injury in such situations.

Collision safety including improved Inflatable Curtains

In a collision situation, the well-balanced combination of high-strength steel of various grades interacts to help prevent intrusion into the passenger compartment. The front body structure of the new V60 is divided into four zones, each of which has a different task in the event of deformation. The transverse engine installation creates more space for deformation and helps reduce the risk of intrusion into the passenger compartment in a frontal collision.

The new V60 has safety belt pre-tensioners in all the seats. The Pre-Prepared Restraints (PRS) regulate the airbags and the safety belt load limiters to optimise protection depending on the force of the impact.

Among its various other safety systems the V60 also has an advanced Side Impact Protection System, seat-mounted side airbags, Inflatable Curtains and the Whiplash Protection System – one of the market’s most effective systems for avoiding neck injuries.

The SIPS (Side Impact Protection System) has been further developed in the new V60 to cover a wider range of collision scenarios, for instance if the car is hit from the side ahead of, or behind, the passenger compartment. This has been made possible through the unique use of a gyro to control activation of the inflatable curtains, side-impact airbags and safety belt pre-tensioners. This is possible by combining information from sensors in the car with data from the gyro that is part of the Dynamic Stability and Traction Control (DSTC) system.

“The new Volvo V60 is a worthy representative of our aim to build the world’s safest cars – and it marks yet another step towards our goal of no fatalities or serious injuries in a new Volvo car by the year 2020,” says Thomas Broberg, Senior Safety Advisor at Volvo Cars.

INSIDE THE ALL-NEW VOLVO V60

The interior of the V60 sports wagon is a clear example of how Volvo Cars’ designers have added excitement and contrast to the Scandinavian design tradition’s rational simplicity and functionality. The V60 is a five-seater car offering comfortable space for all its occupants.

  • The 40/20/40-split rear seat and the fold-flat front passenger seat make it possible to combine passengers and load in a very flexible way. Each backrest in the three-piece rear seat is folded with exceptional ease to create an entirely flat load floor. The rear seat headrests can be folded electrically.
  • The load area has been designed for maximum utilisation of each available millimetre. The 1095 millimetre wide tailgate in combination with extra space behind the wheel housings and under the load floor is an example of the systematic approach adopted to ensure generous load capacity. The load area has a capacity of 430 litres with the rear seats in place.
  • The rear seat can be specified with integrated child booster cushions in the two outer seats.

“Load-carrying ability is not just about volume. It is equally about the load space’s shape and flexibility. We have worked hard to free-up load-carrying area and to provide capacity that truly makes a difference to the car owner. We have created the extra centimetres you need to bring with you those items that give life that added spice,” says Jonathan Disley, head of interior design in the new V60.

Easily accessible storage space is an important part of interior comfort and convenience. For instance, the new V60 has a storage compartment behind the centre stack and another in the centre console armrest, while in the door pockets there is space for books, maps and soft-drink bottles and cans. Both the front and rear seat occupants have seat pockets within easy reach.

In the field of comfort, there are features such as the optional Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), which automatically maintains a set gap to the vehicle in front. What is new is that the Adaptive Cruise Control operates at speeds below 30 km/h, all the way down to standstill in a car with automatic transmission.

The new V60 can be equipped with parking sensors front and rear and a Park Assist camera at the rear. A camera in the front grille with a 180° field of vision is a new Volvo feature that is available as an accessory. The camera is a great asset when manoeuvring in crossings with limited view or when driving out from a tight and narrow exit such as a parking garage. The image from the camera is displayed on the 7-inch screen in the centre stack.

Entirely new Infotainment system

The new V60, like the all-new S60, gets an all-new Infotainment system where information is presented on a five-inch or seven-inch colour screen in the instrument panel. The screen has a high position to make it easy for the driver to keep his or her eyes on the road.

The Volvo V60 is one of the first car models in the world to use the Audyssey Laboratories MultEQ technology. MultEQ eliminates the distortion caused by the car cabin’s acoustics, providing crisp, clear sound with improved soundstage for everyone in the car.

In addition to the top-of-the line Premium Sound, which comes with a 7-inch screen, there are another three audio systems, all of which have been tailored for the V60 by Volvo Cars’ own experts.

Dolby Digital gives perfect concert quality

The new Volvo V60 can be specified with Dolby Digital which provides a more distinct surround-sound audio experience from Dolby Digital soundtracks. The result is perfect concert quality when listening to live-recorded music. The system also features Dolby Pro Logic II Surround that transforms ordinary stereo content into rich, full-range surround sound.

Clean Zone Interior gives enhanced comfort

The Electronic Climate Control system, ECC, offers automatic control of both temperature and ventilation. The car can be equipped with IAQS (Interior Air Quality System) which prevents particles and unpleasant odours from entering the cabin.

To offer highly sensitive passengers even better climate comfort, the system has also been equipped with Clean Zone Interior, a system based on ECC and IAQS. When the car is unlocked using the remote control, the passenger compartment is automatically ventilated if the outdoor temperature exceeds 10 degrees Celsius.

“The interior of the new V60 is all about innovative design in two areas: form and technology. The design is characterised by sporty freshness down to the smallest detail. The technological aspect includes all those smart solutions that contribute to a driving experience unlike that of any other Volvo – from collision avoidance safety and comfort systems to infotainment and audio excellence of absolute world class,” concluded Tomas Ahlborg.

European target group

The initial annual target for the new Volvo V60 is 50,000 cars, 90 per cent of which will go to European buyers. The five largest markets are Sweden, United Kingdom, Netherlands, Italy and Germany. The new V60 will be built at the Volvo Cars production plant in Torslanda, Sweden and first cars will be delivered to customers in Ireland in January 2011.

Volvo V60 Side

V60 Rear

Volvo V60 Front

Machineshift.com

MERCEDES-BENZ PREPARES FOR R-CLASS ARRIVAL

Monday, August 23rd, 2010

MERCEDES-BENZ PREPARES FOR R-CLASS ARRIVALMercedes-Benz is preparing the way for the arrival in August of their versatile, new-generation R-Class following a makeover that has seen the introduction of a number of new design changes.

This crossover model, which bridges the gap between their luxury saloon and MPV models, comes with a completely redesigned front section. Particularly eye-catching is its more striking, contoured bonnet and pronounced arrow-shaped front dominated by a wider, higher, more steeply angled grille.

Other improvements include changes to wings, side skirts, headlamps and bumper. Inside, the interior versatility of its predecessor is retained through a combination space and comfort.

In Ireland, focus will be placed on the low-consumption R 300CDI BlueEFFICIENCY model which comes on the market at EUR79,225 ex works. Consuming some seven percent less fuel than its predecessor (at 7.6 litres per 100kms), this V6 version has a top speed of 215km/h with a 0-100km/h time of 9.5 seconds and a CO2 rating of 199-206g/km.

Sharing the billing here will be the R 300CDI 4-Matic version at EUR84,700 (ex works). This second V6 version also combines low fuel consumption of 8.5 litres per 100kms with high performance mirrored in a top speed of 235kms/h and 0-100kms of 7.6 secs. CO2 rating is 223g/km.

All R-Class models are equipped with the latest-generation 7G-TRONIC automatic transmission.

Mercedes Benz R-Class.jpg

Machineshift.com

Peugeot Unveils new 508 Range

Monday, August 23rd, 2010

Peugeot has unwrapped the first official photographs of its new 508 saloon and SW models, ahead of their international unveiling at this October’s Paris Motor Show. The Peugeot 508 range combines strong design and good looks with award winning engines, class-leading driveability, high levels of quality and safety to offer a large, comfortable family saloon. The 508 will go on sale in Europe at the beginning of 2011 and in Ireland by spring 2011.

The 508’s elegant exterior design is perfectly attuned to the brand’s new style lines, reminiscent of the stunning SR1 concept car, which was unveiled in January. The hi-tech interior oozes high quality and rewards both the driver and passengers with exceptional interior space and comfort and a very generous boot.

Thanks to a careful blend of light weight materials, excellent aerodynamics and Peugeot’s award-winning, low CO2 petrol and diesel engines, the 508 boasts tremendous environmental efficiency. The 508 range will also include the revolutionary new Peugeot e-HDi system, a new-generation Stop & Start system with improved driveability and economy. A few months after launch, HYbrid4 technology will be introduced, with its 200bhp and all-wheel drive potential, emitting just 99 g/km of CO2 (or zero in electric mode).

With the 508, the popular 407 saloon replacement, the Peugeot Marque reaffirms its presence in one of its traditional strong markets; the large family car segment. With a clear ambition of moving from 10th to 7th place in the world by 2015, the new Peugeot 508 will play an important part in growing Peugeot’s international market share. Peugeot will first produce the new 508 in Rennes-La-Janais, in France for the European market and then from 2011 in Wuhan, China, where the Marque has big ambitions.

The 508 will be presented to the public for the first time at the beginning of October at the Paris Motor Show. The 508 will be available in two body styles: a saloon (with a length of 4.79 m) and SW (4.81 m). Prices and specifications for the Irish market will be announced closer to launch.

508 saloon

508 interior

508 saloon and SW

Machineshift.com

John Deere Gator gets new olive livery

Monday, August 23rd, 2010

John Deere has introduced a new version of its popular XUV 850D high performance 4×4 utility vehicle, in olive and black livery. This model is aimed at customers who prefer an alternative to the usual bright green and yellow colour scheme, including shooting and countryside estates and farms, outdoor adventure centres and wildlife parks.

This olive and black Gator is fitted as standard with aggressive tread, off-road style tyres, but otherwise is the same specification as the existing XUV model, complete with a steel tipping cargo box. It is available with all the same attachments and options, including road homologation, and the standard four post ROPS frame can also be upgraded to a deluxe full glass cab if required.

The XUV Gator is specifically designed for off-road and rough-terrain performance, and is based on a hydroformed steel frame for increased durability. It also offers a true four-wheel drive traction system – activated by a simple dash-mounted electronic rocker switch, this on-demand system incorporates lockable front and rear differentials to maintain excellent traction in the toughest ground conditions.

The XUV Gator’s 24hp (850cc) liquid-cooled, three-cylinder Yanmar diesel engine is the most powerful and quickest accelerating in its class, with the fastest top speed at 30mph in high range. Advanced clutching ensures smooth power delivery and engine braking assistance from the dual range, continuously variable transmission.

All round independent suspension offers improved handling, operator comfort and ride quality, with 175mm (7in) of suspension travel and 270mm (nearly 11in) of ground clearance. This enables the XUV Gator to follow rough and bumpy terrain with ease while keeping all four wheels firmly on the ground, whether the vehicle is fully loaded or unladen. Maximum payload capacity is 635kg and towing capacity is 590kg on level terrain.

Additional operator friendly features include a glove box and storage compartment, cup holder, 12V power outlet and integrated 50mm (2in) rear hitch. Base UK list price of the new John Deere olive and black XUV 850D utility vehicle, which is available in limited numbers this summer before full production starts in November, is £11,033 plus VAT.

New olive John Deere XUV Gator B

Machineshift.com