Vehicle product & design: Latest news and analysis articles

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Management briefing - Paris motor show preview

23 September 2016 | Glenn Brooks

This, the first of two management briefing reports concerning the 2016 Paris Mondial de l’Automobile, offers a sneak preview of the confirmed and likely world debut cars and concept vehicles.

Drilling down into Toyota's latest hybrid tech

15 September 2016 | Graeme Roberts

We recently reviewed the latest, fourth generation Toyota Prius. Now, Graeme Roberts looks at Toyota's hybrid sales success and some of the new technology in the first car built on the automaker's New Global Architecture platform.

Volkswagen Caravelle - taking the fifty grand bus

14 September 2016 | Glenn Brooks

Volkswagen has dipped into its heritage with a new edition of the Caravelle. Two-tone paint and chrome-effect wheels are links to the split-screen Type 1 model of the 1960s. Yet at a recommended retail price of GBP53,610 (US$70,727), this is not quite the affordable converted van of yesteryear.

XC90 T8 - the sixty four thousand pound Volvo

9 September 2016 | Glenn Brooks

Volvo’s transformation into a maker of sometimes high-priced luxury cars continues: it’s now possible to pay £64,000 (US$84,813) for the T8 version of the XC90. Is this PHEV worth that sort of money?

Latest interviews

Geely/Volvo architecture cooperation bears fruit

18 May 2016 | Graeme Roberts

Peter Mertens, senior vice president, research and development, Volvo Car Group, describes the cooperative development of the new Compact Modular Architecture (CMA) with parent Geely as "good relations" though the start was a little rocky as culture and time zones took some adjusting to, on both sides.

Delphi CTO targets user cockpit experience

12 April 2016 | Dave Leggett

Delphi’s Chief Technology Officer, Jeff Owens, has told just-auto that the automotive battle for the Millennials is being played out in the user experience in the car cockpit.

Latest news

Lexus concept features hologram displays

23 September 2016 | Graeme Roberts

The Lexus UX Concept, making its world debut at the Paris show, presents a vision for imaginative, forward-thinking technologies that will provide vehicle occupants with a fully immersive experience.

Fiat UK acknowledges Mazda hand with Spider

22 September 2016 | Chris Wright

While the Spider was the star of the show, the elephant in the room was not ignored.

Paris show world debuts list - Ferrari GTC4Lusso T

22 September 2016 | Glenn Brooks

Ferrari will reveal an additional version of the four-wheel drive, four-seat GTC4Lusso at the Paris motor show. The GTC4Lusso T retains the four-wheel steering system of the existing V12-engined car but is powered by a 449kW/610CV 3,855cc turbocharged V8 and has rear-wheel drive.

Kia chief designer marks 10 years

22 September 2016 | Graeme Roberts

Peter Schreyer has now headed new car design at Kia for 10 years, a period during which the brand’s global sales have risen from around 1.1m cars in 2005 to 3.05m in 2015.

Magna accelerates work on active aerodynamics

21 September 2016 | Dave Leggett

With global automakers continuing to address the challenge of increasing fuel economy and reducing carbon emissions in their vehicles, Magna International has accelerated its development work in active aerodynamic systems, an innovative technology it says is "designed to help auto manufacturers clear regulatory hurdles".

China's LeEco raises $1bn for electric sportscar

21 September 2016 | Tony Pugliese

Chinese internet media company LeEco has raised just over US$1bn in an initial fundraising round for its electric sportscar project that aims to rival Tesla Motors, according to local reports.

US wants to approve autonomous cars before launch

20 September 2016 | Graeme Roberts

The Obama administration has said it was considering seeking the power to review and approve technology for self-driving cars before they hit the road and said US states should not set separate rules.

Holden sources new Astra from Poland

20 September 2016 | Graeme Roberts

The first new-generation, RHD, Holden-badged Opel Astra five-door hatchback destined for Australia and New Zealand was built in Poland at General Motors' Gliwice plant rather than Ellesmere Port in England.

Ford shoots for 100K a year AVs

16 September 2016 | Dave Leggett

Ford is aiming to have an autonomous vehicle in commercial operation by 2021 and wants to have ‘high volume’ (over 100,000 units a year) to maximise the business opportunity via ride-hailing or ride-sharing.

Chevrolet announces Bolt EV range 238 miles

13 September 2016 | Graeme Roberts

Chevrolet has announced the upcoming 2017 Bolt EV, on sale later this year, will have an EPA-estimated range of 238 miles, well up on rivals such as the Nissan Leaf which are now good for about 125 miles.

AvtoVAZ updates Vesta model

13 September 2016 | Dave Leggett

AvtoVAZ says it has started shipping updated versions of its Lada Vesta sedan with a new Luxe trim level that includes additional airbags and climate control.

Porsche to unveil PHEV Panamera in Paris

9 September 2016 | Graeme Roberts

Porsche will unveil the third model in its redesigned Panamera line at the Paris show: the 4 E-Hybrid with controlled all-wheel drive and an electric range of 30 miles (50km) in the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC). The vehicle generates some 462 hp of total system power and delivers fuel consumption figures of 2.5 l/100 km (NEDC) for plug-in hybrid models. That corresponds to CO2 emissions of 56 g/km.

2016 CHENGDU SHOW - world premieres

7 September 2016 | Glenn Brooks

The following concepts and production vehicles were world debuts at CDMS 2016, the 19th Chengdu motor show.

Honda Brazil's new Civic makes debut high priced

5 September 2016 | Fernando Calmon

This year in Brazil has been notable for medium-size model renewals. This started with an update for Nissan's Sentra, followed by the redesigned Chevrolet Cruze, and now comes the 10th-generation Honda Civic sedan.

Revised Tesla Model S even quicker, longer range

24 August 2016 | Dave Leggett

Tesla has revised the Model S and added a larger battery pack which gives the car jaw-dropping acceleration and a longer range on full charge.

Kia readies Rio 4G for Paris show

24 August 2016 | Graeme Roberts

Kia's fourth-generation Rio -  a model assembled and sold widely across the world - will make its world debut on 29 September at the Paris show.

Holden's Colorado no longer 'beaut ute' down under

24 August 2016 | Graeme Roberts

General Motors' Australian unit Holden has dropped the decades-old Antipodean term for pick up truck - 'ute' (for 'utility') - and has adopted instead the US term to call its redesigned, Thai-built midsize Colorado a 'truck'.

Opel Russelsheim starts updated Zafira production

24 August 2016 | Graeme Roberts

The first updated Opel Zafira has been built in Opel’s Rüsselsheim plant. Production started with a red unit with OPC line package, equipped with AFL LED technology (adaptive forward lighting) and radar-based adaptive cruise control.

Daimler JV extends Denza EV's range to 400km

23 August 2016 | Graeme Roberts

Daimler said it had broadened its new energy vehicles (NEV) line with the new Denza, extended-range 400, a 'made in China, for China' electric vehicle built by Shenzhen BYD Daimler New Technology joint venture (BDNT).

Borgward to put designer on management board

23 August 2016 | Graeme Roberts

Borgward Group, which has revived the once well known German brand that ceased car making early in the 1960s, said it would the first German automaker to create a board of management position for design.

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