Saturday, December 29, 2012

Ford Kuga, 2013

  •  Ford Kuga, 2013

The all-new Ford Kuga, unveiled at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show, builds on the huge success of the current model and introduces new technologies as well as a more streamlined, stylish and spacious design.

Technological improvements include the introduction of a hands-free automatic tailgate which can be opened and closed simply by sweeping a foot under the rear bumper.

"Innovative technologies like the hands-free automatic tailgate clearly set new Kuga apart from its competitors," said Ford of Europe's chairman and CEO, Stephen Odell. "But more importantly they provide customers with everyday advantages. All-new Kuga is more spacious, dynamic and capable than the current model, which continues to be popular with our European customers."

Ford's advanced voice control, device integration and connectivity interface SYNC will also be available from launch. It will include Emergency Assistance, which upon detecting airbag deployment or activation of the emergency fuel shut-off within the car, uses the on board GPS locator and Bluetooth-paired device to set up an emergency call and provide GPS co-ordinates, in the local language, for the emergency response.

A range of driver assistance technologies including the parallel parking aid Active Park Assist, and sensor-based Blind Spot Information System, which indicates with a warning light in the door mirror that a potential hazard is in the driver's blind spot, will also be available.

The all-new Ford Kuga features 82-litres more boot-space than the current model, while the rear seats fold flat at the touch of a button.

Ford of Europe's executive design director, Martin Smith said: "We've evolved the vehicle to incorporate more space and a faster silhouette, a more precise execution and a higher quality feel."

The smart Ford Kuga AWD system pre-emptively reassesses conditions 20 times faster than it takes to blink an eye, readjusting the AWD power split to give the driver the best blend of handling and traction. Dynamics and cornering control are improved by the introduction of the Torque Vectoring Control (TVC) system first found on the new Focus.

Engines available from launch include 140PS and 163PS versions of Ford's popular 2.0-litre TDCi diesel engine, with Ford Powershift automatic gearbox an option. Ford Kuga will also offer the 1.6-litre EcoBoost petrol engine, already available in Ford Focus and C-MAX and impressing with its strong torque delivery and high fuel efficiency.

The Ford Kuga aligns with the One Ford strategy as a global vehicle, on sale worldwide, including North America, where it is badged Escape. One of ten cars to be built on the same C-segment platform as the new Ford Focus, European customers can expect the all-new Kuga in late 2012.
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Audi A4 Avant, 2013

  •  Audi A4 Avant, 2013

A bestseller has become even more attractive: Audi has updated the A4 series. New solutions for efficiency, driving dynamics and infotainment, along with an even more attractive design, attest the "Vorsprung durch Technik" achieved by the A4 Sedan, the A4 Avant, the A4 allroad quattro and the S4.

The A4 is Audi's bestseller - for 39 years now and in its eighth generation. The brand has sold ten million such models in total. The Audi A4, with its elegance, sportiness and emotional appeal, forms the centerpiece of the Audi brand. And now the design has become even more clearly defined and striking in all models - the Sedan, the Avant, the allroad quattro and the S4.

The new look further accentuates the horizontal lines at the front end. The engine hood is more arched, the upper corners of the single frame grille are tapered, and the cross ribs and the Audi rings are highlighted three-dimensionally. The grille is painted gray, with high-gloss black on the six-cylinder models or in combination with the S line exterior package. The redesigned bumpers are striking with their angular air inlets, their revised grilles and the flat front fog lights. The Audi A4 allroad quattro is distinguished by its grille's horizontal chrome applications and by the round fog lights.

The headlights have also changed, with a slight wave at the bottom edges, and a re-arranged interior. Xenon plus headlights are available from Audi on request. The LED daytime running lights form a narrow, optically homogeneous band that remains open in the vicinity of the xenon lens. The adaptive light together with dynamic and static cornering lights are available on request.

The tail lights reflect the shape of the headlights, and in combination with xenon plus have homogeneous strips of LEDs. The bumper with its diffuser insert has been redesigned, with the exhaust system always terminating in two tailpipes.

There is a selection of 15 paint finishes, including four new tones. The Sedan and the Avant offer the S line exterior package, while the Avant also includes a roof spoiler.

The modifications have changed the dimensions only by a few millimeters. The Audi A4 Sedan and the Avant each have a length of 4.70 meters (15.42 ft), while the A4 allroad quattro and the S4 are 4.72 meters (15.49 ft) long. The wheelbases for all models are 2.81 meters (9.22 ft), and the width is 1.83 and 1.84 meters, respectively (6.0 and 6.04 ft). The height varies between 1.41 and 1.50 meters (4.63 and 4.92 ft) depending on the body version.

The interior of the Audi A4 models has also been refined. Audi offers a wide selection of new steering wheels with chrome and high-gloss inlays, with the leather sport steering wheel also featuring a flattened lower rim. The steering arm and the ignition key have been modified. High-gloss applications and the slender chrome trim at the controls add elegance to the interior.

The elaborate finish makes operation even simpler and more intuitive. The MMI navigation plus system now features four instead of eight buttons, with a script function integrated in the volume control dial. Other improvements concern operation of the automatic transmission, the efficient air conditioning systems, Audi drive select and the multifunction steering wheel. The seat heating and air conditioning are now directly operated at the respective buttons.

The high level of workmanship is as much a matter of course for Audi as a sure touch in the range of colors. All interior colors - except black - have been re-coordinated. The upholstery range has also been revised, with Fine Nappa leather replacing Valcona leather. The new, single-part cluster trim has been adapted in color to the interior, while the inlays are available in Aluminum Trigon, walnut dark brown and fine grain ash natural. Especially eye-catching is the Beaufort oak plywood inlay.

The interior of the S line sport package comes in black, refined with high-quality applications. 18-inch wheels or the optional 19-inch wheels and an S line sport suspension that lowers the body by 30 millimeters (1.18 in) complete the package. Audi exclusive and Audi exclusive line offer further individualized options.

The Audi A4 Sedan's luggage compartment still has its 480-liter capacity - 962 liters with the rear seats folded down (16.95 and 33.97 cubic ft). The A4 Avant and the A4 allroad quattro have 490 and 1,430 liters, respectively (17.30 and 50.50 cubic ft), with Audi offering an optional electrically operated tailgate for both models.

The new Audi A4's drive system sets new standards. The consumption levels have dropped by 11 percent on average, despite the increased power and torque of many of the engines. In the Sedan and the Avant each, Audi offers any of six TDI and four gasoline engines, with 23 possible engine-transmission combinations. All engines are supercharged direct-injection systems; the start-stop system and the recuperation system are standard throughout.

The TDI engines combine pulling power with pioneering efficiency, with the four-cylinder versions presenting extensive modifications. A new centrifugal pendulum-type absorber (in the 2.0 TDI with 100 kW, 120 kW or 130 kW with quattro drive) in the dual-mass flywheel makes engine running even more refined and quieter at low revs, for even earlier upshifting and savings of up to 0.2 liters per 100 km.

The most economical variant in the model family is the Audi A4 2.0 TDI with 100 kW (136 hp). In the Sedan, this engine needs only 4.2 liters of fuel per 100 km (56.0 US mpg) on average - a CO2 equivalent of just 112 grams per km (180.25 g/mile). The new A4 2.0 TDI with 120 kW (163 hp), also optimized for maximum efficiency, manages with 4.4 liters of diesel per 100 km (53.46 US mpg). This equates to 115 grams CO2 per km (185.07 g/mile). Both engines are available for the Sedan and the Avant.

In addition, three other four-cylinder diesel engines are available - with 88 kW (120 hp), 105 kW (143 hp) and 130 kW (177 hp). They can also be ordered for the allroad quattro, apart from the entry-level version. Three V6 TDI units complete the line. The 3.0 TDI with 150 kW (204 hp) (not for the allroad quattro) is the most efficient six-cylinder engine in its class worldwide; in the A4 Sedan it consumes an average of just 4.9 liters of fuel per 100 km (48.0 US mpg). The second variant, the 3.0 TDI, generates 180 kW (245 hp), with an especially clean diesel version.

The Audi A4 series also presents the latest state of the art in gasoline engine technology. A new highlight of the TFSI family is the new 1.8-liter engine, available for the Sedan and the Avant. The four-cylinder engine delivers sporty thrust, with a power output of 125 kW (170 hp) and 320 Nm (236.02 lb-ft) of torque. The average consumption in the Audi A4 Sedan is limited to 5.6 liters per 100 km (42.0 US mpg), or 134 grams CO2 per km (215.65 g/mile). That is a decrease in consumption of 19 percent compared with the predecessor engine.

The new 1.8 TFSI engine features many innovations: in the control of its valves and their lift, in the novel thermal management system, in the fuel injection system, in the turbocharger and in the integration of the exhaust manifold in the cylinder head. The engine weighs 3.5 kilograms (7.72 lb) less and its internal friction has sharply decreased.

The entry-level gasoline engine is the 1.8 TFSI with 88 kW (120 hp). The 2.0 TFSI - as the only spark-ignition engine also available in the Audi A4 allroad quattro - delivers 155 kW (211 hp). At the top of the line is the 3.0 TFSI in two variants. In the Audi A4 the V6, to follow a bit later, affords 200 kW (272 hp). In the sporty Audi S4 top model its power is an impressive 245 kW (333 hp).

The wide range of drivetrains is typical of Audi. A six-speed manual transmission is standard on the Sedan and Avant models with front-wheel drive; most variants offer continuously variable multitronic as an option. The quattro versions have either the manual transmission or (as of the 2.0 TDI with 130 kW (177 hp)) the seven-speed S tronic on board. The Audi A4 allroad quattro employs a manual transmission or S tronic with all engine versions.

The innovative thermal management system shortens the warm-up phase of the manual transmission, among other things, and thereby reduces friction loss. All transmissions are distinguished by convenient and precise operation, high efficiency and a wide spread of gear ratios - the long ratios in the higher gears reduces fuel consumption, while the short ratios in the lower gears benefit the dynamics.

The quattro permanent all-wheel drive is standard on the Audi A4 allroad quattro, and available in the Sedan and Avant from the 2.0 TDI with 105 kW (143 hp). The A4 family uses the self-locking center differential here. In regular driving operation it primarily transmits the engine torque to the rear wheels in the ratio of 40 to 60. If necessary, redistribution occurs within the shortest possible time. The torque vectoring function supplements the work of the center differential with finely incremented brake applications, to make handling even more precise and safer.

In the V6 quattro variants Audi offers the sport differential as a supplement, lending maximum precision and high traction to the A4 when cornering at the handling limits. The high-end component actively distributes the power between the rear wheels as required.

The chassis of the Audi A4 is striking with its sporty precision, high ride comfort and superior safety. The mounts of the rear suspension control arms and the characteristics of the shock absorbers have been even more finely tuned. Most of the components of the five-link front suspension and the trapezoidal-link rear suspension are made of aluminum.

The electromechanical power steering is new in all models of the series. The direct gear ratios convey precise road contact; slight brake applications counteract pulling to the side on unevenly slippery surfaces. The electromechanical power steering requires no energy for straight-ahead motion, thereby reducing fuel consumption by up to 0.3 liters per 100 km. This is equivalent to a reduction in CO2 emissions of up to 7 g/km (11.27 g/mile).

Another high-end feature that gives the Audi A4 a special status in its class is Audi drive select. In the basic package, the driver can switch the characteristic of the accelerator, the shift points of the automatic transmission, the power steering and the automatic air conditioning between the four modes "comfort," "auto," "dynamic" and "efficiency." If there is an onboard navigation system, the additional "individual" mode is also included.

Further modules are optional - adaptive cruise control or the cruise control system, the sport differential, the suspension with damper control and dynamic steering. By means of a superposition gear, the gear ratio is adjusted in a continuously variable manner depending on the driven speed; at the handling limits small interventions compensate for understeering and oversteering.

All front-wheel-drive versions of the Audi A4 feature the electronic stabilization program (ESP) with electronic limited slip differential. In dynamic driving the system further improves handling and safety by initiating minimum brake interventions at the front wheel that is subject to a reduced load on the inside of the curve. The large wheel brakes - with ventilated front and rear disks in many variants - offer excellent stopping power and can be precisely modulated.

All Audi A4 variants roll off the assembly line on elegant aluminum wheels. Depending on the engine version, they are 16 or 17 inches in size; tires with optimized rolling resistance belong to the 205/60 and 225/50 series. The A4 3.0 TFSI has 18-inch wheels with 245/40 series tires. The line of options ranges to 19 inches with 255/35 series tires. Four of the 18 available wheels are new designs. The A4 allroad quattro offers four independent designs.

Assistance systems
Audi offers highly developed assistance systems for the A4 family, for making driving even more relaxed. Standard on all variants is the new driver information system with break recommendation - it detects and draws the driver's attention to deviations from typical driving behavior on the basis of steering motions and other parameters.

The adaptive cruise control assistance system keeps the Audi A4 at a constant distance from the preceding vehicle at speeds between zero and 200 km/h (124.27 mph). If the threat of a rear-end collision becomes imminent at speeds below 30 km/h (18.64 mph), the system will execute a full brake application. Audi active lane assist supports the driver in keeping to his lane. A camera detects the lane markings and the system makes slight corrections to the steering if necessary. Audi side assist monitors the space behind the Audi A4 by radar and detects any vehicles in the blind spot, for example.

Infotainment systemsAudi offers a whole kit of state-of-the-art infotainment systems for its A4 series. The chorus CD radio with eight speakers is standard, while the MMI navigation plus system with large hard disk, color monitor, 3D graphics and DVD player forms the top of the line. Voice control and the optional digital audio broadcasting are further improvements to the system.

The high-end supplement to the MMI navigation plus system is the Bluetooth online car phone. Via Audi connect the system provides special services in the car, such as voice-controlled Google searches for points of interest and navigation with Google Earth pictures, along with Google Street View. Audi online traffic information, another such service, gives the driver the latest news on congestion along the selected route. The WLAN hotspot, another feature of the Bluetooth online car phone, allows passengers in the Audi A4 to surf the internet and send e-mails as they please with their mobile devices.

The Audi S4
The Audi S4, available in the Sedan and Avant versions, employs the most powerful engine in the line - the 3.0 TFSI with 245 kW (333 hp) and 440 Nm (324.53 lb-ft) torque. The Sedan's average fuel consumption is a mere 8.0 liters per 100 km (29.40 US mpg) - with an impressive performance: The Audi S4 accelerates in 5.0 seconds from zero to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) and achieves an electronically limited maximum speed of 250 km/h (155.34 mph).

The modified Audi S4 is identifiable from the changes to the headlights, the bumpers, the air inlets and colors. The interior also contains subtle changes in appearance. The S sport suspension and 18-inch wheels featured on the S4 deliver outstanding road grip.

The prices of the A4 have changed only slightly, despite the extensive upgrading. For example, the Audi A4 2.0 TFSI costs just 475 euros more - the sporty Sedan is now listed at 35,425 euros.
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Friday, December 28, 2012

BMW 6-Series Gran Coupe UK Version, 2013

  •  BMW 6-Series Gran Coupe UK Version, 2013

BMW will expand the 6-Series range in the UK to three models in June 2012 with the introduction of the Gran Coupé. BMW's first four-door coupé combines the elegant and sporty appearance of a classic grand tourer with the space and ease of access of an executive saloon.

A new 450hp V8 heads a range of three Twin Power Turbo engines, which also includes six-cylinder petrol and six-cylinder diesel powerplants. All three engines drive through an eight-speed automatic transmission and come with the full suite of Efficient Dynamics technologies, including Auto Start-Stop, ensuring highly responsive performance goes hand-in-hand with low fuel consumption and emissions. Extensive use of aluminium in the body and chassis reduces weight and ensures that the BMW 6-Series Gran Coupé has the agility and precision expected of a BMW.

The BMW 6-Series Gran Coupé has the proportions of a classic grand tourer coupé - characterised by a long bonnet, a sweeping roof line and a passenger compartment set towards the rear of the car - with the spaciousness and ease of access of an executive saloon. The Gran Coupé is the most spacious and practical 6-Series ever. This has been made possible by stretching the wheelbase and overall length of the 6-Series Coupé on which it is based by 113mm. The BMW 6-Series Gran Coupé is 5,007mm long, with a wheelbase of 2,968mm.

Familiar BMW design features include a 'shark nose' with a large forward leaning double-kidney grille broad air intakes and dual round Xenon or LED headlamps. The Xenon headlights use BMW's familiar double corona units, while the optional Adaptive LED Headlight units pivot in line with the car's speed, steering angle and lateral body movement during cornering. Powerful, flared wheel arches and a three-part lower air intake emphasise the wide stance of the car.

A long, flat bonnet leads upwards through the front windscreen pillars into a sweeping coupé roofline. The increase in wheelbase has allowed BMW's designers to maintain the flowing elegance of a coupé roofline while maintaining the headroom of rear passengers. Frameless aluminium doors house long side windows that emphasise the space within.

At the rear, bulging wheel arches and horizontal lines accentuate the wide track and serve as pointers to the Gran Coupé's dynamic driving style. The two-part rear LED light clusters, in the now familiar BMW L-shape, create a striking look at night with the high-level brake light extending the full width of the upper part of the rear screen.

The front of the cabin is unmistakably BMW thanks to its driver-oriented layout. The automatic gear selector, electronic handbrake and iDrive controller are mounted in the centre console which runs through to the rear of the cabin, but leaves sufficient space for a passenger to travel between the two sports seats. The BMW 6-Series Gran Coupé is fitted with lightweight seats with integral belts, developed for the 6-Series Coupé and Convertible.

The rear seat backs can be folded to expand a 460-litre luggage area to 1,265 litres. Even with four seats in use the luggage compartment will accommodate two golf bags, while an optional through-loading hatch allows for two pairs of skis to be transported.

BMW is renowned for producing award winning engines and the triumvirate powering the new 6-Series Gran Coupé are no different. All three have won their respective categories at the International Engine of the Year Awards. And in the case of the flagship 650i Gran Coupé it has just been revised for 2012 with increased power and torque.

BMW 640d
The most popular derivative of the BMW 6-Series Gran Coupé will be this model which is likely to account for circa 80 per cent of all UK sales. For drivers wanting a longdistance tourer this BMW is possibly one of the world's most sporting yet luxurious diesels. The all-aluminium 3.0-litre in-line six-cylinder unit in the 640d Gran Coupé records a combined fuel economy of 50.4mpg. With its 70-litre fuel tank it, thus, has a potential range of almost 800 miles, while its CO2 emissions have been pared down to just148g/km. This brings the double benefits of a 22 percent BIK for company car drivers and Vehicle Excise Duty of just £130 a year.

However, in performance terms the luxury model still produces 313hp at 4,400rpm and 630Nm of torque between 1,500 and 2,500rpm. It matches the 640i for acceleration from zero to 62mph with a peak time of 5.4 seconds.

BMW 640i
The 3.0-litre in-line six-cylinder engine in the BMW 640i Gran Coupé features direct injection with VALVETRONIC fully variable valve control and Double-VANOS fully variable camshaft control, and has a single twin-scroll turbocharger. With this arrangement three exhaust pipes channel air back to the turbine through one scroll while the other three do the same. In this configuration two streams of exhaust gases keep the turbocharger operating at its optimum.

The result is an engine that develops peak power of 320hp at 5,800rpm, while its maximum torque of 450Nm begins at 1,300rpm and is maintained until 4,500rpm, helping the BMW 640i Gran Coupé to accelerate from 0-62mph in 5.4 seconds. The effortless performance is complemented by combined fuel economy of 36.2mpg, with CO2 emissions of only 181g/km.

BMW 650i
A new 450hp 4.4-litre direct-injection V8 in the BMW 650i Gran Coupé is the pinnacle of the three-strong engine line-up. This powerplant develops its maximum power from 5,500 to 6,000rpm, with peak torque of 650Nm remaining constant from 2,000 to 4,500rpm. As with the V8 in the 6-Series Coupé and Convertible, the turbochargers are uniquely positioned in the vee between the cylinder banks with one turbocharger feeding one side of the engine and the other side feeding the other bank.

The new engine has the addition of VALVETRONIC variable valve timing, which improves driveability, performance and efficiency. Thus acceleration from zero to 62mph is accomplished in a mere 4.6 seconds, yet the car is capable of a combined fuel consumption of 32.1mpg and CO2 emissions of just 206g/km.

Efficient Dynamics
Like any BMW, the 6-Series Gran Coupé benefits from Efficient Dynamics technologies, which includes Auto Start-Stop to ensure zero emissions when the car is stationary in traffic. This is accompanied by Brake Energy Regeneration when slowing down or stopping, on-demand management of ancillary components, electro-mechanical power steering, a detachable air conditioning compressor and active aerodynamics to reduce drag.

In addition, all models come with ECO PRO mode within Drive Performance Control. This promotes a more relaxed driving style by adjusting the engine management system, reducing accelerator sensitivity and changing the gearshift characteristics. At the same time, electronically operated functions such as the climate control system are put into maximum efficiency mode.

On all versions of the BMW 6-Series Gran Coupé power is transmitted to the road by an eight-speed sports automatic transmission. With its extremely fast gear changes this unit is built for sporty driving, comfortable shifting and optimised efficiency. It is operated using the electronic gear selector on the centre console. For manual gear changing, this transmission comes with steering wheel-mounted paddle shifts.

The BMW 6-Series Gran Coupé benefits from a lightweight chassis featuring extensive use of aluminium. It is based on double wishbones at the front and a fully independent multi-link axle at the rear, with the renowned Adaptive Drive package available as an option. The standard configuration allows for the optimum in suspension geometry for a road car, while the Adaptive Drive package builds on this for even greater variety.

Adaptive Drive is a system that allows the driver to choose the set-up of their own car, comprising Variable Damper Control and Dynamic Drive active anti-roll stability management. It allows the car to uniquely offer a firm suspension set-up for sporty driving while softening bumps in way a car with much more comfort-orientated setting should the driver feel so inclined. Controlled electronically, the unique and innovative new damper system, in which the inbound and rebound strokes are independent of each other, adjust both to the road surface and the driver's style of motoring.

Dynamic Drive automatically reduces side roll of the car in bends and in sudden changes of direction, with sensors determining by how much motors in the front and rear anti-roll bars should build up counteracting forces to keep the car level.

Drive Performance Control allows drivers to vary the responsiveness of the gearbox, steering, accelerator and the level of assistance provided by the Dynamic Stabilty Control. It has four settings ECO PRO, Comfort, Sport and Sport+.

Electro-mechanical power steering is standard and can be combined with the optional Integral Active Steering system. This consists of Active Steering for the front axle with a steering rear axle. The steering angle and power assistance at both ends of the car are controlled with the help of electric motors, adding to the agility of the 6-Series Gran Coupé.

Connected Drive
The latest generation of BMW Connected Drive in the new BMW 6-Series Gran Coupé includes an array of industry-leading intelligent safety and driver assistance systems including traffic information, emergency call functions, online information, a telephone enquiry services, on-board camera and sensor information, comfort and infotainment.

BMW Assist, part of BMW Connected Drive, ensures that drivers of the new BMW 6-Series Gran Coupé are constantly in contact with the outside world, making them feel safe and able to call on help for all manner of events.

Drivers can access news and information via the internet and SMS, have 24-7 call centre help and are able to receive locations and notes sent to the car. This is all at the time safe in the knowledge that should they be involved in an incident, emergency services can be notified or 999 operators patched straight through to the cabin courtesy of the SOS emergency call function.

The SOS emergency function remains active whether the subscription for other services is continued or not. The subscription is complimentary for the first three years of ownership, and £120 annually thereafter. It works when sensors in the BMW Assist system recognise an accident has occurred. A call is instantly and automatically put through to the emergency services, and exact co-ordinates of the car sent through too. The 999 call centre will also know if the call was triggered manually by pushing the SOS button located in the car, or automatically through sensors. The system also allows the operator to speak to occupants.

Among many useful features, the driver can be put in contact with BMW's Customer Service centre, which can help with finding destinations such as hotels or restaurants. Also RSS feeds from websites can be sent to the car, there is the ability to plan routes and send messages, and even technology where a BMW Customer Service operative can unlock the car remotely.

The BMW 640i Gran Coupé and BMW 640d Gran Coupé go on sale in the UK on 2 June 2012, with the BMW 650i Gran Coupé a month later. Prices start from £61,380 OTR for a 640i SE, rising to £75,130 OTR for a 650i M Sport.

In its first full year BMW expects to sell 700 6-Series Gran Coupés. By comparison during the same period BMW would expect to sell 1,000 6-Series Coupés and 400 Convertibles.

A high standard specification
The BMW 6-Series Gran Coupé is offered in SE and M Sport trim grades, both providing exceptional levels of standard equipment, while an extensive range of active safety features and innovative driver assistance systems are optionally available.

Standard with the 640i and 640d SE models are 18-inch Star-spoke light-alloy wheels, while the 650i has 19-inch V-spoke light-alloy wheel. All models have Dakota leather upholstery, BMW Professional Navigation with 10.2" high-resolution display, front and rear Park Distance Control, Keyless Go, two-zone climate control, electronic two-way steering adjustment and heated front seats.

M Sport derivatives feature unique BMW M aerodynamic body styling, 19-inch M double-spoke light-alloys, black brake calipers, dark exhaust tailpipes, Sports seats, Anthracite headlining, high-gloss Shadowline exterior trim and Aluminium Hexagon interior trim.

The M Sport derivative is expected to account for circa 80 per cent of all BMW 6-Series Gran Coupé sales.

Optional highlights
The BMW 6-Series Gran Coupé is available with the Bang & Olufsen Advanced Audio System with Surround Sound, developed uniquely for the BMW 6-Series. Its exceptionally natural sound comes from 16 speakers distributed around the cabin, comprising of two bass speakers, seven mid-range speakers and seven tweeters, all with individual amplifiers. It recreates the acoustics of a reference listening room, through DIRAC Dimensions technology, so that all passengers enjoy the same outstanding sound quality.

Other options available include Surround-view, BMW Night Vision with pedestrian recognition, Park Assist, Lane Change warning system, Lane Departure warning system, Speed limit display and a full colour Head-up Display.
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Volkswagen Polo R WRC Concept, 2012

  • Volkswagen Polo R WRC Concept, 2012

With the newly developed Polo R WRC, Volkswagen Motorsport is presenting a road-going prototype for the FIA World Rally Championship. 
The "hottest Polo ever" - as it was called by Volkswagen Head of Development Dr. Ulrich Hackenberg even at its first official airing - will be starting its tour around the globe from 2013 at numerous WRC races. At the heart of this racing version beats a 1.6 l TSI engine with approx. 220 kW / 300 PS power output, which ensures impressive acceleration from naught to 100 km/h in 4.1 seconds.

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Thursday, December 27, 2012

Renault Clio, 2013


  •  Renault Clio, 2013

Taking all its different generations into account, Renault Clio stands out as one of Renault's best-selling cars, as well as a market benchmark that has generated total sales of almost 12 million cars since 1990. Today, Renault has capitalised on the model's hallmark strengths and everyday versatility to deliver New Clio which seeks to win over customers thanks to its attractive blend of emotion and solid core strengths.

New Renault Clio also champions Renault's new design identity which places the emphasis on simplicity, warmth and sensuality.

New Clio's versatility is founded on even more efficient road holding and enhanced travelling comfort, while power is provided by a choice of engines that show the way forward in terms of low fuel consumption and CO2 emissions. the range includes a diesel powerplant which returns an unbeatable 3.2 litres/100km and 83g of CO2/km.

Meanwhile, New Renault Clio boasts a spacious cabin and a particularly big boot (300dm3). it is also rigorously designed, targets the highest possible level of active and passive safety (5 stars euro NCAP new rating) and is built to Renault's exacting quality standards.

Buoyed by the passion of the teams behind its design, New Clio, like its predecessor, continues to pack features that are normally only associated with larger cars and responds to market demands in a rational, yet emotional way.

The hatchback version of New Clio will go on sale in October 2012, while Clio Estate and Clio RS are scheduled to follow in the first quarter of 2013.

New Clio: an incarnation of Renault's new design identity
New Renault Clio is the first production model to give full expression to the Renault design renaissance inspired by Laurens van den Acker. the objective was to take the style and emotion of the brand's concept cars and carry them over to production models. New Clio meets that goal.

New Clio is instantly recognisable thanks to its front-end styling which features a prominent Renault logo, set bold and upright against a gloss black background, a signature first seen on the DeZir concept car. This frontal treatment is made more distinctive still by the headlights units, which include chrome details, and LED daytime running lights.

Available exclusively in five-door form, New Renault Clio has a sporty silhouette, accentuated by the integrated rear door handles concealed close to the rear quarter lights.

New Renault Clio will be available from launch in a choice of eight body colours, four of which are new. One of these is the distinctive launch colour, Flame Red, which takes its inspiration from the DeZir concept car.

Balanced, dynamic exterior proportions which express sportiness and confidence
Renault designers paid particularly careful attention to achieving balanced proportions for New Clio. Standing at 4,062mm in length, 1,732mm wide (excluding mirrors) and 1,448mm tall, it sits 45mm closer to the ground than its predecessor. Meanwhile, the front and rear track have been significantly widened (by between 34 and 36mm).

The lower ride-height ensures an assertive stance which is also beneficial to the car's aerodynamics. pronounced shoulder lines make New Renault Clio visually distinctive.

New Clio's coupé-like silhouette is accentuated by the integrated rear door handles concealed close to the rear quarter lights.

The ratio of wheel-size to vehicle-height has been fine-tuned for a more dynamic look. The large-diameter wheels are pushed 15mm outwards compared with Clio III in order to fill and finish flush with the wheel arches. A steeply raked windscreen adds to this dynamic feel, as does the improved glass / body ratio when New Clio is seen from the side (one-third and two-thirds respectively).

A modern, welcoming, occupant-friendly interior
The desire to combine beauty with functionality shows through clearly in numerous aspects of the interior design, from the dashboard in the shape of an aircraft wing, to the neat packaging of the multimedia systems in the centre console, the availability of stowage space throughout the cabin and careful attention to detail. The wide choice of colours and the use of chrome and gloss-black highlighting add to the warmth exuded by the cabin.

New Clio's range of easily distinguishable equipment levels and interior trims provides customers with a choice of inspiring, exciting and status-enhancing ambiences.

A choice of finishes, each with its own personality
Each of the New Clio range's equipment levels and trims has its own personality and ambience. The quality of the design and materials (e.g. colour inserts in the upholstery) is apparent even in the case of the extensively-equipped entry-level version (height- and reachadjustable steering wheel, 60/40-split folding rear bench seat, electric front windows and mirrors, plus keyless entry and ignition - all of which are standard across the range).

A lavishly-appointed, range-topping 'initiale paris' version will be added in 2013.
The exact specification and name of the different equipment levels will differ in some of New Clio's markets.

A personalisation programme covering core-range versions

Both inside and outside, New Clio was designed from the very beginning to take personalisation to a new level, from the steering wheel to the side protection mouldings. there are countless combinations and buyers will be able to select a specific character for their New Clio based around one of the three decor themes: 'trendy', 'sport' or 'elegant'. there is something for every budget, while personalisation features are fitted at the factory and available for the best-selling versions.

Original and "Unmistakably Renault"
The personalisation programme is structured around three distinct decor themes ('Elegant', 'Sport' and 'Trendy'), plus a selection of configurations based on a careful match between body colour and the dominant colour of the graphics and wheels.

The personalisation programme features:
  •     Five exterior decor packs to enhance different areas of the body with chrome or colour trims.
  •     Three different roof graphics.
  •     A choice of two colours for the 16-inch diamond-effect wheels and a choice of the 17-inch diamond-effect wheels.
  •     Seven interior decor packs which highlight different parts of the cabin with colours or motifs.
  •     Four interior ambience packs which co-ordinate the colour of the dashboard colour with that of the upholstery and door panels.

For the exterior:
  •     Exterior decoration elements are available in five different finishes: Chrome, black, Red, blue and Ivory. These finishes concern the grille, rear hatch and side protective moulding trims. In addition, the door mirror housings, rear bumper apron and side protective mouldings are picked out in gloss black lacquer.
  •     The roof graphics come in a choice of three different themes: 'Elegant', 'Sport' or 'Trendy'.
  •     The 16-inch diamond-effect 'Passion' wheels are available in a choice of two colours: Black or ivory.
  •     The 17-inch diamond-effect 'Drenalic' wheels will be available from November 2012 in a choice of our colours: Black, red, Blue or ivory.
For the interior:
Interior gloss colour touches are available in a choice of four colours (black, Red, blue, or Ivory) and echo the same three themes as the exterior graphics ('Elegant', 'Sport' and 'Trendy'). These highlights concern the steering wheel, door panels, gear lever surround and air vent surrounds and are directly incorporated using a technique known as insert moulding.

In the case of the Dynamique equipment level, customers can choose from four colours for the interior ambience (black, Red, blue or Havana). These colours apply to the dashboard trim strip and door panels, with a matching colour for the upholstery fabric. A finishing touch for each ambience comes in the form of colour co-ordinated carpet mats, available as accessories.

Purposely designed
The personalisation programme emphasises New Clio's assertive character. From the very start of the project, areas lending themselves to highlighting were incorporated into the model's design. Meanwhile, quality is assured by the fact that features are assembled at the factory.

Affordable and versatile
New Clio's personalisation programme means that made-to-measure looks are now available for a versatile five-door family car. The programme covers all the different engine variants and the best-selling versions, making it an affordable reality for the bulk of the model's customers.

Create and share your favourite Clio
Examples of Clios personalised with off-the-shelf configurations will be on display at dealerships from launch date to show customers the scope of possibilities opened up by the three different personalisation themes.

A dedicated website provides a taste of the range of personalisation possibilities available for New Clio. Web users can configure and view their ideal New Clio.

Packed with innovations
New Renault Clio is poised to shake up the market by bringing a number of technological innovations to a much wider audience. true to tradition, it also establishes a new benchmark for its class in terms of its performance and equipment packages. On the multimedia front, New Renault Clio packs an unprecedented double punch for this level of range, while audio quality has been boosted by the introduction of the Renault Bass reflex system, not to mention the availability of a reversing camera among the long list of equipment...

Advanced Bluetooth radio from the entry level version
New Renault Clio features a range of Bluetooth radios with audio streaming. Occupants can enjoy music stored on portable players and also benefit from hands-free use of their telephone. The radio has access to numbers stored on the driver's cell phone (depending on telephone), while the car is equipped with its own microphone. sound processing quality has been optimised and all radios come with a jack socket and a UsB port to charge and scroll through the menus of portable music players and cell phones.

Media Nav: essential multimedia functions
New Renault Clio proposes a choice of all-new multimedia solutions. built into the centre console, the Media Nav system provides all the basic multimedia functions and is standard equipment for two of the model's three equipment levels. Thanks to its seven-inch (18cm) touchscreen display, it is intuitive to use and, in addition to the radio, includes Bluetooth® connectivity for audio streaming and hands-free telephony. Portable music players can be connected via the fasciamounted USb port or jack socket. Media Nav also incorporates Nav N Go navigation with 2D and 3D (birdview) display. The UsB port and a dedicated web interface make it easy to update NAVTEQ maps.

Renault R-Link: an integrated tablet connected to the car and the Internet
Having been first on the market with notable innovations such as steering wheel-mounted remote control of the radio (1982, R11 Electronic) and in-car navigation (1994, Safrane); after bringing keyless entry to volume cars (in 2001) and GPS navigation with high-resolution graphics (Carminat TomTom, priced at under €500 for Clio in 2009); and having launched on-board connected navigation in the shape of Carminat TomTom® LIVE for Clio, Renault continues its stream of innovations with Renault R-Link.

Available as an option for New Clio, Renault R-Link will certainly appeal to technically-minded motorists and provides a bridge between the vehicle and the connected world outside thanks to:
  •     A large seven-inch (18 cm) touchscreen display, intuitive voice commands and, a market first, a home page that can be personalised by the user for safe, simple access to key functions, without the driver having to take his or her eyes off the road.
  •     A menu with six icons which provide access to the six main functions: Navigation, Multimedia, Phone, Vehicle, Services and Applications, and System.
  •     TomTom connected navigation including LIVE services: the market's best real-time traffic information service, minimisation of journey times and fuel consumption, plus Coyote Series alerts.
  •     A connection with the car's own electronic systems permits access to an advanced eco-driving function (Driving eco²) which analyses the driver's behaviour and provides advice to help reduce fuel consumption.
  •     Renault R-Link store, the automobile world's first ever evolving Application Store. Users can easily view or download a comprehensive selection of apps from their car or computer (via 'MyRenault').
Key functions and information available on the centre console
Renault R-Link's user-friendly seven-inch (18cm) touchscreen display forms an integral part of the modern centre console and provides a full range of multimedia functions (navigation, radio, bluetooth® telephony and audio-streaming, connectivity for portable music players, connected services, 'eco' driving, etc.) in one place for maximum comfort and enjoyment.

Renault R-Link ensures that information is available as and when it is needed, thereby avoiding the driver having to take his or her eyes off the road. Renault R-Link's touchscreen display permits fingertip control which doubles up with the steering wheel-mounted remote controls for the audio and telephone functions. Renault R-Link can also be controlled using intuitive voice commands to dictate the address of a destination for navigation purposes, for example, or to call up different functions using instructions such as 'telephone', 'apps', 'send an e-mail', etc. This facility makes use of the system even more practical and safer. The Text To Speech function (TTS) permits messages or RSS feeds to be read out loud.

R-Link apps cover a wide range of useful functions:
  •     Communication: e-mails, social networking, web navigation, etc.
  •     Journey optimisation: Tom Tom LIVE services (HD Traffic, speed control warnings [where authorised], Tom Tom Places, weather forecasts, Coyote Series alerts [where available], fuel prices, location of parking places, etc.).
  •     Practical information: personal phone numbers, Yellow Pages, hotels, restaurants, etc.
  •     Mobility: multi-mode journey planning, public transport.
  •     Budget guides: 'by-the-kilometre' insurance, Renault tips, etc.
  •     Vehicle information: monitoring of vehicle servicing, owner manual, etc.
  •     Entertainment and leisure: games, information, travel information, engine sound profile, personalisation, etc.
  •     Professional use: Fleet Managers will benefit from services for their business needs thanks to the vehicle connections

The apps developed for Renault R-Link are adapted for use by motorists, either by ensuring they are simple to use or by restricting access to certain functions while on the move. For example, functions which are overly interactive or long to use may only be used when the vehicle is at a standstill.

The catalogue of apps will cover a large spectrum of uses, extending from journey optimisation (TomTom LIVE services, fuel prices, location of parking places) and vehicle information (the monitoring of servicing, etc.), to budget guides ('by-the-kilometre' insurance, Renault tips, etc.), practical help (phone numbers, Yellow Pages, etc.), communications (e-mails, social networking, R-Tweet app) and entertainment/leisure (travel information, etc.) and emergency calls.

Renault's intention is to make R-Link store the benchmark automotive app store. To achieve this, it has favoured an open innovation strategy founded on input from major partners and development companies, as well as from start-ups which are brimming over with exciting ideas in the field of connected services and apps for automotive use. Partners in France include Pages Jaunes, La Poste, I-Dispo, Elle, balumpa, Michelin, Falk, Métro, Euronews, La Fourchette, Apila and NavX.

3D Sound by Arkamys
All versions of New Renault Clio equipped with R-Link also benefit from 3D sound by Arkamys. Thanks to special digital signal processing software, this system adds depth and texture to listening pleasure thanks to spatial positioning of the sound. Drivers can select where sound is to be directed in the cabin: for their ears only, for front occupants only or for all occupants.

Plus basic multimedia functions
To cater for the rapidly expanding use of portable music players, R-Link is equipped with bluetooth audio and telephony connectivity, as well as a USB port and a jack input.

Bringing innovation to the widest possible audience
For enhanced safety and driving pleasure, nearly all the engines available for New Renault Clio incorporate hill start assist. When the driver lifts his or her foot from the brake pedal on a slope, the system - which is connected to the ESC - holds the vehicle stationary for two seconds, allowing the driver to pull away without the vehicle moving backwards. Every version of New Clio is equipped with esC, Asr traction control, ABs and emergency brake assist, as well as more direct variablerate electric power steering which ensures a level of agility that is particularly appreciable in built-up areas.

The standard equipment list also includes cruise control with speed limiter, while New Clio comes with 'motorway-mode' indicators, an extremely practical feature which produces three flashes of the indicator when preparing to overtake by lightly moving the indicator stalk.

New Renault Clio is an entirely keyless car. The key is replaced by an electronic card (depending on equipment level) which locks and unlocks the doors and permits the engine to be started without the driver removing the card from his or her pocket, bag, wallet, etc.

All versions of New Clio come with a height - and reach - adjustable steering wheel.

The long list of standard equipment is rounded off by electric, heated door mirrors, and electric front windows.

New Clio occupants benefit from plenty of practical stowage space located throughout the cabin:
  •     A tray in front of the gear lever which can hold items like a portable music player, mobile phone or portable CD player.
  •     A large seven-litre glove box capable of containing a 1.5-litre bottle of water.
  •     A 1.2-litre tray situated above the glove box.
  •     Two easy-to-access cup holders and additional stowage for small items between the seats at the foot of the centre console.
  •     Storage in the optional central armrest (almost one litre).
  •     Bins in each door designed to contain a 1.5-litre bottle of water.

A single switch allows all the windows of New Renault Clio to be demisted at the same time, while the climate control system has been improved to run even more quietly and more efficiently than that of Clio III.

A world first: the Renault Bass Reflex system
All versions of New Renault Clio are equipped with a clever sound system integrated into the front doors' loudspeakers. Known as Renault Bass Reflex, this system delivers the volume and listening enjoyment of a 30-litre home speaker enclosure. Occupants are sure to appreciate this technology which delivers more powerful bass frequencies, while at the same time pushing back saturation and distortion thresholds. The system is based on the use of vents - or ports - in the enclosure and its application is a world first for the automotive industry.

R-Sound effect: change the engine note in a click
The R-Sound effect app for Renault R-Link has seen Renault invent a means to personalise the engine sound. This new feature allows New Clio's occupants to enjoy the engine sound selected by the driver. This custom sound varies as a function of the car's speed and acceleration and is played through the vehicle's loudspeakers. It is possible to choose between the sound of a Renault Sport race car, a V6 engine or four other realistic engine sounds simply by clicking on the Renault R-Link's display. The algorithm which controls this function takes engine speed, vehicle speed and position of the accelerator pedal into account to reproduce the sound with striking realism. Parameters such as volume are easy to adjust using the touchscreen display.

Showing the way forward in terms of low fuel consumption, low CO2 emissions and driving enjoyment
Record low fuel consumption and driving enjoyment are just two of the New Renault Clio range's strong points following the introduction of new petrol and diesel engines, EDC (Efficient Dual Clutch) transmission and 'eco' driving aids which showcase the savoir-faire of Renault's engine specialists. To combine low fuel consumption and driving enjoyment, the New Renault Clio line-up features an extensively renewed range of petrol and diesel engines. The new energy TCe 90 and TCe 120 EDC petrol engines combine particularly low fuel consumption and CO2 emissions with punchy response. The latest-generation energy dCi diesel engines have also been extensively revised and permit New Renault Clio to challenge for fuel efficiency records while still contributing to driving pleasure.

New energy TCe 90 petrol engine
Turbocharged Energy TCe 90 engine. This engine is the first threecylinder engine to be produced by Renault and combines driving enjoyment with remarkable fuel efficiency.

    An 898cc turbocharged three-cylinder engine equipped with Stop&Start which delivers the performance of a 1.4-litre normallyaspirated engine.
    90 horsepower at 5,250rpm.
    A very low inertia turbo for response at low engine speeds: 135Nm at 2,500rpm (90 percent of this figure available from 1,650rpm).
    An optimised version with taller gear ratios for fuel consumption of 4.3 litres/100km and CO2 emissions of 99g/km, a saving of 21 percent compared with the TCe 100 engine it supersedes.

New energy dCi 90 diesel engine
The Energy family of engines has been extended with the introduction of a new 90-horsepower version of the 1.5 dCi which is equipped with Stop&Start:
    A four-cylinder 1.5-litre engine with peak torque of 220Nm available from as low as 1,750rpm (a gain of 20Nm compared with the current dCi 90).
    90 horsepower at 4,000rpm.
    An optimised version with taller gear ratios qualifies for the Renault eco² signature thanks to fuel consumption of just 3.2 litres/100km, equivalent to CO2 emissions of 83g/km.

A new TCe 120 engine mated to six-speed EDC dual clutch automatic transmission
A first for Renault in the b segment: New Renault Clio will be available with the new, particularly responsive TCe 120 engine mated to a sixspeed EDC (Efficient Dual Clutch) gearbox:
    A four-cylinder petrol 1.2-litre engine which delivers performance equivalent to that of a 1.6-litre normally-aspirated engine.
    Direct fuel-injection and turbocharging for maximum power of 120hp and peak torque of 190Nm at 2,000rpm.

This engine will become available during the first half of 2013 and will figure among the most efficient and most powerful powerplants in its class.

The availability of the responsive and fuel-efficient EDC dual clutch gearbox for the dCi 90 engine from the first half of 2013 will see the New Renault Clio range bring the pleasure and driving comfort associated with this sort of automatic transmission to a wider audience.

Ultralow rolling resistance tyres
Depending on market and version, New Clio will be fitted with ultra-low rolling resistance tyres. Thanks to their specific compound, these tyres contribute to reducing fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.

Tools designed to promote eco-driving
New Renault Clio also comes with a range of efficient solutions designed to help drivers reduce their fuel consumption and CO2 emissions:
  •     An 'eco' mode can be activated at the push of a button to modify the vehicle's performance characteristics and reduce fuel consumption by up to 10 percent.
  •     The dashboard display's Driving style indicator (green, yellow, orange) and Gear Shift Indicator (GSI) help drivers adjust their driving style with a view to achieving fuel consumption savings.
  •     The Driving eco² function built into Renault R-Link provides a range of data aimed at helping drivers to analyse the way they drive and take corrective measures to reduce their fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.

Robust, agile and comfortable
Throughout its lifetime, Renault Clio has delivered qualities usually associated only with larger cars. Based on the Renault-Nissan Alliance's B platform, New Clio offers levels of comfort, cabin space and low noise that are unmatched within its segment. Not only is it more agile than before, but it is also an average 100kg lighter than its forebear.

A proven, quality chassis
Like Clio III, New Clio is built on the b platform that has underpinned almost 20 other models in the Alliance portfolio. This chassis' abilities have already been widely praised, but it has now been fine-tuned with a longer wheelbase and wider track, as well as an in-depth weight reduction programme.

Enhanced road manners
New Renault Clio's suspension combines driving precision with reduced noise and vibration levels. stability and road holding have both been enhanced by the extended wheelbase (+14mm, to 2,589mm) and wider track (+34-36mm).

The Macpherson-type front suspension is linked to a right-angled triangular lower wishbone with twin bushes. This configuration blends sharp handling with excellent comfort and minimises the effect of longitudinal and transverse loads. A high level of transverse torsional stiffness also benefits road holding without compromising the car's ability to soak up longitudinal shocks, which is vital for the comfort of occupants. The rigid sub-frame guarantees responsive handling and also improves steering precision.

The rear suspension comprises a programmed-deflection torsion beam with coil springs. To optimise cornering stability, an anti-roll bar is incorporated as part of the set-up and effective shock absorption is assisted by bump stops that are now made from polyurethane. These are more progressive than older designs and add further to the comfort delivered by New Renault Clio.

The optimised calibration of the electrically-assisted power steering enables drivers to feel immediately at one with New Clio. It is more direct than before, thanks to a quicker steering rack (now 2.71 turns lock to lock) and the car is both more manoeuvrable and nicer to drive - especially in town. It has a 10.6-metre turning circle. The gearshift action has also been improved, thanks to the use of pendulum weights and carbon synchromesh rings that ensure faster, smoother changes.

Generous dimensions and cabin space
New Clio measures 4,062mm in length, 1,732mm in width and has a 2,589mm wheelbase. Front and rear track are wider than those on Clio III, by 34 and 36mm, while the lower centre of gravity provides further handling refinement. The generously proportioned cabin includes a facility to adjust the height of the driver's seat by up to 70mm, which underlines the attention that has been paid to maximising comfort. The steering wheel can also be adjusted for both height and reach. Luggage can be stowed in the spacious boot, rated at 300dm3 (VDA) which is a 12dm3 improvement over Clio III.

The 100kg diet plan
New Clio is approximately 100kg lighter than previous-generation models, thanks to optimisation work in several areas, including:
  •     The use of very high elastic limit (VHEL) steel for the body's superstructure.
  •     The introduction, on certain models, of a tailgate made entirely of thermoplastic (polypropylene), which saves approximately 3kg and benefits fuel consumption.
  •     A smaller fuel tank, the capacity of which has been reduced from 55 to 45 litres. The loss of 10 litres will have no impact on fuel range, thanks to the economy gains that have been made.
  •     Other components to have had their weight optimised (without affecting their performance), include the wheels, exhaust system, engine mountings, door stops, dashboard cross member, floor pan, braking system, anti-roll bar (now hollow), drive shafts and dashboard insulation (now featuring three layers of material).

A level of quality associated with larger saloons
Ever since the launch of the original Clio, the model has packed features more commonly associated with much larger cars. in addition to being extensively equipped, however, it also delivers outstanding active and passive safety. Carefully assembled in the interests of long-term reliability, New Clio benefits from Renault's hallmark quality.

The highest safety standards even at entry level
Renault committed to achieving very high standards of active and passive safety when designing New Clio. Today, EuroNCAP ratings are based on four chief criteria, namely adult, child and pedestrian protection, plus driver aids. Another development means that vehicles are now assessed on the basis of their entrylevel versions (i.e. the least well-equipped in terms of standard safety features). based on the new evaluation procedure, New Clio achieved a maximum EuroNCAP rating of five stars.

New Clio incorporates: passive safety on three fronts
Adult protection: a reinforced structure, high-efficiency frontal airbags, lateral head and thorax airbags, a pressure sensor to detect impending impacts, seat belts with pre-tensioners and load limiters (pre-tensioners for front seats only), anti-whiplash head rests, a luggage partition and 'Fix4sure' anti-submarining front and rear seats.

Child protection: three-point Isofix child seat anchorage for three seats (front passenger seat and two outer rear seats) and four homologated seat belt anchorage points.

Pedestrian protection: particular attention was paid to this aspect of passive safety. From the outset, the design incorporated several features to minimise the risk of impact injury, notably to the head, legs and hips. The bottom of the front bumper is sufficiently rigid to prevent flexing at knee level but has a softer upper part to lessen potential leg injuries. The bonnet and front panel were conceived to reduce the severity of head and hip injuries, while the foot of the windscreen, bottom of the window bay and dashboard were designed to minimise the likelihood of cuts in the case of impact to the head.

A communicative chassis for enhanced active safety
New Clio does not rest on its passive safety laurels and can also claim a number of solid advantages in terms of handling, road holding and braking, thanks in part to its longer wheelbase and wider track.

All versions include the following standard equipment:
    ESC (Electronic Stability Control)
    Emergency Brake Assist

Driver aids
    Visual and audible seat belt reminders for all passengers are a standard feature of all versions.
    All versions are fitted with cruise control and speed limiter.
    A reversing camera and rear parking sensors enable drivers to be aware of their immediate surroundings.

Designed with passion, built with precision
One of Renault's core strengths has long been the design and manufacture of small cars which combine an affordable price tag with unbeatable quality that lacks for nothing when compared with that of bigger, more expensive rivals.

New Clio will be built in Flins, France, and Bursa, Turkey. These factories deploy identical, high-quality production standards, as does Dieppe, France, where Clio RS will be manufactured.

Design quality pedigree
As well as putting its new models through their paces on the road, Renault runs a comprehensive programme of tests to ensure the longterm durability of every design aspect: seat comfort, seals, suspension, noise, vibration and harshness and so on. These demanding standards go well beyond the norm and even surpass the mandatory regulatory minimum.

For example, Renault tests its vehicles in an electric field charged at 100 Volts/metre when homologation demands only 30 Volts/metre. It also uses a wider frequency band than required.

Another example is New Clio's climate control system which has been designed to deliver optimal performance in extreme temperatures ranging from -30°C to +55°C and in a hygrometric range from five to 95 percent. Naturally enough, the Renault R-Link and Media Nav multimedia systems were only approved after being subjected to demanding radiation and interference tests.

Manufacturing excellence
New Renault Clio's design brief and the requirement to maintain the company's reputation for high standards could have put significant pressure on Renault's manufacturing system, but the challenge was transformed into an opportunity to deliver ground-breaking quality control:
  • Panel gaps reduced by 0.2mm.
  • Elimination of paint impurities (orange peel) by using a superior standard of finish and electro-coated protection techniques.
  • Long-life varnish that is both deeper and thicker, for a better, more durable finish.
  • First use of a red-tinted lacquer (for the Flame Red body colour inspired by the DeZir concept car).
  • The roof is plasma-soldered by robots, a simpler process which ensures even higher quality.
  • The detection at the end of the assembly line of minor faults (class V3) likely to influence perceived quality reduced by a factor of three.

The Renault production Way (spr) was conceived to make the Group's production procedures the very best in the world. The Renault production Way requires designers of product and process, buyers, suppliers, logistics analysts and affiliated industrial plants to reach specific targets and comply with certain principles. There are regulations and operational standards that must be met by every individual who contributes to the design and build of a vehicle.

The SPR's four objectives are to:
  •     make sure that customers get the quality they expect.
  •     bring down global costs.
  •     manufacture the right products at the right time.
  •     respect the workforce and give them responsibilities.

To achieve these goals, the same procedures are employed in the factories at Flins and bursa, just as they are at plants throughout the Renault Group. Objectives include the standardisation and ongoing improvement of work stations, in order to guarantee customer satisfaction in terms of quality, price and delivery times. The training, education and flexibility of the production teams are a key part of the SPR philosophy. In practice, any employee should be capable of occupying three different work stations and each work station should be operable by three different employees.

A passionate response to what the market wants
New Clio has been tailored to meet the demands and requirements of the market. the model's inherent strengths will allow it to meet the challenge it can expect to face in almost 50 countries worldwide.

The B segment: a sales heavyweight
In Europe, where 13.5 million vehicles were sold in 2011, the B segment accounted for nearly 4.2 million vehicles, equivalent to 31 percent of the passenger car market. Within this relatively stable segment, which has accounted for between 30 and 33 percent of the market since 2005, hatchback models represent 75 percent of all sales.

Among these, five-door models dominate the passenger car market in Europe. in France, 94 percent of Clio IIIs sold in 2012 were five-door versions.

Customers from the B-segment and above

Increasingly, B-segment vehicles are becoming the main household car, in other words a car that is expected to do everything. Customers consequently want it to include all the features associated with vehicles in higher segments.

Customer analysis in the B segment shows that 60 percent of them are repeat buyers.

However, 40 percent are newcomers to the segment. They are either buying a car for the first time, or are switching from a lower (A-segment) or higher class (C-segment). Today, the majority are downsizing from the C-segment. this proportion has increased by 37 percent in 10 years. However, fewer customers are stepping up from A-segment vehicles.

Close attention paid to running costs

It is one thing to build a product which meets the market's expectations, but it is still vital to make sure the vehicle is competitive in terms of its running costs. New Clio addresses this demand, too, and the Energy dCi 90 version (83g of CO2/km) stands out as the market leader with regard to TCO (Total Cost of Ownership).

Fuel consumption and tax
New Clio's leadership in fuel consumption and CO2 emissions brings a double advantage in terms of tax and fuel savings.

Renault's new servicing policy sees the introduction of an annual service with alternate oil changes for new vehicles sold from 2012 in Europe (in almost all countries). With New Clio, the standard oil change interval is every 30,000km or two years, while the first service is scheduled for after 30,000km or one year. Outside Europe, servicing schedules are adjusted to suit each country's road network and running conditions.

In the case of the TCe 90 and TCe 120 engines, the timing chain requires no maintenance. For the other engines available for New Clio, the timing belt is changed after six years or 150,000km. The rear brake drums require no servicing before 90,000km.

New Renault Clio is positioned competitively in its class. In particular, progress has been made in terms of access to mechanical components and wear parts, servicing times for repairs, and the way certain components break down into separate elements. As much as possible, New Renault Clio has been designed to ensure that only the minimum number of components must be changed in the event of an accident.
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