Saturday, May 11, 2013

Honda Civic Sedan, 2013

  •  Honda Civic Sedan, 2013

The top-selling and award-winning Honda Civic returns for 2013, with a host of design upgrades and a bevy of new standard features, while still maintaining the efficiency and value that has made the Honda Civic an automotive icon for the past 40 years. The 2013 Honda Civic Sedan receives all-new front and rear exterior styling, along with extensive interior styling upgrades on all models. Retuned steering and suspension sharpen the Civic's handling, while extensive body and chassis upgrades improve the ride comfort and interior quietness.

Every 2013 Civic model is equipped with a suite of class-leading standard features. Standard equipment on every Honda Civic includes Bluetooth® HandsFreeLink®, Bluetooth® Audio, rearview camera, color i-MID display, USB/iPod® connection, Pandora® Interface, an SMS text feature, steering wheel audio controls, exterior temperature gauge and sliding center-console armrest. Even with hundreds of dollars of standard features added, the 2013 Civic arrives with only a modest $160 increase in MSRP across the lineup, with pricing for the exceptionally well-equipped 2013 Civic LX Sedan beginning at $18,165.

New safety technologies built into the 2013 Honda Civic include the application of the next-gen Advanced Compatibility Engineering™ II (ACE™ II) body structure, which includes additional front end structures designed to help increase occupant protection by dispersing crash energy in narrow overlap frontal crashes, and should help the Civic obtain a top rating in the new small-offset crash test conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). Also new are SmartVent™ side airbags, side curtain airbags with a rollover sensor and the availability of Forward Collision Warning (FCW) and Lane Departure Warning (LDW) systems, which make their compact-class debut in the 2013 Honda Civic Hybrid.

Featuring the widest array of powertrain choices available in the segment, the Honda Civic lineup is designed to meet the diverse needs of today's compact-vehicle buyer. The 2013 Honda Civic Sedan and Coupe will be available in LX, EX, EX-L and Si models, with the Civic Hybrid, Civic Natural Gas and Civic HF also available in sedan form. The entry model Civic DX has been discontinued for 2013.

The 2013 Honda Civic lineup includes sedan and coupe models with a conventional gasoline engine and "Si" performance models. Civic also offers a high fuel efficiency "HF," hybrid and exclusive natural gas alternative-fuel sedans.

Heavily revised for the ninth-gen Civic introduction for model year 2012, the Civic's all-aluminum, 140-horsepower, i-VTEC® 1.8-liter 16-valve four-cylinder engine is unchanged for 2013, continuing to provide exceptional responsiveness, refinement, and fuel efficiency. Providing 128 lb-ft of torque at 4300 rpm, the Honda mill is paired with either a 5-speed manual or 5-speed automatic transmission. In the Honda Civic Sedan and Coupe, this powertrain has earned an EPA fuel-economy rating of 28/39/32 mpg city/hwy/combined when equipped with the automatic transmission. In the Civic HF Sedan, those figures climb to 29/41/33 mpg.

Now available in 37 states, the 2013 Honda Civic Natural Gas continues as the only mass produced natural gas sedan available in the U.S. In the Civic Natural Gas, the 1.8-liter engine produces 110 horsepower, and earns an EPA fuel economy rating of 27/38/31 mpg2 (city/hwy/combined). The 2013 Civic Hybrid features a 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine equipped with Honda's Integrated Motor Assist (IMA®) system, which when coupled with its Lithium-Ion battery pack, produces 110 horsepower and 127 lb-ft of torque. Paired to a Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT), the Honda Civic Hybrid earns a city/hwy/combined EPA rating of 44/44/44 mpg. The Civic Sedan and Coupe, Civic Natural Gas and Civic Hybrid models all feature Honda's ECO Assist™ technology, which with the push of the green, dash-mounted "ECON" button, can help drivers operate the vehicle more efficiently.

Along with strong fuel efficiency, the Civic lineup also offers strong performance. The 2013 Civic Si Sedan and Si Coupe models are equipped with an all-aluminum, 201-horsepower, i-VTEC® 2.4-liter DOHC 16-valve engine paired to a 6-speed manual transmission. Even though it provides 170 lb-ft of torque and offers exhilarating performance, the Honda Civic Si has a remarkable 31 mpg EPA highway fuel economy rating.

For 2013, the Honda Civic has received a host of changes that far exceed the typical mid-model refresh. The front and rear styling of the 2013 Honda Civic Sedan has been completely altered for a more youthful and premium feel, including sheet metal changes that include an all-new hood and trunk lid. Up front, a new open-mouth lower bumper with a horizontal chrome accent and a sportier, black honeycomb mesh grille is anchored by new integrated fog lights on EX-L and above trims. The grille is flanked by new clear-lens corner lights to provide a more premium look. The 2013 Civic's more sculpted front end flows into a new taller, more deeply faceted hood.

In back, a new rear bumper design and new rear trunk lid are capped by a clean, horizontal chrome trim piece. The all-new design of the jewel-like taillights now carries into the trunk face, providing a more finished and upscale look. The rear bumper features integrated reflector treatments and a new lower diffuser panel finished with a honeycomb mesh vent. While the expressive exterior styling of the 2013 Honda Civic Coupe remains unchanged, restyled wheels on all models help sharpen the look of the 2013 Civic.

Constructed of 55-pecent high-strength steel, the 2013 Honda Civic's body minimizes weight and maximizes strength for greater rigidity. The 2013 Civic's body has seen a host of changes to the front floor, side sill, A-pillar, upper wheel housing and front bumper extension. This addition of high-strength steel is expected to pay refinement dividends and provide a stiffer structure for the numerous chassis updates for the 2013 Civic. In addition, the Civic's new structure is designed to help it excel in the new Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) small overlap crash test.

Under the skin, the 2013 Honda Civic has had significant alterations aimed at enhancing handling refinement and noise isolation. A reworked Electronic Power Steering (EPS) setup reduces friction and provides a quicker ratio, while stiffer wheels, stiffer front springs and a thicker front stabilizer bar with new Teflon-lined mounting bushings are designed for more fluid suspension action and a flatter, more responsive cornering attitude.

The rear suspension also receives a thicker stabilizer bar, increased spring rate, new Teflon-lined stabilizer-bar bushings, and reworked suspension bushings to increase both bump- and roll-motion stiffness. With its retuned MacPherson strut front and multi-link rear suspension, handling linearity, responsiveness and overall vehicle composure have been increased, while at the same time improving ride quality and the characteristic Honda fun-to-drive feel. For 2013, front brake-rotor diameter on automatic-equipped Civic LX, EX and EX-L Sedans and Coupes jumps 20 mm from 262 to 282 mm for improved stopping performance.

A large range of new noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) countermeasures work together to reduce road, engine and wind noise in the 2013 Civic's interior. This includes a stiffer front subframe, new thicker windshield and front door glass, and additional soundproofing material in the dash, floor, doors, and rear tray to help reduce unwanted road noise, and provide a more serene ride and quieter cabin.

Inside, extensive refinements in design and construction gives the entire 2013 Honda Civic lineup a more premium feel, with an all-new tricot headliner, new soft-touch materials on the instrument panel and upper door treatment, and revised textures and panel junctions throughout the instrument panel and center console. Subtle silver accents in the interior lend a higher-quality look, along with door panel and seat fabric upgrades. Providing a more upscale environment, black carpeting and a trunk lid finisher are now standard on all Civic models. For the first time, Civic is available in both cloth and leather with an all-black interior.

The 2013 Honda Civic provides a host of new class-leading standard features, including Bluetooth® HandsFreeLink®, Bluetooth® Audio, rearview camera, color i-MID display, Pandora® Interface, USB/iPod® interface, SMS text message function, steering wheel audio controls, exterior temperature gauge and a sliding finished center armrest. Available on Honda Civic EX, EX-L, Hybrid and Natural Gas models, the Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System™ with voice recognition now includes a multi-view rearview camera and provides routing and guidance to individual addresses and more than 7-million points of interest within the continental United States. With its 16-GB flash memory system, it offers fast route calculation and includes FM traffic, a subscription-free service that alerts drivers to traffic conditions.

Named a "2012 Top Safety Pick" by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), the Civic returns for 2013 with a re-engineered Advanced Compatibility Engineering™ II (ACE™ II) body structure. The changes that went into the ACE II body structure were designed to help increase the protection provided to vehicle occupants in a frontal collision, including the addition of front end structures to help disperse crash energy in narrow overlap frontal crashes. These changes should also help the Civic obtain top marks in the new Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) small overlap frontal crash test.

Also new for 2013, the Honda Civic features Honda's new SmartVent™ front seat side airbag construction that recently debuted in the 2013 Honda Accord. The new SmartVent™ airbag design helps mitigate the risk of excessive side airbag deployment force, while eliminating the need for the prior Honda Civic's Occupant Position Detection System (OPDS). The elimination of OPDS allows improved heating of the seatback on Civic EX-L models. Additionally, the 2013 Civic is equipped with a side curtain airbag with rollover sensors, nearly two years ahead of regulatory requirements.

A first in the compact segment, the 2013 Honda Civic Hybrid will provide standard Forward Collision Warning (FCW) and Lane Departure Warning (LDW) systems. FCW is designed to detect a possible collision with another vehicle or object ahead and provide visible and audible alerts to the driver. LDW provides visible and audible alerts if the driver begins to drift out of a detected lane without using the turn indicator.

The 2013 Honda Civic's additional safety technologies include standard dual-stage, multiple-threshold front airbags, an anti-lock braking system (ABS), Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA) with traction control, a tire pressure monitoring system, and a pedestrian injury mitigation design in the front of the vehicle.
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Friday, May 10, 2013

Ford Explorer Sport, 2013

  •  Ford Explorer Sport, 2013

The first-ever performance version of the Ford Explorer arrives this year with the highest projected fuel economy among gasoline-engine-powered, high-performance SUVs.

With a twin-turbocharged EcoBoost® V6 engine making at least 350 horsepower and four-wheel drive with a Terrain Management System™, Ford Explorer Sport delivers enhanced on-road dynamics with sporty design cues inside and out.

Power, capability, fuel efficiency
Completely new for 2011, the Ford Explorer has been winning over customers with its improved on-road handling, impressive comfort and convenience technologies, and fuel economy never before delivered by an SUV.

For the 2013 model year, Ford Explorer Sport brings high-performance SUV power and projected fuel economy of up to 16 mpg in city driving and 22 mpg on the highway - anticipating 3 mpg better in the city and 2 mpg on the highway than the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Dodge Durango R/T 5.7-liter Hemi engines. It scores 3 mpg higher in the city and 4 mpg higher on the highway than the Land Rover Range Rover Sport.

The Ford Explorer Sport features a paddle-shifted six-speed SelectShift Automatic™ transmission with a unique 3.16 to 1 final drive ratio to provide the balance of responsive acceleration and economical low-rpm cruising for better fuel efficiency.

The chassis also has been specially reinforced, making Ford Explorer Sport stiffer and improving its handling.

Ford Explorer Sport also brings a solid-mounted electric power-assisted steering (EPAS) rack with a faster ratio, providing more responsiveness to drivers both on-road and off.

Ford's newest SUV comes standard with larger brakes for shorter stopping distances and better performance while towing.

Ford Explorer Sport also has received special terrain management settings for tackling sandy, snowy, rutted mud and hill descent.

Subtle, sporty design elements
Sport builds on Explorer's muscular, sculpted form with subtle cues to differentiate it from other models in the lineup. Available in four exterior colors - Ruby Red Metallic Clearcoat, White Platinum Metallic Tri-Coat, Tuxedo Black Metallic and Ingot Silver Metallic - Ford Explorer Sport has unique 20-inch painted and machined wheels, features blacked-out headlamp and taillamp treatments, black roof rack rails, sideview mirror skull caps and a liftgate appliqué.

The Ford Explorer Sport's special grille is a low-gloss Sterling Gray mesh, with contrasting ebony high-gloss bars. The black front lower fascia features a functional opening for additional cooling. Explorer logotype in billet-like black adds a bold identity statement. Subtle Sport and EcoBoost badges at the rear finish the liftgate.

Inside, the high-end feel continues. Charcoal Black leather-trimmed seating is available with and without contrasting Sienna inserts.

The interior design contrast was inspired by fashion, mirroring two-tones that are currently seen in leather accessories and apparel from design houses Balenciaga and Prada. Stitching is emphasized to lend a handcrafted appearance while highlighting Ford Explorer Sport's sculptured seats.

Ford Explorer Sport also has unique steering wheel stitching, a technical look to instrument and door panel appliqués, unique Sport-logo floor mats and illuminated scuff plates.

Comfort, convenience, connectivity
As the top of the Explorer line, Sport offers a robust array of standard and optional customer-focused technologies that make driving more comfortable, convenient and connected. These:
    4WD with Terrain Management System
    Dual-Zone Electronic Automatic Temperature Control
    10-way power driver's seat with power recline and lumbar
    Six-way power passenger seat with recline and lumbar
    First-row heated seats
    Compass and exterior temperature display
    Rear view camera
    SYNC® with MyFord Touch® driver connect technology
    Sony® Premium Audio System with HD Radio™ and 12 speakers

Ford Explorer Sport can be tailored to individual preferences with the following options as well:
    Active park assist
    Blind Spot Information System (BLIS®) with cross-traffic alert
    Inflatable rear seat belts
    110-volt outlet
    PowerFold mirrors
    Intelligent access with Push-Button Start
    Remote Start
    Adjustable pedals with memory
    Dual-panel moonroof
    Power liftgate
    Class III trailer-towing package
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Thursday, May 9, 2013

Fiat 500e, 2014

  •  Fiat 500e, 2014

Designing city-friendly, environmentally responsible and fun-to-drive small cars is what the FIAT brand and its "Simply More" belief stand for. The all-new 2014 Fiat 500e electrifies the next chapter of the brand's legacy by embodying the FIAT brand's simple, purposeful and fun-to-drive values - through iconic style, engaging dynamics and an environmentally responsible zero-emissions design.

Designed to be a no-compromise electric vehicle (EV), the 2014 Fiat 500e builds on the Cinquecento's successful small-car formula, while adding an all-new battery-electric powertrain that produces 111 horsepower (83 kW), recharges in less than 4 hours with its Level 2 (240 volt) on-board charging module (OBCM) and delivers more than 80 miles of estimated range, with city driving range typically exceeding 100 miles without any tailpipe emissions.

Making sure the all-new 2014 Fiat 500e delivers world-class EV handling and braking performance, engineers designed a new chassis and suspension for the new EV powertrain, while further solidifying the engaging European driving dynamics the FIAT brand and Cinquecento are known for.

The all-new Fiat 500e pushes its iconic Italian design forward with its wind-tunnel-sculpted shape and retro-futuristic dot-matrix styled cues for a cutting-edge look. To achieve a 13 percent improvement in aerodynamics (0.311 coefficient of drag (Cd) compared to the 2013 Fiat 500 Lounge's 0.359 Cd), the Fiat 500e features eight exterior enhancements and more than 140 hours of wind tunnel testing and refinement. The result is a purposeful design that enables this Cinquecento to achieve an additional five miles of range.

The inside, 2014 Fiat 500e fuses retro-futuristic design with unique EV technology elements for an environment comprised of simplicity with innovation. An all-new 7-inch thin-film transistor (TFT) instrument cluster displays full-color picture graphics to illustrate vehicle functions, charge levels and trip summary. In addition, a new TomTom Navigation unit enables the driver to view the vehicle's charge schedule, range, and power-flow gauges, and can even request nearby charging stations with real-time availability. Below its instrument panel bezel, the 2014 Fiat 500e also includes an all-new electronic shifter with easy-to-use push-button transmission mode selection. For added style, the interior environment is available in Nero (black) or exclusive Steam (white), highlighted by Electric Orange to bring even more design character to this Cinquecento.

Keeping passengers of the Fiat 500e connected to vehicle information is an all-new Fiat 500e Smartphone App (compatible with iPhone and Android) that enables real-time vehicle status, manages charging, tracks the driver's energy use, locates the vehicle and nearby charging stations, plans and sends routes to the vehicle and provides text-message alerts.

The all-new 2014 Fiat 500e arrives at FIAT Studios in California during the second quarter of 2013.

With its iconic proportions, wind-tunnel-sculpted Italian curves and graphically enhanced design elements, the all-new 2014 Fiat 500e redefines electric vehicle (EV) styling while adding to the Cinquecento's global reputation of automotive efficiency for more than 55 years. And with the available e-Sport Package, the Fiat 500e adds a more aggressive blacked-out appearance that hints at its athletic character.

"Designers are always anticipating what the future could look like, and for the all-new Fiat 500e, we went back and looked at contemporary design themes that surfaced around the time of the historic Cinquecento," said Roberto Giolito, Head of FIAT Style. "With its dot-matrix gradient patterns, Electrico Arancione accents and aerodynamically enhanced Cinquecento silhouette, the all-new Fiat 500e takes a retro-futuristic approach to match its advanced propulsion and zero-emission powertrain."

Improved aerodynamics via retro-futuristic styling cues harking back to 1960s-era design

The all-new 2014 Fiat 500e takes the city-friendly proportions and iconic Cinquecento cues of the Fiat 500 hatchback model further with purposeful aerodynamic treatment and retro-futuristic styled design cues to highlight its environmentally friendly battery-electric capability.

For designers and engineers of the Fiat 500e, minimizing drag while keeping the iconic styling of the Cinquecento was of the upmost importance. The recognizable Fiat 500 physiognomy - its "whiskers and logo" face with bi-halogen headlamps and lower park and fog lamps - continue the FIAT brand's familiar DNA. Below, a two-piece front fascia features a uniquely sculpted surface for minimal drag, while providing the necessary airflow inlets to cool the 500e's electrical components. With its lower dot-matrix patterned fascia, the all-new Fiat 500e recalls a futuristic theme that was present during the popularity of the original Cinquecento's birth. For added detail, the fascia insert features projector-beam fog lamps and the "500e" logo.

Unique to the Fiat 500e, designers developed wind-tunnel-sculpted front and rear fascias, exterior mirror caps, side sills, and introduced a liftgate mounted aero spoiler extending the vehicle's roofline. All of these elements work to reduce the Fiat 500e's drag coefficient and improve the vehicle's aerodynamic performance. The vertically enhancing side sills also tie in the gradient pattern and "500e" logo from the front fascia. Below, the two-piece rear fascia echos the dot-matrix styled diffuser and "500e" logo featured on the front of this electrified Cinquecento.

A Fiat 500e exclusive wheel design features a premium painted Argento (silver) face with Nero (black) finished aero inserts. Unique 15 x 5.5-inch (front) and 15 x 6.5-inch (rear) wheel fitments feature a flush design for optimal aerodynamics.

More than 140 hours of wind-tunnel sculpting for a 13 percent aero improvement

For the all-new Fiat 500e to achieve a 0.311 coefficient of drag (Cd) (compared to the 2013 Fiat 500 Lounge model's 0.359 Cd), eight exterior refinements were developed in the wind tunnel to enable the 48 count drag reduction. The result of hours of wind-tunnel testing is a design that enables this battery-electric Cinquecento to achieve an additional five miles of range.

The 2014 Fiat 500e's eight functional exterior system improvements:
    Front fascia sealing
    Aerodynamically optimized front fascia design
    Flush profile 15-inch aluminum wheels
    Streamlined exterior mirror caps
    Under vehicle bellypans
    Wind-tunnel-sculpted side sills
    Drag reducing rear fascia design
    Liftgate-mounted aerodynamic spoiler

Three head-turning exterior appearances, including the "high voltage" styled e-Sport Package
Keeping with the FIAT brand's tradition of personalization, the all-new 2014 Fiat 500e offers three exciting exterior appearances:

    Included with the Fiat 500e's Nero interior environment, this Cinquecento features front and rear lower dot-matrix patterned fascia accents painted in Nero, along with body-color spoiler and mirror caps
    Available in Argento, Grigio (gray), Bianco Perla (pearl white) and Nero exterior paint

Bianco Perla
  •     With the Fiat 500e's optional Steam (white) interior environment, this Cinquecento features front and rear lower dot-matrix patterned fascia accents, spoiler and mirror caps painted in tri-coat Bianco Perla paint
  •     Available in Argento, Grigio, Bianco Perla, Nero and exclusive Electrico Arancione Perla (Electric Orange Tri-coat paint)

e-Sport Package
    Offering customers an EV with an aggressive exterior attitude, the 2014 Fiat 500e with e-Sport Package features the first "blacked-out" styled EV in the segment. Paired with the Nero interior environment, this Cinquecento includes front and rear lower dot-matrix patterned fascia accents painted in Nero, headlamp, park lamp and tail lamp surrounds in Nero, uniquely finished cast-aluminum wheels painted Nero with Electrico Arancione Perla accented inserts, Electrico Arancione Perla mirror caps and gradient-style lower bodyside graphic for a high-voltage look
    Available in Argento, Grigio, Bianco Perla and Nero exterior paint

Interior environment styled around simplicity and innovation
Expanding on the no-nonsense design and high attention to detail found on the Fiat 500, the all-new 2014 Fiat 500e features a retro-futuristic interior environment in Steam or Nero with Electric Orange accents and unique EV technology elements for an environment that ties in to its high-tech propulsion system.

Communicating that this battery-electric Cinquecento is fun-to-drive, a Steam or Nero thick-rim steering wheel features a unique Electric Orange leather inner accent. For easier operation, and to keep the driver's eyes on the road ahead, the steering wheel includes cruise, audio and BLUE&ME Handsfree Communication technology controls.

Behind the steering wheel, an all-new 7-inch thin-film transistor (TFT) display provides increased functionality with more attractive and intuitively delivered information of the power gauge, driving range and state of charge. In addition, the new Electronic Vehicle Information Center (EVIC) utilizes its full-color capabilities with the use of picture graphics to illustrate vehicle functions including a trip computer, tire-pressure monitoring and vehicle status messaging system.

Integrating a convenient and portable vehicle navigation solution, the available TomTom navigation pairs with the Fiat 500e's standard BLUE&ME Handsfree Communication technology and features a 4.3-inch touchscreen display mounted on top of the instrument panel. Below its instrument panel bezel, the 2014 Fiat 500e includes an all-new electronic shifter with easy-to-use, push-button transmission mode selection.

The 2014 Fiat 500e also includes leatherette seating in corresponding Steam or Nero that ties in the dot-matrix pattern through a two-layer cloth design with accented Nero or Bianco showing through the gradient. For added style, both Steam- and Nero-colored seats feature an Electric Orange accent on the seat cushion and are stitched together in the high-voltage accent color. Unique to the Steam seats are head restraints and door arm rests in Electric Orange, while a two-tone Bianco/Nero door design adds even more design character to the Fiat 500e.

Thanks to careful analysis of the interior space, designers of the Fiat 500e made an amazingly roomy and capable cabin within its city-friendly size. With built-in storage spaces, including two in the instrument panel, map pockets in the door panels and another below the center console's shifter bezel, this high-tech Cinquecento can quickly and conveniently store mobile devices and travel gear.

With its iconic style, world-class dynamics and environmentally responsible zero-emissions design, the all-new 2014 Fiat 500e builds on the Cinquecento legacy, while offering customers a no-compromise electric vehicle (EV) that embodies the FIAT brand's simple, purposeful and fun-to-drive values.

Keeping EV ownership simple
During the development of the all-new Fiat 500e, designers and engineers ensured that the electrified Cinquecento would not compromise on the brand's core values: simple, purposeful and fun. The result, the best of the Fiat 500's familiar no-nonsense design and engaging dynamics - plus an intelligently integrated approach to electric propulsion and innovative connectivity features.

Loaded with standard technologies and convenience features
The 2014 Fiat 500e takes an "all-in" approach to technology, convenience features and purposeful styling appointments. Standard equipment on the Fiat 500e includes:

Innovative technologies
  •     More than 80 miles of estimated range, with city driving range typically greater than 100 miles
  •     111 horsepower (83 kW) electric-drive motor
  •     Less than 4 hour charge time with Level 2 (240 volt) on-board charging module (OBCM)
  •     24 kWh hour liquid-cooled/heated lithium-ion battery
  •     Power inverter module (PIM) for DC-to-AC and DC-to-DC
  •     Push-button e-shift transmission
  •     Regenerative brake system
  • 15-inch Firestone Firehawk GT low-rolling-resistance tires
  • LED-illuminated state-of-charge indicator visible through windshield
  • 7-inch thin-film transistor (TFT) instrument cluster with Electronic Vehicle Information Center (EVIC)
  • Power gauge with real-time feedback
  • Primary speedometer and trip computer
  • State-of-charge indication
  • Fiat 500e Smartphone App (compatible with iPhone or Android)
  • Vehicle status
  • Manage charging and preconditioning (remote start and charge now)
  • Driver's energy consumption tracking
  • GPS enabled route planning, location of nearby charging stations and ability to send destination to car
  • Text-messaging alerts
  • Includes 3 years of connected services
  • TomTom Navigation with voice activated commands, EV friendly route planning, power meters and battery driving-range indicators

Comfort and convenience
    Premium heated (front) leatherette/cloth seats
    BLUE&ME Handsfree Communication technology with USB and iPod control
    SiriusXM Radio (with one-year subscription)
    Alpine premium audio system with six speakers and 276-watt amplifier
    Automatic climate control
    Leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio and cruise controls
    Power windows, door locks, mirrors and locking charge port door
    Auto-dimming rear-view mirror
    Cargo compartment organizer with covered load floor to accommodate charge cord and tire-inflator kit

Safety and security
    Seven airbags
        Advanced multistage driver and front-passenger
        Front and rear side-curtain
        Driver inflatable knee air bag
        Driver and front-passenger seat-mounted side air bags (pelvic-thorax)
    Bi-halogen headlamps
    Daytime running lamps (DRL)
    Audible pedestrian warning system
    Active head restraints
    ParkSense rear park assist
    Electronic stability control (ESC)

e-Sport Package: an EV with athletic attitude
Adding a menacing look to the 2014 Fiat 500e, the segment's first e-Sport Package rewrites the EV rule book, offering the most fun-to-drive EV with an athletic and aggressive personality.

The e-Sport Package includes blacked-out headlamp, park lamp and tail lamp surrounds in Nero (black), staggered 15-inch aluminum wheels in Nero with Electrico Arancione Perla (Electric Orange Tri-coat paint) accents and bodyside graphic and matching mirror caps.

Rather than compromising the essence of a fun-to-drive icon, the all-new 2014 Fiat 500e was engineered to deliver world-class electric vehicle (EV) handling and braking performance, while further solidifying the engaging European driving dynamics the FIAT brand and Cinquecento are known for.

Upgraded chassis with an emphasis on handling
The all-new 2014 Fiat 500e features a specially engineered suspension tailored for its EV architecture and capable of highly engaging dynamics in an electric vehicle.

The suspension of the Fiat 500e is re-engineered with new increased spring rates and unique front-strut and rear-shock tuning, for optimum ride comfort and body control, fully retaining the fun-to-drive character that the Fiat 500 is already known for. In addition, Fiat 500e's 15 x 5.5-inch (front) and 15 x 6.5-inch (rear) aluminum wheels add stability at high speeds.

The 2014 Fiat 500e features a 16.3:1 steering-gear ratio to enhance responsiveness, maneuverability and performance feel. In addition, this electrified Cinquecento features a uniquely tuned electronic power steering (EPS) calibration for increased steering response and feedback. In addition, the Fiat 500e's EPS system is designed to compensate for temporary road crown and crosswind situations where there is a constant push of the car to one side or another, assisting the driver to not have to drive against such a condition.

Energy-regenerating disc brakes
The all-new Fiat 500e features 2.1-inch (54 mm) diameter single-piston front-brake calipers with larger 11.1-inch (284 mm) (up from 10.1-inch; 257 mm) diameter ventilated rotors for additional braking surface and heat dissipation. The 9.4-inch (240 mm) rear disc-brake system also features single-piston brake calipers.

Taking advantage whenever the driver slows, the Fiat 500e's regenerative braking system converts kinetic energy to electricity, while helping to provide additional range by charging the lithium-ion battery. In addition, the Fiat 500e provides the driver with the traditional "connected" feel of an internal combustion vehicle when coasting. Tying it altogether is the Fiat 500e's regenerative braking controller (RBC) that receives the driver's brake-pedal input and determines the total amount of brake power requested. Depending on input levels, the RBC is able to adjust the level of friction and regenerative braking instantly.

The Fiat 500e features a four-channel electronic stability control (ESC) system that monitors the speed of each wheel individually. The four-channel system allows individual wheel braking for superior control and provides backup braking in the unlikely event that one of the two braking circuits would fail. The anti-lock brake (ABS) software uses a steering wheel angle sensor that allows the system to differentiate between straight-line braking and braking in a turn, resulting in better straight-line braking with minimal yaw.

ESC helps maximize driver control in all conditions by combining both engine torque and brake control to regulate wheel spin at all driving speeds. When the system senses impending wheel slip during acceleration, it signals the throttle control to reduce drive wheel torque. Under extreme situations, such as going from pavement to ice during acceleration, the system will selectively apply the brakes to maintain control. An ESC button on the center stack allows the driver to partially turn off the system.

Other features in the Fiat 500e's ESC system:
    Electronic brake-force distribution (EBD)
    Electronic rollover mitigation (ERM)
    Hill-start Assist (HSA)
    Brake Assist

Fiat 500e provides a quieter interior
With 2014 Fiat 500e's electric powertrain, and redesigned body structure, engineers took the opportunity to develop an all-new noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) package to improve interior quietness.

In addition to the reduction in wind noise gained through the Fiat 500e's eight exterior aero dynamic improvements, this electrified Cinquecento includes 12 product-specific improvements aiding in the vehicle's reduction in interior cabin noise while driving. These NVH improvements:
  •     Additional mastic patches on floor
  •     Additional sound-deadening material in rear quarter body cavity
  •     Additional acoustic pads to wheelhouse liners
  •     New gasket between the mirror flag and door
  •     New mirror flag and B-pillar applique foam seals
  •     Additional 8 mm acoustic pad to rear floor behind rear seats
  •     New antenna with strakes
  •     New carpet mass layer
  •     New noise absorption pads in front doors
  •     New isolated engine torque mount
  •     Improved door glass belt and channel sealing
  •     New acoustic windshield glass
  •     Redesigned body structure adds rigidity and improved weight distribution

A new lower-body structure design provides packaging and protection for the 2014 Fiat 500e's battery, while delivering a 10 percent improvement in bending stiffness.

With extensive use of advanced steels, composites and advanced computer-impact simulations, the Fiat 500e's redesigned architecture delivers world-class torsional stiffness for optimum control of body geometry, while accommodating its powerful 97-cell lithium ion battery. Engineers ensured that the revised underbody's design was minimally intrusive to interior space, while providing a tighter and stiffer feel, with an added sense of confidence and control during higher speed maneuvers.

In addition, the design change from internal combustion to battery-electric enabled the Fiat 500e to repackage its weight for a 57/43 (compared to Fiat 500's 64/36) front-to-rear weight distribution to improve handling performance.
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Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Dodge Avenger Blacktop Edition, 2013

  •  Dodge Avenger Blacktop Edition, 2013

America's most affordable and powerful mid-size sedan, the Dodge Avenger, gets a menacing new look and a distinct set of new features with the Blacktop package, which also offers incredible value with a U.S. MSRP of just $595.

Available in Black, Redline Red 2, Bright White, Tungsten Metallic and Billet Silver Metallic, the 2013 Dodge Avenger Blacktop is based on the 2013 Dodge Avenger SXT model and adds standard 18-inch Gloss Black aluminum wheels with Gloss Black center caps, Gloss Black front grille, dark-tinted headlamp bezels and a body-color rear spoiler.

Additional standard features on the Avenger with the Blacktop package include: a six-speed automatic transmission with Auto Stick that delivers up to 31 mpg, automatic headlamps, projector fog lamps, eight-way power driver seat, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, six speakers, automatic temperature control, body-color heated exterior mirrors, SiriusXM Radio, Electronic Vehicle Information Center (EVIC), four-wheel disc anti-lock (ABS), Electronic Stability Control (ESC), six airbags and much more.

For an added dose of luxury with the customized black appearance, Avenger Blacktop offers a premium leather interior with heated front seats for only $400 MSRP, making Avenger the most affordable mid-size car with leather in the United States.

Available optional equipment includes: the 3.6-liter variable-valve timing Pentastar V-6 engine, which produces a best-in-class 283 horsepower and 260 lb.-ft. of torque while providing impressive V-6 highway fuel economy of 29 miles per gallon (mpg), power sunroof, premium audio system and 6.5-inch touch screen with Navigation.

The 2013 Dodge Avenger offers great value with loads of standard features that customers appreciate and a starting U.S. MSRP of only $18,995. The Dodge Avenger was named an Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) "Top Safety Pick" in 2012, the fourth consecutive year the Avenger has been named a "Top Safety Pick."

An athletic yet refined exterior, a high-quality, well-crafted interior, a spirited driving experience, fuel economy of up to 31 mpg highway and a 5-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty make the 2013 Dodge Avenger the smart buy for sedan buyers, which explains why Avenger has set sales records for six of the past seven months.
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Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Dacia Sandero, 2013

  •  Dacia Sandero, 2013

The new Sandero is a modern compact hatchback with good looks expressing vitality and versatility. The new model continues to bring customers unrivalled equipment for money and in classic Dacia style is strong on cabin space and load volume.

Boot volume of 320 dm3 VDA remains unbeatable given the car's price and compact design. Sandero is no slouch on practicality and versatility either, with a 60/40 split-folding rear bench, which folds down to increase load volume to 1,200 dm3 VDA.

With New Logan, New Sandero and New Sandero Stepway, Dacia styling becomes more assertive and upmarket

Dacia's new design identity emphasises quality and strength. The three restyled models share the same harmonious front end, radiating outwards from the Dacia logo in the grille. The design of the large headlights and grille gives the cars a more expressive face.

In profile, the proportion of body to glazed surfaces underlines the impression of robustness, helped by a sculpted waist line, more emphatic wheelarches and flanks found on each new model.

More appeal inside
The three new models feature a new dark-carbon or two-tone dashboard (according to model and version) home to comprehensive and contemporary-style instrumentation, with chrome-surrounded dials and latest-generation, eminently functional controls.

The air-vent surrounds, steering-wheel logo and gear-stick handle label are chrome-finished (according to trim level). The central fascia is highlighted by a color wheel trim embellisher (according to trim) that matches the door handles and the design strip on the steering wheel.

Aesthetic quality has been enhanced through the clever choice of materials and flusher fit.

Gasoline: TCe 90
For the first time, New Dacia Logan and New Dacia Sandero are available with the TCe 90, a new symbol of the Renault group's powertrain excellence. This exceptional engine combines driving pleasure and comfort with controlled fuel consumption (54.3 mpg) and CO2 emissions (120 g/km) for reduced running costs.

Featuring the latest technology and downsizing techniques, the TCe 90 is a three-cylinder, 898cc turbocharged gasoline engine. With its ultra-low-inertia turbocharger plus variable valve timing, it delivers 66 kW (90 hp) at 5,250 rpm and generates 135 Nm from low engine speeds (90% from 1,650 rpm), making it a lively and responsive performer with smooth acceleration. It brings drivers a best-in-class balance between driving performance and fuel consumption.

Gasoline: 1.2 16v 75 (Euro 5)
This 1,149cc engine, developing 55 kW (75 hp), is an impressive all-rounder, equally at ease in the city or out on the open road. Fuel consumption is an impressive 47.8 mpg, for CO2 emissions of 137 g/km on New Dacia Logan and New Dacia Sandero. The 1.2 16V 75 engine is also available in an LPG version for lower running costs and just 125g/km of CO2 (in course of homologation, unavailable in UK).

Diesel: dCi 75 and 90 (Euro 5)
Renowned for its driving pleasure, performance reliability, and environmental respect, the 1.5 dCi is available in 55 kW (75 hp) and 66 kW (90 hp) versions. With a torque increase of 20 Nm - 200 Nm of torque at 1,750 rpm for the 75 hp unit and 220 Nm at 1,750 rpm for the 90 hp unit -the 1.5 dCi engine is responsive from even the lowest engine speeds. This performance comes hand in hand with some of the lowest fuel consumption figures in the segment, at 74.3 mpg, for CO2 emissions of 99 g/km for New Logan and Sandero, over a combined cycle representing a decrease of 5 g. Both engines naturally carry the Dacia eco2 signature.

New Dacia Sandero Stepway: TCe 90 and dCi 90
Equipped with the TCe 90, the latest example of the Group's mechanical expertise, New Sandero Stepway consumes 52.3 mpg for CO2 emissions of 125 g/km.

The dCi 90 version bears the Dacia eco² signature in recognition of its low consumption (68.9 mpg) and emission (105 g/km) levels over a combined cycle.

New Logan, Sandero and Sandero Stepway are available with the Dacia Plug&Radio multimedia solution. Plug&Radio consists of a wide screen and an MP3-compatible CD player, plus Bluetooth® technology, fascia jack and USB sockets, and steering wheel-mounted controls. With Bluetooth® technology drivers can make hands-free calls, with synchronised contacts book and call history, and listen to their favourite tunes by audio streaming through the car's speakers.

MEDIA NAV multimedia system
After debuting on Dacia Lodgy and Dokker, MEDIA NAV is available on all three new models. The simple and user-friendly system, fitted seamlessly in the central fascia, comprises in-car navigation, a radio, Bluetooth® hands-free connectivity and audio streaming, all controlled via a 7-inch (18-cm) touch screen. Navigating the system is easy, via the Menu page. Occupants can also hook up their nomad devices via the USB and jack sockets, mounted on the central fascia for enhanced access and ergonomics, and play them using the touch controls on the screen or the buttons on the steering wheel.

The intuitive touch screen features 2D and "Birdview" (3D) graphics. Customers can update and add mapping content using the USB socket and Naviextra website.

Speed limiter/cruise control and rear parking sensors

A cruise control system - new to the Dacia range - will be available (depending on the version) on New Logan and Sandero, alongside the speed limiter. Rear parking sensors are now available depending on trim level.

Passive safety
For maximum passenger protection, New Dacia Logan, Sandero and Sandero Stepway benefit from all the safety expertise of Renault's engineers. Seatbelts are equipped with calibrated load limiters for thorax protection in the event of impact. The three models also feature Isofix anchorage points in the two rear lateral seats for easy and 100% safe installation of child seats. Every trim level is fitted as standard with front and side driver and passenger airbags and ESC.

Wide range of accessories
For extra personalisation, Dacia proposes a broad range of accessories for everyday use including side mouldings, floor mats, headrest hangers and boot nets. Weekend getaways and holidays have never been easier thanks to a roof box, ski rack, towing hook, bike rack and portable coolbox. Customers can also customise their Dacia using decal strips, exclusive wheel rims and fog light surrounds.

Roominess and load capacity from the segment above
The interior and exterior dimensions of the three new models are as generous as ever, worthy of the segment above. Rear elbow room in New Sandero is 1436 mm, giving enough room to seat three adults comfortably or install three child seats.

Boot volume, as high as 510 dm3 VDA for New Logan (320 dm3 VDA for Sandero), remains unbeatable given the price and the compact exterior dimensions of the vehicle. Practicality and versatility also remain strong points, thanks to the 60/40 split-folding rear bench.

The cabin has been enhanced to bring occupants more storage possibilities, notably with the addition of a central cubby box. The storage spaces in the front and rear doors are large enough to house a 1.5-litre and 0.5-litre bottle respectively.

Driving comfort and efficiency
As all the models in the Dacia range, New Logan, Sandero and Sandero Stepway have excellent ground clearance enabling them to take on all kinds of road conditions. They also feature robust underbody protection for impressive performance on unpaved tracks.

Acoustic comfort has also been improved through additional soundproofing material in the engine compartment and controlled road noise.

Dacia, a reliable brand that perfectly meets customer needs
Dacia customers have simple and well-targeted needs. They are looking for generous, simple and reliable vehicles that are smart and affordable. Dacia's is a practical offering that responds perfectly to the expectations of its customers.

Marketing an increasingly wide range of vehicles (Logan, Logan MCV, Sandero Stepway, Duster, Lodgy, Dokker, Dokker Van), Dacia is posting remarkable quality results. In the latest 2012 results of ADAC, the benchmark German organisation, the reliability of Dacia vehicles has improved continuously over the last three years and Sandero is number four in its category. In February, the brand ranked number-one on reliability in a survey carried out with 30,000 customers by consumer organisations in Belgium, France, Spain, Italy and Portugal.

Dacia builds durably reliable cars and is winning the trust of its customers
Dacia vehicles, like Renault ones, are tested in the most extreme conditions. In addition to conventional bench tests, the Renault group puts its vehicles through demanding tests in real-world conditions to confirm their durability. Logan, for example, was tested over 1.9 million kilometres. Dacia cars are designed from the outset to be sold internationally, and notably in emerging markets. They are developed according to demanding specifications given the diversity of road and weather conditions in such countries.

All Dacia models are covered by a 3 year/60,000 miles manufacturer warranty, with service at all dealerships in the network and top-level repair expertise with manufacturer parts. The warranty is targeted at winning new customers, raising awareness of the brand, and building a relationship of trust with customers.

Dacia benefits from the quality expertise of Renault, which has become a leading carmaker on reliability, largely the result of a global group quality policy launched in 2003.

Dacia relies on Renault group and Alliance know-how in standards and processes

New Logan, Sandero and Sandero Stepway will be produced at the Pitesti plant in Romania and the SOMACA plant in Casablanca, Morocco for the regional market (including Morocco and Tunisia). Starting in the second-half of 2013, New Sandero will also be produced at the Tangier plant in Morocco.
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Monday, May 6, 2013

Chevrolet Impala, 2014

  • Chevrolet Impala, 2014

Chevrolet completes the transformation of its North American passenger car lineup with the introduction of the all-new 2014 Chevrolet Impala. The redesigned flagship sedan builds on the strong heritage of the Impala nameplate by offering expressive style, a more-refined interior, easy-to-use technology, and what is expected to be an exhilarating driving experience.

The all-new Chevy Impala goes on sale in early 2013 as the 10th generation of one of the industry's most enduring - and popular - nameplates. Impala was America's best-selling full-size sedan in 2011, with sales of more than 171,000, which also made it one of the 10 best-selling cars overall in the United States, along with Chevrolet Malibu and Cruze.

Designed on an award-winning global platform, the 2014 Chevrolet Impala introduces new levels of comfort, refinement and technology. Highlights:
  •     All-new exterior design that represents the next evolution of Chevrolet's design vocabulary. It features a sleek proportion, sculpted body sides, standard 18-inch wheels and projector-beam headlamps, with HID headlamps and LED daytime running lamps standard on LTZ models
  •     A range of three direct-injected engines, including a 3.6L V-6, new 2.5L four-cylinder and a 2.4L four-cylinder with eAssist, that deliver enhanced performance and efficiency
  •     All-new interior with flowing design and integrated center stack that incorporates an available eight-inch touch screen display with available Chevrolet MyLink
  •     Chevrolet MyLink, which includes Bluetooth audio streaming and available navigation among many other features, is controlled via a touch screen on the eight-inch display
  •     Quieter environment with a greater emphasis on comfort - including active noise cancellation with four-cylinder powertrains
  •     360 degrees of active safety features with 10 standard air bags and OnStar, along with available features including full-speed-range adaptive cruise control, collision mitigation braking, forward collision alert, lane departure warning, side blind zone alert, rear cross traffic alert, rear camera and rear-park assist.

Design details

The 2014 Impala brings a new aesthetic to Impala that honors the cues that have helped distinguish the classic nameplate for decades.

The Chevrolet Impala's long, low proportion has a wind-swept profile that suggests motion, while the range of 18-, 19- and 20-inch wheels is tailored to the body to provide that "just right" stance. At the front, low-profile projector-beam headlamps - or HID headlamps and LED daytime running lamps on LTZ - sweep around the corners and frame a wide grille, while a power dome hood conveys performance. The LTZ's LED daytime running lamps provide a contemporary visual statement, along with function.

Sculpted coves in the body sides add to the Impala's design drama, with a signature cue in the rear fenders that acknowledges classic Impala designs. The long greenhouse area enhances the sleek look of the car while maintaining excellent visibility.

The 2014 Impala builds on Chevrolet's signature dual-cockpit interior with greater attention to detail and upscale features - seen in everything from the wraparound flow of the instrument panel into the door panels and the available ambient lighting, to the soft feel of the materials and the premium appearance of the seats' stitching.

The instrument panel integrates a new instrument cluster with a standard 4.2-inch color display with reconfigurable features for the driver information center. The eight-inch touch screen with concealed storage behind it is matched with the available Chevrolet MyLink system.

Comfort and refinement
The 2014 Chevrolet Impala's comfort and refinement are rooted in a stronger body structure, designed to foster a quieter passenger environment and a greater overall feeling of quality. The stiffer architecture also enabled engineers to tune the ride and handling more precisely, for a greater feeling of control and comfort. A comprehensive package of sound-absorbing, sound-suppressing and even active noise cancellation (on four-cylinder models) contributes to the 2014 Impala being Chevrolet's quietest full-size sedan ever.

Premium materials throughout the interior and details such as high-quality fabric, Ultrasuede and perforated leather appointments, complement the quiet environment and give the Chevrolet Impala a substantive look and feel. The seats are bolstered for greater support, and the seat cushions are designed to deliver a firm, premium feel that is just as comfortable on a 500-mile drive as on a five-minute excursion. The rear-seat head restraints fold to improve rear visibility when driving without rear passengers.

Safety technology
The 2014 Impala offers a comprehensive suite of standard and available safety features. It employs advanced technologies - including radar - to help avoid crashes. Visual and audible alerts help drivers identify potential crash situations and even intervene when a crash threat appears more imminent.

The available safety features and benefits include firsts for Chevrolet and Impala:
  •     Full-speed-range adaptive cruise control - Using radar technology, this feature senses traffic in front of the Impala to adjust the vehicle speed, including stopping the vehicle in heavy traffic and accelerating again. It is the first application in a Chevrolet.
  •     Collision mitigation braking - Another Chevy first: Radar technology detects a possible crash threat and alerts the driver. If the driver does not appear to react quickly enough or doesn't react at all, this feature intervenes and applies the brakes in an effort to avoid the crash.
  •     Forward collision alert - Camera technology detects a possible crash threat and alerts the driver, giving him or her time to stop and/or change course.
  •     Lane departure warning - A camera-based lane detection system that warns the driver of impending lane changes. The camera, mounted near the inside rearview mirror, identifies traffic lane markings and provides audible alerts.
  •     Side blind zone alert - Using radar sensors on both sides of the vehicle, the system "looks" for other vehicles in the blind zone areas of the Impala and indicates their presence with LED-lit symbols in the outside mirrors.
  •     Rear cross traffic alert - Based on the radar sensors of side blind zone alert, it warns the driver of vehicles in traffic when backing out of a parking spot - including angled parking. Visual and audible alerts are triggered if moving vehicles are detected.

These advanced crash-avoidance technologies complement the Chevy Impala's other safety features - including 10 standard air bags and OnStar.

Performance and driving experience
Chevrolet Impala's three powertrains all feature fuel-saving direct injection and lightweight components.

    Impala's Ecotec 2.4L engine works with the eAssist system to provide electrical assist in certain conditions to help save fuel. It is estimated at 182 horsepower (134 kW) and is expected to achieve 35 mpg on the highway.
    The Ecotec 2.5L is part of a new family of four-cylinder engines developed with increased efficiency and greater refinement. It is estimated at195 horsepower (145 kW).
    Output for the 3.6L V-6 is estimated at 303 horsepower (226 kW).

All of Impala's engines are matched with six-speed automatic transmissions.

The powertrains are the force behind Chevrolet Impala's responsive driving experience, which is tuned for a spirited, yet comfortable performance. A MacPherson-strut front suspension and four-link rear suspension underpin the Impala, with an isolated front cradle and hydraulic ride bushing that help deliver a smoother, quieter ride. All models feature an electric variable-assist steering system that helps save fuel by drawing energy only when the steering wheel is turned.

The 2014 Impala will be offered in LS, LT and LTZ models, with assembly at GM's Detroit-Hamtramck, Mich., and Oshawa, Ontario facilities.
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