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Automotive news

LOTUS LAUNCHES THE NEW EXIGE SPORT 410

With a stunning combination of raw speed and real-world ability, the Lotus Exige Sport 410 joins a line-up like no other to complete the Exige family of peerless sports cars.

Starting with the revised Exige Sport 350, the comprehensive Exige range now includes the new Exige Sport 410 and culminates with the extreme Exige Cup 430: each at a distinct price point, performance level and degree of motorsport focus.

Developed directly from the track focused Exige Cup 430, the Exige Sport 410 is designed to be the ultimate road drive, unrivalled in its class.

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This latest addition to the Exige range packs the advanced chassis, suspension and powertrain set-up from its more powerful stablemate, the track focused Exige Cup 430, with a recalibrated engine producing 410 hp (416 PS) at 7,000 rpm and 420 Nm (310 lbft) on tap from 3,000 rpm to 7000 rpm. The high-performance 3.5-litre, supercharged and charge cooled V6 engine combined with a dry weight of just 1,054 kg (lightest possible dry) delivers a class-leading power to weight ratio of 389 hp / tonne, and makes the Exige Sport 410 the lightest V6 Exige ever.

Capable of 0-60 mph in just 3.3 seconds, it records fierce in-gear acceleration before reaching a top speed of 180 mph / 290 km/h (Coupe configuration) – equal to the range-topping Exige Cup 430.

The Exige Sport 410 has been developed to generate 150 kg of downforce, sharing design cues from the Exige Cup 430, adopting a visually arresting revised lightweight front clam panel incorporating wider grilles and carbon fibre air curtains and front splitter.

As with all Lotus cars, the Exige Sport 410 has outstanding handling and lightweight agility engineered into its very DNA. Conveying an extraordinary level of tactility and precision, it’s developed to perform at its very best with maximum enjoyment and driver feedback on the road.

Jean-Marc Gales, CEO, Group Lotus plc said, “With every new Lotus we look to move the bar higher and apply technology and development ideas drawn from top-of-the-range models. Our agility as a company means that the lessons learnt today can quickly be incorporated into the cars of tomorrow and the Exige Sport 410 is a perfect example of this. We have taken the Exige Cup 430, the ultimate track-centric Exige, and developed it into the perfect road orientated sports car, ensuring that we stay ahead of rivals when it comes to cars that deliver a truly engaging analogue driving experience.”

Completing the update to the entire Exige range, the new front clam design also transitions across to the Exige Sport 350, giving a visual refresh to the entry-level model in the Exige line-up.

Both the Exige Sport 410 and Exige Sport 350 are available in Coupe and Roadster configurations, with the Roadster having a lightweight black removable soft-top which can be easily stowed within the car for open-top driving. The Roadster configuration is not available for the Exige Cup 430.

The Exige Sport 410 – forged through development

Reflecting its Sport nomenclature, the new Exige Sport 410 treads the fine balance of cars that retain their focus on road driving yet remain supremely responsive and agile. Whilst Lotus’ Cup variants are developed with circuit driving at heart, the Sport models are tuned to provide the perfect balance of performance, agility and power delivery for the road.

Working from Lotus’ standpoint as the leader in lightweight design, every gram has been justified, from the standard lightweight carbon front splitter and access panel at the front to the carbon side pods, tailgate and wing at the rear.

Distinctive in its appearance, thanks to wider aperture grilles in the new front clam panel, the Exige Sport 410’s revised aero configuration provides total downforce of 150 kg (60 kg at the front and 90 kg at the rear); developed through extensive CFD modelling and wind tunnel testing in order to preserve the car’s handling balance and high-speed stability.

The front splitter helps separate and speed airflow under the car, and the inclusion of air curtain elements into the front clam panel efficiently moves air through to the front wheel cavities to help reduce turbulence and drag created by the front wheels. In addition, the enlarged front clam panel openings, with wider radiator apertures, aid cooling. At the rear, the extended Aluminium diffuser, combined with the new high-mounted wing all contribute to the Exige Sport 410’s enhanced downforce.

The Exige Sport 410 uses the Exige Cup 430’s 3.5-litre supercharged V6 engine with supercharger and water-to-air charge cooler, calibrated to generate 410 hp (416 PS) at 7,000 rpm and 420 Nm (310 lbft) of torque from 3,000 rpm to 7,000 rpm. The latest addition to the range also employs the oil cooler configuration and larger clutch from the Exige Cup 430, perfectly matched to the close-ratio, six-speed manual transmission with exposed-gear-change linkage.

Befitting an industry benchmark, the Exige Sport 410 takes the chassis, suspension and dampers from the Exige Cup 430, re-tuning the three-way adjustable Nitron dampers for a road bias and to suit the car’s revised aerodynamic set-up. These can be customised to the driver’s precise requirements (rebound and low and high-speed compression) along with the Eibach adjustable front and rear anti-roll bars, fitted as standard, which complete the car’s class-leading chassis set-up.

The Exige Sport 410 is fitted with Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres (285/30 ZR18 rear and 215/45 ZR17 front), 20 mm wider at the rear deliver improved traction and work in harmony with the car’s ultra-lightweight forged alloy wheels, which are available in either black or silver. Braking is courtesy of AP Racing, with forged, four-piston calipers and performance two-piece J-hook brake discs. With a higher thermal capacity and improved bite, these discs have better debris clearance and impart consistent pedal feel with greater stopping power.

Performance options for the Exige Sport 410 include a full exhaust system in titanium, removing 10 kg from beyond the rear axle, and a number of high-gloss, visible weave carbon fibre components including instrument binnacle, sill covers, barge boards and roof. A host of motorsport-centric options are also available including electrical cut-off and fire extinguisher controls, airbag deletion, a non-airbag steering wheel, 4-point harnesses and a dealer fit FIA compliant roll cage.

Centre of attention in the cabin is Lotus’ acclaimed open-gate manual gearshift design giving quick and precise changes. The fine detailing continues with an Alcantara® steering wheel and Lotus’ own carbon fibre sports seats trimmed with either a combination of Alcantara® and leather or optional full leather, both featuring contrast stitching.

The optional Interior Colour Pack (in a choice of four colours) provides contrasting surrounds to the transmission console, HVAC surround, carbon seat eyelets and electric window bezels. As standard, the centre console and dashboard are trimmed in Alcantara® with the door cards, a combination of Alcantara® and leather. Air conditioning and an integrated entertainment system including iPod® connectivity and Bluetooth® functionality can also be specified.

Lotus Exclusive

The new Exige Sport 410 can be personalised through the popular Lotus Exclusive programme. Combining traditional British craftsmanship with modern design, the service inspires customers to spend time tailoring the character of their Lotus with a comprehensive array of options.

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Events Coverage Motorshows

Geneva Motor Show 2018 That’s a Wrap

The 88th International Motor Show closed its door on Sunday night 18th of March after hosting more than 660,000 visitors. The media coverage of more than 10,680 media representatives were present during the two press days confirmed an exceptional position of the Geneva Motor Show as a global communication platform.

“We are very satisfied with this result in view of the unattractive economic climate and the media and political atmosphere that is often hostile to cars” commented Maurice Turrettini, President of the Geneva Motor Show.

Prior to this the Volvo XC40 was awarded the Car of the Year 2018 prize by a jury of professional journalists.

The throngs of visitors to the red-carpeted halls of the Geneva International Motor Show were unanimous in their view: the relocation of certain stands (notably Aston Martin, Jaguar and Land rover) had contributed to better circulation and a more comfortable environment for their visit.

In a nutshell, Geneva Motor Show had 180 exhibitors, more than 110 World and European Premiers, 70 press conferences, 900 models and more. Among these models, visitors got the chance to discover numerous powerful “supercars” based on electric propulsion (Techrules, Polestar, Lvchi), more accessible models plus all of the energy efficient vehicles in the show, the service station of tomorrow which allows one to fill their vehicle with hydrogen, cars that can fly (Pal-V, Italdesign), and the “Back to the Future” exhibition containing the concept cars presented at the Geneva International Motor Show over the last dozens of years which were fascinating to see again in today’s light!

The 89th International Motor Show will be held from March 7 to 17, 2019.

ENJOY All the Geneva Motor Show 2018 Videos on the links below:

Geneva Motor Show 2018 Videos Part I

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Automotive news

All-New 2018 Expedition Arrives in Middle East Ford Dealerships

The new-generation 2018 Ford Expedition powers into Ford dealerships across the Middle East this month, setting the benchmark yet again for the full-size SUV segment. The much-awaited model redefines its category with its all-new design inside and out, its unique smart technologies, best in class power and fuel economy, and more expected towing capability than any other full-sized SUV. The new generation 2018 Ford Expedition is the smartest, most capable and most adaptable Expedition ever.

Crystal Worthem, marketing director, Ford Middle East and Africa, said: “The all-new Expedition represents the very latest thinking in SUV design and capability, and has given our teams an ideal opportunity to incorporate the most up to date smart features for our owners to enjoy.

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“Ford prides itself in the unmatched legacy and heritage it enjoys across its sports utility vehicle lines,” Worthem continued. “We set the benchmark and in fact established the SUV category altogether nearly three decades ago, with Explorer, which today stands as America’s best-selling mid-size SUV for over 25 years, and the Expedition full-size SUV which created the full-size SUV category back in the 90s, not to mention the legendary Bronco. Today, the Ford utility lineup expands across five nameplates, from the very compact EcoSport to the large-size Expedition, all of which feature refreshed designs. And with the addition of the all-new Expedition, Ford now offers the freshest SUV range available on the market this year.”

Smartest Expedition ever
The all-new Expedition offers more driver-assist technologies than any other full-size SUV. In addition, an all-new high-strength, aluminium-alloy body and redesigned high-strength steel frame form the foundation for Expedition’s rugged off-road and strong towing capabilities.

Thanks to the use of advanced materials, the all-new Expedition saves up to 136 kg, and the team reinvested that weight savings everywhere it counts to give customers more technology and convenience features than ever before.

More than 40 features and driver-assist technologies new to Expedition help make the journey as enjoyable as the destination. These include class-exclusive enhanced active park assist to easily pull in and out of parking spots, as well as available 360-degree camera technology to help customers see more around their Expedition for easier parking.

On the road, Expedition’s lane-keeping aid is designed to reduce unintentional drifting of the vehicle outside its intended lane, while adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go allows drivers to set a cruising speed, using radar and camera technology to monitor traffic to maintain a set distance between vehicles.

Its collision avoidance detection system helps drivers avoid other vehicles or pedestrians, while available Blind Spot Information System helps monitor blind spots outside the driver’s immediate view. In addition, Expedition offers available new connectivity technologies and convenience features, including:

Wireless charging: Expedition is Ford’s first vehicle to feature this system, which allows customers to place compatible mobile devices on an integrated charging pad conveniently located in the front centre console
• Dual-headrest rear seat entertainment system provides a next-generation video experience that allows passengers to view their media on either of two video screens or hand-held devices

SYNC® 3, with both Apple CarPlay™ and Android Auto™ capability, allows drivers to stay connected on the move. And with the new Expediton, SYNC® 3 debuts its off-road maps for the Middle East

Power for passengers in every row, with four 12-volt power points, six USB chargers and a 220-volt power outlet that lets passengers stay charged and connected
• 12-speaker B&O PLAY premium audio system perfected by acoustic engineers for a sound experience even audiophiles will appreciate

Advanced cargo manager with an adjustable shelf behind the third row lets owners create a storage space customised to whatever they’re hauling; even when parked on a hill, cargo won’t roll out the back of Expedition when the liftgate is opened

Panoramic Vista Roof spans two rows, a feature not offered by any competitor


Most capable Expedition ever

Powered by a 3.5-litre EcoBoost® engine with standard Auto Start-Stop plus a class exclusive new 10-speed automatic transmission, the all-new Expedition offers best-in-class fuel economy and power, with up to 400 horsepower and 610Nm torque available. A newly-available electronic limited-slip differential on models with Intelligent 4WD enables improved off-road capability by sending power where it’s needed.

The all-new Ford Expedition also offers the best towing capability of any full-size SUV, together with features such as Pro Trailer Backup Assist, which makes backing up a trailer as easy as turning a knob. Plus, an available hands-free liftgate makes loading cargo easy.


Most adaptable Expedition ever

The all-new Expedition has a roomy, flexible interior. With seating for up to eight people and their gear, this full-size SUV makes modern family adventures more comfortable during short and long trips alike.

The all-new Expedition is the first full-size utility to feature a sliding second-row seat with tip-and-slide functionality, providing easy access to the third row without the need to first remove a child safety seat. Once in the third row, even adults will appreciate more legroom and reclining seats.

Expedition’s second- and third-row seats can be quickly folded flat with the push of a button to open up a cargo area wide enough to handle 4×8-foot sheets of plywood and other gear, depending on cargo weight and load distribution, even with the liftgate closed.

Even the drive is more adaptable, with Expedition’s all-new Terrain Management System™ that lets customers choose between drive modes for optimal vehicle handling in different conditions. This includes normal for around-town driving, sport for more spirited trips, tow/haul for improved towing and hauling performance, eco for enhanced fuel economy, grass/gravel/snow for loose terrain, sand for low traction situations, and mud/rut for uneven surfaces.

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Events Coverage Feature Coverage Videos

Dub Drive returns: Over 250 Volkswagen cars take over the streets of Dubai

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→  Over 800 people converged from across the region for the largest ever regional gathering of Volkswagen fans

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Dub Drive GCC 2018, the largest gathering of Volkswagen owners and fans in the region, welcomed over 800 visitors at the Dubai Autodrome on Friday 9 March. In its second year, the event hosted by Volkswagen Middle East saw 268 car owners from Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Kuwait, Lebanon and the United Arab Emirates take over the streets of Dubai in the largest convoy, ahead of enjoying a festival of live entertainment, food and track racing.

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Following the success of Dub Drive 2017, regional participants drove thousands of kilometres from their home countries to take part in the event. This year, the event was open to the general public, allowing car enthusiasts to explore a range of classic, limited edition and modified Volkswagen cars while enjoying the family friendly entertainment on offer.

“Dub Drive was introduced in 2017 to highlight our dedication to our fans in the region. This year’s event has surpassed our expectations and we could not have created this without the unity and commitment of the seven different Club’s from across the GCC, coming together as one big family. The energy of the regional Volkswagen community and the passion that owners and fans have for the brand is overwhelming and pushes us to better serve our customers through creating these unique brand experiences,” commented Andrew Savvas, Brand Director, Volkswagen Middle East.

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The 268 car convoy was supported by Emirate Motorsport Federation, RTA, Dubai Police and Civil Defence, creating a network of clear routes for the ultimate Volkswagen fans and ensuring a seamless convoy drive experience through the centre of Dubai.

Dubai welcomed organisers from the world’s biggest Volkswagen clubs, as well as key global Volkswagen personnel including Jost Capito, Managing Director of Volkswagen R GmbH who attended the event with the intention of connecting fans worldwide.

Dub Drive has taken inspiration from an old tradition, Wöerthersee Club Treffen, which is the largest Volkswagen GTI event in the world. The festival started off over 36 years ago in a small village at lake Wöerthersee in Austria by a few Volkswagen fans meeting up, showcasing their cars and exchanging stories. Since then, the event has grown into a three-week-long festival attended by hundreds of thousands of Volkswagen fans from all over Europe.

This year’s Dub Drive Car of the Year Award went to Sameh Helal, from Wolfswagen AUH Club who will now be going to Wöerthersee later this year as his winning prize to continue the experience.

Twice as big as last year Dub Drive 2018 gained the support of key sponsors, Pirelli, Castrol and Volkswagen Accessories.

Carlos Milani, Managing Director Pirelli, Middle East and India said: “As a leader in the premium tyre sector with more than a century of design and manufacturing excellence, this partnership is a natural fit for Pirelli, given Volkswagen’s history and heritage.”

It was great to see so many car enthusiasts in one place doing what they love and the captivating event gave us the perfect platform to engage with this knowledgeable community.”

ENJOY THE VIDEO BELOW:

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Automotive news In the News

Nissan’s women drivers campaign highlighted at Dubai Lynx

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Nissan participated today in Dubai Lynx, the international festival of creativity, where the automaker shared its #SheDrives campaign that engaged with Saudi women following the decision to grant licenses.

Nissan was the first automotive brand to react to the Royal Decree. The topic was addressed by Nissan through different content until January 28, when an emotionally engaging and experiential video was posted on Nissan’s digital platforms that put Saudi women behind the wheel as they attend their first driving lesson. Each woman in the video touched upon how they still faced some subtle degree of resistance from their direct male relatives around the topic. The women then proceed to their lesson, but with surprise driving instructors: Their proud husbands, fathers and brothers hopped in the passenger seats to give the women their first-ever driving lesson, resulting in an inspirational three-minute video.

Hussein M. Dajani, Nissan’s General Manager for Digital and Customer Experience in Africa, the Middle East, Turkey and India, spoke at the prestigious event, where he discussed the analysis and approach behind the campaign and outlined the milestones that have paved the way for Saudi women, including universal suffrage in 2015. However, throughout this momentum of increasing social and political transformation, the communications and marketing industry has been slow to take bold steps towards engaging Saudi women through more meaningful and direct methods, Dajani noted.

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“A series of events have caused a societal shift in the role Saudi women play over the years. This shift has been further accelerated with Saudi Vision 2030 leading to higher women employment rates and recently lifting the ban on women driving effective June 2018. For years, brands have been struggling with the polarity found between existing mindsets in the Kingdom, leaving marketers and brand owners alike often opting for ‘safe routes’ when communicating with Saudi women,” Dajani said. “It is time for brands to rethink their communications approach in the Saudi market. Our #SheDrives campaign illustrates how brands can play an impactful role in the lives of Saudi women.”

Given the interest today in women’s rights across the world, the video was timely and meaningful far beyond Saudi Arabia’s borders, and for that reason all markets in which Nissan operates drove the story on their channels. Content was provided in Arabic, English, French, Spanish and Japanese.

ENJOY THE VIDEO BELOW:

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Automotive news

Nissan IMx KURO concept vehicle debuts at Geneva Motor Show

The Nissan IMx KURO was unveiled at the Geneva International Motor Show, marking the European debut of the IMx electric crossover concept vehicle.

Kuro, which means black in Japanese, comes to life on the IMx, which was first revealed at the Tokyo Motor Show in October 2017, with new look black trim and wheels, an updated grille and a new dark gray body color.

The Nissan IMx KURO provides a glimpse into the future of Nissan Intelligent Mobility, the company’s vision for changing how cars are powered, driven and integrated into society. The innovative concept vehicle is designed to strengthen the link between car and driver as a close, reliable partner that delivers a safer, more convenient and more exciting drive.

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Upgrades to the Nissan IMx KURO also include the integration of Nissan’s pioneering Brain-to-Vehicle (B2V) technology. B2V interprets signals from the driver’s brain to assist with driving and to help the vehicle’s autonomous and manual systems learn from the driver.

“The IMx KURO zero-emission crossover concept vehicle embodies the future of Nissan Intelligent Mobility,” said Jose Munoz, Nissan’s chief performance officer. “Nissan Intelligent Mobility is Nissan’s commitment to changing the way people and cars communicate, as well as how cars interact with society in the near future and beyond.”

Making travel more enjoyable: Nissan Intelligent Driving

At the core of the Nissan IMx KURO’s technological features is a future version of ProPILOT that offers fully autonomous operation. When ProPILOT drive mode is selected, the system stows the steering wheel inside the dashboard and reclines all seats, giving the driver more space and allowing the vehicle’s occupants to relax and enjoy their commute. When Manual drive mode is selected, the vehicle returns the steering wheel and seats to their original position, seamlessly transferring control back to the driver.

The B2V technology featured in the Nissan IMx KURO promises to speed up reaction times for drivers and will lead to cars that keep adapting to make driving more enjoyable. This breakthrough from Nissan is the result of research into using brain decoding technology to predict a driver’s actions and detect discomfort:

Predict:  By catching signs that the driver’s brain is about to initiate a movement – such as turning the steering wheel or pushing the accelerator pedal – driver assist technologies can begin the action more quickly. This can improve reaction times and enhance manual driving.

Detect:   By detecting and evaluating driver discomfort, artificial intelligence can change the driving configuration or driving style when in autonomous mode.

Nissan’s B2V technology is the world’s first system of its kind. The driver wears a device that measures brain wave activity, which is then analyzed by autonomous systems. By anticipating intended movement, the systems can take actions – such as turning the steering wheel or slowing the car – 0.2 to 0.5 seconds faster than the driver, while remaining largely imperceptible.

The convenience and pleasure of electric driving: Nissan Intelligent Power

The Nissan IMx KURO zero-emission concept vehicle adopts Nissan’s new electric vehicle platform, designed for maximum efficiency. It allows the floor to be completely flat, resulting in a cavernous cabin and enhanced driving dynamics. With a low center of gravity, the chassis delivers sharp handling that promises to redefine the crossover segment.

The powerful, yet quiet powertrain delivers enhanced excitement. The IMx KURO is propelled by a pair of high-output electric motors at the front and rear, giving it all-wheel-drive capability. They combine to produce 320 kW of power and an astounding 700 Nm of torque – more than the Nissan GT-R supercar – sourced from a high-capacity battery that’s been redesigned and re-engineered for increased energy density. This new battery supports a driving range of more than 600 kilometers on a single charge, so occupants can enjoy an extended adventure without worrying about recharging.

Part of the social infrastructure: Nissan Intelligent Integration

The Nissan IMx KURO can also contribute to the social infrastructure like no other vehicle before it. For example, after transporting its owner to the airport, the IMx KURO can park itself in a spot where the vehicle can connect to the local power grid and act as a “virtual” power plant by returning electricity to the grid, an extension of its vehicle-to-home and vehicle-to-building features. Once the owner returns, the IMx KURO can pick them up at the terminal and drive home. The whole process is carried out efficiently, thanks in part to the increased battery capacity and connected-car technologies, including Seamless Autonomous Mobility.

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New EV design philosophies for the autonomous era

Until now, vehicles have been designed with a clear differentiation between exterior and interior. Exterior design provides a sense of security from the outside, while the interior design gives drivers an appropriate environment for concentrating on driving.

This purpose-based differentiation is likely to change with the arrival of fully autonomous vehicles. Nissan’s designers sought to redefine the interior space of the IMx to create a sense of openness, while maintaining a feeling of privacy. To achieve this, they endeavored to design a space that links up the inside and outside of the vehicle.

They also wanted to convey the key characteristics of electric vehicles – quiet and smooth with a sense of light, yet powerful and dynamic. They took inspiration from the Japanese concepts of ma, a sense of space and time, and wa (harmony), expressing the coexistence of two seemingly contradictory concepts – “stillness” and “motion.”

Exterior design: showcasing the unique characteristics of electric vehicles

Since the IMx’s debut at the Tokyo Motor Show, the Nissan design team, led by Alfonso Albaisa, senior vice president for global design, has made some small but significant changes to the vehicle – hence the new KURO designation.

The team simplified the grille to give it a stronger and more solid character and changed the color from pearl white to a deep smoky gray, with black finished wheels and trim. The new color treatment transforms the IMx, giving it a tougher, substantial presence.

The intention behind the changes to the styling was to test whether the IMx’s concept as a showcase for Nissan’s autonomous driving and electric vehicle leadership could work with a different, more robust personality.

The main design features that made such a strong impact in Tokyo remain unchanged – from the familiar V-motion grille design to the supple character line rises and flows to the hood and rear end. The broad surfaces of the distinctively shaped front fenders start from the grille and expand seamlessly onto the body sides, creating a sense of layers.

“After the Tokyo Motor Show, my team and I continued to consider the IMx’s potential,” Albaisa said. “We asked ourselves if the basic concept of the IMx could be more SUV-inspired by making some relatively simple changes to details, accents and color.”

“Taken all together, these relatively minor changes have combined to give the IMx KURO a completely different personality, and the addition of the KURO moniker reflects that. It looks purposeful and indestructible – which we think is an interesting position for this concept and the application of technologies that is showcased by the vehicle.”

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Interior design: spacious and relaxing, with simplicity

The IMx KURO concept vehicle’s interior adheres to the basic concept of space that can be found in a traditional Japanese house, suggesting a sense of openness.

The car’s panoramic OLED instrument panel displays a view of the external environment in the background. A separate, wood grain-patterned display, positioned below the instrument panel and wrapping around the interior door trims, gives occupants a subtle sense of the outside, similar to shoji, a traditional Japanese paper screen.

The katanagare diagonal pattern on the seats has been delicately etched with a laser cutter. The head rest – patterned like kumiki, a Japanese interlocking wood puzzle – is made from silicon-material cushioning and a frame produced by a 3D printer.

Artificial intelligence enables the driver to control the instrument panel with eye movements and hand gestures. This intuitive interface results in fewer physical controls and switches, making the cabin of the IMx simple, yet highly efficient, and adding to its supreme comfort.

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Test Driven

Cadillac CT6 in two words: Luxury Re-Invented

Cadillac is a name that has been defining luxury in large sedans for decades. General Motors, the American Car Manufacturer Giant, uses Cadillac’s brand to show off its standards for luxury, comfort and executive-made vehicles. However, this time and with the Cadillac CT6, the bar has been raised so high that in our opinion even the next Cadillac will not be able to surpass it. General Motors has re-invented the definition of luxury vehicles with the CT6; So here’s a question for all the rivals: what’s your next move?

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Our story began a few days prior to my scheduled trip to UAE, as I was wondering what car to select for this issue’s test drive, how can we make the test drive more interesting and deliver added value exceeding the usual expectations of our readers. I needed a car that impresses on first sight and helps reduce the fatigue of constant travel as I was exhausted from the various trips taken during that period of time. I thought to myself what car has all the comfort, luxury and power and is at the same time suitable for an executive on the run? What would be better than the Cadillac CT6 to fulfill those needs?

So I made the call to General Motors office in Dubai and to my hush luck the car was already reserved and not available for the selected time frame. The disappointment was clearly shown on my face that day. Just a few minutes afterwards, the guys from General Motors gave me a call to confirm that after a divine intervention the car is now available. God was on my side that day.

Hopped into the airplane and was on my way to Dubai, I was day dreaming how I would love to go and see the pilot’s cabin and realize my childhood dream of seeing an airplane cockpit however the airplane rules and regulations nowadays doesn’t allow anyone to go inside the airplane’s cockpit but that is another story.

Reaching my hotel as usual, the Cadillac CT6 was right at the entrance waiting to be delivered.

The exterior was astonishing, The CT6 had that looks that amazes you from first sight with an impression that lasts a lifetime.

Our Cadillac CT6 had an astonishing Stone Gray Metallic Color that screams this is the perfect CEO Color. The design of the exterior was even more attractive, the CT6 is a large sedan carefully crafted by General Motors’ engineers with attention to every detail, turning this machine into a luxurious flagship with a spice of sportiness.

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The first thing you notice about the CT6 is its aggressive front inspired by all Cadillac’s latest designs with bold elements. The large signature Cadillac grille, and the Indirect Fire LED-powered multifunctional headlamps with daytime running functionality swept down along the front bumper gives the CT6 its forceful appearance with a touch of elegance. The sides are characterized by sweeping lines connecting the front to the rear with a low stance design for that extra sportiness feel. The rear’s design is forceful with the integrated rear spoiler and the iconic signature vertical lighting system.       

Inside the cockpit, it is a whole different story. The exquisite materials used from genuine leather to carbon fiber and that touch of chrome is all about sportiness and luxury. The CT6 from the inside gave me that confusion feeling: Do I want to sit behind the wheels or get me a chauffeur and enjoy its rear seats elegance? It had so much room and comfort in the back, it felt like a first class travel deal of a lifetime. I can truly imagine myself living the life of luxury inside this amazing machine. We had the Premium Luxury trim which is over the top however the upper trim “Platinum” comes with the rear seat infotainment system that includes two independent, articulating 10-inch-diagonal HD screens. The screens have been designed to seamlessly integrate into the CT6’s cabin and retract into the front seat backs when not in use.  Simply wow.

Seated behind the wheel, it felt like an airplane cockpit. The unfulfilled childhood dream of visiting an airplane cockpit is now realized with the CT6 futuristic dashboard, the roof buttons, the rear camera mirror and most importantly that gear box design that got me day dreaming of being a sky pilot. The first thing I did is turn on the ignition, fasten my seatbelt and say “this is your captain speaking, we are now ready for take-off.

And just like every Cadillac test drive we took from 2014, it had to be from Dubai to Abu Dhabi. The roads seemed empty with a complete sound isolation. I was driving alone on those long 200 Km distance roads indulging myself with sophistication or this is how it felt like; driving was never that easy. The advanced chassis structure and magnetic ride control made every turn seams un-existing.  Our trim had a 3.6L V-6 direct-injected DOHC with VVT coped with the Hydra-Matic 8L45 paddle-shift eight-speed transmission setup on an All-wheel drive platform producing 335 Hp @ 6800 rpm and a 385 Nm @ 5300 rpm torque, over taking any vehicle was impressive. As for the Platinum trim we are talking about a 3.0L Twin Turbo needless to say more.

Just like any first class package, the drive inside the CT6 comes with extra benefits. The list is long as the CT6 had almost everything any CEO needs inside his flagship from connectivity to USB ports to perfectly setup storage room on the front or rear seats, Quad-Zone automatic climate control, Driver Assist Package including adaptive cruise control and Forward and Reverse Automatic Braking, Night Vision, Heated and Ventilated Seats and that Extended Comfort with five massage programs and much more. it felt like a moving SPA within a futuristic office.

And wait that is not just it, the CT6 has one feature that I liked in particular the AUTO VEHICLE HOLD which prevents the Cadillac to creep forward or backward and comes in handy to reduce fatigue when in traffic.

The Cadillac CT6 is a true game changer in the world of luxurious sedans and the price tag is lower than its rivals.
I can truly say that the Cadillac CT6 is made for only those who dare greatly. 

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Automotive news

EMC celebrates 50 years of Mercedes-AMG with thrilling track day at Yas Marina Circuit

This year marks the 50th anniversary of AMG, the high-performance division of luxury carmaker Mercedes-Benz.

To celebrate this landmark occasion Emirates Motor Company, authorized distributor of Mercedes-Benz in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi and the flagship company of ALFAHIM, hosted the AMG Performance Tour at Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi.

The tour visited the home of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on December 22ndwith a host of high-performance cars such as the C43 AMG Coupe, the E43 Sport AMG 4M and the G63 Manufaktur available for test drives around the track.

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This annual event, which is now in its sixth year, will be testing a series of exciting vehicles, such as the recently launched, high end AMGs, the E63 and the S63, and will also encompass the sport range which includes the GLC43, the GLE43, and SLC43, and finally, the signature vehicles of C63 and CLA45.

As well as testing their skills on the twists and turns of the Yas Marina Circuit, AMG customers also put the cars through their paces on the Drag Race track and Auto X.

AMG Driving Academy instructors were also on hand to offer expert tips and advice on how to handle the track and the cars safely, with participants also able to make a video of their driving experience during a ‘lead and follow’ session with professional drivers.

Chris Edwards, General Manager of EMC Passenger Cars, said:

“The AMG Performance Tour is a great way to discover the joy of driving.

“For half a century, AMG has produced some of the most exciting luxurious vehicles ever driven and that tradition of excellence continues today.

“The event was a great opportunity for racing enthusiasts and EMC customers to experience what it is like to drive some of AMG’s most advanced, and thrilling, vehicles on a world-class race track.

“The Yas Marina Circuit has witnessed some incredible motorsports action, so it was only fitting that the track hosts the AMG Performance Tour. Everyone at EMC is looking forward to welcoming all of the drivers and celebrating 50 fantastic years of AMG.”

For half a century, AMG has constantly strived to push the limits of engineering and performance by modifying some of the world’s most prestigious vehicles.

Founded in 1967 by engineers Hans Werner Aufrecht and Erhard Melcher, the letters AMG stand for Aufrecht, Melcher and Großaspach, the town where Aufrecht was born. Over the last five decades the company’s high-performance modifications of Mercedes-Benz vehicles have become motorsports legends winning countless races and awards.

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Tuned Cars

The Punisher, Winner of Emirates Custom Show 2015

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Make : Chevrolet
Model : Camaro
Year : 2010

Owner : Hussein Ahmad Abdallah
Country : United Arab Emirates
Member of : UAE Camaro Club

Performance & Engine Upgrades

 

  • American Racing Headers Cat Back Muffler System
  • American Air Craft Header Plate (Perforated For Reverse Hood Kit)
  • Airbrush on Turbo
  • MSD Spark Plug Wires – 8.5 mm
  • NJK Spark Plugs
  • SLP 160° Thermostat
  • Comp Cams Kit
  • COMETIC Head Gasket
  • ROLLMASTER-Double Roller Timing Set
  • Mailing High Volume Oil Pump
  • Titanium Intake Valves & Springs
  • ARP Head Bolts
  • LS Valve Cover Gasket Set
  • Short Block 416
  • Callies 6.125”H Beam Rods
  • Diamond Custom Forged Pistons-Ceramic Coated
  • CLEVITE MS Main Bearings
  • Gun Metal Engine Oil Cap – THE PUNISHER BILLET
  • Dynamic Injectors 850
  • PEDDARS XA Adjust Coil Cover
  • Vented Drilled & Slotted Rotors by Chromes Brakes in Red – Front & Rear
  • HP tuned
  • Skip Shift Eliminator
  • 1400 HP Axils / CV Joints from SPOON PERFORMANCE
  • MSD Fuel Pump Voltage Booster
  • McLeod Clutch
  • MSD 2-step Launch Control
  • HOTCHKIS MAX Under Body Brace
  • HOTCHKIS SWAYBAR- Front & Rear
  • BMR Differential Bushing kit
  • JRE PERFORMANCE Differential
  • 1400 HP 9 inch Rear End from the Drive Shaft Shop
  • TERMEC – 6060 Gearbox
  • HAWK Brake Pads-Front & Rear
  • POLYRATHAN Body Bush Kit
  • Double Fuel Pump from HENNESSEY
  • RD Engine Bay – Chrome
  • ACC Stainless Steel Inner Fender & Fuse Box Cover
  • ACC Stainless Steel Radiator Cover & Cap
  • ACC Perforated Stainless Steel Header Plate
  • ACC Stainless Steel 6pc Shock Tower Covers
  • ACC Stainless Steel Battery Terminal Cap
  • ACC Chrome Cap Covers
  • ACC Fuel Rail Perforated
  • ACC Inner Fender Polished Lighting Kit
  • Oil Catch Can
  • Laser Cut Engine Custom Punisher Logo
  • Under Hood Customized Red Lights (2 nos)
  • Engine Bay Red Light Strips
  • Customized Red Radiator Hose from DP hoses (2 nos)
  • Ball Bearing Turbo – Garrett GT42RS 1000 HP Upgraded to 1200 HP
  • Tial V60 Red Massive Wastegate
  • Tial “Q” 50 Blow-off Valve
  • Aluminum Intercooler Tubing
  • Intercooler 1200 HP
  • Battery On/Off switch
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Exterior

  • New free airbrush 3D with triple action red candy and black
  • FORGIATO D FALCO Retractable Headlight LED Mesh Grille
  • American Car Craft Camaro Vent Grille – Side Laser Mesh
  • Oracle Concept Side Mirrors
  • Reverse Taillight Bezel
  • ACS Upper Rear Quarter Ports Stingray C7
  • ACS T3 Front Bumper Dual Ports
  • ACS Eagle T3 Single LED Lighting
  • Reverse Tilt/Flip Hood Kit by Halo Super Cars                                                                    
  • Carbon Fiber Street Scene Body Kit
  • Hood Laser Cut Custom Two Holder Punisher Logo
  • Demon Eyes Headlight Halo Rings in Red Color                                  
  • Front Tow Hook eye Proven Wicked
  • STILLEN Front SplitterCarbon Fiber
  • LED Halo Headlights
  • PHASTEK LED “Mail-Slot” Scanner Bar 22”
  • SEIBON BBII Style Carbon Fiber Hood
  • Carbon Fiber Wipers
  • Concept Style Side Markers Front & Rear
  • Axis Zero Wheels 20/9front & 20/10rear
  • NITTO Tyres –INVO 275/40/20 Front
  • Mickey Thompson Tyres – 305/35/20Rear
  • Black Quarter Class Cover
  • Side Body Scoop by XENON
  • Rear Diffuser Havoc Carbon Fiber
  • Carbon Fiber Trunk
  • Carbon Fiber Spoiler
  • Red LED Taillights by CG
  • Taillights Bizzle Carbon Fiber
  • VDI Lambo Doors
  • 3d Carbon Front Fender Vents
  • Rivet , Black Billet door handles
  • Vented Drilled and Slotted Rotors by Chrome Brakes in Red color
  • Custom Style Rear Roofline Spoiler – by DAWN
  • Red Punisher License Plate tag
  • Red Punisher Logo Valve Caps in Black Aluminum Steel
  • Custom Display Stand for the Rotors
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Interior

  • Grant Steering Wheel with Punisher Logo
  • HURST built/plus 2 Shifter
  • MSD Programmable Digital Shift Light
  • Autometer Boost Gauge
  • Seatbelt Harness-Comforter Pad style
  • Leather Seats Red & Black
  • Embedded Punisher Skull Signature on seats
  • Custom Floor Mat with Embedded punisher signature
  • TORQ Racing Stripe Pedal Sets
  • Carbon Fiber Door Handle Trim
  • Carbon Fiber Door & Dash Panel Inserts
  • Interior LED Red Lights
  • Suede Roof Top
  • Cluster Surround – Gauge Carbon Fiber
  • Zex Nitrous Purge Kit/Red Purge-Cloud LED Kit
  • Zex Rapid Fire Red EX Rapid Fire Purge Module Kit
  • Two Nitrous Bottles Free hand Airbrushed in 3D
  • Custom Bracket Laser cut for the NOS bottle
  • Custom Door Sills LED in Punisher Logo Fire Design
  • Turbo Smart E2 Boost Control

I.C.E

  • Complete Sound System with lighting by “HSV”
  • LED Trunk Red Lights
  • Red Trunk Mat with Embedded Punisher LOGO
  • Metra Dash Kit for DVD & Radio
  • Trunk Speakers Laser Cut Punisher
  • PLX Car to Smart Phone Connection or iPad
  • Red Car Sticker – Music Rhythm LED Flash Lamp Sound
  • 2 X Subwoofers
  • 2 X Tweeters
  • 1 X Component Speaker
  • 1 X 6/9 inch Speaker
  • 3 X Amplifiers
  • 2 X Capacitors
  • 1 X Kenwood DVD Screen With Navigation
  • Customized LED Light Designs
  • Customized LED Oring Speaker Door Lights

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Categories
Automotive news

Aston Martin at the 2017 Dubai International Motor Show

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The Aston Martin Valkyrie hypercar makes a hugely anticipated appearance, being shown for the first time in the region to the public. The product of a unique Innovation Partnership between the British luxury brand and eminent F1TM team Red Bull Racing, this ambitious, uncompromising and wholly extraordinary collaboration combines the vision and skills of two world-leading brands to create a road car the like of which has never been seen before.

The show also sees the hugely iconic DB5 Convertible displayed. Regarded by many as the most beautiful Aston Martin produced, and an evolution of the final series of DB4, the DB5 is famous for being the most recognised cinematic James Bond car, first appearing in the James Bond film Goldfinger in 1964. Just 123 convertible DB5s were produced between 1963 and 1965, making it one of the rarest – and most desirable – models created.

The newly launched V8-powered DB11 is shown for the first time in the Middle East at the show. Aston Martin’s definitive GT – the acclaimed DB11 – is now available with a 4.0-litre twin-turbocharged V8 engine. The new powerplant provides the opportunity to reveal more of the DB11’s sporting character, while expanding its global appeal with a combination of exceptional performance and improved efficiency.

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Also displayed is a Middle East exclusive, the Vanquish S Pearl Edition, limited to just 10 models and inspired by the region’s long association with the pearl industry. The Vanquish S Pearl Edition takes the tradition, value and rarity of the pearl, with its regional roots and ties, and uses the artistry of the Q by Aston Martin team to create a truly spectacular car.

“To have such a diverse and renowned array of models on display under one roof in the Middle East is an absolute pleasure. The past few years have been busy ones for us as a marque, and here in-region we are heavily focused on reflecting CEO Dr. Andy Palmer’s vision of driving a renewal of the Aston Martin name,” stated Christopher Sheppard, CEO MENA, Aston Martin.

Raring to go, Aston Martin’s commitment to the Middle East is clear. Seven all-new cars are set to launch in seven years with a new model or derivative launching every 6 months – breathing life into the product line, and solidifying the company’s standing in the automotive world as offering a broad portfolio of products, cutting-edge technologies, and the absolute best of British design and craftsmanship.

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Categories
Events Coverage

RYMCO Launches the World’s Best-Selling SUV, Nissan X-TRAIL 2018 in Lebanon with Upgraded Enhancements

Rasamny-Younis Motor Company and Nissan Middle East have launched the world’s best-selling SUV in an upbeat event in Lebanon. The new Nissan X-TRAIL 2018 model available now with a range of upgrades, which further enhance its quality and refinement. The changes include a distinctive and robust redesign of the exterior, a higher-quality interior with new features, and additional practicality for owners and innovative technologies to make life on the road more enjoyable and safer.

With a crowd of regional and local media representatives, as well as main public and business figures, the event marked the presence of the newly crowned Miss Lebanon 2017, Perla Helou, who made her first public appearance and received her prize vehicle – the Nissan X-TRAIL 2018 – provided by RYMCO. The event has also featured a live performance by Aziza.

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Globally, Nissan has sold over 835,000 units in FY16, making X-TRAIL the highest-selling SUV worldwide and a customer favourite. New upgrades to the new 2018
Nissan X-TRAIL give young families and adventure-seekers more premium style options and features to enhance the driving experience. Customers can choose from the five or seven-seat version of the new Nissan X-TRAIL as well as five new vibrant exterior vehicle shades, while still indulging in the unrivalled space and comfort.

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Nissan Intelligent Mobility is the name for the brand’s strategy which make its cars more desirable by redefining how they are driven, powered and integrated into society. Powered by a range of Nissan’s Intelligent Mobility technologies, the new X-TRAIL is equipped with three new driver-friendly innovative features for the first time – Intelligent Rear View Mirror, Intelligent Emergency Brakes, and Intelligent Cruise Control. The goal is to make Nissan drivers feel more confident, excited and connected, while also enhancing road and passenger safety.

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Motoring Journalist got the chance to experience the new Nissan X-Trail 2018 on the Lebanese mountainous roads exploring new areas of Lebanon and exploring new features of the X-Trail.

Banking on its heritage as a leading SUV from its debut, the Nissan X-Trail took a trip down the memory lane of historical Lebanese spots in Deir el Qamar and the Shouf area show-offing its latest improvements on the exterior, interior, performance and technology features.

The new Nissan X-TRAIL 2018, will have a starting price of $30,900 including VAT & registration, and is Available now at all RYMCO showrooms across Lebanon.

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Automotive news In the News

Al Tayer Motors launches 2018 Maserati GranTurismo and GranCabrio in the UAE

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Umberto Cini, Managing Director of Maserati Middle East, Africa and Asia and Martino Picotti, Senior Brand Manager - Maserati, Al Tayer Motors.

Al Tayer Motors, the official Maserati importer-dealer in the UAE, launched the 2018 GranTurismo and GranCabrio at the Dubai Autodrome marking the regional debut of the Italian luxury sports cars.

The event was designed to showcase the exhilarating performance of the cars and give customers the opportunity to fully experience their sporty character on the racing track.

“The GranTurismo has evolved over time to become one of the world’s most iconic sports cars and remains a resolutely sporty luxury coupé with a uniquely timeless elegance. Stunning design, superb performance, distinctive sound and unmatched driving delight combine to give automotive connoisseurs a truly enjoyable ownership experience,” said Martino Picotti, Senior Brand Manager – Maserati, Al Tayer Motors.

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The starting price of the 2018 GranTurismo is AED 485,000/- while the GranCabrio is priced from AED 575,000/-, which includes three years unlimited mileage warranty and three years or 60,000km service package. The cars are expected to be available at the Al Tayer Motors Maserati showrooms in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah by mid-November.

The GranTurismo and GranCabrio range has been streamlined for 2018 and two distinct versions will be offered – Sport and MC. The 4.2-litre GranTurismo and GranCabrio has been discontinued, while the Sport and MC share the same powertrain V8 of 4.7-liter and interior personalization packages.

The MC – for Maserati Corse – takes on an important ambassadorial role for the entire Maserati range, representing the company’s long and illustrious racing heritage. Replacing the previous MC Stradale, it offers a wide array of tried and tested features from other Maserati models.

The naturally aspirated V8 engine is hand-assembled by Ferrari in Maranello and weighs only 175kg. This 4.7-liter unit features a wet sump and – exclusive to Maserati – a cross-plane crankshaft. This provides unrivalled throttle response, free-revving characteristics and the thrilling Maserati signature sound.

When it came to the MY18 restyle, the timeless Pininfarina design was treated with the utmost respect by the Maserati Design Centre. The results include even better aerodynamics and compliance with the latest pedestrian safety regulations.

The new front and rear bumper design for the MY18 GranTurismo and GranCabrio elegantly refines the visual impact of the striking original styling. Additionally, the headlights for each model have been slightly restyled for 2018, and a new rear-view camera is now included. The Sport and MC share the same basic features, although each has unique inserts to accentuate its distinctive character.

The GranTurismo, together with its GranCabrio sibling, is assembled at the historic Maserati plant of Ciro Menotti in Modena, following the highest manufacturing and quality control standards in the world. More than 37,000 GranTurismo and GranCabrio models have been sold globally since 2007.

Highlights include:

  • Enhancements to the classic Pininfarina design
  • More aerodynamic exterior restyling includes new bumpers, grille and front air ducts
  • Drag coefficient improved to 0.32 for the GranTurismo and 0.33 for the GranCabrio
  • Naturally aspirated 4.7-litre V8 with 460hp
  • Six-speed ZF automatic gearbox
  • Intuitive new driver interface & infotainment system
  • 4” high-resolution, capacitive touchscreen
  • Redesigned central console with double rotary control
  • Compatibility with Apple Car Play and Android Auto
  • New double dial Maserati clock
  • Standard Harman Kardon Premium Sound system

The eternal GranTurismo

The Pininfarina-designed GranTurismo is a historically important, brand-defining model for Maserati.

The luxurious four-seater sports coupé was conceived as an ultra-modern interpretation of the brand’s very first production grand tourer, the elegant Maserati A6 1500 of 1947. And over the years, the GranTurismo has evolved into one of the most iconic Maserati cars ever built, thanks to its uncompromised GT character.

This character is perfectly expressed by a uniquely compelling combination – bold yet elegant design; the exhilarating, inspirational performance of a naturally aspirated, Maranello-built V8 engine; and hand-crafted comfort offered by four individual, Poltrona Frau® seats.

In essence, the GranTurismo is the ultimate expression of what grand touring means to Maserati.

 

Open-air grand tourer

The Maserati GranCabrio – the convertible interpretation of the iconic GranTurismo – made its world debut at the 2009 Frankfurt Motor Show. Designed by Pininfarina, it offered the joys of luxury grand touring in a full four-seater from a breathtaking new perspective. The new model features a subtle restyle that respects the dramatic elegance of the original. Its sensuous lines can be traced directly to its ancestor, the 1950 A6G Frua Spyder – a highly exclusive production convertible with a race car engine.

The timeless design is accompanied by the exhilarating, inspirational performance of a naturally aspirated, Maranello-built V8 engine and the hand-crafted comfort of four individual Poltrona Frau® seats. In short, the GranCabrio is the ultimate expression of luxurious, open-top grand touring at its authentic best.

ENJOY THE VIDEO BELOW:

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