Fast lane

The Infiniti Q30.
The Infiniti Q30.PHOTO: INFINITI
A 911 Turbo S SG50, custom-built to mark Singapore’s 50 years of independence.
A 911 Turbo S SG50, custom-built to mark Singapore’s 50 years of independence.PHOTO: PORSCHE
The SG50 Ghost Series II.
The SG50 Ghost Series II.PHOTO: ROLLS- ROYCE
The Nissan Qashqai is the most popular SUV sold by authorised agents here.
The Nissan Qashqai is the most popular SUV sold by authorised agents here.PHOTO: ST FILE


The Infiniti Q30 will break cover on Sept 15 at the Frankfurt Motor Show.

Infiniti calls it a "premium active compact", but it is basically a Golf-class hatchback with bits borrowed from the Mercedes- Benz A-class.

Somewhat more intriguing visually, the car represents Infiniti's maiden foray into the compact segment.

The car was first presented as the Q30 Concept at the 2013 Frankfurt show. The production car will be built in Sunderland in Britain.


Ford Motor is developing advanced lighting technology that helps drivers to see potential hazards when driving at night.

A camera-based advanced front lighting system widens beam at junctions and roundabouts.

A GPS-enabled system uses a forward-facing camera to remember roadways and direct lighting to help drivers better see bends in the road – effectively lighting the way home on previously travelled routes.

Spot lighting uses infra-red camera to detect pedestrians, cyclists and animals, as well as highlight potential hazards


German components maker Bosch will be using high-precision maps from Dutch navigation specialist TomTom to develop autonomous systems. Driverless vehicles require ultra-precise maps to navigate. Besides directional information, 3-D data relating to gradients and surface structure is also recorded in such maps.

The two companies aim to “digitise” highways and main arterial roads in Germany by the end of this year, providing navigational accuracy down to the decimetre.


Rolls-Royce has never commissioned a car to commemorate the anniversary of a country. Until now, that is.

The SG50 Ghost Series II has just been completed, and it looks a tad more dignified than cars sporting the SG50 logo.

Its exterior is finished in English White, with a contrasting Consort Red coachline to represent the colours of the Singapore flag. The Merlion and the Singapore skyline motif features in various interior appointments, designed by the Goodwood Bespoke Design studio. Now, all it needs is an extremely wealthy individual with a patriotic streak.


Toyota could wait until 2018 or later to build Lexus cars in China, reported Reuters. With rising labour cost in China and the weakening yen, Toyota said it might be cheaper to make Lexus cars in Japan.

Toyota was expected to start manufacturing its luxury line in China as early as this year. But with China’s car market slowing down significantly – to a growth of just 1.4 per cent in the first half of this year – it is now unlikely that Toyota would take the plunge for at least another few years, probably until 2018 or later.

The delay comes even as rivals such as Nissan’s Infiniti, Jaguar Land Rover and General Motors’ Cadillac have decided to go ahead with plans to begin production in China


Nissan has maintained its pole position in SUV sales among authorised agents here, with 992 units sold in the first half, representing a nearly 16 per cent share of the market. In second place is Subaru, with a distant 532 units, followed by Mitsubishi with 482.

The most popular model was the Nissan Qashqai, available in 1.2- and 2-litre versions. But if parallel imports are included, the Honda Vezel may well be the bestseller.


Stuttgart Auto, which has been representing the Porsche brand in Singapore for the last 30 years, marked its three-decade milestone with a Porsche exhibition at Suntec City yesterday, preceded by a gala dinner on Thursday.

The company, led by entrepreneur Karsono Kwee, also marked the occasion with donations to various organisations, including $100,000 to The Straits Times Pocket Money Fund, which helps disadvantaged school-going children. Mr Kwee thanked customers and supporters, who helped grow the Porsche population here from almost zero to around 4,000 today.

Among exhibits at the event at Suntec were the iconic 911 through the years, the new 911 GT3 RS and a 911 Turbo S SG50, custom-built to mark Singapore’s 50 years of independence.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 25, 2015, with the headline '(No headline) - CTFAST25'. Print Edition | Subscribe