Fast Lane: A Ford that can park itself

Mercedes-Benz S-class Cabriolet
Mercedes-Benz S-class CabrioletPHOTOS: AUDI, BMW AG, JAGUAR, MERCEDES-BENZ, MOTOCHIMP
Jaguar MKII, MKVII (right) and XK150, and Land Rover Series I (left), Series II and Series III.
Jaguar MKII, MKVII (right) and XK150, and Land Rover Series I (left), Series II and Series III.
Audi’s new A5 Cabriolet
Audi’s new A5 Cabriolet
The BMW 320i Gran Turismo M Sport
The BMW 320i Gran Turismo M Sport
Motochimp, a Singapore-designed electric scooter
Motochimp, a Singapore-designed electric scooter

A Ford that can park itself

Ford is taking assisted parking to another level. Its Enhanced Active Park Assist will control steering, gear selection and forward and reverse motion at a push of a button.

The system can automatically enter and exit a parallel parking space and can reverse the vehicle into a perpendicular space.

It also uses sensors to locate suitable spaces.

The car will even brake if it is backing out in the path of a vehicle or pedestrian.

Ford is also developing a new technology that could help drivers steer around stopped or slower vehicles to help avoid collisions.

Another driver assistance on the cards is Wrong Way Alert, which uses a windscreen-mounted camera and information from the car's navigation system to provide drivers with audible and visual warnings when driving through two "No Entry" signs on a motorway ramp.

The system will first be available for customers in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.


Mercedes-Benz launches S-class Cabriolet

The Mercedes-Benz S-class Cabriolet (pictured) is back after 45 years.

The car will satisfy those who find a convertible from Bentley or Rolls- Royce ostentatious.

The S500 Cabriolet's 4.7-litre biturbo V8 makes 455bhp and 700Nm of torque to propel the 5m-long 2.1-tonne topless cruiser to 100kmh in 4.6 seconds.

The roof can be operated at up to 60kmh. The S500 Cabriolet is retailing at $679,888.


Borneo Motors donates $100,000 to Singapore Children's Society

Last Friday, the Singapore Children's Society received a donation of $100,000 from Toyota agent Borneo Motors at the 27th Edition of Toyota Classics.

The presentation was held at Capitol Theatre.

This year's Toyota Classics marks the start of Borneo Motors' 50th- anniversary celebration as well as the 50th anniversary of Singapore-Japan diplomatic relations.


Ice-drive in Lapland

Jaguar-Land Rover has opened its first ice driving academy, offering enthusiasts a driving-and-travel adventure on the edge of the Arctic Circle.

Based at the company's cold-weather testing facility in Lapland, Sweden, guests at the Ice Academy will have the opportunity to push themselves to the limit in Jaguar and Land Rover high-performance vehicles.

Experts will be on hand to guide participants.

Models such as the Jaguar MKII, MKVII and XK150, and Land Rover Series I, Series II and Series III without modern brakes, power steering or traction control will also be available alongside modern models.

A three- and four-night programme starts at €2,490 (S$3,812) and includes accommodation, meals and transfers.

For more information, visit jaguar.com/icedrivesweden or landrover.com/icedrivesweden.


Audi A5 Cabriolet is larger and lighter

Audi's new A5 Cabriolet (pictured) boasts a larger interior, more comfort, convenience and class.

Its torsional rigidity is said to have increased by 40 per cent, making it the stiffest topless car in its calls. Yet its weight has fallen by as much as 40kg.

Three engines will be available initially - a 190bhp 2-litre turbodiesel, 218bhp 3-litre turbodiesel and a 252bhp 2-litre turbo petrol.

A 190bhp 2-litre turbo petrol and 286bhp 3-litre turbodiesel will follow.

Seat belt microphones and automatic acoustic hood with new one-touch operation will be standard fare.

An S5 Cabriolet with a 354bhp turbocharged V6 and all-wheel-drive will also be available.


BMW 320i Gran Turismo M Sport gets an upgrade

The BMW 320i Gran Turismo M Sport (pictured) has arrived.

At 4,824mm long, the car is about 200mm longer than the other members of the 3-series family.

It comes with LED headlights for dipped and high beam and the LED front fog lamps.

The interior boasts upgraded materials and accents. Extra chrome around the controls and new decorative wood elements, colours and leather trim add to its premium feel.

A wheelbase lengthened by 110mm (to 2,920mm) ensures lots of legroom.

A large tailgate opens to reveal a 520-litre boot. The car has 184bhp going to its rear wheels.


Nissan Micra comes with car-sharing programme

Nissan is pioneering a new car-sharing scheme with the latest Micra hatch.

Nissan Intelligent Get & Go Micra hinges on social networking, allowing Nissan to profile-match consumers.

Launching initially in Paris later this year, cars are expected on the road by April next year.

The service, based on a unique algorithm that uses social profiling and geo-localisation technology, will match compatible owners with complementary driving needs to form a shared ownership community.

With bespoke monthly invoicing based on car usage, members can expect no surprises.


Singapore-designed electric bike to debut at international design fair

Motochimp (pictured), a Singapore-designed electric scooter, is launching at the Shenzhen International Industrial Design Fair this week.

It goes on sale first in Japan, with the rest of Asia, the United Kingdom and Europe to follow.

Priced from US$2,000 (S$2,802), Motochimp can be charged in 60 minutes and has a range of up to 60km.

It is designed by Singapore's Vanda Electrics, the same company behind the upcoming Dendrobium electric supercar.

Christopher Tan

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 12, 2016, with the headline 'Fast Lane'. Print Edition | Subscribe