Fast lane: New models from Mercedes-AMG

The GLC43 (right) and the CLA45 Shooting Brake (below).
The GLC43 (above) and the CLA45 Shooting Brake. PHOTO: MERCEDES-AMG
The GLC43 (right) and the CLA45 Shooting Brake (below).
The GLC43 and the CLA45 Shooting Brake (above). PHOTO: MERCEDES-AMG
The GLC43 (right) and the CLA45 Shooting Brake (below).
Lit Motors C-1. PHOTO: LIT MOTORS
The GLC43 (right) and the CLA45 Shooting Brake (below).
Ducati Multistrada 1200 Enduro. PHOTO: DUCATI

New models from Mercedes-AMG

Mercedes-AMG has unveiled two more models: the new GLC43 and a facelifted CLA45 Shooting Brake.

The GLC43 is a stoked SUV with a 367bhp/520Nm 3-litre bi-turbo V6 and air suspension. It sprints from rest to 100kmh in 4.9 seconds and on to a regulated top velocity of 248kmh.

The CLA45 Shooting Brake features full-LED headlamps, a chromed twin-louvre grille and improved aerodynamics. Two new 18-inch light-alloy wheels join the range of standard-issue equipment. Its output has been raised to 381bhp and 475Nm, making it the fastest compact all-wheel-drive wagon in town.


Two-wheel self-balancing electric car

Move over Tesla, the Lit Motors C-1 is around the corner.

The self-balancing two-wheel electric car takes up less than half the space of traditional cars, is safer than a motorbike and promises a far smaller carbon footprint than a Tesla.

There is no word yet on when the C-1 will be available, but San Francisco-based Lit Motors has already increased its basic price to US$24,000 (S$32,881) from US$19,000 when it announced the project three years ago.


Battery-operated robot to transport car parts

At BMW's Wackersdorf plant near Munich, an experimental autonomous car parts transporter runs on recycled lithium-ion batteries from the BMW i3.

Equipped with radio transmitters and a digital map, it moves independently.

The vehicle has sufficient battery capacity for a full work shift of eight hours. If all goes well, BMW will roll out this robot across its plants.


Fully loaded Ducati

The new Ducati Multistrada 1200 Enduro is equipped with Bosch Cornering ABS, which allocates braking power optimally between the front and rear. It also limits braking when leaning through corners to maintain stability.

The bike also has full LED headlights (with cornering function).

A new Vehicle Hold Control makes uphill and fully loaded starts (even on slippery ground) easier by modulating rear wheel braking as the rider operates the clutch and throttle.

Other features include eight- level adjustable traction control, semi-active suspension, cruise control and a 5-inch colour TFT Instrumentation display.


High-end hybrid system goes mass

Hybrid technologies previously found in high-end cars such as the Porsche 918 Spyder and BMW i8 will soon be available in mass- market models.

British components maker GKN Driveline has developed an eAxle module that will bring plug-in hybrid options to the segment.

The new eAxle is an evolution of the system GKN designed for the 918 Spyder. The company says the technology can result in a 50 per cent improvement in efficiency.


Hunt for Vespa miniatures

To celebrate Vespa's 70th birthday on April 23, Vespa distributor Mah Pte Ltd is organising an islandwide treasure hunt.

More than 500 miniature Vespa collectibles, featuring 12 different scooter models, have been hidden around Singapore for passers-by to find and collect.

Mah will also give away exclusive Vespa goodie bags filled with limited-edition Vespa paraphernalia to 10 lucky participants who submit photographs of the miniature Vespa that they found to Facebook.com/vespasingapore with the hashtag #vespa70sg.

Christopher Tan

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 26, 2016, with the headline 'Fast lane: New models from Mercedes-AMG'. Print Edition | Subscribe