Fast Lane: Hyundai Kona N arrives this year, Golf GTI with 266kmh top speed

The Hyundai Kona N comes with launch control, five drive modes and a throaty exhaust.
The Hyundai Kona N comes with launch control, five drive modes and a throaty exhaust.PHOTO: HYUNDAI

Kia Carnival sizes up


PHOTO: KIA

After a decade, the Kia Carnival is back.

And the full-size South Korean multipurpose vehicle is bigger than ever, measuring 5,155mm tip to tip (40mm longer than its predecessor) and boasting a class-busting 627-litre boot.

It is powered by a 2.2-litre turbodiesel making 202hp and 440Nm. This aluminium power plant is 20kg lighter than the previous steel one.

The imposing-looking car features a full-width LED bar in the rear, and reclining second-row and ventilated seats.

Prices start from $211,999 for the seven-seater, and from $205,999 for the eight-seater (no reclining second row).

Hyundai Kona N to arrive this year

It is official. The fiery Hyundai Kona N will arrive later this year, along with the facelifted i30 N.

Both will have an eight-speed dual-clutch gearbox.

The Kona N comes with launch control, five drive modes and a throaty exhaust. The hot crossover is powered by a 2-litre four-cylinder turbo engine making 280hp, and rides on 19-inch lightweight forged alloys.

Suzuki Swift Sport clocks century sprint of 9.1 seconds


PHOTO: SUZUKI

The affordable hot hatch is back, in the form of the new Suzuki Swift Sport.

Powered by a 1.4-litre turbo engine paired with a six-speed gearbox as well as a 48-volt "mild hybrid" system, the 1,020kg hatch has 127hp available and hits 100kmh in 9.1 seconds and a top speed of 210kmh.

Prices start from $109,900.

Defender 90 lands


PHOTO: LAND ROVER

The Land Rover Defender 90 - a smaller, more adorable Defender - is here.

Priced at $304,999, the still sizeable three-door sport utility vehicle (SUV) is touted as the "most capable Land Rover ever made".

Despite being no bigger than some family cars, it comes with six seats.

Power comes from a 2-litre turbo engine making 300hp and 400Nm. It takes 8 seconds to reach 100kmh, which is pretty brisk for an SUV.

Peugeot with hologram-like instrumentation


PHOTO: PEUGEOT

Peugeot's latest crossover, the 2008, is here.

Powered by a 1.2-litre turbo engine mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission, the subcompact follows in the footsteps of the larger and brilliant 3008.

It features the world's first 3D instrumentation cluster, which projects information like a hologram.

A 7-inch high-definition infotainment touchscreen comes with seven toggle switches to provide direct access to main functions, including active safety systems.

Prices start from $120,888.

Better-equipped VW Polo


PHOTO: VOLKSWAGEN

With more than 18 million units built, the Volkswagen Polo is one of the world's most successful compacts.

The latest version is better equipped than ever, with LED head and tail lights, a digital cockpit and infotainment system, as well as a multi-function steering wheel.

Also, the car will have adaptive cruise control and lane assist.

Ford develops GPS-assisted headlights ahead of the curve

Engineers from Ford Research and Advanced Engineering Europe are testing a technology which uses real-time location data to effectively show the car the way to go.

The predictive smart headlight system directs beams onto upcoming corners before drivers may have seen them, illuminating hazards and other road users more quickly and effectively.

The prototype advanced lighting system uses GPS location data, advanced technologies and highly accurate street geometry information to accurately identify turns in the road ahead.

An algorithm calculates the trajectory and speed of the vehicle to proactively adjust the direction of its headlights, providing optimal light coverage of bends, junctions and hazards lurking around the corner.

Bentley Flying Spur V8 in Singapore


PHOTO: BENTLEY

Bentley's new Flying Spur V8 is here.

Priced from $919,000 before COE and options, the car is powered by a 4-litre twin-turbocharged V8 making 542 bhp and 770Nm.

Despite being bigger and more luxurious, it takes just 4.1 seconds for the behemoth to go from zero to 100kmh and onto a top velocity of 318kmh.

It has a significantly longer wheelbase, three-chamber air suspension and unique crystal-cut headlights.

Prices for the 6-litre W12 version start from $1,019,000 before the certificate of entitlement and options.

More powerful Suzuki GSX-S1000


PHOTO: SUZUKI

Suzuki's new GSX-S1000 comes with a completely new design featuring sharp lines and LED lighting.

The naked bike has a Euro 5 152hp inline-four engine with a flat torque curve.

A quickshifter, auto-blipper, selectable riding modes and various levels of traction control are part of the package. The bike also has a bigger fuel tank and wider handlebars.

Massive SUV with 1,012hp American tuner


PHOTO: HENNESSEY MAMMOTH

Hennessey has unveiled a seven-seat super sport utility vehicle (SUV) based on the Ram TRX.

The Mammoth 1000 SUV boasts 1,012hp, 1,314Nm and a whole lot of attitude. The 6.2-litre supercharged V8 SUV hits 100kmh in under 3.5 seconds, and does the quarter-mile in 11.4 seconds.

Only 20 units will be made.

Lotus' last pure combustion engined sports car

Geely-owned and Chinese-led niche manufacturer Lotus will unveil a pure combustion engined sports car called the Emira (codenamed Type 131) on July 6.

It will be Lotus' last model with a pure combustion engine. By 2028, the British brand expects to have four new platforms - Hypercar, Sports, Premium and E-Sports.

VW's first performance EV


PHOTO: VOLKSWAGEN

Volkswagen has expanded the electric ID family with the sporty ID4 GTX.

With dual-motor all-wheel drive, it is the first model based on the modular electric drive matrix.

It has an output of 220kW going to both axles, allowing the car to climb steep ramps, hit 100kmh in 6.2 seconds and reach an electronically limited top speed of 180kmh.

Toyota to buy Lyft's self-driving unit

Toyota Motor will acquire United States ride-hailing firm Lyft's self-driving technology unit for US$550 million (S$729 million), according to Reuters.

The acquisition is reportedly of Level 5 automation (the highest), which will provide Toyota access to 300-plus employees at Lyft and a direct presence in Silicon Valley.

For Lyft, the deal will allow it to become profitable sooner and take away the burden and risk of developing a costly technology that has yet to enter the mainstream.

Toyota has other self-driving projects, including a joint venture with SoftBank, and is forming a consortium with General Motors, suppliers and semiconductor companies.

It owns a stake in Chinese ride-hailing firm Didi Chuxing and South-east Asia's Grab.

Lyft already allows consumers to book rides in self-driving vehicles in some cities in partnerships with Alphabet Inc's Waymo and Motional, the joint venture between Hyundai Motor and Aptiv.

Golf GTI with 266kmh top speed


PHOTO: VOLKSWAGEN

The Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport 45 is the sixth generation of Golf to be bestowed with a special anniversary edition.

It is based on the Golf GTI Clubsport - the quickest and most powerful production Golf GTI in the current eighth-generation line-up - and adds a package of upgrades.

The car has 300hp and 400Nm like the GTI Clubsport, and clocks the same 5.6-second century sprint. But its speed limiter has been removed to allow for a maximum velocity of 266kmh.

It has a titanium sports exhaust system, 19-inch alloys and a '45' lettering on its side sill panels.