Fast Lane

DBS Superleggera and original 1969 DBS (right)
DBS Superleggera and original 1969 DBS (right)PHOTOS: ASTON MARTIN, AUDI, FORD, LAND ROVER, MCLAREN, MINI
Land Rover's Discovery Sport
Land Rover's Discovery SportPHOTOS: ASTON MARTIN, AUDI, FORD, LAND ROVER, MCLAREN, MINI
Mini’s new John Cooper Works Clubman
Mini’s new John Cooper Works ClubmanPHOTOS: ASTON MARTIN, AUDI, FORD, LAND ROVER, MCLAREN, MINI
McLaren will unveil its new GT (above) in Singapore next week.
McLaren will unveil its new GT (above) in Singapore next week. PHOTOS: ASTON MARTIN, AUDI, FORD, LAND ROVER, MCLAREN, MINI
Q5 TFSI equattro
Q5 TFSI equattroPHOTOS: ASTON MARTIN, AUDI, FORD, LAND ROVER, MCLAREN, MINI
Ford's all-new Focus ST
Ford's all-new Focus STPHOTOS: ASTON MARTIN, AUDI, FORD, LAND ROVER, MCLAREN, MINI

Aston Martin makes James Bond special edition

Aston Martin has unveiled a special edition of its DBS Superleggera to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the sixth James Bond film, which featured the first DBS. It is painted olive-green to match the original 1969 DBS driven by Bond in the movie On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, which was released in the same year.


Ducati Diavel arrives in Singapore

Ducati Singapore has launched the Diavel 1260 and 1260S. With a new 1,262cc Ducati Testastretta DVT engine and modified chassis, the Diavel promises comfort and performance. With 159hp and 129Nm of torque, the sports bike delivers steady pulling power from low engine speeds.


Nissan Skyline gets hands-off single-lane driving tech

Nissan will introduce a new level of autonomous driving in its Skyline range in the third quarter. With navigated highway driving and handsoff single-lane driving capabilities, its latest ProPilot version is designed for on-ramp to off-ramp highway driving.

Also, for the first time, Nissan Skyline cars fitted with the system can be driven hands-free when in a single lane. To enable the latest functions, drivers must first set their destination in the navigation system, creating a predefined travel route. Once the car enters the highway, the new system’s navigated driving becomes available. The system will handle passing, lane diversions and lane exiting.


Land Rover Discovery Sport lets drivers see through bonnet

Land Rover has updated its sevenseat Discovery Sport with more tech. The second row is now split 40:20:40, offering more flexibility.

It comes with a 48-volt mildhybrid system which is paired with its Ingenium engines. There is also a novel three-cylinder plug-in hybrid option due next year. Onboard features include ClearSight Ground View, which allows the driver to “see through” the bonnet. Its infotainment system is compatible with Apple and Android phones, with wireless charging for the latest phone models, and 4G Wi-Fi hotspot.


Mini John Cooper Works Clubman with 306hp

Mini’s new John Cooper Works Clubman features a 2-litre turbo engine, which makes 306hp and 450Nm. Via an eight-speed autobox, it sends the Clubman to 100kmh in 4.9 seconds. The car comes with a booming exhaust, bigger brakes and all-wheel-drive to handle all that power.


New Delphi engine cuts particulate emissions by up to half

Automotive systems maker Delphi Technologies has announced a high-pressure direction injection engine, which promises to emit far less fine particulates. With more than 500 bars of pressure, the system is said to reduce particulate emissions by up to 50 per cent compared with the best 350-bar systems today.


Auto marketplace Carro’s subscription-based service akin to leasing

Singapore-based mega motor marketplace Carro is enticing car buyers with a subscription-based service that is similar to leasing. With no down payment, a motorist can drive off a car such as the Volkswagen Golf or Toyota Altis for as little as $1,199 a month.


McLaren’s first grand tourer debuts here next week

McLaren will unveil its new GT in Singapore next week. The model promises to deliver “competition levels of performance and continent-crossing capability”. The marque’s first grand tourer offers a stowage capacity of 570 litres, with the rear luggage bay accessed via a front-hinged, fulllength glazed rear tailgate, and promises room for bags, golf clubs or skis.

The GT is powered by a 620hp 4-litre twin-turbocharged V8 with 630Nm of torque. It rides on a new suspension with proactive damping, as well as steering and braking tuned for “everyday ease of use”.


Q5 is first of Audi's new plug-in hybrid electric vehicles

Breaking with tradition, Audi is launching its first plug-in petrol-electric hybrid after it has gone to town with its full-electric model. The Q5 TFSI e quattro (above) develops 367hp and 500Nm of torque from just 1,250rpm. It has an electric range of more than 40km and an electric top speed of up to 135kmh.

Audi says the car is "ideal for commuters, fleet operators and as a company car". Describing it as a "trailblazer for a new range of plug-in models", the company says the car is suitable for "most everyday driving distances - including motorway journeys - without backup from the petrol engine". It hits 100kmh in 5.3 seconds and a top speed of 237kmh.

Audi has no plans to import the plug-in Q5 to Singapore, but is expected to introduce its fully electric e-tron by year-end. Almost all manufacturers introduce hybrids before full-electric models.


Ford debuts hot wagon

Ford has revealed its all-new Focus ST in wagon body style. Two variants will be available: a 280hp 2.3-litre turbo petrol and a 190hp 2-litre turbodiesel, both initially with a six-speed manual gearbox. The Focus ST Wagon comes with an electronic limited-slip differential, rev-matching and selectable drive modes.


Mercedes-Benz B-class starts at $178,888

Mercedes-Benz has launched its new B-class in Singapore. Combining functional design with sportiness, the mini-multipurpose vehicle promises plenty of room for its compact footprint. It comes with an intelligent drive system, offering a suite of safety features and driving assistance systems, as well as conversational voice commands. The B200 Progressive is retailing at $178,888.

Christopher Tan

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 25, 2019, with the headline 'Fast Lane'. Print Edition | Subscribe