Fast Lane: Infiniti cool

The audacious Q Inspiration may well signal Infiniti's new design offensive.
The audacious Q Inspiration may well signal Infiniti's new design offensive.PHOTO: INFINITI
Nexo is Hyundai's second-generation of commercialised fuel cell electric vehicle.
Nexo is Hyundai's second-generation of commercialised fuel cell electric vehicle.PHOTO: HYUNDAI
This is a camper-van concept based on the Mercedes-Benz X-class.
This is a camper-van concept based on the Mercedes-Benz X-class.PHOTO: MERCEDES-BENZ
BMW's Spartanburg plant
BMW's Spartanburg plantPHOTO: BMW

Infiniti cool

The audacious Q Inspiration may well signal Infiniti's new design offensive. With lines which avoid classical saloon forms, the Q Inspiration is conceptualised for new powertrains. The bold concept - which will take Infiniti's fight with Lexus to another level - will be revealed at the Detroit Motor Show on Monday.


Volkswagen's production record

Despite Dieselgate, Volkswagen produced more than six million vehicles last year, setting a new record. The largest model offensive was led by the Jetta, Golf, Santana, Passat and Polo, which are part of a 60-model lineup.


Taking it to the Nexo level

Nexo is Hyundai's second-generation of commercialised fuel cell electric vehicle, which will be available in select markets around the world, starting early this year. Improving upon the acclaimed ix35 FCEV, the Nexo has an estimated driving range of 800km - nearly 40 per cent longer than its predecessor's. Driving performance has also improved.


Hyundai ties up with Aurora on self-driving

Hyundai Motor and Aurora, a leader in autonomous vehicle technology, have entered a strategic partnership to bring self-driving Hyundais to market by 2021. This partnership will incorporate Aurora's self-driving technology into Hyundai vehicles, starting with models custom-developed and launched in test programmes and pilot cities. Over the longer term, Hyundai and Aurora will work to commercialise Level 4 self-driving vehicles worldwide.


Camping with Mercedes-Benz

This is a camper-van concept based on the Mercedes-Benz X-class, which is based on the Nissan Navara. The concept has a demountable cabin with 150cm-wide sleeping quarters, headroom of almost 2m, a kitchen with a three-burner gas stove and three cosy seats. The latter can be converted into a second bed. With its large, fold-away wash basin and swivelling toilet unit, the integrated bathroom has room for a shower.


Boot shelf inspired by beehives

Ford has applied the engineering of beehives to its EcoSport's parcel shelf. The result is a lightweight boot shelf that can support 100 times its own weight - a strength-to-weight ratio higher than steel. Developed for the EcoSport SUV and designed to conceal valuables that may be fragile, the adjustable shelf - weighing less than 3kg - can support loads of more than 300kg.


BMW's advanced traction control

BMW will adopt an advanced traction control it uses for the 184hp/270Nm i3s for other models. At the heart of the system - 50 times faster than the average stability aid - is a computing process that is calculated directly in the powertrain instead of in a remote unit requiring long signal paths.


BMW's US plant rolling out X7

BMW's Spartanburg plant in the United States is ramping up for the X7. Work on the first pre-production units of the new SUV has commenced. The model will be launched at the end of this year. Together with the X7, a total of five BMW X models will be exported from Spartanburg. The pre-production model is fitted with camouflage wrap while still at the plant.

Christopher Tan

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 13, 2018, with the headline 'Fast Lane'. Print Edition | Subscribe