Fast Lane: VW acts to contain diesel scandal fallout

BMW has unveiled a "compact sedan concept" that is deemed as its first front- wheel-driven saloon model.
BMW has unveiled a "compact sedan concept" that is deemed as its first front- wheel-driven saloon model.PHOTOS: BMW, SSANGYONG, VOLKSWAGEN

VW acts to contain diesel scandal fallout

Volkswagen has come up with cost-efficient ways to address its diesel debacle.

For its 1.6-litre diesels, VW will install a "flow transformer" in the intake. This is a mesh that "calms the swirled air flow in front of the air mass sensor and will thus decisively improve the measuring accuracy of the air mass sensor".

The air mass sensor determines the current air mass throughput, which is a very important parameter for the engine management for an optimum combustion process.

In addition, the engine software will be modified. For the 2-litre diesels, such as the VW Touran 2.0 TDI, VW will just have to modify the engine software.

The carmaker says simulations have shown that these steps will lower the emission levels of the cars, but will not affect performance or fuel efficiency.

However, it said the results cannot be confirmed until real-life measurements are made after the rectifications.

BMW's "compact sedan"

BMW has unveiled a "compact sedan concept" that is deemed as its first front- wheel-driven saloon model.

Possibly the next 1-series four-door, the car will be launched next year and will have a range of three- and four-cylinder engines driving the front axle.

BMW Scrambler for purists

BMW's new R nineT Scrambler is a nostalgic machine made for the purist - "reduced to the essentials", but imbued with the "technology and quality of a BMW".

It is powered by an air- cooled 1,170cc Boxer engine that makes 110bhp and 116Nm.

Ford using 3D printing

Ford Motor has adopted 3D print technology in vehicle production, allowing prototypes to be made in hours instead of weeks.

The new Ford GT supercar will have parts that are 3D-printed - including the steering wheel, paddle shifts and door controls. The new Mondeo Vignale's grille was also 3D-printed.

Put on a holographic headset to view a Volvo

Volvo Cars has partnered Microsoft to demonstrate what it might be like for car buyers to use the tech company's HoloLens "mixed reality" headset and get a better look at their next car, inside and out. Shoppers no longer have to go through brochures and can have a detailed visualisation of any car by just putting on the holographic headset.

Toyota Supra in the works

Toyota's highly anticipated new Supra coupe is confirmed for production. To be built in collaboration with BMW, the new car will boast a 4-litre bi-turbo V8 and could be here by late 2017.

Toyota's Lexus division will also launch a new crossover one size smaller than the NX. Its next LS flagship sedan will be sleek and sporty instead of boxy and chunky. Its cabin will incorporate some features first seen in the LFA supercar.

A production version of the LF-LC concept coupe will also be ready within the next two years, boasting a 5-litre V10 engine as well as a hybrid variant.

Meet Ssangyong's Turismo

Ssangyong has unveiled its answer to the Toyota Alphard. The Turismo is a huge seven- seater with a 3,000mm wheelbase (same as the Alphard's). It is powered by a new 2.2-litre Euro 6 turbodiesel that is paired with a seven-speed Mercedes-Benz autobox. There is also an all- wheel-drive variant.

There is no confirmation on the car's arrival here, but Ssangyong will have a long-wheelbase version of the Tivoli crossover that is headed here next year.

Mercedes-AMG to make more V12s

Mercedes-AMG will start building its V12s in a new location in Mannheim, Germany, from February.

Workers who currently assemble V12s at the AMG headquarters in Affalterbach will be shifted to the eight- cylinder engine lines.

The move is said to cater to rising demand for V12s, despite the clamour for greener vehicles, and the Affalterbach facility cannot be expanded at the moment.

Christopher Tan

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 28, 2015, with the headline 'FastLane'. Subscribe