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Rimac Nevera completes final winter tests ahead of the first customer deliveries

Rimac Nevera completes final winter tests ahead of the first customer deliveries

The Rimac Nevera has completed two intensive weeks of winter testing at Pirelli’s Sottozero Centre near the Arctic Circle in Sweden.

With daytime temperatures unusually warm, the Rimac team spent the time testing at night when temperatures were at their most extreme, fine-tuning systems like the ABS, ESP and torque-vectoring ahead of the delivery of the first production cars.

Having already undergone years of simulation and testing, the 1,914hp all-electric Rimac Nevera has already passed USA and EU homologation tests and is due to be delivered to customers throughout the world within the next couple of months. But to ensure every control system functions perfectly in all conditions, the Rimac team headed to Sweden to validate results they had previously achieved on the road and in climatic chambers.

It also provided an ideal opportunity to test out the Nevera on its recommended winter tires – Pirelli P Zero Winter. The tire is distinguished by a specific marking on the sidewall that testifies to the joint development work carried out by Pirelli in partnership with Rimac. The Nevera’s standard ‘summer’ tires are Michelin Pilot Sport 4S.

Miroslav Zrnčević, Bugatti Rimac Chief Test and Development Driver, said: “Testing on a low grip surface like this allows us to make consistent and accurate observations on how our systems are performing in low temperatures. Things happen much more slowly than they would do on asphalt, and we have nice, even, smooth handling tracks so we know the data we get isn’t affected by surface imperfections or temperature swings. After these two weeks of testing, we’re happy to see exactly the results we wanted to achieve. “

Mate Rimac, CEO of the Rimac Group, said: “For us, this cold weather testing process was an opportunity to put the final 0.1% of polish on the Nevera, ensuring it’s perfect as soon as our owners begin to receive them in just a couple of months. Even after two weeks spent at temperatures of about -15°C (5°F), and a fairly demanding testing regime, our validation prototype performed at 100% throughout, so we know that all our core systems can perform reliably even in extreme conditions.

“What we also wanted to develop was a car that could be driven and enjoyed equally by someone who isn’t the most experienced driver right up to a seasoned racer. Finding that balance of creating a rewarding, but safe, drive in a 1,914hp car with four independent electric motors while also building a chassis that delivers delicate on-the-edge adjustability has been our goal from day one, and as our final stages of testing come to close, I can confidently say that’s exactly what we’ve achieved with Nevera.”

Designed, engineered, and built in-house at Rimac Automobili, the Nevera is limited to just 150 units. Made possible by its 120 kWh, 6960-cell battery delivering 1914 hp and 2360 Nm of torque, Nevera achieves a top speed of 258 mph (412 km/h), a 0-62 mph (100 km/h) time of 1.85 seconds, and a 0-100 mph (161 km/h) time of 4.3 seconds. It has been independently verified as the fastest accelerating production car in the world.

About Rimac
The Rimac Group, led by CEO Mate Rimac, is majority shareholder of Bugatti Rimac and the sole stakeholder of Rimac Technology. The Group brings together the most advanced hypercars in the world with a globally renowned team developing high performance electrification, autonomous and software solutions for the world’s largest OEMs.  Rimac is based on the outskirts of Zagreb, Croatia, with locations around Europe, and currently employs more than 1,300 people. From 2023, the Rimac Group will be headquartered at a new state-of-the-art 200,000 m2 Rimac Campus, large enough to accommodate over 2,500 people.

ŠKODA adds sporting edge to FABIA range with UK introduction of new Monte Carlo

ŠKODA adds sporting edge to FABIA range with UK introduction of new Monte Carlo

  • New FABIA Monte Carlo available to order now priced from £20,925 OTR
  • Unique sports design package inside and out
  • High equipment levels including virtual cockpit display, sports seats and climate control
  • Three engine and gearbox combinations with power outputs of 110PS and 150PS

ŠKODA has announced pricing and final specifications for the latest addition to the new FABIA family – the Monte Carlo.

Combining sporty design, high equipment levels and impressive practicality, the new range-topping FABIA Monte Carlo starts from £20,925 OTR.

Since its introduction to the ŠKODA range in 2011, the FABIA Monte Carlo has become a firm favourite with British buyers. Originally created to celebrate the brand’s successes at the Monte Carlo Rally and the ŠKODA Popular Monte Carlo from 1936, the Monte Carlo nameplate has become a permanent fixture in the line-up for more than a decade.

The latest version, which is now available to order, builds on the strength of its predecessors with a fully-loaded specification and a bespoke design package. The Monte Carlo has the largest wheels of any FABIA in the current range with 17-inch Procyon black painted diamond cut alloy wheels filling the arches. The sporting flagship of the range also features new sports bumpers, along with door mirrors and radiator grille finished in gloss black. Unique Monte Carlo badging and black ŠKODA lettering for the tailgate complete the exterior design package.

Inside the Monte Carlo adds height adjustable sports front seats trimmed with black fabric and artificial leather, a three-spoke leather multifunction steering wheel and red metallic upper decorative trim. Monte Carlo drivers also benefit from a black headlining, carbon effect lower decorative trim with white stitching and carbon effect door and side trim panels. An ambient lighting package, and aluminium pedals are also fitted as standard to the Monte Carlo model.

In terms of technology, the FABIA Monte Carlo comes equipped with a virtual cockpit with 10.25-inch colour display, Bolero radio 8-inch display, Bluetooth and SmartLink for seamless connection to Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. KESSY keyless engine start/stop and dual zone air conditioning with Climatronic electronic control are also included as part of the generous standard specification.

The FABIA Monte Carlo is available with three petrol engine and gearbox combinations. The line-up starts with a 1.0 TSI model that generates 110PS and is offered with a six-speed manual gearbox. Customers can also specify the same engine with a seven-speed DSG, or opt for a higher output 1.5 TSI unit with150PS and seven-speed DSG.

Prices for the FABIA Monte Carlo range from £20,925 OTR for the 1.0 TSI 110PS model up to £23,765 OTR for the 1.5 TSI 150PS DSG version. Order books are open now.

FABIA MONTE CARLO
Engine OTR
1.0 TSI 110 PS 6G Manual£20,925
1.0 TSI 110 PS DSG£21,965
1.5 TSI 150 PS DSG£23,765

For more information, images and technical data relating to the full ŠKODA range, please visit www.skodamedia.com

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles launches ‘mobile home in a box’

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles launches ‘mobile home in a box’

  • Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles launches range of essential camping accessories as UK holidays soar
  • Modular camping unit provides kitchen area, bed, water supply, and storage space
  • Add-ons are compatible with Volkswagen Caravelle, California Beach Tour or Caddy
  • Unit can be ordered via local Van Centres with the range starting from £495 (including VAT)

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles has launched a range of mini-mobile camping units offering a kitchen area, bed, water supply, and storage space to give owners complete flexibility.

The ‘mobile home in a box’ is a range of modular units that fit into existing luggage compartments and provide travel essentials. The kitchen can be ready in a few seconds and the bed unfolds in a single movement making life easy out on the road.

The demand for camping equipment has grown in the past year with an influx of Brits holidaying at home due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The trend is expected to continue, with 52 per cent of people saying they intend to take their holidays in the UK this year*.

The range-topping, multi-purpose BusBox, priced at £3,340, is compatible with the Volkswagen Caravelle T5/T6/T6.1 and includes a bed, mattress, kitchen area (with space for two-burner stove), extendable storage area, and water supply.

For Caravelle and California Beach Tour owners, the BusBox is available without mattress, priced at £2,555. The KombiBox, which can be installed into the Caddy in minutes, offers bed, kitchen area, water supply, and cargo space, and is priced at £2,760. A folding comfort mattress is also available as a standalone accessory, priced at £495.

The products are the latest addition to Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles’ complete range of camping options, from the compact Caddy to the iconic California, and the range-topping Grand California.

James Allitt, Head of Aftersales at Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, said: “Our new camping accessory range makes travel more convenient for customers by combining all travel essentials, from utilities to water supply, in a smartly designed, comfortable, and compact space. Developing accessories that make our customers’ lives easier is a high priority at Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, which is why our one-stop-shop mobile home in a box is a great solution for those planning a camping holiday.”

For more details on Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles’ camping module visit your local Van Centre or visit our website for the Caravelle, California Beach Tour and Caddy variations:

If you would like to learn more about the latest Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles range, then please visit: www.volkswagen-vans.co.uk.

6 forgotten Lamborghinis

6 forgotten Lamborghinis

Not everything was a V12 with scissor doors

Presumably like many of you, I found myself watching Doug Demuro’s video of the Lamborghini Jalpa a number of moons ago. It made me think that despite Lamborghini being a desirable and celebrated brand in the modern age, if you were to show some of their past models to keen petrolheads, they might not be able to identify what they are.

Whereas most could tell you what a Huracan Performante or some latest edition of the Aventador is, some Lamborghinis did and still fall under the radar.

That’s what this – and some upcoming articles covering different marques – celebrates. The forgotten that were manufactured by the famous.

1. Islero

Image: Lamborghini

Lamborghini’s first production car was the 350GT in 1963 which was followed-up a few years by the 400GT. During the 400’s lifespan, the Miura unearthed itself to the world and it’s fair to say, it caused quite a stir.

So much of a stir in fact, that the 400GT’s successor was seemingly left only for the aficionados: the Islero.

Just 225 examples of the 2+2 grand tourer were ever made and came equipped with the Bizzarrini 3.9 litre V12 churning out 325bhp in ‘standard’ trim or 350bhp in the Islero S. The top speed was over 160mph and it could reach 60mph in just over six seconds. It really stood in the shadow of its sleeker brother, the Espada, to which over 1200 examples of that were produced.

To give you an idea of how rare the Islero is: its production run only makes for 1/3 of all Miuras!

2. Urraco

Image: Lamborghini

This was Lamborghini’s answer to Ferrari’s Dino as a more compact, entry-level model to the brand. But unlike the car which Enzo named his son after, the little bull didn’t fare quite as successfully.

While nearly 4,000 examples of the Dino 206/246 GT were produced as well as more of the 308 GT4s, the Urraco could only be shifted 791 times – which made it clear that the Lamborghini brand wasn’t as desirable as Ferrari.

The Urraco had three engines on offer in the form of a 2.0 litre, 2.5 and 3.0 litre V8s and in the top sped P300 form, kicked out 250hp which was on par with Ferrari’s own 3.0 litre V8 of the time. It also looked rather gorgeous and is regarded as one of Gandini’s most notable work… behind the Miura and Countach of course.

3. Jarama

Image: Lamborghini

The Jarama succeeded the Islero in 1970 and represented a more up-to-date take on what Lamborghini could do with their traditional front-engined 2+2 car. Like the Espada which it was built alongside, it was powered by the same 3.9 litre V12 churning out 350bhp.

Just 328 examples were ever made and it confirmed to Lamborghini that it just wasn’t worth making front-engined GT cars any longer.

Also like the Espada, it was made available with Chrysler’s 3-speed automatic Torqueflite gearbox but only 150 were ever optioned with it. Perhaps more interestingly, Ferruccio Lamborghini himself favoured the Jarama as his favourite Lambo and used one for himself! He described it as a ‘perfect compromise’ between the Miura and Espada.

4. Silhouette

Image: Lamborghini

What started out as a design exercise became a full-scale production car which represented a step-up from the Urraco. It was made for three years alongside the base car and they only managed to sell 54 of them.

The Silhouette used the 3.0 litre version of the Urraco’s V8 and produced 265bhp. It was also the first Lamborghini to have a targa roof (in production form at least).

With the wide arches and body modifications, it’s fairly easy to tell a Silhouette from its weaker brother.

5. Jalpa

Image: Lamborghini

The Jalpa eventually succeeded the Urraco as Lamborghini’s entry-level car and was even based upon it like the Silhouette.

It was as 80s as it was rare with only 410 ever made, making it much rarer than it’s bigger brother, the Countach. It housed a 3.5 litre version of the Urraco’s V8 and kicked out 250bhp which was enough to rival Ferrari’s 308 and 328 models which were also produced in the Jalpa’s lifespan.

When Chrysler bought Lamborghini in the late 80s, production of the Jalpa stopped and it wasn’t replaced until the much more modern, MUCH more successful Gallardo.

6. Cheetah

People remember the LM002 as Lamborghini’s crazy off-road military-inspired thing. But before that, there was this: the prototype dubbed the Cheetah.

It was developed in contract with Mobility Technology International (MTI) which was also contracted by the U.S military to produce a new all-terrain vehicle. The Cheetah was made in San Jose, California before being sent back to Lamborghini in Italy for the final details.

It had a rear-mounted 5.9 litre Chrysler V8 with a 3-speed automatic gearbox and this combined with the 2-tonne fibreglass body made it a poor performer in the way it handled. The contract from the U.S military was eventually given to AM General who went on to create the Humvee.

The cancellation of the Cheetah project – along with financial problems at Lamborghini – also led to canning the deal with BMW to produce the M1 supercar. The story of how the German car came about requires a separate article!

Nevertheless, this was the original design and engineering process before Lamborghini eventually went on to create the V12-powered LM002.

What is your favourite Lambo?

The Countach : First of its kind

The Countach : First of its kind

Not a history lesson but here are some facts and figures that I have learned about the Countach.

Countach was one of those models from Lamborghini that helped the brand survive in its crisis. During the 1970s, the Italian supercar cum tractor manufacturer was struggling with financial difficulties and one of the main reasons was the oil crisis of the 70s. It was still running under the control of its legendary founder Ferruccio Lamborghini and the Countach is classified among the last few revolutionary products from the bull garage which was developed before his retirement. Lamborghini wanted to create a successor of the legendary Miura which will offer more comfort, performance and will have a beautiful appearance among the buyers and enthusiasts. So, the Countach came into life. This year, the Countach turns 50 as it was first unveiled on March 11, 1971, at the Geneva Motor Show. So let’s take a look at a few interesting facts about this striking Lambo from the 70s.

The Countach LP500 at the Geneva Motor Show in 1971 | Photo via: design-is-fine.org

It is not named after a Bull

Yes, it was one of the only five(if I’m correct) Lamborghini models that were not named after a bull. There’s an interesting story behind the nomenclature of this beauty. Let’s have the words from the designer Marcello Gandini himself-

“When we were working at night, to keep our morale up, there was a jousting spirit, so I said we could call it Countach, just as a joke…”

Marcello Gandini

“When we made cars for the car shows, we worked at night and we were all tired, so we would joke around to keep our morale up. There was a profiler working with us who made the locks. He was two meters tall with two enormous hands, and he performed all the little jobs. He spoke almost only Piedmontese, didn’t even speak Italian. Piedmontese is much different from Italian and sounds like French. One of his most frequent exclamations was ‘countach’, which literally means plague, contagion, and is actually used more to express amazement or even admiration, like ‘goodness’. He had this habit. When we were working at night, to keep our morale up, there was a jousting spirit, so I said we could call it Countach, just as a joke, to say an exaggerated quip, without any conviction. There nearby was Bob Wallace, who assembled the mechanics – we always made the cars operational. At that time you could even roll into the car shows with the car running, which was marvellous. So jokingly I asked Bob Wallace how it sounded to an Anglo-Saxon ear. He said it in his own way, strangely. It worked. We immediately came up with the writing and stuck it on. But maybe the real suggestion was the idea of one of my co-workers, a young man who said let’s call it that. That is how the name was coined….”

One supercar, several engines

The whole Countach series used V12s that were longitudinally positioned which is why they were named with “LP” which indicates “Longitudinale Posteriore” in Italian. It was a move from the usual transversely mounted V12s from their previous flagship supercar Miura as longitudinally-mounted engines had proved to offer better usability and handling than the transversal ones. Till date, most supercars and performance cars use longitudinally-mounted engines for the same reason.

Countach LP500 | Photo via: Lamborghini

In its lifetime it met with a lot of new engines that would power it to reach the 300 kph mark(186mph). The first engine that it had was a 4.97-litre naturally aspirated V12 which was used in the first appearance of the Countach in 1971. But, the road tests showed that it was too immature and delicate for the car. So, Lamborghini decided to use a 3.93-litre engine instead, which will make its way to the first production-spec Countach called LP400.

About 4 years later the LP 400S was introduced which kept using the same engine. And after passing another 4 years, Lamborghini came up with the LP500 S which had a new 4.75-litre engine, that produced around 20 horses more than its predecessor.

As three more years passed, in 1985 Lamborghini introduced the Countach 5000 QV. QV means Quattrovalvole(obviously Italian) which translates to Four valves, as the engine now had four valves in each cylinder. And guess what? The engine got bigger in size too. They leapt into a 5.2-litre engine and the power figure increased from 370 hp to almost 450 hp in a matter of a few years. Plus, in the latter days, some of these engines came with an electronic fuel injection system too.

These engines powered the Countach for nearly two decades. Till now we only talked about naturally aspirated engines, have you ever dreamt about having a twin-turbocharged V12 in your Lambo? Sounds very outrageous, doesn’t it?

Countach 5000 QV | Photo via : The Car Shrink

Well, the outrageous dreams of yours and mine do exist in the real world. Two of the Countachs were turbocharged and one of them produced power figures around 750 horsepowers in the early 1980s, would you believe that? Honestly, it was really hard for me to believe because it’s a power figure that we see in recent supercars (please keep the EVs and hybrids out of the equation). Even the current flagship product of Lamborghini, the Aventador is producing about 780 hp with a 6.5-litre engine. So 40 years ago there was a Lamborghini that produced power figures that were pretty similar to today’s ones. And it has kept me surprised still now.

Countach LP500 Turbo S Prototype | Photo via: wallup.net

But the question is- why were only two of them made like that?

Actually, the Swiss distributor of Lamborghini at that time turned an LP400S and an LP500S into two twin-turbocharged unique versions of Countach of which, the LP500 Turbo S was the one that was showcased in the 1984 Geneva motor show. It is to be noted that Lambo doesn’t usually lean on turbocharging their supercars to increase power figures like others. They are known for their naturally aspirated V12 perfections. So this twin-turbo Lambo duo is a kind of exception that you’d barely expect from the bull garage.

Leaving curves and going edgy

I would like to share my personal feelings about the designs of cars while talking about the design revolution of Lamborghini. In Donut Media’s words, the Countach looked like a “rocket ship”. There were several vents and scoops and a vast amount of angles. Besides that, it was the first Lamborghini to come up with the scissor doors; to be precise, it was the first production car to come up with scissor doors so a lot of people call it Lambo doors even if they see it fitted in a McLaren. It was very edgy and felt like it was from the future. Even I still feel like it is something from the 90s.

Now, I am not really a fan of super-edgy, heavily striking designs. Alongside that, I am very much biased towards the four-door coupe type vehicle designs. In simple words, I like the RS5 coupe or the RS6 Avant more than the R8. Maybe I am more of a fan of well-proportioned car designs. This is why, from my perspective, compact supercars with striking designs don’t really feel great. So a lot of times I feel like the Countach could have been a bit curvier, and wavy like the Miura. Sometimes I feel like the Countach is too straightforward.

But hey, it was just the start of a new era of designing. It doesn’t matter whether it was beautiful to me or not. What matters is that it was a revolutionary design that was way ahead of its time. A lot of owners have acknowledged that it is not really made for being practical and comfortable, there are loads of issues about this elementary design but whenever you are looking back at the car or driving it, you are driving something that gave birth to the current generation of Lamborghinis. Honestly, if I am given the option of choosing a Lamborghini over its design beauty, I will probably choose any other car but the Countach. But if there are no design criteria then the Countach would be my most prior choice as it stands as a revolution.

So those above were three of the most interesting facts that I found about the Lamborghini Countach. As a lot of car guys, I do love studying cars and talking about them. Let me know what else car do you want me to study in the comments below and I’ll write a summary about that.

You may follow me if you like the article, which kind of works as an inspiration as well as an incentive to write more for you and for me.

I always welcome everyone to advise me about my writing.

Thank you for your time.

Europe to lead the charge to electrification under Nissan Ambition 2030 vision

Europe to lead the charge to electrification under Nissan Ambition 2030 vision

  • Europe at the forefront of Nissan’s’ new long-term strategy to accelerate electrification
  • CHILL OUT Concept unveiled, previewing future EV Crossover to be built in the UK
  • New battery refurbishing facility planned for Europe

Nissan Ambition 2030, the company’s new long-term vision for empowering mobility and beyond, responds to critical environmental, societal and customer needs.

Nissan aims to become a truly sustainable company, driving towards a cleaner, safer, and more inclusive world.

The AMIEO region, with EV36Zero at its centre, will play a leading role in the delivery of Ambition 2030, which supports Nissan’s goal to be carbon neutral across the life cycle of its products by fiscal year 2050, including:

  • By the end of fiscal year 2023, Nissan will offer an electrified option on all of its passenger cars in Europe, with more than 75% of sales to be electrified by fiscal year 2026.
  • Unveiled today, the new generation crossover concept CHILL OUT, as announced in Sunderland this July as part of the EV36Zero project, utilises the Alliance CMF-EV platform and offers breath-taking acceleration and an unparalleled feeling of control. It has a sleek and modern design, co-existing beauty, and the best aerodynamic performance, energizing driving, advanced safety technologies and a productive and comfortable interior space.
  • The company intends to expand its battery refurbishing facilities beyond Japan with a new location in Europe during fiscal year 2022. Nissan’s refurbishing infrastructure will support a circular economy in energy management, and the company aims to fully commercialise its vehicle-to-everything and home battery systems in the mid-2020s.
  • Building on the success of the Nissan LEAF, the world’s first mass-market EV, Nissan will soon introduce its innovative e-POWER technology to the all-new Qashqai and X-Trail. With the imminent arrival of the 100% electric crossover Ariya, as well as the future full electric Townstar van, a fully electrified European lineup is within sight.

“For the past decade the Europe region has been leading the switch to electrification. Our vision for the next decade is to accelerate this further, with new products and technologies that will transform the driving experience for Nissan customers,” said Guillaume Cartier, Chairperson for the Nissan AMIEO Region.

“Not only will we offer an electrified version for all of our passenger models in Europe, our 360-degree vision for sustainable mobility will bring 100% renewable electricity to our EV Hub in the UK, and will see new battery refurbishment facilities introduced in Europe.

“Spearheading the journey to full electrification and carbon neutrality, our teams and products in Europe will also inform and support our plans for electrified vehicles in the rest of the AMIEO region and other markets globally.”

With this vision, Nissan wants to deliver strategic value by empowering journeys offering confident, exciting, and more integrated experiences to customers, and through collaborations, empower society to build a smart ecosystem with integrated mobility.

Earlier this year, Nissan launched EV36Zero, the world’s first fully integrated EV manufacturing ecosystem, connecting mobility and energy management to help the company realise its carbon neutrality goals. Centred around the company’s plant in Sunderland, UK, the new hub incorporates future EV production, a new gigafactory and 100% renewable electricity, representing an initial £1bn investment.

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