A simple yet ingenious idea – Jaguar Land Rovers Bike Sense

Some may be thinking that this will be a big rant on how cyclists and motorists don’t get along, well you’re wrong…because I have already done one of them! – http://driversedition.com/index.php/i-shall-start-with-a-rant/

Jaguar Land Rover have just released information on their Bike Sense technology. It will use colours, sounds and touch within the car to alert drivers of bikes and motorcyclists approaching from the rear. This idea is so simple yet brilliantly effective. It’s long overdue, especially with the increase of cyclists on the roads over the last few years. Cyclists are vulnerable road users on Irish roads and over the years motorists and cyclists have had their differences. In 2013, 190 fatalities on Irish roads. Of this 190; 27 motorcyclists and 5 cyclists were killed.

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Bike Sense will not just alert drivers with a generic alarm sound but it will also use colours and touch to let drivers know exactly what is approaching, whether it be a cyclist or a motorcyclist. It will identify whether the cyclist is coming up the inside or overtaking and the top of the seat will tap the driver on the shoulder. This will get the driver to look in that direction. As the cyclist gets closer, LED lights will illuminate the window sills, dashboard and window pillars in either amber or red.

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Bike Sense will also identify hazards such as pedestrians or cyclists obscured by a parked car, for example. If the driver ignores the warnings and continues to accelerate, the pedal will start to vibrate and feel stiff. This will aim to disencourage the driver from driving on until the obstacle is out of harms way. The door handle will also illuminate and vibrate if the user is about to open the door onto an oncoming cyclist.

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Now, if your thinking that your luxurious Jag or Land Rover will turn into a dodgy nightclub with lights flashing here and there when on a busy urban street, it won’t. When on a street with alot of obstacles, Bike Sense will prioritise the closest and most vulnerable one and inform you about it. This way, drivers will not get distracted.

The Tivoli is launched – Ssangyongs answer to the Crossover

Finally we have heard news on the Ssangyong Tivoli, a Korean Crossover with an Italian name. The Tivoli is due to launch at the Geneva Motor Show in March and will go on sale in Ireland in May/June.

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Exterior

Ssangyong haven’t changed much of the design from the XIV concept that has been knocking around for the past few months which is a good thing as it shows a different side to Ssangyong. A more stylish side than the Rodius and Rexton.  Ssangyong says: “The Tivoli features a dynamic, urban look with a contemporary silhouette, and embodies the rhythmical motion of SsangYong’s design language, ‘Nature-born 3 Motion’ – Rhythmical, Dynamic and Dignified.”

In short, the Tivolis lines are clean and dignified with a urban touch to them. The front grill, as Ssangyong states, resembles a birds wings in flight. It hopes to draw in consumers in the market for their first Crossover. Customers will have the option of either 16 inch or 18 inch wheels.

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Interior

The interior looks fairly similar to Ssangyongs current interior design. The Tivoli will feature a leather heated D shaped sports steering wheel. An infotainment system will be in place which will allow users to connect their phone to the 7 inch screen. A rear view camera can also be accessed through this. Customers can choose from 6 different background colours for the dash, blue, sky-blue, red, yellow, white and black. Three interior trim colours will be available; black, beige and, for a sportier ambiance, red. 423 litres of boot space will be on hand with the option of folding the second row of seats.

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Performance

The Tivoli will be powered by either a 1.6 petrol or 1.6 diesel engine. The petrol engine is the newly developed e-XGi160 which will have 126bhp and 157nm of torque. A timing chain has been introduced to reduce engine noise and strengthening on the cylinder head to increase durability.

A 6-speed manual and automatic gearbox is available in the Tivoli. Hallelujah!! The updated Rexton, introduced last year, was only fitted with a 5 speed box which let it down. Lets hope the Tivoli will make use of this upgraded gearbox.

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Three steering modes will be available to drivers; Normal, Comfort and Sport. An electronic power steering system will allow drivers to tackle motorway and city driving as well as parking with ease.

So that’s that for the Tivoli. I will see this in the flesh at Geneva so lets hope it does not disappoint. Going by the XIV concept, which I was rather intrigued by, it will not.

Jaguar F-Pace – Jags first SUV

Jag have announced their first SUV at the Detroit Auto Show, the F-Pace. It will go on sale in 2016. It is the outcome of the C-X17 Concept designed by Ian Callum, Jaguars head of design. Callum says: “We received such an overwhelmingly positive response to the C-X17 concept car last year that we just had to make it a reality”.

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The F-Pace is inspired by the F-Type so shows a good balance between performance and practicality. The exterior design shows a decent resemblance to the current Jag line-up. Jag says: “The F-PACE is our family sports car”.

The F-Pace will rival the likes of the Porsche Macan. No engines have yet been mentioned but will most likely have a petrol along with the predicted diesel (a 2.0 litre most likely, how exciting…). Lets just pray they have a hot version to compete against the Macan Turbo.

Andy Goss, Jaguar Land Rovers global sales director, said: “In 2015 we will celebrate Jaguar’s 80th year. We have started it by announcing our first performance crossover which we consider to be the ultimate practical sports car – a car that builds on the marque’s founding ideals of Grace, Pace and Space to become one of the most innovative Jaguars we’ve ever developed. The F-PACE has now begun its engineering and development testing programme ahead of the new model going on sale in 2016.”

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So what are your thoughts? Here at Drivers Edition we like it very much. Will it hold up against  the Macan? Roll on 2016

DE

Seat Leon ST Cupra

Seat Cupra is enough to get your attention but to add to the excitement, an estate model? Yes on so many levels. Seat have announced that it will be adding another car to the Cupra family, the Seat Leon ST Cupra. Sounds tempting already and I haven’t even gotten to the numbers yet.

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Numbers

Ireland will be given one engine option, the 2.0 litre turbo charged petrol engine. This is equipped with 350Nm of torque and 280bhp. Two transmissions will be available, the  six speed manual transmission and the six speed dual clutch automatic transmission (DSG). It will take 6 seconds to get from 0-100km/h with the DSG and 6.1 with the manual box.
Claimed fuel consumption is just 6.6litres/100km with the DSG and 6.7litres/100km with the manual. CO2 figures are coming in at between 154g/km with the DSG and 157g/km with the manual. This translates as €390 and €570 respectively  a year to tax.

Seat also have an optional performance pack which will give the driver larger Brembo brake calipers and special rims and tyres.

No prices have been mentioned yet but will be announced closer to launch at the Geneva Motor Show in March.