Aerodynamic Performance – Aventador S



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By Shereen Shabanam

With the hills of Tuscany as the backdrop and in the company of fellow supercar motoring enthusiasts from around the globe over a few days, I recently tested the new Lamborghini Aventador S which has a new aerodynamic design, redeveloped suspension, increased power and new driving dynamics.

The ‘S’ is the suffix of previous enhanced Lamborghini models and defines a new benchmark for the V12 Lamborghini and indicates the new Aventador generation, redesigned to achieve maximum aerodynamic efficiency while accenting the Aventador’s complex, muscular dynamism.

According to Automobili Lamborghini Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Stefano Domenicali, the Aventador S has a visionary design, cutting-edge technology with driving dynamics that elevates the concept of super sports cars to a new level.

A more aggressive nose and longer front splitter redirect airflow for better aerodynamic efficiency, improved engine cooling and increased cooling to the radiators. Two air ducts in the side of the front bumper reduce aerodynamic interference from the front tires and optimize wake flow to the rear radiator.

The rear of the Aventador S is dominated by a black diffuser, available on request in carbon fiber, characterized by a number of vertical fins that amplify the airflow effects, reduce drag through pressure recovery and generate downforce. Three single exhaust outlets exit through the rear bumper.

During the drive, we learnt how the rear wing, movable in three positions depending on speed and drive select mode, optimizes the car’s improved overall balance, working with vortex generators created in the front and rear of the chassis’ underside that maximize air flow as well as assist in brake cooling.

With the Aventador S design, the front downforce has been improved by more than 130% over the previous Aventador coupé. When the wing is in its optimum position the overall efficiency at high downforce is improved by over 50%, and in low drag by more than 400% compared to the previous model.

The Aventador S is redeveloped around a ‘total control concept’ to provide a superior drive, ride and performance; every aspect of the car’s suspension and electronic control systems has been advanced, with the goal of particularly enhanced control and driving emotion.

Also interesting is the smart Lamborghini Dinamica Veicolo Attiva (LDVA) control unit that manage these systems in the car. LDVA is the new brain of the car, which receives real time and precise information on body motion via input from all sensors of the car and defines the best set-up of all active systems that guarantee the best vehicle dynamics in each situation.

The Aventador S is more agile with a reduced turning radius, ensuring higher performance in curves and making it easy to maneuver in town and at low speeds. On the tracks, I tried all four different driving modes: STRADA, SPORT, CORSA and the new EGO mode, which influence the behavior of the traction (engine, gearbox, 4WD), steering (LRS, LDS, Servotronic) and suspension (LMS).

STRADA stands for maximum comfort and daily use. SPORT provides a sporty, rear-wheel drive feel and CORSA is suitable for maximum track performance.

EGO is the new driving mode option. This provides several additional and individual set-up profiles, customizable by the driver’s preferred criteria for traction, steering and suspension within the STRADA, SPORT and CORSA settings.

In STRADA, the progressive damping is smoothed for better comfort and stability on rough roads. Torque is split 40/60 to the front and rear as standard: safe and stable with maximum adhesion, the car is easily driven and controlled.

In SPORT mode, the stabilizing effect of the Lamborghini Rear-wheel Steering allows up to 90% torque to the rear wheels for maximum sportiness and driving fun on curving roads. Driving precision and driver feedback is improved, while maintaining safety and without compromising on comfort.

While I drove mainly in SPORT mode, I tried the CORSA as well experiencing less intrusive dynamic and traction control intervention while maintaining driving precision and traction. In this mode, high levels of damping force maximize driver feeling and feedback from driver inputs including steering, braking and throttle.

Counter-phase steering is enhanced in high-performance situations and torque is balanced to both axles, with a maximum 20/80 split to front and rear for more neutral behavior and to maximize track-oriented performance.

The Lamborghini Aventador’s naturally aspirated twelve cylinder, 6.5 liter engine outputs an additional 40 hp over its predecessor, to a maximum 740 hp, with a 690 Nm of torque at 5,500 rpm. Acceleration from 0-100 km/h is reached in 2.9 seconds, with a top speed of 350 km/h. Transmission is provided by Lamborghini’s lightweight Independent Shifting Rod (ISR) 7-speed shifting system, providing robotized gear shifts in up to 50 milliseconds.

The Aventador S comes with new, specially developed set of Pirelli P Zero tires. Designed to optimize steering, traction, lane changes and braking efficiency, the tires are specifically designed to respond to the dynamic behavior induced by the Lamborghini Rear-wheel Steering, ensuring handling consistency and driver feedback.

With improved force generation from both front and rear tires, the Pirelli P Zero tires provide a higher lateral acceleration and reduce understeer characteristics. Carbon ceramic brakes are standard equipment for the Aventador S.

The training at the Mugello Circuit with the Aventador S enthralled the most seasoned supercar drivers and owners and the thrills on the tracks proved once again the brand’s superior road power that exudes only from a Lamborghini.

All Terrain Capability – Nissan Patrol


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By Shereen Shabnam

Nissan Patrol has an unparalleled heritage with a reputation linked with power, reliability and strength. Building on history that goes back to 1951 when the first Patrol rolled off the production line, the original 60-series Patrol was initially used as a military vehicle with its all-terrain capability.

The last 65 years has seen the evolution of the Patrol to one of the most iconic off-road vehicles offering performance, luxury and off-road capabilities. Equipped with the latest technologies under Nissan Intelligent Mobility, the new line-up comes with driving, parking and safety features.

The Nissan Patrol heritage continues to be embedded across the Middle Eastern market, with a full line-up ready to cater to a wide-array of drivers. For instance, the Nissan Patrol V8 accommodates those who want performance in an ultra-luxurious interior and a sophisticated exterior.

With a compelling driving experience on and off the road through a 400 HP engine, the Nissan Patrol V8 pushes the boundaries of the Middle Eastern urbanist and adventurer. Complemented with a deluxe interior of tan leather, wooden panel and chrome trims to convey a premium comfort, the Nissan Patrol V8 combines elegance and practicality.

There is also the region-specific, fuel-efficient, Nissan Patrol V6, designed and built for the demands of the region, pushes 275 HP and retains high levels of power and prestige of the Patrol.

With a lower ownership cost and a higher driving range, the Nissan Patrol V6 makes is ideal as an everyday family car, packaged with the capabilities of excitement and thrill as the ultimate adventure companion. Like the V8, the Patrol V6 offers incredible power and exceptional passenger and baggage space – delivering industry-leading value.

For those looking for a more bespoke and motorsports-inspired driving experience, the Nissan Patrol NISMO is their rejoice. Hand-tuned by Nissan Takumis, the Nissan Patrol NISMO offers customers a ferocious engine boosting 428 HP, fitted in a head-turning exterior encouraged by the NISMO DNA.

The interior complements the persona, with a sportier design for the leather upholstery, white and black leather seats and door panels and NISMO inspired dashboard with red stitching and tachometer.

Finally, the Nissan Patrol Super Safari, is accurately contrasted through a two-tone gold and grey color. The 280 HP SUV champion imprinted its identity within the Middle Eastern culture with a reliable and powerful engine and an iconic exterior sculpture. Its characteristics truly cater to the nostalgic Middle Eastern fans of the Patrol whilst offering the latest specifications and capabilities for the city and beyond.

Irrespective of preferences, the portfolio of Nissan Patrols offers a variety of options for consumers with an insatiable craving for desert adventures, or a reliable spacious vehicle for most memorable moments.


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Performance is the Heartbeat: Introducing the All-New Dodge Durango SRT


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For the first time ever, SRT power is now available in the Dodge Durango. The 2018 Dodge Durango SRT is powered by the potent 392-cubic-inch HEMI®V8 engine with Fuel Saver Technology that delivers 475 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 470 lb.-ft. of torque at 4,300 rpm – providing America’s best horsepower and torque ratings that make it the world’s fastest, most powerful and most capable three-row SUV in its class.

To keep the powertrain running cool and efficient in higher demand environments, a new cold-air duct provides cooler outside air into the engine. Assuring maximum performance under extreme conditions, the 2018 Dodge Durango SRT has been validated through rigorous 24-hour track durability testing – a testing standard that every SRT vehicle adheres to.

The 2018 Dodge Durango SRT provides enhanced shift quality and performance drivability, as well as optimized fuel economy through its TorqueFlite eight-speed automatic transmission. This proven transmission was specifically calibrated for the Dodge Durango SRT to optimize shift points and deliver maximum torque to all four wheels. For the ultimate driver-controlled experience, the transmission can be manually shifted using the performance-inspired steering wheel paddle controls on the exclusive SRT-lit flat-bottom steering wheel.

When placed in Sport Mode, the transmission reduces shift times by up to 50 per cent versus Auto Mode and delivers 65 per cent of the engine’s torque to the rear wheels.

Acceleration and performance handling are further enhanced when the vehicle is in Track Mode. When in Track Mode, maximum performance track driving is achieved with 160-millisecond shifts and up to 70 per cent of the engine’s torque delivered to the rear wheels for the most pronounced rear-wheel-drive experience. Durango SRT drivers will also notice a vehicle that is more responsive from mid-corner to exit.

The new driver-oriented electronic T-shifter provides the driver with intuitive gear selection and offers an Auto Stick selector gate for added control. Drive and Sport shifting can be selected with no effect on the chosen suspension, stability control and driveline torque split settings.


The 2018 Dodge Durango SRT features launch control, which mimics a professional driver’s inputs to optimize performance by bringing engine, transmission, driveline, stability control and suspension together for an optimal launch and consistent straight-line acceleration.


The new exhaust system has been tuned to offer an unmistakably deep, high-performance note that is distinctive to Dodge/SRT and provides a lasting impression. To achieve this iconic exhaust tone, engineers have replaced the rear mufflers with resonators to increase overall sound level and improve tone of the true performance 2.75-inch (69.85 mm) dual exhaust system.

Ride and Handling

The Dodge Durango SRT rides on a short- and long-arm (SLA) independent front suspension with coil springs, specially tuned Bilstein adaptive damping suspension (ADS), upper- and lower-control arms (“A” arms) and a stabilizer bar. Additional changes include 3 per cent stiffer front springs, 16 per cent stiffer rear springs and an 18 per cent stiffer rear sway bar to provide Durango SRT drivers with outstanding high-speed cornering capability.

In the rear, a specially tuned multi-link suspension design has coil spring, Bilstein ADS, aluminium lower control arm, independent upper links (tension and camber), plus a separate toe link, and a stabilizer bar.

The 120-inch (3,048 mm) wheelbase allows for outstanding stability and consistency in high-speed cornering, while a new performance-tuned AWD system helps the Durango SRT set the world-class performance marks.

The Durango SRT also features the SRT seven-mode drive system, which provides the driver the ability to precisely adjust drive settings to maximize performance or comfort. Suspension, torque distribution, shift points, stability control and engine mapping are all controlled through this system.

The seven SRT drive modes include:

  • Auto:activates automatically when starting the vehicle. Sets the suspension and steering to comfort setting and longer shift times for longer, relaxed driving conditions
  • Sport: delivers increased vehicle performance capability over Auto Mode. Tightens up suspension damping and increased steering gradient feel for improved cornering response. In addition, shift speed increases 23 per cent in 1-4 gears and electronic stability control (ESC) allows more yaw for spirited driving
  • Track:delivers maximum vehicle performance capability on smooth, dry surfaces. Tightens up to full hard suspension damping and steering gradient feel for maximum cornering response. In addition, shift speed increases 50 per cent in 1-4 gears from Auto mode and ESC allows maximum yaw
  • Snow:sets ideal configuration for driving in snow by setting transmission to use second gear (rather than first gear) during launches to minimize wheel slippage; stability control is set to Full-on and AWD is set to 50/50 distribution
  • Tow:sets ideal configuration to tow a trailer by using full stability control; AWD is set to 50/50 distribution and trailer sway control is enabled in the ESC system. In addition, the Active Noise Cancelation system is automatically engaged to reduce engine noise from the high-load towing condition
  • Valet:engine is remapped to mimic the Dodge Charger V6 engine’s torque and horsepower settings; transmission locks out access to first gear and upshifts earlier than normal; traction, steering and suspension are set to their Auto settings; steering wheel paddle shifters are disabled; ESC is enabled to Full-on and launch control is disabled
  • ECO:maximizes fuel economy with a revised shift schedule, second-gear starts and extended range of the Fuel Saver Technology

Standard five-spoke 20-inch “Goliath” wheels with a new “Black Noise” finish ride on Pirelli 295/45ZR20 Scorpion Verde all-season tyres or available Pirelli P Zero three-season tyres. Available, 20-inch forged aluminium wheels feature a new split five-spoke design also featuring the “Black Noise” finish.

Benchmark Braking

The 2018 Dodge Durango SRT delivers excellent braking performance, requiring an estimated 115 feet (35.05 m) to come to a full stop from 60 mph (97 km/h). Credit belongs to massive new Brembo high-performance six-piston (front) and four-piston (rear) calipers, and vented rotors at all four corners measuring 15 inches / 381mm (front-slotted) and 13.8 inches / 350.5mm (rear).

Aggressive, Functional and Luxurious Inside and Out

Along with its new ultimate performance capabilities, the 2018 Dodge Durango SRT provides the same combination of uncompromised utility, advanced technology and aggressive styling it is well known for.

Inside the refreshed cabin of the Durango SRT, new appointments include a hand-wrapped dashboard with live silver accent stitch, SRT flat-bottom performance steering wheel with standard paddle shift, heated and ventilated front seats with embossed SRT logos. Nappa leather with suede inserts and silver-stitched SRT logos are standard. Demonic Red Laguna leather interior with embossed SRT logos is optional.

Other luxurious touches brought to Durango for the first time in the SRT model include new Light Black Chrome centre stack, HVAC, full console and door handle bezels along with two choices of decorative bezels. Standard finish is Matte Reverse Chain, and for the first time on Durango a true carbon-fibre instrument panel and door bezels will be offered (late availability). Premium velour bound floor mats with embroidered SRT logo are standard. Adding to the impact of the hand-wrapped instrument panel, the headliner and A-pillars are available in Dynamica suede.

A newly designed 7-inch (177.8 mm), thin-film transistor (TFT) customizable digital instrument gauge cluster with 180-mph (290 km/h) speedometer allows drivers to select from a multitude of layouts and information. The class-exclusive Uconnect 8.4-inch (213.36 mm) touchscreen media centre houses the new SRT Performance Pages along with navigation, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, HD radio among other conveniences. The standard BeatsAudio premium sound system features nine speakers, subwoofer and 506-watt amplifier.

On the exterior, the 2018 Dodge Durango SRT carries a SRT hood with functional centre air-inlet ducts flanked by heat extractors that help to keep the engine bay cool by removing hot air from the engine compartment. A new front fascia and lower valence house the new cold-air duct and LED fog lamps. This new unique look will also include the SRT-inspired grille mesh pattern finish.

New integrated wheel flares and body-colour side rocker panels help provide an aggressive stance. The “392” badges flanking each fender with Bright Chrome and Metallic Grey accents differentiate the ultimate performance Durango.

At the rear, a new SRT rear body-colour lower fascia with Gloss Black accent surrounds the 4-inch dual round exhaust tips finished in Nickel Chrome and is also distinguished by new badging on the rear liftgate that denotes the new performance AWD system.

Safety and Security

The 2018 Dodge Durango SRT offers consumers more than 60 available safety and security features, with seven standard airbags, including full-length three-row side-curtain airbags, standard front-seat mounted side-thorax air bags, front-row active head restraints, standard trailer-sway control and available forward collision warning with crash mitigation, adaptive cruise control with stop, Blind-spot Monitoring (BSM) and Rear Cross Path (RCP) detection.

Manufacturing: Built in Detroit

The 2018 Dodge Durango SRT is built at the 3-million-square-foot Jefferson North Assembly Plant (JNAP) in Detroit, which has been the site of Durango production since its introduction in 2011.


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Alfa Romeo Stelvio Q


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From May 2018, the all-new Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio, which includes many class-topping features, immediately becomes part of the premium compact SUV segment.

With a bold design, performance and technology, Stelvio Quadrifoglio clocked a new record for its class on the iconic Nürburgring: 7 minutes 51.7 seconds.

The Stelvio Quadrifoglio is equipped with an exclusive aluminium 2.9 V6 Bi-Turbo petrol engine – developed using technologies and engineering know-how from Ferrari, it delivers maximum power of 510hp at 6,500 rpm and generates a maximum torque of 600 Nm from 2,500 to 5,000 rpm. The power plant is teamed with the specifically calibrated eight-speed automatic transmission that allows gearshifts in just 150 milliseconds in Race driving mode – to maximise the driving experience, one-piece aluminium paddle shifters, integral with the steering column, are standard.

Its performance is outstanding: acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h in just 3.8 seconds and a best-in-class top speed of 283 km/h. But Alfa Romeo’ sports SUV is also incredibly efficient in terms of fuel consumption and emissions, thanks to its electronically controlled cylinder deactivation system and the “sailing” function, available in Advanced Efficiency driving mode.

For the first time, the 510hp 2.9 V6Bi-Turbo petrol engine is combined with theinnovative Q4 all-wheel drive system, which guarantees unbeatable performance, traction, driving pleasure and safety in all situations. Stelvio Quadrifoglio is also equipped with the exclusive Alfa Chassis Domain Control unit and is the only SUV in its class to provide differential Alfa™Active Torque Vectoring as standard. Alsostandard is the innovative Alfa™Active Suspension, a system that continually, actively controls the suspension and shock absorbers.

Impeccable handing and comfort is guaranteed thanks to the Stelvio Q’s suspension layout, with the exclusive AlfaLink™technology – up front it has a double wishbone system with semi-virtual steering axis, with a four-and-a-half link Multilink system at the rear. In any situation and at all speeds, driving the Stelvio Q, which has the most direct steering ratio on the market (12.1:1), is natural and instinctive.

Stelvio Quadrifoglio holds two best-in-class titles that make it the highest-performing SUV in its segment – with a kerb weight of 1,830 kg, it boasts the best weight/power ratio in its category (3.6 kg/hp) and the best specific power (176 hp/l).These amazing results, synonymous with great driving pleasure, were achieved through perfect weight distribution between the two axles and the use of ultra-lightweight materials such as carbon fibre for the driveshaft and aluminium for the engine, suspension, brakes, doors, wheel-arches, bonnet and tailgate.

Another special feature of Stelvio Quadrifoglio is the innovative electromechanical Integrated Brake System (IBS) – an Alfa Romeo brand exclusive, which first appeared on the Giulia – which has become the new benchmark in terms of both swift response and stopping distance on any road surface plus weight reduction compared to a conventional braking system. High-performance carbon-ceramic discs are also available as an option.

Extreme performance and leading-edge technology are unmistakably conveyed by the unique style of Stelvio Quadrifoglio, the finest expression of Italian design, interpreted through Alfa Romeo’s unique flair and the perfect synergy of form and function, in a sensual, muscular car body. The new model’s most distinctive characteristics include the bonnet with functional air vents, sporty side-skirts and massive wheel arches – all body-coloured – plus four exhaust tips.

The same sporty style, with an added touch of typically Italian elegance, is found in the interior, which has been tailored like an exquisite bespoke suit, with painstaking craftsmanship and premium materials – carbon fibre, leather and Alcantara.

The centre of the dashboard is dominated by the new Alfa™ Connect 3D NAV 8.8” infotainment system which includes Apple CarPlay, the smarter, safer way to use your iPhone in car. Android Auto™ is also compatible with the Stelvio Q’s new infotainment system, bringing the best of Google into the car.

The Stelvio also bears the legendary Quadrifoglio badge, which certifies quality in terms of class-topping performance, handling and power to weight ratio, specific external and internal features, exclusive powerplants and a genuine Alfa Romeo sound.




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Triple triumph for KIA at Red Dot Awards 2018


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The KIA Stinger, Stonic and Picanto all won in their categories, with the Stinger winning the prestigious ‘Red Dot: Best of the Best’ award

Juma Al Majid Motors, part of the Juma Al Majid Group and the sole distributor for KIA in the UAE, is celebrating a triple win for KIA at the Red Dot Awards 2018, where the new Stinger fastback sedan, the Stonic compact crossover and the third-generation Picanto city car all won in their respective categories, including the prestigious ‘Red Dot: Best of the Best’ award for the Stinger.

KIA’s vehicles were selected from over 6,300 products from 59 countries by a judging panel comprising 40 expert independent designers, design professors and trade journalists from all over the world. The 2018 awards add to the 21 Red Dot Awards KIA has won since its Soul model first took victory in 2009, and follow a string other accolades KIA has already won this year including:

  • Three iF Design Awards
  • ‘Best City Car’ for the Picanto at the Wheels Car of the Year Awards 2018
  • ‘Best Sports Saloon’ and ‘Overall Car of the Year’ for the Stinger GT at the Wheels Car of the Year Awards 2018
  • ‘Best Sub Compact Sedan’ for the Rio at the Middle East Car of the Year 2018

The KIA Stinger has been widely praised by the automotive media for its exceptional design, which channels the powerful, elegant spirit of historic grand tourers that transported their owners in style and at speed. At every stage of development, the KIA Stinger has been designed and engineered to be the perfect ‘gran turismo’ vehicle, featuring  a head-turning aesthetic; ample room for five occupants and their luggage; a stable, smooth ride; nimble handling with engaging, rear-biased power delivery; and a chassis and drivetrain that were honed at the Nürburgring.

Also designed in Frankfurt, the Stonic — KIA’s debut compact crossover — combines a striking and bold exterior design with an elevated seating position and practical SUV format. It is the most customisable KIA ever made, offering buyers a wide choice of two-tone paint combinations and interior colours.

The third generation of the KIA Picanto — KIA’s smallest car — brings youth and energy to the A-segment with its distinctive new design, high-quality, high-tech cabin, and exciting potential for customisation. Despite its compact dimensions, the Picanto’s intelligent design makes it one of the most spacious cars in its class.


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Honda take home prestigious awards


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Jazz, CR-V and AccordwinatWheels COTY and MECOTY awards

 Al-Futtaim Honda, exclusivedistributor of Honda cars, bikes, marineengines and power products in the UAE, has announced that the Honda Jazz, Accord and CR-V has won top honoursat two leading automotive award functions.

The recently launched Jazz won Best Compact car award at the annual Wheels Car of the Year awards while the CR-V and Accord (has since undergone a full model change and was launched in the UAE last month) won best Midsize Sedan and Best Small SUV respectively at the Middle East Car of the Year (MECOTY) awards.

The all-new Jazz comes loaded with features including a new 7.0in colour Display Audio touchscreen with swipe and touch functionality, Steering Wheel Mounted Controls, keyless entry, cruise control, rear parking sensors. The Jazz exudes a bold confidence too with itssporty, lower and wider look while under the bonnet is a peppy 1.5-litre Direct Injection i-VTEC engine that generates 130hpand 155Nm of torque.

Now in its 5thyear, the MECOTY awards arethe biggest, most coveted awards ceremony of the regional automotive industry and the judging panel includes some of the most respected motoring journalists from around the region. Winners of the MECOTY awards were chosen based on test drives by the jury members and public voting.

The new CR-V has a bold new styling, a more premium interior and a host of new features and technologies. The CR-V targets the highest levels of quality and driving refinement in its class with top class steering precision, ride comfort, body control and cabin quietness. The CR-V is powered by a 2.4-litre DOHC, direct injected i-VTEC engine that is mated to a smooth shifting and sporty continuously variable transmission (CVT) with Honda G-Shift control logic.

Commenting on the awards, Eric Benavente, Regional Managing Director of Al-Futtaim Honda said, “We are extremely pleased to have won these prestigious awards as the judging panel includes some of the biggest names in automotive journalism and experts in their field. The awards are also further testament to the quality and performance of these vehicles and is a fantastic accolade for the brand.”


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New Peugeot 3008 named Public Car of the Year 2018


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  • The French Lion brand reigns supreme at the Middle East Car of the Year Awards
  • The prestigious award marks the 41st win for Peugeot’s most celebrated SUV

The new PEUGEOT 3008 scooped the “Public Car of the Year” award at 2018 Middle East Car of the Year, which was held last week in Abu Dhabi. This admired trophy joins a series of 40 prizes the new PEUGEOT 3008 has already won globally. The French automaker’s popular car was declared winner through online public voting, garnering a total of 75,967 votes.

Commenting on this occasion, Cedric Zayoun, M.D., PSA Groupe GCC said: “We’re very proud to have won the Public COTY 2018. People’s opinions matter and this very award represents people’s choice of a car that integrates safety, performance, technology and style. We stressed the importance of the GCC region amongst potential markets for Groupe PSA upon inaugurating our first regional office in Dubai last year. Ever since, we have been channelling our efforts to meet the expectations of the GCC residents. Securing the Public Coty award is another milestone in the brand’s success story which underpins PEUGEOT’s innovative position in the SUV segment.”

The new Peugeot 3008 represents the brand’s highly technological expertise embodied in the latest generation PEUGEOT i-Cockpit®, a novel concept that has rewritten the book on the car cockpit. The large 8” touch-screen resembles a tablet installed in the centre of the dashboard and is equipped with capacitive technology for greater reactivity and practicality. It is accompanied by six elegant piano-key “toggle switches” – giving direct and permanent access to the main control functions: radio, climate control, navigation, vehicle parameters, telephone and mobile applications.

The Public Car of the Year 2018 has been hot-weather tested in the region. With an engine range that is both powerful and parsimonious, the new PEUGEOT 3008 features a 1.6L Turbo, 165hp engine and 6-speed automatic gearbox that give ultra-low consumption with a torque of 240N.m at 1400 rpm. The new PEUGEOT 3008 also meets the need to stay connected at the wheel and to be able to navigate calmly and peacefully, reflecting the latest technologies of Peugeot like Mirror Screen, wireless smartphone charging and 3D connected navigation.

The new PEUGEOT 3008 is also the first SUV to win the European Car of the Year 2017 since the creation of the trophy in 1964. It is also the fifth PEUGEOT vehicle named European Car of the Year, following the 308 in 2014, the 307 in 2002, the 405 in 1988 and the 504 in 1969.


SKODA UAE Launches the All-new and Innovative KODIAQ


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  • The KODIAQ is SKODA’s first 7 seater SUV
  • Features include state-of-the-art infotainment system, cutting edge connectivity and “Simply Clever” solutions
  • Spacious interior and powerful crystalline design

SKODA UAE introduces the new SKODA KODIAQ, a highly versatile addition to the mid-size SUV segment. With its impressive design, functionality, spacious interior, advanced connectivity and assistance systems, the KODIAQ makes a strong statement.

Its sleekly cut crystalline angles, extensive off-road capabilities and enhanced safety features, affirm that the KODIAQ is a definitive expression of precision. Comfort is another factor that has definitely not been overlooked. All of the controls are within reach of the driver’s fingertips and the car’s equipment presents convenience in every measure.

Its bold design encompasses several distinctive characteristics such as extra leg room, special features on the front and rear seats, ergonomically placed functions, excellent workmanship   and the largest boot in its class to fit all your precious cargo. The finely tuned chassis with optional Dynamic Chassis Control, combined with the solid steel body and completely soundproofed interior provide an ideal environment for passengers. You are always connected with the KODIAQ as its top of the line infotainment system consists of a 9.2” screen, 64 GB of storage, DVD and optional LTE module for high-speed internet access. The Wi-Fi hotspot allows passengers to browse the internet, stream music or view their emails while on the go.

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The truly dynamic driving experience delivers powerful performance with low fuel consumption. Owners can choose from two different turbo engines, a 1.4 turbo engine with 150 horsepower or the 2.0 turbo engine with 180 horsepower. The 1.4 is the first ever 1.4 turbo engine 4×4, 7 seater. The KODIAQ is also the first model by SKODA to offer the new dual clutch transmission for engines with high power and torque.

The KODIAQ is undoubtedly the perfect companion to meet the demands of daily life. It incorporates several elements of SKODA’s “Simply Clever” philosophy which facilitates accessibility, efficiency and provides a user-friendly atmosphere whether you are driving the car or just along for the ride.

Mohammed Al Dhaheri, General Manager SKODA noted, “True to its name – the KODIAQ is up for any challenge. Derived from the Kodiak bear, which inhabits the Kodiak Archipelago in Alaska, this car is a testament to automotive strength both on and off-road. As the brand’s first large SUV, the agile KODIAQ is presenting a totally new experience for our customers, unlike anything else we have ever created. The striking design is modern and appealing while its technology enables you to always stay within reach and its spacious interior provides for added comfort at all times. Whether you are tackling the everyday drive, or unwinding with a long road trip – the KODIAQ is a safe and reliable choice.”

The new KODIAQ is now available to order in the UAE, with a starting price of 110,000 AED including VAT. For further information on the entire SKODA model range and to discover more about the brand’s many exciting products and services, visit the SKODA UAE showrooms in Dubai and Al Ain or simply explore the world of SKODA at


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Lincoln MKZ Named Region’s Best Mid-Sized Executive Sedan at Fifth Annual Middle East Car of the Year Awards


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The new Lincoln MKZ has been named the region’s best Mid-Sized Executive Sedan at the fifth annual Middle East Car of the Year awards.The awards, now in their fifth year, are the most coveted automotive awards in the region, combining the expertise and experience of 16 leading motoring journalists from the GCC and Levant, who work through a multi-stage nomination and scoring process to arrive at their list of winners.

“It’s an absolute honour to have the MKZ’s remarkable intuitive technology, effortless performance and distinctive design recognized by the panel of jurors,” said Alex Schaeffer, Director, Lincoln Middle East. “Our customers look for three attributes in a luxury midsize sedan – effortless technologies, a beautiful design that is crafted with attention to detail, and a vehicle that has impressive power that makes it a pleasure to drive. We are extremely proud of the MKZ and how it has resonated with our customers around the Middle East.”

The redesigned MKZ is designed for those looking for something different in the luxury market. From the 20 speaker Revel Audio system to Presidential Series with designer materials like Alcantara, drivers can relish in one of the most exciting vehicles in its segment.

The MKZ is also designed to excite both the driver and passengers. Semi-autonomous driver assist features help reduce the pain points in driving; adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go functionality will automatically slow the car down in traffic, and resume higher speeds once it clears; an auto hold feature keeps the car at a complete stop without the driver having to keep their foot on the brake pedal, while available enhanced park assist will help drivers into parallel or perpendicular parking spaces. Effortless performance comes courtesy of the 3.0-litre twin-turbocharged engine which produces up to 400 horsepower when coupled with an intelligent all-wheel-drive system.

Dynamic Torque Vectoring helps improve cornering agility without compromising ride comfort, while the available Lincoln Drive Control allows for adapting suspension dynamics, noise control, power steering and gear ratios all on the drivers terms.


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The world’s leading car brands took centre stage at the recently concluded, fifth edition of the Middle East Car of the Year (MECOTY) awards, which was held last week on 2nd April 2018, at ADNEC, Abu Dhabi, UAE.

The invite-only ceremony was attended by top executives of all major automotive brands from across the region and several dignitaries, including guests all the way from Japan, USA, Korea, UK, and Germany.

The night’s leading winners were Volvo EMEA and PSA Groupe (Peugeot) winning the prestigious Jury & Public COTY awards respectively, whilst top brands, including; Audi, Ford, Volkswagen, Jaguar, Land Rover, Mercedes, Honda, Toyota, Lincoln, GMC, Chevrolet, Lamborghini, Hyundai and KIA were among the winners announced in an exciting and stunning gala awards night.

The nominees underwent a stringent multi-stage voting process, spanning over 10 months, by a select panel of 16 judges, who are handpicked to represent their respective countries, including; UAE, Kuwait, Oman, Egypt, Bahrain, Lebanon, Jordan & Saudi Arabia.

“Five years since their inception and the MECOTY awards continue to serve as the region’s most comprehensive platform of automotive experts, and we, at Ford, are thrilled to be recognized each year,” said Chris Probert, Marketing Communications Director, Ford Middle East & Africa. “With the F-150 Raptor and the Mustang GT350 winning top spot in their respective categories, this is testament to the great legendary vehicles that we continue to bring to our customers. Both models enjoy a rich heritage and unmatched passion for performance that continue to go from strength to strength each year.”

Winning a MECOTY award is a testament for manufacturers that proves that their models are in line with the regional consumer needs and re-affirms their commitment of providing world-class vehicles and services to the Middle East region, one of the largest car markets globally.

“We are delighted to receive these prestigious awards for the XC60 and XC40. The way they have been received by journalists and consumers across the region, as well as by the MECOTY jury panel, is truly encouraging for Volvo Cars as a brand. The Middle East is one of our key markets and this shows us that we are on the right track.” – Jesus Fernandez de Mesa, MD, Volvo Cars EMEA Importers. 

Peugeot’s latest SUV, 5008, which won the coveted ‘Public COTY’ award, claimed 16.3% of the 70,000+ votes received from around the world, further cementing its market position, as a brand that resonates with the regional consumer’s expectations, shortly after opening their first regional office in the Middle East.

Commenting on this occasion, Cedric Zayoun, M.D., PSA Groupe GCC said: “We’re very proud to have won the Public COTY 2018. People’s opinions matter and this very award represents people’s choice of a car that integrates safety, performance, technology and style. We stressed the importance of the GCC region amongst potential markets for Groupe PSA upon inaugurating our first regional office in Dubai last year. Ever since, we have been channelling our efforts to meet the expectations of the GCC residents. Securing the Public COTY award is another milestone in the brand’s success story which underpins PEUGEOT’s innovative position in the SUV segment.”

Audi, which holds the records for the most number of wins over the past editions, witnessed another successful night, by winning three MECOTYs and being recognised as the leader in its competing classes.

“It was a great pleasure and honour to be recognised by the MECOTY jury with three wonderful awards for the Audi brand. The TT RS, RS 3 and the Audi S5 were all celebrated winners in their respective classes and show the success of the Audi Sport brand and our the premium performance models in the Audi range. With many more innovative new models to come this year, we are already looking forward to the next year’s MECOTY awards to hopefully continue our story of success.” – Enrico Atanasio, Brand Director, Audi Middle East. 

“MECOTY’s fifth consecutive edition is truly a milestone achievement. We congratulate all the winning manufacturers, and thank the supporting authorities, media, voters and of course, our jury members for their support.’’- Saaed Al Marzouqi, CEO, Custom Events, LLC. 

Ford Scoops up Two Wins at Fifth Annual Middle East Car of the Year Awards Ceremony


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  • Mustang Shelby GT350 named Performance Coupe of the Year
  • F-150 Raptor secures Truck of the Year
  • Second award in a week for the F-150 Raptor, having earlier secured Wheels magazine’s Pickup of the Year

The Ford F-150 Raptor and Mustang Shelby GT350 have earned top honours during the prestigious Middle East Car of the Year (MECOTY) awards, held in Abu Dhabi earlier this week.

The Shelby GT350 collected honours as Performance Coupe of the Year, and the all-conquering F-150 Raptor crushed its opposition to be named Truck of the Year.

The awards, now in their fifth year, are the most coveted automotive awards in the region, combining the expertise and experience of 16 leading motoring journalists from the GCC and Levant, who work through multi stage nomination and scoring process to arrive at their list of winners.

“We’re thrilled to see two of the most exciting and dynamic vehicles we produce excel in the MECOTY awards this year,” said Chris Probert, Ford Middle East and Africa Director of Marketing Communications. “The Shelby GT350 is an incredible performance coupe, with a track ready chassis and high-revving 534 PS V8 engine, while the F-150 Raptor continues to be the region’s favourite out-of-the-box performance truck for off-road extremes. Both models embody Ford’s passion for performance and resonate with millions of fans around the world.”

The Shelby GT350 badge has been associated with the Ford Mustang since 1965 – and has become synonymous with high performance road and track driving ever since. The current model develops its enormous horsepower and 582 Nm torque from a 5.2-litre flat plane crank V8 (known as the Voodoo) – the most powerful naturally aspirated road-going engine in Ford history. With a redline of 8250rpm, it is also the highest revving production V8 Ford to date.

The Shelby GT350’s dynamic and adrenaline-fueled ride comes courtesy of the MagneRide Damping System, while an aluminum strut brace and coolers for the engine oil, transmission and differential all help the car to perform at its best.

The sporty interior is trimmed with aluminum, alcantara and leather. Recaro sports seats hug the driver and passengers with a mix of carbon weave cloth and Miko sueded cloth to help hold them firmly in place turn after turn.

Ford’s all-conquering F-150 Raptor added another award to its growing trophy cabinet. The purpose built off-road machine gathered the MECOTY Truck of the Year award, having been named Dubai-based Wheels magazine’s Pickup of the Year just a week earlier.

Based on the backbone of America’s best-selling truck for the past 41 straight years, the 2017 F-150 Raptor saw the introduction of a high strength aluminium body and second generation, high output 3.5-litre twin-turbo EcoBoost engine with 10-speed transmission.

Use of advanced materials saw its weight drop up to 227 kilograms over its predecessor, while the 421 PS engine with its 678 Nm torque boosted its on- and off-road performance. A new four-wheel drive system, 10-speed transmission, torque on demand transfer case and all-new Terrain Management system gives the Raptor its incredible off-road capability, while its FOX Racing Shox with 9-stage bypass damping with 48mm more suspension travel helps improve its monstrous capability beyond the pavement. Massive, second generation BFGoodrich K02 tyres with beadlock capable wheels are also designed for serious off-road work.

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