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Big Boots Matter

Luggage Space

If size matters to you when it comes to what you can (or can’t) fit in your boot, then how much space is commonly available in popular new car buys?  The chances are you’ll want to know, so first are some of the most popular vehicles bought in Australia and their boot volume (litres).  All the vehicles listed have their rear seats in place, because we all know the greatest vehicles carry a decent amount of luggage without having to flip their rear seats flat.  There’s nothing worse than telling little Johnny that he can’t travel with his mates because the split folding rear seats have been split folded to take the school camp food!

At the end is a list of the best picks for carrying 550 litres or more behind the rear seats.  You might be surprised, or not…

Supermini

Average boot space: 340.88 litres

1/ Renault Clio – 395 litres

2/ Honda Jazz – 354 litres

3/ Volkswagen Polo – 351 litres

Audi A1 – 335 litres

Skoda Fabia – 330 litres

Hyundai i20 – 326 litres

Kia Rio – 325 litres

Peugeot 208 – 311 litres

 

Hatchbacks

Average boot space: 479.40 litres

1/ Skoda Octavia 590 litres

2/ Peugeot 308 501 litres

3/ Honda Civic 492 litres

Renault Megane 434

VW Golf 380 litres

 

Small 4-door sedan

Average boot space: 464.75 litres

1/ Honda City | 536 litres

2/ Honda Civic | 519 litres

3/ Renault Megane | 503 litres

Kia Cerato | 502 litres

Toyota Corolla | 470 litres

Hyundai Accent Sport | 465 litres

Hyundai Elantra | 458 litres

Holden Astra | 445 litres

Mazda 3 444 litres

Audi A3 | 425 litres

Mazda 2 410 litres

Mitsubishi Lancer | 400 litres

 

Medium 4-Door Sedan

Average boot space: 501.82 litres

1/ Volkswagen Passat | 586 litres

2/ Skoda Octavia | 568 litres

3/ Toyota Camry | 524 litres

Kia Optima | 510 litres

Hyundai Sonata | 510 litres

Subaru Liberty | 493 litres

BMW 3 Series | 480 litres

Mazda 6 | 474 litres

Subaru Impreza | 460 litres

Ford Mondeo | 458 litres

Honda Accord | 457 litres

 

Large 4-Door Sedan

Average boot space: 509.2 litres

1/ Skoda Superb | 625 litres

2/ Volkswagen Arteon | 563 litres

3/ Holden Commodore | 490 litres

Chrysler 300 | 462 litres

Kia Stinger | 406 litres

 

Station wagons

Average boot space: 560.9 litres

1/ Holden Sportwagon 895 litres

2/ Skoda Superb 660 litres

3/ Peugeot 308 SW 660 litres

Ford Focus SW 608 litres

VW Golf SW 605 litres

Hyundai i30 SW 602 litres

Audi A6 SW 586 litres

Volvo V70 575 litres

BMW 5-Series SW 570 litres

Jaguar XF SW 565 litres

Kia Optima SW 552 litres

Ford Mondeo 541 litres

Mercedes Benz E-Class 540 litres

Subaru Levorg 522 litres

Mazda 6 SW 522 litres

Renault Megane SW 521 litres

Subaru Outback 512 litres

Peugeot 407 430 litres

Toyota Corolla SW 392 litres

Mini Clubman SW 360 litres

 

SUVs

LIGHT SUVs

Average boot space: 346.2 litres

1/ Citroen C3 Aircross – 410 litres

2/ Holden Trax – 356 litres

3/ Hyundai Venue 355 litres

Ford EcoSport – 346 litres

Mazda CX-3 264 litres

 

SMALL SUVs

Average boot space: 385.91 litres

1/ Jeep Compass 438 litres

2/ Honda HR-V 437 litres

3/ Kia Seltos 433 litres

Nissan Qashqai 430 litres

Renault Kadjar 408 litres

Mitsubishi ASX 393 litres

Toyota C-HR 377 litres

Hyundai Kona 361 litres

Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross 341 litres

Mazda CX-30 317 litres

Subaru XV 310 litres

 

MEDIUM SUVs

Average boot space: 496.67 litres

1/ Volkswagen Tiguan 615 litres

2/ Toyota RAV4 580 litres

3/ Nissan X-Trail 565 litres

Honda CR-V 522 litres

Subaru Forester 498 litres

Hyundai Tucson 488 litres

Mitsubishi Outlander 477 litres

MG HS 463 litres

Renault Koleos 458 litres

Kia Sportage 446 litres

Mazda CX-5 442 litres

Ford Escape 406 litres

 

LARGE SUVs

Average boot space: 669.50 litres

1/ Holden Acadia 1042 litres

2/ Holden Equinox 846 litres

3/ Mazda CX-9 810 litres

Toyota LandCruiser Prado 620 litres

Hyundai Santa Fe 547 litres

Toyota Kluger 529 litres

Subaru Outback 512 litres

Ford Everest 450 litres

 

Keep in mind that most vehicles we buy now do have split folding rear seats, so when we don’t have to carry passengers we can make use of the rear seat space in exchange for carrying cargo/luggage.  Many of us don’t want to have to use the rear seat space for luggage; often the back seats are occupied with passengers anyway, so the vehicles that provide over 500 litres behind the back seats are going to be the ones that offer excellent luggage space.

If we look at averages alone, the Large SUV is easily king for luggage carrying duties. Most are seven-seater SUVs, too; but make it just the 5 seats, and they can only be a win/win combination.  The next step up would be a van!

However, both the Station Wagon and Large sedan are other excellent options for you to go to for decent luggage carrying ability.  Even the Medium Sedan offers some cars that provide excellent big boots: the Volkswagen Passat (586 litres), Skoda Octavia (568 litres) and the Toyota Camry (524 litres) are the best examples.

One thing that did surprise me was that the boot space in a small SUV isn’t much to write home about; its average for the class being a dismal 385.91 litres.  This dropped to an abysmal 346.2 litres for light SUVs.  These vehicles, and smaller are best avoided if decent boot space is what you need.

Any vehicle that can offer at least 550 litres of luggage space in the boot without having to fold down any of the rear seats is a winner for cargo carriers.  If you are looking for a vehicle (that isn’t a van) that will deliver good boot space (550 litres or more) for things like: school bags, computer equipment, sport gear, holiday luggage etc., then you’ll probably need one of the following vehicles:

Hatchback:

Skoda Octavia Hatchback

Skoda Octavia Hatchback 590 litres

Medium 4-dr Sedan:

VW Passat Sedan

Volkswagen Passat  586 litres

Skoda Octavia 568 litres

Large 4-dr Sedan

Skoda Superb Sedan/Hatch

Skoda Superb  625 litres

Volkswagen Arteon 563 litres

Station Wagon

Holden Commodore Sportwagon

Holden Sportwagon 895 litres

Skoda Superb 660 litres

Peugeot 308 660 litres

Ford Focus 608 litres

VW Golf 605 litres

Hyundai i30 602 litres

Audi A6 586 litres

Volvo V70 575 litres

BMW 5-Series 570 litres

Jaguar XF 565 litres

Kia Optima 552 litres

Medium SUV

VW Tiguan SUV

Volkswagen Tiguan 615 litres

Toyota RAV4 580 litres

Nissan X-Trail 565 litres

Large SUV

Holden Acadia 7-seater

Holden Acadia 1042 litres

Holden Equinox 846 litres

Mazda CX-9 810 litres

Toyota LandCruiser Prado 620 litres

Hyundai Santa Fe 547 litres

 

These Tech Innovations Could Change the Driving Experience as we Know it

While all the attention at the moment is being devoted to autonomous vehicles and the next generation of fuel technology, numerous auto makers, manufacturers and technology companies are working on other plans. Some of these developments have even made it into our vehicles already, although they are yet to progress to a mainstream level of adoption. We take a look at 5 innovative technologies to keep an eye on.

 

 

Connected Vehicles

One of the emerging areas which developers are looking into is the way in which vehicles are able to communicate between one another, as well as with key infrastructure. Some car makers have already begun to roll out vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure systems, with uptake only set to become more prolific as self-driving vehicles appear on our roads.

The systems are primarily intended to help coordinate and plan the safe movement of vehicles. However, until such time that all cars and traffic lights are using the technology, it is being used to deliver information about road and weather conditions. Locally, the AAA is advocating for the technology.

Elsewhere, manufacturers have their eyes on delivering software updates like maps ‘over the air’, meaning you won’t have to visit a dealer or find the updates yourself. This comes courtesy of another emerging trend in vehicles, the introduction of Wi-Fi and mobile network connectivity.

 

Biometrics

Various manufacturers are looking into health monitoring systems that track the vitals of a driver behind the wheel. This includes technology that would identify if a driver was having a heart attack, before safely bringing the car under control. Meanwhile, some companies are looking to address the same issue by investigating the role that seatbelts or steering wheels could play when connected to mobile phones and autonomous vehicles. In other cases, it is biometrics that provide added security to the vehicle or those that help you address journey management and trip planning.

 

Your New Heads-up Display

To date, several manufacturers have already had a go at developing electronic heads-up displays that project onto your windshield. The next level of progression however, will be a much more intelligent level of technology. Not only will you have access to typical vehicle instrument readings, but developers intend to advance the roll-out of features like night vision, eye and distraction tracking systems (to monitor a driver’s alertness), and even the prospect of augmented reality for navigation.

 

 

App Store and In-car Payments

As car manufacturers look into the issue of motorists accessing their phones while driving, some have adopted the belief that the solution lies in accommodating the behaviour of motorists rather than trying to change it. Accordingly, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are being fitted into more and more cars so that drivers have access to certain features found on their phone.

On top of that, however, our in-car dashboards are set to be equipped with payment capability so that you can have greater access to pay things on the go. In the current environment where there has been an acceleration in the shift to digital payments, motorists could soon be looking at a range of efficient means to pay for groceries, takeaway or other goods through their car.

N Is Good: Hyundai i30 Sedan N Line & Kona EV Sets Record.

Hyundai Motor Company Australia has released details of the forthcoming (last quarter, 2020) i30 Sedan N Line. With a bespoke Australian suspension tune, the i30N Sedan N Line is a step up from the striking looking i30 sedan released globally earlier in 2020 The N Line version has its own characteristics with specific performance enhancements and design motifs. This opens the door wider to more customers. Sonata N Line will also be released soon after, complete with a 2.5L turbo four.

Power is provided by a 1.6L turbo four, driving the front wheels via a six speed manual or seven speed dual clutch auto. Peak power and torque figures are 150kW and 265Nm. Paddle shifters and drive mode selections add driving spice, and stopping is brought into play from bigger front brake rotors inside 18 inch alloys. Ride comfort comes from that Aussie tuned multi-link independent rear suspension. N Line trim looks good on the steering wheel, N Sport seats with leather trimmed bolsters, and a metal accented gear selector. Alloy pedals add more visual appeal and there is a bit of tech with wireless CarPlay and Android Auto.The i30 sedan has been given N Line styling, with side skirts, gloss black moulding on the wheel wells and wing mirrors. Hyundai says the sedan has their “Parametric Dynamics” which covers the flowing lines of the body and the assertive look on the cascade grille, complete with N Line identification Aero performance and engine cooling is funneled from arrow-look air curtains in the lower corners. The profile leads the eyes towards the finely sculpted rear which has also been refined for better aero flow. There is an integrated spoiler, chromed twin pipes, and a bespoke N Line diffuser.
Naturally there is an array of safety features including Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist (FCA), Lane Keeping Assist (LKA), Lane Following Assist (LFA), High Beam Assist (HBA), Driver Attention Warning (DAW) and Blind-Spot Collision Avoidance Assist (BCA) with Rear Cross-Traffic Collision-Avoidance Assist (RCCA).

“The new i30 Sedan N Line model will appeal to customers who favour a sporty look and spirited driving performance,” said Thomas Schemera, Executive Vice President, Head of Product Division at Hyundai Motor Group. “The expanded range will help solidify i30’s position as a leader in the small car passenger segment.”

Hyundai also set a new EV record with a trio of Kona EVs traveling, separately, over 1,000 kilometres each on a single charge. 1,018.7, 1,024.1 and 1,026.0 kilometres were the distances covered and run under strict guidelines. All vehicles used in the test were factory-spec and unmodified, equipped with standard Nexen N Fera SU1 low rolling resistance tires in the 215/55R17 size. Each vehicle’s air conditioning and entertainment systems remained off, with available power used solely for propulsion. Only the daytime running lights remained on to comply with the legal requirements for road traffic.

Each distance also represents a record in terms of 64kWh battery capacity, as the power consumption figures of 6.28, 6.25 and 6.24kWh per 100 km were well below the standard value of 14.7kWh per 100km determined by the Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure (WLTP). Hyundai recently announced a new sub-brand that will be called IONIQ and dedicated to purely electric vehicles.

Red Planet Rover: Perseverance Pays Off.

Late evening Sydney time, July 30. An Atlas V rocket lifts off from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral, on Florida’s south eastern tip. At 191 feet in height, it’s barely half as tall as the mighty Saturn Vs that lifted off from the same area in the late 1960s and early 1970s. It’s also just a few feet taller overall than the full space shuttle assembly.What makes this launch important is the cargo. Perseverance, a new Mars rover and named by Alex Mather, a now 13yo schoolboy from Virginia after NASA had a naming contest, is the reason for the launch and is expected to land on Mars in February, 2021. It’s the newest and better version of the two valiant rovers already on Mars, Spirit and Opportunity. Both landed on Mars in January of 2004, and far exceeded their design specifications.
NASA learned many things from the efforts of the pair, and this includes for Perseverance a better power source, more cameras, and for the mission, a dedicated suite of investigative tools. the aim? To look for signs of any lifeforms, existing or previous, in the landing site on Mars. Jezero Crater is the chosen point, and for the possibility of life due to the postulation water once flowed there. A fan-shaped delta indicates water flow and the clay material is why NASA has chosen that site, with the thinking the clay may have signs of microbial life.

Perseverance itself is a bit of a beast. At roughly the same size as a micro-car, the rover is bristling with tools that will dig, drill, photograph, and listen for the first time ever, to Mars. A pair of microphones have been fitted to Perseverance, along with Mastcam-Z, a stereo-imaging zoomable panoramic camera system. Rimfax (Radar imaging for Mars sub-surface experiment) is a sub-surface (up to 10 metres) radar scanner that along with Perseverance’s autonomous driving programming, will measure the ground under the six driven wheels and hopefully avoid the sandtrap that stopped Spirit in her tracks. A boom arm of 2.1 metres in length and hinged in five places will hold the mechanisms to drill into the surface. In a first, samples will be stored and eventually launched from the Mars surface and rendezvous with a craft and return the samples to Earth. This is expected to be accomplished in a decade’s time.

Sherloc (Scanning Habitable Environments with Raman and Luminescence for Organics and Chemicals) and Watson are the pair of cameras up front, and they’ll work together to provide spectrometry in the ultra-violet spectrum. Supercam is a laser powered micro-imagining device, and perseverance can keep an eye on the weather thanks to an inbuilt weather station called Meda (Mars environmental dynamics analyser) which will measure temperature, wind speed and direction, pressure, relative humidity, radiation, and dust particle size and shape. And in an exciting experiment, Moxie (Mars oxygen ISRU experiment) will use the thin Martian atmosphere as a source to see if oxygen can be produced.

Perhaps the most intriguing part of the Perseverance design is how NASA has fitted Ingenuity. This is a drone ‘copter, and will fly above Perseverance to map out a way forward, plus it will be the first aircraft to fly upon a world other than our own Earth. The blades are a two by two configuration, and are constructed of a carbon-fibre foam core mix. The landing legs are carbon-fibre, and the blades circulate under a solar panel that will both drive the blades and provide power to the senors & cameras underneath.Perseverance herself is a re-evolution of Spirit and Opportunity. The wheels have been increased from 50cm to 52cm for a greater rolling diameter. The design and the construction of the wheels has changed to allow for more durability with aluminuim and titanium being employed. Extra equipment sees Perseverance up to 1,050kg in mass over a predecessor, Curiosity. She weighed in at 899kg.

Power comes from a plutonium dioxide pack weighing 4.8kg and producing 110 watts. A pair of lithium-ion batteries will supplement this on demand. Dubbed the MMRTG, the multi-mission radioisotope thermoelectric generator replaces the solar panels that are susceptible to dust coverings and subsequent power loss. It’s not cheap to build, at over US$109 million…The expected lifespan is 14 years.Perseverance is due to land on Barsoom, a name given to Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs in one of his early 1900s novels, on February 18, 2021. The landing process is fully autonomous and NASA describes it as “seven minutes of hell” as the lander goes from 21,000kmh to virtually zero to land, safely, on Mars.

Take 5: BMW’s Mid Size Saloon Updated.

BMW have declared 2020 to be the year of reinvigoration. The German sports luxury car maker continues to roll out uipdates in 2020 and the latest is to the mid-sized sedan, the 5 Series. The range brings the seventh generation 5 Series to market with: 520i, 530i, 530d, 530e PHEV, M550i xDrive and M550i xDrive Pure. Included on all variants will be the M Sport package. There has been changes to the fuel pressure system on the petrol engines for the 520i and 530i. They’ll have a bump from 200 bar to 350 bar for better throttle response and fuel efficiency.

Pricing for the range starts from $95,900 for the 520i 2.0L TwinPower Turbo. There is 135kW and 290Nm on tap here for a 7.8 second 0 – 100kmh time. Head to the 530i with 185kW and 350Nm for 6.1 seconds and the price is $115,900. A PHEV joins the range at $118,900 with BMW’s Synchronous Electric Motor and 2.0L TwinTurbo and packs a 215kW and 420Nm punch. 0 – 100 time is 5.9 seconds.
A six cylinder diesel for the 530d sees power at 195kW and a thumping 620Nm of torque for $125,900. The run to 100 takes 5.7 seconds. Moving into the M550i xDrive Pure and it’s a 4.4L V8 TwinPower unit with 390kW and 750Nm. At $137,900 it’s take just 3.8 seconds to reach freeway speeds. For a little extra the M550i xDrive has the same performance but ups the luxury stakes for $152,900. It’s the flagship for the M Performance line and has the fully variable xDrive AWD system. All prices are Manufacturers List Price.

The PHEV has the electric engine integrated with the gearbox and the package can be switched between petrol, hybrid, or electric only for propulsion. When driven in petrol-only mode, the 530e produces 135kW and 300Nm, while the electric motor offers standalone outputs of 80kW and 265Nm. Battery range is around 67km. BMW adds an XtraBoost function. It bumps peak power to 215kW for up to ten seconds when “vigourous acceleration” is required. It’s a standard fitment and engages when the Driving Experience Control’s Sports mode is selected and the drive selector moves to M/S.
Standard trim in the 520i includes the M Sport package, with the exterior features such as 19 inch alloys and Adaptive LED headlights adding visual pull with Dakota Leather trim, Parking Assistant Plus, and Head Up Display are part of the interior features. The 530i adds a Harman Kardon 16 speaker hifi, front heated seats, and automatic tailgate. The M550i xDrive sees 20 inch alloys and M Performance tuning. handling and drive has the M Sport diff and Adaptive M Suspension Professional. A luxury touch is the soft close for the doors and a leather coated instrument panel. Forward vision is courtesy of BMW’s Laserlight system.

That’s available as an option on the BMW 520i, 530i, 530d and 530e, while the BMW M5 Competition donates the M Multifunctional Seats are optionable for all models. Visual spark for the 520i is available with high gloss red M Sport brakes, and a zero dollar option for the rest of the range. A different form of visual appeal can be optioned as well, with the Drive Recorder that uses the surround cameras to provide up to 40 seconds worth of video.
Bend the ear of your local BMW dealer for a test drive when the range is released.

2020 Subaru Forester Hybrid – S Hybrid & XV Hybrid – Private Fleet Car Review.

This Car Review Is About: Two new Hybrid vehicles for the Australian market, courtesy of Subaru. The Forester is the brand’s best seller, and along with the XV sees the company launch their first forays into the hybrid arena.

Each come with a varying trim range. The Forester Hybrid comes in Forester Hybrid-L and Forester Hybrid-S trim, and is available in four “normal” levels; 2.5i, 2.5i-L, 2.5i Premium, and 2.5i-S. XV is available in XV Hybrid AWD, and 2.0i, 2.0i-L AWD, 2.0i Premium AWD, and 2.0i-S AWD.

How Much Does It Cost? According to the pricing matrix on the Subaru Australia website, the entry Forester is $39,322, Forester 2.5i-L Hybrid starts at $44,731, with the 2.5i-S at $51,031 drive-away. XV kicks off at $33,546 in entry level trim, and $40,239 for the sole XV Hybrid.

Under The Bonnet Is: Where the changes lie. A 2.0L boxer four in the Forester replaces the normally fitted 2.5L The battery is located in the rear. The XV has the same layout, and also comes with a 2.0L petrol engine. The Forester and XV have a 48L tank. That’s down from the normal 63L. There are no changes to the Subaru signature all wheel drive platform otherwise.The spec sheet lists the peak power for the Forester and XV Hybrid as 110kW at 6000rpm, and 12.3kW for the electric motor. Torque is rated 196Nm at a typical 4000rpm, and 66Nm for the electric motor.

Economy for the Forester Hybrid, says Subaru, is 6.7L/100km combined, 7.5L for the urban, and 6.2L for the highway. For the Forester, we finished on 7.7L/100km. This was on a drive loop of 80% urban and a hilly backroads remaining 20%. XV Hybrid is rated as 6.5L/100km for the combined, 7.5L for the urban, 5.9L/100km for the highway and also finished on 7.7L/100km. Required fuel is 91RON. Both are heavier than their non-hybrid siblings, with the Forester at 1,603kg dry and XV at 1,536kg. Both are around 90kg heavier thanks to the battery pack.Transmission is a seven step CVT in both with manual mode. Torque vectoring is standard as well.

On The Outside It’s: Moreso a badge denoting the hybrids drive-train with E-Boxer than any wholesale changes since the cars were facelifted two years ago.Forester is much like the Outback. Both look like station wagons yet are SUV sized. Forester is 4,605mm in length, and stands an impressive 1,730mm to provide that SUV presence. It’s clever design work from Subaru in this area as compared to other brands, it simply doesn’t look like an SUV. The XV is 4,465mm, and is actually a little lower than the non-hybrid XV, standing 1,595mm, 20mm down on the roof-rail fitted non-hybrids. The XV is more a hunchbacked style visually though, thanks to the extra ride height it has over the Impreza hatch it’s based on. Ground clearance for both is 220mm. Wheelbases are almost identical, with a mere 5mm separating the pair at 2,670mm and 2,665mm respectively. Wheel and rubber combos for the two tested were 225/55/18s on the Forester S Hybrid with Bridgestone supplying the rubber. The XV has Yokohamas and 225/60/17s. There are eight paint colours for the Forester, including the deep aqua blue on the Forester Hybrid and a shade of aquamarine on the XV. It was a colour remarked upon by many as being a lovely colour.The C shaped LED lights in the front and rear clusters bring a model and brand defining look, as it’s common across the range Subaru offer. The Forester has self leveling front lights and they’re steering sensitive. The XV doesn’t get these features in Hybrid trim.

On The Inside It’s: Definably Subaru. There are the three screens, one in the dash binnacle, the touchscreen in the centre (smaller in the XV at 6.5 inches against the 8.0 screen in Forester S Hybrid), and the very useful info screen perched up high. Audio is DAB enabled however none of the information normally available such as artist and song could be accessed. The Forester had a Harman-Kardon supplied speaker system. There is also a CD player in each.

External views though, as part of the safety system, can also be accessed here, such as the left hand side when reversing and showing in crystal clear clarity the angle of the car in relation to the kerb. The steering wheel has a pair of tabs on the lower left arc, at around the seven o-clock position, and a flick back or forth is what changes the information on the dash display. The Info button on the spoke changes the info on the upper screen, and includes angles of incline, economy, and drive distribution when underway. Centre console rocker switches for the front seat heating sit close to the X-Drive control knob (chromed in the Forester, a tab in the XV) and they warm the seats quickly in the Forester. The XV has leather appointed cloth sports style seats and no heating is fitted here.

The driver’s seat is powered and has memory positioning. Leather trim is found on the Forester’s seats, cloth for the XV Hybrid. Cargo room is 509L to 1,779L in the Forester, 345L to 919L in the XV, showcasing the differing rear roof lines plus the higher cargo floor in the XV.

The dash design is classy bar one small niggle. The USB ports up front and well and truly buried in a niche that requires unnecessary fiddling to access. There’s some crouching down required in order to first sight the ports then actually insert cables. Ancillary controls for the driver are smartly laid out and visible above the driver’s right knee. There are a couple of acronyms in the pair; SRH is Steering Responsive Headlights and AVH is Auto Vehicle Hold, the braking mechanism on slopes.What About Safety?: From the Subaru website: Subaru’s Vision Assist technology featuring: Front View Monitor, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Reverse Automatic Braking, Side View Monitor. There is also the Driver Monitoring System – Driver Focus3 featuring distraction and drowsiness warning. There is an icon on the driver’s dash display and warning tones aplenty of it reads the face and feels the eyes haven’t been looking forward. airbags are seven in number.On The Road It’s: Surprising in a couple of ways. In the case of the hybrid system in the Toyota range, the cars start in a fully electric ready to go mode. The cars then will reach 20kph before the petrol engine switches in. In the case of the Forester and XV, the petrol engine is rotating from the get-go. Select Drive, gently squeeze the go pedal, and there’s plenty of urge as both battery and petrol get the cars underway.There is an EV icon in the driver’s display area, and this appears moreso when the cars are cruising on the highway, and the petrol engine is barely ticking over. There’s a fair bit of engine noise when really pushing it, such as going up hills, and this was where the Forester really suffered in economy. That smaller tank didn’t help as just after 260 kilometres covered the gauge said it was half empty. The XV had more kilometres on the petrol engine and felt noticeably perkier, looser, more spritely.

Certain sections of the acceleration curve felt more linear, less stressed than the Forester. However, no matter what, compared to the system in Toyota’s range, the petrol engines here felt more “always on”, and engage the EV system far less than Toyota’s. The Toyota setup is definitely EV up to 20kph, the Subaru setup says it should but doesn’t. Even on very light throttle pressing on the highway, the petrol engine is still engaged.

Also, the CVT isn’t bad, but there’s still that sense of energy sapping depending on how the throttle is used. Under hard acceleration there’s that constant sense of slipping however more a snese of gears changing. Lighter throttle pressing seems to have better response and more a traditional CVT feel with revs rising and motion increasing.The attached image shows Subaru’s intent. In real terms the engine package is the only difference in how they drive. The brakes have a slightly more responsive feel, the steering is quick and light to the touch, and there is little to quibble about in regards to the roadholding abilities. With the all wheel drive grip levels and torque vectoring facility, both cars can be pushed into turns and corners with plenty of confidence. On longer sweeping corners there is a distinct lack of need to constantly adjust the steering as well.

What About Safety?: Both cars have a five star rating. Both have Subaru’s much vaunted Eyesight safety system. There is a Driver Monitoring System that literally watches the driver’s face. There is facial recognition and looks for drowsiness and distraction cues. Blind Spot Monitor, Rear Cross Traffic, Reverse Braking for when sensors pick up an object in a reversal path, Forward Collision Warning (which can be a bit overly sensitive), and seven airbags round out a very solid package.

What About Warranty And Service?: Like most hybrid makers, it’s a little mixed. The main range comes with a 5 Years/Unlimited kilometres warranty period, with the Subaru New Vehicle Warranty period on high-voltage batteries for Subaru Hybrid vehicles is 8 years/160,000 kilometres, whichever comes first. It seems unlikely that drivers would do less than 160,000 over eight years.

Servicing costs for the hybrids are the same. The first checkup after one month is free, with the Forester S Hybrid and XV Hybrid on a 12 month or 12,500 kilometre cycle. The first service cost $350.25, followed by B’ Service 24 months or 25,000kms at $588.31, and then the ‘C’ Service 36 months or 37,500kms is $354.83. The final two are ‘D’ Service, 48 months or 50,000kms, $784.77 and ‘E’ Service 60 months or 62,500kms at $354.86.

At The End Of The Drive. It’s mixed feelings. Given Subaru’s own fuel consumption figures, and that we recently got 5.0L/100km from a Camry Hybrid, loaded with four adults, some baggae, and a mid sized pooch, they fall short of expectations. They’re not big cars, they’ve been driven in urban areas, yes, but with one aboard for pretty much most of the drive cycles. There is no question about the rest of the package, with the interiors largely up to the very high standard seen in Subaru vehicles, and the technology seen for some years now. But in a hybrid sense? More work to be done, we suspect. Pick your Subaru here. http://credit-n.ru/vklady.html

The 3 Most Frustrating Features in Today’s Cars

There is no doubt that cars are getting more sophisticated by the day, offering levels of convenience, practicality and efficiency that we have never seen before. At the same time, however, that hasn’t always necessarily meant that we have enjoyed certain aspects of the latest features fitted into our vehicles. In fact, some of them can be downright annoying sometimes. Let’s take a look at a few of the most frustrating features in today’s cars.

 

 

Overly fiddly infotainment systems

Infotainment systems have become a mainstay in just about every car hitting the road. But if you’ve stepped into another vehicle recently, the first thing you might realise is that not all infotainment systems are created equal.

One of the most frustrating things with certain infotainment systems is just how poor their user interfaces can be. The user experience often hasn’t been the primary design matter. Certain driving and comfort functions may be buried away behind a complex set of layers that require you to dive into settings to access things like air conditioning.

The message to manufacturers here is simple. That is, keep it simple! Sometimes a button or dial is just easier, and let’s just stay away from touch-sensitive controls that really serve no ultimate benefit.

 

Stop-start systems

Sure, they might help optimise the fuel efficiency of the modern-day vehicle, however, stop-start systems aren’t always as beneficial as we might be led to believe. For example, if you are trying to cut across oncoming traffic, or head into a roundabout from a standstill, you want the fastest engine response to kick in.

Even if these systems have improved by leaps and bounds, they will still never quite have the instinctive burst of power that sometimes serves as more than a nicety. We can live with stop-start systems, but please, let us turn it off if necessary.

 

 

Excessive auditory distractions

If there’s one thing we appreciate, that is a friendly reminder. However, once you start to push that case, prompting the same message over and over, it’s only normal human behaviour that we start to ‘switch off’ and ignore that noise. And by ignore, I don’t mean we tune out, because you can’t really not hear something that is effectively barking instructions at you on repeat.

Some of the worst offenders include those chiming sounds that blare out every time your door is open, the sound of the horn when you activate remote locking, seatbelt warnings that ring endlessly when the car is in park or reverse and AI driver assistants that won’t stop talking or simply aren’t good enough for voice recognition….the list goes on.

Is it too much to ask for these signals to be better harnessed for their own efficiency? Can’t we just hear them when they are necessary, rather than every moment the on-board computer thinks they might be necessary? http://credit-n.ru/zaymi-nalichnymi-blog-single.html

Understanding Park Assist Technology

Almost as a pre-cursor to self-driving technology, the advent of park assist technology has largely been an unheralded success. As we continue to mull the role autonomous driving will play in the motoring world, park assistance has effectively found its place within the development of today’s vehicles. With that said, if you’re uncertain about a park-assisted vehicle for your next purchase, here’s what you should know to help you make your decision.

The push for park assist technology has stemmed from the day to day frustrations of parking. Forget the dreaded issue of parallel parking –with the metaphorical flick of a switch, you’re all good. You also need not worry about the prospect of a fender bender in a tight spot – after all, computers will control your vehicle’s movements with precision that even the best drivers wouldn’t be able to match.


The technology is not particularly new either, having been in existence for over 15 years. With what is often a simple touch-screen activated system, sensors scan the sides of the road, parking lots, garages and the like in search of spots that a motorist would be able to park their vehicle. Once a vacant parking spot has been identified, a series of sounds and on-screen images will be used to illustrate the particular situation.

At this point the vehicle’s automated system will be engaged, which relies on the power steering system to override the steering wheel and direct the car into position. If the system is used for guidance instead, the screen will display a series of projectories for the driver to use to align the vehicle into the space -designating control to the driver. In either case however, the driver will be required to adjust the throttle to move the vehicle, and will also have the support of cameras.


Because the technology was initially only fitted to high end vehicles, it never gained widespread adoption and struggled to penetrate into the market. Initial iterations of the technology were also cumbersome and clunky, hence it was no surprise to see extensive development in this area. In fact, several generations of the tech were required to iron out the gremlins and make for a more efficient system. And it wasn’t until this system became more optimised that it found its way to a wider slew of vehicles, including all price points. That is to say, no longer is the technology inefficient, nor is it still restricted to luxury cars.

In some ways, the story and development of park assistance technology looks like it could be replicated via the emergence of self driving technology. And when you consider the growing prominence of technology in our daily lives, it’s hardly a surprise we continue to opt for automated solutions and refine them over time for the mass market to embrace. http://credit-n.ru/offers-zaim/mgnovennye-zaimy-na-kartu-bez-otkazov-kredito24.html