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Auto ExpressAuto Express

Auto Express 1566

The weekly magazine that brings all the news and reviews for all the UK's Cars

Country:
United Kingdom
Language:
English
Publisher:
Dennis Publishing UK
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51 Issues

IN THIS ISSUE

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car companies that don’t partner won’t survive

AMONG the many important reveals and announcements at this year’s Geneva Motor Show, finding myself sitting in front of Mercedes’ research and development boss (and soon-to-be CEO) Ola Källenius and his BMW R&D counterpart Klaus Fröhlich was a real pinch-yourself moment. Here were two giants of the industry, working for rival firms, talking about cooperating on future technologies. Yes, working together: BMW and Mercedes. The two companies will be developing autonomous vehicle technology, combining expertise, sharing costs and, according to Källenius, “bringing more power, speed and quality to what we’re trying to develop”. “Some of the new technologies in avenues like this are hugely exciting and will bring huge benefits to our customers we couldn’t dream about 10 years ago,” he said. Car companies have been developing complicated technologies in parallel for years, though.…

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stunning alfa tonale targets q3

Richard_Ingram@dennis.co.uk @rsp_ingram • Italian brand takes aim at Audi with striking new SUV concept • Based on Jeep Renegade platform; on sale by end of next year IT was less than a year ago that Alfa Romeo promised it would introduce a new compact SUV, and at this year’s Geneva Motor Show we got our first look at the Italian firm’s Audi Q3 rival. Called Tonale (pronounced ‘To-na-le’), the SUV is only a concept for now, but bosses have confirmed that a production version of the show car will slot into the company’s range below the Stelvio and be in dealerships by the end of next year. The Tonale concept looks very much like a shrunken Stelvio, and its features include a distinctive nose with an extended front overhang, the traditional Alfa shield grille and…

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new, bigger model set to replace mito

ELSEWHERE at Alfa, the firm will replace its ageing MiTo supermini with a new, larger vehicle, bosses have revealed. The MiTo (above) hasn’t proven as popular or as profitable as the Italian brand expected, so a total rethink of the entry-level model is under way. “I think we need an entry-level car. This is something we are working on,” Alfa’s European boss Roberta Zerbi told Auto Express. “I’m not sure it is going to be a MiTo, but it will be an entry-level car; a five-door is more appropriate.” A more practical model could help Alfa realise its ambition of selling 400,000 vehicles per year. However, Zerbi would not be drawn on whether the new model would be a crossover.…

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wraps are off surprise ‘electric panda’

James_Brodie@dennis.co.uk @jimmybrods IF Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) stole this year’s Geneva Motor Show, Fiat was the main reason, revealing a 120th-anniversary concept with more than just a nod towards one of its most iconic models. The Centoventi concept (its name means 120 in Italian) was kept secret from the press until the eve of the show – an increasingly rare feat these days. However, the car’s form – a futuristic, electric Panda – was only evident once the sheets came off. How seriously should we take it? Quite, if the soundbites from Fiat bosses and the concept’s project name – CC4, meaning ‘City Car 4th Generation’ – are anything to go by. But the Centoventi story may be more complicated than just being the next Panda. Measuring 3,680mm long, 1,527mm tall and 1,740mm wide, it’s…

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opinion

News editor, Auto Express FIAT, apparently, is the forgotten brand in the Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) empire, despite its name implying it is the backbone of the car giant. Its sales are propped up entirely by the 500 city car and Panda, both of which are looking rather outdated. So what better way to inject some excitement into the brand than parade a dinky, retro concept car? Honda did exactly the same thing to maximum effect at Geneva last year with the Urban EV. The Centoventi’s relative simplicity harks back to Fiats of old, so here’s hoping bosses see sense and put it into production.…

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fiat’s electric 500 is shaping up

James_Brodie@dennis.co.uk @jimmybrods A NEW Fiat 500 will be presented at the 2020 Geneva Motor Show, with a very clear buyer in mind: luxury consumers. Fiat is plotting a bold reinvention of the car, with no internal combustion engines. The new range – previewed in our exclusive images – will be entirely electric, and redesigned to appeal to the current 500’s increasingly upmarket customer base. “Premium is the way we will go with the EV 500,” explained the head of Fiat and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ chief marketing officer, Olivier Francois. “A new 500, totally renewed. A new object. Totally electric. It’s kind of an urban Tesla, with beautiful style.” The Fiat boss confirmed that the next 500 will use a brand new platform designed for electrification. “It makes the car radically different,” he said. “It’s still…

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