2015 Mercedes GLA-Class officially bound for Frankfurt

August 14, 2013
New A-Class Mercedes

New A-Class Mercedes

Forget spy shotsdesign sketches and teaser videos, here is the 2015 Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class. As part of the rapid expansion of its small car offerings, Mercedes-Benz has pulled the cover off this new compact crossover that we’ll be seeing up close and personal at the Frankfurt Motor Show. Sharing a platform with the new A-Class and CLA-Class, the GLA will be the fifth SUV/crossover in the Mercedes lineup when it goes on sale in the US in the fall of next year.

From early prototypes of the GLA, the lineage to the A-Class has been obvious, especially when it comes to styling cues like the shape of the C-pillar, the headlights and the front fenders, but everything else seems to have been beefed up to give the GLA a stronger CUV stance. In terms of its size, the GLA is slightly bigger than the A-Class with dimensions that make it a little longer than the Range Rover Evoque as well as lower and about a foot narrower; based on the info provided from Mercedes, the GLA is very similar to the size of the current Kia Sportage (although that is obviously positioned in a different CUV segment).

There are only four pictures of the GLA’s interior that show just the front portion of the cabin, which appears to be a direct carryover from the A-Class. Mercedes will first launch the GLA250 4Matic, which uses a turbocharged and direct-injected 2.0-liter inline four-cylinder engine producing 208 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque, paired to a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. Performance should be quite impressive – Mercedes promises a 0-60 time of 6.4 seconds. In 2015, front-wheel-drive versions of the GLA250 will go on sale, but there is still no official word on the GLA45 AMGScroll down for more details about the 2015 Mercedes GLA-Class from the official press release.

 More here …

 


Yes I have One OF These

August 6, 2013

It’s called “radar adaptive cruise control”, it’s a 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee which is just a cheep Mercedes ML in disguise. Had it for near two years … It’s great. Jeep and Mercedes blended their technology contributions long before Chrysler went bust. What did Mercedes want the 4 wheel drive technology and suspension that jeep had, what did Jeep want the body structure and technology that Mercedes had.

So the two companies traded. And what emerged was the new Jeep Grand Cherokee. It is nothing like the decades older version and is completely modern. The dash even has iPhone technology which talks to you when your phone is in the car.

So to the point comes Radar Adaptive Cruise Control. Well it already saved me from a crash when another car darted out in front of me and without touching the brakes the car computers did all the work, slowed the car even before I could react, and prevented a crash. It works best when cruising the freeway, where cars speed up and slow down, and detecting those subtle speed changes can be taxing.

The robot car was born, not really autonomous driving but a start.

The radar adaptive cruise control, and it’s amazingly good … makes me feel like autonomous cars are closer than I thought, though there are many bugs to iron out before we get that far.

Wired has this story : The Ethics of Saving Lives With Autonomous Cars Are Far Murkier Than You Think

Autonomous driving … It’s all far closer to reality than you might think.

 


Chrysler Readies Nine-Speed Auto Transmissions to Cut Fuel Consumption

November 23, 2012

Pre-dates Obama and his stupid EPA … It’s been known for decades how to do this, just space out the gears for lower of-the-line grunt, then lower the cruise RPM with overdrive ratios for better fuel economy. The new Mercedes designed Chrysler built 3.6 liter six is the perfect engine for this match-up.

Jeep Grand Cherokee is set for the 8-speed up grade this coming January.

A 16% improvement in fuel efficiency is expected from nine-speed transmission

Automakers are pulling out all the stops and looking to squeeze every single mile per gallon out of their automobiles by any means necessary. Automakers are looking at more fuel-efficient engines with smaller displacements, but they’re also looking at reducing the weight of vehicles and increasing the number of forward gears used in car/truck transmissions.

Adding forward gears to a transmission makes a lot of sense because the slower the engine spins, the less fuel it consumes. In years past automatic transmissions used in vehicles commonly had four or five forward gears. More recent vehicles are moving up to six-speed and in some cases even eight-speed automatic transmissions in luxury vehicles. Chrysler is eyeing even more gears inside with nine-speed gearboxes for more mainstream vehicles.

According to Mircea Gradu, vice president transmission powertrain driveline engineering, Chrysler will roll out its first nine-speed transmission by the first half of 2013. “I’m convinced that, sooner or later, others will come up with similar solutions,” Gradu said in an interview from his office in Auburn Hills, Michigan, where Chrysler is based. “Hopefully, the time will be as long as possible until they catch up with the technology.”

Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne believes that the automaker and its various brands will be able to meet looming fuel-efficiency standards by using technology that improves traditional gasoline engines combined with better transmissions rather than moving to plug-in hybrids and pure electric vehicles. CAFE standards will reach 54.5 mpg by 2025.

Michael Omotoso, a powertrain analyst at LMC Automotive, said, “They’re [Chrysler] doing basically the bare minimum to satisfy government regulations. Their strategy is to meet the standards with minimum investment.”

Bloomberg reports that the nine-speed transmission Chrysler is developing could boost fuel economy of certain models by as much as 16%. Chrysler has already scored a 15% boost in the highway fuel economy of the Chrysler 300 and Dodge Charger by adding an eight-speed automatic transmission.

Source: Business Week


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