Since taking control of the Swedish brand several years ago, Chinese manufacturer Zhejiang Geely has been hard at work reinventing Volvo as an automobile for the 21st century. The product of several years’ and billions of dollars’ worth of research and development, Volvo’s new line of Drive-E powertrains is the first step toward that goal, utilizing forward-thinking technology to provide improved performance and fuel economy. Continue reading “Volvo Introduces New Drive-E Powertrains — Car News” »
Drivers looking for a quiet ride will be happy to hear that Bose noise-cancelling technology is now available in all vehicles, including those without Bose sound systems. Bose collaborated with NXP Semiconductors N.V. on the noise-cancelling chip, which blocks unwanted engine and powertrain sounds. Using cabin-mounted microphones, Bose Active Sound Management targets a narrow band of low-frequency engine sounds and cancels them via acoustically opposite signals sent through the car’s existing stereo system. The program responds only when necessary, and is uniquely configured for each vehicle. While the chip can work with any sound system in the appropriate frequency range, car owners will also need to install the necessary noise-capturing microphones.
Toyota unveiled a slew of new active safety systems at a recent Tokyo event. Focusing on collision avoidance and reducing driver workload, the intelligent new technology is still in the development stage; however, the systems should see widespread distribution in many Toyota models in coming years. Among the upgraded amenities are 180-degree front and rear cameras with cross traffic detection and a parking assist system that automatically directs vehicles into parking spaces without the need for driver steering. The improved pedestrian collision avoidance system not only automatically stops the car in the event of an emergency; it also steers the vehicle away from the pedestrian as much as possible without leaving the lane.
The U.S. Department of Energy and the EPA recently introduced stickers that show the fuel economy and emissions of used cars and trucks, similar to those found on new vehicles. Available for download from fueleconomy.gov, the web-friendly labels can also be posted online, and are designed for use by both dealerships and private sellers. Users can search for vehicles from the 1984 model year and newer; unfortunately, information for used plug-in hybrids and electrics is not yet unavailable.
Working in the world of chefs and restaurants, I see the name “Lexus” very often. The car company, which started with two luxury sedans in 1989, loves food. Over the years, it has become a sponsor of major culinary events throughout the country.