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News

  • Germany’s big three looking for controlling stake in Nokia’s Here mapping service

    BMW, Audi, and Mercedez Benz are set to launch a takeover bid for Nokia's Here mapping division in a bid to stop one of Silicon Valley's powerhouses getting there first. According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, the so-called big three are planning to acquire Here before the likes of Google, Facebook, and Apple are able to. Citing people familiar with the situation, the Journal says that the automakers have banded together in a consortium which includes Chinese search giant Baidu for "considerably more than €2 billion.” Formerly called Ovi Maps, Nokia Here already has a fairly...

  • This autonomous truck just got a license to hit the highways of Nevada

    If you're afraid of autonomous vehicles, you might want to avoid the roads of Nevada. That state has officially granted Daimler trucking subsidiary Freightliner the first license for an autonomous commercial truck to operate on an open public highway in the United States. The Freightliner Inspiration officially got its state plates in a ceremony on Thursday, as part of Daimler Trucking North America's showcase of the developments it's made in autonomous commercial truck technology. While an autonomous truck launch might seem pretty odd amid all the hype around self-driving personal cars, it's actually a pretty big deal. Think about the immense...

  • This video ad of the Audi RS 3’s birth is super powerful [video]

    Audi's hot Sportback busted onto the scene in 2004, but this powerfully gritty video is breathing new life into the latest RS 3 model. The parent? Audi's R8 of course. The German manufacturer -- which revealed the new R8 earlier this year -- states that the sporty beast carries all the fitting characteristics of a parent. If we look at the DNA that is. The specs and pecs of the 2015 RS 3 were outed last year, and have recently started putting the UK's roads to the test. "The new Audi RS 3 Sportback features the latest generation of our 2.5...

  • BMW thinks startups are sexy, builds them a garage

    There's no getting around it: startups are proper sexy. Everywhere you look, cities are trying to attract high-growth tech companies and the founders of companies that haven't made a cent in revenue can sell them for billions of dollars. That excitement is contagious too: just ask BMW. Fresh off comparing its M6 Gran Coupe to the kind of person who wins Entrepreneur of the Year awards, the German marque has announced that it'll be launching its own startup garage programme. According to BMW, the programme is meant to allow startups to effectively collaborate on projects as well as making...

  • Your average 14-year-old French kid could soon be zipping about in a Renault Twizy

    If you were one of those people frustrated at how long it took before you were old enough to get your license, you'll probably find this frustrating. New European legislation means that French children as young as 14 could soon be zipping around the streets in the Renault Twizy. The change in legislation allows 14-year-olds to drive the Twizy, which is officially a light quadricycle, as long as they have a BSR road safety certificate. This is something that was previously reserved for individuals aged 16 and over. Renault likes to bill the Twizy as a...

  • Audi holds off A8 production to build in more autonomous tech

    Audi is set to delay the release of the next-generation A8 luxury sedan until late 2017 in order to equip it with more autonomous technology. According to a report from Autocar, the company is trying to push the limits of piloted technology with the new model A8. Speaking to the UK-based motoring publication, Audi R&D boss Urlich Hackenberg said that the A8 would introduce a series of new technologies including the ability...

  • Kia Optima Sportspace will turn you into a wagon driver

    Two words were never quite used in the same sentence before: Kia and sexy. Now that's definitely about to change. The company has unveiled its Kia Optima Sportspace ahead of its Geneva Motor Show unveiling and it could easily put German wagons of much higher calibre to styling shame. Leaked on Bobaedream.co.kr earlier today, the show car looks stunning slathered in shimmering rouge paint. The interior, although slick and minimalist to say the least, looks ridiculously uncomfortable. But, hell, it's a concept, so the exterior is all that really matters. There are more tangible details available regarding the Sportspace though. There will be...

  • PlayStation GT Academy graduates to pilot Nissan’s Nismo LM GT-R

    Racing in Gran Turismo isn't too different from pounding a real thing around the racetrack, correct? Definitely, at least if you have a look at Welshman Jann Mardenborough and Spaniard Lucas Ordonez's success stories. The pair has been chosen to represent Nissan in one of its two LMP1-spec Nismo LM GT-R cars for this season's World Endurance Championship (in the same company as former Le Mans winner Marc Gene). That's a massive achievement and an even bigger risk from Nissan, who is putting spade of cash into the LM GT-R's campaign. Considering that Mardenborough has just been racing for over...

  • BMW releases Microsoft-like patches to plug ConnectedDrive system holes

    I'm sure mechanics who plied their trade in the mid-Seventies didn't have a clue about computing or hackers for that matter, but we're faced with more practical matters, like clogged carburetors, dead spark plugs and the traditional starter motor annoyance. But now, car technicians have all sorts of issues to worry about. Take BMW's latest press release for example. The company (yes, the car company BMW) has released a patch (yes, a software patch) for its ConnectedDrive in-car infotainment and management system that, if left unchecked, could orchestrate the remote unlocking and opening of a BMW's doors. It should be...

  • Germany opens up section of Autobahn for more autonomous car testing

    The race to deploy the first comercial self-driving cars is on like never before. The German government is showing its commitment to the further research and experimentation of self-driving cars after it just announced it will dedicate a section of the Autobahn (motorway). Testing ground for self-piloted vehicles would enable local automakers such as Mercedes Benz and Audi to better compete with their Western counterparts. As Bloomberg points out, this marks one of the first public highways specifically equipped for this purpose. Probably more important is the fact that this move marks Germany's stance against the likes of strong competitors such...

  • Volvo will pull out of motorsport citing marketing, safety concerns

    If you thought Sweden was a sensible country, the latest news from Volvo will have you seriously doubting that decision. The company has announced that it will chicken out of racing because "Motorsport does not conform with our brand, where we stand for smaller engines and safety," noted marketing head Alain Visser, speaking to Touring Car Times. We're not sure if anyone told him, but Formula 1 uses 1.6-litre hybrid turbocharged motors. Isn't that small enough? We think the move is rather strange for a company that has come to be known for more than it's manic obsession with safety. What does...

  • Egoista EM01 Stradale is the Formula E-inspired car of your dreams

    Crowdfunding is a wonderful thing. It got bankrupt Caterham to the Abu Dhabi GP, and now it could get you a fully fledged open-wheel Formula E-like racing car for just US$10 000. You might want to look away if you just bought a Bugatti Veyron for US$2.5-million. The wonderfully named Egoista EM01 Stradale is for "for adrenaline lovers egocentric people" and comes with pretty much all the bells and whistles you'd expect from an open-wheel Italian racer. The car allegedly tops out at 290km/h and blasts from 0 to 100km/h in just three seconds thanks to a remarkable electric motor and...

  • This radical Slovenian bike by Akrapovič looks completely insane [gallery]

    Every now and then an ambitious concept design hits our radars which usually stay within the confines of pen, paper and animation wizards. It gets really interesting when they are actually crafted and showcased to the world. Recently debuted at the Bad Salzuflen Custom bike Show in Germany, the so-called Full Moon motorcycle took the stage. Designed by Slovinian exhaust manufacturer Akrapovič in partnership with Dreamachine Motorcycles the prototype looks like something the Silver Surfer would drive if he ever got tired of that board. Read more: Emission free cruising on a futuristic snail, anyone? While they only developed one of these prototypes,...

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