Audi introduces Falken AZENIS RS820 as an option for its new S3

Audi’s new S3 is the first vehicle to leave its factory with Falken’s super-ultra high-performance (SUHP) tyre, the AZENIS RS820. Owing to its standard quattro all wheel drive plus torque splitter, Audi’s compact sports car delivers 333 HP and 420 Nm torque – demanding a high-performance tyre such as Falken’s most advanced SUHP pattern.

The Falken AZENIS RS820 was designed with accurate handling, stability and control under all driving conditions in mind. The AZENIS RS820 features an asymmetric tread pattern with four circumferential tread grooves. An improved shoulder design offers increased contact with the road and enhanced lateral stability on dry roads.

Falken AZENIS RS820 Audi S3

The tyre draws on the latest compound and construction technologies derived from Falken’s motorsport developments such as its hybrid aramid reinforcement material. An optimised belt ply provides an even pressure distribution, allowing for a dynamic driving experience with improved safety.

The circumferential tread ribs of the AZENIS RS820 not only provide improved lateral grip while cornering, but also ensure stable straight-line stability. The grooves are wide and deep to displace water and prevent aquaplaning.

Tread design and construction are but one striking aspect of Falken’s latest and highest performing product, the other being the Advanced 4D NANO Design technology used to create compounds with lower wear rates and offer a longer lifespan. With weight also a key factor when it comes to high-performance vehicles, Falken’s engineers explored all weight-saving possibilities – both in construction and compound.

The overall result provides robust driving properties across a broad range of a road surfaces and conditions, both wet and dry. Falken supplies the 235/35 R19 tyres fitted to both the S3 Sportback and the S3 Saloon manufactured in Ingolstadt, Germany.

“We are proud that our new AZENIS RS820 is the first choice for the new Audi S3,” says Christian Stolting, OE Sales Director at Falken Tyre Europe. “Right from the start, we aimed at designing a tyre that combines dynamic driving, agile handling and a powerful performance. AZENIS RS820 meets the strict requirements of Audi’s enthusiastic engineers and showcases Falken’s abilities in the SUHP range.”

Falken has already introduced 38 sizes of the AZENIS RS820 model to the European market. Other sizes are coming soon.

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HARMAN and CARIAD Announce Growing Ecosystem with New Apps Within Volkswagen Group Vehicles

Companies showcase continued momentum with new app experiences

Berlin – 3 July 2024 – HARMAN, alongside CARIAD, the automotive software company of Volkswagen Group, today announced new collaborations across key industries to enrich the in-cabin experience with newly available apps. This expands the range of apps available in the Group Application Store, a uniform in-car application store for cars of the Volkswagen Group brands, to more than 70 depending on the model and market.

The Group Application Store integrates with the HARMAN Ignite Store, a solution for automotive infotainment systems that allows OEMs to maintain control of third-party content, the user experience and relationship with the end user. Audi has already implemented the store in select Audi models and regions from model year 2024 onwards and will also integrate it in the all-new Audi Q6 e-tron that will start coming to customers this August, with additional Volkswagen Group brands to follow. Both HARMAN and CARIAD will showcase the Group Application Store to the Android Developer community at DroidCon Berlin from 3-5 July 2024.

New apps soon available in the Group Application Store include:

  • Booking.com – The Booking.com app helps users find great hotel or apartment deals and book in just a few minutes. Users can also book flights, rental cars, and more through the app.
  • Eventseeker – Eventseeker is a personalised in-car event service designed to minimise search time and maximise discovery. The app provides detailed information on concerts, sports, theatre, comedy, festivals, and cultural events in any city. Whether you’re new to a city or a local, Eventseeker uses your music preferences to recommend events tailored to your interests, no matter where you are.
  • livil – The ‘In-Car Messenger’ from livil offers drivers access to all their favourite communication and work channels in one integrated app. Utilising voice and assisted by Gen AI, the driver’s typical communication processes are streamlined and semi-automated.
  • Shelly Smart Control – The Shelly Smart Control app offers customers a seamless IoT experience for enhanced automation control and precise monitoring of all Shelly devices from around the world. The application allows users to keep track of their current energy usage with ease and get a forecast of their monthly electricity bills for better budgeting.
  • Tennis TV – Tennis TV is ATP Media’s direct-to-consumer streaming service—which first launched in 2006—and delivers a rich experience to a global audience of tennis fans, all-year-round from every ATP Tour tournament. Users can live stream up to 2,500 matches a year—all available as full replays on-demand—plus, match highlights, classic matches dating back to 1990 and behind the scenes interviews and features. Watch live and on-demand, with a subscription, on computers, mobile and tablets, Smart TVs and other streaming devices—and now in your Audi.

HARMAN is collaborating with additional companies to offer even more apps in the future, including:

  • Bloomberg – HARMAN and Bloomberg are collaborating to expand the ways Bloomberg audiences can stay informed. The Bloomberg app allows users to listen to Bloomberg Radio, podcasts and text-to-audio stories from Bloomberg.com on their display screens in compatible cars.
  • Microsoft – HARMAN is collaborating with Microsoft to bring new content and experiences to the HARMAN Ignite Store. Together, both companies are kicking off their collaboration by bringing Microsoft Teams experiences to automotive through a web conferencing app that HARMAN has built and directly connects users to Teams meetings through the in-vehicle calendar.

The HARMAN Ignite Store is a safe and secure automotive platform, fully compliant with Android Automotive Operating System (AAOS) standards that connects OEMs with developers to provide consumers unique in-vehicle digital experiences. Consumers can connect with their favourite digital services in the car, through an intuitive, safe and secure interface. With the HARMAN Ignite Store, OEMs and developers can realise lucrative digital revenue streams via new business models while creating a stand-out and personalised driver experience for their customers. With a legacy of extensive automotive expertise, HARMAN provides Android developers with the resources needed to enter and thrive in the automotive market. Together with CARIAD, it’s easier than ever for developers to join the Volkswagen Group ecosystem and leverage the combined expertise of both leading companies.

“As a fully compliant Android Automotive OS app store, HARMAN Ignite Store continues to bring new app experiences into the vehicle, delivering on what consumers expect today,” said Jens Beckmann, Senior Director and Business Lead for Store & FOD at HARMAN International. “Our growing ecosystem of apps spans diverse sectors, ensuring there is something for everyone.”

Located at the City Cube Berlin, HARMAN and CARIAD will be on-site at DroidCon Berlin at booth 18 showcasing the latest innovations and highlighting how strategic collaborations are driving the automotive industry forward.

For more information on the HARMAN Ignite Store, including specific platform capabilities and submitting an APK, visit https://car.harman.com/solutions/harman-ignite/store.

App providers share their enthusiasm for this collaboration:

Mark van der Linden, VP Partnerships, Booking.com: “Here at Booking.com, we are proud to make our app available to more travellers, thanks to our collaboration with CARIAD and HARMAN. We’re providing users with the convenience of booking flights, accommodation, and more on-the-go.”

“With Eventseeker, we’re thrilled to unlock a world of event possibilities right from your vehicle,” said Fraser Campbell, CEO at Wcities. “Imagine discovering events tailored to your location and musical tastes, transforming your day, evening, or weekend into something extraordinary. Thanks to the HARMAN Ignite Store and its seamless development capabilities, we’re able to offer experiences that were previously out of reach. It’s all about making every moment more enjoyable and exciting.”

“The livil team is happy to collaborate and innovate with both CARIAD and HARMAN,” said Nils Frers, CEO at livil. “With livil’s ‘In-Car Messenger’, drivers of Volkswagen Group vehicles will receive first access to the platform, which has been purpose-built around the opportunities and requirements unique to driving.”

“The seamless integration of our Shelly Smart Control app within HARMAN Ignite Store enables customers to have the ultimate automation experience. As a result of our partnership, millions of users can enjoy our advanced application via the familiar user interface of their vehicle’s own infotainment system,” said Wolfgang Kirsch, CEO of Shelly Group.

Raj Paul, Senior Director, Manufacturing and Mobility Industry at Microsoft said, “We’re pleased to collaborate with HARMAN Ignite Store and CARIAD to address the needs of hybrid workers. A new integration between the companies allows HARMAN to provide safe use of Microsoft Teams meeting functionality while on the road.”

“ATP Media is delighted to be working with CARIAD and HARMAN, two companies who share a similar ethos to ATP Media of striving for technological advancement, to be able to bring Tennis TV to even more tennis fans,” said Stuart Taylor, Director of Consumer Streaming at ATP Media. “As the direct-to-consumer streaming service of the ATP Tour, Tennis TV is always looking for ways to grow the game for fans, broadcast partners and other stakeholders, and having Tennis TV available via the HARMAN Ignite Store is a great step forward.”

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10 to 80 per cent charge in under five minutes – Nyobolt EV sportscar prototype takes ultra-fast charging out of the lab and onto the road

  • Nyobolt’s ultra-fast charging batteries that eliminate slow and inconvenient recharge stops, move from the lab to the track
  • Just 12 months after revealing the concept, a driveable Nyobolt EV prototype, engineered together with CALLUM, will advance testing of the technology in the real world, enabling OEMs to experience Nyobolt’s ultra-fast charging technology first hand
  • Initial testing of the Nyobolt EV using a 350kW DC charger has shown its batteries can charge from 10 to 80 per cent in under five minutes, twice the speed of the fastest-charging vehicles on the road without the degradation typically associated with lithium-ion batteries
  • Independent testing of Nyobolt’s technology by a leading global OEM confirms that Nyobolt’s longer lasting and more sustainable batteries can achieve over 4,000 fast charge cycles, or 600,000 miles, maintaining over 80 per cent battery capacity retention
  • Nyobolt is in talks with eight OEMs about using its technology in high performance EVs
  • Download high resolution images and video here

28 June 2024 - Nyobolt is taking its high-power density, fast-charging battery technology from the lab into the real world by revealing the first running Nyobolt EV prototype. Designed and engineered with CALLUM, the Nyobolt EV will be used to both validate the company’s battery performance in a high-performance environment, as well as allow car makers to witness an elevated customer experience where inconvenient charging downtime is thing of the past.

10-80 per cent state of charge achieved just under five minutes

Founded in 2019, Cambridge-based Nyobolt has leveraged its next-generation patented carbon and metal oxide anode materials, innovative low impedance cell design, integrated power electronics and software controls to create power dense battery and charging systems. These support the electrification of high-uptime industrial and automotive applications such as heavy-duty off-highway trucks, EVs, robotics and consumer devices that demand high power and quick recharge cycles.

Initial in-vehicle testing this month using powerful 350kW (800V) DC fast chargers has already confirmed that Nyobolt EV’s 50Ah 35kWh battery can be charged from 10 per cent to 80 per cent in four minutes 37 seconds – with a full 100 per cent charge enabling the prototype to achieve a range of 155 WLTP miles. That is twice the speed of most of the fastest charging vehicles today. Furthermore, as the first four minutes are at a constant current of 500A, this would provide 120 miles of range.

Nyobolt EV Charging

Longer lasting performance batteries offer over 600,000-miles life

Nyobolt’s technology also solves the levels of degradation that typically come with supercharging lithium-ion batteries. Nyobolt’s 24.5Ah cells have already successfully completed over 4,000 full DoD (Depth of Discharge) fast charge cycles, equating to over 600,000 miles if used in the Nyobolt EV pack, while still retaining over 80 per cent battery capacity. This is many multiples higher than the warranties of much larger EV batteries on the road today.

Independent OEM testing has confirmed its 2.6Ah cells can achieve over 4,400 cycles with a 12C charge and 1C discharge at 23°C. Crucially, the cell internal resistance rises by only 50 per cent after 4,400 five-minute charge cycles. This is lower than the industry accepted end of life values for EV cells, which is typically twice the initial value.

“Despite some OEMs showing fast charge times in the region of 15 minutes, a closer inspection reveals the charge is usually across a limited SOC region specifically chosen to limit the amount of life taken out of the cell; for instance, between 20-80 per cent,” says Nyobolt’s co-founder and CEO, Dr Sai Shivareddy. “Typically, the charge profile will only hold these peak charge levels for a short amount of the charge time. Nyobolt’s low impedance cells ensure we can offer sustainability, stretching out the battery’s usable life for up to 600,000 miles in the case of our technology demonstrator.”

Nyobolt EV Electronics

Enabling lighter EVs for the enthusiast

The 35kWh battery pack in the Nyobolt EV prototype not only adds miles faster but the compact battery pack size benefits car makers and motorists, enabling energy efficient electric vehicles that are cheaper to buy and run, and crucially use fewer resources to manufacture.

It’s no accident that the Nyobolt EV is a sports car weighing just 1,250kg; it underlines that Nyobolt can also enable the automotive industry to return lighter, better handling sports cars. “We can enable OEMs to build excitement back into the segment, which is literally weighed down by legacy battery technology currently,” says Shane Davies, Nyobolt’s director of vehicle battery systems.

Nyobolt EV Rear Three Quarter

“Our Nyobolt EV demonstrates the efficiency gains facilitated by our fast-charging, longer-life battery technology, enabling capacity to be right-sized while still delivering the required performance,” adds Davies. “Nyobolt is removing the obstacle of slow and inconvenient charging, making electrification appealing and accessible to those who don’t have the time for lengthy charging times or space for a home charger.”

Nyobolt EV Dynamic 3

Scalable battery production already planned

Whilst the priority use for this Nyobolt EV is showcasing and testing the battery technology, CALLUM’s team has engineered it so that low volume production – for road or track use – is possible. Nyobolt’s battery assembly plans are more advanced and could be in production at low volume within a year, ramping to 1,000 packs in 2025. Nyobolt’s flexible manufacturing model enables volumes of up to two million cells per year. Nyobolt’s battery will also comply with the EU’s Battery Regulation requirements once in production.

Nyobolt EV Profile

Bringing the benefits to existing EVs

The Nyobolt EV’s architecture also highlights how it could be retrofitted to existing EV platforms, bringing a step change in charge time and battery cycling life. The Nyobolt EV’s battery modules are cooled via cold plates with a water/glycol mix. The battery circuit uses an AC compressor and condenser as well as a battery chiller compatible with other performance vehicles, resulting in a near standard module and battery pack. The limited heat generation – no more than 60°C during a fast charge or a performance drive – is influenced in the main by the ultra-low impedance cell chemistry.

Unique battery chemistry developed and refined in the UK

Nyobolt’s technology builds on a decade of battery research led by University of Cambridge battery scientists Professor Clare Grey CBE and Dr Sai Shivareddy, who had invented cutting-edge supercapacitors. Key to Nyobolt’s unique ability to offer ultra-fast charging without impacting battery life is its low impedance cells that generate less heat, making it easier to manage such high-power levels during charging. Its anode materials in lithium-ion battery cells allow for a faster transfer of electrons between the anode and cathode.

Nyobolt EV Front Three Quarter

Strong interest in automotive and beyond

Nyobolt is already in conversation with a further eight vehicle OEMs about adopting its technology. Alongside automotive applications, Nyobolt’s fast-charging technology is set to be deployed this year in robotics. Other applications seeking low downtime and high productivity, such as heavy-duty commercial vehicles, are also advancing.

“Our extensive research here in the UK and US has unlocked a novel battery technology that is ready and scalable right now,” concludes Shivareddy. “We are enabling the electrification of new products and services currently considered inviable or impossible. Creating real-world demonstrators, such as the Nyobolt EV, underlines both our readiness and commitment to making the industries see change is possible.”

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Nyobolt co-founder and CEO, Dr Sai Shivareddy

Nyobolt co-founder and CEO, Dr Sai Shivareddy

Nyobolt EV Interior

ZF Drives Commercial Vehicles Innovation to Shape the Future of Transportation

  • ZF announces new TraXon 2 Hybrid transmission
  • E-Mobility advancements: ZF’s open-drive approach enables it to continue leading the charge in offering decarbonised solutions
  • ZF’s industry leading portfolio of products and system solutions enabled the company to outperform the market in 202

Friedrichshafen, Germany. ZF’s Commercial Vehicles Solutions division continues to set the pace for commercial vehicles technology by developing a new hybrid transmission to further support the transition towards decarbonised mobility. Forming part of the industry leading TraXon family, the TraXon 2 Hybrid from ZF will enable commercial vehicle operators to significantly reduce carbon emissions while still maintaining the capability advantages of a combustion engine.

With its extensive experience in developing hybrid technologies for passenger cars, ZF has the R&D capabilities to adapt these technologies into viable, cost-effective solutions for commercial vehicles. ZF’s ability to offer technological advancements across different mobility applications enables the CVS division to develop and produce key technologies for the commercial vehicles industry.

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“In developing the TraXon 2 Hybrid, we demonstrate how synergies across our divisions enable us to address customer needs swiftly and flexibly to create viable, cost-effective technologies to decarbonise commercial vehicles efficiently,” said Professor Dr. Peter Laier, Member of the ZF Board of Management and responsible for the Commercial Vehicle Solutions Division.

“In doing so, we not only meet the shifting needs of the industry but also position ZF as a strong and reliable partner that is setting the pace of transformation with a very flexible portfolio and very flexible production.”

One key advantage for ZF is its extensive product portfolio which caters to the diverse needs and applications of commercial vehicles manufacturers and fleet operators. From the innovative vehicle motion control system cubiX to the launch of a full range of next generation electric drives: ZF has always the ability to develop and industrialise innovation across its divisions – or even within the CVS division itself for different mobility applications. This enables ZF to offer attractive solutions for manufacturers to develop smarter, safer and more sustainable vehicles.

This strength, combined with its broad portfolio of products, has enabled the CVS division to record strong results in 2023, achieving organic growth of 20%, significantly outperforming the market which grew by 15%.

Towards zero emissions

With its next generation electric drivelines, ZF electrifies a wide range of commercial vehicle applications by offering different and technology open solutions for battery electric or fuel cell vehicles. Its E-Mobility Kit, which includes central drives, CeTrax 2 and CeTrax 2 dual, as well as its electric axles, the AxTrax 2, AxTrax 2 dual and AxTrax 2 LF, provides everything manufacturers need to produce zero emissions electric vehicles.

The AxTrax 2 can even be integrated into a trailer, ZF’s latest concept that effectively converts an ICE powered truck-trailer combination into a hybrid. The electric trailer can also extend the range of an electric vehicle. The concept, which is awaiting regulatory approval, can save fuel emissions by up to 16%, and even up to 40% when the plug-in variant is used.

The company also presented its new innovative Braking and e-Drive Synergy Program at the ZF Global Technology Day. The system optimises the connection between the electric drive and the EBS brake control. The additional braking energy is used for recuperation, increases the vehicle’s range and also enables smoother launch capabilities.

Digitalisation solutions

SCALAR, ZF’s digital fleet orchestration platform, enables fleet managers to orchestrate their operations through real-time, AI-based automated decision-making and efficiency improvement tools. OEMs can also benefit from data insights from SCALAR to measure the performance of their vehicles in real world settings. The platform can operate with human-driven and automated vehicles.

ZF’s cubiX vehicle motion control system for commercial vehicle applications translates driving instructions from virtual driver systems into real vehicle motion commands by the vehicle actuators. This ensures vehicle stability, safety, precision, and performance for CV configurations, including conventional and electric. The system was recently successfully tested in the field under real-life conditions with customers and partners, such as SAFE20 ‑ a project for automated freight yard operation.

Therefore, ZF simplifies in-vehicle implementation for customers thanks to its deep understanding and expertise for integration and system engineering, to enable ready-to-automate vehicle motion control and pave the way towards the software-defined-vehicle.

Towards Zero Accidents

ZF continues to excel in the domain of advanced safety systems. Offering the commercial vehicles industry the broadest product portfolio, ZF is uniquely positioned to supply these technologies, from individual components to full system-wide solutions. Leveraging its safety platforms, ZF is able to supply the solutions required by customers to meet regional safety regulations. ZF was also able to take advantage of its technical expertise like radar and camera from its passenger car divisions, another demonstration of how ZF’s commercial vehicles division benefits from the shared competences from the other automotive divisions in the ZF Group.

ZF’s SCALAR gains enhanced cargo visibility with Shippeo

  • SCALAR, ZF’s innovative orchestration platform, enhances cargo tracking by leveraging Shippeo
  • Carriers benefit from highly accurate real-time operational visibility over their flows, and predictive Estimated Time of Arrival (ETA) information
  • Adding subcontractor visibility independent of telematics solution

Friedrichshafen, Germany. ZF’s SCALAR orchestration platform offers advanced cargo track-and-trace capabilities, powered by leveraging Shippeo’s multimodal real-time transportation visibility solution. This enhanced platform provides carriers with highly accurate, real-time visibility of their consignments, enabling them to build more resilient and customer-centric supply chains.

The collaboration effectively integrates Shippeo’s advanced tracking technologies spanning road, air, and ocean shipments into ZF’s SCALAR orchestration platform. By providing real-time and predictive visibility, logistics providers can minimise potential delays while optimising line-haul and delivery efficiencies and improve on-time deliveries.

Hjalmar van Raemdonck, ZF’s VP SCALAR in the division Commercial Vehicle Solutions said: “The integration of Shippeo’s real-time visibility into the SCALAR orchestration platform helps to simplify the complexities of modern logistics, enabling carriers to strengthen the resilience and reliability of their line-haul networks. By providing an additional layer of visibility, our logistics customers will be able to orchestrate their fleets with enhanced precision, enabling them to optimise routes, minimise delays, and improve overall supply chain efficiency.”

Pierre Khoury, CEO & Co-founder Shippeo: “We’re incredibly proud to collaborate with a global automotive leader like ZF. By leveraging Shippeo’s advanced visibility platform, ZF will be empowered to optimise carrier transportation capacity, ensuring on-time delivery at the best possible price.  Furthermore, Shippeo’s end-to-end visibility will provide ZF with a more sustainable supply chain.”

Integrating cargo visibility into SCALAR provides carriers equal real-time ETA visibility for both trailer and truck. Carriers relying solely on trailer tracking solutions find it particularly advantageous, especially when trailers are picked up by different trucks, whether equipped with telematics or not. With the Shippeo integration carriers also gain valuable insights into subcontractor performance, enabling them to streamline their operational processes. Furthermore carriers have easy access to accurate CO2 emission reports per transport order, enabling them to reduce their environmental impact.

New Falken ZIEX ZE320 offers ‘very strong performance’ with improved environmental credentials

Falken has launched its latest tyre, the ZIEX ZE320, which uses sustainable rice husk silica – reducing greenhouse gas emissions and aligning with Sumitomo Rubber Industries’ ‘Driving Our Future Challenge 2050’.

While the Falken ZIEX ZE310 Ecorun tyre continues to deliver excellent results in comparative tests, Falken has been hard at work hard developing its successor – which promises to be even better.

As the replacement for the ZIEX ZE310, the new Falken ZIEX ZE320 drops the ‘Ecorun’ suffix yet will be more environmentally friendly than its predecessor. The first twelve sizes of the new tyre are due to arrive in Europe in early summer 2024, with a further 48 sizes set to be added by spring 2025.

The 60 planned sizes will span 15 to 18 inches, with a maximum W speed rating of up to 270 km/h (“H” and “V” variants also feature). The new, more sustainable pattern is produced in Turkey and features a more environmentally friendly filler – derived from rice husks.

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Drawing on over 30 years of research and development in the use of silica in tyres, developers have been able to balance good wet weather grip with low wear rates and longer life, as well as further exemplifying Falken and parent company Sumitomo Rubber Industries’ (SRI) long-term sustainability policy, ‘Driving Our Future Challenge 2050’.

Typically extracted from special varieties of sand, silica can also be found in rice husks – an agricultural by-product of which over 100 million tonnes are generated globally each year.

The process of extracting this inorganic substance from the ashes of burnt organic material produces lower greenhouse gas emissions than obtaining the same raw material from sand. The heat created during the process can also be converted into electrical energy and used downstream in other processing tasks. As a result, less CO2 is generated during the production of rice-based silica than during conventional production of a filler material.

A pre-production version of the new Falken ZIEX ZE320 has already impressed the trade media during a competitive product test. In March, testers noted the progress: “With its successor to the ZE310 Ecorun, Falken appears to have achieved great success.

“In initial tests, the new product has made significant advances in every area and achieved a very strong performance overall. Even without “Ecorun” in its name, its rolling resistance is noticeably lower,” lauded the journalists of Auto Zeitung magazine – and motorists will soon be able to experience these benefits themselves with first deliveries arriving at dealers in the coming months.

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NIO reveals all-new EL8 – a smart, safe and more sustainable luxury SUV for Europe

  • All-new NIO EL8 is a smarter, safer and more sustainable luxury six-seat SUV equipped with technology to enhance the user experience
  • Packed with class-leading innovations such as the most powerful mass-produced mobile computing platform to date, ‘light bending’ LED lights and dual chamber air suspension
  • Thoughtful inclusion of sustainable design and materials, including the world’s first plant-based woven suede, soybean foam and rattan
  • Low 0.25 Cd drag co-efficient to take you further
  • 100 kWh Long Range battery, 480 kW dual motor and all-wheel-drive powertrain offers punchy performance to achieve 0-100 km/h in 4.1 seconds and up to 510 km WLTP range
  • EL8 will be available in Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden
  • Download high resolution images and video here

June 14, 2024, Munich – NIO has revealed its all-new luxury six-seat SUV, EL8. The smart, safe and more sustainable EL8 will be available in Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands and Sweden for the first time, as well as Norway, where the previous generation paved the way for the brand’s entry into Europe.

A warm and progressive space for luxury
At 5,099 mm long, 1,750 mm tall, 2,199 mm wide and with an expansive 3,070 mm wheelbase, EL8 offers generous space for six to travel in comfort. Two models will be available, each with a distinct second row layout. The first features a Centre Aisle, 14-way rear seats and wide armrest. The Executive Console model benefits from a smart refrigerator and console housed between the second row 12-way Ottoman reclining seats. Continuing the theme of ultimate luxury, the Executive model also offers a Hot Stone Massage experience in the first and second seat rows as standard.

EL8’s intelligent and reassuring all-wheel-drive system employs 180 kW SiC permanent magnet and 300 kW induction motors with the world’s first dual three-phase topology inverter to improve peak performance and reliability. Delivering 850 Nm of torque, 0-100 km/h is swiftly achieved in just 4.1 seconds. Its Long Range (100 kWh) swappable battery can achieve a range of 510 km WLTP. A Standard Range 75 kWh battery is also available.

NIO2

Smart safety
NIO’s global engineering team prioritised active and passive safety from the outset of EL8’s conception with much of this development undertaken in NIO’s engineering facility in Oxford, UK. Comprising of 90 per cent aluminium alloy, EL8’s body features front and rear crumple zones that cover 72 per cent of the vehicle’s width for effective dissipation of energy. A total of 24 safety and assisted driving features offer reassuring levels of accident prevention for occupants and road users. In addition there is Smart Safety System – a first for NIO. Depending on the user position and the severity of the crash, the Smart Safety System adjusts the ignition airbag timing and seat belt force limit to better protect the occupants. It is complemented by an array of seven airbags including a 2,800 mm long side air curtain that extends protection to the rear occupants. EL8 also features a front centre airbag: NIO is the only brand to offer this as standard across its entire European range. The EL8’s robust battery is tested to withstand temperatures of up to 590°C for up to 130 seconds, a one-metre drop test and zero ingress during saltwater immersion.

Behind the 20” standard rims (21” and 22” options are available), EL8’s confidence-inspiring brake system, featuring six piston front callipers and Bosch’s Intelligent Park Brake (IPB), offers precise control, generating a maximum braking force within just 150 milliseconds. Response times for the traction control system are also improved – reduced from 100 to 10 milliseconds.

NIO3

A grand design
EL8’s elegant exterior blends signature NIO design features such as the Double Dash front lights, X-Bar front and illumiBlade tail lights with progressive innovations. EL8’s signature straight, full-length shoulder line delivers a confident profile. Flush windows, fender integrated cameras, ‘invisible’ roof rails, invisible turn signals, along with hidden front and rear wipers, ensure EL8’s sleek and efficient form remains pure.

Intelligence shines through
EL8’s headlights are both smart and safe. New, intelligent multi-beam, adaptive matrix LED headlights – powered by NIO’s onboard supercomputer ADAM – work in conjunction with LiDAR for instant response to light the way ahead. Independently controlled micron LEDs can bend light around corners and react to oncoming traffic, avoiding the increasingly frustrating and dangerous dazzling of other road users.

A focus on families
Supporting families, the EL8 features Child Presence Detection. As well as warning if a child or pet has been left in the car, it encompasses anti-collision protection when the rear door is opened, alongside smart window and door locking. For larger families, EL8 boasts a reassuring four ISOFIX mountings. A specific pet mode maintains the cabin temperature at 22°C and disables certain functions to allow animals to rest safely inside. A 2,000 kg towing capacity and camping mode make EL8 a compelling car for the weekend family getaway.

NIO4

Sustainability as standard
NIO’s designers placed a great emphasis on efficiency, resulting in an impressive 0.25 Cd drag co-efficient. Other efficiency gains were achieved via the Integrated Parking Brake. Utilising the motor for enhanced energy recovery, it increases overall range and reduces brake pad wear. Sustainability was another key factor in EL8’s design. Inside, EL8 features sustainable rattan, soybean foam seat cushions and OEKO-TEX certified Haptex Interior material for the seats and door trim. Using sugar cane and castor oil, EL8’s roof headlining is made from the world’s first plant-based woven suede.

Active suspension for a calming drive
Befitting its luxury positioning, EL8 is the pinnacle of refinement and comfort. At NIO that starts with a chassis featuring dual chamber air suspension and Continuous Damping Control (CDC) that constantly adjusts the damping forces of the shock absorbers in real-time. By monitoring road conditions, vehicle speed and driver inputs, CDC automatically provides optimal ride comfort with reduced vibrations. The dual chamber suspension reduces pitch by 25 per cent during acceleration and by 40 per cent during braking. Delivering progressive damping, NIO’s Hydraulic Rebound Stop (HRS) delivers a new level of cosseting and soothing ride. HRS offers the added benefit of protecting suspension components by absorbing and dissipating energy caused by potholes and poor road surfaces.

NIO5

Technology for serenity
With laminated glass and more than 50 other acoustic treatments, including noise reducing tyres and the ‘Intelligent Smooth Stop’ (ISS) feature that minimises inertia to mitigate against the ‘nodding’ effect during braking, EL8 is a truly serene way to travel. The cabin progresses NIO’s second living room concept through the use of warm, clean and more sustainable materials in harmony with technology to enhance the user experience. The 22-way passenger lounge seats, upgradable via firmware over-the-air updates (FOTA), offer a ‘zero gravity’ feature, zoned heating and ventilation, yet are 25 per cent lighter thanks to a new seat skeleton. The Executive model adds a hot stone massage feature in the first two rows to soothe and invigorate. A powered leg support for passengers and six inches of shoulder adjustment for the driver ensure everyone is comfortable, no matter how far you travel. EL8 offers one metre from seat cushion to roof and over 1.5 metres width to deliver amongst best-in-class interior space. Luggage volume is ample for the most active family, too. With the touch of a button, the third row seats can be lowered electronically to make a substantial 810 litres of luggage space available. That’s room for two golf bags or four 28-inch suitcases.

The cabin environment is further enhanced by NIO’s in-car fragrance system. The EL8 debuts ‘Forest’, a new sensory experience that brings the enduring freshness of the woodland inside. Senses are further stirred by the 174 LED ambient waterfall lighting and 23-speaker, 7.1.4 enhanced and immersive 2,300 W surround sound system. It features Dirac Pro and Dolby Atmos technologies to achieve richer, balanced and more dynamic sounds.

NIO6

Intuitive power
Like all NIOs, EL8 offers a connected and intuitive driving experience that puts the user in control. A true digital powerhouse, NIO’s intelligent Banyan system enables all the smart functionality and is constantly refreshing the rich content features by over-the-air (OTA) updates. If ‘ADAM’ – the most powerful, mass-produced mobile computing platform to date with 1,016 TOPS – is the brain of every NIO, Aquila is the eye, responsible for obtaining a wealth of useful and reassuring driving information. Using NIO’s full-stack technology algorithms, Aquila processes data from 33 cameras and sensors to offer a complete picture of the dynamic environment around the vehicle. EL8 also benefits from the industry’s furthest-detecting mass-product LiDAR. The 1,550 nm LiDAR can reach a maximum detection distance of 500 metres, equivalent to the length of five football pitches. EL8’s 8 MP high-resolution cameras see further with finer detail, detecting vehicles 680 metres away, pedestrians 220 metres away and traffic furniture such as cones 160 metres away.

EL8’s Emergency Video function is automatically triggered by events such as airbag deployment and captures crucial footage in the event of an accident. One-Click Video Recording allows for manual triggering of recordings of traffic violations with Accident Victimisation Assistant able to record key evidence. All EL8s come with a 16.3” enhanced HUD, another first for NIO, alongside a 12.8” AMOLED central display and 6.6” display in the rear. EL8 features NIO’s renowned NOMI Halo in-car virtual assistant with an updated and refined NOMI Mate, available as an option on both models.

EL8 is available in five sky-themed exterior colours and three earth-inspired interiors. Options include 21” or forged 22” wheels, towbar and for the Centre Aisle model, the Premium Comfort Package (first and second row hot stone massage function, second row ventilated and third row heated seats).

NIO7

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ZF Foxconn Chassis Modules celebrates 20th anniversary of its Solihull plant

Solihull/Osnabrück 13.06.2024 -  On June 13th, the ZF Foxconn Chassis Modules plant for chassis system assembly in Solihull celebrates its 20th anniversary. Located in the heart of UK automotive industry, the Solihull facility has been a vital part of the Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) supply chain since its foundation. To this day, the plant’s overall output marks more than 10 million chassis modules manufactured for the British premium automotive brand, equipping the top tier models such as Land Rover Discovery, Range Rover and Range Rover Sport.

“I am extremely proud of our team’s passion and performance”, says Adrian Chell, Solihull Plant Director. “Over the past 20 years, we have executed a continuous development process here at the site, which endows our chassis module assembly with the highest levels of quality and adaptability to all customer requirements. Therefore, I would also like to thank our partner JLR for the close and trusting cooperation, without which we would not have been able to set these new industry standards over two decades.”

Eike Dorff, CEO from ZF Foxconn Chassis Modules adds:

“The Solihull Plant’s 20-year success story marks a special milestone for our global company. I appreciate our colleague’s work here very much because we have been able to successfully transfer their immense expertise from the Midlands to many more of our international plants. You prove, that consistent performance and customer proximity are the key to our successful future, at least for the next 20 years!”

Distinguished partnership

The long-standing partnership began with a successful nomination by JLR in 2001 for the production of Land Rover Discovery (L319) and Range Rover (L320) chassis modules. Being erected only six miles away from the customer’s assembly plant, ZF Foxconn Chassis Modules, is the sole supplier of front and rear corner modules for JLR company since 2004. Stemming from the former ZF Group’s axle modules product line, ZF Foxconn Chassis Modules is now operating the Solihull plant as a stand-alone company aside 24 other locations globally.

20 years of best practice manufacturing

For two decades, the Solihull teams have been flawlessly delivering high-quality components out of the 4,000-square-metre factory. Complying with the global ZF standards for assembly line configuration, the plant houses a mixture of manual and automated assembly stations. The tailor-made production process is designed for maximum flexibility to cope with any changes in customer demands. Consistent quality control checks at each successive stage employ a total of 61 Cameras and 71 individual inspections to guarantee a near faultless level of product quality and delivery. The highly sophisticated just-in-sequence (JIS) standard ensures a hand-over within a time frame of only six hours after specific order from the OEM customer. Quality and reliability characterize not only the production of the modules but the plant’s logistics network. Fully optimized logistics processes ensure on time collection of the raw materials from the supplier network stretching from the UK to Southern Europe.

Facts about ZF Foxconn Chassis Modules Solihull Plant

Model Types modules

  • Land Rover Discovery L319
  • Range Rover Sport L320
  • Range Rover L405
  • Range Rover Sport L494
  • Land Rover Discovery L462
  • Range Rover L460
  • Range Rover Sport L461
  • Jaguar X250 AWD XF
  • Jaguar X351 AWD XJ

Achieved Awards

2005  Ford Q1 Status Award

2007  ZF Total Quality Management Award

2009  Manufacturing Excellence Award, category e-business

2011  Jaguar Land Rover JLRQ Award

2014  Manufacturing Excellence Award, Midlands Regional & National Awards Winner

2015  Jaguar Land Rover Global Supplier Excellence Silver Award

2015  EEF Developing People Award

2018  “The Manufacturer” Supply Chain Excellence Award Winner

2018  “The Manufacturer” Achieving Customer Values Award Finalist

2018  “The Manufacturer” Smart Factory Award Finalist

2019  Jaguar Land Rover Global Supplier Excellence Awards

Solihull Plant Milestones

2003 Take-over of keys, shop floor preparations and assembly line installation

2004 Start of Production Land Rover L319

2005 Start of Production Range Rover Sport L320

2007 One million axle modules produced

2012 Start of Production Range Rover 405, start of Production Jaguar X250 AWD XF, start of Production Jaguar X351 AWD XJ

2013 Start of Production Range Rover Sport L494

2016 Start of Production Land Rover L462 (D7u Discovery)

2017 Start of Production LEVC (Taxi) Front corner modules​

2021 Start of Production Range Rover L460

2022 Start of Production Range Rover Sport L461

2023 Start of Production ‘SV’ Range Rover and Range Rover Sport

Falken finishes shortest N24 in history with top six result

Falken Motorsports finished the 52nd edition of the ADAC RAVENOL 24h Nürburgring in sixth and eleventh overall – following what will go down in history as the shortest edition of the endurance classic to date.

Thick fog brought out the red flag on Saturday night at 23:23 local time, with over 16 and a half hours of the race remaining. Although cars rejoined the track at 13:30 on Sunday afternoon – for five exploratory laps behind the safety car – conditions did not improve and Race Control opted to display the chequered flag, ending the race before the 24 hours was up for the first time in history.

Things were looking positive for the pair of Falken Porsche 911 GT3 R (992) coming into the ADAC RAVENOL 24h Nürburgring, with the team among the favourites following a trio of wins in the preceding Nürburgring Endurance Series (NLS) and ADAC 24h Nürburgring Qualifying races.

52. ADAC RAVENOL 24h Nürburgring 2024 - Foto: Gruppe C Photography

With 240,000 fans packed around the Nordschleife, top qualifying saw the #33 of Klaus Bachler, Julian Andlauer, Sven Müller and Alessio Picariello secure tenth on the grid, while Nico Menzel, Joel Eriksson, Tim Heinemann and Martin Ragginger qualified 14th in the #44.

The weather was the dominant storyline throughout the weekend, with rain falling at various points around the track just minutes before the formation lap. This made tyre choice for the start of the race a lottery – with some cars diving into the pits rather than heading to the grid.

24h Nuerburgring

The Falken engineers made the correct decision and by nightfall, the #33 and #44 were running in eighth and ninth place. But, as the race progressed and fog increasingly impeded the drivers’ visibility, the red flag put pay to any further challenges from both cars and eventually the result was declared, with the #33 finishing sixth, while the #44 came home in eleventh place.

The next ADAC RAVENOL 24h Nürburgring event will take place from June 19 to 22, 2025.

Download high resolution images here.

Gravity at the centre of Hot Wheels Legends Tour UK 2024 as search for next die-cast car begins

  • Hot Wheels™ Legends Tour returns to the UK searching for a car to transform into a 1:64 die-cast and be inducted into the Hot Wheels Garage of Legends™
  • A new live event will be hosted by SlammedUK’s Gravity Show at the NEC , with judging of the three finalists taking place on August 25
  • Judges this year will include Hot Wheels designer Craig Callum
  • Entries are now open for new, classic, road or track vehicles at www.hotwheelsuklegendstour.co.uk
  • Download high resolution images here

LONDON (28th May, 2024) – UK car owners can once again compete for the chance to have their car reimagined in 1:64 scale as the Hot Wheels Legends Tour returns for 2024. In addition to seeing their modified vehicle immortalised and enjoyed by fans around the world, the winner’s ride will be inducted into the Hot Wheels Garage of Legends.

New for 2024 is a partnership with the Gravity Show on August 24 and 25. Held at the NEC, Birmingham, the UK’s largest modified and supercar show will host the three finalists, with the difficult task of judging falling to a team led by Hot Wheels’ designer Craig Callum. The UK winner will then compete against aspiring car builders from around the world at the Global Semi-Final on November 2 and the Global Grand Finale on November 11 to determine the car that will transform into a die-cast sold around the world.

Gravity Show 2023

Gravity Show 2023

Now in its seventh year, the Hot Wheels Legends Tour continues to thrive at the heart of the global car community. New countries including UAE and Columbia join the Tour in 2024 that last year saw Chimera, a modified Mazda MX-5 from New Zealand, be crowned and recreated as a toy car to be enjoyed by fans of all ages.

2023 Hot Wheels Legends Tour Global Winner - Chris Watson's Mazda MX-5 'The Chimera'

2023 Hot Wheels Legends Tour Global Winner – Chris Watson’s Mazda MX-5 ‘The Chimera’

For the third consecutive year, the UK winner – in 2023 represented by Michael Wallhead’s MG-Beast – beat a record number of entries to reach the Global Finale. Coupled with Lee Johnstone’s 1969 Volvo P1800 gasser winning the competition overall in 2021 – the first time a non US car had succeeded – it underlines the UK’s place and standing in worldwide car culture.

Remaining true to its judging criteria, Hot Wheels will seek authenticity, creativity and ‘garage spirit’ from the UK entrants. Legends Tour judges are looking for extreme, on-trend, relevant vehicles while also considering the builder’s overall creativity and how the project stands out from the crowd. Evidence of early mornings, late nights and determination will also earn extra points. Following last year’s success, an online fan vote via the show’s website, will fast track one entrant to the UK final at SlammedUK’s Gravity event.

2023 Hot Wheels Legends Tour UK Final

2023 Hot Wheels Legends Tour UK Final

“The dedication and enthusiasm we see at Hot Wheels Legends Tour events around the world keep us motivated to build on the tour every year to find more ways to celebrate custom car builders and their drive to become legendary,” says Ted Wu, Senior Vice President and Global Head of Design for Vehicles at Mattel. “The UK always blows us away with unique cars that are worthy of being recreated as Hot Wheels. From sleeper classics from the 60s and 70s, wild one-off customs, iconic race cars to the latest dramatic modified supercars, the sheer diversity and quality make the UK final a tough judgement but always offer true legends.”

To achieve ‘Legendary’ status and see their unique car lined up on the shelves of toy stores around the world, entrants just need to upload a short video and brief description, highlighting its creativity, authenticity and ‘garage spirit’ at www.hotwheelsuklegendstour.co.uk before July 5. Vehicles can be either new or a classic, road or track, with the ultimate winner entering the hallowed Hot Wheels Garage of Legends and securing a lasting legacy in the global car community.

Partners for the 2024 Hot Wheels Legends Tour UK include Smyths Toys, Falken Tyres and Yuasa.

To learn more about the Hot Wheels Legends Tour in the UK visit www.hotwheelsuklegendstour.co.uk and follow #HotWheelsLegendsTour.

Download high resolution images here.

2023 Hot Wheels Legends Tour UK Final – ‘Boneshaker’ die-cast and full-size

2023 Hot Wheels Legends Tour UK Final – ‘Boneshaker’ die-cast and full-size

Hot Wheels Facts

  • Hot Wheels is the leading die-cast brand in the UK, available at Smyths Toys, The Entertainer, Asda, Morrisons, Sainsburys, Tesco and independent toy shops.
  • Founded in 1968, Hot Wheels is the number one selling toy worldwide with over 16 cars sold every second.
  • Hot Wheels continues to be a key influence on car culture, inspiring full-scale designers, car builders and tuners.
  • Hot Wheels is all about the challenger spirit – its founder Elliot Handler embodied that spirit when he founded Hot Wheels.
  • Hot Wheels’ original design team included a car designer and a rocket scientist. They had a brief to create a toy car that was cooler and performed better than the competition.
  • The inaugural set was called ‘Sweet 16’ and today is highly coveted. It featured a mix of custom cars and ‘rods.
  • To date, over eight billion have been sold.
  • The most valuable Hot Wheels car is said to be the ‘Beach Bomb’ VW bus in pink. Never released to the public, its value has been estimated at $150,000.
  • In 2022, Hot Wheels announced it is working on a new live-action movie.