Bernhard tests Falken Porsche ahead of VLN2

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Porsche driver supports tyre manufacturer’s N24 preparation 

Ongoing preparations for Falken’s Nürburgring 24 Hours will see the tyre manufacturer draft in five-time winner Timo Bernhard to test the team’s new-for-2019 Porsche 991.2 this Friday.

With all of Falken’s rosta of Porsche drivers racing at clashing events this weekend, including Carrera Cup Asia, Blancpain GT Series, Intercontinental GT Series and European Le Mans Series, Falken originally planned to only race its sister BMW M6 in VLN2. But the chance to get feedback from Bernhard, who set a lap time of the Nordschleife of 5:19.546 in the 919 Evo last year, means the Schnabl-run team will roll out the Porsche for testing on Friday.

“We always planned to race the BMW this weekend but the opportunity came up to get Timo in the car to work through the preparations we need to do before the N24,” says Stefanie Olbertz, Falken’s motorsport co-ordinator. “With revised suspension, different tyre sizes and aero package, the 2019 911 differs considerably from the GT3R we have been running. Getting more experience of running the new car, plus the chance to have Timo’s feedback was a worthwhile addition to our test programme. We’d like to thank Porsche for making him available to us.”

NIO Brings ES6 and NIO Power Solution to Auto Shanghai 2019

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April 3, 2019 – Shanghai – NIO Inc. (“NIO” or the “Company”) (NYSE: NIO), will once again be bringing the NIO House experience to Auto Shanghai, providing NIO users and attendees an even better exhibition experience. On display will be the EP9, one of the fastest electric cars in the world; the NIO EVE vision car; NIO’s high-performance electric flagship SUV, the ES8; and the high-performance, long-range, electric SUV, the ES6. NIO Power, the comprehensive power solution, will also be exhibited, along with NIO’s latest achievements and advances in R&D. Furthermore, a preview model will also be presented. The NIO House will be located at Exhibition Hall 5.1.

Take all your listening preferences into any car with HARMAN Personi-Fi

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European debut at Geneva for technology that brings how, what and where you like to listen to music into the car 

GIMS 2019 – GENEVA – March 5, 2019A new technology that enables you to bring your individual listening preferences into the car by audio specialists HARMAN, is making its European debut at Geneva Motor Show. Personi-Fi users simply input how, what and where they like to listen to music into the app. Then the technology creates immersive sound environments that are personalised to the listener and the car they are travelling in. By personalising the audio, Personi-Fi can deliver the best experience for each individual, including those that have suffered some hearing loss. The technology also looks to the future, ensuring that ride share users won’t have to compromise their listening preferences with other users.

Against a backgdrop of growing demand for personalization, HARMAN developed Personi-Fi to be a cloud-based brand entertainment solution with a simple user interface to optimise the listening experience on any device with an automotive-specific version shown at Geneva in a VW Golf demonstrator built by HARMAN. Users input data about themselves, their preferences (more bass for example, or an EQ such as jazz or classical) and Person-Fi creates a profile that can be transferred from car to car or other devices.

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With all the processing done in the cloud, users select either Bluetooth, Wi-Fi or LTE streaming to connect their profile to the car. Personi-Fi then uses 200 DSP and technologies such as Virtual Venues, Individual Sound Zones (ISZ), Clari-Fi, Hearing Profile and DIRAC Panorama, even factoring in car seat location to personalise the sound.

In addition to improved acoustic performance over app-only versions of Personi-Fi, the automotive version unlocks a multitude of advanced Personi-Fi features enabled through access to the car’s microphones and navigation systems. By integrating sources from Personi-Fi, the user’s audio preferences are extended to sources including AM/FM, Satellite Radio, CD, USB and streaming sources. Thanks to ‘Over the Air’ updates, custom audio features and upgrades are possible during the life of the vehicle.

“HARMAN Personi-Fi is an ingenious combination of smart phone app and cloud service that brings a personalised experience to any device in any environment, whether the listener is in the car, at home, or on the go,” said Michael Mauser, President, Lifestyle Audio at HARMAN. “Looking ahead to the future, this is a great way for people to enjoy their personal preferences in ride-sharing scenarios, whatever the vehicle.”

Classic Mini goes electric to create alternative and fun city car

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Sixty years after the original first hit the streets, the iconic Mini is given an electric update, blending classic style with the latest 21st century technology

  • Classic Mini gets electric conversion to create a fun and engaging city EV
  • 125-mile (200km) range, 0-60mph in 9.2 seconds
  • Prices start at £79,000
  • Revealed at London Classic Car Show, ExCel 

SWINDON UK, 14 FEBRUARY 2019: Thanks to a British technology company, Swindon Powertrain, the classic Mini is now available as a fun electric city car. Indistinguishable on the outside from the car that made the 1960s swing (apart from the missing exhaust pipe), the Swind E Classic Mini takes the iconic original and gives it a state-of-the-art electric motor and battery, delivering eco-conscious performance and a return to enjoyable city driving.

Available to order immediately, the Swind E Classic Mini promises nippy performance and sensational handling, all packaged in the most stylish way to avoid congestion charge fees. Developed and built in Great Britain using fully restored and original Minis, each taking six months to create, up to 100 will be produced by Swindon Powertrain, an automotive technology firm that has worked on everything from F1 to electric mountain bikes. Prices start at £79,000.

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With compact dimensions, good all-round visibility and responsive handling, the Mini always made sense as a city car. Now it is cleaner too; the Swind E Classic Mini uses cutting-edge lithium-ion batteries to deliver a zero emissions top speed of 80mph and a range of 125 miles. Acceleration is brisk with 0- 60mph in just 9.2 seconds and regenerative braking ensures the car can hold its own in city traffic. A full charge takes just four hours whilst a fast charge is also possible using the widely available female Type-2 connector.

Swind’s E Classic Mini is available in both left and right-hand-drive, with six primary body colours with contrasting roofs available to choose from. The interior gets a makeover with a raft of modern features to ensure it can be used all year round. Highlights include USB charging ports, heated leather seats and windscreen, and cosy underfloor heating. Custom-build options include infotainment and sat-nav systems, power steering, a full-length sliding fabric roof, air conditioning and bespoke colours and wheels.

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This highly-advanced Swind E Classic Mini is the brainchild of Swindon Powertrain’s managing director Raphael Caillé, who saw an opportunity to produce an electric car with a soul that people from all walks of life would instantly fall instantly in love with. “This is the first time an electrified Mini has entered production,” confirms Caillé. “There have been one-offs and prototypes before, but Swind is the first company to launch such a car to the public. The classic Mini has such a special place in people’s hearts, not only in the UK but around the world. The packaging of Sir Alec Issigonis’ 1959 design was truly ground-breaking and now we are making it relevant again. Its compact size and good visibility together with contemporary performance and handling, makes it a car you’ll want to drive in the city and puts a smile on your face.

For more information visit www.swind.life

HARMAN Showcases Today’s Ultimate In-Vehicle Experiences at CES 2019

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Connected car, audio and connected services technologies collectively provide automakers bundled solutions for immersive in-vehicle experiences

CES 2019 – LAS VEGAS – January 7, 2019 – HARMAN International, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., focused on connected technologies for automotive, consumer and enterprise markets, is showcasing at CES 2019 the vehicle’s role in amplifying the connected life. By bringing together the company’s expertise in connected car, audio and connected services technologies, HARMAN is democratising vehicle experiences through innovative technology solutions that enable smarter interactions, improve safety and security, and help automakers seamlessly scale offerings for all vehicle segments.

“It wasn’t too long ago that a vehicle’s value was measured by its mechanical performance and driving dynamics. With the emerging popularity of shared mobility and in-vehicle technology however, value is now being measured by experience-per-mile,” said Dinesh Paliwal, HARMAN President and CEO. “With our CES 2019 technologies, HARMAN is helping automakers provide more connected experiences in a variety of segments that can be used today instead of years down the road.”

Each newly enhanced offering is designed to work together, often managed by a single HARMAN control unit, to help automakers pick and choose technologies to provide greater connectivity within vehicles, and across devices, allowing OEMs the ability to streamline their supply chain, while improving product flexibility. This also helps expedite the implementation of more advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) across model lineups.

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Scalable Connected Car
Some of the most important in-vehicle technologies today are the instrument cluster and infotainment display, but far too often these are designed to function in a silo. For the consumer, this can make the driving experience seem disjointed and lead to a feeling of information overload. All of which, fosters a sense of discomfort and mistrust around connected car technology.

To foster consumer trust, and help drivers embrace the highly connected and autonomous vehicle experience, HARMAN has reimagined its Digital Cockpit offerings while ensuring they are scalable for a range of entry-level and premium luxury vehicles. In an economical application, HARMAN’s Digital Cockpit simplifies vehicle display layouts to present both critical and ancillary information in an intuitive and cohesive layout. Capable of showing ADAS feature information, turn-by-turn navigation, multi-media player information, feature menus and more, the entry-level Digital Cockpit can also seamlessly integrate with a user’s smartphone to bridge multiple personal assistants (such as Google, Alexa and Samsung’s Bixby) while adding HARMAN-specific driver related skills into all the clouds in an agnostic way.

For drivers seeking the ultimate in-vehicle experience for them and their passengers right from the factory, HARMAN’s Premium Digital Cockpit and Compute Platform with integrated modular hardware is an end-to-end package that seamlessly integrates a vehicle’s cluster, infotainment and safety features. Blending clear, vibrant QLED and OLED display technologies for optimal colour gamut regardless of the time of day, the solution also features facial recognition for driver monitoring using HARMAN’s Cabin Monitoring System – a suite of sensors to capture first- and second-order biometric signals from a driver to create a deeper human-machine relationship. Augmented reality for E-Mirror surround view and contextual navigation, as well as cloud-stored profile settings for personalised experiences are also featured in this fully integrated IoT capable offering.

Both variants of HARMAN’s Digital Cockpit can work seamlessly with the company’s suite of sensor technology – from Forward Facing Cameras to LiDAR – designed to not only bring more ADAS-equipped vehicles to market, but help drivers feel more comfortable with future-mobility technology.

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Personalised, Smart Audio for an Elevated Communications Experience

With voice commands emerging as the norm for managing in-car experiences, clear in-vehicle communication is more important than ever before. HARMAN’s new Premium Communication solutions leverage the latest advancements in smart audio and acoustic signal processing to personalise the sonic environment and provide clear, frustration-free communication for all vehicle occupants – whether it’s with a voice assistant, someone on the other end of a phone call, or with each other.

Built on AudioworX, HARMAN’s proprietary, open-network development platform, Premium Communications is modular and scalable across vehicle segments. Together, its technologies address the challenges of the evolving vehicle interior and help OEMs better capitalise on integrations with voice assistants, while fulfilling consumer demand for better in-vehicle communication.

 Premium Communications comprises:

  • In-Car Communication (ICC), providing clear, safe 2-way communication amongst vehicle occupants –seamlessly, for every drive.
  • ClearChat with Far-End Noise Cancellation, bringing new levels of clarity for phone voice calls and voice commands.
  • Personal Communication Zones, giving each occupant an enjoyable, personalised in-car experience free from sonic clutter.
  • Multi Voice Personal Assistant Capability allowing occupants the freedom to use the voice assistant of their choice.

Leveraging the world’s leading microphone, voice processing and noise cancelling technologies, Premium Communications is a new way to go to market, changing the standard for the in-vehicle experience across all market and vehicle segments.

A Securely Connected Future
Ensuring all this connectivity functions securely is a primary consideration. HARMAN’s Ignite Automotive Cloud platform works with both entry-level and premium offerings to manage multiple in-vehicle solutions, from vehicle diagnostics to cloud-based driver profiles, all under one control unit that can be updated over-the-air by using HARMAN Remote Vehicle Updating Service (OTA). This also enables connected ADAS applications and features, as well as IoT functionality to provide capabilities such as route alerts and guidance via calendar integration and integration with home control systems such as SmartThings. HARMAN SHIELD – a comprehensive intrusion detection and prevention solution (IDPS) – functions as the car’s security system, capable of detecting, managing, mitigating and responding to cyber-attacks on connected and autonomous vehicles.

Keeping all of this technology updated and connected requires a robust data transfer network, which is why HARMAN is working to equip more vehicles with its 5G Telematics for vehicle to everything (V2X) communications. Powered by HARMAN’s powerful conformal antenna technology and capable of working in cars and motorcycles (via a Bluetooth helmet), V2X allows for faster message exchanges for increased roadway safety, and audible infrastructure and safety alerts.

Qualifying Race podium tops mixed Macau weekend for Ilott

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Ilott secures third and seventh places in an unpredictable weekend of drama

Despite a strong qualifying performance with P2 in both sessions, Callum Ilott’s return to F3 at the 65th Macau Grand Prix was only rewarded with a third and seventh place. Against this year’s crop of both European and Japanese series F3 drivers, Ilott, driving for his former team Carlin, was competitive from the outset on a track he really enjoys. “I’ve enjoyed coming back to F3 and racing these cars at Macau again,” says Ilott. “After strong quali and the podium on Saturday, Macau showed again how unpredictable it can be on Sunday when we just didn’t have the straight line speed to compete at the re-starts.”

Despite a scare at the end of qualifying that saw Ilott make a skilful avoidance of Marino Sato’s crashed car, Ilott lined up on the front row alongside eventual winner Dan Ticktum. “I was halfway through braking for the Police corner when the yellow flag was shown,” says Ilott. “I saw a gap but it was tight, especially as the rear of the car is wider.  Somehow, and I’m still not quite sure how, I squeezed through.”

 

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The Qualification Race that determines the grid for Sunday’s Grand Prix took place early on Saturday morning. In Ilott’s first F3 race start since the 2017 event, the Ferrari junior tucked in behind Ticktum before making a move, around the outside of the fast Mandarin curve to move into the lead. Oversteer on the exit of the tight Lisboa meant Ilott ran very close to the barrier but was still ahead. “I had a good start and got into the lead but Dan was faster in a straight line and towed past a lap later and I was back to P2.” There was further drama on lap three when a stray dog forced a safety car period. “Macau is unpredictable!,” adds Ilott. “I saw it but I was clear but it was closer for Dan.”

The race resumed with now six racing laps to go. Ilott put up a robust defence to hold off both Joel Eriksson and Sascha Fenestraz but the Swede found a way past with five laps to go. Ilott then withstood further pressure from Fenestraz, setting a personal best lap in the process, before the flag fell and Ilott secured another podium, his third at one of the most difficult tracks to master. “It was good to be back on the podium. We lacked a bit of speed but with changes planned to the car, I felt all was to play for on Sunday,” claims Ilott.

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Sunday’s Macau Grand Prix saw Ilott make a less successful getaway. On the long run to Lisboa, Ilott was able to move into fourth but was hemmed in on the outside at the righthander and slipped back to fifth. Ilott then ran side by side with Mick Schumacher in the mountain section before getting ahead of the European champion. “I bogged down at the start and was trying to find some space, ending up on the outside. It was very close with Mick but it was clean from both sides,” adds Ilott.

The race was then stopped after a serious accident involving Sophia Floersch, that led to a lengthy delay to repair the barriers and catch fencing. “Everyone was concerned about Sophia and those behind the barrier,” says Ilott. “My thoughts are with her, the marshals, photographers and everyone else involved,” The race was restarted with nine laps to go and Ilott fell down to seventh on the run down to Lisboa.

Undaunted, Ilott fought his way back up to sixth before a further safety car bunched up the field. This time into Lisboa, Ilott was hit hard from behind and only just avoided ending up in the wall. “It was a big knock but the main issue today was a lack of speed to be able to tow back to the cars in front,” adds Ilott who slipped to seventh by the flag. “This year it didn’t go my way but that is the special appeal of Macau and why it has drawn me back year after year. I enjoyed working with the guys at Carlin again too. The main thing now is how Sophia is and I’m thinking of her, her family and all those involved.”

Ilott now heads directly to Abu Dhabi to conclude his GP3 season where he currently lies third in the standings, his highest championship position in cars.

 

 

HARMAN Opens New Facility Focused on Automotive Software Development in Poland

Signs Agreements with Top Polish Universities to Nurture and Hire Engineering Talent

STAMFORD, CT – November 8, 2018 – HARMAN International, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., focused on connected technologies for automotive, consumer and enterprise markets, today announced that the company has opened a new office facility in Łódź, Poland to accommodate its growing talent in the country.

HARMAN new office, located at ul. Ogrodowa 8, offers an open, collaborative, and superior work environment for the company’s current and future staff. The facility has several progressive design elements that will enhance employee collaboration across teams. The new office will be home to over 350 engineers developing advanced automotive solutions including the company’s summit car audio platform, HARMAN’s award-winning Ignite platform, HARMAN OTA software management and maps services.
The company has also signed separate agreements with two of the top Universities of Poland – University of Lodz/ Faculty of Physics and Applied Informatics and Lodz University of Technology/Faculty of Electrical, Electronic, Computer and Control Engineering, to collaborate towards developing the finest IT talent in the country.

As part of the agreement, HARMAN will work with both these universities to undertake joint research projects, develop academic research papers, and advance academic education in the domain of software engineering for embedded systems. HARMAN will also actively hire both interns and permanent employees from these universities and enhance the overall engineering talent pool in the country.

“As we seek to further our culture of innovation within HARMAN and key growth sectors, we are proud to be expanding our operations in an engineering hotbed like Poland,” said Sanjay Dhawan, President – Connected Services and CTO, HARMAN. “HARMAN has been growing quickly in Poland, tripling its number of employees within the past two years, and we expect this new environment, along with the support of top academia, to support further strategic initiatives in the future.”

Recruitment for new projects is ongoing, and the company is seeking Eastern European engineering talent to join its team, in Łódź, and assist in bringing further innovation to the connected car market.

HARMAN is a leader in the automotive infotainment industry, filing more than 7,000 patents and receiving approximately 60 design awards related to audio systems.

‘Bit of a Do’ rounds off Daisy Sadler’s fundraising tour

Daisy Sadler’s epic efforts to raise money for the Brain Tumour Charity will conclude with a picnic party and dance at Broughton Sports and Social Club on the 17th November.  After her 1,000 mile trip from Tadmarton to Edinburgh and back in her waggon, Daisy and friends are hosting an event to round off the fundraising that has topped £23,400 with the aim to reach £25,000.

Individual tickets at £10 per head as well as tables for either six, eight or ten are still available for the relaxed evening that will feature the Blue Ice Disco and a cash bar. Guests just need to bring their own food or order a takeaway to be delivered there and if they wish, can decorate their tables in their own style. “We’re hoping for up to 100 people and have already sold over 60 tickets,” says Daisy Sadler. “It’s all to support the Imogen Whitby fund to do more research into brain tumours.” All bookings and further details are available from Gill Judd who can be contacted on [email protected]. Donations can still be made at https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/sydsplodsgoesnorth

Falken backs Jake Archer’s return to Gymkhana GRiD

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‘The Wrecking Ball’ will use Falken’s FK510 tyres for 2018 event in Johannesburg, South Africa

Falken will supply tyres to Jake ‘The Wrecking Ball’ Archer for his return to the Gymkhana GRiD in South Africa on 1 December 2018. Archer, who has finished on the podium at the Gymkhana GRiD world finals four times, will compete in a 260hp Subaru Impreza against an impressive list of drivers. This includes FIA World Rallycross and FIA World Rally Champion Petter Solberg, current World Rallycross Champion Johan Kristoffersson, and rally ace and internet star Ken Block.

Following its debut at the X Games in Los Angeles in 2013, Gymkhana GRiD has attracted a growing number of star drivers from drifting, rallycross and rallying. Competitors in AWD and RWD classes go head-to-head around a tight course that features obstacles, cones and barrels. With the aim of making the least number of mistakes as possible, drivers perform a sequence of manoeuvres, spins and figure of eights with the slowest competitor eliminated each time.

Archer has selected Falken’s flagship FK510 pattern to provide the grip and control required to get around the obstacles as well as the ability to accelerate and stop in the shortest distances.

“It’s mega to work with Falken at this year’s event,” says Jake Archer, who is based in Tamworth, Staffordshire. “The competition has improved massively with some of the best names in rallycross and drifting taking part. I’m looking forward to showing these guys what Falken and I can achieve.”

The finals take place on 1 December with all the action available on Gymkhana GRiD’s social channels.

Callum Ilott returns to Macau with Carlin for F3 World Cup assault

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‘Unfinished business’ sees Ferrari Academy Driver heading to Macau GP

GP3 front-runner Callum Ilott will be reunited with Carlin for a return to F3 at the Macau Grand Prix next month. The 2017 Qualification Race winner, who hasn’t driven in the F3 category since last year’s event, will race with the team that he made his Macau debut with back in 2015.

After challenging for the GP3 title through the year, the attraction of the unpredictable street circuit saw Ilott accept the chance to return for the 65th running of the event. “The real appeal is the challenge of the track – I just love it.  It’s given me some highs and lows over the last three years;  I’ve kissed the trophies and the walls and I am still coming back again,” says Ilott. “It’s unique; it can be rewarding, frustrating and even cruel but when it all comes together, a decent lap around there is like nothing else.”

After a podium in 2016 and winning with an eight second lead on Saturday in 2017, the Ferrari Academy Driver says he feels the need to return to the former Portuguese enclave. “To have led that Saturday race last year and gapped it, and then not have the closure of the win on Sunday last year is most definitely unfinished business for me.  It’s one of those races that’s now a personal target to win. I know Trevor and the Carlin team well from 2015 and they also came close to winning in the crazy race last November. This could be the last year that the current generation of F3 cars compete at Macau so it would be special to get the result together, a team I started in F3 with. I’m sure we can be right in the mix.”

“We are pleased to welcome Callum back to the team who we last worked with in 2015,” says Trevor Carlin. “He competed with us in FIA F3 so has great experience in the car and took pole position at the event last year – it’s definitely somewhere that he’s got good pace and a score to settle.”

The Macau GP will take place from the 14th to the 18th November ahead of Ilott’s final GP3 race in Abu Dhabi one week later. “The F3 Dallara is a car that’s been such a big part of my racing career,” adds Ilott. “It’s an unpredictable event, anything can happen, but winning at Macau would be a nice way to sign off my time with that car.”

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