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  1. With its sights set on the BMW 3 Series and the Mercedes-Benz C-Class, Jaguar could be planning a full range of models for its upcoming entry-level car - possibly called the XS. The XS will replace the X-Type, finally giving Jaguar a product in the highly competitive luxury compact sedan segment. According to sources, the car will also be available with coupe and wagon bodystyles (rendered images below). Jaguar's upcoming 3 Series and C-Class fighter seen testing and wearing a modified XF body is also poised to be clad in an all-aluminum monocoque body structure, similar to the XJ, to save weight. According to Adrian Hallmark, Jaguar's Global Brand Director, an aluminium monocoque is a first for this market and on this sort of scale, by the time they go on sale, the new saloon, coupe and estate will be the most efficient, refined and advanced cars in their class. Plus, the car is expected to be offered initially with Jaguar's small capacity turbocharged four and supercharged six-cylinder petrol and diesel engine. This will also mean that entry-level cars are able to emit less than 100g/km of CO2 without the need for hybrid technology. The baby Jaguar is scheduled to be due in 2015 and it sure is one exciting cat. Purr.
  2. Regan_ong

    Infiniti explains name change of lineup

    Infiniti caused quite a bit of hullabaloo late last year when it announced it would be changing its vehicle names so that all of its cars start with Q and all of its crossovers and SUVs start with QX (not the ones on the number plates seen locally). Now, the luxury division of Nissan has posted a video that explains the historically relevant reason for the new Q badge. Well, Infiniti is returning to the Q name to pay homage to its very first model, the Q45, and it's starting with the all new Q50 sedan. Now, however, while most of Infiniti's 2014 models will get the new Q badge, the G37 Sedan will keep its nameplate through model year 2015 (despite the fact that Infiniti already changed the G37 Coupe and G37 Convertible models to the name Q60). Are you getting confused? Watch the video below to understand better.
  3. With a long standing tradition of building compact, open top sports cars that started with the S600 and ending with the S2000, Honda seems intent to get back into the game. After seeing the success Toyota/Subaru has had with the 86/BRZ, Honda is primed to one-up its rivals. According to a source within Honda, a new affordable sports car is being seriously considered, but don't expect something as high-end as the S2000 - think small, quick and light. The car would be small, probably even smaller than the Mazda MX-5, and come equipped with either a 1.3-litre or 1.5-litre in-line four with i-VTEC. Keep your expectations low on its power output, but thanks to its light weight which is rumored to sit around 900kg, the car should have adequate acceleration along with good handling and an overall agile driving experience. There's even talk that the "S1500" may come with a mid-engine layout, in the style of the Honda Beat. As for the car's design direction, Honda would either use the Japan-only N-ONE or make it look more like the current Civic. We reckon the N-ONE's styling would do justice because it pays homage to the iconic S600. Rumours of a new Honda roadster have appeared and disappeared with tide-like regularity since the moment the S2000 died, and none of them have come to pass. The NSX revival was followed by nearly a decade of will-they, won't-they rumours and telephone-game whispers before Honda actually buckled down and built something. It seems like the same thing could be happening here. Either way, let's wait for Honda to come up with this answer to the Toyota 86 and the Mazda MX-5 in 2015 or 2016.
  4. Regan_ong

    What is the best car I've driven so far?

    "What is the best car you've driven so far?" I always get asked this question whenever I am engaged in a conversation with my relatives or friends. Well, as a rookie in the industry, I haven't had the chance to try as many as other seniors have. My age notwithstanding. But what I can say for sure is that I don't have an absolute answer to the question but if you're interested, here is my two cents' worth. Firstly, every single car out there has its pros and cons, and in my dictionary, there is only near perfect. Same goes for us humans. And then it boils down to the personal preference about a car. You may love a Toyota 86 to bits, however, your other half may not like it because of the frequent 'get out to let others in' courtesy. Last but not least, on this hot and sunny island of ours, every single thing is helluva expensive. No, hold a second. Buying a car here is helluva expensive - if it ain't for the price, I may have gotten a wee bit nearer to having answered the question. Cars aside, one vehicle that I actually enjoy driving is a Suzuki Every. It is such an honest vehicle; it is just what it is - a van. Yes, the driveability may be like crap and powering it is only a mere 659cc engine but, seriously, who cares about the performance when all you need is a vehicle that allows you to get from point A to point B in a fuss-free manner? Heading to IKEA? No problem too, this 'kei' car can haul your furniture as easy as 1, 2, 3. Best of all, its compact size allows you to access cramped places easily, which is really common on this tiny red dot we call home. So what's the best car I've driven thus far again?
  5. Regan_ong

    Toyota 86 could get a new engine

    Fans of the 86 listen up. Rumour has it that Toyota is preparing a power boost for its popular 86 sports coupe. The Japanese brand has teased numerous concepts of its two-door cult car with upgraded engines, including a supercharged TRD version (above) built in the U.S.A and a twin-charged version (below) created by its in-house skunkworks Gazoo Racing. But those were designed to showcase the ability for aftermarket tuners and were not really suitable for mainstream production. Now, the Chief Engineer of the 86, Tetsuya Tada, has finally admitted that his team is developing a number of ways to increase performance of the showroom version - one of which will definitely make it to production when the 86 receives its mid-life upgrade in 2015. "I hope to make an engine upgrade at least one time with this car. We have already tried all possibilities and there are several types of 86 prototypes at the Toyota proving ground now; one is a turbocharger, one is bigger displacement and the other is a special hybrid system," said Tada. Tada did not divulge any further details, but inside sources claimed that the most likely option is an increase in displacement, bumping the 2.0-litre horizontally opposed engine up to a 2.5-litre and increasing power from 200bhp to around 260bhp. It is understood that this option would be the most cost-effective solution, which not only maintains the integrity of the lightweight concept but prevents placing additional stress on the drivetrain that a turbo charger would, or the complexity and weight penalty of a hybrid system. However, both alternatives are not being tested in vain, as they are likely to be introduced on the next generation 86. Either way, it is almost certain that the hybrid system Toyota is currently working on will make its way into the next generation 86. However, it is unlikely to be a conventional and heavy battery pack but rather a road-going development of the super capacitor system employed in its Le Mans sportscar racers, which are not only smaller and lighter but can store and deliver energy quicker for rapid bursts of acceleration. Come on Toyota! We certainly hope to see a more powerful 86.
  6. Akram_saheed

    My thoughts on the BMW 3 Series GT

    BMW Asia together with the local distributors of the German marque - Performance Motors Limited (PML) - locally launched the all new 3 Series Gran Turismo (GT) last week. The car is a looker, it has typical BMW dimensions and trademark design characteristics that does not fall from the existing 3 Series family. BMW claims, the 3 Series GT combines the Sedan's dynamic, sporting genes with the practicality and versatility of the Touring body style. Personally, I think the car suffers from severe personality disorder(s). I have nothing against the car or the potential buyers or even the brand. With a guy who possesses mild traits of OCD, I am just confused with is the sole purpose of the 3 Series GT and not to mention I do understand the whole trend of 'hybrid' multitasking products. Let me put it this way, you belong to one of the affluent classes (or getting there), you have a successful job, a small family and a decent pay that allows you to buy the above mentioned car despite the stringent loan restrictions and rules. On a simple night out with friends or extended family members you display your new metallic and leather possession
  7. After all the speculations, here's the first set of official photos of the 2014 Mazda3 sedan. Bearing the same front fascia as the hatchback, the Mazda3 has a short boot with an elongated bonnet, giving the new sedan an imposing stance. From certain angle, the latest Mazda3 bears a resemblance to the second generation Lexus IS, which is not a bad thing. In my opinion, the Mazda3 and Kia K3 are currently the best-looking compact sedans from Asia. The Mazda3 sedan will be offered with the same engine and gearbox line up as the recently-launched hatchback version. This means a range of SKYACTIV-G petrol with capacities of 1.5-litre, 2.0-litre and 2.5-litre and a 2.2-litre SKYACTIV-D diesel. Depending on the model, transmission options include a six-speed automatic and a six-speed manual gearbox. According to a report by The Straits Times, the new Mazda3 will arrive in Singapore in the first half of 2014. In the meantime, we can feast our eyes on the gallery below.
  8. SYF77

    CATS Classified Car-nival 2013

    The annual CATS Classified Car-nival took place at the Singapore Expo on 7th July. The event showcased both new and pre-owned cars, car-related accessories and other services. In addition, there was a Race Queen Pageant, games and what's a carnival without free goodies! While I was at the event, happily snapping away photos, I indulged in a packet of Oregon Fresh potato chips and a can of Orchard Fresh Grape Float that were distributed freely. Below are snippets of the models - both four-wheeled and two-legged - that were on display.
  9. Kia Singapore is staging a special preview event for the new Forte K3 on 6th July at the Turf Club for its Facebook fans. The 2013 Forte K3 is powered by a 1.6-litre D-CVVT engine which churns out 130bhp. Mated to a six-speed automatic transmission, the Korean sedan takes 11.6 seconds to hit 100km/h from standstill. The new K3 has grown in size and measures 4,560mm by 1,780mm by 1,435mm (L x W x H). For the Singapore-bound version, the car is loaded with goodies such as Smart Welcome Lighting System, ventilated driver's seat, powered front seats with memory function for the driver's side and HID projector headlamps with LED daylight running lights. The five-door version is rumoured to be available locally towards the end of the year.
  10. A recent visit to Honda Singapore's Facebook page revealed the impending arrival of the all new Honda Accord. The ninth generation Accord already went on sale in the North American market back in September 2012. Since the past two generations of the Singapore-bound Accord hail from Thailand, the factory source of the latest version is almost a forgone conclusion. The specifications of the Thailand Accord will tell a lot about the model that we will be getting. The new Thailand Accord is available with a 155bhp 2.0-litre i-VTEC engine or a 174bhp 2.4-litre i-VTEC Earth Dreams Technology. The 2.4-litre unit is a brand new engine from Honda that employs VTC (Variable Timing Control) and direct injection technology with extensive friction reduction measures. This is in addition to the usual DOHC and VTEC technologies. Both engines are mated to a five-speed automatic transmission. This may sound a tad disappointing as class competitors such as the Kia Optima and Mazda 6 have already adopted a six-speed setup. Measuring 4,870mm by 1,850mm by 1,465mm (L x W x H), the new Accord is shorter but wider and sits lower than the outgoing model. The front double wishbone suspension has been replaced with a MacPherson strut design while the rear retains a multi-link setup. It is the first Accord to use a strut suspension since the second generation. From a safety aspect, the new Accord is available with Collision Mitigation Brake System (CMBS) that alerts the driver of an imminent front end collision and applies the brake automatically. The Honda Lane Watch Blind Spot Display provides an enhanced view of the passenger-side roadway. The 2.4-litre variant comes equipped with six airbags while the 2.0-litre makes do with four. Vehicle Stability Assist is standard across all models. The complete specifications of the new Thailand Accord can be found below.
  11. The current car loan restrictions will be lifted by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) for a period of 60 days for the purchase of used cars that were part of car dealers' inventory before 25th February 2013. Used cars registered as of 4th March 2013 will also be eligible for this concession as dealers have up to seven days to register used cars under the LTA's Temporary Transfer Scheme (TTS). The inventory of used cars acquired by dealers at relatively high in-built Certificate of Entitlement (COE) values has made it particularly challenging to adjust to the new market conditions. Demand has also fallen more sharply in the used car market compared to that for new cars. Thus MAS has therefore decided to temporarily lift the restrictions for the limited pool - comprising less than 7,000 cars. This concession takes effect from 6th April 2013 and will be in place for a period of 60 days, after which, the financing restrictions will apply. Also, the previously announced loan restrictions has been extended to all entities that finance car purchases - including those not regulated by MAS. MAS also announced it will continue to monitor developments in the car market and COE premiums, and will recalibrate the financing restrictions for new and used cars when appropriate.
  12. For those who have been waiting for the arrival of the all new Kia Forte K3, the good news is that you can pre-book yours for S$89,999 now. The stylish Korean sedan will arrive locally in July 2013 according to Kia Singapore's Facebook page. Based on the same underpinning as the Hyundai Elantra, the 2013 Forte measures 4,560mm by 1,780mm by 1,445mm (L x W x H). The Singapore-bound K3 will also be equipped with the same 130bhp 1.6-litre D-CCVT engine mated to a six-speed automatic gearbox. Century sprint is quoted as 11.6 seconds. Based on a conversation that I had with a Kia sales personal, the new Forte will be equipped with 17-inch alloys and factory-fitted leather seats. The electric driver's seat will have two memory settings. In terms of safety, the compact sedan will be fitted with no less than six airbags. From the sales person's catalogue, the new K3 can be selected in 10 different colours. The OMV of the car is said to be about S$17K and the COE rebate at launch price is S$40K. If that sounds like good value to you, it is time to head down to Cycle & Carriage's Kia showroom.
  13. [extract] The 2013 Mazda6 was previously reported to arrive before Christmas of 2012 but it did not happen. However, the wait is over. I happened to take a bus along Eunos Link and saw a batch of spanking new Mazda6 saloons in Trans Eurokars showroom at Ubi Close. A visit to Mazda Singapore
  14. Deeq

    A day with the G-Wagen

    The Mercedes-Benz G-Wagen is a rather rare choice for Luxury SUV buyers in Singapore, sgCarMart takes the car out for a quick spin to find out why. The G-Wagen is definitely a head turner, even with the subtle black paintwork. We drove the car around Singapore, finding places to shoot for our review, from urban areas, to muddy grounds. It's really stunning to look at, but though we've spotted a few G55 AMGs from time to time, this car is hardly seen on our roads. Here's a sneak peek of some photos we got for our test drive. Look out for the review of the G350 coming up real soon.
  15. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6HjspOSt0Zc Until recently, Singapore buyers looking for a premium mid-sized sedan with a capacity of 2.0-litre or below would probably shortlist the BMW 520i, Mercedes E250 CGI or the Audi A6 2.0-litre TFSI. Now there is one more contender to the fight and its British. The Jaguar XF has just thrown its hat into the current three-corner fight with the introduction of the 2.0-litre petrol turbocharged variant here. The 2.0-litre XF is powered by a 240bhp engine akin to the unit in the Ford Mondeo. However, unlike the Mondeo which uses a six-speed dual-clutch transmission, the XF is equipped with an 8-speed ZF automatic transmission. The entry-level XF sprints from 0 to 100km/h in 7.9 seconds, and boasts a higher horsepower figure than its three German rivals. With reference to sgCarMart, the 2.0-litre Jaguar XF is priced at S$275,000 without COE. The introduction of a new base model for the XF might snatch some buyers away from 'the big German three' 520i, E250 and A6 2.0-litre TFSI.
  16. The last time we had a 1.6-litre BMW 3 Series on sale in Singapore was in the 1990s during the E36 era. The wait is finally over as the above electronic poster which is downloaded from BMW Asia Insider Facebook signals the imminent arrival of the 2013 BMW 316i. Just like the latest 116i, the 316i is powered by a 1.6-litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine that pushes 136bhp and 220Nm of torque through an eight-speed automatic gearbox. According to BMW, the 316i sprints from 0 to 100km/h is 9.2 seconds which is only 0.1 second slower than the 116i. The 156bhp Mercedes C180 CGI BlueEfficiency reaches the century mark at a much quicker 8.5 seconds. However, BMW fans need not be disappointed as a more powerful 318i, which borrows the 170bhp 1.6-litre unit from the 118i, is said to be in the pipeline. The EU combined cycle fuel consumption for the 316i is claimed to range between 5.8 and 5.9L/ 100km.
  17. Tan Chong Motor will be bringing in the Note mini MPV to join Nissan's current lineup in Singapore. In its second generation, the Note was unveiled on 16 July 2012 and is the production version of the Invitation concept that was presented at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show. Measuring 4100mm (L) x 1,695mm (B) x 1,525mm (H), the car is larger than the Nissan March but slightly smaller than the Freed, a parallel-imported mini MPV from Honda. Perhaps, the interesting part about the note lies underneath the bonnet. It is powered by Nissan's new supercharged 1.2-litre DR12DDR engine. The forced-fed lump features technologies such as direct injection and Continuous Variable Valve Timing Control System (CVTCS). Power is transmitted to the front wheel via a CVT transmission. Fuel economy is rated at 25.2km/L based on the JC08 cycle, a Japanese fuel consumption test. If you are looking for a mini MPV or hatchback, do take note of the latest offering from Nissan.
  18. Borneo Motors has announced its intention to bring in the 1.6-litre Toyota Auris hatchback. In its second generation, the Auris was first displayed publicly at the 2012 Paris Motor Show in September. Shortly after, it went on sale in Japan, Australia, New Zealand and Europe. A hatchback body style has been missing from Toyota's lineup in Singapore for a long time. So, the arrival of the Auris will certainly freshen up the Toyota showroom here. Measuring 4,275mm (L) x 1,760mm (W) x 1,460 mm (H), the Auris is slightly shorter in the X,Y and Z directions than one of its main rival, the Hyundai i30. The 1.6-litre Auris features Toyota's Valvematic technology. Valvematic is a further development of the Dual VVT-I system by adding lift and duration control to the inlet valve variable timing. The engine is mated to a MultiDrive transmission, which is Toyota's fancy language for CVT. With 132bhp and 160Nm on hand, the Auris sprints from 0 to 100km/h in 11.1 seconds. This is slightly faster than the i30's 11.5 seconds performance. The arrival of the Auris should not raise any cause for concern for Singapore's favorite hatchback, the VW Golf. Still, the Auris is an important model for Toyota Singapore as it ushers in the new face of the brand with its all-new frontal design.
  19. SYF77

    COE classification by OMV ?

    In recent years, the downsizing of engines by premium brands has led to luxury cars competing for a slice of the Cat A COE, which is of 1600CC capacity and below. For instance, a 1.6-litre Volvo S80 is something unthinkable 10 years ago but it is available today. Before that, Cat A COE used to be dominated by work horses such as the Toyota Corolla and Honda Civic. With the tightening of COE supply, prices are sure to head north. As premium brands would normally command higher profit margin, it is expected of them to out-bid a Korean or Japanese brand in securing a COE. But is there a fairer way to allocate the limited resources? Perhaps, COE could be categorized by the car's Open Market Value (OMV) instead of capacity. OMV is assessed by the Singapore Customs, based on the price actually paid or payable for the goods when sold for export to the country of importation. This price includes purchase price, freight, insurance and all other charges incidental to the sale and delivery of the car to Singapore. To ensure that a middle income Singaporean is not out-priced in the COE hunt, Cat A COE could be classified as cars of OMV below S$20,000. Cars with OMV of between S$20,001 to S$35,000 could be classified under Cat B. In this scenario, a Corolla buyer would not be going after the same piece of COE as a wealthy Volvo S60 T4 buyer. Rather, this would put the 1.6-litre S60 and the 2.0-litre Camry in the same category, which I believe should make more sense. Cat E COE could be classified as cars with OMV of S$35,001 and above. Car sales dominated by luxury brands are unheard of in other countries. It is time to put things back to normal.
  20. Diesel powered cars are expected to be a huge draw among buyers next year when a new emission based tax system kicks in on January. The new emission based tax scheme called - Carbon Emissions-based Vehicle Scheme (CEVS) grants tax rebates from $5,000 to $20,000 for new cars that emits no more that 160g/km. Additionally any new car that emits more than 210g/km will be charged extra tariffs ranging from $5,000 to $20,000 from July 2013. On top of the CEVS rebates, the annual special diesel tax would be slashed to $0.40 per cubic centimetre (cc) from the current $1.25. Thanks to advanced technologies and engineering methods, diesel cars which have met the Euro V emission standards generally emit up to 30 percent lesser carbon dioxide than petrol powered counterparts - a possible reason why diesel car sales could outnumber petrol variants. In the local scene - diesel cars mainly from Jaguars and Land Rovers captured a 1.3 percent market share of new car sales in the first ten months of this year - a sharp rise from 0.2 percent two years ago. The figure is set to rise as high as 15 percent in the next few years. Even in neighbouring country Indonesia, the market share for diesel cars rose from 0 to 16 percent two years ago. The new CEVS Scheme and cleaner, possibly cheaper diesel cars set to be introduced from next year, is seen to affect buying habits of local motorists. For example the people
  21. [extract] The 1.4-litre TSI variant of the VW Passat has finally arrived in Singapore although it has been available in Europe for some time now. The new 1.4-litre Passat now takes over as the base model of the range from the 1.8-litre. It epitomizes the rising
  22. Deeq

    A day with the McLaren MP4-12C

    What a way to kick start the weekend, sgCarMart (and some other lucky folks) spent the whole Saturday morning with the incredible McLaren MP4-12C at Changi Exhibition Eentre. Chances like this don't come often, so it was definitely worth waking up early on a Saturday morning. I have no idea how you can ever learn to appreciate any other car after driving a McLaren?? The MP4-12C is still new and while it is not the F1 successor, it was still an awesome experience, and as always we managed to take some great photos. Enjoy the shots!
  23. Deeq

    A day with the all new Toyota 86

    As most of you know, whenever a new car is launched into the local automotive market, sgCarMart writes a honest review about it, along with awesome photos to spice it up. Photoshoots can take a whole day with 3 to 4 of the team going around this little island, finding new locations to give our viewers amazing photos. For the Toyota 86, it wasn't an easy task making sure the photos portray exactly how amazing the car looks inside out. So before the actual review comes out on sgCarMart's articles page, we'd like to give you guys a sneak preview of this little red devil on the roads. Enjoy the pics ;)
  24. [extract] A taxi service company by the name of Taxi-E started the first electric taxi program in Amsterdam towards the end of 2011. The initial batch of vehicle consists of twelve Nissan Leafs. Some six months later, this fleet of twelve green warriors has clocked up around 250,000km. As the service is greatly appreciated by the Dutch citizens, Taxi-E plans to expand the number of EVs in their fleet, although the actual figure is not specified. The company
  25. PetrolHead

    Low Income workers gets aid from NTUC

    According to a latest Straits Times article, local labour union National Trade Union Congress (NTUC) aims to help low income workers upgrade their live-hood and monthly income range by providing subsidiaries of up to 90% to obtain a Class 3 or 4 driving licences. People whom obtain them can apply for better paying jobs in the transportation industry. A Class 3 licence can cost up to $2,000 yet under the new scheme, qualified and successful applicants only end up paying $200. This scheme is only for all Singaporeans and Permanent Residents whom are seeking or considering jobs at the transport and logistics industry, which is seeing a severe shortage of manpower. To qualify you must be currently earning less than $1,700, or below $1,400 per household member a month. All successful applicants will also receive a training allowance and can finish the course in a faster pace of nine months. Jobs including delivery, dispatch or bus drivers will be offered after successfully obtaining their licences. NTUC aims to place 5,000 locals or PR's in transport and logistics based jobs that pays more than $1,500 by the year 2015 and wants to attract mainly the locals and PR's in an industry largely dominated by foreign workers.
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