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Mercedes-Benz unveils its revamped G-Class


The all-new G-Class makes its public debut at the Detroit auto show in G550 form. Completely redeveloped and fitted with a 4.0-liter V8 biturbo gasoline engine offering 427ps and 450 lb-ft of torque at 2,000rpm to 4,750rpm, despite near-identical looks to its predecessor plenty has changed for the Mercedes-Benz SUV.

Ford’s F150 pickup gets its first diesel motor


Developed by the powertrain team behind the 6.7-liter Power Stroke engine for super duty trucks, the all-new 3.0-liter V6 Power Stroke unit promises 250ps, 440 lb-ft of torque, and an anticipated 5175kg of towing capacity.

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In light of Fisker's solid-state battery breakthrough and claims of a one minute charge time, will this electric vehicle technology development kick-start mass BEV uptake? 


Hyundai opens Russian plant

Hyundai Motor Company, South Korea’s largest automaker, officially opened its manufacturing plant in St. Petersburg, Russia, today.

With mass production scheduled to begin in January next year, Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Rus (HMMR), a fully-owned subsidiary of Seoul-based Hyundai Motor, will have its annual production targeted at 105,000 vehicles in the first year, which will be increased to 150,000 units per year in 2012.

Hyundai Motor now has six production facilities outside its homeland with the completion of HMMR, including USA, China, India, Turkey and the Czech Republic. Besides the Russian Federation’s Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, the grand opening ceremony of HMMR was attended by six hundred VIPs, company executives and members.

“Hyundai Motor Company plans to create 5,300 jobs by 2012 in St. Petersburg together with eleven parts suppliers from Korea and, furthermore, contribute to the advancement of Russia’s automotive industry by developing and supporting local automotive parts manufacturers,” Hyundai chairman Chung Mong-Koo said.

There are about 2,000 people currently working at the plants of HMMR and its suppliers. A large number of Russian employees were sent to Hyundai’s plants in Korea and the Czech Republic for abroad training and acquired professional skills to build high-quality cars.

From steel stamping to assembly, the Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Rus carries out full-cycle manufacturing, being the first foreign OEM to have such a complete facility in Russia. The presence of a stamping shop will allow Hyundai to produce high-end stamped panels while having better control over production costs. In addition, the plant is equipped with modern state-of-the-art facilities that provide a high level of automation. For instance, the automation ratio in the welding shop is estimated to be more than 50% and Hyundai Motor’s goal is to increase that number to 80% in the near future.

Hyundai Motor also unveiled the first car to be produced at HMMR – the Solaris, a four-door sub-compact sedan that is equipped with many new features tailored to meet local needs. It will be powered by the modern Gamma engine, 1.6-liter or 1.4-liter DOHC in-line four cylinder gasoline engines that feature multiport fuel injection with CVVT. By replacing the old Alpha engine of its predecessor with Gamma, the sedan promises more power and torque, as well as improved fuel economy, in keeping with Hyundai's pledge to be the industry's eco-leader.

Hyundai Motor plans to sell 85,000 units of Solaris annually in Russia starting 2011 including the five-door hatchback model that will join the line-up later that year.



22 September 2010


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