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Mercedes-Benz unveils its revamped G-Class

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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

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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? 

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Sunderland plant cements top spot

 The Nissan Sunderland plant is celebrating a record year of production, cementing its status as the UK's number one car producer.

There were 423,262 units manufactured in Sunderland last year, of which 81% were exported. Figures show that the Sunderland plant accounted for more than one in three of all passenger cars produced in the UK in 2010. The Nissan facility has now been the UK's biggest car producer in every year since 1998.

The previous record for production at the Nissan Sunderland plant stood at 386,555 units in 2008, which fell in 2009 as a result of the global financial crisis to 338,150. In 2010 production not only recovered but surpassed the previous record by 45,707 units.

Much of 2010’s success is down to the Nissan Qashqai. A third shift was added to the Qashqai line in May 2010, boosting annual production of Qashqai and Qashqai+2 to 271,188, up from 198,841 in 2009 and 224,989 in 2008.

Following the start of production in August there were 44,622 Nissan Jukes made at the plant. Earlier in the year, the Nissan Sunderland plant also produced 54,580 Nissan Micras, the last of which was made in July before production moved to India after 18 years.

The Nissan Note, which shares Line 2 at Sunderland Plant with the Nissan Juke, also performed strongly in 2010 with production increasing year-on-year from 50,880 to 52,872.

Nissan's vice president for Manufacturing in the UK, Kevin Fitzpatrick, commented: "2010 was a landmark year for the plant and represents a superb achievement by our workforce.

"This performance also reflects the popularity of the models we are producing in Sunderland, especially the Nissan Qashqai and the new Nissan Juke, which have both been designed, engineered and built in the UK.

"By focusing on cost competitiveness, quality and being responsive to fluctuating customer demand, we have experienced significant growth in our operation where others have declined. This winning formula will be the key to securing future new products and continued growth.”

28 January 2011


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