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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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Ford and Heinz collaborate on sustainable vehicle materials

Ford and Heinz are investigating the use of tomato fibers to develop sustainable, composite materials for use in vehicle manufacturing. Dried tomato skins could become the wiring brackets in a Ford vehicle or the storage bin a customer uses to hold coins and other small objects.
"We are exploring whether this food processing by-product makes sense for an automotive application," said Ellen Lee, plastics research specialist at Ford. "Our goal is to develop a strong, lightweight material that meets our vehicle requirements, while at the same time reducing our overall environmental impact."

Nearly two years ago, Ford began collaborating with Heinz, The Coca-Cola Company, Nike Inc. and Procter & Gamble to accelerate development of a plant-based plastic to help reduce the petroleum-based materials currently in use.
At Heinz, researchers were looking for innovative ways to recycle peels, stems and seeds from the more than two million tons of tomatoes the company uses annually to produce Heinz Ketchup.
"We are delighted that the technology has been validated," said Vidhu Nagpal, Heinz's associate director of research and development. "Although we are in the very early stages of research, and many questions remain, we are excited about the possibilities this could produce for both Heinz and Ford, and the advancement of sustainable 100% plant-based plastics."
In recent years, Ford has increased its use of recycled non-metal and bio-based materials. With cellulose fiber-reinforced console components and rice hull-filled electrical cowl brackets introduced in the last year, Ford's bio-based portfolio now includes eight materials in production. Other examples are coconut-based composite materials, recycled cotton material for carpeting and seat fabrics, plus soy foam seat cushions and head restraints.

11 June 2014


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