Category Archives: Vehicles

Tokyo’s Terra Motors decided the world’s first mass production of Electric 3-wheelers in Asia

Terra Motors decided the world’s first mass production of Electric 3-wheelers which can be charged by AC power. Terra Motors’ prototype is completed this April, and they plan to produce 10,000 sets of electric 3-wheelers in 2013.

In Asian countries, 3-wheeler market has expanded rapidly, because it is cheap and freight is large, compare to cars. For example, in India, the number of three-wheelers is increasing twice by these five-years. And the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh also shows the same transition.

It is thought that electric-ization of the three-wheel taxi in Asia progresses rapidly, because of aggravation of air pollution, the high price and constant shortage of gasoline. For example, in India, gasoline cost has increased also 2.5 times by these ten-years, so the demand to the cut in fuel consumption by electric-izing is serious. By replacing a three-wheel taxi to electric one, the annual income of taxi driver can be raised by about 3 times.

They plan to establish branch office in India in this summer, and aim at world top share acquisition in 2014.

Via EPR Network
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Mitsubishi Motors Refines the Legendary Pajero

Official Mitsubishi News – MMAL’s CEO Mutsuhiro Oshikiri said the new-look Pajero line-up caters for four-wheel drive enthusiasts at all levels.

“From the entry-level GLX to the luxury Exceed, there is a Pajero to suit all budgets and to cater for all on and off-road needs,” Oshikiri said.

The Pajero is available with a powerful, fuel-efficient 3.2-litre Common Rail turbo diesel engine with the option of a 3.8-litre MIVEC petrol engine in the Exceed model. The Common Rail turbo diesel delivers a massive 147kW of power at 3,800 rpm and 441Nm of torque at 2,000rpm while providing a smooth and fuel-efficient ride of 9.0L/100kms.

The MIVEC petrol engine option provides up to 184kW of power at 6,000rpm and torque of 329Nm at 2,750 rpm while delivering minimal fuel consumption of 13.5L/100km and a comfortable drive.

With such impressive power and torque, the Pajero’s huge three-tonne towing capacity means everything from a boat or caravan to a trailer can be towed with confidence. With flexible seating for up to seven people, the Pajero is the ultimate family car and because the third row of seats can be completely removed or folded and stored under the rear floor, there’s even more room to fit everything in. The addition of rear differential lock as standard across the 13MY Pajero range boosts the versatility of Mitsubishi’s legendary four-wheel drive.

The Pajero range offers outstanding occupant and driver safety utilising the latest Mitsubishi safety technology. Standard safety equipment includes Mitsubishi’s RISE body protection along with front driver and passenger, side and curtain SRS airbags and reversing camera to enhance driver visibility and awareness.

All Pajeros are equipped with MATT (Mitsubishi All Terrain Technology) which delivers superior off-road control and outstanding on-road safety and handling. To bolster the MATT package, 13MY Pajeros now come with rear differential lock as standard across the range. MATT incorporates a number of systems including Active Stability and Traction Control, ABS braking system with EBD and Super Select 4WD II. Super Select 4WD II lets the driver alternate between 2WD and 4WD modes at speeds of up to 100 kilometres per hour on any surface, making the switch from on-road fuel efficiency to off-road traction simple.

Available colour choices across the 2013 Pajero range include Cool Silver, Graphite, Champagne, Ironbark, Warm White, White and pearlescent Pitch Black.

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Admiral Reveals Prices At The Pumps Fuelling Anger Amongst UK Motorists

Admiral has revealed the results of new research which shows more than 9 out of 10 UK motorists feel ripped off by the current cost of fuel and a similar number are worried that the price of fuel is going to continue to increase.

Car insurance expert Admiral commissioned YouGov to survey more than 3,000 drivers as part of its annual Admiral Survey of Motorists. The statistics showed 93% agree that they feel ripped off and 89% worry that the price of fuel will continue to increase. When questioned as to why they believed fuel costs are so high, respondents overwhelmingly blamed the UK Government, with over three quarters (76%) saying it is most to blame. It was followed by oil companies (41%), world affairs out of the public’s control (25%) and petrol retailers (20%). In fact, 73% agreed they believe the Government is trying to price motorists off the road.

With the average price of fuel per litre standing at £1.40 for unleaded and £1.44 for diesel, the driving public think a fair price for a litre is considerably lower at 92p for unleaded and 94p for diesel according to the research.

Sue Longthorn, Admiral managing director, said: “Motorists are clearly annoyed at the current cost of fuel, and don’t see the price dropping anytime soon. With the proportion of the price at the pumps made up of duty and VAT, it’s clear that motorists see the Government as the biggest culprits when it comes to inflated fuel prices.”

The current cost of fuel is certainly having an impact on the motoring public as over half (57%) have reduced the amount of driving they do due to the cost of fuel while two fifths (40%) have had to cut back on essential spending in order to be able to afford fuel.

Sue continued: “Interestingly, our research shows that some motorists could turn this frustration into action as 42% would consider protesting publically about the cost of fuel. I’m sure no one wants to see a repeat of the scenes in recent years of petrol stations running dry and enormous queues.”

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Hengehold Trucks Using Social Media to Improve Customer Service

Hengehold Trucks, a provider of quality pre-owned commercial vehicles, has announced an alternative method to alerting their customers of new vehicles arrivals into their inventory. Hengehold Trucks will be using social media, Twitter, for instant updates on recent additions to their sales inventory. Customers can now see what vehicles are available without having to wait for Hengehold Trucks’ monthly newsletter for the information.

Within the last month, Hengehold Truck has added over 30 new vehicles to their inventory, bringing their current total to over 90 used commercial vehicles. The inventory includes a wide range of commercial vehicles from mini cargo vans, box vans, passenger vans, pickup trucksutility trucksflatbed trucks, stakes trucks, and dump trucks.

“I have bought several trucks from Hengehold over the years and there is a reason I keep going back. The quality of their used vehicles is unmatched. They have very clean vehicles and a pretty good selection of them at that. They go through an extensive inspection on each vehicle. I have purchased four vehicles and have never had the problem,” said Sally M., a Hengehold Trucks’ customer. (Source:http://www.insiderpages.com/b/3710515810/hengehold-motor-co-palo-alto-1)

Hengehold Trucks has served costumers in many places beside California such as Saipan, Marinia Island, Seattle, Washington, San Antonio, Texas, and Salt Lake City, Utah. Their primary customers come from a diverse collection representing many industries as well as customers from universities, government agencies, and individuals.

To get the latest updates of Hengehold Trucks’ new commercial vehicles, follow them on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/htrucks.

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Europcar’s Lost Property Reveals The Secret Life Of Its Hire Cars

Europcar the leader in car hire services in Europe for business and leisure users, hires out thousands of vehicles every day. But the variety of weird and wonderful items left by customers never fails to puzzle Europcar staff.

Unsurprisingly, sunglasses, CDs and loose change are the most common items left in Europcar vehicles. However, some customers carry more intriguing cargo when they travel, as Europcar’s lost property department has recently reported. Some of the more unusual items found in Europcar vehicles include 30 plants, two 6×10 ft. oil paintings, a live mouse in a cage, hedge trimmer and ashes in an urn.

The urn of ashes was found when a vehicle was returned by a car hire at Belfast airportcustomer. The ashes of the customer’s mother had been brought over from South Africa and the customer was relieved to have them back so that she could scatter them at her mother’s birth place.

And all the glasses that go unclaimed are recycled as part of Europcar’s ‘Go Green’ pledge.

Perhaps the best item was left behind by a car hire in Blackpool customer. It was a life-size dummy, dressed as an old lady and left in the boot of a Ford Focus. The Europcar driver had the fright of his life when he thought he’d found a body.

“Judging from our lost property, our vehicles have a tale to tell,” said Ken McCall, Managing Director, Europcar UK Group. “But our staff always go out of their way to reunite our customers with their forgotten items, no matter how bizarre.”

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SEAT Brings in Dual Vocation Training System

SEAT has announced it will replace the current training system in its Apprentices School with a dual one, based on the German system. This will combine theory and practice, and provide students with solid professional experience. The new syllabus will increase the number of hours by 57% (from 2,950 to 4,625) in comparison to the current system, and gives equal importance to training and work in terms of hours.

The new dual training model at SEAT’s Apprentices School will be a three-year course of study. Students will sign a training and apprenticeship contract, and all will receive a monthly payment. First-year apprentices will receive 250 Euros, second-year students 420 Euros, and third-year students 530 Euros.

Josef Schelchshorn, SEAT’s Vice-president for Human Resources, expressed his great satisfaction at the introduction in Spain of a system similar to the German one. “The project means a quantum leap in quality for our School. We are broadening and improving the training of apprentices before they join SEAT, while at the same time forging closer links with the world of work”.

Schelchshorn added that, “it is a matter of great pride for SEAT to be able to contribute to Spanish society in the form of quality training and employment.”

To date SEAT has been offering two years of Middle Grade vocational training cycle, completed with an additional one-year training course to provide students with better qualifications before joining SEAT. The syllabus now becomes broader: 1,700 work-hours are included in one of the company’s production plants, whereas to date 600 hours had been devoted to practical work in workshops. Productive practical work is also introduced in the training centre itself in order to respond to the needs of some company technical departments, allowing students to put their theoretical knowledge to practical use.

Also, first-year students will be provided with 160 hours of hands-on in-factory training in July, to which a total number of 200 hours for English language training will be added in the second and third years, as well as the continuous specialised training offered to those workers already on the SEAT workforce. Each apprentice will also have a personal tutor for the duration of the apprenticeship.

For the current academic year 2012-2013, SEAT will have an intake of 61 new first-year student apprentices, chosen from a record number of 400 applicants for the centre. As has been the case to date, once the apprentices have successfully concluded their three-year course of study, they will be entitled to join SEAT on a long-term contract. Thanks to the new contractual relationship provided by dual training, the students’ links and identification with the company will be strengthened, while at the same time increasing the attractiveness of both the centre itself and of SEAT as an employer.

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Europcar Announces Winner Of Social Media Caraoke Competition

Europcar the leader in car hire services in Europe for leisure and business users, has crowned David Sodergren, from Edinburgh, the winner of its highly successful social media campaign.

The Europcar Caraoke Competition, which ran across both YouTube and Facebook, encouraged consumers to show off their star quality in a bid to find the UK’s best in-car karaoke performer.

With weekly prizes up for grabs and the grand prize of the Fiat 500, 148 videos were submitted which were watched by 79,578 members of the public via YouTube, as Europcar tapped into the consumer appetite for TV talent shows. David was chosen, based on hundreds of votes by the general public on the Europcar Facebook page, winning with their rendition of The Final Countdown by Europe.

Commenting on the success of the Caraoke Competition, Ken McCall, Managing Director, Europcar UK Group said: “We are absolutely delighted for our winner, David, and want to thank everyone who took part in this very successful competition. It was another example of Europcar’s focus on engaging with consumers, using social media to create a buzz around our brand by reaching out to a new audience. We had a 33% increase in Facebook likes since the start of the competition so we’re very pleased with the results achieved.

“As market leader, Europcar continues to look at new ways to communicate with our customers. We continue to harness the power of social media to raise brand awareness and encourage consumers to explore Europcar’s innovative range of car hire services.”

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SEAT Sets Its Sights on Russia

SEAT has announced the reinforcement of its presence in Russia while strengthening its international expansion plans. The Spanish company, participating in the Moscow Motor Show, has opened a new chapter hand-in-hand with the Volkswagen Group importer to profit from the experience of the company in this market.

So far this year SEAT has doubled the size of its network in Russia, and already has 22 dealerships there, located in Moscow and St. Petersburg, plus other major cities such as Yekaterinburg, Chelyabinsk, Nizhny Novgorod, Kazan and Rostov-on-Don. SEAT will open three new dealerships before the year’s end, bringing the total number to 25. The aim of opening further dealerships is to cover most of the regions of the European part of the country.

SEAT President and Executive Committee Chairman James Muir stated Russia is yet another example of company’s strategy to open up new markets. He said: “We see great potential for SEAT in markets like Russia. Great design, high quality, outstanding engineering and innovative technology bring something new and fresh to the dynamic Russian automotive market.”

“The Moscow Motor Show represents a key stepping stone in the ambitions of SEAT in Russia,” Muir concluded.

At the Moscow Motor Show – the country’s most important annual automotive industry event – SEAT has announced the growth of the product range in Russia with the start of sales of the Alhambra MPV this autumn. The Alhambra is in addition to the three models currently marketed in Russia: three versions of the Ibiza (3-door SC, 5-door, and ST estate), the Leon hatchback, and the crossover SEAT Altea Freetrack, all of which are built at the Martorell plant on the outskirts of Barcelona.

Besides these four models, SEAT is also displaying the IBX, a hybrid crossover concept car than won accolades from the press and public at last year’s Geneva Motor Show for its winning combination of design and outstanding versatility.

Since Russia is a priority market for SEAT in both the short- and long-term, it has its own infrastructure in Moscow in charge of rolling out the development plan. Russia is a country with strong growth potential, and which aspires to make itself the largest car market in Europe over the next few years. In 2011 more than 2.6 million cars were sold – a figure beaten only by Germany (almost 3.2 million units) – and sales have grown 14.3% during the first half of 2012, exceeding 1.4 million vehicles.

SEAT exports about four of every five cars it manufactures to 75 different countries. One of its aims is to increase this percentage by opening up new markets, including China, where marketing activities began last April. During the first half of 2012 SEAT has achieved strong growth in Mexico (10,214 cars sold, +20.5%), Algeria (5,191, +150.0%) and Israel (3,787, 85.7%). The company has also improved its deliveries over the same period in such competitive European markets as Germany (28,404, +8.0%), the United Kingdom (19,763, +6.8%) and Switzerland (4,159, +19.4%).

In parallel, this year the Spanish brand finds itself in the full flood of an unprecedented product offensive. Over the next few months the return of the Toledo and the new Leon will be added to the Mii and the new Ibiza, already on sale. Growth in the number of models will enable SEAT to broaden its market coverage and provide it with the optimal basis for continued growth in its export markets.

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Avoiding the Perils of Dangerous Car Modifications

TorqueCars http://www.torquecars.com, one of the UK’s leading online car modding communities today launched an awareness campaign to highlight the dangers of poor quality DIY car modifications by inexperienced owners.

We see many modified cars that are downright dangerous or at least going to be unreliable. It seems that lots of car owners with minimal knowledge are making changes to their cars without realising the implications. By highlighting these problems TorqueCars hope to minimise the negative impact created by these low budget, poor quality modified cars, and focus on a professional approach to car modification.

It only takes a few high profile incidents involving poorly modified cars before the clamour is raised for legislation outlawing all modifications or restricting the choice of modifications people can do.

Some young drivers seem to think that the more noise the car makes the faster it goes. Experience proves this to be incorrect and often these large exhausts and noisy induction kits have a negative effect on the cars performance and power.

One particular area of concern is with car electrics. Inexperienced DIYers will often overload circuits or hack into wires for power without making proper provisions for vibrations wear and adequate electrical insulation. These can often short out potentially causing a fire or at least creating a breakdown.

The most common electrical mistake is putting a wire straight through a bulk head without placing a rubber grommet around the wire to shield it from rubbing on the bulk head and wearing through.

A holistic approach to car modification is required where increased power is matched with up rated braking and handling. Dropping a 2.0 Turbo engine into a car which originally had a much smaller engine will offer a dramatic power hike but the brakes and suspension will be unable to handle this causing a potentially dangerous situation.

The main motivation for modifying a car is to maximise the drivers enjoyment of the vehicle. Most modifications merely release the full potential of a car where manufacturers have detuned or restricted the car in some way for economic or reputational reasons.

It is also fair to assume that each driver has their own personal preferences when it comes to a cars power band, handling characteristics and the aesthetic design of their car.

A well modified car should be safer than the standard unmodified one due to the stronger or uprated parts introduced. Braking distances can be dramatically shortened, the risk of skidding on a deceptive bend or corner or losing control should also be lower.

By increasing an engines efficiency there is often an additional saving in fuel consumption. This fact is particularly true when it comes to tuning modern turbo diesel engines.

It’s not just poorly modified cars that present a danger; poorly maintained cars are just as big a risk. According to TorqueCars senior partner Waynne Smith, “if you walk around any public car park you will find many cars will illegal tyres. The tread depth will be below the legal minimum or there will be damage to the sidewall of the tyre. We try hard to promote responsible car ownership to our members and readers of our articles.”

The forums at TorqueCars are a great place to go to discuss your car tuning project in details with experienced car modifiers and enthusiasts from around the world. By garnering as much information as you can you’ll be better placed to avoid the common pitfalls associated with modified cars.

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Europcar Reveals Ace Of Spades As The Top In-Car Tune

Europcar, the leader in car hire services in Europe for leisure and business users, is on the hunt for the best in-car karaoke singer.

With its fun Caraoke Competition for the summer, Europcar is calling on the public to post their personal performances in their ‘car’ on Facebook. The most entertaining performance, as voted for by visitors to Europcar’s Facebook page, will win the grand prize of a Fiat 500 car.

“You only need to sit in a traffic jam and look at the driver in the car next to you or behind you to realise that in-car singing is a great stress reliever,” said Ken McCall, Managing Director, Europcar UK. “So we thought we’d mount our own hunt for the best in-car karaoke singer with our Caraoke Competition. And there’s a great incentive; the best performance voted for by visitors to our Facebook page will win a Fiat 500 car.”

Marking the launch of the competition, Europcar asked its own UK staff about their in-car singing habits.

More than 88% admitted to being secret in-car singers and the favourite song to sing at the top of their lungs whilst in the car was ‘Ace of Spades’ by Motorhead. Least favourite was pop classic ‘Dreadlock Holiday’ by 10cc. The top 3 selected songs were ‘Ace of Spades’, ‘Dancing in the Moonlight’ by Toploader and ‘The Final Countdown’ by Europe.

The competition plays on the unspoken but often witnessed, urge motorists have to sing out loud in their car, when they hear their favourite tune on the radio. With so many singers and wannabe performers entering talent shows but falling short of their big break, Europcar’s Caraoke provides a great opportunity for the more eclectic singers and entertainers to prove their worth.

The idea of the Europcar Caraoke Competition is to inspire people to show their star quality and get them to record their favourite song from a list of 10 classics including the Troggs hit, ‘Wild Thing’ and ‘Lady Marmalade’ by Labelle and then upload their videos to Facebook using YouTube’s API feed. Entrants are encouraged to campaign for themselves by collecting votes for their Caraoke videos through their own Facebook friends and groups.

In addition to the grand prize, a series of weekly prizes will be given until August 22nd including Amazon e-vouchers, Eastern Airways flights, an overnight stay plus dinner and breakfast at a Hand Picked Hotels property, Garmin Sat Nav systems, Samsung Galaxy Tablets, Driving Experience packages and Spa Days at the luxurious 5 Star hotel resort Stoke Park. Weekly prize winners will be selected via a prize draw giving entrants more chances to win prizes.

Promoting the competition, Europcar will also be hosting two road show events to encourage shoppers to participate in its Caraoke Competition. Europcar is encouraging people to make a date in their diaries to exhibit their talents by recording their videos in the Europcar Caraoke car at the road shows taking place in Bluewater, Kent at the end of July and the Bullring, Birmingham on Saturday August 11th.

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Europcar Searches Southern England For The Latest Karaoke Singing Sensation

Europcar, the leader in car hire services in Europe for leisure and business users, has launched a competition to find the best in-car karaoke singer in the UK. And shoppers visiting Bluewater on the 28th July 2012 will have a chance to record their entry at a special Europcar roadshow.

The car is the stage in the latest cutting-edge and engaging social media campaign from Europcar, which plays on the karaoke culture and builds on the huge popularity of talent shows. With so many singers and wannabe performers entering talent shows but failing to hit the big time, Europcar’s Caraoke Competition provides a great opportunity for the more eclectic singers and entertainers to prove their worth and drive away in a cool Fiat 500.

The idea is to get people recording their favourite song from a list of 10 classics, including the hit by Europe, ‘The Final Countdown’ and ‘Dancing in the Moonlight’ by Toploader and then uploading their videos to Facebook. Then consumers will be encouraged to vote for their favourite videos and share them on Facebook using the YouTube API feed. The performance with the most votes will win the grand prize of a Fiat 500.

Whilst motorists can film their own videos in their own time, Europcar is making it even easier for Kent residents to join in the fun and show off their talents by hosting a special live roadshow at the Bluewater shopping centre on 28th July on the Ground Floor, outside Marks & Spencer, from 10:30 – 18:00. Budding karaoke performers will be able to record their own videos for immediate uploading to Facebook.

In addition to the grand prize, a series of weekly prizes will be given out until August 22nd including Amazon e-vouchers, Eastern Airways flights, an overnight stay plus dinner and breakfast at the exclusive Hand Picked Hotel, Garmin Sat Nav systems, Samsung Galaxy Tablets, Driving Experience packages and Spa Days at the luxurious 5 Star hotel resort Stoke Park. Weekly prize winners will be selected via a prize draw giving entrants more chances to win prizes.

“Our job, as market leader is to set the standard across the board,” said Ken McCall, Managing Director, Europcar UK Group. “From car hire to social media strategies and campaigns our objective is to keep Europcar at the forefront of the marketplace by implementing innovative techniques that drive the business forward and change consumer expectations of car hire.

“Caraoke is a light-hearted campaign and we want Kent shoppers and motorists to get into the groove with us and have some fun. With talent shows becoming increasingly popular, Europcar is urging shoppers to come down to Bluewater and show-off their singing voices. A new car could be theirs, and it might be the big break they’ve been looking for.”

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Europcar Launches New Social Media Campaign

Europcar, the leader in car hire services in Europe for leisure and business users, has launched an innovative new social media campaign for the summer.

Using YouTube and Facebook, the Europcar Caraoke Competition sets out to find the best in-car karaoke singer in the country – with a grand prize of a Fiat 500 car plus weekly prizes up for grabs. The campaign is another example of Europcar’s thought leading marketing strategy, following 2011’s multi-faceted freeDeliver campaign, engaging customers and social media savvy consumers alike.

The Caraoke campaign plays on the karaoke culture and builds on the huge popularity of talent shows. With so many singers and wannabe performers entering talent shows but falling short of their big break, Europcar’s Caraoke provides a great opportunity for the more eclectic singers and entertainers to prove their worth and drive away in a cool Fiat 500.

The social media campaign will be focused on promoting the X-factor style competition and be hosted on Facebook, utilising the YouTube API feed.

The Europcar Caraoke competition comprises two aspects to encourage maximum engagement amongst motorists and inspire people to show their star qualities. The idea is to get people recording their favourite song from a list of 10 classics, including the Troggs hit, ‘Wild Thing’ and ‘Dancing in the Moonlight’ by Toploader, and then uploading their videos to YouTube.

The second part of the campaign aims to get consumers voting for their favourite videos and sharing them via Facebook. The performance with the most votes will win the car.

In addition to the grand prize, a series of weekly prizes will be given out between July 25th and August 22nd including Amazon e-vouchers, Eastern Airways flights, an overnight stay plus dinner and breakfast at a Hand Picked Hotel, Garmin Sat Nav systems, Samsung Galaxy Tablets, Driving Experience packages and Spa Days at the luxurious 5 Star hotel resort Stoke Park. Weekly prize winners will be selected via a prize draw by Promo Veritas giving entrants more chances to win prizes.

Promoting the competition, Europcar will also be hosting two road show events to encourage shoppers to participate in its Caraoke competition. These will take place in Bluewater, Kent on Saturday 28th July and the Bullring, Birmingham on Saturday August 11th. Europcar is urging people to make a date in their diaries to exhibit their talents by recording their videos.

The totally interactive campaign reinforces Europcar’s position as number one in the European car hire marketplace as it brings a more personal and friendly voice to the brand in a market where social interaction with car hire firms is usually only one way.

“Our job, as market leader is to set the standard across the board,” said Ken McCall, Managing Director, Europcar UK Group. “From car hire to social media strategies and campaigns our objective is to keep Europcar at the forefront of the marketplace by implementing innovative techniques that drive the business forward and change consumer expectations of car hire.

“With Caraoke we aim to reach a new audience; raising awareness of Europcar’s innovative car hire services to the social media savvy population.”

The Caraoke competition will be hosted on the company’s Facebook page, found at:http://www.facebook.com/EuropcarUK

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SEAT Delivers Three Electric Cars to Barcelona

SEAT recently delivered three new electric cars to Barcelona where the vehicles will be tested by Barcelona City Hall in its municipal car fleet for an initial six-month trial period, during which SEAT will gather information and assess performance prior to mass production of electric vehicles. With the hybrid and electric vehicles, SEAT is developing two different technologies, placing the company in an optimal position to respond to market demand.

Ramón Paredes, Executive Vice-president for Governmental and Institutional Relations at SEAT and the Volkswagen Group in Spain, declared that “once more SEAT is showing its links to emblematic projects such as development of the electric car for the future of the country”. He also underscored the fact that “we are the only brand with the capacity to think through, develop and produce an electric vehicle in Spain.”

Dr. Matthias Rabe, SEAT Executive Vice-president for R&D commented: “Delivering these electric vehicles to institutional fleets covers a new stage in our electric motoring strategy.

“SEAT’s future is electric and we are opting for diversification of alternative technologies so as to cater to different motoring needs.”

Within the framework of this strategy, SEAT has loaned one e-Altea XL to Endesa, and another to the Catalan Energy Institute (ICAEN); a further two TwinDrive – one to each of the two organisations mentioned – will be made available over the forthcoming weeks. The company is immersed in the first stage of the introduction of an electric car and envisages the loan of further vehicles to different governmental departments, institutions, and private companies interested in eco-friendly fleets over the forthcoming months.

The Altea XL Electric Ecomotive and the Leon TwinDrive Ecomotive are two vehicles with different but complementary technologies. The Altea XL Electric Ecomotive can be used in wide variety of different circumstances, and for that reason is SEAT’s first all-electric car. It has a range of 135 kilometres, a power output of 115 hp (85kW), an engine torque of 270 Nm and a top speed of 135 kph. Of the several new features found on it, two of the most striking are battery location under the rear seats and the boot, meaning no reduction in passenger compartment space, and the photovoltaic panels on the roof, cutting energy requirements for the vehicle’s air-conditioning.

The Leon TwinDrive Ecomotive couples the advantages of emission-free driving to the range of a conventional petrol-engine car. The TwinDrive allows for all-electric or hybrid driving, meaning no change whatsoever in driving habits or life style for customers. It has a range of 52 kilometres in electric mode, with a top speed of 120 kph. In mixed mode (electric and combustion) consumption is 1.7 litres, emissions are under 39 g/km, and top speed is 170 kph.

SEAT’s commitment to sustainable motoring and environmental protection extends to other brand vehicles already on the market. SEAT has a long track record of producing low-emission cars – for the record, 70% of cars marketed in Spain have emissions below 130 g/km of CO2.

Additionally SEAT is involved in other projects to promote electrical motoring in Spain. One of them – headed by SEAT – is CENIT VERDE, a public-private initiative comprising companies from different sectors, universities and research centres, and backed by the Spanish government. This project takes a global approach to research into the foundations for a successful introduction of the electric car in Spain.

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Admiral Asks ‘What If Kids Made Cars?’

Admiral recently asked children aged 5 and 7 years of age to draw the car of their dreams before the company enlisted the help of an automotive design student to turn the kids’ imaginative ideas into a design reality.

The resulting design, based on drawings of their ultimate cars incorporates various features from the children’s drawings. The outcome is a car that flies, hovers using blue flame boosters, has heart-shape wheels with extendable legs so it can jump over other vehicles, outdoor speakers and a giant water pistol.

The ultimate kids car is also controlled by a computer, has a sofa bed, curtains, plants for fresh air, a disco ball and of course, a sweet, chocolate, popcorn and ice cream dispenser.

Managing Director of the car insurance specialist, Dave Halliday, said: “As grown-ups, we might spend a fair amount of time dreaming about the cars we’d buy if our budgets allowed, but we thought it would be fun to see the dream car a child’s imagination would come up with.

“We had no doubt their drawings would be terrific and the children certainly didn’t disappoint. The final design is pretty fanciful but it’s still recognisable as a car and looks like it would be great fun to travel in.”

Admiral has put together an online gallery of all the children’s drawings so visitors to the company’s website can see the inspiration behind the final car design. The drawings are online at www.admiral.com/kidsandcars.

Dave Halliday continued: “You might think cars, driving and the topic of motoring is usually the conversation of adults, but that doesn’t mean children don’t have their own thoughts and ideas about it. We also created a hilarious video simply by letting the camera roll and asking children between the ages of 5 and 7 to share their thoughts on cars and motoring.”

The multicar insurance specialist has also released a new video atwww.admiral.com/kidsandcars where kids explain how to drive a car, reveal who’s the better driver in their family, what car they would like to drive and describe what different road signs mean.

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Europcar To Use Electric Bikes To Improve The Efficiency Of Its Delivery And Collection Service

Europcar, the leader in car hire services in Europe, is aiming to keep its customers moving throughout London this summer. The company has increased the use of electric bikes to improve the efficiency of its vehicle delivery and collection service, working in partnership with logistics company, AutoClenz.

Transport for London (TfL) has advised that, as much as possible, travellers should use public transport from mid-July through to September, but there will still be businesses and individuals that need the flexibility of being in their own vehicle, and Europcar believes car hire for specific journeys in and around London may be more convenient than people driving their own vehicles into the capital. Europcar has therefore taken the initiative to implement the most streamlined processes for car hire in London.

Europcar has worked with logistics company, AutoClenz, for more than a year, exploiting the efficiency and environmental benefits of the electric bikes used by AutoClenz delivery staff. Now, AutoClenz will be employing more delivery agents to carry out vehicle deliveries and collections on behalf of Europcar, using electric bikes across the capital. The electric bikes can be folded up and put into the boot of a car, enabling AutoClenz agents to deliver a hire vehicle on behalf of Europcar, retrieve the bike and slip through traffic to collect the next vehicle without delay or adding to congestion.

“There’s no question that getting around London during July and August will be more challenging,” said Ken McCall, Managing Director, Europcar UK Group. “But for some businesses and individuals there’s just no way to avoid using their vehicles rather than public transport. Our goal is to do as much as possible to make these journeys as stress-free, without adding to the congestion with our own delivery and collection vehicles.

“Working in partnership with AutoClenz, their delivery and collection agents will be able to get around more quickly than if they were on 4 wheels, especially around the more congested areas. This is part of our commitment to delivering the same quality service to our customers during this intensely busy period.

“Our partnership with AutoClenz is also an important part of our ‘Green Pledge’, helping us reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions. The electric bikes are light, clean and easy to load into vehicles.”

Deryck Worrall, Director of AutoClenz added: “We are investing in more electric bikes for our business as a whole as part of our commitment to a greener service. And through our partnership with Europcar we are pleased to be helping the market leader deliver a high quality customer experience, particularly when we know getting around London will be at its most challenging.”

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Admiral Adds £300 Cover For Child Seats, Pushchairs And Handbags To Multicar Policies

Admiral MultiCar is adding two new benefits to all its car insurance policies that start from 1st July onwards. MultiCar customers will be able to claim up to £300 for loss of or damage to child seats, booster seats, prams or pushchairs as a result of an accident, fire or theft. They will also be able to claim up to £300 for a handbag or its contents.

Admiral acting managing director, David Halliday, commented: “Being involved in an accident or having your car broken into can be an incredibly stressful experience, but this can made even worse for families due to the paraphernalia they need to carry in their car.

“Current laws require parents to secure their children in appropriate car seats or booster seats. These can be damaged after any accident, even if they don’t seem to be, it’s best to replace them as they may not function correctly in the future. The last thing a parent would want to do is risk their child’s safety so it’s better to be safe rather than sorry.”

Within the £300 cover for child equipment, MultiCar insurance customers will be able to claim up to £50 for loss or damage to children’s accessories such as changing bags or sun blinds.

The new items covered are in addition to the standard cover of £100 for personal belongings damaged or stolen.

An Admiral MultiCar policy can hold up to five cars and offers a discount on all the vehicles on cover, the more cars on cover, the larger the discount. Admiral MultiCar is not available on any price comparison site. Visit admiral.com for more information or call 0844 848 4316 for a MultiCar insurance quote.

Via EPR Network
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Carrentals.co.uk Advises Olympics Fans to Book Summer Car Hire Soon

Leading online car hire price comparator Carrentals.co.uk has issued a warning to travellers heading to the UK for the Olympic Games this summer – book your car hire soon. The website has seen a steep rise in bookings for Olympics car hire recently and predicts that prices and availability will continue to be impacted.

Carrentals.co.uk reports that demand is up for car hire around the Olympic Games this summer, meaning that prices are rising too as supply shortens. As such the website has issued a warning to travellers – that they need to book their Olympics car hire as soon as possible. The site is currently home to deals such as car hire from London Gatwick Airport from only £14 per day.**

Carrentals.co.uk has more than 5 years’ experience in helping people compare all the best car hire deals around, from all the top names in the sector. As thousands of people prepare to head to London for the 2012 Olympic Games, Carrentals.co.uk can help them to get around on a budget – with deals such as car hire from just £16 per day from Heathrow Airport*.

Gareth Robinson, Managing Director of Carrentals.co.uk, commented, “We always like to try and offer people the best advice on car hire ahead of major events, and for the Olympics this year advance booking is essential. Car hire prices and availability are both still very likely to change between now and the start of the Games.”

The Carrentals.co.uk service compares car hire deals from up to 50 rental companies, including Alamo, Auto Europe, Avis, Budget, Hertz, Holiday Autos and Sixt, in over 15,000 locations worldwide. To compare the latest car hire deals visit www.carrentals.co.uk.

*Price correct at time of writing for 1 week car hire from July 26th for rentals collected at Heathrow Airport.

**Price correct at time of writing 1 week car hire from July 26th for rentals collected at Gatwick Airport.

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Carrentals.co.uk Introduces New, Enhanced Website

Online car hire price comparison specialist Carrentals.co.uk has announced the launch of its latest website, which it has put together in consultation with customers and site users.

The online comparator, which helps travellers and tourists source cheap car hire from more than 50 top name suppliers, surveyed its users and worked customer feedback into the new site’s design and functionality.

The end result is a site which offers users simpler navigation through search results, better filtering functionality and a faster, cleaner user interface.

Gareth Robinson, Managing Director of Carrentals.co.uk, says: “It’s great to be able to announce the introduction of our latest website incarnation, and we’re pleased to have been able to engage our users in the process. Customers will now be able to find cheap car hire around the world more quickly and easily than ever.”

“Our users should enjoy the improved navigation and simpler, cleaner interface – and we think that this will help us to consolidate our place at the top end of the travel industry.”

Since launching in 2003 Carrentals.co.uk has grown to become one of the UK’s leading car hire comparison websites booking over 650,000 rentals to date and celebrated its 5th birthday as a comparator in February 2012.

Carrentals.co.uk compares car hire to find the best available vehicle and price from up to 50 rental companies including Alamo, Auto Europe, Budget, Holiday Autos and Sixt, in over 15,000 locations worldwide.

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Europcar launches new mobile application on iPhone and Android

Europcar, the leading car rental company in Europe, has launched a new mobile application available on iPhone and Android. Easy to use with added value services, the new application makes booking a car more simple and enjoyable than ever. Customers can make reservations and search for details on any Europcar car hire locations worldwide, at the touch of a button. This new mobile application reflects Europcar’s commitment to support its customers in their mobility needs.

“The usage of mobile phones, and particularly smartphones, is playing an ever increasing role in society and statistics now show that around 25% of total mobile users shop using their smartphones. With the development of this mobile application, we therefore wish to accompany our customers at important steps of their everyday lives by providing them with a new booking experience that is simple and brings them added value. Development of digital services is a key component of our strategy to be a leading and innovative mobility actor,” explained Jehan de Thé, Europcar Group e-commerce Director.

Europcar’s new mobile applications have been developed to help customers throughout their rental experience, from identifying Europcar car hire locations to picking up and using the car.

The new optimized booking path requires only 3 steps to book a car:
– Define, time and place of rental
– Choose the vehicle
– Payment options (immediately or at the rental location)

During the booking, customers will also have the possibility to enrich their reservation with extras (e.g. child seats or a GPS/Sat Nav); at the end of the booking it is also possible to store personal data, in order to significantly speed up future bookings.

Europcar’s application offers added value functionalities such as augmented reality, allowing customers to use their mobile phone camera to visualise how to find the nearest station or, thanks to the ‘car finder’ function, customers can take a photo of where they parked, store this in the Europcar App and then use augmented reality to find their way back to the car.

Europcar will promote this new application through three videos, which will be available on Europcar’s YouTube page, pin-pointing possible different uses of the mobile application: for business customers, for a planned trip and for a last minute reservation.

Europcar also has an optimised mobile website, especially for customers who are not equipped with an Android or iPhone phone.

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121Carhire.com Advises Olympics Fans to Book Car Hire Well in Advance

Leading car hire bookings website 121carhire.com has reported high demand for car hire with just 50 days until the Olympic Games.

The website has seen bookings spike around the Olympics recently – with nearly 50% of reservations made for the period between 20 July and 11 August.

Sports fans from overseas have also been booking car rental in big numbers – with 121Carhire.com reporting reservations from places including New Zealand, Malaysia and Hong Kong.

Michael Bond, spokesperson for 121carhire.com, says, “We’ve seen a big jump in demand for cars lately, and with just 50 days until the Olympics we advise early booking.”

“With people travelling into the UK from all over the world the way to ensuring great value and plenty of choice is to book well in advance of the Games this summer.”

121Carhire.com reports that the top 5 countries booking Olympic Games car hire between 20 July and 11 August are:

Top 5 Countries Booking Car Hire –

1. Great Britain
2. USA
3. The Netherlands
4. Italy
5. Switzerland

To check the latest offers and availability, visit www.121carhire.com.

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