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Native Mobile Apps are the New Flash

I’m not that old, but I remember a past when Flash was on top. Before HTML5 was the hottest tech buzzword. Before CSS gradients were even a distant dream. Before jQuery was a household name. Before Steve Jobs hung Flash to a cross.

Back then, the web simply wasn’t advanced enough to create the experiences users wanted. Developers turned to Flash to fill in the gaps, while the open web evolved and eventually surpassed Flash’s capabilities. Flash was a great stopgap measure. But it outlived its usefulness and has been reduced to niche status. For Web development company visit Vivid Designs

Today, we’re seeing the nearly exact same scenario with native apps on mobile devices.

The vast majority of web apps no longer need a native counterpart. Native mobile apps are a temporary solution. We’re just over 4 years into the Appstore era and this has already become apparent. Open web technologies are catching up to the point that the vast majority of web apps no longer need a native counterpart.

Don’t try to tell me native apps are faster or allude to them having a “better experience.” That simply is no longer true. Sencha proved this last year. For a more detailed look just how far mobile web capabilities have come, see Benjamin De Cock’s excellent “Building iOS Web Apps in 2013.”

Most of today’s mobile apps add little more than a homescreen button. As it stands now, there is little reason most mobile apps to exist. Content-based sites do not need downloadable apps. I’m talking about NYTimes, WSJ, Wikipedia, Buzzfeed, TMZ, etc. These native apps add literally nothing of value to their web-based user experience. Even many more complex apps do not need native functionality. Many RSS readers, GTD apps, eCommerce apps and search apps add little more than a homescreen button. For Web development services in Bangalore visit Vivid Designs

In many cases, native apps are a considerable step backward from their web counterparts. As Thomas Baekdal points out, mobile apps are stuck in 2004. Much of the functionality that has become standard on the web — automatic updates, social sharing, scrolling — has been completely stripped out and ignored.

Today, there are only two pieces of functionality that necessitate a native app: camera access and push notifications. And the web is quickly working on filling both of these gaps.

Once people begin realize this, native mobile apps will be the same as Flash. Useful for games, but not much else.

Edit: Many have said that I’ve “missed the point about app stores facilitating monetization and distribution.” Let me be clear: I am not saying the app store business model is going anywhere. Web app stores exist and are growing rapidly. Thanks for reading! I’m Jim Silverman, the product designer behind MeetMidway. You can follow me on Medium, Twitter, or Dribbble.

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The Two Perspectives on XML

Silicon Publishing

I have been working with XML since it was a glimmer in the eye of Jon Bosak. In fact, before XML was conceived, there was SGML; this evolution of SGML represented a streamlining for the web, but at its core there was not much functional difference; in fact the new invention was defined as a mere SGML subset. The key concept of semantic markup is central to the core value of SGML as well as its “streamlined for mass consumption” child.

The two main perspectives I have seen are Document-centric and Data-centric. SGML initially appeared in support of document-centric work: managing all the technical documents or contracts of IBM or Boeing, for example. Charles Goldfarb has maintained that “SGML literally makes the infrastructure of modern society possible” and I think he’s right — hmm, should we blame him for the lengths to which humans have gone to destroy the earth? If you are looking for Website development services check Vivid Designs

The gentle document-centric world The document-centric world is really a direct continuation of SGML. When XML came out as a standard in 1998, those of us working with document-centric use cases became giddy with excitement, anticipating that the standards being proposed at the time (notably XML itself, XLink, XML Schema, RDF, XSL and pre-cursors to SVG) would finally facilitate tools that made publishing work for organizations that weren’t quite as big as IBM or the Department of Defense. The vision of a semantic web and ubiquitous multi-channel publishing, seemed to be growing a foundation in theories gaining critical mass, with apparent support of software companies. It appeared these vendors might actually adopt the standards of the committees they were sitting on. “Throw away Xyvision!” I told my boss at Bertelsmann, “this XSL-FO will completely revolutionize database publishing!”

We were sorely disappointed over the next five years. In the years before 1998 W3C standards seemed magical; concepts from the standards were implemented relatively quickly, without perfection but with steady progress: browser updates would reflect CSS and HTML advances; even Microsoft was shamed into some level of compliance. But the monopolistic tendencies of those on the standards committees, coupled with the academic approach of some of the standards committees, managed to make it less and less likely that a given standard would find a functional implementation.

Data-centric newbies crash the party And there was that other perspective — the data-centric side of things. For many reasons, XML was at the right place at the right time in terms of data management and information exchange. In fact, the very year that it became a standard, it also became the dominant way that machines (servers) talked to each other around the world. Highly convenient for exchanging info, as firewalls would tend to block anything but text over http, while the semantic markup would allow any sort of specification for data structures, and validation tools would ensure no info was lost. If you are looking for Best web design company in Bangalore check Vivid Designs

In 1998, when you asked a programming candidate “what do you know about XML?” only the document-centric people would know anything. By 2000, everyone doing any serious programming “knew” about the acronym. Trouble was, they typically knew about it only in the much easier-to-use, barely-relevant-to-publishing, sense.

And the standards now had to accommodate two crowds. The work of the W3C XML Schema Working Group, in particular, showed the disconnect. Should a schema be easily human readable? What was the primary purpose of Schema? Goals were not shared by the document- and data-centric sides, and data-centric won out, as they have tended to dominate the standards space around structure ever since that time. RELAX NG came about as an alternative, and if you contrast RELAX NG with W3C Schema, you will see the contrast between the power of a few brilliant individuals aligned in purity of purpose and the impotence of a committee with questionable motives and conflicting goals. Concurrent with a decline in the altruism of committee participants was the huge advance of data-centric XML and the disproportionate representation of that perspective.

XML tooling solves mainly the trivial data-centric challenges Ten years later, we find in the document-centric world that toolsets related to XML in a data sense — parsing, transforming, exchanging info — have made great leaps forward, but we are in many ways still stuck in the 1990s in terms of core authoring and publishing technologies. It is telling that descendants of the three great SGML authoring tools as of 1995 — FrameMaker+SGML, Arbortext Epic, and SoftQuad’s Author/Editor, are, lo and behold, the leading three XML authoring tools in 2009.

There have been some slow-paced advances in document-centric XML standards and tool chains as well, especially the single bright light out there for us, Darwin Information Typing Architecture (DITA) which came out of IBM like XML itself. Yet standards for rendition, XSL-FO and SVG especially, have not advanced along with core proprietary rendition technologies such as InDesign, Flash, or Silverlight, though all of these enjoy nicely copied underpinnings pillaged from the standards. More important, nothing has stepped in to replace the three core authoring tools: the “XML support” of Microsoft Word and Adobe InDesign, for example, do not approach the capabilities of a true structured authoring application. There are a proliferation of XML “editors” but most of the new ones are appropriate for editing a WSDL file or a SOAP message (data-centric forms of XML), not a full-fledged document.

Meanwhile, on the data-centric front, XML has simply permeated every aspect of computing. There are XML data types in database systems, XML features in most programming languages, XML configuration files at the heart of most applications, and XML-based Web Services available in countless flavors. With the advent of JSON at the turn of the 21st century, the torch was passed on to an even more streamlined and “web-convenient” approach for managing semantic content, and while JSON is finding its way into ever-richer content, it is used first and foremost in a data-centric way.

Document-centric XML is simply a deep challenge that will take more time (and probably more of a commercial incentive) to tackle. For the time being, structured authoring managed the XML way is still implemented mainly by very large organizations: such an approach has “trickled down” from organizations the size of IBM to organizations the size of Adobe (which does, in fact, use DITA now), but there are not tool chains yet available that will bring it down much further. The consequences of the failure of the W3C XML Schema Working Group to provide a functional specification supporting document-centric XML can hardly be underestimated.

As long as content is not easily authored in a semantically rich, structured fashion, the vision of the semantic web will remain an illusion. Should document-centric XML get more attention from standards bodies and software vendors, human communications might become far more efficient and effective. Yet the challenges are substantial, the short-term gain not so obvious, it appears that semantic depth will not commonly be available in such a controlled and intentional fashion, but instead will be deduced after the fact through analysis of “unstructured” and pseudo-structured content.

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Web Developer Monthly 💻🚀 — July 2018

Being a web developer is a fantastic career option. You have many job opportunities, you can work around the world, and you get to solve hard problems. One thing that is hard, however, is staying up to date with the constantly evolving ecosystem. You want to be a top performing web developer, coder, programer, software developer, but you don’t have time to select from hundreds of articles, videos and podcasts each day.

This monthly newsletter is going to be focused on keeping up to date with the industry, keeping your skills sharp, without wasting your valuable time. I will be sharing the most important articles, podcasts and videos of the month. Think Tim Ferriss and the Pareto Principle (80/20 rule) meeting the Software Development world. What’s the 20% that will get you 80% of the results? For web design company visit Vivid Designs

Welcome to the first issue. If you want to be notified of the next issue with industry news and tips, subscribe below:

This month as a web developer… 1. HTTPS + Google Google Chrome will officially no longer be nice if you don’t use HTTPS on your website: https://twitter.com/ChromiumDev/status/1021806746283651072

So you better learn what HTTPS is and start using it with something like Let’s Encrypt.

2. Developer Roadmaps More and more developer roadmaps are being created. Here are some good ones that show you what you need to learn for a specific career in 2018: – Front End Developer – Back End Developer – DevOps – React Developer

3. ES2018 + ES2019 Features If you haven’t taken a look already, get ready for ES2018 features, and some of the features that may be coming in ES2019. Dr. Axel Rauschmayer gives you a great writeup here: http://exploringjs.com/es2018-es2019/

4. Modern Architecture Big picture vision is important to get an idea of the current architecture landscape. This article is one of the best on the subject of how some big companies are handling their software architecture: https://engineering.videoblocks.com/web-architecture-101-a3224e126947

5. NPM Security Issue On July 12, 2018, the popular package manager, NPM, had a bit of a security issue… https://blog.npmjs.org/post/175824896885/incident-report-npm-inc-operations-incident-of, and this is one of the ways they are solving this: https://blog.npmjs.org/post/175861857230/two-factor-authentication-protection-for-packages

6. jQuery 💔Github Github no longer uses jQuery on their front end. Why? Well because they can do without it: https://twitter.com/mislav/status/1022058279000842240. Yes, I know the broken heart in the title is a little bit dramatic…

Best Article of the Month My favourite article this month… ok this is not from July but it’s the first issue (give me a break), so I’m picking one from a few months back because it is so good. It is a must read for all developers: https://medium.freecodecamp.org/how-to-think-like-a-programmer-lessons-in-problem-solving-d1d8bf1de7d2

Code Trick of the Month

Remove all node_module folders recursively to clean up your computer: https://coderwall.com/p/guqrca/remove-all-node_module-folders-recursively. For website design company in New delhi visit Vivid Designs

Thank you for reading this far. If you enjoyed this post, please share, comment, and press/hold that 👏 a few times (up to 50 times). . . I will keep doing these if there is enough interest!

Follow me on Twitter and Subscribe to the newsletter above. Format may change as I get more feedback. By the way, my full time job is to teach people to code in the most efficient way possible. You can see my two courses below:

1. The Complete Web Developer in 2018

2. Complete Junior to Senior Web Developer Roadmap

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How to write a good software design doc

As a software engineer, I spend a lot of time reading and writing design documents. After having gone through hundreds of these docs, I’ve seen first hand a strong correlation between good design docs and the ultimate success of the project.

This article is my attempt at describing what makes a design document great.

The article is split into 4 sections:

Why write a design document What to include in a design document How to write it The process around it Why write a design document? A design doc — also known as a technical spec — is a description of how you plan to solve a problem.

There are lots of writings already on why it’s important to write a design doc before diving into coding. So all I’ll say here is:

A design doc is the most useful tool for making sure the right work gets done.

The main goal of a design doc is to make you more effective by forcing you to think through the design and gather feedback from others. People often think the point of a design doc is to to teach others about some system or serve as documentation later on. While those can be beneficial side effects, they are not the goal in and of themselves.

As a general rule of thumb, if you are working on a project that might take 1 engineer-month or more, you should write a design doc. But don’t stop there — a lot of smaller projects could benefit from a mini design doc too.

Great! If you are still reading, you believe in the importance of design docs. However, different engineering teams, and even engineers within the same team, often write design docs very differently. So let’s talk about the content, style, and process of a good design doc.

What to include in a design doc? A design doc describes the solution to a problem. Since the nature of each problem is different, naturally you’d want to structure your design doc differently.

To start, the following is a list of sections that you should at least consider including in your next design doc:

Title and People The title of your design doc, the author(s) (should be the same as the list of people planning to work on this project), the reviewer(s) of the doc (we’ll talk more about that in the Process section below), and the date this document was last updated. If you are looking for website design for your company check Vivid Designs 

Overview A high level summary that every engineer at the company should understand and use to decide if it’s useful for them to read the rest of the doc. It should be 3 paragraphs max.

Context A description of the problem at hand, why this project is necessary, what people need to know to assess this project, and how it fits into the technical strategy, product strategy, or the team’s quarterly goals.

Goals and Non-Goals The Goals section should:

describe the user-driven impact of your project — where your user might be another engineering team or even another technical system specify how to measure success using metrics — bonus points if you can link to a dashboard that tracks those metrics Non-Goals are equally important to describe which problems you won’t be fixing so everyone is on the same page.

Milestones A list of measurable checkpoints, so your PM and your manager’s manager can skim it and know roughly when different parts of the project will be done. I encourage you to break the project down into major user-facing milestones if the project is more than 1 month long.

Use calendar dates so you take into account unrelated delays, vacations, meetings, and so on. It should look something like this:

Start Date: June 7, 2018 Milestone 1 — New system MVP running in dark-mode: June 28, 2018 Milestone 2 – Retire old system: July 4th, 2018 End Date: Add feature X, Y, Z to new system: July 14th, 2018

Add an [Update] subsection here if the ETA of some of these milestone changes, so the stakeholders can easily see the most up-to-date estimates.

Current Solution In addition to describing the current implementation, you should also walk through a high level example flow to illustrate how users interact with this system and/or how data flow through it.

A user story is a great way to frame this. Keep in mind that your system might have different types of users with different use cases.

Proposed Solution Some people call this the Technical Architecture section. Again, try to walk through a user story to concretize this. Feel free to include many sub-sections and diagrams.

Provide a big picture first, then fill in lots of details. Aim for a world where you can write this, then take a vacation on some deserted island, and another engineer on the team can just read it and implement the solution as you described.

Alternative Solutions What else did you consider when coming up with the solution above? What are the pros and cons of the alternatives? Have you considered buying a 3rd-party solution — or using an open source one — that solves this problem as opposed to building your own?

Monitoring and Alerting I like including this section, because people often treat this as an afterthought or skip it all together, and it almost always comes back to bite them later when things break and they have no idea how or why.

Cross-Team Impact How will this increase on call and dev-ops burden? How much money will it cost? Does it cause any latency regression to the system? Does it expose any security vulnerabilities? What are some negative consequences and side effects? How might the support team communicate this to the customers?

Discussion Any open issues that you aren’t sure about, contentious decisions that you’d like readers to weigh in on, suggested future work, and so on.

Detailed Scoping and Timeline This section is mostly going to be read only by the engineers working on this project, their tech leads, and their managers. Hence this section is at the end of the doc.

Essentially, this is the breakdown of how and when you plan on executing each part of the project. There’s a lot that goes into scoping accurately, so you can read this post to learn more about scoping.

I tend to also treat this section of the design doc as an ongoing project task tracker, so I update this whenever my scoping estimate changes. But that’s more of a personal preference.

How to write it Now that we’ve talked about what goes into a good design doc, let’s talk about the style of writing. I promise this is different than your high school English class.

Write as simply as possible Don’t try to write like the academic papers you’ve read. They are written to impress journal reviewers. Your doc is written to describe your solution and get feedback from your teammates. You can achieve clarity by using:

Simple words Short sentences Bulleted lists and/or numbered lists Concrete examples, like “User Alice connects her bank account, then …” Add lots of charts and diagrams Charts can often be useful to compare several potential options, and diagrams are generally easier to parse than text. I’ve had good luck with Google Drawing for creating diagrams. If you are looking for website development in Mumbai for your company visit Vivid Designs

Pro Tip: remember to add a link to the editable version of the diagram under the screenshot, so you can easily update it later when things inevitably change.

Include numbers The scale of the problem often determines the solution. To help reviewers get a sense of the state of the world, include real numbers like # of DB rows, # of user errors, latency — and how these scale with usage (remember your Big-O notations?).

Try to be funny A spec is not an academic paper. Also, people like reading funny things, so this is a good way to keep the reader engaged. Don’t overdo this to the point of taking away from the core idea though.

If you, like me, have trouble being funny, Joel Spolsky (obviously known for his comedic talents…) has this tip:

One of the easiest ways to be funny is to be specific when it’s not called for [… Example:] Instead of saying “special interests,” say “left-handed avacado farmers.” Do the Skeptic Test Before sending your design doc to others to review, take a pass at it pretending to be the reviewer. What questions and doubts might you have about this design? Then address them preemptively.

Do the Vacation Test If you go on a long vacation now with no internet access, can someone on your team read the doc and implement it as you intended?

The main goal of a design doc is not knowledge sharing, but this is a good way to evaluate for clarity so that others can actually give you useful feedback.

Process Ah yes, the dreaded P-word. Design docs help you get feedback before you waste a bunch of time implementing the wrong solution or the solution to the wrong problem. There’s a lot of art to getting good feedback, but that’s for a later article. For now, let’s just talk specifically about how to write the design doc and get feedback for it.

First of all, everyone working on the project should be a part of the design process. It’s okay if the tech lead ends up driving a lot of the decisions, but everyone should be involved in the discussion and buy into the design. So the “you” throughout this article is a really plural “you” that includes all the people on the project.

Secondly, the design process doesn’t mean you staring at the whiteboard theorizing ideas. Feel free to get your hands dirty and prototype potential solutions. This is not the same as starting to write production code for the project before writing a design doc. Don’t do that. But you absolutely should feel free to write some hacky throwaway code to validate an idea. To ensure that you only write exploratory code, make it a rule that none of this prototype code gets merged to master.

After that, as you start to have some idea of how to go about your project, do the following:

Ask an experienced engineer or tech lead on your team to be your reviewer. Ideally this would be someone who’s well respected and/or familiar with the edge cases of the problem. Bribe them with boba if necessary. Go into a conference room with a whiteboard. Describe the problem that you are tackling to this engineer (this is a very important step, don’t skip it!). Then explain the implementation you have in mind, and convince them this is the right thing to build. Doing all of this before you even start writing your design doc lets you get feedback as soon as possible, before you invest more time and get attached to any specific solution. Often, even if the implementation stays the same, your reviewer is able to point out corner cases you need to cover, indicate any potential areas of confusion, and anticipate difficulties you might encounter later on.

Then, after you’ve written a rough draft of your design doc, get the same reviewer to read through it again, and rubber stamp it by adding their name as the reviewer in the Title and People section of the design doc. This creates additional incentive and accountability for the reviewer.

On that note, consider adding specialized reviewers (such as SREs and security engineers) for specific aspects of the design.

Once you and the reviewer(s) sign off, feel free to send the design doc to your team for additional feedback and knowledge sharing. I suggest time-bounding this feedback gathering process to about 1 week to avoid extended delays. Commit to addressing all questions and comments people leave within that week. Leaving comments hanging = bad karma.

Lastly, if there’s a lot of contention between you, your reviewer, and other engineers reading the doc, I strongly recommend consolidating all the points of contention in the Discussion section of your doc. Then, set up a meeting with the different parties to talk about these disagreements in person.

Whenever a discussion thread is more than 5 comments long, moving to an in-person discussion tends to be far more efficient. Keep in mind that you are still responsible for making the final call, even if everyone can’t come to a consensus.

In talking to Shrey Banga recently about this, I learned that Quip has a similar process, except in addition to having an experienced engineer or tech lead on your team as a reviewer, they also suggest having an engineer on a different team review the doc. I haven’t tried this, but I can certainly see this helping get feedback from people with different perspectives and improve the general readability of the doc.

Once you’ve done all the above, time to get going on the implementation! For extra brownie points, treat this design doc as a living document as you implement the design. Update the doc every time you learn something that leads to you making changes to the original solution or update your scoping. You’ll thank me later when you don’t have to explain things over and over again to all your stakeholders.

Finally, let’s get really meta for a second: How do we evaluate the success of a design doc?

My coworker Kent Rakip has a good answer to this: A design doc is successful if the right ROI of work is done. That means a successful design doc might actually lead to an outcome like this:

You spend 5 days writing the design doc, this forces you to think through different parts of the technical architecture You get feedback from reviewers that X is the riskiest part of the proposed architecture You decide to implement X first to de-risk the project 3 days later, you figure out that X is either not possible, or far more difficult than you originally intended You decide to stop working on this project and prioritize other work instead At the beginning of this article, we said the goal of a design doc is to make sure the right work gets done. In the example above, thanks to this design doc, instead of wasting potentially months only to abort this project later, you’ve only spent 8 days. Seems like a pretty successful outcome to me.

Please leave a comment below if you have any questions or feedback! I’d also love to hear about how you do design docs differently in your team.

Giving credit where credit is due, I learned a lot of the above by working alongside some incredible engineers at Plaid (we are hiring! Come design and build some sweet technical systems with us) and Quora.

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BMW X6 Performance & Price

BMW X6 Overview

BMW India has made it official that second-generation X6 would be launched on 23rd July, 2015 in the country. Originally unveiled at 2014 Moscow Motor Show, the 2015 BMW X6 would be the company’s flagship SUV in India. Just like the ongoing model, which was launched in 2009, the new-generation X6 would be sold as Completely Built Unit (CBU). For those asking, BMW India would also launch the high-performance X6M in India later this year.

BMW X6 would be the company’s ‘X’ fourth product in the country as it already offers X1 entry-level SUV, X3 mid-sized SUV and X5 premium SUV. As for the second-generation BMW X6, it is 40 kgs. lighter than the outgoing model. The chassis comprises of high-strength steels, thermoplastics and aluminium, which has helped immensely in the weight reduction. Moreover, the centre console of the SUV is made from Magnesium, which makes it even more ligher in weight. The 2015 X6 would continue the traditional 50:50 weight distribution on the front and rear axles. Apparently, BMW would launch the xDrive40d variant of the X6 in India. Just so you know, BMW X6 would rival the Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class coupe. BMW X6 price range in India is between 94,15,000/-  to 1,82,40,000/- , check for detail pricing of X6 in Carzprice

Check for BMW car dealers in India

BMW X6 Exteriors

The external appearance of this second generation BMW X6 explains that it has retained the same body structure from its predecessor. However, it gets much bolder and aggressive in its design that certainly lures the auto enthusiasts. The front facade is fitted with a slightly pronounced kidney bean shaped grille, which is designed with vertical slats and thick chrome surround. This is complimented by the bold lines on the bonnet. The headlight cluster gets a bit sleek and is housed with LED headlights featuring high beam assistance. The bumpers have been redesigned to give a masculine look to the frontage. It has a nudge guard sort of arrangement featuring air inlets. It also has round shaped fog lamps along with chrome accents that renders it a premium appeal. From the side facet, it looks more like a crossover and a coupe. It gets all the styling aspects like a set of alloy wheels, body colored ORVMs including door handles and black B pillars. The rear end gives you a glimpse of a sedan, thanks to its boot lid. The tail light cluster is powered by LED brake lights and turn indicators that further adds to its elegance. The rear bumper is in body color, but it seems to be assembled with some sort of a ceramic look-alike material that connects both the exhaust pipes. Overall, this second generation X6 looks refreshing and it will certainly lure the automobile enthusiasts.

BMW X6 Interiors

The insides are quite refined as every inch inside the cabin reflects richness and craftsmanship of skilled designers. The manufacturer has used a great amount of leather and superior grade plastic for designing the cabin. It gets a completely redesigned dashboard with fine-wood accents with glossy finish along with a few metallic inserts. The steering wheel has a signature three-spoke design along with the company’s logo embedded on it. This leather wrapped steering wheel is mounted with several illuminated control switches related to audio, calls and cruise control. Right behind this, there is a large instrument cluster that houses analogue gauges along with a color display. The seating arrangement is luxurious that can host at least five occupants. These seats are covered with premium grade leather upholstery that renders an opulent look to the cabin. While the seats have electrical adjustment facility along with lumbar support for added comfort. The company has given a lot of importance to the driver orientation to enhance convenience and driving experience. For this, its floor and the center console in the cockpit are equipped with an array of equipments, which are easy to reach and operate.

As for comfort features, this model series is equipped with several advanced comfort features unlike rest of the SUVs in this company’s portfolio. It has a powerful 4-zone automatic air conditioning system with rear air vents, which takes care of cabin temperature in all weather conditions. It also has rain and light sensors, which automatically switches on the wipers and lights when necessary. This model is integrated with features like electrically operated windows, power adjustable windows, a multi-functional M Sport leather wrapped steering wheel, front center armrest with storage compartment and electric steering column adjustment. Furthermore, it also has power adjustable front seats including memory function, leather upholstery for seats, smokers package, inside and outside rear view mirrors with automatic anti-dazzling function, roller sun blinds for rear side windows 60:40 split foldable rear bench seat. Along with these, the manufacturer has also equipped it with an electric glass sunroof and parking distance control feature for front and rear.

BMW X6 Engine & Transmission

Under the hood sits BMW’s most recent gem — a smooth, free-revving diesel six with not one, not two, but three turbos! The M50d’s 3.0-litre, triple-turbo straight-six produces 381bhp and commercial vehicle-like torque of 75.45kgm. All this is achieved because BMW has reduced the compression ratio of this diesel to just 16:1, really low considering few petrols nowadays come with a 12:1 ratio. The lower compression allows for greater ‘fill’ from the three turbos at maximum boost, and BMW has made sure injection pressure is good enough to supply plenty of diesel. The M50d’s injection pressure is upped to a really high 2,200bar when the engine is running at max speed.

How do the three turbos work together? To begin with, a small variable-geometry turbo comes in at low revs. This allows for fast responses and a reduction in lag as the light turbo is easy to spool up even with a small tap on the throttle. There is a hint of lag as you take off, but the quick eight-speed gearbox ratios help you overcome this in a jiffy. The larger main turbo joins the fray at just 1,500rpm, and takes responsibility for most of the meaty midrange. So, after 2,000rpm, responses are massive and explosive bursts of acceleration are just a flex of your right foot away. The third turbo is small again and chimes in at approximately 2,600rpm, helping give the mid range a boost. The best bit is that the turbos overlap so smoothly, you really need to pay attention to notice where each comes in, especially if you accelerate flat out in one long seamless pull all the way to 5,600rpm.

As a result, the X6 M50d is really quick. This 2.2-tonne SUV does 0-100 in an insane 5.3 seconds, and that’s just the start of it. And the manic pull in the higher gears simply has to be experienced. The motor delivers huge thrust from 2,000rpm to 5,000rpm, and the manner in which it progresses up the powerband is so undiesel-like, you almost forget it is one. Yes, it growls like a diesel in the midrange under load and there’s a hint of clatter too, but there’s also a nice snarl in the top end that sounds just great. At speed, the X6’s most remarkable feature is its near-petrol-like hush.

BMW X6 Driving Dynamics

The 2017 BMW X6 has four driving modes – EcoPro, Comfort, Sport and Sport Plus. Toggle though any of these modes and the powertrain and the chassis dynamics are altered accordingly. The Sport and Sport Plus modes are for those looking to push the car to the limit. Slot the car in one of these, and the steering weighs up nicely, the dampers stiffen up and the engine revs higher as well. Show the 2015 X6 a series of bends and you will be surprised how confidently it takes them on. You don’t really feel the 2-ton weight of the car lugging you around while into a corner.For your everyday drives in town there are the EcoPro and the Comfort modes. In these modes the Adaptive suspension offers a plush ride quality over potholes and undulations. However, due to the low profile tyres and the large wheels, the bigger bumps still seep into the cabin. While the stock setup provides comfort, the settings can be individually adjusted using the Driver Experience Control too.

BMW X6 Safety

The 2017 X6 comes heavily loaded with features. From Head-Up Display, night vision with dynamic light spot, 360 degree camera to parking assist, the X6 has it all. In terms of safety, the X6 gets 6 airbags, ABS, EBD and all other abbreviations you can think of. It also gets Lane departure warning and pedestrian alert. For the passengers at the back there are two separate HD 9.2-inch monitors with separate DVD drives to view different films on. Talking about movies and sound, the 2015 BMW X6 also comes with a 16 speaker Bang and Olufsen high end surround sound system.The centre console gets a 10.25-inch screen below which is the dual zone climate control and the controls for the integrated Bang and Olufsen infotainment system. Aside from the media and navigation, the screen also displays vehicle information and settings too. All the buttons are soft touch and well within reach. And then there is the automatic tailgate operation. If you hands are full after a shopping spree, a quick wave of the foot under the rear bumper opens up the tailgate.

BMW X6 Price

Bmw X6 Ex-Showroom Price in India ranges from 94,15,000/- (X6 xDrive 35i M Sport) to 1,82,40,000/- (X6 M STD). Get best offers for Bmw X6 from Bmw Dealers in India

BMW X6 Verdict

The new BMW X6 is an excellent car, and since it is equipped with “M” package as standard, it is even more attractive. The only real drawback of the vehicle is its size. Most of the urban areas are not big enough to handle a car as big as this one. You are going to have a lot of trouble while trying to park it. But, the size does not matter a lot as all its competing cars are of the same size barring Porsche Macan. X6 definitely looks rich and the performance figures match the sporty looks. Though if you are looking for a proper SUV, which can do a fair amount of off-roading, you should probably go for the Land Rovers but since there are only a few people in India who try out their 1 crore+ vehicles off-road, X6 seems to be the perfect choice.

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Tata Tigor Engine & Performance

Tata Tigor Overview

The Tigor (pronounced Tee-gor) is the compact sedan version of the well-received Tata Tiago hatchback. It’s also the model that will become the mainstay of the carmaker’s compact sedan range; the capable but slow-selling Zest is set to be repositioned for the taxi market while the Indigo eCS, that started the sub-four-metre sedan segment, is headed for discontinuation. However, the Tigor enters the market at a time when the compact sedan segment as a whole isn’t growing as fast as it once did. Tata Motors, though, is confident buyers won’t see the Tigor as just any other compact sedan. In fact, Tata doesn’t even call it one. A ‘Styleback’ is what the marketers at Tata would like you to see the Tigor as.  Tata Tigor price range in India is between 4,62,359/- to 6,95,793/- , check for detail pricing of Swift in Carzprice

Tata Tigor Design

Right from the start, Tata Motors had planned to make a sedan on the Tiago hatch as well. No surprises then that the two cars share a lot, on the surface and under it. Viewed right from the front the Tigor looks just like the Tiago, but subtle tweaks mark this out as the richer package.There is a black surround for the headlamps, which feature a double-barreled layout and projector lamps too. The grille also gets a new hexagonal pattern.The changes start in earnest as you view it from the side. The Tata Tigor is longer than the Tiago by 246mm and part of this is down to the wheelbase having been stretched by a massive 50mm. At 2450mm, the wheelbase is longer than a Maruti Swift Dzire. This increase in wheelbase and the larger rear doors have made the Tigor a proper redesign.The roof arcs down into the stubby, high-set boot. The hexagonal pattern can be seen in the slim, split tail lamps too. There is a smart fused LED strip at the bottom of the unit and the way the chrome strip that runs along the boot lid flows into the lamps is cool too.The stance seems to be of a car on the move as the shoulder line inclines from the high-set boot down into the front headlamps. While 15-inch rims on the petrol variant (up from 14-inchers on the Tiago) look handsome, we feel wider tyres and 16” rims would have given it an even better stance.

Tata Tigor Cabin

Step inside the Tigor and you are reminded that this one is based on the Tiago as the cabin layout and design is shared by both the offerings. Now what’s unique about the Tigor is that it gets a mild colour revision with a tad darker shades on the trims. The signature steering wheel has been carried over, but it gets piano-finished detailing instead of the satin finish. While the design of the cabin feels modern, the quality of plastics isn’t appealing enough especially when you compare it with Hyundai. Here is where it needs substantial improvement.

The Harman-developed infotainment system has been updated for the Tigor as it is now a touchscreen unit that doubles up as the screen for the rear parking camera. It also features emergency assist, service reminder and navigation which is projected on the screen by connecting an Android phone with the help of USB. All of these functions and few more can be accessed with the help of Android apps only thereby leaving no option for iOS users. We asked the company officials on when can we expect to see modern infotainment connectivity options and were told “very soon”. The Nexon perhaps? The most impressive bit about the Tigor’s features has to be its music system, as has been the case with all the newer offerings from Tata Motors.

The longer wheelbase has increased the rear legroom of the Tigor and it does feel more spacious. Instead of hard plastics, it gets a fabric cover for the side support of the rear seats. The only concern is that the hip point of the rear seats has been lowered which might be an issue for the elderly while exiting the cabin. In terms of utility, there are 24 storage spaces to house bottles and other knick-knacks. The Tigor gets a boot space of 419L that is 177L more than the Tiago. The bootlid gets a smart 4-link opening mechanism that has removed the need of hinges, making it a cleaner and more useful layout.

Tata Tigor Engine & Gearbox

Like the Tiago, the Tigor will be offered with a 1.05-litre, three-cylinder diesel engine and a 1.2-litre, three-cylinder petrol engine. Both engines come mated to five-speed gearboxes, albeit with shorter gearing to compensate for the 50kg weight increment over the Tiago.The diesel engine makes 70hp of power and 140Nm of torque, figures which are quite low by segment standards. And the fact is the diesel engine feels adequate, but no more. Performance in town is fair and you’ll be able to keep up with traffic, but when you want to overtake, you’ll miss that mid-range surge we’ve just come to expect from even small turbo-diesels. There is a mild step up in power at 2,000rpm but power delivery remains flat thereafter, forcing you to downshift when you need to get a quick move on. Out on the highway too, you will often be left wanting for power. The diesel engine is also on the noisier side and sounds thrummy when extended. For their part, the gearbox is smooth in operation, though not slick, and the clutch is reasonably light too.

For most urban buyers though, the petrol Tigor would be the one of greater interest. The petrol Tigor uses the same engine as the one on the Tiago but Tata has added a balancer shaft to cut vibrations here. The inclusion of the balancer also required recalibration of the ECU and the net effect is the engine feels far nicer than it does in the Tiago. Vibrations are significantly reduced and fueling seems cleaner too; power delivery is noticeably smoother than the petrol Tiago. Performance in town is decent with reasonable responses to throttle inputs. Fairly smooth gearshifts and the light clutch also help the experience. Still, the 85hp engine does little to excite. The build-up of power is flat throughout the rev range (it revs until 6,500rpm) and it simply lacks zing. And when revved hard, the engine doesn’t sound particularly nice either

Both Tigors offer drive modes with ‘City’ being the default setting and an ‘Eco’ setting to enhance fuel economy. While we are yet to test the efficacy of the system we can tell you that the diesel Tigor feels a bit labored in Eco while the petrol version remains usable in the efficiency mode. Tata has not revealed fuel economy figures for the Tigor as yet

Tata Tigor Ride & Handling

The suspension set-up in the Tigor is identical to the Tiago’s and offers similar ride and handling despite a 40kg increase in kerb weight, stated an official. While driving the Tigor in and around Delhi, we didn’t find it any different from the hatch. While the suspension does a fairly good job at ironing out the bumps and undulations, we did find the ride quality in the petrol variant was a lot more juddery than its diesel counterpart.On the positive side, the Tigor feels planted and stable at higher speeds. The electric power steering is light enough to manoeuvre around narrow lanes and tight parking spots and weighs up sufficiently at high speeds. For information on contact details of Tata car dealers in Hyderabad visit tataprice.in

Tata Tigor Braking & Safety

Tata Tigor specifications include disc brakes at the front and drum brakes at the rear as standard. As for the safety of occupants, the company has incorporated a plethora of premium safety features, like dual front airbags, Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) with Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD) and Corner Stability Control (CSC), speed-dependent auto door locks, follow-me-home lamps, park assist with sensors and camera, and seat belt with pretensioners and load limiters. Sadly, the base grade XE doesn’t get any of the aforementioned features.

Tata Tigor Price

Tata Tigor Ex-Showroom Price in India ranges from 4,62,359/- (Tigor XE Petrol) to 6,95,793/- (Tigor XZ O Diesel). Get best offers for Tata Tigor from Tata Dealers in India

Tata Tigor Bottomline

What’s clear is that the Tigor is not just a Tiago with a boot. It’s got a different vibe and that’s all thanks to the way it looks. It is an attractive car and has a certain visual appeal that the typical compact sedan doesn’t have. In a sense, the Tigor will attract buyers to whom design and style get priority over practicality. That’s not to say the Tigor isn’t practical. Much to the contrary, it’s got a well thought-out cabin, ample interior space and a large and useable boot. At the same time, top-spec Tigor’s also address modern day requirements for connectivity and features.

Where the Tigor could have been better is under the bonnet. Both the petrol and the diesel engine could have done with more power. In fact, given the good ride and handling package, the powertrain is the sole area where the Tigor feels a notch down to the existing compact sedans. But here’s the thing. The Tigor will come in under the Tata Zest, which by extension means it will be priced significantly lower than compact sedans like the Maruti Swift Dzire, Honda Amaze, Hyundai Xcent, Ford Figo Aspire and Volkswagen Ameo. Tata is said to be looking at an aggressive price tag for the Tigor with prices likely to range from Rs 4 lakh (estimated, ex-showroom, Delhi) for the base petrol to Rs 6.5 lakh for the top-spec diesel. And that means the Tigor could sit in a sweet spot in the market with no direct rivals.

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Volvo XC60 Engine & Performance

Volvo XC60 Overview

Volvo XC60 Overview If you’re going to be in the market for a mid-size luxury SUV soon, prepare to be spoilt for choice. The segment has recently seen the addition of the more affordable Jaguar F-Pace, apart from which Lexus’ new NX 300h goes on sale soon, Audi’s ever-popular Q5 is due for replacement in early 2018 and BMW will also be out with its next-gen X3 by May 2018. Our focus here, however, is on the all-new second-generation Volvo XC60 that will go on sale in India on December 12. It’s an SUV that, like all of the newer Volvos, promises to put the emphasis on luxury.  Volvo XC60 price range in India is between  50,68,313/ to  60,15,510/. check for detail pricing of XC60 in Carzprice

Like the larger S90 sedan and XC90 SUV, the XC60 too is based on Volvo’s SPA (Scalable Product Architecture) platform. The visual link to the other Volvos is very clear too. The XC60 has got all the new-age Volvo design trademarks including the Thor’s hammer LED daytime lights and the vertically-slatted chrome grille. But a shrunken XC90 this is not. The rake of the D-pillar, for instance, gives the XC60 a very distinct look and persona. Neat surfacing, sleek 19-inch alloy wheels and LED headlights are some of the other highlights on the car. The second generation XC60 is marginally larger than the model it replaces but it is not an imposing SUV and comes across as of a city-friendly size. For the time being, the XC60 is available with a single engine option and in a single fully-loaded version. Check for XC60 car dealers in India @ VolvoPrice.in

Volvo XC60 Exteriors

It speaks the design language of its elders and though I’m not a big fan of the same-sausage-different-size philosophy, the elegance of Volvo’s new design is something that I would openly welcome on various body styles. Like the 90 branded range of Volvo’s, the XC60 too is built on the Scalable Product Architecture – a modular platform that allows Volvo’s engineers and designers to customize the dimensions of the car to suit various body-styles. The distance between the front axle and the dashboard remains unchanged on all SPA cars though and this works in the XC60’s favour by giving it proportions appropriate for a premium crossover. Compared to its highly successful predecessor, the new XC60 is 44mm longer, 11mm wider and 14mm shorter and the result is a crossover that has an athletic stance and looks very proportionate.

The Volvo XC60 does resemble the XC90 in many ways, but its smaller dimensions are evident even when it’s standing by itself. Another quick way of distinguishing the XC60 from the XC90 is the front face, where the Thor’s Hammer daytime running lights poke their way out to reach the grille. The headlight assembly is studded with adaptive LED headlamps and the rear is typical Volvo with the familiar design of the taillights.

The side profile looks quite interesting too with the 19-inch wheels beefing up the stance. I particularly like the large doors which now extend all the way down to the floor and integrate the side skirting within the exterior door panel. This prevents your trousers from picking up stains during ingress or egress after an off-road session or a wet weather drive. Quite practical and thoughtful.

Volvo XC60 Interiors

Inside, the layout is similar to other Volvos but that’s hardly a bad thing. It’s a fairly ergonomic setup, though, the central screen needs about 15 minutes to get accustomed to, but there’s certainly a good deal of grandeur. The trim quality is on par with the XC90’s, with a big highlight being the single panel driftwood dashboard finish. Certain plastic panels on the centre console and above the glovebox feel a tad industrial, but that’s forgivable. What’s also appreciable is the attention to detail, like the Swedish flag tags on the seats and the embossed one on the dashboard or the doors that extend almost all the the way to the undercarriage, so the side sills stay clean. No grime on your pants!

Nappa leather upholstery makes the cabin feel all the more snooty and they drape seats which have so many abilities that you’d imagine they came with cushioning and a curriculum vitae. They’re shaped to support even the most fast food inspired frames; both front seats are power adjustable with motorised underthigh cushions and memory. They’re heated and ventilated, and to top it off, they get spa quality massagers! Sort of. The driving position is commanding and you do feel like you’re at the helm of an SUV but you aren’t towering above traffic around you.

Purely from the point of view of a commanding driving position, it’s a step down for someone upgrading from a Fortuner or Endeavour. Instead, it replaces intimidation with innovation. The 9-inch central touchscreen is the same unit as the XC90’s but gets revised software. As user interfaces go, this is quite an easy one, almost smartphone like, with only one physical key i.e. the home button. So if you have a kid, or are one at heart, here’s a new favourite toy.

However, using it on the move is no child’s play. With a tablet sized display, it’s hard to know what function is located where without taking your eyes off the road. Luckily, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, like every other feature on this car come as standard. And the USB ports are placed under the driver armrest, so even the rear occupants can connect their phone easily.The 15-speaker Bowers and Wilkins sound system is quite the audiophile tickler too with a special Concert Hall mode taking the surround sound experience to a whole new level.

Volvo XC60 Gearbox

The new XC60 is powered by Volvo’s modular 2.0-litre diesel engine, albeit in the higher of its states of tune. In D5 form as on the XC60, the engine makes a solid 235hp and 480Nm of torque, giving this version a heads-up over rivals in the class. The engines comes mated to an 8-speed automatic transmission that channels power to all four wheels. This motor performs effortlessly and builds speed in a rather athletic manner. All throughout the rev range, there’s always adequate torque on tap and the punch at mid revs especially is very strong. This engine is very smooth and sound levels inside the cabin are really low. Even when the engine is spun faster, it still doesn’t lose its refined nature. The eight-speed gearbox is quick to respond and shifts seamlessly. And as mentioned, there are paddleshifters to change gears manually.

The XC60, for India, comes with four-corner air suspension as standard, and the damping characteristics can be adjusted too. The suspension raises and lowers itself based on the driving modes and the ride firmness too varies noticeably. Typically, like cars with air-suspension, the XC60 tends to float a bit over wavy roads, but bump absorption is very impressive. Stability at speeds is very good and it feels quite agile and eager to change direction. The steering is light but its direct and does weigh up based on the driving mode.We didn’t get a chance to take the XC60 properly off-road but with 223mm of ground clearance (with the suspension at full extension) and all-wheel drive, the Volvo should tackle mild trails without hassle.

Volvo XC60 Driving Dynamics

The eagerness of the engine is complemented by a fairly quick eight-speed transmission sourced from Aisin and a Haldex all-wheel-drive system. We have sampled this setup in the past and know that the XC60 is predominantly front wheel drive until there is loss of traction which transfers power to the rear wheels. I’m pretty sure in our test car the majority of the drive was with the power going to the front wheels only, since the straight roads and grippy tarmac were hardly a challenge for traction.At launch, the Volvo XC60 will also be offered with air suspension on all four corners that enables the car to alter damping and ride height if needed. Our test car let us choose between Eco, Comfort, Off-road and Dynamic modes to alter the nature of the suspension and drivetrain. Surprisingly, the Individual mode to set suspension and drivetrain parameters separately, wasn’t available. That said, the preset settings work just fine. The XC60 is an easy driver when you want it to be and seems like it will deliver equally well when given the beans.

Volvo XC60 Safety Features

If the list of safety features isn’t the juiciest part of the brochure, the car wouldn’t qualify as a Volvo. Appreciably, the carmaker hasn’t shied away from bringing in some of its best safety tech to the India-spec XC60 either. For a mid-level offering, the list is commendable and the most notable features and assistance systems are front, side and curtain airbags, collision mitigation support at the front and rear, emergency steering assist, lane keeping assist and emergency braking assist. The City Safety package, which uses most of these systems in its application, had debuted in India on the previous generation XC60. The new one takes its further by being active at city as well as highway speeds, making the new Volvo XC60 a safer package overall.

Volvo XC60 Price

Volvo Xc60 Ex-Showroom Price in India ranges from 50,68,313/- (XC60 Inscription) to 50,68,313/- (XC60 Inscription). Get best offers for Volvo Xc60 from Volvo Dealers in India

Volvo XC60 Bottomline

The all-new XC60 is a very important car for Volvo India, since the last one accounted for 30 per cent of their sales. This new version is truly a step up in every manner and its package is strong enough to threaten every one of its segment rivals.The kind of equipment it offers is extensive, with several unique elements adding to the sense of exclusivity. However, if you want a sporty SUV, look elsewhere. If you want an off-roader, look elsewhere. But as far as midsize luxury SUVs go, there’s little other reason to ignore Volvo’s new XC. It does almost everything you’d need while not just aping its more established segment stablemates.

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Rolls Royce Ghost Engine & Performance

OVERVIEW ;

The Ghost is a Rolls to take when the parking is tighter and the chauffeur’s got the day off. Smaller, in the same way a tanker is to a supertanker, the Ghost keeps Rolls-Royce’s imperious manner but with slightly more bluff edges and not quite as aggrandising a front grille. coming from a company that still refers to its products as ‘motor cars’ the Ghost retains old-world charm and luxury despite being largely based on a BMw 7-Series’s gubbins.Now in 2017 Series II guise, the Ghost is closer than ever before to its big brother – the venerable Phantom. Every single panel on the front of the car has been changed. There’s new LED headlights, some new interior tech’, and even a satellite-aided gearbox.

EXTERIORS ;

The new Rolls Royce features a fine redesign of the original Ghost. The front LED headlights with beautiful day time running lights is the main eye catching feature. The front is slightly raised and various visual tricks are applied to make it look wider than Series I. This includes the new design of the indicators and larger front air intakes. The redesigned Series II looks closer to the Phantom when talking about the visual presence on the road. Further design elements are a new waft line along the side of the car that leans further forward and creates a stronger dynamic when viewed from the side. Though the rear of the car is unchanged. It also comes with 21 inch five spoke wheels.

INTERIORS ;

The car comes with exquisite interiors, and you can get the leather of your choice in this one. Visit their official website and try to configure a Ghost II and you will surely be spoilt for choice. The buyer will decide the colour of interiors and wood used on the dashboard. Behind each front seat, there are monitors that can be used for entertainment. Steering mounted buttons could be used to control the audio system, and a smart screen on the dashboard controls various mechanism of the car. The driver is aided by a heads-up display system that gives a mirror reflection of the dashboard on the front window. Ventilated and massage seats come as an option, and there is an exclusive analoguenear the steering wheel. Ghost II has been equipped with an infrared camera that can detect any pedestrian up to 300 m; also, the exterior cameras give a 360-degree view. The interiors of any Rolls-Royce car is what other luxury car makers take inspiration from, but no one has been able to it better than the folks in Goodwood.

PERFORMANCE ;

This is where the Ghost Black Badge becomes even more interesting, as Rolls-Royce increased the output of the massive 6.6-liter V-12 by 40 horsepower and 44 pound-feet of torque. As a result, the mill now sends 603 horses and 619 pound-feet of twist to the wheels, making the Black Badge the most powerful Ghost ever created. It’s worth noting that this is the second Bespoke model to receive a power boost after the Wraith St. James Edition, and the most significant engine update in years.Rolls-Royce also meddled with the eight-speed ZF transmission for quicker shifting and 20 percent less heft on the throttle during downshifts. Under braking conditions, the transmission downshifts a few rpm sooner, delivering a more spirited drive. Other upgrades include revised suspension and steering systems, new drive shafts, and enhanced Intuitive Throttle Response. Like any other Ghost, the Black Badge benefits from Rolls-Royce’s already iconic Magic Carpet Ride.Performance figures have yet to be released, but the extra 40 horses and 44 pound-feet should shave a tenth-second off the standard Ghosts 0-to-60 mph sprint. Expect the Black Badge to hit the benchmark in 4.6 seconds, a stunning figure for a vehicle of this size. Top speed likely remained unchanged at 155 mph.

DRIVING DYNAMICS ;

Drive along a lightly rippled road, or one with wavy undulations, and the way the Ghost floats along is both comforting and comfortable. Yet, throw in a sharp-edged ridge, or deeply excavated pothole, and it clobbers over it in an unruly fashion. This probably has much to do with the standard run-flat tyres but, either way, an S-Class on the smaller of its wheel options, or even a 7 Series, can be less jarring.Around corners, the Ghost feels every bit its two-and-a-half tonnes. Comparatively, an S-Class or 7 Series feels nimbler and sharper through turns, while the Ghost is more ponderous and leans acutely if you attempt to press on. The light steering is at least direct and accurate, so be measured with your corner-entry speeds, and it’s an easy car to place.The steering does suffer from a lot of kickback and vibration over rough surfaces; something you might wish for in a sports car but not in a limousine. Yet, despite appearing to have the aerodynamics of a small bungalow, the Ghost does an excellent job of isolating you from wind noise on the motorway, along with tyre noise, too.

SAFETY AND SECURITY ;

A vehicle with this immense a build, and this extraordinary a performance ability, is not to be let loose without the firmest safety. The company seals the high end build of this machine with the best of safety features put together. It is equipped with tight seatbelts, keeping the passengers strapped in always. Also, well cushioned airbags give them ample protection at all times. Furthermore, the body format of this vehicle is a mighty, impact resistant one, meant to absorb collisions to the maximum extent possible. Aids for driving and handling further raise the safety quotient. The night vision feature, along with the heat detection of pedestrians outside, together ensures that everything is kept under the tightest control for the driver, and that mighty performance and elegance are wrapped up with the finest safety qualities possible.

VERDICT ;

This one is for the businessman who is most of the times accompanied by a chauffeur but sometimes likes to take the steering wheel in his hands. One of the most comfortable cars that the world currently has and also one of the most expensive, the car seems to be a little over priced. But, Rolls-Royce has put a ₹ 4.70 crore price on this one because they know their potential customers very well.

 

 

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Honda WRV Price & Transmission

OVERVIEW ;

The Honda WR-V is a newcomer to the hatchback-based crossover segment, taking on the likes of Hyundai i20 Active, Volkswagen Cross Polo and Fiat Avventura. But unlike its competition which includes merely beefed up models with plastic cladding and faux silver trim, the WR-V is a result of Honda India going all-out to create a legitimate crossover based on the Jazz hatchback.We aren’t big fans of hatchback-based crossovers as they often tend to appear and feel like the cars they are based on. Happily, the WR-V bucks this trend, with vastly different styling, some additional new features and tweaked internals as compared to the Jazz. Here’s how the newcomer fares as an urban friendly crossover. Check Ex Showroom Price of WRV

EXTERIORS ;

Look at the WR-V from the front and you’ll be forgiven to think that it’s an all-together new car. Honda has done a fine job of endowing it with a beefier ‘SUV’ look, a raised bonnet line, a thick chrome grille, a contrasting scuff plate and a sculpted bumper. The headlights come with daytime-running LEDs and look attractive. The rear end too is unique to the WR-V with its L-shaped tail lamps, revised bumper and a fairly revised tailgate design that now sees the number-plate slot positioned lower than in the Jazz.

The car’s sides are where you can draw the most visual similarities with the Jazz, with familiar bodyline and glasshouse. There are some unique bits too, with the WR-V getting thick plastic cladding, chrome door handles, roof rails and larger 16-inch alloys wheels that ride on wider 195 mm rubber. Find best offers on WRV

The WR-V is 44mm longer, 40mm wider and 57mm taller than the Jazz; surprisingly its 2,555mm wheelbase is 25mm longer than the Jazz, (Honda says, it is due to revised suspension mounting points). The WR-V will be offered in six colours, including a new ‘Premium Amber’ shade.

INTERIORS ;

There are less significant changes in Honda WR-V in terms of interiors, over the Jazz that it is based on. Interior is themed in black plastic and black fabric with a few dashes of grey and silver in the corners and trims.Seats are well bolstered around the thighs and back and feel much more supportive for long drives this car is aiming to be used for. There is a central armrest for front row passengers with an openable cubby space, which can easily house a phone and sunglasses.

Rear seats however are a surprise. They are flat and fixed and also have integrated headrests, which aren’t helpful for people who are about 6 feet tall. Rear seats are less supportive but cushioning is pretty soft. Leg room perhaps is the ultimate selling point for WR-V. With a standard driving position in the front seat, there’s space at the rear to stretch your legs or even accommodate a camping bag between the knees and front seat base.

The infotainment system is a new upgraded Digipad recently seen in the all new Honda City. The infotainment system operates on new gen Navigation software, Apple Carplay and Android Auto. The touch screen has noticeable lag and it takes patience to get used to it on the move. Honda’s party trick in the WR-V is the installation of a one touch sunroof in the top end trim to add to overall opulence of the otherwise dark cabin.The top end diesel variant gets cruise control to adds to the convenience of long highway expeditions. 363 litres of boot space without the rear seats folded down is sufficient to carry large suitcases and an ice box for the weekend.

PERFORMANCE ;

The Honda WR-V is offered with a choice of two engines – 1.2-litre i-VTEC and 1.5-litre i-DTEC. The petrol engine churns out 90 PS at 6000 RPM along with 110 Nm at 4800 RPM. The engine is offered with a 5-speed manual transmission but this is a new gearbox and not the one on the Jazz and other Honda cars. Honda isn’t providing the CVT gearbox with the WR-V. The petrol engine is very refined and feels eager to rev. The low end is underpowered and feels disappointing but the mid range feels strong and there is a lot of action near the redline. The new gearbox has smooth shifts and the clutch is light too. Expect the petrol engine to give out 12-14 km/l in real life conditions while the ARAI-claimed figure is 17.5 km/l.

The diesel engine is mated to a 6-speed manual transmission. It produces 100 PS at 3600 RPM and 200 Nm at 1750 RPM. The oil-burner is really noisy across the rev band. There is some turbo lag but once you cross it, power delivery is linear right up to 4000 RPM. The engine feels very responsive in the mid range and it actually makes the car fun to drive. Gear shifts are smooth on this one as well and a real life fuel efficiency of 17-20 km/l can be expected, with the ARAI-claimed figure being 25.5 km/l.

DRIVING DYNAMICS ;

The most significant mechanical update in the Honda WR-V is the suspension. The new set-up and the larger tyres raise the ground clearance to 188mm from the Jazz’s 165mm. Ride quality certainly feels more supple than the Jazz, and it absorbs potholes quite well without any thuds. That’s also got to do with the larger-profile tyres. Damping is neither too soft nor too firm, so the car doesn’t feel bouncy or jumpy over undulations.But around the bends, the car does tend to roll a little when you start to push it. However, at normal driving speeds, the Honda WR-V feels safe and confident. For reference, it feels around 30 per cent less stiff than Maruti’s Vitara Brezza and therefore a little less nimble too. The electric steering offers good feedback but feels quite vague. But it’s neither too light nor too heavy and weighs up well at higher speeds.

SAFETY ;

All variants of the Honda WR-V get dual front airbags and ABS with EBD as standard. It also gets a rear camera with multiple viewing angles, but like the City and Jazz, you don’t get rear parking sensors.

VERDICT ;

The WR-V is more of a lifestyle choice than a no-nonsense city runabout. It certainly looks the part, has a versatile cabin with loads of space and a pair of tried and tested engines. That said, it doesn’t come off well as an enthusiast’s choice but that’s passable because it’s not what Honda was looking to make here. The WR-V is all about efficiency and practicality and you get plenty of it. As for the all-important pricing, we will have to wait until March 16 because that’s when Honda India will officially launch the WR-V.

 

 

Auto

Fiat Abarath Punto Engine & Gearbox

OVERVIEW ;

The Abarth Punto is a blessing for us enthusiasts as we held back tight eagerly waiting for the hot hatch since its announcement at the 2014 Auto Expo. Well, killing time for almost two years wasn’t easy but the Scorpion is finally here and we have 145 reasons to shout hurrah! Yes, those magical number of ponies under the hood gave us goosebumps. Fiat is locally manufacturing the Abarth Punto in India to keep the price under Rs. 10 lakhs that was speculated to be a tad higher. We came up with our initial impressions of the performance hatch as soon as it had launched. Now we spend a good while behind the Scorpion badged wheel to examine if it is exactly what we dreamt of all this while?

EXTERIORS ;

In terms of styling, the Abarth Punto does look a lot different from the Punto Evo in terms of styling. It gets the Abarth decals and then all the Fiat badges are replaced by Abarth’s Scorpions. The Abarth Punto also has the 16-inch Abarth alloy wheels that are drool-worthy and the tyres are also 195/55R16 tyres also. The fog lamp surrounds are now red in colour and not the chrome that could be spotted on the Punto Evo. Then there is also the new Abarth red stickering. The Abarth Punto can be easily spotted in parked amongst multiple Puntos. The Abarth Punto will be coming in Pearl White and Hip Hop Black. Then there is also the chrome exhaust tip that we had seen on the Linea T-JET as well.

INTERIORS ;

This “hottest hatch” of India (as stated by the company), can certainly impress customers with its attractive interiors. The manufacturer has chosen a sporty all black color scheme for its insides. Furthermore, there is an ambient lighting given on the dashboard that compliments well with the insides. Its cockpit has a contemporary design featuring metallic finish in few areas that brings a rich appeal. There is a three spoke steering wheel, which has tilt adjustment facility. Also, it is wrapped with a fine quality leather and have a few switches mounted on it. The ‘Abarth’ instrument cluster is one of its highlights and design of its center console also matches with the entire setup. Seating arrangement is quite good and comfortable too owing to its ergonomic design. They are properly cushioned for added comfort. What makes it look different from others is the combination of contrasting red and yellow stitching on the seat covers. Aluminum foot pedals, inside rear view mirror, accessory socket and power operated windows are some of the utilities.

This brand has always taken care about the passenger comfort in all its models, and this one is no exception. One of the main facility that it comes with is the fully automatic climate control unit featuring a foot level air circulating vents for rear. This helps to spread the air evenly in the entire cabin to make a pleasant environment inside. Also, there might be an integrated audio system that lets its occupants to enjoy their favorite music whenever required. The speed sensing volume controls are also provided inside for added convenience. Not to forget that the seats can provide enhanced comfort and support all through the journey. Moreover, the driver’s seat also has height adjustment facility and lumbar support too. One of the main facility inside the cabin is the advanced instrument cluster with a few functions included. Some of these are digital clock, odometer, trip meter, distance to empty indicator, fuel consumption display, and real time mileage indicator as well. In addition to these, stuff like tinted glasses, storage spaces on door trims, cup and bottle holders, assist grips and vanity mirror integrated sunvisors are also present in this hatchback. Furthermore, the aspects such as electric boot release, large glove box compartment, tilt adjustable steering wheel and electrically adjustable outside mirrors assist in improving the comfort levels to a great extent.

PERFORMANCE ;

Now this is definitely the most interesting part of this first impression review that you all are eagerly waiting for and what it gets under the hood.The Abarth Punto is powered by the 1.4 Liter, 4 cylinder Turbo jet engine which puts up a healthy 145 Bhp of peak power at 5500 rpm and an even impressive 210 Nm of torque. That amount of power can be instantly felt as soon as you push the throttle. Now imagine a regular Punto Evo getting a dose of all that extra juice. A 5 speed manual transmission helps it in keeping all that power in right band.

The power change can definitely be felt as soon as you drive the hatchback and I am talking about some real power here (145 Ps means a lot for this small hatchback). Now in order to cope with the behavioral change Fiat has definitely made some mechanical changes to the standard Punto Evo which includes tighting the suspension springs stiffness and lowering the ride height. While to add more stopping power to the hatch Fiat has also installed rear disc brakes as well and thus it gets equipped with disc brakes on all the 4 wheels.

RIDE AND HANDLING ;

The Punto is known for its sharp handling and excellent high speed stability. While the handling got compromised to some extent with the high ground clearance of the Evo, Fiat has lowered the ride height for better handling and here’s how it feels like. The Abarth is more eager to enter corners at high speeds and maintains its line cleanly. Furthermore, the ugly body roll is now much better controlled and this setup urges you to push the car to its limits every time you see a corner. The hydraulic steering might feel a tad heavy at low speeds to those who are used to electric power steerings of recent times but boy, the steering is feedback rich around bends and very confidence inspiring at high speeds.

After driving over sensitive and lifeless electric steerings you feel totally connected to the road with this hydraulic setup. Quick lane changing and shooting the gaps is a delight on the Abarth Punto with such power on tap. The Apollo Alnac rubber provides decent grip when you throw the car around corners but if you do that too often, we recommend you to upgrade the tyre compound considering the strong power and your love for pushing the Punto to its limits. The lower ground clearance doesn’t end up hitting the underbelly on bumps but you have to be careful with those huge speed breakers.

SAFETY AND SECURITY ;

This Italian automaker seems to have packed this stunner with some crucial safety function to guarantee a secure ride to its passengers. One of those features are the dual front airbags with early crash sensors, which takes the safety to the next level. It also has the ABS along with EBD, which is important for this kind of a hatchback. Its engine immobilizer with rolling code is also integrated to this vehicle that helps to prevent any kind of unauthorized access. Not to forget, it has a robust body structure with impact protection beams and crumple zones to reduce the risk of injury. The instrument panel too aids in alerting the driver by giving out necessary updates likes seat belt warning light and programmable speed limit buzzer. A few other such safety features are also provided inside like 3-point seat belts, automatic door locks, high mount stop lamp, front passenger airbag deactivation, central door locking, fire prevention system and height adjustable front seatbelts.

VERDICT ;

The Abarth Punto’s price is Rs 9.95 lakhs (ex-showroom, Delhi) and this buy is more from the heart than mind. It is all about how happy you get when you get behind the wheel and it is certainly a great step taken by Fiat for Indian car market. We can see the hot hatchback market open up and see more cars following up.One of them is Volkswagen with its Polo GTi. The Abarth Punto is a step in the correct direction as Fiat buyers have always wanted more power and this is the hatchback that will be pick for those who need a more powerful hatchback. Fiat has been listening to its customers and this is one of the products that will get delight to Fiat buyers across the country.