The Business Motoring Week February 23, 2018
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Self-parking slippers, courtesy of Nissan's ProPilot technology on the new Nissan Leaf
Self-parking slippers…yes, rub your eyes

Autonomous driving: self-parking slippers

FRANKLY, this made my day today when I saw this story. Slippers that self-park. In a Japanese hotel. It seems completely bonkers. Well, it is. Check out the video here and bring some sunshine to your Friday!

 

Bentley Continental GT First Edition Fascia
Bentley Continental GT First Edition Fascia – will it look like this several decades away?

What does the future of luxury look like in 2050?

That’s an interesting question. In a future of an autonomous drive world, what will we consider automotive luxury? How will craftsmanship sit side-by-side with technology?

That’s something Bentley is keen to explore.

So Bentley’s Design Director Stefan Sielaff is challenging Royal College of Art second-year post-graduate students to develop concepts around ‘the meaning of future British luxury in the year 2050′.

Stefan Sielaff
Stefan Sielaff: ideas

Sielaff himself is an alumnus of the RCA’s Intelligent Mobility programme, commenting:

“We are looking for ideas and concepts that could potentially lead us in new and interesting directions, using the perspective of these digital natives – from all over the world – to see things differently.”

Dr Chris Thorpe, who is the RCA’s senior tutor in Intelligent Mobility, added: “In an increasingly virtual and digital world, how can the elements of physical materiality and our sensory response be orchestrated and composed to meet our deepest human needs and desires? These are the areas we are exploring with Bentley.”

New Bentley Continental GT
New Bentley Continental GT: fabulous now – but how will it be defined 30 years from now?

The student with the winning design will receive an internship in the Bentley Design department in Crewe. I’m looking forward to what they come up with.

 

DriveNow BMW_i3_London_Bar_0BMW and Daimler – could they tie up?

Hard to believe giants of the automotive stage holding hands – it’s a bit like Manchester United and Manchester City agreeing to merge; Jose and Pep having a candlelit dinner. But this, in a smaller way, is what we believe BMW and Daimler are proposing.

Both have car-sharing programmes: BMW’s is called Drive Now; Mercedes has car2go. But there’s every chance the two giants of the German automotive industry will merge their car sharing offerings. Why? Who is the enemy? Read more here.

 

Ford Mustang Bullitt launched at Detroit Show 2018The ‘Bullitt’ Mustang is back

If you were to ask me about one of the iconic cars from my childhood it would have to be Steve McQueen’s Ford Mustang in the brilliant movie ‘Bullitt’. As cool as the ice cool McQueen, it leaped, squealed and roared around the streets of San Francisco.

And at the Detroit show in Michigan, US, Ford unveiled is latest update of the modern Ford Mustang with a hugely crowd-pleasing Bullitt version. In green like the original. Fantastic. Ford, please bring it over here. For more of what’s been happening Stateside, read our review of the Detroit Show.

And for a bit of fun, check out this video of Steve McQueen’s granddaughter who features in the new Ford Mustang Bullitt promo:

 

Drive around in the dark

It appears there’s quite a thing about ‘black’ being a designation. Audi has done it already with cars such as the Audi A4 Black Edition. Jaguar now also has Black Edition models.

But Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles has just gone dark: Dark Label.

Volkswagen Amarok Dark Label
Volkswagen Amarok Dark Label: slip into the night…

It’s ultra successful Amarok pick-up can be ordered in this new ultra luxury designation. Read Stand out from the crowd by choosing Dark Label to find out more.

what3words

And not just the words coming from the mouths of journos on press day when the publisher asks ‘for just one more thing’…

MBUX dashboard on new A classwhat3words is a global addressing system that has divided the world into 3m x 3m squares, each with a unique address made of 3 dictionary words. It’s a fantastically clever idea. It means you can navigate with absolute precision to your destination.

And it’s all part of the new Mercdes-Benz User Experience (MBUX) which will feature on the new A-Class (pictured). I can’t wait. Why, I might even get to a meeting on time!

See how clever what3words is in this video:

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