A new car, a new scooter, a new technology and a significant milestone there was a lot that happened in the world of wheels in the last few days. And why this should be of interest to you is that the new technology is about getting better mileage, a car that has become more affordable and a popular scooter that gets a special edition.

A world first from Hyundai

Korean giant Hyundai has developed what according to them is the world’s first Active Shift Control (ASC) transmission technology. According to the company the innovation optimizes transmission efficiency by monitoring gear shifts 500 times per second and then precisely adjusting the transmission rotation speed to for faster shift times. The new technology will premiere in the upcoming Hyundai and Kia hybrids.

ASC applies new control logic software to the Hybrid Control Unit (HCU), which then controls the electric motor to align the rotational speeds of the engine and transmission. This reduces gear shift time by 30%. The technology also delivers smoother gear changes despite quicker shift times. Conventional hybrid vehicles do not have torque converters in order to further improve fuel economy as torque converters lose energy during the process of transmission. Although fuel efficient, such a system also requires longer shift times to ensure smoother gear changes.

ASC technology allows the hybrid’s electric motor to also take control of gear shifts by applying new software logic to the Hybrid Control Unit (HCU) to mitigate issues with slower shift time. The HCU monitors the rotational speed of transmission with a sensor installed inside the electric motor at 500 times per second to quickly synchronize the rotational speed with that of engine. With the synchronization, shift time is reduced by 30% from 500ms to 350ms. This apart from improving acceleration performance and fuel economy also increases durability of the transmission by minimizing friction during gear shift.

The most affordable Skoda

Škoda Auto India unveiled the Rider, a limited edition of its mid-sized sedan the Rapid, at an introductory price of Rs 6.99 lacs (ex-showroom). The car gets distinctive black design elements along with the black facade of the signature grille. That is complemented by black side foils, glossy black décor on the B pillars as well as black trunk lip garnish. On the inside the car gets new dual-tone ebony sand interior, with ivory slate upholstery.

The safety and security equipment on the Rapid Rider is limited to rear parking sensors, anti-glare interior rear view mirror, rear windscreen defogger with timer, height adjustable three-point seatbelts at the front, rough road package, and engine immobilizer with floating code system. The car runs on a 1.6 litre multi-point injection petrol engine is which delivers 105 PS of power and a peak torque output of 153Nm while delivering fuel efficiency of 15.41kmpl.

Suzuki Access Special Edition

Japanese bike maker Suzuki has launched a refreshed version of its bestselling scooter, the Access 125 Special Edition (SE) in the Disc Brake variant. Apart from the “Special Edition” logo with a brand new Metallic Matte Bordeaux colour this Access comes with all black alloy wheels, Beige coloured leatherette seat and round shaped chrome mirrors. It also offers a standard DC socket convenient for charging mobile phones while commuting.

The Access 125 SE is equipped with all aluminum 4 stroke, single cylinder 124cc engine, generating 8.7 PS and 10.2 Nm. The scooter is fitted with one-push Suzuki Easy Start System and comes with Central Locking and Safety Shutter as an inbuilt security system. Available in 4 colours the scooter retails at Rs 61,788 (ex-showroom).

Nexa celebrates 4th anniversary

India’s largest car maker Maruti Suzuki’s premium retail channel NEXA has completed four years of existence. In these 4 years Maruti says it has been able get 1 million customers in 206 towns. The number of outlets currently stands at 363, the first of which came up in Delhi in 2015. The brand also tried to further its reach by the launch of Mobile Terminals in June. The two terminals managed to cover 10 cities in 45 days, with 1000+ total visits. As of now NEXA sells 4 cars from Maruti Suzuki, the S-Cross, Ciaz, Ignis and Baleno.

British car maker Morris Garages has announced a decision to halt the bookings for its first car for India, the Hector.

MG Hector sold out

British car maker Morris Garages has announced a decision to halt the bookings of its first car for India, the Hector. According to the company they have already received more than 21,000 bookings. It plans to cater to the increasing demand by raising the production capacity for the gradually over the next few months. The date of re-opening of bookings will be announced soon. The top tow variants—Smart and Sharp—have registered the highest demand, with over 50% reservations for the petrol variants.


Shams Naqvi is an anchor/producer for the News X motor show Living Cars

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