Tuesday 23 January 2018

End of diesel as we know it? Taking 'drive' out of drive. Two steps back? Even more SUVs

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Luxury saloon: Porsche Panamera.
Luxury saloon: Porsche Panamera.
Eddie Cunningham

Eddie Cunningham

The following came as something of a shock.

Experts are predicting that diesel engines will account for 9pc, yes NINE per cent of new-car sales in Europe by 2030.

That would be a drop of 41pc (they are around 50pc today).

The predicted plunge is attributed to more car makers turning to more electric cars to get under new global emissions limits.

The claim, by AlixPartners, says there will be a radical overhaul of what powers our cars over the next decade and a half or so.

Its vice chairman Stefano Aversa told Automotive News Europe:"Electrification [of the powertrain] has to come to Europe to meet tougher emission standards and the diesel is going to pay the highest toll."

It may well be that diesel will find it increasingly difficult to meet standards without the cost becoming prohibitive.

But is it going to fall off the cliff in the next 14 years? I really don't think so.

Unless electric technology makes some extraordinary strides in the next decade of so.

Even then, I can't see such a dramatic demise for diesel. What do you think?

* The new Porsche Panamera (pictured) will have two "performance-orientated" plug-in hybrid versions after the new luxury saloon goes on sale later this year.

As you know Porsche unveiled high-performance four-wheel-drive petrol and diesel versions of the second-generation motor last week.

There will be an 'entry level' and also a 'top model' plug-in.

* BMW is hoping to have its first fully autonomous cars by 2021.

It has teamed up with tech firms Intel and Mobileye so it can achieve that deadline. Technologies and systems developed with the two companies will be used.

Here's hoping they don't take any of the 'drive' out of Beemers because some of us will still like to do more than just sit there while the car does the steering.

* Renault will show an upmarket model AWD crossover at the Paris Motor Show, according to recent reports.

* We could see a larger SUV from SEAT, it is reported, just as the company revs up the attention on its new compact crossover the Ateca.

* One step forward, one step back. Mercedes has managed to embed an electronic keycode inside a smartphone's SIM card.

That means you are supposed to have less hassle opening or closing your car.

And despite concerns over hacking, Mercedes say it is rock solid.

There are all sorts of assurances.

But you still have to physically touch the phone to the door handle - so what's the point really?

And it won't work with iPhones.

Two steps back?

Indo Motoring

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