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G-CLASS SUMMIT - MERCEDES-BENZ G 63 AMG

G-CLASS SUMMIT - MERCEDES-BENZ G 63 AMG19 April 2012

Every new AMG high-performance vehicle offers an outstanding mix of “more power from less fuel” – and the G 63 AMG is no exception. The “strong man” in the AMG model range has been further enhanced with the state-of-the-art powertrain of the new ML 63 AMG. The design has been comprehensively reworked, so that, for the first time in the 33-year history of the G-Class, AMG customers can enjoy a raft of future-oriented systems: spray-controlled petrol direct injection, the ECO start/stop function and generator management. The AMG 5.5-litre V8 biturbo engine develops a maximum output of 544 hp and a torque of 760 newton metres. This enables the new G 63 AMG to accelerate from zero to 62 mph in just 5.4 seconds, with a new top speed of 130 mph (electronically limited).

The new G 63 AMG outperforms the G 55 AMG KOMPRESSOR by 37 hp and 60 newton metres.

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BRITAIN’S CHINESE REVOLUTION BEGINS WITH GREAT WALL

BRITAIN’S CHINESE REVOLUTION BEGINS WITH GREAT WALL18 April 2012

Great Wall Motor Company – one of the most successful car manufacturers in China – this month becomes the first Chinese automobile brand to commence volume vehicle sales in the UK, with the launch of the 2012 Steed pick-up. On sale through a newly-appointed nationwide network of 40 hand-picked Great Wall dealers (for locations, visit www.greatwallmotor.co.uk), the Steed is a robust and highly practical pick-up, equally adept as a workhorse or a weekend getaway vehicle. The new Steed promises to be the most affordable pick-up in the UK – both to buy and to run. Prices start at just £13,998 (CVOTR) for the generously equipped Steed S model, and the vehicle’s newly-developed 2.0-litre, 16-valve turbocharged diesel powerplant delivers class-leading fuel economy (30.1 mpg urban; 37.7mpg extra urban; 34.0 mpg combined). To further keep down ownership costs, the Steed boasts the lowest insurance ratings (from 7A) of any vehicle in the pick-up segment.

The Steed’s chunky appearance – amplified by muscular wheel-arches and high ground clearance – signals its durability as well as its capabilities as a versatile load-lugger, both on- and off-road. Under the galvanised steel skin lies a safe and robust, rust-proofed ladder-frame chassis, strengthened and braced by reinforced middle cross-members, an impact-absorbing rear beam and a reinforced cargo bed. Carrying capacity compares very well with established pick-up rivals, the spacious cargo bay measuring 1,380 mm x 1,460 mm x 480 mm (length, width, depth). The 1,050 kg maximum payload is also very competitive – and towing capability is an impressive 2,000 kg with a ‘braked’ trailer and 750 kg unbraked. Inside the four-door Steed’s generously proportioned double-cab body there is ample head, leg and shoulder room for the driver and up to four passengers. Storage areas are plentiful, including a lockable glove-box, front centre console, front door pockets with cup holders and front seatback map pockets. When the terrain gets more challenging, the driver can engage the Steed’s low-range gearbox, as well as the ‘on demand’ four-wheel-drive system – the latter at speeds of up to 12 mph

The Steed might be able to work hard when required, but it is not a stripped-down, utilitarian device. It is luxuriously appointed, and no similarly priced pick-up on sale in the UK will rival its impressive tally of standard equipment. The entry-level Steed S (£13,998 CVOTR) comes with a host of features typically offered as high-cost options in competitor vehicles, including 16-inch alloy wheels, daytime running lights, remote central locking, a Thatcham-approved Category 1 alarm, electric front and rear windows, an Alpine CD/radio with USB/MP3 and Bluetooth connectivity, steering-wheel-mounted audio controls, air-conditioning, heated fronted seats and a full leather interior. The range-topping Steed SE costs just £2,000 more (£15,998 CVOTR), and adds body-coloured hard-top canopy, body-coloured spoiler, chrome trim to the daytime running lights, chrome side bars, black roof rails, load bay liner, and rear parking sensors.

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THE DACIA 100 DAY COUNTDOWN CONTINUES BEAT THE RUSH: PRE-ORDER A DACIA DUSTER WITH JUST £100 DEPOSIT

THE DACIA 100 DAY COUNTDOWN CONTINUES BEAT THE RUSH: PRE-ORDER A DACIA DUSTER WITH JUST £100 DEPOSIT 16 April 2012

Following news just 25 days ago that Dacia will begin its UK pre-launch campaign on 28th June, with the release of pricing and specifications for its Duster SUV, the brand has confirmed that customers will be able to pre-order their Duster online with as little as £100 deposit, in just 75 days time. If online interest alone is anything to go by, early signs for the brand’s likely success on these shores are more than a little promising and would undoubtedly be the envy of plenty of other car brands. In less than one month since the brand confirmed a sub-£10,000 starting price for the Duster, several thousand savvy potential Dacia owners have signed up to receive regular news updates from www.dacia.co.uk. With interest growing, early signs suggest the new ‘smart choice’ brand is set to take the UK by storm, just as it has in Europe.

The affordable, high-quality, versatile and rugged Dacia Duster will be available to pre-order online in just over two months time, with just £100 deposit. With demand set to be high, wannabe Dacia owners are being urged to secure priority delivery of their chosen Duster by placing a pre-order via credit or debit card on the Dacia website from 28th June 2012. Customers will be invited to ‘build’ their desired Duster via an online configurator before selecting a supplying Dacia Dealer to fulfil their order. Manufacturers’ recommended retail prices will also be guaranteed over the pre-ordering phase, to December 2012. Deliveries will begin from January 2013 onwards.

For the latest information on Dacia’s UK pre-launch activities, interested customers are invited to sign-up now at www.dacia.co.uk where regular news updates will be posted in the coming months. Details of pre-launch activities will also be available on twitter @daciauk, Facebook or by calling 0800 99 11 99.

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THE NEW GENERATION G-CLASS: FOREVER YOUNG

THE NEW GENERATION G-CLASS: FOREVER YOUNG 11 April 2012

Mercedes-Benz has once again significantly upgraded the G-Class, reemphasising its position as the leader among off-road vehicles. The interior is characterised by high-quality appointments finished with exquisite materials. The instrument cluster and centre console have been completely redesigned. The driver's field of vision now encompasses a colour screen, between two new round dials. The car features the sophisticated COMAND Online infotainment system, including a navigation system and internet access as standard. New LED daytime driving lamps and new exterior mirrors bring a few discreet changes to the exterior appearance of the luxury off-roader. The range of safety features can be optionally enhanced with the addition of Blind Spot Assist, the parking aid PARKTRONIC and the adaptive cruise control system DISTRONIC PLUS. New to the range are the G 63 AMG with an eight-cylinder biturbo engine and the ECO start/stop system as standard.

Since it was originally conceived in 1979, as a vehicle to be used primarily in tough off-road terrain, the G-Class has undergone an astounding process of evolution. Over the course of 33 years Mercedes-Benz has refined what was initially a very practical off-road specialist by giving it a high-class interior and road-going qualities on a par with those of the premium saloons emanating from Stuttgart. The G-Class today is considered the top model among luxury-class cross-country vehicles, and has provided the gene pool for the other very successful SUVs built under the Mercedes-Benz brand. The G-Class has been voted off-roader of the year countless times over the past years – as also once again this year.

A comprehensive range of measures ensures that this classic cross-country vehicle remains in a class of its own in the off-road sector. These measures include new engines, a significantly extended range of appointments, a new, even more luxurious interior and a few discreet external modifications that nevertheless manage to preserve the timeless, classic design – virtually unchanged since 1979 - that has made the G-Class a true automotive style icon. Dr Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars: "Our G-Class has been a force to be reckoned with for the last 33 years. In its latest evolutionary stage, it offers state-of-the-art, powerful engines, a further improved range of luxurious appointments and the very latest safety features, as well, of course, as its now legendary off-road capabilities. At the same time the design remains true to its down-to-earth, unmistakable style."

The technical qualities of the G-Class continue to be highly prized. The tremendous torque of its engines makes the luxury off-roader an excellent vehicle for towing, while its three electrically controlled 100-percent differential locks, ladder frame and rigid axle characteristics make it an unrivalled proposition in rough, off-road terrain. The new generation G-Class will be available from Autumn 2012. UK Pricing and specification for the G-Class are still to be confirmed.

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1,000,000TH LAND ROVER DISCOVERY EMBARKS ON FUNDRAISING EXPEDITION FROM BIRMINGHAM TO BEIJING

1,000,000TH LAND ROVER DISCOVERY EMBARKS ON FUNDRAISING EXPEDITION FROM BIRMINGHAM TO BEIJING 29 February 2012

  • The 1,000,000th Land Rover Discovery has been produced at Jaguar Land Rover's Solihull manufacturing plant in the UK West Midlands
  • Land Rover to showcase the Discovery's unique versatility and breadth of capability by embarking on a expedition from its birthplace in Birmingham, UK to one of its fastest growing markets Beijing in China
  • 8.000 miles, 13 countries in 50 days – a team of four Land Rover Experience experts tackle all weather, all terrain in the one millionth Discover
  • Expedition aims to raise £1million for the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) in Land Rover's most ambitious fundraising project ever (www.landrover.com/million)
  • A significant milestone for the UK car industry, with Discovery's global sales up by 16% year on year, with 83% of production being exported overseas
  • Solihull plant workforce increased by 20% rising to 6,000 in last six months to meet growing global market demand for Land Rover products
  • The Journey of Discovery launched with help from a number of renowned experienced explorers who have all used the Land Rover Discovery in their adventures – including Bear Grylls, Sir Ranulph Fiennes, Ray Mears, Monty Halls and Polar explorer Ben Saunders.

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RANGE ROVER EVOQUE CONVERTIBLE CONCEPT TO BE REVEALED AT THE 2012 GENEVA MOTOR SHOW

RANGE ROVER EVOQUE CONVERTIBLE CONCEPT TO BE REVEALED AT THE 2012 GENEVA MOTOR SHOW 24 February 2012

Land Rover will unveil a Range Rover Evoque Convertible Concept at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show. The Evoque Convertible Concept vehicle will explore the potential for the world's first premium convertible SUV. This bold concept builds on the global success of the Evoque and continues Land Rover's tradition for creating and leading new market segments. The concept is being shown to gauge reaction and to assess the potential for what could be another white space product from the world's leading SUV brand.

The concept has been developed by Land Rover Design Director, Gerry McGovern and his team. Commenting on the concept, McGovern said: "The Evoque lends itself beautifully to the idea of a convertible. This study is not a traditional convertible design execution - instead we have worked with the balance of the Evoque's lines to retain its distinctive shape and create something that is unique and, we believe, highly desirable." The soft-top convertible concept is based on the Range Rover Evoque Coupe. It features a fully retractable premium roof system with a Roll Over Protection System [ROPS]. The concept cleverly combines capability and versatility with a drop down tailgate and a comfortable four seat package. The vehicle has been developed with Land Rover DNA at its heart, retaining key characteristics including a command driving position and all-terrain capability.

The Evoque's dramatic rising waist line and distinctive shape has been retained and the new convertible body style has been achieved with minimal changes to weight and torsional rigidity. The hood is housed in a neat tapered finisher with the roof mechanism stowed discretely below the belt-line. Inside, the concept is packed with Evoque's award winning technology including Terrain Response, surround cameras, Park Assist and class leading infotainment featuring an 8-inch dual view touch screen and a sound system from British audio experts, Meridian. The Evoque Convertible Concept features unique 21-inch Titan silver wheels and is finished in a new metallic Causeway Grey paint. The interior is in Lunar and Ivory with leather seats featuring sporty perforated panels and Ivory contrast stitching. The Range Rover Evoque has been on sale for six months and is widely recognised as an international success with strong sales performances in 170 global markets, and achieving excellent customer satisfaction and class-leading residual values. The Evoque has been launched to worldwide media acclaim and to date has been honoured with over 90 international awards. John Edwards, Land Rover Global Brand Director said: "The Evoque Convertible Concept is a new twist to the Evoque story and explores the potential to further extend the nameplate's appeal by giving existing customers more choice, whilst at the same time reaching out to a completely new customer base. We are excited to see the response to this concept as we assess the potential for building on the Evoque's exceptional success so far." The Evoque Convertible Concept will be revealed at Geneva as a design and engineering study. There are no production plans confirmed.

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RANGE ROVER EVOQUE SCOOPS MSN CARS CAR OF THE YEAR

RANGE ROVER EVOQUE SCOOPS MSN CARS CAR OF THE YEAR
22 February 2012

Range Rover Evoque has notched up its 90th global award by being voted Car of the Year 2012 by visitors to the MSN Cars automotive website. More than 30,000 readers of the site were surveyed to find the car that has most captured their imagination during the past 12 months. Range Rover Evoque collected 12 per cent of the votes, in front of the Aston Martin Virage in second place with nine per cent and the McLaren MP4-12C in third with eight per cent.

Tom Evans, managing editor of MSN Cars, said: "With over 30,000 votes, this year's competition generated a great deal of public interest. The competitive MSN Cars' Car of the Year is often won by supercars but this time I'm really pleased to see our prize being won by a car that many people can realistically aspire to own. "The Evoque is a thoroughly worthy winner, and a British one too. The enthusiasm for this global smash hit is palpable. It has gorgeous looks, strong performance both on and off the road, and can still return up to 63 miles-per-gallon. Huge congratulations to everyone at Land Rover." The Range Rover Evoque is built at Jaguar Land Rover's Halewood Operations, which is regarded throughout the industry as a centre of excellence for manufacturing quality. The MSN team visited the plant to handover the Car of the Year Award to the 3000 employees who work there. On receiving the award, Richard Else, Director, Halewood Operations, said: "I am delighted to accept the MSN Cars' Car of the Year Award on behalf of the plant and also the wider company. It is always great to receive external awards for our products – especially when the recognition comes from members of the public. We have been overwhelmed by the extremely positive reaction to the Evoque and are working hard here at Halewood to continue the delivery of an outstanding vehicle to our customers."

Visitors to MSN Cars will be able to learn more about Halewood and the Range Rover Evoque by reading the team's report on their visit to the Merseyside facility. Click here to view. MSN Cars is one of the UK's most popular automotive websites, offering news, information and guides on all aspects of motoring. According to Comscore, the site receives 1.1 million UK unique users per month.

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PRINDIVILLE DESIGN UNVEILS LIMITED EDITION LAND ROVER DEFENDER

PRINDIVILLE DESIGN UNVEILS LIMITED EDITION LAND ROVER DEFENDER 15 February 2012

London-based bespoke coachbuilder, Prindiville Design, has unveiled a new Limited Edition Land Rover Defender, designed to celebrate the debut of the model in their Collection which counts some of today’s most sought-after supercars such as the Ferrari 458 Italia and Lamborghini Aventador. Restricted to only 25 units worldwide, and designed to offer individuality coupled with a superior level of comfort and practicality, the Limited Edition Land Rover is based on the latest Defender 90 Hard Top model, and hand-assembled by a team of highly skilled engineers at Prindiville’s UK manufacturing facility close to Silverstone, in-line with the customer’s bespoke interior and exterior specification. Enhancements to the suspension, braking system, cooling, and engine are undertaken by Defender specialists, Lincolnshire-based Alive Tuning, who has become renowned in their field for their extensive experience, unrivalled quality, and attention to detail.

The Limited Edition offers a choice of four different power upgrades, which gradually increase the output of the 2.4-litre TDi powerplant from 122 to 190 bhp. Coupled with the dual-range six speed transmission, which can be further upgraded to an automatic or tiptronic gearbox, and the additions of a high flow intercooler, silicone hoses, and turbocharger, this translates into a 0 to 60 mph (0 to 100km/h) sprint of just 10 seconds, and a peak torque of 460Nm. The model is specified as standard with 18-inch five-spoke alloy wheels, complete with a high performance braking system thanks to Prindiville’s bespoke six-pot callipers and sport discs. Custom designed and manufactured performance springs also allow greater vehicle speed and stability.

Each of the 25 customers are invited to specify a bespoke paint scheme in either a matt or metallic finish from Prindviille’s very own palette, thereby complementing the beautifully-designed exterior which boasts a number of features exclusive to the latest Limited Edition. These are namely a rear Prindiville signature badge, a titanium high performance sports exhaust, chrome side protection runners, LED front and rear headlamps, ribbed undershield, in addition to front and rear parking sensors and cameras, a world first for the Land Rover Defender. The full leather interior is trimmed with the finest Italian hides, and superior comfort comes courtesy of Cobra sport seats dressed with hand-stitched piping. This is echoed in the matching leather steering wheel, alcantara driver and passenger carpets, and bespoke centre console storage unit, all built and tailored according to the owner’s colour selection. Each of the Limited Edition Defenders by Prindiville equally receives a dashboard-mounted numbered aluminium plaque commemorating the series in the coachbuilder’s prestigious collection. The application of internal sound proofing significantly reduces road and engine noise, allowing occupants to enjoy the unsurpassed driving experience as well as the in-car entertainment and communication system. This comes as standard with a five-inch built-in LCD television interface providing access to wireless Internet, a DVD player, satellite navigation, 360-degree external vision, surround sound from four loudspeakers, as well as a connection to any mobile handset and MP3 device via Bluetooth.

Commenting on the launch of the new Limited Edition Land Rover Defender, Alex Prindiville, Founder and Chief Designer of Prindiville Design, explains: “The Limited Edition Land Rover Defender is a truly unique proposition in that it offers a more refined, quiet, and comfortable environment comparable to that of high-end 4x4s. This is an uncompromised solution for either urban city driving or long-distance journeys. The significant interest which we have enjoyed to date will no doubt pave the way for further Land Rover or Range Rover customisations of a similar nature.” The Limited Edition Land Rover Defender by Prindiville Design is available to order now at a cost of £52,000 or US$81,500 (excluding import taxes and shipping).

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CHIC NEW SUBARU XV ARRIVES IN IRELAND

CHIC NEW SUBARU XV ARRIVES IN IRELAND 12 February 2012

The chic new Subaru XV is now in Subaru Dealer showrooms throughout the country. The safest model in its class (certified 5 star Euro Ncap award) for child occupant safety, the Subaru XV combines city style with urban and offroad ability. Core Subaru technologies – Symmetrical All-Wheel-Drive (Permanent four wheel drive) and the unique Boxer Diesel engine – ensure the XV satisfies the needs of the discerning driver. Whether for business or pleasure, the Subaru XV is well capable whatever the weather.

Despite a ground clearance of 220mm, the best in its class, the Subaru XV offers a low centre of gravity, which aids its “on-road” adhesion giving it an acceleration figure of 0-100km in 9.3 seconds. Priced at €34,995, the level of trim and standard features, which will leave its direct competitors in its wake, suggests the Subaru XV is a serious new comer to this important segment. All models marketed by Subaru Ireland come with the reassurance of a three year or 160,000 kilometres warranty, plus twelve year anti-corrosion cover and three year paintwork warranty. This is in addition to three year’s membership of Subaru Assist – a comprehensive home and roadside repair and recovery package throughout Ireland and Europe administered by Mapfre Asistencia.

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LAND ROVER STEPS IN FOR SNOW PATROL

9 February 2012

With the cold snap continuing, Land Rover vehicles are out in action across the UK helping the British Red Cross and emergency services reach vulnerable people. As well as loaning vehicles, Land Rover has provided specialist winter driving training to volunteers from the Red Cross and London Ambulance Service who have been using Land Rover vehicles to respond to emergencies that would otherwise be difficult to access. The same course is now available to members of the public through Land Rover Experience centres nationwide.

When snow fell last weekend, Red Cross ambulance crews responded to 999 emergency calls in Land Rover Defender ambulances. Teams worked from bases in Redhill in Surrey and Winchester in Hampshire to ensure vital support got to people in need – wherever they were. And 4x4 ambulances were on duty in Derbyshire and Leicester, supporting the East Midlands Ambulance Service. Volunteers from the fire and emergency support service (FESS) in Surrey used a Land Rover support vehicle to tackle difficult snowy conditions to reach a couple who’d been forced to flee their home following a fire. And in Essex, nurses unable to get to work through heavy snow were transported by Red Cross vehicles. Emergency teams in Kent and Surrey used their Land Rovers to take care workers to their clients and make house-calls to check on the welfare of vulnerable older people, ensuring that they received personal care and hot meals. With the wintry weather set to continue, drivers are being warned to take extra care in snow and ice and be prepared for difficult conditions. Land Rover has created a useful video for drivers, which gives winter preparedness and driving advice.

Land Rover Experience is also launching a special winter driving course at its 10 centres across the UK, including Solihull in the West Midlands, Halewood on Merseyside and Gaydon in Warwickshire. The half-day course is delivered by trained instructors to prepare drivers for severe weather, advising on the best techniques to negotiate icy, snowy and wet conditions safely and effectively. There is also some timely advice on how to tackle deep water for when the thaw comes. Topics covered include choosing the correct tyres, vehicle preparation, essential kit to carry and how to use the vehicle's controls and make the most of Land Rover's unique Terrain Response™ system in slippery conditions. Hands-on experience comes in one of the Experience Centre’s vehicles on suitable terrain. For further details visit www.landrover.co.uk and follow the link to the Land Rover Experience.

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PICK UP IN DEMAND SEES ISUZU UK TOP EUROPEAN SALES CHARTS

7 February 2012

Sales of Isuzu pick-up vehicles in the UK rose by 11 per cent last year, putting the UK market firmly at the top of the brand’s European sales chart. A total of 2,431 Isuzu Rodeo pick-ups were sold by the 97-strong UK dealer network, up by 11 per cent compared to 2010 and equivalent to 17 per cent of all Isuzu registrations across the continent. It is the first time that the UK operation, which is managed by distributor I.M. Group, has achieved the number one status in Europe.

Last year’s success is part of an ongoing trend for the renowned pick-up brand, which has seen UK sales more than double over the past three years. Isuzu’s UK sales in 2011 bettered the Japanese brand’s registrations in second-placed Turkey (2,296 units) and France (2,003 units). Isuzu General Manager, William Brown, commented: “The market has responded very positively to the rugged, highly capable Rodeo in recent years, which is testament to the vehicle’s growing reputation as a dependable load-lugger. “This achievement is also a reflection of the professionalism and dedication of our retail network. The hard work of our dealers is fundamental to the continued rise of the Isuzu brand’s reputation, and the impressive year-on-year sales growth of the Rodeo pick-up. Our challenge for 2012 – a year in which an all-new model will be launched to replace the Rodeo – is to further build our sales momentum and maintain our status as Isuzu’s number one market in Europe.”

Rodeo prices start at £13,995 (CVOTR) for the entry-level 136bhp 2.5 Rodeo Single Cab 4x2, and rise to £23,495 (CVOTR) for the top-of-the-range five-seater, 163bhp 3.0 Denver Max LE Auto. Insurance groupings start at 10A for base models and peak at a still-reasonable 13A. Further information on Isuzu’s range of pick-ups and commercial vehicles is available at www.isuzu.co.uk

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RANGE ROVER (3) CELEBRATES ITS 10TH ANNIVERSARY WITH NEW SPECIAL EDITIONS

6 February 2012

The third generation Range Rover enters its 10th anniversary year in 2012, continuing to set benchmarks in luxury, capability and performance. Going beyond the 2012 model year enhancements that were introduced in October 2011, the Range Rover line-up is being developed to include three new Special Editions; The TDV8 Westminster, TDV8 Autobiography and Supercharged Autobiography. The new arrivals focus on further extending the luxury and high specifications that are at the core of the Range Rover brand. In 2012 Land Rover celebrates 10 years of Range Rover in its current guise. The Range Rover (3) was introduced in 2002 to critical acclaim setting new benchmarks in levels of luxury and all-terrain capability. Over the past decade, several facelifts and model year updates have kept the Range Rover at the cutting edge of technology leading up to the latest special editions, which will provide customers with increased options and convenience.

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SUBARU ANNOUNCES PRICES FOR NEW XV CROSSOVER

30 January 2012
Subaru has announced pricing and specification levels for its new All-Wheel Drive crossover vehicle, the XV. Priced from £21,295 for entry level 1.6i S models, the latest addition to the Japanese brand’s stable is set to firmly establish itself as one of the most capable and best-value-for-money compact crossovers currently available. The five-star Euro NCAP-rated Subaru XV – officially certified as the safest vehicle in its class and which scores particularly highly for child occupant safety – combines style and functionality with generous levels of standard-fit equipment, making it more than a match for many of its established compact crossover rivals.

Every XV is equipped with two core Subaru technologies – Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive and a Boxer engine – ensuring that this new vehicle feels both engaging and incredibly safe to drive, in all conditions. Subaru is confident that the XV will thoroughly satisfy the needs of existing customers, while also attracting new consumers to the brand. Three Euro V-compliant Boxer engines are offered with the new XV: 1.6 and 2.0-litre petrol, and 2.0-litre diesel. The 1.6-litre and 2.0-litre petrol engines develop 114ps and 150ps respectively, while the 2.0-litre diesel produces 147ps and 350Nm. The go-anywhere XV is available with a choice of either a five and six-speed manual or a six-speed CVT automatic (petrol only). Reaching 60mph in 9.3 seconds, the 2.0 diesel XV – likely to be the best-selling variant in the UK – offers class-leading fuel economy of 50.4mpg on the combined cycle, while emitting 146g/km of CO2. Subaru’s XV also features the highest ground clearance and lowest centre of gravity in class, making it a highly capable performer both on and off road.

Even entry-level S models feature a standard kit list to make many models from premium compact SUV manufacturers blush. Buyers can expect to find ABS, traction control, Subaru Vehicle Dynamics Control (SVDC), front, side, curtain and knee airbags, 17-inch alloy wheels, daytime LED running lights and automatic air conditioning as standard. SE models add cruise control, rear-view camera, Bluetooth functionality and USB/iPod connectivity. Meanwhile, top-of-the-range SE Lux Premium models also come with a sunroof, Keyless Smart Entry, push-button start, leather seats and satellite navigation. All 2.0-litre models are fitted with roof rails. Petrol-powered XV models benefit from Subaru’s new fuel-saving Auto Start Stop System as standard, boosting fuel savings in congested traffic. It was the aim of Subaru engineers to make the engine cut-out virtually unnoticeable to the driver, and they achieved this with a time lapse between stop and start of approximately 0.2 seconds, one of the fastest currently available. Pricing for the new XV range starts at £21,295 for the 1.6i S models, and rises to £29,995 for the range-topping 2.0D SE Lux Premium. For more information about the XV or the rest of the Subaru line-up, visit www.subaru.co.uk

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NEW LAND ROVER SHOW FOR EASTNOR CASTLE

26 January 2012
The organisers of the Europe’s biggest Land Rover and 4x4 event are launching a brand new show at Land Rover’s ancestral home at Eastnor Castle. The all-new and exciting Eastnor Land Rover Show is opening its gates for the first time on Saturday 25th and Sunday 26th August 2012. Celebrating over 50 years of engineering heritage and set in the beautiful landscape of the Deer Park on the Eastnor Castle estate in Herefordshire, the show is a fantastic event for Land Rover and four wheeleddrive enthusiasts to come together.

Eastnor Land Rover Show organiser Mark Woodward said: “I’m delighted to bring a new Land Rover show to Eastnor Castle. The two have very close links spanning over half a century and there isn’t a more suitable setting for such a show.” Featuring displays of historic vehicles from clubs around the UK and Europe the Eastnor Land Rover Show is the place to cast your eye over some of the finest examples or this iconic British marque, including rare and prototype models. All the big names in the trade will come together to form the Retail Village and Autojumble, so whether you’re searching for that elusive part, some extra tools to complete a restoration project or a new accessory for your favourite 4 x 4, you’re sure to find everything you need. The Live Action Arena, hosted by Land Rover personality Diana Tigwell, will be bursting with entertainment throughout the weekend including Land Rover parades, interactive games, demonstrations and much more to keep the whole family entertained.

If you need some assistance or support on your vehicle rebuild then why not talk to the experts in Restoration Zone. See vehicles in various states of repair and exchange stories on the trials and tribulations of getting the 4 x 4’s back on the road. Features include demonstrations in restoration and maintenance techniques to help you on your way. Land Rover Experience is opening up its off road course in the grounds of Eastnor for you to drive your own vehicle, as part of a surpervised convoy, on the same terrain used by Land Rover itself to fine-tune new products prior to general launch. It’s your turn to be part of that history as the experts show you how to navigate the mysteries of the woodland. This exclusive opportunity is bound to be popular and slots are limited on both the beginner and intermediate convoys so book your session in now to avoid disappointment. Each session lasts two hours and costs just £45. To reserve your place, contact Land Rover Experience by calling 01531 638779 or emailing eastnor@landroverexperience.com

If you can’t bear to tear yourself away from the action then book yourself a pitch for the weekend and bring along your tent or caravan. From as little as £50 you and your family can enjoy the evening entertainment provided complete in the backdrop of the majestic Malvern Hills. Eastnor Land Rover Show is open from 9am until 4.30pm on Saturday 25th and Sunday 26th August 2012. Adult ticket prices start from £10 when purchased in advance with children under 16 allowed in free with paying adults. For more information on Eastnor Land Rover Show visit www.eastnorlandrovershow.com

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WORLD LAUNCH OF TDV6 DIESEL WILDCAT

23 January 2012
2012 Autosport International show sees the worldwide launch of the all new TDv6 Diesel Wildcat, which is manufactured by Plymouth based Qt Services Ltd. This exciting addition to the Wildcat range adds a new dimension to Qt’s lineup of these extreme off road race cars. Taken from the Land Rover Discovery 4, the 3.0 litre twin turbo has raised the bar in terms of performance for vehicles in this field of motorsport.

Qt Services is the first manufacturer to successfully integrate this new powerplant into a race car. Qt’s MD, Dave Marsh says, “This new engine has exceeded our expectations. Delivering 316 HP and 513 ftlbs of torque it produces more than enough power to deal with the toughest off road conditions in the world”. Working closely with their electronics and transmission specialists, the integration of the engine has worked really well and Qt are looking forward to having two of the new Diesel cars racing in the Tuareg Rally, which kicks off in Spain in March.

There has been strong interest from around the world in this new package and Qt are pleased to be able to officially launch the car at the prestigious Autosport show. The TDv6 diesel car was officially launched at the Autosport Show on January 12th and full details of the range of Wildcats can be found at www.qtwildcat.co.uk

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JEEP® SALES SOAR BY OVER 60 PER CENT IN EUROPE IN 2011

18 January 2012
Sales of Jeep® brand vehicles rose 61.8 per cent in Europe (the 27 member states of the European Union, plus the four European Free Trade Association countries) in 2011 versus 2010 – compared to an industry decline of 1.4 per cent – according to numbers released by the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA).

In 2011 in Italy, Jeep sales increased 117.6 per cent versus 2010, with registrations increasing 71.7 per cent in France, 124 per cent in Germany, 21.2 per cent in Spain and 18 per cent in UK. In December, Jeep sales rose 47.8 per cent in Europe versus December 2010, while the industry declined 5.8 per cent. “The increase in Jeep sales in Europe is evidence that Chrysler Group’s integration with the Fiat Group is clearly working,” says Mike Manley, President and CEO, Jeep Brand, Chrysler Group LLC. “Much of the Jeep brand’s success in Europe can be attributed to a strengthened dealer network, as well as a rollout of new Jeep models for the European market – including the incorporation of Fiat’s fuel- and emissions-saving MultiJet II technology on the new 3.0-litre CRD engine that powers the Grand Cherokee.”

In addition to increases in Europe, Jeep brand sales rose 44 per cent in the US in 2011, and 41 per cent globally.

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BIGGEST AND BEST LAND CRUISER GETS BETTER FOR 2012

18 January 2012
UK specifications announced for 2012 Land Cruiser V8
Single model range, fully equipped with new technologies for secure off-road performance, including world first turn assist feature
4.5-litre V8 turbodiesel engine gains diesel particulate filter and meets Euro 5 emissions standards
On sale from 1 March, price £62,285

Following its recent unveiling at the Brussels motor show, the Land Cruiser V8 has been readied for launch in the UK on 1 March. As the ultimate Land Cruiser, the model comes newly equipped with advanced technologies for off-road driving, as well as an impressive array of luxury features. The single version has a £62,285 on-the-road price.

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TOYOTA INTRODUCES THE 2012 LAND CRUISER V8

11 January 2012
Positioned as the ultimate Toyota Land Cruiser, the Land Cruiser V8 has never wanted for much in terms of quality, performance, luxury and unmissable road presence. That formidable combination notwithstanding, the newly unveiled 2012 model goes even further in terms of sharper design inside and out, more creature comforts and advanced handling technologies for exceptional off-road capabilities.

Making its debut this week at the Brussels motor show, the 2012 Land Cruiser V8 will go on sale in the UK in March. More details of the UK range will be announced nearer the time of launch.

KEY POINTS

Even higher quality, comfort, luxury and off-road performance for flagship Land Cruiser V8
New exterior and interior styling
Revised 4.5-litre V8 turbodiesel engine, meeting Euro 5 emissions standards
Advanced technologies for greater off-road driving capability
World-first Turn Assist, reducing vehicle turning radius when negotiating tight bends
Crawl Control with seven speed settings for steep incline climbs and descents
Multi-terrain Select with five modes to suit different off-road conditions
Multi-terrain Monitor providing 360-degree view of vehicle surroundings via four external cameras
Tyre Angle Display
Variable Flow Control power steering
Toyota Touch Pro advanced multimedia and navigation system with voice command control
Bluetooth and rear-view camera
New premium features including heated steering wheel, front seats with cooling and heating functions and memory settings, new-design 20-inch alloy wheels, powered upper tailgate section and bi-xenon headlamps
On sale in the UK from March, with specifications and prices to be announced

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ALL-NEW 2012 RANGE ROVER EVOQUE NAMED 2012 NORTH AMERICAN TRUCK OF THE YEAR

9 January 2012
The Range Rover Evoque has been named the 2012 North American Truck of the Year. The announcement, which was made at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, saw the Evoque triumph over tough competition from the BMW X3 and the Honda CR-V. The judging panel of senior US automotive journalists chose the Evoque as the winner after reviewing it against its competitors in six key categories: value for the dollar, innovation, handling, performance, safety and driver satisfaction. "We are honored that the all-new Range Rover Evoque has been named the 2012 North American Truck of the Year, one of the most celebrated automotive awards in our industry,” said Andy Goss, President, Jaguar Land Rover North America. “This recognition is in keeping with the overwhelmingly positive global response from consumers who are selecting the vehicle for its ideal combination of luxury and capability, within a sustainable package.”

The Range Rover Evoque was reviewed by a coalition of 50 automotive journalists, from the United States and Canada, representing all media platforms. Every year, the jurors of the North American Truck of the Year convene to determine worthy vehicle contenders and limit the eligible vehicles to approximately 10 cars and 10 trucks. Based on a points system, the jurors rate the vehicles and send their ballots to Deloitte & Touche’s office in Detroit where the selection process is narrowed down to the three cars and three trucks with the most points. Once the three finalists are announced, the jurors vote again on the finalists. The North American Truck of the Year honor is the latest global accolade that the Range Rover Evoque has received since its launch in September 2011. It is the first NAToTY title for Land Rover although the brand has been shortlisted three times. Additionally, in North America, the car has been named Motor Trend’s 2012 Sport/Utility of the Year, Autoweek's "Best of Best" Truck, Road & Travel's International Truck of the Year, Decisive Magazine’s Urban Truck of the Year, Automobile Magazine’s 2012 All-Star Award and Best Luxury Compact Vehicle from Automotive Lease Guide (ALG) and Bloomberg News’ Crossover Car of the Year.

In the UK, the Range Rover Evoque has been named Car of the Year by several titles including Auto Express, Top Gear and The Sun. Additionally, the UK's leading consumer publication, Which? recently chose the Evoque as one of the best vehicles to go on sale in 2011. Frank Klaas, Global Head of Communications for Jaguar Land Rover, said: "It is fantastic news that we have been awarded North American Truck of the Year, which is further recognition for the hard work of both the team in the market and also our employees based at our design, engineering and manufacturing sites in the UK. Also today, the European Car of the Year jury has announced that the Range Rover Evoque is one of seven cars shortlisted for this highly prestigious European award. The entire Evoque team has their fingers crossed ahead of the final announcement at the Geneva Motor Show in March."

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FINAL WEEKS FOR LAND ROVER'S 'GO BEYOND' BURSARY 2012 APPLICATIONS

9 January 2012
Calling all expedition enthusiasts! With only weeks to go before the Land Rover 'Go Beyond' Bursary 2012 application draws to a close, now is your chance to apply for funding and the loan of a Land Rover Defender 110 to do a journey of a lifetime. For the fifth consecutive year, the Land Rover ‘Go Beyond’ Bursary, run by the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) is one of Land Rover's six Global Humanitarian & Conservation Partners.

The award is aimed at those who want to take a journey beyond their limits and boundaries, offering challenges for the team and using a Land Rover Defender 110 as an integral part of the expedition. Mark Cameron, Global Brand Extension Director for Land Rover said; "It's brilliant to see such a wide and exciting variety of expedition enthusiasts applying for the 'Go Beyond' Bursary 2012 this year. And for the first time ever, we have also trebled the total amount of Land Rover funding to £30, 000, enabling the winning Bursary team to adventure further afield than ever before." Paul Rose, Vice President of Expeditions & Fieldwork, RGS-IBG added; "The Land Rover 'Go Beyond’ Bursary offers recipients an amazing opportunity to take a journey to promote a wider understanding and enjoyment of people, places and environments. " "With the use of a Land Rover Defender 110, you can really get off the beaten track and make the most of the vehicle’s capabilities in remote terrain and in demanding environments, helping to turn ideas for challenging and inspiring geographical journeys into a reality."

The journey may connect the team with schools, local communities or projects but, whatever its aim, the team will be expected to inspire and engage others, both from the field and on return. A bursary of £15,000 is available and in addition applicants can apply for a discretionary fund of up to £15,000 to support essential expedition-related costs. The application deadline is 3 February 2012 and interviews will take place in March 2012, in London. To apply, please visit; www.rgs.org/GoBeyond Additionally, the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) will also be exhibiting at the Telegraph Adventure Travel Show; Expedition planning zone. The show will provide a collection of extraordinary travel experiences under one roof, at London Olympia on the 28 - 29 January 2012. The Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) is one of six Global Humanitarian & Conservation Partners with Land Rover which forms part of an integrated approach to sustainability and sits within Land Rovers' Our Planet.

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NEW GRAND VITARA SPECIAL EDITION FROM SUZUKI

5 January 2012
Suzuki GB PLC is pleased to announce its latest Special Edition Grand Vitara model, SZ-T, which goes on sale this week. SZ-T is based on the popular five door 1.9DDiS model and offers a unique enhanced specification with just 500 cars available. The SZ-T model is available for £22,315 including metallic paint and has a comprehensive list of standard equipment including new design front grille, new design 18-inch alloy wheels, unique contrasting seat fabric, Silver coloured roof rails and bonnet side vents, built in turn signal lamps for the door mirrors and, for this Special Edition, a tailgate mounted spare wheel. Cruise Control and keyless entry and start are also included.

The Euro 5 emissions 1.9-litre DDiS engine has a power output of 129PS with torque of 300Nm from just 2,000rpm offering strong flexibility when overtaking or driving off road. In combined cycle driving, the DDiS model returns 41.5mpg with emissions of 179g/km. Suzuki launched its first Vitara 24 years ago, creating the world’s first compact SUV and tapping into a new market for vehicles that deliver true off-road performance with responsive, fun-to-drive on-road performance. Since then the stylish and versatile SUV has steadily evolved and kept pace with growing demand for good-looking and versatile 4x4s that are as rewarding on the open road as they are motoring off the beaten track. Grand Vitara remains a true off roader with its switchable low / high ratio Four Wheel Drive system.

SZ-T is available in five metallic colours: Quasar Grey, Silky Silver, Blueish Black Pearl, Phoenix Red Pearl and Nocturne Blue Pearl. For more information on the Suzuki product range visit www.suzuki4.co.uk

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LAND ROVER DEFENDER CONCEPT 100 AT NEW DELHI AUTO EXPO

5 January 2012
Land Rover's Defender Concept 100 and Defender Concept 100 Sport have made their Indian debut at the New Delhi Auto Expo 2012. These concepts investigate the potential design direction for a replacement for the iconic Defender. John Edwards, Land Rover Global Brand Director said: "The Defender has always been at the heart of the Land Rover Brand and single-handedly defines our go-anywhere, can-do sprit. Our ambition is to create an all new Defender for a global market that remains absolutely faithful to its original DNA: tough, versatile, durable and capable. At the same time, it will be developed for the 21st century and adaptable for the needs of future generations.

"Our intention is to introduce the all new Defender in the middle of the decade - there's a lot of work to do to meet these dates and our concepts are just the start of the journey. We are here in India to showcase the Defender Concept 100 and Defender Concept 100 Sport." Capturing the rugged, dependable and adventurous spirit of the original, the Defender Concept 100 and Defender Concept 100 Sport are intended to showcase the potential breath of capability for the future Defender family. Evolved since their unveiling at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September 2011, the concepts now ride on optimised off-road 20-inch alloy wheels shod with Cooper all-terrain tyres. Shown for the first time in Firenze Red paint with a white roof, the Defender Concept 100 re-invents the essential Defender design cues for the 21st century. These include short overhangs for extreme approach and departure angles, vertical panels, an upright windscreen and strong shoulder line for visibility and ease of positioning and, of course, the honest Defender 'face' with its signature round lamps and prominent grille, incorporating a winch.

Also in Firenze Red, the Defender Concept 100 Sport takes all these key design cues and adds to them the spirit of freedom first embodied by the early canvas-roofed Land Rovers with their fold-down windscreens to create a concept bursting with California cool. Core Land Rover attributes of capability and versatility are underpinned in both concepts by a suite of innovative off-road technological aids that reduce the workload on the driver. Foremost of these is the next generation of Land Rover's acclaimed Terrain Response system which will optimise the car for any conditions without driver pre-selection. In addition, a new Terrain-i system creates an intelligent map of the topography in front of the car and displays it as a 3D visualisation. Terrain-i automatically identifies potential hazards and suggests alternative routes. In urban environments the same system is able to identify pedestrians and hazards with great accuracy. A new Wade Aid system utilises sonar sensors mounted in the bumpers and wing mirrors to measure water depth. As with Terrain Response, Wade Aid will optimise the car for water crossings by closing body vents, raising the ride height, selecting a low gear and advising on the safest speed. Sustainability has always been a Land Rover hallmark - more than three-quarters of the almost two million Defenders made are still doing regular duty - and the Defender Concepts extend this commitment with new technologies that will reduce their environmental impact. The first is an intelligent Twin-Solenoid Stop/Start system mated to the latest eight-speed automatic gearbox, both of which have been designed with future hybridisation in mind. Second is the unique Driveline Disconnect system, which sends power to the front-axle only unless conditions demand all-wheel drive. Unlike conventional systems, this physically, rather than electronically, decouples the rear-axle to reduce friction losses but can reengage drive almost instantaneously.

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MITSUBISHI MOTORS IN THE UK LAUNCHES A NEW AND EXCITING SPECIAL EDITION – THE SHOGUN BLACK

3 January 2012
Following the success of the latest (12MY) Mitsubishi Shogun, Mitsubishi Motors in the UK are about to extend the Shogun range with the introduction of the Shogun Black, a new special edition model with enhanced exterior styling. From the outside the new Mitsubishi Shogun Black boasts a dynamic appearance with the introduction of satin black styling kit which includes striking black 20” alloy wheels, roof, spoiler, wing mirrors, grille and headlamp bezels, fog lamp surrounds, door handles and side steps.

Based on the current Mitsubishi 3.2 Di-D LWB Shogun SG4, the newcomer will be available from UK dealerships from 1st January 2012 in the following metallic colours:

Frost White (Solid)
Cool Silver (Metallic)
Diamond Black (Pearlescent)
Orient Red (Metallic)
Granite Brown (Metallic)

The new Euro V compliant Mitsubishi Shogun is the strongest, quietest, safest and smartest Shogun ever built. Now with 197bhp and a massive 441Nm of torque it has increased towing capacity to 3,500kg, best-in-class CO2 emissions which not only means it is kinder to the environment, it also has lower road tax too. Complete with new satellite navigation and Bluetooth systems to help with any on or off road adventure. As always, the Shogun comes packed with an array of standard safety and luxury equipment.

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