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Osinbajo: First Nigeria-assembled electric car, Hyundai Kona, fantastic



Vice President Yemi Osinbajo is obviously excited after not only beholding but test-driving the first Nigerian-assembled electric car, Hyundai Kona.
He praised those behind the ingenious idea, Hyundai Motors Nigeria’s team, a subsidiary of Stallion Group, for the success of the project that had put the country on the enviable global map of electric vehicle assemblers.
Osinbajo, giving a thumbs up for the Nigeria-assembled Hyundai Kona electric car after the test-drive of the vehicle in Abuja, described it as a fantastic machine.
The Vice President made the remarks during his recent tour of made-in-Nigeria products at the opening ceremony of a five-day Nigeria @ 60 Expo being held at the Eagle Square, Abuja.
The event was organised by the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Nigeria @ 60 in collaboration with Business Visa and Training Co Ltd.
Osinbajo, while speaking with the newsmen the test-drive, said with the exciting introduction of Hyundai Kona electric car in Nigeria, he was hopeful of a bright future for the country.
He said, “A very good drive; fantastic; it just shows what is possible.”
He also said, “I am glad to see that this is an assembled-in-Nigeria electric car.
“You can literally charge it anywhere; I think it is a very fantastic innovation; fantastic product, and I can tell because I drove it.”
A statement by the Stallion Motors said the Stallion Group, Nigeria’s exclusive assembler and distributors of Hyundai brand, took up the challenge of doing something unique without being discouraged by the infrastructural issues in the country and decided to roll out Hyundai Kona, the nation’s first ever Electric Vehicle (EV) in conjugation with Hyundai Motors Nigeria, “purposely to embark on the attitudinal change for a clean environment.”
It stated, “Hyundai Motors Nigeria recognised this paradigm shift in the transportation sector by bringing in electric mobility that is a step towards the same goal.”
It stated that the vehicle was assembled at the Stallion Group’s VON assembly plant at Ojo, Lagos.
It also recalled that the car was launched into the Nigerian market late 2020 and “has since attracted kudos from various government functionaries, including the National Assembly.”

The car, according to the auto assembler, is 100 per cent electric with zero carbon emission.
The Kona, it stated, could go up to a range of 482km with an acceleration of 0-100km in 9.7 seconds on a single battery cycle of a capacity of 64 KWH.
The ease of charging remained unmatched and could be plugged in at home or work for 9.35 hours for a full battery, it added.
Since debuted worldwide, Kona electric has been widely lauded for its class-leading driving range, fast-charging capability, safety and convenience features.
The firm highlights the safety features of the car, noting that despite being an EV, Kona comes with some of the safety features that are not even available in cars powered by the traditionally known internal combustion engine.
For instance, it notes that aside from multiple safety airbags, the car comes with Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist (FCA), which uses the car’s front-facing camera and radar to help detect an imminent collision and avoid impact or minimize damage by braking autonomously, made possible by the new Hyundai SmartSense safety technologies.
Kona is also said to have gone through the New Car Assessment Program (NCAP) carried out by the United States’ National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and was awarded the highest safety rating of 5 stars.
“Kona is so smart that it is capable of sensing road markings, using Lane Keeping Assist (LKA), which helps to prevent accidental lane departure and may automatically steer the car if required.

It is said to also come with Driver Attention Warning, which monitors the owner/driver’s driving patterns and even detects drowsy or inattentive driving and alerts the driver with a sound cue and warning message on the instrument panel.
It gave its additional safety technologies as Blind Spot Collision Warning and Rear Cross Traffic Warning.


Photos: Kia dazzles Nigerian fans, unveils Sonet, Seltos compact SUVs



Lovers of compact sport utility vehicles built with sophistication in Nigeria have two new stunning products to celebrate, coming from Kia Motors. They are the all-new Sonet and the high-tech Seltos.

The two models assembled in Nigeria and unveiled in Lagos on Friday to the motoring journalists are expected to substantially raise the market share of Kia in the compact SUV segment, which is fast becoming the toast of many new car buyers globally including Nigeria, especially young trendy people.

Details later…





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Land Rover to expand Defender with eight-seater 130, showstopper models  



Land Rover is preparing to expand the Defender lineup, turning it into a family of vehicles similar to what it did with the Range Rover nameplate.

The expansion will specifically cover a long-wheelbase variant, an eight-seater 130, due next year to a posh, six-figure model in 2025, reports.

According to a report from Autocar, the first variant to arrive will be the 130, an extended-wheelbase version with eight seats and it is due in 2022.

An opulent range-topper is also expected by 2025, and will ride on the MLA platform that will also underpin the next generation Range Rover.

Land Rover already sells multiple versions of the Defender—the stubby but charming two-door 90, the standard four-door 110, and the burly supercharged V8 model.

The 130 should be at least 10 inches longer than the 110, with most of that length added to the rear overhang.

The Defender 130 is expected to only come in higher trim levels and should feature both the six and eight-cylinder engine options.

The US and China will be the stretched Defender’s primary markets, says the report.

The fancier model coming in 2025 will be based on the MLA platform that will underpin the next Range Rover. The MLA platform will support combustion engines, plug-in-hybrid setups, and electric powertrains, and will also form the basis for the next Range Rover Sport, Velar, and Discovery.

This would make a Defender EV possible, but the Range Rover and Velar are expected to have priority for all-electric versions.

The high-end Defender’s interior will be the major distinction, and Autocar says it will feature more vibrant colours and upscale materials.

Although the powertrain landscape will have shifted even further towards EVs by 2025, the luxe-Defender will likely still be powered by the six-cylinder engine.

A plug-in hybrid is also currently sold in Europe, and an evolution of this setup could come to the US as well.

An entry-level Defender 80 had also been rumoured to debut by 2025. It would have been based on the EMA (Electric Modular Architecture) platform, but Autocar reports that this model has been cancelled. That platform will be found in the next Evoque and Discovery Sport, but Land Rover has apparently decided to not move the Defender name down market, as a baby Defender likely wouldn’t have the higher profit margins that should make the 130 and luxury Defender worth the investment.




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Toyota launches 2022 Corolla Cross, offering more luxury, SUV excitement



After months of speculations with unconfirmed leaked images, Toyota on Tuesday September 14 officially unveiled the 2022 edition of Corolla Cross in Japan, the birthplace of the leading brand.

The Corolla Cross is a compact crossover SUV produced as a more practical and larger alternative to the C-HR and positioned between the C-HR and RAV4 within Toyota crossover SUV lineup.

Toyota dropped the news of the launch of the new model on its website on Tuesday, saying the vehicle combines urban luxury with SUV excitement.

According to the automaker, the all-new Corolla Cross combines superb visibility with ample head clearance, ensuring that passengers in every seat can spend every journey―from urban rides to long drives―in comfort.

The Corolla Cross was first unveiled in July 2020. Although most global models retain a similar look, the Japanese-spec Corolla Cross appears to differ from the others, thanks to a redesigned front bumper.

The coming of Toyota Corolla is considered the most popular car in the world, having racked up more than 50 million sales to date, and the number is expected to rapidly grow now that there is a shiny new crossover carrying this moniker.

The latest Corolla Cross comes with front seats providing a high viewpoint expected of an SUV, while slender front pillars and an uncluttered instrument panel result in a cockpit with a full field of view and easily accessible controls; the rear seats are conveniently accessed through large rear side doors and, since they can be reclined, they promise superb comfort and convenience.

Its panorama roof is said to help realize an outstanding sense of spaciousness: its large glass surface provides views of the sky to passengers in every seat, expanding their scope of vision, while the motorized retractable shade allows control over the amount of sunlight entering the vehicle.

Toyota says the vehicle has a commanding and powerful exterior, having been designed to be “urbane and active,” with the dynamism and sophistication of an SUV.

Its commanding, urban proportions are said to be rooted in a contrast between its relaxed upper body – including glass surfaces, and front and rear lights―and its wide, stable bumpers.

It is also said to have some of the best luggage capacity in its class, with 487 litre even when seating five.

Toyota says folding the rear seats further expands the luggage area, providing sufficient space even for carrying road bicycles.

Its highly functional Luggage Active Box has been specially designed and it allows users to store luggage out of sight, while its lid can be shut flat to open up more luggage space.

The luxury and ample space is also experienced inside the vehicle. From the instrument panel to the door trim, the interior is said to exude a sense of continuity contributing to an expansive interior space.

LEDs are used for all cabin illumination, helping to achieve an interior that is luxurious and sophisticated.

Its sporty front seats feature slim backs and provide outstanding support.

It comes with powertrains that deliver a pleasing and intuitive ride. The car is said to respond reliably to accelerator operation, and gains speed in a smooth, pleasing manner.

The hybrid versions deliver class-leading fuel efficiency of 26.2 km/L; their E-Four electric 4WD systems not only contribute to superb fuel efficiency, but also ensure consistent behaviour both when accelerating and driving on any slippery surface.

The vehicle is built with advanced safety package. For instance, Toyota says all grades of the all-new Corolla Cross come equipped as standard with the latest edition of Toyota Safety Sense, providing driving support in all aspects of everyday usage scenarios.

Parking Support Brake and Back Guide Monitor are also fitted as standard to all grades except the G “X,” enabling users to drive with peace of mind even in narrow spaces such as car parks.

Plus Support is said to be available, to control sudden acceleration due to misapplication of the accelerator pedal.

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