The UK Sets Rules Defining, Legalizing Self-Driving Cars

Motortrend News Feed - Tue, 05/11/2021 - 17:49

With the rise of advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) becoming more capable when handling lane keeping (self steering) and the braking and acceleration of vehicles so equipped, the UK government is about to set rules to narrowly legalize self-driving vehicles on roads. And it believes such technology would help ease urban congestion and improve road safety by reducing human error.

But we’re not talking self-driving vehicles like those you’re probably thinking of. Instead, the UK Department for Transport says“Automated Lane Keeping System (ALKS) could legally be defined as self-driving, as long as they receive GB type approval and that there is no evidence to challenge the vehicle’s ability to self-drive.” Under new rules, the system should work in a single lane and be able to control the vehicle’s position under 37 mph (60 km/h). When self-driving mode is active, the driver is not required to monitor the road and goes hands-free from steering. And when the system deems human input is necessary, the driver has to respond within 10 seconds (no sleeping). If not, the system should turn on hazard lights and slow the vehicle down to a stop.

That definition of self-driving is pretty much in line with SAE Level 3 automation, which amounts to conditional automation, where “driver is a necessity, but is not required to monitor the environment. The driver must be ready to take control of the vehicle at all times with notice.” (Today’s best driver assists qualify as Level 2, including Tesla’s Autopilot, and require constant driver monitoring.) The 37-mph speed limit seems to be a necessary first step safeguard before the technology becomes more capable and proves itself at higher speeds. Some may argue (SAE included) that such a system is not really self-driving like a robotaxi, but the road to true level 5, fully autonomous capability is long and still years away, so some form of regulation is necessary to help pave the way and also help prevent misleading marketing.

There is already one vehicle in Japan that fits the UK’s definition of self-driving. The Honda Legend (Acura RLX), is capable of self-driving under 31 mph (50 km/h) on motorways. In 2017, Audi unveiled an A8 with similar technology, but due to regulatory hurdles, the system never reached widespread adoption. Now, it looks like Audi can probably bring the system back to the UK market soon. Eventually, it seems, the UK’s regulation of self-driving (or, more accurately, semi-autonomous) vehicles will expand to allow for Level 4 and—someday—Level 5 capability.


The post The UK Sets Rules Defining, Legalizing Self-Driving Cars appeared first on MotorTrend.

Categories: Property

Central London office take-up totalled 1.28m sq ft in Q1 2021

Property Week News Feed - Tue, 05/11/2021 - 17:29
Central London office take-up totalled 1.28m sq ft in the first quarter of 2021, a 117% increase on the previous quarter.
Categories: Property

Queen’s Speech outlines plans for property industry

Property Week News Feed - Tue, 05/11/2021 - 17:06
The government has outlined plans to introduce sweeping changes to the planning system, the leasehold system and building safety over the course of the next parliament in the Queen’s Speech.
Categories: Property

Subaru Solterra rises as brand's first electric SUV

The Car Connection News Feed - Tue, 05/11/2021 - 16:55
The sun and the earth meet in the naming of Subaru's much-anticipated first electric vehicle, the Subaru Solterra, the brand announced Tuesday. The Latin words converge on an all-wheel-drive SUV powered by batteries and furthering Subaru's earth-friendly image. Subaru revealed little else about the Solterra except that it will arrive in 2022 and...
Categories: Property

Hyundai recalls Elantra, Ford F-150 Lightning and Subaru Solterra EVs teased: What's New @ The Car Connection

The Car Connection News Feed - Tue, 05/11/2021 - 16:49
Hyundai issues 3 recalls for Elantra, Kona, Santa Fe Sport Three separate recalls highlight increased fire risk in several Hyundai compact sedans and crossovers. Subaru Solterra rises as brand's first electric SUV Subaru's first fully electric vehicle will be a crossover SUV called the Solterra, which is due in 2022. From Motor Authority: Ford...
Categories: Property

Research from estate agents Benham and Reeves shows top UK developers could receive £25m tax bill

Property Week News Feed - Tue, 05/11/2021 - 16:48
Research from estate agents Benham and Reeves has shown top UK developers could receive £25m tax bill.
Categories: Property

Subaru’s New 2023 Electric SUV Gets a Name: Solterra

Motortrend News Feed - Tue, 05/11/2021 - 16:43

Subaru’s long-anticipated electric SUV, which is being co-developed with Toyota, is almost here. And now we have a name to put to this new Subaru EV: Solterra.

According to Subaru, the name is an amalgamation of the Latin words for “sun” and “Earth,” so you can bet that while the Solterra’s powertrain is a change of pace for Subaru, its wholesome, crunchy-granola, dog-loving vibe will surely be played up to commensurate levels.

Subaru has revealed the 2023 Solterra’s tailgate badge as well as a shadowy image of the entire SUV, unhelpfully backlit by Sol while it travels across some terra firma. From what we can make out, the Solterra appears to have a long wheelbase, with its wheels pushed to each corner, and a generally sleeker-than-Subie-typical shape. Aerodynamics surely played a role in the smooth profile—minimizing drag helps maximize driving range per charge. And there is a clear (and unsurprising) resemblance between the Solterra’s shape and that of a cutaway illustration of the shared Toyota-Subaru electric car platform (below) shown way back in 2019.

About that platform … Subaru is calling it e-SUBARU, but you may also recognize it as the same bones going beneath the new Toyota bZ4X EV SUV. Whatever you call it, the electric chassis is not shared with any of Subaru’s gas-fed models, and the dedicated setup will—of course—deliver “Subaru’s expertise in all-wheel drive technology” while incorporating “Toyota’s vehicle electrification technology.”

While the Solterra shares its platform with the bZ4X, we’ll have to see more of the styling and specifications to determine how close these platform-mates are. We expect the relationship to be much like the Subaru BRZ and Toyota GR 86—closely related but with distinct personalities. The answer will come next year or close to it, ahead of the Subaru Solterra’s 2022 on-sale date.

The post Subaru’s New 2023 Electric SUV Gets a Name: Solterra appeared first on MotorTrend.

Categories: Property

The Power of Proptech 2021: get your views heard

Property Week News Feed - Tue, 05/11/2021 - 15:23
As much of the property sector’s workforce continues to sit at home trying to virtually recreate their work environment, the importance of technology and proptech has been brought into sharp focus.
Categories: Property

Bury FC stadium on the market

Property Week News Feed - Tue, 05/11/2021 - 15:21
Bury FC’s Gigg Lane stadium has been put on the market.
Categories: Property

Clive Emson raises more than £20m at May auction

Property Week News Feed - Tue, 05/11/2021 - 15:19
Clive Emson raised more than £20.1m at its May auction, selling 80% of the 128-lot catalogue.
Categories: Property

Mayfair Capital’s property fund acquires £15.9m logistics hub

Property Week News Feed - Tue, 05/11/2021 - 15:17
Mayfair Capital’s Property Income Trust for Charities has acquired a 104,000 sq ft warehouse at Cabot Park, Rockingham Gate, Avonmouth, for £15.9m, reflecting a net initial yield of 4.12%.
Categories: Property

High street rent collections up by 21.8% on last quarter

Property Week News Feed - Tue, 05/11/2021 - 15:07
Rents received by high street landlords have increased by 21.8% since Q4 2020, with 67.7% of rents being received by landlords and property managers.
Categories: Property

Skechers signs for first store in Paris

Property Week News Feed - Tue, 05/11/2021 - 15:00
Harper Dennis Hobbs (HDH) has announced a new deal to expand Skechers’ European footprint with an additional store in France.
Categories: Property

HDH assists Skechers’ European expansion

Property Week News Feed - Tue, 05/11/2021 - 15:00
Harper Dennis Hobbs (HDH) has announced a new deal to expand Skechers’ European footprint with an additional store in France.
Categories: Property

Knight Frank appointed agents for The Auria

Property Week News Feed - Tue, 05/11/2021 - 13:46
Catalyst has appointed Knight Frank as sole agents for The Auria, the second phase of its Portobello Square regeneration.
Categories: Property

Apache Capital launches purpose-built rental housing platform

Property Week News Feed - Tue, 05/11/2021 - 13:39
Apache Capital has launched a single-family rental housing platform called Present Made.
Categories: Property

2021 Ferrari 812 GTS First Drive: Frightening, Just Like You Want It to Be

Motortrend News Feed - Tue, 05/11/2021 - 13:30

It’s almost easy to come to the conclusion serious skill is no longer a prerequisite to driving a new Ferrari, but this review of the 2021 Ferrari 812 GTS quickly disavows you of that notion. Ferrari’s V-12-powered drop-top GT is a frightening car to the uninitiated—but once you learn its mysterious ways, it becomes the best driving partner a well-heeled car enthusiast could ask for. It is not difficult to drive, but it is difficult to drive well—and isn’t that what we want a Ferrari to be?

Indulge me for a moment as I step back in time to my First Drive of an 812, two years ago when the hardtop 812 Superfast won a spot on the 2019 All-Stars list of our sister publication, Automobile. We were granted the privilege of driving the 812 on the track, and my fellow speed demons couldn’t stop talking about what an incredible experience the car was.

I kept my mouth shut on that day, because the car scared the daylights out of me. If ever a vehicle had a homicidal streak, it was the Ferrari 812. Pushing it as hard as I dared, the Ferrari felt so twitchy, so alive, I was afraid it would spin off into the dirt at the drop of the proverbial helmet. I imagined I could hear it whispering to me in some decidedly non-Italian accent: Drive faster, Meester Gold, but eeef you make one wrong move, I … will … keeeell you. “But if you kill me,” I said to the car (possibly out loud; hard to tell over the screaming V-12), “we’ll both die.” To which the car replied: Yessssss, Meester Gold, I know.

Two years later, in the pilot’s seat of the retractable-hardtop 812 GTS, I had discovered a new level of motoring bliss. Blasting through the corners at hypersonic speeds, the insanely powerful V-12 singing its 8,900-rpm song, you don’t have to be a great driver to channel Ferrari Formula 1 ace Charles Leclerc. You learn to position the 812 so precisely, you feel as if you are driving by telepathy. But still, when a couple of other 812 newbies on our staff take the GTS for a quick blast, they unilaterally declare it the most terrifying car they have ever driven.

So yes, there is some skill involved, and for those who shake their heads and say, “Well, of course you need skill to drive a Ferrari,” let us introduce you to Maranello’s F8 Tributo. Here is a supercar in every sense of the word, and yet it feels like the nicest, chummiest guy you’ll ever meet. Anyone can go fast in it, and even if you’re not brave enough to push it as hard as it will go—smart cookie, you—it’ll make you feel like a driving superstar. It’s only when you crank the F8 up to 9/10ths that it becomes a challenge, but the mid-engine car’s saving grace is that it’s huge fun at half that speed. Get sloppy if you want; the F8 is just as happy with carne asada as it is with caviar.

Not so the 812, which feels twitchy, nervous like a dog poised to bite, a feeling exacerbated by the car’s four-wheel-steering system. Granted, every system in the 2021 Ferrari 812 GTS is hyper responsive—accelerator, brakes, and steering, in ascending order—but the wildly rapid direction changes are what make the 812 such a scary proposition.

Truth is, you’re quite safe in the 2021 Ferrari 812 GTS, its electronic nannies always ready for a two-seconds-to-midnight save. (I was reminded of this when I jumped on the throttle with cold tires, a dumbass move the car kindly reeled in before it evolved into a very embarrassing phone call to Ferrari.)

But if you want to enjoy the 812, good technique is essential. No, perhaps that’s not quite accurate, because most cars (the F8 included) reward good technique.

What sets the 812 apart is that it punishes bad technique.

As I settled into the 2021 Ferrari 812 GTS and prepared to have my knuckles whitened, I recalled something a race car driver told me some years ago: Before you head into a corner, concentrate on settling all your weight onto your butt. When driving an intimidating car—and make no mistake, 789 horsepower and a $534,835 as-tested price is the pinnacle of intimidation—it’s natural to tense up, grip the steering wheel and use it as a grab handle. But when you allow your arms to bear weight, they lose their ability to listen and talk. In the new Ferrari 812 GTS, you need that communication.

So, as you crank up the speed, remind yourself: Weight in the seat and off your arms and feet. Hold the wheel with a light pinch between the thumb and first two fingers, like an elegant Edwardian Englishman holds his teacup. Keep your movements light and small. Don’t command the 812—caress it. Finesse it.

Do that, and you’ll feel like you are driving the car by telepathy. The 2021 Ferrari 812 GTS no longer fights you, nor you it; instead, you fight together. Personally, I felt like the only limit to the speed I could drive with comfortably and confidently was my ability to pay for the ticket.

Now, all that said, should we expect a car like the Ferrari 812 GTS to be tame or even domesticated? The 812 GTS is a car of superlatives—first front-engine Ferrari convertible in 50 years, the most powerful convertible sold today—but it is also likely a car of lasts: Its V-12 engine is an endangered species, deriving that impossibly huge 789-hp figure from its 6.5-liter V-12 with no supercharging, turbocharging, or electric charging.

Part of that brag-worthy number comes from typical Ferrari sky-high revs. Horsepower peaks at 8,500 rpm and the engine redlines at 8,900, noteworthy figures when you consider the rotating mass of a big V-12 has got to weigh something significant. Torque is an easier-to-wrap-your-head-around 530 lb-ft.

And yet, honestly, those numbers almost have no meaning. You don’t need to floor the 812 GTS’ accelerator; you don’t even need to use the seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission’s launch mode. No matter what you do, this Ferrari is quick, and it rewards in sound as much as in speed. The 812 GTS starts with a cacophony that would put the fear of God into God, and it accelerates with a wail that is everything we dreamed about when we hung posters of Ferraris on our walls.

Everything about this car adds to the experience, or at least manages not to detract. The ride is hard but livable, and noise levels at cruising speeds are quite reasonable. The retractable lid stows and deploys quickly and smoothly, and the car looks good with it up or down. Then again, with its $32,904 paint job and $40,330 worth of optional carbon-fiber trim, it had better look good.

The 2021 Ferrari 812 GTS, in other words, is everything you want it to be. Including difficult, even if it turns out it really isn’t.

2021 Ferrari 812 GTS Pros:
  • As fast and responsive as you dream a Ferrari should be
  • Soul-achingly beautiful (especially with a $30K paint job)
  • Smooth, fast convertible-top operation
2021 Ferrari 812 GTS Cons:
  • Intimidating as all get-out
  • Ridiculous option prices ($4,219 for Apple CarPlay!)
  • Complicated controls
SPECIFICATIONS 2021 Ferrari 812 GTS BASE PRICE $404,494 LAYOUT Front-engine, RWD, 2-pass, 2-door convertible ENGINE 6.5L/789-hp/530 lb-ft DOHC 48-valve V-12 TRANSMISSION 7-speed twin-clutch auto CURB WEIGHT 3,900 lb (est) WHEELBASE 107.1 in L x W x H 184.8 x 77.6 x 50.2 in 0-60 MPH 2.8 sec (est) EPA FUEL ECON 12/15/13 mpg ENERGY CONSUMPTION, CITY/HWY 281/225 kW-hrs/100 miles CO2 EMISSIONS, COMB 1.47 lb/mile ON SALE Now

The post 2021 Ferrari 812 GTS First Drive: Frightening, Just Like You Want It to Be appeared first on MotorTrend.

Categories: Property

First phase of Mercato at Elephant Park to open this month

Property Week News Feed - Tue, 05/11/2021 - 12:05
The first phase of Lendlease’s 17,500 sq ft Mercato Metropolitano at Elephant Park in Southwark, south London, is set to open later this month.
Categories: Property

What’s the Best 2021 Mazda CX-5 Trim? Here’s Our Guide

Motortrend News Feed - Tue, 05/11/2021 - 12:00

The Mazda CX-5 isn’t the newest, highest-tech, most fuel efficient, or most practical compact SUV—but it’s definitely the sportiest. Its shortcomings are few, and it remains one of the top-rated vehicles in our compact SUV rankings. For 2021 the CX-5 has been updated with a larger infotainment screen, a new trim level, and a very slight price increase. What are the differences between the 2021 CX-5 trim levels, and which is best? Let’s get into it.

2021 Mazda CX-5 Sport Pros and Cons

Sport is a fitting name for the base trim, as it enjoys the same sporty chassis setup as its higher-end counterparts. It’s powered by a 2.5-liter I-4 that turns the front wheels, with all-wheel drive optionally available. This engine doesn’t make the CX-5 particularly efficient, scoring 25/31 mpg city/highway with FWD and 24/30 mpg with AWD.

Outside, it rolls on 17-inch alloy wheels and has LED headlights. Only black and light blue are included as exterior paint colors; metallic white and red are available at extra cost. Inside, the climate control and cloth-upholstered seats are manually adjustable. Two front-row USB ports, a 4.6-inch gauge cluster display, and a four-speaker audio system are standard. The second-row seats recline and have fold-down release handles in the cargo area.

Even in Sport trim, the CX-5’s features indicate Mazda’s premium approach. The body-color side mirrors have built-in turn signals, and dual chrome-finished exhaust tips look sporty. Inside, the 10.3-inch infotainment display is hard to miss, while the leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob feel nicer than the plastic parts found in some competitors. Like all CX-5 trims, driver assist and active safety features like adaptive cruise control, lane-keep assist, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, rain-sensing wipers, and automatic emergency braking are included. These help the CX-5 earn top safety ratings from the IIHS and NHTSA.

Given its solid dynamic attributes and driver assist tech, the roughly $26,500 CX-5 Sport appeals for an entry-level model. We wouldn’t be disappointed to choose it, but it’s pretty basic.

2021 Mazda CX-5 Touring Pros and Cons

The Touring trim adds features that help the CX-5 feel less stripped out. These include hands-free keyless entry, illuminated sun visor mirrors, a six-speaker audio system, and dual-zone automatic climate control. Up front, the driver’s seat gets power adjustability, and both seats gain three-level heating. The second row is upgraded with air vents, a folding center armrest with cupholders, and tinted side windows. All seats are upholstered in leatherette with faux suede accents. Metallic silver and dark blue are added to the standard paint choices, and dark gray becomes available at extra cost.

At approximately $28,000, the 2021 CX-5 Touring trim adds features that are nice to have but nothing that’s absolutely necessary.

2021 Mazda CX-5 Carbon Edition Pros and Cons

Mazda might like you to think the 2021 CX-5 Carbon Edition is some sort of lightweight or extra-sporty model, but it’s mechanically identical to any other trim in the lineup. No carbon fiber here—that “Carbon” bit supposedly relates to the common color of the element: black, like coal. Indeed, the Carbon Edition’s grille, side mirror caps, and 19-inch wheels are finished in black. It’s coated exclusively in Polymetal Gray metallic paint, which isn’t offered on any other trim.

Interior changes include black or red leather seating upholstery, red stitching on the shift knob and steering wheel, and black trim panels. But the Carbon Edition isn’t only about styling—it’s equipped with a moonroof, power rear liftgate, auto-dimming rearview mirror, and 10-speaker Bose audio system. The front passenger seat gains power adjustability, and two USB ports are added to the second row.

Starting at just under $30,000, the CX-5 Carbon Edition adds features that boost its daily usability and enjoyment. If it’s in your budget, it’s worth a look—so long as you vibe with its blacked-out styling theme.

2021 Mazda CX-5 Carbon Turbo Edition Pros and Cons

This trim is just like the CX-5 Carbon Edition but with—you guessed it—a turbocharged engine. It’s the first CX-5 trim that’s offered with Mazda’s 2.5-liter turbocharged I-4, which bumps power to as much as 227 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque (or 250 hp and 320 lb-ft with premium fuel) from 186 hp and 186 lb-ft as standard. It’s a significant boost that changes the CX-5’s driving demeanor—that is, it’s much quicker.

The increased performance decreases fuel economy: The Carbon Edition Turbo and other CX-5 trims that use this engine are rated at 23/28 mpg with FWD, and 22/27 mpg with AWD.

Prices for the 2021 CX-5 Carbon Edition Turbo start at just under $32,000. The trim’s increased power and torque give it enthusiast appeal. However, the non-turbo Carbon Edition still has fun handling and the same features. It just isn’t as quick.

2021 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring Pros and Cons

The premium feel increases in the CX-5 Grand Touring trim. It rolls on bright-finished 19-inch wheels and gains upgraded LED lighting: headlights with DRL accents and curve-adaptive functionality, front foglights, and taillights. Inside, the seats are upholstered in black or beige leather. The gauge cluster information display increases to 7.0 inches in size. It’s also the first CX-5 trim that includes paddle shifters, which work pretty well to control the somewhat outdated six-speed automatic. Mazda tosses in a three-month trial subscription to SiriusXM satellite radio on the Grand Touring trim.

Even with these features, the roughly $31,500 CX-5 Grand Touring’s price slightly undercuts that of the Carbon Edition Turbo. However, the Grand Touring model is equipped with the naturally aspirated engine—trade-offs.

2021 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring Reserve Pros and Cons

In Grand Touring Reserve trim, the CX-5 becomes a more worthy competitor to compact luxury SUVs. It’s equipped with the turbocharged engine and AWD. Comfort improves by way of the heated steering wheel, heated and ventilated front seats, and heated rear seats. Technology upgrades include a head-up display and infotainment voice command functionality. Power-folding side mirrors and a windshield wiper de-icer add convenience.

At just over $37,000, the CX-5 Grand Touring Reserve trim takes a major price hike over the Grand Touring model. With its powertrain and upscale features, that increase seems justified. It’s expensive for a CX-5 but a relative bargain against similarly equipped luxury SUVs.

2021 Mazda CX-5 Signature Pros and Cons

As Mazda plots its move upmarket, its luxurious aims are indicated by the range-topping CX-5 Signature trim. Its 19-inch wheels have a dark silver finish, but for some reason metallic silver paint is unavailable. However its interior is covered in lovely dark brown premium leather upholstery, complemented by genuine layered wood trim. Technology enhancements include a 360-degree parking camera system and road sign recognition capability. The interior overhead lights are replaced with LEDs. Front and rear parking sensors and rear automatic braking help prevent scrapes and scuffs. The turbocharged engine and AWD are standard equipment.

The 2021 CX-5 Signature runs for about $38,500, not a huge lift over the Grand Touring Reserve model. But as nice as that brown leather is, we question if that addition and a few others are worth it.

Which 2021 Mazda CX-5 Model Is Best?

The CX-5 is truly an enthusiast’s crossover, and for that reason we think it’s best when equipped with the punchy turbocharged engine. As such, we’re inclined toward the Carbon Edition Turbo trim—it has that power. What it doesn’t have is all the upscale features of higher-end models, but the many inclusions make it a compelling value. The Carbon Edition’s catch is that it’s only available in Polymetal Gray paint, which won’t suit everyone’s tastes. Regardless, the CX-5’s great looks and dynamics make it a worthy rival to SUVs in its class or even those above.

The post What’s the Best 2021 Mazda CX-5 Trim? Here’s Our Guide appeared first on MotorTrend.

Categories: Property

Hyundai issues 3 recalls for Elantra, Kona, Santa Fe Sport

The Car Connection News Feed - Tue, 05/11/2021 - 12:00
Hyundai issued three recalls of varying magnitude and model lines, the NHTSA announced Monday. 2013-2015 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport The largest recall encompasses 151,205 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport from the 2013-2015 model years and represents an expansion of a recall initiated last August in the U.S. A brake fluid leak inside the antilock brake system...
Categories: Property