Automotive

LG and Qualcomm team up to bring webOS to vehicles

Aiming for a better in-car infotainment system

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Whether you’re the driver or passenger, in-vehicle infotainment systems play an important role to keep us entertained during long drives and heavy traffic.

LG and Qualcomm have seen this importance and plans to be one of the first companies to further improve how we pass the time while inside a vehicle.

LG, known for its televisions and consumer products like smartphones and smartwatches, is already in the automotive industry and has been supplying dashboard panels and other components to different brands. On the other hand, Qualcomm plans to incorporate its AI know-how to improve the system, among other things.

Together, they plan to further develop webOS Auto by leveraging on LG’s recently announced webOS Open Source Edition 2.0 and Qualcomm’s Snapdragon Automotive Development Platform or ADP. By sharing resources and features, consumers will soon experience more convenient in-car entertainment.

webOS is a Linux-powered platform using LG’s experience in vehicle infotainment. By making use of its webOS Open Source Edition 2.0, developers can experience new features that will be incorporated in webOS Auto.

Meanwhile, the Snapdragon ADP features top-notch infotainment technologies supported through artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities, advanced graphics for high-resolution multiple display configurations, and ultra HD media streaming.

“We very much value this collaboration with Qualcomm expands the ecosystem of the webOS Auto platform and with the latest solutions from Qualcomm such as 5G networks and multimedia, customers will be able to experience the same entertainment at home in connected cars.,” said Dr. I.P. Park, president and CTO of LG Electronics. “Together, webOS and Snapdragon ADP will provide a high-performing, comprehensive hardware and software platform for future vehicle infotainment systems.”

Automotive

Honda introduces its new and affordable City variant

Ready to take on any urban challenge

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Honda Cars Philippines, Inc. has just introduced its new and affordable Honda City. The Honda City 1.5 S CVT is currently the most affordable model in its family that comes with an Earth Dreams Technology Continuously Variable Transmission.

This series has been known as the brand’s best-selling nameplate in the Philippines and this time, the new City has a Euro-4 1.5-liter SOHC four-cylinder i-VTEC engine with Eco Assist System. Together with its CVT configuration, this subcompact sedan delivers 118hp and 145Nm of torque which produces a powerful yet efficient powertrain ready to take on any urban challenge.

To give a quick rundown of some of its features, the City 1.5 S CVT aims to give customers one of the best value for money propositions in its class. At this price point, you still get features such as front and rear windshield defoggers, power windows, power door locks, security alarm with immobilizer, LED daytime running lights, and keyless entry as standard.

Plus, since Honda makes no compromise when it comes to safety, the new City also offers dual airbags, anti-lock braking system (ABS) with electronic brake-force distribution (EBD).

Priced at PhP 820,000, the Honda City is available in four different colors such as Lunar Silver, Modern Steel Metallic, Crystal, Black Pearl, and Taffeta White. Units are already available in Honda dealerships nationwide.

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Automotive

The Tesla pickup just got a reveal date

We’ll finally see Elon Musk’s promising electric truck

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People have always been on the lookout for any updates regarding Elon Musk’s upcoming pickup truck ever since he first announced the project. It got a lot of people excited as it promises more power for less the asking price. Well, we’re only a few days away from its unveiling as Musk finally announced its reveal date.

According to the main man of Tesla, the electric pickup truck will be unveiled on November 21, 2019 in Los Angeles near the SpaceX rocket factory.

If you still remember some of Musk’s previous tweets, his main concern for the upcoming truck is for “people to get a really great truck for US$ 49,000” and it seems like he’s dead set on doing that. It should also be more capable than other trucks like the Ford F150 and even outperform a Porsche 911.

In more than a week’s time, we’ll finally get to see the Tesla pickup and I for one am just looking forward to seeing what it will offer. In the meantime, you may read our article on what to expect when it finally gets unveiled.

READ MORE: Anticipating the Tesla Pickup Truck: What you need to know

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Automotive

Mercedes-Benz GLC and V-Class: Living the fly life

Smooth sailing on the GLC 200 and V-Class 220d

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When we hear the words “upper class” in a market segment, we usually think of luxury lifestyle, extravagant vacations, fine dining, and everything fancy. So when it comes to their means of transportation, we expect nothing less than utmost grandiosity.

With this in mind, some premium car brands will naturally come to mind and one of them is Mercedes-Benz.  This was the idea that Auto Nation Group, the official distributor of Mercedes-Benz in the Philippines, had in mind when they hosted the Media Ride and Drive — a day-long activity that offered participants the choice to drive the new GLC 200 and V-Class 220d or enjoy the comfortable ride and amenities offered inside both these new models.

Mercedes-Benz GLC 200

Instead of usual technical reviews, it was their goal for the participants to experience the affluent life — to be driven to where their consumers would go and do activities they would commonly do.

Scuba diving and the GLC

Of course, I took an underwater selfie

The first activity was a 3-hour course in scuba diving led by accredited PADI diver Igor Subora.  Held at the indoor scuba facilities of The Upper Deck Sports and Lifestyle Center in Ortigas, the activity aimed to give a glimpse into the lifestyle of someone with a spirit of adventure – a persona that perfectly matches the personality and performance of the new GLC.

According to Joseph Ayllon, head of PR Communications, the new GLC is a great match for confident go-getters in life determined to achieve goals. He says that it’s the right vehicle to take out of town or to a quick getaway within the city – like taking the morning off to go scuba diving.

The GLC remains as the best-selling Mercedes-Benz for 10 years with more than 1.6 million units sold. Priced at PhP 4,290,000.00, the GLC 200 is a robust adventure luxury SUV that delivers 197hp and 320Nm of torque from a 2.0 turbo petrol engine mated to a 9G-TRONIC 9-speed automatic transmission.

Its interior is wrapped in premium soft-touch materials, leather, and brushed metal accents. The soft leather seats were exceptionally comfortable, with plenty of head and legroom. In addition, the Burmester surround audio system is impressive and gave crisp & immersive sound.

Looking at the dashboard, it boasts a high-definition all-digital instrument panel along with their intelligent voice command LINGUATRONIC with “Hey, Mercedes” functionality which we found quite useful for a hands-free driving experience.

Sitting at the back, this SUV felt smooth and cabin noise was well isolated. Overall, this SUV is a perfect fusion of adventure and luxury.

R&R with the V-Class

After our scuba diving training and certification, we went our way to our lunch venue at Misto Seda-Vertis North onboard the 2019 Mercedes-Benz V-Class 220d. Priced at PhP 4,690,000.00, this lounge on wheels puts out 163hp and 380Nm of torque from a 2.2-liter diesel engine mated to a 7G-TRONIC PLUS 7-speed automatic transmission.

Mercedes-Benz V-Class 220d

As a passenger sitting on the third row, it didn’t feel like you were in a van; the cabin was unbelievably quiet and immensely comfortable. Everywhere you touch is made of premium quality material and the leather-wrapped captain seats just give you a sense of grandeur — almost like sitting on Queen Elizabeth’s throne.

The interior is spacious with abundant head and legroom. In addition, this model boasts swivel seats with a built-in pullout folding table. Looking out, I just loved how you are surrounded by huge & bright windows, perfect for scenic road-trips.

I have never felt more comfortable riding a third-row seat from a vehicle of this segment. You just feel pampered and EDSA traffic suddenly wasn’t so stressful.

After our bounteous buffet lunch at Misto, it was time to head to the last destination and the day was wrapped up with a relaxing full body massage at the Upper Deck Recovery Spa.

End of the day thoughts

As we ended this unique drive, one thing was made crystal clear to me: Mercedes-Benz really knows who their products are for and the new GLC 200 and new V-Class 220d truly cater to the needs and demands of this market segment.

I have to admit that I was easily spoiled by the activities the company has prepared — kicking it off with a fun diving experience, having a feast, and ending the day with a massage. Although, that’s exactly what they want their customers to feel with these new offerings — pampered and spoiled while getting from point A to point B.

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