Automotive

Tesla plans to make a US$ 25K autonomous electric car soon

Elon Musk is extremely optimistic

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At its Battery Day event, Tesla CEO Elon Musk said the company intends to launch an affordable electric car within three years. The aimed price is around US$ 25,000 — a radically low price for an electric vehicle. The future car hasn’t received a name yet, but rumors suggest it could be Tesla Model C, where C stands for compact.

The announcement was made after Musk reviewed Tesla’s battery development and manufacturing. He is confident that these factors shall help the company offer cut-throat pricing and make the cutting-edge technology available to the masses.

However, the most interesting feature of the car will be its autonomous capability. Sensors and other onboard equipment are expensive and it remains to be seen whether Tesla is able to fulfill its promise.

Musk revealed a new battery design that incorporates a larger and more efficient cell. The new technology is dubbed “tabless” and is said to increase density by five times, offering 16 percent more range. But the technology announced is likely to take years to implement.

The cost of electric cars has consistently dropped in the last few years and Tesla is relying on this trend to hype up its future products. According to The Verge, Prices have already fallen from a lofty US$ 1,100/kWh just ten years ago to about US$ 156/kWh in 2019.

Altough, this isn’t the first time Musk has announced an affordable EV. The Model 3 was initially touted to cost US$ 35,000 but the base option starts at US$ 37,990 while the Performance variant goes for US$ 54,990.

Ultimately, Tesla hopes to make 20 million vehicles a year, Musk said

Automotive

Honda presses forward on its road safety advocacy programs

Reducing road accidents and fatalities one youngster at a time

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Honda Cars Philippines Inc. (HCPI) demonstrates its commitment to “Safety for Everyone” through its Teen Smart road safety workshops, designed for senior high school students.

For years, the company has been conducting seminars and workshops on road safety for teenagers. Thousands of young adults have already participated in the Teen Smart program.

This year, the program got some fine-tuning — aiming to strengthen the youth’s consciousness on the concept of road safety.

Inspired by “Safety for Everyone”, the initiative deepens the sense of responsibility among teenagers and young adults, and how they can help reduce road accidents and fatalities. The program also includes practical things they can do even as pedestrians, passengers, or drivers.

The Teen Smart Program was opened through a virtual signing held on November 12, 2021. Sessions will be delivered by Honda Motor Japan-trained instructors of the Honda Safety Driving Center.

Online learning sessions will run from November 2021 until May 2022, targeting public schools in Sta. Rosa City, Laguna, Philippines.

For more information about the Teen Smart program and other sustainability initiatives, visit hondaphil.com.

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Automotive

Honda unveils long-term plan for road safety using technologies

Safety for everyone

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File Photo: Honda Brio RS 1

Honda Motors held the world premiere of advanced future safety technologies the company is currently developing for its ultimate goal of zero traffic collision fatalities by 2050.

Honda will strive to attain its goal by utilizing two key technologies. One is the world’s first artificial intelligence (AI)-powered Intelligent Driver-Assistive Technology to provide advanced assistance to drivers.

The other is the Safe and Sound Network Technology which connects all road users, both people and mobility products, through telecommunications, to be able to accurately predict potential risks and help people avoid collisions before they occur.

Zero traffic collision fatalities by 2050

Striving for a collision-free society for everyone sharing the road is represented by Honda’s global safety slogan, Safety for Everyone.

Honda has been pursuing the research and development of safety technologies from the perspective of both hardware and software.

For the pursuit of a collision-free society, Honda will expand the introduction of Honda SENSING 360, a recently announced omnidirectional safety and driver-assistive system, to all models to go on sale in all major markets by 2030.

Moreover, Honda will continue working to expand application of a motorcycle detection function and further enhance functions of its ADAS (advanced driver-assistance system).

Safety for each individual

Honda also unveiled the Intelligent Driver-Assistive Technology which uses ADAS sensors and cameras to recognize potential risks in the vehicle’s surroundings.

This enables AI to detect driving risks and determine optimal driving behavior on a real-time basis to offer assistance accurately suited to the driver’s mindset and current traffic situations.

Next-generation driver assist technology

In developing the future of driver-assist technologies, Honda is taking into consideration three essential points:

  • No driving operation errors (Operational assist) where the vehicle offers AI-based assist to reduce drifting and other risks;
  • No oversight / No prediction errors (Cognitive assist) where the vehicle communicates risks with visual, tactile and auditory sensations; and
  • No errors due to daydreaming and careless driving (Attentiveness assist), where the vehicle helps reduce driver fatigue and drowsiness.

Technologies in the research and development phase include risk indicators, seatbelt control, 3D audio, bio feedback, and vibration stimulus through the backseat.

Mutual safety for all road users

Honda also established the Safe and Sound Network Technology which connects all road users through telecommunication.

The system will understand and recognize situations and the surrounding environments of each driver.

Through the communication network, information about potential risks in the traffic environment will be aggregated in the server and risks are predicted using the reproduction of the traffic environment in the virtual space.

Collision-free society

Honda is also utilizing existing telecommunication technologies to realize its vision of a “collision-free” society for all road users as these techs will enable everyone sharing the road to be connected and coexist.

With the Safe and Sound Technology, information about potential risks in the traffic environment are detected using information obtained from roadside cameras, on-board cameras, and smartphones.

This information gets aggregated in a virtual space that replicates the traffic situation, taking into consideration as well the conditions and characteristics of each road user.

Honda is aiming for real-world implementation of the said technologies after 2030, as the car company is working on standardizing them in the second half of the 2020s.

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Automotive

11th generation Honda Civic now in the Philippines

New look, more features

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Honda Cars’s 11th generation All-New Honda Civic is now available in the Philippine market, as announced by the company virtually via livestream last November 23.

The iconic sedan features a new clean-cut look along with a range of high-tech features, along with a standard VTEC turbo engine for a powerful driving experience.

For the 11th generation, Honda focused on Design, Dynamics, and Human Machine Interface (HMI) to achieve an “Exhilarating Civic” grand concept.

Exterior

The All-New Civic had a full-model change, taking into consideration design elegance and sportiness. The compact sedan is longer compared to the previous design.

In front are newly-shaped headlights that can house full LEDS or projector halogens. Daytime Running Lights (DRLs) are made standard across the range.

LED fog lights are also available for the V Turbo CVT Honda SENSING and the RS Turbo CVT Honda SENSING.

The sides also get an aesthetic upgrade, as well as improved driver visibility with the design changes in the door mirrors.

The entire rear end has also been redone, having a new pair of LED taillights. Other RS-exclusive details include black-painted side mirrors, door handles, sharkfin antenna and trunk spoiler, along with chrome-finished dual-exhaust pipes.

Interior

The 11th generation AllNew Civics interior also gets an overhaul towards a minimalist design.

Depending on the trim level, the AllNew Civic could either come with fabric seats, or a fine combo of suede and leather upholstery exclusive on the RS

The latest model sports cabin space than most sedans in the segment. Additional space was used to improve the ease of getting in and out of the car.

The new dimensions also make rear seat comfort better, while compartments are located all around the cabin for personal items.

For incar entertainment, all variants of the AllNew Civic come with touchscreen display audio that either measures from 7 to 9 inches.

Both screens are Android Auto and Apple CarPlay capable, while the larger screen has Wireless Apple CarPlay.

The infotainment systems are powered starting with 4 speakers for the S and up to 12 for the RS variant on a Bose sound system.

Other RS-exclusive convenience features include automatic climate control, dual zone, and a 10.2-inch full-digital cluster display supported with steering wheel mounted controls.

Engine and transmission

One of the main highlights of the 11th generation AllNew Civic is the 1.5-liter 4-Cylinder DOHC VTEC Turbo engine found in all grades.

The latest model now has an all-Turbo variant range with the engine producing more torque than before.

The Civic’s new powertrain also has an additional 37 PS and 66Nm, versus its predecessors 1.8L Naturally-Aspirated. 

All trims of the Civic are paired with a Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT).

The compact sedan also has distinct driving modes including Econ, Normal, and lastly, Sport, that is particularly found in the RS variant.

Safety

To make driving the latest Civic safe for everyone, Honda SENSING is now standard in all variants of the 11th generation model.

The following features are included:

  • Collision Mitigation Braking System (CMBS)
  • Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) with Low-Speed Follow (LSF)
  • Lane Keeping Assist System (LKAS)
  • Road Departure Mitigation System with Lane Departure Warning (RDM with LDW)
  • Auto High-Beam (AHB)
  • Lead Car Departure Notification System (LCDN) – New

The new Honda SENSING system uses a single monocular camera with a wider field of view combined with improved software.

This will make the recognition of vehicle, motorcycle, bicycle, pedestrian and road markings better.

The Honda’s G-force Control (G-CON) Collision Safety Body that enhances impact absorption for the added protection of passengers in the event a collision occurs.

In addition, the latest Civic has advanced safety features that are now available across all variants like Speed Sensing Door Locks, Multi-View Reverse Camera, and Keyless Entry System.

The Side Curtain Airbags, Honda LaneWatch Camera, and the Walk Away Auto Door Lock function, meanwhile, are exclusive on the RS variant.

Furthermore, other features such as the Driver and Front Passenger Airbags, Side Airbags, Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS), Electronic Brake Force Distribution (EBD), Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA), Hill Start Assist (HSA), Emergency Stop Signal (ESS), Child Lock, ISOFIX Child Seat Anchor, Security Alarm, and immobilizer are all included across all variants.

Pricing, availability, colors

The 11th generation All-New Civic is now available at all 37 Honda Cars dealerships nationwide and comes in five colors:

  • Morning Mist Blue Metallic (new color; V Turbo CVT Honda SENSING and S Turbo CVT Honda SENSING)
  • Meteoroid Grey Metallic (new color; RS Turbo CVT Honda SENSING, V Turbo CVT Honda SENSING, and S Turbo CVT Honda SENSING)
  • Ignite Red Metallic (exclusively for RS Turbo CVT Honda SENSING)
  • Platinum White Pearl (RS Turbo CVT Honda SENSING and V Turbo CVT Honda SENSING only) – for an additional PhP 20,000
  • Lunar Silver Metallic (exclusively for S Turbo CVT Honda SENSING)

Notably, Honda is offering the chance to choose Platinum White Pearl for all variants at no additional cost until November 30, 2021.

Customers who will reserve the All-New Civic V Turbo CVT Honda SENSING variant until December 31, 2021 are likewise entitled to a free Modulo Trunk Tray and Modulo Exhaust Pipe Finisher on top of all other promotions offered for the month of the vehicle release until January 31, 2022.

Below are all the available variants of the AllNew Honda Civic with their corresponding Suggested Retail Prices:

  • S Turbo CVT Honda SENSINGPhP 1,290,000
  • V Turbo CVT Honda SENSINGPhP 1,498,000
  • RS Turbo CVT Honda SENSINGPhP 1,690,000
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