On March 29, Volkswagen’s America division released a press note saying that the company shall be changing its name to ‘Voltswagen.’ The rebranding was to stress its commitment to electric vehicles.
As it turns out, the press release was fake and the carmaker purposely leaked it ahead of April 1, which is universally celebrated as April Fool’s day. Mark Gillies, a company spokesman, confirmed Tuesday that the statement had been a pre-April Fool’s Day joke.
The stunt was supposed to be a marketing campaign for the new electric SUV — ID.4. While the name change may have been deemed a joke, Volkswagen states that the underlining theme was the emphasis on EVs.
However, the joke wasn’t funny for many because the announcement prompted the company’s stock to go up by almost five percent in one day. Following the name change, many investors believed Volkswagen is serious about the EV space and has future potential. Those who fell for the news and invested in the company are now left in limbo.
The joke has received a lot of criticism because this isn’t the first time Volkswagen has lied to the public. The German carmaker was infamously found guilty of Dieselgate, a high-profile scandal wherein the company was caught cheating and manipulating emission tests via dedicated software changes.
In a nutshell, diesel cars were emitting much more pollutants than they should, but regulators were not able to detect this due to special modifications. Volkswagen admitted that about 11 million diesel vehicles worldwide were fitted with deceptive software. The scandal cost the company US$ 35 billion in fines, penalties, and recall of millions of vehicles.
April Fool’s day is a joke and it’s normal to see companies come up with unbelievable or even bizarre ideas to grab the limelight. Although, it’s easy to distinguish between humor and serious news on April 1 since jokes are expected by everyone. Volkswagen’s timing was extremely poor and gave little opportunity for media organizations as well as investors to consider it humor.
The poorly planned publicity stunt could boomerang for the automaker. US securities regulator, the SEC, has often fined companies for fake disclosures that mislead investors. In 2018, Tesla CEO Elon Musk was fined US$ 20 million when he tweeted about turning the company private, without any funding actually lined up. The tweet boosted Tesla’s stock temporarily and created a false market frenzy, prompting a crackdown by regulators.
Latest Honda BR-V now available in the Philippines
With Honda SENSING
As 2022 winds down, Honda has released the latest iteration of its best-selling Honda BR-V in the Philippines.
It will be available in the following variants and retail prices:
- 1.5 S MT: PhP 1,090,000
- 1.5 S CVT: PhP 1,150,000
- 1.5 V CVT: PhP 1,295,000
- 1.5 VX CVT Honda SENSING: PhP 1,390,000
The Lunar Silver Metallic and Meteoroid Grey Metallic color options will be available across all variants. Taffeta White, Crystal Black Pearl, and Premium Opal White Silver Pearl, meanwhile, may be chosen depending on the variant.
Features will include newly-designed LED taillights, Daytime Running Lights (DRL), power-adjustable door mirrors, power folding mirrors, and integrated LED side turn signal lights, again depending on the chosen model.
In the cockpit area of the all-new Honda BR-V is a new 7-inch touchscreen display audio. The infotainment system supports Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and USB.
Complementing this connectivity is a sound system composed of up 6 speakers if you’re getting the VX or V CVT Honda SENSING.
Fuel economy-wise, the BR-V has also been tested to go for up to about 24 kilometers per liter for the top-of-the-line models.
With advanced features and a premium look, the 7-seater SUV will once again offer Honda SENSING to give drivers peace of mind and safety on the road.
One push start system will be available for 3 variants, while keyless entry will also be having keyless entry.
Speaking of safety, here are more features from Honda SENSING:
- Lead Car Departure Notification (LCDN) System: Alerts the driver when the car in front has moved ahead from a standstill
- Collision Mitigation Brake system (CMBS): Pedestrians are detected in front to reduce the risk of a potential collision, reducing vehicle speed
- Lane Keeping Assist System (LKAS): Keeps vehicle at the center of the road and in the best driving position
- Road Departure Mitigation System with Lane Departure Warning (RDM with LDW): Avoids collisions by providing both audible and visual warnings whenever car swerves without signal lights; LDW also notifies when the car goes off course
- Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC): Helps maintain a stable speed at a driver-determined distance, relative to the vehicle in front
- Auto-High Beam (AHB): This system allows the driver to automatically turn on high beams when there are no other vehicles ahead; it will also turn off when there is counterpart traffic
The all-new Honda BR-V is now available at any of the 37 Honda Cars dealerships nationwide.
Sony plans to pack a PlayStation 5 into a Honda
Car might not arrive until 2025
Though it’s relatively easier now, it’s still not a walk in the park to grab a new PlayStation 5. If you still find yourself without the new console, there might be a new, unlikely way to get one. Sony has opened the possibility of a built-in PS5 inside a Honda car.
Earlier this year, Sony announced a partnership with Honda to create an electric vehicle company. Naturally, an electric vehicle isn’t as easy to make as a smartphone or a console. Still, the two companies’ joint venture is going swimmingly.
According to a recent interview with the Financial Times, Sony Honda Mobility plans to integrate entertainment with mobility, creating a competitive niche to go against Tesla. In the interview, company president Izumi Kawanishi explained that adding a PlayStation 5 to a Honda car is now “technologically possible.”
However, even if it’s technologically possible, will Sony Honda Mobility do it? Kawanishi explains that the company still has to make the car completely autonomous, thereby eliminating the need for driver input and freeing riders to play in the car.
Though current electric vehicle companies sometimes tout autonomous driving, cars today still need a driver to look after the car on the road. That said, it will take a while for the company to create the car they are envisioning. A car might not materialize until 2025, at the earliest. By that time, the PlayStation 5 might not be as powerful as it is now. Maybe a PlayStation 5 Pro in a Honda car soon?
Ford elevates automobile experience through FordPass
Start, stop, lock, and unlock using your mobile device!
Ford is inching closer to becoming a technology company with its array of innovative features packed in its automobiles.
During the 25th anniversary celebration of Ford in the Philippines, the company marked the advent of FordPass in the country. It’s a mobile application that allows access to vehicle-specific content and support, making it a smart all-in-one platform for connectivity and security.
Vehicles equipped with FordPass Connect — or a cellular model containing an eSim that enables the vehicle to connect to the internet — can utilize remote control functions. For instance, Ford vehicle owners can remotely start, stop, lock, and unlock their automobiles, as well as check the fuel level through their smartphones.
There’s also a vehicle locator feature that allows Ford owners to find their vehicles in crowded parking areas. The feature is extremely useful for those who always forget where they parked their cars.
How to install FordPass?
To install FordPass, simply download the app via the App Store and Google Play Store. Select the FordPass icon on the homescreen, select “Philippines” and create your account.
After you enter your details, you can request a code for a one-time pin (OTP) to be sent via SMS. Registration will be complete when you received an SMS confirmation.
FordPass is available on mobile devices running Android 7.0 and above, and iOS 14.0 and above.
How to add a Ford Vehicle on FordPass?
If you have the next-generation Ford Ranger and next-generation Ford Everest (all models), you can add your vehicle to your FordPass app.
Click the drop-down on top of the screen and select ‘Add Vehicle’. It will prompt you to enter your vehicle identification number (VIN) and you’ll have to wait for confirmation. Once done, you can enter a nickname for your Ford Vehicle. Then, activate it.
FordPass is accessible to Ford owners starting December 2, 2022.
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