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BMW to launch diesel trade-in scheme with £1700 discounts to upgrade dirtier dervs

In a surprise twist to the ongoing environmental debate reshaping Europe’s car industry, BMW has announced its own diesel ‘scrappage scheme’ to incentivise the take-up of low CO2 models.

Owners of EU4 or earlier oil-burning cars – not just BMWs – will be eligible for extra discounts ‘of up to €2000’ when trading up to a newer model. BMW UK has confirmed it will be running the scheme, with up to £1700 off.

BMW is at pains to point out it’s not technically a scrappage scheme, as the old diesels won’t necessarily be junked. But it’s akin to the Government’s 2009 trade-in scheme, designed to invigorate the new-car market during the global recession.

How BMW’s trade-in scheme will work

As ever with a scheme like this, there’s a lot of small print. And some of it is still being worked out by the UK distributor.

The ‘environmental bonus’ of up to £1700 will vary depending on the model being bought and the car being traded in, and is at the salesman’s discretion. The scheme is set to run until 31 December 2017, although BMW admits it could be extended.

It will be open to anyone trading up to a new BMW or Mini – but there are caveats. The model you’re buying must be:

  • An i3 electric car or range-extender (above)
  • A plug-in hybrid model such as the 330e
  • Any EU6 model with CO2 under 130g/km

You can’t sadly use the scrappage scheme to trade up to a BMW M3, say. This is all about pushing the clean-fuel alternatives.

BMW is anticipating customer confusion over whether their car is EU4 or not and is planning to promote online calculators. BMW sold EU4 diesels up to 2010.

When does BMW’s trade-in scheme launch?

Soon. ‘Certainly before the end of August 2017,’ pledges BMW. If you’re thinking of upgrading your car, now could be a good time. The deal is in addition to any government incentives promoting the take-up of clean-fuel cars, such as the plug-in car grant.

A BMW spokesman told CAR: ‘If you look around the world at countries like Norway where electrification has really taken off, the change has been driven by incentives. We have the widest range of plug-in cars on the market and this will help to draw in new customers to BMW.’

Munich is expecting to exceed 100,000 sales of electrified cars in 2017 for the first time.


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5 Simple Tricks for The Perfect Journey

Are you game for a long road trip adventure? Never set out on a journey without following the tips below.

  1. Make sure your car is clean.

It’s important to prepare your vehicle for a long drive before you embark on one. Has it been taken to a workshop for cleaning, tire inflation, general checkup, and maintenance?

  1. Bring the right stuff.

When you pack the right stuff before the journey, you will experience nothing but comfort and convenience. Take note that when road tripping, your car will be your home for hours. So, bring along with you the following basics: paper towels, water, some medication, clothes, and money.

Make sure also that you have a spare tire, jumper cables and a jack. Last but not least, take note of phone numbers that you may need for roadside assistance.

  1. Properly working mobile network

When you are going on a trip, don’t disregard the possibility that you might get stranded. Hence, you need to have apps such as Waze and Google Maps.

Mobile signal becomes unreliable sometimes, especially if you are in a remote area, so it is advisable to use a Wi-Fi dongle for connectivity. 

  1. Be open to anything that might come up.

Unexpected things always happen, especially on a trip. Ensure to keep an open mind and go with the flow as you never know when great opportunities will come. Take note that sometimes, unplanned surprises make the best stories. 

  1. Avoid the highways.

If you don’t have a certain destination or a strict schedule, then you can take advantage of it by driving through a serene, twisty back road. This gives you a relaxing and stress-free drive and a chance to explore new spots that you have never seen before.

Follow these 5 tips to experience a fun and relaxing road trip no matter the season. To add some spice to your journey, drive the car of your dreams. Buy a second hand car today from a reputable car dealer in Dubai!

Porsche Dubai

Porsche Unveils Plan to Join Formula E

Just recently, German automaker Porsche has announced that its works team will contend in Formula E. Hence, the company will end its participation in the LMP1 class of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) at the end of this year’s season. The car manufacturer keeps its focus on international GT racing, and will concentrate its motorsport strategy on utilizing the 911 RSR in the GT class of the WEC, the spotlight of which is the 24 Hours of Le Mans, as well as the American IMSA WeatherTech Sports Car Championship and other long distance classics.

This motorsport realignment originates from the direction planned for the company in Porsche Strategy 2025, which will see the automaker create a blend of full-electric sports cars and pure GT vehicles, such as the first fully battery-powered Mission E road car.

According to Michael Steiner, Member of the Executive Board for Research and Development at Porsche AG, foraying into Formula E and achieving success in this category are the logical results of their Mission E. He notes that the growing freedom for in-house technology developments makes Formula E attractive to them.

“Porsche is working with alternative, innovative drive concepts. For us, Formula E is the ultimate competitive environment for driving forward the development of high-performance vehicles in areas such as environmental friendliness, efficiency and sustainability.”

The German automaker has already taken the first steps towards the development of its Formula E racing car this year. At the same time, it is also increasing commitment in the GT class. Steiner says that different manufacturers and the quality of both IMSA and WEC have paved the way for them to reinforce their commitment and focus their energies on using the 911 RSR. “We want to be number one. To do that, we must invest accordingly.”

After four successful years, three consecutive victories at the 24 Hours of Le Mans and World Championship titles in both the team and driver classification in 2015 and 2016, Porsche will leave the LMP1 class behind. However, this year, the works team from Weissach desires to defend the two World Championship titles one more time.

The season is slated to end on November 18 in Bahrain. Porsche will reportedly keep the LMP1 team fully intact, including the factory drivers. Apart from ventures in racing series and the preparation for the highly anticipated Formula E, Porsche is looking into other fields of application and development areas.

Are you a fan of Porsche? With a number of dealerships offering luxury cars in Dubai, you can find the best Porsche model that perfectly suits your taste and needs. What’s great is that you can choose from a huge variety of competitively priced pre-owned Porsche in Dubai.



Jaguar F Space

2017 Jaguar F-Pace: The Ultimate Head-turner SUV

If you are a meticulous driver, everything that you are looking for in a luxury car is in the Jaguar F-Pace.

It is inspired by the F-Type giving it a sports car DNA. From its bonnet bulge to the rear haunches, its striking looks make it unique and provide it with a head-turning presence.

This performance SUV blends efficiency with maximum driving exhilaration so you are guaranteed to experience nothing but satisfaction in every journey. Another remarkable attribute of this British masterpiece is its technologically advanced nature, thus keeping you and your passengers comfortable, safe, connected and entertained.

In the interior, you can indulge in supreme luxury and spaciousness. The F-Pace comes with a class-leading boot capacity of 650 liters and a 40:20:40 rear seat folding configuration. There is also no room for boredom, thanks to the avant-garde technology such as optional Heads-up Display (HUD) and Activity Key, as well as state-of-the-art driving aids to make every trip easier and more relaxed. These include the InControl multimedia system, which keep all passengers entertained and keep you connected to the outside world.

Here in Dubai is the best place to own the 2017 Jaguar F-Pace. If you don’t have a budget for a brand new one, you can always go for a used Jaguar. Visit the right car dealer that offers approved used Jaguar and luxury cars in Dubai today!

Jaguar E-Pace rolls in with a record

Making an entry with a drum roll wasn’t good enough for Jaguar’s compact performance SUV. So, the Jaguar E-Pace chose a barrel roll instead. F-Pace’s little bro is here, and has made a landing in the Guinness Book of World Records with its first leap!

Jaguar E-Pace leapt into the record books with a 15.3 metre long jump complete with a 270-degree corkscrew-like ‘barrel roll’, with stunt driver Terry Grant at its wheel. Just as big bro F-Pace caused some drama and din with its spectacular GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS™ setting loop-the-loop in 2015.

Months of testing and analysis led to fine-tuning the absolutely-don’t-try-it-at-home stunt to a precise speed of run-up. At ExCeL in London – one of a handful of venues in the UK big enough for the 160-metre run-up and run-off needed for the 15-metre leap – ramps were modelled extensively using CAD. Terry Grant is an old hand at film stunts and holds an impressive 21 GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS™ titles himself. This is his first barrel roll with a production car; and he experienced a G-Force of 5.5 during the 270-degree twist! As for the new SUV from Jaguar, it was the final test of agility and precision after 25 arduous months of testing across four continents.

Take another look at the loop-the-loop by the F-Pace below, also performed by Terry Grant.

The Jaguar E-PACE is a five-seat, compact SUV created to meld the core design and performance elements of a Jaguar sports car with a spacious, practical and connected all-wheel-drive vehicle. It is the third in the family of SUVs that includes the F-Pace and the all-electric I-PACE Concept.

From the outside, it looks unmistakably like a resized photocopy of the F-PACE – just the way it should look. The Jaguar grille, muscular haunches and short overhangs speak a familiar design language while the Jaguar F-TYPE inspiration shows up in the fast sweep of the roofline and the distinctive side window graphic. Looking shorter and therefore stockier than its big bro, the E-PACE shares the family’s bold and purposeful stance – and reading from the dramatic entry, it has got the agile dynamics, too! Ian Callum, Director of Design, Jaguar: “Established Jaguar design principles ensure the E-PACE is immediately recognisable as the sports car of its class. Our new compact SUV combines the interior space, connectivity and security that families expect with the kind of proportions, purity of design and performance not usually associated with such a practical vehicle.

Inside the connected world of Jaguar E-Pace

There is a lot you can do with the E-Pace with remote access. Start it or set the climate; check fuel levels or mileage using a smart watch or phone or track the car itself; and connect to your favourite apps, including Spotify, on the 10 inch screen that comes as standard. E-Pace recognizes every passenger is a digital island and provides up to four 12-volt charging points, five USB connections as well as a 4G Wi-Fi hotspot for up to eight devices!

As for what you lug along, the E-Pace can tow up to 1,800kg (braked), and the rear has place for a pushchair, a set of golf clubs and a large suitcase thanks to the vehicle’s sophisticated Integral Link rear suspension architecture.

Driving dynamics

Among the petrol and diesel options available, the 300PS Ingenium petrol turbo engine powers the E-Pace from 0-100 kmph in just 6.4 seconds while the front-wheel drive 150PS Ingenium diesel delivers CO2emissions of 124g/km only.

The throttle, automatic transmission, steering, and the Adaptive Dynamics suspension system (where fitted) can be tuned individually. One of those modern pre-emptive electronic functions, Adaptive Dynamics senses driver input, body and wheel movements and accordingly adjusts suspension, damping and the chassis for improved roll control and agility. Jaguar has introduced an intelligent all-wheel-drive system called Active Driveline that adds exceptional traction to the rear-wheel-drive using torque biasing. This results in optimal stability, dynamics and fuel efficiency for E-Pace in all conditions, promises JLR.

Digital age safety and convenience

Jaguar’s foray into Autonomous Mobility is paying dividends in individual models. The E-PACE features a stereo camera that works hand in glove with the electric power assisted steering system and rear radars. This equips E-Pace with an advanced Autonomous Emergency Braking system, Lane Keep Assist, Blind Spot Assist and Traffic Sign Recognition. It also has Intelligent Speed Limiter and Driver Condition Monitor systems. Parking assistance, front and rear, is standard. A Forward Traffic Detection system warns of approaching vehicles at junctions when visibility is compromised. Besides pedestrian detection, the E-Pace has a pedestrian airbag, which deploys from beneath the trailing edge of the bonnet in the event of a collision.

Jaguar E-Type introduces its next-generation Head-Up Display to help the driver not to look away from the road. Using large, full-colour graphics, this can project alerts and updates for the infotainment, safety and convenience features on top of the regular vehicle speed info and navigation directions. A 12.3-inch full colour digital instrument panel and two premium Meridian audio systems are also available.

With the E-PACE, Jaguar has introduced a wearable Activity Key that doesn’t require the driver to carry the key fob while going jogging, swimming or cycling. The waterproof and shockproof wristband has an integrated transponder, which allows temporary deactivation of the key fobs left inside the vehicle. Now, that’s a useful innovation for those as active as Jaguar’s new compact performance SUV!


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Jaguar F-Type Convertible 2015 Review: Kitty Kitty Bang Bang

The Jaguar F-Type is one of those cars that stun you at first glance. It gives people who have ever considered buying a sports car in their lives an affirmative response that they certainly should.

UPSIDE – Powerful and playful, Stunning design, Terrific sport mode, Thrilling sound effects, Excellent music system

FLIPSIDE – Low steering feel, Stingy storage, Wind deflector hinders rear view on hazy days, Lukewarm manual mode

The Price: AED 429,000

Paraded as the heir to the E Type of yore, the F-Type really compels people to relook at their options – one, for being a Jaguar and two, for being a viable alternative to the Porsche that is as much a cliché as it is a sports car. The F-Type doesn’t warrant the wait for a mid-life crisis to arise. It’s a youthful show off, as verified by the abundant eyeballs to the auditory confirmation of its exhaust pipes. It even comes with a button for enhancing the exhaust output by quickening the airflow and amplifying the boom, bang and sputter.

The Drive

Of the three variants available, the powerful F-Type convertible V8 S is my first ride. And unlike an Aston Martin or a Maserati track car, this one is eager to lift off. So you ought to be careful with that missile-launcher tucked under your right foot. The car not only snarls but it snarls ahead as well.

While it denies the firm feedback one expects of a sports steering, this is smoothness you wouldn’t complain about because it is quick in its response and reliable in handling. It is good to the grip, sort of thick and rather sport sized. The Jaguar F-Type is, and behaves like, a rear wheel drive with the tendency of slight tail movement but overall it is a well-controlled, well-mannered car if you wouldn’t count in its boisterousness.

The V8 engine is mated to the ‘blockbuster’ 8-speed ZF transmission. The shifts are amazingly quick and before I knew, the speedo was hovering close to 140, with the engine spin still under 1,400 per minute. I didn’t have to downshift or choose the Sport mode to egg the F-Type on; keeping the engine revving was good enough – all the way up to almost 6,500rpms, just 200 below the red line. Each time I pushed the throttle, the response pushed me back in my seat.

Yes, this car is quick. Way beyond its take off velocity due to the powerful low range torque, it can mount from speed to speed without thinking twice. Even with a manual transmission that shifts purposefully and rapidly, the Sport mode is the central point of sports in the F-Type, especially when it comes to the blips and the boosted revs. The Manual mode gets overridden by the auto but then, it’s still fun-a-plenty. Jaguar has concocted a piquant mix of fun, fashion and fantasy in the F-Type. The 0 to 100 came up in a casual five; but even more exciting is the way the F-Type shoots from 100 to way beyond in a flash of green light – the Sport mode is the killer. And if you were to tell me that it could do 100 to 200 in 2.5 seconds flat, I would probably believe you.

Just above the empty space in the rear, where two seats are often pointlessly mounted in a compact sports car, there is a thin meshed screen which is designed to deflect wind with the top down, and helps in reducing the glare from behind. But on the humid evening that I drove the F-Type out of the Jaguar garage, it was a pain. I had to rely on the side view mirrors for a long time because the haze wasn’t helping. The side view mirrors and the overall design doesn’t make the job hard for you, so that turned out fine.

SPECS: 2015 F-Type V8 S Convertible: 5.0L Supercharged all-aluminium engine / 495hp@6500 rpm / 625 Nm torque @ 2500 – 5500 rpm / 0 – 100 kmph in 4.3 sec / Max 300 kmph (limited) / 8-Speed ZF 8HP Quickshift automatic transmission with SportShift / Jaguar Active Differential / Fuel efficiency (test figure) 6.1 km/L

Dimensions: LXWXH: 4470 x 1923 x 1319 mm / Wheel base: 2622 mm / Weight: 1665 kg / Load space: 196 L (148 L with space saver wheel)

The Design

It could easily be one of the most alluringly designed Jaguars, with its ‘neither small nor big’ grille, air vents on top and the grill sides and a narrow pair of eyes that could vanish into the prowling dark. The pronounced spoiler and very narrow red rear lamps that extend till the fenders give it a sharp and aggressive finish, with the four bazookas sticking out of the lower rear.

The only aspect this car could be compared to the Boxster S is in the shape of its wide, burly rear. Compactly sized in its entirety, the Jaguar F-Type has muscular haunches especially in the rear while the brawny front fenders remind you of the XKR.

Cabin and Controls

Inside, the F-Type sets itself apart from most other sports cabins with distinct luxury, as exemplified in the textured aluminium on the dashboard, the soft-touch wraparound leather, the armrest and windowsills that feel too cushioned for a sports car or the seats in red leather with their black complement.

The quick Jaguar F-Type is also quick to let its roof down – in a dozen seconds or so. The telematix is directly from the JLR family and so is the hallmark Meridian system. It’s a cabin that’s easy on you with a phone-navigation system that has all the relevant cues. The parking brake disengages itself as you move out, so that’s one thing less to think about.

With a series of rocker switches that governs the controls from air-conditioning to the Dynamic mode, the Jaguar F-Type cabin is absolutely well thought out, but for the storage. A couple of felt-lined niches between the seats and under the armrest are all you have. In fact, with a spare tyre crammed into the smallish boot, our photographer had to abandon his kit altogether!

The Essential Jaguar F-Type

Things don’t get much sportier than the Dynamic mode of the Jaguar F-Type, as much for turning its heavy frame nimble as for triggering the bonus booms of the exhaust. Despite a firm seatback, the two-seater is unusually comfortable for a sports car but the storage is meagre, even by a sporty scale!

Right from how it looks to the way it drives, the Jaguar F-Type is an exciting set of wheels. Every shift feels like it isn’t transferring power to the wheels but electricity directly to your cortex. Priced between a Porsche Boxster S and a 911, the feline roadster is bang for the buck, quite literally!


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2017 Bentley Bentayga

What It Is: Currently the fastest (187 mph) and most expensive SUV on the market, the Bentayga is Bentley’s opening salvo to the ever-expanding SUV ranks, and it stands alone as the only nameplate—not simply a more powerful and gussied up variant—to start north of $200,000. However, other ultraluxury makers, among them Lamborghini, Rolls-Royce, Mercedes-Maybach, Aston Martin, and likely even Ferrari, are rushing to join this party as swiftly as possible. A twin-turbo 6.0-liter W-12 making 600 horsepower and 664 lb-ft of torque endows the roughly Audi Q7–sized Bentayga—no surprise given that it’s based on the Audi’s bones—with mega thrust. When called on, the Bentayga points its nose skyward (not unlike many of its owners) and then charges forward like it’s trying to escape the atmosphere. The pricing of this four- or five-seat über ute (a third-row option is being added for 2018) accelerates just about as quickly, with nearly endless options small and large, even including unusual and comprehensive falconry and fly-fishing packages as well as a $170,000 Tourbillon by Breitling timepiece.

Why We Tested It and How It Performed: Both of our previous Bentayga tests took place in California running 91-octane fuel. As impressive as the results were—warping this nearly 6000-pound SUV to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds—we wondered if the W-12 might run even stronger on the 93 octane readily available in our home state of Michigan. Short answer: Nope. This latest Bentayga hit 60 mph in 3.6 and the quarter-mile in 12 seconds flat. The 60-mph time was a tenth shy of the other two tests, but the rest of the numbers fell between those gathered in our two previous outings, including the 4.1-second 5-to-60-mph blast and the 2.4- and 2.8-second 30-to-50-mph and 50-to-70 passing times. That’s still extremely quick, and given that our latest ultra-9luxe utilitarian sled weighed 109 pounds more than the quickest example—option content can make a significant difference here—those results are to be expected. However, this Bentayga turned in its best braking and skidpad performances, which still weren’t all that impressive, as we have yet to test one on the available summer tires.

What We Like: A dozen reciprocating cylinders under the hood is a magnificent start—from the velvety-smooth manner in which they alight, to the tastefully light snarl of the exhaust, and, of course, to never wanting for power. On the other end of the Bentayga’s performance spectrum, this latest version of the W-12 proved unexpectedly efficient, posting 23 mpg on our 75-mph highway test, substantially exceeding its EPA highway rating and matching the all-wheel-drive GMC Acadia Denali, which has half the cylinders and about half the power. The Bentayga’s interior looks the $200K-plus part, with spectacular leather that extends all the way down the doors—where the cheapening out happens and leather turns to plastic on lesser vehicles—and over the entire headliner. (Of the 15 available standard colors of leather, our car wore a stunning two-tone brown/beige.) Other details worthy of the admiration of the numerous onlookers vying for a glimpse include an exquisite jewelry holder that clips into the front cupholders, elegant analog gauges (no digital cluster here to pander to the new-money crowd, thank you very much), the artfully rendered interior door handles, and a metal gas cap so weighty that those unaccustomed may fumble it during the first removal. There’s switchgear borrowed from Audi, such as the cruise-control stalk and the steering-wheel knobs, but at least it is slathered in enough chrome to set it apart. Although the Bentayga’s limits aren’t exceedingly high on the all-season tires our test car wore and the tire squealing starts early, it is ready to play near the cornering limit, where a dab of the brakes brings about a meaningful rear-end rotation. Plus, there’s a selfie app built into the Android tablets of the rear-seat entertainment system, which seems spectacularly on point.

What We Don’t Like: Why must the W-12 act so insecure, always trying to impress us with its mighty thrust? Initial throttle response is laggy when attempting to drive gently, and then the power comes barreling on far too strongly. There’s a sag during the 1-2 upshift, and then it delivers another unruly surge. Although complaining about price may seem a little too obvious, suffice it to say that the law of diminishing returns kicks in well before the Bentayga’s $235,525 opening price. Even with the extraordinary initial ask, Bentley charges extra for everything from interior contrast stitching ($1980)—the same on the steering wheel costs an added $210—to rear-seat entertainment ($7155), an 18-speaker Naim stereo upgrade ($4690), a seat that folds out of the cargo area ($3200), and the four-seat configuration ($11,015), not to mention a $7870 package of electronic safety aids such as lane-keeping assist, adaptive cruise control, night vision, and a head-up display. Even a heated steering wheel costs $455 extra. And at our $285,114 as-equipped price, the Bentayga lacks a power headrest adjustment, its lane-centering system annoyingly dithers the steering wheel, and the plasticky shift lever was creaking in our car. This Bentley also doesn’t ride as well or feel as structurally solid as the Q7, despite a high-tech adaptive suspension, and we prefer Audi’s MMI infotainment as well. Also, in terms of practicality, the Bentley struggles to measure up, holding only nine carry-on-size bags behind the second row, one less than the much smaller Ford Escape. Choose the four-seat option and the second row doesn’t fold, either. Those rear seats have a princely high seating height but not a lot of stretch-out room, some of which must be further sacrificed by sliding the seats forward if occupants want to enjoy much of their reclining capability.


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2018 Rolls-Royce Phantom VIII First Look | It’s all new, we swear!

At a well-decorated warehouse just off Hollywood’s Sunset Blvd., a gaggle of PR, design, operations, and executives from Rolls-Royce Motor Cars are stoking our excitement for the all-new, 2018 Rolls-Royce Phantom VIII. Along with the normal Rolls-Roycey words like “heritage,” “brand,” and “bespoke,” was a repeated phrase. A phrase that shouldn’t be necessary. A phrase eliciting a concept that should be obvious if true. The new car, it said, was “not an evolution” on the current Phantom. That, friends, is exciting to hear.

Don’t get us wrong, we like the train-engine-bolted-to-a-horseless-carriage look, and the beast’s scale and presence on the street. Trouble is, since the car first took to unsmoothing our air with its cathedral-facade front end in 2003, the looks have gotten a little, um, tired. Blame the mercilessness of time. Blame the success of the car, which means they’re on every street corner in west Los Angeles. Blame the “imitation-is-the-most-sincere-form-of-flattery” Chrysler 300. Blame the fact that this car’s magnetism vaults it into the public eye more frequently than a Kardashian. Whatever the cause, fact is, the Phantom needs a reboot. A subtle evolution a la the last Bentley Continental won’t do.

The lights are out. We’re led through a darkened antechamber into the full-dark of the warehouse. We can see the shape. It’s big and has the classic squared off D-pillar. The front, too, has the required grille bigness. It is enviously long.

Let’s pause. Here at Autoblog, we’re known for giving people advice. We take that responsibility seriously, because the results of our evaluations and expertise are often the reason someone has dropped thousands of dollars on a car they’re going to live with for many years. We try to keep it on cars and to not to get too preachy on the life coaching.

We’re going to break that convention now. Here’s a life pro tip: The more frequently that someone in a position of power repeats a claim, the more likely it is that that claim is false.


The lights click on. The men and women of Rolls-Royce, for whom this project is a true honor, clap in genuine appreciation and reverence for what they’ve been a part of. And the journalists in the room turn to each other and mouth, “Wait, is this the new one?”

If you’re casually familiar with the current-gen Phantom, based on seeing them pull into the club as you wait in line, then this new one will likely register as just another Phantom when it hits the streets early next year. Even if you’re used to seeing a Rolls every day, you’ll still have to squint a bit to see the changes.

Up front, the trademark grille is taller and wider. It was impressive before; it’s impressive now. As always, this faux radiator is topped with a Spirit of Ecstasy that can be silver, gold-plated, or illuminated polycarbonate. We’re sure if you asked nicely (with your Amex black card), it could make the winged woman out of whatever you wanted.


It’s not just the grille that’s taller, but the entire front of the vehicle is a bit more imposing than before. If you look at the old Phantom in profile, you’ll see that the nose seems to drop off aft of the front spindles. The new car fixes that. It’s a minor detail, but from the back of the trunk to the front bumper, the Phantom VIII has a continuous rise. The designers want you to envision a yacht powering through a harbor; we see a big car hunkered down on its 22-inch rear tires. Which, we think, is better than a boat.

Though Rolls-Royce doesn’t like to brag about this (it’s probably off-brand), this next-gen Phantom is actually, gasp, shorter than the car it replaces. It’s only a few inches trimmed off the front of the car, and you’d need a ruler to confirm it, but it’s true. Open the hood on the old Phantom and you’ll see a lot of excess space ahead of the naturally-aspirated 6.75-liter V12, and then even more space ahead of the radiator that even non-vehicle-engineers could see is superfluous. Rolls didn’t open the new, gorgeously domed hood – by far the best change to this new model – for us, which is a shame; we want to see how it got the same amount of cooling hardware in a smaller space along with the new turbos.


That’s right, the Rolls-Royce Phantom VIII doesn’t breathe on its own, but rather receives the assistance of a pair of turbochargers bolted to a Rolls-don’t-round-up 6.75-liter V12. Horsepower output of the new engine is up to 563 bhp from a slack 453, while torque is at 664 pound-feet, up from 531. Rolls claims a 0-60 time of 5.3 seconds for the normal, 227.2-inch-long car and 5.4 for the 235.8-inch extended wheelbase version.

Combine that new, efficient V12 with an aluminum-intensive construction that largely offsets weight gains from things like four power doors, the taller roof, more sound dampening, etc., and you wind up with a claimed 10 percent improvement in fuel economy. This allowed Rolls to drop in a smaller, 23.8 gallon (vs. 26.4) fuel tank while providing the same effective range. Surely that was amongst the complaints Rolls received from Saudi princes.

Truthfully, Middle-Eastern customers did have a complaint about the old Phantom: There wasn’t enough room to get in and out easily while wearing a keffiyeh (traditional headdress). That situation has been addressed, specifically for this complaint, by slightly stretching door apertures and adding more headroom. But don’t worry, the roof of the Phantom still has over 2.5 inches of sound-insulating foam in the headliner to keep out any noise.

While the rear seats, which Rolls calls the “suite,” are the money zone for a Phantom, nothing in the back of this new car feels particularly new. It’s all lovely, and the materials are impeccable, it’s just that the styling and features are exactly what we expect from the current car. Deep lambswool. Baby-soft leather. Real wood. Phantom customers, says Rolls-Royce CEO Torsten Müller-Ötvös, aren’t looking for hyper-connected mobile offices; they want to relax and get away. To this end, Rolls has succeeded.

For front-seat occupants, there are at least a couple of new tricks. The first is the new 12.3-inch TFT display digital instrument panel. We’re not surprised by this as parent company BMW has been rocking large digital IPs for a bit now and we’d seen spy photos that clearly showed this change. It works, but it’s far less refined than the physical sweepers in the Wraith and current Phantom.

While it makes financial and technical sense to use available parts, the digital IP is one of a few things inside of the Phantom that strike us as a sign of corporate compromise. Others include the lightweight plastic controls for the HVAC (vent registers are drool-worthy single pieces of milled metal), and the same iDrive controller and stalks you’ll find on a BMW.

Front-seat passengers are also treated to a new dash experience, The Gallery, which was inspired by Rolls’ customer’s fondness for putting high-end art in their boats and planes. Nestled into the dash immediately to the side of the instrument panel is, effectively, a shadowbox complete with glass front. This area is designed to be a showplace for Phantom owners to commission bespoke pieces of art that are impressive or important to them. On display were handmade porcelain flowers by Nymphenburg. To save you the Google search, Nymphenburg is a German porcelainery that has been making high-end porcelain art since the 18th century. To save you a second Google search, yes, we just made up the word porcelainery.

If handmade flowers straight out of your wealthy grandma’s cupboard don’t strike your fancy, Rolls also showed off a “gold-plated 3D-printed map of an owner’s DNA created by the enfant terrible of German product design Thorsten Franck.” We suggested that they cut a hole in the top of the dash and allowed owners to treat it like a piggy bank, stuffing it full of Gold Eagles, Krugerrands, Maple Leafs or small gold bars. We also suggested treating it like a an ant farm or as a place to keep specially trained, anti-theft bees. (Please provide your best suggestion for this space in the comments.)

Right there, smack in the middle of the door on the 2018 Phantom is a relic we just don’t see on cars in the US anymore: a door lock. It’s silver and round and obvious. Other cars, luxury or not, hide these behind block-off plates in the door handle. Rolls didn’t. It turns out that leaving the locks there and exposed was a deliberate, thoughtful decision. That Rolls Royce thought their customers would appreciate the mechanical, familiar look and access should the remote fob ever die.

The Rolls-Royce Phantom VIII is an anachronism. It’s a high-end record player in a world of streaming music services. But, thanks to the success of the Wrath and the Ghost and the certain success of the new Rolls-Royce Cullinen SUV, it exists. It exists to serve “Kings and Queens and titans of industry” as Rolls liked to repeat, for as long as those types still have the money and lust for wood and leather and quiet and, in this case, a whole lot of familiarity.


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Dubai showrooms to offer complete checks of new cars and registration

Dubai showrooms to offer complete checks of new cars and registration
New Roads and Transport Authority project to certify new cars expected to be active by October
Published: 16:08 August 3, 2017 Gulf News
Staff Report

Dubai: All car showrooms in Dubai will check the entire vehicle for faults before delivering the same to the customer as part of a new project by the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) to avert overlooked manufacturing defects, said officials on Thursday.
Under the project, a counter has to be set up at every showroom to provide technical checks of cars in addition to registration and exclusive plate numbers.

Sultan Al Marzouqi, director of Vehicles Licensing at the RTA, said the new service is expected to be in all Dubai showrooms by October.
“The project will provide perfect services inside the showrooms to register the cars. The project includes technical checks and selling exclusive plate numbers to buyers,” Al Marzouqi told a local Arabic paper.
He said the project will enhance the safety of vehicles as the RTA would coordinate with showrooms to conduct checks for manufacturing faults.

“In the recent years, we had witnessed manufacturing defects in some vehicles of major US and European companies. A few cars reached the country but the authority concerned took steps to check the safety of those vehicles,” Al Marzouqi added.
He said the project will make it easier to return the defective vehicles to the manufacturers before the buyers took possession of them.
“The project will have a clear system to coordinate with showrooms and we are cooperating with them to develop the necessary electronic system to implement the project and we expect to finish the project in the third quarter of the year,” he said.


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Why You Should Buy a Luxury Car

If you are someone who enjoys the finer things in life, then you have likely driven a luxury car a time or two. If you haven’t, then you are missing out. Driving in one of these cars is an experience unlike any other. These luxury cars have a lot to offer that ordinary cars do not. Here are some reasons why you should consider buying an Audi in Portland. If you would like to purchase a luxury car, click here.


Luxury cars often offer more safety features than a regular car would. These extra safety features help them score higher in crash test ratings. This means you are likely to walk away from a serious crash with fewer injuries than you would otherwise. This is reassuring to anyone, but especially to people who have children or often travel with other people in the car. There are times when these features may mean the difference between life and death. Some of these features include things like additional side and curtain airbags, stability and traction control, and anti-lock brakes.

Higher Resale Values

Another great thing about luxury cars is they have a great resale value. Many car values drop dramatically as soon as they are driven off the lot, but this decrease isn’t as extreme in luxury cars. If you are thinking about possibly reselling your Audi in Portland after you have driven it for a couple of years, then this is something that is good to know.


There’s no denying that luxury vehicles offer a higher level of comfort than other cars do. With their heated seats, dual climate control, and cushiony interior, they are something that can make your car much more enjoyable to ride in. This is great if you are taking your vehicle on a road trip or if you are someone who likes to go for a long drive every once in a while.


The technology that these luxury vehicles provide is state of the art. This can make for a much more enjoyable experience. The technology that is offered as a standard feature on regular cars has often already been in luxury vehicles for a few years. This helps make your ride much more comfortable.


Luxury vehicles are made to be safe, showy, and comfortable. Additionally, they offer a lot of horsepower so that you are able to get up and go much more quickly than with a standard vehicle. This gives your vehicle a lot more power than other cars have.

High Quality

Perhaps the best thing about luxury cars is that they offer a high level of quality. You don’t have to worry about the manufacturers skipping out on any feature, as that is why these vehicles are made in the first place. Your Audi in Portland is made with high quality items that should last you for a long time. This can help you save money and time on having your vehicle repaired.

As you can see, buying an Audi in Portland offers you many benefits. Whether you want it because of the safety, quality, or looks, it is something that you will likely be able to enjoy for years to come.

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