Ford of Europe makes $1bn (£700m) in Europe (EU)

Ford of Europe has reported a pre-tax profit of just over $1bn (£700m) for 2008.

Profits for the first half of the year soared to $1.37bn (£950m) but declined in the second half of the year, with the company recording a $261m (£182m) loss. Its record profit in Europe, up from $997m (approx. £700m) in 2007, is in stark contrast with Ford’s global loss for the fourth quarter of 2008. The company lost $5.9bn (£4.1bn) in the last quarter of 2008, and a total of $14.6bn (£10bn) for the whole year.

Ford now intends to draw on $10bn (£7bn) of additional credit, which is expected to reach the company by Tuesday 2nd February.

'09 Renault Clio uncovered

An amateur spy photographer spied the facelift Clio III free of disguising in a public car park with its bonnet wide open. Spy pictures of the revised Clio date back to September 2007 where the Clio's engineers were testing the newcomer in Spain and Italy.

New headlights, grille, intake, and front bumper assist in giving the car a more aggressive look. Body-coloured side mouldings gives the car a more appealing look, but this is not just an exterior redesign. The revised Clio is also expected to have higher quality materials inside with special attention being paid to the upholstery.

Expect to see the facelifted Renault Clio and the Clio Sport Tourer, at the Geneva motorshow for its debut. UK sales start in June, Clio Sports Tourer in October and Clio Renaultsport in December.

Via > Renault Clio III Phase 2 spied

Volvo XC60 pricing announced (U.S)

3 weeks ago, it was announced that the 2010 Volvo XC60 will start from under $40,000. Today, Volvo Cars of North America has revealed prices for the compact XC60 SUV. Starting from $37,200, the vehicle comes with a 3.0 litre turbocharged petrol T6 engine with AWD. It delivers 281bhp and maximum torque of 295 lb.-ft.

A host of features are included in the base price, such as a panoramic roof (limited time only), heated front and rear seats, HD Radio technology with USB and AUX ports, Bluetooth connectivity, leather seats and a SIRIUS satellite radio with a six month complimentary subscription.

For extra cash buyers can choose from a host of options that comprise a DVD-based navigation system with an integrated rear-view camera, a lane departure warning system and Volvo's Blind Spot Information System (BLIS) amongst others.

Press Release:

Anticipation is growing as Volvo Cars of North America, LLC, (VCNA) today announced pricing of the exciting new 2010 Volvo XC60 T6 AWD small premium utility. With a starting price of just $37,200* for the well-equipped XC60, buyers will have it all: Class-leading safety, stunning design and unrivaled driving dynamics. The new Volvo XC60 goes on sale this March.

The XC60 is Volvo's entry into the growing small premium utility segment. Features such as leather seating surfaces with a power driver's seat, SIRIUS satellite radio (with complimentary six-month subscription), hands-free Bluetooth connectivity, HD Radio technology with USB and AUX ports are all standard. As a special introductory offer, the unique Panorama moonroof will be offered at no charge. Customers may also opt for Volvo's DVD-based navigation system with integrated back-up camera and two new colors: Lime Grass Green or Terra Bronze.

Continuing Volvo's quest as a pioneer and leader in vehicle safety systems, the XC60 introduces a new world's first -- City Safety -- as standard equipment. City Safety is a driver-support system aimed at preventing or mitigating collisions occurring at speeds of 19 mph or less.

The new Volvo XC60 is the first production expression of Volvo's new design DNA. As a crossover, it artfully blends a dynamic mix of two car styles. Down below, the unmistakable, immensely capable XC pumps up its muscles creating a strong athletic body that is mated with high ground clearance and large wheels. Up top the flowing lines create the sporty charisma of a coupe.

The 3.0 litre turbocharged T6 engine is based on Volvo's naturally aspirated 3.2 litre inline all-aluminum six-cylinder that was introduced in the Volvo S80 in 2008. The T6 delivers 281 horsepower with torque of no less than 295 lb.-ft., combining for best-in-class performance. Maximum torque is available from just 1,500 rpm and remains on tap throughout the rev range. The result is swift acceleration and impressive passing performance. Volvo's all-wheel-drive system with Instant Traction is standard in the new XC60.

The XC60 is also included in Volvo's recently announced Complimentary Factory Scheduled Maintenance program, which covers the first three years or 36,000 miles (whichever comes first). Complimentary Factory Scheduled Maintenance helps reduce the cost of ownership by providing customers the first four maintenance visits to their Volvo retailer as complimentary. A wide range of services are covered by the program, including oil and filter changes, cabin filter replacement, complete fluid level top-offs and a check of the vehicle's on-board diagnostic system.

VCNA, part of Volvo Car Corporation in Gothenburg, Sweden, provides marketing, sales, parts, service, technology and training support to Volvo automobile retailers in the United States, and oversees Volvo operations in Canada, Mexico and Puerto Rico.

The 2009 Volvo Cars model lineup includes the award-winning S40 and its wagon counterpart the V50; the award-winning XC90; the sporty S60 sedan; the flagship S80 luxury sedan; versatile V70 wagon and rugged XC70 (Cross Country); the stunning C70 retractable hardtop convertible and the dynamic C30.

Hot Insignia caught at official Opel event

The Vauxhall/Opel Insignia has recently gone on sale across Europe with a sports variant due this year. Prototypes of the Insignia VXR/OPC have been lapping around Germany heavily disguised but a crafty photographer managed to leaked a pre-production ready model onto the net.

This prototype's model, a saloon rather than a hatchback, shows the vertical front air intakes that were a striking feature of the Opel GTC Concept coupé that previewed the Insignia's design language at the 2007 Geneva motorshow.

Running OPC Prototypes have lapped the Nürburgring in a little over 8 minutes, according to Opel managing director and engineering guru Hans Demant. With its Haldex 4WD and 255/35 R20 tyres, it's said to be very grippy, very stable and very benign in its handling. Wheels have five concave spokes, are painted in dark metallic grey and have polished rims and spoke outlines.

Power is not yet disclosed but the twin-turbo V6 is thought to produce around 320bhp. Expect to see this styling model at the Geneva show in March, with the production version making its debut at the Frankfurt show in September, if not before. A wagon variant is also expected.

Via > Vauxhall Insignia VXR

Jeep "WL" captured in U.S

These are the first ever spy photos of the upcoming Jeep Grand Cherokee, undergoing cold-weather testing in the U.S. The newcomer is due sometime next year. Codenamed "WL", the Grand Cherokee will sit on an all-new platform which will be shared with several other vehicles including the next-generation Dodge Durango and the next-generation Mercedes M-Class, unlike the Tailhawk concept which underpinned the Jeep Wrangler. The mule appears to be much curvier (thanks to the Jeep Trailhawk concept which was unveiled at the 2007 North American International Auto Show) all round compared to the outgoing model and looks shorter too. The interior will receive a huge revamp with upright air vents and curved dashboard to make it more European focused.

A long wheelbase '10 G.Cherokee is set to replace the slow-selling Commander SUV.

Chrysler’s new V6 Phoenix engine (reported in the last article) will be available in the Grand Cherokee in 3.3 litre and 3.6 litre displacements. A 4.7 litre V8 and 5.7 litre HEMI are likely as well the GM/Chrysler/BMW hybrid powertrain, used in the shortlived Chrysler Aspen & Dodge Durango Hybrids. The 3.0 CRD, sourced from Mercedes is expected to remain for the European market.

Watch for production of this new Jeep to start at the Jefferson North Assembly Plant in Detroit in January 2010.

40 years since the Honda Accord arrived (AU)

To celebrate 40 years of the Honda Accord in Australia, Honda has released a limited edition 2.4 litre 4 cylinder i-VTEC petrol engine which produces 178bhp and 222Nm with a 5-speed automatic transmission.

Fog lights, rear parking sensors, Bluetooth, floor mats, illuminated door sill and 40th Anniversary badging are all included in this special edition.

The Accord has sold over 16 million units since 1976 in 160 countries and remains one of Honda’s most endearing and successful models for more than 30 years.

Press Release:

The limited edition four cylinder Accord showcases Honda’s commitment to producing passenger cars that feature the latest in technology and design quality.

The Accord V6 was recently named Drive’s 2008 Car of the Year and Large Car of the Year.

The original Accord was the first Japanese car to feature air conditioning, a digital clock, power steering, cloth seats, a tachometer, intermittent wipers and an AM/FM radio as standard. During its first year in Australia, the Honda Accord won ‘Wheels Car of the Year’, the first Japanese car to win the coveted award.

The Honda Accord has continued to receive accolades including Drive Car of the Year 2008 for the V6. In fact, the Accord remains the most highly decorated car in Honda’s history.

The limited edition Honda Accord is packed with extra features including fog lights, rear parking sensors, Bluetooth, floor mats, illuminated door sill garnishes and 40th Anniversary badging.
Honda Australia’s Senior Director, Mr. Lindsay Smalley, is proud of the Accord’s success in Australia.

“The Accord was one of the first models Honda introduced to Australia 40 years ago and has been a popular choice ever since. The name ‘Accord’ was chosen to symbolise Honda’s efforts to achieve an accord between people, society and motor vehicles through advanced technology.

“The Accord was ahead of its time when the first model was released and it continues to evolve to this day. Last year we launched the 8th generation Accord, offering buyers the choice of either a 2.4 litre four cylinder engine or a powerful 3.5 litre V6 featuring revolutionary Variable Cylinder Management (VCM) technology that seamlessly switches between six, four and even three cylinders as required,” Mr. Smalley said.

The Accord has sold over 16 million units since 1976 in 160 countries and remains one of Honda’s most endearing and successful models for more than 30 years.

The 40th Anniversary Limited Edition Accord has a 2.4 litre four cylinder i-VTEC engine which produces 133kW and 222Nm with a 5-speed automatic transmission as standard.

Its impressive performance is matched by equally impressive fuel consumption – just 8.8 litres/100km – and very low emissions.

And even more impressive is the price - A$31,440 plus on road costs. For the month of January, customers will also receive free registration and CTP insurance, a 5 year warranty and free 5 year 24hr Premium Roadside Assist.

Renault Megane sedan spied in Sweden

Alongside the Megane GrandTour, Renault engineers are hard at work testing the forthcoming Megane Sports Saloon in Northern Sweden.

Like the regular Megane, the new sedan will be lighter and more fuel efficient than the outgoing model. Both petrol and diesel engines will be taken from the recently launched Megane.

Rivalling the Ford Focus, Volkswagen Jetta, Nissan Tiida, Opel Astra, Chevrolet Cruze and Citroen C-Triomphe, the new Megane sedan is likely to debut at October's Paris motorshow. After this model is launched in early 2010, the coupe-cabriolet and a possible crossover will arrive.

Via > Renault Megane spied winter testing & > 2010 Renault Megane sedan

sachin tendulkar pictures

Sachin ramesh tendulkar is one of the all time great players in the history of cricket. He was born on 24-04-1973. He has created numerous number records in the game of cricket.

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