Hyundai, Motional robotaxi sports more than 30 sensors for 2023 debut

Hyundai Motor Group has unveiled the Level 4 robotaxi it developed with Motional to start transporting passengers in 2023, a high-tech version of its Ioniq 5 electric vehicle with more than 30 sensors to give a 360-degree, high-resolution view of the vehicle’s surroundings.

In a joint statement, Hyundai Motor Group and Motional on Tuesday said the all-electric crossover would begin public service in two years through a partnership with ride-hailing giant Lyft. The robotaxi will be Motional’s first commercial vehicle and is based on the Hyundai Ioniq 5 that debuted this year on the Hyundai Motor Group’s new Electric-Global Modular Platform.The Ioniq 5 robotaxi makes its public debut this month at IAA Mobility in Munich.

The electric crossover telegraphs its self-driving abilities with a range of sensors bolted to the vehicle’s exterior. Some are behind the front wheel arch where a brake vent might be. Others are situated on the roof and look like a luggage rack with a police strobe on top.

The assemblage of more than 30 sensors includes cameras, radars and lidar, delivering a round-view, high-resolution, ultra-long-range view for safe autonomous driving, the companies said.

Meanwhile, the interior is designed to be passenger-focused for ride-hailing customers.

“The vehicle’s sensor suite is prominently displayed across the exterior, easily distinguishing the robotaxi from human-piloted vehicles,” the companies said in a joint statement. “The resulting passenger experience will set a new standard for driverless ride-hailing.”

To enhance safety, the robotaxi’s self-driving system was developed with redundancies across every function, including the navigation, steering, braking and power.

Motional said it will also be able to provide remote vehicle assistance to the Ioniq 5 robotaxis should they encounter any unforeseen obstacles, such as road construction or flooding. In such instances, a remote operator can connect to the vehicle and redirect it.

Hyundai Motor Group and Boston-based Motional announced last December they would partner to deploy fully driverless vehicles through Lyft’s platform in select markets.

Motional was formed in March 2020 as a $4 billion joint venture between the South Korean auto manufacturer and the new mobility technology specialist Aptiv. Their robotaxi service aims to kick off in 2023 on the Lyft network in multiple U.S. markets, the companies said.

The Ioniq 5 robotaxi will have SAE Level 4 autonomous capabilities. SAE International has six levels of automation — from 0, meaning no automated controls, to 5, for full autonomy.

The New 2021 Ford F-150 Raptor Is Great — But It’s No TRX

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New 2021 Ford F-150 Raptor review! The new 2021 Ford F-150 Raptor is here, and it’s very cool — and very exciting. It’s incredibly capable, fast, and thrilling — and it still looks cool… but it’s no Ram TRX. Today I’m reviewing the 2021 Raptor and I’ll show you the quirks and features of this cool truck. I’m also going to drive the new Raptor and show you what it’s like on the road.

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Racing legend Stirling Moss’s 1966 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 heads to auction

Racing legend Stirling Moss’s 1966 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 heads to auction

British racing legend Sir Stirling Moss is considered to be the greatest driver not to win the Formula 1 world championship. He won 212 races during his amazing career, including 16 F1 Grands Prix, the Mille Miglia 1,000-mile race across Italy in 1955, and the 1954 12 Hours of Sebring.

He retired from racing in 1962 after a devastating crash at Goodwood, but to no ones’ surprise, he never fully walked away from the sport – becoming a very active participant in vintage racing.

Barrett-Jackson, at its inaugural Houston auction September 16-18, will be auctioning Moss’s 1966 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350, nicknamed “The Moss Car,” after being owned and raced by the renowned driver from 1992-1999.

“From Formula One Grands Prix to the Mille Miglia, Moss was one of the best, celebrating hundreds of victories during his successful racing career,” Craig Jackson, chairman and chief executive officer of Barrett-Jackson, is quoted in the auction’s press release. “Sadly, we lost Moss last year, but the spirit of this International Motorsports Hall of Famer lives on in the Shelby that he lived. This is a truly rare chance to own a race car owned and piloted by one of the world’s most celebrated racers.”

1966 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 owned by Stirling Moss | Barrett-Jackson Photos

1966 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 owned by Stirling Moss | Barrett-Jackson Photos

In its early life, Moss’s Shelby GT350 was converted to R specifications by previous owner Chris Liebenberg. Today, the car remains in competition configuration, powered by a 289cid V8 mated to a 4-speed transmission and equipped with period racing seats.

The body wears its original paint and No. 7 roundels and ‘Driver Stirling Moss’ script on the doors.

1966 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 owned by Stirling Moss | Barrett-Jackson Photos

1966 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 owned by Stirling Moss | Barrett-Jackson Photos

1966 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 owned by Stirling Moss | Barrett-Jackson Photos

1966 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 owned by Stirling Moss | Barrett-Jackson Photos

1966 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 owned by Stirling Moss | Barrett-Jackson Photos

1966 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 owned by Stirling Moss | Barrett-Jackson Photos

Quickly after purchasing the car in 1992, Moss raced it at the Targa Tasmania with his wife, Susie, in the passenger seat. They won in their class, the Classic Division B7 for Touring and GT cars over 4000cc.

He went on to race the Shelby GT350 in competitions across Europe, including at Silverstone in 1995 and 1996.

“Moss had only high praise for his Shelby GT350,” Steve Davis, president of Barrett-Jackson, notes. “He’s on record stating it was his favorite for historic racing, and there is no doubt Moss’ Shelby GT350 was in many incredible vintage races, piloted by one of the greatest racers of all time. We are so proud to give our bidders in Houston a chance to win a historic car with legendary pedigree such as this one.”

1966 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 owned by Stirling Moss | Barrett-Jackson Photos

1966 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 owned by Stirling Moss | Barrett-Jackson Photos

In 2007, Carroll Shelby drove Moss’s GT350 onto the stage at Houston’s Keels & Wheels Concours d’Elegance event and proclaimed this car will forever be known as ‘The Moss Car.”

You can find Moss’s signature inside of the trunk.

1966 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 owned by Stirling Moss | Barrett-Jackson Photos

1966 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 owned by Stirling Moss | Barrett-Jackson Photos

The winning bidder will receive a substantial amount of documentation, including photos from Moss’s personal files, photos from Keels & Wheels event, and a video of Moss talking about the car.

For more information about Moss’s 1966 Shelby GT350 and Barrett-Jackson’s Houston’s auction, visit the auction’s website.

This article, written by Racheal Colbert, was originally published on ClassicCars.com, an editorial partner of Motor Authority.

Lithia acquires Canada’s Pfaff Automotive dealership group

Lithia Motors Inc., in another transaction supporting its aggressive expansion plan, said Tuesday it acquired Canadian dealership group Pfaff Automotive Partners.

The announcement confirms the imminent deal first reported by Automotive News in July.

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed, but a Pfaff spokesman said the Canadian group retains an undisclosed equity stake in the operation.

It marks Lithia’s first international acquisition and moves the second-largest U.S. dealership group toward its goal of 500 domestic locations. Lithia said the acquisition will bring its expected 2021 annualized revenue from acquisitions to $5.9 billion. The Canadian dealerships are expected to generate more than $1 billion in those annualized revenues for Lithia, headquartered in Medford, Ore. The deal was financed with “existing on-balance sheet capacity,” Lithia said.

Pfaff, headquartered in Toronto, operates 16 dealerships across Canada — 11 of them in the Toronto area, the largest market in the country. It also has stores in Vancouver and Calgary.

“Canada has been our top target for growth outside of the United States with its similar business practices and a market opportunity of five million new and used cars sold annually,” Lithia CEO Bryan DeBoer said in a statement. “Beyond its size, Pfaff has an excellent management team, and its locations provide an ideal hub for further expansion.”

DeBoer praised Pfaff’s best-price first approach and captive in-house leasing option, saying Pfaff “perfectly aligns with our technology-enabled online offerings.”

The acquisition of Pfaff makes Lithia the second publicly traded dealership group operating in the Canadian market. AutoCanada, based in Edmonton, Alta., was the sole public dealership group in Canada.

The Pfaff brand will remain, and Chris Pfaff, whose father Hans founded the company in 1964, will continue to serve as president and CEO. A Pfaff spokesman said the entire Pfaff management team will stay on board to run the brand.

The deal also means Lithia will bring its Driveway omnichannel digital retailing platform north of the border.

DeBoer previously said that early learnings from Driveway, rolled out one year ago, demonstrate the potential for the platform to dominate both “domestically and internationally.” 

Omnichannel refers to technology and processes aimed at providing a seamless buying experience for consumers whether they shop online, in-store or both.

Pfaff CEO Chris Pfaff said in a statement there currently isn’t a “nation-wide, e-commerce player in Canada.”

“This partnership is borne out of a relationship that spans five years, and we are confident that the cultural alignment between our organizations makes this the perfect launch point for Lithia and Driveway in Canada,” Pfaff said.

With a market cap of $11.55 billion — and 263 dealerships in its portfolio prior to the Pfaff deal, according to the company’s website — Lithia has greater access to capital for expansion than every other dealership group in Canada by a wide margin.

Lithia ranked No. 3 on Automotive News’ most recent list of the top 150 dealership groups based in the U.S., with retail sales of 171,168 new vehicles in 2020. But with its April acquisition of 34 stores from Michigan’s Suburban Collection, Lithia passed Penske to become the country’s second-largest dealership group.

2022 Audi TT

What kind of car is the 2022 Audi TT? What does it compare to?

The TT coupe and roadster pair up sports-car performance with all-wheel drive. There aren’t many cars like it, but some rivals include the Porsche 718, BMW Z4, and Toyota Supra.

Is the 2022 Audi TT a good car?

Review continues below

An entertaining driver’s car with not much room for anyone else, the TT earns a TCC Rating of 5.8 out of 10. (Read more about how we rate cars.)

What’s new for the 2022 Audi TT?

Audi hasn’t said whether the 394-hp turbo-5 TT RS will return, but it has added a bronze trim package to the existing lineup of TT roadster and TT/TTS coupes.

The TT carries over into what may be its final model year with a sleek, low-slung design that carries hints of its former Art Deco glory. The snug, beautifully trimmed cockpit offers a digital flourish with gauges that nestle in a dash trimmed in leather and studded by round vents. 

The TT’s driver gets nearly all the attention. The car’s front seats have ample space and swell support, with nappa leather upholstery and heating. The back seats may as well be deleted; they are, on the roadster. The trunk’s small. Plan ahead, and travel lightly.

The TT has its origins in the former front-drive VW Golf architecture, and it drives with the brio of the most advanced GTIs and Golf Rs, thanks to a 228-hp turbo-4 and standard all-wheel drive. Power rises to 288 hp on the TTS, which can scoot to 60 mph in an authoritative 4.4 seconds, thanks to quick shifts from its 7-speed dual-clutch transmission. A very firm ride softens in the TTS with its magnetic dampers, but that doesn’t detract from the fun: the TT in any guise is compact and flingable, and can be aimed and fired through corners at will. With no safety ratings or automatic emergency braking, where and how that’s done is up to your discretion. 

How much does the 2022 Audi TT cost?

Base coupes cost $50,845; the TT roadster starts at $54,945 and adds a power-operated top to features that include heated nappa leather sport seats, a digital instrument cluster, and Bang & Olufsen audio. The TTS tops $60,000.

Where is the 2022 Audi TT made?

It’s assembled in Hungary.