Browse Month

December 2020

2021 Ford Mustang

Ford surprised everyone with the announcement of the Mustang Mach-E. It is a departure from the Mustang that everyone was used to. The Mustang has always been a muscle car powered by large internal combustion engines. For 2021, Ford is continuing the legacy even if the Shelby GT350 will be discontinued. The 2021 Ford Mustang is still coming and there are a few things to talk about.

Exterior

From the outside, the 2021 model year Mustang does not change. It features the same long hood, gently curved towards the front bumper. The headlights and bumper remained unchanged as well as the large front grille.

What is new is the addition of a special Mach 1 edition. The 2021 Ford Mustang will be available in a limited edition that comes with a black stripe across the hood, rear, and sides.

Interior

The interior of the 2021 Ford Mustang should feel familiar. If you are one of the few that complained about the size of the steering wheel, you might not like it that the 2021 model has the same design as the previous model year. The steering wheel-mounted controls are all within reach and have a satisfying mechanical feel. There are no touch-sensitive buttons that the german automakers were so eager to adopt.

The instrument cluster is not available with digital dials. It is a single display that shows all the traditional information such as engine revs, speed, temperatures but they can be customized as they come in several different views.

Looking at the center console, the infotainment system remains placed in a lower position, beneath the center air vents. AC controls all have physical buttons right beneath the infotainment display and have a piano-like design.

Overall, the dashboard has a quality feel to it due to the soft materials used but it offers that specific Mustang sensation of being in a massive and powerful car.

Visibility is generally good except for the rear window. Due to the shape of the Mustang, it will be difficult to have some sort of practical visibility in the rear-view mirror, making it more of a second car rather than a daily driver.

Drivetrain and Engines

The limited-edition model, the Mach 1 will come with a 5.0 V8 engine and a power output of 480 HP. There will be an option to choose between a 6-speed manual or a 10-speed automatic transmission.

For the standard version, Ford will also be offering the option to get the 2.3-liter, 4 cylinder engine, and 310 HP. Also, for the EcoBoost engine, Ford will be offering the option to choose a manual or automatic transmission.

Safety and Tech

The new infotainment system used for the 2021 Ford Mustang is based on the same infotainment used in other Ford cars. It was revamped a couple of years ago to add more modern features such as improved responsiveness and better support for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. There will also be parking sensors, automatic emergency braking and a self-parking feature for the version with an automatic transmission. Additionally, there is the option to get 360 view cameras as an option.

Smart Car Technology

Smart Car Technology is looking for a new vision of vehicle use that will provide better safety and sustainability of urban life. This technology uses artificial intelligence applied to autonomous cars – smart cars.

Smart cars will be exclusively autonomous battery-powered vehicles, and that the number of traffic accidents will significantly reduce. The development of the mobile service will be maintained by multimedia centers that will be interactive, with powerful virtual assistants far more capable than today. It expects that the control of the vehicle will be keyless, as most of these roles will take over by a voice assistant.

An autonomous car is a self-driving car under computer control and on artificial intelligence. Such cars combine sensors and software for control and management.

Autonomous driving technology tests are being carried out on the roads of large urban cities. According to the Global automotive supplier study highlights, the highest growth rate in the use of autonomous vehicles is expected in North America, followed by China and Europe. The scenario shows the highest growth rate in the period 2025 -2030.

The evolution of Smart Car Technology leads to the development of Automated Driving Systems.

Smart cars are becoming a reality.

The development of Smart Car Technology includes:

  • electronic fuel injection,
  • power distribution control for each wheel,
  • computer diagnostics,
  • advanced air-bag systems and satellite navigation,
  • smart traffic, jam assist,
  • interactive voice recognition,
  • night view,
  • driver state monitoring,
  • remote parking assist system,
  • smart blind spot detection,
  • motion recognition
  • message center,
  • telephony possibilities, and much more.

Car design

Mini vehicles – will be primarily used in cities and suburbs. Such vehicles provide excellent maneuverability, range 15-20 km, capacity 1-2 passengers. These are rental (sharing) vehicles, highly reliable and not expensive to procure and maintain.

Medium cars – will also be used primarily in cities and suburbs. Such vehicles provide greater comfort, offering more space to transport 4+ passengers. These are also rental vehicles.

Personalized vehicles – have no restrictions, neither in range, nor comfort, nor shape (sedan, hatchback, crossover, SUV). Given that the driver is not focused on driving, the interior design and media-entertainment industry will rethink what autonomous vehicle passengers do when on the road. In practice, it will show whether passengers have more time for work and leisure. In both cases, the visual message of the exterior and interior must, therefore, intelligently designed, creating the car as a marketable product.

Smart Cars in the future

The future of the car may look like this: when a passenger/driver enters, a task is issued by voice, for example, going to work. By interacting, the robot will offer the passenger a route concerning traffic. During the ride, the traveling robot will suggest other media services, given the personalization performed, and include real-time sensitive analysis of passengers using bio-signal recognition. Upon the car at the destination, the vehicle will head to the nearest charging station, after which it will park and wait for the order to return for the passenger and drive to the desired position.

The development of technology enables many changes and improvements in every type of industry, and the automotive industry is not far behind. That is why car companies, in cooperation with the main technology giants, are working to improve safety and comfort.

AWD Vehicles Versus 4WD… Do You Know the Difference?

AWD Vehicles Versus 4WD

In many modern cars, the difference between AWD and 4WD can be very confusing. As new technologies are implemented the line that differentiates the two becomes increasingly shallow. Having to choose between AWD vehicles versus 4WD starts with understanding how each system work.

AWD cars

Traditionally, AWD has 3 differentials. They have a differential for the front wheels, one for the rear wheels, and a central differential that distributes the torque to the front and rear axle. The differentials ensure that torque is distributed evenly between the wheels while allowing them to have different rotational speeds. All four wheels spin with the same force but can have different speeds.

In real-life scenarios, an AWD system can have one or more wheels slipping while the others receive the same torque. For regular driving, this system works quite well as it is quite rare to find yourself stranded on public roads. What it does is to ensure traction and stability on public roads.

4WD cars

4WD systems have a similar setup. When comparing AWD vehicles versus 4WD, you can notice that 4WD uses a central transfer case instead of a differential. The transfer case allows for the torque to be distributed unevenly, depending on where it may be needed the most. This means that the front axle may get more torque than the rear axle or the other way around depending on the conditions.

This type of setup makes 4WD cars more practical for off-roading. If for example, your front axle is slipping, the system can detect this event by monitoring the rotational speed of the wheels. If the front wheels spin more than the rear wheels, it indicates that the car may require more torque on the rear axle to get the car out of a difficult situation. The transfer case assists by sending more torque to the rear axle.

Which one is better?

The debate around AWD vehicles versus 4WD vehicles revolves around use case scenarios. AWD vehicles usually have the option to send all the torque only to the front axle. This means better fuel economy. 4WD vehicles manage torque distribution better across the front and rear axles which makes them better suited for off-road conditions.

Understanding how these systems work can help you determine which one is better for your situation. Both systems are good at what they do for the type of driving situations they were designed. In modern days, AWD systems are more common. They are not necessarily cheaper, but they are more commonly used since most people rarely drive in off-road conditions.

4WD systems tend to be more common in large cars with high ground clearance such as trucks. As the market demand for small SUVs and crossovers increased over the past decade, AWD is more common amongst vehicles by sheer sales volumes. Tucks, pick-up trucks, and dedicated off-road vehicles sell in smaller numbers than SUVs and crossovers.

In the end, AWD vehicles versus 4WD vehicles is not a fair comparison. AWD cars will always perform better on public roads while 4WD vehicles will be better for off-roading. Reversing their roles will not provide any kind of advantage.

2021 Honda CRV AWD

The 2021 model year for the Honda CR-V does not bring significant changes. Customers should expect more of the same. Overall, the 2021 Honda CRV AWD version will be the same as the 2020 model year when the Japanese manufacturer introduced an exterior facelift.

Engine and Transmission

For the AWD model, Honda is using their VTi-S system that makes use of a 1.5-liter turbo petrol engine that delivers 189 HP or 140 kW. Despite have reasonable power, the CR-V is a heavy vehicle and it does not feel like a sporty drive in any shape or form. It is suitable as a daily driver and family car especially with the CVT automatic transmission that comes as a standard for AWD models. A reasonably specced 2021 Honda CRV AWD model should weigh about 3500 lb which is not a lot. The power to weight ratio is decent but the AWD system makes it accelerate slower than what most would expect if it were to be compared to an FWD version having the same 140 kW transmission.

Interior

The interior of the Honda CR-V has been refined starting with the 2020 model year. Unlike most European manufacturers, the infotainment system is properly integrated into the central console and it does not stick out, obstructing a portion of the windshield. It has a lower position that allows for two air vents to be placed right above it. The driver instrument cluster is now available with digital gauges that are split amongst 3 small screens instead of using a single large screen like most german manufacturers like to use.

What is important to note that Honda retained physical buttons for the AC system, seats, and volume. Most users complain about manufacturers using touch-sensitive buttons or completely removing buttons. For the 2021 Honda CRV AWD, the Japanese automaker decided to still use physical buttons for their practicality and tactile sensation that simply makes them more practical.

The gear selector is placed right beneath the infotainment system but still has that slightly elevated position as in the 2020 model. Being an automatic, having the gear selector so elevated does not do much in terms of practicality but it leaves the storage area around the armrest more open and easier to use.

As for the overall build and construction of the interior, the 2020 Honda CR-V AWD model is no different than any other Honda. It uses soft-touch materials for most surfaces that you would touch often and a leather steering wheel. There are hard plastics used on lower areas such as the door panels but those surfaces are not meant to be touched constantly while driving.

Tech

As far as tech goes, the CR-V offers everything one would expect from a 2021 car. It has auto-emergency braking, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, 360 cameras, parking sensors, and all the bells and whistles that enabled it to get a five-star safety score in the ANCAP safety rating. The ones that are not used to driving larger cars such as the CR-V should rest assured as the 2021 Honda CRV AWD model comes with self-parking as standard.