Our reporters empty their notebooks to round up this week's gossip from across the automotive industry
2 May 2018

This week's snippets of automotive news include news on Citroen's Airbump, inductive charging, Skoda Kodiaq vRS and robotaxis.

Citroen Airbump:

Citroen's Airbumps remain a part of the car maker’s designs but it will not be tied to them, said product boss Xavier Peugeot. He added: “As a brand, we will differentiate the cars [stylistically]. Customer research shows C3s are favoured with Airbumps, rather than without. But we want to get the balance right. The Airbump design puts some people off. And some people love it.”

Inductive charging: 

Inductive charging will replace dragging wires and cables around with a premium experience, says Bentley design chief Stefan Sielaff. In the meantime, the firm will be designing its own wall-box charger for its Bentayga plug-in hybrid.

Skoda Kodiaq:

We will see the Skoda Kodiaq vRS later this year – but, beyond that, CEO Bernhard Maier remains coy about its performance arm. Asked about his plans for the hot sub-brand, which currently has only the Octavia vRS on sale, he said: “vRS has been successful for a number of years in some markets.

That is why we are thinking about it for other models as well. We have our biggest campaign yet ahead of us by 2020. We have to filter out which ideas customers want most and which help the brand best.”

Robotaxis:

Mercedes-Benz is aiming to produce the world’s first commercially available robotaxis in 2021. Boss of parent company Daimler, Dieter Zetsche, said: “We are working on fleets of level five autonomous cars at the moment. The whole industry is talking about robotaxis.”

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Comments
2

3 May 2018

Skoda missed a trick by releasing a new car with the Rapid name, but not a rapid Rapid.

Some private owners have lowered them slightly and it really transforms the look of the car.

3 May 2018

Take a taxi ride from Lisbon Oriente Railway station to the airport and you will soon realise that the 10-minutes ride is simply NOT achievable in a robot car unless you want to die young!

So many random factors from idiots cutting up to suicidal cyclists and pedestrians render the ride unpredictable at best, downright dangerous the rest of the time...

I use Lisbon as an example simply because it is a city where I ride taxis as often as I need to fly; I have no doubt that in many other cities, the situation will be similar! Ceratinly, a rush-hour ride to LAX was also quite something.

A robocab? No thank you, I'll take my chances witha guy who earns a living from getting home unharmed each night! Or I'll use the Tube...

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Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

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