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Audi sales soar worldwide

The 2016 Audi Q2

AUDI has announced a new record year for sales in 2016 with 1,871,350 models sold since January, representing an increase of 3.8% on 2015.

In all five of its largest individual markets [Europe (+7.6%), in North America (+5.3%) with further growth in the plateaued U.S. market (+4%) and Asia-Pacific (+0.5%)], 2016 has recorded more cars sold than ever before.

Worldwide, demand increased for the seventh year in a row since 2009, with Audi almost doubling its market success over this period. Audi sales have also increased in Ireland, with over 6,000 registrations recorded in 2016.

Commenting on Ireland’s performance, Henning Dohrn, Managing Director of Audi Ireland said: ‘We are very happy to be the number one premium car brand in Ireland, the basis for this success is due to our loyal customer base, committed dealer network, award winning products and our continuous technological innovation.

“We are optimistic about the year ahead, particularly with the introduction of new models such as the Audi A5 Sportback, Q2 and Q5 to the Irish market; these models clearly demonstrate our commitment to our brand claim ‘Vorsprung Durch Technik’.

In addition to our investment in the product range, our dealer partners are investing in the dealer network, which will see the opening of three new Audi dealerships across the country later on in the year."

Demand rose sharply in Europe where two important new models, the Audi Q2 and the Audi A5, were launched only recently. The sustained high level of demand for the new Audi A4 had an equally positive effect on the delivery results. Despite political and economic uncertainties throughout Europe, Audi A4 sales grew by 7.6 percent to around 337,550 units sold, in comparison with 2015.

Audi also performed well in Europe with its high-performance portfolio from Audi Sport, most notably with the Audi R8 supercar.

In 2016, deliveries of the Audi R8 increased by 31.8 percent to around 2,890 units.

Across the entire portfolio, the overall number of customers in Europe who received keys for their new Audi increased by 7.6 percent in 2016 to around 860,600 cars.

Audi also posted further growth in North America in 2016: 4 per cent, with overall deliveries totalling 210,213 units in the US market, 4 percent more than in 2015.

The Audi Q7 plays an important role in this respect, with the United States constituting its most important sales market worldwide.

More than one in four customers of the SUV comes from the United States. Since the new generation was introduced in January, US deliveries of the Q7 increased by a substantial double-digit figure every month. The Q7 has grown by around 60.9 percent to 30,563 units in the market in 2016. Worldwide, around 102,200 customers decided to buy the model this year, up 43.6 percent.

In China, Audi increased its overall sales for 2016 by 3.6 percent to 591,554 deliveries, maintaining its clear lead in the Chinese premium car market. The demand for the Audi Q3 increased year-on-year by 27.6 percent.

Meanwhile, the delivery statistics for the A3 show an increase of 29.7 per cent to 89,213 units.

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New BMW 5 Series Touring has more space

New 5 estate arrives this summer, with prices from \u20AC56,590.

Hot on the heels of the new 5 Series Saloon, the new BMW 5 Series Touring marks its world premiere at the Geneva Motor Show in March. Four engines will be available from launch in June, while the BMW xDrive intelligent all-wheel-drive system will be fitted in two models. Additional rear-wheel drive and all-wheel drive models will join the line-up later.

The new 5 Series Touring is 36mm longer than the outgoing model (at 4,943mm), eight millimetres wider (1,868mm) and 10mm taller (1,498mm). The wheelbase has been extended by seven millimetres to 2,975mm.

It will be powered by new-generation EfficientDynamics engines, equipped with BMW TwinPower Turbo technology. The 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol in the 530i Touring delivers 252hp (up 7hp on its predecessor), peak torque of 350Nm at just 1,450rpm, and a zero to 100km/h time of 6.5 seconds. Combined fuel consumption of 46.3mpg and CO2 emissions of 139g/km are an improvement of almost ten per cent over the outgoing model.

The 3.0-litre six-cylinder in-line petrol engine powering the BMW 540i xDrive develops 340hp, up 34hp on its predecessor. Peak torque, which has increased by 50Nm to 450Nm and it completes the zero to 100km/h sprint in just 5.1 seconds.

Again, fuel consumption and CO2 emissions are almost ten per cent better than on the outgoing model, at 37.6mpg and 172g/km.

The petrol engines of the BMW 530i Touring and BMW 540i xDrive Touring come with twin-scroll turbochargers, High Precision Injection direct petrol injection, VALVETRONIC variable valve timing and double-VANOS variable camshaft timing, while new engine encapsulation technology reduces noise and speeds warm-up.

The diesel engines are fitted with a BMW TwinPower Turbo package comprising variable-geometry turbocharging and common-rail direct injection.

On the four-cylinder BMW 520d, solenoid injectors operating at up to 2,000 bar ensure precise fuel metering and clean combustion, as do the piezo injectors operating at up to 2,500 bar in the six-cylinder in-line engine powering the new 530d and 530d xDrive.

Both units feature BMW BluePerformance technology for reduced emissions. As well as a particulate filter, an oxidation catalyst and a NOX storage catalyst, this package also includes an SCR catalyst with AdBlue injection for additional NOx reductions.

The 2.0-litre diesel unit in the 520d Touring develops 190hp, and 400Nm of torque between 1,750 to 2,500rpm.

It does zero to 100km/h in 7.8 seconds, and has combined fuel consumption of 65.6mpg and CO2 emissions of 114g/km. The launch line-up is topped off by a 3.0-litre straight-six diesel developing 265hp and 620Nm of torque.

This engine can be combined with either rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive.

The zero to 100km/h times are 5.8 seconds for the former and 5.6 seconds for the latter. Combined fuel consumption is 56.4mpg for the rear-wheel drive model and 51.3mpg for the all-wheel drive version, with CO2 emissions of 131g/km and 144g/km respectively – an improvement of up to 11 per cent in fuel consumption and emissions over the previous generation.

The eight-speed automatic gearbox is fitted as standard on all models.

It also offers more luggage space, 570 litres with the seats up (an increase of 10-litres and more than you get in a Volvo V90) and a maximum of 1,700-litres, 30-litres more than in its predecessor.

The increase in the luggage compartment’s width is particularly noticeable. Standard specification includes operation with an independently opening tailgate window.

This combines with the optional Comfort Access feature to allow hands-free opening and closing of the tailgate with a carefully aimed flick of the foot under the rear apron.

All models feature innovative storage solutions such as 40:20:40 near flat-folding rear seat backrests, which can be released remotely from the boot at the push of a button as well as load-dividing nets and a practical underfloor storage area in the boot.

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RSA issues seatbelt warning to Kildare motorists after startling survey

A survey has found that 28%, or more than one in four, women do not wear their seatbelt correctly.

A study of 300 women aged 17 to 34, undertaken by the Road Safety Authority, found that they wore their seatbelts under their arm.

The RSA says this can cause horrific injuries in the event of a collision.

The figure rises to 35% in the case of younger women.

53% of those interviewed said that their friends wore the seatbelt under the arm

The main reasons cited for wearing the seatbelt incorrectly were to relieve neck tension (49%) and for general comfort (47%).

9% said it was to protect their tan, and 7% said it was to protect their clothing.

While seatbelt compliance is consistently very strong among young females, it is not universal: e.g. 23% do not always wear a seat belt as a rear passenger.

The Chief Executive of the RSA Ms. Moyagh Murdock, ntoed that “worryingly, whether for comfort or vanity, many women choose to wear their seatbelts under the arm, instead of over the shoulder, which exposes them to terrible injuries and even death in the event of a crash. Placing the shoulder strap of the seatbelt under their arm leaves your upper torso — including your neck, face and head — completely unrestrained during a collision.

“My message to anyone who wears their seatbelt under their arm is simple – wear your seatbelt correctly. The belt should be worn diagonally across the wearer’s chest on their shoulder and never under the arm. If it feels uncomfortable, adjust the height of the belt on the anchor point on the door frame or adjust the seat position and height.

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Thousands of UK motorists facing 27m in fines for this small mistake on their car

Data obtained by under the Freedom of Information Act revealed one in four failed MOTs were because of a deficient tyre with baldness being the most common reason for rejection. That same problem also accounted for 9000 drivers receiving a combined total of 32000 penalty points last year alone. Driving with a bald tyre carries a maximum three penalty points and a 2500 fine per wheel. However the data showed that on average motorists paid 2700 in fines suggesting many were driving with more than one dodgy wheel. UK drivers put themselves at risk of paying up to 27 million in fines in 2016 as new research shows 2.5 million drivers failed their MOT tests for driving with bald or defective tyres. GETTY The average offender was also slapped with six points on their licence and almost 40 per cent were disqualified from driving. Amanda Stretton motoring editor of said: Its pretty shocking to find out that 2.5 million drivers have failed their MOTs as a result of not checking their tyres regularly. We understand that arranging to have your tyres changed seems like a hassle and we know some drivers are concerned about how big a hole its going to burn in their pockets. But motorists need to ask themselves if its really worth risking three points on their license and enormous fines of up to 2500 per tyre. Despite the repercussions convenience appears to be the main reason why motorists are continuing to drive after realising their tyres are illegal. GETTY Thousands of UK motorists dont bother checking their tyres until its too late More than a third (34 per cent) did not get their tyres changed straight away because they didnt have time while a quarter (24 per cent) said they could not afford it at the time. And a further quarter (23 per cent) said the garage could not fit them in sooner. Lack of education about the legality of driving with bald or defective tyres seems to play a role too. Over half (52 per cent) of motorists feel more should be done to help people understand the law. And one in two (50 per cent) agree that more should be done to raise awareness of the dangers of driving with bald or defective tyres. Over half (52 per cent) say they would find it helpful to have an alert or warning before their tyres are worn below the legal tread depth. Website has launched an online tyre tool which allows drivers to compare tyres and book a fitting for a single pay-on-the-day fee. Drivers can compare the cost of budget mid-range and premium tyres by entering their car registration picking their tyres and choosing from a range of local fitters at a time and date to suit them. Read more: The post Thousands of UK motorists facing 27m in fines for this small mistake on their car appeared first on via Cash For Cars - Locations

Toyota Ireland sees spike in demand for hybrids

Part-battery sales up by 128 per cent.

Toyota Ireland has announced another significant increase in hybrid sales in Ireland in 2017, signifying that hybrid is now moving towards mainstream popularity. The proven hybrid technology that, unlike electric vehicles, you don’t have to plug in, has seen Toyota experience a 128 per cent increase in sales of hybrid vehicles in 2017 compared to last year.

Over 70 per cent of orders for Toyota’s new C-SUV, the C-HR which launched in the Irish market in November 2016 are hybrid while 40 per cent of Toyota Auris and 35 per cent of Toyota Yaris sales in 2017 have been hybrid vehicles.

This latest announcement comes a week after Toyota revealed that global sales of hybrid cars has surpassed 10 million units, further enhancing Toyota’s leadership in hybrid technology. In Ireland, hybrid vehicles now make up a total of 3.5 per cent of the market, up from 1.5 per cent last year. In tandem, sales of diesel vehicles have dropped, this year accounting for 66 per cent of the market – down from 71 per cent last year.

Combining a petrol engine and an electric motor means that Toyota hybrids can deliver very low emissions without the compromise of range anxiety that comes with a pure electric vehicle. In addition, Toyota hybrid emits up to 90 per cent less NOX emissions, compared to a diesel, which are harmful to human health, thereby helping to improve air quality.

Commenting on the announcement, Michael Gaynor, Toyota Ireland Marketing Director said, “The latest sales figures for Toyota petrol hybrid vehicles are definitive proof that Irish customers are more interested in switching to alternatives from diesel than ever before. We are delighted to see such strong growth in Hybrid sales and with over seven models to choose from within the range, Toyota has a hybrid for every Irish driver. Customer demand for hybrid C-HR now accounts for 70 per cent of orders. This is a sea change within the C-SUV segment which is traditionally dominated by diesel.“

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‘Insurance cost doubled’: Call for swifter implementation of report

DEPUTY Niall Collins has welcomed the recent publication of the Report on the Cost of Motor Insurance but has called for swifter implementation of some of its key recommendations.

“If implemented without delay I believe the report can halt the trend of rapidly rising motor insurance premiums. While the Government cannot directly control motor insurance premiums, we have always argued it can influence the factors that determine the premium.

“Last June, we called for the establishment of a national claims register and a motor insurance database to record data across the sector. In that regard, I welcome the report’s recommendation that a national claims information database be set up.

“However, I am deeply disappointed that the target is to have this done by the middle of 2018,” said Mr Collins.

The insurance industry has consistently claimed that the cost of awards is the decisive factor in spiralling motor insurance premiums, he said.

“In that respect, the establishment of a Personal Injuries Commission is a step forward but it must act swiftly to address awards that are out of line with international practice.

“I welcome the fact that the Commission will examine the various ‘care not cash’ models of compensation used elsewhere. In addition, the Injuries Assessment Board has to be given stronger powers to be the final decision maker in respect of more claims.

“There has to be a serious clampdown on the issue of false and exaggerated claims as this practice is undoubtedly contributing to sky high premium increases. We are not seeing enough of these cases brought to Court for prosecution.

“The key issue now is implementation. With each passing day, more and more motorists are receiving their renewal notices in the letter-box with massive hikes in their premium.

“Recently, a constituent called into my office and showed me his renewal notice which had doubled from just over €500 last year to over €1,000 this year. Motorists will ultimately judge the effectiveness of this report by the impact it has on their premiums,” said Mr Collins.

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1917 – 2017: Ford celebrates 100 years in Ireland

Actor Aidan Quinn in the advertisement for Ford

It is exactly 100 years since Henry Ford established the Ford factory on the Marina in Cork city, and Ford Ireland plans to mark the centenary through a number of exciting initiatives in 2017.

Ford has launched an extensive and impactful new marketing campaign based around the company’s Irish centenary. Irish-American actor Aidan Quinn features in a campaign which is already becoming familiar to Irish motorists.

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There are many activities, promotions and events planned throughout the year, with one of the highlights being a Gala Dinner Event at City Hall on April 21 to mark the actual centenary.

Commenting on the centenary, Ciarán McMahon, Chairman and Managing Director of Ford Ireland, said: “Ford has a unique heritage in Ireland, not only through the company’s close family links with Cork but also through the Cork Ford factory and of course many decades of much-loved Ford cars and vans on Irish roads. And we are still to the forefront in the automotive sector in Ireland with the widest network of dealers, providing employment, directly and indirectly, to some 1,000 people across the country”.

“Ford vehicles were and still are an ubiquitous sight on the streets and roads of Ireland all through the 20th century and right up to the present day,” Mr. McMahon went on. “The brand’s constant popularity meant that almost every Irish person grew up with a Ford car in the family or had aunts, uncles and neighbours who drove a Ford.”

“The factory is sadly no more, but Ford remains one of the best-selling brands in both the car and van market in Ireland,” he added. “Several of our models including the Fiesta, Focus and Transit are segment leaders while the all new Mustang is in a class of its own.

“The company is also looking to the future as we plan for the next century of business in Ireland,” said the Ford Ireland chief. “Ford is the company with the largest test fleet of autonomous driving vehicles in the world, and in 2017 we will start testing autonomous vehicles across Europe. The company is moving from traditional vehicle manufacture to being a smart mobility solutions provider as we tackle the global mobility challenges of the 21st century.”

Ford Family Roots in Cork

The Ford Motor Company was set up in Michigan by Henry Ford in 1903. True to his roots, just 14 years later Henry opened the first purpose-built Ford factory to be located outside of North America at the Marina in Cork.

Henry’s father, William Ford, emigrated from Ballinascarty in Co. Cork (50km from Cork City) with his parents and siblings in 1847 during the Famine; Henry was born in Michigan in 1863. Growing up on the family farm, Henry developed a strong interest in mechanics. At first, he concentrated his efforts on making work easier for farmers but he soon came to realise the potential of the motor car as a force for good for the development of societies across the globe. Although he cannot be credited with inventing the motor car, Henry Ford was the man who brought motoring to the masses: the affordable yet rugged vehicles he was producing through his newly invented production-line manufacturing technique – which has since been copied by practically every vehicle and machinery manufacturer across the globe.

‘Bringing it all back home’ – Ford factory established in Cork 1917

When it came time to expand the business to Europe, there is no doubt that Henry’s Cork roots played an important part in his decision to open a plant in Cork. In his own words, he hoped that the new Ford plant ‘would start Ireland along the road to industry’. The setting up of the Ford plant in Cork was the first example of foreign direct investment in Ireland, many decades before the term was even coined.

The company that he legally established was entitled Henry Ford & Son Ltd. and that continues to be the legal name of Ford in Ireland to this day – the only Ford entity in the world to include the full name of the company’s founder in its title.

When the Cork Ford plant became fully operational, Europe was just emerging from a catastrophic World War and Communist Russia was in the midst of a huge modernisation programme so tractors were the vehicles that were most urgently needed. The Fordson tractor was the main product produced by the Cork plant, which in 1929 became the largest tractor factory in the world. However, the factory also produced passenger models, including the iconic Model T. Indeed, the last Model T ever produced by Ford anywhere in the world rolled off the Cork factory production line in December 1928.

In addition to the Model T, the Cork factory also produced all the other main Ford vehicles that were sold in Europe from the 30s right up to the 70s and 80s including the Model A, Model BF and Model Y; Prefect; Anglia; Escort; Cortina; and Sierra.

With Ireland’s accession to the EEC in 1973, Ireland had to comply with new rules that lifted the previous restrictions on imports of fully built motor vehicles into the country; this, combined with a depressed car market in the late 1970s and early 1980s meant that the plant became no longer viable and, regrettably, it closed its doors in 1984.

In the intervening years, Ford has continued to be a strong player on the automotive scene in Ireland and the company has the widest network of dealers in the country with 52 dealerships.

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Kildare town’s Fitzpatrick’s win top motoring industry award

Gavan Doyle, Martin O’Brien, Alan Mahon, SIMI President Alan Greene, Andy Fitzpatrick Managing Director, Pat Creed Managing Director of Bank of Ireland Finance

The team at Fitzpatrick’s in Kildare town have scooped a top Irish motoring industry award.

Fitzpatrick’s Garage Accident Repair Centre on the town’s Dublin Road, won the ‘Bodyshop of the Year’ title at last night’s SIMI Irish Motor Industry Awards, which were held at the Clayton Hotel.

It is the seventh year of the awards, which were emceed by popular RTÉ sports presenter Marty Morrissey.

Some 700 people attended the awards night, which is open to all sectors of the Irish Motor Industry. Fitzpatrick’s were the only Kildare winners among eight prizes awarded.

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REPORT: Ireland’s used car industry booming

DoneDeal, Ireland’s most visited website for buying and selling cars, has released new data on the performance of its Motor Section in 2016, giving an insight into Ireland’s rapidly growing used car industry and the nation’s favourite cars.

The data showed that the value of goods advertised on DoneDeal’s Motor Section in 2016 was a staggering €5.4 billion, which equates to €14.8 million in the value of goods advertised on the site each day. A record number of ads were also placed on the Motor Section of the website in 2016, as almost one million (991,734) ads were advertised, representing an increase of 9.3% on 2015 figures.

Ireland’s favourite car brands and colours were also revealed, as the data found that the Volkswagen Golf was the top selling car on DoneDeal in 2016, followed by Ford Focus, VW Passat, BMW 3 Series and Audi A4. In total, 663,336 cars were advertised on DoneDeal in 2016, highlighting the massive growth of used car sales in Ireland. Black cars were confirmed as the nation’s favourite car colour, with black as the top selling car colour on DoneDeal, followed by blue, grey, red and white cars.

DoneDeal also experienced growth in car dealerships advertising on its Motor Section, as the number of ads placed by car dealers increased by 21% in 2016, with the number of car dealers subscribing to DoneDeal also up 17%.

Cathal Cremen, Commercial Manager of DoneDeal’s Motor Section, commented on the data results; “2016 proved to be another exceptional year for DoneDeal in terms of traffic growth and adverts placed on the site. Once again our Motor Section proved to be the most popular section of the site with 663,336 cars alone advertised on DoneDeal in 2016.

“A significant feature of DoneDeal’s success in 2016 was the increase in the number of car dealerships now subscribing to DoneDeal. This is very much a reflection of the commitment and investment that DoneDeal has been making to ensure we deliver a quality service for our clients. We look forward to continuing to grow the Motor Section in 2017 and remaining the most visited website for buying and selling cars in Ireland” he said.

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Hordes of motorists already caught out by new law on using phone while driving

A taxi driver holding a mobile phone whilst driving on the A34 near Didcot in Oxfordshire (Picture: PA) Motorists have already been caught flouting new laws on phone usage behind the wheel on the very day they came into force. Scores of drivers using phones have been handed penalties and fines doubled to six points and 200 as road patrols on the first day of the law change get under way. By noon on Wednesday police said they had stopped 31 drivers on their mobiles in Dorset. One of these was a driver of a 7.5 tonne lorry using his phone while travelling around a roundabout in the Bournemouth area the force said. Another driver who was stopped by police in Norfolk was responding to a message about her lost puppy being found. A van driver holding a mobile phone whilst driving on the M20 near Ashford Kent (Picture: PA) Motorists on the A3 through Guildford using their phones on the day that the points for the offence has increased to 6 points on your licence and a 200 fine. Guildford (Picture: SWNS) The force tweeted that it had stopped 11 drivers on their phones in the space of just 90 minutes. More than 20 motoring offences were detected by officers from Kents Roads Policing Unit this morning. Of those stopped 12 drivers were using their phones four for not being in proper control of their vehicle and another four for driving at excess speed. A driver who appeared to be talking to a parrot yes a parrot perched on the steering wheel was also stopped after his van was spotted swerving between lanes on the M20 the force said. An officer pulls a car over as part of a drive to inform motorists of the risk of using a phone whilst driving in London (Picture: Getty) Hordes of drivers have already been caught (Picture: SWNS) One driver had his vehicle seized for using a mobile phone while driving not using a seat belt and driving without insurance. Thames Valley Police said 11 people were stopped for using phones including two new drivers in its first patrol of the day. Another five people were stopped for not wearing seat belts. A journalist believed to be on his way to cover the launch of new penalties was also stopped for using his mobile while driving. Other police forces are expected to release figures after a week-long national crackdown. Around 3600 motorists were handed penalties in a similar initiative last month. A van driver holding a mobile phone whilst driving on the M20 near Ashford Kent (Picture: PA) Changes to laws on driving The new driving penalties include: New drivers can have their licence revoked if they get six penalty points in their first two years on the road which could now be the result of sending a single text message. More experienced motorists can lose their licence if they receive 12 points in a three-year period. Transport Secretary Chris Grayling said increasing fixed penalties will be a strong deterrent for motorists. Twenty-two people were killed and 99 seriously injured in accidents on Britains roads in 2015 where a motorist using a mobile was a contributory factor latest figures show. According to the Transport Research Laboratory reaction times are twice as long for drivers who are texting compared with those who have been drinking. And an RAC survey found that one in four (26%) motorists admits checking texts emails and social media while driving. Read more: The post Hordes of motorists already caught out by new law on using phone while driving appeared first on via Cash For Cars - Locations