Skoda: 2014 Citigo review

September 5th, 2014 by Ian Ferguson

The Custard Yellow five-door Skoda hatchback parked on the roof top of the downtown building, almost appears as if it’s sneering at the bigger cars jammed around it in very tight spaces.

Outwardly the Citigo appears small, but that’s until you hop into it, and find a roomy and practical cabin indoors. Even Alec Issigonis [designer of the original Mini] could get a gin bottle from his liquor outlet to fit in the door recess. If it was Blue in our household it maybe referred to as the Tardis. Continue reading “Skoda: 2014 Citigo review” »

GM announces new Ecotec small engine development

October 14th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

General Motors has announced plans to completely overhaul it’s smallest engine range. This will involve replacing three engine families with a new modular Ecotec design.

Production of the more economical engines will begin around 2015 and it’s expected that by 2020 GM will be producing around two million of these motors per year.

The engines will be developed for global applications but GM hasn’t revealed what models are most likely to receive them. The displacements will range from 1.0-litres through to 1.5-litres in three- and four-cylinder formats. They will feature direct injection, a turbocharger and alternative fuel compatibility. There’s no word on specifications, but GM says the engines will deliver increased fuel efficiency and reduced CO2 emissions. Continue reading “GM announces new Ecotec small engine development” »

Volvo to use only three- and four-cylinder engines by 2020

September 23rd, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Volvo has made a formal commitment to lowering the fuel consumption on every vehicle in its range. How is it going to do it? By eliminating any engine that has more than four cylinders.

It sounds very simple, the Swedish automaker will drop out any five- and six-cylinder engines from its range over the next 10 years. Overall fuel economy figures and C02 emissions will drop and Volvo will earn a reputation as an environmentally conscious car maker. The key to this new initiative comes with the introduction of new three- and four-cylinder powerplants in both gasoline and diesel form.

The new engine family is called Volvo Environmental Architecture (VEA), and the new powertrains will be around 90kg lighter than Volvo’s current engines. In addition to the weight savings, the new engines will improve fuel economy by 35 percent. That’s a serious advancement and Volvo is saying that this is possible without a reduction in performance. Continue reading “Volvo to use only three- and four-cylinder engines by 2020” »