Author

Kristin Shaw

Nissan safety

Important safety technology now in more Nissan models

Nissan is now offering its Rear Door Alert (RDA) technology on 12 models and is expected to be available on all four-door trucks, sedans and SUVs by 2022.  Designed to help reduce risks posed by dangerous interior car temperatures, this technology was invented by a pair of Nissan engineers who are also mothers. RDA was inspired by pan of lasagna accidentally left in the back seat of a car overnight.

Marlene Mendoza, one of the inventing engineers and a mother of three, was pregnant when the idea struck. “[After the lasagna incident] the car smelled for days, but it made me ask myself, ‘What if I left something far more important back there?'”

Rear Door Alert reminds owners to check the rear seat upon exiting their vehicle by using a series of distinctive honks as the driver walks away from the vehicle. Nissan is the first automaker to use a honking horn as an alert for this type of feature.

The system uses door sequence logic, the center instrument panel message display and multiple horn honks to help remind drivers to check the rear seat after the vehicle is parked. The system can help remind parents and caregivers that precious cargo is in the back seat.

RDA expansion

For model year 2020, RDA is standard on the Nissan Altima, Armada, Kicks (SV and SR), LEAF, Murano, Maxima, Pathfinder, Rogue, Rogue Sport, Sentra, TITAN (King Cab and Crew Cab) and Versa (SV and SR).

In 2019, Nissan joined other vehicle manufacturers in a pledge to have a rear seat reminder feature in essentially all cars and trucks by model year 2025 or sooner. Under this commitment, automakers will introduce a wide range of approaches to help parents and caregivers remember to check the back seat as they leave a vehicle.

How RDA works

Once activated, the system monitors when a rear door is opened and closed before and after the vehicle is in motion. If a rear door was used before a trip but was not opened after the vehicle is parked, the system reminds the driver to check the rear seat. Once the vehicle is in park, the system will first display a notification in the instrument panel. If the driver exits the vehicle and does not open a rear door, the system progresses to distinctive chirps of the horn.

The RDA system is easy to configure and can be temporarily, or permanently, turned on through a menu in the cluster display or through a separate RDA switch, depending on the model.

To learn more about Rear Door Alert and the full Nissan vehicle lineup, visit here.

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Hagerty classic car

Miles for Parkinson’s Disease

Hagerty is partnering with non-profit Drive Toward a Cure to encourage enthusiasts to do what we all enjoy the most: DRIVE. Over 75 days of Summer 2020, licensed motorists nationwide can appreciate drives near or far and enter to win prizes based on the mileage they drive. Participants share their experiences on social media, while benefiting Parkinson’s Disease awareness, research, and patient care.

Affecting nearly one million Americans and 10 million worldwide, Parkinson’s disease is the second-most common neurodegenerative disease after Alzheimer’s. It’s also the 14th-leading cause of death in the United States. The disease is associated with a progressive loss of motor control (like shaking or tremor at rest and lack of facial expression), as well as non-motor symptoms (e.g., depression and anxiety). There is no cure for Parkinson’s and 60,000 new cases are diagnosed each year in the US alone.

Hagerty classic carDrives Generate Memories

According to Doug Clark, vice president of publishing and business development for Hagerty, the joy of driving builds bonds with people on every level.

“No one would deny the memories we all retain from great drives – whether youthful recollections for nostalgic cars or the roads we envision on a crisp and clear summer day or night,” said Clark. “The ‘Summer Drive Toward a Cure’ program is an opportunity to get out safely and just feel good, while doing some good for others, too.”

The first 100 registrants to enter at www.drivetowardacure.org/summer and create a public social media post on Facebook or Instagram featuring a photo of the car they have registered and the message “I’ve just joined the Summer Drive Toward a Cure in support of #ParkinsonsDisease! Will you join too? @drivetowardacure #getoutanddrive @hagerty #letsdrivetogether” will receive a free Hagerty ‘Shift Happens’ baseball cap and Drive Toward a Cure window cling.

Hagerty classic car

Join the Fun

Throughout the entire summer, Drive Toward a Cure and Hagerty will be sharing new suggested driving routes weekly on Hagerty’s Community pages and encouraging participants to share their own driving routes and scenic drives within a dedicated forum.  Weekly prizes will be awarded to individuals selected from social media and community posts, with overall program prizes to be announced on Labor Day.

Special awards for most miles driven and most money raised will be awarded after Labor Day when odometer readings and monetary contributions are tallied.  Top prizes include a certificate for four (4) Michelin tires, valued at $1,500; a $250 gift certificate for DriveShare by Hagerty; and a $150 value ‘Steve McQueen’ gift basket from Hunziker Design including t-shirts and Steve McQueen racing shoes.  Apparel gifts will be provided to entrants at various donation levels.  Initial registration is $20 but larger donations are encouraged – with the ability to make one’s own donation, have individual or corporate sponsors for personal driving experiences, or to bring friends together safely for a group drive through each registrants’ individual fundraising page.

Should an entrant wish to drive something other than their own registered vehicle, they can easily find a collectible or special vehicle through DriveShare by Hagerty.  All rentals applying code DTAC2020 will receive a 10% discount, plus DriveShare will donate their profits from the rental to Drive Toward a Cure!  Sign up to rent a car in your region at www.driveshare.com.

Raise Money by Doing what You Love: Driving

Hagerty has teamed with Drive Toward a Cure since the organization’s inception in 2016 when the Foundation first began blending cars and camaraderie to raise awareness and funds for Parkinson’s disease.  With more than $400,000 raised over the past four years, Drive Toward a Cure supports both Parkinson’s research AND patient care, raising funds through events and annual rallies enjoyed by the automotive enthusiast community at large.

According to Deb Pollack, founder of Drive Toward a Cure, as the organization enters its fourth year, its awareness is blooming on a national scale.  “During the past year alone, we’ve made some enormous strides.  With a large donation to the Parkinson’s Foundation, we were able to support specific patient care needs and focus on six Parkinson’s Centers of Excellence throughout the country.  By aligning our events to areas within those regions, we can potentially provide even more funds and make a significant difference for challenged individuals.”

Pollack concedes that the easiest way for her organization to raise funds has always been through interactive programs that are both fun and car-oriented, but one doesn’t have to drive to play a role.  Groups and organizations like local area Ferrari and Porsche clubs throughout the nation have come on board to offer panel discussions, garage tours, BBQs and social gatherings to raise funds on behalf of Drive Toward a Cure.  In 2018, the funds raised by those groups enabled the Foundation to offer grants to Parkinson’s patients residing in California that had lost their homes in the devastating fires, and has since become the organization’s ‘Special Assistance Fund.’  Applicants can gain additional funding to support patient care needs during overwhelming catastrophes and other special needs.

Classic cars Hagerty

More about Drive Toward a Cure

Drive Toward a Cure raises funds and awareness for Parkinson’s Disease research and patient care. Inspired by the camaraderie found within the automotive culture, the organization’s mission benefits equally from both enthusiast communities and industry professionals. Drive Toward a Cure events harness enthusiasm for cars and driving and turn that power into support for ongoing work to improve the lives of those living with Parkinson’s, as well as the research that will hopefully one day lead to a cure.

Drive Toward a Cure is a 501(c)(3) non-profit supporting beneficiaries including The Michael J. Fox Foundation The Parkinson’s Institute and Clinical Center and the Parkinson’s Foundation . For donations, sponsorship and event registration, please visit www.drivetowardacure.org.

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2021 Nissan Rogue

What’s new

  • 2021 Nissan Rogue includes Nissan Safety Shield 360 across the entire lineup
  • Intelligent driver alertness technology and Rear Door Alert now standard across all trim levels
  • “Family Hub” features add convenience for rear passengers
  • Vehicle Motion Control works in conjunction with intelligent AWD system and drive mode selector to provide four-wheel individual control and better cornering
  • 2.5L 4-cylinder engine generating 181 hp, an increase of 11 hp
  • Platinum trim added to the lineup
  • Five new two-tone color combinations

Strong mpg numbers enhanced for 2021

For model years 2017-2020, Nissan’s top-selling smart crossover has been known for stellar fuel efficiency and a nimble, quiet ride.  Powered by a 170-hp 2.5L engine, Nissan Rogue buyers could choose between 2WD and 4WD, and could get a little over 30 mpg on the highway. For 2021, Nissan added 11 hp to the mix for a little more oomph and upped the torque lb-ft by six, giving it even more zip. And the mpg numbers are even more promising: FWD models will get 35 mpg on the S trim and 34 on the other three (SV, SL, and Platinum), and AWD gets 33 and 32, respectively.

2021 Nissan Rogue

Updated styling

Firstly, Nissan has updated the V-motion grille, widening it and giving it a bit more heft. Next, to the side of the distinctive grille new multi-level LED headlights with an expanded illumination area are standard on all 2021 Nissan Rogue trims. Finally, LED fog lights are standard on SL and Platinum grades.

The rear cargo area is accessible through the newly available motion-activated tailgate. Once you open it up Nissan’s popular Divide-n-Hide system has been updated while still providing hidden and secure storage for essential gear. Now on the inner right side of the cargo area (behind the wheel arch) a cubby is perfectly sized for a gallon of milk, reducing your spill risk. We say that’s a great place for a gallon of homemade root beer in the summer, too.


Family Features

The 2021 Nissan Rogue amps up the family quotient with an enhanced feature set Nissan is calling the “Family Hub.”

As it was for the 2020 model, seventy cubic feet of cargo space is plenty of room for your kids, sports equipment, and even your furry friends in a Rogue. The new butterfly-opening center console gives you the option to place an item inside – tissues or wipes, for instance – and back-seat passengers are able to access it. If you have small children, you’ll see the functionality with that new feature. Further, more storage space is available under the front console.

Two things we love about the Rogues (and about Nissan in general) are the NASA-inspired Zero Gravity seats and Rear Door Alert. First, Rear Door Alert (which was invented by two Nissan engineers who are also moms) helps remind you of items or kids that may be forgotten in the rear seat. If the system detects that a rear door was opened or closed prior to a trip, but then was not re-opened again after the trip was completed, the system responds with a series of visual and audible notifications. Secondly, Zero Gravity seats – designed to reduce fatigue and increase comfort – have 14 pressure points to put your back in a neutral position. Now your back-seat passengers benefit from Zero Gravity seats, too, and they’re going to appreciate that addition if you’ve had a Nissan Rogue in the past.

We also appreciate the expansion of the Nissan Intelligent Key to the rear doors. With the 2021 model, anyone can unlock a front or rear door by pressing a button on any of the four doors or unlock all doors by pressing twice.

Interior technology features also include push button start, Rear Door Alert and easy-fill tire alert, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, Bluetooth connectivity, hands-free text messaging assistant, Siri Eyes Free, Google assistant and Sirius XM radio. Standard USB-C (fast chargers) are also included in every Rogue.

2021 Nissan Rogue

More safety features with ProPILOT Assist

Nissan’s ProPILOT Assist, the brand’s driver-assist technology suite, combines steering assist and Intelligent Cruise Control to help control acceleration, braking and steering in both heavy traffic and on the highway. Nissan says ProPILOT Assist  uses next-generation radar and camera technology to provide smoother braking, better steering assist feel and improved detection performance when other vehicles cut into the lane.

ProPILOT Assist with Navi-link is standard on Rogue Platinum and available on Rogue SL. If you link ProPILOT Assist with Nissan’s navigation system, the map data can now provide the ability to proactively reduce speed for upcoming freeway curves or junctions and also help you slow for freeway exits. Nissan appears to be actively pursuing semi-autonomous driving that not everyone appreciates but some will love.

If you regularly encounter stop-and-go traffic, vehicles with ProPILOT Assist with Navi-link gave you three seconds to remain stopped and automatically continue without having to tap the accelerator. Now it’s up to 30 seconds, which makes a lot more sense in large city areas. Lastly, the Rogue provies traffic sign recognition and can automatically update the vehicle’s speed when the speed limit goes up or down.

2021 Nissan Rogue

Nissan’s 2021 Rogue will be available this fall.

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By now, you’ve heard that the Hummer is back as a model in the GMC family. But it’s not the same Hummer you might remember from the 90s. Originally designed for the military, the H1 was known for an estimated mpg rating south of 20, a wide road hog that evoked Arnold Schwarzenegger associations.

That particular vehicle faded out of the market in 2008; gone but not forgotten. Rising up from the ashes of that original Hummer, the new GMC Hummer EV has blazed back onto the scene as of January with a bold commercial during the biggest NFL game of the year.

Zero-emissions and all electric, the new Hummer EV boasts 1000 hp and, GMC says, 11,500 lb-ft of torque. That number is not exactly the torque calculation you’re used to, however; some speculate that it’s the wheel torque multiplied by the gear ratio. Even so, if the Hummer has 1000 lb-ft of torque, it’s still an incredibly impressive number. And with a reported 0-60 in less than three seconds, this vehicle is definitely going to MOVE.

Adding to the fun, removable roof panels allow you to feel the wind through your hair in this hulking new-generation beast.

The electric vehicle market is picking up, with competitors Bollinger and Rivian promoting EV trucks with less horsepower but with other alluring features. Bollinger’s B2 will have the capability to carry a 16-foot load through a patented passthrough into the cabin, and the B1 is a four-seat SUV with removable glass, doors, roof panels, and windshield. Rivian’s R1T has parking-lot friendly dimensions and 11,000-pound towing capabilities, and its R1S SUV is more family friendly, with three sleek rows. Ford says an F-150 is in the works, which we’re looking forward to hearing more about soon. The brand’s Mustang Mach-E, which debuted last year, is much smaller and more budget-friendly than the Hummer EV, but includes the all-electric instant-torque thrill.

GMC called this new SUV a “quiet revolution” in its January commercial and it’s going to be interesting to see who buys this vehicle. It seems obvious that it won’t be the same consumers who bought the gas-guzzling original, but who knows? The brand is currently saying that it will be available as of the fall of 2021. We’re looking forward to it.

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Kristin interviews Melissa Stockwell, who lost her left leg in Iraq while in the U.S. Army and is now a multi-time Paralympian who is a part of Team Toyota aiming for the 2020 games. Melissa talks about what it’s like to compete as a triathlete with a disability, her beloved Toyota 4Runner TRD Pro, and life as a busy mom in Colorado.

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If you’ve never driven a McLaren, you might imagine how the wheel feels in your hands or how the seats cradle your body capably. You might imagine the roar of the engine and the supple materials inside.

A thrilling new McLaren Tech Club film looks at the materials selected for the McLaren GT. Blending greater comfort, space and usability with the levels of driver engagement, dynamic ability and performance for which McLaren is renowned, the GT has its own unique identity – inside and out.

New interior materials are a key aspect of the GT’s credentials and appeal. The McLaren design team explored alternatives to traditional coverings in areas such as luggage spaces, as well as on seats and other trim. The appearance and tactile attraction of driver controls are also an important part of the interior design, with machined and knurled aluminum that looks and feels both beautiful and technical while delivering precise functionality.

McLaren is committed to pursuing lightweight solutions across all aspects of design and engineering and the interior of the GT is no exception.  A new material called SuperFabric, originally designed for military and aerospace applications, is available as a covering for the floor of the luggage bay. This innovative woven fabric is infused with a layer of tiny armored guard plates, providing increased resistance to stains, cuts, nicks and abrasions.  Breathable, easy to clean and quick to dry, the surface of the SuperFabric is embossed with a hexagonal pattern to provide optimal protection.

This single-minded approach to light weighting extends to more traditional cabin materials with McLaren adopting a contemporary approach to achieve the brand’s design philosophy of ‘everything for a reason’, bringing fashion and lifestyle inspirations to the finest materials and developing new exclusive colorways.  The supple Nappa leather offered as standard in the GT can be upgraded to softgrain luxury leather or Alcantara but regardless of owner preference all of the fine leathers used in the GT are sourced from Scotland’s Bridge of Weir company. Alternatively, cashmere is available in either Dove Grey or Jet Black as one of the most exclusive options from McLaren Special Operations, the chic fabric featuring on the seats and key ‘touchpoints’ in the cabin. McLaren is the first car manufacturer to offer the softest and most luxurious of wools in a production version supercar.

Introducing innovative new interior materials for any McLaren is a huge challenge. With the GT we were creating beauty and luxury but with the additional layers of functionality and advanced technology that are inherent in every car we design – and all delivered in a very modern way. Everything in a McLaren is there for a reason, not simply to look good; the materials need to be authentic not only in appearance and to the touch, but also in meeting our requirements for minimizing weight and performance in use.

Jo Lewis, Colour and Materials Design Manager, McLaren Automotive Ltd.

 

In line with McLaren’s pursuit of innovation while retaining authenticity, machined and knurled aluminum driver controls engage the senses both through touch and by visually ‘guiding’ the driver around the cabin. Designed to harmoniously bring together the full concept of the interior design, the finishers, bezels, paddles and switches create a sophisticated and inviting ambiance that reinforce McLaren’s technical precision. The GT also features the first application of ‘hidden until lit’ interior illumination; appearing at first as a solid metallic finish, this pioneering light design reveals a calming, ambient glow once the ignition is turned on. For design continuity, the ambient lighting pattern also links visually to the speaker grills of the recently awarded Bowers & Wilkins audio system. Detailed around the doors and passenger-side dash, the lit hues can be changed to suit interior colors or mood.

More information about the McLaren GT – and an online configurator that allows you to choose your own perfect specification for the car – is available at https://cars.mclaren.com/gb-en/new-mclaren-gt.

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