Summer delight: Gran Turismo travelling in the new Fiat Tipo

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Gran Turismo Travelling in the Fiat Tipo: here in front of a fine restaurant and vineyard at Tain l’Ermitage…

After having experienced the excellent qualities of the Tipo in our regular test, we were truly delighted to take the wheel of this very well engineered and built five seater on a trip to the French midi, thanks to the dynamic PR team of FCA Belgium. It was a marvelous experience, where the Tipo showed its outstanding  properties of a fully fledged Gran Turismo automobile.

Hans Knol ten Bensel

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We drove the Mini Clubman One D: joining the club is only fun…

 

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We already praised in our previous test the unique character of the Mini and the driving pleasure and panache this car offers every meter you drive it. Sliding behind the wheel of this Clubman version, we liked the Mini even more.

The Clubman is bigger, has wider shoulders so to say, but inside the cabin the atmosphere remains every bit Mini. Indeed, the dashboard, door panels and seats are literally studded with styling elements which are so typically and iconically Mini.

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The designers did a terrific job, and are only to be congratulated for it. Despite its bigger dimensions, the external proportions are “just right” and this Clubman is timelessly attractive. Just read on…

Hans Knol ten Bensel

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We drove the Seat Cupra 2.0 TSI 290 HP DSG: pure Spanish passion on wheels…

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We really live in delightful times. If you think that modern cars make you less passionate about the art of driving, just take a closer look. At for instance this formidable Seat Cupra we tested here for you.

It truly amazed us how this well made compact five seater reaches a level of performance and handling which a few years ago were exclusively reserved to thoroughbred sports cars. Just read on…

Hans Knol ten Bensel

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Audi City Paris: a new four ringed cyberstore opens at a prime location…

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Paris has a new automotive top address: Audi City Paris is opening today on the Place du Marché Saint Honoré. The fifth site worldwide for the brand’s fully digital showrooms presents the four rings at a top location in the heart of the French capital, with the famous Place Vendôme and Rue Saint Honoré in the direct vicinity. Just read on…

Hans Knol ten Bensel

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We drove the Fiat Tipo 1,6 Multijet 120 HP: style, elegance and performance at a price…

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The Fiat group unveils with the new Tipo in what it truly excels: offering character, latin elegance, practicality and impressive performance together with incredible value for money.

Indeed, this Tipo has it all. A stylish package, which looks and feels by no means cheap, with a very willing state of the art high-tech Diesel engine under the hood, sitting on a modern platform. It drives wonderfully suave, showing the enormous experience this large group has gained in building compact, well performing, practical vehicles endowed with character and performance.

A test of the 1,6 Multijet version of the Tipo truly convinced us of all this, again…

Hans Knol ten Bensel

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We drove the Seat Leon ST 1.4 TGI : going green with pleasure…

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Already more than a decade ago we asked at the annual VW press conference how the group was coming along with its (VW) bestsellers running on natural gas. The answer was somewhat hesitant then, but positive. Things were under study, so they said, and indeed, looked likely to be introduced.  Well, the VW group engineers have taken things at heart. And state of the art CNG technology is now available on a wide range of models and brands within the group, amongst others in this elegant looking Seat Leon ST (Sports Tourer) . We drove it, and it brought a smile on our face…

Hans Knol ten Bensel

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Like father, like son… An exclusive film on the new Fiat 124 Spider broadcast on Father’s Day…

On the 50th birthday of the iconic Fiat 124 Spider, Fiat brings a special film, depicting the love for this elegant two seater which is passed on from generation to generation.

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Indeed, for Fiat this passionate story continues with the brand new 124 spider, which embodies all the elegance and panache the original 124 Spider became so famous for.

The film shows both cars in a dramatically beautiful setting, driven by father and son respectively, showing not only the cars, but also the drivers. The generation theme is very present, and nicely developed. Lest not forget, even the younger drivers in the new 124 Spider have often become already fathers too…

This film will be shown on all Belgian television stations on Father’s Day, June 12.

So for a bout of film showing automotive elegance, nostalgia, Italian scenic beauty, all wrapped in a nice generation theme, just tune in next Sunday…

Hans Knol ten Bensel

We drove the BMW 225xe Active Tourer: all the seduction of hybrid e-power…

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When BMW comes up with a plug-in hybrid, you can expect something truly special. Indeed, the cars from Munich offer not only sublime power and performance, but always combine it with uncanny mechanical refinement and a sporting willingness which truly stands out. You just want to put that right foot deeper, and enjoy the velvety  stream of power which unfolds, time and again, just for your pleasure. “Aus Freude am Fahren”,  the men from Munich say, and indeed, the 225xe delivers this unique driving pleasure which we all cherish behind the wheel of a BMW.

Hans Knol ten Bensel

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We drove the 230 HP Skoda Octavia Combi RS: the delight of sportiness

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We vividly remember the roaring sound of the Skoda 130 RS coupés in the legendary Boucles de Spa, now decades ago. These works rally cars showed dramatically the craftmanship of these men in Mlada Boleslav. In 1986 the Skoda 130 almost won the legendary event in the Belgian ardennes, and this on Czech winter tires.

In the presently held Legend Boucles de Spa our rally master Freddy Loix is nowadays to be seen behind the wheel of the historic Skoda Group B 130…

And this sporting tradition continues in today’s production cars. Because the Skoda men fully know the secrets of designing and building a thoroughbred sporting car, with excellent handling and exhilarating performance.

The 230 HP Octavia Combi RS , being now the fastest production Skoda Octavia ever produced, showed this all the way again in our test. Just read on…

Hans Knol ten Bensel

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Nissan sees the future electric car becoming your personal (home) powerhouse

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The “smart” home power station according to Nissan: the Nissan Leaf is charged through solar energy generated on the roof of your house, gives its power to the home battery storage unit, and is also smartly connected to the national power grid…

The future will be bold, according to Nissan. Cars will not only connect for safe (self)driving or to keep you socially informed and entertained, they will also connect to your home power grid, take in energy when it is cheap and you don’t need it, and give it back when you ask for it.

Connected via your home to the national and European power grids, it functions as an energy provider, ironing out the peaks of demand for these power grid systems, which is very welcome indeed to avoid power disruption(s) and shortages. In this way it also alleviates the need for (very) large investments by the energy network companies to cope with the power demand surges…

We attended a very interesting conference in London, where Nissan steps into this energy “sharing” future, together with very promising and strong partners like energy providers Enel and the UK National Grid, who see also the advantages of this concept.

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