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Rolls-Royce New Head of Design

ROLLS-ROYCE MOTOR CARS ANNOUNCES NEW HEAD OF DESIGN

Rolls-Royce Motor Cars has announced that Jozef Kabaň has been appointed Head of Design. Kabaň, 46, is an experienced and talented designer, having spent the majority of his career at a senior level in automotive design. Kabaň joins Rolls-Royce Motor Cars from the BMW Group where he has been Head of Design Studio BMW since 2017.

Passionate about car design and art from an early age, and with an obsession for detail, Kabaň completed his studies in Bratislava and London, concluding with a Master of Art in Car Design at the Royal College of Art in London. Aged just 20, Kabaň was one of the youngest ever designers to join the VW Group. He progressed rapidly, and in 1998 he was awarded project lead for the Bugatti Veyron, for which he designed the exterior. He gained global recognition for the design, demonstrating his ability, even at this early stage in his career, to combine the automotive world with those of luxury and art.  

His success led to a desire to continue broadening his experience in the automotive field, leading to Head of Exterior roles, first at Audi AG and then Skoda Auto. At Skoda he was recognized for revolutionizing the manufacturer’s design ethos, significantly influencing the design and emotionality of the brand through a broad range of models. Throughout this period of his career he also maintained design responsibility for small volume projects, including limited and special editions and show cars.

Torsten Müller-Ötvös, Chief Executive Officer, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, said, “I am delighted to announce that Jozef Kabaň has been appointed Head of Design. He is an exceptionally talented designer with a strong track record and a wide breadth of ability. It is testament to the success of our business that, as the world’s leading luxury house, we are able to attract the world’s very best design talent.” He continued, “This is an exciting time for our brand and I look forward to welcoming Jozef to the Rolls-Royce family.”

Adrian van Hooydonk, Chief Designer, BMW Group, commented, “The Rolls-Royce Design Team creates outstanding motor cars and luxury objects. I am convinced that Jozef Kabaňwill guide this phenomenal team into a very bright future indeed.”

Kabaň is married with a daughter and a son and will be based at the company’s design studios in Goodwood, West Sussex and Munich.

 

REMARKS BY ROLLS-ROYCE CEO TORSTEN MÜLLER-ÖTVÖS

The following below is spoken from Rolls-Royce’s CEO himself Torsten Müller-Ötvös.

 

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Welcome to the House of Rolls-Royce here in Geneva!

Each year we come to Geneva to update you about our business and to share with you some truly special examples of our wonderful products.

And this year is no exception.

As the world’s pinnacle luxury brand, celebrating our 115th anniversary this year, we take great pride in these beautiful and precious items, lovingly handcrafted by the nearly 2000 people who work at the Home of Rolls-Royce at Goodwood.

This celebrated facility in West Sussex, is acknowledged as a global centre of luxury manufacturing excellence. It lies at the very heart of the Rolls-Royce success story.

Our Home is a very unique place – a creative oasis where we are constantly guided by the vision of our founding fathers, Charles Rolls and Henry Royce to “Strive for perfection in everything you do”.

Since 2003 every Rolls-Royce in the world has been created here.

Ladies and Gentlemen, at Rolls-Royce, our clients are our life-blood. They are our heroes and our friends and we are obsessively focused on providing for their needs and desires. For them, being within the warm embrace of the Rolls-Royce family is an unbelievable experience, like no other. And they are deeply appreciative of our hyper-centric attention to the smallest of details.

The Home of Rolls-Royce at Goodwood has become a must-visit destination for large numbers of our valued clients.

They come from around the world to specify their Rolls-Royces and to meet our designers, engineers and bespoke craftspeople.

Many return later to view their creation being built in our factory or to take delivery of their Rolls-Royce in our fully bespoke Customer Suite.

So, from Goodwood to Geneva, this year, we have brought some of the best examples of products for you view and to enjoy. They are all truly lovely!

We have our complete product offering on our stand today, led by the world’s most exclusive luxury product the Rolls-Royce Phantom, described by many of you in the media and by our customers as “the Best Car in the World”.

Phantom is at the core of our company’s success. It is a global expression of ultimate achievement and I am pleased to report that more and more of our younger customers are experiencing our Phantom short-wheelbase as a self-driver’s car.

Phantom is flanked by Ghost, now in its 10th year of production and still in strong demand around the world. Ghost is a global favorite among our powerful, entrepreneurial clients.

Then, we have brought from Goodwood examples of our two highly contemporary, seductive coupe models.

Wraith – here in its Black Badge guise – is the ultimate powerful and agile Grand Tourer. Edgy and menacing, Wraith appeals to our young clients who are trendsetting, cosmopolitan citizens of the world.

And then, Dawn, our truly beautiful sexy and seductive drophead coupe. Dawn is much loved by our more social, fun-loving customers who crave the sensual pleasure of open-air travel.

Finally, to complete our product line-up we are joined this year by our hugely successful Rolls-Royce Cullinan, our first SUV.

Cullinan was launched to great global acclaim last year and has received effusive headlines in the media and an enthusiastic welcome from our customers.

I am delighted to tell you that our forward orders for Cullinan stretch into the fourth quarter of this year.

We are in full production at our Goodwood factory and continue to make substantial investments, including the employment of an additional 200 associates, in order to meet this very pleasing customer demand.

I can confidently say today that Rolls-Royce is set on a continuous and successful growth trajectory.

And speaking of success, it is with great pride that I can tell you that 2018 was another exceptional year for Rolls-Royce.

We set an historic business record, achieving our highest annual sales in our marque’s 115-year history.

We delivered 4,107 cars to customers in over 50 countries around the world and in doing so achieved year-on-year sales growth in all regions. The Americas remained our largest market.

But at Rolls-Royce it’s not all about volume.

Our unique and successful business model focuses on preserving the rarity of our products, which is a key demand of our customers, while at the same time achieving record levels of profitability.

This, we believe, is the real hallmark of how a true luxury brand should be managed.

In this regard I am happy to report that the Rolls-Royce business generates pleasing profits and we continue to contribute to the bottom line of our shareholder, the BMW Group.

Ladies and Gentlemen, please take a close look at and enjoy all the fine Rolls-Royces on our stand. Each one contains unique and beautiful examples of our world- renowned Bespoke offerings.

No other manufacturer of luxury goods can equal customer personalization to this level.

Indeed, today more than ever, it is globally recognized that “Bespoke IS Rolls-Royce”.

To more fully understand our Bespoke offering, please do take a particularly close look at this beautiful Phantom Tranquillity.

Created for those who conceive and achieve the impossible, Tranquillity is an expression of Phantom’s standing as the rarest and most desired object in the luxury world.

The Tranquillity Collection is strictly limited to just 25 examples worldwide and I am pleased to tell you that they have already all been purchased by discerning Rolls- Royce collectors.

Look into the car and see the tasteful integration of wafer thin shavings of the Muonionalusta meteor that fell to earth in Sweden over a hundred years ago.

And enjoy the highly reflective stainless steel, 24 carat gold plating and space grade aluminium elements in the car.

This, ladies and gentlemen, is the contemporary Rolls-Royce of today – a 115 year old brand, completely relevant in the present and moving purposefully into the future. A vibrant, successful and sustainable business, providing the most discerning people in the world with the rarest and very best luxury products and service on Earth.

As for the future: well, as you can imagine, we are not standing still!

We are imagineering and already engineering an exciting future for Rolls-Royce. A future that will be fully electric, digital and technologically innovative while never overlooking our commitment to the custodianship of the great Rolls-Royce brand.

This is what our customers and the world expects of us and rest assured, this is what we will deliver.

But for now, thank you for listening and I invite you to join me and my colleagues on the stand for a closer look at our lovely cars.

Thank you.

Kamala Harris, Here’s A Taste of Your Own Medicine

By M. Marie Brown

Another snake slithers out of the swamp. If you wanted an antidote to Mr. Trump, this creature is not it. Please, someone over the age of 35 with ethics, step up!

In the meantime, in the interest of determining fitness for the job and as you say, “the American public deserves to know the character of someone who will serve” in an important federal office. We will follow the lead of your heraldedblunt” style that includes proudly publically reeling off George Carlin’s Seven Words You Can Never Say on Television” with the favorite being mother*****.

Let the questions begin!

1. Are you aware of the perception in certain communities that you got ahead by having sex with a married man twice your age?

It was a wide open secret that you were corrupt San Francisco politician Willie Brown’s “new steady” despite the fact that state assembly “Speaker for Life,” the “Ayatollah of the Assembly” was married, 60 (to your 29 years). What kind of person comes out publicly as his date at his 60th birthday party, despite his wife of 36 years being in attendance? Do you believe having your paramour’s wife discuss your affair with her husband would “offer a clearer picture into who you really are”? “Listen, she [Harris] may have him at the moment, but come inauguration day and he’s up there on the platform being sworn in, I’ll be the b***h holding the Bible.”

Just for the record, Brown appointed Harris—a young deputy district attorney in Alameda County—to high-profile, lucrative patronage positions on the state’s Unemployment Insurance Appeals Board (at $97,088 annually for two meetings a month) and the California Medical Assistance Commission netting her more than $400,000 between 1994 and 1999. And a shiny new BMW!

2. Are you aware of the perception by many political observers that your narrow win in the race for California Attorney General was, shall we say, questionable? Despite registered Democrats outnumbering Republicans statewide by thirteen percent, Los Angeles District Attorney Steve Cooley (endorsed by the Sacramento Bee, the state capitol’s newspaper) led you by 34,000 votes after more than 7 million were counted. Some observers believe there is “reliable information” that you spoke with someone in Sacramento and magically enough provisional ballot votes for you to eke out at 0.2 percent win appeared? Wait. “I think you’re thinking of someone and you don’t want to tell us.” “Be sure about your answer, ma’am.”

3. Are you aware of the perception by some that you were either a poor manager of the San Francisco DA’s office or amazingly willfully ignorant? We can take the word of a judge’s 26-page ruling that found that while San Francisco DA you violated defendants’ rights by hiding damaging information about a police drug lab technician suspected of stealing portions of cocaine samples that later led the San Francisco police to shut down an entire section of the lab.

One wonders about your honesty when asked about your knowledge of a top aide of yours for 14 years made a $400,000 gender harassment settlement: “I did not.” “Nope.” You never answered whether you believe the accuser since you had “not talked to her directly.” Her name was not Christine Ford, thus not to be believed unconditionally.

4. In a “search for the truth” would it be beneficial to hear the testimony of former San Francisco DA and State Justice Department employees who are undoubtedly credible and honest because they have nothing to gain? These deputies attorney general don’t see you as particularly committed to the work of the office. You were rarely sighted in Sacramento, where much of the Department of Justice is located. You spent much of your time in Los Angeles and San Francisco running for higher office.

5. If you are “For the people”, why would consumer advocates say, “She has no presence.” “She has no involvement. She has no leadership. You have no sense of her being out there on the front saying we’re charging forward to do what’s right.” Or those who think you are soft on public corruption because it might cause “friction” with fellow Democratic politicians or that you avoided privacy issues for fear of losing Silicon Valley support.

6. Were you aware that some people have the perception that you are a partisan tyrant who does not follow the will of the people? Like when without explanation, you did not enforce a citizen initiative passed by 70 percent of voters barring paroled sex offenders from living within 2,000 feet of schools and parks. And by assigning “egregiously unfair” descriptions to voter-sponsored citizen-driven initiatives that cast them in a bad light when they run counter to certain Democratic special interests. Propositions from pension reform to limiting tax increases that the people will never see because the sponsors withdrew them after you deceptively entitled them. Or that you demanded that conservative-leaning nonprofits file with your office unredacted donor lists—confidential information typically submitted only to the Internal Revenue Service—exposing supporters of such groups to the risk of disclosure and retaliation. Remember, as the ACLU said, the first target is rarely the last.

7. Surely, being fearless, you wouldn’t avoid the press. We know giving a straight answer regarding sanctuary cities is tough: “To be honest with you, San Francisco’s policy has changed in the last few years; I haven’t looked at the details, so I can’t comment on it. On the infamous illegal immigrant killer of Kate Steinle: “My reluctance to answer these questions [about Kate Steinle’s infamous killer]…is that I don’t actually know what happened…you’re talking about important details…and I don’t have any knowledge about what actually occurred.”

8. Were you aware that some people in the blogosphere have this perception about you? No dignity. No self-respect. Just naked ambition. She is vulgar, unprofessional, deceitful, two-faced, ambitious to the extreme. I pray to God that I never stoop to this level to either: A.) keep a man or B.) get power/money.

It was good of you to leave the posh Los Angeles Brentwood neighborhood where the median price of a home is $3,136,500 and has a black population of 1.7 percent and pose as an Obama wannabe by giving your big speech your “birthplace” Oakland although most of your youth was spent in Canada.

So we have a potty-mouthed incompetent phony who learned tricks at the knee of a California politician who is famous for being corrupt. If she were a white male she would be vilified. Sadly, in today’s world of check the right identity politics box, her greatest attribute is that she is an ethnic female.

But to this ethnic female, she is a total disgrace – not what our young women should aspire to.

*The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author’s.

BMW Exclusive

“Forget the legs and do everything with my hands,” said racing legend Alex Zanardi when asked how best to tackle the grueling, twice-around the clock Rolex 24 At Daytona. For his first US race since the 2001 crash that took his legs, Alex takes on yet another formidable challenge behind the wheel of a specially modified BMW M8 GTE.

Catch the action on NBCSN, NBCSports.com, and the NBC Sports App, January 26 and 27.

Get a sneak peek

Gearing up for the future.

BMW stunned attendees at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show with a look into an autonomous future—with the BMW Vision iNEXT. As part of a mixed reality experience, visitors were able to drive the iNEXT before the vehicle took over the wheel. Then, they could explore video conferencing, shopping, and more—guided by the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant.

See it now

Adventures, made in America.

Back in 1999, the BMW X5 was the first-ever X Model crafted at the BMW Plant in Spartanburg, SC. Now, 20 years later, the All-New BMW X5 has launched a new generation of X—and a new legacy of American-made adventures.

Start your adventure

A first look at the New 7.

Success is not a spectator sport. It’s a rush. A thrill almost as powerful as the New BMW 7 Series itself. Enjoy your exclusive first look at the 2019 7 Series, from all-new innovative features like a fully digital cockpit to the stunning new kidney grille. Expect a new chapter in the story of luxury.

Experience it

Your Winter House chariot awaits.

BMW is proud to partner once again with Chef Daniel Humm, restaurateur Will Guidara, and the team behind three-Michelin-starred Eleven Madison Park at EMP Winter House in Aspen. Their exciting new seasonal pop-up restaurant offers an incredible menu inspired by their new Aspen home as well as Chef Humm’s Swiss roots. Don’t miss this one-of-a-kind experience.

Hit the slopes

2019 PIRELLI CALENDAR SHOT BY ALBERT WATSON

A photographic tale of the aspirations of four women and their determination to achieve their goals, each one pursuing her own dreams and passions. This is “Dreaming”, the 2019 Pirelli Calendar, now in its forty-sixth edition, shot by Albert Watson in April in Miami and New York and unveiled today at Pirelli Hangar Bicocca in Milan.

A sequence of forty shots tells the stories of characters portrayed by Gigi Hadid with Alexander Wang, Julia Garner, Misty Copeland with Calvin Royal III and Laetitia Casta with Sergei Polunin. The photographs, in color and black and white, are in the cinematic 16:9 format, inspired by Albert Watson’s passion for the art of film.

When I approached this project,” says Watson, “I wanted to do it in a way that was different from other photographers, and I wondered what the best way would be. In the end, I looked for pictures that were of beautiful quality, with depth to them, and that had some kind of narrative. I wanted to create something that was more than just a portrait of somebody – I wanted it to look like a film still. I wanted people looking at the Calendar to see that my aim was photography in its purest form, exploring the women I was photographing and creating a situation that would convey a positive vision of women today.”

Telling the story of how he came to make the Calendar (see the interview attached), the photographer talks of his own dreams, and of the efforts and sacrifices that they entailed.

To make a dream come true, you have to work hard. I’ve always taken it step by step, reaching one goal at a time, without wanting to get immediately to the top of the ladder. Even though I sometimes think this ladder could go on up forever, with the top rung ever-further away, I think it’s always worth giving yourself increasingly ambitious goals and dreams.”

 

He said that each of the four women focuses on the future and “has her own individuality, her own particular purpose in life, and her own way of doing things. So the underlying theme is that of ‘dreams’, but the basic idea behind the whole project is that of telling a story in four ‘little movies’. What I wanted to convey were the protagonists’ hopes and their way of thinking about the future, in a way that would bring with it the aspect of dreaming.

An example of this is the character played by Gigi Hadid, he explained. She has recently separated from her partner, lives alone in a glass tower and has Alexander Wang as her only friend and confidant: “I think there’s a degree of angst in these images. With Hadid’s character, I wanted to convey the sense of a woman thinking about her future, but also showing her in a situation of loneliness. We see her thinking about where she is going to go in life, what she will be doing tomorrow. I wanted it to be much more minimalistic than the other women and settings I photographed.

Julia Garner plays the part of a young photographer who loves nature and solitude. Of her, Watson says; “Julia’s a very, very accomplished actress and she got straight into the character. She played a botanical photographer who dreams of putting on successful exhibitions. We were in a beautiful tropical garden in Miami, which turned out to be the perfect place for us to work.”

 

Misty Copeland, whose partner in the Calendar is Calvin Royal III, also looks to the future, fantasizing about making a name for herself in the world of dance. “Trying to be successful is her driving force,” said Watson. “Copeland’s character earns her living by dancing in a club, but at the same time she has also put up a little stage in her garden, where she practices dancing in order to become a star, sometimes with her boyfriend, played by Calvin Royal III.

Lastly, Laetitia Casta is a painter who lives in a studio apartment with her partner, played by Sergei Polunin. They both dream of success: she as an artist, he as a dancer. “What’s interesting”, says Watson, “is that, in real life, Laetitia really does do a lot of sculpting and creates artwork in her spare time. This worked out very well and helped her get into character. We decided to shoot outside, to give the scenes some added natural brightness. The tropical atmosphere of Miami is a key component in this picture.

 

Hyundai Invests in New Technology

Hyundai CRADLE, Hyundai Motor Company’s corporate venturing and open innovation business announced today its strategic investment in allegro.ai, a leading technology company specializing in deep learning (DL) – based computer vision. This partnership with allegro.ai will allow to speed up deployment of AI technology in many business areas. This will improve the quality of Hyundai’s products, thereby increasing customer satisfaction while creating a safer driving environment.

Founded in 2016, allegro.ai offers the first end-to-end DL lifecycle management solution focused on deep learning as it applies to computer vision. The company’s platform simplifies the process of developing and managing deep learning-powered solutions – such as autonomous vehicles, drones, security, logistics and others.

“Deep learning computer vision is one of the core technologies that can be applied to autonomous driving to navigate roads and make quick decisions in real-time – and allegro.ai is clearly an innovation leader in that field,” said Ruby Chen, Head of Investment at Hyundai CRADLE Tel Aviv. He added, “Our investment in allegro.ai is a further step in enhancing our presence in the Israeli market, a global leader of technological innovation in the fields of automation, artificial intelligence and deep learning. This is our fifth investment in an Israeli company and our activities will continue to grow the coming year”.

“We are proud to partner with Hyundai and share Hyundai’s belief that AI empowers the industry to provide greater road safety, autonomy, to better understand customers’ needs and to help broaden their experiences,” said Nir Bar-lev CEO and Co-founder of allegro.ai. “Whether a company is developing autonomous vehicles, drones, security, or other types of applications, allegro.ai makes it easy for them to manage their data-sets and build deep learning-based solutions while guaranteeing complete and confidential control of their data.

Check out their website HERE

Lexus UX, Vaughn Lowery, 360 MAGAZINE, Amazon headquarters, Seattle

LEXUS UX

By Alexandria Baiz × Vaughn Lowery

As of late, 360 Magazine had the opportunity to join Lexus in Seattle for an intimate ride and drive of their wholly-new UX SUV at the newly reimagined luxurious Loews Hotel 1000. This seaport city is home to both tech giants Microsoft and Amazon. With Lexus’s innovative track record for having unparalleled technology within their cabin, it was befitting that they brought us to the home of the Space Needle. Subsequently, this town is known to think outside of the box.

The 2019 Lexus UX takes a step into the future of modern luxury with its two most affordable and compact SUVs – the UX 200 and UX 250h. UX stands for urban crossover (x-over). The UX 200 will be released in December 2018 starting at $32,000 and the UX 250h will be released in January 2019 for around $34,000. Gearing towards an opulent compact car with an exterior design so specific, the UX has a signature three-dimensional shape that makes it different from its siblings.

The front has brow-shaped LED lights with optional ultra-small 3-projector LED units. Across the back of the boot, are an innovative wrap of three-dimensional LED lights which help with stability on the highways – a standout design element on the UX. The structure is built to mold into an everyday vehicle that is stable, perfect for urban use because it’s small and easy to park. We had no problem squeezing to the front of the Bainbridge ferry.

The 18″ 5-spoke aluminum alloy dark gray metallic wheels are proportional to the overall aesthetics of the vehicle. Available in a variety of twelve exterior colors, two of which are exclusive to the UX F Sport – Cadmium Orange and Nori Green. The Cadmium Orange includes a cherry base with yellow lowlights, making it appear vivid and adding tons of depth. Nori Green possesses bright highlights and dark contrast alongside of calm shades, drawing the color brilliant. Both of these colors are newfangled and daring for the Lexus brand.

The F Sport package is available in both the UX 200 and UX 250h model as well as has enhanced features and style which contributes to its name. This option comes in the two colors – Ultra White and Ultrasonic Blue Mica 2.0. The F Sport performance is exceptional, transforming the UX into a bespoke-like designer car with front sports seats, grille design, and jet-black trim.

The concept of UX stems from the versatility and adaptability this vehicle offers. With a seamless interior coupled with the Japanese concept of engawa offers a richer field of vision. Executed with a high-strength structure, placement of sound absorbing and insulating materials throughout, one can enjoy an extremely quiet ride.

The connection between driver and the vehicle is apparent with the “seat-in-control” concept. Entering and exiting is made easy with hip-point bottom cushions. 8-way power driver seats (including lunbar) allows the driver to operate with a comfortable yet natural posture.

All UX models are fabricated to ensure safety while driving. The Pre-Collision System alerts drivers of pedestrians, cyclists and other vehicles with a forward-facing camera and radar system. The LSS+ 2.0 system enhances this with specific light detection for different hours of the day. If the Pre-Collision System detects a high possibility of collision, an audio and visual alert will prompt the driver to take action. If the driver does not break at that point, the system may automatically apply brakes to help mitigate impacts. Dynamic Radar Cruise Control maintains a preset distance and operates between 0 to 110 mph. The Lane Departure Alert is extremely helpful with the Multi-Information Display (MID) the system can use forward-facing cameras to detect colored land marking illustrations. If the driver deviates from a visibly marked lane, the system alerts the driver with an audio and visual alert. In addition, the UX has an Electric Power Steering and Steering Assist. The Road Sign Assist can read a variety of traffic signs and will display them on the vehicle’s MID. Furthermore, Parking Support Brake uses braking control and visual warnings to reduce possible contact with moving objects while parking.

This Lexus is extraordinary with its high definition, intuitive technology, and overall performance. The UX includes a standard 7″ TFT (thin-film-transistor) LCD control panel while the UX F Sport features an 8″ TFT LCD panel design with a movable meter ring. By pressing a switch on the steering wheel, it moves to the right, enlarging the multi-information display. With the Lexus Remote Touch Interface, the 2019 UX feels as familiar as a smartphone. The most impressive tech feature is Amazon’s “Alexa” – which immediately connects you to play music; find directions; open your garage door on a rainy day; lock/unlock from a smart device and amongst other things control the lights in your home. The Lincoln Navigator is the only other vehicle in Northern America which offers Alexa. Moreover, additional driver connectivity features include Apple CarPlay, 4GB Wi-Fi Hotspot, Voice recognition for commands and the SiriusXM. The heads-up display allows drivers to focus more on the road and less on the infotainment unit.

The UX complies with the global trend of efficient gas mileage vehicles – UX 200 at 33 mpg (2.0- liter inline four-cylinder engine, similar to competitors but with less under-hood heat and lower weight for better vehicle balance). The UX 250h at 39 mpg, making it the wave of their next generation of hybrids. With 181 hp, the UX 250h is the fuel-efficient leader with the best-combined mpg of any CUV and/or SUV without a plugin NA.

In short, the Lexus UX 200 and UX 250h is a shoo-in for a ‘xennial’ buyer – a person who grew up in an analog environment and can easily adapt to present-day’s digital society. Just think of all of your friends and family members with a recent graduate degree or higher residing in a metropolis. Most likely they have a high appreciation for the arts and take local trips within their surrounding area with one or more cronies and a small lap dog in tow.

The Work-To-Weekend Luxury SUV

Practicality meets luxury with the 2018 GX 460 SUV, a work-to-weekend warrior that’s as at home on the trail as it is in the city or suburbs. Underscoring the three-row GX 460’s all-weather capability and comfort that seats up to seven passengers, the heated/ventilated front seats are available as a standalone option for the base model (standard on the Premium and Luxury models). In addition, the top-line GX 460 now offers captain’s chairs for the second-row seating in the Sport Design Package.

The Lexus signature spindle grille gives the GX 460 a distinctive, standout style. The Sport Design Package puts an extra accent on that design with special details such as an exclusive front bumper, rear bumper spoiler, special exhaust tailpipe tip, a redesigned side mirror case, scarlet tail lamps and unique 18-inch split-six spoke alloy wheels.

One Vehicle, Two Ways Easy maneuverability and the comfort of the GX 460 make it an ideal contender for the modern family. A dual-purpose vehicle, the luxury SUV can go from the office to an active, demanding 4×4 environment on the weekend without looking out of place. The standard and sole engine is a 301-horsepower 4.6-liter V8 that issues 329 lb.-ft. of peak torque. Combine that with 6,500-lb. towing capacity, and you’ve got an ideal boat hauler. Towing is aided with Trailer Sway Control, a function of the Vehicle Stability Control that enhances straight-line tracking.

A key to the GX 460’s dual personalities is its standard Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System (KDSS), which helps to significantly reduce body lean without resorting to stiffer springs and dampers. Lexus made the stabilizer bars stiffer to help reduce maximum body-lean angle by as much as 50 percent. Hydraulic cylinders act on each stabilizer bar, and linked by a pressure-sensing valve, they continually vary the lean resistance. During on-road cornering, when both front and rear hydraulic cylinders are in a neutral position, no fluid flows in the system and the stabilizer bars work conventionally to help reduce body lean.

Driving in off-road situations, KDSS is designed to reduce sway resistance, which allows the wheels to move with a larger degree of side-to-side independence. When the GX 460 encounters an uneven surface, one compressed cylinder causes fluid to flow to the other cylinder, helping the vehicle to keep all four wheels on the ground. The system works without any action needed by the driver.

The GX 460 has another ace up its fender for on-road smoothness. Available Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS) uses electronically controlled dampers that adjust to road surface conditions. The driver can tailor ride and handling characteristics by selecting from among Normal, Sport or Comfort modes.
In today’s world, a full-capability SUV means the ability to casually traverse highways and grocery store parking lots while also offering the ability for an off-road excursion. That’s why the Lexus GX 460 uses a full-time automatic four-wheel drive system that can enhance everyday handling on the pavement as well as on the trails.

A Torsen® torque-sensing limited slip center differential distributes power 40:60 under most driving conditions and changes the ratio as needed based on wheel slip. The system offers a low range for off-road driving, and the center differential can be electronically locked.

Driving through a curve on pavement, for example, the Torsen differential can change the torque split to 30:70 to enhance vehicle tracking. If wheels spin, the center differential can change the ratio to 50:50 to help control slippage. The system can respond to sudden changes in road-surface conditions, such as driving through a puddle or over an ice patch. A two-speed transfer case with low range is supported by a wide array of chassis control technology. With Downhill Assist Control (DAC), Hill-start Assist Control (HAC), Active Traction Control (A-TRAC), Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) and available Crawl Control, the GX 460 has the ability to roam unpaved, uneven trails and steep inclines.

In some off-road conditions, where the driver might have a hard time knowing which direction the front wheels are pointing – the GX 460 comes with a standard steering angle indicator in the gauge panel. A-TRAC provides the traction benefits of having locking front and rear differentials, but with lower weight. The system can apply the brake to a slipping wheel, while transferring torque to the wheels with better traction.

Trail drivers who encounter steep and rocky hills know well the skill and concentration needed to manipulate the throttle, brake and steering to help keep the vehicle moving forward securely. The GX 460 makes it easier with available Crawl Control, which automatically modulates the throttle and brake, allowing the driver to concentrate on steering.

Engaged when the vehicle is in low range, Crawl Control allows the vehicle to move forward or in reverse at one of five driver-selectable low-speed settings. Crawl Control also engages the front and rear “virtual” locking differentials to help reduce tire slippage and optimize chassis behavior. Crawl Control can also help the driver navigate the GX 460 through sand, mud or snow.

The GX 460’s multimedia system is a multitasker, offering a customizable home screen that can display three sections simultaneously. For example, you can view a single display (navigation/map), dual display (navigation/map + audio, compass or other function) or three displays on the same screen (navigation/map + audio + weather). The available Navigation System’s three-dimensional map view makes it an even more effective driving partner. The touch-screen Display Audio uses an eight-inch screen that includes a backup camera, HD RadioTM, Bluetooth® audio, automatic phone book transfer, a vehicle information display and complimentary traffic and weather data provided via HD Radio.

The system also incorporates cache radio, which can pause live radio, recording up to 15 minutes of broadcast for later playback. Drivers with an iPhone ® (iPhone 4S and later) can get things done just by asking through standard Siri® Eyes Free Mode. Siri lets you call contacts, select and play music from iTunes®, get turn-by-turn navigation through Siri and Apple® maps, and much more.

The Lexus GX 460 also goes above and beyond with safety features. Technologies that exemplify the brand’s forward thinking are found in the optional Driver Support Package, which includes the Pre-Collision System (PCS), Driver Attention Monitor, Lane Departure Alert (LDA), Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, Outside Rear View Mirror (camera + Blind Spot Monitor indicator) and a Wide-view Front and Side Camera that is designed to enhance visibility in tight settings and around corners. Dynamic Radar Cruise Control uses millimeter-wave radar to measure and help maintain a pre-set following distance from a vehicle traveling ahead.

The Driver Attention Monitor helps to address a growing safety concern, that of driver inattention. The innovative system uses a camera to monitor the orientation of the driver’s face. If it determines that the driver is not facing forward when an obstacle is detected by PCS, a warning chime and a warning display convey alerts. If the driver doesn’t respond as the vehicle closes on the obstacle, the next level of warning is PCS gently applying the brakes. At the same time, the system automatically retracts the front seat belts and prepares the brake system to respond with increased force when you apply the brake pedal.

By monitoring visible lane markings, Lane Departure Alert can detect unintentional lane departure and sound a warning buzzer and display a visual alert. Also part of the Driver Support Package, Intelligent High Beam brings courtesy and safety to the road by automatically switching high beams to low when meeting oncoming vehicles or approaching vehicles from the rear.

When equipped with the available Navigation System, the GX 460 also comes with a one-year complimentary subscription to Lexus Enform Destination Assist, and the subscription-free Lexus Enform App Suite.

These voice-enabled apps let you search the Internet through Destination Search, make restaurant reservations through OpenTable®, order movie tickets via MovieTickets.com, listen to Internet radio (including Pandora®, iHeartRadioTM and Slacker), and search business reviews on Yelp®.

The 2018 GX 460 includes Lexus Enform® Safety Connect featuring Automatic Collision Notification, Stolen Vehicle Location, Emergency Assist Button, Enhanced Roadside Assistance and Lexus Enform Safety Connect and Lexus Enform Destination Assist (includes a complimentary one-year subscription). Lexus drivers can also opt in for Lexus Enform Service Connect with a complimentary one-year subscription included. This service allows customers to remotely view information about certain aspects of their Lexus vehicle via the MyLexusandBeyond mobile application for iOS smartphone users or LexusDrivers.com for others.

Information includes maintenance alerts, warning light notifications and a vehicle health report that includes email and push notifications for diagnostic information, required maintenance reminders, current vehicle alerts, service campaigns, and more. Available Lexus Enform Remote (one-year subscription included) allows the owner to remotely view and control certain vehicle features using a mobile app for iOS and Android devices. Key features include remote door lock/unlock, remote stop/start for the engine and climate control, vehicle finder, guest driver monitor and more.

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CULLINAN

CHANGE IS GOOD.

by Vaughn Lowery

As of late, Rolls-Royce invited a slew of journalists and digital influencers from around the globe to test out their newly introduced SUV. Jackson Hole, Wyoming is notably recognized for it’s elite residents and celebrity visitors alike, including Kanye West, Sandra Bullock and Harrison Ford. Yet, this time around the Snow King Resort and one of its steepest slopes had become acquainted with the Cullinan. Not the largest rough diamond found in South Africa in 1905 but the manufacturer’s first-ever sport utility vehicle. Yes, we couldn’t conceive that a Rolls could ever climb a mountain but seeing is believing.

As we ascended to the top with the 6000 lb gem, she started to metamorphose from a stately Caterpillar into bodacious butterfly. We went over unpaved trails and ruts all the way to the summit (8010 ft above sea level) for pastries and coffee. On the way down with merely a switch of a button we descended with ease over gravel and dirt all while being enamored by the Spirit of Ecstacy with her wings throwing caution to the wind.

On the road, we felt every bit of 563 hp (627 lb-ft torque @ 1600 rpm) as we swiveled through the two-lane main road with minimal traffic. Just as graceful as her siblings and as celebrated as the Phantom we witnessed tons of townies gawk at her effortless design and styling. Her grill kept in line with the overall DNA of the brand but its standard 22″ part polished shadow wheels matched her midnight sapphire exterior nicely.

Our deep scarlet red leather interior was enunciated with the usual technology and innovation of their BMW iDrive-inspired infotainment system as seen in the Ghost; however, in the back we had separate seats and access to tablet-like screens which erupted by the touch of a button. Along the back top panels were buttons to dial up or down the 22-speaker bespoke sound system which mimicked an IMAX theater. We bopped around the back in comfort and chit chatted with no outside noise due to their 200 lbs of sound-deadening insulation and privacy glass which lurks behind your head.

Like most automobiles in this segment, her dual-pane sunroof opened up wide enough for you to want to hop up and cleave your head out while screaming all the way to prom. Our model didn’t feature the tailgate retractable seats; but nonetheless this vehicle will most likely end up at some stadium for playoffs with a chilled champagne bottle and scotch in the back middle console with custom etched snifters.

This vehicle’s MSRP is $325,000 but our model tested was approximately $400,000. Is the price worth it? Hell yes! After all, this is the first in its family, which can conform to most terrains and excursions. Go figure, the youngest in its batting order can be used to pick the kids up from school, off-road and be chauffeured to Rihanna’s Annual Diamond Ball. It’s highly probable you may see this truck at a Costco’s as well as Jay-Z and Beyonce’s next On The Run tour. Having said that, this is most decidedly one of Rolls-Royce’s more practical vehicles as it will and can be used on an everyday basis. With its dynamic all-terrain capabilities, safety features and height, you’ll have more command of the road that any of its tribe members.

Order the Cullinan

Rolls-Royce, 360 MAGAZINE, Vaughn Lowery

Rolls-Royce, 360 MAGAZINE, Vaughn Lowery

Rolls-Royce, 360 MAGAZINE, Vaughn Lowery

Rolls-Royce, 360 MAGAZINE, Vaughn Lowery

Rolls-Royce, 360 MAGAZINE, Vaughn Lowery

Rolls-Royce, 360 MAGAZINE, Vaughn Lowery

Rolls-Royce, 360 MAGAZINE, Vaughn Lowery

J.D. Power × Multimedia × Satisfaction Study

In-Car Multimedia Technology Still Vexes Vehicle Owners, but Some Automakers Showing Strong Improvement, J.D. Power Finds

In-car multimedia technology, perennially the leading source of complaints among new-vehicle owners, is still a sore spot for customer satisfaction, but is improving. According to the J.D. Power 2018 Multimedia Quality and Satisfaction Study,SM the number of reported problems with in-car audio, communication, entertainment and navigation (ACEN) technologies has decreased for a third consecutive year, with several technology standouts emerging among manufacturers.

The study measures the experiences and opinions of vehicle owners regarding the quality, design and features of their ACEN system in the first 90 days of ownership. Multimedia system quality is determined by the number of problems experienced per 100 vehicles (PP100), with a lower score reflecting higher quality.

Top-performing vehicles in each segment are as follows:

• Small Mass Market: Kia Rio

• Compact Mass Market: Kia Forte

• Midsize Mass Market: Ford Mustang

• Large Mass Market: Ford Taurus

• Small Premium: BMW 2 Series

• Compact Premium: Porsche 718

• Midsize Premium: Lincoln Continental

• Large Premium: BMW 7 Series

“In-car multimedia has been a problematic category for automakers for several years, as ever-more elaborate navigation, voice recognition and entertainment systems have proliferated in vehicles of every type,” said Brent Gruber, Senior Director, Automotive Quality Practice, J.D. Power. “While the area is still the leading cause of new-vehicle complaints—with voice recognition technology continuing to lead the way as the number one complaint for a sixth consecutive year—we are seeing some serious improvement across the board, with some manufacturers really raising the bar on delivering quality multimedia technology experiences for their customers.”

Data for the annual Multimedia Quality and Satisfaction Study is derived from each year’s J.D. Power Vehicle Quality Survey (VQS). The data is augmented with supplier sourcing information where available, which affords multimedia suppliers with a comprehensive view of the overall multimedia industry, as well as the performance of individual products and systems, and problems that owners experience.

J.D. Power is a global leader in consumer insights, advisory services and data and analytics. These capabilities enable J.D. Power to help its clients drive customer satisfaction, growth and profitability. Established in 1968, J.D. Power is headquartered in Costa Mesa, Calif., and has offices serving North/South America, Asia Pacific and Europe. J.D. Power is a portfolio company of XIO Group, a global alternative investments and private equity firm headquartered in London, and is led by its four founders: Athene Li, Joseph Pacini, Murphy Qiao and Carsten Geyer.