Motoring Newsbriefs

Mazda CX-60 (5)
Mazda CX-60 (4)
MGZS EV Trophy, 2021, front
Volkswagen Caddy California
Volkswagen Caddy California bed
Skoda Enyaq Coupe iV vRS, 2022, front
Czinger C21
Fiat 500 EV, 2021, front

NEW SCHEME FOR CALIFORNIA DREAMERS

CUSTOMERS will be able trial the new Volkswagen Caddy California for a week for £499, with no obligation to buy, the rental fee being offered as a discount on any future purchase.

The initiative comes from Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles which is offering the ‘Try Before You Buy' scheme to allow customers to experience the Caddy California, which offers variable living, sleeping and storage space for everyday life and travelling.

It features a foldable bed with cup springs and high-quality mattress that is stored in the parcel shelf and opens out above the rear seats.

There is seating for five, with the second row entirely removable for complete flexibility, while a standalone tail-tent - providing additional living space and sleeping compartment - is available as an accessory.

A retractable mini-kitchen is included as standard, extending from the rear with a single-burner cooker and integrated gas bottle

To secure a booking through the new scheme, prospective buyers need to visit the VWFS Rent-a-Car websiteand reserve a slot, before picking the compact camper up from a local Van Centre.

David Hanna, head of sales operations at Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, said: "The Caddy California is our newest entry into the camping segment and means we can now provide a camper for every budget and adventure.

"We know it's a one-of-its-kind model that people won't have experienced before, so we want to offer customers the chance to find out just how special it is for themselves."

FAST-CHARGING BOOST FOR POLESTAR

POLESTAR has made its first financial investment as a company, investing in extreme fast charging battery technology innovator StoreDot.

StoreDot is pioneering the development of silicon-dominant extreme fast charging batteries for electric vehicles.

And the Israel-based company aims to produce batteries for EVs capable of charging up to 160 km of range in just five minutes by 2024.

Its advanced battery technology aligns with Polestar's strategy of leveraging broader innovative industry partners to drive advancements in electric mobility.

Polestar chief Thomas Ingenlath said: "Polestar can help shape the development of new battery technology for the automotive industry and provide invaluable insights from the perspective of a brand focused on performance and sustainability."

As part of the strategic deal, Polestar is collaborating with StoreDot to explore adapting and applying their technology to proof-of-concept Polestar cars.

Test cases already being explored include customising StoreDot's cell technology for Polestar cars to enable faster charging and improved circularity.

ELECTRIC ARIYA IS POLES APART

NISSAN has announced a partnership with Scottish adventurer Chris Ramsey to undertake the world's-first all-electric driving adventure from the magnetic North Pole to the South Pole.

Departing next March, the Pole to Poleexpedition will see Ramsey and team in a Nissan Ariya e-4ORCEtravel over 27,000 kilometres across several regions and continents with predicted temperatures ranging from -30â°C to 30â°C.

Ramsey will be the first person to drive from pole to pole in a vehicle of any type as he makes his way from the Arctic through North, Central and South America, before crossing to Antarctica.

The adventure supports Nissan Ambition 2030, the company's long-term vision to empower mobility and beyond with electrification as a central focus and aims to deliver exciting vehicles and technologies.

In preparation for the freezing conditions, Ramsey's expedition Ariya e-4ORCE will be modified with a custom rugged exterior fit for the trek across extreme terrain with upgraded wheels, tyres and suspension. A second, unmodified Nissan Ariya e-4ORCE will act as a support vehicle throughout the Americas.

INDUSTRY CALL FOR CHARGEPOINT VAN PLAN

MOREthan half of van owners say they are discouraged from switching to an electric van due to a lack of chargepoint infrastructure, according to new research from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders.

An SMMT survey bySavanta ComResfound that 57 per cent of people who own or lease a van in the UK are worried that they wouldn't be able to find a public charging point when they need it.

Persuading van drivers to switch to zero emission vehicles is essential if Britain is to become Net Zero while keeping the nation on the move as vans directly support around one in 10 workers in Britain.

More than a third of all new van models now on sale come with a plug following billions of pounds of investment by manufacturers, investment which has delivered massively improved payloads and battery range.

But despite electric van uptake doublingin the last year, these vehicles still account for just one in 20 new van registrations - meaning the market is currently about two years behind that of cars, where uptake of zero emission cars is closer to one in five.

With vans facing the same 2035 end of sale date for non-zero emission vehicles as cars, however, the automotive sector is calling on all stakeholders to match its commitment to drive the electric transition.

SMMT chief Mike Hawes said: "Britain's businesses run on vans and if we're to deliver the nation's carbon emission cuts, we need them to move to electric.

"There's an electric van to suit every business case, but we need a ‘van plan' to ensure zero-emission driving works for the millions of people for whom their van is their livelihood and the millions more who rely on these workhorses for the delivery of their daily needs."

POLARIS TARGETS THE YOUTH MARKET

POLARIS has announced an extension to its youth retail promotion throughout the summer months meaning customers will receive £300 including VAT off the recommended retail price of any new Youth model.

With more families opting for staycations this summer, the offer will be available on purchases made between June 1 and August 31 - ideal timing for customers to make the most of the upcoming UK summer holidays.

The promotion applies to the entire Polaris Youth line-up, including the Youth side-by-side range; the Ranger 150 EFI and RZR 200 EFI, and the ATV line-up; the Outlaw 70 EFI, Sportsman 110 EFI, and Pheonix 200.

Every Polaris youth model has safety at the forefront and comes standard with a starter kit that includes a youth helmet, whip flag and training DVD.

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