automotives

Commercial electric vehicles to help lift global sales

SINGAPORE (May 20): The march of electric vehicles (EVs), is advancing at a steady clip, with commercial vehicles starting to grow significantly in addition to passenger vehicles. EVs are on track to dominate global sales of passenger cars and buses by 2040, and to encroach significantly on the market for vans and short-distance trucking, according to the Electric Vehicle Outlook 2019 report by research firm BloombergNEF (BNEF).

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The fourth edition of the A-Class by Mercedes-Benz has been tweaked to make it even more appealing

Ascendas-Singbridge properties to house public EV charging network with help from SP Group

SINGAPORE (Jan 21): Ascendas-Singbridge Group is appointed as Singapore Power (SP) Group’s first major location partner in its plans to build “Singapore’s largest and fasted public EV charging network” with 1,000 charging points island-wide by 2020.

Under the partnership, 24 charging points were installed in six buildings owned by Ascendas-Singbridge – Hyflux Innovation Centre at  80 Bendemeer Road, Corporation Place, Techlink, Techplace I, The Capricorn and The Kendall – with operations commencing in phases since Dec 2018.  

Head Turner

SINGAPORE (Nov 26): It is hard to believe that a sharply dropping roof line can make a car look so good. But that is exactly the case with the new Audi A7 Sportback. Viewed from any angle, this newly designed roof line grabs your attention with its sleek and sporty look. The designers at Audi have clearly spent a long time labouring over the shape of this relaunched four-door coupé, and it has paid off. Their aim was to reinforce Audi’s design language using large surfaces, sharp edges and alternating light and shadows.

Yoma Strategic subsidiary opens Myanmar's first Ducati showroom

SINGAPORE (Apr 2): Yoma Strategic Holdings says deemed subsidiary, SGG Motor Services, has opened Myanmar’s Ducati motorcycle showroom at 35th Street, Mandalay.

Featuring a full range of Ducati models including Monster and the Panigale V4 superbike, the facility also comes with a fully-equipped Ducati-approved service centre, which Yoma says is also the first of its kind in the country.  

DBS partners local startups to launch online automotive direct-selling platform

SINGAPORE (Aug 10): DBS Bank today announced the official launch of DBS Car Marketplace, an online consumer marketplace that matches automotive buyers and sellers, in partnership with online startup sgCarMart and used-car marketplace Carro.

This follows the Monetary Authority of Singapore’s (MAS) recently-announced proposal in June to allow banks to operate digital platforms that match buyers and sellers of consumer goods or services.

Malaysia eyes sale of Proton as Mahathir's auto power dream dies

KUALA LUMPUR (May 17): In its day, automaker Proton Holdings was a source of national pride and the centerpiece of a bold strategy by Mahathir Mohamad, Malaysia’s leader for more than two decades, to turn his country into an industrialised powerhouse equal to Asian Tigers like South Korea and Taiwan.

The former prime minister founded the company in 1983, calling its first sedan, the Saga, an icon of “national dignity.”

The cost of a Tesla is about to rocket in Hong Kong

HONG KONG (March 31): Calvin Zhang was getting tired of his Maserati. The Italian sports car spent too much time with the mechanic and guzzled too much gasoline.

That bothered the Hong Kong investment banker, who’s also a trustee for the local World Wide Fund for Nature branch. So he replaced his Maserati with a Tesla Inc. Model S, capitalizing on a law exempting electric vehicles from a tax on the purchase price that can reach 115%.

Now Zhang, 45, is so hooked on the Tesla he doesn’t pay attention to the rest of his luxury fleet.

Singaporeans become Uber drivers to get around high car prices

SINGAPORE (March 17): In one of the most expensive countries in the world to own a car, Peter Chiu is finding a novel way to pay for one.

The 58-year-old retired policeman rents a car in Singapore, drives three to four hours a day for Uber Technologies Inc. to cover its cost, and has a shiny Honda Vezel the rest of the time for his personal use. Hiring a vehicle to work for Uber is becoming a more common sight in the city-state, where Chiu’s SUV costs more than a BMW M3 luxury sports sedan does in New York.

Temasek joins China’s Mobike as new strategic investor

SINGAPORE (Feb 20): Mobike has received new strategic investment from state-owned investment holding firm Temasek, in addition to that of existing investor Hillhouse Capital, a China investment firm.

The China based bike-sharing company officially launched in Shanghai last year in April, and has expanded to 21 cities across China ever since.

In a release on Monday, Mobike says the direct equity investment is a first for Temasek, whose subsidiary, Vertex Ventures, led Mobike’s Series B+ round in 2016.

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