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The new Ford Kuga is equipped with a clever Disconnect feature that uses artificial intelligence to switch off the crossover’s all-wheel drive system in favorable driving conditions, thus boosting fuel efficiency.

If your Kuga or Kuga Hybrid is in need of extra grip, the system will re-engage faster than the blink of an eye. According to Ford, AWD disconnect could deliver a fuel saving of roughly 6.5 per cent simply by switching to FWD when appropriate.

“All-wheel drive isn’t just for heading off-road – the extra traction can make journeys smoother, safer and less stressful for drivers, particularly in wintry conditions,” said Kuga chief program engineer Glen Goold. “We designed our new Kuga Hybrid to help drivers save on fuel costs, and the artificial intelligence of AWD disconnect means they can do exactly that while still getting all the benefits of Intelligent All-Wheel Drive.”

Read: Ford Europe Launches Kuga Hybrid With 187 HP And Up To 620 Miles Of Driving Range

The Kuga’s Intelligent All-Wheel Drive system uses information from sensors to continually monitor which wheels have the best traction. Power is then distributed between the front and rear wheels, with adjustments taking less than 20 milliseconds. If the front wheels are left without any traction, the system can even send 100% of power to the rear wheels.

All these decisions are made using a dedicated electronic brain and a fuzzy logic algorithm, which is able to determine whether power to the rear wheels can be disconnected completely.

“Fuzzy logic refers to the algorithm, which can take into account all sorts of variables before making a decision, just as you or I might do when deciding what to wear based on the weather forecast, the time of year, looking outside and where we’re going,”said Scott Beiring, Ford’s driveline applications supervisor.

“For Kuga, that means Intelligent All-Wheel Drive won’t engage just because the windscreen wipers are on. The algorithm takes into account information from a number of sensors before deciding whether or not to engage, but does so much faster than any human could.”


Gymkhana is back as Subaru and Hoonigan have teamed up to release Gymkhana 2020.

Starring Travis Pastrana and an 862 hp (643 kW / 874 PS) WRX STI, the video was filmed in Annapolis, Maryland and features plenty of action-packed stunts.

While the clip starts off slow, the action begins at the one minute mark as Pastrana speeds through Annapolis and jumps over a Hoonigan speedboat. He then drifts around a parking lot, while ‘punting’ footballs held by inflatable crabs.

Also Read: This Flame-Spitting Subaru WRX STI Will Star In Gymkhana 11 Alongside Travis Pastrana

Pastrana races off and performs a series of donuts with another person in a 2022 BRZ. He then drifts around a shipyard and hangs a wheel over the edge of a pier.

From there, Pastrana heads to the airport for some stunts with a single engine plane. The clip ends shortly thereafter as he races home at speeds in excess of 150 mph (241 km).

The video features some impressive action and Pastrana said “Making my first Gymkhana video has been an incredible experience! I’m so thrilled to finally have the chance to do it, especially in my hometown, so I could bring these ideas I’ve had for years to life.”

As for the car, it’s a one-off model purpose-built by Subaru Motorsports USA and Vermont SportsCar. It features a carbon fiber body and a stripped out interior, which enables the model to weigh just 2,623 lbs (1,190 kg). That’s 800+ lbs (363+ kg) less than the stock WRX STI and it enables the model to have a power-to-weight ratio of 3.0 lbs / hp.

 

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Hyundai has announced a recall impacting 128,948 vehicles in the United States.

According to the South Korean car manufacturer, 2015-2016 Veloster, 2012 Santa Fe, 2011-2013 Sonata Hybrid, and 2016 Sonata Hybrid vehicles have connecting rod bearings that can wear prematurely.

The recall notice reveals that a manufacturing issue is to blame for the potentially faulty connecting rod bearings. If the rod bearing fails, the connecting rod and piston could puncture the engine block and dump hot oil onto various components in the engine bay, increasing the risk of a fire. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says the issue was caused by machining debris in the manufacturing process that may restrict oil flow.

Read Also: Hyundai Drops Pricing On Facelifted 2021 Santa Fe, Starts From $28,025

The issue affects the aforementioned vehicles fitted with 1.6-liter, 2.0-liter and 2.4-liter engines. Hyundai says owners of said vehicles may hear strange knocking sounds from the engine and see various warning lights on the dashboard.

Hyundai Velosters involved in the recall were produced from May 26, 2014 through to July 13, 2016 while Santa Fes were built between January 10, 2012 and July 3, 2012, Sonatas built between June 2, 2010 through December 17, 2013, and newer Sonatas manufactured February 25, 2015 through April 25, 2016.

Hyundai will notify owners of affected vehicles and conduct an engine inspection test to look for any bearing damage. If the bearing is damaged, an new engine will be fitted at no cost to the owner. All impacted vehicles will also receive an enhanced engine control software update with a Knock Sensor Detection System which continuously monitors engine vibrations for unusual patterns that could indicate an abnormal condition with the engine.