Sure, some of you might spend $46,000 on a car, but would you spend that much on luggage?
Rolls-Royce, a brand known for providing customers with luxurious travel experiences, has stepped up its luxury quotient with the debut of its Wraith Luggage Collection priced at $45,858.
The set is designed to fit in the luggage compartment of the Wraith. It contains two Grand Tourer valises, three Long Weekender bags and one Garment Carrier. You can choose between a mono- or two-tone leather finish that will match the interior of your vehicle. Each piece features the Rolls-Royce emblem and will be hand-stitched with thread matching the inside of your vehicle.
The collection is available now at Rolls-Royce dealerships. If you want to slowly throw your money out the window, you can purchase one piece at a time.
Lithium-ion cells and the battery packs that hold them are the single most costly part of modern electric cars.
And how fast their costs will fall remains the defining factor in making those cars affordable for the mass market.
GM made waves last fall when product chief Mark Reuss said the company will pay $145 per kilowatt-hour for the cells in the battery pack of the 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV that will roll out at the end of this year.
In the race for driverless car technology, Chinese companies are taking big strides competing with the likes of Google and Tesla.
With the Beijing Motor Show under way, the days when the country’s domestic car firms was brushed off as mere copycats are well and truly over.
And a lot of this year’s buzz is around driverless cars in particular.
In past years, innovation might have come from Silicon valley, but Chinese companies are pushing ahead.
“There is a lot more going on in China than many in the West have realised,” car expert Prof David Bailey of the Aston Business School tells the BBC.
Who are the big players?
- Changan: Two driverless cars drove more than 2,000km (1,240 miles) from its headquarters to Beijing using cameras and radar to complete the trip in six days – the car firm says it was able to do research on lane-keeping and changing, traffic sign recognition, automatic cruising and voice control.
- Baidu and BMW: A cooperation between Chinese tech giant Baidu and German car maker BMW saw a driverless car drive 30km through Beijing traffic, managing a range of manoeuvres, including U-turns, lane changes and merging into traffic from ramps.
- Geely and Volvo: Chinese owned Swedish car maker Volvo says it plans to test 100 driverless cars on public roads in “everyday conditions”. It is thought to be a significant move to establish the Sino-Swedish team at the forefront of development. Volvo is also testing driverless cars in Sweden and the UK.
Johnny Herbert expects Lewis Hamilton to return to the top of the podium at odds-against for the first time in this weekend’s Russian Grand Prix.
While Hamilton has struggled, team-mate Nico Rosberg has made a flying start to this season’s Drivers’ Championship with a hat-trick of victories in Australia, Bahrain and Shanghai.
The German driver has already established a 36-point lead over his Mercedes team-mate and is now the bookies’ odds-on favourite to win a first world title.
Swedish carmaker Volvo plans to run driverless car trials on public roads around London from next year.
Initially the cars will be semi-autonomous, with real families travelling in them.
Similar trials will run in the Swedish city Gothenburg.
Drive Me London, as the trial is dubbed, will record data from these everyday journeys to help develop the technology and adapt it to real-world conditions.
Details of which roads the cars will be tested on are not yet known. The trial is due to expand in 2018 from a handful of autonomous cars to 100, making it the largest of its kind in the UK.
“Autonomous driving (AD) represents a leap forward in car safety,” said Håkan Samuelsson, president of Volvo Cars.
“The sooner AD cars are on the roads, the sooner lives will start being saved.”
This sumptuous limo is not just a stretched S-class with a Maybach badge—it’s far more lavish than that ordinary sedan. A 523-hp, 6.0-liter twin-turbo V-12 provides effortless motivation while passengers enjoy hot-stone massaging, leather recliners. Touted as the world’s quietest car and with a standard Burmester audio system, the S600 is a rolling concert hall as well. And forget that new-car smell—the air-filtration system infuses the cabin with the Maybach’s own signature fragrance.
Alongside Google’s self-driving cars, technology companies have recognised the value of “mobility” as a market in the future.
It is estimated the traditional car market is globally worth about £1.6 trillion in revenues every year.
Add to that all the other forms of road based ground transport – taxis, car sharing, Uber-style businesses, bikes, buses, coaches – and the market increases to £3.8 trillion.
And Mr Fields would quite like a chunk of that.
I ask him whether the biggest threat to his company comes from General Motors or Google.
“There are a lot of traditional competitors that we have in our business who we know and we respect,” he said.
“There are a lot of new non-traditional competitors who are looking at the automotive space and looking at that addressable market and saying ‘gee can we get a piece of that’.
“We are viewing that as an opportunity not as a threat and there will be some things [we can do] on our own to be able to satisfy those customer needs that technology enables.
“And at other times we will partner with others and that’s the reason we set up a big research and innovation centre in Palo Alto because we want to collaborate with and participate in that environment.”