- Italian carmaker showed off its small SUV, the Tonale, a car it hopes will compete with its German rivals who have been selling smaller premium SUVs for the past decade
- The new model sits below the Stelvio SUV and is the first car to go on sale equipped with an NFT (non-fungible token) digital certificate, the NFT stores all the car's build specifications
- A plug-in hybrid 205kW version with all-wheel drive will headline the Tonale range, Alfa says an electric range of 80 kilometres is available
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Alfa Romeo's new Tonale SUV is big news. Firstly, it grabs the headlines by becoming the first car to be sold with its non-fungible token (NFT). Based on blockchain technology and uniquely linked, Alfa says the Tonale NFT certifies the car upon purchase, then evolves to represent its use during the car’s life cycle.
Subjectively, the Tonale like almost all Alfas is gorgeous to look at. The 'phone dial' styled wheels with the front-end dominated by the 'Scudetto' grille. In terms of dimensions, the Tonale is based on the Jeep Renegade is smaller than the Stelvio, Alfa's first SUV. It measures 4,53 metres long, 1,84 metres wide and 1,6 metres high and faces stiff competition from the Audi Q3, BMW X1 and the Mercedes-Benz GLA.
Let's get to the juicy bits then, the Tonale will be available in two versions: a plug-in hybrid and a normal hybrid. The former has a claimed electric range of 80km and is powered by a 1,3-litre MultiAir turbo petrol engine with a more powerful electric motor to churn 205kW. Interestingly, the petrol engine powers the front axle and the electric motor handles things at the rear.
That model has a claimed zero to 100km/h sprint time of 6,2 seconds.
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The second model is powered by a new 1,5-litre hybrid petrol engine with power sent to the front wheels and is available in 95kW and 117kW versions and both have 240 Nm. A seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox is mated to the engine.
Step inside and you're greeted by a cabin available in two trim levels – Super and Ti. The former is the entry-level option while the famous Ti badge designates 'qualities of elegance and distinctive character' Alfa says.
There are two screens that can provide all the vital information, a fully digital 31cm screen is ahead of the driver and a 26cm touchscreen is where the all-new infotainment system customisable Android OS with 4G connectivity and Over-the-Air (OTA) updates.
On the tech front, the Tonale features level 2 autonomous driving, with new Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS). There's a 360-degree camera fitted along with driving aids such as adaptive cruise control, autonomous emergency braking that can sense pedestrians or cyclists and a drive tiredness alert system among others.
Standout features include an electrically-operated boot lid, heated and cooled seats, Harmon Kardon sound system with 14 speakers and smartphone charging via a wireless pad.
It goes on sale later in 2022 and is likely to touch down locally in either the last quarter of 2022 or at the beginning of 2023.
Battle of the bakkies: Ford Ranger and Volkswagen Amarok tussle in a tug of war
Briefly News reported that two friends engaging in some light banter sent Twitter into a frenzy with a tug of war bakkie video that went viral.
The quality of the video makes it hard to determine the models of the bakkies, but it's likely that the South African-built Ranger is an FX4 model with 132kW and 420 N.m from its 2,0-litre single-turbo diesel engine. Now, this is where it gets interesting as the Amarok in the video is likely the more powerful 3,0-litre V6 turbodiesel engine with 190kW and 580 N.m.
On closer inspection, it's clear that Ranger is fitted with different tyres to the Amarok and this may have helped it grip the road surface better than the German bakkie. Another reason why the Ranger smoked the Amarok in the video is down to driver skill, or lack thereof, we should say.
Source: Briefly News