Volvo XC90- too big to drive? No.

I had the pleasure to testdrive this SUV-luxury car, Volvo XC90. You know, the first thoughts when you see the car: how to drive this tractor? Well, I was surprised in everything.

First, the design and engineering. Volvo XC90 (VOLVB:SS)  is a car for outdoors, gardening and sports lovers. It has pleanty of space to take your items with you. And most important: the car is so brilliant with safety and engineering & hybrid solutions that you are amazed. Wheter your journey is in the city or in the countryside, this car is taking all needed actions and informing you when needed. And the designers have done their best in the quality and design inside the car with luxury materials like crystal and leather.

The so called City Safety recognises other cars, pedestrians, bicycles and large animals like mooses in the dark, and brakes automatically if needed. Pilot Assist helps you to keep the car in the middle of the road during long-distance driving. And Driver Alert informs you when a coffee break is needed. All these functions are based on the Volvo´s target for 2020: no injuries in a Volvo car.

Second, energy. This test car was also a plug-in-hybrid, which allows you to drive with electric power for about 35-40 kilometres. I first thought that you notice this kind of switch, but no. The driving was easy with both and you do not even notice the change during the drive.

Otherwise the average consumption is less than in average in the same size of other cars due to the electric power. According to the Volvo´s technical information, the consumption would be in this kind of a car: 2,1 litres per 100 kilometres due to the integrated system and the Co2 would be 49 g per kilometer.

Third, solutions for Drivers. The central operating panel is a touch panel (like in Tesla´s cars) and it allows you to integrate your iPhone or Android-phone to the service desk. This allows you for example to use Apple CarPlay with your own music, messages, podcasts, audiobooks from your own mobile phone. It is working well, altough the panel is having quite a many fingerprints, so maybe in the next series, they might use some kind of new material in this?

Finally, yes, this car is not too big for ladies, this car is using hybrid efficiently and this car has high-tech solutions for safety.  The overall experience of driving is very good and the usability of functions is also very good.

Technical details:

Volvo XC90 T8 Twin Engine AWD, plug-in-hybrid

Petrol/electric, automatic gear, four-wheel drive

Kilometres with electric power: 35-40 km

 

 

 

Lifestyle

Hyperloop One offering 9 potential routes in Europe

Hyperloop One is offering 9 potential routes in Europe for more efficient, greener and on-demand transportation. The company unveiled its plans in a conference in Amsterdam yesterday.

According to the company press release,  these nine potential European routes will connect over 75 million people in 44 cities, spanning 5000 kilometers and connecting the entire continent.

The proposed routes would greatly reduce passanger and cargo transport times across some of the continent´s most heavily trafficked regions. The routes include: Germany, Estonia-Finland, Spain-Morocco, Corsica-Sardinia, the Netherlands, Poland, UK Scotland-Wales, UK Northern Arc and UK North-South Connector.

With Hyperloop One, passangers and cargo are loaded into a pod and accelerated gradually via electric propulsion through a low-pressure tube. With this magnetic levitation the pod glides at airline speed for long distances, curbing emissions and fuel consumption at the same time.

Business Tech

The start of the Sailing Season

The start of the Sailing Season and the new Rolex.  Rolex Yacht-Master 40 is a new Oyster Perpetual with everose gold and black gloss finish dial. This nautical luxury watch has multicolour sapphires, green tsavorities and one diamond.

And because of its nature, it is waterproof to 100 metres. The co-operation with Rolex and Sailing stretch back to the 1950s.

The second model of the Yacht Master series is the Yacht-Master ii. This professional regatta watch was created in 2007. It features an exclusive function developed by Rolex: a programmable countdown with a mechanical memory that can be synchronized on the fly. A function that is required for precise timing during the crucial starting sequence of a regatta.

Design Lifestyle

Tag Heuer and 20th Century Fox collaborate in Kingsman

KingsmanTagOneShe_Ref103_2TAG Heuer, part of LVMH Group (MC:FP), has announced a global partnership with MARV films and 20th Century Fox in the upcoming new film from acclaimed director Matthew Vaughn, Kingsman: The Golden Circle, in cinemas worldwide on September 22, 2017. TAG Heuer’s Connected Smart Watch is the Official Watch of The Kingsman.

In the new film, the Kingsman agents will all be fitted with TAG Heuer watches. According to the Tag Heuer CEO Jean-Claude Biver,  Kingsman means explosions, action, laughter, and, of course, elegance.

Director Matthew Vaughn added: “For Kingsman: The Golden Circle, we needed a smart watch for our agents. We looked at the different options available, but none of them were elegant enough for a Kingsman. Then I saw an interview on Bloomberg TV with Jean-Claude Biver about his connected watch, and it became immediately obvious; the Kingsman agents would wear the TAG Heuer Connected.”

See the trailer for Kingsman: The Golden Circle:

Lifestyle Tech Travel

Siemens: Energy blockchain trading piloting in New York

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One of the largest engineering and manufacturing companies Siemens (SIE:GR)  is piloting a blockchain energy trading in Brooklyn, New York. According to company, this is a small scale pilot and the aim of this is to find how energy trading is working between communities.

– We are experimenting this new method of energy trading. We see that this will be one of the future trends in the energy sector and the way people can themselves trade energy as part of climate awareness, says Siemens Director of Smart Cities Julie Alexander to ComteamPUBplus.

In that project, neighbors with and without photovoltaic systems, are buying and selling solar power from each other on a blockchain platform that automatically documents each transaction. If Hurricane Sandy should hit again, this isolated network would operate self-sufficiently. This renewable energy project is a pioneer in the movement toward a distributed energy supply system. Siemens is partnering with a local start-up company called LO3 Energy in that project.

This kind of peer-to-peer business deal is very cost efficient and has great potential.  According to Coimarketcap, the total value of the assets being administered via blockchain all over the world is 1,6 billion dollars.

– The energy markets are evolving with new cap and trade -markets for example in Tokyo, Japan and Ontario, Canada. And energy companies are building Smart Grids and new kinds of energy storage and are entering the market with electric cars markets and renewable energy solutions for customers. The big players, which we share,  in the energy markets are  for example Microsoft (MSFT:US), SAP (SAP:GR) and IBM (IBM:US). We all are working with the data related to the energy sector, Julie says.

Customers can have different kind of financing possibilities for new energy efficiency investment, but according to Julie customers are not always aware of financial instruments such as Green Bonds.

According to latest statistics the Green Bonds Markets have increased by 17 percent in the first quarter of  2017 compared with year ago. The issuance was nearly 30 billion dollars and the expectance for this year is 120 billion dollars.

Siemens market value is 113 billion dollars and the company is investing in digitalisation of the manufacturing industries, healthcare and the infrastructure sectors. The company  is listed in Frankfurt, Xetra.

Business Tech

IFC and Amundi to launch Green Bond Fund of 2 billion dollars

International Finance Corporation, IFC, and Amundi (AMUN:FP), a leading European Asset Manager, have agreed to create the largest green-bond fund dedicated to emerging markets. It is a $2 billion initiative that aims to deepen local capital markets and expand financing for climate investments.

IFC will invest up to $325 million in the new Green Cornerstone Bond Fund, which will buy green bonds issued by banks in Africa, Asia, the Middle East, Latin America, Eastern Europe, and Central Asia.

Amundi will raise the rest of the $2 billion from institutional investors worldwide and will provide its services in managing emerging-market debt. The fund aims to be fully invested in green bonds within seven years.

IFC and Amundi expect the new fund to encourage more local financial institutions to issue green bonds by increasing global demand and building local markets. Together, through a donor-funded investment support facility led by IFC, they will work with local financial institutions to strengthen their capacity to issue green bonds, providing training and sharing international best practices with them.

– This green-bond fund will lower the risk for the private sector and attract new investors, essentially creating a market where there was none,” said IFC CEO Philippe Le Houérou. 

– This innovative partnership with IFC is a major achievement for Amundi. This project highlights the strong capabilities in green financial innovation of Credit Agricole Group. I consider this project as a game changer: it is both an investment opportunity for institutional investors and it will have an impact on society by accelerating the shift of emerging markets toward a green economy, said Xavier Musca, Chairman of Amundi.

 

The Bank Group (the World Bank and IFC) is a major issuer of green bonds. So far, the World Bank has issued $8.5 billion in green bonds in 18 currencies. IFC has issued $5.8 billion in 12 currencies.

Finance