Monthly Archives: December 2018

Honda Autonomous Work Vehicle is a prototype off-road vehicle that is a combination of Honda’s all-terrain vehicle (ATV) and emerging advanced autonomous technology. It was designed by Honda R&D Americas to bring efficiencies and increased safety to public, commercial, and consumer enterprises, such as construction, agriculture, search and rescue and firefighting.

Honda’s Autonomous Work Vehicle heads to CES

Honda’s new autonomous concept set will make its public debut at Las Vegas, at CES, one of the largest innovation conventions of the year, and it could very well revolutionize entire industries.

For years now, a debate regarding autonomous vehicles has been splitting the internet down the middle. A lot of people view autonomous cars as more convenient and practical, while others claim they much prefer the joy of driving and driver involvement. Either way, both parties agree that autonomous vehicles have their use in the modern world. Take, for example, Honda’s new concept, the Honda Autonomous Work Vehicle, which is making its public debut at CES.

Honda Autonomous Work Vehicle is a prototype off-road vehicle that is a combination of Honda’s all-terrain vehicle (ATV) and emerging advanced autonomous technology. It was designed by Honda R&D Americas to bring efficiencies and increased safety to public, commercial, and consumer enterprises, such as construction, agriculture, search and rescue and firefighting.

Honda Autonomous Work Vehicle is a prototype off-road vehicle that is a combination of Honda’s all-terrain vehicle (ATV) and emerging advanced autonomous technology. It was designed by Honda R&D Americas to bring efficiencies and increased safety to public, commercial, and consumer enterprises, such as construction, agriculture, search and rescue and firefighting.

The Honda Autonomous Work Vehicle is based on Honda’s proven ATV chassis and feature permanent four-wheel drive. Still in prototype form, the machines use GPS and sensor-based autonomy capable of guiding the vehicle in almost any environment. A rail accessory mount system sits atop the ATV making it extremely versatile, as just about any accessory and attachment can be mounted on it depending on the needs and requirements.

Honda Autonomous Work Vehicle is a prototype off-road vehicle that is a combination of Honda’s all-terrain vehicle (ATV) and emerging advanced autonomous technology. It was designed by Honda R&D Americas to bring efficiencies and increased safety to public, commercial, and consumer enterprises, such as construction, agriculture, search and rescue and firefighting.

Honda Autonomous Work Vehicle is a prototype off-road vehicle that is a combination of Honda’s all-terrain vehicle (ATV) and emerging advanced autonomous technology. It was designed by Honda R&D Americas to bring efficiencies and increased safety to public, commercial, and consumer enterprises, such as construction, agriculture, search and rescue and firefighting.

For example: We doubt anyone wants to go out in the freezing cold and shovel snow from the driveway, let alone the entire yard. This is where a snow throwing off-road work vehicle comes in. It saves you both time and effort, and it isn’t the only use of autonomous off-road vehicles Honda has managed to think of.

Next up there’s the First Aid delivery vehicle. Think of post-tsunami or post-hurricane situations and the carnage they bring with them. A First Aid autonomous vehicle would be able to would be able to carry some of the weight for rescue aid workers or deliver supplies without unnecessarily putting more people in harm’s way.

Wildfire fighters could also benefit tremendously from an autonomous work vehicle such as this. Heavy equipment and rugged conditions often restrict the movement of those battling one of nature’s most deadly forces in the wild. An autonomous vehicle capable of carrying the gear and following the firefighters would make their job a dozen times easier, leaving them with more energy and strength to do the important work once they reach the front lines. Here’s a quick glimpse into how that would work.

Honda has already conducted real-world testing with different partners: a large-scale solar operations company in North Carolina, a firefighting division in Colorado, and an agricultural and environmental sciences college in California. In all three cases, the autonomous system turned out to be an efficient and consistent solution, as well as a more cost-effective option in the long run.

Expect to see the Honda Autonomous Work Vehicle at CES 2019, and out in the world in the near future.

2019 Honda Passport

Honda’s world gets a bit bigger with the new Passport

Naming a vehicle after a travel document can be a bit of a gamble. After all, Passports enable us to travel everywhere freely and are the ultimate proof of citizenship. Luckily, the new Honda Passport lives up to its name completely.

For starters, it’s a mid-size crossover capable of taking you just about anywhere and has been entirely designed by Honda’s U.S.-based research and development teams right here on North American soil. It made its public debut at the Los Angeles Auto Show, right next to Honda’s newest ultimate fun-having machine, the Talon UTV.

2019 Honda Passport with Accessory Roof Rack, Running Boards, Fender Flares and Towing Hitch

2019 Honda Passport with Accessory Roof Rack, Running Boards, Fender Flares and Towing Hitch

Apart from its interesting name, the Honda Passport also occupies an interesting spot in Honda’s lineup. It sits between the smaller CR-V and the flagship Pilot, offering the best of both worlds. It’s almost as practical and capable as the Pilot without being as bulky, and a lot more robust than the CR-V while being just as easy to live with on a day-to-day basis. As described by Jean Marc Leclerc, Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Honda Canada:
“The all-new 2019 Honda Passport provides the on-road comfort and nimble handling buyers will appreciate on their daily commute with the robust off-road and all-weather capability that make for a great weekend adventure vehicle.”

2019 Honda Passport with Accessory Roof Rack, Running Boards, Fender Flares and Towing Hitch

2019 Honda Passport with Accessory Roof Rack, Running Boards, Fender Flares and Towing Hitch

The Passport gets a reinforced unibody frame and will be offered in three different trim levels: Sport, EX-L and Touring. Interestingly enough, all three trim levels, even the base Sport, get the whole gamut of safety and drive-assist systems called Honda Sensing suite, in addition to LED lights, fog lights, DRLs, and three-zone automatic climate control. The Passport comes all-wheel drive from the factory regardless of trim level too, but more on that later on.

2019 Honda Passport

2019 Honda Passport

The only engine choice is the 3.5-liter direct-injected V6 which develops an impressive 280 horsepower and 262 lb-ft of torque. As mentioned before, power is sent to all four wheels via Honda’s i-VTM4 torque-vectoring AWD system and the brilliant 9-speed automatic transmission. The AWD system comes with a couple of modes to optimize performance depending on the surface and the weather conditions (Snow, Sand and Mud).
All Passports ride on 20-inch alloy wheels, feature a heated steering wheel, the Adventure and Urban accessory packages and Honda’s latest Display Audio interface complete with an 8-inch touchscreen and Apple CarPlay/Android Auto. Additional features depend on selected trims but encompass a power tailgate with hands-free operation, heated auto-dimming/power-folding side mirrors, a blind sport information system and front/rear parking sensors complete with drive assist functions.

2019 Honda Passport

2019 Honda Passport

Make no mistake, however, as the Passport is a serious off-roader. It’s more than capable of tackling trails previously reserved for serious body-on-frame off-roaders such as the Toyota 4Runner. It offers all of the pros with none of the cons associated with traditional off-roaders (less refined, less usable and thirstier).
The new Honda Passport hits Canadian showrooms sometime early 2019, but Canadian customers will see it in the flesh at the Montreal Auto Show in January. Excited? You should be. If you’re interested in booking an early test drive as soon as it gets here or have more questions, feel free to give us a call.

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The evolution of the winter tire

Winter has officially arrived, and with it the most complicated driving season of all. And since struggling to control a vehicle in ice or snow is not anyone’s cup of Pumpkin Spice Latte, Canadians know that winter tires are critical this time of year.

While summer and all-season tires work great on paved roads, they aren’t designed for slick conditions and lack the various traction-enhancing technologies usually found on a dedicated winter set. Winter tires haven’t always been as effective as they are today, however, and have only progressed throughout the years as our knowledge of the matter has grown. To truly understand and appreciate the modern winter tire, let’s take a look at its evolution, by exploring where it began, and the notable milestones along the way.

2018 Honda CR-V

2018 Honda CR-V

The wheel gets invented – 3,500 BC

To understand the history of the winter tire, we have to understand the history of the tire, and to understand the history of the tire, we have to understand the history of the wheel. So, we go back. Way, way back. The humble wheel (which still hasn’t been reinvented) is said to have arrived on-scene around 3,500 B.C., but it was roughly another 300 additional years before somebody had the idea to use on chariots as a means of transportation.

The wheel gains traction – 1839

These were important-times for the wheel, as mass adoption of the idea saw the modern world catch on and spike demand. The first breakthrough in the wheel’s evolution came in 1839 and was discovered by a man by the name of Charles Goodyear, who after years of tinkering, was able to develop and perfect a vulcanization process that made rubber able to withstand the high temperatures caused by the friction of driving at higher speeds.

VulcanizationMold1941

Worker placing tire in a mold before vulcanization. – Wiki

Rubber meets air – 1888

Early tires were crude and extremely heavy. But eventually, as functionality became less-important and the public started focusing more on comfort, a Scottish veterinarian by the name of John Boyd Dunlop invented the first air-filled tire for his son’s tricycle. This new pneumatic prototype delivered a more comfortable ride quality and weighed far less than previous designs, making it ideal for use on passenger vehicles.

Dunlop's first pneumatic bicycle tyre National Museum of Scotland

Dunlop’s first pneumatic bicycle tyre National Museum of Scotland – Wiki

The first winter tire – 1908

1908 marked the year that Henry Ford first unveiled the Model-T, which was the first automobile specifically designed and mass produced to appease the average individual. As popularity and convenience continued to spread, so too did the need for more rugged and versatile tires for those living in regions of the world that saw harsher climate conditions like ice and snow. Additionally, another advancement was made in 1908 by a man named Frank Seiberling, who found that cutting grooves into a tire’s surface could improve its ability to find grip.

Then, in 1934 a Finnish company by the name of Nokian produced the Kelirengas, the first-ever dedicated winter tire that was specifically designed for maximum grip no matter the temperature.

Today’s winter tire – 2018

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Although the basic design is similar to John Boyd Dunlop’s original prototype (tktkt), some small changes have been made in other areas, such as adding a performance rating to help buyers make the proper selection to suit their needs, or by adding a universal “Winter” symbol marked only on tires that have been tested and therefore meet minimum standards. Additionally, thanks to further advancements in traction technology, all-season tires have become popular when conditions change frequently and rarely reach extreme.

If you’re thinking about equipping your daily driver with a set of winter tires this season and aren’t exactly sure where to begin, please stop by the showroom for a chat with one of our professionals and we’ll set you up.

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