LA Auto Show 2019

Alfa Romeo properly freshens up Giulia and Stelvio for 2020 model year

The Italian automaker has given the interior of the Giulia and Stelvio a much-needed upgrade for the 2020 model year.

Photo courtesy of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V.

Alfa Romeo has given its Giulia sedan and Stelvios SUV a proper refresh for the 2020 model year, including new technology and higher-end appointments. The automaker says that the models have retained their engaging drive dynamics.

"The Alfa Romeo Giulia and Stevlio receive significant technology, infotainment and interior enhancements for the 2020 model year," said Tim Kuniskis, Global Head of Alfa Romeo and Head of Passenger Cars – Dodge, SRT, Chrysler and FIAT, FCA – North America. "Alfa Romeo's unrivaled driving experience is now elevated by delivering key premium features requested by our current and future customers."

2020 Alfa Romeo Stelvio Buyers can modify their Stelvio with a new package that includes fascia enhancements.Photo courtesy of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V.

On the outside of the vehicle are the same as in the previous modle year. Alfa Romeo has developed a new, available, body-color appearance kit that adds fender flares, side sills, and rear fascia with a body-color finish is standard on Sport models and above. Also available on Sport models is the new Dark Miron appearance kit that adds fender flares, side sills and rear fascia finished in a dark-painted finish. An available exterior carbon fiber package adds a carbon fiber V-Scudetto grille, carbon fiber mirror caps, and Dark Miron badging to Quadrifoglio models.

New for 2020, Giulia and Stelvio are aviallabe with Anodized Blue or Lunare White paint jobs. Giulia also gets the option of Verde Visconti metallic paint.

There have been no powertrain enhancements for the new model year.

2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia The interior of the Giulia is now thoroughly modern looking, having brushed aside old technology shared with Mazda.Photo courtesy of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V.

Both models have received new center consoles. They feature a machined-knurled aluminum-look rotary dial, upgraded knob materials and increased storage capacity. Giulia gets bigger cup holders and a new phone storage area with available wireless charging capability.

The car and SUV have a new leather-wrapped shifter and a race-inspired steering wheel.

2020 Alfa Romeo Stelvio The climate controls and shifter are sophisticated looking now.Photo courtesy of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V.

Front and center in the vehicles is a new, standard 8.8-inch infotainment touch screen. Driver's have a 7-inch information screen in front of them. Both screens feature new formatting and features. The vehicles come standard with a complementary 12-month SiriusXM satellite radio trial subscription. A Wi-Fi hot spot, over the air updates, and mobile app connectivity functionality add to the vehicles' roster for 2020.

Alfa Romeo is making a number of advanced safety and driver assist features available on the 2020 models including traffic sign recognition, lane keep assist, active blind spot monitoring, driver attention alert, and forward collision warning.

220 Alfa Romeo Stelvio Owners can now utlize Apple CarPlay in their SUV.Photo courtesy of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V.

The 2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia starts at $39,345. The high-octane Giulia Quadrifolgio starts at $74,445. The 2020 Alfa Romeo Stelvio starts at $41,345 and has its Quadrifolgio variant start at $80,445. All the models are expected to start arriving on U.S. shores before the end of 2019.

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Mercedes-Benz has refreshed the interior and exterior of the E-Class coupe and cabriolet.

Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz

Mercedes-Benz has revealed a refreshed 2021 E-Class immediately following the reveal of its closest competitor, the next-generation 2021 BMW 5 Series. The company that bears founder Karl Benz's name has given is E-Class a makeover that enhances nearly every aspect of the car.

At the front of the E-Class Coupe and Cabriolet are full-LED headlights that are flatter in the new model. Intelligent LED headlights with two round lights are available. The grille now features an A-shape with a large Mercedes logo at the center.

The car's rear features a two-piece taillamp on each side and is illuminated using LED technology. The Mercedes logo hides the rearview camera and is inset into the trunk.

2021 Mercedes-Benz E-Class

Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz

New aerodynamic wheels, designed for fuel savings, are available. All-wheel drive is available.

Mercedes has made four new paint colors available: Cirrus Silver Metallic, Graphite Grey Metallic, Mojave Silver Metallic and designo Patagonia Red Metallic.

The new E-Class comes with an inline six-cylinder engine that is paired with 48-volt mild-hybrid technology. The electrified technology provides up to 21 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque. The total output is 362 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque.

The character of the cabin is relatively unchanged. New trim options are available including open-pore grey ash wood.

Like with the technology in the 2020 Genesis G90, the E-Class allows a driver to put in their height in the infotainment system and the car will automatically move into a position that the company has deemed suitable to the height of the driver.

A number of seat upholstery options are available ranging from embossed leather to Nappa leather with diamond quilting and even sun-reflecting leather (for the Cabriolet).

The model features a new steering wheel design, complete lwith captive functionality that also detects when the driver's hands are off the wheel. The wheel is available as a leather steering wheel and as a super sport flat-bottom version with the available AMG Line. The control surfaces sport a high- gloss black finish, while the trim elements and surrounds have a silver shadow finish. The functions of the instrument cluster and media display are operated using touch controls.

Two 12.3-inch screens, side by side but under one glass panel, make up the driver's information display and the infotainment touch screen. The Mercedes-Benz User Experience (MBUX) has new features you can read about here.

The car also comes with Active Brake Assist with cross traffic functionality, which can precancerous help mitigate the severity of a collision.

The refreshed 2021 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Coupe and Cabriolet will go on sale in the U.S. by late 2020.

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Newer Ford police SUVs can immediately begin installing the technology.

Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company

A software solution will allow police officers across the world to reduce their chances of contracting COVID-19. All Ford Motor Company Police Interceptor Utility customers with certain model year vehicles are immediately eligible for the no-cost upgrade, which was engineered by the Dearborn, Michigan-based automaker.

"First responders are on the front lines protecting all of us. They are exposed to the virus and are in dire need of protective measures," said Hau Thai-Tang, Ford's chief product development and purchasing officer. "We looked at what's in our arsenal and how we could step up to help. In this case, we've turned the vehicle's powertrain and heat control systems into a virus neutralizer."

What does it take to kill coronavirus? It sounds simple: Bake the vehicle until viruses inside are neutralized.

Ford heated sanitization testing and development process

Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company

What does that mean? The interior cabin temperature must reach beyond 133 degrees Fahrenheit, hotter than Death Valley on the hottest day, for at least 15 minutes – long enough to help disinfect vehicle touch points.

According to Ford, here's how it works:

"Once activated, the vehicle's powertrain and climate control systems work together automatically to elevate interior cabin temperatures. The software warms up the engine to an elevated level, and then turns both the heat and fan settings on high. Interior temperatures are automatically monitored by the software to know when the entire cabin hits the optimal level and that temperature is then maintained for at least 15 minutes.

Law enforcement will have multiple ways to monitor progress. Hazard lights and taillights will flash in a pre-set pattern to notify when the process has begun, and they will change at the end to signal completion. Additionally, the instrument cluster inside the vehicle will indicate the progress of the procedure. A cool-down process has also been developed to help bring the temperature down from its highest points."

To develop the method, Ford worked with scientists from The Ohio State University. Ford also conducted software operational trials in vehicles owned by the New York City Police Department, Los Angeles Police Department, Michigan State Police, Massachusetts State Police, Boardman Township Police Department (Ohio), and Seminole County Sheriff's Office (Florida).

This process doesn't just have to be a one-time thing. Law enforcement officers can regularly sanitize their vehicle, when it is unoccupied, using the same technology.

Police departments with their own service centers are now able to install the software solution through their own diagnostic service tools, while other fleets can work with their local dealers to install the software.

For 2016-19 police vehicles, the heated software process can be activated by a smart sequence of commands that involves pressing cruise control buttons in a predefined order. For 2013-15 vehicles, this mode can be activated and carried out through an external tool that connects to the onboard diagnostics port.

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