Saturday, December 19, 2015

Opel/Vauxhall Astra K

The car that was once used as Top Gear's Reasonably Priced Car for three seasons has been renewed for a brand new generation and for the latest generation, the new Opel/Vauxhall Astra K wants to live out in its own rules just as how its predecessor fared well of being a reasonably priced car used by celebs round the track.

2016 Opel Astra
2016 Vauxhall Astra

Well, there they are and judging from its looks, it looks rather identical to its reasonably priced predecessor but no matter which side you're looking at, this is still the reasonably priced car you would hope for if you're not in the mood for something boring nor exciting. Who knows, it could becoming the ideal car to start if you got a driving license for the first time since it only costs 17,260 Euros (15,295 Pounds) plus the added extras and the insurance needed before setting off on your maiden drive through town.

2016 Opel Astra
2016 Vauxhall Astra

So, what choices do you get under the bonnet? Well, the new Astra K is offered with a new 1.0T SIDI, 1.4L, 1.4L SIDI Turbo, 1.6 SIDI Turbo, and a 1.6L CDTi (with an available Bi-Turbo) engine. Most of the engines are new so let's introduce those who aren't familiar with them. The new 1.0T SIDI has 105PS of power and 170Nm of torque with CO2 emissions ranging from 102 to 96g/km. This engine is mated exclusively with a brand new 5-speed semi-automatic EasyTronic 3.0 gearbox. That gearbox sounds new and the way it behaves feels somewhat similar to Suzuki's Auto Gear Shift gearbox used on their smaller cars, if I dare say. Anyway, also new is the 1.4 engine, which in turbo guise, can get up to 150PS of power, and 245Nm of torque, so it's a great mid-range choice for those who wanted something of a well-balanced performer. And then, there's the 1.6 CDTi engine where, in most economical versions, it promises better CO2 emissions of less than 95g/Km. Although diesel versions have lesser power ratings than petrol versions, it has better torque to keep things afloat.

Underneath the Astra is a newly developed platform that will be used on the next Chevrolet Cruze, resulting to a much smaller size and lighter bodywork and when combined with the most clever suspension setup available to most European cars, not only it feels good to drive but it's surprisingly comfortable. I might have a feeling that when this new model compare this to the previous model round the Top Gear track, chances are that the new Astra will lap faster than the old one. The same way that the Kia cee-apostrophe-d did when it was renewed years ago.

For safety, the new Astra's front camera system, includes traffic sign recognition, following distance indicator, forward collision alert and an active lane-keep assist indicator. It even comes with an advanced park assist which allows this car to park by itself. Sounds witchcraft to us but flattering if you engage this nifty gadget at your expense. What's even more clever in the new Astra is the new IntelliLux LED Matrix headlights which adjusts automatically depending on time and driving conditions.

2016 Opel Astra interior
2016 Vauxhall Astra interior

So, with the new Astra getting more of a reasonably priced car as the hopefuls hoped for, the interior is well poised, well balanced, comfortable, and more high tech. It even comes with climate control, ergonomic sports seats, AirWellness, and the new IntelliLink infotainment system compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The spacing's not so bad either but you can expect more cargo space in the Sport Tourer later on.

In conclusion, the new Astra is a major improvement to its predecessor in terms of technology, driving dynamics, and user friendliness. Despite its added improvements, the new Astra retains its reasonably priced character, making it very accessible to anyone who wanted to buy a reasonably priced car to drive anywhere. Truth be told, we are getting jealous why Top Gear never featured it in the show and we want to see how it performs on the TV show in the near future.

Photo: General Motors

Latest Kalyeserye uncovers Dodong's presence!

Photo: Official Eat Bulaga Facebook page

After days of speculation, wondering where in the name of all things bright and beautiful is Yaya Dub's real father, Dodong Smash, the recent Kalyeserye finally unmasked the presence of her father! The Dodong Smash that Yaya Dub knew looked different. He looks more hip-hop, he's a wealthy man, and he's got backup dancers. He now has an new name; Daddy Dod. Oh yes.

Despite his presence, that wasn't enough for AlDub and the lolas to convince that he REALLY is Yaya Dub's father, so he approached in front of the live audience and in front of the Eat Bulaga presenters! He also made a tandem with Yaya Dub onstage to prove he's the real deal...and it did. It really was one heck of a reunion until it was cut short by Lola Babah and if that wasn't enough, Lola Babah outbid Dodong in the auction for Lola Nidora's mansion.

The reunion sure is short lived because of Lola Babah's interruption but Yaya Dub got her Christmas wish come true, hoping that one day, her father will come back. So, what happens next? Keep watching Eat Bulaga every weekdays for more Kalyeserye antics. Be sure to check out My Bebe Love #KiligPaMore, starring Yaya Dub, Alden Richards, Vic Sotto, and Ai-Ai Delas Alas, in theaters December 25th!

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Since Disney's acquisition of LucasFilm, the folks who took over the brainchild of the Star Wars saga finally revived the legendary franchise in new and exciting ways but nothing is more so than the long awaited installment of the cult classic franchise. Yes, The Force Awakens is the long-awaited installment that ushers in the new generation of Star Wars heroes and villains while retaining the classic taste that has been around since A New Hope.

Aside from legends returning in the film such as Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker, Carrie Fisher as Leia, and Harrison Ford as Han Solo, this film introduces new faces that will surely become a favorite among Jedis and Padawans alike. This film introduces two new protagonists such as a young woman named Rey, played by Daisy Ridley, and a former Stormtrooper named Finn, played by John Boyega, as they set off on a war between the First Order and the Resistance.

If you asked anyone who watched this film, the biggest reactions you might hear from them is simple; it is simply the best film that will put the end of 2015 as they knew it because this is ultimately the best 2015 film to watch. Of course, the year 2015 brought us some of the most wittiest, most explosive, most heart-warming, scariest, films to watch but with the film like Star Wars: The Force Awakens, this is nothing beyond compare to the list of 2015 movies.

As Star War veterans and rookies alike, The Force Awakens is simply great to watch from start to finish despite its flaws from the aging legends of the franchise, the new faces surely brought the shine on the film, making it very unique and very clever. In terms of storytelling, well since this is now under Disney's terms following their takeover of LucasFilm, the magic is well suitable enough to bring any moviegoers at any age various emotions. A hint of joy, sadness, fear, anger, and disgust, the perfect recipes that most Disney films used, especially on Marvel films, really poured in to bring the latest Star Wars films more livelier than the other films were.

Overall, The Force Awakens surely put a brilliant end of this year with some style, some magic, some action, some thrills, and some humor that will surely make it one of the most memorable films to watch for a lifetime and an instant classic the more has gained total interest at it. After all, it's good to have the Force returned to our side.

My rating: 4.5 out of 5


On the December 18, 2015 episode of Bubble Gang

- Oxygen gags

- Hugot lines for Christmas!

- Acting Workshop for aspiring politicians.


- Dude pulls tricks on his pals.

- Expectiation Vs. Reality

- The staff come up with a unusual way to do with the scripts...

- Who will be the next Con Star?

- Complaining about why people use personified words on inaminated objects.

Friday, December 18, 2015

Let's Do The News (December 18, 2015)

- According to PAGASA, about twenty areas in Mindanao have been placed on Signal No. 1 due to Tropical Depression Onyok. This weather disturbance continues to pose a threat at the Caraga region and it is expected to make landfall by Friday night.

- A lawyer has filed a 828-million peso plunder complaint against the ousted Makati City mayor Junjun Binay.

- Enrique Marquez, a friend of Syed Farook who was one of the couple behind the San Bernardino shootings, was arrested by US prosecutors for purchasing heavy firearms used by the masterminds behind the attack and charged with conspiring t provide support to the terrorists.

- Russian President Vladimir Putin warned that Russia may shoot down Turkish military planes if they enter Syria's airspace. Tensions between Turkey and Russia are doubtful ever since Turkish forces shot down a Russian warplane near the Syrian border.

- The UN Security Council has unanimously adopted a resolution to cut the funds of the Islamic State militants. The resolution points out that the militants gained funds by selling oil and cultural artefacts. It calls for sanctions, including a financial freeze and travel ban, against ISIL and those who support or trade with them.

- A Danish cargo ship has sunk in Singapore Strait after colliding with a Norwegian tanker. Authorities say six of the 12 crew members onboard are rescued by the other half, including two Ukrainian and four Filipino crew members, are missing.

- Hacker George Hotz, known for hacking numerous gadgets including the iPhone since 2007, made headlines again for creating his own autonomous car.

- The latest goods coming in Pokemon Center across Japan will make you BELIEVE IN STEVEN. Well, Hoenn league champion Steven Stone, that is. Releasing through numerous Pokemon Center shops in the 26th of December (with early unveiling at the Jump Festa 2016 this weekend), customers can take advantage of special BIG Rubber Key Holders featuring manga illustrations getting to know more about the Hoenn champ. There's also a special clear fie, stainless mug cup, badges, iPhone 6/6S cases, glasses case, and top it all off with a replica of Steven's Mega Stickpin.

Steven's Mega Stickpin

- In celebration of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Good Smile Company unveiled a Nendoroid of the film's First Order Stormtrooper. Now open for pre-orders, this Nendoroid costs 3,889 Yen plus tax and it will arrive this July.

Nendoroid First Order
- DON'T MISS OUT! Tomorrow on Eat Bulaga's kalyeserye, Dodong's presence will be uncovered! Who is Dodong Smash? Is he the long lost father Yaya Dub's looking for after so many years? What will Lola Nidora react when the two finally met each other? Tune in tomorrow and expect the unexpected!


Ways to enjoy Star Wars in video games

Continuing on the celebration for Star Wars: The Force Awakens, as you may know; Star Wars is one of the most successful franchise in the world and because it's so successful, it expands more than just films but from toys, books, TV shows, and of course, video games. Sure, some people never once watched a Star Wars movie. They once heard of the Star Wars films but they jump straight to the games because they got connected to it.

We once had games like The Phantom Menace, LEGO Star Wars, Star Wars Bounty Hunter, Star Wars Rebel Assault, The Force Unleashed, the list goes on and on and on. Now, let's focus on today's games that will surely bring The Force to your homes.

First up is Star Wars Battlefront. Now available on PS4 and XBOX One, Battlefront gives players a big chance to immerse themselves in the world of Star Wars. They can fight for the Rebellion or the Empire as one of the franchise's iconic heroes and villains in various campaign missions as well as taking a spin in one of the most iconic machines from the franchise from the Millennium Falcon, X-wings, TIE fighters, even the massive AT-AT. You can even challenge your friends in multiplayer matches both split-screen and online. This game is every Star Wars fans' dream come true to immerse themselves in the galaxy far far away.

Star Wars Battlefront (PS4)

Star Wars Battlefront (XBOX One)

Although Battlefront sounds to be one of the most enjoyable Star Wars games to play, there's one problem. Suppose you're the big brother in the house. Then, your little brother came here and wants a piece of it. You said no. Your little brother's getting pessimistic and then your mom come here to stop your playing. Sure, you would let your little brother play a Star Wars kid but there's a major problem; he's a kid and this game contains content not suitable to children. Do you know any kid-friendly stuff that can get him as close as the world of Star Wars?!

Disney Infinity 3.0 (PS4)

Disney Infinity 3.0 (XBOX One)

Disney Infinity 3.0 (Wii U)

Well, this is the ideal solution to this dilemma. Yes, this is the Disney Infinity 3.0, the latest installment of the Disney Infinity figure-based video games and aside from featuring iconic Disney and Marvel characters to collect, the addition of Star Wars makes a welcoming force to be reckoned with. The starter pack features two figures of Clone Wars main characters Anakin Skywalker and Ahsoka Tano. There are Star Wars figures available in 3.0 from classic characters such as Darth Vader, Yoda, Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia, Han Solo, Chewbacca, to characters from the Star Wars Rebels TV series such as Ezra Bridger, Kanan Jarrus , Sabine Wren, and Zeb Orrelios, and the characters from the latest The Force Awakens film such as Finn, Rey, and Kylo Ren. True to Infinity tradition, players can create worlds and play with their favorite characters in the Toy Box as well as unleashing the fun of Disney Infinity via Power Discs.

With stuff like these, your little kid sure is looking forward to collect most of the Star Wars heroes and villains to play with in Disney Infinity 3.0.

So, with Star Wars content in Disney Infinity 3.0 as well as living the dream of being in the world Star Wars in Battlefront, these games will surely bring the world of Star Wars closer to home. These games are now available with additional content coming soon and sold separately. Star Wars The Force Awakens is now playing in cinemas.

Second Generation Chevrolet Volt

The Chevrolet Volt has been with us for five years now and when it was launched, we couldn't tell if it's a hybrid or a zero-emission vehicle like the Nissan Leaf. In general, this is the first ever PHEV (Plug-In Hybrid Vehicle) in the market and because it's a PHEV, you can either refuel it with petrol or charge the batteries in one plug. To commemorate the Chevrolet Volt's fifth anniversary, a regeneration to the first ever PHEV in the market has occurred and for the new Chevrolet Volt, this PHEV promises to go further, sticking through to its "FIND NEW ROADS" slogan.

2016 Chevrolet Volt

Here it is, the future really is now thanks to science and some clever American engineering. The new Chevrolet Volt looks more crisper to look at than the previous model, although some Chevrolet purists find the new look to be more sacrilege to the front just like what the Traverse, Impala, as well the upcoming Spark and Cruze had because by losing their trademark Chevrolet front face that has been around for ages, Chevrolet purists might simply just call it witchcraft. Putting the sins aside, it looks not too bad to look at.

2016 Chevrolet Volt interior
2016 Chevrolet Volt interior

On the interior, this is more of an improvement if I'm honest. Even though the outside looks somewhat resembled to the Corvette Stingray, it's surprisingly spacious as well although the back needs a bit more room if I'm honest. In terms of convenience, the Volt, like all Chevys, have 4G LTE connectivity so you can connect to the internet wirelessly and do whatever you like while you're stuck at traffic. There's also a wireless charger which makes the new Volt a handy power bank on the go but due caution however that it might use up most of its batteries, making its range a bit of a setback. If that's a problem, better set this Volt to run on petrol alone while letting its batteries do the talking on the electronics department. Sounds shoddy even if you're a city folk going out town with your friends.

2016 Chevrolet Volt

The new Volt is powered by two electric motors as well as a 1.5L petrol engine which now runs on regular rather than premium. Running on electric alone, the new Volt claims to have a range of 55 pure electric miles  but by running on unison, it can get up to the claimed total range of 420 miles on a full charge and a full tank of gas. That's over a thousand miles between fill-ups by charging regularly and overall, its overall fuel consumption is around 82 MPG-e city and 72 MPG-e highway. 

That's even less than the BMW i3, which costs 17,000 dollars more than the Volt's $25,670 suggested retail price, but mind you, the new Volt has the highest range by any PHEV available, meaning that most of the owners will rely on electricity alone and because it takes $650 dollars to fill the Volt per year, $150 less than what the previous Volt did, it's value for money as well. Think about the savings you'll get from this car.

In terms of charging the car, the Volt comes with either a 120-volt portable cord which lets the car to be fully charged for half a day or a more expensive 240-volt charging system, which allows the Volt to be fully charged after four and half hours later. There are many ways of battery management in the new Volt, including a brand new Regen on Demand system which transfers the kinetic energy from the moving car and stores it in the batter while slowing it down. There's also a programmable location-based charging as well.

Being capable on taking on city traffic, the new Volt offers safety tech such as an available Lane Keep Assist, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, and Forward Safety Awareness. For protection, it was utilized in advanced high-strength steel for better weight loss and added rigidity as well as implementing ten airbags.

So, should you buy one? As mentioned, the new Volt starts at $25,670 but don't rush for these ones just yet because just like the last model, the new model is available in selected US states, including California. Next year, it will be available nationwide.

Photo: General Motors

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Let's Do The News! (December 17, 2015)

- Tropical Depression Onyok is expected to be intensified into a typhoon by Friday morning while Nona weakens. As of 1000 hours, Philippine Time, Onyok was located 625km east of Hinatuan, Surigao del Sur, packing max sustained winds of 55kph and likely to move west at 15kph. It is expected to leave the PAR by Monday.

- It's official. COMELEC accepted the certificate of candidacy from Davao Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, who will serve as the replacement candidate for PDP-Lakas ng Bayan's former standard bearer Martin Diño.

- The Islamic State militants have attacked a base in northern Iraq where Turkish forces are stationed. Two Iraqi trainees were killed while four Turkish soldiers were hurt, according to the Foreign Ministry.

- According to the FBI, the Islamic State militants uses some kind of encoded messages that made their investigation difficult. A top FBI official said that the ISIL used social media to contact potential followers in the US and elsewhere. If the group determines that the individual's going to Syria or carry out attack on American soil, it switches to direct communication through encoded messages.

- North Korea observes the 4th death anniversary of the late leader Kim Jong-Il.

- The Department of Justice summoned thirty members of PNP's Special Action Force to appear at the hearing of the Mamasapano clash that killed forty-four troops last January. The SAF commandos failed to appear before the preliminary hearing on Thursday. Only four, headed by Chief Superintendent Noli Talino, were able to appear before the hearing and execute their affidavits.

- The Department of Trade and Industry has released an investigation report over the sudden unintended acceleration that plagued Mitsubishi Motors Philippines regarding their M_nt_r_ Sp_rt SUV. Out of the 97 reported complaints, only 24 filed formal complains with DTI.

- To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the dogfight-laden sci-fi action flick Independence Day since its 1996 release, 20th Century Fox released the trailer of its sequel; Independence Day Resurgence, set to hit theaters this Summer. CHECK IT OUT.

- The first trailer of the Harry Potter spin-off film Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them has landed.

- In case you missed the recent Eat Bulaga kalyeserye, it's AlDub's 22nd weeksary and as the search for Yaya Dub's father, Dodong, ventured them to Cebu, they meet up with a chairman who looks a lot like Tito Sotto for some information. Moments later, AlDub and the Kalye's Angels dug deeper through the hidden files about Dodong's whereabouts. The files state that he's in Davao and will our gang be there too? Tune in next time and find out.


Wednesday, December 16, 2015

What to see at the 2015 MMFF?

Every Christmas Day in the Philippines, the Metro Manila Film Festival kicks in and throughout the MMFF season, all film festival entries are screened at all cinemas nationwide. For this year, expect even more big things to come at the 2015 MMFF including a heated rivalry with movies featuring AlDub and JaDine.

First up is All You Need Is Pag-Ibig. Starring Kris Aquino, Derek Ramsay, Kim Chiu, Xiam Lim, Jodi Sta. Maria, and Ian Veneracion, this film features various love stories showcasing different forms of love.


Also in the love story stakes is the hugot-laden #WalangForever, starring Jennylyn Mercado, Jericho Rosales, and Lorna Tolentino. It's about a writer who deals with her heartbreak and when her ex steps in, things get out of control for her.

One of the most much-awaited films in the 2015 MMFF is My Bebe Love #KiligPaMore, starring the ever-famous love team of Alden Richards and Maine "Yaya Dub" Mendoza as well as Vic Sotto and Ai-Ai Delas Alas.

In the horror department comes Buy Now, Die Later, a terrifying horror flick about a mysterious shop selling items dedicated to solve every customer's problem...but with a terrifying price to pay. It stars Vhong Navarro, John Lapus, Alex Gonzaga, and TJ Trinidad.

Also frightening in this year's MMFF is Haunted Mansion, starring Oh My G's Janella Salvador, Marlo Mortel, Janice de Belen, and Iza Calzado. It's about a group of students holding an annual retreat at an old mansion, only to found out that it's been run amok by evil spirits.

If there's something that is part action, part horror, there's Nilalang, starring Cesar Montano and a special participation of Japanese porn star Maria Ozawa. It's about a policeman teaming up with a heiress of a powerful Japanese yakuza to solve the unusual killings in Manila.

Next is Beauty and the Bestie. A cop buddy flick starring Ang Probinsyano's Coco Martin and IT'S SHOWTIME's Vice Ganda as well as On The Wings of Love's Nadine Lustre and James Reid.

And lastly, a powerful and gritty crime drama titled Honor Thy Father, starring John Lloyd Cruz, Meryll Soriano, and Khalil Ramos.

All of these films will be shown in most theaters across the Philippines this Christmas Day. Which of these entries will you watch this Christmas? (For most of you, I believe it would be the one with AlDub on it)

Our favorite Robot Chicken Star Wars jokes

Courtesy: Cartoon Network

Continuing on the Star Wars celebration in honor of the upcoming Star Wars: The Force Awakens, in theaters this Friday, let's take a look of some of the most insaniest, most politically incorrect, Star Wars jokes pulled by Adult Swim's mentally insane stop-motion comedy gag show, Robot Chicken. From the first Robot Chicken Star Wars special, to Episode II, up to Episode III, those three Star Wars specials sure know how to make a Star Wars joke the morally incorrect but outrageously funny sort of way.

1) Imagine a fateful moment when you encountered George Lucas at a Star Wars convention. That will be so

2) It's hard being a Stormtrooper taking your kid on a "Take your daughter to work day". As a matter of fact, parenthood is the harshest thing of our lives.

3) Hey, Han. Shoot your gun, not your mouth, wise guy.

4) Of course, Luke Skywalker was shocked when Darth Vader is his father but there's more to it than that...

5) George W. Bush is addicted to...The Force.

6) Luke Skywalker and Emperor Palpatine battle it out in a Yo Momma fight.

7) Could Emperor Palpatine's day get any worse?!

8) Boba Fett's back from the dead, a-holes!

9) You thought your best friend's a traitor after being lured by the Empire? Still, could be worse...

10) The Empire on Ice!

For some hilarious Robot Chicken Star Wars clips, visit

Star Wars: The Force Awakens is showing in theaters this December 18. Be sure to watch Robot Chicken on Cartoon Network's Adult Swim late-night block.

Let's Do The News! (December 16, 2015)

- As Typhoon Nona lingers and weakens, Tropical Depression Onyok has entered the Philippine Area of Responsibility. According to PAGASA, Onyok entered the country's territory at around 1345 hours, Philippine Time. They also assured that because two of these weather disturbances don't have the same strength, they will not affect each other. Onyok is expected to make landfall into the Davao-Caraga region by Friday, the same day Nona exits the PAR.

- The Supreme Court junks petition against Comelec's campaign where registered voters who failed to record their biometrics will not be able to vote in the May 2016 elections. The petition was junked due to lack of merit and dissolved the December 1 TRO. As a result, three million voters have failed to register their biometrics for the elections.

- Nine leading contenders for the US Republican Party nomination for president took part in the final televised GOP debate in Las Vegas. The controversial proposal by frontrunner Donald Trump to ban all Muslims from entering the US was centered and Trump defended the plan, calling it a necessary counter-terrorism measure and a matter of national security. He states that if he becomes president, he will force Syrian refugees to leave the country. Other candidates opposed his idea, even former Florida governor Jeb Bush called it "unserious" and called Trump a "chaos candidate". Jeb states that the US needs the Muslims' help to fend off the ISIS.

- The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has formed a 34-member Islamic military alliance to fight terrorism with a joint operations center based in Riyadh, the capital city of Saudi Arabia. Members include Turkey, Egypt, Nigeria, and Pakistan and it does not include rival nation Iran, Iraq, and Syria, where US-led airstrikes against the Islamic State militants continue.

- South Korean airport authorities noted that the black powder found in the hand luggage of a man arrested in Japan in connection to the Yasukuni Shrine explosion last November 23rd are tested negative and no sign of gunpowder found. Tokyo authorities suspect the South Korean man of place an explosive device in a restroom at the shrine and returned to South Korea shortly after the explosion. Last Wednesday, he was arrested when he arrived at Tokyo's Haneda Airport on suspicion of illegal entry into a building.

- There is a confirmation that the cause of death of seiyuu Miyu Matsuki (known for being Yoshinoya-sensei from Hidamari Sketch series and Isumi Saginomiya from the Hayate the Combat Butler series) was in the form of a chronic active Epstein-Barr virus infection, which led her to a terminal case of malignant lymphoma. Matsuki died last 27th of October.

- Konami Corporation confirmed that Metal Gear franchise creator Hideo Kojima has left the company due to his contract expiration this month. Of course, even with Hideo's departure, support for the recently launched Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain and its Metal Gear Online: Tactical Team Operations mode will continue. As Hideo leaves Konami, he started his own stand-alone Kojima Productions and he will collaborate with Sony Computer Entertainment, Inc. for a new PS4 game in the works.

- Mercedes-Benz unveiled the all-new SLC roadster, a replacement to the SLK (although this is basically a minor change of the outgoing SLK). With every bits and bobs carried over from the old SLK, the SLC is offered with new engines including a 1.6L turbo and a the first-ever SLC43 AMG. Unlike the old SLK55 AMG which uses a naturally-aspirated 5.5L V8 mated to a seven-speed gearbox, the new Mercedes-AMG SLC43 is powered by a smaller 3.0L V6 engine mated with a hefty 9G-TRONIC gearbox. Although it's a fraction slower than the old SLK55, it retains its limited top speed of 250kph but it's now more economical than ever. It will debut at next month's NAIAS.

2017 Mercedes-AMG SLC43 AMG

- Infiniti will feature a facelifted QX60 crossover and an updated Q50 saloon, now with a brand new 3.0L V6 turbo engine variant, on next month's North America International Auto Show.

2016 Infiniti QX60
2016 Infiniti Q50

- In case you missed the recent Eat Bulaga kalyeserye, today marks the 5th monthsary of AlDub and for a treat, the three lolas and Yaya Dub visited the Broadway Centrum once again. While Lola Nidora and her sisters got their spa day (which presumably is a trap), Alden and Yaya Dub wowed the Broadway Centrum audience as well as the presenters. After a day out at the studio, looks like Yaya Dub confirmed the whereabouts of her dad. If Yaya Dub's dad is last seen somewhere in Cebu, will AlDub and the lolas go there too? Tune in next time and find out.


A history of "Tales Of" mothership titles

The first mothership title of Namco's Tales of series, Tales of Phantasia, was launched in Japan for the Super Famicom on the 15th of December, 1995. 2015 marks the 20th year of Bandai Namco's iconic Tales of series. What might not be a better way than rediscovering the list of Tales of's mothership titles. Take note, THE mothership titles because they have strong importance in the history of the Tales franchise.

Tales of 20 years celebration
(Courtesy: BNEI)

Tales of Phantasia - This is probably the forefather of Namco's Tales franchise and the one of the most iconic JRPGs of all time. Phantasia centers on the story of a young man named Cress, who lives in the village of Toltus, and while he was hunting with his pal Chester, strange things are happening through time and space and it's up to Cress to find out. One of the most hallmarks in this game that sets the template in future Tales titles is the Linear Motion Battle, which is somewhat less complicating and very clever. In the SFC version, Flexible Voice Driver's implied to deliver high-quality voiceovers, which is very unheard of in a Super Famicom but it works.

Tales of Destiny - After the success of Tales of Phantasia, the producers of the franchise decided to make another Tales game, only this time on the original Sony PlayStation. Called Tales of Destiny, it ventures on the story of Stahn Aileron, who encounters a mysterious sword that triggers series of cataclysmic events and he sets off on a journey along with his allies in the quest to uncover the secrets of an ancient civilization. This game was launched in Japan on the PSX on the 23rd of December, 1997, with a remastered PS2 version followed on the 30th of November, 2006.

Tales of Eternia - The dawn of the 21st century deserves the dawn of the next Tales and launched on the PSX on November 30, 2000 (with a PSP version followed five years later), Tales of Eternia ventures on the story of Reid, Farah, and other valiant heroes as they venture out from the village of Rasheans to uncharted territories in order to avert a prophesized cataclysm. Following the game, there was an anime version of the said game aired on the 8th of January, 2001.

Tales of Destiny 2 - Sequel to the 1997 PSX game, it's the first Tales game made for the Playstation 2. Launched in the 28th November 2002 (with a PSP version followed on the 15th of February, 2007) the sequel takes 18 years after the events of the original Tales of Destiny. It now revolves on a story of a young boy named Kyle Dunamis as he set off to a journey to make new friends, solve mysteries, and in due course, prevent world chaos. This game comes with an improved Linear Motion Battle System with added Trust and Tactical features.

Tales of Symphonia - Probably known to be one of the most iconic of all the Tales games, Tales of Symphonia features an innovative battle system with numerous special attacks, spells, and combos, it also comes with a customizable growth system which allows you to change your fighting style and alter the storyline according to the character's relationships. Aside from the battles, there's also a wide variety of minigames and side quests for added gameplay value. As Lloyd Irving, Colette Brunel, and Genis Sage, they must venture out to reveal the prophecy of the Chosen One that will spell salvation in a dying village on Sylvarant, team up with iconic allies, and avert the cataclysm plotted by evil forces. We love the characters in this installment, especially Refill (Raine) Sage, Sheena Fujibayashi, Presea Combatir (one who's doing the iconic Klonoa catchphrase), Regal Bryant, and more importantly, Zelos Wilder. The Gamecube version was launched on the 29th of August, 2003 while a PS2 version was launched a year later. It was included in the Unisonant Pack for the PS3 in 2013, in honor of Symphonia's 10th anniversary. Aside from that, there's even an anime series titled "Tales of Symphonia: The Animation" as well.

Tales of Rebirth - One of the most dramatic installment of the Tales series, Set in the world where humans and beasts live in harmony, Rebirth centers on the story of Veigue Lungberg as he is one of the characters possessed by the Force from the fallen King and work together with a handful of allies as the story progresses in order to prevent further threats to the kingdom of Karegia by a primordial destructive force. The PS2 version was launched in the 16th of December, 2004, while the PSP version was launched on the 19th of March, 2005.

Tales of Legendia - Continuing on the Tales action on the PS2, Tales of Legendia centers on the role of Senel Coolidge as he explores the mystery of the giant mysterious ship he encountered alongside his sister. This game features a more dynamic approach to the LMBS, called X-LMBS, which allows the player to fight enemies like a fighting game. This game was launched on the 25th of August, 2005.

Tales of the Abyss - Tales of the Abyss is known to be one of the most enjoyable Tales game on the PS2. The story revolves on a young aristocrat named Luke fon Fabre. After being kidnapped seven years ago, he returns to his family with no memories of him. However, he was thrown into the outside world to become one of the Oracle Knights, served to protect the prophecy known as the Score. Choices play a crucial part in this game. Do the story right, you'll get a good ending. But get it wrong, you might end up on a horrid bad ending. The game was launched on the 15th of December, 2005, about the same date when the Tales series celebrated its 10th year. Talk about a birthday gift, per se?

Tales of Innocence - This is the first Tales game launched on the Nintendo DS, Innocence centers on a young boy named Luca Mildan, the reincarnation of the Sensus general Asura, his quest is to awaken his hidden supernatural powers to protect his friends and put a stop to Regnum's military insurgence. This game was launched for the DS on the 6th of December, 2007, following with the updated version called Tales of Innocence R for the PS Vita on the 26th of January, 2012.

Tales of Symphonia: Ratatosk no Kishi - Sequel to the original Symphonia game, Ratatosk no Kishi (Dawn of the New World) centers on two main characters Emil Castagnier and Marta Lualdi as they're seeking redemption from their darkest pasts after a cataclysmic regeneration of the world while uncovering the secrets of the Summon Spirit Ratatosk. One of our favorite part in this sequel is the Monster Pacts where enemy monsters you've encounter or fought may have a chance to join you. This cool feature really turn the battle to your favor if you get it right and have adequate strengths your monsters had. This game was launched on the Wii on the 26th of June, 2008, and it was included in the Tales of Symphonia Unisonant Pack for the PS3 on 2013.

Tales of Hearts - Of course with Tales of Innocence on the DS is a proven hit, there's another Tales DS game offered a year later, known as Tales of Hearts. As a young boy named Shing Meteorite (Kor Meteor), his encounter with Kohaku and Hisui spiralled his life and upon saving her at the cost of her Spiria, he must venture on the quest to restore Kohaku's Spiria and in due course, avert the cataclysm The DS version offers two different versions; a CG movie version and an Anime movie version. Both were launched on the DS in the 18th of December, 2008. Just like Innocence, there's a PS Vita remastered version, called Tales of Hearts R, launched on the 7th of March, 2013.

Tales of Vesperia - Love it or hate it, this is the first Tales title made for the XBOX 360 and it pushed the Tales franchise even further with greater storyline, greater graphics, an updated LMBS, and memorable cast of characters. The story centers on a former knight named Yuri Lowell as he delves on a mysterious plot to gain control of the magical devices that will spell salvation or doom to the world reliant on the ancient technology known as the blastia. The XBOX 360 version launched on the 7th of August, 2008 with a PS3 version followed on the 17th of September, 2009. To keep the mania going in, there was a feature length film titled Tales of Vesperia ~The First Strike~, shown in theaters the same year the PS3 version was launched.

Tales of Graces - Set on the planet of Efinea, Tales of Graces centers on a young man named Asbel Lhant as he was drawn in a conflict between rival factions vying for world domination. With the help of his childhood friends and a mysterious girl named Sophie, they must work together to put an end to the meaningless conflict and bring back peace to their home planet. This game was launched on the Wii on the 10th of December, 2009, with a reloaded version for the PS3, titled Tales of Graces f, launched on the 2nd of December, 2010, packed with added extras.

Tales of Xillia - Two sides, one story. Tales of Xillia allows players choose between the story of Jude Mathis, a medical student, and Milla Maxwell, a mysterious woman accompanied by the Four Great Spirits. Whichever character you choose, your quest on a world where humans and spirits live in harmony begins and as you meet new friends, fought tough enemies, and solving puzzles, you are closer to uncover the secrets of an ancient civilization. This game was launched on the PS3 on the 8th of September, 2011.

Tales of Xillia 2 - Set after the events of the original Xillia, this sequel centers on a young cook named Ludger Kresnik who wants to follow his brother's footsteps and work as an agent of Spirius Corporation. However, his encounter with a young girl named Elle Marta, who tries to reunite her father at the Land of Canaan, changes everything. This game was launched on the PS3 on the 1st of November, 2012.

Tales of Zestiria - This is the latest installment of the Tales franchise and the biggest birthday present in celebration of the Tales franchise' 20th year. It was launched on the PS3 console on the 22nd of January, 2015. Amazingly, Tales of Zestiria is a hybrid game because not only it has the main game on it but also comes with the complete TV mini-series of the same title, serving as the taste of what lies ahead of the main character Sorey and his allies on their epic journey to save the world from an imminent threat, so you can experience the dramatic storyline that you can expect once you start the game and go on an epic journey as Sorey and his friends.

The battle system has been evolved from the past Tales of games and now, TOZ features a brand new "Fusonic Chain - Linear Motion Battle System (LMBS)" which gives the series' real-time battle system a whole new overhaul and features a gauge that allows characters free battle to their heart's content and effects such as healing and blowing away enemies are usable. Also, this battle system comes with the brand new "Kamui" feature and don't tell them what that is because this feature lets Sorey join forces with Heavenly Beings such as Lailah, changing his form and unleash a barrage of powers to blow away the opposition. Now this is a strategic work players need to master if they want to survive the battlefield.

Aside from new ways to battle, there are other ways to do on foot as well. You can engage in a chat sequence (which is kinda like the skit part from past titles), clear obstacles, accessorize your characters with new outfits and accessories, engage in optional subevents, test your battle skills on the colosseum, and so much more. There are so much to do while you're taking a break on the main quest or if you need a little boost on what lies ahead.

Tales of Berseria - Coming soon this 2016 on the PS3 and PS4 consoles, the upcoming chapter of the Tales franchise sees a break of tradition because for the first time in Tales history, it now centers on a female protagonist in the form of Velvet.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

(Sorta) Remembering those Family Guy Star Wars spoof specials

Continuing on the Star Wars celebration in honor of the upcoming Star Wars: The Force Awakens, who else remember the time that FOX's animated sitcom, Family Guy, once spoofed the Star Wars trilogy from A NEW HOPE to the RETURN OF THE JEDI? Yes, I know, that show is well notorious for putting Star Wars references through the years and who can blame them? It's the producers to blame for putting Star Wars jokes in the hit TV show but the biggest of all the Star Wars jokes in the show is those Family Guy Star Wars spoof specials, just to keep them from moaning about this show has too much Star Wars jokes on it.

For some purposes, the Family Guy producers imagine what would Luke Skywalker be like if Darth Vader is his brother, Han Solo is his dad, and Princess Leia is his mom. That's why they've pitched in Chris Griffin as Luke, Stewie Griffin as Darth Vader, Peter Griffin as Han Solo, and Lois Griffin as Princess Leia, among many others including Brian as Chewbacca, Cleveland as R2-D2, Quagmire as C-3PO, and Herbert as Obi-Wan Kenobi.

First up, there's FAMILY GUY's take on STAR WARS: A NEW HOPE, called Blue Harvest. Well, you don't need me to explain about what just happened, it's more of Family Guy's retelling of the first Star Wars film made. From Mos Eisley to the Millennium Falcon, there is no bit of A NEW HOPE is safe from signature Family Guy moments. We kinda enjoy the one part where Herbert (as Obi-Wan) does Dirty Dancing.  The sofa joke is not so bad, but the climactic battle at the Death Star is what punched me through.

Two years later, THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK has been spoofed and retold in SOMETHING, SOMETHING SOMETHING DARK SIDE. Yep, that title of Family Guy's spoof of The Empire Strikes Back kinda remind you of a cutaway gag where the Emperor tries to figure out the Star Wars dialog. "Something, Something, Something, Dark Side. Something Something Complete." Anyway, in here, Luke (Chris) has a vision of his late mentor Obi-Wan (Herbert), telling him to go through the Dagobah system to meet Yoda (Carl). Meanwhile, Leia (Lois) and Han (Peter) are in love until a fateful encounter with Lando Calrissian (Mort) lured him to the Empire. It all ends when Luke faces off with Darth Vader and there goes...well, you know the iconic part.

IT'S A TRAP is the conclusion of the Family Guy Star Wars spoof specials and it's basically the spoofed version of STAR WARS: THE RETURN OF THE JEDI. In the finale, we can see Lois' dad, Carter, (who was Uncle Owen in the first one) re-emerged as the nefarious Emperor Palpatine as well as Peter's paraplegic best friend Joe as Jabba the Hutt. Cleveland Show's Rallo and Fred and American Dad's Klaus made special appearances as well. It's worth more enjoyable to watch than seeing Luke (Chris) accidentally broke Darth Vader (Stewie)'s head before escaping the second Death Star, getting ready to be blown by the rebel squadrons.

So, those Family Guy Star Wars spoof specials, they maybe more of an insult to the original Star Wars films buy for an average Family Guy fan, they're worth enjoyable to watch over and over and over again. Sadly though, these hilarious trilogies were not as hilarious as what the stop-motion gag show Robot Chicken did to Star Wars. That thing comes later.

If you haven't seen these three specials, they're available to stream via Amazon or Netflix. Star Wars: The Force Awakens is showing in theaters this 18th of December. And watch Family Guy on FOX. Check local listings.

Let's Do The News! (December 15, 2015)

- The first official casualty of the Typhoon Nona was reported in Northern Samar, one of the areas hit by Typhoon Nona. So far, the typhoon made its fifth landfall in Pinamalayan, Oriental Mindoro on Tuesday. As of 1000 hours, Philippine Time, Nona has maximum sustained winds of 140kph and gusts of up to 170kph. It is forecasted to move west at 15kph.

- US President Barack Obama is calling all nations to step up military campaigns in the ongoing fight against the Islamic State militants. He says the US-led coalition has recaptured areas under IS control but needs to further intensify operations.

- Egyptian authorities found no evidence of terrorism in the fatal downing of a Russian passenger jet in eastern Egypt two months ago. Despite showing no proof of terrorism over the downed plane, all Egyptian airports will have tightened security.

- COMELEC announced that it has postponed the release of the official list of candidates for the May 2016 elections to the 23rd of December. This will give them plenty of time to finalize the list of candidates as the printing of ballots is scheduled next month.

- Indian conglomerate Mahindra has taken over Italian design firm Pininfarina for $28 million.

- The new Mercedes-AMG S65 Cabriolet was unveiled and it offers the same thrills as the coupe version, only with the top off.

2017 Mercedes-AMG S65 Cabriolet

- Mazda will display Racing Concept versions of their current lineup as well as Racing Spec versions of the Roadster ND and the Demio, and two concept cars at next month's Tokyo Auto Salon.

- More THE IDOLM@STER Cinderella Girls merchandise closing in! It's a Nendoroid of Triad Primus' Nao Kamiya! She's open for pre-orders starting at 3,611 Yen plus tax. She'll be arriving this May 2015.

Nendoroid Nao Kamiya

- Following last year's Diancie and this year's Hoopa, the world of Pokemon gave us a glimpse of next year's mythical Pokemon set to appear in next year's film. Meet the Steam Pokemon Volcanion! Volcanion is a Fire-and-Water-type Pokemon, which is unheard of for some Pokemon masters too many. Additional details will be revealed next year, in time with Pokemon's 20 year celebration.

- In case you missed the recent Eat Bulaga kalyeserye, while Yaya Dub is busy selling overpriced barbecue that no one will buy, Alden Richards steps in to cheer Yaya Dub up. Meanwhile, a familiar face appeared and yep, it's that Cindy Kournikova again, stepping in to say hi to AlDub and then that's it. Moments later, Yaya Dub told something that her long-lost dad, Dodong, is still living. Alden promises that they will work together to find her dad as long as the Lolas didn't notice it. The question is, will the AlDub be able to find her dad? Tune in next time and find out!


Forza Motorsport 6: The big One:1 megacar


After moments of waiting, it's finally arrived. The megacar every Forza fan's desperate to get their hands on in the world of Forza and courtesy of the Mobil 1 Car Pack, the long-awaited Koenigsegg One:1 megacar has landed for us to toy around.

With Koenigsegg very proud of their works such as the Agera, the Agera R, and the Agera S, the Swedish car manufacturer uncovered their first ever "megacar" in the world; the One:1. This megacar debuted at the 2014 Geneva Motor Show.

As the name implies, this megacar has the virtually impossible power to weight ratio of 1PS per 1kg weight, thanks to the 5.0L twin-turbocharged V8 engine developing 1360PS of power and the car weighs 1360kg. It is mated with a specially developed 7-speed DCT.

For aerodynamic purposes, the One:1 trades the Agera's removable roof for an airscoop on the roof, to generate more downforce. As a result, it does 0-100kph in less than 2.8 seconds and a theoretical top speed of 440kph.

Koenigsegg has built six of these models and all six of these models have already been sold.


It's a dream come true for every hardcore Forza fan to get their hands on this monstrous machine built by Koenigsegg and as the only car in the world that eclipsed the impossible power-to-weight ratio, no one comes close, not even the so-called Holy Trinity of hypercars.For some people who already heard of it, they were scratching their heads, wondering what's like to be inside the One:1.

Because this is a ultra-powerful hypercar with its power-to-weight ratio beyond compare, driving one for the first time can be deemed to be very difficult because with all that torque implied in this megacar, wheelspin starts are very likely so drivers need to find the ideal start to get this One:1 smoothly. And then there's the handling because its dynamics are very intimidating, even a skillful driver might get ensnared by the One:1's menacing characteristics. It's difficult to handle the One:1 but the more you use it, the more you are learning how to drive the first ever megacar in the world.

To see how much "mega" this One:1 is, I devise a little test at the Top Gear Test Track. The fastest car in the Top Gear Test Track is the Pagani Huayra with a lap time of 01:13.8. The objective is to lap this One:1 faster than the lap time set by the Huayra. If it does, looks like the producers need to do some reevaluation on putting this car round the Top Gear track in the foreseeable future.

After a lap round the Top Gear track, I've set a lap time in the One:1 round the Top Gear track in 1:13.564. That's faster than the Pagani Huayra that The Stig set foot round the track years ago, although I could use a little more practice to go round faster than my recent personal best, though. With that kind of result, I sure wish the folks from Top Gear put this car round the track to see how it performs in the real world.

In the meantime, let's take time to enjoy the raw firepower in the car that will be forever be known in the pages of history as the world's first megacar created by the hands of Koenigsegg. With that kind of performance, no other hypercar comes close.

Monday, December 14, 2015

Some Star Wars-themed car commercials

Star Wars' R2-D2 and C-3PO once appeared in
a Japanese Mitsubishi commercial in the 90's

Star Wars: The Force Awakens is hitting theaters this week, so why not take a trip down memory lane to take a gander on some Star Wars-themed car commercials from a past far far away to now?

First up, there's the Mitsubishi Star Cars commercial in Japan back in the 1990's. Mitsubishi pitched in Star Wars' R2-D2 and C-3PO to promote Mitsubishi cars.


Who can't forget the 2011 Big Game ad from Volkswagen USA featuring a little kid in his Darth Vader costume using the force in everything especially the VW Passat?

Of course, a year later, bits of Star Wars appeared in the 2012 Big Game ad from VW USA, this time in a 21st Century Beetle. Specifically, those came after a commercial where a dog chases a VW Beetle.

Back in Japan, R2-D2 and C-3PO returned and this time, they've been pitched by Toyota to promote the Prius PHEV.

A year later, Stormtroopers making an appearance in a Japanese Nissan Juke commercial. At least one Stormtrooper wants to be a standout...

And now it's come to this. With the impending launch of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Disney and Lucasfilm teamed up with FCA to promote the film with a little help of Dodge, Chrysler, Fiat, Jeep, and RAM Trucks.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens hits theaters on the 18th of December, 2015. May the Force Be With You.

Let's Do The News! (December 14, 2015)

- Typhoon Nona (Melor) made a landfall in Samar and PAGASA is expecting another landfall in Sorsogon tonight. At 1000 hours, Philippine Time, Nona was located 85km east of Catarman, Northern Sama with max winds of 150kph near the center and gusts of up to 185kph. It is likely to move west at 17kph.

- Due to the persistent reports of the Abu Sayyaf Group and the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters' plan to attack and engage in kidnap-for-ransom activities, several places in the Philippines including tourist spots were placed in terrorism threat level 3 or high terrorism threat category. It includes Palawan, Boracay, Zamboanga City, Zamboanga del Norte, Zamboanga Sibugay, Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat, Kidapawan, North Cotabato, Maguindanao, Basilan, Sulu, Tawi-Tawi, and Marawi. Metro Manila was placed in level 2 due to the convergence of people during the holiday season.

- Turkey reacts calmly to a Russian warship's firing of so-called "warning shots" at a Turkish fishing boat in the Aegean sea. According to the Turkish foreign minister, the Turkish boat targeted by the Russian vessel has been confirmed and the Turkish government is investigating the matter and would make an announced if further info is obtained.

- About twenty female candidates won municipal council seats in Saturday's elections in Saudi Arabia. For the first time in the nation's history. women were allowed to vote and run in the elections. Over 2,100 seats on 284 municipal councils nationwide were opened for the chosen candidates and some say, about 900 female candidates stood up.

- Back to the French elections, the far-right anti-immigration National Front has failed to win a region. None of the parties gained over 50% of the votes in the first vote on the 6th of December. So those that won over 10% fielded candidates for the second round on Sunday. The emerged party in this round is none other than the Republican Party, led by former president Nicolas Sarkozy, which gained 8 regions. The left-win governing coalition led by president Francois Hollande's Socialist Party is expected to win five regions.

- The members of Burma's National League for Democracy began their clean-up campaign in the streets across the country. Last month, the party led by Aung Sang Suu Kyi won a landslide victory over the military-led government and it will form a new government led by pro-democracy forces next March.

- Citroen unveiled the e-Mehari and this electric car is amazingly the production version of the Cactus M Concept as seen on the Frankfurt Motor Show. It is the first electric car produced and developed by Citroen and it's set to be available this Spring 2016. It's powered by a 50kW electric motor capable of top speed up to 110mph and boasting 200km of city-driving range.

Citroen e-Mehari

- As anyone who enjoyed last weekend's Wake Up, Girls second movie titled Beyond the Bottom as well as the Beyond the Bottom Extend live event, we heard that new projects in the world of WUG is underway. First up, the show's rival idol group, the I-1 Club will take over Wake Up, Girls. We don't know what but anyway, I-1 Club's new single, 止まらない未来, will hit record stores on the 13th of January alongside Next Storm's new single, Resurrection. Meanwhile, the Wake Up, Girls will be performing alongside i☆Ris (the group behind the songs from the Pripara anime as you know) in a special Valentine's Day concert held at the Maihama Amphitheater on the 14th of February, 2016.

- Actress Denise Laurel was named as the grand winner on the second season of ABS-CBN's celebrity impersonating TV show, Your Face Sounds Familiar

- In case you missed the recent Eat Bulaga kalyeserye; the Kalye's Angels and Yaya Dub began their life being broke in the aftermath of losing their beloved mansion. Luckily for Lola Nidora and Yaya Dub, they found a place to stay but the place they'll be staying for the night looks abandoned. Even though the place they'll be staying for the night looks abandoned, the girls decided to spending their lunch here until Alden Richards comes in to help them. Minutes later, Lola Nidora received a letter but what does the letter said? Tune in next time and find out!


Second-Generation Jaguar XF

Once served as the replacement for the lackluster S-Type, the Jaguar XF was designed to take on the likes of BMW's 5-Series, Mercedes E-Class, and the Audi A6, and for this all-new second-generation model, the new Jaguar XF promises to be quite a seducing take on the premium midsize saloon craze while delivering its intimidating character that Jaguar promises to be "Good to be Bad".

2016 Jaguar XF

Looks more promising, isn't it? For this new model, it looks like an enlarged version of its baby brother, the recently-launched XE, but while the XE is made to intimidate the smaller luxury cars in its caliber, the new XF is made to bewilder its rivals in terms of style and performance. One look at the XF and you can't tell how seducing this new model is and then, the interior...

2016 Jaguar XF interior

Well, it somewhat resembles to the inside of the XE but the XF's well-lavished interior really brings the shame on uniformal interiors of today's German saloons, although the JLR-trademark rotating shift knob remains quite an annoyance for some car enthusiasts. Despite being shorter than the previous model, the wheelbase is surprisingly longer, meaning it's well spacious in the back as well. Although the interior of the new XF is well-tailored in its own right, perhaps there's one missing in terms of evaluating it and I have a clever way. First get a girl with red hair to be seating in the front passenger seat and then do a fake out make out on her. You know what I'm saying?

2016 Jaguar XF

Anyway, time for the performance side and thanks to extensive use of aluminum, the new XF is surprisingly 190kg lighter than the previous model, and because it is lighter, you will be surprise how the new XF performs. In terms of comfort, it's as warm as a music box playing a beautiful song, but when you let it all out, its dynamic character can intimidate its opposition like a wild jackal hunting down its prey. If this new XF sticks to its "Good to be Bad" motto, then this is worth the try to scare the Germans into fruition.

Engine choices include a healthy dose of a 2.0L GTDi, 3.0L Supercharged V6, 2.0 diesel, and a 3.0 diesel engine. Most of these engines are Euro 6 compliant. The most powerful in the lineup is the 3.0L Supercharged V6 on the XF-S. This engine produces 381PS of power and 450Nm of torque. In rear-wheel drive or four-wheel drive alike, it will do 0-60mph in 5.3 seconds, which sounds reasonably quick for a sports saloon. Depending on the model, the transmission can either be a six-speed or an eight-speed automatic gearbox respectively.

2016 Jaguar XF
Even though the new XF is as intimidating as Jaguars can get, it's surprisingly technological as well. It comes with All Surface Progress Control, HUD Display with laser technology, virtual instrument display similar to Audis of today have, InControl services, Autonomous Emergency Braking, and of course, an available Meridian Sound System.

The new XF starts from 32,300 to 49,945 GBP and while this sounds like a lot for a luxury car of that size, the new XF promises to be quite a worthy contender in the premium midsize saloon stakes and with everything loaded in its latest regeneration, the new XF is a well-proven starting point for Jaguar and in the future, we can expect great things to come in the new XF, including a more high-performance model coming soon. In the meantime, let's see how far and how exciting the new XF goes and it takes some modern ways to convince anyone to get their hands on it.
Available Colors: Ebony Black, Polaris White, Ammonite Grey, Aurora Red, British Racing Green, Dark Sapphire, Glacier White, Italian Racing Red, Odyssey Red, Quartzite, Rhodium Silver, Ultimate Black.Black Berry, Storm Grey, Tempest Grey, Celestial Black, and Ingot.

Photo: Jaguar Land Rover
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