x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 18 January 2018

Abu Dhabi woman wins Volkswagen Jetta for a year

Rolls-Royce to reveal diamond centenary flying lady, AMG lets its clients loose at Yas, Porsche in Dubai Motorsport Festival offer and Ford bids to develop social networking tools.

One lucky winner has driven away from the Abu Dhabi Volkswagen showroom with a brand new Jetta after winning an online competition.

Dana Younis entered a Facebook competition organised by Volkswagen Middle East that saw winners in the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Jordan win the chance to drive the car for free for a year.

In Abu Dhabi, Younis successfully spotted a masked Jetta that had been placed in locations around the city, including Marina Mall, Khalidiya Mall, Airport Road and at the Hilton hotel. She took a photo of it and uploaded it to Facebook to win the prize.

The competition highlighted the redesigned Jetta that has already sold 9.6 million units worldwide since its launch earlier this year.

Younis received the prize in the Ali & Sons Volkswagen showroom last month from brand manager Ammar Al Johmani and sales manager Samer Doueier. "We were not surprised to see the buzz around the competition and we expect the hype to increase as the Jetta is better than before, with a price that makes it accessible," says Al Johmani.

The base price for the new car is Dh69,400.

Diamonds are a flying lady's best friend: Rolls-Royce marks occasion

To celebrate the centenary year of Rolls-Royce's Spirit of Ecstasy, one of the world's most recognisable motoring mascots, the company is to unveil a Dh900,000 diamond version at the Dubai International Motor Show.

A result of a collaboration between Rolls and Mouawad, an international diamond expert with more than 100 years of experience, the flying lady will be wearing 2,300 diamonds at the show.

The creation took three master craftsmen more than 350 hours to make and they used 38.53 carats of diamonds.

"Mouawad searches the world for the finest gems to create the highest-quality jewellery and Rolls-Royce builds what is known to be the pinnacle of automotive perfection," says Pascal Mouawad, co-guardian of the Mouawad brand. "It's our shared passion for creating the finest that has pulled us together on this venture."

And Rolls-Royce's regional director in the Middle East and Africa, says: "The Flying Lady has inspired everyone involved with Rolls-Royce throughout generations."

See the figure for yourself at the show (November 10 to 14).

AMG lets its clients loose

The Yas Marina Circuit is alive with the roar of engines, even though it's still a few weeks off from the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

This week, AMG, Mercedes-Benz's performance division, is hosting media, partners and clients alike at the circuit under the lights for a driver experience programme. The AMG Performance Tour has about 40 invitees per evening being allowed to try cars such as the SLS, the C 63 Coupé and saloon and the CLS 63, in various exercises under professional guidance. Participants are also treated to a "taxi ride" around the North Circuit in the SLS GT3 race car and are also given a sneak preview of the upcoming SLS Roadster, which will be available here in November.

"Yes, we end up selling a few cars after these events," says Frank Bernthaler, director of sales and marketing for Mercedes-Benz in the Middle East. "Some people head down the showrooms the next day.

"But it's not just about that. When you buy one of these cars, like the SLS, you'll never find out what it can really do on a public road. That's why we come to a circuit, a safe environment, and let customers feel what makes AMG cars so special."

The AMG Performance Tour, which started on Sunday, ends on Tuesday.

Porsche offers chance to attend Dubai Motorsport Festival

As part of Dubai Motorsport Festival, Porsche is kicking off its GT3 Cup Challenge by offering the chance to drive your Porsche at Dubai Autodrome for just Dh200.

The challenge coincides with national race day three and the first 200 people to respond will have free access to the Porsche paddocks and pit lane, get complimentary seats in the grandstand and be able to take advantage of free food.

The event is aimed at all the family and there will be a Porsche Kids Driving School, a Porsche Design Driver's Selection Shop and a great display of the latest prototypes, alongside the entire Porsche model range.

The action takes place on Friday and Saturday, November 4 and 5, from 11am to 8pm.

If you want to be part of the day, be quick to email contact@porschemarketing.com, stating what day you wish to attend and whether you want to race your own Porsche for Dh200 (first 60 respondents only).

Ford joins up with innovators to develop social networking tools

Ford has teamed up with New York-based innovations experts Bug Labs to research and develop advanced open-source in-car social networking tools.

Known as "OpenXC", the research platform is based on Bug Labs' open-source Bug System and will enable the developer community to quickly prototype ideas and test out affordable new connectivity concepts that could enhance Ford's future products.

The partnership aims to make connectivity more available, affordable and personalised for drivers.

"OpenXC is about creating a platform that is accessible to developers and quickly incorporates local market needs to offer innovative solutions at an affordable price," said K Venkatesh Prasad, of Infotronics, Ford Research and Innovation. "The platform is designed to help us answer the question of how Ford can accelerate the car connectivity experience, at a value proposition, for mature and emerging markets."