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Month: February 2019

British hospital uses miniature cars to ease kids’ worries ahead of surgery

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The last place kids want to spend time is in the hospital, but one medical center in Britain has a fleet of miniature cars to help kids keep their minds off of surgery.

The BBC reported on the mini cars used at the James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough, highlighting a frequent visitor named Alfie.

Alfie requires constant medical attention, but he certainly loves stepping into a mini Bentley car to ride around the hospital hallways with. We see in the video the hospital operates a range of cars in its fleet. There’s an Audi R8, Tesla Model S, a Mercedes-Benz, and a Bentley Bentayga. Surely, the hospital will continue to add to its roster of luxury and sports cars for the youngest patients.

CHECK OUT: Duh of the Day: Boys Like Cars Even As Very Small Children

Alfie says the cars make him feel really good and he loves driving “super-duper, duper fast” in the Bentley.

Every young patient is able to choose the car he or she would like to drive to their operation appointment in hopes the cars ease their nerves and calm them before heading in for surgery. For children, it’s the little things that can make a big difference.

The Car Connection thanks our tipster, who prefers to remain an International Man of Mystery.

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2019 GMC Canyon Review, Ratings, Specs, Prices, and Photos

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The 2019 GMC Canyon is a mid-size pickup with hints of upscale flair, enough for a 5.2 out of 10 on our scale. (Read more about how we rate cars.)

Like its platform mate, the Chevrolet Colorado, the 2019 Canyon can’t quite stack up to its full-size companions, but at nearly 19 feet from end to end, it’s no small fry. The Canyon comes in several trim levels, SL, Canyon, SLE, All Terrain, SLT, and Denali, ranging from utilitarian to near-luxury. Those who opt for the All Terrain trim will get a helping of off-road styling details, but this is no rock climber like the Colorado ZR2.

For 2019, the Canyon got a mild refresh, including a new infotainment system with cloud-connected navigation and automatic software updates. There’s also the option for parking sensors, a 6-way power-adjustable driver seat on several trims, a new 17-inch SLE wheel design, and four new colors: Dark Sky Metallic, Smokey Quartz Metallic, Blue Emerald Metallic, and Sedona Metallic.

Review continues below

The Canyon comes in a variety of sizes, including extended- or crew-cab bodies with a short 5-foot-2 bed or long 6-foot-2 bed, with the long bed the only option on the extended cab version. Engine options include a 2.5-liter inline-4, 3.6-liter V-6, or turbodiesel 2.8-liter inline-4. A 6-speed manual transmission is standard on some inline-4 models, and a 6-speed automatic is optional for the gas and diesel 4-cylinder engines, while the V-6 can be had with an 8-speed automatic. The Canyon comes in either rear- or four-wheel drive like most pickups.

Though it’s no athlete, the Canyon is quiet and agreeable on road, and with the diesel can deliver up to 30 mpg on the highway. The mighty diesel also tows up to 7,700 pounds, meeting the usual needs for many pickup buyers.

While they share engines, platforms, and more, the Canyon and Colorado differ greatly in their trim levels and intended buyers. Where the Colorado ZR2 off-road bruiser represents the best Colorado money can buy, GMC’s Canyon Denali piles on chrome trim and luxury features for those looking for a posher pickup experience.

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Japan, EU push to make automatic emergency braking a requirement

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Forty countries have agreed to a United Nations regulation draft that calls for automatic emergency braking to be standard equipment on all new cars and commercial vehicles by early 2020. Chief among the countries are members of the European Union and Japan.

Reuters reported on the regulation draft Tuesday and countries will move to adopt the regulation in a June session of the UN. The language calls for automatic emergency braking systems to work at speeds up to 60 kph (roughly 37 mph). The EU and Japan have led the development of the regulation, which harmonizes the requirements for the systems and will make the systems required equipment in all new cars going forward. There is no regulation to fit older vehicles with the technology, which requires various sensors tied into vehicle steering and braking systems.

CHECK OUT: 20 automakers promise to make automatic braking standard by 2022

The U.S., China, and India are not part of the regulation, which reportedly builds upon an older standard set in 1958. However, automakers have previously committed to including automatic emergency braking systems as a standard feature in 99 percent of new cars sold in the U.S. by late 2021. The 20 major automakers that sell cars in the U.S. agreed to guidelines set by the NHTSA and the IIHS in 2016. 

The agreement hasn’t stopped the NTSB from making its own calls for Congress to act. In the government agency’s annual wish list for the legislative body, it asked Congress to make automatic emergency braking systems standard on all cars by law. It also said the technology should be mandated on every new motorhome, bus, and semi truck on U.S. roads.

READ THIS: The 10 cheapest new cars with automatic emergency braking

More automakers have already begun to include automatic emergency braking as standard equipment. Often, the feature is bundled in a suite of additional active safety features such as active lane control and adaptive cruise control.

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