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Property Week News Feed: Electric van company signs at SREF’s Kensington Village

Fri, 06/07/2019 - 10:31
Electric vehicle company Arrival has taken 50,000 sq ft of office space at Schroder UK Real Estate Fund’s Kensington Village.
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The Car Connection News Feed: German firm tests external airbag for side-impact crashes

Fri, 06/07/2019 - 10:00
German automotive supplier ZF revealed its external airbag system Wednesday and said that the experimental safety feature has the ability to shield passengers and protect them to a greater extent in a side-impact crash. The system operates exactly like how it sounds. External airbags deploy on the exterior of the car should the system determine a...
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Property Week News Feed: Kier and Investec snap up Luton logistics site

Fri, 06/07/2019 - 09:47
Kier Property and Investec Structured Property Finance have acquired a six-acre logistics development site in Luton from Downton.
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Property Week News Feed: Monsoon delays CVA following Arcadia postponement

Fri, 06/07/2019 - 08:46
The owner of womenswear retailer Monsoon has delayed plans to launch a CVA after seeing Philip Green struggle to secure backing for his Arcadia restructure earlier in the week.
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Property Week News Feed: Monsoon has delayed its CVA

Fri, 06/07/2019 - 08:46
The owner of womenswear retailer Monsoon has delayed plans to launch a CVA after seeing Philip Green struggle to secure backing for his Arcadia restructure earlier in the week.
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Motortrend News Feed: Why Super Bowl Champ Vernon Davis Loves His BMW 750i and Maybach – Celebrity Drive

Fri, 06/07/2019 - 08:00

Quick Stats: Vernon Davis, Super Bowl champ/tight end, Washington Redskins
Daily Driver: 2018 BMW 750i (Vernon’s rating: 10 on a scale of 1 to 10)
Other cars: See below
Favorite road trip: Washington, D.C. to New York
Car he learned to drive in: 1996 Chevrolet Impala
First car bought: 2006 Cadillac Escalade

At 6-foot-3 and 244 pounds, Washington Redskins tight end Vernon Davis wanted a comfortable daily driver, and he found one in the 2018 BMW 750i.

“I love it because of the power, the mobility. It’s a big car that handles really, really well, and it’s crazy fast,” Davis tells MotorTrend. “I was looking for a car that can fit my kids comfortably. You can drive it every day, you can get around in and out of the city, an everyday car that can be used also for special events or just for your leisure. It’s just an amazing car all around.”

A 2016 BMW 750i is shown here

Even though Davis gives it a perfect 10, he has one slight complaint. “I wish it had more gadgets in it, that’s all,” he says. “I wish it had more technology in the center console and maybe in the back, as well.”

2016 Mercedes-Maybach S600

Rating: 9

Davis drives his Mercedes-Maybach on special occasions. “I love it because [although it’s] not as fast as the BMW, it still handles really, really well, and it looks amazing,” he says. “When you pull up, it’s like, ‘This car is fantastic.’”

He gives it a 9 because it’s one feature shy of the perfect luxury ride. “If the doors can open by itself, that would great. Especially [on] a grand car like that? Whew,” Davis says.

Davis drives this when he goes to a movie premiere. “It’s just one of those cars I bring out every once in a while,” he says. “…When we’re going to nice places, restaurants, games, breakfast.”

The car reminds him of a saying, “If you look good, you feel good; if you feel good, you play good.”

“When you get in that car, you feel really good about yourself. If you’re going about your day, you know that you’re getting into a nice vehicle,” he says.

His kids wish this could be the family’s daily driver. “Oh my gosh, the kids love it. Every time when we’re not driving it, it’s like, ‘Daddy, how come we can’t drive that car? We love it.’ Sometimes when I’m in the kitchen, I’ll be like, ‘Wow, they’re inside the car,’” he says, laughing.

Car he learned to drive in

Davis learned to drive around the streets of northwest Washington, D.C. in his grandmother’s gold 1996 Chevrolet Impala.

“My aunt taught me. It started out with me sitting in her lap, and she would put my hands on the wheel and tell me to press the gas and she would be really cautious until I got the swing of it,” he says. “And then, after that, she sat in the passenger seat, and I was just going away, I was ready to go.”

He was 15 and eager to learn to drive as soon as he could. “You know how as a kid, you always wanted a remote control car for Christmas? That’s how I was. After I got done with remote control cars, I said, ‘I’m ready to drive.’ Forget the go karts, forget the little play toys, I’m ready to go, put me in Fast and Furious.”

Luckily, there was a great place nearby where he could practice driving. “There was a park right down the road. That park was really, really spacious, and a lot of people would go there so that they can get driving lessons. It was just one of those parks that I would go in and my grandmother would let me drive,” he recalls. “And once I learned how to wheel and deal, that’s when it was on. She bought me my very first car, which was an SUV.”

When he was a senior in high school, his grandmother bought him a used 1998 Chevrolet Tahoe. “I had that vehicle from the time I was a senior in high school all the way up until my junior year of college,” he says. “The only thing I remember, it was just one of those SUVs that I always wanted, and I cherished that car, I kept it for a long time. And I actually passed it down to my younger brother and it ended with him. He got rid of that car, it died a long time ago.”

First car bought

When Davis turned pro and got drafted to the San Francisco 49ers, he bought a new 2006 Cadillac Escalade. “It meant a lot to me to be able to just buy my own personal vehicle and to know that I didn’t rely on anyone,” he says.

Favorite road trip

“My favorite road trip memory is when my fiancée and I drove from Washington, D.C. to Pennsylvania, and then we drove all the way to New York and turned back around,” he says. “It was just a beautiful time. We shared a lot of memories [and] had an opportunity to learn more about each other. And just talked about all the problems we were having in our lives and solving those problems. It was just a great trip. It was just one of those trips that you’ll always remember.”

Images courtesy of Garrett Campbell, team photographer for the Washington Redskins.

Although people often take road trips during the summer, this one took place in the winter of 2017. “[There was] a lot of snow on the ground, and it felt like it was Christmas, but it wasn’t; it was February, and it was awesome,” he says. “The roads were clear, it was just a lot of snow along the side. The roads were super clear, it was just snow that wasn’t melted yet.”

The trip took about a week as the couple enjoyed themselves in Pennsylvania and New York. “It was a birthday plan for us, she wanted to take me to some places, so I drove and we made some fun of it. We stayed at the Poconos for two nights, and then we went to downtown Philadelphia … and then we went shopping and had dinner in New York, and went to an art gallery. And I got on the road and drove back. On our way driving back, we didn’t stop anywhere, we just did a straight drive.”

Off the football field, Davis has kept busy: “I’ve got to keep going,” he says.


Davis is not only a spokesman for PathWater, but he’s also an owner. “PathWater is a new way of drinking water. They’re eliminating single-use plastic water bottles,” he says. “The reason is because the ocean is being polluted, [and PathWater is] encouraging people to refill and not landfill. We had a meeting, and the synergy was just there. I just thought it was great that they were trying to save the environment like that, so it just fit in my wheelhouse.”

View this post on Instagram

We’re the @pathwater dudes. @guyfieri #drinkpath

A post shared by Vernon Davis (@vernondavis85) on Mar 9, 2019 at 3:27pm PST

Timeless Sports Nutrition

Davis is also a spokesman and an owner at Timeless Sports Nutrition, which is a supplement brand.

“I created it because I wanted to find a way to give people organic raw materials when it comes to the ingredients,” he says. “Just from my 14 years of playing in the NFL, I found that creating supplements and trying them for myself and letting tons of people try it, I was able to come up with the best product.”

Davis has always wanted to do this. “I’ve always been with supplement companies, I’ve always had deals with them, but I haven’t been able to create my own line and manipulate what goes into the supplements, so I was able to do that and it’s been great. We’re all about sports performance, recovery, and nutrient support.” The website is timelesssportsnutrition.com.

Hell on the Border

Davis just finished filming the movie Hell on the Border with Frank Grillo, Ron Perlman, and David Gyasi. “It’s a true story about the first black deputy in Mississippi. I’m a guy who’s transporting people from the South to Kansas.” He expects the movie to be out next year.


The post Why Super Bowl Champ Vernon Davis Loves His BMW 750i and Maybach – Celebrity Drive appeared first on MotorTrend.

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Motortrend News Feed: The 13 Most Fun-to-Drive 2019 Cars With 200 HP or Less

Fri, 06/07/2019 - 08:00

Car enthusiasts are mired in a conflict of escalation, active combat where tires and clutches are the casualties. It seems the horsepower wars have no end in sight, with increasingly powerful turbocharged or electrified weaponry rolling onto the battlefield every few weeks. But refuge can be found in cars that make drivers grin through nimble handling or affable character. Those that realize sheer horsepower isn’t the end-all, be-all of driving enjoyment will find safe haven in any of these fun-to-drive cars, each with 200 hp or less.

Hyundai Veloster

Refreshed for 2019, the Veloster maintains its three-door funkiness but improves on driving dynamics. The base I-4 engine grows to 2.0 liters, bringing output to 147 hp and 132 lb-ft of torque. The chassis is also upgraded, now stiffer and with multilink rear suspension. Transmissions include a six-speed manual or automatic with paddle shifters. In our First Drive, which also included the Veloster Turbo (too powerful for this list), we wrote that the “2.0 feels noticeably slower, though in Sport mode it does its gol-dangedest to deliver at least 60 percent of the driving joy. The engine’s song at high revs is sweet. Wide-open throttle runs are smooth. … Hyundai expects half of buyers to take the 2.0-liter; those folks won’t be disappointed.”

Subaru Crosstrek

You can’t have more fun at slow speeds than by driving off-road. Inching over trail obstacles requires as much driver involvement as ripping around corners on a track. The Subaru Crosstrek’s 152-hp 2.0-liter flat-four and CVT combo doesn’t provide brisk acceleration, but the hatchback makes off-road thrills available with 8.7 inches of ground clearance, a trail mode with hill descent control, and symmetrical all-wheel drive. Our long-term Crosstrek proved its mettle at a legitimate off-road park, driving through all kinds of obstacles, including a mud pit. “The crossover barely noticed the dirt, rocks, and sand beneath its tires,” we wrote. “It didn’t matter if it was a bumpy uphill or downhill, the Subaru handled the trails with relative ease.”

Honda Civic Sport

The Honda Civic has always combined reliability with fun—and the 2019 model year might be its best incarnation yet. Honda now offers a Sport trim across Civic coupe, sedan, and hatchback body styles. The first two get a 158-hp, 138-lb-ft 2.0-liter I-4, while the hatchback packs a 1.5-liter turbocharged I-4 with 174 hp and 162 lb-ft. All can be had with a CVT or six-speed manual, and all come with a cool center-exit exhaust. In our First Test of the hatchback Civic Sport, it left us feeling that “it’s not a total hot hatch … but it is still fun to drive. … The Hatchback Sport might not be screaming quick, but there’s a genuine sportiness to its handling that makes you want to fling it around in ways you wouldn’t normally treat a compact sedan.” Our tester had the six-speed manual, which we said “remains one of the best front-drive stick shifts around.”

Fiat 124 Spider Abarth

The Fiat 124 Spider Abarth provides tons of fun with only 164 hp and 184 lb-ft from its 1.4-liter turbocharged I-4. Sharing a platform with the Mazda Miata is a great starting point, but unique styling, revised suspension tuning, and shorter gearing give the 124 Abarth a distinct character. We pitted it in a six-way comparison that also included a Porsche 718 Boxster S and BMW M2. In our verdict we reflected on the essence of driving enjoyment, writing, “When it comes to cars, we all have our preferences. We could argue about the relative merits of a turbo engine’s midrange torque versus a naturally aspirated engine’s instant response. Or whether steering precision is more important than feedback at the wheel. But there’s one thing that you can’t argue with: the power of a smile.” The 124 Abarth’s grin-inducing power far exceeds its engine output, and for that it won the comparison.

Toyota Corolla Hatchback


The incredible happened when Toyota redid the Corolla Hatchback for 2019: it turned into something of a driver’s car. The improvement over previous Corollas was immediately noticed during our 2019 Car of the Year tests. Even with 168 hp and 151 lb-ft on tap from its 2.0-liter I-4, our judges mostly agreed that “this is the best-driving Corolla in a long time.” On our test track, “the solid and responsive chassis kept asking for more.” Chalk that up to this generation’s independent suspension at each corner and stiffer body structure. Even though the available six-speed manual isn’t one of our favorites, it’s far better than the CVT. Rumor has it a hotter GR version of the Corolla is in the pipeline, which will (hopefully) have more than 200 hp.

Mazda Miata

No surprise the perennially fun Miata makes this list. For 2019, however, it’s more muscular than before: Revised internals bump power up to 181 hp and 151 lb-ft from a 2.0-liter I-4 that now spins to 7,500 rpm. “Finally, the ND Miata got the engine it’s been begging for the last three years,” we wrote in our review. Brilliant handling remains unchanged, other than the option of a GT-S package, which sharpens things with new shocks and suspension tuning, a front strut tower brace, and a limited-slip differential. If any car proves you can have a great time with low power, it is—and always will be—the Miata.

Audi A3

The entry-level Audi A3 features luxury appointments at an approachable price. Even without Quattro all-wheel drive, the front-drive A3 2.0T offers a premium feel and a good amount of driving fun. The engine delivers 190 hp and 221 lb-ft and will spin the tires without much effort. In our review we wrote that the way the power is delivered “might be considered part of the A3’s character. The larger A4 feels more relaxed compared to the moderately sensitive brakes and throttle of the front-drive A3 2.0T.” It seems that for this A3, then, entry-level doesn’t mean boring to drive, especially compared to its more expensive larger siblings.


For 2019 the Mazda3 is all new, with our First Drive revealing, “The night-and-day difference between the old car and the new is immediately apparent after just a few miles of driving.” It’s a huge step forward in terms of style and substance, and, like previous generations, it “remains remarkably engaging to drive. The Mazda3’s steering is direct and progressive, with a hint of lightness to it that brings the Miata to mind.” The 2.5-liter I-4 makes an even 186 hp and 186 lb-ft of torque, delivered in a free-revving, “peppy” way. As before, the Mazda3 can be had in sedan or hatchback form, but only the latter is available with a six-speed manual.

Volvo XC40

We could argue that fun begins as you walk toward a car, before you ever get inside. In that sense, the Volvo XC40 is entertaining just sitting still. It’s a great-looking crossover, with a creased, angled body and an optional contrast-tone roof. Once you’re driving, the XC40 still provides fun. It was one of our 2019 SUV of the Year finalists, and we praised its suspension for “deliver[ing] a spirited ride and steering without being darty.” In basic spec, the 2.0-liter turbocharged I-4 makes 187 hp and 221 lb-ft. That’s not a lot, but it’s enough to back up the fun styling.

Mercedes-Benz A 220

The least expensive Mercedes-Benz is anything but cheap. New to North America for 2019, the A-Class looks like a shrunken version of the brand’s more expensive models, but it still pushes the envelope for technology and features. A 188-hp 2.0-liter turbocharged I-4 powers the entry-level A 220, and our First Drive found it “has plenty of pep for everyday driving,” as well as a nice sound. In terms of fun, the all-wheel-drive version we sampled “impressed us with surprisingly sporty handling for a non-performance car. On winding back roads, the car had plenty of grip and a suspension that kept body roll well under control.” If that isn’t enough for you, don’t worry—AMG variants are coming soon, though you can expect output to be north of 200 hp.

Mini Hardtop/Convertible S

We’re devoting this section to the 189-hp, 207-lb-ft Hartop and Convertible S models, but really, any of Mini’s vehicles (apart from the John Cooper Works variants) are eligible for this list. The 2.0-liter turbocharged I-4 in the S can be had in every Mini body style, but it’s not really necessary—the standard 1.5-liter turbocharged I-3 (yes, inline-three) with 134 hp and 162 lb-ft still lets the cars’ fun, tossable handling shine. In our review of the current-gen Convertible, we said that “whichever you choose, the Mini has not lost its signature go-kart handling. Cornering is gleeful and the turning radius is ridiculously small.” Minis aren’t as mini as they once were, but they stay true to their fun-to-drive ethos no matter which engine is under the hood.

Subaru BRZ


Subaru’s BRZ is built specifically for fun, but it just barely makes it onto this list. Its 2.0-liter flat-four makes 200 hp and 151 lb-ft, the very maximum to qualify—but only with an automatic transmission. Opting for the six-speed manual bumps power up to 205. So is the automatic BRZ still any good? “Toss a few corners the BRZ auto’s way, and you’ll find that the car still handles beautifully,” we said in our First Test. “Feel like drifting? Just turn off traction control and it’s ready. Want more violent shifts? Put the transmission in Sport mode.” It’s still a fun car even without a third pedal, and although we’ll always prefer the manual, the automatic BRZ is good enough for this list.

Chevrolet Bolt

We won’t pretend that the Chevrolet Bolt is a sports car or even a driver’s car. But it is electric, and with that comes the addicting response of instant torque whenever you put your foot down. What’s more, one-pedal driving with regenerative braking presents its own fun appeal—it makes a driver rethink everything they know. In an update on our long-term Bolt, our tester said of one-pedal driving, “I also enjoy the challenge of it. Getting my timing just right so I don’t have to modulate the regen but let it slow me down exactly as much as needed is rewarding in its own little way. I also like to use it when I’m driving quickly. Because I’d be modulating the brake pedal the same way I am the regenerative braking, I can use it to slow precisely as much as needed for a corner while also extending my range.” Such a new, unique involvement adds a degree of fun no gas-powered car can provide.

The post The 13 Most Fun-to-Drive 2019 Cars With 200 HP or Less appeared first on MotorTrend.

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Property Week News Feed: Ex-Addison Lee HQ snapped up for student accommodation scheme

Fri, 06/07/2019 - 05:00
Taxi company Addison Lee’s former headquarters in Euston has been acquired by MBU Capital, which has plans to develop a mixed-use scheme including student accommodation.
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Property Week News Feed: Panattoni lands AkzoNobel site ahead of housebuilders

Thu, 06/06/2019 - 23:00
Deal for 30-acre former ICI site in Slough highlights shift in land values for industrial and residential
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Property Week News Feed: Deutsche Bank widens property lending remit

Thu, 06/06/2019 - 23:00
Bank starts lending at LTV ratios of 60% and below on prime, well-let properties
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Property Week News Feed: Mayfair Capital agrees £110m deal to buy Bonhill Building from L&G

Thu, 06/06/2019 - 23:00
Mayfair Capital has agreed a deal to buy Shoreditch office block the Bonhill Building from Legal & General for around £110m.
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Property Week News Feed: LSH’s 574 aims to beat record lot price at next online auction

Thu, 06/06/2019 - 23:00
Auctioneer hopes Leeds student block will surpass £20.4m online and offline record for sale of a single lot
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Property Week News Feed: Brexit set to put brakes on growth in three of top five industries

Thu, 06/06/2019 - 23:00
Growth will slow in at least three of the UK’s top five industries this year as a result of Brexit, a report by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr) forecasts.
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The Car Connection News Feed: 2019 Chevrolet Silverado, GMC Sierra score four-star NHTSA crash-test rating

Thu, 06/06/2019 - 17:00
The redesigned 2019 Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra earned four-star overall ratings in the NHTSA's barrage of crash tests and measurements, a downgrade from the five-star rating the feds bestowed upon last year's version of the trucks. The government agency measures safety on a five-star rating scale, and it is relatively unusual for a new...
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The Car Connection News Feed: Hertz tests car subscription program from $999 monthly

Thu, 06/06/2019 - 14:35
One of the world's largest car-rental companies is taking advantage of its massive car inventory by dipping its toes into car subscriptions. Hertz announced Tuesday it will roll out its Hertz My Car program in two markets to start. The structure is similar to many pilot car subscription services automakers and other rental car firms have dabbled...
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The Car Connection News Feed: 20210 Ford Fusion, FCA-Renault merger stalls, hydrogen shortage: What's New @ The Car Connection

Thu, 06/06/2019 - 14:30
2020 Ford Fusion lineup trimmed for sedan's last year The 2020 Ford Fusion lineup won't include the powerful Fusion Sport. Volvo says it will tow broken-down cars for life Volvo owners stuck on the side of the road with a broken-down car will never need to worry about arranging a tow truck. GM, Michelin to test airless tire prototype General...
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Property Week News Feed: Knotel signs in Soho

Thu, 06/06/2019 - 09:00
Flexible office provider Knotel is to open two new offices in Soho, London, adding 23,042 sq ft to its footprint in the capital.
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Property Week News Feed: PPHE Hotel Group joins FTSE 250

Thu, 06/06/2019 - 08:06
PPHE Hotel Group has joined the FTSE 250 and FTSE All Share Indices.
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Property Week News Feed: PMM makes first Irish loan

Thu, 06/06/2019 - 08:03
PMM Real Estate Finance has completed its first transaction in the Irish market, providing a facility of up to €30m to Westpark Shannon to refinance the Westpark Business Campus.
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Property Week News Feed: First Property NAV nudges up but profit down

Thu, 06/06/2019 - 07:59
First Property Group posted a mixed set of results in its prelims for the year to 31 March.
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