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Software emissions fix for three million Mercedes diesels
Three million Mercedes-Benz owners in Europe will be offered a software fix for their diesel cars. Daimler, which owns the luxury car maker, has been under intense pressure from police and prosecutors. Authorities are investigating the possible manipulation of diesel exhaust emissions in passenger cars. A Daimler spokesman said the software fix, which will cost about 220m euros (£195m), was not linked to the police investigation.
Credit and debit card surcharges to be banned
Consumers are no longer to be charged extra for paying by debit or credit card, the government has said. From January next year, businesses will not be allowed to add any surcharges for card payments. The worst offenders currently are airlines and food delivery apps, and small businesses which typically add a fee for cards. In 2010 alone consumers spent £473m on such charges, according to estimates by the Treasury.
Harley-Davidson forecasts more falling sales
Shares in Harley-Davidson are down about 8% in New York after the motorcycle maker slashed its sales forecast for this year. The Milwaukee-based firm now expects to sell between 241,000 and 246,000 bikes this year, down from 262,221 last year. Demand has been dropping for years. A decade ago it was selling almost 350,000 annually. Harley is also facing competition from cheaper bikes made by rival US firm Polaris and Japan’s Honda.
Audi advert criticised in China for being sexist
Audi has been criticised for an advert in China, which thousands of internet users have branded sexist. The ad compares buying a car to finding a wife, saying “an important decision must be made carefully”. It shows a woman having her nose, ears and teeth inspected by her mother-in-law on her wedding day. An Audi spokesman told the South China Morning Post marketing in China was the responsibility of its local joint venture partner. Some are calling for a boycott of the German carmaker – which is recognised as one of the big three in China, along with Mercedes Benz and BMW.
‘UK inequality reduced since 2008’
The gap between the richest and poorest households in the UK has narrowed since the recession of 2007-08, according to the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS). In its latest report on living standards, the IFS said rising employment and sharp falls in income in the middle and top earning households was behind the decline in inequality. There had been a “dramatic” fall in inequality in London, the IFS said. However, the capital is still the most unequal region in the UK.
Falling petrol prices help to bring down inflation
Falling petrol prices came to the rescue of cash-strapped households last month as inflation dropped to 2.6 per cent, taking pressure off squeezed personal finances. The consumer prices index (CPI) showed a surprise decline from 2.9 per cent in May, against forecasts for no change. The slowdown was caused largely by a 1.1 per cent fall in fuel prices between May and June, the fourth consecutive monthly decrease.
Electric cars may stall without a battery revolution
All around the world, countries are sounding the death knell for the internal combustion engine. Earlier this month, France announced that it wanted to end the sale of petrol and diesel cars by 2040, joining India (2030) and Norway (2025) in envisioning an all-electric future. Car-makers are racing to meet demand, with Volvo promising that from 2019, all of its new models will feature an electric motor. Modern electric motors are compact, extremely efficient and emissions-free at the point of use but each one requires a battery to store and deliver power, and that is where electric vehicles (EVs) stumble.
Acid attacks: delivery drivers stage protest outside parliament
Delivery drivers led by Jabed Hussain, the victim of an acid attack last week, have held a noisy protest outside parliament demanding protection from violence. Hundreds of motorcycle and moped riders, who say they fear for their safety while working, brought traffic around Parliament Square to a standstill with their vehicles on Tuesday. They say the attack on Hussain, who had his scooter stolen in one of five alleged acid-throwing incidents in east London on Thursday night, reflects an environment in which they and their vehicles are constantly targeted.
Motorists warned of ‘stressful’ start to the holidays as summer getaway coincides with roadworks
The nine million motorists expected to take to the roads this weekend have been warned they will need a “healthy dose of patience” as the big summer getaway coincides with a raft of roadworks. More than 250 sets of roadworks are in place on major routes up and down the country and are likely to mark a “stressful” start to the holidays, causing tailbacks of at least half an hour. Despite the predicted problems, Highways England will not be suspending the works as it is not a bank holiday. It said much of the work will take place overnight to minimise disruption but lanes will still be closed and speed restrictions will remain in place.
The UK’s 10 deadliest roads: Lethal highways are a ‘toxic mix’ of sharp bends, poor lighting and 60mph limits
SCARED drivers are battling a “toxic mix” of sharp bends, poor lighting and high speeds on the UK’s deadliest roads. And newly-qualified drivers are putting their lives at risk by not taking their foot off the gas. New data reveals average speeds on ten of the nation’s most dangerous roads are up to 20mph below the speed limits as experienced drivers slash their speeds to stay safe.