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FTFinancial Times

Daimler’s China IPO pitch misses the marque – When shares in Daimler’s China joint venture partner begin trading in Hong Kong later this week, the listing’s sponsors are hoping that investors will be reminded of another stock that has soared by virtue of its association with German manufacturing excellence. For Beijing-based BAIC Motor, China’s fifth-largest domestic carmaker, comparisons with Brilliance China Automotive are flattering. Since Brilliance Auto was selected as BMW’s China partner in March 2003, its Hong Kong shares have risen more than 800 per cent.

Inflation falls to 12-year low as food and oil prices decline – Falling oil and food prices have driven inflation to its lowest level in more than a decade, delivering a boost to the spending power of households that are still recovering from a period of stagnant wages. Consumer prices rose by just 1 per cent in the year to November, the Office for National Statistics said yesterday. It is the lowest consumer price index – it does not include mortgages and rents – since 2002 and down from 1.3 per cent in October.

Visteon to shed air-con stake as it gears up for connected cars – US auto parts maker Visteon has agreed to sell its stake in a South Korean joint venture for $3.6bn as it seeks to focus on in-car electronics and connected vehicle technology. The company is proposing to offload its 70 per cent interest in Halla Visteon Climate Control, a supplier of car air conditioners and heaters, to two Korean companies – Hahn & Co, a private equity firm, and tyremaker Hankook.

The Times

Cars park themselves – BMW has found a solution to the stress of parking with its “remote4 valet parking assistant” due to be unveiled next month. The driver gets out of the vehicle at the car park entrance and speaks into a smart watch to activate the app. Four laser scanners sweep the area for a free spot, then send the location to a separate system that provides power, steering and braking so the car can park itself.

Car parts maker sells – Johnson Matthey, one of the world’s largest makers of catalytic converters for cars, is to sell its gold and silver refining business to Asahi Holding, of Japan, for £118 million in cash. The London-listed company said that the division had sales of £44million last year and employed about 340 people at its plants in the United States and Canada.

Car fumes ‘double risk of autism in unborn babies’ – Women exposed to diesel fumes in late pregnancy could double thier risk of having a child with autism, warn researchers. They found the risk rises sharply in areas with high levels of traffic pollution, with women most vulnerable during the last three months of pregnancy.

The Daily Telegraph

Rolls wins £4bn contract with low-cost carrier – Rolls-Royce has won a $6.2bn (£4bn) contract to provide engines and support to Malaysia-based budget carrier Air Asia X. Rolls said 10 Airbus A330ceo jets will be powered by its Trent 700 engine, and 55 Airbus A330neo aircraft will have the Trent 7000 engine. It is the largest single order for the Trent 7000 since it was launched earlier this year.

Car smoking ban to save children – Smoking in cars with children is to be banned in England from next October under Government plans. The Department of Health (DoH) said regulations before Parliament to make private vehicles carrying uner-18s smoke-free were to “protect young people form the serious health harms of smoked tobacco”.

The Metro

Blind Spot? Not with see-through Jaguar – Danger can come straight out of left field when you drive a car. Now blind spots may be a thing of the past thanks to British engineers. Jaguar Land Rover has fitted cameras to the outside frame of a concept car which provide a live feed on to screens on the other side. The feed starts the moment the driver indicat4s, moves his head over his shoulder or approaches a junction. It is hoped the technology could reduce accidents.

Posted by Sue Robinson on 19/12/2014