2018 Mercedes-Benz X-Class puts some fancy trim on your cowboy boots 2020 Volvo XC60 T8 Polestar Engineered first drive: Almost Super Trouper Enlarge ImageGood night, sweet prince, we hardly knew ye. Mercedes-Benz If you live in the US and don’t pay particularly close attention to car and truck models that aren’t sold here, you could easily be forgiven for not knowing that Mercedes-Benz makes a pickup truck. It’s called the X-Class, and it’s actually pretty cool.Unfortunately, it may not be long for this world if a report published Tuesday by Automotive News Europe is to be believed. The reason for the possible demise of the X-Class is the current worldwide sales slump for new vehicles. The X-Class, being kind of a niche product — and a badge-engineered one at that — is an easy target for cost savings. Yep, we said badge-engineered. The X-Class is based on a Nissan pickup (that we also don’t get in the US) called the Navara. Obviously, Mercedes being what it is, it changes a ton of stuff, so it’s not quite as bad as say, Volkswagen rebadging a Grand Caravan as the Routan.In any case, the X-Class (which has been around since 2017) hasn’t exactly been flying off of dealer lots. Automotive News Europe pegs the global sales for the model at just 16,700 units. By comparison, Mercedes shifted around 15,000 S-Class models in 2018 in the US alone.When you consider that the S-Class costs more than twice as much as an X-Class (based on German market prices) and sedan sales are in the proverbial terlet here, the model’s discontinuation starts to make some real sense.Now, we’ll shed no tears for the X-Class if and when it goes away, but we do like the idea of a Mercedes pickup. We just need to convince the folks back in Stuttgart to do some really wild stuff like make a Jeep Gladiatoresque version of the G-wagen and sell it in America. 0 Share your voice 48 Photos Mercedes-Benz Nissan 2019 Nissan Pathfinder Rock Creek Edition first drive: Its roots are showing Tags 2020 Kia Soul review: Well-rounded box 8:42 Now playing: Watch this: Trucks Car Industry Post a comment 2019 Mercedes-AMG GT53 4-door: A fancy-pants muscle car Mercedes-Benz More From Roadshow
We saw India’s two eminent personalities – Scientist Dr. CNR Rao and cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar – getting honoured with the nation’s highest civilian award, Bharat Ratna, on Tuesday. And just a few hours later, on the same day in the USA, another Indian – Satya Nadella – was anointed as the new CEO of software technology giant Microsoft, making him the most influential Indian tech-executive in the world.Microsoft board of directors, after five months of scrutiny, finally chose company veteran Satya (aka Satyanarayana) Nadella, 46, as the replacement for the retiring CEO Steve Ballmer.”During this time of transformation, there is no better person to lead Microsoft than Satya Nadella,” said Bill Gates, co-founder and former chairman of board of directors, Microsoft.”Satya is a proven leader with hard-core engineering skills, business vision and the ability to bring people together. His vision for how technology will be used and experienced around the world is exactly what Microsoft needs as the company enters its next chapter of expanded product innovation and growth,” Gates added.Ballmer has officially relinquished the CEO post (though he will continue to be part of the board of directors) and Gates has passed the chairman of board of directors baton to John Thompson. The company founder has been assigned to the new position of technology advisor.Meanwhile, newly crowned Microsoft CEO Nadella said: “Microsoft is one of those rare companies to have truly revolutionized the world through technology, and I couldn’t be more honored to have been chosen to lead the company.”The opportunity ahead for Microsoft is vast, but to seize it, we must focus clearly, move faster and continue to transform. A big part of my job is to accelerate our ability to bring innovative products to our customers more quickly.”[Also Read: 10 Facts You Should Know About Microsoft’s New CEO, Satya Nadella]New Microsoft CEO’s Challenges Ahead:New CEO Nadella’s immediate challenge will be to form a core team to envision future technology to move forward the Microsoft business. It also means that he will be tested to show his co-ordination skills with the board members, including his internal competitors (Skype head Tony Bates and company COO Kevin Turner), who both lost the CEO race to him.Nadella will also have the responsibility of pivoting the company’s transformation phase as Microsoft completes the acquisition of Nokia later in March. Another sector which is expected to get his attention would be the Windows Phone OS ecosystem, which is way behind market leaders, such as Apple and Google (they account more than 90-percent smart devices globally). If the company wants to consolidate its foothold in the ever-growing smartphone business, Nadella is expected to infuse the same driving force, using Nokia’s branded Lumia series, in emerging markets like Africa, South East Asia (including India) as the developed markets begin to saturate in coming years.Apart from smartphones, Nadella has his task cut out to turn the loss-making Surface tablet series to profits, as well as improve the marketing of company’s flagship Xbox gaming console, which is in competition with the Sony PlayStation series.With the advent of low-cost smart devices (like smartphones and tablet PCs), we have already witnessed a drop in desktop PC sales globally, and further adding to the woes is the disappointing response to the new Windows 8 PC OS. Nadella will be expected to infuse some driving force to revive the lost sheen of Windows OS, like he spearhead Microsoft’s ‘Cloud and Enterprise’ in 2011; the division has grown from $16.6 billion to $20.3 billion (as of June 2013).
<< Previous PostNext Post >> ONBOARD OCEANIA MARINA — Reporting from the lovely environs of Oceania Marina is pure pleasure. Whether your clients are seasoned cruisers or first-timers to the cruising world, and whether they gravitate to super luxury or easy comfort, you can confidently assure them that Oceania presents a lifestyle at sea that is so inviting, so gracious at every level, that being a passenger aboard an Oceania vessel feels much like being a valued member of a private, upscale country club where – one might say – membership reaps rewards.Oceania cruising is a lifestyle. The cruise line has cleverly branded the lifestyle OLife and, along with it, made the Oceania culinary experience an integral and signature hallmark of that brand.Simply put, here’s what this means for your clients: No matter their level of accommodation – from oceanview to Owner’s Suite – they can expect gourmet fare throughout all Oceania ships, plus the privilege of dining in any specialty restaurant without paying a premium dining fee, though reservations are required.More news: Onex paying big to get WestJet and that will send airfares soaring, says CWTThree days into my ‘Tropical Tempos’ itinerary aboard the Marina, as an unabashed lover of fine food I am astonished by the superb quality and presentation of meals, and the fact that almost all dishes are prepared à la minute, and occasionally, tableside. (More about the Italian, French and pan-Asian restaurants in an upcoming article in Travelweek.)Having already honed a diverse roster of tours in international ports of call, and having already established the first hands-on cooking school at sea, Oceania has enhanced the touring possibilities by researching and creating culinary discovery experiences that allow passengers to have authentic, intimate experiences with locals of the destination.For example, when the Marina calls at Roatan this morning, I’ll be joining a farm-to-table tour with a local farmer, learning how hydroponic technology has increased produce for the area, helping to gather lettuces and greens, and participating in a cooking program at a local restaurant.So far this Marina cruise has been an all-around delectable experience. I look forward to sharing tasty Oceania details, as well as tidbits of the OLife experience, in my upcoming article for Travelweek. Toby Saltzman Posted by Wednesday, February 22, 2017 Share Tags: Oceania Cruises Oceania Cruises’ OLife makes for an all-around delectable experience at sea
Tags: Crystal Cruises Posted by Crystal Debussy is christened in official ceremony Tuesday, May 29, 2018 Share << Previous PostNext Post >> AMSTERDAM – Crystal River Cruises officially welcomed its newest ship during a christening ceremony in Amsterdam earlier this week.The 106-passenger Crystal Debussy was introduced with plenty of fanfare during its three-day stay in Amsterdam while on the 10-day ‘Splendors of the Rhine’ voyage, allowing guests onboard to participate in the festivities, including a live performance by Godmother Rachel York of Broadway fame.Rachel York (Godmother)Walter Littlejohn, Crystal River Cruises’ vice president and managing director, presided over the ceremony as emcee, saying, “It is fitting that our crew and guests, as well as representatives from our parent company and the city and port of Amsterdam are all part of this milestone for Crystal Debussy and the Crystal River fleet. They each embody elements of the Crystal family and our vision to create the most memorable luxury travel experiences in the world.”Tom Wolber (President & CEO, Crystal Cruises), Walter Littlejohn (Vice President and Managing Director, Crystal River Cruises, Captain Ferenc (Captain, Crystal Debussy) and Rachel York (Godmother)Throughout 2018 and 2019, Crystal Debussy will sail routes of seven and 10 days between Amsterdam and Basel along the Rhine and Moselle rivers, visiting Switzerland, Germany, Netherlands and Belgium. Onboard, guests will find Crystal’s acclaimed butler service in every room category, king-sized beds, Panoramic Balcony-Windows, walk-in closets, dual vanity bathrooms in most categories, farm-to-table cuisine in multiple, open-seating eateries, namesake Bistro cafes and the Palm Court for entertainment, presentations and sweeping views. Travelweek Group