Test Driving The Mahindra KUV100 In SA

On a trip to India In May, I drove the diesel model. After 40 km on Mumbai’s highway, it was clear to me that the high-riding hatchback could very well raise some eyebrows in the SA passenger-car market.

My first experience of the Mahindra KUV100 back in South Africa was a ‘Sunset Orange’ diesel model. It was powered by a 1.2-litre turbodiesel engine capable of a modest 57kW/190Nm. They claim the fuel consumption is 4.4l/100km but you won’t be able to accurately tell as it doesn’t have a consumption gauge.

Specifications:

The K6+ derivatives and above offer a six-speaker sound system with Bluetooth connectivity to the Mahindra Blue Sense app. A multi-function steering wheel and a refrigerated glove compartment are also included.

Despite its low horsepower, the three-cylinder delivered as it did in Mumbai and felt lively with loads of torque between all five gears.

The gearbox really deserves all the accolades. The shifting is solid and precise but sadly the clutch pedal is too low down on the floor. It took me a while to get used to and this is perhaps something Mahindra should reconsider.

On that note, the pedal placement of the brake and clutch are too close together. If you have small feet, you might be OK or just let your toddler drive you around.

Taking to a gravel road showed an acceptable ride but the height of the 1155kg KUV100 meant the ride was rather bumpy, especially at speed. Build quality could also be improved upon as I experienced wind noise while driving on the highway.

I wouldn’t go for the petrol model even though it also has the 1.2-litre three-cylinder engine (61kW/115Nm). It feels lethargic and nothing compared to the diesel. In first, second and third gear it really struggled like the Bulls did in Super Rugby this year.

Is the KUV worth buying?:

Mahindra claims the KUV100 competes with the Toyota Etios Cross, Renault Sandero Stepway, Suzuki Swift, Hyundai Grand i10, Chery J2, Tata Bolt and the Ford Figo. It’s a tough ask as most of these cars have great commercial value, brand loyalty, better-perceived build quality and an established dealer network.

There is one area the Mahindra KUV100 outshines the rest and that is on price. It will set you back a little under R150 000 for the entry level petrol model which comes standard with aircon, electric windows, ABS and driver/passenger airbags.

I may have been somewhat reluctant of the KUV100 but at the end of the launch I had really warmed up to the diesel model. The price, equipment level and overall driving experience left a good impression. Let’s hope the automaker ages like a fine wine and not like vinegar.

In conclusion, the diesel engine and gearbox are both more than adequate but the biggest concerns are pedal placement, clutch and wind noise. It remains to be seen whether or not South Africans will be interested in the KUV100 but it’s certainly worth a mention. Even if the Mahindra KUV100 isn’t quite your cup of tea, there is more Mahindra on the way.

*Three-year or 100 000 km warranty on all models and a three-year or 50 000 km service plan on the K6+ and K8 derivatives (optional for K4+).



Source by Gemma Murray

5 Tips to Start Trading CFD’s

CFD trading can be a very competitive and high risk market, especially for new traders. With a few tricks up the sleeve, and by becoming better informed, one can close that risky gap just a bit more. Most of these tips can be easily understood and utilized prior to the first trade. This makes them ideal to anyone just starting, and they also apply to other aspects of trading too.

First and foremost is understanding how CFD works. If at all confused, try to find the answers before trading, or ask for help from a qualified CFD broker. Know the job of the seller, the buyer, and how to properly utilize all tools involved. Learn how to track, interpret, and foresee market trends. What sets a good trader apart from a great one is learning how the markets works from every possible angle. However, this can’t be learned overnight nor can it all be learned by books or websites. No, most of it will come with experience through active trading.

Possibly most important is to create a master game plan before you start. CFD should be looked upon as a game of intense strategy, though not so intense that one can never win. Write it down, and no matter what arises, stick to your plan. Plan for any and all possible scenarios so there will never be any surprises. No one wants to have to make a decision while under fire, and some trading can be intense like that. If not properly prepared, one can make huge mistakes that cost them a lot of money.

Using a stop loss can and often times does save money from being lost. It is considered to be the most under utilized tool available to traders, though it is one of the most essential for long term success. However, this does not mean that one would never lose money by using it. Though, it can turn what would have been a substantial loss into a very minor one. When properly used, it will keep your money safer during power or internet outages, or if one had to step away for a moment. Plan on having it set prior to starting, and set it a comfortable level that will vary between each person. Plan to place both a buy and sell stop loss if partaking in both.

Trading funds should never, ever be money that is used for survival. If the account funding will take food off of a table, clothes off a back, or allow the roof to cave in, don’t use it for funding a trading account. It is way too risky and one even minor mistake could lose it all. Instead save some money from each paycheck until you have enough to open a trading account. Using partial savings is of course another valid option, though one might want to put it back once money is made. While saving up to fund the account it is best to take this time to learn the ins, and outs of CFD. Use this time to write up a game plan, strategy, or even about how the earned money will be spent.

Finally, don’t look to make trading a full time job right away. Instead look to it as a hobby. Sure it can be a costly hobby compared to some, but doing it out of enjoyment will reduce the stress in losses. And over time, it is possible to make it a great source of income. Remember, it’s more of a game of strategy that everyone is playing together. When losses occur, it is alright to get upset, but don’t let it get in the way of continuing to trade, and to learn. While it can make quite a bit of money, depending of course on the investment, it should not remain the only source of income for the beginner. Instead use it to fund a vacation, or even to fund an early retirement.



Source by Nicolas Emerson

Video Game Streaming – The New Frontier!

Video gaming has always been a competitive sport. Arcade boxes earlier had their pixelated high score charts, and every kid wanted to have the one with the top scores in his neighborhood. With the internet explosion and the release of iconic first person shooter games like Doom and Counter Strike, players from all over the world began to come together. In 1997, one of the first e-sports organizations, Cyberathelete Professional League was established. Since then the gaming world has leaped forward to online gaming and streaming. Let us take a closer look at the phenomenon.

The Rise of Online Gaming and Streaming

In the past four decades, online gaming has become one of the world's largest entertainment industries. According to reports from PricewaterhouseCoopers, the global online gaming industry in 2010 was worth around $ 56 billion! This is bigger than both the magazine or the music industry and about two-thirds the film industry's size. According to a 2011 report by Entertainment Software Association, the average age of a gamer in the United States is 37 and 42 percent of these gamers are female.

One of the biggest trends today, in live streaming is not music (as you might have previously assumed), but competitive gaming. e-sports today, joins thousands of viewers. A number of sites today, catering specifically to gamers and their fans stream e-sport events. Several e-sport websites have exploded all over the internet as live webcasts taking competitive video gaming to a completely new level, transforming it into a sport that is viewed by millions from one which was limited to just insiders.

Video Game Streaming: The Big Players

Among the big players in video game streaming today are Own3D.tv and TwitchTV. Own3D.tv began online video game streaming in 2010, and at present, the website gets over four million unique viewers a month for video game live streams. In March 2011, Electronic Sports League (ESL), the world's largest gaming league, broadcasted the Intel Extreme Masters event, which is among the most popular gaming tournaments of the year, through Own3D. With $ 400,000 as prize money, the gaming tournament drew 75,000 simultaneous live viewers on single event days, while the overall audience reached several million gamers. June 2011 saw over 200,000 concurrent viewers watching a Dreamhack contest (which is based around League of Legends, another popular game) on Own3D, with about 250 GBps of traffic through the event.

And live video streaming vendor Justin.tv watched e-sports video streaming at such a rapid rate that they dedicated an entire website to it. In June 2011, they launched TwitchTV after video game streaming reached around 3.2million monthly unique views on its main website. TwitchTV now engages over 12 million unique viewers each month. Also it has had a steady month over month growth rate of 11 percent since it was launched. Beside that, TwitchTV has over 1,000 premium partners. It has also received over 80,000 downloads of its iPhone mobile app in less than a month of the app's launch. Between October 10th and October 16th the website received massive traffic as can be seen from the following figures:

Total Hours Watched: 6,737,250

Weekly Unique Viewers: 4,214,057

Total Hours Watched per Unique Viewer: 1.6

Weekly Unique Chatters: 309,220

Peak Concurrent Viewers on a Single Stream: 125,862

Peak Concurrent Viewers on all Gaming Content: 165,250

Video Game Streaming: Popular Genres

Here are some of the most popular genres in live online video game streaming:

Adventure (Assassin's Creed II, Lego, Lost Planet)
Strategy (StarCraft II, Total War, Worms)
Sport Games (FIFA, NBA 2K10, MLB 2K10)
Shooter (Modern Warfare 3, Bad Company 2, Left 4 Dead 2)
Role-Playing (Mass Effect 2, Dragon Age)
Racing (Need for Speed: The Run Playthrough Part 1 !, GP2 Asia Series 2011)
Simulation (The Sims)
Massively multiplayer online role-playing game – MMORPG (World of Warcraft, Hydra 9)

Streaming Games Online: The Legal Side

By now you might know or at least hear about the new bill related to anti-streaming video – S.978. At present, it is not illegal to stream, for instance a walk-through of Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3 online as it is considered to be a public performance. However, a bill like this would make such videos illegal. This bill might seem like a great thing at first glance as it helps curb piracy, but as parts of the bill are quite vague, it could lead to a few issues for members of the media / gaming enthusiast communities.

However, it is also possible that game developers and publishers may decide not to broadcast streaming gamers, thereby leaving things quite the same way as they are now. Given the huge number of such videos available on the web, it would be rather optimistic to actually think that game developers and publishers will have the time and money to pursue users every time they break this would-be law. Beside online video game streaming has generated a win-win scenario for all parties involved.

Game Streaming: A Win-Win Situation for Everyone

Websites like Own3D.tv and TwitchTV witness most of their traffic around gaming events. However, these websites feature live video feeds of gamers playing popular video games any time, as well. Some of these gamers are just amateurs who like to show their gaming skills to other gamers while some actually belong to professional gaming teams, and are preparing for the next tournament.

Beside, gamers today are increasingly monetizing matches as live video game streaming offers them another way of earning money and making a living. Live video game streaming websites like Own3D.tv and TwitchTV have revenue sharing deals with professional gaming partners. The most common types of monetization include ads, subscriptions and pay per views.

TwitchTV for instance, has a revenue sharing plan where they sell ads on the gamer's stream and the profits earned are split between them. TwitchTV also includes automatic transcoding, where viewers can flip between a variety of quality settings, based on their connection. Besides that partners also get early access to latest technology from Twitch as well as the ability to test out new features.

The companies are also on the winning side. Zvetan Dragulev, Own3D.tv CEO explained that they get 90 percent of their video views from pro-gaming teams and events that pull in higher CPM rates as compared to traditional user generated live video streams. Besides that, advertisers also love the fact that they are catering to a well defined audience. So Everyone's happy – well, no one's happier than the gamers would be my guess!



Source by Trevor G Somerville

Car Title Loans in Los Angeles

There are usually difficult days when you would be down financially and need quick cash to bail yourself out. In many cases, having poor credit makes the condition worse as you cannot turn to your banks for assistance. In such hopeless circumstances, one of the best options you explore is getting auto title loans.

How do Car Title Loans in Los Angeles work?

Foremost, you should understand that car title loans in Los Angeles offer you an opportunity to obtain financial assistance without the need for you to give out any of your properties. Notably, when you are getting a loan from most financial institutions, you are often required to use any of your valuable properties as collateral which will be surrendered to the institution. However, car title loans in Los Angeles are different because you will only have to use your vehicle as collateral without having to surrender it.

Before the lender will accept to give you the loan, there are a few steps to be taken to protect the interest of both the lender and the borrower. The lender will first confirm whether you are the owner of the car or not and also find out if you have made full payment for the car. If you are not the owner of the car or you are yet to complete the car payment, you will be denied a loan.

Once you have been confirmed as the legitimate owner of the car, your car will be valued to determine the amount of money that can be loaned to you. Furthermore, your ability to pay the loan back in installment monthly will be also ascertained. You will also be required to submit proof of insurance and a photo ID during application for the loan.

Afterward, the lender will be added as the lien holder on the car title and this will remain so until the loan has been paid off completely. The loan can be thousands of dollars that can be repaid over a period of 12 to 36 months. Once you have paid off the loan, a new car title will be issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) without the lender’s name.

Benefits of Car Title Loans

The most prominent benefit of obtaining pink slip loans in Los Angeles is that the lender will not take your car away from you. The vehicle will still be in your possession and can be used whenever you want.

Also, obtaining auto equity loans in Los Angeles does not involve rigorous or time-taking processes. Therefore, your car title loans can be approved in just a few days after application.

What to do when applying for a car title loan

When applying for an auto title loan in Los Angeles, you should take your time to understand the terms of the loan. Credible lenders should be able to provide you written terms for proper review. Some of the things you need to pay attention to when reviewing the terms include finance charge, interest rate, lien fees, late fees, length of the loan, loan origination fees, and processing fees.

One of the best pink slip loan providers in Los Angeles is Car Title Loans California.

In a nutshell, whenever you are in need of car title loans in Los Angeles, you must understand that dubious lenders may want to prey on your circumstances; therefore, be careful.



Source by Daniel Joelson