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The Latest News And Reviews
Throughout The Car Industry

Categories: Car News

Buick Hires Supermodel Marisa Miller For Ad Campaign (Video)

On: Sat, May 12, 2012 at 11:02AM | By: Chris Weiss

Buick Hires Supermodel Marisa Miller For Ad Campaign test 2

It looks like Buick is determined to rectify its ambiguous branding in one strong move. It has hired on supermodel Marisa Miller to star in a new ad campaign around its Enclave. Though Kate Upton may be getting all the buzz these days, Miller is still the type of blonde bombshell that delivers instant electricity to anything she appears in.

One of the problems that Buick faces in today's market is that it's a wishy-washy brand without a firm definition. It's a sort of middle-road, semi-luxury brand between Chevy and GM. But even that definition isn't really a definition at all. And in reality, Buick is known more as a brand for the older generation, especially since Oldsmobile (which brought the “old” right in the brand name) was discontinued.

Ferrari Takes Heat Over Smoking Donuts On Great Wall Of China

On: Fri, May 11, 2012 at 4:12PM | By: Chris Weiss

Ferrari Takes Heat Over Smoking Donuts On Great Wall Of China test 2

In what must be one of the biggest publicity and advertising misfires in the modern world, Ferrari - more specifically one of its dealerships - is in some hot water with the Chinese government. The problem? Someone from a Nanjing-based Ferrari dealership decided it prudent to do tire-smoking donuts atop the Great Wall of China.

The incident occurred when the dealership rented out a piece of the Great Wall of China in doing publicity for the new special edition 458 Italia. Apparently just getting some footage of the 458 Italia on and around the Great Wall wasn't enough for at least one member of this braintrust, because he got behind the wheel and proceeded to do donuts, burning tire marks into one of the greatest architectural achievements in the history of man. Good job, bro.

Toyota Supra Successor To Get 400-HP Hybrid Powertrain

On: Fri, May 11, 2012 at 1:22PM | By: Chris Weiss

Toyota Supra Successor To Get 400-HP Hybrid Powertrain test 2

The rumored Toyota Supra successor may be taking a move upmarket. Instead of battling mid-level sports cars like the Nissan 370Z, it may be battling flagships like the Honda NSX. A new report is the second we've read that gifts the Supra revival a 400-hp hybrid powertrain that could help it to be Toyota's halo.

We first read about a possible 400-hp hybrid drive unit late last year in Motor Trend. The latest issue of the magazine gives a few more details on the model, which isn't expected to bring back the Supra name.

TechShop Fuels Ford IP Folio

On: Fri, May 11, 2012 at 11:42AM | By: Chris Salamone

TechShop Detroit test 2

Sometimes US automakers get it right. TechShop Detroit, a recent addition to Ford’s Dearborn product development campus, is the perfect example. Although originally from California, TechShop is a DIY workshop business which offers a wide array of cutting edge (pun intended) tools to paying members. And the best part: Ford is working closely with TechShop to incentivize employee inventions to bolster the automaker’s patent portfolio.

Ford already has about 17,000 pending and issued patents, but expect that number to skyrocket in the coming years. Ford Global Technologies now offers a free three-month membership to TechShop Detroit for potentially patentable ideas. The company projects that 2,000 incentive memberships will be awarded this year…and more to come in the future.


OUCH! Toyota RAV4 EV Starts Over $50K

On: Thu, May 10, 2012 at 12:30PM | By: Chris Weiss

Toyota RAV4 EV test 2

As promised, Toyota debuted its RAV4 EV at the 2012 Electric Vehicles Symposium this week. If you were awaiting the RAV4 EV with high hopes that it would give you an intriguing electric option with more space and utility than the tiny city cars that currently carry electric powertrains, you had better have a decent bank account. The RAV4 EV will start at $50,610 (including delivery) when it goes on sale this summer.

Given the high premium demanded by electric vehicles, we're not entirely surprised at the high price of the RAV4 EV. Still, that price looks much more Lexus than Toyota and is more than double the price of the gas-powered RAV4. Toyota doesn't even mention an all-wheel-drive option, so while the RAV4 EV may be the "only all-electric SUV on the market," it won't really be a proper SUV and won't have the same utility or all-conditions driving capability. It's basically another "twice the price for half the car" EV.

Google-Equipped Toyota Prius Is First Car With Driver's License

On: Thu, May 10, 2012 at 10:44AM | By: Chris Weiss

Google-Equipped Toyota Prius Is First Car With Driver's License test 2

After passing a law opening the door for self-driven cars, the state of Nevada is following with the bureaucratic actions necessary to put those cars on the road. The state's Department of Motor Vehicles has approved the very first autonomous vehicle license. And the Google Toyota Prius in question is not happy with how its picture turned out.

In last year's bill, the Nevada legislature authorized the Department of Transportation to devise rules and regulations for autonomous vehicles. Google was one of the strongest supporters of the bills, as it sought to use Nevada roadways to test its fleet of self-driving Toyota Prii.

Auto Industry To Invest In Internet Advertising

On: Mon, May 7, 2012 at 12:56PM | By: Chris Weiss

Auto Industry To Invest In Internet Advertising test 2

Automotive commercials have been among the most interesting forms of advertising this year. Between Fiat's sultry Romanian model (+ Charlie Sheen), the return of Ferris Bueller and Chevy's raft of Sonic stunts, automotive commercials have both shocked and entertained throughout the first few months of 2012. According to a new study, automotive investment in advertising will only increase throughout this year.

Hybrid Sales Leap In April

On: Fri, May 4, 2012 at 10:04AM | By: Chris Weiss

Hybrid Sales Leap In April test 2

Gas prices are not expected to abate for another month or so. In the meantime, greener cars continue to enjoy a small renaissance. Sales of several prominent hybrids experienced 100 percent leaps last month.

According to Inside Line, sales of Toyota's market-defining hybrid vehicles led a strong month for hybrids in general with a 125 percent leap from April 2010. Toyota sold 32,593 hybrids in all last month and 25,168 Prius models. Toyota's luxury arm Lexus reported a more modest gain of 18 percent for hybrids like the CT-200h.

Morgan Three-Wheeler Coming To US

On: Thu, May 3, 2012 at 10:01AM | By: Chris Weiss

Morgan Three-Wheeler Coming To US test 2

Remember the days when US streets and highways were decorated by the occasional Plymouth Prowler? Well, they're about to get an even more ornate decoration in the form of the Morgan Three-Wheeler. The bike..car...three-wheeler has been announced for US sale.

When we first saw the Morgan Three-Wheeler, we didn't think it had much of a chance at US sale. We figured that somewhere within the 1,155-lb. package of tiny, open cabin, exposed motor and ultra-thin wheels was a host of US safety violations. But thanks to the fact that its three-wheeled layout and low-volume production give it some reprieve from the tougher restrictions facing four-wheeled cars, the Three-Wheeler has already been approved for US sale. Morgan will sell the funky trio of wheels via three US dealers, according to reports this week.

Google Looking For Automaker Partner On Autonomous Cars

On: Fri, Apr 27, 2012 at 3:04PM | By: Chris Weiss

Google Looking For Automaker Partner On Autonomous Cars test 2

Before we heard a peep about Cadillac Super Cruise , we heard about Google's autonomous car. One of the original driving forces behind autonomous vehicles, Google has been working on its driverless car program for several years and even got the law changed to help it along. Now the company is looking for a rather important missing puzzle piece: an automotive partner.

Google may be one of the world's brightest go tos when it comes to Internet and mapping, but it doesn't have much experience wrenching around under the hood of a car. Sure, it could probably come up with the seeding money to develop its own car manufacturing without much difficulty, but why rebuild the wheel when someone that knows what they're doing can build it for you?

Study: Number Of Young Drivers On Big Decline

On: Thu, Apr 26, 2012 at 3:24PM | By: Chris Weiss

Study: Number Of Young Drivers On Big Decline test 2

Many recent studies have demonstrated an ambivalence to driving among teens and young adults - something that was almost unheard of 10 or 20 years ago. The latest study from the University of Michigan shows that the number of young drivers has been on decline over the past 25 years.

According to the study's findings, the percentage of 16 to 39 year olds with driver's licenses dropped markedly between 1983 and 2008. The sharpest drop-off was observed in the youngest part of that demographic. For instance, the percentage of 17 year-olds with licenses was about 50 percent in 2008, compared to 69 percent in 1983. Among 20 to 24 year-olds, 82 percent had licenses in 2008, 92 percent in 1983. There was even a 3.2 percent drop in licenses among 35 to 39 year-olds.