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The Latest News And Reviews
Throughout The Car Industry

Categories: Car News

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.

Holding Breath, Euro-Spec Ford Ranger Debuts

On: Thu, Apr 26, 2012 at 2:17PM | By: Chris Salamone

All-new Ford Ranger test 2

Back and February, a few spy shots popped up on the internet which tantalized viewers with the possibility of a future all-new Ford Ranger playing around the streets of Los Angeles. Up until now, Ford has kept a tight lid on an impending Ranger – refusing to provide the juicy details. But the Euro specific commercial vehicle show in Burmingham, UK has arrived, and Ford cometh with a full lineup of all-new Rangers.

As usual, buyers can expect 4x2 and 4x4 drivetrains and three cab body types: regular, super, and double. But, unlike in the United States, Ford has opted to value practicality with the European Ranger’s duo of powertrain options…which only feature diesel fuel.

Who'd A Thunk? Study Shows Americans Buying More Fuel Efficient Cars

On: Wed, Apr 25, 2012 at 9:37AM | By: Chris Weiss

Americans Buying More Fuel Efficient Cars test 2

Americans may not yet be keen on buying multiple hybrids, but they are making a sure move toward more fuel efficient cars. With gas prices bubbling toward record highs, we probably didn't need a study to tell us what intuition is already whispering in our ears. But a study confirms it.

The University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute, which has been following these things for about four years, said this month that average fuel economy of new vehicles purchased in March topped 24 mpg for the first time ever. Average fuel economy took a small but notable step from 23.9 mpg in February to 24.1 mpg in March. That's a rise of 4 mpg/20 percent from October 2007, the first month that the Institute conducted the study.

Honda Takes Home Award For Best Value Retention

On: Tue, Apr 24, 2012 at 1:51PM | By: Chris Weiss

Honda Takes Home Award For Best Value Retention test 2

In its second annual Best Retained Value Awards, Edmunds.com finds that Honda has the best value retention among car brands. Runner up? Acura, Honda's luxury brand.

In a pretty strong performance, Honda scores 47.9 percent and Acura scores 44.6, giving Honda Motor Co. the non-luxury and luxury awards. The awards recognize the brands whose cars have the highest projected residual value after five years. The score is based upon the projected five-year value of 2012 models that launched before the end of 2011.


Closed Refineries May Jack Eastern Gas Prices

On: Tue, Apr 24, 2012 at 10:34AM | By: Chris Weiss

Closed Refineries May Jack Eastern Gas Prices test 2

Given the record-high-scraping cost of gas, you might be under the impression that the entire oil industry is floating on 100-dollar-bill rafts in the middle of large infiniti pools of refined oil. But that impression would be false. Oil companies are actually shutting down refineries, and it may cause regional gas prices to soar even higher than they are likely to anyway.

According to a report on CNN, older refineries in the northeast are being shut down because they can't effectively process the cheaper, heavier types of oil currently being imported from the Middle East, Venezuela and other regions. The refineries are only capable of efficiently processing light, sweet oil, which costs an extra $20 per barrel.

Sunoco, which says that it has been losing a million dollars a day for three years on its refining business, has closed one refinery near Philadelphia and is trying to sell another in the area. ConocoPhillips also closed a Philadelphia-area refinery last fall.

Barf! Government Vehicles Found Sitting Pretty

On: Fri, Apr 20, 2012 at 12:18PM | By: Chris Salamone

Miami-Dade County cars test 2

What do twelve Ford F-250s, at least fifteen minivans, five Toyota Prii, and a hodgepodge of barely used government-purchased vehicles have in common? They make up a portion of the 100 or so Miami-Dade County cars which sit idly at the Earlington Heights Metrorail garage, totaling about $965,000.00 in dormant assets.

Since 2006 and 2007, Miami-Dade County has left the vehicles parked, out of service, and lying in wait. And, as we all know, unused cars don’t exactly remain maintenance or cost free – tires, batteries, fluids…and let’s not forget insurance. So why, in the name of all things holy, does Miami-Dade have 100+ cars collecting dust?

Unfortunately, the answer to that question is anything but satisfying. The County decided to purchase these vehicles just before the Great Recession unfolded. Shortly after buying, the economy tanked and Miami-Dade had to trim their workforce and – you guessed it – number of cars on the road.

Land Rover DC100 May Become Entry Level 'Leisure' Model

On: Fri, Apr 20, 2012 at 10:38AM | By: Chris Weiss

Land Rover DC100 May Become Entry Level 'Leisure' Model test 2

We've been saying since the day we saw it that the Land Rover DC100 concept just doesn't look hard or strong enough to become the next Defender. An entry level leisure model below the Evoque? That we could buy. And apparently Land Rover is starting to agree.

According to Autocar, Land Rover is considering using the DC100 as an all-new leisure model to take on the role of its cheapest model. That we understand. What we don't understand is the reason - apparently Land Rover has received such a strong positive reaction to the model that they want to make it available to the welcoming masses, instead of parking it into the niche the Defender appeals to.

Toyota Reveals 2013 Avalon

On: Thu, Apr 19, 2012 at 3:25PM | By: Chris Weiss

2013 Toyota Avalon test 2

The Toyota Avalon isn't exactly the type of car that people get excited about, but the newest version is a marked enough departure to cause a small stir. The Toyota sedan gets a much updated look that practically begs for a new model name.

As we saw from the teaser picture, Toyota wasn't just looking for a slight evolution, it was looking to change the Avalon's image. The 2012 Avalon is a sedan that could get lost - even in Toyota's line of quality but forgettable sedan designs. But the 2013 Avalon is enough to have people asking: 'What's that car'.

Fisker Lays Off A Dozen More Workers At Delaware Factory

On: Wed, Apr 18, 2012 at 12:12PM | By: David Walter

Fisker Atlantic test 2

I remember first hearing that Fisker (maker of the innovative, high-performance $100,000 Karma) would be building their hybrid-luxury-sports cars at the former General Motors plant in Wilmington, Delaware. For a car enthusiast born and raised in the second smallest state in the nation, this was exciting news – and not because of the size and obscurity of the "Diamond State" (well, maybe a little).

Growing up there, everyone knew someone who worked in the auto industry – either at the GM plant in Newport or the Chrysler plant in Newark. My grandfather, two uncles, an aunt, and various friends and neighbors worked most of their lives at the Newark Chrysler plant. However, in 2008, the plant (where the Durango had been built since 1997) closed due to a slowing economy and demand for gas-guzzling SUVs.

Similarly, GM closed its factory in Newport/Wilmington in 2009 after building cars for decades.

So, you can see why car manufacturing’s return to Delaware came as such as an exciting surprise – and why recent news about Fisker is equally disappointing.

Carolla Takes Cake At Long Beach Grand Prix

On: Mon, Apr 16, 2012 at 3:52PM | By: Chris Salamone

Adam Corolla test 2

We’ve seen Adam Carolla do movies, standup comedy, pseudo-journalistic auto enthusiast TV shows, and celebreality. We’ve also seen him pick up a healthy appetite for vintage racing. Somehow though, despite frequent at bats, Mr. Carolla has struggled to achieve automotive stardom – following the burnt rubber of industry giants like Steve McQueen or Jay Leno.

But no longer: as of Saturday’s 36th Annual Toyota Pro/Celebrity Grand Prix at Long Beach, Adam Carolla has entered the annals of driving greatness by achieving victory despite nearby accidents and a late-stage challenger.

Chevy Avalanche Put To Pasture

On: Mon, Apr 16, 2012 at 10:40AM | By: Chris Salamone

2012 Chevrolet Avalanche test 2

Last Friday, General Motors announced plans to cease production on the company’s most bizarre vehicle. Since 2002, the Chevy Avalanche has offered truck buyers a unique mix of interior space, fancy features, girthy dimensions, and a premium price tag – which, at least early on, seemed to be a winning combination for pickup consumers. Unfortunately, the year 2008 came and buyer perspective changed with a trimmed down world economy.

93,482 Chevy Avalanches rolled into new driveways in 2003 but, in comparison, only about 20,000 sold in 2011. And that means GM isn’t willing to update a new Chevy Avalanche in an upcoming truck renovation cycle. 2013 Chevy Avalanches will be the last of their kind, the final generation.