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The Latest News And Reviews
Throughout The Car Industry



Categories: Reports

NAIAS, New Models, And A Rant On Grammar, GM Edition

On: Thu, Jan 14, 2010 at 12:46PM | By: John Welch


NAIAS, New Models, And A Rant On Grammar, GM Edition test 1-1

America has been throwing around the word "Reveals" as if, well, it were an actual word. It isn't; stop that. There aren't any "Hawt New Reveals" coming from the North American International Auto Show, namely because there is no such thing as a "reveals". My ass is puckering just thinking about the first guy who was trying to put together a montage for a LOST commercial and decided the voice-over would include the phrase "Stay tuned this season for shocking reveals" . .. he should be shot, whoever he is. I thought "Newspeak" was the silliest concept ever, the first time I read 1984. Then I watched American televison. And I heard "melty". And I heard "reveals". And now I'm wondering if my TV is watching me while I sleep . . .

Enough of that! There are cerraazzzeee new cars coming to market, and the 'Shopper has your short list of vehicles to watch in 2010 and beyond. First up, the mighty (sic) General Motors . . .


F1 Update, New Teams And New Regulations

On: Tue, Jan 12, 2010 at 1:19PM | By: John Welch


F1 Update, New Teams And New Regulations test 1-1

You gotta love it when "the man" takes one on the chin. In this case, "the man" is Bernie Ecclestone and the Euro-racing elite. Ecclestone has been very open about his feelings regarding the four new teams entering F1 in the 2010 season. Specifically, he doesn't believe some of the teams will make it to the grid; more specifically, he does not believe USF1 will make it to the grid.

Well, how's that crow taste Bernie? Not only is USF1 the obvious leader as far as the new teams are concerned, they appear to be one of the most well prepared teams, period! First, we go over the new "Sporting Regs" and how they will affect the look of the car, then we will update you on each new team on the grid . . . assuming there is anything to update .. .


The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly

On: Fri, Jan 8, 2010 at 5:43PM | By: John Welch


The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly test 1-1

The Buick Regal GS is as exciting as a Buick could possibly be;

Chevy Aveo RS is . . . interesting .. .

and the numbers are in: 2009 SUCKED!


2010 Begins With Positive Sales Numbers

On: Wed, Jan 6, 2010 at 11:28AM | By: John Welch


2010 Toyota 4Runner test 2

It appeared, at the beginning of the year, that 2009 would be the Harbinger of Doom for the American Car Industry. The last year of this decade saw GM burn through two CEOs, Toyota try to murder Americans via floormat, and Ford present itself as the most sensible car-maker on the planet . . . who saw that coming?!

Well, turn that 2009 frown upside down;, the sales results from December are in, and they kick ass! Ford, Toyota, Subaru, and Hyundai Group are all up 15% compared to December 2008, while GM brands Chevrolet, Buick, GMC, and Cadillac are all up 13%. The industry as whole is down 21%, but we will take positive news where we can get it. Venture inside the post for the hard numbers and statistics . . .


 

Ford Takes The Fight To Chevy; New Power For Mustang On The Way

On: Wed, Dec 30, 2009 at 3:16PM | By: John Welch


Ford Takes The Fight To Chevy; New Power For Mustang On The Way test 1-1

The Ford Mustang has always been a desirable car. Not a good car per se, but certainly desirable. From the compact proportions of the Fox-body cars to the muscular quarter-window dogleg found on SN-95 Mustangs, there were always things to like about the modern Mustang. In 2005 Ford decided that the car deserved an influx of 'cool'. The consumer climate at the time was arguably as fertile for Ford as it was in 1965. Having the intensely popular "pony-car" market to yourself (GM killed the Camaro/Firebird in 2002, and there was no offering in the sub-thirty grand price range featuring a V8 and rear-wheel drive . . . from any manufacturer!) is one thing, but Ford placing itself on the leading edge of 2005's retro-styling trend was sheer genius. The Mini was selling like Copenhagen at a Marine BX and Ford had learned many lessons on how not to produce a retro car from the ill-fated 2002 Thunderbird.

Using this knowledge and the market reports from Mini, among others, Ford redesigned the Mustang and pooped out a serious winner. Ford took the car racing. They won . . . everything. Grand-Am, Euro GT3 and 4, even the Shelby Cobra began to rack up victories in the Speed World Challenge GT division.

For 2009 the Mustang was updated with smoother exterior styling and a niffty one-piece dash. The car is nice looking, but as usual the powertrains offered in the non-Cobra models left something to be desired. Still, the Mustang was able to take comparison test wins from the Camaro and Challenger despite being down nearly 100 bhp to those to cars. Ford hath conquered, but there is no rest for the wicked.

For 2010 the Mustang GT gets the power it has been sorely lacking, in the form of a high-tech DOHC beast affectionately named "Coyote". To those of us occupying real estate in Central Florida, the engine is called, simply: "Five-Oh" . . .


USF1 Launches Website; Chew On That, Bernie!

On: Mon, Dec 28, 2009 at 3:13PM | By: John Welch


USF1 test 2

Politics, finance, lawyering, and F1, all business full of dirty, cheating scumbags. Industries rife with parasites, teeming with socio-economic disease. Foul people, doing underhanded work, making a gazillion dollars by holding down the little guy. Most unfortunately, without the work of these money-grubbing societal denizens, the world would cease to spin on its axis. Economies would collapse, professional atheletes would actually go to jail, and my Sundays would not be filled with carbonfiber-dressed, 3g-pulling, techno-overload. Filthy, filthy occupations, yet absolutely necessary. Now where's that phone book, I am going to contest every single one of these jay-walking tickets . . .


Schumacher Trades Rosso For Silver

On: Wed, Dec 23, 2009 at 4:27PM | By: John Welch


Schumi to Mercedes! test 2

Yesterday the 'Shopper reported on the possiblity of Michael Schumacher returning to F1, under the MecedesGP Petronas (formerly 'Brawn GP', a mouthful, I know!) banner. Well, this morning (for Germans anyway, we were all still asleep), Schumacher made the announcement we have all known was coming: He is returning to the Formula One grid in 2010.

Inside the post you will find extended quotes from the central parties involved: Schumacher, Ross Brawn, and Norbert Haug, Mercedes-Benz Sporting Director. Welcome back, Michael!


Lutz Takes The Wraps Off Of GM's Near Future Product

On: Thu, Dec 17, 2009 at 3:47PM | By: John Welch


Maximum Bob Lutz test 2

Another day, another boring, useful-information free press conference from GM. The world has to be getting as sick of this as I am . . . has this blog even reported on anything other than GM in the last month? Yeah, I guess we have, but not much damnit!

Anyway, the esteemed Mr. Bob Lutz gives us small morsels of info regarding the next Malibu and its cousins, assuming anyone cares . . .


Forza 3 Blowing Sony Into The Weeds

On: Wed, Dec 16, 2009 at 5:41PM | By: John Welch


Forza Motorsport 3 test 2

Forza Motorsport 3 is handily beating the crap out of its cross-Pacific rival Gran Turismo 5, mostly because Gran Turismo 5 doesn't actually exist. Shame on you, Sony. Shame.

The third installment of the Forza series has offcially crested the one million sales mark, AND they have a Christmas present for us all! Those darn oil-drenched fools at the Turn 10 studios have put together ten new cars that didn't make it to the original release, and pasted them on Xbox Live for your approval. Full press release inside yonder post . ..


Dyson-Mazda Racing Into 2010

On: Wed, Dec 16, 2009 at 12:34PM | By: John Welch


Dyson Racing test 2


The Lola-built LMP2 coupes of Dyson Mazda Racing are arguably the most visually stimulating cars entered in the American Le Mans Series. Good lookin'? Yes. Reliable? Eh, not so much.

Last season saw the Dyson team constantly battling mechanical gremlins - problems with the turbo, fuel delivery issues, overheating . . . when the car ran well however, it was unstoppable. And let's not forget, ravishing.

For 2010 the team has put serious man-hours into engineering a bullet proof racer. Lola has been working on some new tricks as well. Pending IMSA approval, the team will also switch to bio-butanol fuel for both cars . . . busy off season!


Whitacre Looking For a Few Good Executives, Willing To Work For Peanuts

On: Tue, Dec 15, 2009 at 12:50PM | By: John Welch


Hooray America! test 2

Tex Whitacre Jr. and GM's Board of Executives are currently searching for “a motivating, inspirational leader” to direct the ailing company back to its former glory. Though candidates need to be strong and accomplished leaders, they don't need to be existing CEOs or even have strong auto credentials ("auto credentials" being worth little more then a hill of beans in 2009 . . .).

Whitacre told reporters that he was looking for "A person that's a motivating, inspirational leader that's familiar with big companies, manufacturing or industrial, would be helpful." No ess; I thought you were planning on hiring a career junkie as the new CEO . . . instead you want a strong leader with manufacturing or industrial experience . . . gee, would that even apply to a mass-market auto manufacturer? Seriously, Tex, if you're going to call press conferences, try actually saying something at said conferences.