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The Latest News And Reviews
Throughout The Car Industry

Categories: Reports

Chevy Selling More Volts Than Corvettes

On: Tue, Jun 19, 2012 at 2:11PM | By: Chris Weiss

Chevy Selling More Volts Than Corvettes test 2

The Chevy Volt hasn't been a top seller at GM, but it is outselling one icon in its second year on the market. We're close to halfway through the year, and the Volt has a comfortable lead over the Chevy Corvette.

Last year, Chevy sold around 13,200 Corvettes, not too far from double the 7,641 Volts that it sold. This year, however, the Volt has come from behind (not that it's really a competition) to outsell the Corvette. Through the first five months of the year, Chevy has delivered 7,057 Volts to dealers and 5,547 Corvettes. Since those are dealer delivery numbers and not actual sales, some of those Volts (and Corvettes) are certainly sitting at dealerships, so the number of actual customers may look different. Still, it's not a bad feat for the hybrid.

2013 Hyundai Equus Breaks $60,000 Mark

On: Tue, Jun 19, 2012 at 12:45PM | By: Chris Weiss

2013 Hyundai Equus Breaks $60,000 Mark test 2

A decade or two ago, the proposition of a $60,000 Hyundai would have caused an eruption of laughter. But these days, Hyundai has grown its reputation and upped its reach to higher ends of the market. Until it creates a distinct luxury brand, we'll have to get used to Hyundais costing up into the $60,000s. The 2013 Equus starts at just over $60,000.

Hyundai announced last week that the 2013 Equus will start at $60,150, after the $900 destination charge. That's only $250 more than last year's model, but it pushes the base price of the Equus over the $60K mark.

Volvo Dangles Polestar S60 Concept

On: Tue, Jun 19, 2012 at 10:32AM | By: Chris Salamone

Volvo Polestar S60 test 2

Last November, Volvo dropped the Polestar performance upgrade for the company’s hot hatch C30. And ever since, Volvo fans have wondered when the next Polestar treatment would come – and more importantly, which vehicle would receive the upgrade.

Fortunately for all involved, the wait was worth it. Just a few days ago, Volvo unveiled vehicle specs for an upcoming Polestar S60, injected to the brim with performance enhancers. Sure, the old school S60 Type R could jump from 0-60 in a blistering 5.4 seconds. But this S60 is a whole other animal.

Of course, that’s not surprising when you consider a T6 with modified cylinder head, combustion chambers, inlet manifold, and air intake. Tack on a Garret turbo and the Polestar S60 is good for 508 horsepower and 424 lb-ft of torque.  

Oh, and a projected 0-60 time of 3.9 seconds.

Ford Launches MyFord Mobile App For Focus Electric

On: Mon, Jun 18, 2012 at 2:22PM | By: Chris Weiss

Ford Launches MyFord Mobile App For Focus Electric test 2

It's not really an electric car unless it comes with a smartphone app for battery charging. Ford launched the MyFord Mobile app earlier this week, offering Focus Electric owners a mobile platform for monitoring and controlling battery charging.

Focus Electric deliveries started a couple of weeks ago, and the first owners can now download the mobile app from the iTunes store. The app connects with the car via an AT&T wireless module and allows remote access to battery charge information and other features. When the Focus Electric is plugged in, value-mode charging works with the Microsoft cloud to check local utility rates and activate charging when prices drop, helping to save owners money. Ford calls the technology an industry first.


Subaru Launches Online Guide For Summer Adventure

On: Mon, Jun 18, 2012 at 12:48PM | By: Chris Weiss

Subaru Launches Online Guide For Summer Adventure test 2

Having lived in ski and mountain towns for the past five years, I can say with confidence: the Subaru is the quintessential American mountain car brand. Sure, there are more capable vehicles out there, but it seems that for every one of those you see in the mountains, there are half a dozen Subaru Outbacks.

It comes as no surprise, therefore, that Subaru has launched an interactive online guidebook focused on outdoor activities. It's called the "Subaru Guide to Everything."

A123 Systems Announces New Lithium Ion Technology

On: Mon, Jun 18, 2012 at 11:28AM | By: Chris Weiss

A123 Systems Announces New Lithium Ion Technology test 2

It seems advisable for A123 Systems to focus on fine-tuning its current generation battery technology (read: make sure it works), but it's already looking ahead to the next generation of lithium-ion technology. The battery company that supplies packs to automakers including Fisker and Chevy says that its Nanophosphate EXT will improve operation in extreme temperature ranges.

Outside of more electric range, one of the first 'must haves' for electric vehicle and plug-in hybrid consumers would certainly have to be lower prices. A123 Systems implies that Nanophosphate EXT can give them just that by eliminating expensive thermal management hardware.

Honda Recalls 50,000 Civics!

On: Fri, Jun 15, 2012 at 4:01PM | By: Lou Ruggieri

Honda Recalls 50,000 Civics! test 2

Honda has just released a recall to bring back an astounding 50,190 brand new 2012 Civics. It seems that a retaining clip was not installed during production that may cause the driveshaft to separate. As one can imagine, this potential problem can cause serious trouble for drivers and pedestrians alike. The car may roll away even when placed in "park" unless the emergency brake is engaged. The car could suddenly lose power due to the loss of connection between the engine and the drive wheels, causing serious traffic problems and more than likely a crash.

Owners can call Honda at 1-800-999-1009 to schedule a free inspection/repair of their driveshaft, or simply wait for Honda to begin contacting customers later this month.  

Read on for the full report.

Innovative Rear-View Mirror Eliminates Blind Spots

On: Fri, Jun 15, 2012 at 3:11PM | By: Chris Weiss

Innovative Rear-View Mirror Eliminates Blind Spots test 2

Mathematics professor Dr. R. Andrew Hicks of Philadelphia's Drexel University has designed a solution to a nagging problem. His specially designed rear-view mirror eliminates blind spots, a hazard that has plagued drivers for as long as cars have had mirrors and roads have had lanes. His solution doesn't use any fancy sensor technology, but mathematical-based design.

Hicks recently received a US patent for his mirror design, which greatly increases the field of view displayed in the mirror while keeping distortion to a minimum. The result is that you can clearly see what's behind you, without a blind spot.

2013 Chevy Volt Gets Bigger Battery And Range Boost

On: Fri, Jun 15, 2012 at 12:34PM | By: Chris Weiss

2013 Chevy Volt Gets Bigger Battery And Range Boost test 2

The Chevy Volt is really giving the Nissan Leaf a run for its money. For the 2012 model, its price inched ever closer, and now another important figure is creeping up on Nissan. The 2013 Volt will use a re-engineered lithium-ion battery to increase both electric-only range and overall fuel economy.

The new Volt, which will hit dealerships in August, adds three miles to its zero-emissions range for a total of 38 miles. In terms of overall efficiency, the new Volt boasts a 98 mpg-e figure, up from 94 mpg-e. The new Volt can travel a total of 380 miles on a full charge/full tank of gas, according to GM.

NHTSA Expands Probe, Chrysler Holds Breath

On: Fri, Jun 15, 2012 at 10:53AM | By: Chris Salamone

Jeep Grand Cherokee Explodes test 2

Late last year a Lake Mary, Florida accident rose to the attention of national media. A 1997 Jeep Grand Cherokee was involved in a rear-end collision, and then proceeded to explode and roast a 24-year-old male caught in a series of tragic, and unexpected, events. And, while heart-wrenching, the incident reached critical media mass not because of the vehicle, driver, or ensuing disaster. Instead, it seemed that the accident verified AND fueled an investigation already underway by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration – which started a full year before, in August 2010.

Even so, up until recently, the NHTSA was set on evaluating only 1993-2004 Jeep Grand Cherokees. Apparently though, after a half year, the NHTSA has finally decided to broaden the scope of the agency’s investigation to include the 2002-2007 Jeep Liberty and…you guessed it…the 1993-2001 Jeep Cherokee. That brings the total to a whopping 5.1 million Chrysler vehicles.

The heart of the debate is the location of Chrysler’s fuel tanks. In older models, mostly made before 2005, the company placed plastic fuel tanks behind the rear axle and slightly below the rear bumper. The Center for Auto Safety alleges that such a location makes the tank more prone to leak or rupture during an impact.

Japanese Brands Score Big In Conumser Perception, Ford And Hyundai On The Right Track

On: Fri, Jun 15, 2012 at 9:36AM | By: Chris Weiss

Japanese Brands Score Big In Conumser Perception, Ford And Hyundai On The R test 2

Auto industry research and analysis firm ALG recently released the results of its spring 2012 Perceived Quality Study. The semiannual study polls consumers in regards to how they view the quality of automotive brands. Japanese brands like Honda and Toyota lead the way, while Ford and Hyundai are most improved.

"Perception is a powerful force in consumer buying behavior. Consumers often base their beliefs about quality on the emotional connection they have with a brand, regardless of the actual quality. Alternatively, a brand that experiences an instance of bad publicity may take years to shake off the negative effects, even if the actual quality is good," ALG describes.