The Latest News And Reviews
Throughout The Car Industry
Last month, the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute reported that the average fuel economy for new cars had broken 24 MPG for the first time. The 24 MPG figure didn't last long, though, as April's average dropped right back down to the same level as it was in February.
Despite the fact that some key hybrids increased twofold from April 2010, overall fuel economy still dipped to 23.9 MPG from 24.1 MPG in March. UMTRI cites a reprieve in gas-price increases in late April as a possible explanation. Prior to April, fuel economy had been on the rise all year - from 23.6 MPG in January to 23.9 MPG in February to 24.1 MPG in March.
Posted In: Hybrid / Green, Reports
Tags: fuel economy, new cars, business, car sales, green,
Based upon the strong reaction that its up! production models and concepts have inspired, Volkswagen appears ready to expand its green city car line. It's currently considering an up! crossover based upon the cross up! concept it showed in Frankfurt.
It's no surprise that Volkswagen is considering expanding the up! line. It has been showing up! concepts at nearly every major auto show of late - including a quartet at this year's Geneva Motor Show. Meanwhile, the up! production car, which launched in Europe recently, has won some major accolades, including World Car of the Year.
Posted In: Concept Cars, Hybrid / Green, Reports
Tags: Volkswagen, Up!, crossovers, cross up!, new cars, VW, concepts
As we learned from Chrysler's recent Viper heritage video, Chrysler received an emotional response when it introduced the Viper concept back in 1989. In the video, former Chrysler chief Lee Iacocca says that one of the first people to inquire about Viper purchase was the president of the German Ferrari club, a fact that really highlights the level of performance and aesthetics Chrysler had successfully attained.
The new 2013 Viper has an equally compelling (though likely more manufactured) story relating to Ferrari. Ferrari Chairman Luca Cordero di Montezemolo was left speechless when he first got a close-up look at the new SRT Viper.
Posted In: Exotics, Reports
Tags: Ferrari, Luca Montelzomo, Sergio Marchionne, 2013 Dodge Viper
It used to be that you had to buy a GM vehicle to enjoy OnStar, GM's navigation and roadside assistance interface. Then last year, GM launched OnStar 'For My Vehicle' (FMV), an aftermarket kit that makes OnStar available on all types of cars. So far, people have responded to the over-the-counter approach.
In a recent press release, GM details that OnStar has been particularly popular with owners of newer vehicles, particularly 2011 models. Of its OnStar FMV buyers, 15.6 percent are Toyota owners and 12.3 percent are Ford owners. Significantly, nearly a third of those Ford buyers own models that offered Ford's Sync system at time of purchase, showing clearly that they had some preference for OnStar's features over Sync's.
Cars made out of money may sound too ostentatious for even a rap video, but Ford has some truer intentions than first impressions may give. The automaker said this month that it's looking into using recycled US currency in certain vehicle components.
Why recycled money? We conclude mostly because it makes a helluva publicity stunt. Not only can Ford play the green (in more ways than one) card, but it gets a rather unique, headline-making story that's about quirky enough for the front page of Yahoo! News.
Posted In: Hybrid / Green, Reports, Technology
Tags: Ford, green, recycling, weird, sustainable materials
As with most things in life, it's the little things that will get you. This not only applies to people, but to cars too. The new Chrysler 300 and Dodge Charger have made a giant splash in the world of automotive excitement, but this week Chrysler had to quell some of that enthusiasm when it issued a recall of 119,072 Chargers and 300s made as 2011 and 2012 models due to a problem with overheating power distribution centers which could cause the ABS/ESC systems to malfunction and become inoperable. Having a non-functioning ABS/ESC system could increase the likelihood of a crash -- which is a big deal, but started off with a very little thing.
Posted In: Recalls, Reports, Safety
Tags: Chrysler, Charger, 300, Electrical, ABS/ESC, Overheat
Ever since we found out about the $40,000 price tag, we have kind of written the Focus Electric off. It combines the high price of the Chevy Volt with the low range of the Nissan Leaf - not exactly a promising vehicle. But, the car is set to launch in the coming weeks, and Ford has released some new details about that launch.
The "details" of the launch don't do the courtesy of giving exact dates, leaving things to general time frames like "spring" and "summer." What they do provide is a time line of which markets will get the Focus Electric first.
Posted In: Hybrid / Green, Reports
Tags: Ford, Focus, EV, electric, focus electric, green
After making its European and Asian debuts, things are looking good for the Bentley SUV. Bentley says that it's currently working on a business case for a production version of the EXP-9, and it believes it could sell about 3,000 models a year. It seems confident that official approval from Volkswagen is but a formality.
Last year, Bentley sold roughly 7,000 units from its Mulsanne-Continental line, so an extra 3,000 units from an SUV line wouldn't be anything to snort at. Bentley hasn't publicly okayed the model for production, but it sounds like the business case is making itself.
Posted In: Concept Cars, Exotics, Reports
Tags: Bentley, SUV, EXP-9, reports, business, China, Russia
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.
Posted In: Car News, Reports
Tags: Auto industry, market, advertising, business, ads
The parking lot is one of the unheralded heroes of everyday living. If you've ever gone to an event where there was no parking lot, or the parking lot was full, or you had to pay premium pricing for a parking spot, you should have some appreciation for just how valuable a good piece of lined asphalt really is. If you don't have such appreciation, the world's most awesome Lamborghini parking lot should give it to you.
For those of us that don't drive or see exotic cars regularly, a quick trip past a Lamborghini or Ferrari dealership is an exciting experience. Seeing a few red supercars lined up in a window or dealership lot is pretty novel. Ordinarily, you'd be happy just to see a single model.
Posted In: Exotics, Videos, Auto Shows
Tags: videos, exotics, supercars, Lamborghinis, classics
Polish supercar. Nope, that's not a punchline awaiting a joke. That's an actual thing that goes by the name of Arrinera. Apparently, it's not just vaporware either. The Polish supercar company has announced the price and final specs of its
Lamborghini knockoff first car.
Arrinera gained some cred when it name-dropped supercar icon Lee Noble in developing its supercar (which still doesn't seem to have a model name), and it gets one step closer to actual reality with the announcement of pricing and details. When compared with other European supercars, the Arrinera could be viewed as a bargain. It will base at a rather humble $160,060.
Posted In: Exotics, Reports, Special / Limited Edition
Tags: Arrinera, Poland, supercars, new cars, Lee Noble