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Auto Industry News
And Car Reviews

Chrysler To Bring Detroit Thunder, Mopar Style

On: Mon, Jan 2, 2012 at 4:20PM | By: Chris Salamone

Chrysler 200 S test 2

With so much media coverage on the upcoming Dodge Dart, Chrysler has decided to diversify their new offerings in the form of true blue American muscle. And with these two latest additions to the Chrysler lineup consumers can’t possibly confuse the company’s brand image as a watered-down Italian carmaker. Instead, Chrysler is going back to its roots.

Queue Aaron Copland’s Rodeo, a throaty engine, screeching, and drifting tire smoke. Chrysler has announced plans to introduce a 200 Super S and Dodge Charger Redline by Mopar.

Nissan To Launch New Pathfinder Concept And E-Van In Detroit

On: Mon, Jan 2, 2012 at 2:33PM | By: Chris Weiss

Nissan To Launch New Pathfinder Concept And E-Van In Detroit test 2

In a run-up to the holidays, automakers 'round the world were in a frenzy to make all their announcements before the holidays rendered the public indifferent to all but the biggest news headlines. Nissan teased its North American International Auto Show plans when it revealed that it will show a Pathfinder Concept and new electric van in Detroit. It also said that it will pick up where it left off in LA, serving show-goers food from an NV food truck.

Nissan has been absent from the Detroit Auto Show for the past two years, choosing to focus its attention on other major US shows around the same time (LA, New York and Chicago). This year it will be back and it will bring some buzz.

Alfa Romeo 4C May Be Priced Under $45K

On: Mon, Jan 2, 2012 at 12:49PM | By: Chris Weiss

Alfa Romeo 4C May Be Priced Under $45K test 2

Most pricing estimates that we've seen have put the price of the upcoming Alfa Romeo 4C at between $55,000 and $70,000. However, those estimates have primarily been in euros or pounds, with US figures gained by simple pound/euro-to-dollar conversions. Last week, reports indicated that the US price of the sexy 4C could be significantly lower.

In a conversation with Inside Line, Alfa Romeo executives hinted that the price of the 4C could be $45,000 or less. The 4C will lead Alfa's return to the US market in 2013.

Chevy Sonics Recalled For Missing Brake Pads

On: Mon, Jan 2, 2012 at 11:32AM | By: Lou Ruggieri

Chevy Sonics Recalled For Missing Brake Pads test 2

Look, when it comes to recalls, we will be the first to admit that some recalls are definitely worse than others. Occasionally there may be an issue with a faulty solder on one out of ten thousands spots on a particular model from a particular year, and yes, although annoying, it isn't altogether unexpected every now and then. As long as you are made aware of the problem (which we here at blog.autoshopper.com try to help with), you can hopefully have the issued fixed as soon as possible without any real issue.

Now, up until this week, Chevrolet had been doing fairly well in the public eye for no other reason than it hasn't really had any major recalls like some other big-name car companies. However, that was last week. This week Chevy has announced the recall of 4,296 Chevy Sonics made from June 2, 2011 through November 21, 2011 (all of which are designed 2012 models) because, "on some of these vehicles, the front brake inner or outer pad may be missing." 

Like we said, some recalls are just simply worse than others. Missing brake pads is a tough one to explain to your customers. GM is planning on notifying (and more than likely apologizing) on or around January 21, but quite honestly, that still doesn't feel fast enough.

Read on for the full report from Safercar.gov.


Bugatti vs. GT-R, When Worlds Collide [Video]

On: Mon, Jan 2, 2012 at 9:52AM | By: Chris Salamone

Bugatti Races GT-R test 2

Well, it’s not every day we see two industry titans battle head-to-head in a quarter mile, full throttle sprint to the finish. Just a few days ago, these seemingly unlikely competitors – considering their respective costs-to-purchase – met to do just that in the appropriately sophisticated city of Palm Beach, Florida at the Palm Beach International Raceway.

Supercar fans may not like the results, however. While the Bugatti Veyron put up an impressive post time, beating the GT-R, the gap between the two vehicles was hardly enough to justify their price disparity. For 2011, the Bugatti Veyron started with an MSRP over $2,000,000 and yet the Nissan GT-R hovers around a meager $90,000.

Did the Bugatti perform 20 times better than Nissan’s Godzilla? Ha! We might as well be asking if Godzilla flinched when Mothra went all ‘protective mother’ on the world to save her eggs.

2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee HPE800 Twin Turbo

On: Fri, Dec 30, 2011 at 5:10PM | By: Stephanie Lunsford

2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee HPE800 Twin Turbo test 2

If you’re looking to upgrade your Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8 you might want to have a look at the all-new 2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee HPE800 twin turbo. It has all the performance you would need if you love fast cars.

The crew from Hennessey took their factory 6.4-liter Hemi and increased the displacement to  7.0-liter and added twin turbo to go with it. The result is 805 hp and 823 Ib.-ft. of torque which lets the HPE800 go from 0-60 mpg in 3.1 seconds and in a half a mile quarter run it makes it in 10.9 seconds at a speed of 130 mpg.

All Electric Jeep Grand Cherokee By AMP

On: Fri, Dec 30, 2011 at 10:51AM | By: Chris Weiss

All Electric Jeep Grand Cherokee By AMP test 2

Auto tuning must be among the least green endeavors on Earth. These tuners take gas-powered cars that are often among the least efficient and dirtiest on the planet and make them even more powerful (and more dirty). But not every single tuner thrives on increasing displacement and adding pressure charging toward outrageous output figures. Ohio-based tuner Amp actually makes cars cleaner. The tuner's latest endeavor is a fully electric Jeep Grand Cherokee.

I'd love to enjoy the efficiency of an electric vehicle, especially since I don't drive often or far. Problem is, I live in the mountains and the winter gets cold and snowy. A compact, FWD electric car isn't going to cut it. The Toyota Rav4 EV, which will launch in the next couple of years, looks promising, but what I'd really like to see is a fully capable all-electric SUV. And I can't think of a better model than the Jeep Grand Cherokee.

OnStar To Showcase 4G Technologies Like Video Chat

On: Thu, Dec 29, 2011 at 5:28PM | By: Chris Weiss

OnStar To Showcase 4G Technologies Like Video Chat test 2

At last year's Consumer Electronics Show, GM's OnStar unveiled a new level of in-vehicle technologies developed in cooperation with Verizon. The platform, which was equipped to a Buick LaCrosse research vehicle, utilized Verizon's 4G LTE mobile network to deliver all kinds of advanced technological in-vehicle functions like remote monitoring, home monitoring and video chat. At this year's CES show, OnStar will show the latest evolution of its system.

All I Want For Christmas Is A Mini Rocketman!

On: Thu, Dec 29, 2011 at 2:36PM | By: Chris Weiss

All I Want For Christmas Is A Mini Rocketman! test 2

I'm about the farthest thing from a Mini fan as there ever was, but even I appreciated the interesting, true-to-form nature of the Rocketman concept. Bucking the not-so-mini trend of other current Mini cars like the Countryman, the Rocketman was a refreshing return to small, a return to Mini's roots. The concept car, which debuted at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show, also included a number of interesting design elements. The car hasn't been officially green-lighted just yet, but if one Mini designer gets his Christmas wish, it will be.

In a dinner conversation with Inside Line, Mini design chief Anders Warming called the Rocketman a car that could "claim the true heritage of the brand," and went on to say that the car is "on my Christmas list."

Japanese Smart Seats Could Prevent Theft

On: Thu, Dec 29, 2011 at 11:30AM | By: Chris Weiss

Japanese Smart Seats Could Prevent Theft test 2

Researchers in Japan have designed an interesting new type of anti-theft device for vehicles. The specially designed driver seat is capable of recognizing its owner and cutting off the ignition if a foreign...um..backside is present.

Developed at the Advanced Institute of Industrial Technology in Tokyo, the seats, which we'll call smart seats, incorporate a series of 360 pressure sensors that are capable of recognizing the size and shape of the owner. Data from the sensors is sent to the cloud where an external computer analyzes it. If the profile matches the rightful owner, the car starts. If the profile doesn't match, the car doesn't start.

Utah Man Wins Lamborghini Murcielago, Crashes It The Same Day

On: Thu, Dec 29, 2011 at 10:04AM | By: Stephanie Lunsford

David Dopp Lamborghini Winner! test 2

David Dopp won a Lamborghini Murcielago during a halftime show of a BYU football game in November. He was one of ten finalists in the Mavericks gas station “Joe Schmo to Lambo” contest at Lavelle Edwards Stadium.

Dopp wasn’t able to take the car home immediately; he had to put insurance on the car before they would deliver it to his house. After a ceremony at a Maverick gas station in Dopp’s hometown of Santaquin, he was finally handed over the keys to his new Lamborghini by a nonprofit organization.