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Auto Industry News
And Car Reviews

The Wheels On Your Car Go Round And Round...

On: Tue, Sep 20, 2011 at 1:30PM | By: Peter C Sessler

The Wheels On Your Car Go Round And Round... test 2

I have to admit that wheels make the vehicle. Take any car or truck, put a set of nice wheels on it and—presto!—you’ve got a vehicle that stands out. It’s especially true if your car originally came with wheel covers. Some wheel cover designs are visually interesting, to be sure, but they still look like what they are—pieces of painted plastic.

 Some cars, of course, already come from the factory with aluminum wheels. You’ll find that practically every top-of-the-line model from every car maker is equipped with eye-catching wheels.

But, if you are not the proud owner of one of those vehicles, and you want to add some pizzazz to your drive, then a nice set of wheels will make a tremendous difference. Not only will your car look better, but it will perform better too.

There are a bewildering variety of wheel designs to choose from in various widths, diameters, colors, and finishes. It’s easy to make an expensive mistake here.

2011 Initial Quaility Survey Results

On: Tue, Sep 20, 2011 at 12:19PM | By: Peter C Sessler

2011 Initial Quaility Survey Results test 2

Every year the gods over at Agoura Hills speak and the auto manufacturers quake in their... boots. I’m talking about the research and survey firm J.D. Power and Associates. They publish The Power Report, a monthly newsletter targeted towards the auto industry. Besides the usual business-oriented articles, the company also conducts a number of surveys and their best known one is the J.D. Power and Associates’ Initial Quality Survey.

Infiniti To Build Range-Extending Sports Car

On: Tue, Sep 20, 2011 at 11:01AM | By: Chris Weiss

Infiniti To Build Range-Extending Sports Car test 2

For most companies, the Frankfurt Motor Show is where the teasing stopped and the full revealing began. But for Infiniti, the Frankfurt Motor Show was the place for teasing its next exciting release. Nissan's luxury arm said that it will be revealing a range-extending hybrid sports car at the Geneva Motor Show next year.

As is fashionable, Infiniti is calling its car an electric sports car, but reports indicate it will have a small gasoline engine serving as a range-extending generator—that would be a series hybrid.

Alfa Romeo 4C Goes Silver, Production Starts in 2013

On: Tue, Sep 20, 2011 at 10:08AM | By: Chris Weiss

Alfa Romeo 4C Goes Silver, Production Starts in 2013 test 2

After the Alfa Romeo 4C debuted in that captivating candy apple color in Geneva, I would have thought there's no way they could match that beauty. Especially not with a color as plain as silver. But the "fluid metal" 4C that showed up at the Frankfurt Motor Show actually gives the Geneva version a run for its hotness money. I still prefer the red, but this one is a close second.


Four Of Feebay's September Top Five Sales Are VWs! Honestly!

On: Tue, Sep 20, 2011 at 9:03AM | By: Andrew W Davis

Photoillustration by author test 2

For those of you not in-the-know there might be some confusion with my headline. “You’re wrong, writer guy,” you say. “Any fool knows that Bentleys are English and Lamborghinis are Italian.”

Well, Any Fool, you’re wrong, and here’s why: Audi owns Lamborghini and Volkswagen—no lie—owns Bentley. VW owns Audi, too, by the way. And seeing as how Porsche is now part of the VeeDub empire, apart from Mercedes-Benz’ Maybach brand, it’s an (almost) all-VW show.

So, as I said at the outset, the second-most to fifth-most expensive cars on eBay are Volkswagens, to the tune of $1.3 million out of the $1.7 million total. I know! Did I just blow your mind or what?!

Cold Weather Hibernation

On: Tue, Sep 20, 2011 at 7:22AM | By: Peter C Sessler

Cold Weather Hibernation test 2

Some car owners don’t drive their cars during the cold winter months, whether it’s a classic or perhaps a convertible. They prefer to just put their car away for the winter.

If you’re contemplating doing this, know that storing your car for any length of time does require some preparation and precautions, as it’s more than just a matter of putting your car in the garage after Thanksgiving and taking it out in April.

Shock Absorber Basics

On: Mon, Sep 19, 2011 at 4:39PM | By: Peter C Sessler

Shock Absorber Basics test 2

Here’s an easy job you can do in your driveway—so you think. After all, a shock absorber has just two mounting points—one at the top and one at the bottom. What could be simpler? Actually, it is a simple operation, but you have to have the some simple tools to do it.

What about struts? Struts are similar to shocks but they usually incorporate a spring, and require a spring compressor for removal. Unless you decide to make an investment in these tools, you’re better off having these replaced professionally. Most cars use struts in the front and some in the rear as well, but most minivans, trucks, and SUVs use traditional shocks in all four corners.

Jeep Pairs With Fiat For US Panda Production

On: Mon, Sep 19, 2011 at 3:31PM | By: Chris Salamone

Jeep Phoenix/Panda test 2

Edmunds and HubPages report some contradictory information regarding Jeep’s recent plan to bring the Fiat Panda stateside, but both sources suggest that we can expect a Jeep version of Fiat’s AWD Panda in the near future. While HubPages offers a much narrower time window, Edmunds notes that the new Jeep model probably will not arrive on US soil until 2013 as a 2014 model.

At best, most of the information regarding a joint-venture between Jeep and Fiat is mere conjecture. Neither Fiat nor Jeep has officially announced final plans. Yet, some sources indicate that Jeep plans to label their Italian adoption ‘Phoenix’ and we can assume that Phoenix specs will resemble those found on the currently available European Fiat Panda. Pricing should be somewhat north of the current US version of the Fiat 500.

The "Last Eclipse" Earns $35k For Japanese Red Cross At Auction

On: Mon, Sep 19, 2011 at 2:40PM | By: Andrew W Davis

Photoillustration by Author test 2

This wasn’t the only Mitsubishi Mecum Auctions offered in last weekend’s St. Charles sale, though neither T278 (a one-owner red-and-black 1987 Starion bid to $4,500) nor F5/F308 (a white-over-black ’98 300GT SL 5-speed bid to $1,250 then sold at $3,500) were—to my knowledge—sold to benefit any charity.

Listed as Lot S100, this "one-of-a-kind 2012 Eclipse Coupe SE—the very last production Eclipse that rolled off of the assembly line at the company's manufacturing plant in Normal, Illinois"—was auctioned on Saturday at no reserve (that means the high bid “wins” no matter what it is) to benefit the Japanese Red Cross. When the gavel fell it had garnered a top bid of—and, therefore, sold for—$35,000.

I’m sure the charity would have appreciated any amount, but it bears noting that this “Last Eclipse” didn’t sell for much more than the car would get if it was parked on a dealer’s lot. Why? Here’s what I think…

2012 DTM AMG Mercedes C-Coupe

On: Mon, Sep 19, 2011 at 12:20PM | By: Peter C Sessler

2012 DTM AMG Mercedes C-Coupe test 2

Well, here’s another good looking race car put out by Mercedes-Benz. Here at Autoshopper.com, we get excited when another Mercedes-Benz product becomes available, even if this isn’t a production car—it is a racer. Actually, the DTM AMG Mercedes C-Coupé will succeed the AMG Mercedes C-Class, which is the most successful vehicle in the 27-year history of the DTM (touring car racing), having scored 84 victories in 156 races and five driver’s titles.

Cadillac CTS Coupe

On: Mon, Sep 19, 2011 at 11:29AM | By: Chuck Arehart

Cadillac CTS Coupe test 2

A funny thing about auto shows is that some of what a manufacturer displays as "concept" is obviously going to be built. Such was the case with the Cadillac CTS coupe originally unveiled at the 2008 North American International Auto Show. The CTS coupe on display appeared as if it could have been driven off the floor and into your driveway, a no-brainer to receive a green light from GM management.