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Dream Cruise Muscles Up on the Fun Factor

Not everything rolling down Woodward Avenue is classic car.

by on Aug.20, 2017

Not a fresh accident on Woodward, but an upside down van driving backwards looking to do yard work. (Photo credit: Brendan Strong)

Annually more than 1 million motor heads, car nuts, nostalgic souls and simple car fans descend upon the Motor City to take part in the Dream Cruise.

The cruise, which features America’s classic muscle cars — and future classics — rumbling up and down Woodward Avenue, which is one of metro Detroit’s primary thoroughfares, for all the enjoy.

We're Cruising!

However, what appears to qualify as a “classic muscle car” is different from person to person. And while that may ruffle the feathers of a few purists, most don’t seem to mind too much taking it all in stride. (more…)

Nine Automakers Sitting Out Frankfurt Motor Show

Companies focusing on smaller shows.

by on Aug.18, 2017

Despite strong attendance at the Frankfurt Motor Show, some automakers are electing to skip the show next month.

Automakers are still looking for ways to get the most bang for their buck. Between new partnerships with suppliers and each other to share costs, saving money is still on the agenda despite relatively healthy sales.

Now comes news that at least nine car companies elected to skip next month’s massive Frankfurt Motor Show.

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Alfa Romeo, Fiat, Jeep, Peugeot, Citroen, DS, Nissan, Infiniti, Mitsubishi and Volvo declined to attend. Volvo’s absence was expected as it announced a while back it wouldn’t be attending shows anymore. However, there are some surprises on the list. (more…)

GM Escapes $1B Stock Handover in Lawuit Settlement

Automaker pays trust's legal fees to fight lawsuits.

by on Aug.17, 2017

General Motors avoided giving up $1 billion in stock by paying its bankruptcy trust to fight lawsuits related to its faulty ignition switches.

General Motors escaped handing over $1 billion in stock by reaching an agreement with the automaker’s bankruptcy trust to litigate hundreds of personal injury cases and a class-action lawsuit related to its faulty ignition switches.

Last week, it appeared that the trust and plaintiffs had reached a $15 million settlement that would have had the trust accepting $10 billion in previously disputed claims, which would have pushed total approved claims in the case past $35 billion.

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The company cried foul in a letter to U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Manhattan, claiming the two sides had engaged in secret talks. (more…)

US Trade Leader Says NAFTA has Failed Americans

Lighthizer pushing for changes Mexico, Canada don't want.

by on Aug.17, 2017

U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, left, talks with Canada's Chrystia Freelander and Mexico's Ildefonso Guajardo, both right.

The United States is not looking to make a few tweaks to the North American Free Trade Agreement, but instead wholesale changes, said U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer in his speech kicking off the negotiations.

While his counterparts from Canada and Mexico offered more conciliatory messages in their opening remarks, Lighthizer doubled down on his contention that the agreement hasn’t brought the same level of economic prosperity to the U.S. as it has Mexico and Canada.

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“(F)or countless Americans, this agreement has failed,” he said during the remarks that were part of the first of what will be several sets of negotiations through the rest of the year to remake the 23-year-old trade pact. (more…)

Feds Sued Over Rear Seat Belt Warning Failure

Transportation Secretary Chao named in lawsuit.

by on Aug.16, 2017

Transportation Sec. Elaine Chao was named in a lawsuit by two advocacy groups claiming federal safety officials failed to enforce a rear seat belt warning mandate.

Federal safety officials are being sued by two non-profit groups over the failure of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration enforce legislation requiring a vehicle’s rear-seat occupants to be warned to buckle their seat belts.

The suit, filed by the Center for Auto Safety and Kids and Cars Inc., claims that the government has been too slow to implement the warnings, which were mandated in 2012 and supposed to take effect in 2015.

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The mandate requires a “regular and salient reminder” (for example: an audible warning) about rear seat safety belts for passengers. (more…)

The Flying DeLorean is Back — For the First Time

Autonomous flying car is set to debut in late 2018.

by on Aug.15, 2017

The DeLorean DR-7 is the latest entry into the flying car segment, or it will be when it arrives in late 2018.

Reminisce about the ’80s and it won’t take long for memories to move to flying DeLoreans, 1.21 jigawatts and hitting 88 mph.

Fast forward a few decades and there is still talk of flying DeLoreans. Only now, they don’t travel through time, but they do fly autonomously. At least, that the goal of DeLorean Aerospace, which is just the latest company to enter the flying car market.

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The company, which was founded in 2012, is run by Paul DeLorean, nephew of the iconic car’s namesake and well-known auto executive John DeLorean. And it’s working what it calls “vertical takeoff and landing personal transports.” (more…)

Traffic Fatalities in US Decline 1 Percent in First Half of 2017

Second half of year typically sees typically numbers rise.

by on Aug.15, 2017

The National Safety Council reports that motor vehicle deaths decline 1% in the first half of 2017.

For the first time in two years, motor vehicle deaths are on the decline, albeit only slightly.

The National Safety Council estimates reveal that traffic fatalities through the first six months of 2017 are down 1% from the same period last year. Totals have steadily risen since the end of 2014, making the organization cautious.

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The NSC notes the increase has been the “steepest estimated two-year increase in motor vehicle deaths since 1964, and it is too early to conclude whether the upward trend is over.” The totals are still 8% higher than the results from the first half of 2015. (more…)

Automakers Wary of Trump’s Plans for NAFTA Talks

President's plans contradict auto industry interests.

by on Aug.14, 2017

Negotiating points outlines by the Trump Administration have U.S. automakers concerned.

Despite continued promises to bring back automotive manufacturing jobs to the U.S. through a renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement, the Trump Administration’s efforts are likely to harm to the auto industry.

The NAFTA talks are nearly set to begin and a few of the major sticking points outlined by U.S. negotiators have auto industry officials wringing their hands over the anticipated negative impact they’ll have.

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In attempt to increase the number of auto jobs, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer wants to strengthen the rules of origin to block more parts from Asia as well as set a U.S.-specific content requirement for vehicles coming into the U.S. from Mexico. (more…)

Turns Out Millennials Can’t Exist Without Their Cars

Study shows half would give up social media for a week before their car.

by on Aug.11, 2017

Millennials can't live without their cars, but aren't prepared for what happens when their car is being repaired after an accident.

For so long it was thought that millennials were content to lives without cars, and now it appears they cannot live without them.

A new study shows that half of millennials would rather give up social media for a week than go without their cars. Additionally, 41% would give up an hour of sleep each day and 39% would skip a meal before giving up their vehicles.

The Last Word!

Enterprise, the rental car company, polled millennials to determine how strongly they felt about the possibility of going without a car for an extended period of time, such as if it were in for repair. What the company discovered is that millennials are just like most folks: they feel they need their vehicles. (more…)

GM Recalls 800K Full-Size Pickups Due to Steering Issue

Company will update software to fix problem.

by on Aug.11, 2017

The 2014 Chevrolet Silverado is being recalled for a potential problem with its electric power steering.

General Motors Co. is recalling 800,000 full size pickups worldwide due to a potential problem with the trucks electric power steering.

The action impacts 690,000 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 and GMC Sierra 1500 trucks in the U.S., the automaker noted. The recall impacts 2014 model year vehicles.

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The trucks could suffer a temporary loss of the power steering, particularly during low-speed turns, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Dealers will reflash the software in the truck to resolve the problem. (more…)