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President Trump Jumps on NAFTA Before Inaugural Speech Ends

Commander-in-chief backing up campaign promise on NAFTA.

by on Jan.20, 2017

President Donald Trump didn't waste any time jumping into governing, issuing a call to renegotiate NAFTA before his inaugural speech ended.

It didn’t take long for President Donald Trump to move from words to actions. As he was delivering his inaugural address, the White House issued statements saying Trump is pulling out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership and would take immediate steps to renegotiate NAFTA.

“With a lifetime of negotiating experience, the President understands how critical it is to put American workers and businesses first when it comes to trade,” the White House said in a release.

Political News!

“With tough and fair agreements, international trade can be used to grow our economy, return millions of jobs to America’s shores and revitalize our nation’s suffering communities.” (more…)

Thirteen Automakers Issue New Round of Takata Airbag Recalls

More than 652,000 vehicles involved in latest action.

by on Jan.19, 2017

Thirteen automakers issued recalls for 652,000 more vehicles with defective Takata airbags.

More than a dozen automakers are engaging in another round of recalls involving faulty Takata airbag inflators impacting more than 652,000 vehicles in the U.S.

The largest recall in U.S. history continued when Audi, Nissan, Jaguar-Land Rover, Subaru, Daimler Vans, Tesla, Mitsubishi, BMW, Ferrari, Mercedes, Mazda, McLaren and Fisker issued recalls for front passenger inflators.

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Takata’s inflators degrade over time and can explode with too much force sending pieces of metal shrapnel flying into the vehicle cabin. More than a dozen people have been killed as a result with hundreds more injured. (more…)

VW Not Horsing Around With Diesel Allegations in Germany

German maker fighting back against recent ruling.

by on Jan.18, 2017

Volkswagen is now dealing with the repercussions of its diesel emissions scandal at home now.

Just as Volkswagen AG appears to be in the final stages of settling its diesel-emissions scandal in the U.S., the automaker is facing a load of trouble in its home country.

A panel of three judges in the German city of Hildesheim ruled that the automaker must take back a Skoda Yeti with the 2.0-liter TDI engine purchased in 2013 and pay the owner more than $28,000 for it.

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Suggesting the emission scandal was a scam and comparing it to another recent high-profile event in which horse meat was used in lasagna, the court said, “VW intentionally committed fraud and can’t defend itself by saying it hasn’t clarified who was responsible for software that allowed the vehicle to cheat on emissions tests,” according to Bloomberg. (more…)

Autonomous Vehicles Could Save US Drivers Billions Annually

Study shows U.S. drivers could save $306 billion.

by on Jan.18, 2017

The development of autonomous vehicles is dependent upon new technology coming to the auto industry.

The ongoing push for autonomous vehicles has largely centered on convenience and safety; however, a new study shows there may a third, very compelling reason: billions of dollars.

According to Global Positioning Specialists, driverless technologies represent a savings of $306 billion annually in lost gross domestic product — just in the United States.

Autonomous News!

Federal safety officials have been campaigning for past several years to expand the use of self-driving technology with a goal of eliminating traffic fatalities. (more…)

Hyundai Next to Roll Out US Investment Plan — $3.1B

Follows GM's $1 billion announcement earlier, and also notes plan isn't Trump influenced.

by on Jan.17, 2017

Hyundai expects to invest in its plant in Montgomery, Alabama, as part of a $3.1 billion, five-year plan.

Announcing investment plans for the United States appears to be the latest trend by automakers with Hyundai Motor Group being the latest announcing plans for $3.1 billion, including a new plant, to be spent in the U.S. during the next five years.

The South Korean company’s move, which represents a 50% increase in the money it drives into the U.S., comes just hours after General Motors outlined $1 billion in new investment in the U.S. expecting to develop as many as 2,000 new jobs.

Global Auto News!

President-elect Donald Trump has been using Twitter to put automakers – and other countries – on notice that if they don’t start building more vehicles in the U.S., he plans to slap their imported vehicles with a 35% tariff. (more…)

Tesla Looking to Set New Solar Record

Model S 60 owners get a price break on upgrade.

by on Jan.16, 2017

Tesla's Gigafactory is expected to be the world's largest lithium-ion production plant.

Tesla’s been a groundbreaking company on many levels since its inception and now the company is looking to set a new benchmark on ground its already broken: the world’s largest solar array on the roof of its under-construction Gigafactory.

The California-based EV maker is planning to create a 70-megawatt rooftop installation of solar panels that will provide the facility with all of its power needs and will, once completed, nearly seven times bigger than the next biggest rooftop array.

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While this may sound like a rather expensive proposition, Tesla’s acquisition of SolarCity, the solar panel manufacturer, will more than offset the costs associated with producing the panels needed to generate the power for the plant. (more…)

Trump Widens Tariff Threat to Canada, Germany

President-elect suggests 35% tariff on German cars, Canada-made autos.

by on Jan.16, 2017

President-elect Donald Trump expanded his 35% tariff threat to Canada and Germany.

After months of threatening American and Japanese automakers with a 35% tariff if they produce vehicles in Mexico and then try to import them for sale in the United States, President-elect Donald Trump broadened the scope of his “plan” to include Canada and Germany.

The incoming Trump administration is suggesting that cars in built in Canada might also face the so-called border tax that the President-elect Trump has claimed he might impose on cars built in Mexico.

Trade News!

Shortly after that, in an interview with the German newspaper Bild, he suggested that German automakers could be subject to the tariff as well. (more…)

US, Euro Investigators Casting Wider Net for Diesel Emissions Cheating

FCA, Renault accused of beating the system.

by on Jan.13, 2017

FCA Chief Executive Sergio Marchionne angrily denied charges that the company cheated to pass diesel emissions tests.

Volkswagen may not be the only company guilty of cheating diesel emissions. If new accusations are to be believed, Fiat Chrysler and Renault may be guilty of cheating the standards in the U.S. and Europe as well.

Officials at the Environmental Protection Agency accused Fiat Chrysler of also using software to beat diesel emissions tests. The charge was flatly denied by the automaker.

The Last Word!

U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Florida) asked the U.S. Federal Trade Commission on Friday to investigate the possibility that Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV deceptively marketed its diesel-powered SUVs and trucks. (more…)

Takata Expected to Pay $1B as Part of Faulty Airbag Settlement

Ford recalls 816K vehicles just one day after Honda's action on 1.29 million.

by on Jan.12, 2017

The 2012 Ford Mustang is part of the latest recall of vehicles equipped with faulty Takata airbags.

Takata Corp. is going to pay $1 billion and plead guilty to fraud as part of a settlement with the U.S. Justice Department, according to reports.

The deal completes the government’s criminal investigation into the Japanese auto supplier’s faulty airbags, which under certain conditions will explode spraying shrapnel into the cabin of the vehicle.

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More than 15 people globally – 11 in the U.S. – have died as a result of the airbags and hundreds have been injured. It is the largest automotive recall in history. (more…)

VW Crawls Closer to Diesel Resolution with $4.3B Settlement

Any deal would preclude authorities arresting employees.

by on Jan.11, 2017

Volkswagen is inching closer to closing the books on its diesel emissions scandal with a $4.3 billion settlement.

Volkswagen AG appears to be one very expensive step closer to winding up its diesel emissions scandal case in the U.S. after agreeing to pay a $4.3 billion settlement for the impact of rigging its diesels to cheat U.S. requirements.

The proposed deal with the U.S. Justice Department and U.S. Customs and Border Protection forces VW to enter a guilty plea regarding “certain U.S. criminal-law provisions.” Also the agreement, which isn’t final yet, forces the automaker to be subject to an independent monitor for the next three years.

Diesel News!

VW officials said the settlement “is still subject to the approval by the management board and the supervisory board of Volkswagen AG.” The Justice Department declined to comment. (more…)