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Posts Tagged ‘auto news’

Newest IIHS Test Stymies Automakers

Passenger-side small overlap test revealing new shortcomings.

by on Jun.24, 2016

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety plans to implement a new version of its small overlap test: a passenger-side iteration.

Just as automakers were making progress on the latest crash tests in the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s rankings, the organization has developed a new one and automakers look like they’re going to struggle.

The IIHS is mulling the possibility of adding a new front crash test. The new one is similar to one that automakers have already struggled to deal with, the small overlap crash.

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Cars are run into a barrier at 40 miles per hour with all of the impact coming on the driver’s side instead of striking it dead on. The concept is to test a vehicle’s ability to withstand impact with a pole or a tree, instead of a head-on collision with another vehicle or even a wall. (more…)

All-New Porsche Panamera Pics Leak out

2017 model gets lighter platform, new, more streamlined body.

by on Jun.24, 2016

A leaked pic of the 2017 Porsche Panamera.

Porsche has been dropping lots of hints as it prepares to formally unveil the newly redesigned Panamera next week. But it turns out you don’t have to wait for that online unveiling or the official public debut of the coup-like sports sedan at the Paris Motor Show later this year.

Along with the teaser images from Porsche, three grainy but quite revealing new pics wound up on Instagram and we’re offering readers a longer look.

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Porsche has never been shy about taking risks, whether introducing its first SUV, the Cayenne, or following with a distinctive, albeit controversial sports car sedan. The original Panamera was a true Porsche in terms of driving dynamics, but generated plenty of controversy over its bubble-back rear end.

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Jeep Electrified – SUV Maker Adding EVs, Plug-Ins

Battery-based Jeeps “under active development.”

by on Jun.24, 2016

The Jeep Renegade could be one of the first models electrified, a plug in the Chinese market.

Today’s battery-based vehicles tend to be small sedans, coupes and hatchbacks. But that’s beginning to change with high-end products like the Tesla Model S and, more recently, the Model X.

Tesla will soon have some challengers in the battery-electric SUV market including Audi, set to debut an all-electric ute in 2018. And Jeep is getting ready to weigh in, as well, according to brand boss Michael Manley.

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While Fiat Chrysler’s SUV division isn’t ready to release specific plans, Manley told TheDetroitBureau.com that new battery-based products are “under active development,” and other company sources indicate they aren’t very far from launch.

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Dodge Bringing Drag Racing to Woodward Dream Cruise

Racers vying for $19,000 in prize money.

by on Jun.24, 2016

More than 12,000 folks jammed the Silverdome parking lot watch day-long street racing. Now they'll see it on a real street: Woodward Avenue.

Every August the Detroit suburbs along Woodward Avenue roar to life with the sounds and smells of muscle cars, punctuated with the occasional squeal of smoking tires, which was illegal … until now.

Fiat Chrysler is teaming up with the bloggers at Roadkill for a night of “flashlight” street racing on Aug. 19, for the second edition of “Roadkill Nights Powered by Dodge.” Last year’s event gave the winner the vaunted powerplant for the Hellcat line of vehicles.

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The inaugural event kicked off last year in the parking lot of the Silverdome, the former home of the Detroit Lions, and drew more than 12,000 people. It now moves to a larger location called the M1 Concourse in downtown Pontiac and – with the blessing of local governmental agencies – it includes actual street racing with a cash purse of $19,000. (more…)

Brexit Vote Results Worries Global Automakers

Results could plunge EU auto industry back into recession.

by on Jun.24, 2016

Rue Brittania? The vote to exit the European Union could have a major impact on automakers.

The much anticipated vote on Brexit, which will now lead to Great Britain’s departure from the European Union, is causing widespread worry in financial and business circles around the world. And among those fearing the impact are key global automakers like Toyota, General Motors and Britain’s own Jaguar Land Rover.

Calling it “the big unknown,” one industry official warned that automakers will have to give serious thought to future trade and investments, among other things. The possibility that the Brexit vote could trigger other independence movements is adding to the worries, according to financial and political analysts.

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“All hell will break loose,” said Joe Eberhardt, the CEO of Jaguar Land Rover’s North American operations. “First of all it will have a short-term impact on the currency. My bigger concern is long term. Right away all the exporting companies in the UK will be facing tariffs because they are not part of the negotiated EU trade agreement. It would not be good for us.”

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Jeep Climbing Up to Another Record Sales Year

Top exec suggests new SUV smaller than Renegade may be coming.

by on Jun.24, 2016

Jeep CEO Mike Manley believes there is room at both ends of the Jeep portfolio for new products.

The Jeep brand is rocketing towards another sales record this year and it also looking for new worlds to conquer.

Mike Manley, president of chief executive officer in charge of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V.’s Jeep brand, said during a session with reporters at the FCA’s Chelsea Proving Ground that he believes there is ample room in the market for a B-Class-size Jeep smaller than the Renegade, which is now the smallest vehicle in the Jeep model line.

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“I have a strong feeling a small Jeep below Renegade would do well outside of (North America),” said Manley, who has been responsible for pushing the Jeep brand into new market in Europe, Asia and now South America. (more…)

Volkswagen Preparing to Pay $10B Settlement

Maker talking with government about details of plan.

by on Jun.23, 2016

Volkswagen is preparing to pay $10 billion as part of a settlement for its diesel-emissions cheating scandal.

Volkswagen Group will pay $10 billion as part of a settlement, including government fines and as much as $7,000 in compensation for owners of vehicles that have the now infamous diesel emissions cheat device.

According to multiple reports, the deal will be filed in federal court early next week, and follows the confirmation by the German automaker in April that it had reached a deal with U.S. and California regulators as well as a class-action group of owners of 500,000 2.0-liter diesels.

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The deal included options to repair the vehicle or to sell them back to VW. The details of the repair plan have not been revealed, but it’s possible that some of the vehicles may not be fixable, according to Bloomberg News. (more…)

Acura NSX EV Prototype Takes Aim at Pikes Peak

All-electric powered racer making historic run.

by on Jun.23, 2016

The Acura NSX EV concept will make the Pikes Peak run using four electric motors: only.

Acura is eyeing a run up Pikes Peak when the annual hill climb commences in the coming weeks. And what better car to do so than the new NSX supercar? How about an Acura NSX prototype that adds a fourth motor and will run entirely on battery power?

In recent years, a number of battery-electric vehicles have plugged into the annual Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, including entries from Honda, Nissan and Mitsubishi. The new NSX is seen as a particularly promising entrant because of its advanced battery powertrain which uses its electric motors not only for propulsion but also to enhance steering.

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“We’ve been tuning the car for several weeks at Pikes and have advanced its performance significantly,” said Tetsuya Yamano, who piloted last year’s Honda CR-Z prototype up the 14,114-foot tall mountain and who will now drive the NSX. “We’re honored to be running at Pikes in this historical, anniversary year – an event respected by racing fans all over the world.” (more…)

Fiat Chrysler Sending Out Fix for Faulty eShifters on Recalled Jeep, Sedan

Jeep investigating possible link to death of Star Trek actor Yelchin.

by on Jun.23, 2016

Jeep had been hoping to gain momentum with the Grand Cherokee's appearance in the new film, Independence Day Resurgence.

A top official at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles said the carmaker wants to investigate the weekend accident that took the life of actor Anton Yelchin, best known for his role in the Star Trek movie series. He was killed when his Jeep Grand Cherokee unexpectedly pinned him against a gate at his home, apparently leading to asphyxia.

The 2015 sport-utility vehicle was one of 1.1 million FCA vehicles recalled earlier this year to fix an electronic shifter system that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration System called “unintuitive,” citing numerous complaints from owners who said they could not figure out what gear they were in. The automaker had issued a warning to owners but had not begun repairs at the time Yelchin was killed.

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“We’re waiting to be able to start our own investigation,” said Michael Manley, the president and chief executive of the Jeep brand, during a media roundtable at FCA’s proving grounds an hour outside Detroit on Thursday. “Obviously, we would like our own people to go over the vehicle.”

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GM’s Fuel-Cell Tech May Soon Power Advanced Navy Project

Hydrogen power seen as key to long-range unmanned underwater vehicles.

by on Jun.23, 2016

A prototype Navy unmanned underwater vehicle could soon use a GM fuel-cell system.

Technology some see as the key to the future for the auto industry could also play a significant role for the U.S. military.

General Motors is teaming up with the U.S. Navy in the effort to develop a new generation of unmanned undersea vehicles that would rely on hydrogen fuel-cell technology to operate independently for as long as 70 days at a time. The technology would replace the more limited battery-drive systems currently in use in so-called UUVs, according to Navy officials.

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“If you want long endurance you really need fuel cells,” said Karen Swider-Lyons, head of the Alternative Energy Section at the Naval Research Laboratory.

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