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Posts Tagged ‘joseph szczesny’

CARB Clinging to Clean Car Standards

Group remains committed to ZEV mandates.

by on Mar.27, 2017

The California Air Resources Board reaffirmed its ZEV mandates as a means to avoid returning to the smog-covered haze that used to be Los Angeles.

Officials from the California Air Resources Board stuck to their guns and voted unanimously to reaffirm the state’s clean car standards this afternoon at their hearing in Southern California where the threat of smog has long been a serious health concern.

The board’s vote means that California will maintain existing standards for passenger cars and trucks that will result in lower smog, particulate matter and carbon pollution being emitted from vehicles.

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The impact reaches beyond California because 12 other states also have adopted California’s standards, collectively impacting 113 million U.S. residents and representing over a third of U.S. vehicles. (more…)

March Sales Coming in Like a Lion

Analysts predicting sales increase of more than 2%.

by on Mar.27, 2017

Trucks are still paving the way for strong sales in the U.S. these days. March is expected to see a significant jump in new vehicle sales.

Even with concerns about rising interest rates and downward pressure on used car prices, making leases more expensive, auto makers are expected to post a sales increase for March, analysts said.

The auto industry will see its first year-over-year monthly increase of 2017 as March retail sales are expected to rise 2.4%, according to a forecast developed jointly by J.D. Power and LMC Automotive. Total sales are expected to increase 1.6%. J.D. Power and Kelley Blue Book expected that the seasonally adjusted rate of annual sales will reach 17.3 million units to 17.4 million.

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However, the sales increase will come at a price as incentives were running at a record level of $3,768 per unit, the highest level since the recession of 2009. Incentives as a percentage of manufacturers suggested retail prices reached 10.4% in March, which is also the highest level since 2009 when the topped 11% of MSRP, Power noted. (more…)

New Legislation Attacks Cyber Security

Democratic senators looking to bolster security measures.

by on Mar.24, 2017

Sen. Ed Markey, above, and Sen. Richard Blumenthal introduced new legislation aimed at eliminating cyber attacks on vehicles.

Republicans controlling Congress and the White House have called for a broad reduction in federal regulations, however, two Democratic senators from New England, Sens. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), have introduced bills bolstering cyber security of motor vehicles and aircraft.

“Whether in their cars on the road or in aircraft in the sky, Americans should be protected from cyber attack and violations of their privacy,” said Markey in a joint press release announcing the legislation this week.

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“If hackers access the critical systems of a car or plane, disaster could ensue and our public safety could be compromised.” (more…)

Ally Raises Caution Flag About 2017 Auto Sales

Increase in leasing hurting finance companies.

by on Mar.24, 2017

Ally Financial executives are sounding a warning, suggesting the current sales boom is fading.

As warnings go it wasn’t exactly a call to abandon ship, but it was a reminder that the auto sales boom of recent years is losing steam.

But Ally Financial Inc., which once upon a time was the financial arm of General Motors known as GMAC, has warned investors that its profit might not grow as quickly as it once thought because the demand for new cars is shifting.

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After two consecutive years of record sales, analysts are predicting another big year for auto sales in 2017. But the price that carmakers are paying to maintain that pace is climbing. (more…)

Valmet Building Mercedes Next-Gen Small Cars in Finland

Valmet currently building Mercedes GLC, A-Class already.

by on Mar.23, 2017

Mercedes plans to build its next-gen small car on the same line as the GLC and the A-Class by Valmet Automotive in Finland.

Mercedes-Benz plans to expand its ties to Valmet Automotive, the Finnish company that has built electrified vehicles for companies such as Think and Fisker as well as sports cars for Porsche. It also builds the A-Class and GLC at the plant.

Daimler AG, the parent company of Mercedes-Benz, announced this week that Valmet will produce the next generation of compact cars at its plant in Uusikaupunki, Finland. The Finnish company has been building the other Mercedes vehicles at the site since 2013.

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“We are convinced that the next generation of Mercedes-Benz compact cars continues on its road to success,” said Markus Schäfer, member of the Divisional Board Mercedes-Benz Cars, Production and Supply Chain Management, in a statement. (more…)

Costs of Tougher Fuel Economy Standards Inflated

Report says tougher standard won't cost as much as expected.

by on Mar.22, 2017

A new report shows that the cost of technology that improves fuel economy and emissions is less than predicted by regulators.

A new study by the International Council on Clean Transportation, which reviewed the history of clean air regulations in the United States, the European Union and China, found that regulators have routinely inflated the costs of automotive technology that would benefit the environment.

Last week, the Trump administration announced that it will reopen the review of national fuel-economy standards for model years 2022-25. The report comes as the California Air Resources Board will make a decision, based on its own technical assessment, whether states representing 113 million people will stick with the current program.

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Automakers and other supporters of delaying the 2022-25 standards express concern about the cost associated with achieving tougher fuel economy and emissions standards and the impact on their bottom lines. (more…)

China Epicenter of New Development in Car Industry

Zetsche says push for EVs, size of market make country crucial.

by on Mar.21, 2017

Daimler Chairman Dieter Zetsche said the company plans to build and sell the newly unveiled EQ brand of electric vehicles in China.

China will likely serve as the stage where the auto industry’s future plays out in the years to come, two key executives from Daimler AG told a Beijing Forum organized to discuss the future of the Chinese economy.

“The automotive industry is experiencing fundamental change: connectivity, autonomous driving, sharing and electric mobility. Each of these has the power to turn our entire industry upside down. And I truly believe: China can be ‘the turbo’ of this transformation,” Daimler AG CEO Dieter Zetsche told the forum as he outlined some of the key trends re-shaping the auto industry.

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“Electric mobility, for instance, is developing quickly here. And we are aiming to further contribute to this development by planning to produce our new generation of electric Mercedes-Benz models also in China. We are committed to delivering innovation and believe to have a common target with our partners: a both sustainable and highly fascinating auto industry in China,” Zetsche noted. (more…)

Trump Continues to Threaten Foreign Automakers

President tells crowd that there will be "consequences."

by on Mar.20, 2017

President Donald Trump continues to threaten foreign automakers, including German companies, with a border tax.

President Donald Trump continues to make veiled threats against Germany’s automakers, which are among the most successful in the world, apparently as part of a key tactic in negotiating new and more advantageous trade agreements with European countries.

“Germany has done very well in its trade deals with the U.S., and I give them credit for it,” Trump told a White House press conference. “Virtually any country we do business with — it’s not exactly good for our workers.”

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“The U.S. has been treated unfairly and that’s going to stop,” he told reporters at the White House. During a meeting with representatives of both foreign and domestic car makers in Detroit last week Trump urged them to build more vehicles in the U.S. (more…)

Uber Pushes for Arbitration in Intellectual Property Suit with Waymo

Move keeps sensitive information out of public eye.

by on Mar.17, 2017

Uber CEO Travis Kalanick has his hands full these days, including the latest legal action.

Uber will try and force arbitration rather a face a trial court over charges that it has stolen intellectual property and proprietary technology from Waymo, Alphabet Inc.’s self-driving car subsidiary, which has taken a prominent role in the development of autonomous vehicles.

Arturo Gonzalez, the prominent San Francisco trial lawyer representing Uber, told a federal judge that he planned to file a petition demanding arbitration of Waymo’s claims of trade secrets theft.

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Arbitration, a legal procedure that side steps open court, allows a third party to review the evidence and decide the case rather than a judge. It’s also less drawn out than a trial and usually less expensive but both sides must agree on the person, often a retired judge, who will serve as the arbitrator in the case. (more…)

Marchionne Changes Course, Claims No Interest in VW Tie-Up

However, FCA's CEO did say he would listen to any pitch from VW.

by on Mar.16, 2017

FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne says he's not interested in a merger with Volkswagen.

After preaching for years about the need for a broad consolidation in the global automobile industry, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Sergio Marchionne has reversed course or perhaps gotten cold feet.

Following a meeting with President Donald Trump, Marchionne told reporters that he had no interest in pursuing a possible merger with Volkswagen, the world’s largest automaker and the top automaker in Europe where FCA’s European brands are facing the potential of more intense competition from combination of Opel/Vauxhall and PSA.

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Once the PSA takeover of Opel/Vauxhall is completed later this year, it will be the second-largest carmaker in Europe. (more…)