Each week TheDetroitBureau.com reports on the biggest news and events about new vehicles, car reviews, and automotive trends and people each week. And then we put it all into our weekly the Headlight News podcast. The roundup includes news, features, reviews and more.
New vehicle sales are expected to drop at least 20% in April despite demand for new vehicle being strong, according to J.D. Power. Sales results have been in the red each month of 2022 as inventory levels remain low, including April where they were at less than 1 million in the U.S.
Some of the other stories you need to know about include:
- General Motors and Ford reported Q1 earnings. GM’s results were down a bit from 2021, but still profitable and exceeded analysts expectations. However, Ford reported a $3.1 billion loss, which was attributable to a $5.4 billion loss in the value of its investment in Rivian. Adjusted for that, Ford was $2.3 billion in the black;
- Tesla recalled about 48,000 Model 3 Performance sedans due to problems with the speedometer going out when the car is in track mode. The EV maker’s recalled 1.4 million vehicles in the last year;
- Ford kicked off production of saleable versions of its all-electric F-150 Lightning full-size pickup at the Rouge Electric Vehicle Center just outside Detroit. CEO Jim Farley also revealed plans tot build a second all-electric pickup at its BlueOval City complex in Tennessee once its complete. It’s widely expected to be a version of the Ford Ranger;
- Dodge brand chief Tim Kuniskis revealed plans to build a second SUV for the brand. The new model will be a hybrid and share a platform with the Alfa Romeo Tonale; and,
- Acura formally brought back its fan favorite Integra.
Executive Editor Joe Szczesny notes GM and Ford posted lower than expected earnings. While Ford’s loss came largely due to the paper charge it took for a loss in value on its Rivian investment, the two companies also struggled with other issues like paying more for materials and transportation. Despite these issues, both pledged to stay the course with their electrification efforts, confirmed by the debut of the Cadillac Lyriq EV nine months early and the ongoing production of the Ford F-150 Lightning.
Mazda used to be the company famous for Zoom-zoom, but after a week in the 2022 CX-5, Managing Editor Michael Strong was more impressed by the room-room. While many complain about the lack of differentiation in the exterior styling of crossovers, the CX-5 is unique enough to easily pick it out of a busy mall parking lot on a Saturday. It also offers plenty of interior room — even for bigger guys — plus very comfortable and stylish leather heated seats front and back. While the technology could use some improving to make it easier to use, it wasn’t unusable. Just as importantly, it’s a spirited driver capable of easily handling the demands of daily traffic. Mazda’s always offered good bang for the buck and the CX-5 carries on that tradition.
Looking ahead to this week, Managing Editor Michael Strong notes that while last week was about numbers and this week’s going to be as well, albeit different numbers: sales as well as earnings. Stellantis will report its Q1 results following GM and Ford last week. Also April sales, which are expected to be down, come in the first part of the week.
Examining this week in automotive history Executive Editor Larry Printz notes in 1931 Ferdinand Porsche established Porsche GmbHKG in Stuttgart, Germany. Yes. THAT Porsche. In 1953 Kaiser Automotive makes the decision to buy Willys Automotive, extending the life of Kaiser by more than a decade.
Find out more the industry’s history and more by listening to TheDetroitBureau’s latest edition of the Headlight News podcast by clicking here. And look for a new episode every Monday!