facebook twitter feed
Thursday, 27 December 2012 05:50

Best Looking Cars of All Time

DETROIT (WWJ) - It's time to celebrate the art of the automobile by taking a look back at the top 10 best-looking cars of all time, as ranked by Total Car Score. Unlike clearly defined vehicle specifications such as horsepower, top speed or zero-to-60 acceleration, Total Car Score's "best-looking" list is a highly subjective ranking that can't be conclusively validated. However, the 10 cars featured all boast signature contours that continue to influence the design of today's cars. "Ask 10 people to name the best-looking car of all time and you'll likely get 10 different answers," Karl Brauer, Editor in Chief of Total Car Score, said in a statement. "But I'd suggest these 10 cars would be among the most popular answers given. Furthermore, all 10 of these cars have modern-day successors that clearly trace their appearance back to these timeless designs." Brauer noted that all of the cars on the best-looking list were produced within a 20-year time frame, suggesting a heightened sense of exterior design evolution during this period in the history of the automobile. Read more: http://detroit.cbslocal.com/2012/12/22/total-car-score-ranks-top-10-best-looking-cars-of-all-time/
Wednesday, 26 December 2012 15:43

The Beginning of the End?

The week after Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill that makes driving autonomous cars legal in California, Google's Anthony Levandowski said he expects his company to have them on the market in five years. The Silicon Valley Internet search engine company abruptly retrenched from the statement of its autonomous car chief, as quoted by John McElroy in AutoLine Daily. He was not available for comment to Motor Trend. Whatever Google says, the driverless car is nigh upon us. At a formal demonstration to international press of its latest Advanced Driver Assistance Systems unit technologies in Alzenau, and of its latest interior systems in nearby Babenhausen, automotive supply giant Continental outlined an aggressive agenda for driverless cars. Continental plans to have autonomous assistance available for limited freeway driving and for construction areas by 2015, says senior vice president Ralf Lenninger. It will add low-speed city capability in 2017, followed by two-lane highway and country road driverless car technology about the end of the decade. The company calls this "the car you can't crash," and it will meet the company's goal for a zero-percent accident rate. Continental demonstrated key components of the advancing technology, including 360-degree cameras; adaptive cruise control; emergency brake…
Friday, 21 December 2012 16:48

Toyota New 'Furia' Concept

LOS ANGELES -- Could this be the next Corolla? Toyota Division will show a concept vehicle -- code-named Furia -- at the Detroit auto show in January. Toyota officials declined to give details, other than to say the Furia is a sedan. However, because the Yaris, Camry and Avalon sedans have all been redesigned in the last two years -- and the Corolla is due for a redesign in fall 2013 -- it is likely the Furia will give hints at the design direction for Toyota's compact sedan. A teaser video shows a few close-ups of the headlights, taillights and rear deck of the Furia. Judging from that design language, the Furia has taken many of its cues from the recent Scion FR-S sports coupe. One caveat: While Honda concepts often closely resemble the final production version of the car they preview, rival Toyota tends to be a bit more theoretical in its conceptual design language. So what is displayed onstage at Cobo Hall likely will be dialed down by the time it reaches dealerships. Read more: http://www.autonews.com/article/20121220/OEM04/121229989#ixzz2FhphpJqd
Thursday, 20 December 2012 08:46

GM's Camaro Will Come to Michigan

General Motors plans to move production of the next-generation Chevrolet Camaro to Michigan from Canada. The Camaro, currently made in Oshawa, Ontario, will be built at the Lansing Grand River Assembly Plant in Lansing, Mich., GM said today in a statement. The automaker cited "lower capital investment" and "improved production efficiencies" as reasons for the shift. Moving Camaro duties to the Grand River plant allows GM to consolidate production of the rear-wheel-drive sports car with the rwd Cadillac CTS and ATS. The Camaro was the only rwd vehicle assembled at the Oshawa plant, GM said. A GM spokesman declined to comment further on the move. Efforts to seek comment from the UAW in Lansing and at its international headquarters in Detroit were unsuccessful. The production shift is expected to happen in 2015, and would be for the 2015 or 2016 model year. GM sold 78,554 Camaros in the United States through November, down 4 percent from the same 11 months of 2011, according to the Automotive News Data Center. GM told the Canadian Auto Workers that the decision was made two weeks ago, so the move wasn't influenced by Michigan's new right-to-work law that passed last week, CAW President Ken…
Tuesday, 18 December 2012 17:13

2014 Mercedes-Benz E-class freshens up

Mercedes-Benz has lifted the veil on a facelifted version of the E-class, revealing revised styling, updated engines and a higher level of standard equipment, safety features and hi-tech options. The changes, described as the most significant of any "facelifted" model in the company's long history, are part of efforts to improve the traditional luxury sedan and wagon's competitiveness in the face of stiff German luxury-car opposition. The heavily revised E-class is set to get its first public outing in January at the Detroit auto show, with the first North American deliveries slated to begin in the spring. Pricing has not been announced, but Mercedes officials suggest there won't be much change from today's model. Read more: http://www.autoweek.com/article/20121213/detroit/121219948#ixzz2FQOPbHL0
Monday, 17 December 2012 17:35

Black Boxes For New Cars

The White House Office of Management has approved a request from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to mandate event data recorders, commonly referred to as "black boxes," in 100-percent of new vehicles sold. In the very near future, then, the car you drive may monitor your every action behind the wheel, from speed to steering angle to brake pressure to whether or not you and your front seat passengers are buckled up. If that makes you paranoid, this won't help much: if you drive a newer car, chances are there's already some kind of black box logging your actions, something that most consumers are blissfully unaware of. Today, The Detroit News tells us, 91.6 percent of light-duty autos utilize black boxes, so the latest directive would merely take that to 100 percent. Black boxes in automobiles are really nothing new. General Motors began capturing data as far back as 1990, and event data recorders became standard in GM products during the 1995 model year. Ford uses them, as do Toyota, Tesla and Mazda, but standardization of the data captured won't occur until the 2013 model year. Beginning with 2013 vehicles, the black boxes will measure 15 specific values…
Tuesday, 11 December 2012 15:15

Detroit Auto Show Preview: Honda

Get ready for Honda to offer a small SUV, pegged below the size and price of the CR-V for the U.S. market, sometime in the next several years. Honda Motor Co. put out a brief statement Tuesday saying that an all-new Honda small SUV concept vehicle will make its world debut at the 2013 North American International Auto Show in Detroit on Jan. 14. The statement said the vehicle is "a global concept model combining a sporty and dynamic SUV profile with a spacious, functional interior" but released no other details or information about the small SUV except for a shaded sketch. However it is based on the same platform Honda uses for its Fit subcompact and will be built at a factory under construction in Mexico along with the Fit. Since Honda will first show the car in Detroit as an "urban SUV concept," it's a good bet that the U.S. will be one of its target markets. Honda is trying to increase its sales and market share in the U.S. It is facing tough competition –- especially in the passenger car and crossover market from the Hyundai and Kia brands as well as the domestic nameplates, which have…
Friday, 07 December 2012 16:40

BMW Reveals Concept 4 Series

BMW's has revealed this Concept 4-series Coupe, which finally confirms on one of the car industry's worst-kept secrets: that the two-door 3-series will be become the 4-series and join the 6-series as a two-door variant of a BMW sedan. "The '4' doesn't just mark the start of a new cycle; it marks the start of a model with its own individual character and a stand-alone design," says BMW. The 4-series Concept Coupe will officially debut at the Detroit auto show in January, with the production car set tto appear shortly thereafter, Although billed as a design study, the 4-series concept is understood to be a faithful representation of the production car. It will be officially debuted Only some of the more extreme elements, such as the flamboyant front and rear bumpers and air dams, will be toned down, Autocar reports. These first official pictures show the new two-door to be a muscular and broad-shouldered design draped over a wide-stance platform. BMW has released the key dimensions for the concept, which are expected to be carried over to the production car with very little change. The 4-series concept features a wheelbase that is two inches longer than the "3," is 1.7…
Wednesday, 05 December 2012 16:29

Ford Lincoln Re-Invents Itself

NEW YORK (WWJ) - Ford's Lincoln brand is launching a new campaign to become relevant in the mind of luxury car buyers. With a new MKZ mid-size car hitting the market, and three other new products coming, the company is now running ads connecting Lincon's past with its future. The campaign is the largest in Lincoln's history. "There is a market for main-stream luxury, where you get this fantastic luxury," says Ford CEO Alan Mulally. "With our volume and our technology, we can make it even more affordable. But, its a luxurious vehicle and you get personalized service. I think this is going to be a very big transformation in the industry going forward." In 1990, Lincoln was the best-selling luxury brand in the U.S. In the first ten months of this year, the brand has sold fewer than 69 thousand vehicles, about a fourth of luxury leader BMW. "This is the first of four new Lincolns over the next four years, and building on the ninety years of elegant design inside and out, and technology and innovation." The ad campaign will also include a Super Bowl commercial. Lincoln will use comedian Jimmy Fallon to "curate" ideas solicited on Twitter.…
Monday, 03 December 2012 17:45

Relief At the Pump

DETROIT (WWJ) – Michigan motorists will find a little relief at the pump this week. According to AAA Michigan, the average price of gas has dropped 12.3 cents, and is now averaging just over $3.44 per gallon. However, the current statewide average is still up 14.9 cents over last year. In the metro Detroit area, gas prices have fallen 7.9 cents per gallon in the past week, and were averaging $3.45 per gallon on Sunday. According to the gasoline price website DetroitGasPrices.com, including the change in gas prices in Detroit during the past week, prices on Sunday were 19.0 cents per gallon higher than the same day one year ago and are 5.5 cents per gallon higher than a month ago. The national average has decreased 11.3 cents per gallon during the last month and stands 10.0 cents per gallon higher than this day one year ago. "While the national average continues to fall, we've done the math- the yearly average in 2012 is all but guaranteed to set all time record highs," said GasBuddy.com Senior Petroleum Analyst Patrick DeHaan. "We still stand at $3.63/gal for a yearly average, and gasoline prices would need to average no more than $2.35/gallon…
Thursday, 29 November 2012 17:05

What’s Old Is New At Dodge

LOS ANGELES (WWJ) - With the Dodge Dart off to a good start, the brand is pulling another name from its storied past, the Daytona. "We're gonna build 2500 of them, special edition," says Dodge CEO Reid Bigland. The Daytona will be a variation of the Dodge Charger, with unique styling cues and a powerful 370 horsepower engine. "Very distinct Daytona look," said Bigland. "The Daytona badging on the vehicle. And, of course the Hemi powertrain, as well." There will be four choices of color: Daytona Blue, Bright White, Billet Silver and Pitch Black. When Chrysler decided to bring back the Dodge Dart name, executives said it tested well with would-be customers. Bigland says the same is true for the classic Daytona name. "'It still has a lot of traction, especially for those what are into the muscle cars." Chrysler also confirmed that it will have a new large van—branded as a Ram—that will launch In the third quarter of 2013. It will go by the name of Ram ProMaster. The ProMaster is based on the Fiat Ducato van, which is sold in most of the rest of the world. When Chrysler was owned by Daimler, it briefly badged Mercedes…
Wednesday, 28 November 2012 16:56

Ford To Update Touch Screen

LOS ANGELES, Calif. (WWJ) - Ford Motor Co. will show off an updated, simplified version of its highly criticized "My Ford Touch" connectivity system at the LA Auto Show. The system will have a smaller 6.5 inch screen, and simpler voice commands. "Technology features are important to all of our customers including small car buyers, and MyFord Touch continues to drive up purchase consideration of our vehicles," said Michelle Moody, Ford cross-vehicle marketing manager. "MyFord Touch is appealing to customers, as it consistently ranks among the top 10 purchase considerations with new owners. We're excited to bring it to the small car segment, where it will really help Fiesta stand out from the crowd." The updated system will be in the new Fiesta small car that Ford will unveil Wednesday in Los Angeles. My Ford Touch has been criticized by Consumer Reports, and complaints about the system have caused Ford's quality scores to fall in rankings by both Consumer Reports and JD Power. But Ford is standing by the system, saying it brings younger buyers to the brand. That's why it's important that it be on a vehicle like the Fiesta, which generally appeals to younger buyers. Ford is celebrating…
Monday, 26 November 2012 17:14

Gas Prices Goes Up Again

DETROIT (WWJ) – Seesaw gas prices are up yet again. According to the gasoline price website DetroitGasPrices.com, average retail gas prices in Detroit have risen just over 5 cents per gallon in the past week, and are now averaging $3.54 a gallon in the Motor City. Just a week ago, the website reported that gas prices had fallen 4.2 cents per gallon and were averaging $3.50 per gallon in Detroit. Including the change in gas prices during the past week, prices yesterday were 34.7 cents per gallon higher than the same day one year ago and are 17.3 cents per gallon higher than a month ago. The national average has decreased 14.1 cents per gallon during the last month and stands 11.0 cents per gallon higher than this day one year ago. "While Thanksgiving 2012 is now behind us, the stigma of record high gasoline prices is not," said GasBuddy.com Senior Petroleum Analyst Patrick DeHaan. "Thanksgiving Day 2012 featured the highest ever daily average for the holiday, beating out 2011 by over 10-cents per gallon. The national average may continue to moderate slightly by Christmas, but I'm not expecting significant decreases or increases in the national average in the short…
Friday, 23 November 2012 16:34

Toyota Tacoma On Recall

DETROIT (WWJ) - Toyota has announced a safety recall involving approximately 150,000 Tacoma vehicles originally sold or currently registered in 20 cold climate states, including Michigan. Toyota says the spare tire carrier may not have been sufficiently coated with phosphate. Because of that, the company says, corrosion could cause the spare tire to fall off the vehicle. In addition to Michigan, the 20 cold climate states are: Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Virginia, Vermont, Wisconsin and West Virginia; also, Washington D.C. Owners of vehicles covered by this safety recall will receive an owner notification letter in the mail beginning next month. Toyota says any authorized dealer will perform this recall free of charge. http://detroit.cbslocal.com/2012/11/21/toyota-tacomas-recalled-in-cold-climate-states/
Page 3 of 7