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Lexus Offers Full Look at New ES Before Beijing Debut

Shares the same architecture at new Avalon.

by on Apr.20, 2018

Lexus provided an early look at the new ES ahead of its Beijing debut.

As its debut creeps closer, Lexus elected to reveal an early look at the new ES in advance of its premier next week in Beijing.

Expected to borrow heavily from the Avalon, the first photo reveals a similar design aestetic when it comes to the grille. The front grille on the Avalon is massive and on the ES it sticks to the traditional spindle grille, but it’s much larger than on past editions.

News Now!

The brand offered a new pic and short film of the vehicle and said even less. Read the rest of this entry »

Japanese Surge Reveals Broader Jump in Auto Imports

Rising numbers from Japan, Mexico, Korea, China challenge Trump 

by on Apr.20, 2018

Demand for the latest version of Nissan's Rogue has contributed to an increase in imports from Japan.

When Toyota and Mazda open a new assembly plant in Alabama in 2021, it will become the latest in a growing array of automotive plants Japanese manufacturers have set up in the U.S. since the mid-1980s – yet despite investing billions in their American operations, Japanese manufacturers have also been increasing exports to the U.S. from their home market factories.

The number of Japanese-made vehicles imported into the U.S. rose almost 10% during the first quarter of 2018. And Japan wasn’t alone.  Auto imports, as a whole have actually been on the rise, whether from Korea, Europe or Mexico, the latter country shipping about 7.5% more vehicles to the U.S. in March than the year before – despite Pres. Donald Trump’s high-profile push to bring more auto production back to the States.

Trade News!

“Japan sends us million and millions of cars, and we tax them virtually not at all. And we don’t send so much product because we have trade barriers and lots of other things,” the president complained during a news conference this week while standing alongside Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Read the rest of this entry »

Musk Gets Preliminary Approval for Testing Tunnel in L.A.

Los Angelse City Council must provide a final approval.

by on Apr.20, 2018

Elon Musk's Boring Co. got preliminary approval for a proof of concept tunnel under Los Angeles.

The City of Los Angeles has approved Elon Musk to be more boring, er, to do more boring of tunnels that is.

Actually, Los Angeles City Council’s public works committee approved an environmental review exemption for a tunnel that Musk, through his Boring Co., wants to dig to test his underground transportation system.

Pushing the Envelope!

The committee approved the measure noting it was in favor of any idea that could help alleviate the crippling traffic jams that so often plague the city and surrounding areas. The motion now heads to the full City Council for approval. Read the rest of this entry »

First Drive: 2018 Chevrolet Colorado Redline

Flexibility, looks, power all in one midsize truck package.

by on Apr.20, 2018

The Chevrolet Colorado Redline is one of several variants to the brand's highly successful midsize truck.

While pickup trucks share some of generic similarities, the stylistic differences are always critical and one of the trend setters since it first appeared has been the Chevrolet Colorado.

The Colorado seems to be a perfect size for working in urban spaces since it’s relatively easy to maneuver into urban or suburban parking spaces. It also has a spacious interior and looks handsome either sitting at the curb or out in traffic.

Reviews You Can Use!

Chevrolet has also smoothed out the ride by beefing up the suspension and improved the steering and brakes on the truck so it’s easier and more enjoyable to drive even if you are traveling a good distance. Read the rest of this entry »

GM Adds eBay CEO to Board of Directors

Company updates $16.5 billion line of credit.

by on Apr.20, 2018

Devin Wenig, eBay CEO, has been recommended to joined the General Motors Board of Directors.

General Motors has reached out to Silicon Valley to obtain a new recruit for the company’s board of directors while also adding to its lines of credit.

The election of eBay CEO Devin Wenig to the board’s slate of nominees will bring GM’s Board of Directors to 11 members, 10 of whom are non-employee directors. Wenig will stand for election at GM’s Annual Meeting of Shareholders on June 12, 2018.

Industry News!

“Devin brings significant expertise in technology, global operations and strategic planning to our board,” said GM Chairman and CEO Mary Barra.  Read the rest of this entry »

Mercedes-Benz Kicks Off Production of A-Class

New compact car to built in Hungary as well as Germany.

by on Apr.20, 2018

Dieter Zetsche introduces the new Mercedes-Benz A-Class wagon and sedan in Amsterdam.

During the last few years, Mercedes-Benz has followed a dual strategy, promoting its high-end luxury cars while expanding into the compact segments as it overtakes key rivals such as BMW and Audi.

Mercedes is now building the new A-Class at the Mercedes-Benz plant in Rastatt, some 60 miles from the headquarters of its parent company, Daimler AG, in Stuttgart, Germany. The A-Class is also scheduled to roll off the assembly line at the Mercedes-Benz plant Kecskemét, Hungary, in just a few weeks.

Product News!

“Mercedes-Benz Cars starts an unprecedented ramp-up cascade with the A-Class. In our global production network, we can ramp-up the production of our vehicles in proven top quality and supply the global market even faster. Using modern industry 4.0 technologies our plants are becoming even more flexible and efficient,” said Markus Schäfer, member of the Divisional Board of Mercedes-Benz Cars, Production & Supply Chain. Read the rest of this entry »

Senate Strikes Down Rule Protecting Against Discriminatory Lending

House expected to pass Senate measure for Trump to approve.

by on Apr.19, 2018

The National Auto Dealers Association, led by Chairman Wes Lutz, applauded the reversal of CFPB guidance over potentially discriminatory lending practices.

The U.S. House of Representatives is expected to take up a measure passed by the Senate on Wednesday that wiped out guidance from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau designed to eliminate lenders from discriminating against auto buyers based on race or national origin.

The guidance, which was offered in 2013 by the Obama Administration, was considered controversial at the time and faced fierce opposition from Republicans as well as banks, lenders and finance companies.

Industry News!

The Senate asked the General Accounting Office to era to review whether or not the guidance, which was aimed at preventing auto lenders from charging borrowers higher rates based on factors such as race or national origin, should have been subject to Congressional review. Read the rest of this entry »

Tesla Going Round the Clock on Model 3 Production

EV maker looks to up Model 3 build rate to 6K weekly.

by on Apr.19, 2018

Tesla CEO Elon Musk is looking to make the Fremont, California plant a 24/7 operation to meet a new Model 3 production goal of 6,000 units weekly.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk is borrowing from a famous ‘50s rock ‘n’ roll ditty in order to get Model 3 production levels back on track: they’re going to work around the clock.

Musk ordered a weeklong shut down of the company’s plant in Fremont, California, to resolve once and for all the production bottlenecks the facility was experiencing related to Tesla’s first mass-market vehicle, the Model 3.

Product News!

The company’s founder, who has taken to sleeping on the plant floor regularly, said one of the big problems was the plant was too automated. “Humans are underrated,” he said. Read the rest of this entry »

Walmart Set to Add Super Fast-Chargers in 34 States

Chargers will deliver up to 200 miles in 10 minutes.

by on Apr.19, 2018

The new Walmart chargers will be capable of boosting range by as much as 20 miles a minute.

Walmart, the world’s largest retailer could soon operate one of the nation’s larger vehicle charging networks.

The Arkansas-based company is partnering up with Electrify America to set up 100 fast-charger stations at stores in 34 states by mid-2019. That’s part of 2,000 chargers Electrify America aims to have in place by then at 500 stations across the U.S.

Electrifying!

“Along with providing our customers with an enhanced shopping experience through added convenience, this initiative also allows us to contribute to the expansion of our nation’s EV charging station infrastructure,” said Mark Vanderhelm, Vice President of Energy for Walmart, Inc.

Read the rest of this entry »

Daimler AG May Supply Engines for Volvo Cars

Move comes days after Volvo chairman talks about partnerships.

by on Apr.19, 2018

Volvo may source engines for some of its vehicles from Daimler AG in the future.

Volvo may source engines from Daimler AG, raising the spectre of Mercedes-Benz and the Swedish-Chinese automaker forming some sort of official partnership in the near future.

The revelation comes mere weeks after Geely founder Li Shufu spent more than $9 billion to acquire a 9.69% stake in Daimler AG, and days after he said that partnerships between companies were critical to future growth. He also noted that companies that don’t team up are likely to be gobbled up.

News Now!

Further than supplying engines, Manager Magazin in Germany reported the partnership could extend beyond that into a potential ownership stake in Volvo Cars of “a couple percent.” Read the rest of this entry »