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August 2010 Archives

August 2, 2010

Ford Completes the Sale of Volvo to Geely for $1.8b

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Ford has officially sold Volvo to Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Company Limited (Geely) for $1.8 billion.

"Volvo is an excellent brand with a strong product line, and it has returned to profits after a successful restructuring. We are confident Volvo has a solid future under Geely's ownership," said Alan Mulally, Ford's president and CEO. "At the same time, the sale of Volvo will allow us to sharpen our focus on the Ford brand around the world and continue to deliver on our One Ford plan serving our customers with the very best cars and trucks in the world."

Under the agreement, Ford has not retained any ownership of Volvo, but will continue to supply Volvo with powertrains, stampings and other vehicle components for differing periods of time.

Continue reading "Ford Completes the Sale of Volvo to Geely for $1.8b" »

August 3, 2010

2011 Ford F-Series 6.7L Power Stroke Now Puts out 800 lb-ft and 400 HP

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Ford's 6.7L Power Stroke turbocharged diesel engine is getting an upgrade with an extra 10 horsepower and 65 lb-ft of torque, which brings the final numbers to 400 horsepower and a massive 800 lb-ft. Those numbers are enough to put the Super Duty pickup at the top of the class, narrowly beating GM's 6.6L Duramax.

In case you bought a 2011 Super Duty diesel early this year and you feel shafted by the fact that it now has more power, Ford is offering a free 30-minute software upgrade. For the next 12 months buyers who bought the Super Duty diesel before the power upgrades can bring their pickups into their dealership.

"We want to take care of our loyal, F-Series Super Duty pickup owners who supported us when we debuted our all-new Ford-designed, Ford-engineered and Ford-built Power Stroke earlier this year and reward them by offering them the same best-in-class torque, horsepower and fuel economy our new customers are receiving right now," said Barb Samardzich, Ford Motor Company's vice president of powertrain engineering.

Continue reading "2011 Ford F-Series 6.7L Power Stroke Now Puts out 800 lb-ft and 400 HP" »

Chevy Dealer in California Asks for $20k over MSRP for Volt

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It's pretty common for some dealers to try to tack on a premium for models that are in high demand, but $20k? GM officially announced the pricing for the Volt last week, so researchers from Edmunds decided to inquire about getting one of the first Volts. At a lease rate of $350 a month with only $2,500 due at signing, who wouldn't want

One of the researchers emailed a California dealer to lease the Volt and here is the shocking reply:

Hello *****

Thank you for your online request, as you know the Volt is going to be a very limited production vehicle for the first 2-3 years. Demand is going to far exceed supply for this vehicle, initially our asking price for the Volt is going to be MSRP plus $20,000, we are expecting only receive 9 Volts all of next year.

I will keep you in my customer base for when the Volt comes out and I will contact you with any information as I receive it. We are taking orders right now for the Volt, if you would like more information, please let me know and I will be more than happy to help you. Thank you.

***** *****, Internet Specialist
******* Chevrolet
********, CA

It's not known if this reply was sent before the dealer received word that GM is increasing production of the Volt 50 percent, to 45,000 units.

In addition to the $41,000 base price, GM also announced a lease rate of $350 a month with only $2,500 due at signing. So even if a dealer is trying to take on an insane premium, why wouldn't you just lease it.

Continue reading "Chevy Dealer in California Asks for $20k over MSRP for Volt" »

All-New 2011 Hyundai Elantra to Arrive in the US by the End of the Year

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Hyundai's all-new Elanta aka Avante is officially on sale now in South Korea. The Avante debuted at the Busan show in Korea earlier this year with styling that is reminiscent of its larger brother, the Sonata.

The Avante is powered by a 1.6L 138-hp four-cylinder that is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. Hyundai hasn't released official details on the 2011 Elantra other than stating that it will be on sale in the US by the end of the year.

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August 4, 2010

2011 Land Rover LR2/ Freelander 2 Unveiled with FWD

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Land Rover has unveiled the new 2011 LR2/ Freelander 2, which is now available in a more fuel efficient front-wheel-drive version. The new front wheel drive model will be the most fuel efficient Land Rover ever produced in large part due to the fact that it is also mated to a 2.2L turbocharged diesel engine. As of right now Land Rover has no plans to bring the front-wheel-drive version to the US or even a diesel version of its smallest model.

"The new Freelander 2 eD4 moves Land Rover into the hugely popular and fiercely contested two wheel-drive SUV market," said Land Rover managing director Phil Popham. "The European market for two-wheel drive SUVs represents 23 percent of the segment and we intend to compete strongly here.

"A 2WD option is just one way in which we are developing our vehicles' efficiency whilst adding to the Land Rover range and expanding our appeal to a broader group of customers. We will continue to make the 'world's finest all-terrain vehicles' for those customers who require 4WD but will also now offer an alternative."

Continue reading "2011 Land Rover LR2/ Freelander 2 Unveiled with FWD" »

Honda Reportedly Builds More Cars in the US than Japan...First Time Ever

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Yes, Honda is a Japanese automaker, but that doesn't mean that all of its production is based in Japan. Honda has had factories in the US for years and according to The Detroit News, Honda produced more cars in the US than Japan in the second quarter of this year. Honda built 236,819 vehicles in the US compared to 236,559 in Japan. Although its a very small difference it may signify a growing trend.

"In the long term, there are more growth opportunities in the United States than there are in Japan," said analyst Jesse Toprak at TrueCar.com in Santa Monica, Calif.

"There's not much growth in Japan, where there's a population decline. In the United States, sales can only get better."


Continue reading "Honda Reportedly Builds More Cars in the US than Japan...First Time Ever" »

2011 Nissan Quest Unveiled as Elgrand in Japan

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Nissan has yet to officially unveil the all-new 2011 Quest minivan that is set to debut here by the end of the year, but we have our first look at the Quest thanks to the Elgrand's debut in Japan. The JDM-spec Elgrand has been revealed and it looks very close to the teaser shots that Nissan has released of the new Quest.

Although the Elgrand is very close to what we can expect for the next Quest, expect the front and rear fascias to be slightly tweaked based on what we've seen from the teaser photos. The Elgrand is available with either a 3.5L V6 or a 2.5L four-cylinder. There is also an optional AWD system

Continue reading "2011 Nissan Quest Unveiled as Elgrand in Japan" »

August 5, 2010

Mid-Engined Corvette Reportedly in the Works

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It's been rumored that GM has been working on a mid-engined Corvette and now according to Autocar, its been confirmed.

According to a Saab engineer, Saab's engineers had developed a double-clutch transmission for a mid-engined version of the Corvette when Saab was still part of GM. The source also revealed that the double-clutch transmission was designed to handle up to 590 lb-ft. of torque, which is only slightly less than the output of today's ZR-1.

Originally it was thought that the mid-engined Corvette was dropped due to the economic downturn in 2008, but now it looks like it is back on and should be ready within the next five years.

GM executives are also looking at a downsized turbocharged V6 engine for the next Corvette.

Continue reading "Mid-Engined Corvette Reportedly in the Works" »

August 9, 2010

Spied: 2012 BMW M5 Gets More Naked

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BMW has yet to officially unveil the next-gen M5, but we've seen several spy photos of the most powerful 5 Series. The newest photos show the sedan wearing even less camouflage.

Head over to 5post to see more of the photos.

Continue reading "Spied: 2012 BMW M5 Gets More Naked" »

Honda Recalls 383,000 Vehicles Due to Roll Away Risk

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Honda has announced the recall of 197,000 Accord, 117,000 Civic and 69,000 Element 2003-2004 model year vehicles in the US to fix the ignition interlock feature. Honda has received complaints that the ignition interlock has been failing. The ignition interlock mechanism can become damaged or worn during normal use resulting in the possibility of the ignition key being removed when the shift lever is not in Park. If the vehicle is not in park and the parking brake is not set, the vehicle could roll away, leading to a possible crash.

Honda will begin notifying owners in September 2010.

Continue reading "Honda Recalls 383,000 Vehicles Due to Roll Away Risk" »

August 10, 2010

2011 Ford Harley-Davidson F-150 Gets 411-HP 6.2L V8

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Ford is continuing its partnership with Harley-Davidson and has unveiled the 2011 Harley-Davidson F-150. The partnership has already produced nine F-150 models as well as s six Super Duty F-250 and F-350 models.

The exterior of the Harley-Davidson F-150 features a front fascia with a six-bar-shaped billet-style satin chrome grille and "Harley-Davidson" satin chrome badging. It also features a standard, fully integrated deployable running board that gives the truck a lowered appearance. 22-inch Euroflange wheels are standard and buyers have a choice between either Tuxedo Black and Ingot Silver exterior paint colors.

Inside the interior trim panels are covered in Tuxedo Black paint while the door scuff plate and console lid also carry the engine-turned finish. It comes standard with a 4.2-inch LCD screen, second-row heated seats, power moonroof and a rear view camera.

The exciting news under the hood is that the Harley-Davidson F-150 is powered by the same 6.2L V8 as the F-150 SVT Raptor. It puts out 411-hp and 434 lb-ft. of torque.

"This engine has tons of torque and already has been proven in the field with both the F-150 SVT Raptor and Super Duty," said Mike Harrison, V8 engine program manager. "The exhaust for the Ford Harley-Davidson edition has been specially tuned to feature a throaty V8 rumble customers will love."

Continue reading "2011 Ford Harley-Davidson F-150 Gets 411-HP 6.2L V8" »

August 11, 2010

BMW to Produce Gran Coupe in 2012

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BMW unveiled the Gran Coupe concept at the Beijing Auto Show in April and now according to BMW's development chief Klaus Draeger, BMW is going to build the concept.

The production version of the Gran Coupe is going to go head to head with other luxury four-door coupes such as the Mercedes-Benz CLS and Porsche Panamera. The model will be positioned close to the BMW 6 Series in both technology and pricing.

The Gran Coupe will launch in 2012, after the debut of the 6 Series coupe next year.

Continue reading "BMW to Produce Gran Coupe in 2012" »

KBB Announces Ford Most Considered Brand and Hyundai Hits the Top 5

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Kelley Blue Book has announced the results of its latest Market Intelligence Brand Watch study, which contains the five most-considered auto brands. For Q2 2010 Ford remains on top, but the big news is that Hyundai has made a significant jump into the top five, pushing Nissan out.

"According to the Q2 2010 Brand Watch Study, over the past quarter Hyundai consideration has surged nearly six percentage points in the non-luxury coupe/sedan/hatchback segment, now garnering 29 percent of the total consideration among shoppers of this segment and bested only by Honda (45 percent), Toyota (42 percent) and Ford (38 percent)," kbb said in a statement.

Ford held the number one spot followed by Toyota, Chevy, Honda and then Hyundai.

Continue reading "KBB Announces Ford Most Considered Brand and Hyundai Hits the Top 5" »

August 12, 2010

2011 Nissan Juke Starts at $18,960

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Nissan has announced the pricing for the 2011 Nissan Juke, which will go on sale in the US in October 2010. The base Juke S CVT FWD starts at $18,960. According to Nissan the Juke combines the best attirbutes of a sports car, such as a sporty driving position and powerful engine with the best aspects of an SUV.

The Juke will be available in eight models, all of which are powerd by a 1.6L direct injection turbocharged engine that puts out 188 horsepower and 177 lb-ft. of torque. The engine can be mated to either a CVT or a 6-speed manual transmission. The Juke is available with either FWD or a torque vectoring AWD system that splits torque up to 50:50 between the front and rear wheels.

Continue reading "2011 Nissan Juke Starts at $18,960" »

2011 Ford F-150 Gets New Engines Including V6 EcoBoost

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Ford's EcoBoost engines are slowly making it into the engine bays of all of its models. Ford has just announced the engine lineup for the 2011 F-150. For 2011 the F-150 is getting four new engines, a 3.7-liter V6, 5.0-liter and 6.2-liter V8, and the twin-turbocharged EcoBoost 3.5-liter. All four engines are mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission.

"Our new engine lineup allows greater flexibility for customers to select the powertrain choice that best suits their needs," said Barb Samardzich, vice president of Powertrain Engineering. "We are in the midst of a powertrain revolution, with 30 new powertrains over the next two years, and our loyal F-150 customers are the next ones to benefit."

At launch the 300-hp 3.7L V6 and 360-hp 5.0L V8 will be available followed by a version of the 6.2L V8 that is available in the 2011 Ford F-Series Super Duty. A 3.5L EcoBoost engine specifically tuned for the F-150 will be available in early 2011. Once the 3.5L EcoBoost joins the lineup the the 2011 F-150 will have up to 20 percent better fuel economy compared with the outgoing 2010 F-150.

Continue reading "2011 Ford F-150 Gets New Engines Including V6 EcoBoost" »

GM Announces New CEO, Dan Akerson...Ed Whitacre Steps Down on 9/1

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GM has announced that its current CEO, Ed Whitacre is going to step down on September 1, 2010 and that his title of Chairman of the Board will terminate at the end of 2010.

Whitacre is going to be replaced by Dan Akerson, who has served on the GM board of directors since July 2009.

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"My goal in coming to General Motors was to help restore profitability, build a strong market position, and position this iconic company for success," said Whitacre. "We are clearly on that path. A strong foundation is in place and I am comfortable with the timing of my decision."

"There are remarkable opportunities ahead for the new GM, and I am honored to lead the company through this next chapter," said Akerson. "Ed Whitacre established a foundation upon which we will continue building a great automobile company."

Continue reading "GM Announces New CEO, Dan Akerson...Ed Whitacre Steps Down on 9/1" »

Infiniti Debuts Infiniti Performance Line with 348-HP IPL G Coupe

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Up until now, Infiniti has lacked a performance line to go against the best from BMW's M division and Mercedes' AMG models. Infiniti has just announced the first vehicle from its new, Infiniti Performance Line, the 2011 Infiniti Performance Line G Coupe.

"IPL was conceived to create a new premium performance envelope, going beyond equipment upgrades to accelerate the very soul of Infiniti's Inspired Performance," said Infiniti Vice President Ben Poore. "IPL brings all the elements together, styling harmonized with performance, exhaust note with acceleration feel, ride comfort and confident handling. It's the perfect formula for unmatched driving exhilaration."

The IPL Infiniti G Coupe builds upon the G37 Coupe and on the outside it gets a dramatic front and rear bumper. fascia design, sculpted side sills, rear spoiler and chrome exhaust tips. It also gets 19-inch IPL 7-spoke graphite-finish wheels. It is only offered in two colors: Graphite Shadow and Malbec Black.

Inside there are two available color treatments: Graphite and Monaco Red.

Under the hood is what matters most and the IPL G Coupe is powered by the 3.7L V6, which now puts out 348 horsepower, 18 more than the non-IPL G Coupe. The engine can either be mated to a six-speed manual or seven-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters.

"When you drive the IPL G Coupe, the first thing you notice is the surge in sound and acceleration feel. The inspiring swell of sound is in complete harmony with the acceleration feel as engine speed increases," said Poore. "The sound is clean and inspiring, adding to the fun-to-drive sensation provided by the 348 horsepower under the hood."

Continue reading "Infiniti Debuts Infiniti Performance Line with 348-HP IPL G Coupe" »

August 13, 2010

2011 Infiniti G25 Sedan Starts at $30,950

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Infiniti is expanding the G lineup this fall with the introduction of the G25 sedan. The G25 joins the G37 sedan and will be powered by a 2.5L V6 that puts out 218 horsepower and 187 lb-ft. of torque and is mated to a standard seven-speed automatic. The new entry-level sedan starts at $30,950.

"With the new G25 Sedan, we're broadening the appeal of the G Line with a model designed to provide an additional choice for buyers looking for a true luxury sedan, but who might not need the higher levels of performance provided by our larger engine-equipped G37 models," said Infiniti Vice President Ben Poore, speaking at a media event at the 60th annual Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance. "The G25 is positioned in the heart of the luxury sport sedan market, allowing us to bring Infiniti's Inspired Performance to a wider selection of buyers."

The G25 sedan is available in both rear-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive. Three models will be offered: G25 Sedan, G25 Sedan Journey and G25x Sedan AWD.

Continue reading "2011 Infiniti G25 Sedan Starts at $30,950" »

The Boss is Back! Ford Unveils the 2012 Mustang Boss 302

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Mustang fans just got exciting news this morning. Ford has announced the return of the Mustang Boss 302 for the 2012 model year.

"The decision to build a modern Boss was not entered into lightly," said Derrick Kuzak, group vice president, Global Product Development. "The entire team at Ford felt the time was right and with the right ingredients, the world-class 2011 Mustang could support a successful, race-bred, worthy successor to the original Boss 302. For us that meant a production Mustang that could top one of the world's best - the 2010 BMW M3 - in lap times at Laguna Seca. We met our expectations."

The 2012 Mustang Boss 302 starts with the Mustang GT, but gets a race-inspired clutch, adjustable suspension, short-show shifter, improved brakes and most importantly an upgraded version of the 5.0L V8. The 5.0L V8 now puts out 440-hp and 380 b-ft. of torque thanks to a new intake and revised camshafts.

In addition to the upgrades under the hood, Ford has included some subtle changes on the exterior to set the Mustang Boss apart. The Mustang Boss will either have a black or white roof panel, coordinated to the color of the side C-stripe. Available exterior colors are Competition Orange, Performance White, Kona Blue Metallic, Yellow Blaze Tri-Coat Metallic and Race Red.

The front of the Mustang Boss gets a unique fascia and grille that is highlighted by the blocked-off fog lamp openings and aggressive lower splitter, a version of the design used on the Boss 302R race car.

The interior gets a unique Boss steering wheel that is covered completely in Alcantara suede. The standard seats are trimmed in cloth with a suede-like center insert, but Recaro bucket seats are optional. A dark metallic instrument panel finish, gauge cluster and door panel trim also differentiate Boss from the standard Mustang. Hopefully you will enjoy the added sound from the engine and exhaust as well, since eleven pounds of sound-deadening material has also been removed.

Continue reading "The Boss is Back! Ford Unveils the 2012 Mustang Boss 302" »

August 16, 2010

Dodge Officially Keeps the Durango Nameplate for 2011

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Dodge has officially killed the rumors that it's new SUV would ditch the Durango name and be renamed Magnum. The automaker has released teaser images of the new 2011 Durango which has a lot in common with the new Jeep Grand Cherokee.

The 2011 Durango is expected to be powered by the 3.6L Pentasta V6 and the 5.7L Hemi V8 that are also available in the Jeep.

Expect more details soon...

Continue reading "Dodge Officially Keeps the Durango Nameplate for 2011" »

August 17, 2010

Video: Mini Kicks off 2011 Countryman Ad Campaign

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Mini has kicked off its ad campaign for its new crossover, the four-door Countryman.

The Mini Countryman will be powered by either a 120-hp 1.6L or a 180-hp turbocharged 1.6L. Both engines can be mated to either a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission. All-wheel-drive is only available on the 180-hp Cooper S Countryman.

Continue reading "Video: Mini Kicks off 2011 Countryman Ad Campaign" »

2011 Cadillac CTS and Infiniti M Named IIHS Top Safety Picks

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The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has announced that the 2011 Cadillac CTS and Infiniti M have earned its top rating of good in roof strength tests. The new roof strength tests, test how well a vehicle will protect its passengers in a rollover crash.

The CTS and Infiniti M beat out the Lexus GS and Audi A6, both of which only received acceptable ratings and the Acura RL, which only received a marginal rating.

The Cadillac CTS and Infiniti M received the institute's Top Safety Pick Award after receiving a good rating in all four of its safety tests.

Continue reading "2011 Cadillac CTS and Infiniti M Named IIHS Top Safety Picks" »

2011 Mercedes Benz CLS Photos Leaked

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As seems to all ways happen now, photos of the 2011 Mercedes CLS have leaked out before the four-door coupe's official unveiling.

The guys over at eMercedesBenz managed to grab the first official press shots of the new CLS, which borrows styling cues from the Shooting Break concept. According to eMercedesBenz, when the 2011 CLS launches it will be available with either a 3.5L V6 or a twin-turbocharged 4.6-liter V8 with around 430 horsepower and 516 lb-ft. of torque. The AMG version will be powered by the new twin-turbocharged 5.5L V8.

Expect more details and official photos soon...

Continue reading "2011 Mercedes Benz CLS Photos Leaked" »

August 18, 2010

2012 Saab 9-4X to Debut at LA Auto Show in November

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According to the LA Auto Show's Twitter page, Saab has confirmed that the 2012 Saab 9-4X crossover will debut at this year's show in November.

The Saab 9-4X shares its Theta platform with the Cadillac SRX. It's expected to be released sometime in the spring of 2011 as a 2012 model.

Continue reading "2012 Saab 9-4X to Debut at LA Auto Show in November" »

Porsche Announces New Panamera Personalization Program that Adds 40-HP

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Porsche has announced a new personalization program (Porsche Personalization Program) for its Panamera sedan.

The new program allows for owners to tweak the styling and performance of the Panamera. The top of the line, Panamera Turbo can be outfitted with a new Powerkit package that uses two new turbochargers and revised engine management to produce 40 more horsepower and 37 lb-ft. of torque, bringing the final totals to 540-hp and 553 lb-ft. The Powerkit package also includes Porsche's Sport Chrono Turbo Package and if the car is driven in Sport Plus mode the torque output is increased to 590 lb-ft. In Sport Plus mode the Panamera Turbo reaches 0-62 mph in 3.9 seconds. The Powerkit package adds another $21,730 to the price of the Panamera Turbo.

The Sport Design Package is available on all Panameras and includes a unique, exterior color painted front fascia with widened black air intake grilles, separate side skirts and the standard, exterior color rear underbody apron with diffuser and fins. It adds an additional $4,950.

Continue reading "Porsche Announces New Panamera Personalization Program that Adds 40-HP" »

August 19, 2010

2011 Jeep Wrangler Gets a New Interior

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For 2011 the Jeep Wrangler is getting a much needed interior update in addition to a body-color removable hardtop on the Sahara model.

The interior of the Wrangler gets a new instrument panel, steering wheel and an updated center stack that is easier to operate. The Wrangler also gets new storage areas and larger rear windows. Power heated mirrors are also available.

Production of the 2011 Wrangler began earlier this week.

Continue reading "2011 Jeep Wrangler Gets a New Interior" »

August 20, 2010

Kia Rondo is Dead in the US

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It looks like the Kia Rondo is no more in the US. If you go to Kia's US website, the MPV is missing from the lineup.

Obviously the death of the Rondo is most likely due to disappointing sales. The sales of the Rondo in 2009 was only 14,206 units, compared to 28,645 in 2008. The Rondo was Kia's third slowest selling model behind the Borrego SUV and the Amanti sedan.

Apparently there are still some Rondos at dealers if you still want one...

Continue reading "Kia Rondo is Dead in the US" »

Video: 2012 BMW M5 Drifting at the Nurburgring

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Here's the latest spy video of the 2012 BMW M5 hitting the famous Nurburgring in Germany.

The 2012 M5 is expected in the second half of 2011. It's rumored to be powered by the an upgraded version of the turbocharged 4.4L V8 that powers the X5M and X6M. The official numbers haven't been released, but it's expected to have around 600 horsepower and 530 lb-ft. of torque.

Continue reading "Video: 2012 BMW M5 Drifting at the Nurburgring" »

2011 Kia Sportage Named IIHS Top Safety Pick

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The 2011 Kia Sportage is a far better compact crossover than the model it replaced. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has just named the new Sportage a Top Safety Pick because it earned its highest safety rating in frontal, side, rear and rollover crash tests.

"The Kia brand is committed to providing consumers with the highest levels of passenger safety by providing a comprehensive list of cutting-edge technologies and features for increased crash protection," said Michael Sprague, vice president, marketing & communications, Kia Motors America (KMA). "The 2011 Sportage's sleek and modern appearance continues Kia's design-led transformation while staying true to the company's core philosophy of providing consumers with exciting, fun-to-drive vehicles with high levels of value, quality and safety."

The 2011 Kia Sportage starts at $18,295 and is powered by a 176-hp 2.4L four-cylinder.

Continue reading "2011 Kia Sportage Named IIHS Top Safety Pick" »

August 23, 2010

2012 Mercedes-Benz CLS Officially Unveiled

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Last week leaked shots of the 2012 Mercedes-Benz CLS appeared online. It was our first look at the new "four-door coupe." Mercedes-Benz has now officially unveiled the 2012 CLS. The CLS was the first official four-door coupe that lead to other automakers jumping into the segment (VW CC, BMW Gran Coupe, etc).

"The new CLS points the way forward for the future perceptible de-sign idiom of Mercedes-Benz", explains Professor Gorden Wagener, head of de-sign at Mercedes-Benz. "At the same time it takes its inspiration from the great tradition of stylish, refined sportiness which has always been a feature of Mercedes coup├ęs."

The new CLS builds upon the successful first generation (long hood, tightly-styled frame-less side windows and a dynamic roof sweeping back at an angle towards the rear.) The new headlights on the CLS are full LED headlights, which has a total of 71 LED's. The taillights also feature LEDs.

There is no word yet on the powertrains that we will get in the US. But it is expected that the CLS will get a 3.5L V6 as the base engine and CLS550 models will be powered by the twin-turbo 4.6L V8. The CLS AMG will also eventually be offered.

The 2012 CLS is going to be officially unveiled at the Paris Motor Show in early October with sales starting in mid-2011.

Continue reading "2012 Mercedes-Benz CLS Officially Unveiled" »

August 24, 2010

2011 Nissan Murano Gets a Refresh

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Nissan has released the official photos of the refreshed 2011 Murano. The 2011 Murano gets a refreshed grille, restyled bumper, new taillights and new 18-inch wheels. Inside there is a new white meter color, new center stack colors and added equipment.

For 2011 there are also two new models, the SV FWD and SV AWD, which brings the total to eight models. The Murano comes standard with a 260-hp 3.5L V6 that is mated to a CVT.

"With its contemporary exterior design, 'mobile suite' interior, advanced technology and refined, premium driving feel, Murano stands out as a modern crossover SUV like no other," said Al Castignetti, vice president and general manager, Nissan Division, Nissan North America, Inc. "With the enhancements for 2011, there are even more reasons for consumers to put Murano on the top of their shopping lists."

The 2011 Nissan Murano will be available this October.

Continue reading "2011 Nissan Murano Gets a Refresh" »

August 25, 2010

Hyundai Genesis, Genesis Coupe and Equus to get All-Wheel-Drive

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Hyundai's American CEO, John Krafcik recently confirmed that its upcoming Equus sedan as well as the Genesis and Genesis coupe will be getting all-wheel-drive in the near future.

The move to make all-wheel-drive optional on its two luxury sedans is to make them more competitive with other luxury brands like BMW and Mercedes-Benz. All-wheel-drive on the Genesis coupe will give it something that isn't offered on the Ford Mustang or Chevy Camaro.

Hyundai's newest flagship, the Equus will hit dealerships later this year. It will be powered by the 4.6L Tau V8 with up to 385 horsepower. Pricing is expected somewhere between $50,000 and $60,000.

Continue reading "Hyundai Genesis, Genesis Coupe and Equus to get All-Wheel-Drive" »

Range Rover Evoque to Get Ford's 2.0L EcoBoost

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It's rumored that Range Rover's upcoming Evoque is going to be offered with Ford's new 200-hp 2.0L EcoBoost four-cylinder engine. According to Autocar prototypes of the baby Range Rover are currently being tested on N├╝rburgring with the Ford engine. Of course land Rover will not confirm the rumors.

The 2.0L EcoBoost is the same engine that is also going to be offered in the 2011 Ford Explorer, but with 240-hp instead of 200-hp.

The Range Rover Evoque will be unveiled at the Paris Motor Show

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August 26, 2010

Paris 10' Preview: Mazda2 Gets a Facelift

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The Mazda2 is finally being offered in the US and now Mazda has released the first official photos of the European model that is getting a facelift.

The refreshed Mazda2 will appear at the 2010 Paris Motor Show with a new face, upgraded interior and powertrain and a new automatic version.

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2011 Toyota Highlander Unveiled in Moscow

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Toyota has unveiled the 2011 Highlander which is getting a midlife facelift. The 2011 Highlander gets a new face, which includes a new hood, fenders, grille and headlights. Out back there are new taillights and a revised bumper.

The Highlander pictured here is going to debut at this year's Moscow Motor Show. Toyota has yet to confirm that these changes will also make it on the US version, but you can expect them to.

Stay tuned...

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Toyota Announces Recall of 1.1 Million Corolla and Matrix Models

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Toyota has announced a voluntary recall of 1.13 million 2005-2008 Corolla and Matrix vehicles to address and issue with the 1.8L four-cylinder engine. According to Toyota some of the engine control modules have been improperly manufactured.

The engine could stall in effected vehicles due to cracks that could develop on the ECM's circuit board. There have been at least three accidents related to this issue.

Beginning next month, Toyota will replace the ECM on the recalled vehicles.

Don't forget that the Pontiac Vibe was built on the same platform as the Corolla/ Matrix. GM has also issued a recall of the 2005-2008 model year Vibes.

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August 31, 2010

Nissan Murano Convertible to be Named CrossCabriolet

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Yup I guess it's more than just a rumor. Nissan is set to debut a convertible version of the Nissan Murano at the 2010 LA Auto Show later this year. It has now been confirmed that the drop top version of the Murano crossover will be named the Murano CrossCabriolet. The Murano CrossCabriolet will be the world's first AWD crossover convertible.

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Paris 10' Preview: Mazda Shinari Concept Debuts Mazda's new "Kodo" Design Language

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With the departure of Mazda's design chief Laurens van den Acker comes the end of Mazda's Nagare design language. Mazda's new designer Ikuo Maeda is bringing a new design theme to the brand named "Kodo". Kodo, which is Japanese for soul of motion will debut on the Shinari concept at the upcoming Paris Motor Show.

The four-door Shinari concept shows off the new styling direction for Mazda, which is ditching the smiley face look of the current Mazda lineup.

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