Dodge Roadkill Nights -Tires Smoking on Woodward Ave

ingAutoInformed.com On Dodge Road Kill Nights - Woodward Avenue Street RacingStreet legal racing on Woodward Avenue returns tomorrow via Roadkill Nights Powered by Dodge. Once again, Roadkill Nights has upped the ante this year with a total cash purse of $29,000 – a mere pittance compared to the fines collected over decades in an illegal stop light to stop light “run what you brung” white-smokey burning rubber festival. (Dream Cruise Drag – Roadkill Runs Legally on Woodward Ave)

As part of the overall horsepower burnout, $10,000 will be awarded to the quickest Dodge car. Caveat: it must be powered by a Dodge engine, not a rat motor or mouse motor or God forbid, a Blue Oval mill. Continue reading

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2018 Camaro ZL1 NASCAR Cup Race Car

The Chevrolet 2018 Camaro ZL1 NASCAR Cup Race Car makes its world debut yesterday 10 August 2017 in front of the General Motors Renaissance Center Global Headquarters in Detroit, Michigan. The Camaro ZL1 will make its competition debut next February during Daytona Speedweeks, which kicks off the 2018 NASCAR season.

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CARB fines Railroads for Busting California Drayage Regs

The California Air Resources Board – CARB – reached settlements with Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway Company (BNSF) and Union Pacific Railroad Company (UPRR) to resolve violations of the state’s drayage truck regulation that requires cleanup of trucks servicing the state’s busy ports and intermodal rail yards. Continue reading

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Mercedes-Benz Starts Apprenticeship Program with U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

In keeping with what is a giant problem for the auto industry, Mercedes-Benz USA says it has received approval from the U.S. Department of Labor and Department of Veterans Affairs, including State Approving Agencies, to become what it claims is the first luxury automaker to offer a Registered Apprenticeship Program in four U.S. states, certifying Mercedes-Benz Drive as part of the National Apprenticeship System. Continue reading

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Michigan has Costliest Auto Insurance. Maine Lowest

Maine, Ohio and Idaho all have competitive insurance marketplaces and less expensive car insurance premiums, according to a new study. Michigan was labelled the most expensive state for car insurance for the fourth consecutive year. The lowest Michigan has ever been on the most expensive list is third, back in 2012. It’s a disgrace from a broken, lawyer dominated system. That was the year that Louisiana, who claimed second place this year for most expensive, took the No. 1 spot. Continue reading

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Toyota and Mazda JV to Build Cars in U.S. Trumped?

Toyota Motor Corporation and Mazda Motor Corporation signed an agreement to enter a business and capital alliance, with the stated goal of strengthening a small partnership that begin in March of 2013 and build a joint venture plant in the U.S.

The plant would have an annual production capacity of approximately 300,000 units. Pending approvals and authorization by government agencies, the companies will begin to examine detailed plans with the goal of starting operations in 2021. The plant will require a total investment of approximately $1.6 billion, and will create up to 4,000 jobs. Continue reading

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GM, Ford, FCA Car Sales Decline, Slumping Trucks, Crossovers Can’t “Pickup” Slack

AutoInformed.com on U.S. July Vehicle SalesThe industry trend of customers abandoning car sales in the U.S. continued in July as total industry vehicle sales dipped for the sixth straight month compared to last year, at 17.5 million – a record for the industry. The problem was compounded by soft truck sales, which aren’t high enough to fill the gap. It’s could be the beginning of a huge problem the Detroit Three, which have had trouble selling cars for years. Ford car sales declined 19% for the month. Continue reading

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2017 Honda Clarity Electric Sedan Debuts

AutoInformed.com on Honda Clarity Electric

Range is a limiting factor – 89 miles on a full charge. It’s likely the reason for the closed end lease so the Honda Clarity can be upgraded with a better battery pack and be resold.

Honda today announced the arrival of the 2017 Honda Clarity Electric sedan at a few dealerships in California and Oregon. With an introductory lease price of $269 (plus tax) a month for 36 months, the lease terms include 20,000 miles per year and 24/7 roadside assistance. The lease, which has a federal tax credit built in, requires $1,730 down plus the first month’s lease payment due at signing (not including tax, registration or official fees). In addition, if they apply, California and Oregon customers may qualify for their state’s rebates of $2,500 once they become available. It’s a closed end lease with no purchase option. *

Clarity Electric sedan is powered by a 161-horsepower (120-kilowatt) electric motor rated at 221 lb.-ft. of torque and drawing power from a 25.5-kWh lithium-ion battery pack. The vehicle can be fully charged in just over three hours at 240 volts and when using DC fast charging with the SAE Combined Charging System, it can achieve an 80% charge in just 30 minutes. The Clarity Electric has an EPA fuel economy rating of 126/103/114 MPGe (city/highway/combined) and an EPA range rating of a mere 89 miles on a full charge – a range-limited market no doubt. Continue reading

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Annual CAR MBS Conference Under Way in Changing Industry

AutoInformed.com on Center for Automotitve Research - Management Briefing SeminarsIt’s summer in northern Michigan, a time when people flock there for fun, relaxations such a swimming, sailing and fine dining amid verdant rolling hills. There is, however, a significant number of people who come each year at the beginning August to work, debate and dispute at what is – defensibly – the leading auto industry conference, the Center for Automotive Research – CAR – Management Briefing Seminars, aka MBS, in Traverse City.

MBS consistently delivers an environment for senior auto industry executives to discuss and debate serious issues and emerging trends while nurturing new industry relationships in daily networking sessions. Seminars include pointed sessions on manufacturing, vehicle lightweighting, connected and automated vehicles, advanced powertrains, sales forecasting, purchasing, government policies, and designing for technology. In short, all the major areas automakers and suppliers need to excel at. Continue reading

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Continental, Magna Drive Two Autonomous Cars to CAR Conference

AutoInformed.com on General Motors said in December it will immediately begin testing autonomous vehicles on public roads. GM also said it will manufacture the next generation of its autonomous test vehicles at its Orion Township, MI, assembly plant beginning in early 2017.

General Motors is testing autonomous vehicles on public roads. It will make the next generation of autonomous test vehicles at Orion Township, MI, assembly plant beginning in early 2017.

Two autonomous driving cars traveled ~300 miles before arriving in Traverse City for the CAR Conference as part of an  demonstration by Continental and Magna International. The demonstration started in southeast Michigan to the Center for Automotive Research’s annual Management Briefing Seminars.

The automated driving vehicles – a Cadillac CTS and a Chrysler 300 – crossed into Windsor, Ontario before going north to Sarnia, Ontario and returning into Michigan. The first cross-border demonstration of its kind – much more than a hands free publicity stunt – allowed the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) and the Ontario Ministry of Transportation (MTO) to test autonomous driving technology in a variety of settings.
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Road America SportsCar Showdown this Weekend

Autoinformed.comWith four races remaining in the 2017 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship (IWSC), this weekend’s race at Road America (USA) sees a tough fight in the top GTLM class with Chevrolet leading in the points standings. Three other classes will also be fight for the championship.

The high-speed, 14-turn circuit race will be shown live on FS1 beginning at 2:30 p.m. ET, with additional in-car cameras and IMSA Radio audio on IMSA.com. The entire race also can be streamed live internationally on IMSA.com and domestically on FSGO with FS1 authentication. IMSA.com also will stream Race #2 for the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge at 10:40 a.m. ET. and Race #2 for Lamborghini Super Trofeo at 11:55 a.m. Continue reading

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FCA Certifies 2017 Diesels After EPA, ARB Suit

AutoInformed.com on alleged defeat devices on Chrysler EcoDiesel engines

Not as clean as claimed? Now fixed for 2017. Earlier versions still in question.

FCA US says that it has received a certificate of conformity from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and a conditional executive order from the Air Resources Board (ARB) of the State of California for the production and sale of 2017 model year light-duty Ram 1500 and Jeep Grand Cherokee vehicles equipped with 3-liter diesel engines.

The US Department of Justice (DOJ) for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) filed in May a civil complaint in federal court in Detroit, Michigan, against Fiat Chrysler alleging 104,000 light duty diesel vehicles with 3-liter liter EcoDiesel engines are equipped with software that defeat the emissions controls. The action was wide ranging against FCA US, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V., V.M. Motori S.p.A., and V.M. North America, Inc. Continue reading

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General Motors Closes Deal on Selling Opel/Vauxhall

AutoInformed.com on Opel/Vauxhall sale to PSA Group.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel on a visit to Opel in Rüsselsheim.

General Motors Co. (NYSE:GM) and Groupe PSA (Paris:UG) yesterday announced the close of the sale of GM’s Opel/Vauxhall business to the Groupe PSA. GM claims with some justification that the sale represents a win for all stakeholders – really stockholders potentially –  and is the latest, most significant in a series of actions GM has taken to strengthen its global enterprise and position itself for the future, while immediately improving the company’s financial performance. (General Motors Sells Opel/Vauxhall to PSA Group for €2.2B)

This ends almost 100 years of GM in Europe, leaving only the slow expansion of the Cadillac brand, and the sale – it’s more like a hobby than a business – of niche vehicles, the Chevrolet Camaro and Corvette, both imports, as GM’s only presence in the world’s third largest vehicle market. GM’s Lyft and Maven will eventually appear in Europe, AutoInformed opines. Continue reading

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New Car Buyers Bullish on Self Driving Vehicles. Maybe

AutoInformed on Autonomous VehiclesMore than 52% of new car buyers expect to own at least one self-driving automobile in their household in the next 10 years, according to a Bosch study. The survey reached 1,000 U.S. based new car buyers, aged 18 or older, who have purchased or leased at least one vehicle within the last five model years, and intend to buy or lease a new vehicle again in the future.

A bare majority of consumers accept the idea of owning a self-driving automobile in the next decade, many do not understand the advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS), like automatic emergency braking (AEB), adaptive cruise control, and active safety technologies, such as electronic stability control (ESC), currently available on the market, many of them currently supplied by Bosch. Continue reading

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DENSO to Invest $75.5 Million in Michigan and Ohio

DENSO International America (DIAM ) with headquarters based in Southfield, MI one of its satellite offices located in Dublin, OH started a key round of investments in North American today with approximately $75.5 million to expand. The investment will increase the staff in North American by ~133 employees over the next three years. Continue reading

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