AutoGuide News Blog
The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
Dealerships across Colorado are stepping up to help the victims of this summer’s wildfires and recent massacre.
Classic Bentleys, Studebakers, Mustangs and more crowded an auction house this weekend to be sold, but one car stood out among the pack: a late model Chevrolet Impala SS.
Surprising as that might be given the host of exotics it sat with, the Impala is among a special few “Intimidator” editions that have all but slipped from the streets and into collector hands and museum floors. There was also a special purpose behind the Intimidator’s presence: raising money for Sick Kids hospital in Toronto, Canada.
As the car rolled onto stage and bidding began, the auctioneer made it clear that the seller, Jeffrey Seigal (left), agreed to waive the usual 10 percent buyer fee, and that the sale price would also be matched in donation. Although other Intimidator Impalas have sold for as much as $40,000, this particular car went up without reserve — and down for $22,000.
Ted Collins (right), who bought the car, said he frequents auctions though he never specifically comes to buy, more to take his son on fun adventures. “It’s going to be tempting to leave it in the garage,” he said, before admitting that he probably won’t be able to resist driving it.
“It was a good purchase and it’s a good cause,” he said. “Put the two together and everybody wins.”
At this past weekend’s Barrett-Jackson auction, a Shelby GT500 decked out in American flag livery sold — twice, for a combined total of $950,000, with all proceeds going to the Wounded Warriors Family Support charity (WWFS).
The car was purchased first by Ronnie Rains, a Vietnam veteran, for $500,000. Rains immediately donated the car back to the auction to be sold again, saying that he wanted to show his strong personal support for the WWFS charity. The car was then sold again, this time fetching $450,000 from a Florida man.
The auctioned GT500 participated in a cross-country drive to tour 48 states and be covered in signatures from veterans and others who have been affected by war.
The quintessential go-anywhere, do-anything, vehicle, Land Rover is celebrating the production of its one-millionth Land Rover Discovery. In light of the landmark achievement, Land Rover is holding a 50-day expedition and £1 million (GBP) fundraiser to benefit the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, a Global Humanitarian Partner of Land Rover.
Displaying the versatility and capability of Land Rover vehicles, a team set out on a 50 day, 8,000 mile, intercontinental journey from Solihull, Birmingham to Beijing China. In total, the route of the Discovery expedition will hit the following countries: UK, France, Switzerland, Italy, Hungary, Ukraine, Russia, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Kyrgyzstan before ending in China.
Well on their way, a recent update from the Land Rover team documents their journey through Chernobyl, Ukraine, a city that truly tests just how go-anywhere, do-anything, a Land Rover vehicle really is. Ever since the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant suffered a nuclear fallout back in April 1986, the region has since been deserted. Until now, nobody in private vehicles were ever allowed to breach the 30 kilometer exclusion zone surrounding the epicenter of the accident.
Valeriy Zabayaka was a former plant worker and one of the thousands of ‘liquidators’ tasked with clearing the radioactive disaster zone. Now the guide for the Discovery team, Zabayaka explained that before the tragedy, living standards at the Pripyat City of Chernobyl were significantly better than that of the average Soviet city. Facilities and amenities were abundant as shops were well stocked with western goods. Wages were over double the national average. Unfortunately, the loss of reactor 4 changed everything and now Chernobyl is nothing more than an empty shell of its former self.
The Discovery team’s final stop was next to the reactor itself, now under a cover of concrete, steel, lead, and metal sheeting. According to Zabayaka, the city has already been waiting for more than a decade for plans of a better, more permanent, sarcophagus to contain the plant and its tragic history. Unfortunately, legislation has only been extending its deadline.
GALLERY: Land Rover Discovery — Birmingham To Beijing
Land Rover is celebrating the completion of its millionth Discovery SUV today by launching a trip that will see the vehicle travel from its birthplace near Birmingham, U.K., to Beijing.
“This gruelling expedition will be visiting 13 countries and covering 8,000 miles, and it’s a fitting initiative to celebrate the one millionth vehicle,” said Phil Popham, group sales operations director for Jaguar Land Rover (JLR).
The journey will cover 8,000 miles and 13 countries in 50 days, following the path originally mapped for “The First Overland Expedition” in 1955, though that trip ended up diverting to Singapore. Unexpected changes seem less likely this time, given the day-and-night difference between automotive technology in cars today.
Nonetheless, there is an uncertain component aside from unpredictable road conditions: JLR aims to raise £1,000,000 for the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies’ water and sanitation project in Uganda as a part of the trip. That goal represents the most ambitious fundraising target for the company to date.
Travelling on the stated path will not only raise money for charity, but it will also take the team of four drivers through some of the company’s major markets. Visit http://www.ammado.com/community/125893 to make a donation to the campaign.
Popham wasn’t shy about making the trip sound devastatingly difficult, though it’s tough to sympathise with people who get paid to take a globally-publicized road trip in a posh luxury SUV. The send-off wasn’t bad either: Such memorable figures as Bear Grylls of the TV show Man Versus Wild, Sir Ranulph Fiennes and Polar explorer Ben Saunders attended the event among others.
While it’s probably a stretch to call a drive that breaks down to 160 miles per day anything other than leisurely, there’s definitely no harm in a long trip meant to raise money for charity — provided the money is made and there are plenty of snacks.
It’s probably worth mentioning that with four drivers that figure breaks down further to 40 miles per driver, per day. Our own editor-in-chief, Colum Wood, drives approximately the same distance in his daily commute to the AutoGuide office… each way. High ho Land Rover Discovery.
Most of the time when a celebrity has something to do with cars, it means there’s a specialty line being made, like a Funkmaster Flex edition Ford Explorer – ugh! This wasn’t one of those cases. Bieber decided to sign the car’s dashboard in silver pen ink and set it up for sale on Ebay. The goal? Raising money for a good cause.
The cause in question? Well, the young lad wanted to fix up the skate park in his home town of Stratford, Ontario up in Canada. It didn’t look like the car would actually bring in the minimum bid he had hoped for, but at the last minute someone swooped in to scoop the car up, though we don’t know who.
Don’t be surprised if it shows up on an upcoming episode of something like MTV’s My Super Sweet 16 series. There really aren’t too many people willing to drop that much cash on a car that starts at $22,250 aside from a one percenter with a spoiled 15-year-old who’s crushing on the Biebs.
[Source: CTV News]
Starting today, through January 3, 2012 you can feel especially good about buying or leasing a new Subaru.The company kicks off their fourth annual Share the Love event that lasts 46 days and promises to raise as much as $5 million in charitable donations.
The company will donate $250 for every new sold or leased car off their lots to one of the following five charities: American Forests, The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, the Make-A-Wish Foundation, the Meals On Wheels Association of America, or the Special Olympics.
Subaru says they will also give an additional $250,000 to the five charities based on votes collected via Facebook. Each user may vote to allocate one dollar and share the experience with friends to promote more voting.
Their $5 million mark might actually get reached considering the past three events raised almost $15 million in total. Subaru also has more than 600 dealerships across the U.S., which translates into each dealership selling or leasing at least 34 cars before the deadline.
In light of talented racing driver Dan Wheldon’s tragic death, and the family he has left behind, fellow racing driver Graham Rahal first announced that he would auction off the helmet, gloves, and shoes worn during the Las Vegas 300 to raise money to help the Wheldon family through this difficult time.
Following Rahal by example, an outpouring of collective support from athletes, and Eric Gazin of Auction Cause, came together to create the Charity eBay Auction in memory of IZOD IndyCar Series Champion Dan Wheldon. 100 percent of all proceeds from this auction will be donated to the Dan Wheldon Family Trust Fund.
Launched October 24th, each item listed on the Dan Wheldon Memorial Auction will be open for bidding for approximately ten days. A particularly popular item on the list, a NASCAR helmet worn by Jimmie Johnson, is already up to $13,500!
Soon to follow, accomplished racing driver and star from ‘Grey’s Anatomy’, Patrick Dempsey, will auction his Mazda racing suit as well. By following Graham Rahal’s twitter, you can keep track of more upcoming motorsport memorabilia soon to be available at the auction.
Athletes and celebrities are not the only people that can help. Eric Gazin encourages anyone to offer an item to the Dan Wheldon Memorial Auction, with any portion of the eventual selling price donated to the cause at the seller’s discretion.
Direct donations are available via the Dan Wheldon Family Trust fund at the Fifth Third Private Bank, 251 N. Illinois St., Suite 1000, Indianapolis, IN 46204.
September 5th marks the birthday of Freddie Mercury, the legendary front man to the rock and roll band Queen. Having succumbed to AIDS almost twenty years ago, fans, friends and family will gather at the Savoy Hotel on September 5th, 2011 to celebrate what would have been Freddie’s 65th birthday.
In honor of the occasion, Lotus has donated a one-off Evora S for a charity auction with proceeds going to support the HIV AIDS charity fund, Mercury Phoenix Trust. The striking sports car’s color scheme features red and gold racing stripes as well as an interior influenced by one of Freddie Mercury’s stage costumes back in 1986. To top it all off, the Evora will also sport Mercury’s signature on the passenger side of the dashboard.
“We were only too happy to contribute to this fantastic cause,” said Group Lotus Director of Corporate Operations Gino Rosato. “We have created something very special to raise money for Mercury Phoenix Trust and we hope the car goes to a collector who really enjoys it.”
GALLERY: Freddie Mercury Edition Lotus Evora S
The famous ‘Imported from Detroit’ Super Bolw ad staring rapper Eminem featuring the new Chrysler 200 was very successful for the automaker, and Chrysler is hoping to further this with yet another musical tie-in.
Building on this success, the Chrysler brand and Eight Mile Style, a Detroit-based publisher of Eminem compositions, have partnered to release a gospel version of “Lose Yourself”, available now for download on iTunes, and to promote the city of Detroit. Performing the song is Selected of God, the choir featured in the famous Eminem/Chrysler commercial. The proceeds of money raised from the downloadable song will go to benefit three Detroit-based charities including Abayomi Community Development Corporation, The Yunion and Robert S. Shumake Scholarship Foundation. Chrysler has also released a music video of the choir performing the song with both a trailer and full-length video.
Check out both the trailer and music video after the jump!
The barter system is alive and well, it seems, with the offer of a free goat (the animal kind, not the Pontiac kind). But it’s not what you think—on many different levels.
The company in question is Flyin’ Miata, which is well-known in the Miata world for their go-fast products. And if you buy a FMII Hydra turbo kit—good for a cool 265 rwhp—or spend at least $5,000 otherwise, the company will donate a goat to charity Heifer International, which supplies third-world nations with farm animals to ensure that communities there become self-sustaining.
For a small village, a goat can provide food, milk and fertilizer for crops. Goats can survive in extreme conditions and can be sold to provide educational resources, and can provide farmers with offspring to continue the cycle of escaping poverty. It’s not exactly lawn decoration for a Miata owner, though some of these animals are provided to rural families within the United States as well.
And as a fellow Miata owner, if you needed an excuse to hop up your car through the miracle of forced induction—now’s a good excuse. Go fast for charity!
[Source: Flyin' Miata]
The News Of The World scandal rages on, with pressure mounting from Parliament, investigators, and the general public. Now an anonymous executive suggests that car companies who had planned to advertise in the tabloid should donate the money to charity instead.
“If we had advertising booked with the News of the World the advert would have been due to be submitted yesterday,” said the source. “So the question is what would we have done if we had booked space? The problem is car manufacturers will be contractually bound to pay for that space—and even if they pull it they’ll have to pay anyway. So we thought the most popular choice would be to submit an advert for a charity instead. All car manufacturers—in fact all advertisers—should do that.”
Mitsubishi has been the only company that’s taken up this offer, donating their ad stream to UK charity Childline. The carmakers who currently advertise in NotW include Ford, Chevrolet, Hyundai, Vauxhall, Mitsubishi, Suzuki, and Renault—and all the manufacturers contacted have no future advertising planned. There is no word on whether they will be making a donation to charity instead, however.
UPDATE: News Corp. owner Rupert Murdoch has confirmed he will shut down The News of the World over the hacking scandal.