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.
Each week, car shoppers worldwide tune into AutoGuide‘s videos to help make their purchasing decision easier.
For the past week, our most watched video is our comparison test between the 2014 Audi Q5 TDI and 2014 Mercedes-Benz GLK 250 Bluetec. The battle of the luxury diesel crossovers could interest you if you’re in the market for one. In addition, American SUVs garnered plenty of attention with our 2015 Chevrolet Tahoe review. Lastly, sports car owners are wondering if all the changes to the 2014 MINI Cooper S are worth it.
Watch the videos below and subscribe to the AutoGuide YouTube channel here.
Law enforcement officers put their lives on the line every day; it’s important they have the right tools to do their dangerous jobs. Helping serve those that serve others, Chevrolet just announced a new police-ready version of the 2015 Tahoe SUV.
Which Crossovers and SUVs are the Most Reliable?
The crossover and SUV segment is one of industry’s fastest growing, and if you’re in the market for one, chances are you’ll want to know which ones are the most reliable out there. J.D. Power has compiled data collected from surveying thousands of vehicle owners to determine this year’s list of most reliable new crossovers and SUVs not in the luxury segment. Here they are listed in alphabetical order.
J.D. Power and Associates has released its 2013 Vehicle Dependability Study, listing the top-rated SUVs from their segments.
10. Nissan Murano - 473 Thefts
The National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) has released a list of the top stolen sport utility and crossover vehicles in the United States, compiling data from 2009-2011 model years only. In total, entry-level CUVs were the most stolen with 6,357 thefts while hybrid SUVs were the least with 67 – of course, there aren’t as many hybrid SUVs on the road as there are entry-level CUVs. The information also revealed that California had the most thefts with 3,003 with Texas in second (1,826 thefts) and Florida third (1,784 thefts).
The 10th most stolen SUV/CUV from 2009-2011 model years was the Nissan Murano, with 473 thefts last year. The mid-size crossover from Nissan first hit the market in 2002 as a 2003 model year and was the automaker’s first crossover for the U.S. market. The second-generation Murano began with the 2009 model year and got revised exterior styling that seems to have become a hit with some thieves.
You’ve probably heard of Costco members getting incentives to buy new vehicles at dealers on your local radio. However, one automaker; General Motors is taking things a step further, teaming up with the wholesale giant to sell select Chevy/GMC pickups and SUVs through a number of authorized retailers for a no haggle “preferred price.”
In addition, eligible buyers will also receive a $500 Costco Cash Card for further savings on the price of a new truck. As part of the program, GM will display vehicles at Costco outlets across the country, which according to a company spokesman for the General; Jim Cain, enables the automaker to “reach people in a unique setting outside of a dealership.”
The “preferred” price actually varies from vehicle to vehicle, though according to Cain, will be similar to incentives offered to employees of GM suppliers, who currently receive discounts on new cars and trucks.
Eligible vehicles in the Costco program include the 2011/2012 Chevy Silverado, Tahoe and Surburan as well as the Traverse, plus their GMC equivalents, Sierra; Yukon, Yukon XL and Acadia.
In order to participate, Costco members have to register online with the Costco Auto Program or call a special phone number. They must also complete surveys and redemption forms after purchasing a vehicle in order to receive the $500 Cash Card.
[Source: Automotive News]
GM’s big SUVs harken back to an era of conspicuous consumption, when $2-a gallon gas and a lingering nostalgia of 15-foot-long American cars flooded the industry. But if the Volt is any indicator, the era of big, cheap Suburbans and Tahoes might finally come to an end with next generation trucks.
To meet new fuel economy regulations, General Motors will add a price premium to its line of full-size SUVs. Currently, the Chevrolet Suburban and Tahoe get a combined average of 17-mpg. But new CAFE regulations will force GM to reach a company-wide average of 35.5-mpg by 2016, and there’s no time to waste.
As a result, GM’s next generation of full-size SUVs “will be more expensive to engineer and build because of the need for lighter weight materials,” said Tracy Handler, an analyst at IHS Automotive. “I expect prices to be higher.”
Sales of full-size SUVs have sunk like, well, a full-size SUV into a lake. From a high of over 1 million units in 2003 and 2004, sales of the Suburban, Escalade, Toyota Sequoia, Lincoln Navigator, and others dropped to 372,437 vehicles. There have been prior doubts to whether this would be the last time these squirrel crushing, deer smacking, driving machines would live to see next year, but GM is still committed to introducing them in 2013 as 2014 models: it is investing over $300 million in its Arlington, Texas plant for the next Suburban, Tahoe, GMC Yukon and Cadillac Escalade.
“We have customers who need full-sized SUVs for work and play,” Chevrolet spokesman Mike Albano said. “We will continue to provide a vehicle in that segment.”
[Source: Automotive News]
The latest in a growing list of investments, General Motors has announced a $331 million cash infusion into its Arlington Assembly Plant in Texas.
The plant currently builds GM’s SUV lineup, with models including the Chevrolet Tahoe, Suburban, GMC Yukon and Cadillac Escalade. The funding will go towards new tooling and equipment for the facility and while GM hasn’t said as much, it’s believed the this is in preparation for a new full-sized SUV line, with new versions of the above-mentioned trucks expected to hit the market some time around 2014.
In addition to sprucing up the place, GM has also announced the creation of 110 new positions at the plant, adding to the 2,400 person workforce there now.
“This investment will allow us to continue building award-winning full-size SUVs that offer better fuel efficiency than ever before without sacrificing the features and functionality they’ve come to expect,” GM Manufacturing Manager Larry Zahner said Thursday. “We remain committed to providing customers the utility and capability of our world-class full-size SUVs.”
Part of a major overhaul of its production facilities and models, GM recently announced upgrades to its Detroit-Hamtramck plant and Bowling Green Corvette Factory as part of an investment strategy that will see $2 billion used to revitalize 17 plants.
General Motors will idle their Arlington, Texas plant due to a parts shortage, although details were not given as to what the specific issue was.
The factory builds vehicles like the Chevrolet Tahoe and Cadillac Escalade. A UAW representative told Automotive News that two 10-hour overtime shifts would be cancelled. So far, the standard 10-hour shifts from Monday to Thursday appear unaffected, although the overtime hours have been a constant at the plant for over a year.
A GM spokesman said that the shifts would be “rescheduled” although further details were not provided.
[Source: Automotive News]
General Motors’ T800 series of full-size pickup trucks and SUVs, with specific reference to 1999-03 models of Chevy Silverado, Avalance, Suburban and Tahoe, as well as their GMC counterparts, Sierra and Yukon, have been subjected to an investigation regarding rusted brake lines.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in a filling posted last week, has said it has upgraded its original investigation to an ‘engineering analysis’ covering the affected vehicles, following concerns regarding its preliminary findings.
Said findings included no fewer than 26 separate complaints of brake line corrosion which have resulted in vehicle accidents since the agency first began looking into the problem last year.
GM, in a statement last year, said that even if a brake line rusted through, one of these trucks should still be able to stop safely.
In the course of its investigation, NHTSA initially targeted 6 million vehicles, but later reduced this 1.8 million when it decided that only vehicles being driven in rust belt states (where the roads are salted in winter) are adversely affected.
Said states comprise Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Virginia and Wisconsin, as well as the District of Columbia.
Considering NHTSA’s recent spate of recalls, we have to think an official recall notice is coming soon.
[Source: New York Times]
In a sign that the Cash-for-Clunkers program is working and that car sales are finally starting to turn a corner, General Motors has announced that it is increasing production and adding overtime shifts at several plants.
Shifts will be added at GM’s CAMI plant in Ingersoll, Ontario, Canada and at the Lordstown, Ohio plant. The Lordstown facility is responsible for assembly of the Chevy Cobalt, while the Ingersoll facility is home to the GMC Terrain and the all new 2010 Chevrolet Equinox (pictured above).
The added shifts means General Motors will bring 1,350 employees back on the job.
Earlier this month Gm added overtime shifts at its Arlington, Texas plant where the Cadillac Escalade, Chevrolet Tahoe and GMC Yukon are made.
The total production increase is said to be roughly 60,000 units, a move deemed necessary by General Motors to ensure its dealers have an appropriate number of vehicles on their lots after a surge in sales following the recent Cash-for-Clunkers legislation saw dealer inventories hit their lowest point since 1991.
[Source: Automotive News]