A fire at a Toyota assembly plant in Japan temporarily halted production at a facility that assembles the Prius, Camry and Scion tC. The fire broke out around 10 A.M. but was put out by now. Toyota reports that no production equipment was damaged, but the fire did affect the factory’s ceiling. An investigation is being… Continue Reading...
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While speaking to Motor Trend, Fiat USA head Laura Soave told the magazine that in addition to new variants of the Fiat 500, there will be a new subcompact car arriving sometime around 2013, with a focus on the needs of the United States market. Soave did not specify what body styles would be offered,… Continue Reading...
Ford of Europe CEO Stephen T. Odell announced a “groundbreaking” new vehicle set to debut at the Geneva Auto Show at the beginning of March, but gave no details as to the nature of the car. Some have speculated that the car could be an larger version of the Fiesta, dubbed the B-Max, that would… Continue Reading...
The Toyota Matrix has always been a bit of a non-starter in the marketplace, but that’s not stopping Toyota from launching an all new updated version at the Chicago Auto Show. Just like the updated 2011 Corolla, the changes are essentially all cosmetic. The same 1.8L and 2.4L powerplants remain in place, as does the… Continue Reading...
The best-selling car in Japan is about to change as government subsidies on hybrid cars has lead to a drop off in sales of the Toyota Prius. Analysts expect the Honda Fit to take the top spot. Prius sales began to dip in September after the government subsidy program ended, but Fit sales remained strong, buttressed by the introduction… Continue Reading...
Volkswagen‘s newest Jetta was designed to be a volume leader, selling for about $15,000. But Volkswagen loyalists, who previously loved the Jetta for its premium feel and sporty character, have decried what they see as a cheapening of their beloved compact sedan, and Volkswagen seems to be listening. After driving a European market Jetta, with… Continue Reading...
Honda‘s previous Civic launches have seen the base models get the star-treatment right out of the gate, with performance and eco variants following later on. But this time will be different, as Honda plans to launch the regular Civic, Civic Si, Civic Hybrid and a natural gas powered Civic within weeks of each other. The… Continue Reading...
Images leaked on the internet purport to show a new version of the Honda Jazz (sold as the Fit in our markets) that looks somewhat like a stretched-in-all-directions version of the current car. The tall-wagon/”people-mover” segment is a major one in much of the world, and the new car, which may be sold as the… Continue Reading...
Lancia’s version of the Chrysler 200, likely dubbed the Flavia, will debut at the Geneva Auto Show in March. While the idea of a Lancia-badged Chrysler is unpalatable to many enthusiasts, the fact that Chrysler has decided use the much vilified 200 will surely make it the automotive equivalent of the Antichrist. Fiat CEO Sergio… Continue Reading...
You may have never heard of Guangzhou, China, but with nearly 12 million people, the industrial metropolis is a major player in the Chinese auto market. Making its debut at the show is one of China’s most anticipated new cars, the MG3 hatchback and MG6 sedan. Although Chinese cars are a laughing stock in much… Continue Reading...
Not one to let its long-time rival capitalize on every niche, Mercedes-Benz is apparently working on a small city car to rival BMW’s MegaCity project. Although only sketches and clay models exist, a possible synergy with the Smart brand could exist, especially in light of the brand’s recent foray into electric vehicles. The vehicle’s styling… Continue Reading...
143,8003 Honda Fit hatchbacks from the model years 2007 and 2008 are being recalled in North America due to a defect that could cause the low beam headlights to stop working. Plating on the vehicle’s headlight connector has been identified as the culprit, with the automaker stating that it “can become warn after repeated use… Continue Reading...
Mazda‘s diminutive minivan, the Mazda5, is the latest car to fall victim to the recall machine, this time a faulty fuel pump being the culprit. Water that remains in the fuel pump may corrode the electrical connectors for the electrical harness. Should the part fail, the engine may stall and be unable to restart, which… Continue Reading...
For all the hype surrounding Ford‘s Fiesta subcompact, which is capable of hitting 40 mpg, it looks like subcompacts, especially those than can hit the vaunted number, aren’t selling all that well in the USA. Even though gas prices will almost certainly hit $3 a gallon, customers are still gravitating towards compact cars, according to… Continue Reading...
Despite being hailed as the vehicle that would motorize a billion-strong economic powerhouse, the Tata Nano has turned out to be a spectacular flop, with November sales totalling just 509 units, from a peak of 9,000 units in July. For comparison, Mercedes-Benz cars, far beyond the reach of a majority of India’s population, regularly sells… Continue Reading...
Honda has given its European market Jazz (also known as the Fit to us North Americans) a mild refresh, and confirmed availability of the Jazz Hybrid that debuted at the 2010 Paris Auto Show. A front end re-style drops the drag co-efficient to 0.33, and the 1.2L and 1.4L powerplants get minor reductions in CO2… Continue Reading...
Chevrolet‘s Cruze Eco compact sedan has returned 28 mpg in the city and 42 mpg on the highway, allowing it to capture the top spot in its segment for fuel economy. Using the new 1.4T engine that displaces 138 horsepower, the Cruze Eco also has a few aerodynamic tricks up its sleeve, including a front… Continue Reading...
After bringing you a preview of the Ford Fiesta SEMA exhibit, we now bring you pictures of Ford’s newest compact in the flesh, looking quite a bit different from the Fiestas you might see at college campuses or 16th birthday celebrations across the country. For the Fiesta’s SEMA debut, Ford enlisted the services of a… Continue Reading...
Honda has made some improvements to the stop-start system on their Insight hybrid car, allowing drivers to keep the engine off for up to 3 times as long as previous years. Insights before 2011 could keep the engine stopped for up to 30 seconds, but new improvements for this coming model year allow for the… Continue Reading...
Chevrolet will debut their first television commercial for their Volt electric car during Game 1 of the World Series on Wednesday. The ad will tout the Volt’s ability to go farther than other electric vehicles by using its gasoline-engine range extender. The range issue is a major concern for many potential EV customers, and Chevrolet… Continue Reading...
Chevrolet‘s next Aveo will see more bodystyles beyond the traditional hatchback, with a crossover and a sedan among them. A sedan model will be essential for the U.S. market, where hatchbacks are slowly gaining acceptance, but have been a traditionally tough sell. The Aveo sedan will likely debut at the Detroit Auto Show in January,… Continue Reading...
The folks over at Left Lane News have spied an undisguised Hyundai Accent after it was caught at a well-known hot weather testing location by the spies at Brenda Priddy & Co. The Accent gets some differentiating styling cues from the Korean market Accent (known as the Verna over there) and, with the American car… Continue Reading...
Mazda proudly announced that their upcoming Japanese market Mazda2, set to bow in the second half of 2011, will get an astonishing 70 mpg without any hybrid technology, making it the most fuel efficient gasoline car on the road. Using an all new family of chassis, engines and gearboxes, Mazda’s SKYACTIV system is designed to… Continue Reading...
While only a small percentage of buyers actually opt for a manual transmission, offering one usually indicates that a company seriously cares about how their products perform. The Chevrolet Cruze, with it’s 1.4L turbo engine, has all the right stuff to be a fun-to-drive compact, but the sole transmission choice, a 6 speed automatic, wasn’t… Continue Reading...