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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.
It isn’t the wort way to find last place, but then again there isn’t really a good way to do that either.
Since 1948, those who have wanted to travel by roads that didn’t actually exist, chose to do so with a Land Rover.
It might not have been the only proper off-road vehicle on the market, but its ability to cross terrain made it an ideal choice for the adventurer crowd.
Americans have been able to buy Land Rover, and the more luxurious Range Rover products for 25 years now. To celebrate this milestone, Land Rover has released a little film, showing their past, their present, and a glimpse of their future.
So if you are a fan of these British SUV’s, you would enjoy the film after the break.
Despite the fact that it’s available in Canada, BMW‘s U.S. arm has said that due to high demand in Europe and a relatively week U.S. Dollar/Euro exchange rate, it has decided to postpone introduction of the X1 south of the 49th Parallel.
The baby crossover was initially slated to arrive at U.S. dealers sometime in 2010, though now the earliest it will likely surface here is sometime in 2013 after it receives a mid-life freshening.
“Global demand for the X1 is still extremely strong in markets where our volume potential is high for this type of vehicle,” said a BMW executive. “Here in the US, the X3 is and likely will continue to be our volume (crossover).”
So, for those U.S. motorists who want their own X1 before anybody else, in the meantime, there’s only one solution; head North.
GALLERY: BMW X1
[Source: Inside Line]
Swedish car firm Saab has been in the news much more than even they would have liked to in recent months, mostly because the company seems to be on the verge of bankruptcy on a weekly basis.
But while its CEO Victor Muller is looking for the money train to keep the company on track, Saab itself is preparing to launch the 9-5 Sport Combi in the US-market.
According to a pre-launch brochure that has made its way onto the internet, the Sport Combi will come very well equipped. The standard list of equipment include panoramic sunroof, heated seats, keyless start and a cooled glove box. An eight-inch touch-screen navigation system is also included. All this standard equipment will mean the base price won’t be cheap, and no pricing has been announced yet.
The launch engine will be the 2.0-liter, turbo-charged, four-cylinder unit which produced 220-hp and 258 lb-ft of torque. That motor will be mated to a six-speed automatic gearbox and Saab’s Cross-Wheel Drive (XWD) system.
So if you’ve been lamenting the passing of the Volvo wagon from our shores, Saab might be coming to the rescue, if only they can only stay afloat.
Check out the leaked brochure below.
GALLERY: Saab 9-5 Sport Combi Brochure
For those wanting an oil burning Tiguan in the United States, it seems that Volkswagen is full of empty promises. When its baby SUV was first introduced here in 2008, execs said that adding a diesel variant to the U.S. line up was a possibility.
Now, more than three years on, the Tiguan is into its first makeover and there’s still no diesel available, though VW is saying that it might be on the cards for 2015.
According to VW product planner John Ryan, the problem isn’t due to lack of customer interest, far from it in fact. “Everybody is asking for one,” he says. “Dealers are asking, customers are asking.” No doubt interest in a diesel Tiguan has been spurred by rising gas prices across the U.S. this year.
However, the problem of actually selling one on these shores is down to two major factors: emissions requirements and supply. In order to meet U.S. smog standards, an oil burning Tiguan would have to incorporate an Ad Blue type Urea injection system, which costs significantly more than the Nitrous Oxide canisters found on the Jetta and Golf TDI models. This would bump up the price of the Tiguan and likely render it uncompetitive against other small SUVs stateside. (It’s already one of the most expensive in the segment).
The other problem is being able to build enough of them to satisfy demand. Given that Tiguans for our market are imported for Europe and most home market sales are diesels, the largest market needs feeding first, which could hamper availability for American buyers.
Nevertheless, Ryan says that these obstacles could be overcome, though it will probably be another three years before a TDI Tiguan could actually materialize on these shores, as part of the next generation lineup. Third time lucky? Let’s hope so.
Those Europeans, they do love their oil burners. And so far they’re really the only ones who’ve made serious attempts at selling diesel powered passenger vehicles stateside.
Mercedes-Benz, perhaps the biggest proponent of the technology in the New World, currently offers four amongst its U.S. lineup. These include the R, ML and GL class SUVs, as well as the new E-class sedan. All use M-B’s Bluetec system which injects a urea like substance into the exhaust stream, along with Nitrogen Oxide reducers to help these vehicles meet ultra stringent North American emissions standards.
However, the Stuttgart automaker now plans to bolster its diesel offerings over here; a facelifted S-class will be available with a 3.0-liter turbo diesel V6, likely sometime in the fall, alongside an oil burning GLK.
The latter is an interesting one, for it will probably use a version of the 2.1-liter diesel unit currently offered on European market GLKs. Rated at 204 hp and 369 lb-ft of torque across the pond, this engine allows the premium crossover to scoot to 60 mph in under 8 seconds and top more than 30 mpg on the highway.
However, it will be interesting to see how American buyers take to more diesel models, though in Mercedes’ defense, the company has had more success than most at peddling them here. The company’s original 300 SD turbo diesel sedan became an icon in the late 1970s and 1980s and many are still in use today.
Beyond the S-class and GLK, Mercedes plans to offer a diesel version of its smallest car sold in the U.S., the C-class, which will likely arrive on these shores as well, though probably not until 2013 at the earliest. A further possibility, bolstering the total to eight U.S. oil burning offerings is the GLC baby crossover, though sources from within the company didn’t give any specifics, a spokesperson simply stating “there’s a lot of calendar between now and 2014.”
[Source: Car & Driver]
It’s official, the economic recovery is complete. Don’t believe us? Just ask the folks at Maserati, who were able to sell every single GranTurismo Convertible that landed States-side in 2010. In total, Maserati shifted 1,717 units this year, which included 558 units of this gorgeous convertible.
The GranCabrio – as most of you will know, has a Ferrari-developed 4.7-liter, V8 that produces a healthy 440-hp. Power is sent to the rear-wheels via a six-speed automatic with paddle-shifters.
Asking if it’s fast is like asking if Michigan winters are cold. It can accelerate from 0-62 mph in just 5.4 seconds, and if you find a runway long enough, it will top out at 176 mph.
Sadly, at a base price of $135,800 it is out of reach for most people, however, Maserati had no problem finding customers in 2010. That’s a big turnaround from last year where sales plummeted 49 percent.
Rumors have been circulating for some time, but now Global Vehicles CEO John Perez has come out and said it - Mahindra delayed EPA certification of its TR series pickup so it could end the agreement with GV as the official US importer.
Perez says that the original contract between Mahindra and GV contained a sunset clause which stated that should the trucks not be be ready for sale in the U.S. within three years – people could just walk away and Mahindra would not be subjected to any lawsuits.
Now that clause has come to mean something slightly different: GV, having invested several million dollars up front to secure a distribution network for the trucks is now out in the cold and Mahindra is washing its hands clean, leaving angry customers and considerable uncertainty over the future of the pickups in the U.S. market.
At present, GV is in the midst of a lawsuit against Mahindra, over delays of the vehicle’s introduction – which stems back to a falling out between the two parties. Mahindra wanted GV to make adjustments to the original dealer program, but GV refused. Mahindra then essentially ceased communication with the U.S. importer and delayed the vehicle’s introduction, leading to GV filing a lawsuit.
Now, with Mahindra having voided GV’s contract and statements that it engineered that delay, things have gone from bad to worse. As a result, there appears to be no solution for importing the trucks to the U.S. at present and as the lawsuit is dragged through the U.S. legal system – those dealers that signed on wonder if they’ll ever get their trucks. Stay tuned for further developments.