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.
Gone But Not Forgotten
A lot went down in 2013. It was something of a banner year for the automotive business. Products continued to get better, sales steadily improved and alternative propulsion, whether in the form of electricity or diesel gained significant traction.
Congratulations are in order for Volkswagen. The Routan has just earned the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s (IIHS) Top Safety Pick award, making it the ninth Volkswagen vehicle to receive this rating. This also means that Volkswagen has received the highest number of IIHS awards for vehicle safety.
Helping them reach this coveted spot, Volkswagen scored high marks with 2011 models including Jetta, Jetta SportWagen, CC, Passat, Tiguan, Touareg, Golf and GTI. To drive away with a Top Safety Pick award, vehicles must earn a rating of Good in the IIHS crash-test series, which includes front, side and rear crash tests, as well as pass the roof-strength test. That means that these VW vehicles provide the best overall protection in the most common accident situations.
“We’re delighted that the Routan has been given this prestigious award. We are even more delighted that Volkswagen now leads the American automotive industry with nine Top Safety Picks,” said Jonathan Browning, President and CEO, Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. “This is the reward for all the hard work we continually put in the development of new technologies for our cars.”
Soccer moms sometimes get a raw deal because of the vehicle of choice. But it’s not like they have much of a choice – a minivan is the best-equipped vehicle to haul their aspiring David Beckhams to games and practices. It’s time to stop mocking the soccer mom, and automakers are setting out to make the minivan cool… but will moms jump on the minivan band wagon?
At the recent Detroit Auto Show, a group of mothers from MomsLikeMe.com critiqued the latest wave of minivans. For the most part, they liked all the new creature comforts they came with, but when it came to the vehicle’s cool factor, they just couldn’t see it becoming any hipper than it already is (which means, not at all). They agreed that the minivan is all about practicality, not style sense.
“It is not worth the hassle to try and stuff everything and all your kids into a regular car,” said Patti Cleland, a 42-year-old mother of three from Grosse Pointe Woods.
The MomsLikeMe crew check gave critiques of the all-new Ford C-Max, Honda Odyssey, Toyota Sienna, Dodge Grand Caravan and Volkswagen Routan. Even though it was smaller, the C-Max scored high marks, and so did the Sienna, thanks to its four up-front cupholders, the dual moonroofs and the reclining second-row seats with leg rests.
[Source: The Detroit Free Press]
Volkswagen is recalling its Routan minivan for a wiring defect that could lead to a short circuit and a possible fire.
According to the company, the wiring harness was improperly routed, leading to the possibility of the harness insulation being worn down by repeated contact with the sliding door mechanism. Volkswagen will fix the problem under warranty, and vehicles made from June 1, 2008 to July 30, 2009, are affected.
Hit the jump to see the official press release
Volkswagen‘s compact Touran Minivan (not to be confused with the Routan sold here in North America) has just been launched in its newest incarnation, and the range is being led by a 1.6L BlueMotion diesel that makes 105 horsepower returns a very impressive 51.3 miles per gallon. Also interesting is the tiny 1.2L 4-cylinder gas engine that puts out a respectable 102 horsepower thanks to Volkswagen’s direct injection system, and a small supercharger attached to the engine.
The Touran is based on the Golf, making it a bit small for North American tastes, but perfect for Europe and Asia, where high fuel prices and tight spaces mean that a car like a Dodge Caravan is totally unsuitable, and a smaller footprint is required (Honda even sells a completely different Odyssey in other markets for this reason). If the Ford Focus C-Max is a hit in North America, the Touran might make it over to our shores, but with Chevrolet recently killing the Orlando for the United States (but not Canada), don’t count on it.
Hit the jump to read the press release
Gallery: Volkswagen Touran
[Source: The Truth About Cars]