Goldman Sachs: Toyota To Lose Money Through 2013

Analysts at Goldman Sachs’ Japanese arm have a dim forecast for Toyota, projecting an operating loss through the 2013 fiscal year, with Goldman predicting continued sales downturns in the United States, Europe and Japan, which comprise Toyota’s three biggest markets.

Read more
Violence In Mexico Sparks Demand For Discrete Armored Cars

Armored cars are an expensive proposition, nearly always costing well above $100,000, and for this reason, they’re rarely anything but luxury sedans or SUVs.

The problem with this phenomenon is that the places where armored cars are really needed, discretion is often better than driving an ostentatious bling-mobile. Texas Armoring, one of the leading armored car manufacturers, has noticed a spike in demand for “ordinary” bulletproof cars, mostly from Mexico, where a war between government officials and drug traffickers have caused unprecedented violence.

The vehicles featured in the video include late model SUVs like the Chevrolet Trailblazer and Ford Excursion, while one rep mentions that cars like the Toyota Camry and Nissan Maxima have also been retrofitted.

Hit the jump to see the video on Texas Armoring

[Source: Jalopnik]

Read more
Toyota Camry May Lose Spot As America's #1 Selling Car

Toyota‘s Camry has long enjoyed a plum position as America’s best-selling car. But a strong dip in sales, combined with a resurgent Honda Accord and the success of the new Hyundai Sonata could conspire to knock the Camry off of its pedestal.

Read more
SEMA 2010: NASCAR Edition Camry Trades Mundane for Muscle… and Mullets
NASCAR Edition Toyota Camry Revealed Ahead of SEMA With 680-HP V8

Building off of their success in NASCAR, Toyota has announced the RK Collection Camry NASCAR Edition show car, which will make its debut at SEMA next week. The special edition Camry is actually a two-door coupe and was developed by RK Collection, assisting Toyota Racing Development (TRD) realize the full potential of the Camry into a NASCAR counterpart.

Read more
Toyota SEMA Display to Include NASCAR Edition Camry, Sienna Swagger Wagon Supreme

Toyota has just announced its list of eight show cars for the annual SEMA Expo, including everything from a custom Prius, to a NASCAR edition Camry, to several modified trucks and even a Sienna Swagger Wagon. Along with the vehicles, Toyota will have on hand NASCAR driver David Reutimann, NHRA Top Fuel driver Antron Brown, bass fishing champion Kevin VanDam and Brian Huskey the actor who plays the dad in Toyota’s incredibly successful (and hilarious) “Sienna Swagger Wagon” commercial.

Read more
Mercedes-Benz SL Most Likely Vehicle to Get a Ticket In

If you like to drive with the top down on your Mercedes-Benz SL convertible, you’re more likely to get pulled over for a traffic ticket and are cited four times more often then the average U.S. driver, says a report out by Verisk Analytics Inc.

Read more
New NHTSA Crash Test Results Released: Only BMW 5 Series, Hyundai Sonata Get Top Scores

The new crash results for 2011 models are in, and only the BMW 5 Series and Hyundai Sonata got a 5-star rating overall.

The government-run tests were the first that employed a “female” crash-test dummy, and a direct crash into a pole. The vehicles were rated from 1 to 5 stars, which are based on a weighted average of risk of injury in the front and side crashes and rollover resistance compared to other vehicles. The only vehicles to earn 5 stars were Hyundai and BMW, and were among the first 34 vehicles tested this new way.

These new tests were put in place in order to give shoppers more information, since high scores had become so common.”More stars equal safer cars,” said Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. “Through new tests, better crash data and higher standards, we are making the safety ratings tougher and more meaningful for consumers.”

Most surprising were the results for the 2011 Toyota Camry, the best-selling car in the U.S. that got just 3 stars overall (the 2010 model, which was nearly identical, got top scores last year). The only other car to get a 3-star rating was the Camry Hybrid.

Placing at the bottom was the 2011 Nissan Versa, which was also the only vehicle to score just 2 stars overall. The blame of this poor score, says Nissan, is the Versa’s old design, and the company is working on ways to improve the car’s crash-test scores without a full redesign. The automaker believes that the 2011 Juke, which is based on the Versa platform, should score higher as it’s a newer iteration.

As for the rest of the vehicles, the remaining 2011 vehicles that were tested ranked with 4 stars overall. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is planning on testing 22 more 2011 models.

See after the jump for the full list of models tested under the new 2011 rules:

Read more
NICB Releases Top 10 Stolen Vehicles For 2009

The National Insurance Crime Bureau released their list of the top 10 stolen cars for 2009 , and the perenial favorites, the Honda Accord, Honda Civic and Toyota Camry are in the Top 10 yet again, taking the top 3 spots respectively.

The trade in spare parts, and in the Honda’s case, engines, make them valuable commodities, and the cars are also desirable for export to Third World countries. Pick-up trucks were also in demand, as each of the Big Three’s brands were represented, as well as the Ford Explorer.

The good news is that car thefts are down 17.1 percent, and have been declining for the past 6 years.

[Source: NCIB]

Read more
Hyundai Sonata Takes 3rd Place In Mid-Size Sedan Sales

The Hyundai Sonata has officially bumped off the Nissan Altima to take 3rd place in the mid-size sedan sales race. The Sonata sold 21,399 units in August, closing in on the Honda Accord, which sold 22,506 units. The Toyota Camry enjoys a comfortable lead, selling just over 30,000 units in August. The figures exclude fleet and rental sales.

Read more
Toyota Camry V6 To Get Fuel Economy Bump For 2011

Everybody stop what you’re doing. The 2011 Toyota Camry has received a slight fuel economy bump for 2011, with the V6 model  20 mpg in the city and 29 mpg on the highway, up from 19 and 28 mpg from last year’s model.

New low-rolling-resistance tires help with the fuel economy raise, and for those that want more, the 4-cylinder (22 and 32 mpg respectively) and Hybrid (31/35 mpg) are much more sensible alternatives.

Hit the jump to find out more about one of America’s most utilitarian cars, and its 2011 updates.

[Source: Toyota]

Read more
Mazda Celebrates Building 2,000,000 Mazda6 Cars

Mazda‘s excellent sedan, the Mazda6, is not really on the radar of most North American consumers, even though it’s a worthy competitor in the segment. That’s not to say that the car is a flop, but it’s not as strong a seller as, say the Hyundai Sonata or Ford Fusion, let alone the Toyota Camry or Honda Accord.

Read more
Kyle Busch Makes NASCAR History, Sweeping the Podium at Bristol Driving Toyotas

Kyle Busch isn’t without controversy both on and off the track. And while his fellow NASCAR drivers might have an unflattering thing or two to say about him, there’s no denying Busch is a force to be reckoned with on the race track. In an unprecedented set of events at Bristol, Tennessee, Busch drove two Toyota Camrys and a Toyota Tundra (no… not at the same time) to sweep the NASCAR weekend, becoming the first driver ever to do so.

The three events Busch swept were the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, NASCAR Nationwide Series, and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. It was definitely a historic achievement for Toyota’s presence in NASCAR, and for Kyle Busch and his team. Now if only he could play nice with the other drivers.

Official press release available after the break.

Read more
Top 10 Most Comfortable Cars Under $30,000

What makes a car truly comfortable? Air conditioning? Heated seats? Power window shades? Sure, those are all a good start, but with today’s modern luxuries, there are so many extras that can make your commute a comfortable one.

The folks at Kelley Blue Book have assembled the 10 most comfortable cars under $30,000. Not surprisingly Buick placed highly, taking both the first and second spots. And that first place went to none other than the new Buick LaCrosse.

Get the complete list of the Top 10 most Comfortable Cars (and why they made the list) after the jump:

Read more
Toyota To Get "Family" Styling

As part of a world-wide recovery plan, Toyota vehicles will get a standard front end treatment designed to unify the global lineup of Toyota vehicles. The new move is dictated by head honcho Akio Toyota’s directive to make Toyota cars have more “emotional appeal”, although its hard to see how the company can inject that into its appliance-like vehicles.

Read more