Facing a looming deadline to comply with a NHTSA request to recall 2.7 million 1993-2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee and 2002-2007 Jeep Liberty SUVs – some of which are close to 20 years old at this point – Chrysler had decided to comply with NHTSA’s request.
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The sagging EU economy led to the worst car sales since 20 years (cause and effect could also be the other way round.) With so much riding on car sales, France’s La Lettre Auto K7 found a way to predict them with greater certainty: They simply ask car dealers how many orders they received. Most volume brands in Europe are built-to-order, and even in the worst economic climate, that takes a minimum of 4 weeks until the car is ready to be registered. That’s when usual statistics recognize the sale.
Matt Farah of The Smoking Tire is one of TTAC’s most loyal readers, and we’d hate to see anything bad happen to him. But sometimes he really brings it upon himself.
I needed something cheap, fuel efficient, and at least as powerful as the rotary it would replace… What I came across was something that didn’t excite me much but fit the bill fairly well, a 3.8 liter V6 and T5 transmission out of a 98 Camaro complete with ECU and harness, the price, $600… Turns out GM had their stuff together on this little bastard. It’s a little heavy due to being all cast iron and the heads don’t flow well but it’s rock solid reliable and gets great mileage. Plus it’s power numbers are not far from the 5.0/T5 I was originally looking for. Time to get transplanting.
And that’s how a fellow in an Ohio garage wound up building a race-winning RX-7 that happens to be powered by a Series II 3800 V6.
This video, taken at HyperFest in the Spec E30 class, shows exactly why club racing is so much fun and also why it’s not for everybody. One minute you’re chasing pavements, the next you’re rolling in the deep (grass).
Senior members of the German government are leaning heavily on EU member states, warning “that German automakers could scale back or scrap production plans in their countries unless they support weakened carbon emissions rules,” Reuters writes. Cabinet members are said to focus their strong-arming on EU countries that recently have been bailed-out, mostly with German money. “They have tried everything at the highest level to pressure member states, in particular countries in the bailout club, to support their proposals,” a diplomat told Reuters. The EU Parliament is set to finalize rules that set a 95g CO2 / km limit by 2020.
The fight however seems not so much a quest for cleaner air than an underhanded fight for more breathing room for the auto industries of some member states. Read More >
I wish I had more time with the Focus ST, but circumstances conspired to cut my loan short; I was off on the West Coast, driving a hot hatch older than I am, as well as two competitors, the Volkswagen GTI and the Mazdaspeed3. Driving those two back to back gave me some context before I drove the first truly hot Focus since the first-generation SVT version. In Europe, that car was also an ST, dubbed the ST170, because the RS was top dog in Ford of Europe’s hatch hierarchy. I hear that we’ll be getting the next Focus RS as well, complete with the 2.3L Ecoboost, but of course, my Ford sources will neither confirm or deny that.
Howls of protests ensued when GM stopped disclosing monthly production numbers, touching off, says Automotive News [sub], “concern among industry analysts and economists, as well as suppliers that rely on the data for their production plans.“ The industry paper explains what is wrong with this move: Read More >
Here’s a confession. I found this cool thing and I want to tell you all about it because, frankly, it is interesting and if it reaches the right person it might just change someone’s life for the better. My problem is that I don’t know how to begin an article in a way that doesn’t pull on your heartstrings or otherwise involve some bad pun that leaves me looking like a total ass. The subject is sensitive and it needs to be handled delicately, but at the same time I can’t write anything makes me feel like an overly PC tool, either. Since I am trapped, I guess I’ll just say it outright: I found this company that will convert a full size GM pickup for use with a wheelchair in such a way that it preserves the vehicle’s lines and doesn’t tell the entire world that the truck is a handicapped conversion unit. What’s more, this truck can be set up so the wheelchair bound person can be either the passenger or the driver. That’s cool, and whether or not someone in your life is confined to a wheelchair, I think you’ll want to see this too. Read More >
TTAC commentator wannabewannabe writes:
I wrote you a while back about my 1990 Chevy pickup, but I’ve since moved on to more interesting cars.
I have a 1994 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham (B/D-Body with an LT1 FTW!) that looks literally identical to this one, same color inside and out. It currently has just under 184k miles on it, is my daily driver, and is in pretty good shape. Very reliable car! Read More >
Behold! The American military electric vehicle! Also known as the Columbia ParCar, it’s part of a broad-based Department of Defense program to purchase off-the-shelf NEVs and electric cars for non-tactical use. Seems like a very reasonable idea; in case of war, gasoline might be required for other things like fighter jets and napalm.
After reading some details of Zero Motorcycles’ 2013 range of two-wheeled electric vehicles, however, I’m wondering if there isn’t more that infamous military-industrial complex could be doing to make the next generation of Nissan-Leaf-a-likes more useful.
Renault and Nissan have a global alliance and in India both companies keep re-badging each other’s vehicles. While Renault has re-badged the Micra as the Pulse and Sunny as the Scala, Nissan will do it’s first re-badge exercise on a Renault product with the Terrano. The Nissan Terrano, as you can see in the above sketch, is a re-badged Renault Duster.
Hopes of a bottoming of the European have been frustrated, and the small April uptick turned out as a flash in the pan.
We warned in April not to read too much into car data, caused by a curious confluence of calendars. We predicted two weeks ago that the EU market will continue on its downward trajectory. And so it does. Read More >
If the Carbon Motors business model was so bad, how did the company last as long as it did? To paraphrase an especially sharp-tongued commentor from one of the many Carbon E7 threads I’ve followed on the web over the years, the company’s business plan seemed to revolve around borrowing money from the government to build cars that they would then sell exclusively to the government. Only the government would be dumb enough to fall for such a scheme and the government of Indiana apparently did.