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By on October 9, 2015

Michael Horn

Update: Official statement from EPA.

During his voluntary testimony for a congressional committee Thursday, Volkswagen of America CEO Michael Horn announced the company would withdraw their application for emissions certification for 2016 model year Volkswagens powered by 2-liter diesel engines.

However, the reason for that withdrawal is not directly related to the “defeat device” that’s been at the center of the ongoing diesel controversy.

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By on October 9, 2015

South Dakota Rampage

Police in Rapid City, South Dakota arrested a man they say stole a bulldozer and dozed electrical poles, rammed a pickup and damaged a building Sunday.

Authorities said 21-year-old Justin Thornley stole a bulldozer from a construction site and demolished a house before ramming other objects.

According to the Rapid City Journal, officers needed beanbags fired from a shotgun, a Taser and pepper spray to arrest Thornley.  Read More >

By on October 9, 2015



Back in 2014, Volkswagen of America and Volkswagen Canada announced that 2015 would be the final year of the Eos. In the U.S. that meant the Final Edition trim replaced the Sport trim between the Komfort and Executive trims. In Canada, a Wolfsburg Edition was the only trim offered — effectively a Highline at the price of a Comfortline.

So, why is there now a 2016 Volkswagen Eos being offered in the U.S. for $4,000 less than before?

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By on October 9, 2015

Lexus GS-F

Lexus announced Friday that it would show a concept for “progressive luxury” at its Tokyo Motor Show stand when the show starts later this month.

The car, which Automotive News reported could be a concept for its flagship LS sedan, may be powered by a hydrogen fuel cell, hybrid or Bernie Sanders.

Lexus may also need to update its CT 200h, which is based on the Prius. Toyota is rolling out its new 2016 Prius, which will be the first car based on Toyota’s new global architecture. The CT 200h went on sale in 2011 and hasn’t changed much since.

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By on October 9, 2015

Volkswagen crossblue interior

It was a lofty goal, a possibility at one point made believable by a sudden onslaught of seemingly indisputable evidence.

Volkswagen Of America determined that in 2018 the brand would generate 800,000 U.S. sales.

Indeed, between the industry’s doldrums in 2009 and 2012 the Volkswagen brand recorded a 104-percent improvement as U.S. auto sales rose by a far more modest 39 percent.

The task then seemed simple enough. After proving they could double their volume over the span of just three years, Volkswagen needed another doubling over the span that was twice as long. Which, it turns out, wasn’t to be so easy.  Read More >

By on October 9, 2015


The supercar maker may be valued at more than $12.4 billion ahead of its initial public offering, which could happen as early as Friday, Bloomberg (via Automotive News) reported.

Ferrari may price its shares Friday night when it offers 10 percent of the Maranello-based automaker to the public. The remaining ownership of the carmaker will remain largely with the same ownership group, comprised mostly of the Agnelli family and Piero Lardi Ferrari.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Sergio Marchionne said in July that Ferrari would be worth roughly $11 billion, which analysts balked at being a little ambitious. Since then, Ferrari’s value may have climbed as Marchionne told investors that Ferrari wasn’t necessarily an automaker, but rather a luxury brand that could be more profitable than a traditional carmaker.

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By on October 9, 2015

2015 Volkswagen Golf TDI

Volkswagen of America CEO Michael Horn told a congressional committee Thursday that the fixed diesel cars would achieve the fuel economy figures advertised on the cars when they were purchased as new.

“We know we can fix these vehicles to achieve emissions standards,” Horn said.

Horn said that performance such as horsepower and torque for the cars could be impacted, but by keeping those cars at or above advertised mileage, the carmaker could mitigate damage brought by forthcoming class-action and federal lawsuits.  Read More >

By on October 9, 2015


There has been a lot of coverage recently devoted to that scandal where Volkswagen revealed that its vehicles have been polluting like a chemical company that dumps out its waste in poor neighborhoods late at night.

But this scandal seems to have taken our eye off the Volkswagen ball. I say this because the whole “cheating on diesel” thing is not Volkswagen’s only issue. It is merely one of a myriad of problems that has launched the brand into the mediocre, also-ran position where they find themselves in America today. And right now, I’m here to remind you of the largest of these problems: that they spend their money on absolutely the wrong things.

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By on October 9, 2015


2016 Infiniti QX50 RWD

3.7-liter VQ37VHR V-6, with Variable Valve and Event Lift (325 horsepower @ 7,000 rpm; 267 pounds-feet of torque @ 5,200 rpm)

7-speed automatic transmission with manual shift mode and Downshift Rev Matching

17 city/24 highway/20 combined (EPA Rating, MPG)

19 mpg on the 70/30 city/hwy grocery loop (Observed, MPG)

Tested Options: Technology Package — $2,750 (Intelligent cruise, blind-spot monitoring, lane departure warning); Deluxe Touring Package — $2,400 (19-inch wheels, power folding up second-row seats); Illuminated Kick Plates — $440 (!); Premium Package — $500 (Bose 11-speaker sound system, maple interior accents, aluminum roof rails); Premium Plus Package — $2,000 (Navigation, 7-inch touch-screen display, Bluetooth).

Base Price:
As Tested Price:

* All prices include $995 destination fee.

Cars will be built in China.

Scratch that — cars are being built in China already, but cars sold in America will soon be built in China.

It’s an inevitability that American car buyers will understand when Volvo brings over its long-wheelbase S60 that promises to be the first Chinese-made car sold in America. It’s already happened in most markets around the world — including Canada — but Americans are averse to cars being built in the C-word like, well, the C-word.

The 2016 Infiniti QX50 (formerly the EX35 in old-Infiniti nomenclature) was not built in China — but for all purposes that we’ll discuss, it was made in China. That’s because the car, which sold at a phenomenally slow pace in the U.S., has been thrown a lifeline from overseas. In China, the QX50 launched six months ago with a longer wheelbase to satisfy that country’s appetite for driving everyone, everywhere, all the time. It was a no-brainer for the U.S., but to justify significantly updating the car for our market, it needed sales — and to sell, it needed to be upgraded. And you can see where this is going.

We’ve had plenty of chances to buy one before now, it’s that just Infiniti hasn’t really ever given us a reason.

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By on October 9, 2015

1990 Plymouth Voyager

Earlier this week, several friends separately sent me this eBay Motors article, highlighting this relatively obscure performance machine sold at Chrysler/Dodge/Plymouth dealers back in the late Eighties.

No, it never carried the vaunted Shelby badges, nor was it an R/T — though one could (and I almost did) buy such a vehicle these days. However, with proper application of a well-stocked junkyard or two (or eBay, naturally), one could easily build a family hauler that could haul down the quarter mile in around twelve seconds.

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