Man, people are really pumped about the cool, expensive cars they just bought.
That nugget of wisdom, Russia’s perpetual Cash for Clunkers program, VW’s appeal to Colorado and Washington buyers and GM’s knows what way the wind is blowing now … after the break!
Consumer Reports insight: People love fun cars!
Consumer Reports compiled its January list of the most and least loved and cars in the U.S. and I’ll spoil the ending — people are pretty jazzed about expensive, fun cars.
Tesla topped the list of 230,000 responses with its Model S, according to USA Today. About 97 percent of Model S owners said they’d buy the car again (they may have to after 60,000 miles) followed by the Chevrolet Corvette and Porsche Cayman, Macan and 911 to round out the top five.
On the other end, Kia’s Rio topped Consumer Reports’ futility list, followed by the Nissan Sentra and Jeep Compass and Patriot.
Who doesn’t love a Porsche?
Continental chief says VW probably killed diesel in the U.S.
Volkswagen’s diesel scandal could crush fledging diesel car sales in the U.S., Japan and China, Continental’s chief told a German newspaper Thursday, according to Reuters.
“The diesel passenger car could sooner or later disappear from these markets,” Continental CEO Elmar Degenhart told Boersen-Zeitung.
Degenhart told the paper that his company also couldn’t run away from the scandal fast enough:
“We developed and supplied the engine controllers in line with VW’s specifications. The installation and tuning of the software, the so-called calibration, was done by VW,” he said, according to Reuters.
GM won’t avoid first ignition switch trial
A judge ruled Wednesday that a trial against General Motors regarding faulty ignition switchs will go to trial, a blow for the automaker that was seeking to dismiss that claim, Reuters reported (via Automotive News).
The trial was the first GM was seeking to dismiss and is a bellwether for other pending lawsuits, Reuters reported.
The lawsuit was filed by a man who said his 2003 Saturn Ion’s airbags didn’t deploy when he hit a tree in 2014. He claims the faulty ignition switch was the cause of those airbags not deploying.
The decision “paves the way for the jury to have an unfettered and full view of GM’s behavior in covering up this defect,” the man’s lawyer told Reuters. GM lawyers said they would be prepared to argue their cases.
There are six bellwether trials related to the faulty GM ignition switches scheduled for 2016, according to the report.
Volkswagen teases more Microbus, named “BUDD.e”?
On Wednesday, Volkswagen released a teaser image and short video of a likely Microbus concept that the company will roll out next month at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
The image of the car’s headlights is standard fare — half covered LEDs and an interesting textured grille. The video, however, sports a quick look at the car’s tail end, which Car & Driver deduced reads “BUDD.e”.
The concept could be named as such for many reasons: “E-mobility,” “Buddy,” the van’s propensity to be popular with stoners.
Whatever it is, we won’t have to wait long. CES starts Jan. 6.
In Mother Russia, Cash for Clunkers lasts forever
Russian officials said they’ll spend $275 million to help prop up its flagging car industry after sales sunk in 2015, Reuters reported.
The stimulus follows similar programs from 2013 and 2014. Those programs were beefed up this year with limited success.
Automakers are reducing expectations for the country — which is one of few markets where automakers can actually grow — including Hyundai, which said Wednesday that it would reduce production in Russia by more than 6 percent for 2016.