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If you’ve long since erased the Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid from your memory bank, don’t worry. Buyers forgot about it at the same time, and the automaker is prepared to do the same.
When Volkswagen rolled out a list of changes to its 2017 year vehicles today, the Jetta Hybrid was nowhere to be seen. Instead, the automaker placed a note in its empty chair, reading “Jetta Hybrid no longer available.”
It was an undignified (but not unexpected) end for a very unpopular model — one the automaker doesn’t need weighing it down as it tries to streamline its operations in a bid to save cash. Read More >
Volkswagen Group wants to give its operation a top-to-bottom shakeup, which means ditching the bureaucratic, centralized ways of the past and positioning itself as a lean, nimble player in a rapidly evolving marketplace.
Oh, and there will be tons of electric vehicles. Piles and piles of them.
In its announcement of the TOGETHER – Strategy 2025 plan, the automaker came off sounding more like a tech startup, touting a newfound “entrepreneurial mindset and approach” that will bring the company out of the long shadow of the emissions scandal. Read More >
With its expansion dreams fading fast in the rear-view, Volkswagen needs to shrink and streamline its operations in a hurry, meaning unwanted brands could soon be priced to sell in its driveway.
According to Bloomberg, the automaker plans to conduct a wide-ranging strategy and portfolio review, with details of the strategy expected to go public tomorrow. An asset sale could be in the works, and insiders are already hinting at which brands will be dropped. Read More >
Yesterday’s news that Nissan will buy a 34-percent controlling stake in Mitsubishi for $2.2 billion was the latest win for Carlos Ghosn, the man behind the Renault-Nissan Alliance of 1999 and possessor of many fingers in many pies.
Ghosn, CEO of both Nissan and Renault, inked the agreement with Mitsubishi as the other automaker battles a misleading gas-mileage scandal. At a price of 468.52 yen/share, Ghosn’s purchase of new shares was a smoking deal. Mitsubishi shares traded for 1,100 yen just last December.
What becomes of the two companies now? And how will Ghosn’s world-straddling empire benefit by snapping up beleaguered Mitsubishi? Read More >
Subaru’s parent company plans to change its name from Fuji Heavy Industries to, simply, Subaru Corporation. Why? Because #branding, of course.
In an effort to leverage the recognition of its Subaru brand, the transportation giant says the move away from its long-winded company name will help grow Subaru as a distinctive global presence in the automotive and aerospace industries.
Fuji Heavy Industries currently has four divisions: Automobile, Aerospace, Industrial Power Products, and Eco Technology.
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Buick is poised to take the Verano behind the barn and vacate the compact car market in North America, according to sources familiar with the automaker’s plans.
The Verano’s dwindling sales share and the popularity of the automaker’s crossovers and SUVs is behind the decision to phase out the entry-level luxury compact, Automotive News reports. Read More >
“Do those non-diesel things, only better,” seems to be Volkswagen’s mantra these days.
The aftermath of the continuing diesel emissions scandal saw the embattled automaker dive deep into cleaner technology, and it now looks like VW wants its name on a relatively cheap electric vehicle, Autocar reports (via Carscoops). Read More >
Rival automakers salivating at the thought of snapping up a castoff from Volkswagen’s brand portfolio will have to sit and wait.
Amid grim fourth-quarter financial data and ongoing expenses linked to the diesel emissions scandal, the company is standing by its assets, but admits they might have to jettison some if unexpected expenses crop up. Read More >
Sergio Marchionne, CEO of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, could shed light on the company’s uncertain future this Tuesday when the company reports earnings. However, as the Detroit Free Press reports, Marchionne may not take the opportunity to clear the air, which would leave employees at FCA plants wondering about their futures for months to come.
The sweatered one has already stated in no uncertain terms that the Chrysler 200 and Dodge Dart will get the axe. Just when that will happen, and what product will fill freed-up plant capacity and dealer lots, remains a guessing game.
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Fiat Chrysler Automobiles chairman John Elkann, like the company’s sweatered CEO, is making come-hither eyes in the hopes of luring a suitor.
FCA needs a partner to turn its lofty debt pile into capital, so Elkann wants other automakers to know just how thrilled he’d be if they helped FCA save $10 billion a year, he told shareholders of the investment company controlling FCA (via Bloomberg).
The problem, he lamented, is that other automakers are all wrapped up in trying to develop autonomous technology, often with outsider help. Like a wallflower with a heart of gold, FCA feels ignored despite having a lot to offer.
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