The Truth About Cars » History http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. Tue, 30 Jun 2015 22:06:33 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.2 The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. The Truth About Cars no The Truth About Cars editors@ttac.com editors@ttac.com (The Truth About Cars) 2006-2009 The Truth About Cars The Truth About Cars » History http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/wp-content/themes/ttac-theme/images/logo.gif http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/category/news-blog/history-news-blog/ General Motors Shareholder Lawsuit Dismissed In Delaware http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/general-motors-shareholder-lawsuit-dismissed-in-delaware/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/general-motors-shareholder-lawsuit-dismissed-in-delaware/#comments Tue, 30 Jun 2015 18:00:24 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1102945 A group of General Motors shareholders found their lawsuit over the February 2014 recall dismissed in Delaware Monday due to lack of evidence. The lawsuit — one of four linked to shareholders; the others are in Michigan — alleged GM’s directors acted in bad faith over the handling of the February 2014 ignition switch recall […]

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GM First Day as a Public Company Celebration

A group of General Motors shareholders found their lawsuit over the February 2014 recall dismissed in Delaware Monday due to lack of evidence.

The lawsuit — one of four linked to shareholders; the others are in Michigan — alleged GM’s directors acted in bad faith over the handling of the February 2014 ignition switch recall affecting 2.66 million vehicles, Detroit Free Press reports.

In his dismissal of the suit, Delaware Chancery Court Judge Sam Glasscock found the board “did not consciously fail to monitor” the company’s operations, thus was unable to find “substantial likelihood of personal liability on the part of a majority of the board.”

GM praised Glasscock’s ruling, especially in light of the various lawsuits still on the table, among other legal actions:

The Delaware Court properly dismissed the complaint because GM’s board of directors did its job in exercising oversight over the company. The other shareholder derivative actions pending against the board make the same allegations, so we hope the courts will dismiss those as well.

The Michigan-based lawsuits, two of which are in federal court, were held pending the Delaware decision. Spokesman Jim Cain hopes said decision leads to the trio’s dismissal.

(Photo credit: General Motors)

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Lowrider Magazine Founder Sonny Madrid Dead At 70 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/lowrider-magazine-founder-sonny-madrid-dead-at-70/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/lowrider-magazine-founder-sonny-madrid-dead-at-70/#comments Thu, 25 Jun 2015 20:00:47 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1100041 The founder of Lowrider magazine, Sonny Madrid, died Monday at 70. The San Jose, Calif. native founded the iconic magazine during the mid-1970s, Hemmings Daily reports, when two events linked to his previous magazines — published as a student at San Jose State University — provided the seed capital needed to launch the first issue […]

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Sonny MadridThe founder of Lowrider magazine, Sonny Madrid, died Monday at 70.

The San Jose, Calif. native founded the iconic magazine during the mid-1970s, Hemmings Daily reports, when two events linked to his previous magazines — published as a student at San Jose State University — provided the seed capital needed to launch the first issue in January 1977.

From there, Madrid and his staff sought to connect every last independent lowrider community as they could, with Madrid leaving the Bay Area in his 1954 Chevrolet sedan delivery to promote the magazine in locales like East Los Angeles — where lowriders began — New Mexico and Texas; the staff expanded outreach further east.

Madrid was also key in the decision to add pin-ups to the front of every issue of Lowrider, beginning with the November 1979 issue. Despite the initial outcry from both male and female readers, magazine sales climbed 15 percent to 20 percent, per figures reported in Charles M. Tatum’s book, “Lowriders in Chicano Culture: From Low to Slow to Show.”

Overall, Madrid’s Lowrider not only covered and helped to grow the lowrider scene, but also promoted the music, fashion and culture surrounding it. However, the original magazine would fold after the December 1985 issue over financial difficulties. The resurrected Lowrider returned in 1988 after former staffer Alberto Lopez bought the magazine from Madrid; Lopez later sold the magazine to publisher McMullen Argus in the late 1990s.

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California’s Black License Plates Are Back In Production http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/californias-black-license-plates-are-back-in-production/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/californias-black-license-plates-are-back-in-production/#comments Thu, 25 Jun 2015 19:00:48 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1099905 Thanks to California’s Legacy Plate Program, the state’s classic black license plates are back on the presses. The program, Hemmings Daily writes, was passed in 2012 after Assemblyman Mike Gatto noted the molds used to stamp the black, yellow and blue plates made in separate eras between 1963 and 1982 “were just sitting there in […]

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CAblackplate_700

Thanks to California’s Legacy Plate Program, the state’s classic black license plates are back on the presses.

The program, Hemmings Daily writes, was passed in 2012 after Assemblyman Mike Gatto noted the molds used to stamp the black, yellow and blue plates made in separate eras between 1963 and 1982 “were just sitting there in Folsom prison,” per Gatto’s legislative director Aaron Moreno. Moreno adds the molds were found intact once the dust was cleared, paving the way toward reintroduction.

However, the three plates could only be made if each one garnered a minimum of 7,500 pre-orders between January 2013 and December 2014. While the black plates blew away the rest with 20,000 pre-orders to date, the yellow and blue plates only had few thousand each.

When the new plates leave Folsom in the next few weeks, there will be two key differences between the 2015 edition and the originals made between 1963 and 1969: the “63” stamped in the right-corner sticker window will not be there, and the plate overall will be covered in a reflective coating as required by law. Otherwise, it will appear as if stamping never ceased.

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Report: NHTSA Failed Consumers Over Automotive Safety http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/report-nhtsa-failed-consumers-over-automotive-safety/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/report-nhtsa-failed-consumers-over-automotive-safety/#comments Mon, 22 Jun 2015 20:00:59 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1097473 Last Friday, the U.S. Transportation Department’s Office of Inspector General dropped the sledgehammer on the NHTSA over its failings in automotive safety. The 42-page report released to the public Monday says the agency fails to do all it can to promote automotive safety, from carefully reviewing safety issues and holding automakers accountable for potential problems, […]

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BMW 325Ci on Fire

Last Friday, the U.S. Transportation Department’s Office of Inspector General dropped the sledgehammer on the NHTSA over its failings in automotive safety.

The 42-page report released to the public Monday says the agency fails to do all it can to promote automotive safety, from carefully reviewing safety issues and holding automakers accountable for potential problems, to carefully collecting data and properly training its employees, The Detroit News reports.

The report — the result of the NHTSA’s stumblings surrounding the February 2014 General Motors ignition switch recall crisis — notes the agency ignored complaints as early as 2003 from consumers regarding air bag deployment failures in certain GM models over the years.

The issue isn’t out of the ordinary, unfortunately, as the agency was found to ignore 90 percent of all consumer complaints arriving daily. The screeners responsible for reading them spent mere “seconds” on each complaint, with one screener having gone over 78,000 in one year — 330/day — while working in other duties.

Regarding self-reporting from automakers, the NHTSA isn’t doing all it can to determine accuracy in what is reported. According to Jalopnik, what everyone else would call a fire, manufactures call it something else:

However, according to [NHTSA Office of Defects Investigation] staff, manufacturers routinely miscategorize safety incidents. For example, staff told us that some manufacturers avoid using the word “fire” in non-dealer field reports and instead use phrases such as “strange odor” to avoid categorizing an incident as fire-related.

The Inspector General’s report lists 17 major recommendations needed to extensively reform the NHTSA, reforms administrator Mark Rosekind plans to “aggressively implement” by June 2016. Rosekind and the Inspector General, Calvin Scovel, are among those set to testify before the U.S. Senate Commerce Committee Tuesday on automotive safety.

(Photo credit: Tony Webster/Flickr/CC BY 2.0)

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Low-Mileage Venom GT, Penguin-Owned Ferrari Set To Hit Auction Block http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/low-mileage-venom-gt-penguin-owned-ferrari-set-to-hit-auction-block/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/low-mileage-venom-gt-penguin-owned-ferrari-set-to-hit-auction-block/#comments Sun, 21 Jun 2015 17:00:17 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1096609 Should you happen to be in Cheswick, Penn. next Sunday, you could be the new owner of a 2014 Hennessey Venom GT, or a Ferrari once owned by a Penguin. Constantine & Pletcher owner and auctioneer Dan Pletcher says to TTAC he was putting together a single, nationwide auction with a handful of consignors, with […]

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2014 Hennessey Venom

Should you happen to be in Cheswick, Penn. next Sunday, you could be the new owner of a 2014 Hennessey Venom GT, or a Ferrari once owned by a Penguin.

Constantine & Pletcher owner and auctioneer Dan Pletcher says to TTAC he was putting together a single, nationwide auction with a handful of consignors, with the Venom GT — whose owner was said not to be happy with the vehicle — having been in his sights for a couple of months. He adds this may be the first time a Venom as new as the one put up by the owner is hitting the public auction block.

The Venom — one of 20 produced in 2014 — participated in the Concept Lawn exhibition at last year’s Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, is the only white model in the United States, and has only 745 miles on the odometer. Pletcher conservatively expects the exotic will leave the block for anywhere between $700,000 and $900,000.

Another vehicle of interest is the 2012 Ferrari 458 Italia once owned by Pittsburgh Penguin centerman Eugeni Malkin. Pletcher explained how this celebrity-owned Ferrari arrived in his auction house:

[The Ferrari] came through a friend of mine in the auto auction business that deals with [Malkin’s] agent. The Pittsburgh market is not really the best market for selling higher-end sportscars and performance cars… our roads are not the best for these type of vehicles.

Instead of placing the Ferrari on the showroom floor, Pletcher and the parties involved decided to add the car to the auction. He believes the Italia would fetch between a conservative estimate of $190,000 and $225,000 once the final bid is accepted, though the bidding could end much higher based on Malkin’s star power.

Three other cars set to join the Venom GT and 458 Italia include a numbers-matching 1957 Ford Thunderbird E-Code — referencing the roadster’s 270-horsepower 312-cubic inch V8 with dual four-barrel carb and automatic transmission — a numbers-matching 1968 Chevrolet Camaro RS/SS convertible, and a 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air with only 9,000 miles on the odometer. The trio are from a collection of 30 cars Pletcher plans to sell over the next two years.

The auction will be held in Cheswick, Penn. June 28 beginning at noon Eastern.

(Photo credit: Constantine & Pletcher)

2014 Hennessey Venom 2012 Ferrari 458 Italia 1957 Ford Thunderbird E-Code 1968 Chevrolet Camaro 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air

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Mercedes Considering Introducing Convertible SUVs To Lineup http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/mercedes-considering-introducing-convertible-suvs-to-lineup/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/mercedes-considering-introducing-convertible-suvs-to-lineup/#comments Sun, 21 Jun 2015 15:00:10 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1096577 Up until 2013, one could purchase a Mercedes G-Wagen with a droptop. Now, the automaker is thinking of dropping the tops throughout its SUV lineup. Mercedes sports cars and SUVs chief Wolf-Dieter Kurz says it may be possible to bring a convertible SUV to market once the market for them is found, CarAdvice.com.au writes. He […]

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mercedes-g500-convertible

Up until 2013, one could purchase a Mercedes G-Wagen with a droptop. Now, the automaker is thinking of dropping the tops throughout its SUV lineup.

Mercedes sports cars and SUVs chief Wolf-Dieter Kurz says it may be possible to bring a convertible SUV to market once the market for them is found, CarAdvice.com.au writes. He says the reason Mercedes stopped producing the G-Wagen Cabriolet after 34 years was due to a combination of volume and production reasons, adding such a vehicle exists in “a very slim niche in terms of the SUV portfolio.”

As for who might go for it, Kurz believes China would be a good start for a GLA or GLC convertible, though sales may be an uphill battle:

… China is not very good these days, or in total, in terms of convertibles, in terms of classical sedan-based coupes, in terms of roadsters. And it’s somewhat also the driving force in the meanwhile for the overall portfolio: can it be successful in China?

He adds there are “lots of discussions” and market research regarding convertible SUVs, but no decisions whether to press forward or not have been made thus far.

(Photo credit: Mercedes-Benz)

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Koreans Best Japan In 2015 JD Power Initial Quality Study http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/koreans-best-japan-in-2015-jd-power-initial-quality-study/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/koreans-best-japan-in-2015-jd-power-initial-quality-study/#comments Thu, 18 Jun 2015 20:00:32 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1095457 Once one of the bests among the rests, Japanese automakers fell below average in the 2015 J.D. Power Initial Quality Study as the Koreans rise in quality. While Porsche took the gold in initial quality for the third consecutive year, Kia took the silver in this year’s study, Detroit Free Press reports, marking the first […]

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2016 Kia Sorento SXL

Once one of the bests among the rests, Japanese automakers fell below average in the 2015 J.D. Power Initial Quality Study as the Koreans rise in quality.

While Porsche took the gold in initial quality for the third consecutive year, Kia took the silver in this year’s study, Detroit Free Press reports, marking the first time the brand has led all non-premium makes in the study; Hyundai held onto fourth behind Jaguar in 2015.

Meanwhile, Lexus tied with parent company Toyota for ninth with 104 problems per 100 units, with Infiniti finishing in fifth as the highest-ranked Japanese brand; it had placed 24th in 2014, five spots below the industry average of 116 problems per 100 units. Chevrolet took seventh as the highest-ranked U.S. mainstream brand, while Lincoln took eighth as the highest-ranked U.S. luxury brand.

According to J.D. Power U.S. automotive quality chief Renee Stephens, the shift in quality among the Koreans “was a historic shift” in the 29 years the study has been conducted:

For so long, Japanese brands have been viewed by many as the gold standard in vehicle quality. We’re seeing other brands, most notably Korean makes, really accelerating the rate of improvement. Leading companies are not only stepping up the pace of improvements on existing models, but are also working up front to launch vehicles with higher quality and more intuitive designs.

She adds the Koreans are where they are now due to their holistic approach in improving quality, from the assembly line, to design and the supply chain.

Technology remains the sticking point regarding initial quality, with the top problems being pairing smartphones to the vehicle’s infotainment system, and voice command. There, Stephens says Hyundai and Kia, as well as Chevrolet, benefitted from strong systems, while Ford has worked out the bugs, and Toyota’s system needed improvement:

Smartphones have set high consumer expectations of how well technology should work, and automakers are struggling to match that success in their new vehicles. However, we are seeing some (automakers) make important improvements along the way. What’s clear is that they can’t afford to wait for the next generation of models to launch before making important updates to these systems.

This year’s J.D. Initial Quality Study surveyed over 84,000 who bought or leased a new 2015 model, and covers 215 models and 139 plants.

Photo credit: Kia

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New Top Gear Presenter Reveals Talent Search For Co-Presenters http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/new-top-gear-presenter-reveals-talent-search-for-co-presenters/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/new-top-gear-presenter-reveals-talent-search-for-co-presenters/#comments Thu, 18 Jun 2015 18:00:42 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1095273 BBC Radio 2’s Chris Evans is the new lead presenter for “Top Gear,” but now he needs at least one other at his side, and it could be you. According to Top Gear magazine, the host began his audition search Thursday, which is open to any and all comers: The way Richard and James were […]

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Top Gear Talent Search

BBC Radio 2’s Chris Evans is the new lead presenter for “Top Gear,” but now he needs at least one other at his side, and it could be you.

According to Top Gear magazine, the host began his audition search Thursday, which is open to any and all comers:

The way Richard and James were found was by auditioning, so what we’re going to do is hold auditions. Not just for famous people, ex-famous people, up-and-coming famous people, but for people who are watching the show.

Male, female, old, young, it doesn’t matter. The one thing that does matter is that you’ve got to have a real appetite for cars, and you’ve got to know something about cars.

You can be a mechanic, you can be an amateur racing car driver, you can be a guy who’s a fireman but who’s been building his own Land Rover in his shed for five years, but you’ve got to know about cars…

Those who wish to live the dream are asked to record a video clip no longer than 30 seconds, filmed from the waist up with “no stunts, no gimmicks,” just talking. Candidates must be over 16, but they can be from anywhere in the world.

Finalists will be invited to audition live before Evans and the show’s production staff, though the host offered no guarantees a member from the public would be selected, stating such a selection would “only happen if there’s anything good.”

Details on where to send the clip will be announced Friday.

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Nakamura: Next-Gen Nissan Z May Take Inspiration From 240Z http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/nakamura-next-gen-nissan-z-may-take-inspiration-from-240z/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/nakamura-next-gen-nissan-z-may-take-inspiration-from-240z/#comments Wed, 17 Jun 2015 20:00:33 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1094873 Nissan design chief Shiro Nakamura revealed the next-generation Nissan Z could take its inspiration from the Datsun 240Z. The proposal would see the new Z head downmarket, reflecting the desire to “do something… more practical and appealing to younger customers” in a market becoming smaller day by day, Autoblog reports. The Z would also reverse […]

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Datsun 240Z

Nissan design chief Shiro Nakamura revealed the next-generation Nissan Z could take its inspiration from the Datsun 240Z.

The proposal would see the new Z head downmarket, reflecting the desire to “do something… more practical and appealing to younger customers” in a market becoming smaller day by day, Autoblog reports. The Z would also reverse a trend where the iconic vehicle continues to grow in performance — and numerical naming schemes — at the expense of what the 240 represented. As Nakamura puts it:

We are questioning ourselves in repeating the 350, 370. We don’t want to create 390Z, right?

As for what the execution of the plan would entail, Nakamura says the new Z wouldn’t “necessarily go into the same category” as either the Mazda MX-5 Miata or the Toyota 86/Scion FR-S/Subaru BRZ, pointing to a photo of the GTR-LM Le Mans prototype as a sign of wanting to do something “unique” with the car. He adds the Z could fill the role recently vacated by the cancellation of the IDx four-passenger sports car, parts of which are expected to live on as part of a FWD offering.

[Photo credit: Alexander Nie/Flickr/CC BY-SA 2.0]

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BBC Radio 2 Presenter Chris Evans New Presenter Of Top Gear http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/bbc-radio-2-presenter-chris-evans-new-presenter-of-top-gear/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/bbc-radio-2-presenter-chris-evans-new-presenter-of-top-gear/#comments Wed, 17 Jun 2015 18:00:40 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1094753 It’s official: BBC Radio 2 presenter Chris Evans will now be the new presenter of “Top Gear,” an appointment supported by Clarkson, Hammond and May. Evans explained how he came into the new role during the June 17, 2015 edition of his morning show, Top Gear magazine reports, which began with a phone call last […]

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Chris Evans Circa July 2009

It’s official: BBC Radio 2 presenter Chris Evans will now be the new presenter of “Top Gear,” an appointment supported by Clarkson, Hammond and May.

Evans explained how he came into the new role during the June 17, 2015 edition of his morning show, Top Gear magazine reports, which began with a phone call last Wednesday from BBC Entertainment chief Mark Linsey.

During the phone call, Evans learned Richard Hammond and James May would not be returning to the show after all following the dismissal of Jeremy Clarkson, and was asked if he would take up where they and former producer Andy Wilman left off. He had previously stayed out of what he called “a chess game” involving all three of his friends, preferring to let the matter resolve itself.

Once the situation changed, Evans deliberated with “TFI Friday” sidekick Will MacDonald his wife Natasha for a day on the proposal, deciding to accept the role after taking into account his long career in radio and television.

Prior to the announcement, Evans contacted his friends. May said he would “talk about things” with him over the next few days, Clarkson gave him his best wishes — and a piece of advice Evans couldn’t say on the air — and Hammond texted Evans was “designed and built” to host “Top Gear.”

As for who will join Evans when production begins in the next few weeks, he says one of his co-presenters would “definitely, 100 percent” be female, The Telegraph notes. His contract is for three years, and will pay £3 million ($4.7 million USD).

[Photo credit: Paul Williams/Flickr/CC BY-ND 2.0]

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Billionaire Investor Kirk Kerkorian Dead At 98 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/billionaire-investor-kirk-kerkorian-dead-at-98/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/billionaire-investor-kirk-kerkorian-dead-at-98/#comments Tue, 16 Jun 2015 19:00:31 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1093817 Billionaire investor Kirk Kerkorian died Tuesday at the age of 98, leaving behind a legacy which included the automotive industry in his twilight years. Aside from his numerous holdings in Las Vegas casinos — including MGM Resorts International — air charter businesses, and movie studios, Kerkorian held shares among all of the Detroit Three, Bloomberg […]

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1989 Chrysler TC
Billionaire investor Kirk Kerkorian died Tuesday at the age of 98, leaving behind a legacy which included the automotive industry in his twilight years.

Aside from his numerous holdings in Las Vegas casinos — including MGM Resorts International — air charter businesses, and movie studios, Kerkorian held shares among all of the Detroit Three, Bloomberg reports.

Though he once sold one of his businesses to Studebaker — only to buy it back two years later — Kerkorian’s dealings in Detroit began in 1990, when he acquired nearly 10 percent of Chrysler’s stock after being impressed by then-chairman Lee Iacocca. Five years after, he and Iacocca were rebuffed by the automaker and its then-new chairman, Bob Eaton, when the duo sought to buy the remaining 90 percent of the automaker for $22.8 billion; Daimler AG would buy Chrysler three years later.

Though he initially supported the so-called “merger of equals” — his outside analysis helped lead the two companies down the aisle, Automotive News says — he sued DaimlerChrysler for $3 billion in damages in 2000 for misleading him with said merger. Kerkorian would ultimately lose his suit in 2005, his appeal of the federal trial verdict also proving unsuccessful.

Two years later, Kerkorian sought to buy Chrysler once more, offering $4.6 billion to Daimler before being outbid by Cerberus.

Around the same time of the Cerberus bid, he bought nearly 10 percent of General Motors shares, selling them back a year later after his patience ran out with the automaker’s management when he failed to convince then-CEO Rick Wagoner to join forces with Renault-Nissan. He also lost $600 million in 2008 selling his 6.5 percent stake in Ford — citing a lack of confidence the Blue Oval could turn its fortunes around — which he had purchased for over $1 billion in the same year.

[Photo credit: Greg Gjerdingen/Flickr/CC BY 2.0]

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Mexico, Southeastern US Besting Canada, Detroit In Auto Manufacturing http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/mexico-southeastern-us-besting-canada-detroit-in-auto-manufacturing/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/mexico-southeastern-us-besting-canada-detroit-in-auto-manufacturing/#comments Tue, 16 Jun 2015 18:00:30 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1093441 Despite being unified on the trading front, Mexico and the Southeastern United States are besting Canada and Detroit in the automotive industry game. Presently, Mexico’s contribution to overall North American annual production came to 18.8 percent in 2014, Detroit Free Press says, double the percentage of vehicles the country’s burgeoning industry made back in 2004. […]

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National Flag of Mexico

Despite being unified on the trading front, Mexico and the Southeastern United States are besting Canada and Detroit in the automotive industry game.

Presently, Mexico’s contribution to overall North American annual production came to 18.8 percent in 2014, Detroit Free Press says, double the percentage of vehicles the country’s burgeoning industry made back in 2004. Conversely, Canada’s percentage fell from 16.9 percent a decade earlier, to 14.1 percent last year. The U.S. also lost production volume over the years, rebounding to 67.1 percent in 2014 after its seven-year-decline from a peak of 73.6 percent ended in 2011.

While the U.S. still makes the most vehicles per year, more production is heading south of the Mason-Dixon when not crossing the border entirely. DesRosiers Automotive Consultants president Dennis DesRosiers says “over half the capacity and 80 percent to 90 percent of investment dollars are going to the U.S. South or Mexico,” leaving Detroit and the Canadian auto industry out in the cold.

DesRosiers adds Canada’s industry could downsize to five automakers with a single factory each over the next 10 to 20 years, while Mexico could grow volume to an additional 1 million or 2 million units per year, thanks to heavy investments — $7 billion alone in 2014 — from North American and foreign automakers alike.

Meanwhile, IHS Automotive Consulting managing director Michael Robinet expects production volume in the Southeastern U.S. to grow to 5 million units, while volume in the Midwest will remain around 6 million units/year. Said growth is fueled by a combination of lower labor costs compared to Detroit, a nonunionized workforce at the ready, and state and local financial incentives meant to lure transplants to bring jobs to the region.

As for Canada, the nation’s industry has dwindled from 20 assembly plants — all established under the 1965 Auto Pact trade agreement between the U.S. and Canada — to just 10 in 2014 under the North American Free Trade Agreement. As a result, 2.1 million units of volume were lost since 1992, and is expected to jump to 2.6 million when General Motors ends some production at its plants in Oshawa, Ontario next year. More could be lost if FCA decides to move production of its full-size vehicles out of Canada, as well, a move which some believe will decide the ultimate fate of Canada’s industry.

No matter the projections, all three parties to the trade agreement will continue to fluctuate as far as investment is concerned. GM North America president Alan Batey said as much, stating the automaker wants to maintain a “balanced presence” in all three nations to better handle currency fluctuations and shipping costs, a view held among the manufacturers investing their resources into North America’s overall auto industry.

[Photo credit: iivangm/Flickr/CC BY 2.0]

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DeLorean Owned By Mrs. DeLorean Goes On The Auction Block http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/delorean-owned-by-mrs-delorean-goes-on-the-auction-block/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/delorean-owned-by-mrs-delorean-goes-on-the-auction-block/#comments Tue, 16 Jun 2015 16:00:03 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1093297 Should you happen to be in Berlin next Friday, you could have a shot at the DeLorean once owned by none other than the former Mrs. DeLorean herself. German auction house Auctionata is putting this particular bit of history on the block in Berlin June 26, Autoblog reports, a gift bestowed by the late John […]

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delorean-erstbesitz-mr-delorean-baujahr-1982-1

Should you happen to be in Berlin next Friday, you could have a shot at the DeLorean once owned by none other than the former Mrs. DeLorean herself.

German auction house Auctionata is putting this particular bit of history on the block in Berlin June 26, Autoblog reports, a gift bestowed by the late John DeLorean in 1982 to his then-wife, actor/model/presenter Cristina Ferrare.

Following the collapse of the company and the marriage, Ferrare sold the DeLorean to its then-new owner in the United States, ultimately garnering 13,540 miles in the three decades it has been on the road.

Bidding for this DeLorean is set to start at €34,000 (around $38,000 USD), though the auction house expects the vehicle to leave the block for anywhere between €70,000 and €100,000 (~$79,000 and $112,000).

Said expectation is in line with the highest price paid for the iconic vehicle: a 1976 prototype sold by Canadian house RM Auctions left the block at Pebble Beach for $110,000 in 2007 ($128,000 in 2015 dollars).

[Photo credit: Auctionata]

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Citroen’s Famed Hydraulic Suspension Rides Comfortably Into The Sunset http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/citroens-famed-hydraulic-suspension-rides-comfortably-into-the-sunset/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/citroens-famed-hydraulic-suspension-rides-comfortably-into-the-sunset/#comments Mon, 15 Jun 2015 17:00:18 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1092753 The suspension setup known for helping to save the life of late French president Charles de Gaulle will soon join him in the pages of time. Citroen’s famous hydraulic suspension is being discontinued by PSA Peugeot Citroen, Reuters reports, and will self-level its last car when the current C5 sedan concludes its production run. The […]

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Charles de Gaulle's Citroen DS

The suspension setup known for helping to save the life of late French president Charles de Gaulle will soon join him in the pages of time.

Citroen’s famous hydraulic suspension is being discontinued by PSA Peugeot Citroen, Reuters reports, and will self-level its last car when the current C5 sedan concludes its production run.

The discontinuation of the decades-old system, which combined a hydraulic pump with several nitrogen-filled pneumatic spheres to deliver a ride unmatched for decades, is part of CEO Carlos Tavares’ ongoing cost-cutting actions throughout the company. A source close to the Tavares says he believes other modern suspension systems can offer a comfortable ride just as well as the one under classics like the DS and SM.

Speaking of the DS, the hydraulic suspension under the DS of de Gaulle helped the car’s driver maintain control during an assassination attempt in 1962, where 12 gunmen killed two of the president’s motorcycle guards, as well as shot out two of the DS’ tires. In spite the assassins’ efforts, de Gaulle and his wife survived.

Similar systems were implemented by Rolls-Royce, Mercedes and Audi, but few others took the legendary setup beyond Citroen’s assembly lines.

[Photo credit: Davide Oliva/Flickr/CC BY-SA 3.0]

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General Motors Returning To Medium-Duty Truck Market Via Isuzu http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/general-motors-returning-to-medium-duty-truck-market-via-isuzu/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/general-motors-returning-to-medium-duty-truck-market-via-isuzu/#comments Mon, 15 Jun 2015 14:00:47 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1092625 General Motors exited the medium-duty commercial truck market when it left bankruptcy in 2009. Now, the automaker plans to return with the help of Isuzu. Unlike the Kodiak of past, GM plans to slap the Chevrolet bow tie on the nose of Isuzu’s medium-duty range, Reuters reports. Few details on the plan are known as […]

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Chevrolet Kodiak

General Motors exited the medium-duty commercial truck market when it left bankruptcy in 2009. Now, the automaker plans to return with the help of Isuzu.

Unlike the Kodiak of past, GM plans to slap the Chevrolet bow tie on the nose of Isuzu’s medium-duty range, Reuters reports. Few details on the plan are known as of this writing, but what is known is the automaker will import 80 percent of Isuzu’s trucks from Japan, assembling the rest in the United States via an Isuzu partner facility. The Japanese-made trucks will come with diesel power, while the American-made variants will be fitted with gasoline engines.

The import deal is the latest development in the renewed partnership between GM and Isuzu, following a September 2014 announcement the duo would jointly develop a mid-size pickup for markets outside of North America. Their previous 35-year-long capital alliance came to an end in 2006 amid financial troubles for the Detroit automaker.

The deal is also a new development for GM itself, which discontinued the Kodiak and GMC Topkick after negotiations to sell the medium-duty division to Isuzu and Navistar collapsed in 2009. As early as 2010, the automaker has looked for ways to return to the vacated market, either in Class 5/6 or 4/5.

[Photo credit: Frank Deandro/Flickr/CC BY 2.0]

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2017 Ford GT Entering 2016 24 Hours of Le Mans http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/2017-ford-gt-entering-2016-24-hours-of-le-mans/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/2017-ford-gt-entering-2016-24-hours-of-le-mans/#comments Fri, 12 Jun 2015 13:43:18 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1091553 Nearly 50 years ago, Ford threw down against Ferrari at Le Mans, sweeping the podium in so doing. Come 2016, Ford aims to do the same with the 2017 Ford GT. The 2017 GT will compete in the 2016 FIA World Endurance Championship season in LM GTE Pro, as well as the 2016 TUDOR United […]

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FORD_LE_MANS_10

Nearly 50 years ago, Ford threw down against Ferrari at Le Mans, sweeping the podium in so doing. Come 2016, Ford aims to do the same with the 2017 Ford GT.

The 2017 GT will compete in the 2016 FIA World Endurance Championship season in LM GTE Pro, as well as the 2016 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship season, where it will make its debut at the 24 Hours of Daytona in January.

The two-team effort will be led by Chip Ganassi Racing, who will campaign four GTs at Le Mans, with Roush Racing responsible for preparing the exotic’s 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 for endurance competition; driver announcements will come later.

Our own Ronnie Schreiber will have more on the Ford GT’s return to Le Mans later on; for now, these photos and the promo video will do.

2016 Ford GT FIA-WEC Gallery
FORD_LE_MANS_6 FORD_LE_MANS_5 FORD_LE_MANS_4 FORD_LE_MANS_8 FORD_LE_MANS_3 FORD_LE_MANS_1 FORD_LE_MANS_7 FORD_LE_MANS_2 FORD_LE_MANS_9 FORD_LE_MANS_10 FORD_LE_MANS_14 FORD_LE_MANS_13 FORD_LE_MANS_12 FORD_LE_MANS_11 FORD_LE_MANS_17

2016 Ford GT IMSA-TUDOR Gallery
FORD_LE_MANS_IMSA_1 FORD_LE_MANS_IMSA_3 FORD_LE_MANS_IMSA_5 FORD_LE_MANS_IMSA_8

[Photo credit: Ford]

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US Attorney’s Office Consider Charging General Motors With Criminal Wire Fraud http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/us-attorneys-office-consider-charging-general-motors-with-criminal-wire-fraud/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/us-attorneys-office-consider-charging-general-motors-with-criminal-wire-fraud/#comments Wed, 10 Jun 2015 15:00:58 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1088961 Federal prosecutors in New York are considering criminal wire fraud charges against General Motors over its role in the February 2014 ignition recall. The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York are also considering other charges against GM, though they hope to reach a settlement with the automaker by late summer or […]

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Renaissance Center At Night Circa January 2011

Federal prosecutors in New York are considering criminal wire fraud charges against General Motors over its role in the February 2014 ignition recall.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York are also considering other charges against GM, though they hope to reach a settlement with the automaker by late summer or early fall of this year, Reuters reports.

The basis for the wire fraud claim is linked to the prosecutors’ findings suggesting GM possibly hid information about the defects in the ignition switches installed in 2.66 million vehicles made in the early through mid-2000s, as well as made misleading statements on the issue.

The yet-to-be-finalized action is one more legal action GM has on its plate, following numerous civil lawsuits, over 4,300 compensation claims, and an ongoing criminal probe set to conclude the interview phase by October.

As far as settlements with the government are concerned involving the wire fraud charge, CEO Mary Barra informed shareholders her company fully cooperated with the U.S. Attorney’s Office, and any settlements to be made would occur on the company’s timeline.

[Photo credit: John Marino/Flickr/CC BY-SA 2.0]

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Trailer For Final Top Gear Episode Unveiled http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/trailer-for-final-top-gear-episode-unveiled/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/trailer-for-final-top-gear-episode-unveiled/#comments Tue, 09 Jun 2015 19:00:23 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1088417 Cue up The Doors, because the end is near: the trailer for the final episode of “Top Gear” was released Tuesday. The episode will be presented by only James May and Richard Hammond, with Jeremy Clarkson out of the picture following the “fracas” between him and producer Oisin Tymon earlier this year, The Telegraph reports. […]

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Top Gear Arctic Expedition

Cue up The Doors, because the end is near: the trailer for the final episode of “Top Gear” was released Tuesday.

The episode will be presented by only James May and Richard Hammond, with Jeremy Clarkson out of the picture following the “fracas” between him and producer Oisin Tymon earlier this year, The Telegraph reports.

The 30-second trailer — pulling footage from the two films which will comprise the final episode — presents the full trio tackling caravanning and racing to a dinner in the worst SUVs £250 ($382 USD) can buy. A second trailer shows trucks rolling down a muddy hill, and the lads travelling to a classic car show in affordable classic roadsters.

The BBC reportedly offered the remaining presenters a multi-million pound deal to stay on the long-running program, though the pair have stated they would be reluctant to return without Clarkson or show producer Andy Wilman.

The airdate for the final “Top Gear” episode has yet to be announced, but is expected to air on BBC Two in the next few weeks.

[Photo credit: Wapster/Flickr/CC BY 2.0]

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Marchionne Planning Shotgun Wedding For FCA With General Motors http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/marchionne-planning-shotgun-wedding-for-fca-with-general-motors/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/marchionne-planning-shotgun-wedding-for-fca-with-general-motors/#comments Tue, 09 Jun 2015 18:00:22 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1088273 How desperate has FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne become about marrying off his company? He’s asking activist investors to prod General Motors to the chapel. Marchionne recently began reaching out to hedge funds and other activist investors to help bring FCA and GM (or a European automaker) together to consolidate resources, Wall Street Journal reports. The […]

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Fiat Coupe Getting Ready To Be Married

How desperate has FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne become about marrying off his company? He’s asking activist investors to prod General Motors to the chapel.

Marchionne recently began reaching out to hedge funds and other activist investors to help bring FCA and GM (or a European automaker) together to consolidate resources, Wall Street Journal reports.

The search, which is coming up blank thus far, is the latest in the CEO’s attempt to find a happy ending for his increasingly desperate romantic tragicomedy film, fearing excess production and duplicate costs in engineering, R&D et al threaten future profitability of the overall industry.

For now, though, FCA’s low profit margins do not make for a good partner with stronger players, while Marchionne’s dealings with GM leave much to be desired. In 2005, he convinced the Detroit automaker to pay $2 billion to not buy Fiat — in hospice care by then — a move which also dissolved a five-year-old partnership to produce engines and transmissions together.

More recently, Marchionne attempted to woo GM back with an email to CEO Mary Barra suggesting as much. The automaker is transitioning its lineup to global architectures and can build said lineup on a broader scale than FCA. GM is also undergoing an internal consolidation to further boost profits, a plan Barra and others in management won’t allow to be derailed by outside distractions like Marchionne holding up a boombox in front of the RenCen playing Peter Gabriel, hoping GM will say anything but no.

However, Barra’s recent dealings with activist investors over a share buyback of $8 billion — resulting in a $5 billion buyback with no further issues regarding board seats — has given Marchionne hope for his own cause, which could become more aggressive with every breath GM takes.

[Photo credit: hamster!/Flickr/CC BY-ND 2.0]

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NHTSA Facing The Music Over Role In 2014 GM Ignition Recall Crisis http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/nhtsa-facing-the-music-over-role-in-2014-gm-ignition-recall-crisis/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/nhtsa-facing-the-music-over-role-in-2014-gm-ignition-recall-crisis/#comments Mon, 08 Jun 2015 17:00:38 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1087617 A year after General Motors went under the gun for its part of the February 2014 ignition recall crisis, the NHTSA is now facing the music for the rest. According to two internal reports released last Friday from the U.S. Department of Transportation, the agency failed several times to prevent the defective ignition switch found […]

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GMIgnitionAndSwitchAssembly02(1)

A year after General Motors went under the gun for its part of the February 2014 ignition recall crisis, the NHTSA is now facing the music for the rest.

According to two internal reports released last Friday from the U.S. Department of Transportation, the agency failed several times to prevent the defective ignition switch found in certain GM models from being repaired for over a decade, says The New York Times.

While the reports did lay the majority of the blame on GM, the blunt assessment of the NHTSA’s part of the story is now leading to improvements and revisions with the agency’s methodology into potential safety problems. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx confirmed as much during a conference call with reporters following the release of the reports, acknowledging “deficits” in the methodology, and admitting there was “room for self-improvement.”

NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind added he had not disciplined or dismissed any officials involved in the GM recall, but did note the improper handling of the situation “changed the culture” at the agency to the point where questioning the information received and assumptions pursued were encouraged.

The changes planned for the agency including putting automakers “on notice” without the need for gathering more evidence beforehand if a potential problem comes up, adopting a so-called “risk control” program to better align its departments and foster sharing of safety information, and instituting a formal process to contact lawyers representing affected litigants.

Finally, the NHTSA will be monitored by a team of experts over the next year, including those formerly of NASA and the National Transportation Safety Board, as well as a professor of medicine and engineering from the University of Michigan.

The two reports are only the first to give the agency the once-over; the Transportation Department inspector general will give their assessment later in June.

[Photo credit: General Motors]

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2019 Jeep Grand Wagoneer Possibly Set For Dealer Show Reveal In Vegas http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/2019-jeep-grand-wagoneer-possibly-set-for-dealer-show-reveal-in-vegas/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/2019-jeep-grand-wagoneer-possibly-set-for-dealer-show-reveal-in-vegas/#comments Mon, 08 Jun 2015 15:00:39 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1087545 Jeep dealers heading out to Vegas for the brand’s biennial show in August may have a grand surprise waiting: the 2019 Jeep Grand Wagoneer. The revived nameplate will grace an SUV set to be the most expensive Jeep-branded SUV ever, according to Automotive News, and is aimed at those customers who normally shop for high-end […]

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1988 Jeep Grand Wagoneer Circa September 2008

Jeep dealers heading out to Vegas for the brand’s biennial show in August may have a grand surprise waiting: the 2019 Jeep Grand Wagoneer.

The revived nameplate will grace an SUV set to be the most expensive Jeep-branded SUV ever, according to Automotive News, and is aimed at those customers who normally shop for high-end SUVs from Range Rover, Porsche and BMW.

The speculated Vegas debut also contradicts FCA’s recent announcement of delaying key models to reduce overall investment into the products, which include the Grand Wagoneer and its platform sibling, the Grand Cherokee. The two SUVs were scheduled to hit showrooms in the fall of 2017 and 2018, but the introduction of the Grand Cherokee may be delayed up to a year, while the Grand Wagoneer may miss its own deadline, as well.

The previous Grand Wagoneer left the assembly line for the last time in 1991, having been in production relatively unchanged since 1962, aside from numerous facelifts and other necessary adaptations for the time.

[Photo credit: ericncindy24/Flickr/CC BY-SA 2.0]

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Versata Sues Ford Over IP Theft Linked To Configuration Software http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/versata-sues-ford-over-ip-theft-linked-to-configuration-software/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/versata-sues-ford-over-ip-theft-linked-to-configuration-software/#comments Fri, 05 Jun 2015 19:00:17 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1085577 Texas software company Versata is suing former partner Ford over claims the automaker stole code from its proprietary technology. The lawsuit, presented before a U.S. District Court judge in Texas and filed May 7, says Ford received a patent in 2014 for internally developed software meant to identify incompatible parts across a million vehicle configurations […]

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17FordRaptor_04_HR

Texas software company Versata is suing former partner Ford over claims the automaker stole code from its proprietary technology.

The lawsuit, presented before a U.S. District Court judge in Texas and filed May 7, says Ford received a patent in 2014 for internally developed software meant to identify incompatible parts across a million vehicle configurations to avoid recall issues, Automotive News reports. The company goes on to claim said patent was based upon code for its own software, which was used by the automaker between 1998 and 2014 under an agreement netting Versata $8.45 million per year, and was denied a request to examine the new system in violation of the agreement.

Versata is seeking an injunction to block Ford from using the latter’s so-called Automotive Configuration Manager, and gives the automaker until June 29 to respond.

Ford denies the allegations, proclaiming the new software was developed in 2010 after Versata declared its technology “obsolete,” adding its replacement handles vehicle configuration “very differently, and more efficiently” compared to Versata’s software. The automaker also is seeking to dismiss or transfer the case out of Texas to Michigan.

[Photo credit: Ford]

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Donckerwolke Out, Sielaff In As Bentley’s Chief Designer http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/donckerwolke-out-sielaff-in-as-bentleys-chief-designer/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/donckerwolke-out-sielaff-in-as-bentleys-chief-designer/#comments Fri, 05 Jun 2015 16:00:45 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1085457 Bentley design boss Luc Donckerwolke parted ways with the automaker Thursday, with VW Group interior designer boss Stefan Sielaff taking the helm. Donckerwolke penned numerous designs for the VW Group brand lineup in his 23 years of service with the company, Car and Driver reports, including the first-gen Škoda Fabia and Octavia, Audi A2, Lamborghini […]

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Bentley Continental GT V8 S

Bentley design boss Luc Donckerwolke parted ways with the automaker Thursday, with VW Group interior designer boss Stefan Sielaff taking the helm.

Donckerwolke penned numerous designs for the VW Group brand lineup in his 23 years of service with the company, Car and Driver reports, including the first-gen Škoda Fabia and Octavia, Audi A2, Lamborghini Murciélago, and recently the Bentley Bentayga, Continental GT, and EXP10 Speed 6.

The designer also never held back on his thoughts about automotive design, such as when he slammed Lincoln for copying the Bentley Flying Spur for its Continental concept, which debuted at this year’s Detroit Auto Show. After posting his thoughts on Lincoln designer David Woodhouse’s Facebook, as well as his own account, Donckerwolke and exterior design boss Sangyup Lee laid it all out for Car and Driver:

Asked to elaborate, Donckerwolke told us: “This is not respectable. Such a copy is giving a bad name to the car-design world.” And his exterior design chief, Sangyup Lee, who described the Lincoln as “a joke, seriously,” added, “It is very disappointing, especially for an exclusive brand like Lincoln.”

His comments were supported by his colleagues and the top brass at VW Group at the time, but the latter may be the reason for Donckerwolke’s departure. Though he was said to have left Bentley on amicable terms, Jalopnik posits his open criticism of the Lincoln Continental may have played some role — if not the exact role — in the designer’s sudden departure, which stunned the automotive design world despite the amicable exit. Either way, VW Group nor Donckerwolke offered an explanation for parting ways.

Taking his place as Bentley’s head of design is Sielaff, who will take on the role beginning July 1. He will report to chief engineer Rolf Frech — and not, according to Autoblog, Bentley CEO Wolfgang Dürheimer — while also maintaining his current role for the overall group, where his boss is chief designer Walter de’ Silva.

Speaking of de’ Silva, it was suggested Donckerwolke would have been among those who would have been chosen to fill de’ Silva’s role once the latter called it a day. Other possible candidates included Sielaff and de’ Silva’s preferred choice, Wolfgang Egger. Whether VW Group will either find his replacement from within the company, from the outside, or bother at all remains up in the air at this time.

[Image credit: Bentley]

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Isle Of Man TT Claims Life Of French Rider Franck Petricola http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/isle-of-man-tt-claims-life-of-french-rider-franck-petricola/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/isle-of-man-tt-claims-life-of-french-rider-franck-petricola/#comments Thu, 04 Jun 2015 20:00:31 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1084601 The Isle of Man TT claimed one more Wednesday when French rider Franck Petricola succumbed to injuries caused during qualifying for this year’s events. The 32-year-old was set to debut in the 2015 Isle of Man TT when his accident occurred at Sulby Crossroads according to BBC Sport, becoming the 141st rider to lose their […]

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Franck Petricola

The Isle of Man TT claimed one more Wednesday when French rider Franck Petricola succumbed to injuries caused during qualifying for this year’s events.

The 32-year-old was set to debut in the 2015 Isle of Man TT when his accident occurred at Sulby Crossroads according to BBC Sport, becoming the 141st rider to lose their life since the historic event began in 1907. Petricola nearly lost his life a year ago while practicing for the North West 200 in Northern Ireland, sustaining injuries near the start/finish line at Primrose Corner.

Course clerk Gary Thompson praised Petricola’s character as a rider while offering sympathies to the rider’s family and friends, stating the injuries he suffered at the NW200 — including multiple fractures and a head injury — would have caused “many a lesser man” to give up; Petricola competed in this year’s NW200 prior to the TT.

Practice continues Thursday evening, with the first race of the 2015 edition set to start Saturday.

[Photo credit: Franck Petricola/Facebook]

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Former GM CEO Rick Wagoner To Give Deposition Over February 2014 Recall http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/former-gm-ceo-rick-wagoner-to-give-deposition-over-february-2014-recall/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/former-gm-ceo-rick-wagoner-to-give-deposition-over-february-2014-recall/#comments Wed, 03 Jun 2015 18:00:35 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1083673 Former General Motors CEO Rick Wagoner will be among those deposed by the lawyers heading the lawsuit against GM over the February 2014 ignition recall. Wagoner, who led GM from 2001 until his dismissal by the Obama administration in 2009, will be questioned by Texas attorney Robert Hilliard about his knowledge of the events leading […]

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Rick Wagoner TTAC Style

Former General Motors CEO Rick Wagoner will be among those deposed by the lawyers heading the lawsuit against GM over the February 2014 ignition recall.

Wagoner, who led GM from 2001 until his dismissal by the Obama administration in 2009, will be questioned by Texas attorney Robert Hilliard about his knowledge of the events leading to the recall of over 2.6 million vehicles over defective ignitions linked to as many as 109 deaths and over 200 injuries, The Detroit News reports. Hilliard is also seeking depositions from “every CEO who was there during the active coverup” prior to Mary Barra’s ascension to the role, those being Fritz Henderson, Ed Whitacre and Dan Akerson.

Others to be deposed by Hilliard and his team of lawyers include former GM general counsel Michael Millikin and attorney Anton Valukas, the latter hired by the automaker to conduct and report the investigation into the events leading to the recall.

Over 55 individuals are scheduled to give their depositions prior to Hilliard et al moving forward with their class action lawsuit in January 2016, with Barra closing out the process with her deposition October 3. Wagoner’s time before the attorneys is set for September 2, and most of the depositions will be conducted in Detroit.

[Photo credit: General Motors]

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