Are you sure you want to save the manuals?
In theory, of course, you want to save the manual transmission. You enjoy driving. You enjoy enhancing the man-machine connection by synchronizing movements between your left foot, right hand, and right foot. You value the art of a perfectly timed shift, of properly holding a gear through a corner when even the most intelligent automatic would upshift. You know the corner. You know driving. You know how to get the best out of a Ford Fiesta ST half an hour before sunrise on Italy’s Stelvio Pass, even though you’ve never set foot outside Iowa, even though you drive a RAV4 Hybrid.
“What? I would’ve gotten a manual if Toyota offered one,” thou doth protest too much.
As we approach greater degrees of autonomous driving, as roads fill up and speed limits are not altered to reflect our vehicles’ huge improvements in stopping ability and safety, saving the manuals sounds like a noble campaign. Preserve that last shred of pure driving already forsaken by Ferrari, by performance-oriented Porsches, by the general populace that believes their right hands are better off holding a skinny cinnamon dolce latte than a leather-wrapped shifter.
But I’m driving proof, a $9,995* 2016 Chevrolet Spark, that we shouldn’t paint with such a broad #SaveTheManuals brush. We should save some of the manuals, but certainly not all of them. Read More >
General Motors’ 2016 Chevrolet Spark LS does not have power locks.
Correction: as shown in the high-production-quality video embedded below, the 2016 Chevrolet Spark LS has a mysterious power lock, singular.
For an advertised Canadian base price of $9,995, or $11,595 with destination charges, the 2016 Chevrolet Spark is at once both very well equipped and decidedly spartan. This is not the Ford Festiva you inherited from your ex-girlfriend’s uncle. “The bumper and hood are no good,” he told you, having recently run into a deer. “But she runs pretty good.”
No, in the base 2016 Spark, there’s a backup camera, for example, and antilock brakes, a bundle of air bags, decent seats, Bluetooth, and WiFi availability.
There’s also a bit of magic. Read More >
“Do you want to get in and out of your car easily and do you want to be able to back out of a tight parking spot?” Ford Mustang buyer and former Chevrolet Camaro shopper John Oglesby wrote to Car And Driver for its September 2016 issue. “If so, you need the Mustang.”
John Oglesby is truly representative of the market as a whole. After holding its position as the top dog in the segment for five years, the Chevrolet Camaro predictably lost its title to the Ford Mustang in 2015, the year of an all-new Mustang; the last year for the now-departed fifth-generation Chevrolet Camaro.
2016 hosted the launch of an all-new Chevrolet Camaro, but a return to sales leadership wasn’t in the cards. Not at any point since the nameplate’s 2009 return has the Camaro sold so poorly. Year-over-year, U.S. Camaro volume is down 15 percent compared with 2015, the Camaro’s previous worst year since returning. Read More >
Anticipating virtually nonexistent demand, General Motors will ship 15 copies of the 2016 Chevrolet Camaro coupe to the United Kingdom for deliveries in September. Another three Camaro convertibles are expected to find homes one month later.
Chevrolet, which concluded a decade-long full-line foray into Europe last year, will sell the Camaro through only one UK dealer, Ian Allan Motors in Virginia Water, Surrey. You may recall hearing that Virginia Water was the first UK locale outside London in which the average price of a new home crested £1,000,000.
British buyers heading to Virginia Water in search of a new Camaro will certainly need to have access to more funds than buyers who are keen on a new Ford Mustang. Given the blame we cast for poor U.S. Camaro sales on a pricing scheme that presents the Camaro as a premium pony car, it’s not surprising to see that Camaro pricing in the UK would be similarly lofty.
But there’s one key difference. Read More >
General Motors hopes to avoid paying up to $10 billion in liabilities by challenging last month’s appeals court ruling in the faulty ignition switch saga.
Green cars should cut through the air like a bird, not a wall, but a team of stylists at General Motors’ South Korean design studio wasn’t thinking of that when they put together the 2017 Chevrolet Bolt.
The main goal of the team crafting the first “affordable” 200-mile electric vehicle was creating a vehicle with enough interior room to satisfy a nation of crossover fanatics. The result? A veritable brick, but a spacious one at that. Read More >
Yes, Camaro sales figures. They’re not attractive, not what General Motors was accustomed to achieving when the reborn Camaro returned in 2009 as a fifth-generation Ford Mustang fighter. Not for the first time, we told you that story yesterday. Much as we all expected that the Camaro, in its final year, would be outsold by the high-production sixth-gen Mustang in its first year, 2015 is over. This is 2016. The Camaro is the new car. The Mustang could be resigned to Yesterday’s News status.
Instead, the Mustang is outselling the Camaro by huge margins, the Dodge Challenger has outsold the Camaro in each of the last three months, and Camaro volume is down 37 percent since May, year-over-year.
What’s an automaker to do? Read More >
Detroit Three automakers need to invest in their Canadian operations or it’s no deal, the president of the union representing hourly workers said yesterday.
Contract talks kick off tomorrow between the automakers and Unifor, but a cloud already hangs over the negotiations in the form of recent threats of a strike and GM’s reluctance to talk about its Oshawa plant’s future. Read More >