Auto sales are expected to have ended the year up by around 5 percent. This according to analysts at Scotiabank and elsewhere. China, where a quarter of the world’s automobiles are sold, is probably up 4 percent, Europe is expected to be down some 8 percent. Auto sales in the U.S. on the other hand are seen to have risen some 14 percent for the year. More precise data are expected within hours or days, so let’s have a look forward. Read More >
Hoping that you are all having a very Happy Holiday Season, my present to you guys today is the 9th installment of our much anticipated monthly rendezvous: the World Roundup.
If last month the focus was on China, Austria and Japan, in November all spotlights are on Brazil…
You can check out previous World Roundups here for March 2012 (“Has the Hybrid era started for good?”), April 2012 (“Big change coming from India”), May 2012 (“GM and Toyota Etios make headlines”), June 2012 (“Hyundai Santa Fe and Ford Focus shine”), July 2012 (“Geely CK writes history in Ukraine“), August 2012 (“The Subaru XV topples a legend in Switzerland”), September 2012 (“Ford Focus strong in China”) and October 2012 (“One Japanese in the Chinese Top 50″).
Had enough of the world and you just want to know which cars sell best in your own backyard? Easy. You can visit 171 countries and territories in my blog in the comfort of your own lounge. Just like that.
Back to our Roundup…
Possibly a bigger scandal is following Hyundai’s MPG brouhaha: There is a stench of insider trading. “This smells pretty bad,” Robert Boxwell, director of consulting firm Opera Advisors in Kuala Lumpur who has studied insider dealing patterns, tells Reuters. Read More >
Could one of the Detroit auto makers blown the whistle on Hyundai and Kia’s mileage figures? Automotive News seems to think so.
“Who’s next?” This is the number one topic at the Los Angeles auto show. After Hyundai had to restate its MPG numbers and pay compensation to customers, executives and analysts are convinced that more automakers may have to do the same, reports the well-connected Reuters reporter Bernie Woodall from the back-rooms and cocktail parties in LA. Read More >
Part Fiat 500C and part GMC Envoy XUV, the Volster C3 rolltop concept has a rolling canvas roof (like the Fiat) designed to help make it easy to carry tall objects (like the XUV). The roof can roll two ways, away from the cargo area to carry tall objects, or away from the passengers to help get some sunshine on their heads. Underneath, it’s all Veloster Turbo mechanicals.
On paper, there’s no contest. For the same price as the new Ford Escape, the even newer Hyundai Santa Fe Sport includes a longer warranty, more power, and a much roomier interior. But if such comparisons could be decided from the spec sheets alone, auto reviewers would have to find a new line of work.
In a world obsessed with quantity, volume, economies of scale, speed, expedience and all that comes with it, wouldn’t it be nice if someone wanted to ease up a little and make sure things work?
After Hyundai was caught by the EPA with the wrong fuel economy ratings on “select vehicles” (read: most of them) media outlets (including this one) prognosticated that Hyundai would have to abdicate as king of the fuel sippers. Nothing doing, says TrueCar.
According to TrueCar’s sales-weighted rankings, Hyundai continues to put the most automobiles with the lowest fuel consumption on America’s roads – even after Hyundai and Kia had to restate their EPA window stickers, and had to give money back to customers. Read More >
Well, we knew this one was inevitable. A compliant filed in Ohio court against Hyundai and Kia due to their overly optimistic fuel economy claims.
Hyundai has long been in the top spots of America’s most fuel miserly vehicles. Over night, Hyundai will drop a few rungs down. Audited and found wrong by the EPA, Hyundai and Kia agreed to restate the fuel economy ratings on many of its cars. Cars in showrooms will be relabeled. Customers of more than a million 2011 through 2013 vehicles in the U.S. and Canada will receive debit cards. Read More >
The first-gen Hyundai Excel was sold in the United States for the 1986 through 1989 model years, and it was a supremely bad automobile. So bad, in fact, that most of them were used up and crushed by the middle of the 1990s. Because of their rarity today, I always photograph early Excels when I see them (including this ’86, this ’87, and this ’88). Hyundai did a fairly extensive cosmetic facelift for the 1990 Excel, and this generation was sold though the 1994 model year. The second-gen version was much more reliable than the first— it would have been hard not to improve upon the fantastically crappy 1986-89 Excels— but by that time just about everybody knew to stay away from the model. That makes these cars even harder to find than the initially-hot-selling first-gen Excels. Here’s a ’93 that I spotted at a self-service yard in Denver. Read More >
I stand firm in my belief that the first-gen Hyundai Excel was the worst automobile available in America during the last quarter of the 20th century, and that includes the wretched Yugo GV (if the Austin Rover Group had imported the Metro to these shores, however, the Excel might have been knocked from its dubious pedestal). You don’t see these cars on the street, and they’re very rare in junkyards, but I’ve managed to find three of the things this year. Read More >
Sales of Japanese cars are getting hammered in China, and Hyundai is one of the chief beneficiaries of their collapse.
Even when stacked up against other Lexus models, the front-drive ES has long been considered boring. Yet the Camry-based sedan has been a best-seller for Lexus and in its segment. For this reason, it has become a benchmark; just as every compact sport sedan targets the BMW 3-Series, every upper-midsize near-luxury sedan targets the ES. Well aware of the beads drawn on its back,
Toyota Lexus has redesigned the car for the 2013 model year. But has it raised the bar enough to keep Koreans with upward aspirations in their place?