Every country has its linguistic eccentricities. The Brits continue to call transport trucks “lorries” (and then there’s all that “boot” and “bonnet” stuff), while other locales adopt their own unique terminology for the same object or thing.
The first-generation Buick LaCrosse was sold as the Allure in Canada because “lacrosse” is Quebecois slang for something to which an entire Seinfeld episode is dedicated.
Australia is no different, but many people Down Under aren’t happy with a new term that is creeping into the country’s vernacular: “truck.” (Read More…)
There’s sad news from Down Under. No, Paul Hogan is still alive, and no, dingoes didn’t get into a local kindergarten.
The last Ford Falcon Ute rolled off the assembly line in the Melbourne suburb of Broadmeadows today, ending 55 years of continuous production, Car Advice reports. The death of the FG X Falcon Ute heralds the looming demise of Australian Ford assembly, and leaves just one (doomed) ute in the marketplace of the country that invented it. (Read More…)
Update: Automotive News is reporting General Motors is now focusing “on the higher end of the market while the Japanese firm sticks to selling vehicles for everyday commercial purposes,” strongly hinting that GM is the one that broke off the collaboration. We’ve added detail below.
After announcing a new bromance with Mazda just over a week ago, Isuzu is calling it quits with its old beau General Motors.
(Or maybe GM caught Isuzu cheating behind its back. Who knows? The relationship dynamics at play between automakers are difficult to flesh out.)
Regardless, midsize trucks — badged as both Isuzus and Chevrolets — will be no more in the Land of Smiles. The duo, which has a truck plant each in Thailand, will decouple their R&D efforts as they move toward engineering new global midsize pickups.
If you’ve ever though the backseat and trunk in your 3 Series would be a perfect place to put a long, flat cargo space for hauling dirtbikes, start planning a move to Australia.
According to Motoring, the German automaker is considering fielding a pickup variant Down Under — a move once thought impossible, but now looks much more likely, thanks to Bimmer’s rival. (Read More…)
As U.S. customers await the unannounced Santa Cruz-like sort-of ute they’ve been promised for some time, Australia is getting traction from Hyundai on a genuine midsize pickup.
Following much lobbying from down under, Hyundai Australia’s chief operating officer Scott Grant told Car Advice that company brass in South Korea are slowly coming into agreement on the need for a bona fide pickup, but fans will have to be patient. (Read More…)
A diesel version of the Mazda3 is dead in Australia, reports CarAdvice, leaving just the gasoline-powered version of Mazda’s compact on the market.
The removal of the diesel model comes ahead of a mid-cycle refresh that will bring Mazda’s hatchback and sedan inline visually with the refreshed Mazda6 and CX-5, and the new CX-9.
A number of circumstances played into Mazda’s decision to discontinue the compression-ignition option.
One supermarket’s loss was Ehren Thompson’s gain.
The Sydney, Australia man was able to use a 77-pound wheel of Parmigiano Reggiano cheese he found at a local grocery store to get himself into a used Peugeot hatchback, according to BuzzFeed News. (Read More…)
It beats hooning your mom’s Honda Odyssey.
A teenager took the top spot in the first three races of the Toyota 86 Racing Series this past weekend, beating back the 38 entrants in the fledgling event.
Former kart champion Cameron Hill’s win is exactly what Toyota had in mind when it crafted the three-year series. Designed as an entry point for up-and-coming drivers, the series pits up to five professional drivers against a field of amateurs, with training being top of mind. (Though a $125,000 prize pool sweetens the deal). (Read More…)
Ford Motor Company probably wishes it had gone with a CVT.
After weathering years of complaints about the performance of its six-speed PowerShift dual clutch transmission, Australia just added to the misery with a class-action lawsuit, CarAdvice reports.
The suit, which alleges the transmissions are unsafe, concerns 2010–2014 Ford Fiesta and Focus models. (Read More…)
Aussies are clearly not in love with the Volkswagen Beetle. The company will scrap sales of the slow-selling vehicle in Mel Gibson’s homeland later this year.
According to Caradvice, Australian sales of the Beetle fell to just 240 units in 2015, a small fraction of what Volkswagen enjoyed when the first-generation New Beetle arrived on its shores in 2000. In contrast, Volkswagen sold 22,667 Beetles in the United States and 2,347 in Canada during 2015, according to GoodCarBadCar.net.