The Truth About Cars » DetN The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. Fri, 18 Jul 2014 20:52:49 +0000 en-US hourly 1 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 (The Truth About Cars) 2006-2009 The Truth About Cars The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. The Truth About Cars » DetN Americans Drive Less, Keep Cars Longer Tue, 21 Feb 2012 16:09:48 +0000

Travel on U.S. roads fell to its lowest level since 2003, while Americans hold on to their cars longer than ever, two Detroit newspapers report to the horror of their carbuilding readers.

Last year, U.S. drivers logged 35.7 billion fewer miles over 2010 — down 1.2 percent — to 2.963 trillion miles. That’s the fewest number of miles since 2003, when Americans drove 2.890 trillion miles, the Federal Highway Administration told the Detroit News.

What’s keeping people off the streets? Says the DetN:

“Stubbornly, high gas prices and an economic slowdown since 2008 have convinced some Americans not to drive as much.

At the same time, people are holding on to their cars longer than ever. The research firm R.L. Polk told the Detroit Free Press that new vehicle owners kept their an average of 71.4 months, or nearly six years, the longest in the eight years Polk has done the survey, and nearly two years longer than the average life of ownership in 2003.

The average age of a vehicle on U.S. roads reached a record 10.8 years.

Looking for reasons, the Freep heard a familiar tune:

“Consumer spending remains conservative in a still-weak job market with relatively high unemployment rates. Many buyers have longer-term financing options to secure more affordable payments. In addition, vehicles produced in recent years have been more durable and reliable than their predecessors.

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Quote Of The Day: The DetN Can’t Count Thu, 20 Jan 2011 12:52:25 +0000

“About 13.8 million vehicles were sold in 2010 in China compared with 11.6 million in the United States.”
The Detroit News

Yesterday, we had a short seminar on Chinese new car statistics. Apparently, it was needed. Too bad the Detroit News, Motor City’s hometown newspaper, skipped class. Message to the DetN:  It’s 18 million vehicles. 18,264,700 to be exact.

So where do the 13.8 come from? We know: In 2010, Chinese passenger car sales reached 13.76 million. However, that number excludes “commercial vehicles.” Common mistake. But shouldn’t happen to a Detroit paper.

Dear DetN: If you don’t count the Chinese “commercial vehicles”, then you can’t count the U.S. “trucks” either. You really don’t want to do that.

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The Sky Is Falling: DetN Disses GM Sun, 02 May 2010 00:00:37 +0000

The Detroit News, by some regarded as the in-house organ of GM, has issues with GM. The DetN doesn’t like GM’s latest TV ad (“some future models shown”) in which Ed Whitacre proclaims that GM paid back its “loan, in full, with interest, years ahead of schedule.”

The “GM ad glosses over the reality” complains the headline of the article in which the former unofficial organ of GM rips Whitacre a new one. Says the DetN: “He’s technically correct because he clearly uses the word “loan.” Otherwise vague? Yes. Misleading? Depends on your perspective.”

Then, the sky is falling once again. The DetN gives a lot of column inches to Darell Issa, despite the fact that Issa “represents GM rival Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. in Congress.” At least as far as the DetN is concerned. Nonetheless, he is quoted suchly:

“We are concerned that GM, under your leadership, has come dangerously close to committing fraud, and that you might have colluded with the United States Treasury to deceive the American public,” Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., wrote Whitacre on Thursday. “If someone relies on your statements in the future … your false statements may expose GM to millions of dollars in damages, further reducing the value of the taxpayer-owned company.”

Since when is the DetN quoting a Toyota representative to prove their point? In closing, the DetN remarks:

“The ads, coming before first-quarter numbers are due to be released in mid-May, signal a readiness to risk riling politicians or tweaking competitors. Whether that’s gutsy or dumb will depend on how difficult competitors and politicians choose to make things for GM, especially if Whitacre & Co. give them more material. Bottom line: American taxpayers still own 61 percent of GM, worth about $43 billion. When — if — that all ever gets paid back, you’ll know about it. “

Come on guys, Treasury has signed off on the ad. What did Whitacre do to make the DetN mad? Did he forget to put an ad in the DetN?

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Outrage! NHTSA, Republicans And Gore Family Revealed As Closet Prius Drivers Thu, 18 Feb 2010 10:06:58 +0000

Everybody promised this would not be a repeat of the Japan bashing of the 80s. But when the DetN starts outing lawmakers and administrators in DC for driving Toyotas, then it’s open season. Let them dawgs out …

“The vaunted Toyota Prius is everywhere in Washington,” reports the breathless Detroit News after exhaustive traffic analysis.

The DetN found EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson guilty of owning a 2008 Prius. The investigation revealed NHTSA chief David Strickland being in possession of a “very babied” 2005 Prius, with intent to drive.

Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., one of Toyota’s harshest critics, was found with a veritable cache of four Prius cars. John McCain, was caught having bought a Prius for his daughter. At this point, the DetN stopped counting, adding that “many other senators drive the Prius, including Richard Lugar, R-Ind.” See? Republicans are consorting with the enemy, and no wonder that NHTSA was dragging their heels, just look at what they drive.

In the interest of fair and balanced reporting, the DetN pointed out that “former Vice President Al Gore’s son was arrested in July 2007 on drug charges after getting stopped going more than 100 mph in his blue Prius. Perhaps his car’s accelerator was stuck.” Gore may be a Dem, but he’s also against global warming and the ozone hole, so let’s smear him while we are at it. At least, the DetN didn’t make the same “mistake” Fox News had made …  Ah, come on, the bad apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.

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