In automotive terms, Volkswagen’s go-to MQB platform might end up having a lifespan somewhere between a Fox and a Panther.
Eager to stretch its meager dollars to Gumby-like proportions, the embattled automaker has announced that the platform underpinning most of its vehicles won’t die after two generations. Nah, let’s make it three, VW brand chief Herbert Diess said.
That means some vehicles, such as the stalwart Golf, will eventually ride on a platform old enough to drink in the United States. (Read More…)
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles sure loves its aging rear-wheel-drive LX platform, so much so that it might just keep it around for an extra two years.
According to Automotive News, sources claim the Dodge Charger, Challenger and Chrysler 300 will forgo their planned platform swap in 2018 and soldier on until at least 2020. If true — and FCA’s lack of allegiance to long-term product plans lends it credence — that means no major redesign for the models until 2021.
It’s good news for lovers of the current generation models, but it’s yet another sign that the Chrysler 300 may be doomed. (Read More…)
Mitsubishi has officially tied the knot with its savior, making Renault-Nissan chairman Carlos Ghosn the only automotive executive in the world (and possibly the galaxy) to head three companies.
The $2.29 billion deal gives Ghosn’s Renault-Nissan alliance a 34 percent controlling stake in Mitsubishi — a financial lifeline for the struggling, scandal-plagued automaker. Already, the company’s new chairman (and demoted former chair) have big, big plans for the Mirage maker.
Nissan-sized plans. (Read More…)
The regulator-friendly replacement for the recently departed Land Rover Defender is on the way, and has already begun on-road testing, the automaker’s CEO confirms.
Speaking to Britain’s Autocar, Jaguar Land Rover boss Ralf Speth says the new Defender adopts the lightweight aluminum architecture of the fifth-generation Land Rover Discovery.
The platform and design upgrade is good news for those hoping to see the model return to North America. (Read More…)
Ford’s full-size SUV will adopt aluminum architecture when the next-generation model arrives in 2017 as a 2018 model, Ford has told investors.
With less weight and a full redesign on tap, the automaker hopes to make the Expedition more attractive to buyers, as well as environmental regulators. (Read More…)
At a recent Nissan truck and SUV event in Carmel, a senior Nissan rep indicated there is zero chance the Smyrna, Tennessee based operation will alter its winning mid-size pickup formula.
When asked about the prospects of a unibody Frontier, Dan Passe, Senior Manager of Nissan Brand Communications, laughingly responded, “We don’t normally comment on future product, but a unibody Frontier is not happening.”
Honda is encountering strong demand for its recently launched, second-generation unibody Ridgeline, but Nissan will not follow Honda down the dedicated lifestyle truck path.
Forget the American displacement wars of the 1960s (and to a lesser degree, the 1990s). On the other side of the Atlantic, it’s all about who has the biggest all-electric lineup.
Volkswagen, hoping to wash its hands of diesel residue, announced three modular vehicle platforms that could spawn 30 electric vehicles across the company’s brand portfolio. Meanwhile, Mercedes-Benz wants a whole new sub-brand for its looming crop of EVs. (Read More…)
The venerable rear-drive LX platform will soldier on underneath the Dodge Charger into the next decade, according to sources close to the company.
A platform swap planned for late 2018 won’t come until after 2020, with a styling refresh serving to stretch the lifespan of the current generation, a Fiat Chrysler Automobiles insider told Automotive News. (Read More…)
Yesterday’s news that Nissan will buy a 34-percent controlling stake in Mitsubishi for $2.2 billion was the latest win for Carlos Ghosn, the man behind the Renault-Nissan Alliance of 1999 and possessor of many fingers in many pies.
Ghosn, CEO of both Nissan and Renault, inked the agreement with Mitsubishi as the other automaker battles a misleading gas-mileage scandal. At a price of 468.52 yen/share, Ghosn’s purchase of new shares was a smoking deal. Mitsubishi shares traded for 1,100 yen just last December.
What becomes of the two companies now? And how will Ghosn’s world-straddling empire benefit by snapping up beleaguered Mitsubishi? (Read More…)
A top Ram executive is heading to Brazil next week as the truck maker increasingly cozies up to the idea of adding a smaller pickup to its lineup.
The trip comes after Mike Manley, global head of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ Jeep and Ram brands, told The Detroit News that an “opportunity” exists in the U.S. midsize pickup market.
“I think that space is big enough, certainly, to have two offerings there,” Manley said at last week’s New York Auto Show, referring to the recently-announced Wrangler pickup and a hypothetical Ram model.