Ford Motor Company chief executive officer and doomsday prophet Mark Fields thinks one million American jobs will be placed in peril if the country’s current fuel economy standards aren’t made more flexible.
At the start of the second real workday of the Trump administration, the leaders of the Detroit Three automakers marched into the White House for a breakfast meeting with their newly minted president.
We don’t know for sure what they ate, but we can relate what they talked about. This won’t come as a shock: investment. Specifically, assembly plant investment in the U.S., rather than Mexico.
Ford CEO Mark Fields, General Motors CEO Mary Barra and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Sergio Marchionne knew the landscape they were entering. Yesterday, Trump signed an executive order that pulled the U.S. out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership and moved to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement. Today, he signed an executive action to advance approval of the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines.
Deals. Besides perhaps eggs and toast, Trump wanted deals. Or, at this early point, promises and assurances at the very least. (Read More…)
The federal government doesn’t want to leave the issue of autonomous vehicle safety for states to decide, and may create new powers of oversight and approval for autonomous technology.
After president Barack Obama laid out his goals for the industry in a Pittsburgh Post-Gazette op-ed yesterday, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration issued a set of voluntary guidelines to manufacturers today, asking them to prove their vehicles are safe before entering public roadways. (Read More…)
Tesla’s dream of establishing a sales footprint in America’s auto manufacturing heartland is dead, at least for now, after Michigan lawmakers slammed the door on its direct sales bid.
The electric automaker’s application for a dealership license was denied after state representatives claimed it violated a law specifically designed to keep companies like Tesla out, The Detroit News reports. (Read More…)
The U.S. Department of Transportation wants to mandate speed-limiting devices on all tractor-trailers and buses in the country in a bid to save lives and fuel.
Announced yesterday by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the proposal would limit vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating of 26,000 pounds or more to 60, 65, or 68 miles per hour. Other speed limits could be considered, but that’s up to the public to debate. (Read More…)
R.I.P. victory lap burnouts? It sure looks that way.
NASCAR seems to have reached a tipping point in its tolerance of post-race victory burnouts, some of which damage the vehicle enough to interfere with the post-race inspection process. After an incident last weekend, the organization says it might have to lay down rules, Autoblog reports. (Read More…)
The dialogue from Tesla wasn’t all rainbows and puppies this week.
In oddly coordinated diatribes, CEO Elon Musk and his vice-president of business development took off the soft driving gloves and laid into their competition and the country’s regulators. The message? Put up, pay up, or shut up. (Read More…)
The world’s oldest automaker isn’t about to let regulators pry its diesel engines from its warm, German hands.
Mercedes-Benz is rolling out a new line of oil-burning engines that will surpass even the most stringent emissions requirements, AutoExpress reports.
So stingy are the new diesels, the automaker says they’ll pass looming European Union requirements that aren’t scheduled to go into effect until 2017. (Read More…)
It’s a great reason to ditch the bike and leave downtown Portlandia.
Oregon drivers will soon feel more wind in their hair, all thanks to the Oregon Department of Transportation and a dictate from the federal government. (Read More…)
He doesn’t have any firm numbers, but Barrie Kirk has a feeling.
The Canadian Automated Vehicles Centre of Excellence executive director just knows that once humans no longer have to pump the brakes and jerk the wheel of their autonomous vehicles, their ingrained habits will give way to exploits of a carnal nature.
After admitting it fudged fuel economy data for the past 25 years in Japan, Mitsubishi Motors wants the Environmental Protection Agency to know that its U.S. vehicles are A-OK.
The automaker claims it conducted an internal audit on vehicles from model year 2013 to present and contrasted that data with figures it had previously submitted to the EPA. The conclusion? The information’s fine. (Read More…)
Is it curtains for modified street cars on the racetrack, or will a compromise save the day?
The first meeting of a congressional committee tasked with deciding the fate of drivers who race modified street vehicles took place on March 15, and a glimmer of hope emerged, according to Jalopnik.
Earlier this month, a bipartisan bill — Recognizing the Protection of Motorsports Act of 2016 — was introduced in the House of Representatives and Senate in a bid to make converted race vehicles exempt from proposed Environmental Protection Agency regulations.
My late father told me that few people are as passionate as converts who’ve become disaffected. Some of the most vocal critics of the Elio Motors startup are former supporters, people who put down money on reservations, only to be disappointed by repeated delays in starting production.
Paul Elio most recently said production is slated to begin sometime late this year — that is if they can get the money to do it.
However, those disaffected folks were abuzz this week over a post at Green Car Congress that said a proposed rule change by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration would classify three-wheeled vehicles as automobiles. That would require Elio Motors’ three-wheeler to comply with all the same Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards of four-wheeled cars. (Read More…)
Automakers are pressing U.S. and European governments to find common ground on safety regulations to save them hundreds of millions of dollars in development costs, Automotive News is reporting.
Automakers have to change dozens of components on their cars at a huge cost to comply with different safety standards. The article said to make a popular U.S. car in 2013 comply with European safety standards cost $42 million for the automaker.
Trade talks have been been ongoing for 10 months and lobbyists are hoping one government will adopt the standards of the other, instead of creating a separate system.
The prevailing narrative seems to be that the United States lags behind Europe in addressing issues like fuel economy and emissions. U.S. regulatory standards are seen as not as rigorous as those used in the European Union. Cars sold in the European market get better gas/diesel mileage and put out less supposedly harmful carbon dioxide and other products of combustion. Now, the Economist is reporting that an environmental group is claiming that the Euro standards are a bit of a sham because the system in Europe allows automakers to game the testing procedures, resulting in poorer real-world performance than that indicated by testing.