QOTD: How Do You Fix Automotive Media?

This may be a bit inside baseball, but two big automotive media sites, CNET and The Drive, apparently let some writers and editors go recently.

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Honda Shares Images and Details for the 2024 Prologue EV

Honda has dabbled in EVs, but its first mass-market model doesn’t go on sale in the U.S. until 2024. The Prologue will be the inaugural Honda EV for our market, and today, the automaker shared details and images of the new SUV.

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Toyota Restarts Production of the BZ4X Three Months After Recall

Like it did with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, Toyota has dragged its feet on developing and shipping new EVs. It offers several hybrid and plug-in hybrid models, and there’s even a hydrogen fuel cell model for sale in California, but Toyota did not offer an EV in the United States until just a few months ago. That should have been cause for celebration at Toyota, but a recall just a month into being on sale likely squashed any excitement. Now, the automaker says it has fixed the problems and restarted production. 

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Abandoned History: Daewoo Motors, GM's Passport to International Sales (Part III)

After a few successful years building a trio of Toyota models (Corona, Publica, and Crown), Shinjin was forced to look elsewhere for a business partner. Toyota wanted to sell cars in China, and China forbade any company that sold products on its shores from having operations in South Korea. As expected, the government stepped in and assisted in a new deal between Toyota, Shinjin, and General Motors. 

The deal was finalized in 1972 and saw Toyota sell its stake in Shinjin directly to GM. The 50-50 GM-Shinjin venture saw the latter immediately renamed to General Motors Korea. GMK was immediately the new face of GM product distribution in South Korea. Let’s embark upon a series of particular business arrangements involving Shinjin that didn’t last very long.

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OPEC, Russia Align on Oil Production Cut

Saudi Arabia and Russia have agreed to cut oil production in a bid to drive prices higher.

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QOTD: What's the Cutoff on Drop-Top Weather?

My current test ride is a Lexus LC convertible. Or was, as it went back to its home on press-fleet island about an hour ago.

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Rare Rides Icons, The Nissan Maxima Story (Part VI)

It turned out that 1994 was a high point for the Nissan Maxima. The third-generation sedan was just about the ideal mix of driving dynamics, quality, luxury, and whiz-bang tech features. It was offered in well-equipped GXE trim for lovers of comfort, and sportier SE for Sports Enthusiasts (or something). After its introduction for the 1989 model year, Nissan made relatively few changes to its impressive sedan.

Sales were around 100,000 units in its first two years, and then around 85,000 for the next two years. But in its final model year of 1994 the third gen’s sales nearly doubled, to 163,138. It was time for a new Maxima in 1995. It was a generation that branched out to become other interesting vehicles but also started the model’s decline.

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Study: The Fifteen Most Overpriced Vehicles of 2022

With automotive prices skyrocketing these last two years, you may have found yourself waiting out the market until wealthy business magnates, unaccountable banking institutions, and multinational monopolies have had their way with it – hoping beyond hope that they’ll be a modestly priced car for you to live in when the economic dust finally settles.

But what if you can’t wait that long and need something today? While may not be able to steer you toward the deal of a lifetime, we do know which vehicles you might want to cross off your list thanks to a study targeting mainstream models seeing the highest dealer markups. Though, be warned, you’re still probably better off driving whatever you have today because the national average still has vehicles listed 10 percent above MSRP.


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GM Plans to Expand Production of the Chevrolet Bolt and Other EVs

Just a year after a massive recall that impacted tens of thousands of Chevrolet Bolt EVs, General Motors is expanding production of the electric hatchback and other models. The Bolt and Bolt EUV saw record-high sales through the third quarter, but the rising tide of GM’s production boost will lift several other models, too.

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The Right Spec: 2023 Chevrolet Colorado

It’s been more than a minute since we have delved into the world’s build & price configurators, an activity which surely litters the search history of every gearhead reading this site. Since our last installment, there has been no shortage of new vehicle introductions, including a few trucks which predictably tweak your author’s interest

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Automakers Report Q3 Sales, A Total Mixed Bag

If recent global events have taught us anything about the auto industry, it’s that unpredictability is the new norm. Gone are the days when one could confidently muse about the fortunes of one brand over another, replaced by erratic parts shortages and inconsistent volume of supply.


Still, some are weathering the storm better than others.

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Abandoned History: The Austin Allegro Story, a Fine Motorcar (Part I)

Today we embark on the story of the small British car made famous long after its demise by a certain BBC car program. It was ugly, poorly made, and had a nasty reputation while it was still on sale. We're speaking of course about the Austin Allegro. Prepare yourself for the forward-looking new car from British Leyland.

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Stellantis CEO Says Chip Shortage Nowhere Near Ending

Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares has suggested that the global semiconductor shortage will persist through 2023.

“The situation will remain very complicated until the end of 2023, then will ease a little,” he told French outlet Le Parisien over the weekend, adding that “semiconductor manufacturers have an interest in making business with us again, especially as they’re raising prices.”


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Maserati Unleashes MC20 and EV Power in New GranTurismo

Maserati’s a strange beast for Americans. It’s not quite as well-known as Ferrari, and when most people want to buy a high-powered Euro sports sedan or coupe, they head to BMW, Audi, or Mercedes. The brand is expanding, though, with vehicles in new segments, such as the Grecale compact SUV and MC20 supercar. One of its long-running models got a significant overhaul for 2023, which brought a more powerful twin-turbo V6 and an electric powertrain to the GranTurismo for the first time.

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California Officer Targets Stock Hyundai Elantra N for Loud Exhaust

Slap a loud exhaust and bootleg mods on your car, and your chances of having a lousy day increase exponentially. You’re far more likely to experience a breakdown, and that’s before the attention you’ll get from law enforcement. One owner of a Hyundai Elantra N in California recently had a terrible day, but not for the reasons you might think. 

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  • Dukeisduke I still think the name Bzzzzzzzzzzt! would have been better.
  • Dukeisduke I subscribed to both Road & Track and Car and Driver for over 25 years, but it's been close to 20 years since I dropped both. I tried their digital versions with their reader software (can't remember the name now), but it wasn't the same. I let it lapse after a year.From what I've seen of R&T's print version, it's turned into more of a lifestyle thing like The Robb Report. I haven't seen an issue of C/D in a while.I enjoyed both magazines a lot when I was subscribing. R&T for the road tests (especially the April Fools road tests), used car reviews, historical articles, and columns like Peter Egan's Side Glances and Dennis Simanitis's Technical Correspondence. And C/D for the road tests and pithy commentary, and columns like Gordon Baxter's, and Jean Shepherd's (that goes way back to the early '70s).
  • Steve Biro It takes very clever or amusing content for me to sit through a video vehicle review. And most do not include that.Tim, you wrote :"Niche titles aren't dying because of a lack of interest from enthusiasts, but because of broader changes in the economics of media, at least in this author's opinion."You're right about the broader changes in economics. But the truth is that there IS a lack of interest from enthusiasts. Part of it is demographics. Young people coming up are generally not car and truck fans. That doesn't mean there are no young enthusiasts but the numbers are much smaller. And even those who consider themselves enthusiasts seem to have mixed feelings. Just take a look at Jalopnik.And then we come to the real problem: The vast majority of new vehicles coming out today are not interesting to enthusiasts, are not fun to drive and/or are just not affordable.You can argue that EVs are technically interesting and should create enthusiasm. But the truth is they are not fun to drive, don't work well enough yet for most people and are very expensive.EVs on the race track? Have you ever been to a Formula E race? Please.And even if we set EVs aside, the electronic nannies that are being forced on us pretty much preclude a satisfying driving experience in any brand-new vehicle, regardless of propulsion system. Sure, many consumers who view cars as transportation appliances may welcome this technology. But they are not enthusiasts. I don't know about you, but I and most car fans I know don't want smart phones on wheels.There is simply not that much of interest to write about. Car and Driver and Road & Track are dipping deeper into nostalgia and their archives as a result. R&T is big on sponsoring road trips for enthusiasts - which is a great idea. But only people with money to burn need apply.And then there is the problem of quality in automotive writing. As more experienced people are let go and more money is cut from publications, the quality and length of pieces keeps going down, leading to the inevitable self-fulfilling prophecy.Even the output on this site is sharply reduced from its peak. And the number of responses to posts seems a small fraction of what it used to be. This is my first comment since the site was recently relaunched. I don't expect to be making many in the future.Frankly Tim - and it gives me no pleasure to write this - but your post makes me feel as though the people running this site have run out of ideas and TTAC's days may be numbered.Cutbacks in automotive journalism are upsetting. But, until there is something exciting and fun to write about, they are going to continue. Perhaps automotive enthusiasm really was a 20th century phenomenon..
  • THX1136 I think that the good ole interwebs is at least partially to blame. When folks can get content for free, what is the motivation to pay to read? I'm guilty of this big time. Gotta pay to read!? Forget it! I'll go somewhere else or do without. And since a majority of folks have that portable PC disguised as a phone in their pocket, no need for print. The amount of info easily available is the other factor the web brings to bear. It's perhaps harder now to stand out. Standing out is necessary to continued success.In an industry I've been interested (and participated) in, the one magazine (Mix) I subscribed to has become a shadow of it's former self (200 pgs now down to 75). I like print for the reasons mentioned by another earlier. I can 'access' it in a non-linear fashion and it's easily portable for me. (Don't own a smarty pants phone and don't plan to at the moment.)I would agree with others: useful comparison reviews, unique content not easily available other places, occasional ringers (Baruth, Sajeev, et al) - it would be attractive to me anyway. I enjoy Corey, Matt and Murilee and hope they continue to contribute here.
  • Daniel J I wish auto journos would do more comparisons. They do some but many are just from notes from a previous review compared to a new review. I see where journos go out to a location and test drive and review a vehicle on location but that does absolutely nothing for me without any comparison to similar cars. I also wish more journos spent more time on seat comfort. I guess that doesn't matter much when many journos seem to be smaller folks where comfort isn't as important. Ergonomics are usually just glossed over unless there is something very specific about the ergonomics that tick the journo off. I honestly get more from most youtube reviews than I ever do about reviews written on a page.