Um, What? Survey Claims People Happier With Modern Car Buying Experience

A new survey from Cox Automotive is suggesting that people are relatively pleased with their trips to the dealership these days — at least compared to the last few years. According to the team that’s been crunching the numbers over at Automotive News, “Buyer satisfaction with the shopping experience from the research stage through delivery dipped to 66 percent in 2021.” Back in 2020, respondents claimed they were happy 72 percent of the time. But in 2019 Cox was only getting 60 percent of shoppers to say they had an okay time buying a vehicle.

The uptick in 2020 is obvious. Showrooms were devoid of customers, production shortfalls hadn’t yet become the norm, and dealers were selling just about everything at a discount — keeping prices low until 2021 sent them into the stratosphere. However, the outlet still framed it as a win against 2019, suggesting that consumers are more satisfied with their shopping experience than before the pandemic. It also claimed that people who purchased vehicles online, the no-haggle alternative to going to a dealership to argue in a small room, tended to be happier overall.

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Lincoln Now Sells More Product in China Than U.S.

After years of Ford unsuccessfully trying to court the Chinese market in the same way General Motors did, Blue Oval has finally hit an important milestone. For the first time ever, the Lincoln luxury brand has achieved more sales in China than in the United States.

On Thursday, Lincoln announced that it had delivered more than 91,000 vehicles in China in 2021 – representing an increase of 48 percent increase against 2020. Meanwhile, the brand managed to lose ground in North America with just 86,929 sales for last year. That’s the worst Lincoln has seen in over a decade, though the company has basically witnessed its share of the U.S. market seesawing in the wrong direction since the 1990s.

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Rare Rides Icons: The History of Stutz, Stop and Go Fast (Part I)
An early American car company, Stutz started out as a manufacturer of a race car for the road. However, much like its founder, the brand’s direction changed very quickly. Stutz followed a winding path to its creation and went through a wild ride of death and rebirth over several decades. We begin our story in Ohio in the late 1800s. Everything is probably dark and muddy.
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Tesla Accepting Crypto Again, Cybertruck Delayed

Tesla is taking another look at cryptocurrency, though this time it looks to be a goof as the currency in question is the meme-based Dogecoin. Though the joke could be on the market because the currency surged up by over 10 percent after Elon Musk made the announcement you could purchase “merch” with it.

Last year, Tesla said it would begin accepting Bitcoin. CEO Elon Musk had taken a visible interest in cryptocurrency and the automaker opted to take a chance on the one format that’s been able to break into the mainstream. Then the company changed its mind, with Mr. Musk referencing the sudden influx of media reports claiming it was bad for the environment.

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Toyota Shows GRMN Concepts at Tokyo Auto Salon

The amusingly-named Gazoo Racing arm of Toyota flaunted a few forward-looking wares at this week’s Tokyo Auto Salon, including a GRMN Yaris and the GR GT3 Concept plus its take on the new bZ4X all-electric vehicle. While the latter is part of the company’s trek toward carbon neutrality, the other machines underscore the importance of having corporate leadership that’s actually interested in cars.

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Supreme Court Blocks OSHA Workplace Vaccine Mandates

A divided U.S. Supreme Court has blocked the Biden administration’s vaccine-or-test rule that would have been enforced by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and impacted roughly 1.7 million automotive employees.

“Although Congress has indisputably given OSHA the power to regulate occupational dangers, it has not given that agency the power to regulate public health more broadly,” the court explained. “Requiring the vaccination of 84 million Americans, selected simply because they work for employers with more than 100 employees, certainly falls in the latter category.”

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Rare Rides Icons: The History of Imperial, More Than Just a Car (Part XII)

As we make our way into the 12th installment of Rare Rides Icon’s Imperial coverage, the third generation 1967 Imperial became the shortest-lived in the nameplate’s history. After the decade-long reign of the D-body, Imperial switched to the unibody C platform to cut costs, and move on from dated body-on-frame underpinnings. But it was an odd time to introduce a new car, as the C-body was no spring chicken when the Imperial debuted. More importantly, Chrysler was on the cusp of an entirely new styling direction: The Fuselage Look.

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Canada Joins Mexico in Trade Dispute Against United States

Mexican and Canadian officials have been dropping hints that they’re not all that enthusiastic about the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) since before Enrique Peña Nieto, Donald Trump, and Justin Trudeau all sat down to sign it in 2018. But just getting to that point required months of formal negotiations that rarely looked to be all that productive.

Sadly, things don’t seem to have changed now that the USMCA is in full effect. Last week, Mexico requested a dispute settlement panel under the terms of the trade pact to help resolve disagreements about the surprisingly contentious automotive content stipulations that determine whether or not vehicles and parts will be slapped with tariffs. Under the previous North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), 62.5 percent of the vehicle’s components had to be sourced from member nations to be considered tax-exempt. In an effort to spur localized production, USMCA increased that number to 75 and not everyone is thrilled with the updated content requirements with Mexico claiming it’s not even sure how to apply them. Canada now intends to formally sign onto Mexico’s complaint against the U.S. over their divergent interpretation of rules.

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Honda Teases New HR-V With Gaping Maw

The teaser game continues.

Honda has sent the automotive press two teaser images of the next-generation HR-V small crossover.

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Detroit Auto Show Allegedly Happening This Year

The North American International Auto Show is reportedly back on schedule, with NAIAS organizers announcing that the Detroit-based event will be returning on September 14th, 2022.

But we’ve been burned before. A central theme of the last two years has been the announcement of trade events before their subsequent cancellation or transition into a virtual approximation of the real thing where out-of-touch CEOs read things in front of poorly rendered backdrops.

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Second-Hand News: GM Investigates the Used Car Biz

Seeking to capitalize on a red-hot used vehicle market, General Motors has said it will launch an online service called CarBravo. Intended to challenge the likes of Carvana and CarMax by offering customers access to a large inventory of machines in stock at GM dealers across the country.

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Early 2022 Auto Sales Forecasts Are Disheartening

After a tough couple of years, consumers went into 2022 hopeful that unhinged automotive pricing and lean dealer lots would be a thing of the past. However, analysts and industry groups have gone from being cautiously optimistic just a few weeks ago to fairly sullen about the prospects of North American shoppers locating anything that could be considered a square deal.

Goldman Sachs recently issued a report that attempted to encapsulate the whole picture, citing sustained congestion at the ports, pandemic-related factory closures, market inflation, millions of people just dropping out of the workforce, and continued complications stemming from the semiconductor shortage. It estimated that vehicle pricing would fail to go down — and may even pitch up in the first half of 2022 — until all of the above issues have been addressed. But it was hardly the only group chiming in or suggesting that the hard times could last through 2023, as the goalpost for what should be deemed acceptable is moved yet again.

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Studly Moves: Installing Studded Winter Tires for the First Time In 20 Years

People tend to have some pretty strong opinions in this neck of the woods, ranging from thoughts about this year’s crop of NHL rookies to unsolicited sentiments about how Uncle Walt really should have added a ledger board when he built that new deck last summer. Hey, at least the thing is still standing. For now.

While the works of us are largely united on the subject of winter tires – it’s broadly accepted that driving aids such as pedestrian detection and lane centering and even the basics like stability control aren’t of much use if those four fist-sized patches of rubber on each corner of the car have less traction than pork at a PETA picnic – there’s still plenty of debate over the usefulness of studded winter tires. One group swears by them while the other swears at them.

This author was in the latter group – right up to the moment I bolted a modern set of studded tires to my Cherokee Trailhawk. Turns out, a lot has changed in two decades.

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Tesla Adding Track Mode to Model S Plaid

While it’s possible to catch a glimpse of a Tesla Model S staging at the local dragstrip, they don’t make many appearances at track days. EVs that weren’t designed specifically for racing circuits typically become undone after a few laps of sustained abuse, with Tesla’s first sedan being no different. Early examples of the Model S even failed to get around the Nürburgring when pushed to the limit, with touring car driver Robb Holland sharing videos of the model forcing itself into limp mode as components began overheating during a test run in 2014. Holland praised the car for its sublime road manners, though concluded it was ill-suited for serious racing.

Things are a little different today. Tesla now holds the fastest single lap of any EV to grace the Nordschleife and sells the Model 3 Performance with a dedicated track mode it plans on extending to Model S Plaid vehicles via an over-the-air (OTA) update. But can some fresh code and a little time really do what’s required to make the sedan a valid track vehicle when the preexisting hardware remains unchanged?

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Honda Civic is NACTOY Car of the Year, Ford Takes Other Two Categories

The North American International Auto Show, aka the Detroit Auto Show, isn’t taking place in January anymore. It’s set for a move to September.

But that didn’t stop the traditional North American Car and Truck of the Year award ceremony from taking place at [s]Cobo Center[/s] Huntington Place this morning.

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Toyota Introduces New Top-Dog Tundra

Builders of half-ton trucks in this nation are perpetually searching the upper limit of what customers are willing to pay for a new rig, with the moneyed set having plenty of choices when looking for a leather-lined and luxurious pickup. For the last few years, Toyota has had the 1794 Edition as an arrow in its quiver to compete against the crew from Detroit. Now, with their recently refurbished pickup truck, they’re going a step further. Meet the Toyota Tundra Capstone.

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Abandoned History: Chrysler and the Colt, Captive Economical Import Time (Part I)

For over 20 years Chrysler offered various Mitsubishi offerings as rebadged captive import vehicles in the North American market. For a handful of years, a Colt at your Chrysler-Dodge-Plymouth-Jeep-Eagle-DeSoto-AMC dealer was the exact same one you’d buy at the Mitsubishi dealer across the street. Let’s take some time and sort out the badge swapping history of Colt.

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Toyota Promises Solid-State Batteries By 2025

While electrification has felt like the only thing automakers are willing to talk about anymore, CES 2022 provided yet another opportunity to see which companies are willing to make the biggest promises when pitted against each other. This encouraged plenty of manufacturers to issue reminders of their existing EV timetables, though we’d be lying if we expected any company to adhere to them all that closely.

Then there’s Toyota. Despite being the largest automaker on the planet by volume, the Japanese company is famous for hedging its bets and not being all that secretive about it. When other manufacturers were vowing swift electrification at all costs, Toyota said they would need to continue producing hybrids if they were to realistically serve the public. But the business is still developing battery tech, with a vested interest in selling it off to rival manufacturers who are more willing to run with BEVs exclusively. It’s also been developing solid-state batteries, which it has confirmed are on track for delivery by 2025.

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Rare Rides Icons: The AMC Matador, Medium, Large, and Personal (Part III)

We left off in Part II of our AMC Matador coverage during the model lineup’s second year on the market. The Matador was working overtime by 1975, as AMC marketed their largest car to the intermediate and large car buyers. Unfortunately, things only went downhill from there.

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Rare Rides Icons: The AMC Matador, Medium, Large, and Personal (Part II)

AMC introduced its new Matador lineup into the very competitive intermediate (midsize) car market in 1971. It was a time when the company was making advances in build quality, streamlining, and an industry-leading all-encompassing warranty. And though the Rebel by any other name was selling decently, it wasn’t grabbing market share as AMC expected. Especially lackluster were sales of the Matador Coupe, a body style that was the top seller amongst its domestic competitors. As 1974 approached, AMC prepared to make some big changes to Matador, and introduce an all-new two-door.

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SsangYong Purchased by EV Conglomerate

While the Korean automaker has long been a punching bag thanks to unfortunate styling decisions in vehicles like the first Rodius, it has in fact sold its fair share of vehicles in different markets around the world. After being passed around by a variety of corporate overlords, it filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in December 2020.

Now, a takeover by a Korean EV company called Edison Motors has been approved by the suits in that country.

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Gas War: GM Now Sucking Up to California to Maximize Fleet Sales

General Motors has issued a letter to California Governor Gavin Newsom promising that the automaker is now fully committed to complying with the state’s aggressive emission regulations. This follows an earlier announcement from GM advancing plans to eliminate tailpipe emission from all light-duty vehicles by 2035 via electrification. The company had also increased global spending to develop EVs to $35 billion (USD) through 2025, which is roughly a third more than it had previously been targeting.

Of course, don’t think this has anything to do with altruism or formal commitments to some grand cause. California was simply planning to bar any automakers that hadn’t previously vowed to adhere to its strict regulatory policies from selling to state government fleets. While GM has been in the process of changing its allegiance, the business originally sided with automakers approving of the Trump administration’s regulatory revisions that were at odds with the region.

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Chip Shortage Claims an Unusual Victim: DriveTribe

DriveTribe, a social-media site that was focused on the automotive industry and car enthusiasm, has shut down.

The cause: The semiconductor chip shortage.

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Rare Rides Icons: Arrol-Johnston, First Four-wheel Brakes and Inventor of Off-road Vehicles (Part II)

In our introductory article on historical Scottish car maker Arrol-Johnston, we covered the company’s 1895 inception, its invention of four-wheel automotive brakes, and the financial difficulties that led it to become a subsidiary company under steel magnate William Beardmore. Today we finish with the brand’s rise to luxury and rather rapid demise.

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Toyota Nearing Federal EV Tax Credit Quota

Toyota Motor Corp. looks to be the next automaker that will have exhausted its allotment of EV tax credits for the U.S. market.

While the quota for $7,500 rebates has already been reached by Tesla and General Motors, Toyota is closing in with 190,000 plug-in sales of its own. The government has limited federally backed incentives to just 200,000 vehicles per manufacturer. Once the Japanese manufacturer reaches that limit, credits go into a cool-down period where it can continue benefiting from the full sum six months after the relevant quarter ends. From there, incentives will be halved for the next two quarters until the company is no longer eligible.

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In the UK, Shell is Converting Gas Stations to Charging Centers

Around these parts, and in most locations across the country, some fuel stations are busying themselves with squeezing a couple of EV charging stations along the perimeter of their property to supplement the gas and diesel pumps already in existence. Across the pond, one conglomerate is taking things a step further in some areas, planning wholesale changes in which they swap pumps for plugs.

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Report: Aston Martin Seeking New CEO, Among Others

It’s no secret that Aston Martin is in financial trouble. It went into 2020 in rough enough shape to require extensive restructuring, making the subsequent years more about survival than growth. Executive Chairman Lawrence Stroll has said he remains committed to saving the company and reviving its defunct Formula One team on more than one occasion since then. But he is clearly fighting an uphill battle.

Despite having achieved a few sales targets after spending most of 2020 shut down, Aston Martin continues facing product delays and is losing talent faster than it can replace it. Some of this has been attributed (fairly or not) to CEO Tobias Moers, who took over for Andy Palmer in August of 2020. But it looks like Moers may be leaving the company as well if the latest reports are to be believed.

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Rare Rides Icons: Isotta Fraschini, Planes, Boats, and Luxury Automobiles (Part IV)

Today we conclude the story of Isotta Fraschini, a company that started as a simple import business but rose quickly through racing successes to become one of the most highly regarded luxury car makers in the world. In our last entry, the Great Depression finished off IF’s last passenger car – the 8B – in 1934. Afterward, the company moved on to heavy truck manufacture alongside its marine and aeronautical engines. Said trucks were still in production when Isotta Fraschini launched a grand final attempt at a return to the luxury passenger car market.

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Notes From 2021: A Weird Year for American Auto Sales

It’s been a tough 12 months for a lot of people, including some dealer principals and their staff in the front office. Sure, more than a few of them are making bank by charging outrageous markups on the vehicles they do have on the ground but, by and large, overall sales numbers were all over the board for the majority of brands.

We’ve parsed through a few of the stats and unearthed a few notable gems, including how Dodge somehow managed to sell more Darts in 2021 than 2020 – despite it having ended production in September 2016.

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Catch a Buzz: Volkswagen Microbus Debut Due in March

It seems like we’ve been waiting forever, however, Volkswagen CEO Herbert Diess has announced over social media that the 2024 ID.Buzz Microbus will be revealed on March 9th. After a few weeks of the manufacturer teasing new details of the all-electric van, Diess shared some concept sketches of the model on Thursday before confirming the exact date when “the legend returns.”

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Vietnamese Company VinFast Shows 5 EVs at CES

At the dawn of automobiles, there were tremendously more brands from which to choose in America than there are today. With the rapid transition to all things electric, new companies are sprouting up faster than dandelions on your author’s lawn. Rivian, Lucid, Tesla – actually, when Tesla is the newest company in a particular group of examples, you know the landscape is changing rapidly.

Next out of the gate? A company from Vietnam called VinFast. Last night at CES, they hauled the covers off five different EVs, all of them shaped like crossovers ranging in size from S to XXL.

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Sony Launching Electric Car Company, Showcases Second Vehicle

During Sony’s keynote presentation at CES 2022, the company revisited the VISION-S 01 sedan it had previewed in 2020 only to follow up with the new VISION-S 02 crossover (above) and the announcement of Sony Mobility. While Apple has been flirting with building an automobile for years, Sony has actually decided to roll the dice by launching a new company and even has functional prototypes to help woo the public.

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Chevy Shows Off Fully Electric Silverado EV at CES Keynote

The truck arm of Chevrolet has been teasing its all-electric pickup for some time now, promising a rig that will do fisticuffs with the Ford F-150 Lightning and Rivian R1T, among others. While no one from GM’s keynote was on the ground at CES in Vegas (thanks, Covid), a packaged presentation spelled out all the details – including one surprising and exciting new trim level.

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Chevrolet Announces $30,000 Electric Equinox at CES 2022

General Motors CEO Mary Barra made a slew of product announcements during CES 2022, with the biggest being an update on the Silverado EV. However, Chevrolet will need to fill out its ranks if it’s to become a totally electrified brand as planned, resulting in the confirmation of electric variants of the Equinox and Blazer.

With modestly sized crossovers and SUVs still gaining ground in North America, Barra believes it makes good sense to electrify a couple in the assumption that the segment will have a larger pool of customers to draw from. But there’s precious little detail about either model, minus GM’s promise to launch both models by 2023 and sell the Equinox EV for around $30,000.

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Sales Stats: America's Automakers Weather a Stormy 2021

To say that headline is an understatement is akin to saying Vesuvius barely covered Pompeii. The last calendar year saw plenty of struggles for those trying to move metal, many of which resulted in empty dealer lots bereft of product to actually sell. A colleague in the industry told this author he had an up who strolled into his showroom loudly declaring “I’m looking for a ’22 Suburban,” to which my friend replied “Me too, buddy.”

Yeah, it was that kind of year.

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UPDATE: NASCAR Rejects Brandon Brown's Sponsor

We reported on Monday that NASCAR said driver Brandon Brown’s team had jumped the gun when it announced it had paired with a cryptocurrency that referenced the “Let’s Go Brandon” chant that has become popular in conservative circles as a sort of code for “f–k Joe Biden”.

Reports now indicate that NASCAR has rejected the sponsorship.

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Chrysler Going Electric By 2028, Airflow EV Introduced

Stellantis has announced plans to shift the Chrysler brand to an all-electric lineup by 2028, presumably because it doesn’t know what else to do with it anymore. Though, considering the make’s long and storied history, the change almost seems fitting.

When the French bought up Fiat Chrysler Automobiles from the Italians in 2021, the namesake brand had already been losing steam under the Germans. But they were adopting the company after years of mismanagement from Americans, who had taken the marque from being arguably the most luxurious and technologically advanced the United States had to one that had to be saved from bankruptcy by government intervention on more than one occasion. Suffice it to say, Chrysler has enjoyed some of the sweetest highs and pathetic lows imaginable. But it always seems to rise from the ashes thanks to some innovative decision that ultimately helps redefine the industry — which is why Stellantis is leading its own EV offensive by reviving the Airflow name.

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Don't Need No Stinkin' Badges: Lexus to Drop Logo, Add Billboards

Well, at least on the rear of their vehicles. According to a recent interview with another industry outlet that rhymes with Rotor Blend, the Lexus brand will begin appending chrome-plated L E X U S billboards to the rumps of their vehicles instead of the famed round stylized ‘L’ logo, a badge which will continue to appear on steering wheels and enormous grilles.

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Mercedes-Benz Vision EQXX: 1000km (621 Miles in Freedom Units) of All-Electric Driving

Electric vehicles are here, like it or not, and car companies have turned their attention (and vast resources) to making sure range anxiety is a thing of the past. Since that concern is a major hurdle for most Americans, the appearance of a Mercedes-Benz machine with a four-figure range is A Big Deal.

Well, four figures in metric measures, anyway.

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Toyota Is Now America's Best-Selling Automaker

Japanese automaker Toyota Motor Corp looks set to embarrass American automakers on their home turf by ending the year as the U.S. market’s top-selling brand for 2021.

Toyota had previously reported it moved 688,813 vehicles in the United States from April to June, outperforming General Motors and setting the stage for the rest of the year. At the time, the domestic manufacturer claimed its numbers were down due to the global semiconductor shortage that continues to disproportionally impact American automakers. While there are a few sound logistical reasons for that, the chip deficit also becomes a convenient excuse for brands that cannot seem to get their general supply chains under control. No matter how you slice it, GM looks to have screwed up managing inventory and Toyota is picking up the slack.

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Ford Lightning Build and Price Tool Now Live

We don’t often cover it when a manufacturer’s build and price tool goes live, because it’s typically minor news, but we’re making an exception for the much-hyped Ford Lightning.

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Report: Toyota to Rollout New Operating Software By 2025

Toyota is allegedly on the cusp of launching a comprehensive driving software that incorporates everything from temperature control to autonomous driving. The Arene operating system (OS) will be proprietary to the automaker and assume duties that exceed multimedia management systems like Mercedes’ MBUX. Toyota’s software is supposed to be all-inclusive, much like the operating system found in Tesla products, and set itself up for hands-free motoring.

However, it would be a lie to claim that really matters, since automakers cannot help but promise that any new line of code is another step closer to driverless vehicles and chock full of artificial-intelligence goodness. For example, Volkswagen’s new software stalled the launch of multiple vehicles and resulted in an unresponsive, buttonless interface that has continued causing problems on its latest products. But VW will be the first ones to tell you it’s the only pathway toward widespread electrification, vehicular connectivity, self-driving, and commercial enlightenment.

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Abandoned History: The Vehicle Production Group and Its MV-1, Accessible Mobility MPV

Historically speaking, the handicap accessible vehicle market in North America was catered to by aftermarket companies, who’d convert standard passenger vehicles (usually larger vans) to be accessible. But in the early 2000s, a couple of entrepreneurs had a new idea: A commercial vehicle designed from the get-go as accessible. Let’s talk about the Vehicle Production Group, it’s a bit of a wild ride.

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Rare Rides Icons: The History of Imperial, More Than Just a Car (Part XI)

We return once more to Imperial today and find ourselves in 1967. The earlier portion of the Sixties was a turbulent time for Imperial, as the D-body soldiered on from 1957 through 1966 model years as the Imperial marque’s second-generation car. In 1967, Imperial’s lead designer Elwood Engel managed Imperial’s transition to a new shared platform. Say hello to C.

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Tesla Recalling 475,000 Cars Over Camera, Hood Latch Issues

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has confirmed that Tesla will be recalling 356,309 examples of the Model 3 presumed to be suffering from a defect that can cause the rearview camera to malfunction. Another 119,009 Model S sedans will also be recalled over a problem pertaining to the frontal hood latch.

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The Right Spec: 2022 BMW 2-Series Coupe

We’re wading into dangerous waters with this one, since the BMW jihad fan base generally has strong opinions about the particular spec of a vehicle, spewing chassis numbers through their adenoids like water from a fire hose.

Still, we know a thing or two about cars around here, leading us to give it a go. The 2-Series (officially hyphen-free but it looks weird that way) has recently been refurbished and while it does have a set of too-small taillamps, it at least avoids the Bugs Bunny grille slapped on its older cousins.

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Pay Up: Average Price of a Used Car in America Shockingly Close to $30,000

It will surprise exactly zero of our readers that prices of second-hand vehicles are through the roof. A constricted new car supply which leads to a dearth of trade-ins has contributed to customers facing the prospect of paying exorbitant sums for previously loved vehicles. Now, a new stat from Edmunds.com puts a precise number on the issue.

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Auto Dealers Report 2021 Profits Will Break Previous Record

With so many articles discussing how poor automotive sales have been through 2021, one could be forgiven for thinking this was going to be a hard year for anybody owning a dealership. However, the reality of the matter is that it’s a seller’s market and those who can sell are making a killing off everyone else’s misery.

The National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) has reported that the ongoing deficit of product has helped the average store rake in more money than they did in 2020, breaking the previous twelve-month profitability record. Today’s average dealership is reporting a net pretax profit of about $3.38 million through October for 2021. That’s more than twice what was tallied within the same timeframe last year and really goes to show how much money can be made when the customer’s needs are the only items being discounted.

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Crypto Meme Not Yet Confirmed as NASCAR Sponsor

NASCAR driver Brandon Brown — he of the “Let’s Go Brandon” fame — has secured sponsorship from cryptocurrency meme coin LGB.coin.io for his 2022 Xfinity Series ride.

However, there’s one problem — NASCAR has yet to approve it.

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GM Files to Trademark Electra Name for Buick

General Motors is hoping to re-up the Electra name for Buick as per a December filing with the United States Trademark and Patent Office (USTPO). While many of you will recall the model as another ho-hum sedan from the 1990s with the potential to be graced with a 3800 motor, the car actually dates back to a time where tailfins were all the rage and there was no such thing as too much chrome.

Though it’s unlikely that the name would be affixed to anything burning gasoline in the modern context. Buick has already shown an all-electric concept wearing the Electra name at the 2020 Beijing auto show and it would be the mother of all twists to snub it.

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Housekeeping: Merry New Year

2021 is finally ending. We lurch into 2022 still dealing with a global pandemic, and supply-chain shortages, and climate change, and everything else, but we can at least take three days to pause, watch a ton of college and NFL football (Go Irish, Bear Down), drink cheap champagne, and hope that 2022 is better — and brings about the end of the pandemic phase of COVID.

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Rare Rides Icons: The AMC Matador, Medium, Large, and Personal (Part I)

The American Motors Matador line was many things to many people during its run from 1971 to 1978. Built domestically and abroad, Matadors occupied more than one size class, a broad range of price points, and were even dressed in fashionable luxury garb for a while. Come along as we explore the world of Matador.

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These Are the Best New Cars for OVER $90,060

Before we get to this list of “best luxury cars”, I feel like you might be wondering about that headline. Why $90,060? I chose that number because the ceiling for my “ best cheap cars” post was based on half the average selling price of a new car (more or less), and arbitrarily decided to keep going with that theme and set the floor for this list at approximately twice the current average.

As for the list, itself, I’ll try to answer it the same way you’d probably answer your rich friends if they asked you for help picking a new car: With a question of my own.

No, it’s not anything as pedestrian as, “What do you plan on using it for?” That kind of stuff is for the poors. For the rich people, the real question is: Who are you trying to impress with it?

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More Western Leaders Call for the End of Private Vehicle Ownership

If there’s anything that’ll get my stomach into a twist, it’s the government talking about the merits of reducing people’s ability to own things. Fortunately, the 36-hour flu I just experienced made me nigh-invulnerable and someone had forwarded me the latest on what U.K. Parliamentary Under-Secretary for the Department for Transport Trudy Harrison had to say about personal vehicle ownership. She’s very keen on public transpiration but not so interested in the plebian masses having access to their own, individual modes of transport.

Earlier this month, she told a virtual audience at shared transport charity CoMoUK that the United Kingdom needed to move away from “20th-century thinking centered around private vehicle ownership and towards greater flexibility, with personal choice and low carbon shared transport.”

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We're the TTAC Staff. Ask Us Anything.

Today is the last day of the year for us, and it’s a slow news day following a slow news week, so we’re inviting any of youse who are hanging out online to spend some time chatting with us.

And to ask us (almost) anything you want.

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McLaren Artura Delayed Again for the Usual Reasons

McLaren has confirmed that it will be delaying the launch of its new hybrid supercar, the Artura, until the summer of 2022. Slated to commence deliveries by the end of 2021, the company has stated that the chip shortage has forced a revised timeline.

The semiconductor shortage has been a popular excuse for automakers the world over and may still be valid. Chip manufacturers have continued prioritizing the production of newer, more advanced components yielding higher margins. However, these units typically do not make their way into automobiles and are more commonly found in smaller electronic devices.

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Rare Rides Icons: Isotta Fraschini, Planes, Boats, and Luxury Automobiles (Part III)

Isotta Fraschini advanced very quickly from its humble roots as a French car importer. Through racing recognition and the utmost attention to quality and engine technology, IF became one of the most well-regarded luxury car companies in the world. The firm’s first two large cars the Tipo 8 and 8A were considered on par with Rolls-Royce, and the company found buyers in the elite of America and Hollywood stars.

But the company’s fortunes changed in 1929 as The Great Depression bowed its head, and put a big dent in the ultra-luxury car market. The 8A concluded its run from 1924 to 1931 with under 1,000 total sales. IF was immediately ready with another super lux car as the world was still deep in The Great Depression, but company ownership attempted to pursue other passenger car avenues. And IF might’ve prospered were it not for fascist government intervention.

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QOTD: How Can Ford Attract Younger Mustang Buyers?

Poking around ye olde Internet today, I came across this Motor1 piece that aggregates an interview that MuscleCarsandTrucks did. The interview is with Ford’s Mustang marketing manager, Jim Owens, and concerns, at least in part, the graying hairs of the average Mustang buyer and how Ford can get younger folks behind the wheel of the venerable pony car.

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Some Car Companies Hit the Brakes on CES

To say that large events are spitting and sputtering their way back into action would be massively underselling the challenges facing promoters and showrunners in the age of Covid variants and travel-related headaches. While some car-related sporting events have been carried out – witness the various and sundry major auto races this year – indoor events like trade shows continue to have challenges.

The latest? CES in Vegas. After becoming the defacto replacement for the Detroit Auto Show at this time of year, more than a few carmakers have decided to pull out of the event after promising big reveals this year at one of the world’s largest tech shows.

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Honda Trademarks ADX Name for Acura Brand

Honda has filed to trademark ADX with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), presumably so it can use the name for an upcoming luxury model. While Honda has previously sold vehicles with alphanumeric monikers ending in the letter X, that’s literally Acura’s entire lineup and it’s supposed to be delivering a few new models to round out its rather limited selection.

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  • Inside Looking Out Why EBFlex dominates this EV discussion? Just because he is a Ford expert?
  • Marky S. Very nice article and photos. I am a HUGE Edsel fan. I have always been fascinated with the "Charlie Brown of Cars." Allow me to make a minor correction to add here: the Pacer line was the second-from-bottom rung Edsel, not the entry-level trim. That would be the Edsel Ranger for 1958. It had the widest array of body styles. The Ranger 2-door sedan (with a "B-pillar", not a pillarless hardtop), was priced at $2,484. So, the Ranger and Pacer both used the smaller Ford body. The next two upscale Edsel's were based on the Mercury body, are were: Corsair, and, top-line Citation. Although the 1959 style is my fav. I would love a '58 Edsel Pacer 4-door hardtop sedan!
  • Lou_BC Stupid to kill the 6ft box in the crewcab. That's the most common Canyon/Colorado trim I see. That kills the utility of a small truck. The extended cab was a poor seller so that makes sense. GM should have kept the diesel. It's a decent engine that mates well with the 6 speed. Fuel economy is impressive.
  • Lou_BC High end EV's are selling well. Car companies are taking advantage of that fact. I see quite a few $100k pickups in my travels so why is that ok but $100k EV's are bad? The cynical side of me sees car companies tack on 8k premiums to EV's around the time we see governments up EV credits. Coincidence? No fooking way.
  • EBFlex "I'd add to that right now, demand is higher than supply, so basic business rules say to raise the price."Demand is very low. Supply is even lower. Saying that demand is outstripping supply without providing context is dishonest at best.