Latest auto news, reviews, editorials, and podcasts

By on January 23, 2020

What sports car has Aston Martin and TVR-adjacent looks, but is neither of those things? Why, it’s a Ronart! Let’s find out more about the coupe they called Lightning.

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By on January 23, 2020

This is a tidbit we certainly hope is true. After Cadillac was forced on the defensive for debuting a V-badged CT5 sedan widely seen as lacking in the power department, word comes that a wilder variant with a very familiar heart is just around the corner.

The brand is expected to stage a return of the powerplant that made the new model’s CTS-V predecessor great. Read More >

By on January 23, 2020

2019 Toyota RAV4 front quarter

Well, maybe the crowd can’t always be trusted. Over the last two hundred-plus years, there have been more than a few instances where our plurality voting system has yielded suboptimal victors in statewide and nationwide elections alike.

I’ve promised before that I’d stay away from politics here, so I’m not getting any more specific than that. I’m sure I’d piss off someone who doesn’t feel like hearing my thoughts on Franklin Pierce.

Anyhow, in 2019 Toyota pushed nearly half a million of these compact crossovers out the doors, making the 2019 Toyota RAV4 the fourth best-selling passenger vehicle in America — and if you exclude half-ton pickups from each of the Detroit Three, the best selling vehicle, period. But why?

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By on January 23, 2020

Image: Daimler AG

The countdown to Mercedes-Benz EQC production last year was preceded by stories about the model’s anticipated range and uncontroversial styling, but when the time came to get EQCs into the hands of buyers, the electric crossover had trouble leaving the launch pad.

Not long after reports emerged of the EQC’s U.S. arrival being delayed by a full year, a German outlet claims Mercedes-Benz has chopped its 2020 production target in half. Read More >

By on January 23, 2020

Carlos Ghosn Rogue Introduction - Image: Nissan

There’s certainly no love lost between former Nissan chairman Carlos Ghosn and the automaker he once helmed. After trashing the company’s sales performance in a Lebanon media conference earlier this month, during which he again accused Nissan of conspiring with Japanese officials to orchestrate his arrest, we know hear he gives the automaker maybe two or three years before it hits rock bottom.

Rock bottom” is where former CEO Hiroto Saikawa said his company was at last May. Maybe there’s still a ways to go. Read More >

By on January 23, 2020

Today’s question was not, in fact, sparked by your author’s recent visit to a decent but not terribly impressive half-price buffet, but by — go figure — a Bring a Trailer listing.

The model depicted was one of those things we didn’t think would ever return… until it did: a Jeep pickup, this one of the Comanche variety. The 4×4 straight-six ’87 model made yours truly wistful, as it was one of those vehicles that got away.

Sometimes when car-buying time comes around, the circumstances of your life dictate a more interesting than usual pool of choices. This was one of those times. Read More >

By on January 22, 2020

The FCA-PSA merger is progressing nicely. According to Fiat Chrysler CEO Michael Manley, the joint timeline established last month is totally feasible. Both companies hoped to get this settled before 2022; Manley now believes everything could be settled within the next 12 to 14 months.

The manufacturers have inked a binding agreement — worth an estimated $50 billion — to collaboratively prepare themselves to fend against slowing global demand and the unpleasantly high cost of developing greener vehicles to appease regional emission laws. They’re also attempting to establish an effective comprehensive strategy for the numerous auto brands involved in the deal. While we speculated about Chrysler’s future yesterday, over a dozen other marques that cater to fairly specific customer groups also need to be considered.  Read More >

By on January 22, 2020

Earlier this month, two GM engineers were arrested in Bowling Green, Kentucky for illegally street racing the new 2020 Chevrolet Corvette. Three Stingrays were present, but only two of the men were caught breaking the law. Kentucky State Police stopped Alexander Thim and Mark Derkatz on January 8th, on Lovers Lane in Bowling Green, for exceeding the road’s 45-mph speed limit.

Thim was busted doing 120 mph while Derkatz settled on a nice, round 100 mph, according to local outlet WNKY. However, even 26 mph over the limit would be enough to haul them into custody and set court dates that could end in a suspended license. It seems the two men were also fired from General Motors for hooning the mid-engined C8 before the general public was provided the opportunity. Read More >

By on January 22, 2020

A long-standing legal battle pitting Tesla against the state of Michigan has finally been resolved. It was announced Wednesday that the automaker’s 2016 suit against the state, which forbids the direct-sales model employed by Tesla, ended in a settlement a day earlier.

The result? A way for Michigan residents to own and conveniently service a Tesla in the notoriously protectionist state. Read More >

By on January 22, 2020

On Wednesday, President Donald Trump threatened to impose fresh tariffs on European automotive imports if the region can’t work out a trade deal with the United States. The good news is that the U.S. is already in the opening stages of negotiation with the United Kingdom, which is due to leave the EU at the end of January. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has even said a key benefit of Brexit is the ability to negotiate with countries like the U.S. independently.

Unfortunately, the rest of Europe doesn’t seem as eager to do business — encouraging Trump to fall back to tariff threats. But there’s clearly a retaliatory angle here. In 2018, the EU threatened punitive tariffs on traditionally American items like whiskey and motorcycles as a response to Trump’s intent to impose tariffs on steel and aluminum. He’s targeting French goods this time, mentioning 100-percent fees on imported luxury goods from France (champagne, handbags, etc.), additional levies on digital services, and a 25 percent duty on European cars.  Read More >

By on January 22, 2020

The catapulting of environmental issues to the forefront of public discourse has spawned many unlikely clashes between greens of different stripes. Climate protesters against CO2-free nuclear power generation, eco types versus high-speed electric rail, and now, angry Germans demanding Tesla stop stealing its water.

The electric automaker’s attempt to build a massive factory in the European country has hit a social roadblock. Read More >

By on January 22, 2020

2020 Ford Super Duty

It’ll not have escaped your notice that the pickup truck segment is a murderously competitive arena. In fact, if it were an actual arena, it would be much like the Roman Coliseum — or at least the upcoming 49er/Chiefs tilt in Miami — with bodies strewn across the playing field and the crowd roaring for more.

This helps explain why the Detroit Three are intent on beating each other over the head with towing and torque numbers that have climbed to dizzying heights. For 2020, Ford has unleashed a Super Duty pickup with available four-figure torque or a monster V8 the size of which hasn’t been produced by Motown in decades.

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By on January 22, 2020

2017 Toyota Corolla LE - Image: Toyota

A ghost in the machine that could render passive safety systems like airbags and seatbelt pretensioners useless has infected a range of Toyota models, sparking a global recall of roughly 3.4 million vehicles — some 2,891,976 of those in the United States.

While the suspected fault only rears its head in certain types of crashes, owners would probably prefer their airbags deploy in all major impacts. Read More >

By on January 22, 2020

Kia is no stranger to the Ace of Base series, given its propensity to stuff its cars and SUVs to the gunwales with features generally found on cars one octave higher in price. What is a stranger to the AoB pages is the 2021 model year. Welcome to the future, folks (there are still no hoverboards).

While the little Seltos hasn’t yet been added to Kia’s build-n-price tool, the media site has more than enough collateral with which to determine the base car’s level of kit. Does it continue Kia’s value-added ways? Will it be another hit for Kia? Is it colder than the surface of Hoth outside your author’s home? The TTAC Magic 8 Ball says “signs point to yes” for all of these questions.

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By on January 22, 2020

Cruise

Did General Motors’ self-driving arm reveal the future on Tuesday night? The automaker and its Cruise LLC subsidiary sure hope so, as both see big, big dollars coming from future autonomous ridesharing fleets.

The Cruise Origin unveiled in San Francisco last night is supposedly the vehicle (don’t call it a car) that will make that revenue stream possible. It certainly doesn’t look like a car, and the difference grows even greater when those side doors part. Read More >

Recent Comments

  • Right_Click_Refresh: LOL. Who are these chunky, vile looking things being made for?
  • Right_Click_Refresh: Man, I remember being all excited to see these debut because they were so darn futuristic. I...
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