The Grand Tour's "Sand Job," Nothing to See Here, I'm Afraid

Just short of the eight-month mark, Amazon’s expensive The Grand Tour is back for its penultimate episode. Following last summer’s “ Eurocrash,” the maturely titled “Sand Job” sends the trio of presenters to an all-new location to tread upon content ground they’ve crossed many times previously. And though the special is sparse on content, it’s certainly coming with length.

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The Grand Tour's "Eurocrash," 45 Percent of a Car Show

On June 16th Amazon Prime released the latest episode of The Grand Tour, “Eurocrash.” With a runtime longer than every previous episode of the show (1 hour 47 minutes), “Eurocrash” sends the presenters to central Europe for a long road trip. This particular installment is a bit different than past voyages though: The connecting thread between the presenters, journey, cars, and the episode’s events goes missing. 

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The Grand Tour's "A Scandi Flick" Crashes, Bangs, and Contrives to Fill Its Length

It’s been nearly three years since The Grand Tour switched its format away from the elaborate traveling tent and to its all-special format. On Friday, Amazon released the fifth such special, and the first “post pandemic” episode (their term, not mine). In “A Scandi Flick,” the familiar trio heads across Scandinavia in three rally-inspired all-wheel drive sedans. It’s certainly not the show’s worst work, but it’s far from the best. You’ll need to suspend disbelief and leave your thinking skills in another room.

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Best Selling Cars Around The Globe: World May 2013 Roundup: Europeans Buy More Local

Finally the much anticipated Worldwide May 2013 Roundup is here! First a bit of overview of the largest markets with a very contrasted picture this month: China (+9%), the USA (+8%) and Brazil (+10%) are all up significantly while Japan (-9%), Germany (-10%) and Russia (-12%) all have full brakes on.

If last month the Toyota RAV4 was under the spotlight, in May we witness an interesting trend across a few European countries: whether it is a coincidence or not is something that will become clearer as the year goes by, but it would appear that European consumers have been very patriotic this month…

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World Car Sales Roundup May 2012: GM and Toyota Etios Make Headlines

Last week I wondered whether the Ford Focus could soon become the world’s most popular car… The response may lie in today’s article as it is time for our monthly appointment: the World car sales Roundup for May! You can check out previous world Roundups here for March 2012 (“Has the Hybrid era started for good?”), and here for April 2012 (“Big change coming from India”).

Not your thing? No worries, you can visit 164 countries and territories in my blog, go on, you know you want to!

So in March we talked hybrids, in April we talked India, this month my accent will be American, Chinese and South African…

Yep – all in one.

And yes. I have decided that Roundup doesn’t have a hyphen between Round and up. Because I can.

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May Auto Sales: Fewer And Smaller

May sales estimates are out, and the analysts are seeing slowdown in their crystal balls. Reuters reports that its survey of leading auto analysts projects a 12.6m SAAR (Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate) for the month, while Bloomberg is projecting a 12.1m rate. Wherever the actual number lands, it is likely to be the first month this year below a 13m SAAR, as Japanese supply interruptions as well as model changeovers lower overall supply. But, reports the WSJ [sub], there’s evidence that perceptions of undersupply are possibly keeping consumers away from showrooms as much as an actual shortage of vehicles. A Honda dealer who says he has plenty of cars for sale is quoted as saying

Traffic is down and I think it’s the media effect. People think there’s no cars and they think there’s no incentives, so they’re waiting.

And that’s not all: it turns out that May’s downbeat forecasts could have an even deeper cause…

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  • Michael Gallagher I agree to a certain extent but I go back to the car SUV transition. People began to buy SUVs because they were supposedly safer because of their larger size when pitted against a regular car. As more SUVs crowded the road that safety advantage began to dwindle as it became more likely to hit an equally sized SUV. Now there is no safety advantage at all.
  • Probert The new EV9 is even bigger - a true monument of a personal transportation device. Not my thing, but credit where credit is due - impressive. The interior is bigger than my house and much nicer with 2 rows of lounge seats and 3rd for the plebes. 0-60 in 4.5 seconds, around 300miles of range, and an e-mpg of 80 (90 for the 2wd). What a world.
  • Ajla "Like showroom" is a lame description but he seems negotiable on the price and at least from what the two pictures show I've dealt with worse. But, I'm not interested in something with the Devil's configuration.
  • Tassos Jong-iL I really like the C-Class, it reminds me of some trips to Russia to visit Dear Friend VladdyPoo.