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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  • MRF 95 T-Bird The hideaway headlamps on these and other Ford vehicles of the era could have issues mostly vacuum related. Usually the vacuum hoses that ran to the actuators would deteriorate. The “coffee can” reservoir which was mounted in the front header was rarely an issue because it was protected from the elements. The other coffee can reservoir used for the HVAC controls and actuators and mounted under the passenger side wheel well had a tendency to rot away. I once replaced one on my 70 Mustang when I noticed that the vents were acting janky. Later model Fords like Fox bodies used a durable plastic globe shaped one. The radio on these 69-70 full-size Fords mounted on the left side of aircraft style instrument cluster within the drivers touch probably disappointed many young people. “Mom will you change the station?” “Andy Williams is so square”.
  • MichaelBug For me, two issues in particular:1. It can be difficult for me to maintain my lane on a rainy night. Here in southeastern PA, PennDOT's lane markings aren't very reflective. They can be almost impossible to make out when wet.2. Backing out of a parking space in a lot with heavy pedestrian traffic. Oftentimes people will walk right into my blind spot even if I am creeping back with my 4-way flashers blinking. (No backup camera in my '11 Toyota Camry.)Michael B 🙂
  • Tagbert When you publish series like this, could you include links to the previous articles in the series so that we can follow through? Thank you. Edit: now I see a link embedded in the first paragraph that goes to the previous story. It wasn’t clear at first where that link went but now I understand.
  • DungBeetle62 When you're in one of these, you life in a state of constant low-level nervous about 90% of the time. But that other 10% kinda makes up for it.
  • Garrett Instead of foisting this problem on the car companies and the people who buy cars, make those who possess liquor licenses and those who purchase alcohol take on the economic cost of this problem.