By on March 13, 2020

2016 Dodge Durango Grille and Badge, Image: © 2016 Bark M./The Truth About Cars

Model names usually remain the property of their original owner. The trademark gets renewed again and again, long after the vehicle bearing the name shuffles into retirement, lest it fall into someone else’s hands.

In this case, three automakers have placed the name somewhere on a vehicle.

That name is Hornet, and recent U.S., Canadian, and Mexican trademark applications show that Fiat Chrysler — and especially the Dodge brand — wants to keep it secure. But why? (Read More…)

By on January 27, 2020

Despite offering a choice of battery sizes, Rivian’s R1T pickup, scheduled for production late this year, was not revealed under a banner of affordable green motoring. Nor was the R1S SUV that followed it. The Michigan-based startup’s first vehicles instead wowed onlookers with their tech prowess and capability — four hub motors, an innovative platform, and a maximum range of 400 miles — and prices that were fairly comparable with existing high-zoot pickups and SUVs.

Carrying a starting price of $69,000 at its debut, the R1T is now said to be in line for a price drop. Same goes for the R1S. (Read More…)

By on January 24, 2020

Image: Volvo Cars

Volvo’s XC90 midsize crossover is both a tony vehicle and a solid seller, but the push into electrification that began with the crossover’s second generation will be completed in its third.

The automaker has announced that the third-gen XC90, which arrives in 2022, will ditch gas-only powerplants for good. (Read More…)

By on January 17, 2020

Tesla

While we’re on the subject of American (or somewhat American) automakers looking to beat the Chinese at their own EV game, Tesla has announced a new direction in that massive electric vehicle market.

With Model 3s now rolling into buyers’ hands from its just-opened Shanghai assembly plant, the automaker has turned its eye to the lower end of the market. (Read More…)

By on December 30, 2019

A fairly stylish electric concept car revealed this past year by Kia will become a reality in 2021, the automaker’s European chief operating officer claims. The Kia Imagine, a high-riding, fastback C-segment offering, will be put into production on a dedicated platform not only because the company feels it’s a potentially successful vehicle, but because it has little choice in the matter.

Come 2020, the European Union plan to level punitive fines on any automaker caught breaking its increasingly stringent fleetwide emissions standards. It’s a case of go electric, or pay up. (Read More…)

By on December 26, 2019

Suffice it to say this rumor won’t go over well with TTAC readers, assuming we’ve gauged their interests and allegiances right.

While it’s well known that Ford has designs on alliance partner’s Volkswagen’s dedicated electric vehicle architecture, a product that may spring forth from the alliance’s R&D loins might cause Ford naysayers to double down on their criticism of the Blue Oval’s product direction. (Read More…)

By on October 23, 2019

Image: BimmerPost

A photo supposedly taken on a BMW factory floor and uploaded to BimmerPost appears to show a production-ready passenger car with a face only a mother could love.

It’s no secret that BMW’s signature kidney grille has expanded in recent years, first touching in the middle before heading downward for extra acreage. It’s part of the automaker’s attempt at simple yet bold vehicle design, and it seems to be working. For better or worse, they’re getting noticed. And it will certainly be difficult not to notice this Bimmer’s snout when it rolls into a dealer or driveway near you. (Read More…)

By on October 23, 2019

Image: Mazda

Mazda put the future on display at the Tokyo Motor Show on Wednesday, unwrapping a battery-electric crossover that thankfully gives us something a little avant-garde to look at.

The brand’s compact EV makes things interesting not by offering a 130-mile range and relatively small battery pack (35.5 kWh), but by employing a team of designers to boost visual appeal in an otherwise bland segment. Kodo design language is front and center here, as is a cabin designed to instill a sense of openness. Materials that only Mazda could get excited about abound. Yet that’s not the MX-30’s most striking feature.

It’s about time another automaker returned to clamshell doors. (Read More…)

By on October 10, 2019

Despite Dyson’s promise of delivering multiple versions of an electric car that would surpass everything we’ve seen before and confirmation that it had functional prototypes already in testing, the company has axed its EV program entirely.

The firm announced its decision on Thursday, quoting founder James Dyson directly. “The Dyson Automotive team have developed a fantastic car; they have been ingenious in their approach while remaining faithful to our philosophies,” he explained. “However, though we have tried very hard throughout the development process, we simply cannot make it commercially viable.”

Dyson stated that the company was unable to find a buyer for the project, leading the board to suggest the £2.5 billion ($3.11 billion) automotive project be abandoned. While the corporation did not indicate how much of the capital was leftover, it said the funds would be used improve the Dyson Institute of Engineering and Technology or funneled into other tech programs. Any advancements stemming from its EV research will be utilized wherever possible — including commercial licensing agreements.   (Read More…)

By on September 25, 2019

Volvo, the brand TTAC commenters can’t get enough of (when they’re not talking Infiniti), will soon enter a fledgling segment no automaker seems capable of steering clear of: electric vehicles.

The new model, due for an October unveiling, won’t be an unfamiliar, futuristic blob that leaves viewers feeling cold and scared. Like many of its rivals, Volvo has opted to fully electrify an existing model. And what model has a longer-term viability than a compact crossover? (Read More…)

By on September 19, 2019

Amazon

Isn’t Rivian the popular thing these days? Courted by Amazon and Ford with investments of $700 million and $500 million, respectively, the Michigan-based EV startup recently gained a cash infusion from Cox Automotive.

Now, that very first investment is bearing fruit — 100,000 pieces of it, promised for a three-year delivery window. (Read More…)

By on September 13, 2019

Despite the amount of electric vehicle hype soaking today’s society, Ford’s upcoming electric F-150 pickup remains shrouded with mystery. What kind of power can customers expect? Range? Payload? Towing capacity? There’s few details of this looming creature, and even fewer details of General Motors’ EV pickup.

What’s left is enthusiasm from the Glass House and come-down-to-earth predictions from auto analysts. (Read More…)

By on August 22, 2019

Electric concept cars are often a snoozefest, nothing but vaporware bait aimed at the techie crowd, but a vehicle coming to Tokyo’s annual auto show in October will likely herald a production vehicle. Specifically, the Lexus brand’s first EV.

Both Toyota and its premium division plan to field a total of 10 electric models by the middle of next decade. If a report detailing the Lexus concept is anything to go on, the brand’s first electric offering might be boxy, modestly sized, and — if Lexus designers really do plan on emulating an older concept — possibly pretty ugly. (Read More…)

By on June 3, 2019

After claiming, via official channels, that its Nevada Gigafactory would likely become the site of Model Y production, Tesla seems to have changed its mind on where to build its upcoming crossover.

During a weekend podcast, Tesla CEO Elon Musk said production of the vehicle will likely take place where all other Teslas are built. It might not even require a tent. (Read More…)

By on May 29, 2019

gm

Hot on the heels of its Chinese-market debut in Shanghai last month, General Motors has foisted a reborn Trailblazer on North America. Take our word for it — GMT360 afficionado Chris Tonn couldn’t be happier.

The original TrailBlazer (note the uppercase “B”) bowed out of the American market after 2009, though a Holden-badged version built on the Chevy Colorado platform appeared overseas in 2012. The unrelated Chinese model is what you see here, riding atop a new architecture that underpins the Buick Encore GX you saw earlier today.

That’s right, the 2021 Trailblazer is a small crossover that slots between the subcompact Trax and compact Equinox. GM decided upsetting Blazer purists wasn’t enough. (Read More…)

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