Blog
Mercedes-Benz Recalls 841,000 Vehicles for Takata Airbags  Feb 10th, 2016 
Several Mercedes-Benz cars, SUVs, and vans have officially been recalled as part of the massive action concerning exploding, shrapnel-shooting Takata airbags. The company has just called back 705,000 passenger vehicles and another 136,000 Daimler-built vans in the U.S. Affected cars include the 2005–2014 C-class, E-class, GL-class, M-class, and SLK; the 2006–2012 R-class; and the 2011–2014 SLS AMG. The 2007–2014 Sprinter vans with Dodge, […] 
 
 
Sneak Peek: Honda Civic Hatchback  Feb 10th, 2016 
The U.S.-spec Honda Civic is adding a hatchback body style, and to get Civic fans pumped for its arrival, Honda has released a teaser sketch of its new baby’s back. Besides the model’s fast-sloping hatch, the sketch shows a rather racy center-exit dual exhaust. We’ll see more of the Civic hatch when it makes its debut […] 
 
 
Wise F&I Products Now Available Through Dealertrack Aftermarket Network  Feb 10th, 2016 
Through the Dealertrack Aftermarket Network, F&I sales and submission processes will now be handled online. The new integration supports multiple Wise F&I products, including the firm's GAP, appearance care, vehicle service contracts and theft-deterrent programs. 
 
 
Midnight Comes Again: Chevrolet Silverado and Colorado Gain More Midnight Editions  Feb 10th, 2016 
As seems to happen almost every 24 hours, midnight is coming ’round again, with Chevrolet announcing still more Midnight Edition vehicles. This time the recipients are Silverado and Colorado pickups. This familiar option package, which also darkens the Impala and the Trax, is much as you’d expect: black paint, black trim replacing most all of […] 
 
 
2017 Chevrolet Trax: Small Changes for Chevy’s Smallest CUV – Official Photos and Info  Feb 10th, 2016 
 
 
 
2017 Chevrolet Camaro 1LE V-6 and V-8 Prepare to Terrorize America’s Racetracks, Live in Your Driveway  Feb 10th, 2016 
Muscle- and pony-car fans will always opt for the V-8, no matter the other choices available to them. Internet commenters and hacks will scoff at the idea that a V-6—or, worse, a turbocharged four-cylinder—could even be considered fun. Whatever. We think that the more sporting, rear-drive coupes that exist in this world, the better, no […] 
 
 
2017 Chevrolet Trax: An Early Update  Feb 10th, 2016 
Chevy’s little Trax is one of the newer faces in the burgeoning subcompact-crossover cotillion. Judging by 2015, its first full year on sale—in which it rang up more than 400,000 purchases in 73 global markets, and placed second in the segment in the U.S., according to Chevrolet—it also is one of the more popular debutantes […] 
 
 
Crossover Tracks! Nissan Shows Off Tracked Winter Warrior CUVs [Video]  Feb 10th, 2016 
Everybody knows that crossovers are kinda wimpy compromises that offer a carlike ride and a trucklike ride height. Americans, however, don’t see themselves as wimpy people. We are, after all, a nation of rugged individualists, shopping at Target, eating at Applebee’s, and digging that subversive Macklemore cat. But sometimes, the trek to Bennigan’s gets a little more hairball […] 
 
 
Crossover Tracks! Nissan Shows Off Tracked Winter Warrior CUVs [Video]  Feb 10th, 2016 
 
 
 
Explore More: New Sport Appearance Package Unveiled for the Prolific Ford Explorer  Feb 10th, 2016 
The Ford Explorer is riding the current SUV boom, with sales approaching 250,000 in 2015, a 19-percent increase over the previous year. But Ford seemingly will not rest until there’s an Explorer in every driveway. For the revised 2016 model, Ford already added a new, top-tier Platinum trim level and gave it the muscular 365-hp EcoBoost […] 
 
 
Explore More: New Sport Appearance Package Unveiled for the Prolific Ford Explorer  Feb 10th, 2016 
 
 
 
2016 Scion iA Automatic Tested: Built By Mazda, Soon to Be a Toyota  Feb 10th, 2016 
At the time of this publishing, the Scion division is in the process of being dismantled and having the bulk of its lineup transferred under the Toyota banner. Although we can’t say we’re surprised at the announcement, the timing is unfortunate. For the first time in years, Scion has, in the recently minted iA subcompact, […] 
 
 
Midnight Comes Again: Chevrolet Silverado and Colorado Gain More Midnight Editions  Feb 10th, 2016 
 
 
 
2016 Scion iA Automatic – Instrumented Test  Feb 9th, 2016 
 
 
 
BMW M2 Becomes Smallest, Newest M-Badged MotoGP Safety Car  Feb 9th, 2016 
It feels as though BMW’s introduction of a new high-performance M model dressed up as a Safety Car for the MotoGP motorcycle racing series has become an event so predictable you could set your watch to it. The phenomenon has held true the past few years, and this year BMW is lobbing its new M2 […] 
 
 
BMW M2 Becomes Smallest, Newest M-Badged MotoGP Safety Car  Feb 9th, 2016 
 
 
 
No, the EPA Didn’t Just Outlaw Your Race Car  Feb 9th, 2016 
Today, the automotive-enthusiast press went into a collective tizzy over a press release sent out by the Specialty Equipment Manufacturer’s Association. In it, SEMA shed light on a previously unpublicized bit of wording buried within a giant, 629-page proposal drafted by the EPA in July of 2015. “EPA Seeks to Prohibit Conversion of Vehicles Into Racecars,” SEMA’s […] 
 
 
JM Family Enterprises Announces Four Senior-Level Promotions  Feb 9th, 2016 
Rajeev Ravindran was named CIO, while Hank Grooms was appointed vice president of marketing and field operations for Southeast Toyota Distributors. Additionally, Ed Brown will now serve as group vice president of operations, while Jonna Sherry was promoted to vice president of sales and marketing for World Omni. 
 
 
New EasyCare App Allows Dealers to ‘Own’ the ODBII Port  Feb 9th, 2016 
EasyCare is getting set to launch a new mobile app that will allow dealers to own the ODBII port in their customers’ vehicles. The connection will allow dealers to tailor service offers and alerts, as well as allow customers to perform a full health scan of their vehicle on their mobile device. 
 
 
VisionMenu Celebrates Econtracting Milestone  Feb 9th, 2016 
Econtracting through VisionMenu has grown from a few thousand contracts per month to more than 20,000 in January, and the company expects similar growth throughout the year. 
 
 
GWC Warranty Releases New Website Design  Feb 9th, 2016 
GWC Warranty's newly redesigned website is now live. It features simple-to-navigate content designed for dealers and customers alike. It also provides owners of GWC products with a dealer locator, and allows them to easily look up coverage, among other features. 
 
 
Becoming an F&I Manager  Feb 9th, 2016 
F&I isn't for the faint of heart. His Madness delves into the compliance side of the F&I manager's role in Part One of his two-part series on becoming an F&I manager. 
 
 
Ally Financial Increasing Carvana's Floorplan Credit Line  Feb 9th, 2016 
Ally Financial said this week it is increasing the online vehicle retailer's floorplan credit line from $60 million to $125 million. This will allow Carvana to finance approximately 7,100 vehicles, up from 3,400. 
 
 
Simply Red: The Subaru XV Crosstrek Special Edition  Feb 9th, 2016 
Subaru’s XV Crosstrek, a slightly lifted and otherwise not-that-different variant of the Impreza hatchback, has been a surprise hit for the brand. Perhaps because the affordably priced neo-crossover has been so popular, Subaru doesn’t feel it has to try terribly hard with the new XV Crosstrek Special Edition. Besides some additional equipment, mostly what’s different […] 
 
 
Grass Roots Program Makes St. Thomas Best in Show at Provincial Marketing Awards  Feb 9th, 2016 
#stthomasproud wins again - this time at the Provincial level. Born out of negativity following the global economic downturn and fueled by a resilient positivity, #stthomasproud has become commonplace on social media and other marketing channels. 
 
 
2017 Ferrari GTC4Lusso Revealed! – Official Photos and Info  Feb 8th, 2016 
 
 
 
Car and Driver Tested: The Quickest Cars from the 1950s to Today  Feb 8th, 2016 
 
 
 
Is It in ‘Park’? NHTSA Investigating Confusing Gearshift in Chryslers, Dodges, Jeeps  Feb 8th, 2016 
This past summer, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration opened a preliminary investigation into just over 400,000 Jeep Grand Cherokees, after some owners alleged their vehicles would roll away after being shifted into Park. NHTSA has since more than doubled the number of Jeep, Dodge, and Chrysler vehicles being investigated. And the agency now blames the […] 
 
 
2017 BMW Alpina B7: Still the M7 BMW Won’t Build – Official Photos and Info  Feb 8th, 2016 
 
 
 
2017 BMW Alpina B7: The 600-hp 7-series that Still Isn’t Called an M7  Feb 8th, 2016 
Similar to this year’s field of presidential candidates, the upper echelon of luxury sedans offers a plethora of establishment choices seasoned by a few outsiders. Against veritable four-door stalwarts such as the Mercedes-Benz S-class, Jaguar XJ, Audi A8, and BMW 7-series, stand fringe offerings—Porsche’s Panamera, Maserati’s Quattroporte—and special variants of more mainstream models, your AMG […] 
 
 
The General’s Motorsports Skunkworks: Inside the GM Performance Racing Center  Feb 8th, 2016 
Basking in the warm glow of its remarkable success at the recent Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona endurance race (see the bottom of this post), GM flung open the doors of its new Performance Racing Center in Pontiac, Michigan, to provide a look at how the pros prepare for road-, drag-, oval-, and Indy-car racing. […] 
 
 
2017 Ferrari GTC4Lusso: The Four-Place Ferrari  Feb 8th, 2016 
When Ferrari’s FF made its debut for 2012, the model broke new ground by being the first Ferrari with four-wheel drive. (The four-wheel-drive system and the car’s four-place layout led to the “FF” designation.) The newly unveiled follow-up version adds four-wheel steering to the mix, but rather than adding a third “F” to the model […] 
 
 
The 7 New Rules of Car Buying: How to Shop in Today’s World  Feb 8th, 2016 
There are few truly bad vehicles for sale today, but, when there are more models boasting more whistles and bells than ever before, that doesn’t make car shopping easy. Even if you’re car savvy, you can still make an uninformed choice or get a bad deal. And the wealth of resources for information can obscure […] 
 
 
The CFPB's Misguided Crusade  Feb 8th, 2016 
AFIP's executive director has some choice words for President Obama, Sen. Warren and the 'smartest guys in the room.' 
 
 
Perfecting the F&I Turnover  Feb 8th, 2016 
Expert says salespeople play a critical role in what happens in the F&I office. She lists four ways they can successfully pave the road to back-end sales. 
 
 
Want vs. Need: A Lesson in Salesmanship  Feb 8th, 2016 
Industry veteran tells an entertaining tale of a conquest sale from 40 years ago to relay three key lessons about salesmanship and the art of listening. 
 
 
Measuring Up  Feb 8th, 2016 
AutoNation's $1,500 per-copy claim was a great achievement, but one industry vet warns F&I pros against using it as a benchmark for F&I success. 
 
 
Fighter Pilot Bruce Bright to Keynote Dealer Summit  Feb 8th, 2016 
Organizers of Dealer Summit have announced that Lt. Col. Bruce Bright, USMC (Ret.) will deliver a motivational keynote address at the event, which will be held May 3–5, 2016, at the Sheraton Tampa Riverwalk Hotel. 
 
 
24 Things You Didn’t Expect Were Made By Car Companies  Feb 8th, 2016 
We call them automakers, but over the years car companies have made a lot of interesting things that weren't cars at all.  
 
 
Ex–Stirling Moss Ferrari Is the Second-Most-Expensive Car Ever to Sell at Auction  Feb 8th, 2016 
A 1957 Ferrari 335S Spider once raced by Sir Stirling Moss brought $35.8 million at the Artcurial auction at the Retromobile event in France, making it the second-most-expensive car ever to sell at auction. That is, if you’re measuring in dollars. The Retromobile car sold for 32.075 million euros, which translates to $35.8 million. The […] 
 
 
They’re Real, and They’re Spectacular: See All 18 Seinfeld Porsches, VWs Heading to Auction  Feb 5th, 2016 
At first there were three, now there are 18—that’s the total number of Porsches (and Volkswagens) Jerry Seinfeld has consigned to the Gooding & Company auction at Amelia Island next month. Besides releasing the full list of cars the actor, comedian, and noted Porsche-head plans to part with, Gooding & Co. also shared photos of the cars. […] 
 
 
They’re Real, and They’re Spectacular: All 18 Seinfeld Porsches, VWs Heading to Auction  Feb 5th, 2016 
 
 
 
2016 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Z51 vs. 2016 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 – Comparison Tests  Feb 5th, 2016 
 
 
 
Super Bowl 50: Watch Every Car Ad from the Big Game!  Feb 5th, 2016 
Last year’s Super Bowl saw a decline in automotive advertising, with only nine scheduled for the Big Game. In hindsight, that doesn’t seem like a misstep, given how 2015 shattered car-sales records, the automakers made out okay avoiding big-budget ads and expensive airtime. Of course, we car fans missed the extra dash of automotive goodness during the Super Bowl, […] 
 
 
ACO Accepts Four (Ideally, Fully Functioning) Ford GTs to 2016 Le Mans Race  Feb 5th, 2016 
After a disastrous debut at last weekend’s Rolex 24 endurance race at Daytona, all four of Chip Ganassi’s Ford GT racers have been accepted to compete in the 2016 running of Le Mans. Despite Ford having already declared its intent to go racing at Le Mans, today it became official. The announcement should be a […] 
 
 
Red, Fight, and Blue: Corvette Stingray Z51 vs. Mustang Shelby GT350!  Feb 5th, 2016 
Chairman Mao Zedong, a fan of the red but not so much of the white or the blue, once said, “I got more hoes than the ozone.” Oh wait, it might have been Abraham Lincoln who said that. The quote we were Google-searching for from Chairman Mao was something about asymmetric warfare, about how a […] 
 
 
BMW M Looking at Possible Electrification, Hybrids  Feb 5th, 2016 
In a report from AutoExpress that, once read, seems patently obvious on the surface, a BMW executive is quoted describing how the company’s high-performance M division is looking at hybrids and electrified vehicles down the road. (BMW itself has already dived headfirst into electrics and hybrids with the i division and plug-in-hybrid variants of every model […] 
 
 
Opel Mokka X Previews Updated Buick Encore  Feb 5th, 2016 
The Buick Encore is the brand’s first subcompact crossover, and it has done well in the market. The Encore has a cousin in Germany, the Opel Mokka, and that model has just received its first update along with a new suffix—it’s now called the Mokka X. The revisions provide an early indication of what we […] 
 
 
ACO Accepts Four (Ideally, Fully Functioning) Ford GTs to 2016 Le Mans Race  Feb 5th, 2016 
 
 
 
Report Claims Crash Test Troubles Behind Alfa Romeo Giulia Delay  Feb 5th, 2016 
Although the 4C sports car marked Alfa Romeo’s return to North America (notwithstanding the ultra-limited-production 8C Competizione coupe and 8C Spider of a few years earlier), it is the Giulia sedan that really is tasked with reestablishing the brand’s presence here. Alfa has been somewhat vague in discussing timing for the all-new model, but at […] 
 
 
Gurney in 2016! Racing Great Developing Counter-Rotating, Twin-Crank Two-Cylinder Engine  Feb 5th, 2016 
From the February 2016 issue While poltroons, charlatans, earnest amateurs, and fuzzy idealists vie for the presidency, in Southern Cali­fornia, Dan Gurney drafts proposals for a ­better internal-combustion engine. No, it’s not 1964, and we’re no longer stumping to send Mr. ­Gurney to Washington. But the 84-year-old non­pareil racer-cum-inventor refuses to retire. His latest work […] 
 
 
2016 Nissan Sentra – First Drive Review  Feb 5th, 2016 
 
 
 
2016 Nissan Sentra First Drive: Off the Beater Path  Feb 5th, 2016 
With some 4 million sold in the U.S. alone, the Nissan Sentra is the definition of ubiquitous, and for most of its history, it was a simple and indestructible beater—with a huge 93 percent of post-2005 U.S. models still on the road today, according to Nissan. But my how it’s grown, as have its primary […] 
 
 
Audi RS Q3 Performance: Audi’s Alphabet Soup Creates a 367-hp Mini-Monster  Feb 4th, 2016 
The compact-crossover segment is growing wildly. Models like the Audi Q3, the BMW X1 and the Mercedes-Benz GLA are the hottest commodities in Europe and China right now—and the segment is growing in the U.S. as well. But we still have some catching up to do, and that’s why we don’t get the latest addition […] 
 
 
Audi RS Q3 Performance: Audi’s Alphabet Soup Creates a 367-hp Mini-Monster  Feb 4th, 2016 
 
 
 
Honda Adds 2.23 Million Cars to Takata Airbag Recalls  Feb 4th, 2016 
  Honda is recalling 2.23 million more cars in the U.S. for defective Takata airbag inflators, which now affect nearly every car in the company’s lineup. The new Honda models include the 2007–2011 CR-V, 2007–2014 Ridgeline, 2009–2014 Fit, 2010–2014 FCX Clarity, 2010–2014 Insight, and 2011–2015 CR-Z. Acura vehicles affected by this new recall are the 2005–2012 RL, 2007–2016 RDX, 2009–2014 TL, 2010–2013 […] 
 
 
2016 Aston Martin Lagonda Taraf – First Drive Review  Feb 4th, 2016 
 
 
 
Semi-Autonomous Cars Compared! Tesla Model S vs. BMW 750i, Infiniti Q50S, and Mercedes-Benz S65 AMG – Feature  Feb 4th, 2016 
 
 
 
How We’d Spec It: A 2017 Porsche 718 Boxster S With $25K in Options  Feb 4th, 2016 
 
 
 
“Heck on Wheels!” Toyota Prius Super Bowl Ad Celebrates Blandness with Weirdness  Feb 4th, 2016 
Toyota’s Prius has never been particularly exciting, but the car has been given an injection of chutzpah in its latest generation in the form of bolder—and questionable—styling. Odd looks aside, the Prius’s game hasn’t changed much, it still being the go-to for those who still care about high fuel economy in a gas-powered vehicle and, […] 
 
 
Cool It Now: Chrysler 300S and 200S Alloy Editions Are New Additions  Feb 4th, 2016 
The 200 may be going the way of the dodo, but that doesn’t mean Chrysler’s not going to squeeze some more life out of its mid-size backmarker. Along with the beefcake 300, the 200 is getting the appearance-package treatment. This one’s called Alloy. As one might expect, it’s metallic in nature. On the 200S, going alloy […] 
 
 
Cool It Now: Chrysler 300S and 200S Alloy Editions Are New Additions  Feb 4th, 2016 
 
 
 
How We’d Spec It: A 2017 Porsche 718 Boxster S With $25K in Options  Feb 4th, 2016 
Given that Porsche’s online configurator offers countless options, it’s easy to lose oneself in Porsche’s multitude of personalization options, from colored seat belts to leather-wrapped steering columns, and end up with a five figures’ worth of extras. We did just that when building out a new 2017 718 Boxster S, which despite dropping its classic […] 
 
 
Citroen SpaceTourer Hyphen: Way Cooler than a SpaceTourer Semicolon  Feb 4th, 2016 
The name for Citroën’s SpaceTourer Concept Hyphen, a funkified version of its new SpaceTourer van, did not come via a collaboration with an organization of grammar teachers or copy editors; instead, Citroën teamed up with one the most prolific electronic rock bands in France. The SpaceTourer Concept Hyphen was built with input from Hyphen Hyphen, and the […] 
 
 
Semi-Autonomous Cars Compared! Tesla vs. BMW, Mercedes, and Infiniti  Feb 4th, 2016 
Autonomous driving—what the high-minded call artificial intelligence and what we call real brainlessness—may not be as vile as we originally feared. One DeLorean DMC-12 directed by a Stanford University engineering crew can perform perfect opposite-lock, tire-cooking, hands-off donuts at will for as long as the rubber lasts. Lead professor Chris Gerdes explained the rationale underlying […] 
 
 
2016 Aston Martin Lagonda Taraf Driven: Sampling the $1-Million Supersedan  Feb 4th, 2016 
Statistically speaking, this is unlikely to be the car for you. Aston Martin admits it’s entirely possible the company won’t sell a single example of the Lagonda Taraf in the U.S., despite now officially offering it here after initially restricting sales to the Middle East and then widening availability a bit early last year. Indeed, […] 
 
 
Kevin Hart Uses Hyundai Genesis to Stalk Daughter’s Date in Funny Super Bowl Ad  Feb 4th, 2016 
As we all continue to wrangle with the usefulness of wearables like Apple’s Watch and their place in the car, Hyundai has crafted perhaps the best example yet of the tech’s potential with its latest Super Bowl 50 ad. Hyundai is among a few automakers that have integrated wearables with its in-car infotainment and telematics suite, […] 
 
 
AutoNation’s F&I Operations Posts $1,538 Per-Copy Average for 2015  Feb 4th, 2016 
AutoNation’s F&I operations, or what the group refers to as Customer Financial Services, lived above $1,500 in F&I gross profit per vehicle retailed (PVR) in 2015, with the business unit’s full-year revenues rising by $100.5 million from 2014. 
 
 
Protecting the Finish  Feb 4th, 2016 
Three F&I pros reveal the props they use to demonstrate the value of paintless dent removal and paint-and-fabric protection. 
 
 
AFIP Online Training Now on LightSpeed  Feb 4th, 2016 
The Association of Finance & Insurance Professionals has partnered with LightSpeed, an interactive virtual training system provider, to host its online certification program 
 
 
Ally's 2015 Originations Surpass Target Despite Loss of GM  Feb 4th, 2016 
The former captive originated $41 billion in auto loans in 2015, surpassing the high $30 billion range it projected at the beginning of the year. Much of that was due to the 53% increase in non-GM/Chrysler originations. 
 
 
Swimming in the Deep End  Feb 4th, 2016 
The editor is excited about Dealer Summit, Compliance Summit and diving into the first-ever F&I Think Tank. He explains why you should be, too. 
 
 
Nothing but the Truth  Feb 4th, 2016 
F&I trainer says car buyers will only truly reveal their needs in an environment that rewards honesty. He offers a few trust-building tips designed to get customers to open up. 
 
 
KBB Releases List of Best Family Cars of 2016  Feb 4th, 2016 
Honda led the pack with five models making the list, while Chevrolet had three. 
 
 
Non-Takata Airbag Defect Snags Up To 5 Million Cars, Recalls Pending  Feb 4th, 2016 
Certain airbags manufactured by Continental can fail in as many as five million cars from at least four manufacturers, according to filings from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Power-supply circuit boards within the airbag control module can corrode over time, breaking electrical connections and causing airbags to either not deploy when they should or […] 
 
 
Former “Friends” Star Matt LeBlanc to Co-Host BBC “Top Gear”  Feb 4th, 2016 
With the news that Sabine Schmitz may not actually be co-hosting the upcoming relaunch of the BBC’s Top Gear, we were starting to wonder who would actually be joining Chris Evans on the show. Turns out, it’s someone who isn’t even British—it’s former Friends star Matt LeBlanc. The BBC announced today that LeBlanc will join production immediately, with other cast members […] 
 
 
Mazda Engineer: Turbocharging a New Rotary Engine “Would Be Good”  Feb 4th, 2016 
The rotary engine clearly is a cornerstone of Mazda’s identity, despite the automaker not offering one in a production car since the RX-8 shuffled off this mortal rotor. But the stunning RX-Vision concept packed a Wankel rotary, and hopeful chatter from executives in the wake of that car’s debut gave the impression that the company was working hard to bring […] 
 
 
Toyota Ends Scion Experiment  Feb 4th, 2016 
The automaker announced on Wednesday it plans to transition the youth-geared brand back into the Toyota brand, with several model-year 2017 vehicles expected to be rebadged as Toyota beginning in August. 
 
 
Fiat-Chrysler Recalls Dodge Charger for Jack Failures  Feb 3rd, 2016 
Fiat-Chrysler is handing out 441,578 sets of wheel chocks for Dodge Charger owners to prevent their cars from coming off jacks, the company said Wednesday. When propping a 2011–2016 Charger on the supplied jack, the vehicle’s body may flex enough so that the jack can slip off the mounts when tire chocks aren’t used. The […] 
 
 
2017 Hyundai Elantra – First Drive Review  Feb 3rd, 2016 
 
 
 
Get a Roundel in a Kia? Korean Automaker to Take on BMW 3-series  Feb 3rd, 2016 
We noted last year that Kia’s Novo concept (pictured above) could presage the brand’s entry into the four-door-coupe segment. At the time, we suggested that the car “could give the Mazda 3 and the Volkswagen Golf a real run for their money among style-minded customers.” But it looks as though Kia’s aiming beyond the Mazda […] 
 
 
Raptor, Racer: Ford to Race F-150 Raptor in Factory Stock Off-Road Class  Feb 3rd, 2016 
Ford has touted its F-150 Raptor as the factory-built off-road rig to beat right from the start, and the bravado hasn’t let up with the introduction of the 2017 model. Confident its truck’s four-wheeling skills are no cheap trick, the automaker is entering the new F-150 Raptor in the 2016 Best in the Desert off-road […] 
 
 
2017 Hyundai Elantra First Drive: More Like This One, Please  Feb 3rd, 2016 
Hyundai has a fresh product line, growing sales, and a vastly improved quality reputation. But it also has a major problem: It’s a car company in an increasingly truck-focused world. The brand’s sales mix is 76 percent cars in a market that is running at 57 percent trucks, including ever-more-popular crossovers. “We need more trucks,” […] 
 
 
Raptor, Racer: Ford to Race F-150 Raptor in Factory Stock Off-Road Class  Feb 3rd, 2016 
 
 
 
Senators Call On Obama to Recall All Takata Airbags with Ammonium Nitrate  Feb 3rd, 2016 
President Obama isn’t the Recaller-in-Chief, but that’s not stopping two senators from calling on him to expand the Takata airbag recalls into maximum overdrive. Sensators Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn., above at right) and Edward Markey (D-Mass.), in a letter dated Tuesday to the White House, want Takata to recall every airbag inflator in the U.S. that […] 
 
 
Toyota Motor Credit Agrees to Lower Markup Caps to Settle CFPB Allegations  Feb 3rd, 2016 
The three-year standoff between Toyota Motor Credit, the Justice Department and the CFPB is over, with the captive agreeing to pay up to $21.9 million in restitution to minority borrowers the regulators allege were overcharged on their auto loans. The captive also agreed to lower its dealer markup caps. 
 
 
Toyota Recalls 320,000 Trucks and SUVs for Accidental Airbag Deployment  Feb 3rd, 2016 
Toyota is recalling 320,000 trucks and SUVs in the U.S. for airbags that can accidentally deploy, the company said Wednesday. Side curtain airbags on older Toyota and Lexus models—all of them the burly, body-on-frame trucks—may deploy “shortly after startup” and without warning. The seat belt pre-tensioners may also activate by accident, without an actual accident. […] 
 
 
2017 Volkswagen Tiguan AWD – Prototype Drive  Feb 3rd, 2016 
 
 
 
Fleeting Youth: Toyota Is Shuttering Its Scion Division  Feb 3rd, 2016 
The sun is setting on Scion, Toyota’s youth-oriented division, at the ripe age of 13. Toyota has announced that, starting in August, the iA, iM, FR-S, and the upcoming C-HR crossover will all be sold as Toyotas instead. The tC will be discontinued. Launched with much fanfare in 2003, Scion was at once a bold […] 
 
 
2017 Volkswagen Tiguan First Drive: Sampling a Euro-Spec Tiguan to Unlock the Secrets of Our Version  Feb 3rd, 2016 
Driving new vehicles before they officially go on sale often requires asterisks. Option packages and pricing typically aren’t finalized, EPA fuel-economy numbers may not have been released. The disclaimers for our first experience with the 2017 Volkswagen Tiguan, on the other hand, read like those for reality court TV, where everything’s true, except the names, […] 
 
 
To the Moon, Audi! Audi Shoots for the Stars with Super Bowl Commercial [Video]  Feb 3rd, 2016 
What’s the cure for depression in old people? A shiny new Audi R8, that’s what! That’s the message in Audi’s Super Bowl commercial this year, which is entitled “Commander.” The 60-second spot plays up the redemptive power of Audi, much like 2013’s “Prom,” but this treatment is even more straightforward here. An aging astronaut sits […] 
 
 
Fleeting Youth: Toyota Is Shuttering Its Scion Division  Feb 3rd, 2016 
 
 
 
Sub-Optimal Walken Experience: Kia’s Super Bowl Ad Blows a Great Bad Pun  Feb 2nd, 2016 
We love a good pun. Or a bad pun. Or any pun at all, really. To wit, there may have been an instant messenger conversation the other day where we labored to fit the names of hardcore musicians and bands into those of motorcycles, resulting in such semi-amusing groaners as the Ducati Multistradag Nasty, the […] 
 
 
Honda Orders Stop-Sale on 2016 Civic, Official Recall Pending  Feb 2nd, 2016 
Honda has issued a stop sale and safety recall notice for 2016 Civics equipped with the 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine due to a manufacturing inconsistency that could cause engine damage or failure. Although an official campaign number has not yet issued by the NHTSA, what appears to be official Honda dealership correspondence detailing the action was […] 
 
 
Tesla Now Says It’s Not Looking to Sell Via Franchise Dealers in Michigan  Feb 2nd, 2016 
Earlier, we reported that Tesla had applied for a dealership license in the state of Michigan. At the time, we assumed Tesla was doing so because it had finally given up fighting anti-competitive legislators and the state’s dealership cartels, and decided to play by the rules with an independent dealership not owned by the automaker. According […] 
 
 
Every Mazda CX-5 Crossover Recalled for Potential Fuel Leaks  Feb 2nd, 2016 
Mazda is recalling 264,463 CX-5 crossovers in the U.S. for fuel leaks, the company said in a statement. The 2014–2016 CX-5 has a fuel-filler pipe that can crack during rear-end crashes, and because no one likes spilled gasoline, Mazda is going to repair all of them. It didn’t specify an exact repair and filings were not […] 
 
 
The Chairman Kaiser! It’ll Surprise Yer! SsangYong Gets Dubious with Names  Feb 2nd, 2016 
While Volkswagen has done an admirable job of keeping W.O. Bentley’s name at the forefront of the ultra-luxe brand he founded, and the Charles Rolls/Henry Royce duo looms large in the minds of gearheads with sybaritic tendencies, your average layman gives not two whits about the men behind the names; the brand is all. So […] 
 
 
We Get Behind the Wheel of a Surplus Humvee, No Enlistment Required! – Feature  Feb 2nd, 2016 
 
 
 
So Much Money: Top 25 Sales of the Arizona Auctions  Feb 2nd, 2016 
 
 
 
A Ferrari SUV? “You Have to Shoot Me First,” Says Sergio  Feb 2nd, 2016 
Now that Ferrari is a publicly traded enterprise (NYSE: RACE), the question for fans of the marque is whether—or, more accurately, to what degree—the attendant financial pressures will affect the cars that it builds. Already, we’ve had chairman Sergio Marchionne talking about raising production from the longtime ceiling of 7000 cars to more than 9000. […] 
 
 
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