Sales of new cars have been moving along at record levels for the first part of 2012. But all of this hard fought progress is in danger of coming to a sudden and abrupt stop thanks to a supplier issue that threatens to disrupt and potentially cripple all global vehicle production.
My wife drives into stuff. Specifically, she (apparently) enjoys running into the frame of our garage door while pulling into her space. To keep my marriage happy, I have stopped getting upset about these things. I try to keep my cars scratch free and I test products on her scratches and dents. As you can see in the lead picture for this article she really got the garage this time. This is the second time that this has happened to her Chrysler Town & Country, a van with less than 2,500 miles. Since I have already buffed out the first scuff I figured that this one was there for good. I was wrong.
In the race to bring the best-of-the-best to discerning buyers, Mercedes-Benz has taken a new approach to bring audiophile quality sound to an open top roadster. In the upcoming SL series, M-B has incorporated footwell mounted woofers directly in the frame of the car. The ~8.5″ woofers are mounted into the front bulkhead and then hidden from view with the normal carpet that you would expect to find under your feet. Why would they go to such trouble? Read on to find out.
Of all the cars to have recently attracted the scorn of the motoring press, the hapless Chevy Aveo was right up there with the Pontiac Aztek, if not quite in the same stratosphere of opprobrium as the peerless Yugo. I rented an Aveo once, and have completely forgotten what the driving experience was like, although I believe it extended over several days and across three or four Midwestern states, sufficient indication in itself of automotive insignificance. Well, the Aveo is history, unless you’re desperate for some really cheap wheels fresh off the used-rental lot, which is where you’re likely to find your average pre-owned model. But I’d skip it, because there’s good news in the affordable-car realm, and its name is Chevrolet Sonic.
On the window sticker of the 2012 Mazda 3 SkyActiv automatic sedan it states that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates this car at 40 MPG on the highway. Right now, 40 is the number that matters. According to the maturation of Jay-Z, 30 is the new 20, but when it comes to cars, 40 is the new 30. The ability to rate a normal gasoline powered car at 40 MPG highway is one of those figures that manufacturers are happy to tout.
In order to hit this magic number Mazda combined several technologies and called them SkyActiv. The question that remained for me was if Mazda left the rest of its compelling formula behind on the path to a 40 MPG number.
An area that is going to evolve faster than any other part of the car in the next five years are in-dash electronics. In-car navigation, entertainment, and connectivity are going to explode in availability across all of the manufacturers product lines. As we have talked about in the past, (here, here, and here) this space is going to get more and more competitive and require very quick development-to-market cycles. As a result, we are planning a multi-part series specifically about in-car infotainment. Our goal is to line up all of the systems that are new to the market or are becoming available at new product levels (trickle-down technology). Read on for some more information, and to view a few early stage previews of some of the interesting systems from the 2012 New York Auto Show.
Perhaps since my last article you’ve read a few magazines about your favorite marque and now you’ve got your mind set on one….or maybe you are wavering between a couple marques and/or types of classic cars.
The bad news is you are hooked! And you know you are ready to take the leap; you want to jump in with both feet and join the rest of the poor souls who have been bitten by the classic sports car bug. Congratulations!
Now, the obstacles to purchasing a classic sports car begin to materialize; how to figure out what to buy, maybe you know what you want but are not sure of the best path to acquiring it. Perhaps you feel eBay is the best way to buy, or Hemmings, or you know of one behind a barn in your hometown. How do you avoid buying a true nightmare of a car, how do you know the right things to look for and what to avoid, who can you trust, how do you avoid paying too much?
By Carl Malek
In a statement released to reporters at the New York Auto Show, Hyundai Motor America CEO John Krafcik revealed that the 2013 Santa Fe will formally replace the Hyundai Veracruz when the latter ceases production “around November.” Hyundai formally revealed the all-new 2013 Santa Fe last Wednesday, showcasing the new model in both five- and seven-passenger variants for the assembled media.