Honda Recalling 1.1M Vehicles to Replace Airbags

Automaker just the latest to make big push to complete repairs.

by on Mar.12, 2019

American Honda is recalling 1.1 million vehicles due to faulty Takata airbags.

American Honda’s Takata nightmare continues with a voluntarily recall of about 1.1 million Acura and Honda vehicles in the United States to replace, for free, Takata desiccated replacement driver front airbag inflators that may rupture if an airbag deploys in a crash.

Takata’s faulty airbags triggered the largest automotive recall in history. The airbags deployed with such force that pieces of plastic and metal were propelled into the vehicle cabin killing nearly two dozen and injuring more than 125 people.

News Now!

Honda was one of Takata’s biggest customers. The vehicles involved in this recall were previously repaired using specific Takata desiccated replacement inflators (PSDI-5D) or entire replacement airbag modules containing these inflators, neither subject to recall at that time. Those replacement inflators are now deemed defective as well. Read the rest of this entry »

VW Expects to Sell 22 Million EVs Over Next Decade

CEO’s new target marks a 50% jump.

by on Mar.12, 2019

VW CEO Herbert Diess is shown here with the I.D. Crozz and Buzz concept vehicles.

Germany’s Volkswagen AG expects to sell 22 million battery-electric vehicles over the next decade, CEO Herbert Diess said during the company’s annual meeting on Tuesday.

The carmaker has been on an aggressive push into electrification and has outlined projects expected to cost it close to $100 billion by 2025 alone. But, until today, Diess had set a target of selling just 15 million battery-cars. Either figure would mark a massive increase considering VW sold just 50,000 all-electric vehicles last year.

Electrification News!

“The supertanker is picking up speed,” Diess said Tuesday in a speech to shareholders gathered in Frankfurt. “We are aligning Volkswagen with e-mobility like no other company in our industry.”

Read the rest of this entry »

Trump Moves to Kill EV Tax Credits

Support strong in Congress.

by on Mar.11, 2019

President Donald Trump announced plans to end electric vehicle tax credits.

President Donald Trump has proposed eliminating the tax credits that have helped promote the emergence of the battery-car market, though that proposal could hit a snag when Congress begins to consider the new White House budget proposal.

If anything, some lawmakers – backed by the auto industry – are pressing to extend the credits, which run up to as much as $7,500 for qualifying battery-cars.

News Now!

Two manufacturers, Tesla and General Motors, have already crossed sales thresholds at which they will begin seeing the credits begin to phase out. As of January 1, Tesla buyers qualify for half the original number, of $3,750. The credits for the California-based automaker will expire entirely at the end of thise year. Read the rest of this entry »

UAW Raising Strike Pay Ahead of Big Three Negotiations

Workers get $250 a week now, up $50 a week.

by on Mar.11, 2019

UAW President Gary Jones said striking workers will get $50 more in their check effective immediately.

In a warning that it was preparing for a fight during contract talks with Detroit’s automakers this coming summer, the United Auto Workers raised the amount it will pay workers, who walk off the job from $767-million strike fund.

UAW President Gary Jones told opening day attendees of the union’s Special Convention on Collective Bargaining said the union’s executive board approved raising the weekly strike pay, effectively immediately to $250 per week from the current level of $200 per week.

Union News!

The strike pay will be raised to $275 per week effective Jan. 1, 2020, said Jones, adding the union’s strike benefits also include health insurance for union members and their families during the duration of any contract dispute that leads to a strike. Read the rest of this entry »

Topping 1,000: An Ultra-Exclusive Club Continues to Expand

This year’s Geneva Motor Show brought an array of new entries.

by on Mar.11, 2019

The Pininfarina is one of an assortment of 1,000+ hp models that debuted in Geneva.

This month’s Geneva Motor Show brought the debut of dozens of new models, from little city cars all the way up to mega-million dollar exotics. It also brought several new entries into one of the automotive industry’s most exotic clubs: vehicles topping 1,000 horsepower.

It’s been 14 years since the original Bugatti Veyron 16.4 captured a spot in the Guinness World Records by becoming the first model to deliver four-figure power. With the debut of models like the Aston Martin AM-RB 003, Hispano Suiza Carmen, Koenigsegg Jesko and Pinfarina Battista in Geneva last week the number of models topping the 1,000 hp mark is now over a dozen, with several other models reportedly in the works.

Performance News!

As you’d expect, the price tag for these products is equally astronomical. A special one-off version of the Bugatti Chiron last week was announced at $19 million. But, if you have the cash and access to a long stretch of pavement, here’s what you might want to check out:

Read the rest of this entry »

Tesla Backtracks on Store Closures; Raises Prices 3% Instead

$35K Model 3 exempt from price increase.

by on Mar.11, 2019

Tesla announced it will only close half of its stores and offset that by raising prices 3%.

Tesla buyers looking to walk into a store to buy a new vehicle were disappointed recently when Chief Elon Musk said the company would close the stores to cut costs — now they can rejoice.

In a blog post, the company announced it would only close about half of the stores across the country, after a spate of negative back about the move initially.

News Now!

“Over the past two weeks we have been closely evaluating every single Tesla retail location, and we have decided to keep significantly more stores open than previously announced,” the electric carmaker said.  Read the rest of this entry »

February Auto Sales in China Drop 13.8%

New energy vehicles, i.e. EVs, rose 53.6% last month.

by on Mar.11, 2019

New vehicle sales in China, like the Mazda CX-4, fell during the month of February 13.8%.

Automakers hoping that China might bail them out of sluggish sales in the U.S. are going to be disappointed as sales in the world’s largest market fell 13.8% in February.

The drop is eight consecutive month that China, only just two years ago posting double-digit increases, has seen buyers keep their money in their wallets. Sales fell 16% in January and 13% in December. Overall, 1.48 million new vehicles were sold in China last month, according to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers.

Business News!

“The trend experienced last year has continued into this year, and the economic situation has also been weak. This has dragged down consumption,” CAAM’s Deputy Secretary General Shi Jianhua told reporters at a news briefing in Beijing. Read the rest of this entry »

UAW Leaders Meet as Prelude to Bargaining With Automakers

Expect tough talks with auto companies.

by on Mar.11, 2019

UAW President Gary Jones will be looking to get back from union locals across the country.

The United Auto Workers heads into its bargaining convention this week against tumultuous backdrop that includes suddent plant closing, a grinding federal investigation of the union’s handling of training funds and grumbling among union members, who have made it plain this winter the expect some gains  when the UAW goes to the bargaining table this summer with Detroit’s three automakers.

The resolutions adpted during the meeting will be broad so as not to encumber union bargainers in future negotiations but specific enough to shape the tenor of upcoming  talks not only in the auto industry but also other sectors where the union has members.

News You Can Trust!

“It is an ideal way to get members from a variety of workplaces and backgrounds together and discuss what is important to their fellow workers, their families and their communities,” UAW President Gary Joines said in a new issue of Solidarity, the union’s magazine. Read the rest of this entry »

BMW: The Leading US Exporter of New Vehicles

Automaker's SUVs extreme popularity give it the title.

by on Mar.08, 2019

BMW shipped more than 234,000 SUVs and coupes from the U.S.

Once again, BMW is the top exporter of vehicles from the United States. For the fifth year in a row, the German automaker’s X series sport activity vehicles took it to the top of the heap.

The company said it exported 234,689 units of its sport-utilities and coupes from its Spartanburg, South Carolina, plant during 2018, totaling more than $8.4 billion in 2018.

The Last Word!

“Despite…the ongoing uncertainty regarding trade and tariffs, plant Spartanburg is still positively contributing to the U.S. balance of trade,” said Knudt Flor, president and CEO of BMW Manufacturing Co LLC. Read the rest of this entry »

Trump Administration Takes Credit for Fuel Economy, Emissions Improvements

Average fuel economy improved year-over-year, emissions dropped.

by on Mar.08, 2019

EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler argues that the CAFE changes are getting cleaner, safer cars onto the road faster than under the Obama rules.

The Trump administration is arguing that its deregulation polices are helping reduce the amount of heat-trapping carbon dioxide emitted by automobiles.

In a report issued this week, Trump’s EPA said auto manufacturers continue increasing fuel economy and reducing pollution through innovation.

News You Can Trust!

Andrew Wheeler, the new head of the EPA, said the latest edition of U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s annual Automotive Trends Report underscores the administration’s contention. Read the rest of this entry »

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