Russian Automaker GAZ Pushes for U.S. to Lift Sanctions

Treasury Department moving to accelerate process.

by on Dec.27, 2018

Russian automaker GAZ is looking to get the U.S. to lift sanctions off the company so it can do business here.

The Russian and U.S. governments are discussing lifting the U.S. sanctions on a Russian automaker, GAZ, which is part of a holding company in which a prominent Russian oligarch, Oleg Deripaska, has a key stake.

The talks aimed at lifting U.S. sanctions on Russian automaker GAZ are ongoing with the U.S. Treasury Department, and the company is implementing internal measures to encourage the process, Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said, according to Reuters.

Global News!

The U.S. Treasury extended a deadline for investors to divest from GAZ to March 7, a day after it announced it would lift sanctions on the core assets of Deripaska’s empire — Rusal, the world’s second largest aluminum company, and its parent En+ of which GAZ is also a part. Read the rest of this entry »

Year-End Turmoil Puts New Car Sales to the Test

Political fighting potentially slows new car sales.

by on Dec.26, 2018

The Christmas season means good cheer and good deals on new vehicles making it the second-best month for sales.

The final week of 2018 could offer some critical signals both for future car sales and the future course of the U.S. economy, which has been rattled by tumbling stocks and noisy political fights about the independence of the Federal Reserve Board and the government shutdown triggered by a bitter partisan fight over funding for President Donald Trump’s border wall.

During the last two decades, December has become one of the busiest months of the years for new vehicle sales. Manufacturers have packed have been advertising year-end deals since before Thanksgiving, and carmakers also have uncorked the incentive cash.

Business News!

But the end of the month is traditionally the period when dealers close a large number of sales and it is yet to be determined whether turmoil surrounding the stock market and in Washington D.C. will actually have an impact on sales of new vehicles. Read the rest of this entry »

Nissan Exec Kelly Released; Ghosn Still in Tokyo Detention

Late-night release comes five weeks after arrest.

by on Dec.26, 2018

Greg Kelly's wife told Japanese TV that she believes her husband is a victim of a Nissan power grab.

Greg Kelly, an ousted Nissan Motor Co. executive caught up in a financial corruption scandal, has been released on bail after being held for more than a month in the Tokyo Detention Center.

Kelly was arrested Nov. 19, immediately after arriving in Japan on a corporate jet. He accompanied Carlos Ghosn, then Nissan’s chairman, as well as the head of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance. Ghosn, who is at the center of the scandal, will remain in detention until at least Jan. 1.

Global News!

Prosecutors had also attempted to keep Kelly in custody, arguing he is a flight risk. The court ultimately ruled that he could be released on bail of 70 million yen, or $636,000. The American executive must also abide by restrictions on his movement. Read the rest of this entry »

Daimler Delivers E-Truck to Penske for Testing

Penske testing Freightliner medium-duty battery-electric truck.

by on Dec.24, 2018

Daimler AG's Freightliner subsidiary delivered the first battery-electric medium-truck truck to Penske for testing.

Daimler AG has pushed ahead with its plans to sell electric trucks as Freightliner, its North American subsidiary, delivered its first medium-duty battery-electric truck to a customer in the U.S.

Penske Truck Leasing, which is operated long-time Daimler ally, Roger Penske, plans to operate the electric truck in local distribution traffic in the Northwest Pacific and in California, Daimler announced

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With the delivery of the Freightliner eM2, Daimler Trucks is starting day-to-day operational testing of heavy-duty and medium-duty e-trucks in the United States, Daimler said. Read the rest of this entry »

Shifting Market, Declining Sales Force Nissan to Cut Production, Jobs in Mexico

Automaker wants to “maintain production in line with demand.”

by on Dec.21, 2018

A new Sentra on the Nissan assembly plant in Aguascalientes, Mexico. Poor sales of the Sentra and other Nissan cars are the reason for 1,000 layoffs.

Facing declining demand in the North American market, as well as other headwinds, Nissan confirmed it will cut production at two Mexican assembly plants and lay off about 1,000 workers “over the next several months.”

Layoffs have already begun at the Nissan plant in Aguascalientes that produces models such as the Sentra sedan for the Mexican domestic market, as well as for the U.S. and other export markets, Nissan spokesman Brian Brockman told TheDetroitBureau.com.

The Last Word!

“We’ve seen a decline in sales in Mexico, which is one of the driving forces, as is an overall decline in North American sales,” said Brockman. Read the rest of this entry »

Want a Good Deal on a New Car? Now May be the Time!

Big cash incentives, discounted interest rates may equal a good buy.

by on Dec.21, 2018

If you still want a new vehicle during the holidays, some of those big red bows may still be available.

Plenty of automotive experts are predicting that new vehicle sales this year will unexpectedly surpass last year’s results. Part of that is the flurry of activity they’re expecting this month, including the week between Christmas and New Year.

Auto dealers are often busiest at this time of year as they try to squeeze out the last of the new 2018 models and automakers are working to help them with an uptick in incentives and discount financing to entice new buyers to make one more holiday purchase.

Business News!

For those in the market to put a big red bow on top of a new sedan, minivan or sport-utility, now is the time to get out there; however, there are couple of days in particular you should consider, according to Cars.com. Read the rest of this entry »

Hit With New Charges, Ghosn to Remain in Tokyo Jail

Additional charges could follow as prosecutors push to retain exec in custody.

by on Dec.21, 2018

Nissan's one-time CEO Carlos Ghosn could face 20 years or more in prison with the new charges.

Barely a day after a Japanese court took steps that could have led to the release of Carlos Ghosn from a detention center in Tokyo, prosecutors have taken steps that will ensure the former Nissan chairman will be spending Christmas behind bars.

The 64-year-old executive, along with former Nissan colleague Greg Kelly, were arrested on November 19 and accused of a series of financial misdeeds, formal charges being announced last week. Now, however, Ghosn has been rearrested, prosecutors accusing him of breach of trust, a move that means they can hold him in the Tokyo Detention Centre for at least another 10 days. And further charges could follow, according to reports from Japan.

Breaking News!

Prosecutors said Friday that Ghosn alleged transferred losses from a private investment to Nissan, a move that reportedly saved him more than $16 million. The accusations also cover what prosecutors say was the transfer of another $14.7 million that benefited Ghosn and a Saudi Arabian citizen who helped create a fake contract.

Read the rest of this entry »

Ford Recalls 874K Pickups Due to Fire Problem

No accidents or injuries reported resulting from issue.

by on Dec.21, 2018

Ford is recalling nearly 875,000 trucks in the U.S. and Canada for a potential fire hazard.

Ford announced a recall of 874,000 pickup trucks in North America with engine block heaters that can, under certain circumstances, catch fire.

The Dearborn, Michigan-based automaker said it is unaware of any reported accidents or injuries that have occurred as a result of the problem.

Recall News!

According to the automaker, water and contaminants may get into the block heater cable’s splice connector, causing corrosion and other damage.  Read the rest of this entry »

GM Listens to Unifor Proposals about Canadian Plant

Executives promise response by Jan. 7.

by on Dec.21, 2018

Unifor President Jerry Dias called his meeting with GM officials "frustrating," but also noted officials said they'd keep an "open mind" during negotiations.

General Motors Co. is promising to respond by Jan. 7, to Unifor, the Canadian union that represents GM workers, which has laid out proposals that would maintain production at an assembly plant in Oshawa, Ontario, GM is preparing to shutter permanently.

Unifor President Jerry Dias met with senior GM officials in Detroit Thursday to make the case that the Ontario plant should be kept open. “The meeting today was frustrating,” said Dias at a press conference in Windsor on the Canadian side of the Detroit River.

News Now!

“But in the meeting today, General Motors did not unilaterally slam the door either,” Dias said during the press conference. “They announced that they would listen to our proposals and they would get back to us by the 7th of January whether or not they will work with us to find a solution.” Read the rest of this entry »

First Drive: 2019 Mazda MX-5 Miata

A big experience in a small package.

by on Dec.20, 2018

The 2019 Mazda MX-5 Miata provides an exciting driving experience in a small package.

Sporty two-seaters, despite the glamour and romance that has trailed behind them over the years, have sort of been left behind as car buyers rush into trucks and sport-utility vehicles.

But some two-seaters, such as the Mazda MX-5 Miata, are still out on the road, still fun to drive and continuing to evolve with the addition of new technology.

Reviews to Trust!

Even in a blustery Michigan December, the MX-5 reveals its power, spirit and great driving dynamics that effortlessly handle everything from crosswinds to lumpy pavement and tightly curving freeway ramps.  Read the rest of this entry »

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