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Last April the UK press reported that the Top Gear hosts were in line for a new three-year deal through 2018 - one that would pay Clarkson four million pounds per year - but the negotiations were put off during a media watchdog investigation. With that done, the deal is set to go ahead that will lock in new episodes until 2018.

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Billionaire investor George Soros and his company Soros Fund Management are seriously investigating following Warren Buffett's lead and buying an auto dealer body. A Soros representative was reportedly trying to sell dealers on the idea during a private dinner, indicating that current management would stay in place, if the company invested.

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Although there were hints and allegations that the Volkswagen Group might have taken the global sales crown for 2014, the final tally puts Toyota at the top for the third year in a row with 10.23 million sales in 2014. Volkswagen Group came second with 10.14 million units sold, General Motors came third with 9.92 million units sold. In 2015, however, the top two positions are expected to swap.

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A mystery investor is reportedly swooping in at the last minute to save the Marussia F1 team from bankruptcy in time to get it back on the grid for the 2015 Formula One World Championship.

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The first examples of the new Ford Shelby GT350R, Chevy Corvette Z06 Convertible and Cadillac CTS-V donated by their manufacturers have brought in millions for charity at Barrett-Jackson's 2015 Scottsdale auction.

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Since 2006, the German Grand Prix has alternated between Hockenheim and the Nürburgring. But after the latter was taken over by new owners, a dispute over fees will see it staying at Hockenheim for the time being.

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Tesla founder Elon Musk's tough talk at the Detroit Auto Show about the company's prospects damaged its stock price, which suffered a nine-percent drop.

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Volvo Cars may have been acquired by a Chinese automaker, but over at its former parent company, the tide of ownership has gone in the opposite direction as the Volvo Group has acquired 45 percent of Dongfeng's truck operations.

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Reuters reports that BMW has agreed to pay its Chinese dealers 5.1 billion yuan ($820 million) to help them overcome huge inventories and poor profits last year. Audi and Daimler have are also subsidizing Chinese dealers with hundreds of millions of dollars as the local auto market slows down.

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After moving nearly 190,000 units in 2014, Porsche is expecting to hit its 200,000-unit goal three years ahead of schedule, thanks in part to the new Macan.

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A member of European Parliament has written to the European Commission, asking it to review the FIA and how the small teams in the sport are treated. The FIA appears to have breached an agreement it made with European regulators in 2001, and the F1 Strategy Group is accused of running teams and support companies out of business.

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The Canadian auto market was hot in 2014 and posted recorded sales. Leader among them for the fifth straight year was Ford, but the Blue Oval nearly lost its sales crown. A rally from FCA put it within about 2,000 units of being the biggest automaker in the Great White North.

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Cadillac informed dealers today that it will be trimming the price of its 2015 CTS by anywhere from $1,000 to $3,000 amid slow sales and dealer complaints.

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An article in the Daily Kanban suggests, the sun is setting on GM Korea, and it could already be well into dusk. GM's move into China, the Chevrolet exit from Europe and years of labor strife are driving the division over the edge.

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The Ford Transit took the reins as America's best-selling van in December. The Blue Oval's recently introduced full-size van line sold 10,030 units to take the title, and impressively, the model nearly doubled its annual sales in those 31 days to reach 20,488-units for all of 2014. It also beat Ford's own aging E-Series in sales for the second consecutive month.

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How the mighty have fallen. After Marussia and Caterham both went bankrupt, the revised entry list for the 2015 Formula One World Championship lists the once-formidable Lotus team as "subject to confirmation," raising questions over the now-independent team's viability.

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The FAW-Toyota joint venture is struggling in China. Around 10 percent of dealers might have to shut their doors and 95 percent are reportedly operating at a loss this year. The sellers are complaining that their lots are packed with cars that can't be sold, and they're asking for money from Toyota to deal with the problem.

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This month, Audi said it will boost spending by two billion euros ($2.5B US) over the next five years, for a total outlay of 24 billion euros from 2014 to 2019. Something like 70 percent of those billions will be spent on new models, technology like "connectivity and lightweight construction," and factory expansion at its plants in Ingolstadt and Neckarsulm.

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The final tally on the cost of the US auto industry bailout is in. With the recent sale of shares of Ally Financial, the Feds invested $79.69 billion to keep GM, Chrysler and their financing divisions afloat and recouped $70.43 billion – a net loss of $9.26 billion. However, in the government's official numbers it lost $16.56 billion because the smaller number factored in interest and dividend payments. The total was still far less red ink spilled than some estimates predicted.

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The Autodromo Nazionale Monza has been a mainstay of Formula One since its inception, but if it doesn't get the funding it needs, it could find itself in serious trouble - and lose the Italian Grand Prix in the process.

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The US Treasury will come out ahead on its bailout of Ally Financial, unloading its final shares for an estimated $1.25 billion and bringing its total profits on the Ally rescue to $18.3 billion on a $17.2 billion investment. That's a net win.

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