Plus: North American Car Award Finalists Announced, The Porsche 918 Sells Out And Bentley Expands For SUV DevelopmentPlus: North American Car Award Finalists Announced, The Porsche 918 Sells Out And Bentley Expands For SUV Development
But as BMW's X6 has demonstrated, sport sells in in the crossover segment, and Mercedes is giving the people what they want.
Some automotive assembly plants have test tracks on premises. We've even heard of a few that have test tracks on the roof. But at GM's Ellesmere Port factory in the UK, one driver performs his tests inside the factory, and has been doing so for the past half century.
An audit at the Volkswagen factory in Chattanooga, TN has revealed that at least 45 percent of the facility's workers support unionization, leading the German company to grant access rights to the United Auto Workers.
The world's fastest lorries. That's how Ettore Bugatti referred to cars from Bentley back in the day, employing the British term for trucks, long before the two became sister companies. Those immortal words will come true when Bentley launches its new SUV, which promises not only to be the most luxurious and prestigious but also the first to crack the 200-mile-per-hour mark. But it won't come without its share of investment.
Plants close all the time, but not in Germany. In fact, according to the latest report from TheDetroitBureau.com, there hasn't been an automotive assembly plant closed in Germany since the end of World War II – but one has closed now.
It seems Takata has manufacturing issues beyond the technical details of its airbags. The Japanese company is not in the good graces of American authorities after declining a national recall in response to faulty airbag deployments, while authorities in Mexico are unhappy with health and safety issues at Takata's plant in Monclava, Mexico, where millions of inflators are being produced to service automaker recalls.
A decision last week by the National Labor Relations Board has bolstered the efforts of the United Auto Workers at Mercedes-Benz's Tuscaloosa, AL factory, as the union continues its attempts to represent the factory's workers.
Willy Wonka granted just five lucky Golden Ticket holders access to his incredible chocolate factory, yet we consider ourselves just as fortunate, as Porsche invited us to be among the first of just four American journalists to see behind the closed doors of its 918 Spyder assembly plant in Zuffenhausen, Germany. Of course, there were no Oompa Loompas or flowing chocolate rivers, but the vast white hall tasked with producing only 918 examples of the automaker's limited-production flagship reveal
Michelin will start pushing harder on its various budget tire lines in a bid to combat the amount of cheap rubber coming out of China, changing up its product mix so that more affordable offerings count for between 25 and 30 percent instead of the current 15-to-20-percent mix.
Pretty much right on schedule, Chevrolet has begun shipping the very first customer examples of its 650-horsepower, supercharged Corvette Z06. In fact, according to General Motors, the earliest Z06s could be in customer hands by the end of this week.
The Dodge Viper has muscled its way back into buyers' good graces thanks to a $15,000 price drop across-the-board – and we're sure the extra five horsepower didn't hurt, either – posting a 26-percent year-to-date surge after the September realignment. No longer, uh, snakebitten, Dodge is now allowing dealers to place already-sold orders of the TA 2.0 Special Edition and GTS, both of which come with more goodies as standard than on the 2014 models they replace.
Based on what we've seen so far, were Chrysler to move Jeep Wrangler production out of Toledo, the effect would be devastating to the city's morale, which has never been quite the same after it was forced to become part of Ohio following the Toledo War.
Toyota's decision to move its US headquarters from its longtime home in Torrance, CA, to Plano, TX, was one of the biggest stories in the automotive industry this spring. With several months since the announcement, more details about the plan have leaked out. It seems that pulling up stakes could mean an even larger shakeup in the Toyota workforce than first thought.
If you need the extra convenience of four doors but don't want to give up the thrill of high performance, the Chevrolet SS represents a potent package. The exterior is understated and the design certainly doesn't scream about the 415-horsepower, 6.2-liter V8 hiding beneath the hood. Unfortunately, there are some questions about how long this muscle sedan will last.
Michelin has been showing off its idea of combining the wheel and tire into a single component as far back as 2005. Dubbed the Tweel, the novel design replaced standard pneumatic tires and metal wheels with deforming spokes around a hub. While uses of the Tweel are still limited, the tech is about to get a big upgrade in production with Michelin opening a dedicated factory to build them in Piedmont, SC, on November 20.
Would a Bentley be a Bentley if it weren't manufactured in Great Britain? Would a Lamborghini be a Lamborghini if it were built outside of Italy? It may be hard to say either way, but we might find out sooner than later, because the latest word coming in from Europe is that the Volkswagen Group is considering expanding production for both these upscale brands outside their traditional homes.