Archive

Archive for the ‘Car Politics’ Category

Are We Reaching the End of the Single-Occupancy Vehicle?

December 9th, 2015
How do we fix this?

How do we fix this?

The way we drive in cities can’t be sustained during the years to come.

As our population grows, so do the number of vehicles in our large metropolitan areas. In 2012, over 76 percent of vehicles in the United States were occupied by one person during the average commute. There were 256 million vehicles registered in the United States in 2013, which explains the massive congestion encountered in cities across the country every day.

Although we can’t easily increase the capacity of our roads, ever more people will need access to American cities.

What’s the solution?

Well, for now, there isn’t one. But some prominent people think the end of the single-occupancy vehicle is in our future.

Continue reading >>>

Car Industry News, Car Minded, Car Politics, General Chat , , ,

Volkswagen’s Sales Sink While Problems Mount

December 8th, 2015

Volkswagen

Maybe the word “Volkswagen” translates to “problems” in German.

News broke in September of the company’s intentional deception regarding the emissions of its diesel engines. October sales were relatively flat, and dealers felt confident that they could weather the storm with VW’s support.

November, however, told a different story.

Volkswagen sales in the United States collapsed by 25 percent last month. Dealers had hoped that things would improve, Autoweek says,

But as Volkswagen drifts into a third month of a seemingly unbound scandal, that tone is changing and dealer frustrations are bubbling to the surface. The absence of a ready-to-go fix, plus continuing inventory shortages and the prospect of more new-car sales pain, is stirring angst and even anger in VW’s dealer network.

Falling sales are only part of the scandal’s continuing consequences.

Continue reading >>>

Car Industry News, Car Minded, Car Politics, Car Shopping, Foreign Cars, General Chat, New Cars , , , , ,

Volkswagen Scandal Deepens, New Offer Made to Owners

November 10th, 2015

volkswagen_goodwill_program

Things aren’t getting any easier for Volkswagen.

When the diesel emissions scandal broke in September, the problem was limited to 11 million vehicles equipped with the company’s 2.0-liter TDI engine. That alone was a crippling blow to the company that some estimates said could top $18 billion in damages.

The situation hasn’t improved in the weeks since.

Volkswagen, at least publicly, has done very little to let customers know how it will proceed in fixing the affected vehicles. In the meantime, the U.S. government has accused VW of cheating on additional vehicles, and Volkswagen itself has found another 800,000 cars that are probably affected.

Continue reading >>>

Car Industry News, Car Minded, Car Politics, Foreign Cars, General Chat , , , ,

To Keep or Sell a Volkswagen TDI?

September 28th, 2015
The Jetta TDI: It sure looks green, doesn't it?

The Jetta TDI: It sure looks green, doesn’t it?

The implications of the Volkswagen diesel scandal are, without a doubt, enormous.

There’s a lot of talk about what it means for the company’s brand and the future of its diesel program, not to mention questions about the validity of diesel in general.

But what about the people who own Volkswagen diesel vehicles? What will this do to their brand loyalty and perhaps more importantly, how will it affect the resale value of their vehicles?

Continue reading >>>

Car Industry News, Car Minded, Car Politics, Car Shopping, Foreign Cars, General Chat , , ,

Volkswagen: TDI or TD Lie?

September 21st, 2015

2015_volkswagen_jetta-pic-2687671922287613144

What if it was revealed that your gas/electric hybrid wasn’t really a hybrid? Or what if Ford fans discovered their prized 5.0 V8 was actually only 4.3 liters? What if a Chevrolet claimed a 0-60 time of 4.3 seconds but was only capable of 5.2?

Automakers sell their cars with the promise that they will achieve a certain performance benchmark. Sometimes that benchmark is speed, sometimes it’s fuel economy, and sometimes it’s something a little less noticeable: emissions numbers.

As you’ve probably heard by now, Volkswagen is being accused of deliberately deceiving its customers, and the U.S. government, with cars that emit much more pollution than claimed. This is bad for a number of reasons, but the worst might be the loss of trust in its vaunted TDI brand.

Continue reading >>>

Car Industry News, Car Minded, Car Politics, Car Shopping, Foreign Cars, Gas for your car..., General Chat, New Cars , , , ,

Should Fiat and General Motors Merge?

June 29th, 2015

Fiat_GM_merger

Is Chrysler ready for another merger?

The U.S. automaker recently wrapped up a takeover by Italian automaker Fiat and was subsequently renamed Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, or FCA.

Now FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne has his eyes on another merger:

A takeover of General Motors.

Continue reading >>>

Car Industry News, Car Minded, Car Politics, General Chat , , ,

Do You Prefer a Gas Tax or a Miles-Driven Tax?

May 26th, 2015
Should owners of electric vehicles have to pay taxes for roads?

Should owners of electric vehicles have to pay taxes for roads?

Some ideas are destined to never work.

The hoverboard is one. So is the flying car. A peanut-butter-and-sardine sandwich would also make the list of ideas not likely to catch on.

The state of Oregon is about to discover one more: a miles-driven tax in place of a fuel tax.

The slow rise of electric and hybrid vehicles, in addition to improved fuel economy in vehicles powered by fossil fuels, has presented state governments with a new problem: how to fund roads with less money coming in from fuel taxes.

Continue reading >>>

Car Minded, Car Politics, Gas for your car..., General Chat, Green Updates , , , ,

NEMPA Panels Dig Into Green Vehicle Technology

May 22nd, 2015

DSCN1961

This week we attended the New England Motor Press Association (NEMPA)’s panel discussion on the future of green vehicle technology, California’s Zero Emission Vehicle mandate, and mass-market adoption of these technologies. It was a terrific, fruitful discussion. Two 4-person panels brought together expertise and opinions from automakers, energy research groups, electric utilities, and state politicians as they discussed the industry’s current strategies and what needs to change to increase the desirability and sales of Zero Emission Vehicles (ZEVs).

Continue reading >>>

Car Industry News, Car Minded, Car Politics, Electric Vehicles, General Chat, Green Updates, Hybrid Cars

Should Modifying Your Car Be Illegal?

April 22nd, 2015

working on own car

Driveway tinkerers and shop-bound weekend racers could be a dying breed.

There are two main reasons for this:

  1. People who work on their own cars are stymied by the sheer amount of technology and custom tools needed to do the job.
  2. A new law could make it illegal to work on your own car.

The first reason is a natural consequence of technology. Open the hood of a modern car, and instead of seeing headers and valve covers, we’re greeted with a plastic cover emblematized with the vehicle’s logo and engine size.

Aside from having easy access to refill the windshield-wiper fluid, modern cars are basically untouchable for the average weekend do-it-yourselfer.

That in itself isn’t so bad, but a law that would outlaw us from even trying is very scary. And very real.

Continue reading >>>

Car Industry News, Car Minded, Car Politics, Car Safety, General Chat , , , , ,

Will Self-Driving Cars Take Away Your Driving Freedom?

February 18th, 2015

Uber self-driving car

Read this quote, and then we’ll discuss:

Autonomous cars will be commonplace by 2025 and have a near monopoly by 2030, and the sweeping change they bring will eclipse every other innovation our society has experienced. They will cause unprecedented job loss and a fundamental restructuring of our economy, solve large portions of our environmental problems, prevent tens of thousands of deaths per year, save millions of hours with increased productivity, and create entire new industries that we cannot even imagine from our current vantage point.

The author goes into a great deal of predictions on what is to come for the future of cars that drive themselves, even going so far as to say the majority of car purchases won’t be by individuals, but by car-sharing and transport services like Uber and Zipcar.

Continue reading >>>

Car Industry News, Car Minded, Car Politics, Car Shopping, General Chat , , , , ,