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Archive for the ‘Foreign Cars’ Category

Which U.S. Car Brand Should China Buy?

April 4th, 2014
Lincoln: Could it be sold to China?

Lincoln: Could it be sold to China?

When you and I go shopping for a new or used car, we start by thinking about the features we want, the brands we’re attracted to and the price we want to pay.

It’s a similar process when corporations look for a brand they want to acquire. The problem for corporations is that buying used is the only option and there’s a lot less inventory available. However, acquiring a brand is much easier than starting a new one.

Automakers in China have wanted a piece of the U.S. auto market for at least a decade, but have lacked the ability to break into the country.

Now, things are about to get serious.

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Should the Nissan Titan Still Exist?

April 3rd, 2014

2013_nissan_titan

When a Q7 feels small, you know you’re next to a big vehicle.

I forget sometimes just how big some trucks are, especially in areas outside of big cities. Every once in a while I venture into North Idaho and am surprised, each time, by how many pickups fill the parking lots of places like Costco and Walmart. Not just regular trucks like the average F-150, but jacked up rigs that reach a thousand feet into the sky and have tires big enough to flatten a Prius in one revolution.

The purpose of these trucks, I assume, is similar to why peacocks have massive feather displays: an effort to prove masculinity and win chicks. I’m not so sure that works in the human world as well as it does in the animal kingdom, but that doesn’t stop guys from trying.

Not just any truck, though, can qualify to be a massive hogger of rural American parking lots.

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Objects in Mirror Could Soon Disappear

April 2nd, 2014
Tesla-Model-X-Concept

Hey look, no mirrors

How many cameras do we need in our cars?

Back in 2010 we posted an article that said the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration would require backup cameras in all new vehicles by September 2014.

Obviously that mandate didn’t come to fruition, and the good ol’ fashioned rear view mirror has continued to function perfectly fine.

During the time of that 2010 article, I remember thinking backup cameras were an unnecessary and expensive piece of technology. In the last four years, though, I’ve come into possession of a 2013 Subaru equipped with a backup camera and I never want to go back.

Now there’s a new mandate from the NHTSA, along with new technology coming from the most innovative automaker on the planet that could eventually eliminate the simplest piece of automotive safety gear: the mirror.

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Car Industry News, Car Minded, Car Safety, Domestic Cars, Foreign Cars, General Chat , , ,

Farewell, Great Evo, and Good Riddance

April 1st, 2014

Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X

Mitsubishi sales are circling the drain. The carmaker hasn’t had a major commercial success since, well, ever. I can’t think of a single model that reviewers and consumers alike have lauded as the best in any class.

There is one car that has given Mitsubishi a huge dose of respect in this country: the Lancer Evolution. While every other Mitsubishi in the stable is pretty much a bargain-basement find shoppers settle for when they can’t afford a Toyota, the Evo, as it is known, is something special.

The Evo, a suped-up and turbocharged version of the homely Lancer, is the most extraordinary car Mitsubishi has ever built.

And it’s finally being killed off.

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Here Comes Tesla’s Competition

March 28th, 2014

Commuter Cars Tango and George Clooney

When you think of electric cars, the first maker to come to mind is probably Tesla. The company has done an amazing job branding itself as the leader in vehicles powered by electrons. With sexy car designs, lots of media coverage and a personable-yet-eccentric CEO, Tesla has become the gold standard in electric vehicles.

That doesn’t mean Tesla is alone, though.

Other carmakers build and sell vehicles that use alternative fuels, and there’s no way the legacy automakers are going to sit down and watch Tesla silently drive into the sunset with all the cash.

From the big boys to some small guys with big ideas, it seems EVs are here to stay. Keep reading for some interesting competitors Tesla may face.

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Underdog Chrysler 200 Goes for the Win

March 27th, 2014

2015 Chrysler 200C and 2015 Chrysler 200S

We root for the underdog.

We want the Cinderella team at the NCAA tournament to advance to the Elite Eight. We want to see the #15 seed defeat the #2 seed, and we get excited when a 35-point football underdog pulls out an overtime victory.

In the automotive world, there is no greater underdog than the Chrysler 200. It has to overcome the stigma of being based on the Sebring, the constant deriding by reviewers across the land and the low-quality association of being a rental-car stalwart.

With the 2015 model, Chrysler and new owner FIAT know things have to change. In order to be a viable and profitable company, Chrysler simply must field a competitor to the top-selling cars in its class: the Toyota Camry, Honda Accord, Ford Fusion and even the Nissan Altima.

This is an underdog story like no other.

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

Mercedes-Benz Starts Car Shopping, Looks at Aston Martin

March 18th, 2014

Aston_martin

We all want more. Whatever it is, we’re never content with what we have. We need more money, a bigger home, more ice cream and a better car.

This is as true for corporations as it is for individuals.

The guy with a BMW eventually grows tired of his ol’ Beemer and wants a Rolls-Royce. The Porsche driver might tire of his sports car and want to upgrade to a Lamborghini. It’s the nature of humans to strive for the next attainable goal.

Since humans own corporations, they too never stop making purchases to expand.

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

Cars of Ireland: The Shamrock and the Costin

March 17th, 2014

Shamrock_car

Since everyone’s Irish today, let’s take a moment and remember the cars that were built on the green isle. The first one to come to mind, and the most successful car assembled in Ireland, was the DeLorean DMC-12. Regardless of the fact that the DeLorean is also a time machine, it sold only about 8,500 copies before the company shut down.

Because we’ve covered the DeLorean on this blog again and again, that’s the only time it’ll be mentioned here today.

Yes, believe it or not, it’s possible to discuss Ireland’s car industry without mentioning the DeLorean. The country certainly isn’t known for its auto industry, which today is non-existent, but a couple of interesting little automotive gems existed there in the past.

Good luck finding one today, though.

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New Fisker Owner Alienates Existing Owners

March 14th, 2014

Fisker Karma

Let’s say you bought a Chevrolet. Not just any Chevrolet, but a really nice expensive one. In fact, let’s say you went crazy and checked all the boxes on a 2014 Corvette Stingray 3LT with the ZL5 performance package, carbon fiber roof, racing stripes—the whole shebang.

The purchase set you back about $75,000, but you love the car.

Now fast-forward two years. Let’s say General Motors had some serious trouble, went bankrupt (again), but this time was purchased by a foreign company. That company vowed to put products, like your Corvette, back into production but stop supporting, warranting or servicing models produced before bankruptcy.

How would you react?

For the answer, please speak with your nearest Fisker Karma owner.

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Car Industry News, Car Minded, Car Shopping, Domestic Cars, Electric Vehicles, Exotic Cars, Foreign Cars, General Chat , , , , , , ,

Average Family Can’t Afford Average Car

March 13th, 2014
Even a Kia can top $30,000

Even a Kia can top $30,000

The average cost of a new car in America is now over $32,000. The average American household income is about $51,000. That means the day has finally come that the average American family can’t afford the average American new car.

That, friends, is a problem.

Why are cars getting so expensive? I remember shopping for new cars just 10 years ago and looking in the mid-$20,000 range for a decent family hauler. A car over $32K was simply excessive. In our modern times, though, excessive has become the new normal, and nothing good can come of that.

There’s a simple solution, of course, if you want to buck the system and tell the makers of new cars that you’ve had enough. Continue reading >>>

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