What Will Faraday Future Build in Nevada?

Could Faraday Future build something like this?

Could Faraday Future build something like this?

There’s a carmaker investing a billion dollars in a new Nevada factory. This factory will employ 4,500 people and produce a new breed of electric car.

Sounds like Tesla, doesn’t it?

After all, Tesla recently broke ground on a $1.3 billion factory in Nevada to build batteries for its vehicles. But Tesla isn’t building this other factory. It’s being built by a company that has never released a vehicle and has never even produced a public concept.

How is that possible?

Frankly, I don’t know. But Faraday Future, the mysterious California automaker with funding from a Chinese billionaire, seems to have a plan.

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More Changes Coming for Ford Trucks

2016_ford_f-150

Ford sure enjoys shaking up the truck industry.

In recent years, the maker of the best-selling trucks in America was the first to introduce a turbocharged V6 to the full-size pickup market and build a truck with aluminum body panels.

Both moves were huge gambles–Ford risked the loss of market share, not to mention the ridicule of truck buyers and competitors alike.

An amazing thing happened, though. People continued to buy the trucks in droves and competitors have announced plans to follow Ford’s path.

Now it looks like Ford will push the limits again.

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CarGurus’ 2015 Model-Year Heroes

XV Crosstrek Zoom

As more and more 2016 cars pour onto (and off of) dealership lots and our planet Earth approaches yet another successful revolution around the Sun, it’s time to wave farewell to the automotive Class of 2015. In 2014, BMW brought us the spaceship-like i8 and first showed us its new 2 and 4 Series coupes. Jaguar rolled onto the scene with its convertible F-TYPE, putting the rest of the sports-car world on notice, and Chevrolet responded with authority as it unveiled the C7 Corvette. But, if anything, 2015 brought even more excitement to the market. Dodge began selling 707-hp Hellcats, Jaguar put a roof on the F-Type, Volvo brought a stunning new wagon to the United States, and Jeep gave us a Renegade that is surprisingly good off-road.

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Don’t Be the Next Victim of a Rollover Accident

Jeep-grand-Cherokee_rollover

Cars can roll over more easily than you might think.

In the time it takes to blink, a driver can be cruising the highway and then suddenly find his or her vehicle tumbling side-over-side.

According to SaferCar.gov, 33 percent of all passenger-vehicle fatalities are caused by rollovers.

You might read that and assume it won’t happen to you because you’re a safe driver, but let me tell you a quick story.

Earlier this week, on her way to work, my wife witnessed a rollover accident. The morning was cold and snowy, but the highway looked dry. As she merged onto the highway, she discovered it was covered in a thin, invisible layer of ice. A brand new SUV in front of her began to fishtail. The vehicle, moving at about 60 miles per hour, slid onto the soft shoulder, which sent it into an airborne flip. The SUV landed on its roof, crushing it, then rolled at least four times before coming to rest upside down.

It all happened within a matter of seconds.

That could have been my wife. Or your wife. Or you. Rollover accidents are especially scary, but there are ways to minimize your risk.

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What Automotive Trends Will Shoppers See in 2016 Cars?

Ford got an autonomous vehicle driving permit to test the autonomous Fusion Hybrid on California public roads.

Ford has secured a permit to test the autonomous Fusion Hybrid on California public roads.

Auto-show season kicked off in earnest in November with the Los Angeles Auto Show. The show was an excellent harbinger of things to come as we look ahead to the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas and the North American International Auto Show in Detroit in just a few short weeks.

The L.A. show provoked me to pose a question to some expert analysts and automotive journalists as to what trends the car-buying public can expect to see in debuting new cars.

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Mazda Steps Forward to Take on the Subaru Outback

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The original Subaru Outback ultimately changed the landscape of the auto business. That first Outback was just a Legacy wagon with a lift and some body cladding, but it ultimately resulted in a whole new class of vehicle.

The irony here is that Subaru is the only automaker to see major commercial success with the sedan-like crossover. Others have tried, but so far the Outback is the only car of its kind to routinely sell in large volumes year after year, and it has evolved today into one of the best all-wheel-drive family wagons/crossovers that money can buy.

It’s a lucrative market but no one else has succeeded with an Outback-like wagon because no one else can do it like Subaru.

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Can Ford “Excite and Delight” With Electric Cars by 2020?

Ford_Focus_Electric

The odds are pretty good that you’ll purchase a plug-in electric or hybrid vehicle within the next four years.

Why am I so confident?

Here’s a short rundown of companies that have announced major plans for electric cars by 2020:

Tesla will be in production with the Model S, Model X, and Model 3 Porsche will be in production of the Mission E Concept Volvo expects to add plug-in hybrid vehicles to its entire range Audi says 25 percent of its range will eventually be electric Nissan wants to rule the EV mass market

And now, Ford is investing $4.5 billion into electric vehicles so it’ll have 13 EV models by, you guessed it, 2020.

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Farewell to the Models That Won’t Return for 2016

2014 Honda Crosstour

Every year, we are greeted with new and exciting cars to ogle, question, revere, and, at times, deride. The arrival of fresh metal, however, brings with it the retirement of models automakers deemed either to be under-performing or as having simply run their course. The departure of various models can be a mixed bag. Some discontinuations, like the revered Honda S2000 (2000–2009), are met with disappointment. Others, such as the Cadillac Cimarron (1982–1988), leave us wondering how a car like that could have lasted 7 years in the first place. The transition from 2015 to 2016 is no different; some of these cars we’ll miss, others we won’t. Continue reading >>>

EPA Scrutinizes BMW X5 Diesel: It’s Approved!

2014-bmw-x5-xdrive35d

I don’t envy the automaker trying to get a diesel approved for the U.S. market right now.

The Environmental Protection Agency is on high alert after Volkswagen managed to dupe it and sell a half-million highly polluting cars right under its nose. Now, any automaker that hopes to sell diesels in the U.S. will first need to submit the vehicles in question to rigorous examination and testing by the highly suspicious agency before being given the green light to stock dealers.

Getting the EPA’s sign-off was supremely difficult even before the VW scandal. It was so hard, in fact, that Volkswagen deemed it easier to engineer a cheat device than to engineer a car that could pass the strict emissions requirements.

Automotive News opened a story on the topic with this quote:

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Porsche Aims for Tesla With the Mission E Concept

Porsche-Mission-E-Concept

The year 2012 could go down in history as the year electric cars became mainstream.

Naturally we have Tesla to thank for that, as its much-hyped Model S finally began arriving for customers that year. In the few short years since, the car has exploded in popularity, become more reliable, gotten faster, and incorporated some of the most advanced technology the auto industry has ever seen.

Other carmakers have taken notice and are watching Tesla closely.

One of the best ways to determine if a company will fade away or become a disruptive force that will challenge the world’s biggest automakers is to see if the established automakers respond.

Porsche has taken the bait and responded by becoming the first automaker to announce a car that truly emulates the Model S. Will its all-electric Mission E succeed in disrupting the disrupter?

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