In the course of just a few short weeks, the coronavirus (COVID-19) has had a devastating effect on daily life in America, as well as each of the automakers that builds cars here. Tens of thousands have been infected, hundreds have died, many are unemployed or furloughed, and most of us have been advised to stay at home except for occasional runs for essentials like groceries and medications.[Read more…] about U.S. Automakers Respond to the Coronavirus Pandemic
Your Next BMW: Built in China?
If Chinese quality has become good enough for Buick, Volvo, and BMW, there’s a good chance it’s good enough for you.
Cars made in China have long been associated with questionable reliability, gaps in body panels, and sub-standard safety features. Those days may be behind us, however, as foreign automakers continue to invest in Chinese manufacturing.
The Buick Envision and Volvo S60 are the first made-in-China cars imported for sale in the U.S., and they are each getting mostly positive reviews from auto journalists around the country.
Now BMW seems ready to further elevate Chinese manufacturing and import models built in China for sale to customers in Germany and the United States. Continue reading >>>
Can BMW Reclaim the Title of Ultimate Driving Machine?
BMW spent years, decades even, proclaiming itself as the Ultimate Driving Machine. It wasn’t all just talk, though, because the company delivered again and again with vehicles that were the benchmark of luxury and performance. Others tried, but no one could approach BMW’s level of superiority.
Best luxury sedan, best sport sedan, best luxury SUV… all wore the BMW logo and everyone—from consumers, to reviewers, to the automakers themselves—knew it.
But something happened in the last five years or so. BMW fell asleep at the wheel and gave the rest of the industry a chance to catch up. BMW leaders are now in panic mode as they’re realizing they’ve fallen behind and must scramble to keep up with the likes of Tesla, Jaguar, Porsche, Audi, and Mercedes-Benz. Continue reading >>>
Taking a Look at the Most and Least Expensive Cars to Own
There are some things we replace, and other things we repair. I have no qualms replacing a toothbrush every couple months, or buying a new pair of running shoes after a few hundred miles. When it comes to more expensive items, however, my point of view shifts dramatically. Companies like Patagonia have made a strong push against disposable merchandise, offering repair services for their products and encouraging shoppers to fix their gear rather than just throwing it away and buying replacements. It’s a commendable, environmentally friendly decision—and considering the price tags on Patagonia products, one that’s appreciated by shoppers, too.
Of course, when it comes to repairing vs. replacing, nothing trumps the auto industry. Drivers spend hundreds, sometimes thousands of dollars per year keeping their cars on the road and, try as a I might, I just can’t visualize disposable cars showing up anytime soon. YourMechanic.com connects car owners with mechanics and in doing so has amassed an impressive data set breaking down the average cost of ownership by brand and specific model, including the maladies that most commonly afflict each brand.
Mercedes-Benz and Audi Just Outsold BMW
BMW has been the benchmark of luxury car sales in the United States for decades. The BMW 3 Series, 5 Series, X3, and X5 have provided the German automaker with ample opportunity to dominate sales charts here.
Worldwide, though, the other two German companies have been slowly inching closer to the sales king by offering what many consider to be better-designed cars that provide superior value. Mercedes-Benz and Audi are top-tier luxury players and last month both managed to outsell their cross-country rival.
Does this mean we have a new champ in the luxury and performance category? Not yet. But BMW ought to quickly come up with a plan to keep itself on top.