I've put together a report for a family meeting to choose our next car. We want a compact SUV that can be flat towed behind our Itasca Navion motorhome. When various other filters are applied we ended up with four choices: Chevrolet Equinox, GMC Terrain, Jeep Cherokee, and Jeep Wrangler. This report provides an overview of the pros and cons of the various choices.
One refrain you hear frequently from insurance companies, police, and the media is that 'speed …Read more
Here's the quote in full.
"I've spent eight years in traffic services, and I was a crash reconstructionist for five years before that," Michigan State Police Lieutenant Gary Megge told the News. "So I've seen my share of fatal wrecks, and I can tell you: Deaths are not caused by speeding. They're caused by drinking, drugs and inattentiveness. The old adage that speed kills just isn't realistic. The safest speed is the speed that is correct for that roadway at a given time. A lot of speed limits are set artificially low."
Why doesn't Lincoln have a performance division? An AMG or M version of their cars would help establish Lincoln as a real luxury brand rather than just a source of high priced rebadged versions of Ford cars.
I'm thinking an MKS with the supercharged 5.8 liter V8 from the Shelby Mustang, for example. Or an MKZ with a twin-turbocharged version of Ford's 5.0 liter V8.
Couple that with an infotainment system based on iOS instead of Microsoft and I'd buy that.
Ford Motor Company is really working to make Lincoln something more than just a line of badge-engineered Ford models. While there are hopefully some thrilling luxury sedans and crossovers in the works behind the scenes at Lincoln, apparently there are also some indications that a Mustang-based Lincoln sports luxury coupe might be in development.
If that’s true, and that is a big if right now, it could be an incredibly smart move on Lincoln’s part. Right now, Lincoln needs something that will turn heads. There just isn’t much pizazz with the likes of the MKZ, and Lincoln’s model lineup is pretty sparse. If Ford ever wants the luxury brand to have even a fighting chance against the likes of Cadillac, or better yet Mercedes and BMW, more models are a must. As it stands right now, Lincoln can compete with Acura for the award of “Most Pathetic Luxury-Like Model Lineup.”
Lately, I've become a big fan of the new(-ish) 4 door "gran coupes": The Mercedes CLS, the Porsche Panamera, the BMW 4- and 6-series gran coupes, and, especially, the Audi A7, which is my current heart throb.
The new Mustang sounds like a potentially great car, but like the new Corvette Stingray, it seems a bit too boy-racer/mid-life crisis for a guy of my age (and, candidly, physique). In contrast, the 4-door gran coupes are sexy, sporty, and sophisticated, without screaming I've got hair plugs and am looking for a yoga instructor half my age.
Everyone can share stories about how they were talked down to by a salesperson in the showroom, treated rudely or like they were ignorant, bullied by salespeople and a slow selling process, overcharged compared to competitors for service, forced into unwanted service purchases under threat of losing warranty coverage – and a slew of other objectionable interactions. Most Americans think the act of negotiating the purchase of a new car is loathsome – and far worse than the proverbial trip to a dentist. It’s no wonder auto salespeople regularly top the list of least trusted occupations! ...
The trends all support Americans wanting to buy directly from manufacturers. At the very least this would force dealers to justify their existence, and profits, if they want to stay in business. But, better yet, it would create greater competition – as happened in the case of Apple’s re-emergence leading to its impact on personal technology for entertainment and productivity.
How is it that progressives, who otherwise favor all sorts of forms of economic regulation, occupational licensing schemes, and unnecessary barriers to entry, find this single cartel–taxi cabs–is unnecessary.
Well, many progressives have suddenly found another cartel they can’t stand. New Jersey, as well as Texas, and Arizona, only permit the sale of cars through in-state car dealerships. This renders the Tesla sales model–selling direct to consumers–illegal in many states.
The decision by workers at the Volkswagen plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee to reject the United Auto Workers is the best news so far this year for the American economy. Even with Volkswagen management on its side, the union that combined with CEOs to nearly ruin U.S. car makers couldn't persuade a majority voting in a secret ballot to let it become their agent to bargain with the foreign-owned company.
This wasn't merely one more failed union organizing attempt. The UAW and its chief Bob King spent years working toward this vote as part of its strategy to organize plants in the American South, and all the stars were aligned in its favor. …
The UAW may be able to negotiate a near-term increase in pay and job security for current workers. But the price—in addition to the steep coerced dues—is usually a less competitive company that means less security and fewer jobs in the long run. The best proof is the UAW itself: It has lost 75% of its members in 35 years as its demands and work rules made their employers less competitive. …
Don't believe those who say this means the end of the UAW. It has too many friends in high political places, as the 2009 auto bailouts proved. Federal law is also stacked in favor of unions, and President Obama's NLRB is routinely stretching and breaking the law to make it even more so.
But the fact that unions must rely on brute government force shows how out of touch they are with modern economic reality.
When I was a kid I vacillated between two automotive loves: The Porsche 911 and the Jaguar E Type. I've owned one of the former and loved it. I've never owned one of the latter, mostly because they were hopelessly unreliable when new. But I'm increasingly thinking the new F Type might make a decent replacement:
Or maybe I'll just go back to the 911.
In any case, however, one question bugs me: Why is Mark Strong driving a LHD car in what is supposed to be England?
Hillary Clinton hasn't gotten behind the wheel in a long, long time.
The former first lady and potential 2016 Democratic presidential candidate, who has had drivers for much of her three decades in public life, said Monday that she hasn't driven a car since 1996. Clinton made the confession at the National Automobile Dealers Association meeting in New Orleans.
Remember that the next time she rails about the privileges of the 1%. (BTW, when was the last time Elizabeth Warren drove herself?)
U.S. automaker Chrysler, which was bailed out by taxpayers at a loss of $1.3 billion, will become fully owned by Italy’s Fiat.
The agreement comes more than 4-1/2 years after the Obama administration brought Fiat in to keep Chrysler in business as part of a packaged bankruptcy proceeding.
Fiat said it has agreed to pay $3.65 billion for the 41.46% of Chrysler it doesn’t already own from the UAW’s medical benefits trust for retirees.
Fiat shares gained nearly 13% in Milan early Thursday to trade at €6.70, their highest level since July 2011.
It's interesting that Fiat stock went up, since--at least in the USA--an acquirer's stock often drops on news of an impending acquisition. OTOH, as the LA Times reminds us:
The federal government led the effort to remake Chrysler as part of a $12.5-billion bailout that, along with the $51-billion rescue of General Motors Co., was designed to save the U.S. auto industry during the depths of the recession.
Fiat purchased the government's remaining stake in Chrysler in 2011, ending the bailout with a taxpayer loss of $1.3 billion.
So maybe Obama should be the one reimbursing US taxpayers. I'd be happy to settle for a cut of the money he'll inevitably make writing his memoirs and giving speeches.