January 14, 2014 |
Fast cars and tough trucks took center stage over two days of model debuts at the Detroit Auto Show. Luxury vehicles also made their presence known, most notably the larger Mercedes C-Class and the Hyundai Genesis, which held the line on a base price below $40,000, despite substantial upgrades. The biggest news came from Ford Motor Co., which pulled the tarp off a new F-series truck. The pickup has been the nation's bestselling vehicle for more than three decades. Ford aims to keep it that way with an all-new aluminum frame, which loses 700 pounds in the interest of fuel economy.
February 12, 2014 |
After years of improving car reliability, automakers have shifted into reverse while attempting to exact better fuel economy and add in-dash technology, J.D. Power & Associates reported in its 2014 U.S. Vehicle Dependability Study. Owners of 3-year-old vehicles reported more problems than in the same study from the prior year, the automotive research firm said Wednesday. It was the first increase in problems reported since 1998. The slip in quality might be the first sign in a trend toward declining reliability in cars, according to the firm, whose research identified transmissions and infotainment systems as key trouble spots.
November 18, 2010 |
Rival Japanese automakers Toyota Motor Co. and Honda Motor Co. unveiled prototypes of upcoming electric cars as alternative-fuel vehicles took center stage Wednesday at the start of the Los Angeles Auto Show. Amid buzz about General Motors Co.'s multibillion-dollar initial public offering, major automakers scrambled to show off their latest electric car offerings to hundreds of reporters gathered for a preview of the annual event at the Los Angeles Convention Center. The show opens to the public on Friday.
September 4, 2011 |
Vortech Engineering Inc. has built a business helping drivers satisfy their need for speed. The Oxnard company manufactures superchargers that force more air into an automotive engine, providing a boost of additional horsepower. The firm has built a loyal following among young gear heads and professional racers who love giving their rides some extra muscle. "It makes a little engine behave like a big engine," said Vortech's founder and president, Jim Middlebrook. To some aficionados, the sound of the supercharger spooling up "is what you hear first.
August 1, 2013 |
Automakers reported strong July sales as consumers replacing aging cars and businesses buying trucks pushed the industry to levels not seen since before the recession. All of the top automakers reported double-digit gains over the same month a year ago. Ford Motor Co. and Chrysler Group said it was their best July since 2006. "If we were ever looking for an indication that the industry is back, this is the month," said Jessica Caldwell, an analyst with auto information company Edmunds.com.
November 29, 2012 |
The flurry of new models unveiled at the Los Angeles Auto Show on Wednesday underscored increasingly fierce industry competition on all fronts, from technology to efficiency to horsepower. The show's opening day featured major debuts including the long-awaited redesign of the Toyota RAV4 sport utility, the new Porsche Cayman and Acura's flagship RLX. Meanwhile, Audi unleashed new diesel versions of four models and Ford offered a Fiesta with a turbo three-cylinder engine small enough to fit in a suitcase.
May 31, 2012 |
A bill that would allow self-driving cars on California's roads may improve traffic safety but it does not do enough to protect privacy, a consumer group said. The bill, SB 1298, sponsored by state Sen. Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima), is awaiting Assembly consideration in June. It establishes guidelines for "autonomous vehicles" to be tested and operated in California. So far, it has flown through the Legislature, passing the Senate unanimously in mid-May. Tech giant Google Inc., Caltech and other organizations have been working to develop such vehicles, which use radar, video cameras and lasers to navigate roads and stay safe in traffic without human assistance.
November 17, 2012 |
Autos writers Jerry Hirsch and David Undercoffler talk about what they are most interested in seeing at the Los Angeles Auto Show next week. The Los Angeles show is second only to the one in Detroit as the most significant auto show in the nation. For full coverage of the auto show go to http://www.latimes.com/business/autos/ RELATED: Audi confirms four new diesel models Jaguar previews ultra-rare XFR-S for L.A. Auto Show Porsche confirms world debut of new Cayman at L.A. Auto Show
December 1, 2011 |
Add automobiles to the watches, video games, cashmere sweaters and the rest on the list of goods selling briskly in the days following Thanksgiving. It seems car buyers caught Black Friday fever this year. Galpin Ford, the nation's largest Ford dealership, sold 140 new vehicles on the Friday after Thanksgiving, a single-day sales record for the San Fernando Valley franchise. "It was surprising for all of us," said Beau Boeckmann, Galpin's vice president. "I don't think we expected that November would be the biggest car month since 'cash for clunkers' two years ago. Our November sales will be 50% above last year.
October 26, 2011 |
European brands are the least reliable vehicles sold in the U.S., according to rankings for the 2011 model year. So if these vehicles all perform so poorly in the reliability ratings, why do people continue to buy them, often paying the price of two cars for one vehicle? "Snob appeal," said David Champion Sr., director of Consumer Reports' Automotive Test Center in East Haddam, Conn. Champion, who drives hundreds of car models annually, concedes that many of these brands also share another quality.