Headlines for Friday, March 8, 2013

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Regulators checking if Subaru remote starter defect affects other automakers

5:25 pm U.S. ET | March 8, 2013
Federal safety investigators are looking into a Subaru recall to determine if a defect in the remote engine starter could affect other automakers.

VIDEO: AutoNews Now: Volvo gives bikers a brake

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 8, 2013
Safety technology helps drivers avoid collisions; GM invests in Canada; Daimler, VW reject refrigerant; Lapham: To be Tesla.

Volkswagen rules out refrigerant made by Honeywell, DuPont

March 8, 2013 17:00 CET
Volkswagen has joined Daimler in deciding not to use a new air-conditioning refrigerant developed by Honeywell and DuPont in its cars.

Carmakers seek new ways to cut CO2 emissions as EV optimism wanes

March 8, 2013 17:06 CET
Automakers are rethinking fuel-saving technologies for passenger cars as hopes dampen that electric vehicles will play a big role in cutting CO2 emissions.

Tesla's Musk thanks Minn. legislators for stalling franchise law rewrite

4:09 pm U.S. ET | March 8, 2013
Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk is thanking Minnesota lawmakers who blocked legislation that would prevent the electric vehicle maker from opening stores in that state. But the legislative tussle is far from over.

GM investing $250 million in CAMI plant's body shop

1:03 pm U.S. ET | March 8, 2013
General Motors is investing $250 million in an Ontario assembly plant to support future vehicle production.

Toyota defends title as world's most valuable car brand, report says

2:37 pm U.S. ET | March 8, 2013
Toyota regained considerable value to once again be the world's most valuable automotive brand at $26 billion, up 6 percent from last year, according to marketing consultancy Brand Finance.

Ally says Federal Reserve's stress test was 'fundamentally flawed'

9:39 am U.S. ET | March 8, 2013
Ally Financial, the auto lender majority-owned by the federal government, disputed results of the Federal Reserve's stress tests, calling the analysis "fundamentally flawed."

DOUGLAS A. BOLDUC

VW marries massages, movies & maintenance

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 8, 2013
For most people in the Western world, going to the dealership is like going to the dentist. The visit is considered a success as long as it is quick and painless. At Volkswagen dealerships in China the expectations are higher -- and the perks are much better.

Plastic Omnium to close bumper plant in Belgium

March 8, 2013 14:07 CET
French supplier Plastic Omnium said it plans to close its Belgian bumper manufacturing plant this summer in response to shrinking car sales in Europe.

Volkswagen rules out refrigerant made by Honeywell, DuPont

11:00 am U.S. ET | March 8, 2013
Volkswagen has joined German compatriot Daimler in deciding not to use a new air-conditioning refrigerant developed by U.S. firms Honeywell and DuPont in its cars.

2013 GENEVA AUTO SHOW

McLaren vs. Ferrari Formula One rivalry spills onto the road

March 8, 2013 06:01 CET
The all-consuming rivalry McLaren and Ferrari display on the F1 racetrack was transferred to the Geneva auto show as the two carmakers unveiled competing million-euro hybrid hypercars.

PSA signs Kazakhstan vehicle-assembly deal

March 8, 2013 14:47 CET
PSA says a deal with the Russian company Agromash Holding to assemble cars in Kazakhstan could generate more than 300 jobs in France.

Western Europe car sales decline 10.6% in February

March 8, 2013 09:43 CET
New-car registrations in western Europe fell 10.6 percent to 771,695 in February, market forecaster LMC Automotive said.

PSA wants GM to share development of compressed-gas hybrids

March 8, 2013 06:01 CET
PSA/Peugeot-Citroen plans to talk to other carmakers including alliance partner General Motors about sharing development of low-cost compressed-gas hybrids.

Honda needs more time to turn around Europe business

March 8, 2013 14:15 CET
Honda will need more time to turn around its European business. “We want to be profitable within three years, by 2016,” Honda Europe President Manabu Nishimae said. Last year, Nishimae said Honda would be profitable in Europe starting in its 2013-2014 business year.

BMW brand regained luxury sales lead from Audi in February

March 8, 2013 13:44 CET
BMW regained the luxury lead from Audi after its vehicle sales rose 7 percent to 114,908 last month as increased demand in China, the UK and Russia offset weakness in Germany and other parts of Europe.

VIDEO: First Shift: Turning up the CNG

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 8, 2013
GM CEO: Natural gas 'huge opportunity,' Chrysler delivers CNG Rams to Oklahoma; Infiniti plans hybrid JX; Equus refresh.

2013 NEW YORK AUTO SHOW

Infiniti will offer JX hybrid in 2014

8:00 am U.S. ET | March 8, 2013
Infiniti will offer a hybrid version of its seven-passenger JX crossover in 2014, moving the luxury brand deeper into an alternative-powerplant strategy. The addition will be called the QX60 Hybrid, in accordance with this year's planned portfolio-wide change in product names.

Continental forecasts first-quarter sales drop on falling auto demand

March 8, 2013 06:01 CET
Continental forecasts first-quarter sales will decline as much as 3 percent as demand for autos in its home market plunges. Revenue in the quarter will drop 1 percent to 3 percent, the company says.

PSA will offer retail banking to raise funds for dealers, auto ops

March 8, 2013 06:01 CET
PSA/Peugeot-Citroen will offer savings accounts through its financing arm to raise funding for dealerships and other automotive operations. PSA is following Renault in setting up a retail banking arm.

Q&A

BMW r&d boss bets on technology push to stay No. 1

March 8, 2013 06:01 CET
BMW faces challenges to hold off rivals Audi and Mercedes to remain the world's largest premium automaker.

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