BLOG: Mike Colias

Caddy CT6's lightweight body = big car, small engine

Posted 12:30 pm U.S. ET, Jan. 26
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The Cadillac CT6 at the Shanghai auto show in April 2015. (BLOOMBERG)
RAMONA, Calif. -- Of the three engine choices available on the Cadillac CT6 sedan, it was the smallest that seemed to generate the most buzz during a media drive here last week. The 2.0-liter, four-cylinder turbo kicks out 265 hp, shy of the 272 hp that the same displacement engine produces in the compact Cadillac ATS. But the relative featherweight construction of the CT ...
     Continue reading "Caddy CT6's lightweight body = big car, small engine" » Jan 26, 2016 12:30 pm U.S. ET
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Why the Buick Avista is a long shot for production

Posted 3:00 pm U.S. ET, Jan. 11
DETROIT -- For the second straight Detroit auto show, Buick pulled a surprise -- this year, it's the Avista 2+2 coupe concept -- that has put it on many people’s most buzzworthy lists. But with this latest tease -- last year’s was the svelte Avenir sedan concept -- the questions are growing louder about whether Buick is serious about adding any ...
     Continue reading "Why the Buick Avista is a long shot for production" » Jan 11, 2016 3:00 pm U.S. ET
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5 factors behind GM's Lyft deal

Posted 7:00 pm U.S. ET, Jan. 4
GM executives lately have been telling anyone who’ll listen that they’re ready to lead in a world of autonomous driving, ride sharing and other personal-mobility innovations that threaten to upend the industry’s status quo. They backed that talk on Monday with a $500 million investment in ride-hailing service Lyft -- the No. 2 rival to Uber -- to develop ...
     Continue reading "5 factors behind GM's Lyft deal" » Jan 4, 2016 7:00 pm U.S. ET
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Chevrolet aims for tech 'punch' with redesigned Malibu

Posted 11:45 am U.S. ET, Dec. 1
PALO ALTO, Calif. -- As the guy in charge of marketing Chevrolet cars, Steve Majoros knows well how tough it’s gotten to offer something new enough and different enough to get buyers’ attention. Especially in the cutthroat midsize car segment. Especially when the car you’re peddling, the Malibu, is a distant also-ran in the category, one that’s be ...
     Continue reading "Chevrolet aims for tech 'punch' with redesigned Malibu" » Dec 1, 2015 11:45 am U.S. ET
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Pressure on XT5 to deliver amid Caddy's lineup quagmire

Posted 11:07 am U.S. ET, Nov. 20
LOS ANGELES -- To understand why Cadillac's U.S. sales are struggling despite its vastly improved lineup, consider this: It’s about to launch its third sedan into essentially the same segment, one that happens to be the weakest in all of luxury. OK, technically they’re not all in the same segment -- the CT6 that goes on sale early next year and the three-year- ...
     Continue reading "Pressure on XT5 to deliver amid Caddy's lineup quagmire" » Nov 20, 2015 11:07 am U.S. ET
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GM's product plans create bargaining chips for UAW talks

Posted 8:52 am U.S. ET, Oct. 24
Product commitments are valuable bargaining chips in UAW contract talks. And General Motors has a lot of them -- most imprinted with a Cadillac badge. Cadillac has promised a product onslaught of eight new models by 2020. As GM and the UAW push toward an agreement that could come as early as this coming week, it’s a good bet that negotiators are discussing which of ...
     Continue reading "GM's product plans create bargaining chips for UAW talks" » Oct 24, 2015 8:52 am U.S. ET
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How VW's 'clean diesel' made a liar out of me

Posted 2:14 pm U.S. ET, Sept. 21
DETROIT -- Volkswagen AG has made a liar out of me. For months, I’ve been telling people about how much I like the 2015 Golf SportWagen TDI that I bought in May. I held out for a year for the arrival of this redesign, which has a sleeker silhouette, more interior space and a new, 2.0-liter, turbocharged “Clean Diesel” engine. I’ve boasted about ho ...
     Continue reading "How VW's 'clean diesel' made a liar out of me" » Sep 21, 2015 2:14 pm U.S. ET
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Opel pins compact car comeback on Astra's posh comforts

Posted 12:01 am U.S. ET, Sept. 18
BRATISLAVA, Slovakia -- Mainstream brands have been nuzzling closer to their luxury counterparts in recent years, adding everything from heated steering wheels to high-end sound systems and high-tech safety packages. But General Motors' Opel brand has reached a new level of luxury incursion with its redesigned Astra, a cousin of the Chevy Cruze. Available features on the ...
     Continue reading "Opel pins compact car comeback on Astra's posh comforts" » Sep 18, 2015 12:01 am U.S. ET
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Opel Astra's 'floating' roofline likely to appear on future Buicks

Posted 12:01 am U.S. ET, Sept. 17
One of the most distinctive design elements of the redesigned Opel Astra unveiled at this year's Frankfurt auto show is its “floating” roofline, an element likely to appear on future Opels -- and by extension, future Buicks. Opel made the new Astra compact a bit smaller than its predecessor, but managed to increase interior space. That’s good for weight ...
     Continue reading "Opel Astra's 'floating' roofline likely to appear on future Buicks " » Sep 17, 2015 12:01 am U.S. ET
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Future Buicks could get Opel's 'floating' roofline

Posted 6:14 am U.S. ET, Sept. 16
FRANKFURT -- One of the most distinctive design elements of the redesigned Opel Astra unveiled at the motor show here is its “floating” roofline, an element likely to appear on future Opels -- and by extension, future Buicks. Opel made the 2016 Astra compact a bit smaller than its predecessor, but managed to increase interior space. That’s good for weigh ...
     Continue reading "Future Buicks could get Opel's 'floating' roofline" » Sep 16, 2015 6:14 am U.S. ET
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Why Barra's timing is good for Frankfurt appearance

Posted 2:34 pm U.S. ET, Sept. 11
Mary Barra will make her first public appearance at a European auto show as GM’s CEO next week in Frankfurt. Her timing is pretty good. GM’s Opel division had little to feel good about the last time the automotive world descended on its home country for the sprawling Frankfurt motor show, in September 2013. Opel had lost market share for 14 straight years. GM ...
     Continue reading "Why Barra's timing is good for Frankfurt appearance" » Sep 11, 2015 2:34 pm U.S. ET
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CTS-V sticker reflects shift in Cadillac pricing

Posted 11:00 am U.S. ET, Aug. 11
If you squint hard at the label on the Cadillac CTS-V high-performance sedan that hits showrooms soon, you will see a subtle but telling shift in Cadillac’s pricing strategy. The sticker starts at $83,995, including shipping. That’s about $11,000 below BMW’s M5 and about $9,500 less than the Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG. In recent years, Cadillac has tried to ...
     Continue reading "CTS-V sticker reflects shift in Cadillac pricing" » Aug 11, 2015 11:00 am U.S. ET
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Cadillac's product onslaught: Hurry up and wait

Posted 12:15 pm U.S. ET, July 21
We have been told to expect big things for Cadillac’s vehicle portfolio -- eight all-new models by 2020. But a glance at its product-planning timeline shows that dealers and consumers will be waiting quite a while for much of that fresh sheet metal. This year is a fun one productwise for Cadillac, with the arrival of three new, screamin’-fast V-series cars, a ...
     Continue reading "Cadillac's product onslaught: Hurry up and wait" » Jul 21, 2015 12:15 pm U.S. ET
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Colorado, Canyon target 'best' marketing claim

Posted 3:00 pm U.S. ET, June 26
DETROIT -- Soon, Chevrolet and GMC will gain a coveted marketing claim: Best fuel economy of any pickup. General Motors invited reporters this week to drive a Chevy Colorado and a GMC Canyon equipped with 2.8-liter, four-cylinder Duramax diesel engines. The trucks go on sale this fall. The GM engineers on hand were confident that the trucks' highway fuel-economy rating w ...
     Continue reading "Colorado, Canyon target 'best' marketing claim" » Jun 26, 2015 3:00 pm U.S. ET
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Hooray for GM's 500 millionth vehicle?

Posted 10:39 am U.S. ET, May 4
DETROIT -- General Motors CEO Mary Barra and other top brass are in Kansas City today to mark the company's 500th million vehicle. It must be hard for GM to decide when to celebrate its considerable corporate heritage, and when to pretend that it doesn't exist pre-2009. A GM press release ticks off an impressive list of innovations that have rolled off GM assembly lines ...
     Continue reading "Hooray for GM's 500 millionth vehicle?" » May 4, 2015 10:39 am U.S. ET
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Why it could be the Volt's time to shine in China

Posted 7:17 am U.S. ET, April 20
SHANGHAI -- Since the Chevrolet Volt hit U.S. showrooms in late 2010, it's been dogged by a central question: How can General Motors drive down the plug-in hybrid's cost enough to make it affordable to more people, and eventually turn a profit? I think I know at least part of the answer: Sell a boatload of them in a Chinese market that's fast warming to EVs. GM has sold ...
     Continue reading "Why it could be the Volt's time to shine in China" » Apr 20, 2015 7:17 am U.S. ET
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Barra's management style signaled in Wilson negotiations

Posted 4:03 pm U.S. ET, March 9
General Motors' swift, tidy resolution of Harry Wilson's advance on its board and balance sheet has GM CEO Mary Barra's fingerprints all over it. By that, I mean it was handled efficiently and inclusively, without raising the temperature or decibel level in the room, by all accounts. And it left the opposing side with nothing but nice things to say. "She ran an effective ...
     Continue reading "Barra's management style signaled in Wilson negotiations" » Mar 9, 2015 4:03 pm U.S. ET
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How much damage can GM's financial 'fortress' sustain?

Posted 1:54 pm U.S. ET, Feb. 10
Editor's note: This blog was updated to clarify details on GM Financial and on Cadillac spending. DETROIT -- Marauders are storming General Motors’ “fortress balance sheet.” Or at least, they’re knocking loudly on the door. Since GM’s 2009 bankruptcy, executives have used that fortress analogy to describe a fiscal philosophy marked by a comf ...
     Continue reading "How much damage can GM's financial 'fortress' sustain?" » Feb 10, 2015 1:54 pm U.S. ET
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The magic number for Colorado and Canyon sales

Posted 4:14 pm U.S. ET, Feb. 5
General Motors sold 8,147 Chevy Colorado and GMC Canyon midsize pickups last month. Is that good or bad? It depends whom you ask. Jalopnik leans toward bad, I guess, with this headline from Tuesday: "Is The 2015 Chevy Colorado In Danger Of Becoming A Failed Experiment?" The writer, who counts himself a Colorado fan, laments that in January, just its fifth month on the ma ...
     Continue reading "The magic number for Colorado and Canyon sales" » Feb 5, 2015 4:14 pm U.S. ET
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