Rick Kranz

RICK KRANZ

Wild ride with Lutz was part of a great journey

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 2, 2012
Friday was my last day after more than 25 years with Automotive News. It has been a fantastic ride -- driving a wide range of outstanding cars and trucks, meeting incredibly dedicated people and having a laugh or two along the way.... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

Chevy hopes to ignite color frenzy with Spark

3:43 pm U.S. ET | March 23, 2012
Will Chevy's new minicar spark a color war? Minicars and subcompacts just might be the next group targeted for a bit of fun.... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

Across a big land, Mini motors on

3:07 pm U.S. ET | March 22, 2012
Ten years ago, plenty of naysayers predicted that the Mini brand would be a flash in the pan, lasting a few years and fading away.... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

Race is on to uncover Chevy's newest nameplate headed to showrooms

4:24 pm U.S. ET | March 16, 2012
There's a lot of buzz surrounding Chevy's mysterious new model. I'm betting it's the vehicle former GM product czar Bob Lutz talked about a few years ago.... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

Chevy's Malibu pricing gambit

4:31 pm U.S. ET | March 8, 2012
If Ricky Ricardo were a Chevy dealer, he might be telling his salespeople: “We have some ‘splainin' to do.” Shoppers lured to a Chevy showroom to see the redesigned 2013 Malibu might suffer sticker shock... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

Maybe the wrong Fiat got here first

4:01 pm U.S. ET | March 7, 2012
American dealers have been struggling to sell that little Italian car, the Fiat 500. Last year a mere 19,769 Fiat 500s were sold, but this spring dealers finally receive the model that just might create a real buzz for the brand: the Fiat 500 Abarth.... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

Look up! It's a car about to land in Gotham!

3:13 pm U.S. ET | March 2, 2012
The real attention grabber for the New York auto show? It may just be a car that's also an airplane, and the manufacturer says it's been approved by the FAA and NHTSA. Essentially, it's a street-legal airplane.... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

How the 2012 Camaro ZL1 got its growl

2:25 pm U.S. ET | March 1, 2012
The 2012 Camaro ZL1 is the most powerful production Camaro ever built and rivals the Chevrolet Corvette in overall performance. Under the Camaro's hood is a supercharged 580-hp V-8 that produces 556 pounds-feet of torque. It's a real head snapper.... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

Why Hyundai should let U.S. take redesigned wagon for a spin

2:34 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 29, 2012
Hyundai's i30 wagon is sold around the globe. Here's it's called the Elantra Touring. This is a rare car in an industry that has gone crossover crazy. The solid, low-priced, very functional compact wagon has received a long list of accolades from journalists worldwide. So the next model should be even better, right?... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

Kia's luxury K9 seems bound, eventually, for U.S.

4:16 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 28, 2012
Kia has taken the wraps off a sporty rear-wheel-drive luxury sedan that will go on sale this spring in Korea. The car will be the biggest, most luxurious car ever produced by the Korean automaker. The car is expected to be aimed at BMW and Mercedes-Benz.... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

Why minivan shoppers are looking beyond roominess, versatility and value

3:58 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 27, 2012
What do minivan owners want? The answer might surprise you. Since the Dodge Caravan and Plymouth Voyager, the industry's first minivans, hit the streets in 1983, the top priorities have changed little.... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

Does V-6 have enough hop for the cops?

12:01 am U.S. ET | Feb. 27, 2012
Six-cylinder vs. Hemi V-8: No contest in a 0-to-60 sprint, right? You might be surprised by the results of a shootout conducted by the Michigan State Police, which has released results of its annual police car test of Chevrolet, Ford and Dodge vehicles Rick Kranz is product editor for Automotive News.... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

With Viper splitting from Dodge, should Corvette have separated from Chevy?

3:16 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 24, 2012
Viper without Dodge is similar to Corvette without Chevrolet, isn't it? Last year Chrysler Group surprised Dodge enthusiasts by announcing that Viper no longer would be marketed under the Dodge brand.... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

Hyundai makes a pitch for livery-limo niche

4:15 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 23, 2012
Can Hyundai make a statement in the livery and limo business? It's trying.... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

Mini's coming Clubvan is a puzzler

2:51 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 22, 2012
The Mini brand has done a successful job of slicing and dicing to create a model line. But tooling up this new model? I don't get it.... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

Ford bets a turbo V-6 will outgun a V-8 among law-enforcement agencies

2:23 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 21, 2012
Six-cylinder vs. Hemi V-8: How fast is fast? You might be surprised by the results of a 0-60 mph shootout. The Michigan State Police this month released results of its annual police car test, which includes Chevrolet, Ford and Dodge vehicles.... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

How Kia wants to tease U.S. buyers with rwd concept car

3:09 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 17, 2012
Kia executives say no decision has been made to sell its first rear-wheel-drive sedan here, but Kia is sure spending a lot of time and effort moving its big, head-turning GT concept across the show circuit.... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

Is new Barracuda Chrysler's next retro muscle car?

2:36 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 16, 2012
The Dodge Challenger made a comeback, so what's next for Chrysler Group in the retro muscle-car wars? How about a new Barracuda, sans the Plymouth name?... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

More plug-in hybrid makers are pushing 'the button'

2:42 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 15, 2012
As automakers introduce plug-in hybrids, each is trying to outdo the others. Rivals battle over combined fuel economy, electric range, acceleration and recharging time. Now it's “the button.”... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

Kia wants to make some noise in motorsports

4:21 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 14, 2012
Win on Sunday, sell on Monday. As part of Kia's push to attract more buyers, the South Korean brand wants to be known for motorsports success and for building credible performance vehicles.... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

GM rediscovers the value of planned obsolescence

2:51 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 13, 2012
GM's current managers view styling changes and product enhancements as a better bet to maintain sales than marketing dated vehicles with huge rebates.... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

Acura: Seinfeld, Leno crashed the Web site

12:01 am U.S. ET | Feb. 13, 2012
Is Acura happy with the response to the Super Bowl commercial featuring Jerry Seinfeld and Jay Leno vying for the upcoming NSX sports car? You betcha. Moments after the Super Bowl ended, Acura's Web site crashed. Mike Accavitti, American Honda's chief marketing officer, says the site was down for about 10 minutes because of a 3,000 percent increase in traffic Rick Kranz is product editor for Automotive News.... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

Hyundai, Kia flex their muscles in Chicago

2:18 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 10, 2012
The big story out of the Chicago Auto Show is Korea. As I look back at the last few days in the Windy City, the clear message is that both Hyundai and Kia are flexing their muscles. Each wants a bigger piece of the U.S. market.... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

At Kia, the toaster car takes on special meaning

3:23 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 9, 2012
Here's a new term for your automotive vocabulary. Have you ever seen a “toaster car?”... Read More »

 

RICK KRANZ

Acura says Seinfeld/Leno commercial did the job

12:05 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 8, 2012
Is Acura happy with the response to the Super Bowl commercial featuring Jerry Seinfeld and Jay Leno vying for the upcoming NSX sports car? You betcha. Moments after the Super Bowl ended, Acura's Web site crashed.... Read More »

 

Special Report
No. 1 store empowers, retains employees

No. 1 store empowers, retains employees

Texas dealer Greg May encourages his staffers to provide input and solve problems on their own. Mon., October 20
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