Automotive News Automaker News Feed News, blogs and commentary from the leader in North American automotive news en-us Wed, 28 Jan 2015 06:00:00 EST Fiat Chrysler's $4.1 billion operating profit in 2014 fueled by N.A. Wed, 28 Jan 2015 08:51:14 EST Fiat Chrysler Automobiles met its full-year guidance as strong results from North America and improving operations in Europe managed to offset persistent weakness in Latin America. Renault expects to make 3,000 Alpine cars a year Wed, 28 Jan 2015 06:36:35 EST A Renault executive today revealed the output expectations for the automaker's Alpine-badged sports car. Marchionne has FCA on fast track to profit in Europe Wed, 28 Jan 2015 10:28:33 EST Fiat Chrysler Automobiles will be profitable in Europe a year earlier than expected, CEO Sergio Marchionne said today. Japanese supplier Sanden agrees to $3.2 million fine in U.S. price-fixing case Wed, 28 Jan 2015 06:33:22 EST Japanese supplier Sanden has agreed to pay a US fine of more than $3 million and becomes the latest company tied to a wide-ranging auto supplier price-fixing prosecution for its brief role in setting the prices of air conditioning compressors for... Ford recalls 221,000 vehicles for door handle, seat belt problems Wed, 28 Jan 2015 09:57:55 EST Ford said it is recalling about 221,000 cars and vans for door handle and seat belt problems. Ford said it is not aware of any crashes or injuries related to the two recalls. Nissan recalls 768,000 crossovers and SUVs for separate problems Wed, 28 Jan 2015 09:40:43 EST Nissan is recalling about 768,000 vehicles, including its popular Rogue crossover and Pathfinder SUV, for separate problems, the company and federal regulators said today. Cost-cutting VW baffles experts with Phaeton plans Wed, 28 Jan 2015 04:05:20 EST With VW having embarked on a big cost-cutting drive, industry experts are baffled why the "people's car" maker plans to spend millions of euros upgrading the money-losing Phaeton premium sedan. Analysts say the costly car should be axed. Auto industry drives comeback in aluminum prices Wed, 28 Jan 2015 06:44:22 EST At a time when other commodities are slumping, aluminum is making a comeback as automakers under pressure to build more fuel-efficient cars increase their use of the lightweight metal. Automakers' push for fuel-efficiency boosts aluminum Wed, 28 Jan 2015 05:02:03 EST Automakers, under pressure to build more fuel-efficient cars, are driving demand for aluminum, even at a time when other commodities are slumping. Zetsche done taking beating for Daimler double duty Wed, 28 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST Dieter Zetsche has been the whipping boy of the German premium auto industry for years, but that should soon change. Auto sales forecast calls for a hot January Tue, 27 Jan 2015 16:00:00 EST Forecasters say U.S. auto sales have begun 2015 much stronger than 2014, when a deep freeze kept shoppers away from many dealerships in much of the country. Can Dodge rebuild Pontiac excitement? Tue, 27 Jan 2015 11:00:00 EST General Motors has no plans to revive Pontiac, Hummer and Saturn, CEO Mary Barra says. So where do longtime Pontiac and Hummer buyers go if they are in the market? Mercedes plans to move R-class production to AM General in Indiana Tue, 27 Jan 2015 10:18:49 EST Mercedes-Benz plans to shift production of the R-class crossover from its Alabama plant to contract manufacturer AM General in Indiana this summer. The German automaker said it needed to free up space in its assembly operations near Tuscaloosa, Ala. Kia returns to Super Bowl for 6th consecutive year Tue, 27 Jan 2015 06:26:34 EST Kia's 2015 Super Bowl commercial will star Pierce Brosnan parodying his role as James Bond. TI Automotive to be acquired by Bain for $2.4 billion, report says Tue, 27 Jan 2015 08:36:07 EST Global fuel systems supplier TI Automotive, after months of wrangling and speculation, said today it has agreed to be acquired by private equity firm Bain Capital LLC. The deal is valued at $2.4 billion, sources told Bloomberg. Aston Martin gets cash backing to overhaul lineup Tue, 27 Jan 2015 07:06:39 EST Aston Martin's main financial backer has pledged to provide cash for a refreshed model lineup that the supercar maker plans to reveal at the Geneva auto show in March. Germany plans driverless-car pilot project on autobahn Tue, 27 Jan 2015 04:36:58 EST Germany plans a driverless-car pilot project on a portion of the A9 autobahn between Munich and Berlin. The project would be one of the first to equip a stretch of public highway specifically for testing autonomous vehicles. Renault poised for big boost from new SUV Tue, 27 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST Renault's new Kadjar will become a top-seller in Europe's key compact SUV segment, according to a forecast. The French automaker needs a boost after its Koleos flopped in a fast-growing niche dominated by alliance partner Nissan's Qashqai. Nissan steps back from cutting-edge offerings Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST Nissan and its luxury Infiniti sibling have mellowed in their message of cutting-edge future products as 2015 begins. Missing from talking points this month at the Detroit auto show was any discussion of recent racy concepts. Hyundai's new infotainment strategy: Leveraging smartphone apps Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST Over the next few years, Hyundai plans to remove CD players from mainstream cars such as the Elantra and Sonata as it rolls out an infotainment system called Display Audio that's built around Apple's CarPlay and Google's Android Auto interfaces. Jaguar expects record rewards from huge investments in products and plants Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST Jaguar appears poised to have a record 2015 and to keep increasing global sales to well more than 200,000 this decade as a massive investment in products, plants and underpinnings starts to pay dividends, executives and analysts say. Renegade comes through, on-road and off Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST When Jeep introduced the Compass -- and later, its platform mate, the Patriot -- with front-wheel drive and continuously variable transmissions, it was derided by the faithful as an affront to the brand's off-road heritage. Toyota to move to merit-based pay for Japan factory workers, report says Mon, 26 Jan 2015 20:40:20 EST Toyota will change the way it pays factory workers, focusing on their performance rather than their seniority, the Nikkei reported on Monday. Mercedes debuts Super Bowl ad on 'Ellen' show Mon, 26 Jan 2015 15:49:12 EST Mercedes-Benz premiered its Super Bowl ad for the AMG GT sports car -- an edgy take on the fabled tortoise vs. hare race -- on 'The Ellen DeGeneres Show' Dana sells Venezuelan unit amid exchange rate trouble Mon, 26 Jan 2015 16:05:30 EST As Venezuela's automotive industry continues to falter amid exchange rate problems, powertrain supplier Dana Holding today said that it has sold its Venezuelan unit, CA Danaven. GM's confirmed ignition deaths hit 50 as claims deadline nears Mon, 26 Jan 2015 13:14:55 EST Confirmed deaths tied to General Motors' defective ignition switches stand at 50, four times GM's estimate through much of 2014, as a deadline nears Saturday for sending in claims. BMW Super Bowl ad compares i3 with early Internet Mon, 26 Jan 2015 10:20:45 EST In BMW's Super Bowl spot, the brand is casting its electric i3 hatchback as an ahead-of-its-time concoction that needs some explaining -- just like the Internet back in 1994. Suppliers dream up future innovations. Will automakers bite? Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST Suppliers try to look over the horizon and craft new features and equipment for autos. Porsche works to deliver more Macans to U.S. dealerships Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST Porsche is working to increase supplies of the new Macan midsize crossover to US dealers in 2015. Wait times for Macan buyers have been six months or more since it went on sale last May. Be bold, spend big -- and don't go overboard Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST Dealers, automakers and suppliers enter the new year on an investment kick. Audi readies Q1 SUV after Fiat rebuff over name Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST Audi is reluctantly using the Q1 badge for its new compact SUV after failing to gain permission from Fiat Chrysler to call it the Q2, a name held by Alfa Romeo. Audi to recall 80,000 vehicles; China hit hardest Mon, 26 Jan 2015 06:23:53 EST Audi says it will recall 80,000 vehicles globally due to fuel-injection issues, adding that about 35,000 are from China. VW reaches pact with China dealers Mon, 26 Jan 2015 05:24:22 EST VW says it has reached an agreement with its dealers in China and pledged to continue setting reasonable sales targets to ensure a financially sound distribution network as demand in the world's biggest auto market slows. How VW veered off target Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST Competition has heated up, the Jetta and Passat have cooled off, and with back-to-back yearly declines, VW has missed out on a key boom period in US auto sales -- a sore spot with dealers who made big bets on sustained sales growth. Visteon zeros in on 1 segment: The connected car Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST With Visteon Corp.'s announcement last month that it would sell its division that produces heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems, the supplier is concentrating on one product segment: cockpit information systems. Volvo's revival plan 'starts now' Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST After its U.S. market share fell to the lowest level since 1978, Volvo has put its global product strategy chief in charge of North America and significantly boosted its marketing budget in preparation for an upcoming blitz of new vehicles. Game on with steel, says aluminum supplier Novelis Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST Phil Martens, CEO of aluminum giant Novelis, knows both sides of the auto metals business. With TRW, ZF can offer advanced driverless tech Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST ZF Friedrichshafen AG's acquisition of TRW Automotive will make it a key player in collision avoidance and driverless cars. For Infiniti Q50, 'we need to give it some love' in ads Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST Infiniti's new global ad agency will help "re-stimulate" the brand's volume leader, the Q50 sedan, this spring, nearly two years after its U.S. launch. Super Bowl advertisers hype their messages early and often Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST Building an elaborate pregame hype machine reflects a growing trend among Super Bowl advertisers: To get the most bang for the buck from the biggest advertising event of the year, use social media early and often -- emphasis on "early." 2014 N.A. output up 6% Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST North American car and truck production rose 6 percent to 17,568,729 vehicles in 2014, according to preliminary estimates. It is the third-largest year ever, surpassed only by 17,598,866 in 2000 and 17,582,611 in 1999. Exec: Enterprise holds steady on program cars Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST Unlike its two closest competitors, Hertz Corp. and Avis Budget Group Inc. Beyond SUVs, VW weighs van, Golf pocket rocket for U.S. Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST VW development chief Hans-Jakob Neusser said VW is close to deciding whether to produce the Golf R400 concept shown at the Beijing auto show in April. The pocket rocket is capable of 395 hp and can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in under four seconds. Opel's next-gen Adam could also be a Buick Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST Buick's top U.S. executive wants to bolster the brand's U.S. lineup with a rebadged Opel Adam, a sporty three-door minicar that competes with the Fiat 500 and BMW's Mini brand in Europe. But the prospect is likely several years off. Land Rover has high conquest goals for new Discovery Sport Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST With a more mainstream design, optional seven-seat configuration and improved technology, the new Discovery Sport compact SUV is expected to draw mostly new buyers to Land Rover, executives say. Stadler: Audi to build range-topping Q8 SUV Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST Audi will launch a flagship SUV called the Q8 before the end of the decade, CEO Rupert Stadler said. The SUV will be aimed at markets such as the U.S., China and the Middle East. With Titan, Nissan aims for 'white space' below biggest pickups Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST Nissan has a new strategy for scratching out a piece of Detroit's full-size pickup market: It will stop chasing cowboys. And it will instead think about Roman gladiators, Spartacus, NFL football players, and maybe even flesh-eating zombies. Ford again wins customer-loyalty title Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST Ford Motor Co. retained the crown in the 2014 model year for most-loyal customers, while Maserati won top honors for conquests, according to the IHS Automotive Loyalty Awards. GM's got no beef with suppliers' dough Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST If Fiat Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne is looking for an ally to wring price concessions from suppliers, he won't find one in Steve Kiefer, General Motors' new head of purchasing. Auto writers go ga-ga for the Ford GT Mon, 26 Jan 2015 00:01:00 EST Hardly ever (let's back up, never) can we recall a car getting such a warm auto show welcome as the Ford GT, the surprise stunner at the 2015 Detroit extravaganza. Auto writers were left gasping for air. %]