Automotive News Europe News Feed News, blogs and commentary from the leader in European automotive news en-us Sun, 19 Apr 2015 06:00:00 EST Volkswagen mulls budget SUVs, minivans for China Sun, 19 Apr 2015 05:13:31 ESTVolkswagen is exploring the possibility of developing budget SUVs and minivans in China to keep up with shifts in the market, its China chief executive, Jochem Heizmann, said. VW is considering a product family of low cost models, he said. Piech's grip on VW weakened by row with CEOSun, 19 Apr 2015 12:12:43 ESTVolkswagen Chairman Ferdinand Piech's iron grip on the German carmaker has been severely weakened following a dramatic confrontation with senior board members last week that nearly resulted in a push to oust him, sources told Reuters. PSA and Dongfeng will develop platform for compact and subcompact carsSun, 19 Apr 2015 05:45:36 ESTPSA/Peugeot-Citroen and China's Dongfeng will jointly develop a platform for small cars for the Peugeot, Citroen, DS and Dongfeng brands. VW board members came close to demanding Piech's resignation, paper saysSat, 18 Apr 2015 16:33:39 ESTSenior members of Volkswagen's supervisory board were prepared to demand Chairman Ferdinand Piech's resignation had he not agreed to a statement backing CEO Martin Winterkorn, a German newspaper reported. Audi aims Q7, A6L plug-in hybrids at Chinese buyersSat, 18 Apr 2015 00:01:00 ESTAudi will aim plug-in hybrid versions of the Q7 SUV and long-wheelbase A6 at Chinese customers as the company seeks to maintain its sales lead over rivals BMW and Mercedes in the world's largest vehicle market. BMW says new 7 series can park itself Fri, 17 Apr 2015 18:15:00 ESTBMW says the 7-series flagship sedan will be the world's first series-production car that can be parked without anyone at the wheel. Volkswagen CEO Winterkorn to stay in defeat for PiechFri, 17 Apr 2015 05:59:32 ESTVolkswagen Group CEO Martin Winterkorn won the "full support" of the automaker's top-level committee to continue serving as chief executive in a defeat for Ferdinand Piech, the automaker's powerful chairman and patriarch of its founding family. Lotus plans to build cars in ChinaFri, 17 Apr 2015 10:24:14 ESTLotus plans to build cars and engines in China in a joint venture, DRB-Hicom, the UK sports car maker's Malaysian parent company, said. The venture will involve an investment of $1.6 billion over 15 years. Oman will use Italian expertise to help build auto industryFri, 17 Apr 2015 00:01:00 ESTThe Oman government has bought into an Italian supplier as part of its goal to develop car production in the oil-rich Middle Eastern state. VW Group sales rise 2% on Europe, China demandFri, 17 Apr 2015 06:25:39 ESTVW said group sales rose 2.3 percent in March to 968,300 vehicles, as gains in Western Europe and China helped offset declines in the U.S. and South America. The result extended first-quarter deliveries to a total of 2. Renault wants France to back down on voting rights riseFri, 17 Apr 2015 05:07:06 ESTRenault urged France, its largest-single shareholder, to back down from plans to increase its voting weight in the automaker, warning that the balance of power within its alliance with Nissan was at risk. Mercedes-Maybach offers quiet luxuryFri, 17 Apr 2015 00:15:00 ESTMercedes has upgraded its flagship sedan by giving it a more spacious rear cabin and features such as voice amplification, extra lining to reduce wind noise and reclining rear seats to create the Mercedes-Maybach S class. Europe recovery continues in MarchThu, 16 Apr 2015 03:15:03 ESTEuropean car sales increased 11 percent in March, the strongest growth in a year, as the region's improving economy fueled demand for vehicles made by automakers such as VW Group, Renault and Fiat Chrysler. Last month 1. FCA has no plans to list other brands after FerrariThu, 16 Apr 2015 07:44:12 ESTFiat Chrysler Automobiles has no plans to list any other brand from its portfolio besides luxury unit Ferrari, FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne told a shareholder meeting. VW to issue statement on leadership today, report saysThu, 16 Apr 2015 08:41:30 ESTVW is expected to issue a statement on Friday following a meeting of top executives on Thursday afternoon to discuss a leadership crisis sparked by negative comments from chairman Ferdinand Piech against CEO Martin Winterkorn, according to a report. VW, Metzler terminate talks to sell LeasePlanThu, 16 Apr 2015 12:56:08 ESTVW Group and private German bank Metzler have terminated talks to sell LeasePlan, a Dutch fleet-management company with 1.42 million vehicles spread across 32 countries. Winterkorn opts out of German political eventThu, 16 Apr 2015 07:18:15 ESTVW CEO Martin Winterkorn cancelled plans to take part in a political event with Germany's ruling parties on Thursday because of meetings at the Wolfsburg-based carmaker, a Social Democratic Party official said. Fiat meeting goes from legendary to ordinaryThu, 16 Apr 2015 11:52:14 ESTFiat's investor meetings in Italy used to be legendary. Thursday's first gathering in Amsterdam was extremely ordinary. Grupo Antolin to buy Magna unit for $525 millionThu, 16 Apr 2015 09:17:36 ESTSpain's Grupo Antolin has reached an agreement to purchase Magna International's interiors unit for about $525 million, creating what Antolin estimates will be the world's third-largest player in the consolidating sector. Mahindra nears deal to buy Pininfarina, sources sayThu, 16 Apr 2015 08:10:37 ESTMahindra and Mahindra, India's largest maker of SUVs, is in the final stages of negotiations to buy Italian design and engineering firm Pininfarina, according to people familiar with the matter, who said a deal could be reached as early as next week. BorgWarner CEO welcomes electrification of the powertrainThu, 16 Apr 2015 00:15:00 ESTBorgWarner sees the electrification of the powertrain as a positive for the supplier despite its heavy reliance on sales of parts that EVs don't need, such as turbochargers and glow plugs, James Verrier, the company's CEO, explained to Automotive... Renault summons board in response to French stake hike, report saysWed, 15 Apr 2015 16:09:53 ESTRenault will hold an emergency board meeting today in response to France's plans to tighten its grip on the carmaker and its alliance with Nissan, a source said. France is increasing its Renault holding to 19.7 percent from 15 percent. VW panel to meet today on leadership crisis, source saysWed, 15 Apr 2015 13:08:45 ESTThe steering committee of VW Group's supervisory board will meet today to try to resolve a leadership crisis caused by the exposure of a rift between its CEO and chairman, a source told Reuters. Faurecia sales boosted by European car demand, weaker euroWed, 15 Apr 2015 12:46:43 ESTFaurecia said its first-quarter sales rose 14 percent, helped by currency tailwinds and a recovery in European vehicle demand. CO2 emissions from new cars in EU fell 2.6% in 2014, study saysWed, 15 Apr 2015 10:29:32 ESTAverage CO2 emissions from new cars sold in the EU fell 2.6 percent to to 123.4g/km last year, beating goals set for 2015 as part of efforts to slow climate change, the European Environment Agency said. VW struggle in 'diplomacy phase' as investors weigh CEO changeWed, 15 Apr 2015 06:11:57 ESTVolkswagen's leadership crisis has burst into the open with Chairman Ferdinand Piech's public denunciation of CEO Martin Winterkorn, but the standoff is now more likely to play out behind closed doors. PSA's upscale DS brand will join booming SUV/crossover segmentWed, 15 Apr 2015 05:40:16 ESTPSA/Peugeot-Citroen's upscale DS brand plans to launch a subcompact SUV/crossover that will rival models such as the Renault Captur and Mini Countryman. Crossovers to boost awd suppliers for rest of the decadeWed, 15 Apr 2015 00:15:00 ESTBooming demand for SUVs and crossovers in Europe and China will keep benefiting suppliers of all-wheel-drive technology such as GKN Driveline, BorgWarner and JTEKT for the rest of the decade. BMW sales rise 5% in March on minivan, 4-series demandTue, 14 Apr 2015 05:35:51 ESTBMW said sales of its core luxury brand rose 5.1 percent in March to a record 195,593 cars, thanks to strong demand for the 2-series Active Tourer minivan and 4-series coupe. Piech, Winterkorn to discuss VW leadership crisis, report saysTue, 14 Apr 2015 04:22:19 ESTVolkswagen Chairman Ferdinand Piech and the automaker's CEO, Martin Winterkorn, will discuss the company's leadership crisis when they meet in the next few days, a German newspaper reported. VW brand sales fall nearly 1% in March on weak Russia, BrazilTue, 14 Apr 2015 06:46:52 ESTVolkswagen Group said sales of its core VW brand fell 0.9 percent last month. UK tribunal cuts fine against accountancy firm over MG Rover workTue, 14 Apr 2015 06:53:48 ESTA UK tribunal has cut a 14 million pound ($20.5 million) fine against accountancy firm Deloitte in relation to work done for carmaker MG Rover Group. The British automaker was put into administration in 2005 with debts of 1. China's Qoros says subcompact SUV has German-inspired designTue, 14 Apr 2015 04:29:31 ESTChinese carmaker Qoros said its Qoros 2 concept has a "German-inspired" design. The concept for a subcompact SUV is set to become the brand's fourth model. It was created by Qoros design teams in Munich and Shanghai. Renault Kadjar, VW Tiguan will help drive compact SUV sales past 2 millionTue, 14 Apr 2015 00:15:00 ESTRivalry in Europe's compact SUV/crossover segment will intensify as more brands compete with refreshed models or all-new entries such as the Renault Kadjar. By 2020 sales in the segment are forecast to double to more than 2 million. Audi's car sales rise to monthly record as U.S. surge offsets weaker Europe, ChinaMon, 13 Apr 2015 06:30:55 ESTAudi said its vehicle sales increased 4.4 percent in March to 177,950, the highest level for any month in the carmaker's history, as surging volume in the U.S. offset a slowing Europe and China and a decline in Russia. Automakers benefit from China's SUV boomMon, 13 Apr 2015 02:55:04 ESTThe Shanghai auto show will be the perfect place to gauge the intensity of the SUV battle between the global and Chinese automakers. The SUV market is one of the few segments in which Chinese automakers are successfully challenging foreign rivals. Hyundai beats VW as China's top-ranked mass-market auto brandMon, 13 Apr 2015 05:27:05 ESTHyundai beat Volkswagen and General Motors' Buick to be the top-ranked mass-market auto brand in China in a state-backed survey, even as the South Korean automaker's deliveries there fell in the first quarter. Valeo says Audi will use its supercharger to reduce lag and save fuelMon, 13 Apr 2015 00:01:00 ESTValeo says other automakers likely will follow Audi in using its electric supercharger that boosts an engine's acceleration while also saving fuel. The supplier said Audi will launch a production car with the supercharger next year. Automakers defend diesels, call them key to meeting CO2 goalsMon, 13 Apr 2015 00:15:00 ESTAutomakers in Europe are calling for long-term clarity on legislation that affects diesels after some governments, including France, started to discourage buyers from purchasing vehicles that use the fuel because of air pollution concerns. VW board members back Winterkorn after Piech criticism creates crisisSun, 12 Apr 2015 10:47:13 ESTVolkswagen Chairman Ferdinand Piech faces resistance within the automaker's supervisory board to his criticism of CEO Martin Winterkorn, deepening a leadership crisis at the automaker. Winterkorn will not succeed Piech as VW chairman, report saysFri, 10 Apr 2015 09:09:30 ESTVolkswagen CEO Martin Winterkorn has no chance of succeeding Ferdinand Piech as the automaker's chairman, a German magazine reported. The relationship between Piech and Winterkorn is unsettled, the magazine reported. Ford bullish on Russia as it takes control of local JVFri, 10 Apr 2015 05:58:38 ESTFord says it has confidence in the Russian market despite collapsing vehicle sales. Ford is taking control of its Russian joint venture with Sollers and providing it with additional financial support. VW will expand Slovak plant for Bentley SUV productionFri, 10 Apr 2015 00:01:00 ESTVW Group will invest 500 million euros to expand its Bratislava, Slovakia, factory as it prepares to add production of bodies for Bentley's new SUV. EVs under pressure as plug-ins rise in EuropeFri, 10 Apr 2015 00:01:00 ESTMore full-electric vehicles were sold in Europe last year than plug-in hybrids, but plug-ins are poised to overtake EVs soon. The biggest market for EVs was Norway while the Netherlands was the biggest market for plug-ins. Citroen mulls new naming structure for its lineupFri, 10 Apr 2015 00:01:00 ESTCitroen is considering a new naming structure to help better distinguish its cars within parent PSA/Peugeot-Citroen's range of vehicles. BMW's tech chief ready to meet changing consumer demandsFri, 10 Apr 2015 00:15:00 ESTKlaus Froehlich's recent promotion to BMW Group randd boss comes as the automaker shakes up its powertrain and platform lineups. Opel CEO affirms goal of posting Europe profit in 2016Thu, 9 Apr 2015 11:05:37 ESTOpel CEO Karl-Thomas Neumann affirmed that the European arm of General Motors will return to profit in 2016, as continued growth in southern and central Europe would help offset a slump in Russia sales. Daimler nearing decision on Russian Mercedes plant, report saysThu, 9 Apr 2015 00:01:00 ESTDaimler has narrowed down potential sites for a Mercedes car plant in Russia to three locations, according to a Russian media report. Former FAW-VW exec sentenced to life for accepting $5.3 million in bribesThu, 9 Apr 2015 05:32:43 ESTA former top executive at Volkswagen's China joint venture with FAW Group, Shi Tao, was sentenced to life in prison for accepting $5.3 million in bribes. The sentence is the latest development in corruption investigations involving FAW. Skoda unions issue strike threat over pay demandsThu, 9 Apr 2015 06:53:27 ESTUnions at Skoda, Volkswagen's Czech unit, warned that they may strike after rejecting the company's offer for a 3 percent pay rise.%]