Litigation and Regulations

U.S. Senate panel OKs auto industry whistleblower incentive

1:18 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 26, 2015
A measure that would offer financial incentives for auto industry employees to expose safety defects won unanimous backing from a US Senate panel today....
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Automakers choose aerospace firm to run Takata airbag tests

10:54 am U.S. ET | Feb. 26, 2015
A consortium of 10 automakers formed to investigate the root cause behind Takata airbag inflator ruptures said today they have selected Orbital ATK to test the supplier's troubled inflators on their behalf....
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U.S. orders Takata to preserve airbag inflators for federal probe

4:39 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 25, 2015
A federal safety regulator on Wednesday ordered troubled Japanese supplier Takata to preserve all airbag inflators removed through a recall process as evidence for a federal investigation and private litigation cases....
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EPA tweaks fuel economy test to improve accuracy of mpg labels

3:37 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 23, 2015
The EPA today issued updated procedures for a critical part of fuel economy testing that some automakers have struggled with in the last two years. The update covers how automakers should calculate road load values in coast down tests, which measure the rolling resistance and aerodynamic drag of vehicles as they glide from 70 mph to a stop on a straight, flat track....
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GM gets 33 more claims for faulty ignition-switch compensation

11:19 am U.S. ET | Feb. 23, 2015
GM received another 33 claims for compensation for ignition switch defects in its cars in the past week, bringing the total to 4,345, according to the administrator of the company's compensation program....
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Apple hiring patterns, patents signal automotive r&d plans

3:55 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 20, 2015
A year and a half ago, Apple had applied for just eight patents related to auto batteries. Recently, it has hired a bevy of engineers, just one of whom had already filed for 17 in his former career, according to a Thomson Reuters analysis....
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NHTSA to fine Takata $14K a day for failing to 'fully cooperate' in airbag probe

10:31 am U.S. ET | Feb. 20, 2015
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration today slapped Takata with a $14,000-per-day fine for failing to "fully cooperate" with the agency's investigation into exploding airbag inflators made by the supplier that have been linked to at least six deaths. NHTSA also warned Takata that it will refer the situation to the Department of Justice if it fails to remedy the situation....
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Daicel to build U.S. airbag inflator plant earlier than planned

6:24 am U.S. ET | Feb. 20, 2015
Daicel said it would build a second US factory for airbag inflators in early 2016, bringing forward original plans partly to meet automakers' demand for alternatives to potentially deadly inflators made by Takata....
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Tesla joined by Koch Brothers, Sierra Club in fight with dealers

3:47 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 17, 2015
Talk about strange bedfellows. The environmental group Sierra Club and Americans for Prosperity, the political action group funded by the Koch brothers, are both backing Tesla Motors in its battle to avoid franchised dealers and sell cars direct to consumers....
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GM gets 75 more claims for compensation; 4 more death claims approved

1:40 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 16, 2015
General Motors received 75 claims for compensation for ignition-switch defects in its cars last week, bringing the total to 4,312, the official administering the compensation program said on Monday....
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GM recalling 81,000-plus vehicles over steering problem

3:46 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 14, 2015
General Motors recalled 81,123 cars because of concerns about their electric power steering systems. The recall is an expansion of one last year that recalled 1.3 million vehicles for steering problems....
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TRW says adjusted Q4 profits rose 26%

9:24 am U.S. ET | Feb. 13, 2015
TRW Automotive Holdings, which is being acquired by German supplier ZF Friedrichshafen AG, today said fourth-quarter adjusted earnings grew 26 percent from last year....
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NICK BUNKLEY

Why you can't blame only GM for the Year of the Recall

10:31 am U.S. ET | Feb. 13, 2015
Don't blame General Motors for the Year of the Recall. At least not entirely. Sure, GM started it....
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Takata sued by recyclers for lost airbag values

2:41 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 12, 2015
The Automotive Recyclers Association has filed a lawsuit against Takata, claiming that auto recyclers that wanted to salvage and resell Takata-made airbags will be unable to do so....
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Cars recalled in U.S. reached 64 million in 2014, NHTSA says

4:13 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 12, 2015
Carmakers recalled about 64 million vehicles in the United States last year, more than double the previous record set in 2004, according to official government data....
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Patent 'trolls' target automakers, and Ford pushes back

6:42 am U.S. ET | Feb. 11, 2015
Ford was sued for patent infringement more than a dozen times between 2012 and 2014 by so-called “patent trolls.” These outfits, also known as patent assertion companies, initiate patent cases but don't sell products of their own. Now they're targeting automakers, but Ford is pushing back....
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Subaru sues Calif. dealership, claims it filed false customer surveys

3:18 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 10, 2015
Subaru of America filed a federal lawsuit against one of its California dealerships and its employees, accusing them of forging more than 200 customer satisfaction surveys to improve the dealership's reputation and avoid termination....
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Senator's report cites cars' data security holes

2:40 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 9, 2015
Connectivity technologies have made automobiles vulnerable to hackers who could gain control of vehicle functions or compromise the security of vehicle data, according to a report released today by a leading congressional voice on auto safety....
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Ex-Takata engineer talks to plaintiffs' attorneys

12:01 am U.S. ET | Feb. 9, 2015
A former Takata Corp. engineer plans to work with plaintiffs' attorneys against the embattled supplier, arguing that its recalled airbag inflators suffer a key chemistry flaw....
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GM gets 57 more claims for faulty ignition switch compensation

12:19 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 9, 2015
General Motors received another 57 claims for compensation for ignition switch defects in its cars in the past week, bringing the total to 4,237, according to the administrator of the company's compensation program....
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GM extends top lawyer's stay as search for successor continues

8:56 am U.S. ET | Feb. 9, 2015
General Motors said it has extended the tenure of its top lawyer, Michael Millikin, whose department was criticized over how it handled the issue of the automaker's defective ignition switch linked to more than 50 deaths, and the search for a replacement is ongoing....
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LETTER TO THE EDITOR

More thoughts on auto safety

12:01 am U.S. ET | Feb. 9, 2015
Crashes still kill more than 30,000 motorists annually and seriously injure as many. Keith Crain's Jan. 26 column, "Time to rethink auto safety," presented an aspect of what we should think about, but we are effectively driving blind: We have little timely detail on what is happening in crashes....
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Takata whistleblower willing to testify on deadly airbag flaws

6:23 am U.S. ET | Feb. 5, 2015
A former Takata engineer has told a US congressional committee he's willing to testify that he warned of deadly consequences before the company chose a design for airbags that were later recalled due to lethal flaws....
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2 executives at Japan's Mitsuba indicted in U.S. for price-fixing

3:56 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 5, 2015
Two executives of Japanese auto parts company Mitsuba were indicted today on charges of conspiring to fix the prices of auto parts and obstruction of justice, the Justice Department said....
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Delphi expects safety system sales to jump 50% for years

1:24 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 5, 2015
Delphi Automotive said sales of advanced vehicle-safety systems would jump 50 percent annually for the next several years....
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