NHTSA’s chief must be feeling Opening Day jitters

11:03 am U.S. ET | March 31, 2014
Opening Day is bittersweet when you expect your baseball team to finish last. And that’s how David Friedman, acting head of NHTSA, will feel on Tuesday when Congress kicks off a grueling doubleheader of hearings on GM's ignition switch woes.... Read More »


U.S. finalizes plan to phase in rearview camera mandate, starting in 2016

12:28 pm U.S. ET | March 31, 2014
The Department of Transportation today finalized a set of federal standards for rear visibility that will require all new vehicles under 10,000 pounds to have backup cameras by mid-2018. Congress called for the rules in 2008 after a spate of accidents in which parents driving cars or trucks backed over their young children, killing them.... Read More »



4 big questions for GM, NHTSA

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 31, 2014
Some of the vexing questions looming over General Motors' decadelong failure to recall cars with a deadly ignition-switch defect could get answers this week -- or at least a more glaring spotlight.... Read More »



N.J. weighs direct EV sales; states covet gigafactory

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 31, 2014
The Tesla vs. dealers clash was already intense. Now the fight has escalated, with the addition of presidential politics and bidding for a battery factory. And in a move that could have far-reaching implications, a New Jersey legislator has introduced a bill that would let any manufacturer of electric vehicles sell them directly to the public, bypassing franchised dealers.... Read More »


GM leads in disclosures, not danger

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 31, 2014
Early and oftenFrom 2005 through 2007, a key period when General Motors fixed a defective ignition switch in the Chevrolet Cobalt and Saturn Ion without recalling the old switch, GM sent five times as many early-warning reports of deaths and injuries to U.S. regulators as its competitors did.... Read More »


Antitrust regulators raid exhaust makers

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 31, 2014
European Union antitrust regulators raided Tenneco Inc. and several other auto exhaust systems makers in the latest crackdown against suspected price fixing in the global auto industry.... Read More »


Ram van falls a few fridges shy of cargo claim

12:46 pm U.S. ET | March 28, 2014
When Ram converted the Fiat Ducato last fall into the 2014 Ram ProMaster for the United States, it also converted the van's cargo capacity from Europe: 15 cubic meters to 530 cubic feet. But there's a problem: In the United States, cargo capacity is measured differently.... Read More »


Obama says U.S.-EU trade talks are moving forward

March 28, 2014 09:44 CET
President Barack Obama said his administration is moving forward on establishing a trade pact between the U.S. and EU. Automakers are lobbying hard for the pact to end import tariffs and adopt standard safety and environmental regulations.... Read More »



CFPB, FTC Web sites differ in tone

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 26, 2014
While the Federal Trade commission and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau share a commitment to ensure consumers get a fair shake on auto finance, they gather and impart consumer information differently.... Read More »


GM recall shows limits of 51 U.S. investigators tracking 248 million cars

7:55 am U.S. ET | March 26, 2014
The federal office responsible for monitoring safety defects in cars has had its budget stagnate and its staff cut by one-fifth from highs more than a decade ago, when Congress tried to strengthen it.... Read More »


GM recall prompts bill that would make early-warning safety reports public

12:48 pm U.S. ET | March 25, 2014
Two United States senators introduced a bill today to expand the public's access to automakers' safety filings with regulators, saying federal reforms could prevent fatal crashes like those linked to a defective General Motors ignition switch.... Read More »


After Toyota penalty, U.S. prosecutors consider new approach on company misconduct

8:20 am U.S. ET | March 25, 2014
Federal prosecutors are considering using the legal theory behind a penalty imposed on Toyota to go after misconduct in industries ranging from auto and airplane makers to mining, a Department of Justice official told Reuters.... Read More »


Chrysler decision may shield GM on Cobalt liability

11:50 am U.S. ET | March 24, 2014
Chrysler Group LLC, the Fiat-controlled entity that bought the carmaker out of bankruptcy, won a courtroom victory this month that helps GM avoid some claims arising from ignition-switch defects in Chevrolet Cobalts and other vehicles.... Read More »


GM sued over fatal crash tied to ignition defect

3:18 pm U.S. ET | March 24, 2014
General Motors has been hit with what is believed to be the first wrongful death lawsuit over ignition switch problems since it recalled 1.6 million vehicles in February. The lawsuit was filed late on Friday in Minnesota state court on behalf of three teenage girls who were severely injured or killed in a 2006 crash involving a 2005 Chevy Cobalt, one of the models GM recalled over ignition problems.... Read More »


14 years after Ford-Firestone, Michigan's Upton to confront GM

8:01 am U.S. ET | March 24, 2014
Fred Upton, the Michigan Republican leading hearings on Capitol Hill into General Motors' recall of 1.6 million cars, has some of the closest ties to the automobile industry of any member of Congress.... Read More »


U.S. eyes bankruptcy link in GM ignition defect probe, report says

3:48 pm U.S. ET | March 22, 2014
Federal authorities are investigating whether General Motors hid an ignition switch defect when it filed for bankruptcy in 2009, The New York Times reported on Saturday.... Read More »


GM prepares dealers for onslaught of recall work

3:24 pm U.S. ET | March 21, 2014
General Motors is lining dealer inventories with rental cars as customers begin turning in Chevrolet Cobalts, Saturn Ions and other recalled models with faulty ignition switches for repair. GM has altered its rental car policy and has agreed to work with Enterprise, Hertz and Avis to ensure rentals are available to customers if demand exhausts dealer courtesy cars. GM also is offering customers towing service and a $500 discount on new cars in addition to the free fix.... Read More »


Investor sues GM over 'immoral' delay in fixing ignitions

3:49 pm U.S. ET | March 21, 2014
General Motors and CEO Mary Barra were sued by an investor over delays in addressing ignition-switch defects and other flaws that prompted recalls of more than 3 million vehicles.... Read More »


Rough road ahead for GM as U.S. Congress plots safety probe

4:01 pm U.S. ET | March 21, 2014
The congressional investigation into General Motors auto defects will bring aggressive scrutiny to a company with powerful lobbying clout and strong ties on Capitol Hill. GM's recall of 1.6 million vehicles, due to an ignition-switch problem linked to 12 fatalities, has put the Detroit automaker in Congress' cross hairs, with potentially dramatic hearings kicking off in April.... Read More »


Akio Toyoda calls recalls a turning point for company

11:45 am U.S. ET | March 20, 2014
A day after his company agreed to pay a record $1.2 billion to settle a criminal probe into safety issues, the head of Toyota Motor Corp. called the preceding recalls a turning point for the carmaker. The recalls marked a shift in how Toyota and the industry think about safety, President Akio Toyoda said. It's no longer just about passing regulations but about delivering a sense of security.... Read More »



House committee presses CFPB for answers

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 19, 2014
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has ignored a congressional deadline to specify how it determines discrimination in auto lending.... Read More »


BMW sees annual output of 100,000 units for its 'i' electric range

March 19, 2014 16:03 CET
BMW says it may build more than 100,000 units a year of its 'i' range of battery-powered cars by 2020 to help meet tougher CO2 emissions regulations.... Read More »



Why it might be OK for GM to mirror Toyota on recall decisions

2:01 pm U.S. ET | March 18, 2014
On Monday it seemed as though GM's ignition switch recall wouldn't plumb the depths of Toyota's unintended-acceleration debacle back in 2010. Yet mere hours after I wrote an analysis to that effect, GM's path took an eerily similar turn. And it might actually be a good thing.... Read More »



GM recall is bad, but not yet Toyota-bad

3:30 pm U.S. ET | March 17, 2014
As bad as the General Motors ignition switch recall is, the storm still doesn't match the hysteria whipped up four years ago by Toyota's unintended-acceleration crisis. The Toyota recall was, and still is, the benchmark mammoth recall of our time.... Read More »


GM to recall 1.5M U.S. vehicles after Barra orders stepped up review

11:31 am U.S. ET | March 17, 2014
General Motors, under intense public pressure over its slow response to an ignition switch defect in its small cars, said today that it will recall more than 1.5 million additional vehicles for a trio of unrelated defects -- twice as many as the automaker recalled in the United States during all of 2013.... Read More »


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