As the auto industry rumbled through a tumultuous year, there were bold new undertakings, some notable end points, realignments of longtime relationships and numerous examples of industry luminaries peering through a fog of uncertainty in an effort to predict the industry's future.
A time of transition
The last Ford Crown Victoria was built in St. Thomas, Ontario, in September.
Volkswagen closed its only U.S. assembly plant, in Westmoreland, Pa., in 1988. But it was back in action this year, launching production of a redesigned Passat at a new factory in Chattanooga.
UAW President Bob King negotiated agreements with the Detroit 3 that will raise hourly labor costs, at most, by 1 percent in each of the next four years.
When the Hummer brand vanished, Tom Durant's Classic Hummer store in Grapevine, Texas, sat idle. Members of the Dallas Cowboys were idle this summer, too, because of the NFL lockout. So Durant invited them over to pump some iron.
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