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    • By William Maley
      The rivalry of the Chevrolet Camaro and Ford Mustang has been going for ages in the U.S. But now this fight has expanded into China.
      Automotive News reports that a growing group of Chinese buyers are being drawn towards to these models as the exude the no-apologies Americana attitude.
      "We're seeing the beginning of a muscle car culture here. Something that is uniquely American appeals to the Chinese consumer. The image that it relays to the automotive public is very positive," said James Chao, a China market auto analyst with IHS Markit.
      Sales of both models are small with Chevrolet only moving 2,000 Camaros since its launch 2011. Ford is doing slightly better with 6,200 Mustangs sold since its launch in 2015. In the first quarter, Mustang sales saw a 90 percent increase to 963 vehicles. Part of the reason for the slow sales comes down to the price. The Camaro starts about 399,900 yuan (about $58,000) - more than double of the base price of $26,900 in the U.S. The Mustang isn't that far behind, costing about $15 dollars less. Prices are increased due to a 25 percent import tariff on U.S. made vehicles, homologation and shipping fees, and Chinese buyers trending to splurge on higher-time models.
      But despite the low sales, the Camaro and Mustang are bringing buyers to dealers. These models act as eye candy to help draw shoppers into showrooms with the hope they'll purchase a vehicle, where it be the eye candy or something a little less exciting.
      Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      The rivalry of the Chevrolet Camaro and Ford Mustang has been going for ages in the U.S. But now this fight has expanded into China.
      Automotive News reports that a growing group of Chinese buyers are being drawn towards to these models as the exude the no-apologies Americana attitude.
      "We're seeing the beginning of a muscle car culture here. Something that is uniquely American appeals to the Chinese consumer. The image that it relays to the automotive public is very positive," said James Chao, a China market auto analyst with IHS Markit.
      Sales of both models are small with Chevrolet only moving 2,000 Camaros since its launch 2011. Ford is doing slightly better with 6,200 Mustangs sold since its launch in 2015. In the first quarter, Mustang sales saw a 90 percent increase to 963 vehicles. Part of the reason for the slow sales comes down to the price. The Camaro starts about 399,900 yuan (about $58,000) - more than double of the base price of $26,900 in the U.S. The Mustang isn't that far behind, costing about $15 dollars less. Prices are increased due to a 25 percent import tariff on U.S. made vehicles, homologation and shipping fees, and Chinese buyers trending to splurge on higher-time models.
      But despite the low sales, the Camaro and Mustang are bringing buyers to dealers. These models act as eye candy to help draw shoppers into showrooms with the hope they'll purchase a vehicle, where it be the eye candy or something a little less exciting.
      Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)
    • By dfelt
      G. David Felt - Staff Writer Alternative Energy - www.cheersandgears.com
      China’s Influence on GM, EVs, and Others!
      We saw just at the end of 2016 Toyota saying they would build a team to focus on EVs. This being a complete reversal of their pledge in 2013 to focus on Hydrogen as the practical alternative to traditional ICE autos. Toyota will have a long range EV auto out on the market for the 2020 auto year. Being that 2019 is when you're 2020 autos will start selling, this puts Toyota 4 years behind GM's Chevrolet BOLT EV.
      What would cause this change to happen? China is what has happened. China started to push the global auto industry by stating that 8 percent of auto sales in 2018 be each vendor has to be EV or plug-in hybrid. 10 percent is the number for 2019 and 12 percent in 2020.
      Toyota one would think should be fine with their Prius line of Hybrids until you realize that China has stated all hybrids such as the Prius, Volt and others built outside of China are considered ICE autos. Currently the only Hybrid being built in China that is a legal hybrid is the Cadillac CT6 plugin hybrid. Toyota is planning to start selling a plugin hybrid in China in 2018 as a 2019 model.
      So we are seeing that Toyota is being forced to get over their EV allergy and come up with a real plan to have a global EV on the market in 2019 as a 2020 model year. Daimler has a large EV roll out planned for the global market by 2021. VW has stated they will have multiple EVs rolled out around 2019 through 2021. So has BMW, Audi, etc.
      So where does that leave GM? What is GMs strategy now that China is flexing their muscle and setting some big standards for an auto company to play in their backyard?
      We have the Cadillac CT6 plugin hybrid. Chevrolet BOLT EV able to be exported to China. GM announced that they will start building a China market Chevrolet Volt as they start to push the Chevrolet brand in China next year. GM has also announced a Buick Velite 5 Hybrid for the Chinese market starting at 265,800 yuan or about $38,600 US. This will have a 72 mile pure electric mode before the generator kicks in giving it a 480 mile range. EVs in China are exempt from sales tax and license plate quotas.
      According to Fox Business news, Buick sold 1 million autos in China for calendar year 2016 rising to the number two auto brand sold behind Volkswagen. They also go onto say that Chevrolet has been selling legacy models only up till now and GM has announced 20 new models for China by 2020 the first being a China version of the Chevrolet Equinox. GM says China is demanding the same models they have in the US and as such, China and the US will be more aligned to have identical models. GMs China business is stated to have produced $2 billion in income last year. China clearly helping GM to sell 10 million cars in 2016 globally.
      How important is the China Market to GM? In the Month of January Cadillac sold 10,298 autos in the US. Cadillac sold 18,000 in China for the month of January. Clearly China will continue to take on a bigger and bigger role in GM’s ongoing growth.
      So where does that leave GM in regards to EVs, auto production, etc.? Reuters points to a story they did back in January 2016 where CEO Mary Barra stated that they could build the dies used to stamp the auto parts in china for 20 to 40 percent less than in Europe or the US. Dies will start to be built and shipped out worldwide from China. Clearly this would tend to show that GM will be affected by the China market more and more.
      So this brings me back to my original question of what is GMs plan for their EV strategy. We have seen and heard so much about the competition and yet with GM this seems to be a black hole. Knowing that GM sold about 1.5 million auto’s last year in China and now for next year 10 percent will have to be EV / Plugin Hybrids, that means 150,000 of these auto’s. For Volkswagen, this is an even bigger number since they are number 1 in the market and have no EV or hybrid that I am aware of.
      All Auto companies who do not have a specific plugin hybrid built in china or EV to import into China is going to find selling auto’s to be very difficult.
      References
      Reuters story
      AP story
      Fox Business Story
      CNN Money Story
      Motley Fool Story
      Reuters 2016 story
    • By William Maley
      If the Volkswagen diesel emission scandal hasn't swayed you from wanting one, then you'll be happy to hear Volkswagen will once again be able to sell brand-new 2015 model year TDI models. Green Car Reports says near 11,000 TDI models will soon be back up for sale once they are updated with new software, making them legal.
      Volkswagen does caution those interested in picking up a new TDI to call their nearest dealership to see if they have any in stock.
      But that's not all. Volkswagen is offering some massive discounts on these models. CarsDirect reports that Volkswagen is offering 0% APR for up to 72 months and $5,000 cash bonus if you decide to buy. Interested in leasing one? Volkswagen will offer a cash bonus of $8,500. 
      There are a couple of caveats to this offer. First, you need to have an excellent credit history to qualify for either offer. Second is that Volkswagen isn't advertising this offer.
      "We will not be advertising the available incentives from our financing arm as they [sic] vehicle availability will vary per dealership," said Volkswagen spokeswoman Jeannine Ginivan.
      Source: Green Car Reports, CarsDirect

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      If the Volkswagen diesel emission scandal hasn't swayed you from wanting one, then you'll be happy to hear Volkswagen will once again be able to sell brand-new 2015 model year TDI models. Green Car Reports says near 11,000 TDI models will soon be back up for sale once they are updated with new software, making them legal.
      Volkswagen does caution those interested in picking up a new TDI to call their nearest dealership to see if they have any in stock.
      But that's not all. Volkswagen is offering some massive discounts on these models. CarsDirect reports that Volkswagen is offering 0% APR for up to 72 months and $5,000 cash bonus if you decide to buy. Interested in leasing one? Volkswagen will offer a cash bonus of $8,500. 
      There are a couple of caveats to this offer. First, you need to have an excellent credit history to qualify for either offer. Second is that Volkswagen isn't advertising this offer.
      "We will not be advertising the available incentives from our financing arm as they [sic] vehicle availability will vary per dealership," said Volkswagen spokeswoman Jeannine Ginivan.
      Source: Green Car Reports, CarsDirect
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