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  • William Maley
    William Maley

    Marchionne Still Dreams of A FCA-GM Merger

      Marchionne, No means no.

    You have to admire Fiat Chrysler Automobiles' CEO Sergio Marchionne for still hanging onto the dream of FCA and General Motors merging, despite being told repeatedly that isn't going to happen. At the Geneva Motor Show this week, Marchionne put out there that he is still interested in getting together with GM.

    "I never close any doors. I may shamelessly try and knock again ... on the GM door or any door if I thought it was a good thing for the business. Absolutely, without even blinking. The desirability of GM as a potential merger candidate remains untouched," said Marchionne.

    Unsurprisingly, GM shot down Marchionne's dreams.

    "We weren't interested before and we're even less interested now," said GM President Dan Ammann.

    Marchionne isn't one to give up however, he has a plan B: Volkswagen. As he told Bloomberg, with PSA Group becoming the second largest automaker in Europe with the acquisition of Opel/Vauxhall, this could put Volkswagen in a vulnerable position. He sees the company possibly looking for a partner.

    “I have no doubt that at the relevant time VW may show up and have a chat” about a merger, said Marchionne.

    Volkswagen CEO Matthias Müller slapped down that idea when asked.

    “We are not ready for talks about anything. I haven’t seen Marchionne for months,” said Müller.

    “We have other problems.” 

    Source: Bloomberg , Reuters, (2)

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    If GM put a ban on wearing black sweaters at work, Sergio would leave them alone forever.

    He should try to merge with PSA, no one wants cars "Imported From Detroit" he could try some imported from France and use Citroen to fill Chrysler dealerships.   And they can consolidate some of the other brands.

     

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    :roflmao: VW has many other options before even needing to think about FCA. What a joke. 

    Yes, one could make a case for VW and FCA so VW gets Jeep and Ram and sells off Dodge/Chrysler to some China Company. Fiat/Alfa would also either be sold off or closed.

    Sergio just does not seem to get it, he is clueless about what other companies would need to fulfill the final pieces. VW has just about everything they need and might only be interested in Jeep / Ram. Course they could also easily build their own versions of those two which is what I really think VW would do.

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    11 minutes ago, dfelt said:

    VW has just about everything they need and might only be interested in Jeep / Ram. Course they could also easily build their own versions of those two which is what I really think VW would do.

    While I agree.. Ram and Jeep as names carry a ton of weight that even if VW made a better product it would take sooooo long before it overtook Jeep/Ram in sales.

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    3 minutes ago, ccap41 said:

    While I agree.. Ram and Jeep as names carry a ton of weight that even if VW made a better product it would take sooooo long before it overtook Jeep/Ram in sales.

    True name recognition in the US with those two is big. That is the only reason I could see VW buy those two items. Pass on the rest. If VW did want to do it all in house though I believe they could.

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    1 hour ago, dfelt said:

    True name recognition in the US with those two is big. That is the only reason I could see VW buy those two items. Pass on the rest. If VW did want to do it all in house though I believe they could.

    Oh I definitely think VW is capable of making any vehicle great that they want to. It might be bland..but great.. lol

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    Here are the facts. 

    Sergio is an idiot. 

    FCA at some point is going to crash as they can not continue on and one economic turn down will kill them. 

    Once Fiat crashes look for VW or Daimler to swoop in and buy Jeep and Ram from FCA out of the wreckage. 

    The only thing is VW needs to pay of the Diesel issue first as they have big loans on that secured by Bentley. Sales have been good so they should get back on track soon. 

    As for PSA well they are going to go no where. They have no real fans outside of Europe and even inside they only have friends in France. They are mostly a punch line for Jeremy Clarkson. 

    GM left Europe for Geopolitical, labor and economic reasons they themselves seen as outsiders could not get much help with. Often you have to take a step back before you can move forward. But in this case with 16 years of losses in Europe it was not really much of a step back.  

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    6 minutes ago, aurora97 said:

    Sorry, but this article reads like it was originally from The Onion.  Why would Sergio criticize the PSA/Opel deal when it was his idea to spin off Ferrari as its own publicly traded company?

    Welcome the Twilight Zone, here is your black sweater.

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    VW looks at things globally, the only global brand at FCA with any value is Jeep.   I am sure VW would love to have Jeep in the arsenal, Ram trucks would make profit in USA would would help them, but isn't like something they really need.  I don't think the value of Jeep offsets the worthlessness of Dodge/Chrysler/Fiat/Alfa/Maserati to VW.  

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    There certainly is more to FCA of value than just Jeep.

    SEAT's highest volume line is the Ibiza: it sold 160K in 2015.
    Skoda's highest volume line is the Octavia: it sold 436K in 2016.

    Ram sold 544K units in 2016 in the U.S. only. And without a doubt the profit margins on the Ram are many times over that of the ibiza or Octavia. Cash cows are always appealing in a business case.

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    13 hours ago, hyperv6 said:

    Here are the facts. 

    Sergio is an idiot. 

    FCA at some point is going to crash as they can not continue on and one economic turn down will kill them. 

    Once Fiat crashes look for VW or Daimler to swoop in and buy Jeep and Ram from FCA out of the wreckage. 

    The only thing is VW needs to pay of the Diesel issue first as they have big loans on that secured by Bentley. Sales have been good so they should get back on track soon. 

    As for PSA well they are going to go no where. They have no real fans outside of Europe and even inside they only have friends in France. They are mostly a punch line for Jeremy Clarkson. 

    GM left Europe for Geopolitical, labor and economic reasons they themselves seen as outsiders could not get much help with. Often you have to take a step back before you can move forward. But in this case with 16 years of losses in Europe it was not really much of a step back.  

    Moe hyperbole.  they are actually paying down their debt at an incredible rate.  the new platform and turbo 4 engines that will spread across the line are now out there, the new Compass looks to be a hit, The Wagoneer, Grand Wagoneer, and new Ram are coming.  The Compass looks to be a hit.  The LX cars are cash cows as the tooling is long paid off and the Charger has a strong following in police fleets.  The KSP for example uses almost exclusively Chargers.  Despite a lack of updates, the Journey continues to post higher sales numbers each month while being a cash cow, as, again, the tooling is long paid off.  Hellcat demand continues to outpace production capacities.  They could be the number 1 seller in the world and you would still be predicting doom........

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    If all these FCA products were such great cash cows, Sergio wouldn't constantly be looking for merger partners.  FCA is spending almost nothing in on new products, so what do they sell in 2020 with so little in the pipeline?  And one global downturn, recession or gas spike could be 2009 all over again for them and he knows it.  They are making money now because the auto market has had back to back record sales years, that won't last forever.  

    Maybe he should contact Carlos Ghosn, he like alliances and mergers, and he took on Mitsubishi so apparently no car maker is too far lost for him to take on.  Nissan would get the full size truck they want, Renault can absorb any Fiat models worth keeping, they could sell Renault in USA at existing dealers (the new Renault Alpine 110 looks pretty sweet), they can kill Chrysler and sell the Pacifica at Nissan or Dodge or both, they'd keep Jeep as is.

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    11 minutes ago, smk4565 said:

    If all these FCA products were such great cash cows, Sergio wouldn't constantly be looking for merger partners.  FCA is spending almost nothing in on new products, so what do they sell in 2020 with so little in the pipeline?  And one global downturn, recession or gas spike could be 2009 all over again for them and he knows it.  They are making money now because the auto market has had back to back record sales years, that won't last forever.  

    Maybe he should contact Carlos Ghosn, he like alliances and mergers, and he took on Mitsubishi so apparently no car maker is too far lost for him to take on.  Nissan would get the full size truck they want, Renault can absorb any Fiat models worth keeping, they could sell Renault in USA at existing dealers (the new Renault Alpine 110 looks pretty sweet), they can kill Chrysler and sell the Pacifica at Nissan or Dodge or both, they'd keep Jeep as is.

    Um, there is tons of new product coming in the next few years.  I understand what they are doing right now is using what they have to get rid of debt rather quickly before starting a costly product onslaught.  We know the new Alfa sedan and SUV are just a beginning of what we are going to see as the platform and turbo 4 will be spreading across the lineup.  They have to.  The more vehicles a platform can cover, they more they get to amortize the cost, and the more profit they make. 

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    Yes Stew.. I have to agree with Smk and Hyper on this one. FCA is for all intents a 3 Trick Pony.. in that they have Jeep. But then they have Ram.. and LX cars NOT being updated in order to pay the bills. Look at the fact that FCA's profits are very weak considering the last two points made. One good update to Ram and profit SAP is on the way. One good spike in Fuel costs and BOOM.. their reliance on the SRT "We Build Excitement" (lol) goes away. Jeep is really the only thing that I could see GM really wanting.. Maserati would probably be desirable to Ford. Ferrari is gone on its own. Alfa is really nothing to write home about. Chrysler is pretty much a minivan. They have no.. and I mean no small cars in the mainstream brand (Dodge). They have no.. and I mean no mid-size in the mainstream brand. Pretty much FCA in the U.S. is Charger cop cars, Challenger, Ram, and Jeep... oh and a minivan. 

    Personally I see no reason for Mary to even consider it once those facts are presented. Does GM need SRT?? Hell no. The Camaro alone does everything that the performance cars at Dodge do better. They have the capability, and frankly the necessity for scale to build an Omega or Alpha-L Impala that could put the Charger on the flatbed. Does GM need Ram??? Hell no. Come on. Does GM need Jeep??? Not even. GMC could easily take on Jeep I think if they wanted to. 

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    10 minutes ago, Cmicasa the Great said:

    Yes Stew.. I have to agree with Smk and Hyper on this one. FCA is for all intents a 3 Trick Pony.. in that they have Jeep. But then they have Ram.. and LX cars NOT being updated in order to pay the bills. Look at the fact that FCA's profits are very weak considering the last two points made. One good update to Ram and profit SAP is on the way. One good spike in Fuel costs and BOOM.. their reliance on the SRT "We Build Excitement" (lol) goes away. Jeep is really the only thing that I could see GM really wanting.. Maserati would probably be desirable to Ford. Ferrari is gone on its own. Alfa is really nothing to write home about. Chrysler is pretty much a minivan. They have no.. and I mean no small cars in the mainstream brand (Dodge). They have no.. and I mean no mid-size in the mainstream brand. Pretty much FCA in the U.S. is Charger cop cars, Challenger, Ram, and Jeep... oh and a minivan. 

    Personally I see no reason for Mary to even consider it once those facts are presented. Does GM need SRT?? Hell no. The Camaro alone does everything that the performance cars at Dodge do better. They have the capability, and frankly the necessity for scale to build an Omega or Alpha-L Impala that could put the Charger on the flatbed. Does GM need Ram??? Hell no. Come on. Does GM need Jeep??? Not even. GMC could easily take on Jeep I think if they wanted to. 

    Of course, you see everything through GM Rose colored glasses.......

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    12 hours ago, balthazar said:

    There certainly is more to FCA of value than just Jeep.

    SEAT's highest volume line is the Ibiza: it sold 160K in 2015.
    Skoda's highest volume line is the Octavia: it sold 436K in 2016.

    Ram sold 544K units in 2016 in the U.S. only. And without a doubt the profit margins on the Ram are many times over that of the ibiza or Octavia. Cash cows are always appealing in a business case.

    Not only that but VW is a company that makes two different variants of certain cars, so they obviously see the value in catering to a specific market- the US, in this case- if the rewards are great enough.

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    59 minutes ago, Cmicasa the Great said:

    Personally I see no reason for Mary to even consider it once those facts are presented. Does GM need SRT?? Hell no. The Camaro alone does everything that the performance cars at Dodge do better. They have the capability, and frankly the necessity for scale to build an Omega or Alpha-L Impala that could put the Charger on the flatbed. Does GM need Ram??? Hell no. Come on. Does GM need Jeep??? Not even. GMC could easily take on Jeep I think if they wanted to. 

    GM(or anybody else) could always use the Jeep brand regardless of what product they could produce themselves. But I completely agree with everything else you said. They simply don't really make competitive products anymore. They have a few niche items like the Hellcats and SRT Grand Cherokee that everybody seems to love but outside of those the rest is old(save for the van, Cherokee & now Compass) or is a Fiat... Jeep is the only thing I would want to buy from them.

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    49 minutes ago, Stew said:

    And I am ok with that.  I tend to have a multi-national driveway haha.  2 Dodges, a Chevy, a Toyota, and a VW lol. 

    Yeah..  I kno. I'm a GM or Ford kinda guy since 1998. Before Chrysler hooked up with Daimler. Either way.. I am still looking at it from a business standpoint.. and business wise a GM/FCA hook-up would only spawn issues with the union at this point. On top of that the overlap if GM revitalized Dodge and Chrysler alone would be massive. If they were gonna do that they may as well of just reopened Pontiac. That would give em 500K sales instantly.. For the Jeep thing.. Again I call for a trim level based solely on the Canyon that emulates.. U guessed it.  the Hummer H3,  H3T and Hx concept 

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    One great thing is that the new Alfas are getting pretty rave reviews, basically replacing the Alpha based ATS as the mags favorite small luxury car.  unfortunately this doesn't guarantee sales, but when this platform makes it way to Dodge in will be a game changer, as much as the original LX cars were when they came out.  The new Turbo 4 is also getting rave reviews.  For a RWD 4 cylinder Alfa MT got 0-60 in 5.1 and a 1/4 mile of 13.6.  That is quicker than most of the competitions optional V6s and way quicker than their base 4 bangers.  The next resting place for this engine will be the new Wrangler, though I am sure it will be tuned for more low end torque where the Alfa version is tuned for mid/top end HP.  The Real MPG numbers were also pretty impressive at 38.1 on the highway, and I believe a 32 MPG average.  Things are going to get interesting over the next few years. 

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    • By William Maley
      Volkswagen's electric car offensive has already started in Europe with the ID.3. The next step is taking on the U.S. with the next electric vehicle, the ID.4 introduced today.
      The ID.4 looks very close to the concept that was first shown back in 2017 with such details as the VW logo smack dab in the middle with a light bar running across; wide air dam for the front,  flowing lines, and a full-length lightbar at the rear. In terms of size, the ID.4 is about 4.6 inches shorter, 1.9 inches lower, and 0.5 inches wider than the Tiguan sold in the U.S. No word on weight.
      For the interior, Volkswagen went minimalist. The driver faces 5.3-inch digital display and is able to change gear via a knob on the right side of bezel - similar to the BMW i3. Either a 10 or 12-inch touchscreen display handles the infotainment duties. Interior space is quite generous with 99.9 cubic feet of passenger space and 30.3 cubic feet of cargo space.
      At launch, the ID.4 will only be available with a single electric motor mounted on the rear axle providing 201 horsepower and 228 pound-feet of torque. An 82-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery pack provides the juice. Range is estimated at 250 miles. A dual-motor version with 302 horsepower and all-wheel drive will come out sometime next year.
      For charging, Volkswagen says that on a Level Two charger, the ID.4 takes around 7.5 hours from an empty battery. If you can find a DC fast charger, the recharge time drops significantly: Volkswagen claims that the battery can reach an 80% charge in 38 minutes.
      Pricing for the ID.4 will begin at $39,995 for the base Pro when it arrives at dealers at the end of the year. No mention on destination. But Volkswagen is planning to drop the price of the ID.4 once production begins at the Chattanooga Assembly Plant in Tennessee.
       
      Source: Volkswagen
      Press Release is on Page 2


      Volkswagen unveils the all-new 2021 ID.4 electric SUV
      Sep 23, 2020
      Reservations for the ID.4 start online today with 50-state launch in early 2021 MSRP starts at $39,995 for ID.4 Pro before potential $7,500 Federal tax credit Estimated 250 miles of range on ID.4 1st Edition Compact SUV will be available in rear-wheel drive 201-hp 82 kWh (launching first) and all-wheel-drive 302-hp 82 kWh configurations Three years of fast charging with Electrify America at no additional cost Modern design pairs with high-tech features, like DRIVE® advanced driver assistance technology and a smart infotainment system, using voice and touch Localized production in Chattanooga, starting in 2022 with anticipated MSRP around $35,000 Herndon, VA — Volkswagen of America, Inc. revealed the all-new ID.4 electric SUV today—the brand’s first long-range EV to be sold stateside. This compact SUV will offer all the best features of Volkswagen’s current lineup—hallmark driving dynamics, bold design, and advanced technology—along with long-range EV capability and three years of fast charging with Electrify America for no additional cost, to customers in the largest segment in the U.S., all with a price point aimed at the heart of the segment.
      “The ID.4 was engineered, loaded and priced to win the hearts of SUV owners who are simply ready to go electric—and fall in love with Volkswagen again,” said Scott Keogh, CEO, Volkswagen Group of America. “It drives like a GTI, it has the packaging of a Tiguan and the purpose of the Beetle. All the best things about VW in one package.”
      Powertrain & Charging
      The ID.4 electric compact SUV is based on the modular electric drive architecture (MEB). While it is the brand’s newest platform, it also represents a return to Volkswagen’s roots, with the electric motor located at the rear, just like the original Beetle.
      The heart of the ID.4 is a battery pack comprised of 288 pouch cells in 12 modules, positioned in the underbody to create a low center of gravity for optimal driving dynamics as well as extremely well-balanced weight distribution. It is housed in a lightweight aluminum structure that is bolted to the frame, helping to improve rigidity.
      At launch, the vehicle will be offered with an 82kWh (gross) battery and a rear-mounted AC permanent-magnet synchronous motor with 201 horsepower and 228 pound-feet of torque. Volkswagen estimates that the ID.4 82kWh RWD 1st Edition models will have a range of 250 miles with a full charge on the EPA cycle. A powerful, electric all-wheel-drive variant with 302 hp will follow later in 2021.
      The ID.4 also comes with three years of fast charging with Electrify America at no additional cost, helping to reduce range anxiety. The ID.4 can be charged with both alternating current (AC) and direct current (DC) fast-charging capability. The 11 kW onboard charger allows the ID.4 to charge the battery 33 miles in about one hour, and charges to full in around seven and a half hours at a home or public Level 2 charger. At a DC fast-charging station, with 125 kW charging, the ID.4 can go from five to 80 percent charged in about 38 minutes.
      Chassis
      The ID.4 is designed to be strong, yet agile. The chassis and body are made from steel. The front suspension is a strut-type with lower control arms, coil springs, telescopic dampers and anti-roll bar. In the rear, the ID.4 uses a multi-link rear axle with coil springs, telescopic dampers and an anti-roll bar. With 3.5 turns lock-to-lock and a stellar curb-to-curb turning radius of 33.5 feet, the ID.4 feels nimble, especially among other compact SUVs.
      A combination of brake types is used on ID.4. It features disc brakes on the front wheels and drum brakes on the rear—the difference being specific to electric vehicle needs. As EVs rely on regenerative braking, disc brakes on the rear can be less effective than drums after long periods of not being put to heavy use.
      Exterior
      Like the platform, the design of ID.4 represents a move towards the future with a nod to the past. At the front, the Volkswagen logo is able to be positioned centrally because there is no radiator grille, as it was on the Beetle. Large LED headlights flow backwards, hinting at the aerodynamic nature of the car, while a sculpted front bumper with large intake-like scoops and honeycomb accents give the car a powerful presence. Models fitted with the Statement package add an illuminated Volkswagen logo and an illuminated light line that stretches outward from it, creating a striking light signature.
      Front to back, clean, flowing lines alternate with crisp edges for a refined, yet futuristic look. A softly molded side section curves under the crisp rising shoulder line and flush illuminated door handles. The low greenhouse runs out into a strong C-pillar—a classic Volkswagen design feature—and into a long spoiler. The ID.4’s aerodynamically refined exterior helps it achieve an excellent drag coefficient of 0.28.
      The ID.4 sits squarely in the middle of the compact SUV segment, size-wise. It is 4.6 inches shorter than the Volkswagen Tiguan, at 180.5 inches, with a 0.9 inch shorter wheelbase at 108.9 inches. It is 1.9 inches lower than Tiguan at 64.4 inches high for the rear-wheel drive model, and 0.5 inches wider, at 72.9 inches.
      The ID.4 will available in six exterior colors—Glacier White Metallic, Mythos Black Metallic, Moonstone Grey, Scale Silver Metallic, Blue Dusk Metallic and King’s Red Metallic. All models come with a body color roof, black roof rails, and 19-inch aluminum alloy wheels. The Statement package adds a panoramic fixed-glass roof, premium LED projector headlights with Volkswagen’s Adaptive Front-lighting System (AFS) and power-folding side mirrors with puddle lamp signature, while the Gradient package (sold on top of the Statement package) upgrades to 20-inch wheels, black roof, and silver roof rails and accents.
      Interior
      Volkswagen’s first fully-electric SUV features ample space and a modern design. Passenger volume is similar to the Tiguan despite the overall smaller footprint, with 99.9 cubic feet total. Legroom is a comfortable 41.1 inches for front passengers and 37.6 inches in the rear seat. Cargo volume is 30.3 cubic feet behind the second row, and 64.2 cubic feet with the seats folded.
      The interior of the ID.4 mirrors the futuristic look of the exterior, with functionality almost completely controlled by touch or voice control. The 5.3-inch ID.Cockpit (digital driver display) replaces the traditional instrument cluster and is operated with touch-sensitive controls on the leather-wrapped multifunction heated steering wheel. Three tiles show the most important information, with the display for battery status and range underneath. The traditional gearshift is replaced by a large rocker switch on the right of the ID.Cockpit, and a control panel to the left of the steering wheel integrates the lighting functions, including automatic headlights.
      A 10-inch Discover Pro touch infotainment display is located in the middle of the dash panel, angled slightly towards the driver. This screen can be configured to driver preference, and manages the standard navigation system, all telematics, entertainment, driver-assistance systems and vehicle settings; it is upgraded to a 12-inch Discover Pro Max infotainment display with the Statement package. Menus can be moved using gesture control, simply swiping one’s hand in front of the screen. Sliders for volume and temperature adjustment are located on the inclined surface below the display.
      “Hello ID.” natural voice control is standard in the ID.4. The car follows the instructions spoken by the driver and passengers and is capable of understanding many commands from everyday language, such as “Hello ID., I’m cold” to turn up the heat.
      The ID.4 will feature ID. Light—a light strip below the windshield to support drivers in a host of situations with intuitive lighting effects in different colors and sound prompts. For example, ID. Light signals to the driver that the vehicle’s drive system is active and that the car has been unlocked or locked. It accentuates information issued by some of the driver-assistance and navigation systems and signals, both visually and acoustically, details like charge status indicator, braking prompts and incoming phone calls.
      The steering wheel, steering column, and the housings for the display and control panels in the doors are finished in Piano Black. Seats in the ID.4 are finished in black cloth on entry models and Lunar Gray or Galaxy Black leatherette on models with the Statement package. Entry ID.4 models feature six-way adjustable seats with power recline, while the Statement package adds 12-way power seats, with massage lumbar and memory, as well as 30-color ambient lighting.
      ID.4 offers a range of comfort and convenience features found throughout the rest of the brand’s lineup. Standard features include rain-sensing wipers, auto-dimming rearview mirror, dual-zone Climatronic® climate control, and KESSY® keyless access. To manage cold temperatures, the ID.4 features a standard heated steering wheel, heated side mirrors and washer nozzles, and, on all-wheel-drive models, a heated windshield. The Statement package adds SiriusXM® satellite radio with a three-month trial, an adjustable trunk floor, and a power tailgate with Easy Open & Close.
      To complete the high-tech package, ID.4 offers standard wireless mobile charging, wireless App-Connect, and Volkswagen Car-Net® with in-car WiFi capability when you subscribe to a data plan. Car-Net Hotspot allows passengers to access the internet with up to four connected devices simultaneously, including tablets, smartphones, laptops, gaming devices, and more—all at 4G LTE-enabled speed.
      Safety & Driver Assistance Technology
      To help protect occupants, the ID.4 provides a combination of both passive and active safety systems. It features six airbags as standard—front and side airbags for front passengers, and side curtain airbags for outboard seating positions. Additionally there are a number of electronic safety systems, such as an Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) and Electronic Stability Control (ESC).
      With regards to the battery, an extruded aluminum frame protects the battery system against damage in the event of a crash, and a replaceable aluminum underbody panel protects the battery against the road. Additionally, the battery is also disabled if the vehicle is involved in a serious accident.
      With the standard IQ.DRIVE® advanced driver assistance technology, all ID.4 models include Forward Collision Warning and Autonomous Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Monitoring (Front Assist); Blind Spot Monitor (Side Assist); Rear Traffic Alert; Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC); Lane Keeping System (Lane Assist); Travel Assist; and Emergency Assist. In addition to IQ.DRIVE features, the ID.4 includes Dynamic Road Sign Display; Park Distance Control; and High Beam Control (Light Assist).
      Pricing & Sales
      Pricing for the ID.4 starts at $39,995, for the rear-wheel-drive ID.4 Pro (available in the first quarter of 2021), before a potential Federal tax credit of up to $7,500 is applied. With those credits, the entry price of ID.4 is on par with the 2021 Tiguan SEL.  For highly qualified customers through Volkswagen Credit, the monthly lease payment for a 36-month lease with 10,000 miles a year, is $379 per month with $3,579 due at signing, excluding tax, title, license, options and dealer fees.
      Starting later in 2021, the ID.4 AWD Pro ($43,695) will be available. Both Pro models carry largely the same equipment, with AWD models putting out 302 hp, and adding a heated windshield and tow hitch. These models can be additionally outfitted with two packages—Statement ($4,500), and Gradient ($1,500), which is only offered with Statement.
      The ID.4 launches with a limited-run ID.4 1st Edition (MSRP $43,995). The 1st Edition models feature the same content as the Pro model, and Statement package (minus illuminated VW logo) and Gradient package come standard. These models also include unique features including accelerator and brake pedals with “play” and “pause” logos, the steering wheel and column, radio bezel and door island finished in Electric White, 1st Edition badging, black mirror caps, and a tow hitch.
      Volkswagen plans to offer the ID.4 electric vehicle across all 50 states, and throughout its network of more than 600 dealers. A reservation platform debuts today on VW.com, allowing customers to reserve an ID.4 before it hits dealer showrooms, with a fully refundable $100 reservation fee. As vehicle production starts, reservation holders will be invited to confirm their order with an additional fully refundable $400 vehicle deposit. From placing a reservation, to production and through delivery, the customer can see where they stand and when they can expect their ID. 4 to arrive at their preferred local VW dealer in a simple, transparent process. At that time, the customer can transact with their dealer and complete their purchase.
    • By David
      GM announced today their new family of EV motors, The Ultium Drive family.

      The Ultium Drive family is made up of five interchangeable drive units and three motors. This will help transition the current portfolio of auto's to fully electric lineup. Performance, scale, speed to market and manufacturing efficiencies will provide GM significant advantages over past EV auto's. GM is leading the way with industry class leading drive units that use an electric motor and single-speed transmissions to apply power best in class horsepower and torque. Ultium Drives will be more responsive than internal combustion motors with precision torque control of the motors and smooth performance. The design and development of the Ultium Drive modular architecture allows us to offer industry-leading torque with power density across a wide spectrum of different vehicles types.
      GM has applied their 25 years of EV experience in creating the Ultium Drive family with lighter and more efficient designs. The Ultium Drive family integrates the power electronics into the drive units assemblies allowing for a 50% reduction in electronics over previous auto's thus saving cost and packaging space while increasing capability by 25 percent.

      To Quote GM press release:
      “As with other propulsion systems that are complex, capital intensive and contain a great deal of intellectual property, we’re always better off making them ourselves,” said Adam Kwiatkowski, GM executive chief engineer, Global Electrical Propulsion. “GM’s full lineup of EVs should benefit from the simultaneous engineering of Ultium Drive. Our commitment to increased vertical integration is expected to bring additional cost efficiency to the performance equation.”
      Ultium-Drive-to-Help-Power-GMs-All-Electric-Future.mp4


      https://media.gm.com/media/us/en/gm/home.detail.html/content/Pages/news/us/en/2020/sep/0916-ultium-drive.html
    • By William Maley
      Future small cars from Fiat Chrysler Automobiles will not be using an updated version of their small car platform. Instead, they'll be underpinned by PSA Group's Common Modular Platform (CMP).
      Automotive News obtained a letter sent by FCA to suppliers in July stating "to immediately stop any research, development and tooling construction activities on future B-segment (small/subcompact) cars." These include the Fiat 500 and Jeep Renegade to give some context. The letter goes on to say it is moving to CMP and that vehicles based on this will be built at the company's Tychy, Poland plant - home to 500 and Lancia Yplilon production. 
      FCA had already put a stop, albeit a temporary one on developing parts for the five new small cars that were destined to use this platform due to COVID-19. There will be one model that will move forward on this orphaned platform - the upcoming 500 electric for Europe.
      As for CMP, this underpins the Peugeot 208 and 2008; Opel/Vauxhall Corsa, Mokka; and the DS3 Crossback. It allows for both combustion and electric powertrains.
      Moving to CMP is another step towards FCA and PSA Group's merger to become Stellantis. It is unclear whether or not the U.S. will see any of the new models that will use CMP from FCA's brands.
      Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)

      View full article
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