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    • By William Maley
      For the past few years, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Sergio Marchionne holds a conference with journalists and analysts at the Detroit Auto Show, taking various questions. According to Motor Trend, Marchionne revealed that more crossovers are on the way for Alfa Romeo, Chrysler, and Ferrari.
      Alfa's Three-Row Crossover: Sergio Marchionne confirmed that Alfa Romeo is working on a larger SUV to sit above the Stelvio. He says this model is very important for the brand. As we reported towards the end of December, the model would use a stretched version of the Stelvio's platform and possibly feature a mild-hybrid powertrain.
      Chrysler's Pacifica-based crossover: It seems the platform that underpins the Pacifica will be used for a long-promised crossover. The model was in the previous five-year plan for FCA, but was pushed back. The model will be in the next five-year plan (expected to be shown sometime later this year) and could go into production within the next 18 months.
      Ferrari SUV: Progress on Ferrari's upcoming SUV is moving quite quickly as Marchionne said it would be ready by the end of 2019 or early 2020. At the moment, the Italian automaker has mock-up bodies of the SUV, but nothing driveable.
      “I have seen the car when I was in Europe. It’s not finished. It’s going to be Ferrari. It will drive like a Ferrari or I’ll be taken to the shed. But it looks good,” said Marchionne.
      Other bits from Marchionne:
      When asked about a performance electric vehicle, Marchionne said, “Ferrari has looked at this forever, and if there is an electric supercar to be built, Ferrari will do it,” FCA hasn't "found an economic way to get this done” when asked if there was the chance of a midsize Ram pickup. Wrangler Pickup is expected to debut towards the end of 2019 Marchionne is planning to retire as FCA CEO next year The most pressing question asked during the session? Where does he buy his sweaters? Answer: Online. Source: Motor Trend
    • By William Maley
      For the past few years, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Sergio Marchionne holds a conference with journalists and analysts at the Detroit Auto Show, taking various questions. According to Motor Trend, Marchionne revealed that more crossovers are on the way for Alfa Romeo, Chrysler, and Ferrari.
      Alfa's Three-Row Crossover: Sergio Marchionne confirmed that Alfa Romeo is working on a larger SUV to sit above the Stelvio. He says this model is very important for the brand. As we reported towards the end of December, the model would use a stretched version of the Stelvio's platform and possibly feature a mild-hybrid powertrain.
      Chrysler's Pacifica-based crossover: It seems the platform that underpins the Pacifica will be used for a long-promised crossover. The model was in the previous five-year plan for FCA, but was pushed back. The model will be in the next five-year plan (expected to be shown sometime later this year) and could go into production within the next 18 months.
      Ferrari SUV: Progress on Ferrari's upcoming SUV is moving quite quickly as Marchionne said it would be ready by the end of 2019 or early 2020. At the moment, the Italian automaker has mock-up bodies of the SUV, but nothing driveable.
      “I have seen the car when I was in Europe. It’s not finished. It’s going to be Ferrari. It will drive like a Ferrari or I’ll be taken to the shed. But it looks good,” said Marchionne.
      Other bits from Marchionne:
      When asked about a performance electric vehicle, Marchionne said, “Ferrari has looked at this forever, and if there is an electric supercar to be built, Ferrari will do it,” FCA hasn't "found an economic way to get this done” when asked if there was the chance of a midsize Ram pickup. Wrangler Pickup is expected to debut towards the end of 2019 Marchionne is planning to retire as FCA CEO next year The most pressing question asked during the session? Where does he buy his sweaters? Answer: Online. Source: Motor Trend

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    • By William Maley
      Back in August, we reported that Volkswagen was planning to send the Passat GT concept shown at the 2016 LA Auto Show into production. The concept was Volkswagen's attempt at making the Passat become a bit more exciting with numerous cosmetic changes, a VR6 engine, and slight tweaks to the suspension. Next week at the Detroit Auto Show, Volkswagen will show off the production model.
      The exterior of the Passat GT matches up with the concept as there are a blacked-out honeycomb grille, red accent striping, blacked-out trim, 19-inch wheels, and a black decklid spoiler. Only four colors will be available on the GT; Pure White, Reflex Silver, Platinum Grey, and Deep Black. Inside, Volkswagen has added a fair amount of piano black and carbon fiber trim; two-tone leatherette upholstery for the seats, and aluminum GT-badged sills.
      Under the hood is the venerable 3.6L VR6 producing 280 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque - the same power figures as you'll find in the Passat V6 Premium. This is paired with a six-speed DSG. The GT will also feature a sport suspension that lowers the ride height. 
      Volkswagen will begin selling the Passat GT in the second half of 2018 with a base price of $29,940 (includes an $850 destination charge).
      Source: Volkswagen
      Press Release is on Page 2


      VOLKSWAGEN UNVEILS SPORTY 2018 PASSAT GT SPECIAL MODEL AT THE NORTH AMERICAN INTERNATIONAL AUTO SHOW
      GT combines the powerful VR6® engine with a lowered suspension and design enhancements to create the most aggressive looking Passat yet Limited-run model adds more than 20 sporty interior and exterior enhancements to Passat 3.6-liter VR6 engine is paired with a lowered suspension and sport exhaust Designed at Volkswagen’s Engineering and Planning Center in Chattanooga, Tenn. Pricing starts at $29,090 Detroit, Mich. – Today, Volkswagen of America, Inc., debuted the 2018 Passat GT special model at the North American International Auto Show. The production model, previewed by a concept at Automobility LA in 2016, was designed by the company’s North American engineering hub in Chattanooga, Tennessee, based on extensive feedback from U.S. customers and dealers.
      “The Passat GT illustrates how the North American Region can shape Volkswagen vehicles specifically for the U.S. market,” said Dr. Matthias Erb, Chief Engineering Officer, North American Region, Volkswagen. “Combining a local perspective with our global engineering expertise allows us to create vehicles that meet the needs and desires of customers here.”
      The Passat GT joins the Passat lineup for model year 2018 as a limited-run special model based off the R-Line® trim. It will be available in four exterior colors—Pure White, Reflex Silver, Platinum Grey, and Deep Black.
      Starting at the front, Passat GT differentiates itself from standard Passat models with standard LED headlights and LED Daytime Running Lights (DRLs). It borrows the R-Line® bumper and adds a honeycomb grille, GT badge, and a red accent line, reminiscent of the high-performance Golf GTI. A sport suspension gives it a more planted stance and cements the aggressive look.
      Moving around the side of the vehicle, the GT receives sporty touches from top to bottom. A black roof is complimented by black mirror caps and black window and door trim. Two-tone 19-inch “Tornado” wheels are accentuated with red-painted brake calipers, another nod to Volkswagen’s performance heritage.
      At the back, the Passat GT’s accents continue with a black spoiler and blackened LED taillights. The rear fascia also includes black bumper trim and a double exhaust with an acoustic package.
      Inside, the GT features piano black center console and vent trim, carbon fiber optic décor, black headliner, and aluminum GT-badged sills. Seating surfaces are black leatherette with Moonrock Gray inserts and contrast stitching. Standard interior comfort features include: a leather-wrapped steering wheel, 8-way power driver’s seat, heated front seats, dual-zone Climatronic® automatic climate control, and heated side mirrors.
      To keep passengers connected, the Passat GT features a Composition Media infotainment unit with 6.3-inch capacitive touchscreen display and standard Bluetooth® for compatible devices, Voice Control, and Volkswagen Car-Net® App-Connect technology that offers compatible smartphone integration with the three major platforms—Apple CarPlay™, Android Auto™ and MirrorLink®.  GT models feature two USB ports—one in the center console and one in the rear seat console. SiriusXM® Satellite Radio is standard and includes a three-month trial.
      The new Passat GT will be powered by Volkswagen’s 3.6-liter VR6® engine, making it a true sport sedan. Producing an impressive 280 horsepower at 6,200 rpm and 258 lb-ft of torque at 2,500 rpm with regular fuel, it offers power and luxury-class driving comfort with surprising fuel economy—EPA estimated fuel economy is 19 mpg city and 28 mpg highway. Shifting is handled by a standard six-speed DSG® automatic transmission with Tiptronic®, which features steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters.
      Every 2018 Passat model comes with the People First Warranty, America’s best bumper-to-bumper new vehicle limited warranty. The warranty provides coverage for six-years or 72,000-miles (whichever occurs first), and the warranty can be transferred to subsequent owners throughout the remainder of its duration.
      The 2018 Passat GT is expected to arrive at U.S. Volkswagen dealers in the second quarter of 2018. Pricing for the Passat GT starts at $29,090. The destination charge is an additional $850.
    • By William Maley
      Back in August, we reported that Volkswagen was planning to send the Passat GT concept shown at the 2016 LA Auto Show into production. The concept was Volkswagen's attempt at making the Passat become a bit more exciting with numerous cosmetic changes, a VR6 engine, and slight tweaks to the suspension. Next week at the Detroit Auto Show, Volkswagen will show off the production model.
      The exterior of the Passat GT matches up with the concept as there are a blacked-out honeycomb grille, red accent striping, blacked-out trim, 19-inch wheels, and a black decklid spoiler. Only four colors will be available on the GT; Pure White, Reflex Silver, Platinum Grey, and Deep Black. Inside, Volkswagen has added a fair amount of piano black and carbon fiber trim; two-tone leatherette upholstery for the seats, and aluminum GT-badged sills.
      Under the hood is the venerable 3.6L VR6 producing 280 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque - the same power figures as you'll find in the Passat V6 Premium. This is paired with a six-speed DSG. The GT will also feature a sport suspension that lowers the ride height. 
      Volkswagen will begin selling the Passat GT in the second half of 2018 with a base price of $29,940 (includes an $850 destination charge).
      Source: Volkswagen
      Press Release is on Page 2


      VOLKSWAGEN UNVEILS SPORTY 2018 PASSAT GT SPECIAL MODEL AT THE NORTH AMERICAN INTERNATIONAL AUTO SHOW
      GT combines the powerful VR6® engine with a lowered suspension and design enhancements to create the most aggressive looking Passat yet Limited-run model adds more than 20 sporty interior and exterior enhancements to Passat 3.6-liter VR6 engine is paired with a lowered suspension and sport exhaust Designed at Volkswagen’s Engineering and Planning Center in Chattanooga, Tenn. Pricing starts at $29,090 Detroit, Mich. – Today, Volkswagen of America, Inc., debuted the 2018 Passat GT special model at the North American International Auto Show. The production model, previewed by a concept at Automobility LA in 2016, was designed by the company’s North American engineering hub in Chattanooga, Tennessee, based on extensive feedback from U.S. customers and dealers.
      “The Passat GT illustrates how the North American Region can shape Volkswagen vehicles specifically for the U.S. market,” said Dr. Matthias Erb, Chief Engineering Officer, North American Region, Volkswagen. “Combining a local perspective with our global engineering expertise allows us to create vehicles that meet the needs and desires of customers here.”
      The Passat GT joins the Passat lineup for model year 2018 as a limited-run special model based off the R-Line® trim. It will be available in four exterior colors—Pure White, Reflex Silver, Platinum Grey, and Deep Black.
      Starting at the front, Passat GT differentiates itself from standard Passat models with standard LED headlights and LED Daytime Running Lights (DRLs). It borrows the R-Line® bumper and adds a honeycomb grille, GT badge, and a red accent line, reminiscent of the high-performance Golf GTI. A sport suspension gives it a more planted stance and cements the aggressive look.
      Moving around the side of the vehicle, the GT receives sporty touches from top to bottom. A black roof is complimented by black mirror caps and black window and door trim. Two-tone 19-inch “Tornado” wheels are accentuated with red-painted brake calipers, another nod to Volkswagen’s performance heritage.
      At the back, the Passat GT’s accents continue with a black spoiler and blackened LED taillights. The rear fascia also includes black bumper trim and a double exhaust with an acoustic package.
      Inside, the GT features piano black center console and vent trim, carbon fiber optic décor, black headliner, and aluminum GT-badged sills. Seating surfaces are black leatherette with Moonrock Gray inserts and contrast stitching. Standard interior comfort features include: a leather-wrapped steering wheel, 8-way power driver’s seat, heated front seats, dual-zone Climatronic® automatic climate control, and heated side mirrors.
      To keep passengers connected, the Passat GT features a Composition Media infotainment unit with 6.3-inch capacitive touchscreen display and standard Bluetooth® for compatible devices, Voice Control, and Volkswagen Car-Net® App-Connect technology that offers compatible smartphone integration with the three major platforms—Apple CarPlay™, Android Auto™ and MirrorLink®.  GT models feature two USB ports—one in the center console and one in the rear seat console. SiriusXM® Satellite Radio is standard and includes a three-month trial.
      The new Passat GT will be powered by Volkswagen’s 3.6-liter VR6® engine, making it a true sport sedan. Producing an impressive 280 horsepower at 6,200 rpm and 258 lb-ft of torque at 2,500 rpm with regular fuel, it offers power and luxury-class driving comfort with surprising fuel economy—EPA estimated fuel economy is 19 mpg city and 28 mpg highway. Shifting is handled by a standard six-speed DSG® automatic transmission with Tiptronic®, which features steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters.
      Every 2018 Passat model comes with the People First Warranty, America’s best bumper-to-bumper new vehicle limited warranty. The warranty provides coverage for six-years or 72,000-miles (whichever occurs first), and the warranty can be transferred to subsequent owners throughout the remainder of its duration.
      The 2018 Passat GT is expected to arrive at U.S. Volkswagen dealers in the second quarter of 2018. Pricing for the Passat GT starts at $29,090. The destination charge is an additional $850.

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      Many of us thought that Ford's showing at the Detroit Auto Show would be the upcoming Ranger. But it seems the blue oval has other plans.
      First up, Ford is teasing a new ST model. In a video dropped on various social media outlets, the former Stig, Ben Collins is seen walking past various performance models including the GT and Raptor. He then stops at a mysterious ST model. Guesses about the new ST range from the new Focus ST to possibly a crossover - the EcoSport and Edge being prime contenders.
      But that's not all. Automotive News has learned that Ford will be debuting a new version of Mustang Bullitt. Rumors about this have been going around since last year when spy shots caught a dark green Mustang taking part in a commercial being filmed in Chicago.
      "We don’t have any Mustang news to share today but we love the interest in America’s favorite muscle car," said Ford spokesman Mike Levine when asked about the Bullitt.
      Source: Ford, Automotive News (Subscription Required)
       
       

      View full article
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