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Found 22 results

  1. Carlos Ghosn has been sitting in a Japanese jail cell since mid-November on charges financial violations, including under-reporting compensation. It is unclear what awaits him in the coming months, but he believes that his downfall is due the result of "plot and treason" by Nissan executives opposed to plans of a merger between Nissan and Renault. Today, the Nikkei Asian Review published an exclusive interview with Ghosn from the detention center he is currently being held at. This is quite surprising as Ghosn has been "barred from meeting with his family or Nissan employees". During the short interview (about 20 minutes), Ghosn dismissed various accusations ranging from his 19-year reign at Nissan being a "dictatorship," to the numerous financial charges he is currently facing. One of those charges deals with $14.7 million in payments to a company run by Saudi businessman Khaled al-Juffali. Ghosn said "the executive in charge of the region signed [the approval]," and the funds came from Ghosn's "CEO reserve," a pot of money that he was free to decide how to spend. "[Have I] done [something] inappropriate? I am not a lawyer, I don't know the interpretation of [such] facts," Ghosn said. "These are known by everybody, why didn't they tell me?" Ghosn also talked about the plans for the deeper integration of Nissan, Renault, and Mitsubishi. The plan was to have the three closely integrated to ensure "autonomy under one holding company." Ghosn also revealed that he wanted to have Mitsubishi Motors CEO Osamu Masuko in the talks about the integration, but Nissan CEO Hiroto Saikawa wanted to keep the talks "one-on-one". Allies of Ghosn believed some Nissan executives were worried that Ghosn's power could increase under the integration, prompting them to work with Tokyo prosecutors. A Nissan spokesman told Bloomberg that Saikawa previously refuted the notion of a coup. “Nissan’s investigation uncovered substantial and convincing evidence of misconduct,” the company said in a statement. Source: Nikkei Asian Review, Bloomberg View full article
  2. Carlos Ghosn has been sitting in a Japanese jail cell since mid-November on charges financial violations, including under-reporting compensation. It is unclear what awaits him in the coming months, but he believes that his downfall is due the result of "plot and treason" by Nissan executives opposed to plans of a merger between Nissan and Renault. Today, the Nikkei Asian Review published an exclusive interview with Ghosn from the detention center he is currently being held at. This is quite surprising as Ghosn has been "barred from meeting with his family or Nissan employees". During the short interview (about 20 minutes), Ghosn dismissed various accusations ranging from his 19-year reign at Nissan being a "dictatorship," to the numerous financial charges he is currently facing. One of those charges deals with $14.7 million in payments to a company run by Saudi businessman Khaled al-Juffali. Ghosn said "the executive in charge of the region signed [the approval]," and the funds came from Ghosn's "CEO reserve," a pot of money that he was free to decide how to spend. "[Have I] done [something] inappropriate? I am not a lawyer, I don't know the interpretation of [such] facts," Ghosn said. "These are known by everybody, why didn't they tell me?" Ghosn also talked about the plans for the deeper integration of Nissan, Renault, and Mitsubishi. The plan was to have the three closely integrated to ensure "autonomy under one holding company." Ghosn also revealed that he wanted to have Mitsubishi Motors CEO Osamu Masuko in the talks about the integration, but Nissan CEO Hiroto Saikawa wanted to keep the talks "one-on-one". Allies of Ghosn believed some Nissan executives were worried that Ghosn's power could increase under the integration, prompting them to work with Tokyo prosecutors. A Nissan spokesman told Bloomberg that Saikawa previously refuted the notion of a coup. “Nissan’s investigation uncovered substantial and convincing evidence of misconduct,” the company said in a statement. Source: Nikkei Asian Review, Bloomberg
  3. It is no secret that Bentley is working on an electric vehicle. What has been unclear is when said vehicle is expected to launch. Recently, Automotive News Europe had a sit-down with Bentley CEO Adrian Hallmark where he revealed that electric cars are seen "as another growth opportunity in a five- to 10-year period." Why the long period? "The problem is, with the size of our vehicles and the frontal area we push through, current battery-power density limits the size of the car with a credible driving range. The Jaguar I-Pace is the perfect-size car for the battery technology, but it’s too small for us. It’s all driven by power density of the battery, but there’s nothing industrialized in the supply chain before 2023-2024-2025. Only then does it open up the size of the vehicle and the category you can make a credible battery-powered car," said Hallmark. Hallmark wouldn't say what Bentley's full-electric vehicle would look like, but past rumors point to the possibility of the Mulsanne replacement of going full EV. Bentley knows that it needs an EV sooner or later. Hallmark said 40 percent of Bentley customers would consider buying an electric vehicle. Also, a set of possible Bentley customers, "the upper liberals and the post-moderns" are trending towards Porsche and Tesla models. Source: Automotive News Europe (Subscription Required) View full article
  4. It is no secret that Bentley is working on an electric vehicle. What has been unclear is when said vehicle is expected to launch. Recently, Automotive News Europe had a sit-down with Bentley CEO Adrian Hallmark where he revealed that electric cars are seen "as another growth opportunity in a five- to 10-year period." Why the long period? "The problem is, with the size of our vehicles and the frontal area we push through, current battery-power density limits the size of the car with a credible driving range. The Jaguar I-Pace is the perfect-size car for the battery technology, but it’s too small for us. It’s all driven by power density of the battery, but there’s nothing industrialized in the supply chain before 2023-2024-2025. Only then does it open up the size of the vehicle and the category you can make a credible battery-powered car," said Hallmark. Hallmark wouldn't say what Bentley's full-electric vehicle would look like, but past rumors point to the possibility of the Mulsanne replacement of going full EV. Bentley knows that it needs an EV sooner or later. Hallmark said 40 percent of Bentley customers would consider buying an electric vehicle. Also, a set of possible Bentley customers, "the upper liberals and the post-moderns" are trending towards Porsche and Tesla models. Source: Automotive News Europe (Subscription Required)
  5. The talk about whether any of the major auto shows still matter has been going on for few years as a number of automakers pulling out has been increasing. But what you haven't heard is a major head of automaker questioning them, until now. “Motor shows are dead,” said Herbert Diess, chairman of the Volkswagen Group. “They are a product of the 1960s and they are not as relevant anymore. They’re not delivering what we want and they’re not delivering what car buyers want.” The Detroit Auto show is a poster child of this as automakers in the past few years have been pulling out. Reasons are numerous: Automakers are holding their own events as they can control the message and not fight with others for attention in the spotlight. It's also quite expensive as an automaker needs to design the exhibit, bring in labor to build and tear down, getting the vehicles to the show, and much more. Diess believes the likes of the Goodwood Festival of Speed could be one way for the auto show to evolve. “People need to see more interaction with the product. They expect it. Those days of relying on tradition are gone. It’s events like the Goodwood Festival of Speed that are showing us the modern way to show cars to people.” Organizers of the Detroit Auto Show are taking note. Earlier this week, organizers announced the show would be moving to June in 2020 and feature such things as rides and drives of new vehicles. Source: Motoring
  6. The talk about whether any of the major auto shows still matter has been going on for few years as a number of automakers pulling out has been increasing. But what you haven't heard is a major head of automaker questioning them, until now. “Motor shows are dead,” said Herbert Diess, chairman of the Volkswagen Group. “They are a product of the 1960s and they are not as relevant anymore. They’re not delivering what we want and they’re not delivering what car buyers want.” The Detroit Auto show is a poster child of this as automakers in the past few years have been pulling out. Reasons are numerous: Automakers are holding their own events as they can control the message and not fight with others for attention in the spotlight. It's also quite expensive as an automaker needs to design the exhibit, bring in labor to build and tear down, getting the vehicles to the show, and much more. Diess believes the likes of the Goodwood Festival of Speed could be one way for the auto show to evolve. “People need to see more interaction with the product. They expect it. Those days of relying on tradition are gone. It’s events like the Goodwood Festival of Speed that are showing us the modern way to show cars to people.” Organizers of the Detroit Auto Show are taking note. Earlier this week, organizers announced the show would be moving to June in 2020 and feature such things as rides and drives of new vehicles. Source: Motoring View full article
  7. Audi of America President Scott Keogh has been pushing the mothership to bring over more of the high-performance RS models to the U.S. His efforts have been paying off as we currently have the TT RS, RS 3 sedan, RS 7 sportback, and soon the RS 5 coupe. In an interview with Roadshow, Keogh said two more RS models are incoming. The first is the RS 5 Sportback. Like the coupe, the sportback will get a biturbo 2.9L V6 with 444 horsepower and 443 pound-feet of torque. This is paired with an eight-speed automatic and quattro all-wheel drive. The second model is a surprise. "We have one other surprise we're working on, but I'll hold that one. There's a cool European model that we haven't brought in yet, and it has been the number 1 car on my list. So maybe we'll get it," said Keogh. A number of people believe that mystery model is the RS 4 Avant which has the same powertrain as the RS 5. We're not sure about this considering how allergic Americans are to wagons, unless Audi somehow creates a RS 4 Allroad. There could also be a new RS 6 Avant or even an RS version of the Q5. Source: Roadshow on YouTube View full article
  8. Audi of America President Scott Keogh has been pushing the mothership to bring over more of the high-performance RS models to the U.S. His efforts have been paying off as we currently have the TT RS, RS 3 sedan, RS 7 sportback, and soon the RS 5 coupe. In an interview with Roadshow, Keogh said two more RS models are incoming. The first is the RS 5 Sportback. Like the coupe, the sportback will get a biturbo 2.9L V6 with 444 horsepower and 443 pound-feet of torque. This is paired with an eight-speed automatic and quattro all-wheel drive. The second model is a surprise. "We have one other surprise we're working on, but I'll hold that one. There's a cool European model that we haven't brought in yet, and it has been the number 1 car on my list. So maybe we'll get it," said Keogh. A number of people believe that mystery model is the RS 4 Avant which has the same powertrain as the RS 5. We're not sure about this considering how allergic Americans are to wagons, unless Audi somehow creates a RS 4 Allroad. There could also be a new RS 6 Avant or even an RS version of the Q5. Source: Roadshow on YouTube
  9. It was an exciting day when Ford announced that the Ranger and Bronco would be coming back. But then disappointment arrived as an alleged Ford employee said on Reddit that the Bronco would be a slightly re-worked Everest SUV (cue sad trombone). A Ford executive has cleared the air somewhat on the Bronco, and it is good news. Ford's Chief Technical Officer Raj Nair told Autoline in an interview that while the Bronco would be based on the Ranger/Everest platform, it would be its own vehicle. “No, it’s a separate vehicle. It will be an incremental vehicle from the Everest. The Everest kind of serves a lot of off-road capability; maybe the space of the Explorer serves here in the U.S., but with a body-on-frame construction with a lot more off-road capability for the rest of the world. This Bronco is completely unique from that Everest. It is body-on-frame and so again, focusing on that off-road capability.” Nair also revealed that the Bronco would be somewhere in between the small Bronco (1966-1977) and big Bronco (1992-1996). “This new Bronco will be based off the Ranger platform and so it’s going to be a similarly sized vehicle to what you see in the Ranger. Now, for our American customers who have never seen that global Ranger, it’s a bit bigger than the Ranger we used to have here in the U.S., so I would say it’s kind of in-between in what you saw with that really big Bronco and then the smaller Bronco,” said Nair. So everyone, take a deep breath. It seems that it is going to be ok. Source: Autoline
  10. It was an exciting day when Ford announced that the Ranger and Bronco would be coming back. But then disappointment arrived as an alleged Ford employee said on Reddit that the Bronco would be a slightly re-worked Everest SUV (cue sad trombone). A Ford executive has cleared the air somewhat on the Bronco, and it is good news. Ford's Chief Technical Officer Raj Nair told Autoline in an interview that while the Bronco would be based on the Ranger/Everest platform, it would be its own vehicle. “No, it’s a separate vehicle. It will be an incremental vehicle from the Everest. The Everest kind of serves a lot of off-road capability; maybe the space of the Explorer serves here in the U.S., but with a body-on-frame construction with a lot more off-road capability for the rest of the world. This Bronco is completely unique from that Everest. It is body-on-frame and so again, focusing on that off-road capability.” Nair also revealed that the Bronco would be somewhere in between the small Bronco (1966-1977) and big Bronco (1992-1996). “This new Bronco will be based off the Ranger platform and so it’s going to be a similarly sized vehicle to what you see in the Ranger. Now, for our American customers who have never seen that global Ranger, it’s a bit bigger than the Ranger we used to have here in the U.S., so I would say it’s kind of in-between in what you saw with that really big Bronco and then the smaller Bronco,” said Nair. So everyone, take a deep breath. It seems that it is going to be ok. Source: Autoline View full article
  11. A hybrid full-size pickup is on the horizon and will be wearing a blue oval badge. In an interview with NPR's All Things Considered, Ford CEO Mark Fields confirmed that a hybrid F-150 is coming. "Well, we do have plans to have a rear-wheel drive hybrid truck but the end of the decade. So yes, we're working on electrified F-series, and it's really around a conventional hybrid," said Fields. This follows comments made by Ford's development chief, Raj Nair last year when he said a rear-drive hybrid truck would come out in 2020. Nair also mentioned that hybrid SUVs are also on the way. Before you think this is the result of Ford and Toyota's partnership to do hybrid pickups in 2010, it isn't. In 2013, the two automakers dissolved their partnership and went their separate ways. Source: NPR
  12. A hybrid full-size pickup is on the horizon and will be wearing a blue oval badge. In an interview with NPR's All Things Considered, Ford CEO Mark Fields confirmed that a hybrid F-150 is coming. "Well, we do have plans to have a rear-wheel drive hybrid truck but the end of the decade. So yes, we're working on electrified F-series, and it's really around a conventional hybrid," said Fields. This follows comments made by Ford's development chief, Raj Nair last year when he said a rear-drive hybrid truck would come out in 2020. Nair also mentioned that hybrid SUVs are also on the way. Before you think this is the result of Ford and Toyota's partnership to do hybrid pickups in 2010, it isn't. In 2013, the two automakers dissolved their partnership and went their separate ways. Source: NPR View full article
  13. Whenever you get the chance to sit down and chat with General Motors' executive vice president Mark Reuss, you know that some interesting tidbits will come out of it. Case in point is a piece published by Car and Driver where Reuss shoots the breeze on Cadillac and Chevrolet. What are GM's priorities at the moment? Reuss explains it like this: “to grow Cadillac, and get Chevrolet back in the car game, really feed Buick and GMC, get Opel straightened around, and get our international operations profitable.” Now New York put Cadillac in the spotlight with the introduction of the CT6. Reuss explained that CT6 isn't the brand's flagship and “there’s a car above this.” Car and Driver asked about the possibility of a sports car for Cadillac. Reuss squashed that idea. “The brand’s got to be ready to do something like that. Right now it’s not. I don’t think doing a car like that is going to change the brand image today, either." Reuss was also adamant about where the luxury brand currently stands. "Year one. I think we’re talking to ourselves if we think that we’re on the consideration list of people, in volume, in the luxury segment. So let’s get real about it, and keep hammering, and keep building great cars and trucks, and people start to notice and want to try something different, and that’s our opportunity. There’s a whole generation out there whose moms and dads drove BMWs and Audis and Mercedes, and they didn’t drive Cadillacs. We need to get on that consideration list with great cars and trucks. In that sense, from a product-development standpoint, we’re more than year one. From a brand standpoint, we’re year one.” As for Chevrolet, Reuss revealed the fate the long-rumored Chevrolet Code 130R: It isn't happening. “We looked at that and we looked at our competitors who were doing things like that and what the market told us was that was not a good idea. The volumes of those things were terrible." Source: Car and Driver
  14. Whenever you get the chance to sit down and chat with General Motors' executive vice president Mark Reuss, you know that some interesting tidbits will come out of it. Case in point is a piece published by Car and Driver where Reuss shoots the breeze on Cadillac and Chevrolet. What are GM's priorities at the moment? Reuss explains it like this: “to grow Cadillac, and get Chevrolet back in the car game, really feed Buick and GMC, get Opel straightened around, and get our international operations profitable.” Now New York put Cadillac in the spotlight with the introduction of the CT6. Reuss explained that CT6 isn't the brand's flagship and “there’s a car above this.” Car and Driver asked about the possibility of a sports car for Cadillac. Reuss squashed that idea. “The brand’s got to be ready to do something like that. Right now it’s not. I don’t think doing a car like that is going to change the brand image today, either." Reuss was also adamant about where the luxury brand currently stands. "Year one. I think we’re talking to ourselves if we think that we’re on the consideration list of people, in volume, in the luxury segment. So let’s get real about it, and keep hammering, and keep building great cars and trucks, and people start to notice and want to try something different, and that’s our opportunity. There’s a whole generation out there whose moms and dads drove BMWs and Audis and Mercedes, and they didn’t drive Cadillacs. We need to get on that consideration list with great cars and trucks. In that sense, from a product-development standpoint, we’re more than year one. From a brand standpoint, we’re year one.” As for Chevrolet, Reuss revealed the fate the long-rumored Chevrolet Code 130R: It isn't happening. “We looked at that and we looked at our competitors who were doing things like that and what the market told us was that was not a good idea. The volumes of those things were terrible." Source: Car and Driver View full article
  15. It seems like only yesterday when the announcement of a partnership between Alfa Romeo and Mazda to build a new Spyder using the next-generation MX-5 Miata. But earlier this year, reports started to flow about how the partnership was going up in smoke. Alfa was reportedly going to go on its own for the Spyder, while Abarth would get the roadster that was originally going to go to Alfa. We now have confirmation on both counts. Car Magazine recently interviewed Harold Wester, brand chief for both Alfa Romeo and Maserati. Wester confirmed that Alfa Romeo Spyder would not be based on the Mazda MX-5. "As far as the Spider goes, the final version is of course no longer the two-seater FCA [Fiat Chrysler Automobile] codeveloped with Mazda but a derivative of project Giorgio," said Wester. Project Giorgio is the codename for the new rear-wheel drive platform that will underpin the new Spyder, along with other Alfa models in the pipeline. Wester also confirmed that the work done by Alfa and Mazda won't go to waste. "The Far East import will probably find a new home with Fiat-Abarth." Source: Car Magazine View full article
  16. It seems like only yesterday when the announcement of a partnership between Alfa Romeo and Mazda to build a new Spyder using the next-generation MX-5 Miata. But earlier this year, reports started to flow about how the partnership was going up in smoke. Alfa was reportedly going to go on its own for the Spyder, while Abarth would get the roadster that was originally going to go to Alfa. We now have confirmation on both counts. Car Magazine recently interviewed Harold Wester, brand chief for both Alfa Romeo and Maserati. Wester confirmed that Alfa Romeo Spyder would not be based on the Mazda MX-5. "As far as the Spider goes, the final version is of course no longer the two-seater FCA [Fiat Chrysler Automobile] codeveloped with Mazda but a derivative of project Giorgio," said Wester. Project Giorgio is the codename for the new rear-wheel drive platform that will underpin the new Spyder, along with other Alfa models in the pipeline. Wester also confirmed that the work done by Alfa and Mazda won't go to waste. "The Far East import will probably find a new home with Fiat-Abarth." Source: Car Magazine
  17. Compact crossovers are currently the hot thing in the automotive marketplace, and it won't be too long before subcompact crossovers become the next big thing. We've been hearing for the past year or so that Mazda is working on a subcompact crossover possibly named the CX-3. Now a Mazda executive has given a hint that its coming very soon. “There’s opportunity there [in the compact SUV segment], absolutely. We’ve made it clear that it’s an area we’d like to be represented in," said Mazda Australia boss Martin Benders to The Motor Report. When asked if the upcoming model was still a ways away, Benders responded, “Oh, it’s not that far away”. The CX-3 is expected to use the new Mazda2 as a base and have styling similar to the CX-5. Source: The Motor Report William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. View full article
  18. Compact crossovers are currently the hot thing in the automotive marketplace, and it won't be too long before subcompact crossovers become the next big thing. We've been hearing for the past year or so that Mazda is working on a subcompact crossover possibly named the CX-3. Now a Mazda executive has given a hint that its coming very soon. “There’s opportunity there [in the compact SUV segment], absolutely. We’ve made it clear that it’s an area we’d like to be represented in," said Mazda Australia boss Martin Benders to The Motor Report. When asked if the upcoming model was still a ways away, Benders responded, “Oh, it’s not that far away”. The CX-3 is expected to use the new Mazda2 as a base and have styling similar to the CX-5. Source: The Motor Report William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
  19. The past few years have seen truck manufacturers engage in a war of fuel economy numbers. Using new engines and fuel saving technologies, manufacturers are using fuel economy as a big selling point. Speaking with Automotive News, Ram brand director Bob Hegbloom says there is a big prize that all truck companies are aiming for: 30 MPG. "The first manufacturer that gets to 30 mpg wins," said Hegbloom. "We are seeing that with our 28 mpg EcoDiesel as well as the 25 mpg on the Pentastar V-6 model that fuel economy is so important. We are seeing it in the share gains and the growth for the brand. That's a number that is out there, but I don't think you can stop there." Hegbloom didn't comment when or how Ram would achieve the 30 MPG, but did say, "I just want to have continuous improvement and to keep gaining every day. We sat still in the past and it doesn't lead to a great place. We are focused on constant improvement every single day." Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. View full article
  20. The past few years have seen truck manufacturers engage in a war of fuel economy numbers. Using new engines and fuel saving technologies, manufacturers are using fuel economy as a big selling point. Speaking with Automotive News, Ram brand director Bob Hegbloom says there is a big prize that all truck companies are aiming for: 30 MPG. "The first manufacturer that gets to 30 mpg wins," said Hegbloom. "We are seeing that with our 28 mpg EcoDiesel as well as the 25 mpg on the Pentastar V-6 model that fuel economy is so important. We are seeing it in the share gains and the growth for the brand. That's a number that is out there, but I don't think you can stop there." Hegbloom didn't comment when or how Ram would achieve the 30 MPG, but did say, "I just want to have continuous improvement and to keep gaining every day. We sat still in the past and it doesn't lead to a great place. We are focused on constant improvement every single day." Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
  21. The long-hinted entry-level Tesla offering, the Model E could be shown earlier than anyone expected. AutoBild had the chance to interview Tesla's Chief Designer, Franz von Holzhausen. Holzhausen revealed that the Model E could be shown at the 2015 Detroit Auto Show, a full year ahead than what everyone was expecting. Tesla CEO Elon Musk has been hinting at the Model E for awhile, saying that it would be the size of a BMW 3-Series, have a range of 200 Miles, and cost somewhere around $30,000 (after federal EV tax credits). Holzhausen also revealed that work on the Tesla's next model, the seven-seat Model X crossover was coming to close. Source: AutoBild William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. View full article
  22. The long-hinted entry-level Tesla offering, the Model E could be shown earlier than anyone expected. AutoBild had the chance to interview Tesla's Chief Designer, Franz von Holzhausen. Holzhausen revealed that the Model E could be shown at the 2015 Detroit Auto Show, a full year ahead than what everyone was expecting. Tesla CEO Elon Musk has been hinting at the Model E for awhile, saying that it would be the size of a BMW 3-Series, have a range of 200 Miles, and cost somewhere around $30,000 (after federal EV tax credits). Holzhausen also revealed that work on the Tesla's next model, the seven-seat Model X crossover was coming to close. Source: AutoBild William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.

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