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Found 12 results

  1. The recently announced alliance between Ford and Volkswagen will not bring any benefits to North America at the beginning. Both companies said that the partnership will focus on Africa, Europe, and South America beginning with commercial vans and the next-generation Ranger/Amarok pickup. Down the road, both Ford and Volkswagen said there could be a potential product for the U.S. While Ford is keeping quiet on what that product could be, Volkswagen CEO Herbert Diess said that a commercial vehicle being jointly developed by the two could come over. "Some of those, yes, but it's not yet decided which vehicle comes to America," said Diess. Volkswagen's commercial vehicle lineup is extensive with vans ranging in size from the compact Caddy (Transit Connect-sized) to the large Crafter (about Transit-sized). We would guess something like the Caddy and possibly the Transporter coming to the U.S. in the next few years. Of course, there is talk about a pickup truck - something dealers have been asking for some time. While there is a very slim chance of the Amarok coming, the Atlas Tanoak concept shown at New York last year seems to have a better chance. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), 2
  2. There was a number of people who were disappointed at the news that Ford wouldn't be bringing over the Ranger Raptor to the U.S. When you take into consideration that the current-generation model has been sold around the world since 2011, Ford decided it was too late in the lifecycle of the model to design a Raptor variant to meet various regulations. But there is the chance of the next-generation Ranger Raptor coming to the U.S. Road & Track has done some sleuthing into social media profiles for various Ford engineers and has uncovered some interesting information. The current Ranger has an internal project code of P375 and is expected to stick around for a few more years. The next-generation model, due in 2022, uses the code of P703. It is expected that the next-generation Ranger will be sharing a number of parts with the Bronco. How does the Raptor fit into this picture? In a recently posted project description, it mentions a chassis engineer has been working on a Ranger Raptor with the P703 code being built with North America in mind. The engineer has also worked on the current version of the Ranger (known as P375N) and the Ranger Raptor. Doing some more digging and speaking to some sources at Ford, the new Ranger Raptor is likely to be called “Project Redback” internally. Project Redback was the project name for the current Ranger Raptor. Road & Track doesn't have any information the powertrain, but speculates that North America would likely get a gas engine. Other markets get a diesel engine for the Raptor. Source: Road & Track
  3. Care By Volvo was one of the first new car subscription services to launch. It offered a buyer an XC40 with a yearly allowance of 15,000 miles; maintenance, insurance, and a concierge service for either $600 or $700 per month for 24 months. But the service had some hiccups with various issues dealing with paperwork and not hearing back from dealers. "The process was very, very stretched. We have learned that the process needs to be smoother, and also the process related to insurance and all the rules in all the states in this beautiful country ... we have learned a lot," said Volvo's North American CEO, Anders Gustafsson to Roadshow. A key example is having a larger stockpile of vehicles allocated for subscribers. The entire Care by Volvo allotment of XC40s sold out in four months, causing Volvo to push deliveries of new XC40s through the service till next year. Gustafsson admits Care By Volvo is "far away from where we would like to be." But he believes the S60, the next vehicle to be offered through the service will be much smoother. Roadshow also asked Gustafsson what's next for Care By Volvo. He revealed that it could be used cars. A used-car subscription service "is probably 50 percent of the questions that we receive from our customers and from our retailers," said Gustafsson. As for when something like this could appear, Gustafsson said it could happen within a year. Source: Roadshow
  4. For a number of years, people have been saying the biggest problem with Volkswagen is they haven't “figured out the American market yet.” Even the automaker admits that it's the reason that its market share has dropped. Volkswagen has tried again and again to make some inroads into the market to no avail. But the German automaker is giving it another go. Automotive News had the chance to do a deep dive into Volkswagen's new plan by speaking with Volkswagen Group of America CEO Hinrich Woebcken. His plan involves turning this division into an American car company - in spirit. It should be noted that Woebcken came to the U.S. as an exchange student in the seventies, something he credits for getting him interested in industrial engineering. "I owe America, I owe Rochester, N.Y., and I owe this metal shop for how I basically went to start my adult life. We want to get more Americanized not only in our product but in our business. It's not that we're giving up on the genes of the Volkswagen brand. Volkswagens are Volkswagens. But what we recognized over the years is ... that we were too much a small-car company, too much a sedan company," said Woebcken. This plan was sparked only a couple months into his position as Volkswagen America's CEO. During a meeting with dealers, Woebcken was introducing the three-row crossover that is now known as the Atlas. But at the time of the meeting, it was wearing the Teramont name. Dealers hated the name and wanted to have Atlas as the name. Woebcken agreed to talk with his bosses about changing the name. "Everybody said there was no chance to convince headquarters to change the name of a regional product. It's not a big thing, I know, but it's a symbolic statement that Wolfsburg said, 'OK, the region is independent. They want to make sure the brand is getting successful in this country. Let them decide for themselves the name,' " explained Woebcken. "It was, in terms of Volkswagen, a pretty big thing that demonstrates ... that this is really an independent company here in America, that the factories report to us, the engineering centers in California and Detroit report to us, the purchasing organization — which is a big leverage for the cost situation — is reporting into the North American region, plus, of course, all the sales and marketing. So we really have all the levers in our hand now, not only to listen to the demands of the market, but really also to implement them." Some of the parts of Woebcken's plan have come to fruition including cutting the prices on various models like the Tiguan and introducing a new 6 Year/72,000 Mile warranty. Other parts of Woebcken's plan include, Shortening Volkswagen's long product cycles with plans to “introduce two new cars every year” to North America Localize part sourcing for their two North American plans in Chattanooga, TN and Puebla, Mexico Roll out Volkswagen's electrification strategy beginning in 2020 with the I.D. Crozz It is an ambitious plan but it seems to be paying off somewhat. Sales in 2017 rose 5.2 percent. In 2018, sales are up 5.8 percent. We highly recommend checking out this piece by Automotive News as we are only scratching the surface. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)
  5. A new report from Automotive News says that Ford is planning to end North American production of the Fusion sedan at the end of this decade. According to sources, the automaker has begun to notify suppliers that it will not produce the next-generation Fusion at their Hermosillo, Mexico plant. Suppliers have also been told that Ford will stop producing the Mondeo (Fusion in other markets) at their Valencia, Spain plant. This is further complicated by a report from Reuters saying the company is consolidating production to a plant in China. Ford has since denied this report. “We have no plans to export the next-generation Fusion/Mondeo from China to North America and Europe. Fusion/Mondeo are an important part of the Ford car lineup. We will have more information to share about the next Fusion/Mondeo at a later date,” the company said in a statement. A spokesman declined to comment when asked if Ford would stop selling Fusion in the U.S., replace it with another vehicle, or build it elsewhere. Previously, Ford executives have said that the shift from cars to crossovers/SUVs will be permanent. Back in October, the company announced that it would be cutting back on the number of car nameplate it offers, but wouldn't go into details. Ford has already ended production of the C-Max Energi and plans on ending the C-Max Hybrid sometime next year. The Fiesta and Taurus are reportedly on the chopping block as well. What does the future hold for the Fusion? At the moment, it is tough to say. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), Reuters
  6. While the primary focus at PSA Group for the past few months has been purchase of Opel and Vauxhall from General Motors, there has been another project that has been going in the shadows, the return of the French automaker to the U.S. Speaking at the CAR Management Briefing Seminars this week in Traverse City, MI, the CEO of the recently established PSA North America Larry Dominique gave a status update. Back in April, PSA made their first foray into North America with the launch of car-sharing service TravelCar in Los Angeles and San Francisco. The next step is the launch of the Free2Move application into North America. Already launched in Europe, the application allows users to book and pay for a variety of transportation services such as public transit or ride hailing. For Europe, the application has eight different services on offer. Dominique said the app allows PSA Group to "interact with consumers more often than engaging solely in car sales." “We’re going to be starting to engage with millions of Americans. By the time we’re ready to sell cars, selling cars will just be the exclamation point at the end of the sentence,” Dominique told Automotive News on the sidelines. Also in the works is figuring out a dealership with the various services such as financing, servicing, and parts. Building out a dealer network will cost a fair chunk of cash and trying to something different with selling their vehicles is a no go for the time being. “We are looking for progressive, innovative and digital-minded partners,” said Dominique in an effort to reduce costs. “I’m not prepared to talk about how we are going to come to market (in North America) but it will be practical, traditional and use technology.” Dominique is aware of how big of a challenge that he is taking on and they only get one chance to get it right. “We’ve got to be able to do things in a new, innovative way. I don’t have the infrastructure and the legacy in place. We have a chance to do this right once.” Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), Wards Auto
  7. Care By Volvo was one of the first new car subscription services to launch. It offered a buyer an XC40 with a yearly allowance of 15,000 miles; maintenance, insurance, and a concierge service for either $600 or $700 per month for 24 months. But the service had some hiccups with various issues dealing with paperwork and not hearing back from dealers. "The process was very, very stretched. We have learned that the process needs to be smoother, and also the process related to insurance and all the rules in all the states in this beautiful country ... we have learned a lot," said Volvo's North American CEO, Anders Gustafsson to Roadshow. A key example is having a larger stockpile of vehicles allocated for subscribers. The entire Care by Volvo allotment of XC40s sold out in four months, causing Volvo to push deliveries of new XC40s through the service till next year. Gustafsson admits Care By Volvo is "far away from where we would like to be." But he believes the S60, the next vehicle to be offered through the service will be much smoother. Roadshow also asked Gustafsson what's next for Care By Volvo. He revealed that it could be used cars. A used-car subscription service "is probably 50 percent of the questions that we receive from our customers and from our retailers," said Gustafsson. As for when something like this could appear, Gustafsson said it could happen within a year. Source: Roadshow View full article
  8. There was a number of people who were disappointed at the news that Ford wouldn't be bringing over the Ranger Raptor to the U.S. When you take into consideration that the current-generation model has been sold around the world since 2011, Ford decided it was too late in the lifecycle of the model to design a Raptor variant to meet various regulations. But there is the chance of the next-generation Ranger Raptor coming to the U.S. Road & Track has done some sleuthing into social media profiles for various Ford engineers and has uncovered some interesting information. The current Ranger has an internal project code of P375 and is expected to stick around for a few more years. The next-generation model, due in 2022, uses the code of P703. It is expected that the next-generation Ranger will be sharing a number of parts with the Bronco. How does the Raptor fit into this picture? In a recently posted project description, it mentions a chassis engineer has been working on a Ranger Raptor with the P703 code being built with North America in mind. The engineer has also worked on the current version of the Ranger (known as P375N) and the Ranger Raptor. Doing some more digging and speaking to some sources at Ford, the new Ranger Raptor is likely to be called “Project Redback” internally. Project Redback was the project name for the current Ranger Raptor. Road & Track doesn't have any information the powertrain, but speculates that North America would likely get a gas engine. Other markets get a diesel engine for the Raptor. Source: Road & Track View full article
  9. The recently announced alliance between Ford and Volkswagen will not bring any benefits to North America at the beginning. Both companies said that the partnership will focus on Africa, Europe, and South America beginning with commercial vans and the next-generation Ranger/Amarok pickup. Down the road, both Ford and Volkswagen said there could be a potential product for the U.S. While Ford is keeping quiet on what that product could be, Volkswagen CEO Herbert Diess said that a commercial vehicle being jointly developed by the two could come over. "Some of those, yes, but it's not yet decided which vehicle comes to America," said Diess. Volkswagen's commercial vehicle lineup is extensive with vans ranging in size from the compact Caddy (Transit Connect-sized) to the large Crafter (about Transit-sized). We would guess something like the Caddy and possibly the Transporter coming to the U.S. in the next few years. Of course, there is talk about a pickup truck - something dealers have been asking for some time. While there is a very slim chance of the Amarok coming, the Atlas Tanoak concept shown at New York last year seems to have a better chance. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), 2 View full article
  10. For a number of years, people have been saying the biggest problem with Volkswagen is they haven't “figured out the American market yet.” Even the automaker admits that it's the reason that its market share has dropped. Volkswagen has tried again and again to make some inroads into the market to no avail. But the German automaker is giving it another go. Automotive News had the chance to do a deep dive into Volkswagen's new plan by speaking with Volkswagen Group of America CEO Hinrich Woebcken. His plan involves turning this division into an American car company - in spirit. It should be noted that Woebcken came to the U.S. as an exchange student in the seventies, something he credits for getting him interested in industrial engineering. "I owe America, I owe Rochester, N.Y., and I owe this metal shop for how I basically went to start my adult life. We want to get more Americanized not only in our product but in our business. It's not that we're giving up on the genes of the Volkswagen brand. Volkswagens are Volkswagens. But what we recognized over the years is ... that we were too much a small-car company, too much a sedan company," said Woebcken. This plan was sparked only a couple months into his position as Volkswagen America's CEO. During a meeting with dealers, Woebcken was introducing the three-row crossover that is now known as the Atlas. But at the time of the meeting, it was wearing the Teramont name. Dealers hated the name and wanted to have Atlas as the name. Woebcken agreed to talk with his bosses about changing the name. "Everybody said there was no chance to convince headquarters to change the name of a regional product. It's not a big thing, I know, but it's a symbolic statement that Wolfsburg said, 'OK, the region is independent. They want to make sure the brand is getting successful in this country. Let them decide for themselves the name,' " explained Woebcken. "It was, in terms of Volkswagen, a pretty big thing that demonstrates ... that this is really an independent company here in America, that the factories report to us, the engineering centers in California and Detroit report to us, the purchasing organization — which is a big leverage for the cost situation — is reporting into the North American region, plus, of course, all the sales and marketing. So we really have all the levers in our hand now, not only to listen to the demands of the market, but really also to implement them." Some of the parts of Woebcken's plan have come to fruition including cutting the prices on various models like the Tiguan and introducing a new 6 Year/72,000 Mile warranty. Other parts of Woebcken's plan include, Shortening Volkswagen's long product cycles with plans to “introduce two new cars every year” to North America Localize part sourcing for their two North American plans in Chattanooga, TN and Puebla, Mexico Roll out Volkswagen's electrification strategy beginning in 2020 with the I.D. Crozz It is an ambitious plan but it seems to be paying off somewhat. Sales in 2017 rose 5.2 percent. In 2018, sales are up 5.8 percent. We highly recommend checking out this piece by Automotive News as we are only scratching the surface. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) View full article
  11. While the primary focus at PSA Group for the past few months has been purchase of Opel and Vauxhall from General Motors, there has been another project that has been going in the shadows, the return of the French automaker to the U.S. Speaking at the CAR Management Briefing Seminars this week in Traverse City, MI, the CEO of the recently established PSA North America Larry Dominique gave a status update. Back in April, PSA made their first foray into North America with the launch of car-sharing service TravelCar in Los Angeles and San Francisco. The next step is the launch of the Free2Move application into North America. Already launched in Europe, the application allows users to book and pay for a variety of transportation services such as public transit or ride hailing. For Europe, the application has eight different services on offer. Dominique said the app allows PSA Group to "interact with consumers more often than engaging solely in car sales." “We’re going to be starting to engage with millions of Americans. By the time we’re ready to sell cars, selling cars will just be the exclamation point at the end of the sentence,” Dominique told Automotive News on the sidelines. Also in the works is figuring out a dealership with the various services such as financing, servicing, and parts. Building out a dealer network will cost a fair chunk of cash and trying to something different with selling their vehicles is a no go for the time being. “We are looking for progressive, innovative and digital-minded partners,” said Dominique in an effort to reduce costs. “I’m not prepared to talk about how we are going to come to market (in North America) but it will be practical, traditional and use technology.” Dominique is aware of how big of a challenge that he is taking on and they only get one chance to get it right. “We’ve got to be able to do things in a new, innovative way. I don’t have the infrastructure and the legacy in place. We have a chance to do this right once.” Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), Wards Auto View full article
  12. A new report from Automotive News says that Ford is planning to end North American production of the Fusion sedan at the end of this decade. According to sources, the automaker has begun to notify suppliers that it will not produce the next-generation Fusion at their Hermosillo, Mexico plant. Suppliers have also been told that Ford will stop producing the Mondeo (Fusion in other markets) at their Valencia, Spain plant. This is further complicated by a report from Reuters saying the company is consolidating production to a plant in China. Ford has since denied this report. “We have no plans to export the next-generation Fusion/Mondeo from China to North America and Europe. Fusion/Mondeo are an important part of the Ford car lineup. We will have more information to share about the next Fusion/Mondeo at a later date,” the company said in a statement. A spokesman declined to comment when asked if Ford would stop selling Fusion in the U.S., replace it with another vehicle, or build it elsewhere. Previously, Ford executives have said that the shift from cars to crossovers/SUVs will be permanent. Back in October, the company announced that it would be cutting back on the number of car nameplate it offers, but wouldn't go into details. Ford has already ended production of the C-Max Energi and plans on ending the C-Max Hybrid sometime next year. The Fiesta and Taurus are reportedly on the chopping block as well. What does the future hold for the Fusion? At the moment, it is tough to say. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), Reuters View full article

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