Auto News for Nov. 21


BMW’s i3 has been named Green Car of the Year over four other finalists. Green Car Journal called it a “milestone vehicle in many respects.” The i3 has lots of sustainable materials inside, and offers a gasoline engine generator that extends the driving range to about 100 miles.

Volkswagen has made no bones about the fact that it wants to be the top selling brand worldwide over Toyota. To that end, VW will spend $106 billion over the next five years on its products, factories and technology.  “We will continue to invest in the future to become the leading automotive group in both ecological and economic terms,” CEO Martin Winterkom said.

Arizona is suing GM for $3 billion over the automaker’s claim that it is not responsible for products produced before its bankruptcy in 2009. It is the latest dispute involving the “old” GM and the “new” GM. The automaker said Arizona “misrepresents the facts” and it intends to “vigorously” defend itself.

Experian said the percentage of auto loans that are at least a month overdue rose 3.7 percent from July through September. Those two months past due are up 8.6 percent. It cited the growth in subprime loans to customers with a checkered financial record. The majority of the market remains in prime risk category.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s call for a nationwide recall of Takata airbags has won the backing of the Triple A. Because vehicles are bought and sold across state lines, it is in the best interest of consumers to expand this recall to all states, the auto club said. It called Takata’s handling of the matter unacceptable.

AAA also predicted that more than 46 million of us will travel over the Thanksgiving holiday, the most since 2007. Road trippers likely will pay the lowest Thanksgiving price for fuel in five years. More than 89 percent of travelers will move about on the roads. (After all, even the recently tested Scion tC had more rear seat room than virtually all airliners.)

Road & Travel magazine has named the Kia K900 as its International Car of the Year for the third year in a row.

Patrick Dempsey will continue to compete in the Sports Car World Endurance Championship next year and that includes racing in the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The actor joined the Porsche motorsport family in 2013 and has just now re-upped for 2015.








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