Let’s start this morning with a new offering from Mercedes, the GLE coupe. It is based on the M-class and will offer four doors. The GLE will make its debut next month at the Detroit Auto Show with production at the Mercedes plant in Alabama. The coupe is seen as a direct competitor to the BMW X6. Look for a 3.0-liter V6 bi-turbo under the hood with 362 hp and 384 lb-ft of torque with all-wheel drive available. It is an interesting addition to the Mercedes lineup given that most Americans are not turned on by fastback roof lines.
Ford will start shipping 2015 Mustang convertibles to dealers this week. In a press release, it quickly noted that heated seats and remote start will be available options along with selectable drive modes with a snow/wet selection. Ford said that means “Mustang is the perfect offering for the season.”
The finalists for North American Car and Truck of the year have been announced and it looks like Ford might capture one or both of the awards.
Car of the Year finalists are:
Hyundai Genesis Sedan
Finalists for Truck of the Year are:
I have often wondered if auto writers who vote on these things should create a separate category for crossovers and sport utility vehicles, so that the Truck of the Year award actually goes to something that most of us would recognize as a real truck.
The winners will be announced next month at the Detroit show. I’m still picking the Mustang and the F-150.
Crossovers are hot sellers these days and Volkswagen wants more of the action. The Detroit Free Press said VW will announce a 5 passenger concept vehicle at the Detroit show. It would be based on a 7 passenger crossover that is already set for production at the VW plant in Chattanooga. Sources told the paper the smaller vehicle might hit the market in 2016 or 2017.
BMW said worldwide sales rose 7.6% last month with 188,342 deliveries and that is a record high. That figure includes the nameplate brand, Mini, and Rolls Royce.
Hyundai is recalling almost 43,000 Genesis and Equus models from 2009-11 to repair brake lights that may not light up.
And Nissan is recalling about 134,000 vehicles to repair a potential fuel leak. The recall involves the 2012-14 Nissan Juke; 2012-13 Infiniti M56/QX56, and the QX70 and QX 80 from model years 2014-15. It said a fuel pressure sensor may not have been properly installed at the factory.