Auto News for Dec. 4

Will the Camry be replaced as the top selling Toyota brand in this country after leading the best seller list for more than a decade? Toyota’s top U.S. sales executive predicts the RAV4 will displace the Camry within the next five years. Bob Carter said young families just entering the market will move the RAV to the top of the list.

And you do want to know what the HOT, HOT, brand is these days? How about one that just reported sales rose 91 percent in November over those of a year earlier? The brand is Volvo thanks to strong demand for the redesigned XC90 and the XC60. And, as pointed out here yesterday, a new luxury sedan is in the works.

Automotive News has a picture of a three row CR-V prototype that Honda has been testing. But it says the vehicle, if it makes to market, may not be offered here in the U.S. for fear it might upset sales of the Pilot and Odyssey.

Add Tesla to the list of auto makers who will not attend the International Auto Show in Detroit. Jaguar Land Rover and Mini have also opted out. A Tesla official cited the cost of the huge displays at the show, and that fact that Tesla is not allowed to sell cars in Michigan due to its unique way of marketing without using local dealers.

VW sales fell 20 percent in November in the U.K. due to the diesel emission scandal. But the VW brand remains the best seller in Germany.

A 30 year veteran at Volks, who was one of eight executives suspended over the emissions matter, has resigned. Ulrich Hackenburg was a member of the Audi management board responsible for tech development. In announcing the resignation, Audi did not mention the emissions scandal.


Hyundai claims its Tucson Fuel Cell vehicle has set a land speed record for a production, hydrogen powered SUV of 94.6 mph. The record was set at the Soggy Dry Lake Bed in the California desert.




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