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Mysterious problems disrupt delivery of 2020 Ford Explorer, Lincoln Aviator

Automotive / Automotive News /

DETROIT -- Ford Motor Co. is quietly shipping thousands of 2020 Ford Explorers and Lincoln Aviators by truck from its Chicago factory to its Flat Rock plant south of Detroit as workers desperately attempt to identify and fix a series of complicated problems in the much-awaited SUVs.

Dealers in different parts of the country confirm they've been...Read more

Ford: Court of Appeals orders review of Focus, Fiesta owners' class-action settlement

Automotive / Automotive News /

DETROIT -- The U.S 9th Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday declined to approve a class-action settlement involving Ford Motor Co. and nearly 2 million owners and former owners of Focus and Fiesta vehicles with defective dual-clutch transmissions known as DPS6.

The judges vacated "final settlement approval" after Public Citizen, a nonprofit ...Read more

Under the Hood: Proper tire inflation is vitally important

Automotive / Automotive News /

I thought I'd do something a little different today. Retirement from my automotive technology teaching job was short-lived, as I missed playing with kids and Monterey Peninsula College had an opening to staff an afternoon introduction to automotive technology class. It's a bit of a drive from the Santa Cruz Mountains, but a pleasant one, and ...Read more

Director of UAW Region 5, successor to union chief Jones, charged in corruption probe

Automotive / Automotive News /

DETROIT – The current director of the UAW region covering 17 states from Missouri to California has been arrested and charged in the federal government's ongoing corruption investigation of the union, which has now spread well beyond allegations that worker training funds were misused.

Vance Pearson, 58, of St. Charles, Missouri, faces six ...Read more

Review: The Fiat 500X is a sporty ride in a small package

Automotive / Automotive News /

I drove a rented 2018 Fiat 500 this summer in the Italian Alps and thought, "What a dog." Then I drove a new 2019 Fiat 500X in the Malibu mountains and thought, "What a blast!"

The difference between the two cars was under the hood. The 500 I drove in Malibu was powered by Fiat's all-new 1.3-liter turbocharged engine. It's a game changer.

Fiat...Read more

Review: Honda introduces the 2019 Passport as a contemporary two-row crossover

Automotive / Automotive News /

For 2019, Honda has expanded its crossover utility lineup – and has brought back along-retired model name – with the introduction of the all-new, five-passenger midsize Passport, which slots between the compact CR-V and the larger three-row Pilot.

Some of you might recall that Honda sold its first midsize, five-passenger Passport sport-...Read more

Review: Every car should be a little like the 2020 Toyota Corolla hybrid

Automotive / Automotive News /

A day driving the 2020 Toyota Corolla hybrid raises two questions:

1. Why on earth did it take Toyota more than 20 years to get around to making a hybrid version of its signature car?

2. Why, in 2019, does any automaker bother building a car that's not a hybrid?

The Corolla hybrid checks just about every box: fuel economy, value and -- with a...Read more

You can save big money on a new Ford Taurus, Jeep Wrangler, Chrysler Pacifica

Automotive / Automotive News /

DETROIT -- Looking for a great deal on a new car? Buying site has some tips on what models to look for to save up to 52% off MSRP.

You'd be surprised at how many new cars from previous model years are still on dealers' lots as the 2020 models start rolling into dealerships ... and how much you can save by picking one.

Buying the ...Read more

The old reliable Subaru Outback blazes through generations

Automotive / Automotive News /

An early Subaru Outback ad from 25 years ago claimed the wagon had "more cargo space than a Honda Passport, more driver headroom than a Jeep Cherokee, ground clearance like a Ford Explorer, plus the riding comfort and fuel economy of a passenger car."

Not much has changed, yet much has changed.

"It was kind of that SUV, all-wheel-drive vehicle...Read more

Larry Printz: The Nissan Leaf is the electric car you never read about

Automotive / Automotive News /

The government is incredibly talented at making our lives miserable. Consider the DMV. Few places are closer to hell on earth than this sloth-filled state agency, where speed and efficiency are two words that mean nothing.

And while government agencies can't run their own operations properly or profitably – compare the post office to FedEx or...Read more

Electric vehicle sales are up sharply in California, mostly due to Tesla

Automotive / Automotive News /

Sales of new electric vehicles in California shot up 63.7% in the first half of the year, to 51,750 units, largely on the strength of the Tesla Model 3.

But that doesn't mean a golden age of electric vehicles has dawned. Pure electric cars still total only 5.5% of California car sales. Consumers, for the most part, are shrugging at EV offerings...Read more

UAW workers brace for potential strike, remember the unity of past walkouts

Automotive / Automotive News /

DETROIT -- UAW member Kenneth Mefford has a vivid memory of the 2015 contract negotiations. He almost walked off the assembly line onto a picket line.

It was one minute before midnight on the expiration date of the union's contract. Workers had heard nothing on whether a new tentative deal had been struck.

"Everything stopped. We all stopped ...Read more

Lawyer uncovered GM crisis, took on automaker when NHTSA didn't

Automotive / Automotive News /

DETROIT -- Lawyer Lance Cooper doesn't put much faith in the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's ability to keep the public safe in vehicles.

And Cooper, 56, knows a little something about vehicle safety.

He's the guy who discovered the faulty ignition switches in millions of General Motors' cars. He blew the whistle in 2014 and ...Read more

Editorial: Why the Trump administration's auto antitrust probe is sure to flop

Automotive / Automotive News /

The use of law-enforcement agencies for blatantly political purposes should be anathema in a healthy democracy. But President Donald Trump doesn't agree, as evidenced by the announcement that the Justice Department has begun a baseless antitrust investigation of Ford, Honda, Volkswagen and BMW of North America.

Under federal law, an antitrust ...Read more

'Junk' rating for Ford from Moody's hurts ability to borrow money, warns investors

Automotive / Automotive News /

DETROIT -- Ford Motor saw its credit rating downgraded to "junk" status by Moody's Investors Service late Monday.

The impact of the action, which occurred after the stock market closed, could increase the cost of borrowing money because the automaker is considered a higher credit risk -- sort of like a higher interest rate on a car loan for ...Read more

Recall expansion: Ram truck tailgates might open when they aren't supposed to

Automotive / Automotive News /

DETROIT -- More than 2 million older Ram trucks have been recalled because of defects that could lead their tailgates to open unexpectedly.

The latest announcement is an expansion of a recall from this spring, but the updated recall is larger, covering an additional 693,128 trucks and adding to a separate 1.1 million truck recall announced last...Read more

Eager to see that Tesla pickup? Elon Musk says you'll need to wait a bit longer

Automotive / Automotive News /

Tesla CEO Elon Musk has called his company's first electric pickup the "coolest car" he has ever seen.

And you'll have to take him at his word about that for a little longer: The public debut of the Tesla pickup is going to happen later than originally thought.

Musk must have had some free time over the weekend, because he got onto Twitter to ...Read more

Trump administration launches legal attack on carmakers' fuel-economy deal with California

Automotive / Automotive News /

WASHINGTON -- The Trump administration warned California on Friday that its deal with four automakers to increase mile-per-gallon standards for cars violates federal law.

In a letter to the California Air Resources Board, officials for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Transportation said the deal struck with Ford, ...Read more

Trump administration threatens California over emissions deal with automakers

Automotive / Automotive News /

WASHINGTON -- The Trump administration sent California a stern warning Friday that its agreement with four major automakers to reduce car pollution appears to violate federal law.

The letter from the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Transportation is the latest sign of President Donald Trump's anger at California and the ...Read more

Under the Hood: Troubleshooting a wonky starter

Automotive / Automotive News /

Q: I had to have my '97 Honda Accord towed home because the starter wouldn't crank the engine. I have a friend who is interested in trying to fix it for me but he sounds a little perplexed about whether it might be the ignition switch or the battery or the starter for sure.

Is there a way these things can be checked to be sure of which part is ...Read more