New Chrysler 200 Review


“The 2015 Chrysler 200, though, an all-new midsize sedan created after Fiat took control of the Chrysler Group, makes an astounding evolutionary leap.

It’s like I went to bed one night as me — a small, grouchy gray-haired guy running out of open road — and woke up as Dirk Nowitzki, the smiling, golden giant king of Dallas.

Well, that may be a slight exaggeration — but not by much.”

Video Review



Mazda Recalling Cars Due to Danger From Insect

AP – Mazda is recalling 42,000 Mazda6 cars in the U.S. because spiders can weave a web in a vent hose and cause the fuel tank to crack.

The recall involves cars from the 2010 through 2012 model years equipped with 2.5-liter engines.

The yellow sac spider, which is attracted to hydrocarbons, builds webs that cause pressure to build in the fuel tank. That increases the risk of fuel leaks and fire.

Mazda recalled cars in 2011 for the same problem. It put covers on the vent line, but has found spiders can get past them.

Mazda will update the cars’ software for free beginning this month to ensure that the fuel tank pressure doesn’t build up.

Mazda says no injuries or fires have been reported due to the issue.




Tata unveils Bolt hatchback and Zest sedan

from the AutoBlog As we noted last month, news of a Tata Nano diesel brought with it other news that the Indian car company would introduce a new sedan and hatchback, a hatchback with a rear hatch that actually opens. The company used the 2014 Auto Expo in Delhi to do just that, the Bolt hatch and Zest sedan introducing audiences to the unified marketing pushes called DesignNext, DriveNext and ConnectNext under the HorizonNext banner.

The two international models are twins, both based on an improved version of the X1 platform used for the Tata Indica Vista. The only differences are that the Zest gets LED DRLs and 16-inch wheels instead of the Bolt’s 15-inchers, and the Zest gets the option of an automated manual transmission. Otherwise, Tata appears to be intent on giving both offerings segment-first or segment-defining features.

Both cars get the option of a turbocharged, 1.2-litre Revotron gas engine with 84 horsepower and 103 pound-feet of torque, as well as a 1.3-litre Multijet turbodiesel with 75 hp and 140 lb-ft. The Bolt makes do with a five-speed transmission affixed to either engine, while the Zest can be fitted with the F-Tronic automated manual. More

U.S. Plans Car-to-Car Warning System

New York Times WASHINGTON — The federal government said on Monday that it planned to require all new cars to broadcast their location, speed, direction and other data, and to receive similar data from other vehicles, to warn drivers of impending collisions. But regulators cautioned that any new rules would be years away.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration plans to issue a report in the next few weeks that would lay out the costs and benefits of such a system. Anthony Foxx, the transportation secretary, said he hoped his department could advance the concept to the status of a proposed rule, open for public comment, before President Obama left office in January 2017.

“A lot of innovation and safety to this point has been about protecting the occupants of a vehicle after an accident occurs,” he told reporters. But now, he said, technology allows a system “in which the safety advances kick in before an accident occurs.”


Welcome to the Future, the XL1

The VW XL1 is a 261 mpg concept car written about recently on Car & Driver. My old friend Arthur Koch just got his contract renewed to work for the company as a graphic artist. Above is the article link and a recent picture of Arthur with the XL1 is below. Arthur is the best living artist I know. He’s also a highly evolved foodie in the best sense of the word. He studied under my first college art teacher. Not just for for one class like me, but for his entire college career as a protege. Art can paint, draw, and photograph better than anyone I know. He is a brilliant artist who will undoubtedly be a huge asset to VW. Here he is with the XL1. Click on the picture for a full sized image. Congratulations AK!


Michelin Recalls 1.2M Tires

Michelin North America is recalling 1.2 million tires in the United States — including some used as original equipment on full-size Ford vans — because the tread might come apart, according to a report from the tire maker posted on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administrationwebsite.

Michelin said the LTX M/S tires in a 225/75/16 size were designed for “commercial light trucks, full-sized heavy duty vans, small recreational vehicles and some large pickup trucks.”

Ford used the tires as original equipment on the 2010 through 2013 models of its E-Series vans, a Ford spokeswoman, Kelli Felker, wrote in an email. More

Ward’s Best Engines for 2014

Chrysler’s all-new Ecodiesel 3.0-liter turbodiesel V6 is one of three diesel engines to be named one of Ward’s 10 Best Engines for 2014. | December 12, 2013 | Chrysler LLC

Just the Facts:

  • Three diesel engines are among the Ward’s 10 Best Engines for 2014.
  • Demarcating the extremes of the Ward’s best-engines list are Ford’s fuel-sipping new three-cylinder and the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette’s 6.2-liter V8.
  • Signifying the rapid pace of powertrain advance, eight of the year’s best engines are first-time winners, Ward’s said.


Rounding out the Ward’s 10 Best Engines list for 2014 is the 83-kilowatt electric motor for the Fiat 500e (yes, Ward’s occasionally bends the definition of “engine” for special-purpose powertrains).