HONG KONG- Marking another significant step in its plan to further expand its presence in the premium automotive sector, Infiniti today announced details of a new nomenclature strategy to be applied to its complete product range beginning with the 2014 model year. The first model to carry Infiniti’s new Q badge will be the Q50, an all-new premium sports sedan to be unveiled at the North American International Auto Show in January 2013.
BOWMANVILLE, ON: “I can’t tell the difference… can you tell the difference?” Other than this being a pop culture reference from a decade or two ago in the comparison of a value-priced shampoo and the (at the time) number one selling brand, blind tests have been a tried and tested form of instant affirmation of a brand’s status – regardless of the product.
DETROIT, MI- Honda is recalling more than 870,000 minivans and SUVs worldwide, including more than 52,000 in Canada, because they can roll away even though drivers have removed the keys from the ignition.
The recall announced Wednesday affects older-model vehicles sold mainly in the United States but also includes a total of 52,441 in Canada. They were big sellers with families because of their ample space and reputation for quality.
Honda Canada says the recall will involve approximately 23,300 Honda Odyssey and 12,400 Honda Pilot vehicles from the 2003-2004 model years and about 16,600 Acura MDX vehicles from the 2003-2006 model years in Canada.
"Honda Canada has received several complaints about such failures in these vehicles, but has received no reports of accidents or injuries related to this issue," the company said in a statement.
OTTAWA - The Conference Board says Canada's auto parts sector is expected to post a record increase in revenues this year along with impressive production and profit gains.
And although 2013 won't be as strong, the Ottawa-based think-tank forecasts it will still be another good year.
DEARBORN, MI– Ford’s all-new Transit full-size van, which goes on sale late next year, will be offered with a new clean-running 3.2-litre Power Stroke® five-cylinder diesel, further bolstering Ford’s lineup of fuel-efficient cars, trucks and SUVs.
The new diesel, Ford’s second in North America, already has established a proven record for reliability, durability and refinement in the global Ford Ranger truck sold in world markets. The new Power Stroke Diesel will be the only five-cylinder diesel engine available in a commercial van in North America.
DETROIT, MI - After years of dismal sales, Ford's Lincoln luxury brand is reintroducing itself with a new name and a new midsize sedan.
The brand is returning to the name Lincoln Motor Co. as it launches its new MKZ sedan. That was its name before founder Henry Leland sold the brand to Ford in 1922, and it was used in advertising all the way through the 1970s and 1980s, Lincoln chief Jim Farley said. Consumer research showed that people found the name change intriguing."It's a refreshing change to highlight what will be great about Lincoln going forward, which is impeccable service and really breakthrough vehicles," Farley told The Associated Press in an interview Monday.
The MKZ will arrive at dealerships this month. It starts at $35,925, or about the same as its archrival, the Lexus ES 350. A hybrid version is the same price. The MKZ is the first of seven new or revamped Lincolns that will go on sale by 2015.
TORONTO - Canadian auto sales are on the road to besting their 2011 performance, with sales for the first 11 months of the year up 6.5 per cent to nearly 1.6 million vehicles, according to an industry watcher.
DesRosiers Automotive Consultants said Monday year-to-date vehicle sales in Canada rose to 1.57 million with one month left in the year.
"A solid December is widely expected, and Canada has a chance at breaching the 1.7 million unit mark, potentially making 2012 one of the best-ever years for new vehicle sales in this country," Dennis DesRosiers said in a report. "We suspect that the market will come in just shy of record levels, but second best on record is very likely. And there should be more to come over the next few years as the market is expected to continue to grow."Sales have only broken the 1.7 million mark in one year, 2002, when about 25,000 of those vehicles were sold to Americans buying because of favourable exchange rates.
Several New Models to Enter the North American Market, Announcements on Motorsports and Diesel
IRVINE, Cal – Mazda North American Operations (MNAO) today confirmed the announcement of several North American vehicle debuts at the upcoming Los Angeles Auto Show. The all-new 2014 Mazda6 mid-size sedan, updated 2014 CX-5 compact SUV and face-lifted 2013 CX-9 mid-size SUV will make their first continental appearances. All vehicles are scheduled to be on sale this winter. A global debut from Mazda Motorsports as well as official timing and vehicle application for the U.S.-destined SKYACTIV-D 2.2-liter clean diesel engine also will share the stage.
DETROIT, MI - Volkswagen is recalling some 2,500 Beetles in the United States and Canada because the front passenger seat airbag could inflate and injure a small child.
The recall includes 2012 and 2013 Beetles with leather sport seats. If the seat gets wet, the module that's supposed to detect a child seat could fail, meaning the air bag could go off in a crash and hurt the child.
Volkswagen says 320 vehicles are involved in the recall in Canada, although 95 of them are still on dealer lots.
The company says no one has been injured. Cars are supposed to detect child seats and switch off air bags automatically.
The problem was discovered in routine factory inspections. The affected cars were built from February through August.
Volkswagen will replace the seat module free of charge. The company will notify owners when the parts are ready.
With the first snowfall around the corner, it’s that time again where we brace ourselves for the cold and buy a new winter coat and boots. Some of us might like to hibernate in the winter time when we can, but others are most adventurous and most have to at least commute to work – this is where the all-season versus winter tire debate begins.
Recently I was invited to a winter vehicle preparation clinic hosted by Canadian Tire. It was a chance to showcase their new automotive winter products and learn first-hand how all-season and winter tires perform on a local hockey rink.
Safety should always be paramount whenever you use your vehicle, but I don’t believe people understand the vast differences between the two types of tires. All-season is a catchy name that can make a driver feel safe, but when it comes to winter driving the softer compound on winter tires retains elasticity giving you much more control and traction. While, all-season tires tend to harden at 7 Celsius and lose their grip.
The decision is clearly not just based on which is better – if that was the case everyone would have winter tires, but whether it’s worth it to buy. Winter tires can be a large investment for some, which would double their cost for tires and add extra charges for making the tire switch twice a year. It’s an individual or family choice and it should be based on how often you use your vehicle and what you use it for. If you use your car very sparingly – I might say it’s not worth it to make the winter tire investment, but if you do travel a sizeable distance or like to drive in the winter time – the Canadian Tire hockey rink experience might help you with your decision.
The two tires being tested were the MotoMaster SE2, Canadian Tire’s best-selling all-season and Goodyear’s Nordic Winter Tire, designed specifically for life in Canada. I was told before beginning that modern winter tires offer up to 50% - or even more – winter traction than all-season tires by Graham Jeffery, Category Business Manager at Canadian Tire. These sets of tires were placed on identical Hyundai Elantra GT’s and they were tested through various skating rink routes and stops.
Now it was time to see for myself…
I started with the blue Elantra GT which had the Goodyear Nordic Winter tires on it. It cornered well around the rink, but not too much throttle could be used as I began to head straight for the hockey boards. With an ease off of the accelerator and a steering wheel rotation in the opposite direction (counter-clockwise) I was back on track and feeling safe. After numerous laps and slopes it was time to test out the brakes. A stop sign was situated just ahead of a large measuring tape in ft. I slowly accelerated up to 15 km and slammed the brakes at the stop sign finally coming to a complete stop 21 ft. away.
Now it was time for the comparison as I jumped into the red Elantra GT with the all-season MotoMaster SE2’s. I felt the difference immediately as I tried to glide it up to 15 km, which was a struggle. The harder compound rubber failed to get any traction for my turn and that was my indication to slow down. I didn’t feel the same comfort level while driving and was overly cautious with any acceleration. As for the braking test – well it took an extra 14 ft. to stop as I landed on 35 ft. away from the stop sign.
There are various types of winter tires on the Canadian market, and it's important to assess your needs in order to select the right tire for your kind of driving. The Goodyear Nordic Winter Tire was exceptional compared to the MotoMaster all-season tire and you can only imagine what the difference might be in real road conditions while driving in speeds four times more than I was going. “Goodyear’s Nordic Winter Tire can stop 45 ft. shorter than a regular all-season when traveling at 60 kms,” said Jeffery. The braking gap between the two was eye-opening and if safety is a concern – you better get suited for some winter tires before the first snowfall.