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Jeff Gordon to drive Corvette Z06 Indy 500 pace car

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(May 3, 2015) INDIANAPOLIS — Five-time Brickyard 400 winner and four-time NASCAR Sprint Cup champion Jeff Gordon will drive a Corvette Z06 pace car for the 99th running of the Indianapolis 500 mile race, May 24 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

2016 Acura ILX



INDIANAPOLIS — Honda found out the hard way that just because it put a fancy suit and snooty logo on the working-class Civic didn’t make a luxury car.  We’re talking about the ILX, which shares architecture and assembly space with the venerable compact Honda.  Early ILXs were noisy, rode harsh, and weren’t up to their price.  In fact, many felt the Civic Si was a better all-around car for less coin.  For 2016, the ILX trades sass for substance.

2015 Audi Q3



GREENVILLE, S.C. — Audi Q3 2.0T Premium Plus Quattro Tiptronic is a mouthful of name for a compact crossover. On some versions, Audi actually manages to include much, but not all, of this information on the rear liftgate. Breaking down this nomenclature tells us that it’s Audi’s all-new entry-level crossover.

2015 Jeep Renegade



SAN JOSE, Calif. — Jeep's timing is impeccable, introducing its new Renegade just when the small SUV crossover segment is expected to grow by a whopping 80 percent over the next two years. To make matters even better for the Jeep brand, the Renegade hits the bullseye joining the subcompact SUV ranks with a capable and affordable vehicle for suburban living while giving hardcore Jeep enthusiasts on a budget a true off-road warrior.

Vehicle of the Week

2015 Infiniti Q60 — Performance plus curb appeal



By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

The Infiniti Q60 sports coupe is aging gracefully with a great combination of satisfying performance and point-and-shoot handling together with an exhaust note that will get the juices flowing. Throw in an exterior that we still consider cool and sexy and you have a sports car that will make you look good.

Here's the Thing

New-car transaction prices rising steadily; up 2.6 percent in April

(May 1, 215) IRVINE, Calif. — The analysts at Kelley Blue Book kbb.com today report the estimated average transaction price (ATP) for light vehicles in the United States was $33,560 in April 2015.  New-car prices have increased by $836 (up 2.6 percent) from April 2014, while increasing $195 (up 0.6 percent) from last month.

Michigan most expensive, North Carolina cheapest for car insurance

(April 27, 2015) SAN FRANCISCO — Michigan has the nation's most expensive car insurance and North Carolina has the cheapest, according to a new insuranceQuotes.com report. Michigan drivers pay more than double the national average (+136%), while North Carolina drivers pay 41% less than the national average.

New-vehicle sales in April expected to be strongest since 2005

(April 27, 2015) WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif. — U.S. total and retail new-vehicle sales in April 2015 are expected to reach their highest levels for the month since 2005, according to a monthly sales forecast from J.D. Power and LMC Automotive.

New-vehicle retail sales in April 2015 are forecasted to reach 1,179,000 units, a 5 percent increase compared with April 2014 and the highest retail sales volume for the month since April 2005 when sales hit 1,190,125. Retail transactions are the most accurate measure of consumer demand for new vehicles.

Inside the Industry

Porsche sells over 5,000 vehicles in one month for first time in U.S.

(May 3, 2015) ATLANTA — Porsche Cars North America has announced April 2015 sales of 5,217 vehicles, up 28 percent compared to April 2014.

“This is the first time in PCNA history that we celebrate exceeding 5,000 units in one month — a milestone record,” said Detlev von Platen, president and chief executive officer, Porsche Cars North America. “The U.S. market continues to show increased demand and passion for Porsche.”

Mitsubishi makes sales headway in April

(May 3, 2015) Mitsubishi Motors, which all but vanished from the U.S. entering this decade, continued its sales momentum in April with vehicle sales of 8,216 units, a 25.6 percent sales increase from April 2014. It  marks the 14th consecutive month of year-over-year sales increases for Mitsubishi, and it was the best April sales total in the last seven years.

U.S. vehicle sales rise 4.6 percent in April

(May 2, 2015) U.S. vehicle sales in April, led by demand for light trucks, rose 4.6 percent as every automaker but Honda recorded an increase. The industry stretched its streak of advances from the year-earlier month to 14 as total sales reached 1.46 million. But the results fell short of projections for a 5.9 percent gain.

The seasonally adjusted sales rate — 16.52 million — was also shy of estimates in the 16.7 million range. The pace of sales in April was down from March’s 17.1 million rate but up from 16.1 million in April 2014.

Abandoned Car of the Week

1957 Ford seeks a good home



This 1957 Ford has probably been for sale for a considerable amount of time based on its condition. The Ford sedan was spotted along the side of a road in rural Kentucky south of Cincinnati. The full-size Ford was restyled for 1957 and came with six engine choices — a 3.7-liter inline 6, and 4.5-liter, 4.8-liter, 5.1-liter, 5.4-liter and 5.8-liter V-8s. Transmission choices were a three-speed manual or a two-speed or three-speed automatic.
(Photo by Jim Meachen)