Here's the Thing

Hyundai maintains top spot in Kelley Blue Book's brand loyalty rating

(October 17, 2011) IRVINE, Calif. — Kelley Blue Book today reports that Hyundai upheld its No. 1 spot for brand loyalty on kbb.com for the third quarter 2011, marking its second consecutive quarter on top.

For the third quarter, Hyundai's brand loyalty was at 48 percent, with Toyota nearly closing in at 47.9 percent and Subaru at 45.9 percent.  Rounding out the top-five brands for Q3 2011 are Kia in the fourth spot at 45.3 percent and Ford in fifth at 45.2 percent.

Used prices expected to drive new car sales in fourth quarter

(October 15, 2011) MCLEAN, Va. — Above average trade-in values for used cars are expected to increase new vehicle sales in the fourth quarter, says Jonathan Banks, senior analyst with the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) Used Car Guide.

"We expect consumer demand for small and mid-size, fuel-efficient cars to shift from the used market to the new market in the fourth quarter," Banks said.

Lexus ranks highest in Japanese customer satisfaction with dealer service

(October 13, 2011) TOKYO — When it comes to providing after-sales service, customer perceptions of the care and quality with which key services are performed have a strong impact on overall satisfaction with the dealer, according to the J.D. Power Asia Pacific 2011 Japan Customer Satisfaction Index (CSI) Study.

'Tis the season to prepare for winter driving

(October 12, 2011) ORLANDO, Fla. — AAA reminds motorists that cars need seasonal checkups to maintain safety and maximize operational efficiency. Regular maintenance and seasonal checkups can also help prevent unexpected repair costs in the future.   

"No one wants to be stranded in the cold by a vehicle breakdown," said John Nielsen, director, AAA Approved Auto Repair. "Properly preparing your vehicle for winter driving is essential for the safety of all passengers and will greatly decrease the chances of your vehicle letting you down."

U.S. deer-vehicle collisions fall 7 percent

(October 12, 2011) BLOOMINGTON, Ill. — For the third consecutive year, the number of deer-vehicle collisions in the U.S. has dropped. And the downturn is accelerating. 

The percentage decline over the last year is nearly three times as large as during the previous two years combined.  Using its claims data, State Farm, the nation's leading auto insurer, estimates 1.09 million collisions between deer and vehicles occurred in the U.S. between July 1, 2010 and June 30, 2011. 

Chevrolet turns 100, and the journey is just beginning

(October 11, 2011) DETROIT — When the first Chevrolet was built in 1911 in a rented garage near downtown Detroit, it began a journey that has taken Chevrolet to every corner of the planet. A hundred years and more than 209 million cars and trucks later, Chevrolet is one of the world’s largest car brands, doing business in more than 140 countries.

Survey: Global consumers not plugging into electric vehicles

(October 11, 2011) DETROIT — Consumers worldwide expect electric vehicles to travel farther, require less charge time and retail for a lower price than automakers are offering, according to a new survey from Deloitte.

In fact, consumers' expectations around performance and purchase price are so divergent from the actual offerings available today, that no more than 2 to 4 percent of consumers worldwide would have their expectations met, according to the survey.

Consumer Reports gives Chrysler 300 top ranking

(October 10, 2011) It seems to be completely out of character for automotive testers at consumer magazine's Consumer Reports. The magazine has given the 2011 Chrysler 300 a thumbs up.

Revamped for 2011, the Chrysler 300C scored an “Excellent” overall road test score of 80 in Consumer Reports’ latest tests of four upscale sedans, up from 64 for the previous model. The 300C now ranks midpack among the 10 upscale sedans that have been tested by CR. Previously, it had been near the bottom of the pack.

Honda Ridgeline demise exaggerated, according to Honda

(October 9, 2011) Rumors that the slow-selling mid-sized Honda Ridgeline pickup truck will soon be history are apparently false, according to Honda.

Industry publication Automotive News fueled the rumor when it wrote that the Ridgeline would be discontinued in 2013. Last week it reiterated the "end of the line" contention in a column headlined, "Why Honda's Ridgeline pickup is driving off into the sunset."

Cars.com announces 'Best Tailgating Vehicles' of the season

(October 7, 2011) CHICAGO — With football season in full swing, Cars.com has compiled a list of the best tailgating vehicles for the 2011-2012 football season.

"Tailgating is one of the best parts of going to a football game and the perfect tailgate can't be a success without the right vehicle," said David Thomas, Cars.com Managing Editor.