Inside the Industry

Ford, Volkswagen sign agreements for joint projects on EVs, autonomous driving

(June 12, 2020) DEARBORN, Mich. — Ford and Volkswagen have signed agreements that expand their global alliance to meet rapidly evolving needs of their respective customers in Europe and other regions by leveraging complementary strengths in midsize pickup trucks and commercial and electric vehicles. Plans for the agreements were first announced by Ford and Volkswagen last July.

The companies expect the alliance to enhance ownership experiences for current and future customers by more rapidly innovating vehicle offerings, incorporating relevant new technologies, delivering better utility and offering more model choices. 

Ram launches another armed forces-inspired Limited Edition truck

(June 12, 2020) AUBURN HILLS, Mich. — Ram Truck has announced that production of the second installment of the “Built to Serve Edition” trucks has begun at its Sterling Heights (Michigan) Assembly Plant. Ram is celebrating America's five land, sea and air-based armed forces with “Built to Serve Editions” of its popular Ram 1500 half-ton pickup truck lineup. This second installment offers a nautical-inspired theme with both Ceramic Gray and Patriot Blue exterior colors offered along with a black interior with Light Ambassador Blue accent stitching.

New electric-powered shuttles to start service in south Sacramento

(June 12, 2020) SACRAMENTO,  Calif. — The first of three new GreenPower EV Star shuttles will be put into service beginning Monday (June 15) as part of Electrify America’s more than $40 million Green Cities investments in Sacramento. The vehicles are being integrated into SacRT’s highly popular SmaRT Ride on-demand micro-shuttle program servicing the Franklin-South Sacramento communities.

BMW launches second generation of hybrid X5 plug-in Sports Activity Vehicle

(June 12, 2020) WOODCLIFF LAKE, N.J. — BMW has launched the second generation plug-in hybrid X5 Sports Activity Vehicle, the newest addition to the U.S. X5 lineup. The U.S. X5 xDrive45e The U.S. X5 xDrive45e arrives with a SULEV Super ultra-low emissions vehicle rating which can bring additional benefits in states which offer special consideration to drivers of electrified vehicles, such as high occupancy lane access stickers.

BMW Manufacturing achieves historic 5 million milestone on June 4

(June 11, 2020) SPARTANBURG, S.C — BMW Manufacturing achieved another milestone on June 4 with production of the five millionth BMW built in the United States. The historic vehicle is a Toronto Red Metallic BMW X5 M Competition equipped with a 617-horsepower M TwinPower Turbo V-8 engine, Silverstone Full Merino Leather interior and 21/22-inch M Star-spoke bi-color wheels. Due to its historic significance, this X5 M Competition will remain at the factory and become part of the BMW historic collection.

Ford launches its first Spin scooter rental business in Germany

(June 11, 2020) COLOGNE, Germany  —  Spin, the company that pioneered the modern regulatory framework for stationless mobility, today launches its first international market in Cologne, Germany. The following week Spin will follow the successful launch in Cologne with launches in two additional German cities, Dortmund and Essen. The pricing structure – €0.30 per minute (34 cents) with no fee to unlock a ride lowers the barrier to entry for an even more affordable way to commute short distances or visit multiple destinations within a given time period.

Ford issues two safety recalls involving 2.4 million Ford, Lincoln vehicles

(June 11, 2020) DEARBORN, Mich., — Ford is issuing two safety recalls in North America. The first involves 2011-2015 Ford and Lincoln vehicles for a door latch issue. The second involves  2014-17 Ford F-150 vehicles equipped with 3.5-liter EcoBoost engine. In affected vehicles, the brake master cylinder may allow brake fluid to leak from the brake master cylinder front-wheel circuit into the brake booster. The first recall involves 2.15 million vehicles in the United States and the second recall involves 292,311 vehicles in the U.S.

2021 Subaru Crosstrek gets 2.5-liter engine with more horsepower

(June 11, 2020) A new Sport trim joins the Subaru Crosstrek lineup for 2021 with a 182-horsepower 2.5-liter 4-cylinder Subaru Boxer engine offering a substantial performance boost over the 2.0-liter engine in the Base and Premium trims. The Limited trim also adds the 2.5-liter engine. The 2021 Crosstrek will arrive at retailers late summer. With a continuously variable transmission the engine is rated at 27 mpg city, 34 highway and 29 combined.

New heat pump technology turns up EV efficiency in Hyundai-Kia vehicles

(June 10, 2020) SEOUL — Hyundai Motor Company and Kia Motors have today revealed new details of their innovative heat pump system, deployed in Hyundai and Kia’s global electric vehicle (EV) line-up to maximize their all-electric driving range in low temperatures.

Hyundai and Kia’s heat pump is a leading heat management innovation that maximizes the distance that Hyundai and Kia EVs can travel on a single charge, scavenging waste heat to warm the cabin. It enables EV drivers to heat their car’s cabin in cold weather without significantly impacting electric driving range, unlike other EVs.

Toyota produces first hybrid transaxle in North America

(June 10, 2020) BUFFALO, W.Va. — After more than two years of dedicated preparation, Toyota Motor Manufacturing West Virginia (TMMWV) produced Toyota’s first hybrid transaxle in North America this previous week. “Our team has been planning for this new production line for several years, from construction to pilot projects to hiring new employees and countless hours of training,” said Srini Matam, TMMWV president.