March 2016

First-ever IIHS headlight ratings show improvement needed

(March 31, 2016) ARLINGTON, Va. — The Toyota Prius v is the only midsize car out of 31 evaluated to earn a good rating in the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's first-ever headlight ratings. The best available headlights on 11 cars earn an acceptable rating, while nine only reach a marginal rating. Ten of the vehicles can't be purchased with anything other than poor-rated headlights.

A vehicle's price tag is no guarantee of decent headlights. Many of the poor-rated headlights belong to luxury vehicles.

Shell Eco-marathon announces competition for UrbanConcept vehicles

(March 30, 2016) DETROIT — In less than one month, more than 1,200 high school and university students from 129 teams across the Americas — Brazil, Canada, Ecuador, Guatemala, Mexico, Puerto Rico, and the United States — will return to the streets of downtown Detroit with a fleet of custom-built, ultra-energy efficient cars to compete in the 10th Shell Eco-marathon Americas.

Student teams can choose to participate in one or both of the Prototype (futuristic designed vehicles) and UrbanConcept (traditional designed concept vehicles) classes at Shell Eco-marathon Americas 2016.

Kelley predicts biggest jump in car sales in 10 years

(March 29, 2016) IRVINE, Calif. — New-vehicle sales are expected to increase 8 percent year-over-year to a total of 1.66 million units in March, resulting in an estimated 17.2 million seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR), according to Kelley Blue Book.  Two additional selling days will help this month's volume totals as the SAAR will stay relatively consistent with recent months.

TrueCar overhauling its user experience to benefit customers, dealers

(March 29, 2016) SANTA MONICA, Calif. — TrueCar is overhauling its platform to improve transparency for consumers who count on it when searching for new and used vehicles and to increase benefits of the service to dealers.

The enhancements are being made as part of a “Dealer Pledge” initiative announced Monday to the TrueCar Certified Dealer network to address concerns they have expressed over the past few years.

Average U.S. gas prices above $2 after climbing for 21 consecutive days

(March 29, 2016) WASHINGTON — The national average price of gas climbed above $2 per gallon last Thursday for the first time in 2016, and average prices have increased for 21 consecutive days. Today’s average price of $2.04 per gallon is up six cents per gallon on the week and 30 cents per gallon for the month, according to AAA.

Autotrader lists its annual 'Must Test Drive Vehicles' of 2016

(March 28, 2016) ATLANTA — For consumers in the market for a new car, it can be difficult to keep up with all of the new — and newly redesigned — models that have been released since they last bought a car. Autotrader's editorial team is helping consumers narrow down the many choices on the market today by selecting the top 10 vehicles that shoppers should experience for themselves.

How to build your own engine coffee table

(March 26, 2016) Gergely Bajzáth has made a good number of engine coffee tables, and constantly enjoys positive feedback and comments about his work. Now, in "How to Build your own Engine Coffee Table," he has decided to share his methods and tips with you, so that you can make one of your own.

Bajzáth, who works as a steel fabricator in the United Kingdom, says that whether in your living room, workshop, den, man cave, or girl shed, an engine coffee table is a great talking point, and is almost guaranteed to become the main topic of conversation when friends visit.

Edmunds predicts continued growth in car sales in March

(March 25, 2016) SANTA MONICA, Calif. — forecasts that 1,655,462 new cars and trucks will be sold in the U.S. in March for an estimated Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate (SAAR) of 17.2 million. The projected sales will be a 23.5 percent increase from February 2016, and a 7.3 percent increase from March 2015.

Kiekert unveils 'i-protect' vehicle door braking system

(March 23, 2016) HEILGENHAUS, Germany — Kiekert AG, a technology leader in automotive locking systems, has reached the next milestone. In the space of six months, Kiekert has completed its innovative prototype vehicle with the electromechanical door protection function, i-protect.

U.S. average gas price may climb above $2 for first time in 2016

(March 23, 2016) WASHINGTON — Pump prices have climbed higher for two straight weeks, and the national average price of gas may soon climb above $2 per gallon for the first time this year. Gas prices have increased largely due to seasonal increases in fuel demand and reduced production as some refineries conduct maintenance, according to AAA.