Gas price increase kicks off busy summer driving season

(May 31, 2017) Gas prices are averaging $2.37 this week — one cent more than a week ago, two cents more than a month ago and five cents more than a year ago. Rising gasoline demand has resulted in dropping gasoline inventories across the country, according to the latest Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) report, according to the weekly report by AAA.

Study finds plug-in hybrids to experience transformational growth

(May 31, 2017) LONDON — From the imminent launch of 100 new models, favorable incentives, and emission target compliance, to sufficient battery capacity for daily driving ranges and consumer willingness to pay, plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEVs) are ready for transformational growth.

However, the phasing out of electric vehicle (EV) incentives, advent of long-range battery electric vehicles (BEVs), emergence of 48V mild hybrids, and the complexity of having two powertrains in a single vehicle may impede PHEV adoption.

Ford, Fields and the inside story of new CEO Jim Hackett

By Christopher A. Sawyer
The Virtual Driver

(May 28, 2017) When I awoke last Monday morning to the news that Ford Motor Company wou
ld announce the “retirement” of company CEO Mark Fields later that day, my mind snapped back to the Ford press conference at this year’s Detroit auto show. It was, in a word, a disaster.

Mobility for the people — The founding of Volkswagen 80 years ago

(May 29, 2017) WOLFSBURG — Eighty years ago marked the beginning of one of the most successful automobile producers in the world. On May 28, 1937, the predecessor to today's Volkswagen Group, "Gesellschaft zur Vorbereitung des Deutschen Volkswagens mbH" ("Corporation to prepare the way for the German People's Car") was established in Berlin. 

A company, whose history began with the production of the Beetle, has developed over the past 80 years into a global player with 12 brands, 120 production sites on four continents, more than 620,000 employees and more than 10 million vehicles sold per year.

GasBuddy study finds low gas prices prompt more road trips

(May 26, 2017) BOSTON — More Americans are planning to hit the road this summer compared to 2016, according to the annual Summer Travel Study conducted by GasBuddy. More than 82 percent said they will take a road trip this summer, a 7-percent increase from last year and a 9-percent increase compared to 2015, with a majority (70 percent) planning to take at least two trips.

Memorial Day sales propping up May results, Edmunds says

(May 26, 2017) SANTA MONICA, Calif. — Edmunds forecasts that 1,527,363 new cars and trucks will be sold in the U.S. in May for an estimated seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) of 16.8 million. This reflects a 7.5 percent increase in sales from April 2017 and a 0.3 percent increase from May 2016.

"Generous incentives are keeping traffic flowing to dealer lots, but a lot is riding on Memorial Day sales for automakers to keep momentum strong through the critical summer selling months," said Edmunds Executive Director of Industry Analysis Jessica Caldwell.

New-vehicle sales to remain flat year-over-year in May, KBB reports

(May 25, 2017) IRVINE, Calif. — New-vehicle sales are expected to remain flat year-over-year at a total of 1.53 million units in May, resulting in an estimated 16.7 million seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR), according to Kelley Blue Book

"We could see a positive month for the industry for the first time this year in May, but Kelley Blue Book expects totals to finish about even year-over-year, despite one extra selling day in 2017," said Tim Fleming, analyst for Kelley Blue Book. 

Flood of off-lease vehicles creating buyer's market for car shoppers

(May 24, 2017) SANTA MONICA, Calif. — Car shoppers hitting dealer lots this Memorial Day weekend will find themselves in one of the strongest buyer's markets in recent memory, according to the latest Used Vehicle Market Report from Edmunds. A growing glut of off-lease vehicles means shoppers who are looking for a car between 3 and 4 years old will have a huge selection to choose from, and this surplus also means dealers will likely be ready to negotiate to help close the deal.

Report finds 288,000 workers building technology for cleaner cars

(May 24, 2017) WASHINGTON — Building clean vehicle technology directly supports 288,000 manufacturing and engineering jobs in the United States, according to a new report released by labor and environmental leaders this week.

These workers are employed at more than 1,200 factories and engineering facilities in 48 states, making technology that improves fuel economy for today’s innovative vehicles — everything from more efficient transmissions and turbo-charged engines to light-weight steel and aluminum to electric power steering and regenerative braking.

Kelley Blue Book announces 10 Coolest New Cars Under $18,000

(May 24, 2017) IRVINE, Calif. — While the average transaction price of a new vehicle currently sits at nearly $35,000, the expert editors at Kelley Blue Book prove that you can still find a dynamic and affordable new car that turns heads with their 2017 list of the 10 Coolest Cars Under $18,000. 

The Mazda3 enjoys its fourth consecutive year at the No. 1 spot, and remarkably it has appeared on's annual affordable cool cars list every year of the vehicle's 14-year existence.