April 2019

20 million vehicles will have Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant by 2023

(April 9, 2019) LONDON — As voice control continues to gain popularity in the home, consumers are increasingly hoping to use Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, or Apple Siri in the vehicle too. An increasing number of OEMs are now poised to give into popular consumer demands and integrate Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant in-vehicle, without the need for a handset and despite concerns over data and OEM-branding.

OnStar's stolen vehicle assistance can help counteract vehicle thefts

(April 8, 2019) A new advertising campaign highlights how OnStar can quickly and safely recover stolen vehicles. With vehicle theft recently hitting an eight-year high, OnStar’s Stolen Vehicle Assistance can provide members with peace of mind if their vehicle is stolen.

New Nissan LEAF PLUS joins 200-plus mile range EVs

By Jim Prueter

(April 8, 2019) Nissan first debuted its all-electric LEAF in 2010. It quickly became the best-selling electric vehicle in the world, with more that 400,000 sold since that time. However, given the recent success of the more advanced Tesla Model 3, that distinction may not hold up for much longer.

Survey finds more than half of British drivers 'horrified' by driverless cars

(April 7, 2019) Motorists are less enthusiastic than ever about the idea of driverless cars — with more than half of drivers saying the idea “horrifies” them. Newly released figures show that motorists are now more fearful and skeptical about computer-controlled driving than they were just two years ago. The online motor retail specialist BuyaCar.co.uk has tracked consumer attitudes to the concept of autonomous vehicles since April 2017.

Motorists planning more than one summer trip if gas prices remain low

(April 6, 2019) WASHINGTON — Spring fever may be in the air, but American motorists already have summer road trips top of mind. AAA’s latest gas price survey found that if prices remain low, one in three Americans (33 percent) would likely plan another summer road trip while 27 percent would increase the distance of one — with Generation X more likely to do both than Baby Boomers.

Toyota, Subaru, Lexus models win most Best Retained Value Awards

(April 5, 2019) SANTA MONICA, Calif. — Edmunds has announced the 2019 Edmunds Best Retained Value Awards, recognizing the new 2019 vehicles and brands with the highest projected residual values after five years. Toyota and Lexus took home brand-level honors in the standard and luxury categories, respectively, with the highest aggregate retained value scores in their class.

Audi A4 Allroad helps spark comeback of the station wagon

By Paul Borden

(April 4, 2019) This goes back far too many years that I care to acknowledge, but once upon a time my friends from high school and I got together with our families for an informal reunion about 20 years or so after our graduation.

Our meeting place was a park in our hometown, and it became somewhat of a running joke as the afternoon wore on that each of us showed up in a station wagon.

Auto loan interest rates hit 10-year high according to Edmunds

(April 4, 2019) SANTA MONICA, Calif. — Car shoppers looking to get a break from rising interest rates didn't find it in March, as the average interest rate on a new vehicle loan hit its highest level in a decade. According to the car shopping experts at Edmunds, the annual percentage rate (APR) on new financed vehicles is expected to average 6.36 percent in March, compared to 5.66 percent last year and 4.44 percent five years ago.

National gas price average up 44 cents since Jan. 1

(April 3, 2019) The national gas price average has increased 44-cents since New Year’s Day, landing today’s average at $2.69. While that is seven-cents more expensive than last week and 27-cents more than last month, it is only four cents more expensive than last year.

“Three months ago motorists could find gas for less than $2.50 at 78 percent of gas stations. Today, you can only find gas for that price at one-third of stations, which is likely giving sticker shock to motorists across the country,” said Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokesperson.

Average new-car price up more than 2 percent year-over-year

(April 3, 2019) IRVINE, Calif. — The valuation analysts at Kelley Blue Book today reported the estimated average transaction price for a light vehicle in the United States was $36,733 in March. New-vehicle prices increased $824 (up 2.3 percent) from March 2018, while decreasing $174 (down 0.5 percent) from last month.  

"Prices climbe
d more than 2 percent year-over-year in March, led by full-size trucks, where half of the models are new," said Tim Fleming, analyst for Kelley Blue Book.