December 2015

$82 million to be invested in DMAX diesel engine plant; 150 jobs created

(December 13, 2015) MORAINE, Ohio — DMAX, Ltd. will invest $82 million at the DMAX plant for future Duramax diesel engine-related productivity improvements, creating approximately 150 jobs over the next three years at the joint venture between General Motors and Isuzu, dependent on state and local incentive approvals.

Less than a year ago, a $60 million investment was made at the plant to make design changes enabling the engines to meet future emissions requirements.

Ford's European sales rise 20 percent in November

(December 13, 2015) COLOGNE, Germany — Ford’s European sales rose 20 percent in November and improved its market share on rising demand for its newest passenger cars, SUVs and commercial vehicles. It was Ford’s best November in Europe since 2009.

Ford sold 101,500 vehicles in its 20 traditional European markets last month, and 1,181,200 vehicles in the first 11 months of the year. This marked a year-over-year sales increase of 20.5% and 9.9%, respectively. Industry sales were up 13.9 percent in November, and 9.0 percent year-to-date.

Volkswagen begins to put its house in order

By Christopher A. Sawyer
The Virtual Driver

(December 13, 2015) Volkswagen’s response to the diesel scandal has been moving forward with blitzkrieg-like speed. At a press conference this past week at the company’s Wolfsburg headquarters in Germany, Chairman of the Board of Management, Matthias Müller, stated, “We are doing everything to overcome the current situation, but we will not allow the crisis to paralyze us. On the contrary, we will use it as a catalyst to make the changes Volkswagen needs.”

Born again Jaguar concept cars to debut at London Classic Car Show

(December 12, 2015) LONDON — Highly accurate recreations — not replicas — bring two Jaguar icons from the ’60s and the ’90s back to life. The two concept cars from Jaguar — originally built more than three decades apart — have been accurately recreated by classic car experts, who plan to offer exact reproductions for sale.

Harold takes a crack at the cute little Nissan Juke NISMO


(December 11, 2015) The cute little Nissan Juke crossover has been updated for 2015 with such styling updates of the grille, headlights, taillights and rear fascia. Nissan has also added some standard features. But perhaps the most intriguing aspect of the Juke is the performance-oriented NISMO version.

The Automotive Reporter's Harold Gunn got his hands on a copy and he outlines the attributes of the Juke NISMO in his video report. But it seems the thing he likes best about the Juke are its bug eyes sitting high atop the finders. Harold is like that.

Production of McLaren P1 comes to an end

(December 11, 2015) The final chapter in the production of the McLaren P1 has now been written as the 375th and final example was completed, bringing the curtain down on what McLaren calls the most technologically advanced and dynamically accomplished supercar ever made. 

Ford accelerates expansion of electrified vehicle battery research

(December 11, 2015) DEARBORN, MICH. — Ford is expanding its electrified vehicles research and development program in Europe and Asia this year, creating a “hub and spoke” system that allows the global team to further accelerate battery technology and take advantage of market-specific opportunities.

The global expansion also allows Ford’s Electrified Powertrain Engineering teams to share common technologies and test batteries virtually, in real time, to develop new technology faster while reducing the need for costly prototypes.

GM's Fort Wayne Assembly builds seven millionth truck

(December 11, 2015) ROANOKE, Ind. – General Motors’ Fort Wayne Assembly Plant built its 7 millionth pickup truck today with the customer purchasing the blue double-cab 2016 Chevrolet Silverado helping with the build.

Lee Adams, owner of Tri-State Compressed Air in Goshen, Ind., ordered the truck for his sales force from Tom Naquin Chevrolet in Elkhart, Ind. According to Naquin, Adams’ company has purchased more than 50 Chevrolet trucks and vans since 1982.

Hyundai Ioniq: One car, three powertrains

By Christopher A. Sawyer
The Virtual Driver

(December 11, 2015) When word leaked out that Hyundai was working on a Prius competitor, the smart money said the South Korean automaker would launch a standard hybrid and a plug-in version simultaneously. Further, it would be based on an adaptation of an existing platform or be based on a new platform for an existing model, and it would spawn a badge-engineered model for Kia.

Nissan's electric Leaf celebrates its 5th anniversary, 200,000 sales

(December 10, 2015) NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Nissan is celebrating five years at the forefront of the electric vehicle (EV) market with the record-breaking 100-percent electric vehicle Nissan Leaf. Having transformed the performance, practicality and public perception of EVs around the world since its launch in 2010, Nissan remains the undisputed leader in EV technology.

The Nissan Leaf is as advanced and innovative today as it was five years ago. No other manufacturer has produced as many electric vehicles or covered as much distance without producing any emissions.