Little Tikes Cozy Coupe Review – America's Best Selling Car

Friday July 24th, 2009 at 8:77 AM
Posted by: Kurt Gensheimer

By Kurt Gensheimer

Blings:

  • Infinite MPG
  • Makes a Prius look like a gross polluter
  • $50 MSRP
  • Higher quality plastics than a Chrysler

Dings:

  • Some assembly required
  • Disconnected steering
  • Zero headroom
  • No cupholders

Ruling: The perfect car for those who can’t qualify for a loan, are looking to downsize, or who are crack contortionists.

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Buyers Holding Out for Clunkers Cash

Thursday July 2nd, 2009 at 8:77 AM
Posted by: m35man

cadillac deville car wreck

As the 4th of July car-buying weekend approaches, dealerships throughout the country are encouraged by a series of positive signs in the market. Consumers encouraged by promising economic signs headed back to dealer showrooms last month, but sales sputtered in late June as prospective buyers waited for the government to introduce its cash-for-clunkers incentives. Experts say that people are holding onto their old beaters in hopes of tapping into some of that “clunkers cash.”

June’s selling rate slipped below the pace in May and was down sharply from last year, but auto executives said earlier this week that the market had begun a gradual recovery, supported by strengthening consumer confidence.

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It's a Gold Rush for New Car Buyers

Friday June 26th, 2009 at 8:66 AM
Posted by: m35man

car-money icon

In case you didn’t know it, this is a fantastic time to purchase a new vehicle. With programs like “Cash for Guzzlers” kicking in, you can get a super deal for your old beater, and financing deals have never been better. The government will give you a rebate if you buy certain hybrids and will take the car back if you can’t make payments, in some cases.

I never imagined that I would be so inundated by car salesmen once I announced to the world that I was in the market for a new vehicle. It’s been an avalanche of phone calls, e-mails, postcards –literally hundreds of them—all offering unprecedented deals. I feel like a high school football star being recruited by all the top colleges!

With car dealerships closing at an alarming rate, and government bailout money flying around like confetti, this is THE time to purchase a car, because car dealers are hungry for CASH right now.

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Senate Approval Final Hurdle for Cash 4 Clunkers

Wednesday June 10th, 2009 at 8:66 AM
Posted by: m35man

Cash for clunkers

Get ready, clunker owners. If the Cash for Clunkers bill makes it through the Senate (which is no slam dunk) you may be able to trade in your bomber for incentives on a brand new car! Now that it’s in the final turn and making a stretch run, opposition to this bill will be heating up as well, because different segments of the automotive industry apparently think the law itself will be a clunker if and when it’s put into affect.

The auto industry and the nation’s lawmakers are pushing for quick Senate action on “cash for clunkers” legislation to boost auto sales, after the House overwhelmingly passed such a bill yesterday. But it remains unclear when Senate supporters may overcome the objections of Senate appropriators and a group of senators who say the House proposal doesn’t do enough to improve fuel efficiency on the nation’s highways.

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BMW Takes Over Lead from Lexus in Marquee Market

Thursday June 4th, 2009 at 7:66 AM
Posted by: m35man

BMW Roundel

It’s the Germans fighting the Japanese in the battle of the upscale cars. And as of right now, the Germans are winning! BMW has overtaken Toyota Motor Corp.’s Lexus to become the best-selling marquee nameplate in the United States this year to-date.

Lexus has held the top spot since 2000, according to Autodata Corp. But the once mega-popular brand is struggling now, with sales down 37.2 percent. Are former Lexus owners switching to BMW, or are Lexus owners saving money by downgrading to other non top-tier candidates? Evidently.

The last time the BMW brand was No. 1 in the United States for a full year was in 1997, when it also beat its archrival, Daimler AG’s Mercedes-Benz.

But Lexus should never be counted out. The carmaker recently launched the RX 350 SUV and will roll out a hybrid version next week. It will also be introducing its first designated Lexus gas-electric hybrid, the HS 250h, toward the end of the summer.

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British Embrace New Car Scrappage Program

Friday May 29th, 2009 at 10:55 AM
Posted by: m35man

abandoned car

The British government says more than 35,000 new cars have been ordered through its new car scrappage program since it was launched a month ago. The government and car industry are sharing costs to offer discounts of 2,000 pounds ($3,225) to new car buyers who trade in a model more than 10 years old.

Prime Minister Gordon Brown said Friday the program helps consumers and protects jobs by stimulating demand for new cars. The auto industry in Britain is faltering and 11 successive months of declines in new car sales have led to production cut backs and layoffs.

This is not a novel idea, but the British have been more proactive in doing it. Our “Cash for Clunkers” program here in the U.S. is a similar concept, but we’ve been much slower in implementing ours. It’s a great way to get gas guzzling, polluting old vehicles off the road, and provides real incentives for both drivers and car dealers alike. Let’s get on the ball, Obama and Friends. If the Brits took to this program so positively, surely we will too? Right?

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German Car Sales Continue To Rise, +19.4% In April

Tuesday May 19th, 2009 at 8:55 AM
Posted by: tonyb

VW sales go well

Remember when everyone in the car world was running around like something from a biblical epic, gnashing their teeth, wringing their hands, because they thought that judgment day had arrived and this was it, the auto world was coming to an end. Well, tell that to the Germans. While car sales in America are still in the “not so good” territory, German car sales went UP by 19.4 percent in April. That rise compares with a frightening 37.4 percent drop for U.S. car sales in the same month.

Analysts believe that the bump in sales for Germany is largely due to the government’s incentive scheme to scrap old cars and buy new ones that was introduced in February, what is termed here in America as a “cash for clunkers” program. The 19.4 percent up-tick in April, which translates to about 380,000 units, followed a 40 percent leap in car sales in March to around 401,000 units. New car sales in Germany during the first four months of the year are at their best level since the record year of 1999.

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China Domestic Car Sales in the Black

Thursday March 12th, 2009 at 6:33 AM
Posted by: m35man

China’s sales of domestically made vehicles surged 25 percent in February from a year earlier, as customers took advantage of a major tax cut for small cars, the official Xinhua News Agency reported Tuesday, citing industry figures.

In keeping with my mantra of only reporting positive automotive news, I am writing about China’s increased sales of domestic vehicles. I must admit, it’s getting harder and harder to find these kinds of upbeat stories. But, I refuse to get sucked into all of the gloom and doom out there right now. Every day, it’s all about factories closing, carmakers hovering near the edge of bankruptcy and massive layoffs. I believe it all feeds on itself. Having an upbeat attitude and putting a positive spin on it is my personal solution.

What can we learn from China’s recent success? For one, we can start by giving potential new car buyers in this country more incentive to buy, like Hyundai is doing with their “Can’t pay? We’ll take it back” program. These are not normal times, so a “business as usual” approach will not work.

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