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  • VW says proposed settlement in emissions scandal contains $4.3 billion in fines

    VW says proposed settlement in emissions scandal contains $4.3 billion in fines

    German automaker Volkswagen said Tuesday that it was in “advanced talks” with United States authorities over a proposed settlement in its diesel emissions scandal under which the company would pay $4.3 billion in criminal and civil fines. The draft settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice...

  • Trump's tweets are a new challenge for carmakers

    Trump's tweets are a new challenge for carmakers

    Donald Trump has made it clear: He doesn’t like automakers building cars in Mexico and exporting them to the U.S. It’s uncertain how automobile trade policy will change under the incoming Trump administration. But one thing’s for sure: Whenever an automaker creates a new job in the U.S., it’s going...

  • VW executive who was in charge of U.S. emissions rules is arrested

    VW executive who was in charge of U.S. emissions rules is arrested

    The Volkswagen executive who once was in charge of complying with U.S. emissions regulations was arrested during the weekend in Florida and accused of deceiving federal regulators about the use of special software that cheated on emissions tests. Oliver Schmidt, who was general manager of the engineering...

  • Ford's Bronco SUV and Ranger pickup truck are coming back

    Ford's Bronco SUV and Ranger pickup truck are coming back

    A blast from the past: Ford is bringing back the Bronco and the Ranger. The Bronco is a truck-style 4x4 sport utility vehicle that was discontinued 20 years ago. It’s best known as the vehicle O.J. Simpson drove in an infamous 1994 police chase after he failed to appear for arrest in connection...

  • 2017 Audi Q7: The pleasures of the pricier people mover

    2017 Audi Q7: The pleasures of the pricier people mover

    The German occupation of Silver Lake began with the SUVs. Driveways once filled with Honda Accords, Toyota Camrys and vintage Volvo station wagons began to sprout BMW X3s and X5s and Audi Q3s and Q5s. Though I myself had been part of an earlier wave of gentrification, when I moved into the area...

  • Nissan plans to make robot cars; human 'mobility managers' will intervene when needed

    Nissan plans to make robot cars; human 'mobility managers' will intervene when needed

    Nissan is the latest in a now long line of automobile companies to go public with plans — sketchy as they may be — for autonomous cars. The Japanese company will begin testing driverless cars in Japan and put them into commercial operation by 2020, according to Carlos Ghosn, who spoke at the Consumer...

  • 2016 U.S. auto sales set a new record high, led by SUVs

    2016 U.S. auto sales set a new record high, led by SUVs

    U.S. consumers bought a record number of new cars and trucks in 2016. A repeat performance in 2017 could be a tall order. Low gas prices, rising employment and low interest rates kept buyers coming to car dealerships last year. There was also the allure of new technology — such as backup cameras,...

  • Troubled Faraday Future unveils a 'new species' of automobile. Is it already extinct?

    Troubled Faraday Future unveils a 'new species' of automobile. Is it already extinct?

    You may have heard about the exotic new super-fast, highly connected, ultra-luxury electric car called the FF91.  It’s more than a car, says its maker, Faraday Future: It’s “the first of a new species” that combines green transportation, autonomous mobility and top-flight digital entertainment....

  • Tesla begins churning out battery cells at Nevada Gigafactory

    Tesla begins churning out battery cells at Nevada Gigafactory

    Batteries are crucial to the future of Tesla, best known as a car company but currently transforming itself into an ambitious alternative energy provider. On Wednesday, the company and its partner, Panasonic, announced the start of mass production of lithium-ion battery cells at Tesla’s giant Nevada...

  • In 'vote of confidence' for Trump, Ford cancels Mexico factory and will invest in Michigan

    In 'vote of confidence' for Trump, Ford cancels Mexico factory and will invest in Michigan

    For months, despite criticism from President-elect Donald Trump, Ford Motor Co. executives insisted that they would not alter their intention to spend $1.6 billion to build a new factory in Mexico.  But with Trump poised to be take office and showing no hesitation to use his new clout to publicly...

  • Best of 2016: Highway 1's top picks for the year

    Best of 2016: Highway 1's top picks for the year

    I drove, rode or reviewed almost 100 vehicles in 2016. The ones I liked best were... Porsche’s 911 Turbo S Equipped with a 3.8-liter, twin-turbo, 6-cylinder engine that makes 580 horsepower and 553 pound feet of torque, it’s the quickest and fastest Porsche ever built for the general public, going...

  • Auto sales expected to match last year's record, but may be plateauing

    Auto sales expected to match last year's record, but may be plateauing

    Growth and vitality: For seven years, that has been the central story for the U.S. auto industry. That story’s coming to an end — the growth part, anyway. Final numbers are due Jan. 3, but 2016 figures for unit sales of light motor vehicles are expected to come in right around last year’s total...

  • Puddle jumper: 2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trailhawk

    Puddle jumper: 2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trailhawk

    Fiat Chrysler’s Jeep division does well with its Grand Cherokee line, selling just under 200,000 of them last year in the U.S. So it’s only logical the company would expand the line to include the Trailhawk badge, which signifies increased eagerness to hit the trail. For 2017, Jeep has reintroduced...

  • Is flat track racing getting back on track?

    Is flat track racing getting back on track?

    Jared Mees squinted dubiously at the dirt motorcycle track. “That ain’t no mile,” the Grand National champion and X Games gold medalist said. Indeed, the short indoor course was a temporary track laid out by American Supercamp, a training academy that had come to Los Angeles with its techniques...

  • It's official: Tesla and Panasonic team up on solar-panel cells

    It's official: Tesla and Panasonic team up on solar-panel cells

    Tesla Motors Inc. and Panasonic Corp. said Tuesday that they would begin producing cells for solar panels next summer at a sprawling factory opening in Buffalo, N.Y., expanding a relationship between the two technology firms. The Palo Alto automaker and the Japanese electronics company said they...

  • The time is right to buy a used car

    The time is right to buy a used car

    Looking for a deal on a used car? Now’s a good time to buy. After years of climbing higher, used-car prices have been heading down. This year used-car prices declined about 4% on average compared with 2015, and the trend may continue for another year or two, industry watchers said.  “This is the...

  • 2017 Corvette Grand Sport: Great, but how great?

    2017 Corvette Grand Sport: Great, but how great?

    Chevrolet’s Corvette has been recognized for more than 60 years as one of the finest American sports cars ever built. Because it has consistently stuck to its roots, the Corvette inevitably feels like both an icon and a throwback — a mighty, meaty machine built for sucking fuel and burning rubber....

  • Millennials and car ownership? It's complicated

    Millennials and car ownership? It's complicated

    Millennials have produced plenty of anxiety for automakers. As the stereotype goes, entitled young adults would prefer to hail an Uber, take public transportation or even hitch a ride from Mom instead of driving; an unusually large number of young millennials haven’t even bothered to get a driver’s...

  • Uber pulls its self-driving cars off the streets of San Francisco

    Uber pulls its self-driving cars off the streets of San Francisco

    In a rare occurrence, Uber submitted to state authorities and pulled its self-driving cars off the streets of San Francisco. The state Department of Motor Vehicles on Wednesday revoked the registration of 16 Uber cars being used commercially as test vehicles for self-driving technology. Although...

  • Battery makers Tesla and Sonnen tout similar products but have different strategies

    Battery makers Tesla and Sonnen tout similar products but have different strategies

    The two top competitors in the home energy storage market — a market that barely exists at present — are preparing for burgeoning sales in coming years as renewable energy supplies grow more common. One name is familiar: Tesla, the electric car maker, which makes a battery called the Powerwall...

  • Heat on ice: Dodge Challenger GT goes AWD

    Heat on ice: Dodge Challenger GT goes AWD

    Just in time for winter, Dodge has unveiled an all-wheel-drive version of its Challenger GT. The resulting vehicle, capable of baking up endless amounts of snow donuts, will retail for just under $35,000. Dodge calls the new vehicle “the world’s first and only all-wheel-drive American muscle coupe.”...

  • Why the driverless car industry is happy (so far) with Trump's pick for Transportation secretary

    Why the driverless car industry is happy (so far) with Trump's pick for Transportation secretary

    Silicon Valley voted heavily for Hillary Clinton, but companies working on driverless cars seem overjoyed with President-elect Donald Trump’s nominee for Transportation secretary, Elaine Chao. Chao will wield great power over how driverless cars and other automated vehicles will be regulated —...

  • Why a hacker is giving away code that turns cars into self-driving machines

    Why a hacker is giving away code that turns cars into self-driving machines

    Here is a strategy for start-ups dealing with regulators who might shut down your product: Make it free. Scrappy self-driving-car start-up Comma.ai released a free software kit this week to help developers learn to build a device that can turn any car into an autonomous vehicle. The year-old company,...

  • Ford recalls 680,000 cars; seat belts may not hold in crash

    Ford recalls 680,000 cars; seat belts may not hold in crash

    Ford is recalling more than 680,000 midsize sedans mainly in North America because the front seat belts may not hold people in a crash. The recall covers certain 2013 to 2016 Ford Fusion, 2013 to 2015 Lincoln MKZ and 2015 and 2016 Ford Mondeo cars. Ford says heat generated when the seat belt pre-tensioners...

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