Nutson's Nuggets - Automotive News May 27-June 2, 2013 Just In-Case You Were Snoozing


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Auto Central Louisville, KY June 2, 2013; Each week Larry Nutson, Senior Editor, New York Bureau of The Auto Channel, along with Steve Purdy and Thom Cannell from The Auto Channel Michigan Bureau give you easy to digest nuggets of the past week's automotive news you may have missed.

If you are a car nut like we all are, you can easily "catch up" on these stories as well as the past 17 year's 1,383,987 automotive news, automotive stories, articles, reviews, rants and raves by just searching for the subject you are interested in The Auto Channel's Automotive News Archive. Hey South Florida TV viewers, I know you are enjoying watching The Auto Channel's TACH-TV on channel 44 WHDT-TV Palm Beach (Cable 17 and 438, channel 9 Miami and channel 32 Fort Meyers-Naples, and thanks for the positive feedback....See you next week, LN

Automotive News May 27-June 2, 2013

* One of the best indicators of how valuable each brand is compared to its rivals is the annual BrandZ Top 100 global survey, conducted by influential market research firm Millward Brown. Toyota is the most valuable automotive brand in the world, with an estimated value of $24.5 billion, a gain of 12 percent on last year‚€™s result. BMW, which has held the top spot since 2010, has been relegated to second, with its value coming in at $24 billion, a drop of 2 percent on last year. Rounding out the top five auto brands are Mercedes-Benz, Honda, and Nissan. Toyotas is ranked 23rd among the top 100 brands with Apple at the top a the number one brand.

* The all-new LT1 6.2-liter V-8 engine offering in the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray has been certified at 460 horsepower and 465 foot-pounds of torque ‚€” an increase of 24 horsepower and 37 foot-pounds of torque over today‚€™s LS3 6.2-liter V-8 ‚€” when using a performance exhaust system. The engine is certified at 455 horsepower and 460 foot-pounds of torque with a standard exhaust. That‚€™s up by 25 horsepower and 36 foot-pounds of torque over the LS3 engine. Chevy said both ratings are the highest standard power ever for the Corvette, which is expected to top 26 miles per gallon on the highway.

* The Memorial Day weekend trifecta of motor racing had Tony Kanaan winning his first ever Indy 500, Nico Rosberg dominating the F1 race in Monaco and giving Mercedes-Benz its first ever Monte Carlo win, and Kevin Harvick winning NASCARs longest race the Coca Cola 600 that was red-flagged due to a television camera support cable snapping and falling onto the track.

* Honda is cutting the monthly lease cost of its Fit electric vehicle by one third in a move to match other automakers in an increasingly competitive market. The Japanese automaker is offering to lease the subcompact Fit EV for $259 per month, down $130 from a $389 per month, the lease cost when the car went on sale in July of last year. Honda rolled out the Fit EV last summer in California and Oregon. It now has 36 dealers trained to sell and service the cars in more states including New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Maryland, Rhode Island and Connecticut. It plans to expand that network to more than 200 by the end of June.

* The Department of Transportation made its first policy statement on autonomous vehicles. In a nonbinding recommendation to the states, it said driverless cars should not yet be allowed, except for testing. But it said semi-autonomous features, like cars that keep themselves centered in lanes and adjust speeds to the location of the car ahead, could save lives.

* GM unveiled the 2014 Chevrolet Malibu this week in Detroit. The Malibu received a hurry-up freshening, just a year after its introduction, with the intent to revive its sagging sales. It get a new base-model engine, revised front end, more rear seat legroom, upgraded interior, and suspension tweaks. Gone are the days of letting a so-so car model languish in showrooms being sold only by high incentives.

* An NHTSA report says that young women are more likely to die than men of the same age, in accidents that would be considered equivalent. That goes for both women drivers and female passengers between the ages of 21 and 30. But NHTSA says the situation reverses itself in old age, when it‚€™s men who have a significantly higher risk of being killed in crashes.

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