Nutson's Nuggets - June 3-9, 2013 Automotive News Factoids Just In-Case You Were Snoozing


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Auto Central Louisville, KY June 9, 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 1,404,088 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 June 3-9, 2013

* May came to a close with U.S. Auto Sales up 8% on sales of over 1.4 million units. The seasonal selling rate is at 15.3 million. Pickups were big sellers. Big gainers were Ford, Nissan and Subaru. Ford Motor is up 14%, Chrysler Group up 11%, GM up 3%. Nissan/Infiniti up 25%, Toyota/Lexus/Scion up 3%, Honda/Acura up 5%, Hyundai/Kia up 2%, Mazda up 19%, Subaru up 34%. VW Group up 4%, BMW/MINI up 10% and Daimler up 8%.

*Parents magazine and Edmunds.com, the premier online resource for car shopping, revealed their list of 2013's 10 Best Family Cars. For the sixth year in a row, car experts from both organizations examined hundreds of vehicles. According to Parents and Edmunds.com, the 10 Best Family Cars of 2013 are: HYBRID Toyota Prius C, BUDGET Subaru Impreza and Honda Civic, SEDANS Ford Fusion and Honda Accord, CROSSOVERS Hyundai Santa Fe Sport and Honda CR-V, SUVs Chevrolet Traverse and Nissan Pathfinder, MINIVAN Toyota Sienna.

* Ford Motor Co is recalling 465,000 2013 models to check for fuel tank leaks that could result in a fire. The automaker said it won't have enough replacement parts for all owners until September. Models include the 2013 Ford Fusion, Flex, Explorer, Taurus, Interceptor Sedan and Interceptor Utility, as well as the 2013 Lincoln MKZ, MKS and MKT.

* AutoTrader.com recently conducted the "Automotive Relationship Survey" to determine the emotional reasons why it now takes longer than ever before for consumers to break up with their cars. The survey says consumers tend to personify their cars to the point that the relationship with them mirrors relationships with living beings in their lives. More than 70 percent of respondents feel "very attached" or "somewhat attached" to their cars. Dependability (65 percent) and comfort (52 percent) were the primary drivers of attachment. The survey also revealed gender and generational differences in the relationships people have with their cars. More women than men said they were attached to their cars because of the way it looks (48 percent of women vs. 29 percent of men), while more men than women bond with their cars because of fond memories of the adventures they shared together (57 percent of men vs. 20 percent of women).

* Chrysler is refusing to recall about 2.7 million Jeeps the government says are at risk of a fuel tank fire in a rear-end collision. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration sent Chrysler a letter asking that the company voluntarily recall Jeep Grand Cherokees from 1993 through 2004 and Jeep Libertys from 2002 through 2007. Chrysler Group LLC said in a statement that the Jeeps are safe and it "does not intend to recall the vehicles." The Jeeps meet all government safety standards. This will be interesting to watch.

* But, Chrysler will recall more than 409,000 Jeep Patriot and Compass small SUVs across the globe from the 2010 and 2012 model years to fix air bag and seat-belt problems. It's also recalling 221,000 Jeep Wranglers worldwide from 2012 and 2013 to fix transmission fluid leaks.

* The Chevrolet SS sports sedan price was announced at $44,470, with shipping. It goes on sale in the fourth quarter and is priced below the Chrysler 300 SRT and Dodge Charger SRT, although it is Chevy's highest price sedan.

* Toyota Motor Corp. is recalling 242,000 hybrid vehicles worldwide, including 86,500 Toyota Prius and Lexus HS 250h hybrids in the United States, to fix a braking glitch. The problem affects only model year 2010 Prius and HS 250h vehicles.

* General Motors will include free maintenance on most 2014 Chevrolet, Buick and GMC models in a bid to increase sales through better customer loyalty. Buyers will get free oil and filter changes, tire rotations and 27-point inspections for two years or 24,000 miles, whichever comes first. GM recently began offering the same deal on its Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups and already offers a more extensive free-maintenance program for Cadillac.

* Toyota revealed the 11th generation, all-new 2014 Corolla which is substantially larger and expected to be EPA rated above 40mpg in the highway test. It goes on sale this fall. The new Corolla is longer and lower with a radical new look aimed at young buyers.

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