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Nutson's Nuggets - Automotive News Factoids August 19-25, 2013


Auto Central Louisville, KY August 25, 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 1,473,223 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 August 19-25, 2013

* After opting out of the biggest advertising event 2013 GM has decided to return to the Super Bowl in 2014. Without announcing how much TV-time they will buy during the big event, Chevy marketing boss Tim Mahoney talked about using it to tout the newest of this years dozen plus new car and truck launches. Fox will be broadcasting the Super Bowl and is expected to get close to $4 million for a 30-second spot.

* this week presented the findings of a study showing that millennials are not as disinterested in having a driver's license and owning a car as some have believed. Speaking before the Detroit Automotive Press Association, AutoTrader's director of research Isabelle Helms said the popular wisdom of youngsters having little interest or need was actually at the bottom of the list of reasons they don't have cars. At the top was being just too busy, being afraid of driving and not being able to cover the costs.

* Last week at Laguna Seca raceway near Monterey, California Chevy wowed the fans at the historic races with a glimpse of the new C7.R race car based on the all new Corvette Stingray expected to contest the GT racing season beginning with the Rolex 24 at Daytona. The camouflage paint scheme could not obscure that distinctive shape and knowledgeable spectators could discern some of the details of the racing design, like air ducting and aerodynamic enhancements.

* As part of the Woodward Dream Cruise events last weekend in Detroit we saw for the first time a high-performance concept pickup from Ram that aimed at Ford's Tremor. This 395-horsepower yellow 1500 Rumble Bee Concept truck with racing stripes celebrates 10 years of the Ram brand. The coolest feature, we think, is the shift knob with an actual bumble been encased inside. We don't know yet if it will reach production. But we vote, yes!

* A new record was set at the RM Auction in California last week as a rare 1967 Ferrari 275GTB/4 N.A.R.T. Spyder brought $27.5 million - including fees. It was the most paid at auction for a car by the Italian carmaker anywhere in the world and the most for any car bought at a U.S. public sale. This is one of only 10 built and has been in the same family since new. One of the other 10 was used in the film, "The Thomas Crown Affair" and ended up in the possession of Steve McQueen who crashed it. He then tried to buy this car but failed. The entire proceeds of the sale will go to charity, according to the seller. The only car to bring more at auction was a Fangio-driven 1954 Mercedes-Benz race car.

* The winner of last week's Pebble Beach Concour d'Elegance, the most prestigious classic and collector car event in the U.S. and one of the most respected in the world, was a beautiful 1943 Packard 1108 Twelve Dietrich Convertible Victoria owned by Joseph and Margie Cassini of West Orange, New Jersey. The judges at Pebble Beach are mighty demanding and to win this honor a car has to be both the best and the best presented.

* The 2014 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 and High Country and the GMC Sierra and Sierra Denali 1500 are the first pickup trucks to receive the highest possible five-star Overall Vehicle Score for safety since the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration changed its New Car Assessment Program for the 2011 model year. The Ford F-150 and Ram 1500 pickups both received four star ratings.

* Some Michigan lawmakers are looking to lift the 70 mph cap on highway speeds and making other changes to reduce speed traps. Two Michigan legislators are working on a bill that could be raising speed limits to 75 mph or 80 mph on some stretches of freeway. The proposal would make all roadways follow the “85th percentile” rule commonly endorsed and employed by transportation officials. That means setting limits that correspond with speeds at which 85 percent of vehicles safely travel. Arizona, Colorado, Maine and Texas, have limits as high as 75 mph or 80 mph.

* While on the subject of speed, the 2013 Bonneville Speed Weeks wrapped up with over 50 new land speed class records having been set and a half dozen new members in the 200 MPH Club.