Automotive News Digest Week Ending August 17, 2019 - Compiled By Executive Producer Larry Nutson
The Week's Auto News Nuggets: Vette Prices; Vette Crash; No EV Subsidies No EV Sales In China; AutoPaxcific Best Cars; BMW EV Induction Charging; Dream Cruise Today; 69th Pebble Beach Concours; Ford Seatbelt Recall; Fast Cars More Fast Driver Tickets; Beetle Sunshine Tour
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Nutson's Automotive News Review - Week Ending August 17, 2019; Important and Interesting automotive news and back stories in expert-created easy to digest news nuggets.
* Chevrolet announced pricing for the new mid-engine C8 Corvette for the 1LT base trim at $59,995 including the destination charge of $1,095. It's the most affordable mid-engine supercar on the planet. And, it tops out at 194 mph. To get the sub-3 second zero to 60 time you'll need the $5,000 Z51 performance package. Two more trims are offered above the base 1LT: the 2LT at $67,295 and the 3LT at $71,945.
* And in other Corvette news! The first recorded crash of a new mid-engine C8 Corvette has happened. Details are sketchy but the Corvette was a GM teat car on a test drive heading towards Yosemite when the crash occurred involving a compact SUV and a pickup on a windy two lane mountain road. No injuries were reported. We haven't yet heard of an official response from GM.
* Joe White writing for Reuters reports that sales of electric and hybrid vehicles are sensitive to government subsidies, and July sales data show that holds true in China. Sales of "new energy vehicles," a term applied to hybrids and battery electric vehicles in China, dropped 4.7% in July after the government pared back subsidies. Overall vehicle sales in China have been falling all year as the U.S.-China trade war and accelerated emissions regulations have put consumers off balance.
* After surveying more than 50,000 new car and truck owners, AutoPacific announced their 2019 Vehicle Satisfaction Awards. Nissan walked away with the most winning vehicles, while Ram and Lincoln soared to the top of the list overall. The most satisfying vehicle overall is the Lincoln Navigator.
* BMW is expanding its 530e sedan inductive charging pilot program to U.S. The pilot program is available in the state of California for 200 interested, qualifying residential home customers who are able to charge inside an enclosed garage space. Availability is based on 200-equally equipped 530e program lease vehicles. BMW Wireless Charging enables electric energy from a main power supply, via installed GroundPad, to be transmitted to a vehicle’s high-voltage battery without any cables – when the vehicle is positioned over an induction base pad.
* The 25th Woodward Dream Cruise takes place this weekend with Chevrolet, Dodge and Ford having a big presence. Chevrolet will have the C8 Corvette on display, Dodge will debut the 717-horsepower 50th-anniversary edition of the Charger Daytona, and Ford unveiled its new NASCAR Infinity Series Mustang race car, will display 1,000 vintage Mustangs, have its full Ford Performance line-up on display and even have the Bronco Club on hand.
* The 69th Pebble Beach Concours and Monterey Car Week is happening on the left-coast. Rolls- Royce, Infiniti and Aston-Martin are presenting special vehicle collections. Car collectors worldwide will enjoy features celebrating the Bentley Centennial, the Zagato Centennial, Bugatti Race & Touring Cars and Historic Hot Rod "Cover Cars". At RM Sotheby’s Aston-Martin auction a 1965 Aston DB5 used as a promotional car for the James Bond film, “Thunderball," hammered at $6,385,000 making it the most expensive DB5 ever sold at auction.
* Ford is recalling over 108,000 midsize cars in North America to fix a problem that could stop the seat belts from holding people in a crash. The recall covers certain Ford Fusion and Lincoln MKZ cars from the 2015 model year.
* Guess what cars are in the top 10 list of cars whose drivers have the most speeding tickets, according to a survey by insurance shopping website Insurify. The Subaru WRX, Scion FR-S and Volkswagen GTI are the top three. Ram 2500 pickup, Dodge Dart, Jeep Wrangler Unlimited and Subaru Impreza also make the list. Hyundai Veloster is number ten. I'll bet that jumps higher soon with the new Veloster N now on the market.
An auction screw-up of the first Porsche. Of the three Porsche-designed Type 64s and built in the late 1930s, just one remains. Although technically a Volkswagen and not a Porsche, it eventually became the first car to bear the Porsche name. This car, which some view as the absolute origin of the Porsche sports car story, was to be sold at auction in Monterey for around $20 million. However at the auction there was confusion over bidding on the actual numbers. Was it $30 million or $13 million, or $70 million or $17 million. In the end, amidst boos and shouts bidding was stopped and the first Porsche remains unsold
* This weekend, the 14th annual Beetle Sunshine Tour will once again kick off in Travemünde, Germany. The seaside town is home to the world’s largest Beetle meet-up which is set to welcome over 700 Beetles, from historic Bugs to the latest model. This year’s event is expected to be particularly memorable since VW announced that they would end Beetle production in 2019.
* NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt, Jr, his wife and 1-year-old daughter escaped with minor injuries when their Cessna Citation jet ran off the runway and caught fire at the Elizabethton Municipal Airport in Tennessee. The pilots also escaped serious injury. Only Earnhardt, Jr was taken to a hospital for treatment of cuts and abrasions. Early NTSB reports say the plane made a hard landing, bounced and the landing gear collapsed causing the crash.