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Automobiles and Components

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  • 9-Year Auto Loans?! 'Crazy' But True! Wednesday, 5 Mar 2008 | 10:56 AM ET

    Here's something that should make you realize what crazy times we are living in: 9-year auto loans are popping up around the country. That's right, it wasn't a typo. Nine years! 108 months! Almost a third of the time used to pay off a conventional mortgage!

  • GM Idles 7 Plants in Wake of American Axle Strike Tuesday, 4 Mar 2008 | 10:10 AM ET
    General Motors

    General Motors said Tuesday it will close a seventh facility next week as the impact from a strike against American Axle & Manufacturing continues to widen for the No. 1 U.S. automaker.

  • Despite Gloom, Geneva Motor Show Offers Some Hope Tuesday, 4 Mar 2008 | 9:44 AM ET

    Amid the gloomy comments from auto executives at the Geneva Motor Show, the unveilings of several important new models are being overshadowed. Take the new Ford Fiesta. This compact car is being sold in Europe, but the design cues and architecture behind this car will be the underpinnings of compact cars the automaker will roll out in the U.S. in the future.

  • Auto Sales Numbers Are Just Plain UGLY Monday, 3 Mar 2008 | 2:58 PM ET
    Ugly Auto Sales

    We knew they would be bad, and they were. In fact, February auto sales make it clear, the consumer is tired, nervous, worried: you-fill-in-the-adjective. Look at the numbers: GM down  16.7 percent (including trucks down more than 22 percent)

  • Ford to Cut Shifts, Lay Off Some 2,500 Workers Monday, 3 Mar 2008 | 12:00 PM ET
    Ford announced today that it is cutting production by 21% resulting in downtime at the assembly plant in St. Thomas Ontario on Friday Aug. 18, 2006. Ford Motor Co. announces sharp cuts in its North American production that would force it to partially shut down plants in the U.S. and Canada in the fourth quarter. (AP Photo/Canadian Press, Geoff Robins)

    Ford Motor said Monday it would eliminate shifts at four U.S. plants and lay off some 2,500 workers -- or almost 5 percent of its remaining work force -- as part of an effort to cut costs and return to profitability next year.

  • Banks Lead Euro Stocks Lower; HSBC Gains Monday, 3 Mar 2008 | 11:56 AM ET

    European stocks closed lower across the board Monday, despite recovering form earlier lows, with banks suffering the worst of the selling on continued concerns over the state of the U.S. economy.

  • Auto Sales Number Could Tell Us How Bad Industry Is Monday, 3 Mar 2008 | 10:23 AM ET

    Later today, the February auto sales will come out. By all accounts, the numbers will likely be awful. Not just lower, but in the words of one industry veteran, "terrible." We'll have to wait and see what the actual numbers are, but I won't be surprised to see industry sales down 10 percent.

  • Porsche to Get Majority of Volkswagen Monday, 3 Mar 2008 | 9:37 AM ET

    German sports car maker Porsche will increase its 31 percent voting stake in Volkswagen to a majority but does not intend to merge the two carmakers, Porsche said on Monday.

  • Volkswagen Increases Scania Stake to 68.6% Monday, 3 Mar 2008 | 4:45 AM ET

    German carmaker Volkswagen said on Monday it would raise its stake in Swedish truckmaker Scania to 68.6 percent, a move that may lead to a merger of Scania and German truckmaker MAN.

  • New Cars: What They REALLY Cost You Friday, 29 Feb 2008 | 9:43 AM ET
    Woman looks at new Toyota Camry on dealer lot

    We've all done it. When we've gone looking to buy a new car, we get a price on a model or two and then we think to ourselves, "Ok, THIS is what this car is going to cost me." Now we may need to re-think that approach.

  • They've done it again. The Asian automakers, especially the Japanese dominate the latest Consumer Reports survey (subscription needed for full reports) on auto reliability. Of the 33 models CR picked to be "most reliable," 23 are from Japanese automakers. Some, like the Toyota Prius, we've come to expect to see on the list.

  • Auto Reliability: Who Makes The "Better" Cars? Thursday, 28 Feb 2008 | 8:29 AM ET

    Later today we'll find out if the time, money and effort the Big 3 have put into building more reliable cars and trucks has paid off. Consumer Reports releases its 2008 auto reliability survey and the question for many is: Are the Big 3 finally getting their act together?

  • Ford to Make Fewer Cars in the First Quarter Thursday, 28 Feb 2008 | 4:52 AM ET
    Ford announced today that it is cutting production by 21% resulting in downtime at the assembly plant in St. Thomas Ontario on Friday Aug. 18, 2006. Ford Motor Co. announces sharp cuts in its North American production that would force it to partially shut down plants in the U.S. and Canada in the fourth quarter. (AP Photo/Canadian Press, Geoff Robins)

    Ford Motor expects to produce 685,000 vehicles in North America during the first quarter of 2008, 55,000 fewer than the first three months of last year, the company said in a report filed Wednesday with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

  • American Axle/UAW Strike: Why It's NOT A Big Deal Wednesday, 27 Feb 2008 | 12:22 PM ET

    Usually, when the United Auto Workers strike it's pretty big news. Usually, when the picket lines form, Detroit gets nervous. Usually, when the rhetoric heats up, so do the heart rates of executives running the Big 3. Not this time.

  • Toyota to Boost Japan Output of Lexus Cars Tuesday, 26 Feb 2008 | 10:34 PM ET
    Toyota.

    Toyota Motor will boost production capacity for its Lexus luxury cars in Japan by about 35 percent in 2009 to meet growing demand in emerging countries such as Russia and China, the Nikkei business daily reported on Wednesday.

  • Mid-Size SUVs: The Good And Bad When It Comes To Safety Tuesday, 26 Feb 2008 | 10:25 AM ET

    The newest crash test study of mid-size SUVs has both good and bad news for those who drive these big rigs. And for some HUMMER owners, you have to be wondering if the "safe as a tank" perception some have of your ride is truly deserving.

  • AutoZone Profit Rises as Margins Improve Tuesday, 26 Feb 2008 | 9:46 AM ET

    AutoZone, the largest U.S. auto parts retail chain, posted better-than-expected quarterly earnings on Tuesday, helped by improved profit margins and sales to the commercial sector.

  • Warranties: Now That I've Piqued Your Interest... Monday, 25 Feb 2008 | 4:21 PM ET

    If you've read this blog for some time you know that my grammar (is it it's or its?) is spotty at times, and my use of words is sometimes off. OK way off. Last week, I used the phrase, "it peaked the interest,..", when it should have been "it piqued the interest,...". Several of you caught my screw-up and let me know about it. Guilty as charged.

  • HUMMER Tries New Path In Uphill (Sales) Climb Monday, 25 Feb 2008 | 9:09 AM ET

    OK, it's not as if HUMMER needs our sympathy. The folks running GM's supersized SUV line know they are fighting an uphill battle, trying to grow sales, expand the line-up, and shift HUMMER's image in the face of rising gas prices. But this is HUMMER, even if the execs there feel overmatched, they won't admit it. Nor should they.

  • Storm Snarls Northeast Air Travel Friday, 22 Feb 2008 | 10:47 AM ET

    A snowstorm blanketed the city early Friday, causing headaches for commuters and delaying flights at the region's major airports.

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