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Auto Industry Analysis Moves to Edmunds.com

By Jeff Hester December 14, 2011
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Thank you for your interest in Edmunds.com's automotive industry news and analysis. AutoObserver.com is being integrated into a new area of Edmunds.com. Analysis now can be found at http://www.edmunds.com/industry-center/analysis/. To stay connected via social media as well, please follow Edmunds.com on Twitter@edmunds and fan Edmunds.com on... more

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Doors Open This Week On New-Look Tokyo Motor Show

By Peter Nunn November 28, 2011

It's makeover time for the Tokyo Motor Show, the biennial showcase for Japan's auto industry which opens its doors to the media on Wednesday. A new venue, a new time slot and a whole new look are part the revamp designed to put this once-stellar auto show back on the map. Long one of the industry's A-list international auto shows, on a par with Detroit, Geneva and Frankfurt, the Tokyo Show has faced tough times of late. Strong competition from the big China shows in Beijing and Shanghai has cramped its style, as have other “emerging-market” auto shows in more

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The Ten Frankfurt-Show Cars That Matter

By Bill Visnic September 22, 2011

The Frankfurt auto show offered some of the never-gonna-happen eye candy expected of a top-tier international auto show, but there was an outsized dose of concept and production vehicles with heavyweight implications for a global industry in deep and hurried transition. With a few exceptions, Germany’s biannual auto show was all business: the vehicles on Frankfurt’s turntables present tangible insight to how automakers intend to mesh the customer’s perennial desire for speed, power and elegance with rapidly greening regulatory dictates. And, of course, there is a widening part of the buying public that finds economy and efficiency as alluring more

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GM, SAIC To Develop Electric Cars For China

By Michelle Krebs September 20, 2011

General Motors and its Chinese partner SAIC Motor Corp. have agreed to co-develop vehicle architecture and components for electric cars in China. GM Vice Chairman Steve Girsky said in a conference call from Shanghai Tuesday that the vehicles the companies will develop will be pure electric, not range extended like the Chevrolet Volt. They will be dedicated EVs and not a current model converted to be electric. Both GM and SAIC will have their own versions of the new EV. He refused to reveal timing of their introduction and would not reveal the investment being made in the project, more

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Beijing Gives Nissan OK To Export Leaf To China

By Scott Doggett September 15, 2011

Nissan Motor Co. has received permission from Beijing to sell its Leaf (above) battery-electric vehicle (BEV) in China and is prepared to do so, the head of the company's Chinese venture said Wednesday. Speaking with reporters at Nissan's headquarters in Yokohama, Japan, Kimiyasu Nakamura, president of Dongfeng Motor Co., said Nissan will be the first to import an electric vehicle to China. However, Nakamura did not say when the imports will begin. Nissan, Japan's second-largest automaker, currently builds the sleek four-door hatchback in Oppama, Japan, and plans to add output in Tennessee and the U.K. "If sales numbers of more

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Electrics Out Front At Frankfurt Motor Show

By Bill Visnic September 9, 2011

During the September 12-13 press preview days of the Frankfurt Motor Show, there will be more German-brand concepts and production cars than you can shake a notebook at, with most of them having some sort of environmental slant. But this being Germany’s “home” auto show and all, there’s more than a smattering of high-performance candy mixed in with the now-requisite green granola. Frankfurt’s concept cars can be expected to generate a critical mass of attention because the world absolutely wants inside the head of the German automakers, in particular, to know their thinking on how ever-present environmental pressures will more

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China Appears Poised To Dump Support For EVs

By Scott Doggett September 8, 2011

Beijing's strategy to electrify the country's automobiles has been extremely ambitious. For more than two years, the Chinese government has tried to leapfrog years of incremental fuel-economy improvements in conventional gas- and diesel-engine technology by massively supporting the development of battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) and plug-in hybrid-electric vehicles (PHEVs). Its often-stated goal: No fewer than 1 million electric vehicles on China's roads by 2015 and 5 million by 2020. But Beijing appears to be on the verge of doing a U-turn on its support for plug-in vehicles, in light of the fact they have proven enormously unpopular despite hefty government more

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Five Million Plug-In Cars Sold By 2017 Pike Says

By Danny King August 24, 2011

More than 5 million battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) and plug-in hybrid-electric vehicles (PHEVs) will be sold globally during the next six years as a combination of rising fuel prices, more stringent greenhouse-gas standards and government incentives will offset the effect of new alternative-fuel vehicles taking longer to get to the market than previously expected, Pike Research said in a report released this week. The U.S. is expected to surpass Japan as the largest producer of plug-in electric vehicles (BEVs and PHEVs) in 2013, while China is slated to become the largest consumer market of plug-in EVs by 2016. more

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Marchionne Warns On China And EVs

By Bill Visnic August 4, 2011

Prior to raising a Defcon-4 media uproar with an off-handed remark insinuating he had set a retirement date, Sergio Marchionne, CEO for Fiat S.p.A. and Chrysler Group LLC, told a packed house at the Center for Automotive Research (CAR) Management Briefing Seminars Wednesday that the European market is “halfway house” of political, industrial and economic futility, over-emphasizing electric vehicles as a singular solution to alternative propulsion is a mistake and that a strengthening Chrysler is “regaining the faith of the public at large – and, more importantly, our customers.” more

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Japanese Automakers Struggle Through First Half

By Peter Nunn July 28, 2011

Six months down, the second half of 2011 has just got to be better. For Japan’s hard pressed group of automakers, that has to be the belief right now, coming off an extraordinarily harsh 2011 first half that has seen production, sales and profits pushed off course as never before. The numbers for January through June are now in and, of course, reflect the massive disruption caused by the terrible March 11 earthquake and tsunami in northern Japan. It’s not every day, for instance, that you see Toyota’s global production plummet more than 20 percent year-on-year, to 3.38 million more

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