Tag: Terrain

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The New Mitsubishi Look – Lewisville Mitsubishi

Doug Baum's New Mitsubishi Store is a Guerilla Marketing Machine
To increase brand image and customer satisfaction, Mitsubishi is rolling out a dealer visual identity program. The prototype store is Autoplex Mitsubishi in Lewisville Texas.

C8 Chevrolet Corvette

C8 Reveal is Car Story du Jour - Impressive Mechanicals
Chevrolet revealed its all new 2020 C8 Chevrolet Corvette at a live-streamed event in Tustin, CA. The mid-engined sports car is an impressive engineering achievement available at an affordable price.
The Ram HD lineup includes six price classes (starting at $33,395 plus $1,695 delivery). The Ram Power Wagon package can be added to any one of them. Ram contends the Ram Power Wagon is the "Most Off-Road Capable Pickup" available.

Flint, Michigan:  Chevrolet is bringing the fight to Ford’s Super Duty line-up with the all new 2020 Silverado HD pickup line.  In a reveal at GM’s Flint heavy duty truck assembly plant Chevrolet showcased the new 2020 Silverado HD.  

A week earlier Ford showcased its Super Duty freshening for 2020 and it was impressive.  In essence, the changes to the Chevrolet are an attempt to catch up with the Ford Super Duty that was launched in 2016.  

Ford showed an all new 7.3L big block V8 added to the Super Duty.  Chevrolet showed an all new 6.6L small block V8.  It has an impressive 401HP and 464 lb-ft of torque. Ford announced it was applying its 10-speed automatic transmission to the Super Duty.  Chevrolet continues with its tried and proven 6-speed automatic.

2020 Silverado HD Larger [...]

2020 Ford Super Duty gets a mid-cycle freshening that is intended to keep the product ahead of heavy duty competition from GM and FCA's Ram. GM and Ram products launch early in 2019 with Ford launching later in the year.

Honda PassportPassport Fills Excess Capacity at Honda’s Lincoln Alabama Plant  Honda realized it had a gap in its crossover SUV lineup. They were losing customers who wanted mid-size XSUVs (crossover sport utility vehicles) but did not want seven passenger capacity.They estimate they have lost at least 35,000 sales to competitors every year they did not have a competitive 5-passenger, two-row crossover SUV in their product mix.  Hence the all new 2019 Honda Passport.

Derivative of Popular Pilot Crossover SUV  Honda’s usual methodological approach led to the development of the all new Passport – a five-passenger derivative of the popular Pilot 7-passenger XSUV.

In terms of big SUV programs, Honda has taken a very efficient approach. Think of the 2019 Honda Passport as a Pilot from the C-Pillar forward. Passport’s wheelbase is equal to the Pilot’s. Losing the [...]

Ford SUVs are the key to future success in Ford’s business.  As Ford leaves the sedan (not car) business, they have given the first glimpse of their all new 2020 Explorer Crossover SUV (XSUV). The new Explorer replaces the fifth generation D4 platform Explorer with a totally modern platform. The all new body is unitized just like its predecessor but it is now rear wheel drive giving up its previous front wheel drive architecture. Explorer looks much like its predecessors with evolutionary, but modern, styling. Rear wheel drive lets its proportions be much more contemporary.

Features will be a major part of the Explorer story going forward.  The new Explorer XSUV gains the Ford CoPilot 360+ suite of safety and driver assistance features. When launched, Explorer arguably will be the most feature laden vehicle offered by Ford.

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What better place to experience Toyota’s all-new RAV4 than in Carmel-by-the-Sea, California?  Staging out of the Carmel Valley Ranch, Toyota gave journalists and analysts the chance to drive the all-new RAV4.  As Toyota’s top-seller in 2017 with about 400,000 units sold, Toyota cannot afford to make a mistake that would damage its sales potential.  The RAV4 started the XSUV (crossover SUV) category in 1996.  The 2019 version is the fifth generation of RAV4.

TNGA-K Platform:  From a product standpoint the all-new RAV4 is a significant upgrade to its predecessor.  Riding on Toyota’s new TNGA-K (Toyota New Global Architecture) platform, the RAV4 rides and handles very well.  The body is tight and the ride is quiet – at least [...]

Driving the new Cadillac XT4 on the excellent country roads around Seattle and Bainbridge Island revealed a vehicle that is well conceived and well put-together.

Let’s Talk About the Styling: Cadillac designers and engineers have developed a vehicle with outstanding proportions using an all new platform. They have pushed the wheels out to the corners of the vehicle so the stance of the XT4 is great. Some small XSUVs seem too narrow and too tall. The XT4 looks wide enough to have a very purposeful appearance.

The styling cues are pretty distinctive. Cadillac is known for unique “light pipe” daylight running lights. The XT4 goes the typical light pipe one better. An eyebrow flowing towards the grille from the vertical light pipe gives XT4 a hard-to-miss look. Carried over into the vertical taillamps, XT4 takes advantage of new LED lighting technology. While XT4 looks modern, it does not rely on an extremely fast windshield to [...]

Over the past decades, the American auto industry has “atomized” with more and more new car and light truck models being added to the lineups each year.  The reason for this rapid addition of nameplates – atomization – has been an attempt by auto designers and marketers to provide products targeted to much more finely defined product niches.  Consumers demand more and more focused products and today’s automotive consumer research can identify exactly what those consumers want.  Current product development techniques allow vehicles to be developed more quickly and efficiently than in the past.  So, why not develop a vehicle targeted at each well-defined buyer group?

17-million Sales Years Not Sustainable

During the ‘90s, a good year was 15 million car and light truck sales.  By early in the first decade of the 2000s, the industry was expecting 17 million units per year.  Companies began adding more and more nameplates to take advantage of these [...]

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