US auto giant General Motors has officially announced the repayment of its $5.8 Billion loan by the end of June ‘10. The loan is from the U.S Treasury and Export Development Canada, both of which currently hold Equity Shares in the company.
The company that emerged from bankruptcy in July 2009 also stated that once the repayments are complete “the focus will be to upgrade the plants in Detroit and Kansas to build their Next Generation- Chevrolet Malibu.”
The news of the repayment was made on the Wall Street Journal website on Tuesday April 20th by the CEO of GM, Ed Whitacre, as he announced “Our ability to pay back these loans less than a year after emerging from bankruptcy is a sign that our plan for building a new GM is working.”
The Detroit- Hamtramck and Kansan City factories will be updated with an investment of $ 275 million. The update will enable the plants to manufacture the Next Generation Malibu slated for release next year. On Wednesday, Mr.Whitacre addressing the Kansas City plant said that it will receive $136 million of the investment as the plant will be the prime manufacturing site for the Malibu.
As per the Automotive News Data Center, the new Chevy Malibu has a 53 day supply and Buick LaCrosse a 43 day supply, and the Kansas plant is working 3 shifts and on Saturdays to build both the cars which began production in April to maintain a 60 Day supply level as recommended by analysts.
The Buick Lucerne and Cadillac DTS sedans currently being produced at the Detroit Hamtramck plant will be downsized this year to accommodate the production of the Chevrolet Volt plug-in sedan, to be released in the fourth quarter of ’10. The Hamtramck plant investment of $121 will assist in the production of the Malibu in period of spike in demand.
The most awaited and important event on China ‘s automotive calendar is just nearing. The Auto China 2010 will begin Friday, April 12, in Beijing . And almost all the automakers, both domestic and global, have said what they will put on display. And Of course each and everyone of the automakers is vying for its share of the limelight. This may be the toughest contest of the year for the Geely Holdings and General Motors Company. Both of these two companies will display more on their products in the show more than other automakers.
And in detail, Geely Holdings will display almost 39 models of their products and General Motors will display 28 products. They will also show more new models than most other automakers. Geely says it will put 11 all new models on stage at the event. Meanwhile General Motors has announced it will show 6 new models for the first time in front of a Chinese audience.
The General Motors vehicles are Chevy Volt MPV5 concept, the Cadillac Concept, the Cadillac XTS concept, the Chevy Aveo RS concept, the two-box Chevy New Sail and the new Chevy Spark. Last week Geely held an event in Beijing with several company executives taking turns to explain to reporters the long list of new models and power train technologies their company will display at the show. General Motors China convened reporters from across the country in Shanghai for a briefing on its middle and long term growth plans for China .
For sure, Geely Holdings didn’t start making cars until the late of 1990s. So it goes without saying that it still can’t mount serious competition for General Motors. With most of its products selling less than 70,000 yuan ($10,248), the company still confines itself to the low end of the domestic market. This will change very soon. In addition to rolling out more expensive models under its own brand, the private Chinese company wants to launch more Volvo models in China after it completes the purchase of the Swedish brand from Ford Motor Co in the third quarter.
With a brand that is now a byword for excellence in safety in its stable, Geely holdings should become a rival to reckon with for global players including General Motors.
General Motors unveiled the Chevrolet Cruze ECO at New York Auto Show. The Chevrolet Cruze ECO is a high-efficiency model which is powered by a 1.4-liter Ecotec turbocharged engine equipped with variable valve timing that’s coupled with a six-speed manual transmission. A six-speed automatic will also be offered as an option. The company estimates the Chevrolet Cruze ECO will give a 40 mpg fuel consumption on the highway.
The Chevrolet Cruze ECO comes with a lower front grille air shutter that closes at high speeds to improve aerodynamics and a lower front air dam extension. The Chevrolet Cruze ECO also features a lowered ride height, 17-inch lightweight aluminum wheels and ultra-low rolling resistance 17-inch Goodyear tires.
The Eco achieves greater fuel economy using a number of features that enhance its aerodynamics, minimize weight and reduce rolling resistance. The Chevrolet says the Cruze ECO will accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in just 10 seconds with the manual gearbox and in 0 to 60mph in just 9 seconds with the automatic gearbox.
Also debuting in New York will be a sporty variant of the Cruze, the RS model, which is essentially a styling package. It will be available on the upscale Cruze LT and LTZ trim levels. It features special bumpers, side skirt, a rear spoiler and an instrument cluster with chrome accent rings.
The Chevrolet Cruze ECO price and availability will be announced at a later date and the Cruze Eco will be available in the fourth quarter of 2010.
Nissan Motor Co. will sell the Leaf electric car for a base price of $32,780 in the United States and begin taking orders on April 20. When combined with a $7,500 federal tax credit, the Leaf will be priced at $25,280, the automaker said in a statement today. State and local credits can further reduce the cost to consumers, Nissan said. Early on today, the automaker also said it would sell the battery-powered Leaf hatchback starting off at 3.76 million yen ($40,640) in Japan, where it is also counting on government subsidies to slash the cost to consumers. Nissan said it aims to sell 6,000 Leaf cars, its first mass-volume all-electric model, in Japan for the year ending in March 2011. The company will start taking orders for the model April 1 in Japan, with the first delivery expected in December. After accounting for Japanese government subsidies, Nissan said the net cost to consumers to buy a new Leaf would be near 2.99 million yen ($32,373). The Leaf pricing also represents a premium over established, combustion-engine powered small sedans, such as the Honda Civic and Toyota Corolla. Analysts have said the premium reflects the cost of developing and producing the Leaf’s lithium-ion battery pack. The cost of batteries and the reluctance of consumers to pay more upfront for fuel-saving technology are seen as the major hurdles to mass-market adoption of electric vehicles. Toyota Motor Corp.’s gasoline-electric Prius hybrid, now in its third generation, has a base model starting price at just over 2 million yen ($22,195) in Japan. After trailing rivals Toyota Motor and Honda Motor in the hybrid field, Japan’s No.3 automaker has bet heavily on pure electric vehicles along with partner Renault SA of France. Nissan has said it expects that 10 percent of the world’s auto market will be electric vehicles by 2020, a ratio at the top of industry projections. The automaker has also announced a series of partnerships with utilities and government agencies in the United States and Europe where it believes it has a chance of seizing market leadership. The five-passenger Leaf is designed to provide a range of about 100 miles. Nissan has developed the battery pack for the Leaf with NEC Corp., so that it can be recharged overnight on a 220-volt connection. While skeptics abound, almost all major automakers are working on developing battery-run cars for use mainly in urban areas, to meet stricter emissions and mileage regulations being introduced around the world.
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The 2010 Chevrolet Silverado 2 out of 8 full size pickup trucks. This ranking is based on our analysis of 65 published reviews and test drives of Chevy Silverado 1500. The 2010 Chevrolet Silverado pickup trucks haven’t change significantly for 2010 model year, but Chevy tweaked some of the truck’s features and turned a couple of options into standard equipment.
The 2010 model still offers a staggering number of engines, trim levels, bed lengths, suspension configurations and other options. The Chevrolet Silverado has comfort and practicality in a rugged package. The Silverado equipped with 4.8L, 5.3L and 6.2L engines. The 4.8L and 5.3L engines have variable valve timing and also improves the feature, performance and fuel economy. The regular cab and extended cab trucks with 5.3L V-8 engines are equipped with a 6speed automatic transmission.
3.08 axle ratio and fuel saver mode are standard with Silverado trucks equipped with a 5.3L V-8 engine. The features are Side curtain air bags, seat mounted side air bags are standard on all 1500 Silverado trucks, the USB connectivity too on all radios except the base model, which will play the audio files through the audio system, charges battery for some handheld devices.
The Silverado 1500 is available with two-wheel or four-wheel drive; with a short, standard or long bed; with a regular, crew or extended cab, and in Work Truck, LT and LTZ trim levels. Reviewers enjoyed the Silverado’s capabilities and comfort regardless of which combination of the award winning truck they drove.
Drivers appreciate the Silverado’s gas mileage, which is among the best in the class. Interior door trim has been changed in this model. A rearview camera is available on more models. StabiliTrak electronic control system is now standard on all Silverado 1500 trucks. It’s hard to find a bad review of the Chevrolet Silverado because most reviewers say it’s hard to find a competitor with it.
he 2010 Chevrolet Equinox is redesigned, A new look with freshened styling, new engines, and some new features. This 4-door SUV seats five and comes in 4 levels which are LS, 1LT, 2LT and LTZ trim levels. Chevrolet Equinox offers a choice of two engines. A 182-hp with 2.4liter 4 cylinder is standard. And a 264-hp with 3.0liter V6 is optional on the 1LT, 2LT and LTZ.
Both the engines team with a 6-speed automatic transmission. The front-wheel drive and all wheel drive are offered on all models. The important safety features includes ABS, traction control, an antiskid system, front side airbags and curtain side airbags.
Chevrolet calls the Equinox a compact crossover, but when you look at its dimensions, this CUV is in many respects more mid-size than compact. At 187.8 inches long. Chevy’s rationale for calling this a compact is the 72.5 inch width, which is 0.5 inches less than the RAV4 and two inches less than the Edge. So it’s really a “tweener” of sorts. However you define it, though, the Equinox is especially roomy relative to competitors.
The features available are remote engine start, a navigation system, wireless cell-phone link, DVD entertainment, a hard drive for storing digital audio files, a rearview camera and a power liftgate. Chevy Equinox uses Chevy’s MultiFlex rear seat that can be moved 8 inches fore and aft to better accommodate different storage and passenger needs.
The Chevrolet Equinox 2010 had the road test which includes a full evaluation from the inside out. The test is not only for engine and handling performance for 2010 Chevy Equinox, but also the interior cabin and cargo space. The test results ends in positive way which helps the customers to decide if the 2010 Chevrolet Equinox is right for you.
The 2010 Chevrolet Equinox includes detailed information on everything from fuel mileage to seating capacity. NHTSA crash test scores for the 2010 Chevrolet Equinox are provided as well as manufacturer warranty information. The results based on a 35MPH frontal crash and 38.5MPH side crash. Results are reported in a range of one to five stars, with five starts indicating the best crash protection for vehicles within the same weight class. This test used driver and passenger belts and airbags.
The 2010 Chevrolet Malibu ranks 5 out of 21 affordable midsize cars. This ranking is based on our analysis of the 71 published reviews and test drives of the chevrolet Malibu , and our analysis of reliability and safety data.
The Chevrolet Malibu has enjoyed a ranking near the top of the midsize car class since a 2008 redesign. With a distinctive, two tone cabin more stylish than the Honda Accord or Toyota Camry, a balanced ride and excellent fuel economy, the Chevy Malibu is one of the best family cars available.
When the Chevy Malibu was redesigned for 2008, the automotive press heaped awards on the car. It was one of the car and Driver’s 10Best, North American Car of the year at 2008 North American International Auto Show, and one of the Automobile Magazine’s 2008 Automobile All-Stars.
The 2010 Chevrolet Malibu model has changed little from that wildly successful car. The 2.4L four cylinder engine offered on base models can now use E85 as well as regular gasoline. A hybrid edition has been discontinued. With its crisp, tailored lines, the Chevrolet Malibu looks more like a luxury sedan than a fleet car. And along with the upscale styling is a similarly handsome cabin in terms of materials and build quality. Two-tone interior schemes, even on base models, further the effect.
The 2010 Chevy Malibu is available in four trims: base LS, midlevel 1LT and 2LT and luxury LTZ. Even the LS comes with full power features, air-conditioning, satellite radio, side curtain airbags, traction control and OnStar. The LT versions upgrade with stability control, alloy wheels and (on the 2LT) heated seats and more power features. Highlights of the LTZ include foglamps, 18-inch alloys, leather seating and an upgraded audio system.
Once an afterthought for import shoppers, the Malibu should now be a consideration for Accord and Camry shoppers. It’s not the only domestic midsize car buyers should consider, either an improved Ford Fusion is now competition for the top of the class as well.
General Motors today completed the sale of its Swedish Saab brand to Dutch luxury sports car maker Spyker Cars NV, marking the first successful sale of one of its four unwanted U.S. brands.
The transaction combines Saab Automobile and its 3,400 employees with Spyker Cars and its 110-plus workers under parent company Spyker Cars NV.
“The focus as of today will be on getting back to business,” Jan Ake Jonsson, CEO of Saab Automobile, told reporters today. Executives want to refocus the identity of the Saab brand “to create an innovative, free-thinking company based on our Swedishness,” he said.
The sale saves Saab from what appeared to be doom after Swedish supercar maker Koenigsegg Group AB backed out of a planned
purchase in November. But Spyker, whose logo bears a Latin phrase that translates, “For the tenacious, no road is impossible” – made an offer during Saab’s wind down.
“Saab’s future is now secure,” Spyker CEO Victor Muller said in a statement. “We will be concentrating all of our efforts into reviving Saab and transforming it into a sustainable and profitable company with the confidence to be bold.”
Finally after some negotiations with GM CEO Ed Whitacre, Spyker agreed to buy Saab. Completion of the Saab deal leaves GM facing a Feb. 28 deadline to complete a planned sale of Hummer to China ‘s Sichuan Tengzhong Heavy Industrial Machinery Co. Saturn and Pontiac are being shut down.
Spyker CEO Victor Muller had already secured the $50 million needed to close the deal with GM, with the remaining $24 million due in July. Spyker is paying GM $74 million in cash and $326 million in redeemable preference shares.
Saab’s revival centers on a new 9-5 that launches this year, the arrival of the 9-4X crossover in 2011 and the debut of a new 9-3 in 2012. Saab’s production- and intelligence-sharing agreement with GM lasts through the introduction of the new 9-3, Jonsson said.
Have you been trying to drown out the noise of the road by turning up your music or convincing yourself that it isn’t “that” loud? Well, there are ways to reduce the amount of road noise in your car.
The first thing to do is… to determine the source of the noise. Some common causes are tires that create a lot of excess noise on certain types of pavement and engine and exhaust systems that have not been repaired or have been improperly modified. We would be happy to service your vehicle and find the cause of the extra noise. If they are the true cause of the problem, then no amount of simple do-it-yourself fixes can truly and completely “cover up” the noise.
If you want to take it one step further, you can purchase insulation products that can be installed underneath the carpeting and seats of the vehicle. These products are often called, Heat, Noise and Sound Insulation and are fairly inexpensive – one roll often costs less than $30. This project can be a bit time consuming, so you may want to reserve a Saturday afternoon to handle the task.
So whether you want to purchase quieter tires, or try an option like cloth floor mats, there are plenty of possibilities for every budget. Just be sure your expectations are in check, some vehicles are naturally louder than others, either from age or design – while others might be easier to fix.
However, if you have identified that your noise is just a symptom of the general operation of the vehicle, then there are things you can do yourself. First, purchase cloth or carpeted floor mats. These will help insulate some of the noise the driver experiences. Extra layers of fabric or insulation absorb noise, so cloth seat covers can also help to absorb a bit of noise.