Home » Toyota Stops Selling Ten Different Vehicles Over More Testing Shenanigans

Toyota Stops Selling Ten Different Vehicles Over More Testing Shenanigans

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It’s not the crime, it’s the coverup. But sometimes it’s also the crime. Toyota was already in deep trouble after admitting that the company’s subsidiary, Daihatsu, spent decades faking safety test results. Now, Toyota is admitting there are some “irregularities” from its engine-making subsidiary involving that company’s testing. Yikes.

Also yikes is the the potential 2024 for General Motors, which is facing higher union-related production costs and a questionable market for its new EV products. Maybe things will be better for Stellantis, a company that has seven different brands in the United States for… reasons. That’s a lot of brands. Is that too many brands? Ford, by comparison, has two brands.

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At least things are sunny in Hyundai-ville as that automaker leapfrogs over some more established players in the United States.

Happy Monday, it’s time for The Morning Dump.

What Is Happening At Toyota?

2018 Lexus Dealer Meeting Akio Toyoda 9169493a1f2a50f6699521f904041ddf3d67c8d3 600x400

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We ended December with the Daihatsu Charade, which we’re dubbing the scandal that involved the wholly-owned Toyota brand admitting it faked safety tests for its vehicles for decades, which resulted in the company stopping the sales of its cars in some markets and halting production in Japan.

At the time, it seemed like the problems were limited to Daihatsu. That’s clearly not the case, as Toyota had to put out another apology letter this morning and admit that its engine-making industrial subsidiary, Toyota Industries Corporation (TICO), had also engaged in testing “irregularities” during the certification stage of its engines.

The investigation found that irregularities occurred during the horsepower output testing for the certification of three diesel engine models for automobiles that Toyota had commissioned to TICO. During certification testing, the horsepower output performance of engines was measured using ECUs with software that differed from that used for mass production so that results could measure to make values appear smoother with less variation. Ten vehicle models are using the affected engines globally, including six in Japan.

We have re-verified the mass-produced products manufactured at the plant and confirmed that the affected engines and vehicles meet engine performance output standards. Therefore, there is no need to stop using the affected engines or vehicles. However, we deeply apologize to our customers who have been supporting affected vehicles and waiting for a long time, and also to all other stakeholders for the significant inconvenience and concern that this has caused.

Obviously, diesel engine certification cheating is something that seemingly every major automaker has admitted to at some point, so this shouldn’t be that much of a shock, but the timing is pretty bad, as Toyota admits:

We recognize the gravity of the fact that the repeated certification irregularities at TICO, following those at Daihatsu, have shaken the very foundations of the company as an automobile manufacturer.

Why does this keep happening? This announcement conforms to a theory that I had about the Daihatsu issue, which is that pressure at the top to get more things done without a lot more in terms of resources created an environment where cheating was preferable to failure.

Toyota Stop Shipment List

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Here’s the full list of vehicles, which doesn’t include vehicles sold here but does include European models, including the Toyota Hilux and Land Cruiser 300/LX500d.

What Is Happening At GM?

Investor Relations Meeting At Gm Tech Center
Photo: GM

General Motors is going to talk about its 2023 financials tomorrow and, of course, its plans for 2024. We’re already getting some previews like this provocatively titled piece from Reuters: “GM looks for a road out of Tesla’s shadow”

It’s a suggestive title, but there’s some logic to it. Obviously, Tesla sells way more EVs than everyone else in the United States. Tesla CEO Elon Musk has also suggested that 2024 is going to be a slower year for Tesla sales.

This means there’s both a problem (smaller market share) for GM and an opportunity (potential consumers for GM’s Ultium products).

I’m not sure it’s a make-or-break year for GM, but it’s a damn important one as it already announced a share buyback and dividend program meant to boost its stock price. I was critical of that move, largely because Ultium has had problems and it does seem like 2024 will be a year with downward pressure on prices.

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The question is will the lower prices bring more buyers to the market, thus helping automakers maintain profits at lower margins, or will there be the one-two punch of flat volume and lower prices?

It sounds like, from the Reuters report, that analysts have similar concerns:

Growth in U.S. demand for EVs has shown signs of slowing. Ford (F.N),  has cut production of its F-150 Lightning electric pickup to one shift, and added a shift of production at a factory that builds combustion Bronco SUVs.
Despite the uncertain market outlook, GM is trying to accelerate deliveries of its new generation of EVs in North America after struggling with Ultium battery pack production bottlenecks last year.

I’m excited to drive some Ultium products and see more on the road, whenever that is.

What Is Happening At Stellantis?

Alfa7

Every company that’s a “house of brands” with numerous sub-brands has to ask the same question at some point: Do we need all these brands?

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With Stellantis that’s a fair question right now. When the company was a merger of Fiat and Chrysler (becoming FCA) it made a sort of sense as the company was fairly Italian and Maserati/Alfa/Fiat are important sub-brands. But this newly French-American-Italian thing. IDK.

You want to hear an amazing stat? Can you guess the two Stellantis brands in the United States that have increased sales since the company was formed out of a merger of FCA with PSA (Peugeot) in 2020?

It’s not Jeep. It’s not Dodge. It’s not Ram. It’s definitely not Fiat or Alfa. Freakin’ Chrysler and Maserati have somehow been the only “winners” thus far.

Automotive News has a useful guide to each of the Stellantis U.S. brands and the challenges for them, which are many. Some highlights include Chrysler becoming the company’s “technology adopter and clean mobility brand,” while Fiat will lean on EVs.

The brand with the most potential upside? Probably RAM and its crazy Ramcharger 1500:

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“Ram is brilliant, doing what they’re doing with the new next-generation truck,” Brauer said. “The fact that they’re going to have multiple versions. There’s going to be something for everybody… Every automaker needs to realize there isn’t a single solution for their customers, and the more options they can provide, the better they’re going to do and the more sales they’ll have.”

I am intrigued by the Ram EV + Weirdo Hybrid + Gas Trucks move, but execution is going to be key.

What Is Happening At Hyundai Motor?

Hyundai Santa Fe Nhl Edition

I like to end with good news. Let’s end with good news. Hyundai Motor Company (i.e. Hyundai, Kia, Genesis) is killing the game.

From Cox Automotive:

The South Korean automaker, which posted fourth-quarter and full-year financial results Jan. 25, closed 2023 as the No. 4 automaker in the U.S. as measured by vehicle sales, surpassing Stellantis, Honda and Nissan. In pre-pandemic 2019, the automaker ranked No. 7.

Hyundai Motor closed the year with strong fourth-quarter sales in the U.S. Like the industry in general, the automaker substantially boosted incentives at year-end. However, the year-over-year comparison to 2022 is exaggerated because incentives one year ago were extremely low due to tight inventories caused by the global computer chip shortage. Nearly all automakers posted large year-over-year gains in incentive spending. Hyundai eked out an increase in average transaction prices (ATP), though, like with the entire industry, price growth has vastly slowed as inventory levels increased through 2023.

As LCD Soundsystem’s James Murphy once said:

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“I’m losing my edge to the kids whose footsteps I hear when they get on the decks.”

Ford, Toyota, and GM better pay attention is all I’m saying.

What I’m Listening To While Writing This

“Out in the sticks on Highway 6” always makes me laugh because, for part of my life, I definitely was out there. I wasn’t, however, strapped into a home-brew metal hamster wheel made out of “sucker gauge”. Is “Tres Hombres” by ZZ Top the best blues rock album of the 1970s? Maybe, though I’d accept an argument that “Morrison Hotel” aged better and, of course, it depends on how you categorize “Band of Gypsys.” Still, none of them have such specific Texas touchstones.

The Big Question

Who is going to be ascendant in 2024 and who is going to fall in the automotive brand space?

 

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Vic Vinegar
Vic Vinegar
29 days ago

Wouldn’t Exile on Main Street count as a “blues rock album”? No problem with ZZ Top, but Exile (and Sticky Fingers for that matter) are all time greats.

05LGT
05LGT
30 days ago

I wanted to argue Stevie Ray Vaughan, but since he only had singles in the 70s and didn’t get an “album” out until 83 I will see myself out.

05LGT
05LGT
30 days ago

Whoever brings a BEV CUV with 250+ miles range, decent styling, and they don’t catch fire in garages for the lowest price wins. When I talk to someone who bought a new car they are more likely to have not gone BEV because of price than range.

Cryptoenologist
Cryptoenologist
30 days ago

The whole “F-150 Lightning Demand” issue is Ford’s fault. At launch they had a ton of momentum and huge waiting lists. But they took so long to get people vehicles, while simultaneously increasing the price floor, that people walked away. Many people I know who were considering one are those who actually need a truck, not 100% of the time but on a regular basis(with a farm or a boat that they actually use) but a normal day job they commute to. They were willing to retire their commuter car and their hauler to get a new electric Ford. Then while waiting, they realized they could just keep the old truck and get a nicely equipped electric car. Or, the interest rates made them realize they could hang onto their older vehicle for much longer.

Manwich Sandwich
Manwich Sandwich
30 days ago

As LCD Soundsystem’s James Murphy once said:”

Well there’s the problem right there… he’s using LCDs in a sound system. LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) is used for visual systems, not audio!!!

They need less LCD and more LADSPA!!!!https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LADSPA

Fuzzyweis
Fuzzyweis
30 days ago

I feel like Ford’s still rising with the Bronco/Maverick, and they’ve already put on the brakes for their big EV push, and they’ve got the new Ranger, if they can get their recalls under control.

For decline I’m agreeing with the article, GM was supposed to release 2 EVs last year that doesn’t seem like they did, Equinox and Silverado, and they haven’t really made many Lyriqs, and cancelled the Bolt, and they’re supposed to start selling the Blazer EV too. It shouldn’t all be about EVs, but they hitched their wagon to that train, they don’t have a Bronco or Maverick fighter, the heck are they doing?

Canopysaurus
Canopysaurus
30 days ago

Chrysler and Maserati? Oh boy! Should we be expecting a new TC?

Tres Hombres. Yes!

Geoffrey Reuther
Geoffrey Reuther
30 days ago
Reply to  Canopysaurus

A new TC… which Horseman of the Apocalypse was that one, again? I forget…

Andy Individual
Andy Individual
30 days ago

Stellantis. Where every model is it’s own brand.

Hoonicus
Hoonicus
30 days ago

They are all crap filled suits to paraphrase Matt. I’m all for advancements in efficiency, and PHEVs, and pure EVs seem like the way forward. What I will never buy, is a connected vehicle!, and I damn sure don’t want a “software defined” vehicle! And what the hell is up with that cloud!

Protodite
Protodite
30 days ago
Reply to  Hoonicus

You realize that the connected vehicle, software defined vehicle stuff you mention is inherent in Pure EV, right?

Hoonicus
Hoonicus
30 days ago
Reply to  Protodite

I realize it is ubiquitous! and probably restricts any future purchase to 2015 or older.

Protodite
Protodite
30 days ago
Reply to  Hoonicus

Ah I get you! I misread the intention behind that “pure EVs sound like the way forward” section. Yeah, 2015+ cars are looking awfully bleak as prospects…

Usernametaken
Usernametaken
30 days ago
Reply to  Protodite

It’s not inherent from a purely technological standpoint.

You could easily run an EV with air gapped firmware and controllers while still having a fully connectable infotainment system.

The problem with that system is you can’t collect and monetize data, so it’s not going to happen

Protodite
Protodite
30 days ago
Reply to  Usernametaken

Oh I’m right there with you! My post just skipped to your conclusion haha

Ranwhenparked
Ranwhenparked
30 days ago
Reply to  Usernametaken

Yeah, last time I checked, electric golf carts aren’t sending data back to EZ Go, I don’t see why anything with electric propulsion must absolutely be connected. Electric cars existed for a long time before that technology was even dreamt of

Strangek
Strangek
30 days ago
Reply to  Ranwhenparked

Seems like EZ Go is missing a helluva opportunity!

Cheap Bastard
Cheap Bastard
30 days ago
Reply to  Ranwhenparked

“Yeah, last time I checked, electric golf carts aren’t sending data back to EZ Go”

Jason’s Changli however is a high speed broadband pipeline straight to party HQ in Beijing.

Whether they find anything of value in all that data is highly questionable.

Cerberus
Cerberus
30 days ago
Reply to  Protodite

There’s no reason it has to be other than reasons of control, rent seeking, and forced obsolescence. That the vehicle will need software control is obvious, as it is with any ICE vehicle, but it could all be constrained to the vehicle itself, as it has in ICE cars for decades now.

Protodite
Protodite
30 days ago
Reply to  Cerberus

I can be, but will it actually be? That’s the difference, the way these companies are beginning to operate on data collection, it just seems unlikely

Cerberus
Cerberus
30 days ago
Reply to  Protodite

No, it won’t but that’s the problem with all the so-called green solutions: they take something that can be a huge improvement and go against the entire point of it so that it’s barely an improvement if at all. I had given up building my own car, but (if society stays stable enough) it looks more and more like I’ll be essentially forced to build my own to have something repairable and resilient that’s connected to the road and not the cloud, be it electric or ICE.

My Goat Ate My Homework
My Goat Ate My Homework
30 days ago
Reply to  Protodite

How so?

I mean I get that manufactures appear to be combining EV and Software Defined vehicle development in the same models (most of them). But is it really inherent? I have a Chevy Bolt and it seems like it is NOT software defined, at all. And I’m guessing that is part of what makes it less expensive as it uses a lot of off-the-shelf stuff and they didn’t reinvent the wheel (along with less expensive battery stuff).

Last edited 30 days ago by My Goat Ate My Homework
Fuzzyweis
Fuzzyweis
30 days ago
Reply to  Protodite

I have a Pure EV that’s not connected or software defined. Granted it’s 24 years old, but it’s all electric, factory made, fairly analog. It can be done, it should be done.

Protodite
Protodite
30 days ago
Reply to  Fuzzyweis

That would be nice… but it’s not realistic. I can’t see a company turning that out right now. It’s not inherent by the tech, necessarily, it’s inherent by the way these companies are now operating.

What’s the 24 year old EV??

Data
Data
30 days ago
Reply to  Protodite

If I had to guess, Ford Ranger EV with model years 1998 – 2002.

Fuzzyweis
Fuzzyweis
30 days ago
Reply to  Data

Correct! I did add a Pioneer stereo to it that has gps but if I wanted to could rip that out and put the AM/FM radio only(no cassette even) back in.

Fuzzyweis
Fuzzyweis
30 days ago
Reply to  Protodite

Yep, they are using subscription models to make up for lack of maintenance costs, not just on EVs, but even regular gas powered cars are lasting much longer, need to supplement that income, Onstar, FordPass, Dodge Connect, they all have something now.

Harmanx
Harmanx
30 days ago
Reply to  Fuzzyweis

There are a few EVs still around that are over 100 years old — from decades before there was software.

Drive By Commenter
Drive By Commenter
30 days ago

Carmakers Osborn Effected themselves when they announced transitioning to NACS last year. Anyone interested in non-Tesla EV’s is going to wait for NACS to be rolled into production and for the announced interest rate drops before buying. Having NACS on every EV will make them much more usable on road trips. These things are still way expensive so buying one to use for everything is going to be the way forward for the near future.

Buzz
Buzz
30 days ago

Exactly. Why would I buy a 60k EV right now and have to carry a dongle around forever when I can wait a couple years and get a car with the right port for potentially 10k less if it also has the right battery.

Ben
Ben
30 days ago
Reply to  Buzz

Why would I buy a 60k EV right now and have to carry a dongle around forever

Don’t be silly. Current EVs are not forever cars, you’ll be panting to unload the thing after your second or third $1500 “Ion Flush” service. 😉

Kidding aside, I agree with you. I think a lot of early adopters have been burned by the huge price drops over the past year too and probably aren’t evangelizing EVs quite as much as they used to.

Cool Dave
Cool Dave
30 days ago

I don’t think any brands are really going to crash and burn this next year, hell Mitsubishi is clinging on and people have been writing them off for years.

I think EV demand will plateau and the Korean brands are going to continue to grow which will force domestic (ha, “domestic”) brands to play catch up a bit. I also hope there’s a trend turn towards more practical cars and away from the monstrosities people seem to think they “need” for their everyday life.

Last edited 30 days ago by Cool Dave
Pupmeow
Pupmeow
30 days ago
Reply to  Cool Dave

Yes, I’m sure Americans will suddenly decide that less is more!

Ranwhenparked
Ranwhenparked
30 days ago
Reply to  Pupmeow

It’s happened before, just always after major economic shocks like the late 1950s recession, the 1973 and 1979 oil embargoes, and the late 2000s recession and oil price run-up. Never really lasts though

Dan Parker
Dan Parker
30 days ago
Reply to  Pupmeow

Most likely driven by higher interest rates (or, more accurately, the resulting higher payments) than an actual change in wants, but the effect on the automaker is the same: Less demand for high margin “monstrosities”. At least for while.

Andrew Wyman
Andrew Wyman
30 days ago

Is there a trend among more recent automakers? I feel like there is.
It seems like they struggle to gain traction at the beginning, then quality increases, styling increases and finally they hit peak form. Then they fight like crazy to stay in form, make some weird choices and then hit a malaise era of design again.

All of this to say, that I feel like Kia and Hyundai are hitting peak form!

Last edited 30 days ago by Andrew Wyman
DadBod
DadBod
30 days ago

I don’t really understand GM. There’s something tragic about their strategic blunders. I am rooting for them, though.

Cool Dave
Cool Dave
30 days ago
Reply to  DadBod

You know I hear a lot that whole “a Chevy will run poorly for longer than others will run at all”… maybe they’ve been talking about the company this whole time.

Last edited 30 days ago by Cool Dave
Aaron
Aaron
30 days ago
Reply to  DadBod

GM is an engineering firm and an accounting firm fighting for control of the same company. When one side gets too much sway (usually the latter of the two), some unfortunate things can happen.

Hoonicus
Hoonicus
30 days ago
Reply to  Aaron

I think that the engineer vs. the accountant argument is a bit overblown.
Been twenty years since I had any interaction with GM management, but my impression then was that all managers were competing against each other. Rather than build on, and give credit to past accomplishments, they preferred to discredit, trash what was before. Didn’t see a cohesive endeavor building.

Aaron
Aaron
30 days ago
Reply to  Hoonicus

all managers were competing against each other. Rather than build on, and give credit to past accomplishments, they preferred to discredit, trash what was before.

That’s corporate America as a whole, these days.

Hoonicus
Hoonicus
30 days ago
Reply to  Aaron

Bleak, man. While I’ll concede there is always some of that undertone in competing type A personalities, it shouldn’t devolve into He sucks, I’m Great like politics has. It’s unhealthy, unpleasant, unproductive, and unsustainable.

MrLM002
MrLM002
30 days ago

Subaru only offers 2 new cars with manual transmissions. The BRZ and the WRX.

That means the only transmission option you have for other vehicles is their craptastic CVTs.

And they’ve yet to use Toyota’s planetary e-CVTs from their hybrids which while boring are extremely durable and reliable.

So I’m rooting for Subaru’s fall. Once you take the fun factor out of Subaru you’re stuck with questionable reliability and meh MPG.

My guess is the next generations of all Subarus will use Toyota’s e-CVTs, but said generations are a ways away

DadBod
DadBod
30 days ago
Reply to  MrLM002

The upside of the having one tranny and 2 engines across the board is that a loaded Subaru costs less then a RAV4/CR-V/etc.

10001010
10001010
30 days ago
Reply to  MrLM002

I don’t get the hate for the CVT in an economy crossover. It does just fine in my wife’s Crosstrek because we drive it like an econobox. I wouldn’t want a CVT in a BRZ or WRX because those are driven more aggressively, but in a boring crossover it does just fine.

My Goat Ate My Homework
My Goat Ate My Homework
30 days ago
Reply to  10001010

There are some terrible examples of CVTs past and present that give them a bad name.

There are some good ones too, and they are getting better I think.

Jj
Jj
30 days ago
Reply to  10001010

But they also put the CVT in things that are supposed to be fun. The top-trim WRX is CVT only. When I bought my Forester, they offered an XT turbo version that I would have liked but it was CVT only.

Subaru’s silly H for no reason engines are also weaksauce. They need two cylinder heads and four camshafts for a 2 liter 4 cylinder that is one of the weakest 2.0 4 bangers on the market @ 152hp. All that power hauls a Crosstrek to 60mph in about 9.5 seconds. I know people aren’t buying base Crosstreks for stoplight battles, but that acceleration is going to be an issue in many merging situations.

I’m on my 3rd and probably last Subaru. I tolerated them for their available manual transmissions even though the 6 speed in my Forester feels like it came out of a tractor (manual in my BRZ was fantastic, 5 speed in my Outrback is fine). If I have to go with an automatic transmission, it won’t be a CVT so it won’t be in a Subaru.

10001010
10001010
30 days ago
Reply to  Jj

I definitely wouldn’t want the CVT in the WRX GT or the Levorg STi if for no other reason than I want to row my own gears in those cars. I think it would ruin an XT Fozzy too but in the non-turbo Forresters, Crosstreks, and Outbacks I think it does its thing just fine. We haven’t had an issue getting up to freeway speeds with ours and as long as you keep your foot in the sweet spot it’s incredibly smooth.

Jj
Jj
30 days ago
Reply to  10001010

Had a CVT. We did not like it.

Our local infrastructure predates any notion of planning. This has led to several places where you have to merge in from a stop sign into 60mph traffic without any kind of merging lane. Am I going to die merging a 3400lb 152hp vehicle here? Probably not. But I’d have to think about it more than I would like.

FleetwoodBro
FleetwoodBro
30 days ago
Reply to  10001010

I don’t mind the cvt in the Forester too much. I would prefer eliminating the fake gears, however. What are we doing here, faking gears? It’s embarrassing. Let’s all be honest with each other and just let the cvt…b.

10001010
10001010
29 days ago
Reply to  FleetwoodBro

The simulated shift points drive me absolutely bananas.

Cerberus
Cerberus
30 days ago
Reply to  MrLM002

There’s nothing wrong with Subaru’s CVTs as long as they’re serviced with a fluid changeout every 50k or whatever the apologists say works, you know, just like every other . . . well, OK, no other transmission.

The problem with Subaru mediocre mileage isn’t the CVT, it’s the full time AWD. I had 3 FWD Subarus (stopped buying them until the GR86 because they went AWD only) and having driven both kinds multiple times, the AWD versions felt more sluggish to respond, were slower to accelerate, less eager feeling in “attitude”, and got not insignificantly worse mileage in exchange for offroad/bad weather capability I never needed to cover rutted overgrown fire roads or New England winters at significantly higher speeds than I probably should have (when we used to get real snow) as good tires did the work. My manual FWD Legacy wagon was real close to the performance numbers published for the manual AWD turbo sedans, but with much better mileage. The full time system does work really well, but IMO costs too much in other ways, but it must work well for them.

MrLM002
MrLM002
30 days ago
Reply to  Cerberus

That’s why I’m a big fan of FWD based 4WD systems. Max MPG and fairly good adverse condition handling characteristics and 4WD when you need it.

Nsane In The MembraNe
Nsane In The MembraNe
30 days ago
Reply to  MrLM002

Subaru also doesn’t seem to have a single goddamn hybrid for some reason. My wife is pregnant and we’ll be looking to replace/possibly upsize her 2015 CRV in the next few years so I’ve been paying a fair amount of attention to the hauler market and I see no reason whatsoever to choose a Forester or Ascent over any of the competition.

Neither offer hybrids, both are saddled with garbage CVTs, and anything with the turbo 2.5 liter boxer is going to get horrific fuel economy. I just don’t see what the point of picking them over their Japanese competition is right now unless you really love the brand for some reason or think you need full time all wheel drive.

If you’re getting a hauler there is 0 reason whatsoever not to go hybrid right now unless you need to tow some serious stuff. Honda, Toyota, Mazda, etc. are all putting out traditional hybrids and PHEVs. Hell the regular CX90 is a mild hybrid and that thing somehow gets like 25 or 26 MPH combined.

You’ll literally never be driving these cars for fun and more range/spending less on gas/reducing emissions is a win win win. Hybridize all the family haulers yesterday. Hell, at this point the hybrids are usually a little bit quicker too. And even if they aren’t I’d take them over a rattly ass NA 4 cylinder or the WRX’s dated powertrain with 0 electrification and a CVT any day.

I do not understand the appeal of Subaru in 2024. They are so far behind the times it’s crazy when it comes to appliance cars and they’re slowly killing the WRX through mediocrity.

R Rr
R Rr
30 days ago
Reply to  MrLM002

Once you take the fun factor out of Subaru you’re stuck with questionable reliability and meh MPG.

Don’t forget the lack of power in the non-turbo engines (when brand new Subaru rental struggled to go up hills, it reminded me of old 60’s VW Beetles, but with much worse gas mileage).

..and the turbo engines barely outlast their warranty period, it’s an endless competition between the engine and the CVT over which one will fail first 🙂

Last edited 30 days ago by R Rr
Jj
Jj
30 days ago

I know I’ve recommended two people to look at KIA / Hyundai in the last week or so when they asked me. I’m personally looking at the Genesis GV70 because the interior is f/n gorgeous.

They’re still bringing new, interesting vehicles to the market and their styling is fantastic most of the time. It would be hard to bet against them for the coming year.

For smaller volume manufacturers, Porsche could have a good year depending on how the new electric Macan catches on. It looks good even though a Porsche badge on an SUV still hurts my soul a little bit.

Lizardman in a human suit
Lizardman in a human suit
30 days ago
Reply to  Jj

Hey, at least the Macan EV will be available in COLORS! Porshe is hard to beat in that department. That being said, most people will get them in black, white, or silver. Now thar is soul crushing….

Jj
Jj
30 days ago

Offering colors and selling colors are two different things. I can hope, but I don’t expect much. Small crossovers aren’t built for quirky interesting people who may buy colorful vehicles.

Lizardman in a human suit
Lizardman in a human suit
30 days ago
Reply to  Jj

You are right, dealers sell boring color porshe cuvs are bought by boring people worried about status and resale

Last edited 30 days ago by Lizardman in a human suit
Nsane In The MembraNe
Nsane In The MembraNe
30 days ago

There is nothing that makes me sadder than seeing new Porsches in lame colors. The wife and I had a 992 911 following us in traffic this weekend that was black on black and told her it was the saddest thing I’d ever seen.

I cannot even begin to fathom being able to afford a Porsche and being like “give me black, white, or silver”. They have such expressive color palates on offer and if you’re custom ordering a super expensive one already there’s the paint to sample program that’s a no-brainer.

If you’re already dropping $200,000 on some ridiculous 911 why not spend a little more on a custom paint color? Ugh. It makes no sense to me sometimes. I’m sure some of it is driven by how resale obsessed the Parsh crowd is but who the fuck cares?

Lizardman in a human suit
Lizardman in a human suit
30 days ago

Meanwhile I’ve been playing around on the Porsche configurator and speced a Boxter in hot pink with a red top and red interior. I like it. But I bet resale would be “You have to be joking.”

Cerberus
Cerberus
30 days ago

It’s crazy. Nobody is buying a Porsche in duress because their only car died are there are better ways to invest money than buying a Porsche (and the rarer ones that are immediately worth more will not be negatively affected by an odd color), so why wouldn’t someone get the color they want. Are Porsche people so boring that they do almost only want silver/white/black? Even if I really liked one of those colors, there are tons of other colors (even without getting into custom order) that I also like that would be more interesting and I’d pick one of those.

I also wonder if it really is better for resale. You’re not buying a Porsche to blend in. Sure, they’re not as stand-out as a Lamborghini (except the Uranus Rav4 V8), but they’re not a CRV, either. When the odd colors show up on the used market among a sea of silver/white/black ones, I would be surprised if they aren’t worth more for standing out a little against the other parking lot Porsches and being more appealing for the relative rarity a lot of people who buy the cars love to brag about. Maybe the pool of people looking for a really outrageous color is smaller, but the selection of available cars is smaller still and it’s not like there aren’t at least dozens of shades of, say, blue or green that aren’t lurid and polarizing for people to choose.

Lizardman in a human suit
Lizardman in a human suit
30 days ago
Reply to  Cerberus

Hell, when a Porsche gets to collector status, isn’t the colors no one picks the most valuable? Hell, spec a 911 cabriolet in yellow with a red top and blue interior. Then you could one up the corvette boys and say you have one of one in that color combo ever made. Mostly because you were the only one tasteless enough to order it, and Porsche is willing to cater to your bad taste. And in 40 years, someone will pay more for it because it is one of one. Maybe.

Freelivin1327
Freelivin1327
30 days ago

Boring car colors= boring people

Cheap Bastard
Cheap Bastard
30 days ago
Reply to  Freelivin1327

Or maybe

Boring car colors = people with different interests.

Jj
Jj
30 days ago

Will the Stellantis EVs drive themselves into roadside objects or will this remain a manual process?

getstoneyII (probably)
getstoneyII (probably)
30 days ago

The winners will be anyone associated with AI tech in transportation, including all the energy companies and associated entities that are needed to manufacture the power to run and sustain it (and profit massively). The loser, unfortunately, will be the environment. The cost of going “Green” is a cruel mistress with a penchant for rescinding the benefits of the effort.

Happy Monday 🙂

Loudog
Loudog
30 days ago

Eh. Nuclear all the things, go home. It’s a solvable problem.

Ben
Ben
30 days ago
Reply to  Loudog

Not in today’s political environment. Advocating for nuclear would be political suicide, which is too bad because it is probably the best option to clean up our energy production on a useful timescale.

Loudog
Loudog
30 days ago
Reply to  Ben

The interesting thing now is that it’s getting traction. If they can push GenIV and micro designs as “new” (much improved, certainly) it’ll get done. It’s just going to take 30 years or so. Folks are starting to figure out that fusion is always 20 years away and renewables are not base load worthy without a non linear buttload of batteries.

Saul Springmind
Saul Springmind
30 days ago
Reply to  Loudog

“non-linear buttload” is my new favorite phrase.

Ben
Ben
29 days ago
Reply to  Cheap Bastard

Interesting! That’s good news!

Cheap Bastard
Cheap Bastard
29 days ago
Reply to  Ben

Yes it is.

IMO the issues with nuclear are all political and malfeasance rather than technical. The oft lamented issue of waste disposal especially. It was proven decades ago by wanton dumping of everything and anything radioactive by the Soviets into the sea and by the tragic loss of several nuclear powered (and armed) ships with no proven harm to the environment that the ocean makes a fine disposal ground for even the nastiest wastes. Even so international treaties still ban the practice. There was some exploration into sub seabed disposal but that was abandoned in lieu of Yucca mountain, which itself was abandoned for political not technical reasons (not just my opinion but also that of someone I knew intimately related to that project).

IMO the reason for this is guarding waste is very easy money for those on that gravy train. That’s a powerful incentive to sow confusion and delay.

Brian Ash
Brian Ash
30 days ago

Kia, Hyundai, Genesis combined #4 in US sales but #1 in total ADM’s and dealer installed options….

Mrbrown89
Mrbrown89
30 days ago

I don’t see a good future for Polestar, they still only have the P2 in the lineup in the US, for a lot of people their leases end up soon and they still have the same car available (Volvo and Polestar have different financial operations, you cannot switch to a Volvo lease without paying the regular fees at the end of your lease). Doesn’t make sense to buy out the lease since their value dropped like a rock.

I still don’t understand the market for them, they are aiming at Porsche but their specs don’t compare to them, at that price point the brand has more weight than anything else. Geely should saved that money and put it into electrifying more Volvo models.

Ranwhenparked
Ranwhenparked
30 days ago
Reply to  Mrbrown89

I don’t get the point of Polestar as a separate brand, I mean, what can it do that Volvo can’t just as well?

Volvo is like Mercedes-Benz in that it can, and has, been used on everything from trucks and busses to taxi cabs to sports cars to family cars to official state limousines and people all easily accept that. Keeping Polestar as a Volvo sub brand made sense, spinning it off seems like a decision looking for a purpose. I’d say it isn’t even well separated, the design language between Volvo and Polestar is very similar and people who have Polestars are very well aware they’re Volvo products, it’s a selling point.

Also, separate brands or sub brands for electric vehicles are idiotic, considering all vehicles are going to be electric within the next several years, rendering separate branding quickly redundant. Just integrate electric models into your main lineup, would probably even help with consumer acceptance by normalizing them

Needles Balloon
Needles Balloon
30 days ago
Reply to  Ranwhenparked

I think there were a couple factors Geely was thinking about when making Polestar:

1. Despite their recent efforts under Geely ownership, Volvo still doesn’t have the same prestige as the 3 luxury German brands and are still considered to be a half tier lower. They’re higher than Buick, Infiniti, Acura or Lincoln and at a similar level to Cadillac, Jaguar or Lexus. This is partially because they are not really known as a performance brand like the Germans, which means they miss out on the popular sporty luxury market. Polestar was (at least initially) an attempt to be a sportier brand, in contrast to the comfort/safety/tech branding that Volvo aims for.

2. In China, Geely has a whole bunch of brands that make different flavors of the same car platform. These include Lotus, Smart, Zeekr, Lynk & Co along with Volvo and Polestar. It feels like they’re throwing stuff at the wall and seeing what sticks, but it seems to be working decently well saleswise. If the strategy works in China, why not try it in the US?

Ranwhenparked
Ranwhenparked
30 days ago

Is it truly working in China though? Geely has discontinued almost as many Chinese domestic brands as they currently have, most after one a few years, and the ones they still have are kind of too new to really tell if they’re going to have more staying power than the previous ones

Saul Springmind
Saul Springmind
30 days ago
Reply to  Mrbrown89

The Polestar 3 should be here this year and is imo the best looking electric-cuv-thing out there at the moment.

Arch Duke Maxyenko
Arch Duke Maxyenko
30 days ago

My prediction for 2024: Everything will be just fine, except for Infiniti and Lincoln, they are going real far into the the downward spiral that will have them both on the brink of being killed off.

Drew
Drew
30 days ago

This is gonna be Lordstown’s year. I can feel it.

Okay, seriously, I think that we’ll see Kiundai continue to make gains, mostly at Tesla’s expense (though GM and Ford certainly have good reason to worry about losing customers to them, too). GM is going to lose ground because they have committed to regular gassers and EVs while ignoring hybrids. This may pay off later, but it’s not going to pay off quite yet. Toyota is going to continue to be a dominant force, and Ford may gain some more ground. (This is all US market. I can’t begin to speak to the international market.)

Last edited 30 days ago by Drew
DadBod
DadBod
30 days ago
Reply to  Drew

Ki and Hyundai have actual cars on the lot people can buy. They have the same spread of hybrids and PHEVs as Toyota without the supply problems, I think they will keep killing it in 2024. Where I live they don’t do markups and the dealers aren’t pure evil, so maybe I am too optimistic.

Drew
Drew
30 days ago
Reply to  DadBod

Exactly. They are eating up EV market share while also offering hybrids and PHEVs people want. They have something for just about everyone, and they have them available. They’ll have to really screw up to stop gaining ground.

Pat Rich
Pat Rich
30 days ago

From what I’ve read here and on other sources, the Toyota engine thing seems like a relatively minor issue. I could be wrong, but it doesn’t sound like an emissions coverup or a big lie about HP. If it is what it seems, Im not even sure why they would have bothered to do it.

Diesel engines are tough and even in markets that are less stringent than the US market, they are starting to get tougher.

Peter Andruskiewicz
Peter Andruskiewicz
30 days ago
Reply to  Pat Rich

Exactly, this wasn’t cheating on emissions or inflating power output, it was using non-production parts during certification. While that certainly can change the emissions and power output or the variability of those things, it sounds like it didn’t in this case. If so though, I have to wonder why they announced it in this way

Mechjaz
Mechjaz
30 days ago

I don’t know or have beef with the people/person that are/is LCD Soundsystem, but it is some of the lousiest weinermusic I’ve ever heard. “How cool would it be to do disaffected spoken word tracks over the built-in tunes on this Casio keyboard I found in the trash?”

The answer, of course, is not cool, man. Not cool at all.

DialMforMiata
DialMforMiata
30 days ago
Reply to  Mechjaz

THANK YOU. LCD Soundsystem is one of those bands I feel like I’m “supposed” to like, but I just can’t. They have a few good tracks (generally the shorter the better) but “Losing My Edge” is a track that instantly gets me to change the Sirius channel off of XMU.

Protodite
Protodite
30 days ago
Reply to  DialMforMiata

XMU still plays LCD Soundsystem? I assumed it all went to Phoebe Bridgers knockoff groups at this point

Taargus Taargus
Taargus Taargus
30 days ago
Reply to  Protodite

You’re not wrong, lol. But they do still occasionally throw LCD Soundsystem in there.

I’ve actually noticed that XMU still leans awfully heavy 00’s indie, which isn’t shocking because I’d assume the kids are off doing something entirely different by now.

DialMforMiata
DialMforMiata
30 days ago

Probably why I like XMU as much as I do. When rock got bad in the aughts (see the Honda Civic band editions article) I started to get into indie stuff… Belle and Sebastian, Sufjan Stevens, Decemberists, etc. XMU still fits my listening tastes for the most part. They do play a LOT of Phoebe Bridgers, though.

Last edited 30 days ago by DialMforMiata
Taargus Taargus
Taargus Taargus
30 days ago
Reply to  DialMforMiata

Oh totally. I, like a lot of people, am at least still partially stuck in the music scenes of my teens and 20’s. XMU fits the bill there.

DadBod
DadBod
30 days ago
Reply to  Mechjaz

Every new band I hear makes me like Slayer even more.

Mechjaz
Mechjaz
30 days ago
Reply to  DadBod

I’m more death than thrash, but 100%. There’s a reason Cannibal Corpse is one of the first things I load on a new phone’s local media.

I tried with LCD Soundsystem after hearing it as a funky weird thing in the Forza Motorsport 2 menu music, but it’s all that song every song.

No Kids, Just Bikes
No Kids, Just Bikes
30 days ago
Reply to  Mechjaz

Do you like Sanguisugabogg? They’re the most recent death metal that is heavy in my rotation.

Mechjaz
Mechjaz
30 days ago

Ooooooh, I didn’t know them before your comment but a quick watch seems promising. I’ve been on a big Archspire kick lately, along with Car Bomb.

DadBod
DadBod
30 days ago

Spotify and Apple Music have exposed me to so many awesome, obscure metal bands. I even sometimes listen to the crap where the dude tries to sing emo-style (metalcore?) because the riffage is so rifftastic.

No Kids, Just Bikes
No Kids, Just Bikes
29 days ago
Reply to  DadBod

As a fully-grown adult I am compelled to proselytize: THE ONLY CORE IS GRINDCORE*. The rest seem to be aimed at kids who want to feel tough.

*old-school hardcore enthusiastically excepted. Even though Madball is Pantera for New Jersey.

VanGuy
VanGuy
29 days ago

Grindcore? Did somebody say Ax Cx?
…sorry, I’m going to stop myself from talking before I break community guidelines.

No Kids, Just Bikes
No Kids, Just Bikes
29 days ago
Reply to  VanGuy

I like Hull’s later work in Pig Destroyer a bit more, but whatever works.

No Kids, Just Bikes
No Kids, Just Bikes
30 days ago
Reply to  DadBod

They were such a boring live show towards the end, though. Tom Araya looked like a father time that was bored being in a band.

Lockleaf
Lockleaf
30 days ago
Reply to  Mechjaz

I had to go look them up. I don’t really get in to indie pop rock slash alternative stuff. So I don’t think I had heard them before. And I found myself instantly in this same boat.

If I want to listen to synthwave, WhiteBatAudio on Youtube does some good stuff, all music, no spoken word. But if we are talking about instrumental to just listen to, then the two Doom soundtracks by Mick Gordon are some fantastic listening. If I want to listen to spoken tracks, then there are two songs that make the cut. Class of ’99, by Baz Luhrmann and Rockabye by Shawn Mullins. I may have just fully dated my musical tastes. But lets be honest, I never stopped listening to Nu Metal. I just started adding Euro Trash Metal to the mix as I got a little older.

AssMatt
AssMatt
30 days ago
Reply to  Mechjaz

I think LCD Soundsystem is the 21st Century’s Grateful Dead. You had to be there, man.

Protodite
Protodite
30 days ago
Reply to  AssMatt

I like LCD, I somewhat dislike Grateful Dead (music to me is meh, but the scene is rough and off putting), but WOW I think you’re very right

Grey alien in a beige sedan
Grey alien in a beige sedan
30 days ago
Reply to  AssMatt

Saw them at Lolla a few years back… can confirm. They inspired me to get my own analog synth. Now I rock out with my poly D a few days each week.

DialMforMiata
DialMforMiata
30 days ago
Reply to  AssMatt

Vampire Weekend would like a word…

AssMatt
AssMatt
30 days ago
Reply to  DialMforMiata

I just mean that they’re beloved by people who had an experience at the perfect time for them. The right party, the right crowd, the right night, the right planets aligned. It happened to them, whereas the rest of us just…heard it. No offense intended.

DialMforMiata
DialMforMiata
30 days ago
Reply to  AssMatt

Lol, no worries. I feel that way about Flaming Lips, the most transcendent concert I ever went to was when they were touring after “Yoshimi” was released. I just meant that VW has been trying so hard the last couple of tours to get the whole “Dead Concert for the 21st century” vibe down.

Taargus Taargus
Taargus Taargus
30 days ago
Reply to  Mechjaz

Sound of Silver is one of my favorite albums, so I’m gonna have to disagree. But hey, YMMV.

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