Automotive News Europe Blogs
Swedish royalty and the XC90
Posted 12:01 am U.S. ET, July 3
Volvo supplied 35 XC90s for last month's Swedish royal wedding.
DOUGLAS A. BOLDUC:
The Volvo XC90 has become synonymous with the royal family of the company’s homeland.
Sweden’s royal court used 35 new-generation XC90s as courtesy cars to transport VIPs attending last month’s wedding of Prince Carl Philip and Sofia Hellqvist.
In addition, King Carl XVI Gustav of Sweden has added the premium SUV to his fleet, a Volvo source confirmed to Automotive News Eu ...
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Citroen CEO sees positive changes for women in auto industry
Posted 12:01 am U.S. ET, July 2
Citroen CEO Linda Jackson thinks China's car business is less macho than in other countries because its history isn't rooted in the male-driven world of racing.
One year into her role as Citroen CEO Linda Jackson says she hasn't encountered any prejudice as a woman working a man's world. In fact, she says it's an advantage.
“Being a women you can ask questions that men don't ask because they're supposed to know all these things,” she told me during a recent interview at the recent Automotive News Europe Congress.
One surprise to her has been ...
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Renault Espace's Tesla-like touchscreen could be a winner
Posted 12:01 am U.S. ET, June 25
The Espace's touchscreen corresponds with the driver's view of the road, ensuring information is displayed clearly.
Renault’s large, vertically mounted touchscreen on its new Espace large minivan seems like a smart move as connectivity increasingly becomes a key selling point for new vehicles.
The Espace’s 8.7-inch touchscreen for controlling infotainment and driving aids has a similar layout to the signature 17-inch display on the Tesla Model S sedan.
The Espace touchscreen’s portrait mode, ...
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VW pays the price for failing to respond to evolving customer needs in China
Posted 5:00 am U.S. ET, June 19
| Yang Jian is managing editor of Automotive News China.|
After outperforming the market for almost a decade, Volkswagen, the top-selling brand in China, has begun to lose market share.
Through May, the brand's sales dipped 3.7 percent to 1.16 million vehicles. In that same period, industry sales of light vehicles in China rose 5 percent.
Why has VW started to lose ground? China's soft economy is one reason. Economic growth slowed to 7 percent in the f ...
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Marchionne's merger mania: Why now?
Posted 5:34 am U.S. ET, June 16
LARRY P. VELLEQUETTE:
Sergio Marchionne, CEO of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and related companies, has a number of honorifics and titles on his resume.
But there is one important task that doesn't get talked about that much: Sherpa.
I refer to Marchionne's desperate quest to find a merger partner for FCA. He is shouldering the load for the billionaire Agnelli family that employs him.
Actually, Marchionne reminds me mo ...
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Life or death decisions
Posted 12:01 am U.S. ET, June 12
This Audi A7 concept covered almost 900km largely on autopilot from Palo Alto, California, to the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in January.
In the near future I could be writing this column from the driver’s seat of my car while the vehicle steers itself along the highway. This highlights just one of the possibilities that self-driving and increasingly connected cars open up to people like me who are fascinated by any new technology.
Audi’s sales and marketing chief, Luca de Meo, one of the brightest auto executives I hav ...
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The incredible power of praise
Posted 1:55 am U.S. ET, June 10
| Douglas A. Bolduc is Managing Editor at Automotive News Europe.|
The industry's up-and-coming executives require something their old-school bosses are often reluctant to give: praise. This deficiency can be the difference in losing or keeping a game-changing team member, said Gabi Whitefield, who along with being global public relations director at Land Rover is a member of the Automotive News Europe Rising Stars Club.
Whitfield was asked to speak last night d ...
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The steep road ahead for Alfa in the U.S.
Posted 8:17 am U.S. ET, June 8
Alfa Romeo returned to the U.S. market last November with the 4C.
A 44-year-old Alfa Romeo Montreal sports coupe that sold new for $6,000 brought $176,000 at a classic car auction in Arizona. Some older Alfas are commanding auction prices more than 10 times higher than just five years ago.
There is no doubt that Alfa Romeo fans -- the Alfisti -- are passionate. But there is enough doubt that there are enough of them to bring the brand back to life after a 20-ye ...
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Mitsubishi should focus on SUVs to boost Europe sales
Posted 12:01 am U.S. ET, June 4
The XR-PHEV II previewed the next-generation ASX, Mitsubishi's No. 2 seller in Europe.
Mitsubishi should become an SUV-only brand in Europe positioned below Land Rover to boost its profitability and sales volume, the brand’s UK boss believes.
The Japanese automaker’s European volume is already tilted toward SUVs after the company axed its slow-selling Lancer compact car in some European markets including the UK. This left the Mirage/Space Star hatchback as the brand&rsq ...
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VW says the Golf will be first car to offer gesture controls
Posted 12:01 am U.S. ET, June 3
The updated Volkswagen Golf, due in 2016, will add gesture controls to its "Star Trek"-style touch screens, AutoExpress reports.
VW presented the new in-car technology in the Golf R Touch concept last week at CES Asia in Shanghai. It previews the production version of interior tech that the face-lifted Golf will receive when it goes on sale in late 2016.
The driver and passengers will ...
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Honda works smart to fill UK plant
Posted 4:52 am U.S. ET, May 20
| Nick Gibbs is UK Correspondent at Automotive News Europe.|
Honda has reduced the problem of drastic undercapacity at its factory in Swindon, England, by inviting suppliers to utilize the empty space.
Honda has been building cars in Swindon since 1992, and in 2001 it responded to rising demand for its models by building a second plant to lift capacity by 100,000 units to 250,000 cars.
But the Japanese automaker was hit hard by the European economic slump ...
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Ferdinand Piech did it again. The 78-year old patriarch upstaged his younger cousin Wolfgang Porsche and former protege Martin Winterkorn by missing the annual meeting of the family holding company that holds a majority stake in Volkswagen Group.
Wolfgang Porsche had to field questions that almost solely dealt with his missing relative at the Porsche SE shareholders meeting on Wednesday after Pie ...