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Larry P. Vellequette

Fiat Chrysler, VW reporter
Address: 1155 Gratiot Ave.
48207 Detroit, Mich.
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Phone: 313-446-0478
E-Mail: lvellequette@crain.com
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Recent authored articles

VW Jetta gets new look, platform in quest to win sedan shoppers

UPDATED: 12/13/17 1:49 pm ET - adds year of U.S. debut

VW believes much-improved driving dynamics, more technology and a more fuel-efficient gasoline powertrain in a redesigned Jetta built on the brand's global MQB platform will draw sedan buyers to Canadian and U.S. showrooms.

VW Jetta gets new look, platform in quest to win sedan shoppers

UPDATED: 12/13/17 1:45 pm ET - adds year of debut

VW believes that much-improved driving dynamics, more technology and a more fuel-efficient gasoline powertrain in a redesigned Jetta that is moving onto the brand's global MQB platform will draw sedan customers to U.S.

Tennessee plant may be VW's EV factory

By building EVs at its plant in Chattanooga, Tenn., Volkswagen is hoping to get a better return on its billion-dollar investment in the facility.

Schmidt's statement showed a broken man with misplaced faith in VW

Oliver Schmidt's vacant almost defiant stare has been the face of VW's $30 billion diesel emissions scandal. That wasn't the face seen in court on Wednesday.

Schmidt's statement showed a broken man with misplaced faith in VW

Oliver Schmidt's vacant almost defiant stare has been the face of VW's $30 billion diesel emissions scandal. That wasn't the face seen in court on Wednesday.

Ex-VW exec Schmidt gets max 7 years, $400,000 fine for U.S. emissions violations

Oliver Schmidt, the former executive who spearheaded Volkswagen's multiyear efforts to keep its conspiracy to cheat on diesel emissions a secret from U.S.

VW preps dealers for tough EV economics

VW is talking with its dealers worldwide about keeping them profitable even as the automaker ramps up output of lower-maintenance electric vehicles.

Wrangler gets overhaul, with plug-in coming

Jeep will offer a plug-in hybrid version of its iconic off-roader in 2020, joining new turbocharged I-4 and diesel V-6 options on the redesigned 2018 Wrangler.

Should automakers leave automaking to others?

What if a car company outsourced its entire vehicle production operations to a secondary entity that would operate like an automotive version of Foxconn, Apple's gigantic manufacturing partner?

FCA: Lower fleet shipments drive decline

UPDATED: 12/4/17 12:13 pm ET

FCA US extended its losing streak to a 15th consecutive month in November, as sales fell 3.7 percent to 154,919 vehicles.

VW/AUDI: VW brand slips amid small-car collapse; Audi up 12%

Volkswagen brand sales were down 1.6 percent to 29,207 while Audi extended its industry-best sales streak to 97 months, rising 12 percent.

VW's Diess says 'Chattanooga is our first choice' to build new EVs for the U.S.

VW's plant in Tennessee is the company's leading candidate to build its upcoming lineup of electric vehicles, according to high-ranking brand officials speaking in Germany and at the Los Angeles Auto Show.

Under next-gen Jeep Wrangler's familiar sheet metal, a modern-day overhaul

UPDATED: 11/30/17 1:33 pm ET - adds details

The redesigned 2018 Jeep Wrangler may look similar to its immediate predecessor, but above the skid plates and beneath the removable top, fans of the off-roader will notice the upgrades incorporated into the first Wrangler...

Under next-gen Jeep Wrangler's familiar sheet metal, a modern-day overhaul

The redesigned 2018 Jeep Wrangler may look similar to its immediate predecessor, but above the skid plates and beneath the removable top, fans of the off-roader will notice the upgrades incorporated into the first Wrangler...

VW packs I.D. Crozz EV with smart motors

The VW I.D. Crozz, due in 2020, will be powered by a pair of electric motors, one on each axle, with a combined output of 302 hp. Each motor can operate together or separately as conditions demand.

Jeep plans optional soft-top on Scrambler pickup

The Jeep Scrambler -- FCA's planned Wrangler-based pickup -- will come with an optional droptop, Automotive News has learned.

Jeep plans optional soft-top on Scrambler pickup

The Jeep Scrambler -- FCA's planned Wrangler-based pickup -- will come with an optional droptop, Automotive News has learned.

FCA under pressure to recall Chrysler Pacificas for potential stalling problem

The Center for Auto Safety is asking NHTSA to open an investigation and recall the Chrysler Pacifica, which the group says represents an "unreasonable risk" because of a stalling problem.

Dude, where's my flying car?

After a century of failed efforts to make vehicles that can soar above gridlocked traffic, the idea that such contraptions are "just around the corner" might not be so far-fetched.

A century of promises

Here's just a taste of a century's worth of unfulfilled flying-car promises. A few are fictional, but every one of them is a promise of a future that as yet hasn't come to be.

Jay Amestoy, retired head of PR for Mazda, dies after lengthy illness

UPDATED: 11/17/17 2:39 pm ET - adds details, corrected

Jay Amestoy, who spent more than two decades at the public relations helm at Mazda North America and previously worked in public relations for Volkswagen Group of America, died late Thursday. He was 69.

FCA to offer split, dual-function tailgate on Ram 1500, spy photos reveal

Spy photographers have caught confirmation that at least some versions of the next-generation Ram 1500 pickup will have a new dual-function tailgate, capable of dropping down or opening up french door style.

Dealers should help their customers with consumer side of parts anti-trust case

There's an opportunity for dealers in regions of the country eligible to benefit from a massive auto parts antitrust class action settlement now being adjudicated.

Dealers to get piece of $1 billion bounty from price-fixing cases

Thousands of car dealerships are poised to receive a payoff stemming from a multinational price-fixing conspiracy that snared 47 suppliers for rigging bids on commodity parts.

VW names agency exec Zabel to head U.S. marketing

Volkswagen of America named a California advertising agency executive as vice president of marketing.

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