Auto News for September 5th
BMW To Put Out Fires This Autumn
Are you a BMW X5 owner? Does this said X5 come equipped with a diesel engine? Do you read Sailing magazine? If so…you are in very serious danger (not because you read Sailing magazine, but because you own the SUV). BMW announced a recall of up to 2,120 of its X5 xDrive 35d SUVs. Seems the fuel-filter heater, the thing that heats up diesel fuel in cold weather, can electrically overload and become permanently activated even when the car is turned off. This can lead to a dead battery or a vehicle fire. Both are bad.
The recalls will begin in October, maybe the nicest month on the east coast. (This ends the auto news portion of the entry). October is also the nicest month in San Francisco because of fogless evenings and warmer temperatures. It’s not autumn here, however. The way seasons provide a reference point for memories and the future in other parts of the country is absent. Until you’ve lived in a place like San Francisco where the days bleed into weeks and months and eventually years, it’s impossible to know what it’s like to lose that ingrained quad-seasonal sense of time.
Auto News for September 6th
All Those Auto Sales, All That August
“Consumers are being cautious, and appropriately so, but they are not retrenching,” said Don Johnson, G.M.’s vice president of United States sales operations, on a conference call. “All indications to us are that the industry is going to slowly grow for the rest of this year.”
Thanks Don! The New York Times has full industry statistics here. Encouraging signs for the industry, and encouraging news for reducing the square feet of automobiles on the road. Every unit of the Chevrolet Volt has been pre-sold, as G.M. halted production earlier in the summer in order to change their production facilities to retool ahead of expected increases in demand. Most agree increasing the space between cars on highways is necessary if we want lighter commutes. If car sales continue to rise and consumers actually replace their older, larger autos with little guys, then we’ll be a much happier populace.
And who’s gonna say no to someone like Don Johnson selling you a car? That guy invented cool in the 80s. He’s also been in 74 (74!?!?!?) movies.
Auto News for September 7th
Ford Pushes Into India
Auto news for India, out of Detroit. On Monday, Ford began construction on a new $1 billion auto and engine manufacturing complex in the state of Gujurat. The facility will employ 5,000, and produce 240,000 vehicles and 270,000 engines a year. Ford’s mid-decade sales goal is 8 million automobiles, which won’t happen without a significant Indian presence.
Ford’s first vehicle release was the new Fiesta in July. Tangential to the mid-decade 8 million cars sold goal is Ford’s strategy of having 8 vehicle models in the country at mid-decade.
And why Gujarat? Well…it’s on the western side of India with a robust 1,600 kilometer coastline. There are over 50 million people who live in Gujarat, and it is has the fastest growing GDP in the country. What’s the derivation of Gujarat? Easy. Gujarat was the land protected or ruled by the Gurjars, or the Gurjar-Rashta, also known as the Gujjars nation. Unfortunately that’s all we know, because the origin of the Gujjars is uncertain.
Predictable that a story so ripe with possibility would confirm the oh so close nature of the Internet. Just when you think you’re about to get real, get at the core, the trail ends. At least we can enjoy some beautiful photographs that users have uploaded at various points.
Auto News for September 8th
Honda Recalls Tons
It’s been a slow week news-wise for the auto industry, at least in terms of anything particularly interesting to write about. But there’s always the old recall fallback, and when a recall effects almost a million people, it’s a good idea to mention it. Honda recalled 962,000 cars worldwide this week to fix power windows and computer systems. 936,000 Fit subcompacts have defects in the driver’s side power window switch units, which have the potential to melt and catch fire. 26,000 CR-Z hybrids have issues with the engine control units from programming problems.
There’s not much I can add to this entry. I want to, but I’ve already written about fires and BMW on Monday, referenced Don Johnson on Tuesday, and detailed the wonders of Gujarat yesterday. So I think I’ll just let this one be and avoid reaching too much.