Official: Lamborghini Gallardo Squadra Corse will cost $260K* and only come in yellow

Filed under: Motorsports, Coupe, Performance, Lamborghini, Racing

2014 Lamborghini Gallardo LP570-4 Squadra Corse
If you live in America and want one of the 15 Lamborghini Gallardo Squadra Corses slated for our shores, you’ll be happy to know you can have it any color you want, so long as it’s yellow. Seems a bit odd, we’ll agree, but Lambo’s Giallo Midas is kind of a trademark for the brand.

Pricing for the special edition Gallardo, which is limited to just 50 units worldwide, starts at $259,100, *not including the $2,100 gas guzzler tax or the unspecified destination costs. Besides the 15 cars slated for the US market, Canada will get three vehicles of its own. Regardless of where you buy your Squadra Corse, though, they’ll be individually numbered and will begin deliveries in September.

Finally, Lamborghini has released a few more images of the new car (not in yellow, oddly), which we’ve added to our gallery, above.

Lamborghini Gallardo Squadra Corse will cost $260K* and only come in yellow originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 08 Aug 2013 09:29:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Report: Jaguar F-Type coupe to cost more than convertible?

Filed under: Spy Photos, Convertible, Coupe, Jaguar

Jaguar F-Type Coupe Spied at the Nurburgring

Jaguar may price the much-rumored F-Type Coupe above the F-Type Convertible, if a report from Australia’s Drive is to be believed. What makes Jag think that such a pricing strategy would work? Porsche. Take a look at the German manufacturer’s consumer site, and you’ll notice that the Boxster is less expensive than the Cayman, despite being essentially the same car.

It’s a fair point, and a price premium does a good job of emphasizing the sporting chops of the coupe over the open-air experience that normally entitles convertibles to higher MSRPs. It’s unclear just how closely Jaguar will follow Porsche’s example, though.

Both the Cayman and Cayman S boast an extra ten horsepower over a Boxster or Boxster S, and while this bump in grunt is negligible in every situation but an argument over which is “best,” it isn’t something to be ignored in the F-Type, particularly as cranking more power out of its supercharged engines should be a rather simple matter.

Drive also points out something quite exciting: with an F-Type Coupe on the way, the groundwork has now been laid for a dedicated R and RS model. We can’t wait.

Jaguar F-Type coupe to cost more than convertible? originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 30 Jul 2013 10:59:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Nissan Leaf battery replacement will cost $100/month, offers new pack at any time

Filed under: EV/Plug-in, Nissan

2013 nissan leaf

Perhaps this is where some of that excess battery manufacturing capacity in Smyrna, TN will be used. Nissan announced a new battery replacement program for the all-electric Leaf today at a cost of “approximately $100 per month.” The offer is in addition to the standard Leaf battery warranty that already covers the battery for against defects for eight years or 100,000 miles (and was upgraded late last year to cover capacity loss for five years or 60,000 miles).

Even after the warranty ends, a Nissan Leaf owner can sign up for the battery replacement program.

Here’s how it works. At any time, like when the warranty is about to end – so, at 4 years, 11 months or 59,999 miles – or even after the warranty ends, a Nissan Leaf owner can sign up for the battery replacement program. At that point, you start paying $100 a month (or whatever the final cost will be) and immediately get a new battery pack that has a full 12 bars of capacity.

Nissan’s senior manager of corporate communications, Brian Brockman, told AutoblogGreen that “Owners can opt in at any time. When they opt into the program, they will receive a new battery pack with the latest available technology that is compatible with their vehicle. Then, Nissan provides assurance that the replacement pack will maintain 9 bars or more capacity for the time that they own their car and make monthly payments. If their battery drops below 9 bars, we will repair or replace the battery pack.”

So, basically, the new program provides a reasonably priced piece of mind to Leaf owners. On top of that, anyone with an older Leaf who wants to take advantage of newer technology (as long as it’s compatible) can get a newer pack using this program. So, if you buy a used 2012 Leaf today but want a 2015 battery pack in a few years (should it fit in the car) you can get one for $100 a month. This cost is transferable to the new owner if you later sell the car.

Which brings up the questions about what happens If you stop paying after, say, six months. Brockman said the situation would be similar to what happens to anyone who stops paying their car loan and Nissan is currently trying to determine “if there is an end point” to the payments. We’ll know even more when Nissan releases more information “later this year,” including how the program will work outside the US, and there are also more details below.

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Nissan Leaf battery replacement will cost $100/month, offers new pack at any time originally appeared on Autoblog Green on Thu, 20 Jun 2013 18:28:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Report: Cost to insure a new UK driver? Nearly $10,000/year

Filed under: Etc., Safety, Earnings/Financials, UK

L Plate on a Suzuki Samurai

According to The Daily Telegraph, young drivers in Britain can pay as much as £546 per month for auto insurance. That’s around $890/month at current conversion rates. The report indicates that UK drivers between the ages of 17 and 22 years old pay an average of £5,957 – around $9,640.

And you thought it was expensive to get car insurance for your child.

Why the steep price tag for UK drivers with Learner’s tags? It’s no shock to learn that young drivers carry a higher risk of being involved in an accident than their elder counterparts, and as such, insurance companies assign higher premiums to the group. Unfortunately, as a result of these tough insurance prices, it’s estimated that as much as 20 percent of UK drivers between the ages of 17 and 22 are driving without any coverage at all.

Additionally, around 41 percent of UK parents are currently insuring their child’s vehicle in their name to cut costs. Unfortunately, doing so is illegal, and insurance companies can refuse to cover a claim if they find that parents have been fronting insurance for their young drivers.

So what’s the solution? The Daily Telegraph reports that some insurance companies are turning to a black box that measures g-forces from sudden acceleration, braking and cornering, as well as the time of day that the vehicle is being driven and its speed to custom-tailor insurance premiums. Similar measures are being undertaken here in the States as well.

Cost to insure a new UK driver? Nearly $10,000/year originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 25 May 2011 16:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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2012 Buick LaCrosse dropping trim levels, V6 available as no-cost option

Filed under: Car Buying, Sedan, Buick, GM

2010 Buick LaCrosse

Buick LaCrosse – Click above for high-res image gallery

In addition to having eAssist added to its four-cylinder powertrain, the 2012 Buick LaCrosse is undergoing a few other changes. We aren’t talking about styling or content tweaks – instead, General Motors is revising its packaging strategy for the LaCrosse. Buick will be ditching the CX, CXL and CXS trim level designations and simply offer large option packages that encompass all of the available amenities.

For 2012, the 2.4-liter Ecotec engine with eAssist technology will be offered as the “standard” powertrain. We recently had some very limited drive time with an eAssist-equipped LaCrosse (stay tuned for our full impressions), and found the four-cylinder with 182 horsepower and 172 pound-feet of torque to be pleasantly adequate and its highway rating of 37 miles per gallon downright remarkable. eAssist-equipped cars will look no different than other LaCrosses, save the addition of model-specific 17-inch wheels on efficiency-optimized tires and other fuel-saving upgrades not visible from outside the car.

The General’s 280-horsepower direct-injected 3.6-liter V6 will still be made available, complete with the new HiPer Strut front suspension that helps keep torque steer to a minimum, but buyers can now select it as a no-cost option, and also opt for all-wheel drive.

Final pricing information has not been released, but Buick tells us that the entry level LaCrosse will start around $30,000. Currently, the LaCrosse has a base MSRP of $26,995, which suggests the addition of eAssist and its associated fuel-saving parts isn’t cheap. What Buick has effectively done is ditched the “base” LaCrosse model and left two identically priced models for buyers to choose from: one focused on exceptional fuel economy and the other on power.

Production on the 2012 LaCrosse will start this summer with the first round of cars hitting dealerships this Fall.

Gallery: Review: 2010 Buick LaCrosse

Photos copyright (C)2011 Drew Phillips / AOL

2012 Buick LaCrosse dropping trim levels, V6 available as no-cost option originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 25 Mar 2011 12:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Report: China tells foreign automakers they must build low-cost local brands

Filed under: China, Plants/Manufacturing

Chinese flagIf you want to do business in the Chinese market, you have to play by the rules set out by the Chinese government… and those rules are subject to change. Such is the case in the automotive segment, where officials from China are reportedly set to add some requirements for automakers that wish to update any contracts in an effort to build more vehicles in China.

Apparently, as much as 30 percent of any additional production capacity over what has already been agreed upon will be earmarked for the Chinese market, and that percentage of vehicles would have to be sold under a new Chinese brand name at a “low cost.”

It’s not necessarily more brands China wants, it’s intellectual property. “During 10 years of trying, China has become a big factory for foreign companies, and their Chinese partners didn’t get advanced technology. Through this industrial policy they would like Chinese carmakers to get IP in order to own this market,” said Lang Xuehong, automotive analyst with Sinotrust, quoted by Financial Times.

Will the scales fall in favor of more access to the lucrative Chinese market or will the desire to keep valuable intellectual property under the roof of the company that actually earned it through actual research and development triumph? We’ll see.

[Source: Financial Times – sub. req.]

Report: China tells foreign automakers they must build low-cost local brands originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 21 Mar 2011 17:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Dodge announces 3/36 no-cost maintenance on select Durango and Journey models

Filed under: Car Buying, Crossover, Chrysler, Dodge

Dodge Durango Citadel

Dodge Durango Citadel at SEMA 2010 – Click above for high-res image gallery

Chrysler has unveiled a new no-cost maintenance program for certain Dodge Journey and Durango models. Buyers who opt for the Durango Citadel or the Journey Lux will be treated to free maintenance for three years or 36,000 miles that includes oil and oil filter changes every three months or 3,000 miles as well as scheduled and recommended maintenance at 6,000 mile intervals. The program also throws in $1,000 worth of trip-interruption coverage, towing and roadside assistance up to $100 and $35/per day car rental should you get into an accident. All told, Chrysler says that the program has a retail value of around $1,100.

We’re guessing that no-cost maintenance is an effort to lure buyers to deeper ends of the Durango and Journey option pools. Of course, knowing that you won’t have to shell out a dime for routine work on your vehicle is likely to be a big selling point when either the newly reworked crossovers are lined up against their competitors. Hit the jump for the full press release.

Gallery: SEMA 2010: Dodge Durango Citadel “Black and Tan”

Dodge Durango Citadel Dodge Durango Citadel Dodge Durango Citadel Dodge Durango Citadel Dodge Durango Citadel

Photos copyright (C)2010 Drew Phillips / AOL

[Source: Chrysler]

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Dodge announces 3/36 no-cost maintenance on select Durango and Journey models originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 20 Dec 2010 18:27:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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NADA picks vehicles with best cost of ownership

Filed under: Car Buying, Earnings/Financials

NADA picks vehicles with the best cost of ownership – Click above for high-res image gallery

We’ve all been there. A new car model of some variety or another strikes our fancy, we start playing around with the configurator, and before long we’re staring at a nice, tidy monthly payment on the computer screen. It seems reasonable. With a little starvation and the occasional dabbling in petty crime, it might even be easy to hand over that stack of hundred-dollar bills each and every month. Then reality politely reminds us that there’s more to paying for a new car than the check we write to the bank. Things like fuel, insurance, fees, taxes, repairs and maintenance can quickly add up to more than your monthly payment. There’s even depreciation to factor in. The pros call all of this the cost of ownership.

Good thing, too. We’ve never really been too deft at pick-pocketing.

The good folk at NADA have worked up a list of vehicles with the best cost of ownership compared to their MSRP. Sure, they assumed a few variables – specifically, that the vehicles would be driven around 15,000 miles per year by someone with at least six years of driving experience, but the figures are a good operating base for your own car-buying fantasies. Check out the gallery below for the winners in their segments and then hop the jump for the full press blast.

Gallery: NADA vehicles with the best cost of ownership

[Source: NADA]

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NADA picks vehicles with best cost of ownership originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 27 Aug 2010 13:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Report: Honda Fit Hybrid to cost $18,600* in Japan

Filed under: Hybrid, Japan, Hatchback, Honda

Honda Fit Sport – Click above for high-res image gallery

Honda is finally set to launch the Fit hybrid in Japan this October and pricing is rumored to start at ¥1.59 million or about $18,600 at current exchange rates. That’s a $4,700 premium over a standard gasoline powered Fit in Japan, but $3,500 less than the Insight, which makes it the cheapest hybrid available across the Pacific.

The Insight and Fit are built on the same platform, so the five-door Fit will likely use the same 1.3-liter mild-hybrid powertrain as its sibling. When we reviewed the Insight last year we concluded that its packaging sacrifices weren’t really worth the price premium over the Fit. If the Fit hybrid were offered here, the starting price would likely be somewhere around $18,000 based on the current prices of the Fit and Insight. We checked with Honda officials and they still have no plans to offer the Fit hybrid in the United States.

Gallery: First Drive: 2009 Honda Fit Sport

[Source: Reuters]

Report: Honda Fit Hybrid to cost $18,600* in Japan originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 09 Aug 2010 13:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Sounds About Right: San Francisco spending $25M to determine how much parking should cost

Filed under: Government/Legal

If you reside or frequent a large metropolitan area, you’re probably all too aware of the cost to park your vehicle. In cities like New York or Chicago, you can pay upwards of $30 or more for a full day of parking. To make matters worse, even with astronomical costs many drivers can’t even find an open spot.

San Francisco is looking for a permanent solution to its parking problems by going high tech and paying big bucks to do it. Frisco is investing $25 million on a new electronic parking system that will constantly gauge demand for spots and raise or lower pricing accordingly. So why go to all this expense and trouble to set parking prices?

Parking that’s too cheap may lead to spots getting filled too quickly, which will lead to cars circling around waiting for spots, clogging streets with unnecessary congestion. The goal of the $25 million project is to make parking cheap enough for people to afford it while at the same time expensive enough to ensure spots are always available.

The electronic parking system will work as a network, setting prices between a quarter and $6 per hour depending on demand. The high-tech solution will start with 190 new meters in the Hayes Valley area of San Francisco and in two years end with 6,000 metered spaces and 12,250 spots at the city’s 15 parking garages. The system will eventually make it possible for advanced planners to go online to find where the most spots are located. Distracted driving aficionados will be able to search for spots on their smartphone, making it easier for multi-taskers to park and harder for pedestrians and other drivers to avoid getting hit.

[Source: NPR | Image: Ingrid Taylar – C.C. License 2.0]

Sounds About Right: San Francisco spending $25M to determine how much parking should cost originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 29 Jul 2010 18:32:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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