Video: 2014 Fiat 500L now comes with a complimentary Italian family

Filed under: Budget, Marketing/Advertising, Videos, Hatchback, Humor, Fiat

2014 Fiat 500L

Fiat’s marketing machine has invaded Funny or Die, and the resulting web commercial is both entertaining and weird. Watch one couple buy the “most stylish” and “roomiest” car they’ve ever had, thinking they’d be able to transport golf bags and art supplies (and 32 basketballs?) only to have the roomy-for-a-Cinquecento back seat filled with a complimentary Italian family. In real life, we can’t see this being a good thing; not only do they take up space, but their added weight most certainly would hurt gas mileage and performance.

But in commercial land, it comes off as funny, and Fiat does prove that the 2014 500L is roomy enough for five people (including the driver), if not golf bags, art supplies and 32 basketballs. Scroll down to watch amusing Internet short below.

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2014 Fiat 500L now comes with a complimentary Italian family originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 06 Aug 2013 12:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Video: Griswold Family travels to Disney in the Family Truckster, for real

Filed under: Classics, Wagon, Videos, Celebrities, Humor, Specialty, Design/Style, TV/Movies

Wagon Queen Family Truckster

Is there anyone among us who didn’t laugh uncontrollably at the Family Truckster that transported Clark, Ellen, Rusty and Audrey (along with a few other, less fortunate souls…) to Wally World in National Lampoon’s Vacation? We thought not. Such a classic piece of Hollywood automobilia deserves such recognition, we think, and we’re happy to report that one real-life Griswold Family has replicated the movie’s fateful trip the best way it can: with a Wagon Queen Family Truckster of their very own.

Wally World exists only in the imagination of the movies, and that’s fine because Disney World not only exists but is a perfect fill-in for the Griswold Family Vacation. The family may not be greeted by the late, great John Candy, and they probably aren’t going to see Christie Brinkley in a bright red Ferrari, but they will for sure see Mickey Mouse, and hopefully even Tinker Bell, if they’re lucky.

Check out the video below to see the real-life Griswold Family and their faithful recreation of the infamous Family Truckster, and feel free to head on over to the official Disney blog for more on the family and their vacationing travails. Finally, check out another fan-made Family Truckster here.

Continue reading Griswold Family travels to Disney in the Family Truckster, for real

Griswold Family travels to Disney in the Family Truckster, for real originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 31 Jul 2013 19:58:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Video: Father’s ultra-rare Ferrari to leave family for a good cause

Filed under: Classics, Convertible, Performance, Videos, Ferrari, Luxury

1967 275 GTB/4*S N.A.R.T. Spyder - video screencap - front three-quarter view, top down

It isn’t every day that the rarest of Ferrari models change hands. In fact, you can count your fingers to get the number of 275 GTB/4*S N.A.R.T. Spyders that ever existed. The 1967 Ferrari you see here is one of those ten Spyders, and it has stayed in the same family since it was bought new.

The car was bought through Luigi Chinetti, Ferrari’s US importer at the time, by the late Eddie Smith Sr., a Ferrari collector and businessman from North Carolina. Smith kept it – and kept driving it – until the day he died six years ago. Since then, this remarkable machine has been collecting dust. Smith’s son, Eddie Smith Jr., spent some time with Petrolicious to give a history of the car and explain why he and his family are going to do the one thing his father never could: sell it. The catch? All of the money it earns on the auction block will be donated to charity.

“It’ll be a bittersweet thing, because we know the fact that all the money is going to charities that he would approve of,” Smith Jr. said about his father, and it “will really make him smile, because he loved to give back.”

Look for the car at this year’s RM Auction in Monterey next month, where it should net millions of dollars before it gets a new owner. In the meantime, be sure to watch the video below. (And if it doesn’t yank at your heartstrings, please check your pulse or watch more Petrolicious videos.)

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Father’s ultra-rare Ferrari to leave family for a good cause originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 24 Jul 2013 14:58:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Report: Peugeot family to cede control to GM?

Filed under: Europe, Government/Legal, Hirings/Firings/Layoffs, Plants/Manufacturing, GM, Earnings/Financials, Opel, Peugeot

Peugeot Onyx wheel detail

It’s doom and gloom time, folks – PSA Peugeot-Citroën is seriously on the ropes. According to a report from Reuters, citing those ever-so-mysterious “people familiar with the matter,” suggests that the Peugeot family, which currently owns a 25.4-percent stake in the eponymous automaker and 38.1 percent of voting rights, “has now accepted that they will lose control” of the company. The rumormill churns with the possibility that control of Peugeot and Citroen will be handed over to General Motors, which spent $423 million to obtain seven percent of Peugeot last year.

If GM doesn’t accept control of Peugeot, which would require a cash outlay that GM has already said it isn’t going to spend (at least not without assurances that it will be allowed to shutter factories and lay off workers in France and Germany), analysts predict Peugeot will run out of cash before the end of 2013. Peugeot had previously turned to Dongfeng, a Chinese company it has allied with in the industrial sector, for assistance, but those talks have apparently stalled.

What would GM do with Peugeot if it were to make an additional investment? The answer is murky at best, but previous speculation had pinned a slew of shared platforms between the French automaker and GM’s European arm, Opel, along with the consolidation of workforce and manufacturing capabilities. In other words, plant shutdowns, laid-off workers and the expected monetary savings those actions would bring.

The problem with the above scenario, though, is that the French government, which made a controversial investment of 7 billion euros ($9 billion USD) in the automaker’s finance arm to guarantee its loans, is likely to resist large-scale workforce reductions and plant closures within its borders. Doom and gloom, indeed…

Peugeot family to cede control to GM? originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 27 Jun 2013 17:46:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Official: Renault-Nissan debuts new Common Module Family for future vehicles

Filed under: Plants/Manufacturing, Technology, Nissan, Renault

Renault-Nissan Alliance's Common Module Family platform - exploded parts diagram view

Platform sharing is nothing new for the 14-year-old Renault-Nissan Alliance, but this partnership is set to introduce new modular platform components that will eventually underpin 11 Renault models and three Nissan vehicles by 2020. Rather than being a typical platform, the Common Module Family (CMF) actually represents five segments of a platform that can be used in various applications, and one of the first vehicles to use this architecture will be the 2014 Nissan Rogue (spy shots of which are shown below) when it arrives “in late 2013.”

As pictured in the image above (click to expand), CMF is composed of four chassis component, principally the front underbody, rear underbody, engine bay and cockpit as well as a common electrical system. Besides the next-gen Rogue, future Nissan models to share CMF will include the Qashqai and X-Trail, while Renault models will start using the platform next year on vehicles including the Scénic and Laguna. The CMF architecture is expected to help the Alliance reduce the parts cost of a vehicle by up to 30 percent and reduce the entry cost by up to 40 percent. The official press release with more details about CMF, and what it means for Renault-Nissan, is posted below.

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Renault-Nissan debuts new Common Module Family for future vehicles originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 20 Jun 2013 10:57:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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GM recalls over 230,000 more Trailblazer-family SUVs over door electronics

Filed under: SUV, Government/Legal, Recalls, Safety, Buick, Chevrolet, GM, GMC, Saab

Back in August, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announced a recall on the General Motors GMT360 SUVs (Buick Rainier, Chevrolet Trailblazer, GMC Envoy, Isuzu Ascender and Saab 9-7X) ranging from the 2005 to 2007 model years and the 2006 GMT370 SUVs (Chevrolet Trailblazer EXT and GMC Envoy XL) due to potential fires associated with the driver’s door module. Initially limited to 250,000 units sold or registered in 20 Snow Belt states (and the District of Columbia), the recall has now been expanded to include an additional 193,000 of these SUVs in the US and, according to The Detroit News, 40,000 more sold outside the US, including Canada and Mexico.

Like the original recall, the issue is still a faulty driver’s door module that can short out, which could lead to a fire. The Detroit News is reporting that, out of the 443,000 units being recalled, GM says that there were 58 fires that caused 11 minor injuries, and the expanded recall accounted for six fires and one injury. Despite the lower number of fires, the recall notice recommends that owners park their vehicles until the recall repairs has been performed.

On recalled units with functional modules, the repair consists of a protective coating being applied to the module, while vehicles with modules that are not working properly will have the driver’s door module replaced. The official recall notice is posted below, and it includes contact information for customers of all five brands.

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GM recalls over 230,000 more Trailblazer-family SUVs over door electronics originally appeared on Autoblog on Sun, 16 Jun 2013 11:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Report: Maserati family growing larger thanks to Chinese market

Filed under: Sedan, SUV, Maserati, Rumormill

maserati sedan mule

Spy Shots: Maserati “Baby Quattroporte” – Click above for high-res image gallery

The Maserati family of automobiles is a small, tight-knit clan of exotic Italian machinery that sounds as good as it looks. Fiat-Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne wants to expand that family, and capture more of the growing exotic car market that is currently taking shape in China. What does this all mean to the Trident brand?

We’ve known about a baby Quattroporte for some time, but the grown-up sedan is also due for a refresh. Each model may get an all-wheel-drive version thanks to the new tech found under the body of the Ferrari FF. In addition to the pair of four-doors, a Maserati SUV (to be based off the latest Jeep Grand Cherokee) is in the works. Once here, it will surely do battle the Porsche Cayenne for the title of “most hated vehicle amongst purists-slash-best seller.” That vehicle may be built in Italy at Fiat’s former Bertone plant.

And finally, according to a report from Car and Driver, the Italian brand may use a turbocharged and MultiAir-equipped version of Chrysler’s Pentastar V6 engine with 400 horsepower along with a turbodiesel from Fiat in lieu of a V8 borrowed from Ferrari.

Maserati family growing larger thanks to Chinese market originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 17 May 2011 16:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp and Agnelli family’s Exor confirm F1 plan

Filed under: Motorsports, Fiat

John Elkann and Luca di Montezemolo

Exor/Fiat CEO John Elkann with Ferrari chairman Luca di Montezemolo trackside

It may have seemed far-fetched when the news first broke, and Bernie Ecclestone may think it will never amount to anything, but the reports of a plan to buy-out Formula 1 have proven factual.

The initial reports indicated that Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation, together with an unnamed second investor (speculated to be connected to Ferrari), were looking into acquiring the commercial rights to the premier motor racing series, which are currently held by CVC Capital and directed by Ecclestone. That second party turns out the be Exor, the investment company owned by the Agnelli family and chaired by its scion John Elkann, who also heads up the Fiat Group… which in turn owns Ferrari.

Exor has confirmed that it and News Corp are interested in buying all or part of the F1 business, although it admits that its interest alone won’t necessarily lead to the deal’s completion. After all, CVC would have to be willing to sell, and sources don’t expect that to come any time soon. But then, everything has its price.

The notion of Ferrari’s owners also owning F1, of course, will lead to much speculation, particularly since the team’s former chief executive Jean Todt already presides over the FIA, the body which governs everything about the sport that Formula One Management doesn’t. Follow the jump for the brief announcement from Exor.

Continue reading Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp and Agnelli family’s Exor confirm F1 plan

Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp and Agnelli family’s Exor confirm F1 plan originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 04 May 2011 14:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Maserati GranTurismo MC Stradale joins the family portrait

Filed under: Performance, Videos, Maserati, Luxury

Maserati lineup

Maserati GranTurismo MC Stradale joins its family – Click above to watch the video after the jump

Major automakers take note: if you want to see how far your can go with a single platform, look towards small exotic automakers like Maserati or Aston Martin.

Both these rival marques build their entire lineup on a single platform each (with occasional exceptions like the MC12 or One-77, respectively). In Maserati’s case, the latest addition is the GranTurismo MC Stradale (known just as the GranTurismo MC on this side of the Atlantic). And to tie the family together, the Modenese automaker has released this video that showcases the MC against a backdrop that also includes the standard GranTurismo coupe, the GranCabrio (known here as the GranTurismo Convertible) and the Quattroporte flagship.

Follow the jump to scope out the footage and start counting those savings bonds.

Gallery: Maserati GranTurismo MC Stradale

Continue reading Maserati GranTurismo MC Stradale joins the family portrait

Maserati GranTurismo MC Stradale joins the family portrait originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 02 May 2011 19:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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New York 2011: Honda brings entire 2012 Civic family to New York

Filed under: New York Auto Show, Coupe, Hybrid, Sedan, Honda

2012 Honda Civic Si

2012 Honda Civic Si – Click above for high-res image gallery

Honda brought the whole family of 2012 Civics to the party at this year’s New York Auto Show. We’ve gotten to feast our eyes on the coupe, sedan, Si, hybrid and natural gas-drinking GX. That’s a lot of new sheetmetal to look at, so we decided to pack them all in one post to make it easy on you.

The 2012 Civic coupe, sedan and GX are all powered by a 1.8-liter inline four-cylinder engine that produces 140 horsepower. In uber-efficient HF guise, the same engines is capable of returning 41 miles per gallon fuel economy on the highway. The standard coupe and sedan are nearly as frugal at 39 mpg on the highway. We’ll have a separate report on the new Civic Hybrid soon, but in the meantime know that it will be rated at 44 mpg combined, an improvement of 4 mpg over last year’s model.

Were it our money on the line, however, we’d trade a few miles per gallon for a bit more driving excitement. The 2012 Honda Civic Si would be our choice, with its new 200-horsepower/170 pound-feet of torque 2.4-liter four-cylinder. Still, this is a compact Honda and, when paired with the six-speed manual gearbox, the Civic Si achieves 31 miles per gallon on the highway.

You can check out all of the new Civics in the galleries below. After that, take a dive into Honda’s official press release after the jump.

Gallery: 2012 Honda Civic Si: New York 2011

Gallery: 2012 Honda Civic Coupe: New York 2011

Gallery: 2012 Honda Civic Sedan: New York 2011

Gallery: 2012 Honda Civic GX: New York 2011

Gallery: 2012 Honda Civic Hybrid: New York 2011

Live photos copyright (C)2011 Drew Phillips / AOL

Continue reading New York 2011: Honda brings entire 2012 Civic family to New York

New York 2011: Honda brings entire 2012 Civic family to New York originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 21 Apr 2011 15:58:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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