Archive for the ‘cars’ Category

Japan’s Bowling Ball Test

March 21, 2018

While defending his trade war during a fundraising speech in Missouri last week, President Trump claimed that in Japan, to test American auto imports, “they take a bowling ball from 20 feet up in the air and they drop it on the hood of the car. And if the hood dents, then the car doesn’t qualify…It’s horrible, the way we’re treated.”

The Japanese were baffled, since they don’t do that. Americans were, too, until they dug up the 2010 Nissan commercial above.

More:

“Donald Trump botches Japanese bowling ball on the car hood test,” Jon Greenberg, Politifact

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Holden Motorcars, 1948 — 2017

October 20, 2017

Australia’s car, the Holden. Recently reborn as a part of GM, the last Aussie-made car rolled off the assembly line on October 20th (that would be yesterday if you’re in Oz).

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Streets of Los Angeles

September 25, 2016

Driving in Los Angeles in the 1950s. Film from the King Rose Archives.

h/t: The Old Motor

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Handy as Roller Skates, Twice the Fun

September 24, 2016

The Renault Dauphine comes to America, 1959.

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Dieselgate: Bosch Was a Co-Conspirator

September 8, 2016

Dieselgate: Bosch Was a Co-Conspirator
As we surmised, Volkswagen could not have installed emissions-test-cheating software on its 11 million diesel vehicles without the connivance of electrical engineering and manufacturing firm Robert Bosch GmbH. VW’s lawyers are claiming Bosch involvement in Dieselgate, and the Feds are investigating. Despite Bosch denials, there’s evidence the firm knew about the illegal VW cheat but didn’t alert German government regulators (or did they?). Bosch even demanded legal cover from VeeDub but the auto giant said “Nein.”

So we’ve got a mess that will cost billions to remedy, and two huge German corporations blaming each other for it. Bosch even wants people to call the scandal “VW-Gate” instead of “Dieselgate”. How do you say “Nice try!” in German?

More:

“Bosch worked ‘hand-in-glove’ with VW in emissions fraud: lawyers,” David Shepardson and Joel Schectman, Reuters

“Volkswagen Supplier Played Key Role in Cheating, Court Papers Say,” Jack Ewing, New York Times

“Bosch Knew VW Might Get Nailed For Diesel Cheating, Demanded Indemnification: Report,” Patrick George, Jalopnik

Update:

“Volkswagen engineer pleads guilty in emissions scandal,”Megan Geuss, Ars Technica

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Detroit Made

September 5, 2016

“Detroit Made,” written by John Hiatt, recorded by Bob Seger in 2014. Video by Possum Hill. The song is about the 225-inch-long Buick Electra, which was actually built in Flint, about 70 miles from Detroit. Hey, they look like twin cities to the songwriter, who lives 500 miles away, in Tennessee.

“Now when I first got out of high school, I drove an old farm truck
All the girls they walked right by me, didn’t even say good luck
Now I ride my 225, they all want to be my friend
I’ll pick you up later tonight now baby
If you can wait till then”

Bob Seger website

More:

“Michigan mix-up: Bob Seger apologizes to Flint for ‘Detroit Made’ discrepancy during Saginaw concert,” Jessica Shepherd,  MLive

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Women & Cadillacs

September 3, 2016

“Women & Cadillacs” by the Doc Starkes & The Nite Riders, 1954.

James “Doc” Starkes (bass, trombone), Melvin Smith (vocals, baritone sax), Joe Sewell (tenor sax), Harry Crafton (guitar), Harry Van Walls (piano), and Jimmy Johnson (drums).

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One Piece At A Time

September 3, 2016

“One Piece At A Time,” written by Wayne Kemp, a number 1 country hit for Johnny Cash and the Tennessee Three in 1976. Someone really assembled a car like the one in the song, and it’s in the Johnny Cash Museum.

“Well, I left Kentucky back in forty nine
An’ went to Detroit workin’ on a ‘sembly line
The first year they had me puttin’ wheels on Cadillacs”

Lyrics here

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‘I Took Me Some Steel ….’

September 3, 2016

1956 Dodge TV commercial, via Jeff Quitney. Great scenes of 1957 model year cars and the Chrysler assembly plant.

There’s not much singing on the Ford assembly line these days, of course. Robots don’t sing, they whirr:

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Dieselgate: Volkswagen or Bosch?

October 7, 2015

11 million Volkswagen diesel cars, 500,000 of them in the USA, have emissions-test-cheating software that allows them to produce lower emissions when tested by regulators and higher-performance dirty exhaust while they’re actually on the road. Now that WV has been caught, EPA is acting accordingly. Volkswagen engineers were certainly involved, but the Wolfsburg firm may not be the only one snared in Dieselgate. Most VW electronic equipment and software is built by Robert Bosch GmbH:

“It isn’t clear whether Bosch provided Volkswagen with the software at the heart of the scandal, or whether any of the Bosch-built components interacted with the software.

‘How these components are calibrated and integrated into complete vehicle systems is the responsibility of each auto maker,’ the Stuttgart-based company said.

Still, questions over how the software worked and who was responsible for installing it have spilled over to include Bosch.

German newspapers have reported that Bosch told Volkswagen in a 2007 letter that the use of Bosch-made software to manipulate car emissions was illegal. Volkswagen declined to comment Friday on the reports.”

— “Bosch Could Get Drawn Into Volkswagen Emissions Litigation,” Robert Wall, Wall Street Journal

So if Bosch knew VW was hacking their software, why didn’t they tell the authorities? Worse: Did Bosch tell the German government, which took no action other than suppressing the information?

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