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Mar/24 - GM: Quietness of new Ecotec engines for small vehicles will be 'best in class' GM: Quietness of new Ecotec engines for small vehicles will be 'best in class'
General Motors is introducing a new family of eleven Ecotec engines. Focused on noise and vibration reduction, Ecotec engines are expected to power one in four GM vehicles by 2017. AutoPacific's Dave Sullivan isn't sure that the engines are as advanced as some of the competition; however, "the consumer only cares about noise, fuel economy and CO2 emissions." If GM can provide that, then the level of technological advancement compared to the competition won't need to be a primary concern.

Mar/05 - Tesla expects Europe, Asia sales to nearly double N.A. by end of the year Tesla expects Europe, Asia sales to nearly double N.A. by end of the year
Tesla Motors announced recently at the Geneva auto show its expectations that combined sales in Europe and Asia will almost double those of North America by the end of 2014. AutoPacific's Ed Kim says while growing international sales is a crucial part of Tesla's plan, it won't be easy.

Mar/04 - Poor Dodge Dart sales lead to 325 layoffs at Illinois plant Poor Dodge Dart sales lead to 325 layoffs at Illinois plant
Despite an overall rise in Chrysler sales, up 11% in February over the same month last year, the Dodge Dart has failed to keep up with its competitors. In response, Chrysler has temporarily laid off 325 workers at the Belvidere assembly plant in Illinois. AutoPacific's Dave Sullivan shares his thoughts about the impact Dodge Avenger incentives is having on Dart sales.

Feb/25 - Honda creates new Acura planning arm to lead brand overhaul Honda creates new Acura planning arm to lead brand overhaul
For Honda Motor Company, focusing on the Acura brand is a top priority. After a 10% drop in U.S. Acura sedan sales last year, Honda is creating a new group to plan business development for the brand. AutoPacific's Ed Kim says Acura is still struggling to define its image in the luxury category. "They are good, solid, dependable, somewhat premium cars that don't communicate any clear message about what they are," says Kim.

Feb/12 - Toyota recalling 1 million U.S. cars, including Prius, over software problems Toyota recalling 1 million U.S. cars, including Prius, over software problems
Toyota is voluntarily recalling 1.9 million Prius vehicles worldwide due to a software problem that could cause the vehicle to shut down or lose other functions. In the U.S., this includes 711,000 Prius vehicles for the 2010-14 model years. "This would definitely be considered a big recall," said AutoPacific's Ed Kim. "They're recalling pretty much every Prius built since 2010." Ed doesn't believe this will have a major impact on Toyota's reputation with consumers, however.