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(DETROIT) -- Jake Fisher, Director of Automotive Testing at Consumer Reports' Auto Test Center announced the findings of its closely watched annual Auto Reliability Survey to the Automotive Press Association Monday, October 28 at the Detroit Athletic Club. Survey data, drawn from Consumer Reports' 8 million magazine and online subscribers, allows the organization to track the reliability of vehicles up to 10-years old--and forecast how the new 2014 models will hold up.


The summary of results shows:
1. Audi is more reliable than most Japanese brands
2. Toyota and Subaru teamed up to make an unreliable car
3. The Honda Accord V6 and Nissan Altima are unreliable
4. The Tesla model is reliable
5. Toyota Camry, RAV4, Prius V and Audi A4 are no longer recommended due to poor IIHS small overlap performance
6. Audio and Infotainment problems dominate reliability problems for new cars


Submitted by GBV & JEB
Photo Submitted by Robert Benko

(BADEN-BADEN, Germany) -- The new version of Elektrobit's HMI (human machine interface) development platform -- EB GUIDE -- has a wide range of consumer-inspired features, including 3D content import, graphical animations and effects and speech recognition for dynamic data, as well as multi-touch and touch-gesture recognition for smart phone-like user interaction.

EB GUIDE 5.5 also allows carmakers and suppliers to create multi-modal HMIs enriched with HTML5 app-like content.

"The auto industry is working to provide drivers with the same seamless experience they've come to expect from their smart phones and other consumer electronics products," said Martin Schleicher, EB's vice president of Infotainment Products and Strategy. "New EB GUIDE 5.5 features such as dynamic speech recognition and HTML5 enable carmakers to bring web-based applications into the car.

With EB GUIDE, carmakers are able to integrate the latest consumer applications into their vehicles while taking into account driver distraction. The result is a safe, convenient and superior driving experience."

The latest version of EB's HMI development platform is being released today (Oct. 16) at the International Conference "Electronic Systems for Motor Vehicles" in Baden-Baden. EB GUIDE 5.5 delivers an inter-process framework (IPC) for the integration of a HTML5 sandbox or any similar technology. The HTML5 integration is based on the EB GUIDE Graphic Target Framework (GTF) and an HTML5 enabled browser engine which is displayed in the core HMI via a HTML5 widget. The API (Application Programming Interface) available for app developers is directly generated from the development tool EB GUIDE Studio making it easier to grant HTML5 content a controlled channel to in-car data.

Management of pop-ups and possible driver distraction is handled by the core HMI. As a result, carmakers are able to model the usability of the whole HMI and the security level access for external applications, ensuring that the device will always be up to date during the car's life-cycle and allowing the delivery of new content for the driver.

The newest version of EB GUIDE also offers a DirectXRenderer, which enables EB GUIDE GTF on Microsoft Windows 8 RT. It also supports several new speech options, since external grammar files can be used directly in EB GUIDE Studio for more creative speech interfaces. In addition, version 5.5 allows dynamic vocabulary to adapt speech recognition to real-life data like MP3 lists, address books or radio stations. Furthermore, EB showcases a technology preview on the usage of statistic language models (SLM) to create more natural voice user interfaces.

EB GUIDE 5.5 offers an improved support for customers in Japan. For example, the EB GUIDE Studio user interface and the first part of documentation are now available in Japanese.

EB GUIDE is one of the world's leading integrated HMI software platforms and has been used by major global carmakers and suppliers across markets and carlines since 2005. It is a complete software solution that provides more flexibility, shortens time-to-market and reduces the cost of developing HMIs.

DETROIT (AP) - General Motors says it will start selling a Chevrolet Impala sedan next summer that runs on both natural gas and gasoline. The company says both fuels are needed because there are few natural gas filling stations in the U.S. GM says the Impala will be the only factory-produced full-size car that runs on both fuels. Natural gas is plentiful in the U.S. and is cheaper than gasoline. AAA says gas costs about $3.35 per gallon. Natural gas fueling station company Clean Energy says compressed natural gas costs $2.94 for the amount equal to a gallon of diesel fuel. GM didn't reveal the new Impala's price. A gas-powered Impala starts around $28,000. CEO Dan Akerson announced the car at a Washington event marking the 40th anniversary of the OPEC oil embargo.

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - The Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway will be run in April next year after nearly a decade of racing on Mother's Day weekend. Track President Chip Wile said Friday the Sprint Cup event would be held Saturday, April 12. The Nationwide race will be run Friday, April 11. Both those races are run under Darlington's lights. It's the second time Darlington has shifted from a holiday weekend. The track "Too Tough To Tame" ran the Southern 500 on Labor Day weekend for over half a century until shifting to larger California Speedway. Atlanta Motor Speedway currently holds a Labor Day weekend race. Wile says Kansas Speedway would move to Mother's Day weekend in 2014. Wile says April's temperatures aren't as hot as May, making it better for fans and competitors. 

Wednesday, 09 October 2013 13:54

GM recalling pickup trucks to fix seats

DETROIT (AP) - General Motors is recalling nearly 22,000 full-size pickup trucks to fix problems with the seats. The recall affects Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups from the 2014 model year that were sold in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. The trucks have manual front reclining seat backs. Canadian safety regulators say the seats could move in a rear-end crash, and the headrests may not protect passengers as designed. GM says it doesn't know of any crashes or injuries caused by the problem. Dealers will inspect the seat backs and adjust them if needed.

(DETROIT) -- U.S. auto sales of light vehicles in September 2013 indicated a decrease in sales of 4.2% of the U.S. automobile companies.

GM sold 187,195 with a decrease of 11.0% from 2012
Ford sold 184,452 with an increase of 5.7% from 2012
Toyota sold 164,457 with a decrease of 4.3% from 2012
Honda sold 105,563 with a decrease of 9.9% from 2012
Chrysler sold 143,017 with an increase of .07% from 2012
Hyundai sold 55,102 with a decrease of 8.2% from 2012
Nissan sold 86,868 with an increase of 5.5% from 2012

The Detroit Big Three had 45.1% of all car sales in September 2013. Compared total for 2013 with 2012 shows total sales through August, the increase was 8.1% more vehicles sold. The prediction for 2013 in an increase for all domestic auto makers for a total of 15.4 million vehicles.


BROOKLYN, Mich. (Sept. 26, 2013) - Michigan International Speedway has proven to be a valuable testing facility to the auto industry. Track president Roger Curtis continues to open the facility for a multitude of destination events and increase its economic footprint for the state year-round.

Besides its pair of NASCAR races which annually see about 200,000 people at the racetrack - 60 percent of whom are from outside the state of Michigan - MIS officials have opened its property up to new business opportunities.

On Wednesday, Curtis served as the keynote speaker at the Michigan Automotive Summit in downtown Detroit at the Cobo Center. The prestigious event served as the perfect setting to discuss how the speedway and the automotive industry could continue and strengthen its relationship to help promote the State.

"It was an honor to speak at the Michigan Automotive Summit to discuss the role of MIS in future automotive research and development," Curtis said. "We are in the auto industries' backyard while providing a secure and neutral testing ground at the same time. As we explore ways to increase our economic impact on the area, we look forward to welcoming the industry to our facility."

Curtis offered a comprehensive look at the opportunities the speedway offers the automotive market and highlighted the distinct advantage the facility provides the industry in Michigan. The discussion touched on how MIS provides automakers and after-market manufacturers the capability to test and develop connected vehicle systems and other technologies in a protected, neutral and safe environment.

The 1,400 acres at Michigan International Speedway offers a range of amenities to meet all the needs of businesses and organizations. The Champions Club presented by CP Federal Credit Union offers a unique setting overlooking the frontstretch. Businesses can also use any of the Pit Road suites for meetings or networking functions.

Michigan International Speedway has become a key player in research and development for the auto manufacturers in recent years. The track serves as a neutral-test ground for the manufacturers to work together as the technology continues to be developed. Testing is scheduled for numerous days throughout the facility and the manufacturers continue to reserve additional dates.

The track has multiple intersections, a road course that goes through remote areas to offer real life situations in a secure environment and a recently repaved road course in the infield. In addition, the large skid pad on the back stretch offers an opportunity to test how cars talk to each other during quick braking, scalability and other evasive maneuvers.

In addition, public safety organizations routinely use the facility for safe driving, maneuverability and training courses.

MICHauto was proud to showcase and champion Michigan as the global epicenter of the automotive industry - a first of its kind event focused on Michigan's commitment to the automotive industry.

The 2013 Michigan Automotive Summit featured an action-packed agenda with high level speakers from industry, academia and government who highlighted the necessity to retain the state's automotive prowess and the importance of identifying ways to grow the industry.

Nowhere else was there as dense an automotive industry cluster with manufacturers, suppliers and businesses from around the globe. With a highly skilled workforce, cutting-edge research and development facilities and the most dense automotive supply chain in the world, Michigan has it all. The Detroit Regional Chamber's MICHauto program was proud to showcase the 2013 Michigan Automotive Summit, a first-of-its-kind event bringing together original equipment manufacturers, suppliers, academic institutions, government and nonprofit organizations to build on the state's automotive foundation.

Speakers and sessions highlighted Michigan's automotive capabilities and expertise, discuss industry growth opportunities, and touch on the necessity to capitalize on - and maintain - the state's role as the epicenter of the global automotive industry.

MICHauto is a key economic development initiative of the Detroit Regional Chamber dedicated to promoting, retaining and growing the automotive industry in Michigan. It's a statewide organization representing automotive interests including original equipment manufacturers, suppliers, academic institutions and companies serving the automotive industry in any capacity. MICHauto has something for any company that is doing business or wishes to do business with Michigan's automotive industry.

PICTURED: Michigan International Speedway President Roger Curtis served as the keynote speaker at the 2013 Michigan Automotive Summit at the Cobo Center in Detroit on Wednesday, Sept. 25.

Tuesday, 01 October 2013 11:49

Chrysler US sales rose slightly in September

DETROIT (AP) - Chrysler says its U.S. sales rose 1 percent in September on strong performances from the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Ram pickup. Chrysler says it sold 143,000 cars and trucks last month. September was the company's 42nd-straight month of sales gains. Analysts predict that overall industry sales dropped about 4 percent last month because the Labor Day weekend was counted with August sales. That pulled some sales from September into August. All major automakers are scheduled to report September sales numbers on Tuesday.

Tuesday, 01 October 2013 11:48

Ford's US sales rose 6 pct in September

DETROIT (AP) - Ford's U.S. sales rose 6 percent in September, with strong car sales making up for slower sales of SUVs. Ford said sales of the Fusion midsize sedan jumped 62 percent over last September, to 19,972. Sales of the subcompact Fiesta rose 28.5 percent to 5,043, while sales of the C-Max hybrid, which went on sale last fall, more than doubled to 2,182. But sales of the Escape SUV - one of Ford's best sellers - dropped 2 percent to 22,607, and Explorer SUV sales were up just 1.5 percent. F-Series pickup truck sales, which have seen big increases all year, were up 10 percent to 60,456. Ford said its Lincoln luxury brand sales dropped 5 percent as increases for the MKZ and MKS sedans couldn't outweigh lower SUV sales.

Tuesday, 01 October 2013 11:46

GM September US sales fall 11 percent

DETROIT (AP) - General Motors says its September sales dropped 11 percent from a year ago. Even the company's big pickup trucks saw sales declines, with the Chevy Silverado down almost 11 percent and the GMC Sierra off 2 percent. Industry analysts are predicting that total U.S. auto sales fell about 4 percent because Labor Day weekend was counted in August figures this year The normally strong weekend probably pulled sales from September into August. GM says it sold almost 188,000 cars and trucks last month. The company says its sales to fleet buyers like rental car companies were off 27 percent for the month. GM sold 12,730 Chevrolet Cruze compacts, less than half of what it sold a year ago.