March 30th, 2012 at 12:41pm
Subaru announced it will introduce the 2013 Legacy and Outback models at the New York Auto Show next week. A new study from J.D. Power says a customer’s satisfaction with their vehicle’s tires influences brand and dealership loyalty. Gas prices in Italy are soaring due to new austerity measures put in place. All that and more, plus guest host Peter De Lorenzo, the Autoextremist, shares his driving impressions on the 2012 Audi S5 Quattro Coupe.
No, you’re not seeing things. It’s me again, Peter De Lorenzo, the Autoextremist. McElroy’s still out of the office – more of that official business I mentioned yesterday. As for today’s show, we’ll take a peek at the latest episode of Autoline This Week, we’ll find out a little bit of what’s going on at Lincoln PLUS I recently spent a few days behind the wheel of a German thoroughbred. Which one? Stay tuned to find out. In the meantime, here’s the news.
2013 SRT VIPER TEASED
With The New York Auto Show set to kick off next week, carmakers continue to tease us with what they’ll unveil at the show. Chrysler released this interior photo of the new 2013 SRT Viper. It doesn’t really show much but we’ll fill you in on all the details once it debuts.
2013 SUBARU LEGACY & OUTBACK
And Subaru announced it will introduce the 2013 Legacy and Outback models in New York. Both vehicles feature re-styled front-ends and a new 2.5-liter boxer engine, which offers more power and better fuel efficiency compared to the previous models.
LINCOLN DEALER CHANGES
For a decade or more Lincoln has been a backwater brand. Ford’s luxury division has received neither the attention it needs nor the resources it deserves. But a new journey has begun. Lincoln is working overtime to reinvent itself. For the first time since the 1970s it has its own dedicated design studio. Its staff has grown from just 10 people a year or so ago to more than 200 today. Things are changing, even on the dealer-side of the business.
Lincoln will have more to say about its future next week at the New York Auto Show. Among other things, the production version of the redesigned MKZ will be revealed, and we look forward to seeing it as the rejuvenation of Lincoln continues.
TIRES INFLUENCE LOYALTY
JD Power released an interesting study that says a customer’s satisfaction with their vehicle’s tires influences brand and dealership loyalty. According to the report, 67 percent of owners who rate their tire as “truly exceptional” say they will definitely re-purchase the brand. That number drops to 59 percent if owners weren’t as satisfied with their tires. The study also shows customers are more likely to return to the dealer for maintenance and repair work if they’re highly satisfied with their tires. Researchers suggest better-performing tires help with the perception of the vehicle.
AAH FROM KATZ’S
Hey, do you live in the New York area? If so, you can attend a LIVE broadcast of Autoline After Hours next Thursday, April 5th, from Katz’s famous delicatessen in Manhattan. You can find out all the details on our website, Autoline.tv. Just visit the Autoline After Hours section where you can RSVP and get directions to Katz’s. We’d love to see you there.
AUTOLINE THIS WEEK
Anyway, we’re wrapping up another Friday and that means it’s time for a new episode of Autoline. This time John is in the nation’s capital for the Washington D.C. Auto Show. He sits down with a variety of government officials, industry experts and environmental activists. His list of interviewees included Phil Murtaugh the CEO of Coda Automotive, Roland Hwang from the Natural Resources Defense Council, Dave Zuchowski, the Executive Vice President of Sales at Hyundai Motor America and Margo Oge, the Director of Transportation and Air Quality at the U.S. EPA. As always, you can check out this entire show at Autoline.tv.
GAS PRICES SOAR IN ITALY
If you think we’ve got it bad in the U.S., be thankful you don’t live in Italy! According to Bloomberg, fuel prices in the boot-shaped country are soaring. At one Euro 82 per liter, they’re the highest in Europe. In ‘Merican money that works out to $9.17 a gallon! The reason for the increase is that gasoline taxes have risen 24 percent in the past year! The price hikes are part of austerity measures put in place by the country’s new Prime Minister, Mario Monti. Sucks to be them.
Hey, after the sponsor message, I’ll give you my take on a most desirable German road star.
It’s no secret that I like the way Audi does things, but as good as the flavor-of-the-moment A7 is I think the 2012 S5 Quattro Coupe with 6-speed gearbox just may be the best all-around Audi for the enthusiast. And this comes from someone who had an Audi S4.
Everything about the S5 is geared for pure driving pleasure. The 354 HP V8 is simply one of the best engines in the business today, and the slick-shifting 6-speed gearbox is perfectly suited for the power and torque at hand. The package size of the Audi Coupe seems to be just right and the crisp, contemporary design has worn well. And the interior refinement and detailing are simply exquisite. I just can’t say enough about how good this Audi felt and how well it drives, and that’s the bottom line here. It is truly fun to get behind the wheel of this machine and frankly in this day and age of rampant anti-car-ism, that says a lot.
Some would argue that the Audi S4 is the quintessential driver’s car of the Audi lineup, that it’s better balanced, lighter on its feet and offers better fuel economy. And I have previously agreed with that statement because I love the S4 in both double-clutch automatic and 6-speed configurations. But the power of the magnificent V8 in the S5 just cannot be denied. It transforms this Audi into a formidable machine to be reckoned with and one that’s satisfying in all aspects. (Okay, if you hammer it the mileage is not great, but please don’t be one of those people who gets a high-performance machine like this and then complains on your J.D. Power survey about the mileage. That’s auto dork-ism at its lowest.)
Needless to say, Audi has it goin’ on. And if your automotive jones veers toward V8s and 6-speeds, you owe it to yourself to give the S5 a close, hard look.
And that’s the High-Octane Truth for this Friday.
And the end of this week’s worth of Autoline Daily. Once more, I’m Peter De Lorenzo, the Autoextremist. But before I sign off, make sure you check out RoundAbout tonight. The show starts at 6:30 p.m. Eastern time at Autoline.tv. Good times are in store.
Anyway, have a great weekend and I’ll see you next time!