AD #2313 – Alcantara Can’t Keep Up with Demand, VW Teases New Touareg, Car Sales Red Hot in Germany

March 19th, 2018 at 11:46am

Runtime: 6:38

0:25 Car Sales Red Hot in Germany
0:55 Renault Moves More Production Out of France
1:37 Chinese Partners Don’t Trust Ford
2:48 McLaren Nabs Flip-Flop Sponsorship
3:10 VW Takes on Pikes Peak
3:40 VW Teases New Touareg
4:49 Alcantara Can’t Keep Up with Demand
5:44 12 Hours of Sebring Results
6:09 Truex Dominates in California

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25 Comments to “AD #2313 – Alcantara Can’t Keep Up with Demand, VW Teases New Touareg, Car Sales Red Hot in Germany”

  1. Lisk Says:

    For those readers that may not know, the 911 that competes in IMSA’s GTLM class, this car is mid and not rear engined.

  2. GM Veteran Says:

    I wonder what the range will be on that VW electric Pikes Peak special? And, how far away is the nearest charging station from that mountain? Ha Ha! Can’t wait to see the video of their run!

  3. Lisk Says:

    You’d think Tesla would show off all that speed by sending a P100D up the mountain or better yet the new semi or roadster. Does anyone know if a Tesla has ever attempted Pikes Peak?

  4. Frederick Schmidt Says:

    Ford…what is going on there? Bunker mentality seems to be creeping into the company. Not just the China market, but moreover here in the US. There seems to be a direction towards a shrinking market share they are accepting. Why is Ford running away from the car market and conceed it to all the other companies. I wouldn’t be surprised to see the end of Mustang, at least how we know it now. Ford almost went that direction back in the days of the Probe vehicle. Yes they now have a mess of a selection with cars but running away from cars won’t lead to a bright future for Ford. There is something going on at Ford that seems very bunker mentality. The USA market is not europe and not asia. I see a shrinking market for Ford here and international.

  5. Lambo2015 Says:

    “If the F-Series were a company on its own, it would be worth $16 a share, rather than the $11 to $12 range where Ford shares have generally hovered for a year and a half. The lineup is anchored by the F-150 pickup”. Detroit Free Press 3/19.
    So they know where the money comes from (today) but if Ford was exclusively a truck manufacturer, I cant help but assume they would be trying to continue their truck success and expand into the car market. But because they are in they want out.. They certainly dont seem to be leading the industry in EV or AV technology so are they okay with just truck and SUV sales? They announced by 2020 86% of their sales will be truck SUV/CUVs. So I guess so.

  6. Frederick Schmidt Says:

    #5 There is something very strange going on with Ford. To me it doesn’t bode well for the future of Ford. The truck market will always be there but being veery weak in other types of vehicles is showing the white flag. You have to have a correct line up of cars and what Ford has done for a long time is maybe this will work or maybe that is better. Now lets gut it and just have a few just in case. That is a road to being a very niche company. I travel from the east coast to the mid west several times a year and just a strong truck line up won’t be enough. I think Ford has a terrible problem with their leadership at the top. To me the less you have to sell in your showroom the less customers will visit. A company can become to small to survive. Ford needs new leadership and its not what they have now.

  7. G.A.Branigan Says:

    And once gas prices hit the $4.00@ mark and above,the people will get rid of their ‘lifestyle’ trucks and go back into cars. The only ones left driving trucks are the ones that always drove pickups because of their jobs etc and actually use them for what they were originally intended for,hauling and towing.

  8. Chuck Grenci Says:

    Spying the ‘cutouts’ of the Alcantara in the show today I sure did see a lot of waste; that might be a reason for running low. But taking in the comment in the show today, stating that they wanted to keep production in Italy (so they could keep prices high), maybe that’s the part of the plan too.

    “Chinese Partners Don’t Trust Ford”, huh, I wonder if the feeling is mutual. I know I have my ‘trust’ issues with the Chinese business process.

  9. Kevin Anderson Says:

    As someone who only recently switched from cars to SUVs (2 years ago) I can tell you I am never going back to a car! The room, the ease of getting in and out, the view of traffic, the confidence while driving; none of it can be matched by a car. If gas doubles in price, I’ll just get a smaller SUV. Most SUV’s are just tall cars anyway. People who say conventional cars are coming back are just dreaming.

  10. Lambo2015 Says:

    #8 Chuck I had to laugh too at the thought of the Chinese not trusting Ford. Any partnership in Fords eyes was to sell cars in China no anterior motives, unlike the Chinese which require a partnership to gain knowledge and experience from a company that has been building cars for over 100 years so at a later date they can produce cars on their own and undercut Ford with plans to sell globally including the US.

  11. lambo2015 Says:

    Oh no!! first person to be killed by a self driving car happened in AZ Sunday night into Monday. It was an AV Uber with a person behind the wheel.

  12. Chuck Grenci Says:

    I just saw the Uber death as well. While there was a driver behind the wheel, it was stated that the vehicle was in autonomous mode; utt-oh. And, certainly; condolences to the victims family.

  13. Kit Gerhart Says:

    #9 I had an SUV once, a Chevy TrailBlazer. It was good for pulling a U-Haul trailer when moving stuff to Florida, but it was thirsty, wallowy handling, and not that roomy, all things considered. I switched back to cars after about a year.

    Here is an interesting picture from 1967. How did all of these people in “middle America” survive with driving cars?

    https://flic.kr/p/Hc13Ed

  14. Kit Gerhart Says:

    The Uber fatality was a pedestrian.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/19/technology/uber-driverless-fatality.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=first-column-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news

  15. gary susie Says:

    I new Ford was going to get in trouble went they got rid of Fields.

  16. Kit Gerhart Says:

    It was a bad day for both Ford and GM at Sebring.

  17. Frederick Schmidt Says:

    Autonomous cars are a pipe dream with todays roads and vehicles. Imagine driving on I80 in Iowa at around 10 pm. A semi tractor trailer all of a sudden crosses over the media strip doing 75 mph and you are doing 75 mph(real world senario). If your driving your car you can most likley stop or avoid the semi. If your self driving car with or without a steering wheel,brake pedal gas pedal, what will you do? If your paying attention maybe you can avoid a collision if the car gives you back control quick enough or if the system reacts in time to avoid the crash. That is just one senario. If your not paying attention, well good luck! Our interstate road system is not ready for this if it will ever be. Let alone the local traffic in the real world. To me the system of roads that now exist are not suitable for autonomous vehicles. The mainstream navigation systems in vehicles and on cell phones can’t even get it right in some cases. I for one would love a self driving vehicle for my travels to the midwest several times a year(I hate commercial airlines especially flying to certain parts of the country)but this current formula is pie in the sky. The self driving vehicle model needs to begin with a totally different formula, with the network of roads and the vehicles that will use them.

  18. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Is Ford dropping the Focus from the U.S. market, or just sourcing it from China?

    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-ford-motor-future/ford-tests-focus-prototype-in-u-s-ahead-of-china-production-launch-idUSKBN1FB2B1

  19. MJB Says:

    It appears to me that the pedestrian death may have resulted from a driver who put a little too much stock in the AV’s ability to handle the situation. This will surely be a landmark case in litigation – trying to determine who is more at fault, the AV that hit lady or the driver who sat there and did nothing as the AV hit the lady…

  20. Wim van Acker Says:

    @17, 11, 12, 14 And in related news: 37,000 died in U.S. traffic last year, plus 2.35 million injured or disabled. Yes, let’s continue like this, we are doing great without modern technology :-) Not worth trying something new. Imagine a person gets killed.

  21. MJB Says:

    @20 – Unfortunately, AV’s (like preachers/clergy) will forever be held to a higher standard than mere human-operated vehicles. It’s just public perception. Such that anytime a single one of them does anything errant it will be trumpeted.

  22. Frederick Schmidt Says:

    20 There’s modern technology and then there’s technology not ready to be unleashed on people. The AV is not ready to be unleashed on the roads. There have been many new technologies put into cars that have been great advances. Our system of roads are not designed for this driverless car of today. The concept is fine, the road system we have and will have for a long time are not. As far as people killed or injured in cars, drugs,alcohol and distracted driving accounts for a large segment of that stat. I do alot of cross country driving, horrible road conditions and arrogant truck drivers account for a large portion of accidents and fatalities. The system of roads we have now are part of the problem. Right now its like trying to put a square peg in a round hole.

  23. Kit Gerhart Says:

    For data on fatalities related to autonomous driving to be meaningful, we need to know how many fatalities per 10M miles, or something similar. There may be too few autonomous miles for that to mean much, but it would be interesting to see the data that exists.

  24. veh Says:

    Kit, I think there are still too few AV miles for the comparison to be meaningful.

    From all accounts, the AV behaved no worse than a human. My question is: could or should the AV potentially have behaved BETTER than a human? Given lidar and heat sensing, could the car have “seen” the pedestrian, and driven more cautiously?

    If it were light out and a human driver saw a person near the road, he/she would (in theory), watch them more closely in anticipation of them potentially darting out. Like my father always said, if you expect people to act irrationally, you’ll be ready.

  25. stephen Says:

    So Europe car sales are doing well and yet GM has left, Ford is behind the curve on SUVs and Fiat/FCA seems to have given up on competing. Detroit is focusing on trucks which sell in tiny numbers outside North America. When oil prices rise or regulations to avoid climate collapse kick in, how will these trucks sell as their used value tanks outside actual commercial users